2020-21 Executive Budget Impact on UAlbany: Table of Contents
University at Albany’s Legislative Requests
Each year, the University at Albany requests additional operating and capital support from the New York State Legislature.
Below are the requests created in consultation with University's Executive Council. We will be calling on the UAlbany community to help advocate for these initiatives and restorations as there is considerable competition for state resources.
- Capital Support for the Former Albany High School (Schuyler) Building - $20 Million
The University at Albany is seeking capital funding to complete the conversion of the vacant Schuyler Building into the new home of UAlbany’s College of Engineering and Applied Sciences (CEAS). With the first phase of interior renovation set to begin this year, this funding will allow the University to complete this transformative project and fully occupy the building with more than 1,200 students, faculty and staff. Engineering enrollment continues to grow alongside our program offerings, and CEAS needs a finished, state-of-the-art home to ensure this remarkable growth continues. Through partnerships with the city, industry, K-12 educators, community colleges and other stakeholders, CEAS in the Schuyler Building will be a model for how campuses can leverage SUNY’s academic and research excellence to operate as nodes of economic, community and workforce development.
- NYSTAR Center of Excellence in Atmospheric and Environmental Predication and Innovation
Last year's Enacted Budget includes $250,000 in funding for UAlbany's Center of Excellence. Unfortunately, the Executive Budget eliminates this funding again and consolidates overall funding for the Centers of Excellence and Centers for Advanced Technology for recommended cost savings of approximately 20%. UAlbany’s Center has engaged with over 75 public and private partners, including IBM, GE, and ConEd, has active research relationships with 12 of those businesses, and has helped New York State drive over $2 million of economic impact. The Center also plays a key role in renewable energy and the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. Solar and wind will be leading sources of energy in New York and power generation depends on the unpredictability of weather. UAlbany’s Center builds solar and wind forecast models using artificial intelligence to help manage renewable power generation. For example, one of its partners, Clean Power Research, supports solar developers globally with irradiance models driven by the Center's efforts. We will advocate to restore last year's funding level and seek additional State support that will enable our Center to eventually reach parity with the other Centers of Excellence across the state that have been previously funded at $1 million.
- Predictable Tuition Plan
This year’s Executive Budget includes the Predictable Tuition and Maintenance of Effort (MOE) language. First enacted in 2017/18, this will be extended through 2024/25. This will allow for maximum $200/per annum resident undergraduate tuition rate increases at the State-operated campuses while also ensuring that year-to-year State Tax Support (inclusive of benefits) will remain static. Revenue from these increases will be used to support new classroom faculty, instruction, initiatives to improve student success, on-time completion, and the SUNY Tuition Credit.
- Critical Maintenance Funding for SUNY
Because nearly three quarters of the facilities at UAlbany are more than 40 years old, significant investment is urgently needed to address critical maintenance issues, including those affecting health and safety on our campus, such as the renovation of classrooms and other student-centered spaces. The Executive Budget recommends $550 million in critical maintenance funding, the same amount that was provided in last year’s Enacted Budget. Of the $550 million, $153.4 million is allocated for State-operated/statutory campuses and $396.6 million in a lump sum for priority critical maintenance projects. While its allocation is yet to be determined, priority will be given to projects that address life and safety concerns, core infrastructure in need of replacement and upgrading buildings and infrastructure to meet current codes and regulations, such as ADA. $9.72 million in critical maintenance funding is included in the budget for UAlbany, similar to last year. The University supports SUNY's request for $1 billion in capital funding support each of the next five years.