COLORADO- BLM Extends Public Comment Period On Draft Dominguez-Escalante NCA Plan

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August 19, 2013 10:00 PM

COLORADO- BLM Extends Public Comment Period On Draft Dominguez-Escalante NCA Plan

Dear BRC Action Alert Subscriber,

Western Colorado OHV enthusiasts are pleased that the Bureau of Land Management has announced it will extend the public comment period on the on the Draft Resource Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement for the Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area (NCA) and the Dominguez Canyon Wilderness through Sept. 23.

However, we don't want the needed extension to slow our momentum.

This Draft Plan has rubbed OHV users raw. Especially after the local OHV community didn't actively oppose the establishment of either the NCA or the Wilderness. Recreationists were assured a "fair shake" in the NCA planning process, and OHV users were even included on a citizen advisory group.

That didn't stop the BLM from formulating a "range" of alternatives that all drastically reduced recreational uses, even though recreation is one of the "management values" Congress identified in the legislation establishing the NCA.

OHV users from across the region, including COHVCO, the Western Slope ATV Association and others, are looking at this plan with a very critical eye. BRC is also worried that the plan sets a very bad precedent for future land use designations.

We've posted the BLM's announcement below. In the meantime, please keep an eye on your inbox. We should have additional information about this key issue out soon.

Thanks in advance and, as always, if you have any questions or concerns, please contact BRC.

Brian Hawthorne                                                         Ric Foster
Public Lands Policy Director                                      Public Lands Department Manager
BlueRibbon Coalition                                                  BlueRibbon Coalition
208-237-1008 ext 102                                                208-237-1008 ext 107


BLM Extends Public Comment Period On Draft Dominguez-Escalante NCA Plan

The Bureau of Land Management announced today it will extend the public comment period on the on the Draft Resource Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement for the Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area and the Dominguez Canyon Wilderness through Sept. 23.

The plan will provide a framework to guide subsequent management decisions on approximately 210,000 acres administered by the BLM in Delta, Mesa and Montrose counties of western Colorado.

The Draft RMP analyzes five alternatives covering all aspects of BLM resource management within the National Conservation Area boundaries, including recreation, travel management, resource protection, wildlife habitat, special designations and livestock grazing. The National Conservation Area and Wilderness were designated by Congress in 2009 in recognition of their unique and important resources and values.
The 90-day public comment period was set to close Aug. 22. In response to requests from the Delta and Mesa county commissions and others, BLM will extend the comment period another 30 days.

"We want to ensure the public has enough time to provide specific comments to BLM and our Dominguez-Escalante advisory council about this plan," said Collin Ewing, manager of the Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area. "These documents cover all aspects of our management of this special area, so this is a really important opportunity to make your voice heard about how the BLM will manage these lands."

The BLM will use the public comments to help develop a Proposed RMP/Final EIS, which is scheduled for release in 2013.

For additional information, including how to provide comments or obtain a copy of the Draft RMP, visit http://www.blm.gov/co/st/en/nca/denca/denca_rmp.html.

Before including address, phone number, email-address, or any other personal identifying information in your comments, be advised that your entire comment, including personal identifying information, may be made publicly available at any time. While individuals may request that the BLM withhold personal identifying information from public view, the BLM cannot guarantee it will be able to do so. If you wish us to withhold your personal information you must state this prominently at the beginning of your comment. We will make all submissions from organizations or businesses, available for public disclosure in their entirety.

 

The BlueRibbon Coalition is a national recreation group that champions responsible recreation, and encourages individual environmental stewardship. With members in all 50 states, BRC is focused on building enthusiast involvement with organizational efforts through membership, outreach, education, and collaboration among recreationists. 1-800-BlueRib - www.sharetrails.org
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