Elizabeth Stelle

Director of Policy Analysis

Elizabeth Stelle is the Director of Policy Analysis at the Commonwealth Foundation.

Elizabeth has researched and written on government reform, health care, welfare, energy, and government transparency. Her work has been featured in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Patriot-News, Philadelphia Inquirer, and a variety of radio and television programs throughout the commonwealth. Elizabeth is a graduate of Grove City College where she earned a bachelor’s degree in history.

A native of Ohio, Elizabeth makes her home in the Pittsburgh area with her husband and four children. She enjoys swimming, traveling to historic landmarks and exploring the moral foundations of capitalism.

Criminal Justice Reform

Smart on Crime Reforms in 2017-18

  • Elizabeth Stelle, Marc LeBlond
  • December 20, 2018

“If it's failed policy, we should have the courage to leave it and let it go.” This poignant quote from former Senator Stewart Greenleaf encapsulates the essence of recent…

Media

Read More: Smart on Crime Reforms in 2017-18

Healthcare

Affordable Care Act Struggles Continue: Sarah’s Health Care Story

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • December 19, 2018

Sarah is a social service worker from Lawrence County, Pennsylvania, where she and her husband also homeschool their four young children. For four years her family received insurance through Medicaid.

Media

Read More: Affordable Care Act Struggles Continue: Sarah’s Health Care Story

Taxes & Economy

Bureaucrats are Keeping Pennsylvanians Dependent on Food Stamps

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • December 13, 2018

Great things are happening in our economy, including more job opportunities and rising incomes. Yet, Pennsylvania is continuing to see near-record food stamp enrollment. The Census Bureau's newly-released American…

Media

Read More: Bureaucrats are Keeping Pennsylvanians Dependent on Food Stamps

Healthcare

Four Ways Pa. Lawmakers Can Reduce the Cost of Health Care

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • December 6, 2018

Bureaucracy just makes things worse. Case in point: Obamacare. Pennsylvanians have faced soaring health care costs and far fewer options ever since the law was passed.   Thankfully, a…

Media

Read More: Four Ways Pa. Lawmakers Can Reduce the Cost of Health Care

Healthcare

Welfare Program Restarts with No Proof of Poverty Alleviation & No Budget

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • December 3, 2018

After a six-year hiatus, Pennsylvania's General Assistance program is back in operation…without a budget. The Wolf administration's unilateral decision to resurrect a program, without identifying a funding source, is symbolic…

Media

Read More: Welfare Program Restarts with No Proof of Poverty Alleviation & No Budget

Regulation

Turnpike Toll Hikes Highlight Missed Opportunities

  • Elizabeth Stelle, Nathan Benefield
  • November 30, 2018

There are three things Pennsylvanians have learned to count on: death, taxes, and Turnpike toll hikes. On January 6th, the state toll road will increase rates by another 6…

Media

Read More: Turnpike Toll Hikes Highlight Missed Opportunities

State Budget

2017-18 State Budget & Spending Trends

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • November 26, 2018

Over the next month, CF will recount what happened on major issues in the 2017-18 legislative session and what policies lawmakers need to prioritize in the 2019-20 session to make…

Media

Read More: 2017-18 State Budget & Spending Trends

Criminal Justice Reform

One Policy Where Trump and Wolf Agree

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • November 16, 2018

President Trump and Gov. Tom Wolf agree: minimum sentencing laws are counterproductive. Last Wednesday, President Trump announced his support of the FIRST STEP Act. The bill gives federal judges more…

Media

Read More: One Policy Where Trump and Wolf Agree

Regulation

Pennsylvania’s Pension Systems

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • November 6, 2018

In 2017, Pennsylvania passed landmark pension reform that will kick in come January. But our $70 billion plus liability is still growing and so is the municipal pension crisis.

Memo

Read More: Pennsylvania’s Pension Systems

Healthcare

What Do Lower Exchange Premiums Mean?

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • November 2, 2018

For the first time in the history of the Affordable Care Act, exchange premiums are decreasing in Pennsylvania. Insurance Commissioner Altman announced an aggregate average decrease of 2.3 percent…

Media

Read More: What Do Lower Exchange Premiums Mean?

Criminal Justice Reform

Three Bills to Help Vulnerable Pennsylvanians Await Signature

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • October 22, 2018

Last week we celebrated passage of a transformative welfare reform bill, which Governor Wolf vetoed late Friday afternoon. But it wasn't the only good policy that cleared both chambers…

Media

Read More: Three Bills to Help Vulnerable Pennsylvanians Await Signature

Welfare

Welfare Reform is On the Cusp

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • October 16, 2018

Major welfare reform is nearing the governor’s desk. Three bills, two in the Senate and one in House, contain significant improvements to our human service programs. SB 6 protects…

Media

Read More: Welfare Reform is On the Cusp

Criminal Justice Reform

Unlocking Pennsylvanians’ Potential

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • October 11, 2018

Pennsylvania’s poverty rate remains far too high. Employers can’t find workers with technical skills, and the commonwealth continues to lead the northeast in incarcerating our citizens. One organization is…

Media

Read More: Unlocking Pennsylvanians’ Potential

Public Union Democracy

Top 5 Reasons to Support HB 2571

  • Elizabeth Stelle, Jessica Barnett
  • October 9, 2018

HB 2571 is a commonsense reform that benefits public sector workers and aligns Pennsylvania law with the U.S. Supreme Court's Janus v. AFSCME decision. Here are five reasons it must…

Media

Read More: Top 5 Reasons to Support HB 2571

Criminal Justice Reform

Philadelphia Forced to Reform Unjust Confiscation

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • September 21, 2018

Four years ago we told you the story of Markela and Chris Sourovelis, Philadelphians who lost their home when their son committed a minor drug crime thanks to an…

Media

Read More: Philadelphia Forced to Reform Unjust Confiscation

Work Requirements on Tap in Washington and Harrisburg

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • September 7, 2018

At the end of this month, the federal farm bill expires. Its replacement—a monolithic piece of legislation—is the subject of significant controversy over strengthening food stamp work requirements for healthy…

Media

Read More: Work Requirements on Tap in Washington and Harrisburg

Public Union Democracy

Four Teachers Finally Gain Control Over their Paycheck

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • September 4, 2018

Jane Ladley retired from teaching three years ago, but until two weeks ago the teachers union held part of her pay in escrow. Jane was a religious objector to…

Media

Read More: Four Teachers Finally Gain Control Over their Paycheck

State Budget

Refocus on Government Assistance that Transforms Lives for Good

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • August 20, 2018

Six years ago, the Pennsylvania legislature ended the General Assistance program, a monthly cash benefit to disabled adults. In that same bill, Pennsylvania strengthened food stamp work requirements (later rolled…

Media

Read More: Refocus on Government Assistance that Transforms Lives for Good

Criminal Justice Reform

Removing Barriers to Work for Ex-Offenders

  • Elizabeth Stelle
  • August 15, 2018

Pennsylvania has a 3-year recidivism rate of nearly 61 percent. Research shows one of the most critical components of successful re-entry is a job. But for 255…

Memo

Read More: Removing Barriers to Work for Ex-Offenders