The student news site of Diablo Valley College.

The Inquirer

The student news site of Diablo Valley College.

The Inquirer

The student news site of Diablo Valley College.

The Inquirer

Parking fee increase looms next semester

Although opposed by student leaders at Diablo Valley and Contra Costa colleges, a $5 per-semester parking fee increase is likely to join the continuing parade of fee hikes. 

The district governing board was scheduled to vote on the proposal Wednesday night, too late for The Inquirer’s press deadline.  

“It’s just one of those unfortunate things,” board President Sheila Grilli said in an earlier interview.  “Everything is going up.”

Put forward by district Police Chief Charles Gibson, the plan would raise semester passes from the current $35 to $40 next semester, while daily parking permits would increase from $2 to $3.

In return, students could buy semester passes online and use their credit or debit cards for daily permits from the parking lot machines.

But 75 percent of the $5 fee hike — $3.75 — would cover administrative fees charged by outside companies to handle the online and credit/debt card transactions, with $1.25 going to the district, according to the district’s calculations.

Of $469,000 generated by the new fees in the 2010-11 school year, $244,000 would go to the outside vendors, according to the projections.

The three-campus district would gain $114,879 in new income from the increase after deducting vendor costs and paying for automatic salary increases and $65,000 in expenses currently covered by the district, according to report.

That money would be kept in “a restricted reserve for future parking lot repairs and improvements, beginning in 2010/2011,” the report says.

If the increase poses a hardship, students can use public transportation or carpool with others, board President Grilli said.

“As a board member faced with millions of dollars of cuts, a $5 parking fee increase does not seem monumental,” she said.

But ASDVC President Lindsey St. Hill said the governing board did not make enough of an effort to get student input about the proposal.

“I just felt like we were swept under the rug,” she said.

The ASDVC voted to oppose the proposal at its Oct. 27 meeting, as did Contra Costa College’s student government. Only the Los Medanos College Associated Students endorsed it.

LMCAS President De’shawn Woolridge called the fee hike inevitable. 

“Until we can come up with another solution, we don’t have much of a choice,” he said.

Despite student opposition and concerns, Vice Chancellor Kindred Murillo predicted the governing board would approve the proposal.

“The bottom line is we’ve been cut in the district, and in order to provide services for students we need to raise some fees,” she said.  “I know it’s not popular.”



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Oksana Yurovsky, Staff member
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Parking fee increase looms next semester