A.S. Council Brief: Questions Remain around CARES Act Aid Distribution

Associated Students Senators discussed programming funds for Fall Quarter, the lack of information regarding the distribution of financial aid from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, and the introduction of UCPath for student payrolls during their meeting on Wednesday, May 6. 

A.S. Financial Controller Ethan Christenson announced that the May 29 deadline for student organizations to apply for Fall Quarter funding is no longer effective. Christenson explained that this is a result of the social distancing guidelines of the COVID-19 pandemic and the lack of room reservations.

Furthermore, he explained that the UC San Diego administration is working to create a system where rooms will continue to be used for events while still adhering to social distancing rules. This system would be implemented by scaling down room sizes. However, since the system is not yet completed, no room reservations can be made at this time. The new deadline for program funding is expected to be in mid-July or early August. 

Later in the meeting, Senator Efran Martinez asked about the lack of information about the distribution of the CARES Act financial aid for students, and specifically how the information about the distribution of funds will be publicized to students. There was no clear answer to this, although A.S. President Eleanor Grudin stated that she will look into it. 

There has been lots of confusion regarding the distribution of CARES Act aid, as some students have already received funds while others do not know how to apply. The Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs has stated that 12,000 students are eligible to receive monetary aid from the CARES Act fund. However, the Financial Aid and Scholarship Office has been slow to release information regarding how students can apply to receive these funds. 

Grudin also shared information about UCPath, a new payroll system that will replace the current system, At Your Service. UCSD is the last of the University of California campuses to make the switch. Other UC campuses which have UCPath in place have had many challenges with the program. Grudin encouraged senators to research and be well-informed about the issues regarding UCPath for their senate meeting next week where they will be hearing a presentation about the implementation of UCPath at UCSD. UCPath will be deployed at UCSD starting June 1, 2020.

Artwork by Allyson Llacuna for the UCSD Guardian.