Back in February, East Haven increased fines for parking violations near Cosey Beach and now that the summer season nears officials are reminding beach-goers that they will face a bigger fine if they park in the wrong spot by the beach.
The Town Council approved an ordinance on Feb. 3 increasing the fine for parking in designated no-parking zones from $10 to $100 in effort to reduce "parking woes" at the beach this summer after a slew of complaints last year, according to a release from the mayor's office.
The town also moved no-parking signs to the south side of Cosey Beach Avenue.
The decision marks the first revision to the parking fine structure since 1985, officials said.
"In response to concerns raised by residents, I directed our Police Commission to review and amend the regulations regarding beach parking," East Haven Mayor Joe Maturo Jr. previously said in a statement. "In addition to strategically relocating no-parking signs, the Commission and Town Council have now increased the fine for parking in designated no-parking zones from $10 dollars to $100 dollars."
Already people in the area have noticed a difference.
“A lot better, a lot better,” says Susan Gonnelly.
Out of town beachgoers are forced to park on streets because nearby parking lots are reserved for residents with beach permits.
That meant in previous summers neighbors say cars were blocking driveways and it even made it difficult for emergency responders to get through.
“It was pretty tough because there were cars on both sides of the street and if two cars were coming down you just had to wait,” says Gonnelly.
Saturday late afternoon was a slow time at the beach and there no cars parked illegally.
A park worker says police have been patrolling and have had to previously issue tickets.
It remains to be seen once the beach season gets busier if people still follow the rules with the threat of the increased fine.