For Immediate Release
April 9, 2022
ALBANY, NY – Today, Dr. Frederick E. Kowal, Ph.D, President of United University Professions (UUP), the nation’s largest higher education union, issued the following statement on the FY 2023 New York State Budget:
“UUP has long-advocated for leaders in Albany to reverse the decades-long disinvestment in SUNY that has weakened our higher education system and limited opportunities for students and employees. While there is more work to do, we applaud Governor Hochul and the Legislature for taking an important step that will allow SUNY to turn a corner by putting it on a path to a stronger future.
“We are grateful to members of the Legislature who tirelessly advocated for SUNY throughout the budget process, especially the delegations from Central New York, Brooklyn and Long Island. As a result of their hard work, the state will finally provide capital debt services to SUNY teaching hospitals that are a literal lifeline to so many historically underserved communities.
“In the coming years, SUNY will need consistent support, including direct state aid to campuses, to achieve Governor Hochul’s ambitious goals of strengthening the system. We will continue to fight for state funding that supports SUNY hospitals through the many programs outlined by the governor and Legislature. SUNY’s public teaching hospitals must be supported by state funding.”
In addition to support for SUNY, the budget agreement provided funding for frontline health care workers who have fought the COVID-19 pandemic, including thousands of UUP members.
Kowal continued, “After a long delay, many of our members will receive compensation for their heroic service during the COVID-19 pandemic. UUP welcomes the health care worker retention bonus and we will vigorously advocate for the appropriate titles to be designated for these payments.”
UUP will continue to work with the Governor’s office and members of the Legislature in the coming days as the budget deal is finalized and passed into law.