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If at First You Don’t Succeed…

Laura McQuillan



A special General Meeting (SGM) will be held this Wednesday to discuss and vote on proposed changes to the VUWSA Annual Subscription.
VUWSA President Nick Kelly has proposed that the current subscription of $99 be increased to $120, and be adjusted in subsequent years by the weekly-wage index. The subscription was last adjusted in 1998, and Kelly says that the expansion of VUWSA services along with eight years of inflation have led to a difficult financial situation for VUWSA, which reported a $100,000 deficit this year. Kelly says without the increase, “fundamental cuts” will be made to VUWSA services and funding in years to come.
The proposal to increase the subscription was debated and voted on at an SGM two weeks ago, but failed to gain the two-thirds majority needed to pass before attendance dropped below the required quorum of 100 students. An Annual General Meeting (AGM) scheduled to follow the SGM two weeks ago also failed to make quorum.
Debating Society Vice-President Chris Bishop spoke against the proposed increase at the last SGM, despite having received $10,000 in VUWSA sponsorship for debating earlier this year.
Bishop told Salient that rather than an increased subscription “VUWSA services could be drastically reduced”, and that, in his personal opinion, VUWSA should receive some form of return from recipients of funding.
“The Debating Society obviously gained the benefits of the money, but so did VUWSA in terms of promotion and exposure and that’s a good reason, that’s the rationale on which the proposal was put,” Bishop says.
VUWSA Constitution enthusiast Nicholas O’Kane has also proposed two motions on the subscription, which are intended to either change the subscription to $110 or retain it at the current $99.
An AGM will follow the SGM, at which several proposed constitutional amendments meant for the last meeting will be carried over and voted on, with issues tabled including the VUWSA electoral system, Salient Charter and executive portfolios.
The SGM will be held on Wednesday at midday at the Mount Street Bar and Café.