Initial funding lower for clubs on campus

By Melissa Prentice

Arizona Daily Wildcat

Clubs are going to have to tighten their belt buckles this year to compensate for less funding from ASUA.

The Associated Students has allocated $10,236 for initial funding with an average of $85.30 going to each of the 120 clubs requesting funds.

Last year, almost 155 clubs were funded at an average of $111 each, said Josh Becker, vice president of clubs and organizations.

"Last year we were able to give more money to clubs because although our budget was lower, we were guaranteed more money from bookstore revenues," Becker said. "This year we had to be tight with the money we gave so we would have money for the rest of the year."

William Kuhn, a member of the appropriations board, said the different make-up of this year's board affected the funding decisions.

"There really is no reason why the funding is lower this year," he said. "We didn't even look at how much clubs were funded last year when we made our decision. There is just a different board this year and a different character of board members."

Kuhn said the club funding process is difficult because the guidelines are so vague.

"There is no formula that determines what amount clubs should be funded, so it's completely up to the discretion of the appropriations board," he said. "We just try to figure out what the needs of the club reasonably are."

In order to receive funding, a club must make a presentation before two appropriation board members, and one member of the Central Coordinating Council. The full seven-member appropriations board then meets and decides which clubs merit funding. The CCC must approve the decision.

This year, the newly formed UA Rescue emergency medical services received $383, which was the highest allocation.

The second highest allocation of $225 was given to Camp Wildcat. And the American Institute of Chemical Engineers received an allocation of $215.

Clubs receiving the lowest amounts were the Malaysian Friendship Club, the Russian Club and the Saguaro Buddhist Association, which were given $25 each.

"Not everyone is going to be happy because most clubs think they are entitled to everything they asked for," Kuhn said. "The purpose of club funding is to give clubs enough to start off so they can be self-sufficient. With over 200 clubs on campus, we can't fully fund all club operation costs."

Robert Daniels, the president of the American Indian Science and Engineering Society, said he is happy with the process even though the club did not get the full amount they asked for.

"The board explained to us that some of the things we asked for fell under special funding, rather than initial funding," he said, adding that he was impressed with the organization of this year's board.

The board's decision was approved Wednesday by the Central Coordinating Council.

Becker said any club members who have questions about the process or the board's decisions should come talk to him or a club advocate.

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