BLM and USDA Forest Service begin new land use planning process for Bears Ears National Monument
Agencies commencing 60-day public comment period on planning process.
MONTICELLO, Utah — The Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service are seeking public input to help inform a new land use plan for Bears Ears National Monument, which will protect the Monument’s cultural, physical, social, biological, historic, and scientific objects and values consistent with Presidential Proclamation 10285. The monument is managed jointly by the BLM and the Forest Service, with the expertise and traditional and historical guidance of Tribal Nations through the Bears Ears Commission. The Notice of Intent will publish in the Federal Register on Aug. 30; view the Federal Register submission HERE.
“This new management planning process provides an opportunity to learn from our past planning efforts and ensure the 1.36 million-acres of public lands in the Monument receive the proper protections,” said BLM Utah State Director Greg Sheehan. “The new Presidential Proclamation provides a framework for managing the Monument, but the public can help us determine the best way to implement it. Input at this stage will help inform the issues considered during the planning process and the decisions made in the final management plan.”
The comment period will provide the public with an important opportunity to help with the monument planning process, and the agencies welcome public input to identify critical management concerns to determine the scope of the environmental analysis, including issues for analysis and alternatives development. Future public scoping meetings will also provide an opportunity to speak with resource specialists and to submit written comments.
The dates and locations of public scoping meetings will be announced at least 15 days in advance through local media, social media, and the BLM website at: https://www.blm.gov/utah. The agencies welcome the public to submit written comments concerning the scope of the analysis, potential alternatives, identification of relevant information and studies, and nomination of areas of critical environmental concern. To provide the agencies the opportunity to consider issues and areas of critical environmental concern raised by commentors in the Draft Resource Management Plan/Environmental Impact Statement, input must be received by Oct. 31, 2022 or 15 days after the last public meeting, whichever is later.
Written comments may be submitted through the following methods:
- Website: https://eplanning.blm.gov/eplanning-ui/project/2020347/510
(the ability to comment feature will go live on Aug. 30, once the Federal Register Notice publishes)
- Mail: ATTN: Bears Ears National Monument Planning, 365 North Main, Monticello, UT 84535
Before including an address, phone number, email address, or other personally identifiable information in any comments, be aware that the entire comment — including personal identifying information — may be made publicly available at any time. Requests to withhold personal identifying information from public review can be submitted, but the BLM cannot guarantee that it will be able to do so.
The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.