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News Release

For Release: August 31, 2006
Contact: David Christy (916) 985-4474

BLM Approves Lease for Yuba Goldfields Training Center

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has issued a decision approving a 20-year lease of 57 acres of public lands in the Yuba Goldfields in western Yuba County to the Operating Engineers Local Union No. 3 Joint Apprenticeship Training Committee (JATC) to establish a heavy equipment operator training center.

The Yuba Goldfields is a 9,700-acre area containing substantial deposits of sand and gravel washed down from hydraulic mining activities upstream during the late 1800s.

BLM Folsom Field Manager Bill Haigh said the proposal involves an apprenticeship training center for heavy equipment operators, consisting of several stationary buildings, portable trailers, and other administrative facilities. The center will provide eight permanent jobs and training opportunities in six-week classes for 20 students at a time. The center will serve hundreds of operators living in the region, and bring substantial revenues into the county. The Yuba County Board of Supervisors passed official resolutions supporting the proposed facility.

Haigh said the proposal has undergone extensive environmental and public review since being presented to BLM in September 2004. A public meeting was held in Marysville in October 2005 and public comments accepted through the end of June 2006.

In the final environmental assessment and decision record issued today, BLM determined the proposal would have no significant environmental impact in the area, already heavily disturbed by previous mining activity, and that use of the lands for the training center is appropriate. Haigh added that although the JATC requested a 40-year lease term, BLM determined a 20-year lease better matches the agency's land use planning frequency on public lands in California.

The BLM documents are available online at www.blm.gov/ca/folsom. As described in the decision record, adversely affected parties have the right to appeal BLM's decision to the Interior Board of Land Appeals in Arlington, Virginia. For further information, call BLM at (916) 985-4474.


Folsom Field Office, 63 Natoma Street, Folsom, CA 95630

Last updated: 06-25-2007