Public Notice Notifications

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SAJ-2000-00050 (SP-RGH)

Published Jan. 24, 2020
Expiration date: 2/23/2020

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: Isaac Brownman
Public Works Director, Town of Longboat Key
600 General Harris Street
Longboat Key, Florida 34228

WATERWAY AND LOCATION: The project would affect waters of the United States associated with Sarasota Bay. The project site is located within Longboat Key, in Sections 15, 22, 23, 24, 25, & 36, Township 35 South, Range 16 East; Sections 5, 8, 21, 22, & 27, Township 36 South, Range 17 East, Longboat Key, Manatee County, Florida.

Directions to the site are as follows: As the proposed project involves residential canals, project sites area generally accessible by boat. There are public boat ramps on the north (Coquina Beach South Boat Ramp) and south (Ken Thompson Boat Ramp) ends of Longboat Key. To access these ramps, from I-75 S take exit 228 to I-275 N, travel for 1 mile, then take exit 2 to US-41 S/Tamiami Trail. Continue for about 7 miles, then h1rn right onto FL-64 W/Manatee Avenue. From there, drive for 4.5 miles, tum left onto 75th Street W, travel for 2.3 miles then turn right onto SR 684/Cortez Rd. Continue straight for 4 miles, then turn left onto Gulf Drive N. Going straight through any roundabout, travel for about 1.5 miles. The entrance to the Coquina Beach South Boat Ramp will be on your left. To get to Ken Thompson Boat Ramp, continue past Coquina Beach for another 10.8 miles. Turn left onto Ken Thompson Parkway, drive for 0.4 mile, take a right, and the ramp will be straight ahead.















































Basic: Maintenance Dredge.
Overall: Maintenance Dredge residential canals within Longboat Key.

EXISTING CONDITIONS: The existing canals are in various stages of silting in since the last maintenance dredge effort was permitted in 2000. Seagrass has recolonized some parts of the proposed dredge footprint. The existing area surrounding the project area consists of residential homes with docks with some mangroves.

PROPOSED WORK: Applicant proposes to perform the maintenance dredging of 14 residential canals in the Town of Longboat Key, Sarasota & Manatee Counties, Florida. The proposed maintenance dredging to remove about 9,053 cubic yards (yd3) of material from 14 existing residential canals, located along the length of the Longboat Key. Natural resources within the project dredging vicinity include seagrasses and oyster reefs. To avoid and minimize impacts to those resources to the extent practicable the dredge template has been refined to reflect a range of bottom cut widths. The residential canals will be dredged to a maximum depth of – 5ft Mean Lower Low Water (MLLW) or previously authorized depth with bottom cut widths ranging from 0 feet (ft) to 30 ft depending on the existing channel alignment, available space, and presence of natural resources, for a total of 4.43 acres (including side-slopes). Some areas of seagrasses could not be avoided while maintaining safe navigation; 7 of the 14 canals may result in seagrass impacts of approximately 1.37 acres. Canal dredging will be performed by mechanical means. Contractor equipment will be stored along a designated area at Overlook Park. The sediment will be mechanically dredged, placed into a shallow draft hopper barge, and transported by barge to the east side of Sarasota Bay for placement within a designated mitigation area. The work is expected to require approximately 6–8 months.

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:  Seagrass impacts were avoided and minimized by adjusting the dredging widths within the canals as well as adjusting the proposed dredging footprint. However, the project will result in a total of approximately 1.37 acres of unavoidable seagrass impacts within 7 of the 14 canals. As part of this project, a mitigation site has been identified to compensate for seagrass impacts. No other impacts to listed species or habitat is anticipated.

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

Mitigation was designed to meet the assumed 2:1 mitigation to impact ratio typically requested by NOAA Fisheries Habitat Conservation Division (HCD). To mitigate for the seagrass impacts, the applicant has identified an abandoned channel located along the east side of the Sarasota Bay east of the North end of the key. The mitigation site is approximately 7.12 acres in size, with a bottom elevation of -10 ft North American Vertical Datum of 1988 (NAVD 88) (about 6 ft deeper than the adjacent bay bottom elevations), 2,000 ft long, and 150 to 200 ft wide.

Sediments dredged from the residential canals and other sources will fill 2.74 acres of the mitigation site to surrounding bottom elevations prior to seagrass planting (salvaged from the seagrass impact areas).

The mitigation site will require approximately 23,000 yd3 of fill to achieve suitable seagrass habitat elevations within the 2.74-acre mitigation area. Canal maintenance dredging will produce about 9,053 yd3 of fill. Material from a 20,000 yd3 upland stockpile of sediments from the recent Charlotte County Myakka River Dredging Project and/or other appropriate source is expected to provide the remaining fill. The Town will coordinate with the material owner to obtain and transport the necessary fill from the upland stockpile location to the project site. Sediment sampling of the dredged Charlotte County material, the Town of Longboat key canals, and the proposed seagrass mitigation site has been performed to evaluate material compatibility.

If used, the Charlotte County material will be truck-hauled to a designated stockpile area located on the south end of Longboat Key at Overlook Park. Material will be stored at Overlook Park until used by the selected contractor. Overlook Park will also provide an equipment staging area for the contractor. Overlook Park is within an FDOT right of way, situated on the northwest side of the New Pass bridge abutment. As the Charlotte County material has a higher fraction of fines (sediments passing a US #200 sieve) it will be placed at the mitigation area first. The coarser sediments from the Longboat Key canals will then cover the Charlotte County fill. Once the mitigation site has been filled to match the surrounding grade (approximately -4 feet-NAVD) and has settled sufficiently, the contractor will begin seagrass transplanting. The same construction sequence would occur if another source is used.

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 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) has determined the project “May affect, not likely to adversely affect” the West Indian manatee (Trichechus manatus). Potential impacts to the endangered manatee were evaluated using The Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District, and the State of Florida Effect Determination Key for the Manatee in Florida (Manatee Key), dated April 2013. Use of the Manatee Key resulted in the following sequential determination: (A>B>C>D>E>F>G>N>O>P: NLAA). Project is in an Important Manatee Area (IMA) and per the 2013 Manatee Key, dedicated observers shall be required for manatee observation and no night-time clamshell dredging will be allowed. Per Key stipulation, no further consultation with FWS is required.

The Corps has determined the proposed project “may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect” the smalltooth sawfish (Pristis pectinata), green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas), loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta), and Kemp’s ridley sea turtles (Lepidochelys kempii). The Corps will initiate programmatic consultation (JAXBO) via e-mail with National Marine Fisheries Service- Protected Resources Division. The Corps will provide certification that the project will be implemented in accordance with the Project Design Criterion (PDC) and certification that the net effects are consistent with those anticipated in the programmatic consultation document.

The Corps has determined the proposal would have no effect on Wood Stork (Mycteria Americana) and Piping Plover (Charadrius melodus).

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 4.43 acres of shallow residential man-made canal. Project site has SAV and oyster reef to be utilized by various life stages of postlarval, juvenile and subadult shrimp; postlarval, juvenile and adult red drum; postlarval, juvenile and adult gray snapper; juvenile red and gag groupers; and juvenile and adult yellowtail and lane snappers.

A field resource assessment of the project area was conducted on July 19, 2019 with the assistance of Mark Sramek (NMFS HDC) and observed seagrasses, oyster reef and mangroves. Approximately 1.37 acres of seagrass will be impacted.

Our initial determination is that the proposed action will have an adverse impact on EFH or federally managed fisheries in the Gulf of Mexico, however with the proposed seagrass mitigation area, the Corps believes that the project effects will be successfully offset. 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 Tampa Permits Section, 10117 Princess Palm Avenue, Suite 120, Tampa, Florida 33610-8302 within 21 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, Ryan Hendren, in writing at the Tampa Permits Section, 10117 Princess Palm Avenue, Suite 120, Tampa, Florida 33610-8302; by electronic mail at or, by telephone at 813-769-7075.

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.

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.