Empire Center

New York State

New York's Medicaid budget is growing at a faster rate than the state can currently afford. That comes as a published report alleges a potential pay-to-play arrangement between a large hospital association and Gov. Andrew Cuomo's 2018 re-election campaign.

Governor's office

A plan by Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration to require motorists to pay a $25 fee to replace aging license plates is getting some resistance. But the governor said it’s needed to comply with new cashless scanners being set up on toll roads and bridges all over the state.


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A budget watchdog group says New York’s budgeters used a sleight of hand to make it to seem as though the state was adhering to a legal cap on the growth of health care spending, by shifting a Medicaid payment from last fiscal year to this year.

The state budget has been in place for just less than two months and already there are signs that tax revenues may be significantly lower than expected. Anticipated federal tax reductions later this year may be one of the reasons.

National Public Radio

A provision in the Affordable Care Act replacement plan by Republicans in Congress sets up a potential clash with New York state over abortion coverage.


President-elect Donald Trump has promised to repeal the Affordable Health Care Act — also known as Obamacare — and replace it with something else. While no one really knows what that means, one health care analyst with a prominent Albany think tank said New York could be billions of dollars in the hole as a result.


If the state Senate is controlled by Democrats after the election, taxing and spending policies could see some differences. Many Democrats favor extending an income tax surcharge on millionaires when it expires next spring.


WBFO File Photo

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is making some changes to prevent any future bid-rigging in some of his major economic development projects. But critics on both the left and the right say Cuomo is failing to address the bigger picture — whether the $8.6 billion worth of programs are an effective use of public money.


WBFO News File Photo

A left leaning thank tank is out with its assessment of Governor Cuomo’s budget. They say there’s a lot to like and dislike about it.


State lawmakers said a few years ago that they would  no longer permit the controversial member item program to continue, but  critics say the old system, which gave taxpayer money to legislators’ pet projects, is being revived in a new form.


WBFO News file photo

Governor  Cuomo in the new legislative session will be  pushing for a bill to raise the minimum wage for all workers to $15 an hour, but some say it could backfire and result in fewer jobs.


WBFO News file photo

A fiscal watchdog group says it’s uncovered what it calls a "secret slush fund," used by Governor Cuomo and state legislators to fund pet projects around the state, but the governor’s budget office says the grants are subject to oversight. 

When Governor Cuomo and legislative leaders announced a new rebate check for property taxpayers, they touted it as a significant “real” benefit to average homeowners. But fiscal watchdog groups say the program is severely flawed, and the money could be better used on something else.

A near record number of school budgets were approved around the state in Tuesday’s vote. Many are attributing the relative lack of controversy to the three year old property tax cap that limits tax levy increases, as well as an increase in state aid.