Aid given to students affected by Katrina

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    TCU students who have been affected by Hurricane Katrina will soon be receiving aid from the Student Government Association. According to legislation passed by the executive board, full-time students and their families who were directly affected by the storm can apply for funding up to $1,000 per student.

    A committee consisting of Treasurer Matt Jacobson, Director of Finance Sebastian Moleski and Chairwoman of the Finance Committee Molly Marten will review all applications for aid. The proceedings will be overseen by an adviser from the office of Campus Life and must be unanimous, SGA President Dave Watson said.

    All board decisions are final and must be approved by the student body president, according to the legislation.

    The legislation calls for a fund of $10,000 to cover disaster-related expenses including, but not limited to, rent, utilities and travel for the students or their families.

    Trevor Smith, vice president for the House of Student Representatives, said the fund can be increased with the passage of additional legislation.

    “There is no cap right now,” Smith said.

    Strict confidentiality will be used in reviewing all cases, Watson said.

    “We don’t want specific students’ stories told to the world,” he said.

    Watson said the money will be taken out of the student body reserve fund.

    “We didn’t feel it was fair to take money from family weekend and other programs,” Watson said.

    The reserve fund, which currently has roughly $117,000 of available funds, is composed of money left over from previous years’ budgets, Watson said.

    SGA advisor Larry Markley said that although he was not an advocate for using student money for the fund, SGA has put together a good program.

    “We are in a very unusual situation,” Markley said. “Anything SGA can do I am very much in favor of.”

    Students said the program will be beneficial to those affected.

    “It is a good cause and should be done,” Tiffany Larronde, a senior radio-TV-film major said. “(Money) is what is needed.”

    Freshman history major Matthew Miller agreed.

    “The people affected lost everything,” Miller said.

    According to the legislation, the fund will expire Dec. 31.

    Applications for the fund are available online at sga.tcu.edu.