Wetland Permitting Public Notices

PUBLIC NOTICE OF APPLICATION FOR COASTAL WETLANDS PERMIT AND WATER QUALITY CERTIFICATION

PUBLIC NOTICE OF APPLICATION
FOR COASTAL WETLANDS PERMIT
AND WATER QUALITY CERTIFICATION

The Mississippi Department of Marine Resources (MDMR) has filed an application requesting
permission to conduct regulated activities under the provision of the Coastal Wetlands Protection
Law Act, Title 49, Chapter 27, Mississippi Code of 1972.
The applicant is proposing to establish an off-bottom oyster aquaculture lease site in the
Mississippi Sound south of Deer Island, Biloxi, Harrison County, Mississippi. The dimensions of the
proposed area are 5,609 feet in length and 695 feet in width, totaling 85 acres. The center of the
project site is located at approximately 30.364261°N Latitude and
-88.844084°W Longitude. A portion of the project would be within the 750-yard riparian rights zone
of the Deer Island Coastal Preserve. The project would include an area measuring between 2 and
10 acres operated by the DMR for instruction and training of interested parties in all aspects of
operating an oyster aquaculture enterprise. Construction on these areas will be done prior to the
beginning of the program. The remaining areas will be available for lease from interested oyster
farmers in 1 to 5 acre parcels and will be constructed in stages as they are leased. Two methods of
oyster aquaculture will be utilized: the walking long-line method and floating basket system. Each
individual lease holder will be allowed to determine which off-bottom aquaculture method(s) they
would prefer to utilize. No more than 40 wooden pilings, each up to 8 inches in diameter, may be
placed per acre and will not exceed 5 feet in height above the mean high tide line. In addition, no
more than 1,200, 2-inch diameter pvc pipes may be placed per acre for leased areas utilizing the
walking long-line method of oyster culture. MDMR is requesting a change to the Coastal Wetlands
Use Plan from a Preservation (P) and General Use (G) classification to a Special Use (S2) –
Leased wetlands for oyster cultivation) and a Special Use (S3) ̶ Leased wetlands by the State for
other purposes-in this case: off bottom oyster cultivation.
This public notice, project diagrams, and a copy of the full application may be accessed on
MDMR’s website at : http://www.dmr.ms.gov/index.php/coastal-resourcesmanagement/
wetland-permitting.
In compliance with Section 401 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C. 1251, 1341),
as amended by PL 95-217, the applicant will request certification from the Office of Pollution
Control that the above-mentioned activity will be in compliance with applicable provisions of
Section 301 (33 U.S.C. 1311), Section 302 (33 U.S.C. 1312), Section 303 (U.S.C. 1313), Section
306 (U.S.C. 1316), and Section 307 (U.S.C. 1317) of the Act and appropriate requirements of the
State Law.
A public hearing will be held on September 5, 2017 at 5:30 p.m. at the Bolton Building auditorium
located at 1141 Bayview Avenue, Biloxi, MS. The public hearing will not be a question and answer
session, but will be a medium for concerned parties to make comments about the proposed project
for the public record. Prior to the hearing the applicant’s representatives will be available for
questions regarding the proposed project. Any person wishing to make comments or objections to
the proposed regulated activity must submit those comments in writing to the Department of Marine
Resources at 1141 Bayview Avenue, Biloxi, Mississippi 39530 before 1:00 p.m. on the day
September 8, 2017.

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