Speaker Carl Heastie and Higher Education Committee Chair Deborah J. Glick today announced the Assembly’s State Fiscal Year (SFY) 2022-23 Budget makes investments to ensure higher education is accessible for all New York students by funding the State University of New York (SUNY) and City University of New York’s (CUNY) world class educational programs and providing $215 million for opportunity programs.
“The Assembly Majority remains dedicated to bringing affordable, quality education to New York students because we know how important higher education can be for a successful future,” said Speaker Heastie. “This year’s Assembly budget continues to make critical investments in SUNY, CUNY and opportunity programs to support as many students as possible on their path to a college education.”
“This budget reaffirms the Assembly Majority’s commitment to providing a higher education system that is accessible to every family,” said Assemblymember Glick. “This funding will ensure that a quality college education is affordable and accessible to all New Yorkers.”
SUNY and CUNY
The SFY 2022-23 Assembly Budget includes $48.8 million to SUNY and $59.6 million to CUNY to fully reimburse each system and eliminate the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) gap.
The Assembly Majority is committed to making college affordable for New York’s families. The spending plan provides $1.63 billion in expansion capital for both SUNY and CUNY for a five-year capital plan, an increase of $1.2 billion over the executive proposal. It also makes an additional investment of $200 million in state operating support funds each for SUNY and CUNY. The budget also includes $35 million over the executive proposal for a total of $88 million for each system to hire more full-time faculty. The Assembly proposal also provides funding to alleviate fees charged to students who owe a debt to SUNY.
Additionally, the Assembly plan would shift the cost of SUNY hospital debt service from the SUNY health service centers to the state, saving SUNY hospitals $68 million. The Assembly proposal provides $75 million in additional funding to support SUNY hospitals, as well.
The budget provides funding for SUNY-wide programs, including:
- $6.6 million for Graduate Diversity Fellowships;
- $2.7 million for Small Business Development Centers;
- $2.2 million for the SUNY Maritime Scholarship;
- $500,000 for the Cornell Veterinary School;
- $350,000 for the Hispanic Leadership Institute; and
- $200,000 for the SUNY Institute for Leadership, Diversity and Inclusion.
Other investments include $7 million to increase Ph.D. stipend levels at CUNY, a $750,000 increase for the CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies and $350,000 to reinstate the W. Haywood Burns Chair in Human and Civil Rights at CUNY Law School.
Additionally, the Assembly provides $15.6 million in start-up funds for childcare expansion at SUNY and CUNY.
Community colleges are a critical part of making higher education accessible to all New Yorkers. Due to declining enrollment, especially caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the SFY 2021-22 Budget enacted a 98 percent funding floor instead of funding on a solely per pupil basis to ensure that community colleges receive critical funding to educate their students. This year’s Assembly budget includes $416.4 million to maintain the funding floor at 100 percent. The Assembly also provides an additional $60 million increase each to SUNY and CUNY community colleges to begin to move toward the statutory state obligation of providing 40 percent of state support for community college base aid.
The Assembly also includes funding for the following programs:
- $2.5 million in funding for Accelerated Study and Associates Program (ASAP);
- $2.1 million to SUNY and $1.7 to CUNY community college child care centers; and
- $7.4 million in funding for Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE), an increase of $3 million including $1.5 million for CCE-NYC office and $1.5 million for CCE’s existing programs.
Nursing Programs and Mental Health Services
The COVID-19 pandemic shined a light on the need for qualified and dedicated medical professionals, as well as exacerbated the nursing shortage that New York was already facing. As part of the budget, the Assembly provides a $2.5 million increase to SUNY’s High Need Nursing Programs for a total of $4.2 million, and $2.5 million to CUNY’s expansion of nursing programs for a total of $4.5 million. Additionally, the Assembly includes a $2 million increase to the Patricia McGee Nursing Faculty Scholarship for a total of $5.9 million, to ensure that there are teachers and faculty to prepare New York State’s future nurses for successful careers.
The Assembly Majority also recognizes the toll that the pandemic took on mental health and provides funding to address SUNY and CUNY mental health services to ensure that they can provide necessary care to their students, faculty and staff. The spending plan includes a $28.8 million increase to both SUNY and CUNY mental health services for a total of $29.8 million each.
Also included is $2.7 million for the Social Worker Loan Forgiveness Program, an increase of $1 million from SFY 2021-22, and would expand eligibility for the program to individuals working at college campuses.
Grants and scholarships are crucial to students and their families as they consider higher education options. The Assembly 2022-23 spending plan provides a total of $204 million to increase the maximum TAP award by $1,405, bringing it from $5,665 to $7,070 over the next two years so that the maximum TAP award matches SUNY’s tuition. Additionally, the Assembly will raise the minimum TAP award from $500 to $1,000. The total cost of these proposals is estimated to be $109 million for this Academic Year (AY).
The Assembly plan would also expand TAP for part time students and restore TAP eligibility for incarcerated individuals.
The Assembly Majority is committed to ensuring every student in New York has access to higher education, regardless of their family situation. The Assembly’s budget proposal provides $215 million in funding for all opportunity programs, doubling the governor’s proposed increase. Funding for these programs includes:
- $51.2 million for Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP), a $4.3 million increase;
- $46.3 million for Educational Opportunity Program (EOP), a $3.9 million increase;
- $40.4 million for Search for Education, Elevation and Knowledge (SEEK), a $3.4 million increase;
- $26.4 million for Liberty Partnerships, a $2.3 million increase;
- $28.8 million for Science and Technology Entry Program (STEP), a $1.9 million increase;
- $17.3 million for Collegiate Science and Technology Program (CSTEP), a $1.4 million increase;
- $8.6 million for Foster Youth College Success Initiative, a $720,000 increase; and
- $1.9 million for College Discovery, a $161,800 increase.
The Assembly budget also provides a $2 million increase to help students with disabilities in college for a total funding of $4 million.
The spending plan maintains $35.1 million in Bundy Aid to independent colleges and universities, and provides $60 million for an additional round of the Higher Education Capital (HECap) Matching Grants Program, a $30 million increase over the governor's proposal.