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Rule

Security Zone; Chesapeake Bay, Between Sandy Point and Kent Island, MD

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Coast Guard, DHS.

ACTION:

Temporary final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Coast Guard is establishing a temporary security zone on the waters of the Chesapeake Bay. This action is necessary to provide for the security of a large number of participants during the 2006 Bay Bridge Walk across the William P. Lane, Jr. Memorial Bridge between Sandy Point and Kent Island, Maryland. The security zone will allow for control of a designated area of the Chesapeake Bay and safeguard the public at large.

DATES:

This rule is effective from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. local time on May 7, 2006.

ADDRESSES:

Comments and material received from the public, as well as documents indicated in this preamble as being available in the docket, are part of docket CGD05-06-003 and are available for inspection or copying at Coast Guard Sector Baltimore, Waterways Management Division, between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Mr. Ronald Houck, at Coast Guard Sector Baltimore, Waterways Management Division, at telephone number (410) 576-2674 or (410) 576-2693.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Regulatory Information

On February 27, 2006, we published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) entitled “Security Zone; Chesapeake Bay, between Sandy Point and Kent Island, MD” in the Federal Register (71 FR 9744). We received no letters commenting on the proposed rule. No public meeting was requested, and none was held.

Background and Purpose

The William P. Lane Jr. Memorial Bridge (Chesapeake Bay Bridge) near Annapolis, Maryland crosses the Chesapeake Bay as part of highway US-50/US-301 and has been the site of a Bay Bridge Walk almost every year since 1975. The 4.5-mile walk, from Kent Island on the eastern shore to Sandy Point on the western shore of Maryland, attracts approximately 40,000 to 60,000 people. In 2005, the Bay Bridge Walk was cancelled while the Maryland Transportation Authority reevaluated the practice of holding the event annually. During the event, the eastbound span is closed to traffic for use by the walkers, and the westbound three-lane span has two-way vehicular traffic that is controlled by overhead lane control signals. The 2006 Bay Bridge Walk will be held on Sunday, May 7, 2006, but may be canceled in the event of rain, high winds or extreme temperatures. If the event is canceled, it will not be rescheduled this year. This year, the Bay Bridge Walk is being held on the same date, during the same times, and at the same general location as the highly-publicized, internationally-held Volvo Ocean Race 2005-2006 Leg 6 Restart event. The Coast Guard anticipates a large recreational boating fleet during this event. Operators should expect significant vessel congestion along their planned route.

In this particular rulemaking, to take steps to prevent the catastrophic impact that a terrorist attack against a large number of participants and the public at large during the 2006 Bay Bridge Walk would have on the public interest, the Coast Guard is establishing a security zone upon all waters of the Chesapeake Bay, from the surface to the bottom, within 250 yards north of the north (westbound) span of the William P. Lane Jr. Memorial Bridge, and 250 yards south of the south (eastbound) span of the William P. Lane Jr. Memorial Bridge, from the western shore at Sandy Point to the eastern shore at Kent Island, Maryland.

The rule will assist the Coast Guard in preventing vessels or persons from engaging in terrorist actions against the public at large by providing a buffer around the walkers while they are participating in the Bay Bridge Walk. The rule will impact the movement of all vessels operating in the specified areas of the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries. Interference with normal port operations will be kept to the minimum considered necessary to ensure the safety of life, property, and the surrounding area and communities, on the navigable waters immediately before, during, and after the scheduled event.

Discussion of Comments and Changes

The Coast Guard received no comments on the proposed rule during the comment period published in the NPRM. No public meeting was requested and none was held. As a result, no change to the proposed regulatory-text was made.

Regulatory Evaluation

This 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 (DHS).

The Coast Guard received no comments on the proposed rule during the comment period published in the NPRM. As a result, no change to the proposed regulatory text was made.

Small Entities

Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601-612), we have considered whether this 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 rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. This rule will affect the following entities, some of which might be small entities: The owners or operators of vessels intending to transit or anchor in a portion of the Chesapeake Bay, within 250 yards north of the north (westbound) span of the William P. Lane Jr. Memorial Bridge, and 250 yards south of the south (eastbound) span of the William P. Lane Jr. Memorial Bridge, from the western shore at Sandy Point to the eastern shore at Kent Island, Maryland from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. on May 7, 2006.

This security zone will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities for the following reasons. This rule will be in effect for approximately ten hours. Although the security zone will apply to the entire width of the Chesapeake Bay, smaller vessels not constrained by their draft, which are more likely to be small entities, may request permission from the Captain of the Port Baltimore, Maryland to enter the zone. Additionally, before the effective period, the Coast Guard will issue maritime advisories widely available to users of the river to allow mariners to make alternative plans for transiting the affected areas. Because the zone is of limited size, it is expected that there will be minimal disruption to the maritime community.

Assistance for Small Entities

Under section 213(a) of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996 (Pub. L. 104-121), we offered to assist small entities in understanding the rule so that they could better evaluate its effects on them and participate in the rulemaking process. However, we received no requests for assistance from any small entities.

Collection of Information

This rule calls 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 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 Start Printed Page 20015that 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 rule will not result in such an expenditure, we do discuss the effects of this rule elsewhere in this preamble.

Taking of Private Property

This rule will not effect 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 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 rule under Executive Order 13045, Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks. This rule is not an economically significant rule and does 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 does 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 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 has not designated it as a significant energy action. Therefore, it does not require a Statement of Energy Effects under Executive Order 13211.

Technical Standards

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 rule does not use technical standards. Therefore, we did not consider the use of voluntary consensus standards.

Environment

We have analyzed this 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 rule is categorically excluded, under figure 2-1, paragraph (34)(g.), of the Instruction, from further environmental documentation. This regulation establishes a security zone. A final “Environmental Analysis Check List” and a final “Categorical Exclusion Determination” are available in the docket where indicated under ADDRESSES.

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List of Subjects in 33 CFR Part 165

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For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Coast Guard amends

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PART 165—REGULATED NAVIGATION AREAS AND LIMITED ACCESS AREAS

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1. The authority citation for part 165 continues to read as follows:

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Authority: 33 U.S.C. 1226, 1231; 46 U.S.C. Chapter 701; 50 U.S.C. 191, 195; 33 CFR 1.05-1(g), 6.04-1, 6.04-6, and 160.5; Pub. L. 107-295, 116 Stat. 2064; Department of Homeland Security Delegation No. 0170.1.

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2. Add § 165.T05-003 to read as follows:

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Security Zone; Chesapeake Bay, between Sandy Point and Kent Island, MD.

(a) Definitions. (1) For purposes of this section, Captain of the Port, Baltimore, Maryland means the Commander, Coast Guard Sector Baltimore, Maryland or any Coast Guard commissioned, warrant, or petty officer who has been authorized by the Captain of the Port, Baltimore, Maryland to act on his behalf.

(b) Location. The following area is a security zone: All waters of the Chesapeake Bay, from the surface to the bottom, within 250 yards north of the north (westbound) span of the William P. Lane Jr. Memorial Bridge, and 250 yards south of the south (eastbound) span of the William P. Lane Jr. Memorial Bridge, from the western shore at Sandy Point to the eastern shore at Kent Island, Maryland.

(c) Regulations. (1) All persons are required to comply with the general regulations governing security zones found in § 165.33 of this part.

(2) Entry into or remaining in this zone is prohibited unless authorized by the Coast Guard Captain of the Port, Baltimore, Maryland.

(3) Persons or vessels requiring entry into or passage through the security zone must first request authorization from the Captain of the Port, Baltimore to seek permission to transit the area. The Captain of the Port, Baltimore, Maryland can be contacted at telephone number (410) 576-2693. The Coast Guard vessels enforcing this section can be contacted on VHF Marine Band Radio, VHF channel 16 (156.8 MHz). Upon being hailed by a U.S. Coast Guard vessel by siren, radio, flashing light, or other means, the operator of a vessel shall proceed as directed. If permission is granted, all persons and vessels must comply with the instructions of the Captain of the Port, Baltimore, Maryland and proceed at the minimum speed necessary to maintain a safe course while within the zone.

(4) Enforcement. The U.S. Coast Guard may be assisted in the patrol and enforcement of the zone by Federal, State, and local agencies.

(d) Effective period. This section will be effective from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. local time on May 7, 2006.

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Dated: April 7, 2006.

Curtis A. Springer,

Captain, U.S. Coast Guard, Captain of the Port, Baltimore, Maryland.

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[FR Doc. 06-3714 Filed 4-18-06; 8:45 am]

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