For Immediate Release         Cass Cairns BLM 719-269-8553
February 26, 2009

BLM announces proposed decision record to amend resource management plan and an opportunity to protest

Cañon City, Colo. – The BLM has released a proposed Record of Decision (ROD) to amend the South Park Land Tenure designations in the 1996 Royal Gorge Resource Area Management Plan (RGRA-RMP).  The proposed ROD, South Park Land Tenure Adjustment Environmental Assessment (EA), and finding of no significant impact (FONSI) are available for public review and the public will have an opportunity to file a protest during a 30-day protest period that begins with the published legal notice in The Fairplay Flume and The Gazette on February 27, 2009 and ends on March 30, 2009.

There are three land tenure categories identified in the South Park Land Tenure Adjustment EA; (1) Disposal, (2) Retention, and (3) Restricted Exchange Lands.  Three draft alternatives (Alternatives A, B, and C) were originally developed and presented to the public for review and comment in late 2006 and early 2007.  Extensive public input, multi-agency consultation and improved GIS mapping techniques brought to light newly discovered resource values during this period that led to the development of a fourth alternative, Alternative D, which provides for a significantly higher percentage of retention of BLM lands than what is defined in the existing RGRA-RMP and more than what is defined in the draft Alternatives A, B, or C.  The Proposed ROD identifies Alternative D as the proposed action as it balances the protection of better understood important resource values with agency management costs and RGRA-RMP goals and objectives.

The BLM planning regulations (43 CFR 1610.5-2) state that any person who meets the conditions described in the regulations may protest the BLM’s proposed amendments to the RMP.  A person who meets the conditions and files a protest must file the protest within 30 days of the date the legal notice is published.  All protests must be in writing and submitted by either regular or overnight mail.

Regular Mailing Address:
Director (210)
Attention: Brenda Williams
P.O. Box 66538
Washington D.C. 20035  

Overnight Mailing Address:
Director (210)
Attention: Brenda Williams
1620 L. Street, N.W., Suite 1075
Washington D.C. 20036

Copies of the South Park Land Tenure EA, FONSI and proposed ROD are available for public inspection at the BLM RGFO, 3028 E. Main St., Cañon City, Colorado; the Fairplay Public Library, 418 Main St., Fairplay, Colorado; and various other Front Range public libraries.  For specific library names and locations or to view these documents online visit the South Park Land Tenure Web site at http://www.blm.gov/co/st/en/fo/rgfo/planning/south_park_land_tenure.html.  A copy of the complete protest procedures is also available at this Web site.  For further information contact Martin Weimer at 719-269-8553.


# # #