The Cape Elizabeth town council is considering a proposal to charge for parking at the popular lighthouse to help cover rising maintenance costs that have always been paid by Cape Elizabeth taxpayers.

The proposal would leave more than 100 parking spots on the outer edge of the park free. The remaining  270 or so parking spots would be "pay and display" spots according to an article on NECN.com.

Town Manager Matthew Sturgis said visitation to the park has gone up 40% in the last 10 years with around 260,000 visitors last season, 60% of which are from out of state.

The newly structured parking would be $2.00 an hour with a 2 hour minimum. If you stay longer than 2 hours the rate drops hourly.

It's now up to the town councilors to decide whether they should send the issue to an ordinance committee, or put the question on the ballot for Cape Elizabeth voters to decide. NECN.com says two previous ballot questions on this issue have failed, but Sturgis thinks people are coming around to the idea.