Public Notice Notifications

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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.

SAJ-2009-04102 (SP-MAO)

Published Feb. 21, 2018
Expiration date: 3/23/2018
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) as described below:

APPLICANT:  Florida Department of Transportation, District 7
                       Attn: Virginia Creighton
                       11201 North McKinley Drive
                       Tampa, FL 33612

WATERWAY AND LOCATION: The project would affect waters of the United States associated with Bayou Branch. The project site is located along State Road 52 from Uradco Place to Bayou Branch and Prospect road to Ft. King Road in Sections 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12, Township 25 South, Range 20 East and Sections 5,6, 7, 8, 9, and 10, Township 25 South, Range 21 East, San Antonio, Pasco County, Florida.

Directions to the site are as follows: Take I-75 exit 285 east on to State Road 52 and travel approximately 0.20 miles to the start of the project corridor at Pasco Road.

                                                                          Longitude -82.248783°


Basic: Transportation

Overall: Roadway capacity, alignment, and safety improvements for State Road 52 in central Pasco County.

EXISTING CONDITIONS: The wetland system consists of a freshwater, emergent marsh system, forested systems, wet prairies, and surface waters. The onsite vegetation consists of dollarweed (Hydrocotle sp.), Peruvian primrose willow (Ludwigia peruviana), sedge (Carex sp.), carpetgrass (Axonopus affinis), bahia grass (Paspalum notatum), beaksedges (Rhynchospora spp.), flatsedges (Cyperus spp.), water pepper (Polygonum sp.), red maple (Acer rubrum), coastalplain willow (Salix caroliniana), cogongrass (Imperata cylindrica), Brazilian pepper (Schinus terebithifolius), sweetgum (Liquidambar styraciflua), soft rush (Juncus effusus), maidencane (Panicum hemitomon), arrowhead (Sagittaria latifolia), bald cypress (Taxodium distichum), and muscadine grape (Vitus spp.). The existing area surrounding the project area consists of low-density residential parcels, agricultural lands, silviculture land, and some commercial areas.

PROPOSED WORK: The applicant seeks authorization to expand and realign a segment of State Road 52. The project will result in the discharge of 94, 708 cubic yards of fill over 2.90 acres of wetlands and surface waters.

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:

This project is in conformance with Executive Order 11990. Wetland impacts have been considered throughout the planning, evaluation and design of this project. The Pasco County Route Study resulted in a preferred alignment that emphasizes existing roads, ROW, and safety concerns, while also avoiding conflicts with local comprehensive plans and Williams Cemetery. Another alignment, known as Alignment 2/4, would have resulted in 1.5 acres less direct wetland impact but would have bifurcated a larger wetland system and created sharper, less-safe curves than the selected alignment.

FDOT further evaluated additional options during the PD&E and design stages of this project. The PD&E study considered a slight modification to shift a portion of the alignment northward near wetland WL 3 to minimize impacts to that wetland. However, this modification would have resulted in an unsafe curve that would increase the risk for vehicular accidents, particularly for trucks. Environmental review during design also included a route that would have entailed a more- direct alignment roughly between STA 320 and STA 440. Based on ecological evaluation, this modified alignment would have resulted in substantially greater direct and secondary wetland impacts due to filling and bifurcating portions of the extensive riparian wetland system adjoining the northwestern shoreline of Lake Pasadena.

The siting and design of stormwater management facilities and floodplain compensation sites also reflects avoidance and minimization of wetland impacts. FDOT conducted hydrobiological evaluation of wetland seasonal high-water levels (SHWL) and geotechnical investigation of seasonal high groundwater levels. All SMFs are set with the control elevation at or above nearby wetland SHWL to avoid drainage gradients that would dewater wetlands. Additional, de minimis temporary impacts will occur at WL1, WL 6, and the north section of Bayou Branch during construction of drainage connections from adjacent SMF and/or FPC sites. These impacts will only be temporary; the near-edge conditions at these locations are already disturbed and are therefore anticipated to return to pre-construction conditions.

The project will be constructed in accordance with the Clean Water Action Section 404 water quality certification, and BMPs will be implemented during construction to avoid water quality degradation. Construction impacts to wetlands and surface waters will be minimized through the implementation of FDOT’s standard measures for the prevention, control and abatement of erosion and water pollution (Section 104 of Standard Specifications for Road and Bridge Construction). This includes development and implementation of a Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan; submittal and SWFWMD pre-construction review of the contractor’s Erosion Control Plan; installation of temporary and permanent erosion control features; construction protocols to minimize siltation of surface waters; and installation and maintenance of turbidity controls.

As a result of the wetland impact avoidance and minimization process and procedures described above, this project will impact only 2.55 acres of wetlands and surface waters, representing 1% of the project area or 0.36 acre per mile of this 7-mile project. Based on the above considerations, there are no practicable alternatives to the proposed construction in wetlands, and the proposed action includes all practicable measures to minimize harm to wetlands that may result from proposed roadway construction. It was determined the proposed design represents the minimum amount of fill required in order to achieve the project purpose and meet the FDOT’s safety criteria and drainage requirements.

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

The purpose of wetland mitigation is to comply with agency regulatory requirements to provide compensation for wetland impacts by restoring, creating, enhancing, and/or preserving wetlands. Mitigation for unavoidable wetland impacts totaling 2.55 acres and 1.537 UMAM units for jurisdictional wetlands associated with this project will be provided via permittee-responsible mitigation specifically through the FDOT’s wetland mitigation inventory to satisfy all mitigation requirements of Part IV, Chapter 373.4137 F.S., and U.S.C. 1344. The project is proposed to be mitigated at the Conner Preserve site.


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.


The Corps has determined the proposed project may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect the wood stork (Mycteria americana) and eastern indigo snake (Drymarchon corais couperi) or their designated critical habitat. The Corps utilized programmatic keys to make the determinations and FDOT has provided a concurrence letter from U.S. Fish and Wildlife pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act.

The Corps has determined the proposal would have no effect on the Florida scrub jay (Aphelocoma coerulescens) and red-cockaded woodpecker (Picoides borealis) and their designated critical habitat. The habits present along the project corridor are not suitable nesting or foraging habitats for the species. FDOT provided a concurrence letter from FWS for this determination.

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 Michael Ornella at P.O. Box 4970, Jacksonville, FL 32232-0019 within 30 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, Michael Ornella, in writing at the Panama City Permits Section, P.O. Box 4970, Jacksonville, FL 32232; by electronic mail at; by facsimile transmission at (904)232-1904; or, by telephone at (904)232-1498.

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.