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LRH-2011-217-TUS

Published Jan. 30, 2013
Expiration date: 2/26/2013

TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN: The following application has been submitted for a Department of the Army Permit under the provisions of Section 404 of the Clean Water Act. This notice serves as the Corps' request to the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency to act on Section 401 Water Quality Certification for the following application.

The following application has been submitted for a Department of the Army Permit under the provisions of Section 404 of the Clean Water Act. This notice serves as the Corps' request to the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency to act on Section 401 Water Quality Certification for the following application.

APPLICANT: Carroll County Land Company 95 North Lisbon Street Carrollton, Ohio 44615

LOCATION: The proposed project is located in wetlands adjacent to Sandy Creek, between Lippincott Road and Lynchburg Road in West Township, Columbiana County, Ohio. The project can be found near latitude 40.74094 and longitude -81.00237.

DESCRIPTION OF PROPOSED WORK: The applicant has requested authorization to discharge 4,955 cubic yards of dredged or fill material into 0.7 acre of Wetland A and approximately 0.01 acre of Wetland B for the construction of a new roadway that will connect the Lynchburg Road to the Lippincott Road near State Route 30. Additionally, 0.7 acre of Wetland A would be temporarily impacted. The applicant has indicated that the expansion and operation of the Carroll County Land Company train loading facility (located east of the Lynchburg Road) will cause train units to block the railroad crossing on the Lynchburg Road.

ALTERNATIVES ANALYSIS: The project does not require access or proximity to or siting within the wetlands to fulfill its basic purpose and is considered a non-water dependent activity. The Section 404(b)(l) Guidelines state that for non-water dependent activities in special aquatic sites, practicable alternatives that do not involve wetlands are presumed to be available, unless clearly demonstrated otherwise. The applicant is required to provide an alternatives analysis that must overcome the presumption prior to receiving authorization for the placement of fill material into the wetland. The applicant has submitted an alternatives analysis and it is currently being reviewed. No permit will be issued until our review of the alternatives analysis clearly shows that upland alternatives are not available to achieve the applicant's goal.

AVOIDANCE AND MINIMIZATION: The applicant has indicated that practical measures to avoid and minimize impacts to potential waters of the United States were considered. Such measures include the limitation of temporary impacts. Under the applicant's preferred design, the work would permanently impact 0.71 acre of wetland. The applicant has taken steps to reduce the construction limits around Wetland A and that will reduce the temporary surface disturbance associated with the project. Additionally, the applicant has included one culvert in Wetland A to maintain hydrologic connectivity to Sandy Creek. 

The applicant has indicated that practical measures to avoid and minimize impacts to potential waters of the United States were considered. Such measures include the limitation of temporary impacts. Under the applicant's preferred design, the work would permanently impact 0.71 acre of wetland. The applicant has taken steps to reduce the construction limits around Wetland A and that will reduce the temporary surface disturbance associated with the project. Additionally, the applicant has included one culvert in Wetland A to maintain hydrologic connectivity to Sandy Creek. 

COMPENSATORY MITIGATION PLAN: The applicant has proposed to purchase 2.1 acres of wetland mitigation credits from the Little Scioto Wetlands Mitigation Bank.

WATER QUALITY CERTIFICATION: A Section 401 Water Quality Certification is required for this project. It is the applicant's responsibility to obtain certification from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency.

HISTORIC & CULTURAL RESOURCES: The National Register ofHistoric Places (NRHP) has been consulted and it has been determined there are no properties currently listed on the NRHP which would be directly affected by the proposed work. An archaeological summary and walkover were performed for the proposed project site by Professional Archaeological Services Team (PAST). Our office is currently reviewing this survey. A copy ofthis public notice and a copy of the archaeological summary will be furnished to the State Historic Preservation Office for their review. Comments concerning archaeological sensitivity of the project area should be based on collected data.

THREATENED & ENDANGERED SPECIES: The project is located within the known or historic range of the following federally endangered (E), or threatened (T) species: Indiana bat (E), sheepnose mussel (E), snuffbox mussel (E). The Corps has consulted the most recent information available to make an effects determination. The Indiana bat prefers riparian areas and wetlands containing mature forested habitat with little understory that includes trees with dead snags, exfoliating bark, or crevices. The sheepnose mussel is primarily found in larger streams, in shallow shoal habitats with moderate to swift currents over coarse sand and gravel while the snuffbox prefers small to medium sized streams to larger rivers and lakes. The proposed project area lacks suitable habitat for all three endangered species. As a result, the Corps has determined that the proposed project will have no effect on the Indiana bat, the sheepnose mussel, or the snuffbox mussel. This public notice serves as a request to the USFWS for any additional information they may have on whether any listed or proposed to be listed endangered or threatened species may be present in the area which would be affected by the activity, pursuant to Section 7(c) of the Endangered Species Act of 1972 (as amended).

PUBLIC INTEREST REVIEW AND COMMENT: Any person who has an interest that may be adversely affected by the issuance of a permit may request a public hearing. The request must be submitted in writing to the District Engineer on or before the expiration date of this notice and must clearly set forth the interest which may be adversely affected and the manner in which the interest may be adversely affected by the activity. This application will be reviewed in accordance with 33 CFR 320-332, the Regulatory Program of the Corps, and other pertinent laws, regulations, and executive orders. Our evaluation will also follow the guidelines published by the United States Environmental Protection Agency pursuant to Section 404(b) (1) of the CWA. Interested parties are invited to state any objections they may have to the proposed work. 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. That decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources. The benefit that reasonably may be expected to accrue from the proposal must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments. All factors that may be relevant to the proposal will be considered including the cumulative effects thereof; of 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, considerations of property ownership and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people. Written statements on these factors received in this office on or before the expiration date of this public notice will become a part of the record and will be considered in the final determination. A permit will be granted unless its issuance is found to be contrary to the public interest.

SOLICITATION OF COMMENTS: 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. For accuracy and completeness of the administrative record, all data in support of or in opposition to the proposed work should be submitted in writing setting forth sufficient detail to furnish a clear understanding of the reasons for support or opposition. 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 the other public interest factors listed above. 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 need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity.

CLOSE OF COMMENT PERIOD: All comments pertaining to this Public Notice must reach this office on or before the close of the comment period listed on page one of this Public Notice. If no comments are received by that date, it will be considered that there are no objections. Comments and requests for additional information should be submitted to:

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

ATTN: CELRH-RD-N Public Notice: LRH-2011-00217-TUS

502 Eighth Street

Huntington, West Virginia 25701-2070

Please note names and addresses of those who submit comments in response to this public notice become part of our administrative record and, as such, are available to the public under provisions of the Freedom oflnformation Act. Thank you for your interest in our nation's water resources. If you have any questions concerning this public notice, please contact Megan Oberst of the Dover Regulatory Field Office at (330) 364-6177.