November 5, 2007
Contact: Tom Gorey
BLM Waives Recreation-related Fees for Veterans
on Veterans Day
The Bureau of Land Management will waive recreation-related fees for veterans and military personnel, along with their families, on Veterans Day, Sunday, November 11.
BLM Director Jim Caswell, a Vietnam veteran, encouraged veterans and members of the U.S. Armed Forces to recreate on BLM-managed or other Federal lands on November 11, saying, "This is a small, but special way of saying thanks to all who have served or are currently serving to defend our country and safeguard our liberties."
The waiver of entrance and/or standard amenity fees on Veterans Day applies annually, starting last year, to public recreation lands under the management of the BLM, National Park Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, and Bureau of Reclamation (all agencies of the Department of the Interior), and the U.S. Forest Service (part of the Department of Agriculture).
The Veterans Day fee waiver takes place on November 11, even if the Federal observance of the holiday occurs on a different day. This year, the Federal observance of Veterans Day falls on Monday, November 12.
Recreation fee-setting and waiver authority for the BLM and other Federal agencies is based on the Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act, passed by Congress as part of a Fiscal Year 2005 appropriations bill that was signed into law by President Bush on December 8, 2004.
The BLM, an agency of the U.S. Department of the Interior, manages more land – 258 million surface acres – than any other Federal agency. Most of this public land is located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The Bureau, with a budget of about $1.8 billion, also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM’s multiple-use mission is to sustain the health and productivity of the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. The Bureau accomplishes this by managing such activities as outdoor recreation, livestock grazing, mineral development, and energy production, and by conserving natural, historical, cultural, and other resources on the public lands.