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Rule

Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, Belle Chasse, LA

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:

Temporary final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Commander, Eighth Coast Guard District, has temporarily changed the regulation governing the operation of the State Route 23 vertical lift span drawbridge across the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway (Algiers Alternate Route), mile 3.8, at Belle Chasse, Louisiana. This temporary final rule is issued to facilitate movement of vehicular traffic for the New Orleans Open House 2006 Air Show, to be held at the U.S. Naval Air Station, Joint Reserve Base at Belle Chasse, Louisiana.

DATES:

This temporary final rule is effective from 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, October 21, 2006 until 7 p.m. on Sunday, October 22, 2006.

ADDRESSES:

Documents indicated in this preamble as being available referred to in this rule are available for inspection or copying at the office of the Eighth Coast Guard District, Bridge Administration Branch, 500 Poydras Street, New Orleans, Louisiana 70130-3310, between 7 a.m. and 3 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The telephone number is (504) 589-2965. The Eighth District Bridge Administration Branch maintains the public docket for this rulemaking.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

David Frank, Bridge Administration Branch, (504) 589-2965.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Good Cause for Not Publishing an NPRM

We did not publish a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) for this regulation. Under 5 U.S.C. 553(b) (B), the Coast Guard finds that good cause exists for not publishing an NPRM. The event is an annual event normally held on the last weekend in October. The regulation covering this annual event was subject to notice and comment, therefore further comments due to a one-time date change is unnecessary. A regulation already exists allowing the bridge to remain closed to navigation on that weekend; however, this year's event will be held on a different weekend. The closure will only impact the waterway users for 3.5 hours for two days. The bridge will open for vessels in distress during the closure period if necessary.

Good Cause for Making Rule Effective in Less Than 30 Days

Under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3), the Coast Guard finds that good cause exists for making this rule effective in less than 30 days after publication in the Federal Register. The closure of the bridge to marine traffic for this event has previously been the subject of public notice and comment; however, this year's event will be held one week earlier and requires a Temporary Rule to be issued to allow the bridge to remain closed to navigation. As the event will be held within a time frame of less than 30 days from the date of publication, it would be impracticable to wait 30 days to make the temporary rule effective.

Background and Purpose

The State Route 23 vertical lift span drawbridge across the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway (Algiers Alternate Route), mile 3.8, at Belle Chasse, Louisiana has a vertical clearance of 40 feet above mean high water in the closed-to-navigation position and 100 feet above mean high water in the open-to-navigation position. Navigation on the waterway consists primarily of tugs with tows, commercial fishing vessels, and occasional recreational craft.

The Department of the Navy requested a temporary rule changing the operation of the State Route 23 vertical lift span drawbridge. The change accommodates the additional volume of vehicular traffic that the New Orleans Open House Air Show generates each year. A large amount of the general public are expected to attend the New Orleans Open House Air Show on each day. The change allows for the expeditious dispersal of the heavy volume of vehicular traffic expected to depart the Naval Air Station, Joint Reserve Base following the event. This event has been held annually on the last weekend in October. This year, however, the event is being held on a different weekend.

Discussion of Rule

The Coast Guard is temporarily changing the regulation in 33 CFR part 117 without publishing a NPRM. The temporary change allows the bridge to remain closed for 3.5 hours per day for two days to facilitate a community activity and will minimally affect waterway users wishing to transit through the bridge on this date. This event is an annual event and waterway users have never expressed any concerns regarding the delays to facilitate this event.

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.

We expect the economic impact of this rule to be so minimal that a full Regulatory Evaluation under the regulatory policies and procedures of DHS is unnecessary.

This temporary rule will be only be for only 3.5 hours duration on two consecutive days and is therefore Start Printed Page 61898expected to have only a minor affect on the local economy.

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 temporary rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

This rule may affect the following entities, some of which may be small entities: the owners or operators of vessels intending to transit through the SR 23 bridge during the closure period. There is not expected to be a significant impact due to the short duration of the closure and the publicity given to the event. Before the effective period, we will issue maritime advisories widely available to users of the waterway.

Assistance for Small Entities

Under section 213(a) of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996 (Pub. L. 104-121), we want to assist small entities in understanding this rule so that they can better evaluate its effects on them and participate in the rulemaking process.

Small businesses may send comments on the actions of Federal employees who enforce, or otherwise determine compliance with, Federal regulations to the Small Business and Agriculture Regulatory Enforcement Ombudsman and the Regional Small Business Regulatory Fairness Boards. The Ombudsman evaluates these actions annually and rates each agency's responsiveness to small business. If you wish to comment on actions by employees of the Coast Guard, call 1-888-REG-FAIR (1-888-734-3247).

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 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 rule will not result in such an expenditure, we do discuss the effects of this rule elsewhere in the preamble.

Taking of Private Property

This rule will 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 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 cause 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, and Department of Homeland Security Management Directive 5100.1, 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 environmental documentation. Under figure 2-1, paragraph (32)(e), of the Instruction, an “Environmental Analysis Check List” and a “Categorical Exclusion Determination” are not required for this rule.

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List of Subjects in 33 CFR Part 117

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Bridges.

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For the reasons set out in the preamble, the Coast Guard amends

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PART 117—DRAWBRIDGE OPERATION REGULATIONS

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

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Authority: 33 U.S.C. 499; Department of Homeland Security Delegation No. 0170.1; 33 CFR 1.05-1(g); section 117.255 also issued Start Printed Page 61899under the authority of Pub. L. 102-587, 106 Stat. 5039.

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2. From 3:30 p.m. on October 21, 2006 until 7 p.m. on October 22, 2006, temporarily suspend § 117.451(b) and temporarily add new paragraph (f) to read as follows:

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Gulf Intracoastal Waterway.
* * * * *

(f) The draw of the SR 23 bridge, Algiers Alternate Route, mile 3.8 at Belle Chasse will open on signal; except that on Saturday, October 21, 2006 and Sunday, October 22, 2006, the draw need not open for the passage of vessel from 3:30 p.m. until 7 p.m. The draw shall open at any time for a vessel in distress.

Start Signature

Dated: October 3, 2006.

Ronald W. Branch,

Captain, U.S. Coast Guard, Commander, 8th Coast Guard Dist., Acting.

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[FR Doc. E6-17646 Filed 10-19-06; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4910-15-P