Evanston’s Human Services Committee Monday night recommended City Council approval of a new set of rules for operation of the city’s reopened dog beach and rejected a resident’s suggestion to reduce dog beach fees.

Mike Meyers, a 1st Ward resident, suggested the fees should be cut to match those of nearby communities like Wilmette.

The Wilmette Park District charges its residents $45 for their first dog and $9 for each additional dog to access the beach. For non-residents, the Wilmette fee is $229 for a first dog and $77 for each additional dog.

Evanston now charges residents $75 per dog and non-residents $200 per dog.

Parks Director Audrey Thompson said that the last time the dog beach was open, in 2018, the city charged residents $60 per dog and the that given inflation since then, the Parks and Recreation Board was fine with raising the fee to $75 this year.

She added that the city this year has added dog beach access and other lakefront activities to the city’s recreation scholarship program. It gives residents who apply at community centers the opportunity to qualify for a 50% discount on fees.

Ald. Bobby Burns (5th) asked how much it costs to maintain the dog beach. Thompson said she didn’t have recent information about that since the beach has been closed so long.

The full list of dog beach amendments to the city code is included in the committee’s meeting packet.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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