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Getting what you pay for?

By Mitch Coffman
April 19, 2010
My husband is a Sony fan. He has strong preferences following many years of selling consumer electronics. I personally have not been such a careful student of the variances between brands of stereos, TVs and DVD players. However, my marriage has taught me (among other things) Sony’s products are more dependable, last longer and are […]

No Union Left Behind

By Mitch Coffman
April 13, 2010
In the third presidential debate, Senator Obama said, “I support charter schools and pay for performance for teachers. Doesn’t make me popular with the teachers union.” School choice observers noticed the change in Democratic rhetoric and were intrigued, but once he was elected we were certain President Obama would pick some edu-flack to head his […]

New lawnmowers for some, while Boise taxpayers foot the bill

April 10, 2010
A program to help 50 Boise residents trade in their gas-powered lawn powers for new electric models will cost taxpayers $4,850, even though there's little evidence to support the notion that the program will help the environment. This is Boise’s second year participating in an event called “Mow Down Pollution,” modeled after a Canadian environmental […]

School districts dip into reserve funds for raises

March 30, 2010
Despite the 2009 legislature freezing funds for time on the job pay raises for the state’s public school teachers, Idaho’s two largest school districts awarded the increases anyway. They were obligated by multi-year contracts with local teachers’ associations. State funding for “step”, or years on the job pay raises, was cut off in last year’s […]

IFF to stand with state in legal action to block health insurance mandate

By Wayne Hoffman
March 19, 2010
Idaho Freedom Foundation Executive Director Wayne Hoffman said Thursday the IFF will stand with the state of Idaho and join in any legal action to keep Idahoans free from having to buy health insurance under a federally-passed health insurance mandate. Gov. Butch Otter on Wednesday signed the Idaho Health Freedom Act, which says residents of […]

Legislature unwilling to eliminate agencies, goes with tax credit instead

By Wayne Hoffman
March 16, 2010
The state Legislature will conclude its work this winter having determined that there's not a single agency in all of state government that can be eliminated. The conclusion could be interpreted to mean that every last agency is a necessary and proper component of the state government and that there is no duplication of services […]

Lawmakers reluctant to embrace innovation

By Wayne Hoffman
March 8, 2010
The early graduation idea promoted by Reps. Steven Thayn of Emmett and Brandon Durst of Boise is the most innovative education concept to hit the Statehouse since the late 1990s. The Thayn/Durst plan, which passed the House 61-7 last month, would start a pilot project that would allow students to graduate early. That would save […]

School district and state employee health plans: is change needed?

February 13, 2010
A review of school district health programs shows wide variances in what taxpayers are paying to buy health insurance for public employees across the state and even in neighboring school districts. The reason: districts are buying into plans with bells and whistles, such as extremely low deductibles or no deductibles at all, that would cost […]

IFF poll: Overwhelming support for tax cuts

By Wayne Hoffman
January 12, 2010
A poll commissioned by the Idaho Freedom Foundation shows nearly a supermajority of Idahoans support cutting taxes to help boost the economy. Research and consulting firm Greg Smith and Associates conducted the poll December 10-15, 2009 (excluding weekends) on behalf of the Idaho Freedom Foundation, Idaho's only free market education and research center. The study […]

Tax cuts deserve consideration

By Wayne Hoffman
December 2, 2009
State lawmakers and the governor finally are having conversations that should have been had years ago - how to cut the size of government. That's great. Lawmakers have an extraordinary opportunity to get state spending under control, to eliminate waste and excess in every agency. But let's not stop there. Too little is being said […]
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