The governor of New York has a new plan for the state university system.

Now the individual campuses will work extra hard on economic development in order to receive more money from the state. According to a press release from the State University of New York:

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and State University of New York (SUNY) Chancellor Dr. Nancy L. Zimpher today unveiled the NYSUNY 2020 Challenge Grant Program. Phase one of the program is worth up to $140 million dollars to the SUNY University Centers in Albany, Binghamton, Buffalo and Stony Brook.

The NYSUNY 2020 Challenge Grant Program will initially consist of $35 million in capital funding per school ($20 million administered by Empire State Development Corporation and $15 million from SUNY’s construction fund) for the four SUNY University Centers.

Basically it works like this. Since the SUNY system is supposed to be a “leading catalyst for job growth throughout the state” individual campuses will submit detailed economic plans to the state. In return, the state will give each school $35 million.

In order to get the money, schools will have to demonstrate community partnerships and plans to “contribute to regional revitalization.”

This is probably not a bad plan but over the last three years the state has cut funding for SUNY by $685 million. Giving back $140 million back might be nice but really spurring “regional revitalization” might require a little more money. [Image via]

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Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer