Yosemite National Park entrance fees quadrupled in 1997from the previous $5 per car to $20. The annualpass is now $40…up from the previous $15.

Yosemite National Park officials say those increased fees will go togood use. Among a list of high priorities: an aging shuttle bussystem, a road system in dire need of repair, improved water andsewage systems and an upgraded ranger-led nature program. We are toldthat the $178 million dollars in flood damage will be addressedspecifically with flood recovery legislation in Washington.

Golden Age passes for senior citizens will stay at their present $10 ayear for admission to all national parks.

Previously, nearly all of the approximately $80 million collectedannually in entrance fees was returned to the U.S. Treasury’s GeneralFund. This new 3-year pilot program will allow Yosemite and otherparticipating national parks and forests to keep 80% of the additionalfunds raised.

$20 a carload to visit Yosemite? Proponents point out that a familyof 4 would pay at least $24 to see a first run movie…without thecokes & popcorn. Opponents point out that the quadrupled entrance feecould well cut off this magnificent wonderland to a sizable portion ofthe public.

What do you think? Are Yosemite’s entrance fees at $20 per car toohigh? Would $10 have been more reasonable? Should they be rolled backto $5?

We invite your feedback to this issue: Would you please e-mail us atthis special address? We’ll forward responses to politicos, parkofficialdom, the media and post the results right here on theinternet’s #1 resource for information on Yosemite and the surroundingGold Country. Stay tuned.

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