Student Government donating excess money to general scholarship fund

By Rachel Aretakis

The Student Government Senate approved a constitutional amendment last Wednesday that will donate excess money from the budget to the general scholarship fund.

Any funds more than $60,000 from the previous administration will be donated, said SG President Micah Fielden.

“We think the best thing we can do is that if we have extra money,” Fielden said, “we should donate to student scholarships.”

The left over money rolls over to the next administration’s budget. Senate President Annie Tiu said on average, there is a $60,000 turnover from year to year.

“We didn’t want to make it so that we weren’t turning over enough (money), in case there’s a year with unexpected costs,” Tiu said.

By allowing the next year’s administration to have the $60,000, it is enough cushion room in case something happens and the money is needed, she said. Each year the excess money varies from $10,000 to $120,000, Fielden said.

“I don’t like spending money, especially unnecessarily,” he said.

Fielden and Vice President Nikki Hurt have been discussing this for the past few months. Together with the Senate, they worked on a way to do something beneficial with the money.

Tiu said the senators wanted to amend the Constitution so future administrations wouldn’t have too much extra money and make up new programs just to use the budget.

“I just really think it’s good so that new administrations will know every year how much money they are working with,” Tiu said. “As much as I support new student programs, we are going to have an increase of students coming to UK, so there will be an increase of the budget. Just because we have the money, doesn’t mean we need to make up programs for them.”

Fielden said SG is conscious of the money it spends.

“It’s good for people to know that the people who have been elected are being responsible and that we don’t just waste money,” Fielden said. “We don’t do stuff that is inappropriate.”

Other than the scholarship fund, the money can also go to non-student groups, he said.

Tiu said senators decided that the money could remain in SG if there is a larger project that needs the money.

Eight people have to unanimously agree on the project — the president, vice president, senate president and the five members of the summer senate.

“We like that it’s a direct way of giving the money to the students to who it belongs to,” she said. “It takes it out of our hands, it’s not SGA’s (money) … our responsibility is to make sure that money goes back to the students somehow.”