Student and faculty complaints are constant when it comes to parking on the Yuba College campus. Either the parking decals cost too much, there isn’t enough good parking, or it’s too difficult to purchase a one-day pass. The perception is always gloomy.
The reality is actually a bit brighter. Yuba College parking has improved considerably in the past two years. The entire west parking lot had a $1 million makeover this year, and call boxes were installed throughout the campus. Only a few years ago every student had to pay full price for a parking decal for the entire semester, no matter how often they came to the college. No day passes were available at all.
Today, though inconvenient to obtain, day passes are at least an option. Also, students can buy the day passes in bulk, so those who know they will be returning need inconvenience themselves only once a semester.
But what about those who hadn’t planned on stopping by the campus for a day? The convenience of a self-serving parking meter is obvious to those who discuss the option and available at most other community colleges throughout the state.
The fact of the matter is that everyone wants them, especially the Chief of Police, Christopher Wilkinson. So why doesn’t the Yuba Community College District cough up the funds needed to purchase the meters for all its campuses?
Answer: the district apparently does not have the money to take on the endeavor. One of the machines, according to Wilkinson, costs a minimum $8,000. Then labor and repair costs must be factored in.
“I’m all for it. I really am,” said Wilkinson. “I think it’s long over due.”
Many wonder where all the money goes when parking decals and passes are purchased and tickets are paid. In the long run, it is supposed to go back to the students. Each campus in the district has its own account where payments go toward improvements on the parking lots, such as purchasing self-serving parking meters, and throughout the campus.
The Chief of Police plans on submitting a proposal soon to his upper management to purchase 1 to 8 of the self-serving parking meters.
Until then, for those who are visitors on the campus, the college provides free courtesy parking passes, which must be obtained at the campus police office. When prospective students come to take their placement tests or sporting events are held on campus and the police department is informed, ticketing is suspended for that time.
Yet many students have had one of those days when they forget their decals and come back to their cars at the end of the day to find a ticket. Fortunately, the campus police department is very understanding and forgiving of such situations. The department keeps a list of everyone who has purchased decals, and if you follow the appeal process correctly, you won’t have to pay for that ticket.
The Chief of Police hopes that the bond measure, Proposition 39 will pass in November so that the district will receive much needed funding to improve the Yuba, Woodland, and Clear Lake campuses. Specifically for Yuba College, improvements can be made to the east side parking lot and all the surface streets, in addition to any renovations and construction of buildings.
“We’re trying,” explained Wilkinson. “The management means well. The staff means well. Everybody here really has their heart into it.”