The Student Government Association could allocate nearly $1,000,000 to student organizations this year—its highest ever.
The maximum amount of money SGA can designate for student funding is $966,052. SGA already allocated $724,470 for student organization’s annual budgets for the 2018-2019 academic year during the Annual Budgetary Request process last semester. The rest—$241,852—is designated for granting appeal requests to SGA-recognized organizations.
Leftover annual budgets from organizations and roll-over from the previous year’s appeals partially fund the appeals account. Last year, the appeals account started at $248,965.
SGA recognized organizations requested $901,326 during the ABR process last semester. ABR allows SGA recognized organizations, and SGA itself, to apply for a yearly budget.
The money designated to fund organization’s budgets during ABR comes from a portion of the Student Services Fee, an $836 annual charge paid by all full-time undergraduate students.
For the 2017-2018 academic year, the Student Services Fee was $800—$36 less than this year. The increase for this year can be attributed to the 4.5 percent tuition increase.
“That was not a choice that we had made, that’s a choice the administration had made and we found out about later,” Executive Treasurer Ian Mandt said in regards to the tuition increase.
Of the Student Services Fee, only $190 goes to SGA. The remaining 77 percent is shared with departments that provide student-oriented services and activities on campus, such as the Registrar’s Office and Student Life, as well as the Center for Health and Wellness and Emerson Counseling and Psychological Services.
Mandt said the executive treasurer and SGA advisor reserve the right to increase or decrease the amount of the Student Services Fee that goes to SGA, pending joint session approval.
“It’s not something that I’ve considered or explored,” Mandt said.
News editor Riane Roldan did not edit this article due to a conflict of interest. Chris Van Buskirk contributed reporting.