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California State Parks to appeal rejection of beach parking fee proposal

California State Parks will appeal a decision denying it the ability to expand the number of beaches along the Sonoma Coast where visitors would be charged for parking, a spokesman confirmed Friday.

The issue now heads to the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors and what likely will be another frosty reception to the state's proposal.

State Parks is seeking permission to install 15 new self-pay machines at beaches on the Sonoma Coast and charge visitors a new $8 fee for parking.

The state contends the fees are necessary to maintain beaches and re-open others that were closed due to budget cuts. But critics say the plan is an affront to the concept of people being able to enjoy these places and they have raised concerns whether money raised by new fees would actually stay local.

Members of the Sonoma County Board of Zoning Adjustments on Jan. 17 unanimously voted to deny the state's application seeking a coastal development permit to install the self-pay machines.

The state had until Monday to appeal the decision.


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