Review of Floating Houses, 24485-24486 [2014-09707]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 83 / Wednesday, April 30, 2014 / Notices Dated: April 23, 2014. Kelly Keiderling, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Department of State. [FR Doc. 2014–09848 Filed 4–29–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4710–05–P 11 B, Knoxville, Tennessee 37902, (865) 632–6113. Dated: April 21, 2014. Joseph J. Hoagland, Vice President, Stakeholder Relations,Tennessee Valley Authority. [FR Doc. 2014–09654 Filed 4–29–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 8120–08–P TENNESSEE VALLEY AUTHORITY TENNESSEE VALLEY AUTHORITY Meeting of the Regional Energy Resource Council AGENCY: Review of Floating Houses Tennessee Valley Authority ACTION: The TVA Regional Energy Resource Council (RERC) will hold a meeting on Tuesday, May 13, 2014, regarding regional energy related issues in the Tennessee Valley. The RERC was established to advise TVA on its energy resource activities and the priorities among competing objectives and values. Notice of this meeting is given under the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), 5 U.S.C. App. 2. The meeting agenda includes the following: 1. Welcome and Introductions. 2. Recap of January 2014 meeting. 3. Presentations and discussion regarding TVA’s Integrated Resource Planning process and accomplishments to date. 4. Public Comments. 5. Council discussion regarding progress and development of the Integrated Resource Plan. The RERC will hear views of citizens by providing a public comment session. The public comment session will be held at 10:45 a.m. CDT, on May 13. Persons wishing to speak are requested to register at the door by 9:45 a.m. on Tuesday, May 13, and will be called on during the public comment period. Handout materials should be limited to one printed page. Written comments are also invited and may be mailed to the Regional Energy Resource Council, Tennessee Valley Authority, 400 West Summit Hill Drive, WT–11 B, Knoxville, Tennessee 37902. DATES: The meeting will be held on Tuesday, May 13, from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. CDT. ADDRESSES: The meeting will be held at the Nashville Airport Marriott, 600 Marriott Drive, Nashville, TN 37214 and will be open to the public. Anyone needing special access or accommodations should let the contact below know at least a week in advance. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Beth Keel, 400 West Summit Hill Drive, WT– mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:41 Apr 29, 2014 Jkt 232001 Tennessee Valley Authority. Notice of intent. AGENCY: (TVA). ACTION: Notice of Meeting. The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) is conducting a review of) the recent growth in the Tennessee River Watershed of floating houses and nonnavigable houseboats designed and used primarily for human habitation and potential management actions TVA may take in response to the proliferation of these structures. As part of the study, TVA intends to prepare an environmental assessment (EA) or environmental impact statement (EIS) to assess the impacts associated with TVA’s management and oversight of these structures on its reservoirs. TVA will use the environmental review process to learn the values and concerns of stakeholders; identify issues, trends, events and tradeoffs affecting TVA’s policies; formulate, evaluate and compare alternative management options; provide opportunities for public review and comment; and ensure that TVA’s evaluation of alternative management and policy strategies reflects a full range of stakeholder input. Public comment is invited concerning the scope of the review and environmental issues that should be addressed. This notice is provided in accordance with the Council on Environmental Quality’s regulations (40 CFR parts 1500 to 1508) and TVA’s procedures for implementing the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). SUMMARY: Comments must be received on or before July 29, 2014. To facilitate the scoping process, TVA will hold public scoping meetings in May and June 2014; see http://www.tva.gov/river/ floatinghouses.htm for the dates and locations of scoping meetings. TVA will provide additional opportunities for public involvement upon publication of the draft EA or EIS. ADDRESSES: Written comments should be sent to Matthew Higdon, NEPA Specialist, Tennessee Valley Authority, 400 West Summit Hill Drive (WT 11D), Knoxville, Tennessee 37902. Comments DATES: PO 00000 Frm 00115 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 24485 may also be entered online at the project Web site at http://www.tva.gov/river/ floatinghouses.htm or emailed to fh@ tva.gov. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For general information on the NEPA process, contact Matthew Higdon at the address above, by email at mshigdon@ tva.gov, or by phone at (865) 632–8051. For general information on the floating houses review, contact Robert Farrell by email at rgfarrell@tva.gov or by phone at (865) 632–3024. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: TVA is a corporate agency and instrumentality of the United States, established by an act of Congress in 1933, to foster the social and economic welfare of the people of the Tennessee Valley region and to promote the proper use and conservation of the region’s natural resources. One component of this mission is the operation of the TVA reservoir system to achieve a balance of benefits including energy production, navigation, flood control, recreation, and water supply. TVA operates nine mainstream Tennessee River dams and reservoirs and forty tributary dams and reservoirs in seven states. TVA has jurisdiction under Section 26a of the TVA Act, 16 U.S.C. 831y–1, to regulate obstructions that affect navigation, flood control, or public lands across, along, or in the Tennessee River or any of its tributaries. In particular, Section 26a of the TVA Act requires that TVA’s approval be obtained prior to the construction, operation, or maintenance of any dam, appurtenant works, or other obstruction affecting navigation, flood control, or public lands or reservations. Such obstructions may include boat docks, piers, boathouses, buoys, floats, boat launching ramps, fills, water intakes, devices for discharging effluents, bridges, aerial cables, culverts, pipelines, fish attractors, shoreline stabilization projects, channel excavations, and nonnavigable houseboats (18 CFR 1304.1). In addition to TVA’s Section 26a jurisdiction, and the permit conditions issued pursuant to such jurisdiction, TVA has conditions and covenants in approved land use agreements with commercial marina operators and land and shoreline policies that stipulate or restrict how TVA property and shoreline areas can be used. In recent years, several TVA reservoirs have experienced an accelerated growth of unpermitted, new floating houses designed and used primarily for human habitation at a fixed location rather than for recreational navigation and E:\FR\FM\30APN1.SGM 30APN1 24486 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 83 / Wednesday, April 30, 2014 / Notices transportation. This growth has generated additional sources of revenue for commercial marina operators. However, the proliferation of these structures also has resulted in unanticipated uses of the reservoir system and has raised concerns about impacts to public health and safety, the environment, and public recreation. mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Status of Floating Houses In 1977, TVA amended its Section 26a regulations at 18 CFR part 1304 to prohibit all new nonnavigable houseboats except for those in existence before February 15, 1978. TVA developed the following criteria in its regulations to distinguish between navigable vessels and prohibited, nonnavigable houseboats: 1. Built on a boat hull or on two or more pontoons; 2. Equipped with a motor and rudder controls located at a point on the houseboat from which there is forward visibility over a 180-degree range; 3. Compliant with all applicable State and Federal requirements relating to vessels; 4. Registered as a vessel in the State of principal use; and 5. State registration numbers clearly displayed on the vessel. In more recent years, however, several TVA reservoirs have experienced an accelerated growth in unpermitted new floating houses, which—like the nonnavigable houseboats addressed in 1977—are designed and used primarily for human habitation at a fixed location instead of recreational navigation and transportation. TVA estimates that approximately 1,900 fixed-location structures are floating on 13 TVA reservoirs. These structures are most prevalent on Norris and Fontana Reservoirs, with approximately 900 on Norris Reservoir and approximately 500 on Fontana Reservoir. While many owners may consider their structures to comply with the five criteria previously listed, the structures neither resemble nor have the performance characteristics of navigable boats. Rather, they appear to be designed and used primarily for human habitation and in bulk would function as and resemble floating subdivisions. Proposed Issues To Be Addressed TVA anticipates that the major issues it will examine in the EA or EIS will include water quality; sewage and waste water discharge; solid waste; electrical systems safety; structural integrity and safety; size of structures and visual impacts; use of public waters for private, habitable use; anchorage and mooring practices; mooring structures VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:41 Apr 29, 2014 Jkt 232001 outside approved marina harbor limits; violation of conditions in permits approved by TVA under Section 26a of the TVA Act and conditions and covenants in land use agreements and deeds; abandonment of derelict structures; socioeconomic impacts; and the suitability and effectiveness of current TVA standards, regulations, and policies. This list of issues is preliminary and is intended to facilitate public comment on the scope of the EA or EIS. TVA invites suggestions concerning the list of issues it should address. Scoping Process Frm 00116 Fmt 4703 Brenda E. Brickhouse, Vice President, Environment. [FR Doc. 2014–09707 Filed 4–29–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 8120–01–P OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES TRADE REPRESENTATIVE Notice With Respect to List of Countries Denying Fair Market Opportunities for Government-Funded Airport Construction Projects Office of the United States Trade Representative. AGENCY: Scoping is integral to the NEPA process because it provides a forum to ensure that (1) issues are identified early and properly studied; (2) issues of little significance do not consume substantial time and effort; (3) the draft EA or EIS is thorough and balanced; and (4) delays caused by an inadequate NEPA review are avoided. With the help of the public, TVA will identify a future management strategy that can best encourage safe practices and minimize negative environmental and socioeconomic impacts. Management alternatives will be considered that may result in proposed rules or revisions to the current regulations to clarify definitions, set minimum standards for safety and environmental protection, and if appropriate, incorporate enforcement mechanisms for noncompliance. TVA invites members of the public as well as Federal, state, and local agencies and Native American tribes to comment on the scope of the EA or EIS. Comments on the scope should be submitted no later than the date given under the DATES section of this notice. Any comments received, including names and addresses, will become part of the administrative record and will be available for public inspection. Public meetings are scheduled to provide information about the review of floating houses, listen to stakeholders, discuss options, and determine the scope of potential issues. TVA will analyze issues raised during the scoping period and determine whether an EIS or EA is appropriate. A draft of the EA or EIS will be provided for public review and comment. TVA will notify the public of the availability of the draft EA or EIS, will solicit comments, and hold public meetings to address the review. TVA expects to release the draft EA or EIS in early 2015. The final EA or EIS along with the documentation of TVA’s decision will also be issued in 2015. PO 00000 Authority: 40 CFR 1501.7. Sfmt 4703 ACTION: Notice. Pursuant to section 533 of the Airport and Airway Improvement Act of 1982, as amended (49 U.S.C. 50104), the United States Trade Representative (USTR) has determined not to list any countries as denying fair market opportunities for U.S. products, suppliers, or bidders in foreign government-funded airport construction projects. SUMMARY: DATES: Effective Date: April 30, 2014. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Scott Pietan, International Procurement Negotiator, Office of the United States Trade Representative, (202) 395–9646, or Arthur Tsao, Assistant General Counsel, Office of the United States Trade Representative, (202) 395–6987. Section 533 of the Airport and Airway Improvement Act of 1982, as amended by section 115 of the Airport and Airway Safety and Capacity Expansion Act of 1987, Public Law 100–223 (codified at 49 U.S.C. 50104) (‘‘the Act’’), requires the USTR to decide whether any foreign country has denied fair market opportunities to U.S. products, suppliers, or bidders in connection with airport construction projects of $500,000 or more that are funded in whole or in part by the government of such country. The list of such countries must be published in the Federal Register. The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative has not received any complaints or other information that indicates that U.S. products, suppliers, or bidders are being denied fair market opportunities in such airport construction projects. As a consequence, for purposes of the Act, the USTR has decided not to list any countries as denying fair market opportunities for U.S. products, suppliers, or bidders in SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: E:\FR\FM\30APN1.SGM 30APN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 83 (Wednesday, April 30, 2014)]
[Notices]
[Pages 24485-24486]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-09707]


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TENNESSEE VALLEY AUTHORITY


Review of Floating Houses

AGENCY: Tennessee Valley Authority.

ACTION: Notice of intent.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) is conducting a review 
of) the recent growth in the Tennessee River Watershed of floating 
houses and nonnavigable houseboats designed and used primarily for 
human habitation and potential management actions TVA may take in 
response to the proliferation of these structures. As part of the 
study, TVA intends to prepare an environmental assessment (EA) or 
environmental impact statement (EIS) to assess the impacts associated 
with TVA's management and oversight of these structures on its 
reservoirs. TVA will use the environmental review process to learn the 
values and concerns of stakeholders; identify issues, trends, events 
and tradeoffs affecting TVA's policies; formulate, evaluate and compare 
alternative management options; provide opportunities for public review 
and comment; and ensure that TVA's evaluation of alternative management 
and policy strategies reflects a full range of stakeholder input. 
Public comment is invited concerning the scope of the review and 
environmental issues that should be addressed. This notice is provided 
in accordance with the Council on Environmental Quality's regulations 
(40 CFR parts 1500 to 1508) and TVA's procedures for implementing the 
National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).

DATES: Comments must be received on or before July 29, 2014. To 
facilitate the scoping process, TVA will hold public scoping meetings 
in May and June 2014; see http://www.tva.gov/river/floatinghouses.htm 
for the dates and locations of scoping meetings. TVA will provide 
additional opportunities for public involvement upon publication of the 
draft EA or EIS.

ADDRESSES: Written comments should be sent to Matthew Higdon, NEPA 
Specialist, Tennessee Valley Authority, 400 West Summit Hill Drive (WT 
11D), Knoxville, Tennessee 37902. Comments may also be entered online 
at the project Web site at http://www.tva.gov/river/floatinghouses.htm 
or emailed to fh@tva.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For general information on the NEPA 
process, contact Matthew Higdon at the address above, by email at 
mshigdon@tva.gov, or by phone at (865) 632-8051. For general 
information on the floating houses review, contact Robert Farrell by 
email at rgfarrell@tva.gov or by phone at (865) 632-3024.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: TVA is a corporate agency and 
instrumentality of the United States, established by an act of Congress 
in 1933, to foster the social and economic welfare of the people of the 
Tennessee Valley region and to promote the proper use and conservation 
of the region's natural resources. One component of this mission is the 
operation of the TVA reservoir system to achieve a balance of benefits 
including energy production, navigation, flood control, recreation, and 
water supply. TVA operates nine mainstream Tennessee River dams and 
reservoirs and forty tributary dams and reservoirs in seven states.
    TVA has jurisdiction under Section 26a of the TVA Act, 16 U.S.C. 
831y-1, to regulate obstructions that affect navigation, flood control, 
or public lands across, along, or in the Tennessee River or any of its 
tributaries. In particular, Section 26a of the TVA Act requires that 
TVA's approval be obtained prior to the construction, operation, or 
maintenance of any dam, appurtenant works, or other obstruction 
affecting navigation, flood control, or public lands or reservations. 
Such obstructions may include boat docks, piers, boathouses, buoys, 
floats, boat launching ramps, fills, water intakes, devices for 
discharging effluents, bridges, aerial cables, culverts, pipelines, 
fish attractors, shoreline stabilization projects, channel excavations, 
and nonnavigable houseboats (18 CFR 1304.1). In addition to TVA's 
Section 26a jurisdiction, and the permit conditions issued pursuant to 
such jurisdiction, TVA has conditions and covenants in approved land 
use agreements with commercial marina operators and land and shoreline 
policies that stipulate or restrict how TVA property and shoreline 
areas can be used.
    In recent years, several TVA reservoirs have experienced an 
accelerated growth of unpermitted, new floating houses designed and 
used primarily for human habitation at a fixed location rather than for 
recreational navigation and

[[Page 24486]]

transportation. This growth has generated additional sources of revenue 
for commercial marina operators. However, the proliferation of these 
structures also has resulted in unanticipated uses of the reservoir 
system and has raised concerns about impacts to public health and 
safety, the environment, and public recreation.

Status of Floating Houses

    In 1977, TVA amended its Section 26a regulations at 18 CFR part 
1304 to prohibit all new nonnavigable houseboats except for those in 
existence before February 15, 1978. TVA developed the following 
criteria in its regulations to distinguish between navigable vessels 
and prohibited, nonnavigable houseboats:
    1. Built on a boat hull or on two or more pontoons;
    2. Equipped with a motor and rudder controls located at a point on 
the houseboat from which there is forward visibility over a 180-degree 
range;
    3. Compliant with all applicable State and Federal requirements 
relating to vessels;
    4. Registered as a vessel in the State of principal use; and
    5. State registration numbers clearly displayed on the vessel.

In more recent years, however, several TVA reservoirs have experienced 
an accelerated growth in unpermitted new floating houses, which--like 
the nonnavigable houseboats addressed in 1977--are designed and used 
primarily for human habitation at a fixed location instead of 
recreational navigation and transportation. TVA estimates that 
approximately 1,900 fixed-location structures are floating on 13 TVA 
reservoirs. These structures are most prevalent on Norris and Fontana 
Reservoirs, with approximately 900 on Norris Reservoir and 
approximately 500 on Fontana Reservoir. While many owners may consider 
their structures to comply with the five criteria previously listed, 
the structures neither resemble nor have the performance 
characteristics of navigable boats. Rather, they appear to be designed 
and used primarily for human habitation and in bulk would function as 
and resemble floating subdivisions.

Proposed Issues To Be Addressed

    TVA anticipates that the major issues it will examine in the EA or 
EIS will include water quality; sewage and waste water discharge; solid 
waste; electrical systems safety; structural integrity and safety; size 
of structures and visual impacts; use of public waters for private, 
habitable use; anchorage and mooring practices; mooring structures 
outside approved marina harbor limits; violation of conditions in 
permits approved by TVA under Section 26a of the TVA Act and conditions 
and covenants in land use agreements and deeds; abandonment of derelict 
structures; socioeconomic impacts; and the suitability and 
effectiveness of current TVA standards, regulations, and policies. This 
list of issues is preliminary and is intended to facilitate public 
comment on the scope of the EA or EIS. TVA invites suggestions 
concerning the list of issues it should address.

Scoping Process

    Scoping is integral to the NEPA process because it provides a forum 
to ensure that (1) issues are identified early and properly studied; 
(2) issues of little significance do not consume substantial time and 
effort; (3) the draft EA or EIS is thorough and balanced; and (4) 
delays caused by an inadequate NEPA review are avoided. With the help 
of the public, TVA will identify a future management strategy that can 
best encourage safe practices and minimize negative environmental and 
socioeconomic impacts. Management alternatives will be considered that 
may result in proposed rules or revisions to the current regulations to 
clarify definitions, set minimum standards for safety and environmental 
protection, and if appropriate, incorporate enforcement mechanisms for 
noncompliance.
    TVA invites members of the public as well as Federal, state, and 
local agencies and Native American tribes to comment on the scope of 
the EA or EIS. Comments on the scope should be submitted no later than 
the date given under the DATES section of this notice. Any comments 
received, including names and addresses, will become part of the 
administrative record and will be available for public inspection.
    Public meetings are scheduled to provide information about the 
review of floating houses, listen to stakeholders, discuss options, and 
determine the scope of potential issues. TVA will analyze issues raised 
during the scoping period and determine whether an EIS or EA is 
appropriate. A draft of the EA or EIS will be provided for public 
review and comment. TVA will notify the public of the availability of 
the draft EA or EIS, will solicit comments, and hold public meetings to 
address the review. TVA expects to release the draft EA or EIS in early 
2015. The final EA or EIS along with the documentation of TVA's 
decision will also be issued in 2015.

    Authority:  40 CFR 1501.7.

Brenda E. Brickhouse,
Vice President, Environment.
[FR Doc. 2014-09707 Filed 4-29-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 8120-01-P