Local government is a labor-intensive business, and employee compensation is the single biggest element of most municipal budgets. The 2018-19 edition of What They Make, the Empire Center’s annual report on public payrolls, allows New York taxpayers to compare this key element of local government costs around the state.
One of New York’s largest public-sector unions is deliberately trying to shed some dues-paying members. The union in question wants to avoid transparency and accountability for how it spends dues money. And unless state lawmakers or federal regulators act, they’ll succeed.
The newly posted July cash report from the comptroller's office shows that state-funded Medicaid expenditures ran over budget projections by $665 million, or almost 8 percent, through the first four months of the fiscal year. If that pattern continues, the full-year overage would approach $2 billion.
State-regulated health premiums for 2020 are rising faster than the medical inflation rate for the sixth year in a row, yet the officials who signed off on the hikes insist they have saved consumers money – because average premiums are lower than what insurers originally requested. Positive spin notwithstanding, it's increasingly evident that the state's nine-year-old price-control regime, known as "prior approval," is failing as a strategy to keep health costs in check.
The Cuomo administration's quarterly budget update includes a warning for the state's health-care industry: Medicaid cuts could be coming. The report, released Tuesday, says officials are developing a plan to reduce Medicaid spending that could include "across-the-board rate reductions to health care providers and plans."
New York's employer-sponsored health insurance premiums – which were already among the steepest in the mainland United States – rose faster than the national average in 2018, pushing the state's affordability gap to new heights.
New York City's five municipal public pension funds ended their 2019 fiscal year with an aggregate investment gain of 7.24 percent, slightly above their 7 percent assumed rate of return, according to a preliminary estimate by city comptroller's office.
Governor Andrew Cuomo is continuing full steam ahead with policies that will make the state’s already lofty renewable energy targets more expensive and less realistic.
One year after the U.S. Supreme Court said government workers couldn’t be forced to pay union dues, New York’s public-sector unions are concealing their losses by publishing inflated membership figures.
When New York's current state budget was enacted, Governor Andrew Cuomo hailed it as "the broadest and most sweeping" of his tenure, adding that "for the ninth straight year it was both timely and fiscally responsible."
"Timely," yes: budget bills were passed by the Legislature just in time for the April 1 dawn of a new fiscal year.
As for "fiscally responsible"—well, that's more a matter of opinion.
This year's state budget came with a hidden asterisk: In the final throes of his negotiations with legislative leaders, Governor Cuomo quietly postponed a month's worth of Medicaid payments from the last week of March to the first week of April – shifting $1.7 billion in spending from one fiscal year to the next.
At Thursday night's Democratic presidential debate, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand gave a misleading description of the "Medicare for All" proposal that she says she helped to write – implying that it calls for a voluntary buy-in rather than mandatory government coverage.