Ketchikan, Alaska (KINY) - The public has 128 days, starting today, to comment on proposed new and increased recreation fees at 17 developed forest recreation sites in southeast Alaska.
Locations with proposed changes include developed day-use areas, group picnic sites, campgrounds, cabins, and wildlife viewing sites.
A complete list of locations and proposed fees is available on the interactive Alaska Region Recreation Fee Proposals site.
Comments can be submitted four ways from May 26 – Sept. 30:
- Online - Electronic comments are accepted at bit.ly/3ItLeOe.
- Email - firstname.lastname@example.org
- Mail - Commenters should mail comments by the closing date to: Tongass National Forest – Ketchikan SO, Attention: John Suomala, Recreation & Wilderness Program Manager, 648 Mission Street, Suite No. 110, Ketchikan, AK 99901-6591.
- In-person or by phone - Comments may be provided in-person at any Forest Service office in southeast Alaska Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. or by calling 907-228-6215.
Comment information, including the commenter’s name and address, will be considered part of the public record and viewable by the public.
“Recreation fee increases help close the gap between annual revenue and actual costs for operations and maintenance,” said Jay Anderson, Recreation Staff Officer for the Tongass National Forest. “As an example, our Fish Creek Bear Viewing Site has an annual cost of over $350,000 with an average fee collection of approximately $50,000. “
The public will be informed six months before charging a new or increased fee. If approved, fee changes will take effect in 2024. Collected fees are used to fund ongoing operations, maintenance, and improvements to provide high-quality recreation sites for locals and visitors alike.