The National Park Service is seeking public comment on proposed fee increases at Hovenweep and Natural Bridges national monuments.
The park service proposes to increase park entrance fees at Natural Bridges National Monument on Jan. 1. The increases would comply with the 2014 National Park Service standard pricing model for Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act fees, according to a park service news release on Wednesday.
The revenue will be used for deferred maintenance and other visitor service projects, the release said.
The park service also plans to reinstate entrance fees at Hovenweep National Monument, using the same model.
Natural Bridges rates would increase to $15 per vehicle, up from $10; to $7 per person, up from $5; and to $10 per motorcycle, up from $5. The Southeast Utah National Parks annual pass would remain at $50.Hovenweep fees would be $15 per vehicle, $7 per person, $10 per motorcycle and $50 for the Southeast Utah National Parks annual pass. The park service attributed the fee hike to costs associated with a 60 percent increase in visitations since 2014, and said the revenue will be used for deferred maintenance and visitor services.Camping fees at Natural Bridges and Hovenweep would increase to $15 from March 1 through Oct. 31, up from $10. Camping fees Nov. 1 through Feb. 28 would remain at $10.The park service attributed the increase to rising costs of supplies and labor. Camping fees have remained at $10 since at least 1998, though costs including supplies and labor have risen, the park service said.
The park service added that studies are underway to ensure that park campground rates do not undercut business at private campgrounds.
Recent projects completed with the fees include rehabilitation of the Owachomo and Sipapu trails at Natural Bridges, as well as new benches, paint and carpet for the visitors center.
At Hovenweep, fees were used to rehabilitate the Holly trail and to replace a water well and restroom gutters.