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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT

Oregon / Washington

Vantage-Pomona Heights 230kV Transmission Line Project

Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the Vantage to Pomona Heights Transmission Line Project Available for Review

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) seeks public comment on the Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement (SDEIS) for the Vantage to Pomona Heights Transmission Line Project (Project) in Grant, Kittitas, Benton, and Yakima counties, Washington.

Pacific Power is proposing a new 230-kilovolt transmission line to provide more reliable power to the Yakima region. The new line would run from Pacific Power’s existing Pomona Heights Substation east of Selah, Washington, in Yakima County to Bonneville Power Administration’s existing Vantage Substation east of Wanapum Dam in Grant County, Washington.

As a result of comments received on the January 2013 Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) and changes made by the Western Electricity Coordinating Council regarding transmission line siting, managers of the BLM, Pacific Power, and U. S. Department of the Army Joint Base Lewis-McCord Yakima Training Center (JBLM YTC) met and identified a new northern route (NNR). The NNR is approximately 41 miles in length and is mostly parallel and north of an existing Pacific Power transmission line on the JBLM YTC.

In the SDEIS, the NNR Alternative is compared to the current Agency Preferred Route Alternative and the No Action Alternative as identified in the DEIS. The Final EIS will include the NNR Alternative and all the DEIS Alternatives.

The BLM is the lead federal agency for the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) review process for the Project. Cooperating Agencies that assisted in the preparation of the SDEIS are: JBLM YTC, Bureau of Reclamation, Bonneville Power Administration, Federal Highway Administration, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Washington Department of Natural Resources, Washington Department of Transportation, and Kittitas and Yakima counties.

Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) and Yakima County are the co-leads for the Washington State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) review process for the Project. WSDOT will serve as the nominal lead for the SEPA process and has the final responsibility for completion of all SEPA procedures and documentation. The BLM, WSDOT, and Yakima County will work to synchronize the state and federal environmental review processes. The SDEIS will be used to move in a unified direction for environmental review and analysis for both the SEPA and the NEPA. This unification will also be carried into the Final EIS.

Public Review Period

With publication of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Notice of Availability in the Federal Register on January 2, 2015, the SDEIS is released to the public for review and comment. The BLM is soliciting written comments on the SDEIS during the 45-day public comment period. The public comment period will close on Tuesday, February 17, 2015.

Comments must be postmarked no later than February 17, 2015, received electronically by 5:00 p.m. (PST) or hand-delivered at the address below by 4:00 p.m. (PST).

The SDEIS is available for review in the Documents section below.

The January 2013 DEIS is also available in the Documents section below.

Ways to Submit Comments

Comments can be submitted in any of the following ways:

  • Online at: http://www.blm.gov/or/districts/spokane/plans/vph230.php.
  • By email to: blm_or_vantage_pomona@blm.gov (please specify Vantage to Pomona Heights Supplemental Draft EIS in the subject line).
  • By mail to: Spokane District, Records Manager, 1103 North Fancher Road, Spokane, Washington, 99212, Attn: Vantage to Pomona Heights Supplemental Draft EIS.
  • By fax: 509-536-1275, Attn: Vantage to Pomona Heights Supplemental Draft EIS Project Manager.
  • Written comments may also be hand delivered to the BLM Wenatchee Field Office, 915 Walla Walla Avenue, Wenatchee, Washington 98801-1521, between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, but excluding federal holidays.

Comments on the SDEIS should be as specific as possible. It would be helpful if comments referred to chapters and/or sections of the SDEIS.

For all comments submitted, please identify whether you are submitting them as an individual or as the designated spokesperson on behalf of an organization. All comment submittals must include the commenter’s name and address. However, before including your address, phone number, e-mail address, or other Personally Identifiable Information (PII) in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment, including your personal information, may be made publically available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

Public Meetings

The BLM will host two public meetings to provide information about the Project and accept public comments on the SDEIS.

  • January 28, 2015, 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Sagebrush Senior Center, 441 Desert Aire Drive SW, Mattawa, Washington 99349
  • January 29, 2015, 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Selah Civic Center, 216 S. 1st Street, Selah, Washington 98942

Following the 45-day public comment period, the BLM will analyze the comments and prepare a Final EIS, targeted for release in the summer of 2015.

Documents

Gaining access to the SDEIS is described below. If you have difficulty viewing the document or cannot download the PDFs, you may request a CD by calling the BLM Wenatchee Field Office at 509-665-2100 or via mail at: BLM Wenatchee Field Office, Attn: Vantage to Pomona Heights Supplemental Draft EIS, 915 Walla Walla Avenue, Wenatchee, Washington 98801-1521. Hardcopies are available at the following locations:

  • Mattawa Community Library, 101 Manson Lane, Mattawa, Washington, 509-932-5507
  • Terrace Heights Library, 4011 Commonwealth Rd., Yakima, Washington, 509-457-5319
  • Yakima County Public Services Dept., Planning Division; 128 North Second St., Fourth Floor, Courthouse, Yakima Washington, 509-574-2300
  • Washington Department of Transportation, South Central Region Office; 2809 Rudkin Road, Union Gap, Washington, 509-577-1600
  • Bureau of Land Management, Wenatchee Field Office, 915 Walla Walla Ave, Wenatchee, Washington, 509-665-2100
  • Bureau of Land Management, Spokane District Office, 1103 N. Fancher Rd., Spokane Valley, Washington, 509-536-1200

Online Comments

Before including address, phone number, email-address, or any other personal identifying information in your comments, be advised that your entire comment, including personal identifying information, may be made publicly available at any time. While individuals may request that the BLM withhold Personally Identifiable Information (PII) from public view, the BLM cannot guarantee it will be able to do so. If you wish for us to withhold your personal information you must state this prominently at the beginning of your comment. We will make all submissions from organizations or businesses, available for public disclosure in their entirety.

Note: All information submitted by this form will be handled according to the BLM's privacy policy.

Please click on the link below (please specify Vantage to Pomona Heights Supplemental Draft EIS in the subject line) to submit your comments on the Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement (SDEIS). Thank you for reviewing the SDEIS and we look forward to your comments.