Editor’s note: Editor-in-chief Grace Gorenflo and General Manager Allen Vaughan were not involved in the reporting or editing of this story.
The Committee for Fee Allocations and University Program and Facilities Fee users met Saturday to discuss the proposed budgets for the 2022 fiscal year.
CFA is in charge of recommending the allocation of University Program and Facilities Fees, which are also known as student fees, to the Association of Students of the University of Nebraska senate every year.
There are two groups of fee users, Fund A — which includes the Lied Center for Performing Arts, The Daily Nebraskan, The DailyER, University Program Council and ASUN — and Fund B — which includes Nebraska Unions, Campus Recreation, the ASUN Student Readership Program, Parking & Transit Services and the University Health Center.
Fund A is for student managed groups and services, while Fund B is for operating and management costs.
The university has added mandatory increases that include 1.5% for salaries, 1.6% for benefits not including health insurance, 7% for health insurance and 1.5% for utilities.
ASUN, Nebraska Unions and Campus Recreation all requested an increase to their budget for the 2022 fiscal year.
ASUN requested a budget of $535,929, which is an increase of $16,697 from the 2021 fiscal year budget. According to the budget request, there are increases in salary as well as a 7% increase in employee benefits. That increase is partly due to an employee retiring, according to ASUN President Roni Miller. ASUN also requested a 10% increase in funds for supplies and materials.
Nebraska Unions requested an increase of 2.2% for its fiscal year 2022 budget. Its budget for the 2021 fiscal year was $4,933,044 and the requested 2022 budget is $5,043,508. Much of the increase is due to the Nebraska East Union becoming fully operational, as well as the mandatory increases in salary and benefits for staff, according to Ryan Lahne, director of Nebraska Unions.
Campus Recreation requested a $101,610 increase in budget for the 2022 fiscal year. According to the budget request, most of the increases are in the total personal expenses section, which is mostly due to the mandatory increases, Jacob Gideon, CFA chair, said.
Parking & Transit Services and the ASUN Student Readership Program are the only organizations that requested decreases for their 2022 fiscal year budgets.
The Parking & Transit Services proposed budget for the 2022 fiscal year is $1,164,107, which is $146,880 less than the 2021 fiscal year budget. The main reason for the decrease is due to the lower sum of money required for contract services, according to the budget request. One of the big portions of the contract services is buses, and due to COVID-19, buses are not running as frequently, which means not as much money is required for it, Gideon said.
The ASUN Student Readership Program has requested a budget that is $49,965 less than its 2021 fiscal year budget. This program provides students free access to a variety of newspapers that include both hard copies and digital versions. Miller said the reason for the decrease is that the contracts for the newspapers ended up being less than expected.
The Lied Center for Performing Arts, The Daily Nebraskan, The DailyER and the University Program Council all requested budgets that were the same as their 2021 fiscal year budgets.
The University Health Center has requested a 2022 fiscal year budget of $7,160,477. That number includes the University Health Center, Counseling and Psychological Services and Big Red Resilience & Well-being.
Holding the meeting virtually rather than in-person presented some difficulties, but overall Gideon said he felt that it went well and the next steps in the process will be announced soon.