Knox Co. commission supports banning Smokies backcountry fee

Knox Co. commission supports banning Smokies backcountry fee

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KNOXVILLE (WATE) - Knox County Commissioners voted 10-1 Monday to express support for a Blount County Commission resolution to oppose the backcountry camping fee for the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

The $4 fee is required for any park visitor wishing to camp in the backcountry areas of the park overnight.

The fee took effect on Feb. 13.

The Southern Forest Watch, which has filed suit against the fee, claims it was put into place despite significant public protest and that it will "restrict and impair use of the Smoky Mountain backcountry."

In a statement the organization released Monday, the organization said, "Southern Forest Watch is appreciative of the efforts of these elected bodies to represent the voices of their constituents."

The Swain County North Carolina Commission passed a similar resolution of support earlier in March.

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