General Comments



Approximately 28 respondents commented on the enforceability of the proposed rule. Specifically, six respondents stated that enforcement of the rule would be provocative and confrontational because the rule would be ignored and the agency would have to make mass arrests, disperse large crowds, or obtain a restraining order to enforce it. Thirty respondents stated that the cost to administer or enforce the rule either would exceed income, would be a waste of taxpayer dollars, or would overburden the Forest Service and the court system.


The Forest Service currently works to the extent possible with organizers of group uses before, during, and after the activities take place to try to prevent problems.

Adoption of this final rule will not change the agency's efforts to work cooperatively with groups who wish to use National Forest System lands, nor does the agency foresee any problem with implementation of the final rule. If a group fails to obtain a special use authorization that is required by the rule, the agency can take other action short of making mass arrests or obtaining a restraining order. For example, in most federal judicial districts, the agency may impose a fine for failure to obtain a special use authorization required for use and occupancy of National Forest System lands.

No income to the U.S. Treasury is generated under the final rule. There are always costs to the taxpayer when large groups use the national forests. As the reports on the 1991 an 1992 Rainbow Family Gathering indicate, the agency incurs substantial costs in connection with group uses in order to protect the resource, address concerns of public health and safety, and allocate space. For example, some of the costs cover water quality testing, road maintenance, personnel, scarification, and law enforcement. Requiring a special use authorization should decrease rather than increase these costs by enhancing the agency's ability to prevent or minimize resource damage.

Efficacy of the Rulemaking

Listing of Comments

FS Regulation Page