Regulatory Process Matters

Executive Order 12866: Regulatory Planning and Review

This final rule is a significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866 and has been reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget. The Board has assessed the benefits and costs of the rule. The assessment has been placed in the public docket and is available for inspection. The assessment is also available on the Board’s Internet site. The assessment is summarized below:

Benefits

The benefits of the final rule are not quantifiable, but are significant and are consistent with the President’s New Freedom Initiative. The primary benefit is the fulfillment of civil rights realized by individuals with disabilities. There are 52.5 million Americans with disabilities. Almost one in five adults has some type of disability. Among individuals 15 years old and over, 25 million have difficulty walking or using stairs. The final guidelines will result in newly constructed and altered recreation facilities that are accessible to individuals with disabilities and will enable them to participate in a wide range of recreational opportunities. Individuals with disabilities can also realize significant health benefits by participating in the range of recreational opportunities made accessible as a result of the final guidelines.

Costs

For each type of facility addressed by the final rule, the assessment estimates the number of existing facilities and new facilities constructed annually, identifies the requirements that have cost impacts for new construction and alterations, estimates the unit costs per facility, and calculates the total annual compliance costs. The number of small entities is reported as a percentage of the facilities. To estimate cost impacts, the assessment relies on assumptions where sufficient data is not available. The assumptions are based on interviews with professionals in the affected industries and are disclosed in the assessment. The assumptions cannot be validated and may not reflect the real world. The assumptions may result in under or overestimating the impacts of the final rule. The relevant data for each facility type is presented below.

Amusement Rides

  • Existing Facilities: 377 amusement parks.
  • New Construction: 4 new amusement parks per year.
  • Small Entities: 81 percent of amusement parks.
  • New Amusement Rides: 343 new rides per year; 68 will be platform type rides with stepped entrances.
  • New Construction Impacts: New platform type rides with stepped entrances will need a ramp ($4,000 to $6,700 unit cost) or a platform lift ($12,000 to $15,000 unit cost) to provide an accessible route to the load and unload area; and additional space ($1,175 unit cost) in the load and unload area to provide wheelchair turning space and wheelchair storage space if a ride seat designed for transfer or transfer device is provided. For purposes of estimating the costs of providing access to new rides, the assessment assumes that a transfer device ($5,000 unit cost) would be provided for all new rides. New rides will need a sign ($100 unit cost) at the entrance of the queue or waiting line indicating the type of access provided (e.g., wheelchair access or transfer access).
  • Alterations Impacts: Minimal.
  • Total Annual Compliance Costs: $2.5 million.

Boating Facilities

  • Existing Facilities: 12,000 marinas; no data on boat launch ramps.
  • New Construction: 240 new marinas per year.
  • Alterations: 600 existing marinas per year.
  • Small Entities: 99 percent of marinas.
  • New Construction Impacts: Gangways that are part of an accessible route will need to provide a 1:12 maximum slope or a gangway at least 80 feet long. The unit cost will be site specific. The assessment assumes unit costs will range from $15,000 to $35,000 where the maximum vertical level change is more than 2.5 feet, but less than 10 feet; and $33,000 to $45,000 where the maximum vertical level change is more than 10 feet. The impacts on new accessible boat slips and new accessible boarding piers at new boat launch ramps will be minimal.
  • Alterations Impacts: Alterations to existing boat slips are a primary function area and may trigger provision of an accessible route, unless the additional cost is disproportionate to the overall costs of the alterations or compliance is technically infeasible. The impacts on altered boat slips will be minimal.
  • Total Annual Compliance Costs: $10.8 million to $18.0 million.

Fishing Piers and Platforms

  • Existing Facilities: No data.
  • New Construction: No data.
  • Small Entities: No data.
  • New Construction Impacts: Minimal.
  • Alterations Impacts: Minimal.
  • Total Annual Compliance Costs: Minimal

Golf Courses

  • Existing Facilities: 17,108 golf courses.
  • New Construction: 377 to 524 new golf courses per year.
  • Small Entities: 99 percent of golf courses.
  • New Construction Impacts: Minimal.
  • Alterations Impacts: Minimal.
  • Total Annual Compliance Costs: Minimal.

Miniature Golf Courses

  • Existing Facilities: 7,500 to 10,000 miniature golf courses.
  • New Construction: 150 new custom design and 170 new modular miniature golf courses per year.
  • Small Entities: 100 percent of miniature golf courses.
  • New Construction Impacts: The assessment discusses potential impacts on new custom design courses (low profile courses, challenge courses, and adventure style courses) and new modular courses (indoor courses and outdoor courses). The impacts on new custom design low profile courses will be minimal. For purposes of estimating the costs for making at least 50 percent of the holes on the other custom design courses accessible, the assessment assumes a 10 percent increase in construction costs for new challenge type courses, and a 25 percent increase for new adventure style courses. New indoor modular courses may need to lease additional space to provide an accessible route for at least 50 percent of the holes, and new outdoor modular courses that are not recessed in the ground will have to provide an accessible route for at least 50 percent of the holes. The assessment assumes the additional cost for new modular courses will $5,000 per course.
  • Alterations Impacts: Minimal.
  • Total Annual Compliance Costs: $5.4 million.

Exercise Equipment, Bowling Lanes, and Shooting Facilities

  • Existing Facilities: 17,531 physical fitness facilities; 5,500 bowling centers; and 10,000 shooting facilities. No data on other facilities thatprovide exercise equipment.
  • New Construction: 800 to 1,000 new physical fitness facilities; 25 new bowling centers; and 100 new shooting facilities per year.
  • Small Entities: 99 percent of physical fitness facilities; and 100 percent of bowling centers and shooting facilities.
  • New Construction Impacts: Minimal.
  • Alterations Impacts: Minimal.
  • Total Annual Compliance Costs: Minimal.

Swimming Pools, Wading Pools, and Spas

  • Existing Facilities: 124,577 pools; no data on spas.
  • New Construction: 1,245 new pools per year; 565 new spas per year. The assessment assumes 715 new pools per year have less than 300 linear feet of pool wall and will need at least one means of accessible entry into the pool.
  • Small Entities: Ranges from 15 percent for private hospitals to 100 percent for camps and recreational vehicle parks.
  • New Construction Impacts: For new pools with less than 300 linear feet of pool wall, the assessment assumes that a pool lift will be provided ($4,000 unit cost). For pools with 300 linear feet or more of pool wall, the assessment assumes 250 of these new pools per year will provide an accessible means of entry in the absence of the final rule and will add a pool lift ($4,000 unit cost). The assessment assumes the other new pools with 300 linear feet or more of pool wall will provide a pool lift ($4,000 unit cost) and pool stairs ($2,500 unit cost). The impacts on wading pools will be minimal. The assessment assumes new spas will provide a pool lift ($4,000 unit cost).
  • Alterations Impacts: Minimal.
  • Total Annual Compliance Costs: $8.0 million.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

The final regulatory flexibility analysis has been performed in conjunction with the assessment of the benefits and costs of the final rule required by Executive Order 12866 and the preparation of the preamble for the final rule. The analysis is summarized below.

Need for and Objectives of Guidelines

The Access Board is required to issue accessibility guidelines under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to ensure that new construction and alterations of facilities covered by the law are readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities. Recreation facilities are among the facilities covered by the ADA. Recreation facilities have unique features that are not adequately addressed by the Americans with Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines (ADAAG). The final rule will amend ADAAG to provide supplemental guidelines for making recreation facilities accessible.

Significant Issues Raised During Public Comment Period

The significant comments raised during the public comment period are summarized in the preamble to the final rule, along with the Access Board’s assessment of the comments and the reason for selecting the alternative adopted in the final rule. The alternatives considered in the proposed rule and the final rule, and changes made from the proposed rule for each type of recreation facility are presented in the assessment of the benefits and costs of the final rule required by Executive Order 12866.

Numbers of Small Entities Affected by Final Rule

The numbers of small entities affected by the final rule are reported under the summary of the assessment of the benefits and costs of the final rule required by Executive Order 12866.

Reporting and Recordkeeping Requirements

There are no reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

Steps Taken to Minimize Significant Economic Impact on Small Entities

The Access Board has taken steps to minimize the significant economic impact on small entities for each of the different types of recreation facilities addressed in the final rule. These steps are listed below.

  • Amusement Rides - The final rule allows designers and operators of new amusement rides the choice of providing at least one wheelchair space, or an amusement ride seat designed for transfer, or a transfer device. The final rule limits application of the guidelines to existing rides that are altered. The final rule also allows designers and operators greater flexibility in applying ADAAG to amusement rides.
  • Boating Facilities - The final rule permits gangways that are part of an accessible route to exceed the 1:12 maximum slope requirement for ramps where the total length of the gangways is at least 80 feet (30 feet for smaller facilities with fewer than 25 boat slips). The final rule reduces the number of boat slips required to be accessible in new construction, and modifies the requirements for accessible boat slips in alterations so no more than one boat slip is lost. The final rule also allows designers and operators greater flexibility in applying ADAAG to boating facilities.
  • Fishing Piers and Platforms - The final rule permits gangways that are part of an accessible route to exceed the maximum 1:12 requirement for ramps where the total length of the gangways is at least 30 feet. The final rule also exempts guards that comply with certain sections of the International Building Code from the maximum 34 inch height requirement.
  • Golf Courses - The final rule permits a golf car passage to be provided on golf courses and driving ranges, instead of an accessible route.
  • Miniature Golf Courses - The final rule requires at least 50 percent of holes on miniature golf courses to be accessible, and permits one break in the sequence of accessible holes provided the last hole in the sequence is the last hole on the course. The final rule also allows designers and operators greater flexibility in applying ADAAG to miniature golf courses.
  • Swimming Pools, Wading Pools, and Spas - The final rule permits small pools with less than 300 linear feet of pool wall to provide at least one means of access into the water, and permits water play components to use transfer systems to connect elevated water play components.

Technical Assistance

The Access Board will provide technical assistance materials to help small entities understand the accessibility guidelines for recreation facilities. The Access Board also operates a toll-free technical assistance service to answer questions from the public about the guidelines.

Executive Order 13132: Federalism

The final rule adheres to the fundamental federalism principles and policy making criteria in Executive Order 13132. The final rule implements Federal civil rights legislation that was enacted pursuant to the Congress’ authority to enforce the fourteenth amendment and to regulate commerce. Ensuring the civil rights of groups who have experienced irrational discrimination has long been recognized as a national issue and a proper function of the Federal government. The ADA was enacted "to provide a clear and comprehensive national mandate for the elimination of discrimination against individuals with disabilities . . . and to ensure that the Federal government plays a central role in enforcing the standards established in this chapter on behalf of individuals with disabilities." 42 U.S.C. 12101(b)(1) and (3). The ADA recognizes the authority of State and local governments to enact and enforce laws that "provide greater or equal protection for the rights of individuals with disabilities than are afforded by this chapter." 42 U.S.C. 12201(b). The final rule establishes minimum guidelines. States and local governments can adopt accessibility standards that provide individuals with disabilities equal or greater access to recreation facilities.

The Access Board has consulted with State and local governments throughout the rulemaking process. The National Recreation and Park Association, States Organization for Boating Access, New Jersey Department of Community Affairs, San Francisco Department of Public Works, and the Hawaii Disability and Communication Access Board represented the interests of State and local governments on the Recreation Access Advisory Committee. State and local governments participated in the public hearings and information meetings held on the NPRM and the draft final rule, and submitted more than 70 comments. Most of the comments were centered on boating facilities. The California Department of Boating and Waterways, Oregon State Marine Board, and Michigan Department of Natural Resources were actively involved in providing information and alternative proposals for consideration during the rulemaking. Approximately 30 other State and local governments joined in supporting the various proposals submitted by those States.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act does not apply to proposed or final rules that enforce constitutional rights of individuals or enforce any statutory rights that prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, age, handicap, or disability. Since the final rule is issued under the authority of the Americans with Disabilities Act, an assessment of the rule’s effects on State, local, and tribal governments, and the private sector is not required by the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act.

List of Subjects in 36 CFR Part 1191

Buildings and facilities, Civil rights, Incorporation by reference, Individuals with disabilities, Transportation.


Thurman M. Davis, Sr.,
Chair, Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board.

For the reasons stated in the preamble, part 1191 of title 36 of the Code of Federal Regulations is amended as follows:

PART 1191 — AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT (ADA) ACCESSIBILITY GUIDELINES FOR BUILDINGS AND FACILITIES

1. The authority citation for 36 CFR Part 1191 continues to read as follows:

Authority: 42 U.S.C. 12204.

2. Appendix A to Part 1191 is amended as follows:

a. By revising the title page and pages i, ii, 1A, 2, 3, 4, 4A, 5 through 11,58A, and 76 through 81 as set forth below.

b. By removing the blank page following the title page.

c. By adding pages 4B, 11A, 58B, and 82 through 96 as set forth below.

d. In the appendix to Appendix A by revising pages A1, A1A, A16, and A22 through A25 and adding pages A1B, A16A, and A26 through A32 as set forth below.

The additions and revisions read as follows: