Planning

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El Yunque National Forest Land Management Plan

The El Yunque National Forest is revising its Land and Resources Management plan (referred to as the revised forest plan) using the 2012 forest planning rule for the National Forest system.  This section provides information on the Forest planning process.

The plan updates the 1997 Forest Land and Management Plan for El Yunque and will provide strategic direction to guide management of forest resources and be a framework for decision making forest specific projects and activities.

El Yunque National Forest began revising its Forest Plan in 2012.  In 2016, we released a draft forest plan and draft environmental impact statement (DEIS) for public comment and review.  Based on public comment and our analysis, we have completed a final plan and final EIS. The next step is a 60-day objection filing period for the final EIS, draft record of decision and revised plan.  For more information on these documents and the process, see the section below.

Final Forest Plan and FEIS Documents

All documents are in PDF format. The size of the documents can be very large and may take some time to download. 

Filing an Objection

In order to file an objection to the final environmental impact statement (EIS), final revised land management plan, draft record of decision (ROD), you must have previously submitted substantive comments during a previous public comment period for this effort.  The 60-day objection period begins when a legal notice is published on August 24 in the El Nuevo Dia and  San Juan Daily Star.  Individuals or groups who have provided formal comments previously in the process may file an objection.  The Forest Service will review the objections it receives and seek opportunities for resolution.

Objections can be sent by regular mail, fax, email, hand delivery, or express delivery:

Send written objections to:

Reviewing Officer/Acting Regional Forester Ken Arney
USDA Forest Service
Southern Region (R8)
1720 Peachtree Road, NW
Atlanta, GA 30309
Phone: (404) 347-4095
Fax: (404) 347-1781

The office business hours for those submitting hand-delivered objections are:  8:00 a.m. to 4:30 pm Monday through Friday, excluding holidays.  Please state “El Yunque Revised Forest Plan objection” on the envelope when replying by mail.

Send electronic objections to: objections-southern-regional-office@fs.fed.us. Emailed documents must be submitted in a format such as an email message, plain text (.txt), rich text format (.rtf), or Word (.doc, .docx).  Please state “El Yunque Revised Forest Plan objection” in the subject line when providing electronic objections.

Send faxed objections to: (404) 347-1781.  The fax coversheet must include a subject line with “El Yunque National Forest Plan revision objection” and should specify the number of pages being submitted.

Additional Information

Notice of Objections Filed / Aviso de Objeciones Realizadas

Draft Forest Plan and Previous Planning Documents

Collaboration, Communication and Conversations

This page provides information on the collaboration and public involvement efforts that have occurred throughout the Plan Revision process began in 2012.

Collaboration and public involvement are key to revising the Forest Plan and are being used throughout the revision process to help ensure that the Plan meets the needs of the wide variety of stakeholders who enjoy the El Yunque National Forest.

Timeline/Schedule

The El Yunque National Forest began revising its Forest Plan in 2012 using a collaborative approach and the use of the best available science under the new planning guidelines.  The following table outlines the planning phases, process and activities and provides links to key documents or information for each phase of the planning process and provides links to key documents or information for each phase of the planning process.

Process/Product

Activity

Proposed Date

Assessment

  • Evaluate existing and relevant data and information
  • Assess sustainability of social, economic and ecological resources within the plan area and a broader landscape
  • Begin collaboration and communication processes

January 2014

Proposed Action

  • Utilizes information gathered from the assessment, review of key findings and identifies proposed actions to be used to develop the Forest Plan

September 2014

Notice of Intent

  • Notification to Revise the land management Plan in Federal Register with a 45 scoping period for public comment on the Proposed Action

September 2014

Need for Change

  • Highlights those areas of the 1997 Plan to be updated in the revised Plan

September 2014

Draft Plan
 

  • Address potential desired conditions, management objectives, and other plan components based on identified need for change
  • Develop alternatives for issues with differing options

 September 2016

Draft EIS
 

  • Develop a draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) that analyzes the effects upon the environment of each of the Plan alternatives

September 2016

Public comment on Draft Plan and EIS

  • Obtain public feedback on proposed plan and draft EIS during a 90 day public comment period
  • Comments are used to prepare a final EIS

September 2016 - December  2016

Objection Process

  • Prior to approving the preferred alternative, the public may raise issues related to the Plan revision and suggest ways to improve the plan decision as per 36 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 219.53(a)

August 2018

Final Decision

  • Made by El Yunque National Forest Supervisor

October 2018

Implementation and Monitoring

  • Forest Service implements the Plan and begins on-going monitoring

November  2018



https://www.fs.usda.gov/main/elyunque/landmanagement/planning