Coast Guard proposes removal of Marina del Rey anchorageposted: 6/27/2014
In a docket posted on the Federal Register, the agency said several marina expansion projects have encroached upon the anchorage. The anchorage area remains reserved for yachts and other recreational crafts during emergencies.
“What’s posted online is a notice of a proposed rulemaking,” said Lt. Junior Grade Zachary W. Bonheim of the Coast Guard’s Waterways Management Division District 11. “This is not something that is set in stone yet. This is not a regulation. Basically, we’re notifying the public that this is something that we’re thinking about doing. That’s why it’s open on the internet for people to make comments over. We take those comments into account to see if there is a big reason to necessarily see if people would need to keep the anchorage there.”
Accordingly, single and fore- and aft -moorings are allowed in the area as permitted by the director of the Department of Small Craft Harbors. Operators in the harbor have provided feedback regarding the inactivity of use.
“Vessels rarely use the anchorage due to a high volume of traffic moving through it as vessels transit in and out of the harbor,” the docket said. “This proposed action will remove the anchorage area from the regulations.”
Vessels are permitted to anchor in the harbor during storms or other emergency situations. The proposed ruling has been placed to align the regulations with the current and future configurations of the main channel and docking facilities in Marina del Rey.
“The Coast Guard initiates this process and it goes through all of our legal offices,” Bonheim said. “It goes up to our headquarters offices and through the Code of Federal Regulation. That’s jurisdiction in terms of regulating anchorages and security zones and things like that.”
Bonheim said that once the 30 day public hearing process has ended, the docket will be rerouted through the chain of command, passing regulations and headquarters, and then will be posted again on the Federal Register. He added that the process typically takes between 60 and 90 days before the rule goes into effect.
According to Bonheim, comments and other related material must be received by the Coast Guard on or before June 27. The agency does not plan to hold a public meeting on the decision.
“Right now there is no meeting planned,” Bonheim said. “We normally send members to harbor safety committee meetings to field any questions about current or ongoing projects. If we get a large amount of comments, we’ll take that into account when we move forward.
The docket can be viewed at tinyurl.com/qhxpmuq.