Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele announced Tuesday that he will abandon plans to implement paid parking in Milwaukee County Parks this spring.
"Today, I’m asking the County Board to discontinue the Pay to Park program that was included in the 2018 budget, and use instead the County’s 'rainy day' contingency fund to fully fund our Parks Department for this year," Abele said in a news release. "We asked for public input in order to better understand how people feel about this new dedicated revenue stream to the parks system."
However, Abele also indicated that "this is a is a short-term solution to a long-term problem" and that new revenue will be needed to support the parks budget in 2019 and beyond.
"Aside from rainy day funds, other difficult options we had to consider were increasing the vehicle registration fee $5 per year or dramatic, widespread closures across our Parks system," Abele continued. "With no good options, I’m asking the County Board for this temporary fix, while we work together to plan for other alternatives in next year’s budget."
News/Talk 1130 WISN first revealed last month the secretive steps the County had been taking to implement paid parking, and after the story aired, outrage over the proposal was swift and overwhelming. Hundreds of opponents attended a public meeting at the Mitchell Park Domes last week.