- Written by Susanna Sheehan
- Published: 28 May 2014
Town Manager Rene Read wants to take a fresh look at Duxbury beach access and he has enlisted the help of the Beach Committee to examine if other types of stickers, such as daily or weekly passes, might work.
Last week, Read met with the Beach Committee to ask for their help in looking into beach sticker fees and structures in other towns, especially those with summer tourists.
Read, who used to work on Cape Cod, asked the committee to gather information about the possibility of selling daily, weekly, biweekly or monthly stickers or passes to the over- sand part of Duxbury beach.
“I know that other communities — Falmouth, Sandwich, Mashpee and Harwich — all offer stickers at a non-seasonal rate,” Read said. “I though it might be a good idea to get comparative data to see if it was something we might consider here.”
One reason Read is ask- ing for this information is that last year he learned that many of the people who requested a one-time refund for their beach sticker fee after the over-sand beach area was closed for a month were vacationers who came for two weeks at a time.
“They come here for two weeks and they’re going to lay out $325 for a beach sticker, and they’re wondering if they can get a different price structure,” Read said. “Maybe it’s a good idea. Maybe it’s 200 bucks for two weeks. I don’t know what it is. Maybe it isn’t at all, but I think it’s something we have to look at.”
Read suggested looking at the over-sand section as a parking lot instead of a place for season pass holders. He said he receives multiple calls from people each month looking to access Duxbury beach for a day or two. He liked the idea of selling more shorter-length beach stickers to attain more revenue.
“It’s tremendous the people who want to go out there for a day,” Read said. “Image if it was $25 a day and they want 10 days. That’s $250... or maybe there’s a two week over-sand sticker. You might tap into a revenue stream that you never saw.”
“With a two week sticker, you might change the dynamic” on the beach, said Bill Hartigan of the Gurnet-Saquish Association.
Beach committee member Sara Fargo, who is also a member of the Duxbury Beach Reservation, wondered how the shorter-term stickers could be enforced. Read said he wasn’t sure yet, but he also suggested taking a look at selling out-of-towners stickers to the resident’s parking lot.
“Maybe there’s a better way,” he said. “Maybe we rethink the whole thing.”
Fargo did not support opening the resident’s parking lot to others.
“I would want the Duxbury resident lot reserved for residents only,” Fargo said.