Willamette National Forest, McKenzie River Ranger District; Oregon; Goose Project, 24378-24380 [2014-09700]

Download as PDF 24378 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 83 / Wednesday, April 30, 2014 / Notices Completing vegetation type Herbicide application method Bearclover, grass ...................................................................................... Whitethorn, manzanita ground ................................................................. Deerbrush area ......................................................................................... Targeted area ground application. First follow-up would be radial ground application. First follow-up would be targeted ground application and additional follow-up would be radial ground application. Herbicide applications would be excluded near streams and special aquatic features as described below: Aquatic feature type Herbicide formulation Perennial Streams and Special Aquatic ............ Features ............................................................. Intermittent Streams .......................................... Aminopyralid, triclopyr, clopyralid ..................... Glyphosate ....................................................... Aminopyralid, triclopyr, clopyralid ..................... Glyphosate ....................................................... Aminopyralid, triclopyr, clopyralid ..................... Glyphosate ....................................................... 100. 50. 100 if wet, 50 if dry. 50 if wet, 25 if dry. 50 if wet, 25 if dry. 25 if wet, 10 if dry. on Monday May 15, 2014 from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. It is important that reviewers provide their comments at such times and in such manner that they are useful to the agency’s preparation of the environmental impact statement. Therefore, comments should be provided prior to the close of the comment period and should clearly articulate the reviewer’s concerns and contentions. Comments received in response to this solicitation, including names and addresses of those who comment, will be part of the public record for this proposed action. Comments submitted anonymously will be accepted and considered, however. gap creations and no-cut leave areas) and regeneration harvest on ∼49 acres (through a two-aged system that would allow for the regeneration of younger trees underneath residual trees left from the original canopy). The proposed action would also include maintenance of approximately 43 miles of road and creation of approximately 8 miles of temporary roads. The project area surrounds the community of McKenzie Bridge and is intermixed with private and national forest lands. The proposed project would manage stands to improve stand conditions: Diversity, density, and structure; reduce hazardous fuel levels in the McKenzie Bridge Wildland-Urban Interface; and provide for a sustainable supply of timber products from within the project area. Ephemeral Streams ........................................... Hand grubbing or cutting would be used to release conifer seedlings within exclusion zones and within approximately 500 acres of critical habitat for Sierra Nevada yellow legged frog. Control of invasive plant species would follow integrated pest management principles including manual, mechanical, and chemical control methods. Chemical control methods may include directed foliar and radius application using clopyralid, aminopyralid, or glyphosate. Oaks stand improvement would include oak pruning/thinning or fencing as needed to improve oak regeneration and growth within approximately 900 acres of deer winter range and critical winter range. Small conifer trees would be removed within 20 feet of existing oaks within the deer winter and critical winter ranges. Fencing would be used to protect individual oaks from deer and cattle browsing with small cages 2–4 feet in diameter or by fencing areas 1⁄4 acre to 2 acres in size. Distance (feet) Dated: April 23, 2014. Laurence Crabtree, Forest Supervisor, Eldorado National Forest. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Comments concerning the scope of the analysis must be received by May 30, 2014. The draft environmental impact statement is expected September 2014, and the final environmental impact statement is expected November 2014. Responsible Official Forest Service ADDRESSES: The Responsible Official is Laurence Crabtree, Forest Supervisor of the Eldorado National Forest. Willamette National Forest, McKenzie River Ranger District; Oregon; Goose Project Nature of Decision To Be Made AGENCY: mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES The Responsible Official may decide to implement the proposed action, take no action, or implement an alternative action. Scoping Process This notice of intent initiates the scoping process, which guides the development of the environmental impact statement. An open house will be held at the Amador District Office, 26820 Silver Drive, Pioneer, CA 95666, VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:41 Apr 29, 2014 Jkt 232001 [FR Doc. 2014–09698 Filed 4–29–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–11–M Forest Service, USDA. Notice of intent to prepare an environmental impact statement. ACTION: We propose to commercially harvest approximately 2,134 acres, reduce hazardous fuels through noncommercial thinning on ∼588 acres, and implement understory prescribe fire on ∼80 to ∼679 acres within the McKenzie Bridge Wildland-Urban Interface. Commercial harvest treatments would be comprised of variable density thinning on ∼2,085 acres (that includes SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00008 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 DATES: Send written comments to 57600 McKenzie HWY, McKenzie Bridge, OR 97413. Comments may also be sent via email to comments-pacific northwest-willamette-mckenzieriver@ fsfed.us, or via facsimile to 541–822– 7254. District open-house public meetings will be held at the McKenzie River district office (57600 McKenzie Hwy, McKenzie Bridge, OR 97413) on April 24, 2014 and May 1, 2014 from 1 p.m.–7 p.m. Goose open-house meetings will be held on May 2, 2014 at McKenzie Bridge, OR and May 9, 2014 at Leaburg, OR both from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at locations to be determined (please contact our office at 541–822– 3381 for updated information). These meetings provide additional E:\FR\FM\30APN1.SGM 30APN1 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 83 / Wednesday, April 30, 2014 / Notices opportunity for you to submit any scoping comments you may have. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES James Rudisill atjamesrudisill@fs.fed.us or at 541–822–7203. Individuals who use telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1–800–877–8339 between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., Eastern Time, Monday through Friday. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background On March 21, 2013, Judge Ann Aiken, United States District Judge, provided an Opinion and Order on Case No. 6:12– cv–00804–AA (Cascadia Wildlands and Oregon Wild, plaintiffs, v. United States Forest Service, defendant). The case involved a challenge to the authorization of the Goose Project (#29829) that had previously been decided on by the Forest Service on 09/13/2010 through the documentation of an Environmental Assessment and a corresponding Decision Notice and Finding of No Significant Impact. The Court found all but one of the plaintiffs’ arguments without merit. The Court found that the Forest Service provided a reasonably thorough analysis, adequately supported by materials in the administrative record, of the effects and consequences of the project on potential wilderness, the northern spotted owl, and riparian reserves. Although the Court found that the Forest Service disclosed such effects properly, this does not mean that it necessarily renders them insignificant. The Court stressed the importance that a significant effect need not actually occur to require the preparation of an Environmetal Impact Statement under the National Environmental Policy Act. The court stated that if there exists a substantial question as to whether a project may have a significant effect on the environment, then it is sufficient to trigger the preparation of an Environmetal Impact Statement. In this context, it was the court’s opinion that the environmental effects on potential wilderness, riparian reserves, and the northern spotted owl, although properly disclosed in the analysis of the Goose Project, still raised enough question as to whether they could be considered significant. As a result, the Court enjoined the Forest Service from moving forward with the Goose Project until an Environmental Impact Statement is prepared. Prior to the decision being litigated three timber sales contracts were awarded and are currently outstanding. These timber sale contracts are Ten Reoffer (contract #002679, VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:41 Apr 29, 2014 Jkt 232001 awarded to Seneca Sawmill), Golden (contract #002703, awarded to Seneca Sawmill), and Pegasus (contract #002638, awarded to Freres Lumber). The Forest Service is preparing an Environmental Impact Statement for the Goose Project in response to the Court’s Order and Opinion. Purpose and Need for Action The purpose of this project is to manage stands to improve stand conditions: Diversity, density, and structure; reduce hazardous fuel levels in the McKenzie Bridge Wildland-Urban Interface; and provide for a sustainable supply of timber products from within the Goose Project area, which covers a total of 13,181 acres of federal forested lands. A reduction in fires on the landscape over the past century, coupled with ingrowth of existing openings, has resulted in a deficient amount of young, regenerating early seral habitat on federal lands here. The project area contains four elk emphasis areas, three of which do not currently meet the Willamette Land and Resource Management Plan Standards and Guidelines for elk forage values. There is a need to enhance, create, and/or maintain regenerating early seral habitat in the project area to support wildlife species that depend on it. Riparian Reserves within the selected treatment units generally consist of dense and overstocked stands. Thinning is proposed in order to provide accelerated development of late successional connectivity, large diameter trees as large wood sources in streams and Riparian Reserves, and complex habitat structures representative of those that would result from natural disturbance patterns. Fire suppression has also resulted in increased fuel loading consisting of surface fuels, ladder fuels, and dense overstory canopies that increase potential impacts and risks to people, structures, and resources within and around the McKenzie Bridge WildlandUrban Interface. There is a need to treat hazardous fuels to reduce potential wildfire impacts and risk to private homes and other structures. This proposal is in alignment with the recommendations of the 2005 Lane County Community Wildfire Protection Plan and work the Oregon Department of Forestry has started to create defensible space around private residences in the McKenzie Bridge Wildland-Urban Interface. Forest stands selected for treatment are overstocked, from a tree health perspective, which decreases individual tree growth and increases tree and stand PO 00000 Frm 00009 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 24379 stress. This leads to an increase in a stand’s susceptibility to successful insect and disease attack as well as competition-related mortality. The project would address this through tree thinning that removes some trees and leaves primarily the largest and healthiest trees, which then have a greater amount of resources available. As a result stand vigor would increase, and released trees would develop into larger trees more quickly. Tree species, age, and structure diversity would be maintained or enhanced. One of the management goals of the Willamette National Forest Land and Resource Management Plan (Willamette Forest Plan) is to provide a sustained yield of timber for commercial products (p, IV–5). The 1994 Record of Decision and Standards and Guidelines for Management of Habitat for LateSuccessional and Old-Growth Related Species Within the Range of the Northern Spotted Owl (Northwest Forest Plan) amends the Willamette Forest Plan and also recognizes ‘‘the need for a sustainable supply of timber . . . on a predictable and long-term basis’’ (p. 26). All of the proposed activity units are within the Adaptive Management Area and Matrix land management allocations that are identified as the areas where most of the scheduled timber harvest will occur (p C–39). The management of selected stands provides forest products in a manner that meets direction provided in the Willamette Forest Plan as amended by the Northwest Forest Plan. Proposed Action We propose to commercially harvest approximately 2,134 acres, reduce hazardous fuels through noncommercial thinning on ∼588 acres, and implement understory prescribe fire on ∼80 to ∼679 acres within the McKenzie Bridge Wildland-Urban Interface. Commercial harvest treatments would be comprised of variable density thinning on ∼2,085 acres (that includes gap creations and no-cut leave areas) and regeneration harvest on ∼49 acres. Reforestation would be implemented in regeneration units. Some variable thinning would include dominant tree release (including sugar pine release) and some would include a greater emphasis on creating early seral wildlife gaps. Harvest operations would be implemented by helicopter (451 acres), skyline (640 acres), and ground based (1,009 acres) logging systems. Fuel reductions would be implemented by hand and mechanical methods of ramoval and/or piling fuels that would then be burned on site through pile burning or understory prescribed fire. E:\FR\FM\30APN1.SGM 30APN1 24380 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 83 / Wednesday, April 30, 2014 / Notices The proposed action would also include maintenance of approximately 43 miles of road and creation of approximately 8 miles of temporary roads. Responsible Official, McKenzie River District Ranger Nature of Decision To Be Made Given the purpose and need, the scope of the decision to be made by the responsible official will be as follows: • Do the proposed actions comply with all applicable laws governing Forest Service actions? • Do the proposed actions comply with the applicable Standards and Guidelines found in the Willamette Land and Resource Management Plan (LRMP)? Æ If not, will the action amend the LRMP? • Does the Environmental Impact Statement have sufficient site-specific environmental analysis to make an informed decision? • Do the proposed actions meet the purpose and need for action? With these assurances the responsible official must decide: • Whether or not to select the proposed action or one of any other potential alternatives that may be developed, and what, if any, additional actions should be required. • Do any of the reasonably selectable alternatives, based on the criteria stated above, best meet the outstanding contractural obligations of the Forest Service on timber sales sold under the original Goose decision? And if so, is this an effective way to meet the intent of the project while meeting these obligations? • Are there alternative ways to meet the purpose of the project other than the proposed action we offer, which you would like the Forest Service to consider and analyze? • Is there any information about the project area, which you believe is important in the context of the proposed activities that you would like the Forest Service to consider? • What specifically are the potential effects of this proposal that you are particularly concerned about? For example, rather than simply stating that you would like a change in a proposed activity or that you would not like an activity to take place, it is most helpful to understand why you desire this. What are your underlying concerns with an activity or action; what are the effects from the activity that concern you? It is important that reviewers provide their comments at such times and in such manner that they are useful to the agency’s preparation of the environmental impact statement. Therefore, comments should be provided prior to the close of the comment period and should clearly articulate the reviewer’s concerns and contentions. Comments received in response to this solicitation, including names and addresses of those who comment, will be part of the public record for this proposed action. Comments submitted anonymously will be accepted and considered, however. Dated: April 18, 2014. Terry Baker, District Ranger. [FR Doc. 2014–09700 Filed 4–29–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–11–M mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Scoping Process This notice of intent initiates the scoping process, which guides the development of the environmental impact statement. District open-house public meetings will be held for your convenience at the McKenzie River district office (57600 McKenzie Hwy, McKenzie Bridge, OR 97413) on April 24, 2014 and May 1, 2014 from 1 p.m.– 7 p.m. Goose open-house meetings will be held on May 2, 2014 at McKenzie Bridge, OR and May 9, 2014 at Leaburg, OR from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at locations to be determined (please contact our office at 541–822–3381 for updated information). All of these meetings provide an opportunity to gain more information regarding this proposed project and also provide an opportunity for you to submit any scoping comments you may have. We are interested in your comments on the following questions: VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:41 Apr 29, 2014 Jkt 232001 DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Rural Business-Cooperative Service Inviting Applications for Rural Cooperative Development Grants Rural Business-Cooperative Service, USDA. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: USDA announces the availability of grants through the Rural Cooperative Development Grant (RCDG) Program for Fiscal Year 2014. Pursuant to The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2014 (H.R. 3547) approximately $5.8 million is available. We are requesting proposals from applicants interested in improving the economic condition of rural areas through cooperative development. Eligible applicants include a non-profit corporation or an institution of higher education. SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00010 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Applications are limited to one per applicant for a maximum of $200,000, and matching funds are required. The grant period is limited to a one-year timeframe. DATES: Complete applications must be submitted on paper or electronically according to the following deadlines: Paper applications must be postmarked and mailed, shipped, or sent overnight no later than June 30, 2014, to be eligible for FY 2014 grant funding. You may also hand carry your application to one of our field offices, but it must be received by close of business on the deadline date. Late applications are not eligible for FY 2014 grant funding. Electronic copies must be received by http://www.grants.gov no later than midnight eastern time June 24, 2014 to be eligible for FY 2014 grant funding. Please review the Grants.gov Web site at http://grants.gov/applicants/ organization_registration.jsp for instructions on the process of registering your organization as soon as possible to ensure you are able to meet the electronic application deadline. If you do not meet the deadline for submitting an electronic application, you may hand carry or submit a paper application by the deadline as discussed above. Late applications will not be eligible for FY 2014 grant funding. ADDRESSES: You should contact a USDA Rural Development State Office (State Office) if you have questions. You are encouraged to contact your State Office well in advance of the application deadline to discuss your project and ask any questions about the application process. Program guidance as well as application and matching funds templates may be obtained at http:// www.rurdev.usda.gov/bcp_rcdg.html. If you want to submit an electronic application, follow the instructions for the RCDG funding announcement located at http://www.grants.gov. If you want to submit a paper application, send it to the State Office located in the State where you are headquartered. If you are headquartered in Washington, DC please contact the Office of the Deputy Administrator, Cooperative Programs, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, at (202) 720–7558 for guidance on where to submit your application. Contact information for State Offices can be found at http://www.rurdev.usda. gov/StateOfficeAddresses.html. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Office of the Deputy Administrator, Cooperative Programs, Rural BusinessCooperative Service, United States Department of Agriculture, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Mail Stop E:\FR\FM\30APN1.SGM 30APN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 83 (Wednesday, April 30, 2014)]
[Notices]
[Pages 24378-24380]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-09700]


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

DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Forest Service


Willamette National Forest, McKenzie River Ranger District; 
Oregon; Goose Project

AGENCY: Forest Service, USDA.

ACTION: Notice of intent to prepare an environmental impact statement.

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

SUMMARY: We propose to commercially harvest approximately 2,134 acres, 
reduce hazardous fuels through non-commercial thinning on ~588 acres, 
and implement understory prescribe fire on ~80 to ~679 acres within the 
McKenzie Bridge Wildland-Urban Interface. Commercial harvest treatments 
would be comprised of variable density thinning on ~2,085 acres (that 
includes gap creations and no-cut leave areas) and regeneration harvest 
on ~49 acres (through a two-aged system that would allow for the 
regeneration of younger trees underneath residual trees left from the 
original canopy). The proposed action would also include maintenance of 
approximately 43 miles of road and creation of approximately 8 miles of 
temporary roads. The project area surrounds the community of McKenzie 
Bridge and is intermixed with private and national forest lands. The 
proposed project would manage stands to improve stand conditions: 
Diversity, density, and structure; reduce hazardous fuel levels in the 
McKenzie Bridge Wildland-Urban Interface; and provide for a sustainable 
supply of timber products from within the project area.

DATES: Comments concerning the scope of the analysis must be received 
by May 30, 2014. The draft environmental impact statement is expected 
September 2014, and the final environmental impact statement is 
expected November 2014.

ADDRESSES: Send written comments to 57600 McKenzie HWY, McKenzie 
Bridge, OR 97413. Comments may also be sent via email to comments-pacificnorthwest-willamette-mckenzieriver@fsfed.us, or via facsimile to 
541-822-7254. District open-house public meetings will be held at the 
McKenzie River district office (57600 McKenzie Hwy, McKenzie Bridge, OR 
97413) on April 24, 2014 and May 1, 2014 from 1 p.m.-7 p.m. Goose open-
house meetings will be held on May 2, 2014 at McKenzie Bridge, OR and 
May 9, 2014 at Leaburg, OR both from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at 
locations to be determined (please contact our office at 541-822-3381 
for updated information). These meetings provide additional

[[Page 24379]]

opportunity for you to submit any scoping comments you may have.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: James Rudisill 
atjamesrudisill@fs.fed.us or at 541-822-7203. Individuals who use 
telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal 
Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1-800-877-8339 between 8 a.m. and 8 
p.m., Eastern Time, Monday through Friday.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    On March 21, 2013, Judge Ann Aiken, United States District Judge, 
provided an Opinion and Order on Case No. 6:12-cv-00804-AA (Cascadia 
Wildlands and Oregon Wild, plaintiffs, v. United States Forest Service, 
defendant). The case involved a challenge to the authorization of the 
Goose Project (29829) that had previously been decided on by 
the Forest Service on 09/13/2010 through the documentation of an 
Environmental Assessment and a corresponding Decision Notice and 
Finding of No Significant Impact. The Court found all but one of the 
plaintiffs' arguments without merit. The Court found that the Forest 
Service provided a reasonably thorough analysis, adequately supported 
by materials in the administrative record, of the effects and 
consequences of the project on potential wilderness, the northern 
spotted owl, and riparian reserves. Although the Court found that the 
Forest Service disclosed such effects properly, this does not mean that 
it necessarily renders them insignificant.
    The Court stressed the importance that a significant effect need 
not actually occur to require the preparation of an Environmetal Impact 
Statement under the National Environmental Policy Act. The court stated 
that if there exists a substantial question as to whether a project may 
have a significant effect on the environment, then it is sufficient to 
trigger the preparation of an Environmetal Impact Statement. In this 
context, it was the court's opinion that the environmental effects on 
potential wilderness, riparian reserves, and the northern spotted owl, 
although properly disclosed in the analysis of the Goose Project, still 
raised enough question as to whether they could be considered 
significant. As a result, the Court enjoined the Forest Service from 
moving forward with the Goose Project until an Environmental Impact 
Statement is prepared. Prior to the decision being litigated three 
timber sales contracts were awarded and are currently outstanding. 
These timber sale contracts are Ten Reoffer (contract 002679, 
awarded to Seneca Sawmill), Golden (contract 002703, awarded 
to Seneca Sawmill), and Pegasus (contract 002638, awarded to 
Freres Lumber). The Forest Service is preparing an Environmental Impact 
Statement for the Goose Project in response to the Court's Order and 
Opinion.

Purpose and Need for Action

    The purpose of this project is to manage stands to improve stand 
conditions: Diversity, density, and structure; reduce hazardous fuel 
levels in the McKenzie Bridge Wildland-Urban Interface; and provide for 
a sustainable supply of timber products from within the Goose Project 
area, which covers a total of 13,181 acres of federal forested lands.
    A reduction in fires on the landscape over the past century, 
coupled with in-growth of existing openings, has resulted in a 
deficient amount of young, regenerating early seral habitat on federal 
lands here. The project area contains four elk emphasis areas, three of 
which do not currently meet the Willamette Land and Resource Management 
Plan Standards and Guidelines for elk forage values. There is a need to 
enhance, create, and/or maintain regenerating early seral habitat in 
the project area to support wildlife species that depend on it.
    Riparian Reserves within the selected treatment units generally 
consist of dense and overstocked stands. Thinning is proposed in order 
to provide accelerated development of late successional connectivity, 
large diameter trees as large wood sources in streams and Riparian 
Reserves, and complex habitat structures representative of those that 
would result from natural disturbance patterns.
    Fire suppression has also resulted in increased fuel loading 
consisting of surface fuels, ladder fuels, and dense overstory canopies 
that increase potential impacts and risks to people, structures, and 
resources within and around the McKenzie Bridge Wildland-Urban 
Interface. There is a need to treat hazardous fuels to reduce potential 
wildfire impacts and risk to private homes and other structures. This 
proposal is in alignment with the recommendations of the 2005 Lane 
County Community Wildfire Protection Plan and work the Oregon 
Department of Forestry has started to create defensible space around 
private residences in the McKenzie Bridge Wildland-Urban Interface.
    Forest stands selected for treatment are overstocked, from a tree 
health perspective, which decreases individual tree growth and 
increases tree and stand stress. This leads to an increase in a stand's 
susceptibility to successful insect and disease attack as well as 
competition-related mortality. The project would address this through 
tree thinning that removes some trees and leaves primarily the largest 
and healthiest trees, which then have a greater amount of resources 
available. As a result stand vigor would increase, and released trees 
would develop into larger trees more quickly. Tree species, age, and 
structure diversity would be maintained or enhanced.
    One of the management goals of the Willamette National Forest Land 
and Resource Management Plan (Willamette Forest Plan) is to provide a 
sustained yield of timber for commercial products (p, IV-5). The 1994 
Record of Decision and Standards and Guidelines for Management of 
Habitat for Late-Successional and Old-Growth Related Species Within the 
Range of the Northern Spotted Owl (Northwest Forest Plan) amends the 
Willamette Forest Plan and also recognizes ``the need for a sustainable 
supply of timber . . . on a predictable and long-term basis'' (p. 26). 
All of the proposed activity units are within the Adaptive Management 
Area and Matrix land management allocations that are identified as the 
areas where most of the scheduled timber harvest will occur (p C-39). 
The management of selected stands provides forest products in a manner 
that meets direction provided in the Willamette Forest Plan as amended 
by the Northwest Forest Plan.

Proposed Action

    We propose to commercially harvest approximately 2,134 acres, 
reduce hazardous fuels through non-commercial thinning on ~588 acres, 
and implement understory prescribe fire on ~80 to ~679 acres within the 
McKenzie Bridge Wildland-Urban Interface. Commercial harvest treatments 
would be comprised of variable density thinning on ~2,085 acres (that 
includes gap creations and no-cut leave areas) and regeneration harvest 
on ~49 acres. Reforestation would be implemented in regeneration units. 
Some variable thinning would include dominant tree release (including 
sugar pine release) and some would include a greater emphasis on 
creating early seral wildlife gaps. Harvest operations would be 
implemented by helicopter (451 acres), skyline (640 acres), and ground 
based (1,009 acres) logging systems. Fuel reductions would be 
implemented by hand and mechanical methods of ramoval and/or piling 
fuels that would then be burned on site through pile burning or 
understory prescribed fire.

[[Page 24380]]

The proposed action would also include maintenance of approximately 43 
miles of road and creation of approximately 8 miles of temporary roads.

Responsible Official, McKenzie River District Ranger

Nature of Decision To Be Made

    Given the purpose and need, the scope of the decision to be made by 
the responsible official will be as follows:
     Do the proposed actions comply with all applicable laws 
governing Forest Service actions?
     Do the proposed actions comply with the applicable 
Standards and Guidelines found in the Willamette Land and Resource 
Management Plan (LRMP)?
    [cir] If not, will the action amend the LRMP?
     Does the Environmental Impact Statement have sufficient 
site-specific environmental analysis to make an informed decision?
     Do the proposed actions meet the purpose and need for 
action?
    With these assurances the responsible official must decide:
     Whether or not to select the proposed action or one of any 
other potential alternatives that may be developed, and what, if any, 
additional actions should be required.
     Do any of the reasonably selectable alternatives, based on 
the criteria stated above, best meet the outstanding contractural 
obligations of the Forest Service on timber sales sold under the 
original Goose decision? And if so, is this an effective way to meet 
the intent of the project while meeting these obligations?

Scoping Process

    This notice of intent initiates the scoping process, which guides 
the development of the environmental impact statement. District open-
house public meetings will be held for your convenience at the McKenzie 
River district office (57600 McKenzie Hwy, McKenzie Bridge, OR 97413) 
on April 24, 2014 and May 1, 2014 from 1 p.m.-7 p.m. Goose open-house 
meetings will be held on May 2, 2014 at McKenzie Bridge, OR and May 9, 
2014 at Leaburg, OR from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at locations to be 
determined (please contact our office at 541-822-3381 for updated 
information). All of these meetings provide an opportunity to gain more 
information regarding this proposed project and also provide an 
opportunity for you to submit any scoping comments you may have. We are 
interested in your comments on the following questions:
     Are there alternative ways to meet the purpose of the 
project other than the proposed action we offer, which you would like 
the Forest Service to consider and analyze?
     Is there any information about the project area, which you 
believe is important in the context of the proposed activities that you 
would like the Forest Service to consider?
     What specifically are the potential effects of this 
proposal that you are particularly concerned about? For example, rather 
than simply stating that you would like a change in a proposed activity 
or that you would not like an activity to take place, it is most 
helpful to understand why you desire this. What are your underlying 
concerns with an activity or action; what are the effects from the 
activity that concern you?
    It is important that reviewers provide their comments at such times 
and in such manner that they are useful to the agency's preparation of 
the environmental impact statement. Therefore, comments should be 
provided prior to the close of the comment period and should clearly 
articulate the reviewer's concerns and contentions.
    Comments received in response to this solicitation, including names 
and addresses of those who comment, will be part of the public record 
for this proposed action. Comments submitted anonymously will be 
accepted and considered, however.

    Dated: April 18, 2014.
Terry Baker,
District Ranger.
[FR Doc. 2014-09700 Filed 4-29-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3410-11-M