The state of California has raised day-use and camping fees at state parks to help offset budget cuts during the state’s financial crisis. The fee increases vary, ranging from $2 to $5 for day-use parking and from $10 to $21 per night for camping. Reservations made before the increase went into effect August 17 will be honored at the original price.
The fee increases are not enough to make the parks self-supporting. To do that, park officials said, would require such steep increases that people would be priced out of the park system. Even with the increases, the state will still be closing some parks. The parks department is seeking support from cities, counties, corporations and nonprofit organizations to sponsor or operate parks. Park managers also have been reducing services, closing portions of parks and reducing operating hours to cope with budget reductions.