Open, Open Open: Governments, it’s time!

March 17, 2023

Open Open Open image from Mervyn's campaign ad of the early 1990s
“Open, Open, Open.” A screenshot from the well-known early 1990s Mervyn’s ad campaign. Source: Mervyn’s on YouTube

What do Madam Secretary, Law & Order, Ozark, Downton Abbey, and Chicago Fire have in common? They all got public subsidies. We explain why giving tax breaks to TV shows is no better than giving them to movies subsidies – and they’re just as opaque.

State healthcare agencies are responsible for overseeing state-run and licensed healthcare agencies – and disciplining them when they’ve put patients in danger or violated the law in other ways. But finding those records? Only ONE state made it easy to find and easily download records online. Let’s talk about the other 49.

The 2022 CHIPS and Science Act directs $39 billion for domestic semiconductor production. But will the public learn which companies get the benefit, and what we get in exchange?

There’s this really great accounting rule – we affectionately call it “GASB 77″ – that makes it easier for the public to find out how money they’re giving up to corporate tax breaks. But WHY is so much information missing?

The only thing I love more than transparency is celebrating wins by others on transparency. Let’s talk about how Camden, N.J. residents got subsidized companies to reveal how many Camden residents they’ve hired (so, so few) and how Texas legislators responded to public pressure (and amazing investigatve reporting) for greater transparency around two mysterious corporate welfare programs.

Today’s Lunch & Learn: What Tax Incentives Do to Schools

The American Planning Association’s Public Schools + Communities Division and Good Jobs First are holding a special event today (March 17) at 2 p.m. ET at to discuss the implications of tax incentives on school district funding.

Register here. Get some background here.

🎉Finally, help us celebrate Good Jobs First’s silver anniversary! We’re looking for a person(s) or firm to help us mark our work since 1998. Check out our RFP. 🎉