Friday, August 19, 2022

Carolina Beach’s newest budget proposal suggests even higher parking rates

The town is looking to increase revenue by increasing parking and Freeman Park passes even more than proposed last week

Currently, pay parking in Carolina Beach runs from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. with a daily maximum of $10; those hours could expand, and costs might go up. (Port City Daily | Michael Kane)
Currently, pay parking in Carolina Beach runs from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. with a daily maximum of $10; those hours could expand, and costs might go up. (Port City Daily/Michael Kane)

CAROLINA BEACH—Carolina Beach’s leaders have been looking for ways to increase revenue and decrease spending for Fiscal Year 2018-2019, and town staff has managed to propose options for doing just that.

If approved, the total operating budget for the upcoming year would be $24.5 million. Town Council will hold a public hearing and a budget presentation on Tuesday, after which council will be asked to approve the budget.

Read more: Carolina Beach looking to hike parking, Freeman Park fees

The town held five different budget workshops overall to discuss finances. Originally staff planned on a projected revenue for the general fund of $13.3 million, as of May 30, the projected revenue is approximately $15 million.

This revenue increase comes from several different income sources including a 1.6-percent increase in solid waste equaling $74,295 more than originally projected.

A 6.3-percent increase in the marina rates, fine adjustments, appropriation of fund balance, and a planning remodeling fee calculation change.

The biggest revenue increases came from the increase in parking rates and the increase in Freeman Park visitor fees.

Last week Town Council held a budget workshop where one of the topics of discussion was the increase of these rates.

Non-resident parking decals are now $75; they give the purchaser one full parking season at Carolina Beach. Last week town staff suggested increasing the rates for these passes by $25 to $100.  Now it appears staff is proposing doubling the rate for these passes to $150 annually.

Freeman Park rates were also discussed during the budget workshop. Currently Freeman Park annual passes cost $150. Last week council discussed increasing the cost to $175. The latest suggestion is to raise those prices to $200.

Early purchases of park passes now cost $75. Council considered raising the price to $100, but now is considering increasing the, to $150.

The public hearing begins 6:30 p.m. June 12 at Town Hall.


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