A Successful Northeastern Regional Tax and Economic Policy Academy
This week, ALEC hosted the Northeastern Regional Tax and Economic Policy Academy. This three-day event brought together state legislators from across the region to learn about pro-growth tax and fiscal policy.
The ALEC staff kicked off the event with a panel featuring the Center for State Fiscal Reform team, Sarah Wall from ALEC’s membership team and Commerce, Insurance and Economic Development Task Force Director Gretchen Baldau. The staff shared ALEC policy research and member resources, including the State Budget Reform Toolkit and the Center for State Fiscal Reform’s Unaccountable and Unaffordable, Other Post-Employment Benefits and State Bonded Obligations.
The next day started bright and early with economist Stephen Moore. He gave an update on the dangerous proposals contained in the 2500-page reconciliation package making its way through Congress.
The Reason Foundation’s Ryan Frost then gave a presentation on the challenges of and solutions to the state pension crisis. Dr. John Merrifield followed, detailing his efforts on the Friedman Fiscal Rules Project with Dr. Barry Poulson. He outlined how tax and expenditure limits (TELs) work and explained how TELs can reduce the growth of government spending and tax burdens.
Dr. Merrifield was followed by a panel on energy policy developments at the federal and state levels. The panel featured Clint Woods of Americans for Prosperity and Dave Stephenson of the Caesar Rodney Institute.
In the afternoon, ALEC Chief Economist and Executive Vice President of Policy Jonathan Williams presented findings from the ALEC state economic competitiveness report Rich States, Poor States. He discussed different state rankings from across the northeast and demonstrated the “Adjust Policies” tool on the Rich States, Poor States website.
The final presentation of the day was by Senator Patricia Rucker of West Virginia. Senator Rucker gave a captivating account of her battle to implement school choice in West Virginia.
Closing out was a roundtable with the attendees on what policy issues they are focused on in their respective states and what they will take home with them from the Academy.
The three days were jam-packed with presentations, discussions and knowledge sharing. After the academy, the legislators returned to their respective districts with fresh ideas and renewed inspiration on pro-growth tax and economic policy.