Emerson College’s only independent, student-run newspaper since 1947

The Berkeley Beacon

Emerson College’s only independent, student-run newspaper since 1947

The Berkeley Beacon

Emerson College’s only independent, student-run newspaper since 1947

The Berkeley Beacon

SGA faces a total of $1.3 million in annual budget requests

Kellyn Taylor

The Student Government Association will hold annual budget request meetings beginning next week, where they will meet with organizations who are requesting an increase in their budget from last year. 

SGA and the Financial Advisory Board (FAB) are tasked with cutting $375,000 from the requests as $1.3 million has been requested by Emerson student organizations, with a limit of $925,000 allowed to be allocated from the annual budget request (ABR) budget. 

Nandan Nair, executive treasurer of SGA, cites a higher demand for funds as the reason behind the discrepancy between the requested funds and the ABR budget. 

“Many of these budgets are over a 70 percent increase from this year,” he said. “We have a few [organizations] requesting over $20,000.”

ABRs are mandatory for any organization that desires funding from SGA and Student Engagement and Leadership (SEAL). In their budgets, organizations can request money for their yearly expenses, such as merchandise, props, equipment, and supplies. Once FAB reviews the requested budget, the money is allocated to the organizations to be spent on the outlined expenses. 

SGA is no stranger to having a higher demand than what they can allocate as they faced requests almost double their allocated appeals budget earlier this semester. The current budget, Nair explained, currently sits at $16,550. Several appeals with requests under $1,000 were approved by FAB during their meeting earlier in the week, accounting for the lower budget. 

Delta Kappa Alpha, Five Cent Sound, The Girlie Project, Acapellics, Atlas Magazine, Films from the Margin, and the Society of Professional Journalists are all organizations whose appeals were approved by FAB, explained Nair. The remaining six appeals will be voted on by SGA’s general assembly in the weeks after spring break when FAB can review the appeals. 

One of those appeals, a request from WECB for $10,444, was the subject of a heavy debate during SGA’s Feb. 16 meeting. 

WECB’s original request for $10,444 covered funding for merchandise, a vinyl project to highlight Emerson artists, new recording equipment, and a new office computer for the studio. FAB reviewed the appeal before partially denying the request and cutting the total down to $3,733. The debate surrounding the appeal centers on WECB’s decision to include these expenses as an appeal despite some items falling under the category of purchases that should be part of their annual budget request. 

“We reached out to WECB,” Nair said, “but we could not get a representative to attend a general assembly [meeting].”

Citing next week’s March 8 meeting and the probability of low attendance due to the start of spring break, Nair explained, “We are just going to move this [appeal] to a vote today.”

Citing the concern over the ever-lowering budget and the lack of a representative to provide further information about the use of the allocated budget, the members of the general assembly were hesitant to approve the appeal without having all of the desired information. WECB’s appeal was unanimously denied in an official vote of 0-9. 

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About the Contributor
Katherine Cressman, Staff Writer
Katherine is a freshman journalism major from Bucks County, Pennsylvania. When she is not writing you can find her singing in Achoired Taste, playing tennis, or watching cat videos on TikTok.

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