Entries by Andrew Cline

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Our legislators must be scientific super geniuses

For years, legislators have been on a relentless quest to raise electricity rates for Granite Staters. Because unlike the rest of us, they are geniuses.  None of us knows exactly what New Hampshire’s energy mix should be. None of us could say precisely how much of the state’s energy should come from solar or biomass.  […]

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Arkansas’ Medicaid Expansion work woes shouldn’t kill NH’s experiment before it starts

Just as New Hampshire begins monitoring its Medicaid work requirements this month, legislators consider a bill to kill those requirements. Often cited as a justification for eliminating the work requirements is Arkansas’ experience in 2018. That year, 18,164 Arkansas Medicaid enrollees lost coverage after the state enacted work requirements. But a closer look at the […]

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With credit report restrictions, did legislators just hurt minority job applicants?

To protect minorities from hiring discrimination, state lawmakers just passed legislation shown in academic studies to reduce the odds that minority applicants are hired. Hello, law of unintended consequences. It’s recently become a progressive article of faith that employer credit history checks must be discriminatory in their effect if not their intent because minorities tend […]

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A skeptic’s guide to commuter rail boosterism

SUMMARY: To promote taxpayer funding of a quarter-billion dollar commuter rail project, supporters last week touted a single poll question, without context, that appeared to show strong public support for commuter rail. It’s a tactic rail enthusiasts have repeated for years. Journalists, lawmakers and the public should be skeptical of such PR campaigns. This brief […]

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Leaping on the income tax grenade

In an extraordinary show of party discipline, Senate Majority Leader Dan Feltes and Finance Committee Chairman Lou D’Alessandro leapt into action Tuesday to quickly smother a political hand grenade tossed by freshman Sen. Jeanne Dietsch, D-Peterborough. They smothered it the old fashioned way — by throwing Sen. Dietsch on top of it.  Sen. Dietsch committed […]

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New Hampshire dawdles as two-thirds of states move to collect online sales taxes

After the U.S. Supreme Court ruled last June in South Dakota v. Wayfair that states could collect sales taxes from out-of-state remote sellers, New Hampshire lawmakers chose not to act. Other states did not make the same mistake.  Eleven months after the Wayfair decision, the number of states with laws requiring out-of-state businesses to collect […]

Before outlawing plastic bags and straws, try persuasion

The Senate votes Wednesday on two bills to regulate the distribution of plastic straws and bags. Before making outlaws of restaurateurs and grocers, senators ought to consider that there are other, less heavy-handed ways to address the issue of plastics pollution — and they have been shown to work better than bans. Up for a […]

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Study: Renewable Portfolio Standards raise electricity prices substantially

Renewable Portfolio Standards increase electricity costs more than was previously believed, a comprehensive study by the University of Chicago’s Energy Policy Institute has found. Moreover, the study concluded that the costs outweigh the benefits of whatever carbon reduction RPS laws can be credited with producing.  Measuring both direct and indirect costs, the EPI study concluded […]