FFM Bulletin 10/8/10

Governor Pawlenty earns 'A' from Cato Institute

The Cato Institute recently released their tenth biennial Fiscal Policy Report Card on America’s Governors, evaluating the taxing and spending records of all 50 governors’ since 2008. Governor Tim Pawlenty was one of just four governors nationwide to receive an ‘A’ Grade, tying for the third highest score.
Cato explains Pawlenty’s grade: “He has proposed cutting the state's high and uncompetitive corporate franchise tax, and he has repeatedly vetoed giant tax-hike packages passed by the legislature, including increases to gasoline taxes, beer taxes, wine taxes, and income taxes.”
Pawlenty also earned high marks for his support of a state constitutional amendment that would cap the growth of Minnesota’s state general fund.
Read the Cato Institute’s full report here.
Short Takes

Despite the Obama Administration’s repeated promises that Americans would be able to track how each and every stimulus dollar was spent, there is apparently $162 million in stimulus spending that has gone unreported. Excerpt from USA Today: “Recipients of 352 federal stimulus contracts, grants and loans have failed to report how they spent the money, the status of their projects or how many jobs were funded, according to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).”
Mark Haveman of the Minnesota Taxpayers Association wrote an excellent critique of the state’s local government aid (LGA) program for the Star Tribune. Excerpt: “Today, policy experts are encouraging local governments to explore shared services, consolidation and other forms of cooperation, and the state has created two commissions to support such redesign efforts. Yet, next biennium, the state is forecasted to ship out about $2 billion in aids and credits to all types of local governments, subsidizing and encouraging the status quo.”
The Wall Street Journal’s John Fund suggests that the upcoming midterm elections may look more like 1894 than 1994. Remember to register for FFM’s October 25th Election Preview Event with John Fund.
And finally, FFM’s research on the largely unused $5 million St. Cloud airport was picked up by Power Line and Big Government.


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