At its Monday afternoon meeting, Associated Students Finance Board gave away its remaining $185 and debated what advice to give to Legislative Council about next year’s budget.
The board decided to recommend changes to next year’s funding for four groups which they believed deserved more or less money than A.S. President Cervin Morris allocated to them in his proposal at an April 27 Leg Council meeting. At that meeting, the budget had to be revamped after A.S. discovered that an accounting error had left them with a surplus of $32,000 for next year. Although Finance Board does not have the power to change Leg Council’s budget, the board decided to make several recommendations to the council at their Wednesday meeting. Board members also gave away the $185 left of their budget, $100 of which was returned to A.S. by a student group that did not use the money, and the remaining $85 that was left over from their previous meeting. The board chose to split the $185 between the three groups requesting money and give each group $61.67.
The bulk of the meeting was taken up by debate about how to alter Morris’ funding plan, though board member Justin Pabian said Finance Board’s input was irrelevant.
“I still think this conversation is pointless because Leg Council does not have to listen to anything we say, and odds are they probably won’t,” Pabian said.
Despite several objections to the necessity of the discussion, board members decided to add $875 to the State Affairs Organizing Director position budget for a total of $2,000 and increase the funding for the Student Lobby by $2,000 to a total of $4,050 of funding for next year. The board will also advise Leg Council to bump up A.S. Queer Commission’s funding by $1,400 to give them a total of $2,000 in annual funding and cut funding for Media Relations in half, leaving the committee with a total of $1,500.
Board member Andrea Wells said she was in favor of giving money to groups regardless of their past achievements, or lack thereof.
“The past shouldn’t be representative of the future,” Wells said. “I want to give Queer Commission more money, but if we’re going on the past, Queer Commission hasn’t given us minutes all year.”
Board member Felicia Cruz said Leg Council should give groups as much funding as they request at the beginning of the year so students don’t have to continuously return to Finance Board when their money runs out.
“I have a personal problem with board members from student groups coming to Finance Board to ask for money because that means they’re being underfunded,” Cruz said. “And we’re saying they can always just come back to Finance Board, but that’s not always true – money runs out.”
Student Lobby co-chair Lance Tackett said simply spreading money around to groups that employ it for unclear uses will not help A.S.
“Why are we making uninformed decisions?” Tackett said. “We can’t just be giving random amounts of money if we don’t know where that money is going. We need to see some tangible results rather than just speech.”
Third-year business economics major Andrea Llovera requested funding to rent Campbell Hall for Iorana te Otea’s second annual Island Wishes Benefit, which offers Polynesian and Pacific Islander dancing to raise money for the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
Fourth-year biopsychology major Melodie Maghinay asked for $300 to help rent I.V. Theater and help support the Filipino group Kapatirang Pilipino’s Talent Show.
The Educational Opportunity Program requested $470.80 for a new social program held at Francisco Torres Residence Hall. Cruz, who is also a liaison to the group, said the event would help bridge cultures with a keynote speaker, DJ and food.
The board also voted to publicly support the A.S. Student Commission on Racial Equality (SCORE) stance against military ventures on campus as military policies do not coincide with the nondiscriminatory policies of UCSB.