Dominic Baez – Editor in chief. The Associated Students of Linfield College Cabinet members toil every May to compile a budget for the coming school year. At the end of last May, ASLC President senior Ashlee Carter and her Cabinet cut $57,000 from the proposed budget to balance it with ASLC’s revenues. One of the more peculiar cuts affected club budgets.
For the last several years, each club on campus — not including club sports or student media — received a budget of $100 from ASLC at the beginning of each school year. This year, clubs were only given $85.
“That $100, that’s an arbitrary number,” senior Chris McIsaac, ASLC vice president of business and finance, said. “It wasn’t written that clubs had to have that much. It didn’t have to be $100.”
In reality, McIsaac said, few clubs used all of the $100 allotted to them last year. Most clubs still had nearly $20 left in their accounts. Several groups, however, spent more than they received.
“Clubs can still go to Activities Council to get money,” Carter said. “There’s $23,000 there for them to use. They still have a place to go.”
Carter’s and McIsaac’s explanation of the $15 cut boils down to one reason: They were still $600 over-budget before making the cut. The campus has 40 chartered clubs that receive ASLC funds, so they reduced club budgets by $15 to reach this goal.
“A lot of places took cuts,” Carter said. “It wasn’t just the clubs. We just had $600 to cut from somewhere.”
Preparing the budget can be somewhat of a guessing game each year, as ASLC receives its funds from student body fees: $113 each semester and $26 for January Term from each student. However, enrollment fluctuates every year, making it difficult to compile an accurate budget in advance.
“They’re assumed numbers,” McIsaac said. “The numbers are from previous years, projected numbers and other things.”
This year’s projection is based on an enrollment of 1,632 students during Fall Semester, 1,100 during January Term and 1,534 during Spring Term.
Only $103 of each student’s fee, however, goes toward ASLC activities each semester. The remaining $10 will be used for the Sustainability Fund that was approved last May. ASLC will use all $26 of the January Term fee.
Despite the 15-percent budget reduction, most clubs were unfazed by the decision.
“Some of the club leaders aren’t thrilled by it, but they all understand when I point out that very few clubs use all, if any, of their funds, and Activities Council has over $20,000 to give to clubs for events,” ASLC Club Director junior Colin Jones said.
This story is part of a continuing series regarding ASLC budget and spending.