After the initial presentation, arms began to rise.
An unexpected debate prevented the Wesleyan Council on Student Affairs (WCSA) full senate from adjuring at their usual time on March 30. The point of contention: funding for the Campus Programming Board (CPB).
Junior Jerry Lherisson, president of WCSA, and junior Emma Drongowski, vice president of WCSA, presented a revised plan to increase the student activity fee as the last order of business at the meeting.
The plan, which will be voted on by senators April 6, would raise the student activity fee from $130 per semester to $160. This would give WCSA the budgetary freedom to better control how their funds are spent.
According to Lherisson, it would allow WCSA to “support organizations with a history of demonstrating services” vital to student life and put WCSA “in charge of where its money goes.”
But CPB was the center of discussion after Lherisson invited questions.
Billy George, a junior, noted that “attendance and response from students in regards to CPB’s programs is low.” He also raised concerns about CPB’s funds being a line-item on the budget.
Sam Schurer, a sophomore, said that “the cost of bringing Drake Bell to campus is a common complaint amongst the student body.”
Bell, who played at Bishop Bash on March 28, cost CPB $20,000 to host. The separate fee for stage and sound, among other logistical expenses, totaled $30,000.
In response to the senators concerns, Drongowski said that the money for Bell “came from a totally separate account… [and that] most of the CPB money goes to Day on the Jay.”
This appeal did not sway Zoe Morris, a junior, who wondered why there was “not more oversight by WCSA of an organization that received its funding from WCSA.”
In the final words on the subject, Lherisson noted that “every spring WCSA meets with CPB to discuss finances and organization. If having more oversight is something you want, we can discuss having more senators on CPB or weekly meetings with CPB’s treasurer. Bottom line, we want to know where all the money is going.”