UMSL considers student fee for campus performing arts center

Friday, December 6, 2002

ST. LOUIS - University of Missouri-St. Louis students could be asked to help pay for operations at a new performing arts center nearing completion on the campus.

Pending approval by the university system's Board of Curators, the proposal would charge students $10 a semester and $5 during the summer session for the center.

The fee would take effect next fall, bringing in about $370,000 a year, or 30 percent of the building's projected yearly operating deficit of $1.2 million.

The university was expecting the state to provide $1 million of that, but the money hasn't materialized.

Students would get a 10 percent discount on a pair of tickets for every event at the center.

University spokesman Bob Samples said the proposed fees are a reaction to state cuts in the university budget. The state contributed $40 million of the $50 million it has cost to build the center, with private donations making up the difference.

The building is expected to be done early next year. University officials have said they plan to open it for performances next fall, but they haven't yet announced any events.

A student government group narrowly approved the fee. Its vote is strictly advisory.

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