Scrutiny was leveled on members of the BUC Fund Committee during the ETSU Student Government Association Senate’s second BUC Fund session of the year on Oct. 6.
After the meeting, BUC Fund Committee Chairman Sen. Garrett Parks sent an email to senators stating that “the BUC Fund committee received an uncomfortable and unprofessional level of criticism in the Senate meeting.”
Parks said the “email isn’t accusatory of the entire Senate; it is an email to make aware the inconsiderate senators of their unjust behavior and to discourage the continuation of such.”
Controversy began when senators questioned the reasoning used by the BUC Fund Committee to justify reduced levels of funding for certain organizations, particularly Carter, Stone and Powell halls as well as Hall Councils: Tri-Halls, Lucy, Luntsford and Dossett.
“With this organization [Carter, Stone and Powell Halls], everything was constitutional, fundable and a great event,” Sen. Brandon Johnson said.
“However, the committee meeting minute notes state they just cut their funding because the organization said they could still do it with half funding and the committee wants to be conservative.”
Johnson said that while he considers himself the “most fiscally conservative” senator in SGA, the senate set a precedent at their first BUC Fund session when they considered funding using a “first come, first serve” mentality, which is considered constitutional.
“Honestly, when the committee and I spoke about this, we were all torn as well,” Sen. Molly Jones said. “I was looking at what they were requesting the money for and how it would be used, and their application fell short because they were unaware of what they needed to spend the money on.”
While certain senators backed the committee’s logic on recommending less money than requested, others claimed it was unconstitutional and “opinionated” on the part of the committee.
“If anyone can point to a part of Title Five where it says we just get to slash on the basis of how we feel about the application, I would love to see it,” Sen. Kevin Carlson said. “I’m a little insulted that we are just going back on precedent that we set at the last meeting where we decided if it meets the Title Five criteria, then we fund it.”
Organizations that applied and received full requested amount were:
- International Student Association for $700
- Dance Marathon at ETSU for $3,700
- Phi Sigma Pi for $520
- Hispanic American Community Alliance for $3,140
- Honors College Student Council for $2,130 of $2,130.57
- Alpha Phi Alpha for $900
- Hall Councils: Tri-Halls, Lucy, Luntsfod and Dossett for $1,600
Organizations that were awarded less or no money were:
- Shades of Africa $2,000 of $4,000
- Alpha Sigma Lambda for $1,250 of $4,961.75
- Carter, Stone and Powell Halls for $350 of $700
- Student Photographer’s Association $0 of $2,800
- College of Public Health Student Council for $4,300 of $10,185.90
- BUC Ultimate for $0 of $500
- Oral Health Student Association for $2,110 of $2,614.43