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CONTACT: Kathleen Thames
(337) 482-6397 kat@louisiana.edu
Sept. 27, 2012
Students to Weigh In on Master Plan Referendum
UL Lafayette students will vote Oct. 8 and Oct. 9 on a referendum to support implementation of the university master plan through a self-assessed student fee.

If they approve the measure, each student will contribute $7.50 per credit hour, for up to 15 credit hours – a maximum total of $112.50 per semester and session. The fee would be collected beginning with the Spring 2013 semester.

The Student Government Association proposed the referendum.

UL Lafayette engaged an alumnus, Steve Oubre of Architects Southwest, to create a comprehensive, 10-year plan for campus development. Last fall, he led a series of public planning sessions to get input from students, faculty and staff, as well as community members. Oubre also collaborated with transportation experts, including traffic engineers, parking consultants and specialists in pedestrian and bicycle traffic.

“The No. 1 issue students are concerned with is transportation to and from campus,” Oubre said. The plan addresses immediate needs, such as wider sidewalks and the creation of a 24-hour study facility. It also looks at larger issues of transportation, parking, housing and overall land use. Oubre said the goal is to create “a campus village,” where people live, work, shop and socialize at buildings within walking distance.

In an open letter published in The Vermilion, UL Lafayette's student newspaper, SGA President Ashley Mudd voiced support for the referendum. She noted that the self-assessed funds would be restricted to projects outlined in the master plan.

“I have younger siblings currently attending UL Lafayette. ... I love the idea that I have the opportunity to implement a fee that will create a better university and campus for them,” she wrote.

UL Lafayette students have a history of planning and providing financial support for future students. Through self-assessed fees, students are paying for the $40 million renovation of the Student Union, which is now under way.

Students also paid for recreational facilities at Bourgeois Hall: a $2.4 million aquatic center added in 2002 and a $3 million fitness center that was completed this year.

Document last revised Thursday, September 27, 2012 9:31 PM

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