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UNC Student Congress talks funding for groups

The first meeting of the 93rd session of Student Congress Tuesday night was defined by one of the body’s main responsibilities — allocating funds to student organizations.

Five bills were passed to appropriate funds to various student groups, including a request for more than $20,000 from the UNC College Republicans.

Finance committee Chairman Jared Simmons and College Republicans Chairman Greg Steele presented the groups’ request for funds to bring Republican writer and pundit Ann Coulter to campus next month.

After much debate, the request was amended to give the group only about $5,000 for Coulter’s speaker fees. The other $15,000 was allotted but expected to be paid back to the University after fundraising.

Steele said the group has already raised some money for the event.

He also said the group requested $25,000 to bring Karl Rove to campus last year. The group spent $15,000 in student fees to bring Rove to campus.

Adam Horowitz, chairman of the oversight committee, raised concerns about the amount of money requested.

“It just bothers me that we’re paying this much for one event,” he said.

Other appropriations passed included $717 to the Special Libraries Association, $858 to Building Bonds, Breaking B.A.R.S. and $245 to UNC M.A.N.O., which teaches English as a second language.

The group representatives said at the meeting that the organization plans to raise $5,000 for a project at the University.

The group originally requested $4,953 in funding, including $450 to send 10 students to an on-campus conference and $250 for publicity.

“This request took some significant cutting,” Simmons said.

Student Congress also unanimously passed a resolution to appoint Shruthi Sundaram as Board of Elections chairwoman. Sundaram will be in charge of enforcing election laws during the next student body president campaign.

She served as the vice chairwoman of the Board of Elections last school year. She was appointed during the summer session of Student Congress. Her interim appointment ended Aug. 22.

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