Coming to a state near you

Probably Connecticut. But for now, consider New York, which is facing a $10 billion deficit and has politicians absolutely refusing to cut salaries or state employee payrolls.

[Senator]  Kruger, a Brooklyn Democrat who is the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, has amassed a campaign war chest of $2.1 million, in part because of generous contributions from his labor union allies.

Despite a deficit of more than $3 billion, Mr. Kruger has threatened to block any significant cuts to health care and education, the biggest spending areas in the budget. He has presented his own budget plan, which has startled even Albany veterans for its reliance on one-time maneuvers and financial gimmickry.

The governor and lawmakers have clashed over spending before. But recent events have created a new urgency and, in the view of Mr. Paterson and budget analysts, a desperate situation.

The state has lost 270,000 jobs since the start of the recession. The tax bounty from Wall Street has shrunk.

And spending just keeps soaring. New York now spends more than any other state on Medicaid, twice the national average per capita. It also spends the most on school aid, per student, than any other state.

This will be fascinating and awful to watch. The only way out of New York’s budget deficit, if spending cuts are ruled out, is to whack the towns and citizens and, of course, plead for more money from Washington. It’ll be a brutal combination and probably a model of what to expect next year here in Connecticut when our own financial games run out of steam. Whoo boy.


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10 responses to “Coming to a state near you

  1. KC

    That’ll show those taxpayers! We won’t give up spending and what are YOU going to do about it?

  2. We have a Democratic Governor and the Democrats have a majority in the state senate. When the bus goes into the ditch we’ll know who to blame.

    I’ll let you know when the state troopers start patrolling on bicycles.

  3. '73Refugee

    I wonder what the average CT/NY/NJ state worker salaries+benefits are compared to those working in the private sector.

    I’ll bet that chart would make more than a few taxpayers very angry.

    • christopherfountain

      Federal workers now make twice as much as their private counterparts. I imagine their state brethren aren’t far behind.

  4. Anonymous

    Free choices of those who want to be NY/NJ taxpayers, employers and voters…consenting, literate, numerate adults, right? Can move to Dallas or Houston if really despise taxes/corruption of NY/NJ/CA

  5. '73Refugee

    Perfect. Every Federal hire kills 2 private jobs possibilities.

  6. KC

    The old adage used to be that you earned less in most middle level government jobs because of the other benefits that came with the job. For instance, new entries to the field got experience, you didn’t have to worry about an expensive wardrobe or being a little unusual, vacation was good and so on. When I first finished undergrad, I worked for the City of NO and nobody griped about the peanuts we earned because the job met their needs in other ways. I knew that things had changed but I didn’t know it was so dramatic.

  7. Peg

    I continue to be mystified by this. In the private sector, I see people whose income has dropped by 5% to as much as 80% – if, of course, they still have a job and are earning any income at all.

    Yet, public employees seem drifting along in la-la land. Virtually all aren’t willing to look at a fifty cents a month cut, and many are still demanding decent raises. HELLO! Don’t these people own television sets that broadcast news? Don’t they read newspapers? (Well, the few that are left.) Don’t they ever click on the Internet to read five minutes of news?

    I guess the answers are “no” and they have no clue that we are in the most troubling economy since the Great Depression.

  8. DebtVulture

    Peg, they probably have a clue but what do they care? What are the taxpayers going to do about it? So far they/we have done nothing. Why should they give up their perks/salaries/raises when we the taxpayers won’t stand up for ourselves.

    The private sector now works for the public section don’t you know.