Organizations experience S&A funding decrease as staff costs rise

University groups look for places to reduce budget as blanket cuts decrease fee allocation

IAN SMAY, Evergreen reporter

Most groups received a cut to their services and activities fees request for the 2018-19 academic year after the S&A Committee decided on a 2.5-percent blanket cut in an effort to reduce student fees.

Health & Wellness Services is among the groups that received this cut, amounting to $8,000 less than it requested from the committee.

Paula Adams, associate director of health promotion for Health & Wellness, said the cuts they will need to make will come not from their staffing budget, but from other places.

“We just tried to be creative,” Adams said, “and look at where we could possibly streamline some of our non-staffing costs.”

Staffing costs will increase from last year as minimum wage increases and state workers’ wages go up, she said.

Health & Wellness has not decided on any areas to cut heavily from. Adams said the group did not want to make funding decisions without input from students and other partner groups. Possible areas to cut include programming and other expenses that don’t go toward wages or salaries.

The Women’s Resource Center, which also houses Cougar Safe Rides, a transportation service that replaced Women’s Transit, was also subject to the blanket cut.

Facing rising costs in staffing as well, the groups within the center will need to make fiscally responsible decisions, Director Amy Sharp said.

“I just know our Coalition of Women Students, the organizations under that, are going to have to be a little more accountable than they have in the past,” she said.

Despite having to cut things like travel costs — which led to the group deciding not to fund any student travel to a national conference — Sharp said they are thankful for the funds they received.

“We are super grateful for whatever funds we get,” she said. “We want to be able to show that we are good stewards of these funds.”

The Children’s Center, which provides daycare and other services for student parents and university employees, only received about $430,000 from the S&A committee. They requested a little over $500,000.

The center faces increases in food costs and other areas, as well as wages, Executive Director Brenda Boyd said.

On top of these expenses, they were not chosen to receive the Child Care Access Means Parents in School Program grant, which provided a large amount of money to the center. While they missed out on this four-year cycle for the grant, they hope the application reopens next year due to an increase in the Department of Education’s budget for the CCAMPIS grant, she said.

Boyd said the Children’s Center has not made any final decisions on budget cuts since the S&A fees were released.