The Orion

Student fees not making it out of the AS ballot box

Karen Limones

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A majority of student fees are not being distributed by students in Associated Students elections.

Revenue Sharing is a program created to provide eligible student organizations funding for any necessity. Each semester $15 from the student activity fee can be allocated to a student organization on campus.

When students decide not to vote, their money is allocated elsewhere by AS.

“Money that isn’t disbursed is used in other ways that student don’t normally know where it’s used, but the money is still there and it goes toward any other operational source on campus,” Nan Timmons said, staff member of the Associated Student Government. “Whereas, if students vote they know where the money goes towards and it’s something they support.”

Last year 192 clubs and organizations received $64,980 from revenue distribution. Approximately 4,915 students voted out of 17,220. Voter turnout was 28.5 percent.

This means $184, 575 was distributed by AS and not with student votes.

Revenue sharing allocation takes place during the Associated Students spring general election. Voters are provided a list of eligible organizations from which to choose and they can designate $15 to one organization, $7.50 to two organizations or $5 to three organizations.

The top 10 organizations that received the most funds last year were CAVE, which had the highest amount of revenue allocated to them with $2052.50, Computer Graphics Club, Alpha Delta Pi, Gamma Phi Beta, Alpha Phi, Gender & Sexuality Equity Center Alpha Gamma Delta, Kappa Sigma, Alpha Omicron Pi and Sigma Kappa.

This year, program advisers said they are hoping to encourage more students on campus to cast their votes.

To participate in this share, five members of an organization, including the president and treasurer of the organization, must attend a mandatory training that is offered before classes begin. Later, a profile should be submitted on WildCat Sync for eligibility requirements to be considered and recognized by Feb. 24. Once they become recognized it allows a club the opportunity to be on the revenue sharing list.

Funds get disbursed later by a voting process on Apr. 12-14 during the AS general election. Students will receive an online ballot or mailed ballot that will allow them to vote for the 17 elected offices in AS government affairs. After the ballot for elected positions is completed, a link will send voters to another ballot where they can choose three organizations and designate which clubs their $15 allotment goes.

Program coordinators, advisers, members of the Chico State staff and candidates running for elections stress the importance of voting. They said they believe it’s important to vote for government offices but it’s significant for students to use their ability to distribute fees toward an organization they support. Joel Ramirez, assistant coordinator of Student Organizations and Leadership Education, encourages students to vote so they have an input on where their money is being spent.

“For those of you who don’t vote I highly recommend to take the opportunity to vote because this is an opportunity to voice your opinions and voice your vote to what happens to student fees, where they go, and what clubs and organizations on campus students are willing to support and help,” Ramirez said.

Karen Limones can be reached at [email protected] or @theorion_news on Twitter.

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Student fees not making it out of the AS ballot box