New York’s Balanced Budget: Passing the Buck and Business Opportunities in a $10 Billion Reduction

INPUT Sr. Analyst Chris Cotner reports.

The New York State Legislature and Governor Cuomo reached an agreement by the April 1 deadline to balance the state budget. The press releases and budget introductions by both touted making the “hard choices” to change “business as usual” in the state. Notably, the state faced a $10 billion shortfall for FY 11–12 before enacting the current budget measures. After budget measures, the state’s FY 11–12 budget was balanced with a $0 deficit. So, how exactly did New York eliminate $10 billion from its budget and where can business opportunities be found in such an environment?

At first glance, the realities of budget math and political speeches seem different, as the bottom line of the state budget indicates a cut of approximately $3.1 billion from FY 11 to FY 12. Where is the other $7 billion?

Taxes will be raised (accounting for $324 million). However, this tax increase is certainly not as egregious as some in the media have indicated (passing fairly easily in both houses). What about the other $6.7 billion? Well, there are an additional savings of $900 million in one-time actions and another $300 million through other financial measures. Still, where is the balance of the balanced budget?

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