How Do I Budget For My Event?

Budgeting is very important when considering your request for funds from the AAS, since the AAS has strict rules regarding over-spending and over-budgeting.

Very broadly, there are two types of funding requests that the AAS sees: funding for items of continued use, such as equipment, and funding for events.

Budgeting for Items of Continued Use

Often, clubs and student groups, especially club sports teams, will come to BC meetings to request funding for items that they will continue to use throughout the semester and into future semesters. Be it a sports team, a reading club, or the Outing Club, when requesting money to purchase an item, include the following in your funding request:

  • The cost of the item. This is rather self-explanatory; if the Water Polo team wants to request funding for ten practice water polo balls that cost $30 each, then they will need to request $300.
  • Applicable tax for the item. In Massachusetts, sales tax is 6.25%, so the Water Polo team needs to be sure to include $18.75 in their request for tax.
  • Shipping costs for the item. In today's online world, most purchases are made online. Optimally, clubs will plan ahead of time and thus their purchase will not be of an urgent nature that would require overnight shipping, in which case, if the option for free shipping is available from the vendor, the Water Polo team would not add shipping costs in their request. However, not all vendors offer a free shipping option, so the cost of shipping must be included in your request.

Budgeting for an Event

This is much more broad, as each unique event will require its own items to be funded. Use the below as a guide when planning to make a funding request.

  • If your event requires an honorarium payment...
    • Remember that the honorarium will be halved initially so that you can seek alternate sources of co-sponsorship, and that you must return to the BC the next week to request the honorarium remainder. Please see "Timetables" for more information.
    • Does your guest speaker require an overnight hotel stay? If so, add $160 to your funding request for your guest's stay at The Lord Jeffery Inn. Be sure to make this request early so that we are able to secure our rate with the Inn.
    • Does your guest speaker require transportation funding? If so, check online the cost of transportation from the speaker's point of origin to Amherst, and be sure to include the cost of a van (Valley Transporter, etc.) from Bradley Airport or Boston's airport if applicable. Be sure to make this request early, as travel prices greatly increase as you approach your travel date.
  • If your event requires food...
    • Does your club have enough food funding left, as stipulated by the AAS's funding guidelines for food? Be sure to keep track of your food spending for the semester, since the AAS will not allocate more money toward food if you have already spent up to our limits.
  • If your event is an off-campus conference/competition/event...
    • Have you booked an AAS van? Does your club qualify for Transportation funding? Be sure to include this in your funding request.
    • Does your event require Hotel and Accommodations to be made? Be sure to request $150 per room per night from the BC, as hotel room prices may increase from the time that you check the cost of hotel rooms before the BC meeting to the time that you actually reserve the hotel rooms after Senate approves your funding request the following Monday.
    • Does your event require payment of a Registration Fee? Be sure your request for this fee does not exceed $100 per person.
  • If your event requires the purchase of materials, supplies, or equipment...
    • Be sure to follow the guidelines stipulated above in "Budgeting for Items of Continued Use," since the same procedures apply: include the cost of the item, tax, and shipping in your funding request.
    • Be sure that Decorations for the event do not exceed the $50 Decorations cap.
    • Be sure that your purchase of materials, supplies, and equipment are able to be used by anyone who wants to attend the event, and, if possible, be sure that these items can be used at future events.
  • Regardless of your event, did you request Publicity funding, so that all Amherst students can be aware of your event and attend?