[Federal Register: September 5, 2008 (Volume 73, Number 173)]
[Notices]               
[Page 51840-51842]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr05se08-72]                         

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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Bureau of Land Management

[UT-090-1610-017J]

 
Notice of Availability of Monticello Field Office Proposed 
Resource Management Plan and Final Environmental Impact Statement 
(PRMP/FEIS)

AGENCY: Bureau of Land Management, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability.

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SUMMARY: In accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 
1969 and the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976, the Bureau 
of Land Management (BLM) has prepared a Proposed Resource Management 
Plan/Final Environmental Impact Statement (PRMP/FEIS) for the 
Monticello Field Office.

DATES: The BLM planning regulations (43 CFR 1610.5-2) state that any 
person who meets the conditions as described in the regulations may 
protest the BLM's PRMP/FEIS. A person who meets the conditions and 
files a protest must file the protest within 30 days of the date that 
the Environmental Protection Agency publishes this notice in the 
Federal Register.

ADDRESSES: Copies of the Monticello Field Office PRMP/FEIS were sent to 
affected Federal, State, and local government agencies and to 
interested parties. Copies of the PRMP/FEIS are available for public 
inspection at:

Monticello Field Office, 365 N. Main, Monticello, UT 84535.
Utah State Office, 440 West 200 South, Salt Lake City, UT 84145.

    Interested persons may also review the PRMP/FEIS on the Internet at 
http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/leaving.cgi?from=leavingFR.html&log=linklog&to=http://www.blm.gov/ut/st/en/fo/monticello/planning.html. All protests 
must be in writing and mailed to the following addresses:

Regular Mail: Director (210), Attention: Brenda Williams, P.O. Box 
66538, Washington, DC 20035.
Overnight Mail: Director (210), Attention: Brenda Williams, 1620 L 
Street, NW., Suite 1075, Washington, DC 20036.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Nick Sandberg, Monticello Field 
Office, 365 N. Main, Monticello, UT 84535; phone: (435) 587-1500; or e-
mail at: Nick_Sandberg@blm.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Monticello RMP planning area is located 
in southeast Utah. The BLM administers approximately 1.8 million acres 
of surface estate and 2.5 million

[[Page 51841]]

acres of Federal mineral estate within the planning area.
    The Monticello RMP will provide future broad-scale management 
direction for land use allocations and allowable uses on public lands 
within the planning area. Implementation of the decisions of the PRMP 
would apply only to BLM-administered public lands and Federal mineral 
estate. In the Monticello Field Office Draft RMP/EIS (DRMP/DEIS), which 
was released for a 90-day public review and comment period in November 
2007, five alternatives were analyzed, including a No Action 
alternative. These alternatives were developed through issue 
identification during the scoping process. Such issues included: 
Recreation use and off-highway vehicles (OHVs), mineral development, 
special designations (ACECs and WSRs), cultural resource management, 
and non-WSA lands with Wilderness Characteristics.
    The PRMP/FEIS would designate two new Areas of Critical 
Environmental Concern (ACECs), and the continuation of five existing 
ACECs, totaling 74,430 acres. Resource use limitations that apply to 
the proposed ACECs include a range of different prescriptions as 
described in Table 1 below.

                         Table 1--Evaluation of Areas of Critical Environmental Concern
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                ACEC                   Values of concern          Resource use limitations             Acres
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Alkali Ridge.......................  Cultural.............  All cultural properties eligible for          39,196
                                                             the NRHP would be surrounded by an
                                                             avoidance area sufficient to allow
                                                             permanent protection; where
                                                             avoidance is not possible and
                                                             adverse impacts may occur, BLM
                                                             would develop appropriate
                                                             mitigation measures; available for
                                                             mineral leasing under controlled
                                                             surface use except the National
                                                             Historic Landmark which would be
                                                             available under No Surface
                                                             Occupancy; confine woodland harvest
                                                             to specific areas if cultural
                                                             resources are being impacted; OHV
                                                             use limited to designated routes.
Hovenweep..........................  Cultural.............  Visual Protection Zone: Available              2,439
                                                             for mineral leasing with No Surface
                                                             Occupancy; managed as VRM II.
                                     .....................  Cajon Pond: Available for mineral
                                                             leasing and other surface uses with
                                                             stipulations to prevent surface
                                                             occupancy or surface disturbance
                                                             during March 1-June 30 and excluded
                                                             from livestock use yearlong within
                                                             the fenced portion.
                                     .....................  General Area: All cultural
                                                             properties eligible for the NRHP
                                                             would be surrounded by an avoidance
                                                             area sufficient to allow permanent
                                                             protection; where avoidance is not
                                                             possible and adverse impacts may
                                                             occur, BLM would develop
                                                             appropriate mitigation measures;
                                                             available for mineral leasing under
                                                             controlled surface use; OHV use
                                                             limited to designated roads and
                                                             trails; unavailable for disposal of
                                                             mineral materials, and excluded
                                                             from private or commercial use of
                                                             woodland products, except for
                                                             limited on-site collection of dead
                                                             wood for campfires.
Indian Creek.......................  Scenic...............  Available for mineral leasing                  3,908
                                                             subject to No Surface Occupancy;
                                                             unavailable for mineral material
                                                             disposal; and unavailable for
                                                             private or commercial use of
                                                             woodland products including on-site
                                                             collection of dead wood for
                                                             campfires; managed as VRM I and
                                                             closed to OHV use.
Lavender Mesa......................  Relict Vegetation....  Excluded from land treatments or                 649
                                                             other improvements, except for test
                                                             plots and facilities necessary for
                                                             study of the plant communities, and
                                                             restoration/reclamation activities;
                                                             available for mineral leasing
                                                             subject to No Surface Occupancy;
                                                             campfires are not allowed; limit
                                                             recreation use if vegetation
                                                             communities are being adversely
                                                             impacted; unavailable for mineral
                                                             material disposal; unavailable for
                                                             private or commercial use of
                                                             woodland products including limited
                                                             on-site collection of dead wood for
                                                             campfires; unavailable for
                                                             livestock grazing, including saddle
                                                             stock and pack animals allowed for
                                                             access; excluded from wildlife
                                                             habitat improvements and watershed
                                                             control structures; managed as VRM
                                                             II; closed to OHV use; and excluded
                                                             from surface disturbance by
                                                             mechanized or motorized equipment,
                                                             except helicopter access for
                                                             scientific study and heliportable
                                                             equipment insofar as possible.
Shay Canyon........................  Cultural.............  OHV and mechanized travel limited to             119
                                                             designated routes; no surface
                                                             disturbance for vegetation,
                                                             watershed, or wildlife treatments/
                                                             improvements; manage as NSO for oil
                                                             and gas; open to geophysical
                                                             exploration as long as it is
                                                             consistent with the objectives of
                                                             the ACEC; grazing restricted to
                                                             trailing only; with the exception
                                                             of side canyons, hiking limited to
                                                             designated trails; open to mineral
                                                             entry with an approved plan of
                                                             operations to avoid impacts to
                                                             cultural and paleontological
                                                             resources; unavailable for disposal
                                                             of mineral materials; closed to
                                                             campfires; unavailable for private
                                                             or commercial use of woodland
                                                             products including on-site
                                                             collection of dead wood for
                                                             campfires; recreation use may be
                                                             limited if cultural and
                                                             paleontological resources are
                                                             impacted; and closed to camping.

[[Page 51842]]


San Juan River.....................  Scenic, Cultural,      Vehicle access, including OHVs/                5,258
                                      Wildlife, Natural      mechanized, limited to designated
                                      Systems.               routes; unavailable for private/
                                                             commercial use of woodland products
                                                             except for limited on-site
                                                             collection of dead wood for
                                                             campfires, driftwood collection
                                                             only would be allowed within
                                                             floodplains; available for
                                                             livestock use October 1-May 31 and
                                                             must incorporate rest-rotation and/
                                                             or deferred management systems;
                                                             available for oil and gas leasing
                                                             subject to No Surface Occupancy;
                                                             unavailable for mineral material
                                                             disposal; recommended for
                                                             withdrawal from locatable mineral
                                                             entry; limit recreation use if
                                                             wildlife values are being adversely
                                                             impacted; closed to camping in
                                                             areas as necessary to protect
                                                             cultural, wildlife and natural
                                                             processes; managed as VRM I (parts)
                                                             and VRM II (parts) and VRM III
                                                             (parts); designated access trails
                                                             to cultural sites as necessary to
                                                             protect cultural resources; no
                                                             camping in cultural sites; and
                                                             ropes and other climbing aids not
                                                             allowed for access to ruins,
                                                             cultural sites, and nesting raptors.
Valley of the Gods.................  Scenic...............  Unavailable for mineral leasing;              22,863
                                                             unavailable for mineral material
                                                             disposal; OHV use limited to
                                                             designated roads and trails;
                                                             managed as VRM I and unavailable
                                                             for private/commercial use of
                                                             woodland products.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Comments on the Monticello Field Office DRMP/DEIS received from the 
public and internal BLM review were considered and incorporated as 
appropriate into the PRMP/FEIS. Public comments resulted in the 
addition of clarifying text, but did not significantly change proposed 
land use plan decisions.
    Instructions for filing a protest with the Director of the BLM 
regarding the PRMP/FEIS may be found in the Dear Reader Letter of the 
PRMP/FEIS and at 43 CFR 1610.5-2. E-mailed and faxed protests will not 
be accepted as valid protests unless the protesting party also provides 
the original letter by either regular or overnight mail postmarked by 
the close of the protest period. Under these conditions, the BLM will 
consider the e-mailed or faxed protest as an advance copy and it will 
receive full consideration. If you wish to provide the BLM with such 
advance notification, please direct faxed protests to the attention of 
the BLM protest coordinator at 202-452-5112, and e-mails to Brenda_
Hudgens-Williams@blm.gov. All protests, including the follow-up letter 
(if e-mailing or faxing) must be in writing and mailed to the 
appropriate address, as set forth in the ADDRESSES section above.
    Before including your phone number, e-mail address, or other 
personal identifying information in your protest, you should be aware 
that your entire protest--including your personal identifying 
information--may be made publicly available at any time. While you can 
ask us in your protest to withhold your personal identifying 
information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be 
able to do so.

    Authority: 40 CFR 1506.6, 43 CFR 1610.2, 43 CFR 1610.5-1

Selma Sierra,
Utah State Director.
[FR Doc. E8-20670 Filed 9-4-08; 8:45 am]

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