Unions Improve Public Budgets and Increase Voter Turnout

Two January 2018 working papers find that unions have important social impacts in America. The first finds that union members individually contribute about $1,300 more per year to public budgets than non-union workers. The second finds that so-called “right-to-work” laws reduce voter turnout by 2-3 percentage points because working-class Americans are less likely to be contacted through union get-out-the-vote efforts. These studies have important policy implications. Continue reading “Unions Improve Public Budgets and Increase Voter Turnout”

Public Universities and Community Colleges Boost the Illinois Economy by $16 Billion Every Year

A recent report by the Illinois Economic Policy Institute (ILEPI) and the Project for Middle Class Renewal at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (PMCR) assesses the positive economic impacts of public universities and colleges in Illinois and measures the costs of the two-year budget impasse.  Continue reading “Public Universities and Community Colleges Boost the Illinois Economy by $16 Billion Every Year”

Tax Dollars Should Be Spent on Broad-Based Investments, Not Corporate Subsidies

Illinois has spent at least $4.9 billion in state and local business subsidies since 2000, after adjusting for inflation. This equates to $288.5 million per year. While these subsidies have saved or created some jobs in the state, Illinois could have created even more jobs and more economic growth if tax dollars had instead been invested in public infrastructure and public education.

Continue reading “Tax Dollars Should Be Spent on Broad-Based Investments, Not Corporate Subsidies”