Fine Arts Executive Honorariums Officially Up

The Fine Arts Student Alliance budget, which includes an increase in executive honorariums, was officially passed at the FASA meeting on Nov. 1.

A preliminary budget had been passed at a meeting on Oct. 4, and was pending final approval by Council. That preliminary budget included an increase from $750 a semester to $3,000 for VPs, as well as doubling the current $1,500 per semester paid to the president.

In a bit of confusion, attendees were not given a copy of the budget five days prior to the meeting—a violation of FASA bylaws—nor was there an agenda topic to approve the budget.

“The FASA exec was going through the meeting under the idea that their budget had already been approved,” said former FASA councillor and current Board of Governors representative AJ West, who was at the meeting. “Legally, that wasn’t the case.”

The bylaw stating the budget must be provided five days in advance was suspended in order to approve the budget.

The FASA executive chalked this up to a miscommunication. Councillor Ali Moenk proposed an amendment to the agenda that would add a vote on the budget, which was passed.

West called the presence of the executive during the debate and vote “a conflict of interest,” due to their stake in the budget being approved.

During discussion, FASA President Paisley Sim stated that if the budget was not approved, there would likely be some resignations.

“The nature of FASA is that clubs get funding directly, so nobody wants to piss off the executives,” said West, who opposes the increase. “People think, ‘If I vote for this then that’s a good thing because the executives will [remember me when] they’re considering people for applications.’

“This isn’t to say that I disagree; I think everyone should be paid for their work. It just seems like an unreasonable increase.”

West blamed apathy on the part of Fine Arts students who don’t realize where their money is going. “If Fine Arts students want to give their executive $36,000 [in total honorariums over the year], then I guess that’s that,” he said.

“People need to show up to these meetings and demand that more be done for the students with their money.”
When contacted, Sim declined to comment.