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The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


LGBT supporters speak out to SSFC

In a room packed with members and supporters of the University of Wisconsin Lesbian, Gay, Bi and Transsexual group, the Student Service Finance Committee carefully went over and debated the budget requests for several groups once again late into Monday night.

The meeting began with a 45-minute open forum which was overwhelmingly dominated by speeches in favor of the LGBT and the Sex Out Loud groups.

“There’s lots of people in this room who are straight, and they’re here to support us,” said supporter Chris Johnson. “What we’re asking for, as far as a full-time advisor, is not out of line.”

LGBT member John Alaniz agreed, “We cannot address a lot of the needs that we need to address. That is why we need a full-time advisor.”

However, LGBT supporters did not get their wish.

Rep. Jason Davis argued that other organizations “thrive and flourish” with the benefits of full-time positions.

Yet Rep. Ryan Nichols, who proposed the amendment, argued that, “I’m not a big fan of the ‘keeping up with the Joneses’ argument.”

The position was then eliminated by a vote of 6-5.

With the lowering of hourly pay rates to student positions and a cut to funds allotted toward computer equipment, the LGBT budget was finally approved unanimously at $51,021.

Sex Out Loud, a group that works to promote sex education and communication, faced relatively few cuts to its budget, partially due to the strong support of Rep. Aaron Werner.

“I know students who go to get free condoms and stick around and learn things,” he said, as the committee debated whether to cut SOL’s supply budget by $2,000.

SOL advisor Dana Alder agreed, adding, “The demand for SOL services is high.”

SOL’s budget was approved at $42,419 by a vote of 9-2.

Polygon, an umbrella engineering group, was unanimously approved for a budget of $6,000 with little debate.

Also requesting budgeting was the American Indian group Wunk Sheek, represented by co-president Casey Brown.

Citing the need for entertainers for the group’s pow-wows, Brown remarked, “A few years ago I might have given them horses, one of my wives and some beads. Today we need money.”

Wung Sheek looked to increase its budget mostly in the areas of postage, computer software and travel.

When asked by Nichols about the other services the group provides, Brown stated his accessibility to all campus groups. “Whenever they need the Indian I usually get the call. These groups ask me to speak, say a prayer or have the drums available.”

The College of Agricultural and Life Sciences also asked for budget raises. Most of their requests centered around new equipment needed at the Stock Pavilion due to last year’s E. coli scare. The group also plans to add a more comprehensive webmaster position.

The Campus Women’s Center also appeared before the committee, touting its wide range of activities and discussions, or, as member Vickki Bomben put it, “Everything from pay equity to belly dancing.”

When asked by Nichols about the group’s openness to male members, Bomben explained, “It’s impossible to forget about the fact that men are an aspect of every woman’s life.”
Budgets for Wung Sheek, CALS student council and the Campus Womens’ Center will all be submitted to the SSFC for final approval Wednesday.

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