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New printing fee implemented

Sept. 7, 2004

Because of an exponential climb in printing volume and costs, the Academic Advancement Center (AAC), Alden Library and Computer Services (CS) have changed the printing requirements for their computer labs by implementing a fee for pages printed after an initial free quota is used.

The change, which affects labs located in Alden Library, the Computer Services Center, the Academic Advancement Center and Boyd and Brown residence hall computer labs, allows students to print up to 50 pages per month at no charge. After the initial quota, students are charged five cents for each additional printout. The 50-page quota is refreshed at the beginning of each month and unused balances are not carried over to the following month.

"The small fee will help reduce waste, recover some of the costs for paper and toner usage and contain unbounded printing," said Joan Wigal, assistant director of computer services. "A more than 25 percent waste factor necessitated the implementation of a minimal printing charge."

In order to offer students the lowest possible rate, the student technology fee and funds from computer services are being utilized to subsidize student printing costs. The AAC and Computer Services have not charged for printing in the past, but the new cost is less than what is charged in many other computer labs on campus and at other universities in Ohio.

"We wanted to create a consistent printing environment," said Julia Zimmerman, dean of university libraries. "The university has been under tough budget times, and there have been prime examples of waste and inefficiency in paper usage."

In the library, printouts no longer include cover pages and students are able to pick up their own documents from a shared printer. Vendacard printing in Alden Library is still available for faculty, staff and community members as well as students who do not want their university account to be charged.

The printing fee was implemented this summer and Wigal said students have been receptive.

"They understand that we are trying to contain costs and reduce waste while still providing them with 50 free pages each month," she said. "I think students also recognize that Alden Library, Computer Services Center and the Academic Advancement Center worked extensively with Student Senate representatives who were fundamentally involved in setting the charge per page and the free quota amount after having received feedback from their student constituents."

Print charges are billed electronically by the bursar and appear on monthly student bills as a single line item labeled "Computer Lab Printing Fee." Additional information regarding the new printing policy can be downloaded at www.ohio.edu/cts/labhandout.pdf. Students may also review the number of pages they have printed at http://iliad.cats.ohiou.edu/cgi-cf/adminsys/printer within 24 hours of printing.

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