State Sen. DeFrancisco pushes for homeland security college in New York

New York State Senator John DeFrancisco (R-Syracuse) pushed Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Syracuse University in recent months to develop the first college focused on emergency management and homeland security on the Syracuse campus.

DeFrancisco, the chair of the New York Senate Finance Committee, said the idea for the school came from watching the university stand up its Institute for National Security and Counterterrorism. He said the homeland security school could be a joint effort between Syracuse and the State University of New York system, syracuse.com reports.

DeFrancisco said the proposal from the Senate resulted in the homeland security college being mentioned by Cuomo during his State of the State speech on January 8 in Albany.

"Believe it or not, there is no such college," Cuomo said, according to syracuse.com. "I believe this is a field that is only going to grow. Unfortunately, it's only going to get worse. And we want this college right here in the state of New York, training our people and training others from around the country."

DeFrancisco said he met with Cuomo's staff and SU officials about the potential for creating the joint campus in Syracuse. He acknowledged that lobbying for Syracuse as the site for the school is in the beginning stages, syracuse.com reports.

"There's a lot of discussion that have to take place to flush out how this is going to look," DeFrancisco said, according to syracuse.com. "There's no commitment from the governor that it's going to be Syracuse. But the proposal was generated from here. And it's up to us to put the final package together to make sure it's in Syracuse."