State Senator James L. Seward joined City of Oneonta officials Monday to detail his legislation (S.4643) that would provide New York State aid to SUNY host communities to help offset public safety costs. Significant student populations present several public policy challenges for local governments, one of which is providing adequate public safety services to both students and the public while striking the appropriate balance between other municipal needs and available resources. In Oneonta, for example, students represent fifty-three percent of the city’s population and public safety services constitute forty-four percent of the city’s budget. Senator Seward’s legislation would provide “impact aid” to municipalities hosting four-year State University of New York (SUNY) residential schools, colleges, and universities.  Along with making this legislation a top priority for the next legislative session, Senator Seward has also called on Governor Cuomo to include the proposal in his 2016-17 executive budget. Companion legislation (A.6416) has been introduced in the state assembly by Assemblywoman Barbara Lifton.

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