Tearing Down The Scaffold Law

Written by Laura Nahmias on . Posted in Economic Development, Real Estate/Construction, Spotlight

A new coalition eyes reforms to a workers’ safety statute New York is the last state in the nation to hold employers entirely liable for work-site injuries. A coalition of powerful business groups and tort-reform advocates aims to change that. This is not the first time tort-reform advocates have tried to change the law, which has been in place in its current incarnation since 1969. But a new coalition that includes the powerful Business Council of New York State could… [More]

Bridging The Skills Gap

Written by Adam Lisberg on . Posted in Economic Development, Spotlight

Amid high unemployment, New York tech jobs go begging In offices across New York City, technology entrepreneurs hunt for developers, Mayor Michael Bloomberg pushes for more visas for foreign engineers and city officials plot a massive science campus to attract smart technical students. Yet in schools across the city, a potential talent pool of 51,000 high school students graduated this year—even if only 17,500 of them were college-ready. In a city where the black unemployment rate is three times higher… [More]


Written by City & State on . Posted in Economic Development, Spotlight

TOP ISSUES TALENT Finding enough good engineers and developers is the single biggest challenge for New York City technology firms. Bringing more young tech standouts to New York, where they can feed that talent engine, is a key purpose of the city’s plan for an applied-sciences campus in conjunction with a major university. In cantrast with what happened in the city’s first tech boom, many of the open positions now require advanced programming, math and science skills. SPACE Technology companies… [More]


Written by Adam Lisberg on . Posted in Banking/Insurance, Spotlight

For all Spotlight articles, please go to: ISSUE SPOTLIGHT: Tort Reform Tearing Down The Scaffold Law Sen. Jim Seward Senate Insurance Committee Chairman Q: Are tort payouts in New York State damaging the state’s economy? JS: I’m aware of the impact of New York’s tort laws on insurance premiums, and while it’s important that injured plaintiffs are able to ensure reasonable compensation for their injury, lawsuits shouldn’t result in a windfall that everyone living in or doing business in New… [More]


Written by Laura Nahmias on . Posted in Banking/Insurance, Spotlight

Why New York Won’t Pass Medical Malpractice Reforms Most everybody in New York state government agrees the state’s costly tort system needs to change—but nobody seems to think it will. The reason is simple: No one agrees on what makes tort costs in New York so high, or what can be done to lower them definitively. “New York State suffers from an extreme lack of data on medical malpractice,” J. Robert Hunter, a former federal insurance commissioner, told a group… [More]


Written by Adam Lisberg on . Posted in Economic Development, Spotlight

SETH PINSKY President and CEO, New York City Economic Development Corporation Q: Is technology really going to be a big part of the city’s economy going forward, or is it a fad? SP: The mayor’s view, which I think is spot-on, is that there should be no one industry upon which New York entirely relies. And that’s the case whether it be technology or financial services or any of the other sectors in which New York is strong. And the… [More]

The Boom Is Back

Written by Adam Lisberg on . Posted in Economic Development, Spotlight

A maturing tech industry becomes a pillar of New York City’s economy When New York’s first technology boom exploded, it took down an industry—but not much else. The city’s “Silicon Alley” of downtown Internet developers, puffed up in an atmosphere where putting up a website or tacking “.com” on a company name qualified as a business model, deflated along with the rest of the high-tech bubble in 2000, leaving nothing but empty offices in its wake. Yet after a decade… [More]


Written by City & State on . Posted in Banking/Insurance, Spotlight

THE ISSUES MEDICAL MALPRACTICE New York City has become famous (or infamous) for the large judgments juries award plaintiffs in some medical malpractice trials. Hospitals and doctors claim the multimillion-dollar payouts are a major cost driver for their medical-malpractice insurance premiums, and lead doctors to order expensive tests they don’t need to avoid liability in case of lawsuits. In last year’s budget negotiations, Gov. Andrew Cuomo supported a $250,000 cap on noneconomic damages as part of his Medicaid-reform package, but… [More]

Scorecard: New York Manufacturing

Written by City & State on . Posted in Economic Development, Energy, Government Operations, Labor/Unions, Spotlight, Technology

THE ISSUES Energy costs Energy policy and prices have a disproportionate effect on the manufacturing industry’s ability to compete in the global marketplace. New York has long had some of the highest energy costs in the country. Some industrial electricity prices are 32 percent higher than the national average. Policy initiatives like Recharge New York, which allows manufacturers and business owners to apply for low-cost energy allocations from the government, are expected to help, but some advocates say the government… [More]

The New Assembly Line

Written by Andrew J. Hawkins on . Posted in Economic Development, Government Operations, Spotlight

No more smokestacks—New York’s manufacturing is high-tech, and hurting for labor By Andrew J. Hawkins Once upon a time, New York was a manufacturing giant. Lackawanna Steel, Kodak, Xerox, Carrier—names synonymous with high-end goods designed and assembled in the United States—all had their headquarters in New York. They employed hundreds of thousands of workers, earned billions of dollars and sent millions in tax revenues to the state’s coffers. Today, the manufacturing sector is much changed. The old manufacturing stalwarts now… [More]