Engaging Ideas - 12/1/2017

Every week we curate stories and reports on complex issues. This week: Growing support among millennials for a third political party. Examining what a tax overhaul could mean for affordable housing. A look at how internet fast lanes may impact college costs. The varying perceptions of “value” in health care.


The worst of American politics is on full display right now (Washington Post)
Sexual harassment allegations are consuming Hollywood, corporate America and the U.S. political system. And in doing so, they have revealed the very worst of our partisanship, tribalism and ability to justify just about anything to ourselves.

Millennial poll: Strong majority want a third political party (NBC News)
A strong majority of millennials — 71 percent — say the Republican and Democratic parties do such a poor job of representing the American people that a third major party is needed, according to the results of a new NBC News/GenForward poll.

New space in D.C. intends to play host to bipartisan dialogue (Washington Post)
A new space opened this month on Capitol Hill, just across the street from the Senate and with a rare purpose in our fractious political times.


As Transportation Transforms, Cities Explore Equitable Mobility (Government Technology)
Transit systems should continue to think creatively as they develop new systems to attract and retain riders, according to a new report from the National League of Cities.

The Tax Overhaul Could Mean Falling Home Prices and Less Affordable Housing (WNYC)
While there isn’t a final version yet, it’s clear from the House bill and the outline from the Senate for how it plans to pay for tax cuts (that will still add $1.4 trillion to the deficit over the next 10 years) that the tax overhaul will affect homeowners and renters in the New York City and New Jersey area.

Heartland strong: Road trip through Middle America reveals resilience, pragmatism, and diversity (Christian Science Monitor)
More and more, white Middle America is being repeopled with newcomers of color, bringing a workforce to agricultural jobs, a vibrancy to decaying towns, and a mix of welcome – and suspicion – from older residents.


What Does Citizen Engagement Look Like in Alaska? (Government Technology)
Deputy State Chief Information Officer Jim Steele explains how the state’s unique geography ups the ante when it comes to government-constituent interaction.

What it Takes to Build a Model Police-Community Relationship (Everyday Democracy)
A Conversation with West Palm Beach Chief of Police


School Voucher Programs Leave Parents in the Dark on Disability Rights, Feds Say (Education Week)
States are not doing enough to inform parents about the special education rights they give up when they enroll their children in private schools with publicly funded vouchers.

As national debate over discipline heats up, new study finds discrimination in student suspensions (Chalkbeat)
Black students in Louisiana are suspended for slightly longer than white students after being involved in the same fight, according to new research that adds to a roiling national debate about school discipline.

Companies invest in high schools across state to boost vocational, engineering, other high-demand work (Star Tribune)
A looming labor shortage, along with a growing urgency to address Minnesota's unyielding racial achievement gap, is prompting sweeping changes in the way businesses participate in hands-on learning.

Higher Ed/Workforce

House GOP plans to introduce bill that embraces deregulation of higher education (Think Progress)
These policies, which would be part of the Higher Education Act, last reauthorized in 2008, would get rid of student loan forgiveness programs for public service employees, place caps on borrowing for graduate students, and provide more funding to community colleges for apprenticeships and partnerships with businesses.

Net Neutrality Rollback Concerns Colleges (Inside Higher Education)
The creation of internet fast lanes could come at a high cost to higher education, experts on technology and learning warn.

Scramble for Dual-Credit Certification (Inside Higher Education)
States and institutions are still working out incentives and programs to get dual-credit instructors qualified to meet a change in accreditation standards.

Health Care

Patients, physicians and employers all have a different definition of healthcare value, survey finds (Fierce Healthcare)
Patients, physicians and employers have very different perspectives on what drives value in healthcare, according to a new survey.

On children's health coverage, congressional inaction has brought us to the 'nightmare scenario' (Los Angeles Times)
Child healthcare advocates have been warning, and warning, and warning that Congress’ delay on reauthorizing funds for the Children’s Health Insurance Program places health coverage for as many as 9 million children and pregnant women at risk. But since the funding expired Sept. 30, there has been no action by Congress.

Five health-care fights facing Congress in December (The Hill)
Here are five of the biggest health-care issues Congress will face next month.


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