[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 179 (Thursday, September 15, 2016)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 63420-63427]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-22097]


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DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY

Coast Guard

46 CFR Part 106

[Docket No. USCG-2015-0086]
RIN 1625-AC23


Requirements for Vessels With Registry Endorsements or Foreign-
Flagged Vessels That Perform Certain Aquaculture Support Operations

AGENCY: Coast Guard, DHS.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: The Coast Guard is amending its regulations to implement 
Subsection 901(c) of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2010, which 
grants the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) the 
authority to issue a waiver allowing a documented vessel with only a 
registry endorsement or a foreign-flagged vessel to be used in certain 
aquaculture operations. Specifically, those operations include the 
treatment and/or protection of aquaculture fish from disease, parasitic 
infestation, or other threats to their health. The new part establishes 
the requirement for an owner or operator of a vessel that is issued a 
waiver allowing the vessel to conduct aquaculture support operations by 
the Secretary of DOT to notify the Coast Guard that the vessel owner or 
operator has been issued such a waiver. The part also establishes 
operational and geographic requirements for vessels that are issued 
such a waiver.

DATES: This final rule is effective October 17, 2016.

ADDRESSES: Documents mentioned in this preamble are part of docket 
USCG-2015-0086. To view public comments or documents mentioned in this 
preamble as being available in the docket, go to the Federal 
eRulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov, type the docket 
number in the ``SEARCH'' box and click ``SEARCH.'' Click on Open Docket 
Folder on the line associated with this rulemaking.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For information about this document, 
call or email Mr. David Belliveau, Fishing Vessels Division (CG-CVC-3), 
U.S. Coast Guard; telephone 202-372-1247, email 
[email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Table of Contents for Preamble

I. Abbreviations
II. Regulatory History
III. Basis and Purpose
IV. Background
V. Discussion of Comments and Changes
VI. Regulatory Analyses
    A. Regulatory Planning and Review
    B. Small Entities
    C. Assistance for Small Entities
    D. Collection of Information
    E. Federalism
    F. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act
    G. Taking of Private Property
    H. Civil Justice Reform
    I. Protection of Children
    J. Indian Tribal Governments
    K. Energy Effects
    L. Technical Standards
    M. Environment

I. Abbreviations

BLS U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
CBP U.S. Customs and Border Protection
CFR Code of Federal Regulations
CGAA Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2010
COD Certificate of Documentation
DHS U.S. Department of Homeland Security
DOT U.S. Department of Transportation
E.O. Executive Order
FR Federal Register
MARAD Maritime Administration
NAICS North American Industry Classification System
NPRM Notice of proposed rulemaking
OMB Office of Management and Budget
Pub. L. Public Law
RA Regulatory Analysis
SNPRM Supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking
U.S.C. United States Code

II. Regulatory History

    On July 30, 2015, we published a notice of proposed rulemaking 
(NPRM) entitled ``Requirements for Vessels With Registry Endorsements 
or Foreign-Flagged Vessels That Perform Certain Aquaculture Support 
Operations'' in the Federal Register (FR) (80 FR 45491). We received 
one submission with three comments on the proposed rule. No public 
meeting was requested and none was held.

III. Basis and Purpose

    Under Title 46 of United States Code (U.S.C.) 12102(d)(1), the 
Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) may issue an 
``Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver'' to allow a documented vessel 
with only a registry endorsement or a foreign-flagged vessel to be used 
in operations that treat aquaculture fish for or protect aquaculture 
fish from disease, parasitic infestation, or other threats to their 
health if the Secretary finds, after publishing a notice in the Federal 
Register, that a suitable vessel of the United States is not available 
to perform those services.\1\
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    \1\ These services are generally performed by ``wellboats'' 
(commonly understood as fishing and housing facility vessels) that 
pump fish out of their pens and into the vessels' fish holds. The 
fish hold is full of sea water and while the fish are inside the 
fish hold, a metered dose of de-lousing chemical is added to the 
fish hold. The water is then circulated vigorously to ensure 
complete mixing of the de-lousing agent. Upon completion of the 
treatment cycle, the fish are returned to their pens.
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    In this final rule, the Coast Guard is amending 46 CFR subchapter 
I--Cargo and Miscellaneous Vessels, by adding a new part 106 that 
establishes the requirement for an owner or operator of a vessel that 
is issued an Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver by the Maritime 
Administration (MARAD),\2\ for the purpose of conducting certain 
aquaculture support operations, to notify the Coast Guard that such a 
waiver has been issued. This new part also establishes operational and 
geographic requirements for a vessel that is issued such a waiver.
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    \2\ On October 14, 2014, the Secretary of Transportation 
delegated the authority to administer paragraph 901(c)(1) of the 
CGAA to the Maritime Administrator, MARAD.
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IV. Background

    On May 27, 2010, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) ruled 
that aquaculture activities constitute ``engag[ing] in the fisheries,'' 
and is thus within the meaning of 46 U.S.C. 108, for which a vessel 
must possess a Certificate of Documentation (COD) endorsed pursuant to 
46 U.S.C. 12113 (see CBP ruling HQ H105735).\3\ Title 46 U.S.C. 12113 
limits employment in the fisheries to a vessel issued a COD with a 
fishery endorsement. This effectively disqualifies any foreign-flagged 
vessel from carrying out these activities.
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    \3\ This ruling is available online from CBP by going to http://rulings.cbp.gov/, entering ``HQ H105735'' in the ``Search'' box and 
clicking ``Go''.
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    Section 901 of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2010 (CGAA) 
(Pub. L. 111-281) amended 46 U.S.C. 12102 by adding subsection (d). 
Pursuant to 46 U.S.C. 12102(d)(1), the Secretary of DOT may issue an 
Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver allowing a documented vessel with 
a registry endorsement or a foreign-flagged vessel to be used in 
operations that treat or protect aquaculture fish from disease,

[[Page 63421]]

parasitic infestation, or other threats to their health if the 
Secretary finds, after publishing a notice in the Federal Register, 
that a suitable vessel of the United States is not available that could 
perform those services.
    This rule is necessary to implement the Coast Guard's rulemaking 
responsibility as prescribed by 901(c)(2) of the CGAA. In that 
paragraph, Congress directed the Secretary of the U.S. Department of 
Homeland Security (DHS), the department under which the Coast Guard 
operates, to promulgate regulations that are necessary and appropriate 
to implement subsection 901(c). It also authorizes the Secretary of DHS 
to ``grant interim permits pending the issuance of such regulations 
upon receipt of applications containing the required information.'' 
Through this rule, we are establishing the requirement that an owner or 
operator of a vessel who is issued an Aquaculture Support Operations 
Waiver by MARAD for the purpose of conducting certain aquaculture 
support operations must notify the Coast Guard that such a waiver has 
been issued. This rule also establishes operational and geographic 
requirements for vessels that are issued such waivers.

V. Discussion of Comments and Changes

    One commenter submitted three comments for our consideration. These 
comments are available for viewing in the public docket for this 
rulemaking, where indicated under ADDRESSES. Below, we summarize these 
comments and our responses to them.
    A. The commenter states that instead of putting the notification 
burden on the owner/operator, the responsibility to notify the Coast 
Guard that an Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver has been issued for 
a particular vessel should rest with the DOT. The commenter states that 
having DOT notify the Coast Guard that DOT has issued an Aquaculture 
Support Operations Waiver is more efficient and practical than having 
the owner/operator notify the Coast Guard and that doing so would also 
reduce the risk of communication error or delay.
    We do not agree. First, it is important to note that the statute 
does not require MARAD to notify the Coast Guard that it has issued an 
Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver for an otherwise unqualified 
vessel to conduct aquaculture support operations in U.S. waters. 
Second, while the Coast Guard may expect MARAD to provide notification 
to the Coast Guard that it has issued an Aquaculture Support Operations 
Waiver, we cannot control the timing of MARAD's notification to the 
Coast Guard.
    It also benefits the owner/operator of a vessel to have full 
control over when to notify the Coast Guard that he or she has received 
an Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver because it facilitates faster 
notification and eliminates the potential for administrative delay. 
Accordingly, if an owner/operator wants to be sure that the Coast Guard 
is notified of his or her vessel's Aquaculture Support Operations 
Waiver before conducting aquaculture support operations in U.S. waters, 
it benefits the owner/operator to notify the Coast Guard because it 
removes the risk of administrative delay that could result in the Coast 
Guard not receiving notification before the vessel engages in 
aquaculture support operations.
    Prompt notification is necessary to ensure that the Coast Guard 
does not expend resources unnecessarily by deploying assets to conduct 
a law enforcement boarding to determine the eligibility of a vessel 
with only a registry endorsement or a foreign-flagged vessel to engage 
in aquaculture support operations in U.S. waters.
    As discussed earlier, CBP ruled that aquaculture support activities 
constitute engaging in the fisheries, for which a vessel must possess a 
COD with a fishery endorsement. This effectively disqualifies any U.S. 
vessel without a ``fisheries'' endorsement or any foreign-flagged 
vessel from carrying out these activities without an Aquaculture 
Support Operations Waiver issued by MARAD. The notification 
requirement, therefore, is necessary for the Coast Guard's maritime 
domain awareness which, in turn, will help streamline the Coast Guard's 
law enforcement activities.
    Additionally, placing the notification requirement on the owner/
operator (the waiver-applicant), is not unprecedented. The ``Small 
Vessel Waiver Program'' is a program administered by MARAD. Under that 
program, MARAD has the authority to grant waivers of the U.S. build 
requirements for foreign-built vessels to operate in the United States 
as commercial passenger vessels. Under the Small Vessel Waiver Program, 
at the time that MARAD issues a waiver to the applicant, MARAD informs 
the applicant of the need to notify the Coast Guard's National Vessel 
Documentation Center that a waiver has been issued which, in turn, 
makes the vessel eligible to receive a coastwise trade endorsement on 
the vessel's Certificate of Documentation. 46 CFR 388.6(a)(2) (MARAD 
requirement); 46 CFR 67.7 (Coast Guard COD requirement). Placing the 
responsibility for notifying the Coast Guard that an owner/operator has 
received a waiver from MARAD to engage in aquaculture support 
operations is consistent with the notification responsibility provided 
under an existing, similarly administered MARAD program.
    B. The commenter next states that the requirement to limit the 
vessel's aquaculture support operations to the geographic area 
identified in DOT's Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver lacks 
rationale and imposes a restriction not contemplated in the statute. We 
agree that the statute does not impose any restrictions regarding the 
geographic area within which a vessel may conduct aquaculture support 
operations. However, a vessel's geographic operational area is a factor 
in MARAD's analysis of whether there are any U.S. vessels available to 
perform those operations. Therefore, the requirement to conduct 
aquaculture support operations within the geographic area identified in 
MARAD's Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver, serves to uphold the 
terms of the waiver, which is issued, in large part, based upon the 
representations (including operational geographic representations \4\) 
of the owner/operator.
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    \4\ Since 2010, in every application for an interim permit that 
the Coast Guard has received [eight as of November 2015], the 
applicant has identified, in general terms, the geographic area in 
which the vessel would be conducting aquaculture support operations. 
This same geographic area of operations information was, in turn, 
also provided to MARAD for the purpose of aiding MARAD in its U.S. 
vessel availability analysis.
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    In the interest of providing flexibility consistent with the 
statute and the geographical limits of the Aquaculture Support 
Operations Waiver, however, the Coast Guard will accept waivers for 
operations in multiple locations. Accordingly, if an owner/operator 
anticipates that the vessel's aquaculture support operations will occur 
in several geographic locations, then the owner/operator can list those 
locations in its Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver application to 
MARAD to aid MARAD in its analysis of whether there are any suitable 
U.S.-flagged vessels available to conduct aquaculture support 
operations in those identified areas. The Coast Guard has revised Sec.  
106.120(a)(2) to reflect the possibility that a waiver may allow 
operations in more than one location. Because this change is a logical 
outgrowth of the NPRM, a supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking 
(SNPRM) is unnecessary. Further opportunity for public comment would 
only serve to delay completion of this rulemaking. Thus, we find good 
cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) to proceed with

[[Page 63422]]

publication of this final rule without an SNPRM.
    C. Lastly, the commenter inquires whether the regulations in this 
rulemaking represent the completion of the Coast Guard's rulemaking 
obligations under subsection 901(c) of the CGAA. At this time, the 
Coast Guard does not expect to engage in further rulemaking to 
implement subsection 901(c).However, as prescribed in paragraph 
901(c)(1), the Secretary of DOT was provided the discretionary 
authority to issue waivers allowing documented vessels with registry 
endorsements or foreign-flagged vessels to be used in aquaculture 
support operations when suitable vessels of the United States are not 
available that could perform those services. As noted above, on October 
14, 2014, the Secretary of DOT delegated the authority to administer 
paragraph 901(c)(1) of the CGAA to the Maritime Administrator. 
Accordingly, we defer to MARAD on the process associated with the 
application for, and the issuance of, an Aquaculture Support Operations 
Waiver.
    D. After publication of the NPRM, we determined that the wording of 
the ``Penalties'' section of the proposed regulation, Sec.  106.125, 
raised an unintended ambiguity by providing that a vessel owner, 
operator, or charterer not operating a vessel as required in this part 
is subject to penalty under 46 U.S.C. 12151. We believe this wording 
may be incorrectly interpreted to mean that there can only be a 
violation if the vessel is not operating. We are, therefore, making a 
minor change to Sec.  106.125 in this final rule to remove that 
unintended ambiguity by amending the section to provide that violation 
of this part is subject to the civil penalties set forth under 46 
U.S.C. 12151. In addition to removing the unintended ambiguity, this 
wording is consistent with 46 U.S.C. 12151 and is also consistent with 
other Coast Guard regulations. See, for example, 46 CFR 4.06-70 and 46 
CFR 16.115. Because this change is a logical outgrowth of the NPRM, an 
SNPRM is unnecessary. In addition, an SNPRM is unnecessary because the 
change is a non-substantive clarification. Further opportunity for 
public comment would only serve to delay completion of this rulemaking. 
Thus, we find good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) to proceed with 
publication of this final rule without an SNPRM.
    Additionally, in light of the Secretary of Transportation's 
delegation to MARAD to administer the Aquaculture Support Operations 
Waiver program, we are changing the nomenclature from ``DOT'' to 
``MARAD'' in Sec.  106.115 and Sec.  106.120 to more accurately reflect 
the issuing authority for aquaculture waivers. Because this change is a 
logical outgrowth of the proposed rule, an SNPRM is unnecessary. For 
the same reasons discussed earlier, we find good cause under 5 U.S.C. 
553(b)(B) to proceed with publication of this final rule without an 
SNPRM.

VI. Regulatory Analyses

    We developed this rule after considering numerous statutes and 
executive orders (E.O.s) related to rulemaking. Below we summarize our 
analyses based on these statutes or E.O.s.

A. Regulatory Planning and Review

    Executive Orders 12866, Regulatory Planning and Review, and 13563, 
Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review, 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 (including potential economic, environmental, public 
health and safety effects, distributive impacts, and equity). Executive 
Order 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and 
benefits, of reducing costs, of harmonizing rules, and of promoting 
flexibility.
    This rule is not a significant regulatory action under subsection 
3(f) of E.O. 12866 as supplemented by E.O. 13563. The Office of 
Management and Budget has not reviewed it under E.O. 12866. We 
developed an analysis of the costs and benefits of the rule to 
ascertain its probable impacts on industry. A final Regulatory Analysis 
(RA) follows.
    This RA provides an evaluation of the economic impacts associated 
with this final rule. The table that follows provides a summary of the 
rule's costs and benefits.

                 Table 1--Summary of the Rule's Impacts
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                Category                             Summary
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Applicability..........................  Owners or operators of vessels
                                          that are issued an Aquaculture
                                          Support Operations Waiver
                                          allowing a documented vessel
                                          with only a registry
                                          endorsement or a foreign-
                                          flagged vessel to be used in
                                          operations that treat
                                          aquaculture fish.
Affected Population....................  2 vessels.
Costs to Industry and Government ($, 7%  10-year: $819.65.
 discount rate).                         Annualized: $116.70.
Unquantified Benefits..................  Allows the Coast Guard to
                                          readily identify vessels with
                                          waivers to perform certain
                                          aquaculture support
                                          operations.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Wellboats (or live fish carriers) were especially affected by CBP's 
ruling (HQ H105735) that aquaculture activities constitute ``engaging 
in the fisheries'' and are thus within the meaning of 46 U.S.C. 108, 
for which a vessel must possess a Certificate of Documentation endorsed 
pursuant to 46 U.S.C. 12113. Wellboats are highly specialized vessels 
that are used to treat farmed salmon. The wellboats are designed to 
service large inventories of farmed salmon during the salt-water grow-
out phase and are specially equipped to protect the fish onboard the 
vessel. Direct treatment aboard a wellboat is currently the most 
efficient and effective method to treat salmon. If left untreated, 
salmon inventories can be destroyed and the industry can lose revenue. 
There are only a few coastwise qualified wellboats suitable and 
available for this work. This is why a considered Aquaculture Support 
Operations Waiver process that would allow inclusion of foreign-flagged 
wellboats is necessary.
    Through this rulemaking, the Coast Guard is amending its 
regulations to implement subsection 901(c) of the CGAA. Under that 
provision, the Secretary of DOT has the authority to issue a waiver 
allowing a documented vessel with only a registry endorsement or a 
foreign-flagged vessel to be used in certain aquaculture support 
operations that treat or protect aquaculture fish from disease, 
parasitic infestation, or other threats to their health if, after 
posting a notice in the Federal Register,

[[Page 63423]]

the Secretary of DOT determines that no suitable U.S.-flagged vessel is 
available. Under this rule, a vessel owner or operator of a vessel who 
has been issued a waiver by MARAD to perform aquaculture support 
operations will be required to notify and provide a copy of the waiver 
to the Coast Guard. Through this rulemaking, we are also establishing 
operational and geographic requirements for a vessel that is issued a 
waiver by MARAD to perform aquaculture support operations. For more 
information on these requirements, refer to Sec.  106.120 Operational 
and Geographic Requirements.
    No changes were made in the RA of this final rule as a result of 
public comments. The only change in this final rule's RA is that we 
updated the labor rates to reflect the most recent available wage data.
Affected Population
    The Coast Guard determined the affected population based on the 
number of Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver requests from vessel 
owners and operators. Since the 2010 CBP ruling, only one entity has 
applied for waivers for foreign-flagged wellboats to treat salmon. This 
U.S. entity operates two foreign-flagged wellboats, and we anticipate 
that this entity will continue to apply for Aquaculture Support 
Operations Waivers in the future. Therefore, this rule is expected to 
affect one U.S. entity that operates two vessels. Depending on the 
growth of the salmon aquaculture industry, there is the potential for 
the number of affected vessels to increase in the future. However, 
current trends indicate no increase in growth in the salmon aquaculture 
industry. Therefore, we did not consider, in this analysis, an annual 
increase in the number of Aquaculture Support Operations Waivers that 
would be submitted to the Coast Guard.
Costs
    In this rule, owners or operators of foreign-flagged vessels, which 
are issued waivers by MARAD to conduct certain aquaculture support 
operations, must notify the Coast Guard that such waivers have been 
issued. The costs of this rule include the costs to the industry to 
provide copies of the Aquaculture Support Operations Waivers and the 
costs to the Government to process the information. Aquaculture Support 
Operations Waivers will be issued on an annual basis per DOT 
requirements. Owners or operators of the vessels are required to 
provide copies of these waivers to the Coast Guard annually. Waivers 
are issued individually for each vessel involved in aquaculture support 
operations, and therefore, costs are estimated on a per vessel basis.
Industry Costs
    The Coast Guard estimates it will take 0.5 hours for a legal 
secretary to copy and send each Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver 
to the Coast Guard, via postal mail and electronic mail. The wage rate 
for a legal assistant was obtained from the U.S. Bureau of Labor 
Statistics (BLS), using Occupational Series 23-2011, Paralegals and 
Legal Assistants (May 2014). BLS reports that the mean hourly rate for 
a legal assistant is $24.92.\5\ To account for employee benefits, we 
use the load factor of 1.43, which we calculated from June 2014 BLS 
data.\6\ The loaded wage rate for a legal assistant is estimated at 
$35.70 per hour ($24.92 wage rate x 1.43 load factor). The expected 
cost to industry to provide copies of the Aquaculture Support 
Operations Waiver is $35.70 ($35.70 x 0.5 hours x 2 vessels). The total 
10-year undiscounted industry cost of this final rule is $357. Table 2 
shows the total 10-year cost of two affected vessels to be $250.74 and 
annualized cost of $35.70, both discounted at 7 percent.
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    \5\ Mean wage, http://www.bls.gov/oes/2014/may/oes232011.htm.
    \6\ Employer Costs for Employee Compensation news release text 
provides information on the employer compensation, and can be found 
at http://www.bls.gov/schedule/archives/ecec_nr.htm.

                                     Table 2--Total 10-Year Cost to Industry
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                           Discount rate
                              Year                                 Undiscounted  -------------------------------
                                                                       costs            7%              3%
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1...............................................................          $35.70          $33.36          $34.66
2...............................................................           35.70           31.18           33.65
3...............................................................           35.70           29.14           32.67
4...............................................................           35.70           27.24           31.72
5...............................................................           35.70           25.45           30.80
6...............................................................           35.70           23.79           29.90
7...............................................................           35.70           22.23           29.03
8...............................................................           35.70           20.78           28.18
9...............................................................           35.70           19.42           27.36
10..............................................................           35.70           18.15           26.56
                                                                 -----------------------------------------------
    Total.......................................................          357.00          250.74          304.53
Annualized......................................................  ..............           35.70           35.70
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Note: Total may not add due to rounding.

Government Costs
    The Coast Guard estimates it will take 0.5 hours per vessel for 
Coast Guard personnel at the GS-13 level to record the information from 
the Aquaculture Support Operations Waivers. The fully loaded wage rate 
for a GS-13 is $81, per Commandant Instruction 7310.1Q.\7\ The total 
cost for the Coast Guard is $81 [(0.5 hours x $81) x 2 vessels]. The 
total 10-year undiscounted Government cost of this final rule is $810. 
Table 3 shows the total Government 10-year discounted cost at $568.91, 
and the annualized cost at $81, both discounted at 7 percent.
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    \7\ See http://www.uscg.mil/directives/ci/7000-7999/CI_7310_1Q.pdf.

[[Page 63424]]



                                         Table 3--Total Government Cost
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                           Discount rate
                              Year                                 Undiscounted  -------------------------------
                                                                       costs            7%              3%
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1...............................................................          $81.00          $75.70          $78.64
2...............................................................           81.00           70.75           76.35
3...............................................................           81.00           66.12           74.13
4...............................................................           81.00           61.79           71.97
5...............................................................           81.00           57.75           69.87
6...............................................................           81.00           53.97           67.84
7...............................................................           81.00           50.44           65.86
8...............................................................           81.00           47.14           63.94
9...............................................................           81.00           44.06           62.08
10..............................................................           81.00           41.18           60.27
                                                                 -----------------------------------------------
    Total.......................................................          810.00          568.91          690.95
Annualized......................................................  ..............           81.00           81.00
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Note: Total may not add due to rounding.

    Table 4 displays the total costs on an undiscounted basis, and 
discounted at 7 percent and 3 percent interest rates, respectively. The 
total 10-year undiscounted cost of this rule is $1,167. The total 10-
year (industry and government) discounted cost of this final rule is 
$819.65 and the annualized cost is $116.70, both discounted at 7 
percent.

                                        Table 4--Total Costs of the Rule
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                       Total             Total, discounted
                              Year                                 undiscounted  -------------------------------
                                                                       costs            7%              3%
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1...............................................................         $116.70         $109.07         $113.30
2...............................................................          116.70          101.93          110.00
3...............................................................          116.70           95.26          106.80
4...............................................................          116.70           89.03          103.69
5...............................................................          116.70           83.21          100.67
6...............................................................          116.70           77.76           97.73
7...............................................................          116.70           72.67           94.89
8...............................................................          116.70           67.92           92.12
9...............................................................          116.70           63.48           89.44
10..............................................................          116.70           59.32           86.84
                                                                 -----------------------------------------------
    Total.......................................................        1,167.00          819.65          995.47
Annualized......................................................  ..............          116.70          116.70
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Note: Total may not add due to rounding.

Benefits
    This rule does not provide any quantitative benefits. However, it 
does have a qualitative benefit. It provides the Coast Guard with 
greater maritime domain awareness through the requirement that an owner 
or operator of a vessel who has received an Aquaculture Support 
Operations Waiver from MARAD must submit a copy of the waiver to the 
Coast Guard. The requirement to submit a copy of the waiver to the 
Coast Guard will ensure that appropriate Coast Guard officials are 
aware that foreign-flagged vessels or vessels with only registry 
endorsements are conducting aquaculture support activities in U.S 
waters pursuant to an Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver issued by 
DOT under the authority of 46 U.S.C. 12102(d)(1).

B. 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.
    There is one U.S. entity that operates two foreign-flagged vessels 
that would be affected by this rulemaking at this time. This entity is 
neither a not-for-profit nor a governmental organization. The North 
American Industry Classification System (NAICS) for this entity is 
424460, Fish and Seafood Merchant Wholesalers. An entity with this 
NAICS code is considered a small entity if it has less than 100 
employees. Using the small entity definition for the NAICS code, we 
determined the entity is classified as a small entity, since this 
entity has 40 employees. Table 5 shows information on the U.S. entity 
classified as a small entity by NAICS code, and the small entity 
standard size established by the Small Business Administration.

[[Page 63425]]



                              Table 5--NAICS Code and Small Entities Size Standards
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
          NAICS code                     Description                      Small business size standard
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
424460........................  Fish and Seafood Merchant      Less than 100 employees.
                                 Wholesalers.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We reviewed business revenue data provided by a publicly available 
source \8\ and found that this entity has annual revenue estimated at 
$4,800,000. Therefore, the expected burden on the company from this 
rulemaking is estimated at less than 0.001 percent of total annual 
revenue.
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    \8\ MANTA (http://www.manta.com/) is an online business service 
directory and search engine that provides business revenue and size 
data.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Therefore, 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.

C. Assistance for Small Entities

    Under subsection 213(a) of the Small Business Regulatory 
Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996, Public Law 104-121, we offered to 
assist small entities in understanding this rule so that they can 
better evaluate its effects on them and participate in the rulemaking. 
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.
    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).

D. Collection of Information

    This rule calls for a new collection of information under the 
Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, 44 U.S.C. 3501-3520. This collection 
is explained below under Estimate of Total Annual Burden. As defined in 
5 CFR 1320.3(c), ``collection of information'' comprises reporting, 
recordkeeping, monitoring, posting, labeling, and other, similar 
actions. The title and description of the information collection, a 
description of those who must collect the information, and an estimate 
of the total annual burden follow. The estimate covers the time for 
reviewing instructions, searching existing sources of data, gathering 
and maintaining the data needed, and completing and reviewing the 
collection.
    Under the provisions of the rule, an owner or operator of a vessel 
who is issued an Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver to conduct 
certain aquaculture support operations must notify the Coast Guard that 
such a waiver has been issued.
    Title: Requirements for Vessels that Perform Certain Aquaculture 
Support Operations.
    OMB Control Number: 1625-0126.
    Summary of the Collection of Information: An owner or operator of a 
vessel who is issued a waiver to conduct certain aquaculture support 
operations must notify the Coast Guard that such a waiver has been 
issued.
    Need for Information: This information is necessary to ensure that 
appropriate Coast Guard officials are aware that foreign-flagged 
vessels or documented vessels with only registry endorsements are 
conducting aquaculture support activities in U.S. waters pursuant to an 
Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver issued by DOT under the authority 
of 46 U.S.C. 12102(d)(1).
    Use of Information: The Coast Guard would use this information to 
enhance its maritime domain awareness and to streamline its law 
enforcement activities by ensuring that Coast Guard law enforcement 
officials are aware that foreign-flagged vessels or vessels with only a 
registry endorsement are conducting aquaculture support activities in 
U.S. waters pursuant to an Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver issued 
by DOT under the authority of 46 U.S.C. 12102(d)(1).
    Description of the Respondents: The respondents are owners or 
operators of vessels that are issued Aquaculture Support Operations 
Waivers by MARAD to conduct certain aquaculture support operations.
    Number of Respondents: The number of respondents is one per year.
    Frequency of Response: Aquaculture Support Operations Waivers are 
issued on an annual basis, so the frequency of response is one response 
per vessel, per year.
    Burden of Response: The estimated burden for each respondent is 0.5 
hours per vessel to copy Aquaculture Support Operations Waivers and 
send information to the Coast Guard.
    Estimate of Total Annual Burden: There is currently one entity 
operating two vessels that have been issued Aquaculture Support 
Operations Waivers. The total annual burden would be 1 hour (0.5 hours 
x 2 vessels). Assuming this task is performed by a legal assistant at a 
loaded hourly rate of $35.70, the annual cost burden for this 
requirement is $35.70 ($35.70 loaded wage rate x 1 total entity hours).
    You are not required to respond to a collection of information 
unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. OMB has not 
yet completed its review of this collection. Therefore, we are not 
making 46 CFR 106.115 effective until OMB completes action on our 
information collection request, at which time we will publish a Federal 
Register notice describing OMB's action and, if OMB grants approval, 
notifying you when that provision takes effect.

E. Federalism

    A rule has implications for federalism under E.O. 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 as described in E.O. 13132. Our 
analysis is explained below.
    This rule implements subsection 901(c) of the CGAA. Subsection 
901(c) amends section 12102 of chapter 121 of 46 U.S.C. by adding a 
waiver of certain Federal vessel documentation requirements for vessels 
performing aquaculture support operations. In paragraph 901(c)(2), 
Congress granted the Coast Guard, via delegation from the Secretary, 
exclusive authority to promulgate regulations that are necessary and 
appropriate for permitting nonqualified vessels to perform certain 
aquaculture support operations. Therefore, 46 CFR part 106 is 
established within a field foreclosed from State or local regulation. 
In light of the analysis above, this rule is consistent with the 
principles of federalism and preemption requirements in E.O. 13132.

[[Page 63426]]

F. 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 will not result in 
such an expenditure, we do discuss the effects of this rule elsewhere 
in this preamble.

G. Taking of Private Property

    This rule will not cause a taking of private property or otherwise 
have taking implications under E.O. 12630, Governmental Actions and 
Interference with Constitutionally Protected Property Rights.

H. Civil Justice Reform

    This rule meets applicable standards in sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) 
of E.O. 12988, Civil Justice Reform, to minimize litigation, eliminate 
ambiguity, and reduce burden.

I. Protection of Children

    We have analyzed this rule under E.O. 13045, Protection of Children 
from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks. This rule is not an 
economically significant rule and would not create an environmental 
risk to health or risk to safety that might disproportionately affect 
children.

J. Indian Tribal Governments

    This rule does not have tribal implications under E.O. 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.

K. Energy Effects

    We have analyzed this rule under E.O. 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 E.O. 12866 and is not likely to have a significant adverse effect 
on the supply, distribution, or use of energy.

L. Technical Standards

    The National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act, codified as a 
note to 15 U.S.C. 272, directs agencies to use voluntary consensus 
standards in their regulatory activities unless the agency provides 
Congress, through OMB, 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.

M. Environment

    We have analyzed this rule under Department of Homeland Security 
Management Directive 023-01 and Commandant Instruction M16475.lD, 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 it 
is one of a category of actions that do not individually or 
cumulatively have a significant effect on the human environment. A 
final environmental analysis checklist supporting this determination is 
available in the docket. This rule is categorically excluded under 
section 2.B.2, figure 2-1, paragraphs 34(a) and 34(d) of the 
Instruction. These paragraphs respectively pertain to promulgation of 
regulations that are editorial or procedural in nature, and those 
concerning vessel documentation requirements. This rule entails a minor 
regulatory change pertaining to vessels used in certain aquaculture 
operations and the Coast Guard's notification requirements for those 
vessels. Specifically, DOT has the authority to issue waivers allowing 
a documented vessel with a registry endorsement or a foreign-flagged 
vessel to be used in aquaculture support activities. The new part 
establishes the requirement for an owner or operator of a vessel that 
is issued a waiver to notify the Coast Guard. The part also establishes 
operational and geographic requirements for vessels that are issued 
such a waiver.

List of Subjects in 46 CFR Part 106

    Aquaculture operations, Coastwise, Fishing vessels, Registry 
endorsement, Waiver.

0
For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Coast Guard amends 46 
CFR by adding part 106 to read as follows:

Title 46--Shipping

PART 106--REQUIREMENTS FOR NONQUALIFIED VESSELS THAT PERFORM 
CERTAIN AQUACULTURE SUPPORT OPERATIONS

Sec.
106.100 Purpose.
106.105 Applicability.
106.110 Definitions.
106.115 Notification requirements.
106.120 Operational and geographic requirements.
106.125 Penalties.

    Authority: Sec. 901(c)(2), Pub. L. 111-281, 124 Stat. 2905, 
Title IX; Department of Homeland Security Delegation No. 0170.1.


Sec.  106.100  Purpose.

    The regulations in this part implement 46 U.S.C. 12102(d).


Sec.  106.105  Applicability.

    The regulations in this part apply to a documented vessel with only 
a registry endorsement or a foreign-flagged vessel that has been issued 
an Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver by the Department of 
Transportation (DOT) under 46 U.S.C. 12102(d)(1), for the purpose of 
conducting aquaculture support operations.


Sec.  106.110  Definitions.

    Aquaculture support operations means activities that treat 
aquaculture fish for or protect aquaculture fish from disease, 
parasitic infestation, or other threats to their health.


Sec.  106.115  Notification requirements.

    (a) Prior to operating in U.S. waters, a vessel owner, operator, or 
charterer that has been issued an Aquaculture Support Operations Waiver 
by DOT's Maritime Administration (MARAD) to conduct aquaculture support 
operations must notify the Coast Guard in writing of its status. The 
notification must include the following information:
    (1) The vessel(s) name(s);
    (2) The vessel's official and/or International Maritime 
Organization number;
    (3) The geographic location within the waters of the United States 
where the vessel(s) will conduct treatment operations;
    (4) The period of time during which the Aquaculture Support 
Operations Waiver for the vessel(s) is approved including:
    (i) The start date (MM/DD/YYYY); and
    (ii) The expiration date (MM/DD/YYYY); and
    (5) A copy of the MARAD-issued Aquaculture Support Operations 
Waiver.

[[Page 63427]]

    (b) Written notification must be made to the Commandant (CG-CVC), 
ATTN: Office of Commercial Vessel Compliance, U.S. Coast Guard Stop 
7501, 2703 Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20593-
7501, or by email to [email protected].


Sec.  106.120  Operational and geographic requirements.

    (a) Vessels with a MARAD-issued Aquaculture Support Operations 
Waiver, issued under 46 U.S.C. 12102(d)(1), for the purpose of 
performing aquaculture support operations are subject to the following 
restrictions:
    (1) Commercial operations in U.S. waters other than operations that 
treat or protect aquaculture fish are prohibited;
    (2) While conducting aquaculture support operations, vessels will 
operate solely within the geographic location(s) identified in the 
waiver issued by MARAD; and
    (3) Vessels will not conduct aquaculture support operations beyond 
the period of time approved in the waiver issued by MARAD.
    (b) Vessels conducting aquaculture support operations will, at all 
times, maintain a copy of the waiver issued by MARAD on board the 
vessel as proof of its eligibility to conduct aquaculture support 
operations.


Sec.  106.125  Penalties.

    A person who violates any requirement prescribed by the regulations 
in this part is subject to penalty under 46 U.S.C. 12151.

    Dated: September 9, 2016.
V.B. Gifford, Jr.,
Captain, U.S. Coast Guard, Director of Inspections and Compliance.
[FR Doc. 2016-22097 Filed 9-14-16; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 9110-04-P