Special Local Regulation; Nanticoke River, Sharptown, MD

CourtCoast Guard
Citation87 FR 14193
Record Number2022-05258
Published date14 March 2022
Federal Register, Volume 87 Issue 49 (Monday, March 14, 2022)
[Federal Register Volume 87, Number 49 (Monday, March 14, 2022)]
                [Proposed Rules]
                [Pages 14193-14197]
                From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
                [FR Doc No: 2022-05258]
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                DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY
                Coast Guard
                33 CFR Part 100
                [Docket Number USCG-2022-0122]
                RIN 1625-AA08
                Special Local Regulation; Nanticoke River, Sharptown, MD
                AGENCY: Coast Guard, Homeland Security (DHS).
                ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.
                -----------------------------------------------------------------------
                SUMMARY: The Coast Guard is proposing to establish a temporary special
                local regulation for certain waters of the Nanticoke River. This action
                is necessary to provide for the safety of life on these navigable
                waters located at Sharptown, MD, during a high-speed power boat racing
                event on May 13, 2022, May 14, 2022, and May 15, 2022. This proposed
                rulemaking would prohibit persons and vessels from entering the
                regulated area unless authorized by the Captain of the Port Maryland-
                National Capital Region or the Coast Guard Event Patrol Commander. We
                invite your comments on this proposed rulemaking.
                DATES: Comments and related material must be received by the Coast
                Guard on or before April 13, 2022.
                ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by docket number USCG-
                2022-0122 using the Federal Decision Making Portal at https://www.regulations.gov. See the ``Public Participation and Request for
                Comments'' portion of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section for further
                instructions on submitting comments.
                FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: If you have questions about this
                proposed rulemaking, call or email Mr. Ron Houck, U.S. Coast Guard
                Sector Maryland-National Capital Region; telephone 410-576-2674, email
                [email protected].
                SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
                I. Table of Abbreviations
                CFR Code of Federal Regulations
                COTP Captain of the Port
                DHS Department of Homeland Security
                FR Federal Register
                NPRM Notice of proposed rulemaking
                PATCOM Coast Guard Patrol Commander
                Sec. Section
                U.S.C. United States Code
                II. Background, Purpose, and Legal Basis
                 The Carolina Virginia Racing Association of Newport News, VA,
                notified the Coast Guard that it will be conducting the Sharptown
                Regatta from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on May 14, 2022 and those same hours on
                May 15, 2022. The high-speed power boat racing event consists of
                approximately 100 participating racing boats--including hydroplanes and
                runabouts of various classes--9 to 12 feet in length. The vessels will
                be competing in a counter-clockwise direction along a marked
                approximately 1-mile long course located on the Nanticoke River,
                adjacent to the Cherry Beach Park and Boat Ramp at Sharptown, MD. In
                addition, a non-race day of practice and testing will be conducted in
                the waterway from noon to 5 p.m. on May 13, 2022. Event planners have
                stated they will not have any spectators areas identified on the water
                for this 3-day event. Hazards from
                [[Page 14194]]
                the power boat racing event include risks of injury or death resulting
                from near or actual contact among participant vessels and waterway
                users if normal vessel traffic were to interfere with the event.
                Additionally, such hazards include participants operating within
                designated navigation channels, as well as operating near approaches to
                a local public boat ramps, public recreation and fishing areas, and
                waterfront businesses and residences. The COTP Maryland-National
                Capital Region has determined that potential hazards associated with
                the power boat races would be a safety concern for anyone intending to
                participate in this event and for vessels that operate within specified
                waters of the Nanticoke River.
                 The purpose of this rulemaking is to protect event participants,
                non-participants and transiting vessels before, during, and after the
                scheduled event. The Coast Guard is proposing this rulemaking under
                authority in 46 U.S.C. 70041.
                III. Discussion of Proposed Rule
                 The COTP Maryland-National Capital Region is proposing to establish
                special local regulation from 11 a.m. on May 13, 2022, through 6 p.m.
                on May 15, 2022. The regulations would be enforced from 11 a.m. to 6
                p.m. on May 13, 2022, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on May 14, 2022, and from 9
                a.m. to 6 p.m. on May 15, 2022. The regulated area would cover all
                navigable waters of the Nanticoke River within an area bounded by a
                line connecting the following points: From the shoreline downriver from
                the Maryland S.R. 313 (Sharptown Road) Highway Bridge, at position
                latitude 38[deg]32'42'' N, longitude 075[deg]43'19'' W, thence
                southeast across the Nanticoke River to the shoreline at latitude
                38[deg]32'38'' N, longitude 075[deg]43'12'' W, thence north and east
                along the shoreline to latitude 38[deg]33'08'' N, longitude
                075[deg]42'33'' W, thence northwest across the Nanticoke River to the
                shoreline at latitude 38[deg]33'13'' N, longitude 075[deg]42'42'' W,
                thence south and west along the shoreline to and terminating at the
                point of origin. The regulated area is approximately 1,500 yards in
                length and 300 yards in width.
                 This proposed rule provides additional information about areas
                within the regulated area, their definitions, and the restrictions that
                would apply to mariners. These areas include ``Race Area,'' ``Buffer
                Area,'' and ``Milling Area.''
                 The proposed duration of the special local regulation and size of
                the regulated area is intended to ensure the safety of life on these
                navigable waters before, during, and after the high-speed power boat
                racing event, scheduled to take place from noon to 5 p.m. on May 13,
                2022, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on May 14, 2022, and, from 10 a.m. to 5
                p.m. on May 15, 2022. The COTP and the Coast Guard Event PATCOM would
                have authority to forbid and control the movement of all vessels and
                persons, including event participants, in the regulated area. When
                hailed or signaled by an official patrol, a vessel or person in the
                regulated area would be required to immediately comply with the
                directions given by the COTP or Event PATCOM. If a person or vessel
                fails to follow such directions, the Coast Guard may expel them from
                the area, issue them a citation for failure to comply, or both.
                 Except for Sharptown Regatta participants and vessels already at
                berth, a vessel or person would be required to get permission from the
                COTP or Event PATCOM before entering the regulated area. Vessel
                operators would be able to request permission to enter and transit
                through the regulated area by contacting the Event PATCOM on VHF-FM
                channel 16. Vessel traffic would be able to safely transit the
                regulated area once the Event PATCOM deems it safe to do so. A vessel
                within the regulated area must operate at safe speed that minimizes
                wake. A person or vessel not registered with the event sponsor as a
                participant or assigned as official patrols would be considered a
                spectator. Official Patrols are any vessel assigned or approved by the
                Commander, Coast Guard Sector Maryland-National Capital Region with a
                commissioned, warrant, or petty officer onboard and displaying a Coast
                Guard ensign. Official Patrols enforcing this regulated area can be
                contacted on VHF-FM channel 16 and channel 22A.
                 If permission is granted by the COTP or Event PATCOM, a person or
                vessel would be allowed to enter the regulated area or pass directly
                through the regulated area as instructed. Vessels would be required to
                operate at a safe speed that minimizes wake while within the regulated
                area in a manner that would not endanger event participants or any
                other craft. A spectator vessel must not loiter within the navigable
                channel while within the regulated area. Only participant vessels and
                official patrol vessels would be allowed to enter the race area and
                milling area. The Coast Guard would publish a notice in the Fifth Coast
                Guard District Local Notice to Mariners and issue a marine information
                broadcast on VHF-FM marine band radio announcing specific event dates
                and times.
                 The regulatory text we are proposing appears at the end of this
                document.
                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 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. 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).
                 This regulatory action determination is based on the size and
                duration of the regulated area, which would impact a small designated
                area of the Nanticoke River for 25 total enforcement hours. This
                waterway supports tug and barge traffic year round and recreational
                vessel traffic, which at its peak, occurs during the summer season.
                Although this regulated area extends across the entire width of the
                waterway, the rule would allow vessels and persons to seek permission
                to enter the regulated area, and vessel traffic able to do so safely
                would be able to transit the regulated area as instructed by the Event
                PATCOM. Such vessels must operate at safe speed that minimizes wake and
                not loiter within the navigable channel while within the regulated
                area. Moreover, the Coast Guard would issue a Broadcast Notice to
                Mariners via VHF-FM marine channel 16 about the status of the regulated
                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 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
                safety zone may be small entities, for the
                [[Page 14195]]
                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 call or email 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 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 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 call or email 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 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 proposed rule under Department of Homeland
                Security Directive 023-01, Rev. 1, associated implementing
                instructions, 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 made
                a preliminary determination 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 involves
                implementation of regulations within 33 CFR part 100 applicable to
                organized marine events on the navigable waters of the United States
                that could negatively impact the safety of waterway users and shore
                side activities in the event area for 25 total enforcement hours.
                Normally such actions are categorically excluded from further review
                under paragraph L61 of Appendix A, Table 1 of DHS Instruction Manual
                023-01-001-01, Rev. 1. For instructions on locating the docket, see the
                ADDRESSES section of this preamble. 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 call or email 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.
                 Submitting comments. We encourage you to submit comments through
                the Federal Decision Making Portal at https://www.regulations.gov. To
                do so, go to https://www.regulations.gov, type USCG-2022-0122 in the
                ``SEARCH'' box and click ``SEARCH.'' Next, look for this document in
                the Search Results column, and click on it. Then click on the Comment
                option. If you cannot submit your material by using https://www.regulations.gov, call or email the person in the FOR FURTHER
                INFORMATION CONTACT section of this proposed rule for alternate
                instructions.
                 Viewing material in docket. To view documents mentioned in this
                proposed rule as being available in the docket, find the docket as
                described in the previous paragraph, and then select ``Supporting &
                Related Material'' in the Document Type column. Public comments will
                also be placed in our online docket and can be viewed by following
                instructions on the https://www.regulations.gov Frequently Asked
                Questions web page. We review all comments received, but we will only
                post comments that address the topic of the proposed rule. We may
                choose not to post off-topic, inappropriate, or duplicate comments that
                we receive.
                 Personal information. We accept anonymous comments. Comments we
                post to https://www.regulations.gov will include any personal
                information you have provided. For more about privacy and submissions
                to the docket in response to this document, see DHS's eRulemaking
                System of Records notice (85 FR 14226, March 11, 2020).
                List of Subjects in 33 CFR Part 100
                 Marine safety, Navigation (water), Reporting and recordkeeping
                requirements, Waterways.
                 For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Coast Guard is
                proposing to amend 33 CFR part 100 as follows:
                PART 100--SAFETY OF LIFE ON NAVIGABLE WATERS
                0
                1. The authority citation for part 100 continues to read as follows:
                 Authority: 46 U.S.C. 70041; 33 CFR 1.05-1.
                0
                2. Add Sec. 100.T05-0122 to read as follows:
                [[Page 14196]]
                Sec. 100.T05-0122 Sharptown Regatta, Nanticoke River, Sharptown, MD.
                 (a) Locations. All coordinates are based on datum NAD 1983.
                 (1) Regulated area. All navigable waters of the Nanticoke River,
                within an area bounded by a line connecting the following points: From
                the shoreline downriver from the Maryland S.R. 313 (Sharptown Road)
                Highway Bridge, at position latitude 38[deg]32'42'' N, longitude
                075[deg]43'19'' W, thence southeast across the Nanticoke River to the
                shoreline at latitude 38[deg]32'38'' N, longitude 075[deg]43'12'' W,
                thence north and east along the shoreline to latitude 38[deg]33'08'' N,
                longitude 075[deg]42'33'' W, thence northwest across the Nanticoke
                River to the shoreline at latitude 38[deg]33'13'' N, longitude
                075[deg]42'42'' W, thence south and west along the shoreline to and
                terminating at the point of origin. The race area, buffer area, and
                milling area are within the regulated area.
                 (2) Race area. Located within the waters of the Nanticoke River,
                between the Maryland S.R. 313 (Sharptown Road) Highway Bridge and
                Nanticoke River Channel Light 43 (LLNR 24175) in position
                38[deg]33'07.79'' N, 075[deg]42'44.93'' W, at Sharptown, MD. The race
                area is within the buffer area.
                 (3) Buffer area. The buffer area is a polygon in shape measuring
                approximately 300 feet in all directions surrounding the entire race
                area described in the preceding paragraph of this section. The area is
                bounded by a line commencing at the shoreline at position latitude
                38[deg]32'47'' N, longitude 075[deg]43'13'' W, thence southeast along
                the northern extent of the Maryland S.R. 313 (Sharptown Road) Highway
                Bridge to latitude 38[deg]32'41'' N, longitude 075[deg]43'06'' W,
                thence northeast to latitude 38[deg]33'01'' N, longitude
                075[deg]42'39'' W, thence northwest to latitude 38[deg]33'08'' N,
                longitude 075[deg]42'44'' W, thence southwest to and terminating at the
                point of origin.
                 (4) Milling area. The milling area is a polygon in shape measuring
                approximately 200 yards in length by 200 yards in width. The area is
                southwest and down river from the Maryland S.R. 313 (Sharptown Road)
                Highway Bridge, bounded by a line commencing at the shoreline at
                position latitude 38[deg]32'47'' N, longitude 075[deg]43'13'' W, thence
                southeast along the northern extent of the Maryland S.R. 313 (Sharptown
                Road) Highway Bridge to latitude 38[deg]32'42'' N, longitude
                075[deg]43'07'' W, thence southeast to latitude 38[deg]32'38'' N,
                longitude 075[deg]43'12'' W, thence northwest to latitude
                38[deg]32'42'' N, longitude 075[deg]43'19'' W, thence northeast to and
                terminating at the point of origin.
                 (b) Definitions. As used in this section--
                 Buffer area is a neutral area that surrounds the perimeter of the
                race area within the regulated area described by this section. The
                purpose of a buffer area is to minimize potential collision conflicts
                with marine event participants or high-speed power boats and nearby
                transiting vessels. This area provides separation between a race area
                and other vessels that are operating in the vicinity of the regulated
                area established by the special local regulations in this section.
                 Captain of the Port (COTP) Maryland-National Capital Region means
                the Commander, U.S. Coast Guard Sector Maryland-National Capital Region
                or any Coast Guard commissioned, warrant or petty officer who has been
                authorized by the COTP to act on his behalf.
                 Event Patrol Commander or Event PATCOM means a commissioned,
                warrant, or petty officer of the U.S. Coast Guard who has been
                designated by the Commander, Coast Guard Sector Maryland-National
                Capital Region.
                 Milling area is an area described by a line bound by coordinates
                provided in latitude and longitude that outlines the boundary of a
                milling area within the regulated area defined by this section. The
                area is used before a race start to assemble teams and warm up the
                participating boats engines while operating off plane.
                 Official patrol means any vessel assigned or approved by Commander,
                Coast Guard Sector Maryland-National Capital Region with a
                commissioned, warrant, or petty officer on board and displaying a Coast
                Guard ensign.
                 Participant means all persons and vessels registered with the event
                sponsor as participating in the ``Sharptown Regatta'' event, or
                otherwise designated by the event sponsor as having a function tied to
                the event.
                 Race area is an area described by a line bound by coordinates
                provided in latitude and longitude that outlines the boundary of a race
                area within the regulated area defined by this section.
                 Spectator means a person or vessel not registered with the event
                sponsor as a participant or assigned as official patrols.
                 (c) Special local regulations. (1) The COTP Maryland-National
                Capital Region or Event PATCOM may forbid and control the movement of
                all vessels and persons, including event participants, in the regulated
                area described in paragraph (a)(1) of this section. When hailed or
                signaled by an official patrol, a vessel or person in the regulated
                area shall immediately comply with the directions given by the patrol.
                Failure to do so may result in the Coast Guard expelling the person or
                vessel from the area, issuing a citation for failure to comply, or
                both. The COTP Maryland-National Capital Region or Event PATCOM may
                terminate the event, or a participant's operations at any time the COTP
                Maryland-National Capital Region or Event PATCOM believes it necessary
                to do so for the protection of life or property.
                 (2) Except for participants and vessels already at berth, a person
                or vessel within the regulated area at the start of enforcement of this
                section must immediately depart the regulated area.
                 (3) A spectator must contact the Event PATCOM to request permission
                to either enter or pass through the regulated area. The Event PATCOM,
                and official patrol vessels enforcing this regulated area, can be
                contacted on marine band radio VHF-FM channel 16 (156.8 MHz) and
                channel 22A (157.1 MHz). If permission is granted, the spectator must
                pass directly through the regulated area as instructed by Event PATCOM.
                A vessel within the regulated area must operate at safe speed that
                minimizes wake. A spectator vessel must not loiter within the navigable
                channel while within the regulated area.
                 (4) Only participant vessels and official patrol vessels are
                allowed to enter and remain within the race area and milling area.
                 (5) Only participant vessels and official patrol vessels are
                allowed to enter and transit directly through the buffer area in order
                to arrive at or depart from the race area.
                 (6) A person or vessel that desires to transit, moor, or anchor
                within the regulated area must obtain authorization from the COTP
                Maryland-National Capital Region or Event PATCOM. A person or vessel
                seeking such permission can contact the COTP Maryland-National Capital
                Region at telephone number 410-576-2693 or on Marine Band Radio, VHF-FM
                channel 16 (156.8 MHz) or the Event PATCOM on Marine Band Radio, VHF-FM
                channel 16 (156.8 MHz).
                 (7) The Coast Guard will publish a notice in the Fifth Coast Guard
                District Local Notice to Mariners and issue a marine information
                broadcast on VHF-FM marine band radio announcing specific event dates
                and times.
                 (d) Enforcement officials. The Coast Guard may be assisted with
                marine event patrol and enforcement of the regulated area by other
                federal, state, and local agencies.
                 (e) Enforcement periods. This section will be enforced from 11 a.m.
                to 6 p.m. on May 13, 2022, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
                [[Page 14197]]
                on May 14, 2022, and from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on May 15, 2022.
                 Dated: March 8, 2022.
                David E. O'Connell,
                Captain, U.S. Coast Guard, Captain of the Port Maryland-National
                Capital Region.
                [FR Doc. 2022-05258 Filed 3-11-22; 8:45 am]
                BILLING CODE 9110-04-P
                

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