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The source for actionable policy ideas to spur innovation.

To more aggressively fund battery innovation, the key barrier to affordable and viable electric vehicles, Congress should shift funding earmarked for the EV federal tax credit and instead boost funding for battery R&D at ARPA-E, the Battery Innovation Hub, and the National Labs.
DOD and DOE signed a memorandum of understanding in the summer of 2010 that laid the groundwork for cooperation on the development of an array of clean energy technologies, including advanced batteries. Firming up this collaboration would be a simple way to ensure both departments’ efforts are productive and aligned. So Congress should officially legislate the collaboration between DOD and DOE so...
The Secretary of Energy should create a BatteryShot Initiative that coordinates government battery RD&D efforts and establishes clear metrics for success, such as ARPA-E’s goal of producing a battery with a total system cost of less than $250/kWh and a range of at least 300 miles per charge. The new Initiative should be even more ambitious and set more aggressive goals to make EVs more...
To facilitate increased funding, Congress should create a new office of Globalization Strategies within USTR. Within this new office a special unit to address green mercantilist trade practices should be formed so that the U.S. can bring cases whenever its clean energy interests are being hurt through trade rule violations.
Congress should uniformly apply the performance copyright for sound recordings to all broadcasts. The current system discriminates against non-terrestrial music services by imposing a performance copyright on sound recordings for all non-terrestrial radio broadcasts. Congress should promote technology-neutral policies to ensure a fair and competitive market for all forms of radio. Not only does...
Rather than duplicate existing efforts, the FCC should allow existing avenues of self-regulation and co-regulation to be pursued. Given the rapid rate of change in this industry, where possible, the FCC should apply a light touch and rely on flexible industry codes of conduct, rather than more restrictive government regulations, to govern how information is used. The FCC should not extend its...
Trade negotiators should create a global free trade zone for clean energy products and services, modeled on the Information Technology Agreement (ITA). Clean Technology Agreement (CTA) would reverse this trend and provide two immediate benefits. First, the CTA would expand global clean technology trade. By eliminating tariffs, prices would decline and global demand would increase, leading to...
U.S. statistical agencies are barred by law from sharing important microdata with one another, and this leads to statistics on the U.S. economy that are badly inaccurate. These accuracy problems affect everything from the BEA’s national and state GDP statistics, to the BLS’s and the Census Bureau’s (separate) employment, payroll and establishment statistics, to statistics on the productivity...
Congress should maintain the stability of funding levels with minimal fluctuations from year to year; and Congress should maintain NIH funding at a level commensurate with at least one quarter of one percent (0.25%) of national GDP or higher. Our nation’s baseline policy going forward should be to grow NIH funding at a rate that accounts for inflation, embraces emerging avenues of research that...
Congress should appropriate approximately $65 million a year to NSF for five years to be awarded as prizes to colleges and universities that have dramatically increased the rate at which their freshmen STEM students graduate with STEM degrees and that demonstrably sustained the increase over five years.
The Senate Finance Committee should consider instituting a modest tax on CO2 emissions and to use the revenues to lower the effective corporate tax rate. A $15/ton CO2 tax levied economy-wide would raise $90 billion annually, which could fund not only the expanded incentives here (and an expanded R&D credit), but also from statutory rate reduction. ITIF estimates that if the tax revenues were...
U.S. trade representatives should continue to work to expand the geographic scope of the Information Technology Agreement (ITA), and (as with Russia’s WTO accession) also make it a requirement that new countries entering the WTO must also sign on to the ITA as a condition of entrance into the organization. Only 75 of the 157 WTO member countries participate in the ITA and there are several...
Congress should consider establishing an investment tax credit modeled on the Alternative Simplified R&D Credit (ASC). The ASC provides a credit of 14 percent on R&D expenditures above 50 percent of the average firm expenditures of the last three years. An Investment Tax Credit could provide a credit (at a lower rate) on all capital expenditures made above 75 percent of the base (the base...
USTR too often engages in fighting the last wars—the tariff war and the war to sign trade agreements. It’s not set up, either institutionally or philosophically, to fight the current war—the war against rampant innovation mercantilism fueled by a wide array of non-tariff barriers. To help address this, Congress should authorize and appropriate $5 million to create an Office of Globalization...
Congress should allow states to require out-of-state sellers to collect sales tax, but it should only grant this authority under a framework that ensures that states create and maintain a fair and simple tax system that does not unduly burden out-of-state sellers. States rightly argue that tax laws need to evolve to allow them to require out-of-state sellers without nexus to collect and remit...