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State Lawmakers Learn From Yosemite Concessionaire Dispute

Sacramento, CA — In an attempt to prevent the type of legal battle witnessed in Yosemite National Park, state lawmakers have introduced a bill to avoid trademark disputes from happening at state parks.

AB 2249 has been introduced by Mother Lode Republican Assemblyman Frank Bigelow, and Democratic Assemblymembers Ken Cooley (Rancho Cordova) and Adam Gray (Merced). It prohibits concessionaires from claiming ownership of a name associated with a California state park. In addition, any such trademark claim would disqualify the concessionaire from future contracts.

Several Yosemite landmarks, like the Ahwahnee Hotel and Curry Village, are set to have new names effective March 1st.

Assemblyman Gray says, “Our state parks are not like football or baseball stadiums, trading sponsorship deals to the highest bidder. The people of California protect and preserve these landmarks as a part of our history, and it is the people of California who own their storied names.”

The region has several state parks like Railtown 1897, Columbia State Park and Calaveras Big Trees.