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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Thursday, May 13, 2010

Parking passes may go to auction


By Ferd Lewis
Advertiser Staff Writer

The University of Hawai'i is considering an online reverse auction to decide who gets the final 800 or less Aloha Stadium parking passes from the school's allotment for the upcoming football season.

A person who said he has been briefed on the proposal said the auction might start at $400 and move downward in $50 increments until the number of available passes is exhausted.

Athletic director Jim Donovan declined comment "at this time."

Donovan said he would comment when instructions were mailed to season-ticket holders on May 21. The auction is expected to begin June 7.

Last year UH had approximately 2,900 parking passes of which all but nearly 800 went to purchasers of 'Ahahui Koa Ānuenue packages. The remainder were put on sale to season-ticket holders whose donations or premiums met certain thresholds but were shortly exhausted by the heavy demand. That prompted complaints from hopeful purchasers whose checks had to be returned.

UH has been reviewing the policy seeking a more transparent approach, and recently announced the renewal deadline for season-ticket orders has been extended to June 14 "due to feedback from season-ticket holders ..."

But the latest proposal has bothered some longtime season-ticket holders.

"It isn't the money that bothers me so much, it is the way UH has handled it," said one, who has multiple tickets and asked that his name not be used. "You'd think the person paying the premium would have greater consideration than someone buying one (season ticket) for the first time."

UH has approximately 7,000 season-ticket holders who account for more than 21,000 tickets. Aloha Stadium has approximately 8,000 parking stalls, about 2,900 of which UH controlled last season. UH is not expected to be able to secure more stalls this season.

Last year purchasers of the Koa Ānuenue package received passes with the remainder being sold to season-ticket holders. This year sales of the packages are said to be up.

A postcard sent to season-ticket holders recently said the extension of season-ticket sales "... will allow for the allocation of 2010 football parking passes prior to the renewal of tickets."

In an H-mail sent to fans yesterday, UH said, "The football season ticket renewal deadline has been extended to Monday, June 14. The Stan Sheriff Center Box Office will be closed the week of May 17-21. It will re-open Monday, May 24, at 8:00 a.m. Renewals for UH football or the Sheraton Hawaii Bowl may still be mailed, faxed or completed online via www.etickethawaii.com during the closure."