We, the residents of Verano Place, have become aware of the many purposes behind the sharp rent increase for the 2006-2007 academic year. This petition is to express a unified voice of the Verano residents against the magnitude of the increase, and future increases of this magnitude. We understand that some part of the rent increase is unavoidable and some part is directly a result of our consumption of utilities. We can accept this and will work on the resident level to promote conservation of utilities. However, the policy to raise Verano rents such that they can be comparable with Palo Verde for the sole purpose of solving occupancy problems in Palo Verde is unsound policy. If housing is having a problem with occupancy in Palo Verde, lower Palo Verde rents to be comparable with Verano (or a combination of nominal rent increase in Verano with nominal rent decrease in Palo Verde). If the future goal of housing is to combine the housing stock of Verano and Palo Verde, such that there will be no preferences in price for one or the other, then making Verano rents equal to Palo Verde is not the way to go. Doing this will continue to extend the occupancy problems in Palo Verde, while forcing Verano residents to stretch an increasingly thinning stipend that does not change with rent increases (the problem is compounded for undergraduate families without a stipend). Through the resident councils of Verano and Palo Verde, we are willing to meet halfway on doing our part to keep rent increases at a minimum. We only ask you to re-think this harmful policy to all residents of graduate student housing.
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