Committee approves student fee increases

The approved increases will go before USF President Judy Genshaft on Nov. 17 for review. ORACLE FILE PHOTO/ADAM MATHIEU

The Local Fee Committee voted Friday to increase student fees by $1.82 per credit hour, the maximum allowable increase.

Beginning next academic year, a student taking a 15-credit-hour course load can expect to pay roughly $195 per semester for the Activity and Service fee, $227 per semester for the Athletic fee and $168 per semester for the Health fee.

The proposed increase to the Athletic fee to pay for student-athlete scholarship differentials was approved for 75 percent of what was originally asked for at $450,000 – 46 cents per credit hour. 

In total, the Athletic fee was raised by 72 cents per credit hour. 

The proposed increase in the student Health fee was approved in full at 63 cents per credit hour or $609,132 in total additional funding. 

The increased revenue will go toward salary increases for departments under USF Wellness, including the hiring of a new Victim Advocate for the Center for Victim Advocacy and Violence Prevention.

The Activity and Service fee was also approved in full at an increase of 47 cents per credit hour – $451,932 overall.  

The increase will fund the replacement of gym equipment in the Campus Recreation Center, a new gym on the USF Health portion of campus and will cover state-mandated salary increases for departments such as the Center for Student Involvement and the Center for Leadership and Civic Engagement.

Overall, the only major cutbacks were to the student body initiatives proposed under the Athletic fee increase. USF Athletics had originally requested $150,000 for student initiatives, but their request was only approved at 5 cents per credit hour or $44,500 total.

The proposed student initiatives included free parking at football games and other school spirit events such as Marshall Mayhem.

SG President Jean Cocco said he plans to meet with administrators in USF Athletics to try and convince them to still use the additional funding for free parking.

“I’m going to try and make sure they use the $44,000 toward the free parking, because that’s really the most important one,” Cocco said. “That’s the one that’s going to get students to the games.”

The $451,932 in proposed increases to the Activity and Service fee will still need to be approved by the SG Senate A&S Recommendation Committee. 

The approved increases will go before USF President Judy Genshaft on Nov. 17 for review.