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  Daily Bulletin

University of Waterloo | Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

Friday, January 29, 1999

  • Rent hikes hit part-time students
  • Retired UW art professor honoured
  • Deadlines, scunts, bluegrass etc.
  • Community volunteer opportunities
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Rent hikes hit part-time students

Tenants in UW Apartments (formerly known as Married Students' Apartments) who are not full-time UW students are reeling from the shock of rent hikes ranging from 17.9 per cent for a one-bedroom unit to 38.6 per cent for two bedrooms.

Notification of the increases was given this week, pending approval by the board of governors on February 3. If ratified, the new rates are effective August 1. At that time, rent for a one-bedroom apartment -- not occupied by a full-time student -- will rise from $509 to $600, while the rent for two bedrooms will increase from $541 to $750.

Although the move to jack up the rents was in response to the the new Tenant Protection Act -- which replaces the Landlord and Tenant Act -- as well as to changes in the university's property tax status, the rationale, says university business operations director Bud Walker, is to free up housing for full-time students.

While the need for additional residence space to accommodate ATOP expansion is not the reason for the rent increases, "it'll help," he adds. "We have to have more spaces for students, regardless of ATOP. He projects the need at about 100 more units by next September, and estimates "well over 70 out of the 600 (units at UW Apartments) are not occupied by full-time students." A proposal is also in the works this winter to convert the tower apartments in the complex to single-student accommodation.

The problem for universities across the province, he explains, is students who graduate and remain in family housing units on campus. Under the Landlord and Tenant Act, tenants could not be evicted because they were no longer students.

With the Tenant Protection Act in place, universities are allowed to stipulate that tenants be students. "That's good news for universities," says Walker, "because it allows family housing to be used for students." Such housing is usually cheaper than commercial units in the community because of differences in tax structures for universities. Because of changes in property tax regulations, tenants of UW Apartments are now required to pay local boards of education $400 per year for each child attending school.

Tenants who signed rental agreements under the old Landlord and Tenant Act can't be evicted for being non-students, he added, but rent for those tenants can now be raised without rent controls applying.

Although housing administrators did consider the possible negative implications for part-time students and their families living in the apartment complex, Walker says, "they decided to stick to the UW policy of gearing on-campus housing to full-time students."

Effective May 1, rent for full-time students in UW Apartments will decrease from $509 to $494 for one bedroom, and from $541 to $525 for two bedrooms. However, for the first time, all tenants will be assessed a separate parking fee of $20 per month for each vehicle occupying a space at the apartment complex.

Rent for full-time students represents "discounted rents that are below market rates," according to Wendy Cooper, manager of UW Apartments. "All other residents will pay rents that are in line with market rates."

Full-time students living in the complex will be required to provide proof of registration status each term, she adds. "A resident who is a UW co-op student occupying an apartment during a work term will be eligible for the discounted rates. For cases where a sublet is allowed under the terms of the lease, the non-discounted rental rates will apply during the sublet period."

Walker noted that tenants of UW Apartments were given notice at a meeting last June that priority would be given to full-time students, with others facing rent increases. At that time, changes to the tax system and the implications of the new Tenant Protection Act were also addressed.

The board of governors will also be asked to approve rent increases of two per cent for student villages and four per cent for Minota Hagey residences. No changes are recommended for Columbia Lake Townhouses.

Retired UW art professor honoured

UW distinguished professor emerita Nancy-Lou Patterson has been named 1999 folk artist-in-residence at the Joseph Schneider Haus in Kitchener. Her residency as an artist/writer will be launched on February 13 and 14 with a solo exhibition of her work at the museum.

She will spend the year offering a series of lectures, readings and workshops, beginning with a talk on her own work, "The Gift to be Simple: An Artist's Life", on February 14 at 2 p.m.

Founder of the fine arts department at UW, she is known as "an internationally published scholar, curator, poet and author" as well as "one of Canada's leading textile artists". She was awarded an honourary Doctor of Literature by Wilfrid Laurier University in 1993 for her "leadership in linking religious and artistic traditions of this community." Her works of liturgical art, including textiles, clay, and stained glass are found in Canada, the United States, England, and South Africa.

Another UW scholar, Ross Fair of Arthur, will talk on February 18 at 8 p.m. on his research conducted as the 1998 Edna Staebler Fellow at the Schneider Haus. Fair, who earned his BA and MA in history at UW, will speak on "Model Farmers, Dubious Citizens". He suggests that while Pennsylvania-German settlers were "considered by many contemporary observers to be the best farmers in the Province, they 'officially stood apart' because of their exemption from judicial oaths and militia duty, and thus became the subjects of controversy."

For more information on any of these events, contact the Schneider Haus at 742-7752.

Deadlines, scunts, bluegrass etc.

Today is the "absolute last day to pay fees for the Winter term," says the registrar's office. "Tuition fees or arrangements will not be accepted after this date, and the Winter academic records of students who have not paid will be deleted."

"Canada's Position in Global Tourism and Tourism Research" is the topic of today's Contemporary Perspectives on Tourism lecture from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. in Burt Matthews Hall room 1621. The speaker is Scott Meis of the Canadian tourism commission. For details, contact Brenda Sokolowski at ext. 2433.

Undergraduate students can get acquainted with the candidates running in the upcoming Federation of Students elections, thanks to a series of forums starting today. Candidates can be quizzed today at noon in the CPH foyer (outside POETS), and will be available at additional forums next week.

Of interest to co-op students: job posting number 7 will be available by noon today, and will expire by 8 p.m. on Monday.

Graduate students with legal questions will find help with the answers today at the GSA legal aid clinic starting at 1 p.m. at the Grad House. Appointments are necessary and can be arranged through Bob Sproule at ext. 3634.

The winter '99 Havenger Scunt begins today at 1:30 p.m. and runs through Saturday. Organized by the systems design 2002 class, The Quest is open to students from all faculties. This term's theme is King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.

The first Japanese animation show of the term gets underway today at 4:30 p.m. in EL room 201, and continues Saturday at 11 a.m. Sponsored by CTRL-A, the Club That Really Likes Anime, the event is open to all and admission is free. Titles include Vision of Escaflowne, Rurouni Kenshin and Earthian.

An information meeting for the Red Cross First Responder Course will be held at 6:30 in PAC room 1001 this evening. An advanced skills and knowledge first aid course, it offers three special components: administration of free flow oxygen, use of oropharyngeal airways, and use of automatic external defibrillators. Participants must have completed a standard first aid course. For more information, contact Rebecca Boyd at ext. 5034.

A K-W bluegrass gospel group, Five on the Floor, performs tonight at 7:30 in Siegfried Hall, St. Jerome's University. The event is sponsored by St. Jerome's Centre for Catholic Experience. Admission is free and all are welcome.

Make your beds. UW will play host today and tomorrow to the 19th annual residence life conference. "Over 250 Dons and professional residence staff, representing colleges and universities from across Ontario, will be visiting our campus this weekend," reports Leanne O'Donnell, director of residence life in the Village 1 housing office. "This event provides students with the opportunity learn from one another through educational programs, workshops, and networking with peers."

On Saturday morning, things will be dry in the Optometry building, with all water shut off between 8 and 11 a.m. to allow new lines to be tied in for the laser clinic.

Renison College will celebrate Founders' Day on Sunday with Evensong at 3 p.m. at St. John the Evangelist Church in Kitchener. Dinner will follow at 6:30 p.m. at Renison. The event is part of the college's 40th anniversary celebrations.

Community volunteer opportunities

The Volunteer Action Centre offers a chance to gain valuable experience and assist the community. Among the most pressing needs: For information on these and other volunteer positions, phone the Volunteer Action Centre at 742-8610.

Barbara Elve

Editor of the Daily Bulletin: Chris Redmond
Information and Public Affairs, University of Waterloo
credmond@uwaterloo.ca | (519) 888-4567 ext. 3004
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Copyright © 1999 University of Waterloo