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Amendments as a Result of 2020 General Assembly Actions
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9VAC25-210-10

Part I
VWP Permit Program Definitions, Exclusions, Prohibitions and Requirements

9VAC25-210-10. Definitions.

A. Definitions specific to surface water withdrawals are in 9VAC25-210-300.

B. Unless a different meaning is required by the context, the following terms as used in this chapter shall have the following meanings:

"Adjacent" means bordering, contiguous, or neighboring wetlands separated from other surface water by man-made dikes or barriers, natural river berms, sand dunes, and the like.

"Administratively withdrawn" means a decision by the board that permanently discontinues the review or processing of a VWP permit application or request to modify a VWP permit.

"Applicant" means a person applying for a VWP individual permit or for coverage under a VWP general permit.

"Aquatic environment" means surface waters and the habitat they provide, including both plant and animal communities.

"Avoidance" means not taking or modifying a proposed action or parts of an action so that there is no adverse impact to the aquatic environment.

"Beneficial use" means both instream and offstream uses. Instream beneficial uses include the protection of fish and wildlife resources and habitat, maintenance of waste assimilation, recreation, navigation, and cultural and aesthetic values. The preservation of instream flows for purposes of the protection of navigation, maintenance of waste assimilation capacity, the protection of fish and wildlife resources and habitat, recreation, and cultural and aesthetic values is an instream beneficial use of Virginia's waters. Offstream beneficial uses include domestic uses (including public water supply), agricultural uses, electric power generation, commercial uses, and industrial uses.

"Best management practices" or "BMPs" means a schedule of activities, prohibition of practices, maintenance procedures, and other management practices that prevent or reduce the pollution of surface waters.

"Board" means the State Water Control Board.

"Channelization" means the alteration of a stream channel by widening, deepening, straightening, cleaning, or paving certain areas.

"Compensation" or "compensatory mitigation" means (i) the restoration (reestablishment or rehabilitation), establishment (creation), enhancement, or in certain circumstances preservation of aquatic resources or (ii) in certain circumstances an out-of-kind measure having a water quality, habitat, or other desirable benefit for the purposes of offsetting unavoidable adverse impacts to aquatic resources that remain after all appropriate and practicable avoidance and minimization has been achieved.

"Construction site" means any site where land-disturbing activity is conducted or physically located for the purpose of erecting buildings, roads, or other discrete structures, including on-site or off-site areas used for dependent, support facilities, such as quarries, mines, or temporary stormwater management or erosion control structures.

"Conversion" means those impacts to surface waters that permanently change an existing wetland or aquatic resource type to a different wetland or aquatic resource type.

"Coverage" means authorization to conduct a project in accordance with a VWP general permit.

"Cowardin classification" or "Cowardin classification method," unless otherwise specified in this chapter, means the waters classification system in Classification of Wetlands and Deepwater Habitats of the United States (Cowardin, Lewis M. II, et al., U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, December 1979, Reprinted 1992).

"Creation" means the establishment of a wetland or other aquatic resource where one did not formerly exist.

"Cross-sectional drawing" means a scaled graph or plot that represents the plane made by cutting across an object at right angles to its length. Objects may include a surface water body or a portion of it, a man-made channel, an above-ground structure, a below-ground structure, a geographical feature, or the ground surface itself.

"Department" or "DEQ" means the Department of Environmental Quality.

"Director" means the Director of the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) or an authorized representative.

"Discharge" means, when used without qualification, a discharge of a pollutant, or any addition of any pollutant or combination of pollutants, to state waters.

"Draft VWP permit" means a document indicating the board's tentative decision relative to a VWP permit action.

"Draining" means human-induced activities such as ditching, excavation, installation of tile drains, hydrologic modification by surface water runoff diversion, pumping water from wells, or similar activities such that the activities have the effect of artificially dewatering the wetland or altering its hydroperiod.

"Dredged material" means material that is excavated or dredged from surface waters.

"Dredging" means a form of excavation in which material is removed or relocated from beneath surface waters.

"Ecologically and environmentally preferable" means capable of providing a higher likelihood than alternative proposals of replacing existing wetland acreage and functions, stream functions, water quality, and fish and wildlife resources.

"Emergent wetland" means a class of wetlands dominated by erect, rooted, herbaceous plants growing in water or on a substrate, excluding mosses and lichens. This vegetation is present for most of the growing season in most years and is usually dominated by perennial plants.

"Enhancement" means activities conducted in existing wetlands or other portions of the aquatic environment that increase one or more aquatic functions.

"Excavate" or "excavation" means ditching, dredging, or mechanized removal of earth, soil, or rock.

"Fill" means replacing portions of surface water with upland, or raising the bottom elevation of a surface water for any purpose, by placement of any pollutant or material including rock, sand, earth, and man-made materials and debris.

"Fill material" means any pollutant that replaces portions of surface water with dry land or that raises the bottom elevation of a surface water for any purpose.

"Forested wetland" means a class of wetlands dominated by woody vegetation that is approximately 20 feet (six meters) tall or taller and three inches (7.6 centimeters) or larger in diameter at breast height (DBH). These areas typically possess an overstory of trees, an understory of trees or shrubs, and an herbaceous layer.

"Hydrologic regime" means the entire state of water movement in a given area. It is a function of the climate and includes the phenomena by which water first occurs as atmospheric water vapor, passes into a liquid or solid form, falls as precipitation, moves along or into the ground surface, and returns to the atmosphere as vapor by means of evaporation and transpiration.

"Impacts" means results caused by those activities specified in § 62.1-44.15:20 A of the Code of Virginia.

"Impairment" means the damage, loss, or degradation of the acreage or functions of wetlands or the functions of state waters.

"Independent utility" means a test to determine what constitutes a single and complete project. A project is considered to have independent utility if it would be constructed absent the construction of other projects in the project area. Portions of a phased development project that depend upon other phases of the project do not have independent utility. Portions of a phased development project that would be constructed even if the other phases are not built can be considered as separate single complete projects with independent public and economic utility.

"In-lieu fee program" means a program operated by a nonprofit organization or governmental agency that receives moneys from persons impacting wetlands or streams pursuant to an authorized, permitted activity and that expends the moneys received to provide consolidated compensatory mitigation for permitted wetland or stream impacts.

"Isolated wetlands of minimal ecological value" means those wetlands that (i) do not have a surface water connection to other state waters, (ii) are less than one-tenth of an acre (0.10 acre or 4,356 square feet) in size, (iii) are not located in a Federal Emergency Management Agency designated 100-year floodplain, (iv) are not identified by the Virginia Natural Heritage Program as a rare or state significant natural community, (v) are not forested, and (vi) do not contain listed federal or state threatened or endangered species.

"Joint Permit Application" or "JPA" means an application form that is used to apply for permits from the Norfolk District Army Corps of Engineers, the Virginia Marine Resources Commission, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, and local wetland boards for work in waters of the United States and in surface waters of Virginia.

"Law" means the State Water Control Law of Virginia.

"Legal name" means the full legal name of an individual, business, or other organization. For an individual, legal name means the first name, middle initial, last name, and suffix. For an entity authorized to do business in Virginia, the legal name means the exact name set forth in the entity's articles of incorporation, organization or trust, or formation agreement, as applicable.

"Minimization" means lessening impacts by reducing the degree or magnitude of the proposed action and its implementation.

"Mitigation" means sequentially avoiding and minimizing impacts to the maximum extent practicable, and then compensating for remaining unavoidable impacts of a proposed action.

"Mitigation bank" means a site providing off-site, consolidated compensatory mitigation that is developed and approved in accordance with all applicable federal and state laws or regulations for the establishment, use, and operation of mitigation banks and is operating under a signed banking agreement.

"Mitigation banking" means compensating for unavoidable wetland or stream losses in advance of development actions through the sale or purchase of credits from a mitigation bank.

"Nationwide permit" means a general permit issued by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) under 33 CFR Part 330 and, except where suspended by individual USACE Corps Districts, applicable nationwide.

"Nontidal wetland" means those wetlands other than tidal wetlands that are inundated or saturated by surface water or groundwater at a frequency and duration sufficient to support, and that under normal circumstances do support, a prevalence of vegetation typically adapted for life in saturated soil conditions, as defined by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency pursuant to § 404 of the federal Clean Water Act in 40 CFR 230.3(t). Wetlands generally include swamps, marshes, bogs, and similar areas.

"Normal agricultural activities" means those activities defined as an agricultural operation in § 3.2-300 of the Code of Virginia and any activity that is conducted as part of or in furtherance of such agricultural operation but shall not include any activity for which a permit would have been required as of January 1, 1997, under 33 USC § 1344 or any regulations promulgated pursuant thereto.

"Normal residential gardening and lawn and landscape maintenance" means ongoing noncommercial residential activities conducted by or on behalf of an individual occupant, including mowing; planting; fertilizing; mulching; tilling; vegetation removal by hand or by hand tools; and placement of decorative stone, fencing, and play equipment. Other appurtenant noncommercial activities, provided that they do not result in the conversion of a wetland to upland or to a different wetland type, may also be included.

"Normal silvicultural activities" means any silvicultural activity as defined in § 10.1-1181.1 of the Code of Virginia, and any activity that is conducted as part of or in furtherance of such silvicultural activity but shall not include any activity for which a permit would have been required as of January 1, 1997, under 33 USC § 1344 or any regulations promulgated pursuant thereto.

"Notice of project completion" means a statement submitted by the permittee or authorized agent that the authorized activities and any required compensatory mitigation have been completed.

"Open water" means an area that, during a year with normal patterns of precipitation, has standing water for sufficient duration to establish an ordinary high water mark. The term "open water" includes lakes and ponds but does not include ephemeral waters, stream beds, or wetlands.

"Ordinary high water" or "ordinary high water mark" means that line on the shore established by the fluctuations of water and indicated by physical characteristics such as a clear, natural line impressed on the bank; shelving; changes in the character of soil; destruction of terrestrial vegetation; the presence of litter and debris; or other appropriate means that consider the characteristics of the surrounding areas.

"Out-of-kind compensatory mitigation" or "out-of-kind mitigation" means a measure that does not replace the same type of wetland or surface water as was impacted but does replace lost wetland or surface water functions or provide a water quality, habitat, or other desirable benefit.

"Perennial stream" means a well-defined channel that contains water year round during a year of normal rainfall. Generally, the water table is located above the stream bed for most of the year and groundwater is the primary source for stream flow. A perennial stream exhibits the typical biological, hydrological, and physical characteristics commonly associated with the continuous conveyance of water.

"Permanent flooding or impounding" means a permanent increase in the duration or depth of standing water on a land surface, such as from a dam. Permanent increases in duration or depth of standing water that result from extended-detention basins and enhanced extended-detention basins, when designed, constructed, and maintained to function in accordance with Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) standards for such facilities (Virginia Stormwater Management Handbook, First Edition, 1999, Volume 1, Chapter 3), or when designed in accordance with local standards that, at a minimum, meet the DCR standards, are not considered to be permanent flooding and impounding.

"Permanent impacts" means those impacts to surface waters, including wetlands, that cause a permanent alteration of the physical, chemical, or biological properties of the surface waters or of the acreage or functions of a wetland.

"Permittee" means the person who holds a VWP individual or general permit.

"Permittee-responsible compensatory mitigation" or "permittee-responsible mitigation" means compensation or compensatory mitigation, as defined in this section, that is undertaken by the permittee, or an authorized agent or contractor, for which the permittee retains full responsibility.

"Person" means individual, corporation, partnership, association, governmental body, municipal corporation, or any other legal entity.

"Phased development" means more than one project proposed for a single piece of property or an assemblage of contiguous properties under consideration for development by the same person, or by related persons, that will begin and be completed at different times. Depending on the relationship between the projects, a phased development may be considered a single and complete project or each project may be considered a single and complete project if each project has independent utility, as defined in this section.

"Plan view drawing" means a scaled graph or plot that represents the view of an object as projected onto orthogonal planes. Objects may include structures, contours, or boundaries.

"Pollutant" means any substance, radioactive material, or heat that causes or contributes to or may cause or contribute to pollution.

"Pollution" means such alteration of the physical, chemical, or biological properties of any state waters as will or is likely to create a nuisance or render such waters (i) harmful or detrimental or injurious to the public health, safety, or welfare or to the health of animals, fish, or aquatic life; (ii) unsuitable with reasonable treatment for use as present or possible future sources of public water supply; or (iii) unsuitable for recreational, commercial, industrial, agricultural, or other reasonable uses; provided that (a) an alteration of the physical, chemical, or biological property of state waters, or a discharge or deposit of sewage, industrial wastes or other wastes to state waters by any owner which by itself is not sufficient to cause pollution, but which, in combination with such alteration of or discharge or deposit to state waters by other owners is sufficient to cause pollution; (b) the discharge of untreated sewage by any owner into state waters; and (c) contributing to the contravention of standards of water quality duly established by the board, are "pollution" for the terms and purposes of this chapter.

"Practicable" means available and capable of being done after taking into consideration cost, existing technology, and logistics in light of overall project purposes.

"Preservation" means the protection of resources in perpetuity through the implementation of appropriate legal and physical mechanisms.

"Profile drawing" means a scaled graph or plot that represents the side view of an object. Objects may include a surface water body or a portion of it, a man-made channel, an above-ground structure, a below-ground structure, a geographical feature, or the ground surface itself.

"Public hearing" means a fact finding proceeding held to afford interested persons an opportunity to submit factual data, views, and comments to the board pursuant to § 62.1-44.15:02 of the Code of Virginia.

"Regional permit" means a general permit issued by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers under 33 CFR Part 330 and applicable within a specified geographic area.

"Restoration" means the reestablishment of a wetland or other aquatic resource in an area where it previously existed. Wetland restoration means the reestablishment of wetland hydrology and vegetation in an area where a wetland previously existed. Stream restoration means the process of converting an unstable, altered, or degraded stream corridor, including adjacent areas and floodplains, to its natural conditions.

"Riprap" means a layer of nonerodible material such as stone or chunks of concrete.

"Section 401" means § 401 of the Clean Water Act, or 33 USC § 1341, as amended in 1987.

"Scrub-shrub wetland" means a class of wetlands dominated by woody vegetation, excluding woody vines, approximately three to 20 feet (one to six meters) tall. The species include true shrubs, young trees, and trees or shrubs that are small or stunted because of environmental conditions.

"Significant alteration or degradation of existing wetland acreage or function" means human-induced activities that cause either a diminution of the areal extent of the existing wetland or cause a change in wetland community type resulting in the loss or more than minimal degradation of its existing ecological functions.

"Single and complete project" means the total project proposed or accomplished by a person, which also has independent utility as defined in this section. For linear projects, the single and complete project (e.g., a single and complete crossing) will apply to each crossing of a separate surface water (e.g., a single water body) and to multiple crossings of the same water body at separate and distinct locations. Phases of a project that have independent utility may each be considered single and complete.

"State waters" means all water, on the surface and under the ground, wholly or partially within or bordering the Commonwealth or within its jurisdiction, including wetlands.

"Stream bed" or "stream channel" means the substrate of a stream, as measured between the ordinary high water mark along each side of a stream. The substrate may consist of organic matter, bedrock, or inorganic particles that range in size from clay to boulders, or a combination of both. Areas contiguous to the stream bed, but outside of the ordinary high water mark along each side of a stream, are not considered part of the stream bed.

"Surface water" means all state waters that are not groundwater as groundwater is defined in § 62.1-255 of the Code of Virginia.

"Suspend" or "suspension" means a decision by the board that stops the review or processing of a permit application or request to modify a permit or permit coverage until such time that information requested by the board is provided, reviewed, and deemed adequate.

"Temporal loss" means the time lag between the loss of aquatic resource functions caused by the impacts and the replacement of aquatic resource functions by compensatory mitigation.

"Temporary impacts" means impacts to wetlands or other surface waters that do not cause a permanent alteration of the physical, chemical, or biological properties of surface waters or the permanent alteration or degradation of existing wetland acreage or functions. Temporary impacts include activities in which the impact area is restored to its preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable, such that previous wetland acreage and functions or surface water functions are restored.

"Tidal wetland" means vegetated and nonvegetated wetlands as defined in § 28.2-1300 of the Code of Virginia.

"Toxic pollutant" means any agent or material including those listed under § 307(a) of the Water Pollution Prevention and Control Act (33 USC § 1317(a)), which after discharge will, on the basis of available information, cause toxicity. Toxicity means the inherent potential or capacity of a material to cause adverse effects in a living organism, including acute or chronic effects to aquatic life, detrimental effects on human health, or other adverse environmental effects.

"Undesirable plant species" means any species that invades, naturally colonizes, or otherwise dominates a compensatory mitigation site or mitigation bank, such that it causes or contributes to the failure of the vegetative success criteria for a particular compensatory mitigation site, mitigation bank, or in-lieu fee program project, or it otherwise prohibits the restoration of the same vegetation cover type that was originally present.

"VWP general permit" means the general permit text, terms, requirements, and conditions set forth in a regulation that constitutes a VWP permit authorizing a specified category of activities.

"VWP permit" means an individual or general permit issued by the board under § 62.1-44.15:20 of the Code of Virginia that authorizes activities otherwise unlawful under § 62.1-44.5 of the Code of Virginia or otherwise serves as the Commonwealth of Virginia's § 401 certification. For any applicant to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for a certificate of public convenience and necessity pursuant to § 7c of the federal Natural Gas Act (15 USC § 717f(c)) to construct any natural gas transmission pipeline greater than 36 inches inside diameter, issuance of an individual VWP permit pursuant to this chapter and a certification issued pursuant to Article 2.6 (§ 62.1-44.15:80 et seq.) of the State Water Control Law shall together constitute the certification required under § 401 of the federal Clean Water Act.

"Water quality standards" means water quality standards adopted by the board and approved by the administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency under § 303 of the Clean Water Act as defined in 9VAC25-260-5.

"Watershed approach" means an analytical process for making compensatory mitigation decisions that support the sustainability or improvement of aquatic resources in a watershed and that ensures authorized impacts and mitigation have been considered on a watershed scale.

"Wetlands" means those areas that are inundated or saturated by surface water or groundwater at a frequency and duration sufficient to support, and that under normal circumstances do support, a prevalence of vegetation typically adapted for life in saturated soil conditions. Wetlands generally include swamps, marshes, bogs, and similar areas.

9VAC25-210-80

9VAC25-210-80. Application for a VWP permit.

A. Application for a VWP Permit. Any person who is required to obtain a VWP permit, except those persons applying for an emergency VWP permit for a public water supply emergency, shall submit a complete VWP permit application to the Department of Environmental Quality through the most current Joint Permit Application procedures established within each type of Joint Permit Application. The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) may use its Interagency Coordination Meeting (IACM) process for submitting JPAs. There shall be no commencement of any activity subject to this chapter prior to the issuance of a VWP permit or granting VWP general permit coverage.

B. Informational requirements for all VWP individual permit applications are identified in this subsection with the exception of applications for emergency VWP permits to address a public water supply emergency, for which the information required in 9VAC25-210-340 C shall be submitted. In addition to the information in this subsection, applications involving a surface water withdrawal or a Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) license or relicense associated with a surface water withdrawal shall also submit the information required in 9VAC25-210-340 B.

1. A complete application for a VWP individual permit, at a minimum, consists of the following information, if applicable to the project:

a. The applicant's legal name, mailing address, telephone number, and if applicable, electronic mail address and fax number.

b. If different from applicant, legal name, mailing address, telephone number, and if applicable, electronic mail address and fax number of property owner.

c. If applicable, the authorized agent's name, mailing address, telephone number, and if applicable, fax number and electronic mail address.

d. Project name and proposed project schedule. This schedule will be used to determine the VWP permit term.

e. The following information for the project site location, and any related permittee-responsible compensatory mitigation site:

(1) The physical street address, nearest street, or nearest route number; city or county; zip code; and if applicable, parcel number of the site or sites.

(2) Name of the impacted water body or water bodies, or receiving waters, as applicable, at the site or sites.

(3) The latitude and longitude to the nearest second at the center of the site or sites.

(4) The fourth order subbasin, as defined by the hydrologic unit boundaries of the National Watershed Boundary Dataset, for the site or sites.

(5) A detailed map depicting the location of the site or sites, including the project boundary and existing preservation areas on the site or sites. The map (e.g., a U.S. Geologic Survey topographic quadrangle map) should be of sufficient detail to easily locate the site or sites for inspection.

f. A narrative description of the project, including project purpose and need.

g. An alternatives analysis for the proposed project detailing the specific on-site and off-site measures taken during project design and development to first avoid and then minimize impacts to surface waters to the maximum extent practicable in accordance with the Guidelines for Specification of Disposal Sites for Dredged or Fill Material, 40 CFR Part 230. Avoidance and minimization includes, but is not limited to, the specific on-site and off-site measures taken to reduce the size, scope, configuration, or density of the proposed project, including review of alternative sites where required for the project, which would avoid or result in less adverse impact to surface waters, and documentation demonstrating the reason the applicant determined less damaging alternatives are not practicable. The analysis shall demonstrate to the satisfaction of the board that avoidance and minimization opportunities have been identified and measures have been applied to the proposed activity such that the proposed activity in terms of impacts to state waters and fish and wildlife resources is the least environmentally damaging practicable alternative.

h. A narrative description of all impacts proposed to surface waters, including the type of activity to be conducted in surface waters and any physical alteration to surface waters. Surface water impacts shall be identified as follows:

(1) Wetland impacts identified according to their Cowardin classification (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested); and for each classification, the individual impacts quantified in square feet to the nearest whole number, cumulatively summed in square feet, and then the sum converted to acres and rounded to two decimal places using commonly accepted arithmetic principles of rounding.

(2) Individual stream impacts (i) quantified by length in linear feet to the nearest whole number and by average width in feet to the nearest whole number; (ii) quantified in square feet to the nearest whole number; and (iii) when compensatory mitigation is required, the impacts identified according to the assessed type using the Unified Stream Methodology.

(3) Open water impacts identified according to type; and for each type, the individual impacts quantified in square feet to the nearest whole number, cumulatively summed in square feet, and then the sum converted to acres and rounded to two decimal places using commonly accepted arithmetic principles of rounding.

(4) A copy of the approved jurisdictional determination when available, or when unavailable, (i) the preliminary jurisdictional determination from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), or DEQ or (ii) other correspondence from the USACE, NRCS, or DEQ indicating approval of the boundary of applicable jurisdictional surface waters, including wetlands data sheets if applicable.

(5) A delineation map that (i) depicts the geographic area or areas of all surface water boundaries delineated in accordance with 9VAC25-210-45 and confirmed in accordance with the jurisdictional determination process; (ii) identifies such areas in accordance with subdivisions 1 h (1), 1 h (2), and 1 h (3) of this subsection; and (iii) quantifies and identifies any other surface waters according to their Cowardin classification (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested) or similar terminology.

i. Plan view drawing or drawings of the project site sufficient to assess the project, including at a minimum the following:

(1) North arrow, graphic scale, and existing and proposed topographic or bathymetric contours.

(2) Limits of proposed impacts to surface waters.

(3) Location of all existing and proposed structures.

(4) All delineated wetlands and all jurisdictional surface waters on the site, including the Cowardin classification (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested) for those surface waters and waterway name, if designated; ebb and flood or direction of flow; ordinary high water mark in nontidal areas; tidal wetlands boundary; and mean low water and mean high water lines in tidal areas.

(5) The limits of Chesapeake Bay Resource Protection Areas (RPAs) as field-verified by the applicant, and if available, the limits as approved by the locality in which the project site is located, unless the proposed use is exempt from the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Area Designation and Management Regulations (9VAC25-830).

(6) The limits of any areas that are under a deed restriction, conservation easement, restrictive covenant, or other land use protective instrument (i.e., protected areas).

j. Cross-sectional and profile drawing or drawings. Cross-sectional drawing or drawings of each proposed impact area includes at a minimum a graphic scale, existing structures, existing and proposed elevations, limits of surface water areas, ebb and flood or direction of flow (if applicable), ordinary high water mark in nontidal areas, tidal wetland boundary, mean low water and mean high water lines in tidal areas, impact limits, and location of all existing and proposed structures. Profile drawing or drawings with this information may be required on a case-by-case basis to demonstrate minimization of impacts. Any application that proposes piping or culverting stream flows shall provide a longitudinal profile of the pipe or culvert position and stream bed thalweg, or shall provide spot elevations of the stream thalweg at the beginning and end of the pipe or culvert, extending to a minimum of 10 feet beyond the limits of the proposed impact.

k. Materials assessment. Upon request by the board, the applicant shall provide evidence or certification that the material is free from toxic contaminants prior to disposal or that the dredging activity will not cause or contribute to a violation of water quality standards during dredging. The applicant may be required to conduct grain size and composition analyses, tests for specific parameters or chemical constituents, or elutriate tests on the dredge material.

l. An assessment of potential impacts to federal and state listed threatened or endangered species, including any correspondence or documentation from federal or state resource agencies addressing potential impacts to listed species.

m. A compensatory mitigation plan to achieve no net loss of wetland acreage and functions or stream functions and water quality benefits.

(1) If permittee-responsible compensation is proposed for wetland impacts, a conceptual wetland compensatory mitigation plan shall be submitted in order for an application to be deemed complete and shall include at a minimum (i) the goals and objectives in terms of replacement of wetland acreage and functions; (ii) a detailed location map including latitude and longitude to the nearest second and the fourth order subbasin, as defined by the hydrologic unit boundaries of the National Watershed Boundary Dataset, at the center of the site; (iii) a description of the surrounding land use; (iv) a hydrologic analysis including a draft water budget for nontidal areas based on expected monthly inputs and outputs that will project water level elevations for a typical year, a dry year, and a wet year; (v) groundwater elevation data, if available, or the proposed location of groundwater monitoring wells to collect these data; (vi) wetland delineation confirmation, data sheets, and maps for existing surface water areas on the proposed site or sites; (vii) a conceptual grading plan; (viii) a conceptual planting scheme including suggested plant species and zonation of each vegetation type proposed; (ix) a description of existing soils including general information on both topsoil and subsoil conditions, permeability, and the need for soil amendments; (x) a draft design of water control structures; (xi) inclusion of buffer areas; (xii) a description of any structures and features necessary for the success of the site; (xiii) the schedule for compensatory mitigation site construction; and (xiv) measures for the control of undesirable species.

(2) If permittee-responsible compensation is proposed for stream impacts, a conceptual stream compensatory mitigation plan shall be submitted in order for an application to be deemed complete and shall include at a minimum (i) the goals and objectives in terms of water quality benefits and replacement of stream functions; (ii) a detailed location map including the latitude and longitude to the nearest second and the fourth order subbasin, as defined by the hydrologic unit boundaries of the National Watershed Boundary Dataset, at the center of the site; (iii) a description of the surrounding land use; (iv) the proposed stream segment restoration locations including plan view and cross-section drawings; (v) the stream deficiencies that need to be addressed; (vi) data obtained from a DEQ-approved, stream impact assessment methodology such as the Unified Stream Methodology; (vii) the proposed restoration measures to be employed including channel measurements, proposed design flows, types of instream structures, and conceptual planting scheme; (viii) reference stream data, if available; (ix) inclusion of buffer areas; (x) schedule for restoration activities; and (xi) measures for the control of undesirable species.

(3) For any permittee-responsible compensatory mitigation, the conceptual compensatory mitigation plan shall also include a draft of the intended protective mechanism or mechanisms, in accordance with 9VAC25-210-116 B 2, such as, but not limited to, a conservation easement held by a third party in accordance with the Virginia Conservation Easement Act (§ 10.1-1009 et seq. of the Code of Virginia) or the Virginia Open-Space Land Act (§ 10.1-1700 et seq. of the Code of Virginia), a duly recorded declaration of restrictive covenants, or other protective instrument. The draft intended protective mechanism shall contain the information in subdivisions (a), (b), and (c) of this subdivision B 1 m (3) or in lieu thereof shall describe the intended protective mechanism or mechanisms that contain or contains the information required as follows:

(a) A provision for access to the site;

(b) The following minimum restrictions: no ditching, land clearing, or discharge of dredge or fill material, and no activity in the area designated as compensatory mitigation area with the exception of maintenance; corrective action measures; or DEQ-approved activities described in the approved final compensatory mitigation plan or long-term management plan; and

(c) A long-term management plan that identifies a long-term steward and adequate financial assurances for long-term management in accordance with the current standard for mitigation banks and in-lieu fee program sites, except that financial assurances will not be necessary for permittee-responsible compensation provided by government agencies on government property. If approved by DEQ, permittee-responsible compensation on government property and long-term protection may be provided through federal facility management plans, integrated natural resources management plans, or other alternate management plans submitted by a government agency or public authority.

(4) Any compensatory mitigation plan proposing the purchase of mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program credits shall include the number and type of credits proposed to be purchased and documentation from the approved bank or in-lieu fee program sponsor of the availability of credits at the time of application.

n. A written description and a graphical depiction identifying all upland areas including buffers, wetlands, open water, other surface waters, and compensatory mitigation areas located within the proposed project boundary or permittee-responsible compensatory mitigation areas, that are under a deed restriction, conservation easement, restrictive covenant, or other land use protective instrument (i.e., protected areas). Such description and a graphical depiction shall include the nature of the prohibited activities within the protected areas and the limits of Chesapeake Bay Resource Protection Areas (RPAs) as field-verified by the applicant, and if available, the limits as approved by the locality in which the project site is located, unless the proposed use is exempt from the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Area Designation and Management Regulations (9VAC25-830), as additional state or local requirements may apply if the project is located within an RPA.

o. Signature page that has been signed, dated, and certified by the applicant in accordance with 9VAC25-210-100. If the applicant is a business or other organization, the signature must be made by an individual with the authority to bind the business or organization, and the title of the signatory must be provided. The application signature page, either on the copy submitted to the Virginia Marine Resources Commission or to DEQ, must have an original signature. Electronic submittals containing the original signature page, such as that contained in a scanned document file, are acceptable.

p. Permit application fee. The applicant will be notified by the board as to the appropriate fee for the project in accordance with 9VAC25-20. The board will continue to process the application, but the fee must be received prior to release of a draft VWP permit.

2. Reserved.

C. An analysis of the functions of wetlands proposed to be impacted may be required by DEQ. When required, the method selected for the analysis shall assess water quality or habitat metrics and shall be coordinated with DEQ in advance of conducting the analysis.

1. No analysis shall be required when:

a. Wetland impacts per each single and complete project total 1.00 acre or less; or

b. The proposed compensatory mitigation consists of purchasing mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program credits at standard mitigation ratios of 2:1 for forest, 1.5:1 for scrub-shrub, and 1:1 for emergent, or higher.

2. Analysis shall be required when wetland impacts per each single and complete project total 1.01 acres or more, and when any of the following applies:

a. The proposed compensatory mitigation consists of permittee-responsible compensatory mitigation, including water quality enhancements as replacement for wetlands; or

b. The proposed compensatory mitigation consists of purchasing mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program credits at less than the standard mitigation ratios of 2:1 for forest, 1.5:1 for scrub-shrub, and 1:1 for emergent.

D. Incomplete application.

1. Where an application for an individual permit or general permit coverage is not accepted as complete by the board within 15 days of receipt, the board shall require the submission of additional information from the applicant and may suspend processing of any application until such time as the applicant has supplied the requested information and the board considers the application complete. Where the applicant becomes aware that he omitted one or more relevant facts from a VWP permit application or submitted incorrect information in a VWP permit application or in any report to the board, the applicant shall immediately submit such facts or the correct information. A revised application with new information shall be deemed a new application for purpose of review but shall not require an additional notice or an additional permit application fee.

2. An incomplete permit application for an individual permit or general permit coverage may be administratively withdrawn from processing by the board for failure to provide the required information after 60 days from the date of the latest written information request made by the board. The board shall provide (i) notice to the applicant and (ii) an opportunity for an informal fact-finding proceeding when administratively withdrawing an incomplete application. Resubmittal of an application for the same or similar project, after such time that the original permit application was administratively withdrawn, shall require submittal of an additional permit application fee and may be subject to additional noticing requirements.

3. An applicant may request a suspension of application review by the board. A submission by the applicant making such a request shall not preclude the board from administratively withdrawing an incomplete application. Resubmittal of a permit application for the same or similar project, after such time that the original permit application was administratively withdrawn, shall require submittal of an additional permit application fee and may be subject to additional noticing requirements.

9VAC25-210-230

9VAC25-210-230. Denial of the VWP permit or variance request.

A. The board shall make a decision to tentatively deny the VWP permit or variance request if the requirements of this chapter are not met. Basis for denial include, but are not limited to, the following:

1. The project will result in violations of water quality standards or will impair the beneficial uses of state waters.

2. As a result of project implementation, shellfish waters would be condemned in accordance with 9VAC25-260.

3. The project that the applicant proposed fails to adequately avoid and minimize impacts to state waters to the maximum extent practicable.

4. The proposed compensatory mitigation plan is insufficient or unsatisfactory for the proposed impacts and fails to achieve no net loss of existing wetland acreage and function and no net loss of functions in all surface waters.

5. The Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Wildlife Resources indicates that natural or stockable trout waters would be permanently and negatively impacted by the proposed activity.

6. The proposed activity is prohibited by 9VAC25-210-50.

7. The effect of project impacts, together with other existing or proposed impacts to wetlands, will cause or contribute to a significant impairment of state waters or fish and wildlife resources.

8. Failure to submit the required permit fee in accordance with 9VAC25-210-80 B 1 g or 9VAC25-210-340 C 1 g.

9. The board determines that the applicant for an Emergency Virginia Water Protection Permit has not demonstrated that there is a substantial threat to public health and safety, and that normal Virginia Water Protection Permit procedures, including public comment provisions, should be followed.

B. The applicant shall be notified by letter of the board's preliminary decision to tentatively deny the VWP permit requested.

C. Should the applicant withdraw his application, no VWP permit or variance will be issued.

D. Should the applicant elect to proceed as originally proposed, the board may deny the application and advise the applicant pursuant to § 62.1-44.15:02 of the Code of Virginia of his right to a public hearing to consider the denial.

9VAC25-210-320

9VAC25-210-320. Preapplication procedures for new or expanded surface water withdrawals.

A. Preapplication review panel. At the request of a potential applicant for a surface water withdrawal proposing to the Department of Environmental Quality to withdraw 90 million gallons a month or greater, a preapplication review panel shall be convened prior to submission of a VWP application. The preapplication review panel shall assist potential applicants that are proposing surface water withdrawals with the early identification of issues related to the protection of beneficial instream and offstream uses of state waters and the identification of the affected stream reach. DEQ shall notify the Virginia Marine Resources Commission, the Virginia Institute of Marine Science, the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Wildlife Resources, the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, the Virginia Department of Health, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and other appropriate local, state, and federal agencies of the preapplication review panel request. These agencies shall participate to the extent practicable in the preapplication review panel by providing information and guidance on the potential natural resource impacts and regulatory implications of the options being considered by the applicant and shall provide comments within 60 days of the initial meeting of the preapplication panel.

B. Preapplication public notice. For new or expanded surface water withdrawals requiring an individual VWP permit and proposing to withdraw 90 million gallons a month or greater, a potential applicant shall provide information on the project, shall provide an opportunity for public comment on the proposed project, and shall assist in identifying public concerns or issues prior to filing a VWP individual permit application.

1. Except as provided in this subsection, the potential applicant shall provide for publication of notice once a week for two consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation serving the locality where the surface water withdrawal is proposed to be located.

2. If requested by any person, the potential applicant shall hold at least one public information meeting. Notice of any public information meeting held pursuant to this subsection shall be provided at least 14 days prior to the public information meeting date and shall be published in the same manner as required in subdivision 1 of this subsection. A potential applicant shall submit the notice to DEQ for posting on the DEQ website. At a minimum, any notice required by this subsection shall include:

a. A statement of the potential applicant's intent to apply for a VWP permit for a surface water withdrawal;

b. The proposed location of the surface water withdrawal;

c. Information on how the public may request a public information meeting or, in the alternative, the date, time, and location of the public information meeting;

d. The name, address, and telephone number of the potential applicant, or an authorized representative who can answer questions or receive comments on the proposed surface water withdrawal; and

e. A statement of how oral or written public comments will be used.

3. In accordance with the provisions of 9VAC25-780-50 C 11 and 9VAC25-780-150, a potential applicant shall not be required to publish public notice or provide an opportunity for a public information meeting if a public meeting has been held within two years prior to the submittal of an application for a VWP permit on a local or regional water supply plan, which includes the proposed project.

4. The potential applicant shall maintain a list of persons making comment and their addresses and shall make a good faith effort to notify commenters at the address provided by the commenter when the public notice for the draft VWP individual permit is available.

9VAC25-660-50

9VAC25-660-50. Notification.

A. Notification to the board will be required prior to commencing construction, as follows:

1. An application for coverage for proposed, permanent nontidal wetland or open water impacts greater than one-tenth acre or for proposed, permanent nontidal stream bed impacts greater than 300 linear feet shall include all information pursuant to 9VAC25-660-60 B. Compensatory mitigation may be required for all permanent impacts.

2. An application for coverage for proposed, permanent nontidal wetland or open water impacts up to one-tenth acre or for proposed, permanent nontidal stream bed impacts up to 300 linear feet shall be submitted in accordance with either subdivision 2 a or 2 b of this subsection:

a. For any proposed project in wetlands, open water, streams, or compensatory mitigation sites that are under a deed restriction, conservation easement, declaration of restrictive covenant, or other land use protective instrument (hereafter "protected areas"), when such restriction, easement, covenant, or instrument is the result of a federal or state permit action and is specific to activities in wetlands and compensatory mitigation sites, the application shall include all of the information required by 9VAC25-660-60 B. Compensatory mitigation may be required for all permanent impacts.

b. For all other projects, the application shall include the information required by subdivisions 1 through 7, 10, 11, 15, and 16 of 9VAC25-660-60 B and documentation that verifies the quantity and type of impacts. Compensatory mitigation may be required for all permanent impacts once the notification limits of one-tenth acre wetlands or open water, or 300 linear feet of stream bed, are exceeded, and if required, the application shall include the information in 9VAC25-660-60 B 12.

B. The Department of Environmental Quality-approved application forms shall serve as an application for a VWP permit or VWP general permit coverage.

C. The board will determine whether the proposed activity requires coordination with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, and the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Wildlife Resources regarding the presence of federal or state listed threatened and endangered species or designated critical habitat. Based upon consultation with these agencies, the board may deny application for coverage under this general permit. The applicant may also consult with these agencies prior to submitting an application. Species or habitat information that the applicant provides will assist the Department of Environmental Quality in reviewing and processing the application.

9VAC25-660-60

9VAC25-660-60. Application.

A. The applicant shall file a complete application in accordance with 9VAC25-660-50 and this section for coverage under this VWP general permit for impacts to nontidal wetlands or open water of less than one-half acre and up to 300 linear feet of nontidal stream bed.

B. A complete application for VWP general permit coverage, at a minimum, consists of the following information, if applicable to the project:

1. The applicant's legal name, mailing address, telephone number, and if applicable, electronic mail address and fax number.

2. If different from the applicant, legal name, mailing address, telephone number, and if applicable, electronic mail address and fax number of property owner.

3. If applicable, the authorized agent's name, mailing address, telephone number, and if applicable, fax number and electronic mail address.

4. The existing VWP general permit tracking number, if applicable.

5. Project name and proposed project schedule.

6. The following information for the project site location:

a. The physical street address, nearest street, or nearest route number; city or county; zip code; and if applicable, parcel number of the site or sites.

b. Name of the impacted water body or water bodies, or receiving waters, as applicable, at the site or sites.

c. The latitude and longitude to the nearest second at the center of the site or sites.

d. The fourth order subbasin, as defined by the hydrologic unit boundaries of the National Watershed Boundary Dataset, for the site or sites.

e. A detailed map depicting the location of the site or sites, including the project boundary and all existing preservation areas on the site or sites. The map (e.g., a U.S. Geologic Survey topographic quadrangle map) should be of sufficient detail to easily locate the site or sites for inspection.

7. A narrative description of the project, including project purpose and need.

8. Plan-view drawing or drawings of the project site sufficient to assess the project, including at a minimum the following:

a. North arrow, graphic scale, and existing and proposed topographic or bathymetric contours.

b. Limits of proposed impacts to surface waters.

c. Location of all existing and proposed structures.

d. All delineated wetlands and all jurisdictional surface waters on the site, including the Cowardin classification (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested) for those surface waters and waterway name, if designated; ebb and flood or direction of flow; and ordinary high water mark in nontidal areas.

e. The limits of Chesapeake Bay Resource Protection Areas (RPAs) as field-verified by the applicant, and if available, the limits as approved by the locality in which the project site is located, unless the proposed use is exempt from the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Area Designation and Management Regulations (9VAC25-830).

f. The limits of areas that are under a deed restriction, conservation easement, restrictive covenant, or other land use protective instrument (i.e., protected areas).

9. Cross-sectional and profile drawing or drawings. Cross-sectional drawing or drawings of each proposed impact area shall include at a minimum a graphic scale, existing structures, existing and proposed elevations, limits of surface water areas, ebb and flood or direction of flow (if applicable), ordinary high water mark in nontidal areas, impact limits, and location of all existing and proposed structures. Profile drawing or drawings with this information may be required on a case-by-case basis to demonstrate minimization of impacts. Any application that proposes piping or culverting stream flows shall provide a longitudinal profile of the pipe or culvert position and stream bed thalweg, or shall provide spot elevations of the stream thalweg at the beginning and end of the pipe or culvert, extending to a minimum of 10 feet beyond the limits of proposed impact.

10. A narrative description of all impacts proposed to surface waters, including the type of activity to be conducted in surface waters and any physical alteration to surface waters. Surface water impacts shall be identified as follows:

a. Wetland impacts identified according to their Cowardin classification (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested); and for each classification, the individual impacts quantified in square feet to the nearest whole number, cumulatively summed in square feet, and then the sum converted to acres and rounded to two decimal places using commonly accepted arithmetic principles of rounding.

b. Individual stream impacts (i) quantified by length in linear feet to the nearest whole number and by average width in feet to the nearest whole number; (ii) quantified in square feet to the nearest whole number; and (iii) when compensatory mitigation is required, the impacts identified according to the assessed type using the Unified Stream Methodology.

c. Open water impacts identified according to their Cowardin classification, and for each type, the individual impacts quantified in square feet to the nearest whole number, cumulatively summed in square feet, and then the sum converted to acres and rounded to two decimal places using commonly accepted arithmetic principles of rounding.

d. A copy of the approved jurisdictional determination when available, or when unavailable, (i) the preliminary jurisdictional determination from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), or DEQ or (ii) other correspondence from the USACE, NRCS, or DEQ indicating approval of the boundary of applicable jurisdictional surface waters, including wetlands data sheets if applicable.

e. A delineation map that (i) depicts the geographic area or areas of all surface water boundaries delineated in accordance with 9VAC25-210-45 and confirmed in accordance with the jurisdictional determination process; (ii) identifies such areas in accordance with subdivisions 10 a, 10 b, and 10 c of this subsection; and (iii) quantifies and identifies any other surface waters according to their Cowardin classification (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested) or similar terminology.

11. An alternatives analysis for the proposed project detailing the specific on-site measures taken during project design and development to first avoid and then minimize impacts to surface waters to the maximum extent practicable in accordance with the Guidelines for Specification of Disposal Sites for Dredged or Fill Material, 40 CFR Part 230. Avoidance and minimization includes, but is not limited to, the specific on-site measures taken to reduce the size, scope, configuration, or density of the proposed project, including review of alternative sites where required for the project, which would avoid or result in less adverse impact to surface waters, and documentation demonstrating the reason the applicant determined less damaging alternatives are not practicable. The analysis shall demonstrate to the satisfaction of the board that avoidance and minimization opportunities have been identified and measures have been applied to the proposed activity such that the proposed activity in terms of impacts to state waters and fish and wildlife resources is the least environmentally damaging practicable alternative.

12. A compensatory mitigation plan to achieve no net loss of wetland acreage and functions or stream functions and water quality benefits. Any compensatory mitigation plan proposing the purchase of mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program credits shall include the number and type of credits proposed to be purchased and documentation from the approved bank or in-lieu fee program sponsor of the availability of credits at the time of application.

13. A copy of the FEMA flood insurance rate map or FEMA-approved local floodplain map depicting any 100-year floodplains.

14. Permit application fee. The applicant will be notified by the board as to the appropriate fee for the project in accordance with 9VAC25-20.

15. A written description and a graphical depiction identifying all upland areas including buffers, wetlands, open water, other surface waters, and compensatory mitigation areas located within the proposed project boundary that are under a deed restriction, conservation easement, restrictive covenant, or other land use protective instrument (i.e., protected areas). Such description and a graphical depiction shall include the nature of the prohibited activities within the protected areas and the limits of Chesapeake Bay Resource Protection Areas (RPAs) as field-verified by the applicant, and if available, the limits as approved by the locality in which the project site is located, unless the proposed use is exempt from the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Area Designation and Management Regulations (9VAC25-830), as additional state or local requirements may apply if the project is located within an RPA.

16. Signature page that has been signed, dated, and certified by the applicant in accordance with 9VAC25-210-100. If the applicant is a business or other organization, the signature must be made by an individual with the authority to bind the business or organization, and the title of the signatory must be provided. The application signature page, either on the copy submitted to the Virginia Marine Resources Commission or to DEQ, must have an original signature. Electronic submittals containing the original signature page, such as that contained in a scanned document file, are acceptable.

C. Upon receipt of an application from the Department of Transportation for a road or highway construction project by the appropriate DEQ office, the board has 10 business days, pursuant to § 33.2-258 of the Code of Virginia, to review the application and either determine the information requested in subsection B of this section is complete or inform the Department of Transportation that additional information is required to make the application complete. Upon receipt of an application from other applicants for any type of project, the board has 15 days to review the application and either determine that the information requested in subsection B of this section is complete or inform the applicant that additional information is required to make the application complete. Pursuant to § 33.2-258 of the Code of Virginia, coverage under this VWP general permit for Department of Transportation road or highway construction projects shall be approved or approved with conditions, or the application shall be denied, within 30 business days of receipt of a complete application. For all other projects, coverage under this VWP general permit shall be approved or approved with conditions, or the application shall be denied, within 45 days of receipt of a complete application. If the board fails to act within the applicable 30 or 45 days on a complete application, coverage under this VWP general permit shall be deemed granted.

1. In evaluating the application, the board shall make an assessment of the impacts associated with the project in combination with other existing or proposed impacts. Application for coverage under this VWP general permit shall be denied if the cumulative impacts will cause or contribute to a significant impairment of state waters or fish and wildlife resources.

2. The board may place additional requirements on a project in order to grant coverage under this VWP general permit. However, the requirements must be consistent with this chapter.

D. Incomplete application.

1. Where an application for general permit coverage is not accepted as complete by the board within the applicable 10 or 15 days of receipt, the board shall require the submission of additional information from the applicant and may suspend processing of any application until such time as the applicant has supplied the requested information and the application is complete. Where the applicant becomes aware that he omitted one or more relevant facts from an application, or submitted incorrect information in an application or in any report to the board, the applicant shall immediately submit such facts or the correct information. A revised application with new information shall be deemed a new application for the purposes of review but shall not require an additional permit application fee.

2. An incomplete permit application for general permit coverage may be administratively withdrawn from processing by the board for failure to provide the required information after 60 days from the date of the latest written information request made by the board. The board shall provide (i) notice to the applicant and (ii) an opportunity for an informal fact-finding proceeding when administratively withdrawing an incomplete application. Resubmittal of an application for the same or similar project, after such time that the original permit application was administratively withdrawn, shall require submittal of an additional permit application fee.

3. An applicant may request a suspension of application review by the board, but requesting a suspension shall not preclude the board from administratively withdrawing an incomplete application. Resubmittal of a permit application for the same or similar project, after such time that the original permit application was administratively withdrawn, shall require submittal of an additional permit application fee.

9VAC25-660-100

9VAC25-660-100. VWP general permit.

VWP GENERAL PERMIT NO. WP1 FOR IMPACTS LESS THAN ONE-HALF ACRE UNDER THE VIRGINIA WATER PROTECTION PERMIT AND THE VIRGINIA STATE WATER CONTROL LAW

Effective date: August 2, 2016
Expiration date: August 1, 2026

In compliance with § 401 of the Clean Water Act, as amended (33 USC § 1341) and the State Water Control Law and regulations adopted pursuant thereto, the board has determined that there is a reasonable assurance that this VWP general permit, if complied with, will protect instream beneficial uses, will not violate applicable water quality standards, and will not cause or contribute to a significant impairment of state waters or fish and wildlife resources. In issuing this VWP general permit, the board has not taken into consideration the structural stability of any proposed activities.

The permanent or temporary impact of less than one-half acre of nontidal wetlands or open water and up to 300 linear feet of nontidal stream bed shall be subject to the provisions of the VWP general permit set forth herein; any requirements in coverage granted under this VWP general permit; the Clean Water Act, as amended; and the State Water Control Law and regulations adopted pursuant to it.

Part I. Special Conditions.

A. Authorized activities.

1. The activities authorized by this chapter shall not cause more than the permanent or temporary impacts to less than one-half acre of nontidal wetlands or open water and up to 300 linear feet of nontidal stream bed. Additional permit requirements as stipulated by the board in the coverage letter, if any, shall be enforceable conditions of this permit.

2. Any changes to the authorized permanent impacts to surface waters shall require a notice of planned change in accordance with 9VAC25-660-80. An application or request for modification to coverage or another VWP permit application may be required.

3. Any changes to the authorized temporary impacts to surface waters shall require written notification to and approval from the Department of Environmental Quality in accordance with 9VAC25-660-80 prior to initiating the impacts and restoration to preexisting conditions in accordance with the conditions of this permit.

4. Modification to compensation requirements may be approved at the request of the permittee when a decrease in the amount of authorized surface waters impacts occurs, provided that the adjusted compensation meets the initial compensation goals.

B. Overall conditions.

1. The activities authorized by this VWP general permit shall be executed in a manner so as to minimize adverse impacts on instream beneficial uses as defined in § 62.1-10 (b) of the Code of Virginia.

2. No activity may substantially disrupt the movement of aquatic life indigenous to the water body, including those species that normally migrate through the area, unless the primary purpose of the activity is to impound water. Pipes and culverts placed in streams must be installed to maintain low flow conditions and shall be countersunk at both inlet and outlet ends of the pipe or culvert, unless otherwise specifically approved by the Department of Environmental Quality on a case-by-case basis, and as follows: The requirement to countersink does not apply to extensions or maintenance of existing pipes and culverts that are not countersunk, floodplain pipes and culverts being placed above ordinary high water, pipes and culverts being placed on bedrock, or pipes and culverts required to be placed on slopes 5.0% or greater. Bedrock encountered during construction must be identified and approved in advance of a design change where the countersunk condition cannot be met. Pipes and culverts 24 inches or less in diameter shall be countersunk three inches below the natural stream bed elevations, and pipes and culverts greater than 24 inches shall be countersunk at least six inches below the natural stream bed elevations. Hydraulic capacity shall be determined based on the reduced capacity due to the countersunk position. In all stream crossings appropriate measures shall be implemented to minimize any disruption of aquatic life movement.

3. Wet or uncured concrete shall be prohibited from entry into flowing surface waters, unless the area is contained within a cofferdam and the work is performed in the dry or unless otherwise approved by the Department of Environmental Quality. Excess or waste concrete shall not be disposed of in flowing surface waters or washed into flowing surface waters.

4. All fill material shall be clean and free of contaminants in toxic concentrations or amounts in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations.

5. Erosion and sedimentation controls shall be designed in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992. These controls shall be placed prior to clearing and grading and maintained in good working order to minimize impacts to state waters. These controls shall remain in place until the area is stabilized and shall then be removed.

6. Exposed slopes and streambanks shall be stabilized immediately upon completion of work in each permitted impact area. All denuded areas shall be properly stabilized in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992.

7. All construction, construction access (e.g., cofferdams, sheetpiling, and causeways) and demolition activities associated with the project shall be accomplished in a manner that minimizes construction or waste materials from entering surface waters to the maximum extent practicable, unless authorized by this VWP general permit.

8. No machinery may enter flowing waters, unless authorized by this VWP general permit or approved prior to entry by the Department of Environmental Quality.

9. Heavy equipment in temporarily impacted wetland areas shall be placed on mats, geotextile fabric, or other suitable material to minimize soil disturbance to the maximum extent practicable. Equipment and materials shall be removed immediately upon completion of work.

10. All nonimpacted surface waters and compensatory mitigation areas within 50 feet of authorized activities and within the project or right-of-way limits shall be clearly flagged or marked for the life of the construction activity at that location to preclude unauthorized disturbances to these surface waters and compensatory mitigation areas during construction. The permittee shall notify contractors that no activities are to occur in these marked surface waters.

11. Temporary disturbances to surface waters during construction shall be avoided and minimized to the maximum extent practicable. All temporarily disturbed wetland areas shall be restored to preexisting conditions within 30 days of completing work at each respective temporary impact area, which shall include reestablishing preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable and planting or seeding with appropriate wetland vegetation according to cover type (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested). The permittee shall take all appropriate measures to promote and maintain revegetation of temporarily disturbed wetland areas with wetland vegetation through the second year post-disturbance. All temporarily impacted streams and streambanks shall be restored to their preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable within 30 days following the construction at that stream segment. Streambanks shall be seeded or planted with the same vegetation cover type originally present, including any necessary, supplemental erosion control grasses. Invasive species identified on the Department of Conservation and Recreation's Virginia Invasive Plant Species List shall not be used to the maximum extent practicable or without prior approval from the Department of Environmental Quality.

12. Materials (including fill, construction debris, and excavated and woody materials) temporarily stockpiled in wetlands shall be placed on mats or geotextile fabric, immediately stabilized to prevent entry into state waters, managed such that leachate does not enter state waters, and completely removed within 30 days following completion of that construction activity. Disturbed areas shall be returned to preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable; restored within 30 days following removal of the stockpile; and restored with the same vegetation cover type originally present, including any necessary, supplemental erosion control grasses. Invasive species identified on the Department of Conservation and Recreation's Virginia Invasive Plant Species List shall not be used to the maximum extent practicable or without prior approval from the Department of Environmental Quality.

13. Continuous flow of perennial springs shall be maintained by the installation of spring boxes, french drains, or other similar structures.

14. The permittee shall employ measures to prevent spills of fuels or lubricants into state waters.

15. The permittee shall conduct his activities in accordance with the time-of-year restrictions recommended by the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Wildlife Resources, the Virginia Marine Resources Commission, or other interested and affected agencies, as contained, when applicable, in a Department of Environmental Quality VWP general permit coverage letter, and shall ensure that all contractors are aware of the time-of-year restrictions imposed.

16. Water quality standards shall not be violated as a result of the construction activities.

17. If stream channelization or relocation is required, all work in surface waters shall be done in the dry, unless otherwise authorized by the Department of Environmental Quality, and all flows shall be diverted around the channelization or relocation area until the new channel is stabilized. This work shall be accomplished by leaving a plug at the inlet and outlet ends of the new channel during excavation. Once the new channel has been stabilized, flow shall be routed into the new channel by first removing the downstream plug and then the upstream plug. The rerouted stream flow must be fully established before construction activities in the old stream channel can begin.

C. Road crossings.

1. Access roads and associated bridges, pipes, and culverts shall be constructed to minimize the adverse effects on surface waters to the maximum extent practicable. Access roads constructed above preconstruction elevations and contours in surface waters must be bridged, piped, or culverted to maintain surface flows.

2. Installation of road crossings shall occur in the dry via the implementation of cofferdams, sheetpiling, stream diversions, or other similar structures.

D. Utility lines.

1. All utility line work in surface waters shall be performed in a manner that minimizes disturbance, and the area must be returned to its preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable and restored within 30 days of completing work in the area, unless otherwise authorized by the Department of Environmental Quality. Restoration shall be the seeding or planting of the same vegetation cover type originally present, including any necessary, supplemental erosion control grasses. Invasive species identified on the Department of Conservation and Recreation's Virginia Invasive Plant Species List shall not be used to the maximum extent practicable or without prior approval from the Department of Environmental Quality.

2. Material resulting from trench excavation may be temporarily sidecast into wetlands not to exceed a total of 90 days, provided the material is not placed in a manner such that it is dispersed by currents or other forces.

3. The trench for a utility line cannot be constructed in a manner that drains wetlands (e.g., backfilling with extensive gravel layers creating a french drain effect). For example, utility lines may be backfilled with clay blocks to ensure that the trench does not drain surface waters through which the utility line is installed.

E. Stream modification and stream bank protection.

1. Riprap bank stabilization shall be of an appropriate size and design in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992.

2. Riprap apron for all outfalls shall be designed in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992.

3. For stream bank protection activities, the structure and backfill shall be placed as close to the stream bank as practicable. No material shall be placed in excess of the minimum necessary for erosion protection.

4. All stream bank protection control structures shall be located to eliminate or minimize impacts to vegetated wetlands to the maximum extent practicable.

5. Asphalt and materials containing asphalt or other toxic substances shall not be used in the construction of submerged sills or breakwaters.

6. Redistribution of existing stream substrate for the purpose of erosion control is prohibited.

7. No material removed from the stream bottom shall be disposed of in surface waters, unless otherwise authorized by this VWP general permit.

F. Stormwater management facilities.

1. Stormwater management facilities shall be installed in accordance with best management practices and watershed protection techniques (e.g., vegetated buffers, siting considerations to minimize adverse effects to aquatic resources, bioengineering methods incorporated into the facility design to benefit water quality and minimize adverse effects to aquatic resources) that provide for long-term aquatic resources protection and enhancement, to the maximum extent practicable.

2. Compensation for unavoidable impacts shall not be allowed within maintenance areas of stormwater management facilities.

3. Maintenance activities within stormwater management facilities shall not require additional permit coverage or compensation, provided that the maintenance activities do not exceed the original contours of the facility, as approved and constructed, and are accomplished in designated maintenance areas as indicated in the facility maintenance or design plan or when unavailable, an alternative plan approved by the Department of Environmental Quality.

Part II. Construction and Compensation Requirements, Monitoring, and Reporting.

A. Minimum compensation requirements.

1. The permittee shall provide any required compensation for impacts in accordance with the conditions in this VWP general permit, the coverage letter, and the chapter promulgating the general permit.

2. The types of compensation options that may be considered for activities covered under this VWP general permit include the purchase of mitigation bank credits or the purchase of in-lieu fee program credits in accordance with 9VAC25-660-70 and the associated provisions of 9VAC25-210-116.

3. The final compensation plan shall be submitted to and approved by the board prior to a construction activity in permitted impacts areas. The board shall review and provide written comments on the final plan within 30 days of receipt or it shall be deemed approved. The final plan as approved by the board shall be an enforceable requirement of any coverage under this VWP general permit. Deviations from the approved final plan shall be submitted and approved in advance by the board.

B. Impact site construction monitoring.

1. Construction activities authorized by this permit that are within impact areas shall be monitored and documented. The monitoring shall consist of:

a. Preconstruction photographs taken at each impact area prior to initiation of activities within impact areas. Photographs remain on the project site and shall depict the impact area and the nonimpacted surface waters immediately adjacent to and downgradient of each impact area. Each photograph shall be labeled to include the following information: permit number, impact area number, date and time of the photograph, name of the person taking the photograph, photograph orientation, and photograph subject description.

b. Site inspections shall be conducted by the permittee or the permittee's qualified designee once every calendar month during activities within impact areas. Monthly inspections shall be conducted in the following areas: all authorized permanent and temporary impact areas; all avoided surface waters, including wetlands, stream channels, and open water; surface water areas within 50 feet of any land disturbing activity and within the project or right-of-way limits; and all on-site permanent preservation areas required under this permit. Observations shall be recorded on the inspection form provided by the Department of Environmental Quality. The form shall be completed in its entirety for each monthly inspection and shall be kept on site and made available for review by the Department of Environmental Quality staff upon request during normal business hours. Inspections are not required during periods of no activity within impact areas.

2. Monitoring of water quality parameters shall be conducted during permanent relocation of perennial streams through new channels in the manner noted below. The permittee shall report violations of water quality standards to the Department of Environmental Quality in accordance with the procedures in 9VAC25-660-100 Part II C. Corrective measures and additional monitoring may be required if water quality standards are not met. Reporting shall not be required if water quality standards are not violated.

a. A sampling station shall be located upstream and immediately downstream of the relocated channel.

b. Temperature, pH, and dissolved oxygen (D.O.) measurements shall be taken every 30 minutes for at least two hours at each station prior to opening the new channels and immediately before opening new channels.

c. Temperature, pH, and D.O. readings shall be taken after opening the channels and every 30 minutes for at least three hours at each station.

C. Reporting.

1. Written communications required by this VWP general permit shall be submitted to the appropriate Department of Environmental Quality office. The VWP general permit tracking number shall be included on all correspondence.

2. The Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified in writing prior to the start of construction activities at the first authorized impact area.

3. A construction status update form provided by the Department of Environmental Quality shall be completed and submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality twice per year for the duration of coverage under a VWP general permit. Forms completed in June shall be submitted by or on July 10, and forms completed in December shall be submitted by or on January 10. The form shall include reference to the VWP permit tracking number and one of the following statements for each authorized surface water impact location:

a. Construction activities have not yet started;

b. Construction activities have started;

c. Construction activities have started but are currently inactive; or

d. Construction activities are complete.

4. The Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified in writing within 30 days following the completion of all activities in all authorized impact areas.

5. The permittee shall notify the Department of Environmental Quality in writing when unusual or potentially complex conditions are encountered that require debris removal or involve a potentially toxic substance. Measures to remove the obstruction, material, or toxic substance or to change the location of a structure are prohibited until approved by the Department of Environmental Quality.

6. The permittee shall report fish kills or spills of oil or fuel immediately upon discovery. If spills or fish kills occur between the hours of 8:15 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, the appropriate Department of Environmental Quality regional office shall be notified; otherwise, the Department of Emergency Management shall be notified at 1-800-468-8892.

7. Violations of state water quality standards shall be reported to the appropriate Department of Environmental Quality office no later than the end of the business day following discovery.

8. The permittee shall notify the Department of Environmental Quality no later than the end of the third business day following the discovery of additional impacts to surface waters including wetlands, stream channels, and open water that are not authorized by the Department of Environmental Quality or to any required preservation areas. The notification shall include photographs, estimated acreage or linear footage of impacts, and a description of the impacts.

9. Submittals required by this VWP general permit shall contain the following signed certification statement:

"I certify under penalty of law that this document and all attachments were prepared under my direction or supervision in accordance with a system designed to assure that qualified personnel properly gather and evaluate the information submitted. Based on my inquiry of the person or persons who manage the system, or those persons directly responsible for gathering the information, the information submitted is, to the best of my knowledge and belief, true, accurate, and complete. I am aware that there are significant penalties for submitting false information, including the possibility of fine and imprisonment for knowing violation."

Part III. Conditions Applicable to All VWP General Permits.

A. Duty to comply. The permittee shall comply with all conditions, limitations, and other requirements of the VWP general permit; any requirements in coverage granted under this VWP general permit; the Clean Water Act, as amended; and the State Water Control Law and regulations adopted pursuant to it. Any VWP general permit violation or noncompliance is a violation of the Clean Water Act and State Water Control Law and is grounds for (i) enforcement action, (ii) VWP general permit coverage termination for cause, (iii) VWP general permit coverage revocation, (iv) denial of application for coverage, or (v) denial of an application for a modification to VWP general permit coverage. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to relieve the permittee of the duty to comply with all applicable federal and state statutes, regulations, and toxic standards and prohibitions.

B. Duty to mitigate. The permittee shall take all reasonable steps to minimize or prevent impacts in violation of the VWP general permit which may have a reasonable likelihood of adversely affecting human health or the environment.

C. Reopener. This VWP general permit may be reopened to modify its conditions when the circumstances on which the previous VWP general permit was based have materially and substantially changed, or special studies conducted by the board or the permittee show material and substantial change since the time the VWP general permit was issued and thereby constitute cause for revoking and reissuing the VWP general permit.

D. Compliance with state and federal law. Compliance with this VWP general permit constitutes compliance with the VWP permit requirements of the State Water Control Law. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to preclude the institution of any legal action under or relieve the permittee from any responsibilities, liabilities, or other penalties established pursuant to any other state law or regulation or under the authority preserved by § 510 of the Clean Water Act.

E. Property rights. Coverage under this VWP general permit does not convey property rights in either real or personal property or any exclusive privileges, nor does it authorize injury to private property, any invasion of personal property rights, or any infringement of federal, state, or local laws or regulations.

F. Severability. The provisions of this VWP general permit are severable.

G. Inspection and entry. Upon presentation of credentials, the permittee shall allow the board or any duly authorized agent of the board, at reasonable times and under reasonable circumstances, to enter upon the permittee's property, public or private, and have access to inspect and copy any records that must be kept as part of the VWP general permit conditions; to inspect any facilities, operations, or practices (including monitoring and control equipment) regulated or required under the VWP general permit; and to sample or monitor any substance, parameter, or activity for the purpose of assuring compliance with the conditions of the VWP general permit or as otherwise authorized by law. For the purpose of this section, the time for inspection shall be deemed reasonable during regular business hours. Nothing contained herein shall make an inspection time unreasonable during an emergency.

H. Transferability of VWP general permit coverage. VWP general permit coverage may be transferred to another permittee when all of the criteria listed in this subsection are met. On the date of the VWP general permit coverage transfer, the transferred VWP general permit coverage shall be as fully effective as if it had been granted directly to the new permittee.

1. The current permittee notifies the board of the proposed transfer of the general permit coverage and provides a written agreement between the current and new permittees containing a specific date of transfer of VWP general permit responsibility, coverage, and liability to the new permittee, or that the current permittee will retain such responsibility, coverage, or liability, including liability for compliance with the requirements of enforcement activities related to the authorized activity.

2. The board does not within 15 days notify the current and new permittees of its intent to modify or revoke and reissue the VWP general permit.

I. Notice of planned change. VWP general permit coverage may be modified subsequent to issuance in accordance with 9VAC25-660-80.

J. VWP general permit coverage termination for cause. VWP general permit coverage is subject to termination for cause by the board after public notice and opportunity for a hearing pursuant to § 62.1-44.15:02 of the Code of Virginia. Reasons for termination for cause are as follows:

1. Noncompliance by the permittee with any provision of this chapter, any condition of the VWP general permit, or any requirement in general permit coverage;

2. The permittee's failure in the application or during the process of granting VWP general permit coverage to disclose fully all relevant facts or the permittee's misrepresentation of any relevant facts at any time;

3. The permittee's violation of a special or judicial order;

4. A determination by the board that the authorized activity endangers human health or the environment and can be regulated to acceptable levels by a modification to the VWP general permit coverage or a termination;

5. A change in any condition that requires either a temporary or permanent reduction or elimination of any activity controlled by the VWP general permit; or

6. A determination that the authorized activity has ceased and that the compensation for unavoidable adverse impacts has been successfully completed.

K. The board may terminate VWP general permit coverage without cause when the permittee is no longer a legal entity due to death or dissolution or when a company is no longer authorized to conduct business in the Commonwealth. The termination shall be effective 30 days after notice of the proposed termination is sent to the last known address of the permittee or registered agent, unless the permittee objects within that time. If the permittee does object during that period, the board shall follow the applicable procedures for termination under §§ 62.1-44.15:02 and 62.1-44.15:25 of the Code of Virginia.

L. VWP general permit coverage termination by consent. The permittee shall submit a request for termination by consent within 30 days of completing or canceling all authorized activities requiring notification under 9VAC25-660-50 A and all compensatory mitigation requirements. When submitted for project completion, the request for termination by consent shall constitute a notice of project completion in accordance with 9VAC25-210-130 F. The director may accept this termination of coverage on behalf of the board. The permittee shall submit the following information:

1. Name, mailing address, and telephone number;

2. Name and location of the activity;

3. The VWP general permit tracking number; and

4. One of the following certifications:

a. For project completion:

"I certify under penalty of law that all activities and any required compensatory mitigation authorized by the VWP general permit and general permit coverage have been completed. I understand that by submitting this notice of termination I am no longer authorized to perform activities in surface waters in accordance with the VWP general permit and general permit coverage, and that performing activities in surface waters is unlawful where the activity is not authorized by the VWP permit or coverage, unless otherwise excluded from obtaining coverage. I also understand that the submittal of this notice does not release me from liability for any violations of the VWP general permit or coverage."

b. For project cancellation:

"I certify under penalty of law that the activities and any required compensatory mitigation authorized by the VWP general permit and general permit coverage will not occur. I understand that by submitting this notice of termination I am no longer authorized to perform activities in surface waters in accordance with the VWP general permit and general permit coverage, and that performing activities in surface waters is unlawful where the activity is not authorized by the VWP permit or coverage, unless otherwise excluded from obtaining coverage. I also understand that the submittal of this notice does not release me from liability for any violations of the VWP general permit or coverage, nor does it allow me to resume the authorized activities without reapplication and coverage."

c. For events beyond permittee control, the permittee shall provide a detailed explanation of the events, to be approved by the Department of Environmental Quality, and the following certification statement:

"I certify under penalty of law that the activities or the required compensatory mitigation authorized by the VWP general permit and general permit coverage have changed as the result of events beyond my control (see attached). I understand that by submitting this notice of termination I am no longer authorized to perform activities in surface waters in accordance with the VWP general permit and general permit coverage, and that performing activities in surface waters is unlawful where the activity is not authorized by the VWP permit or coverage, unless otherwise excluded from obtaining coverage. I also understand that the submittal of this notice does not release me from liability for any violations of the VWP general permit or coverage, nor does it allow me to resume the authorized activities without reapplication and coverage."

M. Civil and criminal liability. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to relieve the permittee from civil and criminal penalties for noncompliance.

N. Oil and hazardous substance liability. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to preclude the institution of legal action or relieve the permittee from any responsibilities, liabilities, or penalties to which the permittee is or may be subject under § 311 of the Clean Water Act or §§ 62.1-44.34:14 through 62.1-44.34:23 of the State Water Control Law.

O. Duty to cease or confine activity. It shall not be a defense for a permittee in an enforcement action that it would have been necessary to halt or reduce the activity for which VWP general permit coverage has been granted in order to maintain compliance with the conditions of the VWP general permit or coverage.

P. Duty to provide information.

1. The permittee shall furnish to the board information that the board may request to determine whether cause exists for modifying, revoking, or terminating VWP permit coverage or to determine compliance with the VWP general permit or general permit coverage. The permittee shall also furnish to the board, upon request, copies of records required to be kept by the permittee.

2. Plans, maps, conceptual reports, and other relevant information shall be submitted as required by the board prior to commencing construction.

Q. Monitoring and records requirements.

1. Monitoring of parameters, other than pollutants, shall be conducted according to approved analytical methods as specified in the VWP general permit. Analysis of pollutants will be conducted according to 40 CFR Part 136 (2000), Guidelines Establishing Test Procedures for the Analysis of Pollutants.

2. Samples and measurements taken for the purpose of monitoring shall be representative of the monitored activity.

3. The permittee shall retain records of all monitoring information, including all calibration and maintenance records and all original strip chart or electronic recordings for continuous monitoring instrumentation, copies of all reports required by the VWP general permit, and records of all data used to complete the application for coverage under the VWP general permit, for a period of at least three years from the date of general permit expiration. This period may be extended by request of the board at any time.

4. Records of monitoring information shall include, as appropriate:

a. The date, exact place, and time of sampling or measurements;

b. The name of the individuals who performed the sampling or measurements;

c. The date and time the analyses were performed;

d. The name of the individuals who performed the analyses;

e. The analytical techniques or methods supporting the information such as observations, readings, calculations, and bench data used;

f. The results of such analyses; and

g. Chain of custody documentation.

R. Unauthorized discharge of pollutants. Except in compliance with this VWP general permit, it shall be unlawful for the permittee to:

1. Discharge into state waters sewage, industrial wastes, other wastes, or any noxious or deleterious substances;

2. Excavate in a wetland;

3. Otherwise alter the physical, chemical, or biological properties of state waters and make them detrimental to the public health, to animal or aquatic life, or to the uses of such waters for domestic or industrial consumption, for recreation, or for other uses; or

4. On and after October 1, 2001, conduct the following activities in a wetland:

a. New activities to cause draining that significantly alter or degrade existing wetland acreage or functions;

b. Filling or dumping;

c. Permanent flooding or impounding; or

d. New activities that cause significant alteration or degradation of existing wetland acreage or functions.

S. Duty to reapply. Any permittee desiring to continue a previously authorized activity after the expiration date of the VWP general permit shall comply with the provisions in 9VAC25-660-27.

9VAC25-670-50

9VAC25-670-50. Notification.

A. Notification to the board will be required prior to commencing construction, as follows:

1. An application for coverage for proposed, permanent nontidal wetland or open water impacts greater than one-tenth acre or for proposed permanent nontidal stream bed impacts greater than 300 linear feet shall include all information pursuant to 9VAC25-670-60 B. Compensatory mitigation may be required for all permanent impacts.

2. An application for the coverage for proposed, permanent nontidal wetland or open water impacts up to one-tenth acre or for proposed, permanent nontidal stream bed impacts up to 300 linear feet shall be submitted in accordance with either subdivision 2 a or 2 b of this subsection:

a. For any proposed project in wetlands, open water, streams, or compensatory mitigation sites that are under a deed restriction, conservation easement, declaration of restrictive covenant, or other land use protective instrument (hereafter "protected areas"), when such restriction, easement, covenant, or instrument is the result of a federal or state permit action and is specific to activities in wetlands and compensatory mitigation sites, the application shall include all of the information required by 9VAC25-670-60 B. Compensatory mitigation may be required for all permanent impacts.

b. For all other projects, the application shall include the information required by subdivisions 1 through 7, 10, 11, 14, and 15 of 9VAC25-670-60 B and documentation that verifies the quantity and type of impacts. Compensatory mitigation may be required for all permanent impacts once the notification limits of one-tenth acre wetlands or open water, or 300 linear feet of stream bed, are exceeded, and if required, the application shall include the information in 9VAC25-670-60 B 12.

B. The Department of Environmental Quality-approved application forms shall serve as an application for a VWP permit or VWP general permit coverage.

C. The board will determine whether the proposed activity requires coordination with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Wildlife Resources regarding the presence of federal or state listed threatened and endangered species or designated critical habitat. Based upon consultation with these agencies, the board may deny application for coverage under this general permit. The applicant may also consult with these agencies prior to submitting an application. Species or habitat information that the applicant provides will assist the Department of Environmental Quality in reviewing and processing the application.

9VAC25-670-60

9VAC25-670-60. Application.

A. The applicant shall file a complete application in accordance with 9VAC25-670-50 and this section for coverage under this VWP general permit for impacts to surface waters from utility activities.

B. A complete application for VWP general permit coverage, at a minimum, consists of the following information, if applicable to the project:

1. The applicant's legal name, mailing address, telephone number, and if applicable, electronic mail address and fax number.

2. If different from the applicant, legal name, mailing address, telephone number, and if applicable, electronic mail address and fax number of property owner.

3. If applicable, the authorized agent's name, mailing address, telephone number, and if applicable, fax number and electronic mail address.

4. The existing VWP general permit tracking number, if applicable.

5. Project name and proposed project schedule.

6. The following information for the project site location and any related permittee-responsible compensatory mitigation site:

a. The physical street address, nearest street, or nearest route number; city or county; zip code; and if applicable, parcel number of the site or sites.

b. Name of the impacted water body or water bodies, or receiving waters, as applicable, at the site or sites.

c. The latitude and longitude to the nearest second at the center of the site or sites.

d. The fourth order subbasin, as defined by the hydrologic unit boundaries of the National Watershed Boundary Dataset, for the site or sites.

e. A detailed map depicting the location of the site or sites, including the project boundary and all existing preservation areas on the site or sites. The map (e.g., a U.S. Geologic Survey topographic quadrangle map) should be of sufficient detail to easily locate the site or sites for inspection.

7. A narrative description of the project, including project purpose and need.

8. Plan-view drawing or drawings of the project site sufficient to assess the project, including at a minimum the following:

a. North arrow, graphic scale, and existing and proposed topographic or bathymetric contours.

b. Limits of proposed impacts to surface waters.

c. Location of all existing and proposed structures.

d. All delineated wetlands and all jurisdictional surface waters on the site, including the Cowardin classification (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested) for those surface waters and waterway name, if designated; ebb and flood or direction of flow; and ordinary high water mark in nontidal areas.

e. The limits of Chesapeake Bay Resource Protection Areas (RPAs) as field-verified by the applicant, and if available, the limits as approved by the locality in which the project site is located, unless the proposed use is exempt from the Chesapeake Bay reservation Area Designation and Management Regulations (9VAC25-830).

f. The limits of any areas that are under a deed restriction, conservation easement, restrictive covenant, or other land use protective instrument (i.e., protected areas).

9. Cross-sectional and profile drawing or drawings. Cross-sectional drawing or drawings of each proposed impact area shall include at a minimum a graphic scale, existing structures, existing and proposed elevations, limits of surface water areas, ebb and flood or direction of flow (if applicable), ordinary high water mark in nontidal areas, impact limits, and location of all existing and proposed structures. Profile drawing or drawings with this information may be required on a case-by-case basis to demonstrate minimization of impacts. Any application that proposes piping or culverting stream flows shall provide a longitudinal profile of the pipe or culvert position and stream bed thalweg, or shall provide spot elevations of the stream thalweg at the beginning and end of the pipe or culvert, extending to a minimum of 10 feet beyond the limits of proposed impact.

10. A narrative description of all impacts proposed to surface waters, including the type of activity to be conducted in surface waters and any physical alteration to surface waters. Surface water impacts shall be identified as follows:

a. Wetland impacts identified according to their Cowardin classification (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested); and for each classification, the individual impacts quantified in square feet to the nearest whole number, cumulatively summed in square feet, and then the sum converted to acres and rounded to two decimal places using commonly accepted arithmetic principles of rounding.

b. Individual stream impacts (i) quantified by length in linear feet to the nearest whole number and by average width in feet to the nearest whole number; (ii) quantified in square feet to the nearest whole number; and (iii) when compensatory mitigation is required, the impacts identified according to the assessed type using the Unified Stream Methodology.

c. Open water impacts identified according to their Cowardin classification, and for each type, the individual impacts quantified in square feet to the nearest whole number, cumulatively summed in square feet, and then the sum converted to acres and rounded to two decimal places using commonly accepted arithmetic principles of rounding.

d. A copy of the approved jurisdictional determination, when available, or when unavailable, (i) the preliminary jurisdictional determination from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), or DEQ or (ii) other correspondence from the USACE, NRCS, or DEQ indicating approval of the boundary of applicable jurisdictional surface waters, including wetlands data sheets if applicable.

e. A delineation map that (i) depicts the geographic area or areas of all surface water boundaries delineated in accordance with 9VAC25-210-45 and confirmed in accordance with the jurisdictional determination process; (ii) identifies such areas in accordance with subdivisions 10 a, 10 b, and 10 c of this subsection; and (iii) quantifies and identifies any other surface waters according to their Cowardin classification (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested) or similar terminology.

11. An alternatives analysis for the proposed project detailing the specific on-site measures taken during project design and development to first avoid and then minimize impacts to surface waters to the maximum extent practicable in accordance with the Guidelines for Specification of Disposal Sites for Dredged or Fill Material, 40 CFR Part 230. Avoidance and minimization includes, but is not limited to, the specific on-site measures taken to reduce the size, scope, configuration, or density of the proposed project, including review of alternative sites where required for the project, which would avoid or result in less adverse impact to surface waters, and documentation demonstrating the reason the applicant determined less damaging alternatives are not practicable. The analysis shall demonstrate to the satisfaction of the board that avoidance and minimization opportunities have been identified and measures have been applied to the proposed activity such that the proposed activity in terms of impacts to state waters and fish and wildlife resources is the least environmentally damaging practicable alternative.

12. A compensatory mitigation plan to achieve no net loss of wetland acreage and functions or stream functions and water quality benefits.

a. If permittee-responsible compensation is proposed for wetland impacts, a conceptual wetland compensatory mitigation plan must be submitted in order for an application to be deemed complete and shall include at a minimum (i) the goals and objectives in terms of replacement of wetland acreage and functions; (ii) a detailed location map including latitude and longitude to the nearest second and the fourth order subbasin, as defined by the hydrologic unit boundaries of the National Watershed Boundary Dataset, at the center of the site; (iii) a description of the surrounding land use; (iv) a hydrologic analysis including a draft water budget for nontidal areas based on expected monthly inputs and outputs that will project water level elevations for a typical year, a dry year, and a wet year; (v) groundwater elevation data, if available, or the proposed location of groundwater monitoring wells to collect these data; (vi) wetland delineation confirmation, data sheets, and maps for existing surface water areas on the proposed site or sites; (vii) a conceptual grading plan; (viii) a conceptual planting scheme including suggested plant species and zonation of each vegetation type proposed; (ix) a description of existing soils including general information on both topsoil and subsoil conditions, permeability, and the need for soil amendments; (x) a draft design of any water control structures; (xi) inclusion of buffer areas; (xii) a description of any structures and features necessary for the success of the site; (xiii) the schedule for compensatory mitigation site construction; and (xiv) measures for the control of undesirable species.

b. If permittee-responsible compensation is proposed for stream impacts, a conceptual stream compensatory mitigation plan must be submitted in order for an application to be deemed complete and shall include at a minimum (i) the goals and objectives in terms of water quality benefits and replacement of stream functions; (ii) a detailed location map including the latitude and longitude to the nearest second and the fourth order subbasin, as defined by the hydrologic unit boundaries of the National Watershed Boundary Dataset, at the center of the site; (iii) a description of the surrounding land use; (iv) the proposed stream segment restoration locations including plan view and cross-sectional drawings; (v) the stream deficiencies that need to be addressed; (vi) data obtained from a DEQ-approved, stream impact assessment methodology such as the Unified Stream Methodology; (vii) the proposed restoration measures to be employed including channel measurements, proposed design flows, types of instream structures, and conceptual planting scheme; (viii) reference stream data, if available; (ix) inclusion of buffer areas; (x) schedule for restoration activities; and (xi) measures for the control of undesirable species.

c. For any permittee-responsible compensatory mitigation, the conceptual compensatory mitigation plan shall also include a draft of the intended protective mechanism or mechanisms, in accordance with 9VAC25-210-116 B 2, such as, but not limited to, a conservation easement held by a third party in accordance with the Virginia Conservation Easement Act (§ 10.1-1009 et seq. of the Code of Virginia) or the Virginia Open-Space Land Act (§ 10.1-1700 et seq. of the Code of Virginia), a duly recorded declaration of restrictive covenants, or other protective instrument. The draft intended protective mechanism shall contain the information in subdivisions c (1), c (2), and c (3) of this subdivision 12 or in lieu thereof shall describe the intended protective mechanism or mechanisms that contains the information required below:

(1) A provision for access to the site;

(2) The following minimum restrictions: no ditching, land clearing, or discharge of dredge or fill material, and no activity in the area designated as compensatory mitigation area with the exception of maintenance; corrective action measures; or DEQ-approved activities described in the approved final compensatory mitigation plan or long-term management plan; and

(3) A long-term management plan that identifies a long-term steward and adequate financial assurances for long-term management in accordance with the current standard for mitigation banks and in-lieu fee program sites, except that financial assurances will not be necessary for permittee-responsible compensation provided by government agencies on government property. If approved by DEQ, permittee-responsible compensation on government property and long-term protection may be provided through federal facility management plans, integrated natural resources management plans, or other alternate management plans submitted by a government agency or public authority.

d. Any compensatory mitigation plan proposing the purchase of mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program credits shall include the number and type of credits proposed to be purchased and documentation from the approved mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program sponsor of the availability of credits at the time of application.

13. Permit application fee. The applicant will be notified by the board as to the appropriate fee for the project in accordance with 9VAC25-20.

14. A written description and a graphical depiction identifying all upland areas including buffers, wetlands, open water, other surface waters, and compensatory mitigation areas located within the proposed project boundary or permittee-responsible compensatory mitigation areas that are under a deed restriction, conservation easement, restrictive covenant, or other land use protective instrument (i.e., protected areas). Such description and a graphical depiction shall include the nature of the prohibited activities within the protected areas and the limits of Chesapeake Bay Resource Protection Areas (RPAs) as field-verified by the applicant, and if available, the limits as approved by the locality in which the project site is located, unless the proposed use is exempt from the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Area Designation and Management Regulations (9VAC25-830), as additional state or local requirements may apply if the project is located within an RPA.

15. Signature page that has been signed, dated, and certified by the applicant in accordance with 9VAC25-210-100. If the applicant is a business or other organization, the signature must be made by an individual with the authority to bind the business or organization, and the title of the signatory must be provided. The application signature page, either on the copy submitted to the Virginia Marine Resources Commission or to DEQ, must have an original signature. Electronic submittals containing the original signature page, such as that contained in a scanned document file, are acceptable.

C. An analysis of the functions of wetlands proposed to be impacted may be required by DEQ. When required, the method selected for the analysis shall assess water quality or habitat metrics and shall be coordinated with DEQ in advance of conducting the analysis.

1. No analysis shall be required when:

a. Wetland impacts per each single and complete project total 1.00 acre or less; or

b. The proposed compensatory mitigation consists of purchasing mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program credits at standard mitigation ratios of 2:1 for forest, 1.5:1 for scrub-shrub, and 1:1 for emergent, or higher.

2. Analysis shall be required when wetland impacts per each single and complete project total 1.01 acres or more and when any of the following applies:

a. The proposed compensatory mitigation consists of permittee-responsible compensation, including water quality enhancements as replacement for wetlands; or

b. The proposed compensatory mitigation consists of purchasing mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program credits at less than the standard mitigation ratios of 2:1 for forest, 1.5:1 for scrub-shrub, and 1:1 for emergent.

D. Upon receipt of an application by the appropriate DEQ office, the board has 15 days to review the application and either determine the information requested in subsection B of this section is complete or inform the applicant that additional information is required to make the application complete. Coverage under the VWP general permit shall be approved or approved with conditions, or the application shall be denied, within 45 days of receipt of a complete application. If the board fails to act within 45 days on a complete application, coverage under the VWP general permit shall be deemed granted.

1. In evaluating the application, the board shall make an assessment of the impacts associated with the project in combination with other existing or proposed impacts. Application for coverage under the VWP general permit shall be denied if the cumulative impacts will cause or contribute to a significant impairment of surface waters or fish and wildlife resources.

2. The board may place additional requirements on a project in order to grant coverage under this VWP general permit. However, the requirements must be consistent with this chapter.

E. Incomplete application.

1. Where an application for general permit coverage is not accepted as complete by the board within 15 days of receipt, the board shall require the submission of additional information from the applicant and may suspend processing of any application until such time as the applicant has supplied the requested information and the application is complete. Where the applicant becomes aware that he omitted one or more relevant facts from an application, or submitted incorrect information in an application or any report to the board, the applicant shall immediately submit such facts or the correct information. A revised application with new information shall be deemed a new application for the purposes of review but shall not require an additional permit application fee.

2. An incomplete permit application for general permit coverage may be administratively withdrawn from processing by the board for failure to provide the required information after 60 days from the date of the latest written information request made by the board. The board shall provide (i) notice to the applicant and (ii) an opportunity for an informal fact-finding proceeding when administratively withdrawing an incomplete application. Resubmittal of an application for the same or similar project, after such time that the original permit application was administratively withdrawn, shall require submittal of an additional permit application fee.

3. An applicant may request a suspension of application review by the board, but requesting a suspension shall not preclude the board from administratively withdrawing an incomplete application. Resubmittal of a permit application for the same or similar project, after such time that the original permit application was administratively withdrawn, shall require submittal of an additional permit application fee.

9VAC25-670-100

9VAC25-670-100. VWP general permit.

VWP GENERAL PERMIT NO. WP2 FOR FACILITIES AND ACTIVITIES OF UTILITIES AND PUBLIC SERVICE COMPANIES REGULATED BY THE FEDERAL ENERGY REGULATORY COMMISSION OR THE STATE CORPORATION COMMISSION AND OTHER UTILITY LINE ACTIVITIES UNDER THE VIRGINIA WATER PROTECTION PERMIT AND THE VIRGINIA STATE WATER CONTROL LAW

Effective date: August 2, 2016
Expiration date: August 1, 2026

In compliance with § 401 of the Clean Water Act, as amended (33 USC § 1341) and the State Water Control Law and regulations adopted pursuant thereto, the board has determined that there is a reasonable assurance that this VWP general permit, if complied with, will protect instream beneficial uses, will not violate applicable water quality standards, and will not cause or contribute to a significant impairment of surface waters or fish and wildlife resources. In issuing this VWP general permit, the board has not taken into consideration the structural stability of any proposed activities.

The permanent or temporary impact of up to one acre of nontidal wetlands or open water and up to 1,500 linear feet of nontidal stream bed shall be subject to the provisions of the VWP general permit set forth herein; any requirements in coverage granted under this VWP general permit; the Clean Water Act, as amended; and the State Water Control Law and regulations adopted pursuant to it.

Part I. Special Conditions.

A. Authorized activities.

1. The activities authorized by this chapter shall not cause more than the permanent or temporary impacts of up to one acre of nontidal wetlands or open water and up to 1,500 linear feet of nontidal stream bed. Additional permit requirements as stipulated by the board in the coverage letter, if any, shall be enforceable conditions of this permit.

2. Any changes to the authorized permanent impacts to surface waters shall require a notice of planned change in accordance with 9VAC25-670-80. An application or request for modification to coverage or another VWP permit application may be required.

3. Any changes to the authorized temporary impacts to surface waters shall require written notification to and approval from the Department of Environmental Quality in accordance with 9VAC25-670-80 prior to initiating the impacts and restoration to preexisting conditions in accordance with the conditions of this permit.

4. Modification to compensation requirements may be approved at the request of the permittee when a decrease in the amount of authorized surface waters impacts occurs, provided that the adjusted compensation meets the initial compensation goals.

B. Overall conditions.

1. The activities authorized by this VWP general permit shall be executed in a manner so as to minimize adverse impacts on instream beneficial uses as defined in § 62.1-10 (b) of the Code of Virginia.

2. No activity may substantially disrupt the movement of aquatic life indigenous to the water body, including those species which normally migrate through the area, unless the primary purpose of the activity is to impound water. Pipes and culverts placed in streams must be installed to maintain low flow conditions and shall be countersunk at both inlet and outlet ends of the pipe or culvert, unless otherwise specifically approved by the Department of Environmental Quality on a case-by-case basis, and as follows: The requirement to countersink does not apply to extensions or maintenance of existing pipes and culverts that are not countersunk, floodplain pipes and culverts being placed above ordinary high water, pipes and culverts being placed on bedrock, or pipes and culverts required to be placed on slopes 5.0% or greater. Bedrock encountered during construction must be identified and approved in advance of a design change where the countersunk condition cannot be met. Pipes and culverts 24 inches or less in diameter shall be countersunk three inches below the natural stream bed elevations, and pipes and culverts greater than 24 inches shall be countersunk at least six inches below the natural stream bed elevations. Hydraulic capacity shall be determined based on the reduced capacity due to the countersunk position. In all stream crossings appropriate measures shall be implemented to minimize any disruption of aquatic life movement.

3. Wet or uncured concrete shall be prohibited from entry into flowing surface waters, unless the area is contained within a cofferdam and the work is performed in the dry or unless otherwise approved by the Department of Environmental Quality. Excess or waste concrete shall not be disposed of in flowing surface waters or washed into flowing surface waters.

4. All fill material shall be clean and free of contaminants in toxic concentrations or amounts in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations.

5. Erosion and sedimentation controls shall be designed in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992. These controls shall be placed prior to clearing and grading and maintained in good working order to minimize impacts to state waters. These controls shall remain in place until the area is stabilized and shall then be removed.

6. Exposed slopes and streambanks shall be stabilized immediately upon completion of work in each permitted area. All denuded areas shall be properly stabilized in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992.

7. All construction, construction access (e.g., cofferdams, sheetpiling, and causeways) and demolition activities associated with the project shall be accomplished in such a manner that minimizes construction or waste materials from entering surface waters to the maximum extent practicable, unless authorized by this VWP general permit.

8. No machinery may enter flowing waters, unless authorized by this VWP general permit or approved prior to entry by the Department of Environmental Quality.

9. Heavy equipment in temporarily impacted wetland areas shall be placed on mats, geotextile fabric, or other suitable material, to minimize soil disturbance to the maximum extent practicable. Equipment and materials shall be removed immediately upon completion of work.

10. All nonimpacted surface waters and compensatory mitigation areas within 50 feet of authorized activities and within the project or right-of-way limits shall be clearly flagged or marked for the life of the construction activity at that location to preclude any unauthorized disturbances to these surface waters and compensatory mitigation areas during construction. The permittee shall notify contractors that no activities are to occur in these marked surface waters.

11. Temporary disturbances to surface waters during construction shall be avoided and minimized to the maximum extent practicable. All temporarily disturbed wetland areas shall be restored to preexisting conditions within 30 days of completing work at each respective temporary impact area, which shall include reestablishing preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable and planting or seeding with appropriate wetland vegetation according to cover type (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested). The permittee shall take all appropriate measures to promote and maintain revegetation of temporarily disturbed wetland areas with wetland vegetation through the second year post-disturbance. All temporarily impacted streams and streambanks shall be restored to their preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable within 30 days following the construction at that stream segment. Streambanks shall be seeded or planted with the same vegetation cover type originally present, including any necessary, supplemental erosion control grasses. Invasive species identified on the Department of Conservation and Recreation's Virginia Invasive Plant Species List shall not be used to the maximum extent practicable or without prior approval from the Department of Environmental Quality.

12. Materials (including fill, construction debris, and excavated and woody materials) temporarily stockpiled in wetlands shall be placed on mats or geotextile fabric, immediately stabilized to prevent entry into state waters, managed such that leachate does not enter state waters, and completely removed within 30 days following completion of that construction activity. Disturbed areas shall be returned to preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact areas where practicable; restored within 30 days following removal of the stockpile; and restored with the same vegetation cover type originally present, including any necessary, supplemental erosion control grasses. Invasive species identified on the Department of Conservation and Recreation's Virginia Invasive Plant Species List shall not be used to the maximum extent practicable or without prior approval from the Department of Environmental Quality.

13. Continuous flow of perennial springs shall be maintained by the installation of spring boxes, french drains, or other similar structures.

14. The permittee shall employ measures to prevent spills of fuels or lubricants into state waters.

15. The permittee shall conduct his activities in accordance with the time-of-year restrictions recommended by the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Wildlife Resources, the Virginia Marine Resources Commission, or other interested and affected agencies, as contained, when applicable, in a Department of Environmental Quality VWP general permit coverage letter, and shall ensure that all contractors are aware of the time-of-year restrictions imposed.

16. Water quality standards shall not be violated as a result of the construction activities.

17. If stream channelization or relocation is required, all work in surface waters shall be done in the dry, unless otherwise authorized by the Department of Environmental Quality, and all flows shall be diverted around the channelization or relocation area until the new channel is stabilized. This work shall be accomplished by leaving a plug at the inlet and outlet ends of the new channel during excavation. Once the new channel has been stabilized, flow shall be routed into the new channel by first removing the downstream plug and then the upstream plug. The rerouted steam flow must be fully established before construction activities in the old stream channel can begin.

C. Road crossings.

1. Access roads and associated bridges, pipes, and culverts shall be constructed to minimize the adverse effects on surface waters to the maximum extent practicable. Access roads constructed above preconstruction elevations and contours in surface waters must be bridged, piped, or culverted to maintain surface flows.

2. Installation of road crossings shall occur in the dry via the implementation of cofferdams, sheetpiling, stream diversions, or similar structures.

D. Utility lines.

1. All utility line work in surface waters shall be performed in a manner that minimizes disturbance, and the area must be returned to its preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable and restored within 30 days of completing work in the area, unless otherwise authorized by the Department of Environmental Quality. Restoration shall be the seeding or planting of the same vegetation cover type originally present, including any necessary, supplemental erosion control grasses. Invasive species identified on the Department of Conservation and Recreation's Virginia Invasive Plant Species List shall not be used to the maximum extent practicable or without prior approval from the Department of Environmental Quality.

2. Material resulting from trench excavation may be temporarily sidecast into wetlands, not to exceed 90 days, provided the material is not placed in a manner such that it is dispersed by currents or other forces.

3. The trench for a utility line cannot be constructed in a manner that drains wetlands (e.g., backfilling with extensive gravel layers creating a trench drain effect.). For example, utility lines may be backfilled with clay blocks to ensure that the trench does not drain surface waters through which the utility line is installed.

E. Stream modification and stream bank protection.

1. Riprap bank stabilization shall be of an appropriate size and design in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992.

2. Riprap apron for all outfalls shall be designed in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992.

3. For stream bank protection activities, the structure and backfill shall be placed as close to the stream bank as practicable. No material shall be placed in excess of the minimum necessary for erosion protection.

4. All stream bank protection structures shall be located to eliminate or minimize impacts to vegetated wetlands to the maximum extent practicable.

5. Asphalt and materials containing asphalt or other toxic substances shall not be used in the construction of submerged sills or breakwaters.

6. Redistribution of existing stream substrate for the purpose of erosion control is prohibited.

7. No material removed from the stream bottom shall be disposed of in surface waters, unless otherwise authorized by this VWP general permit.

Part II. Construction and Compensation Requirements, Monitoring, and Reporting.

A. Minimum compensation requirements.

1. The permittee shall provide any required compensation for impacts in accordance with the conditions in this VWP general permit, the coverage letter, and the chapter promulgating the general permit. For all compensation that requires a protective mechanism, including preservation of surface waters or buffers, the permittee shall record the approved protective mechanism in the chain of title to the property, or an equivalent instrument for government-owned lands, and proof of recordation shall be submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality prior to commencing impacts in surface waters.

2. Compensation options that may be considered under this VWP general permit shall meet the criteria in 9VAC25-210-116 and 9VAC25-670-70.

3. The permittee-responsible compensation site or sites depicted in the conceptual compensation plan submitted with the application shall constitute the compensation site. A site change may require a modification to coverage.

4. For compensation involving the purchase of mitigation bank credits or the purchase of in-lieu fee program credits, the permittee shall not initiate work in permitted impact areas until documentation of the mitigation bank credit purchase or of the in-lieu fee program credit purchase has been submitted to and received by the Department of Environmental Quality.

5. The final compensation plan shall be submitted to and approved by the board prior to a construction activity in permitted impact areas. The board shall review and provide written comments on the final plan within 30 days of receipt or it shall be deemed approved. The final plan as approved by the board shall be an enforceable requirement of any coverage under this VWP general permit. Deviations from the approved final plan shall be submitted and approved in advance by the board.

a. The final permittee-responsible wetlands compensation plan shall include:

(1) The complete information on all components of the conceptual compensation plan.

(2) A summary of the type and acreage of existing wetland impacts anticipated during the construction of the compensation site and the proposed compensation for these impacts; a site access plan; a monitoring plan, including proposed success criteria, monitoring goals, and the location of photo-monitoring stations, monitoring wells, vegetation sampling points, and reference wetlands or streams, if available; an abatement and control plan for undesirable plant species; an erosion and sedimentation control plan; a construction schedule; and the final protective mechanism for the protection of the compensation site or sites, including all surface waters and buffer areas within its boundaries.

(3) The approved protective mechanism. The protective mechanism shall be recorded in the chain of title to the property, or an equivalent instrument for government-owned lands, and proof of recordation shall be submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality prior to commencing impacts in surface waters.

b. The final permittee-responsible stream compensation plan shall include:

(1) The complete information on all components of the conceptual compensation plan.

(2) An evaluation, discussion, and plan drawing or drawings of existing conditions on the proposed compensation stream, including the identification of functional and physical deficiencies for which the measures are proposed, and summary of geomorphologic measurements (e.g., stream width, entrenchment ratio, width-depth ratio, sinuosity, slope, substrate, etc.); a site access plan; a monitoring plan, including a monitoring and reporting schedule, monitoring design and methodologies for success, proposed success criteria, location of photo-monitoring stations, vegetation sampling points, survey points, bank pins, scour chains, and reference streams; an abatement and control plan for undesirable plant species; an erosion and sedimentation control plan, if appropriate; a construction schedule; a plan-view drawing depicting the pattern and all compensation measures being employed; a profile drawing; cross-sectional drawing or drawings of the proposed compensation stream; and the final protective mechanism for the protection of the compensation site or sites, including all surface waters and buffer areas within its boundaries.

(3) The approved protective mechanism. The protective mechanism shall be recorded in the chain of title to the property, or an equivalent instrument for government-owned lands, and proof of recordation shall be submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality prior to commencing impacts in surface waters.

6. The following criteria shall apply to permittee-responsible wetland or stream compensation:

a. The vegetation used shall be native species common to the area, shall be suitable for growth in local wetland or riparian conditions, and shall be from areas within the same or adjacent U.S. Department of Agriculture Plant Hardiness Zone or Natural Resources Conservation Service Land Resource Region as that of the project site. Planting of woody plants shall occur when vegetation is normally dormant, unless otherwise approved in the final wetlands or stream compensation plan or plans.

b. All work in permitted impact areas shall cease if compensation site construction has not commenced within 180 days of commencement of project construction, unless otherwise authorized by the board.

c. The Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified in writing prior to the initiation of construction activities at the compensation site.

d. Point sources of stormwater runoff shall be prohibited from entering a wetland compensation site prior to treatment by appropriate best management practices. Appropriate best management practices may include sediment traps, grassed waterways, vegetated filter strips, debris screens, oil and grease separators, or forebays.

e. The success of the compensation shall be based on meeting the success criteria established in the approved final compensation plan.

f. If the wetland or stream compensation area fails to meet the specified success criteria in a particular monitoring year, other than the final monitoring year, the reasons for this failure shall be determined and a corrective action plan shall be submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality for approval with or before that year's monitoring report. The corrective action plan shall contain at a minimum the proposed actions, a schedule for those actions, and a monitoring plan, and shall be implemented by the permittee in accordance with the approved schedule. Should significant changes be necessary to ensure success, the required monitoring cycle shall begin again, with monitoring year one being the year that the changes are complete, as confirmed by the Department of Environmental Quality. If the wetland or stream compensation area fails to meet the specified success criteria by the final monitoring year or if the wetland or stream compensation area has not met the stated restoration goals, reasons for this failure shall be determined and a corrective action plan, including proposed actions, a schedule, and a monitoring plan, shall be submitted with the final year monitoring report for Department of Environmental Quality approval. Corrective action shall be implemented by the permittee in accordance with the approved schedule. Annual monitoring shall be required to continue until two sequential, annual reports indicate that all criteria have been successfully satisfied and the site has met the overall restoration goals (e.g., that corrective actions were successful).

g. The surveyed wetland boundary for the compensation site shall be based on the results of the hydrology, soils, and vegetation monitoring data and shall be shown on the site plan. Calculation of total wetland acreage shall be based on that boundary at the end of the monitoring cycle. Data shall be submitted by December 31 of the final monitoring year.

h. Herbicides or algicides shall not be used in or immediately adjacent to the compensation site or sites without prior authorization by the board. All vegetation removal shall be done by manual means, unless authorized by the Department of Environmental Quality in advance.

B. Impact site construction monitoring.

1. Construction activities authorized by this permit that are within impact areas shall be monitored and documented. The monitoring shall consist of:

a. Preconstruction photographs taken at each impact area prior to initiation of activities within impact areas. Photographs shall remain on the project site and depict the impact area and the nonimpacted surface waters immediately adjacent to and downgradient of each impact area. Each photograph shall be labeled to include the following information: permit number, impact area number, date and time of the photograph, name of the person taking the photograph, photograph orientation, and photograph subject description.

b. Site inspections shall be conducted by the permittee or the permittee's qualified designee once every calendar month during activities within impact areas. Monthly inspections shall be conducted in the following areas: all authorized permanent and temporary impact areas; all avoided surface waters, including wetlands, stream channels, and open water; surface water areas within 50 feet of any land disturbing activity and within the project or right-of-way limits; and all on-site permanent preservation areas required under this permit. Observations shall be recorded on the inspection form provided by the Department of Environmental Quality. The form shall be completed in its entirety for each monthly inspection and shall be kept on site and made available for review by the Department of Environmental Quality staff upon request during normal business hours. Inspections are not required during periods of no activity within impact areas.

2. Monitoring of water quality parameters shall be conducted during permanent relocation of perennial streams through new channels in the manner noted below. The permittee shall report violations of water quality standards to the Department of Environmental Quality in accordance with the procedures in 9VAC25-670-100 Part II E. Corrective measures and additional monitoring may be required if water quality standards are not met. Reporting shall not be required if water quality standards are not violated.

a. A sampling station shall be located upstream and immediately downstream of the relocated channel.

b. Temperature, pH, and dissolved oxygen (D.O.) measurements shall be taken every 30 minutes for at least two hours at each station prior to opening the new channels and immediately before opening new channels.

c. Temperature, pH, and D.O. readings shall be taken after opening the channels and every 30 minutes for at least three hours at each station.

C. Permittee-responsible wetland compensation site monitoring.

1. An as-built ground survey, or an aerial survey provided by a firm specializing in aerial surveys, shall be conducted for the entire compensation site or sites including invert elevations for all water elevation control structures and spot elevations throughout the site or sites. Aerial surveys shall include the variation from actual ground conditions, such as +/- 0.2 feet. Either type of survey shall be certified by a licensed surveyor or by a registered professional engineer to conform to the design plans. The survey shall be submitted within 60 days of completing compensation site construction. Changes or deviations in the as-built survey or aerial survey shall be shown on the survey and explained in writing.

2. Photographs shall be taken at the compensation site or sites from the permanent markers identified in the final compensation plan, and established to ensure that the same locations and view directions at the site or sites are monitored in each monitoring period. These photographs shall be taken after the initial planting and at a time specified in the final compensation plan during every monitoring year.

3. Compensation site monitoring shall begin on the first day of the first complete growing season (monitoring year 1) after wetland compensation site construction activities, including planting, have been completed. Monitoring shall be required for monitoring years 1, 2, 3, and 5, unless otherwise approved by the Department of Environmental Quality. In all cases, if all success criteria have not been met in the fifth monitoring year, then monitoring shall be required for each consecutive year until two annual sequential reports indicate that all criteria have been successfully satisfied.

4. The establishment of wetland hydrology shall be measured during the growing season, with the location and number of monitoring wells, and frequency of monitoring for each site, set forth in the final monitoring plan. Hydrology monitoring well data shall be accompanied by precipitation data, including rainfall amounts, either from on site, or from the closest weather station. Once the wetland hydrology success criteria have been satisfied for a particular monitoring year, weekly monitoring may be discontinued for the remainder of that monitoring year following Department of Environmental Quality approval. After a period of three monitoring years, the permittee may request that hydrology monitoring be discontinued, providing that adequate hydrology has been established and maintained. Hydrology monitoring shall not be discontinued without written approval from the Department of Environmental Quality.

5. The presence of hydric soils or soils under hydric conditions shall be evaluated in accordance with the final compensation plan.

6. The establishment of wetland vegetation shall be in accordance with the final compensation plan. Monitoring shall take place in August, September, or October during the growing season of each monitoring year, unless authorized in the monitoring plan.

7. The presence of undesirable plant species shall be documented.

8. All wetland compensation monitoring reports shall be submitted in accordance with 9VAC25-670-100 Part II E 6.

D. Permittee-responsible stream compensation and monitoring.

1. Riparian buffer restoration activities shall be detailed in the final compensation plan and shall include, as appropriate, the planting of a variety of native species currently growing in the site area, including appropriate seed mixtures and woody species that are bare root, balled, or burlapped. A minimum buffer width of 50 feet, measured from the top of the stream bank at bankfull elevation landward on both sides of the stream, shall be required where practical.

2. The installation of root wads, vanes, and other instream structures, shaping of the stream banks, and channel relocation shall be completed in the dry whenever practicable.

3. Livestock access to the stream and designated riparian buffer shall be limited to the greatest extent practicable.

4. Stream channel restoration activities shall be conducted in the dry or during low flow conditions. When site conditions prohibit access from the streambank or upon prior authorization from the Department of Environmental Quality, heavy equipment may be authorized for use within the stream channel.

5. Photographs shall be taken at the compensation site from the vicinity of the permanent photo-monitoring stations identified in the final compensation plan. The photograph orientation shall remain constant during all monitoring events. At a minimum, photographs shall be taken from the center of the stream, facing downstream, with a sufficient number of photographs to view the entire length of the restoration site. Photographs shall document the completed restoration conditions. Photographs shall be taken prior to site activities, during instream and riparian compensation construction activities, within one week of completion of activities, and during at least one day of each monitoring year to depict restored conditions.

6. An as-built ground survey, or an aerial survey provided by a firm specializing in aerial surveys, shall be conducted for the entire compensation site or sites. Aerial surveys shall include the variation from actual ground conditions, such as +/- 0.2 feet. The survey shall be certified by the licensed surveyor or by a registered, professional engineer to conform to the design plans. The survey shall be submitted within 60 days of completing compensation site construction. Changes or deviations from the final compensation plans in the as-built survey or aerial survey shall be shown on the survey and explained in writing.

7. Compensation site monitoring shall begin on day one of the first complete growing season (monitoring year 1) after stream compensation site construction activities, including planting, have been completed. Monitoring shall be required for monitoring years 1 and 2, unless otherwise approved by the Department of Environmental Quality. In all cases, if all success criteria have not been met in the final monitoring year, then monitoring shall be required for each consecutive year until two annual sequential reports indicate that all criteria have been successfully satisfied.

8. All stream compensation site monitoring reports shall be submitted in accordance with 9VAC25-670-100 Part II E 6.

E. Reporting.

1. Written communications required by this VWP general permit shall be submitted to the appropriate Department of Environmental Quality office. The VWP general permit tracking number shall be included on all correspondence.

2. The Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified in writing prior to the start of construction activities at the first permitted impact area.

3. A construction status update form provided by the Department of Environmental Quality shall be completed and submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality twice per year for the duration of coverage under a VWP general permit. Forms completed in June shall be submitted by or on July 10, and forms completed in December shall be submitted by or on January 10. The form shall include reference to the VWP permit tracking number and one of the following statements for each authorized surface water impact location:

a. Construction activities have not yet started;

b. Construction activities have started;

c. Construction activities have started but are currently inactive; or

d. Construction activities are complete.

4. The Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified in writing within 30 days following the completion of all activities in all authorized impact areas.

5. The Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified in writing prior to the initiation of activities at the permittee-responsible compensation site. The notification shall include a projected schedule of activities and construction completion.

6. All permittee-responsible compensation site monitoring reports shall be submitted annually by December 31, with the exception of the last year, in which case the report shall be submitted at least 60 days prior to the expiration of the general permit, unless otherwise approved by the Department of Environmental Quality.

a. All wetland compensation site monitoring reports shall include, as applicable, the following:

(1) General description of the site including a site location map identifying photo-monitoring stations, vegetative and soil monitoring stations, monitoring wells, and wetland zones.

(2) Summary of activities completed during the monitoring year, including alterations or maintenance conducted at the site.

(3) Description of monitoring methods.

(4) Analysis of all hydrology information, including monitoring well data, precipitation data, and gauging data from streams or other open water areas, as set forth in the final compensation plan.

(5) Evaluation of hydric soils or soils under hydric conditions, as appropriate.

(6) Analysis of all vegetative community information, including woody and herbaceous species, both planted and volunteers, as set forth in the final compensation plan.

(7) Photographs labeled with the permit number, the name of the compensation site, the photo-monitoring station number, the photograph orientation, the date and time of the photograph, the name of the person taking the photograph, and a brief description of the photograph subject. This information shall be provided as a separate attachment to each photograph, if necessary. Photographs taken after the initial planting shall be included in the first monitoring report after planting is complete.

(8) Discussion of wildlife or signs of wildlife observed at the compensation site.

(9) Comparison of site conditions from the previous monitoring year and reference site.

(10) Discussion of corrective measures or maintenance activities to control undesirable species, to repair damaged water control devices, or to replace damaged planted vegetation.

(11) Corrective action plan that includes proposed actions, a schedule, and monitoring plan.

b. All stream compensation site monitoring reports shall include, as applicable, the following:

(1) General description of the site including a site location map identifying photo-monitoring stations and monitoring stations.

(2) Summary of activities completed during the monitoring year, including alterations or maintenance conducted at the site.

(3) Description of monitoring methods.

(4) Evaluation and discussion of the monitoring results in relation to the success criteria and overall goals of compensation.

(5) Photographs shall be labeled with the permit number, the name of the compensation site, the photo-monitoring station number, the photograph orientation, the date and time of the photograph, the name of the person taking the photograph, and a brief description of the photograph subject. Photographs taken prior to compensation site construction activities, during instream and riparian restoration activities, and within one week of completion of activities shall be included in the first monitoring report.

(6) Discussion of alterations, maintenance, or major storm events resulting in significant change in stream profile or cross section, and corrective actions conducted at the stream compensation site.

(7) Documentation of undesirable plant species and summary of abatement and control measures.

(8) Summary of wildlife or signs of wildlife observed at the compensation site.

(9) Comparison of site conditions from the previous monitoring year and reference site, and as-built survey, if applicable.

(10) Corrective action plan that includes proposed actions, a schedule and monitoring plan.

(11) Additional submittals that were approved by the Department of Environmental Quality in the final compensation plan.

7. The permittee shall notify the Department of Environmental Quality in writing when unusual or potentially complex conditions are encountered which require debris removal or involve potentially toxic substance. Measures to remove the obstruction, material, or toxic substance or to change the location of a structure are prohibited until approved by the Department of Environmental Quality.

8. The permittee shall report fish kills or spills of oil or fuel immediately upon discovery. If spills or fish kills occur between the hours of 8:15 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, the appropriate Department of Environmental Quality regional office shall be notified; otherwise, the Department of Emergency Management shall be notified at 1-800-468-8892.

9. Violations of state water quality standards shall be reported to the appropriate Department of Environmental Quality office no later than the end of the business day following discovery.

10. The permittee shall notify the Department of Environmental Quality no later than the end of the third business day following the discovery of additional impacts to surface waters including wetlands, stream channels, and open water that are not authorized by the Department of Environmental Quality or to any required preservation areas. The notification shall include photographs, estimated acreage or linear footage of impacts, and a description of the impacts.

11. Submittals required by this VWP general permit shall contain the following signed certification statement:

"I certify under penalty of law that this document and all attachments were prepared under my direction or supervision in accordance with a system designed to assure that qualified personnel properly gather and evaluate the information submitted. Based on my inquiry of the person or persons who manage the system, or those persons directly responsible for gathering the information, the information submitted is, to the best of my knowledge and belief, true, accurate, and complete. I am aware that there are significant penalties for submitting false information, including the possibility of fine and imprisonment for knowing violation."

Part III. Conditions Applicable to All VWP General Permits.

A. Duty to comply. The permittee shall comply with all conditions, limitations, and other requirements of the VWP general permit; any requirements in coverage granted under this VWP general permit; the Clean Water Act, as amended; and the State Water Control Law and regulations adopted pursuant to it. Any VWP general permit violation or noncompliance is a violation of the Clean Water Act and State Water Control Law and is grounds for (i) enforcement action, (ii) VWP general permit coverage termination for cause, (iii) VWP general permit coverage revocation, (iv) denial of application for coverage, or (v) denial of an application for a modification to VWP general permit coverage. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to relieve the permittee of the duty to comply with all applicable federal and state statutes, regulations, and toxic standards and prohibitions.

B. Duty to mitigate. The permittee shall take all reasonable steps to minimize or prevent impacts in violation of the VWP general permit which may have a reasonable likelihood of adversely affecting human health or the environment.

C. Reopener. This VWP general permit may be reopened to modify its conditions when the circumstances on which the previous VWP general permit was based have materially and substantially changed, or special studies conducted by the board or the permittee show material and substantial change since the time the VWP general permit was issued and thereby constitute cause for revoking and reissuing the VWP general permit.

D. Compliance with state and federal law. Compliance with this VWP general permit constitutes compliance with the VWP permit requirements of the State Water Control Law. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to preclude the institution of any legal action under or relieve the permittee from any responsibilities, liabilities, or other penalties established pursuant to any other state law or regulation or under the authority preserved by § 510 of the Clean Water Act.

E. Property rights. The issuance of this VWP general permit does not convey property rights in either real or personal property or any exclusive privileges, nor does it authorize injury to private property, any invasion of personal property rights, or any infringement of federal, state, or local laws or regulations.

F. Severability. The provisions of this VWP general permit are severable.

G. Inspection and entry. Upon presentation of credentials, the permittee shall allow the board or any duly authorized agent of the board, at reasonable times and under reasonable circumstances, to enter upon the permittee's property, public or private, and have access to inspect and copy any records that must be kept as part of the VWP general permit conditions; to inspect any facilities, operations, or practices (including monitoring and control equipment) regulated or required under the VWP general permit; and to sample or monitor any substance, parameter, or activity for the purpose of assuring compliance with the conditions of the VWP general permit or as otherwise authorized by law. For the purpose of this section, the time for inspection shall be deemed reasonable during regular business hours. Nothing contained herein shall make an inspection time unreasonable during an emergency.

H. Transferability of VWP general permit coverage. VWP general permit coverage may be transferred to another permittee when all of the criteria listed in this subsection are met. On the date of the VWP general permit coverage transfer, the transferred VWP general permit coverage shall be as fully effective as if it had been granted directly to the new permittee.

1. The current permittee notifies the board of the proposed transfer of the general permit coverage and provides a written agreement between the current and new permittees containing a specific date of transfer of VWP general permit responsibility, coverage, and liability to the new permittee, or that the current permittee will retain such responsibility, coverage, or liability, including liability for compliance with the requirements of enforcement activities related to the authorized activity.

2. The board does not within the 15 days notify the current and new permittees of its intent to modify or revoke and reissue the VWP general permit.

I. Notice of planned change. VWP general permit coverage may be modified subsequent to issuance in accordance with 9VAC25-670-80.

J. VWP general permit coverage termination for cause. VWP general permit coverage is subject to termination for cause by the board after public notice and opportunity for a hearing pursuant to § 62.1-44.15:02 of the Code of Virginia. Reasons for termination for cause are as follows:

1. Noncompliance by the permittee with any provision of this chapter, any condition of the VWP general permit, or any requirement in general permit coverage;

2. The permittee's failure in the application or during the process of granting VWP general permit coverage to disclose fully all relevant facts or the permittee's misrepresentation of any relevant facts at any time;

3. The permittee's violation of a special or judicial order;

4. A determination by the board that the authorized activity endangers human health or the environment and can be regulated to acceptable levels by a modification to the VWP general permit coverage or a termination;

5. A change in any condition that requires either a temporary or permanent reduction or elimination of any activity controlled by the VWP general permit; or

6. A determination that the authorized activity has ceased and that the compensation for unavoidable adverse impacts has been successfully completed.

K. The board may terminate VWP general permit coverage without cause when the permittee is no longer a legal entity due to death or dissolution or when a company is no longer authorized to conduct business in the Commonwealth. The termination shall be effective 30 days after notice of the proposed termination is sent to the last known address of the permittee or registered agent, unless the permittee objects within that time. If the permittee does object during that period, the board shall follow the applicable procedures for termination under §§ 62.1-44.15:02 and 62.1-44.15:25 of the Code of Virginia.

L. VWP general permit coverage termination by consent. The permittee shall submit a request for termination by consent within 30 days of completing or canceling all authorized activities requiring notification under 9VAC25-670-50 A and all compensatory mitigation requirements. When submitted for project completion, the request for termination by consent shall constitute a notice of project completion in accordance with 9VAC25-210-130 F. The director may accept this termination of coverage on behalf of the board. The permittee shall submit the following information:

1. Name, mailing address, and telephone number;

2. Name and location of the activity;

3. The VWP general permit tracking number; and

4. One of the following certifications:

a. For project completion:

"I certify under penalty of law that all activities and any required compensatory mitigation authorized by the VWP general permit and general permit coverage have been completed. I understand that by submitting this notice of termination I am no longer authorized to perform activities in surface waters in accordance with the VWP general permit and general permit coverage, and that performing activities in surface waters is unlawful where the activity is not authorized by the VWP permit or coverage, unless otherwise excluded from obtaining coverage. I also understand that the submittal of this notice does not release me from liability for any violations of the VWP general permit or coverage."

b. For project cancellation:

"I certify under penalty of law that the activities and any required compensatory mitigation authorized by the VWP general permit and general permit coverage will not occur. I understand that by submitting this notice of termination I am no longer authorized to perform activities in surface waters in accordance with the VWP general permit and general permit coverage, and that performing activities in surface waters is unlawful where the activity is not authorized by the VWP permit or coverage, unless otherwise excluded from obtaining coverage. I also understand that the submittal of this notice does not release me from liability for any violations of the VWP general permit or coverage, nor does it allow me to resume the authorized activities without reapplication and coverage."

c. For events beyond permittee control, the permittee shall provide a detailed explanation of the events, to be approved by the Department of Environmental Quality, and the following certification statement:

"I certify under penalty of law that the activities or the required compensatory mitigation authorized by the VWP general permit and general permit coverage have changed as the result of events beyond my control (see attached). I understand that by submitting this notice of termination I am no longer authorized to perform activities in surface waters in accordance with the VWP general permit and general permit coverage, and that performing activities in surface waters is unlawful where the activity is not authorized by the VWP permit or coverage, unless otherwise excluded from obtaining coverage. I also understand that the submittal of this notice does not release me from liability for any violations of the VWP general permit or coverage, nor does it allow me to resume the authorized activities without reapplication and coverage."

M. Civil and criminal liability. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to relieve the permittee from civil and criminal penalties for noncompliance.

N. Oil and hazardous substance liability. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to preclude the institution of legal action or relieve the permittee from any responsibilities, liabilities, or penalties to which the permittee is or may be subject under § 311 of the Clean Water Act or §§ 62.1-44.34:14 through 62.1-44.34:23 of the State Water Control Law.

O. Duty to cease or confine activity. It shall not be a defense for a permittee in an enforcement action that it would have been necessary to halt or reduce the activity for which VWP general permit coverage has been granted in order to maintain compliance with the conditions of the VWP general permit or coverage.

P. Duty to provide information.

1. The permittee shall furnish to the board any information that the board may request to determine whether cause exists for modifying, revoking, or terminating VWP permit coverage or to determine compliance with the VWP general permit or general permit coverage. The permittee shall also furnish to the board, upon request, copies of records required to be kept by the permittee.

2. Plans, maps, conceptual reports, and other relevant information shall be submitted as required by the board prior to commencing construction.

Q. Monitoring and records requirements.

1. Monitoring of parameters, other than pollutants, shall be conducted according to approved analytical methods as specified in the VWP general permit. Analysis of pollutants will be conducted according to 40 CFR Part 136 (2000), Guidelines Establishing Test Procedures for the Analysis of Pollutants.

2. Samples and measurements taken for the purpose of monitoring shall be representative of the monitored activity.

3. The permittee shall retain records of all monitoring information, including all calibration and maintenance records and all original strip chart or electronic recordings for continuous monitoring instrumentation, copies of all reports required by the VWP general permit, and records of all data used to complete the application for coverage under the VWP general permit, for a period of at least three years from the date of general permit expiration. This period may be extended by request of the board at any time.

4. Records of monitoring information shall include, as appropriate:

a. The date, exact place, and time of sampling or measurements;

b. The name of the individuals who performed the sampling or measurements;

c. The date and time the analyses were performed;

d. The name of the individuals who performed the analyses;

e. The analytical techniques or methods supporting the information such as observations, readings, calculations, and bench data used;

f. The results of such analyses; and

g. Chain of custody documentation.

R. Unauthorized discharge of pollutants. Except in compliance with this VWP general permit, it shall be unlawful for the permittee to:

1. Discharge into state waters sewage, industrial wastes, other wastes, or any noxious or deleterious substances;

2. Excavate in a wetland;

3. Otherwise alter the physical, chemical, or biological properties of state waters and make them detrimental to the public health, to animal or aquatic life, or to the uses of such waters for domestic or industrial consumption, for recreation, or for other uses; or

4. On and after October 1, 2001, conduct the following activities in a wetland:

a. New activities to cause draining that significantly alters or degrades existing wetland acreage or functions;

b. Filling or dumping;

c. Permanent flooding or impounding; or

d. New activities that cause significant alteration or degradation of existing wetland acreage or functions.

S. Duty to reapply. Any permittee desiring to continue a previously authorized activity after the expiration date of the VWP general permit shall comply with the provisions in 9VAC25-670-27.

9VAC25-680-50

9VAC25-680-50. Notification.

A. Notification to the board will be required prior to commencing construction, as follows:

1. When the Virginia Department of Transportation is the applicant for coverage under this VWP general permit, the notification requirements shall be in accordance with this section and 9VAC25-680-60, unless otherwise authorized by the Department of Environmental Quality.

2. An application for coverage for proposed, permanent nontidal wetland or open water impacts greater than one-tenth acre or for proposed permanent nontidal stream bed impacts greater than 300 linear feet shall include all information pursuant to 9VAC25-680-60 B. Compensatory mitigation may be required for all permanent impacts.

3. An application for coverage for proposed, permanent nontidal wetland or open water impacts up to one-tenth acre or for proposed, permanent nontidal stream bed impacts up to 300 linear feet shall be submitted in accordance with either subdivision 3 a or 3 b of this subsection:

a. For any proposed project in wetlands, open water, streams, or compensatory mitigation sites that are under a deed restriction, conservation easement, declaration of restrictive covenant, or other land use protective instrument (hereafter "protected areas"), when such restriction, easement, covenant, or instrument is the result of a federal or state permit action and is specific to activities in wetlands and compensatory mitigation sites, the application shall include all of the information required by 9VAC25-680-60 B. Compensatory mitigation may be required for all permanent impacts.

b. For all other projects, the application shall include the information required by subdivisions 1 through 7, 11, 12, 15, and 16 of 9VAC25-680-60 B and documentation that verifies the quantity and type of impacts. Compensatory mitigation may be required for all permanent impacts once the notification limits of one-tenth acre wetlands or open water, or 300 linear feet of stream bed, are exceeded, and if required, the application shall include the information in 9VAC25-680-60 B 13.

B. The Department of Environmental Quality-approved application forms shall serve as an application for a VWP permit or VWP general permit coverage.

C. The board will determine whether the proposed activity requires coordination with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, and the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Wildlife Resources regarding the presence of federal or state listed threatened and endangered species or designated critical habitat. Based upon consultation with these agencies, the board may deny application for coverage under this general permit. The applicant may also consult with these agencies prior to submitting an application. Species or habitat information that the applicant provides will assist the Department of Environmental Quality in reviewing and processing the application.

9VAC25-680-60

9VAC25-680-60. Application.

A. Applications shall be filed with the board as follows:

1. The applicant shall file a complete application in accordance with 9VAC25-680-50 and this section for coverage under this VWP general permit for impacts to surface waters from linear transportation projects.

2. The VDOT may use its monthly IACM process for submitting applications.

B. A complete application for VWP general permit coverage, at a minimum, consists of the following information, if applicable to the project:

1. The applicant's legal name, mailing address, telephone number, and if applicable, electronic mail address and fax number.

2. If different from the applicant, legal name, mailing address, telephone number, and if applicable, electronic mail address and fax number of property owner.

3. If applicable, authorized agent's name, mailing address, telephone number, and if applicable, fax number and electronic mail address.

4. The existing VWP general permit tracking number, if applicable.

5. Project name and proposed project schedule.

6. The following information for the project site location, and any related permittee-responsible compensatory mitigation site:

a. The physical street address, nearest street, or nearest route number; city or county; zip code; and if applicable, parcel number of the site or sites.

b. Name of the impacted water body or water bodies, or receiving waters, as applicable, at the site or sites.

c. The latitude and longitude to the nearest second at the center of the site or sites.

d. The fourth order subbasin, as defined by the hydrologic unit boundaries of the National Watershed Boundary Dataset, for the site or sites.

e. A detailed map depicting the location of the site or sites, including the project boundary and all existing preservation areas on the site or sites. The map (e.g., a U.S. Geologic Survey topographic quadrangle map) should be of sufficient detail to easily locate the site or sites for inspection.

7. A narrative description of the project, including project purpose and need.

8. Plan-view drawing or drawings of the project site sufficient to assess the project, including at a minimum the following:

a. North arrow, graphic scale, and existing and proposed topographic or bathymetric contours.

b. Limits of proposed impacts to surface waters.

c. Location of all existing and proposed structures.

d. All delineated wetlands and all jurisdictional surface waters on the site, including the Cowardin classification (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested) for those surface waters and waterway name, if designated; ebb and flood or direction of flow; and ordinary high water mark in nontidal areas.

e. The limits of Chesapeake Bay Resource Protection Areas (RPAs) as field-verified by the applicant, and if available, the limits as approved by the locality in which the project site is located, unless the proposed use is exempt from the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Area Designation and Management Regulations (9VAC25-830).

f. The limits of any areas that are under a deed restriction, conservation easement, restrictive covenant, or other land use protective instrument (i.e., protected areas).

9. Cross-sectional and profile drawing or drawings. Cross-sectional drawing or drawings of each proposed impact area shall include at a minimum a graphic scale, existing structures, existing and proposed elevations, limits of surface water areas, ebb and flood or direction of flow (if applicable), ordinary high water mark in nontidal areas, impact limits, and location of all existing and proposed structures. Profile drawing or drawings with this information may be required on a case-by-case basis to demonstrate minimization of impacts. Any application that proposes piping or culverting stream flows shall provide a longitudinal profile of the pipe or culvert position and stream bed thalweg, or shall provide spot elevations of the stream thalweg at the beginning and end of the pipe or culvert, extending to a minimum of 10 feet beyond the limits of proposed impact.

10. Materials assessment. Upon request by the board, the applicant shall provide evidence or certification that the material is free from toxic contaminants prior to disposal or that the dredging activity will not cause or contribute to a violation of water quality standards during dredging. The applicant may be required to conduct grain size and composition analyses, tests for specific parameters or chemical constituents, or elutriate tests on the dredge material.

11. A narrative description of all impacts proposed to surface waters, including the type of activity to be conducted in surface waters and any physical alteration to surface waters. Surface water impacts shall be identified as follows:

a. Wetland impacts identified according to their Cowardin classification (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested); and for each classification, the individual impacts quantified in square feet to the nearest whole number, cumulatively summed in square feet, and then the sum converted to acres and rounded to two decimal places using commonly accepted arithmetic principles of rounding.

b. Individual stream impacts (i) quantified by length in linear feet to the nearest whole number and by average width in feet to the nearest whole number; (ii) quantified in square feet to the nearest whole number; and (iii) when compensatory mitigation is required, the impacts identified according to the assessed type using the Unified Stream Methodology.

c. Open water impacts identified according to their Cowardin classification; and for each type, the individual impacts quantified in square feet to the nearest whole number, cumulatively summed in square feet, and then the sum converted to acres and rounded to two decimal places using commonly accepted arithmetic principles of rounding.

d. A copy of the approved jurisdictional determination when available, or when unavailable, (i) the preliminary jurisdictional determination from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), or DEQ or (ii) other correspondence from the USACE, NRCS, or DEQ indicating approval of the boundary of applicable jurisdictional surface waters, including wetlands data sheets if applicable.

e. A delineation map that (i) depicts the geographic area or areas of all surface water boundaries delineated in accordance with 9VAC25-210-45 and confirmed in accordance with the jurisdictional determination process; (ii) identifies such areas in accordance with subdivisions 11 a, 11 b, and 11 c of this subsection; and (iii) quantifies and identifies any other surface waters according to their Cowardin classification (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested) or similar terminology.

12. An alternatives analysis for the proposed project detailing the specific on-site measures taken during project design and development to first avoid and then minimize impacts to surface waters to the maximum extent practicable in accordance with the Guidelines for Specification of Disposal Sites for Dredged or Fill Material, 40 CFR Part 230. Avoidance and minimization includes, but is not limited to, the specific on-site measures taken to reduce the size, scope, configuration, or density of the proposed project, including review of alternative sites where required for the project, which would avoid or result in less adverse impact to surface waters, and documentation demonstrating the reason the applicant determined less damaging alternatives are not practicable. The analysis shall demonstrate to the satisfaction of the board that avoidance and minimization opportunities have been identified and measures have been applied to the proposed activity such that the proposed activity in terms of impacts to state waters and fish and wildlife resources is the least environmentally damaging practicable alternative.

13. A compensatory mitigation plan to achieve no net loss of wetland acreage and functions or stream functions and water quality benefits.

a. If permittee-responsible compensation is proposed for wetland impacts, a conceptual wetland compensatory mitigation plan must be submitted in order for an application to be deemed complete and shall include at a minimum (i) the goals and objectives in terms of replacement of wetland acreage and functions; (ii) a detailed location map including latitude and longitude to the nearest second and the fourth order subbasin, as defined by the hydrologic unit boundaries of the National Watershed Boundary Dataset, at the center of the site; (iii) a description of the surrounding land use; (iv) a hydrologic analysis including a draft water budget for nontidal areas based on expected monthly inputs and outputs that will project water level elevations for a typical year, a dry year, and a wet year; (v) groundwater elevation data, if available, or the proposed location of groundwater monitoring wells to collect these data; (vi) wetland delineation confirmation, data sheets, and maps for existing surface water areas on the proposed site or sites; (vii) a conceptual grading plan; (viii) a conceptual planting scheme including suggested plant species and zonation of each vegetation type proposed; (ix) a description of existing soils including general information on both topsoil and subsoil conditions, permeability, and the need for soil amendments; (x) a draft design of any water control structures; (xi) inclusion of buffer areas; (xii) a description of any structures and features necessary for the success of the site; (xiii) the schedule for compensatory mitigation site construction; and (xiv) measures for the control of undesirable species.

b. If permittee-responsible compensation is proposed for stream impacts, a conceptual stream compensatory mitigation plan must be submitted in order for an application to be deemed complete and shall include at a minimum (i) the goals and objectives in terms of water quality benefits and replacement of stream functions; (ii) a detailed location map including the latitude and longitude to the nearest second and the fourth order subbasin, as defined by the hydrologic unit boundaries of the National Watershed Boundary Dataset, at the center of the site; (iii) a description of the surrounding land use; (iv) the proposed stream segment restoration locations including plan view and cross-sectional drawings; (v) the stream deficiencies that need to be addressed; (vi) data obtained from a DEQ-approved, stream impact assessment methodology such as the Unified Stream Methodology; (vii) the proposed restoration measures to be employed including channel measurements, proposed design flows, types of instream structures, and conceptual planting scheme; (viii) reference stream data, if available; (ix) inclusion of buffer areas; (x) schedule for restoration activities; and (xi) measures for the control of undesirable species.

c. For any permittee-responsible compensatory mitigation, the conceptual compensatory mitigation plan shall also include a draft of the intended protective mechanism or mechanisms, in accordance with 9VAC25-210-116 B 2, such as, but not limited to, a conservation easement held by a third party in accordance with the Virginia Conservation Easement Act (§ 10.1-1009 et seq. of the Code of Virginia) or the Virginia Open-Space Land Act (§ 10.1-1700 et seq. of the Code of Virginia), a duly recorded declaration of restrictive covenants, or other protective instrument. The draft intended protective mechanism shall contain the information in subdivisions c (1), c (2), and c (3) of this subdivision 13 or in lieu thereof shall describe the intended protective mechanism or mechanisms that contains the information required below:

(1) A provision for access to the site;

(2) The following minimum restrictions: no ditching, land clearing, or discharge of dredge or fill material, and no activity in the area designated as compensatory mitigation area with the exception of maintenance; corrective action measures; or DEQ-approved activities described in the approved final compensatory mitigation plan or long-term management plan; and

(3) A long-term management plan that identifies a long-term steward and adequate financial assurances for long-term management in accordance with the current standard for mitigation banks and in-lieu fee program sites, except that financial assurances will not be necessary for permittee-responsible compensation provided by government agencies on government property. If approved by DEQ, permittee-responsible compensation on government property and long-term protection may be provided through federal facility management plans, integrated natural resources management plans, or other alternate management plans submitted by a government agency or public authority.

d. Any compensatory mitigation plan proposing the purchase of mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program credits shall include the number and type of credits proposed to be purchased and documentation from the approved mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program sponsor of the availability of credits at the time of application.

14. Permit application fee. The applicant will be notified by the board as to the appropriate fee for the project in accordance with 9VAC25-20.

15. A written description and a graphical depiction identifying all upland areas including buffers, wetlands, open water, other surface waters, and compensatory mitigation areas located within the proposed project boundary or permittee-responsible compensatory mitigation areas that are under a deed restriction, conservation easement, restrictive covenant, or other land use protective instrument (i.e., protected areas). Such description and a graphical depiction shall include the nature of the prohibited activities within the protected areas and the limits of Chesapeake Bay Resource Protection Areas (RPAs) as field-verified by the applicant, and if available, the limits as approved by the locality in which the project site is located, unless the proposed use is exempt from the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Area Designation and Management Regulations (9VAC25-830), as additional state or local requirements may apply if the project is located within an RPA.

16. Signature page that has been signed, dated, and certified by the applicant in accordance with 9VAC25-210-100. If the applicant is a business or other organization, the signature must be made by an individual with the authority to bind the business or organization, and the title of the signatory must be provided. The application signature page, either on the copy submitted to the Virginia Marine Resources Commission or to DEQ, must have an original signature. Electronic submittals containing the original signature page, such as that contained in a scanned document file, are acceptable.

C. An analysis of the functions of wetlands proposed to be impacted may be required by DEQ. When required, the method selected for the analysis shall assess water quality or habitat metrics and shall be coordinated with DEQ in advance of conducting the analysis.

1. No analysis shall be required when:

a. Wetland impacts per each single and complete project total 1.00 acre or less; or

b. The proposed compensatory mitigation consists of purchasing mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program credits at standard mitigation ratios of 2:1 for forest, 1.5:1 for scrub-shrub, and 1:1 for emergent, or higher.

2. Analysis shall be required when wetland impacts per each single and complete project total 1.01 acres or more and when any of the following applies:

a. The proposed compensatory mitigation consists of permittee-responsible compensation, including water quality enhancements as replacement for wetlands; or

b. The proposed compensatory mitigation consists of purchasing mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program credits at less than the standard mitigation ratios of 2:1 for forest, 1.5:1 for scrub-shrub, and 1:1 for emergent.

D. Upon receipt of an application from the Department of Transportation for a road or highway construction project by the appropriate DEQ office, the board has 10 business days, pursuant to § 33.2-258 of the Code of Virginia, to review the application and either determine the information requested in subsection B of this section is complete or inform the Department of Transportation that additional information is required to make the application complete. Upon receipt of an application from other applicants for any type of project, the board has 15 days to review the application and either determine the information requested in subsection B of this section is complete or inform the applicant that additional information is required to make the application complete. Pursuant to § 33.2-258 of the Code of Virginia, coverage under this VWP general permit for Department of Transportation road or highway construction projects shall be approved or approved with conditions, or the application shall be denied, within 30 business days of receipt of a complete application. For all other projects, coverage under this VWP general permit shall be approved or approved with conditions, or the application shall be denied, within 45 days of receipt of a complete application. If the board fails to act within the applicable 30 or 45 days on a complete application, coverage under this VWP general permit shall be deemed granted.

1. In evaluating the application, the board shall make an assessment of the impacts associated with the project in combination with other existing or proposed impacts. Application for coverage under this VWP general permit shall be denied if the cumulative impacts will cause or contribute to a significant impairment of state waters or fish and wildlife resources.

2. The board may place additional requirements on a project in order to grant coverage under this VWP general permit. However, the requirements must be consistent with this chapter.

E. Incomplete application.

1. Where an application for general permit coverage is not accepted as complete by the board within the applicable 10 or 15 days of receipt, the board shall require the submission of additional information from the applicant and may suspend processing of any application until such time as the applicant has supplied the requested information and the application is complete. Where the applicant becomes aware that he omitted one or more relevant facts from an application, or submitted incorrect information in an application or in any report to the board, the applicant shall immediately submit such facts or the correct information. A revised application with new information shall be deemed a new application for the purposes of review but shall not require an additional permit application fee.

2. An incomplete permit application for general permit coverage may be administratively withdrawn from processing by the board for failure to provide the required information after 60 days from the date of the latest written information request made by the board. The board shall provide (i) notice to the applicant and (ii) an opportunity for an informal fact-finding proceeding when administratively withdrawing an incomplete application. Resubmittal of an application for the same or similar project, after such time that the original permit application was administratively withdrawn, shall require submittal of an additional permit application fee.

3. An applicant may request a suspension of application review by the board, but requesting a suspension shall not preclude the board from administratively withdrawing an incomplete application. Resubmittal of a permit application for the same or similar project, after such time that the original permit application was administratively withdrawn, shall require submittal of an additional permit application fee.

9VAC25-680-100

9VAC25-680-100. VWP general permit.

VWP GENERAL PERMIT NO. WP3 FOR LINEAR TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS UNDER THE VIRGINIA WATER PROTECTION PERMIT AND THE VIRGINIA STATE WATER CONTROL LAW

Effective date: August 2, 2016
Expiration date: August 1, 2026

In compliance with § 401 of the Clean Water Act, as amended (33 USC § 1341) and the State Water Control Law and regulations adopted pursuant thereto, the board has determined that there is a reasonable assurance that this VWP general permit, if complied with, will protect instream beneficial uses, will not violate applicable water quality standards, and will not cause or contribute to a significant impairment of state waters or fish and wildlife resources. In issuing this VWP general permit, the board has not taken into consideration the structural stability of any proposed activities.

The permanent or temporary impact of up to two acres of nontidal wetlands or open water and up to 1,500 linear feet of nontidal stream bed shall be subject to the provisions of the VWP general permit set forth herein; any requirements in coverage granted under this VWP general permit; the Clean Water Act, as amended; and the State Water Control Law and regulations adopted pursuant to it.

Part I. Special Conditions.

A. Authorized activities.

1. The activities authorized by this chapter shall not cause more than the permanent or temporary impacts of up to two acres of nontidal wetlands or open water and up to 1,500 linear feet of nontidal stream bed. Additional permit requirements as stipulated by the board in the coverage letter, if any, shall be enforceable conditions of this permit.

2. Any changes to the authorized permanent impacts to surface waters shall require a notice of planned change in accordance with 9VAC25-680-80. An application or request for modification to coverage or another VWP permit application may be required.

3. Any changes to the authorized temporary impacts to surface waters shall require written notification to and approval from the Department of Environmental Quality in accordance with 9VAC25-680-80 prior to initiating the impacts and restoration to preexisting conditions in accordance with the conditions of this permit.

4. Modification to compensation requirements may be approved at the request of the permittee when a decrease in the amount of authorized surface waters impacts occurs, provided that the adjusted compensation meets the initial compensation goals.

B. Overall conditions.

1. The activities authorized by this VWP general permit shall be executed in a manner so as to minimize adverse impacts on instream beneficial uses as defined in § 62.1-10 (b) of the Code of Virginia.

2. No activity may substantially disrupt the movement of aquatic life indigenous to the water body, including those species which normally migrate through the area, unless the primary purpose of the activity is to impound water. Pipes and culverts placed in streams must be installed to maintain low flow conditions and shall be countersunk at both inlet and outlet ends of the pipe or culvert, unless specifically approved by the Department of Environmental Quality on a case-by-case basis and as follows: The requirement to countersink does not apply to extensions or maintenance of existing pipes and culverts that are not countersunk, floodplain pipe and culverts being placed above ordinary high water, pipes and culverts being placed on bedrock, or pipes or culverts required to be placed on slopes 5.0% or greater. Bedrock encountered during construction must be identified and approved in advance of a design change where the countersunk condition cannot be met. Pipes and culverts 24 inches or less in diameter shall be countersunk three inches below the natural stream bed elevations, and pipes and culverts greater than 24 inches shall be countersunk at least six inches below the natural stream bed elevations. Hydraulic capacity shall be determined based on the reduced capacity due to the countersunk position. In all stream crossings appropriate measures shall be implemented to minimize any disruption of aquatic life movement.

3. Wet or uncured concrete shall be prohibited from entry into flowing surface waters, unless the area is contained within a cofferdam and the work is performed in the dry or unless otherwise approved by the Department of Environmental Quality. Excess or waste concrete shall not be disposed of in flowing surface waters or washed into flowing surface waters.

4. All fill material shall be clean and free of contaminants in toxic concentrations or amounts in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations.

5. Erosion and sedimentation controls shall be designed in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992. These controls shall be placed prior to clearing and grading and maintained in good working order to minimize impacts to state waters. These controls shall remain in place until the area is stabilized and shall then be removed.

6. Exposed slopes and streambanks shall be stabilized immediately upon completion of work in each permitted impact area. All denuded areas shall be properly stabilized in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992.

7. All construction, construction access (e.g., cofferdams, sheetpiling, and causeways) and demolition activities associated with the project shall be accomplished in a manner that minimizes construction or waste materials from entering surface waters to the maximum extent practicable, unless authorized by this VWP general permit.

8. No machinery may enter flowing waters, unless authorized by this VWP general permit or approved prior to entry by the Department of Environmental Quality.

9. Heavy equipment in temporarily impacted wetland areas shall be placed on mats, geotextile fabric, or other suitable material, to minimize soil disturbance to the maximum extent practicable. Equipment and materials shall be removed immediately upon completion of work.

10. All nonimpacted surface waters and compensatory mitigation areas within 50 feet of authorized activities and within the project or right-of-way limits shall be clearly flagged or marked for the life of the construction activity at that location to preclude unauthorized disturbances to these surface waters and compensatory mitigation areas during construction. The permittee shall notify contractors that no activities are to occur in these marked surface waters.

11. Temporary disturbances to surface waters during construction shall be avoided and minimized to the maximum extent practicable. All temporarily disturbed wetland areas shall be restored to preexisting conditions within 30 days of completing work at each respective temporary impact area, which shall include reestablishing preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable and planting or seeding with appropriate wetland vegetation according to cover type (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested). The permittee shall take all appropriate measures to promote and maintain revegetation of temporarily disturbed wetland areas with wetland vegetation through the second year post-disturbance. All temporarily impacted streams and streambanks shall be restored to their preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable within 30 days following the construction at that stream segment. Streambanks shall be seeded or planted with the same vegetation cover type originally present, including any necessary, supplemental erosion control grasses. Invasive species identified on the Department of Conservation and Recreation's Virginia Invasive Plant Species List shall not be used to the maximum extent practicable or without prior approval from the Department of Environmental Quality.

12. Materials (including fill, construction debris, and excavated and woody materials) temporarily stockpiled in wetlands shall be placed on mats or geotextile fabric, immediately stabilized to prevent entry into state waters, managed such that leachate does not enter state waters, and completely removed within 30 days following completion of that construction activity. Disturbed areas shall be returned to preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable; restored within 30 days following removal of the stockpile; and restored with the same vegetation cover type originally present, including any necessary supplemental erosion control grasses. Invasive species identified on the Department of Conservation and Recreation's Virginia Invasive Plant Species List shall not be used to the maximum extent practicable or without prior approval from the Department of Environmental Quality.

13. Continuous flow of perennial springs shall be maintained by the installation of spring boxes, french drains, or other similar structures.

14. The permittee shall employ measures to prevent spills of fuels or lubricants into state waters.

15. The permittee shall conduct his activities in accordance with the time-of-year restrictions recommended by the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Wildlife Resources, the Virginia Marine Resources Commission, or other interested and affected agencies, as contained, when applicable, in Department of Environmental Quality VWP general permit coverage, and shall ensure that all contractors are aware of the time-of-year restrictions imposed.

16. Water quality standards shall not be violated as a result of the construction activities.

17. If stream channelization or relocation is required, all work in surface waters shall be done in the dry, unless otherwise authorized by the Department of Environmental Quality, and all flows shall be diverted around the channelization or relocation area until the new channel is stabilized. This work shall be accomplished by leaving a plug at the inlet and outlet ends of the new channel during excavation. Once the new channel has been stabilized, flow shall be routed into the new channel by first removing the downstream plug and then the upstream plug. The rerouted stream flow must be fully established before construction activities in the old stream channel can begin.

C. Road crossings.

1. Access roads and associated bridges, pipes, and culverts shall be constructed to minimize the adverse effects on surface waters to the maximum extent practicable. Access roads constructed above preconstruction elevations and contours in surface waters must be bridged, piped, or culverted to maintain surface flows.

2. Installation of road crossings shall occur in the dry via the implementation of cofferdams, sheetpiling, stream diversions, or similar structures.

D. Utility lines.

1. All utility line work in surface waters shall be performed in a manner that minimizes disturbance, and the area must be returned to its preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable and restored within 30 days of completing work in the area, unless otherwise authorized by the Department of Environmental Quality. Restoration shall be the seeding or planting of the same vegetation cover type originally present, including any necessary supplemental erosion control grasses. Invasive species identified on the Department of Conservation and Recreation's Virginia Invasive Plant Species List shall not be used to the maximum extent practicable or without prior approval from the Department of Environmental Quality.

2. Material resulting from trench excavation may be temporarily sidecast into wetlands not to exceed a total of 90 days, provided the material is not placed in a manner such that it is dispersed by currents or other forces.

3. The trench for a utility line cannot be constructed in a manner that drains wetlands (e.g., backfilling with extensive gravel layers creating a french drain effect). For example, utility lines may be backfilled with clay blocks to ensure that the trench does not drain surface waters through which the utility line is installed.

E. Stream modification and stream bank protection.

1. Riprap bank stabilization shall be of an appropriate size and design in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992.

2. Riprap aprons for all outfalls shall be designed in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992.

3. For bank protection activities, the structure and backfill shall be placed as close to the stream bank as practicable. No material shall be placed in excess of the minimum necessary for erosion protection.

4. All stream bank protection structures shall be located to eliminate or minimize impacts to vegetated wetlands to the maximum extent practicable.

5. Asphalt and materials containing asphalt or other toxic substances shall not be used in the construction of submerged sills or breakwaters.

6. Redistribution of existing stream substrate for the purpose of erosion control is prohibited.

7. No material removed from the stream bottom shall be disposed of in surface waters, unless otherwise authorized by this VWP general permit.

F. Dredging.

1. Dredging depths shall be determined and authorized according to the proposed use and controlling depths outside the area to be dredged.

2. Dredging shall be accomplished in a manner that minimizes disturbance of the bottom and minimizes turbidity levels in the water column.

3. If evidence of impaired water quality, such as a fish kill, is observed during the dredging, dredging operations shall cease, and the Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified immediately.

4. Barges used for the transportation of dredge material shall be filled in such a manner to prevent the overflow of dredged materials.

5. Double handling of dredged material in state waters shall not be permitted.

6. For navigation channels the following shall apply:

a. A buffer of four times the depth of the dredge cut shall be maintained between the bottom edge of the design channel and the channelward limit of wetlands, or a buffer of 15 feet shall be maintained from the dredged cut and the channelward edge of wetlands, whichever is greater. This landward limit of buffer shall be flagged and inspected prior to construction.

b. Side slope cuts of the dredging area shall not exceed a two-horizontal-to-one-vertical slope to prevent slumping of material into the dredged area.

7. A dredged material management plan for the designated upland disposal site shall be submitted and approved 30 days prior to initial dredging activity.

8. Pipeline outfalls and spillways shall be located at opposite ends of the dewatering area to allow for maximum retention and settling time. Filter fabric shall be used to line the dewatering area and to cover the outfall pipe to further reduce sedimentation to state waters.

9. The dredge material dewatering area shall be of adequate size to contain the dredge material and to allow for adequate dewatering and settling out of sediment prior to discharge back into state waters.

10. The dredge material dewatering area shall utilize an earthen berm or straw bales covered with filter fabric along the edge of the area to contain the dredged material, filter bags, or other similar filtering practices, any of which shall be properly stabilized prior to placing the dredged material within the containment area.

11. Overtopping of the dredge material containment berms with dredge materials shall be strictly prohibited.

G. Stormwater management facilities.

1. Stormwater management facilities shall be installed in accordance with best management practices and watershed protection techniques (e.g., vegetated buffers, siting considerations to minimize adverse effects to aquatic resources, bioengineering methods incorporated into the facility design to benefit water quality and minimize adverse effects to aquatic resources) that provide for long-term aquatic resources protection and enhancement, to the maximum extent practicable.

2. Compensation for unavoidable impacts shall not be allowed within maintenance areas of stormwater management facilities.

3. Maintenance activities within stormwater management facilities shall not require additional permit coverage or compensation, provided that the maintenance activities do not exceed the original contours of the facility, as approved and constructed, and is accomplished in designated maintenance areas as indicated in the facility maintenance or design plan or when unavailable, an alternative plan approved by the Department of Environmental Quality.

Part II. Construction and Compensation Requirements, Monitoring and Reporting.

A. Minimum compensation requirements.

1. The permittee shall provide any required compensation for impacts in accordance with the conditions in this VWP general permit, the coverage letter, and the chapter promulgating the general permit. For all compensation that requires a protective mechanism, including preservation of surface waters or buffers, the permittee shall record the approved protective mechanism in the chain of title to the property, or an equivalent instrument for government-owned lands, and proof of recordation shall be submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality prior to commencing impacts in surface waters.

2. Compensation options that may be considered under this VWP general permit shall meet the criteria in 9VAC25-210-116 and 9VAC25-680-70.

3. The permittee-responsible compensation site or sites depicted in the conceptual compensation plan submitted with the application shall constitute the compensation site. A site change may require a modification to coverage.

4. For compensation involving the purchase of mitigation bank credits or the purchase of in-lieu fee program credits, the permittee shall not initiate work in permitted impact areas until documentation of the mitigation bank credit purchase or of the in-lieu fee program credit purchase has been submitted to and received by the Department of Environmental Quality.

5. The final compensatory mitigation plan shall be submitted to and approved by the board prior to a construction activity in permitted impact areas. The board shall review and provide written comments on the final plan within 30 days of receipt or it shall be deemed approved. The final plan as approved by the board shall be an enforceable requirement of any coverage under this VWP general permit. Deviations from the approved final plan shall be submitted and approved in advance by the board.

a. The final permittee-responsible wetlands compensation plan shall include:

(1) The complete information on all components of the conceptual compensation plan.

(2) A summary of the type and acreage of existing wetland impacts anticipated during the construction of the compensation site and the proposed compensation for these impacts; a site access plan; a monitoring plan, including proposed success criteria, monitoring goals, and the location of photo-monitoring stations, monitoring wells, vegetation sampling points, and reference wetlands or streams, if available; an abatement and control plan for undesirable plant species; an erosion and sedimentation control plan; a construction schedule; and the final protective mechanism for the protection of the compensation site or sites, including all surface waters and buffer areas within its boundaries.

(3) The approved protective mechanism. The protective mechanism shall be recorded in the chain of title to the property, or an equivalent instrument for government-owned lands, and proof of recordation shall be submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality prior to commencing impacts in surface waters.

b. The final permittee-responsible stream compensation plan shall include:

(1) The complete information on all components of the conceptual compensation plan.

(2) An evaluation, discussion, and plan drawing or drawings of existing conditions on the proposed compensation stream, including the identification of functional and physical deficiencies for which the measures are proposed, and summary of geomorphologic measurements (e.g., stream width, entrenchment ratio, width-depth ratio, sinuosity, slope, substrate, etc.); a site access plan; a monitoring plan, including a monitoring and reporting schedule, monitoring design and methodologies for success, proposed success criteria, location of photo-monitoring stations, vegetation sampling points, survey points, bank pins, scour chains, and reference streams; an abatement and control plan for undesirable plant species; an erosion and sedimentation control plan, if appropriate; a construction schedule; a plan-view drawing depicting the pattern and all compensation measures being employed; a profile drawing; cross-sectional drawing or drawings of the proposed compensation stream; and the final protective mechanism for the protection of the compensation site or sites, including all surface waters and buffer areas within its boundaries.

(3) The approved protective mechanism. The protective mechanism shall be recorded in the chain of title to the property, or an equivalent instrument for government-owned lands, and proof of recordation shall be submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality prior to commencing impacts in surface waters.

6. The following criteria shall apply to permittee-responsible wetland or stream compensation:

a. The vegetation used shall be native species common to the area, shall be suitable for growth in local wetland or riparian conditions, and shall be from areas within the same or adjacent U.S. Department of Agriculture Plant Hardiness Zone or Natural Resources Conservation Service Land Resource Region as that of the project site. Planting of woody plants shall occur when vegetation is normally dormant, unless otherwise approved in the final wetlands or stream compensation plan or plans.

b. All work in permitted impact areas shall cease if compensation site construction has not commenced within 180 days of commencement of project construction, unless otherwise authorized by the board.

c. The Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified in writing prior to the initiation of construction activities at the compensation site.

d. Point sources of stormwater runoff shall be prohibited from entering a wetland compensation site prior to treatment by appropriate best management practices. Appropriate best management practices may include sediment traps, grassed waterways, vegetated filter strips, debris screens, oil and grease separators, or forebays.

e. The success of the compensation shall be based on meeting the success criteria established in the approved final compensation plan.

f. If the wetland or stream compensation area fails to meet the specified success criteria in a particular monitoring year, other than the final monitoring year, the reasons for this failure shall be determined and a corrective action plan shall be submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality for approval with or before that year's monitoring report. The corrective action plan shall contain at minimum the proposed actions, a schedule for those actions, and a monitoring plan, and shall be implemented by the permittee in accordance with the approved schedule. Should significant changes be necessary to ensure success, the required monitoring cycle shall begin again, with monitoring year one being the year that the changes are complete as confirmed by the Department of Environmental Quality. If the wetland or stream compensation area fails to meet the specified success criteria by the final monitoring year or if the wetland or stream compensation area has not met the stated restoration goals, reasons for this failure shall be determined and a corrective action plan, including proposed actions, a schedule, and a monitoring plan, shall be submitted with the final year monitoring report for the Department of Environmental Quality approval. Corrective action shall be implemented by the permittee in accordance with the approved schedule. Annual monitoring shall be required to continue until two sequential, annual reports indicate that all criteria have been successfully satisfied and the site has met the overall restoration goals (e.g., that corrective actions were successful).

g. The surveyed wetland boundary for the compensation site shall be based on the results of the hydrology, soils, and vegetation monitoring data and shall be shown on the site plan. Calculation of total wetland acreage shall be based on that boundary at the end of the monitoring cycle. Data shall be submitted by December 31 of the final monitoring year.

h. Herbicides or algicides shall not be used in or immediately adjacent to the compensation site or sites without prior authorization by the board. All vegetation removal shall be done by manual means only, unless authorized by the Department of Environmental Quality in advance.

B. Impact site construction monitoring.

1. Construction activities authorized by this permit that are within impact areas shall be monitored and documented. The monitoring shall consist of:

a. Preconstruction photographs taken at each impact area prior to initiation of activities within impact areas. Photographs shall remain on the project site and depict the impact area and the nonimpacted surface waters immediately adjacent to and downgradient of each impact area. Each photograph shall be labeled to include the following information: permit number, impact area number, date and time of the photograph, name of the person taking the photograph, photograph orientation, and photograph subject description.

b. Site inspections shall be conducted by the permittee or the permittee's qualified designee once every calendar month during activities within impact areas. Monthly inspections shall be conducted in the following areas: all authorized permanent and temporary impact areas; all avoided surface waters, including wetlands, stream channels, and open water; surface water areas within 50 feet of any land disturbing activity and within the project or right-of-way limits; and all on-site permanent preservation areas required under this permit. Observations shall be recorded on the inspection form provided by the Department of Environmental Quality. The form shall be completed in its entirety for each monthly inspection and shall be kept on site and made available for review by the Department of Environmental Quality staff upon request during normal business hours. Inspections are not required during periods of no activity within impact areas.

2. Monitoring of water quality parameters shall be conducted during permanent relocation of perennial streams through new channels in the manner noted below. The permittee shall report violations of water quality standards to the Department of Environmental Quality in accordance with the procedures in 9VAC25-680-100 Part II E. Corrective measures and additional monitoring may be required if water quality standards are not met. Reporting shall not be required if water quality standards are not violated.

a. A sampling station shall be located upstream and immediately downstream of the relocated channel.

b. Temperature, pH, and dissolved oxygen (D.O.) measurements shall be taken every 30 minutes for at least two hours at each station prior to opening the new channels and immediately before opening new channels.

c. Temperature, pH, and D.O. readings shall be taken after opening the channels and every 30 minutes for at least three hours at each station.

C. Permittee-responsible wetland compensation site monitoring.

1. An as-built ground survey, or an aerial survey provided by a firm specializing in aerial surveys, shall be conducted for the entire compensation site or sites, including invert elevations for all water elevation control structures and spot elevations throughout the site or sites. Aerial surveys shall include the variation from actual ground conditions, such as +/- 0.2 feet. Either type of survey shall be certified by a licensed surveyor or by a registered professional engineer to conform to the design plans. The survey shall be submitted within 60 days of completing compensation site construction. Changes or deviations in the as-built survey or aerial survey shall be shown on the survey and explained in writing.

2. Photographs shall be taken at the compensation site or sites from the permanent markers identified in the final compensation plan, and established to ensure that the same locations and view directions at the site or sites are monitored in each monitoring period. These photographs shall be taken after the initial planting and at a time specified in the final compensation plan during every monitoring year.

3. Compensation site monitoring shall begin on the first day of the first complete growing season (monitoring year 1) after wetland compensation site construction activities, including planting, have been completed. Monitoring shall be required for monitoring years 1, 2, 3, and 5, unless otherwise approved by the Department of Environmental Quality. In all cases, if all success criteria have not been met in the final monitoring year, then monitoring shall be required for each consecutive year until two annual sequential reports indicate that all criteria have been successfully satisfied.

4. The establishment of wetland hydrology shall be measured weekly during the growing season, with the location and number of monitoring wells, and frequency of monitoring for each site, set forth in the final monitoring plan. Hydrology monitoring well data shall be accompanied by precipitation data, including rainfall amounts, either from on site or from the closest weather station. Once the wetland hydrology success criteria have been satisfied for a particular monitoring year, monitoring may be discontinued for the remainder of that monitoring year following Department of Environmental Quality approval. After a period of three monitoring years, the permittee may request that hydrology monitoring be discontinued, providing that adequate hydrology has been established and maintained. Hydrology monitoring shall not be discontinued without written approval from the Department of Environmental Quality.

5. The presence of hydric soils or soils under hydric conditions shall be evaluated in accordance with the final compensation plan.

6. The establishment of wetland vegetation shall be in accordance with the final compensation plan. Monitoring shall take place in August, September, or October during the growing season of each monitoring year, unless otherwise authorized in the monitoring plan.

7. The presence of undesirable plant species shall be documented.

8. All wetland compensation monitoring reports shall be submitted in accordance with 9VAC25-680-100 Part II E 6.

D. Permittee-responsible stream compensation and monitoring.

1. Riparian buffer restoration activities shall be detailed in the final compensation plan and shall include, as appropriate, the planting of a variety of native species currently growing in the site area, including appropriate seed mixtures and woody species that are bare root, balled, or burlapped. A minimum buffer width of 50 feet, measured from the top of the stream bank at bankfull elevation landward on both sides of the stream, shall be required where practical.

2. The installation of root wads, vanes, and other instream structures, shaping of the stream banks and channel relocation shall be completed in the dry whenever practicable.

3. Livestock access to the stream and designated riparian buffer shall be limited to the greatest extent practicable.

4. Stream channel restoration activities shall be conducted in the dry or during low flow conditions. When site conditions prohibit access from the streambank or upon prior authorization from the Department of Environmental Quality, heavy equipment may be authorized for use within the stream channel.

5. Photographs shall be taken at the compensation site from the vicinity of the permanent photo-monitoring stations identified in the final compensation plan. The photograph orientation shall remain constant during all monitoring events. At a minimum, photographs shall be taken from the center of the stream, facing downstream, with a sufficient number of photographs to view the entire length of the restoration site. Photographs shall document the completed restoration conditions. Photographs shall be taken prior to site activities, during instream and riparian compensation construction activities, within one week of completion of activities, and during at least one day of each monitoring year to depict restored conditions.

6. An as-built ground survey, or an aerial survey provided by a firm specializing in aerial surveys, shall be conducted for the entire compensation site or sites. Aerial surveys shall include the variation from actual ground conditions, such as +/- 0.2 feet. The survey shall be certified by the licensed surveyor or by a registered, professional engineer to conform to the design plans. The survey shall be submitted within 60 days of completing compensation site construction. Changes or deviations from the final compensation plans in the as-built survey or aerial survey shall be shown on the survey and explained in writing.

7. Compensation site monitoring shall begin on day one of the first complete growing season (monitoring year 1) after stream compensation site constructions activities, including planting, have been completed. Monitoring shall be required for monitoring years 1 and 2, unless otherwise approved by the Department of Environmental Quality. In all cases, if all success criteria have not been met in the final monitoring year, then monitoring shall be required for each consecutive year until two annual sequential reports indicate that all criteria have been successfully satisfied.

8. All stream compensation site monitoring reports shall be submitted in accordance with 9VAC25-680-100 Part II E 6.

E. Reporting.

1. Written communications required by this VWP general permit shall be submitted to the appropriate Department of Environmental Quality office. The VWP general permit tracking number shall be included on all correspondence.

2. The Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified in writing prior to the start of construction activities at the first permitted impact area.

3. A construction status update form provided by the Department of Environmental Quality shall be completed and submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality twice per year for the duration of coverage under a VWP general permit. Forms completed in June shall be submitted by or on July 10, and forms completed in December shall be submitted by or on January 10. The form shall include reference to the VWP permit tracking number and one of the following statements for each authorized surface water impact location:

a. Construction activities have not yet started;

b. Construction activities have started;

c. Construction activities have started but are currently inactive; or

d. Construction activities are complete.

4. The Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified in writing within 30 days following the completion of all activities in all authorized impact areas.

5. The Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified in writing prior to the initiation of activities at the permittee-responsible compensation site. The notification shall include a projected schedule of activities and construction completion.

6. All permittee-responsible compensation site monitoring reports shall be submitted annually by December 31, with the exception of the last year, in which case the report shall be submitted at least 60 days prior to the expiration of the general permit, unless otherwise approved by the Department of Environmental Quality.

a. All wetland compensation site monitoring reports shall include, as applicable, the following:

(1) General description of the site including a site location map identifying photo-monitoring stations, vegetative and soil monitoring stations, monitoring wells, and wetland zones.

(2) Summary of activities completed during the monitoring year, including alterations or maintenance conducted at the site.

(3) Description of monitoring methods.

(4) Analysis of all hydrology information, including monitoring well data, precipitation data, and gauging data from streams or other open water areas, as set forth in the final compensation plan.

(5) Evaluation of hydric soils or soils under hydric conditions, as appropriate.

(6) Analysis of all vegetative community information, including woody and herbaceous species, both planted and volunteers, as set forth in the final compensation plan.

(7) Photographs labeled with the permit number, the name of the compensation site, the photo-monitoring station number, the photograph orientation, the date and time of the photograph, the name of the person taking the photograph, and a brief description of the photograph subject. This information shall be provided as a separate attachment to each photograph, if necessary. Photographs taken after the initial planting shall be included in the first monitoring report after planting is complete.

(8) Discussion of wildlife or signs of wildlife observed at the compensation site.

(9) Comparison of site conditions from the previous monitoring year and reference site.

(10) Discussion of corrective measures or maintenance activities to control undesirable species, to repair damaged water control devices, or to replace damaged planted vegetation.

(11) Corrective action plan that includes proposed actions, a schedule, and monitoring plan.

b. All stream compensation site monitoring reports shall include, as applicable, the following:

(1) General description of the site including a site location map identifying photo-monitoring stations and monitoring stations.

(2) Summary of activities completed during the monitoring year, including alterations or maintenance conducted at the site.

(3) Description of monitoring methods.

(4) Evaluation and discussion of the monitoring results in relation to the success criteria and overall goals of compensation.

(5) Photographs shall be labeled with the permit number, the name of the compensation site, the photo-monitoring station number, the photograph orientation, the date and time of the photograph, the name of the person taking the photograph, and a brief description of the photograph subject. Photographs taken prior to compensation site construction activities, during instream and riparian restoration activities, and within one week of completion of activities shall be included in the first monitoring report.

(6) Discussion of alterations, maintenance, or major storm events resulting in significant change in stream profile or cross section, and corrective actions conducted at the stream compensation site.

(7) Documentation of undesirable plant species and summary of abatement and control measures.

(8) Summary of wildlife or signs of wildlife observed at the compensation site.

(9) Comparison of site conditions from the previous monitoring year and reference site, and as-built survey, if applicable.

(10) Corrective action plan that includes proposed actions, a schedule and monitoring plan.

(11) Additional submittals that were approved by the Department of Environmental Quality in the final compensation plan.

7. The permittee shall notify the Department of Environmental Quality in writing when unusual or potentially complex conditions are encountered which require debris removal or involve potentially toxic substance. Measures to remove the obstruction, material, or toxic substance or to change the location of a structure are prohibited until approved by the Department of Environmental Quality.

8. The permittee shall report fish kills or spills of oil or fuel immediately upon discovery. If spills or fish kills occur between the hours of 8:15 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, the appropriate Department of Environmental Quality regional office shall be notified; otherwise, the Department of Emergency Management shall be notified at 1-800-468-8892.

9. Violations of state water quality standards shall be reported to the appropriate Department of Environmental Quality office no later than the end of the business day following discovery.

10. The permittee shall notify the Department of Environmental Quality no later than the end of the third business day following the discovery of additional impacts to surface waters including wetlands, stream channels, and open water that are not authorized by the Department of Environmental Quality or to any required preservation areas. The notification shall include photographs, estimated acreage or linear footage of impacts, and a description of the impacts.

11. Submittals required by this VWP general permit shall contain the following signed certification statement:

"I certify under penalty of law that this document and all attachments were prepared under my direction or supervision in accordance with a system designed to assure that qualified personnel properly gather and evaluate the information submitted. Based on my inquiry of the person or persons who manage the system, or those persons directly responsible for gathering the information, the information submitted is, to the best of my knowledge and belief, true, accurate, and complete. I am aware that there are significant penalties for submitting false information, including the possibility of fine and imprisonment for knowing violation."

Part III. Conditions Applicable to All VWP General Permits.

A. Duty to comply. The permittee shall comply with all conditions, limitations, and other requirements of the VWP general permit; any requirements in coverage granted under this VWP general permit; the Clean Water Act, as amended; and the State Water Control Law and regulations adopted pursuant to it. Any VWP general permit violation or noncompliance is a violation of the Clean Water Act and State Water Control Law and is grounds for (i) enforcement action, (ii) VWP general permit coverage termination for cause, (iii) VWP general permit coverage revocation, (iv) denial of application for coverage, or (v) denial of an application for a modification to VWP general permit coverage. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to relieve the permittee of the duty to comply with all applicable federal and state statutes, regulations, and toxic standards and prohibitions.

B. Duty to mitigate. The permittee shall take all reasonable steps to minimize or prevent impacts in violation of the VWP general permit that may have a reasonable likelihood of adversely affecting human health or the environment.

C. Reopener. This VWP general permit may be reopened to modify its conditions when the circumstances on which the previous VWP general permit was based have materially and substantially changed, or special studies conducted by the board or the permittee show material and substantial change since the time the VWP general permit was issued and thereby constitute cause for revoking and reissuing the VWP general permit.

D. Compliance with state and federal law. Compliance with this VWP general permit constitutes compliance with the VWP permit requirements of the State Water Control Law. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to preclude the institution of any legal action under or relieve the permittee from any responsibilities, liabilities, or other penalties established pursuant to any other state law or regulation or under the authority preserved by § 510 of the Clean Water Act.

E. Property rights. The issuance of this VWP general permit does not convey property rights in either real or personal property or any exclusive privileges, nor does it authorize injury to private property, any invasion of personal property rights, or any infringement of federal, state, or local laws or regulations.

F. Severability. The provisions of this VWP general permit are severable.

G. Inspection and entry. Upon presentation of credentials, the permittee shall allow the board or any duly authorized agent of the board, at reasonable times and under reasonable circumstances, to enter upon the permittee's property, public or private, and have access to inspect and copy any records that must be kept as part of the VWP general permit conditions; to inspect any facilities, operations, or practices (including monitoring and control equipment) regulated or required under the VWP general permit; and to sample or monitor any substance, parameter, or activity for the purpose of assuring compliance with the conditions of the VWP general permit or as otherwise authorized by law. For the purpose of this section, the time for inspection shall be deemed reasonable during regular business hours. Nothing contained herein shall make an inspection time unreasonable during an emergency.

H. Transferability of VWP general permit coverage. VWP general permit coverage may be transferred to another permittee when all of the criteria listed in this subsection are met. On the date of the VWP general permit coverage transfer, the transferred VWP general permit coverage shall be as fully effective as if it had been granted directly to the new permittee.

1. The current permittee notifies the board of the proposed transfer of the general permit coverage and provides a written agreement between the current and new permittees containing a specific date of transfer of VWP general permit responsibility, coverage, and liability to the new permittee, or that the current permittee will retain such responsibility, coverage, or liability, including liability for compliance with the requirements of enforcement activities related to the authorized activity.

2. The board does not within 15 days notify the current and new permittees of its intent to modify or revoke and reissue the VWP general permit.

I. Notice of planned change. VWP general permit coverage may be modified subsequent to issuance in accordance with 9VAC25-680-80.

J. VWP general permit coverage termination for cause. VWP general permit coverage is subject to termination for cause by the board after public notice and opportunity for a hearing pursuant to § 62.1-44.15:02 of the Code of Virginia. Reasons for termination for cause are as follows:

1. Noncompliance by the permittee with any provision of this chapter, any condition of the VWP general permit, or any requirement in general permit coverage;

2. The permittee's failure in the application or during the process of granting VWP general permit coverage to disclose fully all relevant facts or the permittee's misrepresentation of any relevant facts at any time;

3. The permittee's violation of a special or judicial order;

4. A determination by the board that the authorized activity endangers human health or the environment and can be regulated to acceptable levels by a modification to VWP general permit coverage or a termination;

5. A change in any condition that requires either a temporary or permanent reduction or elimination of any activity controlled by the VWP general permit; or

6. A determination that the authorized activity has ceased and that the compensation for unavoidable adverse impacts has been successfully completed.

K. The board may terminate VWP general permit coverage without cause when the permittee is no longer a legal entity due to death or dissolution or when a company is no longer authorized to conduct business in the Commonwealth. The termination shall be effective 30 days after notice of the proposed termination is sent to the last known address of the permittee or registered agent, unless the permittee objects within that time. If the permittee does object during that period, the board shall follow the applicable procedures for termination under §§ 62.1-44.15:02 and 62.1-44.15:25 of the Code of Virginia.

L. VWP general permit coverage termination by consent. The permittee shall submit a request for termination by consent within 30 days of completing or canceling all authorized activities requiring notification under 9VAC25-680-50 A and all compensatory mitigation requirements. When submitted for project completion, the request for termination by consent shall constitute a notice of project completion in accordance with 9VAC25-210-130 F. The director may accept this termination of coverage on behalf of the board. The permittee shall submit the following information:

1. Name, mailing address, and telephone number;

2. Name and location of the activity;

3. The VWP general permit tracking number; and

4. One of the following certifications:

a. For project completion:

"I certify under penalty of law that all activities and any required compensatory mitigation authorized by the VWP general permit and general permit coverage have been completed. I understand that by submitting this notice of termination I am no longer authorized to perform activities in surface waters in accordance with the VWP general permit and general permit coverage, and that performing activities in surface waters is unlawful where the activity is not authorized by the VWP permit or coverage, unless otherwise excluded from obtaining coverage. I also understand that the submittal of this notice does not release me from liability for any violations of the VWP general permit coverage."

b. For project cancellation:

"I certify under penalty of law that the activities and any required compensatory mitigation authorized by the VWP general permit and general permit coverage will not occur. I understand that by submitting this notice of termination I am no longer authorized to perform activities in surface waters in accordance with the VWP general permit and general permit coverage, and that performing activities in surface waters is unlawful where the activity is not authorized by the VWP permit or coverage, unless otherwise excluded from obtaining coverage. I also understand that the submittal of this notice does not release me from liability for any violations of the VWP general permit or coverage, nor does it allow me to resume the authorized activities without reapplication and coverage."

c. For events beyond permittee control, the permittee shall provide a detailed explanation of the events, to be approved by the Department of Environmental Quality, and the following certification statement:

"I certify under penalty of law that the activities or the required compensatory mitigation authorized by the VWP general permit and general permit coverage have changed as the result of events beyond my control (see attached). I understand that by submitting this notice of termination I am no longer authorized to perform activities in surface waters in accordance with the VWP general permit and general permit coverage, and that performing activities in surface waters is unlawful where the activity is not authorized by the VWP permit or coverage, unless otherwise excluded from obtaining coverage. I also understand that the submittal of this notice does not release me from liability for any violations of the VWP general permit authorization or coverage, nor does it allow me to resume the authorized activities without reapplication and coverage."

M. Civil and criminal liability. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to relieve the permittee from civil and criminal penalties for noncompliance.

N. Oil and hazardous substance liability. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to preclude the institution of legal action or relieve the permittee from any responsibilities, liabilities, or penalties to which the permittee is or may be subject under § 311 of the Clean Water Act or §§ 62.1-44.34:14 through 62.1-44.34:23 of the State Water Control Law.

O. Duty to cease or confine activity. It shall not be a defense for a permittee in an enforcement action that it would have been necessary to halt or reduce the activity for which VWP general permit coverage has been granted in order to maintain compliance with the conditions of the VWP general permit or coverage.

P. Duty to provide information.

1. The permittee shall furnish to the board any information that the board may request to determine whether cause exists for modifying, revoking, or terminating VWP permit coverage or to determine compliance with the VWP general permit or general permit coverage. The permittee shall also furnish to the board, upon request, copies of records required to be kept by the permittee.

2. Plans, maps, conceptual reports, and other relevant information shall be submitted as required by the board prior to commencing construction.

Q. Monitoring and records requirements.

1. Monitoring of parameters, other than pollutants, shall be conducted according to approved analytical methods as specified in the VWP general permit. Analysis of pollutants will be conducted according to 40 CFR Part 136 (2000), Guidelines Establishing Test Procedures for the Analysis of Pollutants.

2. Samples and measurements taken for the purpose of monitoring shall be representative of the monitored activity.

3. The permittee shall retain records of all monitoring information, including all calibration and maintenance records and all original strip chart or electronic recordings for continuous monitoring instrumentation, copies of all reports required by the VWP general permit, and records of all data used to complete the application for coverage under the VWP general permit, for a period of at least three years from the date of general permit expiration. This period may be extended by request of the board at any time.

4. Records of monitoring information shall include, as appropriate:

a. The date, exact place, and time of sampling or measurements;

b. The name of the individuals who performed the sampling or measurements;

c. The date and time the analyses were performed;

d. The name of the individuals who performed the analyses;

e. The analytical techniques or methods supporting the information such as observations, readings, calculations, and bench data used;

f. The results of such analyses; and

g. Chain of custody documentation.

R. Unauthorized discharge of pollutants. Except in compliance with this VWP general permit, it shall be unlawful for the permittee to:

1. Discharge into state waters sewage, industrial wastes, other wastes, or any noxious or deleterious substances;

2. Excavate in a wetland;

3. Otherwise alter the physical, chemical, or biological properties of state waters and make them detrimental to the public health, to animal or aquatic life, or to the uses of such waters for domestic or industrial consumption, for recreation, or for other uses; or

4. On and after August 1, 2001, for linear transportation projects of the Virginia Department of Transportation, or on and after October 1, 2001, for all other projects, conduct the following activities in a wetland:

a. New activities to cause draining that significantly alters or degrades existing wetland acreage or functions;

b. Filling or dumping;

c. Permanent flooding or impounding; or

d. New activities that cause significant alteration or degradation of existing wetland acreage or functions.

S. Duty to reapply. Any permittee desiring to continue a previously authorized activity after the expiration date of the VWP general permit shall comply with the provisions in 9VAC25-680-27.

9VAC25-690-50

9VAC25-690-50. Notification.

A. Notification to the board will be required prior to commencing construction as follows:

1. An application for coverage for proposed, permanent nontidal wetland or open water impacts greater than one-tenth acre or for proposed permanent nontidal stream bed impacts greater than 300 linear feet shall include all information pursuant to 9VAC25-690-60 B. Compensatory mitigation may be required for all permanent impacts.

2. An application for coverage for proposed, permanent nontidal wetland or open water impacts up to one-tenth acre or for proposed, permanent nontidal stream bed impacts up to 300 linear feet shall be submitted in accordance with either subdivision 2 a or 2 b of this subsection:

a. For any proposed project in wetlands, open water, streams, or compensatory mitigation sites that are under a deed restriction, conservation easement, declaration of restrictive covenant, or other land use protective instrument (hereafter "protected areas"), when such restriction, easement, covenant, or instrument is the result of a federal or state permit action and is specific to activities in wetlands and compensatory mitigation sites, the application shall include all of the information required by 9VAC25-690-60 B. Compensatory mitigation may be required for all permanent impacts.

b. For all other projects, the application shall include the information required by subdivisions 1 through 7, 11, 12, 15, and 16 of 9VAC25-690-60 B, and documentation that verifies the quantity and type of impacts. Compensatory mitigation may be required for all permanent impacts once the notification limits of one-tenth acre wetlands or open water, or 300 linear feet of stream bed, are exceeded, and if required, the application shall include the information in 9VAC25-690-60 B 13.

B. The Department of Environmental Quality-approved application forms shall serve as an application for a VWP permit or VWP general permit coverage.

C. The board will determine whether the proposed activity requires coordination with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Wildlife Resources regarding the presence of federal or state listed threatened and endangered species or designated critical habitat. Based upon consultation with these agencies, the board may deny application for coverage under this general permit. The applicant may also consult with these agencies prior to submitting an application. Species or habitat information that the applicant provides will assist the Department of Environmental Quality in reviewing and processing the application.

9VAC25-690-60

9VAC25-690-60. Application.

A. The applicant shall file a complete application in accordance with 9VAC25-690-50 and this section for coverage under this VWP general permit for impacts to surface waters from development and certain mining activities.

B. A complete application for VWP general permit coverage, at a minimum, consists of the following information, if applicable to the project:

1. The applicant's legal name, mailing address, telephone number, and if applicable, electronic mail address and fax number.

2. If different from the applicant, legal name, mailing address, telephone number, and if applicable, electronic mail address and fax number of property owner.

3. If applicable, the authorized agent's name, mailing address, telephone number, and if applicable, fax number and electronic mail address.

4. The existing VWP general permit tracking number, if applicable.

5. Project name and proposed project schedule.

6. The following information for the project site location, and any related permittee-responsible compensatory mitigation site:

a. The physical street address, nearest street, or nearest route number; city or county; zip code; and if applicable, parcel number of the site or sites.

b. Name of the impacted water body or water bodies, or receiving waters, as applicable, at the site or sites.

c. The latitude and longitude to the nearest second at the center of the site or sites.

d. The fourth order subbasin, as defined by the hydrologic unit boundaries of the National Watershed Boundary Dataset, for the site or sites.

e. A detailed map depicting the location of the site or sites, including the project boundary and all existing preservation areas on the site or sites. The map (e.g., a U.S. Geologic Survey topographic quadrangle map) should be of sufficient detail to easily locate the site or sites for inspection.

7. A narrative description of the project, including project purpose and need.

8. Plan-view drawing or drawings of the project site sufficient to assess the project, including at a minimum the following:

a. North arrow, graphic scale, and existing and proposed topographic or bathymetric contours.

b. Limits of proposed impacts to surface waters.

c. Location of all existing and proposed structures.

d. All delineated wetlands and all jurisdictional surface waters on the site, including the Cowardin classification (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested) for those surface waters and waterway name, if designated; ebb and flood or direction of flow; and ordinary high water mark in nontidal areas.

e. The limits of Chesapeake Bay Resource Protection Areas (RPAs) as field-verified by the applicant, and if available, the limits as approved by the locality in which the project site is located, unless the proposed use is exempt from the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Area Designation and Management Regulations (9VAC25-830).

f. The limits of any areas that are under a deed restriction, conservation easement, restrictive covenant, or other land use protective instrument (i.e., protected areas).

9. Cross-sectional and profile drawing or drawings. Cross-sectional drawing or drawings of each proposed impact area shall include at a minimum a graphic scale, existing structures, existing and proposed elevations, limits of surface water areas, ebb and flood or direction of flow (if applicable), ordinary high water mark in nontidal areas, impact limits, and location of all existing and proposed structures. Profile drawing or drawings with this information may be required on a case-by-case basis to demonstrate minimization of impacts. Any application that proposes piping or culverting stream flows shall provide a longitudinal profile of the pipe or culvert position and stream bed thalweg, or shall provide spot elevations of the stream thalweg at the beginning and end of the pipe or culvert, extending to a minimum of 10 feet beyond the limits of proposed impact.

10. Materials assessment. Upon request by the board, the applicant shall provide evidence or certification that the material is free from toxic contaminants prior to disposal or that the dredging activity will not cause or contribute to a violation of water quality standards during dredging. The applicant may be required to conduct grain size and composition analyses, tests for specific parameters or chemical constituents, or elutriate tests on the dredge material.

11. A narrative description of all impacts proposed to surface waters, including the type of activity to be conducted in surface waters and any physical alteration to surface waters. Surface water impacts shall be identified as follows:

a. Wetland impacts identified according to their Cowardin classification (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested); and for each classification, the individual impacts quantified in square feet to the nearest whole number, cumulatively summed in square feet, and then the sum converted to acres and rounded to two decimal places using commonly accepted arithmetic principles of rounding.

b. Individual stream impacts (i) quantified by length in linear feet to the nearest whole number and by average width in feet to the nearest whole number; (ii) quantified in square feet to the nearest whole number; and (iii) when compensatory mitigation is required, the impacts identified according to the assessed type using the Unified Stream Methodology.

c. Open water impacts identified according to their Cowardin classification, and for each type, the individual impacts quantified in square feet to the nearest whole number, cumulatively summed in square feet, and then the sum converted to acres and rounded to two decimal places using commonly accepted arithmetic principles of rounding.

d. A copy of the approved jurisdictional determination when available, or when unavailable, (i) the preliminary jurisdictional determination from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), or DEQ or (ii) other correspondence from the USACE, NRCS, or DEQ indicating approval of the boundary of applicable jurisdictional surface waters, including wetlands data sheets if applicable.

e. A delineation map that (i) depicts the geographic area or areas of all surface water boundaries delineated in accordance with 9VAC25-210-45 and confirmed in accordance with the jurisdictional determination process; (ii) identifies such areas in accordance with subdivisions 11 a, 11 b, and 11 c of this subsection; and (iii) quantifies and identifies any other surface waters according to their Cowardin classification (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested) or similar terminology.

12. An alternatives analysis for the proposed project detailing the specific on-site measures taken during project design and development to first avoid and then minimize impacts to surface waters to the maximum extent practicable in accordance with the Guidelines for Specification of Disposal Sites for Dredged or Fill Material, 40 CFR Part 230. Avoidance and minimization includes, but is not limited to, the specific on-site measures taken to reduce the size, scope, configuration, or density of the proposed project, including review of alternative sites where required for the project, which would avoid or result in less adverse impact to surface waters, and documentation demonstrating the reason the applicant determined less damaging alternatives are not practicable. The analysis shall demonstrate to the satisfaction of the board that avoidance and minimization opportunities have been identified and measures have been applied to the proposed activity such that the proposed activity in terms of impacts to state waters and fish and wildlife resources is the least environmentally damaging practicable alternative.

13. A compensatory mitigation plan to achieve no net loss of wetland acreage and functions or stream functions and water quality benefits.

a. If permittee-responsible compensation is proposed for wetland impacts, a conceptual wetland compensatory mitigation plan must be submitted in order for an application to be deemed complete and shall include at a minimum (i) the goals and objectives in terms of replacement of wetland acreage and functions; (ii) a detailed location map including latitude and longitude to the nearest second and the fourth order subbasin, as defined by the hydrologic unit boundaries of the National Watershed Boundary Dataset, at the center of the site; (iii) a description of the surrounding land use; (iv) a hydrologic analysis including a draft water budget for nontidal areas based on expected monthly inputs and outputs that will project water level elevations for a typical year, a dry year, and a wet year; (v) groundwater elevation data, if available, or the proposed location of groundwater monitoring wells to collect these data; (vi) wetland delineation confirmation, data sheets, and maps for existing surface water areas on the proposed site or sites; (vii) a conceptual grading plan; (viii) a conceptual planting scheme including suggested plant species and zonation of each vegetation type proposed; (ix) a description of existing soils including general information on both topsoil and subsoil conditions, permeability, and the need for soil amendments; (x) a draft design of any water control structures; (xi) inclusion of buffer areas; (xii) a description of any structures and features necessary for the success of the site; (xiii) the schedule for compensatory mitigation site construction; and (xiv) measures for the control of undesirable species.

b. If permittee-responsible compensation is proposed for stream impacts, a conceptual stream compensatory mitigation plan must be submitted in order for an application to be deemed complete and shall include at a minimum (i) the goals and objectives in terms of water quality benefits and replacement of stream functions; (ii) a detailed location map including the latitude and longitude to the nearest second and the fourth order subbasin, as defined by the hydrologic unit boundaries of the National Watershed Boundary Dataset, at the center of the site; (iii) a description of the surrounding land use; (iv) the proposed stream segment restoration locations including plan view and cross-sectional drawings; (v) the stream deficiencies that need to be addressed; (vi) data obtained from a DEQ-approved, stream impact assessment methodology such as the Unified Stream Methodology; (vii) the proposed restoration measures to be employed including channel measurements, proposed design flows, types of instream structures, and conceptual planting scheme; (viii) reference stream data, if available; (ix) inclusion of buffer areas; (x) schedule for restoration activities; and (xi) measures for the control of undesirable species.

c. For any permittee-responsible compensatory mitigation, the conceptual compensatory mitigation plan shall also include a draft of the intended protective mechanism or mechanisms, in accordance with 9VAC25-210-116 B 2, such as, but not limited to, a conservation easement held by a third party in accordance with the Virginia Conservation Easement Act (§ 10.1-1009 et seq. of the Code of Virginia) or the Virginia Open-Space Land Act (§ 10.1-1700 et seq. of the Code of Virginia), a duly recorded declaration of restrictive covenants, or other protective instrument. The draft intended protective mechanism shall contain the information in subdivisions c (1), c (2), and c (3) of this subdivision 13 or in lieu thereof shall describe the intended protective mechanism or mechanisms that contains the information required below:

(1) A provision for access to the site;

(2) The following minimum restrictions: no ditching, land clearing, or discharge of dredge or fill material, and no activity in the area designated as compensatory mitigation area with the exception of maintenance; corrective action measures; or DEQ-approved activities described in the approved final compensatory mitigation plan or long-term management plan; and

(3) A long-term management plan that identifies a long-term steward and adequate financial assurances for long-term management in accordance with the current standard for mitigation banks and in-lieu fee program sites, except that financial assurances will not be necessary for permittee-responsible compensation provided by government agencies on government property. If approved by DEQ, permittee-responsible compensation on government property and long-term protection may be provided through federal facility management plans, integrated natural resources management plans, or other alternate management plans submitted by a government agency or public authority.

d. Any compensatory mitigation plan proposing the purchase of mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program credits shall include the number and type of credits proposed to be purchased and documentation from the approved bank or in-lieu fee program sponsor of the availability of credits at the time of application.

14. Permit application fee. The applicant will be notified by the board as to the appropriate fee for the project in accordance with 9VAC25-20.

15. A written description and a graphical depiction identifying all upland areas including buffers, wetlands, open water, other surface waters, and compensatory mitigation areas located within the proposed project boundary or permittee-responsible compensatory mitigation areas that are under a deed restriction, conservation easement, restrictive covenant, or other land use protective instrument (i.e., protected areas). Such description and a graphical depiction shall include the nature of the prohibited activities within the protected areas and the limits of Chesapeake Bay Resource Protection Areas (RPAs) as field-verified by the applicant, and if available, the limits as approved by the locality in which the project site is located, unless the proposed use is exempt from the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Area Designation and Management Regulations (9VAC25-830), as additional state or local requirements may apply if the project is located within an RPA.

16. Signature page that has been signed, dated, and certified by the applicant in accordance with 9VAC25-210-100. If the applicant is a business or other organization, the signature must be made by an individual with the authority to bind the business or organization, and the title of the signatory must be provided. The application signature page, either on the copy submitted to the Virginia Marine Resources Commission or to DEQ, must have an original signature. Electronic submittals containing the original signature page, such as that contained in a scanned document file, are acceptable.

C. An analysis of the functions of wetlands proposed to be impacted may be required by DEQ. When required, the method selected for the analysis shall assess water quality or habitat metrics and shall be coordinated with DEQ in advance of conducting the analysis.

1. No analysis shall be required when:

a. Wetland impacts per each single and complete project total 1.00 acre or less; or

b. The proposed compensatory mitigation consists of purchasing mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program credits at standard mitigation ratios of 2:1 for forest, 1.5:1 for scrub-shrub, and 1:1 for emergent, or higher.

2. Analysis shall be required when wetland impacts per each single and complete project total 1.01 acres or more and when any of the following applies:

a. The proposed compensatory mitigation consists of permittee-responsible compensation, including water quality enhancements as replacement for wetlands; or

b. The proposed compensatory mitigation consists of purchasing mitigation bank or in-lieu fee program credits at less than the standard mitigation ratios of 2:1 for forest, 1.5:1 for scrub-shrub, and 1:1 for emergent.

D. Upon receipt of an application by the appropriate DEQ office, the board has 15 days to review the application and either determine the information requested in subsection B of this section is complete or inform the applicant that additional information is required to make the application complete. Coverage under this VWP general permit shall be approved or approved with conditions, or the application shall be denied, within 45 days of receipt of a complete application. If the board fails to act within 45 days on a complete application, coverage under this VWP permit general permit shall be deemed granted.

1. In evaluating the application, the board shall make an assessment of the impacts associated with the project in combination with other existing or proposed impacts. Application for coverage under this VWP general permit shall be denied if the cumulative impacts will cause or contribute to a significant impairment of state waters or fish and wildlife resources.

2. The board may place additional requirements on a project in order to grant coverage under this VWP general permit. However, the requirements must be consistent with this chapter.

E. Incomplete application.

1. Where an application for general permit coverage is not accepted as complete by the board within 15 days of receipt, the board shall require the submission of additional information from the applicant and may suspend processing of any application until such time as the applicant has supplied the requested information and the application is complete. Where the applicant becomes aware that he omitted one or more relevant facts from an application, or submitted incorrect information in an application or in any report to the board, the applicant shall immediately submit such facts or the correct information. A revised application with new information shall be deemed a new application for purposes of review but shall not require an additional permit application fee.

2. An incomplete permit application for general permit coverage may be administratively withdrawn from processing by the board for failure to provide the required information after 60 days from the date of the latest written information request made by the board. The board shall provide (i) notice to the applicant and (ii) an opportunity for an informal fact-finding proceeding when administratively withdrawing an incomplete application. Resubmittal of an application for the same or similar project, after such time that the original permit application was administratively withdrawn, shall require submittal of an additional permit application fee.

3. An applicant may request a suspension of application review by the board, but requesting a suspension shall not preclude the board from administratively withdrawing an incomplete application. Resubmittal of a permit application for the same or similar project, after such time that the original permit application was administratively withdrawn, shall require submittal of an additional permit application fee.

9VAC25-690-100

9VAC25-690-100. VWP general permit.

VWP GENERAL PERMIT NO. WP4 FOR IMPACTS FROM DEVELOPMENT AND CERTAIN MINING ACTIVITIES UNDER THE VIRGINIA WATER PROTECTION PERMIT AND THE VIRGINIA STATE WATER CONTROL LAW

Effective date: August 2, 2016
Expiration date: August 1, 2026

In compliance with § 401 of the Clean Water Act, as amended (33 USC § 1341) and the State Water Control Law and regulations adopted pursuant thereto, the board has determined that there is a reasonable assurance that this VWP general permit, if complied with, will protect instream beneficial uses, will not violate applicable water quality standards, and will not cause or contribute to a significant impairment of state waters or fish and wildlife resources. In issuing this VWP general permit, the board has not taken into consideration the structural stability of any proposed activities.

The permanent or temporary impact of up to two acres of nontidal wetlands or open water and up to 1,500 linear feet of nontidal stream bed shall be subject to the provisions of the VWP general permit set forth herein; any requirements in coverage granted under this general permit; the Clean Water Act, as amended; and the State Water Control Law and regulations adopted pursuant to it.

Part I. Special Conditions.

A. Authorized activities.

1. The activities authorized by this chapter shall not cause more than the permanent or temporary impacts of up to two acres of nontidal wetlands or open water and up to 1,500 linear feet of nontidal stream bed. Additional permit requirements as stipulated by the board in the coverage letter, if any, shall be enforceable conditions of this permit.

2. Any changes to the authorized permanent impacts to surface waters shall require a notice of planned change in accordance with 9VAC25-690-80. An application or request for modification to coverage or another VWP permit application may be required.

3. Any changes to the authorized temporary impacts to surface waters shall require written notification to and approval from the Department of Environmental Quality in accordance with 9VAC25-690-80 prior to initiating the impacts and restoration to preexisting conditions in accordance with the conditions of this permit.

4. Modification to compensation requirements may be approved at the request of the permittee when a decrease in the amount of authorized surface waters impacts occurs, provided that the adjusted compensation meets the initial compensation goals.

B. Overall conditions.

1. The activities authorized by this VWP general permit shall be executed in a manner so as to minimize adverse impacts on instream beneficial uses as defined in § 62.1-10 (b) of the Code of Virginia.

2. No activity may substantially disrupt the movement of aquatic life indigenous to the water body, including those species which normally migrate through the area, unless the primary purpose of the activity is to impound water. Pipes and culverts placed in streams must be installed to maintain low flow conditions and shall be countersunk at both inlet and outlet ends of the pipe or culvert, unless otherwise specifically approved by the Department of Environmental Quality on a case-by-case basis, and as follows: The requirement to countersink does not apply to extensions or maintenance of existing pipes and culverts that are not countersunk, floodplain pipes and culverts being placed above ordinary high water, pipes and culverts being placed on bedrock, or pipes and culverts required to be placed on slopes 5.0% or greater. Bedrock encountered during construction must be identified and approved in advance of a design change where the countersunk condition cannot be met. Pipes and culverts 24 inches or less in diameter shall be countersunk three inches below the natural stream bed elevations, and pipes and culverts greater than 24 inches shall be countersunk at least six inches below the natural stream bed elevations. Hydraulic capacity shall be determined based on the reduced capacity due to the countersunk position. In all stream crossings appropriate measures shall be implemented to minimize any disruption of aquatic life movement.

3. Wet or uncured concrete shall be prohibited from entry into flowing surface waters, unless the area is contained within a cofferdam and the work is performed in the dry or unless otherwise approved by the Department of Environmental Quality. Excess or waste concrete shall not be disposed of in flowing surface waters or washed into flowing surface waters.

4. All fill material shall be clean and free of contaminants in toxic concentrations or amounts in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations.

5. Erosion and sedimentation controls shall be designed in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992, or for mining activities covered by this general permit, the standards issued by the Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy that are effective as those in the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992. These controls shall be placed prior to clearing and grading and maintained in good working order to minimize impacts to state waters. These controls shall remain in place until the area is stabilized and shall then be removed.

6. Exposed slopes and streambanks shall be stabilized immediately upon completion of work in each permitted impact area. All denuded areas shall be properly stabilized in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992.

7. All construction, construction access (e.g., cofferdams, sheetpiling, and causeways) and demolition activities associated with the project shall be accomplished in a manner that minimizes construction or waste materials from entering surface waters to the maximum extent practicable, unless authorized by this VWP general permit.

8. No machinery may enter flowing waters, unless authorized by this VWP general permit or approved prior to entry by the Department of Environmental Quality.

9. Heavy equipment in temporarily-impacted wetland areas shall be placed on mats, geotextile fabric, or other suitable material to minimize soil disturbance to the maximum extent practicable. Equipment and materials shall be removed immediately upon completion of work.

10. All nonimpacted surface waters and compensatory mitigation areas within 50 feet of authorized activities and within the project or right-of-way limits shall be clearly flagged or marked for the life of the construction activity at that location to preclude unauthorized disturbances to these surface waters and compensatory mitigation areas during construction. The permittee shall notify contractors that no activities are to occur in these marked surface waters.

11. Temporary disturbances to surface waters during construction shall be avoided and minimized to the maximum extent practicable. All temporarily disturbed wetland areas shall be restored to preexisting conditions within 30 days of completing work at each respective temporary impact area, which shall include reestablishing preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable and planting or seeding with appropriate wetland vegetation according to cover type (i.e., emergent, scrub-shrub, or forested). The permittee shall take all appropriate measures to promote and maintain revegetation of temporarily disturbed wetland areas with wetland vegetation through the second year post-disturbance. All temporarily impacted streams and streambanks shall be restored to their preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable within 30 days following the construction at that stream segment. Streambanks shall be seeded or planted with the same vegetation cover type originally present, including any necessary supplemental erosion control grasses. Invasive species identified on the Department of Conservation and Recreation's Virginia Invasive Plant Species List shall not be used to the maximum extent practicable or without prior approval from the Department of Environmental Quality.

12. Materials (including fill, construction debris, and excavated and woody materials) temporarily stockpiled in wetlands shall be placed on mats or geotextile fabric, immediately stabilized to prevent entry into state waters, managed such that leachate does not enter state waters, and completely removed within 30 days following completion of that construction activity. Disturbed areas shall be returned to preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable; restored within 30 days following removal of the stockpile; and restored with the same vegetation cover type originally present, including any necessary supplemental erosion control grasses. Invasive species identified on the Department of Conservation and Recreation's Virginia Invasive Plant Species List shall not be used to the maximum extent practicable or without prior approval from the Department of Environmental Quality.

13. Continuous flow of perennial springs shall be maintained by the installation of spring boxes, french drains, or other similar structures.

14. The permittee shall employ measures to prevent spills of fuels or lubricants into state waters.

15. The permittee shall conduct activities in accordance with the time-of-year restrictions recommended by the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Wildlife Resources, the Virginia Marine Resources Commission, or other interested and affected agencies, as contained, when applicable, in Department of Environmental Quality VWP general permit coverage, and shall ensure that all contractors are aware of the time-of-year restrictions imposed.

16. Water quality standards shall not be violated as a result of the construction activities.

17. If stream channelization or relocation is required, all work in surface waters shall be done in the dry, unless otherwise authorized by the Department of Environmental Quality, and all flows shall be diverted around the channelization or relocation area until the new channel is stabilized. This work shall be accomplished by leaving a plug at the inlet and outlet ends of the new channel during excavation. Once the new channel has been stabilized, flow shall be routed into the new channel by first removing the downstream plug and then the upstream plug. The rerouted stream flow must be fully established before construction activities in the old stream channel can begin.

C. Road crossings.

1. Access roads and associated bridges, pipes, and culverts shall be constructed to minimize the adverse effects on surface waters to the maximum extent practicable. Access roads constructed above preconstruction elevations and contours in surface waters must be bridged, piped, or culverted to maintain surface flows.

2. Installation of road crossings shall occur in the dry via the implementation of cofferdams, sheetpiling, stream diversions, or similar structures.

D. Utility lines.

1. All utility line work in surface waters shall be performed in a manner that minimizes disturbance, and the area must be returned to its preconstruction elevations and contours with topsoil from the impact area where practicable and restored within 30 days of completing work in the area, unless otherwise authorized the Department of Environmental Quality. Restoration shall be the seeding of planting of the same vegetation cover type originally present, including any necessary supplemental erosion control grasses. Invasive specifies identified on the Department of Conservation and Recreation's Virginia Invasive Plant Species List shall not be used to the maximum extent practicable or without prior approval from the Department of Environmental Quality.

2. Material resulting from trench excavation may be temporarily sidecast into wetlands not to exceed a total of 90 days, provided the material is not placed in a manner such that it is dispersed by currents or other forces.

3. The trench for a utility line cannot be constructed in a manner that drains wetlands (e.g., backfilling with extensive gravel layers creating a french drain effect.). For example, utility lines may be backfilled with clay blocks to ensure that the trench does not drain surface waters through which the utility line is installed.

E. Stream modification and stream bank protection.

1. Riprap bank stabilization shall be of an appropriate size and design in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992.

2. Riprap apron for all outfalls shall be designed in accordance with the Virginia Erosion and Sediment Control Handbook, Third Edition, 1992.

3. For stream bank protection activities, the structure and backfill shall be placed as close to the stream bank as practicable. No material shall be placed in excess of the minimum necessary for erosion protection.

4. All stream bank protection structures shall be located to eliminate or minimize impacts to vegetated wetlands to the maximum extent practicable.

5. Asphalt and materials containing asphalt or other toxic substances shall not be used in the construction of submerged sills or breakwaters.

6. Redistribution of existing stream substrate for the purpose of erosion control is prohibited.

7. No material removed from the stream bottom shall be disposed of in surface waters, unless otherwise authorized by this VWP general permit.

F. Dredging.

1. Dredging depths shall be determined and authorized according to the proposed use and controlling depths outside the area to be dredged.

2. Dredging shall be accomplished in a manner that minimizes disturbance of the bottom and minimizes turbidity levels in the water column.

3. If evidence of impaired water quality, such as a fish kill, is observed during the dredging, dredging operations shall cease, and the Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified immediately.

4. Barges used for the transportation of dredge material shall be filled in such a manner to prevent the overflow of dredged materials.

5. Double handling of dredged material in state waters shall not be permitted.

6. For navigation channels the following shall apply:

a. A buffer of four times the depth of the dredge cut shall be maintained between the bottom edge of the design channel and the channelward limit of wetlands, or a buffer of 15 feet shall be maintained from the dredged cut and the channelward edge of wetlands, whichever is greater. This landward limit of buffer shall be flagged and inspected prior to construction.

b. Side slope cuts of the dredging area shall not exceed a two-horizontal-to-one-vertical slope to prevent slumping of material into the dredged area.

7. A dredged material management plan for the designated upland disposal site shall be submitted and approved 30 days prior to initial dredging activity.

8. Pipeline outfalls and spillways shall be located at opposite ends of the dewatering area to allow for maximum retention and settling time. Filter fabric shall be used to line the dewatering area and to cover the outfall pipe to further reduce sedimentation to state waters.

9. The dredge material dewatering area shall be of adequate size to contain the dredge material and to allow for adequate dewatering and settling out of sediment prior to discharge back into state waters.

10. The dredge material dewatering area shall utilize an earthen berm or straw bales covered with filter fabric along the edge of the area to contain the dredged material, filter bags, or other similar filtering practices, any of which shall be properly stabilized prior to placing the dredged material within the containment area.

11. Overtopping of the dredge material containment berms with dredge materials shall be strictly prohibited.

G. Stormwater management facilities.

1. Stormwater management facilities shall be installed in accordance with best management practices and watershed protection techniques (e.g., vegetated buffers, siting considerations to minimize adverse effects to aquatic resources, bioengineering methods incorporated into the facility design to benefit water quality and minimize adverse effects to aquatic resources) that provide for long-term aquatic resources protection and enhancement, to the maximum extent practicable.

2. Compensation for unavoidable impacts shall not be allowed within maintenance areas of stormwater management facilities.

3. Maintenance activities within stormwater management facilities shall not require additional permit coverage or compensation provided that the maintenance activities do not exceed the original contours of the facility, as approved and constructed, and is accomplished in designated maintenance areas as indicated in the facility maintenance or design plan or when unavailable, an alternative plan approved by the Department of Environmental Quality.

Part II. Construction and Compensation Requirements, Monitoring, and Reporting.

A. Minimum compensation requirements.

1. The permittee shall provide any required compensation for impacts in accordance with the conditions in this VWP general permit, the coverage letter, and the chapter promulgating the general permit. For all compensation that requires a protective mechanism, including preservation of surface waters or buffers, the permittee shall record the approved protective mechanism in the chain of title to the property, or an equivalent instrument for government-owned lands, and proof of recordation shall be submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality prior to commencing impacts in surface waters.

2. Compensation options that may be considered under this VWP general permit shall meet the criteria in 9VAC25-210-116 and 9VAC25-690-70.

3. The permittee-responsible compensation site or sites depicted in the conceptual compensation plan submitted with the application shall constitute the compensation site. A site change may require a modification to coverage.

4. For compensation involving the purchase of mitigation bank credits or the purchase of in-lieu fee program credits, the permittee shall not initiate work in permitted impact areas until documentation of the mitigation bank credit purchase or of the in-lieu fee program credit purchase has been submitted to and received by the Department of Environmental Quality.

5. The final compensation plan shall be submitted to and approved by the board prior to a construction activity in permitted impact areas. The board shall review and provide written comments on the final plan within 30 days of receipt or it shall be deemed approved. The final plan as approved by the board shall be an enforceable requirement of any coverage under this VWP general permit. Deviations from the approved final plan shall be submitted and approved in advance by the board.

a. The final permittee-responsible wetlands compensation plan shall include:

(1) The complete information on all components of the conceptual compensation plan.

(2) A summary of the type and acreage of existing wetland impacts anticipated during the construction of the compensation site and the proposed compensation for these impacts; a site access plan; a monitoring plan, including proposed success criteria, monitoring goals, and the location of photo-monitoring stations, monitoring wells, vegetation sampling points, and reference wetlands or streams, if available; an abatement and control plan for undesirable plant species; an erosion and sedimentation control plan; a construction schedule; and the final protective mechanism for the compensation site or sites, including all surface waters and buffer areas within its boundaries.

(3) The approved protective mechanism. The protective mechanism shall be recorded in the chain of title to the property, or an equivalent instrument for government-owned lands, and proof of recordation shall be submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality prior to commencing impacts in surface waters.

b. The final permittee-responsible stream compensation plan shall include:

(1) The complete information on all components of the conceptual compensation plan.

(2) An evaluation, discussion, and plan drawing or drawings of existing conditions on the proposed compensation stream, including the identification of functional and physical deficiencies for which the measures are proposed, and summary of geomorphologic measurements (e.g., stream width, entrenchment ratio, width-depth ratio, sinuosity, slope, substrate, etc.); a site access plan; a monitoring plan, including a monitoring and reporting schedule, monitoring design and methodologies for success, proposed success criteria, location of photo-monitoring stations, vegetation sampling points, survey points, bank pins, scour chains, and reference streams; an abatement and control plan for undesirable plant species; an erosion and sedimentation control plan, if appropriate; a construction schedule; a plan-view drawing depicting the pattern and all compensation measures being employed; a profile drawing; cross-sectional drawing or drawings of the proposed compensation stream; and the final protective mechanism for the protection of the compensation site or sites, including all surface waters and buffer areas within its boundaries.

(3) The approved protective mechanism. The protective mechanism shall be recorded in the chain of title to the property, or an equivalent instrument for government-owned lands, and proof of recordation shall be submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality prior to commencing impacts in surface waters.

6. The following criteria shall apply to permittee-responsible wetland or stream compensation:

a. The vegetation used shall be native species common to the area, shall be suitable for growth in local wetland or riparian conditions, and shall be from areas within the same or adjacent U.S. Department of Agriculture Plant Hardiness Zone or Natural Resources Conservation Service Land Resource Region as that of the project site. Planting of woody plants shall occur when vegetation is normally dormant, unless otherwise approved in the final wetlands or stream compensation plan or plans.

b. All work in permitted impact areas shall cease if compensation site construction has not commenced within 180 days of commencement of project construction, unless otherwise authorized by the board.

c. The Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified in writing prior to the initiation of construction activities at the compensation site.

d. Point sources of stormwater runoff shall be prohibited from entering a wetland compensation site prior to treatment by appropriate best management practices. Appropriate best management practices may include sediment traps, grassed waterways, vegetated filter strips, debris screens, oil and grease separators, or forebays.

e. The success of the compensation shall be based on meeting the success criteria established in the approved final compensation plan.

f. If the wetland or stream compensation area fails to meet the specified success criteria in a particular monitoring year, other than the final monitoring year, the reasons for this failure shall be determined, and a corrective action plan shall be submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality for approval with or before that year's monitoring report. The corrective action plan shall contain at minimum the proposed actions, a schedule for those actions, and a monitoring plan, and shall be implemented by the permittee in accordance with the approved schedule. Should significant changes be necessary to ensure success, the required monitoring cycle shall begin again, with monitoring year one being the year that the changes are complete, as confirmed by the Department of Environmental Quality. If the wetland or stream compensation area fails to meet the specified success criteria by the final monitoring year or if the wetland or stream compensation area has not met the stated restoration goals, reasons for this failure shall be determined and a corrective action plan, including proposed actions, a schedule, and a monitoring plan, shall be submitted with the final year monitoring report for Department of Environmental Quality approval. Corrective action shall be implemented by the permittee in accordance with the approved schedule. Annual monitoring shall be required to continue until two sequential, annual reports indicate that all criteria have been successfully satisfied and the site has met the overall restoration goals (e.g., that corrective actions were successful).

g. The surveyed wetland boundary for the wetlands compensation site shall be based on the results of the hydrology, soils, and vegetation monitoring data and shall be shown on the site plan. Calculation of total wetland acreage shall be based on that boundary at the end of the monitoring cycle. Data shall be submitted by December 31 of the final monitoring year.

h. Herbicides or algicides shall not be used in or immediately adjacent to the wetlands or stream compensation site or sites without prior authorization by the board. All vegetation removal shall be done by manual means, unless authorized by the Department of Environmental Quality in advance.

B. Impact site construction monitoring.

1. Construction activities authorized by this permit that are within impact areas shall be monitored and documented. The monitoring shall consist of:

a. Preconstruction photographs taken at each impact area prior to initiation of activities within impact areas. Photographs shall remain on the project site and depict the impact area and the nonimpacted surface waters immediately adjacent to and downgradient of each impact area. Each photograph shall be labeled to include the following information: permit number, impact area number, date and time of the photograph, name of the person taking the photograph, photograph orientation, and photograph subject description.

b. Site inspections shall be conducted by the permittee or the permittee's qualified designee once every calendar month during activities within impact areas. Monthly inspections shall be conducted in the following areas: all authorized permanent and temporary impact areas; all avoided surface waters, including wetlands, stream channels, and open water; surface water areas within 50 feet of any land disturbing activity and within the project or right-of-way limits; and all on-site permanent preservation areas required under this permit. Observations shall be recorded on the inspection form provided by the Department of Environmental Quality. The form shall be completed in its entirety for each monthly inspection and shall be kept on site and made available for review by the Department of Environmental Quality staff upon request during normal business hours. Inspections are not required during periods of no activity within impact areas.

2. Monitoring of water quality parameters shall be conducted during permanent relocation of perennial streams through new channels in the manner noted below. The permittee shall report violations of water quality standards to the Department of Environmental Quality in accordance with the procedures in 9VAC25-690-100 Part II E. Corrective measures and additional monitoring may be required if water quality standards are not met. Reporting shall not be required if water quality standards are not violated.

a. A sampling station shall be located upstream and immediately downstream of the relocated channel.

b. Temperature, pH, and dissolved oxygen (D.O.) measurements shall be taken every 30 minutes for at least two hours at each station prior to opening the new channels and immediately before opening new channels.

c. Temperature, pH, and D.O. readings shall be taken after opening the channels and every 30 minutes for at least three hours at each station.

C. Permittee-responsible wetland compensation site monitoring.

1. An as-built ground survey, or an aerial survey provided by a firm specializing in aerial surveys, shall be conducted for the entire compensation site or sites including invert elevations for all water elevation control structures and spot elevations throughout the site or sites. Aerial surveys shall include the variation from actual ground conditions, such as +/- 0.2 feet. Either type of survey shall be certified by a licensed surveyor or by a registered professional engineer to conform to the design plans. The survey shall be submitted within 60 days of completing compensation site construction. Changes or deviations in the as-built survey or aerial survey shall be shown on the survey and explained in writing.

2. Photographs shall be taken at the compensation site or sites from the permanent markers identified in the final compensation plan, and established to ensure that the same locations and view directions at the site or sites are monitored in each monitoring period. These photographs shall be taken after the initial planting and at a time specified in the final compensation plan during every monitoring year.

3. Compensation site monitoring shall begin on day one of the first complete growing season (monitoring year 1) after wetland compensation site construction activities, including planting, have been completed. Monitoring shall be required for monitoring years 1, 2, 3, and 5, unless otherwise approved by the Department of Environmental Quality. In all cases, if all success criteria have not been met in the final monitoring year, then monitoring shall be required for each consecutive year until two annual sequential reports indicate that all criteria have been successfully satisfied.

4. The establishment of wetland hydrology shall be measured during the growing season, with the location and number of monitoring wells, and frequency of monitoring for each site, set forth in the final monitoring plan. Hydrology monitoring well data shall be accompanied by precipitation data, including rainfall amounts either from on site or from the closest weather station. Once the wetland hydrology success criteria have been satisfied for a particular monitoring year, monitoring may be discontinued for the remainder of that monitoring year following Department of Environmental Quality approval. After a period of three monitoring years, the permittee may request that hydrology monitoring be discontinued, providing that adequate hydrology has been established and maintained. Hydrology monitoring shall not be discontinued without written approval from the Department of Environmental Quality.

5. The presence of hydric soils or soils under hydric conditions shall be evaluated in accordance with the final compensation plan.

6. The establishment of wetland vegetation shall be in accordance with the final compensation plan. Monitoring shall take place in August, September, or October during the growing season of each monitoring year, unless otherwise authorized in the monitoring plan.

7. The presence of undesirable plant species shall be documented.

8. All wetland compensation monitoring reports shall be submitted in accordance with 9VAC25-690-100 Part II E 6.

D. Permittee-responsible stream compensation and monitoring.

1. Riparian buffer restoration activities shall be detailed in the final compensation plan and shall include, as appropriate, the planting of a variety of native species currently growing in the site area, including appropriate seed mixtures and woody species that are bare root, balled, or burlapped. A minimum buffer width of 50 feet, measured from the top of the stream bank at bankfull elevation landward on both sides of the stream, shall be required where practical.

2. The installation of root wads, vanes, and other instream structures, shaping of the stream banks, and channel relocation shall be completed in the dry whenever practicable.

3. Livestock access to the stream and designated riparian buffer shall be limited to the greatest extent practicable.

4. Stream channel restoration activities shall be conducted in the dry or during low flow conditions. When site conditions prohibit access from the streambank or upon prior authorization from the Department of Environmental Quality, heavy equipment may be authorized for use within the stream channel.

5. Photographs shall be taken at the compensation site from the vicinity of the permanent photo-monitoring stations identified in the final compensation plan. The photograph orientation shall remain constant during all monitoring events. At a minimum, photographs shall be taken from the center of the stream, facing downstream, with a sufficient number of photographs to view the entire length of the restoration site. Photographs shall document the completed restoration conditions. Photographs shall be taken prior to site activities, during instream and riparian compensation construction activities, within one week of completion of activities, and during at least one day of each monitoring year to depict restored conditions.

6. An as-built ground survey, or an aerial survey provided by a firm specializing in aerial surveys, shall be conducted for the entire compensation site or sites. Aerial surveys shall include the variation from actual ground conditions, such as +/- 0.2 feet. The survey shall be certified by the licensed surveyor or by a registered, professional engineer to conform to the design plans. The survey shall be submitted within 60 days of completing compensation site construction. Changes or deviations from the final compensation plans in the as-built survey or aerial survey shall be shown on the survey and explained in writing.

7. Compensation site monitoring shall begin on day one of the first complete growing season (monitoring year 1) after stream compensation site construction activities, including planting, have been completed. Monitoring shall be required for monitoring years 1 and 2, unless otherwise approved by the Department of Environmental Quality. In all cases, if all success criteria have not been met in the final monitoring year, then monitoring shall be required for each consecutive year until two annual sequential reports indicate that all criteria have been successfully satisfied.

8. All stream compensation site monitoring reports shall be submitted by in accordance with 9VAC25-690-100 Part II E 6.

E. Reporting.

1. Written communications required by this VWP general permit shall be submitted to the appropriate Department of Environmental Quality office. The VWP general permit tracking number shall be included on all correspondence.

2. The Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified in writing prior to the start of construction activities at the first permitted impact area.

3. A construction status update form provided by the Department of Environmental Quality shall be completed and submitted to the Department of Environmental Quality twice per year for the duration of coverage under a VWP general permit. Forms completed in June shall be submitted by or on July 10, and forms completed in December shall be submitted by or on January 10. The form shall include reference to the VWP permit tracking number and one of the following statements for each authorized surface water impact location:

a. Construction activities have not yet started;

b. Construction activities have started;

c. Construction activities have started but are currently inactive; or

d. Construction activities are complete.

4. The Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified in writing within 30 days following the completion of all activities in all authorized impact areas.

5. The Department of Environmental Quality shall be notified in writing prior to the initiation of activities at the permittee-responsible compensation site. The notification shall include a projected schedule of activities and construction completion.

6. All permittee-responsible compensation site monitoring reports shall be submitted annually by December 31, with the exception of the last year, in which case the report shall be submitted at least 60 days prior to the expiration of the general permit, unless otherwise approved by the Department of Environmental Quality.

a. All wetland compensation site monitoring reports shall include, as applicable, the following:

(1) General description of the site including a site location map identifying photo-monitoring stations, vegetative and soil monitoring stations, monitoring wells, and wetland zones.

(2) Summary of activities completed during the monitoring year, including alterations or maintenance conducted at the site.

(3) Description of monitoring methods.

(4) Analysis of all hydrology information, including monitoring well data, precipitation data, and gauging data from streams or other open water areas, as set forth in the final compensation plan.

(5) Evaluation of hydric soils or soils under hydric conditions, as appropriate.

(6) Analysis of all vegetative community information, including woody and herbaceous species, both planted and volunteers, as set forth in the final compensation plan.

(7) Photographs labeled with the permit number, the name of the compensation site, the photo-monitoring station number, the photograph orientation, the date and time of the photograph, the name of the person taking the photograph, and a brief description of the photograph subject. This information shall be provided as a separate attachment to each photograph, if necessary. Photographs taken after the initial planting shall be included in the first monitoring report after planting is complete.

(8) Discussion of wildlife or signs of wildlife observed at the compensation site.

(9) Comparison of site conditions from the previous monitoring year and reference site.

(10) Discussion of corrective measures or maintenance activities to control undesirable species, to repair damaged water control devices, or to replace damaged planted vegetation.

(11) Corrective action plan that includes proposed actions, a schedule, and monitoring plan.

b. All stream compensation site monitoring reports shall include, as applicable, the following:

(1) General description of the site including a site location map identifying photo-monitoring stations and monitoring stations.

(2) Summary of activities completed during the monitoring year, including alterations or maintenance conducted at the site.

(3) Description of monitoring methods.

(4) Evaluation and discussion of the monitoring results in relation to the success criteria and overall goals of compensation.

(5) Photographs shall be labeled with the permit number, the name of the compensation site, the photo-monitoring station number, the photograph orientation, the date and time of the photograph, the name of the person taking the photograph, and a brief description of the photograph subject. Photographs taken prior to compensation site construction activities, during instream and riparian restoration activities, and within one week of completion of activities shall be included in the first monitoring report.

(6) Discussion of alterations, maintenance, or major storm events resulting in significant change in stream profile or cross section, and corrective actions conducted at the stream compensation site.

(7) Documentation of undesirable plant species and summary of abatement and control measures.

(8) Summary of wildlife or signs of wildlife observed at the compensation site.

(9) Comparison of site conditions from the previous monitoring year and reference site, and as-built survey, if applicable.

(10) Corrective action plan that includes proposed actions, a schedule and monitoring plan.

(11) Additional submittals that were approved by the Department of Environmental Quality in the final compensation plan.

7. The permittee shall notify the Department of Environmental Quality in writing when unusual or potentially complex conditions are encountered which require debris removal or involve potentially toxic substance. Measures to remove the obstruction, material, or toxic substance or to change the location of a structure are prohibited until approved by the Department of Environmental Quality.

8. The permittee shall report fish kills or spills of oil or fuel immediately upon discovery. If spills or fish kills occur between the hours of 8:15 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, the appropriate Department of Environmental Quality regional office shall be notified; otherwise, the Department of Emergency Management shall be notified at 1-800-468-8892.

9. Violations of state water quality standards shall be reported to the appropriate Department of Environmental Quality office no later than the end of the business day following discovery.

10. The permittee shall notify the Department of Environmental Quality no later than the end of the third business day following the discovery of additional impacts to surface waters including wetlands, stream channels, and open water that are not authorized by the Department of Environmental Quality or to any required preservation areas. The notification shall include photographs, estimated acreage or linear footage of impacts, and a description of the impacts.

11. Submittals required by this VWP general permit shall contain the following signed certification statement:

"I certify under penalty of law that this document and all attachments were prepared under my direction or supervision in accordance with a system designed to assure that qualified personnel properly gather and evaluate the information submitted. Based on my inquiry of the person or persons who manage the system, or those persons directly responsible for gathering the information, the information submitted is, to the best of my knowledge and belief, true, accurate, and complete. I am aware that there are significant penalties for submitting false information, including the possibility of fine and imprisonment for knowing violation."

Part III. Conditions Applicable to All VWP General Permits.

A. Duty to comply. The permittee shall comply with all conditions, limitations, and other requirements of the VWP general permit; any requirements in coverage granted under this VWP general permit; the Clean Water Act, as amended; and the State Water Control Law and regulations adopted pursuant to it. Any VWP general permit violation or noncompliance is a violation of the Clean Water Act and State Water Control Law and is grounds for (i) enforcement action, (ii) VWP general permit coverage termination for cause, (iii) VWP general permit coverage revocation, (iv) denial of application for coverage, or (v) denial of an application for a modification to VWP general permit coverage. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to relieve the permittee of the duty to comply with all applicable federal and state statutes, regulations, and toxic standards and prohibitions.

B. Duty to mitigate. The permittee shall take all reasonable steps to minimize or prevent impacts in violation of the VWP general permit which may have a reasonable likelihood of adversely affecting human health or the environment.

C. Reopener. This VWP general permit may be reopened to modify its conditions when the circumstances on which the previous VWP general permit was based have materially and substantially changed, or special studies conducted by the board or the permittee show material and substantial change since the time the VWP general permit was issued and thereby constitute cause for revoking and reissuing the VWP general permit.

D. Compliance with state and federal law. Compliance with this VWP general permit constitutes compliance with the VWP permit requirements of the State Water Control Law. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to preclude the institution of any legal action under or relieve the permittee from any responsibilities, liabilities, or other penalties established pursuant to any other state law or regulation or under the authority preserved by § 510 of the Clean Water Act.

E. Property rights. The issuance of this VWP general permit does not convey property rights in either real or personal property or any exclusive privileges, nor does it authorize injury to private property, any invasion of personal property rights, or any infringement of federal, state, or local laws or regulations.

F. Severability. The provisions of this VWP general permit are severable.

G. Inspection and entry. Upon presentation of credential, the permittee shall allow the board or any duly authorized agent of the board, at reasonable times and under reasonable circumstances, to enter upon the permittee's property, public or private, and have access to inspect and copy any records that must be kept as part of the VWP general permit conditions; to inspect any facilities, operations, or practices (including monitoring and control equipment) regulated or required under the VWP general permit; and to sample or monitor any substance, parameter, or activity for the purpose of assuring compliance with the conditions of the VWP general permit or as otherwise authorized by law. For the purpose of this section, the time for inspection shall be deemed reasonable during regular business hours. Nothing contained herein shall make an inspection time unreasonable during an emergency.

H. Transferability of VWP general permit coverage. VWP general permit coverage may be transferred to another permittee when all of the criteria listed in this subsection are met. On the date of the VWP general permit coverage transfer, the transferred VWP general permit coverage shall be as fully effective as if it had been granted directly to the new permittee.

1. The current permittee notifies the board of the proposed transfer of the general permit coverage and provides a written agreement between the current and new permittees containing a specific date of transfer of VWP general permit responsibility, coverage, and liability to the new permittee, or that the current permittee will retain such responsibility, coverage, or liability, including liability for compliance with the requirements of enforcement activities related to the authorized activity.

2. The board does not within 15 days notify the current and new permittees of its intent to modify or revoke and reissue the VWP general permit.

I. Notice of planned change. VWP general permit coverage may be modified subsequent to issuance in accordance with 9VAC25-690-80.

J. VWP general permit coverage termination for cause. VWP general permit coverage is subject to termination for cause by the board after public notice and opportunity for a hearing pursuant to § 62.1-44.15:02 of the Code of Virginia. Reasons for termination for cause are as follows:

1. Noncompliance by the permittee with any provision of this chapter, any condition of the VWP general permit, or any requirement in general permit coverage;

2. The permittee's failure in the application or during the process of granting VWP general permit coverage to disclose fully all relevant facts or the permittee's misrepresentation of any relevant facts at any time;

3. The permittee's violation of a special or judicial order;

4. A determination by the board that the authorized activity endangers human health or the environment and can be regulated to acceptable levels by a modification to VWP general permit coverage or a termination;

5. A change in any condition that requires either a temporary or permanent reduction or elimination of any activity controlled by the VWP general permit; or

6. A determination that the authorized activity has ceased and that the compensation for unavoidable adverse impacts has been successfully completed.

K. The board may terminate VWP general permit coverage without cause when the permittee is no longer a legal entity due to death or dissolution or when a company is no longer authorized to conduct business in the Commonwealth. The termination shall be effective 30 days after notice of the proposed termination is sent to the last known address of the permittee or registered agent, unless the permittee objects within that time. If the permittee does object during that period, the board shall follow the applicable procedures for termination under §§ 62.1-44.15:02 and 62.1-44.15:25 of the Code of Virginia.

L. VWP general permit coverage termination by consent. The permittee shall submit a request for termination by consent within 30 days of completing or canceling all authorized activities requiring notification under 9VAC25-690-50 A and all compensatory mitigation requirements. When submitted for project completion, the request for termination by consent shall constitute a notice of project completion in accordance with 9VAC25-210-130 F. The director may accept this termination of coverage on behalf of the board. The permittee shall submit the following information:

1. Name, mailing address, and telephone number;

2. Name and location of the activity;

3. The VWP general permit tracking number; and

4. One of the following certifications:

a. For project completion:

"I certify under penalty of law that all activities and any required compensatory mitigation authorized by the VWP general permit and general permit coverage have been completed. I understand that by submitting this notice of termination I am no longer authorized to perform activities in surface waters in accordance with the VWP general permit and general permit coverage, and that performing activities in surface waters is unlawful where the activity is not authorized by the VWP permit or coverage, unless otherwise excluded from obtaining coverage. I also understand that the submittal of this notice does not release me from liability for any violations of the VWP general permit or coverage."

b. For project cancellation:

"I certify under penalty of law that the activities and any required compensatory mitigation authorized by the VWP general permit and general permit coverage will not occur. I understand that by submitting this notice of termination I am no longer authorized to perform activities in surface waters in accordance with the VWP general permit and general permit coverage, and that performing activities in surface waters is unlawful where the activity is not authorized by the VWP permit or coverage, unless otherwise excluded from obtaining coverage. I also understand that the submittal of this notice does not release me from liability for any violations of the VWP general permit or coverage, nor does it allow me to resume the authorized activities without reapplication and coverage."

c. For events beyond permittee control, the permittee shall provide a detailed explanation of the events, to be approved by the Department of Environmental Quality, and the following certification statement:

"I certify under penalty of law that the activities or the required compensatory mitigation authorized by the VWP general permit and general permit coverage have changed as the result of events beyond my control (see attached). I understand that by submitting this notice of termination I am no longer authorized to perform activities in surface waters in accordance with the VWP general permit and general permit coverage, and that performing activities in surface waters is unlawful where the activity is not authorized by the VWP permit or coverage, unless otherwise excluded from obtaining coverage. I also understand that the submittal of this notice does not release me from liability for any violations of the VWP general permit or coverage, nor does it allow me to resume the authorized activities without reapplication and coverage."

M. Civil and criminal liability. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to relieve the permittee from civil and criminal penalties for noncompliance.

N. Oil and hazardous substance liability. Nothing in this VWP general permit shall be construed to preclude the institution of legal action or relieve the permittee from any responsibilities, liabilities, or penalties to which the permittee is or may be subject under § 311 of the Clean Water Act or §§ 62.1-44.34:14 through 62.1-44.34:23 of the State Water Control Law.

O. Duty to cease or confine activity. It shall not be a defense for a permittee in an enforcement action that it would have been necessary to halt or reduce the activity for which VWP general permit coverage has been granted in order to maintain compliance with the conditions of the VWP general permit or coverage.

P. Duty to provide information.

1. The permittee shall furnish to the board any information that the board may request to determine whether cause exists for modifying, revoking, or terminating VWP permit coverage or to determine compliance with the VWP general permit or general permit coverage. The permittee shall also furnish to the board, upon request, copies of records required to be kept by the permittee.

2. Plans, maps, conceptual reports, and other relevant information shall be submitted as required by the board prior to commencing construction.

Q. Monitoring and records requirements.

1. Monitoring of parameters, other than pollutants, shall be conducted according to approved analytical methods as specified in the VWP general permit. Analysis of pollutants will be conducted according to 40 CFR Part 136 (2000), Guidelines Establishing Test Procedures for the Analysis of Pollutants.

2. Samples and measurements taken for the purpose of monitoring shall be representative of the monitored activity.

3. The permittee shall retain records of all monitoring information, including all calibration and maintenance records and all original strip chart or electronic recordings for continuous monitoring instrumentation, copies of all reports required by the VWP general permit, and records of all data used to complete the application for coverage under the VWP general permit, for a period of at least three years from the date of general permit expiration. This period may be extended by request of the board at any time.

4. Records of monitoring information shall include, as appropriate:

a. The date, exact place, and time of sampling or measurements;

b. The name of the individuals who performed the sampling or measurements;

c. The date and time the analyses were performed;

d. The name of the individuals who performed the analyses;

e. The analytical techniques or methods supporting the information such as observations, readings, calculations, and bench data used;

f. The results of such analyses; and

g. Chain of custody documentation.

R. Unauthorized discharge of pollutants. Except in compliance with this VWP general permit, it shall be unlawful for the permittee to:

1. Discharge into state waters sewage, industrial wastes, other wastes, or any noxious or deleterious substances;

2. Excavate in a wetland;

3. Otherwise alter the physical, chemical, or biological properties of state waters and make them detrimental to the public health, to animal or aquatic life, or to the uses of such waters for domestic or industrial consumption, for recreation, or for other uses; or

4. On and after October 1, 2001, conduct the following activities in a wetland:

a. New activities to cause draining that significantly alters or degrades existing wetland acreage or functions;

b. Filling or dumping;

c. Permanent flooding or impounding; or

d. New activities that cause significant alteration or degradation of existing wetland acreage or functions.

S. Duty to reapply. Any permittee desiring to continue a previously authorized activity after the expiration date of the VWP general permit shall comply with the provisions in 9VAC25-690-27.