Volume 95, Issue 71

Thursday, February 7, 2002
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Day of Action protests sweep the country

London protest targets MPP's office

Candidates seek crucial political geek vote

Controversial speaker visits Huron

SSSC cash problem solved?

SSSC cash problem solved?

By Erin Conway-Smith
Gazette Staff

It seems next year's Social Science Students' Council may not be left in the red after all.

Financial inquiries made by councillor Eric Fortin have revealed the SSSC will have a budget surplus of $3,800 – possibly more – at the end of this year, not a deficit, which was earlier feared to be approaching $5,000.

Despite Orientation week-related losses of $10,494, numbers presented by Fortin at last night's SSSC council meeting showed the debt could be covered by revenues from the current year, a surplus of $9,000 left over from last year's council and a grant of $7,000 from the University Students' Council.

Fortin said he thought the USC grant had not been included as council revenue in original budget considerations by VP-finance Owais Rafiq because it had only been received recently, on Jan. 15, upon ratification of the SSSC budget – a stipulation required by the USC.

"I'm glad that it's finished, but it seems futile that it took this much work to find something so simple," Fortin said. "I'm upset because I don't think there will be accountability.

"The whole thing this year was for naught."

Fortin said he asked acting SSSC president Ashley Hale to make print-outs of the council's USC account, a process that took about 35 minutes and revealed important financial details.

"I'm very happy that it came out now and that we're okay," Hale said. "I wish we could have known this sooner."

Hale commended Fortin for his work in getting to the bottom of the council's financial matters.

Rafiq left last night's council meeting early to attend class and was later told of the numbers presented by Fortin.

"It's a positive thing for sure," he said, adding he needs time to digest the information before discussing where he may have been wrong.

He said he would "most definitely" be willing to meet with Fortin to discuss the numbers.

Rafiq has been working to acquire a grant from the USC's contingency fund as it was thought the SSSC did not have enough money to cover O-week losses.

"The USC grant was there to get us through rough times – if we find out there are no rough times and we don't need the grant, that's great," he said.

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