Student Government kicked off its first Senate meeting of the fall semester with a few representative changes, comments about block tuition and a budget presentation.
Budget and Appropriations Committee Chair Andy Mason presented the 2012-2013 Activity and Service Fee Budget, which is proposed to be $17,558,432.
The new budget would increase funding by 5 percent for SG, RecSports, the Reitz Union and Student Activities and Involvement. The Reitz Union and SAI split over the summer.
The 2012-2013 budget will not be finalized until it is approved at each of the next two Senate meetings, which are scheduled for Sept. 6 and Sept. 13.
Written amendments to the budget can still be presented, and Senate will accept questions at the next two meetings.
Nominees to the Election Committee were also approved. Student Body President Ben Meyers endorsed his choice over speakerphone on a cellphone held to the microphone.
Student Body elections are scheduled for Sept. 27 and 28.
Meyers also addressed the Senate in person and discussed block tuition.
He said block tuition supporters claim the system would encourage students to graduate faster.
However, Meyers said that push was unnecessary because UF's four-year graduation rate in the last year jumped from 58 percent to 64 percent.
Meyers said the Student Body deserved the credit for that jump.
He pointed out that students paying their way through UF will likely graduate earlier because of financial reasons.
Meyers said he hoped to tell the Senate next week after a Board of Trustees conference call that block tuition had been "put off indefinitely."