Notice of Availability of Record of Decision and Approved Resource Management Plan Amendment for Greater Sage-Grouse Conservation, Idaho, 10325-10326 [2019-05289]

Download as PDF jbell on DSK30RV082PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 54 / Wednesday, March 20, 2019 / Notices Environmental Coordinator, at 503– 808–6062; 1220 SW 3rd Ave. Suite 1305, Portland, OR 97204; jreganvienop@blm.gov. Persons who use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Relay Service (FRS) at 1–800–877–8339. The FRS is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to leave a message or question with Mr. Regan-Vienop. You will receive a reply during normal business hours. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The BLM developed the Oregon Greater SageGrouse Approved RMP Amendment to enhance cooperation with states by improving alignment with state management plans and strategies for Greater Sage-Grouse, while continuing to conserve, enhance, and restore Greater Sage-Grouse and its habitat. The BLM developed the Oregon Greater Sage-Grouse Approved RMP Amendment in collaboration with Oregon Governor Kate Brown, State wildlife managers, and other concerned organizations and individuals largely through the Western Governors Association’s Sage-Grouse Task Force. Using its discretion and authority under the Federal Land Policy and Management Act, the BLM amends land use plans that address Greater SageGrouse management to further improve alignment with the State of Oregon plans and management strategies in accordance with the BLM’s multiple use and sustained yield mission. The Oregon Greater Sage-Grouse Approved RMP Amendment is one of six separate plan amendments developed and issued in response to Secretarial Order (SO) 3353 (Greater Sage-Grouse Conservation and Cooperation with Western States) and in accordance with SO 3349 (American Energy Independence). The six amendments refine the previous management plans adopted in 2015 and aim to strike a regulatory balance and build greater trust among neighboring interests in Western communities. The Oregon Greater Sage-Grouse Approved RMP Amendment specifically addresses the availability or unavailability of livestock grazing in 13 key Research Natural Areas and clarifies plan provisions related to compensatory mitigation. The Oregon Greater SageGrouse Approved RMP Amendment amends the following RMPs for lands administered by the BLM in Oregon: • Andrews (2005) • Baker (1989) • Brothers/La Pine (1989) • Lakeview (2003) • Southeastern Oregon (2002) • Steens (2005) • Three Rivers (1992) VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:27 Mar 19, 2019 Jkt 247001 • Upper Deschutes (2005) The planning area includes approximately 60,649 acres of lands administered by the BLM in three Oregon counties: Harney, Lake, and Malheur. Within the decision area, the BLM administers approximately 21,959 acres of public lands, all of which is Greater Sage-Grouse habitat. Surface management decisions made in the Oregon Greater Sage-Grouse Approved RMP Amendment apply only to lands administered by the BLM in the decision area. The BLM prepared an environmental impact statement (EIS) in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) to analyze the direct, indirect, and cumulative environmental impacts associated with the proposed action and the alternatives. The ROD approves the agency preferred alternative identified in the Final EIS. The BLM issued the ROD based on compliance with relevant laws, regulations, policies, and plans, including those guiding agency decisions that may have an impact on resources and their values, services, and functions. On December 10, 2018, the Notice of Availability (NOA) for the Oregon Greater Sage-Grouse Proposed RMP Amendment/Final EIS (83 FR 63524) was published in the Federal Register. The publication of the NOA initiated a 30-day protest period for the proposed land use planning decision. The protest period was later extended an additional seven days to help account for technical issues the public encountered when submitting protests during the partial Federal Government shutdown in January 2019. The NOA publication also initiated a simultaneous 60-day review by the Governor of Oregon to identify any inconsistencies with State or local plans, policies, or programs. At the close of the protest period, 12 protests had been received. These protests were resolved by the BLM Director; individual protest response letters were sent to all protesting parties. Protest resolution is contained in the Director’s Protest Summary Report, which is available online at https://www.blm.gov/ programs/planning-and-nepa/publicparticipation/protest-resolution-reports. The Oregon Greater Sage-Grouse Proposed RMP Amendment was not modified as a result of the protest resolution. The Oregon Governor’s consistency review identified the following inconsistency: Language in the Proposed RMPA/Final EIS related to compensatory mitigation failed to fully acknowledge the State of Oregon’s jurisdiction, authorities, and abilities to PO 00000 Frm 00036 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 10325 require compensatory mitigation for impacts to Greater Sage-Grouse. The BLM clarified in the ROD for the Oregon Greater Sage-Grouse Proposed RMP Amendment that, when the State of Oregon requires compensatory mitigation as a component of compliance with the State’s mitigation program, policy, or state regulation, the BLM will incorporate and enforce that compensatory mitigation as a condition of permits or authorizations issued by BLM Oregon. Authority: 40 CFR 1506.6. Theresa M. Hanley, Acting State Director, BLM Oregon/ Washington. [FR Doc. 2019–05297 Filed 3–19–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–84–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management [19X LLWO230 L11100000.PN0000 LXSGPL000000] Notice of Availability of Record of Decision and Approved Resource Management Plan Amendment for Greater Sage-Grouse Conservation, Idaho Bureau of Land Management, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability. AGENCY: The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announces the availability of the Record of Decision (ROD) for the Approved Resource Management Plan (RMP) Amendment for Greater Sage-Grouse Conservation for the Idaho Greater Sage-Grouse SubRegion. The State Director signed the ROD on March 15, 2019, which constitutes the final decision of the BLM and makes the Approved ROD effective immediately. ADDRESSES: The ROD is available on the BLM ePlanning project website at https://go.usa.gov/xPc3a. Click the Documents and Reports link on the left side of the screen to find the electronic version of these materials. Hard copies of the ROD are also available for public inspection at the Boise, Idaho Falls, and Twin Falls District Offices. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jonathan Beck, Greater Sage-Grouse Implementation Coordinator, telephone, (208) 373–3841; address, 1387 South Vinnell Way, Boise Idaho 83709; email, jmbeck@blm.gov. Persons who use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Relay Service (FRS) at (800) 877–8339 to contact Mr. Beck. The FRS is available SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\20MRN1.SGM 20MRN1 jbell on DSK30RV082PROD with NOTICES 10326 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 54 / Wednesday, March 20, 2019 / Notices 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to leave a message or question with Mr. Beck. You will receive a reply during normal business hours. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The BLM developed the Idaho Greater SageGrouse Approved RMP Amendment to enhance cooperation with States by improving alignment with State management plans and strategies for Greater Sage-Grouse, while continuing to conserve, enhance, and restore Greater Sage-Grouse and its habitat. The Approved RMP Amendment also addresses a legal vulnerability, which was exposed when a Federal District Court in Nevada determined that the BLM had violated the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) when it finalized the 2015 plans. The BLM developed the Approved RMP Amendment in collaboration with Idaho Governor Butch Otter, state wildlife managers, and other concerned organizations and individuals, largely through the Governor’s stakeholder group comprised of members from the Idaho Sage-Grouse Task Force. Using its discretion and authority under the Federal Land Policy and Management Act (FLPMA), the BLM amends land use plans that address Greater Sage-Grouse management to improve alignment with State of Idaho plans and management strategies, in accordance with the BLM’s multiple use and sustained yield mission. This Approved RMP Amendment is one of six separate plan amendments developed and issued in response to the Secretary’s Order (SO) 3353 (Greater Sage-grouse Conservation and Cooperation with Western States) and in accordance with SO 3349 (American Energy Independence). The amendments refine the previous management plan adopted in 2015 and aim to strike a regulatory balance and build greater trust among neighboring interests in Western communities. The Idaho Greater-Sage Grouse Approved RMP Amendment specifically addresses the designation of sagebrush focal areas, mitigation standards, lek buffers, disturbance and density caps, and adjustments to habitat boundaries to reflect new information. The Approved RMP Amendment amends the following RMPs for BLM-administered lands in Idaho: • Bennett Hills/Timmerman Hills Management Framework Plan (MFP) (BLM 1980) • Big Desert MFP (BLM 1981) • Big Lost MFP (BLM 1983) • Bruneau MFP (BLM 1983) • Cascade RMP (BLM 1988) • Cassia RMP (BLM 1985) • Challis RMP (BLM 1999) VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:27 Mar 19, 2019 Jkt 247001 • Craters of the Moon National Monument RMP (BLM 2006) • Jarbidge RMP (BLM 1988) • Jarbidge RMP (Revised) (BLM 2015) • Kuna MFP (BLM 1983) • Lemhi RMP (BLM 1987) • Little Lost-Birch Creek MFP (BLM 1981) • Magic MFP (BLM 1975) • Medicine Lodge MFP (BLM 1981) • Monument RMP (BLM 1985) • Owyhee RMP (BLM 1999) • Pocatello RMP (BLM 2012) • Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area RMP (BLM 2008) • Sun Valley MFP (BLM 1981) • Twin Falls MFP (BLM 1982) The planning area includes approximately 39.5 million acres of BLM, National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, State, local, and private lands in 28 counties: Ada, Adams, Bear Lake, Bingham, Blaine, Bonneville, Butte, Camas, Caribou, Cassia, Clark, Custer, Elmore, Fremont, Gem, Gooding, Jefferson, Jerome, Lemhi, Lincoln, Madison, Minidoka, Oneida, Owyhee, Payette, Power, Twin Falls, and Washington. Within the planning area, the BLM administers 11,470,301 acres of public land, providing 8,809,326 acres of Greater Sage-Grouse habitat. Surface management decisions made in the Approved RMP Amendment apply only to lands administered by the BLM in the decision area. The BLM prepared an EIS in accordance with the NEPA to analyze the direct, indirect, and cumulative environmental impacts associated with the proposed action and the alternatives. The ROD approves the Agency Preferred Alternative identified in the Final EIS as updated by the Governor’s consistency review and accepted by the Idaho State Director. The BLM issued the ROD based on compliance with relevant laws, regulations, policies, and plans, including those guiding agency decisions that may have an impact on resources and their values, services, and functions. On December 10, 2018, the NOA for the Idaho Greater Sage-Grouse Proposed RMP Amendment/Final EIS (83 FR 63531) was published in the Federal Register. The publication of the NOA initiated a 30-day protest period for the proposed land-use-planning decision. The protest period was later extended an additional seven days to help account for technical issues the public encountered when submitting protests during the partial Federal government shutdown in January 2019. NOA publication also initiated a PO 00000 Frm 00037 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 9990 simultaneous 60-day review by the Governor of Idaho to identify and inconsistencies with State or local plans, policies, or programs. At the close of the protest period, 8 protests had been received. These protests were resolved by the BLM Director; individual protest response letters were sent to all protesting parties. Protest resolution is contained in the Director’s Protest Summary Report, which is available online at https://www.blm.gov/ programs/planning-and-nepa/publicparticipation/protest-resolution-reports. The proposed RMP Amendment was modified as a result of the protest resolution. The Idaho Governor’s review identified several factual corrections/ editorial changes that were accepted by BLM. The Governor also identified inconsistencies related to livestock grazing, buffers, required design features, and fire management. The BLM clarified Management Direction MD LG 17 in the Approved RMP Amendment to the following: ‘‘Allotments within PHMA with declining sage-grouse populations, defined by a soft or hard adaptive management trigger being engaged and/ or with land health concerns will be prioritized for field checks.’’ BLM removed redundant 2015 plan exception criteria from Appendix B. The intention was to remove the 2015 exception criteria when adding the stakeholder group’s exception criteria between Draft EIS and Final EIS, but the deletion was overlooked when completing the Final EIS. BLM moved the noise buffer section located in the 2018 Final EIS to Required Design Features (RDF) as it was in the 2015 Approved RMP Amendment. BLM will include the words ‘‘as appropriate’’ to the anti-perch device RDF to allow the use of current and/or best science when making perch deterrent decisions. Authority: 40 CFR 1506.6. Peter J. Ditton, Acting BLM Idaho State Director. [FR Doc. 2019–05289 Filed 3–19–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–84–P E:\FR\FM\20MRN1.SGM 20MRN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 54 (Wednesday, March 20, 2019)]
[Notices]
[Pages 10325-10326]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-05289]


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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Bureau of Land Management

[19X LLWO230 L11100000.PN0000 LXSGPL000000]


Notice of Availability of Record of Decision and Approved 
Resource Management Plan Amendment for Greater Sage-Grouse 
Conservation, Idaho

AGENCY: Bureau of Land Management, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability.

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

SUMMARY: The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announces the availability 
of the Record of Decision (ROD) for the Approved Resource Management 
Plan (RMP) Amendment for Greater Sage-Grouse Conservation for the Idaho 
Greater Sage-Grouse Sub-Region. The State Director signed the ROD on 
March 15, 2019, which constitutes the final decision of the BLM and 
makes the Approved ROD effective immediately.

ADDRESSES: The ROD is available on the BLM ePlanning project website at 
https://go.usa.gov/xPc3a. Click the Documents and Reports link on the 
left side of the screen to find the electronic version of these 
materials. Hard copies of the ROD are also available for public 
inspection at the Boise, Idaho Falls, and Twin Falls District Offices.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jonathan Beck, Greater Sage-Grouse 
Implementation Coordinator, telephone, (208) 373-3841; address, 1387 
South Vinnell Way, Boise Idaho 83709; email, jmbeck@blm.gov. Persons 
who use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the 
Federal Relay Service (FRS) at (800) 877-8339 to contact Mr. Beck. The 
FRS is available

[[Page 10326]]

24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to leave a message or question with Mr. 
Beck. You will receive a reply during normal business hours.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The BLM developed the Idaho Greater Sage-
Grouse Approved RMP Amendment to enhance cooperation with States by 
improving alignment with State management plans and strategies for 
Greater Sage-Grouse, while continuing to conserve, enhance, and restore 
Greater Sage-Grouse and its habitat. The Approved RMP Amendment also 
addresses a legal vulnerability, which was exposed when a Federal 
District Court in Nevada determined that the BLM had violated the 
National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) when it finalized the 2015 
plans.
    The BLM developed the Approved RMP Amendment in collaboration with 
Idaho Governor Butch Otter, state wildlife managers, and other 
concerned organizations and individuals, largely through the Governor's 
stakeholder group comprised of members from the Idaho Sage-Grouse Task 
Force. Using its discretion and authority under the Federal Land Policy 
and Management Act (FLPMA), the BLM amends land use plans that address 
Greater Sage-Grouse management to improve alignment with State of Idaho 
plans and management strategies, in accordance with the BLM's multiple 
use and sustained yield mission. This Approved RMP Amendment is one of 
six separate plan amendments developed and issued in response to the 
Secretary's Order (SO) 3353 (Greater Sage-grouse Conservation and 
Cooperation with Western States) and in accordance with SO 3349 
(American Energy Independence). The amendments refine the previous 
management plan adopted in 2015 and aim to strike a regulatory balance 
and build greater trust among neighboring interests in Western 
communities.
    The Idaho Greater-Sage Grouse Approved RMP Amendment specifically 
addresses the designation of sagebrush focal areas, mitigation 
standards, lek buffers, disturbance and density caps, and adjustments 
to habitat boundaries to reflect new information. The Approved RMP 
Amendment amends the following RMPs for BLM-administered lands in 
Idaho:

 Bennett Hills/Timmerman Hills Management Framework Plan (MFP) 
(BLM 1980)
 Big Desert MFP (BLM 1981)
 Big Lost MFP (BLM 1983)
 Bruneau MFP (BLM 1983)
 Cascade RMP (BLM 1988)
 Cassia RMP (BLM 1985)
 Challis RMP (BLM 1999)
 Craters of the Moon National Monument RMP (BLM 2006)
 Jarbidge RMP (BLM 1988)
 Jarbidge RMP (Revised) (BLM 2015)
 Kuna MFP (BLM 1983)
 Lemhi RMP (BLM 1987)
 Little Lost-Birch Creek MFP (BLM 1981)
 Magic MFP (BLM 1975)
 Medicine Lodge MFP (BLM 1981)
 Monument RMP (BLM 1985)
 Owyhee RMP (BLM 1999)
 Pocatello RMP (BLM 2012)
 Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area RMP (BLM 
2008)
 Sun Valley MFP (BLM 1981)
 Twin Falls MFP (BLM 1982)

    The planning area includes approximately 39.5 million acres of BLM, 
National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, 
State, local, and private lands in 28 counties: Ada, Adams, Bear Lake, 
Bingham, Blaine, Bonneville, Butte, Camas, Caribou, Cassia, Clark, 
Custer, Elmore, Fremont, Gem, Gooding, Jefferson, Jerome, Lemhi, 
Lincoln, Madison, Minidoka, Oneida, Owyhee, Payette, Power, Twin Falls, 
and Washington. Within the planning area, the BLM administers 
11,470,301 acres of public land, providing 8,809,326 acres of Greater 
Sage-Grouse habitat. Surface management decisions made in the Approved 
RMP Amendment apply only to lands administered by the BLM in the 
decision area.
    The BLM prepared an EIS in accordance with the NEPA to analyze the 
direct, indirect, and cumulative environmental impacts associated with 
the proposed action and the alternatives. The ROD approves the Agency 
Preferred Alternative identified in the Final EIS as updated by the 
Governor's consistency review and accepted by the Idaho State Director. 
The BLM issued the ROD based on compliance with relevant laws, 
regulations, policies, and plans, including those guiding agency 
decisions that may have an impact on resources and their values, 
services, and functions.
    On December 10, 2018, the NOA for the Idaho Greater Sage-Grouse 
Proposed RMP Amendment/Final EIS (83 FR 63531) was published in the 
Federal Register. The publication of the NOA initiated a 30-day protest 
period for the proposed land-use-planning decision. The protest period 
was later extended an additional seven days to help account for 
technical issues the public encountered when submitting protests during 
the partial Federal government shutdown in January 2019. NOA 
publication also initiated a simultaneous 60-day review by the Governor 
of Idaho to identify and inconsistencies with State or local plans, 
policies, or programs. At the close of the protest period, 8 protests 
had been received. These protests were resolved by the BLM Director; 
individual protest response letters were sent to all protesting 
parties. Protest resolution is contained in the Director's Protest 
Summary Report, which is available online at https://www.blm.gov/programs/planning-and-nepa/public-participation/protest-resolution-reports. The proposed RMP Amendment was modified as a result of the 
protest resolution. The Idaho Governor's review identified several 
factual corrections/editorial changes that were accepted by BLM. The 
Governor also identified inconsistencies related to livestock grazing, 
buffers, required design features, and fire management.
    The BLM clarified Management Direction MD LG 17 in the Approved RMP 
Amendment to the following: ``Allotments within PHMA with declining 
sage-grouse populations, defined by a soft or hard adaptive management 
trigger being engaged and/or with land health concerns will be 
prioritized for field checks.'' BLM removed redundant 2015 plan 
exception criteria from Appendix B. The intention was to remove the 
2015 exception criteria when adding the stakeholder group's exception 
criteria between Draft EIS and Final EIS, but the deletion was 
overlooked when completing the Final EIS. BLM moved the noise buffer 
section located in the 2018 Final EIS to Required Design Features (RDF) 
as it was in the 2015 Approved RMP Amendment. BLM will include the 
words ``as appropriate'' to the anti-perch device RDF to allow the use 
of current and/or best science when making perch deterrent decisions.

    Authority: 40 CFR 1506.6.

Peter J. Ditton,
Acting BLM Idaho State Director.
[FR Doc. 2019-05289 Filed 3-19-19; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4310-84-P