July 17, 2019
FEDERAL PUBLIC NOTICE
The District Commander has received a joint application for Federal and State permits as described below:
JEB Little Creek-Fort Story
Captain Joey L. Frantzen
2600 Tarawa Court, Suite 100
Virginia Beach, VA 23459-3297
WATERWAY AND LOCATION OF THE PROPOSED WORK: The project is located within the Small Arms Testing and Evaluation Compound (SATEC) at Joint Expeditionary Base (JEB) Little Creek – Fort Story, which is located along the Chesapeake Bay and Atlantic Ocean in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
PROPOSED WORK AND PURPOSE: The applicant proposes to impact 1.64 acres of emergent wetlands and 0.135 acres of forested wetlands (total of 1.78 acres of nontidal wetlands) for the construction of a new Control Building and construction of a roadway course for related training scenarios within the Small Arms Testing and Evaluation Compound (SATEC) facility at Joint Expeditionary Base (JEB) Little Creek – Fort Story, in Virginia Beach, Virginia. The purpose of the project is the expansion of the training capabilities within the SATEC, which is fundamental to supporting mission-readiness of Department of Defense (DOD) Special Operations Forces (SOF). The proposed project has been designed to utilize upland areas within the SATEC, to the maximum extent practicable, while still meeting the purpose and need for the SATEC facility.
Impacts to nontidal forested and emergent wetlands are avoided and minimized by taking advantage of existing/previously disturbed portions of the SATEC site. Most specifically, the training course/roadway utilizes the existing trail section within the SATEC and avoids wetlands wherever practical. A permit was issued by the Corps on February 3, 2014 (NAO-2005-05265 / 13-V1650) and the Department of Environmental Quality on March 28, 2014 (VWP Individual Permit 13-1650) for the previously designed training course/roadway within the same site. However, mitigation credits were not purchased for this permitted project as the project did not reach construction. The applicant proposes to compensate for the impacts at a 2:1 ratio for forested impacts and 1:1 ratio for emergent impacts from the Virginia Aquatic Resources Trust Fund (VARTF), an in-lieu fee mitigation program in Virginia. Therefore, the applicant will need 1.91 credits to compensate for the proposed wetland impacts.
In addition to the required Department of the Army permit, the applicant must obtain a Virginia Water Protection Permit from the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) assuring that applicable laws and regulations pertaining to water quality are not violated and a permit from the Virginia Beach Wetlands Board. Project drawings are attached.
AUTHORITY: Permits are required pursuant to Sections 401 and 404 of the Clean Water Act (Public Law 95-217) and Title 62.1 of the Code of Virginia.
FEDERAL EVALUATION OF APPLICATION: 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. The decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources. The benefits which reasonably may be expected from the proposal must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments. All of the proposal's relevant factors will be considered, including 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, mineral needs, consideration of property ownership and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people. The Environmental Protection Agency's "Guidelines for Specification of Disposal Sites for Dredged or Fill Material" will also be applied (Section 404(b)(1) 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 direct, indirect, and cumulative 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. Anyone may request a public hearing to consider this permit application by writing to the District Commander within 30 days of the date of this notice, stating specific reasons for holding the public hearing. The District Commander will then decide if a hearing should be held.
Preliminary review indicates that: (l) no environmental impact statement will be required; (2) The Navy has completed coordination under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531-1544, 87 Stat. 884), as amended) and has provided the attached the Official Species List and the Verification letter for compliance with the January 5, 2016, Programmatic Biological Opinion on Final 4(d) Rule for the Northern Long- eared Bat and Activities Excepted from Take Prohibitions; and (3) no known properties eligible for inclusion or included in the National Register of Historic Places are in or near the permit area, or would likely be affected by the proposal. The Navy has completed their review and determined that the project will have No Effect on historic properties.
For compliance with the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, as amended for projects located in Tidewater, the applicant must certify that federally licensed or permitted activities affecting Virginia's coastal uses or resources will be conducted in a manner consistent with the Virginia Coastal Zone Management Program (VCP) and obtain concurrence from the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), Office of Environmental Impact Review (OEIR). The applicant’s consistency certification is attached to this Public Notice and we are requesting review by DEQ-OEIR for concurrence or objection (the six-month consistency review clock begins when OEIR receives complete information to coordinate the review. It is the applicant’s responsibility to submit a consistency certification to the Office of Environmental Impact Review for concurrence or objection and proof of concurrence must be submitted to the Corps prior to final permit issuance. A template federal consistency certification can be found here: http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/EnvironmentalImpactReview/FederalConsistencyReviews.aspx#cert . For more information or to obtain a list of the enforceable policies of the VCP, contact the Department of Environmental Quality, Office of Environmental Impact Review at (804) 698-4330 or e-mail: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
COMMENT PERIOD: Comments on this project should be in writing and can be sent by either email to email@example.com, or by regular mail, addressed to the Norfolk District, Corps of Engineers (ATTN: CENAO-WR-R), 803 Front Street, Norfolk, Virginia 23510-1011, and should be received by the close of business on August 17, 2019.
PRIVACY & CONFIDENTIALITY: Comments and information, including the identity of the submitter, submitted in response to this Public Notice may be disclosed, reproduced, and distributed at the discretion of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Information that is submitted in connection with this Public Notice cannot be maintained as confidential by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Submissions should not include any information that the submitter seeks to preserve as confidential.
If you have any questions about this project or the permit process, contact:
Melissa Nash at 757-201-7489 or firstname.lastname@example.org.