FAIRBANKS-Should mining be allowed in a portion of the White Mountains National Recreation Area?

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management is taking public comment on a revised management alternative, which is included in the Supplement to the Eastern Interior Draft Resource Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement.

A public meeting on the revised alternative, which is not the BLM's preferred alternative for the White Mountains, is scheduled for 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday at the Morris Thompson Cultural and Visitors Center in Fairbanks. An open house about the idea will be held 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the center.

The supplemental management plan was called for following comments received on the original plan, released a year ago, from people who challenged the exclusion of mining as a possible use in the White Mountains. Critics said BLM had misinterpreted the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act when it came to the conclusion that mining was prohibited in the 1-million acre recreation area north of Fairbanks.

The BLM on Monday announced other meeting dates and locations to gather public comment:

• Fort Yukon: Tribal Hall, Wednesday; 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. open house, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. public meeting.

• Eagle: Eagle School, March 11, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. public meeting.

• Eagle Village: Tribal Hall, March 12, 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. public meeting

• Chalkyitsik: Community Hall, March 19 (rescheduled from March 1), 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. open house, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. public meeting.

Additional information is available at the Eastern Interior RMP home page at www.blm.gov/ak or from Jeanie Cole, planning team leader, Eastern Interior Field Office at (907) 474-2340 or (800) 437-7021.