Right-of-Way Costs

There are three different fees associated with obtaining a ROW on BLM-managed public land. Processing fees, Monitoring fees and Rents are adjusted annually based on inflation.

No processing fee, monitoring fee or rent is required for:

  • state or local agencies or instrumentalities thereof (except municipal utilities and cooperatives whose principal source of revenue is customer charges) where the land will be used for governmental proposes and the land resources will continue to serve the public interest; or 
  • road use agreements or reciprocal road agreements.

Other exemptions, waivers or reductions of fees and/or rent may apply and can be explained during the pre-application meeting.

Processing Fee

Applicants are required to reimburse the United States in advance for the cost of processing an application. The fees are based on the amount of time the BLM estimates it will take to process your application and issue a decision to grant or deny the application. We will determine the appropriate once you have submitted your complete application, and will notify you in writing of this fee. You must submit the appropriate payment before we can begin processing your application.

There are six Processing Fee categories. The Processing Fee Schedule is available at BLM offices. Categories 1 through 4 are one-time, non-refundable fees based on the number of federal work hours involved to process an application. Category 5 is for Master Agreements, which are negotiated with a single applicant for processing and monitoring multiple applications covering facilities within a specific geographic area. Any application that requires more than 50 hours to process is a Category 6, which requires the applicant to reimburse the BLM for the full cost of processing an application.

Monitoring Fee

The Monitoring fee reimburses the BLM for monitoring the construction, operation, maintenance and termination of the project, including protection and rehabilitation of the public lands involved. The fee is based on the estimated number of work hours necessary to monitor your grant.

The BLM will determine the category for your project and notify you in writing of the appropriate fee. You must pay the Monitoring fee before we issue you a ROW grant. 


Rents are charged on an annual basis. The Linear Rent Schedule is adjusted annually based on changes to the Implicit Price Deflator Index (an inflation index), The Communication Uses Rental Schedule is adjusted annually based on changes to the Consumer Price Index, All Urban Consumers (CPI-U). Rents for linear and communication site ROWs on public land are established via two separate administrative schedules, based on land values in the project area and, in some cases, an appraisal. We will notify you of the initial rent amount due. You must pay rent for the initial rent period before we issue you a ROW grant.