Joan's Feed
Nov 4, 2011

More working people turn to NYC shelters in downturn

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Six weeks before winter arrives, New York City has begun checking whether single adults arriving at homeless shelters can instead stay with friends or families, as the economic downturn makes temporary public housing more desirable, officials said on Friday.

The new shelter seekers are not limited to the working class.

“Most are lower-income New Yorkers, but there is a full range of New Yorkers coming into the system,” Seth Diamond, the commissioner of the city’s Department of Homeless Services, told Reuters.

Nov 4, 2011

NYC screens more single adults who need shelter

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Six weeks before winter arrives, New York City has begun checking whether single adults arriving at homeless shelters can instead stay with friends or families, as the economic downturn makes temporary public housing more desirable, officials said on Friday.

The new shelter seekers are not limited to the working class.

“Most are lower-income New Yorkers, but there is a full range of New Yorkers coming into the system,” Seth Diamond, the commissioner of the city’s Department of Homeless Services, told Reuters.

Nov 3, 2011

New York to state agencies: Cut budgets 2.5 pct in 2012

NEW YORK (Reuters) – New York state’s agencies were told this week to make plans to cut their budgets for next year by 2.5 percent to help close a deficit that could top $2 billion.

The latest round of state budget cuts, which Budget Director Robert Megna ordered in a letter dated October 31, follows last year’s 10 percent year-to-year cut, which helped Governor Andrew Cuomo close a $10 billion deficit.

Nov 3, 2011

NY to state agencies: Cut budgets 2.5 pct in 2012

NEW YORK, Nov 3 (Reuters) – New York state’s agencies were
told this week to make plans to cut their budgets for next
year by 2.5 percent to help close a deficit that could top $2
billion.

The latest round of state budget cuts, which Budget
Director Robert Megna ordered in a letter dated Oct. 31,
follows last year’s 10 percent year-to-year cut, which helped
Governor Andrew Cuomo close a $10 billion deficit.

Nov 1, 2011

NYC firms got $898 mln of aid but job data slim

NEW YORK, Nov 1 (Reuters) – New York City has paid $898
million in subsidies to companies that promise more jobs and
not to move away, but has failed to track whether the firms
meet their commitments for each project, officials said on
Tuesday.

Financial services firms benefited the most from these
subsidies over a 23-year period, according to the city’s
Independent Budget Office.

Oct 28, 2011

S&P puts 23 municipal tobacco bonds on credit watch

NEW YORK, Oct 28 (Reuters) – Some 23 municipal tobacco bond
issues could face rating downgrades after Standard & Poor’s put
them on CreditWatch with negative implications on Friday.

States, counties and cities have sold billions of dollars
of bonds backed by payments that cigarette manufacturers agreed
to make to help cover the healthcare costs of ailing smokers.

Oct 27, 2011

NY City aims to replace Wall St pension managers

NEW YORK, Oct 27 (Reuters) – New York City plans to overhaul
its $120 billion pension funds by putting a chief investment
officer in charge in a move to both depoliticize the system and
improve returns, city officials said on Thursday.

Investment decisions are currently made by five separate
boards and outside fund managers.

Oct 20, 2011

NYC pension funds are cost-effective: report

By Joan Gralla

(Reuters) – Traditional pension plans provide a “better bang for the buck” for New York City public employees, paying the same retirement benefits as those used in the private sector but at a significantly lower cost, according to a report issued by the comptroller on Thursday.

Some of the cost savings enjoyed by public pensions stem from their investment expertise and their leverage as institutional investors, the report said.

Aug 30, 2011

NY, NJ need faster federal aid after Hurricane Irene

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Both New York and New Jersey have formally asked the federal government for an “expedited major disaster declaration” to cope with the widespread damage caused by Hurricane Irene, officials said on Tuesday.

The neighboring Northeastern states are still coping with possible hazards, from flooding rivers to power outages, which are keeping first responders busy and delaying damage estimates.

Aug 29, 2011

Battling blazes in city of skyscrapers

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Just weeks before the 10th anniversary of the air attacks on the World Trade Center, New York firefighters gave politicians and journalists a glimpse into what it is like to battle blazes in the skyscraper city.

It involves crawling around in the smoke and dark on a wet cement floor, drenched in sweat and clad in a bunker suit, mask and helmet and with an oxygen tank strapped to your back.