The bursting of the stock market bubble in 2000 triggered an explosion in taxpayer-funded contributions to New York City's pension funds. But a new report from Comptroller John Liu shows that roughly half of the pension cost run-up in the last decade... Read More
Today's Buffalo News reports that Gov. Cuomo is signaling a willingness to water down his property tax cap proposal. Most alarmingly, the News says Cuomo "privately told lawmakers this week that the list of expenses exempt from any limit probably will... Read More
School districts outside New York City could issue bonds to finance up more than $1 billion in teacher pension contributions over the next two years under a bill promoted by the statewide teachers' union, the Wall Street Journal reports today. Read More
The Citizens Budget Commission's Charles Brecher presented a report this morning on "Benchmarking Efficiency for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's Services." Brecher and his staff compared the MTA's operating efficiency across subways, buses... Read More
Bob Scardamalia of RLS Demographics, Inc., longtime state demographic guru and current data consultant to the Empire Center, has issued a useful summary of the recently released U.S. Census numbers for for New York. Read More
That's the question the New York Times asks today in its online "Room for Debate" series. I'm up there with a contribution (answer: "maybe"). Harvard's Jack Donahue puts the right answer most succinctly: Some things government should do itself. Read More
Among the several hundred "teachers, public workers, renters, health care advocates and college students" who clogged the State Capitol in a last-ditch budget protest yesterday was Maria Pacheco, a Spanish teacher in Rotterdam-Mohonasen schools, who complained that cuts in state education aid will force her Albany area district to lay off 44 teachers. Read More
In a major victory for taxpayers, New York State's highest court has ruled unanimously that Buffalo teachers are not entitled to catch-up longevity pay step increases for the 38 months when their wages were frozen by the Buffalo Fiscal Stability Authority. Read More
Nassau County's Interim Finance Authority (NIFA) has imposed a wage freeze on county employees. The freeze, which will save at least $10 million this year, "is not only necessary but also a reasonable response to the county's fiscal distress," the authority said. Read More
The just-released official 2010 Census data for New York State indicate New York City is growing more slowly and Buffalo is shrinking even faster than had been suggested by previous estimates. Read More
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