Oregon state parks could increase rates – or not

Camping at your favorite Oregon State Park campsite could become more expensive – or, in fact, less expensive – if a new Oregon Parks and Recreation Department proposal is adopted, reports central Oregon’s KTVZ.

The Parks Department said Aug. 1 that it is seeking public comment on proposed rules that would allow the agency to enact flexible rates within a set range for state park campsites. Under the rule, OPRD could charge a slightly higher rate at high-demand campgrounds and a lower rate at less-popular sites.

Lisa Sumption, OPRD director, said the proposed flexible rates would help the state parks system serve more people during peak camping season.

“Many of our parks have capacity, but people just don’t know about them,” Sumption said. “With the ability to vary campsite rates, we could entice people to explore new parks and hopefully discover their new favorite campground.”

Under the proposed rule change, OPRD would be able to adjust campsite rates for each park individually. Specific rates for each park or campsite would be posted on the state parks website and in the parks. Once a visitor makes a campsite reservation, their rate would not increase.

You can submit comments online or by email to: OPRD.publiccomment@oregon.gov . The deadline for making public comment is 5 p.m. on Sept. 10. After reviewing public comments, OPRD will present a final recommended rule for consideration by the Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission during its September 19 meeting.

Legislation passed during the 2017 session directed OPRD to enact rules governing a reasonable fee range.

##RVT858

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