A ‘windfall’ tug-of-war by Bill Hammond | NY Torch

Existing state regulations, along with competitive pressures, assure that health insurers will share much if not all of the benefit of federal tax cuts with their policyholders. Rather than trying to grab the money or dictate how it's spent, lawmakers should let market forces do their work.

Albany matchup: Medicaid vs. schools by Bill Hammond | NY Torch

With the state facing its grimmest budget outlook in years, the legislative session shows signs of becoming a tug-of-war between public schools and health care—the two biggest recipients of state spending and, not coincidentally, the two heaviest-hitting lobbying forces Albany.

The Janus Stakes by Ken Girardin | Reports

This report provides an overview of the current landscape of union representation, finances, lobbying and political activity in New York State. It concludes with recommendations designed to strengthen the rights of government workers and the oversight of union nances that are ultimately derived from taxpayer-funded salaries.

Indulging the mandate habit by Bill Hammond | NY Torch

The makers of the anti-addiction drug Vivitrol – whose controversial nationwide lobbying campaign was spotlighted by the New York Times last week – appear to be getting results in Albany.

Of politics and breast cancer by Bill Hammond | NY Torch

State legislators have taken their mania for insurance mandates to a new extreme: They’ve passed a bill that arguably accomplishes nothing other than covering unnecessary mammograms.

Senate Spends On Office Furniture Press Releases

The New York State Senate spent almost $2 million on “office furniture” during the six-month period ending March 31, according to the most recent legislative expenditure reports now searchable on SeeThroughNY, the Empire Center’s transparency website.

Meanwhile, the New York State Assembly paid more than $900,000 for “printing equipment” for its taxpayer-funded print shop in which it, like the State Senate, produces campaign-style mail pieces. Each house’s multi-million dollar operation pays for the design, paper, printing and postage with taxpayer funds.
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