Associated Students Finance Board doled out $83,800 to 13 campus entities in addition to tabling a $26,000 Boards, Committees and Commissions budget request at its meeting yesterday.
Board members partially funded UCSB Students for a Free Tibet’s $2,350 request, Students for Green Business’ approximately $2,400 request and also distributed $250 allotments from the Students’ Initiative to eight Office of Student Life organizations including the Hong Kong Student Association, Skyline Dancers and the Pre-Veterinary Medical Association. The board also unanimously approved $25,000 in operational costs for America Reads, a work-study program through A.S. Community Affairs Board that tutors local elementary school children.
During a brief closed executive session in the middle of the meeting, board members discussed a $33,500 funding request for the annual UCSB Culture Week, as well as $20,100 request for education research grants for undergraduates. After the closed session, the board approved both requests with consent.
Meanwhile, the board tabled a $26,000 request from A.S. professional staff that would fund “professional development.”
In a written statement to the board, A.S. Student Government Advisor Aaron Jones said the money would fund “attending conferences and taking courses to improve and enhance staff’s ability to stay on top of the latest developments in the field of student affairs and technological developments.”
Board member Chaz Whatley suggested tabling the request in order to obtain a more specified account of the distribution. The request was tabled until next quarter’s first meeting.
“I don’t have a problem with allocating the $26,000,” Whatley said. “I just would like a more detailed outline of what that money is going to.”
The board then heard the financial requests of Students for a Free Tibet, an organization that strives to liberate the people of Tibet through non-violent direct action.
Co-chair for Students for a Free Tibet Tashi Schaaf, a third-year global studies major, said the group needed funding for the Free Tibet! Action Camp, slated for Jan. 4 through 9, 2007 at Madre Grande campground in San Diego.
“Students for a Free Tibet is a world-wide organization and we are having our North American conference action camp in San Diego,” Schaaf said. “We work on general movement building … we are trying to get the youth motivated.”
The board then unanimously approved $1,700 to cover the cost of registration fees, materials and $100 for food.
Afterward, the board gave partial funding to Students for Green Business to help pay for its outreach campaign. The group, formed this year, collaborates with the Country of Santa Barbara to encourage local businesses to use environmentally sustainable practices.
Board members expressed concern regarding the group’s organization, citing a lack of planned distribution of the funds. However, Whatley urged the board to help the fledgling group.
“I think this is a good idea,” Whatley said. “They are just now getting their feet wet and I don’t think we should punish them for that.”
The board then allocated $1,500 with seven in favor and three opposing.
In regards to the $33,500 slated for this spring’s Culture Week, Finance Board chair Nick Szamet said after the meeting that the board created a new A.S. account in order to ensure that the funds are there for the traditionally Finance Board-supported event.
Szamet said the board also discussed the formation of a new education research grant whereby undergraduates can apply to obtain funding for research projects. Szamet said the grant is still in the planning process.