PARKING: Full House Pressures Positive Movement On Paid Parking At Beach Commission Meeting

It was a full house at Tuesday's beach commission meeting, with over 20 people signing up to speak in front of the commission, almost all who voiced complete opposition to the paid parking plan as it stands.

There was some good news though...

Commissioners (yes even rich obrien) unanimously agreed at Tuesday's commission meeting, that they would not be opposed to residents (at least on the beach) parking for free in new designated paid parking areas.

In a recent My 904 Rant & Rave poll of over 1,000 people, locals overwhelmingly said they would be for paid parking, as long as residents were still able to park for free.

Another thing commissioners touched on was the need to offer free or discounted parking to employees of beach establishments, or have employers pay for the cost of parking passes of some sort, so that employees don't have to take on the burden of possibly hundreds of dollars a week being taken out of their pockets just to park for work.

Some commissioners added that if county residents do not get free parking, they should be at least given parking at a reduced rate from those visiting from out of town.

At the meeting, commissioners also revealed that St. Johns County plans to roll out paid parking at the pier by this coming summer. The Beach Commission did table discussions on paid parking for now, but say they want to be ready to roll out paid parking of some sort, in synchronicity with the county this summer.

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