Colleges should pay
Monday, May 7, 2012 - 3:27 pm

When I was a student at Clarkson, other than a few eateries in Cheel, if we wanted a meal we ate at one of the dining halls. If we wanted decent pizza we came downtown to have a slice, and as college kids do, we frequented the pubs and poured money into downtown. Now, both Clarkson and SUNY are nearly self- contained entities. There is a Tim Horton’s at SUNY Potsdam and a Subway at Clarkson. I learned in economics all about cost benefit ratio and I believe Potsdam has either reached this critical point or is near. Potsdam PD estimate 50 percent of their costs are directly tied to college students. Do their $10 and $25 “fines” ever equal the amount spent on keeping the neighborhoods safe? We have fire and ambulance on their knees begging for new equipment, to keep us all safe, and without the colleges to “defend” they wouldn’t need trucks as big or as many ambulances. As the colleges become more and more self-sustaining, small businesses in Potsdam take the hit. The colleges can’t have it both ways, they can’t “need” village services and give nothing or very little back. It’s time to tax the townhouses on both campuses, the President’s houses and all buildings not directly used for academia. If not, maybe the village should shut off services until they pitch in more!