Dewey officials aim to streamline parking for visitors

Owners must license, clean up after dogs
April 16, 2021

Story Location:
105 Rodney Avenue
Dewey Beach  Delaware  19971
United States

With the summer season soon to begin, Dewey Beach officials want to ensure all visitors know town parking and dog regulations so they can avoid getting tickets.

The paid parking season runs from May 15 to Sept. 15 each year, Town Manager Bill Zolper said, and Dewey’s code enforcement officers are ready to answer the ins and outs of how and where to legally park.

“Our code enforcers are ambassadors for the town,” Zolper said. “We want people and families to come here and have a good time while at the same time understanding town rules and regulations.”

Parking and Code Enforcement Supervisor Merle Leonard said the town is upgrading the parking system currently used by code enforcement to integrate the purchase of virtual parking permits. 

In addition to buying permits through the ParkMobile app, Leonard said, users will be able to create an account in the new T2 system and purchase virtual permits online before they come to town for vacation. 

The car license plate becomes the permit, or users can opt for a hang tag for seasonal permits for now, she said.

“We want to make it as easy and convenient as possible,” Leonard said, adding the new contactless system will be up and running around the end of June. Hourly parking and one-day parking permits can be paid via ParkMobile or kiosk, she said.

ParkMobile will also have a new system, Leonard said. New signs throughout town will have the parking zone number listed. Visitors can scan a QR code on the sign and create a guest account, download the Parkmobile app or text a displayed phone number to pay to park. When entering their license plate number into ParkMobile, users must be sure to add the entire license plate number, including all letters and numbers, Leonard said. If users are unsure of the exact license plate number, they can check their car registration, she added. 

Free parking nights will continue from 5 to 11 p.m., Monday through Wednesday, Zolper said. Rehoboth Beach-Dewey Beach Chamber of Commerce will host Monday movies and Wednesday bonfires on the beach.

Parking lines will be painted on town streets in late April to early May, Zolper said. Town code allows for one 20-foot-wide driveway or two 10-foot-wide driveways in front of homes; the remaining frontage is public parking, he said. Cars parked illegally will be towed, and cars parked according to code will not be towed.

Also new this year, Zolper said, is that one designated parking space will be reserved at the end of each beachside street for lifeguards only from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Other vehicles parked there during those designated times will be towed, he said.

The fine for unauthorized parking in a handicapped space is $100. Depending on the offense, all other parking violations begin at $30 or $65, and fines rise incrementally if not paid after seven days, 20 and 30 days.

Dogs must be licensed in Dewey Beach

Dewey Beach is very proud to be a dog-friendly town, Zolper said, and it is one of the few beaches on the East Coast to allow dogs off the leash while under the control and watchful eye of their owners.

From May 15 through Sept. 15, dogs are allowed on the beach before 9:30 a.m. and after 5:30 p.m. From Sept. 16 through May 14, dogs are allowed on the beach anytime from 5:30 a.m. to 1 a.m.

This year, Zolper said, code enforcers will drive a Gator on the beach to check that dogs are licensed. Dog owners will be informed about the need for a license, which can be purchased at the kiosk or town hall. 

Three-day dog licenses are $5, eight-day licenses are $10 and lifetime permits are $35. Soon, code enforcers will have readers on their phone, allowing them to sell licenses right on the beach; if owners don’t have their wallets, they can use Apple Pay or Google Pay, Leonard said. Dog owners can present their email receipt at town hall to pick up a tag; lifetime permits can also be mailed, she said. 

The town supplies free waste bags at the end of each street, Zolper said, and beach ambassadors will also have them on hand. Owners will be fined for not picking up after their dogs, he said. The fine for the first offense is $95, and $200 for each subsequent offense. 

The amount of dog waste left on the beach seems to have doubled, Zolper said, and burying it doesn’t clean it up; children find it when they dig and play in the sand.

“We really want people to clean up after their dogs, and we will be enforcing it on the beach,” Zolper said.

Seasonal parking permits and dog licenses are now on sale. For more information, go to

Subscribe to the Daily Newsletter