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Public Notices


Published Jan. 17, 2014
Expiration date: 2/17/2014

Interested parties are hereby notified that an application has been received for a Department of the Army permit for certain work in waters of the United States as described below and shown on the attached drawings.

APPLICANT: Mr. Derek George, Marine Corps Base Hawaii

AGENT: Mr. Aaron Poentis, Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Hawaii

LOCATION: Waterfront Operations Facility at the end of Sumner Road at the extreme western end of Marine Corps Base Hawaii on Kaneohe Bay, Island of Oahu, Hawaii (TMK: (1) 4-4-08:001).  Latitude: 21.450070 N; Longitude:  -157.777581 W

PROPOSED WORK: The proposed work includes the demolition of an existing 11.8-feet-wide by 61.4-feet-long, concrete boat ramp followed by the construction of a new boat ramp which would be 15.7-feet wide and 82.7-feet long.  To accomplish this, the proposed work plan includes the relocation of corals in the vicinity of the boat ramp located on both existing rip rap and natural substrate, as detailed in the attachments and the Navy’s letter dated March 14, 2013, to the National Marine Fisheries Service (see also Mitigation below).

Once coral relocation is complete, full-depth silt/turbidity curtains would be deployed around the construction area prior to in-water work. Existing rip-rap material would be relocated by hand to adjacent areas outside of the construction area.  Demolition of the existing concrete boat ramp would include the removal of 637 square feet of existing concrete ramp slabs by using an excavator to “bite” off pieces to be lifted safely out of the water. After removal of the concrete slabs, the same excavator would be used to excavate the footprint of the new boat ramp, which would include the removal and disposal of 21.5 cubic yards of material. The Manitowoc M80 crane with clamshell bucket would be used to excavate the pocket for the toe of the ramp.

The Manitowoc M80 crane would be used to lay 20.5 cubic yards of the new graded granular fill base cushion for the new boat ramp, and a weighted screed beam would be used to level the granular fill into the final position underwater on a steel beam leveling frame. The crane would then be used to place rip rap at the base of the ramp to lock in and support the weight of the pre-cast panels.  Using the crane, new precast concrete panels would be lowered into place on top of the leveling frame to form the deck surface of the new boat ramp.

All heavy equipment would remain on land above the mean high tide line, and only the cable rigging and bucket of the crane/arm and bucket of the excavator would enter the water during the course of the work. Please see the attached for additional information on the proposed demolition and reconstruction of the boat ramp.

PURPOSE: To provide adequate access from the Waterfront Operations Facility on Marine Corps Base Hawaii to Kaneohe Bay for emergency responders and capability for launch and recovery of vessels as efficiently and safely as possible for daily training and operations.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: The discharge of fill material would be necessary to construct the replacement boat ramp and to ensure its stability after construction.  Fill materials that would be discharged include new geotextile, granular fill base course and steel leveling frame to support the new boat ramp, pre-cast concrete slabs, and new rock rip rap to be installed around the sides of the new boat ramp to prevent erosion.

PLEASE NOTE: Application included the proposed construction of an outfall in addition to the reconstruction of the boat ramp. The outfall construction was provisionally authorized under Nationwide Permit #7 at an earlier date pending receipt of Water Quality Certification from the Department of Health – Clean Water Branch. Therefore, the proposed information being reviewed is only for the proposed boat ramp reconstruction per this public notice.

MITIGATION: Best management practices (BMPs) that would be implemented during construction include the use of full-depth silt curtains to enclose all in-water work; bermed drying area where excavated material will be dried out in a designated containment cell, which would be bermed on all sides and lined with impermeable plastic sheeting to prevent return water to the bay; relocation of rip rap by divers rather than machinery for minimal disturbance to the adjacent aquatic environment; secondary containment for fuel; and avoidance measures for the protection of marine life.

Avoidance and minimization of effects to coral reef adjacent to the proposed project site would include the transplantation of coral colonies to suitable receptor sites on the adjacent reef.  This action would occur prior to the start of in-water construction work.  All transplanting would be done during high tide.  Trained divers would carefully count, identify, label, and move corals a short distance (less than 75 feet) to a nearby reef. Divers would remove coral by hand using chisels and prying.  The corals would not be removed from the water at any time, would be kept at the same depth during relocation to avoid stress, and would be moved to a non-marginal habitat for increased likelihood of survival. Divers would assess the receiving area and mark suitable areas with floats/tags.  Coral colonies would be wedged and secured into the interstitial spaces in the receiving areas. Markers would be installed for future identification and monitoring. No chemicals would be used. Please see the attached letter from the Navy to the National Marine Fisheries Service for additional details on the coral transplantation plan.

The applicant’s proposed work did not specifically identify any compensatory mitigation.

WATER QUALITY CERTIFICATION: The Corps may not issue a DA permit for any activity that may result in a discharge into waters of the United States until the applicant has obtained from the State of Hawaii Department of Health a certification or waiver of certification as required under Section 401 of the Clean Water Act.

COASTAL ZONE MANAGEMENT ACT CERTIFICATION: Section 307 of the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, as amended, requires federal activities directly affecting land or water uses in the Coastal Zone to be conducted in a manner which is, to the maximum extent practicable, consistent with the enforceable policies of the State’s approved Coastal Zone Management Program.  Marine Corps Base Hawaii (MCBH) has determined, by letter dated March 5, 2009, that the proposed project is located on Federal land and within the “Defensive Sea Area”, which are excluded from the State’s coastal zone.  In addition, MCBH has determined there would be no reasonable, foreseeable direct or indirect effects on any coastal use or resources of the State’s coastal zone.

CULTURAL RESOURCES: MCBH has determined, by letter dated February 11, 2009, that the proposed project would result in no historic properties affected within the area of potential affect. By letter dated February 23, 2009, the State Historic Preservation Office concurred with MCBH’s determination.

ENDANGERED SPECIES: Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act (ESA) requires federal agencies to consult with the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) and/or U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to ensure that any action they authorize, fund, or carry out is not likely to jeopardize the continued existence of species listed as threatened or endangered under the ESA or result in the destruction or adverse modification of designated critical habitat. 

By letter dated March 5, 2009 to NMFS, MCBH determined that the proposed project would not adversely affect species listed as threatened or endangered and requested concurrence. By letter dated April 20, 2009, NMFS concurred with MCBH’s determination that the proposed project may affect, but would not likely adversely affect ESA-listed marine species or their designated critical habitat.

By letter dated January 14, 2009 to USFWS, MCBH determined that the proposed project may affect, but would not likely adversely affect species listed as threatened or endangered, specifically the Hawaiian stilt, and requested concurrence. By letter dated March 12, 2009, the USFWS concurred with MCBH’s determination the proposed project may affect, but would not likely adversely affect the Hawaiian stilt.

ESSENTIAL FISH HABITAT: The proposed work is being evaluated for possible effects to Essential Fish Habitat (EFH) pursuant to Section 305(b) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act of 1996 (MSFCMA) (16 U.S.C. 1855 (b)) and associated federal regulations found at 50 CFR Part 600 Subpart K.  The Honolulu District area of responsibility includes EFH for species managed under Fishery Management Plans. 

By letter dated March 14, 2013, MCBH determined that the proposed project would adversely affect EFH, requested consultation for effects to EFH with NMFS, and detailed in the letter the avoidance and minimization efforts, including coral transplantation, that are proposed to reduce adverse effects. By letter dated April 23, 2013, NMFS responded and concurred with MCBH’s effects determination, as well as offering 5 conservation recommendations for MCBH to consider when implementing the avoidance and minimization plan.

AUTHORITY: This permit application will be reviewed under the following authorities:

(X)  Perform work in or affecting navigable waters of the United States – Section 10 Rivers and Harbors Act 1899 (33 U.S.C. 403).

(X)  Discharge dredged or fill material into waters of the United States – Section 404 Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1344).  The Corps’ public interest review will consider the guidelines set forth under Section 404(b) of the Clean Water Act (40 CFR 230).

( )  Transport dredged material for the purpose of dumping it into ocean waters - Section 103 Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act of 1972 (33 U.S.C. 1413).  The Corps’ public interest review will consider the criteria established under authority of Section 102(a) of the Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act of 1972, as amended (40 CFR Parts 220 to 229), as appropriate.

EVALUATION: 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 benefits, 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, 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.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is soliciting comments from the public; Federal, State, and local agencies and officials; and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the impacts of this activity. Any comments received will be considered by the Corps to determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for the work. 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 activity.

PUBLIC HEARING: Any person may request that a public hearing be held to consider this application.  Requests for public hearings must be in writing, within the comment period specified in this notice, and state clearly and concisely, the reasons and rationale for holding a public hearing.

COMMENT AND REVIEW PERIOD: Conventional mail or e-mail comments on this public notice will be accepted and made part of the record and will be considered in determining whether it would be in the public interest to authorize this proposal. 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 permit applicant’s name and reference number as shown below.  All e-mail comments should be sent to emilee.r.stevens2@usace.army.mil.  Conventional mail comments should be sent U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Honolulu District, Building 230 (Attn: CEPOH-EC-R), Fort Shafter, HI 96858-5440. Both conventional mail and e-mail comments must include the permit applicant’s name and reference number, as shown below, and the commenter’s name, address, and phone number.  All comments whether conventional mail or e-mail must reach this office, no later than the expiration date of this public notice to ensure consideration.  Please include the following name and reference number: MCBH Waterfront Operations Facility Boat Ramp Reconstruction; POH-2013-00138.

Comments on the described work, with the reference number, should reach this office no later than the expiration date of this Public Notice to become part of the record and be considered in the decision.  Please contact Emilee Stevens at (808) 835-4310 if further information is desired concerning this notice.

Supplemental information and project drawings (53 pages) are attached to this Public Notice.


Contact Information

Regulatory Office
Building 252
Fort Shafter, HI  96858-5440
(808) 835-4303

Guam Field Office
Apra Harbor Naval Complex
PSC 455 Box 188
FPO, AP 96540-1088  Guam
(671) 339-2108 

Civil and Public Works Branch

Civil and Public Works Branch

Bldg. 230 Fort Shafter, HI 96858