Fee Demo coming!!!

martininsocal

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Ok, I think you have heard it before, but the official word is out from the Barstow BLM Office. The OHV area Fee Demo Program is going to be implemented in the following 4 OHV areas- Stoddard Valley, Johnson Valley, El Mirage, and Dumont. It will be 20 for a weeks pass or 60 dollars for 1 year. This will cover your primary vehicle. There is no mention of how many passes you will need for multiple vehicles, but there is a multiple vehicle program in the Forest Adventure pass program, I believe it is an additional 5 dollars for a second pass. I don't understand why the cost is almost twice what the Forest Adventure pass is. According to Mike Ahrensm teh BLM Field Officer in charge, the money will be used to offset a reduction in federal and green sticker funds they have been dealing with that mounts to about 2.5 million dollars. They claim teh money will stay "in house" only to be used for the 4 areas mentioned. They have already said they will fund aditional law enforcement folks for all areas, and will be adding EMS personnel to Dumaont and El Mirage on a regular basis and will also use the money to have EMS personnel at special events in the other 2 areas.
Does this mean that the promoters will no longer have to provide EMS personnel at the races because the BLM will be doing it themselves? I can see how it would be hard to justify making a promoter pay for EMS coverage and then it is used by someone not involved with the race. I also want to know how the multiple vehicle deal is gonna fall. Will Green sticker vehicles be exempt or am I gonna have tohave passes for 2 bikes, 2 buugies, and 2 tow/support vehicles? Thats only 360 bucks! And it doesn't include Glamis or Pismo. I also wantto know about the private property in the OVH area. Since I have been shopping for a parcel outthere, are they gonna charge me to access my own property? How about those just travelling on the County roads through there? Can you say gov't money hole?
 

tkr

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$60????? That's ridiculous!!!!!
 

desertratt

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heres a copy of the memo i got from another site:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT ANNOUNCES RECREATION FEE DEMONSTRATION
PROGRAM AT FOUR POPULAR OFF-HIGHWAY VEHICLE RIDING AREAS

BARSTOW, CA (Aug. 4, 2003) - The Bureau of Land Management's
(BLM) Barstow Field Office announced today that it will implement a
Recreation Fee Demonstration Program for four popular desert
off-highway vehicle riding areas effective Oct. 1, 2003, according to
Mike Ahrens, off-highway vehicle coordinator for the Barstow BLM.
Ahrens said the riding areas to be included in the recreation
fee program are Dumont Dunes with 10,000 acres; Johnson Valley, the
world's largest designated OHV area with 188,000 acres; Stoddard
Valley with 53,000 acres, and El Mirage with 25,000 acres. The
22,000-acre Rasor riding area will continue to be a free area.
Nearly one-half million OHV enthusiasts visit these areas each year.
"Clearly, this was not an easy decision for the Bureau," Ahrens
said, "but with a projected shortfall of more than $2.5 million each
year, we simply can't provide quality services for our visitors.
Funding from the federal government and California OHV trust fund
have continually decreased over the past decade, so these new fees
will provide riding opportunities and services requested by our
customers."
Under the recreation fee program, visitors will be charged $20
for a weekly pass or $60 for an annual pass for their primary
vehicle. Ahrens said the pass would be accepted at all four OHV
sites.
"While we are still working out some of the collection method
details," said Ahrens, "we can say we are planning off-site
collection via the Internet and various vendor locations. Weekly
passes purchased off-site will be discounted $5, passing along the
reduced collection cost to the visitor. We will contract to have
self-pay machines, handheld card readers and vendors at on-site
entrance stations for those choosing to purchase weekly passes at the
riding areas."
Congress authorized the Department of Interior and its
subordinate agencies such as the BLM to initiate the Recreation Fee
Demonstration Program in 1996 in order to keep pace with the rising
costs of managing recreation sites.
"This recreation fee demo program stands out among all of our
collection programs because all of the revenues are returned to the
sites to improve the quality of visitor experience," Ahrens said.
Some of the services to be provided by the additional funds will
include increased law enforcement at El Mirage and Dumont Dunes and
increased law enforcement staffing for special events at all of the
sites. Additionally, the funding will provide for additional
emergency medical technicians/park rangers at El Mirage, Dumont Dunes
and special events as well as more maintenance personnel for
maintaining OHV access roads, maintenance on the toilets, signing and
kiosk repairs and litter removal.
"Over the past several years, we have sought input from the
public by holding open houses and public meetings to find out exactly
what kind of opportunities they would like to have and what
improvements are needed," said Ahrens. "So, we can say our customers
have been very involved in determining how the money will be used."
"The Bureau's management of this new recreation fee
demonstration program can only succeed with participation and support
of the off-highway vehicle community," Ahrens said. "The fee
demonstration program provides the recreating public the opportunity
to invest in local BLM facilities and our public lands."
For more information on the Barstow BLM's recreation fee
demonstration program, contact Mike Ahrens at (760) 252-6000 or email
barstowohvfees@ca.blm.gov.
###

--
 

RacerX

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Does the year pass only cover one area or does it cover all 4?
 

desertratt

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if i read it right, it covers all 4 areas
 

sirhk100

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99% of the time I go out there it's not for a desert race. It's with family to ride and have fun. We stay at a cabin that is I guess on the South side of 247 in the area near Howard Dr, Quailbush, Ocotillo Rd... By the large rock piles that they do the trials riding. Anyways, this is actually a "residential" area and the ORV park is on the other side of the highway. We ride from there into the park. Will we need permits? We don't camp in the parks, we just ride in the parks. Our primary vehicles are parked on private property owned by close family friends who are usually there with us...

Khris
 

martininsocal

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Khris- Good question. It doesn't state if the vehicle you are using at the time has to have the permit, or just the primary vehicle you used to get there. I will find out.

Martin
 

empire231

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the passes will probably be just like glamis. at glamis you only need the pass on the dash of the vehicle you drove there, not for the bikes and quads in the trailer. the fees still suck though!
 

frankh

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I really have no problem in this if the money really goes back into those sites. But I really don't think the BLM will let us know where and what the money will be used for. It would be nice to see some dumpsters like at glamis, but I don't see it. I really think the money will just get lost in the books and not for what it was meant for. Mostly they will use it to hire someone new to write reports that will take more of the land from us.
 

sirhk100

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I haven't had a chance to read through this site and see what they're about but check it out... What do you think? It's kinda greenie but still at the same time against the fees... I'll have to look it over tonight after work...

http://freeourforests.org/
 

Jack

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So it sounds like they are going to charge us to raise money to pay for and easyer way to charge us.
 

BradM

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They need the extra revenue to hire more rangers to write tickets for the people who do not have a pass. It is all about the money and it will be used up in bureaucracy. Less than 10% of that monel will actually end up as improvements to the sites it is collected from. More bull$hit from the man.
 

TimHayosh

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What sort of oversight does the public have of the BLM?
For instance: Will the books be open and "un-cook-able"?

Here's what I'd like to see: An accounting of all the "passes" sold. This will result in a gross income for the program. Then, a dollar for dollar accounting of how this income was spent. After one year, a more refined cost for the program could be established, then the cost of the pass could be reduced (or increased). (Also, any money not spent for the purposes expressed at the outset could be applied to the following years budget.) We, the public, could also evaluate our public servants to determine if they are acting in our best interest, with our money.

What I would want to see avoided, is the "we better spend it, or we won't get it next year" mentality that is common in industry and the military. I don't mind paying my fair share to keep these Kalifornia OHV areas open, but I would hate to think that the fees we will pay will just fund yet another layer of bureaucracy.

If the books are not open, then it is clearly "taxation without representation".

$0.02 from an Arizona resident who races in Kalifornia.
 

drtdevil93

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maybe it would be easier for them if they just put a barcode on our heads and scanned us as we go in...

thats funny that they are going to charge at the entrance. i didnt know the desert had an entrance. i assumed that open land was.... open land. how can they say they have public support? i frequent dumont, as well as many of my friends. none of us were ever asked. what are they going to do to serve us? ITS THE FREAKIN DESERT!! we go there to get away from all this crap. geez

erik

"If we can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them, they must become happy." --Thomas Jefferson

"The suppression of unnecessary offices, of useless establishments and expenses enabled us to discontinue internal taxes. These covering our land with officers and opening our doors to their intrusions, had already begun that process of domiciliary vexation which, once entered, is scarcely to be restrained from reaching successively every article of produce and property." --Thomas Jefferson

"Charged with the care of the general interest of the nation, and among these with the preservation of their lands from intrusion, I exercised, on their behalf, a right given by nature to all men, individual or associated, that of rescuing their own property wrongfully taken." --Thomas Jefferson
 

empire231

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they will make sure the dunes and the dirt is well looked after and they will probably supply one or two porta-poties that is regularly cleaned every six months
. also they will make sure that there is a ranger driving around to give you tickets for riding your 50 around camp w/ out a helmet or putting your kid on your lap while cruising the quad to your neighbors camp.
 

drtdevil93

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a ranger is going to look over the land? for what? make sure its not moving? make sure its still sand? so basically the gist of it is this: i need to pay money to go on my own land, so a guy can be paid to stay out there and watch me to make sure i dont do anything wrong (by his own definition of the word). they will also supply me with port-a-potties which become adventures when combined with 115 degree heat. maybe they will put up a new map at the info center, and take down the one with bullet holes in it thats been there for 6 years now. oh, i almost forgot the ranger will make sure i am not going to profit off of pictures i take while out there. (i wonder if i can draw a picture, or if i need to pay for that... is the government against art now?) and this ranger will make sure i dont reuse the pallets i get from work, to make sure that i have to throw them in the trash instead and fill up a trash dump site somewhere. this is getting confusing. i think ill go outside on my patio and watch the sunset now...

erik

"you see this... this is sand, yeah. you know what its gonna be in 100 years? ITS STILL GONNA BE F.ING SAND. ITS CAUSE YOU LIVE IN A DESERT. OHH OHHHHH." - Sam Kinison
 

martininsocal

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Well, unfortunately it will be just like all teh other Fee Demo programs in existence. They will immediately hire more Law Enforcement folks to write tickets to those who don't have passes. They will also use the money to try to save the tortoise because we KILL tortoises, or haven't you read that somewhere? What kills me is this, one of the reasons they gave to get this approved was that they needed a funding source to help with the WEMO plan, but not one of the OPen areas was included in the WEMO plan to begin with and everytime they tried to include an item about one of the open areas into the plan, we made sure it was removed. Now they are using non-WEMO area users to fund their Tortoise recovery plan. So thats what sex with a Turtle feels like...same as sex with the Government!
 
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