Permits authorize minor projects in Florida,will expire without potential to renew
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (Nov. 4, 2011) – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District announced today that a number of Regional General Permits (RGP) issued since 2006 will expire Nov. 7 without the potential for an extension. Regional General Permits, which are used to authorize activities that are substantially similar in nature and cause only minimal individual and cumulative impacts, are reviewed every five years.
Activities that impact waters of the United States, including wetlands, are regulated by the Corps under Sec. 404 of the Clean Water Act of 1972 and Sec. 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899. Prior to undertaking an activity of this nature, the activity must be authorized with Department of the Army permits. Permits require consultation with other federal and state agencies, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration’s Fisheries Service, Florida Department of Environmental Protection and others to ensure all requirements of the Endangered Species Act, Marine Mammal Protection Act and other environmental laws are met. The use of national and regional general permits to authorize similar projects with minimal impacts helps to streamline the process for both the agencies and the permit applicants.
“The Corps is in the process of consulting with other agencies on the matter of potential impacts of RGP-authorized activities on endangered species,” explained Stuart Santos of Jacksonville District’s Regulatory Division. “Because of this ongoing consultation, we are unable to automatically renew the RGPs. We will authorize as many activities as possible with Nationwide Permits or Letters of Permission, but in some instances an application for a Standard Permit may be necessary.”
More than 2,200 authorizations have been issued under seven RGPs since 2006. Those holding an RGP that expires Nov. 7, 2011 for a project that is already under way or for which a construction contract has been signed have until Nov. 7, 2012 to complete the permitted project. The permits due to expire are:
SAJ-05 – Maintenance dredging of residential canals
SAJ-12 – Boat ramps
SAJ-13 – Aerial transmission lines
SAJ-14 – Subaqueous transmission lines
SAJ-17 – Minor structures
SAJ-34 – Commercial piers
SAJ-46 – Bulkheads and backfill in residential canals