SA debates student response to cuts in state portion of budget

    __Pilchen informs SA of proposed responses to budget
    decrease, asks for input from senators__

    At the year’s first Student Assembly meeting Tuesday night, SA President Zach Pilchen ’09 discussed, among other things, charging students a one-time fee of $400 to make up for the 7.5 percent budget cut in the state portion of the College’s budget.
    He also said the College could close Swem at 5 p.m. or eliminate the Washington, D.C. study abroad program to compensate for the cuts.

    p. Senators were most concerned about the possibility of a student surcharge, which was implemented in 2002.

    p. “Anyone that has been approved for a scholarship will get a scholarship,” Pilchen said. “The surcharge is not tuition.”

    p. “If Virginia raised a one to two cent gas tax, we could have avoided the whole thing,” he added.

    p. Senators debated the idea.

    p. “Students are able to apply for secondary loans [to pay for the surcharge] between semesters,” Senator Amanda Rowe ’08 said. “It would be awful, but it can be done.”

    p. Pilchen will represent students Sept. 5 at the Faculty University Priorities Committee where the 7.5 percent cut will be discussed.
    Secretary of Finance Andrew Blasi ’10 also presented a finance investment prospectus report, prepared by Undersecretary of Finance for Investment Matthew Sass ’09. The report addressed what should be done with the College’s excess funds. The senate agreed to discuss the report its the next meeting.

    p. The appointments of secretaries, members of the Review Board and members of the elections committee went fairly quickly because eight students were appointed with a unanimous decision and two students were appointed with a vote of more than two-thirds of the senate. Will Angley ’08, nominated for chairman of the review board, was voted down.

    p. Ironically, as the longest standing member of the review board, Angley will serve as interim chairman until there is a new nomination.

    p. After the long debate on the budget, Sen. Caroline Mullis ’09 said, jokingly, “Can we just fire a bunch of the administrators?”


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