Benefits to Landowners
For landowners wishing to develop their land, the HCP streamlines the local permitting process by eliminating the need to seek your own incidental take permit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and providing more certainty in the timeline and costs of mitigation for listed species. For landowners wishing to sell their land, the HCP will create a new market for the purchase of fee title or conservation easement from willing sellers who own land that support the covered species and their habitats.
Benefits to the Environment
The HCP would benefit the environment in Guam by protecting, enhancing, and restoring valuable natural resources and contributing to the recovery and persistence of threatened and endangered species populations. Whereas permitting on a project-by-project basis can result in piecemeal and disjointed land conservation efforts, the HCP would facilitate a coordinated, comprehensive approach to land conservation, ensuring that habitats are connected, monitored, and maintained for maximum benefit to at-risk species.
Benefits to Developers
For the Guam Department of Agriculture, developers, and landowners, the HCP will offer a streamlined permitting process for planned development, infrastructure, and maintenance activities. Under the HCP, applications for endangered species permits would occur in tandem with other building permits because the Habitat Plan allows the Guam Department of Agriculture to extend incidental take permit coverage to projects and activities under their jurisdiction.
Without the HCP, applicants could be required to negotiate directly with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to obtain endangered species permits—this can result in unpredictable timelines, complex permitting requirements, and the purchase and restoration of mitigation lands. Although this traditional process can still be followed, the HCP provides a less costly, more efficient process to request and receive endangered species permits.