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NEW POLICY MEMO: 5 IDEAS TO REDUCE RED TAPE. The federal government estimates that American companies and taxpayers spent 8.8 billion hours filling out government paperwork in 2010 (equal to 1 million years). This week, PPI offers five ideas for saving time and trees by lightening the burden of government paperwork:

  • Reduce obstacles to small business success. Waive the first year of quarterly tax filing requirements for start-ups and small businesses.
  • Helping savers make better retirement decisions. Allow default e-delivery of retirement plan statements and documents.
  • Helping taxpayers better understand their benefits. Resume delivery of Social Security Statements by e-mail and add a "Medicare Statement."
  • Grow jobs. Fast-track paperwork reduction efforts with the best potential for job creation and require estimates of economic impact.
  • Build a more responsive government. Create a "silver scissors" challenge to solicit and reward creative paperwork reduction ideas.

Read HERE.

PPI HOME VALUES BATTLEGROUND INDEX HOLDS STEADY. Home values in the 16 states in our PPI battleground index stayed largely flat in January, the latest month for which numbers are available. Across all 16 states, median home values are down a weighted average of 18% from where they were in October 2008.  Senior Fellow Jason Gold goes behind the numbers HERE

SMART, SIMPLE, DOABLE: END LOCAL START-UP FEES FOR NEW BUSINESSES. D.C. policymakers should take note of creative job-creation strategies on the state and local level. For example, Mayor Michael Nutter of Philadelphia enacted a new law to get rid of most start-up fees for businesses that open up shop in the city. These fees, which range from $2,000 to $5,000, were a significant obstacle for new Philly businesses. This proposal is part of a suite of tax relief ideas aimed at spurring new start-ups in the city. Read HERE.


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