SGA senate approves $2.5 million budget

Published by , Author: Hannah Shumsky - Assistant News Editor, Date: February 13, 2019
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Student Government Association (SGA) President Dallas Kline reviews highlights from a report from Mary Hennessey, assistant to Provost Philip Way. Since spring 2017, Student and Academic Affairs began to share monthly reports containing important developments with SRU's departments and colleges with SGA and The Rocket.

On Monday night, members of the Student Government Association approved a budget of $2.5 million to fund SGA-recognized organizations for the 2019-20 academic year.

According to Logan Tupper, SGA vice president of finance, the budget increase was based on enrollment projections and previous budget data. The 2019-20 budget amount is an 8.3 percent increase from the 2018-19 academic year and is the biggest budget amount within the past 10 academic years.

“We used a little over $2.3 million last year, so we thought that $2.5 million was an adequate amount because that’s probably how much we’ll collect,” Tupper said.

SGA’s budget comes from a percentage of the student tuition in the form of the student activity fee. In the 2018-19 academic year, the student activity fees of $202.55 for full-time undergraduate students and $243.81 for full-time graduate students contributed to an SGA budget totaling $2,308,118.

Under SGA’s no-cap budget model, club officers will not be “capped off” at a certain value when they submit a budget, so clubs can ask for everything they may need as long as the requests fall within policy.

“If a club’s been requested for a month or five years, they can request the same amount of money,” Tupper said.

Club representatives can complete their budgets on CORE through March 8. Members of the finance committee are available on Feb. 19, Feb. 26, March 5, and March 7 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Smith Student Center to review budgets.

“Once the committee looks at [the budget], they’ll approve it and send it to their advisor,” Tupper said. “Then, it will be sent to budgeting day, and that’s when we make the final decision to approve all the budgets.”

The senate also approved $5,842 in new initiative requests for Alpha Phi Alpha ($375 for Steel City Step Show tickets), Western Equestrian Team ($467 for entry fees for a regional competition in Columbiana, Ohio) and Women’s Club Volleyball (up to $5,000 for nine athletes to compete in a tournament in Denver, Colorado).

Another new initiative request from National Honor Society for Dance Arts (NHSDA), which was formerly Sigma Rho Delta, of $358.30 was tabled.  The original motion stated that the request was for a facility rental for their annual banquet and show; however, representatives of the club said that they actually needed $700 for transportation instead.

“Our original request was for $700, we received that in previous years,” Caroline Ready, event coordinator of NHSDA, said. “We had no issues receiving this money in the past, and I’m not sure what happened this year specifically.”

Senator Jake Cribbs was approved as the 2019 election commissioner. Senators Caitlyn Kilmer and Bill Herb as well as Nicole Dunlop, vice president of internal affairs, and Eric Lehman, parliamentarian, will serve as committee members. The committee will be responsible for producing election documents and managing an ethical election, according to Dallas Kline, SGA president.

“These people will basically be in charge of the elections so that way E-board can continue to do their duties and responsibilities,” Kline said.

Cribbs, Kilmer, Herb, Dunlop and Lehman will not seek reelection, making them eligible for a role on the election committee, according to Kline.

According to SGA’s constitution, the parliamentarian typically serves as the election commissioner unless they are seeking election. While he will not seek reelection, Lehman asked Kline to not serve as commissioner for personal and academic reasons.

“I’d rather put someone in that position that’s going to do the job well and be dedicated to it,” Kline said.

The election process will continue on Feb. 18 when election and petition packets are published on CORE. Any students interested in running for an executive board or senate position for the 2019-20 academic year must uploaded their completed packets by March 22.

SGA’s next formal meeting will be Feb. 25 at 7:30 p.m. in the Smith Student Center Theater.

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Hannah is a senior secondary English education major and communication minor entering her third year on The Rocket staff and her second year as editor-in-chief. Previously, she served as assistant news editor and covered Student Government Association affairs. After graduation, she hopes to teach English, communications and journalism to high school students. Hannah has won numerous awards for her writing and design work with The Rocket and was named SRU's Student Leader of the Year in 2020. Outside of The Rocket, Hannah is also part of WSRU-TV, Sigma Tau Delta and the Honors College.

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