Student Government to review President Austin Graber’s veto


Caitlin Yamada

Student Government Speaker Kelsey Culbertson and Vice Speaker Jacob Schrader listen during the Student Government meeting Sept. 18 in the Campanile Room. Student Government discusses various bills and legislation that affect Iowa State and the community.

Cassie Lehmann

Student Government will be reviewing a bill to overrule President Austin Graber’s veto of a previously passed bill and looking upon funding requests from organizations.

At last week’s meeting, Senate approved the final draft of Priorities and Criteria for 2021.

President Graber vetoed article 2019-3-008 F, which passed by a margin of 23-1-0. President Graber laid out his thought process in a veto statement.

“Last week, the amendments to Priorities and Criteria 2021 passed through Senate,” according to the document. “One of the major changes within P&C prevents organizations from getting funding for international and ethnic food. After watching the 1 minute and 42 second debate from the livestream on this issue I went through the reasoning for the cuts.”

In his statement, President Graber said that cutting funds from organizations still allows them to function while cutting items such as international food and ethnic food from international organizations can impact the success of the organization.

“Another argument stated for the removal of this line is due to the fact that no other Big 12 Student Government funds international and ethnic food,” according to the document. “We should actually be proud of this as Cyclones in the ability to support these organizations through the funding of their food. We are not simply just funding food, but the cultural experience which I am sure students would be happy to have their fees go toward.”

President Graber listed an alternative funding possibility, the Excellence Account.

“Another account that could be used in the future is the Excellence Account as it is also not bound to P&C,” according to the document.” “The argument for this account is because international and multicultural clubs are unique in their current ability to have funds for food. With this same argument we should also have all of the Sports clubs funded through the Excellence Account because they are unique in the fact that they are able to receive funding for as many competitive trips funded as they want compared to one for a regular student organization. In addition, the Excellence Account does not also have the capacity to fund the amount of international and ethnic food requests Student Government currently sees.”

Last week, a number of changes were made to Student Government’s Priorities and Criteria requirements along with revisions to what they will be funding for the 2021 fiscal year. 

Iowa State requires students to pay a student activity fee of $38 per semester. This amount generates over $2.6 million in fee revenue, which is then distributed to campus organizations by Student Government.

Every year Student Government holds Annual Allocations, which is an event for clubs and organizations to request funds from Senate. Although next year’s requirements look a little different from previous years. 

If an organization plans on requesting funds from Student Government for the upcoming year, the organization needs to attend the one of the final informational sessions at 4:10 p.m. on Wednesday in Room 3228 of the Memorial Union, and 10 a.m. and 1:10 p.m. Friday in the Pioneer Room of the Memorial Union.

The Senate will review the bill introduced by Sen. Ludwig for himself, Sen. Roling, Sen. Mass and Sen. Stanley to overrule President Graber’s veto.

“I believe that the power of the President to have a veto is to correct a mistake and give the Senate the opportunity to fix the mistake,” said President Graber in his statement. “I believe that cutting international and ethnic food is extremely detrimental to multicultural and international organizations and would therefore ask the Senate to reconsider this amendment.”

Student Government will additionally review account funding.

The 2021 fiscal year the Analysis of Social Services Evaluation Team (ASSET) account was funded $211,000 and was to be divided amongst non-profit organizations.

Student Government intended to increase the funding by 2 percent every year, although with the Young Women’s Christian Association moving from funding through Annual Allocations back to the ASSET process.

Student Government will be voting that $48,000 be moved to the ASSET account from the Special Projects account, putting the new allocated ASSET account for 2021 total to $259,000.

Furthermore, the Atheist and Agnostic Society is asking for funding assistance to be able to screen a movie with the cost of $230 from the Senate Discretionary account.

The Ski and Snowboard Club is requesting $5,381 be transferred from the Senate Discretionary account to be able to attend conferences and competitions. The funding request will cover the club’s travel expenses, along with the racer fees and lift tickets.

All bills will be looked upon and voted upon separately at Wednesday’s meeting.

For more information or to contact your senator, visit The Senate meetings are open to the public at 7 p.m. Wednesdays in the Campanile Room of the Memorial Union.