Bureau of Reclamation Seeks Public Comments on Native Fish Restoration on Blue River and Tributaries

Media Contact: Patricia Cox , (602) 216-3830
John McGlothlen , (602) 216-3866

For Release: October 20, 2004

The Bureau of Reclamation and the Forest Service, in cooperation with the Arizona Game and Fish Department and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, are preparing an Environmental Assessment on a proposal to enhance the native fisheries in the Blue River drainage of eastern Arizona. The purpose of the proposed action is to restore and protect native fish in the Blue River and five tributary streams.

The proposed action includes construction of fish barriers in Lanphier Canyon, Grant, and McKittrick creeks and a barrier on the lower Blue River near the San Francisco River confluence, treatment with piscicide to remove non-native fish, and repatriation of native fish to the renovated areas.

During this initial scoping process, the public has the opportunity to submit comments that will help the agencies involved identify the issues that should be addressed by the EA. For more information or a copy of the Scoping Report, please contact Mr. John McGlothlen of the Bureau of Reclamation at 602-216-3866, or by e-mail (jwmcglothlen@lc.usbr.gov). The Scoping Report is also available on the Phoenix Area Office's website, http://www.usbr.gov/lc/phoenix/

Written comments may be sent until November 19, 2004, to the Bureau of Reclamation, Phoenix Area Office, PXAO-1500 (McGlothlen), PO Box 81169, Phoenix AZ 85069-1169. Comments may be faxed to 602-216-4006, Attention: John McGlothlen.

Once the EA is prepared, evaluating the significance of any potential environmental impacts of the proposed action, there will be a 30-day comment period. In order to be eligible to appeal the project, substantive comments must be submitted during the EA comment period; comments on the Scoping Report alone do not provide appeal eligibility. To request a copy a copy of the draft EA, please send a note to the above address requesting to be added to the mailing list.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at www.usbr.gov and follow us on Twitter @USBR.