State University of New York

skip breadcrumbs
All amounts are in dollars
Category Available
Change From
State Operations 7,228,162,500 7,387,471,000 159,308,500 311,747,000
Aid To Localities 465,669,825 434,186,000 -31,483,825 0
Capital Projects 4,138,766,000 591,965,000 -3,546,801,000 7,090,632,000
Total 11,832,598,325 8,413,622,000 -3,418,976,325 7,402,379,000

Full-Time Equivalent Positions (FTE)
Program 2008-09
Estimated FTEs
Estimated FTEs
FTE Change
All State University Colleges and Schools
    General Fund 24,130 24,130 0
    Special Revenue Funds - Federal 3 3 0
    Special Revenue Funds - Other 16,497 16,497 0
    Capital Projects Funds - Other 2 2 0
Total 40,632 40,632 0

Note: Most recent estimates as of 12/16/08.


Created in 1948, the State University of New York (SUNY) is the largest public university system in the nation with 64 campuses offering a complete range of academic, professional and vocational programs. The State University system is uniquely positioned to provide New Yorkers with access to quality postsecondary educational programs in all regions of the State.

Budget Highlights

The Executive Budget recommends $8.4 billion All Funds ($2.8 billion General Fund and $5.6 billion Other Funds) for the State University of New York. The Budget includes General Fund growth in personal service costs (as a result of collective bargaining contracts), non-personal services and fringe benefits; General Fund decreases associated with tuition offset and community college base aid and other program reductions; Other Fund changes associated primarily with revenue from tuition rate increases; and the reappropriation of a $4.1 billion multi-year capital program in 2008-09.

Major budget actions include:

  • Reduce General Fund Support to Reflect Additional Revenue from Increased State-Operated Campus Tuition Rates: The Executive Budget reflects recent actions by the SUNY Board of Trustees to increase annual resident tuition rates for all degree categories by 14 percent (resulting in a $620 increase in the undergraduate tuition rate, from $4,350 to $4,970) and annual non-resident tuition rates for all degree categories by 21 percent. The Executive Budget also assumes that tuition rates for resident graduate and first-professional students will be increased in 2009-10 to levels that are 21 percent above those charged for the fall 2008 semester. In a departure from the more than 30 year old practice of using 100 percent of revenue resulting from tuition increases to offset General Fund spending, SUNY will retain 20 percent of the revenue for increased investment. This budget action generates net General Fund savings of $132 million and campuses will retain $33 million.
  • Authorize Differential Tuition for Non-Resident Students: The Executive Budget would authorize the SUNY Board of Trustees to establish differential tuition rates for non-New York State resident students by individual campus and program. This change would enable campuses and/or individual campus programs with regional or national appeal to better capitalize on their success. Statutory language will require the SUNY Board to establish appropriate maximum percentage thresholds for non-resident students by campus and/or program to ensure continued access to eligible New York State resident students. The Executive Budget assumes that campuses will retain all incremental revenue generated as a result of this change.
  • Reduce Community College Base Aid: The Executive Budget recommends reducing base aid support for SUNY’s 30 community colleges by 10 percent. On average, support per full-time equivalent (FTE) student would decrease by $270, from $2,675 to $2,405. However, the Executive Budget distributes the reduction in a manner such that support for colleges with less than 3,000 FTE students would be reduced by $160, colleges with from 3,000 to 6,000 students would see a $230 reduction, and support for colleges with more than 6,000 students would be reduced by $300. This reflects the capacity of larger campuses, which have more diverse funding streams and greater economies of scale, to better manage such reductions. This budget action would generate General Fund savings of $46 million.
  • Reduce Subsidy for SUNY Hospitals: The Executive Budget includes $129 million for annual subsidy payments to SUNY’s hospitals at Brooklyn, Stony Brook and Syracuse. This reflects a $25 million reduction from the 2008-09 funding level. The subsidy payments recognize the additional costs that SUNY hospitals bear as State entities when compared to their private peers.
  • Reduce or Eliminate Support for Various University-wide Programs and Institutes: The Executive Budget recommends $23 million of savings associated with the reduction or elimination of various line item University-wide programs and institutes. Programs with State funding reduced by 15 percent include: the Empire Innovation Program, High Need and High Need Nursing Programs, Native American Program, Rockefeller Institute of Government (RIG) Operations, RIG Statistical Year Book, RIG Philip Weinberg Senior Fellowship, Charter Schools Institute Operations, University Computer Center, Educational Technology Initiative, Library Automation, Small Business Development Centers, University Telecommunications Network, Tuition Reimbursement, State University Student Tuition Assistance, Child Care Centers, Empire State Scholarships, Just for the Kids at the University at Albany, Graduate Diversity Fellowships, and the Office of Diversity and Educational Equity. Programs with State funding reduced by 50 percent include: the Multidisciplinary Center for Earthquake Engineering at the University at Buffalo, Non-doctoral Graduate Research Initiatives, Library Conservation and Preservation Research Institute on Addictions at the University at Buffalo, Sea Grant Institute at Stony Brook University, Two Year College Development, Stony Brook University/Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory/Brookhaven National Laboratory Research Alliance Planning Study, Academic Equipment Replacement, Development Centers for Business and Industry, New York Network, Strategic Partnership for Industrial Resurgence, Faculty Diversity Program, University-Wide Governance, and Student Computing Access. Programs with State funding recommended for elimination include: the Sportsmanship Institute at Cortland, Nanoscale Science and Engineering at the University at Albany, and the Appointments Program at SUNY Maritime.
  • Eliminate Support for the Neil D. Levin Institute: The Executive Budget recommends elimination of $3.1 million of General Fund operating support for the Neil D. Levin Institute. It is assumed that the Institute’s 45,000 square foot headquarters located on East 55th Street in Manhattan will be utilized for a suitable higher educational purpose. The building will retain the name of Neil D. Levin and, it is expected, that the SUNY Board of Trustees will take appropriate action to ensure that Mr. Levin’s service and sacrifice continues to be recognized.
  • Reduce General Fund Support to Reflect Positive Cash Flow in Revenue Generating Accounts: The Executive Budget assumes that $40 million of positive operating cash flows from SUNY’s General Income Fund Reimbursable account will be used as an offset to General Fund support.
  • Assess the SUNY Research Foundation for Use of University Facilities: The Executive Budget assumes that SUNY will require its Research Foundation to pay 10 percent ($7.8 million) of its indirect cost recoveries on Federal grants as partial reimbursement for using State-funded facilities, and reduces General Fund support by a commensurate amount.


The Executive Budget provides $7.2 billion to support the 29 State-operated campuses, central administration and University-wide programs. In addition to $2.2 billion in support from the General Fund, the University’s operating budget includes $5.0 billion in activities funded by other revenues. Revenue-generating entities and programs include: the three teaching hospitals at Brooklyn, Stony Brook and Syracuse; the Long Island Veterans’ Home (which is administered by the Stony Brook Health Science Center); dormitory operations; food services; and tuition-supported activities, including summer session and overseas academic studies.

2009-10 gross operating support for State-operated colleges and schools will total $3.5 billion, representing an increase of $103 million or 3 percent. Within this amount, taxpayer support will total nearly $2.2 billion, a decrease of $169 million or 7.1 percent. SUNY’s General Revenue Offset Account, the primary repository of tuition revenues, will total $1.28 billion, an increase of $232 million from 2008-09 levels attributable to $165 million in new revenues from tuition rate increases, $59 million from enrollment growth, and $7.8 million in indirect cost recoveries from the SUNY Research Foundation.

SUNY’s special revenue funding, exclusive of the General Revenue Offset Account, will total $3.2 billion, an increase of $4 million, including:

  • A decrease of $85 million for the Stabilization Account, for which appropriations have a two-year life and are, therefore, appropriated every other year;
  • An increase of $160 million for the SUNY hospitals, reflecting collectively bargained salary increases and support for their revenue-generating initiatives;
  • A decrease of $44 million for the State University Tuition Reimbursable Account (SUTRA), a net change reflecting the shift of appropriations to the General Revenue Offset account to accommodate revenue from enrollment growth, collective bargaining agreements and inflationary cost increases;
  • An increase of $94 million for the General Income Fund Reimbursable account (IFR), reflecting general inflationary costs, enrollment growth, and the $40 million in operating costs that will be supported in 2009-10 by positive cash flows in this account.
  • Additional inflationary adjustments of $10 million for the Dormitory IFR account.

For 2009-10, Federal appropriations totaling $299 million will support the Pell grant program and various other student financial aid programs.


The Executive Budget recommends a total of $165.7 million in General Fund support for the operations of the five statutory colleges at Cornell and Alfred universities. The four statutory colleges at Cornell (Agriculture and Life Sciences, Human Ecology, Veterinary Medicine, and Industrial and Labor Relations) would receive $99.8 million, a net increase of $3.3 million from 2008-09 appropriation levels, reflecting $14.4 million in increases from collective bargaining and inflation, offset by the continuation of $5.7 million in 2008-09 mid-year reductions allocated by the SUNY Board of Trustees, and 2009-10 funding reductions of $5.4 million. In addition, the Budget recommends $55 million to support the land grant mission of Cornell University, a $5 million decrease from 2008-09 appropriation levels, reflecting the continuation of 2008-09 mid-year reductions allocated by the SUNY Board. The College of Ceramics at Alfred University would receive $10.4 million, a $0.5 million net increase from 2008-09 appropriation levels, reflecting $1.7 million in increases from collective bargaining and inflation, offset by the continuation of $0.6 million in 2008-09 mid-year reductions allocated by the SUNY Board and 2009-10 funding reductions of $0.6 million.


The 2009-10 Executive Budget continues the appropriation structure adopted in 2001-02 for the SUNY hospitals. All hospital spending is appropriated in one account with the hospitals being responsible for direct payment of their fringe benefit and debt service costs. Under this appropriation structure, the SUNY hospitals will continue to be directly accountable for operating within their available revenues, with those revenues supplemented by a State subsidy amount.

The recommended 2009-10 State subsidy for the SUNY hospitals, which recognizes costs attributable to their State agency status, is decreased by $25 million, from $154 million to $129 million.


SUNY’s 30 community colleges have three basic funding sources: State support, local support, and tuition revenue. The Executive Budget recommends $430 million in State support, a net decrease of $28 million from 2008-09 funding levels. This change is attributable to an $18 million increase for additional enrollment, a decrease of $46 million resulting from the Executive Budget recommendation to reduce base operating aid by an average of $270 per student FTE (from $2,675 to $2,405) and the annualization of 2008-09 reductions in State support of categorical programs.


County cooperative extension associations – funded by State, county and Federal contributions – provide specialized information and assistance in community development, agricultural technology, 4-H youth development and consumer and family education. The Executive Budget recommends nearly $3.7 million in State support for this program.


The 2008-09 Enacted Budget provided SUNY with $4.1 billion in new capital appropriations, a major step in the implementation of a new, $6.3 billion multi-year capital plan for SUNY’s educational facilities, hospitals, residence halls and community colleges. The 2009-10 Executive Budget continues this commitment to the rehabilitation of SUNY’s educational facilities infrastructure. The second of five annual $550 million appropriations will continue to address the accumulated backlog of critical maintenance projects throughout the University system. The Executive Budget also includes $41 million for the State’s 50 percent share of capital projects for community college campuses that have secured local sponsor resolutions.

2009-10 Executive Budget — Agency Presentation
State University of New York (PDF)