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U.S. FOREST SERVICE
The U.S. Forest Service is under the Department of Agriculture. They have stewardship responsibility for 155 National Forests and 20 National Grasslands, encompassing 193 million acres of public lands.
Montana forest alienates volunteer group
A longstanding volunteer program to build and maintain a cabin on the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest for free winter use by cross-country skiers has ended amid rancor. The Forest Supervisor broke a promise that winter use would always be free and instead plans to put the cabin up for winter rental. In response, the volunteers have walked away from the cabin maintenance they previously provided as a gift to the Forest and the public. ACTION NEEDED to reverse this terrible decision! Read more HERE.
High Impact Recreation Areas (HIRAs):
The Forest Service is using this agency-invented designation to circumvent the restrictions in the Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act on where fees can be charged. A recent agency-wide review recommends massive downscaling of almost all HIRAs, and a federal appeals court decision requires it. But will the Forests comply? Read more HERE..
WHOSE FORESTS ARE THEY, ANYWAY?
The Forest Service has withdrawn their proposal to eliminate discounted camping fees for Senior/Disabled lifetime passholders at concessionaire managed recreation sites. But they still allow concessionaires to refuse passes at day use sites that the Forest Service would be legally required to honor at the exact same site. Read our Analysis of the public comments and the continuing issues regarding concessionaire management HERE.
Pacific Northwest Citizen Advisory Committee
Held a meeting by teleconference on February 2, 2010. The public was allowed to call in and provide comments during the meeting, and fourteen people did so. Both the telephone comments and the written comments overwhelmingly opposed the 73 new and increased fees that were on the agenda, but the Advisory Committee approved all but one of them anyway.
Details HERE. 19-minute informational podcast HERE!
RECREATION FACILITY ANALYSIS: FEE IT OR KISS IT GOODBYE. The U.S. Forest Service is planning to close thousands of developed recreation sites, raise fees, and charge new fees, with completely inadequate public involvement. MORE
RECREATION RESOURCE ADVISORY COMMITTEES: THE FIX IS IN. Agency-appointed advisory committees nationwide are reviewing Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management proposals for new and increased fees, with minimal public notification or involvement. Find out what has been approved, what's on the next agenda, and how you can participate. MORE
Forest Service 2008 Visitation Report Shows Continued Decline The lastest report from the Forest Service National Visitor Use Monitoring program shows continued declines in the number of people visiting public lands. This is bad for people, especially kids, who need to be spending more, not less, time outdoors. It's also bad for the Forest Service, as they watch the number of people who care about public lands issues dwindle. When no one visits National Forests, who will care if there's a Forest Service or not? Read 2008 report HERE. Comparison table by Region for 2001-2008 HERE.
Internal Forest Service documents about fees. MORE