Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for the Snow Mountain Solar Project on the Las Vegas Paiute Indian Reservation, Clark County, Nevada, 68909-68910 [2014-27379]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 223 / Wednesday, November 19, 2014 / Notices mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES necessity of this information collection for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (b) The accuracy of the agency’s estimate of the burden (hours and cost) of the collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (c) Ways we could enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) Ways we could minimize the burden of the collection of the information on the respondents. Please note that an agency may not conduct or sponsor, and an individual need not respond to, a collection of information unless it has a valid OMB Control Number. It is our policy to make all comments available to the public for review at the location listed in the ADDRESSES section. Before including your address, phone number, email address or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment—including your personal identifying information—may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. III. Data OMB Control Number: 1076–0131. Title: Indian Child Welfare Quarterly and Annual Report. Brief Description of Collection: The BIA is seeking to revise the information collection conducted under 25 CFR part 23, related to the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA). The revisions includes changing the name of the collection (previously identified as Indian Child Welfare Assistance Report, 25 CFR part 83) to ‘‘Indian Child Welfare Quarterly and Annual Report.’’ BIA simplified the previous form, which is now Part A— Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) Data. The changes includes few categories that are no longer considered useful for planning purposes, based on feedback received from BIA regional staff. In addition, a new form has been added, Part B—Tribal Child Abuse and Neglect Data. This form must completed by tribes that operate child protection programs. Submission of this information by Indian tribes allows BIA to consolidate and review selected data on Indian child welfare cases. The data is useful on a local level, to the tribes and tribal entities that collect it, for case management purposes. The data are useful on a nationwide basis for planning and budget purposes. VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:16 Nov 18, 2014 Jkt 235001 Response is required to obtain or retain a benefit. Type of Review: Revision of currently approved collection. Respondents: Indian tribes or tribal entities that are operating programs for Indian tribes. Number of Respondents: Approximately 536 per year, on average, for Part A—ICWA Data; approximately 200 per year, on average, for Part B— Tribal Child Abuse Neglect Data. Frequency of Response: Four times per year for the Part A—ICWA Data; if applicable, four times per year for Part B—Tribal Child Abuse Neglect Data. Estimated Time per Response: Approximately 15 minutes for Part A— ICWA Data; approximately 15 minutes for Part B—Tribal Child Abuse and Neglect Data. Estimated Total Annual Hour Burden: 736 hours, on average. Estimated Total Annual Non-Hour Dollar Cost: $0. Dated: November 13, 2014. Elizabeth K. Appel, Director, Office of Regulatory Affairs and Collaborative Action—Indian Affairs. [FR Doc. 2014–27375 Filed 11–18–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–4J–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Indian Affairs [AAK6006201 145A2100DD AOR3030.999900] Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for the Snow Mountain Solar Project on the Las Vegas Paiute Indian Reservation, Clark County, Nevada Bureau of Indian Affairs, Interior. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: In order to comply with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), as lead agency in cooperation with the Las Vegas Paiute Tribe (Tribe), the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), and other Federal agencies, intend to prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) that will evaluate a proposed photovoltaic (PV) solar energy generation project on the Las Vegas Paiute Indian Reservation and a transmission line located on tribal lands, private lands and/or Federal lands administered and managed by BLM in Clark County, Nevada. This notice announces the beginning of the scoping process to solicit public comments and identify potential issues related to the EIS. It also announces that SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00068 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 68909 public scoping meetings will be held in Nevada to identify potential issues, alternatives, and mitigation to be considered in the EIS. DATES: The date and location of the public scoping meeting will be published in the Las Vegas Sun and Las Vegas Review-Journal at least 15 days before the scoping meeting. Written comments on the scope of the EIS or implementation of the proposal must arrive by December 19, 2014. ADDRESSES: You may mail, email, or hand carry written comments to either Mr. Paul Schlafly, Natural Resource Specialist, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Southern Paiute Agency, 180 North 200 East, Suite 111, P.O. Box 720, St. George, Utah 84770; telephone: (435) 674–9720; email: paul.schlafly@bia.gov, or Mr. Chip Lewis, BIA Western Regional Office, 2600 North Central Avenue, 4th Floor Mailroom, Phoenix, Arizona 85004; telephone: (602) 379– 6782; email: chip.lewis@bia.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The proposed Federal action, taken under 25 U.S.C. 415, is BIA’s approval of a solar energy ground lease and associated agreements entered into by the Las Vegas Paiute Tribe with a subsidiary of First Solar, Inc. (First Solar) to provide for construction and operation of an upto 100 megawatt (MW) alternating current solar photovoltaic (PV) electricity generation facility located entirely on the Las Vegas Paiute Snow Mountain Reservation and specifically on lands held in trust by the United States for the Tribe. The Project would interconnect to an adjacent substation via a short 138 kilovolt or 230 kilovolt (kV) line that may be located on Tribal lands, private lands and/or Federal lands administered and managed by BLM. First Solar has accordingly requested that the BIA and BLM additionally approve right-of-ways (ROWs) authorizing the construction and operation of the transmission line. Together, the proposed solar energy facility, transmission line, and other associated facilities will make up the proposed Snow Mountain Solar Project (Project). The Project would be located in Township 18 South, Range 59 East, Sections 34, 35, and 36 Mount Diablo Meridian, Nevada, and access to the Project would be provided by U.S. Highway 95, Paiute Drive, and/or an upgrade to an existing road that crosses next to the proposed Project site. The generation facility would generate electricity using First Solar’s solar PV panels. Also included would be inverters, a collection system, an on-site substation to step-up the voltage to E:\FR\FM\19NON1.SGM 19NON1 mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES 68910 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 223 / Wednesday, November 19, 2014 / Notices transmission-level voltage at 138 or 230kV, an operations and maintenance building, and other related facilities. A short single overhead 138 or 230 kV generation-tie transmission line would connect the solar project to the adjacent Northwest Substation. Construction of the Project is expected to take approximately 12 to 15 months. First Solar is expected to operate the energy facility for 30 years, with two options to renew the lease for an additional 10 years, if mutually acceptable to the Tribe and First Solar. The Project is expected to be built in one phase of up to 100 MW, per the demand of potential off-takers or utilities. During construction, the PV panels will be placed on top of fixed-tilt and/or single-axis tracking mounting systems that are set on steel posts embedded in the ground. Other foundation design techniques may be used depending on the site topography and conditions. No water will be used to generate electricity during operations. Water will be needed during construction for dust control and a minimal amount will be needed during operations for administrative and sanitary water use on-site. The water supply required for the Project would be leased from the Tribe and the EIS will consider the impacts of alternative sources and delivery methods. The purposes of the proposed actions are to: (1) Help to provide long-term, diverse, and viable economic revenue base and job opportunities for the Tribe; (2) help Nevada and neighboring States to meet their State renewable energy needs; and (3) allow the Tribe, in partnership with First Solar, to optimize the use of the lease site while maximizing the potential economic benefit to the Tribe. The BIA will prepare the EIS in cooperation with the Tribe, BLM, and possibly the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the Department of Defense (DOD). In addition, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) will provide input on the analysis. The resulting EIS will aim to: (1) Provide agency decision makers, the Tribe, and the general public with a comprehensive understanding of the impacts of the proposed Project and alternatives on the Reservation; (2) describe the cumulative impacts of increased development on the Reservation; and (3) identify and propose mitigation measures that would minimize or prevent significant adverse impacts. Consistent with these objectives, the EIS will analyze the proposed Project and appurtenant features, viable alternatives including VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:16 Nov 18, 2014 Jkt 235001 other interconnection options, modified footprint alternatives, alternate routing for Project ROWs, and the No Action alternative. Other alternatives may be identified in response to issues raised during the scoping process. The EIS will provide a framework for BIA and BLM to make determinations and to decide whether to take the aforementioned Federal actions. In addition, BIA will use and coordinate the NEPA commenting process to satisfy its obligations under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) (16 U.S.C. 470f) as provided for in 36 CFR 800.2(d)(3). Tribal consultations will be conducted in accordance with policy and tribal concerns will be given due consideration, including impacts on Indian trust assets. Other Federal agencies may rely on the EIS to make decisions under their authority and the Tribe may also use the EIS to make decisions. The USFWS will review the EIS for consistency with the Endangered Species Act, as amended, and other implementing acts, and may rely on the EIS to support its decisions and opinions regarding the Project’s impact on federally listed species. Issues to be covered during the scoping process may include, but would not be limited to, Project impacts on air quality, geology and soils, surface and groundwater resources, biological resources, threatened and endangered species, cultural resources, socioeconomic conditions, land use, aesthetics, environmental justice, and Indian trust resources. In addition to those already identified above, other Federal, State, and local agencies, along with other stakeholders that may be interested or affected by the BIA’s decision on the proposed Project, are invited to participate in the scoping process. Submission of Public Comments Please include your name, return address, and the caption ‘‘EIS, Snow Mountain Solar Project,’’ on the first page of any written comments. You may also submit comments at the public scoping meeting. A public scoping meeting will be held on the Reservation to further describe the Project and identify potential issues and alternatives to be considered in the EIS. The date of the public scoping meeting will be included in notices to be posted in the Las Vegas Sun and Las Vegas Review-Journal at least 15 days before the meeting. Public Comment Availability Comments, including names and addresses of respondents, will be PO 00000 Frm 00069 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 available for public review at the mailing address shown in the ADDRESSES section during regular business hours, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays. Before including your address, phone number, email address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment—including your personal identifying information—may be made publicly available at any time. Authority This notice is published in accordance with 40 CFR 1501.7 of the Council of Environmental Quality regulations and 43 CFR 46.235 of the Department of the Interior Regulations implementing the procedural requirements of the NEPA (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), and in accordance with the exercise of authority delegated to the Assistant Secretary—Indian Affairs by part 209 of the Department Manual. Dated: November 10, 2014. Kevin K. Washburn, Assistant Secretary—Indian Affairs. [FR Doc. 2014–27379 Filed 11–18–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–W7–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Indian Affairs [DR.5B711.IA000815] Indian Gaming Bureau of Indian Affairs, Interior. ACTION: Notice of Tribal-State Class III Gaming Compact taking effect. AGENCY: This notice publishes the Class III Gaming Compact between the Karuk Tribe and the State of California taking effect. DATES: Effective Date: November 19, 2014. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Paula L. Hart, Director, Office of Indian Gaming, Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary—Policy and Economic Development, Washington, DC 20240, (202) 219–4066. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Under section 11 of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA), Public Law 100– 497, 25 U.S.C. 2701 et seq., the Secretary of the Interior shall publish in the Federal Register notice of approved Tribal-State compacts for the purpose of engaging in Class III gaming activities on Indian lands. The Compact between the State of California and the Karuk Tribe allows for one gaming facility and authorizes the Tribe to operate up to SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\19NON1.SGM 19NON1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 223 (Wednesday, November 19, 2014)]
[Notices]
[Pages 68909-68910]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-27379]


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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Bureau of Indian Affairs

[AAK6006201 145A2100DD AOR3030.999900]


Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for the Snow 
Mountain Solar Project on the Las Vegas Paiute Indian Reservation, 
Clark County, Nevada

AGENCY: Bureau of Indian Affairs, Interior.

ACTION: Notice.

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

SUMMARY: In order to comply with the National Environmental Policy Act 
(NEPA), the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), as lead agency in 
cooperation with the Las Vegas Paiute Tribe (Tribe), the Bureau of Land 
Management (BLM), and other Federal agencies, intend to prepare an 
environmental impact statement (EIS) that will evaluate a proposed 
photovoltaic (PV) solar energy generation project on the Las Vegas 
Paiute Indian Reservation and a transmission line located on tribal 
lands, private lands and/or Federal lands administered and managed by 
BLM in Clark County, Nevada.
    This notice announces the beginning of the scoping process to 
solicit public comments and identify potential issues related to the 
EIS. It also announces that public scoping meetings will be held in 
Nevada to identify potential issues, alternatives, and mitigation to be 
considered in the EIS.

DATES: The date and location of the public scoping meeting will be 
published in the Las Vegas Sun and Las Vegas Review-Journal at least 15 
days before the scoping meeting. Written comments on the scope of the 
EIS or implementation of the proposal must arrive by December 19, 2014.

ADDRESSES: You may mail, email, or hand carry written comments to 
either Mr. Paul Schlafly, Natural Resource Specialist, Bureau of Indian 
Affairs, Southern Paiute Agency, 180 North 200 East, Suite 111, P.O. 
Box 720, St. George, Utah 84770; telephone: (435) 674-9720; email: 
paul.schlafly@bia.gov, or Mr. Chip Lewis, BIA Western Regional Office, 
2600 North Central Avenue, 4th Floor Mailroom, Phoenix, Arizona 85004; 
telephone: (602) 379-6782; email: chip.lewis@bia.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The proposed Federal action, taken under 25 
U.S.C. 415, is BIA's approval of a solar energy ground lease and 
associated agreements entered into by the Las Vegas Paiute Tribe with a 
subsidiary of First Solar, Inc. (First Solar) to provide for 
construction and operation of an up-to 100 megawatt (MW) alternating 
current solar photovoltaic (PV) electricity generation facility located 
entirely on the Las Vegas Paiute Snow Mountain Reservation and 
specifically on lands held in trust by the United States for the Tribe. 
The Project would interconnect to an adjacent substation via a short 
138 kilovolt or 230 kilovolt (kV) line that may be located on Tribal 
lands, private lands and/or Federal lands administered and managed by 
BLM. First Solar has accordingly requested that the BIA and BLM 
additionally approve right-of-ways (ROWs) authorizing the construction 
and operation of the transmission line. Together, the proposed solar 
energy facility, transmission line, and other associated facilities 
will make up the proposed Snow Mountain Solar Project (Project).
    The Project would be located in Township 18 South, Range 59 East, 
Sections 34, 35, and 36 Mount Diablo Meridian, Nevada, and access to 
the Project would be provided by U.S. Highway 95, Paiute Drive, and/or 
an upgrade to an existing road that crosses next to the proposed 
Project site. The generation facility would generate electricity using 
First Solar's solar PV panels. Also included would be inverters, a 
collection system, an on-site substation to step-up the voltage to

[[Page 68910]]

transmission-level voltage at 138 or 230kV, an operations and 
maintenance building, and other related facilities. A short single 
overhead 138 or 230 kV generation-tie transmission line would connect 
the solar project to the adjacent Northwest Substation.
    Construction of the Project is expected to take approximately 12 to 
15 months. First Solar is expected to operate the energy facility for 
30 years, with two options to renew the lease for an additional 10 
years, if mutually acceptable to the Tribe and First Solar. The Project 
is expected to be built in one phase of up to 100 MW, per the demand of 
potential off-takers or utilities. During construction, the PV panels 
will be placed on top of fixed-tilt and/or single-axis tracking 
mounting systems that are set on steel posts embedded in the ground. 
Other foundation design techniques may be used depending on the site 
topography and conditions. No water will be used to generate 
electricity during operations. Water will be needed during construction 
for dust control and a minimal amount will be needed during operations 
for administrative and sanitary water use on-site. The water supply 
required for the Project would be leased from the Tribe and the EIS 
will consider the impacts of alternative sources and delivery methods.
    The purposes of the proposed actions are to: (1) Help to provide 
long-term, diverse, and viable economic revenue base and job 
opportunities for the Tribe; (2) help Nevada and neighboring States to 
meet their State renewable energy needs; and (3) allow the Tribe, in 
partnership with First Solar, to optimize the use of the lease site 
while maximizing the potential economic benefit to the Tribe.
    The BIA will prepare the EIS in cooperation with the Tribe, BLM, 
and possibly the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), U.S. 
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the Department of Defense 
(DOD). In addition, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) will 
provide input on the analysis. The resulting EIS will aim to: (1) 
Provide agency decision makers, the Tribe, and the general public with 
a comprehensive understanding of the impacts of the proposed Project 
and alternatives on the Reservation; (2) describe the cumulative 
impacts of increased development on the Reservation; and (3) identify 
and propose mitigation measures that would minimize or prevent 
significant adverse impacts. Consistent with these objectives, the EIS 
will analyze the proposed Project and appurtenant features, viable 
alternatives including other interconnection options, modified 
footprint alternatives, alternate routing for Project ROWs, and the No 
Action alternative. Other alternatives may be identified in response to 
issues raised during the scoping process.
    The EIS will provide a framework for BIA and BLM to make 
determinations and to decide whether to take the aforementioned Federal 
actions. In addition, BIA will use and coordinate the NEPA commenting 
process to satisfy its obligations under Section 106 of the National 
Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) (16 U.S.C. 470f) as provided for in 36 
CFR 800.2(d)(3). Tribal consultations will be conducted in accordance 
with policy and tribal concerns will be given due consideration, 
including impacts on Indian trust assets. Other Federal agencies may 
rely on the EIS to make decisions under their authority and the Tribe 
may also use the EIS to make decisions. The USFWS will review the EIS 
for consistency with the Endangered Species Act, as amended, and other 
implementing acts, and may rely on the EIS to support its decisions and 
opinions regarding the Project's impact on federally listed species.
    Issues to be covered during the scoping process may include, but 
would not be limited to, Project impacts on air quality, geology and 
soils, surface and groundwater resources, biological resources, 
threatened and endangered species, cultural resources, socioeconomic 
conditions, land use, aesthetics, environmental justice, and Indian 
trust resources. In addition to those already identified above, other 
Federal, State, and local agencies, along with other stakeholders that 
may be interested or affected by the BIA's decision on the proposed 
Project, are invited to participate in the scoping process.

Submission of Public Comments

    Please include your name, return address, and the caption ``EIS, 
Snow Mountain Solar Project,'' on the first page of any written 
comments. You may also submit comments at the public scoping meeting.
    A public scoping meeting will be held on the Reservation to further 
describe the Project and identify potential issues and alternatives to 
be considered in the EIS. The date of the public scoping meeting will 
be included in notices to be posted in the Las Vegas Sun and Las Vegas 
Review-Journal at least 15 days before the meeting.

Public Comment Availability

    Comments, including names and addresses of respondents, will be 
available for public review at the mailing address shown in the 
ADDRESSES section during regular business hours, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., 
Monday through Friday, except holidays. Before including your address, 
phone number, email address, or other personal identifying information 
in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment--
including your personal identifying information--may be made publicly 
available at any time.

Authority

    This notice is published in accordance with 40 CFR 1501.7 of the 
Council of Environmental Quality regulations and 43 CFR 46.235 of the 
Department of the Interior Regulations implementing the procedural 
requirements of the NEPA (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), and in accordance 
with the exercise of authority delegated to the Assistant Secretary--
Indian Affairs by part 209 of the Department Manual.

    Dated: November 10, 2014.
Kevin K. Washburn,
Assistant Secretary--Indian Affairs.
[FR Doc. 2014-27379 Filed 11-18-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4310-W7-P