South Park and Pikes Peak Ranger Districts seeking public input on proposed East Park North Divide Fuels Reduction Project

Release Date: 

Forest Service News Release

Media Contact: Josh Cowden

(719) 225-3793

Joshua.ColeCowden@usda.gov

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

South Park and Pikes Peak Ranger Districts seeking public input on proposed East Park North Divide Fuels Reduction Project

PUEBLO, Colo., Apr. 17, 2024 – The South Park and Pikes Peak Ranger Districts of the Pike-San Isabel National Forests & Cimarron and Comanche National Grasslands are seeking public input on the proposed East Park North Divide Fuels Reduction project. The East Park North Divide Fuels Reduction project area consists of approximately 18,640 acres and is located along the U.S. Highway 24 corridor in eastern Park and central Teller counties. In this project, the United States Department of Agriculture, Forest Service proposes to use vegetation treatments such as tree thinning, prescribed fire, and other fuel reduction methods to reduce the intensity of fires and create healthier and more fire resilient forest conditions across the project area.

The East Park North Divide Fuels Reduction project has been approved as an authorized emergency action under Section 40807 of the 2022 Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, also known as the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Based on the risks outlined in the Forest Service’s January 2022 Wildfire Crisis Strategy, Secretary Thomas J. Vilsack determined that an emergency exists on 250 high-risk firesheds in the western United States. The East Park North Divide Fuels Reduction project lies within Divide and Colorado Springs, two of the 250 high risk firesheds identified.

Projects authorized under this emergency authority adhere to specific requirements and follow several processes as compared to non-emergency Forest Service projects. Specifically, projects authorized under this emergency authority are not subject to the pre-decisional objection process under part 218 of title 36, Code of Federal Regulations. This opportunity to comment will be the only time public input is collected. It is critical that you provide feedback on this proposal during this comment period. Comments on this proposed action will be accepted for 30 days beginning on the first day after the date of publication of the legal notice in the Pueblo Chieftain. If the 30-day period ends on a Saturday, Sunday or Federal holiday, comments will be accepted until the end of the next Federal working day. For this opportunity to comment, the Forest Service will only accept timely submissions.

To provide electronic comments and learn more about the project’s location, purpose and proposed  actions, please visit the project website at: https://www.fs.usda.gov/project/psicc/?project=65314.

The “Get Connected” menu on the right side of the page provides an option to comment as well as an option to subscribe to email updates. Comments should include your name, address, telephone number and (if applicable) the name of the organization you represent.

For information specific to the project, please contact Pike-San Isabel National Forests & Cimarron and Comanche National Grasslands NEPA Planner, Amber Wyndham at amber.wyndham@usda.gov.

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