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e-CFR data is current as of March 4, 2021

Title 15Subtitle BChapter IXSubchapter BPart 923Subpart H → §923.84

Title 15: Commerce and Foreign Trade
Subpart H—Changes to Approved Management Programs

§923.84   Program change decision criteria.

(a) NOAA shall review all program changes on a case-by-case basis. NOAA shall determine whether a management program, if changed, would continue to satisfy the applicable program approval criteria of CZMA section 306(d) and subparts B through F of this part and the requirements of this subpart (subpart H).

(b) Enforceable policies. In order for NOAA to approve the incorporation of a new or revised enforceable policy into a state's management program, the policy shall:

(1) Be legally binding under state law;

(2) Contain standards of sufficient specificity to guide public and private uses. A policy is not enforceable if it merely directs a state agency to develop regulations or standards.

(i) Definitions and information requirements are essential elements of determining compliance with regulatory and permit standards. As such, a state law or regulation that contains numerous standards, definitions, and information requirements may be considered enforceable in its entirety after consultation with NOAA. If NOAA determines that a law or regulation may be considered enforceable in its entirety, a state shall still need to apply only the substantive standards within the statute or regulation as enforceable policies for CZMA Federal consistency reviews. Procedural requirements are not considered to be enforceable policies for CZMA review purposes.

(ii) [Reserved]

(3) Apply only to areas and/or entities under state jurisdiction;

(4) Not refer to or otherwise purport to apply to Federal agencies, Federal lands or Federal waters. The Act does not authorize states to establish regulatory standards for Federal agencies or for Federal lands or waters. A state policy that would regulate or otherwise establish standards for Federal agencies or Federal lands or waters shall not meet the Act's definition of “enforceable policy” (i.e., legally binding under state law) under 16 U.S.C. 1453(6a). States apply their NOAA-approved enforceable policies to Federal actions, regardless of location, through CZMA Federal consistency reviews under 16 U.S.C. 1456 and part 930 of this subchapter;

(5) Not be preempted by Federal law. If a state policy is preempted by Federal law, the policy is not legally binding under state law and shall not be an enforceable policy under 16 U.S.C. 1453(6a). Policies previously approved by NOAA as enforceable policies shall no longer be enforceable if Federal law enacted after NOAA's approval preempts the state policy;

(6) Not incorporate by reference other state or local requirements that are not identified, described and evaluated as part of the program change request. Any state or local requirements incorporated by reference shall not be applicable for Federal consistency review purposes unless separately approved by NOAA as enforceable policies;

(7) Not discriminate against a particular type of activity or entity. Enforceable policies shall be applied to all relevant public and private entities that would have similar coastal effects. Enforceable policies may be specific to a particular type of activity or entity if NOAA agrees that a state has demonstrated that the activity or entity present unique circumstances; and

(8) Not adversely affect the national interest in the CZMA objectives described in 16 U.S.C. 1451 and 1452.

(c) If enforceable policies previously approved by NOAA become obsolete or unenforceable through application of subsequently enacted state or Federal law, such policies will no longer be enforceable for purposes of CZMA Federal consistency review. For example, a state law change may repeal a previous policy or may change the policy in a manner that changes the scope and application of the policy. In such cases, the previously approved enforceable policy is no longer applicable under state law and the new or substantially revised policy is not applicable for Federal consistency purposes until that policy has been submitted by the state as a program change and approved by NOAA. A previously approved enforceable policy will no longer be legally enforceable under state law if subsequent Federal law preempts the state policy.

(d) Changes to a management program's Federal consistency list or a new or revised geographic location description under part 930 of this subchapter, subparts C, D, E, F or I. For changes to a management program's list of Federal actions or a new or revised geographic location description, the state's effects analysis shall be based on information that would allow NOAA to find that the listed activity, either within the state's coastal zone or within a geographic location described outside the state's coastal zone, would have reasonably foreseeable effects on the uses or resources of the state's coastal zone. A state's analysis asserting impacts to uses or resources outside of the coastal zone shall not, by itself, demonstrate a coastal effect; rather, the state shall describe a causal connection of how an impact outside the coastal zone could result in a coastal effect. A state's effects analysis shall not be based on unsupported conclusions, speculation or the mere existence of coastal uses or resources within a geographic location. A state's coastal effects analysis shall, to the extent practicable, identify:

(1) The affected uses (e.g., commercial and recreational fishing, boating, tourism, shipping, energy facilities) and resources (e.g., fish, marine mammals, reptiles, birds, landmarks).

(2) Where and in what densities the uses and resources are found.

(3) How the state has a specific interest in the resource or use. States should be specific in showing the connection to the coastal zone of the state (e.g., economic values, harvest amounts, vulnerabilities, seasonal information relevant to the proposed activity).

(4) Where the proposed activity overlaps with these resources, uses and values.

(5) Impacts to the resources or uses from the proposed activity.

(6) A reasonable showing of a causal connection to the proposed activity, including how the impacts from the activity results in reasonably foreseeable effects on the state's coastal uses or resources.

(7) Why any required mitigation may be inadequate.

(8) Empirical data and information that supports the effects analysis and: Can be shown to be reliable; visualizes the affected area, resources and uses with maps; and shows values, trends and vulnerabilities.

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