Media Coverage

COMMENTARY: This great economy never reached upstate New York | The Post Star

The economy is not roaring like in many places around the country, and there is an argument to be made that it never fully recovered from the Great Recession in 2008.

E.J. McMahon of the Empire Center backs that up with lots of depressing facts in his paper, “One State, Two Stories.” [Read_more]

Editorial: No Medicaid shell game | The Buffalo News

Many factors are causing Medicaid costs to rise, including a 2017 increase in the minimum wage for health care workers, a cost for which Albany reimburses Medicaid providers. And according to the Empire Center, a fiscally conservative watchdog group, the federal Affordable Care Act pushed Medicaid enrollment up in the state by 31%. Nearly a third of New York residents receive some type of Medicaid benefit. As of 2016, New York’s per-enrollee spending rate on Medicare was just under $10,000, 10th highest among the states, according to the Empire Center. [Read_more]

State Faces Billions In Medicaid Deficit | The Post-Journal

The Empire Center for New York State Policy noted a 1% reduction in most Medicaid payments was announced on New Year’s Eve via the Dec. 31 edition of the New York State Register. The move will save the state about $52 million from January through April, which is the last quarter of the state fiscal year, and another $248 million in the 2020-21 state fiscal year. [Read_more]

Nassau County: The Decade That Was | Glen Cove Record Pilot

In the late 1990s, Nassau County was roiled by a financial crisis that resulted in the takeover of the county’s finances. By 2015, the county seemed to be out off the hole, but problems remained. Writing in The City Journal, E.J. McMahon claimed that ongoing budget deficits proved that “Long Islanders failed to learn from the mistakes of the big city...Instead, Nassau’s republican machine spent the boom years building a suburban version of the profligate... urban-governance model that almost bankrupted New York in the mid-seventies...The finances of Nassau and Suffolk counties...are likely to experience severe stress in any economic downturn over the next few years. Perhaps then, at last, real reform will happen.” [Read_more]

Region rakes in $84.1M in state grants | The Daily Gazette

Ken Girardin, a policy analyst for the fiscally conservative Empire Center, derided the annual event as "Subsidy Day" and said state leaders should instead focus on policy changes to make New York more competitive, including cutting taxes, controlling public employee compensation and streaming government regulations. [Read_more]

Excelsior! New York Will Start 2020 $6 Billion In The Hole | Gothamist

E.J. McMahon, the founder of the Empire Center for Public Policy, a fiscally conservative think tank, said Cuomo has the power to almost unilaterally control Medicaid costs without the legislature’s input. Citing recent research from the think tank, McMahon argued the Cuomo administration created the budget gap by postponing certain Medicaid payments, failing to account for the rising minimum wage, and approving rate hikes for hospitals and nursing programs. [Read_more]

Democrats failed to pass prevailing wage last session. Will it happen this year? | City&State New York

But E.J. McMahon, the research director at the right-leaning Empire Center for Public Policy, counters that “it is frequently misrepresented as representing some sort of minimal ‘living’ wage when it actually is used to impose union work rules, manning ratios and combined wage and benefit levels on all public jobs subject to it.” [Read_more]

EDITORIAL: Time to end Last in, First out for teacher layoffs | Daily Gazette

The district is faced with having to lay off 152 teachers by the end of this month in order to help close a $64.8 million budget deficit, unless another plan is devised by next week. According to an analysis by the Empire Center, the district in 2015-2016 (the last year figures were available) identified 146 teachers as “ineffective.” All or most of those teachers will be retained because of this policy, the Empire Center reports. [Read_more]

EDITORIAL: Gov. Cuomo needs to answer for state of NY budge | The Post Star

Gov. Cuomo needs to addresses Medicaid shortfalls immediately.

The problem is the rising cost of Medicaid, and according to the Empire Center, everything the governor has done to address Medicaid costs over the past few years has made things worse. [Read_more]

Report: Minimum Wage Should Rise | The Post-Journal

An analysis from the Empire Center for New York State Policy noted that the Federal Reserve did issue a cautionary note on its analysis.

“The Fed economists’ blog ends with an appropriate cautionary note,” the Empire Center wrote. “For one thing, even using their method, it’s possible that minimum wage increase reduced the numbers of hours worked, they acknowledge. (Hard hours-worked data at the county and sectoral level are not published by the state Labor Department.) Finally, as the Fed economists point out, ‘longer-term effects, if any, remain to be seen.’ It is certainly conceivable that minimum-wage differentials may affect decisions on firm location, business investment, lease renewal, and the like over a longer time horizon.'” [Read_more]
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