Army Corps 404 Permit Process

While Local Agencies are responsible for obtaining all required permits independent of Caltrans oversight, be advised, for 404 and 408 permits the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) is now requiring a Historic Property Survey Report (HPSR) or Screening Memo with submittal of the permit application. See below for more detailed information on the Army Corps 404 permit process below.

Army Corps 404 Permit Process

At the time of the execution of the 2014 Section 106 PA, a compliance form was developed in tandem between Caltrans and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) for use with the 404 permit application, in order to convey summary information about Caltrans’ Section 106 efforts to USACE. Over the past three years, it has become apparent that the form was not adequate for USACE documentary needs, although the Caltrans Division of Environmental Analysis (DEA) Cultural Studies Office worked with USACE staff toward an acceptable revision to the compliance form. Based on recent meetings and discussions between DEA and USACE, it was decided that a copy of the Section 106 documentation (HPSR with attachments or Screening Memo) would be included with the 404 permit application. The USACE compliance form will no longer be used.  The following have been agreed to by USACE management and staff for all three Corps Districts:

  1. Transmittal of the Section 106 documentation is with the understanding that it is for the Corps files only and no comments or revisions will be forthcoming from the Corps, unless the Corps is aware of a potential historic property within the APE that was not addressed.  In that case, the Corps should contact the District applicant and the Section 106 Branch Chief of the Caltrans Cultural Studies Office and work with them on how to address this late identification.
  2. Transmittal of the Section 106 documentation may be submitted to the Corps electronically, i.e. via email or disk, dependent on the size of the file. Hard copies are not required.
  3. Any staff at the Corps receiving the HPSR or Screening Memo understands that information contained within the documents may contain confidential site specific information about archaeological sites, Native American sacred sites, Tribal Cultural Resources, etc.  As set forth in Stipulation XX.H of the Section 106 PA, the parties to the PA acknowledge and ensure that “all actions and documentation prescribed by this Agreement are, where necessary, consistent with the requirements of NHPS section 304, 36 CFR § 800.11(c), 5 USC § 552 as amended…, and California Government Code section 6254.10 and 6254 (r).” As signatories to the Section 106 PA, Caltrans and the Corps agree to and will follow this stipulation by ensuring that the confidential information is not disclosed to the public.

This change is immediate, so for any Section 404 permits that are in process, please ensure that a copy of the HPSR and attachments (or Screening Memo) is included with the application.  Additionally, it is suggested that for Section 408 permits a copy of the HPSR (plus attachments) or the Screened Undertaking be provided with the application, in order to facilitate the permit approval.

If you have questions, please contact Gail St. John at (530)-741-7116 or gail.st.john@dot.ca.gov.