US Army Corps of Engineers
Norfolk District

NAO-2006-6860

Published Aug. 1, 2019
Expiration date: 8/31/2019

August 01, 2019
CENAO-WR-R
NAO-2006-6860

FEDERAL PUBLIC NOTICE
The District Commander has received a joint application for Federal and State permits as described below:

APPLICANT
Chincoteague Hotel, L.C.

WATERWAY AND LOCATION OF THE PROPOSED WORK:  The project is located in Chincoteague Channel, Main Street, Chincoteague, Accomack County, Virginia (37.9372 -75.3729).

PROPOSED WORK AND PURPOSE:  The applicant proposes to impact 7,520 square feet of wetlands/subaqueous bottom and to dredge 7,200 square feet (210 cubic yards) of an existing boat basin to construct a resort area to include the following amenities: rental cottages, pool, bathhouse. A beach area would include a spartina marsh, bulkhead and oyster reef. The dredged boat basin would include a kayak launch. Additional bulkheads would be located throughout the site to support the construction of cottages and infrastructure. A viewing platform along with other supporting amenities are part of this proposal to support the guest and the resort area.  A sunken hull located channelward of the property would also be removed during construction.  

Applicant proposes to mitigate on-site for the wetland and other Waters of the United States impacted by this proposed project.

In addition to the required Department of the Army permit, the applicant must obtain a Virginia Water Protection Permit/401 certification from the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality assuring that applicable laws and regulations pertaining to water quality are not violated and a permit from the Accomack County Wetlands Board.  Project drawings are attached.

AUTHORITY:  Permits are required pursuant to Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 (33 U.S.C. 403), 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: there may be an effect to listed/proposed/candidate species and/or designated/proposed critical habitat under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 and the Official Species List and Species Conclusion Table is attached for review and comment by Fish and Wildlife Service; and there are 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. This project will be coordinated with the Virginia Department of Historical Resources.  Additional information might change any of these findings. 

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). 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: bettina.sullivan@deq.virginia.gov or john.fisher@deq.virginia.gov.

The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, as amended by the Sustainable Fisheries Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-267), 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).   Chincoteague Channel contains Essential Fish Habitat (EFH) for the juvenile and adult in different life stages of 17 species including winter flounder (Pleuronectes americanus), Atlantic Sharpnose Shark (Rhizoprionodon terraenovae), Sand Tiger Shark, windowpane flounder (Scopthalmus aquosus), scup (Stenotomus chrysops) Black sea bass (Centropristis striata), red hake (Urophycis chuss), Atlantic herring (Clupea harengus), Bluefish (Pomatomus saltatrix) Scalloped Hammerhead Shark, red drum (Sciaenops ocellatus), dusky shark (Charcharinus obscurus), Sandbar Shark, Cobia (Rachycentron canadum), Summer flounder (Paralichthys dentatus), King mackerel (Scomberomorus cavalla), Atlantic Spanish mackerel (Scomberomorus maculatus).  The habitat which this project would affect consists of wetlands, intertidal areas and shallow as well as deep water habitats.  The proposed project is described in Proposed Work and Purpose, above.  Based on comments from the National Marine Fisheries Service in response to this public notice, further EFH consultation may be necessary.

COMMENT PERIOD:  Comments on this project should be in writing and can be sent by either email to danny.r.bacon@usace.army.mil, 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 31, 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 Dan Bacon at 757-201-7060 or by email danny.r.bacon@usace.army.mil.

Peter Kube
Chief Eastern Virginia 
Regulatory Section

Attachment: Drawings, SCT, iPAC