Stearns Park remained a topic of discussion throughout last night's City Council meeting, beginning with public comment. Some expressed that the beach clean up is worthy because they willing to donate to support, more than the city would receive from parking fees. Members of the parks department stood up in support of the possible parking fees, citing the unfair cost to only Ludington taxpayers to maintain a beach that all others have the opportunity to enjoy free of charge. The parks committee has recommended to not charge for parking at stearns park.
Councillor Michael Krauch encouraged the council to continue brainstorming and seeking ideas to expense growth but did not feel that parking fees would accomplish the goals set by the finance committees. Councillor Dick Rathsack expressed his disappointment at the committee's decision on abandon the possible parking fee idea. Councillor Kathy Wincheski emphasised the positive feedback received from other communities regarding possible parking fees. City Manager John Shay acknowledged the criticism that income projections would be based upon assumptions, as the number of beach visitors have never been tracked. He also encouraged communication from the public to the council regarding ways the council could increase income to ensure the budget remains fiscally stable in the upcoming years.