The Daily Tar Heel

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Sunday January 29th

BOT Passes Increase Of Fees for Students

Although the $21.10 increase for undergraduate students and the $19 increase for graduate students were calculated primarily to cover inflationary costs, some trustees expressed support for higher increases in the future.

Trustee David Pardue said UNC-CH undergraduate students should be expected to shoulder a greater increase in fees than the 2.8 percent that passed Thursday because the Board of Governors has set a cap for increases at 5 percent. "I don't see any reason to see fees raised at levels such as 2.8 percent," Pardue said.

In a comparison of student fees paid at the 16 UNC-system campuses, UNC-CH ranked 15 out of 16 in the amount of student fees paid by undergraduate students.

Chancellor James Moeser said the ranking indicated a need to consider more dramatic increases in the future. "Looking at the numbers, I'm shocked," he said. "I don't think we're 15 out of 16 in terms of services provided."

Pardue and other trustees specifically cited the low amount UNC-CH students pay in athletic funds. Of the $850.32 paid in student fees by UNC-CH undergraduate students for the 2000-01 year, only $85 -- or 10 percent of the total bill -- were allocated to athletic funds.

But schools such as UNC-Charlotte and UNC-Asheville allocate 29.9 and 34 percent, respectively, for athletic funding. "The athletic fees are really insane," said Trustee Bill Jordan, who agreed that the totals paid by UNC-CH students are not representative of the quality of services.

Pardue said he was inclined to return the requests to the finance committee for reconsideration because the amount proposed was so low, but a vote was needed from the BOT on Wednesday.

The BOT passed the budget requests with little more discussion, but Pardue asked that the student fee increase requests be reviewed earlier next year so the BOT can make changes. "I don't think we're being fiscally responsible," Purdue said.

Student Body President Brad Matthews, the only student representative on the board, said boosts in student fees are considered carefully by the BOT. "We're very proud of the fact we've been able to keep (student fees) so low," he said. "But there are going to be times we need to keep up the level of service."

Matthews also presented his proposal for fare-free busing for the University community, one which was received with support by the BOT.

Student Congress voted Tuesday to place a referendum on the Feb. 13 student elections ballot asking students to approve a $8.49 increase in fall and spring semester fees to fund the free transportation, to be provided by Chapel Hill Transit.

The BOT also listened to presentations by several committee chairmen and University representatives, such as Bruce Runberg, associate vice chancellor for facilities services.

Runberg updated the board on the status of Capital Improvement Projects at UNC, including four projects to be funded by money from the $3.1 billion bond referendum passed in November.

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