Custodial and maintenance costs make up a growing part of facilities operations expenses, accounting for 31% and 33% of total operating costs, respectively. According to the recently released 1999-2000 Comparative Costs and Staffing Report for Educational Facilities (CCAS), custodial operating costs have grown gradually over the past several years, representing approximately 24% of operating costs in 1994 and 27% in 1998.

Maintenance operating costs have grown from 23% in 1994 to 33% in 2000. According to APPA Executive Vice President Lander Medlin, the increase in maintenance costs is largely due to the aging of college facilities. Approximately 78% of campus buildings were constructed prior to 1980.

CCAS data also indicated decreases in some operating cost areas. The proportion of utility operating costs dropped for 2000, from 15% in 1994, to 8% in 2000. Grounds maintenance costs also dropped, decreasing from 7% in 1994 to 2% in 2000.

The Comparative Costs & Staffing Survey is conducted biannually by APPA, the Association of Higher Education Facilities Officers. The 1999-2000 Survey was mailed to 1,600 higher education and K-12 institutions. A total of 248 usable surveys were included in the report, reflecting a 15.5% response rate.