Angeles Volunteer Association

SOURCE:  Federal Register, April 11, 2007

National Park Service

Merced Wild and Scenic River Comprehensive Management Plan; 

Yosemite National Park, Mariposa and Madera Counties, CA; 
Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement

    Summary: Pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (Pub. L. 
91-190) and the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act (Pub. L. 90-542), the 
National Park Service is initiating public scoping for the conservation 
planning and environmental impact analysis process for a Merced Wild 
and Scenic River Comprehensive Management Plan (MRP) and Environmental 
Impact Statement (EIS) in Yosemite National Park. The MRP/EIS will be a 
comprehensive document that guides future management of the Merced 
River corridor, and will comply with all applicable legal requirements. 
The purpose of this scoping outreach is to solicit early public 
comments about issues and concerns that should be addressed in the 
plan, including a suitable range of alternatives, appropriate 
mitigation measures, and the nature and extent of potential 
environmental impacts.
    Background: In 1987, Congress designated 122 miles of the Merced 
River and its South Fork as Wild and Scenic, including the 81 miles 
within Yosemite National Park and the El Portal Administrative Site. 
The National Park Service (NPS) completed the Merced Wild and Scenic 
River Comprehensive Management Plan/Final Environmental Impact 
Statement in August, 2000. Soon after, two citizen's groups filed suit 
in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California. This 
initiated a series of court proceedings that culminated in a 2006 
District Court decision that invalidated the park's revised 2005 plan, 
the Merced Wild and Scenic River Revised Comprehensive Management Plan/
Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement. Subsequently, the court 
ordered the NPS to prepare a new comprehensive management plan. On 
January 9, 2007, the NPS proposed a 33-month timeline to the court for 
the preparation of the new MRP/EIS, which would result in a Record of 
Decision on September 30, 2009.
    Scoping and Public Meetings: The participation of interested 
individuals and organizations is important to the conservation planning 
and environmental impact analysis process. During the scoping phase, 
the public is invited to share ideas and concerns that should be 
considered in development of the draft MRP. Yosemite National Park will 
consult tribal, federal, state, and local governments, and will receive 
public input during an extended period concluding 60 days from the date 
of publication of this Notice in the Federal Register. The scoping 
period will be publicized via the internet, direct mailings, and press 
releases distributed to local and regional media. Dates, times, 
specific locations, and additional information will be available in 
regional and local news sources, and updates will be available at

    Written comments should be addressed to the Superintendent, Attn: 
Merced River Plan, Yosemite National Park, PO Box 577, Yosemite 
National Park, California 95389, or faxed to (209) 379-1294. All 
comments must be postmarked or faxed not later than 60 days from the 
publication date of this Notice in the Federal Register (or if sent via 
e-mail, transmitted by that date to 
Immediately upon confirmation of this date it will be announced on the 
project Web site and via announcements in local and regional press 
    Before including your address, phone number, e-mail address, or 
other personal identifying information in your comment, be advised that 
your entire comment--including your personal identifying information--
may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in 
your comment to withhold from public review your personal identifying 
information, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.
    Decision Process: Information about future public involvement 
opportunities, including workshops for preliminary alternatives 
formulation and the later public review of the draft EIS, will be 
publicized in regional news media, by mailings, and postings to the 
project's Web site. Following due consideration of comments received in 
response to the draft EIS, a final EIS will be prepared. As a delegated 
EIS the official responsible for approval of the MRP is the Regional 
Director, Pacific West Region (at this time a decision is anticipated 
during September, 2009). Subsequently the Superintendent, Yosemite 
National Park would be responsible for implementing the MRP.FR Doc E7-6832


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