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


In Case You Missed It…

July 25, 2014 at 5:03 pm

This week on Off the Charts, we focused on the safety net, federal taxes, Social Security, food assistance, and health policy.

  • On the safety net, we excerpted Robert Greenstein’s commentary on House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s “Opportunity Grant” proposal and highlighted his discussion of the Ryan poverty plan on MSNBC’s “The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell.”  Stacy Dean excerpted a post by Olivia Golden of the Center for Law and Social Policy debunking myths about safety net programs.  Arloc Sherman explained that there are fewer poor children in America but more very poor children since the 1996 welfare law.  Donna Pavetti pointed out the discrepancy between Chairman Ryan’s rhetoric and the reality of his poverty plan.  She also listed three reasons why the 1996 welfare law should not be a model for reforming other safety net programs and four reasons why Ryan’s proposed work requirements are cause for concern.  And we rounded up all of our writings to date on the Ryan plan.
  • On federal taxes, Chuck Marr applauded Chairman Ryan’s call for an expansion of the Earned Income Tax Credit while noting two serious flaws in his plan.  He also pointed out the contradiction between Ryan’s new poverty plan and House Republicans’ vote to permanently change the Child Tax Credit in ways that will increase poverty.  Chye-Ching Huang excerpted her New York Times piece calling on Congress to address the growing number of corporate tax inversions. Arloc Sherman excerpted his commentary on issues related to marginal tax rates and government benefits.  Michael Mazerov urged Congress not to extend the ban on state and local sales taxation of Internet access fees unless pairing with legislation enabling states and localities to collect sales taxes on purchases from out-of-state Internet and catalog sellers.
  • On Social Security, Kathy Ruffing previewed Monday’s 2014 Social Security trustees’ report.  Paul Van de Water highlighted our new chart book on Social Security Disability Insurance.
  • On food assistance, we excerpted Stacy Dean’s testimony before a House Agriculture subcommittee on SNAP (food stamps) as a successful and influential part of the safety net.
  • On health policy, Edwin Park explained what the recent conflicting court rulings on federal marketplace subsidies mean for health reform.

We issued papers on how “direct certification” can enable more low-income children to receive school meals, the increase in deep poverty among children in the welfare law’s first decade, and why the House’s Child Tax Credit bill will leave millions of low-income working families behind.  We also released a chart book on Social Security Disability Insurance.  Arloc Sherman released a commentary on the effects of marginal tax rates on low- and moderate-income people.  Robert Greenstein released commentaries previewing Chairman Ryan’s poverty plan and examining Ryan’s “Opportunity Grant” proposal.  Stacy Dean testified before a House subcommittee on SNAP’s role in the safety net.  And we updated our backgrounder on how many weeks of unemployment compensation are available.

CBPP’s Chart of the Week:

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

Beware the Balanced Budget Amendment
U.S. News and World Report
July 25, 2014

Paul Ryan’s poverty plan attacks the wrong problem and comes up with the wrong solution
Washington Post
July 24, 2014

End the Deception on Profits and Taxes
New York Times
July 22, 2014

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In Case You Missed It…

July 18, 2014 at 4:32 pm

This week on Off the Charts, we focused on the federal budget and taxes, state budgets and taxes, the economy, food assistance, Social Security, housing, and health.

  • On the federal budget and taxes, Chuck Marr noted House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp’s (R-MI) troubling stand on tax compliance and pointed out that the House GOP’s IRS budget cuts will stifle enforcement and benefit tax evaders.  He urged policymakers to respond quickly to the current uptick in corporate tax inversions and discredited the idea that permanent “bonus depreciation” is a positive step toward tax reform.  He also showed how a Tax Policy Center analysis confirms our finding that the Child Tax Credit bill before the House would make many relatively affluent people better off while making low-income working families poorer.  Paul Van de Water explained that the Congressional Budget Office’s (CBO) new long-term budget projections are very similar to those that CBO published in September 2013.  Chye-Ching Huang highlighted a segment on HBO’s Last Week Tonight that knocked down estate tax myths.  Richard Kogan discussed the serious economic risks that a constitutional balanced budget amendment would pose.
  • On state budgets and taxes, Michael Leachman explained why states should reject resolutions calling for a constitutional convention.  Michael Mazerov described the risks of permanently banning sales taxes on Internet access charges and refuted three myths about the Internet Tax Freedom Act’s “Grandfather Clause.”
  • On the economy, we excerpted Jared Bernstein’s congressional testimony on the first five years of economic recovery since the Great Recession.
  • On food assistance, Becca Segal listed 10 reasons for schools to adopt community eligibility, an option that enables high-poverty school districts to eliminate applications and serve meals to all students at no charge.  Zoë Neuberger pointed to positive data from the first seven states that have implemented community eligibility.
  • On Social Security, Paul Van de Water explained why Congress should boost the share of the Social Security payroll tax revenue devoted to Disability Insurance.
  • On housing, Will Fischer highlighted the need to rebalance federal housing policy to better support low-income renters.
  • On health, Jesse Cross-Call described the positive benefits that the states that have expanded Medicaid under health reform are experiencing.

Jared Bernstein testified before Congress’ Joint Economic Committee on five years of economic recovery from the Great Recession.  We issued papers on the need to increase the share of the Social Security payroll tax that’s devoted to Disability Insurance, the risks of states calling for a constitutional convention, and the economic risks of a constitutional balanced budget amendment.

CBPP’s Chart of the Week:

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

Finally, Signs of Momentum on Corporate Inversions
Huffington Post
July 17, 2014

New jobs numbers offer no relief for Brownback
Lawrence Journal-World
July 17, 2014

Internet Tax Ban Could Be Big Win For Skype And Snapchat, Major Loss For States
Forbes
July 17, 2014

The misguided, counterproductive campaign against the IRS
MSNBC
July 15, 2014

House GOP’s IRS Budget Cuts:  A Field Day for Tax Cheats
Huffington Post
July 15, 2014

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

In Case You Missed It…

July 11, 2014 at 2:27 pm

This week on Off the Charts, we focused on food assistance, state budgets and taxes, federal taxes, and health care.

  • On food assistance, Becca Segal highlighted our video on the benefits of community eligibility, noted the wide variety of schools opting to become hunger-free through the program, and pointed to Chris Hayes’ segment on the benefits of community eligibility.  Dottie Rosenbaum highlighted newly released Agriculture Department data that show SNAP error rates have fallen across the country.
  • On state budgets and taxes, Erica Williams explained why more time is unlikely to fix the damage done by Kansas’ failed tax cut experiment.  Michael Mazerov discussed why Congress has no justification for permanently banning sales taxes on Internet access charges.
  • On federal taxes, Chuck Marr detailed the problems with reinstating the “bonus depreciation” tax provision, which lets businesses take bigger upfront tax deductions for certain new purchases.
  • On health care, Edwin Park described a new report to Congress from the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission that explains why overpayments to insurance companies through the Medicare Advantage program are not the right way to aid low-income beneficiaries.

We issued a paper on why Congress should end the ban on state and local taxation of Internet access subscriptions and posted a video explainer on the benefits of community eligibility.  We also updated our chart book on the legacy of the Great Recession and our paper on why policymakers should not make “bonus depreciation” permanent.

CBPP’s Chart of the Week:

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

No Justification for Permanently Banning Sales Taxes on Internet Access Charges
Huffington Post
July 11, 2014

Less than 1 percent of food stamps go to ineligible people
Vox
July 8, 2014

Kansas was supposed to be the GOP’s tax-cut paradise. Now it can barely pay its bills.
Vox
July 8, 2014

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

In Case You Missed It…

July 3, 2014 at 1:04 pm

This week on Off the Charts, we focused on housing, state budgets and taxes, health reform, food assistance, and jobs.

  • On housing, Douglas Rice highlighted a new report by Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies on the growing “crisis of affordability” for renters and called on lawmakers to strengthen federal policy to address the issue. 
  • On state budgets and taxes, Michael Leachman pointed to Kansas’ year-end revenue drop, which provides further proof of the state’s failed tax cut program. 
  • On health reform, Edwin Park explained how the Republican Study Committee’s health plan would expand the ranks of the uninsured and end various important consumer protections. 
  • On food assistance, Dottie Rosenbaum highlighted new figures from the Agriculture Department that show SNAP error rates have continued to fall to the lowest point on record. We also issued a paper on SNAP error rates, which fell to all-time lows in 2013, and we updated our chart book on the legacy of the Great Recession.
  • On jobs, Chad Stone commented on the June jobs report and explained why Congress should act immediately to restore emergency federal unemployment insurance.  Chris Mai pointed out that state and local jobs made big gains last month. 

We also issued a paper on SNAP error rates, which fell to all-time lows in 2013. 

CBPP’s Chart of the Week: 

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

Stop starving the beast of the IRS
Washington Post
July 2, 2014

Editorial: Incompetence at the IRS
The Baltimore Sun
June 27, 2014

QEDaily: Here’s How the Poor Really Live
The New Republic
June 27, 2014

Cutting More Meat Than Fat
US News and World Report
June 27, 2014

In Case You Missed It…

June 27, 2014 at 1:05 pm

This week on Off the Charts, we focused on food assistance, the federal budget and taxes, unemployment insurance, state budgets and taxes, and health reform.

  • On food assistance¸ Dottie Rosenbaum previewed the upcoming figures on how accurately states delivered SNAP (food stamp) benefits last year.  Zoë Neuberger explained that schools adopting “community eligibility” to deliver meals to all students at no charge can still receive other assistance.  Becca Segal pointed out that alternative sources of poverty data are available for schools that eliminate meal applications as part of community eligibility.
  • On the federal budget and taxes, Chuck Marr explained that cuts to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) budget have weakened enforcement and compromised taxpayer service.  He also showed that a Child Tax Credit expansion passed by the House Ways and Means Committee this week prioritizes affluent families over the working poor.  And he rebutted the claim that indexing the maximum credit to inflation would help all families, including those with low incomes.
  • On unemployment insurance, Chad Stone highlighted the nearly 300,000 veterans who have lost access to federal jobless benefits so far due to Congress’ failure to restart Emergency Unemployment Compensation.
  • On state budgets and taxes, Erica Williams listed some “do’s and don’ts” for states seeking stronger economies.
  • On health reform, Judy Solomon explained that states can reduce recidivism by expanding Medicaid.

We also issued papers on the implications of community eligibility for the education of disadvantaged students under Title I, the truth about health reform’s Medicaid expansion and people leaving jail, and the impact of cuts in the IRS budget.  In addition, we updated our guide to state fiscal policies for a stronger economy, our report on how community eligibility can help schools become hunger-free, our backgrounder on how many weeks of unemployment benefits are available in each state, and our chart book on the legacy of the Great Recession.

CBPP’s Chart of the Week:

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

In Punishing IRS, GOP Is Harming Honest Taxpayers
Fiscal Times
June 26, 2014

Shenandoah Valley students to get free breakfasts and lunches
Republican Herald

June 26, 2014

Nearly 300,000 veterans have lost out on jobless compensation because of the disdainful House GOP
Daily Kos
June 25, 2014

Congress Is Weighing Some Bafflingly Bad Ideas for Fixing Our Crumbling Bridges and Roads
New Republic
June 24, 2014

The Reality of Student Debt Is Different From the Clichés
New York Times
June 24, 2014

Thousands more students to get free lunch next fall
USA Today
June 23, 2014