USG closes multiple RSO funds for semester

The Senate heard reports from the executive branch, CFO and various senators.

 Chief financial officer Khalil Daniels said all applications filed toward the Performing and Visual Arts Fund and the Professional/Academic Research Fund before the implementation of SB 143-13 were processed. (Nicholas Corral / Daily Trojan)

The Undergraduate Student Government senate heard reports from president Divya Jakatdar Tuesday night about ongoing priorities for her administration and from chief financial officer Khalil Daniels about the status of funding for registered student organizations for the fall semester.

President Jakatdar gave her monthly report on her administration’s projects and priorities. She reviewed progress on efforts to showcase student artwork on campus and at USC Village. She also highlighted efforts to revive administrative roundtables, which last year allowed students to communicate with administrators.

Additionally, Jakatdar announced USG’s work with the Los Angeles County Registrar of Voters in support of bringing polling sites to campus for the March 2024 primary and November 2024 general election. She also announced her administration would release the first nonconfidential communication post this Friday. These communications, posted on Jakatdar’s campaign account, will allow students a view into the communication between USG and the University.

CFO Khalil Daniels provided an update about the state of USG funding allocations for the semester. Last Tuesday, USG passed SB 143-13, allowing the CFO to close funding applications for the semester when funding categories used at least half of total funding for the school year. As a result, USG closed applications for the Performing and Visual Arts Fund and the Professional/Academic Research Fund for the fall semester. 

While he had been considering the bill for several weeks, it was only upon seeing the boards approaching the 50% utilization rate that Daniels introduced the bill. 

“Before we decided to implement the shutdown, we made sure that all the applications that we were handling were already processed,” said Daniels in an interview with the Daily Trojan.

Though the senate passed the bill last week, RSOs were only notified Tuesday morning. 

Daniels also said that the Philanthropy and Social and Recreation/Startup funds are expected to remain above the 50% utilization threshold that would trigger a shutdown. 

In his presentation, Daniels stated that funding applications for the spring semester would open Oct. 25 and with it the closed funding boards.

The USG senate also heard reports from senators Brandon Tavakoli, Rudra Saigal and First Generation Student Assembly advocacy liaison Patrick Nguyen.

Tavakoli discussed his efforts to extend funds given to students living in USC Housing for on-campus printing to commuter students and to increase data about issues related to course registration by the Office of Academic Records and Registrar and Information Technology Services.

Nguyen discussed efforts to increase accessibility and affordability of resources for first generation students via a pilot program, which will reimburse students for the cost of storage services over the summer.

Saigal discussed the lack of police accountability for the death of Jaahnavi Kandula, an international student at Northeastern University’s Seattle campus who was hit by a police vehicle in Seattle. He called attention to the use of force by the Department of Public Safety at a student protest against the presence of Turkish ambassador Hasan Murat Mercan at Annenberg Hall Friday, as well as DPS actions related to Kayla Love, a graduate student who experienced medical kidnapping in 2021 and pledged efforts to ensure accountability from DPS. 

“We must ensure DPS is held to a higher standard and a standard that places the well-being of our students at the forefront of our mission,” Saigal said.

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