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franklin county times

Enough warning: MHS will tow student parking violators beginning Friday

By By Steve Gillespie/The Meridian Star
Dec. 13, 2001
Sylvia Young paid $20 at the start of the school year for a reserved parking space at Meridian High School, but she doesn't always park there especially if she is running late.
Young, a senior, said that three or four times this year she arrived at school to find someone else parked in her spot.
Meridian High School officials will unleash tow trucks starting Friday to remedy parking problems they say have gone on too long. The towing will be done at the owner's expense, as stated in school policy, for vehicles parked where they shouldn't be.
At the same time, more parking areas have been opened at the school, according to Billy Burnham, MHS athletic director and assistant principal.
Burnham, who is overseeing the parking situation, said the school now requires students with vehicles to register their cars with the school and purchase parking decals for $20.
Previously, reserved spaces were sold on a first-come, first-serve basis at registration and were offered to seniors first, then juniors and sophomores last.
Burnham said some parking was lost this year because of construction on the campus. But he said the school has made additional parking available using part of the band practice field and tennis court areas.
MHS principal James Bounds said money from the parking spaces pays for security expenses at the parking lot, including the purchase and maintenance of video equipment and radios for security officers.
Burnham said the school has two to three students every morning who are parked in spaces designated for someone else.
Burnham said announcements have been made to students for the past two weeks, reminding them of the parking guidelines. He said the guidelines have been covered with teachers and all students were given copies of the rules for parking.
Young hopes tow truck activity on campus will remedy the situation. She said she feels like the students who park in others' spaces don't care about the inconvenience it causes and the worst that has happened to them so far is they have been asked to move their car.
Steve Gillespie is a staff writer for The Meridian Star. Call him at 693-1551, ext. 3233, or e-mail him at sgillespie@themeridianstar.com.

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