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Parking report presented

By Netta S. Smith

Spectrum Volume 18 Issue 01 - August 24, 1995

Richard Alvarez, director of Public Safety, Health, and Transportation, addressed the Staff Senate at its August meeting.

Alvarez acknowledged that trying to find a parking place on campus is "probably one of the greatest frustrations people have."

He told the Senate that a previously announced plan to change parking around the Drillfield to "straight-in" parking and to put a bike path on one side of the Drillfield had been abandoned because "losing more parking spaces would create problems. Although a bike lane would be a nice benefit, it doesn't seem feasible at this time," Alvarez said.

To compensate for spaces lost due to construction, Alvarez said, faculty and staff parking will be added to the area behind the math module near the power plant. An additional 150 faculty/staff spaces were added off of Prices' Fork Road and Stanger Street. No other new parking lot construction has been approved, Alvarez said, although it is in the "talking stage."

In response to a question about whether or not Spring Road would be straightened, Alvarez said that there has been discussion, but no decision has been made.

Asked whether or not Parking Services publishes an annual report of expenditures and revenues, Alvarez said that the information is contained in the university's budget. "All funds go to support parking," Alvarez said. He added that state law requires that parking, as an auxiliary enterprise, be self-funded. "One half of the revenues come from fines, and the other half from fees," he added.

When asked about the possibility of a parking building on campus, Alvarez said that it would cost $6 million for a 500-space facility, which would have to be built over an existing 200 spaces. He said it did not seem to make sense to incur such a cost, which would require raising parking fees by $40 or $50 per person, for a net gain of only 300 spaces.

Alvarez said the Donaldson Brown area is "about 90 spaces short," and that other parking areas on campus also are often crowded.

In response to questions about the new parking decals, Alvarez said, "We didn't have a good lot of parking decals--they didn't meet our standards." He recommended cleaning the window, then dipping the decal in cold water before applying it. "If the decal falls off, you can appeal if you get a ticket," he said.

Wyatt Sasser said that Parking Services is more "user friendly" than in recent years, and that appealing a ticket is easier and quicker than it used to be.

Finally, Alvarez asked Senate members to remember that the parking enforcement officers "have a difficult job to do, and they have been verbally and physically assaulted. Say a kind word to them," he said.

In new business, the Senate heard a report on the need for a group insurance policy that part-time staff members can purchase. At the present time, part-time faculty members can obtain coverage under a group policy, at their own expense, but no such coverage is available to the part-time staff.