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H.R. 4357: Special Forest Products Program Reauthorization Act of 2019

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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Sep 17, 2019.

Special Forest Products Program Reauthorization Act of 2019

This bill directs the Department of Agriculture (USDA) to establish a program of charging and collecting fees for forest botanical products harvested on National Forest System (NFS) lands. Under the program, USDA may not permit forest botanical products to be harvested in excess of sustainable harvest levels.

Collected fees must be in an amount to recover a portion of the fair market value of the harvested forest botanical products and a portion of all of the costs incurred by USDA that are associated with the granting, modifying, or monitoring of the authorization for harvest of the products, including the costs of any environmental or other analysis.

USDA must establish a personal use harvest level for each forest botanical product. The harvesting of a forest botanical product below that level by a person for personal use shall not be subject to the charges and fees under this bill.

USDA shall (1) conduct analyses to determine whether and how the harvest of forest botanical products on NFS lands can be conducted on a sustainable basis, and (2) establish procedures and timeframes for monitoring and revising the harvest levels established for such products.

Funds collected under the program shall be expended at NFS units to pay for the costs of conducting inventories of forest botanical products, determining sustainable levels of harvest, monitoring and assessing the impacts of harvest levels and methods, restoration activities, and authorizing harvest.