Receipt of Incidental Take Permit Application and Proposed Habitat Conservation Plan for the Sand Skink and Blue-Tailed Mole Skink, Polk County, FL; Categorical Exclusion, 67008 [2020-23330]

Download as PDF 67008 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 204 / Wednesday, October 21, 2020 / Notices Authority The Service provides this notice under section 10(c) of the ESA (16 U.S.C. 1539(c)) and NEPA regulation 40 CFR 1506.6. Roxanna Hinzman, Field Supervisor, South Florida Ecological Services Office. [FR Doc. 2020–23329 Filed 10–20–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4333–15–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service [Docket No. FWS–R4–ES–2020–0117; FXES11140400000–201–FF04EF2000] Receipt of Incidental Take Permit Application and Proposed Habitat Conservation Plan for the Sand Skink and Blue-Tailed Mole Skink, Polk County, FL; Categorical Exclusion Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability; request for comments and information. AGENCY: We, the Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce receipt of an application from the Polk County Board of County Commissioners (applicant) for an incidental take permit (ITP) under the Endangered Species Act. The applicant requests the ITP to take the federally listed sand skink and bluetailed mole skink incidental to the construction of the Loughman Fire Station in Polk County, Florida. We request public comment on the application, which includes the applicant’s proposed habitat conservation plan (HCP), and on the Service’s preliminary determination that this HCP qualifies as ‘‘low-effect,’’ categorically excluded under the National Environmental Policy Act. To make this determination, we used our environmental action statement and low-effect screening form, both of which are also available for public review. DATES: We must receive your written comments on or before November 20, 2020. SUMMARY: Obtaining Documents: You may obtain copies of the documents online in Docket No. FWS–R4–ES– 2020–0117 at http:// www.regulations.gov. Submitting Comments: If you wish to submit comments on any of the documents, you may do so in writing by any of the following methods: khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with NOTICES ADDRESSES: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:58 Oct 20, 2020 Jkt 253001 • Online: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments on Docket No. FWS–R4–ES– 2020–0117. • U.S. Mail: Public Comments Processing, Attn: Docket No. FWS–R4– ES–2020–0117; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, MS: PRB/3W, 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041–3803. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Dennis Hamlin, by telephone at 772– 469–4225 or via email at dennis_ hamlin@fws.gov. Individuals who are hearing impaired or speech impaired may call the Federal Relay Service at 1– 800–877–8339 for TTY assistance. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: We, the Fish and Wildlife Service, announce receipt of an application from the Polk County Board of County Commissioners (applicant) for an incidental take permit (ITP) under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA; 16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.). The applicant requests the ITP to take the federally listed sand skink (Neoseps reynoldsi) and bluetailed mole skink (Eumeces egregious lividus) (skinks) incidental to the construction of the Loughman Fire Station in Polk County, Florida. We request public comment on the application, which includes the applicant’s HCP, and on the Service’s preliminary determination that this HCP qualifies as ‘‘low-effect,’’ categorically excluded, under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA; 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.). To make this determination, we used our environmental action statement and low-effect screening form, both of which are also available for public review. Project The applicant requests a 10-year ITP to take skinks through the conversion of approximately 1.54 acres (ac) of occupied skink foraging and sheltering habitat incidental to the construction of the Loughman Fire Station on a 5.01-ac parcel in Section 13, Township 26, South, Range 27 East in Polk County, Florida. The applicant proposes to mitigate for take of the skinks by purchasing credits equivalent to 3.08 ac of skink-occupied habitat from a Service-approved conservation bank in Polk County. The Service would require the applicant to purchase the credits prior to engaging in any phase of the project. Public Availability of Comments Before including your address, phone number, email address, or other PO 00000 Frm 00083 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 personal identifying information in your comment, be aware that your entire comment, including your personal identifying information, may be made available to the public. While you may request that we withhold your personal identifying information, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. Our Preliminary Determination The Service has made a preliminary determination that the applicant’s project, including land clearing, construction of the Loughman Fire Station, and the proposed mitigation measures, would individually and cumulatively have a minor or negligible effect on the skinks and the environment. Therefore, we have preliminarily concluded that the ITP for this project would qualify for categorical exclusion, and the HCP would be low effect under our NEPA regulations at 43 CFR 46.205 and 46.210. A low-effect HCP is one that would result in (1) minor or negligible effects on federally listed, proposed, and candidate species and their habitats; (2) minor or negligible effects on other environmental values or resources; and (3) impacts that, when considered together with the impacts of other past, present, and reasonable foreseeable similarly situated projects, would not result in significant cumulative effects to environmental values or resources over time. Next Steps The Service will evaluate the application and the comments to determine whether to issue the requested permit. We will also conduct an intra-Service consultation pursuant to section 7 of the ESA to evaluate the effects of the proposed take. After considering the preceding matters, we will determine whether the permit issuance criteria of section 10(a)(1)(B) of the ESA have been met. If met, the Service will issue ITP number TE79912D–0 to the Polk County Board of County Commissioners. Authority The Service provides this notice under section 10(c) of the ESA (16 U.S.C. 1539(c)) and NEPA regulation 40 CFR 1506.6. Roxanna Hinzman, Field Supervisor, South Florida Ecological Services Office. [FR Doc. 2020–23330 Filed 10–20–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4333–15–P E:\FR\FM\21OCN1.SGM 21OCN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 204 (Wednesday, October 21, 2020)]
[Notices]
[Page 67008]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-23330]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Fish and Wildlife Service

[Docket No. FWS-R4-ES-2020-0117; FXES11140400000-201-FF04EF2000]


Receipt of Incidental Take Permit Application and Proposed 
Habitat Conservation Plan for the Sand Skink and Blue-Tailed Mole 
Skink, Polk County, FL; Categorical Exclusion

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability; request for comments and information.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: We, the Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce receipt 
of an application from the Polk County Board of County Commissioners 
(applicant) for an incidental take permit (ITP) under the Endangered 
Species Act. The applicant requests the ITP to take the federally 
listed sand skink and blue-tailed mole skink incidental to the 
construction of the Loughman Fire Station in Polk County, Florida. We 
request public comment on the application, which includes the 
applicant's proposed habitat conservation plan (HCP), and on the 
Service's preliminary determination that this HCP qualifies as ``low-
effect,'' categorically excluded under the National Environmental 
Policy Act. To make this determination, we used our environmental 
action statement and low-effect screening form, both of which are also 
available for public review.

DATES: We must receive your written comments on or before November 20, 
2020.

ADDRESSES: Obtaining Documents: You may obtain copies of the documents 
online in Docket No. FWS-R4-ES-2020-0117 at http://www.regulations.gov.
    Submitting Comments: If you wish to submit comments on any of the 
documents, you may do so in writing by any of the following methods:
     Online: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the 
instructions for submitting comments on Docket No. FWS-R4-ES-2020-0117.
     U.S. Mail: Public Comments Processing, Attn: Docket No. 
FWS-R4-ES-2020-0117; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, MS: PRB/3W, 5275 
Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Dennis Hamlin, by telephone at 772-
469-4225 or via email at [email protected]. Individuals who are 
hearing impaired or speech impaired may call the Federal Relay Service 
at 1-800-877-8339 for TTY assistance.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: We, the Fish and Wildlife Service, announce 
receipt of an application from the Polk County Board of County 
Commissioners (applicant) for an incidental take permit (ITP) under the 
Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA; 16 U.S.C. 1531 et 
seq.). The applicant requests the ITP to take the federally listed sand 
skink (Neoseps reynoldsi) and blue-tailed mole skink (Eumeces egregious 
lividus) (skinks) incidental to the construction of the Loughman Fire 
Station in Polk County, Florida. We request public comment on the 
application, which includes the applicant's HCP, and on the Service's 
preliminary determination that this HCP qualifies as ``low-effect,'' 
categorically excluded, under the National Environmental Policy Act 
(NEPA; 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.). To make this determination, we used our 
environmental action statement and low-effect screening form, both of 
which are also available for public review.

Project

    The applicant requests a 10-year ITP to take skinks through the 
conversion of approximately 1.54 acres (ac) of occupied skink foraging 
and sheltering habitat incidental to the construction of the Loughman 
Fire Station on a 5.01-ac parcel in Section 13, Township 26, South, 
Range 27 East in Polk County, Florida. The applicant proposes to 
mitigate for take of the skinks by purchasing credits equivalent to 
3.08 ac of skink-occupied habitat from a Service-approved conservation 
bank in Polk County. The Service would require the applicant to 
purchase the credits prior to engaging in any phase of the project.

Public Availability of Comments

    Before including your address, phone number, email address, or 
other personal identifying information in your comment, be aware that 
your entire comment, including your personal identifying information, 
may be made available to the public. While you may request that we 
withhold your personal identifying information, we cannot guarantee 
that we will be able to do so.

Our Preliminary Determination

    The Service has made a preliminary determination that the 
applicant's project, including land clearing, construction of the 
Loughman Fire Station, and the proposed mitigation measures, would 
individually and cumulatively have a minor or negligible effect on the 
skinks and the environment. Therefore, we have preliminarily concluded 
that the ITP for this project would qualify for categorical exclusion, 
and the HCP would be low effect under our NEPA regulations at 43 CFR 
46.205 and 46.210. A low-effect HCP is one that would result in (1) 
minor or negligible effects on federally listed, proposed, and 
candidate species and their habitats; (2) minor or negligible effects 
on other environmental values or resources; and (3) impacts that, when 
considered together with the impacts of other past, present, and 
reasonable foreseeable similarly situated projects, would not result in 
significant cumulative effects to environmental values or resources 
over time.

Next Steps

    The Service will evaluate the application and the comments to 
determine whether to issue the requested permit. We will also conduct 
an intra-Service consultation pursuant to section 7 of the ESA to 
evaluate the effects of the proposed take. After considering the 
preceding matters, we will determine whether the permit issuance 
criteria of section 10(a)(1)(B) of the ESA have been met. If met, the 
Service will issue ITP number TE79912D-0 to the Polk County Board of 
County Commissioners.

Authority

    The Service provides this notice under section 10(c) of the ESA (16 
U.S.C. 1539(c)) and NEPA regulation 40 CFR 1506.6.

Roxanna Hinzman,
Field Supervisor, South Florida Ecological Services Office.
[FR Doc. 2020-23330 Filed 10-20-20; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4333-15-P