A group called the Southern Forest Watch has recently sent a letter notifying officials at the National Park Service that it intends to file a lawsuit challenging the $4 per-person, per-night, backcountry camping fee approved last March. The letter, sent by Knoxville attorney J. Myers Morton, was mailed to Dale Ditmanson, Great Smoky Mountains National Park superintendent; Ken Salazar, secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior; Jon Jarvis, director of the National Park Service; as well as Congressional Representatives and Senators from Tennessee and North Carolina.
A proposal for a new backcountry fee system was announced in July of 2011, and immediately created a firestorm of controversy and debate within the backpacking community.
The Southern Forest Watch group argues that the backcountry camping fee is illegal under several federal statutes, including the Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act and the Administrative Procedures Act, and intends to file the lawsuit after the fee goes into effect in early 2013.
You can read the full document by clicking here.
What are your thoughts? Is this a relevant lawsuit, or a waste of taxpayer dollars?