Student Government Association unsure how to distribute funds
November 16, 2005
Filed under News
Approximately $300,000 has accumulated into the SGA’s Senate Bill 135 account and has left student government wondering how they plan on using it.
SB 135 passed in 1981 and was implemented in 1982. The account acquires money from students at the time of registration. According to Don Turney, dean of students, each student is charged $1 per unit with a maximum of five units being charged to a student per semester.
Monies generated from the fee go into the SB 135 account and are only to be used on projects that have to do with “financing, constructing, enlarging, remodeling, refurbishing and operating” the Campus Center.
“In my opinion, they haven’t done much with it,” said Turney.
Some of the money in the account, according to Turney, went into improving the landscaping in the Campus Center area and also toward the Student Lounge, which is still not open to students.
The approximate cost for those projects, Turney said, were $6,000 for the game room and $8,000 for the recent landscaping which leaves a lot of extra money available.
Turney said that some of the ideas that have come up have been to improve sound and visual equipment in the Executive Board Room and Fireside Room. Another proposed project, which has been estimated to cost from $60,000 to $100,000, is to completely refurbish the cafeteria. Turney said that this idea would bring a French cafÇ look to the facility. Cobblestone flooring, awnings, and outside cafÇ-style tables were among some of the effects mentioned.
Turney said that not very much money has been used out of the account in the past few years and that he would like to see that change.
” [You] can’t keep taking money from students and not give them anything,” Turney said.
Vice President of Student Services Mildred Lovato echoed the plans of Turney, citing projects such as the Student Lounge and the landscaping. Lovato said that the plan is to have students working in the Student Lounge area to monitor machines and act as a form of fraud prevention.
Lovato said that the delay in the opening of the Student Lounge and other projects could be pinned on space issues that the campus is dealing with because of the renovation projects on campus.
“Space is an issue,” Lovato said. “[We want to] move forward with projects without disruptions to the classrooms.”
SGA President Ash West said that the problematic task at hand is figuring out who the target audience is for projects such as the Student Lounge and Internet cafÇ. Currently, West said, projects have stemmed from student input primarily from BC clubs and other SGA members.
?It?s going to be for students who are most involved,? West said, referring to the Student Lounge and Internet cafÇ.
According to West, homecoming and other recent projects have diverted attention away from the SB 135 money, but now that those events are over SGA plans on devoting more time to completing Campus Center projects.
“We’re a lot more focused on it now,” West said.
West said that there is a demand from students to add a couple of pool tables to the Student Lounge. In addition to the pool tables, West said he would like to see four new computers added to the lounge for students to “chat or get on Myspace,” as well as add an Internet jukebox so students have the opportunity to listen to music.
“I’d like to get some couches in there,” West added.
Tight constraints on the money are the biggest obstacles in deciding how to use it. Having students perform the work, such as the landscaping from horticulture classes, helps to cut down some of the costs for the projects.
West expressed an interest in projects, such as a mural painted by BC art students to “remodel” the campus center.
“Basically it’s money with strings attached, so we don’t go crazy with it,” West said.