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SNF Seeks Public Input On Toilets At Iron Telephone

United States Forest Service

SIERRA NATIONAL FOREST — The Sierra National Forest (SNF) is in the process of performing environmental analysis on the proposed Iron Telephone Staging Area Toilet Installation Project (IronTelephone Project) would like the public’s input.

IronTelephone Project

The SNF is proposing to install a double vault toilet building at the Iron Telephone Staging Area on the Bass Lake Ranger District (BLRD). Currently there are no toilet facilities at this location.

The Project includes installation of a new double vault toilet, accessible pull through parking stall (temporary parking only) and accessible pathway to toilet facility. The purpose of this project is to install a toilet building that serves the high motorized and non-motorized recreational use of the area.

The Iron Telephone Project is located off of Forest Service road 8S09 and 7S07 within the Whisky Ridge Off Highway Vehicle (OHV) riding area. The legal description is Section 3, Township 7 South, Range 22 East.

The BLRD is drafting an Environmental Assessment (EA) for this Project. Initial environmental review has shown that it is unlikely that there will be significant environmental effects from the Project. Staff has preliminarily considered effects to the following resources: Aquatics Wildlife, Botany, Engineering, Fuels, Heritage, Hydrology, Geology/Soils, Range, Terrestrial Wildlife, Visuals.

Due to the limited footprint of the Project (0.5 acre) and the inclusion of design features into the Project to comply with our Forest Plan and to reduce potential impacts, significant impacts are not expected. The following design measures have been established by resources to be included during internal pre-scoping of the proposed project:

  • Fuels and slash created from operations will be piled for planned burning.
  • Specific Range permittee contact(s) provided by the Range Manager will be contacted for purpose of interest and/or potentially affected during project scoping.
  • Vent covers/caps need to be adhered to the tops of the vents on the restroom(s) facility prior to installation. Vent covers with either screen/mesh or plugs to prevent animals from becoming trapped.
  • If the area excavated for the double-vault toilet takes more than one day to be completed, the excavated area will need to be covered with either plywood or two by four boards to prevent wildlife from becoming trapped within the excavated area.

Additional project information is available online through the website at this link  or at the BLRD office.

The Forest Service says comments are welcome!

“We are still in the stages of project planning that allow us to adjust the Project based on public input. Your comments, ideas, and concerns regarding this proposed action are important to the design of the project and the determination if this Project will have significant effects. Please provide your input and ideas about the proposed action and identification of severe anticipated effects from this proposed action. Please try and frame your input in terms of how the Project proposal would result into environmental effects and suggested changes to minimize the identified impacts.”

Please respond in writing on or before August 16, 2019.

This Project is subject to commenting pursuant to 36 CFR 218, Subpart A and B. Only those who submit timely project-specific written comments during this public comment period are eligible to file an objection. Individuals or representatives of an entity submitting comments must sign the comments or verify identity upon request.

The Forest Service will accept comments on this proposal for 30 days following publication of the opportunity to comment legal notice which is the exclusive means for calculating the comment period. Commenters should not rely on dates or timeframe information provided by any other source. It is the commenter’s responsibility to ensure timely receipt of comments (36 CFR 218.25)

Provide comments by mail, fax, email, or in-person to the responsible official, Denise Tolmie c/o Ted Webb, Attn: Iron Telephone Staging Area Toilet Project at 57003 Road 225, North Fork, CA 93643; hand delivered during business hours (M-F 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.); email: theodore.webb@usda.gov ; phone: (559) 877-2218 or FAX: (559) 877-3108. Electronic comments, in common (.doc, .pdf, .rtf, .txt) formats, may be submitted to: comments-pacificsouthwest-sierra@fs.fed.us with the subject: Iron Telephone Staging Area Toilet Project. Names of commenters will be part of the public record subject to the Freedom of Information Act.

“Thank you for your interest in the SNF and we look forward to your input to help us determine the design and impacts of this Project.”

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