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ENB - Statewide Notices 6/6/2012

Public Notice

This notice announces the opportunity for commercial vessel operators, port operators, boat pumpout facility operators, sewage removal companies, and other stakeholders to provide information to New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYS DEC) regarding the adequacy of available pumpout facilities and other options for the removal of sewage from commercial vessels that use Great Lakes Waters (Lake Erie, Lake Ontario and the Saint Lawrence River). This information will be useful in the establishment of vessel waste No Discharge Zones (NDZs) in coastal waters of New York not already covered by NDZ designations. Comments and information regarding this solicitation will be accepted for 45 days, through June 22, 2012.

Background: Vessel waste NDZ designations are a key component of a larger strategy for protecting all coastal waters of New York State. A NDZ designation means that it is illegal for boaters to discharge on-board sewage into the designated waterbody. This includes treated sewage, as well as untreated sewage. Boaters must instead dispose of their sewage at pump-out stations.

Sewage from boats often contains harmful levels of pathogens and chemicals such as formaldehyde, phenols and chlorine, which harm water quality, pose a risk to people's health, and impair marine life and habitats. Federal law prohibits the discharge of untreated boat sewage within most navigable waters of the United States. To take water quality protection a step further, NYS DEC and the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) are working to prohibit sewage discharges to New York's coastal waters and navigable connecting waterways - which are not covered by the federal law - by designating them as No Discharge Zones (NDZs).

In 2010, NYS DEC and USEPA announced a joint initiative to establish NDZs in the remaining coastal waters and navigable connecting waterways of New York State. Since then, NDZ designations have been established for the New York State Canal Systems, the New York portion of Long Island Sound, Jamaica Bay, and the New York portion of Lake Ontario. The remaining coastal waters without NDZs are Lake Erie, Saint Lawrence River, New York Harbor waters, and easternmost Long Island South Shore.

Approval of petitions for these remaining waters would complete the goal of NDZs in all coastal New York waterways.

Information Requested: Establishing an NDZ requires a determination that adequate facilities for the safe and sanitary removal and treatment of sewage from all vessels (both recreational and commercial) are reasonably available for proposed NDZ waters. While information regarding pumpout facilities for recreational vessel is generally available, similar information for commercial vessels can be more difficult to come by.

Therefore, NYS DEC is soliciting additional information from commercial vessel operators, port operators, boat pumpout facility operators, sewage removal companies, and other stakeholders regarding the adequacy of available pumpout facilities and other options for the removal of sewage from commercial vessels that use the New York State portions of Lake Erie and the St. Lawrence River. (Information regarding commercial vessels in New York Harbor will also be accepted, however efforts to establish an NDZ in New York Harbor will be coordinated through the NY-NJ Harbor and Estuary Program.)

Specifically of interest to NYS DEC:

How many commercial vessels that would require pumpout facilities operate in the New York State portion of Lake Erie and the St. Lawrence River? How much sewage do these vessels typically hold, individually and collectively? How often do these vessels need to discharge sewage, and where do they currently do so What are the most common routes of travel in these waters and where do these vessels typically dock? Are sewage pumpout trucks generally available to serve commercial vessels on the New York side of Lake Erie and the St. Lawrence River and if so, how many such services are there? Are sewage pumpout boats available to serve commercial vessels in those waters, and if so how many of them and where do they operate? Regarding the pumpout trucks and vessels, above, what is their sewage holding capacity, how long does it take to pump the full capacity of each vehicle, and how much does the service cost? Are there any constraints on the ability for commercial vessels in these waters to use either pumpout trucks or pumpout boats to discharge their sewage? If so, please explain.

Please forward responses to this solicitation to: Jeff Myers, NYS DEC - Division of Water, Bureau of Watershed Assessment and Management, 625 Broadway, 4th Floor, Albany, NY 12233-3502, E-mail: jamyers@gw.dec.state.ny.us.

Additional information regarding vessel waste NDZs in New York State can be found on the NYS DEC website at: http://www.dec.ny.gov/chemical/73875.html.

Note that this is not a formal public notice and comment, and any findings developed through this process, as well as any proposed determination by USEPA on NYS DEC petitions to establish future NDZs, will be subject to formal public notice and comment before being made final, and the failure to submit information in response to this request will not preclude any interested party from commenting on any findings contained in a proposed determination.

Contact: Jeff Myers, NYS DEC - Division of Water, Bureau of Watershed Assessment and Management, 625 Broadway, 4th Floor, Albany, NY 12233-3502, Phone: (518) 402-8251, E-mail: jamyers@gw.dec.state.ny.us.


Final Amendment NO. 2 to the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund
Federal Fiscal Year (FFY) 2012 Intended Use Plan

Draft Amendment #2 to the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund Intended Use Plan issued October 1, 2011 was published in the May 16, 2012 issue of the Environmental Notice Bulletin. The comment period for the Draft Amendment #2 closed on May 30, 2012. The New York State Department of Health (NYS DOH) received no public comments pertaining to this amendment. Therefore, the amendment to the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund Intended Use Plan is final as shown below:

FFY 2012 Readiness List Project Amendments:

Pomfret (T), Chautauqua County SRF# 17637- Increase IUP listed cost to $4,682,100
Sandy Creek (T), Oswego County SRF# 17625- Increase IUP listed cost to $13,995,000

NYS DOH has determined that the project amendments are necessary, reasonable and consistent with the original project concept and the scope of the projects has not changed. The cost increases are the result of higher than expected bids, additional required work, revised engineering estimates or combinations thereof. The project priority rankings above the funding line were not altered and the project amendments will not adversely affect any project on the IUP Project Readiness List above the funding line. Except for the above-noted changes, there are no other changes to projects listed on the Project Readiness List or to the project priority rankings.

Contact:

Michael Montysko
NYS DOH - Bureau of Water Supply Protection
Flanigan Square, 547 River Street, Room 400
Troy, New York 12180-2216
Phone: (518) 402-7650


Negative Declaration

Albany, Columbia, Dutchess, Green; Orange, Putnam, Rensselaer, Rockland, Ulster, Westchester Counties - The New York State Department of State, as lead agency, has determined that that the proposed Hudson River Significant Coastal Fish and Wildlife Habitat Modifications and Designations will not have a significant adverse environmental impact. The current availability of advanced technologies have allowed for an improved and more detailed understanding of the ecological and natural resource importance and significance of designated habitat areas in the Hudson River Estuary and this has allowed for new scientific information (e.g. species documentation, submerged aquatic vegetation data, bathymetry data) to become available since the original habitat designations in 1987. Moreover, since the original designation of 35 Hudson River Significant Coastal Fish and Wildlife Habitats in 1987, the physical conditions of a number of previously designated habitats have changed, given the dynamic natural environment of the Hudson River. Based on those changes and new habitat data and information collected since that time, the New York State Department of State is proposing to modify the written content of the 35 previously designated Significant Coastal Fish and Wildlife Habitats narratives, combining 4 of the originally designated habitats into 2 habitats, modifying 13 of the habitat boundaries, and adding 7 new habitats for a total of 40 proposed habitats. This action is proposed to more fully implement New York State Coastal Policy 7 and other relevant coastal policies in the Coastal Management Program as implemented by Article 42 of the Executive Law and 19 NYCRR Parts 600-603. The project is located on the shores and waters of the Hudson River, New York, from the Troy dam south.

Contact: Fred Anders, New York State Department of State, 99 Washington Ave, Suite 1010, Albany, NY 12231, Phone: (518) 474.6000.


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