The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

S.G.I Budget Strain

 

Student Government, Inc.’s cuts to their 2010-2011 budget have left some student organizations with shrunken support and less funding than in years past.

S.G.I. President Patrick Brewer has recently told the Torch that the $1,118,000 S.G.I. yearly budget, which is comprised of student activity fees, has been affected by “errors in book-keeping by past executive boards.”

Michelle Walker, a senior and current president of the Fashion Club, says that her organization has been “affected drastically” by cuts to their funding.

“When I first got the e-mail with our line of budget, I was confused and didn’t understand how that could be for the whole year,” said Walker. “S.G.I. overspent and the organizations are currently suffering from that.”

Walker, who also serves as the club’s treasurer, said she has the responsibility to secure outside sponsors to keep the club running financially.

“Fortunately, last year’s fashion show brought in a sufficient amount of money,” said Walker.

Gabi Dickens, who is president of the St. John’s Advertising Club, said that her organization’s budget allocation saw a decrease to last year’s budget.

“We can only have one ‘networking event’ this year because we cannot afford to cater/set up the event twice a year, like they have done in the past,” said Dickens.

As reported in the Oct. 13 issue of the Torch, Brewer said he regrets the decrease in funding that student organizations must deal with, describing it as one of “the most unfortunate changes” that had to be made to this year’s budget.

The S.G.I. President also mentioned that certain budget maneuvers were being looked at to cushion the impact made to organizations.

“To alleviate the crunch, we are placing special emphasis on the S.G.I. and Cultural Budget Committees, the Inter-Greek Council, and Campus Activities Board as alternative sources of funding for student organizations,” said Brewer.

The S.G.I. budget, which totals more than $1 million, is comprised of three separate budgets: the operating budget, the government budget, and the organization budget. Each budget is responsible for funding different areas of S.G.I., including each organization.

The operating budget, which totals $358,650, covers many of the costs of operating S.G.I. Brewer noted that this budget also includes “all Public Safety and Facilities expenses incurred at events held by student organizations.” These two things alone make up for aproximately $218,000, or two-thirds of the entire operating budget.

 

Student Government, Inc.’s cuts to their 2010-2011 budget have left some student organizations with shrunken support and less funding than in years past.

S.G.I. President Patrick Brewer has recently told the Torch that the $1,118,000 S.G.I. yearly budget, which is comprised of student activity fees, has been affected by “errors in book-keeping by past executive boards.”

Michelle Walker, a senior and current president of the Fashion Club, says that her organization has been “affected drastically” by cuts to their funding.

“When I first got the e-mail with our line of budget, I was confused and didn’t understand how that could be for the whole year,” said Walker. “S.G.I. overspent and the organizations are currently suffering from that.”

Walker, who also serves as the club’s treasurer, said she has the responsibility to secure outside sponsors to keep the club running financially.

“Fortunately, last year’s fashion show brought in a sufficient amount of money,” said Walker.

Gabi Dickens, who is president of the St. John’s Advertising Club, said that her organization’s budget allocation saw a decrease to last year’s budget.

“We can only have one ‘networking event’ this year because we cannot afford to cater/set up the event twice a year, like they have done in the past,” said Dickens.

As reported in the Oct. 13 issue of the Torch, Brewer said he regrets the decrease in funding that student organizations must deal with, describing it as one of “the most unfortunate changes” that had to be made to this year’s budget.

The S.G.I. President also mentioned that certain budget maneuvers were being looked at to cushion the impact made to organizations.

“To alleviate the crunch, we are placing special emphasis on the S.G.I. and Cultural Budget Committees, the Inter-Greek Council, and Campus Activities Board as alternative sources of funding for student organizations,” said Brewer.

The S.G.I. budget, which totals more than $1 million, is comprised of three separate budgets: the operating budget, the government budget, and the organization budget. Each budget is responsible for funding different areas of S.G.I., including each organization.

The operating budget, which totals $358,650, covers many of the costs of operating S.G.I. Brewer noted that this budget also includes “all Public Safety and Facilities expenses incurred at events held by student organizations.” These two things alone make up for aproximately $218,000, or two-thirds of the entire operating budget.

 

Student Government, Inc.’s cuts to their 2010-2011 budget have left some student organizations with shrunken support and less funding than in years past.

S.G.I. President Patrick Brewer has recently told the Torch that the $1,118,000 S.G.I. yearly budget, which is comprised of student activity fees, has been affected by “errors in book-keeping by past executive boards.”

Michelle Walker, a senior and current president of the Fashion Club, says that her organization has been “affected drastically” by cuts to their funding.

“When I first got the e-mail with our line of budget, I was confused and didn’t understand how that could be for the whole year,” said Walker. “S.G.I. overspent and the organizations are currently suffering from that.”

Walker, who also serves as the club’s treasurer, said she has the responsibility to secure outside sponsors to keep the club running financially.

“Fortunately, last year’s fashion show brought in a sufficient amount of money,” said Walker.

Gabi Dickens, who is president of the St. John’s Advertising Club, said that her organization’s budget allocation saw a decrease to last year’s budget.

“We can only have one ‘networking event’ this year because we cannot afford to cater/set up the event twice a year, like they have done in the past,” said Dickens.

As reported in the Oct. 13 issue of the Torch, Brewer said he regrets the decrease in funding that student organizations must deal with, describing it as one of “the most unfortunate changes” that had to be made to this year’s budget.

The S.G.I. President also mentioned that certain budget maneuvers were being looked at to cushion the impact made to organizations.

“To alleviate the crunch, we are placing special emphasis on the S.G.I. and Cultural Budget Committees, the Inter-Greek Council, and Campus Activities Board as alternative sources of funding for student organizations,” said Brewer.

The S.G.I. budget, which totals more than $1 million, is comprised of three separate budgets: the operating budget, the government budget, and the organization budget. Each budget is responsible for funding different areas of S.G.I., including each organization.

The operating budget, which totals $358,650, covers many of the costs of operating S.G.I. Brewer noted that this budget also includes “all Public Safety and Facilities expenses in
curred at events held by student organizations.” These two things alone make up for aproximately $218,000, or two-thirds of the entire operating budget.

The operating budget also helps fund licensing fees for music played at events and games.

“It is more appropriate to view this section as the operating expenses for student events, rather than just the institution of student government” said Brewer.

The organization budgets, which make up almost half of the entire S.G.I. budget, provide funds to organizations around campus. For example, Haraya, the St. John’s Pan-African Students’ Coalition, has been allocated $48,000 for the year.

The Vincentian Yearbook, another one of the larger student organizations, is budgeted to receive $55,000 for the year. Cynthia Garcia, who is Editor-in-Chief of the yearbook, said that this is much less than last year’s allocation.

According to the S.G.I. budget, one line from the government budget allocated $0 expenses for the year, while $1,737.45 has already been spent from that line.

Another area of S.G.I.’s finances that has been a topic of discussion at floor meetings is a $50,000 earned income account which is comprised of funds from various student organizations.

In the summer of 2009, S.G.I. dipped into that account to cover a “shortfall of available cash,” according to associate vice president for Student Affairs and S.G.I. advisor Darren Morton.

“This process is similar to a bank that is using deposited money for other purposes, such as loans, etc.” Morton said. “The use of Earned Income was necessary at the time as a result an several unforeseen and increased expenses associated with student programming.”

The $50,000 earned income account is referenced in the minutes from anAug. 30 S.G.I. meeting this year, where the account is described as “one lump account-orgs were not notified.”

President Brewer has refused to comment on the earned income account in the past, and was not able to be contacted this week. The $50,000 earned income account is not listed on the 2010-2011 official budget.

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