[Federal Register Volume 73, Number 86 (Friday, May 2, 2008)]
[Notices]
[Pages 24258-24259]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E8-9488]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE

Department of the Army; Corps of Engineers


Intent To Prepare a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement/
Environmental Impact Report (SEIS/EIR) for the Seven Oaks Dam To 
Implement Measures To Sustain Federally-Listed Species as Identified in 
the 2002 Biological Opinion Within the Woolly Star Preserve Area in San 
Bernardino County, CA

AGENCY: Department of the Army, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, DOD.

ACTION: Notice of Intent.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The purpose of the study is to develop implementation plans to 
sustain federally-listed species within the Woolly Star Preserve Area, 
including the Slender-horned spineflower, San Bernardino Kangaroo Rat, 
and Santa Ana Woolly Star. As a requirement of the Biological Opinion 
(2002), for construction and operation of Seven Oaks Dam (SOD), the 
Corps prepared a Multi-Species Habitat Management Plan (MSHMP) to 
identify potential management measures and implementation strategies. 
Recommendations in the Draft MSHMP have been developed in collaboration 
with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, California Department of Fish 
and Game, and other stakeholders. The Draft MSHMP identifies non-
structural and structural measures. Non-structural measures could 
include, but are not limited to, herbicide treatment for non-native 
invasive grass control and providing water to the mitigation area 
through pipelines or trucks to hydraulically spread sand for substrate 
enhancement. Structural measures could include, but not limited to, 
controlled releases from SOD and dikes (permanent and/or temporary) 
used to direct hydraulic spreading of sand for substrate enhancement. 
The SEIS/EIR will examine the details of the measures identified above 
and other feasible alternatives based on hydrological, geotechnical, 
environmental, and technical factors. Management activities would be 
conducted within the Woolly Star Preserve Area and other adjacent 
lands.

DATES: Submit comments to Ms. Megan Wong at the address listed below, 
on or before June 15, 2008.

ADDRESSES: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Los Angeles District, CESPL-
PD-RN, c/o Megan Wong, P.O. Box 532711, Los Angeles, CA 90053-2325.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Megan Wong, Project Environmental 
Coordinator, at (213) 452-3859 or e-mail at 
Megan.T.Wong@usace.army.mil.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

1. Authorization

    The Santa Ana Mainstem flood control project was authorized by 
section 401(a) of the Water Resources Development Act of 1986 (100 
Stat. 4113) and modified by section 104 of the Energy and Water 
Development Appropriations Act, 1988 (101 Stat. 1329-11), section 
102(e) of the Water Resources Development Act of 1990 (104 Stat. 4611), 
and section 311 of the Water Resources Development Act of 1996 (110 
Stat. 3713).

2. Background

    Seven Oaks Dam is one component of the Santa Ana River Mainstem 
Project (SARP), which provides flood risk management along the Santa 
Ana River. The SARP extends approximately 75 miles from the upper Santa 
Ana River Canyon in the San Bernardino Mountains downstream to its 
confluence with the Pacific Ocean at Newport Beach, California. Seven 
Oaks Dam was constructed between 1994 and 1999, is a 550-foot high 
earthen dam with a gross retention capacity of 145,600 acre-feet at the 
spillway crest elevation (USACE 2000a). Environmental impacts and 
mitigation associated with construction of the SARP were addressed in 
the 1988 Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) associated 
with the Phase II General Design Memorandum (GDM) on the Santa Ana 
River Mainstem Including Santiago Creek, California (USACE 1988a). 
Because federally-listed endangered species may be present and critical 
habitat occurs in the action area of this major construction project, 
the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) prepared biological 
assessments (BAs) and engaged in informal and formal consultation with 
the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) pursuant to section 7(a)(2) 
of the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
    The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) issued biological 
opinions (BOs) in 1989 and 2002 and it was determined by the USFWS that 
the SARP would not jeopardize the continued existence of the Santa Ana 
woolly star, slender-horned spineflower, San Bernardino kangaroo rat, 
and least bell's vireo with implementation of proposed compensatory 
mitigation (including land acquisition, preservation, and/or 
enhancement) and additional conservation measures (USFWS 1989, 2002). 
The 1989 BO addresses compensation, reasonable and

[[Page 24259]]

prudent measures, and conservation recommendations specific to woolly 
star and least bell's vireo. The 2002 BO addresses additional 
conservation measures for multi-species habitat management to sustain 
SBKR, spineflower, and woolly star on WSPA lands.

3. Scoping Process

    a. A scoping meeting is scheduled on May 15, 2008, 6:30 p.m., at 
the San Bernardino County Flood Control District, 825 E. Third Street, 
San Bernardino, CA 92415. The Public Scoping meeting will be announced 
by means of a letter, public announcements and news releases. Potential 
impacts and benefits associated with the various alternatives will be 
evaluated in the SEIS/EIR. Resource categories that will be analyzed 
are: Physical environment, geology, biological resources, air quality, 
water quality, recreational usage, aesthetics, cultural resources, 
transportation, noise, hazardous waste, socioeconomics and safety.
    b. Participation of affected Federal, State and local resource 
agencies, and concerned interest groups/individuals is encouraged in 
the scoping process. Public participation will be especially important 
in defining the scope of analysis in the Supplemental EIS/EIR, 
identifying significant environmental issues and impact that require 
analysis in the Supplemental EIS/EIR and providing useful information 
such as published and unpublished data, personal knowledge of relevant 
issues and recommending alternatives to be considered.
    c. Those interested in providing information or data relevant to 
the environmental or social impacts that should be included or 
considered in the environmental analysis can furnish this information 
by writing to the points of contact indicated above or by attending the 
public scoping meeting. A mailing list will also be established so 
pertinent data may be distributed to interested parties.

    Dated: April 22, 2008.
Thomas H. Magness,
Colonel, U.S. Army, District Commander.
 [FR Doc. E8-9488 Filed 5-1-08; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3710-KF-P