|Paul Beatty||US Access Board (staff)|
|Tiffany Bergman||Holland America|
|LCDR Marie Byrd||US Coast Guard|
|Jay Cardinali||Walt Disney Parks and Resorts|
|David Chapman||University of Delaware|
|Steve Cmar||Norwegian Cruise Line|
|Bill Ecker||Cruise Lines International Association|
|Carolyn Gray||Barnes & Thornburg LLP|
|Teresa Jakubowski||Barnes & Thornburg LLP|
|Mike Jones||Carnival Corporate Shipbuilding|
|Vicki Langlois||Disney Cruise Line|
|Lou Nash||US Coast Guard|
|Ron Pettit||Royal Caribbean Cruises|
|Jim Raggio||US Access Board (staff)|
|Kay Strawderman||Carnival Cruise Line|
|CAPT Ted Thompson||Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA)|
|Jan Tuck||Princess Cruises|
|Ed Welch||Passenger Vessel Association (PVA)|
1. Meeting Materials – The following materials were distributed during the meeting:
2. Introduction and Overview – Mr. Raggio gave an overview of what a regulatory assessment is, and the proposed approach and methodology for preparing the regulatory assessment. Mr. Raggio stressed the importance of involving the industry in identifying the impacts of the June 2008 draft of the Passenger Vessel Accessibility Guidelines (PVAG) and estimating the costs of the impacts. Mr. Raggio announced that the Volpe National Transportation Systems Center will assist the Access Board in preparing the regulatory assessment, and aggregating costs over a 30 year period.
Mr. Beatty noted that the Access Board and the Department of Transportation (DOT) plan to issue a joint rule on PVAG. The DOT rule will address access on and off of vessels, including tenders; the effective date that PVAG will apply to new vessels; the administrative authority for non-US flag vessels; and conflicts with international treaties or foreign nation laws.
3. Baseline – The issue of what baseline should be used for identifying impacts of the June 2008 PVAG was discussed. Current cruise ship designs incorporate greater accessibility than earlier designs. The points discussed included:
For example, although cruise ships currently provide pool lifts, this accessibility feature may not have been provided in the absence of the Access Board initiating rulemaking. The attendees offered to identify accessibility features that have been incorporated in the current designs of cruise ships, but may not have been provided in the absence of the Access Board initiating rulemaking.
4. Identification of Impacts – The attendees requested that two additional factors be included for identifying the impacts of the June 2008 PVAG: Do required features adversely affect the level of service? Do the required features have a negative return on investment?
The following factors will be used for identification of impacts:
5. Factors for Categorizing Impacts as Major or Minor – Mr. Raggio explained that unit cost estimates will be developed for all impacts categorized as major; and that alternatives will be considered for requirements that result in major impacts to the extent the alternatives achieve the statutory objectives of equal access and nondiscrimination. Unit costs will be reported for impacts categorized as minor to the extent cost data is readily available. If cost data is not readily available on impacts categorized as minor, the impacts will be described qualitatively. The attendees requested that an additional factor be included for categorizing impacts as major: Results in substantial reduction in service.
The following factors will be used to categorize impacts as major:
The following factors will be used to categorize impacts as minor:
Mr. Raggio noted that some impacts that are identified may not easily fit into the categories of major or minor impacts, and that the need for additional factors for categorizing impacts as major or minor or a third category of impacts will be addressed when such impacts are indentified.
6. Impacts Discussed at Meeting – The attendees identified the following as significant issues for large cruise ships that will likely have major impacts:
Mr. Beatty noted that the drawings did not include information on viewing angles. There was a discussion regarding whether, in assembly areas that are primarily designed for live performances, the better viewing angles are in the first tier or middle tier of the assembly seating area. Mr. Raggio offered that, if the industry is willing to provide sample drawings of assembly areas with information on viewing angles, the Access Board would arrange a meeting with the Department of Justice to further discuss the lines of sight and dispersion requirements in order to better assess the impact of the requirements.
The following requirements were also discussed as having impacts on large cruise ships:
7. Alterations – The PVAG alterations requirements were discussed. The only potential impact identified was on carpet reserves that were purchased when existing ships were constructed and are used to repair or replace damaged carpeting. The carpet reserves may not meet the carpet requirements in V302.2.
8. Cruise Ship Inventory – The attendees requested that the new non-US flag large cruise ships be grouped as “Panamax” vessels (40,000 to 96,000 tons) and “Post-Panamax” vessels (greater than 96,000 tons). The attendees also noted that additional data on cruise ship inventory is available in the Annual Sea Trade Review.
9. Regulatory Flexibility Act Analysis – Mr. Raggio noted that Access Board will also prepare an analysis of the impacts of the June 2008 draft PVAG on small businesses for the Regulatory Flexibility Act. The Small Business Administration (SBA) uses the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes to establish size standards for small businesses. Cruise ships are grouped in NAICS code “483112 Deep Sea Passenger Transportation”, which includes “cruise lines (i.e., deep sea passenger transportation to or from foreign ports).” The SBA has established a size standard of 500 employees maximum for establishments in NAICS code 483112 to be considered small businesses. The U.S. Census Bureau reports that for the 2002 US Economic Census, 88 establishments were identified by NAICS code 483112. Of these 88 establishments, 75 establishments operated for the entire year, and 61 of the establishments that operated for the entire year had less than 100 employees. Mr. Raggio noted that non-US flag cruise ships may not submit reports for the US Economic Census; and that NAICS code 483112 also includes “ship chartering with crew, deep sea passenger transportation to and from foreign ports.” The Access Board will discuss with the SBA the use of the NAICS codes and US Economic Census for estimating the number of non-US flag cruise ships that are small businesses, and report back to the industry.