Weekly Radio Address: Diversifying NYC's Economy Helps Balance Budget
By NYC.gov - MAY. 06, 2012
The following is Mayor Bloomberg's weekly radio address as delivered on 1010 WINS News Radio for Sunday, May 6, 2012.
“Good Morning. This is Mayor Mike Bloomberg.
“The wide range of industries in our city that are creating new jobs is good news for all New Yorkers. It’s making our overall economy stronger and more stable. That’s precisely the reason why for 10 years we’ve worked so hard to diversify our economy, while also keeping City government’s finances on a solid footing. And the proposed City budget that we released last week, and which we’ll now work with Speaker Christine Quinn and her colleagues on the City Council to finalize, shows why those continue to be the right priorities for New York.
“The budget we’ve put forward, which will cover the 12-month period beginning July 1, can be balanced without raising City taxes. At the same time, it will allow us to maintain the strength of the NYPD and also increase support for public schools; the number of teachers will go up in the next school year. We’ll also be able to cover the increased social safety net costs produced by the lingering effects of the last, deep national recession.
“We’re able to do all that even though the uncertainties of the national and world economies caused profits on Wall Street – traditionally and still the largest industry in New York City – to slump during the final months of 2011. In fact, the profits of our financial services firms fell from $27.6 billion in 2010 to $7.7 billion in 2011.
“In the not-so-distant past, when our economy was more completely at the mercy of Wall Street’s ups and downs, that would have been very grim budget news. It’s certainly not good news now, either. But other sectors of our economy that we’ve done a lot to foster, including tourism, higher education, film and TV production, and our booming tech sector, are growing. The new jobs they’ve created help explain why New York City has recovered 180 percent of the private sector jobs lost since the last recession began, while the nation as a whole has gained back only about 40 percent. And these growing sectors of our city’s economy are generating additional tax revenue that’s offsetting some of the losses on Wall Street.
“Then there’s our continued sound handling of City government’s finances. During the last economic boom, we set aside surplus tax revenues rather than spend them all; we’re able to use money we saved then to balance our budget now. Then back in 2007, when the first warning signs of the national recession appeared on the horizon, we began directing City agencies to tighten their belts. We’ve maintained that fiscal discipline ever since. The cumulative result: More than $6 billion of annual savings for City government during the next fiscal year.
“That rigorous financial management of City government encourages further economic growth, too; it makes businesses more confident about New York’s future, and more willing to locate, invest, and create jobs here. The result: We’ve got a better balanced economy that’s also helping give us a balanced budget – and a brighter future.
“This is Mayor Mike Bloomberg. Thanks for listening.”