Many of you have been following the Mexican wolf rule making process and we want to bring you up to speed with the latest information we have. On September 19, 2013 comments are due for the Notice of Intent to Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for the Proposed Revision to the Nonessential Experimental Population of the Mexican wolf. This is the scoping process. What is scoping?
Scoping is the first step in the EIS process. The purpose of scoping is to narrow the focus of the EIS to significant environmental issues, to eliminate insignificant impacts from detailed study, and to identify alternatives to be analyzed in the EIS. Scoping also provides notice to the public and other agencies that an EIS is being prepared, and initiates their involvement in the process.
Today, ACGA is reviewing the following scoping comments for submittal. This is in the review process and are still taking comments and editing this draft but because of the short time frame we wanted to send this out ASAP. If you have comments for the letter please let me know ASAP.
To submit your own comments (THIS IS HIGHLY ENCOURAGED)
(1) Electronically: Go to http://www.regulations.gov/#!submitComment;D=FWS-R2-ES-2013-0098-0001
(2) By hard copy: Submit by U.S. mail or hand-delivery to:
Public Comments Processing, Attn: FWS-R2-ES-2013-0098;
Division of Policy and Directives Management; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service;
4401 N Fairfax Drive, MS 2042- PDM; Arlington, VA 22203.
ACGA’s talking points for the wolf:
No additional introductions of Mexican wolves should take place in Arizona and New Mexico until several of the following qualifications have been met and properly evaluated.
- Re-introduction should be conducted in the prime area of the specie’s habitat in Mexico. Mexico must be a critical partner for the wolf and should be fully committed to the program.
- ACGA believes that the state agencies (Arizona Game and Fish) should have the primary control over the program.
- The 10(j) rule governing the management of Mexican wolves in Arizona and New Mexico should authorize private landowners and their agents to take Mexican wolves engaged in killing, wounding, biting, chasing, threatening or harassing humans, pets, livestock on private land, subject to reasonable notice and reporting requirements.
Scoping comment for Environmental Impact Statement on pending U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposal to revise the rule establishing the Mexican wolf in Arizona-New Mexico as a nonessential experimental population
Arizona Game and Fish Department to hold informational meetings on federal proposals regarding Mexican wolves
Sept. 13, 2013
The Arizona Game and Fish Department will hold public meetings this month in Payson, Tucson and Pinetop to share information with constituents on two proposed U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service rules dealing with Mexican wolf conservation, and how the public can provide comments to the Service.
The first federal rule proposes delisting the gray wolf from the federal list of threatened and endangered species but maintaining endangered status for the Mexican wolf. The second federal rule proposes expansion of the geographic boundaries of the Mexican Wolf Experimental Population Area in Arizona and New Mexico, as well as modification of the 10(j) rule for managing the experimental Mexican wolf population. Public comments to the Service on both proposed rules are due by Oct. 28, 2013.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the agency responsible under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) for taking comments from the public regarding the two proposals, but the Service is not holding any public hearings in Arizona. It has only scheduled public hearings in three out-of-state locations: Washington, D.C. and Sacramento, Calif., on the first rule, and Albuquerque, N.M. on both rules.
“Since the Service has not scheduled any public hearings in our state, we feel it’s important for Arizona Game and Fish, as the state agency responsible for managing wildlife in Arizona, to meet with constituents so they are informed about these proposals and are aware of how they can provide formal comment to the Service,” said Jim deVos, assistant director for Game and Fish’s Wildlife Management Division. “The questions and input we hear at these meetings will also continue to inform us of the desires and concerns of our diverse constituency.”
The meetings will be held from 4-7 p.m. on the following dates:
- Monday, Sept. 23 — Payson, Greater Payson Moose Lodge, 4211 E. Highway 260, Star Valley.
- Tuesday, Sept. 24 — Tucson, Arizona Game and Fish Department Region 5 office, 555 N. Greasewood Road.
- Thursday, Sept. 26 — Pinetop, Arizona Game and Fish Department Region 1 office, 2878 E. White Mountain Blvd.
Each meeting will include a presentation at 4 p.m. that will be repeated at 5:30 p.m. There will be an opportunity for attendees to ask questions or share comments after each presentation. Information will be provided on how to submit formal comments to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on the proposed rules.
Arizona Game and Fish also plans to post a video of the presentation on its website at www.azgfd.gov
sometime the week of Sept. 23.
Announcement of the release of a new book by Dr. Jimmy T (Gunny) LaBaume.
A Handbook for Ranch Managers A Comprehensive Reference Manual for Managing the Working Ranch.
The paperback version is soon to be available at Amazon.com.
The Kindle version is already available. It can be seen here.