BRIGHTON BEACH, NY (PIX11)—In Brooklyn's Brighton Beach parking spaces are disappearing rapidly, leaving residents at the mercy of the only existing permit-parking lot.
Constant calls into the Neighborhood Association are proof to President Pat Singer that her community is in need and they are all saying the same thing.
Residents informed her that their one and only permit parking lot is about to jack up its quarterly rate an additional $200.
The reason parking is such a problem has to do with the beach and boardwalk. Residents say visitors come and take up all the on-street parking so for those who live in Brighton Beach, they have no choice but to purchase a permit.
"This is robbery, one-hundred-percent," said longtime resident Toby (who didn't want us to use his last name).
Born and raised in Brighton Beach, Toby says, the lot is the only option for residents who own cars.
"It is hard, very hard. That is why we pay the money here," he said.
The new rate hike has him giving his permit back. "I'm going to get in my car and go look for a garage somewhere else," said Toby.
However, somewhere else means the next neighborhood over. The closest garage is Coney Island. While some folks can't physically make that long of a walk home, Toby says that's exactly what he's going to do because he simply cannot afford his old lot.
"I'm self-employed. I have children and family but it is hard," said Toby.
Singer agrees. "We're talking about the working class, people on fixed incomes, all around, it is a pretty lousy situation."
The economy has the government hurting too and transportation leaders say these new rates are a result of the city's new budget.
Singer doesn't buy it.
"I know they need the revenue, I know they're in trouble but this is not the answer," said Singer.