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Student government allocated $17.7 million in student fees for the 2013-14 fiscal year to 15 CU Boulder departments Wednesday and Thursday nights in an annual public discussion that lasted over 12 hours.
The total budget is higher than fiscal year 2012-13 and will result in an estimated increase of $5.50-6.50 in student fees next school year.
Only one department walked away from the hearings with less funding than fiscal year 2012-13. Student Group Funding Board proposed its own cuts and declined 25 percent in funding.
After hours of group decision-making, however, four members of the 18-person Legislative Council voted against the final budget.
Engineering Co-Sen. Daniel Hansen said he was satisfied that the council designated money to areas of maximum benefit to students, but could not vote for the final budget because money was left sitting unused in banks.
“There were several instances where enhancements were granted – they increase student fees – when it would have been far more appropriate to allocate funds from accounts such as fund balances and SOR,” Hansen said of CU’s Supplemental Operational Reserve, money reserved in a bank. “It’s fiscally irresponsible to leave massive sums of money in accounts where the interest does not even match inflation and then ask students to pay more.”
The fee allocations grew by over $3 million from 2012-13 mainly due to Rec Center renovations already underway. A total of $2,915,729 was allocated to the Rec directly from fee money that students approved in the spring of 2011. Additionally, the Rec received $4,468,755 for regular operations and maintenance, $307,106 less than its entire funding from student fees last year. The Rec Center‘s total budget reached $7,384,484.
The other big-ticket item on this and most years’ budgets was the University Memorial Center, which increased in funding by $434,580 to a total of $6,062,930 in student fee dollars.
CU NightRide, a service of the UMC, has reached its capacity and a new vehicle is required to be added every seven years, junior Shane Hedges said of the program that serves thousands of CU students each weekend. Either a Dodge Caravan or hybrid like the proposed Toyota Camry will be added to the NightRide fleet in 2013.
Additionally, the UMC asked and received enhancement funding for an events planner and equipment updates for Friday Night Film Series and Sneak Peeks. Senior Heather Starbuck, a manager of the film series, said she had to turn away an undisclosed Seth Rogen film at the end of February because the film could not be shown using CU’s technology.
Other notable funding allocations and enhancements decided for fiscal year 2013-14:
Contact CU Independent Copy Editor Alison Noon at Alison.firstname.lastname@example.org.