A.S. Council Discusses Spring Budget

Next year’s budget is based on a projected revenue of $2,624,766.21 — most of which will be generated by the quarterly $47 activity fee paid by every student. Of this budget, the council has allocated all but $219,505.09 among its various offices and services.

According to Ben Hassine, she and Ang followed the Fall Revise budget-planning process — the same system utilized last year by then-A.S. President Utsav Gupta. Under the Fall Revise system, they created an initial budget that postpones the allocating of funds to a pre-determined set of items. The council will then finalize the budget during Week Three of Fall Quarter.

“This is only the initial budget,” she said. “It’s the spring budget that covers summer through Week Three of fall.”

Ang said it was necessary to use the Fall Revise system in order for council executives to draft the most accurate budget possible.

“I’m really in favor of the Fall Revise,” he said. “We don’t know how many people will be attending — we allocated for [a total enrollment of] 21,850, but there could be more. and that would change our budget. The Fall Revise makes sure that we don’t have the wrong allocation. I didn’t finish meeting with orgs, and we need more time to solidify and clarify the allocations.”

New allocations in the budget include a $10 weekly stipend for the council’s 29 senators — which will amount to $8,700 by the end of the year. In addition, several line items have been added to various offices, such as $2,400 reserved for the American Indian Recruitment program under the Office of External Affairs.

The budget also accounts for the council’s new staff positions; most notably, graphic artist and website developer. Last year, there were only three graphic artists, while next year, five additional graphic artists will be hired. In addition, a computer-support position has been created. According to Ang, this is because designers and webmasters will be working throughout the summer to overhaul the A.S. website.

Campus media organizations received $30,000 in preliminary funding, whereas last year’s spring budget allocated an initial amount of only $20,000 to such organizations. Ang said this change is meant to accommodate the revised media funding guidelines passed on May 5, which created a cap of $4,000 per quarter for quarterly publications and $6,000 per year for annual publications.

He said that — because the new guidelines allow media orgs to request additional emergency funding — he wanted to ensure that council had the necessary funds.

“However, I can guarantee that the final budget will not fall below $45,000,” Ang said.

A.S. Concerts and Events received $751,500 for 2010-11 programming, including $30,000 for Bear Gardens in Fall Quarter and $550,000 for next year’s Sun God Festival  — the same amount allocated for this year’s festival.

Ang said that one of his goals is to have minimum carry-forward — or excess student fees — left over at the end of Spring Quarter 2011.

“I don’t want to have a large carry-forward,” he said. “These are the student fees that students this year pay, and it should go back to them this year.”

As of press time, the council had not finalized deliberations on the budget.

Readers can contact Angela Chen at [email protected].

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