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COMMISSION ACTIONS APRIL 2010

The following are the agenda items from the Commission's regular meeting held April 27, 2010 at Commission headquarters.  The Commission's actions are in bold.

*** APPROVAL OF AGENDA.  THE AGENDA WAS APPROVED UNANIMOUSLY, 9-0, WITH THE ENTIRE COMMISSION PRESENT FOR THE MEETING.
[Agenda]

1.  MINUTES of previous meeting.  THE MINUTES OF THE MARCH MEETING WERE APPROVED AS CIRCULATED 8-0-1, WITH ASSOCIATE COMMISSION FOX ABSTAINING.   [Audio Item 1]

2.  PERMITS (Projects over $50,000 with no objections and with staff recommendation for approval). THESE SO-CALLED PAGE TWO ITEMS, DELINEATED BELOW IN DETAIL, WERE UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED, IN KEEPING WITH THE RECOMMENDATIONS OF STAFF.
[Audio Item 2]
 

3.  CONSENT AGENDA ITEMS.   THESE TWO SO-CALLED PAGE THREE ITEMS DELINEATED BELOW (CONSENT AGREEMENTS FOR MIKE DEGEN AND THE CITY OF COLONIAL HEIGHTS), WERE APPROVED UNANIMOUSLY, IN KEEPING WITH THE TERMS, CONDITIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS OF STAFF.  [Audio Item 3] 

4.  CLOSED MEETING FOR CONSULTATION WITH, OR BRIEFING BY COUNSEL.  THE COMMISSION WENT INTO CLOSED MEETING TO DISCUSS THE RECENT DECISION BY THE COURT OF APPEALS IN THE CASE OF ROBERT HOLLOWELL V. MARINE RESOURCES COMMISSION REGARDING THE COMMISSION'S BAN ON WINTER CRAB DREDGING. 
[Audio Item 4] 

5.  L. SCOTT TRAINUM, #09-0806, requests authorization to construct a riprap, sill and breakwater shoreline stabilization project at property situated at the confluence of Cabin Creek and the Poquoson River in York County.  The project is protested by multiple property owners.  THE COMMISSION INITIALLY DENIED A REQUEST FOR CONTINUANCE MADE BY MR. SCOTT REICHLE ON BEHALF OF THE PROTESTANTS.  THE COMMISSION ULTIMATELY APPROVED THE PROJECT AS PROPOSED BY A VOTE OF 8-1, IN KEEPING WITH THE RECOMMENDATION OF STAFF.  ASSOCIATE COMMISSIONER LAINE VOTED NO.
[Audio Item 5] 

6.  CITY OF NORFOLK, #06-2365, requests a modification to their previously authorized permit to now allow the dredging of up to 2,700 cubic yards of sand from three borrow areas in the Chesapeake Bay along the Willoughby Spit shoreline for the purpose of the restoration of 6,000 linear feet of dune between 14th and 8th View Streets in the City of Norfolk.  The project is protested by a public interest organization and nearby property owner.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED) THE PROJECT, IN KEEPING WITH THE RECOMMENDATIONS OF STAFF. 
[Audio Item 6] 

7.  BEN WEAVER, #09-0244, requests authorization to install seven (7) pre-cast, concrete, units creating a 9-foot wide by 57-foot long breakwater positioned 105 feet channelward of an existing revetment adjacent to the western shore of the Chesapeake Bay in Northumberland County.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY DENIED THE PROJECT, IN KEEPING WITH THE RECOMMENDATIONS OF STAFF.
[Audio Item 7- 9] 

8.  BETTY WALKER, #09-0245, requests authorization to install seven (7) pre-cast, concrete, units creating a 9-foot wide and 57-foot long breakwater aligned 105 feet channelward of an existing bulkhead adjacent to the western shore of the Chesapeake Bay in Northumberland County.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY DENIED THE PROJECT, IN KEEPING WITH THE RECOMMENDATIONS OF STAFF. 

9.  ARNOLD FARBER, #09-0243, requests authorization to install seven (7) pre-cast, concrete, units creating a 9-foot wide and 57-foot long breakwater aligned 105 feet channelward of an existing revetment adjacent to the western shore of the Chesapeake Bay in Northumberland County.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY DENIED THE PROJECT, IN KEEPING WITH THE RECOMMENDATIONS OF STAFF.  

10. BOB BOUVIER, #09-0800, requests authorization to install three (3) 57-foot long by 9-foot wide pre-cast, concrete, breakwaters aligned approximately 100 feet channelward of the existing graded bank and to place 600 cubic yards of sandy material landward of the breakwaters as beach nourishment adjacent to his property situated along the Potomac River at 8859 Sandy Beach Lane in King George County.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY TABLED INDEFINITELY CONSIDERATION OF THIS PROJECT, AT THE REQUEST OF THE APPLICANT. 
[Audio Item 10] 

11.  EASTWIND, LLC, #09-1455, requests authorization to construct a riprap groin extending 60 feet channelward of mean high water, a 6 foot by 130 foot timber open pile bridge across Silver Creek and to construct a 10 foot by 11 foot screened gazebo incorporated into the roof of an existing boathouse adjacent to their property situated along the North River at 9812 Eastwind Road in Gloucester County.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED THE RIPRAP GROIN AND BRIDGE COMPONENTS OF THIS PROJECT AND DENIED THE GAZEBO, IN KEEPING WITH THE RECOMMENDATIONS OF STAFF. 
[Audio Item 11] 

12.  MARSHALL SEAFOOD, #2009-025, requests to lease approximately 70 acres of oyster planting ground within Timberneck Creek, in Gloucester County.  The application is protested by a nearby property owner and leaseholder, and by Timberneck, LLC, also a property owner along the creek.  Deferred at the February meeting until the April meeting by request of the applicant's attorney.  THE COMMISSION TABLED THIS MATTER UNTIL THE MAY 25, 2010 MEETING.
 [Audio Item 12] 

13.  PUBLIC COMMENTS:  THE COMMISSION RECEIVED NO PUBLIC COMMENT.
[Audio Item 13] 

14.  BLUE CRAB:  Presentation of the results of the 2009/2010 Winter Dredge Survey. Request for public hearing to establish the 2010 regulations for commercial and recreational crabbing. THE COMMISSION VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO ADVERTISE FOR A FINAL VOTE IN MAY THE CONTINUATION OF BLUE CRAB REGULATIONS CURRENTLY IN PLACE, AS THE COMMISSION'S STOCK-REBUILDING PROGRAM ENTERS THE THIRD YEAR.  THE COMMISSION ALSO SIGNALED ITS WILLINGNESS TO INDEFINITELY EXTEND THE MORATORIUM THAT HAS BEEN IN PLACE SINCE 1999 ON THE ISSUANCE OF NEW COMMERCIAL CRAB PERMITS.
THE COMMISSION REBUFFED REQUESTS FROM SOME COMMERCIAL CRABBERS TO OPEN LARGE SECTIONS OF THE CRAB SANCTUARY, SOUGHT IN LIGHT OF NEW SCIENTIFIC DATA THAT SHOWS A SIGNIFICANT IMPROVEMENT IN CRAB ABUNDANCE BAYWIDE, BUT SIGNALED WILLINGNESS TO RELAX THE EXISTING BLACK SPONGE POSSESSION RULE TO ALLOW POSSESSION OF THOSE CRABS AS OF JULY 1, INSTEAD OF JULY 16. THE CRAB INDUSTRY REQUESTED THE POSSESSION RULE TO BE EFFECTIVE AS OF JUNE 1.

[Audio Item 14] 

15.  PUBLIC HEARING:  Concerning leader mesh requirements for pound nets. Chapter 4VAC20-20-10 et seq. "Pertaining to the Licensing of Fixed Fishing Devices".  THE COMMISSION VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO REQUIRE MODIFIED LEADERS BE USED AN EXTRA 16 DAYS IN POUND NET REGULATED AREA 1, UNTIL JULY 31.  [Audio Item 15] 

16.  PUBLIC HEARING: Consideration of allowing multiple permittees on board a vessel, under a maximum gill net length requirement. Chapter 4VAC20-1190-10 et seq., "Pertaining to Gill Net Control Date, Limited Entry and Transfers".  THE COMMISSION VOTED 9-0 TO DENY A REQUEST TO ALLOW MULTIPLE PERMITEES ON BOARD A VESSEL TO FISH MULTIPLE GILL NETS UP TO A MAXIMUM OF 1,200 FEET IN LENGTH. THE VIRGINIA MARINE POLICE SAID SUCH A REGULATION WOULD BE UNENFORCEABLE.
[Audio Item 16] 

17.  PUBLIC HEARING:  Consideration of prohibiting the use of agents and transfers in the limited spiny dogfish fishery. A permittee transfer exception process will also be considered. Chapters 4VAC20-490-10 et seq. "Pertaining to Sharks".  THE COMMISSION VOTED 9-0 TO PROHIBIT THE USE OF AGENTS IN THE LIMITED SPINY DOGFISH FISHERY, BUT ALLOWING PERMIT TRANSFERS IN THE EVENT OF MEDICAL HARDSHIP OR MILITARY SERVICE.
[Audio Item 17] 

18.  PUBLIC HEARING:  Concerning an industry proposal to extend the clam patent tong season in the Newport News Shellfish Management Area through June 30, 2010. Chapter 4VAC20-560-10 et seq. "Pertaining to Shellfish Management Areas".  THE COMMISSION VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO ACCEPT STAFF RECOMMENDATION TO EXTEND THIS PATENT TONG SEASON UNTIL JUNE 30, 2010.
[Audio Item 18] 

19.  CONTINUED DISCUSSION:  Final decision pertaining to public health and warm water shellfish harvest restrictions, rescinding portions of 4 VAC 20-720-10, et seq. and adoption of Regulation 4 VAC 20-1230, et seq., "Pertaining to Restrictions on Shellfish Harvest".  THE COMMISSION VOTED 8-1 TO APPROVE NEW WARM WATER OYSTER HARVEST HANDLING RESTRICTIONS, A CONSUMER PROTECTION MEASURE PROMOTED BY THE VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH.  COMMISSIONER BOWMAN VOTED NO BECAUSE THE NEW REGULATIONS ALLOWED ICE TO BE USED AS A REFRIGERATION METHOD ONLY IN PARTS OF THE STATE, INSTEAD OF STATEWIDE.
[Audio Item 19a] [Audio Item 19b] 

20.  REVOCATION HEARINGS:  Cases concerning revocation of permits and licenses, under the authority of Section 28.2-232 of the Code of Virginia and Chapter 4 VAC 20-252-10 et seq., "Pertaining to the Taking of Striped Bass".  THE COMMISSION VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO ACCEPT STAFF RECOMMENDATION AND TO REVOKE FOR TWO YEARS ALL COMMERCIAL FISHING LICENSES AND PERMITS ISSUED TO FOUR VIRGINIA WATERMEN.  THE WATERMEN - JERRY DECATUR SR., JERRY DECATUR JR., DENNIS DENT, AND SCOTT DENT - WERE ARRESTED AND PLEADED GUILTY IN FEDERAL COURT FOR THEIR ROLES IN A LARGE-SCALED STRIPED BASS POACHING RING.  THE TWO-YEAR REVOCATIONS WERE THE MAXIMUM PERMITTED UNDER VIRGINIA LAW.
[Audio Item 20] 

21.  YORK RIVER SHELLFISH RESTORATION:  Consideration of changes to the NOAA funded oyster restoration program for the York River.  THE COMMISSION VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO APPROVE A REVISED OYSTER BAR REHABILITATION PROJECT ON PUBLIC OYSTER GROUNDS IN THE YORK RIVER.
[Audio Item 21] 

THESE SO-CALLED PAGE TWO ITEMS WERE APPROVED UNANIMOUSLY:

2A.  VIRGINIA INSTITUTE OF MARINE SCIENCE, #10-0319, requests authorization to construct eight (8) riprap breakwaters totaling 990 linear feet, a 116 foot long riprap jetty extension, a 105 foot long riprap spur with 60 linear feet of flank protection, 95 linear feet of riprap revetment and to place 10,000 cubic yards of sandy material landward of the structures, as beach nourishment, along their shoreline situated along the York River on both sides of Gloucester Point in Gloucester County.

2B.  STAFFORD COUNTY, #06-2815, requests authorization to modify an existing permit to construct an open piled supported footbridge over Austin Run instead of a clear span bridge as proposed.  The new bridge will be shifted to the east by 300 feet and will be 8 feet wide, crossing over approximately 33 linear feet of Austin Run, associated with the Government Island Historical Trail Improvement Project in Stafford County.

2C.  PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, #10-0174, requests authorization to impact 117 linear feet of Cow's Branch by installing four (4) additional box culverts beneath Route 1, associated with the Route 1 widening project in Prince William County.

2D.  LYNCHBURG DEPARTMENT OF UTILITIES, #10-0079, requests authorization to install approximately 5,950 linear feet of riprap streambank stabilization along selected portions of the southwest bank of the James River between Pigeon Creek and the terminus of Dearing Street in the City of Lynchburg. 

2E.  DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY #10-0273, requests authorization to install approximately 136 linear feet of steel sheet-pile bulkhead extending 2.0 to 4.4 feet channelward of an existing, deteriorated bulkhead; and to remove a deteriorated wharf and replace it within the same approximate footprint with a new open-pile wharf structure composed of concrete deck supported on concrete piles, at Berth 15 at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard situated along the Southern Branch of the Elizabeth River in the City of Portsmouth.

2F.  CITY OF PORTSMOUTH, #10-0325, requests authorization to install triple 5-foot wide by 4-foot high by 151-foot long box culverts, with wingwalls and a riprap apron at the upstream inlet, to replace a failing open-bottom metal arch culvert which crosses beneath a parking lot off Portsmouth Boulevard in the City of Portsmouth.  The culvert conveys upland drainage and tidal flow from Baines Creek.

2G.  THE LIVING RIVER RESTORATION TRUST, #10-0278, requests authorization to dredge a maximum of 20,000 cubic yards of PAH contaminated sediment from the Southern Branch of the Elizabeth River adjacent to the Hess Corporation property at Money Point in Chesapeake.  The material will be removed mechanically with a sealed dredge bucket, within a turbidity curtain and oil boom, and transported via sealed barges to an approved offload site for upland disposal.  The entire 3.6 acres of subaqueous area will be covered with up to 24 inches of clean sand material after the dredging as part of an ongoing sediment remediation and habitat restoration project.  Recommend approval with our standard dredging conditions and the assessment of a royalty in the amount of $4,000.00 for the dredging of State owned subaqueous bottom at the minimum allowable rate of $0.20 per cubic yard.

2H.  NORTHROP GRUMMAN SHIPBUILDING, INC, #10-0519, requests authorization to install additional horizontal timbers, vertical timber spacers, and connectors supported by additional pilings at four locations on the south side of Pier 6 to allow sufficient berthing space for submarines adjacent to their property situated along the James River in Newport News.

2I.  LINDERA, LLC, #09-1591, requests authorization to restore approximately 1,314 linear feet of Bolling Branch and an unnamed tributary through the installation of cross vanes, J hooks, and riffles; and install a 16 foot by 34 foot timber bridge a minimum of three (3) feet above ordinary high water over Bolling Branch as part of the Bolling Branch Mitigation Bank in Fauquier County.  Staff recommends a royalty in the amount of $544.00 for the encroachment over 544 square feet of State owned submerged land at a rate of $1.00 per square foot.

2J.  SIMS METAL MANAGEMENT, #10-0329, requests authorization to maintenance dredge by clamshell method approximately 45,000 cubic yards of bottom material, and an additional 10,000 cubic yards on an annual basis, to restore/maintain depths within their existing mooring basin of -15-feet MLW including a one-foot overdredge tolerance at their commercial property situated along the James River in the City of Richmond.  Recommend approval with our standard dredge conditions and an instream work time-of-year restriction of February 15 through June 30 to protect anadromous fishes.

THESE SO-CALLED PAGE THREE ITEMS WERE APPROVED UNANIMOUSLY:


3A.  MIKE DEGEN, # 09-1613, requests after-the-fact authorization to retain four (4) stone groins impacting 72 square feet of subaqueous bottom adjacent to his property situated along Potomac Creek in Stafford County.  The applicant has agreed to the payment of $600.00 Civil Charge and $75.00 triple permit fee in lieu of any further enforcement action.

3B.  CITY OF COLONIAL HEIGHTS, #07-2190, requests after the fact authorization to retain a public use pier that was constructed larger than the previously permitted dimensions.  The applicant has agreed to pay triple permit fees and a civil charge of $1,200.00.


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