screen-shot-2017-10-31-at-11-35-16-am-150x150-6309829Until a few months ago, Governor Cuomo could boast of producing an “on-time budget” every year since taking office. But he also continues to steadily build on another kind of record: for a seventh consecutive year, he has now missed the statutory deadline for issuing the state’s Mid-Year Financial Plan Update.

Under Section 23.4 of the state Finance Law, the financial plan update is due “within thirty days of the close of the quarter to which it shall pertain.” The second quarter ended Sept. 30, and so the latest update was due yesterday, Oct. 30.

To repeat (verbatim) a point made on this blog in prior years:

The purpose of the quarterly reporting requirement is to make the Legislature and the public (including bondholders) aware of key fiscal trends. The mid-year update is particularly important, coming at the start of the internal estimate-gathering process that culminates in the Executive Budget proposal in late January. Unfortunately, Cuomo is getting away with flouting the Finance Law because members of the state Legislature — the only people with legal standing to sue him — simply don’t care enough to make an issue of it.

This year’s numbers are due at a time when, as noted here recently, the governor himself has begun to talk of a deepening “deficit” and of the added threats posed by potential changes to federal Medicaid and healthcare funding.

State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli today issued his own mid-year summary, accompanied by a press release citing the “triple threat of budgetary risks” posed by “projected budget gaps, weaker than expected personal income tax collections and cuts to federal programs.”

Over the past 25 years, governors Mario Cuomo, George Pataki, Eliot Spitzer and David Paterson generally issued their mid-year reports on schedule or within a day or two of the Oct. 30 deadline. The current governor’s earliest mid-year update was issued two years ago, on Nov. 6. The latest was issued in 2012, nearly a full month later, on Nov. 29. Last year, the mid-year report was issued on Nov. 14, which was also the date on which Cuomo issued his first such report, in 2011.

Coming up within the next two weeks are a couple more oft-ignored deadlines, both set forth in Section 23.5 of Finance Law:

  • By Nov. 5, “appropriate personnel” for the governor, comptroller and legislative leaders are required to “separately prepare and make available reports on estimated state receipts and state disbursements for the current and ensuing fiscal years.” Over the past nine years, only DiNapoli has consistently met this deadline.
  • By Nov. 15, representatives of the governor, comptroller and legislative leaders are required to meet publicly “for the purpose of jointly reviewing available financial information to facilitate timely adoption of a budget for the next fiscal year.”

About the Author

E.J. McMahon

Edmund J. McMahon is Empire Center's founder and a senior fellow.

Read more by E.J. McMahon

You may also like

A Look at Covid Learning Loss in NYC

New York City set an example worthy of approbation and emulation by publishing their grade 3-8 test results in math and English language arts. Read More

The state puts a pricey condition on its approval of a heart transplant center

In a provocative flex of executive power, the state Health Department is requiring a hospital system to spend $50 million on health care in Brooklyn and Queens if it wants to open an $8.4 million heart transplant center in Manhattan. Read More

NYISO Predicts Troubled Energy Future

The future is not bright for the Empire State’s electrical power grid, according to the newly released 2021 - 2040 System & Resource Outlook Read More

City union scandal isn’t NY’s first

One of New York City’s largest public-sector unions has been effectively taken over by its national parent after an audit revealed extensive financial mismanagement. It’s the latest example of misconduct made possible under New York’s public-sector collective bargaining rules that force the government to collect hundreds of millions of dollars annually without any safeguards on how the funds are spent.  Read More

NY Pandemic Learning Loss Data Under Wraps 

Nationwide test results revealing major pandemic learning loss have been front page news this month. Read More

The Essential Plan’s accumulated surplus balloons to $8 billion, with no fix in sight

The state's Essential Plan has generated billions in surpluses as the program automatically drew pandemic relief money that it did not need Read More

Firefighter-rights bill torches local control

Two of Albany’s most-vetoed concepts are headed toward Governor Hochul’s desk, this time concealed as a “firefighter bill of rights.”  Read More

Labor Day snapshot: payroll employment in New York still a tale of two states

Over the past three years, the Empire State's recovery has been steady but slow, moving payrolls back to within three percentage points of the 2019 pre-pandemic level Read More

Subscribe

Sign up to receive updates about Empire Center research, news and events in your email.

CONTACT INFORMATION

Empire Center for Public Policy
30 South Pearl St.
Suite 1210
Albany, NY 12207

Phone: 518-434-3100

General Inquiries: Info@EmpireCenter.org

Press Inquiries: Press@EmpireCenter.org

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.

Empire Center Logo Enjoying our work? Sign up for email alerts on our latest news and research.
Together, we can make New York a better place to live and work!