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Buffalo News Editorial Board Waffles?

Today, the Buffalo News runs this editorial acknowledging the failure of UB2020/PHEEIA legislation, tossing out another swipe at Sheldon Silver and Debra Glick in the process.

“For the past three years, the University at Buffalo did such a good job of enlisting the power structure of Western New York behind its UB 2020 program that every other Buffalo initiative was virtually forgotten…It was a losing strategy. You don’t find other areas of the state betting on one item and then going home empty-handed when the plan fails,” quoth the News.

Of course, the News was one of the loudest cheerleaders for the plan. Here’s a big list of other supporters, according to UB press services: “More than 30 business, labor, community and university groups have expressed their public support of PHEEIA and UB 2020. They include the Buffalo Niagara Partnership, Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, Amherst Chamber of Commerce and the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo; the City of Buffalo, Erie County, Niagara County and Town of Amherst; Building Trades and United Autoworkers; Kaleida Health, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Greatbatch Inc., the Buffalo News editorial board, Business First editorial board, the Board of Block Clubs, the Jeremiah Partnership and the Oishei Foundation; the UB Undergraduate Student Association, UB Faculty Senate, UB Alumni Association, UB Council, UB Parent Council and others.”

The Board of Block Clubs? What, they couldn’t get the Girl Scouts to support UB2020/PHEEIA? Maybe that’s because in a few years a lot of those Girl Scouts would benefit from an affordable college education—which was why SUNY was created in the first place.

Click here to read the one voice the News published that actually questioned the plan.

Click here to read why United University Professions opposed it.

  • Jordan

    You know who else stood against PHEEIA? Antoine Thompson.

    Looking forward to a future with no dissident voices in the State Senate to prevent university privatization, hydrofracking, and a dozen other issues that Thompson stood against…. thanks for your help, Artvoice!

  • “Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown, Assemblywoman Crystal Peoples-Stokes and state Sen. Antoine Thompson each expressed strong support for the plan to revitalize Buffalo’s East Side. And they implored members of the community to rally together to help legislators in Albany understand that passage of PHEEIA is critical to Western New York’s economic future.”


    This is a dissident voice?

  • Jim Holstun

    Ah, the Buffalo News finally discovers why John Simpson’s effort to further corporatize SUNY Buffalo (as it used to be known) might conflict a little with its duty to provide affordable and high quality public education. Way to go, guys! Now if only you could also

    –remember the stance you took earlier (B.N. A.D.D.: pray for a cure!)
    –realize that Sheldon Silver and Debra Glick are not Martians who parachuted into Albany, but people representatives responsive to the interests of New Yorkers.
    –discover that SUNY’s problems lie in that overstuffed program of welfare for the rich known as “the NYS Income Tax Code.”

    Tax the Rich, as Professor Mike Niman sagely advises. They’ll bawl like babies, but they’ll get over it.

  • Jay

    The Saturday morning before election date UB’s VP Marsha Henderson was on a Saturday morning real estate program lecturing the public on the benefits of UB 2020. I called her and asked if UB is going to spend $5 billion dollars and the money is not in the bank but will have to be borrowed what will the tuition be for middle class families who want to attend UB. I explained that I understood that the economically deprived would receive financial aid but what is the tuition be for middle class families. I have to admire VP Henderson, a former banking executive who should be familiar with financial decisions, she talked long, fast and evasively and never gave an answer. Evidently she did not want to give an estimate either. $5 billion is a lot of money and someone will have to repay it. I suspect a drastic increase in tuition is the answer. Obviously there are businessmen and women in this community who would like to end UB’s and SUNY’s obligation for affordable tuition for middle class families. Maybe our local leaders feel that UB’s tuition costs should contribute to the sky rocketing higher educational loan debt that now exceeds society’s consumer credit card debt.

  • John

    Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown, Assemblywoman Crystal Peoples-Stokes and state Sen. Antoine Thompson each expressed strong support for the plan and then decided against in private after talking to their keepers in Albany..

    After all, it might raise residents out of poverty which is the main industry in Buffalo.

  • Tony

    Thank God only certain people read this blog, or else more might get the idea that continual bureaucratization of education is actually a good idea. I trust John Simpson and his cronies ten times more than the people in Albany. I’m wondering when New Yorkers will stop relying on the government to fix this state and realize that individual ingenuity can get us somewhere.

    No, you guys are right; instead of trying something new, let’s keep telling our representatives to stand in the way of advancement and change.

  • Peter A Reese

    @Tony: Can you give us a few examples of how “John Simpson and his cronies”
    have used “individual ingenuity” to do something for UB or western New York?

    While you are at it, take a stab at this UB2020/PHEEIA exam:

    1) Have you read the bills?
    2) How will SUNY Buffalo be empowered to do something it cannot do now? Give examples.
    3) What will it cost me, the official NYS taxpayer?
    4) What are the deliverable items that I am getting for my money, what are the milestones, and what is the delivery schedule?
    5) What transparency and accountability mechanisms are included to make sure this doesn’t turn into another Bass Pro, Adelphia HQ, Nanodynamics or Bioinformatics fiasco?
    6) Why all the secrecy? See: Quigley v. U at B Foundation, Inc.
    7) What steps did SUNY Buffalo take to obtain public input into the design of this endeavor?
    8) Are you confusing support for SUNY Buffalo with buying into another boon doggle which is only designed to further advantage the local supper rich?

    Extra credit:
    a) What is the statutory mission of SUNY?
    b) What is the statutory mission of the UDC (Empire State Development Corporation)?
    c) Is UB2020 consistent with the activities of SUNY or the UDC?