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Forest Service finalizes directive on recreational fees

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The U.S. Forest Service (USFS) is announcing a new directive on recreation fees. USFS is making the announcement officially on Monday, Dec. 9. You can read about it at http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2013-12-09/html/2013-29305.htm.

The new directive, which takes effect immediately on Monday, replaces interim guidance that has been in effect since 2005 to comply with the Recreation Enhancement Act, which was enacted in 2004. USFS says some of the guidance has become “obsolete.”

Under the law, national forests can charge user fees and use the funds collected on site to maintain and enhance recreational opportunities at the sites where they collect fees.

USFS did not put the directive up for public comment because it is merely incorporating the requirements in the law and not interpreting them, the agency explains.

Therefore, the rules aren't changing but USFS explains that “(f)ormalizing direction on these requirements will assist Forest Service employees who administer the Recreation Fee Program.”

USFS plans to place the final directive online.

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