Jacksonville District Header Image

 

JACKSONVILLE DISTRICT

Home
Home > Missions > Regulatory > Public Notices

Public Notice Archive

Public Notice Notifications

The Jacksonville District currently has five categories of public notice notification mailing lists. If you wish to receive email notifications when new public notices are added to this page, please send a request to Regulatory Webmaster.  Each category is described below. Be sure to specify which list(s) you want to be included on.

Florida - This includes all public notices for projects being reviewed for Standard Permits within the State of Florida.

Antilles - This includes all public notices for projects being reviewed for Standard Permits within the Antilles area (this includes Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands).

Tropical Storms & Other Emergencies - These public notices provide information on procedures for emergency permitting requirements due to specific tropical storm events or other emergency situations.

Special Issues - These are public notices that involve the Regulatory program but which are generally not limited to one particular geographic area. These would include public notices for the establishment or modification of Restricted Areas/Danger Zones, re-issuance of General Permits or Nationwide Permits, changes to guidance and policies, etc.

Administrative Penalty - These public notices provide information associated with Administrative Penalties. An Administrative Penalty can be assessed to address violations associated with issued Department of the Army permits.

ATTACHMENTS


  Graphics
Bookmark and Share Email Print


SAJ-2008-03595(SP-TSH)

Posted: 2/2/2017

Expiration date: 2/23/2017


TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN: The Jacksonville District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) has received an application for a Department of the Army permit pursuant to Section 404 of the Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. §1344) and Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 (33 U.S.C. §403) as described below:

APPLICANT:  Okaloosa County
                       1540 Miracle Strip Parkway SE
                        Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548

WATERWAY AND LOCATION: The project would affect waters of the United States associated with the Gulf of Mexico and associated beach. The project is located along 2.8 miles of Gulf of Mexico beach on Okaloosa Island, west of East Pass near Destin and east of Fort Walton Beach, Okaloosa County, Florida. The project is more specifically located 31 feet west of R-1 and extending eastward to R-15.

Note - The State of Florida has established range monuments along the beach for the purpose of monitoring its coastline. These monuments do not necessary correspond to physical monuments found along the beach. The monuments are associated with specific points and elevations along Florida’s coast. The locations referenced above as R-1 and R-15 are based upon these range monuments.

The borrow area is located in the Gulf of Mexico, approximately 1.3 miles south of Okaloosa Island and 4 miles west of East Pass, near Latitude 30.375073° North, Longitude 86.566707° West, Okaloosa County, Florida.

APPROXIMATE COORDINATES:

                                     Western Limits             Eastern Limits
Latitude                        -30.396732°                 30.392957°
Longitude                     -86.633245°                -86.585718°

PROJECT PURPOSE:

Basic: Beach nourishment

Overall: Nourishment of beach and beach berms along 2.8 miles of the Gulf of Mexico shore of Okaloosa Island, in Okaloosa County, Florida.

EXISTING CONDITIONS: The project area has been affected by past tropical storms including Hurricanes Erin and Opal in 1995, Hurricane Georges in 1998, Tropical Storm Isidore in 2002, Hurricane Ivan in 2004, and Hurricane Dennis in 2005. Extensive erosion along the entire coastline following Hurricanes Ivan and Dennis prompted the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) to approve emergency funding for the Okaloosa Island Beach Management Feasibility Study (Taylor Engineering 2007). The study indicated a need for the currently proposed Okaloosa Island Beach Restoration Project.

The ocean borrow site is approximately 9,000 feet by 4,000 feet, encompasses approximately 700 acres, and initially contained approximately 7,524,400 cubic yards of mineral sand that was determined to be compatible with native beach sand. Three previously authorized projects have removed a total of 1,768,300 cubic yards from the site. Approximately 5,756,100 cubic yards of sand remains available at the borrow site.

PROPOSED WORK: The applicant proposes to nourish a 2.8-mile long beach segment extending from 31 feet west of R-1 eastward to R-15. The proposed construction template is designed to achieve pre-Hurricane Opal beach widths and would relocated the mean high water line (MHWL) of the shoreline approximately 168 feet seaward, on average. The project design includes a 40-foot wide dune crest at +14-feet NAVD, 60-foot wide back berm at +8.5 feet NAVD, and a 140-foot wide berm at +5.5-feet NAVD. These widths may vary in locations where existing structures prohibit construction of the full template (i.e., the maximum widths stated above). The first nourishment event would utilize 940,000 cubic yards of material (sand) acquired from an ocean borrow site.

Material would be acquired from the ocean borrow site utilizing a hopper dredge with pump-out facilities. The hopper dredge would transport material to the seaward end of a submerged pipe approximately ¼ mile offshore and pump the material to the project site. The discharge pipe would be repositioned throughout construction so that the total pump-out distance does not exceed 1 mile. Heavy machinery, such as bulldozers, would be used to shape the material to the beach design template. Construction of the initial nourishment project would be expected to require 4 months to complete and work would occur 24 hours per day, 7 days per week.

The County is requesting a 15-year permit and requests authorization to conduct beach re-nourishment, on an as-needed basis, to maintain the beach design template. The frequency and extent of periodic maintenance required after the initial nourishment would vary depending upon the frequency, intensity, and proximity of tropical storms each year.

AVOIDANCE AND MINIMIZATION INFORMATION – The applicant has provided the following information in support of efforts to avoid and/or minimize impacts to the aquatic environment:

The proposed beach fill design would not exceed the shoreline that existed prior to Hurricane Opal in 1995. Additionally, the applicant states that there are no seagrasses or other important benthic communities within the re-nourishment area or borrow site.

COMPENSATORY MITIGATION – The applicant has offered the following compensatory mitigation plan to offset unavoidable functional loss to the aquatic environment:

The applicant states that there are no seagrasses or other important benthic communities within the re-nourishment areas or borrow site, therefore, compensatory mitigation is not warranted.

CULTURAL RESOURCES: The Corps is not aware of any known historic properties within the permit area. By copy of this public notice, the Corps is providing information for review. Our final determination relative to historic resource impacts is subject to review by and coordination with the State Historic Preservation Officer and those federally recognized tribes with concerns in Florida and the Permit Area.

ENDANGERED SPECIES: The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) has made the following determinations regarding threatened and/or endangered species known to occur within the vicinity of the proposed project and their designated critical habitat (DCH):

West Indian manatee (Trichechus manatus): The Corps has determined that the proposed project may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect the endangered West Indian manatee. The Corps will initiate consultation with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act, regarding potential effects the proposed project may have on the manatee.

Gulf sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrinchus desotoi): The Corps has determined that the proposed project may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect the threatened Gulf sturgeon. The effects of the proposed project on Gulf sturgeon are considered by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Biological Opinion for Dredging of Gulf of Mexico Navigation Channels and Sand Mining (“Borrow”) Areas Using Hopper Dredges by COE Galveston, New Orleans, Mobile, and Jacksonville Districts (Consultation Number F/SER/2000/01287), referred to as the Gulf of Mexico Regional Biological Opinion (GRBO). The effects of the proposed work have been considered by the GRBO and no further consultation is necessary for Gulf sturgeon.

Gulf sturgeon Designated Critical Habitat (DCH): The Corps has determined that the proposed project may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect, Gulf sturgeon designated critical habitat Unit 11 (Nearshore Gulf of Mexico). The discharge of dredged material into Gulf sturgeon designated critical habitat is not considered by the GRBO. The Corps will initiate consultation with the National Marine Fisheries Service, pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act, regarding potential effects the proposed project may have on Gulf sturgeon DCH Unit 11.

Piping plover (Charadrius melodius): The Corps has determined that the proposed project may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect the threatened Piping plover. The Corps will initiate consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act, regarding potential effects the proposed project may have on piping plover.

Rufa red knot (Calidris canutus rufa): The Corps has determined that the proposed project may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect the threatened rufa subspecies of the red knot. The Corps will initiate consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act, regarding potential effects the proposed project may have on rufa red knot.

Sea turtles (nesting): The Corps has determined that the project may affect, and is likely to adversely affect the following federally listed sea turtles that could potentially utilize the project area for nesting: the threatened Loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta), endangered Green turtle (Chelonia mydas), endangered Leatherback turtle (Dermochelys coriacea), and endangered Kemp’s Ridley Sea turtle (Lepidochelys kempii). Sea turtle nesting activity and nests (i.e., on the beach) are within the purview of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The effects of the proposed project on nesting sea turtles are considered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Statewide Programmatic Biological Opinion (SPBO), dated August 22, 2011, for the Corps of Engineers, for shore protection activities along the coast of Florida. Okaloosa County would implement the Terms and Conditions of the SPBO. The potential effects on nesting sea turtles have been considered by the SPBO and no further consultation is necessary for nesting sea turtles.

Sea turtles (open water): The Corps has determined that the project may affect, and is likely to adversely affect the following federally listed sea turtles in the marine environment: the threatened Loggerhead turtle (Caretta caretta), endangered Green turtle (Chelonia mydas), endangered Kemp’s Ridley Sea turtle (Lepidochelys kempii), and endangered Hawksbill sea turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata). Sea turtles in marine and estuarine waters are within the purview of the National Marine Fisheries Service. The effects of the proposed in-water work on sea turtles are considered by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Biological Opinion for Dredging of Gulf of Mexico Navigation Channels and Sand Mining (“Borrow”) Areas Using Hopper Dredges by COE Galveston, New Orleans, Mobile, and Jacksonville Districts (Consultation Number F/SER/2000/01287), referred to as the Gulf of Mexico Regional Biological Opinion (GRBO). Okaloosa County would implement the Terms and Conditions of the GRBO. The potential effects on sea turtles have been considered by the GRBO and no further consultation is necessary for sea turtles in open waters.

Smalltooth sawfish (Pristis pectinata): The Corps has determined that the proposed project may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect the endangered smalltooth sawfish. The effects of the proposed project on smalltooth sawfish are considered by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Biological Opinion for Dredging of Gulf of Mexico Navigation Channels and Sand Mining (“Borrow”) Areas Using Hopper Dredges by COE Galveston, New Orleans, Mobile, and Jacksonville Districts (Consultation Number F/SER/2000/01287), referred to as the Gulf of Mexico Regional Biological Opinion (GRBO). The effects of the proposed work on smalltooth sawfish have been considered by the GRBO and no further consultation is necessary for this species.

ESSENTIAL FISH HABITAT (EFH): This notice initiates consultation with the National Marine Fisheries Service on EFH as required by the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act 1996. The proposal would impact marine subtidal and intertidal habitat utilized by various life stages of 12 shark species (scalloped hammerhead, bonnethead, finetooth, tiger, nurse, blacktip, bull, spinner, Atlantic sharpnose, blacknose, sandbar, great hammerhead), four shrimp species (brown, white, pink, Royal red), coastal migratory pelagic species, and 43 species of reef fish. Our initial determination is that the proposed action would not have a substantial adverse impact on EFH or Federally managed fisheries in the Gulf of Mexico. Our final determination relative to project impacts and the need for mitigation measures is subject to review by and coordination with the National Marine Fisheries Service.

NOTE: This public notice is being issued based on information furnished by the applicant. This information has not been verified or evaluated to ensure compliance with laws and regulation governing the regulatory program. The jurisdictional line has not been verified by Corps personnel.

AUTHORIZATION FROM OTHER AGENCIES: Water Quality Certification may be required from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection and/or one of the state Water Management Districts.

COMMENTS regarding the potential authorization of the work proposed should be submitted in writing to the attention of the District Engineer through the Pensacola Permits Section, 41 North Jefferson Street, Suite 301, Pensacola, Florida, 32502, within 21 days from the date of this notice.

The decision whether to issue or deny this permit application will be based on the information received from this public notice and the evaluation of the probable impact to the associated wetlands. This is based on an analysis of the applicant's avoidance and minimization efforts for the project, as well as the compensatory mitigation proposed.

QUESTIONS concerning this application should be directed to the project manager, Shayne Hayes, in writing at the Pensacola Permits Section, 41 North Jefferson Street, Suite 301, Pensacola, Florida, 32502; by electronic mail at terry.s.hayes@usace.army.mil; by facsimile transmission at (850)433-8160; or, by telephone at (850)433-8859.

IMPACT ON NATURAL RESOURCES: Coordination with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the National Marine Fisheries Services, and other Federal, State, and local agencies, environmental groups, and concerned citizens generally yields pertinent environmental information that is instrumental in determining the impact the proposed action will have on the natural resources of the area.

EVALUATION: The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impact including cumulative impacts of the proposed activity on the public interest. That decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources. The benefits, which reasonably may be expected to accrue from the proposal, must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments. All factors which may be relevant to the proposal will be considered including cumulative impacts thereof; among these are conservation, economics, esthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, historical properties, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, floodplain values, land use, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food, and fiber production, mineral needs, considerations of property ownership, and in general, the needs and welfare of the people. Evaluation of the impact of the activity on the public interest will also include application of the guidelines promulgated by the Administrator, EPA, under authority of Section 404(b) of the Clean Water Act or the criteria established under authority of Section 102(a) of the Marine Protection Research and Sanctuaries Act of 1972. A permit will be granted unless its issuance is found to be contrary to the public interest.

The US Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) is soliciting comments from the public; Federal, State, and local agencies and officials; Indian Tribes; and other Interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the impacts of this proposed activity. Any comments received will be considered by the Corps to determine whether to issue, modify, condition, or deny a permit for this proposal. To make this determination, comments are used to assess impacts to endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects, and the other public interest factors listed above. Comments are also used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity.

COASTAL ZONE MANAGEMENT CONSISTENCY: In Florida, the State approval constitutes compliance with the approved Coastal Zone Management Plan. In Puerto Rico, a Coastal Zone Management Consistency Concurrence is required from the Puerto Rico Planning Board. In the Virgin Islands, the Department of Planning and Natural Resources permit constitutes compliance with the Coastal Zone Management Plan.

REQUEST FOR PUBLIC HEARING: Any person may request a public hearing. The request must be submitted in writing to the District Engineer within the designated comment period of the notice and must state the specific reasons for requesting the public hearing.

Jacksonville District Okaloosa County permit public notice U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE)