Price of life ever-climbing

M’Alyssa Bundy


  The price of life has changed quite a bit from when The Runner first began 40 years ago. Campus dining was bland and lacked variety and students sure had an opinion on that just as they had opinions on rising in parking passes as well as other issues. Though a lot has changed in 40 years, the mentality and complaints of students seem to be quite similar.
Nov. 19, 1978, page eight: “Parking fee proposal sets ‘sizable’ increase”
“The fee raise if adopted will amount to 50 percent of present levels by 1981. At CSB the parking fee will go from the present $10 per quarter to $12 in Fall 1979 and from there to $15 in Fall 1981” [and all the way to $45 here in present day].
March 6, 1980, page one, Hope Freedman and Paul Linfesty wrote about the $5 commuter fee. Daniel J. Neumann contends the commuter fee and expresses that the privileges provided due to the fee were not made aware of to the students. George Callison, business manager, says that they were. The commuter fee was not going as planned. There is not one on the schedule fee for us in the 2014-15 school year.
March 5, 1984, page one, Ron Johnson rants about no student affordable housing surrounding campus. “Tenneco Corporation, which owns the land surrounding CSB, sells parcels to investors, who then develop the property. ‘With the high prices we’re asking, coupled with the high costs of construction, it’s not feasible for anyone to build anything that would rent for $300 or less,’ Chuck Tolfree, Tenneco Land Co. official said.” I would say that it is still the case that housing is not quite cheap close to campus. The Springs on Camino Media, walking distance to CSUB, have a rent of $935 per month for a 1 bed, 1 bath.
April 11, 1990, page eight of The Runner, Linda H. replies to a Dear Alice question. “Dear Alice: Why is the cafeteria food so dang expensive? Where’s all the loot going?” To summarize: Jim Linch, Director of Food Services explains that there is a ‘competitive analysis’ done twice a year between the campus and fast food restaurants. He believed we had a good competitive price. Others naturally tended to disagree.
Jan. 16, 1991, page seven of The Runner, Tami Burch speaks about cheapness of fast food options just minutes from campus. They are cutting their prices. Taco Bell has $.59, $.79 and $.99 options. She says this in comparison to the cafeteria food, “While I do not intentionally slight the campus cafeteria, they sometimes are a bit overpriced because they know we are hungry and in a hurry and we don’t want to lose our parking places. They have us by the bookbags on that one.”
According to, the average cost of a gallon of regular gas in 1975 was $0.57. In comparison to today where gas is still going up from around $2.50 as the weather is heating up. A dozen eggs was averaged to be $0.77; today at Target you can get Markey Pantry Grade A 12 count for $1.79 and then a brand with Cage Free for around $3.99. According to, a movie ticket cost $2.03. Today a movie ticket can range from $5 to $20 (matinee – IMAX).
In an apples to apples comparison, the price of life has gone up yet so has the quality of certain things like cafeteria food, entertainment, and even The Runner itself.