Hot Air: Beebe and Nordex Fail to Keep Lofty Promises, Taxpayers Left Holding the Bag

Beebe nordex

Less than five years ago, the possibilities seemed endless. Nordex USA had just announced its intention to move to Arkansas and create hundreds of new jobs. The age of renewable energy was finally here -- and it was going to lift Arkansans out of poverty and into prosperity. Arkansas would finally be the “land of opportunity.” Heck, we might even change the state motto back! You see, Nordex wasn’t just promising jobs -- they (and Governor Beebe) were promising careers. In fact, that’s what their … [Read more...]

Et Tu, Republicans? No Meaningful Tax Cuts For Arkansans

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For many weeks, the people of Arkansas have been led to believe that once the legislature passed Medicaid expansion, it would then produce significant tax relief. We have documented these assurances in our previous coverage -- and repeatedly emphasized that the cuts were in no way linked to Medicaid expansion as a matter of policy, but perhaps only as a matter of politics. Boy, were we right. As you probably know, the Senate signed off on funding for Medicaid expansion yesterday, signaling … [Read more...]

Raising the Minimum Wage: Unfair to Working Students And Still a Bad Idea

money

The House Public Health Committee is slated to take up Rep. Butch Wilkins’s minimum wage hike tomorrow morning. The proposal would raise the state’s minimum wage from $6.25 to $8.25 -- unless you’re a full-time student who works less than 20 hours a week. Under current law, these students are only entitled to 85% of minimum wage -- Rep. Wilkins’s bill would cut that percentage by 20 points, down to 65%. What would the real effect be for working full-time students? Let’s do some … [Read more...]

Why Hiking the Minimum Wage is Bad for Everyone

minimum wage

This week, state Representative Butch Wilkins introduced a bill to increase the government-mandated minimum wage from $6.25 to $8.25 per hour -- an increase of 32%. Raising the minimum wage is one of those ideas that sounds great as long as you don’t think about it very much. Perhaps the most immediate consequence for Arkansans will be the artificial spike in prices on consumer goods. How many of you would like to pay 32% more for your meals? But of course you won’t pay exactly 32% more for … [Read more...]

Congress, Your Grades Are Posted

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Yesterday, Americans For Prosperity released their "Economic Freedom Scorecard." Quite simply, the group ranks all 535 members of Congress based on their votes regarding economic freedom: The 112th Congress Scorecard includes critical votes on such issues as the repeal of President Obama’s new health care law, preempting EPA’s purported authority to regulate greenhouse gases, supporting Chairman Paul Ryan’s budget, ending ethanol subsidies, several Congressional Review Act resolutions to … [Read more...]

Steve Moore is Coming to Little Rock!

MAYS-MOORE

Those thinkers over at Advance Arkansas Institute pass along this exciting announcement about an event next week in Little Rock: WHO: Stephen Moore of The Wall Street Journal, brought to you by Advance Arkansas Institute! WHEN: 11:30a to 12:30p, February 7th, 2013 WHERE: Arkansas Association of Counties (1415 West 3rd Street) Admission is free of charge! We ask that you register in advance through Eventbrite. Lunch can be purchased for $5 if you register in advance. BUT WAIT, … [Read more...]

Give Freedom a Chance: New Report Shows Arkansas 43rd in Economic Freedom

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Last week, Fraser Institute released their annual Economic Freedom of North America report. They use numbers and pictures and stuff that shows how quickly we are transforming into a European-style socialist utopia. Turns out, it’s happening pretty fast (and trust me, these people know what they’re talking about -- they’re Canadian). The report -- which includes 10 Canadian provinces -- ranked Arkansas #51 overall in economic freedom or 43rd among the American states, putting us in the bottom … [Read more...]

Wood You Believe It: How Bureaucrats Are Splintering Economic Growth in Arkansas

AR Trees

Readers of this blog are familiar with the waste of millions of taxpayer dollars at Governor Mike Beebe’s Solyndra, LM Wind Power. The cronyism, mismanagement, and lack of accountability there is breathtaking. These concerns are not simply economic, but political and philosophical: for instance, what message is this favoritism sending to other Arkansas businesses that do not receive the same preferable treatment? Shouldn’t they be outraged that the state isn’t paying for their projects? And now … [Read more...]