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The Harvard Corporation yesterday authorized a $125 increase in the fee for students who live off-campus, and a smaller increase in the room rent and board rate for students in the Houses.
The non-resident fee will rise from $25 to $150; room rent will rise from $550 to $580; and the board rate will rise from $620 to $660. The increases will be effective in September.
The increase in the non-resident fee was necessary "to reduce implied subsidization of non-resident by resident students, with respect to House facilities, intramural athletic costs, and other general expenses," L. Gard Wiggins, administrative vice-president of the University, said yesterday.
He explained that the level of $150 for 1968-69 will reduce the imbalance significantly, but said that "smaller adjustments" may be needed in the following two years.
Richard T. Gill '48, whose Mather House subcommittee recommended a non-resident fee raise in January, denied that the increase was part of an effort to discourage students from living off-campus. "There should be no attempt to use fees to influence the pattern of resident and non-resident living," Gill said, adding that by any calculation the fee increase falls short of covering the Houses' expenditures on non-resident students. He cited the costs of maintaining house offices, libraries, and common rooms.
"I wouldn't be surprised if there are further increases in the next couple of years." Gill said, but he predicted that the fee increase would not affect the residency plans of most students.
Wiggins traced the increases in the room rent and board rates--the first since 1960--to "the rising costs of labor, material, and food." He said that the costs of labor have been rising at four to five per cent annually and that food price increases have been almost as great.
"We try to operate on a break-even budget," Wiggins said. "Without the increase we would have had to operate at a deficit."
Wiggins added that the Financial Aid Office will take the higher charges into account when financial aid awards are reviewed for next year.
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