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: United States Navy
Ms. Juliana Strieter
Naval Station Mayport
P.O. Box 2800678
Jacksonville, Florida 32228
WATERWAY AND LOCATION: The project would affect waters of the United States associated with the St. Johns River. The project site is located at Naval Station Mayport, in Section 38, Township 1 South, Range 29 East, Jacksonville, Duval County, Florida.
Directions to the site are as follows: Traveling from downtown Jacksonville take the Arlington Expressway to State Road 113 (SR-113). Turn north onto SR-113 and follow SR-113 to the Merrill Road exit and turn east onto Merrill Road. Follow Merrill Road traveling east as the name changes to Fort Caroline Road, McCormick Road, Mount Pleasant Road, and Wonderwood Drive. Follow Wonderwood Drive to Mayport Road and turn north onto Mayport Road. Follow Mayport Road to the Naval Station Mayport. The propose work would occur within the Mayport Basin at the destroyer slip at the South Quay Wall between Warf Delta and Warf Echo.
APPROXIMATE CENTRAL COORDINATES: Latitude 30.388056°
Basic: The basic project purpose is shoreline stabilization and mooring.
Overall: The overall project purpose is the replacement and realignment of the existing bulkhead to accommodate two 400 foot vessels and/or 3 smaller size vessels within the Naval Station Mayport basin.
EXISTING CONDITIONS: The project site is located at the Naval Station Mayport in the basin along the destroyer slip at the South Quay Wall between Warf Delta and Warf Echo. The basin is lined with an existing bulkhead. There is not submerged or emergent aquatic vegetation located in the project area. The surrounding project area is the Naval Station Mayport.
PROPOSED WORK: The applicant seeks authorization to place fill material in 0.24 acre of waters of the United States in association with the construction of 547 linear feet of bulkhead to be used as a mooring area. The improvements would allow for the mooring of two 400-foot vessels nested or three smaller size vessels. The bulkhead would include fenders on the waterward face of the bulkhead.
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:
The applicant considered alternative designs to meet the berthing requirement for the 400-foot littoral combat ship and the current design best accommodates the 400-foot combat ship.
COMPENSATORY MITIGATION – The applicant has provided the following explanation why compensatory mitigation should not be required:
All work would be conducted within the existing Naval Station Mayport basin. The basin is man-made and the area specific to South Quay Wall is shown to have been uplands. No compensatory mitigation is proposed since this is a man-made basin with limited ecological value.
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 Corps has determined the proposed project may affect but is not likely to adversely affect the West Indian Manatee (Trichechus manatus), North Atlantic Right Whale (Eubalaena glacialis), Loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caretta), Green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas), Leatherback sea turtle (Dermochelys coriacea), Hawksbill sea turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata), Kemp's Ridley sea turtle (Lepidochelys kempii), Smalltooth sawfish (Pristis pectinata), Shortnose sturgeon (Acipenser brevirostrum), Atlantic Sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrinchus). In addition, since the proposed work is located within the Core foraging area for the Wood Stork, the Corps evaluated the potential impacts to the Wood Stork using The Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Jacksonville Ecological Services Field Office and State of Florida Effect Determination Key for the Wood Stork in Central and North Peninsular Florida – September 2008 (Wood Stork Key). Use of the Wood Stork Key resulted in the following sequence: A > B > No effect to the Wood Stork, with no further consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife required. The Corps will consult with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife/National Marine Fisheries Service 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. Our initial determination is that the proposed action would not have a substantial adverse impact on EFH or Federally managed fisheries in the St. Johns River. 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 Jacksonville Permits Section, P.O. Box 4970, Jacksonville, Florida 32232-0019 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, Paula R. Johnson, in writing at the Jacksonville Permits Section, P.O. Box 4970, Jacksonville, Florida 32232-0019; by electronic mail at email@example.com or by telephone at (904)232-2503.
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.