U.S. Army Corps In Reply to Application Number
of Engineers NAB-2021-61405-M47 (Ellis Juan/Revetment, Groin, Living Shoreline)
PN-22-24 Comment Period: August 16, 2022 to September 15, 2022 Plans 1 Plans 2 Plans 3
THE PURPOSE OF THIS PUBLIC NOTICE IS TO INFORM INTERESTED PARTIES OF THE PROPOSED ACTIVITY AND TO SOLICIT COMMENTS. NO DECISION HAS BEEN MADE AS TO WHETHER OR NOT A PERMIT WILL BE ISSUED AT THIS TIME.
This District has received an application for a Department of the Army permit pursuant to Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act (33 USC 403) and Section 404 of the Clean Water Act (33 USC 1344),Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act (33 USC 403) and Section 404 of the Clean Water Act (33 USC 1344), as described below:
24499 New Post Road
St. Michaels, Maryland 21663
WATERWAY AND LOCATION OF THE PROPOSED WORK:
The work is located in Hambleton Cove, in St. Michaels, Talbot County, Maryland (Latitude: 38.818390°; Longitude -76.228200°W).
OVERALL PROJECT PURPOSE:
To provide shoreline erosion control. See HQ SOP, July 2009, Section 12 and 33 CFR 325 App B 9(b)(4) The Corps makes the determination of overall project purpose using the information provided by the applicant. The overall project purpose is more specific than the basic project purpose and will help establish the geographic scope of the alternatives review. The overall project purpose should be specific enough to define the applicant’s needs, but not so restrictive as to preclude all discussion of alternatives.
The applicant proposes to stabilize approximately 415 linear feet (lf) of eroding shoreline utilizing a living shoreline design, revetment, and stone groin protection within an approximately 9,235 square foot (sf) (0.21-acre) impact area as follows: to emplace 240 lf of low profile stone sill by emplacing approximately 152 cubic yards (cu.yds) of stone fill with two 10 foot (ft) wide tidal flushing vents, and to create tidal marsh habitat by depositing approximately 267 cu.yds of sloped, clean select sand fill stabilized with 2,400 sf of low marsh (Spartina alterniflora) and 2,400 sf of high marsh (Spartina patens) plantings; to emplace 175 lf of stone revetment by emplacing approximately 199 cu.yds of stone fill; and to construct a 6- to 12-foot wide by 50-foot long stone groin perpendicular to the shoreline; all to extend no more than 50 feet channelward of the approximate mean high water (MHW) shoreline. The stone groin component of the proposed project was approved by the State Tidal Wetlands License 11-WL-0225. All work is proposed in accordance with the attached plans as prepared by Land Engineering, LLC dated June 2021 and revised March 2022. Please refer to the table below for a summary of aquatic resource impacts.
EFFECTS ON AQUATIC RESOURCES:
Aquatic Resource Impact (sf)
Aquatic Resource Type
Sand Fill & Marsh Plantings
LEAD FEDERAL AGENCY:
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, as the lead federal agency, is responsible for all coordination pursuant to applicable federal authorities.
APPLICANT’S PROPOSED AVOIDANCE, MINIMIZATION, AND COMPENSATORY MITIGATION:
As part of the planning process for the proposed project, steps were taken to ensure avoidance and minimization of impacts to aquatic resources to the maximum extent practicable based on the existing site conditions. The applicant living shoreline, revetment, and stone groin fill is designed to be the minimum size practicable to achieve the project purpose, given constraints such as geomorphic setting of the site, wind and wave climate, and the adjacent embankment. In addition, the conceptual plans were modified to minimize impacts to archeological resources from ground disturbance and tree removal.
No compensatory mitigation is proposed. No wetlands would be impacted as a result of the proposed project. No submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) is proposed to be impacted based on the Corps review of SAV mapping data available from the Virginia Institute of Marine Sciences for the most recent 5 years of mapped coverage data.
CORPS EVALUATION REQUIREMENTS:
This project will be evaluated pursuant to Corps Regulatory Program Regulations
(33 CFR Parts 320-332). The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impacts, 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 reasonable 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, economic, 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, mineral needs, and consideration of property ownership and in general, the needs and welfare of the people. The evaluation of the impact of this project will also include application of the Clean Water Act Section 404(b)(1) Guidelines promulgated by the Administrator, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
A preliminary review of this application indicates that the proposed work will have no effectwill have no effect on federally listed threatened or endangered species or their critical habitat, pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act, as amended. The project site has been mapped as migrating and foraging habitat for juvenile, subadult and adult Atlantic sturgeon (Acipenser oxyriynchus oxyriynchus); overwintering habitat and migrating and foraging habitat for adult shortnose sturgeon (Acipenser brevirostrum); and migrating and foraging habitat for adult and juvenile Green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas), Kemp’s ridley sea turtle (Lepidochelys kempii), Leatherback sea turtle (Dermochelys coriacea), and Loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caretta). The project activities are proposed in tidal water less than 3 feet below MHW. The project location and vicinity are not mapped as critical habitat for any known federally listed threatened or endangered species under U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s jurisdiction. As the evaluation of this application continues, additional information may become available which could modify this preliminary 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 on all actions, or proposed actions, permitted, funded, or undertaken by the agency that may adversely affect Essential Fish Habitat (EFH), including species of concern, life cycle habitat, or Habitat Areas of Particular Concern. The project site lies in or adjacent to EFH as described under MSFCMA designated for little skate, Atlantic herring, red hake, windowpane flounder, winter skate, clear nose skate, bluefish, Atlantic butterfish, scup, summer flounder, and black sea bass; all managed species under the MSFCMA. The Baltimore District has made a preliminary determination that the project will have no effect on EFH. The Baltimore District has made a preliminary determination that mitigative measures are notare not required to minimize adverse effects on EFH at this time. This determination may be modified if additional information indicates otherwise.
Pursuant to Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966 and applicable guidance, the Corps has reviewed the latest published version of the National Register of Historic Places and initially determined that nono registered properties listed as eligible for inclusion, therein, are located at the site of the proposed work. The Corps has made the preliminary determination that the proposed project would have no effectwould have no effect on historic properties. The Corps final eligibility and effect determination will be based on coordination with the State Historic Preservation Office as appropriate and required, and with full consideration given to the proposed undertaking’s potential direct and indirect effects on historic properties within the Corps’ identified permit area.
Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act also requires federal agencies to consult with federally recognized American Indian tribes that attach religious and cultural significance to historic properties that may be affected by the agency’s undertaking. Corps Tribal Consultation Policy mandates an open, timely, meaningful, collaborative, and effective deliberative communication process that emphasizes trust, respect, and shared responsibility. The policy further emphasizes that, to the extent practicable and permitted by law, consultation works toward mutual consensus and begins at the earliest planning stages before decisions are made and actions taken. The Corps final eligibility and effect determination will be based on coordination with interested tribes, in accordance with the Corps current tribal standard operating procedures as appropriate and required, and with full consideration given to the proposed undertaking’s potential direct and indirect effects on tribal resources.
MODIFICATION OF CIVIL WORKS PROJECTS: 33 USC 408 (SECTION 408):
All Section 408 proposals will be coordinated internally at USACE. The Section 408 decision will be issued along with the Section 404 and/or Section 10 decision. Please see the following link for more information regarding Section 408: https://www.nab.usace.army.mil/Missions/Regulatory/Section-408-Requests/.
WATER QUALITY CERTIFICATION:
The applicant is required to obtain a water quality certification in accordance with Section 401 of the Clean Water Act.
COASTAL ZONE MANAGEMENT PROGRAMS:
Where applicable, the applicant has certified in this application that the proposed activity complies with and will be conducted in a manner consistent with the approved Coastal Zone Management Program. By this public notice, we are requesting the state concurrence or objection to the applicant’s consistency statement.
The applicant must obtain any state or local government permits which may be required.
SUBMISSION OF COMMENTS:
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 provided will become part of the public record for this action and are subject to release to the public through the Freedom of Information 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 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District within the comment period specified above through postal mail at the address below or electronic submission to the project manager email address below. Written comments should reference the Application Number NAB-2021-61405.
PUBLIC HEARING REQUESTS:
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 within the comment period as specified above to receive consideration. Also, it must clearly set forth the interest which may be adversely affected by this activity and the manner in which the interest may be adversely affected. The public hearing request may be submitted by electronic mail or mailed to the following address:
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District
2 Hopkins Plaza
Baltimore, Maryland 21201
It is requested that you communicate this information concerning the proposed work to any persons known by you to be interested, who did not receive a copy of this notice.
General information regarding the Corps’ permitting process can be found on our website at https://www.nab.usace.army.mil/Missions/Regulatory.aspx . This public notice has been prepared in accordance with Corps implementing regulations at 33 CFR 325.3. If you have any questions concerning this specific project or would like to request a paper copy of this public notice, please contact Meg Fullam of this office, at (443) 310 4567 or via email at email@example.com . This public notice is issued by the Chief, Regulatory Branch.