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e-CFR data is current as of January 15, 2021

Title 15Subtitle BChapter IXSubchapter BPart 923 → Subpart A


Title 15: Commerce and Foreign Trade
PART 923—COASTAL ZONE MANAGEMENT PROGRAM REGULATIONS


Subpart A—General


Contents
§923.1   Purpose and scope.
§923.2   Definitions.
§923.3   General requirements.

Source: 61 FR 33805, June 28, 1996, unless otherwise noted.

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§923.1   Purpose and scope.

(a) The regulations in this part set forth the requirements for State coastal management program approval by the Assistant Administrator for Ocean Services and Coastal Zone Management pursuant to the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, as amended (hereafter, the Act); the grant application procedures for program funds; conditions under which grants may be terminated; and requirements for review of approved management programs.

(b) Sections 306 and 307 of the Act set forth requirements which must be fulfilled as a condition of program approval. The specifics of these requirements are set forth below under the following headings: General Requirements; Uses Subject to Management; Special Management Areas; Boundaries; Authorities and Organization; and Coordination, Public Involvement and National Interest. All relevant sections of the Act are dealt with under one of these groupings, but not necessarily in the order in which they appear in the Act.

(c) In summary, the requirements for program approval are that a State develop a management program that:

(1) Identifies and evaluates those coastal resources recognized in the Act as requiring management or protection by the State;

(2) Reexamines existing policies or develops new policies to manage these resources. These policies must be specific, comprehensive, and enforceable;

(3) Determines specific use and special geographic areas that are to be subject to the management program, based on the nature of identified coastal concerns;

(4) Identifies the inland and seaward areas subject to the management program;

(5) Provides for the consideration of the national interest in the planning for and siting of facilities that meet more than local requirements;

(6) Includes sufficient legal authorities and organizational arrangements to implement the program and to ensure conformance to it. In arriving at these elements of the management program, States are obliged to follow an open process which involves providing information to and considering the interests of the general public, special interest groups, local governments, and regional, State, interstate, and Federal agencies;

(7) Provides for public participation in permitting processes, consistency determinations, and other similar decisions;

(8) Provides a mechanism to ensure that all state agencies will adhere to the program; and

(9) Contains enforceable policies and mechanisms to implement the applicable requirements of the Coastal Nonpoint Pollution Control Program of the state required by section 6217 of the Coastal Zone Act Reauthorization Amendments of 1990.

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§923.2   Definitions.

(a) The term Act means the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, as amended.

(b) The term Secretary means the Secretary of Commerce and his/her designee.

(c) The term Assistant Administrator means the Assistant Administrator for Ocean Services and Coastal Zone Management, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), or designee.

(d)(1) The term relevant Federal agencies means those Federal agencies with programs, activities, projects, regulatory, financing, or other assistance responsibilities in the following fields which could impact or affect a State's coastal zone:

(i) Energy production or transmission,

(ii) Recreation of a more than local nature,

(iii) Transportation,

(iv) Production of food and fiber,

(v) Preservation of life and property,

(vi) National defense,

(vii) Historic, cultural, aesthetic, and conservation values,

(viii) Mineral resources and extraction, and

(ix) Pollution abatement and control.

(2) The following are defined as relevant Federal agencies: Department of Agriculture; Department of Commerce; Department of Defense; Department of Education; Department of Energy; Department of Health and Human Services; Department of Housing and Urban Development; Department of the Interior; Department of Transportation; Environmental Protection Agency; Federal Energy Regulatory Commission; General Services Administration, Nuclear Regulatory Commission; Federal Emergency Management Agency.

(e) The term Federal agencies principally affected means the same as “relevant Federal agencies.” The Assistant Administrator may include other agencies for purposes of reviewing the management program and environmental impact statement.

(f) The term Coastal State means a State of the United States in, or bordering on, the Atlantic, Pacific, or Arctic Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico, Long Island Sound, or one or more of the Great Lakes. Pursuant to section 304(3) of the Act, the term also includes Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, and American Samoa. Pursuant to section 703 of the Covenant to Establish a Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands in Political Union with the United States of America, the term also includes the Northern Marianas.

(g) The term management program includes, but is not limited to, a comprehensive statement in words, maps, illustrations, or other media of communication, including an articulation of enforceable policies and citation of authorities providing this enforceability, prepared and adopted by the State in accordance with the provisions of this Act and this part, setting forth objectives, policies, and standards to guide public and private uses of lands and waters in the coastal zone.

(h) The following terms, as used in these regulations, have the same definition as provided in section 304 of the Act:

(1) Coastal zone;

(2) Coastal waters;

(3) Enforceable policy;

(4) Estuary;

(5) Land use; and

(6) Water use.

(i) The term grant means a financial assistance instrument and refers to both grants and cooperative agreements.

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§923.3   General requirements.

(a) The management program must be developed and adopted in accordance with the requirements of the Act and this part, after notice, and the opportunity for full participation by relevant Federal and State agencies, local governments, regional organizations, port authorities, and other interested parties and persons, and be adequate to carry out the purposes of the Act and be consistent with the national policy set forth in section 303 of the Act.

(b) The management program must provide for the management of those land and water uses having a direct and significant impact on coastal waters and those geographic areas which are likely to be affected by or vulnerable to sea level rise. The program must include provisions to assure the appropriate protection of those significant resources and areas, such as wetlands, beaches and dunes, and barrier islands, that make the State's coastal zone a unique, vulnerable, or valuable area.

(c) The management program must contain a broad class of policies for each of the following areas: resource protection, management of coastal development, and simplification of governmental processes. These three broad classes must include specific policies that provide the framework for the exercise of various management techniques and authorities governing coastal resources, uses, and areas. The three classes must include policies that address uses of or impacts on wetlands and floodplains within the State's coastal zone, and that minimize the destruction, loss or degradation of wetlands and preserve and enhance their natural values in accordance with the purposes of Executive Order 11990, pertaining to wetlands. These policies also must reduce risks of flood loss, minimize the impact of floods on human safety, health and welfare, and preserve the natural, beneficial values served by floodplains, in accordance with the purposes of Executive Order 11988, pertaining to floodplains.

(d) The policies in the program must be appropriate to the nature and degree of management needed for uses, areas, and resources identified as subject to the program.

(e) The policies, standards, objectives, criteria, and procedures by which program decisions will be made must provide:

(1) A clear understanding of the content of the program, especially in identifying who will be affected by the program and how, and

(2) A clear sense of direction and predictability for decisionmakers who must take actions pursuant to or consistent with the management program.

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