When Plattsburgh City Beach opens for a new season a week from Friday, the way to pay for parking there will be very different. After a vote by the Common Council Thursday night, the Lake City won’t allow anyone to pay by the hour anymore.
A day pass will cost $12 dollars instead of $11. There’s also the option of a $60 permit for the whole season, which runs from the Friday of Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day.
“We’ve run major deficits at the beach complex for many years now,” Mayor Chris Rosenquest told the Common Council Thursday night. “We can finally see some light at the end of that tunnel, maybe turn a page in the next few years and generate a surplus for the beach.”
Beach parking will be enforced from 10:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. every day during the season. The one councilor who voted against the new fee structure (delineated on pages 12 and 13 of this document) was Elizabeth Gibbs.
“I think that a flat fee of $5 — that is less than you pay at the state park — would be better,” Councilor Gibbs said. “I don’t think that (in) the first year of parking, we should be trying to be profitable. We should be trying to break even.”
People living in the City of Plattsburgh or the Town of Plattsburgh will be exempt this year and can park for free. Meanwhile, people with disabilities will be exempt every year both at the beach and in the downtown core.
The Common Council has recently proposed downtown kiosk parking fees of $1 per hour hour and $7.25 per day, which would mean weekdays from 8:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. Downtown parking permits for three months, six months and a full year would be available.
A downtown businesswoman whose family has 30 employees told the council it would cost $10,000 a year for all of them to park.
“To add this additional expense to them — although some people may think, ‘oh; $35 a month for this, that and the other thing isn’t a lot of money’ — for these people, this is a lot of money,” Jennifer Boyer of Warren Tire Service Center said.
Several council members expressed similar thoughts, and Mayor Rosenquest noticed. He decided to not force a vote.
“If it certainly pleases the council, we can withdraw the item,” the mayor said. “We have two, three weeks to work through some things.”
Immediately after Rosenquest said that, the councilors tabled the downtown parking issue for now. Rosenquest said that it’ll likely return to the Common Council’s agenda in mid-June.