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Federal Register Highlights – 12/18/12

December 18, 2012

Unpublished, time-sensitive and proposed rules for December 18, 2012:

RULE: The Coast Guard is changing the operating schedule governing the Freeport Drawbridge, mile 46.0, over the Sacramento River. The bridge owner proposed to change the ‘‘on demand’’ bridge opening hours and dates, due to a documented decrease in drawbridge openings compared to other nearby bridges. The change is to address the issue of misalignment between drawbridge staffing and actual drawbridge operation, resulting in unnecessary staffing of the drawbridge during periods of navigational inactivity. This rule is effective January 17, 2013.

TEMPORARY RULE: The Coast Guard is establishing temporary safety zones around the Columbia Grain facility on the Willamette River in Portland, OR, and the United Grain Corporation facility on the Columbia River in Vancouver, WA. These safety zones extend to the waters of the Columbia and Willamette Rivers, respectively, approximately between the navigable channel and the facility described. These safety zones are being established to ensure that protest activities relating to a labor dispute involving these facilities do not create hazardous navigation conditions for vessels in the navigable channel or vessels attempting to moor at the facilities. This rule is effective in the Federal Register from December 18, 2012 until January 17, 2013.

TEMPORARY RULE: The Coast Guard is establishing temporary safety zones around the following four vessels: the motor vessel Daniel Foss, IMO# 7638454, the motor vessel Washington, IMO# 8207733, the motor vessel George W, IMO# 9153329, and the motor vessel Connor Foss, Official# 1238813. These safety zones apply while these vessels are located on the waters of the Columbia and Willamette Rivers, and only while they are engaged in transferring persons to or from grain- shipment vessels, and/or assisting grain-shipment vessel movements. These safety zones extend to waters 50 yards ahead of these vessels and 50 yards abeam and astern of these vessels. These safety zones are being established to ensure that protest activities relating to a labor dispute do not create hazardous navigation conditions for any vessel or other river user in the vicinity of the safety zones. This rule is effective from December 18, 2012 until January 17, 2013.

TEMPORARY RULE: The Coast Guard is establishing a safety zone one mile north and one mile south of the East Jefferson Street Railroad Bridge, Mantua Creek, Paulsboro, New Jersey, due to a train derailment resulting in the release of hazardous materials into Mantua Creek and the surrounding air. This regulation is necessary to provide for the safety of life on the navigable waters of the Mantua Creek. This safety zone is intended to restrict vessel traffic movement to protect mariners from the hazards associated with an ongoing recovery operation to remove the derailed train cars and address hazardous material release. This rule is effective in the CFR from December 18, 2012 January 15, 2013.

PROPOSED RULE: The Coast Guard proposes the establishment of a Regulated Navigation Area (RNA) at the Youngs Bay PacifiCorp property in Astoria, OR. This RNA is necessary to preserve the integrity of an engineered sediment cap as part of an Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) required remedial action. This proposed RNA will do so by prohibiting activities that could disturb or damage the engineered sediment cap. Comments and related material must be received by the Coast Guard on or before March 18, 2013. (To submit comments, visit www.regulations.gov, reference docket number USCG–2012–0590.)

PROPOSED RULE: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA or Agency) is proposing numeric water quality criteria to protect ecological systems, aquatic life, and human health from nitrogen and phosphorus pollution in estuaries and coastal waters within the State of Florida not covered by EPA-approved State rulemaking, and south Florida inland flowing waters. These proposed criteria apply to Florida waters that are designated as Class I, Class II, or Class III waters and they are intended to protect these designated uses as well as implement for the purposes of the Clean Water Act the State’s narrative nutrient provision at Subsection 62–302.530(47)(b), Florida Administrative Code (F.A.C.), which provides that ‘‘[i]n no case shall nutrient concentrations of a body of water be altered so as to cause an imbalance in natural populations of aquatic flora or fauna.’’ Comments must be received on or before February 19, 2013. Because of EPA’s obligation to sign a notice of final rulemaking on or before September 30, 2013 under Consent Decree, the Agency regrets that it will be unable to grant any requests to extend this deadline. (To submit comments, visit www.regulations.gov, reference docket number EPA–HQ–OW–2010–0222.)

PROPOSED RULE: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA or Agency) is proposing a rule that addresses an order by the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida from February 18, 2012, which remanded to EPA two portions of its numeric water quality standards for nutrients in Florida that were promulgated and published on December 6, 2010. For this proposal, EPA is re-proposing the same numeric nutrient criteria for total nitrogen (TN) and total phosphorus (TP) for Florida streams not covered by EPA-approved State rulemaking, as included in EPA’s final rule, with further explanation of how the proposed numeric streams criteria will ensure the protection of the Florida’s Class I and III designated uses. EPA is also proposing default approaches available for use when modeling cannot be performed to derive downstream protection values (DPVs) that will ensure the attainment and maintenance of the numeric nutrient criteria that protect Florida’s lakes. The default approaches would be applicable to streams that flow into unimpaired lakes, but could also be used for streams that flow into impaired lakes. EPA will accept public comments on this proposed rule until February 1, 2013. Because of EPA’s obligation to sign a notice of final rulemaking on or before August 31, 2013 under Consent Decree, the Agency regrets that it will be unable to grant any requests to extend this deadline. (To submit comments, visit www.regulations.gov, reference docket number EPA–HQ–OW–2009–0596.)

PROPOSED RULE: These regulations provide comprehensive guidance for the award program authorized under Internal Revenue Code (Code) section 7623, as amended. The regulations provide guidance on submitting information regarding underpayments of tax or violations of the internal revenue laws and filing claims for award, as well as on the administrative proceedings applicable to claims for award under section 7623. The regulations also provide guidance on the determination and payment of awards, and provide definitions of key terms used in section 7623. Finally, the regulations confirm that the Director, officers, and employees of the Whistleblower Office are authorized to disclose return information to the extent necessary to conduct whistleblower administrative proceedings. The regulations provide needed guidance to the general public as well as officers and employees of the IRS who review claims under section 7623. This document also provides notice of a request for a public hearing on the proposed regulations. Electronic or written comments and requests for a public hearing must be received by February 19, 2013. (To submit comments, visit www.regulations.gov, reference docket number IRS REG–141066–09.)

 

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