A new ticketing system that has recently been put into place at RMC has allowed for parking on campus to be monitored much more than in previous years. The new system, created by an RMC student in the computer science program, has created mixed feelings in the RMC community.
For many people on campus, a rigorous ticketing and parking enforcement system is important because it ensures that people who have the proper permit have access to their lot. “Having a ticketing system is necessary because parking can become so limited, especially during business hours,” said Theo Manazir, RMC Campus Safety Coordinator. “People living in Widenhouse/Anderson frequently have issues being unable to find parking in their own lot, so it is not fair to them to have someone with a Rimview or Tech permit taking up space there.” Furthermore, Manazir said that making sure that the “No Parking” zones remain clear ensures that the travel lanes are wide enough to maintain a safe environment for driving, as well as to ensure space for emergency vehicles.
However, despite its benefits, the new ticketing system has also created some tension within the student body. Some students, like Melinda Provencher (‘16), feel that receiving a parking ticket is unjustified. “It can be difficult to find parking on campus to start with,” said Provencher, “[and then] when I come out and find that I have a ticket for parking in the one place that was open, it becomes very frustrating.”
Ideally, because RMC is a small college with approximately 1,000 students attending any given year, having enough parking spaces available should not be a problem. But some students have a very different opinion. “When I have the choice between parking super far from my class and being late, or parking where I can find a spot and risk a ticket,” said Luke Schreiner (‘17), “I would risk that ticket any day. My classes come first.” Comments like this from students highlight the specific dilemma that RMC faces.
Currently, there are three different levels of ticket amounts that a student can receive for a parking infraction. The first, parking in an area without a proper permit, is a $15 fine; parking in a “No Parking” zone is $50; and parking in a handicap space would cost a student $100. According to Manazir, tickets are written by work-study students who patrol the lots during business hours, and the exact schedule varies day-to-day depending on the students’ class schedules. Money collected from student parking tickets goes into the Campus Safety budget where, said Manazir, “it helps to fund a number of different services, ranging from tasks such as re-striping the parking lines, monitoring the lots, and also funding the equipment for the parking enforcement itself (vests, printers, etc).”
The parking lots that are next to the residence halls (Anderson/Widenhouse, and Rimview/Jorgenson) are designated for the students who live in those places, and the parking lot behind Prescott Hall is designated for staff and faculty. The parking lots behind the Fortin Education Center and beside Tech Hall are specifically designated for off-campus students and faculty. The parking system that is currently set up aims to serve all of the people that not only teach and go to RMC, but also those visiting campus.
Parking passes can be found in the Dean of Students Office in the Bair Family Student Center. Parking tickets can be paid there as well.