DOI Reopens Comment Period on Proposed Rule to List the Greater Sage Grouse as a Threatened Species and Designate Critical Habitat
On April 12, 2019 the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) announced the reopening of the comment period on its October 28, 2013 proposed rules to list the Bi-State distinct population segment of greater sage-grouse as threatened under the endangered species act and to designate critical habitat. In 2015 FWS published a withdrawal of the proposed rules. In 2016 several parties filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. On May 5, 2018 the court vacated the withdrawal of the 2013 proposed rules and remanded the matter to the Service for further consideration. As a result of the court order, the status of the action on the distinct population was reverted to a proposed rule and the Service is now reopening the comment period to receive additional information and initiate a new status review. The Service intends to publish a final listing determination on or before October 2019. Written comments are due by June 11, 2019.