KAIT BEDELL & ALEXANDRA WHITE
New budgeting has clubs doing more with less
The Student Government Association (SGA) has been using a new system for club budgets this year. The new system allows for clubs to request money on Laser Involvement. Clubs can now request the money they need at any point in the semester, instead of having to do so at the beginning of the year.
Previously, select members of SGA’s Financial Affairs board would hold meetings with clubs to review budgets and evaluate what the clubs’ budget would be for the entire year. Senior finance major and SGA’s Vice President of Financial Affairs, Michael Palumbo says the new process does not require clubs to meet with the board to go over the club’s budget for the entire year. “We have semesterly meetings to like explain the budget process, but we don't meet with them for individual budget requests and needs,” said Palumbo. “Unless of course they need the information then we do meet with them. [Clubs] just need to request it on Laser Involvement, we don't need to meet.”
Palumbo says this new system makes it easier for clubs to receive money they need for events or projects. “Now it's way easier for clubs to just request when they need money, so it's easier for clubs to get money, and it's easier for us to give…money so it works out for us in terms of the process,” said Palumbo.
Senior accounting major and Campus Activities Board (CAB) President Victoria Savluk says CAB’s budget decreased, but because they are not funded by SGA, they can not use the new budgeting system. “The budget cuts did have a slight impact on CAB…the CAB budget was slightly altered which did have an impact on what events we could and couldn’t do,” said Savluk. “However, as a group, we were able to make our budget work as we are still able to host our most well-known event.”
Savluk says while CAB was affected by the decreased budget, she does not see this being a problem in the future. “These budget cuts may still have a slight impact on CAB but since we were able to work with our budget this year, I don’t see this being a big problem for CAB in future years.”
Coordinator of Student Activities and Orientation Nathan Kozach said the Finance Committee members have been doing a “really good job” tightening the budget with this new program and that it has helped the board fund “pretty much everything.”
Kozach said the purpose of implementing the new program was not necessarily to reduce cost, but that they have seen less money being wasted.
“It turns out it has been, to an extent, that it has definitely allowed for some clubs to have some larger scale programming because we’re budgeting kind of on a month by month basis…” Kozach said.
Although Kozach said he would love to be able to allow all clubs to run high-expense events, he said that “there’s only so much we can do with less money.”
“Our country’s in a tough financial situation, so there’s…a lot of it is out of Lasell’s power in terms of how much money the whole school has and how much money our department gets,” Kozach said. “Everybody wants money. Everybody wants more money than we have, so we try to do our best to allocate things within our budget so that student clubs and organizations do get a fair enough chunk.”
Kozach said everybody always wants more money, but this new program has helped to enable clubs to do more with the money they are given.
“By simplifying the process, we’re able to kind of put every student on the same playing field, every club, every organization on the same playing field,” Kozach said. “So there’s definitely some equity there. There’s breaking down the barriers, making it easy to do the things that you want to do, which is definitely something that we’re trying to make possible in all facets of how we operate as an office.”