Notice of Amended Proposed Withdrawal, Release of Draft Environmental Impact Statement, and Notice of Public Meetings; Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Wyoming, 96478-96481 [2016-31629]

Download as PDF srobinson on DSK5SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES 96478 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 251 / Friday, December 30, 2016 / Notices the Tribe’s fee-to-trust application and a secretarial determination pursuant to Section 2719(b)(1)(A) of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. The EIS will identify and evaluate issues related to these approvals, and will also evaluate a range of reasonable alternatives. Possible alternatives currently under consideration include: (1) An expanded site alternative that involves acquiring additional adjacent fee-land into trust for the development of ancillary infrastructure and overflow parking; (2) a reduced-intensity casino alternative; (3) an alternate-use (non-casino) alternative; and (4) an alternative involving expansion of the Tribe’s existing casino. The range of issues and alternatives may be expanded based on comments received during the scoping process. Areas of environmental concern identified for analysis in the EIS include land resources; water resources; air quality; noise; biological resources; cultural/historical/archaeological resources; resource use patterns; traffic and transportation; public health and safety; hazardous materials and hazardous wastes; public services and utilities; socioeconomics; environmental justice; visual resources/aesthetics; and cumulative, indirect, and growthinducing effects. The range of issues and alternatives to be addressed in the EIS may be expanded or reduced based on comments received in response to this notice and at the public scoping meeting. Additional information, including a map of the proposed trust property, is available by contacting the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this notice. Public Comment Availability: Comments, including names and addresses of respondents, will be available for public review at the BIA 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, telephone 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 in your comment that your personal identifying information be withheld from public review, the BIA cannot guarantee that this will occur. Authority: This notice is published in accordance with sections 1503.1 and 1506.6 of the Council on Environmental Quality Regulations (40 CFR parts 1500 through 1508) implementing the procedural requirements of the National VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:18 Dec 29, 2016 Jkt 241001 Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended (42 U.S.C. 4321–4345 et seq.), and the Department of the Interior National Environmental Policy Act Implementation Policy (43 CFR part 46), and is in the exercise of authority delegated to the Assistant Secretary— Indian Affairs by 209 DM 8. Dated: December 22, 2016. Lawrence S. Roberts, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary—Indian Affairs. [FR Doc. 2016–31724 Filed 12–29–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4337–15–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management [LLWO350000.16X.L11100000.PI0000 LXSISGMW0000] Notice of Amended Proposed Withdrawal, Release of Draft Environmental Impact Statement, and Notice of Public Meetings; Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Wyoming Bureau of Land Management, Interior. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: This notice announces the amendment of the September 24, 2015, application by the Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Land and Minerals Management to withdraw approximately 10 million acres of public and National Forest System lands from location and entry under the United States mining laws to protect the Greater Sage-Grouse and its habitat. The amendment adds 387,981.42 acres in the State of Nevada and refines the proposed withdrawal boundaries in Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Wyoming. In addition, this notice announces the release of the draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for public review, which analyzes and discloses the impacts of the proposed withdrawal. DATES: Comments must be received by March 28, 2017. Meetings will be held to provide the public with an opportunity to review and comment on the proposed withdrawal amendment and the draft EIS. Please see the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section for the locations, dates, and times of the scheduled public meetings. ADDRESSES: Written comments should be sent to Mark Mackiewicz, Bureau of Land Management (BLM) WO, C/O Price Field Office, 125 South 600 West, Price, UT 84501 or submitted electronically to sagebrush_ SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00046 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 withdrawals@blm.gov. Please see the section for an electronic link and office locations where specific legal descriptions and maps of the lands may be reviewed. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mark A. Mackiewicz, BLM, by telephone at 435–636–3616, or by email at mmackiew@blm.gov. Persons using a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Relay Service (FRS) at 800–877–8339. FRS is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to leave a message or question. You will receive a reply during normal business hours. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On September 24, 2015, a Notice of Proposed Withdrawal was published in the Federal Register (80 FR 57635), as corrected (80 FR 63583), which provided notice of the proposal to withdraw the identified lands from location and entry under the United States mining laws for 20 years, subject to valid existing rights. As a result of a request submitted by the State of Nevada, the BLM (applicant) petitioned the Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Land and Minerals Management to amend the original proposal through the addition of 387,981.42 acres of lands in that state. These lands represent a proposal by the State of Nevada to substitute for withdrawal 487,756 acres of high mineral development potential areas in Sagebrush Focal Areas (SFAs) for areas adjacent to SFAs that contain high value habitat and identified Greater Sage-Grouse populations. This petition also amends the original withdrawal proposal by adjusting the boundary of lands located in Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Wyoming as a result of legal land description refinements that defined the proposed withdrawal boundaries utilizing the public land survey system standards. The boundary adjustments resulted in a slight decrease in overall acres proposed for withdrawal, though refinements vary section-by-section. The Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Land and Minerals Management has approved the BLM’s petition. This action therefore, constitutes a withdrawal proposal of the Secretary of the Interior (43 CFR 2310.1–3(e)). Exhibit ‘‘A’’ of the application amendment describes the proposed additional public lands in Nevada being considered for withdrawal. Exhibit ‘‘B’’ describes all of the lands in both the original withdrawal application and the proposed withdrawal amendment under consideration by the BLM and the U.S. Forest Service (USFS). The withdrawal SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION E:\FR\FM\30DEN1.SGM 30DEN1 srobinson on DSK5SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 251 / Friday, December 30, 2016 / Notices amendment includes 387,981.42 acres in the State of Nevada and the boundary adjustment of lands located in Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Wyoming that were identified as a result of legal land description refinements. The written legal land descriptions and the maps depicting the proposed withdrawal for both Exhibit ‘‘A’’ and Exhibit ‘‘B’’ may be found on the BLM internet Web site link: https:// www.blm.gov/node/3282. The maps, legal land descriptions, and records relating to the amendment application may be examined at the following BLM State Offices or USFS Regional Offices or by contacting Mark Mackiewicz at 435–636–3616. Idaho State Office, 1387 S. Vinnell Way, Boise, ID 83709. Montana State Office, 5001 Southgate Drive, Billings, MT 59101–4669. Nevada State Office, 1340 Financial Boulevard, Reno, NV 89502. Oregon State Office, 1220 SW 3rd Avenue, Portland OR 97204. Utah State Office, 440 West 200 South, Suite 500, Salt Lake City, UT 84101. Wyoming State Office, 5353 Yellowstone Road, Cheyenne, Wyoming 82009. U.S. Forest Service, Region 1, 200 E Broadway St, Missoula, MT 59802. U.S. Forest Service, Region 4, Federal Building, 324 25th Street, Ogden, UT 84401. U.S. Forest Service, Region 6, 1220 SW 3rd Avenue, Portland OR 97204. The withdrawal proposal (including the amendment) will be processed in accordance with the regulations set forth in 43 CFR part 2300. The purpose of the proposed withdrawal is to protect the Greater Sage-Grouse and its habitat from adverse effects of locatable mineral exploration and mining. Publication of this notice segregates the lands described in the amended withdrawal application from location or entry under the United States mining laws, subject to valid existing rights, until September 24, 2017, unless the withdrawal application is denied or cancelled or the withdrawal is approved prior to that date. All of the lands (unless otherwise subject to an existing withdrawal) will remain open to the public land laws, leasing under the mineral and geothermal leasing laws, and disposal under the mineral material sales laws. Non-Federal mineral lands located within the boundaries of the proposed withdrawal areas will not be affected. Licenses, permits, cooperative agreements, or discretionary land use authorizations may be allowed during VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:18 Dec 29, 2016 Jkt 241001 the temporary segregative period, but only with the approval of the authorized officer of the BLM or the USFS. The use of a right-of-way, interagency or cooperative agreement, or surface management by the BLM under 43 CFR 3715 or 43 CFR 3809 regulations will not adequately constrain nondiscretionary uses, which could result in loss of critical Greater SageGrouse habitat. There are no suitable alternative sites for the withdrawal. No water rights would be needed to fulfill the purpose of the requested withdrawal. The proposed action analyzed in the draft EIS considers a withdrawal of approximately 10 million acres of Federal lands from location and entry under the United States mining laws for a maximum period of 20 years, subject to valid existing rights. The lands included in the proposed action are National System of Public Lands and National Forest System lands administered by the BLM and the USFS. Public scoping for this project began on September 24, 2015, and closed on January 15, 2016, with the publication in the Federal Register of the Notice of Proposed Withdrawal; Sagebrush Focal Areas; Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Wyoming and Notice of Intent to Prepare an EIS. During public scoping there were 5,078 unique letters submitted. The issues identified include, but are not limited to: • Development of Federal mineral resources is authorized by law on BLM and National Forest System Lands; restrictions or closures may decrease the ability to provide mineral resources; • The proposed action could affect the social and economic conditions within the analysis area, particularly in smaller communities; • The proposed action could reduce the potential for disturbance to vegetation communities and habitat alteration and fragmentation that otherwise might have occurred from mining activity; and • Mineral exploration and development has the potential to impact wildlife, including special status species and associated habitat within and adjacent to the proposed withdrawal area. An interdisciplinary approach was used to develop the draft EIS to consider a variety of resource issues and concerns. Based on internal and external scoping, the issues analyzed in detail in the draft EIS include: • Geology and mineral resources; • Vegetation, including special status plant species; PO 00000 Frm 00047 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 96479 • Wildlife and special status animal species, including Greater Sage-Grouse; and • Socioeconomic conditions, including environmental justice and human health and safety. In addition to the proposed action, the draft EIS analyzes and discloses the potential effects of the No Action alternative, State of Nevada alternative, High Mineral Potential alternative, and State of Idaho alternative. Under the No Action alternative, the proposed withdrawal area would remain open to location and entry under the United States mining laws. New mining claims could be located and the BLM and USFS would continue to oversee and regulate locatable mineral exploration and development in accordance with existing programs, polices, and regulations. Under the State of Nevada alternative, 487,756 acres of lands in Nevada, that are part of the proposed action would not be withdrawn and 387,981.42 acres of priority Greater Sage-Grouse habitat located contiguous to but outside the SFAs in the State would be included in the withdrawal. Nevada suggested that this alternative be considered to reduce the anticipated economic effect of the proposed withdrawal to the State of Nevada while still meeting the purpose and need for the proposed action. Under the High Mineral Potential alternative, all areas within the SFAs that contain lands with high mineral potential, as defined by the Sagebrush Mineral-Resource Assessment prepared by the U.S. Geological Survey, would not be withdrawn. Under this alternative, 558,918 acres of high mineral potential lands in the six states that are part of the proposed action would not be withdrawn. Under the State of Idaho alternative, 538,742 acres of economically developable lands in the State of Idaho that are part of the proposed action would be excluded from the proposed withdrawal and left open to location and entry under the United States mining laws. The State of Idaho identified these areas as economically developable. No additional lands are being proposed for inclusion in the withdrawal under this alternative. Thirty-one agencies and two American Indian Tribes have entered into Cooperating Agency agreements with the BLM for this EIS effort. Cooperating agencies have jurisdiction by law or special expertise with respect to resources potentially affected by the proposal (40 CFR 1508.5). Cooperating agencies participate in the preparation of the NEPA analysis and documentation. Cooperating agency E:\FR\FM\30DEN1.SGM 30DEN1 96480 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 251 / Friday, December 30, 2016 / Notices status does not imply the agency supports the proposed action. The BLM also contacted 53 American Indian governments via letter or face-toface meetings during scoping and prior to the release of the draft EIS. The governments were provided a project update, an offer to provide more information, and an offer for government-to-government consultation. In accordance with 36 CFR 800.3(a)(1), the BLM determined that the proposed SFA withdrawal is an undertaking that has no potential to affect historic properties, assuming such historic properties were present, and therefore the agency official has no further obligation under the National Historic Preservation Act. The BLM informed 53 American Indian governments; the Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Wyoming State Historic Preservation Offices; and the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation of this determination of effect. The draft EIS is available at the following libraries and offices online at: https://www.blm.gov/node/3282. • Idaho Falls Public Library, 457 W Broadway Street, Idaho Falls, ID 83402 IDAHO • BLM Nevada State Office, 1340 Financial Blvd., Reno NV 89502 • Elko District Office, 3900 Idaho St., Elko, NV 89801 • Winnemucca District Office, 5100 E. Winnemucca Blvd., Winnemucca, NV 89445 • BLM Battle Mountain District Office, 50 Bastian Road, Battle Mountain, NV 89820 BLM Offices • Boise District Office, 3948 Development Ave., Boise, ID 83705 • Owyhee Field Office, 20 First Avenue West, Marsing, ID 83639 • Idaho Falls District Office, 1405 Hollipark Dr., Idaho Falls, ID 83401 • Pocatello Field Office, 4350 South Cliffs Drive, Pocatello, ID 83204 • Twin Falls District Office, 2878 Addison Ave. E, Twin Falls, ID 83301 • Shoshone Field Office, 400 West ‘‘F’’ Street, Shoshone, ID 83352 • Salmon Field Office, 1206 South Challis Street, Salmon, ID 83467 • Burley Field Office, 15 East 200 South, Burley, ID 83318 • Challis Field Office, 1151 Blue Mountain Road, Challis, ID 83226 srobinson on DSK5SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES U.S. Forest Service Offices • Caribou-Targhee National Forest, 1405 Hollipark Drive, Idaho Falls, ID 83401 • Salmon-Challis National Forest, 1206 S. Challis Street, Salmon, ID 83467 • Sawtooth National Forest, 2647 Kimberly Road East, Twin Falls, ID 83301 Libraries • Mountain Home Public Library, 790 N 10th E Street, Mountain Home, ID 83647 • Boise Public Library, 715 S Capitol Boulevard, Boise, ID 83702 • Twin Falls Public Library, 201 Fourth Avenue East, Twin Falls, ID 83301 VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:18 Dec 29, 2016 Jkt 241001 U.S. Forest Service Offices MONTANA • Fremont-Winema National Forest, 1301 South G Street, Lakeview, OR 97630 BLM Offices Libraries • HiLine District Office, 1101 15th Street North, Great Falls, MT 59401 • Glasgow Field Office, 5 Lasar Drive, Glasgow, MT 59230 • Malta Field Office, 501 S. 2nd Street East, Malta, MT 59538 • Central Montana District Office, 920 Northeast Main, Lewistown, MT 59457 • Lewistown Field Office, 920 Northeast Main, Lewistown, MT 59457 • Harney County Library, 80 West D Street, Burns OR 97720 • Malheur County Library, 388 SW 2nd Avenue, Ontario, OR 97914 • Lake County Library, County Courthouse, Lakeview, OR 97630 Libraries • Lewistown Public Library, 701 West Main Street, Lewistown, MT 59457 • Phillips County Library, P.O. Box 840, Malta, MT 59538 • Glasgow City-County Library, 408 3rd Avenue South, Glasgow, MT 59230 BLM Offices U.S. Forest Service Offices • Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest, 1200 Franklin Way, Sparks, NV 89431 Libraries • Humboldt County Library, US Highway 95, McDermitt, NV 89421 • Humboldt County Library, 85 East 5th Street, Winnemucca, NV 89445 • Elko County Library, 720 Court Street, Elko, NV 89801 • Battle Mountain Branch Library, PO Box 141, NV 89820 • Jackpot Branch Library, 2301 Progressive Road, Jackpot, NV 89825 • Washoe County Library, PO Box 2151, Reno, NV 89801 OREGON BLM Offices • Burns District Office, 28910 Hwy 20 West, Hines, OR 97738 • Lakeview Field Office, 1301 South G. Street, Lakeview, OR 97630 • Vale District Office, 100 Oregon St, Vale, OR 97918 Frm 00048 BLM Offices • West Desert District Office, 2370 S. Decker Lake Blvd., West Valley City, UT 84119 • BLM Utah State Office, 440 West 200 South, Suite 500, Salt Lake City, Utah 84101 U.S. Forest Service Offices • Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest, 857 West South Jordan Parkway, South Jordan, UT 84095 Libraries NEVADA PO 00000 UTAH Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 • Box Elder County Bookmobile Library, 80 W 50 S, Willard, UT 84340–0595 • Cache County Library at Providence, 15 North Main, Providence, UT 84332 • Rich County Library and Bookmobile, 20 N Main, Randolph, UT 84064 • Salt Lake City Public Library, 210 E 400 S, Salt Lake City, UT 84111 WYOMING BLM Offices • High Desert District Office, 280 Highway 191 North, Rock Springs, WY 82901 • Kemmerer Field Office, 430 North Highway 189, Kemmerer, WY 83101 • Wind River/Bighorn Basin District Office, 101 South 23rd, Worland, WY 82401 • Lander Field Office, 1335 Main Street, Lander, WY 82520 • Pinedale Field Office, 1625 West Pine Street, Pinedale, WY 82941 Libraries • Fremont County Library, 244 Amoretti Street, Lander, WY 82520 • Rock Springs Library, 400 C Street, Rock Springs, WY 82901 • Lincoln County Library, 519 Emerald Street, Kemmerer, WY 83101 • Sublette County Library, 155 S Tyler Street, Pinedale, WY 82941 Specific comments or concerns about the proposed withdrawal will be most helpful to the BLM. Your comments should identify specific concerns with the potential environmental effects, reasonable alternatives, and measures to E:\FR\FM\30DEN1.SGM 30DEN1 srobinson on DSK5SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 251 / Friday, December 30, 2016 / Notices avoid or lessen the proposed withdrawal’s environmental impacts. The more specific your comments, the more useful they will be. To ensure consideration of your comments on the proposal in the final EIS, it is important that the BLM receive your comments before March 28, 2017. After the comments are reviewed, any significant new issues will be investigated, modifications will be made to the draft EIS, and a final EIS will be published and distributed. The final EIS will contain the agency’s responses to timely comments received on the draft EIS. In accordance with the requirements of 43 CFR 2310.3–1(b)(2)(iv) and 40 CFR 1506.6(b), for a period until March 28, 2017, all persons who wish to submit comments, suggestions, or objections in connection with the proposed withdrawal amendment as it relates to the lands in the six states and/or the draft EIS may present their views in writing to Mark Mackiewicz, BLM WO, C/O Price Field Office, 125 South 600 West, Price, Utah 84501, or by email to: sagebrush_withdrawals@blm.gov or by attending one of the public meetings on the dates and times as noted below. Notice is also hereby given that public meetings in connection with the proposed withdrawal and the release of the draft EIS will be held on the following dates, times, and locations: Monday, February 13, 2017, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.—Great Northern Hotel, 2 South 1st Street, Malta, MT 59538 Tuesday, February 14, 2017, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.—BLM West Desert District Office, 2370 S. Decker Lake Dr., West Valley City, UT 84119 Wednesday, February 15, 2017, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.—Rock Springs BLM Office, 280 Hwy 191 N, Rock Springs, WY 82901 Thursday, February 16, 2017, from 5p.m. to 7 p.m.—Shiloh Suites Conference Hotel, 780 Lindsay Blvd., Idaho Falls, ID 83402 Tuesday, February 21, 2017, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.—The Nugget, 1100 Nugget Avenue, Sparks, NV 89431 Wednesday, February 22, 2017, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.—Lakeview BLM District Office, 1301 South G Street, Lakeview, OR 97720 Thursday, February 23, 2017, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.—Elko Conference Center, 724 Moren Way, Elko, NV 89801 Friday, February 24, 2017, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.—Best Western Vista Inn, 2645 Airport Way, Boise, ID 83709 The public will have an opportunity to provide oral and written comments at the meetings. All comments received will be considered before any VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:18 Dec 29, 2016 Jkt 241001 recommendation concerning the proposed withdrawal is submitted to the Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Land and Minerals Management for final action. Comments including names and street addresses of respondents will be available for public review at the BLM Washington Office at the address noted above, during regular business hours, Monday through Friday, except Federal 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. 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. Jenna Whitlock, Acting Deputy Director, Operations, Bureau of Land Management. [FR Doc. 2016–31629 Filed 12–29–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–84–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management [LLOR936000.L14400000.ET0000 FUND. 17XL1109AF. WAOR068905 HAG17–0040] Notice of Application for Withdrawal and Opportunity for Public Meeting; Washington Bureau of Land Management, Interior. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: The United States Department of Agriculture, Forest Service (USFS) has filed an application with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) requesting that the Secretary of the Interior withdraw, for a period of 20 years, approximately 340,079 acres of National Forest System lands located in the Methow Valley, Okanagan National Forest. The purpose of the withdrawal is to protect the area while Congress considers legislation to permanently withdraw the lands, and to protect the value of ecological and recreational resources of the Methow Valley. Publication of this notice segregates the lands, subject to valid existing rights, for up to 2 years from settlement, sale, location, and entry under the public land laws, location and entry under the United States mining laws, and operation of the mineral and geothermal leasing laws. This notice also gives the public an opportunity to comment on the application for withdrawal. SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00049 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 96481 Comments must be received by March 30, 2017. The date(s) and location(s) of meetings related to the application for withdrawal will be announced at least 30 days in advance of the meetings through local media, newspapers and the Federal Register. ADDRESSES: Comments should be sent to the BLM Oregon/Washington State Director, P.O. Box 2965, Portland, OR 97208–2965. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jacob Childers, BLM Oregon/ Washington State Office, P.O. Box 2965, Portland, OR 97208–2965 or by phone at 503–808–6225. Persons who use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Relay Service at 1–800–877–8339 to contact the above individual. The service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You will receive a reply during normal business hours. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The applicant is the USFS. The application requests the Secretary of the Interior withdraw for a period of 20 years, subject to valid existing rights, the following described National Forest System lands from settlement, sale, location, and entry under the public land laws, location and entry under the United States mining laws, and operation of the mineral and geothermal leasing laws to protect the value of ecological and recreational resources of the Methow Valley and to protect the area while legislation to permanently withdraw the lands is being considered. Recreation accounts for a substantial share of the Methow Valley community’s economy while the watershed provides habitat for several threatened and endangered species. Legislation is currently pending in the 114th Congress as S.2991 and identified as the ‘‘Methow Headwaters Protection Act of 2016.’’ DATES: Okanogan National Forest Willamette Meridian T. 34 N., R. 20 E., Sec. 10, except that portion within the Lake Chelan-Sawtooth Wilderness and south of the ridge dividing Little Bridge Creek and Wolf Creek; Sec. 11; Secs. 14 and 15, those portions lying northerly of the ridge dividing Little Bridge Creek and Wolf Creek; Tract 37; Protraction block 37; Protraction blocks 38 and 39, except those portions lying within the Lake ChelanSawtooth Wilderness; Protraction block 43, that portion lying westerly of the ridge beginning in the SW1⁄4 and termination in the NE1⁄4 dividing Wolf Creek and Rader Creek; E:\FR\FM\30DEN1.SGM 30DEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 251 (Friday, December 30, 2016)]
[Notices]
[Pages 96478-96481]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-31629]


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

DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Bureau of Land Management

[LLWO350000.16X.L11100000.PI0000 LXSISGMW0000]


Notice of Amended Proposed Withdrawal, Release of Draft 
Environmental Impact Statement, and Notice of Public Meetings; Idaho, 
Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Wyoming

AGENCY: Bureau of Land Management, Interior.

ACTION: Notice.

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

SUMMARY: This notice announces the amendment of the September 24, 2015, 
application by the Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Land and 
Minerals Management to withdraw approximately 10 million acres of 
public and National Forest System lands from location and entry under 
the United States mining laws to protect the Greater Sage-Grouse and 
its habitat. The amendment adds 387,981.42 acres in the State of Nevada 
and refines the proposed withdrawal boundaries in Idaho, Montana, 
Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Wyoming. In addition, this notice announces 
the release of the draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for 
public review, which analyzes and discloses the impacts of the proposed 
withdrawal.

DATES: Comments must be received by March 28, 2017. Meetings will be 
held to provide the public with an opportunity to review and comment on 
the proposed withdrawal amendment and the draft EIS. Please see the 
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section for the locations, dates, and times 
of the scheduled public meetings.

ADDRESSES: Written comments should be sent to Mark Mackiewicz, Bureau 
of Land Management (BLM) WO, C/O Price Field Office, 125 South 600 
West, Price, UT 84501 or submitted electronically to 
sagebrush_withdrawals@blm.gov. Please see the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION 
section for an electronic link and office locations where specific 
legal descriptions and maps of the lands may be reviewed.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mark A. Mackiewicz, BLM, by telephone 
at 435-636-3616, or by email at mmackiew@blm.gov. Persons using a 
telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Relay 
Service (FRS) at 800-877-8339. FRS is available 24 hours a day, 7 days 
a week, to leave a message or question. You will receive a reply during 
normal business hours.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On September 24, 2015, a Notice of Proposed 
Withdrawal was published in the Federal Register (80 FR 57635), as 
corrected (80 FR 63583), which provided notice of the proposal to 
withdraw the identified lands from location and entry under the United 
States mining laws for 20 years, subject to valid existing rights. As a 
result of a request submitted by the State of Nevada, the BLM 
(applicant) petitioned the Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Land 
and Minerals Management to amend the original proposal through the 
addition of 387,981.42 acres of lands in that state. These lands 
represent a proposal by the State of Nevada to substitute for 
withdrawal 487,756 acres of high mineral development potential areas in 
Sagebrush Focal Areas (SFAs) for areas adjacent to SFAs that contain 
high value habitat and identified Greater Sage-Grouse populations. This 
petition also amends the original withdrawal proposal by adjusting the 
boundary of lands located in Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and 
Wyoming as a result of legal land description refinements that defined 
the proposed withdrawal boundaries utilizing the public land survey 
system standards. The boundary adjustments resulted in a slight 
decrease in overall acres proposed for withdrawal, though refinements 
vary section-by-section.
    The Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Land and Minerals 
Management has approved the BLM's petition. This action therefore, 
constitutes a withdrawal proposal of the Secretary of the Interior (43 
CFR 2310.1-3(e)).
    Exhibit ``A'' of the application amendment describes the proposed 
additional public lands in Nevada being considered for withdrawal.
    Exhibit ``B'' describes all of the lands in both the original 
withdrawal application and the proposed withdrawal amendment under 
consideration by the BLM and the U.S. Forest Service (USFS). The 
withdrawal

[[Page 96479]]

amendment includes 387,981.42 acres in the State of Nevada and the 
boundary adjustment of lands located in Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, 
Utah, and Wyoming that were identified as a result of legal land 
description refinements.
    The written legal land descriptions and the maps depicting the 
proposed withdrawal for both Exhibit ``A'' and Exhibit ``B'' may be 
found on the BLM internet Web site link: https://www.blm.gov/node/3282.
    The maps, legal land descriptions, and records relating to the 
amendment application may be examined at the following BLM State 
Offices or USFS Regional Offices or by contacting Mark Mackiewicz at 
435-636-3616.
    Idaho State Office, 1387 S. Vinnell Way, Boise, ID 83709.
    Montana State Office, 5001 Southgate Drive, Billings, MT 59101-
4669.
    Nevada State Office, 1340 Financial Boulevard, Reno, NV 89502.
    Oregon State Office, 1220 SW 3rd Avenue, Portland OR 97204.
    Utah State Office, 440 West 200 South, Suite 500, Salt Lake City, 
UT 84101.
    Wyoming State Office, 5353 Yellowstone Road, Cheyenne, Wyoming 
82009.
    U.S. Forest Service, Region 1, 200 E Broadway St, Missoula, MT 
59802.
    U.S. Forest Service, Region 4, Federal Building, 324 25th Street, 
Ogden, UT 84401.
    U.S. Forest Service, Region 6, 1220 SW 3rd Avenue, Portland OR 
97204.
    The withdrawal proposal (including the amendment) will be processed 
in accordance with the regulations set forth in 43 CFR part 2300.
    The purpose of the proposed withdrawal is to protect the Greater 
Sage-Grouse and its habitat from adverse effects of locatable mineral 
exploration and mining.
    Publication of this notice segregates the lands described in the 
amended withdrawal application from location or entry under the United 
States mining laws, subject to valid existing rights, until September 
24, 2017, unless the withdrawal application is denied or cancelled or 
the withdrawal is approved prior to that date. All of the lands (unless 
otherwise subject to an existing withdrawal) will remain open to the 
public land laws, leasing under the mineral and geothermal leasing 
laws, and disposal under the mineral material sales laws.
    Non-Federal mineral lands located within the boundaries of the 
proposed withdrawal areas will not be affected.
    Licenses, permits, cooperative agreements, or discretionary land 
use authorizations may be allowed during the temporary segregative 
period, but only with the approval of the authorized officer of the BLM 
or the USFS.
    The use of a right-of-way, interagency or cooperative agreement, or 
surface management by the BLM under 43 CFR 3715 or 43 CFR 3809 
regulations will not adequately constrain nondiscretionary uses, which 
could result in loss of critical Greater Sage-Grouse habitat.
    There are no suitable alternative sites for the withdrawal.
    No water rights would be needed to fulfill the purpose of the 
requested withdrawal.
    The proposed action analyzed in the draft EIS considers a 
withdrawal of approximately 10 million acres of Federal lands from 
location and entry under the United States mining laws for a maximum 
period of 20 years, subject to valid existing rights. The lands 
included in the proposed action are National System of Public Lands and 
National Forest System lands administered by the BLM and the USFS. 
Public scoping for this project began on September 24, 2015, and closed 
on January 15, 2016, with the publication in the Federal Register of 
the Notice of Proposed Withdrawal; Sagebrush Focal Areas; Idaho, 
Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Wyoming and Notice of Intent to 
Prepare an EIS. During public scoping there were 5,078 unique letters 
submitted. The issues identified include, but are not limited to:
     Development of Federal mineral resources is authorized by 
law on BLM and National Forest System Lands; restrictions or closures 
may decrease the ability to provide mineral resources;
     The proposed action could affect the social and economic 
conditions within the analysis area, particularly in smaller 
communities;
     The proposed action could reduce the potential for 
disturbance to vegetation communities and habitat alteration and 
fragmentation that otherwise might have occurred from mining activity; 
and
     Mineral exploration and development has the potential to 
impact wildlife, including special status species and associated 
habitat within and adjacent to the proposed withdrawal area.
    An interdisciplinary approach was used to develop the draft EIS to 
consider a variety of resource issues and concerns. Based on internal 
and external scoping, the issues analyzed in detail in the draft EIS 
include:
     Geology and mineral resources;
     Vegetation, including special status plant species;
     Wildlife and special status animal species, including 
Greater Sage-Grouse; and
     Socioeconomic conditions, including environmental justice 
and human health and safety.
    In addition to the proposed action, the draft EIS analyzes and 
discloses the potential effects of the No Action alternative, State of 
Nevada alternative, High Mineral Potential alternative, and State of 
Idaho alternative.
    Under the No Action alternative, the proposed withdrawal area would 
remain open to location and entry under the United States mining laws. 
New mining claims could be located and the BLM and USFS would continue 
to oversee and regulate locatable mineral exploration and development 
in accordance with existing programs, polices, and regulations.
    Under the State of Nevada alternative, 487,756 acres of lands in 
Nevada, that are part of the proposed action would not be withdrawn and 
387,981.42 acres of priority Greater Sage-Grouse habitat located 
contiguous to but outside the SFAs in the State would be included in 
the withdrawal. Nevada suggested that this alternative be considered to 
reduce the anticipated economic effect of the proposed withdrawal to 
the State of Nevada while still meeting the purpose and need for the 
proposed action.
    Under the High Mineral Potential alternative, all areas within the 
SFAs that contain lands with high mineral potential, as defined by the 
Sagebrush Mineral-Resource Assessment prepared by the U.S. Geological 
Survey, would not be withdrawn. Under this alternative, 558,918 acres 
of high mineral potential lands in the six states that are part of the 
proposed action would not be withdrawn.
    Under the State of Idaho alternative, 538,742 acres of economically 
developable lands in the State of Idaho that are part of the proposed 
action would be excluded from the proposed withdrawal and left open to 
location and entry under the United States mining laws. The State of 
Idaho identified these areas as economically developable. No additional 
lands are being proposed for inclusion in the withdrawal under this 
alternative.
    Thirty-one agencies and two American Indian Tribes have entered 
into Cooperating Agency agreements with the BLM for this EIS effort. 
Cooperating agencies have jurisdiction by law or special expertise with 
respect to resources potentially affected by the proposal (40 CFR 
1508.5). Cooperating agencies participate in the preparation of the 
NEPA analysis and documentation. Cooperating agency

[[Page 96480]]

status does not imply the agency supports the proposed action.
    The BLM also contacted 53 American Indian governments via letter or 
face-to-face meetings during scoping and prior to the release of the 
draft EIS. The governments were provided a project update, an offer to 
provide more information, and an offer for government-to-government 
consultation.
    In accordance with 36 CFR 800.3(a)(1), the BLM determined that the 
proposed SFA withdrawal is an undertaking that has no potential to 
affect historic properties, assuming such historic properties were 
present, and therefore the agency official has no further obligation 
under the National Historic Preservation Act. The BLM informed 53 
American Indian governments; the Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, 
and Wyoming State Historic Preservation Offices; and the Advisory 
Council on Historic Preservation of this determination of effect.
    The draft EIS is available at the following libraries and offices 
online at: https://www.blm.gov/node/3282.

IDAHO

BLM Offices

 Boise District Office, 3948 Development Ave., Boise, ID 83705
 Owyhee Field Office, 20 First Avenue West, Marsing, ID 83639
 Idaho Falls District Office, 1405 Hollipark Dr., Idaho Falls, 
ID 83401
 Pocatello Field Office, 4350 South Cliffs Drive, Pocatello, ID 
83204
 Twin Falls District Office, 2878 Addison Ave. E, Twin Falls, 
ID 83301
 Shoshone Field Office, 400 West ``F'' Street, Shoshone, ID 
83352
 Salmon Field Office, 1206 South Challis Street, Salmon, ID 
83467
 Burley Field Office, 15 East 200 South, Burley, ID 83318
 Challis Field Office, 1151 Blue Mountain Road, Challis, ID 
83226

U.S. Forest Service Offices

 Caribou-Targhee National Forest, 1405 Hollipark Drive, Idaho 
Falls, ID 83401
 Salmon-Challis National Forest, 1206 S. Challis Street, 
Salmon, ID 83467
 Sawtooth National Forest, 2647 Kimberly Road East, Twin Falls, 
ID 83301

Libraries

 Mountain Home Public Library, 790 N 10th E Street, Mountain 
Home, ID 83647
 Boise Public Library, 715 S Capitol Boulevard, Boise, ID 83702
 Twin Falls Public Library, 201 Fourth Avenue East, Twin Falls, 
ID 83301
 Idaho Falls Public Library, 457 W Broadway Street, Idaho 
Falls, ID 83402

MONTANA

BLM Offices

 HiLine District Office, 1101 15th Street North, Great Falls, 
MT 59401
 Glasgow Field Office, 5 Lasar Drive, Glasgow, MT 59230
 Malta Field Office, 501 S. 2nd Street East, Malta, MT 59538
 Central Montana District Office, 920 Northeast Main, 
Lewistown, MT 59457
 Lewistown Field Office, 920 Northeast Main, Lewistown, MT 
59457

Libraries

 Lewistown Public Library, 701 West Main Street, Lewistown, MT 
59457
 Phillips County Library, P.O. Box 840, Malta, MT 59538
 Glasgow City-County Library, 408 3rd Avenue South, Glasgow, MT 
59230

NEVADA

BLM Offices

 BLM Nevada State Office, 1340 Financial Blvd., Reno NV 89502
 Elko District Office, 3900 Idaho St., Elko, NV 89801
 Winnemucca District Office, 5100 E. Winnemucca Blvd., 
Winnemucca, NV 89445
 BLM Battle Mountain District Office, 50 Bastian Road, Battle 
Mountain, NV 89820

U.S. Forest Service Offices

 Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest, 1200 Franklin Way, Sparks, 
NV 89431

Libraries

 Humboldt County Library, US Highway 95, McDermitt, NV 89421
 Humboldt County Library, 85 East 5th Street, Winnemucca, NV 
89445
 Elko County Library, 720 Court Street, Elko, NV 89801
 Battle Mountain Branch Library, PO Box 141, NV 89820
 Jackpot Branch Library, 2301 Progressive Road, Jackpot, NV 
89825
 Washoe County Library, PO Box 2151, Reno, NV 89801

OREGON

BLM Offices

 Burns District Office, 28910 Hwy 20 West, Hines, OR 97738
 Lakeview Field Office, 1301 South G. Street, Lakeview, OR 
97630
 Vale District Office, 100 Oregon St, Vale, OR 97918

U.S. Forest Service Offices

 Fremont-Winema National Forest, 1301 South G Street, Lakeview, 
OR 97630

Libraries

 Harney County Library, 80 West D Street, Burns OR 97720
 Malheur County Library, 388 SW 2nd Avenue, Ontario, OR 97914
 Lake County Library, County Courthouse, Lakeview, OR 97630

UTAH

BLM Offices

 West Desert District Office, 2370 S. Decker Lake Blvd., West 
Valley City, UT 84119
 BLM Utah State Office, 440 West 200 South, Suite 500, Salt 
Lake City, Utah 84101

U.S. Forest Service Offices

 Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest, 857 West South Jordan 
Parkway, South Jordan, UT 84095

Libraries

 Box Elder County Bookmobile Library, 80 W 50 S, Willard, UT 
84340-0595
 Cache County Library at Providence, 15 North Main, Providence, 
UT 84332
 Rich County Library and Bookmobile, 20 N Main, Randolph, UT 
84064
 Salt Lake City Public Library, 210 E 400 S, Salt Lake City, UT 
84111

WYOMING

BLM Offices

 High Desert District Office, 280 Highway 191 North, Rock 
Springs, WY 82901
 Kemmerer Field Office, 430 North Highway 189, Kemmerer, WY 
83101
 Wind River/Bighorn Basin District Office, 101 South 23rd, 
Worland, WY 82401
 Lander Field Office, 1335 Main Street, Lander, WY 82520
 Pinedale Field Office, 1625 West Pine Street, Pinedale, WY 
82941

Libraries

 Fremont County Library, 244 Amoretti Street, Lander, WY 82520
 Rock Springs Library, 400 C Street, Rock Springs, WY 82901
 Lincoln County Library, 519 Emerald Street, Kemmerer, WY 83101
 Sublette County Library, 155 S Tyler Street, Pinedale, WY 
82941

    Specific comments or concerns about the proposed withdrawal will be 
most helpful to the BLM. Your comments should identify specific 
concerns with the potential environmental effects, reasonable 
alternatives, and measures to

[[Page 96481]]

avoid or lessen the proposed withdrawal's environmental impacts. The 
more specific your comments, the more useful they will be. To ensure 
consideration of your comments on the proposal in the final EIS, it is 
important that the BLM receive your comments before March 28, 2017.
    After the comments are reviewed, any significant new issues will be 
investigated, modifications will be made to the draft EIS, and a final 
EIS will be published and distributed. The final EIS will contain the 
agency's responses to timely comments received on the draft EIS.
    In accordance with the requirements of 43 CFR 2310.3-1(b)(2)(iv) 
and 40 CFR 1506.6(b), for a period until March 28, 2017, all persons 
who wish to submit comments, suggestions, or objections in connection 
with the proposed withdrawal amendment as it relates to the lands in 
the six states and/or the draft EIS may present their views in writing 
to Mark Mackiewicz, BLM WO, C/O Price Field Office, 125 South 600 West, 
Price, Utah 84501, or by email to: sagebrush_withdrawals@blm.gov or by 
attending one of the public meetings on the dates and times as noted 
below.
    Notice is also hereby given that public meetings in connection with 
the proposed withdrawal and the release of the draft EIS will be held 
on the following dates, times, and locations:
Monday, February 13, 2017, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.--Great Northern Hotel, 
2 South 1st Street, Malta, MT 59538
Tuesday, February 14, 2017, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.--BLM West Desert 
District Office, 2370 S. Decker Lake Dr., West Valley City, UT 84119
Wednesday, February 15, 2017, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.--Rock Springs BLM 
Office, 280 Hwy 191 N, Rock Springs, WY 82901
Thursday, February 16, 2017, from 5p.m. to 7 p.m.--Shiloh Suites 
Conference Hotel, 780 Lindsay Blvd., Idaho Falls, ID 83402
Tuesday, February 21, 2017, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.--The Nugget, 1100 
Nugget Avenue, Sparks, NV 89431
Wednesday, February 22, 2017, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.--Lakeview BLM 
District Office, 1301 South G Street, Lakeview, OR 97720
Thursday, February 23, 2017, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.--Elko Conference 
Center, 724 Moren Way, Elko, NV 89801
Friday, February 24, 2017, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.--Best Western Vista 
Inn, 2645 Airport Way, Boise, ID 83709
    The public will have an opportunity to provide oral and written 
comments at the meetings. All comments received will be considered 
before any recommendation concerning the proposed withdrawal is 
submitted to the Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Land and 
Minerals Management for final action.
    Comments including names and street addresses of respondents will 
be available for public review at the BLM Washington Office at the 
address noted above, during regular business hours, Monday through 
Friday, except Federal 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. 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.

Jenna Whitlock,
Acting Deputy Director, Operations, Bureau of Land Management.
[FR Doc. 2016-31629 Filed 12-29-16; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4310-84-P