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ASG approves internal operating budget, elects student life council members

Miami University’s Associated Student Government (ASG) approved its internal operating budget for the fall semester and elected two senators to the student life council at its Sept. 22 meeting.

The internal operating budget allocates ASG funds to executive cabinet members so they can carry out initiatives related to their positions. This semester, a total of $3,550 was granted to four different cabinet members.

Off-campus senator Jake Kravitz raised concerns about Secretary for On-Campus Affairs Trey Petrella’s allocation being too high. Petrella requested $360 for 24 gift cards to be given as prizes at a Miami trivia event.

Kravitz’s main concern was that Petrella’s funds would be taken from ASG’s agency funds, which are generated through fundraising rather than from student fees.

“As it stands right now, we’re not getting any more agency funds,” Kravitz said, “So that means we need to be really careful about what we’re spending them on.”

Several senators came to Petrella’s defense after Kravitz’s comments, and Secretary of Finance Ben Waugh mentioned that agency funds hadn’t been used since 2016.

“Senator Kravitz made the point that they aren’t being regenerated, but how long are we going to let them sit there and not use them?” Waugh said.

The budget was approved with 30 yeas, zero nays and three abstentions.

ASG also held elections for the student life council, which meets once each month and discusses non-academic aspects of student life, such as the code of conduct.

Senators Wes Payne, Sidra Capriolo and Lauren Doepke accepted nominations to run for the two open spots on the council.

Payne, a first-year student, highlighted his experience planning events as a member of student council in high school. He also said his perspective as a first-year during COVID-19 would be particularly valuable to the council.

Capriolo discussed her experiences in service-related leadership positions and her membership on the safe return to campus committee and the student community relations commission.

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Doepke said her work on sexual and interpersonal violence prevention, alcohol awareness and civic engagement initiatives qualified her for the position.

ASG elected Payne and Capriolo to the council.