Medina Journal-Register — State Sen. George Maziarz, R-Newfane, released a statement Tuesday in which he adamantly opposed New York’s proposed prison-to-college proposal.
“For our state to demand that taxpayers foot the bill for the college education of prison inmates is a huge slap in the face to those families who are playing by the rules and struggling to make ends meet so they can have a brighter future,” he said. “These are the New Yorkers who should enjoy greater opportunities to attend college.”
Maziarz noted that thousands of New Yorkers work long hours and in the current economy must cut back on expenses and save as much as possible in order to “afford a college education for themselves or their children.”
The proposal to help inmates “incensed” the senator, who noted that many of his constituents and taxpayers had already contacted his office voicing their disapproval as well.
“The whole notion of rewarding bad behavior is completely backwards,” he said. “It should be ‘do the crime, do the time,’ not ‘do the crime, earn a degree.’ It is simply beyond belief to give criminals a competitive edge in the job market over law-abiding New Yorkers who forgo college because of the high cost.”
Maziarz added that the state has yet to mention how much the proposed prison-to-college program would cost. He added that “if the Governor thinks the state can afford this, I have a million and one other ideas for how we can use taxpayer dollars more effectively—starting with economic development, job creation, and tax relief.”