THE PIONEER BLOG

The Power of Competition at the T

In 2015, right after record-setting snowfall shut down the region’s transit system, Pioneer developed governance and reform proposals to put the MBTA on a stronger fiscal footing. One of our reports concerned The Ride, the regional paratransit system for customers with disabilities, showing that: The Ride’s budget was out of control and procured through contracts […]

Meeting the Housing Needs of an Aging Population

Guest post by Mariella Rutigliano Many Americans struggle to pay for housing — and the reality today is that a significant number of those who will retire over the next decade will struggle financially to stay in their own homes. According to a 2014 report released by the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard […]

Getting the T Back on Track

The reforms that the Massachusetts Legislature advanced at the MBTA just two short years ago are having a tangible impact on the T’s financial viability and operations. In the near term, more remains to be done to close the T’s annual budget gap, including three big items: competitively bidding the T’s bus maintenance and in-person […]

Statement on Governor Baker’s Proposed Healthcare Business Assessment

In January, the Baker Administration introduced a number of healthcare market reform proposals in its fiscal 2018 budget. The public face of these proposals is found in a slide presentation on the website of the Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS). There have also been news stories written about the proposals and certain […]

Join Us Mar. 20: “A Fire You Can’t Put Out”: Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth, Civil Rights, & School Choices

In the aftermath of a contentious electoral season, highlighted by debates about the nature of our democracy and equality of educational opportunity, Pioneer Institute is hosting a forum that celebrates the birthday and legacy of the late Birmingham, Alabama civil rights leader Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth. The event will feature his widow, award-winning historians, and civil […]

Celebrating Presidents’ Day & K-12 U.S. History Instruction

As we celebrate Presidents’ Day, Pioneer Institute is pleased to share video highlights, research, and op-eds that we have produced in recent years marking the importance of key presidents in American history – and the vital importance of their inclusion in K-12 instruction. In recent years, Pioneer has actively promoted rigorous, content-based academic standards that […]

The Clock is Ticking…….

The clock is ticking towards December 30, 2017.  As part of the 2016 public records reform legislation, An Act to Improve Public Records, a special legislative committee was established to “examine the accessibility of information concerning the legislative process of the general court and the expansion of the definition of public records.” The establishment of […]

State Leadership Needed on Healthcare Price Transparency

Governor Baker’s recent healthcare proposals include provisions aimed at improving transparency in healthcare pricing. These policies imply that it is necessary to release more information in order to realize cost savings through healthcare price transparency measures, but current state laws already require the disclosure of price information upon request. Enforcing existing laws and creating incentives […]

Achieving a Sustainable and Transparent Healthcare System

As the Legislative Special Commission on Provider Price Variation wraps up its work (their potential report/recommendations are due in mid-March), PioneerHealth took this opportunity to provide our expertise and vision for moving towards a sustainable and transparent healthcare system. We envision a host of policy recommendations, enhanced enforcement of existing laws, and a statewide education […]

Family Caregiving & the Promise of Technology

Guest post by Ben Margolin When older Americans require around-the-clock care, yet want to remain in their homes, their families often end up as caregivers. There are significant financial barriers to ensuring that older adults adhere to their medication schedule and have access to the right doctors and specialists, all while feeling safe in their […]

Why do Massachusetts municipalities make meeting transparency harder than it has to be?

Executive session is where local governing boards interview police chiefs and school superintendents, negotiate with unions, discuss litigation, talk about misconduct by town employees, and conduct other delicate business that is kept temporarily private for legitimate reasons. Once the purpose of the meeting is resolved, the minutes are supposed to be reviewed by the town […]

Ensuring a secure financial future for older adults

Every day, 10,000 Americans turn age 65. Adults over this age now make up more than 15 percent of the U.S. population, according to the Census Bureau – by 2029, this number will surpass 20 percent. Our 2017 Better Government Competition is focused on ensuring a better future for older Americans – and some of […]

Celebrating School Choice Week: Removing Know-Nothing/Blaine Barriers to School Choice

On Day 5, the final day of National School Choice Week, we’re focusing on the need to overcome the Know-Nothing/Blaine legal obstacles that prevent largely poor and minority students from accessing equal educational opportunities. In nearly 40 states (see yellow states on map), the most severe barriers to school choice are antiquated, nativist constitutional amendments […]

Insurer Using Market Clout to Lower Healthcare Costs for Consumers

There are rumblings among some in the hospital community voicing displeasure with the Group Insurance Commission’s (GIC) new plan to cap payments to providers at 160% the Medicare rate. The GIC says this move will help save the agency $50-100 million annually and meet the state’s cost growth benchmark. Over the years, the GIC has […]

Celebrating School Choice Week: Vocational-Technical Education

On Day 4 of National School Choice Week, we’re shining the spotlight on career-vocational technical education in Massachusetts, which is delivering on the promise of preparing students for both college and career success. Along with charter public schools, no other category of schools in Massachusetts has delivered results as impressive as those at voc-techs. Over […]