FEDERAL PUBLIC NOTICE
The District Engineer received a prospectus to establish a wetland and stream compensatory mitigation site for federal and state permits as described below:
Commonwealth Mitigation, Inc.
Attn: Dave Jordan
18267 Channel Ridge Court
Leesburg, Virginia 20176
WATERWAY AND LOCATION OF THE PROPOSED WORK: The proposed mitigation site is located on approximately 51 acres of agricultural land. The site is located in an unnamed tributary to the Rappahannock River and in Fauquier County, Virginia.
PROPOSED WORK AND PURPOSE: The sponsor proposes to establish, design, construct, and operate a compensatory wetland and stream mitigation site to be known as the Morgansburg Wetland and Stream Mitigation Bank. The purpose of the mitigation project is to provide off-site compensatory mitigation for projects that result in unavoidable impacts to wetlands and streams and other waters of the United States in the Rappahannock River Drainage Basin.
The Sponsor plans to restore/create approximately 25.4 acres of wetlands, enhance 1.5 acres of wetlands, and enhance 7.3 acres of wetland buffer. The sponsor also plans to restore 875 linear feet of stream channel.
The sponsor proposed, for purposes of Section 404 of the Clean Water Act, that the geographic service area of this mitigation site would include the National Watershed Boundary Dataset Hydrologic Unit Codes 02080103 and 02080104. This proposed service area would include portions of Fauquier, Orange, Madison, Culpeper, Rappahannock, Greene, Stafford, Spotsylvania, King George, Fredericksburg, Essex, Caroline, Westmoreland, Richmond, Lancaster, and Northumberland Counties.
Oversight of this mitigation site would be by an existing group of federal and state agency representatives. This interagency oversight group is known as the Interagency Review Team (IRT). The Norfolk District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality chair the IRT.
This mitigation site may be one of a number of practicable options available to applicants to compensate for unavoidable wetland impacts associated with permits issued under the authority of Section 404 and 401 of the Clean Water Act (Public Law 95-217) in Virginia.
The actual approval of the use of this mitigation site for a specific project is the decision of the Corps pursuant to Section 404 of the Clean Water Act and/or by the Department of Environmental Quality pursuant to Section 401 of the Clean Water Act and Title 62.1 of the Code of Virginia. The Corps and the Department of Environmental Quality provide no guarantee that any particular individual or general permit will be granted authorization to use this mitigation site to compensate for unavoidable wetland impacts associated with a proposed permit. Authorization by the Virginia Marine Resources Commission may also be required for its use for specific projects.
AUTHORITY: Issuance of a public notice regarding proposed mitigation sites is required pursuant to the “Compensatory Mitigation for Losses of Aquatic Resources; Final Rule,” (Rule) as published in the April 10, 2008, Federal Register, Vol. 73, No. 70, Pages 19594-19705 (33 CFR Parts 325 and 332).
FEDERAL EVALUATION OF PROPOSAL: 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 this proposed mitigation site. This is not an application for work in Waters of the United States. The Corps of Engineers in evaluating this proposal will consider any comments received. Comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic properties, water quality, conservation, economics, aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, 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.
Preliminary review indicates that: (1) no environmental impact statement would be required; (2) after conducting the NAO ESA Project Review Process, no listed/proposed/candidate species and/or designated/proposed critical habitat under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531-1544, 87 Stat. 884), as amended) will be affected. Based on this no effect determination, no further coordination with the Fish and Wildlife Service is required and (3) The Mt. Holly Ridge-Marsh Run Rural Historic District (030-5587) is a known property that is potentially eligible for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places and is located within the permit area. Additional Section 106 coordination will be initiated via direct coordination with the Virginia Department of Historic Resources regarding effects to resource 030-5587. Additional information might change any of these findings.
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). The unnamed tributary to the Rappahannock River does not contain Essential Fish Habitat (EFH).
COMMENT PERIOD: Comments on this project should be made in writing, addressed to the Norfolk District, Corps of Engineers- (ATTN: Anna Lawston), PO Box 489, Amissville, Virginia 20106, and should be received by the close of business on June 11, 2021. The Prospectus and Drawings can be viewed at https://ribits.ops.usace.army.mil/ords/f?p=107:10:::NO::P10_BANK_ID:5851.
If you have any questions about this mitigation site, please contact: Anna Lawston at 540-764-4459 or email@example.com