Section 251.56--Terms and ConditionsAnother respondent stated that
a performance bond should be required when necessary to ensure compliance with the terms
and conditions of special use authorizations, regardless of whether the holder is
exercising a constitutional right.
Several respondents objected generally to requiring insurance and bonding for
activities subject to the proposed rule. Ten specifically objected to requiring a bond
on the ground that it is unnecessary and discriminates against those who do not have
a lot of money. One objected that requiring a bond discriminates against those who do
not share the majority viewpoint of the Forest Service. Three respondents stated that
bonding should not be required for noncommercial uses. One respondent stated that
bonding could still be required for noncommercial uses, given the vagueness of the
definition of ``commercial use or activity'' and probably would be required given the
history and apparent intent of the regulation.
Section 251.56(e) of the proposed rule provided that no bond was required for
activities subject to the rule.
One respondent stated that those who use the national forests should be
required to furnish a copy of their insurance policies.
The special use regulations do not contain any provisions on insurance
(see 36 CFR part 251, subpart B), and the Department as a matter of policy will not
require insurance for activities subject to the final rule.
This policy demonstrates
the Department's intent to ensure that no undue burdens are imposed on the exercise of
First Amendment rights.
Under the final rule, an authorized officer may not require bonding for activities
subject to the rule. As discussed in response to comments on Sec. 251.51, the Department
has clarified and narrowed the definition of ``commercial use or activity'' so that it
cannot be construed to include noncommercial activities. It is not the Department's
intent to require bonding for noncommercial group uses. The Department's intent is to
ensure that no undue burdens are imposed on the exercise of First Amendment rights.
Having considered the comments received, the Department has retained without change
Sec. 251.56(e) in the final rule.
Listing of Comments
FS Regulation Page