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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT NEWS RELEASE
Butte Field Office
 
Release Date: 05/22/09
Contacts: David Abrams 406-533-7617    

BLM Releases Approved Plan for Butte Field Office


The Bureau of Land Management released the Record of Decision and Approved Resource Management Plan for the Butte Field Office May 22. The plan provides guidance for management of about 307,000 acres of public land and about 661,000 acres of federal mineral estate lands administered by the BLM Butte Field Office in Beaverhead, Broadwater, Deer Lodge, Gallatin, Jefferson, Lewis and Clark, Park, and Silver Bow counties.

“The Resource Management Plan is a comprehensive land-use plan which our Butte Field Office will use as it manages the BLM public lands in its jurisdiction,” said BLM State Director Gene Terland. “It’s a touchstone document which describes, in detail, how we will maintain, improve, or restore our natural resources in southwest Montana. A lot of time and hard work went into this RMP and everyone involved should be commended.”

The planning process for the Approved RMP addressed the following five major issues: 

  • How will vegetation on BLM lands be managed to achieve healthy ecosystems while providing for a broad range of multiple uses? 
  • How will BLM lands be managed to provide wildlife and fish habitat, and to conserve and recover special status and priority species?   
  • How should BLM manage motorized public travel to meet the needs of public access and resource uses while minimizing user conflicts and impacts to air, soil, watershed, vegetation, wildlife, and other resource values?
  • How should recreation be managed to accommodate the full range of recreational uses enjoyed by the public on BLM lands?
  • Which areas, if any, should be managed as special designations? 

The Approved RMP provides management direction and objectives to address the five major issues, as well as for all other resource and resource-use programs in the Butte Field Office. The plan also includes closure of approximately 200 miles of roads to eliminate “redundant” roads (roads spaced closely together on the land that essentially access the same areas), minimize user conflicts, and protect resource values. 

“We appreciate the public interest and involvement we have received in developing the RMP. We look forward to working with the public in implementing the plan”, said Rick Hotaling, Field Manager for the Butte Field Office. 

 The Approved RMP was prepared under the authorities of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 and the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969. All decisions covered by the Record of Decision are either land-use planning decisions that were protestable under the planning regulations (43 CFR, part 1610), or implementation decisions that are now appealable.

Site-specific travel route decisions for the Helena Travel Planning Area (TPA), East Helena TPA, Lewis and Clark County NW TPA, Boulder/Jefferson City TPA, and Upper Big Hole River TPA are now subject to appeal.   Anyone adversely affected by site-specific travel route decisions in these five areas may appeal in accordance with the provisions of 43 CFR, Part 4, Subpart E. Written appeals need to be specific (must pertain to certain roads within the five TPAs); must include a statement of reasons or a separate statement of reasons must be filed within 30 days of filing the appeal; and must detail how the appellant is adversely impacted. The appeal must be filed no later than June 22.

Further information on the appeal process is contained in the Record of Decision. Copies of the ROD and Approved RMP are available upon request from the Field Manager, Butte Field Office, Bureau of Land Management, 106 North Parkmont, Butte, MT 59701-3388 or at www.blm.gov/mt/st/en/fo/butte_field_office.html.

For more information, contact Tim LaMarr, Project Manager, at (406) 533-7645.



The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM's mission is to manage and conserve the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations under our mandate of multiple-use and sustained yield. In Fiscal Year 2013, the BLM generated $4.7 billion in receipts from public lands.
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Butte Field Office   106 N. Parkmont      Butte, MT 59702   

Last updated: 06-28-2012