National Park filming legislation - Page 10 at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Special Interest Areas > Under Water, Over Land

Under Water, Over Land
Tools & Techniques for Nature, Outdoors, Wildlife & Underwater Videography.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old September 15th, 2011, 12:37 PM   #136
Major Player
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Sitka Alaska
Posts: 470
Re: National Park filming legislation

It's not just for National Parks. Filming Permits and Fees are required for "all Federal Lands" including Bureau of Land Management. BLM, all Federal Forests, all lands administered by the U.S. Forest Service and Department of Agriculture, Department of Energy, Historical Monuments, and even some navigable inland waters administrated by the Federal Government.

Some Government Agencies enforce the new laws more stringently than others. Stick a pro-sized video camera on a tripod, and eventually you will get some attention from a young, and well armed enforcement officer.

Some states are looking at similar filming restrictions on State Lands.

the world, it's a changing.
David Rice is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 15th, 2011, 12:38 PM   #137
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Hurricane, UT
Posts: 186
Re: National Park filming legislation

Right you are, David. See point 6 of my letter. I'll be discussing this with Mike Lee's office tomorrow morning.
__________________
Get rid of the "Aspiring" in "Aspiring Filmmaker." Shoot it; you're a filmmaker. After that you're just negotiating your budget. (James Cameron paraphrased)
Alex Chamberlain is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 15th, 2011, 02:38 PM   #138
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Winnipeg Manitoba
Posts: 96
Re: National Park filming legislation

Basically these fees, originally disguised as a way to protect the environment from herds of filmmakers, have now been revealed for what they truly are...an income stream. It's truly unfortunate because the government is penalizing people for promoting their resources. Free advertising. I was going to shoot some travel docs down through the U.S. but I might just bee line into Mexico and leave the headaches behind me.
Scott Thibodeau is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 15th, 2011, 03:53 PM   #139
Major Player
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Sitka Alaska
Posts: 470
Re: National Park filming legislation

I talked to a retired US Forest Service Administrator. He told me that the final goal of the US Forest Service is to monitor and track every individual, and activity on Federal Lands in "real Time" using a combination of regulation, permit, and GPS chip which will be attached to the permit. He said the goal was to better control the flow of people, eliminate over use, and better utilize the forest resources. He said that in the name of security, and personal safety, the program will be phased in during the next ten years.

I believe he was telling me the truth.

For filming, I see things getting more restrictive, not less.

Even here in the wilds of Alaska:

Larry Csonka fined $5K for filming without permit

Associated Press

ANCHORAGE, Alaska -- Larry Csonka's mother used to tell him, "Don't make a federal case out of it." Now, he says, he knows what she meant.

Csonka, the host of a cable television show filmed in Alaska, was fined $5,000 on Wednesday for conducting commercial work in a national forest without obtaining a special use permit, a case he said could have been handled administratively.

"The National Forest Service and the prosecutor's office wanted to make an example out of it," he said.

Csonka is host of "NAPA's North to Alaska," a show that appears weekly on OLN and features fishing, hunting, history and customs from around the state.

He called his prosecution "going to the guillotine for running a traffic light."

In January, Csonka reached an agreement to plead guilty to two misdemeanor counts of filming on national forest land without proper permits, once on Mitkoff Island and once last year near Cordova.

Besides fining Csonka the maximum $2,500 on each count, federal Magistrate John Roberts ordered him to pay $3,887 in restitution and placed him on probation for one year. That could be shortened once Csonka completes a public service announcement using footage shot in the Cordova area violation.

Retta Randall, an assistant U.S. attorney, said Csonka and his company, Zonk! Productions, were warned in the first incident that they needed a permit.

"They were told to go to the office to get a permit retroactively," she said. "That did not happen."

In the second, she said, Csonka claimed he relied on a lodge owner to vouch that the area in which filming occurred was not on Forest Service land.

"Frankly, the lodge owner does not do the filming," she said.

She acknowledged that the case would likely be noted by others who use Forest Service land.

"The fine is basically to sort of get his attention, but more importantly, it's to send a message to other film makers who use this land," Randall said.

Audrey Bradshaw, executive producer of the show, said 26 episodes of Csonka's show have been produced annually over nine seasons. Many were shot on Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management or Native Alaskans' land, and that the company consistently has obtained necessary permits, she said.

"There was no intent of skirting the law," she said.

The first incident in 2002 resulted from a miscommunication between a crew in the field and the Zonk! Productions office, Csonka said after sentencing.

"The check was supposed to be sent in," he said. "We thought it had. By the time the accountant caught it, it was too late."

The production company itself reported the second incident after filming scene-setting shots near a glacier and spotting a Forest Service truck drive by.

Csonka said Alaska's patchwork pattern of land ownership creates confusion for people operating in rural Alaska, where ownership can vary widely along a single river.

"I've relied heavily on the information of locals in the areas we visit but in most cases they're as confused about the invisible boundaries of the national forests as I am," he said.

Csonka's attorney, Kevin Fitzgerald, asked Roberts to impose no fine. Between restitution, fees, and possible loss of sponsorships, the demands of the law had been satisfied, he said.

Judge Roberts, however, used a football analogy to address Csonka. He told the Hall of Fame fullback that he needed a game plan in researching land ownership and obtaining permits before taking to the field.

"The way of doing business does not give you license to disregard the law," Roberts said.
David Rice is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 15th, 2011, 06:33 PM   #140
Trustee
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Deep South, U.S.
Posts: 1,380
Re: National Park filming legislation

The Csonka incident was definitely a "lets make an example of them" case. As a federal land manager (now retired) for over 30 years, I can say it is doubtful that this issue will resolved with a fair regulation that is applied equally by all federal agencies. But hey, you got to try. As one who used to administer the "permits" program on the lake I worked I thought a $200 annual fee would be fair. You pay your fee then you are free to go about your business. But, I can't see each federal agency making it that easy and there will be additional red tape and "administrative support" fees. There is always some bureaucrat wanting to make a new position or office to extend an agency's involvement. I watched this happen with my own agency after this thread started where a simple permit to film issued upon walking into the park office has now become a complicated and costly process now handled by one district office in L.A. US Army Corps of Engineers - Los Angeles District - Film Permitting Information

Here is some recent observations. During my filming travels over the past several years doing "stock" video work on federal lands in the southeast I have rarely run into the authorities . In fact with federal budget cuts there are fewer enforcement rangers in the field as most vacancies go unfilled. A one man show filming scenery in a remote area has a pretty good chance of going unobserved. If you are encountered and not working under some type of contract then basically it should be argued that you are a tourist. It is up to them to prove otherwise. With wider use of professional gear for recreational purposes these days, the type gear you use does not in itself indicate that you are a commercial enterprise.

If you are doing a commercial project then by all means get a permit and pass the cost on to your employer. Your employer would probably require location authorization anyway. As a side note I did get permission from the Forest Service a year ago to shoot and produce a DVD for sale at one of their park visitor centers. There was no permit fee involved and they agreed that it would benefit the park. I will hang on to that email authorization for ever.

Also, from what I am reading it might be more reasonably priced to get a permit to commercially film on state land.
__________________
Mark
videos: http://vimeo.com/channels/3523

Last edited by Mark Williams; September 15th, 2011 at 10:20 PM.
Mark Williams is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 22nd, 2011, 12:19 AM   #141
New Boot
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Challenge, CA
Posts: 11
Re: National Park filming legislation

This is just crazy. Small time productions should be exempt from this kind of thing. I just finished a 2 month trip filming in about 12 national parks and the only place we had a problem was in Bryce. The ranger was off-duty and let us off the hook. The crazy thing is my producer called about 3 national parks and they all told him he didn't need a permit since we were just basically running around with a camera and a collapsible reflector.

Oh well, hope he doesn't get fined retroactively.

If there is anything I can do to get a bill passed that makes it clear and simple for us videographers, I will... but I am ticket off by having to pay fees to film on public lands when you aren't disturbing anyone.

What a load of crap... so what are we supposed to do if some day we decide we want to sell stock footage of these places? Get a permit for something we did in the past?
Tim De La Torre is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 22nd, 2011, 10:24 PM   #142
Trustee
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Posts: 1,499
Re: National Park filming legislation

Professional photographers were the smart ones. They were included in the original legislation but lobbied to have professional photographers removed from the bill.
So, we can stand right next to a Nat Geo photographer who can shoot anywhere the public is allowed to go without a permit but because we shoot video, we need one.
__________________
--==Kevin==--
http:filmmakingnaturally.com
Kevin Railsback is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 26th, 2011, 11:31 AM   #143
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Hurricane, UT
Posts: 186
Re: National Park filming legislation

Kevin,
I'm still involved in what I feel are very productive talks with two of my representatives here (Mike Lee, Utah Senator, and Jim Matheson, Utah Representative). For the purpose of my discussion, can you give me a source for the Still Photographer lobbying thing? I think that might be a good thing to show them. Thanks!
__________________
Get rid of the "Aspiring" in "Aspiring Filmmaker." Shoot it; you're a filmmaker. After that you're just negotiating your budget. (James Cameron paraphrased)
Alex Chamberlain is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 26th, 2011, 12:10 PM   #144
Trustee
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Posts: 1,499
Re: National Park filming legislation

It was NANPA ( North American Nature Photography Association )that lobbied to have still photographers excluded from the law.

When this all happened to me with Yellowstone, I talked to then president Susan Clark about it.
But it would talk to the NANPA people. They were the ones that had photographers removed because they were initially on the original bill.
__________________
--==Kevin==--
http:filmmakingnaturally.com
Kevin Railsback is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 26th, 2011, 12:18 PM   #145
Trustee
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Posts: 1,499
Re: National Park filming legislation

Their URL is North American Nature Photography Association - NANPA
I know when I talked to Susan about it, some NANPA members were starting to talk about it since video was starting to be incorporated into DSLR's.
So as more photographers started adding video to their portfolio the topic was being tossed around since by flicking a switch, the would be breaking the law.
__________________
--==Kevin==--
http:filmmakingnaturally.com
Kevin Railsback is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 27th, 2011, 03:26 PM   #146
Trustee
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Posts: 1,499
Re: National Park filming legislation

Uh, how about Kathy Adams Clark
Don't know where the heck I got Susan from!!
__________________
--==Kevin==--
http:filmmakingnaturally.com
Kevin Railsback is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 28th, 2011, 02:14 PM   #147
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: San Jose, CA
Posts: 144
Re: National Park filming legislation

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin Railsback View Post
So as more photographers started adding video to their portfolio the topic was being tossed around since by flicking a switch, the would be breaking the law.
As I read through this thread that is all I could think about. Today there is a very very fuzzy line between photography and videography. One minute I am snapping away at the grizzly and her cubs, the next I am rolling some video as they cross the river. Where do I fit in? I have the exact same footprint as shooting the video as I did shooting the photos. Heck, I didn't even have to reach in my bag to grab a different camera to put on my tripod! The government does not understand this. Not sure if that is a good or bad thing, but flying under the radar with a dslr to shoot some video may be one way around this madness.
__________________
www.elkinseye.com
David Elkins is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 9th, 2011, 12:42 PM   #148
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Hurricane, UT
Posts: 186
Re: National Park filming legislation

Just got off the phone with Senator Mike Lee's office, and they are contacting NANPA to see if they're interested in being listed as a group that supports this legislation. They've also asked me to try to gather evidence of support. So my question is this: What form could we use to show evidence of a number of people who would support a change in the law here? I could create a Google Doc that we could all list our names/contact info. if everyone would feel comfortable with that, or is there a more effective way? At the very least, I'd like to quote some of the sentiments from this thread. Thoughts? Thanks!
__________________
Get rid of the "Aspiring" in "Aspiring Filmmaker." Shoot it; you're a filmmaker. After that you're just negotiating your budget. (James Cameron paraphrased)
Alex Chamberlain is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 9th, 2011, 02:16 PM   #149
Trustee
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Posts: 1,499
Re: National Park filming legislation

I see NANPA has added video to their Filming on Public Lands position as something that should not require a permit.
http://www.nanpa.org/docs/PublicLandsAccess.pdf
__________________
--==Kevin==--
http:filmmakingnaturally.com
Kevin Railsback is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 9th, 2011, 04:09 PM   #150
Trustee
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Deep South, U.S.
Posts: 1,380
Re: National Park filming legislation

It might be good to see what Chris Hurd thinks about allowing the petition link as a new thread.
__________________
Mark
videos: http://vimeo.com/channels/3523

Last edited by Mark Williams; November 9th, 2011 at 10:23 PM.
Mark Williams is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Special Interest Areas > Under Water, Over Land

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:05 AM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network