On Friday, the EKU Parking Appeals Committee met to discuss proposal bylaws for the parking appeals process for the first time in approximately a year. The new committee met in Whitlock 549 from 1-2:15 p.m.
Those present included seven individuals. Bryan Makinen, executive director of Public Safety and Risk Management was present as a sounding board for the committee. Courtney Collins, director of Parking and Transportation services and Mitzi Witt, coordinator of Parking and Transportation services served as the clerks in order to guide the voting committee.
Six representatives make up the voting committee, comprised of two faculty members, two staff members and two students. Those present were Julie George, faculty member of the library; Nathan Jasinski, faculty member of the music department; Heather Foster, Staff Council-appointed representative and Anna Nelson, SGA Student Court justice. One staff member and one student were not present, but only three voters are required to constitute a quorum, according to a recent Progress story on the committee.
The meeting started with Makinen thanking everyone who decided to be a part of the process. Makinen described how important public safety was to everyone at the university, and how the parking appeals committee was a part of keeping the university safe.
“If someone parks in a fire lane, they are endangering everyone,” Makinen said.
Makinen also brought up the accessibility of parking areas. Makinen said that if one is parked in a space without the correct permits, they are keeping those in need away from it.
Articles one through five from the bylaw proposal were read, reviewed and voted on by the committee. It was discussed how some words should be changed to be more specific.
Other concerns, such as to whether or not parking citations were a way for the university to make money with correlation to accidental mistakes like forgetting a parking pass, were brought up by Jasinski.
“Parking doesn’t make budgets based on citations,” Makinen said. “It’s about fairness and consistency.”
Makinen said that although citations are a concern for those who make mistakes, everyone needs to be treated the same when it comes to parking citations because of the “domino effect” that can take place, affecting the whole parking system.
Down the road, license plate recognition will be put into place, committee members said, so they decided to hear from others about things such as forgetting their parking pass while parking in the correct zone until the new system takes place.
Foster voiced one last concern at the end of the meeting about how the committee will be run in the summer.
“If we’re trying to be a committee that is representative of the majority of the campus, faculty, staff and students, requirement just being three, and it’s just two staff members and a faculty member, students aren’t included at all,” Foster said.
Collins said that although this is the ideal, some students tend not to show up for committee meetings because of other responsibilities. The importance of equal representation did not go unnoticed by others in the committee. Makinen said that if others cannot show up, they will be fair and consistent to all.
The revised bylaws will be sent to each committee member for review, then rewritten and finalized. The next meeting will be on Feb. 1 at 1 p.m., at either the same location or at the library. Collins said they will continue to try to meet every other week, or as needed. In the fall, the elect chair and vice chair will be voted in again.