Understanding club budgets


Paid for by your student services fee

By: Vanessa Ryland-Buntley

On any given day a student can walk through the Seymour College Union at The College at Brockport and see multiple tables offering various forms of information on different clubs – and possibly something to hand out.

Periodically throughout the year there are signs for “giveaways” with print on the bottom saying “paid for by your student services fee.”

With Brockport Student Government going over the final numbers for next year’s club budgets, now is as good as time as any to help students understand what that fee is, where it’s going and how it may, or may not be helping. .

What exactly does this fee pay for? It must cover more than “Joe on the Go” and the do-it-yourself candy stations, right?

A lot of the money is designated to fund the 83 student-run clubs and organizations, as prefaced in a story written by Justin Sullivan in The Brockport Beat on Feb. 14, 2017.

On Feb. 17, 2017, BSG passed budgets for full-time enrollment, priority services and administration operations.  After those budgets are passed, the remaining amount is designated and split up between the four different club councils: academic, cultural, fine arts and service.

Priority services help cover things like The Stylus and WBSU (89.1 The Point) which are Brockport’s newspaper and radio station. The many student-run clubs come under the umbrella of the four councils.

On Feb. 24, 2017, the BSG Senate approved the amounts that would be designated to the four councils:

The Academic Council 20 percent of remaining BSG funds- $35,770.11

The Cultural Council 28 percent of remaining BSG funds- $50,078.15

The Fine Arts Council 25 percent of remaining BSG funds- $44,712.64

The Service Council 27 percent of remaining BSG funds- $48,289.65

Now that these amounts are decided, the big decisions regarding which clubs will have budgets passed or denied come to play.

“For academic (council) we have a list of all clubs who have met club points and whether they have submitted a budget or not and the BSG will go through and make recommendations or suggestions,” BSG Treasurer Zach Loveless said regarding the club decision process.

“Once the percentages are passed through, the council senators go to their respective councils and they, as a council decide on how much each club gets,” said Loveless “In the past, it used to be solely up to the treasurer.”

What becomes of the club if no budget is passed for that club?

Loveless said that each council has a reserve to handle those types of situations and that it can be voted on to use the reserve funding; clubs can also fund raise – without using money received from BSG, that is.

BSG Office Assistant Hope Striffler also assured that there are procedures in place to access the reserve funding for clubs that may not have a budget for their event. The necessary forms and approvals must take place, of course.

While the fate has yet to be decided for many clubs, there does, in fact, seem to be a purpose other than occasional free coffee for the student services fee that students often complain about.

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