A news release from Gov. Andrew Cuomo chock full of jargony promises (Procurement Transformation, Real Estate Optimization, Technology Transformation, launching initiatives, etc.) says the state will save $600 million over five years by rooting out governmental waste.
As Jimmy at the Times-Union points out, the state doesn't use a quarter of the space it owns or leases.
The State University of New York is taking the clarion call and saying, yep, we're on it, gov.
"The ongoing ability of SUNY to meet our obligations to the people of New York demands tough choices," SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher said in a news release. "Inspired by the Governor's leadership, SUNY will continue to explore opportunities to share services responsibly and in ways that ultimately support our accessibility and the academic success of our students.”
Though the statement doesn't specifically address this, it's not that hard to read between the lines. SUNY has noted the state's dire fiscal constraints as it considers consolidating presidencies at several SUNY schools, including SUNIES Potsdam and Canton.
The blowback has been swift and severe, but SUNY has essentially said, Look, these colleges are about a 10 minute drive apart. They have a manageable number of students and though they have different academic missions, lots of colleges — Ohio State, for example — are just as multifaceted. So why do you need two presidents making six figures at each one of them?
The debate has still not been resolved. Lawmakers have drawn up bills that would prevent it, and SUNY has backtracked a bit, saying they'll study the issue further.
And, according to a wholly separate report from Jimmy, SUNY spox Morgan Hook may not be at SUNY to see the end. Fare thee well, captain.