Hot Springs National Park; Bicycling, 64423-64426 [2019-25338]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 226 / Friday, November 22, 2019 / Rules and Regulations Section 200.89 also issued under 20 U.S.C. 6391–6399, 6571, 18 U.S.C. 1001. Section 200.90 also issued under 20 U.S.C. 6432, 6454, 6472. Section 200.100 also issued under 20 U.S.C. 6303, 6303b, 6304. Section 200.103 also issued under 20 U.S.C. 6315(c)(1)(A)(ii), 6571(a), 8101(4). 2. Section 200.89 is amended by: a. Revising paragraphs (b)(2) introductory text and (b)(2)(i) and (ii). ■ b. Removing the parenthetical authority citation at the end of the section. The revisions read as follows: ■ ■ § 200.89 Re-interviewing; eligibility documentation; and quality control. khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with RULES * * * * * (b) * * * (2) Prospective re-interviewing. As part of the system of quality controls identified in paragraph (d) of this section, an SEA that receives MEP funds must annually validate child eligibility determinations from the current performance reporting period (September 1 to August 31) through reinterviews for a randomly selected sample of children identified as migratory during the same performance reporting period. In conducting these reinterviews, an SEA must— (i) Except as specified in paragraphs (b)(2)(i)(A) and (B) of this section, use one or more re-interviewers who may be SEA or local operating agency staff members working to administer or operate the State MEP, or any other person trained to conduct personal interviews and to understand and apply program eligibility requirements, but who did not work on the initial eligibility determinations being tested; (A) At least once every three years until September 1, 2020, SEAs must use one or more independent reinterviewers (i.e., interviewers who are neither SEA nor local operating agency staff members working to administer or operate the State MEP nor any other persons who worked on the initial eligibility determinations being tested and who are trained to conduct personal interviews and to understand and apply program eligibility requirements). (B) Beginning September 1, 2020, an SEA must use one or more independent re-interviewers to validate child eligibility determinations made during one of the first three full performance reporting periods (September 1 through August 31) following the effective date of a major statutory or regulatory change that directly impacts child eligibility (as determined by the Secretary). Therefore, the entire sample of eligibility determinations to be tested by independent re-interviewers must be drawn from children determined to be VerDate Sep<11>2014 15:48 Nov 21, 2019 Jkt 250001 eligible in a single performance period, based on eligibility requirements that include the major statutory or regulatory change. (ii) Select a random sample of identified migratory children so that a sufficient number of eligibility determinations in the current performance reporting period are tested on a statewide basis or within categories associated with identified risk factors (e.g., experience of recruiters, size or growth in local migratory child population, effectiveness of local quality control procedures) in order to help identify possible problems with the State’s child eligibility determinations; * * * * * [FR Doc. 2019–25424 Filed 11–21–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000–01–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR National Park Service 36 CFR Part 7 [NPS–HOSP–28641; PPMWMWROW2/ PMP00UP05.YP0000] RIN 1024–AE50 Hot Springs National Park; Bicycling National Park Service, Interior. Final rule. AGENCY: ACTION: The National Park Service amends the special regulations for Hot Springs National Park to allow bicycle use on a new trail connection between the Park and property owned by the City of Hot Springs, Arkansas. The new 0.65mile trail will provide local residents and visitors with access in and across the Park to an extensive network of recreational trails in the City’s Northwoods Urban Forest Park. The new natural surface, multi-use trail connection will be open to both pedestrian and bicycle use. National Park Service regulations require promulgation of a special regulation to designate new trails for bicycle use off park roads and outside developed areas. DATES: This rule is effective on December 23, 2019. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tokey Boswell, Chief of Planning and Compliance, Serving DOI Unified Regions 3, 4, and 5, 601 Riverfront Drive, Omaha, Nebraska 68102. Phone: 402 661–1534, Email: tokey_boswell@ nps.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: SUMMARY: Background People have long recognized the unique thermal waters that flow from PO 00000 Frm 00013 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 64423 the base of Hot Springs Mountain in Hot Springs, Arkansas. For thousands of years before it became a favored vacation destination in the 18th century, and prior to the arrival of early European explorers journeying west of the Mississippi River, Native Americans from around the region traveled to the springs and surrounding rocky mountain slopes, quarrying novaculite from the hilltops for their tools and weapons, and drinking and bathing in the mineral rich waters bubbling from the ground. The first permanent settlers to reach the Hot Springs area in 1807 were quick to realize the springs’ potential as a health resort, and a bustling town grew up around the hot springs to provide services for health seekers. To protect this unique national resource and preserve it for the use of the public, Congress set aside the springs and adjoining mountains as a Federal reservation in 1832, making it the oldest unit of the National Park System. Over the next 50 years, the area transformed from a rough frontier town to an elegant and thriving spa city. In 1921, Congress designated the reservation as Hot Springs National Park (the Park). Today, the 5,500-acre Park contains vegetation, thermal waters, cold-water springs, bathhouses and associated cultural features, nearly 26 miles of hiking and equestrian trails, and prehistoric and historic novaculite quarries. The National Park Service (NPS) preserves and manages the natural and cultural resources of the Park for more than 1.5 million annual visitors. The City of Hot Springs, with an approximate population of 37,000, is located next to the Park. Pullman Avenue Trail Connection/ Environmental Assessment The NPS will create a new 0.65-mile natural surface trail within the Park. This new Pullman Avenue Trail Connection will extend north from a trailhead at Pullman Avenue and connect the Park with ongoing trail development on City property at the Park’s northern boundary. The NPS will build the trail using sustainable trail construction techniques and designate it for both pedestrian and bicycle use. The trail will follow the natural contours of the site, winding around obstacles such as trees, large rocks, and bushes; and will feature shallower grades and wider turns to support user safety, reduce water pooling and erosion, and reduce the overall maintenance costs associated with more complex trail features. This gently-graded bare soil and bedrock trail connection will (1) better connect the Park with the adjacent City and county E:\FR\FM\22NOR1.SGM 22NOR1 khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with RULES 64424 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 226 / Friday, November 22, 2019 / Rules and Regulations trail networks for the benefit of visitors and residents of the City; (2) expand recreational trail use opportunities for hikers and bikers; and (3) enhance visitor experience and safety while protecting natural and cultural resources. The NPS will implement measures to promote safe use of the trail, such as signage and trail maintenance. This trail will serve as a formalized entry point into the Park for hikers and bicyclists where currently there is none. This will increase access to the Park, which helps the NPS meet its mandate to manage the hot springs for public health, wellness, and enjoyment. On February 1, 2019, the NPS published the Pullman Avenue Trail Connection/Environmental Assessment (EA). The EA presents two alternatives for future trail opportunities at the Park, and identifies one of the alternatives as the NPS preferred alternative. Under the preferred alternative, the NPS will construct the Pullman Avenue Trail Connection and designate it for pedestrian and bicycle use. The EA evaluates (1) the suitability of the Pullman Avenue Trail Connection for bicycle use; and (2) life cycle maintenance costs, safety considerations, methods to prevent or minimize user conflict, and methods to protect natural and cultural resources and mitigate impacts associated with bicycle use on the trail in compliance with 36 CFR 4.30(e)(2). The EA contains a full description of the purpose and need for taking action, the alternatives considered, maps, and the environmental impacts associated with the project. After a public review period, the Acting Regional Director, Interior Regions 3, 4, and 5 (formerly the Midwest Region) signed a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) on July 28, 2019 that identified the preferred alternative (Alternative B) in the EA as the selected alternative. Concurrently, the Acting Regional Director signed a Written Determination to assure that bicycle use on the new trail is consistent with the protection of the Park’s natural, scenic, and aesthetic values, safety considerations and management objectives, and that it will not disturb wildlife or park resources. The EA, FONSI, and Written Determination may be viewed online at http:// parkplanning.nps.gov/Pullman Connection, by clicking on ‘‘Document List.’’ Final Rule This rule implements the selected alternative in the FONSI and authorizes the Superintendent to designate bicycle use on the Pullman Avenue Trail VerDate Sep<11>2014 15:48 Nov 21, 2019 Jkt 250001 Connection. This rule does not include any existing park trails, which are not and will not be opened to bicycles by this rule. This rule complies with the requirement in 36 CFR 4.30 that the NPS must promulgate a special regulation in order to designate a new bicycle trail that requires construction activities outside of developed areas. The rule adds a new paragraph (c) to 36 CFR 7.18—Special Regulations, Areas of the National Park System for Hot Springs National Park. After the trail is constructed, the rule requires the Superintendent to notify the public prior to designating the trail for bicycle use through one or more of the methods listed in 36 CFR 1.7, and identify the designation on maps available at Park visitor centers and on the Park website (www.nps.gov/hosp). Where the trail crosses or intersects other Park trails closed to bicycle use, signage will clearly indicate allowed uses and restrictions at those intersections. The rule also authorizes the superintendent to establish closures, conditions, or restrictions for bicycle use on the trail after considering public health and safety, resource protection, and other management activities and objectives, provided public notice is given under 36 CFR 1.7(a). E-bikes will be allowed on the new trail in accordance with NPS Policy Memorandum 19–01—Electric Bicycles. Summary of Public Comments The NPS published a proposed rule in the Federal Register on May 15, 2019 (84 FR 21738). The NPS accepted public comments on the proposed rule for 60 days via the mail, hard delivery, and the Federal eRulemaking Portal at http:// www.regulations.gov. Comments were accepted through July 15, 2019. A total of 15 comments were submitted and reviewed. A majority of commenters supported the proposed rule. A summary of the pertinent issues raised in the comments and NPS responses are provided below. 1. Comment: Some commenters raised general concerns about impacts to natural resources from mountain biking, including soil erosion, habitat degradation, and wildlife disturbance. One commenter suggested that the NPS construct the trail surface to support bicycles without leaving ruts or damaging natural resources. NPS Response: The NPS is aware of the potential for erosion and other disturbances to natural conditions that could be caused by constructing the new trail and allowing hiking and biking on the trail. The EA and FONSI determined that these impacts would PO 00000 Frm 00014 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 not be significant, and could be mitigated by using appropriate construction techniques. The NPS will work with experts in trail design to minimize impacts to natural resources. 2. Comment: Several commenters raised general concerns about impacts to other visitors from mountain biking, including impacts to hikers and equestrians who seek a non-motorized and quiet experience in national parks. One commenter objected to the building of the trail because although it improves access for one recreational activity, it does not maximize the visitor experience for the broader visiting public. NPS Response: The NPS acknowledges the potential for conflict among trail user types. The EA and FONSI determined that visitor conflicts would not be significant. The new trail will not change the use patterns or opportunities for recreation on existing trails. The new trail and new uses allowed on it expand options for recreation within the Park. 3. Comment: Some commenters raised concerns about visitor safety on the trail. One commenter requested the NPS establish right-of-way rules to protect pedestrians from bicycles. Another commenter requested the NPS enforce a bicycle speed limit of five miles per hour. NPS Response: The NPS acknowledges the potential for conflicts among visitors on the trail. Similar conflicts currently exist within the Park where equestrians and hikers share trails. The EA and FONSI determined that the potential impact to visitor safety was not significant, and could be minimized through signage and education. The NPS will mark trails with signs identifying rules about yielding to other user groups. The natural surface of the trail would make it difficult to establish lanes for different types of uses. Existing trails within the Park do not have speed limits and the terrain of the new trail will naturally limit speeds. The NPS will monitor use on the trail and the Superintendent may implement measures, including speed limits, that may become necessary to promote safe use of the trail by all user groups. Compliance With Other Laws, Executive Orders and Department Policy Regulatory Planning and Review (Executive Orders 12866 and 13563) Executive Order 12866 provides that the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs in the Office of Management and Budget will review all significant rules. The Office of Information and E:\FR\FM\22NOR1.SGM 22NOR1 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 226 / Friday, November 22, 2019 / Rules and Regulations Regulatory Affairs has determined that this rule is not significant. Executive Order 13563 reaffirms the principles of Executive Order 12866 while calling for improvements in the nation’s regulatory system to promote predictability, to reduce uncertainty, and to use the best, most innovative, and least burdensome tools for achieving regulatory ends. The executive order directs agencies to consider regulatory approaches that reduce burdens and maintain flexibility and freedom of choice for the public where these approaches are relevant, feasible, and consistent with regulatory objectives. Executive Order 13563 emphasizes further that regulations must be based on the best available science and that the rulemaking process must allow for public participation and an open exchange of ideas. We have developed this rule in a manner consistent with these requirements. Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs (Executive Order 13771) Enabling regulations are considered deregulatory under guidance implementing E.O. 13771 (M–17–21). This rule authorizes the Superintendent to designate a trail for bicycle use at the Park, which will create an opportunity for recreation and access that would otherwise be prohibited. Regulatory Flexibility Act This rule will not have a significant economic effect on a substantial number of small entities under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.). This certification is based on information contained in the economic analyses found in the report entitled Draft Cost-Benefit and Regulatory Flexibility Threshold Analyses: Proposed Special Regulations to Designate a New Trail Connection for Bicycle Use at Hot Springs National Park. The document may be viewed at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/Pullman Connection, by clicking on the link entitled ‘‘Document List.’’ khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with RULES Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act This rule is not a major rule under 5 U.S.C. 804(2), the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act. This rule: (a) Does not have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more. (b) Will not cause a major increase in costs or prices for consumers, individual industries, Federal, State, or local government agencies, or geographic regions. VerDate Sep<11>2014 15:48 Nov 21, 2019 Jkt 250001 (c) Does not have significant adverse effects on competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or the ability of U.S.-based enterprises to compete with foreign-based enterprises. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act This rule does not impose an unfunded mandate on State, local, or tribal governments or the private sector of more than $100 million per year. The rule does not have a significant or unique effect on State, local or tribal governments or the private sector. It addresses public use of national park lands, and imposes no requirements on other agencies or governments. A statement containing the information required by the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (2 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) is not required. Takings (Executive Order 12630) This rule does not effect a taking of private property or otherwise have takings implications under Executive Order 12630. A takings implication assessment is not required. Federalism (Executive Order 13132) Under the criteria in section 1 of Executive Order 13132, the rule does not have sufficient federalism implications to warrant the preparation of a federalism summary impact statement. This rule only affects use of federally-administered lands and waters. It has no outside effects on other areas. A federalism summary impact statement is not required. Civil Justice Reform (Executive Order 12988) This rule complies with the requirements of Executive Order 12988. This rule: (a) Meets the criteria of section 3(a) requiring that all regulations be reviewed to eliminate errors and ambiguity and be written to minimize litigation; and (b) Meets the criteria of section 3(b)(2) requiring that all regulations be written in clear language and contain clear legal standards. Consultation With Indian Tribes (Executive Order 13175 and Department Policy) The Department of the Interior strives to strengthen its government-togovernment relationship with Indian Tribes through a commitment to consultation with Indian tribes and recognition of their right to selfgovernance and tribal sovereignty. We have evaluated this rule under the criteria in Executive Order 13175 and under the Department’s tribal PO 00000 Frm 00015 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 64425 consultation policy and have determined that tribal consultation is not required because the rule will have no substantial direct effect on federally recognized Indian tribes. Nevertheless, in support of the Department of Interior and NPS commitment for governmentto-government consultation, through the EA process, the NPS initiated consultation with the four Indian tribes traditionally associated with the Park. Paperwork Reduction Act This rule does not contain information collection requirements, and a submission to the Office of Management and Budget under the Paperwork Reduction Act is not required. We may not conduct or sponsor and you are not required to respond to a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) The NPS has prepared the EA to determine whether this rule will have a significant impact on the quality of the human environment under the NEPA. This rule does not constitute a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment. A detailed statement under the NEPA is not required because of the FONSI. A copy of the EA and FONSI can be found online at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/ PullmanConnection, by clicking on the link entitled ‘‘Document List.’’ Effects on the Energy Supply (Executive Order 13211) This rule is not a significant energy action under the definition in Executive Order 13211. A Statement of Energy Effects in not required. Drafting Information The primary authors of this regulation are Julia Larkin and Jay Calhoun, National Park Service, Division of Regulations, Jurisdiction, and Special Park Uses. List of Subjects in 36 CFR Part 7 National parks, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements. In consideration of the foregoing, the National Park Service amends 36 CFR part 7 as set forth below: PART 7—SPECIAL REGULATIONS, AREAS OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM 1. The authority citation for part 7 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 54 U.S.C. 100101, 100751, 320102; Sec. 7.96 also issued under D.C. Code 10–137 and D.C. Code 50–2201.07. E:\FR\FM\22NOR1.SGM 22NOR1 64426 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 226 / Friday, November 22, 2019 / Rules and Regulations 2. Amend § 7.18 by adding paragraph (c) to read as follows: ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY § 7.18 40 CFR Part 52 ■ Hot Springs National Park. * * * * * (c) Bicycle use. (1) The Superintendent may designate all or a portion of the following trail as open to bicycle use: (i) Pullman Avenue Trail Connection (full length of the trail approximately 0.65 miles). (ii) [Reserved] (2) A map showing trails open to bicycle use will be available at park visitor centers and posted on the park website. The Superintendent will provide notice of all trails designated for bicycle use in accordance with § 1.7 of this chapter. The Superintendent may limit, restrict, or impose conditions on bicycle use, or close any trail to bicycle use, or terminate such conditions, closures, limits, or restrictions in accordance with § 4.30 of this chapter. Rob Wallace, Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks. [FR Doc. 2019–25338 Filed 11–21–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4312–EJ–P Local agency 325 334 339 We proposed to approve the rescission of these rules because we determined that the SIP revisions, i.e., rule rescissions, comply with the relevant CAA requirements, including CAA sections 110(l) and 193. Our proposed action contains more information on the rules and our evaluation. khammond on DSKJM1Z7X2PROD with RULES II. Public Comments and EPA Responses The EPA’s proposed action provided a 30-day public comment period. During this period, we received one anonymous comment. Comment: The EPA should not approve this submission until Maricopa County and Arizona move to strike the aforementioned regulations from each applicable approved plan. These plans were approved with these regulations incorporated in them and now must be 15:48 Nov 21, 2019 Air Plan Approval; Arizona; Maricopa County Air Quality Department Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). ACTION: Final rule. AGENCY: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking final action to approve revisions to the Maricopa County Air Quality Department (MCAQD) portion of the Arizona State Implementation Plan (SIP). These revisions concern emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and particulate matter (PM) from brick and structural clay products manufacturing, rubber sports ball manufacturing, and vegetable oil extraction processes. We are approving the rescission of local rules that regulate these emission sources under the Clean Air Act (CAA or the Act). DATES: These rule rescissions will be effective on December 23, 2019. ADDRESSES: The EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket ID No. EPA–R09–OAR–2019–0497. All documents in the docket are listed on the https://www.regulations.gov SUMMARY: Rule No. MCAQD ................................... MCAQD ................................... MCAQD ................................... VerDate Sep<11>2014 [EPA–R09–OAR–2019–0497; FRL–10002– 13–Region 9] Jkt 250001 website. Although listed in the index, some information is not publicly available, e.g., Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such as copyrighted material, is not placed on the internet and will be publicly available only in hard copy form. Publicly available docket materials are available through https:// www.regulations.gov, or please contact the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section for additional availability information. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Robert Schwartz, EPA Region IX, 75 Hawthorne St., San Francisco, CA 94105. By phone: (415) 972–3286 or by email at schwartz.robert@epa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Throughout this document, ‘‘we,’’ ‘‘us’’ and ‘‘our’’ refer to the EPA. Table of Contents I. Proposed Action II. Public Comments and EPA Responses III. EPA Action IV. Incorporation by Reference V. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews I. Proposed Action On September 9, 2019 (84 FR 47211), the EPA proposed to approve the rescission of the following rules from the Arizona SIP. Adopted revised Rule title Brick and Structural Clay Products (BSCP) Manufacturing ... Rubber Sports Ball Manufacturing ......................................... Vegetable Oil Extraction Processes ....................................... updated to account for the fact that these regulations no longer exist. The EPA should require Maricopa County and Arizona to submit new plans to replace the old approved plans so the EPA can ensure the county and state’s plans still meet the necessary requirements just as the old plans did previously. The EPA must require that the plans be updated to the most recent regulations. The EPA’s Response: The SIP revision that is the subject of our September 9, 2019 proposed rule rescinds three MCAQD rules from the Arizona SIP. As noted in our September 9, 2019 proposed rule, MCAQD rescinded these three rules from the local rulebook on December 13, 2017, and ADEQ adopted the rule rescissions as a revision to the Maricopa County portion of the Arizona SIP on December 18, 2017. 84 FR 47211/ column 3. The three rules are being PO 00000 Frm 00016 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 08/10/2005 06/19/1996 11/16/1992 Rescission submitted 12/18/2017 12/18/2017 12/18/2017 rescinded, and not replaced, because the rules no longer apply to any sources. The sources for which the rules were originally developed and adopted have closed, and no new sources of the types covered by the rules are expected to establish operations in Maricopa County. As such, we find that no replacement of the rules is necessary to avoid interference with attainment or maintenance of any of the national ambient air quality standards in Maricopa County or any other requirement of the CAA. III. EPA Action No comments were submitted that change our assessment of the rules as described in our proposed action. Therefore, as authorized in section 110(k)(3) of the Act, the EPA is fully approving these rule rescissions from the Arizona SIP. E:\FR\FM\22NOR1.SGM 22NOR1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 226 (Friday, November 22, 2019)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 64423-64426]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-25338]


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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

National Park Service

36 CFR Part 7

[NPS-HOSP-28641; PPMWMWROW2/PMP00UP05.YP0000]
RIN 1024-AE50


Hot Springs National Park; Bicycling

AGENCY: National Park Service, Interior.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: The National Park Service amends the special regulations for 
Hot Springs National Park to allow bicycle use on a new trail 
connection between the Park and property owned by the City of Hot 
Springs, Arkansas. The new 0.65-mile trail will provide local residents 
and visitors with access in and across the Park to an extensive network 
of recreational trails in the City's Northwoods Urban Forest Park. The 
new natural surface, multi-use trail connection will be open to both 
pedestrian and bicycle use. National Park Service regulations require 
promulgation of a special regulation to designate new trails for 
bicycle use off park roads and outside developed areas.

DATES: This rule is effective on December 23, 2019.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Tokey Boswell, Chief of Planning and 
Compliance, Serving DOI Unified Regions 3, 4, and 5, 601 Riverfront 
Drive, Omaha, Nebraska 68102. Phone: 402 661-1534, Email: 
[email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    People have long recognized the unique thermal waters that flow 
from the base of Hot Springs Mountain in Hot Springs, Arkansas. For 
thousands of years before it became a favored vacation destination in 
the 18th century, and prior to the arrival of early European explorers 
journeying west of the Mississippi River, Native Americans from around 
the region traveled to the springs and surrounding rocky mountain 
slopes, quarrying novaculite from the hilltops for their tools and 
weapons, and drinking and bathing in the mineral rich waters bubbling 
from the ground. The first permanent settlers to reach the Hot Springs 
area in 1807 were quick to realize the springs' potential as a health 
resort, and a bustling town grew up around the hot springs to provide 
services for health seekers.
    To protect this unique national resource and preserve it for the 
use of the public, Congress set aside the springs and adjoining 
mountains as a Federal reservation in 1832, making it the oldest unit 
of the National Park System. Over the next 50 years, the area 
transformed from a rough frontier town to an elegant and thriving spa 
city. In 1921, Congress designated the reservation as Hot Springs 
National Park (the Park). Today, the 5,500-acre Park contains 
vegetation, thermal waters, cold-water springs, bathhouses and 
associated cultural features, nearly 26 miles of hiking and equestrian 
trails, and prehistoric and historic novaculite quarries. The National 
Park Service (NPS) preserves and manages the natural and cultural 
resources of the Park for more than 1.5 million annual visitors. The 
City of Hot Springs, with an approximate population of 37,000, is 
located next to the Park.

Pullman Avenue Trail Connection/Environmental Assessment

    The NPS will create a new 0.65-mile natural surface trail within 
the Park. This new Pullman Avenue Trail Connection will extend north 
from a trailhead at Pullman Avenue and connect the Park with ongoing 
trail development on City property at the Park's northern boundary. The 
NPS will build the trail using sustainable trail construction 
techniques and designate it for both pedestrian and bicycle use. The 
trail will follow the natural contours of the site, winding around 
obstacles such as trees, large rocks, and bushes; and will feature 
shallower grades and wider turns to support user safety, reduce water 
pooling and erosion, and reduce the overall maintenance costs 
associated with more complex trail features. This gently-graded bare 
soil and bedrock trail connection will (1) better connect the Park with 
the adjacent City and county

[[Page 64424]]

trail networks for the benefit of visitors and residents of the City; 
(2) expand recreational trail use opportunities for hikers and bikers; 
and (3) enhance visitor experience and safety while protecting natural 
and cultural resources. The NPS will implement measures to promote safe 
use of the trail, such as signage and trail maintenance. This trail 
will serve as a formalized entry point into the Park for hikers and 
bicyclists where currently there is none. This will increase access to 
the Park, which helps the NPS meet its mandate to manage the hot 
springs for public health, wellness, and enjoyment.
    On February 1, 2019, the NPS published the Pullman Avenue Trail 
Connection/Environmental Assessment (EA). The EA presents two 
alternatives for future trail opportunities at the Park, and identifies 
one of the alternatives as the NPS preferred alternative. Under the 
preferred alternative, the NPS will construct the Pullman Avenue Trail 
Connection and designate it for pedestrian and bicycle use. The EA 
evaluates (1) the suitability of the Pullman Avenue Trail Connection 
for bicycle use; and (2) life cycle maintenance costs, safety 
considerations, methods to prevent or minimize user conflict, and 
methods to protect natural and cultural resources and mitigate impacts 
associated with bicycle use on the trail in compliance with 36 CFR 
4.30(e)(2). The EA contains a full description of the purpose and need 
for taking action, the alternatives considered, maps, and the 
environmental impacts associated with the project. After a public 
review period, the Acting Regional Director, Interior Regions 3, 4, and 
5 (formerly the Midwest Region) signed a Finding of No Significant 
Impact (FONSI) on July 28, 2019 that identified the preferred 
alternative (Alternative B) in the EA as the selected alternative. 
Concurrently, the Acting Regional Director signed a Written 
Determination to assure that bicycle use on the new trail is consistent 
with the protection of the Park's natural, scenic, and aesthetic 
values, safety considerations and management objectives, and that it 
will not disturb wildlife or park resources. The EA, FONSI, and Written 
Determination may be viewed online at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/PullmanConnection, by clicking on ``Document List.''

Final Rule

    This rule implements the selected alternative in the FONSI and 
authorizes the Superintendent to designate bicycle use on the Pullman 
Avenue Trail Connection. This rule does not include any existing park 
trails, which are not and will not be opened to bicycles by this rule.
    This rule complies with the requirement in 36 CFR 4.30 that the NPS 
must promulgate a special regulation in order to designate a new 
bicycle trail that requires construction activities outside of 
developed areas. The rule adds a new paragraph (c) to 36 CFR 7.18--
Special Regulations, Areas of the National Park System for Hot Springs 
National Park. After the trail is constructed, the rule requires the 
Superintendent to notify the public prior to designating the trail for 
bicycle use through one or more of the methods listed in 36 CFR 1.7, 
and identify the designation on maps available at Park visitor centers 
and on the Park website (www.nps.gov/hosp). Where the trail crosses or 
intersects other Park trails closed to bicycle use, signage will 
clearly indicate allowed uses and restrictions at those intersections. 
The rule also authorizes the superintendent to establish closures, 
conditions, or restrictions for bicycle use on the trail after 
considering public health and safety, resource protection, and other 
management activities and objectives, provided public notice is given 
under 36 CFR 1.7(a). E-bikes will be allowed on the new trail in 
accordance with NPS Policy Memorandum 19-01--Electric Bicycles.

Summary of Public Comments

    The NPS published a proposed rule in the Federal Register on May 
15, 2019 (84 FR 21738). The NPS accepted public comments on the 
proposed rule for 60 days via the mail, hard delivery, and the Federal 
eRulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov. Comments were 
accepted through July 15, 2019. A total of 15 comments were submitted 
and reviewed. A majority of commenters supported the proposed rule. A 
summary of the pertinent issues raised in the comments and NPS 
responses are provided below.
    1. Comment: Some commenters raised general concerns about impacts 
to natural resources from mountain biking, including soil erosion, 
habitat degradation, and wildlife disturbance. One commenter suggested 
that the NPS construct the trail surface to support bicycles without 
leaving ruts or damaging natural resources.
    NPS Response: The NPS is aware of the potential for erosion and 
other disturbances to natural conditions that could be caused by 
constructing the new trail and allowing hiking and biking on the trail. 
The EA and FONSI determined that these impacts would not be 
significant, and could be mitigated by using appropriate construction 
techniques. The NPS will work with experts in trail design to minimize 
impacts to natural resources.
    2. Comment: Several commenters raised general concerns about 
impacts to other visitors from mountain biking, including impacts to 
hikers and equestrians who seek a non-motorized and quiet experience in 
national parks. One commenter objected to the building of the trail 
because although it improves access for one recreational activity, it 
does not maximize the visitor experience for the broader visiting 
public.
    NPS Response: The NPS acknowledges the potential for conflict among 
trail user types. The EA and FONSI determined that visitor conflicts 
would not be significant. The new trail will not change the use 
patterns or opportunities for recreation on existing trails. The new 
trail and new uses allowed on it expand options for recreation within 
the Park.
    3. Comment: Some commenters raised concerns about visitor safety on 
the trail. One commenter requested the NPS establish right-of-way rules 
to protect pedestrians from bicycles. Another commenter requested the 
NPS enforce a bicycle speed limit of five miles per hour.
    NPS Response: The NPS acknowledges the potential for conflicts 
among visitors on the trail. Similar conflicts currently exist within 
the Park where equestrians and hikers share trails. The EA and FONSI 
determined that the potential impact to visitor safety was not 
significant, and could be minimized through signage and education. The 
NPS will mark trails with signs identifying rules about yielding to 
other user groups. The natural surface of the trail would make it 
difficult to establish lanes for different types of uses. Existing 
trails within the Park do not have speed limits and the terrain of the 
new trail will naturally limit speeds. The NPS will monitor use on the 
trail and the Superintendent may implement measures, including speed 
limits, that may become necessary to promote safe use of the trail by 
all user groups.

Compliance With Other Laws, Executive Orders and Department Policy 
Regulatory Planning and Review (Executive Orders 12866 and 13563)

    Executive Order 12866 provides that the Office of Information and 
Regulatory Affairs in the Office of Management and Budget will review 
all significant rules. The Office of Information and

[[Page 64425]]

Regulatory Affairs has determined that this rule is not significant.
    Executive Order 13563 reaffirms the principles of Executive Order 
12866 while calling for improvements in the nation's regulatory system 
to promote predictability, to reduce uncertainty, and to use the best, 
most innovative, and least burdensome tools for achieving regulatory 
ends. The executive order directs agencies to consider regulatory 
approaches that reduce burdens and maintain flexibility and freedom of 
choice for the public where these approaches are relevant, feasible, 
and consistent with regulatory objectives. Executive Order 13563 
emphasizes further that regulations must be based on the best available 
science and that the rulemaking process must allow for public 
participation and an open exchange of ideas. We have developed this 
rule in a manner consistent with these requirements.

Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs (Executive Order 
13771)

    Enabling regulations are considered deregulatory under guidance 
implementing E.O. 13771 (M-17-21). This rule authorizes the 
Superintendent to designate a trail for bicycle use at the Park, which 
will create an opportunity for recreation and access that would 
otherwise be prohibited.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    This rule will not have a significant economic effect on a 
substantial number of small entities under the Regulatory Flexibility 
Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.). This certification is based on information 
contained in the economic analyses found in the report entitled Draft 
Cost-Benefit and Regulatory Flexibility Threshold Analyses: Proposed 
Special Regulations to Designate a New Trail Connection for Bicycle Use 
at Hot Springs National Park. The document may be viewed at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/PullmanConnection, by clicking on the link 
entitled ``Document List.''

Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act

    This rule is not a major rule under 5 U.S.C. 804(2), the Small 
Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act. This rule:
    (a) Does not have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million 
or more.
    (b) Will not cause a major increase in costs or prices for 
consumers, individual industries, Federal, State, or local government 
agencies, or geographic regions.
    (c) Does not have significant adverse effects on competition, 
employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or the ability of 
U.S.-based enterprises to compete with foreign-based enterprises.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

    This rule does not impose an unfunded mandate on State, local, or 
tribal governments or the private sector of more than $100 million per 
year. The rule does not have a significant or unique effect on State, 
local or tribal governments or the private sector. It addresses public 
use of national park lands, and imposes no requirements on other 
agencies or governments. A statement containing the information 
required by the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (2 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) is 
not required.

Takings (Executive Order 12630)

    This rule does not effect a taking of private property or otherwise 
have takings implications under Executive Order 12630. A takings 
implication assessment is not required.

Federalism (Executive Order 13132)

    Under the criteria in section 1 of Executive Order 13132, the rule 
does not have sufficient federalism implications to warrant the 
preparation of a federalism summary impact statement. This rule only 
affects use of federally-administered lands and waters. It has no 
outside effects on other areas. A federalism summary impact statement 
is not required.

Civil Justice Reform (Executive Order 12988)

    This rule complies with the requirements of Executive Order 12988. 
This rule:
    (a) Meets the criteria of section 3(a) requiring that all 
regulations be reviewed to eliminate errors and ambiguity and be 
written to minimize litigation; and
    (b) Meets the criteria of section 3(b)(2) requiring that all 
regulations be written in clear language and contain clear legal 
standards.

Consultation With Indian Tribes (Executive Order 13175 and Department 
Policy)

    The Department of the Interior strives to strengthen its 
government-to-government relationship with Indian Tribes through a 
commitment to consultation with Indian tribes and recognition of their 
right to self-governance and tribal sovereignty. We have evaluated this 
rule under the criteria in Executive Order 13175 and under the 
Department's tribal consultation policy and have determined that tribal 
consultation is not required because the rule will have no substantial 
direct effect on federally recognized Indian tribes. Nevertheless, in 
support of the Department of Interior and NPS commitment for 
government-to-government consultation, through the EA process, the NPS 
initiated consultation with the four Indian tribes traditionally 
associated with the Park.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    This rule does not contain information collection requirements, and 
a submission to the Office of Management and Budget under the Paperwork 
Reduction Act is not required. We may not conduct or sponsor and you 
are not required to respond to a collection of information unless it 
displays a currently valid OMB control number.

National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA)

    The NPS has prepared the EA to determine whether this rule will 
have a significant impact on the quality of the human environment under 
the NEPA. This rule does not constitute a major Federal action 
significantly affecting the quality of the human environment. A 
detailed statement under the NEPA is not required because of the FONSI. 
A copy of the EA and FONSI can be found online at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/PullmanConnection, by clicking on the link 
entitled ``Document List.''

Effects on the Energy Supply (Executive Order 13211)

    This rule is not a significant energy action under the definition 
in Executive Order 13211. A Statement of Energy Effects in not 
required.

Drafting Information

    The primary authors of this regulation are Julia Larkin and Jay 
Calhoun, National Park Service, Division of Regulations, Jurisdiction, 
and Special Park Uses.

List of Subjects in 36 CFR Part 7

    National parks, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    In consideration of the foregoing, the National Park Service amends 
36 CFR part 7 as set forth below:

PART 7--SPECIAL REGULATIONS, AREAS OF THE NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM

0
1. The authority citation for part 7 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  54 U.S.C. 100101, 100751, 320102; Sec. 7.96 also 
issued under D.C. Code 10-137 and D.C. Code 50-2201.07.


[[Page 64426]]



0
2. Amend Sec.  7.18 by adding paragraph (c) to read as follows:


Sec.  7.18  Hot Springs National Park.

* * * * *
    (c) Bicycle use. (1) The Superintendent may designate all or a 
portion of the following trail as open to bicycle use:
    (i) Pullman Avenue Trail Connection (full length of the trail 
approximately 0.65 miles).
    (ii) [Reserved]
    (2) A map showing trails open to bicycle use will be available at 
park visitor centers and posted on the park website. The Superintendent 
will provide notice of all trails designated for bicycle use in 
accordance with Sec.  1.7 of this chapter. The Superintendent may 
limit, restrict, or impose conditions on bicycle use, or close any 
trail to bicycle use, or terminate such conditions, closures, limits, 
or restrictions in accordance with Sec.  4.30 of this chapter.

Rob Wallace,
Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks.
[FR Doc. 2019-25338 Filed 11-21-19; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4312-EJ-P