Maricopa County Parks and Recreation Department fees rise April 1

Some fees at Maricopa County regional parks will rise April 1. (Photo courtesy of Maricopa County Parks and Recreation Department)

The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors has unanimously approved adjustments to a variety of fees at regional parks, including those for day-use entry, camping and special use applications.

In addition to the adjustments, the Maricopa County Parks and Recreation Department sought approval to add a new service – a hike/bike/equestrian annual pass aimed at park visitors who hike or ride directly into the park without using the parking and staging areas.

“The increase to the selected fees are necessary for us to be able to continue providing quality outdoor recreation experiences to visitors who use the parks and conservation areas,” R.J. Cardin, parks and recreation director, stated in a release. “Inflation, although relatively modest, continues to increase and is displayed in what the department pays for goods and services, including basic utilities, equipment, insurance, technology, maintenance and repair charges.”

It has been more than 11 years since the park entry fee was last raised and four years since camping fees were last increased.

Park entry fees, for example, will increase to $7, up from $6. It does not affect the Spur Cross Conservation Area and Hassayampa River Preserve. Camping fees at developed sites will rise to $32, a $2 increase.

Before the request to adjust fees reached the supervisors for consideration, the department presented market study comparisons, public survey results, and the proposed fee adjustments to the parks commission for discussion and approval.

The board conducted a public hearing on the increases, but no public requests to speak were entered, the release stated.

For more details of the fee increases, which go into effect on April 1, visit www.maricopacountyparks.net/fees/.

The Apache Junction Independent is mailed each month to 35,000 homes.

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