Fees at Dix Hills Park, seen here in 2020, and other recreational...

Fees at Dix Hills Park, seen here in 2020, and other recreational facilities in Huntington have gone up. Credit: Barry Sloan

A hike in fees at recreational facilities across Huntington Town will generate revenue that will go toward hiring additional staff for venues including parks and beaches, officials said Friday.

The increase in fees — ranging from 50 cents to $50 for various activities — is expected to help generate revenue to hire more staff and pay competitive wages for town workers including rink attendants, lifeguards, camp counselors and other staff, town officials said. The new fees took effect earlier this month.

Town officials said they did not know how much revenue the fee increases will add to the budget. 

Cable Todd Jamison, the town's director of Parks and Recreation, said over the last year he has been forced to reduce a few programs, and end lifeguard services and day camp sessions early because of staffing shortages, which he attributed to the town not paying competitive wages. 

“The big reason to raise prices was so we can hire and compete in the workplace,” Jamison said.

“No one wants to work for $9 and $11 an hour anymore,” Jamison said, referring to the rates the town was paying its seasonal workers. 

Jamison said Huntington has not raised fees in years. 

The hike in fees affect town facilities such as the Dix Hills Park, which features a golf course, an outdoor Olympic-size pool and two indoor ice rinks. Public ice skating session admissions increased from $6 to $7 for a child with a recreation card and from $7 to $9.50 for an adult with a recreation card. Seniors with a recreational card will continue to pay $5 but those without the card will pay $10 instead of $9. Prices for those activities had not been raised since 2010, town documents show.

A family pool pass is now $300. The cost had been $250 since 2002, according to town documents.

Dix Hills resident Sharon Szokoli said at first she was concerned about how the increases would impact her finances. She has two children who have used the ice rink weekly for ice hockey and figure skating for years.

“But now that it’s been clarified why they are raising prices, I get it,” she said, adding that the community has to do its part to help "pay people more money to work here."

Town Supervisor Ed Smyth said though the increases are “unremarkable,” he added it’s never a good time to raise fees.

“But eventually it gets to a point where we have no choice,” he said.

Town board member Sal Ferro, co-sponsor of the resolution, said what the town was charging was outdated.

“We never want to raise fees, but if you are not bringing in revenue with user fees you’re also hurting residents by covering the loss by raising taxes,” he said.

Summer camp complaints . . . Suffolk double dippers . . . LI's best BBQ Credit: Newsday

Global tech disruption's effect on LI . . . Trump's big speech . . . Suffolk double dippers . . . LI's best BBQ

Summer camp complaints . . . Suffolk double dippers . . . LI's best BBQ Credit: Newsday

Global tech disruption's effect on LI . . . Trump's big speech . . . Suffolk double dippers . . . LI's best BBQ

Latest videos

YOU'VE BEEN SELECTED

FOR OUR BEST OFFER ONLY 25¢ for 5 months

Unlimited Digital Access.

cancel anytime.