Roles of the state and the private university::Statutory college


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Roles of the state and the private university The statutory colleges are not state-run; they are operated by a 'contracted' university. In the present arrangement these universities are Cornell and Alfred. However, the five existing statutory colleges have been affiliated with SUNY since its inception in 1948 (but had no affiliation with any umbrella organization before 1948). Statutory college employees legally are employees of Cornell and Alfred Universities, not employees of SUNY.

The State Education Law does give the SUNY Board of Trustees the following authority: the Trustees must formally approve Cornell's and Alfred's appointment of the deans/unit heads of the statutory colleges, and control of the level of state funding for the statutory colleges resides with SUNY. (In addition to money allocated by SUNY, the colleges may be funded by tuition and fees; grants and contracts from state agencies; special state legislative funding; federal funding; and private donations.)

Additionally, the Education Law does mandate a consultatory role for SUNY: the statutory college should consult with SUNY when it sets tuition rates. SUNY also exercises a "general supervision" over the statutory colleges. However, Cornell and Alfred have interpreted this to mean that SUNY does not have the right to create novel policies for the statutory colleges that are not explicitly stated in the Education Law. If there is a conflict between Cornell or Alfred and SUNY in regard to a policy or action that SUNY is requiring from Cornell or Alfred, it must be resolved by negotiation between the two parties, although there is the legal right of court appeal by either party if agreement cannot be reached. However, this legal option has never been used.

The state finances the construction of buildings for the statutory college programs, and New York State owns those buildings as well as the land beneath those buildings. Such construction is managed by the NYS University Construction Fund rather than by Cornell or Alfred.<ref>NYS Education Law ยง 370 et seq.</ref>

Since statutory colleges at Cornell and Alfred receive significant state funding, tuition rates for statutory colleges and for endowed colleges are determined separately. 'In-state' residents attending a statutory college pay a separate reduced rate, in contrast to their 'out-of-state' counterparts' rates. When a student enrolled in a statutory college takes a class offered by an endowed college, the endowed college is reimbursed in a budget item called an "accessory instruction fee."<ref>{{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=news }}</ref> At times, statutory college students who take more than their allotted credit hours from endowed colleges were required to pay such fees themselves. Similarly, at various times, a student who matriculates into a statutory college and later transfers to an endowed college has been required to pay the difference in tuition upon the transfer.

Statutory college employees are covered by a separate pension plan and have separate pay scales and fringe benefits than their endowed college counterparts. Most of the statutory college buildings and facilities are owned by New York State.

In addition, SUNY performs a fiduciary role for dispersal of state funds to the statutory units. This may require periodic audits of the use of state funds within the private universities.

There is some debate about whether the statutory colleges are "public" or "private, nonprofit" entities. Legally, they are private and nonprofit; Cornell and Alfred Universities are private, nonprofit institutions, a status which extends to all of these universities' components, which are not separate corporations. Also, the employees of the statutory colleges, as currently affirmed by court rulings, are private, nonprofit employees. An analogy to this relationship is a private, nonprofit health agency which, under contract with a government, regularly receives government money to operate a research institute; the whole private, nonprofit agency (including the research institute) still remains a private, nonprofit entity. New York State's Education Law also states that the statutory colleges do not operate as "state agencies." The fact that each of the statutory colleges contains "New York State" in their official names does not alter the private nature of the statutory colleges; however, the importance of state funding is an important factor in the private vs. statutory unit relationship.

There are two state-supported university systems in New York State: the State University of New York (SUNY), which has degree-granting units throughout the state, and the City University of New York (CUNY), which only has degree-granting units in New York City. New York State's statutory colleges are partners of SUNY and have no affiliation with CUNY.

Summary of Statutory College Relationship
Factor Private U Public U NY Statutory Colleges SU-ESF
Lower Instate tuition No Yes Yes Yes
Separate Board of Trustees Yes Yes No Yes
Separate Dorms Yes Yes No Yes
Separate Intercollegiate Teams n/a n/a No Yes
State constructs and maintains facilities No Yes Yes Yes
Funded by annual state appropriations No Yes Yes Yes
Degree from host institution n/a n/a Yes Yes
Separate admission process Yes Yes Yes Yes
SUNY role in budget and selecting dean No Yes Yes Yes

Statutory college sections
Intro  At Cornell University  At Alfred University  At Syracuse University  Roles of the state and the private university  Other affiliations between New York State and private universities  Federal, statutory-college-type relationships within New York State  Outside New York State  International use of \"statutory college\" designator  External links  Notes  

Roles of the state and the private university
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