Kids looking to practice their moves at the Stotzky Park Skate Park in Riverhead may soon have to ante up a fee.
According to town recreation superintendent Ray Coyne, initially skateboarding fee had been taken out of the town's budget for park and recreation.
"But," he said, "we did a study and the skate park is losing a signficant amount of money -- close to $24,000 a year."
Although the park has been free to Riverhead residents for some time, over the past three years, Coyne said non-resident membership has dropped approximately 75 percent.
"We think kids are coming in with resident parents and getting in for free," he said.
Coyne did research on other skate parks in the area, including Greenport, Brookhaven, and Southampton Town.
Southampton, he said, charged a $30 annual fee, similar to what was charged in the past at Stotzky Park, while Greenport and Brookhaven don't charge.
"But they don't staff their skate parks," Coyne said. "There's good and bad to that."
Coyne asked the board if they'd prefer to keep the skate park admission-free or go back to charging.
Councilman John Dunleavy asked if skate park staffers knew what streets are actually in Riverhead, and which are in Riverside and Flanders, and part of Southampton Town.
Coyne said the staff has lists; many kids have student identification from Riverhead schools or are attending with another, resident's parent.
"The revenue there is just slipping through," Councilman George Gabrielsen said.
Coyne said he and his staff recommended charging $30 per year or not manning the skate park.
The board agreed to charging a $15 annual fee for residents of Riverhead Town, and a $100 annual fee for non-residents.
Residents would pay $2 for a single session and non-residents would be charged $5 for a single session.
The board is poised to vote on the change at their next town board meeting.