Items tagged with 'SUNY'
So, apparently, the University at Buffalo is making a move toward some sort of claim on being the "State University of New York" via its athletics program. The new floor design for its basketball arena makes the intention pretty clear. [Buffalo News] [UB Sports]
As state university systems go, New York is unusual in that it doesn't have one (or two) huge main universities a la Ohio or Michigan or Pennsylvania. Instead, there are the "flagship" or "university center" campuses -- Buffalo, Albany, Binghamton, and Stony Brook -- which always seem to be formally or informally angling to get to the head of the line. Which arrangement -- huge central campus, or distributed system -- is better is an interesting question (and probably hard to answer).
Anyway, New York's system keeps any one school from claiming to be the New York State University (as at least one university officially claims to be in its state). Maybe that's not a big deal functionally, but from a marketing standpoint the tag seems like it could be valuable, especially out of state -- even if it's just for sports. (Syracuse University has been trying to stake a claim in that space for years.)
Now UB's taking a shot at it, though in a limited way. Zooming out a bit, it looks like another move in the ongoing competition by SUNY schools to differentiate and highlight themselves via sports. (Tangental fact: Combined athletics spending at the four flagship SUNY schools increased more than 52 percent between 2003 and 2011. Details here.) [NYT 2009]
Interestingly, all this is perhaps to the chagrin of some people in Buffalo, who feel like the move is a slight toward the city. Hey, if anything, it does away with the awkward "university at" phrase. [UB Bull Run/SB Nation]
NYSU: This sort of talk isn't new. About 10 years ago, according to the Buffalo News' Bob DiCesare, Tom Golisano reportedly offered UB "unspecified millions" if the school changed its name to New York State University.
Empire State University: There's already an Empire State College, which specializes in distant learning and "non-traditional" college classes. It has offices in Saratoga Springs. There is not an Empire State University -- at least, outside comic books.
image: UB Athletics
Unfortunately, we didn't hear him drop the word "systemness" in there.
A former SUNY Research Foundation employee at Buffalo State charged almost $131,000 in person expenses a foundation credit card between 2007 and 2011, according to an audit released today by the Office of the State Comptroller. From the OSC press release:
DiNapoli's investigators and auditors found a senior SUNY Research Foundation official at Buffalo State College, Edgar H. Turkle III, used his foundation-provided credit card to personally enrich himself. A review of 424 of Turkle's credit card transactions for the 48-month period November 2007 through November 2011 found 348 purchases totaling $130,887 that were not business-related. Turkle charged the Research Foundation $22,225 for Buffalo Sabres hockey tickets and other personal expenses such as a birthday party for his wife, an Apple computer, iPad and iPhones, chocolates, and groceries. He also traveled to foreign countries, primarily in Asia, in 29 out of the 48 months reviewed, incurring $125,342 in related costs paid through travel vouchers that had no trip itineraries or agendas.
The report says Turkle told them he had been accompanying faculty on trips to Asia because, "I am the guy. No other way to put it." It also alleges that Turkle "inappropriately credited himself with leave time." Turkle was fired this past February, according to the report, and the Research Foundation and the OSC referred the matter to the Albany County DA's office.
The audit also alleges a range of other questionable financial practices at the RF -- including $665,356 spent on compensation for an employee who worked at central office in Albany for just 11 months, and was terminated because she was "not a good fit."
The SUNY system has a $1.3 billion annual economic impact on the Capital District, according to an analysis done by Rockefeller Institute at UAlbany and the University at Buffalo Regional Institute. It figures the SUNY system has a $19.8 billion impact on the state as a whole.
Here's a handful of facts, figures and bits for the Capital District that we pulled out of the report, in a few cases matched up with outside data...
SUNY released the outline of its new strategic plan today (here's the flip-through brochure). Overall, the plan aims to set up SUNY to "drive New York's economy" and revitalize communities. It includes six "big ideas":
+ A focus on entrepreneurialism, including mentoring and support for startups.
+ A "cradle to career" education pipeline. Initiatives include an effort to reduce new teacher attrition and more co-op jobs.
+ Focus on health care -- research and jobs.
+ Renewable energy technology
+ Increasing presence in local communities. Among the initiatives for this focus: more student volunteer work and "study abroad" opportunities within the state (well, Long Island is sort of like its own country).
Step one for the plan apparently was branding the university system to look like a biotech company (brochure cover on the right).
SUNY has 64 campuses and almost 465,000 students. About 18,000 of those students are at UAlbany.
Washington Ave Y closing, track season at Saratoga threatened, little hope for on-time budget, police say teen party caused $200k in damage
The Washington Ave YMCA will close March 31, according to a letter dated March 11 from Capital District YMCA president David Brown. The letter cites the $400,000 annual loss from the Washington Ave location and calls the decision to close the branch "very painful and difficult." The Y has said the location has been losing money for the last two decades. [Save the Y Facebook] [TU] *
A state police report on the fatal police car crash on Madison Ave in Albany last summer concludes that both drivers were at fault, according to the APD. The primary fault was laid with the civilian driver, who the report concludes failed to yield to the oncoming police car. The driver has said she didn't hear the car's siren (the report concluded the car's siren was on). The report says "secondary contributing factor" to the crash was the "failure to drive with reasonable care for all persons using the highway" on the part of APD officer Christopher Orth. [Troy Record] [WTEN] [TU] [Fox23]
Leaders of New York Thoroughbred Breeders Inc say "there will be no Saratoga race meet this summer" if that state doesn't find a way to get $15 million to NYRA -- either by fixing the bankrupt NYC OTB or finding a new winning bidder for the Aqueduct racino contract. Saratoga business owners are anxiously watching the situation. [NYTB] [TU] [WTEN]
Potential bidders for the Aqueduct racino apparently believe that the contract is step towards the legalization of casino gambling in New York State. [NYT]
State police say a man pulled over for driving the wrong way on 787 Saturday afternoon had a blood alcohol level almost three times the legal limit. [WNYT] [YNN] CapNews9 is now YNN
Bruno trial focuses on disclosure forms, progress -- or not -- on state budget gap, contractor dies on dredging project, the crow wars continue
Joe Bruno Trial: Much of the testimony yesterday focused on how Bruno's financial disclosure forms had been compiled. Ken Riddett, the former counsel to the Senate majority, testified that state senators were instructed to hand deliver their financial disclosure forms because of "concerns with federal mail fraud statutes." Also: Bruno's former executive assistant continued her testimony yesterday. She recounted the time Bruno sent her to the bank to get a $1000 bill for his wife -- and she says Bruno got "very angry" with her when she returned with ten $100 bills instead. [NYT] [TU] [Troy Record]
What's the state of discussions on how to close the state's budget gap? It depends on whom you ask -- though count David Paterson as one who's not optimistic, calling the situation a "prelude to what will be continued unhappiness." The governor also said he wouldn't rule out state worker furloughs if a deficit deal doesn't come about. [Daily Politics] [TU] [NYO] [NYDN]
Amy Seyboth Tirador, the Colonie soldier who recently died in Iraq, was buried in Saratoga National Cemetery yesterday. About 300 people attended her funeral in Colonie. Military officials in Iraq told the TU via email yesterday that "we do not know if her death was accidental, a suicide or a homicide." Seyboth Tirador's family has said the soldier was shot in the back of the head. During the funeral yesterday her grandfather said, "Whoever did this crime, I hope they rot in hell." [WTEN] [Troy Record] [TU] [WNYT]
The state comptroller recently reported that SUNY's out-of-state tuition is cheaper than that of many other states -- and the system could increase its revenue by $340 million if it raised the cost of out-of-state students. That probably sounds good when the state digging through the couch cushions looking for cash.
Wait just a second, says the Rockefeller Institute's David Shaffer. He argues that New York may need those students more than those students need SUNY:
In the absence of strong, dynamic job growth, upstate's economy seems to be caught in a vicious circle -- people leave if there aren't enough job openings; and then declining population hurts economic growth even more.
What's all that got to do with tuition at the State University of New York?
Upstate's best hope for making up its loss of young people may well be the ability of its colleges and universities -- both public and independent -- to attract students from out of state. These colleges and universities are also our key resource for producing the highly educated workforce that a dynamic economy will need.
Shaffer argues that keeping out-of-state tuition low may allow New York to lure back the children of former New Yorkers who have left for states such as Virginia and North Carolina.
SUNY's new chancellor, Nancy Zimpher, has said one of her goals for the system is increasing out-of-state enrollment.
First H1N1 shots on the way, more concern about mercury near LaFarge, man accused of trying to force snot burger, Troy library district approved, reward increased for dog shooting info
Several hundred healthcare workers were at the Capitol yesterday protesting state regulations requiring them to get a flu shot. They said they're worried about having to serve as "guinea pigs" for the new flu shot against their will. Richard Daines, the state's health commissioner, says the H1N1 vaccine has been prepared the same way as the regular seasonal flu vaccine -- and healthcare worker vaccination is a matter of patient safety. [Troy Record] [CapNews9] [Fox23] [CBS6]
State wildlife pathologist Ward Stone reported yesterday that tests he performed on soil samples from the neighborhoods near the LaFarge cement plant in Ravena indicate elevated levels of mercury. Stone says much of the mercury is from the plant. (Previous studies have reported that the plant is one of the state's biggest emitters of mercury. Erin Brockovich was recently in Ravena on behalf of a law firm to talk with residents about mercury pollution.) Stone did not conduct the study as part of his job with the state -- and the DEC says it will review the results. [CapNews9] [Fox23] [TU] [WNYT] [TU]
Crews working on the Delaware Ave reconstruction project turned up what appears to be five coffins from the 19th century. Archaeologists will be checking out the site today. Jack McEneny says the coffins are probably left over from an old cemetery that was moved in 1910. [Fox23] [CapNews9] [TU]
Schenectady police say a man has been charged with child endangerment after an incident in which he allegedly tried to make his girlfriend's daughter eat a hamburger with his snot on it. [TU]
Man shot in head, mother and son defy bike-to-school ban, state investigating suspicious fires, odd math on state test, ghost cats
Troy police say a man was shot in the head Sunday morning during a fight (map). The man is expected to survive. Police say the man may not have been the target of the shot -- though neighbors say the man, who lived on the street, was fired at for taking pictures of the scrum. [TU] [Troy Record] [Fox23]
Albany police have arrested a Troy man for the August 30 Second Street murder. Police say there may have been a confrontation between the two men before the shooting. The APD says witnesses at the party where the shooting occurred were initially reluctant to cooperate with the investigation. [TU] [Troy Record] [Fox23]
A Troy City Hall inter-office memo warns of big tax increases in the city next year if it can't find a way to make budget cuts. [Troy Record]
The Saratoga mother and son who got in trouble for biking to school last spring defied the districts' no-biking-to-school rule by pedaling to the first day of class last week. [Saratogian]
No progress in state Senate, mid-year budget change could be necessary, alleged pharmacy robber nabbed, stimulating the sign economy, hunting for what's left of Henry Hudson
The state Senate had two more in-and-out sessions this past weekend. Negotiations are apparently going on behind the scenes. The big sticking point remains leadership of the chamber -- specifically Pedro Espada's role as president pro tem. David Paterson is reportedly telling Democrats they may just have to get over it. [Newsday] [Daily Politics] [Buffalo News] [NYDN]
State comptroller Tom DiNapoli says it's looking like the state will be short on money later this year -- and a mid-year budget adjustment will probably be necessary. Of course, the would be virtually impossible with the state Senate locked in its current mess. [NYDN]
A state audit of the Schenectady Metroplex Authority reports that the org isn't tracking whether its investment projects are meeting job creation targets and that it's leaving parking money on the table. The authority disputed many of the findings -- and said it's purposefully not charging for parking. [Daily Gazette] [TU]
Is it a coincidence that the owner of the construction company with a virtual lock on big projects in the City of Albany is BFF with the mayor and police chief? [TU]
UAlbany students say alleged "Craigslist killer" was nerdy and nice, Barnette rebuffs request for dismissed parking tickets, building inspector says he was fired over rec center, Potato Playground closes
UAlbany officials say there are no indications that Philip Markoff, the alleged "Craigslist killer," was involved in any criminal cases during his four years as an undergrad at the school (he graduated in 2007 with a degree in biology). One of Markoff's lab partners at UAlbany called him "a nerdy science lover." A person who says he was one of Markoff's best friends at UAlbany called him "a great guy" who was "an intellectual, nice, friendly guy." Though one of Markoff's lab partners at Boston U's school of medicine said Markoff had exhibited extreme mood swings and she was "not even remotely surprised" that he'd been charged with murder. [AP/Daily Gazette] [TU] [MSNBC] [Boston Globe]
Albany city treasurer Betty Barnette says she can't comply with the Common Council's request for copies of all the parking tickets dismissed in 2008 because doing so would violate HIPAA. Yep, the medical privacy law. Council president Shawn Morris said the explanation is "absurd." [TU]
Columbia Pictures is paid just $25 for the permit to rent I-787 and ramps to/from the ESP for the filming of that Angelina Jolie movie. The production company is also paying for costs associated with the necessary detours. A state official estimates the production will inject $500k into the local economy. [Daily Gazette] [TU]
Benzie Johnson, a resident of Pine Hills, says he's running for mayor of Albany. Johnson is a registered Democrat but says he'll be seeking nomination on another party's ticket -- he says he doesn't think any Democrat can beat Jerry Jennings in the primary. [TU] [CapNews9]
Common council pushes for ghost ticket investigation, new SUNY chancellor, pistol whippings in Center Square, official urges shopping and prayer, Brian Stratton hops a horse in Albany
Four members of the Albany common council say they want to pursue a full investigation of the city's "ghost ticket" scandal. Mayor Jerry Jennings says the city is correcting the problem and would rather see the state comptroller handle the audit. [TU] [Fox23]
The SUNY Board of Trustees is expected to name University of Cincinnati president Nancy Zimpher the next SUNY chancellor today. Zimpher has a reputation has a tough, effective leader. She says she'll open her tenure as chancellor by personally visiting all 64 of the SUNY campuses. [Newsday] [TU] [NYT]
In somewhat gubernatorial fashion, New York AG Andrew Cuomo was making the rounds yesterday in Albany to push for consolidation of the state's many and varied local governments. After meeting with the New York Conservative Party, one member said, "I think we've got a kinder, gentler Cuomo with this guy." [TU] [NYP]
The idea of a tax hike on households making $250,000 and up is gaining momentum in the state Legislature. A similar hike was passed last year in the Assembly and a bill will be introduced in the Senate today. [NYT]
Unemployment rate up over a year ago, Soares looks to crack down on DWI, Troy stores will be on Oprah, DiNicola has a brain tumor
The Capital Region's unemployment rate in October was 4.9 percent, up from 3.6 percent a year ago. [TU]
A Thanksgiving food bank in Schenectady says requests are up about 20 percent this year. [Daily Gazette]
Albany County DA David Soares says his office will be cracking down on drunk drivers and will push to seize the cars of DWI suspects. [TU]
The mayor of Rensselaer says the city will not be prepared to handle snow removal this winter after the city council voted down a plan to use state money to replace equipment damaged during summer flooding. The council president says the city hasn't adequately documented what was lost. [TU] [Troy Record]
Unions scoff at Paterson's suggestion, SUNY tuition increased proposed, cop accused of threatening to kill ex-wife, state holds back stem cell research funding
A trio of the state's most powerful public employee unions scoffed at David Paterson's suggestion that they might open their contracts for re-negotiation. A Paterson spokesman says "no area of state spending can be off the table." [AP/Newsday]
More than two dozen SUNY campus presidents have called for a 25 percent tuition increase ($1,090 tacked onto the present $4,350), half of which would be charged during the spring semester. SUNY's finance committee also approved a three percent cut in each campus's budget . [TU]
Schenectady mayor Brian Stratton approved the city council's 2009 budget, even though he called unachievable and irresponsible. The council had cut Stratton's proposed budget, which included a 2.9 percent tax increase, against his objections. The new budget does not include a tax increase. [Daily Gazette]
Primary election results, state police show off a bunch of weed, SUNY officials get swank stays for cheap, another horse sculpture vandalized in Saratoga
Paul Tonko won the Democratic primary yesterday for NY's 21st Congressional District (McNulty's seat). He'll face James Buhrmaster, who won the Republican primary, in November. Tracey Brooks was the runner-up to Tonko by about 3,000 votes -- she said "The glass ceiling got a little bit thinner today but not quite thin enough this time." Phil Steck finished third among Democrats and Darius Shahinfar fourth. [TU] [Daily Gazette] [Troy Record]
Roy McDonald won the Republic primary for Joe Bruno's state Senate seat. He'll face Mike Russo, who beat out Brian Premo in the Democratic primary. [Daily Gazette]
Incumbent Neil Breslin easily won the Democratic primary for the state Senate's 46th District. There are no Republicans up for that spot. [Daily Gazette]
Elections officials said local voter turnout yesterday was moderate. [TU]
Kaz, a company that makes vaporizers, says it will be closing its plant in Hudson and letting 300 people go. The company is outsourcing its manufacturing to another company with plants in Mexico. [TU]
No consensus on how to fix budget gap, NY officially in a recession, Amedore to run again, Guilderland principal put on leave, plastic bag ban proposed, parking harder to find in Saratoga
While most public officials seemed to applaud David Paterson for emphasizing the state's fiscal problems, there isn't consensus about how to cover the budget gap. [TU]
And one more thing about the state fiscal situation: Paterson's budget director says the state is officially in a recession. [Biz Review]
The chairman of the SUNY Board of Trustees says the state's financial problems are an opportunity for the university system to "secure a rational tuition policy." And by "rational tuition policy," he means being able to raise tuition regularly. [TU]
George Amedore has officially announced he's running for re-election in the 105th state Assembly District (the city of Schenectady and surrounding areas). The Extreme Makeover home builder, a Republican, replaced Paul Tonko, a Democrat, last year in a special election after Tonko left to head up NYSERDA. [TU]
The woman who accused Albany police of conducting a cavity search on her during a traffic stop earlier this year has been charged with lying about the incident. The woman's friends and family say the APD's story doesn't match up. [TU]
What's going on at Guilderland High School? First the "culture climate inquiry" that led to two popular teachers being re-assigned. And now the school's principal has been put on administrative leave after he allegedly made racist and homophobic comments. [TU]
An Albany Common Councilman has proposed a ban on plastic shopping bags in the city. [TU]
Security cameras recently installed at a soup kitchen in Troy have made some of the regulars nervous. The org that runs the kitchen says the cameras became necessary after attendees were seen passing something other than the salt at meals. [Troy Record]
The number of parking spaces in downtown Saratoga is decreasing -- and it doesn't look like a trend that's going to stop anytime soon. [Daily Gazette]
Three guys were arrested in Cohoes for trying to sell stolen manhole covers and sewer grids for "a lousy $54" at a scrap yard. [Troy Record]
Earthly Delights Natural Foods on Jay Street in Schenectady is closing. The store has been open since 1974. The owners say they can't compete with larger food stores. [Daily Gazette]