The Stanford Flipside has recently begun a Special Fees petition in order to bypass the ASSU’s rejection of their original budget. The Flipside staff argue that they have decided to include a Segway in their budget as a way to bring to light the absurdity of what they see as other groups’ wasteful spending.
Each year, millions of dollars in special fees are given to a broad array of student groups on campus. This week, the Undergraduate Senate and Graduate Student Council (GSC) will vote on a proposal to reform the process by which these funds are distributed. They should reject efforts to repeal the improvements made last year, but approve a measure to close the loophole that allows students to enjoy free services even if they request ASSU fee refunds.
While most student groups receive funding from ASSU Senate and GSC general fees collected from students, Volunteer Student Organizations (VSOs) must rely on special fees for their larger budgets. As stipulated by the 11th Undergraduate Senate, groups must petition for signatures from 10 to 15 percent of the student body to be on the special fees portion of the spring ballot if they wish to grow their budgets by more than inflation, which is approximately 1.5 percent. The bill under discussion would return the joint by-laws to the way they were before, allowing student groups to grow their budgets up to 10 percent plus inflation without petitioning.
Although the group does a great job of putting on a consistent variety of high quality small performances, when it comes to large performance with big-name artists, they’re somewhat lacking. When was the last time you went to a big-name concert on campus? Or better yet, when was the last time you went to a concert with more than a couple hundred people there?
At its second meeting of the quarter Tuesday, the ASSU Undergraduate Senate discussed reversing a special fees policy enacted by last year’s Senate. The Senate is set to vote on the special fees bill next week, along Constitutional Council and judicial panel pool nominees.
A sharp increase in full refunds, despite low numbers of requests, can have negative effects on student group funding.