Energy costs add up to higher room and board rates

Jackie Valley

4.2 percent rise to be voted on tomorrow; increase is similar to those at other Ohio colleges

Students should expect to pay about a 4.2 percent spike in room and board rates next fall, the result of rising energy costs hitting the university.

David Creamer, senior vice president for administration, said the university will seek approval for the increase at the second Board of Trustees meeting of the semester tomorrow, which is being held in Columbus.

Creamer said the room and board increase does not just reflect traditional inflation, but rather is an outgrowth of energy prices impacting other markets. For example, high gas prices have increased costs for shipping food.

“The energy piece is coming through in two ways,” he said. “It affects utilities and food.”

The proposed room and board increase of about 4.2 percent is down from last year’s 4.7 percent increase and on par with other Ohio universities. Bowling Green University proposed a 5 percent room and board increase, and Miami University proposed a 4.6 percent increase.

Creamer said the university will also propose a price increase for parking passes for the next two academic years.

“We’ve been doing those on a more frequent basis, largely because we’ve been trying to improve the parking,” he said.

Under the proposal to be approved by the board, yearlong parking permits will range from $55 to $180 next year. C-Science parking permits will cost $155 and Summit East and Stadium permits will both cost $135.

Parking permits for next year will cost between $100 and $200 at Miami University, between $72 and $76 at Ohio State, and $70 at Bowling Green.

Creamer said it costs $300 to $350 per year to maintain each parking space at Kent State, which entails construction, summer work and snow removal.

In addition, Creamer said parking fines help reduce the cost of parking permits by providing additional revenue for the building and upkeep of parking spaces on campus.

Other items for approval on the Board of Trustees’ agenda include:

• Summit Street improvements, which Creamer said is aimed at “trying to figure out how to calm some of the congestion on Summit Street.”

• the establishment of a managerial marketing major within the bachelor of business administration degree program

• Small Group housing demolition

Creamer said the proposal concerning the Small Group housing includes funds to install lighting and drainage systems for new intramural soccer and football fields in the open space.

Contact administration reporter Jackie Valley at [email protected].