We’re not Laffing – Rhode Island’s ALEC/Laffer Index

Justin notes the state’s latest unemployment figure. Rhode Island now has the second highest unemployment rate in the nation.
A Providence Bus News article posted July 8 suggests a major contributing factor in the form of other dubious rankings, which together mean that

Rhode Island’s economic outlook ranked 48th among states in a new study from the American Legislative Exchange Council, which said the state’s ranking suffered because of what it characterized as high income and property taxes and an estate tax.

It ain’t the neighborhood.

The second annual Rich States, Poor States: ALEC-Laffer State Economic Competitiveness Index ranked Massachusetts 26th and Connecticut 32nd.

It is

15 “variables,” including top marginal personal income tax rate (7 percent, ranked 33rd), top marginal corporate income tax rate (9 percent, ranked 39th), property tax burden ($48.62 per $1,000 of personal income, ranked 46th).

Plus the state’s minimum wage. The state not being right to work (50th – yikes). And throw in the state’s liability system (tort litigation, judicial impartiality,etc.) – 39th – for good measure.
There were two bits of good news; we should note with applause that one was the General Assembly’s discipline in precluding any form of the Economic Death and Dismemberment Act last … er, this session.

the study gives the state good marks for a relatively low sales tax burden and moderately low workers compensation costs.

Overall, however, the ALEC/Laffer index of Rhode Island [PDF] paints a very unpleasant picture of our economic condition.
Analyzing a little deeper now to determine the cause of this condition, we turn to remarks made Wednesday by Rep Tim Williamson (D-West Warwick) on the Dan Yorke Show.

If you look at our state, you look at the western corrider, you look at the East Bay. Their issues are not the same as my issues issues in West Warwick.

Au contraire, mon frere. The ALEC/Laffer index is only the latest in a long list of analyses confirming that the entire state now suffers the considerable ill effects of a controlling party whose members too often cast votes out of misguided sympathy or to advance a self interest instead of the best interest of the state by … oh, for example, legislating an economic climate that would attract rather than repulse those pesky entities which hire, employ, hand out paychecks, pay taxes – what are they called now? Oh, yeah. Businesses.

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Tom W
Tom W
11 years ago

The folks at the Poverty Pimp Institute always oppose budget reductions by decrying a mythical “race to the bottom” for welfare “benefits.” The Democrat General Assembly obeys.
So we win the very real “race to the bottom” for economic opportunity and performance.

11 years ago

Williamson’s right.
The issues in West Warwick can’t be the same if the townspeople keep sending that radioactive load back to Smith Hill.

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