30-50-70 -- Public Involvement
Public Notice. The public has the opportunity to offer comments and otherwise participate in the NEPA process as set forth in 40 CFR ' 1506.6 from the time the decision is made to prepare an EIS. A Notice of Intent (30-50-55) to prepare an EIS is published in the Federal Register and serves as the first public notification that an EIS will be prepared. The scoping process (30-50-55), as announced in the Notice of Intent, allows the public, Indian tribes, Federal agencies, States, and local governments to participate in determining the issues to be considered in the EIS.
OPDIVs/STAFFDIVs shall make diligent efforts to involve the public in the environmental review process by providing public notice of NEPA-related hearings, public meetings, and the availability of environmental documents so as to inform those persons and agencies who may be interested or affected. The responsible official shall ensure that public notice is provided for in accordance with 40 CFR '' 1500.6 and1506.6(b). Notice shall be made through direct mail, the Federal Register, local media, or other means appropriate to the scope, issues, and extent of public concern. In all cases, notice shall be given to those who have requested it on an individual action. Public notice shall include the name and location of a contact official through whom additional material may be obtained. EPA will publish in the Federal Register a Notice of Availability of HHS draft and final ElSs
OPDIVs/STAFFDIVs must give public notice in the following instances:
Prior to preparing a draft statement in order to solicit public participation; and
Prior to any public hearings.
- Public Hearings. OPDIVs/STAFFDIVs shall hold public hearings as part of the NEPA environmental review process when hearings will assist substantially in forming environmental judgments. The hearings shall be conducted in a manner that is consistent with OPDIV/STAFFDIV program requirements. The responsible official shall conduct a public hearing on a draft EIS and shall ensure that the draft EIS is made available to the public and the hearing announced at least 15 days in advance of the hearing. The announcement shall identify the subject of the draft EIS and include the location, date, and time of the public hearing.
- Availability of Draft EIS. Draft EISs will be prepared, forwarded to EPA for filing, and made available to the public early enough in the consideration of the proposed action to permit meaningful review of the environmental issues involved. A draft EIS will be sent to any party having an interest in the document, and will be available to the public upon request for the purpose of receiving substantive comment, corrections, and additional information on the issues covered by the statement. Copies of draft statements shall be provided to:
- U. S. Environmental Protection Agency;
- Council on Environmental Quality;
- Other Federal agencies having related special expertise or jurisdiction by law;
- Appropriate local and national organizations;
- Appropriate State and local agencies, including those authorized to develop and enforce environmental standards;
- Indian tribes, as appropriate, and
- Others requesting a copy of the draft statement.
- Comments on Draft EIS. After preparing a draft EIS and before preparing a final EIS, the responsible official shall obtain the comments of Federal agencies,
Indian tribes, State and local government agencies, and the public in accordance with 40 CFR ' 1503.1. The responsible official shall respond to comments in the final EIS in accordance with 40 CFR ' 1503.4. There shall be a 45-day minimum comment period for a draft EIS after EPA publishes a Notice of Availability of the document in the Federal Register (40 CFR ' 1506.10(c)). Procedures for the preparation and circulation of a supplemental statement are contained in 30-50-65G.
Proposed Rulemaking. If the subject of a draft EIS is also the subject of a notice of proposed rulemaking, the Federal Register notice of proposed rulemaking will state that the draft EIS is available upon request, and will solicit comments from all interested persons.
Final EIS. Copies of final statements shall be provided in accordance with the list in subsection C and to all agencies, persons, or organizations who submitted comments regarding the draft statement. Copies of each final EIS will be available upon request, and the responsible HHS organization will make copies of the final statement available for public inspection in public reading room(s).
Record of Decision. The responsible official shall publish the ROD in the Federal Register and disseminate the ROD to the public as provided in 40 CFR ' 1506.6, except as provided in 40 CFR ' 1507.3(c).
This page was last updated on May 23, 2013