A friend gave me call the other day and it went down something like this. “The assholes, did you hear what San Marino did?”
“Nope, now what?”
“They are charging NON-RESIDENTS fees to use public parks”. What….and the fume went further. They had gotten wind that Lacy Park, funded with a lot of state money for parks is charging admission to non-San Marino residents. They even went as far as to rant that their source, a little old lady in San Marino, was glad it was going to keep the riff raff out of San Marino. They opined that San Marino was trying to remain lily white within its borders (that’s too late given the large Asian population but that’s another stupid debate for another time).
So after a bit of research I found this interesting op-ed piece in the LA Times titled: “You paid for San Marino to play” by Steve Lopez. The article confirms the $4.00 fee charged to non-residents to use the park, reportedly to cover the city overhead for maintenance and parking.
US, State and County parks charge fees. Monrovia charges fees to it’s Canyon Park so the idea of charging at a municipal level isn’t unheard of.
So what do you have to say. Does a city have the right to charge parking to use public parks? If so can they designate the fee to only non-residents?