Our continuing and increasingly dubious experiment with starving the public sector in Minnesota is producing almost daily reports of questionable budget cuts. A Star Tribune front-page story on disappearing lifeguards at public beaches is the latest manifestation of our increasingly penurious fiscal policy. Anti-government conservatives like to claim that much or most of government investment is unnecesssa... Read More
Some recent stories illustrate some of the consequences of the pay for services model of government. In Tonka Bay, the city has decided to charge fees to defray the costs of opening City Hall for public meetings that are not city-run. The council declined to waive the fee for a Republican Party caucus, and then decided it was consistent to also charge the League of Women Voters to stage its non-partisan candidate forum. The League objected. In Me... Read More
We didn't have any major explosions. Everyone thought we would. Read More
You don't build a recession-resistant economy that creates lasting prosperity with a one-time rebate check or tax cuts for only the very wealthy. The sad state of the economy today is living proof that a tax cut to the wealthy without investments in people has been a failure. Minneapolis has shown that you build common ground for a recession-resistant economy by investing in people and investing in an environment where opportunity and innovation is fostered. Read More
Score one for accountability. Effectiveness of public investment? Well... Even though a new report on JOBZ likely provoked some heartburn for supporters and raised serious questions about its cost-effectiveness, the report provides a useful look into the pitfalls that can afflict well-meaning economic development programs. Last month, we outlined some concerns about the state's JOBZ program designed to aid distressed areas of Minnesota by providi... Read More
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