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Campus Recreation Center proposes student activity fee increase

Campus Recreation Center fully-functioning, Luke Jones, director of Campus Recreation, has requested a $10-per-semester increase in student fees.

Jones presented this proposal at the Tuition and Fees Hearing on Tuesday,  Feb. 21. The increase would raise students’ Campus Recreation fees by $10 for full-time students, and about 84 cents for part-time students. Full-time students are currently paying $60.19 per semester for the student activity fee. The $10 fee increase, according to Jones, would go towards unexpected repairs, maintaining Rec equipment and sustaining current programs such as intramural sports, fitness classes, outdoor recreation and club sports.

“The request for funds is to maintain and replace current equipment, facilities, programs and staff–that is compounded by some of the larger issues related to repairs,” Jones said. “Campus Recreation’s activity fee is currently not enough to sustain what we have and offer (over time), even without the larger damages—we are significantly underfunded.”

Among the repair issues are a leaking roof above the aquatics area, faulty construction in the women’s and men’s showers.

“A roof that should have lasted us 30 years is going to need to be replaced a lot sooner,” Jones said, regarding the roof that has been leaking sporadically over the last few months.

Though the issues currently pose no threat to Rec users, they may pose inconveniences. There will be no need to close the pool—instead, they will continue to place buckets under the leaks to catch the draining water. This may prove difficult, though, because when it rains, the leaks come in a waterfall-like downpour, said Jones.

Additionally, the problems in the men’s and women’s showers are a result of not being installed with an adequate water lining between the drywall and tile. According to Jones, this typically takes about five to six years of slow damage to become exposed and has recently reached that point. They will be fixed over the summer.

In total, the showers are estimated to cost about $30,000, while the acid room repairs totaled nearly $10,000. The numbers are still being crunched for the cost of the roof.

Despite having a $2.2-million budget—75 percent of which is made up of student fees—these damages will have no source of funding if the student fee increase is not accepted. A final decision regarding the fee increase will be made on Wednesday, April 19 and Thursday, April 20.

 “It has to come out of a budget, which, we don’t really have money to set aside for those types of things,” Jones said during the Tuition and Fee Hearing.

Not only will the student fee go to fixing the unexpected repairs that need tending to, but also to the elements that make the Rec enjoyable for students. This includes the basketball courts, climbing wall, weight room and intramural and club sports, said Ben Ohashi, senior marketing major and facility manager for the Rec.

“We need to take care of the Rec’s basic needs, then we can we can do the cool, awesome pizzazz of a new basketball court or upgrading all the equipment,” Ohashi said. “Preventative maintenance, in this case, will allow for newer, more exciting upgrades to come through in the future.”

While the $10 hike in student fees may seem frustrating to some students, both Jones and Ohashi testify to the necessity of such increases. If the increase is not approved, the Rec is projected to eventually start losing the sustainability of their current budget.

“I can guarantee every penny (students) put down that gets shifted to the Rec is going to benefit them. It’s not going to waste,” Ohashi said. “They’re going to put (the money) towards something that is going to positively affect them.”

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