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Budget motion fails to pass

Liz Harter and Ashley Charnley | Thursday, October 9, 2008

The Saint Mary’s Board of Governance (BOG) voted Wednesday against passing the Student Government Association’s (SGA) budget, a motion discussed last week at its meeting.

The motion, which needed 16 votes to receive the two-thirds majority, did not carry with a 15-9 vote. Gruscinski said the motion will be presented to BOG again next week.

The vote took place because it was brought to the Executive Board’s attention that BOG might be required to give final approval to the budget as directed by the SGA Constitution, student body president Mickey Gruscinski said.

“There’s a discrepancy in the Constitution,” student body vice president Sarah Falvey said. “In some places it says the execs approve it as the budgeting committee and in some it says that Board of Governance has a say.”

Gruscinski read the section of the Constitution about the authority and responsibility of BOG in question.

“Once approved by the Executive Board, provide final approval for the distribution of funds by approving the Executive Treasurer’s Student Government Association Budget,” she read.

The meeting was then open to discussion on the budget, during which executive treasurer Mo Weaver said that no clubs, organizations or students asking for co-sponsorships would receive any money until the budget is passed.

“Just to let you know, there are a lot of processes that go into getting money,” she said. “If this doesn’t go through, the soonest money can get to you students is November.”

Falvey announced that next week’s BOG meeting will not be an open forum as originally planned.

“In light of the fact that the budget didn’t pass, we need to be able to conduct business,” Falvey said. “We’ll be meeting at 9 to go over business.”

The Board then discussed the fact that posters advertising events the Straight and Gay Alliance (SAGA) has planned for National Coming Out Week are being torn down and vandalized around campus.

“This is vandalism, this is against student’s rights, against the first amendment, it goes against Dr. Martin Luther King’s quote that ‘a threat to justice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere,'” Gruscinski said.

Women’s Issues commissioner Becki Faunce said the vandalism is occurring primarily in LeMans Hall, with people writing negative comments on the posters.

Gruscinski said the Executive Board will be drafting a resolution stating the student government’s opinion on the topic, which will be presented to BOG next week to vote on.

In other BOG news:

uAs a part of Saint Mary’s National Coming Out Week, there will be a panel discussion at Dalloways at 6 p.m., Faunce said. Faculty, students and alumni will be speaking at the event hosted by SAGA.