[Federal Register: July 3, 2008 (Volume 73, Number 129)]
[Page 38245-38246]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Bureau of Land Management

[OR 050-08-1430-FR; HAG-8-0132]

Notice of Intent To Prepare a Resource Management Plan Amendment 
and Associated Environmental Assessment for the Bureau of Land 
Management (BLM) Prineville District Deschutes Resource Area, and a 
Proposed Classification of Lands as Suitable for Disposal

AGENCY: Bureau of Land Management, Department of the Interior.

ACTION: Notice of Intent and Proposed Classification of Lands as 
Suitable for Disposal under Section 7 of the Taylor Grazing Act (48 
Stat. 1272), as amended (43 U.S.C. 315f) and 43 CFR Part 2400.


SUMMARY: This document provides notice that the BLM intends to prepare 
an amendment to the Upper Deschutes Resource Management Plan for the 
Prineville District, Deschutes Resource Area and an associated 
Environmental Assessment (EA). The proposed amendment would reclassify 
some lands designated for BLM retention and management (Z-1) in the 
existing Resource Management Plan (RMP) as suitable for disposal (Z-3). 
The BLM is also providing notice of the proposed classification of 
these same lands under Section 7 of the Taylor Grazing Act as suitable 
for disposal. These classifications are required to allow consideration 
of transfer of these lands to the State of Oregon (``the State'') under 
the State Indemnity Selection process. When Oregon was admitted into 
the Union in 1859, the Federal government granted sections 16 and 36 
within every township to the State for support of public schools. 
However, if the Federal government had already disposed of these 
specific sections or reserved them for some other purpose, the State is 
allowed to select other public lands ``in-lieu'' of the unavailable 
sections. To date the State has received approximately 3,000 of the 
5,202 acres owed. The State of Oregon Department of State Lands has 
selected parcels with potential to produce income for the Common School 
Fund through subsequent development of the lands.
    The planning area is located in Deschutes County, Oregon and is 
described as follows:

T. 17 S., R. 12 E., Deschutes County:
    Sec. 1, lots 1-4, S\1/2\N\1/2\, S\1/2\;
    Sec. 12, lot 1, NE\1/4\NW\1/4\, NE\1/4\NE\1/4\, W\1/2\NE\1/4\.
T. 17 S., R. 13 E., Deschutes County:
    Sec. 5, lot 4, W\1/2\SW\1/4\NW\1/4\;
    Sec. 6, lots 1-7, lots 9-11, S\1/2\NE\1/4\, SE\1/4\NW\1/4\, E\1/
2\SW\1/4\, NW\1/4\SE\1/4\;
    Sec. 7, lots 1, 6, 7, 8, & 10.

    These parcels are also commonly referred to as the Deschutes Market 
Road parcels and total 1577.42 acres of public land. Of these acres, 
approximately 85 acres are associated with the historic Huntington 
Road, a mid-19th century military route between The Dalles and Fort 
Klamath, and included within the larger (982 acres) Wagon Roads Area of 
Critical Environmental Concern. The public scoping process also serves 
as the protest period for the proposed classification as required by 32 
CFR 2450.4.

DATES: This notice initiates the 30-day public scoping period. Comments 
on issues and the planning criteria can be submitted in writing to the 
address listed below and will be accepted throughout the creation of 
the EA to amend the RMP. All persons who wish to protest the proposed 
classification must submit comments, objections during this 30-day 
period and identify prior valid rights or other statutory constraints 
that would bar reclassification. All public meetings will be announced 
through the local news media, newsletters, and the BLM Web site http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/leaving.cgi?from=leavingFR.html&log=linklog&to=http://www.blm.gov/or/districts/prineville/index.php at least 15 days prior to 
the event. A public meeting will be held during the plan amendment 
scoping period on Wednesday, July 23, 2008 at 7 p.m. at Pilot Butte 
Elementary School Cafeteria, 1501 NE Neff Road, Bend, Oregon. Early 
participation is encouraged and will help determine the issues to be 
addressed by the EA. In addition to the ongoing public participation 
process, an additional formal opportunity for public participation will 
be provided through a comment period on a Draft EA.

ADDRESSES: Written comments and classification protests should be sent 
to the BLM, Prineville District, 3050 N.E. 3rd Street, Prineville, OR 
97754; Fax: 541-416-6798; E-mail: DSLSelection@blm.gov.
    Documents pertinent to this proposal may be examined at the 
Prineville District Office during regular business hours, 7:45 a.m. 
through 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For further information and/or to have 
your name added to our mailing list, contact Ms. Teal Purrington, BLM 
Planning Lead, Telephone 541-416-6700; e-mail DSLSelection@blm.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On February 6, 2008, the BLM received from 
the State of Oregon, Department of State Lands, an application (Serial 
No. OR 61026) to select the above parcels as indemnity for lands lost 
to the State as provided for by the Oregon Admission Act of February 
14, 1859 (11 Stat. 383, Title 43, U.S.C., Sections 851, 852). Upon the 
filing of the State's application, the land selected was segregated to 
the extent that it is not open to appropriation under the public land 
laws including the mining laws. This segregation shall terminate either 
upon the issuance of the document of conveyance for the land to the 
State, upon rejection of the application, or two years from the date of 
filing of the application, whichever comes first. Processing the 
State's application requires the BLM to consider an amendment to the 
Upper Deschutes RMP and classification of the lands under Section 7 of 
the Taylor Grazing Act. It is the BLM's intent to conduct all 
classification, EA and plan amendment activities and actions 
concurrently. The BLM will work collaboratively with interested parties 
to identify the management decisions that are best suited to local, 
regional, and national needs and concerns. Preliminary issues

[[Page 38246]]

and management concerns have been identified in the existing RMP and by 
BLM personnel, the State, other agencies, and in meetings with 
individuals, adjoining landowners and user groups. The preliminary 
issues that will be addressed in the EA effort include: land tenure and 
classification; Wagon Roads Area of Critical Environmental Concern; 
visual resources; recreational values; historic and cultural resources; 
old growth juniper woodlands; and wildlife populations and habitats.
    You may submit comments on issues in writing to the BLM at the 
public scoping meeting, or you may submit them to the BLM using one of 
the methods listed in the ADDRESSES section above. To be most helpful, 
you should submit comments within 30 days. Before including your 
address, phone number, e-mail 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. The minutes and list of 
attendees for each scoping meeting will be available to the public and 
open for 30 days after the meeting to any participant who wishes to 
clarify the views he or she expressed.
    After gathering public comments on what issues the plan amendment 
should address, the suggested issues will be placed in one of three 
    1. Issues to be resolved in the plan amendment;
    2. Issues resolved through policy or administrative action; or
    3. Issues beyond the scope of this RMPA/EA.
    Rationale will be provided in the plan amendment for each issue 
placed in category two or three. An interdisciplinary approach will be 
used to develop the RMPA/EA in order to consider the variety of 
resource issues and concerns identified. Disciplines involved in the 
planning process will include specialists with expertise in rangeland 
management, minerals and geology, forestry, outdoor recreation, visual 
resources, archaeology, wildlife, lands and realty, and economics. A 
similar notice has been published in the local newspaper.

Deborah Henderson-Norton,
Manager, Prineville District.
[FR Doc. E8-15112 Filed 7-2-08; 8:45 am]