Theodore Roosevelt and Holt Collier National Wildlife Refuges, Mississippi Final Comprehensive Conservation Plan and Finding of No Significant Impact for the Environmental Assessment, 4060-4061 [2016-01414]

Download as PDF 4060 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 15 / Monday, January 25, 2016 / Notices information collection described in section A. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR A. Overview of Information Collection Title of Information Collection: Home Equity Conversion Mortgage Counseling Client Session Evaluation. OMB Approval Number: 2505–0585. Type of Request: Extension. Form Number: HUD 92911. Description of the need for the information and proposed use: Tool to determine quality of client counseling sessions as part of periodic agency performance reviews. Respondents: Individuals or Household. Estimated Number of Respondents: 300. Estimated Number of Responses: 250. Frequency of Response: 1. Average Hours per Response: .06. Total Estimated Burdens: 50. B. Solicitation of Public Comment This notice is soliciting comments from members of the public and affected parties concerning the collection of information described in section A on the following: (1) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (2) The accuracy of the agency’s estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information; (3) Ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) Ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond; including through the use of appropriate automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses. HUD encourages interested parties to submit comment in response to these questions. asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Authority: Section 3507 of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, 44 U.S.C. chapter 35. Dated: January 15, 2016. Janet M. Golrick, Associate General Deputy Assistant Secretary for Housing Associate Deputy Federal Housing Commissioner. [FR Doc. 2016–01376 Filed 1–22–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4210–67–P VerDate Sep<11>2014 13:09 Jan 22, 2016 Jkt 238001 Fish and Wildlife Service [FWS–R4–R–2015–N236]; [FXRS12610400000S3–167–FF04R02000] Theodore Roosevelt and Holt Collier National Wildlife Refuges, Mississippi Final Comprehensive Conservation Plan and Finding of No Significant Impact for the Environmental Assessment Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability. AGENCY: We, the Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the availability of the final Comprehensive Conservation plan (CCP) and finding of no significant impact for the environmental assessment for Theodore Roosevelt and Holt Collier National Wildlife Refuges (NWRs), Washington and Sharkey Counties, Mississippi. In the final CCP, we describe how we will manage the two refuges for the next 15 years. ADDRESSES: You may obtain a copy of the CCP by downloading the document from our Internet Site at http:// southeast.fws.gov/planning under ‘‘Final Documents.’’ FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mike Rich, Project Leader, at (662) 836– 3004 (phone) or mike_rich@fws.gov (email). SUMMARY: SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Introduction With this notice, we complete the CCP process for Theodore Roosevelt and Holt Collier NWRs. We started the process through a notice in the Federal Register (78 FR 45953) on July 30, 2013. For more about the process, see that notice. The Theodore Roosevelt NWR Complex (Complex) is comprised of seven refuges: Hillside (est. 1975), Holt Collier (est. 2004), Mathews Brake (est. 1980), Morgan Brake (est. 1977), Panther Swamp (est. 1978), Theodore Roosevelt (est. 2004), and Yazoo National Wildlife Refuge (est. 1936). The Complex was originally known as the Yazoo National Wildlife Refuge Complex and then briefly named the Central Mississippi National Wildlife Refuge Complex. On January 23, 2004, section 145 of Public Law 108–199, the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2004, was signed into law by then President George W. Bush. The Act renamed the Complex as the Theodore Roosevelt National Wildlife Refuge Complex. It designated the PO 00000 Frm 00045 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 geographically separate Bogue Phalia Unit of Yazoo NWR as Holt Collier NWR. The refuge consists of 2,233 acres with an approved acquisition boundary of 18,000 acres. The Service lists its purpose as being designated under the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act (16 U.S.C. 664): It ‘‘shall be administered . . . for the conservation, maintenance, and management of wildlife, resources thereof, and its habitat thereon.’’ The Act also directed the Secretary of the Interior to establish the 6,600-acre Theodore Roosevelt NWR. No additional land was purchased for the two new refuges, but rather they were assembled from disjunct Farm Service Agency (FSA, formerly known as Farmers Home Administration) lands already in Service possession. To date 1,674 acres have been acquired in the Theodore Roosevelt NWR. The Service lists both new refuges as being established ‘‘for conservation purposes.’’ The habitat consists mainly of converted agricultural lands now reforested to trees more indicative of the native bottomland hardwood forest. Farmlands and open water also occur. The refuge is not open to the public. There are no public facilities located on either refuge. Background The CCP Process The National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) System Improvement Act of 1997 (Improvement Act) requires us to develop a CCP for each national wildlife refuge. CCPs are developed to provide refuge managers with a 15-year plan for achieving refuges’ purposes and contributing toward the mission of the NWR System, consistent with sound principles of fish and wildlife management, conservation, legal mandates, and our policies. CCPs describe a broad management direction for conserving wildlife and their habitats. They propose wildlifedependent recreational opportunities to be made available to the public. These include opportunities for hunting, fishing, wildlife observation, wildlife photography, and environmental education and interpretation. We will review the CCP annually and revise it as needed in accordance with the Improvement Act. Comments We made the Draft CCP and Environmental Assessment available online for a 30-day public review and comment period via a Federal Register notice (80 FR 13420) on March 13, 2015. A total of seven comments were E:\FR\FM\25JAN1.SGM 25JAN1 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 15 / Monday, January 25, 2016 / Notices asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES received by mail, email or verbally at the April 2, 2015, public meeting in Rolling Fork, Mississippi. Comments supporting the plan and preferred alternative were received from the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks, Safari Club International, and Mississippi Wildlife. CCP Alternatives, Including Our Preferred Alternative We developed three alternatives for managing the refuge (Alternatives A, B, and C), with Alternative B, Minimally Developed Refuges, selected for implementation. As these are newer refuges authorized by Congress in 2004, the focus of this plan is to develop them. Therefore, our efforts over the next 15 years will be focused on land acquisition to build-out the refuges to their approved acquisition boundaries. Passive habitat protection and the addition of new resource lands beneficial to wildlife will help preserve habitat in perpetuity and to lessen fragmentation. This plan has the objective of providing sanctuary to migratory species as a group, not just priority waterfowl species. White-tailed deer management would continue through the Holt Collier NWR hunt program and eventually at Theodore Roosevelt NWR. Integrated damage control of invasive and nuisance species would lessen the negative effects on the refuges’ habitats. Another primary focus of the plan is to create a visitor services program to enhance environmental education and outreach efforts substantially and to reach larger numbers of residents, students, educators, and visitors. It places priority on wildlife-dependent uses, such as hunting, fishing and wildlife observation. Priority public uses, such as hunting, are allowed at Holt Collier NWR. At a time when sufficient land is amassed and resources are available to allow for ample public use opportunities, Theodore Roosevelt NWR would be opened to hunting. Public use would be phased into both refuges. Compatibility determinations are updated for the priority public uses and for research and monitoring. For both refuges, some commercial uses would be allowed under a Commercial Special Use Permit, including commercial photography, firewood gathering, timber harvest for forest management, and trapping. The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2004 authorized construction of a Visitor Center to provide visitor services and to promote the Delta area’s natural resources and cultural heritage. Funding was appropriated in 2009, in the amount of $2.6 million for the building VerDate Sep<11>2014 13:09 Jan 22, 2016 Jkt 238001 of the Theodore Roosevelt NWR Visitor Center. On February 11, 2015, a total of 6.58 acres (originally proposed as approximately 5 acres) located off of Highway 61 in Sharkey County, Mississippi) was donated to the Service to construct a Visitor Center. A major focus of this plan and Service efforts will be to build and staff the Visitor Center. Since the location is secured for the Visitor Center, regular Service procedures will be followed for building design and construction. Staffing is proposed to run the Visitor Center, to provide environmental and interpretive programs, and to coordinate volunteers. Positions include a Park Ranger, Wildlife Refuge Manager and a Maintenance Worker. This CCP assumes a modest growth of refuge resources over its 15-year implementation period, with three new positions as new funding is available. Current partnerships would be maintained and new ones would be sought. Daily operation of the refuges will be guided by this CCP and through the implementation of nine projects and six step-down management plans as detailed in the CCP. Authority This notice is published under the authority of the National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997 (16 U.S.C. 668dd et seq.). Dated: November 10, 2015. Brett E. Hunter, Deputy Chief, National Wildlife Refuge System, Southeast Region. [FR Doc. 2016–01414 Filed 1–22–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4333–15–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service [FWS–R4–R–2015–N235]; [FXRS12650400000S3–123–FF04R02000] Cat Island National Wildlife Refuge, LA; Final Comprehensive Conservation Plan and Finding of No Significant Impact for Environmental Assessment Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability. AGENCY: We, the Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the availability of the final comprehensive conservation plan (CCP) and finding of no significant impact for the environmental assessment for Cat Island National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) in West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana. In the final SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00046 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 4061 CCP, we describe how we will manage this refuge for the next 15 years. ADDRESSES: You may obtain a copy of the CCP by writing to: Lower Mississippi River NWR Complex, P.O. Box 217, Sibley, MS 39165. Alternatively, you may download the document from our Internet Site at http://southeast.fws.gov/planning under ‘‘Final Documents.’’ FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jimmy Laurent, Project Leader, Lower Mississippi River NWR Complex, by telephone at (601) 442–6696 or by email at jimmy_laurent@fws.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Introduction With this notice, we finalize the CCP process for Cat Island NWR. We started the process through a notice in the Federal Register on November 25, 2013 (78 FR 70318). For more about the process, see that notice. Cat Island NWR was established in October 2000, as the 526th refuge in the National Wildlife Refuge System. It is located in West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana, near the town of St. Francisville, 25 miles north of Baton Rouge. Acquisition has occurred in stages, beginning in 2000 when The Nature Conservancy (TNC) of Louisiana made the first purchase of about 9,500 acres of forested wetlands. That and subsequent acquisitions by TNC were purchased by the Service using both the Land and Water Conservation Fund and Migratory Bird Conservation Fund. Today, the refuge encompasses 10,473 acres. The congressionally approved acquisition boundary encloses 36,500 acres. Cat Island NWR was created by Congress through Public Law 106–369, which states: ‘‘The purposes for which the Refuge is established and shall be managed are: (1) To conserve, restore, and manage habitats as necessary to contribute to the migratory bird population goals and habitat objective [sic] as established through the Lower Mississippi Valley Joint Venture; (2) to conserve, restore, and manage the significant aquatic resource values associated with the area’s forested wetlands and to achieve the habitat objectives of the Mississippi River Aquatic Resources Management Plan; (3) to conserve, enhance, and restore the historic native bottomland community characteristics of the lower Mississippi alluvial valley and its associated fish, wildlife, and plant species; (4) to conserve, enhance, and restore habitat to maintain and assist in the recovery of endangered and threatened plants and animals; and (5) to encourage the use of E:\FR\FM\25JAN1.SGM 25JAN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 15 (Monday, January 25, 2016)]
[Notices]
[Pages 4060-4061]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-01414]


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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Fish and Wildlife Service

[FWS-R4-R-2015-N236]; [FXRS12610400000S3-167-FF04R02000]


Theodore Roosevelt and Holt Collier National Wildlife Refuges, 
Mississippi Final Comprehensive Conservation Plan and Finding of No 
Significant Impact for the Environmental Assessment

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability.

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

SUMMARY: We, the Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the 
availability of the final Comprehensive Conservation plan (CCP) and 
finding of no significant impact for the environmental assessment for 
Theodore Roosevelt and Holt Collier National Wildlife Refuges (NWRs), 
Washington and Sharkey Counties, Mississippi. In the final CCP, we 
describe how we will manage the two refuges for the next 15 years.

ADDRESSES: You may obtain a copy of the CCP by downloading the document 
from our Internet Site at http://southeast.fws.gov/planning under 
``Final Documents.''

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mike Rich, Project Leader, at (662) 
836-3004 (phone) or mike_rich@fws.gov (email).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Introduction

    With this notice, we complete the CCP process for Theodore 
Roosevelt and Holt Collier NWRs. We started the process through a 
notice in the Federal Register (78 FR 45953) on July 30, 2013. For more 
about the process, see that notice.
    The Theodore Roosevelt NWR Complex (Complex) is comprised of seven 
refuges: Hillside (est. 1975), Holt Collier (est. 2004), Mathews Brake 
(est. 1980), Morgan Brake (est. 1977), Panther Swamp (est. 1978), 
Theodore Roosevelt (est. 2004), and Yazoo National Wildlife Refuge 
(est. 1936).
    The Complex was originally known as the Yazoo National Wildlife 
Refuge Complex and then briefly named the Central Mississippi National 
Wildlife Refuge Complex. On January 23, 2004, section 145 of Public Law 
108-199, the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2004, was signed into 
law by then President George W. Bush. The Act renamed the Complex as 
the Theodore Roosevelt National Wildlife Refuge Complex. It designated 
the geographically separate Bogue Phalia Unit of Yazoo NWR as Holt 
Collier NWR. The refuge consists of 2,233 acres with an approved 
acquisition boundary of 18,000 acres. The Service lists its purpose as 
being designated under the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act (16 
U.S.C. 664): It ``shall be administered . . . for the conservation, 
maintenance, and management of wildlife, resources thereof, and its 
habitat thereon.''
    The Act also directed the Secretary of the Interior to establish 
the 6,600-acre Theodore Roosevelt NWR. No additional land was purchased 
for the two new refuges, but rather they were assembled from disjunct 
Farm Service Agency (FSA, formerly known as Farmers Home 
Administration) lands already in Service possession. To date 1,674 
acres have been acquired in the Theodore Roosevelt NWR. The Service 
lists both new refuges as being established ``for conservation 
purposes.''
    The habitat consists mainly of converted agricultural lands now 
reforested to trees more indicative of the native bottomland hardwood 
forest. Farmlands and open water also occur. The refuge is not open to 
the public. There are no public facilities located on either refuge.

Background

The CCP Process

    The National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) System Improvement Act of 1997 
(Improvement Act) requires us to develop a CCP for each national 
wildlife refuge. CCPs are developed to provide refuge managers with a 
15-year plan for achieving refuges' purposes and contributing toward 
the mission of the NWR System, consistent with sound principles of fish 
and wildlife management, conservation, legal mandates, and our 
policies. CCPs describe a broad management direction for conserving 
wildlife and their habitats. They propose wildlife-dependent 
recreational opportunities to be made available to the public. These 
include opportunities for hunting, fishing, wildlife observation, 
wildlife photography, and environmental education and interpretation. 
We will review the CCP annually and revise it as needed in accordance 
with the Improvement Act.

Comments

    We made the Draft CCP and Environmental Assessment available online 
for a 30-day public review and comment period via a Federal Register 
notice (80 FR 13420) on March 13, 2015. A total of seven comments were

[[Page 4061]]

received by mail, email or verbally at the April 2, 2015, public 
meeting in Rolling Fork, Mississippi. Comments supporting the plan and 
preferred alternative were received from the Mississippi Department of 
Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks, Safari Club International, and 
Mississippi Wildlife.

CCP Alternatives, Including Our Preferred Alternative

    We developed three alternatives for managing the refuge 
(Alternatives A, B, and C), with Alternative B, Minimally Developed 
Refuges, selected for implementation. As these are newer refuges 
authorized by Congress in 2004, the focus of this plan is to develop 
them. Therefore, our efforts over the next 15 years will be focused on 
land acquisition to build-out the refuges to their approved acquisition 
boundaries. Passive habitat protection and the addition of new resource 
lands beneficial to wildlife will help preserve habitat in perpetuity 
and to lessen fragmentation. This plan has the objective of providing 
sanctuary to migratory species as a group, not just priority waterfowl 
species. White-tailed deer management would continue through the Holt 
Collier NWR hunt program and eventually at Theodore Roosevelt NWR. 
Integrated damage control of invasive and nuisance species would lessen 
the negative effects on the refuges' habitats.
    Another primary focus of the plan is to create a visitor services 
program to enhance environmental education and outreach efforts 
substantially and to reach larger numbers of residents, students, 
educators, and visitors. It places priority on wildlife-dependent uses, 
such as hunting, fishing and wildlife observation. Priority public 
uses, such as hunting, are allowed at Holt Collier NWR. At a time when 
sufficient land is amassed and resources are available to allow for 
ample public use opportunities, Theodore Roosevelt NWR would be opened 
to hunting. Public use would be phased into both refuges. Compatibility 
determinations are updated for the priority public uses and for 
research and monitoring. For both refuges, some commercial uses would 
be allowed under a Commercial Special Use Permit, including commercial 
photography, firewood gathering, timber harvest for forest management, 
and trapping.
    The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2004 authorized construction 
of a Visitor Center to provide visitor services and to promote the 
Delta area's natural resources and cultural heritage. Funding was 
appropriated in 2009, in the amount of $2.6 million for the building of 
the Theodore Roosevelt NWR Visitor Center. On February 11, 2015, a 
total of 6.58 acres (originally proposed as approximately 5 acres) 
located off of Highway 61 in Sharkey County, Mississippi) was donated 
to the Service to construct a Visitor Center. A major focus of this 
plan and Service efforts will be to build and staff the Visitor Center. 
Since the location is secured for the Visitor Center, regular Service 
procedures will be followed for building design and construction. 
Staffing is proposed to run the Visitor Center, to provide 
environmental and interpretive programs, and to coordinate volunteers. 
Positions include a Park Ranger, Wildlife Refuge Manager and a 
Maintenance Worker.
    This CCP assumes a modest growth of refuge resources over its 15-
year implementation period, with three new positions as new funding is 
available. Current partnerships would be maintained and new ones would 
be sought. Daily operation of the refuges will be guided by this CCP 
and through the implementation of nine projects and six step-down 
management plans as detailed in the CCP.

Authority

    This notice is published under the authority of the National 
Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997 (16 U.S.C. 668dd et 
seq.).

     Dated: November 10, 2015.
Brett E. Hunter,
Deputy Chief, National Wildlife Refuge System, Southeast Region.
[FR Doc. 2016-01414 Filed 1-22-16; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4333-15-P