Forest Fees Delayed
Recreational use fee increases proposed for five coastal locations in the Rogue River Siskiyou National Forest (RRSNF) will be delayed for two years.
The announcement from RRSNF Acting Supervisor Scott Russell comes in response to a request submitted by the City of Brookings in February. The new fees scheduled to take effect this spring will be delayed to May 15, 2020.
The fee increase delay will apply to Little Redwood Campground, Snow Camp Lookout, Ludlum House, Winchuck Campground and Packers Cabin.
Some of the proposed fee increases were as much as 100 per cent.
In his letter to the RRSNF Mayor Jake Pieper said, “We note that the U.S. Forest service first posted notice of the new fees in July and August, 2017, which was at the height of the Chetco Bar Fire. As you know, this fire devastated some 191,000 acres of forestland and continues to disrupted recreational use of the National Forest and Wilderness.”
Pieper continued “While the City recognizes the importance of periodically increasing user fees to sustain the maintenance of recreational facilities and services, the proposed fee increase is untimely as these fees would go into affect just as we are trying to attract recreational visitors back to Brookings and adjacent forest lands.”
The City Council unanimously voted to request that the new fee schedule not be implemented until at least 2020.
In his letter Mayor Pieper, Russell said “I very much appreciate the concerns you bring forward related to economic issues and the important role of tourism to rebuilding economic stability. I understand and appreciate these challenges and recognize the timing of the proposed recreation fees at sites near Brookings is not ideal.”