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: James and Eleanor Dan
430 Rainbow Street
Lehigh Acres, Florida 33974
WATERWAY AND LOCATION: The project would affect waters of the United States associated with the Atlantic Ocean. The project site is located at 22914 Buccaneer Lane, immediately adjacent to a 40’ wide man-made canal, tributary to the Atlantic Ocean; legally described as Block 22, Lot 23 of Cutthroat Harbor Estates subdivision; PB4-165; in Section 28, Township 66 South, Range 28 East, Cudjoe Key, Monroe County, Florida 33042. (RE# 00181480-000000) (MM± 23-Ocean).
Directions to the site are as follows: From Miami, drive south on U.S. 1 Overseas Highway to approximately mile marker 23; turn left onto Cutthroat Drive, right onto Jolly Rodger Drive and left at Buccaneer Lane. The project site would be an undeveloped parcel on the right hand of the road, adjacent to 22882 Buccaneer Lane.
APPROXIMATE CENTRAL COORDINATES: Latitude 24.659729° North
Longitude 81.476346° West
Basic: The basic project purpose is to construct a single-family residence with associated infrastructures and boating access.
Overall: The overall project purpose is for the development of a single-family residence with a dock for boating access in Cudjoe Key, Monroe County, Florida.
EXISTING CONDITIONS: The property is located within a partially developed subdivision of Cudjoe Key, Monroe County, Florida. The property is situated between a developed lot on the west and an undeveloped lot with similar conditions to the subject parcel on the east. On the north, the property is bordered by a paved road, Buccaneer Lane, and on the south the parcel is immediately adjacent to a 40’ wide man-made canal that flows directly into the Atlantic Ocean. The project site is a jurisdictional wetland lot that supports approximately 100% vegetation coverage. The subject parcel is classified as a saltmarsh buttonwood dominated wetland lot listed on the ADID wetland list with a 3.55 score. Some of the wetland vegetation present on site included red mangrove (Rhizophora mangle), black mangrove (Avicennia germinans), green buttonwood (Conocarpus erectus) and Baycedar (Suriana maritima). A band of Brazilian-pepper (Schinus terebinthifolius) occurred on the parcel. Herbaceous wetland vegetation included samphire (Blutaparon vermiculare) and sea-oxeye-daisy (Borrichia arborescens). The shoreline is 100% vegetated with mature and shrub red mangrove (Rhizophora mangle), black mangrove (Avicennia germinans), and green buttonwood (Conocarpus erectus) creating a 20 foot-wide vegetated stand perimeter. Submerged aquatic resources include prop roots; these resources confer approximately 50% coverage on the canal bottom at the project site.
PROPOSED WORK: The applicant seeks authorization to place 105 cubic yards (y³) of clean fill material within in 5,695 square feet (ft²) of jurisdictional wetlands for the construction of a residence and associated appurtenances; to install a 320 ft² (40 foot long by 8 foot wide) marginal concrete dock with ten supporting concrete pilings; to install a set of concrete davit pads; to install approximately 120 linear feet of limerock boulders along the shoreline and on the east end of the property line and to install temporary filter fencing to isolate the construction site from adjacent U.S. waters, including adjacent wetlands; as depicted on the enclosed drawings (6 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 (6 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.
Temporary filter fencing will be install prior to the discharge of any fill material as to prevent the spillage of fill material into the adjacent wetlands.
Additionally, the applicant proposes to avoid and preserve in perpetuity 175 ft² area of wetland vegetation.
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 00181480-000000 and is on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Suitable Habitat List, dated August 2010, for Monroe County for the following species Focus Area: Eastern Indigo snake (Drymarchon corais couperi) the Lower Keys marsh rabbit (Sylvilagus palustris hefneri) and Silver rice rat (Oryzomys palustris natator).
Potential impacts to the Eastern indigo snake (Drymarchon corais couperi) 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 > B > C > D > E (1), “may affect, not likely to adversely affect (NLAA)” the snake. This determination was based on the permit being conditioned for use of the Service’s most current guidance for Standard Protection Measures for The Easter Indigo Snake (currently 2013) during site preparation and project construction. Pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act, no further consultation with the Service is required.
Potential impacts to the Lower Keys marsh rabbit (Sylvilagus palustris hefneri) and its habitat were evaluated using the respective FWS Species Assessment Guides (SAGs) dated 29 July 2013. Use of the SAGs resulted in the following sequential determination: A > B > C > D (2), “may affect, not likely to adversely affect (NLAA)” the marsh rabbit. This determination is based on the applicant mitigating for proposed removal of the species’ native habitat, the property being within a developed canal subdivision and the area within 500 feet of the parcel is greater than 60 percent developed or scarified. Pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act, no further consultation with the Service is required.
The subject parcel is listed on the FWS 2011 Suitable Habitat List as being located within the focus area for the silver rice rat (Oryzomys palustris natator). Potential impacts to the aforementioned species and its critical habitat were evaluated using the respective FWS Species Assessment Guides (SAGs) dated 29 July 2013. Use of the
SAGs resulted in the following sequential determination: A > B > C > E (2), “may affect, not likely to adversely affect (NLAA)” the rice rat. This determination is based on the property being within a developed canal subdivision and the area within 500 feet of the parcel is greater than 60 percent developed or scarified, as well as the proposal being for a new residence with enforceable cat restrictions and the cat brochure being provided. Although the subject parcel is not located within the designated critical habitat, use of the SAGs resulted in the following sequential determination: A > B > C >
D (1), “NLAA” the rice rat’s critical habitat. This determination is based on the applicant proposing removal of the species’ native habitat and the property not containing or being adjacent to contiguous tracts of the species’ native habitat greater than one acre in size, the permit being conditioned with habitat compensation, and the cat brochure being provided. Pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act, no further consultation with the Service is required.
The Google Earth Resource at Risk (RAR) report for the subject parcel includes the
Key deer (Odocoileus virginianus clavium). Potential impacts to the aforementioned species and its habitat were evaluated using the respective FWS Species Assessment
Guides (SAGs) dated 29 July 2013. Use of the SAGs resulted in the following sequential determination: A > B > C > E > F > G > H > I (1), “may affect, not likely to adversely affect (NLAA)” the deer. This determination is based on the proposed action removing native habitat, the property not being greater than one acre in size or being adjacent to contiguous native habitat greater than one acre in size, the applicant proposing either on-site or off-site habitat compensation commensurate with the amount of native habitat lost, and the proposed action not including fencing. Pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act, no further consultation with the Service is required.
The Google Earth Resource at Risk (RAR) report for the subject parcel includes the piping plover (Charadrius melodus) consultation area. Potential impacts to the piping plover were evaluated using the Programmatic Piping Plover Biological Opinion (BO), dated May 22, 2013. Using the BO resulted in the Corps making a “no effect” determination for the piping plover. This determination is based on there being no sandy beaches within the project area, as well as the project not being located within a designated piping plover Critical Habitat Unit or areas that are considered optimal piping plover habitat; therefore, no further consultation with the FWS is required.
The Google Earth Resource at Risk (RAR) report for the subject parcel includes the roseate tern (Sterna dougallii) consultation area. The Corps has determined the proposed project will have “no effect” on the roseate tern. This determination is partially
based on roseates being highly sensitive to disturbances, such as human activity, making developed areas undesirable for nesting, and protected areas, such as the Key West National Wildlife Refuge, the more desirable location for nesting and foraging.
The Corps has determined the proposed project may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect the swimming green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas), loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta) and its designated critical habitat, hawksbill sea turtles
(Eretmochelys imbricata), Kemp’s ridley sea turtles (Lepidochelys kempii), leatherback sea turtles (Dermochelys coriacea), and the smalltooth sawfish (Pristis pectinata) species. A no effect determination was reached on smalltooth sawfish designated critical habitat, Acropora spp. (Acropora cervicornis and Acropora palmata) and its designated critical habitat, and listed coral species: pillar coral (Dendrogyra cylindrus), lobed star coral (Orbicella annularis), mountainous star coral (Orbicella faveolata), boulder star coral (Orbicella franksi), and rough cactus coral (Mycetophyllia ferox). The
Corps will request National Marine Fisheries Service concurrence with this determination pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act via separate consultation.
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 6,015 square feet of wetland 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 21 days from the date of this notice (i.e. on or before March 31, 2020).
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.