Mark Lombardi-Nelson and Quincy Lopez won the Student Government presidential election with 70 percent of the vote.
Lombardi-Nelson, the current SG vice president, ran on a platform of creating “real college experiences” through more granular management of club events and more involvement with activities in Tampa.
Lombardi-Nelson’s opponents, James Scott and his running mate, April Parsons, ran on a platform of technocratic efficiency. In their view, SG should be a provider of services rather than the center of campus culture.
To bring some civility and functionality back to the SG, Lombardi-Nelson said he will focus on improving the flow of information between the branches, and will enforce greater accountability within the executive branch.
“I would like to take this time to thank everyone who has supported me throughout this entire experience,” Lombardi-Nelson posted to the “USFSP Know It All’s Guide” Facebook group. “I would not be here without all of you. It has been a great election and I truly applaud the other candidates because they ran a great campaign.”
The agreement that saved USF Tampa from the substantial cuts originally proposed by the Florida Senate deferred some of the pain to the other regional universities in the system.
Initially, USF Tampa would have received a nearly 60 percent reduction to state funding through straight cuts and unfunded liabilities associated with Polytechnic being removed from the system. USF St. Petersburg was to take a $600,000 hit, a little over 2 percent, and Manatee-Sarasota would have gained an additional $1.7 million in state funds.
Under the budget approved by the legislature, USFSP will lose $5.1 million, 25 percent; USFSM will lose $3 million, 27 percent; and Tampa will lose $36.9 million, a 21 percent reduction. Each USF university is funded separately in the state budget, with each campus paying administrative fees to the system.
The legislature also voted to remove Polytechnic from the system, transferring students, faculty and the pharmacy school to Tampa. As part of that bill, USF Tampa will receive $6 million a year to fund the pharmacy school and $10 million a year for liabilities associated with Polytechnic’s removal.
Lawmakers assure state university leaders that the $300 million in cuts are temporary. To make up the funding difference, universities are to rely on their reserve funds for one year.
Those funds are primarily used to fill in gaps in the budget, provide for building projects or, in the case of USFSP, held in preparation in the event of a hurricane.
Students and professors will present on possibilities for the Student Green Energy Fund on Wednesday, March 21 in Davis 130 from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Some of the time will be used for brainstorming ideas on how to use the fund. USFSP students, faculty and staff may submit ideas and proposals online at usfsp.edu/sgef. Proposals should “establish or improve the use of renewable energy technologies or energy efficiencies that directly reduce the university’s greenhouse gas emissions, waste, and/or costs,” according to the website.
The March 21 green fee meeting will include information on the details of the SGEF, business aspects of proposals and overview of the proposal process, a brainstorming session and information on an upcoming grant workshop.
The SGEF collects $1 per credit hour from students to fund renewable energy projects on campus.