The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Jacksonville District, announces a public meeting scheduled for May 2 in Kissimmee regarding the East Lake Tohopekaliga Drawdown and Habitat Enhancement (East Lake Toho) Draft Environmental Impact Statement (Draft EIS).
The Draft EIS evaluates environmental effects of alternatives associated with a Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) Regulatory permit application to lower the water level in the lake to facilitate removal of vegetation and other organic material in approximately 100 acres of littoral zone, and prescribed burning of roughly 200 acres of exotic vegetation. Project benefits include the reduction of organic sediment and nuisance vegetation; improved recreational fishery habitat and water quality in the littoral zone; improved foraging habitat for the Everglades Snail Kite; and improved navigation and boat access around the lake. Spoil material would be stored in two in-lake disposal islands totaling approximately six acres.
The meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. on May 2 at Osceola Heritage Park, 1921 Kissimmee Valley Lane in Kissimmee.
Special Directions: Entrance from 441 is not open (looks like the best way to go from Google maps). Take 441 to Bill Beck Blvd. Make left onto Heritage Park Way, then first left on Chief Osceola Trail, then first right onto Kissimmee Valley Lane, and the facility will be on your right and parking on your left.
The proposed activity is regulated through USACE, pursuant to Section 404 of the Clean Water Act (33 United States Code [U.S.C.] § 1344), Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 (33 U.S.C. § 403) and Section 14 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 (33 U.S.C § 408). Additional authority is provided in 33 C.F.R. § 222.5, Water Control Management. The East Lake Toho Draft EIS will be used to inform the public and agency decision-makers of FWC’s East Lake Toho Habitat Enhancement Project alternatives and effects on the quality of the human environment.
The Environmental Protection Agency published the Notice of Availability (NOA) in the Federal Register on April 12, 2019 and it can be viewed at: www.federalregister.gov/documents/2019/04/12/2019-07285/environmental-impact-statements-notice-of-availabilit.
The East Lake Toho Draft EIS is currently available on the Corps’ Jacksonville District website at: www.saj.usace.army.mil/Missions/Regulatory/Items-of-Interest/
Scroll down to the East Lake Tohopekaliga Drawdown Environmental Impact Statement heading for additional information. Alternatively, click on the links below:
East Lake Tohopekaliga (ELT) Drawdown Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)
Note: large files may take a few minutes to download
ELT DRAFT EIS
(Posted April 2, 2019)
A hardcopy of the East Lake Toho Draft EIS is available at both the Cocoa Permits Section office (400 High Point Drive, Suite 600, Cocoa, FL 32926) and the St. Cloud Civic Center (3001 17th Street, St. Cloud, FL 34769).
Interested parties are invited to submit comments on the East Lake Toho Draft EIS to the Corps by May 27, 2019.
- Comments may be submitted by email to: Jeffrey.S.Collins@usace.army.mil. All comments should include “East Lake Tohopekaliga Draft EIS Comments” in the subject line.
- Comments may also be submitted by mail or hand-delivered to: Jeffrey S. Collins, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Cocoa Permits Section, 400 High Point Drive, Suite 600, Cocoa, FL 32926.
Questions about the Proposed Action and East Lake Toho Draft EIS should be directed to Mr. Collins at 321-504-3771 or by email: Jeffrey.S.Collins@usace.army.mil.