Per-student spending is an easy-to-use measure by which taxpayers can evaluate public school spending and efficiency. This report finds a more accurate number for taxpayers to use.
This Briefing revises high-tech manufacturing, one sector that could benefit from state investment and has been touted in the past by government officials as a way to expand Florida's economic diversity.
The Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy’s Teen Trendsetters program is one great example of a high-quality mentor initiative. This Florida TaxWatch fiscal and economic analysis quantifies the value of the increases in reading scores and positive social impacts of the program.
This Economic Commentary looks at the potential impact on taxpayers from the rise of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
Presented to the Bond Oversight Committee on February 27, 2017, this report examines the SMART program quarterly report for Q2 of FY2017.
Governor Rick Scott recently released his $83.474 billion proposed budget, which will be considered by the Legislature as it crafts the state’s new spending plan.
Florida residents come out in droves to take advantage of sales tax holidays, the subject of this report. These ever-popular tax breaks allow Florida shoppers to take advantage of tax-free purchases on certain items.
With an addition of 257,000 jobs in 2016, Florida continues to rise from the Great Recession. Over the past year, nearly all of Florida's major industries have seen employment gains, and the unemployment rate has fallen to 4.8.
To identify areas in need of improvement, this report is a longitudinal analysis of the state’s sentencing, incarceration, prisoner, and correctional budget histories.
The 2016 Annual Report - Bridging the Gap Between Taxpayers and their Government
As we close the door on a strong 2016 for Florida’s economy, it is time to look at what could lie ahead for the state in 2017.
Leading a corrections department and prisons is challenging. A successful leader mustwork with government entities, employees, unions, and their accompanying agendas, all while simultaneously dealing with individuals that our society cannot tolerate. An effective corrections leader must balance what is good for inmates and staff with what is good for our shared society.
Lawmakers received a small measure of positive fiscal news from state economists this week. The General Revenue (GR) Estimating Conference met on December 12, 2016 and increased its revenue forecast by $119.3 million in the current year (FY2016-17) and by $22.6 million for the next budget year (FY2017-18).
Presented to the Bond Oversight Committee on November 14, 2016, this report examines the SMART program quarterly report for Q1 of FY2017.
In addition to the serious public health risk for Floridians, the Zika virus is also creating risk for the already tight state budget outlook for next year.
Honey bees enable the production of more than 90 commercially grown crops here in the United States. Around the world, more than one-third of food production relies on pollination, which is important to understand because, over the past 60 years, the number of honey bee colonies in the United States has decreased steadily.
Every year, Florida public agencies are required to develop so-called strategic plans. But instead of being strategic and linking to adding measurable value to Floridians, these efforts shift to the planning of tactics and assume that existing agency goals are useful or even correct. And each year we are often disappointed with what our agencies deliver to our citizens. This disappointment comes from agencies not asking and answering the right questions.
This edition of the 2016 Voter Guide details the four amendments on the November 8 ballot. We have provided a notes sheet on page 30 of this Guide, where you can jot down anything you want to remember about the amendments, and take it with you to the polls.
The 2017 Legislature will be facing a very tight budget year. After a string of three straight years with projected budget surpluses ranging from $336 million to $846 million, it is now estimated that during the next legislative session there will be just enough money to fund a continuation budget for FY2017-18. What’s more, significant budget shortfalls loom in subsequent years.
Over the years, Florida TaxWatch has produced several reports examining how Florida fares, relative to other states, in receiving grants and aid from the federal government. Consistent with our past research, this new analysis shows Florida continues to receive far less than its fair share of federal grant dollars.
This report recommends the implementation of a “Judicial Safety Valve” that would give judges the discretion to deviate from mandatory minimums for low-level offenders, but maintain the rights of victims, offenders, their attorneys, and the state to have input on sentencing decisions at sentencing hearings.
Florida TaxWatch has studied the applications submitted to the County by International Atlantic, LLC, and this report details the findings of that review.
State contracts typically referred to as either performance-based contracting or pay for performance (PFP) are specially formulated so that contracted entities are paid for the outcomes or results of their work, and not just the services that are provided.
Presented to the Bond Oversight Committee on August 29, 2016, this report examines the SMART program quarterly report for Q4.
This briefing explores Juvenile Pre-Arrest Diversion programs, which re-route certain juvenile offenders in ways that hold them accountable while sparing them from an arrest record and lessening the burden on taxpayers.