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Obtaining Permission to Use USACE Disposal Areas

 

Request to Use Corps

Dredged Material Placement Facilities

 

Effective February 3, 2017, the Corps of Engineers established implementation guidance for placement of dredged or excavated material in federal navigation project Dredged Material Placement Facilities (DMPFs) by non-federal interests and others pursuant to Section 217(b) of the Water Resource Development Act of 1996 and Section 401(c) of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (the "Clean Water Act"). The purpose of the guidance was to address the authorities, required findings, and procedures for permitting placement of dredged or excavated material in federal navigation project DMPFs by non-federal interests and other eligible entities. Final approval for usage of a DMPF is no longer made by the local Corps District Office, but is now made by the Corps Division Office in Atlanta, once all required documentation and submittals are received. The Division also determines all fees to be charged, which will include cubic yardage costs and administrative fees.

 

What is Section 217(b) and Section 401(c)?

 

Section 217(b) of the Water Resource Development Act of 1996, Public Law 104-303, as amended (33 U.S.C. § 2326a(b)), authorizes the Secretary of the Army to permit a non-federal interest to use any DMPF under the jurisdiction of, or managed by, the Secretary if the Secretary determines that such use will not reduce the availability of the facility for project purposes. Section 221 of the Flood Control Act of 1970, Public Law 91-611, as amended (42 U.S.C. 1962d-5(b)), defines "non-federal interest" to mean a legally constituted public body (including a federally recognized Indian tribe) or a nonprofit entity with the consent of the affected local government, that has full authority and capability to perform the terms of its agreement and to pay damages, if necessary, in the event of failure to perform.

Section 401 (c) of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (the "Clean Water Act"), Public Law 92-500, as amended (33 U.S.C. § 1341 (c)), authorizes the Secretary of the Army, acting through the Chief of Engineers, to permit the use of a DMPF under the Secretary's jurisdiction by federal licensees or permittees, if it is deemed to be in the public interest. This authority applies to federal licensees or permittees, who do not qualify as non-federal interests.

 

DMPF Definition:

 

For purposes of the guidance, the term "DMPF" means a federal dredged material placement facility and any improvements on lands or submerged lands that enable the placement of dredged or excavated material as a result of non-federal work associated with the construction, operation, or maintenance of federal navigation projects for harbors, inland harbors, or inland waterways. Such improvements may include, but are not necessarily limited to, retaining dikes, waste weirs, bulkheads, embankments, monitoring features, stilling basins, or de-watering pumps or pipes. The term also includes modifications to a dredged or excavated material placement facility to increase capacity beyond that created by regular recurring operation and maintenance activities.

  Sections 217(b) and 401 (c) apply only to DMPFs that are constructed and maintained by the Corps and are located on:

 

  1. Lands owned in fee by either the United States or the non-federal sponsor of a federal navigation project;
  2. Lands over which the United States or the non-federal sponsor of a federal navigation project holds an easement, lease or right of way; or
  3. Submerged lands within the navigation servitude of the United States
General Qualification Requirements:

 

 In order to quality for consideration, a request to use a DMPF must meet the following minimum requirements:

   

  1. Sufficient placement area capacity must be available to accommodate the proposed non-federal dredged material without reducing the availability of the facility for federal project purposes. Excess placement capacity must exist in the requested DMPF, either because the DMPF was designed with a capacity in excess of the capacity required to meet estimated dredged material placement requirements for the associated federal navigation project over the life of the DMPF, or because estimated dredged material placement requirements for the associated federal navigation project do not exceed actual, demonstrated dredged material placement capacity required for the federal navigation project. The excess capacity must be sufficient to accommodate the estimated volume of non-federal dredged material proposed for placement in the DMPF; and the proposed placement of non-federal dredged material in the DMPF cannot interfere with scheduled federal actions associated with the DMPF (e.g., federal dredged material placement or DMPF dike raises).
  2. The proposed placement of non-federal dredged material must be for navigation purposes directly linked to use of the federal navigation project associated with the DMPF.
  3. The proposed placement of non-federal dredged material must be environmentally acceptable. The dredged material must meet applicable state and federal requirements for dredged material placement and approved Corps sediment testing protocols.
  4. The requesting entity must provide documentation of a right of access for the purpose of dredged or excavated material placement from all parties that hold a real property interest in the DMPF, to include the underlying fee owner of DMPFs that are located on submerged lands within the navigation servitude of the United States.      

Application Procedures:

 

Non-federal interests or other eligible entities seeking to place dredged material in a DMPF within North Carolina must submit requests in writing to the Corps Wilmington District Office at least 9 to 12 months in advance of any planned dredging project is expected to begin.

To initiate a request, an applicant must submit the following general information:

  1. the purpose and need of proposed non-federal dredging activity,
  2. map of the location where dredged material will be removed (an image from Google Earth, Google maps, or another mapping program is sufficient),
  3. map of the specific DMPF where you are interested in placing the dredged material,
  4. estimated volume of dredged material, and
  5. description of the project and dredging method to be used

 

   

To assist applicants with determining the specific Corps placement or disposal area location and associated site number where you are interested in depositing dredged materials, please use the Google Earth Navigation Basemap” file, which can be downloaded from the following Cops webpage:

http://www.saw.usace.army.mil/Missions/Navigation/Google-Earth-Info/

 

The applicant requests can be emailed to the Wilmington District Office at SAWWEB-WILLandUse@usace.army.mil  or sent via mail to:      

US Army Corps of Engineers
Attn: Land Use Coordinator (OP-NW)
69 Darlington Ave
Wilmington, NC 28403

 

Within 21 days of receipt, the District will review the submitted materials and provide a preliminary determination whether sufficient capacity, beyond the life of the federal project, exists within the requested DMPF. Since most federal projects are perpetual, and therefore do not expire, few DMPFs will contain excess placement capacity.

If a DMPF is identified by the District to potentially contain excess capacity, then the applicant will be asked to submit additional information to include, but not limited to: 

  1. characterization of the dredged material in accordance with applicable Corps sediment testing guidance
  2. method for accomplishing the dredged material placement in the DMPF,
  3. a proposed schedule,
  4. documentation of no objection from the non-federal sponsor of the federal navigation project,
  5. brief history of the Section 10/404 permit approvals along with approval/verification dates and Regulatory Program project ID numbers,
  6. documentation demonstrating a right of access for the purpose of dredged or excavated material placement from all parties that hold a real property interest in the DMPF.
  7. a pre-work survey of the disposal area  to be used for placement.
  8. W-9 form that gives you Tax ID number.  This form can be downloaded from the IRS website.     

Applicants should NOT begin compiling any of the additional information above until directed by the District, after the 21 day preliminary determination. Applications should be submitted at least 9 to 12 months in advance of any planned dredging project. All documentation must be reviewed and approved by the Corps Division Office in Atlanta, all required fees will not be known until after Division approval is received.      

District Points of Contact:

For any questions regarding the submittal process or to discuss your dredging and/or disposal needs, please contact a member of the USACE Wilmington District office.

 

 Contact Information

 Land Use Coordinator

(910) 251-4196
 Chief of Geospatial Services   (910) 251-4067
 Chief of Navigation (910) 251-4822
 

Questions can also be emailed to:  SAWWEB-WILLandUse@usace.army.mil 

 

A copy of the implementation guidance can be viewed and/or downloaded from the link below.  https://cdm16021.contentdm.oclc.org/digital/collection/p16021coll11/id/1349