That slimy worm your kid dug up will cost you $150.
Feeding or even scaring some critter? That’ll be $100.
Failing to scoop up Fido’s poo? $120.
Failing to scoop up your own poo? $200
Don’t believe it? Wanna bet?
Gambling will cost you another $250.
These fines are among dozens set to increase at the popular Cuyahoga Valley National Park, an expansive swath stretching from Cleveland to Akron that draws more than 2.5 million visitors per year.
For some, it’s hard to tell which is more unusual: the price hikes or some of the laws.
Take this one: “Tossing, throwing or rolling rocks or other items inside caves or caverns, valleys, etc.” A violation is $50. Rolling that same rock will now cost violators $200.
Under the proposals, most fines will double, some will quadruple, others will balloon seven-fold.
The fees were approved through a vote completed Friday among federal judges within the Northern District of Ohio. No date has been set for the new fines to be implemented.
Pam Barnes, a parks spokeswoman, said in most instances the fees are being “updated” for the first time in about 25 years and are largely consistent with fines already imposed by municipal agencies for similar offenses.
Many of the ordinances – such as digging up fishing bait or rolling stones – are in place to insure the parks remain pristine, she said.
“It’s all about protecting the resources for the next visitor and leaving it undisturbed,” she said.
News of fine hikes comes after last year’s failed attempt to raise park admission fees on a national level. Last fall, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke proposed to increase peak-season entrance fees at 17 national parks – such as Yosemite – from $25 to $70. The increases are needed, the feds said, to help pay for millions of dollars in needed maintenance to national park facilities.
Public outrage has put those proposals on hold.
Now, however, it appears the feds are looking for money from scofflaws.
Like kids. If your 10-year-old won’t wear a life preserver, that’ll be a $150 fine.
Or grandma. Driving too slow, and “interfering with normal traffic flow” will now run you double: $100.
And panhandlers. Soliciting or demanding gifts, money, services are prohibited. That fine is being hiked from $50 to $200.
Yogi Bear might want to know that failing to follow a park ranger’s order jumps from $100 to $500.
Even Yogi’s picnic may be in jeopardy. Having a picnic in a closed area is also being doubled to $100, ants not included.
And hitchhikers. That’ll be double; $100 for thumbing a ride.
On a more somber note, spreading a loved one’s ashes without a permit, is another fine doubling to $100.
Forget to renew your driver’s license? $150. No proof of insurance? That goes from $50 to $350.
If your plane crashes, let it be. “Removal of downed aircraft” is a violation. The fine is being raised from $100 to $500.
Finally, if you’re frazzled after reading all this, just say no to drugs. But if you don’t or can’t, marijuana is your best bet. Getting caught with weed is now a $200 fine. Possessing any other drug is being raised from $300 to $500.