Yesterday, New York Governor David Patterson called for an 11 percent decrease in the state’s budget. Not unexpectedly, the cuts will hit the State University of New York system hard:

Paterson’s order is especially hard on SUNY and CUNY, which are among the state’s biggest agencies and must find more dollars to cut.

The State University of New York will lose $90 million from its 2009-10 budget, while its city counterpart must shed $53 million, according to projections from Megna’s office.

The state’s Higher Education Services Corp., which provides financing for college students, must also slash $35.6 million from its budget.

“It will absolutely hurt the students,” said Francis Clark of the New York Public Interest Research Group.

SUNY spokesman David Henahan warned that, among other things, students could see larger classes, fewer course offerings and reductions in other services.

SUNY and the City University of New York both said it’s too soon to say whether tuition hikes will be needed.

Not a good day for a huge, vital institution.

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Jesse Singal

Jesse Singal is a former opinion writer for The Boston Globe and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. He is currently a master's student at Princeton's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Policy. Follow him on Twitter at @jessesingal.