Archive for September 2017

While Minnesota Reinvests, Wisconsin Disinvests

Tax cuts enacted in the Badger State in recent years have contributed to a more regressive tax system and recurring revenue shortfalls, as noted in the preceding article in this series. Meanwhile, tax increases in Minnesota have not only made the tax system less regressive, but also helped to produce a significant surplus after years…

Read More

The Connection Between Public Policy and Prosperity

Since the end of the Great Recession, Minnesota has comfortably surpassed Wisconsin in terms of GDP and income growth, and job creation. Based on newly released 2016 data from the American Community Survey, median household income in the Gopher State is 15.5 percent ($8,800) greater than in America’s Dairyland. Caution is in order when drawing…

Read More

Sex Education: Abstinence Only Doesn’t Fit the Bill

Class teacher desk

We recently started a series of articles to explain health care jargon and contextualize the information so all Minnesotans can engage in the broader discussion about health care. The previous article in the series described the current state of women’s health access and abortion in Minnesota. Comprehensive sex education is so important, because it helps…

Read More

Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

The education achievement gap in Minnesota is a real and persistent problem. For example, the 2016 graduation rate among black students was 22 percent below that of white students, while the rate among American Indian students was 35.5 percent below. While the gap in graduation rates has narrowed in recent years, it is still large…

Read More

We’re Hiring! Become Our Next Executive Director!

Want to lead an awesome progressive think tank? We’ve got the job for you! About North Star North Star Policy Institute was launched in 2016 by local policy leaders troubled by conservative efforts to dominate the public policy conversation in Minnesota. The conservative movement has succeeded in cultivating an extensive network of think tanks, advocacy…

Read More

Women’s Health and Abortion in Minnesota

St. Paul family planning clinic Planned Parenthood

We recently started a series of articles to explain health care jargon and contextualize the information so all Minnesotans can engage in the broader discussion about health care. The previous article in the series described the history of health insurance in the United States and Minnesota. There is an abundance of misinformation regarding women’s health…

Read More

Income Inequality, Tax Regressivity are Worse Than We Thought

There has long been convincing evidence—both at the state and national levels—that income inequality has accelerated in recent decades, with an increasing share of wealth concentrated in fewer and fewer hands. Extreme income inequality—coupled with stagnant or declining real wages—undermines a consumer economy, since working families are less able to purchase the goods and services…

Read More

Minnesota Population Growth Through 2050

No one knows what the future will bring, but the experts at the Minnesota State Demographic Center have made some informed predictions as to where Minnesota population growth—and decline—will be occurring over the next several decades. To some extent, projected patterns of Minnesota population change resemble historical patterns observed since 1950 (which were summarized in…

Read More

A Brief History of Insurance

LBJ Medicare Medicaid

Last week, we started a series of articles to explain health care jargon and contextualize the information so all Minnesotans can engage in the discussion. The first article in the series covered health centers that cover Minnesotans who need care the most. The largest policy debate happening in the health care world right now is…

Read More

School Aid: Halfway Back to 2003

Over the last fifteen years, trends in state aid to Minnesota school districts can be framed as a tale of two time periods: from fiscal year (FY) 2003 to 2012, real (i.e., inflation-adjusted) per pupil state aid to Minnesota school districts fell sharply; since FY 2012—and especially since FY 2014—real per pupil state aid is…

Read More