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Waterfront Advisory Committee Minutes 03/07/02



A meeting of the Waterfront Advisory Committee of the Village of Croton-on-Hudson, New York was held on Thursday, March 7, 2002 in the Municipal Building.

                  MEMBERS PRESENT:              Chairperson Fran Allen
                                                Charles Kane
                                                Sally Odland
Leo Wiegman
                            ABSENT:             Ann Gallelli

1.  Call to Order:

The meeting was called to order at 7:15 P.M. by Chairperson Fran Allen.
Chairperson Allen explained to the WAC members the background for the New York State Department of State’s present request for comments on the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ (ACOE’s) Nationwide Permits.  It is the ACOE’s responsibility to periodically upgrade and modify its Nationwide Permits.  As an interested entity (agency) of the New York State Coastal Zone Management Program, the Village was asked in May 2000 to provide comments on the re-issuance of the permits.  At that time, the WAC reviewed the ACOE’s Nationwide Permits and Conditions for consistency with the Village’s Local Waterfront Revitalization Program (LWRP).  The WAC’s comments were provided to the Village Manager who then forwarded them to the NYS Department of State’s Division of Coastal Resources. Chairperson Allen stated that the ACOE has reviewed the comments made by the WAC and by various other local agencies throughout the United States and has upgraded and/or changed its permits accordingly. The ACOE is now at the point of re-issuance.

Chairperson Allen stated that the WAC’s comments have to be sent to Steven Resler of the NYS Department of State very soon.   

Chairperson Allen stated that, in order to expedite the process, she has prepared a draft memorandum for the WAC to review.  She went over the WAC’s comments made in May 2000.

Chairperson Allen stated that the first section of the ACOE document submitted for the Committee’s review tonight contains a discussion/summary of all of the public comments received.   Chairperson Allen noted that the Village’s comments were, indeed, included in the discussion.

Chairperson Allen stated that the index for the Nationwide Permits and Conditions can be found on page 2077 of the document being reviewed tonight (Federal Register/Vol 67, No. 10/Notices). The discussion/summary of public comments precedes this index.  Chairperson Allen stated that she found this discussion of the public comments to be most interesting because the ACOE gives the rationale behind the statements made.  

Chairperson Allen noted to the others that Part A on page 2077 of the Federal Register notice is the index and Part B, beginning on page 2078, is (is comprised of) the actual Nationwide Permits.

Chairperson Allen stated that she looked through the ACOE permits to make sure that the ACOE had responded to the Village’s comments.  She then prepared the memorandum being reviewed tonight. The Village Manager will write the cover letter and forward the WAC’s memorandum to the NYS Department of State.

Chairperson Allen stated that, at tonight’s meeting, the WAC can either augment or accept, as is, this memorandum.

Chairperson Allen suggested a small word change in the third sentence of the third paragraph.  The word “allowed” should be changed to “stated” to read:  “…..we have taken note of the comment that district engineers can impose more restrictive limits than stated in the permits.”

Chairperson Allen went over the content of the memorandum.  The memorandum states in the beginning that the WAC finds the issuance plan consistent with the Village’s LWRP overall and commends the Corps for the continuing improvements to protections (of coastal areas) and processes.  The memorandum then notes that the WAC had made two specific comments in its May 22, 2000 memorandum on Nationwide Permits, both of which were considered under the Discussion of Public Comments section of the Federal Register notice.  The WAC’s comment on Utility Line Activities suggested limiting the time for trench construction and retention of side cast materials to 30 days with a possible extension to 60 days rather than the proposed 90 days with a possible extension to 180 days.  Although this suggestion was not taken, (it is duly noted that) district engineers can impose more restrictive limits than stated in the permits.  The other suggestion pertained to coverage areas, e.g., residential, commercial, etc.  The WAC had suggested that percentages of disturbed areas be used instead of the acreage and linear feet.  If the permitted losses were expressed as a percentage of the total area or length of the project’s water body or stream, then smaller projects would have proportional impacts.  This (second) suggestion was also not taken by the ACOE, but it was considered.

Mr. Kane referred to the ACOE materials received for tonight’s meeting, stating that what he did not see in any of the materials he read was any mention of blasting.  He only brings this up because of the blasting that is being proposed with the Millennium Pipeline project.  Mr. Wiegman noted that the WAC does not have before it tonight the total (original) document; it just has the comment section.  Mr. Kane stated that he did not know for sure if New York State has a permitting process for blasting.  He stated again that he did not see anything on blasting in the ACOE’s appendix.  He realized, however, that he did not have the total Federal Register before him.  Mr. Wiegman thought that the WAC could probably have a quick answer to this question by calling Steven Resler’s office at the NYS Department of State.

Mr. Kane told the others that he visited the ACOE government web site and read, on the subject of blasting, that a contractor works with the District Engineer.  There is no mention of blasting permits.

The WAC members present decided to write another (separate) letter to Steven Resler of the NYS Department of State asking whether blasting within the coastal zone is covered by the Nationwide Permit re-issuance.  If so, the WAC would like to know if there are any changes in the Federal Register notice(s) on what the blasting regulations would be.  

Chairperson Allen asked the WAC members if there were any other comments/modifications to the WAC memorandum, to which there were none.

Chairperson Allen entertained a motion to accept the memorandum as amended tonight.  The motion was made by Mr. Kane, seconded by Mr. Wiegman and carried by a vote of 3 to 0.  WAC member, Sally Odland, was not present when the vote was taken.  


The minutes of the Wednesday, January 23, 2002 meeting were approved on a motion by Mr. Wiegman, seconded by Ms. Odland and carried by a vote of 4 to 0.


There being no further business to come before the Committee, the meeting duly adjourned at 7:40 P.M.

Respectfully submitted,

Sylvia Mills