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Appendix W
National Marine Fisheries Service Consultation



 
 
:
File Code 2670
Date June 11, 1999
Rodney R. McInnis, Acting Regional Administrator
National Marine Fisheries Service
Southwest Region
501 West Ocean Blvd., Suite 4200
Long Beach, CA 90802-4213
 

Dear Mr. McInnis:

The purpose of this letter is to initiate early consultation for listed and proposed anadromous fish on National Forest lands within the area of the proposed Herger-Feinstein Quincy Library Group Forest Recovery Act (hereafter referred to as pilot project). The pilot project is currently being analyzed at the programmatic level and is likely to result in a non-significant amendment to the current Land and Resource Management Plans (LRMP) for each affected Forest. At this time, and in recognition of consultation completed to date on the Lassen National Forest LRMP, the Forest is requesting a letter of concurrence on the conclusions and proposed consultation process described below for the pilot project.

Under the proposed programmatic action, the pilot project as stated in the Act, would be implemented on portions of the Lassen, Plumas, and Tahoe National Forests. Spotted Owl Habitat Areas (SOHAs), Protected Activity Centers (PACs), and areas designated as either "Offbase" or "Deferred" are excluded from the required "resource management activities" which include Defensible Fuel Profile Zone (DFPZ) construction, group selection timber harvest, individual tree selection, and riparian management. The Scientific Analysis Team (SAT) guidelines for riparian protection would apply when implementing management activities under the pilot project. In addition, the interim rule regarding suspension of road construction and reconstruction in unroaded areas would apply. The proposed action would comply with all federal laws, regulation, and Forest Plans as amended by the California Spotted Owl Sierran Province Interim Guidelines (CASPO) and interim PACFISH direction.

Resource management activities under the pilot project would not be conducted in offbase or deferred areas, including three of the five anadromous fish-producing watersheds on the Lassen: Deer, Mill, and Antelope Creeks. Battle Creek and Butte Creek, however, are subject to resource management activities of the proposed pilot project. Specific direction and standards and guidelines contained in the LRMP, as amended by PACFISH, will continue to apply on National Forest lands within the two basins. More restrictive standards and guidelines may apply at the project level; however, with the application of SAT guidelines.

Based on the above information, the Forest in consultation with NMFS through the Level 1 team process (January 25 and May 5, 1999 Level 1 meetings and various phone conversations) has concluded that the proposed programmatic pilot project is consistent with programmatic consultation completed on the LRMP. In order to continue to meet ESA obligations, site-specific assessments (evaluated at the watershed scale) will be conducted and consulted on as individual projects are evaluated under the NEPA process. Therefore, the Forest is requesting written concurrence that Endangered Species Act (ESA) obligations for consultation at the programmatic level for the proposed project have been met under plan level consultation completed to date.

If you have any questions, please contact Melanie McFarland, Forest Fisheries Biologist, at (530) 257-2151..

Sincerely,

/s/ David R. Harmer
DAVID R. HARMER
Acting Forest Supervisor

cc:
Alice Berg, NMFS
District Ranger, Almanor
District Ranger, Hat Creek
Gary Smith, ID team leader for HF-QLG EIS
 
    UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE
Southwest Region
501 West Ocean Boulevard, Suite 200
Long Beach, California 90802-4213
TEL (310) 980-4000; FAX (310) 980-4012

July 27, 1999

David R. Harmer
Acting Forest Supervisor
Lassen National Forest
55 South Sacramento Street
Susanville, CA 96130

Dear Mr. Harmer:

The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) received your June 11, 1999, letter requesting early consultation on the Lassen National Forest (LNF) lands within the area of the Herger-Feinstein Quincy Library Group Forest Recovery Act (hereafter referred to as the Pilot project).

The NMFS concurs that the proposed Pilot project is consistent with the programmatic Biological Opinion completed by NMFS (1998) regarding implementation of the LNF's Land and Resource Management Plan as amended by PACFISH. The NMFS has concluded that no further consultation at the programmatic level is required. The NMFS will evaluate future project-specific Biological Assessments at the watershed scale for land management projects proposed under the pilot project and which occur in anadromous watersheds on the LNF. If you have any specific questions, please contact Alice Berg at (707) 441-3533.

Sincerely,

/s/ Patrick J. Rutten - for
RODNEY R. McINNIS
Acting Regional Administrator

cc: LNF - M. McFarland, Fisheries Biologist

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