Council approves annual budget, with cuts
Financial District, NEW YORK– The King’s Council approved a $88,715 budget last Tuesday for the 2012-2013 academic year, dividing the total amount between 11 different line items. All 10 House presidents approved it immediately.
The initial distribution between line items was originally determined over the summer by the Budget Committee, which consisted of Student Body President Samuel Tran, Director of Finance Allison Bates, Bonhoeffer President Peter Flemming and Reagan President David Dantzler.
The SBP and director of finance are required to be part of the Budget Committee by the constitution of The King's Council; Flemming and Dantzler were selected by their fellow presidents to fill out the committee at the last Council meeting of the spring semester.
House grants provide the base budget for each House, with $50 per member. Competition awards supplement the House budgets. Every time a House wins or places in a competition, it receives additional money from the Council. For example, the House of Churchill received an additional $200 for their victory in the Great Race.
Events/Spring Formal are under the authority of the director of student events, Sarah Doyal. Half of it is earmarked for the Spring Formal in April of next year. Operations includes various Council expenses: the annual retreat, food at meetings or any other related costs.
Council allocations were a new addition to the Council budget, essentially a slush fund that can be used for any purpose the Council deems fit. It is intended to be used for events, Houses or other causes, but is not solidly locked down to any specific item.
Stipends compensate the Student Body President and his four cabinet members – the Directors of Communications, Finance, Students Organizations, and Student Events.
This year's budget includes significant cuts, some of which were points of much discussion during Council deliberations.
President of the House of Susan B. Anthony, Clara LeFever – last year's director of student events – was concerned with the new events and Spring Formal budgets, despite the fact that they take up nearly 25 percent of the total Council allocations. She feared that not enough focus is being put on full-student body social events as a way to “build community.”
House of ten Boom President Christina Morgan asked if the student organizations at King's really needed all the money initially allotted to them. “If you give people money, they'll spend it,” she said, “even if they don't need it."
Eliza Ohman, president of the House of Barton, moved that $1,500 – more than 10 percent of the already reduced amount – be removed from the Organizations budget and be placed in Council allocations. This was agreed to unanimously by the Council, with the reasoning that the money could then be used for any purpose they saw fit, rather than being dedicated to fund the 12 student organizations currently running at King's.
The details of the student organizations budget will be decided sometime this week by the Organizations Budget Committee.
Meetings of The King's Council are open to the entire King's community – students, faculty, and staff. The next one will be held on Tuesday, Sept. 18 at noon in the new Founders' Room, in the Executive Suite on the 5th floor.