The National Park Service has made the decision to only accept credit or debit cards for all sales that take place on the NPS registers at the Whiskeytown visitor center.
We recognize that certain visitors will not be able to pay with a credit /debit card, and for those, we have an agreement in place with the Western National Parks Association (WNPA) allowing them to accept cash for Whiskeytown Seven Day ($15 to $25) and Annual Passes ($45) as well as the America the Beautiful Federal Lands and Recreation Annual Pass ($80). The stores at Oak Bottom and Brandy Creek Beach will accept cash as well as credit and debit for pass sales.
For many years, the Whiskeytown visitor center has collected entrance fees via cash and check in addition to credit and debit cards. However, because we have been managing cash and checks, we have been spending significant amounts of time (staff salary costs) ensuring proper management and accountability. This in turn has reduced the amount of revenue available to spend on critical needs, projects and visitor services. Additionally, anytime an organization handles cash, there is the potential for mistakes, waste, fraud and abuse.
Therefore on December 1, 2019, we will join other national park sites that accept credit/debit cards only. In doing so, we hope to:
1) Reduce the amount of time park staff spend managing, counting, reconciling (using 2 staff members at all times), and depositing the cash to a bank (i.e. reduce our administrative burden).
2) Increase the amount of fee revenue available to support critical projects and visitor services.
3) Improve accountability and reduce opportunities for improprieties.
4) As per Treasury Financial Bulletin 31 U.S.C. CH 321, 3302, and 3720 which
recommends the acceptance of credit cards in lieu of cash.
Whiskeytown National Recreation Area collects entrance fees under the authority of the Federal Lands Recreation and Enhancement Act. 80% of the entrance fee you pay is retained by the park and is used to address critical needs projects and to maintain visitor services. The other 20 percent is used to benefit parks that do not collect fees.