April 25, 2019 | 60° F

RUSA bill was created to give next e-board stipend, not current

After listening to Rutgers University Student Assembly Parliamentarian Samuel Clark present on the bill that would grant RUSA executive board members a stipend for their dedication, I would like to apologize for the offense I caused and correct my misconceptions. Last Thursday, I wrote an article falsely accusing RUSA members of neglecting their responsibilities and trying to take funds intended to help students.

First, I want to apologize to RUSA, because the idea of awarding stipends to RUSA e-board members was not a RUSA idea –– Rather, it was the idea of one man in RUSA, Samuel Clark. He researched the proposal, worked on it for months and presented it Thursday night to the RUSA student body and visitors. He was not acting out of greed, but in hopes of compensating future RUSA leaders for the time they invest in positively impacting the Rutgers student body. 

Second, I want to clarify misconceptions I had and subsequently disseminated. This bill was to stipend next year’s e-board, not this year’s e-board. This year’s e-board is not being paid for the work they do on behalf of the student body. Samuel Clark, the man who wrote the bill, would not be paid even if the bill was passed. 

Next, I would like to explain that funding for these stipends is not intended to come from student fees or other University groups. Funding is intended to be awarded from grants that are outside of Rutgers. Samuel Clark was adamant that the salaries, totaling $15,904 a semester, would not come at the expense of other student groups. As to the allegation that RUSA members might spend a lot of time accomplishing very little, there are a few points to clarify. Ask a RUSA member what RUSA accomplishes. Sam Clark pointed out that RUSA is responsible for the route of the LX bus, the water fountains around campus and the extending dining hall hours. RUSA e-board members meet throughout the summer and school year to accomplish these goals. 

As such, RUSA was not presenting this bill out of greed. The bill came from a member who would not have make a cent if his bill came into fruition. I hope this exonerates RUSA as a whole and members of RUSA from the scathing misinformed criticism I wrote against them on Thursday.

Talia Friedman is a School of Arts and Sciences senior majoring in economics and Middle Eastern studies.

Talia Friedman

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