Wayback Machine is a wonderful thing. If you don't know, it's a service that captures web sites as they were on a particular date.
ALEC - the American Legislative Exchange Council - has been around since 1973.
Warning: this is long, and may not be very appealing to the general public to read. However, you may be interested to know why you or a loved one is unable to get health insurance, or pre-existing conditions are excluded... why you cannot buy a car that gets the sort of gas mileage that is common in other countries... even why Governor Walker is turning down federal dollars for various programs.
You may want to know the impact that ALEC has had on the recent debacle that occurred in our federal legislature - the Republicans' refusal to raise the debt ceiling without a whole cadre of strings attached. You will see that the measures attached have been in the works for over a decade, for certain, and likely much longer (Wayback goes back only to 1998 for this web site - the date the "capture" of its data occurred was February 9, 1998, though it is apparent that this data mostly references 1996).
You may want to know why corporations are able to get away with paying no taxes - and that the agenda includes an ultimate goal of ZERO taxes on corporations.
You may want to know, "What's next?"
You may want to know why your income has dwindled, and why it is likely to dwindle further, if ALEC corporations get their way.
You may want to know what will happen if we continue to elect bought-and-paid for ALEC and Tea Party members at the federal, state, and local levels.
WELCOME TO ALEC !
"ALEC is bringing to America a chance to recapture the soul of America ... to allow every single American man or woman, irrespective of their ethnic background- irrespective of their color- a chance to be part of the greatest democracy- the greatest freedom- the greatest system on the face of the earth."
"The American Legislative Exchange Council, according to both conservatives and liberals, is having more and more impact on the lives of American taxpayers and voters." - San Francisco Examiner
With 3,000 members throughout all 50 states, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) is the nation's largest non-partisan, individual membership association of state legislators. Founded in 1973, ALEC is dedicated to developing and advancing policies based on the Jeffersonian principles of individual liberty, limited government, federalism and free markets. Among the leadership of America's state legislatures, ALEC members have an impressive presence: 31 Speakers and Speaker Pro Tems; 37 Senate Presidents and Senate Pro Tems; 25 Senate Majority and Minority Leaders; 38 House Majority and Minority Leaders. Currently, 12 Governors and 77 members of Congress are alumni of ALEC.
ALEC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit public policy organization headquartered in Washington, D.C., and receives its financial support from more than 300 corporate and foundation sponsors. ALEC currently does not offer memberships to individuals.
ALEC Task Forces
ALEC has nine standing task forces which publish studies and issue papers and author model legislation on a wide-range of issues. State legislators and private sector representatives are members of the task forces, which meet at least twice a year. For further information on ALEC task forces contact the Office of Policy and Legislation at (202) 466-3800.
Commerce and Economic Development
Energy,Environment,Natural Resources and Agriculture
Health and Human Services
Tax and Fiscal Policy
Telecommunications & Information Technology
Trade and Transportation
ALEC's 24th Annual Meeting
August 12-16, 1997
New Orleans, Louisiana
Contact: Membership and Conventions, (202) 466-3800
Jazz, jambalya and discussions of free market policies will spice up ALEC's 24th Annual Meeting in New Orleans! Nearly 3,000 lawmakers, policy experts and business leaders will gather on the Gulf to set the common sense, conservative agenda for the 21st century.
STATES AND NATION REPORT
Private, Portable Public Employee Pensions May Help States Stay Solvent
Innovative Pension Reform Adopted by Commerce and Economic Development Task Force By Greg Smith, Esq.
On May 30 ALEC's National Task Force on Commerce and Economic Development adopted the model Public Employees' Portable Retirement Option Act (PRO). The new model bill could not only revolutionize the structure of public employee pension funds, but may also pave the way for privatization of the nation's Social Security system.
In most states, public employees are promised specific benefits upon retirement based on their previous earnings and term of service. However, such defined benefit plans are now recognized as old-fashioned and inconsistent with the needs of the modern workplace. Under defined benefit plans, workers cannot even qualify for retirement benefits until they have vested in the plan. Typically, this means that a worker must put in at least 10 years of service before he or she can even qualify. If employees leave public service before that, they have no claim to their retirement benefits. In an age where workers are highly mobile, these inflexible plans act as an impediment to workers being able to effectively plan for their retirement.
Under ALEC's new model bill, public workers would instead have the option of receiving a defined contribution from the government and investing that money in a retirement plan, such as a 401(k). According to a soon-to-be-released ALEC paper by Peter Ferrara, General Counsel and Senior Economist for Americans for Tax Reform, the number of private sector employees participating in defined-contribution plans increased 300 percent from 1975 to 1995. By contrast, the public sector has remained tied to the outmoded defined benefit plans, with 91 percent of public sector employees participating in such plans in 1994.
Under a defined contribution plan, once a payment is made to the worker, it stays with the worker and is fully portable when the employee changes jobs. Furthermore, according to California State Assemblyman Howard Kaloogian, sponsor of a PRO bill in the Assembly and a leader of the movement, as well as ALEC's California State Chair, defined contribution plans result in better benefits to employees at a cheaper price to taxpayers. Everyone wins with defined contribution plans: both the taxpayer and the worker.
Late last year, Michigan Governor John Engler took Kaloogian's idea and managed to pass sweeping pension reforms in Michigan. Under the bill, all new state employees hired after March 31, 1997, and new public school employees hired after July 31, 1997, will be in the new defined-contribution plan. Current employees have the option of staying in the current system or switching to the defined contribution plan.
Under the new plan, Michigan contributes 4 percent of a worker's salary to individual investment accounts for each worker. The state will also match additional voluntary employee contributions up to 3 percent of salary. Workers also have the option of contributing even more to the account, although the state will not match the excess.
Not only has this concept led to greater flexibility and personal choice for employees, but it also promises to add greater certainty to state budgeting. Unfunded pension liability has become a real threat in many states. According to projections by Wilshire Associates, Inc., many states, including West Virginia, Maine, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Illinois, have only enough assets in state pension funds to cover less than 60 percent of future pension obligations. In the end, taxpayers are the ones who will shoulder this unfunded burden. Under a defined contribution plan, this burden can be avoided entirely.
ALEC's Commerce and Economic Development Task Force will be exploring this issue at the Annual Meeting. Anyone wishing to have input should contact Greg Smith, Task Force Director.
L.A. Loses $8 million a Year on Defendants Who Skip on Government Pre-Trial Releases
Private Bonds Save Money, More Efficient
A new analysis of data in recent studies of the performance of Los Angeles County's pre-trial release agency shows that millions of dollars could be saved by requiring more defendants to post bail through a private agency rather than releasing them on their "own recognizance." An estimated 37 percent of the 192,000 people who were booked in L.A. County in 1996 were released before trial (about 72,000 people). Of those, an estimated 47 percent were released on their "own recognizance" (OR) by a government-run pre-trial release agency and 40 percent were released on a financially secured bond (surety bond) through a private bail bondsman. Of those released on OR, 30 percent failed to appear (FTA) for court. Of those released on a surety bond, only 13 percent failed to appear for court. "We estimate that more than 13,000 people failed to appear for their court date, costing L.A. taxpayers nearly $16.5 million," said Michael Hotra, Director of the ALEC Criminal Justice Task Force, who directed the new analysis. However, the much higher failure-to-appear rate of defendants released by the government-run pretrial release agency resulted in greater losses to the taxpayer. "Nearly 10,000 defendants released by the pre-trial agencies didn't show up for court, costing taxpayers nearly $12.5 million dollars. Less than 4,000 released on a surety bond didn't show up, costing taxpayers just under $4 million. "If all the people who could post a financial bond were required to go through a private bail bondsman instead of being released on their own recognizance (approximately 86 percent of the total released before trial), L.A. taxpayers would save about $8 million a year on reduced failure to appear costs alone." The $8 million in savings is equal to the salary of 200 new police officers (an average starting salary of $40,000), who could be put on the streets, or 188 new school teachers (an average California teacher salary of $42,516), enough to staff two new high schools. The new analysis is based on two recent studies: Runaway Losses: Estimating the Costs of Failure to Appear in the Los Angeles Criminal Justice System, which was released in Los Angeles on June 20, and Evidence of a Failed System: A Study of the Performance of Pretrial Release Agencies in California (April 1995.) The research in both studies was performed by criminal justice experts Michael K. Block, Ph.D. and Steven J. Twist, a former Arizona Deputy State Attorney General and a leader of the Victim's Rights movement, both of Arizona. "Not only does the private market perform better the main task of assuring the appearance of criminal defendants, thereby reducing the social costs of crime in Los Angeles, but now we see it does it at substantially less cost to the taxpayers," Block and Twist say in Runaway Losses. "These results should suggest a clear public policy agenda." Runaway Losses was released at a June 20 news conference in Los Angeles by California State Senator Ray Haynes (R-Temecula), a member of ALEC's Board of Directors. "As the data in this report shows ... the failure-too-appear rate of defendants on pre-trial release from government-run agencies is much higher than it is for private bail bonds agencies, even though the private agencies handle a higher percentage of violent and repeat criminals than do the government-run agencies," Haynes said in releasing the report. Haynes said the study "proves that the hard-earned tax dollars of the citizens of California and Los Angeles are being wasted on a government bureaucracy, when there are already companies in the private sector that do a better job at a lower cost. Government's first priority should be, and must be, to protect the safety of our citizens and their property. One of the ways we can do this is to ensure that every criminal defendant shows up in court to be prosecuted - we must reform our bail system now." The study is already gaining influence in California where Attorney General Dan Lungren's office has drafted a bill aimed at keeping the worst offenders off the streets. The bill, currently making its way through the legislative process, would require judges considering pretrial release to hold serious offenders to the same strict standards applied to violent offenders. Deputy Attorney General Steve Boreman, who participated in the news conference via telephone, said Runaway Loses will be helpful in persuading lawmakers to support the bill because "We believe that based on the data in the ALEC report that" the higher standards are needed, "if not more." "The Attorney General appreciates the recent efforts of ALEC to provide realistic numbers, hard numbers to work from," Boreman said. "We face criticism in the legislature on this subject and need this kind of data provided here today." Reduced Administrative Costs Could Total in Millions. In addition to the $8 million in savings from reducing failure-to-appear costs, Hotra noted that fewer releases on OR would allow for a reduction in the costs of staffing pre-trial release agencies. "Pre-trial release was originally intended to guarantee the constitutional right of reasonable bail for the indigent and poor. However, like many government programs, it has expanded tremendously beyond its original purpose. Now more people are released through government pre-trial release agencies than post a financial bond, which costs the taxpayers more." Hotra said, adding that one of the great mysteries is determining the budget costs of running pre-trial release agencies. "The costs of these bureaucracies are carefully hidden in the court system. It's easier to find out the CIA's budget than how much is actually spent on pre-trial release agencies in Los Angeles." If pre-trial release was reduced to its original intent, then millions more would likely be saved by reducing the size of the pre-trial release agency budgets, he added Millions in Social Costs Could Also be Reduced. The researchers also estimated the social costs to society of a fugitive who fails to appear for court. Based on a Bureau of Justice Statistics study and the data in Runaway Losses, it is estimated that each fugitive in Los Angeles costs society $25,281 in lost crime control benefits. "The higher the failure-to-appear rate, the higher the social costs and increased crime. That is why the actual costs to Los Angeles of the less-effective government pre-trial release system is millions more than the $8 million in direct costs we've identified," said Hotra. Runaway Losses is the third installment of ALEC's Report Card on Crime series, which began with a 1994 state-by-state historical study of the relationship between the length of prison terms and crime rates. That study found that there was a direct correlation between longer terms and lower crime rates over a 20 year period.
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ALEC MODEL LEGISLATION
Board of Directors' Ad Hoc Committee on Federalism
Model Legislation in Update '96
Accountability in Government Amendment to the Constitution of the United States
A resolution for the purpose of petitioning Congress to propose an amendment to the U.S. Constitution for submission to the states to prohibit the federal government from imposing: regulatory mandates on the states or their political subdivisions; unfunded mandates on state and local governments; and, spending conditions that are unrelated to the actual expenditures of funds allocated by Congress. (Update '96, pg. 2)
Resolution Requesting Congress of the United States to Enact Legislation that Requires Congress to Specify the Constitutional Authority for the Enactment of Laws
A resolution for the purpose of petitioning the Congress of the United States to enact legislation that requires Congress to specify the constitutional authority for the enactment of law; prohibits federal agency rules or regulations from preempting or otherwise interfering with state or local powers without express statutory authority; and requires a list of factual findings, establishing a substantial nexus between the regulatory effect of the proposed law and interstate commerce if Article 1, Section 8, Clause 3, of the Constitution is identified as the Constitutional provision granting authority to Congress for its proposed law. (Update '96, pg. 4)
Government Of The People Amendment To The Constitution Of The United States
A resolution for the purpose of petitioning the Congress of the United States to propose an amendment to the Constitution of the United States for submission to the states to establish a mechanism for nullification of federal laws and regulations where the states determine that such laws or regulations exceed the authority of the federal government under the U.S. Constitution. (Update '96, pg. 6)
States’ Initiative Amendment To The Constitution Of The United States
A resolution for the purpose of petitioning the Congress of the United States to propose an amendment to the Constitution of the United States for submission to the states to provide the states a method of offering amendments to the U.S. Constitution. (Update '96, pg. 8)
Declaration of Sovereignty
This resolution is for the purpose of reaffirming the sovereignty of the states and of the people, and proposing principles by which the sovereignty of the states and of the people may be restored to their original intention under the U.S. Constitution. (Update '96, pg. 9)
Civil Justice Task Force
Model Legislation in Update '96
Adoption of Common Law Act
The Adoption of Common Law Act clarifies that when a state Legislature adopted the common law of England or the state’s territorial or colonial court at the time of statehood and then delegated to the courts the power to develop that body of law in accord with the interests and public policy of the state, the legislative intent was to provide the courts with laws of reference until and unless the Legislature enacted rules to either complement or replace the common law. The Act reaffirms that, except for any causes of action that were specifically granted constitutional protection at the time of statehood, the Legislature may alter or abrogate any pre-statehood or post-statehood common law causes of action. (Update '96, pg. 14)
Fairness in Statute of Limitations Reopeners Resolution
This Resolution urges limitations on the reopening of statutes of limitation without the application of appropriate standards in product liability litigation. (Update '96, pg. 16)
Product Safety Analysis Incentive Act
This Act provides an incentive for manufacturers to conduct product safety analyses by prohibiting the use of such an analysis by a plaintiff to prove negligence or to prove that a product was defective or unreasonably dangerous. By conducting product safety analyses, manufacturers will be better able to deliver safe products to the marketplace. (Update '96, pg. 17)
Commerce and Economic Development Task Force
Model Legislation in Update '96
At-Will Employment Act
Under traditional "at will" employment, either the employee or employer can terminate the employment relationship at any time for any reason or no reason. Many courts and legislatures have modified this traditional relationship, sometimes even requiring an employer to show good cause before being able to terminate the employment relationship. The At-Will Employment Act stipulates that employment relationships shall be "at-will," unless otherwise specified in an employment contract. The Act also restricts remedies available in the courts for discharged employees. (Update '96, pg. 20)
Civil Rights Act
The Civil Rights Act prohibits any state entity from discriminating or giving preferential treatment to any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin. As a result, all set-aside contracts and affirmative action programs targeted at such individuals or groups would be void. (Update '96, pg. 22)
Employment Reference Immunity Act
Due to increasing threats of litigation, few employers will give job references for employees. This deprives good employees from being able to receive positive evaluations and also results in employers hiring employees they would not have hired if they were aware of the employees' previous conduct. The Employment Reference Immunity Act is designed to encourage employers to give good faith, truthful job references about employees. The Act accomplishes this goal by granting employers absolute and qualified immunity, depending on the scope of the information, for responding to prospective employers' requests for information. (Update '96, pg. 23)
Labor Organizations Deductions Act
The Labor Organizations Deductions Act requires labor organizations to establish separate funds for political purposes, establishes registration and disclosure requirements for each political fund, establishes some criminal provisions governing a labor organization's political activities, and prohibits employees from authorizing automatic payroll deductions for contributions to a labor organization's political committee or fund except through an explicit, signed statement. (Update '96, pg. 25)
Prohibition of Negative Check-Off Act
The Prohibition of Negative Check-Off Act delineates the enforcement of financial arrangements that are not entered into by the payer. The Act declares that nonvoluntary payments and negative check-off plans are void as against public policy. (Update '96, pg. 27)
Uniform Photographic Records Act
Recent advances in optical image technology provide an excellent opportunity for businesses to reduce the expense and liability associated with processing, storing, and retrieving paper documents and other business records. Optical imaging allows the user to make an exact representation, or copy of an original document. Some acceptable forms of optical imaging include: microfilm, microfiche, paper copies, and photographs. The Uniform Photographic Records Act establishes changes in evidentiary rules, allowing photographic records to be used as evidence, eliminating the need for individuals to keep original documents. (Update '96, pg. 28)
Starting (Minimum) Wage Repeal Act
The Starting (Minimum) Wage Repeal Act repeals all starting (minimum) wage laws and preempts localities from enacting further laws which would attempt to establish a starting wage. (Update '96, pg. 29)
Resolution On Antitrust Reform
The Resolution on Antitrust Reform opposes changes to the federal antitrust laws that would preempt state laws relating to prohibitions of physicians from price-fixing, boycotts, and market allocation schemes. (Update '96, pg. 30)
Resolution In Opposition to Frivolous Complaints and Permit Extortion
The Resolution in Opposition to Frivolous Complaints and Permit Extortion recognizes that some unions have engaged in questionable pressure tactics to put open shop companies out of business or force them to join a union. These harassment and intimidation tactics have come in the form of frivolous and unwarranted complaints and environmental permit delays that are contrary to good public policy. This Resolution urges governments at all levels to enforce appropriate laws and to pass legislation to deter such tactics. The costs associated with defending frivolous complaints in legal and administrative actions have literally put some companies out of business. In the construction trades, such tactics can cause major delays, which can impose millions of dollars in additional costs. Often, when open shops concede to union demands, the complaints mysteriously disappear. (Update '96, pg. 31)
Resolution Opposing Ergonomic Regulations Based on Unsound Science
Some states and the federal government are experimenting with regulations which they believe will reduce back, arm, neck and other musculoskeletal strains and aches, often referred to as "repetitive stress injuries" (RSIs). The Resolution Opposing Ergonomic Regulations Based on Unsound Science recognizes that ergonomic regulations should not be mandated until such regulations are proven to actually reduce or prevent RSIs by sound scientific evidence. (Update '96, pg. 32)
Resolution In Opposition To Any Increase In the Starting (Minimum) Wage
The Resolution in Opposition to Any Increase in the Starting (Minimum) Wage recognizes that increasing the starting (minimum) wage is counterproductive. An increase in the starting wage makes it more difficult for employers to bring teenagers, entry-level workers, and others who need job experience, into the workforce where they can gain skills, training and confidence. (Update '96, pg. 33)
Resolution In Opposition to Salting (Harassing or Disruptive Union Organizing)
"Salting" abuse is the placing of trained union professional organizers and agents in a nonunion facility to harass or disrupt company operations, apply economic pressure, increase operating and legal costs, and ultimately put the company out of business. The objectives of the union agents are accomplished through filing frivolous and unfair labor procedure complaints or discrimination charges against the employer with the National Labor Relations Board, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Salting campaigns have been used successfully in the construction industry and are quickly expanding into other industries. The Resolution In Opposition to Salting (Harassing or Disruptive Union Organizing) affirms the principle that salting activities are contrary to good public policy and urges Congress to pass legislation so that employers are not required to employ any employee or agent of any other person, where the employee or agent seeks access to the employer's workplace in furtherance of their other employment or agency status. (Update '96, pg. 35)
Resolution in Support of Employee Involvement
The Resolution in Support of Employee Involvement recognizes that employee involvement structures, such as safety committees, quality circles and self-managed work teams, can be beneficial to a workplace. However, such structures are threatened by the U.S. Supreme Court's Electromation case where the Court held that such work teams may be illegal in non-union shops because the National Labor Relations Act prohibits employer "domination, interference or support" of a "labor organization," i.e., "company unions." Congress is considering legislation known as the TEAM Act which would prevent employee involvement structures from being interpreted as company-dominated unions. (Update '96, pg. 36)
Resolution In Opposition to Violence in Labor Disputes
The Anti-Racketeering Act of 1934 (The Copeland Act) marked the beginning of federal authority to prosecute and punish criminal acts of extortion affecting commerce. In response to union fears that the law could be applied to non-violent forms of protest, the bill was amended to read "[t]hat no court of the United States shall construe or apply any of the provisions of this Act in such a manner as to impair, diminish, or in any manner affect the rights of bona-fide labor organizations in lawfully carrying out the legitimate objectives thereof, as such rights are expressed in existing statutes of the United States." The Act was later amended by the Hobbs Act which provided that violent acts could be prosecuted under the Copeland Act, even where the acts were carried out in the name of legitimate objectives of bona fide labor organizations. The Hobbs Act was not meant to preempt state and local laws already in place to combat violence, but rather to supplement such laws. However, the corrections made to the Copeland Act by the Hobbs Act were nullified by the Supreme Court’s ruling in United States v. Enmons, which held that the Hobbs Act is not applicable to violence that takes place in "an effort to promote appropriate collective bargaining demands." The Resolution in Opposition to Violence in Labor Disputes affirms the principle that violence in labor disputes is contrary to good public policy and urges governments at all levels to enforce current mechanisms and pass further legislation to deter such violence. (Update '96, pg. 37)
Independent Contractor Definition Act
Many workers often characterize themselves as independent contractors due to beneficial tax incentives, etc. However, when the worker is injured on the job, the worker may want to characterize him/herself as an employee in order to draw from the workers’ compensation system, even though the worker may not have paid into the system. Confusion in the precise definition of an independent contractor has contributed to conflicting decisions by the courts on this matter. The Independent Contractor Definition Act simplifies the criteria used to define independent contractors with respect to private and public employees for the purpose of workers’ compensation. (Update '96, pg. 38)
Insurance Fraud Act
The Insurance Fraud Act establishes the crime of committing a fraudulent insurance act for individuals and insurers who knowingly and with intent to defraud, submit false claims or application or undertake deceptive sales or underwriting practices. The crime also applies to those who simply attempt or aid in committing such acts. Convictions must meet the "beyond a reasonable doubt" burden of proof. Penalties range from misdemeanors to felonies, and include license suspensions or revocations and restitution. The Act also establishes penalties for unlawful insurance acts for those whose actions "induce reliance." This law can be used against leaders of insurance fraud rings who are often able to escape prosecution since they cannot be proven to have committed or assisted in the commission of the various activities defined as crimes. Civil liability under this Act must only meet a "preponderance of the evidence" standard and violators are penalized by requiring that they forfeit their profits and pay attorney fees. In addition, the Act protects insurers and enlists them in efforts to fight fraud by granting broad civil immunity to anyone who shares information about suspected fraud. The Act is based on model legislation drafted by the Coalition Against Insurance Fraud. (Update '96, pg. 40)
Resolution on the National Association of Insurance Commissioners
The Resolution on the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) opposes the NAIC's current accreditation process and urges it to remain an advisory organization that does not attempt to use sanctions to force legislative action. Furthermore, the Resolution calls on the NAIC to create a mechanism whereby legislators are allowed to participate in the organization and provide input on legislative matters. (Update '96, pg. 51)
Resolution on the State Regulation of Insurance
The Resolution on the State Regulation of Insurance opposes any attempt by the federal government to regulate the insurance industry. Specifically, the Resolution calls on Congress to adopt a proportional liability scheme for cleaning up waste sites, giving states the maximum flexibility and capability to clean-up waste sites without passing clean-up costs to taxpayers through joint and several liability. (Update '96, pg. 52)
Prohibition on Compensation Deductions Act
The Prohibition on Compensation Deductions Act prohibits state agencies and political subdivisions of the state from deducting from the compensation of any employee any money from which a contribution is made to a political committee or to an intermediary through which any amount is provided to a political committee. (Update '96, pg. 53)
Resolution In Support of Reporting Requirements for Public Sector Unions
Public sector unions are not required to adhere to the same reporting requirements as private sector unions. This resolution calls for legislatures to pass reporting requirements for public sector unions similar to those for private sector unions. (Update '96, pg. 54)
Resolution on Release Time for Union Business
The Resolution on Release Time for Union Business opposes the practice of public sector union members receiving release time from their primary responsibilities to participate in union business. (Update '96, pg. 55)
Criminal Justice Task Force
Model Legislation in Update '96
Disarming a Law Enforcement Officer Act
This Act protects law enforcement officials who are unlawfully disarmed while either on or off-duty. The act of disarming a law enforcement officer is elevated to the status of the state's most serious felony. This Act establishes sentencing guidelines for committing this offense. (Update '96, pg. 58)
Drunk Driving Prevention Act
This bill requires mandatory alcohol education for new drivers; prohibition of open containers of beverage alcohol products in motor vehicles; administrative license revocation penalties for violation of the State’s driving under the influence laws, administrative license revocation penalties for persons under 21 years of age for driving with a measurable and detectable alcohol concentration; administrative license revocation for the illegal purchase or possession of beverage alcohol products by persons 21 years of age; and mandatory and drug testing of drivers involved in fatal motor vehicle accidents. (Update '96, pg. )
The Habitual Juvenile Offender Act
This Act strengthens the juvenile code by creating a special category of "habitual juvenile offender" for youths who have habitually and repeatedly committed serious felonies, sexual offenses, or used a gun in the course of committing a crime. The Act ensures that juveniles who habitually commit serious crimes are not treated with a "slap on the wrist." (Update '96, pg. 63)
Juvenile Identification Act
This Act allows juvenile suspects to be placed in a police line-up subject to the same conditions as adult suspects, but with the added provision of parent/guardian notification. (Update '96, pg. 65)
Parental Accountability Act
This bill requires that the parent or guardian of a juvenile attend each court hearing or proceeding unless the court excuses the parent or guardian for good cause shown. Failure of the parent or guardian to appear shall not be considered grounds for relief/adjournment, but may be grounds for contempt. (Update '96, pg. 66)
Education Task Force
Model Legislation in Update '96
School Board Freedom to Contract Act
This Act encourages the outsourcing/delivery of public services and programs (school management, cafeteria services, security services, crossing guards, transportation, custodial, maintenance etc.), under the direction of school boards, when said services/programs can be executed more efficiently and more cost-effectively by the private sector. (Update '96, pg. 68)
Energy, Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture Task Force
Model Legislation in Update '96
Environmental Audit Privilege and Qualified Disclosure Act
(Amended February 1995)
This Act provides confidentiality and limited protection from civil, criminal or administrative proceedings to companies that conduct voluntary internal environmental audits to identify, prevent and correct areas of noncompliance with federal, state and local environmental statutes. The Audit Privilege is designed to give industry greater incentive to comply with environmental laws; it does not apply to companies that intentionally and willfully disregard environmental laws or who have a history of continuous or repeated violations. Law enforcement authorities may request in writing or subpoena an audit report and request an in camera hearing to determine whether the report is subject to disclosure. (Update '96, pg. 70)
The Environmental Buffer Disclosure Act
This Act protects the rights of property owners whose real property contains an environmental buffer zone from the alleged devaluation of adjacent properties. (Update '96, pg. 76)
Environmental Education Act
This Act ensures that state agencies that educate the public about the environment do so in a manner that responsibly balances environmental considerations with those of humans. (Update '96, pg. 77)
Environmental Rules Oversight Act
This Act establishes a legislative committee to investigate adopted rules, proposed rules, and make recommendation to the full legislature. (Update '96, pg. 79)
The Environmental Laboratory Privatization Act
This Act requires that the state contract its routine environmental testing to private laboratories. It prohibits this state from using taxpayer dollars for the construction of new laboratories. (Update '96, pg. 81)
Interstate Ozone Transport Oversight Act
The Act requires public hearings and legislative review of any proposed interstate agreement related to the atmospheric transport of ozone, where such agreement contains emission control requirements in addition to those specified by the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990. Moreover, the emission control requirements exceeding those specified by federal law and the imbalance of interstate legislation can adversely affect state economic development, competition, employment and lead to out-of-control cost. This act is designed to bring constitutionality to the development and implementation of legislation by the federal government and to support economic and social growth. (Update '96, pg. 82)
This Act insures proper safeguards are in place to protect the rights of property owners guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution and state constitutions. (Update '96, pg. 84)
Property Owner Disclosure Act
This legislation requires that certain scientific data collected on private property by state environmental officials may not be compiled in a way that identifies the property owner's land unless expressly authorized by the property owner to do so. Incidental environmental information must be disregarded by state officials if such information falls outside the scope of their original reason for entering private property. (Update '96, pg. 86)
Right to Farm Act
An Act to define certain farm uses, operations, practices, and products; to provide certain disclosures; to provide for circumstances under which a farm shall not be found to be a public or private nuisance; to provide for certain powers and duties for certain state agencies and departments; and to provide for certain remedies for certain persons. (Update '96, pg. 87)
Wildlife Information Disclosure Act
This Act limits the disclosure of environmental information, specifically data on fish and wildlife, that is collected on private property. (Update '96, pg. 89)
The Wildlife Protection Tax-Incentive Act
This proactive legislation extends tax protection to landowners who elect to change some or all of their land use from agriculture to wildlife management. (Update '96, pg. 91)
Resolution on Electric Competition Transition Plan Committee
The Resolution directs the legislature to prepare a plan for the transition to customer choice in the generation, sale and transmission of electric energy where the state has not already prepared such a plan and such a plan is considered necessary to expedite reform. The Resolution was drafted to address the nationwide trend toward competition in the industry, a trend which will potentially benefit consumers and providers. The Resolution stipulates that any plan to transition to competition should assess relevant financial, legal and social issues. (Update '96, pg. 92)
Resolution on Environmental Laboratory Privatization
This resolution endorses federal and state efforts to use private labs for routine environmental testing. It condemns the use of taxpayer dollars for the construction of new environmental laboratories. (Update '96, pg. 93)
Resolution to Freeze CAFE Standards
This model resolution directs Congress to freeze Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards for cars and light trucks at current levels. (Update '96, pg. 94)
Environmental Justice Principles
These principles promote equal protection under environmental laws to every citizen in the state regardless of race, creed or economic status. The principles were drafted to address concerns that states have located industrial and pollution control facilities in communities based on the race or economic status of those communities. The principles state that land use and zoning decisions are best handled at the local level; states should not impose restrictions on local land use. (Update '96, pg. 95)
Policy Statement on Alternative Fuels
ALEC believes government should not mandate choices of motor vehicles or fuel. Instead, it should set reasonable emission performance standards and allow the private sector to develop vehicles and fuels that will meet these standards at an acceptable cost and with satisfactory vehicle performance. Any alternative fuel used should be environmentally cleaner than the fuel it will replace. ALEC believes the use of alternative fuels, such as propane, compressed natural gas, methanol, ethanol and reformulated gasoline, has the potential to help reduce air pollution. (Update '96, pg. 96)
Resolution on Global Climate Change
This Resolution urges the U.S. Congress to hold open hearings and take other actions deemed appropriate concerning the Rio Treaty and U.S. participation in the Conference of the Parties to the Rio Treaty, including an evaluation of the science review process upholding the Treaty. Congress should evaluate the economic, environmental and societal impact of imposing involuntary limits on greenhouse gas emissions, promote low cost and abundant energy, and withdraw from the Treaty if it entails great cost and discourages low cost and abundant energy from domestic sources. (Update '96, pg. 97)
Health and Human Services Task Force
Model Legislation in Update '96
An Act to Be Amended to ALEC’s Medical Savings Account Bill
This act would allow individuals to contribute tax-exempt dollars into a medical savings account. The act can be enacted as stand alone legislation to provide medical savings accounts to individuals or as an amendment to ALEC's model Medical Savings Account bill. This act will require a fiscal impact statement. (Update '96, pg. 100)
Market Based Medicaid Reform Act
This Act provides a cost-effective program for Medicaid recipients by offering the option of a Medical Assistance Account (MAA) with a catastrophic health policy. Under the supervision of the Department of Human Services, the MAA would allow $500 — $1,000 for an individual or $1,000 — $2,500 for a family to be deposited into an account which would cover all health related expenses for the recipient, after which the recipient is responsible for the payments of co-payments. Fifty percent of the remaining funds at year's end can be used in the form of a voucher for education, job training and child care services. This Act also allows for a debit card to be used to automatically debit services rendered, as well as for the use of the Department of Human Services to monitor the status of the account at years end. In addition to the MAA, the program offers traditional health insurance with co-payments or a prepaid health care delivery plan (HMO). (Update '96, pg. 101)
Senior Financial Security Program Act
This Act creates a state program to loan money for nursing home care costs to those aged 65 and over who cannot otherwise afford it, but do possess assets that can be used as security for the loan. A lien is placed on the participant’s assets and the state eventually collects the value of the loan when the assets are sold or upon the death of the participant of his/her last surviving dependant. If the value of the loan exceeds the value of the participant’s assets, the participant is placed in Medicaid or other public assistance program. (Update '96, pg. 105)
Resolution Calling for the Reform of the Food and Drug Administration
This Resolution urges Congress to reform the Food and Drug Administration to ensure that health care products, therapies and cures are brought to the American public as quickly as possible. It also suggests that the FDA should significantly cut back on its bureaucratic procedures and policies that tend to delay the time a drug or therapy hits the marketplace. (Update '96, pg. 108)
Resolution on State Use Tax on Prescription Drug Samples
Many states currently impose a state use tax on prescription drug samples, while at the same time exempting the sale of prescription drugs from this tax. Free drug samples gives patients the opportunity to try new therapies and begin treatment immediately. This Resolution requests that states pass legislation providing a tax exemption on prescription drug samples. (Update '96, pg. 109)
Resolution on Federal Health Insurance Reform Legislation
This Resolution helps prevent Congress from passing federal legislation that would impose restrictions such as guaranteed issue and community rating, or give the Secretary of Health and Human Services unnecessary authority over state health reform programs, clearly violating the states’ own rights to regulate their own health programs. (Update '96, pg. 110)
Resolution on Stop-Loss Insurance
This Resolution encourages state legislators not to support legislation or regulation which would impose arbitrary limits on stop-loss coverages issued to self-funded plans. By guarding against such legislation, the preservation of a free-market, voluntary employer-based health benefit system is maintained. (Update '96, pg. 111)
Kinship Care Act
This Act allows for the voluntary support of extended family members (the kinship network) in the care of children who may otherwise be under the supervision of a parent(s) on the welfare system, thus assisting that parent(s) from having to become dependent on government welfare programs. (Update '96, pg. 112)
Proof of Custody Act
This Act establishes a system which tracks whether the parent receiving welfare coverage actually has sole custody of his/her child. If one parent presents a child for welfare eligibility while the other parent (or the parents jointly) actually have legal custody of the child, a fraud has been committed. (Update '96, pg. 114)
Time Limits on AFDC Benefits Act
This Act establishes a time limit of twenty-four months on all AFDC or welfare program benefits. Sixty days prior to the end of the twenty-four months, all participants will be notified of his/her terminiation from the program. (Update '96, pg. 115)
Resolution on Federal Medicaid and Welfare Block Grants
This Resolution supports the adoption of Federal Medicaid and Welfare Block Grants, which would transfer both the financial authority and decision making power to the states to operate the programs as they so desire. (Update '96, pg. 116)
Resolution Urging Congress to Provide a Charitable Tax Credit
This Resolution encourages Congress to pass legislation that would provide a tax credit for charitable contributions to private and religious groups. (Update '96, pg. 117)
Tax and Fiscal Policy Task Force
Model Legislation in Update '96
Enabling Legislation for Public-Private Infrastructure Partnerships
This Act authorizes public entities to contract with the private sector to study, plan, design, construct, operate or maintain infrastructure systems (e.g. roads, bridges, airport, solid waste or wastewater treatment facilities, etc). The Act addresses such issues as private ownership during construction, the transition to public ownership, public standards, liability insurance, and financial arrangements. (Update '96, pg. 120)
Exemption From Sales and Use Taxes on Materials and Property Purchased for Research and Development Act
This Act exempts from sales and use taxes any tangible personal property for use or consumption in research and development in the experimental and laboratory sense. Such research and development shall not be deemed to include the ordinary testing or inspection of materials or products for quality control, efficiency surveys, management studies, consumer surveys, advertising promotions or research in connection with literary, historical or similar products. A sales and use tax exemption is provided for any retail sales of tangible personal property purchased for use or consumption directly and substantially in research and development in the experimental and laboratory sense. Fuel and utilities used directly and exclusively in research and development would also be exempt. (Update '96, pg. 123)
Personal and Business Flat Tax Act
This Act establishes a single, flat-rate tax on personal and business income. Though the ultimate flat tax on income is 0 percent or no income tax at all, if an income tax is imposed, a flat rate system is much preferable to a progressive rate structure. Currently, fourteen states have either a 0 percent tax on income or a flat rate tax on income. In this legislation, the single, flat rate is determined by each individual state. The personal or business tax rate may not be increased except when two-thirds supermajority of the legislators in each House of the legislature vote to increase the rate. A revenue cap is also imposed to deter excessive government spending. In this model, personal taxable income includes income from the following: wages, salary, pensions, and income derived from the individual’s operation of a business or as a partner in a business, or as an independent contractor as determined on federal income tax forms 1040C and 1040F after elimination of interest and dividend income. Personal income does not include income from capital gains, interest, dividend income or social security and other government benefits. A generous personal deduction is allowed based on filing status. In addition, a deduction for dependents is also allowed. The amount of the deductions are determined by the individual state. The taxable income for the purposes of the flat business income tax is determined by using the net profits as determined on federal corporate tax returns after elimination of interest, dividend and capital gains income that are included in those returns. Though this bill establishes a pure flat tax with only a standard personal exemption, some states may elect to retain popular deductions such as the mortgage interest or the charitable contribution deductions. (Update '96, pg. 125)
Super-majority requirements are based on the premise that tax increases fuel excessive government spending. Therefore, to more effectively control the budgetary process, the ability to raise taxes or enact new taxes should be made as politically difficult as possible, require broad consesus, and be held to a high standard of accountability. This Act calls for a constitutional provision requiring all tax and license fee impositions and increases to be approved by two-thirds of all members of each House. It provides for an exemption if there are insufficient revenues to pay interest on the state's debt. (Update '96, pg. 128)
Consumer Price Index Resolution
There is a consensus among leading economists that the present Consumer Price Index (CPI) overestimates the actual change in the "market-basket" mix of prices in the economy. This overestimation places unrealistic and unnecessary financial burdens on the federal budget, state budgets and budgets of local units of governments. This Resolution calls upon the Department of Labor to adopt a CPI standard that is reflective of the actual change in the "market-basket" mix of prices in the economy. (Update '96, pg. 129)
Resolution Requesting an Amendment to the Constitution on the Subject of Judicial Taxation
This resolution calls on the U.S. Congress to adopt a constitutional amendment that would re-affirm the separation of powers established by the constitution. The constitution states that the function of the judiciary is to interpret law not create law. This amendment would stop the judiciary’s ongoing encroachment into areas that constitutionally belong to the legislative branch of government, providing that no court of the United States shall have the power to instruct or order a state to levy or increase taxes. To date, 10 states (AK., AZ., CO., LA., MA., MO., NV., NY., SD., TN.) have petitioned Congress asking that this amendment to the Constitution be sent to the states for their approval. This resolution is, in large part, a reaction to the 1990 U.S. Supreme Court decision, Missouri v. Jenkins, where the high court affirmed a lower court’s decision which held that federal judges have the power to order an increase in state and local taxes. (Update '96, pg. 130)
Resolution to Repeal the Federal Unified Gift and Estate Tax
The Federal Unified Gift and Estate Tax, or the "Death Tax" has been identified as destructive to job opportunity and expansion, especially to minority entrepreneurs and family farmers. The "Death Tax" generates only a minimal amount of Federal Revenue, roughly only 1 percent. Yet enormous dollars are spent in collecting and administering these taxes and in useless lawyers’ and accountants’ time and expense as people try to avoid this punitive "double tax." In order to pay the taxes, heirs must sell family businesses. New owners frequently fail and jobs are lost and states lose revenue. This resolution calls upon the U.S. Congress to repeal the Federal Unified Gift and Estate Tax. (Update '96, pg. 132)
Resolution Opposing the United Nations Drive for Global Taxes
The Resolution urges Congress to oppose any legislation that would authorize the United Nations to levy taxes on American citizens or establish an international agency authorized to levy taxes on American citizens. (Update '96, pg. 133)
Calling Upon the U.S. Congress to Enact Legislation to Revise the Internal Revenue Code to Levy a Single Rate Tax, such as a Flat Tax
The current federal income tax system is economically destructive and inconsistent with the principles of a free society. Most economists and accountants agree the code is needlessly complex, and discourages savings, investment, economic growth and job creation. This resolution calls upon Congress to replace the current income tax system with a single rate tax system with a generous personal exemption, such as a flat tax, and ease the burden on all Americans and eliminate the bias against work, savings and investment. (Update '96, pg. 134)
Trade and Transportation Task Force
Model Legislation in Update '96
Resolution on the Federal Highway Trust Fund
The Resolution urges the U.S. Congress to use Highway Trust Fund monies primarily for the needs associated with the construction, reconstruction, rehabilitation, and maintenance of the Federal Highway System. The Resolution stipulates that all demonstration projects should be eliminated and that the Mass Transit Account of the Highway Trust Fund be rolled into the state Block Grant Program, with the states making the final decisions that affect the funding of their local transit operations. The Resolution was drafted in response to the Congress’s use of a portion of the Highway Trust Fund monies for mass transit projects and so-called "demonstration" projects (i.e. pork barrel projects). The Resolution recognizes the need for donor and donee states in order to have a successful nationwide transportation system and the need for the U.S. Department of Transportation’s use of a reasonable amount of money from the federal gas tax and highway user fees for safety and research purposes. (Update '96, pg. 138)
Resolution on Equitable Motor Carrier Regulatory Fees
The Resolution directs public utility and public service commissions to assess regulatory fees against motor carriers based on the extent of reduced regulatory oversight required of that motor carrier. The Resolution was drafted in response to a federal law effective in January 1995 preempting state economic regulation of any motor carriers of property. Many states still assess motor carriers a regulatory fee based upon the cost of regulating rates, routes, services, safety, and insurance, despite the fact that, in many cases, only two of these items are still subject to intrastate regulation. The Resolution further stipulates that excess state regulatory fees be refunded retroactively and that duplicative fees assessed by more than one agency be abolished. (Update '96, pg. 139)
Resolution to Repeal the Non-Transportation Federal Fuels Tax
The Resolution urges Congress to repeal the 1993 4.3 cents per gallon increase in the federal motor fuel tax and the 5.5 cents locomotive fuel tax. The Resolution was drafted in response to the federal government’s use of the fuel taxes for general revenue rather than for highway and rail infrastructure improvements. In addition, the tax increase puts a strain on Americans in the middle and lower income brackets. (Update '96, pg. 140)
ALEC offers a wide-array of books, white papers, studies and periodicals free to its members, and at a nominal cost to non-members. For further information, contact the ALEC Office of Public Affairs at (202) 466-3800.
Issue Paper Topics and Special Reports offered:
FYI News Magazine
Commerce and Economic Development
Energy, Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture
Health and Human Services
Tax and Fiscal Policy
Telecommunications and Information Technology
FYI is a news magazine providing sharp, concise coverage of contemporary state and national issues. Published 14 times a year, FYI covers a wide-range of topics, reporting on the status of legislation and major policy debates in state capitals and Washington. FYI also publishes Special Reports on critical issues and exclusive profiles of state and national figures.
FYI subscription (1 Year)...$80
Update `96: The Sourcebook of American State Legislation
October 1996, 160 pgs.
Containing more than 50 new pieces of model legislation, Update `96 offers innovative ideas on the cutting edge of the public policy debate. Added to the 258 bills in 1994-95 edition of the Sourcebook, Update `96 offers legislators a complete, free market legislative agenda addressing the major issues in America today. Included in Update `96 is a revised Annotated Index to the entire library of ALEC model bills.
Order Code: 9609...$50.00
The Sourcebook of American State Legislation 1994-1995
This two volume set contains more than 250 model bills and is the single most important piece ALEC publishes. The model bills in the Sourcebook were developed cooperatively with the private sector ensuring that they are common sense solutions to the challenges facing the states.
Business and Labor
Criminal Justice and Substance Abuse
Empowerment, Opportunity and Urban Poverty
Environment, Energy and Natural Resources
Public Health and Safety
Real Estate, Banking and Financial Services
Tax and Fiscal Policy
Telecommunications and Information Technology
The 1994-95 Sourcebook (order code: SB01) may be ordered for $120.00+ $5.00 for shipping and handling. Single volumes of the Sourcebook may be ordered for $75.00 each (a separate Annotated Index is include at no charge) + $2.00 shipping and handling.
Complete Set: Update `96 and the 1994-95 Sourcebook
The 1994-95 Sourcebook and Update `96 may be ordered as a complete set for only $150.00 + $5.00 shipping and handling!
Order Code 9610
Legislative Issue Briefs
1995, Vol. I, II and Appendix
Arming state legislators with analysis of all the critical issues facing the nation today, this third edition of the Legislative Issue Briefs is invaluable not only to ALEC members but to those individuals concerned with intelligent public policy. These volumes not only identify the major issues, they offer concrete, common sense solutions to those problems.
Order code: GN01...$120.00 for the set
GN01...$85.00 for Volume I
GN03...$40.00 for Volume II
The State Factor: Taxation Through Litigation, A Bad Way to Balance State Budgets
Vol. 21, No. 2, March 1995
Faced with perceived revenue shortages, several states are attempting to raise revenue through the civil justice system by unfairly limiting defendants' rights in court to recoup expenditures for Medicaid recipients.
Order code: CJ07...$10.00
The State Factor: Punitive Damages Law Reform is the Responsibility of State Legislators
Vol. 20, No. 8, July 1994
Recent Supreme Court cases have suggested that punitive damages awards can be limited by the Due Process Clause. However they have failed to establish any meaningful guidelines that would allow the law to be imposed equitably. It is up to the states to restore fairness in the adjudication of torts.
Order code: CJ06...$5.00
The State Factor: Absolute Product Liability in an Afternoon: Why the Parameters of Product Liability Law Must be Established by Legislators
Vol. 20, No. 3, March 1994, 5 pgs.
State courts have enacted absolute liability laws retroactively, making manufacturers responsible for virtually unforeseeable circumstances regarding their products. State legislatures need to enact laws to prevent this injustice.
Order code: CJ05...$5.00
The State Factor: Legislation to Limit Protective Orders: An Invasion of Privacy
Vol. 18, No. 4, March 1992, 8 pgs.
A response to the movement led by the American Trial Lawyers Association (ATLA), to limit protective orders. ATLA has characterized protective orders as "secrecy agreements" that restrict information regarding dangerous products or practices that the public has a need to know. In reality, they are crucial to protecting intellectual property.
Order code: CJ04...$5.00
COMMERCE AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
The State Factor: Restrictive Franchising Laws: Unfair Restraint on the Right to Contract
Vol. 22, No. 6, August 1996, 12 pgs.
Most would argue that government has no business interfering in private relationships. Why, then, do governments make laws that intrude upon private relationships? This State Factor focuses on two franchising laws that interfere with the right to contract between franchisors and franchisees: sales laws that force financial disclosure to prospective franchisees, and relationship laws that mandate the conduct of both parties regardless of the terms and conditions of the franchise agreement.
Order code: 9607...$10.00
The State Factor: Creating Constitutional and Common Law Conflicts
Vol. 20, No. 2, January 1994, 4 pgs.
Predictable and enforceable contract rights are essential for a sound economy. Laws interfering with contractual obligations are not only bad for the economy, but may be unconstitutional as well.
Order code: LB07...$5.00
The State Factor: Reforming The Workers' Compensation System
Vol. 18, No. 12, December 1992, 6 pgs.
The current workers' compensation system is ineffective and open to fraud. Reforms are needed in the administration of programs, dispute resolution, the delivery of benefits and containing costs.
Order code: LB06...$5.00
The State Factor: Disclosing The Truth: The Benefits of Seller Disclosure Statements for Both Buyers and Sellers in Residential Real Estate
Vol. 18, No. 14, December 1992, 6 pgs.
Seller disclosure statements protect home buyers and sellers at virtually no cost. By providing buyers with comprehensive and reliable information, seller disclosure legislation can alleviate the burden of litigation which the current "oral disclosure" procedure places upon the court system. Included is a example of a seller disclosure statement form.
Order code: BF03...$5.00
The State Factor: Understanding 24-Hour Coverage
Vol. 17, No. 11, September 1991, 14 pgs.
An in-depth analysis of various policy proposals to integrate the coverage of state workers' compensation programs with other public and private insurance programs such as health care.
Order code: LB05...$7.00
Books and Special Reports
Report Card on Crime and Punishment
October 24, 1994
Using data from the FBI, the Report Card on Crime and Punishment analyzed the relationship between crime rates and incarceration rates from 1960 to 1992. The study discovered that a dramatic reduction in incarceration rates from 1960 to 1980 coincided with a huge increase in crime rates, with the most lenient states experiencing the greatest increases in crime. The study also discovered that the states have generally embarked on stricter incarceration policies since then, with the result that crime rates have stabilized and actually gone down in the toughest states.
Order code: CR07...$20.00
Evidence of a Failed System: A Study of Pretrial Release Agencies in California
April 1995, 34 pgs.
This one-year study compared the performance of government pretrial release agencies with private bail agents in the supervision of defendants in three California counties. The study discovered that, despite the fact that the most serious accused offenders were more likely to be released under the supervision of private bail agents, they were more than three times more likely to appear for trial than defendants released under the supervision of government pretrial release agencies.
Order code: CR06...$25.00
The State Factor: Criminals on the Streets, A Citizen's Right to Know?
Vol. 21, No. 3, April 1995
Government agencies responsible for law enforcement and public safety have remarkably few reporting requirements placed on them. With numerous corrections policy options available, it is not surprising that the criminal justice systems of some states perform better than others. However, few states require their corrections agencies to provide data to the public on the effectiveness of the public policy options they select.
Order code: CR05...$10.00
The State Factor: Reasserting State and Local Control Over Prisons and Jails
Vol. 21, No. 1, March 1995
Under the guise of enforcing the 8th Amendment's prohibition on cruel and unusual punishment, federal judges have micromanaged the operation of prisons and jails. But states have numerous options available to them to reduce the cost of incarceration in order to adhere to federal mandates and to actually take back control of their incarceration facilities.
Order code: CR04...$5.00
The State Factor: Conditional Early Release; Relieving Prison and Jail Overcrowding
Vol. 20, No. 11, November 1994
The tougher incarceration policies of the 1980s and 1990s are being stymied by liberal federal judges who have set unreasonable inmate caps which would require the release of dangerous criminals. Among the options available to states is the establishment of private bail probation and parole systems, which would reduce the recidivism rates of those who must be released early to comply with federal court orders.
Order code: CR03...$5.00
The State Factor: Bail Reform: Restoring Accountability to the Criminal Justice System
Vol. 20, No. 1, January 1994, 4 pgs.
Pre-Trial Release Services use taxpayers money to post bail for sixty five percent of defendants facing criminal charges. This leaves no incentive for the defendant to appear in court, and has little deterrent effect on criminals.
Order code: CR01...$5.00
Report Card on American Education 1995
May 1995, 36 pgs.
The data and analysis in the third edition of ALEC's Report Card on American Education 1995 shows that student achievement in our public schools remains stagnant even though spending continues to climb. This state-by-state analysis uses three key indicators of student achievement based on the most recent available data for school year 1994-95. The results show that NAEP reading test scores have declined, graduation rates have dropped and college entrance exam scores have not demonstrated any meaningful gains. The Report Card also documents the rising costs of education. The last two Report Cards revealed dramatic increases in per-pupil spending, average teacher salaries and the ratio of teachers to students that have occurred over the past two decades. These trends continue. The 1995 Report Card shows per-pupil spending and average teacher salaries both rose 0.2 percent; the pupil-to-teacher ratio dropped 0.4 percent, and the pupil-to-non-teacher ratio dropped 0.8 percent. The conclusion of this state-by-state analysis is that there is no meaningful statistical correlation between spending and student achievement.
Order Code: 9601...$20.00
ENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, NATURAL RESOURCES AND AGRICULTURE
The State Factor: The New Paradigm in Environmental Enforcement: Environmental Audit Privilege and Immunity Legislation
Vol. 22, No. 1, May, 1996, 16 pgs.
ALEC's latest State Factor demonstrates why self-audit environmental laws are beneficial to both industry and the environment. It crushes four myths about self-audit privileges, reveals the flaws in the EPA's policies and philosophies regarding the laws, and provides an update of legislation in the states. The authors thoughtfully examine and then dismiss arguments against self-audit laws, deeming them unfounded. The conclusion they reach is that the pervasive and voluminous regulation that has evolved over the years is inferior to a "model that focuses on and encourages voluntary compliance." Such a policy would allow regulatory agencies "to direct their limited enforcement resources at those among the regulated community that do not strive to be good citizens."
Order Code: 9602...$10.00
The State Factor: Ozone Transport Assessment Group: Important Decisions, Limited Representation
Vol. 22, No. 2, July 1996, 5 pgs.
A warning for legislators: the Ozone Transport Assessment Group (OTAG) may soon be making de facto laws that your state will be forced to follow. This paper states that "very serious measures" demanded by OTAG could cost "billions of dollars," and concludes that concerned public officials and private citizens should push for more representation in OTAG and a voice in its final recommendations.
Order code: 9603...$10.00
The State Factor: Questionable Policy Based on Uncertain Science: Global Warming and the Rio Climate Treaty
Vol. 21, No. 6, June 1995, 12 pgs.
The scientific theory used by the Rio Climate Treaty to measure Global Warming is out of date. Though still not fully understood, there has been no statistically significant warming since 1978. Perhaps the Rio Treaty needs to be reevaluated before jobs are lost.
Order code: ER13...$10.00
The State Factor: Pesticides and Food Safety: Separating Fact from Fiction
Vol. 18, No. 9, December 1992, 25 pgs.
Pesticides play an important part in ensuring an affordable and nutritional food supply. This paper explains the critical role state legislators play in securing food safety policies based on sound science and rational standards of public safety.
Order code: AG02...$10.00
The State Factor: The Attack of the Killer Watermelons: Flat Earth Science and Zero Risk
Vol. 17, No. 4, February 1991, 12 pgs.
This is a reprint of a speech given by the late nationally syndicated columnist Warren Brookes at ALEC's 17th Annual meeting. Mr. Brookes emphasizes that the biggest threat to our environment is the environmental extremists whom he calls "watermelons" - green on the outside but fundamentally red on the inside.
Order code: ER10...$7.00
HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
Books and Special Reports:
Keeping the Promise: A Comprehensive Health Care Plan for the States
1992, 183 pgs.
With health care as the most important issue of the decade, ALEC's Comprehensive Health Care Plan provides free-market reform which increases access for the uninsured and reduces costs, while maintaining the high standards of quality that have made the American health care system the best in the world. The plan does this by focusing on five critical areas of reform: Insurance Reform, Medicaid Reform, Long-Term Care, Medical Liability Reform, and Rural Health Care.
Order code: HC12...$19.95
The State Factor: Lessons from the States: An Overview of Government Mandated Health Care Reforms in Three States: Florida, New York and Washington
Vol. 22, No. 4, July 1996, 8 pgs.
As the health care debate continues to garner attention, this edition of The State Factor provides insight on the failure of state-run health initiatives by examining the systems in three states: Florida, New York and Washington. The conclusion is that too much government control leads to unanticipated consequences that do harm to health insurance markets.
Order Code: 9605...$10.00
The State Factor: Anti-Discount Pricing of Pharmaceutical Products: An Anti-Consumer Policy for Health Care Reform
Volume 21, No. 4, April 1995, 8 pgs.
Several states have considered prohibiting pharmaceutical manufacturers from offering discount pricing to their customers. Restricting the market, however, will not relieve the differential pricing of drugs, and restricting the market is both anti-competitive and harmful to customers.
Order code: HC11...$10.00
The State Factor: Forgotten By The System: Rural Health Care in America
Vol. 18, No. 13, December 1992, 8 pgs
Rural Americans often have tremendous difficulties in gaining access to health care because of a limited number of facilities and doctors available. Policy solutions are provided that will help states expand and improve rural health care.
Order code: HC08...$5.00
The State Factor: Private Long-Term Care Insurance: The Solution For the States
Vol. 18, No. 7, August 1992, 8 pgs.
This issue paper advocates that private long-term care insurance offers both the consumer and the nation the most cost-effective method of providing long-term care services to the nation's rapidly growing elderly population.
Order code: HC07...$5.00
The State Factor: Opportunity Not Dependency: The Oregon Full Employment Program
Vol. 18, No. 6, June 1992, 12 pgs.
Few problems plague state governments today more than the seemingly never-ending demand for "welfare." This issue paper emphasizes the principle that "only work works" and discusses the nation's most hardheaded and potentially most effective welfare reform program, the Oregon Full Employment Program.
Order code: EP02...$7.00
Books and Special Reports
Sovereignty of the People and Devolution: An Agenda for the Restoration of the Tenth Amendment
May 1995, 60 pgs.
A handbook on state sovereignty and devolution, the subject is explored from an historical perspective and a constitutional viewpoint. Using a wide variety of works, speeches and studies from which they draw their conclusion, the authors show that the state-federal relationship that many recognize today as the traditional alliance has strayed far from its intended purpose.
Order code: SS01...$20.00
TAX AND FISCAL POLICY
Books and Special Reports
The Crisis in America's State Budgets
A Blueprint for Budget Reform
1993, 168 pgs.
The 1990s brought an abrupt end to the escalating stream of revenues that spurred the massive growth in state government spending during the 1980s. The key to restoring fiscal stability to state budgets is the enactment of policies which control excessive spending. The Crisis in America's State Budgets provides a blueprint for fiscal responsibility. Included are discussions of spending limitations, revenue forecasting, privatization and controlling public employee compensation.
Order code: TF16...$19.95
PEOPLE, MARKETS, AND GOVERNMENT: HOW ECONOMIC POLICY CREATES WEALTH AND POVERTY
1994, 68 pgs.
Government economic policies have tangible affects on every citizen and the need for sound policies is enormous. People, Markets, and Government outlines policies that will contribute to growth and explains why. The role of elected officials cannot be underestimated in studying the economic cycle.
Order code: TF17...$20.00
The State Factor: Strategies for Balancing State Budgets
Vol. 20, No. 5, April 1994, 25 pgs.
More and more states are running into budget problems as a result of increased spending, not a decrease in revenues. The answer to the problem is the reform of state spending, taxation, and the budgetary process.
Order code: TF15...$20.00
The State Factor: America's Protected Class III: The Unfair Advantage of Public Employees
Vol. 20, No. 4, April 1994, 34 pgs.
Another publication in the America's Protected Class series. In addition to another year of data, APC III finally encompasses federal employment, as well as adding an analysis of public staff sizes and the hourly compensation of state employees.
Order code: TF14...$20.00
The State Factor: Voting With Their Feet II: The Economic Consequences of Cross-Border Activity in the Southeastern U.S.
Vol. 19, No. 4, August 1993, 69 pgs.
Increases in excise taxes on certain goods may not produce the desired income for the state. Cross-border activity has serious economic affects resulting in potentially large gains or losses for states. This study analyses the shifts in revenue due to taxation in seven southeastern states.
Order code: TF13...$20.00
Issue Analysis: Dispelling the Myths of the Runaway Convention
Vol. 19, No. 1, January 1993, 5 pgs.
A clarification of the process of calling for a limited constitutional convention, and discussion of the legal and political safeguards of a limited convention.
Order code: TF11...$5.00
The State Factor: Voting With Their Feet: A Study of Tax Incentives and Economic Consequences of Cross-Border Activity in New England
Vol. 18, No. 11, August 1992, 60 pgs.
A Price Waterhouse study focusing on the effect excise taxes have on the shifts in economic activity between six New England states. A four year study using purchasing patterns of cigarettes, gasoline and alcohol as indicators.
Order code: TF09...$20.00
Issue Analysis: The Limited Constitutional Convention
January 1991; revised January 1992, 3 pgs.
A summary of the limited convention and documentation which the states have acted under the authority of Article V.
Order code: TF04...$5.00
The State Factor: The National Birthright of State Legislators: Article V of the U.S. Constitution
Vol. 17, No. 6, May 1991, 17 pgs.
This issue paper discusses the history, role and importance of Article V of the U.S. Constitution to state legislators. The paper reveals why the power to ratify or call a convention by the states is as important as it was 200 years ago.
Order code: TF05...$10.00
The State Factor: A Way to Reform Congress: The Limited Constitutional Convention
Vol. 17, No. 2, January 1991, 12 pgs.
An examination of the convention process provided in Article V of the U.S. Constitution which demonstrates its vital importance in the restoration of federalism.
Order code: TF03...$10.00
TELECOMMUNICATIONS AND INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
The State Factor: Telecommunications Taxation Reform
Vol. 22, No. 3, July 1996, 8 pgs.
With passage of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, the industry has now entered a new competitive environment. State legislators, though, might not think so highly of the law in practical terms as opposed to philosophical terms it is now up to them to sort out the many complexities of the law. This paper will provide legislators with helpful guidelines for administering tax laws in the new telecommunications environment. "This paper is designed as a primer to educate policymakers on the changing nature of the communications industry and how the current state and local tax structure is no longer appropriate in this competitive environment."
Order code: 9604...$10.00
The State Factor: How the States are Entering the Information Age
Vol. 21, No. 8, November 1995
Can you access the statehouse library, or keep up-to-date on legislative activity, from your living room? Can you find state job listings, or renew your fishing license at the touch of a button? Not surprisingly, the states are the innovators in governmental efforts to get "on-line." This new State Factor is an invaluable reference that lists, state-by-state, information technology resources provided by state governments.
Order code: TC13...$15.00
The State Factor: Competitive Telecommunications Four Principles for Free Market Reform
Vol. 21, No. 7, November 1995
In this edition of the State Factor, the four basic principles on which a competitive telecommunications industry should rest are established. These guiding principles would ensure that free markets, fair competition and universal service are guaranteed in the telecommunications marketplace of the 21st century. Included is a glossary of telecommunications terminology.
Order code: TC12...$7.00
The State Factor: The Impact of Competition on Universal Service in the Local Telecommunications Marketplace
Vol. 20, No. 9, November 1994
As the telecommunications industry transitions to a free market regulatory framework, the current policy of cross-subsidies to achieve universal service becomes difficult to maintain. The goal of universal service should be maintained through a program more targeted to reach only those truly in need and all telecommunications companies should be required to contribute to funding such a program.
Order code: TC11...$5.00
The State Factor: Modification of Final Judgment (MFJ) Reform: Long Distance Services
Vol. 20, No. 6, May 1994, 5 pgs.
Using the free market's competitive forces, America will be on the forefront of the information superhighway. Advanced telecommunications could assist making fiscal realities fit social needs, but not if regulations continue to limit the expansion of markets.
Order code: TC10...$5.00
The State Factor: The Distance Learning Revolution: Revitalizing American Education Through Telecommunications
Vol. 19, No. 6, May 1993, 12 pgs.
There is a great need for a sound educational infrastructure that will attract businesses and industry to states, and equip all citizens to meet the world-wide challenges of the information age. Distance learning is the transmission of educational information and interaction of geographically dispersed individuals or groups through a single medium or a combination of audio, video and data. This paper stresses that states that have limited access to the latest technologies are unlikely to be successful.
Order code: TC09...$7.00
The State Factor: Telecommunications: The Need for Policy and Planning
Vol. 19, No. 2, January 1993, 5 pgs.
An update on the development of telecommunications networks for state agencies and institutions. This paper provides guidance to state legislators on how to assess the need for networks, and explains various options available through the private sector.
Order code: TC08...$5.00
The State Factor: A Market Approach to Spectrum Allocation
Vol. 18, No. 1, January 1992, 4 pgs.
A discussion of the need for ways to allocate spectrum equitably in a responsible manner to serve the public purpose. As a result of the radio spectrum becoming overcrowded, with many competing uses and finite limits on the amount of usable spectrum, a policy on the management of spectrum allocation must be devised.
Order code: TC06...$5.00
The State Factor: Public-Private Partnerships: A Powerful Tool for Solving States' Infrastructure Needs
Vol. 22, No. 5, July 1996, 13 pgs.
Changing trends in infrastructure construction have resulted in the growth of public-private partnerships. Governments at all levels are seeking ways to find adequate resources to meet the needs for both new infrastructure and to replace, repair and rehabilitate existing infrastructure. These trends are likely to continue, resulting in an increased reliance on the combined resources of the public and private sectors.
Order code: 9606...$10.00
The State Factor: Reinventing Transit
Vol. 19, No. 5, December 1993, 27 pgs.
Public-private competition and entrepreneurial services are "reinventing transit" across the nation. Only by making transit a viable alternative to the automobile will there be any environmental benefits or a reduction in traffic congestion.
Order code: TR04...$20.00
The State Factor: The Livable American City
Vol. 19, No. 3, August 1993, 17 pgs.
The state of the environment is a constant concern for those living in urban areas. Strategies to reduce air pollution include more efficient auto use, telecommuting, and policies to improve transit delivery, all attempt to make American cities more livable.
Order code: TR03...$10.00
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