In accordance with AMS bylaws, the AMS published their commission budgets.
On Sept. 19, each AMS commissioner presented a condensed goal plan and budget for approval by AMS Assembly in Mitchell Hall. Most commissioners have balanced their budget and Assembly approved all budgets unanimously.
The AMS commission budgets use dollars from undergraduate students’ activity fees to fund student events and services.
Callum Fraser, AMS commissioner of campus affairs, wants to streamline the event sanctioning process and expand the role of the special projects manager.
Assembly allocation for campus affairs increased to $44,000, from $55,000 in 2022-23 to $99,500 this year, almost doubling the budget from last year when the commission ran a $42,903 deficit. The commission will allocate $6,000 to establish harm reduction initiatives on Homecoming weekend and St. Patrick’s Day, while allocating $29,997 towards bursaries and grants handed out on a rolling basis to help students navigate financial stress.
Julian Mollott-Hill, AMS commissioner of external affairs, is expanding the housing resources fair and mending the fraught relationship between Queen’s students and the Kingston community through an in-person University District Summit where community members can come together to pass motions and host workshops.
The commission’s budget decreased by $2,000 from last year, and Mollot-Hill is shifting half of his salary to the Academic Grievance Centre (AGC) budget, which is totaling $34,746 for the year. Mollot-Hill attributed the change to a $10,000 difference in the commission’s allocation from Assembly.
“In order to use student dollars as effectively as possible, we had to put half of my salary into the Academic Grievance Centre budget because we can only use the student activity fee for the Academic Grievance Centre,” Mollot-Hill said.
Mollot-Hill assured Assembly AGC services wouldn’t be impacted by the change.
The social issues commission (SIC) internal and external are budgeted together. Since this is the first year there will be two full-time commissioners for the full year, salary expenses have increased. The SIC set aside $35,000 for student grants and bursaries.
The SIC (Internal) Ruth Osunde is revising the hiring equity policy for the AMS, as well as promoting a sexual health campaign in collaboration with the commission of campus affairs.
The SIC (External) Khadija Farooq is expanding the AMS equity library and reinstating equity committees which were dissolved last year. The commission is projecting a $647 deficit.
Ryan Kuhar, AMS commissioner of environmental sustainability, grew produce over the summer to donate to the AMS Food Bank. The commission is organizing six Sustainability Hub events over the course of the year with environmental speakers, while hosting an environmental gala to oppose development on the Davis Tannery site.
The commission’s revenue totals $106,835, with $11,000 allocated for a new assistant manager position. An additional $35,569 is designated for grants provided through the Sustainability Action Fund.
This year, Dreyden George, AMS commissioner of clubs, increased spending to support clubs through special projects and club outreach. An additional $6,722 will be allocated for special projects.
The clubs budget saw a small increase from 2022-23. George is working on a multitude of projects, including equipment borrowing programs and professional development training workshops for clubs.
The AMS’s Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance (OUSA) budget’s largest expense is membership fees at $69,660, with the other $25,100 being spent on conference expenses. Mollot-Hill and Vice-President (University Affairs) Victoria Mills will be attending OUSA conferences this year in Waterloo, Hamilton, and Toronto.
“The vast majority of expenditure out of the OUSA budget comes from travel, taxi, accommodations, and meals, which are particularly expensive for the two general assemblies,” Mills said.
AMS Secretariat Alysha Ahmad wants to mandate in-person office hours for Internal Affairs Office (IAO) employees and offer in-person voting for AMS elections, according to the IAO consolidated goal plan. Salary and wage expenses eat up most of the budget, with $71,153 allocated towards personnel.
An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated in the first sentence and headline that the AMS published commission budgets for the first time in two years. The AMS did in-fact publish commission budgets in the last two years. Incorrect information appeared in the Sept. 22 issue of The Queen’s Journal.
The Journal regrets the error
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