Q & A With Philip Mattera: Tens of Billions in State and Local Subsidies Annually Go to Big Business

States and local governments strike deals with corporations all the time – deals that normal people like you and I would have a hard time getting and deals that often deprive our governments of revenue even as promises of job creation often disappoint. These tax breaks, publicly funded cash incentives, free buildings, and worker training are done in the name of keeping or wooing businesses. Until relatively recently, the public mostly knew about these subsidies on an anecdotal basis.

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Sequestration Report Highlights Detriments of Budgeting by Crisis

Across-the-board budget cuts in fiscal year 2013 affected the ability of agencies to serve the public. In response to these automatic cuts – triggered by the Budget Control Act of 2011 and a lack of consensus regarding changes in spending and revenue policies – agencies were forced to retrofit their budgets to fit these constraints mid-year.

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Emergency Unemployment Benefits: Ways to Take Action

After posting “Emergency Unemployment Benefits Are Not Forgotten” on our blog on Feb. 26, the Center for Effective Government received close to 100,000 page views and over 1,500 comments. Many of those who posted comments were people who had seen their emergency unemployment benefits cut and who are struggling to keep their lives together.

There is still a jobs crisis in this country, and the individuals who wrote to us are on its front lines.

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Years After Fatal Bridge Collapse, A Lack of Investment in Infrastructure

Investment in bridges continues to fall well short of needs, despite widespread agreement that our national bridge infrastructure is failing and in desperate need of attention. Unfortunately, the problem is often ignored until it is already too late, putting lives at risk and ultimately costing more money in the long run because of the economic costs of decaying infrastructure.

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Reimagining Government: Protecting Homeless Citizens from Severe Weather

During the recent bitter cold snap that gripped much of the country, civic leaders in Washington D.C.'s Department of Human Services extended the hours at existing homeless shelters, opened additional warming stations, and then got creative. The department partnered with the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) to borrow Metro buses to use as mobile warming shelters.

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New Senate Report Shows Credit Suisse Aiding Tax Evasion, Draws Bipartisan Anger

Partisanship was noticably absent from last week‘s Senate hearing on efforts by a Swiss bank to profit by aiding U.S. tax evasion. Senators from both sides of the aisle were united in condemning the actions of executives from Credit Suisse. 

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Oscar Winners: “We’d Like to Thank the Taxpayers”

Making movies costs a lot of money, but the average taxpayer, while tuning into the Oscars, isn’t likely to expect a thank you. Imagine how that would sound:

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Emergency Unemployment Benefits Are Not Forgotten

As politicians have shifted their focus to a discussion of minimum wage this spring, addressing the December expiration of emergency unemployment benefits, retroactively, appeared increasingly difficult. However, the Senate now appears ready to raise the issue, again, nearly two months after the emergency benefits expired.

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Boeing CEO Made More than President and 132 Other Top Federal Officials COMBINED

Last week, we wrote a blog post highlighting the fact that last year, Boeing paid no federal corporate income taxes despite benefiting from more than $20 billion in taxpayer-funded contracts.  In the post, we mentioned that Boeing CEO W. James McNerney, Jr. took home $27,484,138 in pay in 2012, the most recent year for which pay data was available.

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Is the Federal Government Failing to Save $67 Billion? Congress Should Look in the Mirror

Many members of Congress have taken to social media this week pushing a stat that says the federal government is failing to implement some 17,000 recommendations from inspectors general that could - in total - save an estimated $67 billion a year. The stat is based on a report issued by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee last March.

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