ASG Senate approves $26,000 in emergency funding for student groups


Alison Albeda / Daily Senior Staffer

ASG’s newly-formed Emergency Funding Committee made recommendations for allocation of emergency funds. Associated Student Government approved of more than $26,000 in emergency funding after student groups were affected by budget cuts.

Sneha Dey, Reporter

Associated Student Government approved over $26,000 in emergency funding to nine student groups during Wednesday’s Senate meeting. The move comes after groups were hit by school and departmental budget cuts.

The money will come from a separate budget allocation, which ASG says has not been touched for 14 years. SESP junior Isabel Dobbel, vice president for A-Status Finances, said now is the most appropriate time to use these allocated funds.

“As a private institution, we do not really face budget cuts,” Dobbel said. “This really sent everyone in shock. This money even though it is allocated by ASG, it is the student body’s money and those students into those groups pay into this pool as well and they deserve to use it.”

The clubs receiving assistance include Model UN, Special Olympics, The Campus Kitchen, Supplies for Dreams, NU Heights, Global Brigades, NUCHR, MiniChefz and Mock Trial.

ASG formed an Emergency Funding Committee to determine groups to receive funding. The committee is chaired by Dobbel and is also made up of the vice president for B-Status Finances, a Senator and five A-Status finances committee account executives.

In previous weeks, the committee sent out a campus-wide Wildcat Connection email asking groups to reach out if in need of assistance. The committee interviewed applicants earlier this month to determine whether the groups would receive funding.

NUCHR will receive the most sizable amount of funding, at $7,500. The organization lost $8,000 from the Buffett Institute for Global Studies, the group said. The money will be used to compensate for the deficit and cover the cost of a keynote speaker.

The Senate approved an additional $4,000 for Mock Trial. The group originally requested $12,000 in funding, but the committee recommended none, noting the organization’s exclusive nature as the primary reason.

Weinberg senior and Mock Trial treasurer Nick Anderson made a follow-up request for $7,500 at the meeting, referring to the funds as an “operational necessity” to keep the club open to students of all financial backgrounds. The approved $4,000 will go primarily towards airfare travel, he said.

“Given that this was an emergency funding ground, we were trying to fill in holes of the budget… it feels more appropriate to give funding we wouldn’t have in the past like supplementing student airfare,” Weinberg senator Matthew Wylie said.

Purple Line Figure Skating and Global Engagement Summit requested funding but will not receive any support.

The emergency funding is an unprecedented move by ASG. Generally, the finance committees have to follow strict guidelines when providing funding, Dobbel said. The Emergency Funding Committee instead considered what would be a responsible use of student activities funds.

The committee said it intends to follow up with another round of funding, particularly for organizations affected by departmental cuts.

Dobbel said she was excited to assist clubs that otherwise would not have survived, adding that the finance committees are often perceived as “removed from ASG or even… aggressive in the way we fund.”

The emergency funding allowed the finance committee to “bridge any feelings (and) help this community in every way we possibly can,” she said.

This article was updated to remove a quote from a student to protect their privacy.

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