General Student Service Fund’s student groups voiced their feedback and criticism of this year’s Associated Students of Madison budget process Monday at a mixer sponsored by the Student Services Finance Committee.
SSFC Chair Brandon Williams said the hostile appearance of SSFC and the lack of approachability for students presenting their budgets was the biggest criticism he received.
“A different dynamic forms when somebody has to bring decisions on their money,” Williams said.
Tina Trevi?o-Murphy, director of the Campus Women’s Center, said she felt disrespected by SSFC throughout her interaction with the group and believes leaders in SSFC could use leadership development.
Trevi?o-Murphy said SSFC has a tendency when looking at all the budgets from the different student groups to get caught up in the numbers in a budget and forget the services they provide.
She said she feels SSFC members look down on groups and think students who do not know the rules and nuances of SSFC are stupid.
CWC was denied funding from SSFC this year on a number of separate occasions.
“[The SSFC rules for budgets] are contributing to a systematic suppression of student groups,” Trevi?o-Murphy said.
She said CWC does the grunt work of providing services to women, which are often emotionally demanding.
Williams said the mixer went well.
“The best thing we can do is look inward and do the best we can to be approachable and pass that onto future committee,” Williams said.
After the mixer, SSFC broke into subcommittees, one of which discussed a non-arbitrary way to decide chair stipends that, if approved, would be put in the ASM bylaws.
SSFC Secretary Matt Manes led the discussion, and his committee, comprised of six members of SSFC, decided on two possible ways to determine stipends, which will be directly tied to tuition.
One option proposed by Student Council Secretary Kurt Gosselin is to have that year’s SSFC chair estimate a reasonable amount for tuition and then have Student Council check the budget.
The second proposed way to decide on stipends was to set the number for the current year’s tuition and factor in any known increases, such as the Madison Initiative for Undergraduates.
The subcommittee will submit its recommendations to Student Council March 18.