East Hampton Updates Parking, Beach Access Laws

Richard Lewin
The East Hampton Town Board changed laws regarding parking and beach access permits March 7. Independent/Richard Lewin

The East Hampton Town Board, on March 7, unanimously passed a series of changes to the town code regarding beach parking, with possible fees for full-time residents in the future. The same night, the board also approved, by a vote of 4-1, amendments to the portion of the code regarding beach access permits for vehicles. David Lys was the sole board member to vote no.

Parking permits will continue to be issued to owners of cars whose registration has a town address, as well as those registered with addresses in East Hampton Village and the parts of Sag Harbor Village that lie within the boundaries of East Hampton Town, as well as to owners of property in the same areas.

The amended law opens the door to fees being charged for residential parking permits. Currently, such permits are issued for free. The words “free of charge” were stricken from the town code concerning residential parking permits in the amended and approved bill. Instead, the town board is now given the authority to set fees for full-time residents. In addition, all such permits will expire at the end of two five-year windows, years ending in either 0 or 5.

Town Supervisor Peter Van Scoyoc said Monday that there are no plans to institute parking permit fees for residents.

Full-time renters in East Hampton Town also can obtain residential parking permits, by showing their signed lease. That appears to be covered by new language added to the code which reads, “If necessary, the Town Clerk may consider for review other documentation that demonstrates residency.”

In amending the code regarding parking, the town board also attempted to clear up regulations regarding parking passes for hotels and motels, as well as for the temporary renting guests of condominiums and co-ops.

Establishments that act as hotels and motels will be able to obtain one guest parking pass per room rented. Owners and managers of condominiums and co-ops that rent out to transient guests will be covered by the same rules. The parking passes will bear the name of the establishment to which they were issued. The establishments are allowed to charge guests for the passes, as long as they file a fee table with the town clerk’s office.

Owners of co-ops will also be able to obtain residential parking permits.

Parking passes are not available to those for tenants renting out houses for the season. Instead, those tenants would need to obtain a non-residential parking permit, valid until the end of the year.

As with parking permits for residents, permits that allow vehicles on the beach for residents will now expire in the same five-year window. Those permits will remain free. The fee for non-residential beach access permits is no longer fixed at $275. Instead, the amount will be set by the town board, so the price may well be going up.

All vehicles granted beach access passes are already required to carry a tow rope or chain, a jack, and a spare tire. In addition, if you drive on the beach in the Town of East Hampton, you must be carrying a fire extinguisher.

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