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NEPA

Categorical Exclusion Evaluation for Dillerville Yard Approved

Since the Dillerville Rail Yard project is receiving federal funding from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), the project must comply with applicable laws and regulations, including the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended (NEPA).

Under NEPA, there are three (3) classes of action for preparing environmental documentation on projects using Federal funds:

•    Class I Actions (Environmental Impact Statements):  Actions that would significantly affect the environment require preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).
•    Class II Actions (Categorical Exclusions):  Actions that do not have a significant environmental affect require the preparation of a Categorical Exclusion Evaluation (CEE).
•    Class III Actions (Environmental Assessments): An Environmental Assessment (EA) is prepared for those projects where the significance of environmental impacts is not clearly established.

Based on available information and the nature of the proposed action, an initial class of action determination was made by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) and FHWA in November of 2007 that the Dillerville Yard Consolidation Project would fit the definition and qualify as a project that could be processed for review under NEPA as a Categorical Exclusion Evaluation (CEE) according to both PennDOT and FHWA guidelines. This class of action determination was confirmed in April 2008 after meeting with the FHWA and PennDOT to discuss the outcome of public input and coordination efforts relative to the project, and to review the results of technical studies conducted to address public issues and concerns. Therefore, FHWA and PennDOT concluded that the project met the criteria for a CEE under NEPA.

A Categorical Exclusion Evaluation was prepared using PennDOT’s Publication 294, Categorical Exclusion Evaluation Handbook to document the findings of the CEE process. The CEE was prepared in PennDOT’s Electronic Contract Management System, CE/EA Expert System. The CEE prepared for the project was approved on June 26, 2009. The approved CEE document and all supporting attachments can be viewed by clicking on the link provided below.

ApprovedCEE.pdf

Correspondence

September 12, 2008
Dan E. Gillis,TRRAAC, to Kathleen Horvath, Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (download PDF)

September 25, 2008
Horvath responds to Gillis (download PDF)

Dan E. Gillis, TRRAAC, to Keith Orris(download PDF)

September 29, 2008
Orris responds to Gillis (download PDF)

September 7, 2008

August 19, 2008
Deborah Suciu Smith, Federal Highway Administration, to lawyer William J. Cluck (download PDF)