K.I.S.S. in Rule Form, Part 5

In drafting these K.I.S.S. model rules, I look first at what the original 1979 and subsequent 1982 rules have to say on each subject. I use the 1979 rules because I have a ragged paper copy of that day’s federal register with the rules in it. This heirloom was given to me when I was hired as an assistant to teach NFMA planning to Forest Service interdisciplinary teams. My boss told me to read the rules, which were hot of the press, and be prepared to “teach” them the following week. I look to the 1982 rules because they are the rules under which all forest plans were promulgated.

It was with some amusement that I noticed, for the first time, that the 1982 rules fail to faithfully implement NFMA’s nominal public participation requirement (see the link’s paragraph (d)). I have fixed that problem below:

36 CFR 219.6: Public Participation

(a) The revised land management plan shall be made available to the public electronically and at convenient locations in the vicinity of the unit for a period of at least three months before the revised plan is adopted. During this three-month period, public meetings at locations that foster public participation in the plan revision shall be held.

(b) If the land management plan revisions, singly or in combination with the vegetation management and timber harvest program, require an environmental impact statement pursuant to Section 102(2)(C) of the National Environmental Policy Act (“NEPA”), 42 U.S.C. § 4321 et seq., the public participation process set forth in Council on Environmental Quality regulations, 40 CFR Part 1500 et seq., shall be followed.

(c) In addition to the requirements of (a) and (b) above, other processes suited to the decisions made in the plan revision, including the vegetation management and timber harvest program, may be used to involve the public.

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