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 United States Army Corps of Engineers’ (Corps) request to the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection to act on Section 401 Water Quality Certification for the following application.
APPLICANT: City of Hurricane
P.O. Box 1086
Hurricane, West Virginia 25526
LOCATION: The proposed project would be located near the City of Hurricane Water Treatment plant, adjacent to the Hurricane City Park, along State Route 34, near Hurricane, Putnam County, West Virginia, as depicted in the attached Location Map (Drawing 1). The unnamed streams within the project area are tributaries to Mill Creek, a tributary to the Kanawha River. The Kanawha River is a traditionally navigable water of the United States (U.S.). The project site is located at latitude 38.4385º, longitude -81.9821º.
PROJECT HISTORY: This office issued a public notice for a similar proposal under Public Notice LRH-2008-812-Revised, which was issued on November 10, 2010 and expired December 10, 2010. The applicant has revised the project design to reduce proposed impacts to waters of the U.S.
The City of Hurricane (City) currently consumes approximately 700,000 gallons of potable water per day. The existing raw storage reservoir at the water plant has a capacity of approximately 36 million gallons (approximately 51days). Additional reservoirs, located approximately 1.3 mile east of the water plant, which gravity feed the main reservoir during drought periods, have an additional capacity of 11 million gallons (approximately 16 days). During extended periods of drought the City of Hurricane must outsource treated water from Putnam Public Service District.
DESCRIPTION OF PROPOSED WORK: The applicant proposes to discharge dredged or fill material into waters of the United States to facilitate the construction of a Raw Water Storage Impoundment to provide for the storage of approximately 3.7 million gallons of untreated water (5 days of additional storage capacity).
The proposed impoundment structure would be constructed of approximately 10,000 cubic yards of material consisting of a clay core covered with a mixture of soil, granular material and soft shale compacted in a six-inch layer. The height to the crest of the impoundment structure would be 19.5 feet and the height to the emergency spillway would be 16 feet. The height to the riser would be 15 feet which would result in a 2.0-acre reservoir surface area with a capacity of 3,722,450 gallons. The construction of the proposed impoundment structure would result in the permanent discharge of fill material into 120 linear feet of one stream. The constructed impoundment would permanently inundate 916 linear feet of stream, consisting of 748 linear feet of five streams and 168 linear feet of one intermittent stream, through the conversion of riverine to palustrine habitat. Plans of the proposal are attached to this notice.
ALTERNATIVES ANALYSIS: A total of 916 linear feet of jurisdictional streams would be impacted as a result of the proposal. The applicant is preparing the required alternatives analysis for review. No permit will be issued until our office determines practicable upland alternatives are not available to achieve the overall project purpose based upon the applicant’s alternative analysis. Upon receipt of the alternatives analysis, a complete copy may be reviewed by appointment at the above address.
AVOIDANCE AND MINIMIZATION: In evaluating a project area containing waters of the United States, consideration must be given to avoiding impacts on these sites. A total of approximately 2,369 linear feet of perennial streams, 1,252 linear feet of intermittent stream and 0.372 acre palustrine emergent wetland subject to Section 404 Clean Water Act regulation exist within the proposed project area. Avoidance and minimization efforts were incorporated into the proposal. The applicant has revised the proposal advertised on November 10, 2010, to eliminate wetland impact and to reduce stream impacts.
COMPENSATORY MITIGATION PLAN: The applicant has proposed payment to the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection for the unavoidable loss of 120 linear feet of
perennial stream associated with the impoundment structure. The applicant has indicated maintenance of the 2.0-acre impounded storage area is adequate mitigation for the conversion of 916 linear feet of riverine habitat to palustrine habitat.
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 West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection.
HISTORIC AND CULTURAL RESOURCES: The National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) has been consulted and it has been determined there are no properties currently listed on the NRHP which would be indirectly or directly affected by the proposed work. Comments concerning archaeological sensitivity of the project area should be based on collected data.
THREATENED AND ENDANGERED SPECIES: The proposed project is located within the known or historic range of the following threatened (T), proposed endangered or endangered (E) species:
Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis)
Northern long-eared bat (Myotis septentrionalis)
Virginia big-eared bat (Corynorhinus townsendii virginianus)
According to information obtained from the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) concerning the distribution of federally listed threatened and endangered species in West Virginia, habitat for the Indiana bat exists throughout the state. The total surface area disturbance for this project is 4.8 acres. The USFWS has determined a surface area disturbance of less than 17 acres would not likely result in the adverse impact to the Indiana bat. Based on this information, it is the Corps determination that the proposed projects would have no effect on the Indiana bat. The proposed project also lies within the range of the Northern long-eared bat (Myotis septentrionalis), a proposed endangered species. Through preliminary correspondence between the Corps and USFWS, the USWFS stated there are no recommendations yet for the Northern long- eared bat. They indicated habitat is similar to the Indiana bat and SLOPES coordination conducted for the Indiana bat would be applicable to the Northern long-eared bat. As a result, it is the Corps determination that the proposed projects would have no effect on the Northern long eared bat
The Virginia big-eared bat may occur in mine portals and caves throughout the state. There are no known mine portals and caves in the project area. The Corps has determined therefore the proposed project would have no effect on the Virginia big-eared bat.
This Public Notice serves as a request to the United States Fish and Wildlife Service 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 CUMULATIVE EFFECTS: 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 Clean Water Act (40 CFR part 230). The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the 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 that may be relevant to the proposal will be considered including the cumulative effects thereof; among those factors 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.
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 person may request, in writing, within the comment period specified in the notice, that a public hearing be held to consider the application. Requests for public hearings shall state, with particularity, the reasons for holding a public hearing. 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. Written statements 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.
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:
United States Army Corps of Engineers
Public Notice No. LRH-2008-812-LKR
502 Eighth Street
Huntington, West Virginia 25701
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 of Information Act. Thank you for your interest in our nation’s water resources. If you have any questions concerning this Public Notice, please contact Richard Hemann of the South/Transportation Branch, at 304-399-5710, by mail at the above address, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.