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Mid-Pacific Region
Sacramento, Calif.
Media Contact:
Jeffrey McCracken
916-978-5100

Released On: April 07, 2008

Reclamation Announces Public Review and Comment Period for Phase II of Proposed Fee Changes at New Melones Lake

The Bureau of Reclamation announces a public review and comment period for Phase II of a proposed new fee schedule at New Melones Lake under the Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act (REA), Public Law 108-447, Title VIII.  Under REA, New Melones is the first Reclamation-managed recreation area authorized to retain revenues collected on-site to enhance recreation facilities and services.  Prior to REA, all revenues collected at New Melones went to the Federal Treasury.  New Melones plans to implement changes to its fee program in two phase, Phase I and Phase II. 

The comment period for Phase I ended on April 4, 2008.  Reclamation is now consolidating the comments received on the proposed Phase I fees which may include:

  • Proposed camping fees of $18 for standard campsites (a $2 increase).
  • Proposed camping fees of $14 for walk-in campsites (a $2 increase).
  • Proposed RV dump stations fees of $8 for registered campers and $15 for other users.

A decision on the proposed Phase I fees will soon be announced and posted on the New Melones website at http://www.usbr.gov/mp/ccao/field_offices/new_melones/index.html.  Implementation of the new Phase I fees is scheduled to begin on Thursday, May 1, 2008. 

Reclamation is now seeking public input on the proposed Phase II fees as well as ideas on how New Melones should use the revenues generated, within the guidelines specified under REA and in accordance with Reclamation authorities.  The  proposed Phase II fees and potential use of fee revenues may be viewed in the Initial Plan for Phased Implementation of the 2005 Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act (Draft) on the New Melones website at http://www.usbr.gov/mp/ccao/field_offices/new_melones/REA/index.html.  If you have problems accessing the document online, please contact Ms. Lynnette Wirth at 916-978-5102 or lwirth@mp.usbr.gov.  The draft plan is also available at the New Melones Lake Visitors Center, 6850 Studhorse Flat Road, Sonora, CA, open Wednesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.  The proposed Phase II fees may include:

  • Proposed day-use fee of $6.
  • Proposed boat-launching fee of $8 (includes the $6 day-use fee).
  • Proposed Annual Day Use pass for $40.
  • Proposed Annual Boat Launch pass for $60.
  • Proposed daily campers’ overflow vehicles/visitors fee of $6 (includes the $6 day-use fee).
  • Federal Interagency Annual Pass Program.

The Phase II comment period will close on Friday, June 6, 2008.  Comments will then be reviewed and a decision will be made and announced regarding the final fee schedule for Phase II.  The decision will also be posted on the New Melones website at http://www.usbr.gov/mp/ccao/field_offices/new_melones/index.html.  At that time, the Initial Plan for Phased Implementation of the 2005 Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act (Draft) will be finalized and posted on the website.  Phase II implementation is scheduled to begin on Wednesday, October 1, 2008. 

Written comments on the proposed Phase II fees should be mailed by Friday, June 6, 2008, to Mr. Jeff Laird, Bureau of Reclamation, 6850 Studhorse Flat Road, Sonora, CA  95370, or e-mailed to jlaird@mp.usbr.gov, or faxed to 209-536-9652.  For additional information, please contact Mr. Laird at 209-536-9094 x229.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at www.usbr.gov.