Swiss bank UBS has attracted $1.5 billion to its new global infrastructure fund. “John Fraser, chairman and chief executive office of the UBS AG’s funds arm, said … he was encouraged by the demand from long-term institutional investors, including pension funds and sovereign wealth funds,” the
Fraser’s mention of pension funds raises an interesting question. In America, public-sector unions are big beneficiaries of pension funds. The trustees of such pension funds, often elected officials, depend on union support.
Will public pension fund trustees put their funds’ money in infrastructure ventures like the UBS one without assurances that such ventures won’t result in the loss of union jobs, even through attrition, at privately managed infrastructure projects in the United States?
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When motorists in New York top off their gas tanks this Labor Day weekend, they’ll be paying an average of about 45 cents per gallon in state and local fuel taxes—the 5th highest total in the nation, and second highest in the Northeast.
In their budget bills, state Assembly Democrats and Senate Republicans both had the good sense to reject one of the most egregious fiscal-political gimmicks ever to emerge from Governor Andrew Cuomo: a temporary income tax credit that would have reimbursed a portion of Thruway tolls paid by New York State residents and businesses.
So, how is Governor Andrew Cuomo paying for that $100 billion infrastructure "development initiative" that, as he put in his State of the State message yesterday, "would make Governor Rockefeller jealous"?
The answer: for the most part, he actually isn't.
The New York Power Authority (NYPA) could be taking the money-losing state Barge Canal off the back of the Thruway Authority under the fiscal 2017 state budget that will be proposed today by Governor Andrew Cuomo.
Assuming this Buffalo News report is true, it would explain how Cuomo intends to finance his proposal to freeze Thruway tolls for five years even while building the $4.8 billion Tappan Zee Bridge replacement.
The stock market turmoil of the last week is a reminder of why it's risky, verging on foolhardy, for New York's state government to depend as heavily as it does on high-income households and Wall Street investors.
In the current fiscal year, taxes paid by the highest-earning 1 percent of New York taxpayers—including commuters to jobs in the state—are expected to generate 43 percent of personal income tax receipts, which in turn translates into 27 percent of total state taxes.
Governor Andrew Cuomo’s plan for allocating $5.4 billion in windfall funds has survived, almost intact, in the agreed-upon New York State budget for the 2016 fiscal year, which starts April 1.
Consistent with Cuomo’s original vision, the final plan shortchanges basic transportation and municipal infrastructure.
As part of his plan for allocating $5.4 billion in one-shot windfall funds, Governor Cuomo wants to spend $500 million to expand the availability and capacity of broadband Internet access across New York. But given pressing traditional infrastructure needs, should broadband rate a high priority? Do we really need it? The governor's case, on closer inspection, is less than compelling.
Governor Cuomo repeatedly has said that the state’s unprecedented $5.4 billion cash windfall is a “one shot” that should not be spent on recurring expenses such as school aid or agency operations. Yet his proposed budget language might allow him to do just that.