About the Authors and Acknowledgments

Kyle Sweetland


Kyle Sweetland is a former researcher at the Institute for Justice, where he provided research and analysis on issues central to the Institute’s mission. He is a co-author of IJ’s Food Truck Truth: Why Restaurants—and Cities—Have Nothing to Fear from Mobile Food Businesses, The Price of Taxation by Citation, and License to Work, 2nd ed. His work has appeared in academic journals such as Economic AffairsJournal of Entrepreneurship and Public Policy, and Criminal Justice Policy Review, as well as in Spotlight on Poverty and Opportunity. He holds a bachelor’s in business economics and public policy from Indiana University Southeast and is currently pursuing a master’s in data informatics at Middle East Technical University.

Dick M. Carpenter II, Ph.D.

Senior Director of Strategic Research

Dr. Dick Carpenter is a senior director of strategic research at the Institute for Justice. He works with IJ staff and attorneys to define, implement and manage social science research related to the Institute’s mission. His work has appeared in academic journals such as Economic Development QuarterlyCriminal Justice Policy ReviewEconomic AffairsJournal of Entrepreneurship and Public PolicyThe ForumFordham Urban Law JournalInternational Journal of EthicsEducation and Urban SocietyUrban Studies, and Regulation and Governance. His research results have also been quoted in such newspapers as the New York TimesWashington Post and Wall Street Journal. Carpenter’s research for IJ has resulted in reports including License to Work: A National Study of Burdens from Occupational Licensing, 2nd ed.; The Price of Taxation by Citation: Case Studies of Three Georgia Cities That Rely Heavily on Fines and FeesUpwardly Mobile: Street Vending and the American DreamSeize First, Question Later: The IRS and Civil Forfeiture; and Victimizing the Vulnerable: The Demographics of Eminent Domain Abuse. He is also co-author of the book Bottleneckers: Gaming the Government for Power and Private Profit.


This report may list two authors, but it profited from the contributions of many others, for whom we are grateful. The collection, organization, cleaning, coding, analysis and checking of data benefited from the efforts of Jennifer McDonald, Anthony Ward, Zachary Popovich, Rachel Rozenboom, Jason Tiezzi, Allan Hegedus, Harrison Weeks and Hannah So. Drs. Darwyyn Deyo and David Warren helped run the revised analysis. Lisa Bergstrom, Melissa LoPresti, David Losson, Marianne March, Kim Norberg and Nick Wolf assisted us in our search for people’s stories to highlight in the report. Tony Laudadio and Marshall Bellando provided literature and citation support. Lisa Knepper furnished helpful perspectives on the findings. Scott Bullock, Dana Berliner, Lee McGrath, Meagan Forbes, Jessica Poitras, Bob McNamara and Renée Flaherty provided feedback on the manuscript. Ben Field and Evan Lisull assisted with legal citations and proofing. Finally, Mindy Menjou’s direction and editing and Nathalie Walker’s design produced readable and engaging text.