The first Business and Finance Committee meeting of the year rolled around on Tuesday, Sept. 17 as several student organizations and club sports came to request money for upcoming events.
Speaker of the Senate Taylor Lawrence opened the meeting by both reminding the leaders of student organizations to open an account with the Eastern Michigan University Credit Union (EMUCU) and introducing a possible new SG-funded student service.
Student Government is looking into purchasing 100 iClickers, a leading audience response system for college students. They would be available for rental from the Halle library in the winter semester if the pilot program is approved.
The program would cost roughly $4,400, which would come out of media, general services and reserves. Speaker Lawrence has yet to discuss with faculty if this is an effective use of funds amidst concerns that the technology may become outdated quickly.
The Committee then moved to elect a vice chair. Sen. Tyler Wright was elected over fellow Sen. Reid Scott by a vote of 3-2. Both cited experience within the committee and the ability to make tough fiscal decisions.
Student organizations and club sports teams were then given authorization to request money from Student Government for events, leadership opportunities and tournaments. Organizations in attendance were Behind the Music EMU, Surge at EMU, National Association of Black Accountants, Mock Trial, Club Baseball and Women’s Lacrosse.
Behind the Music EMU requested a large sum of $5,872 for the NVRCH Festival that was held at the Convocation Center on Thursday, Sept. 19. But the organization was only able to get the Student Government capped amount per organization of $3,800. Senators justified putting forward the money by arguing that the event would bring payoff to the university and to the scholarship fund of late EMU student Jayquon Tillman; they also argued that the organization was shortchanged by their sponsors. The funds were given after a near-unanimous vote (Director
Mohammad Aggour abstained).
Surge at EMU then requested money for the Second Annual EMUsic Fest on Thursday, Sept 26. EMUsic Fest is a free outdoor music festival with local music and vendors that debuted last year. Sponsored primarily by Sweetwater’s and serving as a springboard for local businesses and artists, the organization is expecting a large turnout by members of the Eastern Michigan, Ypsilanti and greater Michigan communities. Surge at EMU was able to get $3,000 for the event.
The National Association of Black Accountants and Mock Trial received their requested amounts of $1,200 and $2,000, respectively, by near-unanimous votes for upcoming conferences and competitions, where they will represent the University among prestigious businesses and universities nationwide. Both organizations are covering their own transportation costs.
Finally, Club Baseball and Women’s Lacrosse were able to get the $2,000 and $1,200 they requested for upcoming benefit events and league fees.
Sen. Alexa Cooley reminded the organizations the benefits of coming to more meetings and requesting funds incrementally. The Committee also refreshed themselves on Robert’s Rules and their recent Resolution 106-01 to split the allocation of SG funds to student organizations and club sports.