Response to WCVB-TV editorial of June 8, 1998

By David G. Tuerck, PhD
Executive Director, Beacon Hill Institute
Chairman and Professor of Economics
Suffolk University, Boston, Massachusetts

A recent WCVB-TV editorial supported the MassJobs Council's controversial recommendation allowing welfare recipients to count education or job training toward their work requirement – instead of getting their training “on the job” as the law requires.

Governor Cellucci felt this idea was such a bad deal for taxpayers that he fired the entire Council.

Instead of arguing about how government should run the welfare system, it's time to look at a better way to dispense benefits. Massachusetts should eliminate the government middleman and let private charities step in to assist those who need help.



Currently, 28 states offer tax credits to individuals who give to charitable organizations that help the poor. A tax credit permits you and me to reduce our tax bills dollar-for-dollar for what we give, up to some limit.

Charitable tax credits take dollars that would otherwise go through a government bureaucracy and directs them to private charities that are already helping the needy.

Unfortunately, Massachusetts does not encourage taxpayers to give to charities.

At the Beacon Hill Institute at Suffolk University, we believe that Massachusetts should end the fighting over work versus education and adopt what is working in 28 states. Allowing tax credits for giving money directly to those charities that are helping the poor makes sense for everyone.


David G. Tuerck is the executive director of the Beacon Hill Institute at Suffolk University. This response aired on WCVB-TV, Channel 5, Boston on Wednesday, June 24, 1998.

Format revised on 18 August, 2004