Category: Commentary

Mayor Bloomberg's "draconian" service-cutting contingency plan dominated the headlines when he unveiled his fiscal 2004 city budget proposal last week. But the real news is that the budget has brought the city a big step closer to another massive tax hike, posing a grave new threat to New York's still-shrinking economy. Read More

By any standard, the revenue bill passed by the state Legislature last week was a real blockbuster - raising taxes on a scale that would dwarf anything enacted during the rolling fiscal crisis that punctuated Gov. Mario Cuomo's tenure. Read More

The state Legislature's latest aid package didn't really do New York City many favors. Sure, Mayor Bloomberg got most of the state funding he was looking for--but some of that money is likely to vaporize next year, when the state will almost certainly be broke again. Read More

In an era of steeply progressive taxation, New York state's formulas for aid to local governments inevitably have a Robin Hood effect - redistributing income from the relatively wealthy New York City metropolitan area to relatively poorer regions north of the Bear Mountain Bridge. Read More

Conventional wisdom in public-finance circles for many years encouraged state governments to increase their reliance on personal income taxes. After all, the academic experts would point out, personal income is less volatile than corporate profits and tends to grow faster than retail sales. Read More

If you earn enough to be affected by New York’s state and city income tax hikes but believe you will escape the brunt of the increases — that they will fall most heavily on the ultra-rich — think again. Read More

After a winter and spring filled with budgetary "doomsday" talk in City Hall, New York's latest fiscal crisis has been interrupted by an eerie, eye-of-the-storm calm. In the space of two months, Mayor Bloomberg's demands for union concessions and program cuts gave way to unilateral budget restorations and celebratory photo ops with City Council leaders. Read More

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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.

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