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DiNapoli says New York budget on the right track, but warns leaders to keep filling rainy day fund

New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli
Mike Groll
New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli

State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli said New York’s projected budget made a stark turnaround compared to last year because of federal aid and higher tax receipts.

This time last year, the state was projecting budget shortfalls of $10+ billion, per year. But now the state Division of Budget sees surpluses ahead. DiNapoli said federal dollars came in the form of pandemic aid, increased Medicaid reimbursements and new infrastructure spending.

Local sales tax revenue also shot up last year by nearly 20%. However, some industries rebounded slower, including those in New York City.

For DiNapoli, this signals a unique risk. The changes in post pandemic spending makes it more difficult for budget forecasters to predict the future. Add to that the possibility of a prolonged pandemic and no more federal aid, DiNapoli cautioned lawmakers to keep adding to the state’s rainy day fund.

Charles is senior reporter focusing on special projects. He has won numerous awards including an IRE award, three SPJ Public Service Awards, and a National Murrow. He was also a finalist for the Livingston Award for Young Journalists and Third Coast Director’s Choice Award.