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Forests Release Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement for Land Management Plan Amendment

Forest Service officials announced on Monday the release of the Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement for a Proposed Amendment to the Land Management Plans for the four Southern California national forests (the Angeles, Cleveland, Los Padres and San Bernardino).

The Final SEIS incorporates the changes made in response to comments on the Draft SEIS, and includes an additional land use zone alternative. The Final SEIS includes an evaluation of four land use zone alternatives, and three monitoring alternatives.

The Final SEIS can be found on the project webpage by clicking here.

This Proposed Amendment to the Land Management Plan is part of the Settlement Agreement approved Jan. 3, 2011, in the case of California Resources Agency, et al vs. United States Department of Agriculture, and Center for Biological Diversity, et al vs. United States Department of Agriculture.

The Final SEIS is not a decision document, and is not subject to public comment. Although the document identifies an agency preferred alternative, the Forest Supervisors may select any of the alternatives considered in the analysis.

The next step for the proposed plan amendments is the pre-decisional objection process. The objection process gives an individual or entity an opportunity for an independent Forest Service review and resolution of issues before the approval of the plan, plan amendment, or plan revision. The objection period will open in early 2014.

The objection process starts with the release of a Draft Record of Decision (ROD) for each forest plan, and the 60-day objection period begins when a legal notice informing the public of the availability of the Draft ROD is published in the newspaper of record for each national forest. The relevant documents will also be made available on the project website, and a notice will be sent to any individual or entity that is eligible to file an objection. Objections must be filed within 60 days of the publication of the legal notice.

Because the objection process will begin early next year, objections received prior to the publication of the legal notice for the Draft ROD will not be accepted, acknowledged, or reviewed. For more information on the objection process, please click here to visit the Forest Service National Objection webpage and select the link to the planning objections rules at 36 CFR 219.

For additional information, contact Project Manager Bob Hawkins via email at [email protected].

— Jennifer Gray represents the Forest Service.

 

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