BROOKINGS – The South Dakota State University Students’ Association (SA) now has $50,000 more in its activity fund, thanks to a city council action this week.
Approving a new memorandum of understanding, the council made the student group a direct partner in the sharing of the 3rd B tax revenues collected by the city.
It isn’t actually new money – the students had received the event-promotion funding in the past – but what’s changed is that the council has cut out the middleman in the exchange.
Because SDSU students pay 3rd B taxes – “bed, board and booze tax” – on their meal plans, the city agreed to share that revenue with the Students’ Association. Third B revenues are typically used to fund promotions that will draw visitors to the city, and the university’s share of the money must be used in promoting weekend events that will keep students in Brookings.
In the past, the students had to present their funding requests to the city Visitor Promotion Committee, which then brought the requests to council. That group has been dissolved and its functions taken over by the Brookings Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, which is a private organization. As a result, the students will now deal directly with the city manager, who will verify that the funds are being used as the city-student agreement requires.
SA President Jameson Berreth was on hand at Tuesday’s council meeting to discuss the new arrangement.
“We’re very happy with the memorandum of understanding,” Berreth said.
He told the council that the Students’ Association must ratify the new agreement with the city, but that the group had already appointed a committee to oversee use of the tax monies.
Contact Ken Curley at kcurley@-brookingsregister.com.