March 18, 2020

AFF Community

Weekly Writers Round-Up: What COVID-19 Means for Pregnancy, Pensions, and Taxes

By: Josh Evans

Each week, we’ll be featuring opinion pieces from the alumni and current participants of AFF’s Writing Fellows Program. A few highlights from the past week are below. Do you dream of having bylines like these? Applications for the summer session are now open!

Pregnant women take note: The prenatal effects of coronavirus may be risky by Beth Bailey (Fall 2018) in the Washington Examiner
Last week, a London baby became the second newborn to test positive for the novel coronavirus. Days previously, the baby’s mother entered the hospital suffering from what she believed to be a case of pneumonia. The mother subsequently tested positive for the coronavirus. After birth, the baby was tested and removed to an isolation room, and its mother was transferred to a hospital for special infections. The prognoses of mother and child are unknown, as are when and how the newborn contracted the illness.

The developing story illustrates the limited knowledge of the effects of COVID-19 for pregnant women and their children. As a pregnant woman, it has fueled my resolve to continue distancing myself socially as the number of coronavirus cases grows around the United States and in my home state of Michigan…

COVID-19’s harsh impact on state pension systems and school districts by Alex Ollivier (Fall 2019) in The Orange County Register
With U.S. stocks just suffering their worst day since the 1987 crash, followed immediately by one of their best single days, some economists are saying buckle-up and worrying that the coronavirus may help send the economy into a recession. The turbulent economic conditions mean many state and local governments may face a reckoning on public pension payments and debts.

Despite more than a decade-long period of sustained economic growth and increased tax revenues, many California cities have still been having difficulties balancing their budgets, in part due to rising pension costs…

Delayed Tax Filing: A Cost Effective Way to Avert Slowdowns by Andrew Wilford (Spring 2017) in RealClearMarkets
As the country continues to grapple with the spread of COVID-19, federal policymakers continue to debate methods of responding to the secondary economic effects of the outbreak. Not all policy responses are created equal, but one smart option that appears to be gaining traction is delaying tax payments and filings.

President Trump announced in a televised address that he would be using emergency authority to defer tax payment deadlines for individuals and businesses impacted by the virus. Details are scarce at the moment, but Treasury Secretary Mnunchin stated that “virtually all Americans other than the super-rich” would be able to take advantage of the opportunity to delay their tax payments…