Bloomberg Offers ‘Good News’ on New York’s Budget
(New York Times) — Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, in unveiling his budget proposal on Thursday, summed up New York City’s financial health with a phrase scarcely heard in the halls of government these days: “It’s good news.” While other cities and states grapple with calamitous balance sheets and mass layoffs, Mr. Bloomberg proposed a $65.6 billion spending plan for the next fiscal year, about the same size as the current budget. But the city expects $49.9 billion of that will come from its own coffers, an increase of 12 percent.
And even as other governments have fallen into deep financial holes, the city’s forecast for tax revenues has increased by $2 billion since November, making the severe cuts many city workers had feared unnecessary. New York stands on surer footing than most major cities — at least for the moment — propped up by a financial industry that has come back roaring from the depths of the recession. Revenue from business taxes is expected to grow by 19 percent this year over the previous year.