FinApp OKs fee increase, GUSA to vote on SAFE reform this Sunday

After weeks of town hall meetings, the GUSA Senate’s Finance and Appropriations Committee unanimously passed Student Activities Fee Endowment reform legislation on Wednesday night. The GUSA Senate will vote on the SAFE reform bill on Sunday.

The proposed reform will increase the student activities fee to $62.50 per semester during the 2011-2012 academic year. During the 2012-2013 academic year, the fee will be raised to $75 per semester. After that, the fee will increase indefinitely at the standard rate of inflation.

Currently, students pay a fee of $50 per semester. According to a FinApp Committee report, the fee generates approximately $630,000 per academic year.

SAFE reform will allocate the whole of the student activities fee to “student life,” according to a report published by the FinApp Committee. Under current University policies, half of the fee is allocated to a student activities endowment. (The reform will also allocate the endowment’s interest.) The endowment, which was created in 2001, was originally meant to reach $10 million by 2011, generate self-sustaining interest, and replace the fee. However, the endowment is worth only $1.9 million today, thanks to economic decline.

If passed on Sunday by the GUSA Senate, SAFE reform will then face a campus-wide referendum. To pass referendum, a majority of at least 2,000 voting students must support the reform. Barring a “no” vote from the GUSA Senate, the referendum is scheduled to be held between December 7 through December 9, according to Senator Greg Laverriere, chair of the FinApp Committee.

“If approved, student life will finally be given the needed financial support to ensure continued growth and health for years to come,” the report reads.

“Planning for the Future,” FinApp’s report on SAFE reform:

GUSA: SAFE reform

11 Comments on “FinApp OKs fee increase, GUSA to vote on SAFE reform this Sunday

  1. Wait, is no one seriously opposing this stupid rate hike? COME ON PEOPLE IT’S OUTRAGEOUS! I do not agree giving money to the pointless piece of shit that is GUSA.

  2. @WTF

    You know full well that this is not giving money to GUSA. GUSA has pledged to freeze its budget for a year as a sign of good faith and because, honestly, it doesn’t need much more money to do what it does.

    If you vote Yes on the referendum, for $25 dollars a year more you will be giving nearly twice as much money to:

    ACS Relay for Life of Georgetown University, Action:Central Asia, African Society of Georgetown, The African Society of Georgetown, AIDS Coalition, Aikido Club, Alpha Phi Omega, Amnesty International, Anime Club, Armenian Students Association, Asian American Students Association, Ballet Folklórico Mexicano de Georgetown, Ballroom Dance Club, Best Buddies, Black Students Alliance, Black Theatre Ensemble, Blanket New Orleans, Boxing, Breast Cancer Outreach, Caring for Children with Cancer, Catholic Daughters, Catholic Student Association, Center for Social Justice Advisory Board (CSJ), Chinese Student Alliance (CSA), Class of 2011, Club Baseball, Club Boxing, Club Filipino, Club Sports Board, College Academic Council, College Democrats, College Republicans, Cristo Rey Tutoring, Dance DC, Democracy and Governance MA, Eco-Action, Equestrian, Fashion for Education, Fire This Time, First Book, Friends of turning the Page, Georgetown Donors, Georgetown Emergency Response Medical Service (GERMS), Georgetown Entrepreneurial Organization, Georgetown Gastronomes, Georgetown Microfinance, Georgetown University Astronomical Society, Georgetown University Children’s Theater, Georgetown University Club Racquetball, Georgetown University Club Tennis, Georgetown University Cycling Team, Georgetown University Hawaii Club, Georgetown University Multi- and Bi-racial Organization (GUMBO), Georgetown University Ping Pong Club, Georgetown Women’s Squash, Girl Talk, GraceNotes, Grilling Society (GUGS), Groove Theory, GU Art Aficionados, GU Donors, GU Habitat for Humanity, GU HERE, GU Jawani, GU Melody, GU Men Creating Change, GU Pride, GU Students for Education and Tennis (GUSET), GU Suicide Prevention, GU Urban Debate League, GU Young Scholars, GUMSHOE, Harmony, Hellenic Club, Hilltop Consultants, Hoya Blue, Hoya Outreach Programs and Education (HOPE), The Hoya, Hoyas for Liberty, Hoyas Global Initiative, Hoyathon, Ice Hockey Club, InterHall, International Relations Club, Iranian Cultural Society, Irish American Society, Israel Alliance (GIA), Japan Network (J-Net), Jewish Student Association (JSA), Just One Day, Klub Polski, La Société Francophone de Georgetown, Latin American Student Association (LASA), Leaders in Education About Diversity (L.E.A.D.), Lecture Fund, Legislative Advocates (GULA), Male Development Association, MEChA de Georgetown, Media Board, Medieval Club, MENA Forum, Men’s Basketball Club, Men’s Lacrosse Club, Men’s Rugby Football Club, Men’s Soccer Club, Men’s Ultimate Frisbee, Men’s Volleyball Club, Men’s Water Polo Club, Mock Trial, Muslim Students Association, NAACP, NAS: Arab Society, National Residence Hall Honorary, National Society of Collegiate Scholars, Native American Experience, Nomadic Theatre, O Clube Brasileiro de Georgetown, On the Docket, OurMoment, Pep Band, Philodemic Society, Philosophical Society, Pre-Med Society, Prison Outreach, Program Board (GPB), Psychology Students Association, Real Estate Investment Club, Republican Women, Right to Life, Ritmo y Sabor, Running Club, School of Foreign Service Academic Council, Senior Class Committee, Singapore Society, Solidarity Committee, South Asian Society, Southern Society, Spring Break in Appalachia, St. Elizabeth’s Hospital Outreach, Step, Student Activities Commission (SAC), Student Investment Fund (GUSIF), Student Movement, Student of Color Alliance, Students for Justice in Palestine, Students Helping Honduras, Students Stopping Trafficking of People (SSTOP), Students Taking Action Now Darfur (STAND), Sursum Corda Literacy Program, Tae Kwon Do Club, Taiwanese American Student Association (TASA), Take Back The Night (TBTN), The Anthem, The Georgetown College Journal, The Georgetown Improv Association, The Georgetown Independent, Triathlon Club Team, Truth and Human Rights in North Korea (THiNK), UNICEF – Georgetown, United Feminists, Vietnamese Student Association, The Voice, WGBT-FM, Wind Ensemble, Women in Politics, Women’s Water Polo Club, Women’s Basketball Club, Women’s Field Hockey Club, Women’s Lacrosse Club, Women’s Rugby Football Club, Women’s Soccer Club, Women’s Ultimate Frisbee, Women’s Volleyball Club, World Percussion Ensemble, Ye Doomesday Booke

    Not to mention every other society, club, event, initiative and improvement to this campus that has been smothered by lack of funds.

    But, by all means, if you want to persist in some inexplicable anti-GUSA delusion and save the .042% of the yearly cost of going to Georgetown, do so. Just don’t take it out on the rest of us.

    To everyone else, I would encourage you to read the document above. It explains the need for this referendum in great detail

  3. @ Justsaying

    Copypasta is not a substitute for thought.

    Just say no to fee hikes.

  4. Dear GUSA representative,

    how about you actually choose to try to use the 2 braincells you have to get the money the georgetown administration promised few years ago. I will NOT pay $25 extra on what i already pay so a dipshit like you can put something meaningless on your resume. I am not being GUSA delusional, im realistic, GUSA is as useful as used toilet paper.

    Yours truly,

  5. Yeah, that’s right, GUSA is proposing a $25 surcharge so dipshits can put something meaningless on their resumes, like quadrupling the amount of student funding available to groups and bringing us in line with our peer schools.

    Can’t wait to see the vote totals here.

  6. I don’t understand why they don’t separate the question. I’m pretty sure no one has a problem with allocating the full $100, whereas a lot of people have trouble with increasing the fee at this point. It’s already going to be an uphill battle trying to get 2,000 people to vote in (much less approve) the referendum.

    It might even be against the spirit of the GUSA Constitution not to separate the question:

    Article VII, Section 3: “… In either case, each proposed amendment shall be ratified INDIVIDUALLY as a valid part of this Constitution…”

  7. John,

    That’s regarding amendments to the GUSA Constitution. The Student Activities Fee was created by GUSA but is not part of the Constitution (because it involved money, it had to be ratified by the Board of Directors). The Constitution only gives GUSA the power to “finance and administer” a central student activities fund. While an argument could be made that that provision allows them to unilaterally raise the fee or allocate whatever percentage of the revenue it chooses (i.e., go from 50% to 100%), in real life, all monetary hikes have to be approved by the BoD, there would be, I believe, significant student outcry (at least on the raising money unilaterally issue), and it would be going against the procedure set in the original referendum in 2001 setting up the fee and giving thus implicitly placing the ultimate power of raising the fee in the hands of the students.

    Long story short: The rules regarding constitutional referenda don’t apply. The 2,000 ceiling on votes was set by GUSA to ensure the perception of legitimacy — technically, nothing would bar it from having no minimum bar (except, of course, common sense), and the requirement of individually ratifying each amendment doesn’t apply, or the 24 hour voting period. If students reject the amendment raising their total amount paid by four tenths of one percent, nothing’s stopping GUSA from holding another referendum just on the allocation alone (or separating them out).

    To be fair, though, GUSA’s held several town halls and Senate sessions on the matter, during which public comment was not only permitted but encouraged. The original proposal was actually without any fee hikes, but because many club leaders and advisory board members spoke out in favor of it, the FinnApp added it. People opposed to the slightly raised fee but who want the 100% allocation were more than able to show up and protest or contact their Senator. I guess it goes to the adage that decisions are made by those who show up.

    But students have the ultimate say Dec. 7-9.

  8. @ Matt

    This kind of long winded, condescending Newspeak is the reason many students have nothing but contempt for the egoists at GUSA and their equally self righteous apologists.

    Father Schall for Philosopher King of Georgetown!

  9. @ Jacob:

    Well, if you want your answers devoid of nuance, or correctness, I can answer certainly give a condescending answer commensurate with the level of debate used by people like you:

    Q: Why isn’t GUSA separating the question of the 100% fee application and the fee hike, as the GUSA Constitution seemingly mandates?
    A: Because the Constitution doesn’t apply here.


  10. Pingback: Vox Populi » GUSA approves fee reform, awaits December referendum

  11. Pingback: Vox Populi » The Final SAFE Proposals: Part I

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