2019-20 Legislative Priorities

A PDF version of the below can be found here.

  • Restore funding for the Higher Education Capital (“HECap”) Matching Grant Program at $30 million to ensure that New York’s colleges and universities can continue to provide world-class facilities for students and faculty.

    • HECap leverages private resources towards the development and construction of facilities needed to foster a world-class education at private, not-for-profit colleges and universities. For every dollar in state support, private colleges and universities must invest $3. Since the program’s inception in 2005, our campuses have exceeded the required campus match and have stimulated more than $1.1 billion in total economic activity creating more than 10,000 jobs in communities throughout New York. All HECap projects pay prevailing wage and adhere to ambitious M/WBE goals.

  • Allow students at private, not-for-profit colleges and universities to be eligible for the Master’s-in-Education scholarship. Focus the state’s financial and merit aid on the student and not the college or university she/he attends.  – A.2404 (Fahy)/ S.5985 (Breslin).

    • Although private, not-for-profit colleges confer 61 percent of the state’s bachelor’s and graduate education degrees, students at these colleges are NOT eligible to apply for the Master’s-in-Education Sholarship. New York students should be encouraged to go into teaching fields and free to choose the college or university that best meets their needs. They should not be discriminated against based on their college choice. The current year Budget includes $3 million for these scholarships but the state projects that only $989,000 will be expended due to lack of eligible applicants. Accordingly, expanding this program to students at private, not-for-profit colleges can be done at no additional cost to the state. Opening the program to all New York resident students will provide everyone with an equal shot at receiving financial aid and importantly will help to address teacher shortages.  

  • Reform the outdated GPA requirement for graduate education programs. – A.4538 (Glick)/ S.5410 (Sanders)

    • Eliminate the 3.0 GPA requirement for students applying to graduate programs in education. Teaching is the only profession in New York state where an individual is required to achieve a government-defined minimum undergraduate GPA as a condition for pursuing a career.  This arbitrary standard discriminates against students whose potential as a teacher should not be judged or defined by a single metric that lacks any empirical correlation to being an effective instructor.  

  • Reduce the cost of complying with JCOPE’s Reportable Business Relationship mandate by eliminating the need to report the hiring of SUNY and CUNY faculty. – A.8267 (D'Urso)/ S.6325 (Kaplan).

    • The existing laws governing Reportable Business Relationships are overly broad, thus diluting their effectiveness. SUNY and CUNY faculty who may also be employed as adjuncts on private, not-for-profit campuses are in no better position than a member of the general public to impact public policy in a way that would inure to their individual benefit or the benefit of the not-for-profit college that employs them. Yet not-for-profit colleges must still go through the expense of tracking these individuals and reporting them to JCOPE. This adds unnecessary compliance costs that are ultimately borne by students, while offering no discernable protection against unethical efforts to influence public policy.  

  • Allow students access to specific travel and accident insurance policies by amending the insurance law to recognize specific benefits for traveling students. – A.492 (Lifton)/S.6197 (Breslin)

    • Current insurance law does not give students access to specific travel and accident benefits. This legislation would allow campuses to purchase travel and accident insurance for their students who travel abroad, supplementing the existing comprehensive health insurance our students have. 

  • Provide tax incentives to encourage health care professionals to provide clinical training to students for whom such training is required. –​ ​​​​​​S.4033 (Stavisky)/A.3704 (Gunther).​​​​​​​

    • Eighty percent of colleges and universities across New York face difficulty in finding enough preceptors for their students. Preceptors are usually experienced registered nurses who offer guidance and mentorship to new nurses as they learn to navigate the professional environment. The most common challenge these colleges and universities face is a “lack of interest by practitioners” in taking on the role of a preceptor. A tax credit will incentivize clinicians to participate without additional costs falling on students.