What’s up this week at Oklahoma Policy Institute? The Weekly Wonk is dedicated to this week’s events, publications, and blog posts.
This week OK Policy explained what federal budget cuts could mean for Oklahoma. Doug Hall of the Economic Policy Institute underscored the urgency of fixing America’s crumbling infrastructure. Our director David Blatt spoke at a StateImpact Oklahoma forum about why proposals to reduce or eliminate the income tax would effectively raise taxes for most Oklahomans.
Also this week, we featured remarks by Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley on how health care reform improves business competitiveness. We posted event information about the first annual Grandparenting Workshop at Oklahoma State University.
- $107 – Average tax increase on sixty percent of Oklahoma households under a legislative proposal to eliminate a slate of broad-based tax credits and exemptions.
- 8,600 – Number of jobs lost in state and local government in Oklahoma over 2010.
- $22,007 – Annual average wage for home health aides in Oklahoma, just below the federal poverty level for a family of four in 2010, $22,050
- 11 percent – Percentage of ex-offenders released in Oklahoma who were re-incarcerated for technical violations of their probation/parole in 2004, up from 3 percent in 1999.
- $34 million – Amount needed to repair sewer lines and make major improvements to two facilities slated for closure that house medically fragile, mentally disabled Oklahoma residents.
In The Know, Policy Notes
- The Center for Economic and Policy Research shares five reasons we should be concerned about the rising share of low-wage work.
- Touchstone examines the austerity curve, or the point at which cutting government spending becomes self-defeating because it lowers growth, depresses tax revenues, and pushes up social security spending by more than the government is cutting.
- The Century Foundation shares a series of graphs that bust the myths about food stamps.
- The Kaiser Family Foundation released their annual survey of employer health benefits, with a detailed look at trends in employer-sponsored health coverage.