The ruling majorities in the state Assembly and Senate are pushing new restrictions on the state’s massive economic development programs that pour hundreds of millions of dollars each year into the pockets of connected business interests, in hopes of preventing further public corruption.
Legislators have proposed a series of measures that will make the process more transparent and hopefully improve accountability.
Taxpayers would be shocked to learn that the $700 million handed out annually by Regional Economic Development Councils gets moved without the public being allowed to see what conflicts of interest members may have, or without any kind of follow up whatsoever to see if the money is having any impact.
Why it took them nearly seven years to figure out it might be a good idea to let taxpayers see how these crony councils are spending money is anybody’s guess.
Transparency is good, but the state shouldn’t be in the subsidy business in the first place. More public scrutiny may give people pause before engaging in corrupt behavior, but it can only be stopped completely by making the programs go away.
New Yorkers will still be left with programs and slush funds that structurally rip-off taxpayers. Though they’d get a better view of the cronyism. That’s not a real solution.
Reclaim New York thinks politicians need to be held accountable when their big-spending programs don’t deliver their intended results — especially when they breed more corruption, or favor-trading. Join today, and demand transparency and accountability that’s missing in New York.
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