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2016 News Releases

February 8, 2016

Rudy Orozco
Tel. (212) 815-1538
Cell (646) 823-5934

DC 37 calls on Albany lawmakers to fully fund CUNY

Members of District Council 37/AFSCME, New York City’s largest union of municipal employees, traveled to Albany today to urge state legislators to Fully Fund the City University of New York.

In January, Gov. Cuomo dropped a bombshell on CUNY by declaring his intention to shift $485 million in funding obligations from the State of New York to the City.

For decades, the State has been CUNY’s single biggest funder, providing 46 percent of the system’s operating budget primarily for the four-year colleges.

Members attended a joint hearing before both the Assembly and Senate Higher Education Committee and the Assembly Ways and Means and Senate Finance Committee.

“For tens of thousands of New Yorkers, quality, affordable higher education offered by the City University of New York has, and continues to be, a path to upward mobility,” said DC 37 Executive Director Henry Garrido.

“That path is now being blocked by a proposed budget that would raise CUNY tuition by $300 a year, shift $485 million of the State’s share of CUNY funding to the City; and exclude CUNY Maintenance of Effort (MOE) dollars. This budget excludes CUNY employees from the $15- an-hour minimum wage hike the governor has proposed for other public employees. These employees go to work every day to create a first-rate education environment and have been without a contract since 2010. As it currently stands, the proposed budget essentially starves CUNY.”

District Council 37 is New York City's largest public employee union, with 125,000 members and 50,000 retirees.