Why Pay Fees?
As the number of visitors to parks continues to climb due to the popularity of these national treasures, government funding available for necessities such as road and building repairs, campground maintenance, visitor protection, resource protection and other services has not kept pace with demand. In 1996, to address these needs, Congress allowed the U.S. Department of the Interior to implement an experiment called the Recreational Fee Demonstration Program in three of its agencies-the National Park Service, the Bureau of Land Management, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The experimental program also includes the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Forest Service. The program directs funds collected from park visitors towards the maintenance of the facilities they were utilizing.