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

Title 15Subtitle BChapter IXSubchapter BPart 923 → Subpart D

Title 15: Commerce and Foreign Trade

Subpart D—Boundaries

§923.30   General.
§923.31   Inland boundary.
§923.32   Lakeward or seaward boundary.
§923.33   Excluded lands.
§923.34   Interstate boundary.

Source: 61 FR 33808, June 28, 1996, unless otherwise noted.

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§923.30   General.

This subpart sets forth the requirements for management program approvability with respect to boundaries of the coastal zone. There are four elements to a State's boundary: the inland boundary, the seaward boundary, areas excluded from the boundary, and, in most cases, interstate boundaries. Specific requirements with respect to procedures for determining and identifying these boundary elements are discussed in the sections of this subpart that follow.

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§923.31   Inland boundary.

(a) The inland boundary of a State's coastal zone must include:

(1) Those areas the management of which is necessary to control uses which have direct and significant impacts on coastal waters, or are likely to be affected by or vulnerable to sea level rise, pursuant to section 923.11 of these regulations.

(2) Those special management areas identified pursuant to §923.21;

(3) Waters under saline influence—waters containing a significant quantity of seawater, as defined by and uniformly applied by the State;

(4) Salt marshes and wetlands—Areas subject to regular inundation of tidal salt (or Great Lakes) waters which contain marsh flora typical of the region;

(5) Beaches—The area affected by wave action directly from the sea. Examples are sandy beaches and rocky areas usually to the vegetation line;

(6) Transitional and intertidal areas-Areas subject to coastal storm surge, and areas containing vegetation that is salt tolerant and survives because of conditions associated with proximity to coastal waters. Transitional and intertidal areas also include dunes and rocky shores to the point of upland vegetation;

(7) Islands—Bodies of land surrounded by water on all sides. Islands must be included in their entirety, except when uses of interior portions of islands do not cause direct and significant impacts.

(8) The inland boundary must be presented in a manner that is clear and exact enough to permit determination of whether property or an activity is located within the management area. States must be able to advise interested parties whether they are subject to the terms of the management program within, at a maximum, 30 days of receipt of an inquiry. An inland coastal zone boundary defined in terms of political jurisdiction (e.g., county, township or municipal lines) cultural features (e.g., highways, railroads), planning areas (e.g., regional agency jurisdictions, census enumeration districts), or a uniform setback line is acceptable so long as it includes the areas indentified.

(b) The inland boundary of a State's coastal zone may include:

(1) Watersheds—A state may determine some uses within entire watersheds which have direct and significant impact on coastal waters or are likely to be affected by or vulnerable to sea level rise. In such cases it may be appropriate to define the coastal zone as including these watersheds.

(2) Areas of tidal influence that extend further inland than waters under saline influence; particularly in estuaries, deltas and rivers where uses inland could have direct and significant impacts on coastal waters or areas that are likely to be affected by or vulnerable to sea level rise.

(3) Indian lands not held in trust by the Federal Government.

(c) In many urban areas or where the shoreline has been modified extensively, natural system relationships between land and water may be extremely difficult, if not, impossible, to define in terms of direct and significant impacts. Two activities that States should consider as causing direct and significant impacts on coastal waters in urban areas are sewage discharges and urban runoff. In addition, States should consider dependency of uses on water access and visual relationships as factors appropriate for the determination of the inland boundary in highly urbanized areas.

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§923.32   Lakeward or seaward boundary.

(a)(1) For states adjoining the Great Lakes, the lakeward boundary of the State's coastal zone is the international boundary with Canada or the boundaries with adjacent states. For states adjacent to the Atlantic or Pacific Ocean, or the Gulf of Mexico, the seaward boundary is the outer limit of state title and ownership under the Submerged Lands Act (48 U.S.C. 1301 et seq.), the Act of March 2, 1917 (48 U.S.C. 749), the Covenant to Establish a Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands in Political Union with the United States of America, as approved by the Act of March 24, 1976 (48 U.S.C. 1681 note) or section 1 of the Act of November 10, 1963, (48 U.S.C. 1705, as applicable).

(2) The requirement for defining the seaward boundary of a State's coastal zone can be met by a simple restatement of the limits defined in this section, unless there are water areas which require a more exact delineation because of site specific policies associated with these areas. Where States have site specific policies for particular water areas, these shall be mapped, described or referenced so that their location can be determined reasonably easily by any party affected by the policies.

(b) The seaward limits, as defined in this section, are for purposes of this program only and represent the area within which the State's management program may be authorized and financed. These limits are irrespective of any other claims States may have by virtue of other laws.

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§923.33   Excluded lands.

(a) The boundary of a State's coastal zone must exclude lands owned, leased, held in trust or whose use is otherwise by law subject solely to the discretion of the Federal Government, its officers or agents. To meet this requirement, the program must describe, list or map lands or types of lands owned, leased, held in trust or otherwise used solely by Federal agencies.

(b) The exclusion of Federal lands does not remove Federal agencies from the obligation of complying with the consistency provisions of section 307 of the Act when Federal actions on these excluded lands have spillover impacts that affect any land or water use or natural resource of the coastal zone within the purview of a state's management program. In excluding Federal lands from a State's coastal zone for the purposes of this Act, a State does not impair any rights or authorities that it may have over Federal lands that exist separate from this program.

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§923.34   Interstate boundary.

States must document that there has been consultation and coordination with adjoining coastal States regarding delineation of any adjacent inland and lateral seaward boundary.

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