In addition to our own research and analysis located in our publications page, we recommend these following resources for researching development subsidies in the city and state. Many are audits and critiques of development subsidy programs and reveal a need for greater accountability and transparency in State and City programs.
New York State
How much do tax breaks to business cost New York State? $8 billion according to the Fiscal Policy Institute's report, "The Growing Budget Burden of New York's Business Tax Expenditures".
The Office of the State Comptroller is charged with auditing the state’s public economic development agencies including Industrial Development Agencies and the Empire State Development Corporation. The New York State Authorities Budget Office monitors various public authorities (including the NYC IDA). Its website contains Some of the agency's audits regarding the state's use of subsidies for development are below:
- May 2010 - DiNapoli IDA Report: Jobs Data Still Needs Improvement - Calls for Additional Reforms to Enhance Transparency and Accountability.
- February 2009 - Annual Performance on New York State's Industrial Development Agencies, Fiscal Year Ending 2007
- May 2009 - DiNapoli IDA Report: Cost to Create Jobs Increases, While Actual Jobs Declined
- 2006 - Hevesi Audit Finds Only a Third of IDA Projects Across State Met Job Creation Goals, Details Lack of Effective Processes to Evaluate Activities and Verify Reported Data
- May 2006 - Industrial Development Agencies in New York State - Background, Issues and Recommendations
- April 2005 - Job Development Authority: Internal Controls Over Procurement and Contracting Activities and Conflict of Interest
- January 2000 - Empire State Development: Performance of Job Development Programs
- February 1999 - State of New York Empire State Development Corporation: Administration of Selected Projects Funded Through the Regional Economic Development Partnership Program
- December 1997 - Consolidation of the State's Economic Development Entities and Programs.
- December 1995 - Job Development Authority: Management of Loan Portfolio
- June 1995 - New York City Economic Development Corporation: Improvements Needed to Strengthen Industrial Development Agency Program.
State Senator Franz S. Leichter, Money for Nothing: The High Cost and Low Success Rate of Business Subsidies in New York. February 1998.
New York City
The New York City Economic Development Agency which houses the city’s Industrial Development Agency and the Capital Resource Corporation (CRC) is audited by the Office of the New York City Comptroller. The New York State Authorities Budget Office has budget and financial information for the IDA, CRC and the EDC.The City Comptroller serves as an ex-officio board member of IDA and CRC boards. Recent audits and other information from this office include:
- July 2010 - City Recaptures $120 Million from EDC
- February 2010 - Comptroller Liu on Today's Economic Development Corporation's IDA and CRC Votes
Other resources on economic development subsidies include:
Gross, Courtney. “Subsidies in the City”. Gotham Gazette. April 2010.
Kleiman, Neil Scott. The Sector Sector Solution: Building a Broader Base for the New Economy. Center for an Urban Future. January 2000.
Leichter, State Senator Franz S. New York City Corporate Welfare: City Tax Incentives Granted by the Giuliani Administration, A Failed and Foolish Policy. August 1997.
Office of the State Comptroller, New York City Economic Development Corporation: Improvements Needed to Strengthen Industrial Development Agency Program, Report A-6-94. June 7, 1995. www.osc.state.ny.us/audits/
In addition to the links below, GJNY extensive research on the development of the new Yankee Stadium and other sports facilities is found in the Spotlight on Economic Development section. For those interested in sports facilities and subsidies we recommend you visit Field of Schemes, Atlantic Yards Report, Develop Don't Destroy Brooklyn and Save Our Parks.
Selected audits and reports on sport facilities in New York City:
The Independent Budget Office of New York City: The Proposed Arena at Atantic Yards: An Analysis of City Fiscal Gains and Losses, November 2009.
IRS, Treasury Department. Treatment of Payments in Lieu of Taxes Under Section 141, 2008.
The long-awaited ruling that will make it harder, if not impossible, to finance the construction of future sports facilities with triple tax-exempt bonds. The ruling grandfathers in financing for existing projects by making exception for projects that were “substantially in progress” as of October 19, 2006. This paved the way for the Yankees and Mets to secure millions in additional tax-free bonds for their new stadiums.
Develop Don’t Destroy Brooklyn, Bruce Ratner's Barclays Center Arena Not Qualified for Tax-exempt Bonds Under Today's IRS Ruling, October 2008.
U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich, letter to Mayor Bloomberg on the use of federal tax-exempt financing for professional sports stadiums and the Subcomittee on Domestic Policy holds a hearing: Gaming the Tax Code: the New York Yankees and the City of New York Respond to Questions About the New Yankee Stadium, October 2008.
The lease agreement between the New York Yankees and the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation is regularly audited by the Office of the New York City Comptroller. They include:
- February 2009 - Audit Report On The New York Yankees Rental Credits For The First Quarter Of 2008 January 1 – March 31, 2008
- June 2009 - Audit Report on the New York Yankees Rental Credits for the Third Quarter of 2008
- April 2009 - Audit Report on the New York Yankees Rental Credits for the Second Quarter of 2008
- November 2008 - Comptroller finds Yankees owe city $11 million
Want to know who applied for a subsidy? Sign up for our "Subsidy Alert"
GJNY takes a close look at the proposed subsidy package--worth nearly $130 million--for Fresh Direct to relocate to the South Bronx. In early 2012, Fresh Direct started a bidding war between New York City and New Jersey officials when it threatened to leave its current home in Long Island City, Queens. Learn more about the subsidies, job promises and the efforts of residents to block the on-line grocery retailer's move to their waterfront.
As government aid begins to flow into areas devastated by Hurricane Sandy, Good Jobs New York will provide analysis and recommendations regarding these resources that promote a transparent and equitable allocation of funds that go to individuals and businesses that need it most.
Our database contains information on thousands of companies that received economic development subsidies in New York City.
Learn about major corporate giveaways to the financial industry, sports facilities and retail developments in New York City.
- The Great American Jobs Scam: Corporate Tax Dodging and the Myth of Job Creation by Greg LeRoy, executive director of Good Jobs First
- Corporate Subsidies and You: Where Do New Yorkers Fit In?
- Guide to Corporate Research by The Corporate Research Project
- Glossary of Terms by Good Jobs First