This Week in Albany

Week ending April 7, 2017

State Budget Update

At the time of this email, state budget negotiations remain in flux.

After failing to reach an agreement on a full budget by the April 1 deadline, the legislature passed a budget extender this week that will fund the government until May 31. The extender will maintain state operations funding at a flat rate from last year, but does not include any new funding for schools since school budgets continue through June.  

Despite passing the budget extender, legislators and the Governor continue to negotiate a full budget. The legislature has passed several bills that are part of a full budget, and could possibly reach an agreement on outstanding issues as soon as Friday.

Stay tuned for updates on budget negotiations as they become available.

START-UP NY Report

The Empire State Development Corporation (ESDC) released its 2016 report on the START-UP NY program this week. While press releases claim the creation of 1,135 jobs since the program began reporting in 2014, only 722 of those jobs are considered net new jobs.

According to the report, nearly 40% of the businesses participating in the program are not new to New York. And while the report claims that START-UP NY is “one of the most cost-effective” economic development programs in the state, that analysis ignores the tens of millions of dollars spent on advertising for the program to out-of-state businesses.

While the Cuomo administration continues to try and convince taxpayers that START-UP NY is a smart investment, the reality is that it is an extremely flawed program that wastes taxpayer dollars.

Gorsuch Confirmed

Neil Gorsuch became the 113th justice of the Supreme Court when his nomination was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on Friday. The confirmation comes more than a year after the death of Justice Antonin Scalia.

The confirmation came after a filibuster by Senate Democrats forced a change in the Senate rules to require a simple majority vote rather than the traditionally required 60 votes. The nomination was confirmed by a vote of 54-45.

At a Glance

The legislature is not scheduled to meet next week, but outstanding budget negotiations could change that.
Legislators are currently scheduled to return to Albany on April 24th.