Month: April 2018

In approving the $69 billion merger of CVS and Aetna, the state Department of Financial Services attached a noteworthy condition: The two companies must forward $40 million to the state of New York. It was the second time this year that the Cuomo administration has leveraged its regulatory authority over a health insurance company to extract a large sum of cash. Read More

"It's been a blown opportunity basically," McMahon said. He also had concerns about $850 million the state put aside to settle a dispute with the federal government over Medicaid payouts, and suggested using more of the money for core infrastructure costs to hold down growing debt costs. McMahon was particularly troubled by the use of settlement funds to cover annual operating costs, saying, "That's not something they should do under any circumstances. ... The question is whether they will do it again next year." Read More

The research director of the Empire Center for Public Policy, E.J. McMahon, argued state lawmakers should give themselves a stronger voice in how the state decides to award such incentive packages. "They should not be giving (the governor) the discretion to do things like this, but they long have," McMahon said. "This is a giveaway to one of the world's most successful companies." Read More

As E.J. McMahon of the Empire Center for Public Policy noted last week, the proposed Amazon subsidies will go a long way toward indemnifying the company for the costs of the featherbedding construction work rules sacred in New York but barely existent elsewhere, and which almost certainly will govern construction of the Queens half of HQ2. Read More

The latest too-good-to-be-true argument for single-payer comes from Albany City Treasurer Darius Shahinfar, who claims that a government-funded statewide health plan would dramatically reduce property taxes. In reality, the savings for local taxpayers, if any, would likely be a fraction of what Shahinfar estimates. And they would come at the cost of the largest increase in state taxes that New York has ever seen, not to mention wholesale disruption of the entire health-care system. Read More

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About

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.