KILAUEA — The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service may increase entrance fees and add an amenity fee for tours of the Daniel K. Inouye Kilauea Point Lighthouse at the Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge.
The proposed changes to the fee schedule will be available for public review until March 16.
The current entrance fee at the refuge has been in place since 2008 and is $5 for people 16 years of age and over. The service is proposing to increase the entry fee to $10 for people 16 and older.
Prices for the annual $20 kama‘aina pass, as well as the America the Beautiful passes, will not be increased at this time, and those passes will continue to be honored. An amenity fee of $3 for optional lighthouse tours at the refuge is also being proposed.
Additionally, the refuge is evaluating the feasibility of increasing the number of days that the refuge is open to the public for visitation from five days to six or seven days per week.
“Due to steadily increasing visitation to the refuge over the last several years which has resulted in increased traffic congestion and parking shortages at the refuge, the service is also evaluating options for alternative transportation and/or a reservation system for entry into the refuge,” according to a press release. “If a refuge shuttle is implemented in the future, the service will consider an additional increase in fees at that time to help fund operation of the shuttle.”
Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge receives about 500,000 visitors each year. About 80 percent of all money collected from pass sales and entrance fees, with the exception of the Federal Duck Stamp, remains at the refuge to be used for visitor services and facility improvements.
Entrance fees will support projects that improve refuge conditions and provide visitor experiences, including the restoration and maintenance of the historic Daniel K. Inouye Kilauea Point Lighthouse; maintenance of historic structures and other crucial infrastructure; providing quality environmental education programs to youth and adults; training and working with over 100 volunteers and staff to promote visitor experience and safety, outreach and interpretation, and habitat and wildlife monitoring; providing enhanced amenities such as brochures, videos, website management and resource protection.
Comments can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org or written to the Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge at P.O. Box 1128, Kilauea, HI 96754. Send both mail and email messages to the attention of: Proposed Fee Increase.