Speaker Carl Heastie and Higher Education Committee Chair Deborah J. Glick today announced the approved State Fiscal Year (SFY) 2022-23 Budget includes funding critical for higher education programs that are accessible and affordable for New York students. The investments in the State University of New York (SUNY) and City University of New York (CUNY) ensure the systems can continue to provide world class educational programs. Additionally, this budget provides $203 million in funding for opportunity programs, which the Assembly Majority has fought for investments in and doubled since 2015.
“Since I became speaker in 2015 and announced the Higher Education Road to Success, New York has doubled its investments in opportunity programs that play a critical role in providing access to an affordable, quality higher education for all New York students,” said Speaker Heastie. “This year’s budget builds on our previous investments in higher education ensuring that students have the resources they need to complete their education and enter the workforce knowing they possess the skills necessary to build successful careers.”
“Education has always been the great equalizer. We have seen firsthand the importance of an educated workforce over the last few years,” said Assemblymember Glick. “This budget is a down payment to ensure our higher education sector can help New Yorkers and our economy fully recover from the economic damage caused by the pandemic. This is a good start to ensure that every student who desires to go to college will have an opportunity to pursue their goals.”
SUNY and CUNY
New York’s SUNY and CUNY systems are invaluable assets that provide an affordable, quality education to families throughout the state. The approved SFY 2022-23 Budget includes $48.8 million for SUNY and $59.6 million for CUNY to fully reimburse each system and accelerate the planned elimination of the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) gap by two years.
The final budget also makes investments so that SUNY and CUNY can continue to provide important educational programs to students. These investments include $60 million in state operating support funds for SUNY and $60 million for CUNY, as well as $106 million, $53 million each for SUNY and CUNY, to hire additional full-time faculty at four-year colleges and community colleges.
The Assembly Majority has long been dedicated to making college affordable. This budget also increases state support in operating revenue to raise the amount campuses receive for Excelsior Scholarship recipients by $13.7 million for SUNY state operated campuses, $2.1 million for SUNY community colleges and $2.8 for CUNY senior colleges, for a total of $18.6 million.
Additionally, the enacted budget provides $15.6 million in start-up funds to expand childcare to all SUNY and CUNY campuses.
The SFY 2022-23 Enacted Budget also includes the following capital investments for SUNY and CUNY:
- $225 million for SUNY and $170 million for CUNY in additional capital funding;
- $10 million for Educational Opportunity Centers; and
- $3 million for the CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies.
Many New Yorkers look to community colleges as an affordable, accessible option as they consider higher education. 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 budget includes $416.4 million to SUNY and $217.2 million to CUNY to increase the funding floor to 100 percent of the prior year funding.
The spending plan also includes funding for the following programs:
- $2.5 million in funding for Accelerated Study and Associates Program (ASAP);
- $2.1 million for SUNY and $1.7 million for CUNY for existing community college childcare centers; and
- $6.1 million in funding for Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE), an increase of $1.7 million which includes $500,000 for the CCE-NYC office and $1.2 million for CCE’s existing programs.
Nursing Programs and Mental Health Services
New York was facing a nursing shortage pre-pandemic that was exacerbated as we continue to deal with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Enacted 2022-23 Budget makes investments in nursing programs including $2.7 million for SUNY’s High Need Nursing Programs and $3 million for CUNY’s expansion of nursing programs, a $1 million increase for each of these programs. Additionally, this year’s budget provides $4 million, an increase of $2 million, for the Senator Patricia McGee Nursing Faculty Scholarship to ensure that there is qualified faculty to prepare New York State’s future nurses for successful careers.
The Assembly Majority recognizes the toll the COVID-19 pandemic took on mental health and that many people sought mental health services as a means of coping with difficult times. The enacted budget includes $2 million each for SUNY and CUNY mental health services for the systems to provide necessary care to students, faculty and staff.
Many New York students and families rely on grants and scholarships as they consider how to afford higher education options. The enacted budget includes $150 million to expand TAP eligibility to 75,000 additional part-time students and $5 million to restore TAP eligibility for incarcerated individuals.
Since the announcement of the Higher Education Road to Success in 2015, the Assembly Majority has helped to double investments in opportunity programs, so that every student has access to a quality education regardless of their family situation. The SFY 2022-23 Budget provides a total of $203 million for opportunity programs across the board, a $6 million increase above the executive’s proposal, and a $24 million over the SFY 2021-22 Budget. Funding for these programs includes:
- $48.3 million for Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP);
- $43.8 million for Educational Opportunity Program (EOP);
- $38.2 million for Search for Education, Elevation and Knowledge (SEEK);
- $25 million for Liberty Partnerships;
- $21.5 million for Science and Technology Entry Program (STEP);
- $16.3 million for Collegiate Science and Technology Program (CSTEP);
- $8.2 million for Foster Youth College Success Initiative; and
- $1.8 million for College Discovery.
The enacted budget maintains $35.1 million in Bundy Aid to independent colleges and universities, and provides $45 million for an additional round of the Higher Education Capital (HECap) Matching Grants Program, a $15 million increase.