Commentary

On April 2, with New York’s COVID-19 curve still rising ominously, state lawmakers wrapped up a budget almost unchanged from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s pre-pandemic January proposal. With the economy in a coma and revenues crashing, the plan obviously was awash in red ink. Read More

With the coronavirus lockdown continuing to erode tax revenues, Gov. Andrew Cuomo has turned up the volume on his demands for a federal bailout of the New York state budget. In a weekend briefing, the governor repeated his estimate that the Empire State will need help closing a deficit of $10 billion to $15 billion. “I don’t have any funding to do what I normally do,” he said. Read More

In case it wasn’t obvious from the headlines and body count, New York is currently suffering more severely from the coronavirus epidemic than almost anywhere else. Read More

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

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

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 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

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

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

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About

The Empire Center is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit think tank located in Albany, New York. Our mission is to make New York a better place to live and work by promoting public policy reforms grounded in free-market principles, personal responsibility, and the ideals of effective and accountable government.