Two telephone companies have requested permits to build microwave repeaters on an existing communications site on Bulldog Ridge in the Henry Mountains of southeastern Utah.
Bureau of Land Management officials concluded in a 29-page environmental document that the projects could benefit a substantial number of people without much, if any, adverse effect on the environment. The location lies near the Mt. Pennel Wilderness Study Area.Contel Telephone Co. and Beehive Telephone Co. have requested permits for microwave repeaters at the site.
BLM Richfield District Manager Jerry Goodman said a 30-year right-of-way for a communication site was initially granted in 1977 and transferred to Plateau Resources Ltd. of Jackson, Michigan, a year later. Beehive Telephone Co. also used the site from 1979 to 1982 for a marine radio/telephone repeater. Garfield County received approval for use in 1987.
Goodman said the BLM intends to approve the applications. "The microwave repeaters would provide more effective telephone service to Hite Marina and the National Recreation Area facilities at Hite, as well as provide initial telephone service to residents of Caineville, Notom and Sandy (in eastern Wayne County)."
Vegetation at the site consists primarily of windblown, stunted pine and common juniper with aspen, Douglas fir, oak species and ponderosa pine. None of the vegetation has any commercial quality timber value. Grazing and mineral exploration would continue.
"Even though the bison is of high interest and concern to the public, Utah Division of Wildlife Resources and BLM, it is not considered a sensitive wildlife species," the report notes. Mule deer, coyotes, cougar, various species of mountain birds and rodents also inhabit the area, but a wildlife biologist at the Henry Mountain Resource Area office said none of these species is threatened or endangered.