A change in policy leads to the regulation of club fundraisers

Jacqueline Barr

New parameters have been created to monitor overlapping fundraisers

After an onslaught of fundraisers around Valentine's Day, Club Commission and ASB have reached an agreement to devise a new process for campus fundraisers.

Previously, the only stipulation for a club fundraiser was that it had to be passed through Leadership Council any time prior to the event. However, faults with the current system arose during the last Student Council meeting when multiple fundraisers coincided with one another.

At the last Leadership Council meeting, there were requests from Food For All and Chinese Club to sell items around Valentine's Day. Additionally, other clubs like French Honor Society and Comickers had passed motions in earlier Leadership Councils to sell other items during the same time period.

MV Comickers was significantly hurt by the overlap in selling. 

"It impacted Comickers a lot because it was the one fundraiser that we were going to do this year. Last year we sold 120 roses and this year we only sold 24," president of Comickers Club senior Aprajita Yadav said.

Comickers was the only club to sell Valentine roses last year. However, this was a simple coincidence and not because of any regulation by Club Commission.

"I was under the impression that only one club could sell an item at a time. That's why I passed the motion for this in November," Yadav said. However, this year there was a large increase in the number of clubs fundraising on Valentine's Day, and her assumption was proven incorrect.
Questions of how the sales would be monitored arose during Leadership Council. The concept of a free market was discussed. Applying this principle to club policy would result in Club Commission not regulating the price of goods or grams sold in fundraisers.

Singh does not see the reasoning behind the lack of regulation. "The free market principal is a really hypocritical thing for Leadership to spout especially when Club Day prices are so limited," Singh said.

However, Club Commission member Junior Ashley Chen backs her decision.

"We wanted to regulate goods on Club Day because it's all in one area. But [sales] like rose grams are different because there are so many more factors. For example, Club A can decide to [fundraise] from March to April, but Club B can decide to do it from February to March." Chen said. "When Club A and Club B are selling at the same time and in the same place, it's a lot harder for them to make a profit because the bidding war is going to be insane,"

Over email, Club Commission and ASB decided on a new process for fundraisers. Clubs must now pass a motion for a fundraiser before any planning for it begins. For the motions passed during the last Leadership Council, some clubs had already arranged for or purchased their supplies before their motions were passed.

Club Commission and ASB finally decided that the number of sellers at a given time will not be limited, but a fundraiser may not continue for over a month. Also, if multiple clubs have similar fundraisers, clubs will have the option to discuss prices and logistics. Thus following free market principle but also placing some control in the hands of the clubs themselves.

"Basically, [Club Commission] didn't want to put a price cap [on grams or other goods]. So, if there are two or more clubs doing the same thing, we send them all an e-mail," Chen said. "They can talk about if they want to regulate the prices or if they don't, then it's their decision."