Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver has jumped on the bandwagon in favor of raising New York City’s top resident income tax rate — just a day after two undeclared 2013 mayoral candidates, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and then-City Comptroller William Thompson stepped (somewhat gingerly) off it.
Back in 2009, both Quinn and Thompson advocated raising the New York City resident income tax on high-income households. More recently, different plans to raise the top rate have also been floated by three other prospective Democratic candidates — Comptroller john Liu, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer and, most recently, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio.
City Council Speaker Christine Quinn has her eye on the other half of City Hall. In her current position, she already represents New Yorkers.
So why does she feel so powerless that she supports outside action to force the city to do stuff — when she is the city? (more…)
The latest mergers & acquisitions figures are out, and they’re not pretty.
According to mergermarket, an M&A data watcher, the year’s global slowdown is not only continuing but accelerating. New York can hang on to a thread of good news only in that its rate of decline is not accelerating. (more…)
Are New York City’s public-pension managers running an investment fund — or an affordable-housing program?
Last week, City Comptroller John Liu announced the latest venture of the police fund and the civilian workers’ fund, which control $68 billion between them to pay out current and future benefits to retirees.
The two funds will invest $19 million in a fixed-rate, 30-year mortgage for the Diego Beekman Houses, a 38-building apartment complex on Beekman Avenue in the Mott Haven neighborhood of the Bronx. (more…)
New York will (one presumes) have a new mayor come January 2014. One question for that mayor will be whether he or she chooses the past or the present.
The (future) present: the new mayor likely will face a deficit of $3.7 billion for his or her inaugural budget (fiscal year 2015). That’s a good seven percent of city tax revenues.
The past: unless Mayor Bloomberg and municipal unions do some serious negotiating in the next few months, the new mayor will face more than a dozen expired contracts — and union leaders requesting retroactive settlements. (more…)
New York’s state revenues are disproportionately generated in New York City and its suburbs, resulting in a net transfer of income to upstate, according to a report issued today by the Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government. Meanwhile, a study by the Independent Budget Office (IBO) shows that “tax effort” is also highest downstate, especially in the city.
Both reports were released and discussed this morning at a conference in Manhattan co-sponsored by the the Rockefeller Institute, IBO and the Citizens Budget Commission.
Here’s some more evidence of how Gov. Cuomo’s 29 percent personal income-tax hike for top earners is a risky proposition for New York City.
In response to a request from City Councilman James Oddo, the city’s Independent Budget Office (IBO) has analyzed 2009 tax data to see who pays New York City’s personal income tax.
The result? New York City’s top one percent — 34,612 individuals or families — made 33.8 percent of personal income in the city, or an average $2.2 million each.
They paid 43.2 percent of city personal-income taxes, or an average $75,416. (more…)
New York City public advocate Bill de Blasio thinks they are, at least to some extent. The advocate’s office announced yesterday that it was launching an investigation into the amount of time it takes NYC agencies to answer Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) requests.
At the Empire Center, on behalf of our transparency website SeeThroughNY, we’ve been FOILing public records on a regular basis for more than 3 years — in fact we’ve literally filed thousands of them.
FOIL responses are like a mixed bag of nuts - you don't know what you'll get.
The Results are a mixed bag of nuts.
Many agencies hit, or at least try to hit, the deadlines and parameters laid out in FOIL, while others appear to completely ignore them. It takes the New York City Office of Payroll Administration considerably longer to provide us with the City’s payroll than it does for the state comptroller’s office to provide us the state payroll (on average — about 9 months vs. 1 month).
These inconsistencies led us to take a long, close look at FOIL, and we made some suggestions in our SeeThrough Government Transparency Act earlier this year. The Act clarifies and updates timelines for FOIL requests and makes (more…)
You hear a lot of talk about the panoply of problems facing Wall Street, from the Volcker Rule to derivatives regulations to today’s Congressional hearing on whether exchange-traded funds are going to blow up the economy (answer: maybe).
But here’s a simple numbers comparison that points up the challenge for Wall Street (and New York). From the New York Times’s Dealbook today on Goldman Sachs’s second-ever loss as a public company: (more…)
Nicole Gelinas has a must-read op-ed in the New York Post today on the sinking fortunes of New York City’s financial sector. Her message:
Thanks to Washington’s support for big banks, New York City has been a cocoon of prosperity compared to the rest of the nation over the last three years.
But banks can’t stay on the dole forever — and the city’s done nothing in the 37 months since Lehman Bros. collapsed to prepare for a leaner Wall Street.