July 31, 2007
Kentucky did its part
July 26, 2007
Hotties on the HillNancy Pelosi? a hottie on Capitol Hill?
While the General Assembly hurries to hand out tax breaks to one company, how about one for the rest of us?
What's most troubling about this upcoming special session is that the General Assembly is willing to waste hundreds of millions of dollars on various vetoed projects in order to merely be able to spend $300-million in tax breaks for one company. After that, I expect Peabody will hope for more handouts for construction costs and other benefits merely for staying in the state.
If Kentucky's economic development policy is little more than a series of handouts to companies that "might leave" without the handout or "might not come" without the handout, taxpayers are getting a raw deal.
Here's an idea: Don't spend either amount of money. Have a special session to cut several more projects. Use the savings for tax cuts and debt retirement and go home. Guess what, that's a better economic development policy.
July 25, 2007
It's interesting that a story that deals with the financial crunch faced by a particular school district contains absolutely no information about how the district's students perform academically.
And the only stick that KDE can really wave in front of schools is the idea of a "state takeover" for financial mismanagement. Abysmal student academic performance, at least in this case, is not a sufficient pretext for taking over a school.
Luckily, Dick Innes has looked at how well schools perform academically per dollar spent to do it. Ludlow High School ranks near the bottom for student performance on the ACT per dollar spent, even after you control for poverty (% of students in free/reduced lunch programs).
It means that the vast majority of high schools get more performance on the ACT per dollar than Ludlow does.
July 24, 2007
July 21, 2007
Quit subsidizing business
Cut their taxes instead.
From the Courier-Journal:
Twenty technology companies from across Kentucky, including nine with ties to Oldham and Jefferson counties, stand to receive almost $1.9 million in state funding for start-up activities.
Potentia Pharmaceuticals, at Jefferson and Brook streets in downtown Louisville, will use its share of the money to test new delivery methods for a drug that treats macular degeneration, a leading cause of blindness.
Some of the companies are as follows:
Naprogenix, a biotechnology company that works with plants for potential uses as pharmaceuticals and agrochemicals. It has headquarters in Louisville and research facilities in Lexington.
SureGene, a molecular diagnostic company that targets schizophrenia, bipolar and related mental illnesses.
ApoImmune, a biotechnology company intent on becoming a world leader in developing therapeutic vaccines for cancer.
SCR, which has developed a device to treat patients experiencing late-stage heart failure.
Regenerex, which works to improve the safety of bone marrow transplant therapy.
Hosting.com, which provides Web hosting, disaster recovery and other services.
Scout Diagnostics, based in Lexington, is commercializing a test kit to detect Alzheimer's disease. Its founder and chief executive, John Beran, lives in Middletown.
Kentucky is giving money to companies that should be welcomed to our state with low taxes and a vibrant workforce. You get the workforce, in part, by lowering personal income taxes, too. Taxes are a very real component of cost of living. Cost of living is a very real factor in where people decide to live.