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Parking and Traffic Appeals Panel

This is the annual report to the Faculty Council on the activity of the Standing Committee C-8, Parking and Traffic Appeals Panel during the 2004-05 academic year.

The committee to date has received and decided 127 cases of those appealing parking regulation violations committed on campus. An appellant whose citation is upheld on appeal by Parking and Transportation Services (PTS) may make a second and final appeal through PTS to this standing committee. The panel consists of 20 faculty members, 10 staff members, and 10 students.

Of the 127 cases, the panel upheld 103 cases, dismissed 20 cases, and reduced the fine on four cases.

The committee convened on September 7, 2004, with Professor Cynthia Buckley serving as committee convener. The committee re-elected as chair Dominic Lasorsa and elected as vice chair Martin Poenie. The committee decided to adopt the same procedures as used the previous year, which included the allowance for a second appeal to a sub-panel of committee members, with a third appeal to the full committee. The committee chair votes only in the case of a tie.

On October 7, the committee met with PTS officers, who provided members with University regulations and answered questions about the committee’s relationship with PTS. PTS officers attending were Director Robert Harkins, Assistant Director (Garages) Bobby Stone, Surface Parking Manager Jane Wilcox, and Appeals Officer Margaret Rogers.

The chair subsequently assigned committee members to six sub-panels to review first and second appeals. Each sub-panel consisted of a mixture of faculty, staff and student members, as equally divided as possible. In addition, experienced panel members returning from the previous year’s committee were distributed across the sub-panels as equally as possible. Each sub-panel consisted of six or seven members.

Sub-panels received from six to ten cases to review at a time. They generally were given two weeks to review cases and to make decisions.

The committee this year used a secure Web site to enable the transmission and coordination of cases among panel members. Initiated two years ago by then Chair Robert Koons and made fully operational last year, this new system has resulted in increased participation by panel members and quicker turnaround of cases.

The committee has worked with PTS officers and with Jeff Reed of Instructional Technology Services to help improve the committee’s computer system. Mr. Reed was instrumental in getting the system up and running, and he has continued to improve the system to make it more user friendly. We hope to see added a capability for a panelist to see online the disposition of decided cases. Currently, the chair must provide such information. Timely information about how the panel ultimately voted on a case may be diagnostic, especially for new panelists. If a way to provide feedback on resolved cases could be added to the current system, the information could reach panelists in a more timely fashion.

Last year, the committee was able to dispose of all cases on the docket, without deferring any cases for the next academic year. This year, the committee hopes to do the same. In large part, this is believed to be possible because of the efficiency and convenience of the new computer system.

Dominic L. Lasorsa, chair