© 2024
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Blair Horner

  • One of the last-minute deals at the end of the New York legislative session last month was approval of a bill to help protect patients from the repercussions of outstanding medical debts. The bill, if signed into law by Governor Hochul, would prohibit credit reporting agencies, including Transunion, Experian, and Equifax, from including medical debt in consumer credit reports.
  • The big news out of Albany last week was Governor Hochul’s announcement of a “conceptual” budget deal. The governor said that she and the state’s legislative leaders had agreed to a final budget that would spend $229 billion and that the agreement would include changes to the state’s bail law, increase the minimum wage, add to the number of active charter schools, and provide a state infusion of cash for the beleaguered Metropolitan Transportation Authority.
  • April 1st, the first day of New York State’s fiscal year, came and went this weekend with no state budget agreement. It has been a few years since the state budget was approved on-time, with all recent ones enacted in the first half of April.
  • The big Albany news last week was the unveiling of Governor Hochul’s 2023-2024 Executive Budget proposal. The proposed $227 billion proposal covers a lot of ground, calling for more money for existing programs, as well as offering new policy initiatives. The governor wants record increases in education and Medicaid spending. She also would set aside more than $1 billion to help New York City pay some costs of providing social services to new asylum seekers. Her budget offered details about her plan to build 800,000 units of affordable housing over the next decade.
  • The United Nations stated that the world must reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 43% by 2030 or civilization will be devastated. 2030 is only 7 years away. The UN declaration is in line with New York’s goals and thus the state’s climate goals set the floor – not the ceiling – for action. Missing those goals ignores climate science and puts New York on a trajectory that could lead to unnecessary deaths, human suffering, and staggering costs from flooding, storms, and heatwaves.
  • According to the Oxford dictionary, the word propaganda means: “information, especially of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote or publicize a particular political cause or point of view.” The use of propaganda was on display last week at a state Senate hearing on New York’s climate plan.
  • After a brutal snowstorm in Western New York, the state of California has been inundated with record rainfall. Of course, big rainstorms and deadly snowstorms are not new, but the frequency and intensity are what climate scientists have been predicting.
  • New York leaves little time for a newly elected governor to relax after her campaign. Under the state Constitution, she has until February 1st to introduce her plan for the Executive Budget. While her proposal is being developed, she also has to act on any legislation that was approved during the last legislative session – which in 2022 ended in early June—but has not yet made its way to her desk.
  • Ten years ago this past weekend, Superstorm Sandy pummeled the East Coast, resulting in the deaths of 44 New Yorkers, flooded 50 miles of New York City land, left 2.5 million residents without power, resulted in $19 billion in damages and lost economic activity, rendered 35,000 residents temporarily or permanently displaced, and caused damage to more than 9,100 homes.
  • Americans generate a lot of trash. According to the EPA, in 2018 the United States produced nearly 300 million tons of waste. Unfortunately, most of that waste ends up in the nation’s landfills.