[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 31 (Friday, February 14, 2020)]
[Pages 8601-8602]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-03079]



Coast Guard

[Docket Number USCG-2020-0042]

Consolidation of Redundant Coast Guard Boat Stations

AGENCY: Coast Guard, DHS.

ACTION: Request for comments.


SUMMARY: We are requesting your comments on the planned consolidation 
of redundant Coast Guard boat stations. Many stations were established 
at a time when boats lacked engines and were powered by oars and 
paddles. With modern boat operating speeds and improved direction 
finding technology, many calls for Coast Guard assistance can be 
responded to by multiple units significantly faster than when these 
boat stations were first established. The combination of significantly 
improved response times, along with an overall reduction in rescue 
calls due to boating safety improvements throughout the nation, has 
resulted in a number of boat stations becoming redundant. This 
consolidation will result in a more robust response system by 
increasing staffing levels and capacity at select nearby boat stations. 
Such a consolidation creates synergy and more opportunities for boat 
operators to properly train instead of missing training opportunities 
while standing ready to respond to calls that do not come.

DATES: Written comments and related material may be submitted to the 
Coast Guard personnel specified. Your comments and related material 
must reach the Coast Guard on or before April 14, 2020.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by docket number USCG-
2020-0042 using the Federal rulemaking 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: For information about this document, 
please call or email Todd Aikins, Coast Guard Office of Boat Forces, 
202-372-2463, [email protected].


I. Table of Abbreviations

CFR Code of Federal Regulations
DHS Department of Homeland Security

II. Background and Purpose

    In October of 2017, the Government Accountability Office issued 
report GAO-18-9, titled ``Actions Needed to Close Stations Identified 
as Overlapping and Unnecessarily Duplicative.'' This GAO report 
recommended the consolidation of eighteen boat stations. Due to 
environmental and operational factors, the Coast Guard is not 
considering all eighteen boat stations identified in the GAO report for 
consolidation. Instead, we anticipate consolidating five stations, with 
implementation notionally scheduled for fiscal year 2021. These 
stations have been identified because there are other units nearby 
capable of responding to cases in these areas, and because these five 
stations respond to a low number of cases. We do not anticipate any 
adverse effect on Coast Guard response capability. We expect an 
improvement to the proficiency of boat operators as well as a less 
complicated response system.

III. Discussion

    Station Oxford and Stations-Small Fishers Island, Shark River, 
Roosevelt Inlet, and Salem have been identified for consolidation with 
neighboring stations.

IV. Public Participation and Request for Comments

    We encourage you to submit comments through the Federal portal at 
https://www.regulations.gov. If your material cannot be submitted using 
https://www.regulations.gov, contact the person in the FOR FURTHER 
INFORMATION CONTACT section of this document for alternate 
instructions. In your submission, please include the docket number for 
this notice and provide a reason for each suggestion or recommendation.
    We accept anonymous comments. All comments received will be posted 
without change to https://www.regulations.gov and will include any 
personal information you have provided. For more about privacy and 
submissions in response to this document, see DHS's Correspondence 
System of Records notice (84 FR 48645, September 26, 2018).
    Documents mentioned in this notice as being available in the 
docket, and all public comments, will be in our online docket at 
https://www.regulations.gov and can be viewed by following that 
website's instructions.

[[Page 8602]]

    Dated: February 11, 2020.
Matthew W. Sibley,
Rear Admiral, U.S. Coast Guard, Assistant Commandant for Capability.
[FR Doc. 2020-03079 Filed 2-13-20; 8:45 am]