SA to audit student activity fee spendings

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March 16, 2010

3:07 AM

The Financial Transparency Act passed unanimously at the College of William and Mary Student Assembly Senate’s March 2 meeting.

The bill will allow the SA to create the positions of two new Student Assembly Auditors. These auditors will be selected by the Joint Facilitation Committee.

“For people who are interested in the position, it could be a really rewarding experience,” SA Chairman Ben Brown ’11 said.

The auditors’s primary function will be to review how the College spends its Student Activities Fee. They will work with the administration to gather relevant financial data and then report the data to the student body.

Brown said that the merit of creating a new position — instead of giving this responsibility to the Executive Department of Finance — is that these individuals could devote their time to one task. Reviewing of these expenditures will be the auditors’ sole responsibility.

According to the Financial Transparency Act, the auditor positions were created because “students deserve to know where every cent of their money is going.”

The SA will make it a priority that this financial information is available to students online.

Secretary of Finance Fayfay Shang ’11 gave a financial update report to the SA.

According to Shang, the SA currently has $161,000 in its consolidated reserve, reduced from the $223,308 budget at the beginning of the academic year.

From the $60,000 budgeted for activities and events, the Department of Finance has appropriated $18,317 to fulfill requests from student organizations. $7,414.17 of this money has been reimbursed to those students who have brought receipts to the Department of Finance.

The SA also unanimously passed the Potentially Necessary eBallot Upgrade Act, budgeting $400 to fund the integration of the student election online voting system into the Blackboard Academic Suite.

The bill seeks the cooperation of the administration to create an independent group of students to run future SA elections.

“This bill ensures that [the independent group] would have the easiest possible time running the elections,” Sen. Betty Jeanne Manning ’12 said.

The SA confirmed three nominees, who were appointed by President Sarah Rojas ’10, to the Election Commission. Ray Ciabattoni ’10, Jill Olszewski ’12 and Brad Sipe ’10 were approved by unanimous consent.

“I know each of them and am confident in their abilities,” Sen. Brittany Fallon ’11 said.

Upcoming business includes discussion of the Consolidated Reserve Use It or Lose It Act, a bill that would limit the money in the SA consolidated reserve to $100,000.

Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs Mark Constantine announced that the off-campus housing fair will be held today in the Sadler Center Tidewater ballroom.

Constantine said the fair is an effort by the administration to help students who have chosen to live off-campus for the coming year learn about their housing options. Property owners in the Williamsburg area will be available to answer student questions.The fair will last from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m, and food will be provided.

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