Students pass Bruin Bash referendum
By hong chen
May 10, 2013 1:12 a.m.
The original version of this story contained an error and has been changed. See the bottom of the article for additional information.
Students approved a fee-increase referendum in Thursday night’s undergraduate student elections to help fund Bruin Bash and the Enormous Activities Fair.
The ballot measure was approved with 60 percent of the vote.
The Bruin Bash Referendum will increase student fees by $1.33 per quarter starting in the fall, with $1 going toward creating a fund for Bruin Bash and 33 cents returning to students through financial aid, as dictated by University of California policy.
When the results of the vote were announced, cheers erupted from the crowd while many sections remained silent.
“Not only is Bruin Bash a time where UCLA students come together, (the Enormous Activities Fair) lets students explore their passions and find their home,” said Lauren Rogers, the incoming Financial Supports commissioner from Bruins United.
Bruin Bash is a two-day event that usually takes place at the beginning of every fall quarter and includes a concert, a film screening, a dance, a lounge and the Enormous Activities Fair for students, said Jan Tancinco, outgoing Campus Events commissioner.
Some students said though this referendum was important, the other ballot initiative, the Bruin Diversity Initiative, should have passed as well.
“Students should be focused on their needs, instead of their wants. Bruin Bash is important, but that’s a want,” said Tarik Takkesh of LET’S ACT!, fourth-year Arabic and neuroscience student.
In past years, Bruin Bash was primarily funded through USAC’s surplus funds – remaining funds from the previous council that are carried over and typically finalized in August – which have proven to be inconsistent in recent years, said David Bocarsly, outgoing USAC president.
The Campus Events Commission and Cultural Affairs Commission usually begin organizing Bruin Bash in May but funds usually do not become available until August, which can complicate planning, Tancinco said.
The Bruin Bash Referendum will set aside a secure fund of about $80,000 for Bruin Bash, which will help solve the financial inconsistency the council has faced in past years, Bocarsly said. Now, the surplus funds usually spent on Bruin Bash festivities can be allocated for student groups to use, he added.
“This is a great move for the future of Bruin Bash and will ensure the event happens every year which is definitely important for the UCLA community,” Tancinco said, upon hearing the news.
The last voter-approved student fee increase was PLEDGE, which passed four years ago and increased fees by $12.75 per year. It provided revenue to seven organizations including the UCLA Communications Board, which publishes the Daily Bruin.
Contributing reports by Estefani Herrera and Jenn Crane, Bruin contributors.
Correction: “Not only is Bruin Bash a time where UCLA students come together, (the Enormous Activities Fair) lets students explore their passions and find their home,” said Lauren Rogers, the incoming Financial Supports commissioner from Bruins United.