[Federal Register: October 22, 2008 (Volume 73, Number 205)]
[Notices]               
[Page 63014-63017]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr22oc08-90]                         

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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Bureau of Land Management

[UT-110-07-1220-PM-24-1A]

 
Notice of Proposed Supplementary Rules for Motorized Dispersed 
Camping at the Sand Spring and Dry Lake Bed Sites Managed by the Kanab 
Field Office, Kane County, UT

AGENCY: Bureau of Land Management, Interior.

ACTION: Proposed Supplementary Rules.

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SUMMARY: The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is proposing supplementary 
rules for motorized camping at two undeveloped sites within the Moquith 
Mountain Wilderness Study Area (WSA). The proposed supplementary rules 
would help protect public health, and maintain Wilderness Study Area 
values and public land recreation opportunities in the area.

DATES: Comments on the proposed supplementary rules must be received or 
postmarked by November 21, 2008 to be assured consideration. In 
developing final supplementary rules, BLM may not consider comments 
postmarked or received in person or by electronic mail after this date.

ADDRESSES: Mail or hand deliver all comments concerning the proposed 
supplementary rule to the Bureau of Land Management, 318 North First 
East, Kanab, Utah 84741 or e-mail comments to Mail_UT-Kanab@ut.blm.gov

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Documents associated with the 
development of these supplementary rules, including but not limited to 
environmental and other analyses, can be viewed by contacting Tom 
Christensen, Outdoor Recreation Planner, BLM Kanab Field Office, 318 
North First East, Kanab, Utah 84741, or telephone 435-644-4600.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Public Comment Procedures

    This notice and a map depicting the area included under this 
requirement are available for public review at the Kanab Field Office. 
The area covered by this requirement is also shown on a map on the 
Kanab Field Office's Web site at http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/leaving.cgi?from=leavingFR.html&log=linklog&to=http://www.blm.gov/ut/st/en/fo/kanab.html.
    Written comments on the proposed supplementary rules should be 
specific, confined to issues pertinent to the proposed supplementary 
rules, and should explain the reason for any recommended change. Where 
possible, comments should reference the specific section or paragraph 
of the rule that the comment is addressing. The BLM need not consider 
(a) comments that BLM receives after the close of the comment period 
(see DATES), unless they are postmarked or electronically dated before 
the deadline, or (b) comments delivered to an address other than those 
listed above (see ADDRESSES). You may also access and comment on the 
proposed supplementary rules at the Federal eRulemaking Portal by 
following the instructions at that site (see ADDRESSES).
    Comments, including names, street addresses, and other contact 
information of respondents, will be available for public review at the 
Kanab Field Office, 318 North First East, Kanab, Utah 84741, during 
regular business hours (7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.), Monday through Friday, 
except Federal holidays.
    Before including your address, telephone 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.

II. Background

    The BLM established the 14,830-acre Moquith Mountain WSA in 1980 
upon determining that the public lands that now comprise the WSA 
contain wilderness characteristics of naturalness, outstanding 
opportunities for solitude, and primitive and unconfined recreation 
values. The Wilderness Act (16 U.S.C. 1131-1136) and section 603 of the 
Federal Land Policy and Management Act (43 U.S.C. 1782) provided the 
authority for establishing the WSA. The BLM Kanab Field Office in Kane 
County, Utah manages the WSA.
    The following supplementary rules are proposed to implement the 
Vermilion Management Framework Plan (MFP) Amendment and associated 
Decision Record (August 2000) with respect to motorized dispersed 
camping at two sites within the WSA. These sites, which are known as 
Sand Spring and the dry lake bed, are located on the periphery of the 
Coral Pink Sand Dunes. The northern portion of the Coral Pink Sand 
Dunes (approximately 1,500 acres) is part of the Moquith Mountain WSA. 
The remaining 2,000 acres of the Dunes are within Coral Pink Sand Dunes 
State Park. No distinctive land form features separate BLM and State 
Park lands.
    Recreation facilities in the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park 
consist of a 22-unit developed campground (with water, rest room, and 
shower facilities), a day-use area, parking lot, interpretive board 
walk, utility facilities and an office. The BLM administers the nine-
unit Ponderosa Grove Campground at the northern end of the sand dunes. 
Facilities at Ponderosa Grove include picnic tables, grills, and fire 
rings, vault toilets, and limited vehicle parking. At times during the 
year, especially on holiday weekends, these developed

[[Page 63015]]

campgrounds are not sufficient to meet camping needs.
    For this reason, the MFP Amendment provides for alternative, 
undeveloped camping areas at Sand Spring and up to four acres of the 
dry lake bed, and includes some rules to prevent harm to visitors or 
resources. This type of recreation is known as dispersed camping. The 
MFP Amendment also provides for cooperation with the State Park in the 
management of the WSA. The BLM has shared management of the dunes 
portion of the WSA with the State Park since 2002, under the terms of 
an Assistance Agreement. The BLM contributes funding in exchange for 
enhanced staffing and patrols provided by State Park personnel. At 
present, no supplementary rules are in effect for Sand Spring or the 
dry lake bed.

III. Discussion of Proposed Supplementary Rules

    As noted in the Vermilion MFP Amendment, the BLM has allowed 
dispersed motorized and non-motorized camping at Sand Spring and the 
dry lake bed for several years, and has been monitoring camping 
activities at the two sites. Recently BLM has observed increasing 
hazards to visitors and to natural resources due to fires and improper 
disposal of garbage, ashes, and wastewater (also known as gray water) 
from sinks, baths or laundry machines.

A. Proposed Fire Rules

    At Sand Spring, the BLM has observed damage to vegetation and 
adjacent fencing caused by fires, as well as safety and sanitation 
hazards resulting from trash left in fire rings. Since these impacts 
are nearly always associated with campers situated beside the main 
dunes access route, the BLM has determined that a prohibition on all 
ground fires within a 500-foot radius of the designated motorized entry 
path to the sand dunes within the Moquith Mountain WSA is necessary in 
order to safeguard public safety and to prevent damage to the 
wilderness characteristics of the WSA.
    At the dry lake bed, the BLM has observed that the camping areas 
can become tightly confined. In these circumstances, open fires and 
fires in fire rings put visitors' safety at risk, and can adversely 
impact the wilderness characteristics of the Moquith Mountain WSA. The 
BLM has determined that, while an outright prohibition on ground fires 
is unwarranted at the dry lake bed, requiring fire pans at that 
location would help contain fire, and facilitate the collection and 
removal of ashes. Safety hazards and impacts to the ground and 
vegetation would thus be reduced.
    The BLM does not propose to require any specific type of fire pan 
in these supplementary rules. However, BLM recommends the use of a 
metal tray with rigid sides, at least 3 inches high, and a stand that 
elevates the fire pan above the ground.

B. Proposed Disposal Rules

    Recently the BLM has observed unsanitary conditions at both Sand 
Spring and the dry lake bed, as a result of the disposal of garbage, 
ashes, and gray water. Visitors' health, safety, and recreational 
experience are at risk, as is the naturalness character of the WSA.
    Existing regulations at 43 CFR 8365.1 through 8365.1-7 address the 
use and occupancy of all public lands, including the undeveloped 
campsites at Sand Spring and the dry lake bed. One of these regulations 
provides that no person shall dispose of ``sewage or petroleum products 
or dump refuse or waste other than wash water from any trailer or other 
vehicle except in places or receptacles provided for that purpose.'' 43 
CFR 8365.1-1(b)(3). Since Sand Spring and the dry bed are undeveloped 
sites without designated disposal places or receptacles, the BLM 
construes this existing regulation as a prohibition against disposal of 
water from toilets at those locations. The existing regulation thus 
mitigates some, but not all, of the unsanitary conditions that have 
been observed at Sand Spring and the dry lake bed.
    In order to further improve conditions, the proposed supplementary 
rules would prohibit the disposal of garbage, ashes and gray water, and 
the digging of holes for the purpose of such disposal. The objectives 
of such supplementary rules would be to safeguard public health and 
safety, restore a high-quality recreational experience for all 
visitors, and minimize the human imprint on the WSA.
    If these proposed supplementary rules become effective, the BLM 
will include information about them on signs at or leading to major 
camping areas in the WSA.

IV. Procedural Matters

Executive Order 12866, Regulatory Planning and Review

    These proposed supplementary rules are not a significant regulatory 
action and are not subject to review by the Office of Management and 
Budget under Executive Order 12866. The proposed supplementary rules 
would not have an annual effect of $100 million or more on the economy. 
They are not intended to affect commercial activity, but impose rules 
of conduct on recreational visitors for health protection reasons in a 
limited area of public lands. The supplementary rules would not 
adversely affect, in a material way, the economy, productivity, 
competition, jobs, the environment, public health or safety, or State, 
local, or tribal Governments or communities. The proposed supplementary 
rules would not create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere 
with an action taken or planned by another agency. The proposed 
supplementary rules do not materially alter the budgetary effects of 
entitlements, grants, user fees, or loan programs or the right or 
obligations of their recipients, nor do they raise novel legal or 
policy issues. They merely strive to protect human health, safety, and 
the environment.

Clarity of the Rules

    Executive Order 12866 requires each agency to write regulations 
that are simple and easy to understand. The BLM invites your comments 
on how to make these proposed supplementary rules easier to understand, 
including answers to questions such as the following:
    (1) Are the requirements in the proposed supplementary rules 
clearly stated?
    (2) Do the proposed supplementary rules contain technical language 
or jargon that interferes with their clarity?
    (3) Does the format of the proposed supplementary rules (grouping 
and order of sections, use of headings, paragraphing, etc.) aid or 
reduce their clarity?
    (4) Would the proposed supplementary rules be easier to understand 
if they were divided into more (but shorter) sections?
    (5) Is the description of the proposed supplementary rules in the 
SUPPLMENTARY INFORMATION section of this preamble helpful in 
understanding the proposed supplementary rules? How could this 
description be more helpful in making the proposed supplementary rules 
easier to understand?
    Please send any comments you may have on the clarity of the 
proposed supplementary rules to one of the addresses specified in the 
ADDRESSES section.

National Environmental Policy Act

    As documented in Environmental Assessment No. UT-110-08-012 
(``Supplementary Rules for Dry Lakebed and Sand Spring at Coral Pink 
Sand Dunes''), and an associated Finding of No Significant Impact and 
Decision Record, the proposed supplementary

[[Page 63016]]

rules do not constitute a major Federal action significantly affecting 
the quality of the human environment under Section 102(2)(C) of the 
National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, 42 U.S.C. 4332(2)(C).

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    Congress enacted the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), 5 U.S.C. 
601-612, to ensure that Government regulations do not unnecessarily or 
disproportionately burden small entities. The RFA requires a regulatory 
flexibility analysis if a rule would have a significant economic 
impact, either detrimental or beneficial, on a substantial number of 
small entities. The proposed supplementary rules do not pertain 
specifically to commercial or governmental entities of any size, but to 
public recreational use of specific public lands. Therefore, the BLM 
has determined under the RFA that the proposed supplementary rules 
would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of 
small entities.

Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act

    These proposed supplementary rules do not constitute a ``major 
rule'' as defined at 5 U.S.C. 804(2). The proposed supplementary rules 
merely contain rules of conduct for recreational use of certain public 
lands. The proposed supplementary rules would not affect business, 
commercial, or industrial use of the public lands.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

    The proposed supplementary rules would not impose an unfunded 
mandate on State, local, or tribal Governments in the aggregate, or the 
private sector, of more than $100 million per year; nor would they have 
a significant or unique effect on small governments. Theses proposed 
supplementary rules do not require anything of State, local, or tribal 
Governments. Therefore, the BLM is not required to prepare a statement 
containing the information required by the Unfunded Mandates Reform 
Act, 2 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.

Executive Order 12630, Governmental Actions and Interference with 
Constitutionally Protected Property Rights (Takings)

    The proposed supplementary rules are not a Government action 
capable of interfering with constitutionally protected property rights. 
The proposed supplementary rules do not address property rights in any 
form, and do not cause the impairment of anybody's property rights. 
Therefore, the BLM has determined that these proposed supplementary 
rules would not cause a taking of private property or require further 
discussion of takings implications under this Executive Order.

Executive Order 13132, Federalism

    The proposed supplementary rules would not have a substantial 
direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the National 
Government and the States, or on the distribution of power and 
responsibilities among the various levels of Government. The proposed 
supplementary rules apply on a limited area of land in only one State, 
Utah. Therefore, the BLM has determined that the proposed supplementary 
rules do not have sufficient Federalism implications to warrant 
preparation of a Federalism assessment.

Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform

    Under Executive Order 12988, the BLM has determined that the 
proposed supplementary rules would not unduly burden the judicial 
system and that the requirements of sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) of the 
Order are met. The supplementary rules contain rules of conduct for 
recreational use of certain public lands to protect human health and 
the environment.

Executive Order 13175, Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal 
Governments

    In accordance with Executive Order 13175, the BLM has found that 
these proposed supplementary rules do not include policies that have 
tribal implications. The proposed supplementary rules do not affect 
lands held for the benefit of Indians, Aleuts, or Eskimos.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    These proposed supplementary rules do not contain information 
collection requirements that the Office of Management and Budget must 
approve under the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.

Executive Order 13211, Actions Concerning Regulations That 
Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use

    These proposed supplementary rules do not comprise a significant 
energy action. The supplementary rules would not have an adverse effect 
on energy supplies, production, or consumption. They only address 
motorized dispersed camping at two sites on BLM-administered public 
lands, and have no connection with energy policy.

Author

    The principal author of the proposed supplementary rules is Tom 
Christensen, Outdoor Recreation Planner, Kanab Field Office, Bureau of 
Land Management.
    For the reasons stated in the Preamble, and under the authority for 
supplementary rules at 43 U.S.C. 1740 and 43 CFR 8365.1-6, the Utah 
State Director, Bureau of Land Management, proposes to issue these 
supplementary rules for public lands managed by the BLM in Utah, to 
read as follows:

Supplementary Rules for Dispersed Camping at the Sand Spring and Dry 
Lake Bed Sites Managed by the Kanab Field Office, Kane County, UT

Definitions

    Gray water: Wastewater from a sink, bath or laundry machine.
    Motorized dispersed camping: The erecting of a tent or other 
shelter, with the parking of a motor vehicle, motor home or trailer, on 
public lands away from developed recreation facilities, for the 
apparent purpose of overnight occupancy while engaged in recreational 
activities such as hiking, hunting, fishing, bicycling, sightseeing, 
off-road vehicle activities, or other generally recognized forms of 
recreation.

Supplementary Rules

    1. These supplementary rules apply, except as specifically 
exempted, to all motorized dispersed camping in and adjacent to Sand 
Spring and the dry lake bed campsites within the Moquith Mountain 
Wilderness Study Area (WSA). These campsites are comprised of public 
lands administered by the Bureau of Land Management near Kanab, Utah 
inclusive of the following sections: T. 43 S., R. 7 W., Section 17 and 
18; and T. 43 S., R. 8 W., Section 14.
    2. These supplementary rules are in effect on a year-round basis 
and will remain in effect until modified by the authorized officer.
    3. Ground fires are prohibited at Sand Spring within a 500-foot 
radius of the designated motorized entry path to the sand dunes within 
the Moquith Mountain WSA.
    4. Ground fires that are not contained within a fire pan are 
prohibited at the dry lake bed.
    5. Disposal of garbage, ashes or gray water is prohibited at Sand 
Spring and the dry lake bed. The digging of holes for the purpose of 
disposal of garbage,

[[Page 63017]]

ashes or gray water at Sand Spring and the dry lake bed is also 
prohibited.

Enforcement

    Any person who violates any of these supplementary rules may be 
tried before a United States Magistrate and fined no more than $1,000, 
imprisoned no more than 12 months, or both, in accordance with 43 
U.S.C. 1733(a) and 43 CFR 8360.0-7. Such violations may also be subject 
to the enhanced penalties provided by 18 U.S.C 3571 and 3581. In 
accordance with 43 CFR 8365.1-7, State or local officials may also 
impose penalties for violations of Utah law.

Jeff Rawson,
Acting State Director.
[FR Doc. E8-25153 Filed 10-21-08; 8:45 am]

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