Metered parking will be $4 an hour this year in Rehoboth Beach. (Wikimedia Commons photo by Dough4872)

You’ll probably pay more for beach parking this year

Katie KazimirCulture, Government, Headlines

Metered parking will be $4 an hour this year in Rehoboth Beach. (Wikimedia Commons photo by Dough4872)

Metered parking will be $4 an hour this year in Rehoboth Beach. (Wikimedia Commons photo by Dough4872)

Rehoboth, Dewey and Bethany beaches are increasing parking rates this summer, with Rehoboth and Dewey officials citing increased health insurance costs and other expenses.

Parking rates for Lewes and Fenwick Island rates will not change.

Here’s the situation in each Sussex County beach community.

Rehoboth Beach parking

Citing a $4.4 million deficit in the city’s proposed $37 million budget for fiscal 2025, the Rehoboth Beach Board of Commissioners voted last month to raise the hourly parking meter rate, parking permit fees and rental tax rate.

“These increases are necessary to ensure that we have a highly functioning, appropriately resourced government that provides the outstanding level of service our residents and visitors have come to expect,” said Mayor Stan Mills.

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“We are attempting to spread the burden of these increases among city stakeholders, so that both our visitors and our residents are vested in and investing in Rehoboth’s future,” he said.

The 2025 budget is $2 million more than the current fiscal year, due largely to raises for city staff and a 17% increase in state health insurance costs.

“We don’t take our fiscal responsibility nor our responsibility to our team lightly. We have to invest in our most valuable assets, our employees,” he said.

“(Maintaining Rehoboth’s) reputation as a clean, safe and welcoming destination requires significant capital investment as well,” he said.

Permits for parking will be up about 30%.

Commissioners increased the gross receipts rental tax rate from 6% to 7%, effective on all rental agreements entered into on or after April 1.

Commissioners are expected to consider increases to the property tax rate and wastewater rates at their March 15 meeting.

Paid parking runs from May 15 to Sept. 15.

  • Hourly: Up $1, to $4.
  • Daily: $25
  • Three-day weekend: $60
  • Weekly: $120
  • Seasonal from Aug. 1 (non-transferable): $150
  • Seasonal from Aug. 1 (transferable): $165
  • Seasonal (non-transferable): $295
  • Seasonal (transferable): $325
  • Scooter (seasonal): $55

Dewey Beach

Dewey Beach’s new Town Hall and police station and the state’s 17 % increase in health insurance costs were reasons City Manager Bill Zolper cited for increasing parking fees.

“obody wants to pay more for anything, but we’re kind of stuck. This is our only real way to raise revenue,” he said.

While Rehoboth can increase rental and property taxes to meet fiscal demands, Dewey has no property tax, and the town charter locks rental taxes in at 3%.

Health insurance costs hit hard on the town budget, Zolper said.

Dewe has 27 full time employees, 13 of which are police not on state insurance.

The town pays 100% of the health insurance cost for the remaining 14 and their family members.

Most towns pay 80% of employee insurance costs and cover 20% for their families, he said.

“To run the town and provide services we have to increase revenue somewhere,” Zolper said. Parking is really the only way to increase revenue in town.”

The following are effective rates from May 15 through Sept. 15:

  • Hourly: Up 50 cents, to $3.50
  • Daily: Up $5, to $30
  • Weekend: Up $10, to $55
  • Weekly (eight days): Up $20, to $100
  • Seasonal parking permit: Up $50 to $300
  • Property owners seasonal: $175
  • Business owners in Dewey Beach: $175
  • Business owners licensed in the town: $225
  • Employees of Dewey Beach businesses: $225.

Bethany Beach

Bethany Beach rates are in May 15 through Sept. 15.

  • Hourly: Up 50 cents, to $3
  • Daily permits: Up $5, to $40
  • Three-day permits: Up $15, to $90
  • Weekly permits: Up $35, to $210.

Fenwick Island

Parking rates in Fenwick Island will remain the same as last year and are in effect May 15 to Sept. 15.

Property owners and residents are required to use a blue hang-tag permit, while non-residents must park only on side streets.

  • Hourly: $3
  • Daily: $25
  • >Weekly: $150
  • Seasonal: $500
  • Replace lost permit: $200
  • Additional blue permits: $500


Lewes rates will remain the same as last season, with paid parking beginning May 1.

  • Downtown hourly: $1.50
  • Beach hourly: $2.50

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