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Donta Myles confirms Mayor Restaino didn’t get Council approval for Bolton St. Johns lobbying contract

Niagara Falls Councilman Donta Myles has confirmed in comments on social media that the Niagara Falls City Council did not authorize a lobbying contract with Bolton St. Johns, the controversial lobbying firm that has been marred in conflict of interest

State Budget

Rec and restroom facility projects among fresh DASNY pork

A total of $87 million were steered to 174 new grants for local projects over the past ten months by the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York (DASNY), according to data the Empire Center recently received under a FOIL request. The

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DiNapoli is being urged to acquire Niagara Falls Redevelopment, LLC

Urban planners and economic development experts are urging Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli to invest in Niagara Falls by acquiring Niagara Falls Redevelopment, LLC, which controls more than 140 acres of prime real estate in the downtown tourism district. The investment group has

State Budget

Cuomo creates $2 billion fund for those living in New York illegally

Since Democrats’ $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan (ARP) was enacted in February, states have been busy designing ways to spend their share of the $350 billion in one-time federal “state and local aid” provided by that legislation. One of the most novel may be

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Camille Brandon to lead Hochul’s gubernatorial campaign

Sources tell The Chronicle that longtime Western New York political operative and Bolton St. Johns lobbyist Camille Brandon is likely to lead Kathy Hochul‘s gubernatorial campaign in the increasingly likely event that Governor Andrew Cuomo is removed from office. Observers say

State Budget

State reduced funding for public health in decade before pandemic

Sharp reductions in state funding for core public health functions over the past decade may have weakened New York’s defenses against the coronavirus pandemic, according to testimony delivered today by Bill Hammond, the Empire Center’s senior fellow for health policy.

State Budget

For now, Cuomo is still managing the State budget process

BY E.J. McMahon With less than a month to go before the April 1 start of New York State’s 2022 fiscal year, Governor Cuomo has been politically wounded by the allegations of bullying and sexual harassment now being investigated by


New York’s proposed nursing home fixes cause for concern

A new report released today by the Empire Center raises questions about the factors contributing to high COVID infection and mortality rates in New York nursing homes—and what reforms should be adopted in response. “The updated data shows there is no


Vaccine appointment system was not ready for primetime

BY E.J. McMAHON The two top priorities Governor Cuomo identified in his State of the State speech Monday morning were “Defeat COVID” and “Vaccinate New York.” Judging by my personal experience of the Health Department’s labyrinthine vaccine appointment system, the


Cuomo delays releasing nursing home data for two more months

The Cuomo administration is refusing to release a full count of coronavirus deaths in New York nursing homes for another two months, until March 22. In a letter to the Empire Center on Wednesday, the Health Department claimed that it needs a