(a) Fees shall be charged for all livestock grazing or livestock use of National Forest system lands, or other lands under Forest Service control. An exception is livestock authorized free of charge under provisions of §222.3(c)(2)(ii) (B) through (G).
(b) Guiding establishment of fees are the law and general governmental policy as established by Bureau of the Budget (now, Office of Management and Budget) Circular A-25 of September 23, 1959, which directs that a fair market value be obtained for all services and resources provided the public through establishment of a system of reasonable fee charges, and that the users be afford equitable treatment. This policy precludes a monetary consideration in the fee structure for any permit value that may be capitalized into the permit holder's private ranching operation.
(c) A grazing fee shall be charged for each head month of livestock grazing or use. A head month is a month's use and occupancy of range by one animal, except for sheep or goats. A full head month's fee is charged for a month of grazing by adult animals; if the grazing animal is weaned or 6 months of age or older at the time of entering National Forest System lands; or will become 12 months of age during the permitted period of use. For fee purposes 5 sheep or goats, weaned or adult, are equivalent to one cow, bull, steer, heifer, horse, or mule.
(d) No additional charge will be made for the privilege of lambing upon National Forest System lands, or other lands under Forest Service control.
(e) Transportation livestock may be charged for at a special rate, and at a minimum established for such use. Fees for horses, mules, or burros associated with management of permitted livestock on an allotment, or for research purposes and administrative studies, and authorized on a charge basis, are determined under provisions of paragraph (b) of this section.
(f) The fees for trailing livestock across National Forest System lands will conform with the rates established for other livestock. Where practicable, fees for trailing permitted livestock will be covered in the regular grazing fee and the crossing period covered in the regular grazing period.
(g) All fees for livestock grazing or livestock use of National Forest System lands or other lands under Forest Service control are payable in advance of the opening date of the grazing period, entry, or livestock use unless otherwise authorized by the Chief, Forest Service.
(h) Unauthorized grazing use rate will be determined by establishing a base value without giving consideration for those contributions normally made by the permittee under terms of the grazing permit. The base will be adjusted annually by the same indexes used to adjust the regular fee. This rate will also apply to excess number of livestock grazing by permittees; to livestock grazed outside the permitted grazing season; or to livestock grazed under an unvalidated permit.
(i) Refunds or credits may be allowed under justifiable conditions and circumstances as the Chief, Forest Service, may specify.
(j) The fee year for the purpose of charging grazing fees will be March 1 through the following February.
(k) The data year for the purpose of collecting beef cattle price data for computing indexes will be November 1 through the following October and apply to the following fee year.
[44 FR 24843, Apr. 27, 1979, as amended at 46 FR 42450, Aug. 21, 1981; 53 FR 2984, Feb. 2, 1988]