Month: March 2006

From cheese museums to Little Leagues to sororities, Gov. Pataki and state lawmakers have secretly approved nearly half a billion dollars worth of barely scrutinized pork-barrel projects over the past three years, it was revealed yesterday. For the first time, the list of nearly 23,000 projects totaling about $479 million was made public yesterday on a Web site,, by the Empire Center for New York State Policy, the research arm of the Manhattan Institute. Read More

Some of the nation's top health policy experts gathered to share ideas on how to curb health care expenses, improve health care services and expand access to health insurance in New York State. Featured topics included innovative Medicaid reforms in Florida and Kentucky, the Massachusetts health insurance reform plan, the pitfalls of a Canada-style universal health plan, and the potential benefits of expanding consumer health care choices. Read More

Natural disasters and economic crises can often bring out the best in people. But they also have a way of bringing out the worst in politicians as typified by the way some New York state legislators have reacted to the latest series of increases gasoline prices. Read More

Looking ahead to a watershed election year, most New York voters are dissatisfied with the performance of their state government, according to the Empire Center’s statewide voter survey. Large majorities also believe that state leaders are more responsive to special interests, or to their own personal interests, than to the voters’ interests. Read More

Governor George Pataki's final Executive Budget would increase state spending at well over twice the inflation rate while initiating a new round of significant state tax cuts that would not become fully effective until two years after he leaves offic Read More

The good economic news in Gov. Pataki's proposed budget is a fresh round of $2.5 billion in annual state tax cuts that would provide a strong shot in the arm to business investment throughout New York (assuming the cuts are phased in on schedule after Pataki leaves office). Read More