Monday, September 27, 2010

More Parks Fees, Please!

More Taxes? Nah. More Fees? Why The Heck Not?

Nassau County Exec Ed Mangano has promised "no new taxes" in his budget proposal (where have we heard that before?), but nary a word has been uttered (at least not in public) about new or increased fees.

Well, our good friend and purveyor of pride in our public parks, Bruce Piel of PARCnassau, has discovered a plethora of fee increases for Parks and Recreation fees alone.

A tax by any other name (fee?) is still a tax, isn't it?

We wonder what other wallet-lighteners lurk in the County's proposed 2011 budget, hidden from sight, buried among the gratuitous (if not largely disingenuous) verbage* of cutting waste and reducing spending, ready to bite?
- - -
Well its Friday afternoon (9/24) and Nassau Parks did a last minute submission to increase more parks fees. Does anyone see a pattern here? Fortunately, unlike parks administration, not all civil servants leave early on Fridays and they continue to process and distribute these submissions in a timely manner allowing us to pass them on to you.

Parks is updating their 2011 budget proposal includes the following:

An Alcohol Beverage permit will go from $45 to $50. (Enforcement will probably remain at zero)
The Eisenhower batting cage will go from $3 a token to $5 (a 66% increase)
Nickerson Entry Fee will go from $8 per vehicle to $10. (a 25% increase)
Nickerson seasonal sticker will go from $80 per vehicle to $90. ( a 12.5% increase)
Nickerson Cabanas will go from $2,100 per season to $2,520 (a $420 increase)
Nickerson Cabinette will go from $700 to $765 per season ( a 13% increase)
Rifle & Pistol Range will go from $7 to $10 per entry (a 30% increase)
Leisure Passes will go from $25 to $30 per person ( a 20% increase)
Eisenhower miniature golf will go from $7 to $9 (a 22% incease)

By the way, since we told the legislature this past Monday, that parks was including fees for Hempstead Harbor Beach Park and Whitney Pond Park and that those parks were given to the Town of North Hempstead in 2007, they wisely deleted them with this amendment. Who is in charge?

Have your fees been increased yet? Hang on, let's see what next Friday's surprise will be. If your fees have increased, feel free to let your legislator know you aren't happy about it.

Note: The Legislative Financial Committee will meet on October 8, 2010 at 10:00 am to discuss the proposed county budget including the unjustified camouflage taxes disguised as fee increases submitted by parks. It wouldn't hurt to use that committee to practice for the final hearing on October 18th.

Bruce Piel
Park Advocacy & Recreation Council of Nassau
246 Twin Lane East
Wantagh, NY 11793
(516) 783-8378

*A deliberate misspelling and mispronunciation of verbiage that assimilates it to the word "garbage".

1 comment:

  1. Hello. I am a cabana holder at Nickerson and I just recieved the renewal letter for next season. The price you quoted above for the summer would be welcomed at this point. The new cabana fee for a summer at Nickerson is now $3400!!!! This is a 62% increase from last summer. I just got off the phone with the Parks Commissioners office and I am so disappointed that Nassau County has decided to use the 400 cabana renters at Nickerson to try and dig the county out of debt. That won't even put a dent in it, but may ruin many peoples summer this year.