BLM Recreation Fee/Permit Policy

BLM’s recreation permit and fee policy is outlined in BLM’s Recreation Permits and Fees Manual (2930), and is further discussed in BLM’s Recreation Permit Administration Handbook (H-2930-1).
The objectives of the BLM’s recreation permit and fee policy are to:

  • Standardize administrative procedures for the issuance and management of recreation permits and to be as consistent as possible with other Federal agency policies. 
  • Manage permits, recreation fees, and commercial services in a way that is business-oriented, efficient, and accountable.
  • Establish a permit and fee program that supports the emphasis on resource-dependent recreation opportunities (or “niches”), while responding to demonstrated needs for recreation programs and facility development which protect resource values and public health and safety.
  • Establish a permit and fee program that provides needed public services and satisfies recreation demand within allowable use levels while minimizing user conflicts and protecting and enhancing public lands and recreation opportunities and sustainable healthy ecosystems. This includes maintaining recreation programs and facilities to a standard that protects the resource, the public and their investment, and that fosters pride of public ownership.
  • Assure that recreational users assume an appropriate share of the cost of maintaining recreation programs and facilities and protecting the resources, by establishing and assessing equitable fees at appropriate facilities and for certain uses of the public lands. Assure that the United States is provided a fair return for commercial recreational use of the public lands. (This does not include maximizing revenue.)
  • Issue recreation permits in an equitable manner for specific recreational uses of the public lands and related waters as a means to manage visitor use; provide for visitor health, safety, and enjoyment; minimize adverse resource impacts; and provide for private and commercial recreation use according to limits or allocations established through the Bureau planning system.
  • Assure that recreation permits are specifically addressed in land use planning. This includes identifying both the types of recreation permits and activities that support the management objectives for each Recreation Management Area (RMA) and Recreation Management Zone (RMZ), as well as identifying recreational events and activities that would not be permitted.   The foundation for recreation permitting decisions in Land Use Plans is a Benefits Based Management approach as outlined in the BLM’s Unified Strategy to Implement “BLM’s Priorities for Recreation and Visitor Services” Workplan, 2007.
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