ST. PAUL, Minn. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, along with the U.S. Forest Service and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, are reminding everyone that the NorthMet Mining Project and Land Exchange Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement public comment period will end March 13.
While the co-lead agencies received and carefully considered requests to extend the comment period, the deadline will not be extended. The co-lead agencies determined that the requests received did not include any substantive arguments or rationales that were not already fully considered in the design of the original public comment period. The comment period for the Corps’ Section 404 permit application will also close on March 13.
The co-lead agencies appreciate the public interest in the supplemental draft EIS and have made efforts to ensure the public has had ample opportunity to review and comment on the document. Those measures include a comment period that is twice as long as required for the SDEIS, a joint public hearing and public meeting, two additional public meetings, and supplemental materials such as videos and fact sheets. In addition, by March 13 the public comment period for the Section 404 permit application will have been open for 90 days, which is three times longer than required by regulation.
The Corps encourages everyone that has not commented yet, but wishes to do so, to provide comments no later than 4:30 p.m., March 13. Email comments can be submitted to NorthMetSDEIS.firstname.lastname@example.org. Email submissions should include a full name and legal mailing address. Written comments may also be submitted to: Lisa Fay, EIS project manager, DNR Ecological and Water Resources Division, Environmental Review Unit, 500 Lafayette Road, Box 25, St. Paul, MN 55155-4025.
After the comment period ends, the co-lead agencies will carefully consider all comments received and determine if additions or revisions are needed for the final EIS.
The nearly 650 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, employees working at more than 40 sites in five upper-Midwest states serve the American public in the areas of environmental enhancement, navigation, flood damage reduction, water and wetlands regulation, recreation sites and disaster response. Through the Corps’ Fiscal Year 2011 $175 million budget, nearly 2,800 non-Corps jobs were added to the regional economy as well as $271 million to the national economy. For more information, see www.mvp.usace.army.mil.
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