My Testimony to the House Subcommittee on Public Lands

If you are really bored, and I mean for values of boredom approaching "Maybe I should pull out my old Menudo albums and give them a listen," you can watch me and others testify to the Public Lands Subcommittee of the House Natural Resources Committee.

As you will be able to tell, I pretty much never do the Washington thing.  there really being nothing much my business needs up there other than to be left alone (unfortunately a vain hope most of the time).

This case is a bit unique.  Fees and recreation on public lands are governed mainly by a certain piece of legislation called FLREA (I won't bother with all the actual words, everyone just calls it FLREA).  The law governs fees the government can charge for public recreation, passes that provide discounts to these fees, etc.

The Forest Service has a unique program (at least among the Federal Lands agencies involved in FLREA) where private concessionaires don't just run a resort, like in the Park Service, but run an entire "park".  This means that, unique to all the other agencies, the Forest Service actually has private companies charging park entry fees ("day use fees") and camping fees.   In theory this should be relatively easy to manage, and the existence of the concession program has never really been an issue in these proceedings, but sometimes in the rush of legislation we are simply forgotten, and rules are written into the law that are simply unworkable for private companies.  A good example in this law is the long fee approval process that could require 18 months to change a fee -- this provision would be a disaster for us because we often have to react to things like changing minimum wages on a couple months notice.

Postscript:  Yes I know -- Moire fail on the tie


  1. Mike Powers:

    But...but you're a private business owner! That means you make JILLIONS of dollars in profit every MONTH! You TOTALLY have enough unearned free money stolen from the public to pay for any wage increases. Maybe you should sell one of the six Learjets that every business owner has at their private airstrip.

    (I remember seeing a Judge Judy episode, where a lady was trying to dig alimony out of some poor bastard. Judge Judy said "well, you're a business owner! You're telling me you don't have any money?" "Judge, I've lost money for the past five years, and I can show you the books to prove it". She was utterly gobsmacked at the idea of a business owner that WASN'T rich.)

  2. Not Sure:

    Of course all business owners have lots of money. Here's conclusive evidence:

  3. Noumenon72:

    Your tie (at 0:38:00) is amazing. Looks like it's teleporting or electrically powered. I wonder if you could sneak a hidden message onto C-SPAN with a carefully disguised moire blending into a different pattern.