Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Maine Campground Owner Allen York Keeps on Whinning

Commercial lots that allow free parking to RVs illustrate a real and growing threat to many of Maine's 275 campgrounds. Fact is, each time an RV stops for the night in a commercial parking lot, a local campground loses out on a customer. And these days, each lost customer makes a larger dent on a campground's bottom line.

To address this issue, the Maine Campground Owners Association (MECOA), of which I am president, recently supported a bill in the Maine Legislature that in part called for the creation of a Web site and brochures to educate RV owners about alternatives to commercial parking lots, including the locations of approved free camping areas and campgrounds close to highway exits.

RV owners across the United States have complained that they felt the bill, sponsored by Rep. Anne Perry, was unfair and amounted to a black eye on Maine's tourism efforts. MECOA encouraged Perry to withdraw the bill.

But that hasn't stopped the outcry. Campground owners continue to hear directly from RV owners angered that Maine's Legislature would consider such a law. I have received hundreds of messages that range from simple opposition to the proposed legislation to personal attacks targeting my business and vowing to never again patronize my campground.

Read the rest of York's whine here...
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