Wednesday, April 19, 2000

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

The Daily Gazette

Swarthmore College
Wednesday, April 19, 2000
Volume 4, Number 117

NEWS IN BRIEF

1) Much ado about money

2) World news roundup

3) Campus events

SPORTS IN BRIEF

1) Women’s tennis has tough loss

2) World sports roundup

3) Today’s and tomorrow’s contests

WEATHER FORECAST

Today: Scattered showers. High in the mid 60s.
    I’ve developed a new mantra–I say it every time the rain starts
to make me depressed.

Tonight: More showers. Low around 50.
    “April showers bring May flowers.”

Tomorrow: Even more showers. High near 70.
    Unfortunately, this mantra never helps.

NEWS REPORT

1) Much ado about money

Student Council turned its attention last night to the latest activities
funding controversy–the announcement that Budget Committee will slash the
budget of all activities funded by the Student Activities Fund by 19
percent.

The reason for the cuts was, of course, a financial shortcoming–the
budget cut comes as a result of a depleted capital replacement
account.  This fund, which the SBC describes as being marked
“for the maintenance of large and expensive pieces of capital equipment,
like vans and computers,” had routinely been tapped in previous years to
fill deficits between activity budget requests and available funds.  Once
endowed to the tune of $300,000, the account has since dwindled to less
than one-tenth that amount.  Even after the cuts take place, having been
passed by the Council with a vote of 9 for the budget and 1 abstaining,
capital replacement will still only have a relatively measly $24,000,
which will spell continued budget cutbacks, at least for the next two to
three years.

With a surprisingly non-existent student turnout that caught
already-entrenched SBC Assistant Treasurer Marvin
Barron ’02 off-guard, Student Council was left to its own
devices to tackle the issue. Although SC reached a general
consensus that this year’s cuts were understandable and necessary, the
members spent a large deal of time grappling with ways in which future
reductions could be minimized or prevented altogether.
   
Regarding the SBC’s commitment to future financial solvency, it was
suggested that the committee adapt newer and better-defined funding
policies, while at the same time promoting better spending procedures in
the groups that it does fund, with the emphasis on more efficient
activities budgeting.  Barron seconded this latter notion, promising to
press for “more accountability” as to where the money actually does go, by
scheduling regular meetings with group leaders on topics such as
accounting and effective allocation of the limited
resources.  Nevertheless, despite these efforts towards more careful
funding, neither Barron nor SBC Treasurer Laura Farra ’01, could guarantee
that the capital replacement fund would be off-limits for future financial
droughts, citing its strategic value as “a last resort source.”

Student Council also took accountability as a theme in their attempts to
counter these latest cuts.  Nick Attanasio ’00 called for a renewed
investigation of all the funded activities by the Charter Committee.  Louisa
Whitfield-Smith ’02 said that “groups have to prove themselves valuable to
the campus,” affirming Attanasio’s push for 1 and 3 year club charters.
Still, Student Council co-chair Jordan Brackett ’01 noted that the groups
which might not live up to the expectations of these committee reviews
“are probably not taking up a lot of money anyway.”

In addition to this proposal, the SC agreed to lobby other parts of the
school to take up their fair share of the funding responsibilities.  For
instance, in order to remove a $40,000 burden from the SBC, the Council
suggested returning the Halcyon yearbook to the Alumni Office.  In the
same vein, the over $30,000 which is given to club sports could possibly
be delegated to the Athletics Department, which had footed that bill in
previous years.

After all the passionate debate concluded, however, the results were
still in the same cold numerical format as always: $417,000 requested,
$350,000 initially allocated, $284,000 allocated after the 19% cut, with
an additional $40,000 in place for the SBC to work with next year.  And,
putting as positive a face on it as she could, Farra noted, “Yes, it was
19%, but it was 19% across the board.  At least it was fair.”

Which is about as much as you can ask from any budget.

-j.s.

*****

2) World news roundup

An Air Philippines jetliner carrying 130 people crashed in the southern
Philippines today. Rescuers said there were no signs of survivors. …The
US failed yesterday to have China’s human rights record censured by the
United Nations, after developing countries supported Beijing’s cause,
as they have in eight previous years. The 53-nation commission voted 22-18
for a “no action” motion, but the US insisted it succeeded in drawing
attention to China’s record and said the margin of the vote was the
narrowest in five years. …A bill that would create the closest thing in
America to gay marriage won preliminary approval in the Vermont state
Senate yesterday. The measure would enable gay couples to form “civil
unions” that would entitle them to all 300 or so rights and benefits
available under state law to married couples. …According to CNN, a
Canadian juvenile has been arrested and charged in connection with the
so-called “denial of service” attacks in February against some of the
Web’s most high- profile sites. …Zimbabwe’s president again gave his
tacit approval Tuesday to black war veterans occupying several hundred
white-owned farms in the former British colony, telling a national
television audience that white farmers were “enemies of the state.” …The
parents of Amadou Diallo have filed a $61 million wrongful death lawsuit
against the New York police officers who shot Diallo last year and the
city of New York.

*****

3) Campus events

“Queer Identity in Asian American”,Faculty Dinner lecture by Kevin
Kumashiro, Minority-Scholar-in-Residence, Education Program
IC big room, 6:00 p.m.

Passover Seder
Bond Memorial Hall, 6:30 p.m.

Alumni Panel
Scheuer Room, 7:00 p.m.

Pre-Departure Foreign Study Orientation
Dupont 161, 7:00 p.m.

Dialogues
Wharton E/F Lounge, 9:00 p.m.

Dialogues
Mary Lyons Lounge, 9:00 p.m.

Film Society Screening
Dupont 161, 10:00 p.m.

*****

SPORTS UPDATE

1) Women’s tennis has tough loss

The women’s tennis team lost to the College of New Jersey 0-9
yesterday.  Especially close matches were played at #1 singles–Jen Pao
’01 lost 2-6, 6-4, 3-6–and at #4, in which  Laura Brown ’00 lost 2-6, 6-7
(4). The team is now 8-5 overall.

*****

2) World sports roundup

Fans in Atlanta welcomed John Rocker back the the Braves with a standing
ovation yesterday. Rocker was making his first appearance since serving a
two-week suspension for making offensive comments about gays, foreigners,
and other minorities. Rocker pitched a scoreless ninth against the
Phillies, fanning one of the four hitters he faced. …The NHL playoffs
aren’t over yet for the Sabres, but the odds are still against
them. Buffalo avoided a sweep Tuesday, beating the Flyers 3-2 on Stu
Barnes’ goal at 4:42 of overtime. It was a huge win for a team that exited
the playoffs with OT losses in 1998 and 1999. …Charles Barkley’s big
farewell to the NBA will be today in Houston, in the Rockets’ last game
at home. Barkley called an end to his 16-year career after he ruptured a
knee tendon Dec. 8 in Philadelphia. He is making this final appearance
because he wants to end his career by walking off the court, not being
carried off it.

*****

3) Today’s and tomorrow’s contests

TODAY
Baseball vs. Washington, 3:30 p.m.
Women’s lacrosse vs. Muhlenberg, 4:30 p.m.
Men’s tennis vs. Bates, 3:00 p.m.
Men’s lacrosse vs. Washington, 3:30 p.m.
Women’s tennis vs. Haverford, 3:30 p.m.

TOMORROW
No contests scheduled for tomorrow.

*****

Quote of the day:
“Don’t accept your dog’s admiration as conclusive evidence that you are
wonderful.” — Ann Landers

*****

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Editorial Board
    Jeff Heckelman
    Melanie Hirsch
    Claire Phillips-Thoryn

Staff Writers
    Karla Gilbride
    Jeremy Schifeling
    Kai Xu

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