University of Wisconsin’s student government released its judiciary decision to deny funding to Collegians for a Constructive Tomorrow after the organization was denied eligibility earlier this year.
Student Judiciary announced its decision yesterday evening, after the group appealed to the branch on the grounds of a Student Services Finance Committee viewpoint neutrality violation.
CFACT, which according to SSFC Chair Ellie Bruecker has been denied eligibility and appealed for the past four years, lost their appeal again, as SJ ultimately sided with SSFC on the decision.
Associated Students of Madison spokesperson, David Gardner said the organization appealed to SJ claiming inconsistency with SSFC’s formulated direct services percentages, which distinguish eligible groups.
Eligible groups must prove to have 50.1 percent of resources allocated towards a direct service.
Although CFACT contended SSFC did not articulate the percentages clearly, according to the SJ decision, the “burden of the proof was on the petitioner,” CFACT, and not the responsibility of SSFC.
According to Gardner, CFACT’s application was modeled after different eligible organizations, but it still failed to produce the adequate percentages of direct service.
However, Brueker said she believes the organization has applied with the same documentation over the years, but she acknowledged CFACT has seen change in appeals.
Previously, eligibility was denied on the grounds that CFACT had committed an intentional policy violation in the last four years, Bruecker said in an email to The Badger Herald. She added this year, the violation was no longer relevant, but CFACT does not fit the direct service criteria under their current model.
However, despite CFACT’s loss, Gardner said the case would promote further transparency in SSFC eligibility decisions and percentage breakdowns.
“The ruling creates more transparency for SSFC,” Gardner said. “The one improvement.”
Bruecker, said she was glad about SJ’s decision. In reaffirming SSFC’s decision as there was no evidence to support the viewpoint neutrality violation, she said she agreed with Gardner.
According to Bruecker, SSFC will make some adjustments in effort to increase transparency.
“SSFC will need to adjust our standing rules to ensure that members are more detailed in their explanations of their calculations, which I think is appropriate,” Bruecker said.