PUBLIC NOTICE Opportunity to Comment on High Knob Tower Viewshed and Habitat Improvement Project.

December 06, 2019

PUBLIC NOTICE

Opportunity to Comment on High Knob Tower Viewshed and Habitat Improvement Project. The George Washington and Jefferson National Forests, Clinch Ranger District, has prepared a preliminary environmental assessment (EA) for the High Knob Tower Viewshed and Habitat Improvement Project. The project proposes a series of actions to expand suitable pollinator habitat acreage adjacent to the High Knob Observation Tower and to maintain and enhance the scenic view.

A complete description of the proposal and the preliminary EA are available on-line at:

https://www.fs.usda.gov/

project/?project=55877

The preliminary EA and supporting documentation is also available for review at the Clinch Ranger District. Additional information regarding this action can be obtained from: Chuck Lane, Project Leader, at (276) 679- 8370 x246 or by email at

charles.lane@usda.gov

The proposed project is an activity implementing a land management plan not authorized under the HFRA and is subject to 36 CFR 218 Subparts A and B.

How to Comment and Timeframe

Specific written comments (§218.2) on the proposed project will be accepted for 30 calendar days following publication of this notice in The Coalfield Progress. If the comment period ends on a Saturday, Sunday, or Federal holiday, comments will be accepted until the end of the next Federal working day. The publication date in the newspaper of record is the exclusive means for calculating the comment period. Those wishing to comment should not rely upon dates or timeframe information provided by any other source.

Only individuals or entities (as defined by 36 CFR 218.2) who submit timely and specific written comments (as defined by 36 CFR 218.2) about this proposed project or activity during this or another public comment period established by the Responsible Official will be eligible to file an objection. Other requirements to be eligible to submit an objection are defined by 36 CFR 218.25 (a)(3) and include name, postal address, title of the project and signature or other verification of identity upon request and the identity of the individual or entity who authored the comments. Individual members of an entity must submit their own individual comments in order to have eligibility to object as an individual. A timely submission will be determined as outlined in 36 CFR 218.25 (a)(4). It is the responsibility of the sender to ensure timely receipt of any comments submitted. Names and contact information submitted with comments will become part of the public record and may be released under the Freedom of Information Act.

Comments should be within the scope of the proposed action, have a direct relationship to the proposed action, and must include supporting reasons for the Responsible Official to consider (36 CFR 218.2).

Specific written comments must be submitted electronically, via mail, or in person (Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding holidays) to: Michelle Davalos, Clinch Ranger District, 1700 Park Avenue SW, Norton, VA 24273. Electronic comments including attachments may be submitted by email in word (.doc), rich text format (.rtf), text (.txt), and hypertext markup language (.html) to

https://cara.ecosystem-

management.org/Public//

CommentInput?Project=55877

Input received in response to this solicitation, including the names and addresses of those who comment, will be considered part of the public record on this proposed action and will be available for public inspection. Additionally, pursuant to 7 CFR 1.27(d), any person may request the agency to withhold a submission from the public record by showing how the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) permits such confidentiality. Persons requesting such confidentiality should be aware that, under the FOIA, confidentiality may be granted in only limited circumstances, such as to protect trade secrets. The Forest Service will inform the requester of the agency's decision regarding the request for confidentiality, and where the requester is denied; the agency will return the submission and notify the requestor that the comments may be resubmitted with or without name and address within seven days.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is an equal opportunity provider and employer.