BLM releases draft management plan for public review


  The Bureau of Land Management has released its Draft Resource Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement (RMP/EIS) describing different alternatives for managing public lands within the Miles City Field Office.  This action kicks off a 90-day public comment period for interested publics to submit comments to the BLM. 

Compact disks of the document are being delivered to a number of businesses, organizations, individuals, elected officials, tribal governments and state and federal agencies for review.  The draft document can be viewed on the internet at http://blm.gov/0ykd. A limited number of paper copies of the draft document for the Miles City Field Office are available from BLM’s Miles City Field Office, 111 Garryowen Road.
The Miles City Draft RMP/EIS describes a range of alternatives (including a draft preferred alternative) for managing all of the BLM-administered surface (2,759,155 acres) and mineral estate (11,032,026 acres) managed by the Miles City Field Office in Carter, Custer, Daniels, Dawson, Fallon, Garfield, McCone, Powder River, Prairie, Richland, Roosevelt, Rosebud, Sheridan, Treasure, and Wibaux counties and portions of Big Horn and Valley counties in Montana. 
“The release of the Draft RMP/EIS marks the beginning of a 90-day public review and comment period,” said Todd Yeager, field manager for the Miles City BLM office.  “As part of the review and comment process, we’ve scheduled the following public meetings in an open house format throughout the area to answer questions and gather comments concerning the Draft.”
The public meeting in Terry will be held at the Bolin Multi-Purpose Room, Wednesday, May 8, 2013 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. 
Each meeting will include introductions, a brief BLM presentation, and an opportunity to talk individually with various BLM resource specialists.  Public comment forms will be provided during the meetings for members of the public to submit written comments, which are considered in finalizing the document.
The public may submit written comments related to the Miles City DRMP/EIS by any of the following methods: Email: BLM_MT_MCFO_RMP@blm.gov
 
Fax:    (406) 233-3650
 
Mail: "MCFO RMP Comments", 111 Garryowen Road, Miles City, MT 59301.
Hand-deliver: Miles City Field Office, 111 Garryowen Road, Miles City, MT.
Whenever possible, please reference the page or section in the DRMP/EIS to which the comment applies.  Specific comments addressing concerns that are within BLM’s legal responsibilities and that can be resolved in the land-use planning process would be most helpful.  The Draft RMP/EIS was developed with assistance from local counties, the state, other federal agencies, tribal governments, BLM’s Eastern Montana Resource Advisory Council, and a variety of interest groups.
All letters and emails should include the first and last name of the individual commenting and a complete mailing address.  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. 
“We thank all of the organizations and individuals who helped produce the Draft RMP/EIS,” said Yeager.  “It’s been a long but collaborative process, and we hope that spirit will continue as we move toward the Final RMP/EIS.”  
The Miles City draft plan also addresses the conservation needs of the Greater Sage Grouse as part of the joint BLM - U.S. Forest Service national effort to sustain the species and its habitat through multiple land management plans across 10 western states.  
After the comment period ends on June 5, 2013 a proposed Final RMP/EIS will be issued in late summer 2014.  That will be followed by the final step in the process, issuing a Record of Decision (ROD).  Until the Final RMP/EIS ROD is signed, the Miles City Field Office will continue to manage public land resources under the 1996 Big Dry and 1985 Powder River RMPs.
For more information, contact Planning Specialist Mary Bloom at (406) 233-2800.  For the latest BLM news and updates visit us on the web at: www.blm.gov/mt 

Published April 13, 2013

Article Type: 
News

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