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) as described below:
APPLICANT: Jack and Mitzi Joyce
150 Lake Harbor Court
Bratenahl, Ohio 44108
WATERWAY AND LOCATION: The project would affect waters of the United States (wetlands) associated with the Guana River. The project site is located at 151 Yellow Bill Lane (St. Johns County Property Appraiser – Parcel Identification Number 1420410100), in Section 7, Township 6 South, Range 30 East, Ponte Vedra Beach, St. Johns County, Florida.
Directions to the site are as follows: From downtown Jacksonville, take Interstate 95 south to FL-202 E (JTB Boulevard). Take FL-202 E to Fl-A1A South toward Ponte Vedra/St. St. Augustine. Merge onto FL-A1A South/3rd Street South/A1A N/A1A Scenic and Historic Coastal Byway. Go approximately 18.9 miles and turn right onto Yellow Bill Lane. Take Yellow Bill Lane to the site on the right.
APPROXIMATE CENTRAL COORDINATES: Latitude 29.992977°
Longitude -81.318224° °
Basic: The basic project purpose is to construct a private residential single-family home.
Overall: The overall project purpose is to construct a private residential single-family home within Serenata North subdivision, adjacent to Guana River in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida.
General: The 0.197-acre project site is located adjacent to the Guana River within the Serenata North subdivision. The subdivision is located within South Ponte Vedra and is surrounded by salt marsh that is adjacent to the Guana River. This portion of the Guana River is part of the Guana River Marsh Aquatic Preserve.
Soils: The Soil Survey of St. Johns County, Florida (U.S. Department of Agriculture, Soil Conservation Service, 2004) identifies the following soil types within the property (reference attached Figure 4).
Pompano fine sand, < 2 percent slopes (#19) is a poorly drained, nearly level soil in low areas bordering poorly, to well-defined drainageways and broad low flat areas. The surface layer is very dark grayish brown fine sand about 4 inches thick. The material between depths of 4 and 28 inches is white fine sand. The seasonal high-water table is at a depth of less than 10 inches for 2 to 6 months of the year, and it recedes to within a depth of 30 inches for more than 9 months during most years. Available water capacity is very low and permeability is rapid. Natural vegetation is slash pine, longleaf pine, scattered sweetgum, wax myrtle, bluestem, panicum, and bracken fern. Potential for community development is medium and the high-water table is a severe limitation for urban uses.
Pellicer silty clay loam, frequently flooded, < 1 percent slopes (#24) is a very poorly drained, nearly level soil that is in low tidal marshes along stream estuaries near the Atlantic Coast. The surface layer is very dark brown silty clay loam about 10 inches thick. Between depths of 10 and 55 inches, the material is dark greenish gray clay loam. This soil is flooded twice daily by normal high tides. The water table fluctuates with the tide. Available water capacity is high and permeability is slow. Natural vegetation consists of seashore saltgrass, brushy sea-oxyeye, glasswort, and needlegrass rush. Potential for community development is very low. The hazard of flooding, excessive wetness, and low strength make the soil poorly suited to the construction of buildings or local roads and streets.
c. Vegetative Communities: This site contains 2 generalized community types or land uses characterized by the Florida Land Use, Cover, and Forms Classification System [(FLUCFCS) Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), State Topographic Bureau, Thematic Mapping Section, 1999] (reference attached Figure 5).
432 Sand Live Oak (0.13 ac.±) The majority of the subject site is dominated by upland coastal vegetation best described as Sand Live Oak community (432), per the FLUCFCS classification system. The canopy contains live oak (Quercus virginiana), and water oak (Quercus nigra). The subcanopy is comprised of immature canopy species in addition to red bay (Persea borbonia), dahoon holly (Ilex cassine), sand live oak (Quercus geminata), and wax myrtle (Morella cerifera). In the groundcover stratum, vegetation consists of saw palmetto (Serenoa repens), oak saplings (Quercus sp.), asparagus fern (Asparagus aethiopicus), marsh pennywort (Hydrocotyle sp.), and burr medic (Medicago polymorpha). The northern boundary of the property within the ROW has been cleared with remaining vegetation including St. Augustine grass (Stenotaphrum secundatum), and winged sumac (Rhus copallinum).
Wetlands 617 Mixed Wetland Hardwoods (0.06 ac.±) This category is reserved for those wetland hardwood communities which are composed of a large variety of hardwood species tolerant of hydric conditions yet exhibit an ill-defined mixture of species. The vegetation observed includes wax myrtle (Morella cerifera), laurel oak (Quercus laurifolia), live oak (Quercus virginiana), and red cedar (Juniperus virginiana) in the canopy. The shrub/groundcover stratum contains immature canopy species, Yaupon holly (Ilex vomitoria), black needle rush (Juncus roemerianus), sawgrass (Cladium sp.), groundseltree (Baccharis halimifolia), cordgrass (Spartina sp.), saw palmetto (Serenoa repens), rough witchgrass (Dichanthelium leucothrix), and other similar wetland species.
PROPOSED WORK: The applicant seeks authorization to discharge clean fill material into 0.05 acres (611 cubic yards) of wetlands within the Federal jurisdiction for the development of a single-family home.
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 currently proposed site plan is consistent with the methodology of avoidance and minimization of wetland impacts.
COMPENSATORY MITIGATION – The applicant has offered the following compensatory mitigation plan to offset unavoidable functional loss to the aquatic environment:
To compensate for the proposed impacts, the applicant proposes to purchase credits from a federally approved Mitigation Bank.
The Corps is evaluating the undertaking for effects to historic properties as required under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act. This public notice serves to inform the public of the proposed undertaking and invites comments including those from local, State, and Federal government Agencies with respect to historic resources. Our final determination relative to historic resource impacts may be subject to additional coordination with the State Historic Preservation Officer, those federally recognized tribes with concerns in Florida and the Permit Area, and other interested parties.
Wood Stork (Mycteria Americana): The project site is approximately 7.73 miles from the St. Augustine Alligator Farm Wood Stork Colony; and, within the Core Foraging Area of this colony, therefore, the Corps evaluated potential effects to this species. In consideration of this information, the Corps utilized 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, to determine potential effects upon this species. Use of this key resulted in the sequence A-B-C-may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) previously indicated that they concur with determinations of may affect, not likely to adversely affect based on the key for Wood Storks; and, that no additional consultation is necessary.
Eastern indigo snake (Drymarchon corais couperi): The proposed work is connected to an upland area; therefore, potential impacts to the eastern indigo snake were evaluated using Eastern Indigo Snake Programmatic Determination Key 2013. Use of this key resulted in the sequence A-B-C-may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect, as the applicant has agreed to implement the Standard Protection Measures for the Eastern Indigo Snake, August 12, 2013. The FWS has indicated that they concur with determinations of may affect, not likely to adversely affect based on the key for eastern indigo snakes; and, that no additional consultation is necessary.
On 22 August 2022, the Corps executed a Resources at Risk (RAR) report. The RAR did not indicate that the site is utilized by, or contains habitat critical to, any other federally listed threatened or endangered species. The Corps also reviewed geospatial data and other available information. The Corps has not received or discovered any information that the project site is utilized by, or contains habitat critical to, any other federally listed, threatened, or endangered species.
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 0.05 acres of mixed wetland hardwoods located adjacent to waters that are utilized by various life stages of clearnose skates, shrimp, snapper grouper, and various shark species. Our initial determination is that the proposed action would not have a substantial adverse impact on EFH or Federally managed fisheries in the Guana 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.
Navigation: The project is not located adjacent to a 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 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 Jacksonville Permits Section, P.O. Box 4970, Jacksonville, Florida 32232 within 30 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, Janice Price, in writing at the Jacksonville Permits Section, P.O. Box 4970, Jacksonville, Florida 32232; by electronic mail at Janice.R.Price@usace.army.mil; by facsimile transmission at (904) 232-1940; or, by telephone at (904) 570-4542.
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.
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.
WATER QUALITY CERTIFICATION: WQC is required from the St. Johns River Water Management District (SJRWMD). The project is being reviewed under SJRWMD application no. 101702-5.
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.