New York state, its local governments and public authorities are committed to spending tens of billions of dollars on public works in the next five to 10 years. But under current law, they’re also committed to wasting billions of taxpayer dollars on public works — to subsidize the above-market compensation of the state’s shrinking but politically influential construction unions. Read More
From the moment of its unveiling at the start of the year, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s “free” college tuition plan seemed to have been hastily reverse-engineered from a campaign slogan — a Bernie Sanders presidential campaign slogan, that is. The governor did nothing to dispel that impression when he invited the Vermont senator to deliver an endorsement of the plan when it was first rolled out at a Queens College rally on Jan. 3. Read More
Amid the smoke and confusion surrounding this week’s on-again, off-again budget dance in Albany, Gov. Cuomo made a point well worth repeating. Noting big federal-policy changes afoot in Washington, Cuomo said Wednesday evening that his top priority was “to make sure we do not overcommit ourselves financially.” That’s an eminently responsible position. Too bad the governor hasn’t followed his own advice. Read More
Imagine that the government, instead of distributing food stamps, wrote checks to grocery stores to reimburse them for giving stuff away. Now imagine that the government gave lots of that money to Zabar’s and Whole Foods while stiffing the bodegas and supermarkets where poor people actually shop. Such a system would be considered a travesty. Yet that, believe it or not, is how the state of New York finances health care for the uninsured. Read More
New York City's move over the next three years to a $15-an-hour minimum wage—the highest ever, after adjusting for inflation—will take the city into uncharted territory, fraught with risks and trade-offs for workers and businesses. Read More
New York State’s tax revenues have fallen more than $1 billion behind projections since the current state budget was adopted eight months ago. When the fiscal year starts April 1, it’ll be staring into the gaping maw of at least a $689 million shortfall. Under the circumstances, a new corporate-tax giveaway is the last thing Albany needs. Read More
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