EVVYs over budget, asks SGA for money

by Beacon Staff • November 28, 2007

The EVVYs, which is not an SGA-recognized group, usually makes an appeal to the SGA each spring semester to help fund the show.,This year's EVVY Awards producers are banking on the help of the Student Government Association earlier than usual, making an appeal for $4909 this semester, according to a request filed with the SGA.

The EVVYs, which is not an SGA-recognized group, usually makes an appeal to the SGA each spring semester to help fund the show. This year, the producers were forced to request funding this semester to cover operational costs. Some of these costs included $1624 for a new computer, $385 for a new printer/fax machine, as well as money to cover updating their Web site and copying expenses. The SGA has approved their request.

Each year the EVVYs award outstanding talent at Emerson College, modeling the show after awards ceremonies such as the Oscars and the Emmys. The organization that produces the show is the largest extracurricular group on campus, and has given past awards to celebrity alumni like Denis Leary and Henry Winkler. The ceremony usually takes place in May after the spring semester ends.

Kristen Murtha, one of the show's executive producers, said via e-mail that the money leftover from last year's awards was not enough to cover this year's expenses, which were more than usual due to defunct computers and printers.

"We simply did not have the funds this year to cover the operational costs we were anticipating," she wrote. "SGA graciously agreed to help us out."

One of the more costly items on the appeal to the SGA was a request for $1000 to send members of the organization on a "roll-ins trip," on which students travel to Los Angeles to meet with actors and filmmakers to film congratulatory remarks to the winners of the show.

According to the appeal, faculty adviser Peter Chvany is stepping down from his position and the producers are unsure how much money the new adviser will be willing to invest in the trip. Chvany was unavailable for comment.

The organization is currently "operating in a deficit and therefore does not have the appropriate funds to operate progressively in preparation for the show," according to the show's executive producers' cover letter on the appeal.

At the session in which the appeal was discussed, several SGA members proposed that they only grant enough money to cover the cost of the computer and printer. SGA Vice President Samantha Baime, who is also the Beacon's photography editor, proposed the lesser grant. The motion was denied and the majority of the SGA voted in favor of providing the whole amount.

Any Emerson organization can appeal to the SGA once per semester by submitting a form explaining how much money they need and what it will be used for, said SGA President Scott Fisher. In approving the money requested, the SGA determined the EVVYs' request was in accordance with all of the guidelines that are required for an appeal.

Before appealing to the SGA for funds, organizations are encouraged to seek out co-sponsorship from other organizations or utilizing any other resources they may have available. Some of the organizations the EVVYs are expecting funds from include Emerson Independent Video and The Office of Housing and Residence Life. In addition to an appeals form, those looking for funds from the SGA must provide a detailed breakdown of their budgets and a list of co-sponsors, according to the SGA's Treasurer's Handbook.

Money for the show typically comes from advertising and fundraising events, submissions, ticket sales, alumni and the SGA, Murtha said. She could not provide an estimate on how much the show generally costs overall, because the total changes every year.

"We raise all of our own money ourselves," she said in her e-mail. "It is a great opportunity for students to learn the skills of fund-raising and communication with alumni and the communities of Emerson and Boston."