Los Angeles County to increase fees for beachgoers

Los Angeles County supervisors are expected to approve a series of fee increases Tuesday across several popular beaches in order to attempt to reduce what officials describe as a large deficit in beach services.

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The county is operating at a $20 million deficit when it comes to beach maintenance, county spokeswoman Carol Baker told the Los Angeles Times. “It’s like an amusement park, and it’s open every day of the year,” Baker said. “The cost of maintaining the beach goes up all the time.”

The new measure would go into effect at popular beaches across the county, including Venice Beach and Dockweiler State Beach.

Parking fees would be increased by about $1 more a day on weekdays or during the winter, not during the summer when the beaches received the most visitors. The measure would also increase the cost of amenities, such as equipment rentals and field trips, as well as create new fees for camper vans and birthday parties, the newspaper reported.

Other sections of the Department of Beaches and Harbors’ budget are not experiencing a deficit. For example, the Marina del Rey, a county-owned plot with both public and private operations, raked in more than $20 million in revenue last year, according to the latest county budget.

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The California Coastal Commission must first OK any parking fee increases approved by the board before they can go into effect. If the board approves other fees, such as the cost of equipment rentals, sailboat storage or community room rentals, the new pricing will go into effect August 1.