News

Investigation reveals potential misuse of funds by SBVPO

Potential transgressions by the Student Body Vice President of Organizations (SBVPO), Trevor Hadick, have recently come to light. Among these possible transgressions are the improper use and allocation of funds, money that comes from our student activities fees. These transgressions may be in violation of Student Government Fiscal Policy (herein referred to as the Funding Bylaws).

Student Government financial data was volunteered by the Student Body Vice President for Finance (SBVPF). We have redacted pieces of these documents for privacy concerns, and they can be found at http://pdfsr.com/profile/cmuthetartan/.

The first instance of Hadick misusing his allocation was when he used SBVPO money to buy jackets and polo shirts for the Committee on Student Organizations [CoSO]. The cost also includes embroidery of said clothing. The jackets were given to the CoSO directors, including Hadick. This appears to be in violation of the Joint Funding Committee (JFC) Bylaws, which applies to Student Government funds via Article V Section A of the Student Government Constitution. The bylaws state in Article 5, Section D, Item 1, on lines 240–41, that JFC funds cannot be used for “personal equipment, which is defined as equipment or clothing that will not be available for use by future members of an organization.”

The total cost of these items was slightly under $900.

The clothing itself does not become a violation until fiscal close. When asked to comment, Hadick claimed he was pursuing avenues to cover expenses, including having members pay for the clothing and raising revenue through fundraising, but no tangible action has been taken at this time to remedy the situation. The dates of the transactions span from Jan. 8 to 19.

There were also some potentially problematic activities with allocations of SBVPO funds, specifically the Collaborative Fund that is available for organizations to apply for via the Common Funding Application on The Bridge.

After an email requesting information on funding, Hadick sent another Student Government official documentation of the expenses of the Collaborative Fund. In this email, Hadick reported that he had allocated $1,000 to Women’s Club Soccer to offset the costs of a spring recreational league.

There is no evidence available to us to suggest that Women’s Club Soccer received any allocation from the Collaborative Fund. This allocation does not appear on the Women’s Club Soccer Team’s transactions, nor does Women’s Club Soccer appear in the list of Collaborative Fund applicants. We have been unable to reach representatives of Women’s Club Soccer for comment.

There is, however, evidence of an allocation of $1,000 from the SBVPO account to the AC Mellon Men’s Soccer Team that was stated to be for spring recreational league fees.

The journal entry transfer request shows the reason for the transfer as “Special Allocation: The mens [sic] and womens [sic] team will be try [sic] to organize rec [sic] events in the spring. This is their new initiative.” It is unclear what is meant by "organize" in this context.

In addition to SBVPO, Hadick serves as the co-president and authorized signer of AC Mellon Men’s Soccer.

Evidence of the allocation appears on both the SBVPO and AC Mellon Men’s Soccer accounts, and both transactions were processed on Feb. 9, 2016. Again, there was no application to support this allocation.

When asked for comment, Hadick encouraged us to review the list of applications. We did find two applications under AC Mellon Men’s Soccer for the Common Fund, but they do not correspond to the $1,000 from Feb. 9. One application is an extension of the other, and they jointly requested funding from Senate and GSA to cover expenses related to a tournament from October. These applications were individually created and submitted within the bylaws of Student Government and are not potential transgressions on their own.

Our investigation is ongoing.

Update (4:20 p.m.): An official from Women's Club Soccer claims not to have received any funds from this allocation, nor to be enrolled in a spring recreational league.

Update (4/10/16): Multiple officials from Women's Club Soccer claimed to have no knowledge of the allocation they are listed on.

Further, The Tartan has acquired applicants to the Common Funding Application. We filtered it for requests to the SBVPO for Collaborative Fund money. The only discrepancy between this document and the one uploaded by Hadick in a response to this article is the presence of "Club Soccer" in Hadick's document. Hadick did not respond to a request for comment. The document can be found here. Personally identifiable information has been redacted for privacy concerns.