November 18, 2022
VARTF PO-10 Walnut Hill
FEDERAL PUBLIC NOTICE
The District Engineer received a proposal to establish a stream compensatory mitigation project for Federal and State review as described below:
The Nature Conservancy (TNC)
Attn: Ms. Karen Johnson
Virginia Aquatic Resources Trust Fund (VARTF)
530 East Main Street, Suite 800
Richmond, Virginia 23219
WATERWAY AND LOCATION OF THE PROPOSED WORK: The proposed compensatory mitigation site (Site) is located on approximately 202 acres in Westmoreland County, Virginia. The Site is located within the Potomac River watershed.
LATITUDE AND LONGITUDE: 38.145590 N, -76.976933 W
PROPOSED WORK AND PURPOSE: The Sponsor proposes to design, construct, establish and operate a stream compensatory mitigation project (Project) known as PO-10 Walnut Hill. The purpose of Project is to provide off-site compensatory mitigation for projects that result in unavoidable impacts to stream channels within the Potomac River Drainage Basin.
The Sponsor proposes to generate approximately 11,917 Unified Stream Methodology (USM) credits through the restoration of 4,893 linear feet of stream channel, the preservation of 15,582 linear feet of stream channel, the restoration of 13.20 acres of riparian buffer and the preservation of 187 acres of riparian buffer. The stream restoration activities will include the removal of an existing impoundment and the use of Natural Channel Design techniques to reestablish the connection of the stream to the floodplain areas, increase sediment competency, decrease near bank stress, control grade, maintain a stable width to depth ratio and facilitate stream bank stability. The riparian buffer restoration activities will include riparian plantings and the removal and management of invasive plant species.
The Sponsor proposed, for purposes of Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act and Section 404 of the Clean Water Act, that the primary geographic service area of this Site would include the National Watershed Boundary Dataset Hydrologic Unit Codes (HUC) 02070010 and 02070011. The secondary geographic service area for the Site would include the piedmont portion of HUC 02070008.
Oversight of Project 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 (USACE) and the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) chair the IRT.
The actual approval of the use of the VARTF for a specific project is the decision of USACE pursuant to Section 404 of the Clean Water Act and/or by DEQ pursuant to Section 401 of the Clean Water Act and Title 62.1 of the Code of Virginia. USACE and DEQ provide no guarantee that any individual or general permit will be granted authorization to use the VARTF to compensate for unavoidable stream impacts associated with a proposed permit. Authorization by the Virginia Marine Resources Commission may also be required.
AUTHORITY: Issuance of a public notice regarding proposed compensatory 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: USACE is soliciting comments from the public; Federal, state, and local agencies and officials; Indian Tribes; and other interested parties to consider and evaluate this proposed mitigation site. This is not an application for work in waters of the United States. USACE is evaluating this proposal and 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 classification, 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 Norfolk District ESA Project Review Process, there likely will be no affect to species listed under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 and the Official Species List and Species Conclusion Table is located at https://ribits.ops.usace.army.mil/ords/f?p=107:622:::::: and (3) no known properties eligible for inclusion or included in the National Register of Historic Places are in or near the permit area/area of potential effect. Additional information might change any of these findings.
COMMENT PERIOD: Comments on this project should be made in writing, via email to email@example.com or addressed to the Norfolk District, Corps of Engineers-Lynchburg Field Office, Attn: Jeanne Richardson, 803 Front Street, Norfolk, Virginia 23510-1096, and should be received by the close of business on December 18, 2022. The Project Proposal and Drawings can be viewed at https://ribits.ops.usace.army.mil/ords/f?p=107:622::::::
If you have any questions about this Site, please contact:
803 Front Street
Norfolk, Virginia 23510-1096