Council Clippings

This edition of Council Clippings covers all SGA meetings since the previous issue of the Technique, consisting of UHR meetings from Jan. 8 and Jan. 15, and GSS meetings from Dec. 4 and Jan. 15.

Bill of the Week Spotlight

PASSED: Joint Allocation to Campus MovieFest at Georgia Tech, requesting $7,000 towards an admission fee to Ideas United (the company which runs Campus MovieFest nationwide). Passed UHR 35-1-1; passed GSS 21-3-3.

This joint allocation bill came before both houses on Jan. 15. Campus MovieFest is an annual student film festival held throughout the US, and provides students with laptops and filming equipment to make their five-minute film. The Campus MovieFest branch at Georgia Tech requested a total of $10,000 to cover the cost of a newly imposed admission fee to the festival’s organizing company, Ideas United. This admission fee imposed on each participating school covers the costs of the event, including the computers and film equipment. This allows the film festival to continue to be free to all participating students. The total cost of admission is $36,567, of which the organization was able to provide for itself $26,567. Within the $10,000 funding request, the organization received $3,000 from the Legislative Council of the RHA, and requested the remaining $7,000 from SGA. The Joint Finance Committee reviewed the bill and recommended the SGA to pay the request in full. As a result, the bill passed through both houses easily.

UHR issues meeting

During its first session of the spring semester, the UHR conducted an “issues meeting”. Representatives were encouraged to describe issues relating to campus that they would like to see SGA focus on improving.

Several representatives spoke about the importance of increasing the accessibility of SGA to the average student. One suggestion was to have open house meetings which students would be encouraged to attend. Another was to construct a comment board similar to that used by Tech Rec (placed outside the facility to gather comments on sticky notes), which would be placed outside the SGA office, and the notes would be read aloud before meetings. A final suggestion on the topic was to generate mail lists to keep representatives in better communication with their constituency.

Another hot topic was campus food. A representative suggested lobbying for increased hours at the Student Center food court (where most of the vendors close at 3 p.m.) and increased BuzzCard access to restaurants around campus. A GT Dining employee appreciation day was encouraged as well.

The final topic was campus transportation. Representatives complained that buses sitting on West Campus are inefficient and also that there are too many stops in underutilized areas. Stingerette service, which formerly was open to areas surrounding campus but is now restricted to campus, was urged to return access to areas such as Home Park. Other suggestions were to place labels on the left side and back of each bus identifying its route (so students can see which bus has just left) as well as a bus driver appreciation day.

Musicians’ Network concert report

Musicians’ Network hosted a concert on Nov. 9 in which the band Copeland played in Yellow Jacket Park. The organization requested over $27,000 from SGA to fund the concert (the majority of which went to cover the cost of the main act at $15,000). Because of the high dollar amount and the fact that the request was made on relatively short notice (the bill was introduced on Oct. 23 and had to pass that night in order to give Musicians’ Network the ability to secure Copeland for the desired date before their deadline), the bill attracted some scrutiny, so a representative of the organization appeared before UHR to present a rundown of the costs of the concert and the revenues it raised.

Most of the figures were exactly as they were projected, but one area of inaccuracy in the projection was the attendance. One thousand Tech students and 250 non-Tech students were projected to come; the actual amounts were 741 and 191, respectively. This led to nearly $700 less revenue in non-Tech ticket sales (the concert was free to Tech students). Another was that the cost of the fencing for the concert was, at $3,474.58, nearly $500 more than the projected amount, but this was roughly balanced by the actual cost of paramedics on hand being $600 less than it was projected to be.In the end, the actual total cost of the show came within a few hundred dollars of its projected cost, and the amount needed from SGA came to within under $100 of the amount it projected that it needed.

When accounting for the projected funds raised, the total final show cost of $20,404.80 was slightly higher than the $19.536.37 that was projected.

Next week:

Next Tuesday will be the third meeting of the semester for UHR and the second meeting of the semester for GSS.UHR and GSS will consider joint allocation bills for the Mars Society at Georgia Tech (requesting $2,730 for a rover building competition), the African Students Association (requesting $902.50 to hold an AIDS charity conference/reception on campus), the Veritas Forum (requesting $4,497.50 for a religion-centered discussion) and the African American Student Union (requesting $8,835 to hold its Black Leadership Conference).

They will also consider a joint resolution which would oppose Georgia State House Bill 154 (a controversial bill before the state legislature which is intended to encourage academic diversity in the face of a perceived political bias by bill supporters). The UHR will also consider a resolution to amend the bylaws of undergraduate student government (regarding the time by which bills should be submitted to the online bill system).