Medicaid audit misses big picture by Bill Hammond |  | NY Torch

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State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli accentuates the negative in a new audit of the state’s Medicaid managed care program, faulting two participating insurers for “wasting millions of state Medicaid dollars.” But he omits two important pieces of context. [Read_more]

NY health insurance costs surge by Bill Hammond |  | NY Torch

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New York emerged as the second-costliest state for employer-sponsored health insurance after its premiums rose at more than three times the national rate in 2015. [Read_more]

Has START-UP NY peaked? by Kenneth Girardin |  | NY Torch

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START-UP NY, New York’s signature economic development program, made headlines for creating just 408 jobs in its first two years of operations. However, bigger disappointments may lie ahead. [Read_more]

Another bad year for pension funds by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Torch

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Yesterday marked the end of a second straight sub-par fiscal year for most of the nation's state and local public pension funds, including all five New York City funds and the New York State Teachers' Retirement System (NYSTRS). [Read_more]

Pols aim for design-build by Kenneth Girardin |  | NY Torch

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Some of New York State’s major transportation infrastructure projects are now benefiting from expanded use of the design-build process—but a costly pro-union rider has been attached to proposed legislation extending design-build authorization to public works financed by New York City, and could set a troubling precedent. [Read_more]

Music, video gamers get $50m subsidy by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Torch

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New York's Legislature couldn't leave town without making it easier for the music and gaming industries to collect up to $50 million a year in tax subsidies, modeled after the state's existing (and outrageous) giveaway to film and TV producers. [Read_more]

Another slow-growth NY jobs report by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Torch

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Private sector employment in New York State grew at barely half the U.S. average rate during the 12 months ending in May, according to the latest monthly jobs report from the state Labor Department. [Read_more]

Albany’s cancer deal misses mark by Bill Hammond |  | NY Torch

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Governor Cuomo’s deal with legislative leaders on expanded access to breast cancer screening falls squarely within three unfortunate Albany traditions: It micromanages the health-care industry in ways that add red tape and drive up costs. It singles out a high-profile disease for special treatment. And it accomplishes less than what’s promised by the press release. [Read_more]

NY economy stagnated at end of 2015 by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Torch

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Zero.

That was the seasonally adjusted annual rate of growth in New York State's economic output during the fourth quarter of 2015, according to preliminary Gross Domestic Product (GDP) data released today. [Read_more]