Parking Fee Grievance

Parking TicketDear SSU APA Constituency:

On September 26, we heard from the University regarding the status of the Parking Fee Grievance filed last month.

If you were not aware, Salem State is 1 of only 2 Massachusetts State Universities who charge a fee for APA members to park.  The other institution is the Massachusetts College of Art in Boston.  Per our contract, a parking fee may not be charged.  However, the contract does allow for local negotiations regarding such fees on an “as needed” basis.  This is to be conducted through a Parking Committee.  The current fee was established in the 1980’s and has carried through all subsequent contracts without going to a Parking Committee with APA representation.

The agreement: We have agreed that, given the timing of the grievance and where we are in the semester, it is not practical to eliminate the fee FOR THIS YEAR.  To ensure we do not increase the problem of students parking in staff-designated spots, a parking sticker/decal/tag will still be needed.  So, for this year, if you have not already done so, please purchase your parking tag.  Beginning next academic year (2019/2020), this fee will be eliminated.  We will meet with the University to discuss the best way to distribute parking “tags” before they are needed again.

If you received a ticket, we have also made the request that those tickets be nullified.  We are awaiting that decision and feel that issuing tickets while the grievance was pending also violated our contract.  If you received a ticket WHILE PARKED IN A SPOT THAT WOULD HAVE OTHERWISE BEEN “LEGAL” for an APA member, please let Mike Pelletier know.

We recognize this was a small fee.  The size of the fee wasn’t at issue and ultimately everyone involved realized that.  We are working to restore respect for our membership and our contract.  When we look the other way when even the smallest infringement against our contract occurs, we all begin to lose faith in it.

Brian Helman
Appointed Grievance officer