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Posted: 5/24/2017

Expiration date: 6/19/2017

Application for Permit

Issue Date: May 19, 2017
Expiration Date: June 19, 2017
US Army Corps of Engineers No: NWP-2016-549
Oregon Department of State Lands No: N/A

30-Day Notice 

Interested parties are hereby notified the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Portland District (Corps) has received an application for a Department of the Army permit for certain work in waters of the United States, as described below and shown on the attached plans. The Corps is soliciting comments on the proposed work.

Applicant: Oregon Department of Transportation (Region 5)
Attention: Mr. Richard E. Jerofke
3012 Island Avenue
La Grande, Oregon 97850
E-mail: Richard.E.Jerjavascript:void(0)ofke@odot.state.or.us
Telephone: (541) 963-1368

Location: The project site is located on OR 82 (Wallowa Lake Highway No. 10) from Mile Point (MP) 30.02 to MP 30.36 in Union County, Elgin, Oregon. The site is in Sections 6 and 7, Township 1 North, Range 41 East. Latitude and Longitude: 45.5849 North, -117.7346 West (Minam Curve Realignment) 

Waterway: The waterway is an unnamed tributary (Tributary A) to the Minam River approximately at Latitude and Longitude 45.5914 North, -117.7441 West. Tributary A is a seasonally intermittent, non-fish bearing stream that is approximately 2.5 miles long at a mean elevation of 3,580 feet. The drainage area of Tributary A is approximately 2.3 square miles and consists of dry grassy rolling terrain with steep forested slopes in the lower portion. 

Project Purpose:
The project purpose is to dispose of fill material generated from realignment of OR 82. 

Project Description: The proposed work in waters of the U.S. would fill approximately 1,860 linear feet (0.68 acre) of Tributary A. The source of fill material would be from the Minam Curve realignment excavation at Mile Post (MP) 30.70. The project proposes to realign OR 82 at Minam Curve by excavating a through-cut through the hillside north of the current road location. The through-cut excavation would generate approximately 400,000 cubic yards of material (mostly rock).

The project also proposes to repair slope/roadway failures and overly steep roadway side slopes between MP 30.02 and MP 30.36 by placing fill to construct a slope buttress in the channel valley at a 1-foot vertical to 2.5-foot horizontal slope. The modified road slope angle would fill in the channel of Tributary A (1,860 linear feet / 0.68 acre) and extend the buttress to the valley wall opposite the roadway. The buttress fill would increase the bottom elevation of the Tributary A valley at the project site by approximately 35 feet. The Tributary A channel would be reconstructed on top of the buttress fill. Flow from Tributary A would be redirected into the new channel. The new channel would reconnect to Tributary A above and below the buttress fill area. Construction of the new channel would include installation of a low permeability soil liner to seal the bed and banks of the channel. Gravels, sands, and fines would be pressure washed into the channel to seal voids in the substrate. 

To facilitate the proposed work in Tributary A, the work includes the temporary placement of fill in Tributary A for a temporary water management system (isolation dams, energy dissipator, and bypass pipe). The temporary water management system would be installed to dewater the reach of Tributary A located within the buttress fill area. 

Mitigation: During construction, erosion control measures would be installed to reduce the amount and intensity of sediment discharge downstream from the newly constructed channel. A new stream channel would be constructed on the buttress fill area to maintain flow continuity between the upstream and downstream portions of Tributary A. 

The applicant has provided a proposed compensatory mitigation plan to offset losses of waters of the U.S. that may result from the proposed project. The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) would provide off-site permittee responsible compensatory mitigation by constructing a side channel (Channel D) as a portion of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife Wallowa River-Baker Project. Construction of Channel D would provide approximately 1,200 linear feet of new perennial fish bearing stream habitat, create approximately 0.9 acre of new floodplain, and establish approximately 0.9 acre of riparian vegetation dominated by multiple woody species. The Corps will determine the type and amount of compensatory mitigation necessary to offset environmental losses from the proposed project.

Drawings: Eight (8) drawings are attached and labeled Corps No.: NWP-2016-549. Copies of this public notice, which have been mailed or otherwise physically distributed, feature project drawings in black and white. The electronic version features those drawings in color, which we think more accurately illustrates the proposed project. To access the electronic version of this public notice, go to the Portland District website at http://www.nwp.usace.army.mil/ and select Regulatory Branch Permit Information. At the Regulatory page select Regulatory Public Notices.

Authority: The proposed project will be evaluated under the following:
Section 404, Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1344), for discharge of dredged or fill material into waters of the United States.

Clean Water Act Section 404(b)(1) Guidelines: The described discharge will be evaluated for compliance with guidelines promulgated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency under authority of Section 404(b)(1) of the Clean Water Act. The 404(b)(1) Guidelines are the substantive criteria used in evaluating discharges of dredged or fill material into waters of the United States. The source of the fill material would be excess material (mostly rock) generated from realigning a portion of OR 82. 

Water Quality Certification: Section 401 of the Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1341) requires applicants to obtain a water quality certification for proposed discharges into waters of the United States. A permit for the described work will not be issued until certification has been issued or is waived from the certifying state. Attached is the state's notice for a water quality certification.

Endangered Species: Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act (ESA) (16 U.S.C 1536) requires federal agencies to consult with the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) and/or U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) on all actions that may affect a species listed (or proposed for listing) under the ESA as threatened or endangered or that may adversely modify designated critical habitat. The Corps’ preliminary review indicates the described activity may affect endangered species or designated critical habitat. For this project, the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), as the lead Federal agency for ESA consultation, will consult with the NMFS and the USFWS as required under Section 7 of the ESA. 

Essential Fish Habitat: Section 305(b)(2) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA) as amended (16 U.S.C 1855), requires 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). The Corps’ preliminary review indicates the described activity would adversely affect EFH at the project location or in its vicinity. For this project, the FHWA, as the lead Federal agency for MSA consultation, will consult with the NMFS as necessary. 

Historic Properties/Cultural Resources: Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) of 1966, as amended (16 U.S.C. 470), requires Federal agencies to consult with the appropriate State and/or Tribal Historic Preservation Officer to take into account the effects of actions they undertake or permit on historic properties listed in or eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places. For this project, the FHWA, as the lead Federal agency for determining compliance with Section 106 of the NHPA, will consult with the appropriate State and/or Tribal Historic Preservation Officer as applicable. An historic properties investigation has been conducted within the permit area and no sites determined eligible for or listed on the National Register of Historic Places were found to exist within the permit area.

This notice has been provided to the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), interested Native American Indian Tribes, and other interested parties. If you have information pertaining to cultural resources within the permit area, please provide this information to the Corps’ project manager identified at the end of this notice to assist in a complete evaluation of potential effects.

State and Local Authorizations: The applicant will be applying for a Removal/Fill permit from the Department of State Lands (DSL). 

Public Hearing: Any person may request in writing within the comment period specified in this notice that a public hearing be held to consider this application. Requests for public hearings shall state with particularity the reasons for holding a public hearing.

Evaluation: The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impact, 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 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 the proposed project. Comments received will be considered by the Corps to determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for this proposal. 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.

Submitting Comments: Interested parties are invited to provide comments on the proposed project. Comments may be submitted by conventional mail or email. All comments received will be considered in determining whether authorizing the work would be contrary to the public interest. 

Either conventional mail or e-mail comments must include the Corps reference number as shown on page 1 and include the commenter’s name and address. In order to be accepted, e-mail comments must originate from the author’s e-mail account and must include on the subject line of the e-mail message the Corps reference number. All comments received will become part of the administrative record and are subject to public release under the Freedom of Information Act including any personally identifiable information such as names, phone numbers, and addresses.

Additional information about the proposed project may be obtained from the Corps Project Manager listed below. All comments, whether by conventional mail or e-mail, must be received no later than the expiration date of this public notice to ensure consideration. Comments should be submitted to the following mailing address or email address:

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Regulatory Branch
Ms. Carrie Bond 
P.O. 2946
Portland, Oregon 97208-2946
Email: Carrie.L.Bond@usace.army.mil
Telephone: (503) 808-4387

Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ)
Water Quality 401 Certification

Notice Issued: May 19, 2017
Written Comments Due: June 19, 2017

Corps of Engineers No: NWP-2016-549
Oregon Department of State Lands No: N/A

WHO IS THE APPLICANT: Oregon Department of Transportation (Region 5)

LOCATION OF CERTIFICATION ACTIVITY: See attached U.S. Army Corps of Engineers public notice.

WHAT IS PROPOSED: See attached U.S. Army Corps of Engineers public notice on the proposed project.

NEED FOR CERTIFICATION: Section 401 of the Federal Clean Water Act requires applicants for Federal permits or licenses to provide the Federal agency a water quality certification from the State of Oregon if the proposed activity may result in a discharge to waters of the state.

DESCRIPTION OF DISCHARGES: See attached U.S. Army Corps of Engineers public notice on the proposed project.

WHERE TO FIND DOCUMENTS: Documents and materials related to water quality issues as a result of the proposal are available for examination and copying at Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, 401 Water Quality Certification Coordinator, Northwest Region, 
700 NE Multnomah Street, Suite 600, Portland, Oregon 97232. Other project materials are available by contacting the Corps per the attached public notice.

Scheduling an appointment will ensure that water quality documents are readily accessible during your visit. To schedule an appointment please call DEQ Water Quality at Northwest Region at (503) 229-5263.

Any questions on the water quality certification process may be addressed to the 401 Program Coordinator at (503) 229-6030 or toll free within Oregon at (800) 452-4011. People with hearing impairments may call the Oregon Telecommunications Relay Service at 1-800-735-2900.

Public Hearing: Oregon Administrative Rule (OAR) 340-48-0032 (2) states that “The Corps provides public notice of and opportunity to comment on the applications, including the application for certification, provided that the department (DEQ), in its discretion, may provide additional opportunity for public comment, including public hearing.” 

Written comments:
Written comments on project elements related to water quality must be received at the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality by 5 p.m. on the date specified in the upper right section on page one of this notice. Written comments may be emailed, mailed or faxed as described below: 

E-mail - 401publiccomments@deq.state.or.us

Mail - Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, Northwest Region
700 NE Multnomah Street, Suite 600
Portland, Oregon 97232 
Attn: 401 Water Quality Certification Coordinator 

Fax - (503) 229-6957

WHAT HAPPENS NEXT: DEQ will review and consider all comments received during the public comment period. Following this review, certification of the proposal may be issued as proposed, issued with conditions, or denied. You will be notified of DEQ's final decision if you submit comments during the comment period. Otherwise, if you wish to receive notification, please call or write DEQ at the above address.

ACCESSIBILITY INFORMATION: This publication is available in alternate format (e.g. large print, Braille) upon request. Please contact DEQ Office of Communications and Outreach at (503) 229-5317 or toll free within Oregon at 1-800-452-4011 to request an alternate format. People with a hearing impairment can receive help by calling the Oregon Telecommunications Relay Service at 1-800-735-2900.

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