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NYSUNY 2020: More Letters, Less Money

Is this the new version of UB 2020? A challenge grant to the four research centers (Albany, Binghamton, Buffalo, Stony Brook)?

It’s called NYSUNY 2020—yes, that would spell New York State University of New York 2020—and the program is a heck of a lot different than the UB 2020 plan. According to Governor Cuomo, UB would have to “submit a plan that could be acted upon.”

Click here to read about the new program. It “will initially consist of $35 million in capital funding per school ($20 million administered by Empire State Development Corporation and $15 million from SUNY’s construction fund) for the four SUNY university centers.”

Click here to listen to an mp3 of the press conference introducing the plan.

No word yet on whether the western New York legislative delegation will continue to fight for UB 2020. The status of the highly anticipated UB 2020 summit—supposedly scheduled for this month—is also in doubt.

Sam Hoyt released this statement, in response to today’s announcement:

“I applaud Governor Cuomo and Chancellor Zimpher’s proposed NY SUNY 2020 initiative. It is consistent with the Governor’s message that creating world-class research universities in Buffalo, Stonybrook, Binghamton and Albany will result in significant economic development and job creation in each of these regions. The University at Buffalo and Western New York have led the way on this issue and under the leadership of President Tripathi, this new proposal should allow UB to immediately begin its phased-in approach to the UB 2020 vision. This newly announced NY SUNY 2020 plan will also allow each university center to include predictable tuition increases that would remain on each individual campus in its application. With today’s news from the Governor, UB’s expansion on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus is much closer to becoming a reality than ever before.”

But even $35 million would be like $100 million less than the State University Construction Fund transferred to the Buffalo 2020 Development Corporation a couple of years ago for various purposes.

I think we can expect to hear a lot of grousing from the local unleash/unshackle business crowd, not to mention from regular schmoes on the street who think the new acronym (NYSUNY 2020) sounds plain silly.

Not so incidentally, whose idea was it to get the Empire State Development Corporation (ESDC) involved in this kind of plan anyway?

Click here for a reminder.


  • Peter A Reese

    This will never do. NYSUNY 2020 just doesn’t free up the SUNY Buffalo economic engine to do whatever it wants with massive public resources in the absence of accountability, transparency or oversight by elected officials. How backward, forcing public employees to tell us what they are going to do before handing out barrels of tax dollars. Where’s the fun in this?

    I miss John Simpson already.

  • Peter A Reese

    Just had a scary thought. What if SUNY Buffalo can’t compete with the other centers? After all, Albany already has what appears to be a very successful Nano Tech Complex. What if Binghamton runs off with all the money? Would that be an example of the Social Darwinism that John Simpson is so fond of?

  • Jim Holstun

    NYSUNY? Would you trust the geniuses who came up with this to boil a pot of water, much less handle millions of dollars?

    I think it was cute when Yosemite Sam used to refer to “female women.” But this isn’t cute. This is just sad.

  • 2 and a 1/2 campus

    Deathstar U. has been pirated by the non-nasaly downstaters !! Can’t we get more respect, just look at the big city cash being paid for a second-rate in house presidential hire !!