Sierra and Sequoia National Forests invite you to Virtual Office Hours During  the 90-day Comment Period to Discuss Forest Plan Revision Documents

Sierra and Sequoia National Forests invite you to Virtual Office Hours During the 90-day Comment Period to Discuss Forest Plan Revision Documents

Forests present virtual meetings to discuss revised plans

Vallejo, CA – The Sequoia and Sierra National Forests released drafts of their revised land management plans that provide long-term forest management direction for drought-devastated central and southern Sierra Nevada. These drafts are accompanied by a combined revised draft environmental impact statement. The forests are asking for your formal written comments on all three documents by September 26, 2019. The forests invite the public to join online only “Virtual Office Hours” on July 31 and August 14 to address your questions and to learn more about your interests and concerns as you review the draft documents.

The draft plans would reduce catastrophic wildland fire risk by increasing managed fire on the landscape. The draft plans would continue the removal of  dead trees that threaten life and property, while also investing in the restoration work needed to support healthy forests into the future. These draft plans also emphasize close partnership with Tribes, state agencies, partner organizations, and local communities.

The “Virtual Office Hours” on July 31 and August 14 will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. (Pacific).  The meetings are virtual only; the sessions will not be hosted in the Forest Supervisor Offices. To ensure more effective engagement during the virtual office hours, the forests request that you submit to us ahead of time the questions and concerns you plan to discuss during the virtual office hours.  For the July 31 virtual office hours, please email your questions and concerns to fariba.hamedani@usda.gov  no later than Thursday, July 25. In the subject line for your email, kindly indicate “Office Hours”.  Questions or concerns you submit after July 25 will be addressed at the August 14 session or may be responded to in writing and posted online.

The sessions will be hosted on a webinar platform, but there is the option to join by phone only. Joining by webinar will allow you to view maps and other visuals that may be used during the sessions. The forests request that you register early to help us better anticipate the number of participants. Please register for the July 31 webinar: here.

You may register any time before the meeting or join without registering once the meeting starts by clicking on the registration link above. If you choose to join by conference call only, please use the following connection information: 888-844-9904, Access code: 4798605#.

Later this summer, the forests will also host in-person public meetings, one for each forest, to discuss the draft plans, answer questions and engage in community conversations around select topics. The Sequoia National Forest is hosting their meeting on August 20, 5:30-8:30 p.m., at The Station by Kern County Fire Fighters, 7900 Downing Ave., Bakersfield, CA 93308. The Sierra National Forest is hosting their meeting on August 21, 5:30-8:30 p.m., at Clovis Veteran’s Memorial District building, 808 4th St., Clovis, CA 93612.

You can find more information about this effort, including the draft plans, online at:https://tinyurl.com/USFS-r5planrevision. The Public Involvement and Outreach webpage contains more information on public engagement opportunities, as well as a recording of the July 10 Forest Plan Revision webinar, which provides an orientation to the revised draft documents. You can navigate to that page by clicking the project link above and clicking on Public Involvement and Outreach in the upper-right corner.

Please note that any questions or comments you submit for the virtual office hours will not qualify as formal written comments.  Please visit the project webpage for information on how to submit your formal written comments.  If you have any questions, please contact Fariba Hamedani, Plan Revision Team Leader (707-562-9121 orfariba.hamedani@usda.gov).

 

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