SGA approves tentative budget at general meeting

By Callam Rodya

FROM LEFT: SGA president Samantha Pitzel, VP Issues Casey Lalonde, and VP Services Colleen Keaney. Photo by Callam Rodya.

The SGA Executive convened an annual general meeting on Wednesday afternoon to vote on a projected $285,000 budget for the 2010-2011 school year. The meeting, chaired by SGA president Samantha Pitzel, was attended by some 20 SGA members in room L-239, near the Student Centre.

After some preamble by Pitzel, Casey Lalonde (vice-president, issues), Colleen Keaney (vice-president, services), and Isabelle Legault (office coordinator), SGA executive director Deborah Frankel presented a tentative working budget that would see an estimated $279,000 in student fees and other revenues put towards various SGA programs and services.

SGA Executive Director Deborah Frankel presents the projected 2010-2011 SGA budget. Photo by Callam Rodya.

These expenditures ranged from $155,000 in salaries and benefits for SGA employees, to $13,392 for services including the frosh concert and upcoming charity ball. One particular area of contention among those in attendance was a projected $22,500 expenditure for the Voyageur Athletic Therapy Clinic located in the Ben Avery Physical Education Centre, a service which many attendees raised concerns about for its apparent niche benefit and high cost.

Frankel also announced that the SGA had successfully reduced its insurance policy expenditure from an estimated $30,000 in 2009-2010 to $12,400 for the 2010-2010 year.

Students attend the SGA Annual General Meeting on Wednesday afternoon. Photo by Callam Rodya.

Despite some objections to its tentative nature and some specific expenditures, the budget was passed by those in attendance and will form the basis for the official SGA 2010-2011 budget. Frankel pointed out that the SGA had yet to receive the revenue from student fees described by the budget and that adjustments may be made, details of which would be released at a later time.

Other topics raised during the meeting were the new University-Four Corners bus (see article in the Oct. 7 print edition of Lambda), new furniture for the Student Centre, and the Coffee Club. Legault reminded attendees that Oct. 8 is the final day to opt out of the SGA health plan and described a new online bulletin board for students to post notices and classifieds.

Lambda will continue to follow the SGA 2010-2011 budget as more details emerge.

Callam Rodya