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New York State 2015 - 2016 Budget Email Campaign

The Governor’s State of the State and Executive Budget were simultaneously presented on January 21st. Highlights of the Executive Budget affecting CUNY include the following:

  • ● The senior college received an increase of $70.7 million. $60.8 million of this amount is tuition revenue. $12 million in increased funding has been proposed for the senior colleges for completion of college performance improvement plans. These plans would serve as the basis for performance funding allocations in future years. These plans would include goals to improve access, completion rates, academic and post-graduation success, research potential and community engagement. Ten percent of senior college and community college state funds would be held in reserve the State until the plans are submitted. Moreover, community colleges did not receive additional funds to implement the plans.
  • ● Community college based aid remained flat and reflected no increase. The University is requesting a $250 per FTE increase.
  • ●  Elimination of funding from $1.12 million for SEEK and $1 million for the Joseph S. Murphy Institute.
  • ● The Executive Budget does not provide any funding for mandatory costs, including fringe benefits and collective bargaining.
  • ● ASAP funding of $2.1 million was eliminated
  • ● Child care was reduced by $500,000 and the College Discovery Program by $26,900.
  • ● $1 million is provided for community school grants. This program includes two $500,000 grants for two community colleges to participate. The goal of the program is to bring healthcare to campuses, assist students with transportation, provide additional resources for child/elder care, and augment existing academic and career development supports to improve retention and graduation rates.
  • ● The Executive Budget includes funding and language for the DREAM Act to allow undocumented students to apply for state tuition assistance.
  • ● On the capital side, CUNY received $216 in new appropriation dollars. $103 million in senior college critical maintenance, $21 million in capital matching appropriations for community colleges receiving funding from the City of New York, $55 million for CUNY2020 Challenge Grants and 37 million for operating expenses related to the capital program.


CUNY’s State Budget Priorities proposed for inclusion in the finalized State budget include the following:

  • ▪ Faculty and Staff Mandatory Costs - $32.9 million
    The University’s fringe benefits, mandatory costs and collective bargaining should be funded consistent with similar cost increases contained in the State’s financial plan.
  • ▪ Academic Excellence - $45.2 million
    CUNY is requesting increases of community college base aid ($17.2 million), Online education ($5 million), International Education ($3 million and support of the Advanced Science Research Center ($20 million).
  • ▪ Student Success Programs - $11 million
    An increase in student success initiatives such as collaborative programs($1.5million), library services( $2million) and career centers($2 million). In addition, more funding is being requested for veteran services($1 million), CUNY LEADS($1.5 million), Black Mail Initiative($2.5 million), and Single Stop(.5 million).
  • ▪ Legislative Restorations - $ 4.3 million
    The University is requesting restoration of legislative addition programs such as ASAP ($1.7 million), Child Care Centers($0.5 million) , the Joseph S. Murphy Institute($1 million) and the SEEK and College Discovery Programs ($1.1. million)
  • ▪ Capital Needs - $656 million for capital
  • ▪ Critical Maintenance - $231 million


Chancellor James B. Milliken Statement on the 2015-2016 Executive Budget
Fiscal Analysis of the 2015-2016 Executive Budget prepared by Vice-Chancellor for Budget and Finance, Matthew Sapienza
CUNY’s 2015-2016 State Operating Budget Priorities The Gold Sheet


The Senate and Assembly have passed their one house budget bills on March 12, 2015 and will be moving into the budget conference committee process. Highlights of the resolutions include the following:


The Assembly version provides $9 million in additional funds for personal service support and an increase of community college base aid in the amount of $4 million. In addition, there is a restoration of funds to the SEEK and CD programs and increases the allocation by $4 million. Child care was also restored and increased by $400,000. $500,000 was added to the CUNY LEADS program and the Joseph Murphy Institute. The Assembly also proposes to raise the maximum TAP award by $150. The ASAP program was increased by $800,000. It also provides $1 million for community school grants and $100,000 for summer bridge programs. The Assembly Budget also includes the DREAM Act to provide children of immigrants educational opportunities.


The Senate version provides for $12 million in personal service support and calls for payment of mandatory costs for the University. The Senate proposes a community college base aid increase of $8.3 million. It also would increase the maximum income eligibility for TAP from $80,000 to $100,000. It also restores funding to the Joseph Murphy Institute and increases the amount by $500,000. Additionally, $750,000 was added for One Stop Job Centers.

It is very important at this point in the budget process to keep up the pressure and let higher education budget conference committee members know about University priorities. At this point, increased funds are still needed for senior colleges, community college base aid and coverage of collective bargaining costs. Please send the letter below which will go to members of the leadership and higher education budget conference committee members. The budget is scheduled to be passed by April 1 so the time to act is NOW! Thank you for your support.


Budget Conference Committee letter

Veteran Letter
SEEK and College Discovery Letter
Child Care Letter
ADA TAP Reform Letter