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The Dartmouth
June 21, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth

Assembly votes to limit financial co-sponsorship

In a precedent-setting resolution, the Student Assembly established a co-sponsorship policy that effectively terminates its commitment to co-sponsor activities initiated by other organizations.

The resolution states that while the Assembly will no longer help fund events of other student organizations, it will remain a resource to those groups by guiding them to alternate sources of funding and providing the manpower to plan and produce such events.

Currently, since no advising mechanisms are in place to lend this assistance, Treasurer Alex Wilson '01 will fill this role in the interim.

The only exceptions mentioned in the resolution are the three $1,000 events the Assembly funds, but for which nonmembers submit ideas. Any Assembly-initiated activities will not be subjected to the passed resolution.

"Not funding the entire event is counterproductive because co-sponsorship dilutes SA's effort to do other things during our meeting time," Wilson said.

Resolutions superceding this policy will be considered, however, on a case-by-case basis, he added.

"It's not a binding policy, just a guideline so we don't waste time on resolutions based on co-sponsorship," Wilson said.

According to Wilson, the reasoning behind this decision was to centralize student funding, especially since the Undergraduate Finance Committee, not the Assembly, should be the source of allocating such funds.

He added that the Assembly's co-sponsorship obligations in the past have been rather small, and that the UFC does not consider co-sponsorship a function of the Assembly.

While the resolution passed by a wide 27-7 margin, there was a vocal faction that dissented.

Dartmouth Television organizational representative J.R. Lederer '02 objected to the resolution on the grounds that it "strikes away" a resource for student funding, which is hard enough to secure under current methods.

Student Life Committee Chair Casey Sixkiller '00 said the Committee On Student Organizations, a subsidiary of the UFC, recently acquired an additional $150,000, so the Assembly's decision might not hurt student organizations.

By establishing a precedent for denying co-sponsorship, Allison Evans '02 said she did not want the UFC to respond by directing money straight into the pockets of the organizations rather than through the Assembly.

Others were not convinced this action was the proper impression to convey to the campus.

"This sends the wrong message in terms of what type of organization we are and what SA stands for," Bill Jaeger '02 said.

The first step should be to get an advising mechanism in place rather than to pass a second resolution to establish one after the fact and at the expense of alienating the campus, he said.

As an internal policy, the resolution is a matter of how the Assembly views its funding role in terms of other bodies that lend financial assistance to groups rather than a policy shaped by campus opinion, Wilson said.

Sponsors of the resolution included Wilson, Matt Benedetto '00 and the Student Organizations Committee.