[Federal Register: July 31, 2000 (Volume 65, Number 147)]
[Page 46729]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Notice of Availability of the Draft Environmental Assessment and 
Land Protection Plan for the Proposed Establishment of Mountain 
Longleaf National Wildlife Refuge, Calhoun County, Alabama

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability of a draft environmental assessment and 
land protection plan for the proposed establishment of Mountain 
Longleaf National Wildlife Refuge in Calhoun County, Alabama.


SUMMARY: This notice advises the public that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife 
Service, Southeast Region, proposes to establish a new national 
wildlife refuge at Fort McClellan, a U.S. Army military base that was 
recently closed under the Base Realignment and Closure Act. The purpose 
of the proposed refuge is to protect, enhance, and manage a unique 
mountain longleaf pine ecosystem for the benefit of neotropical 
migratory birds and a diversity of native wildlife and plants, with 
special emphasis on the red-cockaded woodpecker and other endangered 
and threatened species. A Draft Environmental Assessment and Land 
Protection Plan for the establishment of the proposed refuge has been 
prepared by Service biologists in coordination with the U.S. Army, the 
Alabama Game and Fish Division, and The nature Conservancy. The 
assessment considers the biological, environmental, and socioeconomic 
effects of establishing the refuge and evaluates three alternative 
actions and their potential impacts on the environment. Written 
comments or recommendations concerning the proposal are welcomed and 
should be sent to address given below.

DATES: Land acquisition planning for the project is currently underway. 
The draft environmental assessment and land protection plan will be 
available to the public for review and comment on August 14, 2000. 
Written comments must be received no later than September 15, 2000, in 
order to be considered for the preparation of the final environmental 

ADDRESSES: If you wish to comment, you may submit your comments by any 
one of several methods. You may mail your comments to Mr. Charles R. 
Danner, Planning and Support Team, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 1875 
Century Boulevard, Suite 420, Atlanta, Georgia 30345. You may hand-
deliver your comments to Mr. Danner at the same address. Or you may 
submit your comments by telephone at 1-800-419-9582. Our practice is to 
make comments, including the names and addresses of respondents, 
available for public review during regular business hours. Individual 
respondents may request that we withhold their home address from the 
record, which we will honor to the extent allowable by law. There may 
also be circumstances in which we would withhold from the record a 
respondent's identity, as allowable by law. If you wish us to withhold 
your name and/or address, you must state this prominently at the 
beginning of your comment. However, we will not consider anonymous 
comments. We will make all submissions from organizations and 
businesses, and from individuals identifying themselves as 
representatives or officials of organizations and businesses, available 
for public inspection in their entirety.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The proposal would establish a new national 
wildlife refuge on up to 15,000 acres of land in Calhoun County, 
Alabama, through an interagency transfer from the United States Army. 
The Service is proposing to establish the refuge by accepting the 
Army's offer to transfer the project lands in fee title.
    The objectives of the proposed refuge are to (1) preserve and 
enhance the natural mountain longleaf pine ecosystem; (2) help 
perpetuate the neotropical migratory bird resource; (3) preserve a 
natural diversity and abundance of native fauna and flora, with special 
emphasis on the red-cockaded woodpecker and other endangered and 
threatened species; and (4) provide compatible, wildlife-dependent 
recreational opportunities such as hunting, fishing, wildlife 
observation and photography, and environmental education and 

    Dated: July 24, 2000.
Sam D. Hamilton,
Regional Director.
[FR Doc. 00-19214 Filed 7-28-00; 8:45 am]