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The Daily Tar Heel

Funded mandates: Finance committee accurately doles out fee money

The Student Congress finance committee had a difficult task this year — allocating about $365,000 to student organizations whose requests collectively reached nearly $1 million.

But this task is especially delicate with regards to cultural groups on campus.

In order to address this issue, the finance committee particularly focuses on the principle of specialization — that is, how unique an organization is to the student body — to allocate money to cultural organizations.

The other two factors enumerated in the Student Code and used when considering funding requests are how vital a group is to the student body and how many people participate.

It appears the finance committee did a good job of evaluating those factors.

Cultural organizations are of significant importance on our campus.

They allow our students to celebrate their history and their beliefs within their own communities.

And these groups are of great educational value to our campus at large. While representative numbers might not be high, the emotional needs these clubs fill often outweigh simple participation.

The finance committee ensured these groups were given adequate and equal opportunity. Discrepancies in funding are often the fault of the groups themselves, not the finance committee.

For instance, some groups requested funding for social events — a category not funded by student government.

These groups deserve equal opportunity for legitimate needs. But that does not mean they have to be funded equally in order for that to happen.

The finance committee protected this opportunity while simultaneously ensuring each dollar allocated would go the maximum distance.

We look forward to Student Body President Jasmin Jones’ approval of the 2010-11 budget allocation.

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