Elaine’s Recent Stories
Health Nov 13Here’s why states struggle to enroll people onto Obamacare this year
The demand nationwide appears high. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, which administers the federal program, announced that 601,000 signed up on healthcare.gov during the first four days of open enrollment that began Nov. 1.
Nation May 06Amid gas-tax revenue decline, new fees on fuel-efficient cars
Lawmakers in California, home to almost half of the nation’s electric vehicles, decided this year to impose an annual fee on the owners of plug-in electric cars beginning in 2020.
Nation Apr 16Taxing the new economy, starting with Uber and Lyft
If any service best reflects the new economy, it may be hailing rides on demand from big companies like Uber and Lyft.
Nation Feb 23As Trump eyes infrastructure, local leaders say save ‘muni bonds’
COLUMBIA, S.C. — Structures built with municipal bonds stand out in this city. There is the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center, and new parking garages for a revitalized restaurant and apartment district. Sleek, futuristic water towers loom on the edge of…
Nation Oct 17Cities prepare referendums for taxing sugary drinks
Voters in three California cities and one in Colorado will decide next month whether to slap a special tax on sugary drinks like soda and sports thirst-quenchers after costly, high-stakes campaigns that are pitting healthy-lifestyle advocates against the beverage and…
Nation Oct 04Short on cash, cities and states consider taxing nonprofits
NEW HAVEN, Conn. — When New Haven Mayor Toni Harp gazes out her office windows, she can see across the street to Yale University’s idyllic buildings and grounds — none of which are on her city’s property tax rolls.
Economy Aug 31Why fewer states are offering tax holidays this year
Many back-to-school shoppers used to be able to count on sales tax holidays at this time of year. But more states are disappointing them by rejecting or cutting back on the small tax breaks, as they seek more and steadier…
Nation Aug 04What can we learn from record-busting state budget standoffs?
Take divided government, mix in red-hot tax issues, sprinkle with partisan politics, build on a base of pension liabilities, structural deficits and a dash of Great Recession hangovers, and you have the noxious stew that created record-setting budget standoffs this…
Nation Jul 13Why should public money be used to build sports stadiums?
But many economists maintain that states and cities that help pay for new stadiums and arenas rarely get their money’s worth. Teams tout new jobs created by the arenas but construction jobs are temporary, and ushers and concession workers work…
Economy Jun 29States and cities cautiously raise minimum wage
Most states have put the Great Recession behind them, but memories of anemic tax revenues and slashed budgets still haunt state lawmakers, and fears about the next downturn are growing as the country’s economic expansion enters the traditional danger zone.