Commentary

Commentary – The Latest Big Idea in Montpelier: Taxing Services

John McClaughry On April 15 the Democratic/Progressive chair of the Senate Finance  Committee, Sen. Tim Ashe, lamented the difficult time the legislature is having trying to fill a $113 million General Fund budget gap. Some believe that the state is spending beyond its taxpayers’ means, but Ashe sees it differently. There’s not enough revenue! And […]

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Commentary: Time to Take Climate Change Debate to Next Level

by Rob Roper It is safe to say that all or at least most of us believe that Vermont is a very special place, and we all want to do what’s necessary to preserve and pass on this unique treasure that both draws and keeps us here – majestic mountains, pristine waters, and wild, open […]

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Commentary: The Legislature’s Final Four

by John McClaughry The Vermont legislature has entered the final four weeks of its 2015 session. The House has passed its appropriations, tax and health care “reform” bills, and the Senate is now well along in its consideration of those measures. It’s too soon to predict how differences between the two chambers will be resolved, […]

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Commentary: Forced Consolidation vs. Going Independent

By Rob Roper Last November, Vermonters sent a loud and clear message to Montpelier to fix Vermont’s education financing system and lower our property tax burden. The response now coming out of the legislature is based on mandatory consolidation of school districts into units of no fewer than 1100 students, which will affect all but […]

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Commentary: Time for Facts About Vermont Health Connect

By Wendy Wilton It is good news that Auditor Hoffer has scheduled a performance audit of Vermont Health Connect this spring. The auditor’s work will be vitally important information for the Legislature to consider as it determines the fate of the state’s exchange. Hopefully, they will have his report before the session ends. Much has […]

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Commentary: Disappointing Budget with a Silver Lining

by John McClaughry Last Friday the Vermont House completed deliberations on a fiscal year 2016 general fund budget and an associated tax package. The appropriations committee, after months of intense work and no little agony, produced a budget that covers a $113 million deficit. The House-passed bill (H.490) reduces the governor’s budget request by $53 […]

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Commentary: Tax Raising Mania Sweeps Montpelier (March, 2105)

by John McClaughry Crunch time is rapidly approaching in Montpelier. The pressing problem is finding at least another $112 million to fill a General Fund budget gap for 2016. This high-tension exercise requires finding new money from Washington, looting account balances within state government, and pushing spending into a following fiscal year. When those options […]

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Commentary: Reality Check for the Do-Everything State (February, 2015)

by John McClaughry The House and Senate Appropriations Committees are struggling valiantly to report a balanced General Fund budget for Fiscal Year 2016. The presently estimated shortfall is about $130 million, eight percent of the proposed General Fund budget. This is a result of the chronic tendency of legislatures to find ever more things to […]

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Commentary: School Choice Even Improves the Value of Your Home (February, 2015)

By Rob Roper There are plenty of reasons for parents and kids to love school choice in the 90 plus Vermont towns that already have it, and there are plenty of solid educational and social arguments for expanding the program to all Vermont towns. But why should folks without kids care? Property values. A recent […]

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Commentary: Legislature Moving to Increase Electric Rates (February, 2015)

By John McClaughry The 2015 legislature, and of course, Gov. Peter Shumlin, are hard at work contriving yet another way to make Vermonters pay more for their electricity. The vehicle is H.40, spearheaded by Rep. Tony Klein and just now emerging from the House Natural Resources and Energy Committee. It’s the bill to – finally […]

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About Us

The Ethan Allen Institute is Vermont’s free-market public policy research and education organization. Founded in 1993, we are one of fifty-plus similar but independent state-level, public policy organizations around the country which exchange ideas and information through the State Policy Network.
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Latest News

4-27-15 – The Carolina Cage Match: Peter Shumlin Versus Rational Public Policy

by Chris Campion Having recently moved my waffle franchise south to a place the locals here call “North Carolina”, I thought it would be interesting to perform that most...

5-16-15 – Legislature Exploring Sales Tax Expansion to Services

Posted by Rob Roper Vermont Digger reports that Sen. Tim Ashe (D/P-Chittenden), chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, is considering expanding Vermont’s 6% sales tax to include services...

Roll Call! Senate Resolves to “Take Steps Now” on Climate Change (25-5), 2015

. S.R.7 – A RESOLUTION RELATING TO CLIMATE CHANGE   . PASSED in the State Senate on April 15, 2015 by a vote of 25-5  . Purpose: S.R.7 resolves, “That the...

4-15-15 – Legislature “Laying the Groundwork” for Carbon Tax in 2016

Posted by Rob Roper  Republican members of the House Natural Resources and Energy Committee warned members of their caucus on Tuesday that their committee was preparing to spring...

4-14-15 – Small Business Owner Describes Impact of Carbon Tax

Posted by Rob Roper The Carbon Tax is a topic of conversation again in the House Natural Resources & Energy Committee. Speaking at the House Republican Caucus meeting,...

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