Since my last report (Veto Upheld, That Is All: ASUO Senate Recap 07 March 2011), much has changed.
The Athletics and Contracts Finance Committee met Sunday for a little over a half hour. During this hearing, the committee announced that it had cut $84,264 from the Lane Transit District contract during renegotiations on Friday. The committee decided, during the meeting, to allocate $38,000 to the athletic department and $3,600 to Sexual Assault Support Services. The remaining $42,664 went unallocated, reducing the ACFC Budget to $3,964,991.00, an increase of 6.32 percent over this year’s levels.
In a memo sent to the Executive and Senate, the committee explained “The ACFC had decided ultimately to not fund OSPIRG. The reasons for this where mixed. Some members felt it was unethical to mandate a fee for a public interest research group without implementing an-opt out fee. Other members felt the money could be better spent. The group would reconsider this allocation if various funding mechanisms were pursued further.”
The Senate attempted to meet Monday night to pass the new budget, but could not make quorum. Many believed that this, combined with the timeline desired by Robin Holmes and others in the administration, would allow ASUO President Amelie Rousseau to submit her own budget to the administration.
However, the Constitution Court ruled today that the administration’s desired deadline was not binding, and that Senate had until March 31 to submit a budget. “The Court is unpersuaded by the fact that University administration would like the budget by March 18, March 29 or any other date. University Administration has to adhere to the ASUO Constitution just like all other branches of the ASUO,” said Chief Justice Andrae Washington in the Court’s Per Curium opinion. The Court went on to explain that the two days the Senate is bound to act on the ACFC’s new recommendation within will not begin until March 25.
So now, instead of perhaps receiving the gift of a contract directly from Rousseau, OSPIRG will apparently have to go at least one more round with the Senate during the first week of Spring Term.