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Week in Review: The Floodgates are Flung Open

January 26, 2024

The floodgates of school choice have been flung wide open.

Today, tens of millions of families are free to choose an education that truly meets their child’s unique needs. This National School Choice Week, we’re celebrating expanded opportunities for countless children in the 10 states where Goldwater has enacted universal school choice—and we’re pledging not to stop until that number hits 50.

That means challenging the left’s many lies about school choice. Just this week, we released a brand-new reportobliterating the progressive narrative by showing that Arizona’s universal Empowerment Scholarship Account (ESA) program has made private education affordable to all families.

And it means ensuring parents can find out what their child will learn before making an enrollment decision. To that end, we’ve already passed our landmark Academic Transparency Act in Florida and West Virginia, with more states on the horizon.

Why does this all matter? “Sadly, countless public schools have abandoned their historic mission as training grounds of American citizenship,” Goldwater’s Tim Minella writes. But “school choice enables parents to immediately place their children in schools that embrace the historic mission of K-12 education: to help students become intelligent and responsible citizens.”

We’re winning the fight for America’s future. And we’re not done yet. Not even close.

Read our new report on ESAs in Arizona here.

Goldwater Sues Phoenix Over Yet Another Burdensome Business Mandate

They just don’t learn. Just months after Goldwater defeated Phoenix’s last attempt to force an illegal “prevailing wage” mandate on businesses, the city government is trying again with yet another illegal mandate that restricts qualified businesses from competing for public-works projects while hurting small businesses, minorities, younger workers, and all taxpayers. This week, on behalf of dozens of Arizona businesses, Goldwater sued the city to stop it.

The new mandate imposes a host of requirements that construction contractors competing for city projects must follow—like providing employees with wages based on complicated formulas produced by the federal government and keeping painstaking records—or else risk heavy fines and other penalties. The ordinance would cause businesses and their employees to miss out on opportunities, while forcing taxpayers to pay more and wait longer for public-works projects to get done. “In addition to violating Arizona’s clear prohibition on municipal prevailing wage mandates, it’s unconstitutional — it denies businesses and entrepreneurs due process of law by giving an unelected bureaucrat, the city engineer, virtually unlimited power to investigate and punish businesses for alleged violations,” Goldwater Staff Attorney John Thorpe writes in the Arizona Republic.

The Goldwater Institute will always stand up for economic liberty wherever government officials threaten it with restrictive mandates like this one.

Read more here.

Nearly 10,000 Arizonans Free to Work—Thanks to Goldwater

The numbers just keep on growing. Nearly 10,000 Arizonans—and counting—have reaped the rewards of the Goldwater Institute-led universal recognition of occupational licenses law, the latest update shows. And countless more are reaping the benefits nationally.

About one in four jobs nationwide requires an occupational license—a government permission slip to work in fields ranging from floristry to psychology to cosmetology. Those licenses are costly and take significant time to obtain, and when a worker moves to a new state, they often must go through the entire process again. But Goldwater’s universal recognition reform streamlines occupational licensing by allowing skilled workers to use their out-of-state experience to quickly obtain a license to work in their new state.

Goldwater passed this law in Arizona in 2019, launching a nationwide movement—and a domino effect. Since 2019, Goldwater has passed universal recognition in more than half the states in the country, freeing countless workers to pursue their American Dream. And these success stories don’t just represent the successful implementation of a transformative idea. They represent the families, careers, and communities that benefit when government steps out of the way of Americans who are skilled, ready, and willing to work.

Read more here.



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