Parking meters hit the beach in West Haven

(WTNH / Tina Detelj)

WEST HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — Something new in West Haven this summer isn’t making waves with beach-goers.

“I just saw a lot of people pissed off about this,” said Bernice Fernandez, a beach-goer.

“I’m not too happy with it,” said Torah Jones, another beach-goer. “I’ve been coming here a long time — never had to pay at all.”

That changes this summer with new parking meter kiosks now installed at several of the parking lots that serve West Haven beaches.

“I’ve heard some complaints,” said Anne Lee who owns an ice cream/food truck called “Just Chilling”. “It’s a change. It takes a while for people to get used to it.”

It now costs $1.25 an hour to park, $12 to park all day. It’s free for residents if they have a tag on their windshield that the city sent out in the mail. If they don’t have it, they get a fine on their windshield instead.

“They get a hundred dollar ticket. They’re not usually too happy,” Anne said. “But, it is what it is. It’s pay to park and if you don’t pay, then you pay!”

Anne and others say they understand the city’s need to create another source of revenue in these tough financial times for many towns across Connecticut.

But…..

“But I think for the public, especially on holidays, it should be available for us at all times without paying,” Torah said.

There was good news for many beach-goers in one of the parking lots today — the brand new kiosk there wasn’t working.

“It’s not working!” Bernice said, with a smile.

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