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USACE seeks public comment for draft integrated letter report and Programmatic Environmental Assessment for federal participation in operating watercraft inspection stations within the South Platte River Basin

USACE Omaha District
Published April 3, 2023

A draft integrated letter report and programmatic environmental assessment has been developed to determine the economic and environmental impacts of federal participation in state-managed watercraft inspection programs within the states of Colorado, Wyoming and Nebraska to protect the South Platte River Basin. Comments on the draft Programmatic EA will be accepted during the public review period from April 3-17, 2023.

The existing watercraft inspection programs are managed collaboratively by the states of Colorado, Wyoming, and Nebraska, where watercraft are inspected for the presence of aquatic invasive species and decontaminated when detected. If approved, federal participation in the program would be cost-shared at 50 percent federal funding and 50 percent state funding with each of the participating states.

A regional strategy would be employed to identify locations that would provide the greatest likelihood of preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species into and out of waters of the United States within the South Platte River Basin. Several strategies that could be used include expanding the number of locations or hours of operation at existing inspection stations, adding canine detection capabilities, increasing public awareness, constructing site improvements, and augmenting existing monitoring and contingency and response planning efforts.

The public is encouraged to provide comments on the draft Programmatic EA that is available for viewing at https://usace.contentdm.oclc.org/digital/collection/p16021coll7/id/23435. Comments can be mailed to U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Omaha District; CENWO-PMA-C; ATTN: Clayton Ridenour, Watercraft Inspection EA; 1616 Capitol Avenue; Omaha, NE 68102-4901. Comments can also be emailed to: cenwo-planning@usace.army.mil. Comments must be postmarked or received no later than April 17, 2023.

The draft Programmatic EA was prepared in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969, as amended, the Council on Environmental Quality’s regulations for implementing NEPA (40 CFR 1500-1508), USACE regulations for implementing NEPA (33 CFR 325 and Engineering Regulation 200-2-2) and other applicable environmental laws and regulations.

Release no. 23-012