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Laws, Regulations, and Policies

Policy Development Question

QUESTION:

How and why did Reclamation establish the initial "Concessions Management Policy?" Was there any opportunity for public input?

ANSWER:

In 1993, the Secretary of Interior directed Reclamation to develop a concessions management policy since none existed at that time. This lack of guidance created numerous problems at Reclamation facilities, including health and safety issues. National Park Service concessions management policies and guidelines which had proven successful and beneficial were used as a model for the policy, which was tailored specifically for Reclamation.

Once a final set of draft policies had been developed, a Nationwide public comment period was initiated. Besides publishing notices in local newspapers to encourage written comments, Reclamation conducted eight public meetings throughout the western states near areas that would be impacted by the new policy. Two of these meetings were held near Lake Berryessa - in Folsom on March 4, 1997, and in Fairfield on March 6, 1997.

Comments, concerns, and suggestions received from the public throughout the western United States were reviewed, analyzed, and used to guide policy development. The final policy was approved on April 3, 1998, and was then updated in 2002. The policy will be adjusted in the future as needed to reflect new issues and challenges.