Privilege Fee Committee amends bill recommending decrease to Fine Arts entities


An out-of-schedule privilege fee meeting occurred on Thursday to finish the Fine Arts Bill amendments. During the meeting, the Privilege Fee Committee amended a bill recommending a decrease to the School of Music, Theater and Dance.

To better represent the state of operations for MTD, the committee merged the line items “music department — choral and opera” and “music department – band and orchestra” into one line item: “music department.”

The committee previously gave the allocation a proposed 35 percent decrease, leaving $43,225 in each of the next three fiscal years. The committee also proposed a 35 percent decrease to theater and dance, giving them $49,692.50 and $11,700 respectively. However, the proposals were held in committee for another week in light of missing information surfacing.

Some numbers were not presented in the original Fine Arts budget presentation to the committee, showing greater harm to the departments.

Sara Wallace, student senator and senior in biochemistry, recommended reducing the original 35 percent decrease to 20 percent for music and theater and 25 percent for dance.

“Looking at the cuts, I would feel comfortable with music and theater at 20 [percent] because I think they’re still reducing most of those advertising fees and having to switch up their performance — which performances they’re choosing and whatnot,” she said. “The only reason — with dance — I went with 25 [percent] was just because, yes it’s not a proportional number to each group, but I do think it’s a more proportional impact.”

This budget will give music new funding of $53,200; theater will receive $59,840 and dance will receive $13,500.

Max Harman, committee member and junior in global food systems, said these disproportionate numbers do not reflect any favoritism to one department over another.

“If we’re clear with why we’re delivering cuts where, it’s just based on the impacts,” Harman said. “Different line items have different impacts.”

The motion to refer the amended bill back to student senate passed 8-1-0. It was presented at the meeting held on Thursday, March 11.

“I think [the committee] did a really good job in terms of due diligence for students, so I feel very comfortable sending this back to senate and defending it,” Madison Brown, committee chair and senior in finance, said.

The next Privilege Fee Committee meeting is 5:30 p.m. March 15 in Wildcat Chamber.

My name is Sean Schaper, and I'm the news editor for the Collegian. I’m a junior in journalism with a secondary focus in film studies. I grew up right outside of Kansas City in Leawood, Kansas. As a first-generation K-Stater, I look forward to leaving behind accurate coverage for the current and future Wildcat community.