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Old 08-08-2020, 11:17 PM   #1
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New Oregon State Park Fees

News release // Oregon Parks and Recreation Department // FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE // Release date: August 7, 2020


Media contacts:
Chris Havel, chris.havel@oregon.gov, 503-986-0722
Jo Niehaus, jo.niehaus@oregon.gov, 503-580-9210


Oregon state parks adds temporary nonresident camping surcharge

Salem, Ore To encourage local recreation and provide funding to operate the Oregon State Park system, the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) will add a nonresident surcharge to new campsite reservations and first-come, first-served campers starting Monday, August 10. The change does not affect existing reservations or people currently camping in a state park.

The increase will add up to 30% to the nightly cost to camp in a state park for nonresidents. Including lodging tax, the average cost for a full-service RV site is currently $33 per night, and starting August 10, will increase to an average of $42 for nonresidents making new reservations, or arriving without a reservation. The average tent rate is currently $19 per night and will increase to $23 for nonresidents.

The surcharge will remain in effect the rest of 2020. A decision about rates for 2021 will be made this autumn.

We love serving all people, no matter where they live, says Lisa Sumption, Oregon Parks and Recreation Department Director. Even so, this temporary change is needed to remind people to stay as close to home as possible while enjoying the outdoors, and to provide much-needed support for the Oregon state park system, which faces a projected $22 million shortfall between now and June 2021.

In addition to encouraging recreation close to home, the surcharge could generate up to $500,000 through the end of the year to hire staff and pay for cleaning supplies and other park operations.

For more information, visit https://stateparks.oregon.gov.
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Old 08-09-2020, 11:20 AM   #2
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Out of State Camping Upcharge

Michigan State Parks have been charging out of state residents a permanent upcharge for several years.

Perhaps there are other states that have been, or are now doing the same?
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Old 08-09-2020, 12:05 PM   #3
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This is an absolute first for the Oregon State Park system. Breaks my heart for out of state travelers. I truly hope it's temporary.


I know Washington State Parks has priced me out of camping in the state using their parks years ago. Between the reservation fee plus the out-of-state fee, it was costing me $16 more per night. The last time was more than six years ago.
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Old 08-09-2020, 01:44 PM   #4
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This is an absolute first for the Oregon State Park system. Breaks my heart for out of state travelers. I truly hope it's temporary.


I know Washington State Parks has priced me out of camping in the state using their parks years ago. Between the reservation fee plus the out-of-state fee, it was costing me $16 more per night. The last time was more than six years ago.
And Washington isn't adding that much for non-residents compared to Oregon- though I agree the reservation fees are a. lot. But as a temporary measure I think it is a great idea.
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Old 08-09-2020, 01:46 PM   #5
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When we made our long West Coast trip a few years back we purposely avoided camping in Washington State Parks . Their fee structure screamed STAY AWAY to us . Unfortunately our State of Wisconsin has followed the same path .
Some states want tourism and some don’t , we tend to go where we’re wanted!
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Old 08-09-2020, 01:49 PM   #6
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New York started charging out of staters an extra $5. I think the last time I stayed in a NY campground it was $28.. Vermont charges an extra $2 along with a $2 premium site fee, a buck for your dog, and quarter operated showers. That said , I doubt Vermont costs more than $24/ night even if you live it up. And yes, they make more money on the showers in the ladies room.. I asked.
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Old 08-09-2020, 03:07 PM   #7
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The surcharge will remain in effect the rest of 2020. A decision about rates for 2021 will be made this autumn.

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Old 08-09-2020, 04:33 PM   #8
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Taxes

States charge RV private parks taxes that benefit State parks=How fair is that? In WA State they include $5 for state parks on your license fees and you must decline in order to avoid the charge. Private RV parks at a disadvantage.
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Old 08-09-2020, 04:37 PM   #9
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States charge RV private parks taxes that will benefit State parks=How fair is that?
Eminently!
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Old 08-09-2020, 05:19 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Donna D. View Post
This is an absolute first for the Oregon State Park system. Breaks my heart for out of state travelers. I truly hope it's temporary.


I know Washington State Parks has priced me out of camping in the state using their parks years ago. Between the reservation fee plus the out-of-state fee, it was costing me $16 more per night. The last time was more than six years ago.
I live in Warshington and feel the same way. I might camp in a state park if friends are there, but anymore it just seems a hassle. The last time, I made a reservation and it was lost. Luckily, the park was not full.

I've learned to conserve water better, and have solar panels, so I'll stay more in Forest Service campgrounds or NPS campgrounds. I also have a seKriT list of alternatives here and there.

I will miss visiting Oregon.
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Old 08-09-2020, 05:44 PM   #11
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Many private campgrounds owe their existence to nearby public parks, lands, and tourist sites. Seems fair that visitors support the local infrastructure.

Growth and protectionism swing back and forth in alternating cycles. States choosing to protect their parks and resources for their own citizens is just one manifestation of a broader swing toward protectionism that started long before COVID.

Nothing new under the sun.

Arizona still has the welcome mat out. We stayed in an in-state private campground this week, and there were plenty of license plates from all over the US. And yes, we paid about $5/day in state and local taxes.
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Old 08-19-2020, 03:17 PM   #12
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"Many private campgrounds owe their existence to nearby public parks, lands, and tourist sites. Seems fair that visitors support the local infrastructure."

When you stay at one of those Private campground you are paying for all of the infrastructure and everything else that is around by spending any money in the state or area on the taxes and gas and food and everything else you spend money on. How do you think small towns and areas survive that don't have that stuff. Does it cost the State more for a non-resident to use those services?

Just another way to get extra money without any extra expense on the part of the state. We as non-residents have no say in the matter but to chose to stay in non-state owned parks or not in that state at all, then the state get $.00 money spent by non-residents and then you residents will have to make up the difference as we visit tourist friendly states.

As someone who travels the USA I choose to only stay in State campgrounds that don't charge extra to non-residents when possible. It is just the way for a State to charge non-residents extra because they can. Those that do charge extra will all end up just like California in everything they do. National Parks and Forest and BLM lands are first choice as we like boondocking as opposed to in your face overpriced campgrounds. We will leave them for those that need them.

Pack it in, Pack it out.
America, land of the Free/
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Old 08-19-2020, 03:46 PM   #13
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One of the reasons we no longer visit Florida besides their climate are their tourist taxes . We were quoted a price in the mid $40’s for a Florida Campsite but by the time they added in State , Local , County , city , municipal . sales , tourist , lodging , camping ,and general taxes the bill was up close to $70
If they want to fund their state off the backs of tourists then they can find another patsy . Florida would have to pay me if they ever wanted me to return!!

If you want to camp at nice State Parks with reasonable camping & reservation fees and not a bunch of tacked on costs , try Iowa
4 nights camping with reservation fees came to under $70 plus the Iowa weather and people are an added bonus .
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Old 08-19-2020, 07:47 PM   #14
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Oregon state parks fee increase for out of staters

As an out of stater who likes to camp in my birth place state of Oregon, I have no problem with the increase even if it ends up being permanent. That is much better solution than having state parks shut down or reduce their season even more. The fees are still lower than most private parks or other places to stay. Look at California Park rates and what you get if you want to see high and crazy.

I've only seen a one time fee of $5.00 for the whole stay, not per night from an Oregon friend who just made reservations in a Washington state park.

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Old 08-19-2020, 09:22 PM   #15
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When was the last time a State tax was temporary? At least in Oregon there are lots of USFS/BLM campgrounds. Not so much in WA- and their 3 tier B.S. is just that. CA- well they're a poster child for lots of failed policies in my almost 50 years as a resident. Most notably in the last 10 years. Who's in charge? Yeah.
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Old 08-19-2020, 09:47 PM   #16
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Arizona state parks are also very reasonable and no hidden fees. However, many local governments add B&B taxes on common tourist services like restaurants, hotels, and private campgrounds.

If its stopping folks from coming, Im sure not noticing it. Some stay for almost half the year and pay no income taxes, so it seems fair enough. Residents pay them, too.
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Old 08-19-2020, 09:54 PM   #17
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I think it is reasonable for states to charge different amounts since the price of the park comes from state income taxes, even if the upkeep comes from fees and other things. Florida has decided that it will forgo state income tax and put all revenue into the form of fees from those who use them. (Why a lot of PGA Pros live in Florida) For many residents in Florida, they retired there and have no "income" to tax so it works better for the state the way they do it. When camping in MN or Wisc I have to pay a fee for out of state, or at least I did the last time I used state campgrounds. But even then, I don't mind, since they have a lot more than many other states. I know that not everyone sees things the same, but I figure to enjoy the outdoors, and see the things I see, it is worth whatever I pay. If I can't afford it, then I shouldn't be there. IMHO
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Old 08-20-2020, 09:53 AM   #18
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willing to pay for using our public lands

I totally agree with charging non-residents more - just like I feel our National Parks should have a higher entrance fee for those visiting from other countries ( which they DO NOT have at this time). Our state taxes include fees for our state parks - and even then, here in idaho, we have to buy a Idaho State Park Passport to not incur the $5 per vehicle, per day motor vehicle entry fee (MVEF) assessed at every Idaho State Park (which we buy every year for both of our vehicles.) We willingly pay non-resident fees whenever we camp in other states - we need to contribute to the upkeep of all of our public lands.
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Old 08-20-2020, 12:56 PM   #19
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How much is a reasonable fee to tack on for non residents ?
At some point the fees approach the level of being prohibitive
If sites at State campgrounds are sitting empty / idle how much to you stand to gain by pricing non residents out of the market .
Basic economics says at a certain price point there is price resistance and you lose customers ( think tourists)
I’d rather see my State Park campgrounds full with out of state campers then sitting empty with no one covering the overhead costs
If the goal is to fund your state parks off of only tourists why not raise the non resident camping fees to a $1000 / night — problem solved ?

Following the logic of having non residents pay for everything the next step is to start making non residents pay a toll if they drive on your roads or drink your water or breath your air or look at your scenery
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Old 08-20-2020, 01:04 PM   #20
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How much is a reasonable fee to tack on for non residents ?
At some point the fees approach the level of being prohibitive
If sites at State campgrounds are sitting empty / idle how much to you stand to gain by pricing non residents out of the market .
Basic economics says at a certain price point there is price resistance and you lose customers ( think tourists)
Id rather see my State Park campgrounds full with out of state campers then sitting empty with no one covering the overhead costs
If the goal is to fund your state parks off of only tourists why not raise the non resident camping fees to a $1000 / night problem solved ?

Following the logic of having non residents pay for everything the next step is to start making non residents pay a toll if they drive on your roads or drink your water or breath your air or look at your scenery
I don't know if you have been to any of the Oregon coast state parks, but during the summer they are completely filled, at least they have been when I've tried to make late reservations. I'd hate to see them attempt to hit the price break point where people would stop reserving; I suspect it would be out of sight!
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