SG discusses $14.7 million 2014-15 A&S budget

By Wes Higgins, ASST. NEWS EDITOR
On April 2, 2014

 

The Student Government (SG) Senate will likely vote on the 2014-15 Activity and Service (A&S) budget next week after discussing the allocation of close to $14.7 million in student-paid fees Tuesday night.

Compared to the 2013-14 budget, the proposal would increase the allocation of funds by approximately $495,000.

The increase is based on $13 million in expected A&S revenue and $1.7 million in unallocated cash from this year’s remaining budget.

The two most notable changes in this year’s budget involved Career Services and the Dean for Students office payroll.

Career Services, which was previously solely funded by the university, is poised to receive $165,042 from A&S fees to fund additional services.

SG Senate President Shyam Patel said Career Services provides future graduates career counseling, internship opportunities and resume building workshops.

“We have students that want a degree is sociology, want a degree in biology but are unsure of where they want to go in their lives,” he said. “This will help you get a job.”

The other major budget change would reduce funding for the Dean for Students’ office from $371,316 to $74,703 — meaning student-paid fees would no longer fund the salary for the position of the Dean.

The position was previously funded by Educational and General revenue until SG decided to fund it through A&S last year after much debate and questioning whether student paid fees should fund an administrative position.

A&S fee allocation guidelines, however, state there is a one-year probationary period for any new position funded, during which SG may remove the position from A&S support.

Patel said he hopes the senators review the budget in case any objections or clarifications are needed during next week’s meeting. This year’s proposal contains more detailed oversight as to where the budget is allocated, he said.

“In years past, we would say ‘Hey, organization X, this is how much we’re allocating for you,’” he said. “This year we’re trying to be as transparent as possible.”

Zein Kattih, chairwoman of the A&S fee recommendation committee, said the responsibility of allocating A&S fees is partially why the Senate exists.

“When you’re running for Senate, they tell you you’re going to allocating some $14 million,” she said. “This is kind of the main selling point.”

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