This week on Off the Charts, we talked about Chairman Ryan’s budget plan, the budget deficit, tax expenditures, health, state tax and budget issues, school meals, tax expenditures, and housing.
- On the budget, we updated our report showing that the bulk of cuts in House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s budget plan would come from programs for lower-income Americans. Bob Greenstein also appeared on MSNBC’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports” to discuss the ongoing budget debate.
- On the deficit, Chad Stone explained why posturing over the federal debt limit before taking the necessary step to raise it is a waste of time that should, instead, be devoted to making a deal on long-term deficit reduction.
- On tax expenditures, Chuck Marr documented that curbing tax expenditures can make the tax code more efficient and equitable and help to reduce deficits.
- On health, Sarah Lueck discussed how Mississippi’s requirement that residents travel for a face-to-face interview to qualify for Medicaid coverage every year precludes many eligible people from seeking Medicaid and likely raises administrative costs.
- On state tax and budget issues, Nick Johnson explained three charts detailing how state and local tax dollars are spent, Erica Williams illustrated how state Earned Income Tax Credits can help working-families make ends meet, and Jon Shure explained why complaints that many states had raised taxes during the recent recession were misguided.
- On school meals, Zoe Neuberger described how states and school districts can make school meals more accessible by simplifying their applications.
- On housing, Barbara Sard discussed fact sheets that the Center released on the state-by-state impact of federal rental assistance programs.
In other news, we updated Bob Greenstein’s statement and our report on Chairman Ryan’s budget. We showed that state EITCs help families escape poverty, and we analyzed error issues associated with the federal EITC. We explained the basics of health reform waivers and of applying for unemployment benefits. We examined the impact of Arizona’s TABOR legislation. Finally, we released our top ten tax charts and discussed ways to improve school lunch applications.