Opinion

Mobile, VR will top ‘smart’ 2018 tech trends

By MITCH MAIMAN // Technology has become such a pervasive part of our home and work life that for many of us, it’s hard to sort out the fads from the tech with lasting value. This will help: A few tech trends that defined 2017 – and will be developed even further in the coming year. Artificial intelligence and machine learning This area has been greatly hyped and has continued to get more advanced, with…


TCJA: Too soon to panic (but not to start planning)

By TIMOTHY McHALE and ED McWILLIAMS // Finally, after months of fanfare and blueprints (and endless requests from our managing partner, Ken Cerini, to put out content on what a potential Republican tax plan would mean for our clients), the House Ways and Means Committee has released the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. While previously released frameworks offered few details, the TCJA comes in at a robust 429 pages – worthy of a seismic shift…


Leibowitz: Congratulations, RGGI, now hit the gas

By HEATHER LEIBOWITZ // Officials and stakeholders from nine northeastern states gathered this week in Baltimore to discuss a new plan to cut pollution from power plants by another 30 percent by 2030 – an improvement of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, building on the RGGI’s success by further limiting pollution and investing more in energy efficiency and renewables. The nine states – New York, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont,…


Leibowitz: Greenhouse Gas plan needs more initiative

By HEATHER LEIBOWITZ // On Aug. 23, nine Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states announced a proposal to cut power plant pollution by at least 30 percent between 2021 and 2030, strengthening what is already the best regional clean-air and climate-protection program in the country, the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. But while states are moving in a positive direction, the proposal falls short of what’s needed to truly tackle the climate crisis. This program limits dangerous pollution…


For managers, a primer on dealing with the dog days

By KEN CERINI // During the winter, when it’s cold and dark, people don’t mind being indoors and getting work done. But in the summer, when the weather and the sunshine are calling, how do you keep your employees motivated and focused? I don’t know about you, but during the summer, I don’t want to be cooped up behind a desk any more than my staff does. The goal is to find ways to balance…


Leibowitz: New York poised to lead on renewables

By HEATHER LEIBOWITZ, ESQ. // Ten years of progress has positioned New York to take renewable energy to the next level. Since 2007, New York has seen a 6,548 percent increase in the amount of electricity it gets from the sun and a 473 percent increase in wind-power production, according to a new report released by Environment New York Research & Policy Center. Co-authored by The Frontier Group, the report also highlights advances in the…


Leadership lessons from the Seven Kingdoms

By KEN CERINI, CPA, and ETHAN DeABREU // Spoiler alert: If you haven’t seen Season 6 of HBO’s “Game of Thrones,” you may want to stop here. Eventually, Eddard Stark was bound to be correct. Winter is here. Everything is on the line. You have stared into the abyss, and you see that war and annihilation await. Who will lead you to an untimely demise? Who can lead you to salvation? You can ask the…


Watchdog: Pruitt all wet on critical Clean Water Rule

By HEATHER LEIBOWITZ, ESQ. // Today, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt proposed repealing the 2015 Clean Water Rule, which restored federal protections to half our nation’s streams and thousands of wetlands across the country. Repealing the Clean Water Rule turns the mission of the EPA on its head: Instead of safeguarding our drinking water, the Trump administration is proposing to stop protecting drinking water sources for more than 11 million New Yorkers. It defies common…


Innovating internally? Better prioritize your people

By STEVEN BLUE // The reason innovations fail is not because of technology. It’s never about the technology. Innovations fail because of people. The people who might employ a new technology may not be sold on it. Or they might be afraid of it. Or they might feel threatened by it. Welcome to the dark side of innovation. The biggest threat to a new innovation your company is trying to develop will be your own…


Watchdog: 100 days in, an environmental ‘disaster’

By HEATHER LEIBOWITZ, ESQ. // In his first 100 days, President Trump has taken dozens of actions that threaten clean air, clean water and treasured places. There is no question, President Trump is a disaster for our environment and public health. His actions will make our air and water dirtier, as well as ensure we experience the worst effects of climate change even more swiftly. The bottom line is: These rollbacks put the health of…


Productivity, in the age of telecommuting

By SHONA ST. ANGELO // Many companies across the country, such as Aetna and Dell, are allowing employees to work remotely. Employees save money normally spent on gas and transit costs, and save valuable hours normally spent commuting to an office. Telecommuting can also benefit employers, who can take advantage of savings from decreased occupancy costs and travel-expense reimbursements. Money saved can then be spent on customer acquisition and marketing, which will ultimately yield higher…


Fundraising innovation: Less risk in games of chance

By SEAN WILKINSON, CPA // Governor Andrew Cuomo proposes to remove the red tape restricting nonprofit organizations’ fundraising efforts through raffles and other games of chance. The FY2018 Executive Budget will update outdated bureaucratic laws that will increase the potential of charitable organizations searching for support. Organizations that depend on these revenue-generating streams will benefit tremendously in the years to come. For example, the American Legion, a veteran’s organization, currently raises money by selling pull-tabs,…


Local zoning? Could be an executive order for that

By MICHAEL SAHN and NICHOLAS CAPPADORA // President Trump has made it clear that his administration is dedicated to reducing and in some cases eliminating many areas of government regulation. These areas include health care, financial services, environmental regulation, education and energy. Will these anti-regulation efforts reach down to local land use and zoning regulations and policy? Most certainly. Local governments – counties, cities, towns and villages – have always had the primary jurisdiction to…


Tax controversy? You need a franchise QB

By TIM McHALE // With Super Bowl LI upon us, we have a great matchup between the Atlanta Falcons and the New England Patriots. One thing these two teams share in common is their superb quarterback play, featuring presumptive 2016 NFL MVP Matt Ryan and Tom Brady, who is already a four-time Super Bowl champion. Each of these players is currently playing to the level of a “franchise quarterback.” While the exact definition of a franchise…


You can chews how you save the planet

By JOHN KOMINICKI // Two tiny Silicon Valley companies have vowed to tame the Earth’s surging levels of atmospheric methane, one of the most potent greenhouse gases out there and 28 times more likely to cause global warming than carbon dioxide. Their goal: An all-vegetable burger that looks, cooks and tastes like ground meat. Sort of. Now, vegetarian takeout may not sound like much of a contribution to the clean air effort, what with the…