Who are the candidates?

Jaya Ryan from the ‘Grassroots ANUSA’ ticket 

Blake Iafeta from ‘Do Better! With Blake Iafeta’ 

On their main goals in the role

Ryan would have three main priorities as treasurer: (1) setting up an ANUSA run night cafe business in Kambri (following on from “the work started by the current Treasurer, Jin), (2) significantly increasing student assistance grants by working with the ANU Foundation (an ANU-run charity which provides funding for scholarships, student assistance and campus renovations) and bidding for more in the SSAF bid and (3) reforming the Ethical Sponsorships Committee into the Ethical Finances Committee, expanding its powers to include “vetting suppliers for the ANUSA business, BKSS and ANUSA generally” 

Iafeta’s goals would be to ensure that “every single cent” improves student welfare, to transparently represent the student body’s wishes, to diversify revenue streams to reduce the SSAF as well as increase “direct financial support to students”. This direct financial support would involve ensuring student access to essential supplies (especially following COVID-19) as well as increasing ANU Counselling funding. 

On how they would ensure adequate funding is put into maintaining ANUSA’s support services, particularly during COVID-19 

Ryan wants to increase funding to cater for student demand for support students, especially in 2 areas that have been recently under strain: the ANUSA legal service and ANUSA provided student assistance grants. In light of these problems, he is planning on “bidding for more than double what ANUSA received in the last SSAF bid” for student assistance grants, and will “collaborate with the ANU Foundation to provide even more funding for these grants”.

Iafeta emphasises that it is crucial to expand support services – as has become “extremely evident over the last 18 months”. They promise to “work towards increasing funding for ANUSA’s support services by developing other revenue streams and attempting to cut the Executive’s stipends”. 

On what they will be changing in the SSAF bid this year 

Ryan says that the most significant change if he is Treasurer will be “increasing student assistance grants from $50,000 to $120,000, $160,000 for the hiring of a new lawyer and paralegal and increasing funding for clubs by $25,000”, working with Grassroots’ Clubs Officer Candidate, Phoenix O’Neill. He also plans to begin “compensating Clubs Council for their work by setting aside a $6000 pool for CCE stipends. His full draft SSAF bid and plans for negotiations can be found here

Iafeta is yet create his draft SSAF bid. 

On how they will diversify ANUSA’s income streams to ensure it isn’t solely reliant on SSAF 

Ryan has 2 solutions to diversity ANUSA’s income streams: (1) setting up the Night Cafe, building on the “substantial progress that Jin has made this year”, and (2) through negotiating with the ANU Foundation to set up a “mutually beneficial partnership” in order to distribute more student assistance grants, which Ryan promises will mean “more money for student assistance grants… which will be independent from SSAF”. 

Iafeta plans to diversify ANUSA’s income streams by “working to create a permanent student-run opportunity shop”, as an alternative to selling second-hand items online. The candidate states that “this will make it much more convenient for students who may need to leave some clothes behind when they leave, or someone who no longer requires a textbook”.

On how they will ensure financial accountability 

Ryan promises to make better use of Financial Review Committee (FRC) recommendations, characterising their report as too-often going unread, meaning that “their recommendations are never implemented”. He has a plan with Ben Yates, Grassroots’ General Secretary Candidate, to conduct a policy audit, which would include going through past FRC reports to implement some of the recommendations.  

Iafeta plans to be “as transparent as possible” and to disclose “as much information to students as [they] can”. They promise to “make it known” that they will always be open to questions.