RHA proposes laundry in tuition

Stephanie Sansoucy

University Housing is revisiting the proposal of a laundry bill to be implemented starting the fall of 2015 that will create a laundry fee in housing cost.

The bill includes a $35 fee added to the university housing cost each semester for Appalachian State University residents to receive unlimited laundry.

Tom Kane, director of housing and residence life, introduced the idea for Appalachian after hearing other colleges were incorporating it in their housing fee.

Appalachian’s contract with Mac-Gray commercial laundry systems will expire May 2015 and a renegotiation will begin at the start of fall 2014, Kane said.

“[The process] should go smoothly because we know it’s something we want to do, and it’s something we’re planning ahead for,” Kane said.

Kane said the idea was brought to the Residence Hall Association three years ago and a miscommunication was created among the student body. Many students first thought that this laundry bill would be included in tuition rather than university housing fees.

Having clarified that only students who live on campus will be charged, RHA will begin surveying on-campus students again this fall for their feedback concerning the proposed laundry bill. They will then compile their results in a report that will be given to Kane, which he will present to the board of directors, said Anna McNamara, senior psychology major and RHA president.

There was a strong positive response from students last time the bill was introduced and after the miscommunication was cleared, Kane said.

“Our goal as a department is to give students a voice to make changes in our halls that will benefit on-campus students,” said Brandon Nelson, university housing coordinator. “RHA and the 19 hall councils are that voice.”

The possibility of students abusing the free laundry and causing the university’s water and laundry bill to increase has been looked into. After asking other colleges who already have the pay-up-front laundry added to their housing fee and have yet to experience a problem, the verdict stands that it would be too inconvenient for students to try to deliberately misuse it, Kane said.

“I think it would be a lot more convenient for our on-campus residents to just know that it is taken care of and not have to get quarters [to pay for laundry],” McNamara said.

Story: MICHELLE PIERCE, News Reporter