Assemblywoman Lupardo to Meet with Binghamton University Students, Faculty and Staff

Will Discuss Proposed Tuition Increases, Withholding of TAP & Cuts in Opportunity Programs

BINGHAMTON – Assemblywoman Donna A. Lupardo (D-Endwell) will meet with students, faculty and staff at Binghamton University to brief them and receive feedback on the proposed tuition increase and withholding of TAP awards in Governor Pataki’s 2005-2006 Budget.

The proposed budget calls for a $500 tuition increase for SUNY and withholding 50 percent of TAP grants. In addition, Governor Pataki recommends eliminating the financial aid components of the state’s opportunity programs like EOP, HEOP, SEEK, and College Discovery.

A $950 tuition increase was adopted in 2002 and tuition has gone up $1,700 since Governor Pataki took office 10 years ago. Another increase, combined with withholding TAP awards and cutting opportunity programs, would make it even harder for students and families to afford a college education.

A study conducted by the New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG) last year found that SUNY students have been forced to pay a 150 percent increase in non-tuition fees during the past decade. In 2003 alone, fees increased by 6 percent without the proper aid to back it up. New York ranks 41 out of 50 in terms of annual percentage change in state support for higher education operating expenses for 2004 – 2005, according to new research from Illinois State University.

WHO: Donna A. Lupardo, Member of Assembly, 126th District
Darren Hearn, Project Coordinator for New York Public Interest Research Group
James Pogue, PhD, Director of the Educational Opportunity Program
Tom Sinclair, PhD, Director of the Masters of Public Administration Program
Darryl Wood, Chapter President of United University Professions

WHEN: 7:00pm, Thursday, March 3, 2005

WHERE: Binghamton University, Lecture Hall, Room 7