Brief Analyses

Restricted to two letter-size pages, a Brief Analysis summarizes some aspect or aspects of a public policy issue, presenting points for consideration in policy debates or responding to points that have been raised during these debates.

Social Security by Choice: The Experience of Three Texas Counties

Stock market volatility remains one of the primary objections to switching from the current pay-as-you-go method of funding Social Security benefits to a system of prefunded personal retirement acco…

It Is Time to Make the R and D Tax Credit Permanent

In December 2010, Congress extended the research and development tax credit through tax year 2011, but it has since lapsed and has not yet been renewed for 2012. The tax credit was first enacted in 19…

Private Policing Options for the Poor

Protection against criminality is a traditional function of government. Where government fails, however, people often turn to the private sector. That is why there are three times as many private se…

The Jitney Potential: Transportation for the Poor

Low-income families need transportation. They need to get to and from jobs, medical clinics and schools -- in addition to markets for other jobs and services. The automobile is the most convenient f…

Paying for Pet Projects at the Pump

The federal and state governments levy taxes on gasoline and diesel fuel primarily to fund highway construction and repair. These taxes average 40 cents on every gallon of gas purchased. However,…

Infrastructure Funding: Taking the Wrong Path

A recent American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) report estimated the United States will need to spend $2.2 trillion over the next few years to bring the country's infrastructure to acceptable leve…

Increasing the Supply of Affordable Child Care

With more children spending time in nonparental care, concerns about the quality of out-of-home care have increased. These concerns have led state and local governments to regulate and license facilit…

Health Exchange Subsidies Will Reduce Employer Health Plans

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) - the new health reform law - contains financial incentives for the states to establish health insurance exchanges where qualifying individuals and…