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ASB stipends reviewed by Senate

ASB, who determines the stipend amounts of all ASB personnel has determined that their new position of Director of School Spirit will earn $1000. ASB awards range from $100 to $1000 and this stipend is one of the highest awards for this kind of position. But some students are questioning how these amounts are determined based on the job.

ASB offers stipend amounts to its board of directors and any staff that is a part of ASB, including members of the Campus Activities Board, the Student Senate, and the Media Board. Positions in the Media Board are the heads of the five campus media organizations, Point TV, Point Radio, Driftwood, the Mariner and the Point Weekly.

The stipend each position receives is based on the hours that position is expected to work each week and how much responsibility it holds.

The staff members to receive the largest stipend pay are the board of directors; each of the eight positions, soon to be 10 with next year’s additional positions director of school spirit and director of activities and design, receives the equivalent of room and board for pay.

Room and board charge for this year, including the highest meal plan option, was $4,905. Half of this money is provided by the university and is to be used exclusively as a scholarship. The other half is given through ASB’s budget, and a director can choose to either receive the latter half as a stipend amount, $2,452 in their pocket, or take the full amount as a scholarship.

The stipend amount board of directors receive is a conversation “worked out between the university, the [board of] directors, and the ASB Advisor, Melissa,” said AJ Wolf, ASB president. “I would assume that if we wanted to change how much the board of directors got paid, it wouldn’t be something that would be implemented until after we’re paid, so we wouldn’t be able to increase our own pay,” said Wolf.

This means that though the board of directors has the ability to speak into their position’s stipend amount. This conversation is after their term and only affects their successor’s stipend pay.

Stipends for all ASB positions, however, must go through a process of review, which falls under the Student Senate’s responsibility. These responsibilities include discussing issues brought before the Senate, forming subcommittees, budgeting funds for clubs and societies, acting judiciously against ASB members who broke the ASB Student Leadership Lifestyle Agreement and writing initiatives.

As outlined in the constitution, each member of the Media Board that is in charge of a publication must “submit a bi-semester report specifically stating how they have accomplished their duties for the semester” to the Student Senate.

These review sessions can determine whether a staff member receives a full stipend pay or not.

“If Senate reviews someone and feels that there is reason to reduce their stipend after completing the review process, there is room to do that,” said Haley Courtney, vice president of ASB, via email. “That reduction amount is at the jurisdiction of the Senate.”

Student Senate members submit a one-page bi-semester report to the Board of Directors for their own stipend review, as per the constitution. Stipend reviews for the Student Senate are largely based off of attendance, the constitution stating that for each meeting missed, five percent is deducted from their semester stipend.

Stipend amounts for each staff position are decided upon in the fall when the board of directors votes on their budget. From this budget, the Board of Directors, Student Senate, Media Board and Campus Activities Board are all paid.

Funds for this budget are taken from the $300 student fee on every bill. From the $300, ASB receives $125, according to Nicholas Erze, ASB director of finance.

From the money of the initial budget, the Board of Directors and the Media Board separately allocate how much each sect of the board will receive. For example, the Media Board was given $70,000 for its budget – $25,000 dollars was budgeted for the Point Weekly while $5,000 was budgeted for Driftwood.

Other members of ASB staff, like assistants to board directors are paid by the hour, excluding them from ASB’s stipend pay.

Gracik explained that pay is given to each position according to its nature. For those positions that are of a clerical nature, the pay is hourly, but for positions that are more project based, those staff members will get their pay in a stipend amount.

“It works out better for the student, in terms of pay, when it is stipend based,” Gracik said.

All ASB personnel are currently in the process of review for stipend pay.