Gov. Cuomo’s payment of $16 million to keep CBS’s “The Late Show” in New York, when there was zero real threat of it leaving, is the kind of boondoggle Stephen Colbert might mock in his monologue — if he weren’t the one cashing the check. But that gratuitous giveaway of tax dollars, announced last year, turns out to have been the tip of a very big and ugly iceberg. Read More
New York State’s $1 billion capital project slush fund is dispensing borrowed money across the state outside public scrutiny, but two local governments have inadvertently given New Yorkers a glimpse of its inner workings. Read More
Who could be against “smart schools”? The unsurprising answer: not nearly enough New Yorkers to defeat Proposal 3 on yesterday’s statewide ballot, which authorizes $2 billion in state borrowing to finance local school district purchases of computers and other classroom technology; expand schools’ high-speed and wireless Internet capacity; install “high-tech security features”; and build new classrooms for pre-kindergarten programs. Read More
E.J. McMahon, president of the fiscally conservative Empire Center for Public Policy and a Manhattan Institute senior fellow, and others also rightly question whether long-term bonds are appropriate for such upgrades, considering the rapid change of technology. Moreover, while the money would allow for districts to construct and/or make additions to pre-K facilities, it doesn't, of course, provide the ongoing operating costs to staff such noble initiatives. Read More
There are high-priority needs in New York State, not the least of which is repairing roads and bridges, that may be worth borrowing for. Sinking the state even deeper into debt to fund like-to-have items is a mistake. Read More
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