In order to continue to function, WSU-DAS charges users fees, based on the number of weather stations they subscribe to. These
funds contribute to the salaries of the computer programmers and the manager/educator.
Although DAS has improved dramatically within the last 5 years (full reprogramming of the tool, and offering twice the number of models as initially), there have been no cost increases passed on to the users. In order to insure DAS as a long-term sustained resource, available for future users, this year DAS has decided it must raise user rates.
For the following reasons, annual rates will increase this year from $150 to $210 per station:
- Normally WSU wants a 4% increase in costs per year in grants, DAS has not been forced to follow this until now.
- In the past, DAS has paid the 2% credit card surcharge on all the purchases of stations, this cost will be part of the user fee.
- WSU will start charging 8% overhead on all fees we collect, so this eats out of our operating budget.
- WSU is no longer paying all the salary of our head computer programmer.
- Our current director Vince Jones will be retiring in the fall. In the past, funding from his grants funded most of the manager/educator's salary. These will need to come from user fees in the future.
The WSU Entomology department is in the process of hiring an independent consultant to seek other opportunities for potentially supporting DAS longer term, but until another revenue stream is identified and tapped, we need to deal with our increased costs.
In a meeting with our beta-users team, we decided that this increase of $60 per year per station plus a 4% annual rate increase moving forward is our best current option for insuring WSU-DAS is a resource available through the university moving into the future.
Thanks so much for your support and understanding.
The DAS Team