Senator Patrick M. Gallivan (R,C,I – Elma) joined with the rest of the Western New York Legislative Delegation this morning at the University at Buffalo’s North campus to send a unified message to Governor Cuomo that the implementation of UB 2020, the University’s long term growth and development strategy, is the region’s and the delegation’s principle legislative concern.
Legislation sponsored by Gallivan and four of his Western New York Senate colleagues allowing for the implementation of UB 2020 through public education policy reforms was unveiled at the press conference this morning. A letter signed by the delegation urging the Governor to include the necessary provisions in his soon-to-be-released executive budget proposal was also released.
“UB 2020 is the most promising economic development initiative for Western New York in generations. Through enactment of this legislation, SUNY at Buffalo will have the tools necessary to implement its bold vision - a vision that invests in our region’s students, its neighborhoods, its infrastructure and its future. I hope Governor Cuomo is sincere in his commitment to the economic future of Western New York and look forward to his commitment to UB 2020 and SUNY,” said Gallivan.
The reforms sought by Gallivan and the delegation include:
• Allow the University at Buffalo to implement a rational tuition policy. This measure would differentiate between the SUNY system’s public research centers and its comprehensive colleges, while providing continuity for parents, students, and the schools in determining annual tuition.
• Permit the university to enter and execute public-private partnerships for land use agreements.
• Create a modern regulatory structure for the University at Buffalo, increasing its autonomy to self finance, generate funds, and allocate resources.
“These reforms are not radical ideas, but are policies already employed by many of our nation’s premier public research institutions” said Gallivan.
Estimates claim UB 2020 will create tens of thousands of jobs throughout Western New York; both within the university structure, and throughout the region. UB’s plans include large scale, neighborhood-defining construction projects and the University estimates the school’s economic impact will nearly double from $1.7 billion to $3 billion annually.