After having issued some partial refunds for parking passes on a case-by-case basis, UCF Parking and Transportation Services has stopped doing so, UCF spokeswoman Heather Smith told NSM Today.
"Beginning today, it's my understanding that there will be no partial refunds, even though a few have already been given on a case-by-case basis," Smith wrote in an email on March 27.
Parking Services confirmed in an email that they were offering some refunds just hours before this decision was made.
"We are offering refunds on a case by case basis," Parking Services wrote in the email.
Parking Services has declined to comment further on why they stopped issuing partial refunds or why they started issuing refunds in the first place, despite given multiple opportunities by NSM Today to do so.
Jessica Thurber, sophomore radio/television media management and operations major, said that she emailed Parking Services on Friday requesting a partial refund after she saw a post on Reddit.
In the post, the user wrote that they were granted a partial refund from Parking Services after emailing them. This was posted on March 26, a day before Parking Services confirmed that they stopped issuing refunds.
"I sent a request because I was angry that I couldn't use my parking pass for the next five months," Thurber said.
Thurber received a response from Parking Services rejecting her request saying that at this time "UCF and most other schools in the State University System are not issuing refunds or partial refunds for parking permits."
"I think it's really strange and unfair that they would offer a refund to some students but not to others," Thurber said.
Smith said that 8,357 student permits were sold this semester, which include 7,421 D permits, 899 resident permits and 37 motorcycle permits. These student permits totaled to a cost of $428,503.08 for the semester, Smith said.
Parking Services was not able to provide information for parking permit purchases from fall 2019, Smith said.
Garages A, B, C, D, H and I offer a total of 8,490 parking spots, according to the Parking Services' website. The Libra garage has 1,007 parking spots.
The D parking permits are for commuting students. One-semester decals and hand tags for D permits cost $47.94 and $50.35, respectively, according to Parking Services' website. Multi-semester decals and hand tags for D permits cost a total of $95.88 and $100.68, respectively.
On-campus residents pay more money. One-semester decals and hand tags cost $71.92 and $75.51, respectively. Multi-semester decals and hand tags cost $143.82 and $151.02, respectively.
Motorcycle decals for one semester cost a total of $25.51 and the multi-semester decals cost a total of $49.99.
Thurber said that every student should receive a partial refund and that it would be best if the refunds were automatically transferred to students’ accounts. She said that these refunds should be offered again.
"If even one refund was granted, all refunds should be granted whether or not someone specifically asked for it," Thurber said, who bought a multi-semester D permit. "It is completely unfair that some students received a refund and some may not. It is very sneaky of UCF."
Junior health sciences major Hailey Upchurch said that she was upset that UCF did not announce that partial refunds were an option.
"I believe a partial refund should’ve been generated to every car pass purchaser," Upchurch said. "They could’ve emailed us, and told us about the option."
Upchurch also said that the refunds should be offered again. She said that she will email Parking Services and request a partial refund "regardless of them suspending the option."
"It’s not fair to pay all of that money just to not be able to use it," said Upchurch, who bought a multi-semester pass. "Charging for parking in the first place, and how costly it is, on top of the amount that they charge for tuition is laughable."