ECORP Assists Hangar 24 Charities with Airfest! 2019

hangar fest
ECORP Assists Hangar 24 Charities with Airfest! 2019
Flying Tigers

Flying Tigers Then and Now. P-40 Tomahawk and A-10 Thunderbolt.

Earlier this year, ECORP assisted Hangar 24 Charities with discounted and pro-bono environmental services to facilitate the 2019 Airfest! at Redlands Municipal Airport.  The annual event raises money which is donated to the variety of veterans’ and children’s charities that Hangar 24 Charities supports.
For a number of years, the event has used a parcel of land adjacent to the airport for some of their parking. The parcel is known to harbor a population of the federally listed (endangered) San Bernardino kangaroo rat (SBKR).  ECORP biologists worked with the Charities’ staff to consult with the Palm Springs office of the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to develop a plan that would allow the event to take place without causing harm to SBKR.  USFWS completed an extraordinarily expedited Biological Opinion (BO) with the Federal Aviation Administration under Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act.

John Melby Makes a Pass in the Hangar 24 Muscle Biplane

ECORP biologists implemented the terms of the BO, including pre- and post-event surveys and collection of high-resolution low-altitude aerial imagery using one of our Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) – monitoring during pre-event fencing of Environmentally Sensitive Areas (ESAs, including areas with concentrations of SBKR burrows), and assisting the parking volunteers in directing parking away from the ESAs.
The two-day event, which featured military and civilian aircraft from across the nation in both static and aerial displays and flyovers, was a huge success, raising tens of thousands of dollars for Inland Empire veterans’ and children’s charities while still protecting the SBKR population.
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ECORP Welcomes Christina Torres

ChristinaTorres-photoChristina Torres joined the ECORP Biological Resources Group as an Assistant Biologist in the San Diego office. She graduated from the University of California, Davis with a B.S. in Wildlife, Fish, and Conservation Biology. Upon graduation, she spent some time in the Sierras conducting reptile surveys, vegetation surveys, and small mammal trapping for a megafires project with the U.S. Forest Service and UC Davis. In 2018, she was introduced to the world of honey bees, working as a lab technician for a bee lab at UC Davis. Christina worked on a multitude of projects that focused on the effects of various abiotic and biotic factors on honey bee health.
Samantha Alfaro Joins ECORP
Samantha AlfaroSamantha Alfaro joined the ECORP Environmental Resources Group as an Environmental Scientist in the San Diego office. She recently graduated from the University of San Diego with a B.A. in Environmental and Ocean Science and a minor in Economics. She joined ECORP part-time while finishing her degree and transitioned to full-time just in time to orchestrate the office move. Sam’s role at ECORP involves providing administrative support to ensure efficient office operation. Additionally, she has been providing technical support on various projects as she works towards a larger role in CEQA and regulatory services.
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South Sacramento Habitat Conservation Plan – Updates

sshcpThe SSHCP is adopted, and all new projects (ministerial and discretionary) within the SSHCP Plan Area will need to be evaluated to determine if the SSHCP applies. Most projects will be subject to SSHCP requirements unless they have valid existin g permits or do not alter natural land cover. The SSHCP is a regional effort that will create a streamlined federal and state permitting process, while preserving habitat, open space, and agricultural lands. The SSHCP will allow Sacramento County, the City of Rancho Cordova, the City of Galt, Sacramento County Water Agency, and the Southeast Connector Joint Powers Authority to receive Incidental Take Permits for Covered Species from USFWS and CDFW. The SSHCP also includes an Aquatic Resources Program to streamline permitting under the Clean Water Act Section 404 and 401. Land use authorities (Sacramento County, Galt, and Rancho Cordova) will be able to authorize incidental take of state and federally listed species and minimal impacts to aquatic features for projects implemented by third-party proponents.
As of October 2018, the SSHCP has been adopted by all partners. Additionally, the Central Valley RWQCB issued the programmatic Clean Water Act Section 401 Water Quality Certification for the SSHCP in April 2019, the USFWS issued the 50-year federal ESA Incidental Take Permit in June 2019, and the USACE issued the Programmatic General Permit and Letter of Permission in July 2019. Anticipated permits/approvals in fall 2019 include the USACE Streamlined Permit Strategy and the CDFW California ESA Incidental Take Permit.
ECORP has managed the regulatory permitting for several projects that served as “on-ramps” to the SSHCP permitting process and is currently managing the regulatory permits for projects pursuing coverage under the SSHCP. We have qualified biologists with experience in preparing the supporting documentation needed for SSHCP permit applications and in helping clients to meet the project design, avoidance, and minimization measures required by the SSHCP. ECORP can also assist with the land dedication process for land owners who are interested in dedicating land to the SSHCP to satisfy mitigation requirements.
If you have a project within the SSHCP Plan Area , please contact Taraneh Eman  at (916) 782-9100 to see how our permitting specialists can assist in your project planning and regulatory needs.
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Newly Retired, Ever Admired Roger Mason, Ph.D., RPA Director of Cultural Resources, Emeritus

Archaeologist, Principal Investigator, Author, Leader, Mentor.  These are a few of the things we think of when we think of Roger Mason.
36 Years Cultural Resources Management; 836 Projects, and a Million Proposals while at ECORP.
Roger.Mason _002_It is with mixed emotions that we are announcing the retirement of Dr. Roger Mason. Roger has been with ECORP for 15 years as the Director of Cultural Resources and has been professionally involved with cultural resources management in Southern California since 1983. His commitment and dedication to this company has played an important role in the growth and success of this firm. When asked for parting words or a favorite memory to share, Roger replied, ” Over the past 15 years I have enjoyed working on many interesting projects and solving problems with my ECORP friends and colleagues. Highlights have been editing and contributing to the Antelope Valley Archaeological Research Design for Caltrans and evaluating and completing mitigation for archaeological sites in the Canyon Hills development area (Lake Elsinore area) for Pardee Homes.”
Roger has authored hundreds of reports dealing with cultural resources surveys, evaluations, and mitigation programs in all southern California counties. He has extensive project experience with the cultural resources requirements of California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and Section 106 of the NHPA and has been the Principal Investigator for all tasks carried out under ECORP’s blanket purchase order with the County of San Bernardino Department of Public Works. Roger has been adept at formulating prehistoric contexts and research questions to be employed in evaluating whether prehistoric sites are eligible under NRHP Criterion D and CRHR Criterion 4. He also prepared numerous cultural resources sections for CEQA documents and was a consultant to the California Energy Commission and the California High Speed Rail Authority for preparation of cultural resources sections of environmental documents. In addition to the numerous technical and professional reports that he has prepared over the years, Roger has written published articles and monographs, presented papers, and provided public lectures. His most recent article as principal author is entitled Aztec Period Political and Economic Organization of Western Morelos, Mexico, accepted for publication in Ancient Mesoamerica.
When asked what his retirement plans are, he replied, “In retirement I will do research and write about southern California prehistory, as well as western Morelos, Mexico, where I did my dissertation field work so many years ago. I will also still be available to ECORP on an on-call basis.”
ECORP hosted a dinner party to honor and reinforce our appreciation for this esteemed employee and brilliant person. Although we will miss him, he has more than earned the right to spend more time marking items off his bucket list. Everyone at ECORP wishes Roger all the best for the future!
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It’s Time to Plan for California Tiger Salamander Surveys!

salamander 1As we enter our rainy season, now is the time to plan for qualified biologists to assess your project site for California tiger salamanders. These native salamanders are found in grasslands and woodlands in parts of central and coastal California. They breed in temporary pools and ponds during the rainy season, and larvae develop within pools until their legs and lungs are developed. As waters dry, they then disperse upland where adults spend most of their lives, returning to water to breed during winter and spring. California tiger salamanders are protected under the federal and state Endangered Species Acts (ESA and CESA) throughout their range. As such, survey protocols in potentially occupied habitat must be approved by regulatory agencies and conducted by qualified and permitted personnel.  A habitat assessment is often recommended as a first step to gain site-specific information prior to planning a survey.  Then, depending on the outcome of the habitat assessment, agencies may require a protocol-level survey, especially for sites that have potential breeding habitats with ponds or pools. Drift fence survey arrays need to be approved by the agencies and constructed by October 15 of a given survey year.
salamander 2
ECORP has numerous highly qualified biologists ready to undertake habitat assessments and surveys, if needed, on your project site.  In addition, our regulatory specialists have guided numerous project applicants through the ESA, CESA, and California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) processes, resulting in many successful projects throughout the range of the California tiger salamander. Before the rainy season gets started, now is the time to schedule habitat assessments and surveys!
To discuss your project in relation to potential California tiger salamander issues, please contact Eric Stitt or Peter Balfour at (916) 782-9100.
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Change is Good

Feel free to stop by and check out our new office and visit with staff!
Come Visit Us!
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Marin Meza and Thea Fuerstenberg Serve on the Board of WTS

Marin Meza, Senior Biologist/Project Manager, and Thea Fuerstenberg, Senior Archaeologist , are 2019 Board Members of the Women’s Transportation Seminar (WTS) Sacramento Chapter.
Marin is a continuing Board Member and is co-Chairing the fundraising position, which involves raising funds for the WTS Foundation and at WTS Sacramento events. Thea is co-Chairing the scholarships position, which involves coordination with local high schools and colleges/universities to post scholarship applications for female students studying in a transportation-related field (e.g., engineering and planning).
The objective of WTS is to promote the advancement of women in the transportation industry through programs, services, scholarships, and other activities. The Chapter has offered scholarships since 2005 and has supported young women studying transportation or related fields with over $100,000 in scholarships awarded. This past year, the Chapter awarded eleven female students with $22,000 collectively.
For more information, contact Marin Meza or Thea Fuerstenberg  in the Rocklin office at (916) 782-9100.
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