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Additional Material Submitted for the Record

United Mobile Sportfishermen. Ie.

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Member Organizations:
Assateague Mobile Sportishermen • Cape Hanteras Anglers Club • Cape Lookout Mobile Sportshermen

Delaware Mobile Surfishermen • East End Anglers Club • Farrague Striper Club
Great South Beach Mobile Sportishermen • Happy Hookers Fishing Club • Hartord Surf Club • Long Island Beach Buggy Association

Massachusetts Beach Buggy Association Mobile Sportlishermen of Connecticut • Montauk Surfcasters Association
Nags Head Fishing Club • New Jersey Bench Buggy Association • North Carolina Beach Buggy Association
Rhode Island Mobile Sportlishermen • Thundermise Striper Club

National Coalition for Marine Conservation National Outdoor Coalition United Four Wheel Drive Associations

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Vice President
Robert Campbell
1412 Arendell Street
Morehead City, NC 28557
1919) 726-4247

Treasurer Conrad E Smith 15 Bow Street Woburn, MA 01801 (617) 933-6847

Bruce L Wolfson
6 Kenilworth Drive
East Northport, NY 11731
(516) 261.4892

This letter is submitted for the record of
your subcommittee oversight hearing on recreation
fees authorized by the Land ana Water Conservation
Hund Act (LVCFA) which is scheduled for June 27.

For some time now we have been concerned with the

a rastic rise in "special recreation permit" fees Secretary

(authorized under 16 USC 460 1-68 ) which our
members are charged in order to gain access to coastal
beaches gaministered by the Department of Interior,
in order to pursue taeir sport.

Although we have brought this concern to the
attention of the be part ment in an April 24, 1984
letter, we have veen orally tola tnst they have

institutea a nationwide review of the user fee issue and these concerns will oe included in that review. We have not been aavised or rejeive, any other response to the particular issues raised on this matter ana are hopeful that your oversight hearing will leau to restoration of some equity for our members.

Membership Secretary
Dave Zeloski
7 Cottonwood Drive
Hudson, NH 03051
(603) 883-3884

Our 10,000 members use an over-senu vehicle (a 4 wheel drive or bkv in ftaeral language) for access to coastal beaches in order to gain access to otherwise remote ana inaccessible sections of the shore in order to locate fish and to keep up with moving schools. On feaeral beaches this occurs on lanas of the national seashores/recreation areas of the lational Park Service and national wildlife refuges of the rish and Wildlife Service. This use has existed for several generations; both before and after many of these areas were administerea by the federal government.


It is for this reason we call ourselves mobile sport fishermen. The over-sana vehicle allows the sportfisherman to reach areas that woulu not be accessible to the fisherman on foot ana required to walk in chest nigh waders and carry all the eouipment of tne sport. It provides a thoroughly enjoyable and successful recreation experience toat is not availaole to the fisherman traveling by "Shank's mare". For the very young, aged and disabled it allows access that is otherwise aeniea.

Our members supporte, creation of many of these areas in order to preserve a recreational way of life and most of the area enabling acts recognize and provide that fishing is an acceptable use. Without the venicle access, sportfishing woula oe severely restrictta to an area pörhaps { mile distant from the access point with the majority of ine shore inaccessible and fishing therefore denied.

There is a question in our mina as to whether Congress intended that a fee should be charged for the only means of practical access . to public lanas in order to pursue a sport that a national sea shore enabling act explicitly requires shall be allowed. The vehicle use existed prior to creation of these seashores and the Congress knew of it and it's purpose. It would seem to us that with this inowledge ana by providing for continued fishing access in the act establishing the seashore, that congress accepted and authorized this means of access in recognition of it's practical considerations. This belief seems to be confirmei by 16 USC 460 1-6(a)(4! which specifically requires that "no fees of any kind shall be collected from any persons who have a right of access for hunting or fishing privileges under a specific provision of law ..."Yet federal ORV permit fees are being collectea for this access privilege, and frustrate this public access policy.

Às snortfishermen we know that you authored creation of tne wallop-Breaux Funa and of your successful efforts to overturn the OMB impounament of these funds. We are very appreciative of your aecisive efforts on our behalf. The W-B Funa created a user fee we can understand and support. As contributors to the funa we will see a beneficial return of our contributions. As the saying goes "sportsmen pay for conservation", and we are ouite willing to continue.

With regard to ORV permit ftes for mobilesportfishing access, there has been no aiscernaole cost to the federal government to provide the access, nor a return to the contributor for his contribution. It is viewed simply as a tax to raise revenues.

vie recommena that the LVCFA be revised to allow user fees to be retained at the area wnert it is collected ana to oe used for the venefit of the uses for which tre fee is imposed, vinere policy requires provision for a use, no fee shoula be charged for the means of accessing that use unless a feaeral expense is incurred; in which cast the fee shoula not exceed the expense.


We also sugzest that if the administration's policy of user fues is to be expanded that backpackers and other users of public lands, incluai:g wilderness areas also contribute their eouitable share. we feel tae present provisions of the LHCPA selectively apply a fee to certain users while allowing others to escape and is taerefore aiscriminatory.Our members give generously of their tine, labor, fuel and equipment costs in performing conservation proiects on federal lands which woula otherwise go undone or reouire expenditure of fea erai funds. Perhans these contributions also merit consideration in a user fee structure.

There is also a nuea to consider application of the golden Eagle ana loluen age Passport concept to "special recreation permit" users so that retirees and others who visit more than one national seasnore or other feaeral area are not assessed more tnan their equitable share of costs, especially when there are no material ftueral costs connected with the privilege.

enclosed for your information is a copy of our letter of april 24,1984 to the assistant Secretary of Interior for Fish, Wilalife anu Parks referred to earliur. It aetails our grievances with user fees at Assat cague Island National Seashore. Many of the points raised are applicable el sewntre.

We trust your oversight hearings will produce substantive results that so far we have been unable to obtain from the Le pa rtment. That they provide impetus through Congressional direction for movement by the department to correct the i nequities we believe exist.

We are appreciative of your interest in this matter ana of the opportunity you have providea to offer our comment.

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P.S. incloseä also is a copy of a vec.27,1984 letter to Senator Mathias fron George T. English Jr (not a member of our organization, which is one of a series of letters to the Senator on the same issue at a National Wildlife Sefuge.


3508 Woodridge Avenue
Silver Spring, Maryland 20902
December 27, 1984

The Honorable Charles McC. Mathias
United States Senator
Weber Building, Suite 212
9420 Annapolis Road
Lanham, Maryland 20760

Re: Your transmittal letter dated

Movember 26, 1984

Dear Senator Mathias:

I want to thank you for your assistance in securing a reply from the Fish and Wildlife Service (FHS) to my complaint about the management of off-road vehicles (ORV's) at the Chincoteague Mational Wildlife Refuge (H!!R). Although I appreciate receiving the organization's answer to my letter of October 4, 1984, which stated specific MR management abuses, I do not agree that FWS reply dated November 19, 1984 was responsive to my concerns. In this letter, I will separate my rejoinder into (1) legal/user equity issues, and (2) ecological/environmental protection issues.

The FHS reply did not mention the fraudulent aspect of the present Chincoteague NOIR ORV management plan. To "oversell" access or charge one distinct group of users fees for access while not charging other distinct user groups fees for access to Assateague Island is blatant discrimination against the penalized group. Ito fees are charged to non-ORV users of the Chincoteague fline, but ORV users who wish to drive in the designated beach areas are first required to purchase a weeklv permit for $10 or an annual permit for $35. In contrast, the National Park Service (HPS) charges all vehicles $2 for daily access or $10 for an annual permit (i..e, the "Golden Eagle") to visit our national parks. Hence, it is hard to accept the notion that all of the costs for providing access to Assateaque Islar:d are due only to FS' provision of added services for the small number of OP.Y users, while the vast majority of other users (who require facilities, life guards, trash cans, paved pa:ds/parking areas, etc.) are responsible for none of the cost. Other than a Diorked ramp over the primary dune, two air stations, and a few signs along the beach, ORV owners receive no more services than do other users from the ...?. Consequentiy, it is my conclusion that the fees charged to ORV users are deliberately designed to be discriminatory and punitive.

If the FHS were truly concerned about equitable treatment of the public, it would charge all users the same basic access fee, with a modest surcharge for those ORV users who desire to use the designated ORV beach areas. Accordingly, I propose that FWS charge all vehicular users (except bicycles) the same fee for access to Chincoteague HR as does the NPS for access to the national parks (i.e., $2 daily/S10 annually). An additional si daily/55

annually should be charged to ORV users desiring access to the designated beaches. In any case, the daily access fee and ORV surcharge should not be collected if vehicular access is limited because of crowded conditions, as occasionally occurs during summer weekend periods. Furthermore, current !PS "Golden Eagle" pass and Federal waterfowi stamp (i.e., duck stamp) holders should be allowed free entry to fwRs.

With respect to the F:/S reply to my criticism of the 12 vehicle per mile standard used to limit access to the designated ORV beach areas, the FIS reply did not provide any supporting documentation for its position. Pio mention was made of previous studies conducted to support the imposition of the 12 vehicle per mile "standard," only the need to conduct new studies if the so-called "standard" were to be exceeded. that proof is there tha: 13 or 23 vehicles per mile would irreparably harm the environment? Consequently, the FWS "standard" is arbitrary and capricious!

Before denying access to the tax paying citizens, the FHS managers ought to be sure of their facts! In support of my assertion that their "standard" is indefensible, I suggest that they visit the Hatteras Island National Seash in North Carolina, specifically the Cape Point be ch area where unlimited/ur.controlled ORV access is permitted by the National Park Service. ito fees are charged, no inspection of vehicles is required, and no services other than planked ramps over the primary dune and a fish cleaning table are provided. Despite the extremely heavy ORY use of this area, the plentiful number of sea birds which abound at Cape Point belies any suspicion that the IPS is derelict in performing its duties through its low-key management approach!

Finally, the use of Executive Orders 11644 and 11989 as a substitute for Congressional Legislation is suspiciously like "government-by-decree" that characterizes many third world and most socialist governments. The iPS seems to interpret its mandate under these Executive Orders far differentlv than does the Futs, thus the dichotomy in the management approaches for ORV's at Cape Hatteras versus Assateague Island. Management of our natural resources does not have to mean absolute totalitarian control, as the difference in ORV mariagement philosophies between these tivo Department of Interior agencies indicates. The PUR areas under F!IS supervision were not established initially vich the intent of fostering discrimination and extortion upon one group of visitors under the guise of "protecting the environment." Assessad fees should reflect actual costs and should be charged equitably to all users of !!! facilities, not just ORV operators desiring access to the designated beach


I suggest that the Congress investigate and rectify the bureaucratic abuses which the arbitrary and discriminatory behavior of the Fish and Hildlife Service has caused by its government-by-decree (i.e., administrative fiat) approach to citizens' legitimate rights.

Thank you for your continued. assistance in resolving this matter.


George T. English, Jr.


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