ASUO Constitution Court rules to return $142,000 Mallard Madness funds to over-realized fund

Constitution Court Justice Allison Apana declared Tuesday that the $142,000 for the Mallard Madness Concert must be returned to the over-realized fund.

“Because the Student Senate allocated $142,000 from the Over-Realized fund without complying with the requirements of Senate Rule 8.9, the court must invalidate this allocation,” Apana said.

According to Apana, Senate Rule 8.9 was put into place to ensure an ethical and transparent process for the over-realized funds to be allocated.

“Though the Student Senate shall ‘still make all final decisions on [the] allocation of Over-Realized Funds’ the Court deems the Over-Realized Funds process is put in place by the Student Senate to keep the allocation of these funds fair, public, and transparent, and must be followed,” Apana said.

Apana concluded that since the Senate Rule exists, and the body did not follow its own rules, the court must order the money be returned to the over-realized fund.

“The Court notes that its role is to neutrally interpret and enforce the Student Senate Rules, in conformity with the ASUO Constitution,” Apana said. “The Student Senate retains the power to amend its rules to modify the current Over-Realized Funds allocation process. While a rule change may make sense, it is not within the Court’s purview to make the law.”

The concert’s cost spurred hours of debate during a mid-November ASUO Senate meeting. ASUO President Laura Hinman respects the decision but will continue to organize Mallard Madness and seek alternatives for funding.

“We look forward to continuing our work on this collaborative project and continue looking for other means of sponsorship,” Hinman said.

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