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BLM seeks public input on renewal of La Pine-area grazing allotments

BLM

PRINEVILLE, Ore. (KTVZ) — The Bureau of Land Management Deschutes Field Office is seeking public comment on a proposal to renew grazing permits for five allotments near La Pine.

Public input will help to inform an environmental assessment (EA) focused on the La Pine Grazing Allotments Renewal Project. The 30-day public scoping period started Thursday and ends August 15, 2022.  

The purpose of the EA is to comply with National Environmental Policy Act regulations, consider the renewal of the grazing permits, analyze actions that would make progress towards meeting Rangeland Health Standards (BLM, 2001), and ensure conformance with the Upper Deschutes Record of Decision and Resource Management Plan (2005).

The BLM must complete the EA process before authorizing grazing permit renewals due to the presence of the Federally threatened Oregon spotted frog within riparian areas in occupied allotments. The allotments are a mix of BLM-administered public lands and private land. 

Scoping activities identify reasonable alternatives to be evaluated in the EA that meet the purpose and need of the project. The EA will disclose to the public the potential environmental consequences of renewing the grazing permits and alternative(s), identify all practical means to avoid or minimize environmental harm from the renewals and alternatives, and provide the responsible official with information upon which to make an informed decision regarding the grazing permit renewals. 

Oregon spotted frog and their critical habitat are issues that will be analyzed in the EA. To better manage for the Oregon spotted frog and ensure progress towards Rangeland Health Standards, the BLM is considering range improvements, changes to the timing of grazing, meadow restoration, lodge pole pine removal, and fuels reduction activities. In addition, the BLM will consider a No Action Alternative that would consist of re-issuing the current permits with no changes. 

Interested members of the public, local governments, Tribal members, organizations, and other stakeholders are encouraged to provide comments during this public scoping period to help identify alternatives, refine the proposed action, clarify issues, and identify new issues.   

All comments must be submitted by 4:30 p.m. on August 15, 2022, to be considered. Written comments will be accepted at the address below or can be emailed to blm_or_pr_lapinegrazingproject@blm.gov. Please refer to Project Number: DOI-BLM-ORWA-P060-2022-0016-EA. 

Deschutes Field Office
Deschutes Field Manager
3050 NE 3rd Street 491
Prineville, OR 97754  

Please be aware that your entire comment, including your personal identifying information, may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, it is not guaranteed.    

For additional information, please contact Ferris Couture, Planning and Environmental Coordinator at (541) 416-6711. Persons who use a telecommunications device for the deaf may call the Federal Relay Service (FRS) at 1-800-877-8339 to leave a message or question for the above individual. The FRS is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Replies are provided during normal business hours. 

Article Topic Follows: La Pine

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