Southeast Missouri State University
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Ann K. Hayes (573) 651-2552
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

REGENTS APPROVE HOUSING RATES, RESIDENCE LIFE BUDGET FOR 2003-2004

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., April 16, 2003 - The Southeast Missouri State University Board of Regents today approved new room and board rates effective with the fall 2003 semester and approved a $13.8 million Residence Life budget for fiscal 2004.

Dr. Dennis Holt, vice president for administration and enrollment management, said Southeast can accommodate 2,729 students in Southeast's residence halls next year.

Under the approved plan, rates will increase 4 percent in Southeast residence halls for next academic year. No increase is planned in the surcharge for private rooms.

"Rate increases are primarily dedicated to increases in operations and personnel costs and to a revised capital improvements plan based on a plan approved by the Board of Regents in February 2002," Holt said.

The capital improvements plan will allow Residence Life to make required renovations, as well as student-desired renovations, Holt said. Among those improvements will be refurbishment of the Towers Complex and Dearmont Hall lounges, replacement of the roof on Towers West, repairs to the Towers South and East shower areas, and replacement of mattresses, beds and chairs in Dearmont.

Based on the new rates, annual residence hall fees will be $2,791 for Dearmont (which is not air conditioned); $3,044 for Cheney; $3,173 for Towers South and East; $3,203 for Dearmont Plus (which features air conditioning) and Myers; $3,732 for Group Housing; $3,896 for triple rooms in Towers North and West; $4,039 for double rooms in Towers North and West; and $4,463 for rooms in New Hall.

In other action, the Regents also approved a 3 percent increase in board rates, which incorporate a 2.5 percent increase in Chartwells' projected operating costs. The remaining .5 percent provides for enhancement of food services requested by students, including expanded hours of services and a more flexible meal plan. Based on the new rates, the average meal plan will cost students $1,794 annually.

"With the construction of Skylight Terrace and New Hall, student usage of the University Center has significantly increased," Holt said. "Based on discussion with students and Chartwells staff, the new plan will add evening hours at Skylight Terrace as well as 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. service on Saturdays."

In addition, greater flexibility will be provided by replacing bonus meals with "flex dollars" of comparable value to students, but higher cost to Chartwells. This increased opportunity for "flex dollars" and the elimination of bonus meals was implemented in response to student requests, Holt said.

Under the new standard rate schedule, the most popular plan - 15 meals per week plus $140 in points - will cost students $1,852 annually. The 19-meal plan with no flex dollars is $1,945. The 19-meal plan with $116 flex is $1,962. The unlimited plan with no flex dollars is $2,062. The 10-meal plan with $160 flex is $1,767. The five-meal plan plus $270 flex is $1,443.

The flex dollars reflected in the board rates are cash stored electronically on students' ID cards as part of their meal plan. They can be used at any campus dining location to buy additional meals, food items, snacks or beverages.

With the approved increases, the average combined room and board rates (based on rooms in Towers South/East and a 15-meal plan plus $140 flex) will cost $5,025, which is a 3.6 percent increase from last year.

In other action, the Board approved a 3.5 percent increase in rental rates for non-traditional student housing on Washington Street. The Washington Street Apartments consist of 19 units and vary in number of bedrooms, size of rooms and amenities. The increase was necessitated by inflationary and ongoing facility maintenance needs. Monthly rates for the 2003-2004 academic year range from $298.06 for a one-bedroom efficiency at 505 Washington Street to $395.50 for a two-bedroom apartment with a balcony at 401 Washington Street.

In May 2001, Brailsford & Dunlavey reported that Washington Street apartment rental rates were seven percent lower for one-bedroom apartments and 15 percent lower for two-bedroom apartments than rental rates for comparable apartments in the community.

"Rates were raised three percent in fiscal 2003," Holt said. "With an increase of 3.5 percent for fiscal 2004, the Washington Street Apartments still represent a good value for non-traditional students."

 

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