Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver wants to raise the state's minimum wage by 17 percent, to $8.50 an hour, and link it to inflation, guaranteeing more yearly increases. Read More

Just over two years ago, New York State enacted what then-Gov. David A. Paterson presented to the world as "landmark pension reform." In his 2012-13 budget proposal this week, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo raised the subject of pension reform all over again. Why? Because Paterson's bill was a "landmark" only in the annals of Albany political hyperbole. Read More

'The largest convention center in the nation, period" -- in Queens? Is he kidding? Nope. In his State of the State address Wednesday, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo did, indeed, tout the same sort of white elephant already being chased by states and cities across the country. Read More

Forget all the spin about “reform,” “fairness” and “job creation” emanating from Albany during last week’s lightning-fast special session of the New York state Legislature. The deal ultimately was all about spending. Read More

This week’s hurriedly enacted deal between Governor Cuomo and the Legislature means state income taxes will now return to the pre-2009 level for over 100,000 New Yorkers who have been subject to a temporary “millionaire tax,” even though they earn much less than $1 million. Read More

On Dec. 6, 2011, Gov. Cuomo and legislative leaders announced a deal to extend New York's biggest income tax increase in 50 years, targeting earners of $1 million and more for what will be the third highest income tax rate imposed by any major state. Read More


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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.

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