Blog

Over the past 50 years, New York voters have been presented with 23 general obligation bond issues, including this year’s proposal to borrow $2 billion for school technology and the building of pre-kindergarten classroom space. The outcome of the last 22 votes is evenly split, with 11 proposals passing and 11 failing. Read More

Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s re-election bid is based on the assertion that he has “turned around” New York. However, the economic data pain a more mixed and muted picture of the state's recovery during his tenure. Read More

After holding it for four months, the state Senate has just sent Governor Andrew Cuomo a bill that would add hundreds of millions of dollars to state and local pension costs by allowing public employees to claim pension service credit for time spent in peacetime military duty. Read More

The second of two Election Eve check-in-the-mailbox tax credit gimmicks concocted by state officials in Albany is unfolding this week. Most New York State homeowners outside New York City have received or are about to receive a payment equivalent to roughly 2 percent of their 2014-15 school property taxes—which will average roughly $60 upstate to $150 in downstate suburbs. This is on top of the $350 tax credit sent recently to families that had at least one child under 17 as of 2012. Read More

State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli likes to point out that he oversees one of the nation's best-funded public pension systems. That's true—although, given the competition, it's not nearly as impressive as it may sound. Read More

Is New York State abiding by the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Harris v. Quinn, which said that union fees cannot be collected from government-subsidized daycare providers who are not “full-fledged” public employees? Read More

Local school boards and superintendents “are all over the map on” Proposal 3, the ballot initiative that would let the state borrow $2 billion for distribution to schools that want to buy new computers and build pre-kindergarten classrooms. So says Dr. Merryl H. Tisch—and as chancellor of the New York State Board of Regents, she ought to know. Read More

In a resounding win for Governor Andrew Cuomo and for property owners across New York, a state Supreme Court justice in Albany has dismissed a teachers' union lawsuit that sought to invalidate New York State's property tax cap on constitutional grounds. Read More

The New York City region, including Long Island and the Hudson Valley, accounted for 94 percent of the net new private-sector jobs created in New York State during the 12 month period ending in August, according to the state Labor Department's latest monthly jobs report. On a year-to-year basis, New York's statewide job creation rate of 1.9 percent trailed the national private job creation rate of 2.1 percent. New York matched the (painfully low) 0.1 percent national private job growth rate on a seasonally adjusted monthly basis. Read More

The $300 billion California Public Employees' Retirement System (Calpers), America's largest public pension fund, is eliminating its $4 billion stake hedge funds due to their "complexity, cost, and the lack of ability to scale," the fund's interim chief investment officer has just announced. But the the $180 billion New York State and Local Retirement System (NYSLRS), the nation's second largest public pension fund, is poised to move in the opposite direction. Read More

New York's local governments are falling behind in "meeting their responsibilities to adequately maintain and improve" their physical infrastructure, says a new report from state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli's office. However, as the report points out, the problem isn't just a lack of money. Read More

Public-sector unions are only "superficially" democratic, often leading them to take positions opposed by a substantial number of their members and to take more interest in retirement benefits for older members than in wages and working conditions, according to a new study. Read More