NMSAC Meeting Set for January 18-19, 2012
A meeting of the National Maritime Security Advisory Committee (NMSAC) will be held in Arlington, VA, on January 18th and 19th, according to a US Coast Guard Notice published in the Federal Register on January 9th.
The meeting will be open to the public, although seating is “very limited.” (Anyone wishing to attend in person “should” register with NMSAC’s Alternate Designated Federal Official by telephone or email “no later than” January 9, which is the date the Notice is supposed to published.) Fortunately, the meeting will also be accessible via a webcast and by a teleconference. The details for arranging in-person or virtual participation in the meeting are included in the Notice, as are the methods for submitting written comments on the agenda items (by the Federal eRulemaking Portal, mail, fax, or hand delivery), which also “should” reach the Coast Guard by the 9, as “should” any request to make an oral presentation (as opposed to speaking during the public comment periods).
The Agenda for January 18 includes briefings/discussions on (1) Maritime Domain Awareness and Information Sharing, (2) Maritime Transportation Security Act (MTSA)/Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) Harmonization, (3) the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) (including TWIC reader developments), as well as a public comment period (from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.). Day 2’s schedule includes briefings/discussions on (1) the upcoming (and long-awaited) updates to the MTSA Regulations (33 CFR sections 101.100 to 106.415), (2) the Global Supply Chain Security Initiative, (3) requirements for certain vessels to station guards while in US ports, and (4) the Underwater Terrorism Preparedness Program, as well as a public comment period (from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.).
Do not assume that the briefings/discussions will occur in the order indicated in the Notice or even on the day indicated. At previous NMSAC meetings, things have been moved around quite a bit. And my sources lead me to expect an additional discussion of the Certain Dangerous Cargo (CDC) Security Initiative. Additionally, be aware that the Notice cautions that the meeting “may close early if all business is finished.” If the agenda items are handled with sufficient dispatch, the public comment periods may start earlier than scheduled. It is highly unlikely that the comment periods will last their full scheduled hour, either. What is likely is that a lot of interesting and important information will become available.
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