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News Release | Arizona PIRG | Budget

Bill Heard to Improve School District Budget Transparency

Testimony given to Arizona House Committee on Education by Serena Unrein, Arizona PIRG Public Interest Advocate, on House Bill 2421, which increases school district budget transparency.

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News Release | Arizona PIRG | Transportation

President’s Goal: Connecting 80 Percent of Americans with High-Speed Rail

Statement of Arizona PIRG Public Interest Advocate Serena Unrein on President Obama’s remarks on infrastructure in the State of the Union Address.

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News Release | Arizona PIRG | Financial Reform

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on Track

Six months after Wall Street reform legislation creating the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) was signed, a leading coalition released Halfway to the CFPB: An AFR Progress Report on “Standing Up” the New Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

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Report | Arizona PIRG | Financial Reform

Halfway to the CFPB

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Implementation Team staff are making significant progress in their efforts to both build an effective agency and be ready to perform required functions by the transfer date (July 21, 2011).   Based on our analysis of several key metrics, on the date halfway between passage and startup, the CFPB Implementation Team is properly focusing on key goals and outcomes.  Moreover, the high-quality of its early hires will give it the CFPB the ability to significantly broaden and accelerate its activities over the next six months.

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News Release | Arizona PIRG Education Fund | Health Care

Comments on the Rate Review Program before the Arizona Department of Insurance

When consumers consider whether health care reform has been a success, many of them will have a simple test in mind – when they open the envelope that lays out their health insurance rates, will the premium increase be affordable, or will it be unreasonable? Experts know that there are a host of inefficiencies, misaligned incentives, and system failures behind that one number, many of which have little to do with any particular insurer.

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News Release | Arizona PIRG | Budget

Bailout Transparency Improves, But Still Falls Far Short

The administration’s efforts to bring transparency and accountability to the $700 billion bailout squeaks by earning mostly “Cs” on Arizona PIRG'S latest Bailout Report Card.  While the grades are not impressive, they do represent an improvement from the first Bailout Report Card for the previous administration, which earned almost entirely “Fs.”

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News Release | Arizona PIRG | Financial Reform

PRESIDENT PROPOSES NEW CREDIT SAFETY AGENCY FOR CONSUMERS

State and national consumer protection organizations applauded President Obama’s proposal to create a new federal Consumer Financial Protection Agency to ensure the safety, fairness and sustainability of credit. The agency would have broad powers to ensure that credit and payment products do not have predatory or deceptive features that can harm consumers or lock them into unaffordable loans.

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News Release | Arizona PIRG | Transportation

Over 100 Diverse Groups Tell Congress: Spend Smarter on Transportation

A diverse coalition of over 100 major national, state, and local organizations have rallied behind two U.S. Senators' effort to transform transportation policy by increasing use of public transit, passenger rail and non-motorized transportation, and by reducing driving miles.

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News Release | Arizona PIRG Education Fund | Transportation

Study Shows Signs for Caution on Private Roads

A new report released today identifies problems in a national trend toward private toll roads. The study Public Roads, Private Costs: The Facts About Toll Road Privatization and How to Protect the Public examines 15 completed private road projects and 79 others that are proposed or underway.

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News Release | Arizona PIRG | Health Care

New Report Shows How Much Health Insurers Actually Spend on Care

With Americans increasingly concerned about rising health care costs, the Arizona Public Interest Research Group (Arizona PIRG) today released a report finding that health insurers can cut overhead and increase patient care.  The report, More Bang for the Health Care Buck: How an Efficiency Standard for Health Insurers Can Reduce Overhead and Deliver More Patient Care, examines how much health insurers spend on health care benefits, rather than administrative overhead.  It concludes that an efficiency standard requiring insurers to spend 85% of their revenues on patient care is a realistic, achievable standard that will reduce the cost of health care and provide higher-value coverage.

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