[Federal Register: September 6, 2000 (Volume 65, Number 173)]
[Proposed Rules]               
[Page 53974-53975]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

50 CFR Part 17

RIN 1018-AF45

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Reopening of 
Comment Period and Notice of Public Hearing on the Clarification of 
Take Prohibitions for Coastal Cutthroat Trout Related to the Proposed 
Rule To List the Southwestern Washington/Columbia River Coastal 
Cutthroat Trout in Washington and Oregon as Threatened

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Proposed rule; reopening of comment period and notice of public 


SUMMARY: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) gives notice of a 
public hearing on the clarification of take prohibitions for the 
coastal cutthroat trout related to the proposed rule to list the 
southwestern Washington/Columbia River coastal cutthroat trout in 
Washington and Oregon. In addition, the comment period which originally 
closed on August 14, 2000 (65 FR 43730), will be reopened. The new 
comment period and hearing will allow all interested parties to submit 
oral or written comments on the proposal.

DATES: The comment period for this proposal now closes on September 29, 
2000. Any comments received by the closing date will be considered in 
the final decision on this proposal. The public hearing will be held 
from 1 p.m. until 3 p.m. and from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m. on September 21, 
2000, in Aberdeen, Washington.

ADDRESSES: The public hearing will be held in Building 800 at Grays 
Harbor College, 1620 Edward P. Smith Drive, Aberdeen, Washington.
    Written comments and materials can be sent to Kemper McMaster, 
State Supervisor, Oregon Fish and Wildlife Office, U.S. Fish and 
Wildlife Service, 2600 SE 98th Avenue, Suite 100, Portland, Oregon 
    You may also send comments by e-mail to: coastal_cutthroat@fws.gov. 
Please submit e-mail comments as an ASCII file and avoid the use of 
special characters and any form of encryption. Please also include 
``Attn: [RIN number]'' and your name and return address in your e-mail 
message. If you do not receive a confirmation from the system that we 
have received your e-mail message, contact us directly by calling our 
Oregon Office at phone number 503-231-6179.
    All comments and materials received will be available for public 
inspection, by appointment, during normal business hours at the above 
Service address.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Kemper McMaster, at the above 
Portland, Oregon address, phone 503-231-6179, facsimile 503-231-6195.



    On April 5, 1999, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) and 
the Service published a notice in the Federal Register (64 FR 16397) 
proposing to list the coastal cutthroat trout (Oncorhynchus clarki 
clarki) population in southwestern Washington

[[Page 53975]]

and the Columbia River, excluding the Willamette River above Willamette 
Falls, as threatened pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as 
amended (Act). The Service published a notice in the Federal Register 
(65 FR 20123) on April 14, 2000, to extend the deadline from April 5, 
2000, to October 5, 2000 for the final action on the proposed rule to 
list this population in Washington and Oregon, and to provide a 30-day 
comment period. The 6-month extension was necessary to obtain and 
review new information needed to resolve substantial scientific 
disagreement about the status of this population. On July 14, 2000, the 
Service published a notice in the Federal Register (65 FR 43730) to 
clarify the take prohibitions for coastal cutthroat trout and provided 
for a 30-day public comment period. This notice was necessary to answer 
questions we had received regarding the application of the take 
prohibitions of section 9 of the Act to the potential listing of the 
coastal cutthroat trout as threatened.
    In response to a request for a public hearing during the public 
comment period for the clarification of the take prohibitions for 
coastal cutthroat trout, we will hold a public hearing on the date and 
at the address described in the DATES and ADDRESSES sections above.
    Anyone wishing to make an oral statement for the record is 
encouraged to provide a written copy of their statement and present it 
to the Service at the hearing. In the event there is a large 
attendance, the time allotted for oral statements may be limited. Oral 
and written statements receive equal consideration. There are no limits 
to the length of written comments presented at the hearing or mailed to 
the Service. Legal notices announcing the date, time, and location of 
the hearing will be published in newspapers concurrently with the 
Federal Register notice.
    Comments from the public are sought regarding the list of 
activities in the clarification of the take prohibitions for coastal 
cutthroat trout (65 FR 43730). We are also interested in comments 
regarding the accuracy of the listing proposal, especially regarding: 
(1) Biological or other relevant data concerning any threat to 
cutthroat trout; (2) The range, distribution, and population size of 
coastal cutthroat trout in southwestern Washington and the Columbia 
River; (3) Current or planned activities in the subject area and their 
possible impacts on the species; (4) Cutthroat trout escapement, 
particularly escapement data partitioned into natural and hatchery 
components; (5) The proportion of naturally reproducing fish that were 
reared as juveniles in a hatchery; (6) Homing and straying of natural 
and hatchery fish; (7) The reproductive success of naturally 
reproducing hatchery fish and their relationship to southwestern 
Washington and the Columbia River coastal cutthroat trout populations; 
and (8) Efforts being made to protect native, naturally reproducing 
populations of coastal cutthroat trout. Reopening of the comment period 
will enable us to respond to the request for a public hearing on the 
proposed action.
    The comment period on this proposal closes on September 29, 2000. 
Written comments should be submitted to the Service office listed in 
the ADDRESSES section.
    Author: The primary author of this notice is Scott Craig, U.S. Fish 
and Wildlife Service, Western Washington Office, 510 Desmond Dr. SE, 
Lacey, Washington, 98503.

    Authority: The authority for this action is the Endangered 
Species Act of 1973, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1531-1544).

    Dated: August 30, 2000.
Don Weathers,
Acting Regional Director, Region 1, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
[FR Doc. 00-22887 Filed 9-5-00; 8:45 am]