[Federal Register: September 23, 2004 (Volume 69, Number 184)]
[Page 57078-57079]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Notice of Availability of Final Comprehensive Conservation Plan 
and Environmental Assessment for Illinois River National Wildlife and 
Fish Refuge (NWFR), Havana, IL

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability.


SUMMARY: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) announces that 
the final Comprehensive Conservation Plan (CCP) and Environmental 
Assessment (EA) are available for the Illinois River NWFR, Havana, 
Illinois. The CCP and EA were prepared pursuant to the National 
Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act of 1966, as amended by the 
National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997, and the 
National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 and describe how the Service 
intends to manage the refuge over the next 15 years.

ADDRESSES: Copies of the final CCP and EA are available on compact 
diskette or hard copy; you may obtain a copy by writing to: Illinois 
River National

[[Page 57079]]

Wildlife and Fish Refuge Complex, 19031 East County Road 2105 North, 
Havana, Illinois 62644. You may also access or download copies at the 
following Web site address: http://midwest.fws.gov/planning/IllinoisRiver/index.html

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ross Adams at (309) 535-2290.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The National Wildlife Refuge System 
Administration Act of 1966, as amended by the National Wildlife Refuge 
System Improvement Act of 1997 (16 U.S.C. 668dd-668ee et seq.), 
requires a CCP. The purpose in developing CCPs is to provide refuge 
managers with a 15-year strategy for achieving refuge purposes and 
contributing toward the mission of the National Wildlife Refuge System, 
consistent with sound principles of fish and wildlife science, 
conservation, legal mandates, and Service policies. In addition to 
outlining broad management direction on conserving wildlife and their 
habitats, the CCPs identify wildlife-dependent recreational 
opportunities available to the public, including opportunities for 
hunting, fishing, wildlife observation and photography, and 
environmental education and interpretation. We will review and update 
these CCPs at least every 15 years in accordance with the National 
Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act of 1966, as amended by the 
National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997, and the 
National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321-4370d).
    The Illinois River NWFR Complex includes three national wildlife 
refuges in Illinois: Chautauqua NWR in Mason and Marshal Counties; 
Meredosia NWR in Cass and Morgan Counties; and Emiquon NWR in Fulton 
County. The planning process began in 1998.
    Three management alternatives were considered. Alternative 3, 
Refuge Resource Area Focus, is the selected alternative. This 
alternative would increase conservation efforts in the Illinois River 
Focus Areas and enhance, protect and restore fish and wildlife habitat 
within the boundaries of the Illinois River Refuges. There will be no 
expansion of existing authorized boundaries. We propose to complete 
land acquisition within the currently approved boundaries of Emiquon 
NWR and Meredosia NWR on a willing-seller basis as funding allows. We 
also propose to use voluntary partnerships to conserve grassland, 
savanna, and native forests within five focus areas. The Chatauqua NWR 
auto-tour route will be expanded. Hunting will be expanded by allowing 
big game hunting on Liverpool Lake and Meredosia Island. The east side 
of Lake Chautauqua will be open to bank fishing year-round, and two 
accessible bank fishing facilities will be provided on the Chautauqua 
NWR Upper Pool and Meredosia NWR. Facility improvements proposed 
include restroom facilities at the headquarters that will accommodate 
larger groups, converting the headquarters maintenance shop to a 
visitor contact station, and developing interpretive signage for the 
auto tour.

    Dated: May 27, 2004.
Charles M. Wooley,
Acting Regional Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Ft. Snelling, 
[FR Doc. 04-21373 Filed 9-22-04; 8:45 am]