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Tue, Dec. 10

Grand Canyon extends public comment period to April 4 for Backcountry Management Plan

The park held a public scoping meeting Dec. 2 at Shrine of the Ages on the South Rim. Loretta Yerian/WGCN

The park held a public scoping meeting Dec. 2 at Shrine of the Ages on the South Rim. Loretta Yerian/WGCN

GRAND CANYON, Ariz. -The National Park Service (NPS) announced it is adding a 30-day extension of the public comment period for Grand Canyon National Park's Backcountry Management Plan (BMP) and Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS). The public comment period began Nov. 23, 2015 and will close April 4.

The 30-day extension gives the public additional time to review the DEIS and submit comments for consideration.

The purpose of the BMP is to establish an up-to-date plan that addresses contemporary backcountry issues and provides an adaptable framework that continues to allow the public to experience and preserve Grand Canyon's backcountry and wilderness. Grand Canyon's existing BMP was completed in 1988 and requires revisions to comply with current NPS laws and policies and the park's 1995 General Management Plan. The park's backcountry encompasses over 1.1 million acres, most of which are proposed for wilderness designation.

The park said public participation is an integral part of this planning process and will help ensure the plan's success. Anyone wishing to comment on the BMP can do so online at the Planning, Environment and Public Comment (PEPC) website at Park Planning.Click on the "Backcountry Management Plan" or "Open for Comments" tab on the left-hand side of the toolbar and then select the EIS link.

Comments can also be mailed to Superintendent, Grand Canyon National Park, Attn: Backcountry Management Plan, PO Box 129, Grand Canyon, Arizona 86023.

More information about the Backcountry Management Plan and DEIS, public scoping, and public meetings can be found at the PEPC site. Any updates will be posted on the PEPC site as it becomes available.

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