Budget Process Changes or Trigger Mechanisms Can Not Substitute for Political Will

Submitted by jgordon on Thu, 11/30/2017 - 16:42
There is no shortage of proposals in Congress and in academia for improving the federal budget process. Given that the process has remained essentially unchanged since 1974, it may well be overdue for a facelift. Many of these proposals, such as biennial budgeting, could refocus lawmakers’ attention on long-term thinking. Others would create long-term fiscal targets and automatic mechanisms to enforce them.

Tax Cut Numbers Don't Add Up

Submitted by swinn on Mon, 11/20/2017 - 10:12

This op-ed by Concord Coalition Executive Director Robert L. Bixby discusses some of the problems with the House and Senate tax bills. The article was originally published this week in Seacoast Sunday.

 

Republicans in the House and Senate are now debating their respective $1.5 trillion tax cut plans, which must be combined into one bill and passed by both chambers before going to President Trump for his consideration.

Proposed Tax Legislation Falls Short of Needed Reform

Submitted by swinn on Thu, 11/16/2017 - 14:59

This op-ed by Concord Coalition Executive Director Robert L. Bixby argues that both the tax bill passed Thursday by the House and legislation under consideration in the Senate fall short of true reform. The column originally appeared this week in the Daily Times Herald (Carroll, Iowa).

Everyone in Washington agrees that the federal tax system needs substantial reform.

Entitlement Reform Should Reduce Subsidies for Those Who Don't Need Them

Submitted by jgordon on Tue, 11/14/2017 - 07:50
Individuals with the least wealth or income potential are the most dependent on government programs for support. Thus, when policymakers talk about reforming entitlement programs, many observers are concerned about the potential impact on these vulnerable groups. The good news is that there are plenty of responsible ways to reduce costs without unduly burdening beneficiaries.

New Study Highlights State Budget Problems

Submitted by swinn on Mon, 11/13/2017 - 09:36

When state and local governments run into serious financial problems, they often turn to Washington in search of possible solutions. So with the federal government already on an unsustainable fiscal path, a new report raises troubling questions about many state budget practices around the country.

The report expressed particular concern about “legacy costs,” which include retirement obligations for public employees and retiree health care.

Tax Bills Based on Unsound Economics, Unwise Fiscal Policy

Submitted by swinn on Fri, 11/10/2017 - 15:04

WASHINGTON -- With the House and Senate now considering separate plans to overhaul the tax code, The Concord Coalition urges lawmakers to reconsider their current approaches, notably the idea of deficit-financed tax cuts.

Concord Coalition Celebrates 25th Anniversary With Iowa Trip

Submitted by ahunt on Mon, 11/06/2017 - 14:35

On October 10 several members of The Concord Coalition convened in Iowa to host events and meet with stakeholders and media, kicking off the 2020 presidential cycle and celebrating the Concord Coalition's 25th Anniversary. The Concord Coalition has hosted a series of events to mark 25 years of advocating for fiscal reform, including events in Washington, D.C.; Manchester and New London, New Hampshire; Concord, Massachusetts; and Des Moines, Iowa.

West Des Moines Rotary Club

Changes in Borrowing Costs Can Have a Dramatic Impact on the Federal Budget

Submitted by jgordon on Thu, 11/02/2017 - 15:13
The federal government, like all entities that borrow money, pays for the privilege of doing so in the form of interest. A growing national debt therefore places a greater burden on the federal budget in the form of rising interest costs. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projects that under current laws, over the next decade the government will spend over $5 trillion solely to pay the interest costs for past borrowing.

Concord Coalition Says Tax Plan Is Fiscally Irresponsible

Submitted by jgordon on Thu, 11/02/2017 - 14:38

WASHINGTON -- The Concord Coalition warned that the tax plan released today by the House Ways and Means Committee is fiscally irresponsible and would create even higher federal deficits than are already projected for the coming decade.

“True tax reform should aim to grow the economy without growing the debt ” said Robert L. Bixby, Concord’s executive director. “This plan would move U.S. fiscal policy in a dangerous direction, openly inviting higher deficits in the face of unsustainable debt.”

Tax Overhaul Concerns

Submitted by swinn on Mon, 10/30/2017 - 13:45

House Republican leaders are scheduled to unveil specifics of their tax overhaul plan this week, a plan that Republicans hope to push through Congress in a matter of weeks. While the inefficient, overly complex tax code has long needed reform, there are several big concerns about the current effort:

1. Republicans should rethink their plans to increase the federal deficit to finance the tax cuts.