Next Submission Deadline: 5/29/2019
The Saw Mill Creek Pilot Wetland Mitigation Bank is a mechanism to provide compensatory mitigation through the sale of Credits to applicants in the waterfront permitting process.
Tidal wetland mitigation Credits are now available for sale from the City’s first mitigation bank. Credits from the Saw Mill Creek Pilot Wetland Mitigation Bank are available exclusively for impact offsetting in portions of New York City’s five boroughs through this RFP. Parties interested in acquiring Credits from the mitigation bank should confirm directly with federal and state regulators that Credits and Credit quantities from the Saw Mill Creek Pilot Wetland Mitigation Bank address specific project permit mitigation requirements.
Mitigation Bank Summary
Mitigation and Restoration Strategies for Habitat and Ecological Sustainability (MARSHES) is a vital initiative that is helping restore and protect New York City’s valuable wetlands while supporting investment in coastal infrastructure. As the first large scale project of the MARSHES initiative, New York City Economic Development Corporation is issuing this open Request for Proposals on behalf of The City of New York for the sale of compensatory mitigation tidal wetland Credits generated by the City’s first wetland mitigation bank.
Under federal regulations, compensatory mitigation when applied to tidal wetlands means the restoration (re-establishment or rehabilitation), establishment, enhancement, and/or, in certain circumstances, preservation of aquatic resources for the purposes of offsetting unavoidable adverse impacts which remain after all appropriate and practicable avoidance and minimization has been achieved. The Saw Mill Creek Pilot facilitates both the improvement and protection of critical coastal resources, and the establishment of a predictable, efficient, and environmentally responsible process to serve the wetland mitigation needs in New York City.
The price for Credits will be determined through a competitive process via the RFP. The competitive offer must be greater than the Reserve Price, which is currently $1,500,000.00 per one (1) Credit. The Reserve Price is subject to change.
For information regarding number of available Credits for sale from the Saw Mill Creek Pilot Wetland Mitigation Bank visit the US Army Corps of Engineers' Regulatory In-lieu Fee and Bank Information Tracking System (ribits.usace.army.mil).
RFP Submission Deadlines
- 4:00 pm, Wednesday, May 29, 2019
- 4:00 pm, Wednesday, August 28, 2019
- 4:00 pm, Wednesday, December 4, 2019
- 4:00 pm, Wednesday, February 26, 2020
- New York City Economic Development Corporation
- Mayor’s Office
- Department of Parks and Recreation
- Department of Environmental Protection
- Department of City Planning
- March 2019: US Army Corps of Engineers determined the Saw Mill Creek Pilot Wetland Mitigation Bank successfully met the terms required for the Hydrology Credit release
- January 2018: US Army Corps of Engineers determined the Saw Mill Creek Pilot Wetland Mitigation Bank successfully met the terms required for the initial Credit release
- April 2017: The Saw Mill Creek Pilot Wetland Mitigation Bank received its Army Corps of Engineers Section 10 and Section 404 permits
- Spring 2016: The Mitigation Banking Instrument was approved by New York State Department of State and Environmental Conservation and by the Army Corps of Engineers
- September 2015: The Saw Mill Creek Pilot Wetland Mitigation Bank received NYS Department of Environmental Conservation Tidal Wetlands, Excavation and Fill, Water Quality Certificate, and Freshwater Wetlands permits
About Mitigation Banking
- The Saw Mill Creek Pilot will leverage public and private economic investment to fund healthier wetlands
- Nationally, over 960,000 acres have been restored and preserved through 1,000 similar projects in 28 states
- The National Research Council, the Society of Wetland Scientists, and the Environmental Law Institute endorse this method as the most successful approach to offset unavoidable wetlands losses
- The US Army Corps of Engineers and the US Environmental Protection Agency prioritize this approach over existing methods
Frequently Asked Questions
The following are responses to specific and general questions about the Saw Mill Creek Wetland Mitigation Bank Credit Sale Request for Proposals:
- Where do I determine the number or fraction of Credit(s) my permit requires? Respondents should consult directly with permitting agencies to determine the Credit(s) your project needs from the Saw Mill Creek Pilot Wetland Mitigation Bank.
- My project is not in the Primary Service Area, can I still acquire and use Credits as compensatory mitigation for my permitted project? Only permitted projects in the Primary and Secondary Service area are eligible to use Credits as compensatory mitigation for their project. Whether your project is in the Primary or the Secondary Service Area, you should consult NYS DEC and/or USACE regarding using Credits from the Saw Mill Creek Pilot Wetland Mitigation Bank to satisfy your compensatory mitigation obligations.
- Is the bank only open to developers, or are public entities also eligible to acquire Credits? Public entities are eligible to purchase Credit(s) provided those entities do not acquire Credits with funds derived from the City of New York’s fiscal budget. See section 1.5 (“Eligible Respondents”) of the RFP.
- Can Credits from the Saw Mill Creek Pilot Wetland Mitigation Bank be used to satisfy compensatory mitigation requirements outside of NYC? No.
- On submittal of a proposal, how long will the review period be, and upon selection, how long will it take to be awarded? NYCEDC will review all Responses received by each Submission Deadline. NYCEDC reserves the right to clarify proposals and to request additional information at its discretion. The timing of the selection may differ depending upon the degree to which further information on individual Responses must be obtained or due to other factors that NYCEDC may consider pertinent. The selection of the Respondent is contingent on the execution of the Contract as described in the RFP. In addition, all approvals for transfer of the Mitigation Credits must be obtained, including approval by the NYCEDC Board of Directors and other entities, as applicable. It is anticipated that pursuant to the terms of the Contract, Seller shall then have 30 days after all approvals have been obtained to transfer the Credits. Such transfer shall occur after the Credit Purchaser has made payment to NYCEDC or another entity as directed by the City.
- Once a Credit or fraction of a Credit is acquired, can it be resold? Pursuant to the terms of the Contract that will be entered into for the acquisition of the Credits, the resale or transfer of Credits for other unrelated permit requirements, as compensation for other resources, or to satisfy the requirements of any other program other than for the project(s) or intended uses specifically presented to NYCEDC prior to execution of any Contract will be prohibited unless approved in advance by NYCEDC and the City.
- Can additional credits be purchased for use against future unidentified projects? Is that acceptable to EDC under the terms of the RFP? Respondents can purchase Credits for future projects, but should provide as much information as possible about the likely project and/or intended use(s) for the Credits. Responses will be evaluated and potentially selected based on certain criteria which may include the proposed project(s) or intended Credit use. In addition, in order to acquire the Credits, the Purchaser will need to execute a Contract which will include a Project Submission Completion Date by which the Purchaser will need to submit confirmation of the Mitigation Obligation and USACE and/or NYSDEC permits for the project. The Contract will also include a Project Commencement Date by which the Purchaser must commence improvements on the Property.
- Is submittal of a conceptual design acceptable for the project description? Respondents are encouraged to provide as much information as possible regarding the proposed project. While conceptual design information is acceptable, if possible, Respondents should submit information regarding guidance from government agencies about the likelihood that purchasing Credits would fulfill the mitigation requirement, and the amount of mitigation required.
- Do the following requirements all need to be fulfilled prior to application submittal: NYSDEC and/or USACE confirmation the conceptual development plans are permittable, NYSDEC and/or USACE mitigation requirement is established and the credits available through the mitigation bank would be accepted by the NYSDEC and/or USACE? Respondents may submit a Response prior to the conditions above being fulfilled. However, Respondents should include as much information as possible in their Response regarding the status of relevant discussions with government entities, including copies of correspondence with such entities. Responses should provide as much evidence as possible that the project is permittable and the acquired Credits would meet mitigation requirements. Respondents should confirm directly with federal and state regulators that Credits and Credit quantities from the Saw Mill Creek Pilot Wetland Mitigation Bank address Respondents’ specific project permit mitigation requirements. All due diligence is the responsibility of the Respondent and Respondents are urged to satisfy themselves with respect to the Site, Credits, and the permitting value of a Credit to a Respondent’s specific project that may require mitigation.
- What is the smallest amount of Credit that can be requested? Respondents may identify any fractional amount of credits desired so long as the competitive offer to purchase is in excess of the Reserve Price. Credits from the bank represent wetland rehabilitation, re-establishment, and enhancement. Depending on Respondents’ specific need, fractions of Credits are available to offset impacts less than one acre.
- When are additional Credits, beyond the 1.684 now available, expected to be made available? It is anticipated that additional Credits will be available over the duration of the restoration and monitoring of the Saw Mill Creek Pilot, which is anticipated to be approximately six years. The extent of restoration and monitoring will determine the actual release schedule over this period. The Saw Mill Creek Pilot is expected to achieve its next milestone by fall 2018, although regulatory agencies will make the final determination regarding Credit release and therefore availability. Respondents should continue to monitor the NYCEDC Saw Mill Creek project webpage and the USACE Regulatory In-lieu Fee and Bank Information Tracking System (“RIBITS”) website for the latest information about Credit release and availability.
- Can an RFP Respondent apply for the amount of Credits available now, although it may be insufficient to meet the known mitigation need, and then reapply for the remaining needed Credits at the time they are available? Respondents may apply for any amount of Credits they may require. If the total amount of Credits Respondents anticipate requiring exceeds the currently available Credits per the NYCEDC Saw Mill Creek project webpage and the USACE Regulatory In-lieu Fee and Bank Information Tracking System (“RIBITS”) website, Respondents are encouraged to specify the total amount of Credits they anticipate would be required for their proposed project in the description of their project. Respondents may then propose acquiring up to the amount of Credits available at the time of their response (even if only a portion of their total anticipated mitigation obligation). Respondents should describe their anticipated plan for meeting the total anticipated mitigation obligation required, and any conversations with regulators regarding their plan.
- Can only NYC government institutions purchase from this bank, or can private contractors purchase from it? Non-governmental and private purchasers are eligible to respond and purchase Credits. Purchasers may only be parties intending to acquire Credits with funds not derived from the fiscal budget of the City of New York. See section 1.5 (“Eligible Respondents”) for information.
- Is this a tidal credit only bank, or are you also selling wetland credits? The Saw Mill Creek Pilot provides off-site compensatory mitigation for unavoidable tidal wetland impacts to waters of the United States, including wetlands, occurring within the New York City municipal limits. Respondents are encouraged to discuss the utility of Credits for their proposed projects with applicable regulatory agencies.
- Will the first round RFP (May 30th) results, including the list of entities bidding and bid price, be available to the public? The total number of mitigation Credits currently available, reflecting any sales as well as increases due to Credit releases by regulators, is available on the NYCEDC Saw Mill Creek project webpage and on the USACE Regulatory In-lieu Fee and Bank Information Tracking System (“RIBITS”) website. The number of Credits will only reflect a sale after any selected Respondent has executed the Purchase and Sale Agreement, all approvals have been received, and the Credits have been transferred pursuant to the terms of the respective Purchase and Sale Agreement.