What do people do when they need money quickly? Their car needs costly repairs so they can get to work. A medical emergency has resulted in a hefty bill. The furnace is broken, and the temperature is dropping.
Conservative fiscal policies at the state and national level have been a key cause of the lackluster economic recovery following the Great Recession, according to a new report from the Economic Policy Institute (EPI). EPI’s findings are especially relevant for Maine; while EPI cites the post-2009 recovery as one of the longest on record, Maine’s recovery has been even slower. The U.S. economy recovered its pre-Recession employment levels … Read the rest
Maine cuts to school funding since the start of the recession are among the largest in the nation, and the deepest in New England, according to a new study released today. The report by the non-partisan Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP), Most States Still Funding Schools Less than before the Recession, found that Maine has cut investment in K-12 education by 13.3 percent since 2008, a … Read the rest
History is happening: the percent of Americans without health coverage is the lowest it’s been since the 1990s. Medicare costs are declining – not just slowing – making the program more sustainable in the future. Maine’s 2015 marketplace premiums are either flat – or lower than last year. Health reform is working.
I happened across a time capsule this summer, and it brought home for me exactly how huge an … Read the rest
This year, 1,300 Mainers will be saddled with catastrophic health costs. Here’s how it could have been avoided – while creating thousands of jobs and boosting state GDP.
Yesterday, the White House Council of Economic Advisors (CEA) released a report examining the differences between states that have accepted federal healthcare funds to expand Medicaid and the minority of states – including Maine – which still have not expanded. Fittingly, … Read the rest
Tomorrow, the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics will release its monthly state-by-state jobs and employment report. While the data are subject to revision and should be viewed with some skepticism, they help paint a picture of how Maine’s employment situation stacks up relative to other states.
Last week, the (Lewiston) Sun Journal reported that the LePage Administration’s anti-bonding policies are forcing MaineGeneral Medical Center to pay $42 million more in interest on loans than is necessary on the construction of their new hospital in Augusta. That’s $1.4 million in avoidable interest payments annually for 30 years.
The legislature created the Maine Health and Higher Education Facilities Authority (MHHEFA) to allow entities like hospitals, nursing homes, public … Read the rest
Between the lines of stockholder calls, refusing Medicaid expansion bad for hospitals’ balance sheets
First-quarter financial results are in, and the CEOs of some of America’s publicly-traded hospitals systems are finding Medicaid expansion is good for business. And they are reporting big differences between their facilities in states that have expanded Medicaid and the hospitals in states still refusing federal healthcare dollars. In states that have accepted federal healthcare funds and worked to promote the ACA, hospital executives are realizing significant increases in the … Read the rest
The Urban Institute (UI) recently released a new analysis of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) employer mandate (Why Not Just Eliminate the Employer Mandate?) and what the impact would be if the employer mandate were eliminated.
UI concludes that:
“. . . eliminating the employer mandate will not reduce insurance coverage significantly, contrary to its supporters’ expectations. Eliminating it will remove labor market distortions that have … Read the rest
Maine needs jobs and good jobs at that. Bonding to invest in research and development will result in more, better-paying jobs. Consider the story of two companies that must innovate to compete.
Acadia Harvest in Brunswick is learning how to grow fish indoors. Kenway Corporation of Augusta is a composite manufacturer. Acadia Harvest is a new company. Kenway has been making fiberglass in Maine for 50 years. Both recognized the … Read the rest