May 9, 2019


AUSTIN - As an author of HB 1561, State Rep. Ryan Guillen (D-Rural South Texas) is working to allow state park entrance fees to be waived for certain Texans, including fifth graders and senior citizens over the age of 70.  

"Our state's parks are one of the best things about Texas, providing a unique opportunity to engage with and learn from nature," said Guillen. "But like most great experiences, they aren't free."


With over a million visitors each year, state parks must charge entrance fees in order to fund necessary upkeep and maintenance. However, the legislation would grant Texas students with the opportunity to visit state parks, without requiring funds be used from school budgets, and allow fifth graders with a unique educational experience. Additionally, senior citizens over the age of 70 would also be waived of entrance fees when attending state parks, a small token of appreciation for their many years of contributing to society.

"Texas' unique and beautiful landscape attracts millions of visitors to our state," added Guillen. "The passage of this bill would not only grant young Texans the chance to experience it themselves, but also help to create lifelong memories."


Serving ten rural South Texas counties in the Texas House of Representatives, Ryan Guillen is known for his hard work, fierce independence, and relentless efforts for South Texas families. Recently, Capitol Inside called him a “House Bill Machine,” and a “one-person assembly line for legislation.” Since elected, few other legislators have passed more bills than Guillen. Sign up for updates at,, and