It is proposed that the hours of availability at Jonesville and Columbia Locks on the Ouachita and Black Rivers will be reduced from the current schedule of 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, 365 days per year to 18 hours per day, separated into two 9 hour periods, 5 a.m. to 2 p.m., and 5 p.m. to 2 a.m., 7 days per week, 365 days per year. It is also proposed that the hours of availability at Felsenthal and H.K. Thatcher Locks on the Ouachita and Black Rivers will be reduced from the current schedule of 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, 365 days per year to 16 hours per day, separated into two 8 hour periods, 5 a.m. to 1 p.m., and 5 p.m. to 1 a.m., 7 days per week, 365 days per year. Constrained funding and fiscal deficit have led to reduced operation and maintenance funding on the Ouachita/Black Waterway. The intended effect is to provide lock availability that matches existing lock usage and to help ensure that minimal dredging needs will be met. Pool levels will not be affected by change of operating hours.
Proposed implementation date is July 29, 2012.
Submit written comments to Mr. James V. Ross, Chief, Operations Division, Vicksburg District, US Army Corps of Engineers, 4155 Clay Street, Vicksburg, MS 39183, or deliver them to Mr. Ross between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday at the address above. Comments received and other materials relevant to the proposed reduction in hours of lock availability will be posted on the Vicksburg District Web site, http://www.mvk.usace.army.mil/.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Mr. Michael Kidby at the Corps of Engineers Headquarters in Washington, DC, by phone at 202-761-0250.
The legal authority for the regulation governing the use, administration, and navigation of the Ouachita and Black Rivers and Locks is Section 4 of the River and Harbor Act of August 18, 1894 (28 Stat. 362), as amended, which is codified at 33 U.S.C. Section 1. This statute requires the Secretary of the Army to “prescribe such regulations for the use, administration, and navigation of the navigable waters of the United States” as the Secretary determines may be required by public necessity. Reference 33 CFR Part 207.249, Ouachita and Black Rivers, Ark. and La., Mile 0.0 to Mile 338.0 (Camden, Ark.) above the mouth of the Black River; the Red River, La., Mile 6.7 (Junction of Red, Atchafalaya and Old Rivers) to Mile 276.0 (Shreveport, La.); use, administration, and navigation.
Brenda S. Bowen,
Army Federal Register Liaison Officer.
[FR Doc. 2012-12750 Filed 5-24-12; 8:45 am]
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