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Chancellor Zimpher on the Offensive


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Going right after the UUP




The legislation removes tuition from the state budget, allowing SUNY to expand enrollment and increase access to excellent education opportunities. It enables SUNY to engage in partnerships with the private sector, which means new revenue to support SUNY and the ability to create 2,000 faculty positions and a total of 10,000 jobs across the system -- along with 65,000 construction jobs for capital projects. The principles of collective bargaining and union worker rights are specifically protected. Finally, the legislation cuts the red tape that costs SUNY time and money and stifles economic activity. At the same time, it promotes transparency and accountability in our business transactions.


Unfortunately, some critics continue to defend an indefensible status quo, providing no alternative solutions -- only criticisms. In contrast, we understand the need to be proactive and strategic about the future. If current projections are accurate, there will be even less money to go around next year. Business as usual will be nothing short of disastrous.

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I love her...seriously!


She is exactly what this system needs, much like President Hall was exactly what we needed when he came aboard. She scoffs at the status quo...and isnt afraid to be vocal about it.

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I don't understand the UUP at all. This is a statement lifted directly from their website Savesuny.org


The proposal would clearly shift the burden of funding SUNY’s academic programs from the state to students and their families.


Uhhh....no crap. Isn't that the point. The State isn't funding SUNY any more. That's a fact. Didn't Philip say less than 15% of the operational funding comes from the State? This isn't going to magically increase anytime soon. So the UUP appears to be arguing that SUNY is fine the way it is with overcrowded classrooms and substandard teaching facilities?


I get the animosity towards differential tuition. I don't agree with it, but I understand it. I don't understand the opposition to the other parts of SUNY Flex though. They just don't seem logical to me.

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Are they (UUP) the only ones fighting SUNY Flex? I haven't seen/heard to much negative about it. Seems like most people are on board that this is what SUNY NEEDS.



Pretty much.


There are some politicians who have expressed concern about differential tuition, but I think that is a compromise point for Zimpher which can be solved by creating a tuition oversight committee that includes members of the SUNY Trustees and the High Ed Committees from both the Senate and Assembly.


The UUP was pretty much the only one against UB2020 also (except of course for the other SUNY centers who wanted in).

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Question: You said you were up at the state Capitol today (March 9) in support of the Public Higher Education Empowerment and Innovation Act. What kind of support does the act have from members of the Legislature? Zimpher: I think it’s mixed, in all honesty. What we’re working on is making sure that people not reach conclusions prematurely. Have you ever heard the phrase ‘If you need an answer today, it’s no’?


We’re really trying to have a very forthright conversation with the Legislature. Frankly, we’re trying to get the Legislature in the weeds, which is kind of an odd thing to say, because usually when you get into the weeds, you’re in trouble. But we’re in trouble if people stay at 30,000 feet and they just say, ‘We’re against leasing state property to private partnerships. We’re against you managing your tuition; that’s what we do.’


So we want to say, ‘Say more about that. Tell us exactly what you do and don’t like,’ so that we can respond and maybe have a more successful conversation. So today, we met with very key groups. We met with the upstate Democratic caucus. We met with the leadership of the Senate Higher Education Committee, which is (chaired by) Sen. (Toby Ann) Stavisky. We met with the chairperson of the Assembly Higher Education Committee, which is chaired by Assembly member Deborah Glick.


What was absolutely fascinating is that we had almost all of the SUNY presidents in the room, so before the meeting ever started, we did a round-robin, tell-us-who-you-are, and the sheer magnitude of the number of SUNY campuses sitting around the table in a big conference room in the Capitol building spoke mountains about the comprehensive nature of SUNY and the diversity of SUNY, because we had community colleges and UAlbany, you’re president was there, technical schools and the comprehensive colleges. So we’re working the agenda at a level of dialogue. I think we had good listening, and that, I think, was very promising.



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Campus Watch in today's T-U mentions a report requested by (and reflecting the views of) Zimpher about universities as economic engines in their communities.


This after the main story that UA is using "Education District" to refer to what most people call "the student ghetto".

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FWIW it appears the budget proposal put forward by the NYS Senate extends "flexibility" only to Buffalo and Stony Brook



Full text is here, starting at the bottom of p.26








It does in fact say that with regards to differential tuition and the public/private partnership provisions. Unbelievable.

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Looks like a de facto declaration of the flagship status to me.



The senate budget proposal does not make it a done deal, but it may put the Chancellor into an ambiguous negotiating position:

does she say "all or none" or take it as the starting point for an incremental approach?




The governor does not seem to be negotiating from a position of strength so who knows where this will go.

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