49 CFR 520.26 - Public hearings.
(a) A public hearing on a proposed or ongoing action covered by a DEIS shall be held upon the determination by the official responsible for such action, in consultation with the Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation, that a public hearing would be appropriate and in the public interest. In deciding whether a public hearing is appropriate, the responsible official should consider:
(1) The magnitude of the proposal in terms of economic costs, the geographic area involved, and the uniqueness or size of the commitment of the resources involved;
(2) The degree of interest in the proposal, as evidenced by requests from the public and from Federal, State, and local authorities that a hearing be held;
(3) The likelihood that information will be presented at the hearing which will be of assistance to the agency in fulfilling its responsibilities under the NEPA;
(4) The extent to which public involvement already has been achieved through other means, such as earlier public hearings, meetings with citizen representatives, and/or written comments on the proposed action; and
(5) The extent of potential environmental impact.
(b) If it is determined that a public hearing is to be held in accordance with paragraph (a) of this section, the official responsible for the action shall both announce the hearing through newspaper articles, direct notification to interested parties, and clearinghouses, and cause a notice to be issued in the Federal Register at least 30 days prior to the time of such hearing:
(1) Identifying the subject matter of the hearing;
(2) Announcing the date, time, and place of the hearing and the procedures to be followed; and
(3) Announcing the availability of the DEIS and any other information, as appropriate, for public inspection at one or more locations in the area affected by the action.