A number of Larne councillors were angered by plans announced by the DOE to introduce car parking charges in October 1991.
Five car parks were set to be affected, at Agnew Street, Circular Road, Exchange Road, Fairhill and Narrow Gauge Road.
Charges ranged from 20p for up to two hours parking to £1.50 for over four hours.
The DOE said that the charges were being introduced to encourage people who parked all day to use the free car parks and leave spaces free nearest the town centre for shoppers.
They said that the charges would bring Larne into line with other towns including Ballymena, Antrim and Carrickfergus.
Councillors accused the DOE of introducing charges at a time when Larne was reeling from economic recession, as charges were set to be brought in shortly after the closure of the GEC Alsthom plant.
MP Roy Beggs said it was “ludicrous” that at a time when the Council was making serious efforts to try and regenerate Larne, the DOE had chosen to impose parking charges.
Alderman Jack McKee said it would be a sad day when the charges were introduced.