ASG proposal would cut budget in half

Alice Truong

The ASG operating budget for this upcoming year will be decreased by almost half of the current budget of $88,000 if the Senate approves the measure at next week’s meeting.

With the 2008-09 budget set at $43,000, the saved $45,000 would mean more money for student groups.

“Hopefully this will improve programming across campus,” ASG President Jon Webber said.

The largest decrease came from the removal of Associated Student Government student legal services, subtracting $35,000 from the budget, which was used to pay for the salary of the lawyer. The biggest expense in the upcoming budget is paying for ASG-related expenses for Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebrations, costing $20,000.

Webber said that though the current budget is set at $88,000, only about $20,000 has been spent. Much of the savings also included scaling back the budget to what is actually used. For example, ASG allocated $6,000 to spend on copier maintenance for the current year, but Webber said the full amount wasn’t being used. The copier budget has been decreased to $3,500. While many cuts were made in the upcoming budget, several increases were also made.

The fall activities fair’s budget was increased from $4,500 to $6,000 for next year because of increased student turnout and demand. A new “senate project pool” of $5,000 was created for the upcoming year.

“One of my biggest frustrations of the year is that I didn’t set my own budget,” Webber said. “I’m setting the budget for the next person.”

The pool will allow the ASG president, executive board members or senators to access the funds so long as the Senate approves a petition from the people requesting to spend the money. Because the pool is new to ASG, the amount of money available is set to be small. “It’s big enough to make a difference, but not big enough to be ridiculous,” he said. “It would allow them to have things on their priority list or agenda.”

Money not used from the pool would be rolled back to the body.

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