SUBJECT: The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Sacramento District, (Corps) is evaluating nine permit applications to construct the Sierra Vista Specific Plan project, which would result in impacts to approximately 24.81 acres of waters of the United States, including wetlands, in or adjacent to Curry Creek. The Corps is considering different permitting strategies for the associated infrastructure including development of a Regional General Permit. This notice is to inform interested parties of the proposed activity and to solicit comments. The notice for this proposed RGP 04 may also be viewed at the Corps web site at www.spk.usace.army.mil/Media/RegulatoryPublicNotices.aspx.
Pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Sacramento District, has prepared a Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) that analyzes the potential effects of implementing the proposed action and alternatives for development of a large-scale, mixed-use, mixed-density master-planned community on the approximately 1,612-acre Sierra Vista Specific Plan area, located in the City of Roseville, Placer County, California. The FEIS documents the reveals the comments that were supplied on the Draft EIS plus looks at the existing condition of environmental resources in and around areas considered for development, and potential impacts on those resources as a result of implementing the alternatives. The alternatives considered in the Draft EIS were: (a) No Action Alternative (no discharge of dredged and/or fill material into waters of the U.S.); (b) Proposed Action Alternative, the applicant group’s preferred alternative; (c) Reduced Footprint/Increased Density Alternative; (d) Reduced Footprint/Same Density Alternative; (e) Focused Avoidance Alternative; and (f) Southwest Site, an off-site alternative located in Southwest Placer County.
Under its regulatory program, the Corps will complete decisions for Department of the Army Permits for discharges of dredged and/or fill material. The Proposed Action consists of nine developments integrated under one specific plan. The nine properties located within the project consist of: M.I.L.L.C. (Conley); Westpark Associates/M.I.L.L.C. (Federico); M.I.L.L.C. (Computer Deductions); M.I.L.L.C. (Bagley & Associates); M.I.L.L.C. (Wealth Properties); DF Properties Inc.; Cyril G. Barbaccia Trust (CGB); AKT Investments, Inc. (Baseline P & R); and AKT Investments, Inc. (Baybrook).
The Corps is the lead Federal agency responsible for the preparation of this FEIS. This notice is to inform interested parties of the proposed activity, to solicit comments on the proposed project and the FEIS. An electronic version of the FEIS may be viewed at the USACE, Sacramento District Website: http://www.spk.usace.army.mil/Missions/Regulatory/Overview/EnvironmentalImpactStatements.aspx.
In addition, a hardcopy of the FEIS may also be reviewed at the following locations:
(1) City of Roseville Permits Center, 311 Vernon Street, Roseville, California 95678.
(2) City of Roseville Public Library, 225 Taylor Street, Roseville, California 95678.
AUTHORITY: This application is being evaluated under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act (CWA) for the discharge of dredged or fill material in waters of the United States.
APPLICANTS: Nine individual permit applications have been received for these proposed developments. The Sierra Vista Owners Group is represented by Jeff Jones, Sierra Vista Owners Group, 1700 Eureka Road, Roseville, California 95661.
Mourier Investments, LLC
1430 Blue Oaks Boulevard, Suite 190
Roseville, California 95661
Contact: Steve Schnable
Conley, Federico, Computer Deductions, Bagley & Associates, Wealth Properties
Westpark LR, LLC
1700 Eureka Road, Suite 140
Roseville, California 95661
Contact: John Murray
D.F. Properties, Inc.
2013 Opportunity Drive, Suite 140,
Roseville, California 95678
Contact: Jeff Ronten
950 South Bascom Avenue, Suite 1113
San Jose, California 95128
Contact: Jack Pevite
2251 Douglas Boulevard, suite 110
Baseline P&R, Baybrook
LOCATION: The 1612-acre site is located on and near Curry Creek, Section 35, Township 11 North, Range 5 East, Mount Diablo Baseline & Meridian, Latitude 38.762166°, Longitude -121.38376°, Roseville, Placer County, California, and can be seen on the CA-PLEASANT GROVE USGS Topographic Quadrangle. See Figures 1 and 2.
PROJECT DESCRIPTION FOR THE FEIS: The Proposed Action includes the following uses: 820 acres (332 hectares) of residential uses totaling 6,650 single- and multi-family residential units at buildout, 216 acres (87 hectares) of commercial and office uses, 61 acres (25 hectares) of public/quasi-public uses such as schools, 91 acres (37 hectares) of parks, 234 acres (95 hectares) of open space, and 177 acres (72 hectares) of roadways and paseos. Development under the Proposed Action, if authorized, would fill approximately 24.81 acres (10.04 hectares) of wetlands and other jurisdictional waters of the United States as defined by the CWA.
The USACE has determined that the overall project purpose for the Proposed Action is to implement a large-scale, mixed-use, mixed-density master-planned community in western Placer County.
PROJECT DESCRIPTION FOR THE DRAFT REGIONAL GENERAL PERMIT 04: The purpose of the RGP would be to provide a simple and expeditious means of transferring the Section 404 authorization for the construction of backbone infrastructure. The Corps of Engineers may issue ten individual permits comprising the Sierra Vista Specific Plan (SVSP) project. Each of these individual permits includes the backbone infrastructure located within the property boundaries of the respective permits (on-site). The only SVSP backbone infrastructure not located on-site is the extension of Westbrook Boulevard and the widening of Baseline Road. Both of these off-site infrastructure segments are included on separate Department of the Army permit applications for projects adjoining SVSP (Westbrook and Placer Vineyards, respectively). Each permittee is required by local development agreements to provide certain segments of the backbone infrastructure if they are not already in place. Depending on the timing and sequence of development, some of the infrastructure needed by a particular permittee may be located on-site on a separate property authorized by a separate individual permit or off-site. In cases where the required infrastructure is located on a separate property covered by a separate individual Department of the Army permit or is located off-site, this RGP would allow the transference of the authority to construct segments of that infrastructure, as needed. Except for the off-site infrastructure, this RGP would not authorize any work not already authorized by the ten individual permits but it allows flexibility to accommodate undetermined project implementation schedules, chronology and phasing. (See Exhibit A.)
ACTIVITIES AUTHORIZED BY THIS RGP: The RGP would authorize specific structures and work associated with construction of the backbone infrastructure associated with the SVSP project. The RGP does not authorize any work other than that backbone infrastructure and does not authorize any changes in the scope or nature of that backbone infrastructure. The structures and work authorized by the RGP are shown on the attached documents Exhibit A and Figure 3.
TERMS OF AUTHORIZATION:
1. Applying for RGP Authorization. Prior to commencing work on a proposed segment of backbone infrastructure requiring authorization by the RGP, applicants seeking such authorization shall notify the Corps in accordance with RGP General Condition Number 12 (Notification). If the Corps determines the activity does not comply with the terms and conditions of the RGP, the Corps will notify the applicant in writing within thirty (30) calendar days that the RGP authorization will not be granted, citing the specific reasons the work does not comply with the terms and condition of this RGP. If the Corps determines the work does comply with the terms and conditions of the RGP, the Corps will notify the applicant of such within 30 days of receipt of a complete application.
If the work would involve potential impacts to federally-listed branchiopods, the Corps will so notify the applicant within 30 days of receipt of the notification and concurrently request the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to append the work to the programmatic biological opinion. In such cases, authorization under this RGP will not be granted until the USFWS has appended the infrastructure segment(s) to the programmatic biological opinion.
If the Corps does not provide a written response to the applicant within 30 days of receipt of a complete notification and the infrastructure segments do not involve potential impacts to federally-listed branchiopods, the applicant may not presume that the proposed activity is authorized under the RGP, and must wait to hear from the Corps that the activity complies with all other terms and conditions of the RGP.
2. Impact Limitations for Waters of the U.S. The impacts to waters of the United States resulting from construction of each segment of backbone infrastructure shall not exceed the impacts authorized for said infrastructure segments in each of the individual permits issued for the SVSP project. Those impacts are listed on the attached Exhibit B and shown in Figure 3.
3. After-the-fact Projects. This RGP may not be used to authorize activities that were constructed without the required authorization of a Department of the Army permit.
4. Activity Completion. Any activity authorized by the Corps under this RGP must be completed prior to the expiration date of this RGP unless specifically extended by the Corps on a case-by-case basis. Activities that have been authorized under this RGP that are under construction or under contract of construction in reliance on this authorization will remain authorized provided the activity is completed within 12 months of the date of the RGP’s expiration, modification or revocation, unless the Corps exercises its discretionary authority to modify, suspend or revoke the authorization of a specific activity.
5. Expiration of RGP. This RGP is valid for five (5) years from the date of issuance (or reissuance). At least sixty (60) calendar days prior to the expiration date of this RGP, the Corps will issue a public notice with an opportunity for public comment, describing the reasons for reissuing the RGP, reissuing the RGP with modifications, or not reissuing the RGP for another five years. The Corps may extend the RGP for six months beyond the expiration date if it is unable to reissue the RGP due to unresolved issues. If the Corps has not reissued or extended the RGP by the expiration date, the RGP will no longer be valid. This RGP, or any specific authorizations granted under this RGP, may also be modified, suspended or revoked by the Corps at any time deemed necessary. In such instance, the Corps will issue a public notice concerning the action.
GENERAL CONDITIONS FOR RGP:
The following conditions apply to all work authorized by this RGP.
1. Site Status. The permittee is responsible for this authorized activity until it is transferred to the City of Roseville. Therefore, you must maintain the activity authorized by this permit in good condition and in conformance with the terms and conditions of this permit. You are not relieved of this requirement if you abandon the permitted activity. Should you wish to cease to maintain the authorized activity or should you desire to abandon it, you must first obtain a modification of this permit from this office, which may require restoration of the area and additional compensation as seen fit by this office to ensure that the site may be adequately maintained in perpetuity.
2. Clean Fill. Fill material must be clean and free of contaminants and noxious plants. Fresh cement or concrete is not allowed in waters unless it is placed in sealed forms. Unsuitable fill material includes vehicle bodies, farm machinery, appliances and other metal objects, asphalt, biodegradable construction debris and tires, concrete with exposed rebar.
3. Endangered Species Consultation. This Corps permit does not authorize you to take an endangered species or designated critical habitat. In order to legally take a listed species, you must have separate authorization under the Endangered Species Act (e.g., an Endangered Species Act Section 10 permit, or a Biological Opinion under Endangered Species Act Section 7, with "incidental take" provisions with which you must comply). The enclosed Fish and Wildlife Service Biological Opinion (Identification Number [XXXX], dated [XXXX]), contains mandatory terms and conditions to implement the reasonable and prudent measures that are associated with "incidental take" that is also specified in the Biological Opinion[s]. Your authorization under this Corps permit is conditional upon your compliance with all of the mandatory terms and conditions associated with "incidental take" of the attached Biological Opinion[s], which terms and conditions are incorporated by reference in this permit. Failure to comply with the terms and conditions associated with incidental take of the Biological Opinion[s], where a take of the listed species occurs, would constitute an unauthorized take, and it would also constitute non-compliance with your Corps permit. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the appropriate authority to determine compliance with the terms and conditions of its/their Biological Opinion[s], and with the Endangered Species Act. You must comply with all conditions of this/these Biological Opinion[s], including those ascribed to the Corps.
4. Water Quality Certification. Section 401 water quality certification is required for all activities to be authorized by this RGP. The Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board (CVRWQCB) has issued a programmatic water quality certification for the activities authorized by this RGP. Each permittee must submit a notice of intent (NOI) to the CVRWQCB and receive its approval to construct the infrastructure under the programmatic water quality certification prior to beginning work in waters of the United States authorized by this RGP. The permittee shall comply with all terms and conditions of the Water Quality Certification.
5. Unanticipated Cultural Resource Discoveries. If you discover any previously unknown historic or archeological remains while accomplishing the activity authorized by this permit, you shall immediately notify the Corps of what you have found. Should any cultural resources, such as structural features, any amount of bone or shell, artifacts, human remains, or architectural remains, be encountered during any subsurface development activities, work shall be suspended within 100.0 feet of the find. The City of Roseville Planning and Public Works staff and the Corps shall be immediately notified. At that time, the City of Roseville and the Corps will coordinate any necessary investigation of the site, with qualified archaeologists as needed, to assess the resource (i.e. whether it is a historical resource, a unique archaeological resource, or a historic property) and provide proper management recommendations should potential impacts to resources be found to be significant or adverse. Possible management recommendations for important resources could include resource avoidance or, where avoidance is infeasible in light of project design or layout to avoid significant (adverse) effects, data recovery excavations. The contractor shall implement any measures deemed feasible and necessary by the City and Corps staff, in consultation with the archaeologists and California State Historic Preservation Officer, as appropriate, to avoid or minimize significant (adverse) effects to cultural resources. In addition, pursuant to Section 5097.98 of the State Public Resources Code, and Section 7050.5 of the State Health and Safety Code, in the event of the discovery of human remains, the County Coroner shall be immediately notified. If the remains are determined to be Native American, guidelines of the Native American Heritage Commission shall be adhered to in the treatment and disposition of the remains.
6. Best Management Practices. Best Management Practices (BMPs) must be employed during construction and in project design to protect water quality and minimize impacts of storm water runoff on aquatic resources. BMPs should be appropriately located in or adjacent to waters of the United States (e.g., silt curtains). The applicant shall employ the following BMPs, as appropriate, in designing and constructing the project. The applicant shall describe which BMPs are practicable as part of the notification procedure as per General Condition Number 12 and this General Condition Number 6:
a. Preservation of natural resource features on the project site as identified in Figure 4 (e.g., floodplains, wetlands, streams, and other drainage ways, grasslands, woodlands, and native soils);
b. Preservation of natural water infiltration and storage characteristics of the site;
c. Minimization of new impervious surfaces in project design (impervious surfaces may be minimized through practices such as reducing road widths and clustering developments
designed around open space);
d. Structural measures that provide water quality and quantity control,
e. Structural measures that provide only quantity control and conveyance,
f. Construction BMPs include: matting and filter fencing, or other barrier methods to intercept/capture sediment. Heavy equipment working in wetlands must be placed on mats, or employ other measures such as low ground pressure equipment, must be implemented to minimize soil disturbance.
7. Proper Maintenance. Any authorized infrastructure shall be properly maintained, including maintenance necessary to ensure public safety and the movement of aquatic organisms at all times.
8. Aquatic Life Movements. No activity may substantially disrupt the necessary life cycle movement of aquatic species indigenous to the water body, including those species that normally migrate through the area, unless the activity’s primary purpose is to impound water. Culverts placed in streams must be installed to maintain low-flow conditions, and should be designed as open-bottom culverts.
9. Suitable Material. No discharge of dredged or fill material may consist of unsuitable material and material discharged must be free from toxic pollutant in toxic amounts (Section 307 of the Clean Water Act). Unsuitable material includes, but is not limited to, trash, debris, car bodies, and asphalt.
a. You shall use only clean and nontoxic fill material for this project. The fill material shall be free from items such as trash, debris, automotive parts, asphalt, construction materials, and concrete with exposed reinforcement bars, and soils contaminated with any toxic substance, in toxic amounts in accordance with Section 307 of the Clean Water Act. In addition, you shall allow all newly poured concrete to cure for a minimum of seven days prior to coming into contact with open water.
10. Removal of Temporary Fills and Restoration of Affected Areas. Temporary fills shall be removed in their entirety and the affected areas returned to pre-construction elevations. The affected areas shall be re-vegetated with native and/or naturalized species common in the adjacent grasslands upon completion of the work. Temporary fills may not stay in place for more than three months within waters of the United States, including wetlands.
11. Compensatory Mitigation. Mitigation for impacts to waters of the United States must be compensated in amounts specified for each segment of backbone infrastructure (see Exhibit B and Figure 4).
a. Where the mitigation involves purchase of credits from an approved mitigation bank, these credits must be purchase and proof of purchase must be provided to the Corps prior to commencing the activity authorized by the RGP.
b. Where the mitigation involves creation of wetlands on-site, construction of the wetlands must begin concurrently with construction of the infrastructure segment(s) authorized by this RGP and must be completed within twelve months from the start of construction of the mitigation. All on-site mitigation must be constructed and completed in their entirety.
c. If the permittee elects to use permittee-sponsored mitigation, the mitigation and monitoring plan for the permittee-sponsored mitigation must be prepared, submitted to, and approved by, the Corps prior to initiating construction of the infrastructure segment(s) authorized by this RGP. Submittal and approval of the permittee-sponsored mitigation and monitoring plan must be completed prior to receiving authorization under this RGP.
d. You shall develop a final comprehensive mitigation and monitoring plan, which must be approved by the Army Corps of Engineers prior to initiation of construction activities within waters of the United States. The plan shall include mitigation location and design drawings, vegetation plans, including target species to be planted, and final success criteria, and shall be presented in the format of the Sacramento District's Habitat Mitigation and Monitoring Proposal Guidelines, dated December 30, 2004. The purpose of this requirement is to ensure replacement of functions of the aquatic environment that would be lost through project implementation.
12. Notification. The applicant shall provide written notification requesting authorization under this RGP prior to commencing work. The Corps’ receipt of the complete notification is the date when the Corps receive all required notification information from the applicant (listed below). Written notification shall include all of the following.
a. A letter signed by the applicant requesting authorization under the RGP including the specific segment(s) of backbone infrastructure to be constructed and the area (in square feet and acres) of waters of the United States that will be impacted.
b. The estimated start and completion date for the infrastructure segments to be constructed.
c. A vicinity map showing the infrastructure segments to be constructed in relation to the overall SVSP project and a plan drawing(s) showing the infrastructure segment(s) relative to existing waters of the United States. Where the infrastructure would involve a crossing of waters of the United States, the applicant will also include a cross-section drawing depicting the crossing relative to existing waters of the United States.
d. A tabulation of the direct and indirect effects (both permanent and temporary) and the required mitigation associated with the infrastructure segments (see Exhibit B). Where the required mitigation involves purchase of credits from an approved mitigation bank, the notification must include proof of purchase of the required credits. Where the mitigation associated with the infrastructure segments requires construction of wetlands on-site, the notification must clearly identify which segment(s) of wetlands will be constructed, what portion of the mitigation constructed (in acres) will be applied to the infrastructure segment for which authorization is being requested, and, if applicable, what portion (in acres) of the mitigation constructed will be available for satisfying other SVSP mitigation requirements.
e. If the mitigation involves permittee-sponsored mitigation and if the mitigation and monitoring plan for that mitigation has not been previously approved by the Corps, it must be included as part of the notification.
f. Representative color ground photographs taken of the site including the wetland areas.
13. Reporting Responsibilities. The permittee must submit a report to the Corps within 30 days of completion of the work authorized by this RGP. The completion report will contain the following:
a. The Corps’ file number.
b. Photographs showing the pre- and post-construction project conditions; Color ground photographs of the completed work. The cameral positions and view-angles of the ground photographs shall be identified on a map, aerial photograph, or project drawing. Copies of these photographs shall be submitted within the paper report and as a copy digital copy.
c. A completed compliance certificate.
d. As-built drawings and a description of the work conducted on the project site, within the on-site and/or off-site compensatory mitigation, or preservation, or avoidance area(s) to this office for review. The drawings shall be signed and sealed by a registered professional engineer and the biological monitor that oversaw the construction of the work.
e. A plan view drawing of the location of the authorized work footprint (as shown on the permit drawings) with an overlay of the work as constructed in the same scale as the attached permit drawings. The drawing should show all "earth disturbance," wetland impacts, structures, and the boundaries of any on-site and/or off-site mitigation or avoidance areas. The drawings shall contain, at a minimum, 1-foot topographic contours of the entire site.
14. Access. The permittee must allow representatives from the Corps to inspect the authorized activity at any time deemed necessary to ensure that the work is being or has been accomplished in accordance with the terms and conditions of this RGP.
15. Awareness Responsibility. You are responsible for all work authorized herein and ensuring that all contractors and workers are made aware and adhere to the terms and conditions of this permit authorization. You shall ensure that a copy of the permit authorization and associated drawings are available for quick reference at the project site until all construction activities are completed.
16. Construction Monitoring. You shall employ a qualified wetland scientist, who is familiar with vernal pools, to continuously monitor construction activities in the vicinity of waters of the United States to ensure against unauthorized activity occurring during construction. This monitor shall be on-site during all construction activities where waters of the United States are being filled and when construction is occurring within 250.0-feet of any preserved, and/or avoided, waters of the United States. If unauthorized activities do occur into waters of the United States, the monitor shall have the authority to stop work within waters of the United States immediately and notify our office at once. This monitor shall educate the construction workers about the sensitivities of the wetlands on-site, and the rare species of the area before work begins.
17. Migratory Bird Treaty Act and Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act. Activities in waters of the United States that serve as breeding areas for migratory birds must be avoided to the maximum extent practicable. An activity authorized under this RGP does not authorize the “take” of a migratory bird, including bald and golden eagles, as defined under the Federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act and the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act.
18. Federal Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act. All terms and conditions of the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act shall be met for any project authorized under this RGP.
19. On-site Stream Flows. The project must not permanently restrict or impede the passage of normal or expected high flows in the watercourse.
LIMITATIONS AND RESTRICTIONS FOR RGP:
1. The Corps has authority to determine if an activity complies with the terms and conditions of the RGP.
2. This RGP does not obviate the need to obtain other Federal, state, or local permits, approvals, or authorizations required by law.
3. This RGP does not grant any property rights or exclusive privileges.
4. This RGP does not authorize any injury to the property or rights of others.
5. This RGP does not authorize interference with any existing or proposed Federal project.
DEFINITIONS FOR RGP:
Activity is any discharge of dredged or fill material into waters of the United States under Section 404 of Clean Water Act.
Applicant is the individual, organization, or company requesting authorization under the RGP.
Authorization is written verification by the Corps that an activity qualifies for, and may proceed under, the RGP provided all terms and conditions of the RGP are followed.
Compensatory mitigation is the restoration, establishment (creation), enhancement, and/or in certain circumstances preservation of aquatic resources for the purposes of offsetting unavoidable adverse impacts which remain after all appropriate and practicable avoidance and minimization has been achieved.
Complete application is all required notification materials that must be submitted by the applicant to the Corps, as listed in General Condition Number 12. If all materials are not submitted, the application is considered incomplete and will not be processed under the RGP.
General conditions are RGP conditions that would apply to all activities authorized by this RGP.
Historic properties are as defined in 36 CFR Part 800.16(l). It means any prehistoric or historic district, site, building, structure, or object included in, or eligible for inclusion in, the National Register of Historic Places maintained by the Secretary of the Interior. This term includes artifacts, records, and remains that are related to and located within such properties. The term includes properties of traditional religious and cultural importance to an Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization and that meet the National Register criteria.
Impact is the direct and indirect loss of waters of the U.S., including wetlands, which results from implementation the activity.
Indirect impact is an impact that is caused by the activity, occurs later in time and is reasonably certain to occur. For purposes of this RGP, indirect effects refer to suitable habitat for listed branchiopods occurring in occupied watersheds located within 250 feet of the edge of the backbone infrastructure.
Listed branchiopods, for purposes of this RGP, are federally-listed species of branchiopods which have been documented as occurring in or near the SVSP project area. They include vernal pool fairy shrimp (Branchinecta lynchi) and vernal pool tadpole shrimp (Lepidurus packardi).
Loss of waters of the United States. This refers to waters that are permanently adversely affected by filling, flooding, excavation, or drainage because of the regulated activity. Permanent adverse effects include permanent discharges of dredge or fill material that change an aquatic area to dry land, increase the bottom elevation of a water body, or change the use of an aquatic feature. The acreage of loss of waters of the U.S. is a threshold measurement of the impact to jurisdictional waters for determining if the project may qualify for the RGP; it is not a net threshold that is calculated after considering compensatory mitigation that may be used to offset losses of aquatic functions and services.
Mitigation see “compensatory mitigation” definition.
Mitigation bank is a site where aquatic resources (e.g., wetlands, streams) are restored, established, enhanced, and/or preserved for the purpose of providing compensatory mitigation for impacts authorized by DA permits.
Notification is the submission of required information by the applicant to the Corps for a complete application.
On-site means located within one or more of the nine properties comprising the SVSP.
Off-site means located within the SVSP but not within one or more of the properties comprising the SVSP.
Permittee is an entity that has received authorization to conduct activities in waters of the United States under this RGP.
Permittee-responsible mitigation refers to a type of compensatory mitigation as defined in 33 CFR Part 332.2, entailing aquatic resource restoration, establishment, enhancement, and/or preservation activity undertaken by the permittee (or an authorized agent or contractor) to provide compensatory mitigation for which the permittee retains full responsibility.
Project site is the land, including waters of the U.S. and uplands, utilized for a single and complete project. The project site includes the land cleared, graded, and/or filled to construct the single and complete project, including any buildings, utilities, storm water management facilities, roads, yards, and other attendant features. Temporary construction areas (e.g., access and staging) are included. The project site also includes any other land and attendant features that are used in conjunction with the single and complete project, such as open space, roads and utilities.
Single and complete project is the “total project proposed or accomplished by one owner/developer or partnership or other association of owners/developers” (33 CFR 330.2[i]).
Special conditions are conditions added by the Corps for projects on a case-by case basis to ensure an activity has minimal impacts on aquatic resources and complies with the RGP. The Corps’ authority to require special conditions is provided in 33 CFR Part 325.4(a).
Suspension is the temporary cancellation of the authorization while a decision is made to modify, revoke or reinstate the authorization.
Terms and conditions are the parameters, including thresholds, limitations and requirements, for completing an activity under the RGP. These parameters are described in each Activity category and in the General Conditions. Special conditions may also be added by the Corps on individual authorizations to ensure an activity has minimal individual and cumulative impacts.
Waters of the United States are as defined in 33 CFR Part 328.3(a). For purposes of wetlands regulated under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act under this RGP, the identification and delineation of wetlands must be in accordance with the most recent guidance and wetland delineation manual and manual supplement issued by the Corps.
Definitions found at 33 CFR Parts 320-323, 325-329, and 331-332 and 40 CFR Part 230 are also applicable to this RGP and are incorporated by reference herein.
REEVALUATION OF RGP: This office may reevaluate its decision on this permit, or on the verification that any particular activity qualifies for this RGP, at any time circumstances warrant review as determined by this office. Circumstances that could require a reevaluation include, but are not limited to, the following:
a. You fail to comply with the terms and conditions of this permit.
b. The information provided by you proves to have been false, incomplete, or inaccurate.
c. Significant new information surfaces which this office did not consider in reaching the original public interest decision.
Such a reevaluation may result in a determination that it is appropriate to use the suspension, modification, and revocation procedures contained in 33 CFR 325.7 or enforcement procedures such as those contained in 33 CFR 326.4 and 326.5. The referenced enforcement procedure provide for the issuance of an administrative order requiring you to comply with the terms and conditions of your permit and for the initiation of legal action where appropriate. You will be required to pay for any corrective measures ordered by this office, and if you fail to comply with such directive, this office may, in certain situations (such as those specified in 33 CFG 209.170), accomplish the corrective measures by contract or otherwise and bill you for the cost.
Environmental Setting. The project site is characterized by gently rolling topography and large, open annual grassland areas. The site’s natural features include Curry Creek, which flows in a westerly direction and traverses the southeastern and the southwestern portions of the site; a small seasonal swale (locally known as Federico Creek), which flows through the northern portion of the site and joins Curry Creek near Watt Avenue; and an unnamed tributary to Curry Creek that also flows west across the northern portion of the project site. Seasonal wetlands, including vernal pools, are scattered throughout the site. Approximately 90 trees are present on the site with the majority of these occurring in a eucalyptus stand and along Curry Creek.
Alternatives. Chapter 2 of the Draft EIS, Proposed Action and Alternatives, provides a complete description of each of the alternatives analyzed. The alternatives considered in detail are: (a) No Action Alternative (no discharge of dredged and/or fill material into waters of the U.S.); (b) Proposed Action Alternative, the applicant group’s preferred alternative; (c) Reduced Footprint/Increased Density Alternative; (d) Reduced Footprint/Same Density Alternative; (e) Focused Avoidance Alternative; and (f) Southwest Site, an off-site alternative located in Southwest Placer County. The FEIS provides a summary of the proposed alternatives plus a copy of the comments received on the Draft EIS.
Mitigation. Chapter 3 of the Draft EIS, Affected Environment and Environmental Consequences, provides a complete description of the effects or impacts associated with each alternative as well as mitigation measures. The Corps requires that applicants consider and use all reasonable and practical measures to avoid and minimize impacts to aquatic resources. If the applicant is unable to avoid or minimize all impacts, the Corps may require compensatory mitigation. The applicant has proposed a conceptual mitigation plan which includes onsite preservation, onsite establishment, and offsite establishment, restoration and preservation components. The FEIS publishes the comments received on the Draft EIS.
Onsite Preservation and Restoration
The conceptual mitigation plan proposes preservation of 13.7 acres of wetlands and other waters of the US on the project site in perpetuity and managed to maintain their resource functions and values. These would be preserved within the designated open space on the project site. The open space areas include stream corridors of Curry Creek and Federico Creek and wetlands in close proximity to these streams. Approximately 100-foot buffers would be established along the two corridors to minimize indirect impacts to the preserved wetlands from the Proposed Action.
Onsite Wetlands Establishment
According to the conceptual mitigation plan, a total of 28.24 acres of wetlands will be constructed on the project site. The wetlands will be located on low terraces excavated adjacent to the existing stream channels along the inside of stream meanders and along relatively straight reaches so as to avoid being intercepted by the natural meandering of the creek channel.
Offsite Establishment, Restoration and Preservation
According to the conceptual mitigation plan, the Applicants will provide permittee-responsible preservation and/or restoration at an offsite location or secure creation/restoration credits for 7.98 acres of constructed vernal pools and preservation credits for 14.93 acres of vernal pools from an approved mitigation bank in western Placer County within the bank’s approved service area.
OTHER GOVERNMENTAL AUTHORIZATIONS: Water quality certification or a waiver, as required under Section 401 of the Clean Water Act from the Central Valley Water Board is required for this project. The Corps is in the process of applying for certification.
HISTORIC PROPERTIES: The Corps will initiate consultation with the State Historic Preservation Officer under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, as appropriate.
ENDANGERED SPECIES: The proposed activity may affect Federally-listed endangered or threatened species or their critical habitat. The Corps will initiate consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act, as appropriate.
ESSENTIAL FISH HABITAT: The proposed project will not adversely affect Essential Fish Habitat (EFH) as defined in the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act.
The above determinations are based on information provided by the applicant and our preliminary review.
EVALUATION FACTORS: The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impacts, including cumulative impacts, of the described 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 described activity, must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments. All factors which may be relevant to the described activity will be considered, including the cumulative effects thereof; among those are conservation, economics, aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, historic properties, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, floodplain 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 activity's impact on the public interest will include application of the Section 404(b)(1) guidelines promulgated by the Administrator, Environmental Protection Agency (40 CFR Part 230).
The Corps 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 impacts of this proposed activity. Any comments received will be considered by the Corps 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 other public interest factors listed above. Comments are also used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity.
SUBMITTING COMMENTS: Written comments, referencing Public Notice SPK-2006-01050 must be submitted to the office listed below on or before 8 July 2013.
Kathy Norton, Sr. Project Manager
US Army Corps of Engineers, Sacramento District
1325 J Street, Room 1350, Sacramento, California 95814-2922
The Corps is particularly interested in receiving comments related to the proposal's probable impacts on the affected aquatic environment and the secondary and cumulative effects. Anyone may request, in writing, that a public hearing be held to consider this application. Requests shall specifically state, with particularity, the reason(s) for holding a public hearing. If the Corps determines that the information received in response to this notice is inadequate for thorough evaluation, a public hearing may be warranted. If a public hearing is warranted, interested parties will be notified of the time, date, and location. Please note that all comment letters received are subject to release to the public through the Freedom of Information Act. If you have questions or need additional information please contact the applicants; the applicant’s consultant, Gibson & Skordal, at 916-882-3230; or the Corps' project manager Kathy Norton at 916-557-5260 or firstname.lastname@example.org.