Missouri Legislative Library

New Arrivals

February 2011

 

CHILDREN, YOUTH & FAMILIES

1. Conway, Emily, and Mary Fairchild. “Helping working families build financial security.” NCSL Legisbrief, February 2011, Vol. 19, No. 8, 2 p. (One in four US households is “asset poor” – holding insufficient financial resources to survive above the poverty line for more than four months. Strategies states can employ to help people make informed decisions about money management are noted.) VF : Families

2. Foreman, Megan. “Taking responsibility.” State Legislatures, February 2011, vol. 37, No. 2, p. 26-28. (Teen pregnancies cost taxpayers $9 billion in lost tax revenues and greater demands on services. Two new streams of federal dollars offer states the opportunity to help young people avoid unwanted pregnancies. )

3. Ramsdell, Molly. “Children and disasters : Is your state prepared?” NCSL Legisbrief, February 2011, Vol. 19, No. 12, 2 p. (Few states require child-care facilities and schools to have disaster-preparedness plans that meet basic criteria. Policy suggestions to remedy this gap are given.) VF : Emergency Management

COURTS

4.
Levin, Marc. “The specialty of specialty courts : solving problems, not passing them along.” Inside ALEC, February 2011, p. 11-14. (Speciality courts can provide a level of structure and intervention for defendants who need more than basic probation but do not need to be incarcerated to protect the public. Levin’s examples include courts dealing with drug, mental health and veterans’ issues.)

CRIME & CRIMINAL JUSTICE
 
5.
Levin, Marc, and Vikrant Reddy. “The right way to think outside the cell.” Inside ALEC, February 2011, p. 17-21. (“Right on Crime” is a conservative movement looking at the criminal justice system, with goals that would enhance public safety, control costs, ensure justice for victims and redirect offenders into being productive, law-abiding taxpayers.)

EDUCATION
           
6.
Anderson, Tim. “No easy answers.” CSG Stateline Midwest, January 2011, Vol. 20, No. 1, p. 1+. (K-12 spending is the single largest expense in Midwestern state budgets. Experts project a really rough year for school finances, as federal stimulus dollars dry up and local property values go down.)

7.
Delivering on the promise : How Missouri can grow excellent, accountable public charter schools. Washington, D.C. : National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, February 2011, 43 p. (The developmental arc for charter schools is different in Missouri than in other states. This report examines the development and status of Missouri’s charter schools, considering performance, policy environment, finance and support. Specific recommendations are included.) VF : Charter Schools
           
8.
Deyé, Sunny. A path to graduation for every child : state legislative roles and responsibilities. Denver : National Conference of State Legislatures, January 2011, 32 p. (This study was conducted by a 14-member bipartisan legislative task force, charged with finding out why kids drop out and what key policy actions can help them decide to stay in school. Recommendations are backed with states’ examples.) NCSL : Education

9.
Performance incentives : their growing impact on American K-12 education, Matthew G. Springer, editor. Washington, D.C. : Brookings Institution, 2009, 336 p. (This collection of essays offers an analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of performance pay policies.) LB2842.22.P47

10.
“Quality counts 2010.” Education Week, January 14, 2010, Vol. 29, No. 17, 50 p. (An annual report card on American public education, the publication grades states within the categories of the teaching profession, standards/ assessments/ accountability, finance and its Chance-for-Success Index, presented in 50-state charts. There’s also an in-depth look at the push for common academic standards.)

11. “Quality counts 2011.” Education Week, January 13, 2011, Vol. 30, No 16, 54 p. (50-state charts show grades for the states concerning the annual Chance-for-Success Index, K-12 achievement, finance, and the alignment and flow of educational progress from early childhood through preparation for college or the workforce. The theme of the issue is education and the economy and the uncertainty that prevails.)
 
3.
Ramsdell, Molly. “Children and disasters : Is your state prepared?” NCSL Legisbrief, February 2011, Vol. 19, No. 12, 2 p. (Few states require child-care facilities and schools to have disaster-preparedness plans that meet basic criteria. Policy suggestions to remedy this gap are given.) VF : Emergency Management
           
12.
Rhee, Michelle. “What I’ve learned.” Newsweek, December 13, 2010, p. 36-41. (Rhee, who resigned as chancellor of the D.C. public-school system after the primary loss of Mayor Adrian Fenty, writes about the challenges she faced during her three years on the job. She says the state of American education is pitiful and getting worse.)

13. Silverman, Robert Mark. “How unwavering is support for the local property tax? Voting on school district budgets in New York, 2003-2010.” Journal of Education Finance, Winter 2011, Vol. 36, No. 3, p. 294-311. (Between 2003 and 2010, 91.6 percent of proposed school district budgets were approved by New York voters. Election turnout tends to be low. The article includes suggestions for financial planning.)

14. Strunk, Katharine O., and Dara Zeehandelaar. “Differentiated compensation : How California school districts use economic incentives to target teachers.” Journal of Education Finance, Winter 2011, Vol. 36, No. 3, p. 268-293. (This study notes that California districts emphasize incentives for teachers with doctorates and/or National Board certification, rather than for teachers of specific subjects.)

15. Sutton, Lenford C., and Richard A. King. “School vouchers in a climate of political change.” Journal of Education Finance, Winter 2011, Vol. 36, No. 3, p. 244-267. (Arguments concerning school vouchers, from policy to litigation, are discussed.)

16. Wingert, Pat. “Give peace a chance.” Newsweek, December 13, 2010, p. 42-43. (The teachers’ union in Hillsborough County, Florida, is a strong player in local school-reform efforts.)

ENERGY

17. Verdi, Julia. “Carbon capture and storage.” NCSL Legisbrief, February 2011, Vol. 19, No. 11, 2 p. (Carbon capture and storage could significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions from coal plants.) Energy – Coal

18. Weeks, Jennifer. “Managing nuclear waste : Should spent fuel be stored at Yucca Mountain?” CQ Researcher, Jan. 28, 2011, Vol. 21, No. 4, p. 73-96. (President Obama advocates a new storage solution to the problem-plagued Yucca Mountain, Nevada, complex. This piece gives an overview of nuclear-energy policy, practice and potential.)

ENVIRONMENT

19.
Baker, Linda. “Pipe dreams.” Governing, February 2011, Vol. 24, No. 5, p. 36-38. (Managing stormwater is one of the most important environmental issues facing cities today. A Kansas City project is among those discussed in the article.)
                                                                                                           
ETHICS

20. Kerns, Peggy. “Sorting right from wrong.” State Legislatures, February 2011, Vol. 37, No. 2, p. 29-30. (Ethics laws can’t eliminate bad judgment. Nine steps to consider when facing an ethical dilemma are presented.)

FINANCE & REVENUE

21. Clark, Korey. “Wrong turn? States say ‘no’ to bankruptcy idea.” StateNet Capitol Journal, February 7, 2011, Vol. 19, No. 4, p. 1-4. (State officials are speaking out against federal legislation that would allow states to file for bankruptcy.)

22. “Continuum of state fiscal stress.” State Policy Reports, December 2010, Vol. 28, No. 23-24, p. 8-15. (State fiscal conditions are analyzed re: budget cuts, tax collections, year-end balances and balances as a percent of spending.)
           
23. “Deficit reduction on the brain (and the agenda).” State Policy Reports, November 2010, Vol. 28, No. 22, p. 2-9. (Two recent reports, The moment of truth, from The National Commission of Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, and Restoring America’s future, from The Debt Reduction Task Force of the Bipartisan Policy Center, call for dramatic changes in federal spending and taxation. Report highlights are discussed. The entire reports are online, the first at fiscalcommission.gov and the second at bipartisanpolicy.org)
                       
24. Eckl, Corina. “Deep holes, few options.” State Legislatures, February 2011, Vol. 37, No. 2, p. 18-20. (Revenues are on the road to recovery but federal stimulus money has run out and expenses are on the rise. Budget gaps will plague many states for several years.)

25. “Index of State Economic Momentum.” State Policy Reports, December 2010, Vol. 28, No. 23-24, p. 2-7. (50-state charts rank economic performance in vitality, personal income, employment and population growth. Overall Missouri is No. 46.)

26. Lav, Iris J., and Elizabeth McNichol. Misunderstandings regarding state debt, pensions, and retiree health costs create unnecessary alarm : Misconceptions also divert attention from needed structural reforms. Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, January 20, 2011, 21 p. (State structural deficits stem largely from out-of-date tax systems coupled with costs that rise faster than the economy. Fixing the basics is more constructive than exaggerating imminent threats or abrogating responsibility by declaring bankruptcy.) VF : State Finance & Revenue

27. State budget reform toolkit. Washington, D.C. : ALEC, 2011, 41 p. (This set of budget and procurement “best practices” is designed to help policymakers solve budget shortfalls and deliver core government services efficiently.) VF : State Finance & Revenue

HEALTH, WELFARE & SOCIAL SERVICES
           
28.Accountable care organizations.” Health Cost Containment and Efficiencies : NCSL Briefs for State Legislators, May 2010, 4 p. ( Accountable care organizations are local entities that monitor care across multiple care settings [physician groups, clinics, hospitals] and are accountable to payers [Medicaid, Medicare, insurers]. Not a cost-containment strategy, ACOs are a vehicle for implementing reform and redesign in order to obtain better value for dollars spent. Examples are given.) VF : Medical Care – Cost

29. Accountable health care.” State Legislatures, February 2011, Vol. 37, No. 2, p. 10. (The concept of the accountable care organization is relatively new but growing in popularity. State lawmakers can authorize ACO programs or participate in federal Medicaid demonstration programs.)

30. Clemmitt, Marcia. “Genes and health : Is gene therapy for disease on the horizon?” CQ Researcher, Jan. 21, 2011, Vol. 21, No. 3, p. 49-72. (Progress from sequencing the human genome to practical health applications has been slow but researchers expect gene therapies within the next three decades. A current question of merit: Do genetics tests help consumers improve their health?)

31. Hansen, Melissa. “Community health centers.” NCSL Legisbrief, February 2011, Vol. 19, No. 7, 2 p. (State funding for health centers is projected to be at a five-year low in 2011. Health centers provide basic primary care as well as dental, pharmaceutical, mental health and other treatment services to those who might otherwise not receive such care.) VF : Health Services

32. “Medicaid crisis looming for states.” StateNet Capitol Journal, February 7, 2011, Vol. 19, No. 4, p. 4-6. (Medicaid’s ever-increasing share of state budgets has made the program a prime target for cuts as states deal with budget gaps.)

33. Sward, Deborah, and Katie Boyer. “International Disease Classification — ICD-10.” NCSL Legisbrief, February 2011, Vol. 19, No. 10, 2 p. (Payers and providers are expected to adopt the Tenth Revision of the International Classification of Diseases by October 1, 2013. The federal government will pay 90 percent of the costs associated with system and coding changes within the Medicaid system.) VF : Medical Treatment

IMMIGRATION

34.
“Martinez orders NM immigration check.” StateNet Capitol Journal, February 7, 2011, Vol. 19, No. 4, p 11-13. (New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez has directed state police to inquire about the immigration status of anyone arrested on criminal charges.)
           
INSURANCE

35.
Buntin, John. “The commissioner is in : How one regulator set out to transform the health-care system.” Governing, February 2011, Vol. 24, No. 5, p. 22-28. (Christopher Koller, Rhode Island’s state health insurance commissioner, is addressing the affordability of the health-care delivery system as a whole. He may develop a model for health insurance regulation – or not.)

36.
Clark, Korey. “Health overhaul opponents launch two-pronged attack.” StateNet Capitol Journal, January 24, 2011, Vol. 19, No. 3, p. 8-10. (The House voted to repeal last year’s federal health care reform law and over half of the states have joined a lawsuit challenging the law. The Center for American Progress says the law is actually tax law and is constitutional.)
           
37.
Galbraith, Alison A., et al. “Nearly half of families in high-deductible health plans whose members have chronic conditions face substantial financial burdens.” Health Affairs, February 2011, Vol. 30, No. 2, p. 322-331.(High-deductible health plans may have more affordable premiums but enrollees with chronic conditions are apt to find health care a financial burden, making them effectively underinsured.)                                                    
38.
Morris, Donald, and Pingjing Qiao. “How states employ the income tax to effect health care measures : encouraging the purchase of health insurance.” Journal of State Taxation, January-February 2011, Vol. 29, No. 2, p. 41-52+. (The authors suggest that states decouple the costs of health insurance from other medical expenses in regard to income tax. Examples of state innovations in the field are noted. 50-state charts)

MOTOR VEHICLES
           
39.
“Red light running kills.” Status Report, Feb. 1, 2011, Vol. 46, No. 1, 11 p. (Red-light running killed 676 people in 2009. This special report discusses the impact of red-light cameras.)

40.
Savage, Melissa, and Anne Teigen “Motorcycle safety.” NCSL Legisbrief, February 2011, Vol. 19, No. 9, 2 p. (This is a review of the current status of helmet laws.) VF : Helmet Laws

41. Turner, Daniel S., et al. Summary report : Alabama school bus seat belt pilot project. University Transportation Center for Alabama, UTCA Report No. 07407-1, October 25, 2010, 40 p. (This three-year study finds that most school bus pupil fatalities occur in or near loading zones. Enhanced safety measures in unloading/loading zones would be more cost-effective than seatbelts.) VF : Motor Vehicle Restraints

PENSIONS & RETIREMENT

26.
Lav, Iris J., and Elizabeth McNichol. Misunderstandings regarding state debt, pensions, and retiree health costs create unnecessary alarm : Misconceptions also divert attention from needed structural reforms. Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, January 20, 2011, 21 p. (State structural deficits stem largely from out-of-date tax systems coupled with costs that rise faster than the economy. Fixing the basics is more constructive than exaggerating imminent threats or abrogating responsibility by declaring bankruptcy.) VF : State Finance & Revenue

42.
Munnell, Alicia H., et al. The impact of public pensions on state and local budgets. Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, No. 13, October 2010, 12 p. (This brief looks at the additional funding required for public pensions relative to state budgets. It includes a six-state sample; California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Massachusetts, New Jersey.) VF : Public Employee Retirement Systems

POLITICS & GOVERNMENT
                                                           
43.
Clemmitt, Marcia. “Lies and politics : Do politicians lie more today?” CQ Researcher, Feb. 18, 2011, Vol. 21, No. 7, p. 145-168. (Scholars who study political discourse say today’s partisan wrangling is not merely mean-spirited. Falsehoods and half-truths are increasing the level of public cynicism and turning people off the political process. Pollsters report that trust in government is low.)

44.
“Filibuster reform : reconsidering the Senate rules of debate.” Congressional Digest, February 2011, Vol. 90, No. 2, p. 33-64. (“Filibustering” refers to delaying or blocking a majority vote by lengthy debate or other procedures. The cloture rule is discussed and six senators speak on changing the current rules.)

STATE & LOCAL GOVERNMENT
           
45. Boulard, Garry. “The great divide.” State Legislatures, February 2011, Vol. 37, No. 2, p. 22-25. (Campaign funding, term limits and an electoral system tilted toward ideological extremes are seen as some of the causes of the increase in partisan attitudes and approaches in state legislatures.)

35.
Buntin, John. “The commissioner is in : How one regulator set out to transform the health-care system.” Governing, February 2011, Vol. 24, No. 5, p. 22-28. (Christopher Koller, Rhode Island’s state health insurance commissioner, is addressing the affordability of the health-care delivery system as a whole. He may develop a model for health insurance regulation – or not.)

21. Clark, Korey. “Wrong turn? States say ‘no’ to bankruptcy idea.” StateNet Capitol Journal, February 7, 2011, Vol. 19, No. 4, p. 1-4. (State officials are speaking out against federal legislation that would allow states to file for bankruptcy.)
           
46. Maneke, Jean, and Kelly Stavnes. “Lack of Sunshine Law enforcement keeps citizens in the dark.” Journal of the Missouri Bar, January-February 2011, Vol. 67, No. 1, p. 24-27. (The State Auditor has been documenting and reporting Sunshine Law violations. The authors believe that there should be a mandate for the Attorney General to pursue such violations.)

47. Marshall, Alex. “The cohesion factor : When governors say no to infrastructure, is it fiscal prudence or politics?” Governing, February 2011, Vol. 24, No. 5, p. 20-21. (The U.S. spends less of its GDP on infrastructure than its peers do. Well-conceived and well-executed projects would do a lot to convince the country that infrastructure is a necessary investment.)
           
TAXATION

48.
Henchman, Joseph. “State tax changes during 2010.” Tax Foundation Special Report No. 188, January 2011, 8 p. (There were fewer state-level tax changes in 2010 than expected as a result of improving revenues, resistance to tax increases and additional federal aid to states. The author draws conclusions about changes that were enacted. View the report at http://www.taxfoundation.org/files/sr188.pdf . Multiple links.) Online
                       
38.
Morris, Donald, and Pingjing Qiao. “How states employ the income tax to effect health care measures : encouraging the purchase of health insurance.” Journal of State Taxation, January-February 2011, Vol. 29, No. 2, p. 41-52+. (The authors suggest that states decouple the costs of health insurance from other medical expenses in regard to income tax. Examples of state innovations in the field are noted. 50-state charts)