The weekly City and State opens its feature on the minimum wage issue with a portrait of Michelle Dawkins, who rises at 2:30 a.m. to earn $7.25 an hour ferrying wheelchair-bound passengers among the terminals at JFK airport. Assuming she is able to work 40 hours a week without a sick day, Dawkins “will make $15,080 over the course of a year,” the article says. Read More
Public pension funds in New York and across the country are continuing to rely on overly optimistic assumptions about their future investment gains, as detailed in a major New York Times story yesterday. Read More
New York State’s biggest public pension fund underperformed last year, returning 154 basis points less than the 7.5 percent return assumed in its actuarial calculations, which in turn ultimately drive taxpayer-funded pension contributions. Read More
The New York State and Local Retirement System (NYSLRS) closed its most recent fiscal year with a return of just 5.96 percent — well below the 7.5 percent target rate used to discount its long-term liabilities. Read More
The New York Times has agreed to print a correction of this article about the minimum wage issue, which includes inaccurate information implicitly attributed to Empire Center senior fellow Russell Sykes. Read More
A big wheel at Deutsche Bank, chief risk officer and board member Hugo Bänziger, has some portentous thoughts about banking (and therefore, about New York City and State finances) in today's FT. Read More
For years now, the Senate GOP’s approach to economic growth has been to cook up big pot of targeted tax relief, and then fling the whole one-house package onto the agenda for passage so incumbents can campaign on it. Job creation? We’ve got it covered! Read More
A big wheel at Deutsche Bank, chief risk officer and board member Hugo Bänziger, has some portentous thoughts about banking (and therefore, about New York City and State finances) in today’s FT... Read More
A bill pending in the state Senate would weaken a key underpinning of welfare reform -- the Work Experience Program, or WEP. This is a one-house measure for now, and it's sponsored by a member of the democratic minority, to boot. But many of Albany's worst ideas have been born as one-house minority bills, so this one bears watching. Read More
Another sign of the permanent structural change in New York’s state and city tax base: today’s warning by Fitch Ratings that the world’s largest banks (including NY-based Goldman and Chase) will need to raise $566 billion to satisfy new capital requirements to protect against capital shocks. Read More
The Citizens Budget Commission has posted some nifty charts breaking out the difference between New York State and the U.S. averages for different categories of public elementary and secondary school spending. One noteworthy data point: between 1999 and 2009, spending per pupil on employee benefits for instructional staff rose 169 percent in New York... Read More
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