[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 105 (Thursday, May 31, 2012)]
[Pages 32132-32133]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-13159]



Bureau of Indian Affairs

Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for 
the Proposed Fee-to-Trust Transfer of Property and Subsequent 
Development of a Resort/Hotel and Ancillary Facilities in the City of 
Taunton, MA and Tribal Government Facilities in the Town of Mashpee, MA 
by the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe

AGENCY: Bureau of Indian Affairs, Interior.

ACTION: Notice.


SUMMARY: This notice advises the public that the Bureau of Indian 
Affairs (BIA) intends to gather the information necessary for preparing 
an environmental impact statement (EIS) for the conveyance into trust 
of 170.1 acres of land currently held by the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe 
(Tribe) in the Town of Mashpee, Massachusetts, and 146.39 acres of land 
in the City of Taunton. The purpose of the proposed action is to help 
provide for the economic development of the Tribe and to create a 
tribal land base. The Tribe is currently federally recognized but does 
not currently have a federally protected reservation or have land that 
is held in trust for the Tribe by the United States. This notice also 
announces public scoping meetings to identify potential issues, 
alternatives, and content for inclusion in the EIS.

DATES: Written comments on the scope of the EIS or implementation of 
the proposal must arrive by July 2, 2012. The public scoping meetings 
will be held June 20, 2012, in Taunton, Massachusetts, and June 21, 
2012, in Mashpee, Massachusetts. Both meetings will begin at 6 p.m. and 
last until the last public comment is received.

ADDRESSES: You may mail, hand deliver, or telefax written comments to 
Franklin Keel, Regional Director, Eastern Regional Office, Bureau of 
Indian Affairs, 545 Marriott Drive, Suite 700, Nashville, Tennessee 
37214, Telefax (615) 564-6701. Please include your name, return address 
and the caption specifying ``Scoping Comments

[[Page 32133]]

for Proposed Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe Property Trust and Development'' 
on the first page of your written comments. The public scoping meetings 
will be held at the Taunton High School, 50 William Street, Taunton, 
Massachusetts and Mashpee High School, 500 Old Barnstable Road, 
Mashpee, Massachusetts.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Chet McGhee, Regional Environmental 
Scientist, Eastern Regional Office, Bureau of Indian Affairs, 545 
Marriott Drive, Suite 700, Nashville, Tennessee 37214; telephone: (615) 

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Tribe proposes that 146.39 acres in the 
City of Taunton, Massachusetts, be taken into trust and for the 
development of a casino, hotel, parking, and other facilities 
supporting the casino. The Tribe also proposes that 170.1 acres in the 
Town of Mashpee, Massachusetts, be taken into trust, for the 
continuation of its current uses of Tribal government and housing. The 
property in the City of Taunton is located within the current site of 
the Liberty & Union Industrial Park, generally bounded on the south by 
Route 140, on the west by Route 24, on the north by Middleborough 
Avenue, and on the east by Stevens Street. The proposed action is to 
develop a Class III gaming facility including a casino, parking 
structures, hotels, restaurants, retail, and a waterpark. The site is 
proposed to be accessible from Route 140 via Stevens Street. The 
property in the Town of Mashpee is located across eleven parcels 
totaling approximately 170.1 acres, including areas currently in use by 
the Tribe as council offices, a museum, and a burial ground. Proposed 
actions for the parcels include preserving these educational, 
recreational, and cultural sites as well as vacant land areas, in 
addition to developing some vacant land for tribal housing and building 
a permanent Tribal Government Center at the current site of Tribal 
Council Offices.
    Areas of environmental concern so far identified that the EIS will 
address include traffic, air quality, wetland resources, cultural and 
historic resources, water supply, wastewater, storm water, land 
impacts, rare species and wildlife, environmental justice, soils and 
geology, land use, community character, and safety. The range of issues 
addressed in the EIS may also be expanded based on comments received in 
response to this notice and at the public scoping meeting.

Public Comment Availability

    Comments, including names and addresses of respondents, will be 
available for public review at all of the mailing addresses shown in 
the ADDRESSES section (except those for the public meetings) during 
business hours, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except 
holidays. 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 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.


    This notice is published in accordance with section 1503.1 of the 
Council of Environmental Quality regulations (40 CFR parts 1500 through 
1508) and Sec. 46.305 of the Department of Interior Regulations (43 CFR 
part 46) implementing the procedural requirements of the National 
Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), 
and is in the exercise of authority delegated to the Assistant 
Secretary--Indian Affairs by part 209 of the Department Manual.

    Dated: May 24, 2012.
Donald E. Laverdure,
Acting Assistant Secretary--Indian Affairs.
[FR Doc. 2012-13159 Filed 5-30-12; 8:45 am]