Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Statement from Comptroller Stringer, Council Members Cohen and Williams Re: Support for Governor’s Free Tuition Proposal

Statement from Comptroller Scott M. Stringer 

  “Making college tuition-free for working families will be a major step forward for our students, our city, and all of New York. College is a necessity in the 21st century, and if we are to compete as a city, we need to give everyone a fair shot to succeed. Access to higher education should be a right for all, not just a privilege for a few. This proposal is both the smart approach and the right thing to do. I applaud Governor Cuomo for taking on this critical issue.”

Statement from Council Member Andrew Cohen

   “I commend Governor Cuomo on today’s free tuition proposal.  City and State officials should be open to all options for putting CUNY and SUNY within the reach of middle-class families, including eliminating tuition altogether.  His proposed supplemental aid program would make college affordable for thousands of families throughout New York.  

“I support the goals of this proposal as I was a co-sponsor of legislation recently passed by the New York City Council, and signed into law by the Mayor, which will create a taskforce to examine ways to increase affordability at CUNY, including the feasibility of eliminating tuition.  Phased-in support to households over the next three years is a good start on reaching the goals we all share of making CUNY and SUNY affordable for current and future students in New York City and throughout the State.” 


  Council Member Jumaane D. Williams, Deputy Leader, and a Brooklyn College graduate, released the following statement after Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a proposal Tuesday morning to offer free tuition at state colleges to middle- and low-income New Yorkers. Under the plan, college students whose families earn less than $125,000 a year will receive free tuition for any city or state university in New York.

"I commend Governor Cuomo on his plan to offer free tuition to New York's families. A college education should not be a debt sentence for years to come. Given the economy and the slow growth of available jobs, it is irresponsible to saddle young adults with debt without a path to work their way out of it after graduation.

"There's a precedence for the Governor's move. The biggest expansion of the CUNY system was during the Great Depression because it was believed education would lift the country out of the recession. 

"It's time the Democratic party begin to adopt forward-thinking policies and truly be the enlightened party it purports itself to be."

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