State Senate passes UB 2020 legislation; Moves strategic plan to create jobs in Western New York

 

The New York State Senate has passed UB 2020 legislation that supports the University at Buffalo’s strategic plan to encourage economic growth and create jobs in Western New York. 


State Senator Michael H. Ranzenhofer voted in favor of the legislation.


"As a graduate of SUNY Buffalo Law School, I understand the positive impact of UB and how critically important UB 2020 legislation is to our community.  UB 2020 will modernize and expand the University at Buffalo and, at the same time, create opportunities and provide research and technology for businesses and institutions.  The passage of UB 2020 today in the State Senate marks the first step to making this a reality. I was proud to co-sponsor and support this legislation. I have always been a believer in the University at Buffalo and after today, the entire New York State Senate is a believer too," said Ranzenhofer.


The legislation, entitled the “UB 2020 Flexibility and Economic Growth Act,” represents a commitment to the Western New York community and to improving public higher education.


The bill would give the University at Buffalo  the opportunity to create a tuition policy that is fair, responsible and predictable and enable the school to use tuition revenue to pursue the UB 2020 plan for academic excellence while at the same time protecting students’ access to high-quality education, especially for the state’s neediest students.
      
The bill proposes reforms to state law that will provide UB with the tools needed to move forward with the UB 2020 plan, a project that is expected to have a positive impact on Western
New York with the creation of thousands of jobs in the construction and higher education industries.


UB 2020 has earned widespread support throughout the region because of its potential to spur economic development and create jobs over the next several years.  The reforms are needed to provide students with access to world-class higher education that provides them the ability to achieve academic excellence.


Specifically, the bill allows the University at Buffalo to establish differential tuition rates starting with the 2011-2012 academic year.  The rates would be limited based on averages from other peer institutions and a semester undergraduate limit of $375 and annual graduate limit of 15%. The money raised from tuition increases would be used for financial aid programs at the University at Buffalo to ensure that no family making less than $60,000 a year would feel the effect of the tuition increase.


In addition, the bill provides maximum flexibility to the University at Buffalo for future capital projects on its three campuses by allowing capital project financing to proceed through campus-related nonprofit organizations, which would be allowed to procure financing through the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York.


The bill was sent to the Assembly.


###