December 10, 2018

Webster offers $5,000 to cash-strapped SGA

Student organizations will be able to request funds after administration made money available to the Student Government Association for the remainder of the semester. SGA is now eligible to apply for a $5,000 addition to the 2014 budget.

Dean of Students Ted Hoef and Assistant Provost for Student Affairs and Athletics Paul Carney presented on SGA’s Allocation fund and student activities fee at the Administration’s Response. In February, SGA announced a 51 percent budget cut for all student organizations due to funds running dry.

“If requested by SGA, there is that assistance there to help, and then also administrative assistance to help SGA with strategy to prioritize funding for clubs,” Hoef said.

Hoef said the administration’s recommendation would alleviate some of the deduction’s impacts.

SGA decided on April 8 to create a proposal that would create an appeal process for clubs that have run out of money. The proposal came as a result of SGA trying be more fiscally responsible.

SGA President Katie Maxwell said she was not sure if SGA would place a cap on the amount of funds an organizations would be able to petition for. She said funding would be decided on a basis of need and only for those who had exhausted their funds.

“We’re also going to be making sure the budget committee not necessarily tightens regulations, but just that we’re more fiscally responsible with how we’re spending the allocated funds,” Maxwell said. “It’s not just our funding or one organization’s funding. It’s as a whole how we work together and how we divvy up funds.”

Video Game Club Treasurer Evan Luberda said he believed SGA should take the full $5,000 available to aid clubs who have been requesting funds throughout the semester.

In a February interview with The Journal, Director of Student Activities Jennifer Stewart said the allocation to SGA from the university has remained roughly the same since 2004. The money is split up between the programming pool, student grant fund and the readership program. SGA divides leftover funds between student organizations. The deductions only affect the student organization budget line.

At the end of each academic year, unspent student organization funds would rollover to the next year in a “bubble.” Stewart said the bubble was spent down until this semester it no longer existed.

Maxwell said requesting the full $5,000 would only be for immediate needs. She said the funds would not be requested to recreate SGA’s former allocation “bubble.”

“I don’t foresee any student organizations needing the funds right now. They’re there if they need them, but for the most part things have gone pretty well this semester,” Maxwell said.

Hoef said the SGA allocation would be raised by three percent in the fall.

Maxwell said she was happy with the response from the administration.

“Overall, I think the administration was great with their responses to the issues that were brought forward,” Maxwell said. “I think Provost Schuster made an excellent point that we’ve gotten more efficient with our communication.”

Maxwell said some of the responses at Delegates’ Agenda may have seemed less in-depth because SGA worked with the administration to resolve issues.

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