From the Bluegrass Institute Scholars – It’s Tax Day 2015: Flat tax policy eliminates ‘expensive loopholes,’ lower rates for most

By D. Eric Schansberg, Ph.D. We pay taxes every day. But for many people, April 15 represents “Tax Day” – the day when our income tax forms are due. Many people file their 1040s sooner, particularly when they’re receiving refunds. They have allowed the government to keep too much of their money all year. So…

From the Bluegrass Institute Board of Scholars – Getting serious about education reform: Empower principals and parents

By Gary W. Houchens, Ph.D. Bluegrass Institute Scholar Kentuckians are concerned about the quality of their schools and so, like many other states, the commonwealth has focused a lot of attention recently on improving its teacher evaluation system. Research is clear that the quality of the classroom teacher is one of the single biggest contributors…

Right-to-work update: Ten percent of Kentucky counties now providing workers the freedom to choose

Monroe recently became the 12th Kentucky county to pass a local right-to-work law. State Rep. Bart Rowland, R-Tompkinsville, told JPI News that the actions taken by counties “helps legislators realize that local communities want right-to-work and Kentuckians want right-to-work and that it’s not just a Republican issue.” More than 100 votes have now been cast…

Bluegrass Beacon: Hopeful rhetoric adorns wall of school-choice obstructionism

House Education Committee Chairman Derrick Graham’s recent op-ed reveals his clear understanding of Kentucky’s education deficiencies. Graham, D-Frankfort, is well aware of the “persistent disparities in performance between groups of students, especially those defined as minorities, disabled or low-income.” He eloquently addresses how “students caught in the achievement gap are disproportionately from African-American, Latino and…

LTE: Broadband building best left to private companies

The following Letter to the Editor was written by former Bluegrass Institute/Koch summer intern Elaina Waters and published in Saturday’s Lexington Herald-Leader. It offers a free-market perspective on government-owned broadband networks. For more on this issue, check out this recent Bluegrass Beacon column on why Lexington’s proposal to build and operate a government-owned broadband network…

Broadband by bureaucrats: High costs of high-speed failure

While some in the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government consider it fashionable to build and operate a broadband network at taxpayers’ expense, citizens who take a moment to look at the price tag of similar outfits in other places should at least do some more price shopping before heading to the register. They may also want…

Bluegrass Beacon: Magazine’s award no reason to pop bubbly

Gov. Steve Beshear and Frankfort’s economic-development leaders celebrated a recent award by Site Selection magazine for being the state with the “most new projects per capita” last year. Any economic progress is commendable – especially considering Kentucky has myriad business-unfriendly policies. But is this award a reason to burst out the bubbly and – as…

Quote of the day: Economic developers ‘significantly hampered’

“We, as economic developers, are asked to do a job, yet we are significantly hampered by Kentucky’s non right-to-work status. We have significant competition already from other Midwestern and Southern states to attract international and domestic manufacturing opportunities. … Estimates from site-selection experts indicate that anywhere from one-third to half of all manufacturing projects do…