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Examines the roles immigrant-serving nonprofits play in facilitating integration. Surveys programs and services, geographic and ethnic distribution, composition of personnel, sources of funding and support, impact of policy environments, and challenges.
American University School of Communications;
Compares broadband service performance and pricing in terms of connection speed and cost of one megabit per second in the Washington, D.C. area by provider and geographical area. Lists speeds recommended in the FCC's National Broadband Plan.
Northern and southeastern Virginians will vote in referenda this November to approve or reject increases in the retail sales tax to fund transportation projects. Northern Virginians will decide whether to increase the sales tax from 4.5 percent to 5.0 percent, an 11 percent increase. Virginians in the Hampton Roads area will decide whether to increase the sales tax from 4.5 percent to 5.5 percent, a 22 percent increase. Proponents of tax increases point to unmet transportation needs to support their cause. Yet state spending increased 13 percent in 1999, 7 percent in 2000, and 9 percent in 2001. If key transportation needs have not been met, the problem is not a lack of funds but legislators who have not properly prioritized the budget. If the sales tax referenda are passed, the state government will have a strong incentive to reduce what it would otherwise spend on transportation in northern Virginia and Hampton Roads. By some measures, northern Virginia already gets the short end of the stick with regard to the state budget. Tax increases are not just bad budget policy; they are also bad economic policy. Since higher taxes reduce economic growth, an added cost of higher sales taxes would be lower incomes for Virginians. During the 1990s Virginia taxes grew faster than incomes, and local property taxes have soared recently. Even modest restraint in nontransportation spending could save enough money to fund priority highway projects without tax increases. Further, the state could adopt a spending growth cap that channels excess future tax revenues to transportation needs and tax cuts.
National Council of Nonprofits;
This report summarizes the most recent available data on Virginia's nonprofits and illustrates the significant role this sector plays. Much attention is given to the condition of government and business in the Commonwealth, but let's not forget that nonprofits fill a critical role as a third and independent sector. The primary source for this data are fiscal year annual reports filed with the IRS by charitable nonprofits with over $25,000 in gross annual receipts. The data in this report was released in June 2007 by the National Center for Charitable Statistics. Data is based on information from 2006 IRS Form 990 filings, detailing 2005 activities.
Colorado Trust, The;
This Issue Brief, authored by Charles Bruner, PhD, Executive Director of the Child and Family Policy Center, highlights how the health system can help to improve children's healthy development and school readiness, and how policies can help ensure that young children receive preventive and developmental health care.
Transportation for America;
In 2015, Congress will once again debate transportation funding at the federal level. It would be in the best interests of the nation for them to fix the perpetual shortfalls in the Highway Trust Fund and set the country on a path toward a 21st century infrastructure. It is important to note that all of the states that have acted thus far, and those working to do so this year or beyond, are doing so in expectation of ongoing federal support.
Governors and legislators have acted because states face growing needs and static or falling revenues. The situation has been made worse by federal funding that has remained flat as costs have risen, and could grow disastrously worse should Congress reduce federal support in the upcoming renewal of the national program.
Regardless of what happens in Washington, states know that Congress will never appropriate enough support to close the gap needed to address maintenance backlogs and build for the future. Governors and legislators recognize that they can be leaders on this issue, working across party lines, generating new funding mechanisms, and creating new coalitions in support of transportation investment. The strategies and examples discussed in this report are intended to be a helpful guide for those emerging leaders as they navigate the unique context of their own individual states to pass transportation revenue legislation, and in turn, set an example for others to follow in the future.
World Resources Institute (WRI);
In August 2015, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized the Clean Power Plan (CPP), the first-ever carbon pollution standards for existing power plants. The CPP builds on progress already under way to move the country toward a cleaner electricity system, including rapidly falling prices of renewables and increased deployment of moneysaving energy efficiency measures. The plan enables states to use a wide range of options to meet their standards, such as existing clean energy policies and power plants (the focus of this analysis), other tools to cut electricity use and increase the use of renewables, and broader initiatives such as participation in a capand- trade program or use of a carbon tax.
This fact sheet examines how Virginia can use its existing policies and infrastructure to meet its emission standards under the Clean Power Plan while minimizing compliance costs, ensuring reliability, and harnessing economic opportunities.
This report is part of a series of 21 state and regional studies examining the rollout of the ACA. The national network -- with 36 states and 61 researchers -- is led by the Rockefeller Institute of Government, the public policy research arm of the State University of New York, the Brookings Institution, and the Fels Institute of Government at the University of Pennsylvania.
By and large, Virginia opponents of the Affordable Care Act have been able to thwart full implementation at the state level. This can be seen in Virginia's decision to default to a federally facilitated marketplace and refusal to close the coverage gap. Having control of the executive branch and legislature until 2014 allowed lawmakers to minimize the impacts of the ACA, implementing only what was legally required of them and ignoring calls from advocates for low-income people who called for fuller implementation.
There remains the possibility for significant changes, including the structure and functioning of the marketplace as well as closing the coverage gap that would alter the state and national policy landscape. There remains serious debate about if and how Virginia will close the coverage gap. If Virginia moved forward, nearly 400,000 Virginians could get access to quality, affordable health care. Moreover, some advocates have asserted that Virginia could be the linchpin in opening up the South to Medicaid expansion.
Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED);
The Assets & Opportunity Scorecard is a comprehensive look at Americans' financial security today and their opportunities to create a more prosperous future. It assesses the 50 states and the District of Columbia on 130 outcome and policy measures, which describe how well residents are faring and what states are doing to help them build and protect assets. The Scorecard enables states to benchmark their outcomes and policies against other states in five issue areas: Financial Assets & Income, Businesses & Jobs, Housing & Homeownership, Health Care, and Education.
Volcker Alliance, The;
This report builds on the work of the State Budget Crisis Task Force, chaired by Volcker Alliance founder Paul A. Volcker and board member Richard Ravitch, from 2011 to 2014. In sounding the alarm, the task force warned that the cash-based budgeting practices most states and municipalities use facilitate "gimmicks and short-term measures that obscure actual financial conditions."
In this report, we revisited in more detail three states (California, New Jersey, and Virginia) of the six in the original study to learn if their budgetary practices were responding to the revenue growth provided by a recovering economy. The good news is that California has adopted a number of improved budgeting practices. That has helped the state win four upgrades of its general obligation from Moody's Investors Service, Standard & Poor's, and Fitch Ratings since 2013. Virginia, which has a history of more-careful budget management practices, has enacted substantial pension reforms but has struggled with underperforming revenues. In New Jersey, large gaps remain in pension and other programs.
A primary aim of this preliminary study is to lay the groundwork for a common approach toward responsible budget practices in all 50 states. A continuing comparative analysis should provide a framework for a scorecard with respect to budgeting and financing practices. By shining a spotlight on opaque and confusing practices and by identifying more-appropriate approaches, we hope to provide incentives for officials to clarify financial issues and encourage debate on basic policy choices. We hope to engage academic institutions in this effort by tapping their scholarly expertise, encouraging research on more-effective budgeting practices, and preparing more students for work in government budgeting at all levels.
Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law;
Many states are imposing new and often onerous "user fees" on individuals with criminal convictions. Yet far from being easy money, these fees impose severe - and often hidden - costs on communities, taxpayers, and indigent people convicted of crimes. They create new paths to prison for those unable to pay their debts and make it harder to find employment and housing as well as to meet child support obligations.
This report examines practices in teh fifteen states with the highest prison populations, which together account for more than 60 percent of all state criminal filings. It focuses primarily on the proliferation of "user fees," financial obligations imposed not for any traditional criminal justice purpose such as punishment, deterrence, or rehabilitation but rather to fund tight state budgets.
Across the board, it was found that states are introducing new user fees, raising the dollar amounts of existing fees, and intensifying the collection of fees and other forms of criminal justice debt such as fines and restitution. But in the rush to collect, made all the more intense by the fiscal crises in many states, no one is considering the ways in which the resulting debt can undermine reentry prospects, pave the way back to prison or jail, and result in yet more costs to the public.