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 > Custer State Park. 175 site new camp proposal

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hornet28

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Posted: 01/20/22 09:56am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Grit dog wrote:

So these destinations should be made less available and less desirable to the public? Good grief...


I never said they should be made less desirable. But they do not have to be made to look like the town square either. No idea how old you are but I've seen to many beautiful areas overdeveloped to the point that, in many peoples opinion, they are no longer what made them desirable in the first place





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Posted: 01/20/22 11:22am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

^Well I’m old enough that I’ve taken my own snomachines through Yellowstone, twice. But not old enough to have toured the country in a car without air conditioning.
I just fail to see how an addition to a state park campground is over-development.
That’s playing Sarah Bernhardt….


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SDcampowneroperator

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Posted: 01/20/22 07:38pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

First, I am not opposed to state park camping expansion, I do use the system, not for the cheaper option, but for the experience.
It is fairly arguable that government lodging option is a direct competition option with the private sector, when there is equal and fair opportunity. When the gov. makes their own rules and does not fairly compensate the local community with PILT payments, becoming a burden which should be an asset on the local community .
In 2008, SDGFP sec. Vonk berated us private camp operators during a gfp special commission meeting concerning rates and PILT payments.
He. stated ' If you would just quit your bitching you should be glad you get the overflow we bring in' . Not so. paid Beaurocrat thinking.

There are comparables in Virginia and Alabama, that I know of, where the state parks can expand, but must charge a rate comparable with the surrounding community and reimburse the local comminity for services and costs.


The proposal is running into strong opposition, amongst state legislators, state and local Chambers of Commerce, the DOT, County First responders, County commissioners, wildlife groups, the list goes on.
Governor Noems statement is not correct, in 2009 when the existing CSP campsites were electrified - at a cost of $1Mil - 15 existing sites were converted for the new camping cabins and 35 new sites built for the other 35. Another $1 mil. ( which were built by prison internees)
The proposed location is misrepresented as 'western' in the park, which would place it near emergency services with easy, quick access and off a major highway easily driven by large vehicles. it is not. Wildlife loop road is in the south eastern part of the park, remote, narrow, no shoulders, during high season wait times to turn onto or off it from US 16A can be frustrating. Then theres the inevitable Bison traffic jam.
Add in the cost, she proposed, works out to $ 56k / site, would not recover the bond, maintenance any where near the 10 year timeline. or show any visitor an enhanced experience. Private parks can build comparable sites for $25 k Including buying the land. And pay property taxes to the county which the state park does not.
SD state parks charge high daily, weekly and annual entry fees, offer cheap camp fees. For an overnighter it is prohibitive. For a longer stay, fair, for a resident that can use the parks more, a good deal.
I know The location proposed for this camp. Its not one you or the local South Dakotans would want. Treeless, away from trails,lakes, just an open prairie that would be one big traffic jam an hour from nowhere.

* This post was edited 01/20/22 08:18pm by SDcampowneroperator *

hornet28

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Posted: 01/20/22 07:42pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Did you comprehend what you read. It's not an expansion of an existing campground but going into a somewhat wild area of Custer State Park that according to the article is a prime Elk habitat. Also according to the article the Elk population is down from what the GFP has targeted and the feeling is this is likely to have a negative affect on future growth

valhalla360

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Posted: 01/21/22 01:25am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

By this logic all publicly owned campgrounds should be shut down and returned to wilderness so as not to unfairly compete.

This isn't a new issue as public campgrounds have been around for decades and it sounds like there is more than enough demand to keep the private campgrounds busy even with this one open.


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dieseltruckdriver

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Posted: 01/21/22 05:42pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

SDcampowneroperator wrote:

First to answer you, we sold our park 2 years ago, are retired, our interest now is in equality and fairness.
Yes and no The private and public parks in the state have an inequal relationship. Its more than the free land, no property tax, subsidized utility amortized beyond possibility of bond recovery.
Read and think about the continual past bison blockades to and from this area, that would make even worse EMT services.
Custer County has an established &1.51 deficit/ PILT ( payment in liew of tax ) with CSP, for service to the park from the county taxpayers.
Increased visitor overnight load would demand even more from our services. The only recourse we in Custer co. have to recapture the costs is sales tax, which the State park does not remit to.

Thank you for the response. I knew you had sold and retired. I also understand the frustrations with providing services that do not get reimbursed. I am a retired (health reasons, not age) volunteer firefighter in the northern hills, and I was also on the county Search and Rescue squad. People think the Sturgis rally is a huge windfall but for us it never was, it was and is a huge drain on resources that are never reimbursable. I can definitely see the parallel here. I also question the location, it's one I would very rarely use.

I love South Dakota state parks and recreation area campgrounds, I think they are some of the best in the nation. But that being said I do avoid camping at Custer SP because of the crowds. They also have their own rules compared to every other campground in the state.


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SDcampowneroperator

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Posted: 01/28/22 06:43pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

GF&P has dropped the proposal. it never was a good location - overpriced problematic in every way.
What it was is a political move to draw attention to a percieved need backed by the parks concessionaire to raise their % payment to the state should any sites get added.
I hear they have changed the proposal instead to adding 66 sites to the existing camps at Stockade Lake,
The original proposal ran into universal opposition from every business association, local. AHJ's, first responders and wildlife groups.
The appropriations committee hearing for sd hb 1048 is at 7:45am cst in room 414, feb. /1 2022 in SD state house chambers.
I will be addressing the committee, as a neither for or against. Will present a historical and financial perspective to the proposal to educate our legislators
A google search of sd.gov will lead you to an audio of the hearing. It will be archived and available

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