Volume 81, Issue 8
November 6, 2009

Budget Process Explained

By Alice Horner

News Editor

With certain discrepancies between club budgets, the process of how clubs receive the budgets they request is often under speculation. According to Akin Walker, SGA Financial Controller, it involves set restrictions and an individual examinaton of each budget.

There are specific items that are not allowed to be included in the budget. T-shirts, alcohol, gifts or prizes, individual membership fees, and gas (although clubs get 42 cents for every mile) are exempt from budgeting, said Walker.

As for items that can be included in budgets, fundraising events will be completely funded by the SGA, said Walker, and for banquets the SGA will give $10 per plate.

“They have to be events that are open to the entire campus, and we want people to have a few good events instead of several scattered events,” said Walker.

Marshall Cahall, Chairman of the Budget Committee, stated that ,“we’re trying to fund events that will better the campus.”

There is no set formula for assigning budgets for clubs, but instead they are assessed on an individual basis, according to Cahall. “Budgets are assessed on a case-by-case basis,” said Cahall.

“Unfortunately, this formula has not been set in stone,” said Walker.

When examining the amount requested by similar clubs, there are severe discrepancies. For example, College Democrats requested about $300 while College Republicans requested about $11,000, according to the budget sheet distributed to Senate members.

Cahall stated that the budgets are not determined by the number of members in a club, but how well their events are planned.

“Clubs that have a more in-depth budget have a greater chance of receiving the budget they want. That’s not saying something couldn’t get cut anyway,” said Cahall.

Cahall noted that organizations such as Greek life which host long-established events have more accurate budgets, like Kappa Alpha’s Beach Bash that occurs every year. “In general, larger events that are more ongoing traditions tend to have more concise budgets,” said Cahall.

“The purpose of my position is to be unbiased as possible,” said Walker. “Mainly clubs get more money because they budget better,” said Walker.