US Forest Service seeking comment on Telephone Gap project | Outdoors

US Forest Service seeking comment on Telephone Gap project | Outdoors

ROCHESTER – The U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Forest Service are pleased to solicit comments for the proposed phone gap-integrated resource project located in the Rochester and Middlebury Ranger Districts of the Green Mountain National Forest.

The 72,250 acre project area includes National Forest System lands in Rutland, Windsor and Addison counties, Vermont, including the cities of Brandon, Chittenden, Goshen, Killington, Mendon, Pittsfield, Pittsford and Stockbridge. The Telephone Gap project proposal is now open for public consideration, and the Forest Service is asking for public comment before preparing an Environmental Impact Assessment.

The management activities proposed as part of the Telephone Gap project are the culmination of nearly three years of field inventory and public participation conducted by Forest Service personnel. The project’s resources and public benefits include improved wildlife habitat, restored soils and wetlands, a sustainable network of roads and trails, increased recreational opportunities and timber harvesting to provide timber products for the local and regional economy, while preserving forest health and diversity to improve.

Written comments will be accepted during the 45-day public comment period, which ends March 13. A detailed description of the Telephone Gap project’s proposed actions, associated maps and instructions for submitting comments can be found on the project website at: fs.usda. gov/project/?project=60192

A public open house to learn more about the project proposal is scheduled for Thursday, February 9 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at Barstow Memorial School, 223 Chittenden Rd., Chittenden. After a brief introduction, the open house provides an informal opportunity to ask Forest Service staff questions about proposed activities. Maps and information will be available for review.

Comments received from the public are used to focus the environmental analysis on resource issues of concern. A Preliminary Environmental Impact Assessment is expected to be completed by June 2023 and is open for a 30-day public comment period. A final environmental review is expected to be completed by fall 2023.

If you have questions or would like more information about the Phone Gap Integrated Resource Project proposal, the public open house, or to submit comments, please contact Jay Strand at 802-767-4261 x5522 or email jay [email protected]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *