Tuition increase proposed, clubs feel budget crunch
The Coalition of student Leaders is meeting Sept. 28 and 29. One of the pressing topics on their agenda is the Board of Regents proposed tuition increase for fiscal years 2019 and 2020.
The proposal would increase student tuition by 5 percent per year and would see satellite campuses, Prince William Sound College and Kodiak College, increase tuition by as much as 10 percent for fiscal year 2019 and 9.5 percent for fiscal year 2020. This proposal is in its initial stages and with no budget projections ASUAF President Molly O’Scannell was hesitant to make a decision on whether or not the student senators would want to support such a proposal.
“I don’t really want to push this message, since I don’t have any budget projections,” O’Scannell said. “It’s kinda hard to say one way or the other whether this is going to be good.”
O’Scannell is waiting to receive more information on this proposal from the coalition during the next meetings.
Club funding this year is down almost $22,000 from last year. ASUAF’s budget has taken a major hit and the funding for clubs sits at $8,100. The first club to come to the senate this year was the UAF Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Club. Their representative, Dylan Baffrey, asked for ASUAF to help fund a self defense seminar as well as buying Jiu-Jitsu uniforms, referred to as “gis,” in bulk for the club members. Baffrey is hoping to keep the cost down or free to help keep involvement high.
“A big thing that we push for is that it’s free for UAF students and for people who want to come on from outside of the community,” Baffrey said, “We try to make it so they don’t have to pay a membership fee.”
The amount the club asked for was $1,600. Of that $600 would be for loaner items, such as the uniforms, and $1,000 would be for the self defense seminar and bringing instructors from around town and paying them for their time.
ASUAF senator, Hannah James, was not convinced that the club could keep operating without a membership fee.
“I’m not understanding why we would help fund the gis and the belts,” James said. “I don’t know why a membership fee wouldn’t make more sense for a club to have.”
Baffrey reiterated that the club is trying to do what they can to keep the club as accessible to students as possible.
O’Scannell raised concern that the budget may not be large enough to cover certain items for clubs that the senate has been able to provide in the past.
“In the past we have done a lot when students come to us for funding for that kind of thing,” O’scannell said, “but to be honest with you, this year we have a much lower funding level than we have in past years.”