Volusia County Raises Daily Beach Pass Rate From $10 To $20 For 2018

By on November 16, 2017 in WNDB News

Volusia County, FL – On Thursday, the Volusia County Council unanimously approved an increase in daily beach pass fees from $10 to $20 for 2018 and approved an amended $930,337.09 contract for beach toll services.

The Council anticipates that the higher daily beach pass rates would bring in an increase of approximately $4 million in revenue, which will go back to the beaches for ramps, toll workers, and litter collection services. The County will be able to use $4 from the sale of each daily and annual beach pass solely for capital beach improvements. The new fees would go into effect January 1.

“This will allow us to open up more beach ramps, more access for our citizens; so that’s what the purpose of this is and to keep the beach cleaner and just make the whole quality of the beach just very solid,” explained Council member Deborah Denys.

Along with the higher beach access rates, the period of free beach access for residents during December and January will be eliminated. Additionally, full-time college students from Bethune-Cookman, Embry-Riddle, and Stetson University will be able to purchase annual beach access passes for $25, the same rate as for Volusia County residents. Daytona State College (DSC) was not included in the group of colleges since the college does not have dormitories, and many DSC students have local residences, according to County staff.

Volusia County residents will still pay $25 for annual passes, and if they buy a daily pass instead of an annual pass, they will be able to apply that fee toward the annual pass as long as they keep the receipt. The beach pass fee for non-residents is $100.

“I do think that the annual people do understand this is a good value, but I can see where somebody would be upset with themselves if they paid $20 for something for one day when they could have spent $25 for the year, so we’re gonna try to take care of that,” says County Manager Jim Dinneen. He adds that there will be heightened opportunities to buy beach passes during the peak season and more information about the fees put out to the public.

The bulk of the money from the beach passes will go toward new beach access ramps. The County already approved the opening of seven additional ramps for area beaches last month, and the new ramps should be completely open by next Spring. “Regardless of the traffic we get, we are going to allow these ramps to be open the whole season, so that we get the information, so if you ever want to modify (the ramps), we’ll know how they’re being used,” said Dinneen.

The Council also approved an amended contract for beach toll collection services. In October of 2015, the Council approved a bid for toll collection services to Faneuil Inc. The newly approved, amended contract will extend the agreement with Faneuil through September 30, 2022, as opposed to September 30, 2020. The contract may be renewed for up to three years after that.

The cost of this amended toll services contract is $195,604.13 for a one-time start-up cost and $734,732.96 in annual fees. The cost includes 7 additional year-round beach toll booths, 33 additional peak season booths, and 12 additional off-season booths.

For earlier reporting on this story, click here.

Copyright Southern Stone Communications 2017.

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