Research

New York State spending has outpaced inflation even as tax receipts plummeted since 2001. The state budget is on track to continue growing at twice the inflation rate over next several years—resulting in large projected future budget gaps, and raising the specter of expanded tax hikes." Read More

A tentative contract agreement between Governor George Pataki and New York’s largest union of state government workers would permanently add billions of dollars to New York State and New York City budgets, if it is ratified by union membership and ends up setting a pattern for the state’s other collective bargaining units. Read More

New York state legislative leaders reportedly are still optimistic that they can produce an on-time budget for the first time in two decades. This, says state Comptroller Alan Hevesi, "would be a tremendous achievement." Read More

The push to overhaul New York's public authorities was kicked into higher gear this week by a package of "reform" proposals from state Comptroller Alan Hevesi and Attorney General Eliot Spitzer. Read More

New York State needs to spend $7 billion more to finance a “sound, basic education” for all pupils, according to the group that successfully sued to overturn the state’s education finance system. What kind of tax hike would it take to pay for such a draconian solution? This memo explores the range of possible answers to that question. Read More

Where can a city turn for more cash when it already taxes practically everything that moves? The latest suggestions from New York's Independent Budget Office (IBO) point to gourmet coffee and cosmetic surgery, prompting well-earned snickers all around. Read More

Welfare reform was one of the big successes of the Giuliani years. Unfortunately, the city's welfare rolls are no longer steadily falling. What's more, other forms of public assistance have been steadily rising. Read More

Mayor Bloomberg's planned property-tax rebate for New York City homeowners won't provide the same economic boost as a permanent rate cut for all property taxpayers. But it sweeps $250 million off the budgetary table and away from the grasping hands of the municipal labor unions and City Council. Read More

New York’s public-pension system has become the epicenter of an influence-peddling scandal that has attracted the attention of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the state’s attorney general. Read More

Faced with a $6 billion budget gap, New York state desperately needs to stretch taxpayer dollars and do more with less. One of the prime solutions can be summed up in a single word all too rarely found in Albany's bureaucratic lexicon: competition. Read More

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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.

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