Public Notice U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Chesapeake Bay Dredging

 BALTIMORE DISTRICT

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PN15-89 (MDNR/Fisheries Service/Man O’War Shoal Shell Dredging) – 2009-61802

Posted: 12/22/2015

Expiration date: 2/18/2016

Joint Public Notice  U.S. Army Corps of Engineers                

In Reply to Application Number

                CENAB-OP-RMN (MDNR /Fisheries Service/Man O’War

Baltimore District            Shoal Shell Dredging) 2009-61802-M04

 Maryland Tidal Wetlands License # 15-WL-0757

 PN 15-89  COMMENT PERIOD:  December 22, 2015 to February 18, 2016                                               

 

THE PURPOSE OF THIS PUBLIC NOTICE IS TO SOLICIT COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC ABOUT THE WORK DESCRIBED BELOW AND TO ANNOUNCE THE DATES OF TWO CORPS/MARYLAND DEPARTMENT OF THE ENVIRONMENT PUBLIC HEARINGS ON THE SUBJECT APPLICATION.  AT THIS TIME, NO DECISION HAS BEEN MADE AS TO WHETHER OR NOT AUTHORIZATIONS WILL BE ISSUED.  THE CORPS/MDE PUBLIC HEARINGS WILL BE HELD:

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

6:00 pm to 7:00 pm Poster Session

7:00 pm Public Hearing

Sparrows Point High School Auditorium

7400 North Point Road

Edgemere, Maryland 21219

Inclement Weather Date: Tuesday, February 2, 2016

The US Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District (Corps) and the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) public hearings provide members of the public the opportunity to present views, opinions, and information which will be considered by the Corps and MDE in evaluating the permit application.  The purpose of the hearing is for the Corps and MDE to receive oral or written comments that will enable them to evaluate the impacts of the proposed project on the public interest. All interested parties, including representatives of Federal, State, and local governments, and private individuals and organizations, are invited to be present or be represented. Each will be given an opportunity to express their views regarding the proposed project.Prior to each public hearing, a poster session/display will be available from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM where project drawings can be reviewed.  The applicant and Corps/MDE representatives will also be available to answer questions.  At 7:00 PM, the formal public hearing will begin with agency statements, followed by a brief statement by the applicant, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (MDNR), followed by public testimony.  Please note that a time limit of three minutes per speaker may be set, depending on the number of speakers, to ensure that all interested parties have an opportunity to voice their views. The public hearings will be recorded and transcribed.

The Corps has received an application to dredge five million bushels of oyster shell from the Man O’War Shoal in the Chesapeake Bay.

                             

APPLICANT:   Maryland Department of Natural Resources, Fisheries Service

Chesapeake Shellfish Program

Tawes State Office Building, B-2

580 Taylor Avenue

Annapolis, Maryland  21401-2397

LOCATION:  The Man O’War Shoal, site of the proposed oyster shell dredging, is located north of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge in the Chesapeake Bay near the mouth of the Patapsco River, Baltimore County, Maryland.
The full MDNR permit application can be found at: http://dnr2.maryland.gov/fisheries/Pages/oysters/permit-applications.aspx

 

REVIEW PROCESS:  By this public notice, the Corps and MDE are 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 impacts of this proposed activity.  Any comments received will be considered by the Corps and MDE to determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit or license for this proposal.  To make these decisions, comments are used to assess impacts on navigation, endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects, and the other public interest factors listed below.  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 overall public interest of the proposed activity.

All work is to be completed in accordance with the attached plans and work description.

WRITTEN COMMENTS:   Written comments and information provided by interested parties must be received by the Corps and MDE by the closing date of this notice’s comment period, February 18, 2016, to receive consideration. If you have any questions, or would like to submit written comments, please contact or write to:

Ms. Abbie Hopkins

ATTN:  CENAB-OPR-M

Baltimore District, Corps of Engineers

P.O. Box 1715

Baltimore, MD 21203-1715

Phone:  410-962-6080

Email:  abbie.hopkins@usace.army.mil

Questions or comments pertaining to the State’s Tidal Wetlands License should be directed to:

Mr. Justin Bereznak

Tidal Wetlands Division

Wetlands and Waterways Program

Maryland Department of the Environment

1800 Washington Blvd., Ste. 430

Baltimore, MD 21230-1708

Phone:  410-537-3782

Email: justin.bereznak@maryland.gov

The decision whether to authorize this project will be based on an evaluation of probable impacts including cumulative impacts of the proposed activity on the public interest.  That decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources.  The benefit which reasonably may be expected to accrue from the proposal must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments.  All factors which may be relevant to the proposal will be considered including the cumulative effects thereof; among those are 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, and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people.

The evaluation of the impact of the work described above on the public interest will include application of the Clean Water Act Section 404(b)(1) Guidelines promulgated by the Administrator, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, under authority of Section 404 of the Clean Water Act.

Man O’War MD DNR Shoal Shell Dredging

Posted in Environment, General.