Acknowledgment, Recognition, and Budget Policy Adopted March 27, 2016

Article I - Summary

Official Student Organizations at Washington and Lee University may be classified as Law School organizations, acknowledged organizations, or recognized organizations. Recognized organizations may be funded by the Executive Committee.

Article II - Law School Organizations

I. If a student organization is strictly a part of the School of Law, it may be recognized in accordance with the Student Bar Association's law student organization recognition policy.

a. Upon recognition of a new law student organization, the SBA shall appoint a representative to meet briefly with the Executive Committee during a business meeting. This representative will describe the newly recognized organization to the Executive Committee and send a digital copy of the organization's file for Executive Committee records.

II. The Student Bar Association shall allocate funds to Law School Student Organizations.

Article III - Acknowledged Organizations

I. Acknowledged organizations may not seek funding from the Executive Committee. These organizations are not eligible to receive funding from the Executive Committee due to restrictions outlined in Article XI, Section II, Parts e-g of this policy.
II. Acknowledged organizations shall receive a page on the Executive Committee website. This page will include a brief description of the club and contact information for group's current leadership.
III. All acknowledged organizations will be included in the Student Organization Handbook to be distributed at the activities fair each fall.

a. Organizations may submit changes to their respective sections in the handbook through the Continuing Active Status application.

IV. An organization seeking acknowledgment shall provide the Executive Committee Vice President with a brief description and contact information for current leadership.

a. The Executive Committee will decide whether to acknowledge the organization by majority vote at the first business meeting following receipt of the required information, so long as the required information was submitted more than 24 hours before the meeting.

Article IV - Recognized Organizations

I. Recognized organizations shall be given their own account with the business office upon recognition and will be eligible to apply for budget allocations in May, October, and January.
II. Recognized organizations shall receive a page on the Executive Committee website. This page will include a brief description of the club, contact information for club's current leadership, and the club's constitution.

a. Recognized Organizations may submit additional resources to be included on their respective pages through the Continuing Active Status application.

III. All recognized organizations will be included in the Student Organization Handbook to be distributed at the activities fair each fall.

a. Organizations may submit changes to their respective sections in the handbook through the Continuing Active Status application.

IV. Any recognized organizations that become inactive shall have materials archived should future students wish to restart the organization.

Article V - Cost Classification of Recognized Organizations

I. There shall be six categories relating to an organization's overall cost used to classify recognized student organizations seeking funding from the Executive Committee. These classifications shall be Highest Cost, Higher Cost, High Cost, Average Cost, Low Cost, and Lowest Cost. A final decision of these classifications rests with the Executive Committee.

a. Factors that shall be considered by the Executive Committee when classifying organizations shall include

i. Type of student organization
ii. Membership size and diversity
iii. Community outreach, both on campus and beyond
iv. Number, frequency, and scale of events
v. Organizational Structure
vi. History, including past management of EC funds

b. The Executive Committee and the Student Bar Association shall be Highest Cost organizations.
c. Newly recognized organizations shall be classified as Low Cost or Lowest Cost in their first year.

i. Exceptions to this rule may be made upon motion by an Executive Committee member with two-thirds approval of the Executive Committee.

II. These classifications shall act as guidelines for student organizations as they apply for budget allocations in May. These classifications become meaningless after budget allocations are decided in May. Each organization's will be classified yearly as a part of the CAS application.
III. The Executive Committee shall inform organizations of their cost classification by the end of the first week of spring term and at least 7 days before budget applications are due.

Article VI - Applying for Recognition

I. A new organization may apply for recognition in October, January, or May. The Executive Committee Vice President, upon consultation with the Executive Committee, shall set a deadline for all Student Body Recognition (SBR) applicants wishing to be considered for a recognition hearing.

a. Recognition hearings may be held on the same day as budget hearings.

II. Student Organizations seeking recognition from the Executive Committee must fill out a SBR application, which can be found on the Executive Committee website, http://ec.wlu.edu and submit it by email to the Executive Committee Vice President.

a. As a part of the SBR application, the organization must submit a Constitution based on the interests of its members. Issues that must be addressed in the Constitution include, but are not limited to:

i. History of Organization (if known)
ii. Mission statement, including the purpose/focus of the organization
iii. Requirements for membership
iv. Organization of Leadership/Officers (not including specific names)

1. These must describe the specific duties associated with each position as well as the election process

v. How the organization will be beneficial to Washington and Lee University and/or the surrounding community

b. After recognition, the organization's Constitution will serve as a reference for future members of the Washington and Lee student body. Future student generations may use an archived Constitution to restart an inactive recognized organization. The Constitution should, therefore, provide a thorough description of the organization.

III. If the organization is a club sport, the SBR Application must be pre-approved by the Director of Campus Recreation before presenting it to the Executive Committee along with the group's Constitution. If the sport is denied "University Club Sport" status, it may seek to become a general club or organization.
IV. Following a recognition hearing and consideration of the SBR application by the Executive Committee, the Executive Committee shall decide whether to recognize the organization by a majority vote. Following this vote, the Vice President shall forward a copy of the full SBR application to the Office of Student Activities along with a brief justification of the Executive Committee's recognition decision. The leaders of the organization shall be copied on this communication.

a. The leaders of the organization should contact the Office of Student Activities in order to utilize a cubicle in the Commons, register for the Student Activities Fair, and reserve on-campus spaces.
b. Student organizations denied recognition by the Executive Committee may seek acknowledgment from the Executive Committee or recognition from the Office of Student Activities. Recognition from the Office of Student Activities does not result in recognition by the Executive Committee. A denial of recognition by the Executive Committee cannot be appealed. Organizations may reapply for Executive Committee Recognition during the next round of SBR applications.

Article VII - Continuing Active Status

I. In March following the election of the new Executive Committee officers, the Executive Committee will publish an application for Continuing Active Status (CAS) on the Executive Committee website (http://ec.wlu.edu).
II. As a part of the CAS application, an organization will submit:

a. The name and contact information of the president or equivalent officer(s) for the next academic year;

i. Any name and contact information given in accordance with this section will be listed as a contact on the organization's page on the Executive Committee website.

b. The name and contact information of the treasurer or equivalent officer(s) for the next academic year;

i. Any name and contact information given in accordance with this section will be the organization's contact with the business office.

1. This officer shall be responsible for attending a training with the Business Office regarding the use of Executive Committee funding or shall find an alternate who will provide them with the information from the meeting.

ii. This person may be the same person listed under Article VII, Section II, Part a.

c. The name(s) and contact information of any student representing the organization during May budget allocations;

i. When the creating the CAS application, the Vice President shall note in writing on application that, if possible, the individual(s) listed as the leaders of the organization are the preferred representatives when the organization applies for budget allocations in May.

d. How much money was spent during the year;
e. Any updates to the organization's Constitution; and
f. Any updates to the organization's page on the Executive Committee website.

III. All CAS applications must be submitted to the newly elected Executive Committee Vice President before 5:00 PM on the last day of exams for the Undergraduate winter term.
IV. All organizations submitting a complete and satisfactory CAS application before the deadline will be considered active for the next academic year. Organizations submitting a CAS application will not need to appear before the Executive Committee in order to remain recognized.
V. Recognized organizations failing to submit a CAS application may be considered inactive by the Executive Committee.

Article VIII - Inactive Recognized Organizations

I. Inactive recognized organizations are still considered recognized by the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee shall consider an organization to be inactive if:

a. The organization fails to submit a CAS application by the deadline and a majority of the Executive Committee votes in favor of inactivity;
b. There are no active members of the organization;
c. The organization lacks an acceptable structure of organization; or
d. The organization holds no meetings or events over the course of an academic year.

II. Inactive organizations will not be eligible to receive funding during budget allocations in May, October, or January. They shall maintain accounts with the Business Office that are monitored by the Executive Committee Vice President.
III. Upon being classified as inactive, an organization's website page will be marked as inactive but remain on the Executive Committee website.
IV. Inactive organizations may regain active status through the SBR application process.

a. Organizations that remain inactive for more than two academic years will have any unused funds returned to the Student Body Working Reserve, provided those funds did not come from an academic department.

Article IX - Revocation of Acknowledgment or Recognition

I. The Executive Committee reserves the power to revoke the recognition or acknowledgment of a student organization at any time by a two-thirds vote of the Executive Committee.
II. Causes for revocation may include, but are not limited to, the following:

a. Misuse of Executive Committee funds; or
b. Conduct unbecoming of a Washington and Lee organization.

III. If an organization's recognition is revoked, all of that group's Executive Committee funding will roll back into the Student Body Working Reserve. The Executive Committee Vice President may ask the Business Office to close the organization's account, provided the Office of Student Activities does not recognize the organization.
IV. The organization's website page will be marked as inactive, but remain on the Executive Committee website.

Article X - Student Organization Funding

I. The Executive Committee shall require all organizations that request funding to be active and recognized or concurrently seeking recognition in accordance with the Executive Committee's Policies regarding recognition of student organizations. In order to be considered, an organization must submit an application for funding.
II. The Executive Committee shall hold its primary allocations in May. It shall also hold emergency allocations in October and January.

a. The Executive Committee shall allocate no more than 88.5% of the next academic year's total funds before the end of the undergraduate spring term.
b. The Executive Committee shall allocate no more than 92.5% of its total funds before the end of the undergraduate fall term.
c. The Executive Committee shall allocate no more than 96.5% of its total funds before the end of the undergraduate winter term.

III. During the undergraduate spring term, the Executive Committee shall make an effort to have at least one member of the EC meet with every highest cost, higher cost, high cost, and average cost organization in order to discuss the budget application process and learn more about the organization's role on campus. Low cost and lowest cost organizations may request such meetings if they plan to apply for funding in addition to their automatic allocations.
IV. The Executive Committee shall require all recognized organizations requesting funding to present an accounting of their income and expenses over the previous year, as well as a projection of their income and expenses for the next year following the budget request. The president of the requesting organization shall certify that the representations in the aforementioned documents are made in good faith to the best of his or her knowledge.
V. Organizations classified as Highest Cost, Higher Cost, High Cost, or Average Cost shall appear before the Executive Committee for a budget hearing. Budget hearings shall be conducted in open session and any student is welcome to observe.
VI. Organizations classified as Low Cost or Lowest Cost shall only appear before the Executive Committee in the event that the Executive Committee has a question regarding its application or if the organization chooses to apply for more funding by presenting the EC with compelling reasons for needing more funds.
VII. The Executive Committee shall deliberate on allocations in closed session.

a. Highest Cost organizations should not expect to receive an allocation greater than $120,000 unless they present exceptional circumstances to the Executive Committee during the budget allocation process.
b. Higher Cost organizations should not expect to receive more than $75,000 unless they present exceptional circumstances to the Executive Committee.
c. High Cost organizations should not expect to receive more than $10,000 unless they present exceptional circumstances to the Executive Committee.
d. Average Cost organizations should not expect to receive more than $2,000 unless they present exceptional circumstances to the Executive Committee.
e. Low Cost organizations shall receive funds in the following manner:

i. The Executive Committee shall initially allocate $350 to Low Cost organizations, and these organizations may receive up to an additional $150 in the same year.

1. If the initial $350 are exhausted, the organization may directly petition the Executive Committee Vice President for up to an additional $150, and the Vice President shall have the authority to approve or deny this request.

a. The Vice President shall contact leaders of Low Cost organizations at the beginning of each academic term to remind them of this option.
b. If the Vice President denies the request, then the student organization may appeal this decision in writing to the EC president, who will put the matter to a vote during the next business meeting. The EC may overturn the Vice President's denial by a majority vote.

ii. The Executive Committee may allocate additional funds during emergency allocations.

f. Lowest Cost Organizations shall receive funds in the following manner:

i. The Executive Committee shall initially allocate $125 to Lowest Cost organizations, and these organizations may receive up to an additional $100 in the same year.

1. If the initial $125 are exhausted, the organization may directly petition the Executive Committee Vice President for up to an additional $100, and the Vice President shall have the authority to approve or deny this request.

a. The Vice President shall contact leaders of Lowest Cost organizations at the beginning of each academic term to remind them of this option.
b. If the Vice President denies the request, then the student organization may appeal this decision in writing to the EC president, who will put the matter to a vote during the next business meeting. The EC may overturn the Vice President's denial by a majority vote.

ii. The Executive Committee may allocate additional funds during emergency allocations.

g. The Executive Committee shall allocate no more than $40,000 to Mock Convention each year. It shall be the responsibility of Mock Convention to budget these funds over the course of the four-year Mock Convention cycle.

i. Exceptions to this rule may be made by the Executive Committee. This decision shall be made as a part of budget deliberations and be considered during any vote to approve the budget.
ii. Following their initial appointment but before the end of the same term, the core leadership shall meet with the Executive Committee in order to discuss funding for the cycle.

1. Before May allocations, the Financial Chair must submit a nonbinding plan regarding EC funding requests to the Executive Committee.

iii. In the year of the convention, the Executive Committee will meet with the outgoing core leadership after the convention but before the end of the academic year.

h. A student organization with a particular cost classification may receive less funding than an organization in a lower-cost classification depending on the results of the Executive Committee's budget allocation decision.

Article XI - Use of Executive Committee Funding

I. Student organizations will use their funds in the following order:

a. Executive Committee funds will be used first.

i. Unused Executive Committee funds will be returned to the Student Body Working Reserve at the close of the fiscal year.

1. At the discretion of the Executive Committee, an organization may maintain some or all Executive Committee funding for the next fiscal year. This decision shall be made as a part of budget deliberations and be considered during any vote to approve the budget.

b. Any fundraising funds will be used second.

i. A student organization shall maintain fundraising funds from year to year.

c. Any department funding to the organization will be used third.

II. Items not funded by the Executive Committee shall include the following:

a. Transportation: The Executive Committee shall not fund the following items related to transportation for students or university employees including but not limited to airfare, rental of vehicles, tolls, etc. However, the Executive Committee may include in the organization's allocation mileage expenses for driving to and from organization's events.
b. Uniforms: The Executive Committee shall not fund any articles of clothing for use as uniforms. Any article of clothing made exclusively for members of the organization shall be considered a uniform.
c. Lodging: The Executive Committee shall not fund any expenses related to lodging for students or university employees including but not limited to hotel reservations, fees, and/or room service.
d. Alcoholic beverages: The Executive Committee shall not fund any expenses for alcohol.
e. Politically partisan organizations and religious organizations: It is the Executive Committee's policy not to directly fund politically partisan organizations or organizations that advocate a certain religious faith.
f. Honor societies: It is the Executive Committee's policy not to directly fund honor societies. 
g. Greek organizations: It is the Executive Committee's policy not to directly fund Greek-affiliated organizations that have been chartered and active at Washington and Lee for more than six consecutive years.

III. The Executive Committee, if necessary, shall define other budgetary items that are not funded as deemed necessary.
IV. The Executive Committee may fund any of the aforementioned budgetary items as deemed necessary under exceptional circumstances.

Article XII - Objectives of Recognized Student Organizations

I. Student organization leaders will make an effort to responsibly manage the membership and outreach of their respective organizations. Depending on the current student generation, organizations will contract, grow, or remain the same. Student organization leaders hoping to successfully lead their organizations and receive increased funding for their respective organizations should, generally speaking, strive for the following ideals:

a. Academic Interest Groups

i. Should strive to reach out to and include students whose area of study is outside the group's interest
ii. Should be successful in positively impacting the campus community, Rockbridge County, and beyond
iii. Should host interdisciplinary events with other student organizations or academic departments outside the area of interest
iv. Should be effective in recruiting and retaining members to carry out its mission
v. Should use funding to advance its resources and provide relevant information to the community

b. Advocacy Groups

i. Should have a clear message that is communicated effectively to the campus community, Rockbridge County, or beyond
ii. Should strive to include diverse populations of the student body and members of the Rockbridge community in its discussions
iii. Should host interdisciplinary events with other student organizations
iv. Should use funding to share the group's message and provide relevant information to the community

c. Club Sports and Athletics

i. Should involve as many students as reasonably possible without exhausting resources
ii. Should provide opportunity for recreation and/or competition
iii. Should represent the school well in competitive events (even if not winning, exhibiting the spirit and sportsmanship of a general)
iv. Should use funding to provide resources for members to improve and enjoy the sport

d. Law and Debate

i. Should strive to include students from diverse areas of study
ii. Should provide opportunity for development of skills and critical thinking
iii. Should represent the school well in competitive events (even if not winning, exhibiting the spirit and sportsmanship of a general)
iv. Should use funding to provide resources and opportunities for members to develop their skills

e. Multicultural Student Organizations

i. Should celebrate a race or culture at Washington and Lee, in Rockbridge County, or beyond
ii. Should reach out to and involve students who are not as knowledgeable about the group
iii. Should advance community discussion of issues affecting the group
iv. Should host interdisciplinary events with other student organizations
v. Should use funding to effectively advance conversations about important issues facing Washington and Lee or a larger segment of society.

f. Performing and Visual Arts

i. Should strive to include students whose area of study is outside performing and visual arts
ii. Should be successful in positively impacting the campus community, Rockbridge County, and beyond
iii. Should host interdisciplinary events with other student organizations
iv. Should use funding to advance the organization's contributions to the performing and visual arts and allow for the artistic development of its members

g. Politics

i. Should not be politically partisan or support particular candidates or ideologies
ii. Should strive to include students whose area of study is not politics
iii. Should be successful in positively impacting the campus community, Rockbridge County, and beyond
iv. Should host interdisciplinary events with other student organizations
v. Should use funding to involve students and other members of the community in political discussions and share information about the political process

h. Publications

i. Should strive to reach out to students from diverse areas of study
ii. Should provide opportunity for development of skills and critical thinking
iii. Should use funding to responsibly achieve the goals of the organization while also striving for high quality and quantity of production

i. Service

i. Should strive to include a large and diverse population, which may include undergraduates, law students, and other members of the community
ii. Should foster a spirit of community engagement and facilitate learning through service
iii. Should be effective in recruiting and retaining members or volunteers to carry out its mission
iv. Should use funding to maximize the impact of the organization

j. Special Interest Organizations

i. Should strive to include students from diverse areas of study
ii. Should make efforts to involve the community in activities associated with the organization
iii. Should use funding to buy materials and host events that allow students to experience the club's area of interest

k. Student Life

i. Should strive to have a diverse membership given the size of the organization
ii. Should reach out to a large and diverse population, which may include undergraduates, law students, and other members of the community
iii. Should actively improve the student experience at Washington and Lee
iv. Should host interdisciplinary events with other student organizations
v. Should use funding to buy materials and host events that most effectively achieve these goals

l. No organization recognized by the EC should

i. Be open only to particular population or students of a certain academic discipline
ii. Host events that are required for academic credit by a department
iii. Fulfill the exact same role as another student organization

II. Student organizations meeting all of the recommendations within their respective categories may not necessarily receive the same level of funding. Final judgment rests with the Executive Committee to weigh the overall impact and financial need of each organization submitting a budget request.

Article XIII - Monitoring of Student Organization Accounts

I. Pursuant to the Student Body Constitution, the Vice President will monitor expenditures of Executive Committee funds by officially recognized organizations.