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: Volusia County
Attn: Thomas Morrissey, III
2269 West State Road 44
Deland, Florida 32720
WATERWAY AND LOCATION: The project would affect waters of the United States associated with Smith Creek which is a component of the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway (AICWW). The project site is located at 50 Highway Bridge Road, Volusia County, Florida.
Directions to the site are as follows: Knox Bridge carries High Bridge Road over Smith Creek. It connects Bulow Creek State Park on the mainland to the barrier island
community in unincorporated Volusia County, approximately 3.5 miles south of the Town of Flagler Beach. From I-95/Hwy 100, take Hwy 100 east, tum south on John Anderson Highway, go west on Walter Boardman Lane, then south on High
Bridge Road. Follow High Bridge Road east until you reach the bridge crossing.
APPROXIMATE CENTRAL COORDINATES:
Overall: Replace the existing subaqueous cable that provides electric power from one side of the bascule bridge to the other side for operation of bridge machinery.
EXISTING CONDITIONS: The project is located beneath a bascule bridge which crosses the AICWW. There are no known submerged aquatic resources at the specific project location.
PROPOSED WORK: The applicant seeks authorization to install a new cable between the bridge piers approximately 6 feet below the existing mudline (channel bottom), which is approximately 11.5 feet below the authorized dredge depth. The existing cable will be disconnected from the bridge piers and removed to 1 foot below the mudline. The remainder will be abandoned in place. A trench, approximately 24 feet wide, would be excavated with a clamshell digger, and the excavated material (approximately 320 cubic yards) will be placed on a barge. The cable will be installed in the trench, and the excavated material will be replaced over the cable. Turbidity barriers will be used to the extent possible (with minimal impacts to navigation) during excavation and replacement of fill to minimize turbidity.
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: Turbidity barriers will be used to minimize turbidity during excavation and backfilling of trench.
COMPENSATORY MITIGATION – The applicant has provided the following explanation why compensatory mitigation should not be required: The proposed work is limited to the replacement of a utility line required for bridge operation. No loss of waters of the United States are expected.
CULTURAL RESOURCES: The Corps has determined the permit area has been extensively modified by previous work and there is little likelihood a historic property may be affected.
ENDANGERED SPECIES: The Corps has determined the proposed project may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect the loggerhead sea turtle, leatherback sea turtle, green sea turtle, hawksbill sea turtle, Kemp’s ridley sea turtle, West Indian manatee, and smalltooth sawfish or designated critical habitat. The Corps will request U.S. Fish and Wildlife and National Marine Fishery Service concurrence with these determination pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act.
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 approximately
0.08 acres of estuarine areas (including sand/mud bottom and water column) utilized by various life stages of brown, white, and pink shrimp, sheepshead, crevalle jack, Atlantic spadefish, and cobia. Our initial determination is that the proposed action would not have a substantial adverse impact on EFH or Federally managed fisheries in Smith Creek. 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 Cocoa Permits
Section, 400 High Drive, Suite 600, Cocoa, Florida 32926 within 15 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,
Andrew Phillips, in writing at the Cocoa Permits Section, 400 High Drive, Suite 600,
Cocoa, Florida 32926; by electronic mail at email@example.com; by facsimile transmission at (321)504-3803; or, by telephone at (321)504-3771 extension
[OPTIONAL FOR ATF APPLICATIONS] ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: After reviewing all available information pertaining to the completed work, the Department of the Army has not recommended legal action at this time. Final determination regarding legal action will be made after review of the project through the permit procedure.
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.