This Comprehensive Annual Financial Report of the Comptroller for the Fiscal Year Ended June 30, 2001 with a General Fund surplus, as determined by generally
accepted accounting principles, for the 21st year in a row.
The city is on course toward FY2002 budget balance but faces budget gaps beginning with 2003 fiscal year. FY 2002 is projected to end with a $260 million surplus, which will help the FY 2003 budget, which has a budget deficit greater than $4.5 billion. Therefore, they must borrow from the NYCTFA, about $1.5 billion. The city also faces problems such as deteriorating city infrastructure, which leads to debt service growing at twice the rate of revenues. However, despite all efforts, the FY2006 budget gap can exceed $5.5 billon.
While fiscal year 2002 is certain to end with the budget in balance, fiscal year 2003 is not guaranteed to. The recession and the terrorist attacks left the city in a challenging financial condition. The Comptroller's
analysis reveals that the fiscal year 2003 gap has increased by an additional $1.1 billion, bringing the total deficit to more than $6 billion.
The Mayor's Executive Budget plan for the fiscal years of 2003 to 2006, analyzed by the Comptroller, has a structural imbalance. The City's revenue base is insufficient to support the proposed levels of spending, and the City faces budget gaps and large deficits.
Comprehensive Annual Financial Report of the Comptroller for the Fiscal Year Ended June 30, 2002 - Includes Comptroller's Letter of Transmittal, independent Auditors' Report,
Fund financial Statements, General Fund Schedules, and other schedules.
Despite a projected gap of $1.1 billion in FY 2003, it appears that the City will end the current FY in balance. The budget stabilization account (BSA) and the general reserve will provide the City with a comfortable cushion against any shortfalls in the budget. The outlook for FY 2004 and the outyears of the financial plan shows a lackluster stock market and the 9/11 attacks continue to take their toll on the City's fiscal condition. The City has devised a comprehensive gap-closing program to balance the budget in 2003 and 2004 and reduce the outyear gaps. The increased property tax rate is expected to generate revenues of $838 million in FY 2003 , but this lower than expected increase has reduced the expected FY 2003 surplus roll. However, the Federal government needs to support the City's effort to overcome its fiscal difficulty and labor must work with the City to lower spending on personal services.
The City is likely to end FY 2003 with its budget in blaance and with a small surplus available to offset FY 2004 expenditures. Gap-closing actions implemented since November 2002 will reduce the FY 2004 deficit by $3.2 billion, however, the City still projects a $3.4 billion deficit. Analysis suggests that the problem could be $500 million larger than the City estimates. It is unlikely that a near-term resurgence in the local economy will help reduce next year's budget deficit. The Governor's recently proposed Executive Budget would increase the City's fiscal burdens rather than reduce them. If the proposals are to be enacted, they would increase the City's FY 2004 budget gap by over $800 million. If the Federal and State government refuse to offer meaningful assistance and City unions do not offer savings proposals, the City will be forced to adopt draconian budgetary measures.