An annual retreat staged in California by an elite club that has included powerful U.S. political and business leaders is facing scrutiny for excluding women.

The criticism of the Bohemian Club comes after female supervisors from Sonoma County questioned whether they should allow sheriff’s deputies to provide security for the event, which the supervisors say discriminates against women.

The annual retreat takes place over 18 days in July in a private campground in Monte Rio.

FILE - In this July 29, 1971 file photo is the roadway into the exclusive Bohemian Grove, a quiet encampment 80 miles north of San Francisco in Monte Rio, Calif. A retreat for members of the elite Bohemian Club is facing renewed scrutiny for excluding women. This comes after the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors raised questions about whether sheriff's deputies should provide security for an event that discriminates by gender.  (AP Photo/Sal Veder, File)
FILE – In this July 29, 1971 file photo is the roadway into the exclusive Bohemian Grove, a quiet encampment 80 miles north of San Francisco in Monte Rio, Calif. A retreat for members of the elite Bohemian Club is facing renewed scrutiny for excluding women. This comes after the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors raised questions about whether sheriff’s deputies should provide security for an event that discriminates by gender. (AP Photo/Sal Veder, File)

The retreat and club itself have long been shrouded in secrecy and intrigue.

County supervisors have approved the security contract for the past 14 years. But this time, they asked county lawyers to study whether the event is discriminatory before they make a decision, expected Tuesday.

Founded by journalists and artists in 1872, the club grew to include presidents such as Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan as well as various FBI and CIA directors and titans of industry.

FILE - In this July 13, 2002, file photo, Tara Timberman, middle, of Occidental, Calif., demonstrates outside the gates of the Bohemian Grove, a private forested area near Monte Rio, Calif., during a protest against the Bohemian Club's annual meeting. A retreat for members of the elite Bohemian Club is facing renewed scrutiny for excluding women. This comes after the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors raised questions about whether sheriff's deputies should provide security for an event that discriminates by gender. (Kent Porter/The Press Democrat via AP, File)
FILE – In this July 13, 2002, file photo, Tara Timberman, middle, of Occidental, Calif., demonstrates outside the gates of the Bohemian Grove, a private forested area near Monte Rio, Calif., during a protest against the Bohemian Club’s annual meeting. A retreat for members of the elite Bohemian Club is facing renewed scrutiny for excluding women. This comes after the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors raised questions about whether sheriff’s deputies should provide security for an event that discriminates by gender. (Kent Porter/The Press Democrat via AP, File)

Representatives from Singer Associates, a public relations firm that represents the Bohemian Club, did not respond to calls seeking comment.

An exterior view is seen of the Bohemian Club's home Monday, June 10, 2019, in San Francisco. An elite Northern California men's retreat hosted by the exclusive Bohemian Club is facing scrutiny for excluding women. This comes after female supervisors from Sonoma County questioned whether they should allow sheriff's deputies to provide security for the event, which the supervisors say discriminates against women. While women can enter the club's San Francisco headquarters, they are barred from the annual July encampment where men reportedly relax and perform skits. (AP Photo/Samantha Maldonado)
An exterior view is seen of the Bohemian Club’s home Monday, June 10, 2019, in San Francisco. An elite Northern California men’s retreat hosted by the exclusive Bohemian Club is facing scrutiny for excluding women. This comes after female supervisors from Sonoma County questioned whether they should allow sheriff’s deputies to provide security for the event, which the supervisors say discriminates against women. While women can enter the club’s San Francisco headquarters, they are barred from the annual July encampment where men reportedly relax and perform skits. (AP Photo/Samantha Maldonado)
FILE - In this July 22, 2006 file photo, protesters Gary and Janet Evans of Sebastopol, Calif., try to talk with California Highway Patrol officers and Sonoma County Sheriff's deputies as they block off the entrance to the annual Bohemian Grove retreat, an exclusive California retreat for government and business leaders in Monte Rio, Calif. A retreat for members of the elite Bohemian Club is facing renewed scrutiny for excluding women. This comes after the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors raised questions about whether sheriff's deputies should provide security for an event that discriminates by gender. Female supervisors say they were inspired by the #MeToo movement and in threats to women's rights nationally. (Kent Porter/The Press Democrat via AP, File)
FILE – In this July 22, 2006 file photo, protesters Gary and Janet Evans of Sebastopol, Calif., try to talk with California Highway Patrol officers and Sonoma County Sheriff’s deputies as they block off the entrance to the annual Bohemian Grove retreat, an exclusive California retreat for government and business leaders in Monte Rio, Calif. A retreat for members of the elite Bohemian Club is facing renewed scrutiny for excluding women. This comes after the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors raised questions about whether sheriff’s deputies should provide security for an event that discriminates by gender. Female supervisors say they were inspired by the #MeToo movement and in threats to women’s rights nationally. (Kent Porter/The Press Democrat via AP, File)