How to Minimize Corruption in Pandemic-Related Programs

By Caleb Taylor How can corruption be minimized in pandemic-related government programs? Incentivize whistleblowers and improve online transparency. Programs such as the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) or the Ready for Business Grant Program need greater scrutiny, according to ACRE Policy Analyst Dr. Mavuto Kalulu in “Be vigilant,” an op-ed published in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette on […]

Improving Access to Mental Health Care for Arkansans

By Caleb Taylor How can Arkansas improve access to mental health care?  Zak Massey, a former ACRE Research Fellow, discussed the benefits to Arkansas’s mental health outcomes of expanding scope of practice for nurse practitioners in an op-ed published in Arkansas Business on July 27 entitled “Free Nurse Practitioners.” Massey writes: Nurse practitioners can provide […]

Reducing Barriers to Health

By Ryan Jackson According to the Center for Disease Control, 65 year old adults have lower life expectancy in Arkansas than in the vast majority of other states. Given the plight of our elderly, our state’s seniors would benefit from policies that improve the healthcare they receive.  For instance, a state policy that reduces the […]

How Can Arkansas Counties Prevent Abuse of Public Funds?

By Caleb Taylor What solutions are available to county officials hoping to stop corruption like the recent case of a former Craighead County Clerk allegedly stealing $1.6 million in taxpayer funds? Online transparency helps the public guard against cases of fraud, according to ACRE Policy Analyst Joyce Ajayi in “To prevent abuse,” published in the […]

Severance Taxes Too Volatile

By Macy Scheck Between November 5, 2019 and January 21, 2020, natural gas prices dropped 33.6%.  This dramatic price decline occurred even before March, when the coronavirus began to have a large impact on U.S. economic activity.  This price volatility causes fluctuations in the revenue the state receives from its taxes on natural gas sales, […]

Dry Counties Left Thirsty For Revenue

By Ryan Jackson For most Americans the idea of not being able to go to a store and purchase alcohol seems very foreign.  However, the idea is not foreign to many Arkansas residents as dry counties are very prevalent in the state. Nearly half of Arkansas’ counties are dry, 34 out of 75 counties.  Not […]

Why Arkansas Eminent Domain Law Needs To Be Reformed

By Kennedy Neely Since the killing of George Floyd on May 25, 2020, many states are dealing with increased demands to remove statues honoring Confederate Soldiers.  In particular, the city of Hot Springs, Arkansas has been facing a debate centered around the relocation of a Confederate statue on private property downtown. Because the statue is […]

Barber Licensing in Arkansas Could Use a Cut

By Tanner Corley We all hate when we get a bad haircut, but should the State of Arkansas be mandating that barbers receive 1,500 hours of training, pass an exam, and pay a fee?  In Arkansas, anyone who would like to cut hair must meet these requirements. In March of 2019, State Sen. John Cooper […]

Undergraduate Research Fellow Presents at Virtual Conference

By Caleb Taylor ACRE Undergraduate Research Fellow Tanner Corley presented his research at the virtual Knee Center Occupational Licensing Conference on May 29.  Corley received feedback from other conference participants and economists from a variety of policy groups including Dr. Morris Kleiner, a nationally recognized expert on occupational licensing, professor, and AFL-CIO Chair in Labor […]

Reserve Fund Balances & Rules Shape State Preparedness for Crisis

By Caleb Taylor What’s one tool states can use to weather financial downturns? David Mitchell and Dean Stansel have been studying state fiscal crises for more than  a decade.  As state finances falter from COVID-19’s impact, Mitchell and Stansel draw on their research in a recent opinion article in RealClearPolicy to show how long term […]