Ohio University Student Senate debated major budget resolutions and averted a near budget crisis during its general body meeting Wednesday night.
If Senate passed all six resolutions brought to the body, the remaining budget for the rest of the academic year would have been $285.09. Instead, Senate passed five budget resolutions, allocating $2,606.77 and giving them $2,629.67 for the rest of the academic year.
Senate ending up passing a $317.80 budget to assist in the purchase for T-shirts and gloves for Athens Beautification Day and two budgets to fund Take Back the Night at $1,971 and $265.
“This is a fairly large budget … but Take Back the Night is something that lasts a week and two days, with several events every single day,” Cassidy Paul, a Women’s Affair senator and a co-sponsor of the larger budget, said during the meeting. “The very important events help (sexual assault) survivors share their stories and teach self-empowerment and self-defense.”
Senate ended up tabling the largest budget resolution of the meeting, a $2,344.58 budget for a “Finals Fest” at the end of the semester. Resolution co-sponsors Jacob Haskins and Jordan Kelley agreed to look into a cheaper option for the breakfast buffet, which would cost $11.50 per person for 200 people. Kelley said the projected number of attendees for the event was reasonable since the Finals Fest last year ran out of food after about 30 minutes when funding was allocated for 150 people.
Senate also allocated $300 for a table at the Leadership Gala on April 6 and $49.97 for a third white noise machine for the expanded Students Defending Students office. SDS needed the machine in order to comply with FERPA standards. The body also appointed Ben Ekelman as an off-campus senator.
The meeting took place less than two hours before the results of the Senate elections were announced. President Gabby Bacha expressed her appreciation to everyone that ran in the elections during her report.
“I would like to thank the people that decided to participate (in elections) this year. I think you all raised a lot of good questions, and I think we’re trying to change how elections work at Ohio University,” Bacha said to the body. “Furthermore, I know a lot of criticism comes with Senate during this time. Just so you know, you’re doing fabulous work, and you’re doing far more than most Senates have in the past few years.”