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The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

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The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

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SBCC student government discusses transportation fees


The Associated Student Senate meeting was abuzz with debate and discussion regarding proposals to increase the transportation and parking fee cap for the second week in a row today.

According to President Colette Brown, the fee for bus passes and parking permits are capped under a specific amount. It has been proposed that if these fees were separated, the price restrictions for each could increase.

Right now City College and Metropolitan Transit District can charge up to $70 for combined transportation fees. If these were separated it could be a $50 cap for each, or a $100 combined cap.

The decision that the senate makes will not lead to an automatic increase in transportation fees, the vote will only make it possible for the transit district to propose higher rates.

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“The entire student body has to approve any change in the transportation fee in the contract with MTD. So that then it can’t just be an arbitrary thing,” said Senate Advisor Allison Canning.

Concerns about raising these transportation fee caps by such a large amount and how frequently new prices are proposed were voiced at the last two meetings.

Last week however, Grace Katzenson, vice president of senate affairs, pointed out in response that while they may propose and pass a new $50 cap, the prices would go up gradually.

Currently, students have to pay a $30 fee for access to buses which is significantly cheaper than the $50 standard monthly passes.

“The fact that right now they give us a service for $30 when they could be giving it to us for $150 absolutely blows my mind,” Brown said. “I think that as we look at this, with the service that they are providing us, they deserve to be getting more than $30 from every student on this campus because so many of us use the bus and take advantage of this opportunity.”

There are plenty of students that do not frequently ride the buses and Katzenson mentioned that an increased price for parking permits could decrease overcrowding in City College’s parking lots.

While bus pass cost would also be increasing, the price that City College students are given to be able to ride the buses at any point is still dramatically less when compared to the normal prices offered to non-students.

“I think that we are giving MTD a lot, but MTD is also giving us a lot and it’s our time to show that we support them,” Brown said. “I understand that not every student uses it, but every student is allowed to use it and every student should, in my opinion be using the bus rather than driving their own cars.”

The senate will continue to take up the discussion item in the weeks to follow.

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