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Parking Charges in Ohio State Parks

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Procraftboats21, Jan 25, 2005.

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  1. Procraftboats21

    Procraftboats21 Original OGF Member


    Parks Pride Pass to help restore and maintain
    Ohio’s award-winning park system

    per motor vehicle
    $5 resident
    $6 non-resident
    $4 Golden Buckeye
    per motor vehicle
    $25 resident*
    $30 non-resident
    $20 Golden Buckeye
    *a second annual pass for residents costs $20
    Beginning in May, visitors to Ohio State Parks will be required to display Parks Pride Passes on their motor vehicles, under rules proposed today by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR).

    The rules, filed with the legislature’s Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review (JCARR), will allow Ohio State Parks to collect $5 for each daily parking pass. An annual pass, good for unlimited park visits for 12 months from the date of purchase, will cost $25. JCARR will have 90 days to review and approve the proposed rules.

    If the rules are approved, Ohio will become the 45th state to enact a user fee in its park system.

    Out-of-state visitors will pay $6 daily or $30 annually per vehicle for a pass, and Golden Buckeye Card holders $4 daily and $20 annually. A majority of monies generated from the sale of passes will be returned to the park where they are collected. The balance will go into a special fund to support day-to-day operations and maintenance in all 74 state parks.

    “By displaying Parks Pride Passes, visitors will show their personal support for Ohio’s award-winning state park system,” said ODNR Director Sam Speck. “It is their way of saying: ‘We appreciate the value Ohio State Parks offer and we want to help protect, restore and maintain our parks for families today and into the future.’”

    Introduction of the Parks Pride Pass marks a milestone in the 56-year history of Ohio State Parks. While general revenue funds and user fees generated from camping, boat dock rentals and concessionaire contracts have traditionally supported the cost of operating the state parks, those sources are no longer sufficient to ensure the standard of excellence for which Ohio State Parks are known, according to Speck.

    “Continued reductions will place our wonderful state park heritage at risk and threaten the reputation of our parks as wholesome, family-oriented destinations,” he said.

    Faced with increasingly difficult budget challenges and cutbacks in state funding over the last five years, the park system has responded with significant reductions in staffing, maintenance and visitor services. For example, Ohio State Parks employed 607 full-time staff members in 2000, but cut that number to 490 employees in 2004. Only 42 of the system’s 74 parks now have on-site managers.

    “In recent years, more and more of the state’s budget has been allocated to Ohio’s other needs. Meanwhile, despite staff reductions and other belt-tightening, the costs associated with maintaining and operating state park facilities have steadily increased.

    The Parks Pride Pass will help fill that gap, ensuring that Ohio families will continue to enjoy the level of service they have come to know in their state parks,” Speck said.

    Because each of Ohio’s state parks is unique in character and layout, administration of the Parks Pride Pass will vary from facility to facility. At the busiest locations, park staff will have passes available for motorists as they enter designated parking areas.

    At less-busy parks and times, motorists will use an “honor system” drop box to obtain a pass. Parking passes will not be necessary for walk-in visitors.

    Annual passes will be available for purchase at most Ohio State offices, campgrounds and lodges, at selected retail locations within individual parks, online, or by calling 1-866-OHIOPARKS (1-866-644-6727), later this spring after the proposed rule becomes effective.

    Ohio State Parks will hold a public hearing at 1 p.m. on Saturday, February 12, at the Ohio Historical Center, Interstate 71 and 17th Ave., in Columbus to accept public comment on the proposed rules.

    Ohio State Parks are the third most-visited state park system in the country. Only California and New York average more visitors each year to their state parks. In 1997, Ohio State Parks became the first state park system to receive the Gold Medal for Excellence from the National Recreation and Park Association as the top state park system in the country.
  2. So what does that mean for the fisherman? In order to launch a boat we gotta have the pass? What about the various pull offs around the lakes? Do we have to have the pass to park there and fish? Is the pass only needed for the paved lots? Personally I think its a bad idea, but would like to hear some more information on the subject.

  3. Chuck P.

    Chuck P. Here We Go Steelers

    Give me a break..... Pay to "drive through" a park? Pay to park and walk, talk, fish, etc?

    I think NOT... :mad:
  4. flathunter

    flathunter Mellons mentor

    Yes , Yes, yes..About time!..The only reason I am for this is I hope it keeps the scum of society out of our state parks, maybe it will if they have to pay to be there.
  5. I agree with flathunter. I dont really like the idea but am keeping an open mind, if after a year I dont see cleaner parks and more enforcement then I would be mad about it. I think we need to give the state a chance before we get upset about the fees.
  6. catking

    catking Banned

    I'm for it. Like stated , almost all states have this. And Ohio ranks 3rd in the most visitors. I just worry about the people who don't have the extra cash laying around and like to take their kids to the parks as a day of fun. I think they should have some type of guide lines in place for this...... CATKING
  7. If you can afford to log on here and b*^^%) about the charges than you can afford the charges...give me a break...
    Catking, I hope your not advocating park access welfare ;) this is a nominal fee folks...besides it doesn't cover county/city parks...
    This reminds me of the arguements that happen when they raise liscense fees - a waste of brainpower...if you cant "afford" $15-20 for a liscense than you should not fish - IT IS A LEISURE ACTIVITY AND A PRIVILEDGE NOT A NECCESSITY...I think the free liscense for seniors is a joke as well...if anyone should get a free liscense it should be families w children on welfare - at least they "need" the "free" food.
    What's next - free passes to Cedar Point? (same thing as fishing or parks - theyre all recreation)
    Enough already.....
  8. I have no complaints with paying for parking If, and that is a big If,the money is spent on the improvement of the parks.
    As for free parking to people on welfare, HUH.
  9. Master Angler is right. If you can't afford the fee you have no business being at the parks. Leave all the recreation to those who have worked hard for a good living and thereby deserve the priviledges afforded them.

    Master Anglican, are you English? That's how it worked over there and now ask an Englishman about his hunting opportunities.

    I pay for hunting and fishing licenses. I don't feel it is necessary to add another tax to the fees I already pay. Those of us with sportsman's licenses should be exempt from this fee. There are plenty of dog walkers, joggers, mountain bikers, bird watchers, picnicers, and gay men using our state parks for free and they are the ones who should be paying an access fee.

    P.S. The poor folks on this board just might be logging in from the public library.
  10. ncraft150

    ncraft150 Buckeye-Basser

    Here's a question. Will one $25 pass cover all the state parks or only the one it is issued in? If it doesn't cover all of them we need to stop this from happening. I would be more willing to support it if it covered all the parks. Other problems I have are once they pass this it will NEVER be free again and they will raise the rates when ever they feel like it. The next thing you will see is gates at the entrance and a fence around the park and everyone paying to get it. Once it starts it will only get worse for the future. Besides our state has allready proved they can't mange the money so why would I want to give them more? If I pay for a fishing or hunting license it should come with a free pass. I disagree with some of you guys who say if you can't afford it you shouldn't be there. What if your company lays you off tomorrow and you can't find a job until next December. You have now become one of the less fortunate that can not afford it. Thats one of the biggest problems with todays society. Nobody cares about anyone else but themselfs anymore. I can think of 100 reason to support this and 100 reasons not to. It is just a shame it has to come to this.
  11. This topic has a huge thread from a few weeks ago. I was going to post there, but since this one is starting fresh...I'll put it here.
    Below is a letter of reply to me from Jon A. Husted, Speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives:
    January 26, 2005

    Dear Mr. Guyton:
    I received your e-mail concerning the proposed $5 vehicle fee at Ohio’s state parks. I appreciate your time and concern for this issue.

    Unfortunately, the General Assembly has no say in whether or not the Ohio Department of Natural Resources recommends the “Parks Pride Pass” fee. However, the proposal will be under review by the Joint Commission on Agency Rule Review, or JCARR, in the near future.

    JCARR consists of five state representatives and five state senators and reviews proposed new, amended, and rescinded rules by state agencies. JCARR is expected to hold a hearing regarding this proposal on March 7, 2005. There will be a public hearing on February 12, 2005, at 1:00 p.m. at the Ohio Historical Society (Interstate 71 and 17th Avenue) regarding the Parks Pride Pass. This will be an opportunity for members of the public to hear from the Department of Natural Resources about the proposal and get a chance to voice their views on the proposal directly to the department. Also know that as discussions continue about this proposed fee I will keep your views in mind.

    Again, thank you for your concern. If I can be of further assistance please contact my office.


    Jon A. Husted
    Ohio House of Representatives

    I have asked for the names of the 5 senators and the 5 representatives that will serve on the JCARR review team. I'll post them if they get to me in time. My plan is to ask them to consider exemption for the active outdoorsmen that are already providing a good deal of support.

    I think everyone wants the parks to be funded like they used to be. But from what I have read on the topic, the State has really been cut back bad. Personally, I think the proper funding source is all Ohio residents. That might equate to 15 cents each.
  12. Hook N Book

    Hook N Book The Original Hot Rod Staff Member

    This topic has already been gone over. It's not about being able to afford the fee! It's more about double taxation! In the past, state parks were maintained with state/federal tax dollars, now all of the sudden there aren't any tax dollars to properly maintain them. So, where's the tax dollars going???? It's also about the lack of accountability from our Governor and state legislators.
    Here's a novel idea...eliminate all state taxes and then double or even triple the fees for all state licenses, add the park fee and any other fee that's affilated with a state agency. This way, at least I can elect to spend my dollars as I see fit.
    For those of you who feel this fee will rid the parks of illicit had better think again it just isn't going to happen. The assumption is, that since a fee is being charged, homosexuals won't spend the money to get into the parks. The authorities have tried for years to curtail their activities and it just keeps getting worst.
  13. crankus_maximus

    crankus_maximus Crankus Baitus Maximus

    Issue #1 - It's not about being able to afford it. It's about whether or not we should have to pay it at all. I already pay a LOT, like most of you all, and feel that another $25 is the straw that breaks the camels back. Enough is freakin enough already.

    Issue #2 - Spend the money better. The money that I already pay. If that would have been done, then we wouldn't need to pay the fee - NOT MATTER HOW MUCH.

    Issue #3 - Its NOT going to solve the pickle park problem. Its an HONOR system in most places. Those people have NO HONOR.

    Issue #4 - I DON'T LIKE IT!
  14. If ODNR or the state is hurting for money so bad, Can some one tell me why at ALum creek camp ground and other access areas (the marina) they are plowing and salting roads that are closed?
    I Live very near the marina and campground, at the campground 1/2 of the roads are closed from Oct. 15 untill March 15th. These roads are plowed and salted faster than most of the roads in the county. I don't get it. They to need to raise money my A$$!
  15. Just google up "ohio state park funding"......has been cut badly. Sounds like someone is up to no good at Alum. Blow the whistle man....someone will get barbecued for that waste.
  16. catking

    catking Banned

    I see where the last 4 or so post are coming from. They just keep coming back for more. No watch dog to see where our monies are already being spent. I never looked at it that way...........If this does pass, that would be alot of money to do what with??? They say it will go towards the parks, but which ONES ??? The lake erie region again ? What about down here in the SW. You all that live around here know we get jipped when it comes to the funds......... CATKING
  17. Procraftboats21

    Procraftboats21 Original OGF Member

    I talked with the park manager at Beaver Creek last night. He said if you bought the $5 dollar pass for the day you could visit all 74 parks with it that day and not have to buy a new one just because you went to a different park. The $25 dollar pass is good at anypark, anytime with unlimted use for the year.
  18. I like the idea of no taxes and a fee for everything...that way if you want to stay in your trailer and never leave you don't have to pay anything...

    ....seriously though - there are good points on all sides but the truth of the matter is that almost all other states do this...if you could be reasonably satisfied that the dollars will stay in the park system I can't see how you could be against it. As far as most of it going on the honor system that is laughable....

    ...finally, as per the earlier Englishman comment - no German- and yes rich people eat better than poor people - that extends to everything - as it should. Otherwise, why be rich. If you are poor and logging onto a fishing website at the library YOU NEED TO WORK MORE rather than surfing the web.
  19. crankus_maximus

    crankus_maximus Crankus Baitus Maximus

    Seriously though, I don't like being nickle and dimed to death - for anything. I already pay:

    - Hunting License with Deer tags and stamps for waterfowl and turkey
    - Fishing License
    - Boat Registration
    - Boat Trailer Registration
    - State Income Tax

    All of which a portion goes to the state, who has NOT - I Repeat - NOT spent my money in a fiscally responsible manner. Why should I give them more money to spend in a fiscally irresponsible manner? Thats like approving a big fat loan for somebody with a bad credit history. IT DOESN"T MAKE SENSE.

    I don't care if "EVERYONE ELSE IS DOING IT." That has never been an excuse for me, nor has it ever made sense.

    But seriously though, you can support it if you want.
  20. Hell, I'm rich. Why not charge everyone $5. Whats $5 to the Sheephead Master? $5 ain't s**t to me!

    Just Kidding. I really think the state is doing it to keep these groups of guys out of the parks who go there to love on each other in the bushes.
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