Good Governance

New York State Fines and Fees Revenue Lacks Transparency, Obscures Economic Harms

New York State relies on fine, fee, and surcharge revenue to fund government operations- including the functions of the courts and state agencies providing criminal justice, public safety, and victim services. This funding is generated via a complex set of state statutes, including penal, vehicle and traffic, environmental conservation, judiciary, and finance laws and is spent through the General Fund and a bevy of State Special Revenue Funds. No one state government entity or agency is charged with comprehensively reporting on the imposition, collection, and [...]

Fact Sheet: State and Local Government Employment Has Been Largely Static, With Full-Time Jobs Eliminated in Critical Areas

Full-time employment in state government jobs grew by only 1 percent in New York State between 2010-2019, with the number of those employed totaling just over 236,000 in 2019. At the same time, local government employment decreased by 1 percent for full-time employees, with the number of employed totaling just over 882,000 in 2019, down from 893,000 in 2010. Full-time employment losses in both state and local government affected the areas of health, natural resources, and social and public welfare. Employment losses in health and [...]

Fact Sheet: Black New York Workers Have Been Hit Hard By The Pandemic Statewide

THE COVID‐19 PANDEMIC HAD AN UNPRECEDENTED EFFECT ON THE JOBS AND INCOMES OF NEW YORK STATE RESIDENTS, in addition to upending social norms and taking the lives of thousands. However, the pandemic’s burden was not evenly distributed across our population. The Fiscal Policy Institute found that Black workers statewide, who already had a higher rate of unemployment prior to the pandemic, experienced even greater losses. Our first analysis compares the employment measures among Black New Yorkers between March to November 2019 and March to November [...]

Fact Sheet: New York State Must Invest in Not‐for‐Profit Service Providers to Protect New Yorkers and Advance Equity

The Social Assistance subsector includes workers who provide direct and vital social assistance services to consumers, including vulnerable and at-risk populations and communities. It consists of the following industry groups: Individual and Family Services; Community Food and Housing, and Emergency and Other Relief Services; Vocational Rehabilitation Services; Child Day Care Services.1 In 2019, there were nearly 380,000 people estimated to be employed in New York’s social assistance subsector by not-for-profit, government, and private employers, 133,000 of whom (35 percent) were employed by not-for-profits. In New York State, total not-for-profit employment is largest in the Individual and Family Services and Child and Day [...]

Fiscal Policy Institute on One-House Budgets 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 15, 2021   Media Contact: communications@fiscalpolicy.org, 518-786-3156   Fiscal Policy Institute on One-House Budgets  (Albany, NY) Today the New York State Senate and Assembly released their one-house budgets as New York continues grappling with the pandemic. With the annual April 1st deadline fast approaching, today’s action sustains hope for a responsive budget process that can meet all New Yorkers' needs. The Legislature’s proposals recognize the need for support to ensure all New Yorkers can live, work, access health care, and receive a sound education. With the pandemic underscoring how [...]

COVID-19 Revenue Shortfalls Threaten Increase to Fines and Fees

 November 2020 Declining revenues threaten New York State’s Local Governments, starting with steep declines in sales tax revenue collections. This revenue stream, which annually totals just over $16 billion for New York State’s counties, cities, towns, villages, and school districts, is expected to shrink precipitously in 2020 and into 2021, exceeding the six percent decline realized during The Great Recession.[i] At the same time, the state’s property tax cap limits local governments’ ability to bolster local revenues. Moreover, Congress’s continued decision not to pass a [...]

2020-12-30T09:49:26-05:00November 23rd, 2020|Good Governance, Reports, Briefs and Presentations|

Over 40% of New Yorkers Uncounted as Feds Call for Early Halt to 2020 Census

8/4/2020 On Monday, August 3, 2020, the Census Bureau issued a statement, confirming reports that it plans for all 2020 census counting efforts to be cut four weeks short of what was expected. This is the federal administration’s latest attempt to inject an element of chaos and intimidation into what should be a unifying and democratic process. In April, the Census Bureau asked all households to respond to its 10-question survey either online or by mail. For those who did not respond, there has been [...]

2020-12-30T10:00:11-05:00August 7th, 2020|Blog, Economic Outlook, Good Governance|

Local Government Reliance on Fines and Fees to Raise Revenues Hurts Residents and Communities

Across New York State, fines and associated fees are relied upon by local governments as a source of local revenue. Decreased aid from the state coupled with the 2-percent property tax cap, which was enacted in 2011 and restricts annual property tax increases to the lesser of 2-percent or the rate of inflation, has led to decreased revenues for local jurisdictions. To make up for budget shortfalls - which have worsened during COVID-19 - local governments may be tempted to raise additional revenue through fines [...]

Fines and Fees: Raising Revenue at the Community’s Expense

As New York State looks toward restarting the economy in the wake of COVID-19, a new report from the Fiscal Policy Institute (FPI) warns local governments not to rush to build revenue through the use of fines and fees – a long-standing, inequitable source of funding primarily drawn from low-income communities and communities of color. Between 2010 and 2017, 31 city governments, out of 62, in New York State reported an increase in expected fine revenue in their annual budgets, with a median increase of [...]

NY’s Best Prescription? An Accurate Census Count

While the coronavirus is upending our daily lives, we must not let this public health crisis derail our state’s census participation. New York must have an accurate count because it will affect our lives for the next 10 years - including the resources our state has to combat the next health threat or climate crisis. All New Yorkers should complete a census form - either by mail, phone, or online. More information on completing the census is available from the Census Bureau.  Learn more by [...]

Investing in census outreach pays off

April 23, 2019. This opinion piece was written by Betsy Gotbaum, executive director of Citizens Union, details the importance of fully funding census outreach: "A low count in New York City and state could cost us one or two representatives in Congress and billions of dollars in federal aid. The accuracy of the 2020 census is not a small matter. The Trump administration is doing its best to ensure that states like New York wind up with an undercount. The Constitution requires that all residents [...]

2021-01-06T10:25:57-05:00April 23rd, 2019|FPI in the News, Good Governance|

The Unclear Path For New York’s Belated Census Effort

April 11, 2019. This article covers the concerns that New York is underfunded for outreach for the 2020 Census. The article notes that state legislators had wanted to spend $40 million to make sure all New Yorkers are counted, but Governor Andrew Cuomo gave the commission $20 million. The $40 million estimate was calculated by David Dyssegaard Kallick, deputy director of the Fiscal Policy Institute. He says with spending at $2 per person, each person would get about eight minutes of outreach, which may be fine for [...]

2021-01-06T10:23:42-05:00April 11th, 2019|FPI in the News, Good Governance|

$20M Enough for NY Count?

April 7, 2019. This article discusses the concerns about a possible failure to properly account for New York's population in the 2020 Census which could result in the potential loss of 2 seats in the House of Representatives and billions in federal funds. Deepening the worry is Governor Andrew Cuomo's delay in filling his appointments to the Complete Count Commission which was done after the Commission's report was sue and the state budget allocation of $20 million - an amount reached without formal input from [...]

2021-01-06T10:20:59-05:00April 8th, 2019|FPI in the News, Good Governance|

New York State Risks Losing Federal Funds Because of Poor Census Planning

March 8, 2019.  New York is one of the country’s largest states with one of the most notoriously hard-to-count populations. California is one of many state's that have begun planning for the upcoming census count, allocating $100million in their state budget to prepare for the decennial survey. This article discusses why planning for the census is important for New York and why the state needs to take action in this budget cycle. Need of at least $40 million The Fiscal Policy Institute, a nonpartisan think tank [...]

2021-01-06T09:47:26-05:00March 8th, 2019|FPI in the News, Good Governance|

Renewed Push in Albany for State investment in Census Preparation

March 4, 2019. This article discusses the efforts of advocates in a statewide coalition calling on the governor and legislature to include $60 million in the executive budget for 2020 census preparation. The article quotes advocates who argue that this funding is needed to handle a variety of challenges due to the census being administered online for the first time and to ensure an accurate count by providing funding to community based organizations who are trusted by the hard-to-count population. The Cuomo administration has previously [...]

2021-01-06T09:46:37-05:00March 4th, 2019|FPI in the News, Good Governance|
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