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Anti-Israel protesters caused $3 million in damage and security costs on the City College campus

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Anti-Israel criminals caused at least $3 million in damage and the need for costly additional security at City College’s taxpayer-funded campus in upper Manhattan during their violent protests there, officials say.

A protester who threw a flare that set fire to the roof of the City University of New York administration building caused $350,000 in damage alone, CUNY Chief Operating Officer Hector Batista said during recent testimony before the City Council.

Batista said the damage from the flare was particularly unfortunate because the City Council and the state had previously provided capital to install a new roof.

Anti-Israel criminals caused at least $3 million in damage and the need for costly additional security at the taxpayer-funded campus of City College in Upper Manhattan during their violent protests there. James Keivom

“It will cost more than $3 million – money that should go to our academic institution and boost our students,” said Assemblyman Eric Dinowitz (D-Bronx), chairman of the council’s Higher Education Committee, in response to Batista’s information.

“That is too bad. The purpose of CUNY is to uplift people, not tear down the institution,” he said, noting that the money could have been used to help students in science, technology and math programs, college prep programs or students who need childcare.

Dozens of protesters were arrested, including many outside agitators who were not students, during the unrest over Israel’s retaliatory response to Palestinian Hamas terrorists in Gaza.

Vandals at the school caused another $250,000 in damage by breaking windows, chairs and other furniture in buildings, Batista said.

Additionally, he reported more than $600,000 in damage caused by protesters who spray-painted video surveillance cameras to avoid detection.

Dinowitz asked if it was accurate to say there was more than $1 million in damage.

A protester who threw a flare that set fire to the roof of the City University of New York administration building caused $350,000 in damage alone, CUNY Chief Operating Officer Hector Batista said. Christopher Sadowski

Batista said the costs were much higher when you take into account the extra security measures put in place to control the protests.

For example, he said, CUNY has spent a significant amount of money to install more fencing around the City College campus to better secure it and prevent outsiders from entering.

“In total, I estimate we spent well over $3 million,” Battista said.

Batista said the damage from the flare was particularly unfortunate because the City Council and the state had previously provided capital to install a new roof. Getty Images

CUNY also entered into a $4 million contract with Security Services Corp. to provide additional security guards at City College and other campuses. It was unclear on Tuesday how much was withdrawn from that contract.

“We felt we needed additional support for our public safety officers,” CUNY Chancellor Felix Matos-Rodriguez explained.

Top CUNY leaders, who were shown internal videos of the vandals and destruction at City College and informed of the charges, said they were stunned by what they saw.

“People started fires and broke down doors. I could not believe my eyes. It was unbelievable,” a CUNY official told The Post.

New York Mayor Eric Adams’ executive budget proposes $1.29 billion for CUNY, largely to cover community college costs.

Dozens of protesters were arrested, including many outside agitators who were not students, during the unrest over Israel’s retaliatory response to Palestinian Hamas terrorists in Gaza. Getty Images

CUNY will receive approximately $6 billion additional from the state budget.

Chancellor Matos-Rodriguez said he only called in the NYPD during the protests when he felt it was necessary to protect the campus community and property.

“It is my responsibility to protect everyone on campus,” the chancellor said.

He said police were present at City College following the October 7 Hamas attack on Israel and the ongoing war in Gaza.

Batista said there were 175 “peaceful” protests at City College and only one of them got out of hand. He emphasized that a good balance had been found between freedom of expression and safety on campus.

The City College is not alone.

Police moved in and made numerous arrests at Columbia University after vandals smashed their way in and seized an academic building.




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