Effect of the ACA on Personal Debt – It Goes Down

April 21, 2016 Debt

This is as we – or at least most of us – would expect. Compared to people in states that did not expand Medicaid under the ACA, newly available Medicaid in States that expanded the program enabled newly covered people to reduce their unpaid bills and debts.  Luojia Hu, Robert Kaestner, Bhashkar Mazumder, Sarah Miller, […]

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Debt Markers for Selected Upstate NYS Cities

January 19, 2015 Budget

Continuing the discussion regarding the City of Albany, one of the participants was concerned about debt and the potential for taking on excess amounts. That’s always a legitimate concern. So I ran some comparisons. In the first, for selected cities in New York, you’ll see a really good indicator. That is debt service (principle and interest) as […]

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Throwing Good Money After Bad … Over and Over and Over

October 16, 2012 Bond Rating

Harrisburg, PA is flat broke and the problem is related to its being legally, financially tied to a public authority, the Harrisburg Authority Resource Recovery Facility, which financed and built a waste incinerator. But this is awful. Bond Girl (@munilass on Twitter) lays out the detail at “Self-Evident”. This is a longish piece, but at […]

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County on Crack? (Nassau County Debt Variety)

September 7, 2012 County Government

Nassau County, NY is not in financial trouble because of economic decline. It’s among the wealthiest counties in New York. It is in financial trouble because of an lengthy history of bad decision-making and evidently an inability to break its debt habit. Nassau County has a history of borrowing to pay tax refunds. Having been […]

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Should the Federal Reserve Lend to State and Local Governments?

June 23, 2012 Debt

Should state and local governments borrow from the Federal Reserve? Yes. Why? They’ll pay lower interest rates, thereby saving money without reducing services. The only losers will be the banks and other lenders, who are doing just fine, thank you. Should the Federal Reserve Lend to state and local governments? Yes. Why? See above. And […]

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Part of the Cost of Government is Wall Street Scam

June 23, 2012 Bonds

Buried deep within the structures of public finance is the cash for capital projects that has not yet been spent because projects take time. This cash sits in accounts that earn interest. And the interest paid is determined by auctions. But many of these auctions are rigged. Matt Taibbi, of Rolling Stone, covers a trial […]

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Big Credit Downgrades Can Say Two Things, One About the Rated, One About the Rating Agency

May 10, 2012 County

Paul Greaves on Twitter on the Moody’s downgrade from A2 to Baa3 of Rockland County, NY: Fundamental problem with super downgrades like Rockland County – investors buy munis for capital preservation, diversity and stability. Greaves is right. But where do abrupt downgrades come from? Either something abruptly changed in financial condition of the organization being […]

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The Shin Bone’s Connected to the Thigh Bone

December 7, 2011 Business

My friend and colleague, Tim Maniccia, who runs Policy Innovation, noted some interesting connections yesterday. What triggered Tim’s observations was the bankruptcy of American Airlines. The first thing he noted was that American’s four pension plans cover almost 130,000 participants, but they have only $8.3 billion in assets to cover $18.5 billion in benefits. Were […]

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Numbers News

September 29, 2011 Cities

Just for a taste. Though most of the taste is bitter Roubini says the economy has started a downturn.spending less on entertainment and charity. Guess we can’t count on charity to help those who are struggling in a down eocnomy. Fifth consecutive year that US cities suffer a revenue decline. Original study was done of […]

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Good – Voters Turn Down Bond Authorization for Another Arena

August 3, 2011 Debt

Nassau County, NY is already in deep, deep financial trouble. Despite the fact that it is one of if not the wealthiest county in New York, its finances are currently being overseen by a state-sponsored and enforced financial control board. Despite their weakened financial straits, Nassau proposed borrowing $400 million for a new hockey arena. […]

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