Catalyst for Change… PAR Research Gets Results
Major Roles & Accomplishments, 1950-Present
Many significant governmental reforms have emanated from PAR’s research over the past four decades due largely to PAR’s credibility and objectivity. PAR’s studies have covered a broad spectrum of issues such as:
State Budget Reform
PAR has been the leading proponent of state budget reforms through its research, analysis and legislative testimony. Specific PAR recommendations enacted include:
State & Local Tax Issues
PAR has long recognized that a fair, equitable and broad-based tax system in Louisiana is of paramount importance to the economic vitality of the state. PAR’s research consistently has pointed toward the need to lower the homestead exemption, establish a single collector of local sales taxes, and eliminate taxes that make Louisiana non-competitive.
A significant change recommended by PAR was the establishment of the inventory tax credit program.
In addition, in 1993, PAR’s proposal to balance the budget without new taxes was instrumental in significantly reducing the Governor’s request for taxes.
Public Education Reform
PAR’s research has emphasized K-12 public education and vocational-technical education. Specific PAR recommendations which have been enacted include:
Other Governmental Reforms
Some of the other major reforms resulting from PAR research include:
Citizen & Voter Education
One of PAR’s major accomplishments has been the education of Louisiana citizens on state and local issues. Through its research and publications, speeches to various groups and organizations, and its relationship with the media, PAR has played a major role in helping voters make informed decisions on proposed constitutional amendments, in focusing voters’ and candidates’ attention on the issues, and informing citizens about how the legislative process works and their rights under the public records and open meetings laws. Specific PAR reports include:
Watchdog & Committee Participation
PAR fills an important “watchdog” role by maintaining a vigilant eye on state government operations and the Legislature. Bulletins during legislative sessions highlight good and bad proposed legislation and suggest improvements.
Due to their recognized expertise and objectivity, PAR staff frequently are asked to either chair or serve on a variety of study committees. These committees have dealt with subjects such as public retirement, education, personnel management, reorganization, taxes and state expenditures.
PAR has received numerous awards from the Governmental Research Association (GRA), including: