Fines are rising for parking lot violations

BY CRYSTAL GREEN                   


Parking and traffic fines will be increasing by 50% or more on campus.

The ticket for unauthorized parking will increase from $20 to $30.

This includes parking in the staff parking area or in the two-hour parking area for more than the allotted time.

The increase will be even steeper for improperly parking in handicapped spots.

It will go from $60 to $100. 

Campus roadway and parking policies are maintained by the Student Life Office and can be viewed at the Student Life Parking and ID Policies website

The power to fulfill the safety and security functions on campus is dependent on the cooperation and respect of the University community. 

Public Safety Chief Joel Gallihugh confirmed the increasing fines but didn’t have a date for implementation.

“As soon as we finish up the citation books that we currently have, we will switch to the new citation books that have increased fines,” he said.

Also related to campus traffic, department officials have been reminding drivers of the proper procedures to follow when entering campus by vehicle.

There are two lanes at the McNichols entrance. The far-right lane is for all students, faculty and staff.

The left lane is for visitors, officials said.

Both lanes have stop signs, requiring all vehicles come to a complete stop.

Between 8 a.m. and 11 a.m. the campus is filling up.

The majority of students and faculty are using the visitor entrance and counting on the gate guard to lift the gate arm for them, instead of reaching for their campus-access pass.

The problem is that doing so can cause bottlenecks at the entrance and onto Six Mile Road, officials said.  

Another issue, according to public safety officers, is that people have been snapping off the gate arms by coming through the entrance too quickly.

Many drivers believe that because a gate keeper sees your car, he or she is keeping the gate raised for you to fly through. 

In fact, the gate arm is on a timer and it responds to a beam.

The beam can stop the arm from coming down on your car, but cars going in too quickly throw off the timer and the gate arms can come down on your car.

It is imperative that all vehicles stop at the stop sign at the gate entrance, yielding to the car that has the right of way, officials said.

Further, it turns out that many people don’t understand the state law when it comes to the pedestrian crossing signs.

You are supposed to stop at the sign when someone is waiting to cross.

Otherwise, you may proceed with caution, at the posted speed limit of 15. 

Anyone observed disregarding the stop sign at the entrance, exceeding the speed limit on campus or parking in unauthorized areas, is subject to be issued a university citation for the violation.

Those citations, if unpaid, can prevent you from registering for classes or receiving a diploma.