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Bone and Long Pine Creeks Watersheds 

Projects Ready for Public Comment and Review  

Bone and Long Pine Creeks Watershed Improvement Plan and Environmental Assessment

Sponsor: Middle Niobrara

Project Location: Brown, Cherry, and Rock Counties, Nebraska

Project website: https://www.mnnrd.org/watershed-flood-prevention-operations-wfpo-program

Project Description

The United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), in partnership with the Middle Niobrara Natural Resources District, is proposing to fund watershed protection measures through the Watershed Protection and Flood Prevention Act (Public Law [PL] 83-566) in the Bone and Long Pine Creek watersheds in Brown, Cherry, and Rock Counties, Nebraska.  The main objective of the project is to reduce streambank erosion and improve fish habitat within the Bone Creek and Long Pine Creek Watersheds.  
 
NEPA Analysis

NRCS, as the lead federal agency, completed National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) analysis in the form of a Watershed Plan and Environmental Assessment (Plan-EA) to analyze impacts to the natural and human environment from this project. The Plan-EA complies with the Council on Environmental Quality’s regulations at 40 CFR Parts 1500-1508 and the Natural Resources Conservation Service Regulations (7 CFR Part 650), which require an evaluation of potential environmental impacts associated with federal projects and actions.

Project Status

Pursuant to Section 102[2][c] of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, the Council on Environmental Quality Regulations [40 CFR Part 1500], and the Natural Resources Conservation Service Regulations [7 CFR Part 650], NRCS gives notice that an environmental impact statement is not being prepared for the Bone and Long Pine Creeks Watershed Improvement Plan.

The environmental assessment of this federally assisted action indicates that the project will not cause significant local, regional, or national impacts on the environment. As a result of these findings, Robert D. Lawson, State Conservationist, has determined that the preparation and review of an environmental impact statement is not needed for this project.
The project purpose is watershed protection. The proposed action includes the following improvements: grade control stabilization structures, a stream crossing, a pond, a sediment control basin, streambank protection, critical area planting, aquatic organism passage, fish and wildlife habitat restoration, oxbow restorations, and stream rehabilitation along eleven (11) stream reaches within the Bone and Long Pine Creek Watershed, and weather stations and automated gates on irrigation canals.

The Notice of a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) has been forwarded to various Federal, State, and local agencies and interested parties. Basic data developed during the environmental assessment are on file and are available below.

No administrative action on implementation of the proposal will be taken until after March 22nd, 2024.

Written comments may be sent to:  

Melissa Baier
USDA-NRCS
Nebraska Watershed Planning Coordinator
100 Centennial Mall North Room 152,
Lincoln, Nebraska 68508
Email: melissa.baier@usda.gov
Office: 402-437-4065