From a September 2003 e-mail to campus from Associate Vice Chancellor Chuck Rowley.
In late June, 2003, the vendor that provides UCR pay phone service notified C&C that it planned on dramatically increasing the fees associated with operating and maintaining the approximately 80 pay phones located at UCR. The estimated annual fee increase was close to $60,000 and was attributed to decreased pay phone use, which is due to the dramatic increases in cell phone utilization.
When we received this information, C&C immediately contacted other UCs and discovered that many campuses had also been contacted by pay phone suppliers and were facing similar cost increases. All the campuses we spoke to were in the process of consolidating pay phone access (or had already completed this consolidation).
C&C interacted with representatives from the Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs, the Vice Chancellor of Administration, and the UCR Police Department to determine whether or not a reduced number of pay phones, combined with other types of public access phones (e.g. Escort Phones, Emergency Phones, etc.), would provide an appropriate level of non-office, non-cell phone access for campus faculty, staff, and students. Particular attention was given to the potential safety implications of reducing the number of campus pay phones.
Based on the aforementioned input from the VCSA, VCA, and UCR PD, C&C has acted on a plan that reduces the quantity of campus pay phones, thereby avoiding fee increases during the upcoming fiscal year. Importantly, C&C received input from several sources stating that more could be done to improve communications concerning the locations of public access phones. As a result, we will be working with various campus groups to include more information about public access phones on UCR signage. In the meantime, we have constructed this web site to detail information about the locations of pay phones, escort phones, etc.
We would like your feedback and suggestions concerning the mix and location of campus public access phones. C&C will be engaging in a Request for Proposal relating to campus pay phones, and it may be possible to increase the quantity of pay phones during the upcoming academic year. C&C also meets periodically with various campus safety committees and groups, and your input will be extremely valuable as we interact with these groups in the months ahead.
If you have any questions or desire further information, please e-mail Jill Hishmeh, Manager of Communications Services. Thank you in advance for your feedback and input.