Rhode Island’s reduced beach parking fees could continue

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Lower rates for parking at Rhode Island’s state beaches could continue for another summer.

Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo has told the state Department of Environmental Management that she wants to extend last year’s reduced rates through this year’s season, which begins May 13.

The state budget passed by legislators and signed by Raimondo last June cut beach fees by almost half for the remainder of last year’s season. Rhode Island residents paid $6 for weekdays, $7 for weekends and $30 for the season. Non-residents paid double.

A public notice from the environmental agency says a proposal to maintain those reduced rates would cost the state $780,000 a year, but have positive effects in increasing tourism and helping people enjoy state beaches who would otherwise have a hard time affording them.

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