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Pay to play: North Las Vegas considers park admission fee

Pay to play: North Las Vegas considers park admission fee

By Blake McCoy. CREATED Apr 4, 2012

North Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- Would you pay to enter a public park?

That's one option being considered in North Las Vegas where the city can't afford to open the 150-acre crown jewel of it's public park system.

Craig Ranch Regional Park is a former 150-acre golf course near the corner of Craig and Commerce. An admission fee of $5 per car is one option being considered to help offset the $2.3 million operating costs when the massive park opens next year.

"I guess I'm torn between whether you charge are you don't charge because you want to maintain the park," said councilwoman Pamela Goynes-Brown at Tuesday night's meeting.

"We don't want it to be run down, it needs to be taken care of. It's just a unique thing for this valley," echoed councilman Wade Wagner.

A group of consultants hired to study options for the park, estimates a $5 fee could bring in $500,000 per year in revenue for the park.

While Goynes-Brown and Wagner seemed open to the idea, saying no option should be off the table, two councilwomen seemed adamantly opposed: Anita Wood and mayor Sheri Buck.

"Charging people to go use the grass and have a picnic, I just don't think that's right," said Buck.

Fees will almost certainly be charged for special uses like the dog park, skate park and ball fields.

Other options being considered are bringing in a private company to help run the park or setting up a "conservancy", a group of private citizens to help raise money for the park's operations.

No decision was made Tuesday night and the issue was shelved until the June 6 city council meeting.