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The Carletonian

The Carletonian

The Carletonian

Laundry Change Eliminates Change

< result of a new contract, Carleton changed its laundry service this year, with campus houses switching from coin-operated units to flat rate of $25 per term and with the installation of roughly 180 new High Efficiency washers and dryers that cost 25 cents more than the old machines.

The flat-rate system stems from complaints to the CSA about finding coins for the coin-operated machines. However, students have mixed reactions to the flat-rate system.

“The laundry machines are really convenient now that I don’t have to worry about collecting quarters or grabbing my OneCard,” said Leslie Moore ‘15. “But, there is absolutely no way I’ll end up doing $25 worth of laundry each term.”

Other students echoed this sentiment. David Cutler-Kreutz ’15 said he “doesn’t even use $25 on laundry per year.”

But besides switching to high-efficiency detergents, Francina Block ’15 said her laundry habits have not changed much yet.

Julia Reich ’15 worries the new system may have a negative environmental impact. “Carleton is essentially encouraging me to do extra loads to make the $25 ‘worth it’.”

She is concerned that students will end up using a dryer rather than drying racks because it is less time consuming, and they have to pay for laundry up front. Also, in the past there was an incentive not to use driers because it cost 75 cents per load.

Yet, Carleton already tried the flat-rate system in the townhouses and felt that the interest houses were the next logical step when renegotiating the laundry equipment rental contract, explained Director of Auxilary Services Dan Bergeson.

According to Bergeson, it is not the Auxiliary Services, but the CSA that has the most to gain from the switch. The CSA gets commissions from OneCard purchases, including all laundry money spent. In fact, two thirds of CSA commissions come from laundry, fluctuating between $25,000 and $30,000 annually.

Bergeson said it is the only school he knows of that gives other departments laundry commissions.

It is unlikely that the fee system will go campus wide. “We’ve got a fair amount of interest in having as robust a OneCard system as we can,” said Bergeson. “The more things Carleton can have as part of the OneCard network, the more valuable it is for students to carry in their pocket.”

Even so, Bergeson does not rule out the possibility of one day having the residence halls follow the house model.

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