Dominance of Special Interests Dashes NYC Hopes for Recovery

by Eugene E. Dallaire, Assoc. Editor; Civil Engineering Magazine, New York, NY 10017,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1978, Vol. 48, Issue 11, Pg. 99-100

Document Type: Feature article


How well is New York City doing now? Is it really on the way to recovery? Since the landmark report by the Temporary Commission on City Finances was released over a year ago, very little in the way of reform has been accomplished. The fact is that not only will the City not have enough money to carry out reforms (e.g., debt retirement, tax reductions, a major step-up in infrastructure repair), it will have a substantial budget gap four years hence. A big part of the problem is the heavy load carried by wages, fringes, and pensions. And given the power of the municipal unions, these are not likely to be curbed substantially. There is a widespread feeling among taxpayer groups that City and state officials are not very responsive to the demands of the vast majority of the electorate. Accordingly, there is a movement afoot to amend the NY State constitution to permit use of the initiative and referendum.

Subject Headings: Employee compensation and benefits | High-rise buildings | Retirement | Taxation | Infrastructure | Budgets | Load factors | Local government | New York | United States | New York City

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