Where NY’s school money goes by Bill Hammond |  | NY Torch

It’s commonly perceived that New York’s education funding system directs more money to wealthier, whiter schools than to poorer, less white schools – and that the distribution of state aid reinforces those inequities. Looking at the totality of school spending across the state, however, different patterns emerge. [Read_more]

Senate moves massive mandate by Ken Girardin |  | NY Torch

A Republican-sponsored bill that would impose a massive unfunded state mandate on local governments was unanimously reported out of Senate committee this week. [Read_more]

Medicaid déjà vu by Bill Hammond |  | NY Torch

In a "Groundhog Day"-like replay of tactics from last year, health-care interests are again using an unlikely threat of spending cuts in Washington to demand special treatment in the upcoming state budget.

The question now is whether the governor and the Legislature will play along with the movie for a second time in a row – and whether it will have the same ugly ending.

[Read_more]

Cuomo’s Medicaid merry-go-round by Bill Hammond |  | NY Torch

Governor Cuomo is now backing away from Medicaid spending cuts he pushed less than four weeks ago, his second about-face on health-care funding so far this year. Even more head-spinning is his stated rationale: the supposed threat to federal aid outlined in President Trump's budget proposal this week. [Read_more]

One-house megabucks by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Torch

With the clock ticking toward the April 1 start of the next state fiscal year, Assembly Democrats just laid out their budget preferences—and, as usual, they add up to a massive tax-and-spend fantasy. [Read_more]

Jobs grow further apart in NY by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Torch

Newly revised data from the state Labor Department indicate New York's regional economic performance gap has grown larger in the last year.

On a year-to-year basis, the state gained 103,900 private-sector jobs in January—a growth rate of 1.3 percent at a time when the U.S. as a whole was growing by 2.1 percent, according to the state Labor Department's monthly jobs report. [Read_more]

NY’s “heart attack” recovery by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Torch

As the budget process moves into higher gear, Governor Cuomo's "serious as a heart attack" revenue shortfall has turned into something more like angina—but financial risks are mounting along with projected future budget gaps. [Read_more]

New data point up “prevailing” myth by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Torch

Barely one in five private construction workers in New York State was covered by a union contract last year, according to newly released statistics that call into question a state public works "prevailing wage" mandate that assumes 30 percent union coverage of building trades occupations across New York. [Read_more]

Pricing an IVF mandate by Bill Hammond |  | NY Torch

Requiring New York health plans to cover in vitro fertilization would add up to 1.1 percent to premiums, according to a state study belatedly released today. [Read_more]

Gillibrand’s 4 percent fantasy by Bill Hammond |  | NY Torch

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is setting herself apart from many "Medicare for All" supporters by offering what sounds like a plan to pay for it. Unfortunately, the revenue source she keeps citing – a 4 percent tax on income – would fall short of what's needed by at least $1 trillion, and more likely $2 trillion, per year. [Read_more]

Lights, camera, cash in! by E.J. McMahon |  | NY Torch

The collapse of New York's effort to lure Amazon's "second headquarters" to Queens with more than $3 billion in city and state incentives sheds fresh light on a bigger, ongoing corporate subsidy—New York State's Film and TV Production Credit. [Read_more]
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