Editor, Daily Nexus,
Over the last five years, you have all probably grown accustomed to the sight of soccer mania on Storke Field every Saturday during Fall Quarter. For this purpose of letting thousands of local kids get some needed exercise and lessons in team play, the American Youth Soccer Organization gladly pays $30,000 in field fees each year. Now an inflexible policy by Transportation and Parking Services may end all of that.
Demand for parking at the adjoining Storke Field lot is pretty low on Saturdays. Those soccer moms and dads aren’t robbing anyone of a parking spot and are really only there for about 90 minutes each at the most. Parking Services is demanding $70,000 for the use of the dirt lot during AYSO’s 10-week season! This will force AYSO to seek alternative locations and furthermore, will limit the number of kids that can play.
I have coached AYSO soccer for the last two years; it has been an awesome experience. I know that there are not so many UCSB students that have children or feel personal repercussions by this Parking Services action. I do, however, hope that memories of playing soccer – or a belief that we should not sever our ties so readily with the local community – will lead you to support AYSO in asking UCSB to not be so inflexible in this matter. Budget issues are on everyone’s mind. But which is better, a step down in revenue from an exorbitant fee or a big fat $0 from the loss of youth soccer? I am writing Transportation and Parking Services Director Tom Roberts and Chancellor Henry Yang an e-mail regarding this and am asking you to do the same.