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eParking launches registration site, but at a cost

Drivers face $5 increase in campus parking registration fees

Starting this semester, on-campus parking services will come with a new price tag.

Tycho McManus/Assistant Photo Editor Parking permits are currently available for sale and pick-up in the Events Center. Parking Services announced it was raising yearly permit prices by $5, causing some to question the increase.

On Aug. 25, Parking Services launched a new website allowing students who previously had parking permits to re-register for their annual parking pass. However, students also face a five dollar price increase to $140.55 in eParking and vehicle registration fees.

According to Susan Crane, the director of Parking Services at Binghamton University, prices were raised from the previous academic year to cover overhead costs that were associated with increases in service contracts and supplies.

“We are always looking for ways to make parking more convenient and easier for the campus,” Crane wrote in an email.

Students must register a vehicle under their name with Parking Services. After registering, students receive a hang-tag, which they are required to display in their car at all times while parked on campus.

The tags can be transferred from one car to another, unlike the previously used decals. The hang-tags have bar codes that make vehicle processing quicker for parking services by reducing time spent typing up information about a vehicle.

Andrew Koven, a junior majoring in economics, said that despite the recent upgrades, the cost of parking was an unfair burden for students that rely on their vehicles to commute to class.

“The high price as it stands is taking advantage of the students’ need to park their car on campus,” Koven said. “The fact that they need to pay thousands of dollars for tuition along with parking costs is discouraging.”

Other students found the price reasonable, but were unhappy with the results.

“The five dollars isn’t a big increase, but I would question why,” said Austin Blumenfeld, a senior majoring in political science. “If these ‘overhead costs’ are going to the website, that’s ridiculous, because the parking website has been down for the past week.”

Despite the cost and problems, Crane said that approximately 7,000 student hang-tags were sold, with parking space still available.

Students like Josh Woda, a junior double-majoring in environmental science and geology, said the open spots are often inconveniently located.

“There’s sufficient parking, but not in the spots that they should be in,” Woda said. “You never get a spot where you actually want it.”

Catherine Champney, a senior double-majoring in English and political science, said that cost increase was unfair if the University could not provide more convenient parking.

“I lived in Dickinson and constantly had to park elsewhere because there was no space left, she said. “Then I got ticketed even though they knew there was no place to go where I needed to park. They just added all these new dorms, but no more parking to deal with more students.”