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COMMISSION ACTIONS JULY 2013

The following are the agenda items from the Commission's regular meeting held July 23, 2013 at Commission headquarters.  The Commission's actions are in bold.

** COMMISSIONER TRAVELSTEAD LED A MOMENT OF SILENCE FOR ASSOCIATE COMMISSIONER JOE PALMER, WHO DIED OF CANCER ON JULY 11 AT THE AGE OF 58, AND WELCOMED TWO NEW ASSOCIATE COMMISSIONERS TO THE BOARD, A.J. ERSKINE AND KEN NEILL. [Audio Associate Commissioner Joe Palmer] [Audio Welcome to New Associate Commissioners]

** APPROVAL OF AGENDA.  THE MEETING AGENDA WAS APPROVED WITH THE ADDITION OF A DISCUSSION ON A CONTINUANCE REQUEST PERTAINING TO AGENDA ITEM 7 (WHITE CLOUD NINE VENTURES, L.P.).  ASSOCIATE COMMISSIONER BOBBY BECK WAS ABSENT FROM THE MEETING.
[Audio Agenda]

1.  MINUTES of previous meeting.  THE MINUTES OF THE JUNE COMMISSION MEETING WERE APPROVED AS PRESENTED. 
[Audio Item 1]

2.  PERMITS (Projects over $500,000 with no objections and with staff recommendation for approval).  NONE.
[Audio Item 2]

3.  CONSENT AGENDA ITEMSNONE.
[Audio Item 3]

4.  CLOSED MEETING FOR CONSULTATION WITH, OR BRIEFING BY COUNSEL.  NONE.
[Audio Item 4]

5.  CHARLES HOGGE, #13-0628, requests authorization to construct a 14-foot by 32-foot open-sided boathouse at the channelward end of a private, noncommercial, open-pile pier extending 67 feet channelward of mean high water adjacent to his property situated along the Northeast Branch of Sarah Creek at 8560 Blakes View Road in Gloucester County.  The project is protested by an adjacent property owner.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED THE PROJECT BUT RELOCATED IT APPROXIMATELY 65 FEET WEST OF THE DOWNSTREAM PROPERTY LINE IN ORDER TO LESSEN THE IMPACT ON A TIDAL FRINGE MARSH AND THE ADJOINING PROPERTY OWNER. 
[Audio Item 5]

6.  JOSEPH MORRISSEY, #12-1645, requests after-the-fact authorization to retain a 112 linear foot cinder block bulkhead encroaching over 2,546 square feet of non-vegetated tidal wetlands at his property situated along the James River at 1308 Chaffins Bluff Lane in Henrico County.  The project requires a wetlands permit.  Continued from the June 25, 2013, Commission meeting.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED THE AFTER-THE-FACT PERMIT TO INCLUDE FILTER CLOTH BEHIND THE BULKHEAD, AND WITH A CIVIL CHARGE OF $1,000 IN LIEU OF FURTHER ENFORCEMENT, FINDING THE PROJECT WAS CONSTRUCTED WITH A MINOR DEGREE OF ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT AND A MINOR DEVIATION OF NON-COMPLIANCE WITH PERMITTING REQUIREMENTS.
[Audio Item 6]

7.  WHITE CLOUD NINE VENTURES, L.P., #12-0164, requests after-the-fact authorization to retain the placement of 130 cubic yards of Class II riprap on State-owned subaqueous bottom and an 18-foot wide access road crossing with an open box culvert over 35 linear feet of the Little River at a parcel identified as MCPI#397-26-7021 near the confluence of the Little River and Hungry Run in Loudoun County.  The project is protested.  AFTER AN HOUR-LONG DISCUSSION, THE COMMISSION AGREED TO A REQUEST BY THE PIEDMONT ENVIRONMENTAL COUNCIL TO CONTINUE THE MATTER UNTIL NEXT APRIL, WHEN A LAWSUIT CONCERNING USE OF THE PROPERTY IS EXPECTED TO BE DECIDED IN COURT.  THE COUNCIL OBJECTS TO THE ISSUANCE OF AN AFTER-THE-FACT PERMIT TO AUTHORIZE THE 18-FOOT WIDE ACCESS ROAD CROSSING.   THE COMMISSION DECLINED A COUNCIL REQUEST TO ISSUE AN ORDER PROHIBITING USE OF THE ROAD CROSSING UNTIL THE LAWSUIT IS HEARD AND THE COMMISSION ADDRESSES THE AFTER-THE-FACT PERMIT REQUEST.
[Audio Item 7]

8.  PUBLIC COMMENT.  RICK LOCKHART INTRODUCED HIMSELF TO THE COMMISSION AS THE REPRESENTATIVE OF THE VIRGINIA CHARTER BOAT ASSOCIATION.
KIM HUSKEY, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE VIRGINIA SEAFOOD COUNCIL, WELCOMED NEW ASSOCIATE COMMISSIONERS A.J. ERSKINE AND KEN NEILL TO THE BOARD AND EXTENDED HER CONDOLENCES ON THE PASSING OF ASSOCIATE COMMISSIONER JOE PALMER.  
ALSO, A.W. WILLIAMS TOLD THE COMMISSION HE OBJECTS TO AN APPLICATION TO LEASE SOME OYSTER GROUNDS IN POCOMOKE SOUND.   HE WAS TOLD THE APPLICATION IS BEING REVIEWED BY STAFF.
[Audio Item 8]

9.  POUND NET:  Case involving protests of an application to the Commission to license a pound net at a new location, in accordance with Chapter 4VAC20-25-10 et seq., “Pertaining to Pound Net Siting Public Interest Review.”  THE COMMISSION AGREED UNANIMOUSLY TO APPROVE A POUND NET REQUESTED BY WATERMAN ERIC WELLER FOR A LOCATION OFF GWYNN’S ISLAND.  NEARBY PROPERTY OWNER CHRISTIE DAVIS SPOKE AGAINST THE APPLICATION, SAYING SHE FEARED DOLPHINS AND TURTLES WOULD GET ENTANGLED IN THE NET AND THAT THE NET WOULD POSE A POTENTIAL HAZARD TO RECREATIONAL BOATERS.
[Audio Item 9a][Audio Item 9b]

10.  PUBLIC HEARING:  Proposed amendments to Chapter 4VAC20-900-10 et seq., “Pertaining to Horseshoe Crabs” to provide time of year and placement restrictions for gill nets in Toms Cove, Accomack County.  THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY AGREED TO REQUIRE GILL NETS SET IN TOM’S COVE NEAR CHINCOTEAGUE TO BE ANCHORED ON ONE END AT LEAST 800 FEET FROM THE SHORE FROM APRIL 1-MAY 31 AND TO PROHIBIT ANY GILL NET FROM BEING SET IN THE COVE FROM SUNSET TO SUNRISE FROM JUNE 1-JUNE 30.  THIS WAS AN ATTEMPT TO SETTLE A CONFLICT BETWEEN GILL NETTERS AND HAND HARVESTERS OF HORSESHOE CRABS ON SHORE.  THE COMMISSION DECIDED NOT TO REQUIRE THOSE GILL NETS TO BE SET NO LESS THAN 500 FEET FROM EACH OTHER.
[Audio Item 10] 

11.  REQUEST FOR PUBLIC HEARING:  (1) Proposed amendments to Chapter 4VAC20-720-10 et seq., "Pertaining to Restrictions on Oyster Harvest," to establish the 2013-2014 public harvest seasons and (2) proposed amendments to Chapter 4VAC20-260-10 et seq., "Pertaining to Designation of Seed and Clean Cull Areas," to modify oyster culling procedures.”  OYSTER REPLENISHMENT DEPARTMENT HEAD JIM WESSON BRIEFED THE COMMISSION ON THE STATUS OF THIS YEAR’S OYSTER HARVEST, SO FAR, AND HE SAID HE ANTICIPATED IT WOULD BE AS GOOD AS LAST YEAR’S HARVEST.  OYSTER HARVESTS HAVE INCREASED 10-FOLD OVER THE PAST DECADE. HE SAID HE PLANS TO RECOMMEND AT THE AUGUST COMMISSION MEETING ONLY MINOR CHANGES TO THE UPCOMING FALL/WINTER PUBLIC OYSTER FISHERY.   AFTER A DISCUSSION ON OYSTER CULLING AND CONTAINERS, THE COMMISSION AGREED TO HOLD A PUBLIC HEARING NEXT MONTH ON A LONG-STANDING REQUEST BY OYSTER HARVESTERS TO BE ALLOWED TO USE LARGE ORANGE BASKETS WHEN TRANSPORTING DAILY OYSTER HARVESTS TO DOCK.
[Audio Item 11]

THE FOLLOWING SO-CALLED PAGE 2 ITEMS (PROJECTS OVER $500,000 WITH NO OBJECTIONS AND WITH STAFF RECOMMENDATION FOR APPROVAL):

NONE

THERE WERE NO PAGE THREE CONSENT AGENDA ITEMS.

NONE



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