Thank you for all of your questions and comments about our decision to ask parking companies to submit bids to lease our parking operations. This week we released a Request for Proposals and expect to get bids back at the end of May.
During this process I thought it would be a good idea to open a space to answer the questions we hear in meetings and emails. I’ll also keep you updated on the latest. If you’d like to send me your questions or thoughts, just drop me a note at: PAG@busfin.osu.edu.
I’d like to start by clarifying two key points.
First, Transportation & Parking employees are dedicated members of my team, and I value the hard work they do every day. If they want to stay on at Ohio State, we will help them find jobs within the university that offer similar pay and work. If we do move forward with this lease and our workers decide they would rather pursue a position with the new parking company – they have that option open as well. They can decide what works best for them.
Second, I want to answer one of your biggest questions – will you have to pay more for parking if a new firm takes over?
As costs go up each year, we’ve routinely had to raise parking rates to maintain our lots and garages. The same will hold true if another firm takes over. But we’ve capped annual parking rate increases so there will be no surprises.
In fact, we required all bidders to submit proposals with a range of annual increases—5.5 percent, 6.5 percent, and 7.5 percent—for the first ten years of the contract. That’s no more than rates have gone up historically over the past few years.
The cap for the remaining years would follow the Consumer Price Index, which will guarantee a fixed increase tied to national and regional inflation trends.
I hope this clears up a few of the main points. For anyone who might not be familiar with how we got to where we are today, we’ve also developed a quick overview of the proposal that includes what the potential income could support, the process and some background on leasing. It’s also available here. The bids are due at the end of May and after they come in, we will be updating the Parking Advisory Group, Senate Fiscal, Senate Steering, USAC, faculty, staff and student leaders. Dates and times for currently scheduled meetings are: 3:30 p.m for Faculty Council on May 31; 1:30 p.m. for Senate Fiscal Committee on June 5; 4 p.m. for the Parking Advisory Group on June 5; and 3:30 p.m. for the Senate Steering Committee on June 6.
I'll be updating this space regularly, so feel free to send questions and thoughts to PAG@busfin.osu.edu.