The Freerider’s Union of Colorado College (FUCC) has encountered its share of financial roadblocks as it transitioned into another year with new leadership. As one of the most active student groups on campus, the effects of its troubles have rippled throughout campus.
“FUCC is a club that embodies the playful nature and passions of many students here and it’s a huge loss to the spirit of this school when we can’t operate at our full capacity,” said FUCC co-president Alex Spectorsky
According to Vice President for Finance Alejandro Salazar, last year CCSGA awarded FUCC an $8,000 operating budget; $2,600, for first semester and $5,400 for second semester.
This year, FUCC was granted a possible $9,000; $3,600 for first semester, $4,500 for second semester, and $400 and $500 if they collaborated with another group for each semester respectively.
Despite this increase in funding, FUCC has encountered finance complications throughout the year primarily due to miscommunication between last year’s club head, CCSGA, and the current club heads.
“For the past two years, [FUCC] was run by an individual who handled all aspects of it,” said Spectorsky. “This year we have learned the hard way about dealing with budgeting issues and putting on school wide events.”
Spectorsky further explained how neither he nor co-president Taylor Rastello had managed a club budget in the past. Due to this inexperience and lack of clarification from last year’s president, Rastello and Spectorsky were unaware that they were required to apply for a special funding grant for the annual Rail Jam.
“Because we didn’t apply for special funding [for Rail Jam], our budget was completely drained by paying for the event,” said Spectorsky. “This left us with no money for buses.”
Thankfully, FUCC and CCSGA were able to collaborate so that FUCC could apply for the grant late and fund the remaining expenses after the event.
“FUCC applied for Rail Jam Special Events funding a week after the event happened,” said Salazar. “They were awarded $4,500 to break even for the event costs. In turn, this depleted their second semester operating budgets.”
To help compensate, CCSGA awarded FUCC an additional $2,500 to run buses for the rest of the semester, mostly to cater to underclassmen without cars.
“We still only have one bus ever other weekend as opposed to two buses every weekend,” said Rastello. “Kids come to Colorado to ski, and now they can’t always do that.”
Spectorsky and Rastello were also unaware that any unused money from first semester returns to CCSGA rather than rolling over into the second semester budget. Because only a few buses go out during first semester and movie showings are relatively cheap, $2,308.36 of FUCC’s first semester budget was returned.
“We are already planning on how to deal with our budget more effectively next year so that buses run off without a hitch every week and Rail Jam is even bigger and better,” said Spectorsky.
Spectorsky, Rastello, and third co-president Jeremy Harlam are also working to decrease the price of Winterfest, which was $190 this year.
“Keeping a strong relationship with CCSGA is essential to our operations,” said Spectorsky.