Budget Recklessness

The Story

Mayor de Blasio’s tenure has been marked by lavish spending. With the city having enjoyed surplus tax revenues for years, and the stock market setting new highs weekly, de Blasio has been able to keep his constituencies happy. But revenues are leveling off, and no economic boom lasts forever; it’s past time for the mayor to exercise some budgetary prudence.

The Facts You Need to Know

  1. Spending: The city budget under de Blasio has grown from $76.2 billion to $87.3 billion, a 14.6% increase in constant dollars. Read more.

  2. Flat: Personal income-tax and sales-tax revenues have been largely flat or declining over the last few years, and the city is putting aside less and less money for a rainy day. Read more.

  3. Debt: New York City is running a $95 billion deficit in funding retiree health benefits for public workers — and the figure continues to rise. Read more.

“To make his budgets add up, de Blasio has pushed much of the cost for past spending into the future — making it tougher to cut spending while protecting public services in a future downturn.”

Nicole Gelinas, Manhattan Institute senior fellow

Twitter Take

The Past is Present

Mayor Giuliani’s Economic Wrong Turn By William J. Stern (Summer 1996)

“More borrowing isn’t the remedy for an economy crushed by high taxes and a bloated city payroll.”

Scheduling Note

In observance of New Year's Day, The Beat will resume on Wednesday, January 3.

And in other news...

“He may have publicly supported Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential race, but Mayor de Blasio is turning to Clinton’s lefty opponent, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, to swear him in for a second term on New Year’s Day.”