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Special Local Regulations for Marine Events; Pasquotank River, Elizabeth City, NC

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 Coast Guard is establishing special local regulations for the “Carolina Cup Regatta”, a powerboat race to be held on the waters of the Pasquotank River, Elizabeth City, North Carolina. These special local regulations are necessary to provide for the safety of life on navigable waters during the event. This action is intended to restrict vessel traffic in portions of the Pasquotank River adjacent to Elizabeth City, North Carolina during the powerboat races.

DATES:

This rule is effective from 7:30 a.m. on June 6, through 6:30 p.m., June 8, 2008.

ADDRESSES:

Documents indicated in this preamble as being available in the docket are part of docket USCG-2008-0414 and are available online at http://www.regulations.gov. They are also available for inspection or copying at two locations: the Docket Management Facility (M-30), U.S. Department of Transportation, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE., Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays, and the Fifth Coast Guard District, Office of Prevention, Room 416, 431 Crawford Street, Portsmouth, VA 23704 between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

If you have questions on this temporary rule, call Dennis Sens, Project Manager, Fifth Coast Guard District, Prevention Division, (757) 398-6204 or e-mail at Dennis.M.Sens@uscg.mil. If you have questions on viewing the docket, call Renee V. Wright, Program Manager, Docket Operations, telephone 202-366-9826.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Regulatory Information

The Coast Guard is issuing this temporary final rule without prior notice and opportunity to comment pursuant to authority under section 4(a) Start Printed Page 31361of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) (5 U.S.C. 553(b)). This provision authorizes an agency to issue a rule without prior notice and opportunity to comment when the agency for good cause finds that those procedures are “impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to the public interest.” Under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B), the Coast Guard finds that good cause exists for not publishing a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) with respect to this rule. Publishing an NPRM would be impracticable and contrary to public interest since immediate action is needed to minimize potential danger to the public during the event. The necessary information to determine whether the marine event poses a threat to persons and vessels was not provided with sufficient time to publish an NPRM. The danger posed by powerboat racing makes special local regulations necessary to provide for the safety of spectator craft and other vessels transiting the event area. For the safety concerns noted, it is in the public interest to have these regulations in effect during the event. The Coast Guard will issue broadcast notice to mariners to advise vessel operators of navigational restrictions. On scene Coast Guard and local law enforcement vessels will also provide actual notice to mariners.

Under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3) and for the same reasons, the Coast Guard finds that good cause exists for making this rule effective less than 30 days after publication in the Federal Register. Delaying the effective date would be contrary to public interest, because immediate action is needed to ensure the safety of the event participants, spectator craft and other vessels transiting the event area. However advance notification will be made to users of the Pasquotank River, via marine information broadcasts, Local Notice to Mariners, commercial radio stations and local area newspapers.

Background and Purpose

On June 6, 7, and 8, 2008, the Virginia Boat Racing Association will sponsor the “Carolina Cup Regatta”, on the waters of the Pasquotank River. The event will consist of approximately 75 inboard hydroplanes racing in counter clockwise heats around an oval race course. A fleet of spectator vessels is anticipated to gather nearby to view the competition. Due to the need for vessel control during the event, vessel traffic will be temporarily restricted to provide for the safety of event participants, spectators and transiting vessels.

Discussion of Rule

The Coast Guard is establishing a special local regulation on specified waters of the Pasquotank River, Elizabeth City, North Carolina. The special local regulations include all waters from shoreline to shoreline, bound to the west by the Elizabeth City Draw Bridge and on the east by a line originating at a point along the shoreline at latitude 36°17′54″ N, longitude 076°12′00″ W, thence southwesterly to latitude 36°17′35″ N, longitude 076°12′18″ W at Cottage Point. All coordinates reference Datum NAD 1983. The special local regulation will be in effect from 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., June 6 through June 8, 2008. The effect will be to restrict general navigation in the regulated area during the power boat races. Except for persons or vessels authorized by the Coast Guard Patrol Commander, no person or vessel may enter or remain in the regulated area during the enforcement period. The Patrol Commander will notify the public of specific enforcement times by marine band radio safety broadcast. These regulations are needed to control vessel traffic during the event to enhance the safety of event participants, spectators and transiting vessels.

Regulatory Analyses

We developed this rule after considering numerous statutes and executive orders related to rulemaking. Below we summarize our analyses based on 13 of these statutes or executive orders.

Regulatory Planning and Review

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).

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.

Although this regulation restricts vessel traffic from transiting a segment of the Pasquotank River during the event, the effect of this regulation will not be significant due to the limited duration that the regulated area will be in effect and the extensive advance notifications that will be made to the maritime community via marine information broadcasts, commercial radio stations and local area newspapers so mariners can adjust their plans accordingly.

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 affects the following entities, some of which may be small entities: The owners or operators of vessels intending to transit this section of the Pasquotank River during the event.

This rule would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities for the following reasons. This rule will be enforced for only a short period, from 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. on June 6, 7 and 8, 2008. The regulated area will apply to a segment of the Pasquotank River adjacent to Elizabeth City. Marine Traffic may be allowed to pass through the regulated area with the permission of the Coast Guard Patrol Commander. In the case where the Patrol Commander authorizes passage through the regulated area during the event, vessels will be required to proceed at the minimum speed necessary to maintain a safe course that minimizes wake near the race course. Before the enforcement period, we would issue maritime advisories so mariners can adjust their plans accordingly.

Assistance for Small Entities

Under section 213(a) of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996 (Pub. L. 104-121), we offer to assist small entities in understanding the 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 Start Printed Page 31362wish to comment on actions by employees of the Coast Guard, call 1-888-REG-FAIR (1-888-734-3247). 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 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 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 and Department of Homeland Security Management Directive 5100.1, which guide 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)(h), of the Instruction, from further environmental documentation. Special local regulations issued in conjunction with a regatta or marine event permit are specifically excluded from further analysis and documentation under those sections.

Under figure 2-1, paragraph (34)(h), of the Instruction, an environmental analysis checklist and a categorical exclusion determination are not required for this rule.

Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects in 33 CFR Part 100

End List of Subjects

Words of Issuance and Regulatory Text

For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Coast Guard amends 33 CFR part 100 as follows:

Start Part

PART 100—REGATTAS AND MARINE PARADES

End Part Start Amendment Part

1. The authority citation for part 100 continues to read as follows:

End Amendment Part Start Authority

Authority: 33 U.S.C. 1233.

End Authority Start Amendment Part

2. Add a temporary § 100.35-T05-0414 to read as follows:

End Amendment Part
Pasquotank River, Elizabeth City, NC.

(a) Regulated area. The regulated area is established for the waters of the Pasquotank River, adjacent to Elizabeth City, NC, from shoreline to shoreline, bound on the west by the Elizabeth City Draw Bridge and bound on the east by a line originating at a point along the shoreline at latitude 36°17′54″ N, longitude 076°12′00″ W, thence southwesterly to latitude 36°17′35″ N, longitude 076°12′18″ W., at Cottage Point. All coordinates reference Datum NAD 1983.

(b) Definitions: (1) Coast Guard Patrol Commander means a commissioned, warrant, or petty officer of the Coast Guard who has been designated by the Commander, Coast Guard Sector North Carolina.

(2) Official Patrol means any vessel assigned or approved by Commander, Coast Guard Sector North Carolina with a commissioned, warrant, or petty officer on board and displaying a Coast Guard ensign.

(3) Participant includes all vessels participating in the 2008 Carolina Cup Regatta power boat race under the auspices of the Marine Event Permit issued to the event sponsor and approved by Commander, Coast Guard Sector North Carolina.

(c) Special local regulations: (1) Except for event participants and persons or vessels authorized by the Coast Guard Patrol Commander, no Start Printed Page 31363person or vessel may enter or remain in the regulated area.

(2) The operator of any vessel in the regulated area must: (i) Stop the vessel immediately when directed to do so by any Official Patrol.

(ii) Proceed as directed by any Official Patrol.

(iii) When authorized to transit the regulated area, all vessels shall proceed at the minimum speed necessary to maintain a safe course that minimizes wake near the event area.

(d) Enforcement period. (1) This section will be enforced from 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. on June 6, 7, and 8, 2008 and if the event's daily activities should conclude prior to 6:30 p.m., enforcement of this regulation may be terminated for that day at the discretion of the Patrol Commander.

(2) The Coast Guard will publish a notice in the Fifth Coast Guard District Local Notice to Mariners and issue marine information broadcast on VHF-FM marine band radio announcing specific event dates and times.

Start Signature

Dated: May 21, 2008.

Fred M. Rosa, Jr.,

Rear Admiral, U.S. Coast Guard, Commander, Fifth Coast Guard District.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. E8-12154 Filed 5-30-08; 8:45 am]

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