Research Roundup 4/20: Eliminating State Income Taxes, Skyrocketing CEO Pay, Immigration and Labor Rights, and More

Strategies to Address the State Tax Volatility Problem: Eliminating the State Income Tax Not a Solution [Center on Budget and Policy Priorities]
"State revenues plummet in recessions, just when states can least afford the loss.  Some proposals to address this flaw in state tax systems would change the systems’ structure — for instance, by replacing state personal income taxes with sales taxes — but wouldn’t solve the problem and would exacerbate others in state tax systems.  States have to balance their annual budgets so they cannot just run up debt during recessions, but they could better address revenue volatility with such strategies as stronger reserve funds and better mechanisms for managing budget surpluses."

Executive Paywatch [AFL-CIO]
"In the past few decades, CEO pay has skyrocketed while the average worker’s pay has stagnated despite increases in productivity. Multinational corporations park their profits overseas and shirk their responsibilities as taxpayers. The middle class is dwindling and more and more working people are living hand-to-mouth. Learn more about the pervasive inequality in the United States and spread the word."

Workers’ Rights on ICE: How Immigration Reform Can Stop Retaliation and Advance Labor Rights [National Employment Law Project]
"The National Employment Law Project (NELP) has prepared this analysis and offers the stories of immigrant workers to underscore the importance of ensuring workplace protections for all who work in the United States, regardless of status, and to emphasize the critical need for a broad pathway to citizenship. Such protections will benefit all workers by raising workplace standards and removing rewards for employers who abuse workers for their own gain."

Fresh Start: The Impact of Public Financing in Connecticut [Demos]
"This report looks at the impact public financing has had on campaigning, the legislative process, policy outcomes, and the dynamics of the legislature. While only a few electoral cycles in, it is clear that public financing is a fundamental step towards a more representative legislative process that is more responsive to constituents."

Valuing Good Health in Vermont: The Costs and Benefits of Earned Health Care Time [Institute for Women's Policy Research]
This analysis estimates cost-savings associated with paid sick days in Vermont, "through reduced turnover, reduced spread of contagious disease in the workplace, prevention of productivity losses from employees working while sick, minimized nursing-home stays, and reduced norovirus outbreaks in nursing homes."

Texas on the Brink [Texas Legislative Study Group]
"In Texas today, the American dream is distant. Texas has the highest percentage of uninsured adults in the nation. Texas is dead last in percentage of high school graduates. Our state generates more hazardous waste and carbon dioxide emissions than any other state in our nation. If we do not change course, for the first time in our history, the Texas generation of tomorrow will be less prosperous than the generation of today."


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(This article originally appeared in the Stateside Dispatch, Progressive States Network's email roundup of the latest state policy news. Read the full Dispatch here or Sign up to receive the Dispatch in your inbox here.)