Byron Sand Mine Evo East Quarry Expansion, Contra Costa County, California; Draft Categorical Exclusion and Draft Habitat Conservation Plan
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the receipt of an application from G3 enterprises (applicant) for an incidental take permit (ITP) under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).The applicant requests an ITP to take the San Joaquin kit fox, the Central Valley distinct population segment of the California tiger salamander, the California red-legged frog, and the vernal pool fairy shrimp, incidental to the construction of the Byron Sand Mine Evo East Quarry Expansion Project in Contra Costa County, California. We request public comment on the application, which includes the applicant's proposed habitat conservation plan (HCP), and on the Service's preliminary determination that the proposed permitting action may be eligible for a categorical exclusion pursuant to the Council on Environmental Quality's National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) regulations, the Department of the Interior's (DOI) NEPA regulations, and the DOI Departmental Manual. To make this preliminary determination, we prepared a draft environmental action statement and low-effect screening form, both of which are also available for public review. We invite comment from the public and local, State, Tribal, and Federal agencies. Before issuing the requested permit, we will take into consideration any information that we receive during the public comment period.
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; California Spotted Owl; Endangered Status for the Coastal-Southern California Distinct Population Segment and Threatened Status With Section 4(d) Rule for the Sierra Nevada Distinct Population Segment
We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), propose to list two distinct population segments (DPSs) of the California spotted owl (Strix occidentalis occidentalis), a bird species from California and Nevada, under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). This determination also serves as our 12-month finding on a petition to list the California spotted owl. After a review of the best available scientific and commercial information, we find that listing the Coastal-Southern California DPS as endangered is warranted, and that listing the Sierra Nevada DPS as threatened is warranted. Accordingly, we propose to list the Coastal-Southern California DPS as an endangered species under the Act and the Sierra Nevada DPS as a threatened species with a rule issued under section 4(d) of the Act (``4(d) rule''). If we finalize this rule as proposed, it will add these two DPSs to the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and extend the Act's protections to them.