Overview of endangered species regulations Purpose of Habitat Conservation Plans Review Balcones Canyonlands Conservation Plan (BCCP)
Sunset Valley involvement with BCCP- Gaines Greenbelt Benefits and Impacts of formal partnership Planning and Environmental Committee recommendation Next Step
Purpose Provide a means whereby the ecosystems upon which endangered and threatened species may be conserved. Defines listing criteria, recovery, prohibited acts, enforcement, and exceptions. Applies to fish, plants, and wildlife.
Unlawful for a person to take a listed animal without a permit: Defined as “to harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, trap, capture, or collect or attempt to engage in any such conduct.” Harm is defined as “an act which actually kills or injures wildlife. This includes significant habitat modification or degradation that kills or injures wildlife by significantly impairing essential behavioral patterns, including breeding, feeding, or sheltering.”
ESA amended in 1982 Habitat Conservation Plans Impact of activities Mitigation of impacts Alternatives Incidental Take Permits
One of the first regional, multi-species Habitat Conservation Plan/Incidental Take Permit issued by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service(USFWS). 30 year permit issued in 1996. City of Austin and Travis County are joint permit holders.
Allows for development outside of preserve land and covers mitigation for participating agencies. Requires preserving 30,428 acres of endangered species habitat. Ongoing monitoring, management, and patrol of preserved habitat. Protects 8 endangered species and 27 species of concern. Alternative to dealing with USFWS directly.
Since 1998 Sunset Valley has consulted with BCCP representatives. Managing Partner Agreement LCRA
Gifted to the City in 1991. Property must be dedicated as park, recreational, greenbelt and/or preserve purposes for use by the public. Violations of deed results in land returning to previous property owners. Habitat for the endangered Golden- cheeked Warbler.
Proposal Gaines Greenbelt is included as part of the larger Balcones Canyonlands Preserve. Sunset Valley continues to own and manage the land. Manage lands under the “Land Management Plans and Guidelines” of BCCP permit. Submit an annual summary of management activities. Benefit to BCCP Adds 21 acres to the over 28,000 acres of the Balcones Canyonlands Preserve.
Sunset Valley would be part of the regional protection of endangered species. The 21 acres of the Gaines Greenbelt could be used as a mitigation bank. Access and trail use would remain the same. Endangered Species Act-No Surprises
Management Activities No additional funds for management activities, because these are already being done. Staff time to attend land management meetings and submit reports. Additional assistance and support from BCCP partners would be available. Greater support for continued tract protection. Violet Crown Trail
Planning and Environmental Committee has recommended joining the BCCP.
Authorize staff to meet with City of Austin and Travis County to pursue a Managing Partner Agreement. Questions?