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Editorial: National Park Fees

Editorial: National park fee increase is wrong!

Western Outdoor NewsPublished: Dec 06, 2017

Due to underfunding by politicians for decades, maintenance on the National Parks in the United States has been neglected to the point where the bill now stands at $11.3 billion dollars! Note, that is just the backlog for repairs, not improvements.

Rather than find funding for those repairs in the federal budget of trillions of dollars wasted by Washington, D.C., every year, your elected representatives want to pass the cost on to the general public!


The Park Service is actually proposing entry fees of up to $70 per private vehicle, $50 per motorcycle and $30 per person at some parks. We have seldom, if ever, heard of anything so idiotic! The National Parks are the property of the citizens of the United States, to be maintained by the federal government, not by visitors.


And what visitors can afford $70 to drive mom, dad, buddy and sis to Yosemite for the day or weekend? Only the wealthy, for sure, leaving the vast majority of Americans without the ability to visit our National Parks! And even if the fee were raised to that outrageous amount, the revenue would only bring in a fraction of the amount needed for repairs.


This increase would make the National Parks — protected for all Americans to experience — unaffordable for many American families to visit.


The solution to the parks’ repair needs should fall to Congress, and cannot and should not be shouldered by its visitors. There is a bill, the National Park Service Legacy Act, pending in Congress that addresses the National Park Service maintenance backlog and it deserves the Department of the Interior’s support. This bipartisan legislation would provide a more substantial — and sustainable — investment in our parks.


Send your message now: Tell the administration to work with Congress to come up with stable, sensible, long-term solutions to address the maintenance backlog — not put the burden on park visitors. Go to https://secure.npca.org/site/SPageNavigator/pepcfee.html.




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