Administrative Code

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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 4. Conservation And Natural Resources
Agency 20. Marine Resources Commission
Chapter 1300. Living Shoreline Group 1 General Permit for Certain Living Shoreline Treatments Involving Tidal Wetlands

4VAC20-1300-40. Specific criteria.

A. The maximum fetch at the project site shall not exceed 1/2 mile in any shore angle direction. Coarse sand should be utilized for any required fill. At a minimum the sand shall contain less than 10% very fine material (passing a #100 sieve). The sand shall not be placed in a manner that raises the elevation of any existing wetland area above the elevation of jurisdictional tidal wetlands (1.5 times the mean tide range above mean low water).

B. Appropriate wetland vegetation shall be planted in all wetland areas on which sand is placed where the resulting substrate elevation is appropriate to support the growth of wetlands vegetation. If deemed necessary to improve wetland habitat or resiliency, existing wetlands vegetation may be filled provided the project does not result in a net loss in aerial coverage of wetlands vegetation. Appropriate wetlands vegetation includes only those species listed in the tidal wetlands ordinance (§ 28.2-1302 of the Code of Virginia) that are anticipated to survive at the project site elevation and normal salinity regime. The common reed, Phragmites sp., shall not typically be considered appropriate wetlands vegetation for planting purposes.

C. Fiber logs, fiber mats, and shell bags may be utilized within the jurisdictional tidal wetland area to create a sill or to otherwise support the growth of wetlands vegetation, provided they are not placed on existing vegetation and are not stacked to a height that exceeds mean high water. The bags, mats, and fiber logs shall be maintained and promptly removed should they become displaced or unexpectedly damaged. If available, appropriate biodegradable materials are encouraged. The replacement of failed fiber logs, mats, or shell bags in the same location shall be allowed without the need to receive additional authorization. Additional sand may be placed to replace any lost sand or to adjust for substrate settlement, provided the elevation of the originally proposed grade is not exceeded.

D. Temporary grazing protection may be utilized to protect wetlands vegetation and ribbed mussels until they become established. The protective structures shall be removed once the vegetation or mussels are established. Such grazing protection is encouraged and should be considered in the project design. Any requested grazing protection shall be specified in the permit application.

E. The permittee agrees to notify the commission upon completion of the project and to provide a brief monitoring report at the end of the first full growing season following planting and after the second year of establishment. The monitoring shall be undertaken between June and September of each year and shall include at a minimum the permit number, representative photos of the site, and a brief statement concerning the success of the project. Additional documentation is encouraged to allow improved evaluation of the techniques utilized.

F. Any vegetated wetlands established under this general permit shall not be cut or harvested. Areas shall be replanted as necessary to ensure there is at least no net loss of wetland vegetation within the project area during the term of the permit. If necessary to promote the establishment of wetlands vegetation, additional sand may be placed to restore the originally proposed elevation grade.

G. Any measures taken to eradicate invasive species at the project site associated with the living shoreline activity, including Phragmites sp., shall be noted in the permit application or conducted in accordance with a plan evaluated and approved by the appropriate wetlands board or locality. Such plans shall include measures to revegetate the area with appropriate native wetlands vegetation.

H. All activities undertaken in accordance with the general permit are subject to the enforcement and penalty provisions contained in Article 4 (§ 28.2-1316 et seq.) of Chapter 13 of Title 28.2 of the Code of Virginia. Failure to comply with any criteria or condition of the general permit may constitute a violation of the permit.

Statutory Authority

§ 28.2-104.1 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 32, Issue 1, eff. September 1, 2015.

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