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Press Release
July 16, 2002
Draft environmental assessment available for Lane County AFRC
 
Salem-The Oregon Military Department (OMD) announced today the availability of the draft environmental assessment (EA) for the proposed Lane County Armed Forces Reserve Center and Organizational Maintenance Shop in Eugene, Ore.

The purpose of the proposed action is to provide a modern facility for military reserve units including the Oregon Army National Guard (ORARNG), the US Naval Reserve and the US Marine Corps Reserve, that meets state and federal military standards and training requirements. The new facility would increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the military units assigned to it in performing their military and state emergency missions. The proposed action analyzed in the EA is intended to improve operational and strategic proficiency required for peacetime readiness, wartime mobilization, and the initiation and continuation of combat.
 
Continued use of the existing facilities, which lack adequate space for training, storage, parking and administration, would impair the attainment of mandated mobilization and readiness objectives and adversely effect troop moral. The new facility would substantially improve working conditions and training opportunities, as well as the recruitment and retention of personnel. Additionally, consolidation of space would result in lower overall costs.
 
The EA is prepared in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act, its implementing regulations published by the Council on Environmental Quality (40 CFR 1500-1508), and the Department of the Army's Regulation (AR) 200-2 Environmental Effects of Army Actions. Pursuant to NEPA, federal agencies are required to consider the environmental consequences of major proposed actions in the form of an environmental assessment or environmental impact statement (EIS).
 
The NEPA documentation is in the form of an EA, which analyzes the OMD's proposed action to construct a combined AFRC and OMS in Eugene. This EA evaluates existing conditions and potential impacts of the proposed action and the no-action alternative, including cumulative impacts associated with the proposed action. If the EA documents that impacts would not be significant, a finding of no significant impact (FNSI) would be prepared. If a FNSI cannot be supported, the OMD will determine whether to terminate the project or begin preparation of an EIS.
 
The EA is limited to assessing the effects of constructing and operating a 119,693 square-foot facility on the following environmental resources: soils, wetlands, vegetation, wildlife, water resources, cultural resources, air quality, noise, visual resources, land use, environmental justice, socio-economics, infrastructure, and hazardous materials/wastes. Any potential cumulative and secondary impacts associated with this project are also analyzed.
 
The no-action alternative provides the environmental baseline with which the proposed action and alternative can be compared. Under the no-action alternative, units assigned to the Cottage Grove and Eugene Armories, the Lebanon Organizational Maintenance Shop and USNR; and the US Naval Reserve and the US Marine Corps Reserve will continue to use the existing facilities that they occupy. The preferred alternative to construct a new facility would increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the military units assigned to it in performing their federal military and state emergency missions.
 
A 30 day public review period for the draft environmental assessment will begin on July 17, 2002, and close on Aug. 19, 2002. The draft EA may be reviewed at the Eugene Public Library 100 West 13th Ave., Eugene, Ore., 97401; the Springfield Public Library 225 5th St, Springfield, Ore., 97477; or the Lane Community College Library, 4000 East 30th Ave, Eugene, Ore., 97405. The document may also be accessed on the ORARNG website at www.mil.state.or.us/Agi-E/AFRC.html. Copies can also be obtained by contacting the point of contact below.
 
To ensure all concerns are considered, public comments are being solicited. Written comments or questions must be submitted to the address below until Aug. 19, 2002. Written comments should be sent to:
 
 Mr. Scott Stuemke
ATTN: AGI-ENV
PO Box 14350
Salem, OR 97309-5047
 
For more information contact:
 
Scott Stuemke
 (503) 584-3164