Amendments to the Watts Bar Reservoir Land Management Plan

TVA proposes to change the land use allocations for six parcels of public land on Watts Bar Reservoir, affecting a total of 226 acres of TVA land in Rhea and Roane counties in east Tennessee.

In February 2009, TVA issued the Watts Bar Reservoir Land Management Plan (RLMP) for managing its public lands on the reservoir. In April 2012, TVA completed the Kingston Recovery Project Land Management Plan that allocated land use zones to 143.6 acres of reservoir property impacted by the ash spill; this plan supplemented the 2009 RLMP. Since the 2009 and 2012 planning efforts, TVA has identified six parcels on Watts Bar Reservoir for proposed land use allocation changes warranting an amendment to the 2009 RLMP. TVA intends to prepare an environmental assessment (EA) to consider the potential impacts of these changes. 

RLMPs guide land use approvals, private water use facility permitting and resource management decisions on TVA-managed public land. Any proposed development or activity on public land will be subject to TVA approval pending the completion of a site-specific environmental review to evaluate the potential environmental effects of the proposal. As necessary, TVA would impose any necessary mitigative measures as conditions of approval for the use of public lands to minimize adverse environmental effects.

Watts Bar Reservoir Land Management Plan

Proposed Allocation Changes

TVA-managed lands on Watts Bar Reservoir are within Loudon, Meigs, Rhea and Roane counties in east Tennessee and the proposed allocation changes are within Rhea and Roane counties. The environmental review will address the proposed modifications to the land use allocations for the following six parcels or portions of parcels in the table below. Click on the parcel number below for additional information.

Parcel
Acreage
Current Allocation
Proposed Allocation Change Description
89 35.0 Zone 4—Natural Resource Conservation Change 0.4-acre portion of the 35.0-acre parcel to Zone 7—Shoreline Access to reflect a previous property exchange where shoreline access rights were gained under TVA’s former Maintain and Gain policy that the TVA Board has since retracted.
144 172.3 Zone 3—Sensitive Resource Management Change 172.3 acres to Zone 2—Project Operations to support TVA’s proposed use for this and several adjacent parcels for a proposed power generation project.
153 40.6 Excluded from 2009 RLMP

Parcel 153 allocation was changed from Zone 7— Shoreline Access to “Unplanned” after the 2008 Kingston ash spill. TVA acquired the backlying residential property after the ash spill and the property has been returned to private residential ownership. TVA proposes to change the land use allocation back to Zone 7—Shoreline Access to reflect the backlying property ownership change to private residential with shoreline access rights.

197 36.8 Zone 7—Shoreline Access Change 10.2-acre portion of the 36.8-acre parcel to Zone 6—Developed Recreation to reflect a change in backlying property ownership from private residential to the State of Tennessee for public recreation purposes.
256 34.2 Zone 7—Shoreline Access Change 0.12-acre portion of the 34.2-acre parcel to Zone 4—Natural Resource Conservation to reflect a previous property exchange where shoreline access rights were extinguished under TVA’s former Maintain and Gain policy that the TVA Board has since retracted.
271 14.0 Zone 4—Natural Resource Conservation    Change 2.4-acre portion of the 14.0-acre parcel to Zone 6—Developed Recreation to support public recreation access on adjacent Parcel 270.

The proposed land use allocation changes would be consistent with the land use allocation ranges in the Comprehensive Valleywide Land Plan (CVLP). The CVLP allocates a certain percentage of land for each of the seven land use zones (with the exception of Zone 1, Non-TVA Shoreland) across the entire Valley.

Public Involvement

TVA held a scoping period in October and November 2017 to solicit public comments on the proposed changes to the land use allocations on these six parcels on Watts Bar Reservoir. During this period, TVA received input regarding the action’s potential to affect the environment or historic properties as well as other issues associated with the proposed allocation changes. This input is being considered as TVA’s prepares the draft EA, which TVA plans to release for public review in Spring 2018.  

Contacts

For more information about Reservoir Land Management Plans or the planning process contact:

Kelly R. Baxter
Senior Specialist, Reservoir Lands Planning
Tennessee Valley Authority
400 West Summit Hill Dr., WT 11D
Knoxville, Tenn. 37902
(865) 632-2444
krbaxter@tva.gov

For more information about the environmental review contact:

Matthew Higdon
Senior Specialist, National Environmental Policy Act
Tennessee Valley Authority
400 West Summit Hill Dr., WT 11D
Knoxville, Tenn. 37902
(865) 632-8051
mshigdon@tva.gov