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: Joseph McDevitt
1111 Thompson Ave
Severn MD 21144
WATERWAY AND LOCATION: The project would affect waters of the United States associated with the Atlantic Ocean. The project site is located at 65924 Overseas Highway; legally described as Long Key Bay Btm Sly and adj Pt Gov Lot 1 and Pt of Gov Lot 1 .23 ac upland in Section 07, Township 65 south, Range 35 east; Long Key, Monroe County, Florida (RE#00098860-000000).
Directions to the site are as follows: Take U.S. 1 South to U.S. 1; Continue on U.S. 1 South to MM65; Project is located at 65924 Overseas Hwy.
APPROXIMATE CENTRAL COORDINATES: Latitude 24.805816°
Basic: To provide boating access.
Overall: To provide boating access in the middle Keys, Florida.
EXISTING CONDITIONS: The property is situated between a single family residence, Overseas Highway, Long Key State Park, and the Atlantic Ocean. The shoreline supports an unconsolidated beach area which supports suitable sea turtle nesting habitat. A pile-supported swim platform has recently been constructed at the subject site. Pursuant to the benthic survey provided, turtle Grass patches and meadows are found scattered in the area and this sea grass is the dominant aquatic vegetation at the site. Macro algae vegetation occupies about 15% of the bottom area. There are three species of stony coral and one species of soft coral found in the proposed footprint of the walkway. No coral was found in the footprint or area around the proposed dock terminus. The small Siderastrea radians (Lesser Starlet Coral) and unattached Porites porites (Finger Coral), Oculina diffusa (Diffuse Ivory Coral) are found scattered within the footprint of the proposed walkway only in a 114 foot long zone along the walk. A single Pterogorgia ancepts (Angular Sea Whip) was found at the side of the proposed walk footprint at the 335 foot mark. Coral coverage is very sparse beneath the proposed narrow walkway. The remaining area under the proposed walkway is without coral species. No evidence of the Acropora spp. of coral was found.
PROPOSED WORK: The applicant seeks authorization to construct a 1,560 square foot grated “T”-shaped dock extension with a 3.5 foot wide by 400 foot long access walkway leading to a 8 foot wide by 20 foot long terminal platform, to install permanent hand railing along the entire length of the walkway on both sides, to install a six (6) post 20,000 lbs. capacity cradle boatlift and a four (4) post 10,000 lbs. capacity cradle boatlift at the terminus of the dock, and to install temporary floating turbidity barriers around all work areas that are in/over navigable waters of the United States.
COMPENSATORY MITIGATION – The applicant/agent has provided the following explanation why compensatory mitigation should not be required: If it is determined that the issuance of a DA permit is appropriate, mitigation will be required. The applicant has indicated that the mitigation proposal will be based on the Keys Restoration Fund (KRF). Time lag and risk will be a required component of any mitigation requirement.
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 the West Indian manatee (Trichechus manatus) or its designated critical habitat. Therefore, the use of the Key resulted in the sequence A-B-C-G-H-I-N-O-P1 may affect, not likely to adversely affect. This determination partially was based on the implementation of the Standard Manatee Conditions for In-Water Work. The Corps has concurrence with this determination pursuant to the Effect Determination Key for the manatee dated April 2013.
In addition, the Corps has determined the proposed project is located within a designed sea turtle nesting beach and may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect (“MANLAA”) the green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas), loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta), hawksbill sea turtles (Eretmochelys imbricata), Kemp’s ridley sea turtles (Lepidochelys kempii), and leatherback sea turtles (Dermochelys coriacea). The Corps will request Fish and Wildlife Service's concurrence with this determination pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act.
The real estate parcel number is 00098860-000000 and is not on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Suitable Habitat List, dated August 2010, for Monroe County.
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), hawksbill sea turtles (Eretmochelys imbricata), Kemp’s ridley sea turtles (Lepidochelys kempii), leatherback sea turtles (Dermochelys coriacea), smalltooth sawfish (Pristis pectinata), and Nassau grouper species. A no effect determination was reached on Acorpora sp. and corals species; (Dendrogyra cylindrus, Orbicella annularis, Orbicella faveolata, Orbicella franksi, Mycetophyllia ferox). The Corps will request National Marine Fisheries Service concurrence with this 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 2,138 square feet of submerged bottom utilized by various life stages of marine life. The Corps has not independently verified if wetlands and/or submerged aquatic resources area located within the project footprint. 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 and confirmation of resources located within the project footprint has not been verified by Corps personnel. Site inspections will be conducted by the Corps and/or benthic surveys will be required to document existing site conditions within the project footprint prior to reaching a final decision on the project.
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 SW 107th Avenue, Suite 203, Miami, Florida 33176 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, Maria Bezanilla, in writing at the Miami Permits Section, 9900 SW 107th Avenue, Suite 203, Miami, Florida 33176, by electronic mail at Maria.I.Bezanilla@usace.army.mil, or by telephone at (305) 779-6057.
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.