August 2011 Blog Archives

Unemployment Insurance: An Overview

Unemployment insurance (UI) is a joint venture between the federal government and the states: each state sets its own recipient critera based on federal guidelines. The federal government collects taxes from employers, which go into a Trust Fund that pays for administrative costs, state loans, and extended benefits. States collect employer taxes too; these fund the first 26 weeks of unemployment benefits. During long periods of economic downturn, the federal government has two ways to help states with the highest rates of unemployment: the extended unemployment program and emergency unemployment compensation. The former is funded by the Unemployment Trust Fund. The latter is funded by the US Treasury; therefore, extending it requires Congressional approval.

New Data: Federal, State, and Local Percentages of School District Revenue

We've added percentage of revenue from federal, state, and local sources to our school district data.

Data Update: Average Teacher Salary

Average Teacher Salary is now current through the school year ending in 2010.

New Data: School Districts

We've made 13 school district-level datasets available for viewing and downloading.

NPP Launches Updated Federal Priorities Database

Back in June, NPP soft-launched a new version of our Federal Priorities Database.  After incorporating some feedback, we’re ready for a wider audience.The Federal Priorities Database sits on top of information we’ve collected from various government agencies.  It provides a single interface for seeing everything from state emissions to average ...

England: You're Doing it Wrong — Lessons from London for the Super Committee

England certainly seems like a long ways away my friends, both in terms of miles (or kilometers) and humor. And perhaps that’s a good thing considering the onerous prison sentences doled out as a result of the recent London riots. But as many of you on our Facebook page have ...

White House Holds State Calls About Budget Deal

The White House Office of Public Engagement has scheduled a series of ten state calls (see list and specific invitation below). Note there are two calls today (Wednesday) for folks in California and Colorado and the rest through the end of this week. You are welcome to forward this invitation ...

Data Story: Food Stamps and Unemployment

This is the first our data stories, short pieces to spotlight the role of the Federal Priorities Database in understanding the relationship between social indicators and federal spending programs. This time, we're featuring food stamp participation and unemployment rates.

How Safe Are You? What Almost $8 Trillion in National Security Spending Bought You

NOTE: This article originally appeared on killing of Osama Bin Laden did not put cuts in national security spending on the table, but the debt-ceiling debate finally did. And mild as those projected cuts might have been, last week newly minted Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta was already digging ...

Mainers Want Their Federal Income Taxes Spent on Education, Health Care

In the midst of Congressional debates about debt, budget cuts, and tax increases, a “penny poll” was held in every Maine county asking participants, “How would you like your federal tax dollars spent?” Mainers Larry Dansinger and Lisa Savage were among the leading coordinators of this effort.Education, health care, and ...