The Center's work on 'In Case You Missed It' Issues


In Case You Missed It . . .

March 27, 2015 at 4:03 pm

This week on Off the Charts, we focused on the congressional budget plans, federal and state taxes, health, and housing.

  • On the congressional budget plans, Robert Greenstein pointed out that despite Republicans’ anti-fraud rhetoric, the House and Senate budget plans leave out funding for “program integrity” activities that are proven to save money. David Reich noted that the plans have no plans to fix sequestration’s tight constraints on non-entitlement programs and described how both plans will dramatically cut transportation infrastructure funding.  Richard Kogan revealed that the plans each get 69 percent of their cuts to non-defense spending from programs that serve people of limited means.  Isaac Shapiro found that the plans would ultimately cut programs for low- and moderate-income people by about 40 percent.  Jessica Schubel described the Medicaid cuts that the House budget plan could force states to make.  Brandon DeBot explained how the House budget plan’s deep cuts to Pell Grants would reduce college access for low- and modest-income students.  Douglas Rice described how the House and Senate budget plans fail to fully reverse the loss of 100,000 housing vouchers due to the sequestration budget cuts.  Shannon Spillane translated the language congressional Republicans are using to make their budget plans sound benign and even positive.  We also updated our congressional budget roundup with everything you need to know about the House and Senate plans.
  • On federal and state taxes, Chuck Marr explained why the House Ways and Means Committee bill to repeal the federal estate tax on inherited wealth would create more inequality and bigger deficits and pointed out House Republicans’ misguided priorities in backing estate tax repeal. Michael Mitchell described how major tax-cutting states are looking to cut their higher education budgets further to patch their budget holes.
  • On health, Edwin Park highlighted a bipartisan House bill that permanently fixes Medicare’s flawed physician payment formula, extends the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) through 2017, and makes permanent the Qualifying Individuals program, which provides premium assistance for low-income recipients. Jesse Cross-Call described how extending CHIP funding would ease pressure on states as they formulate their budgets for the next fiscal year.
  • On housing, Will Fischer explained why the Senate should quickly approve a House-passed measure to streamline rental assistance for people with fixed incomes.

This week, we released papers on the congressional budget plans’ disproportionate cuts in programs for people with limited means, proposed cuts to Pell Grants for higher education, the compromise to fix Medicare’s physician payment formula and extend CHIP, and how the Obama budget restores housing vouchers. We posted a fact sheet on  big cuts in state income taxes not yielding promised benefits and a paper on state innovations in leveraging technology for health and human services.  We updated our reports on eliminating the estate tax and ten facts you should know about the estate tax. We also updated our backgrounders on unemployment compensation and the estate tax.

CBPP’s Chart of the Week – House, Senate Budget Plans Each Get 69 Percent of Cuts From Low-Income Programs:

A variety of news outlets featured CBPP’s work and experts recently. Here are some highlights:

The Misguided Crusade to Kill the Estate Tax
US News and World Report
March 27, 2015

As the G.O.P. Promises to Address Inequality, Follow the Money
New Yorker
March 27, 2015

Why the House Republican budget plan matters
MSNBC.com
March 26, 2015

N.J. lawmakers push budget reforms year after surprise shortfall prompted Christie to slash pensions
NJ.com
March 24, 2015

This is no way to ease inequality
Washington Post
March 22, 2015

Join the Full Employment Project of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities on March 30 for a keynote speech by former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and a discussion by leading economists about policies that can help restore and maintain full employment in U.S. labor markets. RSVP

Don’t miss any of our posts, papers, or charts — follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

 

In Case You Missed It . . .

March 20, 2015 at 4:59 pm

In this busy week for Off the Charts, we focused on the budget plans from the chairs of the House and Senate Budget Committees, food assistance, the safety net, and health reform.

  • On the congressional budget plans, Chuck Marr showed that the plan from House Budget Committee Chairman Tom Price would heavily favor people at the top of the income scale. Bryann DaSilva explained that both the Price plan and the plan from Senate Budget Committee Chair Mike Enzi leave out key tax provisions for low-income working families. Edwin Park analyzed the radical Medicaid changes in the Price and Enzi.  Matt Broaddus explained why the success of the Children’s Health Insurance Program is no reason to convert much of Medicaid to block grants, as the Price and Enzi plans would.  David Reich warned that the program cuts under the Price plan will likely be much bigger than the plan’s “reconciliation” targets.  Visit our Congressional Budget Roundup for everything you need to know about the Price and Enzi plans.
  • On food assistance, Zoë Neuberger detailed the critical support that WIC provides to low-income women and young children. Ed Bolen described ten pilot projects announced this week to test new ways to encourage and support employment among SNAP participants.
  • On the safety net, LaDonna Pavetti explained why investing in children can lay the foundation for their long-term success. Arloc Sherman laid out data showing that the safety net lifts 39 million Americans out of poverty.
  • On health reform, Judy Solomon pointed out new data showing that health reform has greatly expanded health coverage. Jesse Cross-Call highlighted new reports finding that health reform’s Medicaid expansion has produced significant state budget savings.

This week, Robert Greenstein previewed the congressional budget plans and issued statements on both the Price and Enzi plans. We posted papers on the impact of “churn” in health and human services programs and the House Budget Committee’s plan to slash SNAP by $125 billion. We updated our paper on SNAP enrollment and the economy, our backgrounder on unemployment compensation, and our reviews of state government SNAP websites and online services for low-income benefit programs.

CBPP’s Chart of the Week – Illustrating the Priorities in the Price Budget:

A variety of news outlets featured CBPP’s work and experts recently. Here are some highlights:

House Republican Budget Could Double The Number Of Uninsured
Huffington Post
March 18, 2015

The House Budget Disaster
The New York Times
March 18, 2015

There’s a mysterious $1.1 trillion in spending cuts in the House GOP’s budget 
Washington Post
March 17, 2015

 Event

Join the Full Employment Project of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities on March 30th for a keynote speech by former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and a discussion of leading economists about policies that can help restore and maintain full employment in U.S. labor markets. RSVP

Don’t miss any of our posts, papers, or charts — follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

In Case You Missed It…

March 13, 2015 at 2:31 pm

This week on Off the Charts, we focused on the federal budget and taxes, state budgets and taxes, the safety net, and health reform.

  • On the federal budget and taxes, Chuck Marr countered the Tax Foundation’s claim that the new tax plan from Senators Mike Lee and Marco Rubio is tilted toward low-income people. We explained that two likely goals of the budget plans that the House and Senate Budget Committees are due to consider next week are severely flawed.
  • On state budgets and taxes, Michael Leachman described the damage that deep tax cuts are doing to states’ education funding.
  • On the safety net, LaDonna Pavetti pointed out why Arizona’s cuts to Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) are an example of the risks in expanding states’ responsibility for assisting the poor. Ed Bolen estimated that 60,000 veterans may lose SNAP (food stamp) benefits over the course of 2016 due to the return of time limits. Paul Van de Water explained that few Disability Insurance beneficiaries could support themselves by working.
  • On health reform, Paul Van de Water noted that the Congressional Budget Office now estimates that federal health spending will be nearly $700 billion less over the 2011-2020 period than it had earlier projected.

This week, we released our paper on why balancing the budget in ten years and with no new revenues are flawed goals. We updated our papers showing that low-income programs are not driving the nation’s long-term fiscal problems and that program spending outside Social Security and Medicare is already low in historical terms and is projected to fall further. We also updated our backgrounders on where our federal tax dollars go, where our federal tax revenues come from, federal tax expenditures, the legacy of the Great Recession, how many weeks of unemployment compensation are available, and Social Security Disability Insurance.

CBPP’s Chart of the Week – From Paul Van de Water’s blog post on Disability Insurance:

A variety of news outlets featured CBPP’s work and experts recently. Here are some highlights:

Can working families still afford UNC?
The News & Observer
March 10, 2015

Will Friday’s Jobs Report Force Janet Yellen’s Hand?
The Fiscal Times
March 6, 2015

States Are Slashing College Budgets and Raising Tuition
Bloomberg
March 5, 2015

Don’t miss any of our posts, papers, or charts — follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

In Case You Missed It…

March 6, 2015 at 3:35 pm

This week on Off the Charts, we focused on health reform, the federal budget and taxes, state budgets and taxes, and jobs.

  • On health reform, Edwin Park described why a plan from three Republican senators to address health reform subsidies would likely make coverage less affordable for marketplace enrollees and he laid out the negative consequences of another plan from three key House Republicans. He also noted that the House plan acknowledges some benefits of the health reform law as it stands.  Sarah Lueck debunked some of the myths surrounding health reform presented by the House Republican health plan.  Judy Solomon explained why a ruling against health reform’s subsidies would be wrong under the law and harmful to the millions who depend on coverage.  Jesse Cross-Call urged Congress to extend the Children’s Health Insurance Program.
  • On the federal budget and taxes, Chye-Ching Huang explained why one-time revenues from a tax on multinationals’ current stock of overseas profits could not replace apermanent cut in corporate tax rates. Chuck Marr analyzed the winners and losers of the new tax plan from Senators Mike Lee and Marco Rubio. Brandon DeBot highlighted a series of important new bills that would reward work and reduce poverty for low-income workers.
  • On state budget and taxes, Elizabeth McNichol explained why Wisconsin’s proposed “Right to Work” legislation would weaken protections for workers and exacerbate income inequality. Michael Leachman pointed out that several states are facing the consequences of tax cuts that have so far failed to produce economic benefits. Michael Mitchell highlighted our new state-by-state factsheets detailing higher education cuts.
  • On jobs, Chad Stone illustrated the February employment figures.

This week, Chad Stone released a statement on February’s jobs report.  We released state-by-state fact sheets on higher education funding.  We updated our papers on state Medicaid expansion waivers, low-income programs not driving the nation’s long-term fiscal problems, already-low program spending outside Social Security and Medicare projected to fall further, and the far-reaching benefits of the Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit. We also updated our backgrounder on unemployment insurance.

CBPP’s Chart of the Week – From Michael Mitchell’s blog post on higher education funding:


Click on the state abbreviation to jump to its fact sheet.

Note: North Dakota and Alaska are excluded from the fact sheets because they increased per-student higher ed funding between 2008 and 2014.

A variety of news outlets featured CBPP’s work and experts recently. Here are some highlights:

Paul Ryan touts his health care pseudo-plan
MSNBC
March 3, 2015

Workers aren’t the only ones waiting for wage growth
Governing
March 1, 2015

Higher Ed Cuts: Crisis Management or Political Ploy?
US News & World Report
February 27, 2015

Don’t miss any of our posts, papers, or charts — follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

In Case You Missed It…

February 27, 2015 at 3:24 pm

This week on Off the Charts, we focused on the federal budget and taxes, food assistance, Disability Insurance, and state budgets.

  • On the federal budget and taxes, Paul Van de Water explained some of the problems with “generational accounting.”  Chye-Ching Huang warned of the risks of using “dynamic scoring” for tax reform and other major legislation.
  • On food assistance, we excerpted Robert Greenstein’s congressional testimony on SNAP’s track record of eliminating severe hunger and malnutrition.  Zoë Neuberger highlighted our new report on how many schools have adopted the community eligibility option to reduce hunger.  Becca Segal called on community leaders, child advocates, and policymakers to spread the word about the benefits of community eligibility and mapped the participating schools.
  • On Disability Insurance, Kathy Ruffing explained why it’s an essential component of Social Security.
  • On state budgets, Michael Mitchell highlighted a report from the Brennan Center for Justice that finds growing incarceration contributed little to the sharp drop in crime in recent decades.

This week we released papers on how the Hatch-Upton proposal for the Children’s Health Insurance Program could weaken children’s health coverage and on the number of schools adopting community eligibility. We posted Robert Greenstein’s testimony on the importance of SNAP.  We updated our database on schools adopting community eligibility, our paper on why the excise tax on medical devices should not be repealed, and our backgrounder on unemployment insurance.

CBPP’s Chart of the Week – From Robert Greenstein’s testimony before the House Agriculture Committee:

A variety of news outlets featured CBPP’s work and experts recently. Here are some highlights:

Crying Crisis
US News & World Report
February 27, 2015

Tax Increases Much-Regretted Necessity for Republican Governors
Bloomberg
February 23, 2015

Walmart Changes the Debate on Minimum Wage
The Fiscal Times
February 20, 2015

Is Welfare Reform Causing Earlier Deaths?
The Nation
February 17, 2015

Don’t miss any of our posts, papers, or charts — follow us on Twitter and Instagram.