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Lack of bus passes for students a problem

At the beginning of each academic year, UC Berkeley students can purchase a sticker for their student ID cards, that allows them unlimited rides on any AC Transit bus. This pass, a $1,200 value, only costs $58.50 per semester in students’ registration fees and includes transbay lines. Students at the Peralta Colleges can also pay $35 to $50 for semester passes.

If offered at Mills, similar bus passes would save commuting and on-campus students hundreds of dollars a semester and ease parking and shuttle problems.

Familiar problems are only getting worse with increasing construction and enrollment. Parking is limited on campus resulting in frustrating tickets, and students missing classes due to a full or absent shuttle. Subsidized bus passes provide a solution to these problems.

With cheap bus passes, people would rely less on the overtaxed shuttle and their cars, parking would open up, and students could afford to get themselves where they need to go.

As California State Assembly member Sandré Swanson, who led legislation to provide subsidized passes for Peralta students, pointed out, the savings would have an especially important impact on students who work and support families.

Though as a private college, Mills does not receive public funding, other private schools like the University of San Francisco provide bus passes.

If Mills adopted bus passes, the College would be investing in a green policy. Besides saving students money, Mills would be taking action to reduce traffic congestion, pollution and gas dependency, while providing the campus with reliable, affordable and more sustainable transportation.