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User Fees

As a member of a number of small organizations which are “users” of Los Angeles County parks and gardens, I wish to protest a recent directive by the director of these facilities.

After more than 15 years of participation in garden shows, bonsai exhibitions and group meetings, I have become a witness to a major decline in attendance to our affairs. Where a weeklong show would attract several thousand Los Angeles residents, we now see a major reduction in attendance due to the $3 entry fee.

Now, the facility management has seen fit to enact another “user” charge of $50 and $25 to organizations which use these public garden buildings for their meetings and shows. (This is a daily charge).

This new ruling will effectively drive many of these organizations out of the county facilities and further reduce the public endowment for which they were intended.

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Smaller organizations do not have the ability to absorb these extraordinary costs, nor can our membership afford to pay for meeting attendance in addition to garden entry fees!

Is budget balancing now a hard-nosed business without regard for ordinary citizens who use these beautiful facilities to further the enjoyment of nature and the receding environment?

MARTIN L. MANN

Van Nuys


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