Benchmarking New York | Reports

New York State residents pay some of the highest local taxes in the nation. Until now, however, New Yorkers have had no easy way to compare basic fiscal measures for the local governments that account for a large share of the taxes they pay.

EJ McMahon Testimony: Assembly Committee on Real Property Taxation by E.J. McMahon | | Testimony

Economic conditions have obvious implications for the work of this Committee and for the Legislature in general. We are in the midst of a potentially severe and long-lasting global recession. But for New York State, the recession is only part of the problem.

Fueled by the super-heated profits of the securities industry, mixed with gains from a now-popped real estate bubble, the surge in state tax revenues over the past five years was as big as anything New York has experienced during any previous five-year stretch in the last 35 years.

Teachers Go Nuclear by E.J. McMahon | | New York Post

LAST week's state Senate approval of Gov. Paterson's proposed cap on school property taxes seems to have induced a nervous breakdown in the powerful statewide teachers' union.

Cap Those Taxes by E.J. McMahon | | New York Post

Healthy skepticism was warranted back in January, when Gov. Eliot Spitzer first announced he would name a special commission to recommend a cap on school property taxes.

Sure, the governor's rhetoric was tough and right on the mark. And he was embracing an idea he'd rejected during his 2006 gubernatorial run - and choosing his primary opponent, Nassau County Executive Thomas Suozzi to chair the commission, ensuring this would at least be a high-profile effort.

NY School Spending Well Above Inflation in 2008-09 Press Releases

School districts across New York State will increase their per-pupil spending next year by nearly one and a half times the current rate of inflation -- despite falling real estate values and clear signs of an economic slowdown -- according to an analysis issued today by the Empire Center for Public Policy.

Eliot’s Excellent Idea by E.J. McMahon | | New York Post

Gov. Spitzer's second annual State of the State message yesterday featured what may ultimately stand out as his Nixon-goes-to-China moment. Annoying a powerful ally - and embracing a concept he had rejected during the 2006 gubernatorial campaign - Spitzer said he would form a special commission to recommend a "fair and effective cap" on school taxes in New York.