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Report | U.S. Public Interest Research Group and National Taxpayers Union | Budget

Toward Common Ground

To break through the ideological divide that has dominated Washington this past year and offer a pathway to address the nation’s fiscal problems, the National Taxpayers Union and NCPIRG joined together to identify mutually acceptable deficit reduction measures. This report documents our findings.

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News Release | Food

Representative Jeff Flake Introduces REAPS Act

Statement of U.S. PIRG Federal Legislative Office Director Gary Kalman on the introduction of the Reducing the Deficit through Eliminating Agriculture Direct Payment Subsidies Act.

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News Release | U.S. PIRG | Tax

Senator Carl Levin Introduces Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act

Statement of NCPIRG Federal Legislative Office Director Gary Kalman on the introduction of the Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act.

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News Release | Tax

House Committee Approves Cut to Agriculture Subsidies

Statement of U.S. PIRG Public Health Advocate Elizabeth Hitchcock on the House Appropriations Committee’s vote to approve an amendment to the 2012 Agriculture appropriations bill  to limit agriculture subsidies called direct payments to farmers with adjusted gross incomes lower than $250,000.

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Report | U.S. PIRG | Financial Reform

Big Banks, Bigger Fees

Since Congress largely deregulated consumer deposit (checking and savings) accounts beginning in the early 1980s, the PIRGs have tracked bank deposit account fee changes and documented the banks’ long-term strategy to raise fees, invent new fees and make it harder to avoid fees. 

Over the last six months, PIRG staff conducted inquiries at 392 bank branches in 21 states and reviewed bank fees online in 12 others. This report, “Big Banks, Bigger Fees: A National Survey of Bank Fees and Fee Disclosure Policies,” examines the following questions: 

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Save-A-Watt costly, saves little

Duke Energy has proposed a new version of an “energy-efficiency” program. The proposal, called Save-A-Watt, would be wildly expensive but provide little energy savings. Not only would Duke be paid for the cost of the program, but also for 90 percent of the cost of power plants it doesn't have to build.

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News Release | NCPIRG | Consumer Protection

CPSC Data Show Safety Recalls Increased 22% Over Last Year

The number of recalls of toys and children’s products is up 22% over the first half of last year, despite industry promises last year to solve the problems that made 2007 the “year of the recall,” according to an analysis of Consumer Product Safety Commission data by the nation’s leading consumer groups. The groups urged Congress to complete a “strong CPSC Reform Act” before the August recess.

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Teams push ticket scalping

The Carolina Hurricanes and other pro sports franchises are supporting a bill that would let fans buy scalped tickets over the Internet for North Carolina games and shows.

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Progress asks $42M a year to cover energy-saving plan

Progress Energy now awaits regulatory approval of a slate of efficiency programs, all aimed at reducing the amount of energy the utility must produce to meet demand. The programs range from cycling air conditioner use at homes to promoting construction that meets federal Energy Star standards.

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A 'green coal baron'?

Some readers of a recent New York Times Magazine profile of Duke Energy CEO Jim Rogers were no doubt surprised by the piece. If its title, "A Green Coal Baron?" flummoxed some readers, the article's general thrust likely have frustrated others.

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