Following a contentious debate between members of Student Services Finance Committee Monday, the group agreed to continue to fund Live Free, a student recovery-based group through University Health Services.
Under ASM’s current bylaws, Live Free is prohibited from using segregated fees from the Associated Students of Madison’s budget designated for UHS.
The same time allotment is used by Live Free and UHS staff to collaborate and cross-advise students when applicable.
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The point of contention that arose in the meeting was if Live Free and ASM — both of which have separate segregated fee budgets within student government — were overlapping each other’s specified budgets during these meetings.
University advisor Jack Meischen said many members of SSFC were concerned that Live Free was directly receiving funding from UHS and vice versa, thus costing students double the amount of money to use these advising services.
Following this point, SSFC members proposed a clarification or amendment to current bylaws with Live Free, specifically that the advising meetings with UHS do not count as an overlap of funding, Rep. Jordan Madden said.
“Do we really want to be the overarching hand that tells students how to spend their private time with their advisors?” Madden asked.
SSFC Chair Jordan Gaal said changing bylaws does not solve current problems, but only postpones them.
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SSFC members also requested further information from Live Free as to their exact purpose and fees allocation within the campus to clarify funding miscommunication, Rep. Dylan Resch said.
Rep. Zaakir Abdul-Wahid raised the question of how students would receive proper and affordable mental health services without Live Free.
“If LiveFree is unable to work with UHS, how are we going to be able to make sure students have the safety, sensitivity and support they need?” Abdul-Wahid said.
The committee agreed Live Free was not in violation of ASM’s bylaws as there was no liquid transaction of money between UHS and Live Free during these advisory meetings, Gaal said.
Ultimately, the committee voted 9-2-2 in favor of LiveFree’s eligibility to continue their services on campus through the next fiscal year.
Greater University Tutoring Services and Sex Out Loud presented their eligibility hearings, both of which will be voted upon at a later date.