Public Notice Notifications

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Florida - This includes all public notices for projects being reviewed for Standard Permits within the State of Florida.

Antilles - This includes all public notices for projects being reviewed for Standard Permits within the Antilles area (this includes Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands).

Tropical Storms & Other Emergencies - These public notices provide information on procedures for emergency permitting requirements due to specific tropical storm events or other emergency situations.

Special Issues - These are public notices that involve the Regulatory program but which are generally not limited to one particular geographic area. These would include public notices for the establishment or modification of Restricted Areas/Danger Zones, re-issuance of General Permits or Nationwide Permits, changes to guidance and policies, etc.

Administrative Penalty - These public notices provide information associated with Administrative Penalties. An Administrative Penalty can be assessed to address violations associated with issued Department of the Army permits.

SAJ-2002-07999 (SP-JPF)

Published Oct. 21, 2022
Expiration date: 11/11/2022

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:

Victor Ballestas
Westshore Marina Ventures, LLC
150 SE 2nd Avenue, Suite 800
Miami, FL 33131

WATERWAY AND LOCATION: The project would affect waters of the United States associated with Old Tampa Bay. The project site is located at 6001 Westshore Boulevard, Tampa, in Section 8, Township 30 South, Range 18 East, Tampa, Hillsborough County, Florida.

Directions to the site are as follows: From the Tampa Regulatory office, take I-4 West to the Selmon Connector, take the Connector south to the Selmon Connector, take the Connector west to West Gandy Boulevard, take Gandy west to South Westshore Blvd., take Westshore south to site on west side of road.

Latitude 27.882568
Longitude -82.531922

Basic: Expand an existing marina
Overall: Install new finger piers to add slips to an existing marina, and replace three piers with smaller piers

EXISTING CONDITIONS: The project area includes a dredged channel that ends in a dredged basin where the existing marina is located. Seagrass and oyster beds are found in the shallower areas around the basin, and within the shallower part of the basin along the eastern shoreline at the north end of the project. The north end of the project shoreline is vegetated with mangroves, and the rest of the shoreline is seawalled.

Prior Corps permits and modifications for the marina authorized a maximum total of 217 boat slips. As constructed, the existing marina has 156 slips at finger piers, plus approximately eight more slips along the marginal dock where the applicant now proposes new finger piers.

PROPOSED WORK: The applicant seeks authorization to construct nine 40’ by 5’ finger piers at an existing marginal dock, and replace two existing 65’ by 5’ finger piers and one existing 60’ by 5’ finger pier with three 40’ by 5’ finger piers. The proposed work adds approximately 1594 square feet of dock surface area, and ten additional boat slips to the existing 164 slips.

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 proposed work takes place in an area devoid of aquatic resources such as seagrasses, other submerged aquatic vegetation, or mangroves. The applicant will use best management practices during construction to protect water quality, such as turbidity curtains. The applicant has agreed to follow all applicable best management practices for the protection of federally-listed species.

COMPENSATORY MITIGATION – The applicant has offered the following compensatory mitigation plan to offset unavoidable functional loss to the aquatic environment: The applicant has provided the following explanation why compensatory mitigation should not be required: The proposed project should not result in the loss of any aquatic resources such as seagrasses, other submerged aquatic vegetation, or mangroves.

CULTURAL RESOURCES: The Corps has evaluated the undertaking for effects to historic properties as required under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act and has followed the guidelines of 33 CFR Part 325, Appendix C. Due to the extensive modification of and impacts to the permit area by past dredging, the Corps has determined that the project would have No Potential to Cause Effects to Historic Properties.

ENDANGERED SPECIES: The project area is within the consultation areas for the piping plover and the West Indian manatee. The project is located within an Important Manatee Area. The site is within the core foraging area for at least one wood stork nesting colony. Construction and use of the docking facility have the potential to affect the Gulf sturgeon, smalltooth sawfish, and swimming sea turtles.
The project will not impact suitable habitat for the piping plover. The project will not impact suitable foraging habitat for the wood stork. Therefore, the Corps has made a determination of ‘no effect’ for these two species, and no further consultation is necessary.

Using The Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District, and the State of Florida Effect Determination Key for the Manatee in Florida, April 2013 with May 2019 Addendum, the Corps has determined the proposal may affect the West Indian manatee (A-B-C-D-G-H-I-J-L-M). The Corps will request initiation of formal consultation with the Fish and Wildlife Service/National Marine Fisheries Service pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act by separate letter.

The Corps evaluated the proposed work utilizing NMFS’s Jacksonville District’s Programmatic Biological Opinion (JAXBO) dated 20 November 2017. The JAXBO analyzes the effects from 10 categories of minor in-water activities occurring in Florida and the U.S. Caribbean on sea turtles (loggerhead, leatherback, Kemp's ridley, hawksbill, and green); smalltooth sawfish; Nassau grouper; scalloped hammerhead shark, sturgeon (Gulf, shortnose, and Atlantic); corals (elkhorn, staghorn, boulder star, mountainous star, lobed star, rough cactus, and pillar); whales (North Atlantic right whale, sei, blue, fin, and sperm); and designated critical habitat for Johnson's seagrass; smalltooth sawfish; sturgeon (Gulf and Atlantic); sea turtles (green, hawksbill, leatherback, loggerhead); North Atlantic right whale; and elkhorn and staghorn corals in accordance with Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act. Based on past permitting practices of the Corps and review of consultations with similar in-water construction activities, Project Design Criteria (PDCs) were identified in the JAXBO that typically have been applied to permitted in-water construction activities. These PDCs ensure effects of in-water construction activities are minimal in nature and do not result in adverse effects to listed species or to essential features of designated CH. For this application, the Corps conducted a project specific review to ensure that all of the PDCs were met.

Due to the proposed total number of boat slips, the Corps has determined that the project does not meet PDC A2.1.3 dock construction, and that the project may affect but is not likely to adversely affect the Gulf sturgeon, swimming sea turtles, and smalltooth sawfish or designated critical habitat. The Corps will request U.S. Fish and Wildlife/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. [INCLUDE IF APPROPRIATE] The proposal would impact approximately acres of habitat type utilized by various life stages of species. Our initial determination is that the proposed action would or would not have a substantial adverse impact on EFH or Federally managed fisheries in the . 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.

NAVIGATION: Based on the Florida State Plane coordinates provided by the applicant, the waterward edge of the proposed structure is approximately 1.6 miles away from the near bottom edge of the closest Federal channel.

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. The jurisdictional line has not been verified by Corps personnel.

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, John Fellows, 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)769-7070.

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, aesthetics, 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.

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.