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Proposed Rule

Drawbridge Operation Regulations; Connection Slough, Stockton, CA

Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

Published Document

This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

Start Preamble

AGENCY:

Coast Guard, DHS.

ACTION:

Notice of proposed rulemaking.

SUMMARY:

The Coast Guard proposes to change the operating requirements of the Reclamation District Drawbridge across Connection Slough, between Mandeville and Bacon Islands, near Stockton, CA, by reducing the periods of time when the drawspan is required to open on signal for the passage of vessels and by increasing the advance notice periods. The bridge owner requests these changes in order to reduce the costs of operating the drawbridge. The proposed action would reduce the number of hours the bridge needs to be manned and, therefore, would reduce costs to the owner.

DATES:

Comments and related material must reach the Coast Guard on or before October 22, 2003.

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ADDRESSES:

You may mail comments and related material to Commander (oan), Eleventh Coast Guard District, Building 50-3, Coast Guard Island, Alameda, CA 94501-5100. The Bridge Section maintains the public docket for this rulemaking. Comments and material received from the public, as well as documents indicated in this preamble as being available in the docket, will become part of this docket and will be available for inspection or copying at Commander (oan), Eleventh Coast Guard District, Building 50-3, Coast Guard Island, Alameda, CA 94501-5100 between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

David H. Sulouff, Chief, Bridge Section, Eleventh Coast Guard District, telephone (510) 437-3516.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Request for Comments

We encourage you to participate in this rulemaking by submitting comments and related material. If you do so, please include your name and address, identify the docket number for this rulemaking [CGD11-03-005], indicate the specific section of this document to which each comment applies, and give the reason for each comment. Please submit all comments and related material in an unbound format, no larger than 81/2 by 11 inches, suitable for copying. If you would like to know they reached us, please enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard or envelope. We will consider all comments and material received during the comment period. We may change this proposed rule in view of them.

Public Meeting

We do not now plan to hold a public meeting. But you may submit a request for a meeting by writing to the Coast Guard Bridge Section at the address under ADDRESSES explaining why one would be beneficial. If we determine that one would aid this rulemaking, we will hold one at a time and place announced by a later notice in the Federal Register.

Background and Purpose

The bridge owner, Central California Redevelopment Company (CCRC Farms), has requested changing the dates and times for manning their Reclamation District drawbridge, crossing Connection Slough between Mandeville and Bacon Islands, near Stockton, CA. The reason for the proposal is to reduce operating costs of the bridge while continuing to meet the reasonable needs of vessel traffic.

The existing regulation, 33 CFR 117.150, requires the bridge, from May 1 through October 31, to open on signal between the hours of 6 a.m. and 10 p.m., and from November 1 through April 30, to open on signal between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. All other times the drawbridge must open on signal if notice is given at least 4 hours in advance. The drawbridge must open upon 1-hour notice for emergency vessel operation.

Discussion of Proposed Rule

The proposed changes are as follows: From May 15 through September 15 the bridge would open on signal between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., and it would open upon 12 hours notice between the hours of 5 p.m. and 9 a.m. From September 16 through May 14 the bridge would open upon 12 hours notice between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., and it would open upon 24 hours notice between the hours of 5 p.m. and 9 a.m. The bridge would continue to open upon 1-hour notice for emergency vessel operation. The above changes would lower the costs of operating the bridge for the bridge owner without significantly impacting waterway users.

Regulatory Evaluation

This proposed rule is not a “significant regulatory action” under section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866, Regulatory Planning and Review, and does not require an assessment of potential costs and benefits under section 6(a)(3) of that Order. The Office of Management and Budget has not reviewed it under that Order. It is not “significant” under the regulatory policies and procedures of the Department of Homeland Security.

We expect the economic impact of this proposed rule to be so minimal that a full Regulatory Evaluation under the regulatory policies and procedures of DHS is unnecessary. Vessel counts derived from drawbridge operating logs and land traffic counts were submitted by CCRC Farms in support of their request, showing little demand for bridge openings during the proposed periods of advance notice. The Coast Guard, through individual correspondence, also requested comments regarding the proposed changes from established waterway representatives and known operators. The Coast Guard did not receive any responses from these users of the waterway. The above counts and lack of response from waterway users show that there is little or no requirement for opening the drawbridge during the proposed periods of advance notice, therefore the impact of the proposed regulation is expected to be minimal.

Small Entities

Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601-612), we have considered whether this proposed rule would have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The term “small entities” comprises small businesses, not-for-profit organizations that are independently owned and operated and are not dominant in their fields, and governmental jurisdictions with populations of less than 50,000.

The Coast Guard certifies under 5 U.S.C. 605(b) that this proposed rule would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. No small entities were identified that would be affected by the proposed rule. Vessel traffic counts indicate the waterway users presently requiring operation of the drawspan would continue to receive the same level of service at the bridge. The proposal is to decrease unnecessary manning of the bridge during times and dates when the bridge historically has not been called for an opening.

If you think that your business, organization, or governmental jurisdiction qualifies as a small entity and that this rule would have a significant economic impact on it, please submit a comment (see ADDRESSES) explaining why you think it qualifies and how and to what degree this rule would economically affect it.

Collection of Information

This proposed rule would call for no new collection of information under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520.).

Federalism

A rule has implications for federalism under Executive Order 13132, Federalism, if it has a substantial direct effect on State or local governments and would either preempt State law or impose a substantial direct cost of compliance on them. We have analyzed this proposed rule under that Order and have determined that it does not have implications for federalism.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1531-1538) requires Federal agencies to assess the effects of their discretionary regulatory actions. In particular, the Act addresses actions that may result in the expenditure by a State, local, or tribal government, in the aggregate, or by the private sector of $100,000,000 or more in any one year. Start Printed Page 55022Though this proposed rule would not result in such an expenditure, we do discuss the effects of this rule elsewhere in this preamble.

Taking of Private Property

This proposed rule would not affect a taking of private property or otherwise have taking implications under Executive Order 12630, Governmental Actions and Interference with Constitutionally Protected Property Rights.

Civil Justice Reform

This proposed rule meets applicable standards in sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) of Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform, to minimize litigation, eliminate ambiguity, and reduce burden.

Protection of Children

We have analyzed this proposed rule under Executive Order 13045, Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks. This rule is not an economically significant rule and would not create an environmental risk to health or risk to safety that might disproportionately affect children.

Indian Tribal Governments

This proposed rule does not have tribal implications under Executive Order 13175, Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments, because it would not have a substantial direct effect on one or more Indian tribes, on the relationship between the Federal Government and Indian tribes, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities between the Federal Government and Indian tribes.

Energy Effects

We have analyzed this proposed rule under Executive Order 13211, Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use. We have determined that it is not a “significant energy action” under that order because it is not a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866 and is not likely to have a significant adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or use of energy. It has not been designated by the Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs as a significant energy action. Therefore, it does not require a Statement of Energy Effects under Executive Order 13211.

Environment

We have analyzed this proposed rule under Commandant Instruction M16475.lD, which guides the Coast Guard in complying with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) (42 U.S.C. 4321-4370f), and have concluded that there are no factors in this case that would limit the use of a categorical exclusion under section 2.B.2 of the Instruction. Therefore, this proposed rule is categorically excluded, under figure 2-1, paragraph (32)(e) of the Instruction, from further environmental documentation, since promulgation of drawbridge regulations has been determined not to have any effect on the environment.

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List of Subjects in 33 CFR Part 117

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Regulations

For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Coast Guard proposes to amend 33 CFR part 117 as follows:

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PART 117—DRAWBRIDGE OPERATION REGULATIONS

1. The authority citation for part 117 continues to read as follows:

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Authority: 33 U.S.C. 499; 33 CFR 1.05-1(g); Department of Homeland Security Delegation No. 0170.1; section 117.255 also issued under the authority of Pub. L. 102-587, 106 Stat. 5039.

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2. Revise § 117.150 to read as follows:

Connection Slough.

The draw of the Reclamation District No. 2027 bridge between Mandeville and Bacon Islands, mile 2.5 near Stockton, from May 15 through September 15, shall open on signal between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., and it shall open upon 12 hours notice between the hours of 5 p.m. and 9 a.m. From September 16 through May 14 the bridge shall open upon 12 hours notice between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., and it shall open upon 24 hours notice between the hours of 5 p.m. and 9 a.m. The bridge shall open on signal if at least one-hour notice is given for emergency operations or vessels in distress.

Start Signature

Dated: September 9, 2003.

J.M. Hass,

Captain, U.S. Coast Guard, Acting Commander, Eleventh Coast Guard District.

End Signature End Part End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 03-24016 Filed 9-18-03; 12:01 pm]

BILLING CODE 4910-15-P