At its Nov. 3 meeting, the Student Finance Board (SFB) chose not to fund requests from both Intramural Flag Football and the Indian Student Assocation (ISA), marking its second and third zero-funding motions of the year.
Flag football had asked for $6,696 for 16 team members to attend the ACIC Nike Flag Football National Championship in New Orleans from Dec. 28 to Jan. 2.
Under the team’s request, each member would pay $200 out of his own pocket for the trip, with fund raising deducting another projected $1,750 from the total cost of $11,646. The request, if fully funded, would have depleted most of SFB’s remaining conference request line.
But the team had to contend with SFB policy, which states that intramural teams are ineligible to receive conference request funds.
Craig Gross, SFB chairperson, explained that the board would have to vote by a two-thirds majority to even consider the request for funding, because it requires suspending the rules of SFB that normally preclude intramural teams from requesting money for conferences.
Diane Yee, senior business administration major, argued that because there was no club flag football, the board should consider the team like it would a club sport. The board was skeptical, and Gross admitted that he told the team to “expect to be disappointed” when it came for funding.
“I don’t see any tangible benefits from this,” Matthew Civiletti, Student Government Association (SGA) vice president of administration and finance, said. “I think this is a waste of student funds.”
“The definition of intramural is on campus,” Bill Carroll, director of finance, agreed. “Their purpose is to play here.”
The request ended up dying before it was even formally considered because no board member made a motion to suspend the rules to consider the request.
With a vote of 14-0-1, ISA’s $49 request for Garba, which Komal Gala, ISA president, described as a night of cultural awareness, also received no funding. At the event, participants would learn simple steps from Indian dances that could be practiced that night.
The request asked for reimbursement for $42 in publicity that was already spent on posters before ISA asked for funding. This request marked the third time ISA asked the board for money after spending it or committing itself to spending it, leaving some board members wondering what sort of precedent this would set.
“To have a precedent for future events,” Erica Klazmer, freshman representative, said, “We should zero fund.”
Jonathan Borst, sophomore representative, also pointed out that the advertising posted by ISA did not mention that the event was “SAF funded” as SFB policy requires. He said this was another reason to zero fund.
In addition, the board fully funded a $3,003 request from the Gay Union of Trenton State at TCNJ (GUTS) for its annual AIDS Awareness Week.
From Nov. 28 to Dec. 3, the organization would to host a lecture by poet River Huston and display four panels from the national AIDS quilt, which honors those who have died from the disease.
According to Julie Kirschner, GUTS president, the last time the club hosted Huston two years ago, 60 people came to the event.
Kirschner said her organization had not raised funds for its programs, but plans to and hopes to do so for future programs. This raised concerns across the board.
“This is their third request and they’re getting pricey,” Julia Pratt, director of communication, said. “Just because (the multicultural line) is so big, we shouldn’t just hand it out.”
“To spend $2,500 for 60 people seems like too much,” Kobi Wilmot, junior representative, said.
Klazmer, the freshman representative, proposed funding GUTS’ request with $348, which would cut Huston and keep the AIDS quilt. The proposal, however, met opposition. While the board agreed that GUTS needed to fund raise, it felt that this program wasn’t the one to axe.
“This organization needs to start fund raising, but to penalize AIDS Awareness Week for it is a crime,” Mary Ennis, assistant chairperson, said.
Klazmer’s motion failed to carry a majority, and Ennis’s motion to fully fund the request passed.
The board also funded $147 of a $293 request from Amnesty International to attend Amnesty’s Northeast Regional Conference.
The College Democrats received a $115 publicity budget to get the long dormant organization off the ground again at the College.