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Public Meetings on the Development of the Forest Service Land Management Planning Rule

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SUMMARY: The USDA Forest Service is committed to developing a new Forest Service Land Management Planning Rule (planning rule) through a transparent and participatory process. To facilitate public participation, dialogue, and active collaboration, the Forest Service will host a national science forum, three national roundtables, and nine regional roundtables. Summaries of each session will be produced and posted on the planning rule Web site as part of the public record.

While public participation in the forum and roundtables will be a valuable source of information for the rule-writing process, this participation is not a substitute for the submission of written comments through the formal National Environmental Policy Act and Administrative Procedure Act (NEPA/APA) processes. Any comments you wish to be considered as part of the formal NEPA/APA process must be made by you in writing during the appropriate comment period.

DATES: The national science forum will take place March 29 and 30, 2010, in Washington, DC. The national roundtables are scheduled for April 1 and 2, April 20 and 21, and May 11 and 12, 2010, in Washington, DC.

The nine regional roundtables will take place in the following locations:

-- Pacific Northwest Region (Region 6), Portland, OR on April 6, 2010;
-- Pacific Southwest Region (Region 5),Sacramento, CA on April 6, 2010;
-- Intermountain Region (Region 4), Salt Lake City, UT on April 8, 2010;
-- Rocky Mountain Region, (Region 2), Lakewood, CO on April 12, 2010;
-- Northern Region (Region 1), Missoula, MT on April 13, 2010;
-- Alaska Region (Region 10), Juneau, AK on April 13, 2010;
-- Southern Region (Region 8), Atlanta, GA during the week of April 12, 2010 (exact date to be determined);
-- Eastern Region (Region 9), Chicago, IL during the week of April 28 (exact date to be determined); and
-- Southwestern Region (Region 3), Albuquerque, NM on April 28, 2010.
-- Region 2 will host additional meetings on April 14 in Cheyenne, WY and on April 21 meeting in Rapid City, SD.

Several Forest Service regions will videoconference their regional meeting to Forest Service offices in other locations:
-- Region 5 will videoconference to Forest Service offices in San Bernandino, CA and Redding, CA with the April 6 Sacramento, CA meeting;
-- Region 1 will videoconference with Forest Service offices in Couer d'Alene, ID and Billings, MT with the April 13 meeting in Missoula, MT;
-- Additional videoconference locations are also possible; please check the planning rule Web site, at http://www.fs.usda.gov/planningrule, for the most up-to-date information.

A more detailed schedule of these planning rule public meetings, including information on meeting times and specific locations, will be available on the planning rule Web site at http://www.fs.usda.gov/planningrule. The exact dates for the meetings in Atlanta, GA and Chicago, IL will be posted to the planning rule Web site as soon as the information is available.

ADDRESSES: The addresses for the science forum, national roundtables, and regional roundtables will be available on the planning rule Web site at http://www.fs.usda.gov/planningrule.

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