[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 183 (Monday, September 22, 2014)]
[Notices]
[Page 56602]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-22493]


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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Fish and Wildlife Service

[Docket No. FWS-R9-ES-2011-0099; FF09E40000 145 FXES11150900000]
RIN 1018-AY29


Policy Regarding Voluntary Prelisting Conservation Actions

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Announcement of draft policy; extension of comment period.

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SUMMARY: On July 22, 2014, we, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 
announced a draft policy on crediting voluntary conservation actions 
taken for species prior to their listing under the Endangered Species 
Act. The proposed policy seeks to give landowners, government agencies, 
and others incentives to carry out voluntary conservation actions for 
nonlisted species by allowing the benefits to the species from a 
voluntary conservation action undertaken prior to listing under the Act 
to be used--either by the person who undertook such action or by a 
third party--to mitigate or to serve as a compensatory measure for the 
detrimental effects of another action undertaken after listing. This 
draft policy, if adopted, would help us further our efforts to protect 
native species and conserve the ecosystems on which they depend.
    We announce the extension of the comment period for our July 22, 
2014, proposed policy to ensure the public has sufficient time to 
comment on the proposed policy.

DATES: We will accept comments from all interested parties until 
November 6, 2014. Please note that if you are using the Federal 
eRulemaking Portal (see ADDRESSES below), the deadline for submitting 
an electronic comment is 11:59 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on this date.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by one of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. In 
the Search box enter the Docket number for the proposed policy, which 
is FWS-R9-ES-2011-0099. You may enter a comment by clicking on 
``Comment Now!''. Please ensure that you have found the correct 
document before submitting your comment.
     U.S. mail or hand delivery: Public Comments Processing, 
Attn: Docket No. FWS-R9-ES-2011-0099; Division of Policy and Directives 
Management; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; MS: PDM, 5275 Leesburg 
Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803.
    We will post all comments on http://www.regulations.gov. This 
generally means that we will post any personal information you provide 
us (see Public Comments below for more information).

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jim Serfis, Chief, Branch of 
Communications and Candidate Conservation, U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service Headquarters, MS: ES, 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 
22041-3803, telephone 703/358-2171.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    On July 22, 2014 (79 FR 42525), we published a draft policy on 
crediting voluntary conservation actions taken for species prior to 
their listing under the Endangered Species Act and requested comments, 
information, and suggestions from the public. See that document for 
specific questions we asked and for more detailed information.
    We have received a request for an extension of the comment period 
from the Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies so that State fish and 
wildlife agencies could have adequate time to submit comments in 
response to the proposal. To accommodate this request, we extend the 
comment period for an additional 45 days.

Public Comments

    If you previously submitted comments or information on the proposed 
policy, please do not resubmit them. We have incorporated them into the 
public record, and we will fully consider them in our final policy. Our 
final policy will take into consideration all written comments and any 
additional information we receive.
    We intend that a final policy will consider information and 
recommendations from all interested parties. We, therefore, solicit 
comments, information, and recommendations from governmental agencies, 
Indian Tribes, the scientific community, industry groups, environmental 
interest groups, and any other interested parties. All comments and 
materials received by the date listed above in DATES will be considered 
prior to the approval of a final document.
    If you submit information via http://www.regulations.gov, your 
entire submission--including any personal identifying information--will 
be posted on the Web site. If your submission is made via a hardcopy 
that includes personal identifying information, you may request at the 
top of your document that we withhold this information from public 
review. However, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. We 
will post all hardcopy submissions on http://www.regulations.gov.

Authority

    The authority for this action is the Endangered Species Act of 
1973, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.).

     Dated: September 16, 2014.
Stephen Guertin,
Acting Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
[FR Doc. 2014-22493 Filed 9-19-14; 8:45 am]
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