Voluntary Intermodal Sealift Agreement Open Season, 50052-50054 [2016-17888]

Download as PDF 50052 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 146 / Friday, July 29, 2016 / Notices c. Standard Assurances The applicant must assure it will comply with all applicable Federal statutes, regulations, executive orders, FTA circulars, and other Federal administrative requirements in carrying out any project supported by the FTA grant. The applicant must acknowledge that it is under a continuing obligation to comply with the terms and conditions of the grant agreement issued for its project with FTA. The applicant understands that Federal laws, regulations, policies, and administrative practices might be modified from time to time and may affect the implementation of the project. The applicant must agree that the most recent Federal requirements will apply to the project, unless FTA issues a written determination otherwise. The applicant must submit the Certifications and Assurances before receiving a grant if it does not have current certifications on file. d. Reporting Post-award reporting requirements include submission of Federal Financial Reports and Milestone Progress Reports in TrAMS. e. Technical Assistance and Other Program Information This program is not subject to Executive Order 12372, ‘‘Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs.’’ FRA will consider applications for funding only from eligible recipients as explained in Section 3. asabaliauskas on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES 7. Federal Awarding Agency Contacts If you have a PTC technical project related question, you may contact Dr. Mark Hartong, Senior Scientific Technical Advisor (phone: (202) 493– 1332; email: mark.hartong@dot.gov), or Mr. Devin Rouse, Program Manager (phone: (202) 493–6185, email: devin.rouse@dot.gov.) Grant application submission and processing questions should be addressed to Ms. Amy Houser, Office of Program Delivery, Federal Railroad Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Room W36– 412, Washington, DC 20590; email: amy.houser@dot.gov. For questions relating to grant requirements, please contact Eric Hu, Program Manager, Urban Programs (phone: (202) 366–0870, email eric.hu@ dot.gov). FTA grantees may also contact their FTA regional office. Contact for FTA’s regional offices can be found on FTA’s Web site at: https:// www.transit.dot.gov/about/regionaloffices/regional-offices. VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:42 Jul 28, 2016 Jkt 238001 Information Collection: The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approved the information collection associated with the PTC Grants Program. The approval number for this collection of information is OMB No. 2130–0587. Issued in Washington, DC on July 21, 2016. Carolyn Flowers, Acting Administrator, FTA. Sarah E. Feinberg, Administrator, FRA. [FR Doc. 2016–17943 Filed 7–28–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–06–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Maritime Administration Voluntary Intermodal Sealift Agreement Open Season Maritime Administration, Department of Transportation. ACTION: Notice of open season for enrollment in the VISA program. AGENCY: The Maritime Administration (MARAD) announces that the open season for Fiscal Year 2017 applications for participation in the Voluntary Intermodal Sealift Agreement (VISA) program will run for 30 days beginning today and ending August 29, 2016. The purpose of this notice is to invite interested, qualified U.S.-flag vessel operators that are not currently enrolled in the VISA program to apply. This is the only planned enrollment period for carriers to join the VISA program and derive benefits for Department of Defense (DOD) peacetime contracts initiated during the period from October 1, 2016, through September 30, 2017. Any U.S.-flag vessel operator organized under the laws of a state of the United States, or the District of Columbia, who is able and willing to commit militarily useful sealift assets and assume the related consequential risks of commercial disruption, may be eligible to participate in the VISA program. The mission of VISA is to provide commercial sealift and intermodal shipping services and systems, including access to vessels, vessel space, intermodal systems and equipment, terminal facilities, and related management services, to the Department of Defense (DOD), as necessary, to meet national defense contingency requirements or national emergencies. Carriers enrolled in the VISA program provide DOD with assured access to such services during contingencies. In return for their VISA commitment, DOD gives VISA SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00131 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 participants priority for carriage of peacetime cargos. DATES: VISA Program applications must be received on or before August 29, 2016. ADDRESSES: Submit applications and questions related to this notice to William G. McDonald, Director, Office of Sealift Support, U.S. Department of Transportation, Maritime Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: William G. McDonald, Director, Office of Sealift Support, U.S. Department of Transportation, Maritime Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590. Telephone (202) 366–0688; Fax (202) 366–5904, electronic mail to william.g.mcdonald@dot.gov or visit http://www.marad.dot.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The VISA program was established pursuant to Section 708 of the Defense Production Act of 1950, as amended (DPA). The VISA program was created to provide for voluntary agreements for emergency preparedness programs. Pursuant to the DPA, voluntary agreements for preparedness programs, including the VISA program expire five (5) years after the date they became effective. The VISA program is open to U.S.-flag vessel operators of oceangoing militarily useful vessels. An operator is defined as an owner or bareboat charterer of a vessel. Operators include vessel owners and bareboat charter operators if satisfactory signed agreements are in place committing the assets of the owner to VISA. Voyage and space charterers are not considered U.S.-flag vessel operators for purposes of VISA eligibility. VISA Program The VISA program provides for the staged, time-phased availability of participants’ shipping services/systems through pre-negotiated contracts between the Government and participants. Such arrangements are jointly planned with the MARAD, the United States Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM), and participants in peacetime to allow effective and best valued use of commercial sealift capacity, provide DOD assured contingency access, and to minimize commercial disruption. Throughout the activation of any stages of VISA, DOD may utilize voluntary commitment of sealift capacity or systems. Requests for volunteer capacity will be extended simultaneously to both participants and other carriers. First priority for E:\FR\FM\29JYN1.SGM 29JYN1 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 146 / Friday, July 29, 2016 / Notices utilization will be given to participants who have signed Stage I and/or Stage II contracts and are capable of meeting the operational requirements. Participants providing voluntary capacity may request USTRANSCOM to activate their pre-negotiated contingency contracts. To the maximum extent possible, USTRANSCOM, where appropriate, shall support such requests. Volunteered capacity will be credited against participants’ staged commitments, in the event such stages are subsequently activated. There are three time-phased stages in the event of VISA activation. VISA Stages I and II provide for prenegotiated contracts between DOD and participants to provide sealift capacity to meet all projected DOD contingency requirements. These contracts are executed in accordance with approved DOD contracting methodologies. VISA Stage III provides for additional capacity to DOD when Stages I and II commitments or volunteered capacity are insufficient to meet contingency requirements, and adequate shipping services from non-participants are not available through established DOD contracting practices or U.S. Government treaty agreements. asabaliauskas on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES Exceptions to This Open Season The only exception to this open season period for VISA enrollment will be for a non-VISA carrier that reflags a vessel into U.S. registry. That carrier may submit an application to participate in the VISA program at any time upon completion of reflagging. Advantages of Peacetime Participation In return for their VISA commitment, DOD awards peacetime cargo contracts to VISA participants on a priority basis. Award of DOD cargoes to meet DOD peacetime and contingency requirements is made on the basis of the following priorities: U.S.-flag vessel capacity operated by VISA participants and U.S.-flag Vessel Sharing Agreement (VSA) capacity held by VISA participants; U.S.-flag vessel capacity operated by non-participants; Combination U.S.-flag/foreign-flag vessel capacity operated by VISA participants, and combination U.S.-flag/ foreign-flag VSA capacity held by VISA participants; Combination U.S.-flag/ foreign-flag vessel capacity operated by non-participants; U.S.-owned or operated foreign-flag vessel capacity and VSA capacity held by VISA participants; U.S.-owned or operated foreign-flag vessel capacity and VSA capacity held by non-participants; and Foreign-owned or operated foreign-flag vessel capacity of non-participants. VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:42 Jul 28, 2016 Jkt 238001 50053 Participation Vessel Position Reporting Applicants must provide satisfactory evidence that the vessels being committed to the VISA program are operational and are intended to be operated by the applicant in the carriage of commercial or government preference cargoes. Operator is defined as an ocean common carrier or contract carrier that owns, controls or manages vessels by which ocean transportation is provided. While vessel brokers, freight forwarders, and agents play an important role as a conduit to locate and secure appropriate vessels for the carriage of DOD cargo, they are not eligible to participate in the VISA program due to lack of requisite vessel ownership or operation. If VISA applicants have the capability to track their vessels, they must include the tracking system used in their VISA application. Such applicants are required to provide MARAD access to their vessel tracking systems upon approval of their VISA application. If VISA applicants do not have a tracking system, they must indicate this in their VISA application. The VISA program requires enrolled ships to comply with 46 CFR part 307, Establishment of Mandatory Position Reporting System for Vessels. Commitment Any U.S.-flag vessel operator desiring to receive priority consideration for DOD peacetime contracts must enroll their entire U.S.-flag militarily useful capacity and associated services in the VISA program and commit no less than 50 percent of its total U.S.-flag capacity in Stage III of the VISA program. Participants operating vessels in international trade may receive top tier consideration in the award of DOD peacetime contracts by committing the minimum percentages of capacity to all three stages of VISA (Stage I—15%, Stage II—40%, Stage III—50%) or bottom tier consideration by committing the minimum percentage (50%) of capacity to only Stage III of VISA. USTRANSCOM and MARAD will coordinate to ensure that the amount of sealift assets committed to Stages I and II will not have an adverse national economic impact. To minimize domestic commercial disruption, participants operating vessels exclusively in the domestic coastwise trades (Jones Act) are not required to commit the capacity of those U.S. domestic trading vessels to VISA Stages I and II but will be required to commit 50% of that capacity in Stage III. Overall VISA commitment requirements are based on annual enrollment. In order to protect a U.S.-flag vessel operator’s market share during contingency activation, VISA allows participants to join with other vessel operators in Carrier Coordination Agreements (CCAs) to satisfy commercial or DOD requirements. VISA provides a defense against antitrust laws in accordance with the DPA. CCAs must be submitted to the MARAD for coordination with the Department of Justice for approval, before they can be utilized. PO 00000 Frm 00132 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Compensation In addition to receiving priority in the award of DOD peacetime cargo, a participant will receive compensation during contingency activation for that capacity activated under Stage I, II and III. The amount of compensation will depend on the Stage at which capacity is activated. During enrollment, each participant must select one of several compensation methodologies. The compensation methodology selection will be completed with USTRANSCOM resulting in prices in contingency contracts between DOD and the participant. Participants providing voluntary capacity may request USTRANSCOM to activate their prenegotiated contingency contracts; to the maximum extent possible, USTRANSCOM, where appropriate, will support such requests. Volunteered capacity will be credited against participants’ staged commitments, in the event such stages are subsequently activated. Security Clearances All VISA applicants accepted for participation not having a Facility Security Clearance (FCL) will be required to pursue the facility clearance process with the Defense Security Service (DSS) within 45 days. If the accepted applicant does not have a facility clearance, MARAD will initiate the clearance process with DSS. Participants must have a FCL and a key representative of the company must have an individual security clearance, at a minimum of SECRET level, in order for them to participate in the VISA Joint Planning Advisory Group (JPAG) meetings and to meet VISA contingency contract obligations. One of the objectives of the JPAG is to provide the USTRANSCOM, MARAD and VISA participants with a planning forum to analyze DOD contingency sealift/ intermodal service and resource requirements against industry commitments. JPAG meetings are often E:\FR\FM\29JYN1.SGM 29JYN1 50054 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 146 / Friday, July 29, 2016 / Notices asabaliauskas on DSK3SPTVN1PROD with NOTICES SECRET classified sessions. Eligibility for VISA participation will be terminated if a key representative does not have a clearance, an applicant is rejected for a facility clearance by DSS, or the applicant fails to complete the clearance process in a timely manner. Application for VISA Participation New applicants may apply to participate by obtaining a VISA application package (Form MA–1020 (OMB Approval No. 2133–0532)) from the Director, Office of Sealift Support. Form MA–1020 includes instructions for completing and submitting the application, blank VISA Application forms and a request for information regarding the operations and U.S. citizenship of the applicant company. A copy of the VISA document as published in the Federal Register on October 29, 2014 will also be provided with the package. This information is needed in order to assist MARAD in making a determination of the applicant’s eligibility. An applicant company must provide an affidavit that demonstrates that the company is qualified to document a vessel under 46 U.S.C. 12103, and that it owns, or bareboat charters and controls, oceangoing, militarily useful vessel(s) for purposes of committing assets to the VISA program. New VISA applicants are required to submit their applications for the VISA program as described in this Notice no later than 30 days after the date of publication of this Federal Register notice. Applicants must provide the following: U.S. citizenship documentation; Copy of their Articles of Incorporation and/or By Laws; Copies of loadline documents from a recognized classification society to validate oceangoing vessel capability; U.S. Coast Guard Certificates of Documentation for all vessels in their fleet; Copy of Bareboat Charters, if applicable, valid through the period of enrollment, which state that the owner will not interfere with the charterer’s obligation to commit chartered vessel(s) to the VISA program for the duration of the charter; and Copy of Time Charters, valid through the period of enrollment for tug services if sufficient tug service is not owned or bareboat chartered by the barge operator. Tug/Barge operators must provide evidence to MARAD that tug service of sufficient horsepower will be available for all barges enrolled in the VISA program. Once MARAD has reviewed the application and determined VISA eligibility, MARAD will sign the VISA application document which completes the eligibility phase of the VISA VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:42 Jul 28, 2016 Jkt 238001 enrollment process. Approved VISA participants will be responsible for ensuring that information submitted with their application remains up to date after the approval process. If charter agreements are due to expire, participants must provide MARAD with charters that extend the charter duration for another 12 months or longer. After VISA eligibility is approved by MARAD, approved applicants are required to execute a VISA Contingency Contract with the USTRANSCOM in a timely manner. The USTRANSCOM VISA Contingency Contract will specify the following: Participant’s Stage III commitment, and appropriate Stage I and/or II commitments for the period October 1, 2016 through September 30, 2017; Drytime Contingency terms and conditions; and Liner Contingency terms and conditions, if applicable. If any change is expected in the Contractor’s U.S. flag fleet during the period of the applicable VISA Contingency Contract, a minimum 30day notice shall be provided to MARAD and USTRANSCOM identifying the change and to alter the VISA Capacity Commitment indicated on Attachment 1 of the VISA Contingency Contract. Execution of the USTRANSCOM VISA Contingency Contract completes the enrollment process and establishes the approved applicant as a VISA Participant. The Maritime Administration reserves the right to revalidate all eligibility requirements without notice. USTRANSCOM reserves the right to revalidate eligibility for VISA priority for DOD business at any time without notice. Authority: 49 CFR Sections 1.92 and 1.93. * * * * * By Order of the Maritime Administrator. Dated: July 25, 2016. T. Mitchell Hudson, Jr., Secretary, Maritime Administration. [FR Doc. 2016–17888 Filed 7–28–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910–81–P DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION National Highway Traffic Safety Administration [Docket No. NHTSA—2016–0080] Notice of Buy America Waiver National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Department of Transportation (DOT). ACTION: Notice of Buy America waiver. AGENCY: This notice provides NHTSA’s finding with respect to a request to waive the requirements of SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00133 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Buy America from the New Hampshire Office of Highway Safety (New Hampshire). NHTSA finds that a nonavailability waiver of the Buy America requirement is appropriate for the purchase of five (5) Sokia SX Robotic total stations using Federal highway traffic safety grant funds because there are no suitable products produced in the United States. DATES: The effective date of this waiver is August 15, 2016. Written comments regarding this notice may be submitted to NHTSA and must be received on or before: August 15, 2016. ADDRESSES: Written comments may be submitted using any one of the following methods: • Mail: Docket Management Facility, M–30, U.S. Department of Transportation, West Building, Ground Floor, Rm. W12–140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590. • Fax: Written comments may be faxed to (202) 493–2251. • Internet: To submit comments electronically, go to the Federal regulations Web site at http:// www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments. • Hand Delivery: West Building Ground Floor, Room W12–140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. Instructions: All comments submitted in relation to this waiver must include the agency name and docket number. Please note that all comments received will be posted without change to http:// www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided. You may also call the Docket at 202–366– 9324. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For program issues, contact Barbara Sauers, Office of Regional Operations and Program Delivery, NHTSA (phone: 202– 366–0144). For legal issues, contact Andrew DiMarsico, Office of Chief Counsel, NHTSA (phone: 202–366– 5263). You may send mail to these officials at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This notice provides NHTSA’s finding that a waiver of the Buy America requirement, 23 U.S.C. 313, is appropriate for New Hampshire to purchase five (5) Sokia SX Robotic total stations. The cost for all five stations amount to $135,000 using grant funds authorized under 23 U.S.C. 402 and 405(d). Section 402 funds are available for use by state highway safety programs that, among other things, reduce or prevent injuries and deaths resulting from speeding motor vehicles, E:\FR\FM\29JYN1.SGM 29JYN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 146 (Friday, July 29, 2016)]
[Notices]
[Pages 50052-50054]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-17888]


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

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Maritime Administration


Voluntary Intermodal Sealift Agreement Open Season

AGENCY: Maritime Administration, Department of Transportation.

ACTION: Notice of open season for enrollment in the VISA program.

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

SUMMARY: The Maritime Administration (MARAD) announces that the open 
season for Fiscal Year 2017 applications for participation in the 
Voluntary Intermodal Sealift Agreement (VISA) program will run for 30 
days beginning today and ending August 29, 2016. The purpose of this 
notice is to invite interested, qualified U.S.-flag vessel operators 
that are not currently enrolled in the VISA program to apply. This is 
the only planned enrollment period for carriers to join the VISA 
program and derive benefits for Department of Defense (DOD) peacetime 
contracts initiated during the period from October 1, 2016, through 
September 30, 2017.
    Any U.S.-flag vessel operator organized under the laws of a state 
of the United States, or the District of Columbia, who is able and 
willing to commit militarily useful sealift assets and assume the 
related consequential risks of commercial disruption, may be eligible 
to participate in the VISA program.
    The mission of VISA is to provide commercial sealift and intermodal 
shipping services and systems, including access to vessels, vessel 
space, intermodal systems and equipment, terminal facilities, and 
related management services, to the Department of Defense (DOD), as 
necessary, to meet national defense contingency requirements or 
national emergencies. Carriers enrolled in the VISA program provide DOD 
with assured access to such services during contingencies. In return 
for their VISA commitment, DOD gives VISA participants priority for 
carriage of peacetime cargos.

DATES: VISA Program applications must be received on or before August 
29, 2016.

ADDRESSES: Submit applications and questions related to this notice to 
William G. McDonald, Director, Office of Sealift Support, U.S. 
Department of Transportation, Maritime Administration, 1200 New Jersey 
Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: William G. McDonald, Director, Office 
of Sealift Support, U.S. Department of Transportation, Maritime 
Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590. 
Telephone (202) 366-0688; Fax (202) 366-5904, electronic mail to 
william.g.mcdonald@dot.gov or visit http://www.marad.dot.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The VISA program was established pursuant to 
Section 708 of the Defense Production Act of 1950, as amended (DPA). 
The VISA program was created to provide for voluntary agreements for 
emergency preparedness programs. Pursuant to the DPA, voluntary 
agreements for preparedness programs, including the VISA program expire 
five (5) years after the date they became effective.
    The VISA program is open to U.S.-flag vessel operators of 
oceangoing militarily useful vessels. An operator is defined as an 
owner or bareboat charterer of a vessel. Operators include vessel 
owners and bareboat charter operators if satisfactory signed agreements 
are in place committing the assets of the owner to VISA. Voyage and 
space charterers are not considered U.S.-flag vessel operators for 
purposes of VISA eligibility.

VISA Program

    The VISA program provides for the staged, time-phased availability 
of participants' shipping services/systems through pre-negotiated 
contracts between the Government and participants. Such arrangements 
are jointly planned with the MARAD, the United States Transportation 
Command (USTRANSCOM), and participants in peacetime to allow effective 
and best valued use of commercial sealift capacity, provide DOD assured 
contingency access, and to minimize commercial disruption.
    Throughout the activation of any stages of VISA, DOD may utilize 
voluntary commitment of sealift capacity or systems. Requests for 
volunteer capacity will be extended simultaneously to both participants 
and other carriers. First priority for

[[Page 50053]]

utilization will be given to participants who have signed Stage I and/
or Stage II contracts and are capable of meeting the operational 
requirements. Participants providing voluntary capacity may request 
USTRANSCOM to activate their pre-negotiated contingency contracts. To 
the maximum extent possible, USTRANSCOM, where appropriate, shall 
support such requests. Volunteered capacity will be credited against 
participants' staged commitments, in the event such stages are 
subsequently activated.
    There are three time-phased stages in the event of VISA activation. 
VISA Stages I and II provide for pre-negotiated contracts between DOD 
and participants to provide sealift capacity to meet all projected DOD 
contingency requirements. These contracts are executed in accordance 
with approved DOD contracting methodologies. VISA Stage III provides 
for additional capacity to DOD when Stages I and II commitments or 
volunteered capacity are insufficient to meet contingency requirements, 
and adequate shipping services from non-participants are not available 
through established DOD contracting practices or U.S. Government treaty 
agreements.

Exceptions to This Open Season

    The only exception to this open season period for VISA enrollment 
will be for a non-VISA carrier that reflags a vessel into U.S. 
registry. That carrier may submit an application to participate in the 
VISA program at any time upon completion of reflagging.

Advantages of Peacetime Participation

    In return for their VISA commitment, DOD awards peacetime cargo 
contracts to VISA participants on a priority basis. Award of DOD 
cargoes to meet DOD peacetime and contingency requirements is made on 
the basis of the following priorities: U.S.-flag vessel capacity 
operated by VISA participants and U.S.-flag Vessel Sharing Agreement 
(VSA) capacity held by VISA participants; U.S.-flag vessel capacity 
operated by non-participants; Combination U.S.-flag/foreign-flag vessel 
capacity operated by VISA participants, and combination U.S.-flag/
foreign-flag VSA capacity held by VISA participants; Combination U.S.-
flag/foreign-flag vessel capacity operated by non-participants; U.S.-
owned or operated foreign-flag vessel capacity and VSA capacity held by 
VISA participants; U.S.-owned or operated foreign-flag vessel capacity 
and VSA capacity held by non-participants; and Foreign-owned or 
operated foreign-flag vessel capacity of non-participants.

Participation

    Applicants must provide satisfactory evidence that the vessels 
being committed to the VISA program are operational and are intended to 
be operated by the applicant in the carriage of commercial or 
government preference cargoes. Operator is defined as an ocean common 
carrier or contract carrier that owns, controls or manages vessels by 
which ocean transportation is provided. While vessel brokers, freight 
forwarders, and agents play an important role as a conduit to locate 
and secure appropriate vessels for the carriage of DOD cargo, they are 
not eligible to participate in the VISA program due to lack of 
requisite vessel ownership or operation.

Commitment

    Any U.S.-flag vessel operator desiring to receive priority 
consideration for DOD peacetime contracts must enroll their entire 
U.S.-flag militarily useful capacity and associated services in the 
VISA program and commit no less than 50 percent of its total U.S.-flag 
capacity in Stage III of the VISA program. Participants operating 
vessels in international trade may receive top tier consideration in 
the award of DOD peacetime contracts by committing the minimum 
percentages of capacity to all three stages of VISA (Stage I--15%, 
Stage II--40%, Stage III--50%) or bottom tier consideration by 
committing the minimum percentage (50%) of capacity to only Stage III 
of VISA. USTRANSCOM and MARAD will coordinate to ensure that the amount 
of sealift assets committed to Stages I and II will not have an adverse 
national economic impact. To minimize domestic commercial disruption, 
participants operating vessels exclusively in the domestic coastwise 
trades (Jones Act) are not required to commit the capacity of those 
U.S. domestic trading vessels to VISA Stages I and II but will be 
required to commit 50% of that capacity in Stage III. Overall VISA 
commitment requirements are based on annual enrollment.
    In order to protect a U.S.-flag vessel operator's market share 
during contingency activation, VISA allows participants to join with 
other vessel operators in Carrier Coordination Agreements (CCAs) to 
satisfy commercial or DOD requirements. VISA provides a defense against 
antitrust laws in accordance with the DPA. CCAs must be submitted to 
the MARAD for coordination with the Department of Justice for approval, 
before they can be utilized.

Vessel Position Reporting

    If VISA applicants have the capability to track their vessels, they 
must include the tracking system used in their VISA application. Such 
applicants are required to provide MARAD access to their vessel 
tracking systems upon approval of their VISA application. If VISA 
applicants do not have a tracking system, they must indicate this in 
their VISA application. The VISA program requires enrolled ships to 
comply with 46 CFR part 307, Establishment of Mandatory Position 
Reporting System for Vessels.

Compensation

    In addition to receiving priority in the award of DOD peacetime 
cargo, a participant will receive compensation during contingency 
activation for that capacity activated under Stage I, II and III. The 
amount of compensation will depend on the Stage at which capacity is 
activated. During enrollment, each participant must select one of 
several compensation methodologies. The compensation methodology 
selection will be completed with USTRANSCOM resulting in prices in 
contingency contracts between DOD and the participant. Participants 
providing voluntary capacity may request USTRANSCOM to activate their 
pre-negotiated contingency contracts; to the maximum extent possible, 
USTRANSCOM, where appropriate, will support such requests. Volunteered 
capacity will be credited against participants' staged commitments, in 
the event such stages are subsequently activated.

Security Clearances

    All VISA applicants accepted for participation not having a 
Facility Security Clearance (FCL) will be required to pursue the 
facility clearance process with the Defense Security Service (DSS) 
within 45 days. If the accepted applicant does not have a facility 
clearance, MARAD will initiate the clearance process with DSS. 
Participants must have a FCL and a key representative of the company 
must have an individual security clearance, at a minimum of SECRET 
level, in order for them to participate in the VISA Joint Planning 
Advisory Group (JPAG) meetings and to meet VISA contingency contract 
obligations. One of the objectives of the JPAG is to provide the 
USTRANSCOM, MARAD and VISA participants with a planning forum to 
analyze DOD contingency sealift/intermodal service and resource 
requirements against industry commitments. JPAG meetings are often

[[Page 50054]]

SECRET classified sessions. Eligibility for VISA participation will be 
terminated if a key representative does not have a clearance, an 
applicant is rejected for a facility clearance by DSS, or the applicant 
fails to complete the clearance process in a timely manner.

Application for VISA Participation

    New applicants may apply to participate by obtaining a VISA 
application package (Form MA-1020 (OMB Approval No. 2133-0532)) from 
the Director, Office of Sealift Support. Form MA-1020 includes 
instructions for completing and submitting the application, blank VISA 
Application forms and a request for information regarding the 
operations and U.S. citizenship of the applicant company. A copy of the 
VISA document as published in the Federal Register on October 29, 2014 
will also be provided with the package. This information is needed in 
order to assist MARAD in making a determination of the applicant's 
eligibility. An applicant company must provide an affidavit that 
demonstrates that the company is qualified to document a vessel under 
46 U.S.C. 12103, and that it owns, or bareboat charters and controls, 
oceangoing, militarily useful vessel(s) for purposes of committing 
assets to the VISA program.
    New VISA applicants are required to submit their applications for 
the VISA program as described in this Notice no later than 30 days 
after the date of publication of this Federal Register notice. 
Applicants must provide the following: U.S. citizenship documentation; 
Copy of their Articles of Incorporation and/or By Laws; Copies of 
loadline documents from a recognized classification society to validate 
oceangoing vessel capability; U.S. Coast Guard Certificates of 
Documentation for all vessels in their fleet; Copy of Bareboat 
Charters, if applicable, valid through the period of enrollment, which 
state that the owner will not interfere with the charterer's obligation 
to commit chartered vessel(s) to the VISA program for the duration of 
the charter; and Copy of Time Charters, valid through the period of 
enrollment for tug services if sufficient tug service is not owned or 
bareboat chartered by the barge operator. Tug/Barge operators must 
provide evidence to MARAD that tug service of sufficient horsepower 
will be available for all barges enrolled in the VISA program.
    Once MARAD has reviewed the application and determined VISA 
eligibility, MARAD will sign the VISA application document which 
completes the eligibility phase of the VISA enrollment process. 
Approved VISA participants will be responsible for ensuring that 
information submitted with their application remains up to date after 
the approval process. If charter agreements are due to expire, 
participants must provide MARAD with charters that extend the charter 
duration for another 12 months or longer.
    After VISA eligibility is approved by MARAD, approved applicants 
are required to execute a VISA Contingency Contract with the USTRANSCOM 
in a timely manner. The USTRANSCOM VISA Contingency Contract will 
specify the following: Participant's Stage III commitment, and 
appropriate Stage I and/or II commitments for the period October 1, 
2016 through September 30, 2017; Drytime Contingency terms and 
conditions; and Liner Contingency terms and conditions, if applicable. 
If any change is expected in the Contractor's U.S. flag fleet during 
the period of the applicable VISA Contingency Contract, a minimum 30-
day notice shall be provided to MARAD and USTRANSCOM identifying the 
change and to alter the VISA Capacity Commitment indicated on 
Attachment 1 of the VISA Contingency Contract.
    Execution of the USTRANSCOM VISA Contingency Contract completes the 
enrollment process and establishes the approved applicant as a VISA 
Participant. The Maritime Administration reserves the right to 
revalidate all eligibility requirements without notice. USTRANSCOM 
reserves the right to revalidate eligibility for VISA priority for DOD 
business at any time without notice.

    Authority: 49 CFR Sections 1.92 and 1.93.
* * * * *

    By Order of the Maritime Administrator.

    Dated: July 25, 2016.
T. Mitchell Hudson, Jr.,
Secretary, Maritime Administration.
[FR Doc. 2016-17888 Filed 7-28-16; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4910-81-P