[Federal Register: June 5, 2007 (Volume 72, Number 107)]
[Page 31091-31093]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Bureau of Land Management


Notice of Availability of Supplemental Information on Proposed 
Areas of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC) and Associated Resource 
Use Limitations for Public Lands for the Draft Rawlins Resource 
Management Plan/Environmental Impact Statement (Draft RMP/EIS), 
Laramie, Albany, Carbon, and Eastern Sweetwater Counties, WY

AGENCY: Bureau of Land Management, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability.


SUMMARY: On December 17, 2004, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) 
published a Notice of Availability (Vol. 69, No. 242) of the Draft 
Rawlins Resource Management Plan/Environmental Impact Statement for 
public review and comment in the Federal Register. BLM planning 
regulations at 43 CFR 1610.7-2 require the BLM to notify the public of 
proposed ACECs in a Federal Register Notice. The proposed ACECs and 
resource use limitations that are identified in the Draft RMP/EIS were 
not specifically identified in the original notice. This notice 
fulfills the regulatory requirements. (Supplemental information can be 
found in the original Notice of Availability (NOA) published in the 
Federal Register.)

DATES: Consistent with 43 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 1610.7-2, a 
60-day public review of the ACEC information and comment submittal 
period will start on the date that this notice appears in the Federal 

ADDRESSES: Comments must be received by or before the end of the 60-day 
comment period and written comments must be submitted as follows:
    1. Comments may be provided via the Rawlins RMP Revision Web site 
at: http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/leaving.cgi?from=leavingFR.html&log=linklog&to=http://www.blm.gov/rmp/wy/rawlins/; the Web site is designed to 

allow commenters to submit comments electronically by resource subject 
directly onto a comment form posted on the Web site. Comments may be 
uploaded in an electronic file directly to the above Web site.

[[Page 31092]]

    2. Written comments may be mailed or delivered to the BLM at: 
Rawlins RMP/EIS, Bureau of Land Management Rawlins Field Office, 1300 
North Third Street, P.O. Box 2407, Rawlins, Wyoming 82301.
    3. Comments may be sent by facsimile to (307) 328-4224.
    The BLM will only accept comments if they are submitted in the 
methods described above. To be given consideration by the BLM, comment 
submittals must include the commenter's name and street address. 
Whenever possible, please include reference to either the page or 
section in the Draft RMP/EIS to which the ACEC related comment applies. 
To facilitate analysis of comments and information submitted, BLM 
encourages commenters to submit comments in an electronic format 
through the Web site.
    Before including your address, phone number, e-mail address, or 
other personal identifying information in your comment, be advised 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 from public review your personal identifying 
information, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. All 
submissions from organizations or businesses, will be available for 
public inspection in their entirety.
    Copies of the Draft RMP/EIS were sent to affected Federal, State, 
and local government agencies and interested parties when the document 
first became available. Additional copies have been supplied to 
interested parties on request. There are a limited number of hard 
copies available upon request. The document was posted electronically, 
and is still available for public review on the following Web site: 
http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/leaving.cgi?from=leavingFR.html&log=linklog&to=http://www.blm.gov/rmp/wy/rawlins/. Copies of Draft RMP/EIS are also 

available for public inspection at the following locations:
     Bureau of Land Management, Wyoming State Office, 5353 
Yellowstone Road, Cheyenne, Wyoming 82003
     Bureau of Land Management, Rawlins Field Office, 1300 N. 
Third Street, Rawlins, Wyoming 82301

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mark Storzer, Field Manager, or John 
Spehar, Rawlins RMP Team Leader, BLM Rawlins Field Office, 1300 N. 
Third Street, Rawlins, Wyoming 8230; or by telephone at (307) 328-4200.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The following description of alternatives 
considered in the Draft RMP/EIS is to provide context for reviewing the 
proposed ACECs. The Draft RMP/EIS documents the direct, indirect, and 
cumulative environmental impacts of four alternatives for management of 
BLM-administered public lands within the Rawlins Field Office. When 
completed, the revised RMP will fulfill the obligations set forth by 
the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Federal Land Policy 
and Management Act, and associated Federal regulations. Four 
alternatives are analyzed in detail:
    1. Alternative 1 (No Action Alternative): Continues existing 
management direction;
    2. Alternative 2: Encourages development and use opportunities 
while minimizing impacts to cultural and natural resources;
    3. Alternative 3: Fosters conservation of natural and cultural 
resources while providing for compatible development and use; and
    4. Alternative 4: Provides development opportunities while 
protecting sensitive resources (Agency Preferred Alternative).
    There are four ACECs in the existing land use plan, the Great 
Divide RMP (1990): Como Bluff National Natural Landmark/ACEC (1,690 
acres); Sand Hills ACEC (7,960 acres); Jep Canyon ACEC (13,810 acres); 
and the Shamrock Hills ACEC (18,400 acres). There are 11 potential new 
ACECs proposed in the Draft RMP/EIS and one proposed expansion of the 
Sand Hills ACEC. The ACECs are:
     Stratton Sagebrush Steppe Research Area ACEC (5,530 
acres): Values of Concern--continuous 30 year historic watershed study 
and infrastructure. Use Limitations--closed to locatable mineral entry, 
mineral material disposal, and land tenure adjustments, including 
     Chain Lakes ACEC (30,560 acres): Values of Concern--
unique, alkaline desert lake system and wildlife habitat. Use 
Limitations--may include use limitations to protect the desert lake 
system and its wetlands.
     Laramie Peak ACEC (18,940 acres): Values of Concern--
crucial winter habitat for big game and habitat for federally-listed 
threatened and endangered and BLM sensitive species. Use Limitations--
proposed locatable mineral use, exploration and development when five 
or more acres of surface disturbance require a plan of operation.
     Red Rim Daley ACEC (11,100 acres): Values of Concern--
crucial winter habitat for pronghorn antelope. Use Limitations--plans 
of operations requirement for locatable mineral exploration and 
development for disturbance of 5 or more acres.
     Cave Creek Cave ACEC (name changed from Shirley Mountain 
Bat Cave, 240 acres): Values of Concern--cave resources including 
hibernaculum for several species of bats. Use Limitations--seasonal 
closure of the Cave Creek cave gate from October 15 through April 30.
     Laramie Plains Lakes ACEC (1,600 acres): Values of 
Concern--potential habitat and reintroduction sites for the endangered 
Wyoming toad. Use Limitations--activities may be limited to protect or 
avoid Wyoming toad habitat.
     Historic Trails ACEC (40,990 acres): Values of Concern--
the Overland and Cherokee Trails and the Rawlins-to-Baggs and Rawlins-
to-Fort Washakie Freight Roads. Use Limitations--use/activities limited 
to maintain visual integrity from the trails; also includes minimizing 
the extent of surface disturbance, oil and gas lease stipulations 
regarding occupancy and closure of some areas near or including the 
trails, and closure to locatable mineral entry and operations.
     Blowout Penstemon ACEC (17,050 acres): Values of Concern--
occupied and potential sand dune habitat for the endangered blowout 
penstemon. Use Limitations--closure to mineral entry and mineral 
material disposals.
     Upper Muddy Creek Watershed/Grizzly ACEC (35,200 acres): 
Values of Concern--unique fish habitats that support a rare community 
of native Colorado River Basin fish (bluehead sucker, flannelmouth 
sucker, roundtail chub, mountain sucker, speckled dace), reintroduction 
area for the Colorado River cutthroat trout and big game crucial winter 
range. Use Limitations--motorized vehicle use limited to designated 
roads and vehicle routes and seasonal closures.
     White-Tailed Prairie Dog ACEC (109,650 acres): Values of 
Concern--white tailed prairie dog complexes (element of the sagebrush 
steppe ecosystem). Use Limitations--motorized vehicle use limited to 
designated roads/vehicle routes.
     High Savery Dam ACEC (530 acres): Values of Concern--
Colorado River cutthroat trout fishery and potential for 
reintroduction. Use Limitations--public access restricted to foot 
travel only.
     JO Ranch expansion of Sand Hills ACEC (4,740 acres): 
Values of Concern--same as Sand Hills with historic cultural properties 
through land exchange. Use Limitations--potential mineral resources use 
limitations dependent on surface ownership and use limitations may 
include those

[[Page 31093]]

needed to protect and preserve the historical and cultural resources 
including the JO Ranch buildings and irrigation system and the stage 
stop along the historical Rawlins-to-Baggs Freight Road.
    Alternative 1 proposes to maintain the status of the four existing 
ACECs identified in the Great Divide RMP. Alternative 2 proposes to 
eliminate the four ACECs established in the Great Divide RMP to areas 
of general management. No new ACECs are proposed. Alternative 3 
proposes to continue to maintain the status of two existing ACECs, Sand 
Hills and Como Bluffs, and establish all of the new (11) ACECs listed 
above. (Alternative 3 does not include the JO Ranch expansion of the 
Sand Hills ACEC.)
    As a result of public scoping and the alternative development 
process, Alternative 4 (Agency Preferred Alternative), proposes the 
following ACECs: Maintain the status of one existing ACEC, Sand Hills 
(7,960 acres) and include the JO Ranch expansion (4,740 acres), and 
establish two new ACECs: Cave Creek Cave (240 acres) and Blowout 
Penstemon (17,050 acres).

Donald A. Simpson,
Associate State Director.
 [FR Doc. E7-10735 Filed 6-4-07; 8:45 am]