How Much Does Government Cost in Iowa?

How Much Does Government Cost in Iowa?

Can you think of any area of your life that is not directly impacted by government? Government, whether at the federal, state, or local level, has grown considerably overtime. The escalating $26 trillion national debt is the most symbolic description of the growth of government.  As more demands are placed …

STICKER SHOCK: Iowa’s High Corporate Tax Rate Deters Growth

STICKER SHOCK: Iowa’s High Corporate Tax Rate Deters Growth

This year, Indiana will once again lower its corporate income tax rate from 5.5 percent to 5.25 percent. Since 2012, Indiana has been gradually lowering the corporate tax rate from 8.5 percent, and the rate will continue to be lowered until it reaches 4.9 percent in 2022. Corporate tax rates …

A Way Forward for State Budgets after COVID-19

A Way Forward for State Budgets after COVID-19

JONATHAN WILLIAMS, SKIP ESTES   Most states close their books for fiscal year 2020 this week and continue to look at the uncertainty ahead. Every state but Vermont has some variety of a balanced budget requirement. Some are far more meaningful than others, but at least some thought goes into presenting …

Spending Restraint: A Conservative Budget

Spending Restraint: A Conservative Budget

Crafting a state budget is never an easy process and this year was especially difficult with drafting a budget amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Prior to the COVID-19 emergency, Iowa was in a strong economic position with healthy and stable revenue growth. By March, all of this changed as the pandemic …

Advancing Freedom with Occupational Licensing Reform

Advancing Freedom with Occupational Licensing Reform

The ability for Iowans to earn a living and those who relocate to Iowa will be greatly improved due to the historic occupational licensing reform passed by the legislature. Governor Kim Reynolds, who made occupational licensing reform a priority in her Condition of the State address, is expected to sign …

Uncle Sam’s “Free” Handouts

Uncle Sam’s “Free” Handouts

Iowa, just as with other states, has become dependent on the federal government for support. Iowa’s $7.6 billion state budget is dependent on the equivalent in federal aid to help fund numerous programs. Through these funds, the federal government can impose both funded and unfunded mandates on the states.  This …

Tough Budget Decisions Ahead

Tough Budget Decisions Ahead

Iowa’s economy is reopening, but the economic impact of COVID-19 (coronavirus) is still uncertain. Iowa’s April unemployment rate was 10.2 percent because of business closures resulting from social distancing policies used to mitigate the virus. The economic impact of COVID-19 is still a fluid situation. One of the uncertainties is …

Small Business Recovery after COVID-19

Small Business Recovery after COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic is precipitating an unprecedented economic downturn, and small businesses are likely to bear the brunt of it. Mandatory shutdowns and social distancing are forcing many small businesses to shut their doors, leaving millions of people out of work and driving down sales. Even when governments begin lifting …

Iowa Revenue Source

Iowa Revenue Source

Do you know that the income taxes you pay to the state of Iowa makes up the majority of the General Fund budget? Iowa’s General Fund is supported not just by income taxes, but also sales and a variety of other taxes, fees, and revenue sources. In addition, the budget …

Methods to Economic Recovery

Methods to Economic Recovery

Iowa’s economy is in a recession marked by high unemployment, not seen since the Great Depression of the 1930s. Iowa’s economic crisis is a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19), which has  forced an economic shutdown of the state. Low commodity prices are also having a detrimental impact on the farming …

American History’s Educational Decline

American History’s Educational Decline

“I’m warning of an eradication of the American memory that could result, ultimately, in an erosion of the American spirit. Let’s start with some basics: more attention to American history and a greater emphasis on civic ritual,” stated President Ronald Reagan in his Farewell Address to the nation. President Reagan’s …

Uncle Sam to the Rescue?

Uncle Sam to the Rescue?

David Kennedy, prominent historian and Stanford University professor, in an interview with Governing discussed the COVID-19 (coronavirus) emergency in relation to the Great Depression. In that interview he stated, “[President] Calvin Coolidge said that if the federal government went out of business, the average person wouldn’t notice for six months, except for the post office. Now, the federal government is …

THE ECONOMIC IMPACT OF COVID-19 ON THE IOWA ECONOMY: EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

Executive Summary   As of April 24, the CDC calculates that COVID-19 has generated 24,555 U.S. deaths and 48 Iowa casualties. Per 1,000,000 in population, this represents 75 deaths for the nation and a much lower 15 for Iowa. Due to COVID-19, the U.S. economy contracted by 4.8% in Q1, …