More than 2,000 Binghamton alumni are members of the Think Binghamton advocacy network. Our current focus is on reducing state budget cuts to Binghamton University and on retaining tuition for educational purposes.
Right now, the state legislature is reviewing Gov. David A. Paterson’s 2009-10 budget plan. The plan recommends significant reductions to SUNY. The cuts are in addition to the $210 million in reductions this year. Binghamton University addressed its share of the 2008-09 cuts through a hiring freeze, delayed purchases, energy savings, and other efficiencies. Executing permanent reductions, however, will mean larger class sizes, fewer class sections and fewer full-time faculty and staff members because of hiring freezes and personnel reductions.
The legislature recently voted to retain 90 percent of this semester’s tuition increase to fill a hole in the 2008-09 fiscal year. Similarly, the governor’s budget reduction plan would retain 80 percent of next year’s $620 tuition increase for the state’s general fund. This represents an unfair tax on students and their families and we are currently advocating that the approved tuition increases be maintained for educational purposes.
Our advocacy efforts include a scheduled “Advocacy Day” in Albany and letter-writing campaigns. On March 3, more than 100 University supporters will travel to Albany to let state leaders know that we are counting on them to maintain an affordable, high-quality state university system for the long-term economic vitality of the state.
Since January, more than 2,700 University supporters have sent nearly 13,000 messages on the University’s behalf. The letters have emphasized the negative impact further budget cuts will have on students, the University, the region and the state.
Please take a moment to write to Gov. Paterson and New York legislators today asking them to maintain funding, if you have not already done so. Let them know that severe budget cuts will have a damaging effect on students and the University. You will find all the tools you need to send these messages at our Think Binghamton advocacy website
, including suggested letters, which you can modify, if you wish. Simply input your name and permanent address in the appropriate fields and the system will automatically address and e-mail the letters. It will take just a few minutes of your time. The more voices we have, the bigger difference we can make.