Created by the government, public authorities are legally separate entities that provide services to the public as well as to the State and local governments. Public authorities are generally self-supporting through their revenue-generating activities. However, the State and local governments do, in some cases, provide financial assistance and support for operating and other expenses. New Yorkers pay for public authorities in a variety of ways including rates, tolls, fees and, in some cases, taxes.
The fiscal stability of the State is related in part to the fiscal stability of certain public authorities closely related to the State. The State’s access with public credit markets could be impaired if certain public authorities closely associated to the State were to default on their obligations.
- In addition to issuing debt for their own purposes, public authorities issue debt for which the State provides the funds for repayment. The Enacted Budget for State Fiscal Year (SFY) 2015-16:
- increased bonding authorizations for 21 programs financed through State-Supported debt issued by public authorities;
- added new authorization for State-Supported borrowing through the Nonprofit Infrastructure Capital Investment Program; and
- provided for a net increase in these State-Supported bonding authorizations of approximately $7.4 billion, an increase of 13.6 percent over prior authorized levels.
- Public authorities and subsidiaries reported more than $57 billion in revenue and capital contributions in 2014.*
- Public authorities and subsidiaries reported making payments of nearly $12 billion pursuant to contracts in 2014.*
For more information, see Public Authorities.
*The data reported is submitted by public authorities through the Public Authorities Reporting Information System (PARIS). The data contained in PARIS and used in this section of the report is self-reported by the authorities and has not been verified by the Office of the State Comptroller. Not all authorities have complied with reporting requirements for 2014.