Project Review Step 7 - Determinations and Package Submittal
The habitat present, species present, and critical habitat present columns should be filled in for all species / critical habitat by this point.
(A). For projects with Federal agency involvement: The ESA directs all Federal agencies to work to conserve endangered and threatened species and to use their authorities to further the purposes of the ESA. Section 7 of the ESA, called "Interagency Cooperation," is the mechanism by which Federal agencies ensure the actions they take, including those they fund or authorize, do not jeopardize the existence of any listed species. Here is a direct link to the Section 7 Consultation Handbook.
TIP: Here is a link to guidance on how to write a biological assessment.
NOTE: Only Federal agencies or their designated non-Federal representatives can complete informal Section 7 consultation with the Service. If interested, Federal agencies would need to designate a non-Federal representative, in writing, and can do this via email or letter to the Service. If you are not a Federal agency or their designated non-Federal representative, the Service can provide technical assistance to you, but cannot complete consultation with you directly.
1. If suitable habitat is absent for listed / proposed / or candidate species, or surveys for the species were negative, an appropriate determination for those species is that the project will result in "no effect" to those species. If there is no designated critical habitat within the action area, an appropriate determination is that the project will result in "no effect" to the critical habitat. If the determination for each species and critical habitat is "no effect" and the BGEPA determination is "no BGEPA permit required," Federal agencies can document this information for your files. If you choose to submit the project review package that supports your conclusions, this office will review the information.
2. If any listed / proposed / candidate species / or designated critical habitat occurs in or is likely to occur in the project action area, the proposed action must be evaluated to determine whether it may affect1 the species or critical habitat. If any species or critical habitat "may be affected by the proposed project" or the BGEPA determination is "BGEPA permit may be required," submit the project review package to this office for review. Attach the online project review request letter (MS Word format) and ensure you provide all requested information. We will not respond until we receive a complete project review package.
(B). For projects without Federal agency involvement: For projects not authorized, funded, or carried out by a Federal agency, consultation with the Service pursuant to Section 7 of the ESA is not required, but the prohibitions provided under the ESA still apply. For instance, no person is authorized to "take" 2 any listed wildlife species without appropriate authorizations from the Service. Therefore, we provide technical assistance to individuals and agencies to assist with project planning to avoid the potential for "take," or if take cannot be avoided, to provide assistance with their application for an incidental take permit pursuant to Section 10(a)(1)(B) of the ESA. Here is additional information on incidental take permits and habitat conservation plans (HCPs):
• Frequently Asked Questions on HCPs
• USFWS Habitat Conservation Plan Information
• HCP and Incidental Take Permit Process
• HCP Handbook
• 5-point Policy Initiative (Addendum to the HCP Handbook)
NOTE: Designated critical habitat is only applicable for projects with Federal agency involvement. No comments on critical habitat are needed for projects without Federal agency involvement.
- If suitable habitat is absent for a listed / proposed / or candidate species, or surveys for the species were negative, an appropriate determination for those wildlife species is “take is not anticipated.” If take is not anticipated and the BGEPA determination is “no BGEPA permit required,” you can document this information for your files. If you choose to submit the project review package that supports your conclusions, this office will review the information.
- If any listed / proposed / or candidate species occurs in or is likely to occur in the project action area, the proposed action must be evaluated to determine whether take is likely. If this is the case, or the BGEPA determination is “BGEPA permit may be required,” submit the project review package to this office for review. Attach the online project review request letter (MS Word Format) and ensure you provide all requested information. We will not respond until we receive a complete project review package.
If you are required to submit the project review package to this office, submit project review packages electronically to FW5ES_NYFO@fws.gov. Please note that any single email, including attachments, must be smaller than 25 MB. If a single email would be larger than 25 MB, please spread out multiple attachments among several emails (use the same subject name and project reference in all emails related to an individual project). Alternatively, please mail a hard copy or DVD containing the project review package to one of our offices.
Projects in Long Island and New York City:
Long Island Field Office
340 Smith Road
Shirley, NY 11967
Projects in the Rest of New York:
New York Field Office
3817 Luker Road
Cortland, NY 13045
Maintain a complete copy of the project review package in your files since it will become an integral part of your official record of compliance.
This completes the submission process. Please call if you have any questions.
1 Consider direct and indirect effects to the species/critical habitat. Indirect effects are effects that are caused by or will result from the proposed action and are later in time, but still reasonably certain to occur (50 CFR Section 402.02). For further discussion of effects analyses, please review pages 4-25 - 4-31 in our Section 7 Consultation Handbook.
2 Take is defined in Section 3 of the ESA as harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, capture, or collect, or to attempt to engage in any such conduct.
FWS Endangered Species Home Page • FWS Endangered Species Northeast Region