(Update: Adding video, comments from Oregon State Parks spokesman, Tumalo park visitor)
TUMALO, Ore. (KTVZ) --Visitors from out of state who rent an RV campsite at an Oregon state park soon will have to pay 25% more than an Oregon resident renting the same campsite.
Oregonians currently pay a licensing fee to register recreational vehicles with the DMV. Those fees help maintain Oregon state parks.
Chris Havel, Oregon State Parks spokesman, said Friday adding the surcharge to out-of-state visitors who come with recreational vehicles and stay at campsites is meant to have them help contribute to maintaining state parks as well.
State park attendance has steadily increased in the past few years.
"In the last five years, from 2014 to 2019, we were breaking records every single year," said Havel.
He said the surcharge will help maintain the features that attract people to state park campsites.
"We provide power, water, and sewer connections in a site because we know that's what people want from an Oregon state park experience," Havel said.
Debbie Byes, a Colorado resident camping at Tumalo State Park Friday afternoon, said she often visits Oregon. She said she always has a pleasant experience when visiting and understands why the surcharge is needed.
"I fully support it. We get to come here and enjoy the beauty of Oregon, and if that costs a little more and helps in any way for the outdoor community, we're more than happy to pay that," Byes said.
The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department has formed a committee to discuss and finalize the RV campsite changes, under the terms of Oregon Senate Bill 794, adopted by lawmakers earlier this year.
Guidelines for the changes are expected to be announced next month and to take effect in early 2022.