US Army Corps of Engineers
Jacksonville District

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SAJ-2019-03069(SP-GGM)

Published Oct. 8, 2019
Expiration date: 11/6/2019

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 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 (33 U.S.C. §403) as described below:

 

APPLICANT:  Richard A. Eten

                       2061 Coral Way

                       Big Pine Key, FL 33043

 

WATERWAY AND LOCATION:  The project would affect waters of the United States associated with the Atlantic Ocean.  The project site is a developed single family residence lot located at 2061 Coral Way, immediately adjacent to waters of the Florida Bay; legally described as Block 07, Lots 21 and 22 of Doctors ARM subdivision 1st addition; PB4-149; in Section 14, Township 66 South, Range 29 East, Big Pine Key, Monroe County, Florida 33043. (RE# 00312220-000000) (MM± 30.2-Bay).

 

Directions to the site are as follows:  From Miami, drive south on U.S. 1, Overseas Highway, to approximately mile marker 30.2; turn right onto Key Deer Boulevard and drive for approximately 1.7 miles, turn right at Watson Boulevard and follow the road for approximately .7 miles onto State Road 4A, then turn left at Mathew Road, then right at Minorca Drive and follow the road to the end.  The project site is located directly across the street from Minorca Drive at 2061 Coral Way.

 

APPROXIMATE CENTRAL COORDINATES:    Latitude      24.70177° North

                                                                            Longitude  -81.348857° West

 

PROJECT PURPOSE:

Basic:  The basic project purpose is to construct a dock and install two boatlifts to provide additional motorized boating access to the property.

Overall:  The overall project purpose is for the construction of a dock and boatlifts to provide additional motorized boating access to a single family residence in Big Pine Key, Monroe County, Florida.

 

EXISTING CONDITIONS:  The property is located within a developed subdivision of Big Pine Key. The property consist of two lots, one is developed with a single family residence and the other lot is vacant.  The entire shoreline of the property is armored with a riprap retaining wall.  There is an existing unauthorized marginal wood dock. Currently, there are no other docks extending waterward from the shoreline as far as the subject proposed dock.  If approved, this will be the first dock extending this far out from the shoreline into the waterway on this area.  The existing riprap armored shoreline transitions into sandy benthos over caprock followed by seagrass intermixed with macroalgae.  There is a distance of approximately 70 linear feet from the property’s shoreline to the edge of the Boogie channel. A benthic survey submitted to the Corps did not identified any corals within the project area.  Identified seagrasses within the project area included Thallasia testudinum, Halodule wrightii and Syringodium filiforme.

 

PROPOSED WORK:  The applicant seeks authorization to construct a 1,300-square feet (ft²) wood dock,  to install two (2) cradle boatlifts with four (4) supporting piles at the end of the proposed dock’s terminal platform and to seek an after the fact authorization for the existing 192 ft² marginal wood dock, as depicted on the attached drawings(5 pages). Temporary turbidity curtains will be deployed for the duration of all construction activities, in/over waters of the United States. Work is in U.S. navigable waters in accordance with the enclosed site plans (5 pages).

 

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:

Temporary turbidity curtains will be deployed for the duration of all construction activities, in/over waters of the United States.

Additionally, the applicant has designed the proposed dock as to adhere to the Florida Dock Construction Guidelines.

 

COMPENSATORY MITIGATION – The applicant has offered the following compensatory mitigation plan to offset unavoidable functional loss to the aquatic environment: If mitigation is required by the Army Corps of Engineers the appropriate mitigation will be determined with a UMAM and payment made to Keys Restoration Fund.

 

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 determined the project may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect (“MANLAA”) the West Indian manatee (Trichechus manatus).  Since the proposal by the applicant is for in-water construction, potential impacts to the endangered West Indian manatee were evaluated using The Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District, and the State of Florida Effect Determination Key for the Manatee in Florida, April 2013 (Key).  Use of the Key resulted in the following sequential determination:  A > B > C > G > H > I > N > 0 > P (4), may affect, not likely to adversely affect “MANLAA”.  This determination is partially based on the implementation of the Standard Manatee Conditions for In-Water Work, 2011.  By letter dated April 25, 2013, the Corps received concurrence from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) regarding MANLAA determinations for the West Indian manatee in accordance with 50 CFR 402.14(b)1 and pursuant to the Key.  No further coordination with the FWS is required.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) has determined the project may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect (“MANLAA”) the American crocodile (Crocodylus acutus).

The project is located within American crocodile (Crocodylus acutus) consultation area.  According to the 28 October 2014 American Crocodile Key, the property does not support suitable nesting habitat for the crocodile. Use of the Key resulted in the sequence #2 may affect, not likely to adversely affect. Therefore, the Corps has reached a “may affect not likely to adversely affect” determination on the American crocodile and its suitable nesting habitat.

The real estate parcel number is 00312220-000000 and is on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Suitable Habitat List, dated August 2010, for Monroe County for the following species: Eastern Indigo snake (Drymarchon corais couperi) Focus Area, the Key Deer (Odocoileus virginianus clavium) Focus Area, the Lower Keys marsh rabbit (Sylvilagus palustris hefneri) and Silver rice rat (Oryzomys palustris natator) 500 m focus area buffer. 

The subject parcel is listed on the FWS 2011 Suitable Habitat List as being located within the focus area for the eastern indigo snake (Drymarchon corais couperi).  Potential impacts to the aforementioned species and its habitat were evaluated using the eastern indigo snake key (key) dated 1 August 2017.  Use of the key resulted in the following sequential determination:  A > (1) “no effect”” for the snake.  Therefore, no incidental take will occur, and no further consultation with the FWS is required.

Potential impacts for the Lower Keys marsh rabbit (LKMR) were evaluated using the Species Assessment Guide, dated July 29, 2013, and resulted in the following sequential determination:  A>F (2) “may affect, but not likely to adversely affect” NLAA.  This determination is partially based on the applicant being provided the cat brochure. The Corps received programmatic concurrence from the FWS for projects that have a “NLAA” determination; therefore, no incidental take will occur and no further consultation with the FWS is required.

Potential impacts to the silver rice rat (SRR) were evaluated using the Silver Rice Rat (Oryzomys palustris natator) Species Assessment Guide dated July 29, 2013, and resulted in the following sequential determination: A >E (2), “may affect, but not likely to adversely affect” NLAA.  This determination is partially based on the applicant being provided the cat brochure. The Corps received programmatic concurrence from the FWS for projects that have a “NLAA” determination; therefore, no incidental take will occur and no further consultation with the FWS is required.

The Corps has determined the proposed project may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect (“MANLAA”) the swimming green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas), loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta) and their critical habitat, hawksbill sea turtles (Eretmochelys imbricata), kemps ridley sea turtles (Lepidochelys kempii), leatherback sea turtles (Dermochelys coriacea), and the smalltooth sawfish (Pristis pectinata), Nassau Grouper  (Epinephelus striatus) species. A no effect determination was reached on smalltooth sawfish critical habitat, Acorpora sp. and its designated critical habitat and corals species; (Dendrogyra cylindrus, Orbicella annularis, Orbicella faveolata, Orbicella franksi, Mycetophyllia ferox). The Corps will request National Marine Fisheries Service concurrence with these determinations 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 1,893 square feet of submerged aquatic resources utilized by various life stages of land and marine species. Our initial determination is that the proposed action would not have a substantial adverse impact on EFH or Federally managed fisheries in the Florida Keys.  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 Miami Permits Section, 9900 Southwest 107th Avenue, Suite 203, Miami, Florida, 33176, within 30 days from the date of this notice (i.e. on or before November 6, 2019).

 

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, Gletys Guardia-Montoya at the letterhead address, by electronic mail at Gletys.Guardia-Montoya@usace.army.mil, or by telephone at 305-526-2515. 

 

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.