Binghamton University commends Governor Cuomo for his commitment to the SUNY System


“Rational tuition” and “tuition plus” to build access, strengthen academic and research opportunities at Binghamton University and reinvigorate the Southern Tier’s economy through innovation and job creation

BINGHAMTON, NY – Binghamton University President C. Peter Magrath, along with business and community leaders from across Southern Tier, applauded New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo for introducing visionary legislation which calls for a comprehensive, fair and predictable tuition policy for the State University of New York’s (SUNY) state-operated campuses. This initiative is an integral part of the NYSUNY2020 Challenge Grant Program.

The Governor’s legislation will allow students and families to plan for the cost of Binghamton University’s high-quality education in a predictable, fair and responsible manner. The legislation will provide predictable growth in tuition revenue to support the rising costs of higher education. The Governor’s bill calls for the implementation of a “rational tuition” plan that would allow SUNY’s State-operated campuses to increase tuition up to 5 percent per year, along with a “tuition plus” program permitting the four SUNY University Centers – including Binghamton University – to add an additional 3 percent.  These new tuition monies will be invested directly into strengthening Binghamton University’s academic and research mission, enabling greater access by increasing enrollment, hiring more faculty, and reducing time-to-degree.

Binghamton University will leverage the Governor’s NYSUNY2020 Challenge Grant program to spur job creation and economic growth throughout the Southern Tier of New York.  Binghamton University remains strongly committed to keeping access to a quality higher education affordable, and will set aside up 25 percent of the new tuition revenue for needy students and create a loan fund that will model the Federal Perkins Loan Program.

Link to Governor Cuomo’s press release

To see the bill:

To see the bill memo:


C. Peter Magrath, president, Binghamton University:

“We commend and thank Governor Cuomo for his commitment to the SUNY system. His visionary leadership in supporting a rational tuition and tuition plus program will give Binghamton University the tools and resources we need to provide the kind of quality educational experience that New Yorkers expect and deserve from us.

We are also proud to be a partner in the NYSUNY2020 initiative. Binghamton University has laid out an ambitious community oriented, community driven agenda that will enable us to leverage our academic excellence, cutting-edge research and economic development initiatives to jump-start a new era of powerful and productive returns to the Southern Tier and New York state.”

Edward Gaetano, executive director, Alliance for Manufacturing and Technology:

“Binghamton University contributes a great deal – economically and culturally to our area. The University supports ten percent of all jobs in Broome and Tioga counties. Faculty, staff and student employees earn nearly $200 million in direct wages, and pay nearly $25 million in property taxes each year. In addition, current students have a tremendous impact on businesses here as they spend more than $75 million during the academic year.

With hundred of events taking place each year, the University campus is the social, cultural and athletic nerve center of Greater Binghamton. And through lectures and programs, the University offers a wealth of continuing educational opportunities. A strong Binghamton University can be a boost to the local area.”

Glenn R. Small, regional president, M&T Bank:

“As a business leader, some predictability is essential for planning for the future, I think the current system is quite unfair to families who work their tails off to get their kids into college only to have the door slammed in their faces with an unexpected 10% tuition spike.

Many fear that raising college tuition in a predictable manner will prevent some people of a college education. That’s absurd. Binghamton University, and SUNY in general, has made amazing strides in opening up the door to the America Dream for thousands and thousands of disadvantaged students. Access is in its DNA. A rational tuition plan would just allow people to plan for it and spread the cost across the years of whacking one generation with it.”

Marc Newman, member, Newman Development Group:

“As a Binghamton resident and business owner, I see first-hand the economic impact that Binghamton University has on the Greater Binghamton area. In order to continue to have impact, Binghamton University needs a rational tuition policy that will allow students and families to plan for the cost of a college education, as well as give SUNY a sustainable revenue stream. A rational tuition plan – one that calls for modest increases while protecting students in need - would protect against fluctuating budget cuts and help grow and strengthen the entire system. 

For an even bigger impact, Binghamton and SUNY need a “tuition plus” program for the University Centers. On average it costs $6,000 more to educate a student attending one of the University Centers, compared to one of SUNY’s comprehensive institutions. Any funding plan for SUNY must take into account the cost differential between the mission of our comprehensive institutions and our University Centers. New Yorkers deserve a quality State University System that is both accessible and affordable.”

Patrick Brennan, county executive, Broome County:

“SUNY must have a rational tuition policy that will allow students to plan for tuition and that will provide New York’s public higher education system with a reliable revenue stream.   Binghamton University and SUNY is counting on this revenue to meet long-term objectives. In addition, given the significant cost differential between University Centers and other schools, Binghamton and the other three University Centers must have the “tuition plus” program that can help offset their increased costs to educate New York’s best and brightest.  The returns, both for the students and the state, are numerous.”

Richard D’Attilio, executive director, Broome County Industrial Development Agency:

“If Binghamton is to remain a key economic driver in our community, the institution and its students need to have a predictable tuition.  Sizable one-time leaps hurt not only the university, its students, and their families, but also many businesses and community members. 

A rational tuition policy helps more than students and their families.  It gives Binghamton University new opportunities to enhance its position as one of the top public institutions in the world.”

Lou Santoni, president and CEO, Greater Binghamton Chamber of Commerce:

“I have always known that BU was a great value, but was surprised to learn that SUNY is the most affordable university in the northwest and one of the most affordable in the country. I was even more surprised to learn that neither SUNY nor its individual institutions control the cost of tuition or are able to retain monies when tuition increases have been approved – but were placed in the general state budget. I think it’s time to charge a reasonable amount of tuition for the quality of education provided. That’s why I support the rational tuition plan.”

James J. McNamara, Jr., president and CEO, Endicott Interconnect Technologies, Inc.:

“We have seen Binghamton University not only achieve its academic mission and goals, but has become one of SUNY’s Center of Excellence, women and implemented the Center for Advanced Microelectronics Manufacturing (CAMM), their being a grounding partner with the University of Buffalo for the SUNY Entrepreneurial Innovation, Inc Accelerated Fund and the newly-established University BCET. Binghamton University is one of SUNY’s “Best.” It is an organization that is not status quo. But an organization with very strong leadership and a vision to drive economic opportunities for the betterment of Broome County, all its stakeholders and the State of New York.”

George Akel, chairman of the Industrial Development Agency board, and business leader, Binghamton Giant Markets, Inc.:

“I fully support allowing Binghamton University and the other SUNY University Centers to implement a rational tuition and tuition ‘plus’ policy. The University Centers, where cutting-edge research will put New Yorkers back to work is conducted, need a consistent revenue source that reflects their higher costs, and our students need to know that future tuition increases will be fair, predictable and responsible. No one can plan for the future with our current uncertainties regarding tuition.”

Randall Edouard, director, Educational Opportunity Program (EOP):

“Binghamton is committed to ensuring that all of our students - regardless of financial means - get the support they need to attend and succeed at the University. By setting aside 25 percent of the new tuition revenues, Binghamton will supplement the University's current aid and support programs assuring access for all eligible students. Close to 90 percent of students in the University's Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) are first generation college students and the Governor's rational tuition and tuition 'plus' program will make sure that these students and their families are able to take advantage of Binghamton University's premier educational opportunities."

Kathryn Grant Madigan, chair, Binghamton University Council:

“We believe the Governor's rational tuition and tuition 'plus' program will be crucial to the expansion of Binghamton University's academic mission. By delivering resources to the campus, a rational tuition and tuition 'plus' program will allow Binghamton University to hire the faculty we need to strengthen our curriculum, thereby easing access to classes as well as maintaining and enhancing Binghamton University's retention and graduation rates that are already among the highest in the nation.”

Kimberly Coleman, new student programs intern, Binghamton University; majoring in biological anthropology and psychology, graduating in 2012:

“The Governor’s tuition and tuition ‘plus’ program would allow my family and I to plan more effectively for my education, since there would no longer be random fluctuations in tuition. Being given the tuition increases upfront would ensure that I would be able to plan ahead and continue my studies at Binghamton University. The tuition ‘plus’ program would allow me (and others) to continue having the great experiences I have been having at BU - both academically and socially.”

Karl Bernhardsen, vice president for finance, Student Association, Binghamton University; majoring in English, expecting to graduate in 2012:

“In the past, the Student Association has advocated rational tuition policy, favoring predictable annual increases. While the Student Association is currently out of session and has not yet developed a stance on the policy at hand, I can say that I personally support an equitable five-year tuition plan that would allow our students and their families to plan ahead for college finances rather than facing unpredictable tuition increases.”  

Last Updated: 9/17/13