Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Certain MTSA Facilities Dealing in Low Risk Cargoes May Now Obtain a Waiver from 105

On July 26, 2011 the U. S. Coast Guard posted on their HOMEPORT site MTSA Policy Advisory Council decision (PAC) 02-11, Waiving Facilities that Transfer Certain Low Risk Commodities. The PAC states that “the Coast Guard has taken a closer look at some of the regulated cargoes and their physical properties and has concluded that handling them would likely not contribute to a TSI.” This PAC relieves facilities only of requirements under 33 CFR 105 and does not relieve the vessel of any requirements. Included in this list of cargoes are aggregate, cement, coal, grain, vegetable oils, and pet coke. The following conditions must apply:

1. The facility is not regulated under any other applicability factor;

2. The facility has storage capacity of no more than 42,000 gallons of any other regulated substance;

3. The facility receives no vessels subject to SOLAS;

4. The facility receives no foreign flagged vessels;

5. The facility receives no passenger vessels certificated to carry more than 150 passengers.

Facilities that meet all of the criteria listed above may send a letter to the COTP in their area, requesting that their Facility Security Plan (FSP) be withdrawn. Facilities that meet some, but not all of the criteria may forward a request for a waiver under 33 CFR 105.130 to Commandant (CG-54) requesting permission to waive the requirements of 33 CFR 105 at their facility.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

U. S. Coast Guard to Hold Listening Sessions About CDC Cargo Security in St. Louis and Houston

In today’s Federal Register, (vol. 76, no. 134, July 13, 2011) the U. S. Coast Guard issued an informational notice concerning two listening sessions to be held about CDC cargo security.

SUMMARY: The Coast Guard’s Office of Port and Facility Activities (CG–544) is sponsoring information and listening sessions in St. Louis, MO and Houston, TX to discuss the progress and development of a CDC Security National Strategy to reduce risks associated with the transport, transfer, and storage of Certain Dangerous Cargo (CDC) in bulk within the U.S. Marine Transportation System. These sessions will be open to the public.

DATES: The first session will be held in St. Louis, MO on Tuesday, August 2, 2011, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. The second session will be held in Houston, TX on Thursday, August 18, 2011, from 8 1 p.m.

ADDRESSES: The St. Louis, MO session will be held at the Hilton St. Louis at the Ballpark, One South Broadway, St. Louis, MO 63102. The Houston, TX session will be held at the Hobby Airport Hilton, 8181 Airport Blvd.,Houston, TX 77051.

This meeting is open to the public. Please note that the session may adjourn early if all business, concerns, and questions are addressed. Seating may be limited, but session organizers will make every effort to suitably accommodate all participants. For information on facilities or services for individuals with disabilities, or to request special assistance at either or both sessions, please contact LTJG William Gasperetti or LTJG Bradley Bergan, using the contact information listed in this notice. Written comments will be received for a short period of time after the public meetings from interested stakeholders.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: To submit questions and comments or to RSVP for the sessions, send e-mails to Comments, questions and responses may be posted for public viewing on the Office of Port and Facility Activities (CG–544) Web site at or the Federal Docket Management System at For logistical issues, please contact either LTJG William Gasperetti, Domestic Ports Division (CG–5441) at 202–372–1139 or via e-mail at or LTJG Bradley Bergan, Domestic Ports Division (CG–5441) at 202–372–1149 or via email at

Agenda of Public Meeting

The Coast Guard is holding listening sessions to discuss the working draft of the CDC Security National Strategy and further its development. Primarily, we are soliciting stakeholder input on the goals and how best to implement those goals under a ‘‘shared responsibility’’ paradigm. The agenda for the two sessions will principally consist of a presentation and discussion of certain elements of the working draft of the CDC Security National Strategy and future strategy implementation considerations. Included in the CDC Security National Strategy, and to be discussed, are the following goals:

• Provide to internal and external stakeholders real-time national, regional, and local awareness of the risk of intentional attacks on the CDC Marine Transportation System.

• Consistently assess vulnerability to threats of intentional attacks on the CDC Marine Transportation System and mitigate the vulnerability to an acceptable level.

• Dynamically assess the potential consequences of intentional attacks on the CDC Marine Transportation System and capably mitigate, through coordinated response, the impact of a successful attack.

• Lead the development of national, regional, and local resiliency/recovery capability from successful attacks on the CDC Marine Transportation System.

Comment: The Coast Guard needs to resume tracking CDC on the Western Rivers ASAP.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

MTSA II, DHS Regulatory Agenda Published in Today's Federal Register

Another vote of thanks to PJ Coyle who keeps us all informed. Below is the only information concerning MTSA II from the FR notice, which can be found at

Abstract: The Coast Guard proposes certain additions, changes, and amendments to 33 CFR, subchapter H. Subchapter H is comprised of parts 101 thru 106. Subchapter H implements the
major provisions of the Maritime Transportation Security Act of 2002. This rulemaking is the first major revision to subchapter H. The proposed changes would further enhance the
security of our Nation’s ports, vessels, facilities, and Outer Continental Shelf facilities and incorporate requirements from legislation implemented since the original publication of these regulations, in 2003. This rulemaking has international interest because of the close relationship between subchapter H and the International Ship and Port Security Code (ISPS).

The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking is due out in July 2011.

MTSA-CFATS Harmonization, Info from Spring 2011 Regulatory Agenda, Alert from PJ Coyle

My friend Patrick Coyle, in his excellent blog Chemical Facility Security News ( has alerted us to some information on the MTSA-CFATS harmonization that came out in the spring 2011 regulatory agenda that also gave us the information on the MTSA II update. This information is posted on the OMB website at

Title: ●Top Screen Information Collection from MTSA-Regulated Facilities Handling Chemicals

Abstract: The Coast Guard proposes to require facilities regulated under the Maritime Transportation Security Act of 2002 (Pub. L. 107-295) (MTSA) that transport or handle certain chemicals of interest to submit a "Top-Screen" to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). DHS developed Top-Screen under the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act of 2007 (Pub. L. 109-295), section 550) (CFATS). This rulemaking would not subject MTSA-regulated facilities to CFATS requirements.

Supposedly a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking will be issued in December 2011.

Opinion: One byproduct of the CFATS/MTSA issue may be a move of qualified personnel from the USCG to DHS Infrastructure Security Compliance Division (ISCD); it will be difficult to ignore the financial incentives.