Wisconsin Policy Research Institute
 

Upcoming Events
Interstate Tolling Webinar

Monday, June 26, 2017
10:00-11:00AM  CST

Featuring tolling expert Bob Poole, author of Rebuilding and Modernizing Wisconsin's Interstates with Toll Financing. Click for more information or register for the webinar.

What's New From WPRI
 

Rating YoungStar
 

How Wisconsin's child care quality rating and improvement system measures up.
by Rob Grunewald, Michael Jahr and Matt Snyder
June 2017


 

 

 

Policy Resources for Wisconsin Lawmakers

WPRI has compiled a list of resources for state policy-makers as they debate issues ranging from professional licensure to transportation funding to corrections reform. This handy compilation includes reports, commentaries and videos designed to inform public discourse on issues that will affect Wisconsin residents for years to come.

 

 

 

 

State licensing rules stymie Green Bay barber and UW entrepreneurs

Albert Walker, whose clients include many Packers players, has years of barbering experience but can’t run his own shop.
Watch video of Albert Walker

Ex-offender Albert Walker’s new barber lounge in Green Bay is in jeopardy due to an onerous state licensing law.

 

 

Samuel Haack and James Rohde, UW-Madison students, want to launch an Uber-like, on-demand barbering business to connect clients with barbers outside licensed establishments. But Wisconsin's professional licensing regulations stand in their way.

 

 

Wisconsin Interest: Spring 2017

► Nigel Ashford: What "classical liberal' really means
► Sunny Schubert: Rural resentment laid bare
► Brian Reisinger: State forestland program shifts tax burden
► Mike Nichols: Occupational licensure run amok
► Ike Brannon & Devorah Goldman: State's opioid scourge
► Jan Uebelherr: One addict's slow descent into darkness
► Dan Benson: Is Milwaukee a "donor" city or drain?
► Richard Esenberg: Conservatives: Keep eyes on the prize

 

 

Black Robes & Blue Collars

"Black Robes & Blue Collars," identifies policy changes to Wisconsin's expungement and sentence adjustment laws that could lighten the state's prison load, increase employment opportunities for ex-offenders and help employers find workers. The report includes two policy briefs:

► Problems with Wisconsin’s Expungement Law: How the Law is Used and How to Make It More Equitable and Effective 
► Sentence Adjustment Petitions: Are They Working?
 President's Note: Give judges the information they need

Mike Nichols' testimony on professional licensure

On April 6, 2017, WPRI President Mike Nichols testified in Madison before the Senate Committee on Public Benefits, Licensing & State-Federal Relations. 

Nichols appeared with Krissy Hudack, a salon owner from northern Wisconsin who says the state's licensure system makes it tough for small businesses like hers. Hudack was among the people whom WPRI profiled in its April report "Government's Love for Licensure."

Nichols said in his testimony: "Yes, sometimes the government is needed to safeguard the citizens to whom it belongs. But far too often, according to our authors, there appears to be another motive. Simply put, the authors believe that the steady increase in professional licensing is being driven by both the well-intended but excessive growth of government and a desire to protect incumbents from competition."

Read a transcript of Nichols' presentation

Videos of Unlocking Potential event
On Feb. 14, 2017, WPRI hosted a forum titled "Unlocking Potential" that drew more than 100 participants representing law enforcement, the judiciary, the Legislature, business, community groups and faith leaders. The event at the Wisconsin Center in Milwaukee featured Hope for Prisoners founder and CEO Jon Ponder, Woodson Center President Bob Woodson, representatives of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department and Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch.

The discussion focused on how ex-inmates, with help from one of their own and the same cops who once pursued them, can find a way back to their families and jobs. 

► Watch full video of the event here.
► Watch Jon Ponder's presentation here.
► Watch Bob Woodson's presentation here.
► Watch LVMPD Assistant Sheriff Todd Fasulo's presentation here.
► Watch retired LVMPD Lt. Chris Petko's presentation here.
► Watch Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch's presentation here.
► Watch the Q&A session here.
► Read WPRI's "Unlocking Potential" report, which includes an in-depth profile of Hope for Prisoners, here.

Unlocking Potential
WPRI Special Report highlights strategy for reducing recidivism through investment in work, training and re-entry programs, and encourages the use of social impact bonds.
Wisconsin's historical policy dilemma on corrections
The state can't afford status quo
Re-entry program offers Hope for Prisoners
Alma Center: Breaking the cycle of abuse
MATC program puts offenders on career path

Private industry, prisons team up
Skilled trades program offers a second chance
Social impact bonds: A new way forward

 Watch Mike Nichols on "UpFront with Mike Gousha" discussing the need for corrections reform.

Putting the Squeeze on Consumers:
Real-World Impacts of Wisconsin's

Minimum Markup Law

WPRI takes an in-depth look at how Wisconsin's Depression-era minimum markup law affects consumers and businesses every day.
Mike Nichols discusses the law on Radio 620 WTMJ's "Midday with Charlie Sykes." Listen to it here.
Nichols op-ed: Minimum markup isn't the American way

 

 


 


 


 

 


WPRI Media Mentions


Local Wisconsin leaders react to Trump's visit

Washington Examiner: June 13, 2017
 

NFL barber shop faces same kind of threat hurting patients
Townhall.com: June 9, 2017
 

Study finds Wisconsin poverty rate reached new low in 2015
Wisconsin Watchdog: June 8, 2017

 

Federal grants are the key to restraining bureaucracy

Washington Examiner: May 11, 2017

 

Bills meant to deregulate cosmetologists and barbers earn praise, raise concerns

WSAW-TV: May 3, 2017


Proposal would eliminate Wisconsin license for hair stylists
 
WTMJ-TV: April 17, 2017

 

Poole: Wisconsin should act now on interstate tolling

Journal Sentinel: April 17, 2017

 

A new approach for occupational licensing in Wisconsin

Sheboygan Press: April 7, 2017

 

Can Milwaukee be considered a 'donor' city?

Sheboygan Press: March 31, 2017


Federal grant funding obscures how government is funded, diffuses accountability
Sunshine Week website: March 14, 2017

 

Nichols, Brannon: Help kids succeed before they get to college

Journal Sentinel: March 5, 2017


Hanson: EITC expansion will help Wisconsin's low- and middle-income workers

Journal Sentinel: February 23, 2017
 

Nichols: Rebuilding lives and the economy

Journal Sentinel: February 12, 2017

 

How a law designed to promote fairness is hiking gas prices in Wisconsin

The Daily Signal: February 9, 2017

 

Federalism is a watchword in new year

Rhinelander Daily News: February 2, 2017

 

Republicans urge Congress to cut back federal mandates

Minneapolis Star Tribune: January 24, 2017

 

New state Assembly committee looking at ways to take more control from federal government

Kenosha News: January 24, 2017

 

Alma Center addresses root causes of domestic violence

Journal Sentinel: December 18, 2016

 

Mike Nichols on corrections reform

"UpFront with Mike Gousha": December 11, 2016

 

Brannon: How to fix America's colleges
Journal Sentinel: November 26, 2016
 

Benson: Governing local is governing best
Journal Sentinel: November 13, 2016

Real Clear Policy: November 15, 2016


Franzen: Wisconsin GOP legislators should govern as true conservatives

Journal Sentinel: November 13, 2016


Experts assess college affordability proposals

Wausau Daily Herald: October 25, 2016


Congressman requests information from HUD regarding audits of St. Croix tribe

Inter-County Leader & Washburn County Register: September 28, 2016


Report suggests reimagined UW campus

Journal Sentinel:  September 29, 2016


Does lack of transparency encourage misuse of funds?

Inter-County Leader & Washburn County Register: September 2016


St. Croix Chippewa tribe officials misuse federal funds, audit shows, while poverty persists

Inter-County Leader & Washburn County Register: September 2016

Woodson: Take steps toward progress: responsibility, introspection
Journal Sentinel: August 21, 2016

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