Fun with Funds: The Dawning of a New Year

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ABC has just released a spreadsheet of 2008-2009’s club allocations. (As you might remember, ABC released their 2007-2008 allocations/debt spreadsheet in February, prompting SGB to do the same and creating a minor brouhaha in the process.) So onto the compare-contrast:

The most noticeable budgetary increase is that of Bacchanal and Special Events, which received just $18,000 in initial allocations for 2007-2008 but this year was awarded an envious $75,739. (Here’s hoping — er, demanding? — tickets for next Spring Concert will be free.) Most groups, including the Black Students Organization ($6,229), the Blue and White ($12,075), Helvidius ($5,500) Clefthangers ($1,115), and The Fed ($4,075), among others, received similar allocations to those of last year.

The Society of Automotive Engineers’ allocation shrank from $8,669 to $7,997 — maybe ABC wasn’t as impressed with their homemade car as Bwog was? Philo saw an increase of about $300, up to $1,875 from last year’s $1,510. Varsity Show’s budget remains a mystery shrouded in an enigma, as do those of heritage months.

For your own investigative purposes, last year’s allocations are here and this year’s are here. (Though keep in mind, many of the clubs are recognized by both ABC and SGA and receive dual funding.) And for all the ABC news and updates you’d ever want, visit their new-ish blog.

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  1. meh  

    it should be noted that clubs with very low funding last year ($300 range) range may have had such a low funding level due to their first year in existence. Aren't there rules limiting the first year allocation? this would skew the increase they receive this year.

  2. nice sleuthing bwog

    the tickets for the spring concert were free this year...

    • this post

      never said they weren't

    • JAG  

      yeah. also, just so you know, CU Concerts is now functioning under the "Bachannal/Special Events" umbrella, so the budgets were essentially combined.

      • in the know

        Yup, last year's Special Events ($18,000) and Concerts ($50,000) increased about 11.4% as a combined group, which reflects considerably better programming expectations for next year.

        The real fun in all this will be when it is publicly revealed that [email protected] bowed to SGB's yearlong whining and slashed ABC's allocation for next year, meaning that there will either be little to no money available for appeals or that ABC will spend its expected 09-10 surplus over the course of next year, necessitating a dramatic increase in its allocation for 09-10 or sharp cuts in groups' budgets.

        • hahahaha  

          Finally, a council with a brain. The crime that is the ABC allocation has finally been pegged back. Maybe now the ABC will put its 5-6 digit surplus to use while every other governing board will have some money to spend.

          • well  

            obviously you have no idea what is actually going on with funding here at columbia. the governing boards were designed as a last-line-of-defense should clubs need extra money. the abc surplus is there to prevent clubs from having to ask for money directly from the student councils.....

          • confused  

            why does ABC have a surplus when the other governing boards dont have one? if the surplus is there in case groups need more money, shouldnt non-ABC groups also have that 'last-line-of-defense"

          • Nope  

            your gut reaction is right. ABC has a surplus because ABC was formed out of the councils in the 90's and has cozied up to them ever since. Each year a governing board has gotten cut, ABC got an increase, which they proceeded to hoard.

            Every governing board is just as responsible and valuable as the ABC, but apparently ABC feels it is entitled to special treatment that Community Impact, Club Sports, SGB and the Greeks aren't entitled to (such as a surplus of several thousand dollars).

          • Ehh

            I think that's always been justified by the far more rigorous, representative, and flexible allocation system ABC has in place. Whereas most of the other governing boards simply wait for an allocation, then divide it among their groups at the beginning of the year, ABC spends months in the spring reviewing intense allocation packets from each group, cutting down their requests (which are typically in the $500-700k range) to reasonable figures, and then trying to leave a reserve available to cover group liabilities and appeals in the next year.

            You're entitled to a surplus if you actively manage your funds in order to keep proper fiscal discipline. It's called budgeting, not hoarding. The goal of this is to benefit student life, not throw as many pizza parties as our fees will pay for.

          • Yeah  

            because groups like the Sex Club, AAA, Dance Troupes, Bacchanal, performance groups, etc aren't partying at all, whereas community service groups, Sports teams, Political & Religious groups, etc. are all about the pizza parties.

            Again, it's typical of ABCers to think themselves entitled to ludicrous allocations because they're more bureaucratic (and assume that by making their groups are made to jump through more loopholes, that they're somehow more "responsible") when the reality is that nobody should be hoarding student life fees.

            And don't assume that other governing boards aren't vigilant about cutting group requests down to reasonable levels, and don't spend time making their allocation decisions. In fact, ABC seems to have been the first board to have made their allocation. Chances are other governing boards are putting more thought into their budget packets then eh?

          • stop

            being such a hater. all of the cu governing boards should spend more time thinking about their groups than bashing each other on bwog..

  3. why  

    does mock trial get so much money?

  4. hey bwog!  

    journalism nerd feud between alexandria symnonds and that annoying chick from that mtv show "the paper"


  5. Don't you mean

    SGB, geniuses? It's called proofreading.

  6. well

    i think abc has done an amazing job and will continue to do so. abc puts an almost alarming amount of time into determining groups' allocations each spring.

  7. just fyi  

    Black Students Organization, not "union"

  8. informant

    ABC tends to have a surplus because they have clear articulated guidelines about how money is spent and is conscious not to run a deficit. It budgets for innovative programming and appeals based on historical numbers but these often don't get fully taken up.
    Not sure if the other governing boards have similarly clear guidelines as to fiscal management.

    Also, ABC tends to be careful (sometimes too careful/stingy) about how they distribute money and would rather keep a surplus than throw money away in the last weeks of the semester just to spend everything.

    I don't think ABC ever plans to have a surplus (their allocation requests are a composite of the 150+ clubs request + some overheads) just that clubs don't always spend their full budget and ABC doesn't let them spend money willy-nilly

  9. The problem with ABC

    First and foremost, I find it the most annoying thing that SO much of ABC's budgets are put towards events that involve food. Why is my student life money going towards the payment of food for student groups that in turn only order shitty food that no one actually wants to eat? At least SGB raises a lot of political awareness, Club Sports spends most of their money on competition and equipment costs. And Community Impact puts money towards programs to give to the community.

    Second, the ABC budget surplus is in fact a line item. Year after year, they've asked to have a "surplus" in their allocation from FaCU. I don't see any other governing board ballsy enough to even think this is ok. And this surplus, is not even just a few thousand dollars, try a few TENS OF THOUSANDS. That my friend, is called hoarding.

    their decrease in allocation from FaCU has been long awaited. It's about time it happened.

  10. SAE?

    what is this? SAE works its ass off all year. Hows all-nighters during finals week? We get a car finished, do the best that we ever have at competition, will probably see a surge in involvement next year, have to put up with crazy commodity prices for our stock, have to deal with broken, aging, and insufficient tools, yet we get the complete shaft in terms of funding... I'm not hating on other clubs - we'll maybe heritage months since their probably my favorite events at Columbia ... not.

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