Draft Programmatic Candidate Conservation Agreement With Assurances, Draft Environmental Assessment, and Receipt of Application for Enhancement of Survival Permit for the Fisher in Western Washington, 10269-10271 [2016-04294]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 39 / Monday, February 29, 2016 / Notices directed to the OMB USCIS Desk Officer via email at oira_submission@ omb.eop.gov. Comments may also be submitted via fax at (202) 395–5806 (This is not a toll-free number). All submissions received must include the agency name and the OMB Control Number 1615–0014. You may wish to consider limiting the amount of personal information that you provide in any voluntary submission you make. For additional information please read the Privacy Act notice that is available via the link in the footer of http://www.regulations.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: USCIS, Office of Policy and Strategy, Regulatory Coordination Division, Samantha Deshommes, Acting Chief, 20 Massachusetts Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20529–2140, Telephone number (202) 272–8377 (This is not a toll-free number. Comments are not accepted via telephone message). Please note contact information provided here is solely for questions regarding this notice. It is not for individual case status inquiries. Applicants seeking information about the status of their individual cases can check Case Status Online, available at the USCIS Web site at http:// www.uscis.gov, or call the USCIS National Customer Service Center at (800) 375–5283; TTY (800) 767–1833. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Comments You may access the information collection instrument with instructions, or additional information by visiting the Federal eRulemaking Portal site at: http://www.regulations.gov and enter USCIS–2006–0072 in the search box. Written comments and suggestions from the public and affected agencies should address one or more of the following four points: (1) Evaluate 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) Evaluate the accuracy of the agency’s estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (3) Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:23 Feb 26, 2016 Jkt 238001 other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses. Overview of This Information Collection (1) Type of Information Collection Request: Revision of a Currently Approved Collection. This is a change from the type of collection indicated in the 60-day Federal Register Notice published December 30, 2015 at 80 FR 81556. (2) Title of the Form/Collection: Affidavit of Support. (3) Agency form number, if any, and the applicable component of the DHS sponsoring the collection: I–134; USCIS. (4) Affected public who will be asked or required to respond, as well as a brief abstract: Primary: Individuals or households. This information collection is necessary to determine if at the time of application into the United States, the applicant is likely to become a public charge. (5) An estimate of the total number of respondents and the amount of time estimated for an average respondent to respond: The estimated total number of respondents for the information collection I–134 is 18,460 and the estimated hour burden per response is 1.5 hours. (6) An estimate of the total public burden (in hours) associated with the collection: The total estimated annual hour burden associated with this collection is 27,690 hours. (7) An estimate of the total public burden (in cost) associated with the collection: The total estimated annual cost burden associated with this collection is $69,225. Samantha Deshommes, Acting Chief, Regulatory Coordination Division, Office of Policy and Strategy, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security. [FR Doc. 2016–04089 Filed 2–26–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9111–97–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service [FWS–R1–ES–2016–N019; FXES11120100000–167–FF01E00000] Draft Programmatic Candidate Conservation Agreement With Assurances, Draft Environmental Assessment, and Receipt of Application for Enhancement of Survival Permit for the Fisher in Western Washington AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. PO 00000 Frm 00065 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 10269 Receipt of application; notice of availability and request for comments. ACTION: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), received an application from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) for an enhancement of survival (EOS) permit under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA). The permit application includes a draft programmatic candidate conservation agreement with assurances (CCAAs) for the fisher in western Washington. The Service also announces the availability of a draft environmental assessment (EA) addressing the draft CCAA and issuance of the requested EOS permit in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended (NEPA). We invite comments from all interested parties on the application, the draft CCAA, and the draft EA. DATES: To ensure consideration, written comments must be received from interested parties by March 30, 2016. ADDRESSES: To request further information or submit written comments, please use one of the following methods, and note that your information request or comments are in reference to the ‘‘Fisher CCAA.’’ • Internet: You may view or download copies of the draft CCAA and the draft EA and obtain additional information on the Internet at http:// www.fws.gov/wafwo/. • Email: wfwocomments@fws.gov. Include ‘‘Fisher CCAA’’ in the subject line of the message or comments. • U.S. Mail: Tim Romanski, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Washington Fish and Wildlife Office; 510 Desmond Drive SE., Suite 102; Lacey, WA 98503. • In-Person Drop-off, Viewing or Pickup: Please call 360–753–5823 to make an appointment (necessary for viewing or picking up documents only) during normal business hours at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Washington Fish and Wildlife Office; 510 Desmond Drive SE., Suite 102; Lacey, WA 98503. Written comments can be dropped off during regular business hours at the above address on or before the closing date of the public comment period (see DATES). FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tim Romanski, Conservation Planning and Hydropower Branch Manager, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Washington Fish and Wildlife Office (see ADDRESSES); telephone: 360–753–5823. If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf, please call the Federal Information Relay Service at 800–877–8339. SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\29FEN1.SGM 29FEN1 10270 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 39 / Monday, February 29, 2016 / Notices We received an application from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) for an enhancement of survival (EOS) permit under section 10(a)(1)(A) of the ESA for incidental take of the fisher (Pekania pennanti), a species currently considered a candidate for listing as threatened or endangered under the ESA. The permit application includes a draft programmatic candidate conservation agreement with assurances (CCAAs) for the fisher in western Washington. The Service also announces the availability of a draft environmental assessment (EA) addressing the draft CCAA and issuance of the requested EOS permit in accordance with NEPA (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.). We invite comments from all interested parties on the application, the draft CCAA, and the draft EA. The application includes a CCAA covering fisher and its habitat on private lands in western Washington. The Service and WDFW prepared the CCAA to provide non-Federal landowners with the opportunity to voluntarily conserve the fisher and its habitat while carrying out specific land management activities commonly practiced on forest lands, as defined in the Washington State Forest Practices Act as of February 1, 2015. Covered activities include but are not limited to timber harvest, reforestation, road and trail construction, water crossing structure construction, and other forest practice hydraulic projects, transport of timber and rock, site preparation, collection of minor forest products, fire suppression, and recreation, as defined in the draft CCAA. asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background Private and other non-Federal property owners are encouraged to enter into CCAAs, in which they voluntarily undertake management activities on their properties to enhance, restore, or maintain habitat benefiting species that are proposed for listing under the ESA, candidates for listing, or species that may become candidates or proposed for listing. EOS permits are issued to applicants in association with approved CCAAs to authorize incidental take of the covered species from covered activities, should the species become listed. Through a CCAA and its associated EOS permit, the Service provides assurances to property owners that they will not be subjected to increased land use restrictions if the covered species become listed under the ESA in the future, provided certain conditions are met. Application requirements and issuance criteria for EOS permits for VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:23 Feb 26, 2016 Jkt 238001 CCAAs are found in the Code of Regulations (CFR) at 50 CFR 17.22(d) and 17.32(d), respectively. See also our joint policy on CCAAs, which we published in the Federal Register with the Department of Commerce’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Marine Fisheries Service (64 FR 32726; June 17, 1999). On April 8, 2004, the Service published a 12–month status review (69 FR 18769) finding that listing the West Coast Distinct Population Segment (DPS) of fisher as threatened or endangered under the ESA (16 U.S.C. 1538) was warranted, but precluded by higher priority actions. On October 7, 2014, we published a proposed rule (79 FR 60419) to list the West Coast DPS of fisher as threatened under the ESA. Due to substantial disagreement regarding available information, the Service issued a 6–month extension to collect and review additional information and make a final determination (80 FR 19953). A regulation implementing the proposed rule or a notice that the proposed regulation is being withdrawn will be issued no later than April 7, 2016. In anticipation of the potential listing of fisher under the ESA, WDFW requested assistance from the Service in developing a CCAA on behalf of private landowners in western Washington. Proposed Action The Proposed Action Alternative is the issuance of the requested EOS permit with a 20–year term based on WDFW’s commitment to implement the proposed CCAA including issuance of Certificates of Inclusion (CI) to participating non-Federal landowners. The proposed CCAA would implement conservation measures that contribute to the recovery of the fisher. Take authorization would become effective if the species becomes listed, as long as the enrolled landowner is in compliance with the terms and conditions of the CCAA, CI, and the EOS permit. The CCAA, the ESO permit, and the CIs would provide incentives for nonFederal landowners to participate in conservation efforts expected to support reintroduction of the fisher within the western portions of its historical range in Washington. National Environmental Policy Act Compliance Approval of a programmatic CCAA and issuance of the associated EOS permit are Federal actions that trigger the need for compliance with NEPA. Pursuant to NEPA, we prepared a draft EA to analyze the environmental impacts related to the issuance of the PO 00000 Frm 00066 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 requested EOS permit and implementation of the associated programmatic CCAA. The EA analyses two alternatives: A ‘‘No-action’’ alternative, and the proposed action. No-action alternative: Under the Noaction alternative, the Service would not issue the requested EOS permit and the proposed CCAA would not be implemented. Under this alternative, WDFW would not enroll landowners in the CCAA and no voluntary conservation measures would be implemented. WDFW would likely continue their efforts to recover fishers in the State, focusing on the protection and monitoring of previously reintroduced individuals. Non-Federal landowners would not receive assurances that additional conservation measures or any additional land, water, or resource use restrictions could be required if the covered species becomes listed as threatened or endangered under the ESA. Proposed action alternative: The proposed action alternative is a programmatic approach, in which the Service would issue the requested EOS permit with a 20-year term to WDFW. The WDFW would implement the proposed CCAA including issuance of CIs to participating non-Federal landowners. The proposed CCAA provides conservation measures that would contribute to the recovery of the fisher while providing coverage exempting take that may occur incidental to activities covered under the CCAA if the species becomes listed. Public Comments You may submit your comments by one of the methods listed in the ADDRESSES section. We specifically request information, views, opinions, or suggestions from the public on our proposed Federal action, including identification of any other aspects of the human environment not already identified in the EA pursuant to NEPA regulations at 40 CFR 1506.6. Further, we specifically solicit information regarding the adequacy of the draft CCAA pursuant to the requirements for permits at 50 CFR parts 13 and 17, and information and comments regarding the following issues: 1. The direct, indirect, and cumulative effects that implementation of the CCAA could have on endangered and threatened species; 2. Other reasonable alternatives consistent with the purpose of the proposed CCAA as described above, and their associated effects; 3. Measures that would minimize and mitigate potentially adverse effects of the proposed action; E:\FR\FM\29FEN1.SGM 29FEN1 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 39 / Monday, February 29, 2016 / Notices 4. Identification of any impacts on the human environment that should have been analyzed in the draft EA pursuant to NEPA; 5. Other plans or projects that might be relevant to this action; 6. The proposed term of the enhancement of survival permit; and 7. Any other information pertinent to evaluating the effects of the proposed action on the human environment. asabaliauskas on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Public Availability of Comments All comments and materials we receive become part of the public record associated with this action. Before including your address, phone number, email address, or other personally identifiable information in your comments, you should be aware that your entire comment—including your personally identifiable information— may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personally identifiable information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. All submissions from organizations or businesses, and from individuals identifying themselves as representatives or officials of organizations or businesses, will be made available for public disclosure in their entirety. Comments and materials we receive, as well as supporting documentation we used in preparing the draft EA, will be available for public inspection by appointment, during normal business hours, at our Washington Fish and Wildlife Office (see ADDRESSES). Next Steps After completion of the EA based on consideration of public comments, we will determine whether approval and implementation of the draft programmatic CCAA warrants a finding of no significant impact or whether an environmental impact statement should be prepared pursuant to NEPA. We will evaluate the programmatic CCAA, the permit application, associated documents, and any comments we receive to determine if the permit application meets the criteria for issuance of an EOS permit under section 10(a)(1)(A) of the ESA. We will also evaluate whether the proposed permit action would comply with section 7 of the ESA by conducting an intra-Service section 7 consultation. We will consider the results of this consultation, in combination with the above findings, in our final analysis to determine whether or not to issue an EOS permit to WDFW. We will not make the final NEPA and permit decisions until after the end of the 30-day public comment period VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:23 Feb 26, 2016 Jkt 238001 described in this notice, and we will fully consider all comments we receive during the public comment period. If we determine that the permit issuance requirements are met, the Service will issue an EOS permit to WDFW. The WDFW would then begin enrolling non-Federal landowners that agree to implement the actions described in the CCAA in order to receive coverage for incidental take of fisher in western Washington under the WDFW EOS permit if the species becomes listed under the ESA. Authority We provide this notice in accordance with the requirements of section 10 of the ESA (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), and NEPA (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.) and their implementing regulations (50 CFR 17.22 and 40 CFR 1506.6, respectively). Dated: February 10, 2016. Stephen Zylstra, Acting Deputy Regional Director, Pacific Region, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Portland, Oregon. [FR Doc. 2016–04294 Filed 2–26–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4333–15–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service [FWS–R2–ES–2016–N003; FXES11130200000–167–FF02ENEH00] Endangered and Threatened Species Permit Applications Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice of receipt of applications; request for public comment. AGENCY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, invite the public to comment on the following applications to conduct certain activities with endangered or threatened species. The Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act), prohibits activities with endangered and threatened species unless a Federal permit allows such activities. Both the Act and the National Environmental Policy Act require that we invite public comment before issuing these permits. DATES: To ensure consideration, written comments must be received on or before March 30, 2016. ADDRESSES: Susan Jacobsen, Chief, Division of Classification and Restoration, by U.S. mail at Division of Classification and Recovery, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, P.O. Box 1306, Albuquerque, NM 87103; or by telephone at 505–248–6920. Please refer SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00067 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 10271 to the respective permit number for each application when submitting comments. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Susan Jacobsen, Chief, Division of Classification and Restoration, by U.S. mail at P.O. Box 1306, Albuquerque, NM 87103; or by telephone at 505–248– 6920. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Act (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) prohibits activities with endangered and threatened species unless a Federal permit allows such activities. Along with our implementing regulations in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) at 50 CFR 17, the Act provides for permits, and requires that we invite public comment before issuing these permits. A permit granted by us under section 10(a)(1)(A) of the Act authorizes applicants to conduct activities with U.S. endangered or threatened species for scientific purposes, enhancement of survival or propagation, or interstate commerce. Our regulations regarding implementation of section 10(a)(1)(A) permits are found at 50 CFR 17.22 for endangered wildlife species, 50 CFR 17.32 for threatened wildlife species, 50 CFR 17.62 for endangered plant species, and 50 CFR 17.72 for threatened plant species. Applications Available for Review and Comment We invite local, State, Tribal, and Federal agencies and the public to comment on the following applications. Please refer to the appropriate permit number (e.g., Permit No. TE–123456) when requesting application documents and when submitting comments. Documents and other information the applicants have submitted with these applications are available for review, subject to the requirements of the Privacy Act (5 U.S.C. 552a) and Freedom of Information Act (5 U.S.C. 552). Permit TE–81811B Applicant: Jeremy Henson, Round Rock, Texas. Applicant requests a new permit for research and recovery purposes to conduct presence/absence surveys for the following species in Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, and Oklahoma: • Interior least tern (Sterna antillarum) • northern aplomado falcon (Falco femoralis septentrionalis) • red-cockaded woodpecker (Picoides borealis) • Houston toad (Bufo houstonensis) • golden-cheeked warbler (Dendroica chrysoparia) • Navasota ladies’-tresses (Spiranthes parksii) E:\FR\FM\29FEN1.SGM 29FEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 39 (Monday, February 29, 2016)]
[Notices]
[Pages 10269-10271]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-04294]


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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Fish and Wildlife Service

[FWS-R1-ES-2016-N019; FXES11120100000-167-FF01E00000]


Draft Programmatic Candidate Conservation Agreement With 
Assurances, Draft Environmental Assessment, and Receipt of Application 
for Enhancement of Survival Permit for the Fisher in Western Washington

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Receipt of application; notice of availability and request for 
comments.

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

SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), received an 
application from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) 
for an enhancement of survival (EOS) permit under the Endangered 
Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA). The permit application includes 
a draft programmatic candidate conservation agreement with assurances 
(CCAAs) for the fisher in western Washington. The Service also 
announces the availability of a draft environmental assessment (EA) 
addressing the draft CCAA and issuance of the requested EOS permit in 
accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as 
amended (NEPA). We invite comments from all interested parties on the 
application, the draft CCAA, and the draft EA.

DATES: To ensure consideration, written comments must be received from 
interested parties by March 30, 2016.

ADDRESSES: To request further information or submit written comments, 
please use one of the following methods, and note that your information 
request or comments are in reference to the ``Fisher CCAA.''
     Internet: You may view or download copies of the draft 
CCAA and the draft EA and obtain additional information on the Internet 
at http://www.fws.gov/wafwo/.
     Email: wfwocomments@fws.gov. Include ``Fisher CCAA'' in 
the subject line of the message or comments.
     U.S. Mail: Tim Romanski, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; 
Washington Fish and Wildlife Office; 510 Desmond Drive SE., Suite 102; 
Lacey, WA 98503.
     In-Person Drop-off, Viewing or Pickup: Please call 360-
753-5823 to make an appointment (necessary for viewing or picking up 
documents only) during normal business hours at the U.S. Fish and 
Wildlife Service; Washington Fish and Wildlife Office; 510 Desmond 
Drive SE., Suite 102; Lacey, WA 98503. Written comments can be dropped 
off during regular business hours at the above address on or before the 
closing date of the public comment period (see DATES).

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tim Romanski, Conservation Planning 
and Hydropower Branch Manager, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 
Washington Fish and Wildlife Office (see ADDRESSES); telephone: 360-
753-5823. If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf, please 
call the Federal Information Relay Service at 800-877-8339.

[[Page 10270]]


SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: We received an application from the 
Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) for an enhancement of 
survival (EOS) permit under section 10(a)(1)(A) of the ESA for 
incidental take of the fisher (Pekania pennanti), a species currently 
considered a candidate for listing as threatened or endangered under 
the ESA. The permit application includes a draft programmatic candidate 
conservation agreement with assurances (CCAAs) for the fisher in 
western Washington. The Service also announces the availability of a 
draft environmental assessment (EA) addressing the draft CCAA and 
issuance of the requested EOS permit in accordance with NEPA (42 U.S.C. 
4321 et seq.). We invite comments from all interested parties on the 
application, the draft CCAA, and the draft EA.
    The application includes a CCAA covering fisher and its habitat on 
private lands in western Washington. The Service and WDFW prepared the 
CCAA to provide non-Federal landowners with the opportunity to 
voluntarily conserve the fisher and its habitat while carrying out 
specific land management activities commonly practiced on forest lands, 
as defined in the Washington State Forest Practices Act as of February 
1, 2015. Covered activities include but are not limited to timber 
harvest, reforestation, road and trail construction, water crossing 
structure construction, and other forest practice hydraulic projects, 
transport of timber and rock, site preparation, collection of minor 
forest products, fire suppression, and recreation, as defined in the 
draft CCAA.

Background

    Private and other non-Federal property owners are encouraged to 
enter into CCAAs, in which they voluntarily undertake management 
activities on their properties to enhance, restore, or maintain habitat 
benefiting species that are proposed for listing under the ESA, 
candidates for listing, or species that may become candidates or 
proposed for listing. EOS permits are issued to applicants in 
association with approved CCAAs to authorize incidental take of the 
covered species from covered activities, should the species become 
listed. Through a CCAA and its associated EOS permit, the Service 
provides assurances to property owners that they will not be subjected 
to increased land use restrictions if the covered species become listed 
under the ESA in the future, provided certain conditions are met.
    Application requirements and issuance criteria for EOS permits for 
CCAAs are found in the Code of Regulations (CFR) at 50 CFR 17.22(d) and 
17.32(d), respectively. See also our joint policy on CCAAs, which we 
published in the Federal Register with the Department of Commerce's 
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Marine 
Fisheries Service (64 FR 32726; June 17, 1999).
    On April 8, 2004, the Service published a 12-month status review 
(69 FR 18769) finding that listing the West Coast Distinct Population 
Segment (DPS) of fisher as threatened or endangered under the ESA (16 
U.S.C. 1538) was warranted, but precluded by higher priority actions. 
On October 7, 2014, we published a proposed rule (79 FR 60419) to list 
the West Coast DPS of fisher as threatened under the ESA. Due to 
substantial disagreement regarding available information, the Service 
issued a 6-month extension to collect and review additional information 
and make a final determination (80 FR 19953). A regulation implementing 
the proposed rule or a notice that the proposed regulation is being 
withdrawn will be issued no later than April 7, 2016. In anticipation 
of the potential listing of fisher under the ESA, WDFW requested 
assistance from the Service in developing a CCAA on behalf of private 
landowners in western Washington.

Proposed Action

    The Proposed Action Alternative is the issuance of the requested 
EOS permit with a 20-year term based on WDFW's commitment to implement 
the proposed CCAA including issuance of Certificates of Inclusion (CI) 
to participating non-Federal landowners. The proposed CCAA would 
implement conservation measures that contribute to the recovery of the 
fisher. Take authorization would become effective if the species 
becomes listed, as long as the enrolled landowner is in compliance with 
the terms and conditions of the CCAA, CI, and the EOS permit. The CCAA, 
the ESO permit, and the CIs would provide incentives for non-Federal 
landowners to participate in conservation efforts expected to support 
reintroduction of the fisher within the western portions of its 
historical range in Washington.

National Environmental Policy Act Compliance

    Approval of a programmatic CCAA and issuance of the associated EOS 
permit are Federal actions that trigger the need for compliance with 
NEPA. Pursuant to NEPA, we prepared a draft EA to analyze the 
environmental impacts related to the issuance of the requested EOS 
permit and implementation of the associated programmatic CCAA. The EA 
analyses two alternatives: A ``No-action'' alternative, and the 
proposed action.
    No-action alternative: Under the No-action alternative, the Service 
would not issue the requested EOS permit and the proposed CCAA would 
not be implemented. Under this alternative, WDFW would not enroll 
landowners in the CCAA and no voluntary conservation measures would be 
implemented. WDFW would likely continue their efforts to recover 
fishers in the State, focusing on the protection and monitoring of 
previously reintroduced individuals. Non-Federal landowners would not 
receive assurances that additional conservation measures or any 
additional land, water, or resource use restrictions could be required 
if the covered species becomes listed as threatened or endangered under 
the ESA.
    Proposed action alternative: The proposed action alternative is a 
programmatic approach, in which the Service would issue the requested 
EOS permit with a 20-year term to WDFW. The WDFW would implement the 
proposed CCAA including issuance of CIs to participating non-Federal 
landowners. The proposed CCAA provides conservation measures that would 
contribute to the recovery of the fisher while providing coverage 
exempting take that may occur incidental to activities covered under 
the CCAA if the species becomes listed.

Public Comments

    You may submit your comments by one of the methods listed in the 
ADDRESSES section. We specifically request information, views, 
opinions, or suggestions from the public on our proposed Federal 
action, including identification of any other aspects of the human 
environment not already identified in the EA pursuant to NEPA 
regulations at 40 CFR 1506.6. Further, we specifically solicit 
information regarding the adequacy of the draft CCAA pursuant to the 
requirements for permits at 50 CFR parts 13 and 17, and information and 
comments regarding the following issues:
    1. The direct, indirect, and cumulative effects that implementation 
of the CCAA could have on endangered and threatened species;
    2. Other reasonable alternatives consistent with the purpose of the 
proposed CCAA as described above, and their associated effects;
    3. Measures that would minimize and mitigate potentially adverse 
effects of the proposed action;

[[Page 10271]]

    4. Identification of any impacts on the human environment that 
should have been analyzed in the draft EA pursuant to NEPA;
    5. Other plans or projects that might be relevant to this action;
    6. The proposed term of the enhancement of survival permit; and
    7. Any other information pertinent to evaluating the effects of the 
proposed action on the human environment.

Public Availability of Comments

    All comments and materials we receive become part of the public 
record associated with this action. Before including your address, 
phone number, email address, or other personally identifiable 
information in your comments, you should be aware that your entire 
comment--including your personally identifiable information--may be 
made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your 
comment to withhold your personally identifiable information from 
public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. All 
submissions from organizations or businesses, and from individuals 
identifying themselves as representatives or officials of organizations 
or businesses, will be made available for public disclosure in their 
entirety. Comments and materials we receive, as well as supporting 
documentation we used in preparing the draft EA, will be available for 
public inspection by appointment, during normal business hours, at our 
Washington Fish and Wildlife Office (see ADDRESSES).

Next Steps

    After completion of the EA based on consideration of public 
comments, we will determine whether approval and implementation of the 
draft programmatic CCAA warrants a finding of no significant impact or 
whether an environmental impact statement should be prepared pursuant 
to NEPA. We will evaluate the programmatic CCAA, the permit 
application, associated documents, and any comments we receive to 
determine if the permit application meets the criteria for issuance of 
an EOS permit under section 10(a)(1)(A) of the ESA. We will also 
evaluate whether the proposed permit action would comply with section 7 
of the ESA by conducting an intra-Service section 7 consultation. We 
will consider the results of this consultation, in combination with the 
above findings, in our final analysis to determine whether or not to 
issue an EOS permit to WDFW. We will not make the final NEPA and permit 
decisions until after the end of the 30-day public comment period 
described in this notice, and we will fully consider all comments we 
receive during the public comment period.
    If we determine that the permit issuance requirements are met, the 
Service will issue an EOS permit to WDFW. The WDFW would then begin 
enrolling non-Federal landowners that agree to implement the actions 
described in the CCAA in order to receive coverage for incidental take 
of fisher in western Washington under the WDFW EOS permit if the 
species becomes listed under the ESA.

Authority

    We provide this notice in accordance with the requirements of 
section 10 of the ESA (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), and NEPA (42 U.S.C. 
4321 et seq.) and their implementing regulations (50 CFR 17.22 and 40 
CFR 1506.6, respectively).

    Dated: February 10, 2016.
Stephen Zylstra,
Acting Deputy Regional Director, Pacific Region, U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service, Portland, Oregon.
[FR Doc. 2016-04294 Filed 2-26-16; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4333-15-P