U.S. Army Corps In Reply to Application Number
of Engineers CENAB-OPR-M (MD SHA/Project No SM774A21/MD 5 Point
Baltimore District Lookout Road) 2017-62002-M24
PN 18-22 Comment Period: April 26, 2018 – May 17, 2018
THE PURPOSE OF THIS PUBLIC NOTICE IS TO SOLICIT COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC ABOUT THE WORK DESCRIBED BELOW. AT THIS TIME, NO DECISION HAS BEEN MADE AS TO WHETHER OR NOT A PERMIT WILL BE ISSUED.
The Baltimore District 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: Mr. Todd Nichols
Maryland State Highway Administration
707 N. Calvert Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21202
WATERWAY AND LOCATION: Tidal and nontidal wetlands adjacent to Point Lookout Road (MD 5) from Camp Brown Road to causeway, draining into the Patuxent River/Chesapeake Bay, near Scotland, St. Mary’s County, Maryland.
PROPOSED WORK: The Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA) proposes, in accordance with the attached plans, to construct roadway improvements along MD 5 Point Lookout Road from Camp Brown Road to the causeway. Improvements include road widening from the Park Entrance to south of Camp Brown Road to provide wider lanes and shoulders. Typical sections for the widening are 11-foot lane width with 8-foot shoulders (6-ft paved, 2-ft graded). An 8-ft wide Shared Use Path will be created separate from the roadway from the Park Entrance to the Ranger Station. All existing culvert pipes within the project limits will be replaced and brought up to current design standards. Additional proposed work includes installing drainage improvements and stormwater management facilities, roadway resurfacing, wetland creation and enhancement, and use of temporary erosion and sediment controls. The proposed project will permanently impact 2.02 acres of palustrine emergent, forested and scrub-shrub wetlands, and 0.81 acres of tidal wetlands. The proposed project will temporarily impact 0.29 acres of palustrine emergent wetlands.
The applicant has proposed relocating the existing roadside drainage features containing palustrine emergent wetlands as in-kind mitigation for project impacts. SHA proposes to mitigate for permanent impacts to tidal and nontidal wetlands through nontidal wetland creation and enhancement at the Tennyson Site located north of the intersection of Long Neck Road and Tennyson Lane in Scotland, Maryland.
All work is to be completed in accordance with the enclosed plan(s). If you have any questions concerning this matter, please contact Mrs. Mary Frazier at 410-962-5679 or Mary.A.Frazier@usace.army.mil.
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 benefit 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 the cumulative effects thereof; among those are conservation, economics, aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, cultural values, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, flood plain values, land use, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food and fiber production, and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people.
The evaluation of the impact of the work described above on the public interest will include application of the Clean Water Act Section 404 (b) (1) Guidelines promulgated by the Administrator, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, under the authority of the Section 404 of the Clean Water Act.
The Corps of Engineers 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 of Engineers to determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for this proposal. To make this decision, comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects, and the other public interest factors listed above. Comments are used in the preparation of an Environmental Assessment and/or an Environmental Impact Statement pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act. Comments are also used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity.
Written comments concerning the work described above related to the factors listed above or other pertinent factors must be received by the District Engineer, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District, ATTN: Mrs. Mary Frazier, CENAB-OP-RMN, 2 Hopkins Plaza, Baltimore, Maryland 21201, within the comment period specified above.
WATER QUALITY CERTIFICATION: The applicant is required to obtain a water quality certification in accordance with Section 401 of the Clean Water Act from the Maryland Department of the Environment. Any written comments concerning the work described above which relate to water quality certification must be received by the Maryland Department of the Environment, Tidal Wetlands Division, Montgomery Park Business Center,1800 Washington Blvd., Suite 430, Baltimore, Maryland 21230 within the comment period as specified above to receive consideration. MDE has a statutory limit of one year from the date of this public notice to make its decision.
COASTAL ZONE MANAGEMENT PROGRAM: The applicant has certified in this application that the proposed activity complies with and will be conducted in a manner consistent with the Maryland Coastal Zone Management (CZM) Program. By this public notice, we are requesting the State concurrence or objection to the applicant’s consistency statement. Public comments relating to consistency must be received by the Maryland Department of the Environment, Tidal Wetlands Division, Montgomery Park Business Center, 1800 Washington Blvd. Suite 430, Baltimore, Maryland 21230-1708, within the comment period specified above to receive consideration. MDE has a statutory limit of 6 months from the date of this public notice to concur or object to the applicant’s consistency determination.
ESSENTIAL FISH HABITAT: The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSFCMA), as amended by the Sustainable Fisheries Act of 1996 (Public Law 04-267), requires all Federal agencies to consult with the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) on all actions, or proposed actions, permitted, funded, or undertaken by the agency that may adversely affect Essential Fish Habitat (EFH).
The project site lies in or adjacent to EFH as described under MSFCMA for Bluefin tuna (Thunnus thynnus) juvenile; smooth dogfish (Mustelus canis) all life stages; clearnose skate (Raja eglanteria) all life stages; little skate (Leucoraja ericacea) all life stages; windowpane flounder (Scopthalmus aquosos) all life stages; winter skate (Leucoraja ocellata) all life stages; red hake (Urophycis chuss) all life stages; monkfish (Lophius americanus) all life stages; black sea bass (Centropristis striata) all life stages; longfin inshore squid (Loligo pealeii) all life stages; blue fish (Pomatomus saltatrix) all life stages spiny dogfish (Squalus acanthias) all life stages; scup (Stenotomus chrysops) all life stages; Atlantic butterfish (Peprilus triacanthus) all life stages; Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) all life stages; and summer flounder (Paralicthys dentatus) all life stages; all managed species under the MSFCMA.
The project has the potential to adversely affect EFH or the species of concern by loss of spawning, nursery, forage and/or shelter habitat as described under the MSFCMA for the species and life stages identified above. The Baltimore District has made a preliminary determination that site-specific impacts would not be substantial and an abbreviated consultation will be conducted with NMFS. This determination may be modified if additional information indicates otherwise and would change the preliminary determination.
Review of the latest published version of the National Register of Historic Places indicates that no registered properties listed as eligible for inclusion therein are located at the site of the proposed work. Currently unknown archeological, scientific, prehistoric, or historical data may be lost or destroyed by the work to be accomplished under the requested permit.
The applicant must obtain any State or local government permits which may be required.
Any person who has an interest which may be adversely affected by the issuance of this permit may request a public hearing. The request, which must be in writing, must be received by the District Engineer, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District, ATTN: Mrs. Mary Frazier, CENAB-OP-RMN, 2 Hopkins Plaza, Baltimore, Maryland 21201, within the comment period as specified as above to receive consideration. Also, it must clearly state forth the interest which may be adversely affected by this activity and the manner in which the interest may be adversely affected.
It is requested that you communicate the foregoing information concerning the proposed work to any persons known by you to be interested and not being known to this office, who did not receive a copy of this notice.
FOR THE DISTRICT ENGINEER:
JOSEPH P. DAVIA
Chief, Maryland Section Northern