HUDSON VALLEY COMMUNITY COLLEGE BUDGET APPROVED BY COUNTY, MAINTAINING HIGH LEVEL OF SERVICES AND AVOIDING A TUITION INCREASE COUNTY EXECUTIVE STEVE MCLAUGHLIN PRAISES LEGISLATORS WHO SUPPORTED BUDGET, AND QUESTIONS PARTISAN VOTE ON COLLEGE BUDGET
An operating budget for Hudson Valley Community College was approved by the Rensselaer County Legislature at the July 12 legislative meeting, with County Executive Steve McLaughlin saying the spending plan is effective and demonstrates the county’s strong partnership with the college.
The college’s $91.9 million spending plan includes no tuition increase, which McLaughlin said is commendable given the challenging economic circumstances now emerging nationally.
“Rensselaer County is proud of our support and sponsorship of Hudson Valley Community College since the college was founded. The college has grown from a vocational school to one of the leading two-year colleges in America,” said McLaughlin.
“Holding the line on tuition is a solid move, and continues the mission of keeping education both excellent and affordable,” added McLaughlin.
The county’s sponsor contribution for 2022-2023 is at $5.4 million. The county provided increases to the sponsor contribution in 2021 and 2020, following an increase in 2017.
The budget was passed by a 13-6 vote at the July 12 legislative meeting. McLaughlin praised legislators who voted for the budget, but questioned why all members of the legislative minority voted in opposition. Members of the minority also made a motion to table consideration of the budget, which would have potentially disrupted the college’s fiscal year.
The vote came after a public hearing with college President Dr. Roger Ramsammy that had no speakers at the meeting, and a series of committee meetings on the college’s budget proposal.
“This is a budget that deserved unanimous support to show our strong and unified support for a college that has made great progress in the past few years. The college attracted a world class program for advanced manufacturing, has strengthened programs for technology and medicine and is an outstanding resource for training and education in the region. We believe more good news is on the way,” said McLaughlin.
“What we saw last night was an unfortunate attempt by Democrats to hijack the college’s budget process for no good reason. The college has been a good partner with the county and deserves better treatment. This was an unnecessary partisan move in an area that should be free from politics and devoted to education,” added McLaughlin.
“Hudson Valley is also going far and wide to promote college programs and attract new investment and students. A trip to Costa Rica has recently resulted in a partnership for electric car maintenance. A more recent trip to Israel is also expected to yield good results in the coming months,” said McLaughlin.