How the federal relief bill cheats New York by Bill Hammond |  | NY Daily News

In the predictably messy $2 trillion coronavirus response bill approved by Congress on Friday, one provision stands out as a particular travesty: the nonsensical way it distributes public health funding to the states. [Read_more]

As coronavirus rages, Albany’s health-care taxes are simply inexcusable by Bill Hammond |  | Commentary

#NYCoronavirus: What he had stumbled onto was one of Albany’s dirtiest little secrets — an addiction to taxing health care, which has gotten steadily worse over the past quarter-century.

And now there’s a danger that the coronavirus crisis will become an excuse for state lawmakers to hike the taxes and hit consumers even harder. [Read_more]

Why NY needs to freeze pay now for all government workers by E.J. McMahon |  | New York Post

There’s an obvious place to start in New York: Freeze state and local government employee pay. The combined estimated savings for every level of government could at least be a down payment on the massive reductions that will be necessary in the year ahead — and probably for years to come. [Read_more]

NYS Will Soon Need A Fiscal Ventilator by E.J. McMahon |  | New York Post

#NYCoronaVirus: With any luck, the coronavirus will be a fading memory by summer. But by then, massive (if temporary) damage will already have been done to the state and regional economies. The Empire State and its local governments, including Gotham, will have to confront a fiscal crisis as intense as the current public-health emergency. [Read_more]

The Viral Threat to NY’s Budget by E.J. McMahon |  | New York Post

This week’s stock-market plunge amid mounting fears of a global economic slowdown triggered by the coronavirus couldn’t come at a more crucial time in New York state’s budget-making process. [Read_more]

Virginia Is for Public-Sector Union Lovers by Ken Girardin |  | Wall Street Journal

Virginia Democrats are poised to legalize collective bargaining for government employees. In November Democrats brought Richmond under their total control for the first time in more than a quarter-century. The new legislative majorities seem intent on ignoring the painful lessons of New York state’s half-century experiment with government unions. [Read_more]

High Speed Flail by E.J. McMahon |  | New York Post

In what he calls a “bold agenda” for New York’s future, Gov. Andrew Cuomo has dusted off one of Albany’s creakiest bipartisan infrastructure fantasies: high-speed passenger rail service. [Read_more]

Cuomo stalls on Medicaid by Bill Hammond |  | New York Post

Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s response to the Empire State’s big Medicaid deficit, as laid out in his budget presentation on Tuesday, was a disappointing mix of delay, deflection and delegation. [Read_more]

One State, Two Stories by E.J. McMahon |  | City Journal

From a statewide perspective, New York’s economic performance since the end of the Great Recession hasn’t been especially outstanding, roughly equaling the U.S. averages for growth in private employment and GDP, while slightly trailing the national rate of increase in personal income since early 2009. But a closer look at the numbers reveals a tale of two New Yorks. [Read_more]

Albany’s Self-Inflicted Medicaid Crisis by Bill Hammond |  | City Journal

In 2020, the biggest headache facing Albany will be Medicaid, the state-run health plan that covers more than 6 million lower-income and disabled New Yorkers. As revealed last month, Medicaid is running 16 percent over budget—opening a $4 billion deficit in the state’s current financial plan and contributing disproportionately to a $6.1 billion gap for the fiscal year that begins April 1. [Read_more]

Blame Cuomo for the state budget crisis by Bill Hammond |  | Rochester Beacon

Instead of properly managing Medicaid, the state’s biggest and most important program, Cuomo subverted his own reforms, whitewashed official reports, withheld information from the Legislature and the public, flouted his constitutional duties and, worst of all, secretly delayed $1.7 billion in payments from one fiscal year to the next. [Read_more]

The Board of Regents push a reckless spending spree by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Daily News

New York State is facing its biggest budget deficit since Gov. Cuomo took office at the end of the Great Recession — but you’d never know it from watching or listening to the Board of Regents, the state’s education policy-making body. [Read_more]
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