SFB revises budget proceedings to conserve funds

In an effort to make spending more efficient, the Student Finance Board (SFB) announced its revised budget proceedings last Thursday at the SFB Budget Clinic, a part of the Office of Campus Activity’s Programming 101 series designed to help student organizations revitalize their activities.

All organizations funded by the Student Activities Fee (SAF) are subject to the changes, which take effect in Fall 2004.

The biggest change in the process comes in the form of the base budget, which organizations apply for each semester. Under the old system, clubs included the expenses for any programs they had planned in their base budget.

Because organizations have difficulty estimating the cost of programs so far in advance, and many programs fall through in the planning stages, SFB money often goes unused, Craig Gross, SFB chairman, said.

To ensure that every dollar is spent efficiently, programming costs are no longer included in the basic operating budget.

Instead, the budget includes only necessary spending, such as chapter dues, costs for home games, publicity expenses and equipment fees. The money for programming will now come out of SFB’s special appropriations account.

Under the new system, when a club wants to run a program, it must schedule a time to appear before SFB and present its request. “The switch is SFB’s way to raise efficiency and make sure every SFB dollar is spent, not tied up in unused budgets,” Gross said.

SFB also began new budget lines to cover high volume events, multicultural events and lecture series. The high volume events line will now fund the large events that are being left out of base budgets under the new plan.

This budget line will be used primarily by large campus organizations like the College Union Board (CUB) and the Asian American Association (AAA) to fund events costing between $50,000 and $120,000. Such events include concerts and comedy shows.

According to the proposal, the multicultural event line is designed to fund those organizations or programs that “advocate for a specific or group of specific religious, cultural, ethnic, gender or sexual orientations.”

Gross said in past years multicultural events were given less money because they were funded by the special appropriations account, which was capped at a certain dollar amount.