Paying Dearly to Park

East Hampton officials could set aside a few permits and conduct an auction.

   You know it is going to be a crazy summer when the New York news media start up with their East Hampton stories in April. Scratch that — March, when coverage of the final 2012 sales of the village’s $325 beach-parking permits went big.
    Curbed Hamptons, a Web-only venture, was first out of the gate with news of a record early sellout. The New York Post upped the ante on April 9 by obtaining village records naming the lucky 2,900 who scored the strictly limited nonresident stickers, a few movie stars and famous rock ’n’ rollers among them. Larry Cantwell, the village administrator, told The Post that he had taken hundreds of calls from people about the then no-longer-available permits. “They tell me they’ll pay whatever we want for them,” he said.
    Reading these accounts, it seems the village is leaving chips on the table, so to speak. Next year, East Hampton officials could set aside a few permits and conduct an auction once those remaining are gone, with the proceeds earmarked for public works and preservation.
    If celebrities, congressmen, and federal judges, as Mr. Cantwell told The Post, think the sky’s the limit when it comes to parking at Georgica, Main, Wiborg’s, Egypt, and Two Mile Hollow, why not help separate them from their money if there is good to be done with it?