Coast Guard, DHS.
Notice of proposed rulemaking.
The Coast Guard proposes to temporarily change the drawbridge operating regulations governing the operation of the General Edwards SR1A Bridge, at mile 1.7, across the Saugus River between Lynn and Revere, Massachusetts. This change to the drawbridge operation regulations would allow the bridge to remain in the closed position from November 1, 2005 through April 30, 2006. This action is necessary to facilitate structural maintenance at the bridge.
Comments must reach the Coast Guard on or before October 14, 2005.
You may mail comments to Commander (obr), First Coast Guard District Bridge Branch, 408 Atlantic Avenue, Boston, Massachusetts, 02110, or deliver them to the same address between 7 a.m. and 3 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The telephone number is (617) 223-8364. The First Coast Guard District, Bridge Branch, 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 the First Coast Guard District, Bridge Branch, 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.Start Further Info
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Mr. John McDonald, Project Officer, First Coast Guard District, (617) 223-8364.End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information
The Coast Guard is requesting that interested parties provide comments within shortened comment period of 15 days instead of standard 30 days for this notice of proposed rulemaking. In addition, the Coast Guard plans on making this rule effective less than 30 days after publication in the Federal Register.
The Coast Guard believes a shortened comment period is necessary and reasonable because the bridge rehabilitation construction scheduled to begin on November 1, 2005, is necessary, vital, work that must be performed as soon as possible in order to assure continuous safe and reliable operation of the SR1A Bridge.
Any delay in making this final rule effective by allowing comments for more than 15 days would not be in the best interest of public safety and the marine interests that use the Saugus River because delaying the effective date of this rulemaking would also require the rehabilitation construction work to continue beyond the proposed April 30, 2005, end date. This would result in the bridge closure continuing into May when recreational vessel traffic increases.
There were 7 bridge openings in November 2004, and no openings December through March. The few bridge openings that were requested in November were for recreational vessels that most likely could have passed under the draw at low tide without requiring a bridge opening.
As a result of the above information the Coast Guard believes that the best time period to perform this vital work and minimize the impacts on marine users is November through April.
Request for Comments
We encourage you to participate in this rulemaking by submitting comments or related material. If you do so, please include your name and address, identify the docket number for this rulemaking (CGD01-05-074), 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 if 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.
We do not now plan to hold a public meeting. But you may submit a request for a meeting by writing to the First Coast Guard District, Bridge Branch, 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. Start Printed Page 56879
Background and Purpose
The General Edwards SR1A Bridge at mile 1.7, across the Saugus River, has a vertical clearance of 27 feet at mean high water and 36 feet at mean low water. The existing regulations at 33 CFR 117.618 require the draw to open on signal, except that, from April 1 through November 30, midnight to 8 a.m. an eight-hour notice is required. From December 1 through March 31, an eight-hour notice is required at all times for bridge openings.
The bridge owner, the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR), asked the Coast Guard to temporarily change the drawbridge operation regulations to allow the bridge to remain in the closed position from November 1, 2005 through April 30, 2006, to facilitate structural rehabilitation construction at the bridge.
Discussion of Proposed Rule
This proposed change would suspend the existing drawbridge operation regulations, listed at 33 CFR § 117.618(b), and add a new temporary paragraph (d) to allow the bridge to remain in the closed position from November 1, 2005 through April 30, 2006.
The Coast Guard believes this proposed rule is reasonable because bridge openings are rarely requested during the time period the SR1A Bridge will be closed for these repairs and the fact that this work is vital, necessary, and must be performed in order to assure the continued safe and reliable operation of the bridge.
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 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 (DHS).
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.
This conclusion is based on the fact that the bridge rarely opens during the November through April time period.
Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601-612), we 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 section 5 U.S.C. 605(b), that this proposed rule would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.
This conclusion is based on the fact that bridge openings are rarely requested during the November through April time period.
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.
Assistance for Small Entities
Under section 213(a) of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-121), we want to assist small entities in understanding this proposed rule so that they can better evaluate its effects on them and participate in the rulemaking. If the rule would affect your small business, organization, or governmental jurisdiction and you have questions concerning its provisions or options for compliance, please contact us in writing at, Commander (obr), First Coast Guard District, Bridge Branch, 408 Atlantic Avenue, Boston, MA. 02110-3350. The telephone number is (617) 223-8364. The Coast Guard will not retaliate against small entities that question or complain about this rule or any policy or action of the Coast Guard.
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.).
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. Though 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 effect a taking of private property or otherwise have taking implications under E.O. 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 may disproportionately affect children.
Indian Tribal Governments
This 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.
We have analyzed this 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. The Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs Start Printed Page 56880has not designated it as a significant energy action. Therefore, it does not require a Statement of Energy Effects under Executive Order 13211.
The National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (NTTAA) (15 U.S.C. 272 note) directs agencies to use voluntary consensus standards in their regulatory activities unless the agency provides Congress, through the Office of Management and Budget, with an explanation of why using these standards would be inconsistent with applicable law or otherwise impractical. Voluntary consensus standards are technical standards (e.g., specifications of materials, performance, design, or operation; test methods; sampling procedures; and related management systems practices) that are developed or adopted by voluntary consensus standards bodies. This proposed rule does not use technical standards. Therefore, we did not consider the use of voluntary consensus standards.
We have analyzed this proposed rule under Commandant Instruction M16475.1D, 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 rule is categorically excluded, under figure 2-1, paragraph (32)(e), of the Instruction, from further environment documentation because it has been determined that the promulgation of operating regulations or procedures for drawbridges are categorically excluded.Start List of Subjects
List of Subjects in 33 CFR Part 117
For the reasons set out in the preamble, the Coast Guard proposes to amend 33 CFR part 117 as follows:Start Part
PART 117—DRAWBRIDGE OPERATION REGULATIONS
1. The authority citation for part 117 continues to read as follows:
2. From November 1, 2005 through April 30, 2006, § 117.618(b) is suspended and a new paragraph (d) is added to read as follows:
(d) The draw of the General Edwards SR1A Bridge at mile 1.7, need not open for the passage of vessel traffic from November 1, 2005 through April 30, 2006.
Dated: September 18, 2005.
David P. Pekoske,
Rear Admiral, U.S. Coast Guard, Commander, First Coast Guard District.
[FR Doc. 05-19583 Filed 9-27-05; 12:13 pm]
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