Private lakes/beaches are common in Michigan and some other states. There’s usually a boundary of ownership that allows/requires people to pay dues for the private access. The dues go to maintaining the beach and/or lake. It’s very similar to a HOA. My dad was on the board of the lake we lived near.
"“This is the only public beach in California we know of that requires such a fee, which mostly benefits those who live in the immediate area and disproportionately impacts those least able to afford it,” …
Can they name one thing in this whole wide world which involves money changing hands and doesn’t disproportionately impact those least able to afford it?
I just had dinner with the head of the local national forest service. She is in charge of all the federal beaches in Tahoe. They all charge parking fees. So all beaches charge unless you can walk your three year old kids for a mile. The public treats beaches like their own personal junk yard . It is digusting. Garbage, used diapers and dog poo. Private beaches may be the only hope.
It is not only the poor and slobs that mistreat the beaches. She told me one of the wealthy beach front owners called and complained about the high water in Tahoe eliminating the beach this year. She demanded the forest service lower the lake. My friend was nonplussed.