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BRC National Land Use Update

Postby rblank » Wed Sep 06, 2006 7:35 am

Organizational Framework for National Recreation Resource Advisory Councils Announced

Dear BRC Action Alert Subscriber,

Pursuant to the controversial Federal Land Recreation Enhancement Act (FLREA), the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and U.S.D.A. Forest Service (FS) have announced the development of an organizational framework for the Recreation Resource Advisory Councils (Recreation RACs). The framework was based on public input during 11 meetings held in Idaho, Oregon, California, Colorado, Arizona, Nevada, Georgia, and Washington, D.C.

The Recreation RACs will provide recommendations on implementing or eliminating standard amenity fees, expanded amenity fees and non-commercial individual special recreation permit fees; expanding or limiting the recreation fee program; and fee level changes (increases or decreases.)

Recreation RACs do not make recommendations on recreation fee sites operated by a concessionaire or contractor, commercial permits such as outfitting and guiding, or Forest Service special use permits and BLM special recreation permits issued for group events such as bike races.

According to an update released yesterday the agencies, the BLM and FS Recreation RAC structure will be:

1) Both agencies will use existing BLM Resource Advisory Councils (BLM RACs) in states where appropriate. These states include: Arizona, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota and Utah.

2) Both agencies will use new Recreation RACs, chartered by the FS, for the Pacific Northwest Region (Oregon and Washington), the Pacific Southwest Region (California), the State of Colorado, and for the Eastern and Southern Regions (these represent most States east of the Rockies).

3) The FS will use an existing FS Advisory Board for the Black Hills National Forest in South Dakota.

4) Neither the FS nor the BLM will use Recreation RACs where the Secretaries of Agriculture and the Interior, in consultation with the Governor of individual States, have determined that sufficient interest does not exist in forming a FS-chartered Recreation RAC or using a BLM RAC as allowed in the Recreation Enhancement Act (REA). Those States that are not establishing Recreation RACs are Alaska, Wyoming and Nebraska.

5) Any of the above described FS-chartered Recreation RACs or BLM RACs may choose to develop subcommittees to better address local community or recreation interests.

6) BLM RACs and FS-chartered Recreation RACs will be providing recommendations for both BLM and FS recreation fees where applicable.

For a more detailed description of the organization, please visit:

The FS will soon begin accepting nominations for membership on the new Recreation RACs. If you are interested in nominating yourself or a member of your organization, please visit the FS Recreation RAC website at: All nomination information as well as regional contacts will be posted to this site.

New Recreation RACs, which will occur in the Forest Service's Eastern, Southern, Pacific Northwest, Pacific Southwest and Alaska Regions will consist of 11 members who represent the following interests as indicated in REA:
* Five people who represent recreation users and include as appropriate:
o Winter motorized
o Winter non-motorized
o Summer motorized
o Summer non-motorized
o Hunting and fishing
* Three people who represent interest groups that include as appropriate:
o Motorized outfitters and guides
o Non-motorized outfitter and guides
o Local environmental groups
* Three people, one in each position:
o State tourism official
o A person who represents affected local government interests
o A person who represents affected Indian tribes' issues

BLM RACs are already formed and members are in place; however the BLM periodically solicits nominations for vacant positions. These BLM RAC's may consider establishing subcommittees specifically to address recreation fees.

If you are interested in serving on a BLM RAC, please visit local information about becoming a member of individual BLM RACs.

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us at BRC.

Brian Hawthorne
Public Lands Director
BlueRibbon Coalition
208-237-1008 ext 102
*DISCLAIMER* - The views expressed herein are the personal views of the author and do not in any way represent, nor imply to represent, the views of the North East Association of 4 Wheel Drive Clubs, it's officers, members, or affiliates.
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