SUNY Chancellor Says Plan Could Help State Get Out of Debt

September 27, 2013 Updated Apr 28, 2010 at 6:35 PM EDT

By Laura Gray

September 27, 2013 Updated Apr 28, 2010 at 6:35 PM EDT

BUFFALO, NY (WKBW) -- The Chancellor of SUNY reacting to Governor David Paterson's call for furloughs for state workers. Nancy Zimpher is in Buffalo today, announcing a new strategic plan that features six points. The six initiatives range from reducing energy consumption to creating on-campus diversity. Zimpher says the state budget cuts could affect that plan called "The Power of SUNY."

Zimpher says "The Power of SUNY" could help add jobs and revenue to the state. "SUNY is a growth industry," she adds. However, she says the failure to pass the Empower Act is threatening that growth.

The Public Education Empower Act was introduced by the Governor as part of the budget bill. The State Senate brought forward a resolution that meets some aspects of the act, but SUNY supporters are now calling on the legislature to discuss it and move the act forward. "If we can convince state leg we are a good investment, and we can grow revenue, some of that revenue will come back to the state universities of New York to help our students. That's the goal."

Nancy Zimpher says the state should invest money in SUNY to help get itself out of the deficit. Zimpher says the 9 billion dollar state deficit and half a million dollars in cuts to SUNY forces the school system to do more with less.
When it comes to those furloughs the Governor is talking about right now , Zimpher says SUNY has final say on how they manage the SUNY budget cuts and staffing. She will wait until the state budget passes before making a decision on any furloughs or staff cuts.