Revised Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for EA-18G Growler Airfield Operations at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, WA and Notice of Request for Public Scoping Comments, 61296-61298 [2014-24223]

Download as PDF 61296 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 197 / Friday, October 10, 2014 / Notices auxiliary aids should be directed to Thomas A. Nies, Executive Director, at (978) 465–0492, at least 5 days prior to the meeting date. Authority: 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Dated: October 7, 2014. Tracey L. Thompson, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2014–24238 Filed 10–9–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P COMMITTEE FOR PURCHASE FROM PEOPLE WHO ARE BLIND OR SEVERELY DISABLED Procurement List; Proposed Additions Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled. ACTION: Proposed additions to the Procurement List. AGENCY: The Committee is proposing to add products and a service to the Procurement List that will be furnished by nonprofit agencies employing persons who are blind or have other severe disabilities. Comments Must Be Received On Or Before: 11/10/2014. ADDRESSES: Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled, 1401 S. Clark Street, Suite 10800, Arlington, Virginia, 22202–4149. For Further Information Or To Submit Comments Contact: Barry S. Lineback, Telephone: (703) 603–7740, Fax: (703) 603–0655, or email CMTEFedReg@ AbilityOne.gov. SUMMARY: This notice is published pursuant to 41 USC 8503(a)(2) and 41 CFR 51–2.3. Its purpose is to provide interested persons an opportunity to submit comments on the proposed actions. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Additions Contracting Activity: Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support, Philadelphia, PA Coverage: C-List for 100% of the requirement of the Department of Defense, as aggregated by the Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support, Philadelphia, PA. Laminating Pouch, Thermal, 3 Mil Thickness, Letter size NSN: 9330–00–NIB–0003—100/BX NSN: 9330–00–NIB–0004—25/BX NSN: 9330–00–NIB–0005—50/BX NSN: 9330–00–NIB–0007—100/BX NPA: LC Industries, Inc., Durham, NC Contracting Activity: General Services Administration, Fort Worth, TX Coverage: A-List for the Total Government Requirement as aggregated by the General Services Administration, Fort Worth, TX. NSN: MR 1070—Brush, Power Scrub NSN: MR 1071—Brush, Kitchen NSN: MR 1074—Broom, Corn NSN: MR 1081—Brush, Toilet Bowl NSN: MR 1082—Broom, Large, Angle NPA: Alphapointe, Kansas City, MO Contracting Activity: NEXCOM-Navy Exchange Service Command, Virginia Beach, VA Coverage: C-List for the requirements of Navy Exchanges as aggregated by the Navy Exchange Service Command (NEXCOM), Virginia Beach, VA. NSN: MR 10669—Kit, Party, New Year’s NPA: Winston-Salem Industries for the Blind, Inc., Winston-Salem, NC Contracting Activity: Defense Commissary Agency, Fort Lee, VA Coverage: C-List for the requirements of military commissaries and exchanges as aggregated by the Defense Commissary Agency, Fort Lee, VA. Service Service Type/Location: Internal Mail and Messenger Service, U.S. Department of State, Harry S. Truman Building, 2201 C Street NW., Washington, DC NPA: ServiceSource, Inc., Alexandria, VA Contracting Activity: Department of State, Office of Acquisition Mgmt—MA, Arlington, VA Barry S. Lineback, Director, Business Operations. If the Committee approves the proposed additions, the entities of the Federal Government identified in this notice will be required to procure the products and service listed below from nonprofit agencies employing persons who are blind or have other severe disabilities. The following products and service are proposed for addition to the Procurement List for production by the nonprofit agencies listed: [FR Doc. 2014–24243 Filed 10–9–14; 8:45 am] Products PLACE: Rice, Long Grain, Parboiled NSN: 8920–01–E62–4281—6/10 lb. Pkgs NSN: 8920–01–E62–4280—2/10 lb. Pkgs NPA: Vision Corps, Lancaster, PA VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:09 Oct 09, 2014 Jkt 235001 BILLING CODE 6353–01–P Decisional Matter: Safety Standard Recreational Off-Highway Vehicles—NPR. A live webcast of the Meeting can be viewed at www.cpsc.gov/live. For a recorded message containing the latest agenda information, call (301) 504–7948. CONTACT PERSON FOR MORE INFORMATION: Todd A. Stevenson, Office of the Secretary, U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, 4330 East West Highway, Bethesda, MD 20814, (301) 504–7923. MATTER TO BE CONSIDERED: Dated: October 7, 2014. Todd A. Stevenson, Secretariat. [FR Doc. 2014–24336 Filed 10–8–14; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 6355–01–P CONSUMER PRODUCT SAFETY COMMISSION Sunshine Act Meeting Wednesday October 22, 2014, 10 a.m.–12 p.m. PLACE: Hearing Room 420, Bethesda Towers, 4330 East West Highway, Bethesda, Maryland. STATUS: Commission Meeting—Open to the Public. MATTER TO BE CONSIDERED: Briefing Matter: Safety Standard Recreational Off-Highway Vehicles—NPR. A live webcast of the Meeting can be viewed at www.cpsc.gov/live. For a recorded message containing the latest agenda information, call (301) 504–7948. CONTACT PERSON FOR MORE INFORMATION: Todd A. Stevenson, Office of the Secretary, U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, 4330 East West Highway, Bethesda, MD 20814, (301) 504–7923. TIME AND DATE: Dated: October 7, 2014. Todd A. Stevenson, Secretariat. [FR Doc. 2014–24337 Filed 10–8–14; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 6355–01–P CONSUMER PRODUCT SAFETY COMMISSION Sunshine Act Meeting Wednesday October 29, 2014, 10 a.m.–12 p.m. TIME AND DATE: Hearing Room 420, Bethesda Towers, 4330 East West Highway, Bethesda, Maryland. Commission Meeting—Open to the Public. STATUS: PO 00000 Frm 00022 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Department of the Navy Revised Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for EA–18G Growler Airfield Operations at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, WA and Notice of Request for Public Scoping Comments Department of the Navy, DoD. Notice. AGENCY: ACTION: E:\FR\FM\10OCN1.SGM 10OCN1 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 197 / Friday, October 10, 2014 / Notices This notice is to advise the public that the Department of the Navy (DoN) is revising the scope for the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for EA–18G Growler airfield operations at Naval Air Station (NAS) Whidbey Island, Washington. This revised Notice of Intent has been published because since the September 5, 2013 publication of the original Notice of Intent in the Federal Register (78 FR 54635), the DoN has modified its proposed action to address a potential increase in the number of EA–18G aircraft to be procured and the subsequent changes in the number of aircraft that would be home based at NAS Whidbey Island. The revised scope will evaluate the potential environmental effects of homebasing an additional 13 to 36 EA– 18G Growler aircraft at NAS Whidbey Island and the effects of this home basing on EA–18G Growler airfield operations at Ault Field and Outlying Landing Field (OLF) Coupeville. Additional information concerning the proposed scope changes is available on the project Web site at www.whidbeyeis.com. The DoN invites comments on the proposed scope and content of the EIS from all interested parties. Comments on the scope of the EIS may be provided via the U.S. Postal Service or the EIS Web site at: www.whidbeyeis.com. In addition, the DoN will conduct open house information sessions to obtain comments on the scope of the EIS and to identify specific environmental concerns or topics for consideration. Dates and Addresses: Three open house information sessions will be held between 4:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. on: 1. Tuesday, October 28, 2014, Coupeville High School, 501 South Main Street, Coupeville, Washington 98239. 2. Wednesday, October 29, 2014, Oak Harbor Elks Lodge, 155 NE Ernst Street, Oak Harbor, Washington 98277. 3. Thursday, October 30, 2014, Anacortes High School Cafeteria, 1600 20th Street, Anacortes, Washington 98221. Each of the three open house information sessions will be informal and consist of information stations staffed by DoN representatives. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: EA– 18G EIS Project Manager (Code EV21/ SS); Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Atlantic, 6506 Hampton Boulevard, Norfolk, Virginia 23508. mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: NAS Whidbey Island is the center of excellence for electronic combat warfare training (electronic surveillance and SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:09 Oct 09, 2014 Jkt 235001 attack) and has supported the Navy’s electronic attack (VAQ) community of personnel, aircraft, equipment and mission-related Navy functions since 1971. With the disestablishment of U.S. Marine Corps electronic attack capabilities, the DoD expeditionary electronic attack mission is single-sited at NAS Whidbey Island which maximizes operational capabilities and efficiencies without duplicating facilities and functions at another location. NAS Whidbey Island provides facilities and support services for nine Carrier Air Wing (CVW) VAQ squadrons, three Expeditionary (EXP) VAQ squadrons, one Reserve squadron, and one Fleet Replacement Squadron (FRS). These squadrons are comprised of EA–6B Prowler and EA–18G Growler aircraft. In 2005 and 2012, the DoN prepared environmental analyses pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969 for the replacement of the EA–6B Prowler aircraft at NAS Whidbey Island with the newer EA–18G Growler aircraft. The 2005 Environmental Assessment (EA) evaluated the environmental consequences of transitioning CVW VAQ squadrons (fleet squadrons) and the FRS (training squadron) from the EA–6B to the EA–18G aircraft and disestablishing three EXP VAQ squadrons. A subsequent EA in 2012 evaluated the environmental consequences of retaining and transitioning the three EXP VAQ squadrons, previously proposed for disestablishment, from EA–6B to EA– 18G aircraft and the relocation of a reserve expeditionary VAQ squadron from Joint Base Andrews, Maryland. On September 5, 2013, the DoN announced the preparation of an EIS for EA–18G Growler airfield operations at NAS Whidbey Island. In this EIS, the DoN proposed to evaluate the potential environmental effects associated with the introduction of two additional EA– 18G Growler expeditionary squadrons acquired under the DoD Appropriations Act of 2014. During the public scoping comment period, public meetings were held December 3–5, 2013 in Coupeville, Oak Harbor, and Anacortes, Washington, and over 1,600 comments from the public were collected. In Spring 2014, the Chief of Naval Operations submitted an Unfunded Requirements List to Congress that identified a need for 22 additional EA– 18G aircraft to be included in the President’s Budget for Fiscal Year 2015. While it is unclear whether more Growlers will be procured, the DoN has decided to analyze the potential growth PO 00000 Frm 00023 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 61297 to ensure full transparency with the public and to ensure the local community has adequate opportunity to participate in the NEPA process. Accordingly, the DoN will assess the potential environmental impacts of the proposed force structure changes to the electronic attack community and home basing of additional EA–18G aircraft at NAS Whidbey Island by re-scoping the EIS effort currently underway. To meet current and future requirements, the DoN proposes to: (1) Continue and expand the existing electronic attack operations at NAS Whidbey Island complex, which includes Ault Field and OLF Coupeville (including a range of Field Carrier Landing Practice (FCLP) operations); (2) increase electronic attack capabilities and augment the VAQ FRS (provide for an increase of between 13 and 36 aircraft) to support an expanded DoD mission for identifying, tracking and targeting in a complex electronic warfare environment; (3) construct and renovate facilities at Ault Field to accommodate additional aircraft; and (4) station additional personnel and their family members at NAS Whidbey Island and in the surrounding community. The revised scope of the EIS will address the No Action Alternative and four action alternatives. Under the No Action Alternative, the DoN would not add VAQ squadrons or aircraft to NAS Whidbey Island to improve the Navy’s Electronic Attack capability. Legacy EA–6B Prowlers would continue to gradually transition to next generation EA–18G Growler aircraft (82 aircraft) and annual EA–18G Growler airfield operations would be maintained at levels consistent with those identified in the 2005 and 2012 transition EAs. While the No Action Alternative does not meet the purpose of and need for the proposed action, it serves as a baseline against which impacts of the proposed action can be evaluated. The DoN will analyze the potential environmental impacts of airfield operations (including FCLP for CVW and FRS squadrons at Ault Field and OLF Coupeville), facilities and functions associated with four force structure alternatives: 1. Alternative 1: Expand EXP electronic attack capabilities by establishing two new EXP VAQ squadrons and augmenting the FRS by three additional aircraft (a net increase of 13 aircraft); 2. Alternative 2: Expand CVW electronic attack capabilities by adding two additional aircraft to each existing CVW VAQ squadron and augmenting the FRS by six additional aircraft (a net increase of 24 aircraft); E:\FR\FM\10OCN1.SGM 10OCN1 mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES 61298 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 197 / Friday, October 10, 2014 / Notices 3. Alternative 3: Expand CVW capabilities by adding three additional aircraft to each existing CVW VAQ squadron and augmenting the FRS by eight additional aircraft (a net increase of 35 aircraft); and 4. Alternative 4: Expand EXP and CVW capabilities by establishing two new EXP VAQ squadrons, adding two additional aircraft to each existing CVW VAQ squadron, and augmenting the FRS by eight additional aircraft (a net increase of 36 aircraft). In developing the proposed range of alternatives, the DoN utilized longestablished operational considerations which are more fully described in the 2005 and 2012 EAs for the replacement of the EA–6B Prowler aircraft with the newer EA–18G Growler aircraft at NAS Whidbey Island. These considerations include the fact that all of the Navy’s electronic attack mission and training facilities are located at NAS Whidbey Island, including the substantial infrastructure and training ranges that have developed in more than 40 years of operation, the location of a suitable airfield that provides for the most realistic training environment, the distance aircraft would have to travel to accomplish training, and the expense of duplicating existing capabilities elsewhere. As a result, the DoN is not considering alternative locations for FCLP training, or squadron relocation. Short-term detachments to meet training requirements would continue, as needed. The environmental analysis in the EIS will focus on several aspects of the proposed action: aircraft operations at Ault Field and OLF Coupeville; facility construction; and personnel changes. Resource areas to be addressed in the EIS will include, but not be limited to: Air quality, noise, land use, socioeconomics, natural resources, biological resources, cultural resources, and safety and environmental hazards. The analysis will evaluate direct and indirect impacts, and will account for cumulative impacts from other relevant activities near the installation. Relevant and reasonable measures that could avoid or mitigate environmental effects will also be analyzed. Additionally, the DoN will undertake consultations applicable by law and regulation. As outlined in 36 CFR Part 800, ‘‘Protection of Historic Properties,’’ the DoN plans to comply with Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, as amended (NHPA), in conjunction with the NEPA process. The Section 106 process will include consultation with the State Historic Preservation Officer, Native American Tribes and Nations, other parties with a VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:09 Oct 09, 2014 Jkt 235001 demonstrated interest in cultural resources for the project, and the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation. Pursuant to 36 CFR 800.2(d), the DoN intends to use the public scoping open house meetings to facilitate public involvement pursuant to Section 106 of the NHPA. The DoN will present information about cultural resources and the Section 106 process for the project at the public scoping open house meetings. Comments on cultural resources or Section 106 issues or concerns that are received from the public during the scoping process will be addressed as part of the Section 106 process. No decision will be made to implement any alternative until the EIS process is completed and a Record of Decision is signed by the Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Energy, Installations and Environment) or designee. The scoping process will be used to identify community concerns and local issues to be addressed in the EIS. Federal agencies, state agencies, local agencies, Native American Indian Tribes and Nations, the public, and interested persons are encouraged to provide comments to the DoN to identify specific issues or topics of environmental concern that the commenter believes the DoN should consider. All comments provided orally or in writing at the scoping meetings or by mail during the scoping period will receive the same consideration during EIS preparation. All comments must be postmarked no later than November 17, 2014. The DoN will not release the names, street addresses, email addresses and screen names, telephone numbers, or other personally identifiable information of individuals who provide comments during scoping unless required by law. However, the DoN may release the city, state, and 5-digit zip code of individuals who provide comments. Each commenter making oral comments at the a public scoping meetings will be asked by the stenographer if he/she otherwise elects to authorize the release of their personally identifiable information prior to providing their comments. Commenters submitting written comments, either using comment forms or via the project Web site, may elect to authorize release of personally identifiable information by checking a ‘‘release’’ box on the comment form. To be included on the DoN’s mailing list for the EIS (or to receive a copy of the Draft EIS, when released), electronic requests can be made on the project Web site at www.whidbeyeis.com. Requests via the U.S. Postal Service PO 00000 Frm 00024 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 should be submitted to: EA–18G EIS Project Manager (Code EV21/SS); Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Atlantic, 6506 Hampton Blvd., Norfolk, VA 23508. The same policy for release of personally identifiable information as identified above for scoping comments will be maintained by DoN for individuals requesting to be included on the EIS mailing list. Dated: October 6, 2014. N.A. Hagerty-Ford, Commander, Office of the Judge Advocate General, U.S. Navy, Federal Register Liaison Officer. [FR Doc. 2014–24223 Filed 10–9–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3810–FF–P DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Department of the Navy Notice of Availability of Record of Decision for the Final Environmental Impact Statement for U.S. Navy F–35C West Coast Homebasing Department of the Navy, DoD. Notice. AGENCY: ACTION: The Department of the Navy, after carefully weighing the strategic, operational, and environmental consequences of the proposed action, announces its decision to provide facilities and functions to support homebasing of F–35C aircraft at Naval Air Station (NAS) Lemoore, California, by accomplishing the proposed action as set out in Alternative 2 of the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for U.S. Navy F–35C West Coast Homebasing. Under Alternative 2, a total of 100 F–35C aircraft in seven Navy Pacific Fleet squadrons (10 aircraft per squadron) and the Fleet Replacement Squadron (30 aircraft) will be homebased at NAS Lemoore beginning in 2016. The proposed action will be completed in the 2028 timeframe. The 100 F–35C aircraft will replace 70 aging FA–18 Hornet aircraft. As a result, aircraft loading at NAS Lemoore will gradually increase by a net of 30 aircraft over the 13-year period. There will be no changes in aircraft loading at Naval Air Facility (NAF) El Centro, California, under Alternative 2. Homebasing the F–35C at NAS Lemoore will result in an increase of approximately 68,400 operations per year at NAS Lemoore and an increase of approximately 800 operations per year at NAF El Centro. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The complete text of the Record of Decision (ROD) is available on the project Web SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\10OCN1.SGM 10OCN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 197 (Friday, October 10, 2014)]
[Notices]
[Pages 61296-61298]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-24223]


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DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE

Department of the Navy


Revised Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact 
Statement for EA-18G Growler Airfield Operations at Naval Air Station 
Whidbey Island, WA and Notice of Request for Public Scoping Comments

AGENCY: Department of the Navy, DoD.

ACTION: Notice.

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

[[Page 61297]]

SUMMARY: This notice is to advise the public that the Department of the 
Navy (DoN) is revising the scope for the Environmental Impact Statement 
(EIS) for EA-18G Growler airfield operations at Naval Air Station (NAS) 
Whidbey Island, Washington. This revised Notice of Intent has been 
published because since the September 5, 2013 publication of the 
original Notice of Intent in the Federal Register (78 FR 54635), the 
DoN has modified its proposed action to address a potential increase in 
the number of EA-18G aircraft to be procured and the subsequent changes 
in the number of aircraft that would be home based at NAS Whidbey 
Island. The revised scope will evaluate the potential environmental 
effects of homebasing an additional 13 to 36 EA-18G Growler aircraft at 
NAS Whidbey Island and the effects of this home basing on EA-18G 
Growler airfield operations at Ault Field and Outlying Landing Field 
(OLF) Coupeville. Additional information concerning the proposed scope 
changes is available on the project Web site at www.whidbeyeis.com.
    The DoN invites comments on the proposed scope and content of the 
EIS from all interested parties. Comments on the scope of the EIS may 
be provided via the U.S. Postal Service or the EIS Web site at: 
www.whidbeyeis.com. In addition, the DoN will conduct open house 
information sessions to obtain comments on the scope of the EIS and to 
identify specific environmental concerns or topics for consideration.
    Dates and Addresses: Three open house information sessions will be 
held between 4:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. on:
    1. Tuesday, October 28, 2014, Coupeville High School, 501 South 
Main Street, Coupeville, Washington 98239.
    2. Wednesday, October 29, 2014, Oak Harbor Elks Lodge, 155 NE Ernst 
Street, Oak Harbor, Washington 98277.
    3. Thursday, October 30, 2014, Anacortes High School Cafeteria, 
1600 20th Street, Anacortes, Washington 98221.
    Each of the three open house information sessions will be informal 
and consist of information stations staffed by DoN representatives.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: EA-18G EIS Project Manager (Code EV21/
SS); Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Atlantic, 6506 
Hampton Boulevard, Norfolk, Virginia 23508.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: NAS Whidbey Island is the center of 
excellence for electronic combat warfare training (electronic 
surveillance and attack) and has supported the Navy's electronic attack 
(VAQ) community of personnel, aircraft, equipment and mission-related 
Navy functions since 1971. With the disestablishment of U.S. Marine 
Corps electronic attack capabilities, the DoD expeditionary electronic 
attack mission is single-sited at NAS Whidbey Island which maximizes 
operational capabilities and efficiencies without duplicating 
facilities and functions at another location.
    NAS Whidbey Island provides facilities and support services for 
nine Carrier Air Wing (CVW) VAQ squadrons, three Expeditionary (EXP) 
VAQ squadrons, one Reserve squadron, and one Fleet Replacement Squadron 
(FRS). These squadrons are comprised of EA-6B Prowler and EA-18G 
Growler aircraft.
    In 2005 and 2012, the DoN prepared environmental analyses pursuant 
to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969 for the 
replacement of the EA-6B Prowler aircraft at NAS Whidbey Island with 
the newer EA-18G Growler aircraft. The 2005 Environmental Assessment 
(EA) evaluated the environmental consequences of transitioning CVW VAQ 
squadrons (fleet squadrons) and the FRS (training squadron) from the 
EA-6B to the EA-18G aircraft and disestablishing three EXP VAQ 
squadrons. A subsequent EA in 2012 evaluated the environmental 
consequences of retaining and transitioning the three EXP VAQ 
squadrons, previously proposed for disestablishment, from EA-6B to EA-
18G aircraft and the relocation of a reserve expeditionary VAQ squadron 
from Joint Base Andrews, Maryland.
    On September 5, 2013, the DoN announced the preparation of an EIS 
for EA-18G Growler airfield operations at NAS Whidbey Island. In this 
EIS, the DoN proposed to evaluate the potential environmental effects 
associated with the introduction of two additional EA-18G Growler 
expeditionary squadrons acquired under the DoD Appropriations Act of 
2014. During the public scoping comment period, public meetings were 
held December 3-5, 2013 in Coupeville, Oak Harbor, and Anacortes, 
Washington, and over 1,600 comments from the public were collected.
    In Spring 2014, the Chief of Naval Operations submitted an Unfunded 
Requirements List to Congress that identified a need for 22 additional 
EA-18G aircraft to be included in the President's Budget for Fiscal 
Year 2015. While it is unclear whether more Growlers will be procured, 
the DoN has decided to analyze the potential growth to ensure full 
transparency with the public and to ensure the local community has 
adequate opportunity to participate in the NEPA process. Accordingly, 
the DoN will assess the potential environmental impacts of the proposed 
force structure changes to the electronic attack community and home 
basing of additional EA-18G aircraft at NAS Whidbey Island by re-
scoping the EIS effort currently underway.
    To meet current and future requirements, the DoN proposes to: (1) 
Continue and expand the existing electronic attack operations at NAS 
Whidbey Island complex, which includes Ault Field and OLF Coupeville 
(including a range of Field Carrier Landing Practice (FCLP) 
operations); (2) increase electronic attack capabilities and augment 
the VAQ FRS (provide for an increase of between 13 and 36 aircraft) to 
support an expanded DoD mission for identifying, tracking and targeting 
in a complex electronic warfare environment; (3) construct and renovate 
facilities at Ault Field to accommodate additional aircraft; and (4) 
station additional personnel and their family members at NAS Whidbey 
Island and in the surrounding community.
    The revised scope of the EIS will address the No Action Alternative 
and four action alternatives. Under the No Action Alternative, the DoN 
would not add VAQ squadrons or aircraft to NAS Whidbey Island to 
improve the Navy's Electronic Attack capability. Legacy EA-6B Prowlers 
would continue to gradually transition to next generation EA-18G 
Growler aircraft (82 aircraft) and annual EA-18G Growler airfield 
operations would be maintained at levels consistent with those 
identified in the 2005 and 2012 transition EAs. While the No Action 
Alternative does not meet the purpose of and need for the proposed 
action, it serves as a baseline against which impacts of the proposed 
action can be evaluated.
    The DoN will analyze the potential environmental impacts of 
airfield operations (including FCLP for CVW and FRS squadrons at Ault 
Field and OLF Coupeville), facilities and functions associated with 
four force structure alternatives:
    1. Alternative 1: Expand EXP electronic attack capabilities by 
establishing two new EXP VAQ squadrons and augmenting the FRS by three 
additional aircraft (a net increase of 13 aircraft);
    2. Alternative 2: Expand CVW electronic attack capabilities by 
adding two additional aircraft to each existing CVW VAQ squadron and 
augmenting the FRS by six additional aircraft (a net increase of 24 
aircraft);

[[Page 61298]]

    3. Alternative 3: Expand CVW capabilities by adding three 
additional aircraft to each existing CVW VAQ squadron and augmenting 
the FRS by eight additional aircraft (a net increase of 35 aircraft); 
and
    4. Alternative 4: Expand EXP and CVW capabilities by establishing 
two new EXP VAQ squadrons, adding two additional aircraft to each 
existing CVW VAQ squadron, and augmenting the FRS by eight additional 
aircraft (a net increase of 36 aircraft).
    In developing the proposed range of alternatives, the DoN utilized 
long-established operational considerations which are more fully 
described in the 2005 and 2012 EAs for the replacement of the EA-6B 
Prowler aircraft with the newer EA-18G Growler aircraft at NAS Whidbey 
Island. These considerations include the fact that all of the Navy's 
electronic attack mission and training facilities are located at NAS 
Whidbey Island, including the substantial infrastructure and training 
ranges that have developed in more than 40 years of operation, the 
location of a suitable airfield that provides for the most realistic 
training environment, the distance aircraft would have to travel to 
accomplish training, and the expense of duplicating existing 
capabilities elsewhere. As a result, the DoN is not considering 
alternative locations for FCLP training, or squadron relocation. Short-
term detachments to meet training requirements would continue, as 
needed.
    The environmental analysis in the EIS will focus on several aspects 
of the proposed action: aircraft operations at Ault Field and OLF 
Coupeville; facility construction; and personnel changes. Resource 
areas to be addressed in the EIS will include, but not be limited to: 
Air quality, noise, land use, socioeconomics, natural resources, 
biological resources, cultural resources, and safety and environmental 
hazards.
    The analysis will evaluate direct and indirect impacts, and will 
account for cumulative impacts from other relevant activities near the 
installation. Relevant and reasonable measures that could avoid or 
mitigate environmental effects will also be analyzed. Additionally, the 
DoN will undertake consultations applicable by law and regulation.
    As outlined in 36 CFR Part 800, ``Protection of Historic 
Properties,'' the DoN plans to comply with Section 106 of the National 
Historic Preservation Act of 1966, as amended (NHPA), in conjunction 
with the NEPA process. The Section 106 process will include 
consultation with the State Historic Preservation Officer, Native 
American Tribes and Nations, other parties with a demonstrated interest 
in cultural resources for the project, and the Advisory Council on 
Historic Preservation. Pursuant to 36 CFR 800.2(d), the DoN intends to 
use the public scoping open house meetings to facilitate public 
involvement pursuant to Section 106 of the NHPA. The DoN will present 
information about cultural resources and the Section 106 process for 
the project at the public scoping open house meetings. Comments on 
cultural resources or Section 106 issues or concerns that are received 
from the public during the scoping process will be addressed as part of 
the Section 106 process.
    No decision will be made to implement any alternative until the EIS 
process is completed and a Record of Decision is signed by the 
Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Energy, Installations and Environment) 
or designee. The scoping process will be used to identify community 
concerns and local issues to be addressed in the EIS. Federal agencies, 
state agencies, local agencies, Native American Indian Tribes and 
Nations, the public, and interested persons are encouraged to provide 
comments to the DoN to identify specific issues or topics of 
environmental concern that the commenter believes the DoN should 
consider. All comments provided orally or in writing at the scoping 
meetings or by mail during the scoping period will receive the same 
consideration during EIS preparation. All comments must be postmarked 
no later than November 17, 2014.
    The DoN will not release the names, street addresses, email 
addresses and screen names, telephone numbers, or other personally 
identifiable information of individuals who provide comments during 
scoping unless required by law. However, the DoN may release the city, 
state, and 5-digit zip code of individuals who provide comments. Each 
commenter making oral comments at the a public scoping meetings will be 
asked by the stenographer if he/she otherwise elects to authorize the 
release of their personally identifiable information prior to providing 
their comments. Commenters submitting written comments, either using 
comment forms or via the project Web site, may elect to authorize 
release of personally identifiable information by checking a 
``release'' box on the comment form.
    To be included on the DoN's mailing list for the EIS (or to receive 
a copy of the Draft EIS, when released), electronic requests can be 
made on the project Web site at www.whidbeyeis.com. Requests via the 
U.S. Postal Service should be submitted to: EA-18G EIS Project Manager 
(Code EV21/SS); Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Atlantic, 
6506 Hampton Blvd., Norfolk, VA 23508. The same policy for release of 
personally identifiable information as identified above for scoping 
comments will be maintained by DoN for individuals requesting to be 
included on the EIS mailing list.

    Dated: October 6, 2014.
N.A. Hagerty-Ford,
Commander, Office of the Judge Advocate General, U.S. Navy, Federal 
Register Liaison Officer.
[FR Doc. 2014-24223 Filed 10-9-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3810-FF-P