Cuesta Collegeâ€™s campus shut down on March 14 to transition from in-person classes to online in order to protect students and slow the spread of COVID-19.Â
Students at California universities and colleges have voiced opinions about whether to receive full or partial tuition paid back in return, but what about parking permits? Colleges such as Sonoma State University have emailed students offering one time refunds of Spring 2020 parking permits.
Currently, Cuesta College Administration is reissuing 50% of parking permit refunds in phases.Â
Cuesta College students who have purchased a Spring 2020 semester parking permit will receive a reimbursement of half the parking permit fee. Permits are priced at $35 so students will see the $17.50 reissued on their student accounts by the end of the semester.
Students that claim an excused withdrawal for all classes will automatically receive the credit on their account, and students receiving CARESÂ funds will have an amount equal to $17.50 in their award.
â€œThose permit fees are part of the larger college budget, and the police department is not able to independently decide to issue refunds,â€ said Bryan Millard, Cuesta College Chief of Police.
Millard noted a handful of students have reached out about getting their money back, but most were concerned with clearing parking citations. Cuesta Collegeâ€™s Police Department obliged, and wiped the slate clean of unpaid parking tickets.
While we â€œshelter at homeâ€ to prevent the spread of COVID-19, no one should worry about an unpaid parking ticket at Cuesta College. So, we are cancelling all of them. To help us find all of them, please email your citation number to CCPD@cuesta.edu. Stay healthy! pic.twitter.com/pja2kwIc11
— Cuesta College PD (@CuestaPolice) March 22, 2020
Cuesta Collegeâ€™s Police Department is working to dismiss all unpaid parking citations. Regardless of how long it has been, they are removing the parking ticket(s) from the students records.Â
â€œSome citations are so late that they have been sent to the Department of Motor Vehicles, as part of the normal process for late parking citations, where those fees are attached to the vehicle’s registration,â€ Millard said. â€œThose citations, unfortunately, cannot be dismissed very easily. Â We have ceased any further late notices, and will not be sending any more late citations to the DMV this semester.Â We want to do everything we can to help.â€
The reasoning behind this is to reduce any face-to-face contact. It is within the authority of Cuesta College PD to manage parking citations. Students typically come to campus for the appeal process or to pay dues.
â€œSome of our own student workers are in that position, and we understand the financial stress that can cause,â€ Millard said. â€œWorrying about parking ticket payments should be the last thing on a student’s mind.â€Â
No payment has been processed towards ticketed citations, so itâ€™s much easier for campus PD to dismiss the appeal process without additional permission from the college. Regarding parking permits, those payments are already processed. Cuesta Collegeâ€™s Police Department would need granted access from the schoolâ€™s administration to issue the refunds.Â
â€œWe are considering many options to help ease the burden on students while also supporting important functions of the college,â€ said Dan Troy, Assistant Superintendent/ Vice President of Administrative Services, prior to the decision of refunding 50% of the cost of a parking permit.
To clear parking citations, Cuesta College students and staff can email CCPD@cuesta.edu and include the citation number(s). Students are directed to contact administrative services for more information.
This story has been revised from the original version, which stated that Cuesta College would not provide refunds for parking permits.