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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT NEWS RELEASE
Central California District
 
Release Date: 03/28/13
Contacts: David Christy (916) 941-3146    
  George Hill (831) 630-5036    
News Release No. CA-CC-13-41

BLM Releases Clear Creek Proposed Plan Friday


The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Hollister Field Office will release a Proposed Resource Management Plan and Final Environmental Impact Statement Friday for the 63,000-acre Clear Creek Management Area in southern San Benito and western Fresno Counties.

Under the proposed Resource Management Plan (RMP), off-highway vehicle use would not be authorized in the Serpentine Area of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC). However, limited motorized entry would be allowed within the ACEC to provide access to key areas of interest for non-motorized recreation. Vehicle touring in the ACEC would be limited to a 32-mile scenic route loop. Access into the ACEC would be authorized by permit only, with vehicle touring limited to less than five days per year and pedestrian activity limited to less than 12 days per year.

"The release of this proposed RMP is a big step in opening the area to public use," said Rick Cooper, BLM Hollister Field Office Manager, of the area, which has been closed since 2008 because of health risks posed by naturally occurring asbestos.

The BLM has also included adaptive management criteria in the proposed RMP allowing the BLM to periodically reassess land use plan decisions if significant new information on human health risks from exposure to airborne asbestos fibers becomes available.

A 30-day protest period on the proposed RMP/Final EIS runs from April 5 through May 6. During this period, any person who participated in the planning process and believes they may be adversely affected by approval of the plan may submit a protest. A final decision on the RMP will not be issued until protests are resolved. Procedures for filing protests are available at the website:

http://www.blm.gov/wo/st/en/prog/planning/protest_resolution.html

Approximately 30,000 acres of the Clear Creek Management Area (CCMA) contain serpentine soils. Serpentine, a greenish rock, can contain asbestos fibers. The Clear Creek Serpentine ACEC contains asbestos that is above the Environmental Protection Agency’s acceptable risk range for exposure to carcinogens. Portions of the CCMA and the ACEC have been temporarily closed since May 1, 2008, to protect persons, property and public land resources while the RMP was developed.

The Proposed RMP/Final EIS is available on-line for public review at the Hollister Field Office webpage: http://www.blm.gov/ca/st/en/fo/hollister/clear_creek_management_area/CCMA_RMP.html.

Compact disks of the document are available by request from the Hollister Field Office Bureau of Land Management, 20 Hamilton Court, Hollister, CA 95023. For additional information contact the Hollister Field Office at (831) 630-5000.




--BLM--

Central California District   2800 Cottage Way, Sacramento, CA 95825  

Last updated: 03-28-2013