Minister for Environmental Protection and Regional Development Māris Sprindžuks (United List) said in an interview on Latvian Radio that the ministry would assess the necessity of the Jūrmala decision.
"The new municipal law allows Jūrmala to regulate its entry fee policy. Binding rules should be assessed. Jūrmala hasn't consulted me. I would like to see the justification, […] why this is needed all year, not just in the hot months that are the fiscal objective,” said Sprindžuks.
According to the Jūrmala CIty Council, the aim of the regulations is to reduce vehicle traffic intensity in the area of Jūrmala and to promote the use of more environmentally friendly modes of transport.
The rules also provide for the possibility of purchasing a pass for a longer period, such as a seven-day pass for €10, 30-day pass for €31, or 365-day pass for €180.
30% to 90% discounts are intended for employees of individual industries, multi-child families, people studying in Jūrmala, employees of the Jūrmala municipal authorities and others.
The funds collected from the payment of the fee are included in the basic budget of the city municipality and will be used for the creation of an environment favorable to tourism and the development of the resort, environmental protection, protection of cultural monuments, as well as for the provision of public order and security, as stated in the annotation of the regulations.
Last year, the city budget from entry fees amounted to €2.9 million, as well as €1.5 million in fines for not purchasing a pass.