How States Can Support Shared Prosperity in Cities through Quality Jobs

How States Can Support Shared Prosperity in Cities through Quality Jobs. Urban Institute. Donnie Charleston. March 26, 2020

New technologies, economic shifts, changing demographics and continued racial biases are widening income inequalities and racial disparities in cities across the United States. As a result, economic opportunities are increasingly concentrated among a small share of the population and in a limited number of places. To combat increased economic and geographic inequality within cities, local leaders are launching new efforts to enable women, people of color and other underrepresented groups to contribute to and benefit from economic growth. But local leaders cannot address these issues on their own. In an era of federal withdrawal from investments in communities and the social safety net, state and local leaders must work together to advance shared prosperity. In this series of briefs, we articulate why the issues of affordable housing, job growth and upskilling workers matter to statewide shared prosperity. In addition, we explore how state and local governments can forge more effective partnerships, and we profile states that are leading the way.
In this brief, the authors discuss how state and local governments can more effectively partner to grow quality jobs in cities. They acknowledge that the complexity of the challenges requires more integrated and complimentary workforce development and job growth strategies. In an accompanying brief, they address more directly the human capital development strategies that should work in tandem with job growth and economic development approaches examined in this brief. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 20 pages].

Polling Shows Signs of Public Trust in Institutions amid the Pandemic

Polling Shows Signs of Public Trust in Institutions amid the Pandemic. Pew Research Center. Cary Funk. Април 7, 2020.

The ongoing effort to fight COVID-19 wins broad support, even across partisan divides

In the face of unprecedented measures to limit social contact at work, at school and on the main streets of communities across the nation, Americans give themselves good marks, with 86% saying people in their households are “reacting about right.” Most also say their local school system is reacting about right (86%), and majorities say the same about their local (74%) or state (72%) government. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

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School Closures, Government Responses, and Learning Inequality around the World during COVID-19

School Closures, Government Responses, and Learning Inequality around the World during COVID-19. Brookings Institution. Emiliana Vegas. April 14, 2020

According to UNESCO, as of April 14, 188 countries around the world have closed schools nationwide, affecting over 1.5 billion learners and representing more than 91 percent of total enrolled learners. The world has never experienced such a dramatic impact on human capital investment, and the consequences of COVID-19 on economic, social, and political indicators are unknown but certainly will be dramatic.
Although a majority of governments are making substantial efforts to ensure continuing education opportunities, their capacity for quality learning—especially for the most disadvantaged populations—varies enormously. In this brief, the author uses data recently collected by the Center for Global Development and combine it with the World Bank’s classification method for countries’ income levels and regions of the world to take stock of the official education system responses to COVID-19 around the world and to analyze how these responses may affect gaps in student learning across regions, countries of various income levels, and countries with different student performance levels as measured by international assessments. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

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Federal Assistance to Troubled Industries: Selected Examples

Federal Assistance to Troubled Industries: Selected Examples. Congressional Research Service. Baird Webel. March 19, 2020

Serious disruptions for certain industries caused by the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic have led to calls for federal government assistance to affected industries. Direct federal financial assistance to the private sector on a large scale is unusual, except for geographically narrow assistance following natural disasters. Nonetheless, assistance to business sectors affected by COVID-19 would not be the first occasion on which the federal government has aided troubled or financially distressed industries. Historically, aid—sometimes popularly referred to as “government bailouts”—has taken many forms and has occurred under a wide variety of circumstances. Past assistance has involved such instruments as loan guarantees, asset purchases, capital injections, direct loans, and regulatory changes, with the specific mix of policies varying significantly from case to case. These differences make it somewhat subjective as to what should be defined as a “bailout.”
To help inform congressional debate, this report examines selected past instances in which the government has aided troubled industries, providing information about the way in which such assistance was structured, the role of Congress, and the eventual cost. In order to provide greater detail, the examples all involve cases in which federal assistance was (1) widely available to firms within an industry rather than being targeted to a particular firm; (2) extraordinary in nature rather than a type of assistance that is routinely provided; and (3) motivated primarily by a desire to revent industry-wide business failures. The coverage is not exhaustive, and excludes cases in which ssistance was targeted at individual firms rather than at entire industries. In some of these cases, the government was able to recoup much or all of its assistance through fees, interest, warrants, and loan or principal repayments. In others, there were no arrangements made for recoupment or repayment.

[PDF format, 31 pages].

Anti-Corruption in the Americas: What Works?

Anti-Corruption in the Americas: What Works? Center for Strategic & International Studies. Mark L. Schneider. February 25, 2020

Over the past 15 years, Latin America and the global community have been forced to acknowledge that systemic corruption and organized crime networks have increasingly posed serious existential threats to democracy. Organized crime and related corruption in Latin America have generated the world’s highest rates of homicides, kidnappings, assaults, and drug trafficking for nations not at war, destroying lives and families throughout the region. They also undermine political institutions and the rule of law, which in turn weaken legitimate business, destroy social cohesion, and foster generalized fear at all levels of society. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 7 pages].

Introduction to the Federal Budget Process

Introduction to the Federal Budget Process. Congressional Research Service. James V. Saturno. February 26, 2020

Under the U.S. Constitution, Congress exercises the “power of the purse.” This power is expressed through the application of several provisions. The power to lay and collect taxes and the power to borrow are among the enumerated powers of Congress under Article I, Section 8. Furthermore, Section 9 of Article I states that funds may be drawn from the Treasury only pursuant to appropriations made by law. The Constitution, however, does not prescribe how these legislative powers are to be exercised, nor does it expressly provide a specific role for the President with regard to budgetary matters. Instead, various statutes, congressional rules, practices, and precedents have been established over time to create a complex system in which multiple decisions and actions occur with varying degrees of coordination. As a consequence, there is no single “budget process” through which all budgetary decisions are made, and in any year there may be many budgetary measures necessary to establish or implement different aspects of federal fiscal policy. This report describes the development and operation of the framework for budgetary decisionmaking that occurs today and also includes appendices that provide a glossary of budget-process-related terms and a flowchart of congressional budget process actions.

[PDF format, 41 pages].

What’s the Fed doing in response to the COVID-19 crisis? What more could it do?

What’s the Fed doing in response to the COVID-19 crisis? What more could it do? Brookings Institution. Jeffrey Cheng, Dave Skidmore, and David Wessel. March 23, 2020

This post will be updated throughout the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. It was most recently updated on March 31, 2020.

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