Connecticut State Agencies and Academics Pledge to Partner to Further the Agenda
(NEW HAVEN, CT) – Governor Ned Lamont today announced that senior members of his administration – including Chief of Staff Jonathan Dach, Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Commissioner Katie Dykes, and Office of Early Childhood Commissioner Beth Bye – and Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro met yesterday with U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen at Yale University’s Tobin Center for Economic Policy in New Haven to discuss how President Joe Biden’s “Investing in America” agenda is expanding economic opportunity and boosting productive capacity in Connecticut.
Secretary Yellen’s visit is part of the Biden administration’s “Investing in America” tour that is putting a spotlight on the historic investments from the Inflation Reduction Act, the CHIPS and Science Act, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, and the American Rescue Plan Act, and how those investments are building a clean energy economy, rebuilding crumbling infrastructure, strengthening supply chains, spurring manufacturing, and creating good-paying jobs across the United States. According to the U.S. Treasury Department, states play a critical role in implementing these new investments and research universities are integral to deploying skills and talent in support of essential public policy goals.
To further these efforts, the Lamont administration and the Tobin Center announced a series of new steps that respond to Secretary Yellen’s call for states to implement inclusive and green policies and for academic economists to deploy their skills in support of state efforts.
“Here in Connecticut, we are fortunate to have leading academic researchers like those at Yale’s Tobin Center who we can partner with to ensure that the policies we are implementing are efficient, methodical, and produce the best results for the residents of our state,” Governor Lamont said. “I appreciate their willingness to partner with us, and academics at the state’s other great universities, on these efforts.”
“Secretary Yellen’s visit marks a time when Yale is making historic investments in multidisciplinary social science research,” Yale President Peter Salovey said. “I am grateful to Secretary Yellen for providing thoughtful perspectives regarding the federal administration’s economic priorities in the context of the Yale Tobin Center’s research and policy work. By convening leaders such as Secretary Yellen and working collaboratively with faculty members across the university, the Tobin Center is helping to set the national agenda and informing domestic public policy through evidence-based research.”
“Providing residents with access to high-quality childcare and early childhood education opportunities is critical to unlocking the potential of today’s workforce, as it allows parents to enter the workplace and have the peace of mind that their kids are being well cared for – and it’s also critical to the development of tomorrow’s workforce as it sets our kids up for success in school, work and life,” New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker said. “This first-of-its-kind study will help inform and empower both policymakers and parents with evidenced-based findings that help advance the priorities of childcare access, workforce participation, and workforce development in New Haven and beyond.”
The partnerships the Lamont administration and the Tobin Center announced include:
- The State of Connecticut, New Haven Public Schools, and the Tobin Center will produce a first-of-kind study on the connection between childcare access and parental workforce participation. This will be part of a broader, multi-generational, multi-jurisdictional study to provide causal evidence on how access to free public pre-K affects near-term and long-term outcomes for kids and their parents. The research will link the results of 20 years of school choice assignment lotteries data with state data on educational and labor market outcomes for parents and kids. It will also include a survey tracking how parents’ careers have evolved since their child’s participation in the choice lottery. Often called for in policy and research circles, but hard to accomplish given complexities of long-term research, the results will provide comprehensive evidence on the costs and benefits of public pre-K programming. In addition, New Haven Public Schools, with the support of Tobin Center faculty, has launched NHPS Explorer, a platform that parents can use to learn more about schools.
- Connecticut’s Medicaid program and the Tobin center are forming a new public-private partnership to identify long-run sources of cost-growth, evaluate best-practices, and optimize solutions for Connecticut residents. Together, they will create a rapid-cycle learning unit within the Medicaid program, using cutting-edge techniques and approaches to continually improve recipient outcomes and the administration of Medicaid. Faculty will engage and support state Medicaid programs and leaders’ current efforts including using administrative data and resources to accomplish key program priorities like streamlined enrollment and renewal; investigating how Medicaid interacts with other state programs (e.g., education, nutrition assistance, and workforce programs); and more efficiently deploying resources in ways that improve service and save the state money.
- Tobin Center and Yale economists announce a new initiative to further Connecticut’s ambitious efforts to reduce the state’s greenhouse gas emissions. Although the federal government has recently made a generational investment to reduce emissions, the effectiveness of that investment now depends on successful implementation by states. Connecticut, like all states, faces complex analytical challenges around accomplishing these tasks and the preparation of our electric grid for new demands the federal government is catalyzing. The Tobin Center’s technical experts will help the state optimize its eclectic grid effectively, equitably, and affordably.
- Connecticut’s Chief Data Officer will collaborate with the Tobin Center to advance and support its nationally recognized data strategy to develop effective partnerships with researchers and higher education. The Tobin Center will help the state assess practices from peer states for practical lessons and identify actionable projects where data efforts can deliver near-term value. Tobin Center will also support the state’s efforts to engage with Connecticut’s higher education institutions to identify ways that state agencies can leverage universities’ substantial research and analytic capacities.