Commercial Use Authorizations

CUA Program Updates

We are now issuing 2-year CUAs effective January 01, 2023 and expiring 12/31/2024.  No matter when you apply for your CUA, the expiration date will be 12/31/2024.

We have also implemented a CUA application acceptance window
CUA applications will only be accepted between Oct 1 – March 31.  This is a 6-month window to submit your application.  Applications will not be accepted after March 31. 
There will be an application window for each year of the 2-year CUA, so if you miss the first window, you can apply for the second year.  But it will still expire 12/31/2024.

Ex: Apply between Oct 1, 2022 – March 31, 2023 for a CUA that expires 12/31/2024
Or, apply between Oct 1, 2023 – March 31, 2024 for a CUA, but that will also expire 12/31/2024.


The 2-year CUA Application Fee will be $300.00 for all CUA categories.

 

 

Apply for 2023 CUA

Applications will only be accepted between October 1, 2022 - March 31, 2023.

CUAs will be issued for two years and expire December 31, 2024

2023 CUA Application
 

2022 Annual Reports

Submit your completed Annual Report to: grca_permits_mail@nps.gov
Use the subject line format "[CUA Name - CUA Number] - 2022 Annual Report"
*You must submit a separate Annual Report for each issued CUA*

Complete your 2022 Annual Report Now
 
 
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What is a Commercial Use Authorization (CUA)?

Section 418 of the National Parks Omnibus Management Act of 1998 authorizes the NPS to issue CUAs to authorize a private person, corporation, or other entity to provide commercial visitor services in parks. Without a CUA, other permit, contract, or other written agreement with the United States, such activities otherwise are prohibited under 36 CFR § 5.3.

A commercial use authorization (CUA) allows you to conduct commercial activities and provide specific visitor services within a national park unit. Services provided to NPS employees are not covered by CUAs (e.g., Schwan's grocery delivery). Commercial Use Authorizations (CUAs) are required for all commercial visitor services provided by a company or organization not based in the park.

What Laws Govern CUAs?

Congress enacted the 1998 Concessions Management Improvement Act (Public Law 105-391) to improve commercial services in the NPS. The law outlines the requirement for CUAs and provides the framework for the NPS CUA program.
The 1998 Act authorizes the NPS to issue CUAs only for appropriate visitor services and requires the NPS to:

  1. Collect a reasonable fee that recovers the NPS’s costs for the administration and management of the CUA, at a minimum.
  2. Take appropriate steps to limit the liability of the United States arising from the provision of visitor services under the CUA.
  3. Limit for-profit CUAs for services originating and provided solely within an NPS unit (in-park CUAs) to operations with annual gross receipts of no more than $25K.
  4. Limit CUAs for services originating and terminating outside an NPS unit to incidental use of park resources.
  5. Only issue CUAs for commercial services that will have no more than minimal impact on resources and values of the park.
  6. Prohibit CUAs from constructing any structure, fixture, or improvement on NPS-managed lands.
  7. Limit the CUA term to a maximum two years with no renewal rights.
  8. Limit the number of CUAs or establish limiting conditions to ensure preservation and proper management of park resources and values.

A CUA does not exempt the holder or clients from NPS entrance fee requirements nor does it grant automatic access to areas controlled by reservation systems.

What Policies Govern CUAs?

In order to implement the requirements of the law, the NPS has a specific set of Management Policies that guide agency operations. These policies are an indispensable tool to help NPS employees manage parks responsibly and make rational, well-informed decisions. Chapter 10 of NPS Management Policies provides management guidance specific to commercial visitor services, including CUAs.

On December 13, 2021, NPS issued updated CUA guidance to assist superintendents in understanding how to implement the NPS Management Policies and guide them in managing CUAs. That updated guidance, included in the NPS Commercial Service Guide (Chapter 11 - CUAs), consolidates and supercedes the previously issued CUA guidance

Who Needs a CUA?

CUAs are required if an operator provides goods or services to park visitors that:

  1. take place at least in part on property managed by the NPS;
  2. use park resources; and
  3. are for the purpose of monetary gain or profit.

You must be in possession of a valid CUA to conduct business in Grand Canyon National Park.

Grand Canyon National Park CUA Revocation and Suspension Policy

This policy memorandum is intended to provide guidance regarding the actions taken in the event of a permittee violation (as defined in this policy). The Superintendent, at his or her discretion, may take actions other than those identified and retains the authority to immediately suspend, restrict or revoke a CUA or deny a future CUA application for reasons not covered in this policy memorandum.

 
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Last updated: December 1, 2022

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Mailing Address:

PO Box 129
Grand Canyon , AZ 86023

Phone:

928-638-7888

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