Senate approves more than half of SG special request budget to fund initiatives

Justin Chandler Porter

photo by Catherine Byerly

Much of the $150,000 allocated to Student Government for special requests has already been spent, said Student Body Treasurer William Namen.

Namen said between funding the Fassi-Naughton administration’s free printing and intramural initiatives, more than half of the special request budget has been spent for the fiscal year, which began July 1.

Because the money SG uses and the Senate allocates comes from the activity and service fee, Namen funding the initiatives will not increase tuition.

Namen said each administration has a different idea of what is fiscally responsible. He said the Fassi-Naughton administration’s idea is to use all the resources available in a responsible way.

Student Body President Carlo Fassi said, due to the limited amount of time provided to SG administrations, much of the work goes toward initiatives previous administrations were unable to finalize.

“Their vision is just as important as this year’s SG representatives,” Fassi said.

Fassi said he will continue to pursue the accomplishments set out by previously elected student leaders, while offering some of his own ideas.

SG’s second budget is the fund balance, which Namen said is an additional $1.8 million in general reserve funds. He said $700,000 of that balance goes toward SG scholarships, while $300,000 goes toward operational costs and emergencies.

Namen said this balance is designed to keep the university running in case of an emergency, like a hurricane.

The remaining $800,000 is the general fund balance. Namen said these are sweep-up funds from the previous year. At the end of the year, remaining funds go into an account that generates interest, which goes toward SG scholarships.

The Free Printing Program started under the Fassi-Naughton administration and allows 25 free prints for students over the Fall semester.

Senate President Zak Varshovi said the free prints were loaded onto all Osprey 1Cards over the summer and can be used at any of UNF’s printing stations.

Namen said $53,000 was allocated for prints. He said, within the first two weeks, more than 80 percent of the student body had used at least one free print.

Fassi said his administration will oversee the program to determine if the money will be sufficient for future semesters.

“It’s a great success,” Namen said. “I hope the administration continues to fund it — as well as the next administration.”

Fassi said his administration desired to provide campus athletics with additional amenities and a scorekeeper.

He said the university would hire a student to keep track of hits, runs, goals, etc., while earning money and experience on the field.

Namen said the student-held position would be less of a scorekeeper and more of a statistician.

Namen said about $23,000 was passed through the budget and allocations committee for new field-equipment, including bleachers, scoreboards and pylons. That, and the $11,000 for a statistician, comes to a total of $34,957.79.

“The focus is to make an enhanced intramural system, while bringing more competition,” Name said.

The Senate approved and passed the program Sept. 24.

The Fassi-Naughton administration also lobbied for additional ATMs on campus.

Namen said Bank of America ATMs will be on campus within the year. He said they will be situated by Building 8, near other ATMs, such as Wells Fargo and Community First.

Another initiative seeks to bring more fans and school spirit to men’s basketball games.

SG-for-3 was an SG athletics initiative under the Brockelman-Warner administration and continues with the current administration. During men’s basketball games, if a three-point shot were made, an SG-for-3 T-shirt will be thrown into the crowd.

Namen said SG handed out about 500 SG-for-3 shirts last year.

Other initiatives the Fassi-Naughton administration satisfied include a new mobile app, enhancements to campus dining and the new shuttle to the St. Johns Town Center.

Email Justin Chandler Porter at [email protected]