[Federal Register: September 7, 1999 (Volume 64, Number 172)]
[Page 48665-48666]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Intent To Prepare Comprehensive Conservation Plans for Lower 
Suwannee National Wildlife Refuge, Florida and Cedar Keys National 
Wildlife Refuge, Florida

ACTION: Notice of intent to prepare Comprehensive Conservation Plans 
for Lower Suwannee National Wildlife Refuge in Dixie and Levy Counties, 
Florida, and Cedar Keys National Wildlife Refuge in Levy County, 
Florida, and notice of meeting seek public participation.


SUMMARY: This notice advises the public that Fish and Wildlife Service, 
Southeast Region, intends to gather information necessary to prepare a 
comprehensive conservation plan and an environmental document 
(environmental assessment) for both Lower Suwannee National Wildlife 
Refuge in Dixie and Levy Counties, Florida, and Cedar Keys National 
Wildlife Refuge in Levy County, Florida. The Service is furnishing this 
notice in compliance with Service comprehensive conservation plan 
policy and the National Environmental Policy Act and implementing 
regulations to achieve the following:
    (1) Advise other agencies and the public of our intentions, and
    (2) Obtain suggestions and information on the scope of issues, 
opportunities, and concerns for inclusion in the environmental 

DATES: The Service will hold a public scoping meeting on Tuesday, 
September 21, 1999, from 7 p.m.-9 p.m. at the Tommy Usher Center in 
Chiefland, Florida. A second public meeting will be held to review the 
draft comprehensive conservation plans. It is anticipated that the 
drafts will be available for public review by June 2000. An 
announcement of the meeting will appear in the Federal Register.

ADDRESSES: Address comments and requests for more information to: 
Refuge Manager, Lower Suwannee National Wildlife Refuge, 16450 NW 31st 
Place, Chiefland, Florida 32626-4874.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: It is the policy of the Fish and Wildlife 
Service to have all lands within the National Wildlife Refuge System 
managed in accordance with an approved comprehensive conservation plan. 
The plan guides management decisions and identifies refuge goals, 
objectives, and strategies for achieving refuge purposes. Public input 
into this planning process is encouraged. The plan will provide other 
agencies and the public with a clear understanding of the desired 
conditions of the refuge and how the Service will implement management 
strategies. Some of the issues to be addressed in the plan include the 
    (a) Public use management;
    (b) Habitat management;
    (c) Wildlife population management; and
    (d) Cultural resource identification and protection.
    Alternatives that address the issues and management strategies 

[[Page 48666]]

with these topics will be included in the environmental documents. A 
separate plan will be prepared for each refuge.
    The Lower Suwannee National Wildlife Refuge was established on 
April 10, 1979, under the authority of the Fish and Wildlife Act to 
protect the lower Suwannee River ecosystem. The 52,935-acre refuge, 
which is predominantly wetlands, is bisected by 20 miles of Stephen 
Foster's famous Suwannee River and includes 26 miles of the Gulf Coast.
    The Cedar Keys National Wildlife Refuge was established by 
Executive Order 5158 on July 16, 1929, as a breeding ground for 
migratory birds. The refuge supports one of the largest nesting 
colonies of pelicans, herons, egrets and ibis in north Florida, and 
consists of 12 islands ranging in size from 1 to 120 acres.

    Dated: August 20, 1999.
H. Dale Hall,
Acting Regional Director.
[FR Doc. 99-23199 Filed 9-3-99; 8:45 am]