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Black Sandy State Park Proposed Office Building

Decision Notices - 04/05/2012

Decision Notice for Black Sandy State Park Proposed Office Building Project Draft Environmental Assessment April 5, 2012 Proposed Action Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks (FWP) proposed to purchase and install a prefabricated concrete building on a poured concrete slab. The building would have electricity and serve as an administrative building to operate the internet based campground reservation system. Montana Environmental Policy Act Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks is required by the Montana Environmental Policy Act (MEPA) to assess significant potential impacts of a proposed action to the human and physical environment. In compliance with MEPA, an Environmental Assessment (EA) was completed for the proposed project by FWP and released for public comment on February 28, 2012. Public comments on the proposed action were taken from February 28, 2012 through March 21, 2012. The EA was mailed to 35 individuals and groups. In addition, the public was notified of the public comment period for this EA by the following methods:  ‐Two public notices in each of these papers: Helena Independent Record, Butte Standard and Bozeman Daily Chronicle.  ‐One statewide press release  ‐Public notice posted on the Fish Wildlife and Parks web page:  ‐A feature article on the project was published in the Helena Independent Record on February 28, 2012. Summary of Public Comment The proposed project received two comments from the public. One comment expressed support for the proposed project and stated that the project was certainly needed. The other comment did not support the proposal and recommended other alternative such as building a wood structure, further reviewing alternative “C” and using “Smart” phones instead of building a concrete office. FWP response to comments on the proposed action Comment: I support this improvement project. It is certainly needed. I would also like to see a fish cleaning station built. Response: The comment above is noted. This proposal is limited to construction of a park administration building. Comment: I do not support the construction of a prefab concrete structure at Black Sandy. The concrete bunker is not any better than a wooden structure. A wooden structure could also have electricity and air conditioning. How would either type of structure wood or concrete "fix" the wireless connection to the Helena Regional Office? The rational that this "improvement" will enhance revenue and visitor usage is unsupported. I wish the Parks Division would drop the "Colorado" solutions situation. Alternative "B" is unnecessarily. Alternative "A" or "C" should be further reviewed and evaluated. I think the new "smart" phones could solve the situation. They don't need a concrete bunker a Black Sandy. Manage the parks, don't build unnecessary infrastructure. Response: A concrete structure was selected because they are prefabricated and do not require specifications for a contractor to build which increases costs. A concrete structure is also more durable and vandalism resistant. The proposal is to install a pole with a signal booster on the building that would operate the reservation computer system from a cell phone signal. Smart phones would not solve the problem because we currently do not have cell phone coverage in the park. Decision There are no modifications necessary to the Draft Environmental Assessment based on public comment. The Draft Environmental Assessment with this Decision Notice will serve as the final document for the proposal. I find there is no significant impact on the human and physical environments associated with this project. Therefore, I conclude that the Environmental Assessment is the appropriate level of analysis and an Environmental Impact Statement is not required. Appeal This project is subject to appeal, which must be submitted to the FWP Director (Mr. Joe Maurier, Director, Montana Fish, Wildlife &Parks, PO Box 200701, Helena, MT 59620‐0701) in writing and post marked within 30 days of the date on this decision notice. The appeal must specifically describe the basis for the appeal, explain how the appellant has previously commented to the department or participated in the decision‐making process, and lay out how FWP may address the concerns in the appeal. Gerald Walker Regional Park Manager A Division of Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks

Contact Information

If you have a question regarding this decision notice, please contact Craig Marr, Helena Area Resource Office Park Manager at 406‐495‐3270.