Ernest F. Hollings ACE Basin National Wildlife Refuge, Charleston, Beaufort, Colleton, and Hampton Counties, SC, 66672-66673 [E9-29869]

Download as PDF srobinson on DSKHWCL6B1PROD with NOTICES 66672 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 240 / Wednesday, December 16, 2009 / Notices In addition to the Daisy Town buildings, the exterior of the Chapman cabin in the ‘‘Society Hill’’ portion of the District will be restored to the early 20th century period of significance and retained for interpretive purposes, the exterior of the Spence cabin in ‘‘Millionaire’s Row’’ will also be restored and its interior rehabilitated for public rental and day use. The gravel pathway from the Appalachian Clubhouse to Jakes Creek Cemetery will be restored. Historic plantings that are not invasive would be retained throughout the District. To provide access and circulation, existing parking areas will be reconfigured and resurfaced, and a new day use parking area will be constructed. Altogether, 30 buildings identified as contributing to the District’s significance will be removed. Buildings slated for removal include the Wonderland Hotel Annex, 26 cabins, and 3 garages. The remains of the structurally failed Wonderland Hotel were removed in December 2006. The preserved buildings and cultural landscape features, along with wayside exhibits and other interpretive media, will be used to enhance visitor understanding of the history and development of the Elkmont vacation community, its architecture, and the area’s important cultural and natural resources. To increase species diversity, improve and increase wildlife habitat, and provide soil stabilization within the District, the NPS will restore native plant communities in suitable areas, including the sites where buildings have been removed. Removal of buildings within the Little River floodplain would allow for gradual succession to native communities. The selected alternative will not generate wastewater discharge above the permitted allowable level from the sewage treatment plant or contribute nonpoint runoff into the Little River or its tributaries. No additional structures or activities within the 100-year floodplain are proposed. The approved plan enhances opportunities for visitors to interact with and appreciate the historic district’s resources while providing for the preservation or adaptive use of the park’s resources when implemented. The Record of Decision includes a description of the project’s background, a statement of the decision made, synopses of other alternatives considered, the basis for the decision, findings on impairment of park resources and values, a description of the environmentally preferred alternative, a listing of measures to VerDate Nov<24>2008 16:18 Dec 15, 2009 Jkt 220001 minimize environmental harm, and an overview of public involvement in the decision-making process. DATES: The ROD was signed by the Regional Director, NPS, Southeast Region, on June 30, 2009. ADDRESSES: Copies of the ROD are available from the Superintendent, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, 107 Park Headquarters Road, Gatlinburg, Tennessee 37738; telephone: 865–436–1201. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The NPS evaluated six other alternatives for the treatment and management of the District in the GMPA/EIS. These alternatives are described in full in the FEIS/GMPA. Among the alternatives considered, the selected alternative best protects the diversity of park resources while also maintaining a range of quality visitor experiences, meets NPS purposes and goals for the Elkmont Historic District of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and meets National Environmental Policy Act goals. The selected alternative will not result in the impairment of park resources and will allow the NPS to conserve park resources and provide for their enjoyment by visitors. Authority: The authority for publishing this notice is 40 CFR 1506.6 (b). FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Contact the Superintendent, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, at the address and telephone number shown above. An electronic copy of the document is available on the Internet at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/. The responsible official for this FEIS is the Regional Director, Southeast Region, National Park Service, 100 Alabama Street, SW., 1924 Building, Atlanta, Georgia 30303. Dated: October 5, 2009. David Vela, Regional Director, Southeast Region. [FR Doc. E9–29853 Filed 12–15–09; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–70–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service [FWS–R4–R–2009–N186; 40136–1265–0000– S3] Ernest F. Hollings ACE Basin National Wildlife Refuge, Charleston, Beaufort, Colleton, and Hampton Counties, SC AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability: Final comprehensive conservation plan and finding of no significant impact. PO 00000 Frm 00059 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the availability of our final comprehensive conservation plan (CCP) and finding of no significant impact (FONSI) for the environmental assessment for Ernest F. Hollings ACE Basin National Wildlife Refuge (ACE Basin NWR). In the final CCP, we describe how we will manage this refuge for the next 15 years. ADDRESSES: You may obtain a copy of the CCP by writing to: Mr. Van Fischer, Refuge Planner, South Carolina Lowcountry Refuge Complex, 5801 Highway 17 North, Awendaw, SC 29429. You may also access and download the document from the Service’s Web site: http:// southeast.fws.gov/planning. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Van Fischer; telephone: 843/928–3264; E-mail: van_fischer@fws.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Introduction With this notice, we finalize the CCP process for ACE Basin NWR. We started this process through a notice in the Federal Register on January 3, 2007 (72 FR 141). For more about the process, see that notice. ACE Basin NWR was established on September 20, 1990, and was renamed the Ernest F. Hollings ACE Basin National Wildlife Refuge on May 16, 2005. The refuge is a partner in the ACE Basin Task Force, a coalition consisting of the Service, the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources, Ducks Unlimited, The Nature Conservancy, The Low Country Open Land Trust, Mead Westvaco, and private landowners of the ACE Basin system. The refuge’s two separate units (Edisto and Combahee) are further broken down into subunits, with the Edisto Unit containing the Barrelville, Grove, and Jehossee subunits; and the Combahee Unit containing the Bonny Hall, Combahee Fields, and Yemassee subunits. The refuge is divided into 9 management units or compartments, ranging in size from 350 to 3,355 acres. Compartment boundaries are established along geographic features that can be easily identified on the ground (i.e., rivers, roads, and trails). We announce our decision and the availability of the final CCP and FONSI for ACE Basin NWR in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) [40 CFR 1506.6(b)] requirements. We completed a thorough analysis of impacts on the human environment, which we included in the Draft Comprehensive Conservation Plan and Environmental Assessment (Draft CCP/EA). The CCP will guide us in managing and administering ACE Basin E:\FR\FM\16DEN1.SGM 16DEN1 Federal Register / Vol. 74, No. 240 / Wednesday, December 16, 2009 / Notices NWR for the next 15 years. Alternative C is the foundation for the CCP. The compatibility determinations for upland game hunting, fishing/boating, wildlife observation and photography, environmental education and interpretation, bicycling, research, exotic and nuisance wildlife control, forest management—commercial timber harvest, and cooperative farming are also available in the CCP. Background The National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act of 1966 (16 U.S.C. 668dd–668ee) (Administration Act), as amended by the National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997, requires us to develop a CCP for each national wildlife refuge. The purpose for developing a CCP is to provide refuge managers with a 15-year plan for achieving refuge purposes and contributing toward the mission of the National Wildlife Refuge System, consistent with sound principles of fish and wildlife management, conservation, legal mandates, and our policies. In addition to outlining broad management direction on conserving wildlife and their habitats, CCPs identify wildlifedependent recreational opportunities available to the public, including opportunities for hunting, fishing, wildlife observation, wildlife photography, and environmental education and interpretation. We will review and update the CCP at least every 15 years in accordance with the Administration Act. srobinson on DSKHWCL6B1PROD with NOTICES Comments Approximately 120 copies of the Draft CCP/EA were made available for a 30day public review period as announced in the Federal Register May 4, 2009 (74 FR 20495). Written comments were received from local citizens and the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources. Selected Alternative After considering the comments we received, we have selected Alternative C for implementation. Our primary focus under Alternative C will be to increase overall wildlife and habitat diversity. Although waterfowl will remain a focus of management, wetland habitat manipulations will also consider the needs of multiple species, such as marsh and wading birds. We will more actively manage upland forests and fields for neotropical migratory birds. Landscape level consideration of habitat management will include a diversity of open fields, upland and wetland forests, and additional wetlands. Upland loblolly pine plantations (e.g., relic VerDate Nov<24>2008 16:18 Dec 15, 2009 Jkt 220001 industrial forests) will be heavily thinned to encourage multi-strata vegetation composition and hardwood interspersion. More xeric loblolly pine plantations will be converted to longleaf pine savannas and subjected to frequent growing season prescribed fires to favor warm season grasses and forbs and the potential reintroduction of red-cockaded woodpeckers in the ACE Basin Project Area. Multiple species consideration will include species and habitats identified by the South Atlantic Migratory Bird Initiative and the State’s Strategic Conservation Plan. This alternative will expand our monitoring of migratory neotropical and breeding songbirds and other resident species. Monitoring efforts will be increased with the assistance of additional staff, trained volunteers, and academic researchers. Greater effort will be made to recruit academic researchers to the refuge to study and monitor refuge resources. Hunting and fishing will continue to be allowed on the refuge. However, hunting will be managed with a greater focus on achieving biological needs of the refuge, such as deer population management and feral hog elimination. Education and interpretation will continue, but with additional education and outreach efforts aimed at the importance of landscape ecology and diversity. A much broader effort will be made with outreach to nearby developing urban communities and a growing human population. The refuge will be staffed the same as the 2008 staffing model to enhance all refuge services and management programs. We will place greater emphasis on recruiting and training volunteers, and expanding workercamper opportunities to facilitate maintenance programs and other refuge goals and objectives. We will actively seek funding for research needs. We will place greater emphasis on developing and maintaining active partnerships, including seeking grants to assist the refuge in reaching primary objectives. Alternative C is considered to be the most effective for meeting the purposes of the refuge by conserving, restoring, and managing the refuge’s habitats and wildlife, while optimizing wildlifedependent public uses. Alternative C will best achieve national, ecosystem, and refuge-specific goals and objectives and it positively addresses significant issues and concerns expressed by the public. Authority: This notice is published under the authority of the National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997, Public Law 105–57. PO 00000 Frm 00060 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 66673 Dated: September 30, 2009. Jacquelyn B. Parrish, Acting Regional Director. [FR Doc. E9–29869 Filed 12–15–09; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–55–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service [FWS–R4–R–2009–N172; 40136–1265–0000– S3] Mandalay National Wildlife Refuge, Terrebonne Parish, LA AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability: Final comprehensive conservation plan and finding of no significant impact. SUMMARY: We, the Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the availability of our final comprehensive conservation plan (CCP) and finding of no significant impact (FONSI) for the environmental assessment for Mandalay National Wildlife Refuge (NWR). In the final CCP, we describe how we will manage this refuge for the next 15 years. ADDRESSES: You may obtain a copy of the CCP by writing to: Mr. Paul Yakupzack, Refuge Manager, Mandalay NWR, 3599 Bayou Black Drive, Houma, LA 70360. You may also access and download the document from the Service’s Web site: http:// southeast.fws.gov/planning. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Paul Yakupzack; telephone: 985/853– 1078; fax: 985/853–1079; e-mail: paul_yakupzack@fws.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Introduction With this notice, we finalize the CCP process for Mandalay NWR. We started this process through a notice in the Federal Register on March 19, 2007 (72 FR 12811). For more about the process, see that notice. . Mandalay NWR, approximately 5 miles west of Houma, Louisiana, was established on May 2, 1996, with the purchase of 4,416 acres under the authority of the Migratory Bird Conservation Act of 1929 and the Endangered Species Act of 1973. The refuge, predominately freshwater marsh and cypress-tupelo swamp, provides excellent habitat for waterfowl, wading birds, and neotropical migratory songbirds. We announce our decision and the availability of the final CCP and FONSI for Mandalay NWR in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act E:\FR\FM\16DEN1.SGM 16DEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 74, Number 240 (Wednesday, December 16, 2009)]
[Notices]
[Pages 66672-66673]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E9-29869]


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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Fish and Wildlife Service

[FWS-R4-R-2009-N186; 40136-1265-0000-S3]


Ernest F. Hollings ACE Basin National Wildlife Refuge, 
Charleston, Beaufort, Colleton, and Hampton Counties, SC

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability: Final comprehensive conservation plan 
and finding of no significant impact.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the 
availability of our final comprehensive conservation plan (CCP) and 
finding of no significant impact (FONSI) for the environmental 
assessment for Ernest F. Hollings ACE Basin National Wildlife Refuge 
(ACE Basin NWR). In the final CCP, we describe how we will manage this 
refuge for the next 15 years.

ADDRESSES: You may obtain a copy of the CCP by writing to: Mr. Van 
Fischer, Refuge Planner, South Carolina Lowcountry Refuge Complex, 5801 
Highway 17 North, Awendaw, SC 29429. You may also access and download 
the document from the Service's Web site: http://southeast.fws.gov/planning.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Van Fischer; telephone: 843/928-
3264; E-mail: van_fischer@fws.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Introduction

    With this notice, we finalize the CCP process for ACE Basin NWR. We 
started this process through a notice in the Federal Register on 
January 3, 2007 (72 FR 141). For more about the process, see that 
notice. ACE Basin NWR was established on September 20, 1990, and was 
renamed the Ernest F. Hollings ACE Basin National Wildlife Refuge on 
May 16, 2005. The refuge is a partner in the ACE Basin Task Force, a 
coalition consisting of the Service, the South Carolina Department of 
Natural Resources, Ducks Unlimited, The Nature Conservancy, The Low 
Country Open Land Trust, Mead Westvaco, and private landowners of the 
ACE Basin system. The refuge's two separate units (Edisto and Combahee) 
are further broken down into subunits, with the Edisto Unit containing 
the Barrelville, Grove, and Jehossee subunits; and the Combahee Unit 
containing the Bonny Hall, Combahee Fields, and Yemassee subunits. The 
refuge is divided into 9 management units or compartments, ranging in 
size from 350 to 3,355 acres. Compartment boundaries are established 
along geographic features that can be easily identified on the ground 
(i.e., rivers, roads, and trails).
    We announce our decision and the availability of the final CCP and 
FONSI for ACE Basin NWR in accordance with the National Environmental 
Policy Act (NEPA) [40 CFR 1506.6(b)] requirements. We completed a 
thorough analysis of impacts on the human environment, which we 
included in the Draft Comprehensive Conservation Plan and Environmental 
Assessment (Draft CCP/EA). The CCP will guide us in managing and 
administering ACE Basin

[[Page 66673]]

NWR for the next 15 years. Alternative C is the foundation for the CCP.
    The compatibility determinations for upland game hunting, fishing/
boating, wildlife observation and photography, environmental education 
and interpretation, bicycling, research, exotic and nuisance wildlife 
control, forest management--commercial timber harvest, and cooperative 
farming are also available in the CCP.

Background

    The National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act of 1966 (16 
U.S.C. 668dd-668ee) (Administration Act), as amended by the National 
Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997, requires us to develop 
a CCP for each national wildlife refuge. The purpose for developing a 
CCP is to provide refuge managers with a 15-year plan for achieving 
refuge purposes and contributing toward the mission of the National 
Wildlife Refuge System, consistent with sound principles of fish and 
wildlife management, conservation, legal mandates, and our policies. In 
addition to outlining broad management direction on conserving wildlife 
and their habitats, CCPs identify wildlife-dependent recreational 
opportunities available to the public, including opportunities for 
hunting, fishing, wildlife observation, wildlife photography, and 
environmental education and interpretation. We will review and update 
the CCP at least every 15 years in accordance with the Administration 
Act.

Comments

    Approximately 120 copies of the Draft CCP/EA were made available 
for a 30-day public review period as announced in the Federal Register 
May 4, 2009 (74 FR 20495). Written comments were received from local 
citizens and the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources.

Selected Alternative

    After considering the comments we received, we have selected 
Alternative C for implementation. Our primary focus under Alternative C 
will be to increase overall wildlife and habitat diversity. Although 
waterfowl will remain a focus of management, wetland habitat 
manipulations will also consider the needs of multiple species, such as 
marsh and wading birds. We will more actively manage upland forests and 
fields for neotropical migratory birds. Landscape level consideration 
of habitat management will include a diversity of open fields, upland 
and wetland forests, and additional wetlands. Upland loblolly pine 
plantations (e.g., relic industrial forests) will be heavily thinned to 
encourage multi-strata vegetation composition and hardwood 
interspersion. More xeric loblolly pine plantations will be converted 
to longleaf pine savannas and subjected to frequent growing season 
prescribed fires to favor warm season grasses and forbs and the 
potential reintroduction of red-cockaded woodpeckers in the ACE Basin 
Project Area. Multiple species consideration will include species and 
habitats identified by the South Atlantic Migratory Bird Initiative and 
the State's Strategic Conservation Plan.
    This alternative will expand our monitoring of migratory 
neotropical and breeding songbirds and other resident species. 
Monitoring efforts will be increased with the assistance of additional 
staff, trained volunteers, and academic researchers. Greater effort 
will be made to recruit academic researchers to the refuge to study and 
monitor refuge resources.
    Hunting and fishing will continue to be allowed on the refuge. 
However, hunting will be managed with a greater focus on achieving 
biological needs of the refuge, such as deer population management and 
feral hog elimination. Education and interpretation will continue, but 
with additional education and outreach efforts aimed at the importance 
of landscape ecology and diversity. A much broader effort will be made 
with outreach to nearby developing urban communities and a growing 
human population.
    The refuge will be staffed the same as the 2008 staffing model to 
enhance all refuge services and management programs. We will place 
greater emphasis on recruiting and training volunteers, and expanding 
worker-camper opportunities to facilitate maintenance programs and 
other refuge goals and objectives. We will actively seek funding for 
research needs. We will place greater emphasis on developing and 
maintaining active partnerships, including seeking grants to assist the 
refuge in reaching primary objectives.
    Alternative C is considered to be the most effective for meeting 
the purposes of the refuge by conserving, restoring, and managing the 
refuge's habitats and wildlife, while optimizing wildlife-dependent 
public uses. Alternative C will best achieve national, ecosystem, and 
refuge-specific goals and objectives and it positively addresses 
significant issues and concerns expressed by the public.

    Authority: This notice is published under the authority of the 
National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997, Public Law 
105-57.

    Dated: September 30, 2009.
Jacquelyn B. Parrish,
Acting Regional Director.
[FR Doc. E9-29869 Filed 12-15-09; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4310-55-P