[Federal Register Volume 63, Number 178 (Tuesday, September 15, 1998)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 49287-49288]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 98-24706]



Coast Guard

33 CFR Part 117


Drawbridge Operation Regulations; Sheboygan River, WI

AGENCY: Coast Guard, DOT.

ACTION: Final rule.


SUMMARY: The Coast Guard is changing the regulation governing the 
operation of the Eighth Street bridge at mile 0.69 over the Sheboygan 
River in Sheboygan, WI.
    The revised regulation will restrict bridge openings for 
recreational vessel traffic during peak vehicular traffic hours. Also, 
a permanent winter operating schedule is established with this final 

DATES: This regulation is effective October 15, 1998.

ADDRESSES: Documents concerning this regulation are available for 
inspection and copying at 1240 East Ninth Street, Room 2019, Cleveland, 
OH 44199-2060 between 6:30 a.m. and 3 p.m., Monday through Friday, 
except Federal holidays. The telephone number is (216) 902-6084.

Manager, Bridge Branch at (216) 902-6084.


Regulatory History

    The Coast Guard published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) 
which appeared in the Federal Register on June 3, 1998 (63 FR 30160). 
The Coast Guard received no comments or letters to the proposed 
rulemaking. No public hearing was requested and none was held.

Background and Purpose

    The proposed schedule was submitted to the Coast Guard by the City 
of Sheboygan, WI to address congestion problems at the bridge. The 
bridge is currently required to open on signal at 10 minutes after the 
hour, on the half-hour, and at 10 minutes before the hour, Monday 
through Saturday, between the hours of 6:10 a.m. and 7:10 p.m. There 
was no requested change to the current hours, but the City asked that 
the bridge not be required to open between 7:30 a.m. and 8:30 a.m., 
between 12 p.m. and 1 p.m., and between 4:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m., Monday 
through Friday, to relieve vehicular traffic congestion. The Eighth 
Street bridge is considered the primary roadway to the downtown central 
business district, which has grown considerably since 1995, attracting 
an increase in vehicle traffic across the bridge.
    Vehicular traffic count data supplied by the City indicated that 
traffic volume was at its highest during the hours identified above. 
The traffic data was weighed against the number of requests for bridge 
openings and the type of vessel traffic during the rush-hour periods. 
The bridge logs showed random openings and did not establish a need for 
commercial entities to pass through the draw during the requested 
restricted times.
    The City contends that the number of requested openings at Eighth 
Street bridge has decreased since a new marina, located in the outer 
harbor of Sheboygan, was constructed and opened in 1995. No data was 
received by the Coast Guard to support or refute this claim. The known 
existing marinas located beyond the bridge on Sheboygan River did not 
provide comments concerning the proposed rulemaking.
    The request to establish a permanent winter operating schedule was 
reviewed and deemed adequate by the Coast Guard. Both recreational and 
commercial marine activities are virtually shut down during winter 
months on Sheboygan River due to ice. The advance notice time requested 
by the City is consistent with established winter bridge schedules in 
the Great Lakes.
    Therefore, the Coast Guard is revising the regulations governing 
Eighth Street bridge by eliminating openings between 7:30 a.m. and 8:30 
a.m., between 12 p.m. and 1 p.m., and between 4:30 p.m.

[[Page 49288]]

and 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, from May 1 to October 31 each 
year. From November 1, to April 30 each year, mariners must provide a 
12-hour advance notice for requests to open the bridge.

Regulatory Evaluation

    This final rule is not a significant regulatory action under 
section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866 and does not require an 
assessment of potential costs and benefits under section 6(a)(3) of 
that order. It has been exempted from review by the Office of 
Management and Budget under that order. It is not significant under the 
regulatory policies and procedures of the Department of Transportation 
(DOT) (44 FR 11040 February 26, 1979). The Coast Guard expects the 
economic impact of this final rule to be so minimal that a full 
Regulatory Evaluation under paragraph 10e of the regulatory policies 
and procedures of DOT is unnecessary. The Coast Guard made this 
determination based on the documented use of the bridge and by the fact 
that this final rule does not prevent transiting of the bridge by 
vessels, but requires them to plan transits based on the revised 

Small Entities

    Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601-612), the Coast 
Guard must consider whether this final rule will have a significant 
economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. ``Small 
entities'' include independently owned and operate small businesses 
that are not dominant in their field and otherwise qualify as ``small 
business concerns'' under section 3 of the Small Business Act (15 
U.S.C. 632). Because it expects the impact of this final rule to be 
minimal, the Coast Guard certifies under 5 U.S.C. 605(b) that this 
final rule will not have a significant impact on a substantial number 
of small entities.

Collection of Information

    This final rule contains no collection of information requirement 
under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520).


    The Coast Guard has analyzed this final rule under the principles 
and criteria contained in Executive Order 12612 and has determined that 
this final rule does not have sufficient federalism implications to 
warrant the preparation of a Federalism Assessment.


    The Coast Guard considered the environmental impact of this rule 
and concluded that under figure 2-1, paragraph (32)(e) of COMDTINST 
M16475.1C, this final rule is categorically excluded from further 
environmental documentation based on the fact that it is a promulgation 
of the operating regulations of a drawbridge. A Categorical Exclusion 
Determination statement has been prepared and placed in the rulemaking 

List of Subjects in 33 CFR Part 117



    For reasons discussed in the preamble, the Coast Guard revises 33 
CFR Part 117 as follows:


    1. The authority citation for Part 117 continues to read as 

    Authority: 33 U.S.C. 499; 49 CFR 1.46; 33 CFR 1.05-1(g); Section 
117.255 also issued under the authority of Pub. L. 102-587, 106 
Stat. 5039.

    2. Section 117.1097 is revised to read as follows:

Sec. 117.1097  Sheboygan River

    The draw of the Eighth Street bridge, mile 0.69 at Sheboygan, shall 
open as follows:
    (a) From May 1 through October 31--
    (1) Between the hours of 6 a.m. and 10 p.m., the bridge shall open 
on signal, except that:
    (i) From 6:10 a.m. to 7:10 p.m., Monday through Saturday, the draw 
need open only at 10 minutes after the hour, on the half-hour, and 10 
minutes before the hour; and
    (ii) From Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays, the draw 
need not open between 7:30 a.m. and 8:30 a.m., between 12 p.m. and 1 
p.m., and between 4:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.
    (2) Between the hours of 10 p.m. and 6 a.m., the draw shall open on 
signal if at least 2 hours advance notice is provided.
    (b) From November 1 through April 30, the draw shall open on signal 
if at least 12 hours advance notice is provided.
    (c) At all times, the draw shall open as soon as possible for 
public vessels of the United States, state or local government vessels 
used for public safety, vessels in distress, vessels seeking shelter 
from rough weather, or any other emergency.

    Dated: August 27, 1998.
G. Cope,
Captain, U.S. Coast Guard Acting Commander, Ninth Coast Guard District.
[FR Doc. 98-24706 Filed 9-14-98; 8:45 am]