So, you got a parking ticket. Now where is your $15?
Salt Lake Community College Parking Services recently increased the standard parking fine from $10 to $15. This sparked curiosity among students about how these funds are used once collected.
In a statement, Shane Crabtree, director of Public Safety at SLCC, says the money collected from parking permits and fees is used in a variety of ways to maintain the campus parking lots.
“We keep the lighting up, use if [needed] for snow removal, crack seal every year, [and] paint every single year,” Crabtree says. “We have a five-year plan for redoing all of our lots with a two-inch overlay. That maintains the lots of the parking lot to where if we lost a lot it wouldn’t cost $5 million. It’s preventative maintenance, and we stay way up on top of it.”
Crabtree explains that funds are also used for other campus services and benefits.
“Some of the funds we generate are used for subsidy for the UTA bus rides and the shuttle that we’ve been using,” Crabtree says. “We also pay for most of our campus safety guys who are not law enforcement to work nights, to provide escorts to students, and be present on campus from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.”
Safety personnel are posted on campus from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. each night of the week. These individuals can offer services such as walking people to and from parking lots, opening vehicle doors for people who have locked their keys inside, or jumpstarting a vehicle. The funds to pay these individuals for their standby service comes from the revenue generated from parking fines.
Crabtree adds the funds collected from the selling of parking permits help to maintain much of his staff’s salary.
“It covers all of the cashiers, parking enforcers, and manager pay. It also covers most preventative maintenance,” Crabtree says. “The fees we collect from citations helps with security and campus safety.”
When it comes to governing parking lots, SLCC is completely independent, meaning no funds are provided from the State, but the school is solely responsible for maintaining its own program.
In a detailed breakdown of costs for SLCC to maintain its parking lots, the following was compiled:
- Labor for parking enforcer’s staff: $123,299
- Equipment, including vehicle fuel & repairs: $6,568
- Mailing for collection of unpaid citations: $5,272
- Campus safety and UHP contract portion: $130,000
The total fees collected by Parking Services for violations in 2017 totaled $255,088. With expenditures totaling $265,139, the department experienced a $10,000 loss. The shortfall prompted the fine increase from $10 to $15 for this upcoming school year.
Crabtree says these policies are all for ensuring safety of faculty, staff and students.
According to the Budgeting Department, SLCC ranks second across all the post-secondary education schools in Utah for lowest cost of parking permits.