Gov. Kathy Hochul is bringing down the hammer on the City University of New York.

She ordered a new, independent investigation into discrimination and antisemitism policies on Tuesday, tapping the highly respected former Chief Judge of the state, Jonathan Lippman, to run the review.

What You Need To Know

  • Gov. Kathy Hochul is ordering a new independent review of antisemitism and discrimination policies on across the CUNY campus system

  • Former Chief Judge of the state, Jonathan Lippman, will run the review. His employer, law firm Latham and Watkins, will cover the costs

  • The state will also open up $75 million in grant funding for law enforcement agencies and houses of worship needing beefed up protections against hate crimes

The probe is expected to last several months and will be funded by his white shoe law firm, Latham and Watkins, according to Hochul’s office.

It’s part of her continued response to uproar in the wake of the Israel-Hamas war.

“We will take on the antisemitism we have seen on college campuses. The problem didn’t begin with the weeks following the Oct. 7 attacks. It’s been growing on a number of campuses. It seemed most acutely in the City University of New York,” declared Hochul during a nearly 15-minute long address from her Midtown office.

The City Council held a hearing on widespread reports of antisemitism on CUNY campuses last year.

The 25-campus strong system then dedicated nearly $1 million toward protections, including an online portal tracking threats.

“We cannot allow any New Yorkers to live in fear for the day we are willing to accept that, is the day that our moral compass has broken and spun out of control,” she said.

Antisemitism is on full display at both public and private institutions.

Representatives from the FBI and Department of Homeland Security also testified about a rise in antisemitism nationwide before a Senate hearing on Tuesday.

FBI Director Christopher Wray decried the “historic” levels of discrimination.

Earlier this month, demonstrations on CUNY’s Brooklyn College showed a divided student body and Jewish students were barricaded in the library at private college Cooper Union last week during a pro-Palestinian rally.

“The way this fight goes at CUNY, in my opinion, is the way it’s gonna go throughout the rest of the country and that’s why it’s so important that we win that important here, that we understand what’s happening and we fix it, immediately,” said Jeffrey Lax, business department chair of Kingsborough Community College.

Hochul will also open up $75 million in grant funding for law enforcement agencies and houses of worship needing beefed up protections against hate crimes.

And state police are expanding their watch of hate speech on social media.

New York’s newest game plan follows Hochul’s meeting with Jewish students at Cornell University after online death threats were posted, targeting the Ivy League’s Jewish population.

On Tuesday, law enforcement apprehended a suspect who has since been questioned by the state police.

“We should not have hate on our college campuses. Our college campuses should be producing young people who are going to lead our entire country hopefully,” Mayor Eric Adams said during a briefing Tuesday at City Hall.

Meanwhile CUNY said they will cooperate with Hochul’s order.

“As an institution of higher learning and one of the country’s most diverse universities, CUNY has taken many steps to combat hate, discrimination and intolerance in all forms, important work which we continue every day. We will cooperate with Judge Lippman’s review as we work to build on the progress we’ve made combating antisemitism across our campuses,” said CUNY spokesman Noah Gardy.