“Mining is a longstanding industry in Northeastern Oregon and the Forest Service will continue working to provide mining opportunities now and in the future,” said Jeff Tomac, Whitman District Ranger for the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest.
This is a significant step toward the Wallowa-Whitman and Umatilla National Forests’ approval of 28 mining Plans of Operations in the Granite Creek Watershed.
Next steps will be responding to comments received, release of a final Environmental Impact Statement and draft Record of Decision. Forest officials anticipate the draft Record of Decision will be released this summer, followed by a 45-day pre-decisional objection period.
After the final Record of Decision is signed and issued, prior to commencement of mining activities, reclamation bonds and any 401 certifications and valid water rights determined necessary as a result of this analysis will be required before the Plans of Operations are approved.
Hard copies of the DEIS are available at the Whitman Ranger District Office or by contacting Darcy Weseman at 541-523-1302 or email@example.comGuidelines for the submission of written, verbal or electronic comments can be found in the legal notice or the project documents, which can be accessed athttp://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=2209
The Granite Creek Watershed (approximately 94,480 acres) is located in the Blue Mountains of eastern Oregon and is primarily within the administrative boundaries of the Whitman Ranger District, Wallowa-Whitman National Forest (40,624 acres), and the North Fork John Day Ranger District, Umatilla National Forest (49,539 acres). The Granite Creek Watershed is located approximately 30 miles west of Baker City, in Baker County, Oregon, and 40 miles southeast of Ukiah, in Grant County, Oregon.