PSC President Barbara Bowen released this statement about the New York City Comptroller’s report on CUNY and the economy released Friday, March 12.
“Comptroller Stringer’s report reveals why investment in CUNY is key to rallying the state’s economy and tackling the racial and economic inequalities sharpened by the pandemic. This is the year to enact the visionary legislation gaining momentum in Albany: the New Deal for CUNY.
“The Comptroller found that CUNY graduates in New York State collectively earned $57 billion in 2019 and paid more than $4.2 billion in State income taxes. CUNY graduates earn tens of thousands of dollars more than comparable New Yorkers without a degree. And CUNY graduates make up 10 percent of the entire private-sector workforce in New York State.
“As lawmakers negotiate our state and city budgets, we urge them to consult Scott Stringer’s report and see that the economic return on investment for CUNY means a faster COVID recovery now and a stronger, more inclusive state economy. The meaning of the investment to individual lives goes beyond what can be measured in dollars.
“In the depth of the Great Depression, New York invested in three new CUNY colleges: Brooklyn College, Queens College and Lehman College. New York needs that vision now from state legislators in Albany and from our elected representatives in New York City. We thank the Comptroller for his report and call on lawmakers to act now on the New Deal for CUNY.”