U.S. Forest Service Opens Public Comment Period For Special-Use Permit Policy

The following is courtesy of the U.S. Forest Service:

USDA Forest Service photo by Marion Glaser

Forest Service proposes to expand allowance for reissuance of permits for certain cabins

JUNEAU, Alaska — Jan. 9, 2024 —A 60-day public comment period is open now through March 9 for interested parties to share feedback on a proposed revision to the Forest Service’s special use permit policy.  

The proposed policy revision addresses certain privately owned cabins that existed on the Tongass and Chugach National Forests when the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA) was enacted on Dec. 2, 1980. 

“I know many cabin owners and their families have long sought a change in the way the Forest Service manages special use permits for their cabins,” said Acting Regional Forester Janelle Crocker. “After thorough consideration, the Region is proposing a policy revision so we can reissue special use permits for ANILCA cabins to allow for traditional and customary uses so long as there is no direct threat to or significant impact to the National Forests.” 

Currently, the Forest Service limits reissuances of permits to one time for certain cabins and in other circumstances does not allow for any reissuance of permits. The Forest Service defines reissuance as authorizing a new special use permit for the same use when the ownership of a cabin changes hands.   

The Forest Service is working directly with individual cabin owners to ensure that no owner has to relinquish their cabin while the proposed policy revision is under review. Additional information on the proposed revision can be found on the ANILCA Cabin Policy website

Comments can be submitted before March 9 in several ways: 

  • Electronically at: fs.usda.gov/goto/anilca-cabins-comment  
  • Mail to: USDA Forest Service, Regional Forester c/o Jennifer Berger, P.O. Box 21628, Juneau, AK 99802-1628 
  • Hand-deliver to: USDA Forest Service, Regional Forester c/o Jennifer Berger, 709 W. 9th Street, Juneau, AK 99802.  

For more information about this proposed policy revision contact Jennifer Berger, Alaska Region Public Services Program Lead by email: jennifer.berger@usda.gov; or by phone at: 907-802-4224.

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