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COMMISSION ACTIONS MARCH 2009

The following are the agenda items from the Commission's regular meeting held March 24, 2009 at Commission headquarters. The Commission's actions are in bold.

** APPROVAL OF AGENDA.  THE AGENDA WAS APPROVED AS AMENDED 7-0, WITH ASSOCIATE COMMISSIONER CARTER FOX ABSENT FROM THE MEETING AND ASSOCIATE COMMISSION ED TANKARD ARRIVING DURING AGENDA ITEM 2.
[Agenda]

1.  MINUTES of previous meeting.  APPROVED 6-0-1 WITH ASSOCIATE MEMBER KYLE SCHICK ABSTAINING BECAUSE HE WAS ABSENT AT THE FEBRUARY MEETING.
[Audio Item 1]

2.  PERMITS (Projects over $50,000 with no objections and with staff recommendation for approval).  THESE SEVEN S0-CALLED PAGE TWO ITEMS (DETAILED BELOW) WERE APPROVED 7-0-1 WITH ASSOCIATE COMMISSIONER TANKARD ABSTAINING BECAUSE HE ENTERED THE MEETING DURING THE STAFF PRESENTATION.
[Audio Item 2]

3.  CONSENT AGENDA ITEMS.   BLUNT MANAGEMENT LLC. THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED (8-0) ISSUING AN AFTER-THE-FACT PERMIT FOR THE RETENTION OF A 20-FOOT BY 42-FOOT SINGLE STORY ENCLOSURE AS WELL AS A 12.5-FOOT BY 44-FOOT OPEN-PILE DECK TO SERVE THE HAPPY CLAM RESTAURANT IN COLONIAL BEACH. THE COMMISSION CHOSE NOT TO ASSESS TRIPLE PERMIT FEES OR THE STAFF RECOMMENDATION FOR AN APPROPRIATE CIVIL CHARGE. 
[Audio Item 3]

4.  CLOSED SESSION.  THE COMMISSION HELD A BRIEF CLOSED MEETING TO DISCUSS AGENDA ITEMS 17, 18, AND 19, AS WELL AS LEGAL MATTERS RELATED TO THE ONGOING APPEAL IN THE MATTER OF HOLLOWELL V. MRC.
[Audio Item 4]

5.  GWYNN'S ISLAND CONDOMINIUM UNIT OWNER'S ASSOCIATION, #08-0739, requests authorization to remove an existing portion of their pierhead with seven (7) associated wetslips and to extend the existing pier and mooring poles 70 feet channelward and construct a 97-foot long by 5-foot wide pierhead with pilings and finger piers to create 12 slips for a total of 15 slips at their community pier situated along Milford Haven off Callis Wharf Road in Mathews County.  The project is protested by the leaseholders of two nearby parcels of oyster planting ground. Continued from the February 24, 2009, meeting.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY VOTED TO DENY THE APPLICATION AS RECOMMENDED BY STAFF.
[Audio Item 5]

6.  MR. AND MRS. ERNEST S. HARDING JR., #08-0711, request authorization to construct a 4-slip community pier at their property situated along Lower Machodoc Creek in Westmoreland County.  The project is protested by several adjacent and nearby property owners. Continued from the January 27, 2009 meeting.  THE COMMISSION VOTED 5-3 WITH ASSOCIATE COMMISSIONERS BILL LAINE, JOHN MCCONAUGHA AND ED TANKARD VOTING NO TO APPROVE THE REQUEST.  APPROVAL WAS CONDITIONED ON THERE BEING NO VEHICULAR ACCESS TO THE PIER AND THE APPLICANT'S AGREEMENT THAT THE MAXIMUM NUMBER OF SLIPS AUTHORIZED WOULD BE LIMITED TO THE FOUR SLIPS SOUGHT TO SERVE THE LOTS REFERENCED IN THE CURRENT APPLICATION. 
[Audio Item 6]

7.  MOON OF NORFOLK CONVEYANCE.  Commission consideration of the appropriate terms, conditions and just compensation for the conveyance of 108,466 square feet (2.49 acres) of previously filled State-owned subaqueous lands in Norfolk as authorized by Chapter 884, Acts of Assembly 2006, as limited by Chapter 879, Acts of Assembly 2007. Continued from the February 24, 2009 meeting.  THE COMMISSION VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO APPROVE THE CONVEYANCE IN THE MANNER RECOMMENDED BY STAFF AND AS SPECIFIED IN CODE. THE COMMISSION DID, HOWEVER, AGREE TO ADJUST AND REDUCE THE COMPENSATION RATE BY APPROXIMATELY 20% TO REFLECT THE APPARENT OVER ASSESSMENT BY THE CITY OF NORFOLK BASED ON AN INCORRECT ESTIMATE OF THE ACTUAL UPLAND PROPERTY INVOLVED.  THE FINAL COMPENSATION FIGURE WILL BE DETERMINED BY STAFF, WHEN COUNSEL FOR THE GRANTEE PROVIDES THE NEW FIGURES TO BE USED IN THE CALCULATIONS. ALTHOUGH THE PRECISE FEE IS NOT KNOWN, THE AMOUNT IS EXPECTED TO BE SLIGHTLY MORE THAN $79,000 FOR THE CONVEYANCE OF 108,466 SQUARE FEET OF PREVIOUSLY FILLED STATE-OWNED SUBAQUEOUS LANDS.
[Audio Item 7]

8.  FORT NORFOLK LLC CONVEYANCE.  Commission consideration of the appropriate terms, conditions and just compensation for the conveyance of 4,489 square feet (0.103 acres) of previously filled State-owned subaqueous lands in Norfolk as authorized by Chapter 673, Acts of Assembly 2008. Continued from the February 24, 2009 meeting.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED THE CONVEYANCE OF 4,489 SQUARE FEET OF PREVIOUSLY FILLED STATE-OWNED SUBAQUEOUS LANDS FOR A COMPENSATION OF $5,307.70, AS PER THE RECOMMENDATIONS OF STAFF.
[Audio Item 8]

9.  ELIZABETH RIVER PROJECT, #08-2238, requests authorization to dredge 800 cubic yards of PAH-contaminated sediment and create 1.3 acres of intertidal, vegetated wetlands, 3.5 acres of one-dimensional oyster reef habitat and 3.5 acres of clean sand benthic habitat as part of an environmental enhancement project in the Southern Branch of the Elizabeth River at Money Point in Chesapeake. All contaminated sediments removed will be transferred to and disposed of at an upland landfill site in Charles City County.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED THE PROJECT AS RECOMMENDED BY STAFF.
[Audio Item 9]

10. MILTON POINT, LC, #08-2199, request authorization to install three stone breakwaters with beach nourishment and plantings, two of the breakwaters being 160 feet in length and one breakwater being 130 feet long, and to install up to 150 feet of rip rap revetment at the applicant's property situated along the James River at 18485 and 18493 Morgarts Beach Road in Isle of Wight County. Both dunes and beaches, and subaqueous permits are required.  THE COMMISSION VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO APPROVE THIS PROJECT AS RECOMMENDED BY STAFF.
[Audio Item 10]

11.  MR. AND MRS. SHAWN DESMOND, #08-1477, request after-the-fact authorization to retain 150 linear feet of replacement vinyl bulkhead installed four feet channelward of the original deteriorated timber bulkhead adjacent to their property at 1119 Potomac Drive, situated along Aquia Creek in Stafford County.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY VOTED TO APPROVE THE AFTER-THE-FACT REQUEST CONTINGENT ON AGREEMENT BY BOTH THE APPLICANT AND THE CONTRACTOR TO A $600 CIVIL CHARGE EACH IN LIEU OF ANY FURTHER ENFORCEMENT AS PROVIDED BY CODE.
[Audio Item 11]

12.  PUBLIC COMMENTS.  ASSOCIATE COMMISSIONER RICK ROBINS ASKED FOR A PUBLIC HEARING AT THE COMMISSION'S MAY MEETING TO ENACT GROUPER AND TILEFISH REGULATIONS PERTAINING TO VESSEL LIMITS, DATA COLLECTION, AND BYCATCH RESTRICTIONS.  ALSO, ASSOCIATE COMMISSIONER ERNIE BOWDEN ASKED THE COMMISSION TO PERMIT THE FINFISH MANAGEMENT ADVISORY COMMITTEE TO STUDY WHETHER TO ALLOW THE COMMERCIAL HARVEST OF STRIPED BASS IN VIRGINIA COASTAL WATERS IN THE MONTHS OF JANUARY.
[Audio Item 12]

13.  PUBLIC HEARING: Proposed amendments to Regulation 4VAC20-270, "Pertaining to Crabbing" to reinstate the dates of the crabbing season as March 17 through November 30. THE 2009 CRABBING SEASON DATES WERE ESTABLISHED UNANIMOUSLY.
[Audio Item 13]

14.  PUBLIC HEARING: Proposed amendments to Regulation 4VAC20-530, "Pertaining to American Shad" to allow for an American Shad bycatch fishery in 2009.  THE AMERICAN SHAD BYCATCH FISHERY WAS APPROVED UNANIMOUSLY.
[Audio Item 14]

15.  PUBLIC HEARING: Proposed amendments to Regulation 4VAC20-950, "Pertaining to Black Sea Bass" to raise the recreational fishery minimum size limit to 12 inches.  THE INCREASED BLACK SEA BASS MINIMUM SIZE LIMIT WAS APPROVED UNANIMOUSLY.
[Audio Item 15]

16.  PUBLIC HEARING: Proposed regulation to allow a special oyster relaying season in the Rappahannock River in April, 2009 on Russ Rock and Little Carter Rock.  THIS SPECIAL OYSTER RELAYING SEASON WAS APPROVED UNANIMOUSLY.
[Audio Item 16]

17.  PUBLIC HEARING: William Haynie request to license and locate a pound net in Chesapeake Bay near Hughlett Point.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED THIS POUND NET APPLICATION.
[Audio Item 17]

18.  PUBLIC HEARING: Dirk Sanford request to license and locate two pound nets in Chesapeake Bay near the Bay Bridge-Tunnel and Lynnhaven Inlet.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED THE APPLICATION FOR TWO POUND NETS.
[Audio Item 18 & 19]

19.  PUBLIC HEARING: Charles Gregory request to license and locate a pound net in Chesapeake Bay near the Bay Bridge-Tunnel and Lynnhaven Inlet.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED THIS POUND NET APPLICATION.

20.  REQUEST FOR PUBLIC HEARING: To establish 2009 regulations for the commercial harvest of blue crabs.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED A PUBLIC HEARING NEXT MONTH ON 2009 BLUE CRAB REGULATIONS.
[Audio Item 20]

21.  REQUEST FOR PUBLIC HEARING: To establish closing dates of crab sanctuary as May1 through September 15th.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY AGREED TO HOLD A PUBLIC HEARING NEXT MONTH ON A PROPOSAL TO CLOSE EVERY SECTION OF THE BLUE CRAB SANCTUARY FROM MAY 1 TO SEPT. 15.
[Audio Item 21]

22.  INDIVIDUAL APPEALS TO PLACE CERTAIN CRAB POT AND PEELER POT LICENSES ON A WAITING LIST.  THE COMMISSION AGREED TO REACTIVATE 17 CRAB LICENSES THAT HAD BEEN PLACED ON A WAITING LIST, AFTER HEARING APPEALS AND ACCEPTING PROOF OF MEDICAL HARDSHIP OR PAPERWORK ERRORS. EIGHT APPEALS WERE DENIED.
[Audio Item 22]

23.  INDIVIDUAL CASES OF VIOLATION OF THE STRIPED BASS QUOTA RULES.  THE COMMISSION ISSUED WARNING LETTERS TO, OR REDUCED 2009 INDIVIDUAL STRIPED BASS QUOTAS FOR, 29 WATERMEN WHO EXCEEDED THEIR 2008 QUOTAS.
[Audio Item 23]

24.  VIRGINIA SEAFOOD COUNCIL: Request to modify their 2009/2010 field trials with the Asian oyster. THE VIRGINIA SEAFOOD COUNCIL WITHDREW THEIR APPLICATION TO CONTINUE FIELD TRIALS THIS YEAR ON THE ASIAN OYSTER.
[Audio Item 24]

25.  REPEAT OFFENDERS.  THE COMMISSION PLACED THE LICENSES OF TWO WATERMEN ON PROBATION FOR ONE YEAR FOR SECOND OFFENSES IN THE PAST TWELVE MONTHS OF OYSTER OR CRAB CONSERVATION REGULATIONS.
[Audio Item 25]

THE FOLLOWING SO-CALLED PAGE TWO ITEMS WERE APPROVED UNANIMOUSLY:

2A.  PERDUE GRAIN AND OILSEED, LLC, 09-0176, requests authorization to install two additional breasting dolphins and construct a new 19-foot by 43-foot open-pile dock, timber catwalk, conveyor tower and belt system and a pedestrian footbridge to facilitate repairs/improvements to their existing grain-loading facility located on Hoskins Creek in the Town of Tappahannock. Recommend a royalty in the amount of $5,872.00 for the encroachment of the project over 2,936 square feet of State-owned subaqueous land at a rate of $2.00 per square foot.

2B.  VIRGINIA INSTITUTE OF MARINE SCIENCE, #09-0246, requests authorization to deploy a 5-foot wide by 8-foot long scientific buoy designed to measure water quality located at 37 43' 12.72" North Latitude and 76 34' 0.78" West Longitude, approximately 7,500 feet northwest of the mouth of Greenvale Creek in Lancaster County. The buoy is proposed to be located on Public Ground Number 1 in Lancaster County. Staff recommends the buoy be marked in accordance with U.S. Coast Guard requirements.

2C.  VIRGINIA INSTITUTE OF MARINE SCIENCE, #09-0164, requests authorization to deploy an underwater camera system between April 1 and October 31, 2009. The camera is proposed to be located on the substrate with the frame extending approximately three feet above the substrate. The camera structure is proposed to be marked by a surface buoy located at 37 41' 24.792" North Latitude and 76 33' 48.636" West Longitude in approximately 25 feet of water and approximately 7200 feet channelward of the Middlesex County shoreline between Weeks and LaGrange Creeks. The buoy is proposed to be located on Additional Public Ground.  Staff recommends the buoy be marked in accordance with U.S. Coast Guard requirements.

2D.  COLONNA'S SHIPYARD, #07-1291, requests authorization to dredge 65,300 cubic yards of State-owned subaqueous material to create maximum controlling depths of -35 feet at mean low water within an 86-foot wide by 400-foot basin channelward of Dry Dock 2, and -25 feet at mean low water within a 100-foot wide by approximately 1,100-foot long basin extending south into Pescara Creek, adjacent to their facility situated along the Eastern Branch of the Elizabeth River at 400 East Indian River Road in the City of Norfolk. The proposed project also includes four (4) 13-pile mooring dolphins installed along the western toe of the proposed dredge cut in Pescara Creek and up to 20,000 cubic yards of future dredging to maintain the proposed depths. Staff recommends inclusion of our standard dredging conditions and the assessment of a royalty in the amount of $29,385.00 for the dredging of 65,300 cubic yards of State-owned subaqueous material at a rate of $0.45 a cubic yard.

2E.  VULCAN CONSTRUCTION MATERIALS, INC., #07-0979, requests a modification to a previously authorized permit to now install one (1) 8-foot diameter steel fender with three (3) battered piles, approximately 62 feet upstream of an existing commercial pier at their Westminster Sales Yard situated along the Eastern Branch of the Elizabeth River in the City of Norfolk. Recommend the assessment of a royalty in the amount of $700.00 for the encroachment of the fender and battered piles' encroachment over 350 square feet of State-owned subaqueous land at a rate of $2.00 per square.

2F.  DEEP CREEK LANDING MARINA, #09-0202, requests authorization to remove their storm damaged pier and roof and replace it with a 222-foot long by 8-foot wide and 21-foot 6-inch long by 4-foot wide main walkway, a 10-foot by 35-foot landing, a 25-foot by 35-foot platform, nine 4-foot by 15-foot finger piers, two 4-foot by 35-foot finger piers, and one 3-foot by 42-foot 6-inch finger pier adjacent to their property situated along Deep Creek in Newport News. All replacement piers will be floating and the previously existing roof will not be replaced. Staff recommends a royalty in the amount of $1,391.00 for the 1,391 square foot difference in encroachment between the previously existing pier and the proposed replacement pier structures at a rate of $1.00 per square foot.

2G.  LINWOOD HANBURY, ET AL, #07-1546,
requests authorization to modify a previously issued permit to dredge an additional 75 cubic yards of State-owned subaqueous bottomland within an unnamed cove of Bennett Creek, a tributary to the Nansemond River, in the City of Suffolk, adjacent to numerous properties within the Bennetts Creek Harbor subdivision along Old Wharf Road. Recommend an additional royalty of $33.75 for the additional dredging of 75 cubic yards at a rate of $0.45 per cubic yard.


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