Playing the Long Game: How to Think About the Arizona Flat Tax Proposal

As the Arizona legislature reconvenes to debate Governor Ducey's proposed budget, a key component is a proposed 2.5% "flat" income tax to replace the current system. During the short recess, a number of counter-proposals and criticisms materialized from the governor’s fellow Republicans inside the legislature and out — the most prominent of the latter being former governor Jan Brewer.

A Cosmetology Board Capture Index: Measuring the Influence of Self-Interest in Occupational Licensing

Occupational licensing policies are widely understood to suppress employment and entrepreneurial opportunities as well as raise prices to consumers. What has not been studied much is the mechanism by which occupational licensing restrictions are influenced by the boards created to enforce them. Those boards are often dominated by existing licensing holders and other active market players who have a direct self-interest in keeping the barriers to entry into the occupation high.

You Can Take It with You: A Case for Occupational Licensing Reciprocity

Many workers must go through the often lengthy and costly process of getting a new occupational license when they move to a new state even if they have substantial work experience or a license in good standing from their prior state of residence. The ability to bring their license with them — license portability — doesn’t exist for most workers. This lack of license portability has real-world impacts.  

Second Chances: The Importance of Occupational Licensing Reform to Arkansas’s Criminal Justice Reform Initiatives

Barriers to employment for former prisoners extend beyond the obvious problems of low education level and limited work experience. Based on some states’ “good character” laws, which allow occupational licensing boards to reject an applicant merely because of a criminal record, such boards have denied former prisoners the opportunity to receive a license.

Conform and Reform: How Arizona Policymakers Can Use Federal Tax Reform as a Spur to Reform Arizona’s Income Tax System

The federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) has, for the first time in over 30 years, made significant changes to the federal tax code. The changes make the federal income tax system more amenable to new investment activity and job-creation largely by making the tax code less distortionary with respect to market decisions.

Weighing Down the Bootstraps: The Heavy Burden of Occupational Licensing on Immigrant Entrepreneurs

Immigrants to the United States make up an average of 14% of the population yet they make up 22% of all entrepreneurs. As a result, the immigrant entrepreneurship rate — the number of entrepreneurs as a share of the population — tends to be higher than the native- born entrepreneurship rate. While the average rate of native self-employed equaled 240 entrepreneurs per 100,000 people (or 0.24%), the average rate of immigrant entrepreneurs equaled 420 per 100,000 people (0.42%).

Turning Shackles into Bootstraps: Why Occupational Licensing Reform Is the Missing Piece of Criminal Justice Reform

The three years following release from prison is the window in which ex-prisoners are mostly likely to re-offend. Successful entry into the labor force has been shown to greatly increase the chances that a prisoner will not recidivate. Yet govern- ment-imposed barriers to reintegration into the labor force — particularly occupational licensing requirements — can be among the most pernicious barriers faced by ex-prisoners seeking to enter the workforce.