43 CFR 21.4 - Occupancy under permit of privately owned cabins on recreation areas and conservation areas.

§ 21.4 Occupancy under permit of privately owned cabins on recreation areas and conservation areas.

(a) In any areas where the Authorized Officer determines that the recreational requirements of the general public are limited, and is an area where private cabin site use has heretofore been permitted, he may extend or renew permits. Each such existing permit and any extension or renewal thereof will be:

(1) Reviewed at least once in every 5-year period to determine that the continued use of the individual cabin site is not inconsistent with the needs of the general public for use of the area. In periodically reviewing whether the existence of private cabin sites conflicts with the best public use of an area, consideration shall be given to (i) existing and projected public need for the area, (ii) compatibility between public uses and private cabin sites, (iii) development potential and plans for the area, and (iv) other relevant factors.

(2) Whenever the Authorized Officer determines that the public need for use of a recreation or conservation area has grown to a point where continued private cabin site use is no longer in the public interest, the procedures set forth in paragraph (b) of this section will be invoked to phase out existing permits by reducing and eliminating renewals, or extensions, consistent with protection of legitimate investment in improvements. These determinations and the reasons therefor shall be published in the Federal Register, together with such other forms of public notice as may be appropriate and necessary as determined by the Authorized Officer.

(3) Except as otherwise provided in an existing permit, no substantial improvement may hereafter be placed on any cabin site under permit without the prior approval of the Authorized Officer, and on such terms as the Authorized Officer may provide, consistent with public need. All renewed or extended permits shall contain this provision. Any such provision shall expressly state that the permission to place a substantial improvement on the site is a limited license subject to public need for the area and does not give the owner of the improvement any interest in the land or any special rights or equities, other than the right to remove the improvement at any time, subject to the land being left in reasonably unimpaired condition. This provision shall expressly stipulate that the owner shall have as a time period within which to amortize his investment in a substantial improvement placed on the site after the date of the regulations in this part, only the period of his existing permit, together with such extensions of his permit as may be granted consistent with the regulations in this part.

(b) Whenever the Authorized Officer determines, pursuant to paragraph (a)(2) of this section that the needs of the general public for a particular public recreation or conservation area are sufficient to be inconsistent with further use of that area for private cabin sites, no further extension, or renewals of permits for any individual site shall, except as otherwise required by law, be granted for any period extending more than 5 years after the effective date of that determination: Provided, however, That, except as otherwise required by law, if an investment was made in a substantial improvement upon a site before the effective date of this part, the extension or renewal of the permit for such site shall be made for a period sufficient to permit 20 years amortization of the investment from the date of the investment in the improvement upon the site, unless the Authorized Officer finds that the needs of the general public for that site require that the extension or renewal be for a lesser period. Thus, for example, if a permit for the site is purchased before the effective date of the regulations in this part with the substantial improvement then in place, for a consideration of $1,000 or more, such amortization period runs from the purchase date, and is not affected, in any event, by the date of the determination under paragraph (a) of this section. The amortization period for any investment in a substantial improvement on or after the effective date of the regulations in this part is covered by paragraph (a)(3) of this section, this paragraph (b), and paragraph (b)(5) of this section.

(1) Any permit, in an area required for general public recreation or conservation use, that expires prior to 5 years after the determination described in this paragraph (b), may, if otherwise authorized by law, be extended to the end of such 5 years if the Authorized Officer determines that such extension is necessary to the fair and efficient administration of this part.

(2) Any renewal or extension of a permit pursuant to this part shall be subject to the condition that the occupant maintain the site and the improvements thereon in a good and serviceable condition, ordinary wear and tear excluded.

(3) Any renewal or extension of a permit shall expressly state its termination date and that there will be no extension or renewal thereafter, except as provided by this part. Permits shall expressly state that they grant no vested property right but afford only a limited license to occupy the land, pending a greater public use.

(4) Upon termination of occupancy under a permit, its renewal or extension, the permittee shall remove his improvements from the site within 90 days from the date of termination, and the land shall be left in reasonably unimpaired condition and as near to its original undisturbed condition as possible. Any property not so removed shall become the property of the United States or may be moved off the site, at the cost of the permittee. Any renewal, or extension, of a permit shall state these requirements.

(5) Voluntary and involuntary transfers of cabin site permits, including by sale, devise, inheritance, or otherwise, may be permitted, subject to approval by the Authorized Officer, subject to the terms, conditions, and restrictions in the permit. No such transfer shall operate to extend the terms of a permit. A transfer after the effective date of the regulations in this part shall give the transferee no rights in addition to those which the transferor had. Where any transfer of a cabin site permit is approved, the approval shall state in writing the requirements of this paragraph, and include the statement that the amortization period for any substantial improvement located on the site shall be limited to the period to which the transferor would have been entitled under the regulations in this part.

(6) Nonuse of a site for a period of more than 2 consecutive calendar years shall terminate the permit without right of renewal (subject to the specific terms of the permit): Provided, however, That where the nonuse is the result of the death, illness, or military service of the permittee the Authorized Officer may waive such nonuse. In such case, sale or transfer of the improvement may be made for the unexpired portion of the permit and subject to the provisions for amortization set forth in this section. The Authorized Officer may make exceptions to this termination provision in any case where he determines that the needs of the general public so require (see introductory text of this paragraph (b)). All permits renewed, or extended after the effective date of this part shall state the requirements of this paragraph.