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Tuesday, Oct. 4, 2011 12:53 a.m.

Funding approved for nearly 300 student groups

Senator John Bennett, chair of the Finance Committee, tells senators that his committee was able to allocate $50,000 more than estimated this year, breaking the million dollar barrier, during a SA Senate meeting Monday evening. Francis Rivera | Assistant Photo Editor

The Student Association unanimously approved the initial allocations bill without debate or amendments at the Senate meeting Tuesday night.

The bill outlines the distribution of $854,245, out of the SA’s total budget of $1.05 million for the year. A total of 292 student organizations received funding, ranging from $73,825 to $50 per group.

For the first time, the Finance Committee allocated 85 percent of its funds during the first round of allocations, giving student groups greater leeway with spending for the year. In past years, the committee has doled out half the SA’s total budget during initial allocations, intended to cover each organization’s operating cost for the year. Last year’s bill divided just over $500,000 among 270 student organizations.

“The big difference is the fact that it’s a very front-loaded process this year,” John Bennett, chair of the SA Finance Committee, said. Each organization’s budget is expected to last the whole year, including events, with co-sponsorships available for opportunities for events and other initiatives that come up throughout the year.

Bennett said numbers were finalized just a week before, adding about $50,000 more than expected to the funding pool. Earlier this year the Finance Committee estimated their budget to be about $950,000.

Last year, the Finance Committee was given a budget estimate about $270,000 higher than the true total.

Student organizations were notified of their budgets earlier last week. Bennett said the committee met with 66 groups this weekend during the appeals process.

The Student Bar Association received an additional $3,000 in appeals. Bennett said the committee is in “extensive talks” with the GW Law School group about its budget. He said while the budget far exceeds that of any other group, the organization has a far-reaching scope on campus.

The senate confirmed a new senator for the Graduate School of Education and Human Development, first year student Michael Amesquita. Other new members included freshmen Kai Neander, Chase Hardin and Ryan Melcher, which were confirmed by the student life, academic affairs and finance committee respectively.

  • Obvious

    The SBA has a “far-reaching scope on campus” in that John Bennett wants their endorsement this spring when he runs for SA President.

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