February 9, 2023
FEDERAL PUBLIC NOTICE
The District Commander has received a joint permit application for Federal and State permits as described below:
Mr. Mark Williams
Luck Stone Corporation
P.O. Box 29682
Richmond, Virginia 23242
PROJECT LOCATION: The project site is located along the southern side of Hudson Road and Eleven Oaks Road down to Lazaretto Creek in the Town of Crewe and Nottoway County, Virginia.
PROJECT SIZE: 334.9 acres
NEAREST WATERWAY: Lazaretto Creek
LATITUDE AND LONGITUDE: 37.1568°N; -78.1184°W
PROJECT DESCRIPTION AND PURPOSE: The proposed project includes excavation of a granite quarry pit with appurtenant support facilities. The pit area will utilize downward spiraling concentric circles to advance on meta volcanic stone reserves. The proposed project includes a phased pit expansion. The initial pit will be approximately 38 acres with additional space reserved to the west for expansion. Expansion is projected to be necessary in 5-8 years after quarry establishment. The proposed project also includes construction of a scale and scale office, equipment and maintenance shop, overburden storage area, three settling ponds, interior access roads, and a rail spur.
Phase 1 would include permanent impacts to 0.31 acres of palustrine forested (PFO), 0.13 acres of palustrine scrub-shrub (PSS), and 0.23 acres of palustrine emergent (PEM) wetlands. Additionally, 1,991 linear feet of intermittent (R4) and 1,389 linear feet of perennial (R3) stream channel would be impacted. Phase 2 would include permanent impacts to 0.14 acres of PFO and 0.05 acres of PEM wetlands. Additionally, 2,549 linear feet of R3 and 1,567 of R4 stream channel would be impacted. Total impacts would be 0.85 acres of palustrine non-tidal wetlands and 7,496 linear feet of non-tidal stream channel.
The purpose of the Project is to construct a granite quarry that will provide a safe and efficient means to meet current and future demands for stone within the region and provide access to service the Tidewater Region of Virginia.
AVOIDANCE AND MINIMIZATION: Virginia Energy requires a 100’ buffer around the perennial system. The Applicant has projected an additional 100’ of buffer (200’ combined) off Lazaretto Creek in areas proximal to industrial disturbance. These areas are to remain undisturbed in effort to minimize primary and secondary impacts to the main system.
The initial proposed pit and overburden storage area have been situated in areas where jurisdictional features are avoided to the maximum extent practicable. The location of the pit allows for efficient initial yields while positioning for expansion as demand requires. The overburden storage area has been strategically positioned in uplands between two stream systems to minimize impacts.
COMPENSATORY MITIGATION: Compensatory mitigation for these unavoidable impacts will be achieved through the purchase of off-site mitigation credits from Mitigation Banks authorized to service the project area. Compensation requirements were determined using standard mitigation ratios of 2:1 for PFO, 1.5:1 for PSS and 1:1 for PEM wetlands. The Unified Stream Methodology (USM) was used to determine stream mitigation ratios.
Due to the nature and timing of quarry phasing, and in efforts to not deplete the credit reserves in the watershed, the Applicant is proposing a phased mitigation plan. The phased mitigation plan would correspond to the phasing as presented on the impacts map. Compensation would be provided prior to any impacts being taken for that phase. Compensation requirements for Phase 1 would include 1.04 wetland and 3,963 stream credits. Phase 2 would require 0.33 wetland and 4,421 stream credits.
In addition, the applicant must obtain an Individual Section 401 Water Quality Certification or waiver from the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) assuring that applicable laws and regulations pertaining to water quality are not violated.
A copy of the joint permit application can be found on the Virginia Marine Resources Commission’s website (https://webapps.mrc.virginia.gov/public/habitat/additionaldocs.php?id=20230005).
( ) Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 (33 U.S.C. 403).
(X) Sections 401 and 404 of the Clean Water Act (Public Law 95-217) and Title 62.1 of the Code of Virginia.
( ) Section 103 of the Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act of 1972 (33 U.S.C. 1413).
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 (EIS) pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act. Preliminary review of the application indicates that no EIS will be required.
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.
ENDANGERED SPECIES: After conducting the Norfolk District Endangered Species Act (ESA) Project Review Process, the Corps has made the preliminary determination that:
There may be an effect to listed/proposed/candidate species and/or designated/proposed critical habitat under the ESA of 1973. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) Information and Planning and Consultation (IPaC) Official Species List and Species Conclusion Table are attached for review and comment by the FWS and the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS).
Additional information might change any of these findings.
HISTORIC AND CULTURAL RESOURCES: Historic Resources eligible for inclusion or included in the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) are in or near the Corps permit area or would likely be affected by the proposal.
Additional information may change any of these findings.
ESSENTIAL FISH HABITAT: 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 NMFS on all actions, or proposed actions, permitted, funded, or undertaken by the agency, that may adversely affect Essential Fish Habitat (EFH).
There is no EFH in the Corps area of responsibility.
VIRGINIA’S COASTAL ZONE MANAGEMENT PROGRAM: For compliance with the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, as amended for projects located in Virginia’s Coastal Zone, 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’s Coastal Zone Management Program (Virginia CZM Program), 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 OEIR 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 in the Federal Consistency Manual here: https://www.deq.virginia.gov/permits-regulations/environmental-impact-review/federal-consistency. For more information or to obtain a list of the enforceable policies of the Virginia CZM Program, contact the DEQ-OEIR at (804) 659-1915 or e-mail: email@example.com.
No concurrence is required because the project is not located within Virginia’s Coastal Zone.
If you have any questions about this project or the permit process, contact Mr. Randy Steffey at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 757-201-7579.