Telling The Real Stories

Strict parking policies give no regard to volunteers on campus

in Editorial/Opinion by

What is one of the top complaints among SCSU students? Parking tickets. It seems that public safety officers are always a few feet away, ready to pounce with parking tickets.

It’s a complaint that I hear about daily from fellow students. I know some people in the SCSU community would rather not hear another student whine about getting parking tickets, but I think I can provide a unique perspective to this irritating experience.

I also deemed it important to write about the subject, because of recent rumblings I’ve heard from people speculating that Public Safety will require that people will have to have a parking permit to park on campus 24/7.

I’m a radio broadcasting major, and I work for the college radio station, KVSC. Apologies for tooting my own horn, but I spend a lot of my time there either deejaying or performing my duties as a paid staff director. I live in an off campus apartment just because it makes it more convenient to work at KVSC in the winter and summer breaks. I get paid by St. Cloud State University to perform my duties at KVSC, and I work there just for the extracurricular and valuable experience alone, but that doesn’t keep those lovely orange envelopes from appearing on my windshield.

I recall getting a parking ticket for parking in D-Lot, which is located behind Lawrence Hall and right beside KVSC in Stewart Hall, during winter break last year. Winter freaking break, when there is next to no one on campus, and I get a parking ticket.

My concerns of getting parking tickets increased this past summer. I was working at KVSC, and commuting back and forth between St. Cloud and my internship in St. Louis Park. I was most worried about getting parking tickets on Mondays when I would drive straight back to St. Cloud from my internship just in time for the weekly staff meeting, and I would park in one of the student lots.

I will admit, the signs for the student lots say that the rules for parking are enforced year round, but for a student lot, that is ridiculous. Every week that I would park in B-Lot, there was one or maybe two cars also parked there.

Sure there are summer classes, but you don’t see the campus swarmed with cars in the summer. It wasn’t until the end of the summer that I received a parking ticket. The guy who works in the business office in the Administrative Building said I got lucky. I for one would like to give Public Safety a special gift on their doorstep. Now there’s a chance these parking rules may be enforced 24/7?

What about the volunteer deejays at KVSC, members of the community who have volunteered their time for years, and for some, decades, to a college station where the college parking system can hinder them in doing what they love? Should they be forced to try to find parking blocks away while hosting night shifts, or pay the exorbitant hourly fees for the student parking ramp?

It’s repeatedly said by some that Public Safety allegedly requires its officers to reach a quota of parking tickets given to pay for expenses like repaving parking lots. But, isn’t there another way to find funding for those expenses? Did Atwood and other buildings need new furniture last year? The new furniture isn’t comfortable anyways. The University Program Board could even cut some if its expenses, like stuffing huskies or “mocktails.” I’m a transfer student, and I’ve never seen activities as inane for college students in my life as waiting in a 30-person line for a mixed soda and juice drink and making a stuffed animals.

I hope these rumblings of 24/7 parking permit enforcement are just rumors and nothing more, otherwise I fear the impact it will have on our volunteers at KVSC and others with as worthy causes for parking on campus at SCSU. If a stricter enforcement ensues, I better go shop for galoshes.

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