Due to a breach of Associated Students of Colorado State University bylaws, the Creative Writing Reading Series at Colorado State University is no longer funded by ASCSU for the rest of the 2016-17′ academic year.
The rule in question is related to how a student organization advertises in relation to funding received from ASCSU’s Board for Student Organization Funding (BSOF). BSOF bylaws dictate that a student organization cannot advertise for an event with the ASCSU logo prior to approval of funding. Advertising can occur prior to funding approval without the logo or advertising can occur after funding approval with the addition of the logo.
“(BSOF) had made accomodations for them in the past regarding this rule, changes were not made,” said Michael Wells, ASCSU director of finance. “For me to create a sense of transparency, I wanted the board to be aware (of the breach this time) … to make sure the group is set up for success in the future.”
BSOF is the board that funds registered student organization events with up to $1500 per year for either one event or multiple. Typically, a student organization will meet with Wells six to eight weeks prior to the event to ensure the budget is correct and the event is set up before the organization will present to the board. The board then votes yes or no on whether or not the event will be funded by ASCSU.
The yes or no vote is based off of viewpoint neutral criteria. Wells said they look at if the event will actually happen, if it is free to students and if the event will benefit students.
In regard to the suspension of the reading series, Wells said they have discussed it, it is done, they violated the rule and the hearing was held.
“Nothing is wrong with (the reading series’) events,” Wells said. “(BSOF) talked with the group and worked with them to make sure the same rule is not broken again. It wasn’t anything like, ‘No, we don’t fund this anymore.'”
Wells said the group is suspended for the year, but he believes they may be eligible to apply for funding again in March. By March, however, this year’s funding will likely be spent, according to Wells.
No other groups have been suspended for funding so far this school year. There have been no other BSOF hearings this year and no automatic suspensions of organizations in relation to funding.
The number of groups suspended during the course of a school year depends on the year, according to Wells, in part because the bylaws are ever-changing.
“(There is) nothing on the end of ASCSU that is too strict,” Wells said.
BSOF tries to stress meeting with Wells and having a working knowledge of the bylaws before moving forward.
Reasons an event like the reading series could lose funding when presenting an event to the board would be if the nature of their event changed. For example, if the series decided to only hold the event for English students, rather than all students, they would be denied funding from ASCSU.
The Creative Writing Reading Series is organized by the English department, with events on Thursday nights during the semester. Events are open to the entire student body and Fort Collins community.
Collegian reporter Rachel Telljohn can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @racheltelljohn.