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Sequoia to Release Draft Travel Management Plan

Porterville, CA., January 16, 2009.  The Sequoia National Forest is one step closer to having a system of designated travel routes for wheeled motorized vehicles. On January 30, 2009, the U.S. Forest Service will release a Travel Management Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for a 60-day public review period which will end on March 31, 2009.

The Travel Management Draft EIS examines five alternative ways to manage a designated system of existing routes, most which occur through the southern portion of the Sequoia National Forest. The Draft EIS describes these five alternatives, and the public input used to develop them, the analysis of the alternatives and the effects of implementing each one. "I would like to hear from our public throughout this 60-day public involvement process," stated Tina Terrell, Sequoia National Forest Supervisor, who will make the final decision. "My objective is to balance public access to your national forest by providing a diversity of road and trail riding opportunities, along with the need to protect unique forest resources."

The focus of the next 60-days will be to communicate what is in the Draft EIS, to help the public understand the proposal, to review the analysis, and to attend public meetings to discuss issues and concerns.  Following the analysis of public comments, Forest Supervisor Terrell will make a final decision and create a Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) and Record of Decision (ROD). This decision is scheduled to be made late spring, 2009.

Five public workshops will be held throughout forest communities to display maps and information, and explain key features of the document. The workshop schedule is:

Location

Date

Time

Kerr-McGee Center/ Fossil Falls Room
100 W. California Ave., Ridgecrest, CA

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Forest Supervisors Office
1839 S. Newcomb,  Porterville, CA

Saturday, February 21, 2009

9:30 am - 11:30 am

Clarion Hotel
3540 Rosedale Highway, Bakersfield, CA 

Saturday, February 21, 2009

2:30 am - 4:30 am

Lake Isabella
Location To Be Announced later. 

Saturday, February 28, 2009

9:30 pm - 11:30 pm

Clarion Hotel
3540 Rosedale Highway, Bakersfield, CA 

Saturday, February 28, 2009

2:30 am - 4:30 am

The workshops and open houses are opportunities for interested people to drop in during the event hours to informally meet with Forest Service staff and learn about the Draft EIS.  Each meeting will feature maps and other information that illustrate and explain an overall travel management system. Displays and Forest Service personnel will be on hand to help guide people to the information they want.

The Draft EIS, ten maps representing the alternatives, and other project information will soon be available on the Sequoia National Forest website at  www.fs.fed.us/r5/sequoia/projects/ohv_route_designation, or a CD with the Draft EIS and maps can be requested by email from This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or by contacting Chris Sanders, Project Team Leader, at (559) 784.1500.

This travel management project is part of a Forest Service initiative designed to address the impacts of unmanaged recreation on the health of national forests. The DEIS proposes to regulate and manage wheeled motor vehicle use in the Sequoia National Forest and to identify roads and trails where this use will be allowed. It also addresses seasonal closures of wheeled motor vehicle routes. Other National Forests in California are developing similar management direction.

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