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Welcome to "Mike's Memo," an update on what's happening in the 48th Legislative District, the State Capitol, and the progress of my legislative priorities. If you haven't done so already, please take a few moments to visit my website at to learn more about issues that may affect you and your family.

Week of March 7, 2016

Rich States, Poor States
A report was recently released comparing state economic competitiveness across the nation. This index analyzes policy choices made throughout the 50 states and how these decisions have impacted economic competitiveness among the states.

The study measures 15 policy variables. Under these variables, Pennsylvania’s economic performance rank was 39 of 50 and 41st in economic outlook. Here’s Pennsylvania’s ranking for each of the 15 variables (#1 = best; #50 = worst):
Top marginal Personal Income Tax rate: #34
Top marginal Corporate Income Tax rate: #49
Personal Income Tax progressivity: #2
Property Tax burden: #29
Sales Tax burden: #12
Remaining tax burden: #44
Estate/inheritance tax: #50
Tax policy changes over the past two years: #47
Debt service as a share of tax revenue: #32
Public employees per 10,000 residents: #5
Quality of state legal system: #39
State minimum wage ($7.25): #1
Average Workers’ Compensation costs: #34
Not a Right to Work state = #50
Tax expenditure limits: #34

States with the best economic outlooks were: Utah (#1), North Dakota, Indiana, North Carolina, Arizona, Idaho, Georgia, Wyoming, South Dakota, and Nevada.

States with economic outlooks worse than Pennsylvania’s (#41) were: Maine, Montana, California, Oregon, New Jersey, Connecticut, Minnesota, Vermont, and New York (#50).

Hope Within Ministries Receives PANO Seal of Excellence
Hope Within Ministries of Londonderry Township, Dauphin County in the 48th Senatorial District, was awarded the Seal of Excellence by the Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organizations (PANO). Following a rigorous application and review process, the Seal designates successful compliance with the Standards for Excellence: An Ethics and Accountability Code for the Nonprofit Sector. Congratulations!

Contact Information
Please feel free to contact me at any time on state-related issues that are of concern to you. I may be reached through my website or my Lebanon or Harrisburg offices.

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