Budget request process for student organizations modified

Student+governments+new+budget+guidelines+will+require+clubs+to+submit+financial+requests+at+designated+times%2C+as+opposed+to+every+week.

Photo by Pierson White

Student government’s new budget guidelines will require clubs to submit financial requests at designated times, as opposed to every week.

In the midst of ongoing changes to the structure of Student Government, the Budget Guidelines Ad Hoc committee has successfully passed modifications to the budget request process for student clubs and organizations. 

Michael Butler ‘22, Student Government treasurer for the 2021- 2022 year and a member of the Ad Hoc committee, explained that the modifications to the budget guidelines were the result of overspending and lack of long-term planning on the part of student organizations

“What we want to avoid is having sort of just last-minute requests from groups that really we aren’t equipped to handle,” Butler said. “A big part of this is that, if groups come to us, ask for something two days before, we may not always be able to follow through on that.”

According to Jordan Shaibani ‘24, treasurer-elect, the recent changes would mandate that clubs submit budget reports each semester detailing their expenses. The clubs will have to request Student Government allocated money within specific time frames, as opposed to the current process where they can request funding any week.

Right now, clubs submit their annual budget requests at the beginning of the year, but these plans are supplemented by the weekly requests for additional funds for timely events. Shaibani explained that clubs occasionally submit last-minute requests for events or materials that could be pre-planned, such as holiday parties or team shirts.

“But if there are extenuating circumstances, we’re always available to be able to approve those budgets,” she said.

Shaibani stated that the goal of the new modifications, beyond consistent planning and reduction of overspending, is to improve clarity for club members requesting funds.

“We get a lot of the same questions from people about how to submit requests,” she said. “What time requests are due, we have people coming into weekly budget meetings, kind of asking for the same thing.”

Shaibani will be hosting an information session for anyone interested in learning more about the specifics of the new process in order to minimize any difficulties associated with the transition. The session will be on Tuesday in Limburg Theater at 3 p.m.

“We just really want to be able to increase transparency,” she said. “I’m going to be hosting info sessions as treasurer to explain the new budget guidelines, what’s expected of people and how the process works to sort of alleviate any sort of further confusion.”

In terms of plans for the future, Butler stated that the guidelines are acting as a foundation that is subject to be built upon.

“I think things may be shifted around the future,” Butler said. “I think that’s just something that comes with trial and error. I have confidence in budget committees going forward that they’re gonna really implement this well and do things as they see fit.”

Disclaimer: Editor-in-Chief Lucie Lagodich ‘22 is Sustainability Director of Student Government, and assistant news editor Trebor Maitin ‘24 is a member of the Public Relations and Marketing Committee. Neither contributed writing or editing to this article.