Senate, Treasury recommend to fund $0 for new office space
Student Union Senate and Treasury recommended to fund $0 of the administration’s $100,000 request for new office furnishings Tuesday.
The administration had initially asked for $300,000 to pay for “furnishings and finishings,” but later reduced this request to $100,000—specifically for furniture—after sensing hesitation on the part of Senate and Treasury representatives.
The money would have come out of SU’s savings account, which began with leftover SU funds from the 2005 fiscal year and currently holds $369,858.75. The fund has been tapped into by past Student Union executives to pay for office upgrades, and over $87,000 was spent on furniture for the current SU office in the past two years.
Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Rob Wild noted that the funds were set aside for projects of this nature, but added that the project would continue regardless of whether SU chose to allocate funds for it.
Executive Director of Campus Life Leslie Heusted said that SU will have input on their new office space but noted that funding would have increased the extent to which SU could choose its own furnishings.
“I think students need a strong voice,” she said. “I do think giving the contribution from Student Union [would allow] a little more flexibility.”
SU’s office, currently located in a two-story space on the first and second floors of the Danforth University Center, will be consolidated to a second floor space this summer as part of a series of moves occurring in the DUC.
Senate and Treasury voted to recommend to SU President and sophomore Sydney Robinson to fund $0, a recommendation Robinson plans to stick by.
Senate and Treasury representatives felt that funding ought to go toward students specifically.
“Of the feedback I’ve gotten, it’s been overwhelmingly negative,” senator and sophomore Joey Vettiankal said. “I think this fund should be used for something more student driven.”
“I’m a little disappointed in the voice that we’ve had in the process,” sophomore Katie Wood, a Treasury representative and budget committee chair, said. “I’d like to see that [money] go more toward student activities or the Opportunity Fund.”