UAF CSO parking revenues down $29,000

UAF Community Service Officers (CSOs) have taken on the full responsibility of parking enforcement as a cost cutting measure, replacing Parking Services personnel, as of July 2014. Previously, CSOs were only responsible for enforcing parking after 6 p.m, including enforcing handicapped parking spot reservations and loading zone violations.

UAF Police Department Chief Keith Mallard, who assumed the position in February 2014, suggested the change when UAF administration requested cost cutting ideas to manage an overwhelming budget deficit. Eliminating the need for extra personnel to enforce parking reduces expenditures.

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Many students have noticed a lack of parking tickets this semester, which has lead to an outbreak of misparking, such as students parking in the gold parking lots so they don’t have to walk as far to class. – Zayn Roohi / Photo Editor

Data supplied by UAF PD indicates that the total number of issued warnings and citations has risen since CSOs have taken over the role of parking enforcement. Since July, CSOs have issued tickets at a higher rate than their predecessors, Parking Services. Despite the increase in tickets, actual revenue has declined as CSOs write more warnings than their predecessors. Warnings do not have fines associated with them.

“[Parking tickets] are not about revenue,” Mallard said. Instead, Mallard tries to ensure that those who have paid for parking can utilize their spaces. It’s more reasonable, in Mallard’s opinion, to issue warnings to college students who may already be strapped for cash.

Mallard says that after the switch from parking services enforced ticketing to CSO enforced tickets, appeals dropped from around 50 a week to 20 a month. Appeals are now discussed by Chief Mallard, Amanda Wall, director of the bursar’s office and Mathew Mund, operations manager for residence life. The reduction in appeal handling has reduced expenses, Mallard says. “If you have just one person reading appeals and clicking a button, approved or denied, that still takes time.”

UAF CSOs now have to enforce parking, which means that their rounds are going to take them more time to complete. This doesn’t result in any extra expenditures, Mallard says, because the time doesn’t need to be paid for; it’s time that was previously unused by the CSOs.

“Under the old mode, we hired folks (students and staff) to do the enforcement,” Associate Vice Chancellor, Financial Services & Business Operations Raajkumar Kurapati said, which came from the budget including salaries and wages, “Personnel Svcs.”

Under the CSO model, the UAF administration reimburses the Police Department for their related cost of enforcement to the tune of about $85, Kurapati said, which comes from the “Contractual Services” budget.

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