An ad-hoc committee created by the Undergraduate Student Government has come up with a partial solution to the controversy of the National Tournament Grant, which has been found by the senate to be unconstitutional.
The committee, consisting of senators David Adams, Corey Platt and Nicholas Ela, was unable to present its findings at last Thursday’s senate meeting due to time constraints but did publish them in the April 19 USG agenda.
The committee voted 2-1, with Adams opposing, to “create a National Event Grant that is open to all clubs, with different criteria than normal Event Grants,” according to its statement. The system of event grants has not been finalized.
Platt said they are “still trying to figure some of the details involved and what defines national.” The committee will be meeting Monday to come up with a final proposal. The committee met with representatives from several clubs when making their decision.
The committee agreed that the “National” part of the grant must be defined in terms of size, scale or reputation and that each club should receive a limit of one National Event Grant a semester.
Each grant has a maximum of $3,500-$4,000, has maximum amounts for specific expenses and will fund a maximum of 80 percent of the trip.
Adams said he voted against creating the grant because he thought there did not need to be a special grant for national events and creating one would tie up the Senate.
The other options the committee had were to have everything covered by event grants and have all funding placed in the clubs’ line budgets.
“They had three options,” Women’s Soccer president Kathryn Michaud said. “The first one was the only one that would have been beneficial. The other two options would cause a lot of problems. The first option needs to have a few things changed though.”
The funding for the Grant would come from USG’s annual rollover budget, which is usually around $200,000, according to USG Treasurer Thomas Kirnbauer.
Numerous members of sport clubs and other clubs came to protest at the USG office last month, when the motion to strike the National Tournament Grant was proposed by Senator Jason Sockin.
The argument against the current grant was that its wording limited the National Tournament Grant to sport clubs, which violates the USG constitution by having separate funding criteria for different clubs.
“I do not agree on funding of up to 80 percent of the total cost,” said men’s soccer President Derek Cope, who attended the Thursday meeting, “because the cost can still be substantial.” He also said the funding amount should be about $1,500 greater.
“I agree that there should be a National Event Grant,” Cope said, “so that there is no preferential treatment.”