With its emphasis on reducing dependency and putting people to work, the historic federal welfare reform of 1996 produced spectacular results in New York and across the country. In the past decade, welfare caseloads across the Empire State have dropped 60 percent, and the child poverty rate in the state has decreased 20 percent. Read More
New York State's 2006-07 Executive Budget would kick off a new round of personal income, business and estate tax reductions worth more than $3 billion annually when fully implemented over the next three years. But the cuts are coupled with more than $1 billion in proposed tax and fee increases that would take effect sooner. Read More
New York State has long stood alone in forcing local taxpayers to pay up to half of all Medicaid costs not reimbursed by the federal government. This divided financial responsibility is a key reason why New York easily leads the nation in Medicaid spending. Read More
The state-funded share of Medicaid costs will escalate rapidly over the next few years as Albany assumes responsibility for a greater share of county and New York Medicaid costs, according to projections explained in a new report from the Empire Center for New York State. Read More
In a single recent 12-month period, the state's largest teachers' union spent $150 million on itself, according to a new study by the Foundation for Education Reform & Accountability. FERA understandably found it hard to resist linking the "lavish" spending habits of New York State United Teachers (NYSUT) with the union's perennial demand for more state education spending. Read More
The good economic news in Gov. Pataki's proposed budget is a fresh round of $2.5 billion in annual state tax cuts that would provide a strong shot in the arm to business investment throughout New York (assuming the cuts are phased in on schedule after Pataki leaves office). Read More
Looking ahead to a watershed election year, most New York voters are dissatisfied with the performance of their state government, according to the Empire Center’s statewide voter survey. Large majorities also believe that state leaders are more responsive to special interests, or to their own personal interests, than to the voters’ interests. Read More
Significant changes in state and local tax rates can have significant consequences for New York City's economy. But how do we measure and predict those consequences? To answer that question, the Manhattan Institute's Empire Center for Public Policy has commissioned an updated and upgraded version of the State Tax Analysis Modeling Program (STAMP), developed by the Beacon Hill Institute at Suffolk University in Boston, Mass. Read More
Aside from sympathizing with the plight of New York City residents left to beg rides or trudge to work in frigid temperatures, Upstate New Yorkers probably assumed they didn't have much at stake in last week's transit strike. Read More
Among many other things, this transit strike has been a learning experience for a whole new generation of Yorkers too young to remember issues raised by municipal labor unrest of the 1960s and the fiscal crisis of the 1970s. Read More
A proposal by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to restructure employee pensions reportedly was the issue that this week's illegal strike by Local 100 of the Transport Workers Union. Read More
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