SUBJECT: The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Albuquerque and Omaha Districts (Corps), are proposing to modify Regional General Permit (RGP) 5 for Ditch-Related Activities in the State of Colorado. This notice is to inform interested parties of the proposed modification of RGP 5 with statewide coverage in Colorado and to solicit comments.
AUTHORITY: Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 for structures or work in or affecting navigable waters and Section 404 of the Clean Water Act for the discharge of dredged or fill material in waters of the United States (WOTUS).
PURPOSE AND NEED: The purpose of this modification is to remove references to the Colorado Regional General Permit Pre-Construction Notification form (also referred to as “Attachment B”). This proposed modification would allow applicants to utilize either the standard nationwide permit (NWP) pre-construction notification (PCN) form (ENG 6082) or a letter containing the required PCN information. This modification will remove the need to use a separate PCN form for RGP applications in Colorado, allowing for a more standardized PCN submittal whether submitting for an RGP or NWP.
The original purpose of this RGP will not change which is to authorize discharges into ditches that have minimal individual or cumulative adverse effects on the aquatic environment.
SCOPE OF ACTIVITIES: The types of activities covered under this permit are those that result in discharges of dredged or fill material into jurisdictional irrigation and drainage ditches (ditches). Irrigation ditches convey irrigation water to or away from irrigated lands. Drainage ditches increase the drainage of a particular land area. To the extent that a Corps permit is required, activities authorized by this RGP include:
- Construction of irrigation ditches,
- Relocation/realignment of existing irrigation ditches,
- Converting existing ditches into pipes,
- Filling of existing ditches, and
- Lining or armoring existing ditches.
This RGP also authorizes temporary structures, fills, and work, including the use of temporary mats, necessary to conduct the ditch-related activity. In accordance with 33 CFR 322.2(f)(1), this RGP authorizes activities that are substantially similar in nature that would result in no more than minimal individual and cumulative adverse effects on the aquatic environment, when conducted under the terms and conditions of this permit.
LENGTH OF AUTHORIZATION: This RGP, if modified, will expire 5 years from the original date of issuance: July 30, 2024.
OTHER GOVERNMENTAL AUTHORIZATIONS: Water quality certification or a waiver, as required under Section 401 of the Clean Water Act, is required for this regional general permit. In Colorado, excluding tribal lands, regional general permits are unconditionally certified by statute.
COMMENT PERIOD: All comments pertaining to this public notice must reach this office on or before April 9, 2023. Extensions of the comment period may be granted for valid reasons provided a written request is received by the limiting date. If no comments are received by that date, it will be considered that there are no objections. Anyone may request, in writing, that a public hearing be held to consider this effort. Requests shall specifically state, with particularity, the reason(s) for holding a public hearing. If the Corps determines that the information received in response to this notice is inadequate for thorough evaluation, a public hearing may be warranted. If a public hearing is warranted, interested parties will be notified of the time, date, and location. Please note that names and addresses of those who submit comments in response to this public notice may be made publicly available through the Freedom of Information Act.
SUBMITTING COMMENTS: Written comments, referencing Public Notice SPA-2021-00064, must be submitted to the office listed below on or before April 9, 2023.
Tucker Feyder, Senior Project Manager
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Albuquerque District
Southern Colorado Branch
1970 East 3rd Avenue, Suite 109
Durango, Colorado 81301
Phone: (970) 259-1604 ext. 2
Please note that all written comments received are subject to release to the public through the Freedom of Information Act.