November 7, 1997
The Administration opposes H.R. 838 that would amend the Hells Canyon National
Recreation Area Act to require the U.S. Forest Service to permit access by
motorized river craft to the entire length of the Snake River within the Hells
Canyon National Recreation Area (HCNRA). The bill would require that access be
permitted throughout the year.
H.R. 838 would require the Forest Service to change the river management plan that is currently being adopted after many years of development. Regulations specifically addressing the standards for the use of motorized and nonmotorized craft in the HCNRA were issued in 1994. These standards were the subject of extensive public comment. The final rule strikes a careful balance between preserving the area's unique natural resource values and the continued use of motorized and nonmotorized river craft. The Forest Service's river management planning process should be permitted to complete its course.
H.R. 838 would affect off-setting receipts; therefore, it is subject to the pay-as-you-go requirements of the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1990. OMB's preliminary scoring estimate of this bill is that any scoring implications would be negligible.