The Suffolk County Parks Department has decided not to charge a $4 twilight parking fee at Hampton Bays' ; however, it has instituted the fee its West Hampton Dunes and Shirley-based .
The move was made after the East End Supervisors and Mayors Association and local families who had previously enjoyed free nights at the beaches urged the county not to charge the fee between 5 p.m. at 8 p.m.
On Friday Suffolk County Parks Commissioner Greg Dawson said that his department had been considering not charging the fee at Meshutt, but the other fees were still on the table. He said the fees are necessary to help defray the costs of running the beaches.
He surmises the fees will generate $90,000 for the parks department coffers.
County Legis. Jay Schneiderman, who voted against the measure that gave the parks department authority to charge the fee, said he believes the county is making an error in charging the fee whether it be at two beaches, or three.
"People are going to be upset and I think this is going to impact the number of people that go to the beaches to listen to music in the evenings," said Schneiderman, who said he tried to compromise with the parks department.
"They feel they need the money," said Schneiderman, who feels that the county is going to be hearing from a lot of upset residents.
A number of Patch readers voiced their concerns over the fees last week and of the 96 people who respond to our poll about the issue, 83 said they are against the fees.
commented, "This is an absolute outrage. Nickel and dimed to death."
And wrote, "They already raised the fee from $3-$8 and they are collecting money till 5pm. It is a crime that they charge this much for locals to park at the beach. I was so pissed that they raised the price $5. Why?? specially if we live in the community,and just want to go for a quick swim in the bay.. they are crooks.. and our taxes still keep going up and up.. find your money elsewhere and leave us residence alone."
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