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Rule filed under Independent Business | Written by ILSR Admin | No Comments | Updated on Feb 25, 2015

Investment Cooperatives

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://ilsr.org/rule/community-ownership-commercial-spaces/investment-cooperatives/

In the vacuum left by traditional economic development and Wall Street’s approach to finance, investment cooperatives allow communities to put their capital to work in their local economy, catalyze the creation of new jobs, re-imagine their neighborhoods, and earn a return on their investment. Continue reading

Rule filed under Independent Business | Written by ILSR Admin | No Comments | Updated on Feb 24, 2015

Community Ownership of Commercial Spaces

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://ilsr.org/rule/community-ownership-commercial-spaces/

Community ownership of commercial spaces offers benefits that include new jobs in the neighborhood, strong incentives for people to shop locally, local sources for key goods, closer ties with neighbors, and in some cases, a return on investment. Continue reading

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Article filed under Broadband | Written by Lisa Gonzalez | No Comments | Updated on Feb 15, 2015

Want FTTH? Move to North Dakota, Reports USDA

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/want-ftth-move-north-dakota-reports-usda

A recent USDA report reveals that fossil fuels are not the only thing booming in North Dakota. The state ranked 47 for population is ranked number 1 as having the highest percentage of people with access to FTTH.  According to a Telecompetitor article, their status can be attributed to an abundance of rural cooperatives and… Continue reading

titanic iceberg - flickr Jimmy
Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Feb 6, 2015

Are We Sunk? The Electric Utility’s Titanic Problem

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://ilsr.org/electric-utility-titanic-problem/

In my recent report on the utility business model of the future, I laid out 5 pillars of a democratic energy system. It’s hard not to notice the contrast between this vision of the future and the 15-year business plan laid out by Xcel Energy in Minnesota, the incumbent monopoly serving about half the state’s… Continue reading

Rule filed under Independent Business | Written by ILSR Admin | No Comments | Updated on Jan 23, 2015

Internet Sales Tax Fairness – Michigan

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://ilsr.org/rule/internet-sales-tax-fairness/internet-sales-tax-fairness-michigan/

In January 2015, Michigan passed legislation that will require out-of-state sellers to collect state sales taxes if they use in-state sales affiliates or otherwise have a nexus to the state, and if 1) they generate more than $10,000 in annual in-state sales via those affiliates, and 2) they generate more than $50,000 in annual sales to Michigan residents. The law received bipartisan support, and was passed by the state’s Republican-controlled legislature, and signed by Republican Gov. Rick Snyder. The law will take effect on October 1, 2015. Continue reading

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Article filed under Broadband | Written by Lisa Gonzalez | No Comments | Updated on Jan 22, 2015

Maine Legislature All About That Broadband in 2015

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/maine-legislature-all-about-broadband-2015

Maine continues to be a hot spot in the drive to improve connectivity as the 2015 state legislative session opens. According to the Bangor Daily News, 35 bills have been introduced that deal with broadband issues. The story also notes that several lawmakers have introduced bills that propose funding from the state. House Republican Norman… Continue reading

luxury tax monopoly - flickr Philip Taylor
Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 1 Comment | Updated on Jan 9, 2015

Electricity’s Un-Natural Monopoly

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://ilsr.org/electricitys-unnatural-monopoly/

The U.S. electricity system is undergoing the biggest change in its 130-year history, undermining the rationale for monopoly ownership and control. Until recently, electricity service was similar to water or roads, where a natural monopoly was most efficient. Only a single, standardized electric grid was needed to connect each building. Technology options were limited to… Continue reading

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Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Dec 2, 2014

Lifting State Limits on Local Power

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://ilsr.org/state-limits-local-power/

In the first half of 2014, distributed local solar power constituted over 25% of new power plant capacity. This impressive growth continues several years where solar power has grown by leaps and bounds, producing power right where it’s needed and juicing up local economies. But many states have limited how much of their electricity can… Continue reading

applause sign - flickr Princess Theater
Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 1 Comment | Updated on Nov 7, 2014

Are Utilities or States the Leaders in Renewable Energy and Efficiency?

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://ilsr.org/utilities-states-leaders-renewable-energy-efficiency/

A June 2014 study by Ceres highlighted the top electric utilities for renewable energy and efficiency. In an article discussing the findings, Utility Dive suggested that there are “wide disparities […] in the extent to which electric utilities currently deliver renewable energy and energy efficiency.” To find the source of these disparities, look no further… Continue reading

Rule filed under Independent Business | Written by ILSR Admin | 1 Comment | Updated on Oct 23, 2014

Pharmacy Ownership Law — North Dakota

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://ilsr.org/rule/pharmacy-ownership-laws/2832-2/

A forward-thinking policy choice, the Pharmacy Ownership Law, gives North Dakotans pharmacy care that outperforms care in other states on every key measure, from cost to access. In North Dakota, prescription drug prices are more affordable than in two-thirds of all states. Pharmacies are more plentiful, with more per capita than in neighboring South Dakota, Minnesota, or nationally, and they’re more broadly distributed; North Dakota’s rural areas are 51 percent more likely to contain a pharmacy than similarly-populated areas of South Dakota. And in general, independent pharmacies provide higher quality care, studies and surveys of customer satisfaction find. Continue reading