Bureau of Land Management Ore. & Wash.
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News Releases
Bureau of Land Management updates management strategy for Southeastern Oregon public lands - 02/23/24

VALE, Ore. – The Bureau of Land Management released a Record of Decision for the Southeastern Oregon Resource Management Plan Amendment, which updates specific aspects of management for 4.6 million acres of public lands in Oregon’s Malheur, Grant, Harney, and Baker counties.

The decision preserves natural landscapes, updates off-highway vehicle use, and implements modest changes to grazing management while protecting wilderness characteristics across 417,190 acres of BLM-managed public land.

“These expansive natural landscapes are special places that provide outstanding opportunities for solitude and primitive, unconfined recreation,” said Vale District Manager Shane DeForest. “We appreciate the public’s engagement as BLM updated strategies to protect the health of these lands while ensuring they continue to meet the needs of Oregon communities.”

The plan amendment was undertaken in response to adverse court rulings and a resulting settlement agreement, in which the BLM committed to evaluate specific issues. Throughout the process, Tribal governments, wildlife agencies, the Southeast Oregon Resource Advisory Council, and members of the public provided valuable input and feedback. BLM officials considered more than 4,000 comments in developing the amendment.

To preserve the unique nature of certain landscapes, the amendment will limit areas where cross-country off-highway vehicle use is permitted. Such use will be limited to about 40,000 acres near Keeney Pass and Bully Creek Reservoir, which are both near the community of Vale. Nearly 16,000 acres will remain closed to vehicles. Across the rest of the 4.5 million acres in the planning area, vehicular use will be limited to existing roads.

The amendment also provides additional guidance on the implementation of Standards for Rangeland Health and processing of voluntarily surrendered livestock grazing permits.

The plan amendment and Record of Decision are posted at the BLM National NEPA Register.

 

-BLM-

 

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.

 

 

Apply now for project funding in western Oregon - 02/14/24

Portland, Ore. – The Bureau of Land Management has funding for projects that maintain and improve public lands across western Oregon. BLM leaders are encouraging individuals, organizations, and local governments to submit funding applications for consideration. 

“Title II funds are used to make investments in public lands and create employment opportunities,” said Heather Whitman, Roseburg District Manager. “These projects improve cooperative relationships among the people that use and care for public lands.” 

The funds are available through Title II of the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act. Proposed projects must improve existing infrastructure, enhance forest ecosystems, or restore and improve land health and water quality. Projects must benefit Oregon and California Grant lands and resources. O&C lands are spread across 18 western Oregon counties. 

“We hope you’ll reach out to us to discuss your proposals before you submit the official application,” said Whitman. “Please contact the BLM district representative where the project would be implemented.”

  • Coos Bay District – Matt Bailey, mbailey@blm.gov, (541) 751-4315
  • Roseburg District – Ryan Kay, rmkay@blm.gov, (541) 464-3230
  • Medford District and Klamath Falls Field Office of the Lakeview District – Amanda Huffman, ahuffman@blm.gov, (541) 618-2487; or
  • Northwest Oregon District – Charity Glade, cbglade@blm.gov, (503) 375-5678.

The application forms, criteria, and instructions are available through grants.gov. The grant is under the heading Notice of Funding Opportunity Announcement L24AS00113 BLM OR/WA Secure Rural Schools, Title II Grants. Applications are due by April 2, 2024

The Western Oregon Resource Advisory Committee will review the applications at their fall 2024 meeting.

Information about the BLM’s Western Oregon Resource Advisory Committee is available at: blm.gov/get-involved/resource-advisory-council/near-you/oregon-washington/western-oregon-rac

 

-BLM-

 

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.

Join the San Juan Islands National Monument Advisory Committee - 02/13/24

Spokane, Wash. — The Bureau of Land Management is now seeking passionate individuals who care about the San Juan Islands National Monument to join the new Monument Advisory Committee. 

There are 12 open positions on the new advisory committee. The MAC helps the BLM provide balanced stewardship of the San Juan Islands National Monument and its resources. Members offer expert advice, ideas, and diverse opinions on land use planning, cultural resources, environmental issues, fire management, recreation, noxious weed management, and more. Nominees will be reviewed based on training, education, and knowledge of the advisory committee’s geographic area. Nominees should also demonstrate a commitment to consensus building and collaborative decision-making. The 45-day nomination period ends March 29, 2024.

BLM officials are also seeking public comments regarding the establishment of the MAC. The 15-day public comment period ends Feb. 28, 2024. To learn more, refer to today’s Federal Register Notice at https://www.federalregister.gov/public-inspection/2024-02939/requests-for-nominations-san-juan-islands-national-monument-advisory-committee-establishment.

To apply or self-nominate for a position on the MAC, submit a resume with an adequate description of qualifications, including information that would enable the Department of the Interior to make an informed decision regarding membership requirements and contact information. Nominees are strongly encouraged to include supporting letters from employers, associations, professional organizations, and/or other organizations that indicate support by a meaningful constituency for the nominee. Please indicate any BLM permits, leases, or licenses that you hold personally or are held by your employer. Submit your application to Travis Edwards via email at tedwards@blm.gov, or mail to: 

Bureau of Land Management
Attn: Travis Edwards
RE: MAC nominations
1103 N. Fancher Rd.
Spokane Valley, WA  99212

Learn more about the San Juan Islands MAC by visiting: https://www.blm.gov/get-involved/resource-advisory-council/near-you/oregon-washington/san-juan-islands-mac

-BLM-

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.

Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument Accepting Artist-in-Residence Applications - 02/12/24

MEDFORD, Ore. — Do you want to spend two weeks creating art in the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument?


The Bureau of Land Management is excited to announce that applications are open for the annual Artist-in-Residence program. The selected artist receives a one- to two-week residency at CSNM in the month of June. Artists will create work while immersed in a beautiful environment and share their art with the public. All artists are encouraged to apply, and there is no preference given to any style or medium.


“Artists have such a unique viewpoint on these special areas,” said Joel Brumm, Assistant Monument Manager. “And they provide a fascinating window into our relationship with public lands.” 


The Artist-in-Residence program is in its eighth year and has translated the monument’s natural and cultural resources into images, objects, and performances.


“Each year we celebrate fascinating new perspectives,” Brumm continued.


During their stay, the artist will share their experience and artistic vision in a public presentation. Following the residency, artists are asked to donate an original artwork piece, which they will retain the rights to.   


One artist and one alternate will be selected based on the following criteria: entry materials, residency proposal, professionalism, and creative vision.


Interested artists can learn more information and an application at the Artist-in-Residence website (https://bit.ly/CSNMart), by e-mailing jduwe@blm.gov, or by calling  (541) 618-2320. Detailed instructions are on the application form. Applications must be submitted by February 29, 2024. Application materials and sample artwork should be submitted in a single email with attachments or links to jduwe@blm.gov.


Those wishing to learn more about the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument information can do so on the CSNM’s website.


-BLM-

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.

Bureau of Land Management seeks public input on Horse Ridge Recreation Area Non-Motorized Project - 02/09/24

Prineville, Ore. — The Bureau of Land Management is opening a 30-day public scoping period today to seek input on the Horse Ridge Recreational Area Non-Motorized Project. The Horse Ridge Recreation Area is in Deschutes County approximately 13 miles southeast of Bend, Oregon.  

The primary draw to the Horse Ridge Recreation Area is mountain biking in the southern half of the HRRA, where Horse Ridge itself is located. Currently, there are over 50 miles of user-created, non-motorized trails traversing the ridge. The HRRA lacks a formally designated trail system. The BLM is proposing to establish an official trail system and may enhance existing trails, build new trails, and close other trails. The BLM also proposes the expansion of the two parking areas that provide access to the HRRA and the Horse Ridge and Big Sagebrush Trailheads as well as the addition of American with Disabilities Act accessible toilets at both trailheads. Other new infrastructure could include handicap parking spaces, a paved route from the handicap parking space to the toilet, and picnic tables. The project would also protect the Horse Ridge Research Natural Area, which is a designated National Natural Landmark (1968).

“The Horse Ridge Recreation Area is already well-loved,” said Lisa Clark, BLM Deschutes Field Office Manager. “We just need to make sure the use and development of the official trail system provides the high-quality recreation experience that our visitors expect while preserving and protecting habitat and the Horse Ridge Research Natural Area.”

The purpose of this notice is to provide the public with an opportunity to share any comments or ideas they may have about how this area should or should not be developed. The BLM is in the scoping phase of the analysis, which means that any comments received will be used to refine the proposed action, identify issues for further analysis, and develop alternatives. If you have comments, please send them to the BLM by March 13, 2024. Additional information on the proposal is posted on BLM’s ePlanning website: https://eplanning.blm.gov/eplanning-ui/project/2030546/510.  

Comments can be submitted in hardcopy, through email, through the BLM’s online platform ePlanning, or by calling the BLM. The details for each commenting method are listed below.

Hard copy: Lisa Clark, Deschutes Field Manager at 3050 NE Third Street; Prineville, OR 97754
Email: blm_or_pr_horseridge@blm.gov
ePlanning: https://eplanning.blm.gov/eplanning-ui/project/2030546/510
Telephone: (541) 416-4634

Comments are most useful if they are specific to the actions proposed, provide additional information about the project area, or identify issues or concerns with the proposal. There will be another public comment period on the environmental assessment before the BLM issues a decision.  

Please be aware comments, including your personal identifying information, may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, it is not guaranteed.  

For additional information, please contact Cece Brick, Outdoor Recreation Planner, at (541) 416-4634 or by email at blm_or_pr_horseridge@blm.gov. Individuals in the United States who are deaf, deafblind, hard of hearing, or have a speech disability may dial 711 (TTY, TDD, or TeleBraille) to access telecommunications relay services. Individuals outside the United States should use the relay services offered within their country to make international calls to the point-of-contact in the United States.
 

-BLM-

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.

Bureau of Land Management hosts virtual meetings on solar energy development - 01/31/24

Portland, Ore. — The Bureau of Land Management is holding two virtual public meetings in February and March to provide information on the Department of the Interior’s ongoing efforts to support appropriate renewable energy development on our nation’s public lands through an updated Western Solar Plan. 

The virtual public meetings will be held via Zoom on Monday, February 5 and Wednesday, March 6 at 10 a.m. Pacific. Individuals who wish to attend can register online here. Visit BLM’s ePlanning website to learn about other public meetings being held around the West.

The meetings will preview the BLM’s proposed revisions to the agency’s Utility-Scale Solar Energy Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (known as the updated Western Solar Plan). The plan would streamline the BLM’s framework for siting solar energy projects and expand BLM’s solar energy program to cover five additional states across the West. 

“The BLM is committed to ensuring public lands do their part to meet our nation’s clean energy goals,” said BLM Director Tracy Stone-Manning. “We can and must do so responsibly, and we look forward to hearing from the public on how to achieve that balance.” 

By directing development to areas that have fewer sensitive resources, less conflict with other uses of public lands, and close proximity to transmission lines, the BLM can permit clean energy more efficiently while maintaining robust public and Tribal engagement, which are central features of all BLM reviews of individual projects. 

The updated Western Solar Plan evaluates six alternatives, each proposing to make different amounts of public land available to solar development applications under different criteria such as proximity to transmission infrastructure, designated critical habitat, or other important ecological and cultural resources. Public input will inform a Final Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement and Record of Decision.

More information about the updated Western Solar Plan and BLM’s ongoing work to facilitate sustainable solar energy development on public lands across the West is available on BLM’s Solar Program website.

The Draft Solar Programmatic EIS was published in the Federal Register on January 19, 2024, opening a public comment period that extends through April 18, 2024. To view the Draft Programmatic EIS and learn how to provide comments, visit the BLM’s ePlanning website.

-BLM-

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.