California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection
Eel River Peninsula - Foster Mountain Ranch
NOE - Notice of Exemption
The Foster Mountain Ranch consists of 3,829 acres adjacent to the Sanhedrin Wilderness. The property is located approximately 8 air miles northwest of Willits on the southwest side of the Eel River in Mendocino County. Elevations of the Ranch range from 1,342 feet above sea level on the Eel River to approximately 3,120 feet at the top of Foster Mountain on the western property line. The Eel River runs along the eastern boundary and through the northeast portion of the ranch. Foster Mountain Ranch is one of the three properties within the watershed being funded for conservation easements. CAL FIRE is acquiring the property as a conservation easement for the purpose of protecting forest and rangeland uses including wildlife habitat, watershed stabilization and the continued production of forest products. The federal forest legacy program was created with clearly delineated open-space conservation goals and objectives to protect environmentally important private forest lands threatened with conversion to non-forest uses pursuant to Section 1217 Title XII of the Food, Agriculture, Conservation and Trade Act of 1990 (16 U.S.C section 2013C). Congress has awarded a Forest Legacy Program grant to CAL FIRE in order to aid in the purchase of the easement conveyed for conservation of forested, agricultural and open-spaced land.
This project is exempt pursuant to CEQA Categorical Exemptions: Class 17 (Open Space Contracts or Easements) and Class 25 (Transfer of Ownership of Interest in Land to Preserve Existing Natural Conditions and Historical Resources). Class 17 consists of the establishment of agricultural reserves, the making and renewing of open space contracts under the Williamson Act, or Acceptance of easements or fee interests in order to maintain the open character of the area. Class 25 consists of act or acceptance of easements or fee interests in order to maintain the open character of the area. Class 25 consists of transfers of ownership in interest in land in order to preserve existing natural conditions and historical resource's Field review by CAL Fire staff confirmed that no exceptions apply which would preclude the use of a Notice of Exemption for this project. The Department has concluded that no significant environmental impact would occur to aesthetics, agriculture and forestland/timberland, air quality, biological resources, cultural resources geology and soils, greenhouse gas emissions, hazards and hazardous materials, hydrology and water quality, land use planning ,mineral resources, noise, population and housing, public services, recreation, transportation/traffic, or to utilities and service systems.
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