** APPROVAL OF AGENDA. THE AGENDA WAS UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED AS
1. MINUTES of previous meeting. THE MINUTES OF THE AUGUST MEETING WERE UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED AS WRITTEN [audio item 1]
2. PERMITS (Projects over $500,000 with no objections and with staff recommendation for approval). THE SO-CALLED PAGE 2 ITEMS, DELINEATED BELOW AS 2A, 2B, 2C AND 2D WERE UNANIMOUSLY APPROVED. [audio item 2]
3. CONSENT AGENDA ITEMS. NONE
4. CLOSED MEETING FOR CONSULTATION WITH, OR BRIEFING BY, COUNSEL. THE COMMISSION HELD A CLOSED MEETING TO DISCUSS ACTIVE LITIGATION. [audio item 4]
5. COTTAGE LINE CIVIC LEAGUE, #13-1899-D, NICHOLAS VANDERGRIFT, #13-1809-D, JUDITH SWYSTUN ET AL., #13-1808-D, CATHERINE McCOY, #13-1803-D, CATHERINE McCOY, #13-1804-D, THOMAS AND THELMA DRAKE, #13-1799-D. Commission review on appeal by 52 freeholders of the June 11, 2014, decision by the Norfolk Wetlands Board to approve the above-referenced applications in modified form with special conditions, to include excavating sand from the dune as proposed or to a minimum height of 14 feet, and relocating the excavated sand channelward of the existing dune face along the Ocean View shoreline adjacent to the Chesapeake Bay. Continued from the July 22, 2014, Commission meeting. THE COMMISSION UNANIMOUSLY VOTED TO GRANT THE APPLICANTS’ REQUEST TO CONTINUE THE MATTER TO THE JANUARY MEETING. THE ADDITIONAL TIME WAS REQUESTED TO PROVIDE AN OPPORTUNITY FOR THE APPLICANTS TO CONTINUE THEIR DISCUSSIONS WITH THE CITY OF NORFOLK REGARDING A SAND MANAGEMENT PLAN. NEITHER THE APPELLANT NOR THE CITY HAD ANY OBJECTION TO THE CONTINUANCE REQUEST. [audio item 5]
6. VIRGINIA ELECTRIC AND POWER CO., #14-0760, requests authorization to conduct a shoreline stabilization project in Priority Areas 2 and 3 and the South Dike Area adjacent to their facility at 2701 Vepco Street situated along the Southern Branch of the Elizabeth River in the City of Chesapeake. The project requires a Wetlands permit. THE COMMISSION VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO APPROVE THE PROJECT, IN KEEPING WITH STAFF RECOMMENDATION, CONDITIONED UPON THE PURCHASE OF 4,190 SQUARE FEET OF WETLAND CREDITS FROM THE LIBERTYVILLE MITIGATION BANK LOCATED IN CHESAPEAKE. [audio item 6]
7. VIRGINIA ELECTRIC AND POWER CO., #14-1019, requests authorization to conduct upgrades to existing transmission lines, to include the installation of new steel pole support structures along Lines 46 and 74, in the vicinity of 2701 Vepco Street situated along a canal to Deep Creek in the City of Chesapeake. The project requires a Wetlands permit. THE COMMISSION VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO APPROVE THE PROJECT AS PROPOSED. [audio item 7]
8. JAMES W. SPEEGLE, JR., #14-0997, requests authorization to construct a 512 square foot open-sided boathouse adjacent to an existing private pier at his property at 1118 Wormley Creek Drive, situated along the West Branch of Wormley Creek in York County. The project is protested by an adjacent property owner. THE COMMISSION VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO APPROVE THE PROJECT AS PROPOSED. [audio item 8]
9. PUBLIC COMMENT: MR. ELLIS JAMES ADDRESSED THE COMMISSION REGARDING A CONCERN OVER SAND DUNE ALTERATIONS AND EROSION IN THE WAKE OF RISING SEA LEVELS. [audio item 9]
10. REPEAT OFFENDERS: THE COMMISSION HEARD FOUR REPEAT OFFENDER CASES. EMPHASIZING THE IMPACT THAT WARM WATER VIOLATIONS CAN HAVE ON PUBLIC HEALTH AND THE IMPLICATIONS OF HARVESTING UNDERSIZED FISH AND CRABS, THE COMMISSION VOTED TO REVOKE THE LICENSE AND TIDAL FISHING PRIVILEGES OF ONE INDIVIDUAL FOR A PERIOD OF ONE YEAR, REVOKE THE LICENSES AND TIDAL FISHING PRIVILEGES OF ONE INDIVIDUAL FOR 6 MONTHS, TO PLACE ONE INDIVIDUAL ON PROBATION FOR A PERIOD OF TWO YEARS, AND TO REVOKE THE LICENSE AND TIDAL FISHING PRIVILEGES OF ONE PERSON FOR ONE YEAR FOLLOWED BY ONE YEAR OF PROBATION. [audio item 10]
11. FAILURE TO REPORT: Cases involving failure to report commercial harvests, in accordance with Chapter 4 VAC 20-610-10 et seq., “Pertaining to Commercial Fishing and Mandatory Harvest Reporting.” THE COMMISSION HEARD SIX CASES INVOLVING FAILURE TO REPORT COMMERCIAL HARVEST. THREE INDIVIDUALS DID NOT APPEAR FOR THEIR RESPECTIVE CASES, AND THE COMMISSION VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO POSTPONE THE HEARING OF ONE CASE UNTIL JANUARY 2015, AND TO SUSPEND THE LICENSES OF TWO INDIVIDUALS UNTIL THEY APPEAR BEFORE THE COMMISSION. THE COMMISSION ALSO VOTED TO PLACE TWO INDIVIDUALS ON PROBATION FOR A PERIOD OF ONE YEAR, AND TO PLACE ONE INDIVIDUAL ON PROBATION FOR A PERIOD OF TWO YEARS. [audio item 11]
12. PUBLIC HEARING: Proposed adoption of previous emergency amendments to Chapter 4 VAC 20-751-10 et seq., “Pertaining to the Setting and Mesh Size of Gill Nets” modifying gill net tending requirements on the ocean side of Accomack and Northampton Counties and restricting the use of agents in the Assateague Island Small-Mesh Gill Net Area. THE COMMISSION VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO ADOPT EMERGENCY AMENDMENTS AS PERMANENT AMENDMENTS TO CHAPTER 4 VAC 20-751-10 ET SEQ., “PERTAINING TO THE SETTING AND MESH SIZE OF GILL NETS,” EFFECTIVE SEPTEMBER 25, 2014. THESE AMENDMENTS WILL ALLOW NO AGENTS FOR GILL NET FISHERMEN WHO FISH ADJACENT TO ASSATEAGUE ISLAND AND WILL ALSO CONFORM SMALL MESH GILL NETS AND LARGE MESH GILL NETS TO THE FEDERAL TAKE REDUCTION PLANS. [audio item 12]
13. PUBLIC HEARING: Amendments Chapter 4 VAC 20-490-10 et seq., “Pertaining to Sharks” to raise spiny dogfish trip limits and modify the definition of small mesh gill nets and large mesh gill nets. THE COMMISSION VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO ACCEPT STAFF RECOMMENDATION TO INCREASE THE COMMERCIAL SPINY DOGFISH DAILY VESSEL LIMIT FROM 4,000 POUNDS TO 5,000 POUNDS. THE COMMISSION ALSO VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO DEFINE SMALL-MESH GILL NETS AS ANY GILL NET WITH A STRETCHED MESH SIZE OF FIVE INCHES OR LESS, AND TO DEFINE LARGE-MESH GILL NETS AS ANY GILL NET WITH A STRETCHED MESH SIZE OF GREATER THAN FIVE INCHES. [audio item 13]
14. REQUEST FOR PUBLIC HEARING: Proposed amendments to Chapter 4 VAC 20-910-10 et seq. “Pertaining to Scup (Porgy),” to increase the possession limit for scup, during the Winter II Period (November 1 through December 31), from 8,000 pounds to 18,000 pounds. THE COMMISSION VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO ADVERTISE FOR AN OCTOBER 28, 2014 PUBLIC HEARING ON PROPOSED AMENDMENTS TO CHAPTER 4 VAC 20-910-10 ET SEQ., “PERTAINING TO SCUP (PORGY) TO INCREASE THE POSSESSION LIMIT FOR SCUP DURING THE WINTER II PERIOD. [audio item 14]
15. REQUEST FOR PUBLIC HEARING: Proposed amendments to Chapter 4 VAC 20-1090-10- et seq., "Pertaining to Licensing Requirements and License Fees,' to increase saltwater recreational license fees to ensure continuation of core recreational programs. THE COMMISSION VOTED UNANIMOUSLY TO ADVERTISE FOR AN OCTOBER 28, 2014 PUBLIC HEARING ON CHAPTER 4 VAC 20-1090-10 ET SEQ., “PERTAINING TO LICENSING REQUIREMENTS AND LICENSE FEES,” TO INCREASE SALTWATER RECREATIONAL LICENSE FEES TO ENSURE CONTINUATION OF CORE RECREATIONAL PROGRAMS. THESE CORE RECREATIONAL PROGRAMS INCLUDE, BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO, RECREATIONAL LAW ENFORCEMENT, THE VIRGINIA SALTWATER TOURNAMENT, THE GAME FISH TAGGING PROGRAM, AND THE ARTIFICIAL REEF PROGRAM. THE RECREATIONAL LICENSE FEES HAVE ONLY BEEN INCREASE TWO TIMES SINCE 1993. THE RECREATIONAL FISHING ADVISORY BOARD IS SUPPORTIVE OF THE PROPOSED AMENDMENTS IN ORDER TO CONTINUE THE FUNDING OF CORE RECREATIONAL PROGRAMS. [audio item 15]
THE FOLLOWING SO-CALLED PAGE TWO ITEMS WERE APPROVED UNANIMOUSLY:
2A. DOMINION TERMINAL ASSOCIATES, LLP, #14-1144, requests authorization to hydraulically or mechanically dredge up to 166,750 cubic yards of State-owned subaqueous material, and to subsequently maintenance dredge up to 80,000 cubic yards per two-year dredging cycle, to attain and maintain depths of 57 feet at mean low water adjacent to the Dominion Terminals Associates Pier 11 facility located along the James River at 600 Harbor Road in the City of Newport News. All dredge material will be placed in the Corps of Engineers Craney Island Dredged Material Management Area. Staff recommends approval of the project with a royalty assessment of $75,037.50 for the dredging of 166,750 cubic yards of State-owned subaqueous material at a rate of $0.45 per cubic yard.
2B. NEWPORT NEWS DEPARTMENT OF ENGINEERING, #14-0130, requests authorization to modify an existing permit to replace the James River Fishing Pier by extending the length of the proposed pier by an additional 1,713 linear feet over what was previously authorized. The total length of the proposed pier is now 2,969 linear feet, of which 2,903 feet will be channelward of mean low water, along the James River immediately upstream of the Route 17 James River Bridge in the City of Newport News.
2C. AMERICAN INFRASTRUCTURE-VA, INC., #14-1195, requests authorization to construct a 78-foot wide by 85-foot long 4-lane clearspan bridge across Flatlick Branch, with 169 linear feet of riprap scour protection, to facilitate construction of the Walney Road Bridge Replacement and Road Widening Project in the Chantilly area of Fairfax County. Permittee shall execute a transfer of this permit to the Virginia Department of Transportation upon their acceptance of the structure(s) authorized herein.
2D. CHERRY POINT PROPERTY OWNERS, ET AL , #14-0111, requests authorization to install a precast concrete bio-engineered artificial reef extending 100 feet channelward of mean low water along the Piankatank River adjacent to Lot 7A1 on Old Cherry Point Road in Mathews County. The proposed artificial reef is located on Additional Public Ground defined in §28.2-643 of the Virginia Code.