During its initial internal planning sessions, the BLM's Winnemucca District Office staff developed the Preliminary Draft Planning Criteria listed below. Planning criteria provide a framework within which guidelines and standards can be developed for the planning process. They also help to define the scope of the process and to estimate the extent of data collection and analysis required. The following preliminary planning criteria are being considered during development of the RMP:
- Compliance with the Federal Land Policy and Management Act (FLPMA) and all other applicable laws, regulations, and policies. Decisions in the plan will be consistent with the existing plans and policies of adjacent local, state, tribal, and federal agencies to the extent allowed by federal law, regulations, and policy.
- Impacts of the RMP will be analyzed in an environmental impact statement (EIS) developed in accordance with regulations at 43 CFR 1610 and 40 CFR 1500 and the Departmental Manual 516 DM 1-8. The scope of analysis will be consistent with the level of analysis in approved plans and in accordance with BLM standards and program guidance.
- The RMP will recognize the state's responsibility to manage wildlife and water.
- The RMP will recognize valid existing rights.
- Lands covered in the RMP will be public surface and split estate lands managed by BLM. No decisions will be made in the RMP relating to the management of lands not administered by the BLM.
- RMP development will include government-to-government consultation with Native American Indian Tribes in conformance with the requirements of Section 202(c)(9) of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act, Section 101(d)(6) of the National Historic Preservation Act, the American Indian Religious Freedom Act, Treaty Rights where applicable, Executive Order 13007 (Indian Sacred Sites), Executive Order 12898 (Environmental Justice), BLM Handbook H-8160-1, BLM Nevada Instruction Memorandum NV-2005-008, and other applicable laws, regulations and policies.
- The RMP will be developed cooperatively and collaboratively with the State of Nevada , tribal governments, county and municipal governments, other federal agencies, the Sierra Front-Northwestern Great Basin Resource Advisory Council, and other interested groups, agencies and individuals.
- The RMP will incorporate standards and guidelines developed in accordance with regulations in 43 CFR Subpart 4180 and approved by the Secretary of the Interior and incorporate valid and relevant management decisions from previous BLM plans.
- Minerals management will be consistent with FLPMA and with the Mining and Minerals Policy Act of 1970, the National Materials and Minerals Policy, Research and Development Act of 1980, the 3600 and 3800 regulations.
- Determinations for mineral development will be based on mineral, geothermal, and oil and gas potential within the planning area. Reasonable foreseeable development scenarios for fluid minerals will be developed in accordance with BLM Handbook H-1624-1.
- Soil/vegetation correlations, maps, and the included information from Natural Resource Conservation Service Soil Surveys and range site descriptions will be used for evaluating ecological condition and the fundamentals of rangeland health in uplands.
- Existing ecological site inventories will be used to establish current vegetation conditions.
- Fire Management objectives will be consistent with the current WFO Fire Management Plan, the 2001 Federal Wildland Fire Policy, the National Fire Plan, Healthy Forest Restoration Act, and other policies.
- The RMP/EIS will be consistent with Homeland Security policies.
- All proposed management actions will be based on current scientific information, research and technology, and on inventory and monitoring information.
- The RMP will recognize lifestyles and concerns of area residents and stakeholders. Analysis of economic matters will comply with established acceptable standards and environmental justice factors will be considered using analytical parameters recommended by the EPA Environmental Justice Guidelines (April 1998).
- Lands identified for disposal prior to July 25, 2000, will be identified for disposal under the Federal Land Transaction Facilitation Act.
- Lands identified for acquisition will be consistent with FLPMA Section 205, existing policy and regulation and, when applicable, with the Southern Nevada Public Lands Management Act.
While planning issues drive the Resource Management Plan, many other basic environmental and management issues are also addressed to provide comprehensive management guidance for all resources and to satisfy legal requirements. The BLM has identified the following preliminary Planning Issue themes:
- Fire Management
- Historic, Cultural, and Paleontologic Resources/Traditional Values
- Land Tenure
- Livestock Grazing
- Planning/RMP Process
- Social and Economic Concerns
- Soil/Water/Air/Visual Resources
- Vegetation/Noxious Weeds
- Wild Horses and Burros
- Special Designations
- Wildlife/Sensitive Species
During the public scoping period the BLM sought the public's feedback on the preliminary Planning Issues and Planning Criteria. Following the formal scoping period that ended May 24, 2005, the BLM interdisciplinary team reviewed the comments and prepared a Scoping Summary Report that addressed the key issues raised during scoping and how the BLM would incorporate these comments into the RMP. The public's comments were then considered in the management alternatives formulation and environmental evaluation.
Although the offical scoping period has ended, the BLM invites the public to participate by continuing to provide comments throughout the RMP planning process. Please open and print the mail-in or fax-in Public Comment Form (see contact information for mailing address and fax number). You also may e-mail your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your name and mailing address in your e-mail (see privacy notice). Comments are welcomed, reviewed, and considered in the planning process on a continuing basis.
Public comments submitted for this planning review, including names and street addresses of respondents, will be available for public review at the Winnemucca Field Office, 5100 E. Winnemucca Blvd., Winnemucca, NV 89445, during regular business hours (7:30 am to 4:30 pm), Monday through Friday, except holidays. Individual respondents may request confidentiality. If you wish to withhold your name or address from public review or from disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act, you must state this prominently in your written comments. Such requests will be honored to the extent allowed by law. All submissions from organizations or businesses, and from individuals identifying themselves as representatives or officials of organizations or businesses, will be made available for public inspection in their entirety.