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Although his arrival wasn’t officially connected to Stony Brook’s Earthstock festival, scientist and television personality Bill Nye was the perfect speaker to end the campus’s week of environmental education. On April 19, 2013, the USG Lecture Series presented a talk from Nye that centered on using scientific reasoning to solve the world’s problems, including those related to global warming. The former host of PBS’s Bill Nye the Science Guy and current executive director of the Planetary Society, Nye is no stranger to explaining scientific concepts to the masses. At this lecture, he encouraged the audience to aim for “big picture thinking” while using fewer resources. Inspired by such ideas as Richard Smalley’s discovery of buckyballs and the invention of liquid metal batteries, Nye discussed a variety of ways that science should be applied to improve society as a whole. “You could give up, and you could run around screaming,” said…

In the Feb. 19 issue of The Stony Brook Press an article re- garding a survey scandal at USG was published. In the wake of the publication of this article, numerous actions have taken place. One such action included the short-lived protest against Anna Lu- bitz, the president of USG, which was shut down by the Adminis- tration after a harsh Facebook comment was deemed as a threat towards Lubitz. Another outcome of the publication of this article has been an out-lash at The Press. The words “gossip” and “sensationalism” have been thrown around a lot. The editorial board at The Press would like to stress that in no way do we feel that the USG article published in our last issue met those descriptions. We strive to bring important issues to the student body, the issue of our student elected representatives taking advantage of their power was one that…

USG unanimously approved a fall budget revision on Oct. 18 that added funding to fifteen on-campus clubs and organizations, and an additional $18,000 to the Student Activities Board budget. SAB, the USG-funded agency responsible for large-scale events on campus, like Brookfest, already had an operating budget of over $510,000. Typically, clubs are only eligible to apply for increased funding during fall revisions if their budget had been cut by 50 percent or more. But SAB’s budget had only been cut 3.7 percent. Director of the Agency of the Student Activities Board Zach Guarnero doesn’t think it’s an issue. “We can’t actually apply for fall revisions the way any club can,” he said. “At the end of fall revisions there’s usually a lot of money left over and that gets divided among the agencies that USG runs.” USG Treasurer Allen Abraham also said that SAB cannot apply for the event and…

The changes to the Student Activities Board bylaws proposed by Undergraduate Student Government Sentator Kenneth Myers on Oct. 2 have been approved. Under the new bylaws, the name of SPA was changed to ASAB—Agency of the Student Activities Board—the SAB treasurer must maintain communications with the ASAB director, the director must also report to the SAB treasurer and secretary, as well as the other officers and the summer and winter activities committee laws were further detailed. “I decided to propose the changes because I was on SAB last year as the SAB treasurer and I realized that there were a lot of issues with it,” Myers said in a Facebook message. “Last year, I felt like a lot of our operations were a mess, which eventually led to my resignation from my position.” This “mess” included problems such as the board trying to approve allocations outside of open meetings, the…

This year’s Undergraduate Student Government budget has shown a relinquishing of the budget cuts that consumed almost every club during last year’s budget allocating. Almost every club received a small increase in their funding, while some, like the Fine Arts Organization and the Japanese Student Organization, received double the amount of the previous year’s allocation. There were, however, some notable exceptions to the increased funding. A number of religious organizations—Catholic Campus Club, Gospel Choir, Hillel, Orthodox Christian Fellowship, Intervarsity—all received a decreased amount in comparison to last year’s budget. The political clubs also saw a change with the College Republicans shrinking from $15,070 in the 2011-2012 academic year to $8,384 for 2012-2013. Interestingly, they still received more than the College Democrat’s $7,500 budget. Another development was the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transsexual Alliance’s budget increase. In the drastic 2011-2012 budget cuts that consumed almost every club, aside from the Student…

The Undergraduate Student Government’s event planning organization, the Student Activities Board, is responsible for roughly $534,000 of student money, and yet it has proven for the second year in a row that it is fiscally irresponsible. Last year’s SAB grossly overspent on the Bruno Mars concert, and yet the organization still received its $134,000 budget increase. Now this year, SAB has a $125,000 surplus of money that they will likely only spend a small fraction of before the end of the year. Punctuating this slew of numbers is the fact that SAB is crippled by disorganization and legally and financially at risk. This is due to its members’ disregard for the democratic process and their audacity to think themselves above the very laws that bind other campus clubs, from trying to use emails to allocate funds instead of doing so at open meetings to losing receipts that now place SAB…

The Student Activities Board (SAB), the event-­‐planning wing of the Undergraduate Student Government (USG) that is now equipped with a $534,887 budget, is clearly adept at putting on successful campus events. The White Panda concert last Friday proved that SAB’s current leadership plans to carry on the consistency and popularity of last year’s run of concerts, comedians and speakers, but with better economic sensibilities and the opportunity to build upon last year’s foundation. The concert, this year’s first SAB-­‐coordinated event, cost roughly $28,000 and nearly 1,100 students attended, according to estimates by USG President Mark Maloof. But the newly revised USG financial bylaws the senate passed at the beginning of the summer, which were presented to all clubs at the USG Leadership Conference on Saturday, September 10, make it clear that USG is set not only on decreasing the budgets of many clubs, but also on minimizing their influence in…