Posted on February 8, 2023
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Jacksonville District requests public comment on the draft Environmental Assessment (EA) and proposed Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) for the proposed Kissimmee River Restoration Project (KRRP) Increment 1 Temporary Deviation, Osceola and Polk counties, Florida. The project non-Federal sponsor is the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD). Comments are due March 7.
A virtual informational meeting is scheduled for Friday, February 24, from 1 to 2:30 p.m. There will be an opportunity for formal public comment during the meeting.
Virtual meeting on Kissimmee River Restoration Project (KRRP)Increment 1 Temporary Deviation
Feb. 24 1-2:30 p.m.
Meeting number (access code): 2764 566 9088
Meeting password: 4$ArpM@
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USACE invites the participation of Federal and State agencies, Native American Tribes, local agencies, interested parties and individuals in providing comments on the draft EA and proposed FONSI, which are available for review at https://www.saj.usace.army.mil/Deviations/. Comments are due March 7.
The Central and Southern Florida (C&SF) Flood Control Project was authorized by Section 203 of the Flood Control Act of 1948 (Public Law 80-858) and modified by subsequent acts as a comprehensive plan of improvement for flood control, drainage, and other purposes. The Kissimmee River Basin flood control works was authorized as an addition to the C&SF Project by Section 203 of the Flood Control Act of 1954 (Public Law 93-780) through the adoption of the comprehensive plan of improvement as recommended by the Chief of Engineers in House Document 643, Eightieth Congress (H.Doc. 80-643). Construction of the Kissimmee River Restoration Project (KRRP) was authorized by Section 101(8) of the 1992 Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) (Public Law 102-580) while the Kissimmee River Headwaters Revitalization Project was authorized by Section 46 of WRDA 1988 (Public Law 100-676). Subsequently, the KRRP and the Kissimmee River Headwaters Revitalization Project were combined into one project in 1994 and renamed the Kissimmee River, Florida Project, commonly referred to as the KRRP.
The purpose of this first incremental update of the full Headwaters Revitalization Schedule (HRS), described as the proposed KRRP Increment 1 Temporary Deviation, is to implement a new operational plan that incorporates a portion of the additional storage capacity in Lakes Kissimmee, Hatchineha and Cypress (KCH) achieved through real estate acquisition, and the increased flow capacity for the S-65 structure at the outlet of Lake Kissimmee.
The alternative formulation and evaluation process was a multi-agency, collaborative effort between the Corps and the Kissimmee River Restoration Evaluation Program, which includes scientists from the SFWMD, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. Four different alternatives were considered including the No Action Alternative, which represents the continuation of existing conditions. Each of the alternative plans present different operational strategies for Lakes KCH. Alternatives were modeled using historical lake stage and flow records to compute net inflows, simulate prescribed operations and output simulated daily stages and flows for the rainfall period 1965-2018. Performance metrics were used to evaluate the alternative plans.
The draft EA and proposed FONSI evaluate the effects of the four proposed Increment 1 alternatives and identifies a Preferred Alternative (Alternative A’). Alternative A’ sets a dry season Zone A line at 51.5 feet NGVD29. The full HRS is not being evaluated at this time. The approach to formulating Alternative A’ was to start from the authorized HRS and shift the Zone A boundary line downward to levels appropriate for Increment 1. Consequently, Alternative A’ mimics the shape of the Headwaters Regulation Schedule, but with the Zone A line lowered by one foot. Zone B operations for Alternative A’ are similar to, but slightly different from anticipated Zone B operations under the Interim Regulation Schedule, with the changes reflecting the schedule lines. The proposed Federal action implementing the KRRP Increment 1 Temporary Deviation will allow for additional progress toward hydrologic restoration of the Kissimmee River by providing more water storage in KCH for flow into the Kissimmee River to better approximate previous patterns of inundation of the river’s floodplain. The increase in seasonal water storage within KCH will also benefit KCH littoral zone habitat due to higher water levels.
Please submit public comments to Richard.A.Skinker@usace.army.mil at your earliest convenience, and not later than March 7, 2023, and include “KRRP Inc 1 Temp Deviation Comments” in the subject line of emailed comments.
Additional information on the Kissimmee River Restoration Project is available at: www.saj.usace.army.mil/KRR
Kissimmee River Restoration Fact Sheet: https://usace.contentdm.oclc.org/utils/getfile/collection/p16021coll11/id/5452
USACE celebrates the completion of construction for the Kissimmee River Restoration Project: https://www.saj.usace.army.mil/Media/News-Releases/Article/2712959/usace-celebrates-the-completion-of-construction-for-the-kissimmee-river-restora/