Regulated Navigation Area; Lake Washington, Seattle, WA

Federal Register, Volume 84 Issue 249 (Monday, December 30, 2019)
[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 249 (Monday, December 30, 2019)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 71823-71824]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office []
[FR Doc No: 2019-27985]
[[Page 71823]]
Coast Guard
33 CFR Part 165
[Docket Number USCG-2019-0296]
RIN 1625-AA11
Regulated Navigation Area; Lake Washington, Seattle, WA
AGENCY: Coast Guard, DHS.
ACTION: Final rule.
SUMMARY: The Coast Guard is proposing to establish a permanent
regulated navigation area for certain waters of Lake Washington. The
regulated navigation area is intended to protect personnel and vessels
from potential hazards created by excessive vessel wake prior to and
following high traffic Seafair events.
DATES: This rule is effective January 29, 2020.
ADDRESSES: To view documents mentioned in this preamble as being
available in the docket, go to, type USCG-
2019-0296 in the ``SEARCH'' box and click ``SEARCH.'' Click on Open
Docket Folder on the line associated with this rule.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: If you have questions on this rule,
call or email Lieutenant Ellie Wu, Sector Puget Sound Waterways
Management, Coast Guard; telephone 206-217-6051,
[email protected].
I. Table of Abbreviations
CFR Code of Federal Regulations
DHS Department of Homeland Security
FR Federal Register
NPRM Notice of proposed rulemaking
Sec. Section
U.S.C. United States Code
II. Background Information and Regulatory History
 The Coast Guard was notified by the Mercer Island Police Department
of hazardous conditions associated with increased vessel and swimmer
congestion after high traffic Seafair marine events, which can make
routine navigation for persons and vessels unsafe. The Seafair event
draws an extraordinary amount of boaters and persons to the waterway to
observe several high traffic events, such as the Seafair Hydroplane
Races and Seafair Air Shows. The wakes created by transiting vessels
near the vicinity of vessels moored to the log boom during high traffic
events pose a safety concern to vessels and swimmers in the area. Coast
Guard action is needed to restrict vessel movement prior to and after
Seafair events where significant marine traffic endanger the safety of
swimmers and vessels proximate to the log boom.
 In response, on May 28, 2019, the Coast Guard published a notice of
proposed rulemaking (NPRM) titled Regulated Navigation Area; Lake
Washington, Seattle, WA 84 FR 24418. There we stated why we issued the
NPRM, and invited comments on our proposed regulatory action related to
this regulated navigation area. During the comment period that ended
June 27, 2019, we received no comments.
III. Legal Authority and Need for Rule
 The Coast Guard is issuing this rule under authority in 46 U.S.C.
70034 (previously 33 U.S.C. 1231). The Coast Guard Thirteenth District
Commander has determined that there are potential hazards associated
with Seafair activities, which usually occur on Lake Washington during
the last week of July and the first two weeks of August. The purpose of
this rule is to ensure safety of vessels and the navigable waters in
the regulated navigation area prior to and after Seafair activities.
IV. Discussion of Comments, Changes and the Rule
 As noted above, we received no comments on our NPRM published May
28, 2019. There are no changes in the regulatory text of this rule from
the proposed rule in the NPRM.
 The regulated navigation area will cover all navigable waters
within Lake Washington south of the Interstate 90 floating Bridge and
north of a line between Bailey Peninsula and Mercer Island. The
duration of the regulated navigation area is intended to protect
personnel and vessels in these navigable waters from excessive wake
associated with vessels before and after high traffic Seafair events.
Vessels transiting the area will be required to create minimum wake, at
speeds of 7 miles per hour or less, unless a higher minimum speed is
necessary to maintain bare steerageway. Enforcement periods for this
rule will occur daily prior to and immediately following Seafair
V. Regulatory Analyses
 We developed this rule after considering numerous statutes and
Executive orders related to rulemaking. Below we summarize our analyses
based on a number of 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 size,
location, duration and time-of-day of the regulated navigation area.
Vessel traffic will be able to transit through the regulated navigation
area, and the regulation will only impact a small designated area of
Lake Washington for less than four days. Moreover, the Coast Guard will
issue a Broadcast Notice to Mariners via VHF-FM marine channel 16 about
the regulated navigation area.
B. Impact on Small Entities
 The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980, 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 received no comments from the Small Business
Administration on this rulemaking. 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.
 While some owners or operators of vessels intending to transit the
regulated navigation area may be small entities, for the reasons stated
in section IV.A above, this rule will not have a significant economic
impact on any vessel owner or operator.
 Under section 213(a) of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement
Fairness Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-121), we want to assist small
entities in understanding this 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
[[Page 71824]]
 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). 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.
C. Collection of Information
 This rule will not call for a new collection of information under
the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520).
D. Federalism and Indian Tribal Governments
 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 rule under that Order and have
determined that it is consistent with the fundamental federalism
principles and preemption requirements described in Executive Order
 Also, this 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 rule has implications for federalism or Indian tribes,
please contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT
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 rule would not result
in such an expenditure, we do discuss the effects of this rule
elsewhere in this preamble.
F. Environment
 We have analyzed this rule under Department of Homeland Security
Directive 023-01 and Environmental Planning COMDTINST 5090.1 (series),
which guide the Coast Guard in complying with the National
Environmental Policy Act of 1969(42 U.S.C. 4321-4370f), and have
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 rule involves a regulated navigation area enforced
annually for a total of less than 4 days that would restrict vessel
speed. It is categorically excluded from further review under paragraph
L60(a) in Table 3-1 of U.S. Coast Guard Environmental Planning
Implementing Procedures 5090.1. A Record of Environmental Consideration
supporting this determination is available in the docket where
indicated under ADDRESSES.
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.
List of Subjects in 33 CFR Part 165
 Harbors, Marine safety, Navigation (water), Reporting and
recordkeeping requirements, Security measures, Waterways.
 For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Coast Guard amends
33 CFR part 165 as follows:
1. The authority citation for part 165 continues to read as follows:
 Authority: 46 U.S.C. 70034, 70051; 33 CFR 1.05-1, 6.04-1, 6.04-
6, and 160.5; Department of Homeland Security Delegation No. 0170.1.
2. Add Sec. 165.1341 before the undesignated center heading
``Fourteenth Coast Guard District'' to read as follows:
Sec. 165. 1341 Regulated Navigation Area; Lake Washington, Seattle,
 (a) Location. The following area is a regulated navigation area:
All waters of Lake Washington south of the Interstate 90 Floating West
Bound Bridge and north of the points between Bailey Peninsula at
47[deg]33'14.4'' N, 122[deg]14'47.3'' W and Mercer Island at
47[deg]33'24.5'' N, 122[deg]13'52.5'' W.
 (b) Definitions. As used in this section, designated representative
means a Coast Guard Patrol Commander, including a Coast Guard coxswain,
petty officer, or other officer operating a Coast Guard vessel and a
Federal, State, and local officer designated by or assisting the
Captain of the Port Puget Sound (COTP) in the enforcement of the
regulated navigation zone.
 (c) Regulations. All vessels and persons transiting the regulated
navigation area described in paragraph (a) of this section must proceed
at a speed which creates minimum wake, 7 miles per hour or less, unless
a higher minimum speed is necessary to maintain bare steerageway.
 (d) Enforcement periods. This section will be enforced annually
immediately before and after Seafair events which usually occurs during
the last week in July and the first two weeks of August. The event will
be one week or less in duration and the specific dates and times of the
enforcement periods will be published in a notice of enforcement in the
Federal Register.
 Dated: September 26, 2019.
A.J. Vogt,
RADM, U.S. Coast Guard, Commander, Thirteenth Coast Guard District.
[FR Doc. 2019-27985 Filed 12-27-19; 8:45 am]