Port Washington, New Hyde Park commuter parking fees to increase to close pandemic funding gap
Some Nassau municipalities are hiking their parking permit fees in order to plug budget shortfalls.
The commuter parking lots near the Port Washington train station are reserved exclusively for Port Washington residents on weekdays. However, because of the pandemic, far fewer parking permits were sold this year, leading to a major budget shortfall.
To make up the difference, Town of North Hempstead officials recently voted to increase the price of permits.
As of now, an annual parking pass in Port Washington costs $240. In 2021, that price will shoot up to $400, increasing each year until it reaches $700 in 2025.
Town officials say this had to be done because parking pass sales were down significantly this year.
According to officials, fewer than 4,000 were purchased in 2020 compared to more than 31,000 in 2019.
The drastic drop has led to a revenue shortfall of around $600,000.
Town Councilwoman Mariann Dalimonte, a Port Washington resident and former longtime commuter, says the price increase will preserve hard-to-find parking spaces for Port Washington residents when more people start commuting again.
The councilwoman says the parking fees will be re-evaluated every month and if revenue picks up, the increases could be stopped before reaching that $700 figure.
The Village of New Hyde Park is also trying to make up the difference. Fees for parking lots used specifically for people who work in the area will go from $300 to $400 dollars per year.
"The pandemic's put a lot of pressure on village finances, so we're down over $600,000 in revenue projections," says Mayor Lawrence Montreuil.