Tax cap sausage still in grinder? by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Torch

Screen Shot 2015-06-23 at 3.07.40 PM
Based on initial descriptions, the delayed end-of-session "big ugly" package deal announced Tuesday afternoon by Governor Andrew Cuomo and legislative leaders is simply confounding on the subject of property taxes.

Although Cuomo and Senate Republicans both said they wanted to make the state's 2 percent property tax cap permanent, the cap apparently will be extended only temporarily. [Read_more]

NY job growth still trails US by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Torch

Screen Shot 2015-06-19 at 8.56.06 AM
Private-sector job growth in New York continued to trail the U.S. average on a year-to-year basis during the 12 months ending in May, according to the monthly state jobs report from the state Labor Department. [Read_more]

A new reward for school failure? by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Torch

roosevelths
The Yonkers school district will be the first to get a special added state aid handout from a $100 million "Upstate Distressed Schools Fund" announced over the weekend by Governor Andrew Cuomo.

But it's not as if public schools in the City of Gracious Living have been shortchanged. [Read_more]

“Warning”: taxes might not rise by Kenneth Girardin |  | NY Torch

Oh, the humanity!
Don't look now, but given current inflation trends, next year's school property tax cap may be ... zero!

That's the message of a statement released last week by the Educational Conference Board (ECB), a coalition of groups representing public school administrators, school boards and—last but hardly least—the New York State United Teachers (NYSUT) labor union.

The ECB's "warning" was meant as an inside-the-Albany-bubble scare tactic, but for most New Yorkers, it's good news: further confirmation that the tax cap is working exactly as intended. [Read_more]

NY economy grew faster in 2014 by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Torch

Screen Shot 2015-06-10 at 10.24.26 AM
On the surface, today's newly released state Gross Domestic Product (GDP) numbers for 2014 amount to an unalloyed good-news story for New York State. Preliminary data from the federal Bureau of Economic Analysis show the state's real GDP grew slightly faster than the national average in 2014, rebounding from a weak 2013.

However, a closer look at the data reveals stagnation last year in New York's manufacturing sector, offset by a heavy reliance on finance and other industries located mainly in New York City.
However, the new data also reflect a continuing decline in New York's manufacturing sector, offset by a heavy reliance on finance and other sectors located mainly in New York City. [Read_more]

EPA drills under anti-frackers by Kenneth Girardin |  | NY Torch

Screen Shot 2014-09-04 at 9.43.51 AM
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has just eliminated a substantial "scientific uncertainty" cited in support of New York State's ban on hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, of deep-underground natural gas deposits. [Read_more]

NY inching up towards $20k per pupil by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Torch

classroom
Spending by New York State's public schools averaged $19,818 per pupil in 2012-13 — once again topping the nation — according to new data released today by the U.S. Census Bureau.

The gap between school spending in New York and the U.S. average continued to get wider in 2012-13—reaching 85 percent, up from 63 percent in 2005-06. [Read_more]

Senate moves ANTI-mandate relief by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Torch

new-york-state-senate
The Republican-controlled state Senate Civil Service and Pension Committee today approved a bill (S.3320) that would lock-in tens of billions of dollars in unfunded healthcare liabilities for state and local government retirees. [Read_more]

Hustle up! by Tim Hoefer |  | NY Torch

Screen Shot 2015-04-29 at 4.42.09 PM
If you’ve spent any time at a little league baseball or soccer game, or any children's sporting event, you know the cry of "hustle up" means move faster. It’s a way adults try to keep the game moving—and remind the players of what they ought to be doing. [Read_more]

Large majority wants to keep the cap by Kenneth Girardin |  | NY Torch

Screen Shot 2015-05-26 at 2.29.40 PM
Almost three-fourths of New Yorkers agree that the property tax cap "has accomplished what was intended" and "should be continued," according to a Siena Research Institute poll released this morning. But support climbs even higher when respondents in New York City—which was not affected by the property tax cap law—are excluded. [Read_more]