Club budgets slashed, ski club funds halved

Students interested in the Ski and Snowboard Club (UVMSSC) may feel the effects of Student Government Association budget cuts next winter. The UVMSSC will receive a club budget of $24,997.50 next year from SGA compared to last year’s $40,640, SGA Office Coordinator Jessica Lavery said. “Where the majority of our members are going to feel the impact of our budget cuts are in the number of and frequency of buses going to and from the mountains next year,” Vice President of UVMSSC M.J. Anderson said. The SGA Finance Committee bases its budget allocations on various aspects of each club’s activity, Finance Committee Chair Alex Mallea said. The spring budget process distributes SGA funds to clubs for the next fiscal year’s expenses. Fiscal Year 2012 begins on July 1, 2011 and ends June 31, 2012, Mallea said. The UVMSSC expects the budget cuts to affect off-campus events at local ski and snowboard resorts, which could potentially impact their partnership with those mountains, Anderson said. “We will certainly have to be more strategic with the events we choose to hold next year and will have to weigh the costs of the quantity versus quality of our events,” she said. The creation of the FY12 budget was a long process that included proposing specific club needs to the SGA Finance Committee in January 2011, Anderson said. The budget proposed by the UVMSSC was based on their past budgets and the rate at which the club has been growing, she said. The Finance Committee told the clubs that they would return their amended club budgets before spring break, Anderson said. UVMSSC’s proposed budget was released two weeks after spring break and the UVMSSC was given an unreasonable amount of time to formally object to the new budget provided by the SGA, she said. “We were given a two-day period to contest [our amended budget], a window that did not give the opportunity to thoroughly inspect the budget and prepare a presentation to contest the funding,” Anderson said. The UVMSSC currently serves more than 2,000 student members. The club is committed to continuing to promote ski and ride culture on campus despite the budget cuts, she said. However, other club members said they are excited about the increase in funds that the SGA has allocated to their organization. “There are so many more possibilities with this increase in money,” FeelGood member Marcy Meyers said. “It will definitely allow us to do some things in this coming year that we have not been able to do in the past due to lack of funds.” FeelGood, a club that donates the proceeds from grilled cheese sandwiches to the Hunger Project, will receive $17,030.25 next year after receiving $11,061 this year, Lavery said.