At the beginning of the semester, Oswego State’s Habitat for Humanity requested $1,500 from the Student Association contingency fund to go toward an event on March 28 because the organization never received a budget.
After the initial annual budget bill was passed in April 2018, the SA budget council noticed there was an issue with all of the community services organizations and their budgets – there were none proposed.
Student Association Director of Finance Miranda Kryskow said all student organizations were supposed to submit a budget request on Laker Life, and when the budget council reviewed the community service organizations, there were no budget requests.
Catherine Millington, the budget council subcommittee chair at the time, emailed the organizations to give them an extension on the deadline. The budget committee received budget requests from all but Habitat for Humanity, according to Kryskow. Millington no longer attends Oswego State.
The organizations, including Habitat for Humanity, Adopt-A-Grandparent, Mentor Oswego and Community Service, were contacted to put in a request after the annual budget bill had already been passed. Those organizations, excluding Habitat for Humanity, were approved to receive a budget in a bill passed Nov. 6, 2018.
“The community services organizations of SUNY Oswego had requested, and were approved, funding for the 2018-2019 academic year. However, due to errors and unfortunate circumstances, Community Services Organizations were not included on the Annual Budget Bill (SLE.53.29) and as a result did not receive their funding,” according to the November bill.
Adopt-A-Grandparent received $1,200, Community Service received $1,550, and Mentor Oswego received $675. Habitat for Humanity was noted in the bill to not have received any funding.
“The reason Habitat for Humanity still doesn’t have any money is because we never received a funding request for them,” Kryskow said. “They can still go to senate and get funding.”
There is currently $5,490 in the contingency fund for the remainder of the academic year, which is typically used for student organizations to request additional funding on top of their initial budget.
Already operating without a budget for a semester, Habitat for Humanity President Ashley Edwards attended the first and second SA meetings to ask for money from the contingency fund and to discuss the issue of not having a budget. She requested a total of $1,500 to cater and advertise for their event, “Oxfam Hunger Banquet.” SA senators voted and granted the organization $600.
“The basic idea behind the event is to teach students about world poverty and injustices,” Edwards said. “The event itself is somewhat secretive in how it actually works, but students are given someone else’s story – like the Holocaust Museum if you’ve ever been – in order to give them more connection to the event.”
Kryskow said the process for granting budgets for the next academic year is already underway. Habitat for Humanity requested $2,800 for next year.
Photo by Maria Pericozzi | The Oswegonian