Highlights of the 2020 General Assembly Session: 2021 Enacted Budget and Legislation

The $12.7 billion Fiscal Year 2021 budget was finally passed by the Rhode Island General Assembly and signed into law by Governor Gina Raimondo in December 2020. This budget was described as a “skinny” budget, meaning that no new measures were included vis-à-vis the FY2020 budget. That is, almost nothing proposed in January 2020 by Governor Raimondo in her recommended …

Executive Director Search

Stepping Back Read Rachel’s announcement of her stepping back as executive director and transitioning to a Senior Policy Analyst role at the Institute. Dear Friend, I’m writing to share some big news. Following five years as Executive Director, I have decided to take a step back from leadership of the Institute. I am grateful to have had the privilege of …

EPI calls for alternatives to budget cuts, including raising taxes

By Chris Bergenheim – August 31, 2020 11:47 am PROVIDENCE – The economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has been projected to cause a massive revenue shortfall for Rhode Island for fiscal 2021. The R.I. House Fiscal Office projects that the state will contend with a $617.7 million shortfall for the year, which will need to be addressed by the …

How to Cover Rhode Island’s Revenue Shortfall

With the economic fallout from the COVID-19 crisis, Rhode Island faces an estimated revenue shortfall of at least $617.7M for FY2021. As policymakers design the state’s FY2021 budget, they will consider this shortfall and means of addressing it. Contrary to claims that cutting spending will prove an absolute necessity, policymakers have options for avoiding destructive cuts — cuts that will …

The End of the Beginning

Excerpt from The End of the Beginning, Rhode Island Monthly, August 2020 Issue by Ellen Liberman … As generous as the State’s corporations and individuals have been, their contributions cannot replace the deep erosion of gove­ment benefits to needy families and individuals. For example, the current unemployment insurance benefits system, designed in the wake of the Great Depression, does not …

Statement from EPI in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter Movement

The Economic Progress Institute mourns with and shares in the anger of the Black community following the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, Ahmaud Arbery, and the many other victims of white supremist violence. Police brutality and other acts of violence are an integral part of a long and continuing legacy of American racism. As an organization committed …

Rhode Islanders Don’t Move Because of Tax Policy

In order to grow thriving families and communities and a prosperous economy, Rhode Island depends upon tax revenues to provide for critical public goods and services. Rhode Island’s personal income tax system is moderately progressive, meaning that individuals and families with the lowest incomes pay a lower percentage than those with higher incomes. Those with the highest incomes can afford …