This August 5, 2015 photo shows tourists walking out to Glacier Point with a background view of Half Dome at Yosemite National Park.

The National Park Service is proposing fee increases at 17 of the system’s most popular sites, including Yosemite and Sequoia & Kings Canyon Parks, to $70 per private vehicle during peak season. The money gathered would help pay for park maintenance and infrastructure improvements, with 80 percent remaining in the park where it is collected. The fee hike comes after the Trump administration announced plans earlier this year to slash the National Park Service’s budget by almost 13 percent. The Park Service is currently accepting public comment on its website.

Guests:

  • Neal Desai, Pacific Region field director, National Parks Conservation Association
  • Nina Roberts, professor of Department of Recreation, Parks and Tourism at San Francisco State University
  • Jeremy Barnum, acting chief of public affairs, National Park Service

More Information:

National Park Service Proposes Hiking Entry Fee for Yosemite, Popular Parks 26 October,2017Michael Krasny

  • jakeleone

    They take all the trees and they put them in a tree museum. And they make all the people pay big old fee just to see’em. (paraphrasing Joni Mitchel)

  • Noelle

    Why am I not surprised? The National Park Service has been underfunded for years.

  • Curious

    Hiking fees???? Where is the report on the fact that it was Hillary colluding with the Russians, not Trump????

    • marte48

      yeah, because Putin so loved Hillary and Bill Clinton as to want to help them all he could.

      • Curious

        Well, he did pay them over $150 million and the facts are the facts. You need to extricate yourself from the false narrative that has now been exposed.

        • Livre DeVisage

          Curious is a serial troll here. Ignoring him / her / it is the best strategy..

    • Livre DeVisage

      Curious is a serial troll here. Ignoring him / her / it is the best strategy.

    • Gene K.

      Get your own show: Your daily obsession with Hillary (who isn’t president, the man child is.) instead of the topic at hand is boring.

      • Curious

        The man child left last years after 8 years of unprecedented disaster. If I am paid $500 million a year by taxpayers, like NPR, I will certainly get my own show.

        • Whamadoodle

          You’re certainly paid handsomely. Nobody crams “what about Hillary?” into every single discussion, even one about national parks and other stuff having ZERO to do with her or with Russian attacks on us, unless you’re getting paid to do so. No one is fooled.

          • Curious

            When Trump has two scoops of ice cream after dinner, Krasny does a show on it the next day. When it is shown that it was Hillary and not Trump that was colluding with the Russians, we are served up these filler pieces. Apparently, you are fooled.

  • Another Mike

    Surely we pay enough in taxes to be able to fund the parks. Why not charge foreign visitors more — California’s iconic parks are full of Germans, etc., during the summer.

    • Curious

      Like in-state tuition.

  • Ben Rawner

    Would that be across the board or at its highest volume location? For instance Yosemite is so full at times, that it almost feels unnatural to go there. This could lower the total amount of visitors to a
    More manageable level.

  • marte48

    If people want tax cuts, we can expect extra fees to pop up everywhere.

    • Curious

      Maybe people should actually start paying taxes?

  • marte48

    Didn’t the park service find missing millions last year? (2012)

    • RealityCheck SantaCruz

      That was California State Parks, not National Parks.

  • Alo Moj

    I’d say make the tax cut for the wealthy a little less extensive and save some money for the parks, especially to have programs for low income youth to experience parks.

    • Another Mike

      Any family with a fourth grader can go to any park for free. (Where they charge per vehicle.)

      • Livre DeVisage

        Huh???

        • Another Mike
          • Livre DeVisage

            Know where I can borrow a 4th grader?

            Seriously, that is a nice program, but the number of Americans who have a 4th grader in any given year is a pretty small % of the total. Even a family with three kids has a total of three years in which they can take advantage of this over the time from the birth of the oldest child until the youngest reaches fifth grade, then that’s it.

            Useful fact to know, but far from a general solution. Plus I wouldn’t be even slightly surprised if this would be the next thing on the chopping block.

          • Curious

            You’ll qualify next year if they promote you.

          • Another Mike

            Curious, did you notice the snarky comments from a previous program against you were deleted?

          • Curious

            I did not. I am just blown away that someone is so unhinged. I once posted that someone’s tin foil hat was on too tight and the comment was deleted in minutes.

          • Livre DeVisage

            Curious is a serial troll here. Ignoring him / her / it is the best strategy…….

          • Gene K.

            Curious also has comments he makes that are not related to the topic deleted.

          • Curious

            When crucially important topics are ignored by the MSM, because they do not conform to the left wing narrative, what is the solution?

          • Curious
          • Livre DeVisage

            Curious is a serial troll here. Ignoring him / her / it is the best strategy….

          • Another Mike

            Right, but the original point was having programs to allow low income youth to experience parks. So there is a window of opportunity allowing youth and their families to experience parks.

          • RealityCheck SantaCruz

            The going rate for 4th grader rental just went up $30. 🙂

          • Livre DeVisage

            Except for the obvious safety issues, this could be a good money-earning opportunity for 4th graders. At $70 entry, they could just stand outside the Park entrances and offer to ride in with groups for, say, $35. That’s a 50% discount for the car they ride in, and $35 in their pockets. Then they just walk out and repeat the process. If it’s limited to once per day, they’d have to go home and come back the next day to repeat the process. But of course in today’s sick world, 4th graders hopping in strangers’ cars is probably not the best idea 😉

  • John

    Couldn’t they find a couple of billion from the bloated defense budget?

    • Curious

      Or welfare? Or from stopping welfare to millions of illegals?

      • pastramiboy

        which is pennies compared to the bloated defense budget. $400 toilet seat anyone?

  • ursosarctos

    The parks should be paid for by progressive taxation not by expensive entry fees unaffordable to many Americans. The NPS takes such a tiny share of the federal budget. It should be a simple thing to keep it funded without putting the burden on working people while reducing access.

  • Another Mike

    I guess the caller doesn’t realize that Yosemite can be a day trip from the Bay Area, not a vacation costing thousands of dollars.

  • marte48

    the wealthy take trips to Yosemite much more than poor people do.

    • pastramiboy

      not true-poor climbers have been climbing in the valley and Toulumne since the 40s-its cheaper tp play in the valley than it is to go to disney world.

  • sstanley

    We go to Yosemite twice a year….the people we meet and talk to are from Europe or Australia!

    • Another Mike

      Right, an extra $40 means nothing to people who have spent thousands of dollars per person to get there.

    • Livre DeVisage

      And they are typically spending thousands of dollars IN AMERICA. Every step we take to discourage them simply makes it more likely they will take their money and go elsewhere . . . as if our current Federal government wasn’t discouraging enough on so many levels.

      • Curious

        Yes, Somalian refugees are clambering at the gate to hike Yosemite.

        • Livre DeVisage

          Curious is a serial troll here. Ignoring him / her / it is the best strategy…

        • Another Mike

          The fellow who died protecting his wife from falling rocks last month was from Cardiff, Wales. The couple had spent three weeks in Yosemite.

          • Curious

            What are the odds? A woman injured in the LV shooting lost her house in the Napa fires. One has to wonder.

      • Mttamer

        Should we as visitors from the US expect to pay more in the UK for, say, the Tower of London or in Paris for the Eiffel Tower?

        • Another Mike

          Depends on how much the taxpayer subsidizes those attractions.

          Further, the UK — a country with the same surface area as Oregon — has nothing to rival the Grand Canyon, for example.

        • Livre DeVisage

          It’s really a “marketing” question. We certainly can charge foreigners more than we charge taxpayers, but at some point you start to discourage the foreign tourists from visiting at all, or you shorten the average length of a visit, and with that goes all the money they spend in the U.S., as well as the sales & hotel taxes, and of course the Park entry fees that they DO pay, even if the prices weren’t raised. It’s easy (and from the right-wing xeonphobes, expected) to point at a single fee and say: “U.S. Taxpayers are subsidizing foreign tourists.” But look at the larger picture and you realize that foreign tourists pump millions into the tourism sector. It’s funny how they believe that throwing a tax windfall at billionaires will somehow stimulate the economy (it won’t . . . well, it might stimulate the SWISS economy), bu they can’t grasp that being welcoming to thousands of overseas tourists WILL do so (it will, and indeed it already DOES).

  • Livre DeVisage

    This is simply yet another effort to take benefits from ordinary Americans to provide a trillion-dollar tax windfall for Trump and his fellow billionaires — no more, no less. Why pretend there is any deeper analysis than that from an Administration whose every policy amounts to “Robin Hood in reverse?”

  • Jen H

    Yes, $70 for seven days is reasonable. But for some people, For families of very limited means, $70 for one day is less so.

  • giulia

    This price hike will negatively impact the parks ‘ surrounding communities income from visitors.

    • Another Mike

      No, I think it will affect mostly day trippers, who will have packed a lunch for their trip.

      • Gene K.

        Like low income families who can’t afford to pay the exorbitant food prices in the valley.

        • Curious

          I don’t think low income families hike the national parks and it is not the entrance fee preventing it.

  • Mttamer

    These parks are our lands – they belong to us. We pay entrance fees and taxes to support them. Past administrations and congresses have failed to budget the necessary funds for upkeep, and maintenance deferred becomes more expensive when the can is kicked down the road as deterioration never stops.

    The tax cut will not only bring a a benefit to the wealthy, fees for national government services will be imposed and increased. We have seen that play out at the state and local levels during the past 10 years.

    The fees for senior and annual national park passes increased eightfold just 2 months ago.

  • Jen H

    Yes, charge higher fees for international visitors! I know, from my own international visitors, that if they’ve managed to pay for the international travel, they can afford, and will be prepared, to pay, a lot for the once-in-a-lifetime experience of a place such as Yosemite. (And more would stay there, if only it the system for finding and booking accommodation there were less obstructive!)

  • John

    Those who spend there weekends at Mar-a-Lago or their private clubs have no pride in the national parks, and care not what it may cost for those to whom it is a marginally high expense. It is a regressive tax, while the rich get their cut, and the emoluments clause is ignored by the courts and the politicians, who are see themselves as a privileged and separate socioeconomic class, not mere citizens. Meanwhile the NPS thinks they are responsible for business development and increasing tourism and dysfunctional crowding. Jefferson said we must not encumber future generations, and that we need a revolution every twenty years. Long since forgotten, like tears in rain.

    • Curious

      Barry doubled our national debt.

  • Curious

    Instead of giving $500 million to PBS every year, give it to the National Park Service.

  • RealityCheck SantaCruz

    Krasny needs to make up his mind. is it going to disproportionately impact “people of color”, or are the only people who go to the national parks “old white people”? It can’t be both.

  • bruno_mirakuru_

    yeah, because Putin so loved Hillary and Bill Clinton as to want to help them all he could.

  • Robert McCallum

    One should examine all water leases and easements etc. Who is using public property for private interest and profit?

  • anastay007

    The entry fee at the South gate should cover plenty. No one should “own” access to the trails. Good heavens, what next?

Host

Michael Krasny

Michael Krasny, PhD, has been in broadcast journalism since 1983. He was with ABC in both radio and television and migrated to public broadcasting in 1993. He has been Professor of English at San Francisco State University and also taught at Stanford, the University of San Francisco and the University of California, as well as in the Fulbright International Institutes. A veteran interviewer for the nationally broadcast City Arts and Lectures, he is the author of a number of books, including “Off Mike: A Memoir of Talk Radio and Literary Life” (Stanford University Press) “Spiritual Envy” (New World); “Sound Ideas” (with M.E. Sokolik/ McGraw-Hill); “Let There Be Laughter” (Harper-Collins) as well as the twenty-four lecture series in DVD, audio and book, “Short Story Masterpieces” (The Teaching Company). He has interviewed many of the world’s leading political, cultural, literary, science and technology figures, as well as major figures from the world of entertainment. He is the recipient of many awards and honors including the S.Y. Agnon Medal for Intellectual Achievement; The Eugene Block Award for Human Rights Journalism; the James Madison Freedom of Information Award; the Excellence in Journalism Award from the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association; Career Achievement Award from the Society of Professional Journalists and an award from the Radio and Television News Directors Association. He holds a B.A. (cum laude) and M.A. from Ohio University and a PhD from the University of Wisconsin.

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