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Notice

Notice of Availability of an Environmental Assessment/Habitat Conservation Plan and Receipt of Application for Incidental Take of Golden-Cheeked Warbler

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION:

Notice of availability.

SUMMARY:

The Applicant, White Water Springs, L.L.C., has applied to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) for an incidental take permit pursuant to section 10(a) of the Endangered Species Act (Act). The Applicant has been assigned permit number TE-110131-0. The requested permit, which is for a period of 30 years, would authorize incidental take of the endangered golden-cheeked warbler (Dendroica chrysoparia). The proposed take would occur as a result of the construction and operation of a residential development on 1,758-acres (717 hectares) of the White Water Springs property, Burnet County, Texas. The Service has prepared the Environmental Assessment/Habitat Conservation Plan (EA/HCP) for the incidental take application. A determination of jeopardy or non-jeopardy to the species and a decision pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) will not be made until at least 60 days from the date of publication of this notice. This notice is provided pursuant to Section 10(c) of the Act and National Environmental Policy Act regulations (40 CFR 1506.6).

DATES:

To ensure consideration, written comments must be received on or before November 15, 2005.

ADDRESSES:

Persons wishing to review the application may obtain a copy by writing to the Regional Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, P.O. Box 1306, Room 4102, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87103. Persons wishing to review the EA/HCP may obtain a copy by a written or telephone request to Sybil Vosler, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Ecological Services Office, 10711 Burnet Road, Suite 200, Austin, Texas 78758 (512/490-0057 extension 225). Documents will be available for public inspection by written request or by appointment only during normal business hours (8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.) at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Office, Ecological Services Office, 10711 Burnet Road, Suite 200, Austin, Texas. Data or comments concerning the application and EA/HCP should be submitted in writing to the Field Supervisor, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Ecological Services Office, Austin, Texas at the above address. Please refer to permit number TE-110131-0 when submitting comments.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Sybil Vosler, Ecological Services Office, 10711 Burnet Road, Suite 200, Austin, Texas 78758 (512/490-0057 extension 225).

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Section 9 of the Act prohibits the “taking” of endangered species such as the golden-cheeked warbler. However, the Service, under limited circumstances, may issue permits to take endangered wildlife species incidental to, and not the purpose of, otherwise lawful activities. Regulations governing permits for endangered species are at 50 CFR 17.22.

Applicant: White Water Springs, L.L.C., plans to construct a residential development on 1,758-acres of the White Water Springs property, Burnet County, Texas. This action would adversely affect 369.1 acres (148.8 hectares) of oak-juniper woodland resulting in take of the golden-cheeked warbler. The Applicant proposes to compensate for this incidental take of the golden-cheeked warbler by contributing $300,000 to a conservation entity for use in the purchase and preservation of golden-cheeked warbler habitat within the acquisition area of the Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge and by preserving 20.7 acres (8.3 hectares) of habitat on-site which will be managed in perpetuity for the benefit of the golden-cheeked warbler.

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Larry G. Bell,

Acting Regional Director, Region 2, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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[FR Doc. 05-18406 Filed 9-15-05; 8:45 am]

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