Public Notice Notifications

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SAJ-2019-04543 (SP-SCW)

Published Sept. 29, 2020
Expiration date: 10/28/2020

TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN: The Jacksonville District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) has received a complete prospectus proposing the establishment of a mitigation bank pursuant to the 2008 Compensatory Mitigation for Losses of Aquatic Resources regulations (33 CFR Part 332) as described below:

APPLICANT:  Mr. Carl Salafrio
                       Aquatic Resource Mitigation, LLC
                       218 NW 2nd Avenue
                       Gainesville, Florida 32601

WATERWAY AND LOCATION: The proposed project, identified as the 387.2-acre Lake Iskopoga Mitigation Bank (LIMB), abuts Arbuckle Creek on the north shore of Lake Istokpoga, in Sections, 11, 13, 14 and 23, Township 35 South, Range 30 East, Lorida, Highlands County, Florida.

Directions to the site are as follows: From Okeechobee, Florida travel west on U.S. Highway 98 towards Lorida, Florida, and then turn left on Cypress Road. The project site is located south of U.S. Highway 98 and can be access via Cypress Road.

                                                                          Longitude -81.295449°

PROSPECTUS SUMMARY: Pursuant to 33 CFR 332.8(d)(4), the Corps has posted a full copy of the NSMMB prospectus online so that it is available for review by the public. The prospectus may be downloaded from the Regulatory In-Lieu Fee and Bank Information Tracking System (RIBITS) at web address:

Once on the RIBITS homepage, select "Jacksonville" from the "ALL DISTRICTS" drop down menu located in the lower left corner of the screen. Once the district filter has been selected, click on the “Banks & ILF Sites” link located in the Navigation box (upper left corner). This will generate a list of projects, scroll down the list and click on the “Lake Istokpoga MB” link. On this page, click on the "Cyber Repository" link located on the menu bar above the General Information box, then click on the Prospectus Documents folder to access the prospectus associated with the LIMB project.

If you are unable to access the web address, a copy of the prospectus is available upon request to the project manager listed at the end of this public notice.

PROJECT GOALS AND OBJECTIVES: The applicant seeks authorization to establish, enhance, rehabilitate preserve and protect wetlands and uplands on the 387.2-acre property. The primary ecological goals of the LIMB include the conducting mitigation activities to encourage reestablishment of native and desirable vegetative communities, support biological diversity of flora and fauna, and improve historical hydrological conditions. Proposed activities would result in the enhancement of 284.5 acres of mixed forested wetlands, 23.7 acres of freshwater marsh wetlands, 11.4 acres of wet prairie wetlands, and 31.3 acres of upland buffers, rehabilitation of 23 acres of mixed forested wetlands, establishment of 8 acres of mixed forested wetlands and 2.8 acres of wet prairie wetlands, and preservation by recordation of a conservation easement over the entire 387.2 acre project area.

ECOLOGICAL SUITABILITY OF THE SITE: A review of available information indicates that the proposed LIMB project consisted of forested wetlands and open water areas abutting Arbuckle Creek and Lake Istokpoga. A berm was constructed along the southern boundary of the LIMB property in the 1950s. Currently the proposed LIMB property consists of improved pasture, brushland, upland hardwood forest, mixed wetland hardwoods, cypress wetlands, wet prairie wetlands, and freshwater marsh wetlands. The northern boundary of the proposed LIMB abuts U.S. Highway 98, the eastern boundary abuts improved pasture, the southern boundary abuts Lake Istokpoga, and the western boundary abuts residential development. According to information provided by the applicant, the proposed LIMB with vegetative and earthwork will enhance and preserve wetland functions and values in perpetuity.

ESTABLISHMENT AND OPERATION OF THE BANK: The proposed LIMB would be owned by JGS Land Development, LLC, established and operated by Aquatic Resource Mitigation, LLC as the Sponsor with the assistance of Environmental Consulting & Design, Inc. The LIMB is proposed to be established as a single and complete project. Following LIMB successful implementation and attainment of final success criteria, long-term management activities will be implemented in order to ensure the sustainability of LIMB. In addition, the Sponsor will provide sufficient financial assurances to ensure construction and long-term management of the proposed LIMB.

PROPOSED SERVICE AREA: The LIMB project is located within the Kissimmee River Basin identified as Hydrologic Unit Code (HUC) 03090101, and the Arbuckle Creek watershed (HUC 0309010118). The applicant proposes a Mitigation Service Area (MSA) includes the Upper Fisheating Creek (HUC 0309010301), Lower Fisheating Creek (HUC 0309010302), Harney Pond Canal (HUC 0309010303), Indian Prairie Canal (HUC 0309010304), Lower Taylor Creek-Eagle Bay Frontal (HUC 0309010203), Arbuckle Creek (HUC 0309010118), Chandler Slough-Kissimmee River (HUC 0309010120), Istokpoga Creek-Kissimmee River (HUC 0309010119), Pine Island Slough-Kissimmee River (HUC 0309010115), Josephine Creek (HUC 0309010117), Lake Istokpoga (HUC 0309010116), Blue Jordan Swamp (HUC 0309010113), Buttermilk Slough-Kissimmee River (HUC 0309010114), Lake Marian (HUC 0309010110), Lake Kissimmee-Kissimmee River (HUC 0309010111), Lake Rosalie (HUC 0309010112), and Lake Pierce (HUC 0309010107) watersheds. The LIMB MSA is anticipated to include wetland habitat communities that could reasonably be expected to occur on the LIMB.

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 Audubon’s crested caracara (Polyborus plancus), Everglade snail kite (Rostrhamus sociabilis plumbeus), Florida grasshopper sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum floridanus), Florida scrub-jay (Aphelocoma coerulescens). The Corps requests U.S. Fish and Wildlife 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. Our initial determination is that the proposed action would not have a substantial adverse impact on EFH or Federally managed fisheries in the Atlantic Ocean. 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.

SECTION 408: The applicant will not require permission under Section 14 of the Rivers and Harbors Act (33 USC 408) because the activity, in whole or in part, would not alter, occupy, or use a Corps Civil Works project.

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.

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.

COMMENTS: Comments regarding the proposed mitigation bank should be submitted in writing to the District Engineer at the address below within 30 days from the date of this notice.

The initial evaluation pertaining to whether or not this mitigation bank proposal has the potential for providing compensatory mitigation for activities authorized by issued Department of the Army permits will be based on the information contained in the prospectus, received from this public notice and obtained during an inspection of the project site.

If you have any questions concerning this proposed project, you may contact Mrs. Shannon White by electronic mail at, by fax at 904-232-1904, or by telephone at 904-232-1681 or at the following address:

P. O. BOX 4970