Ron LeeAug 3, 2017, 11:34 amAug 4, 2017, 10:02 am

Bayville businesses hurting after $50 beach parking fee drives away non-residents

Restaurants say profits are low this year compared to last year when there was no cost to park

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BAYVILLE — It's a summertime battle between making money and saving money and now the Town of Oyster Bay says it is looking to help several restaurants and other businesses along Bayville Avenue by passing a measure that would ensure that at least some of the people who park for free in front of local businesses don't just park here to go to the beach.

A restaurant owner who did not want his face shown on camera says he fears that he'll have to shut his restaurant down after more than 50 years in business if sales don't pick up. He adds that the Town of Oyster Bay’s plan to designate 10 parking spots for shoppers and diners doesn't address the bigger problem that needs to be addressed.

"...If you come here during the day, during lunch time, you'll see they come in and they turn around… Who's going to pay $50, even if I want to go to the beach?" said the restauranteur.

The reason some business owners feel this wasn't an issue last summer is because a year ago, beachgoers were able to park in the actual lot for Charles Ransom Beach at no cost due to the town not staffing the booth where a parking fee would have been collected.

That led to a steady flow of beachgoers who not only went to the beach, but who also visited the restaurants and shops. This summer, however, the town says it is enforcing the fee, mostly due to the increase in non-residents who had been using the beach but had not been paying for parking.

Costas Savvas, the owner of Souvlaki Place told FiOS1 News earlier this week that switch has led to lower than expected profits all around.

"Nobody's parking, you can see the cars go in and come right out. They're not even making money off of it. If they want to do it, they should do it hourly. It's not going to hurt us and they're going to make some money. Right now, they don't make money and it's hurting us," Savvas says.

So, just how much are beachgoers saving by choosing to not park in the official lot for the beach?

If you're a resident without a seasonal parking pass, the fee is $20 a day. Non-residents are charged $50 on weekdays and $60 on weekends and holidays.

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