Federal Subsistence Board adopts Policy on Nonrural Determinations

The Federal Subsistence Board (Board), at its January 10-12, 2017 meeting in Anchorage, adopted a Policy on Nonrural Determinations, which outlines the administrative process by which any individual, organization, or community may submit proposals for future nonrural determinations. The policy describes the internal management of nonrural determinations by the Board and provides transparency to the public regarding the process of making or rescinding nonrural determinations of communities or areas. 

Last edited 01/18/2017
Contact Information

Caron McKee

(907) 786-3880 or (800) 478-1456


During deliberations at the meeting, the Board modified the policy to accept nonrural determination proposals every other fish and shellfish regulatory cycle, which results in a 4-year period for proposal submission, review, analysis, Regional Advisory Council input, tribal and Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act corporation consultation, public comment, and Board deliberation and decision.

The Secretaries of the Interior and Agriculture published a Final Rule on November 4, 2015, revising the regulations governing the rural determination process for the Federal Subsistence Management Program in Alaska. The Secretaries removed specific guidelines and criteria, including requirements regarding population data, the aggregation of communities, and a decennial review. The final rule allowed the Board to make nonrural determinations using a comprehensive approach that may consider such factors as population size and density, economic indicators, military presence, industrial facilities, use of fish and wildlife, degree of remoteness and isolation, and any other relevant material, including information provided by Regional Advisory Councils and the public. Communities or areas in Alaska not included in the Board’s nonrural determinations, therefore, are considered rural in relation to the Federal subsistence priority.

Additional information on the Federal Subsistence Management Program may be found on the web at www.doi.gov/subsistence or by visiting www.facebook.com/subsistencealaska.

Missing out on the latest Federal subsistence issues? If you’d like to receive emails and notifications on the Federal Subsistence Management Program you may subscribe for regular updates by emailing fws-fsb-subsistence-request@lists.fws.gov.


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