[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 70 (Wednesday, April 11, 2012)]
[Pages 21803-21804]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-8683]



Bureau of Land Management

[LLWY93000 L16100000.DU0000]

Notice of Intent To Amend the Resource Management Plan for the 
Rawlins Field Office and Associated Environmental Assessment, Wyoming

AGENCY: Bureau of Land Management, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of Intent.


SUMMARY: In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 
1969 (NEPA), as amended, and the Federal Land Policy and Management Act 
of 1976 (FLPMA), as amended, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) 
Rawlins Field Office (RFO), Rawlins, Wyoming, intends to prepare a 
Resource Management Plan (RMP) amendment with an associated 
Environmental Assessment (EA) for the RFO and by this notice is 
announcing the beginning of the scoping process to solicit public 
comments and identify issues.

DATES: This notice initiates the public scoping process for the RMP 
amendment with associated EA. Comments on issues may be submitted in 
writing until May 11, 2012. The dates and locations of any scoping 
meetings will be announced at least 15 days in advance through the 
local news media, newspapers, and the BLM Web site at: http://www.blm.gov/wy/st/en/programs/Planning/rmps/rawlins.html. In order to 
be included in the analysis, all comments must be received prior to the 
close of the 30-day scoping period or 30 days after the last public 
meeting, whichever is later. The BLM will provide additional 
opportunities for public participation, as appropriate.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments on issues and planning criteria 
related to the Rawlins RMP Visual Resource

[[Page 21804]]

Management Amendment and Areas of Critical Environmental Concern 
Documentation/EA by any of the following methods:
     Web site: http://www.blm.gov/wy/st/en/programs/Planning/rmps/rawlins.html.
     Email: [email protected]. Please reference 
``Rawlins VRM Review'' in the subject line.
     Fax: 307-328-4224
     Mail: Bureau of Land Management, Rawlins Field Office, 
1300 North Third Street, P.O. Box 2407, Rawlins, Wyoming 82301-2407.

All comments must include a legible full name and address on the 
envelope, letter, fax, postcard, or email.
    Documents pertinent to this proposal may be examined at the Rawlins 
Field Office, 1300 North Third Street, Rawlins, Wyoming.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Or to have your name added to our 
mailing list, contact John Spehar, Rawlins Field Office Plan Amendment 
Team Leader, telephone 307-328-4200; address, Bureau of Land 
Management, Rawlins Field Office, 1300 North Third Street, P.O. Box 
2407, Rawlins, Wyoming 82301-2407; email, [email protected]. Persons who 
use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal 
Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1-800-877-8339 to contact the above 
individual during normal business hours. The FIRS is available 24 hours 
a day, 7 days a week, to leave a message or question with the above 
individual. You will receive a reply during normal business hours.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This document provides notice that the BLM 
RFO, Rawlins, Wyoming, intends to prepare an RMP amendment with an 
associated EA for the RFO, announces the beginning of the scoping 
process, and seeks public input on issues and planning criteria. The 
planning area is located in Albany, Carbon, Laramie and eastern 
Sweetwater counties, Wyoming, and encompasses approximately 3.5 million 
acres of BLM-administered public land and 4.5 million acres of Federal 
sub-surface mineral estate.
    The BLM completed the Rawlins RMP revision in December 2008. 
However, the BLM's resolution of two protest issues--one regarding 
visual resource management (VRM) and the other regarding Areas of 
Critical Environmental Concern (ACECs)--required the RFO to conduct 
additional planning. In response to the first issue, the RFO has 
updated the visual resources inventory within the planning area. The 
BLM will use this updated inventory as a baseline to consider, analyze, 
and designate VRM classes for BLM-administered lands in the planning 
    This review will not include the decision area for the Chokecherry/
Sierra Madre wind energy project, however, as a VRM amendment to the 
Rawlins RMP is being separately considered in the NEPA process 
associated with that project's review. Second, the BLM received 
nominations for ACECs from the public that were not reviewed or 
considered during the RMP revision process. The BLM will use this 
planning process to review and consider these nominations for potential 
designation as ACECs.
    The purpose of the public scoping process is to determine relevant 
issues that will influence the scope of the environmental analysis, 
including alternatives, and guide the planning process. Preliminary 
issues for the plan amendment area have been identified by BLM 
personnel; Federal, State, and local agencies; and other stakeholders. 
The issues include: Energy development; special designations; resource 
accessibility; public land-urban interface; special status species; 
water quality; vegetation management; recreation, cultural resource, 
and paleontological resource management.
    Preliminary planning criteria include:
     The RMP amendment will focus only on VRM class 
designations and review of previously submitted ACEC nominations;
     The RMP amendment will comply with NEPA, FLPMA, and other 
applicable laws, executive orders, regulations and policy;
     The RMP amendment will recognize valid existing rights;
     Lands covered in the EA for the plan amendment include 
any/all lands that may affect, or be affected by, the management 
occurring on the BLM-administered public lands in the RFO. However, 
planning decisions in the RMP and the VRM-targeted amendment will apply 
only to the BLM-administered public lands and Federal mineral estate in 
the planning area; and
     A collaborative and multi-jurisdictional approach will be 
used, where possible, to jointly determine the desired future condition 
and management direction for the public lands. To the extent possible 
and within legal and regulatory parameters, the BLM management and 
planning decisions will complement the planning and management 
decisions of other agencies, State and local governments, and Native 
American tribes, with jurisdictions intermingled with, and adjacent to, 
the planning area.
    You may submit comments on issues and planning criteria in writing 
to the BLM at any 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 by the close of the 30-day 
scoping period or within 30 days of the last public meeting, whichever 
is later.
    Before including your address, phone number, email 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 may 
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. The BLM will evaluate identified issues to be addressed in 
the plan, and will place them into one of three categories:
    1. Issues to be resolved in the plan amendment;
    2. Issues to be resolved through policy or administrative action; 
    3. Issues beyond the scope of this plan amendment.
    The BLM will provide an explanation in the Draft RMP Amendment/EA 
as to why an issue was placed in category two or three. The public is 
also encouraged to help identify any management questions and concerns 
that should be addressed in the plan amendment. 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.
    The BLM will use an interdisciplinary approach during the plan 
amendment process in order to consider the variety of resource issues 
and concerns identified. Specialists with expertise in the following 
disciplines will be involved in the planning process: Air quality, 
cultural resources, fire and fuels management, forest management, lands 
and realty, rangeland management, minerals and geology, outdoor 
recreation, paleontology, wildlife and fisheries, lands and realty, 
hydrology, soils, sociology and economics, and wild horses.

    Authority: 40 CFR 1501.7, 43 CFR 1610.2

Larry Claypool,
Acting State Director, Wyoming.
[FR Doc. 2012-8683 Filed 4-10-12; 8:45 am]