Thomas W. Carroll is president of the Empire Foundation for Policy Research, an independent public-policy research foundation, and CHANGE-NY, New York’s largest taxpayers organization, both of which he helped found in 1991.
Carroll also serves as executive director of A Better Choice (ABC), a private scholarship fund that offers scholarships to low-income children attending poorly performing inner-city schools. Launched in August 1996, the ABC program already has become one of the largest school-choice scholarship funds in the nation. A one-of-a-kind initiative in which the ABC program offered scholarships to the entire student body at Albany’s worst public school has been the subject of a cover story in Forbes magazine and Education Week.
Carroll helped develop George Pataki’s plan for a 25 percent cut in the state income tax, which was adopted in his first year in office as governor. After the 1994 election, Carroll was asked by the new governor to serve on his transition teams on the state budget and Medicaid spending.
In early 1995, Carroll took a leave from the Empire Foundation and CHANGE-NY to serve as the governor’s deputy director of regulatory reform for one year.
Because of Carroll’s efforts, state agencies now have to meet tougher standards before they can impose regulations on business, nonprofits and local governments.
Among other things, new regulations must pass a cost-benefit test and be based on sound scientific and economic data. While there, Carroll also coordinated a statewide review of existing regulations, which targeted regulations concerning welfare, insurance, health care, transporation, energy and workers compensation.
Before launching the Empire Foundation and CHANGE-NY, Carroll served as the principal economic and fiscal adviser to State Senator Joseph Bruno, now the majority leader of the New York Senate.
A graduate of the State University of New York at Albany, Carroll lives with his wife and son in upstate New York in Saratoga County.