QU overstepping its boundaries

Jeremy Stull

When Quinnipiac gained special permits to build the York Hill campus before its opening in fall of 2009, it was under the pretense that the people living there would be considered on-campus residents and not commuters. The number of parking spots zoned for the Mount Carmel campus would not be adequate for York Hill residents if they were considered commuters, according to the Planning and Zoning commission meeting in October.

Until this fall, the Hamden Planning and Zoning Commission was under the impression that York Hill students were not driving down to Mount Carmel. Imagine their displeasure when Bernie Pellegrino and the Quinnipiac delegation presented information that completely went against the prior agreement.

Quinnipiac then revised its policy in October, giving only seniors the right to drive down and park during peak hours, which seemed to appease the commission.

Senior Vice President for Administration Richard Ferguson sent out an email Feb. 8 to York Hill juniors which informed them all that all parking restrictions were being removed. This was done without consultation of the Hamden Planning and Zoning Commission and without changing the wording or the spirit of the original agreement.

The email said, “To avoid disruption in academic programs we have revised the policy to allow juniors living on York Hill to park on the Mount Carmel campus at any time.”

While this seems to be an admirable cause, it is illegal. Plain and simple. Quinnipiac should have taken this situation into account before building York Hill or before agreeing to the terms that it did.

The hubris exhibited by the university during this entire parking situation should serve as a warning to all of us soon leaving the Quinnipiac bubble. Within Hamden, Quinnipiac is the second biggest employer next to the town itself. It holds a lot of money and pumps a lot of money into the surrounding community. Holding such a position gives the institution the idea that it can make its own rules.

If Quinnipiac comes out on top here, it will simply be a microcosm of how society and government work; those with the clout (re: wealth) get their way.