Star Lake Concerned Citizens Group | P.O. Box 41, Dent MN 56528 | 218-251-1975

Federal Permit (Trust Land)

US Army Corps of Engineers

In November 2017 USACE requested additional info from develpoer and is waiting for a response. See copies of correspondence per Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request.
Comment period is closed. Decision is pending.

30-Day Public Comment Period:
October 28, 2016 - End Date:  November 28, 2016
Public Comments:  Document 1 and Document 2

Related Links
Link to Public Notice (2015-04407-RQM):  Click here
Link to Application:  Click here
Link to USACE/St Paul District - Regulatory:  Click here
If you have questions about the project, please contact Mr. Robert Q. Maroney (USACE) in the Brainerd office at (651) 290-5766 or by email at: [email protected]



This application, submitted to the US Army Corps of Engineers, is for a fill permit pertaining to wetlands on the tribal trust land. We encourage you to view the entire Public Notice, however below are some key bits of information:

  • Description:  The applicant proposes to discharge fill material into 8.41 acres of wetlands adjacent to Star Lake for the purpose of constructing a commercial development that would include a gaming facility and attendant features.  The proposed project would also include the temporary discharge of dredged and fill material into 1.01 acres to facilitate construction activities.

  • Mitigation:  To compensate for the permanent impacts to 8.41 acres of wetlands, the applicant proposed to purchase a total of 14.8 wetland credits from private wetland banks (note: the replacement wetlands are not in Otter Tail County).  To compensate for the temporary impacts to 1.01 acres of wetlands (during construction), the applicant proposed to restore the wetlands to pre-project conditions.

  • Public Interest Review (#9 in the Public Notice):  The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impact, including cumulative impacts, of the proposed activity on the public interest.  ... All factors which may be relevant to the proposal will be considered, including the cumulative effects.  Among those are conservation, economics, aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, cultural values, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, floodplain values, land use, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food and fiber production and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people.

    The Corps of Engineers is soliciting comments ... to determine whether to issue, modify, condition, or deny a permit for this proposal.  To make this decision, comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects, and the other public interest factors listed above.  ... Comments are also used to ... determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity.

The public comment period ended November 28, 2016. Thank you to everyone who took the time to submit comments.

Feb 1, 2017:  We wanted to share with you some of the comments that were submitted to the US Army Corps of Engineers on this particular permit. Below are two PDF documents containing copies of several well written letters submitted from various agencies, associations and individuals.  We encourage you to take a look at these letters to see the concerns they identified:

  • Public Comments - Document 1 (36 page PDF document)
  • Public Comments - Document 2 (66 page PDF document)

Below is a description of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Permitting Process. We will continue to update you as more information becomes available.

Federal Permit History


U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Permitting Process Information

The Permit Process consists of a number of steps involving the applicant, the Corps of Engineers, public and/or private rganizations, and Federal, state and/or local agencies. General information related to the permitting process is outlined below.

Processing Steps
The basic form of authorization used by Corps districts is the standard permit. Processing such permits involves evaluation of individual, project specific applications in what can be considered three steps: pre-application consultation (for major projects), project review, and decision-making.

The following is a general description of the step-by-step procedure the Corps uses to evaluate a typical standard permit application:

  1. A pre-application consultation is recommended.
  2. The applicant submits ENG Form 4345 and plans through website or to the appropriate Corps regulatory office.
  3. The Corps receives the application and assigns it an identification number.
  4. The Corps notifies the applicant if additional information is required to make the application complete.
  5. A public notice is issued within 15 days of receipt of a complete application, to solicit comments from the public, adjacent property owners, interested groups and individuals, local agencies, state agencies, and Federal agencies.
  6. The public notice comment period is 15 to 30 days, depending upon nature of activity.
  7. The Corps provides the applicant an opportunity to respond to comments received in response to the public notice.
  8. The Corps may ask the applicant to provide additional information to assess environmental impacts or resolve public interest concerns. The Corps may also ask the applicant to modify the project to reduce environmental impacts. <-- We are here; public comment period ended Nov 28, 2016; Corps requested additional information on 3/24/17 and again in November 2017 and is waiting on response from applicant.
  9. The Corps considers all comments and the applicant’s responses to those comments, including any proposed modifications of the project. The Corps may discuss project modifications with state and Federal agencies and other interested parties.
  10. A public hearing is held, if necessary.
  11. The Corps conducts a public interest review evaluation and, if necessary, a section 404(b)(1) guidelines evaluation.
  12. The Corps makes a decision on the permit application and explains its decision in a decision document. This decision document may include an environmental assessment or environmental impact statement, a statement of findings or record of decision, a Section 404(b)(1) guidelines evaluation (if necessary), and a public interest review evaluation.
  13. If the Corps decides to issue the permit, a copy of the permit is sent to the applicant for his or her signature. If the applicant signs the permit, he or she agrees to the terms and conditions of the permit. If the permit is denied, the Corps will explain to the applicant why the permit was denied.
  14. If the applicant refuses to sign the permit because he or she does not agree with the conditions in the permit, or if the permit is denied, the applicant can request an administrative appeal of the permit decision.

 Link to USACE source document.