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Paterson: “I’d give my kingdom for some good revenue ideas!”

April 5, 2010

Only a few hundred million dollars separates the sides in state budget talks. They’ve apparently cut as much as they can stomach. They’ve swept every fund balance they can find. Every revenue estimate has been tweaked as much as legitimately possible. Now the Governor needs to find some extra cash to close the remaining gap and seal the deal with lawmakers. Well, NT2 is here for you, Guv. We’ve trolled our contacts in and out of government and come up with well over a billion dollars in relatively non-controversial recurring revenues for the state.

For example:

*       Electronic table games at racinos. All neighboring states have already authorized such games. ($30 million)

*       Primary source law.  This will improves the auditing capabilities at the state tax department. ($38 million.)

*       Quick Draw lottery restrictions.  Get rid of antiquated rules like the one that requires a daily “siesta” during which lottery tickets cannot be sold.  $74 million

*       Pension padding. Andrew Cuomo is right, and once he starts drilling down on this scam, there’ll be remarkable savings. ($100 million.)

*       Red light camera technology. Approve use of the technology in construction zones and school zones. It will improve safety and generate revenues through fines on violators. ($150 million.)

*       Aqueduct. Pick one of the legitimate bidders and be done with it. Duh! ($300 million)

*       Medicaid fraud.  Come on.  It’s a $52 billion a year program. The state could increase fraud recoveries by more than 1 percent simply by adding auditors to the Medicaid Inspector General’s Office.  ($500 million.)

There you go, Guv. Do it all or do some portion of it, and wrap up the budget quickly.

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