Student Senate passes 2018-19 Organized Activities Budget

The allocable portion of student segregated fees increased by $5

More stories from Rachyl Houterman


Photo by Lindsey Ambrosius

Nine new on- and off-campus senators were sworn in at Monday’s meeting.

On Monday, Student Senate passed the 2018-19 Organized Activities Budget, cementing how funds will be allocated for the upcoming academic year.

Notable changes include a $5 increase in per student segregated fees, bringing the total to $134, and a defunded Collegiate Readership Program.

The $134 is the allocable amount of segregated fees students pay each semester.

The defunding of the Collegiate Readership Program resulted from program debt and lack of student utilization, Finance Director Dier Pulatov said. The program provided newspapers such as The New York Times, USA Today and the Leader-Telegram in various campus buildings for students to utilize.

Student Body President Katy McGarry said the Information Technology Commission is working on creating an online subscription to replace it.

The Student Senate General Operations budget increased by $21,000 (14 percent), a result of funding the Senate Equity Director of the Equity in Student Matters Commission, Pulatov said. Student Senate has also taken over Campus Cab funding, which helps explain the increase.

“The finance commission did a diligent job of really looking over everything,” McGarry said. “I commend them for their effort and their long nights.”

The budget passed 21-0-4.

Increasing Finance Commission Membership

Senate also passed a bill to amend the Finance Commission bylaws, increasing the total membership from 13 to 14. Members are both senators and non-senators.

Explanation for the increase stems from inability to meet quorum in past finance commission meetings due to members leaving before adjournment, Pulatov said. With an additional member, Pulatov said it would help the commission continue business during meeting times.

Ryan Keller, an off-campus senator and member of the finance commission, spoke in support of the bill, citing four-hour long deliberations as difficult for members to commit to various times of the week.

“I could tell you right now that it’s just not possible for a student senator to meet every single one of these meetings and be there the entire time,” Keller said. “I think it should be expected of you to attend as much as possible … but having this additional person’s really gonna help to make sure that our meetings can still go through and have a quorum even when students or senators can’t attend.”

Branden Yates, the chief of staff, disagreed with the bill’s proposal.

“I think rather than increase the capsize (sic), we should encourage the current senators to fix their priorities or get senators on who will make finance commission their priority and encourage the current senators to show up to meetings rather than, you know, skip out or whatever,” Yates said.

The bill passed 23-1-3

Other news:

  • Nine new senators were sworn in.
    • Justin Vue, on-campus
    • Anna Ziebell, on-campus
    • Claire McCarty, off-campus
    • Thomas Rocque, off-campus
    • Kristina Haideman, off-campus
    • David Miller, off-campus
    • Lydia Zipperer, off-campus
    • Robert Nguyen, off-campus
    • Ian McDonald, off-campus