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Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Beach Sticker Increase Approved

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The Westport Parks and Recreation Commission tonight approved a measure to increase fees for parking at town beaches. The proposal still needs Board of Selectmen approval.

Resident parking emblems will be increased from $25 to $30, and the senior citizen fees will go from $10 to $15, which would be the first increase in the senior rate since 1990.

Other rates also approved for increases include those for a resident with a non-Westport registered car, which goes from $145 to $175, and the Weston resident rate, which jumps from $190 to $200.

Non-resident stickers—which are limited to 300 per year and always sell out—will be increased from $375 to $400.

The stickers grant access to Compo Beach, Burying Hill Beach, Old Mill Beach, some Longshore Club Park parking lots and the Mill Pond parking lot.

Parks and Recreation Director Stuart McCarthy said he understands the percent increase in the senior rate is higher than the rate for the regular resident stickers, but it is the first increase in 16 years.

“It’s been a long time,” he said. “We are still maintaining a 50 percent discount.”

Compo Beach’s popularity has increased dramatically over the last two years, McCarthy said, to the point where there have been parking capacity problems.

The increase in rates will help cover services to offset the popularity of the beach, he said, including more trash pick-up services, custodians and guest services.

The changes would enable him to hire a new guard at the gate and free up the adult supervisor to oversee the entire operation at Compo, he said.

McCarthy said he did not bring a measure forward on day rates at the beach because those do not need to be set until May 1.

He said he would bring a proposal to the commission at a later meeting.

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Posted 01/31/06 at 03:30 AM  Permalink



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