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Budget slump affects many activities on campus

In early December, the Student Government Board released the final budget allocations for the 2013-2014 academic year.
This coincided with the announcement that the student activity fee would not be increased.
Campus clubs and organizations were cut by $62,780. While the majority received less than the current year, a select few received more. Some clubs, such as Anthropology Club, History Club and the Environmental Science Forum did not receive a budget this year but will next year. The most significant increase happened to the Commuter Student Association (CSA). It increased from $731 to $4,000.
While CSA increased its budget, the Association of Campus Events, which holds many events on campus, got a decrease of $7,138.
All media organizations on campus were cut. The most significant were the Keystone Newspaper, with a decrease of $7,521, and the KU Radio station (KUR), with a decrease of $2,801. The cuts for media organizations totaled $11,755.
Michael Regensburger, the manager of KUR, said the organization would have to “do a little belt-tightening.”
“Our main priority is the station’s functionality as a broadcast entity, so money will be focused there first and any extras like events or trips may have to be cut,” said Regensburger.
He said they may not be able to host a large event such as Battle of the Bands.
Musical organizations were cut as well. The most severe cuts happened to the KU Marching Band, which decreased by $3,109. While the Marching Band Uniform Reserve received $7,863 this year, it did not receive money for next year. The total of cuts for musical organizations was $19,757.
Special programs overall decreased. The SUB Movie series budget decreased by $2,317. Other significant decreases include Bears at Night and Homecoming. However, more money is being allocated to summer activities. KUnited is getting $1,181 more as well. Annual student programming received a budget of $2,500 for next year, which will be the first year they received a budget.
The steepest cuts overall went to athletics. While the budget for this year is $646,472, it will be cut by $14,472. The budget totals $632,000, which is less than that of 2011-12.
Greg Bamberger, the director of athletics at KU, said there will be less money for athletic operations. These expenses include items such as travel, competition, food and officials.
Bamberger attributes the problem of funding to the decrease in enrollment, which allows for less student fees to be accumulated.
In August, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported that the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) universities experienced a decline in enrollment after 14 years of growth. The 14 universities lost about 1,500 students.
On Friday, Governor Corbett announced a plan to flat fund state universities in return for the schools’ promise to keep tuition hikes as low as possible.

By Emily Leayman

Categories: News