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Notice

Announcement of Sapelo Island National Estuarine Research Reserve Revised Management Plan

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Estuarine Reserves Division, Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management, National Ocean Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce.

ACTION:

Notice of Approval and Availability of the Final Revised Management Plan for the Sapelo Island National Estuarine Research Reserve.

SUMMARY:

Notice is hereby given that the Estuarine Reserves Division, Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management, National Ocean Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), U.S. Department of Commerce has approved the revised management plan for the Sapelo Island National Estuarine Research Reserve.

The Sapelo Island National Estuarine Research Reserve was designated as part of the National Estuarine Research Reserve System in 1976 pursuant to Section 315 of the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, as amended, 16 U.S.C. 1461. The Reserve has been operating under a management plan approved in 1999. Pursuant to 15 CFR Section 921.33(c), a state must revise their management plan every five years. The submission of this plan brings the reserve into compliance and sets a course for successful implementation of the goals and objectives of the reserve. New facilities and updated programmatic objectives are notable revisions to the 1999 approved management plan.

The mission of the Sapelo Island Reserve is to perpetuate the protection of the Sapelo Island National Estuarine Research Reserve and to provide a platform for conservation-based research, education and stewardship through the Reserve. The revised management plan identifies priority resource issues that are addressed through active management. These priority issues include addressing public access and visitor impact on Reserve uplands and marsh areas, addressing impacts related to activities on the Reserve by the island's population and addressing the projected increase in development and population growth on the Georgia coast. By addressing these priority resource issues, the Sapelo Island Reserve aims to fulfill its mission.

The revised plan establishes goals and objectives for the Reserve's various programmatic activities, including scientific biological research; water quality monitoring; education, training, and outreach programs; and stewardship programs. It also outlines plans for future facility development to support reserve operations.

The reserve has realized some aspects of the 1999 plan, including contributions toward the completion of the Barrier Island Research and Learning Center, a joint research dormitory and lab shared with the University of Georgia.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Amy Clark at (301) 563-1137 or Laurie McGilvray at (301) 563-1158 of NOAA's National Ocean Service, Estuarine Reserves Division, 1305 East-West Highway, N/ORM5, 10th floor, Silver Spring, MD 20910. For copies of the Sapelo Island National Estuarine Research Reserve Management Plan revision, visit: http://www.sapelonerr.org/​.

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Dated: September 15, 2008.

Donna Wieting,

Deputy Director, Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

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[FR Doc. E8-22570 Filed 9-25-08; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 3510-08-P