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Major Employers, Unions Announce Support for Empowerment Act

June 24, 2010

AlbanyState University of New York Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher today announced the support of 24 major corporations, associations, and the Building and Construction Trades Council for SUNY’s new strategic plan, The Power of SUNY, and the Public Higher Education Empowerment and Innovation Act.

In an open letter to the New York State Legislature, the employers and unions wrote that “If there were ever a time for New York State to embrace bold new ideas and creative solutions, it is this time, with this Chancellor and this SUNY.” A full copy of the letter is available here.

“The time for action for SUNY is now,” said Governor David A. Paterson. “The Public Higher Education Empowerment and Innovation Act will create jobs, reinvigorate our state’s economy, and allow our state university system to be nationally competitive – all at zero cost to taxpayers. The support of the business and labor community is further proof that public higher education can, and will, be the driver for a knowledge-based, 21st century economy.”

"We thank New York's top employers and labor unions for this strong message of support of the Empowerment Act and The Power of SUNY," said Chancellor Zimpher. "These leaders understand better than anyone that we need bold action to spark the state's economic recovery, and they recognize SUNY's capacity to drive innovation, growth and a better quality of life in our communities."

In addition to the New York Building and Construction Trades Council, the letter is signed by: BBL Construction Services, Center for Economic Growth, Central Hudson Energy Group, Columbia Development Companies, Delaware North Companies, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, First Niagara, Frank Murken Products, IBM Corporation, Independent Health, Kaleida Health, Eastman Kodak, Long Island Association, Long Island Contractors’ Association, MOOG, M&T Bank, Nassau-Suffolk Building Trades, New York State Business Council, The Pike Company, SEFCU, SIRGA Advanced Biopharma, WelchAllyn, and Xerox.

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