Coast Guard, DHS.
Notice of proposed rulemaking.
The Coast Guard proposes to modify the operating schedule that governs the U.S. 70 (Alfred C. Cunningham) Bridge across the Trent River, mile 0.0, in New Bern, North Carolina. This proposed modification will allow the drawbridge to be maintained in the closed position during peak traffic hours and provide daily scheduled openings to meet the reasonable needs of navigation.
Comments and related material must reach the Coast Guard on or before June 12, 2020.
You may submit comments identified by docket number USCG 2020-0027 using Federal eRulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov.
See the “Public Participation and Request for Comments” portion of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section below for instructions on submitting comments.
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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
If you have questions on this proposed rule, call or email Mr. Martin A. Bridges, Fifth Coast Guard District (dpb), at (757) 398-6422, email Martin.A.Bridges@uscg.mil.
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I. Table of Abbreviations
CFR Code of Federal Regulations
DHS Department of Homeland Security
FR Federal Register
OMB Office of Proposed Management and Budget
NPRM Notice of proposed rulemaking
U.S.C. United States Code
II. Background, Purpose and Legal Basis
The North Carolina Department of Transportation, who owns and operates the U.S. 70 (Alfred C. Cunningham) Bridge across the Trent River, mile 0.0, in New Bern, North Carolina, has requested this modification to allow the drawbridge to be maintained in the closed-to-navigation position to address traffic congestion created during peak traffic hours and to provide scheduled daily openings to effectively balance the needs of land transportation with the reasonable needs of navigation.
The U.S. 70 (Alfred C. Cunningham) Bridge across the Trent River, mile 0.0, in New Bern, North Carolina has a vertical clearance of 14 feet above mean high water in the closed position and unlimited vertical clearance above mean high water in the open position. The current operation schedule for the drawbridge is published in 33 CFR 117.843(a)
This proposed final rule is necessary to help alleviate traffic congestion during morning and evening commutes, Monday through Friday, except holidays; and balance the needs of land transportation with the reasonable needs of navigation. Vessels that can safely transit through the bridge in the closed position may do so at any time.
The Coast Guard is proposing this rulemaking under authority in 33 U.S.C. 499.
III. Discussion of Proposed Rule
Under this proposed final rule, the draw shall open on the hour and the half hour from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.; except from 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. and from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays, when the draw shall remain closed. The draw shall open on signal from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. to all vessels and shall open upon request at all times for vessels as defined in 33 CFR 117.31.
IV. Regulatory Analyses
We developed this proposed rule after considering numerous statutes and Executive Orders related to rulemaking. Below we summarize our analyses based on these statutes and Executive Orders and we discuss First Amendment rights of protestors.
A. Regulatory Planning and Review
Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess the costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, if regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits. Executive Order 13771 directs agencies to control regulatory costs through a budgeting process. This NPRM has not been designated a “significant regulatory action,” under Executive Order 12866. Accordingly, the NPRM has not been reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and pursuant to OMB guidance it is exempt from the requirements of Executive Order 13771.
This regulatory action determination is based on the fact that vessels can still transit the bridge on signal from 10 p.m. Start Printed Page 28547to 6 a.m., and on the hour and the half hour from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., except from 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. and from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays, when the draw shall remain closed. The draw shall open upon request at all times for vessels as defined in 33 CFR 117.31.
B. Impact on Small Entities
The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (RFA), 5 U.S.C. 601-612, as amended, requires federal agencies to consider the potential impact of regulations on small entities during rulemaking. 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 proposed rule would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.
While some owners or operators of vessels intending to transit the bridge may be small entities, for the reasons stated in section IV.A above this proposed rule would not have a significant economic impact on any vessel owner or operator.
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.
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 proposed rule. 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 the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT, section. The Coast Guard will not retaliate against small entities that question or complain about this proposed rule or any policy or action of the Coast Guard.
C. 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.).
D. Federalism and Indian Tribal Government
A rule has implications for federalism under Executive Order 13132, (Federalism), if it has a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government. We have analyzed this proposed rule under that Order and have determined that it is consistent with the fundamental federalism principles and preemption requirements described in Executive Order 13132.
Also, this proposed 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. If you believe this proposed rule has implications for federalism or Indian tribes, please contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section.
E. 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 (adjusted for inflation) or more in any one year. Though this proposed rule will not result in such an expenditure, we do discuss the effects of this proposed rule elsewhere in this preamble.
We have analyzed this rule under Department of Homeland Security Management Directive 023-01, Rev. 1, associated implementing instructions, and Environmental Planning Policy COMDTINST 5090.1 (series), which guide the Coast Guard in complying with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) (42 U.S.C. 4321-4370f). The Coast Guard has determined that this action is one of a category of actions that do not individually or cumulatively have a significant effect on the human environment. This proposed rule promulgates the operating regulations or procedures for drawbridges. Normally such actions are categorically excluded from further review, under paragraph L49, of Chapter 3, Table 3-1 of the U.S. Coast Guard Environmental Planning Implementation Procedures.
Neither a Record of Environmental Consideration nor a Memorandum for the Record are required for this rule. We seek any comments or information that may lead to the discovery of a significant environmental impact from this proposed rule.
G. Protest Activities
The Coast Guard respects the First Amendment rights of protesters. Protesters are asked to contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section to coordinate protest activities so that your message can be received without jeopardizing the safety or security of people, places or vessels.
V. Public Participation and Request for Comments
We view public participation as essential to effective rulemaking, and will consider all comments and material received during the comment period. Your comment can help shape the outcome of this rulemaking. If you submit a comment, please include the docket number for this rulemaking, indicate the specific section of this document to which each comment applies, and provide a reason for each suggestion or recommendation.
We encourage you to submit comments through the Federal eRulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov. If your material cannot be submitted using http://www.regulations.gov, contact the person in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this document for alternate instructions.
We accept anonymous comments. All comments received will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov and will include any personal information you have provided. For more about privacy and submissions in response to this document, see DHS's eRulemaking System of Records notice (85 FR 14226, March 11, 2020).
Documents mentioned in this NPRM as being available in this docket and all public comments, will be in our online docket at http://www.regulations.gov and can be viewed by following that website's instructions. Additionally, if you go to the online docket and sign up for email alerts, you will be notified when comments are posted or a final rule is published.
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For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Coast Guard proposes to amend 33 CFR part 117 as follows:
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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: End Amendment Part
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2. Revise § 117.843(a) to read as follows: End Amendment Part
(a) The draw of the U.S. 70 Bridge, mile 0.0, at New Bern:
(1) Shall open on the hour and the half hour from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., except during the times authorized in accordance with (a) (2) of this section.
(2) Shall remain closed from 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. and from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday; except holidays.
(3) Shall open on signal from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.
(4) Shall open upon request at all times for vessels as defined in § 117.31.
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Dated: April 28, 2020.
Rear Admiral, U.S. Coast Guard, Commander, Fifth Coast Guard District.
[FR Doc. 2020-09462 Filed 5-12-20; 8:45 am]
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