I wanted to let you know about an important update to the environmental process for the Kodiak Airport Runway Safety Area improvements. Late last week, the FAA Alaskan Regional Administrator signed the Record of Decision (ROD) on the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for the Runway Safety Area Project. The ROD represents the formal approval required to proceed with the project. Funds are currently being programmed for design and construction. Notices that let the public know the ROD is available will be published in the Kodiak and Anchorage papers as well the Federal Register. Copies of the ROD will be available within the next week at:
- The project website: www.KodiakAirportEIS.com
- A. Holmes Memorial Library, 319 Lower Mill Bay Road, Kodiak, AK 99615
- FAA Airports Division office in downtown Anchorage at 222 W. 7th Avenue. Please call or email me before you visit, so I can coordinate
The ROD explains why the project was approved and includes a description of the final mitigation package, which has been expanded since the release of the FEIS. After a request from the Sun’aq Tribe, the FAA worked with the Tribe to further address possible impacts from the proposed project on the Buskin River fishery. Through the resulting government-to-government coordination meetings, the FAA came up with a solution to address effects on the traditional subsistence practices of tribal members and other individuals using the fishery for harvest. The FAA decided that a five-year post-construction monitoring effort should be conducted to document the change in habitat and species usage around the mouth of the Buskin River. This monitoring will be in addition to the mitigation described previously, including:
- Paying a $2 million in-lieu fee payment to purchase high-value intertidal, estuarine and/or coastal habitat in the Kodiak Archipelago Islands area for preservation.
- Providing the Alaska Department of Fish & Game with $200,000 to fund additional subsistence management programs on the Buskin River for four years.
Leslie A. Grey
Environmental Protection Specialist
FAA - Alaskan Region, Airports Division