Tue. Jan 25th, 2022

On Tuesday night, representatives of West Chester University’s budget committee presented many of the general and auxiliary fees for the next academic year to the Student Government Association.The presentation by WCU’s Budget Director Lynda Boucher was the “first in the three step process by which fees are approved,” said SGA President Anthony DiJiacomo.

Following the meeting with SGA, the proposed budget will then need to be signed off on by “the Council of Trustees, and last by the Board of Governors, which oversees the entire PASSHE system,” he said.

SGA voted in favor of all but one of the aspects of the new budget, the lone hold out being a proposed flat rate of $20 for all parking violations. This would be a change from the current two tier system of $10 for lesser offenses and $20 for the more severe violations.

Boucher stated that the increase in fines would be “used to fix the existing lots and also to deter inappropriate behavior.”

She also pointed out that this increase would allow the university wide Parking Improvement Fee to remain unchanged from last year.

“This allows us to charge the offenders instead of everyone,” Boucher stated, adding that the goal was to “keep rates lower for everybody.”

SGA voted 28-16 against this change, though it doesn’t actually have the authority to cancel out any parts of the proposed budget. Their vote acts more as a suggestion which Boucher could then take back to the budget committee for further discussion.

Some of the other proposed changes in the budget include a 2.51 percent increase in the cost of traditional North Campus housing. This represents a drop from last year which featured a 4.83 percent increase.

Also, the proposal lists the cost of meals plans rising by on average 1.825 percent. This, again, is down from last term which saw an average increase of 5.86 percent across all meal plan options.

Tuition rates, as well as several other important fees, were not presented to SGA, due to the fact that they had yet to be determined.

Boucher said that the goal of the budget committee was to “provide services while maintaining costs.”

Organization Budgets Finished

SGA Treasurer Matthew South announced that he and the SGA Budget Committee had finished creating the Organizational Budgets from next year. After Spring Break, these budgets will be presented to the Senate as a whole for approval.

Election Updates

Charmane Martin was voted as the new senator representing West Goshen township. Also on Tuesday, Talisha Harris won an SGA Special Assignment Senate seat.

In addition to last week’s listed new senators, “The Quad” failed to include Sarah Miller, who was named the new Senator representing the Off-Campus and Commuter Association (OCCA).

Street Spirit

DiJiacomo outlined a plan that would have various intersections across campus imprinted with the WCU Ram’s head logo. These intersections will feature the logo sealed into the cement in an effort to increase school spirit.

Bylaw Debate

A proposed SGA bylaw change to the executive board election process led to one of the night’s most heated debates. The change would allow the Senate to approve executive board candidates without a University-wide vote in the event they are running unopposed. Some Senators felt that this change would undermine the election process, while others pointed out that holding elections against no one would be a waste of both time and resources.

Eventually, the Senate voted in favor of that particular change, but by the end of the night all proposed changes were tabled until next week.

Colin McGlinchey is a fifth-year student majoring in English with a minor in journalism. He can be reached at QuadEIC@wcupa.edu.

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