By Joseph Barrios
Arizona Daily Wildcat
The ASUA Supreme Court voted unanimously last night that greek chapters on campus are eligible to receive funding from student government, overturning an earlier decision.
About 15 students attended last night's court hearing, held in the College of Law building.
The court's decision stems from an appeal by the Interfraternity Council and the Panhellenic Association to a legislative bill that states that greek chapters could not receive funding from the Associated Students of the University of Arizona because they discriminate on the basis of sex.
The bill, written by Sen. Naomi Mudge and Dan McGee, a member of the Graduate and Professional Student Council, was voted into policy on March 24 by ASUA's Central Governing Council.
"I think the greeks really took a stand here," said Vicki Sjong, president of Panhellenic.
We're just asking them to let (greeks) get to the Appropriations Board," said Fred Thiele, a third-year law student representing IFC and Panhellenic. "They might have some very good and valuable programs that this campus can use."
The ASUA Appropriations Board is responsible for distributing money to various organizations around campus recognized by the Department of Student Programs.
And all clubs and organizations on campus eligible to apply for student government funding must be recognized by Student Programs.
Three years ago, Student Programs changed to recognize campus chapters.
Thiele said not all fraternities and sororities have the large membership and financial support to carry out all their activities. He cited Alpha Phi Alpha, a fraternity with only four members.
Josh Grabel, ASUA federal relations director who represented Mudge, said during the hearing that if the bill was voted down, all parties should be willing to meet and discuss the appropriation guidelines for next year.
The court said that the ASUA must abide by state and federal constitutions when deciding on legal matters. The court ruled because the state upholds the rights of fraternities and sororities on campus, ASUA must abide.
Richard Shaughnessy, president of Alpha Kappa Lambda, said he was glad AKL served as the "catalyst" for the decision.
Alpha Kappa Lambda asks the Appropriations Board on Jan. 31 for $1,000 to attend a leadership conference in Berkeley, Calif. The board approved $340.
The Central Governing Council voted at the Feb. 3 meeting to approve the funding.
Then, the approval of Mudge's and McGee's bill counteracted the first decision.
Wendy Anderson, GPSC member and former member of the Appropriations Board, said during her term,the board denied three greek chapters funding.
She said last night that greek chapters should be allowed to ask for funding because they serve the campus.
"I think that the greeks are trying to do more outreach," she said. Read Next Article