[Federal Register: November 23, 2007 (Volume 72, Number 225)]
[Page 65765]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Receipt of an Application for an Incidental Take Permit for 
Residential Construction in Charlotte County, FL

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice.


SUMMARY: We, the Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the 
availability of an incidental take permit (ITP) and Habitat 
Conservation Plan (HCP). The Carlisle Group (applicant) requests an ITP 
pursuant to section 10(a)(1)(B) of the Endangered Species Act of 1973, 
as amended (Act). The applicant anticipates taking about 12.72 acres of 
Florida scrub-jay (Aphelocoma coerulescens) (scrub-jay) foraging, 
sheltering, and nesting habitat incidental to lot preparation for the 
construction of a multiple-family apartment complex and supporting 
infrastructure in Charlotte County, Florida (project). The applicant's 
HCP describes the mitigation and minimization measures proposed to 
address the effects of the project on the scrub-jay.

DATES: We must receive your written comments on the ITP application and 
HCP on or before December 24, 2007.

information on how to submit your comments on the ITP application and 
HCP. You may obtain a copy of the ITP application and HCP by writing 
the South Florida Ecological Services Office, Attn: Permit number 
TE168754-0, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 1339 20th Street, Vero 
Beach, FL 32960-3559. In addition, we will make the ITP application and 
HCP available for public inspection by appointment during normal 
business hours at the above address.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Trish Adams, Fish and Wildlife 
Biologist, South Florida Ecological Services Office (see ADDRESSES); 
telephone: (772) 562-3909, ext. 232.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: If you wish to comment on the ITP 
application and HCP, you may submit comments by any one of the 
following methods. Please reference permit number TE168754-0 in such 
    1. Mail or hand-deliver comments to our South Florida Ecological 
Services Office address (see ADDRESSES).
    2. E-mail comments to trish_adams@fws.gov. If you do not receive a 
confirmation that we have received your e-mail message, contact us 
directly at the telephone number listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION 
    Before including your address, phone number, e-mail address, or 
other personal identifying information in your comments, you should be 
aware that your entire comment--including your personal identifying 
information--may be made publicly available at any time. While you can 
ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying 
information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be 
able to do so.
    Multiple-family apartment complex construction for the applicant's 
HCP will take place within Sections 04 and 5, Township 40, Range 23, 
Punta Gorda, Charlotte County, Florida, at the lot identified by 
property identification number 00952621460004. This lot is within 
scrub-jay-occupied habitat.
    The lot encompasses about 20.11 acres. The project will be 
constructed in two phases. Phase I consists of construction on 5.08 
acres of the western 12.47 acres, and Phase II consists of the eastern 
7.64 acres. Phase II construction is not expected to begin until Phase 
I is complete. The applicant proposes to place 2.85 acres of occupied 
scrub-jay habitat located in Phase I under a perpetual conservation 
easement. In order to minimize take on site, the applicant has reduced 
the site plan, will clear vegetation outside of the scrub-jay nesting 
season (March 1 through June 30) or will conduct a nest survey prior to 
vegetation clearing, and will landscape with native vegetation. The 
applicant proposes to mitigate for the loss of 12.72 acres of scrub-jay 
habitat by acquiring 25.44 acres of credit at a Service approved scrub-
jay conservation bank, or contributing a total of $569,417 to the 
Florida Scrub-jay Conservation Fund administered by The Nature 
Conservancy for Phase I impacts and an amount determined by multiplying 
15.28 acres and the cost per acre determined by the Florida Scrub-jay 
Conservation Fund at the time of Phase II impacts. Funds in the Florida 
Scrub-jay Conservation Fund are earmarked for use in the conservation 
and recovery of scrub-jays and may include habitat acquisition, 
restoration, and/or management.
    We have determined that the applicants' proposal, including the 
proposed mitigation and minimization measures, will have a minor or 
negligible effect on the species covered in the HCP. Therefore, the ITP 
is a ``low-effect'' project and qualifies as a categorical exclusion 
under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), as provided by the 
Department of the Interior Manual (516 DM 2 Appendix 1 and 516 DM 6 
Appendix 1). Low-effect HCPs are those involving (1) minor or 
negligible effects on federally listed or candidate species and their 
habitats and (2) minor or negligible effects on other environmental 
values or resources. Based on our review of public comments that we 
receive in response to this notice, we may revise this preliminary 
    We will evaluate the HCP and comments submitted thereon to 
determine whether the application meets the requirements of section 
10(a) of the Act (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.). If we determine that the 
application meets the requirements, we will issue the ITP for 
incidental take of the scrub-jay. We will also evaluate whether 
issuance of the section 10(a)(1)(B) ITP complies with section 7 of the 
Act by conducting an intra-Service section 7 consultation. We will use 
the results of this consultation, in combination with the above 
findings, in the final analysis to determine whether or not to issue 
the ITP.

    Authority: We provide this notice pursuant to Section 10 of the 
Endangered Species Act (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) and NEPA regulations 
(40 CFR 1506.6).

    Dated: November 1, 2007.
Paul Souza,
Field Supervisor, South Florida Ecological Services Office.
[FR Doc. E7-22816 Filed 11-21-07; 8:45 am]