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The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

SGA back on track financially

Dear Grinnellians,

As we reported at the start of the semester, SGA inherited a significant deficit. We are happy to report that SGA is well on track to return to a fiscally sound state. Your cooperation and support throughout this process were vital and very much appreciated. By pursuing budget cuts and spending limitations, we feel confident about our finances for this semester and next. Because this process is collaborative, we feel it is important to keep you updated on the status of your SGA budget.

This semester, we reduced our budget by nine percent in order to make up for the deficit caused by last semester. The reduction still leaves us with a semester budget of 180,800 dollars, only 7,000 dollars less than the Spring ’13 budget, due to an increase in the student population and corresponding student activity fee. We are now on pace to meet our under-allocated budget and almost make up the entire deficit with an extra reserve cushion in one semester. SGA also cut internal expenses and instituted cost-cutting measures that expand the percentage of our budget devoted to student programming. We have learned important lessons that we hope will not be forgotten by future Cabinets or the community, regardless of budgetary pressures.

While we sought to rectify the deficit as soon as possible, we do not want to discourage overall student interest in starting groups, hosting events, attending conferences and initiating diverse programming. We appreciate the seriousness with which students are submitting budgets this semester and, as we secure our good financial standing, we want to reassure students that funds are available for well-conceived, well-planned and well-promoted events of all sorts!

We encourage any student to visit Natalie [ACE], Aaron [VACE], Victor [Films], Moira [Concerts], Sam [Service] or other cabinet members during their office hours or via email with budget proposals and ideas. In addition, our Diversity and Outreach Coordinator, Clare, will host a session at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 16 about how to put on an event, submit a budget, start a group and get involved in SGA.

In an effort to keep the community informed of our status, we have pushed aggressively for more transparent budgeting, online budget applications and instantly accessible spending figures of all our budgets. The most recent report on our spending, as well as recommendations from our treasurers, can be found at Budget cuts were a necessary, yet altogether short-term, response to our group’s deeper concern for SGA accountability. As your Cabinet, we take this very seriously and look forward to continued communications with you and improvements to the system. As always, please email your questions and concerns to [sgaprez].

Thank you for your engagement,

SGA Cabinet 2013-2014

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