Sonoma County Regional Parks Proposes Elimination of Coastal Trail Fees
February 25, 2016
Board of Supervisors Asked
to Discontinue Parking Charges at Sea Ranch, Bodega Bay public trails
The Sonoma County
Board of Supervisors on March
1 will consider eliminating day-use parking fees at six coastal access trails.
Sonoma County Regional Parks is asking for Board approval to rescind the
$7 fee immediately at the Pinnacle Gulch coastal access trail in Bodega Bay and
five public coastal access trails in The Sea Ranch.
After reviewing the
amenities and service levels at the trailheads, the county has determined fee
collection is inconsistent with the spirit of the California Coastal Act of
1976 and the Sonoma County Local Coastal Plan, both of which emphasize the
importance of public access to the coast.
Constitution guarantees maximum public access to the state’s coastline,” said
Supervisor Efren Carrillo, whose Fifth District includes the Sonoma Coast. “Our
responsibility is to protect and defend that right. Removing parking fees at
our beach trails is the correct thing to do.”
fees generate about $34,000 in annual revenue. That income helps offset the
cost of operating and maintaining the trails and parking lots, which include
restrooms, trash collection and some drinking fountains. Regional Parks is
asking the Board of Supervisors to make up the revenue loss by increasing the
county’s general fund contribution to the department.
Regional Parks will
continue to collect day-use parking fees at its beach parks (Doran Beach,
Westside, Stillwater Cove, and Gualala Point.) Unlike trailheads, the
parks include on-site staffing, campgrounds and major capital investments,
making fee collection consistent with Coastal Act and Local Coastal Plan
“We support the
hard-won legacy of coastal access established in Sonoma County,” said Regional
Parks Director Caryl Hart. “These coastal access trails lead to truly beautiful
and iconic landscapes, and we look forward to making them even easier to
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