Source: Wall Street Journal
News
Sept. 28, 2017

The Supreme Court said Thursday it would consider whether public employees can be required to pay union dues, revisiting an issue that deadlocked the court after Justice Antonin Scalia’s death last year.

Under a 1977 Supreme Court precedent, states may authorize contracts between public agencies and their employee unions that require represented workers to pay dues, or an equivalent fee, for collective bargaining costs.

News
Sept. 27, 2017

U.S. families’ wealth and incomes rose across the board as the economic recovery continued in recent years, a shift after they stagnated for all but the most well-off in the aftermath of the recession, the Federal Reserve reported Wednesday.

Minority households and families with less education had larger proportional gains in income than others between 2013 and 2016, suggesting the fruits of the recovery spread to a wider swath of society, the Fed said.

News
Sept. 26, 2017

Weakness in the labor market doesn’t adequately explain why fewer men are working or seeking jobs, according to a new paper published by economist Scott Winship and the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. One big contributor is the rising number of men in their prime working years–aged 25 to 54–who are getting federal disability benefits, or report being disabled, and who are not actively searching for jobs, Mr. Winship concludes. This suggests there is less slack in the labor market—such as people who could be drawn in off the sidelines—than many policy makers believe.

News
Sept. 26, 2017

New research suggests programs aimed at helping low-income U.S. children, such as Head Start early childhood education and Medicaid health coverage, may have benefits not only for participating children but for their children as well. A recent working paper found the 1980s expansion of Medicaid programs to cover more low-income pregnant women led, years later, to their children giving birth to healthier babies. Another working paper found childhood access to Head Start led to better long-term outcomes in the next generation, including higher high-school graduation rates and reduced criminal behavior.

News
Sept. 18, 2017

California Democrats have finally found a cause that’s worth suspending their environmental passions. The United Automobile Workers are struggling for a presence in Tesla’s Fremont plant, and organized labor has called in a political favor.

Since 2010 California has offered a $2,500 rebate to encourage consumers to buy electric vehicles. But last week, at unions’ behest, Democrats introduced an amendment to cap-and-trade spending legislation that would require participating manufacturers to get a sign-off from the state labor secretary verifying that they are “fair and responsible in their treatment of workers.”

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