The fiscal year 2016 state budget enacted last week includes a 6.0 percent increase in annual formula-based aid to school districts from $21.8 billion to $23.1 billion. This is the third consecutive year in which the Governor and the legislature have busted the statutory growth cap they agreed upon in 2011.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority needs about $32 billion over the next five years to repair, replace and improve its facilities, notably the vast and essential mass transit system. It only has about $13 billion.
This report examines the MTA’s current fiscal challenges and identifies options for funding its capital investment needs for the next five years. The analysis of these options includes consideration of how well measures to raise money for the MTA fit into a broader financing plan for the state’s entire transportation system, including its extensive road and bridge network.
New York State's economic development programs have long been the subject of debate because it is difficult to measure the benefits they produce. Are the State's considerable investments worthwhile? Although their political value is clear, their economic value is not.
On Sunday March 22 fares for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s (MTA) subways and buses will go up. Like three previous biennial fare increases since 2009, this hike is needed to raise revenue for transit operations. However, more money could be gained or the increase could be less painful for riders if the MTA pursues another, arguably fairer, revenue-raising strategy.
As New York’s leadership negotiates a final agreement on the state budget for fiscal year 2016, one outstanding issue is the Brownfield Cleanup Program (BCP). Following calls for reform from the State Comptroller, environmental groups, and the 2013 New York State Tax Reform and Fairness Commission, Governor Cuomo proposed stricter eligibility criteria for BCP redevelopment credits in last year’s budget.
New York State has been a laggard in adopting innovative approaches for completing public capital projects. In 2011, State leaders attempted to make up ground by allowing certain State agencies to experiment with design-build contracting for a three-year trial period. The trial period produced convincing results that merit permanently authorizing and extending design-build authority as a first key step in modernizing the State’s approach to public projects.