The Student Government Association presented a special allocations workshop Wednesday to teach students and organizations how to request and receive funding through the senate.
President of the Organization and Finance Committee Sen. Tyler Hansberry wants to educate students on the proper steps to gain funding.
“The workshop is to get everything out on the table so that people can know the laws and rules,” he said.
According to Hansberry, OFC plans to make a number of changes in the process for funding. Along with new online applications http://studentactivities.famu.edu/sga/index.cfm/accounting-office/forms-documents/, a bill passed by Hansberry requires all requests for funding to go through the committee before being voted on by the senate.
The bill also requires organization representatives to go through an interview process that has been increased from 15 minutes to 30 minutes. The time increase will give OFC time to ask more detailed questions.
The committee also wants organizations to fundraise and look to outsourcing for funding as a backup plan in the event that funding is not provided through the senate or not enough funding is provided.
With enrollment decreasing this fall, the budget has faced a reduction in resources this year from $3.3 million to $2.5 million. The senate will have to allocate funding to organizations on a tighter budget.
Alexandria Brown, a third-year business administration student from Baltimore and member of the National Council of Negro Women, said she wants the senate to take the clubs’ requests for special allocations funding into consideration when deciding what to approve or deny.
“I expect funds to be properly distributed,” she said. “And we all have a fair chance for getting funds.”
Senate President Tonnette Graham said it could take up to six weeks for students to receive funding after the request has been approved. Graham also said the senate will be doing everything by the books to prevent any errors or misuse of funding.
“There is no room for error,” Graham said. “We have to go back and fix it now so that it doesn’t happen in the future.”
Organizations that receive special allocations funds will not be allowed to charge a fee for any events because the money is provided by activity and service fees students pay as part of tuition.
Larenz Johnson, a third-year English student from Tampa and FAMU Gospel Choir president, thought the workshop was very beneficial.
“The information provided will help make the transition from fall to spring easier,” Johnson said. “Letting us know when to apply for funding so we can apply earlier will make a big difference when it comes to planning events.”
Another workshop will be held in December to inform students on how to be included on the physical budget for the following academic school year.