Federal Register Vol. 80, No.150,

Federal Register Volume 80, Issue 150 (August 5, 2015)

Page Range46485-46788
FR Document

80_FR_150
Current View
Page and SubjectPDF
80 FR 46595 - Sunshine Act MeetingsPDF
80 FR 46644 - Sunshine Act Meetings; Unified Carrier Registration Plan Board of DirectorsPDF
80 FR 46612 - In the Matter of Wonder International Education and Investment Group Corp.; Order of Suspension of TradingPDF
80 FR 46526 - Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Fuel Efficiency Standards for Medium- and Heavy-Duty Engines and Vehicles-Phase 2; Notice of Public Hearings and Comment PeriodPDF
80 FR 46603 - Government in the Sunshine Act Meeting NoticePDF
80 FR 46576 - Pesticide Product Registration; Receipt of Applications for New UsesPDF
80 FR 46600 - Notice of Inventory Completion: Museum of Anthropology at Washington State University, Pullman, WAPDF
80 FR 46597 - Notice of Inventory Completion: Tennessee Valley Authority, Knoxville, TNPDF
80 FR 46598 - Notice of Intent To Repatriate Cultural Items: Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission, Olympia, WAPDF
80 FR 46601 - Notice of Intent To Repatriate a Cultural Item: The University of Iowa Museum of Natural History, Iowa City, IAPDF
80 FR 46574 - Pesticide Product Registrations; Receipt of Applications for New Active IngredientsPDF
80 FR 46599 - Request for Nominations for the National Park Service Alaska Region Subsistence Resource Commission ProgramPDF
80 FR 46577 - Pesticide Product Registrations; Receipt of Applications for New UsesPDF
80 FR 46580 - Notice of Agreements FiledPDF
80 FR 46575 - Notification of a Closed Teleconference of the Chartered Science Advisory BoardPDF
80 FR 46575 - Final Reissuance of a General NPDES Permit (GP) for Oil and Gas Exploration Facilities in the Federal Waters of Cook Inlet, AlaskaPDF
80 FR 46527 - Maritime Security ProgramPDF
80 FR 46589 - Submission for OMB Review; 30 Day Comment Request; Post-Award Reporting Requirements Including Research Performance Progress Report Collection (OD/OPERA)PDF
80 FR 46594 - Kentucky; Amendment No. 2 to Notice of a Major Disaster DeclarationPDF
80 FR 46593 - Colorado; Major Disaster and Related DeterminationsPDF
80 FR 46591 - Submission for OMB Review; 30 Day Comment Request; PHS Applications and Pre-Award Reporting Requirements (OD/OPERA)PDF
80 FR 46606 - Records Schedules; Availability and Request for CommentsPDF
80 FR 46539 - Polyethylene Retail Carrier Bags From the Socialist Republic of Vietnam: Final Results of Expedited First Sunset Review of the Countervailing Duty OrderPDF
80 FR 46648 - Proposed Collection; Comment Request for Form 8933PDF
80 FR 46540 - Certain Polyester Staple Fiber From the Republic of Korea: Rescission of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2014-2015PDF
80 FR 46568 - Board on Coastal Engineering ResearchPDF
80 FR 46596 - Notice of Inventory Completion: Oregon State University, Department of Anthropology, Corvallis, OR; CorrectionPDF
80 FR 46525 - Proposed Establishment of Class E Airspace, Cottonwood, AZPDF
80 FR 46595 - Notice of Intent To Repatriate Cultural Items: Portland Art Museum, Portland, ORPDF
80 FR 46586 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Small Business Innovation Research Program-Phase IIPDF
80 FR 46521 - Appliance Standards and Rulemaking Federal Advisory Committee: Notice of Intent To Establish a Working Group for Certain Equipment Classes of Refrigeration Systems of Walk-in Coolers and Freezers To Negotiate a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NOPR) for Energy Conservation StandardsPDF
80 FR 46533 - Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Coastal Fisheries Cooperative Management Act Provisions; American Lobster FisheryPDF
80 FR 46515 - International Fisheries; Pacific Tuna Fisheries; 2015 Bigeye Tuna Longline Fishery Closure in the Eastern Pacific OceanPDF
80 FR 46566 - Community Broadband SummitPDF
80 FR 46583 - General Services Administration Acquisition Regulation; Submission for OMB Review; GSA Mentor-Protégé ProgramPDF
80 FR 46582 - Submission to OMB; General Services Administration Acquisition Regulation; Contractor's Qualifications and Financial Information (GSA Form 527)PDF
80 FR 46584 - General Services Administration Acquisition Regulation; Submission for OMB Review; Preparation, Submission, and Negotiation of Subcontracting PlansPDF
80 FR 46593 - Kansas; Major Disaster and Related DeterminationsPDF
80 FR 46594 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment (THIRA)-State Preparedness Report (SPR) Unified Reporting ToolPDF
80 FR 46595 - Oklahoma; Amendment No. 12 to Notice of a Major Disaster DeclarationPDF
80 FR 46595 - Oklahoma; Amendment No. 11 to Notice of a Major Disaster DeclarationPDF
80 FR 46649 - Pricing for the 2015 American $1 Coin and Currency SetPDF
80 FR 46607 - Excepted ServicePDF
80 FR 46486 - Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing; Technical CorrectionPDF
80 FR 46644 - Proposed Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment RequestPDF
80 FR 46578 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Comment RequestPDF
80 FR 46645 - Decision That Nonconforming Model Year 2000 East Lancashire Coachbuilders Limited Double Decker Tri-Axle Buses (With Volvo B7L Chassis) Are Eligible for ImportationPDF
80 FR 46570 - Erie Boulevard Hydropower, L.P.; Notice of Availability of Environmental AssessmentPDF
80 FR 46573 - Crown Hydro, LLC; Notice of Application Accepted for Filing, Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and ProtestsPDF
80 FR 46573 - Notice of Commissioner and Staff Attendance at North American Electric Reliability Corporation MeetingsPDF
80 FR 46572 - Hiland Partner Holdings, LLC; Notice of ApplicationPDF
80 FR 46570 - Noble Energy, Inc.; Notice of Request for WaiverPDF
80 FR 46571 - Noble Midstream Services, LLC; Notice of Request for WaiverPDF
80 FR 46571 - California Independent System Operator Corporation; Notice of ConferencePDF
80 FR 46571 - Starwood Energy Group Global, L.L.C., Beaver Falls, L.L.C., Syracuse, L.L.C., Hazleton Generation, L.L.C., Startrans IO, LLC, Gainesville Renewable Energy Center, LLC; Notice of Petition for Declaratory OrderPDF
80 FR 46514 - Notice of Availability of Final Interim Policy Guidance for the Capital Investment Grant ProgramPDF
80 FR 46567 - Proposed Collection; Comment RequestPDF
80 FR 46567 - United States Air Force Scientific Advisory Board Notice of MeetingPDF
80 FR 46602 - Notice of Proposed Information Collection; Request for CommentsPDF
80 FR 46603 - Notice of Proposed Information Collection; Request for Comments for 1029-0110PDF
80 FR 46589 - National Cancer Institute; Notice of Open MeetingPDF
80 FR 46591 - National Institute on Aging; Notice of Closed MeetingPDF
80 FR 46601 - Notice of Proposed Information Collection; Request for Comments for 1029-0027PDF
80 FR 46648 - Applications of Dynamic Airways, LLC for Certificate AuthorityPDF
80 FR 46646 - Agency Requests for Approval of a New Information Collection(s): Post-Challenge Year Survey-Mayors' Challenge for Safer People and Safer StreetsPDF
80 FR 46538 - Notice of Public Meeting of the California Advisory Committee To Receive Information Regarding State Compliance With the Help America Vote ActPDF
80 FR 46539 - Notice of Public Meeting of the Hawai‘i State Advisory Committee for the Purpose of Holding a Public Meeting on the Civil Rights of MicronesiansPDF
80 FR 46538 - Notice of Public Meeting of the Michigan Advisory Committee for a Meeting To Discuss Potential Project TopicsPDF
80 FR 46545 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to a Wharf Recapitalization ProjectPDF
80 FR 46543 - Announcing Approval of Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) 202, SHA-3 Standard: Permutation-Based Hash and Extendable-Output Functions, and Revision of the Applicability Clause of FIPS 180-4, Secure Hash StandardPDF
80 FR 46587 - Use of Nanomaterials in Food for Animals; Guidance for Industry; AvailabilityPDF
80 FR 46588 - Over-the-Counter Pediatric Oral Liquid Drug Products Containing Acetaminophen; Guidance for Industry; AvailabilityPDF
80 FR 46485 - Medical Devices; General and Plastic Surgery Devices; Classification of the Internal Tissue MarkerPDF
80 FR 46591 - National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health; Notice of MeetingPDF
80 FR 46604 - Manufacturer of Controlled Substances Registration: Patheon Pharmaceuticals, Inc.PDF
80 FR 46605 - Guidance for Executive Order 13673, “Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces”PDF
80 FR 46604 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Application for a Farm Labor Contractor or Farm Labor Contractor Employee Certificate of RegistrationPDF
80 FR 46531 - Federal Acquisition Regulation; Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces; Second Extension of Time for CommentsPDF
80 FR 46581 - Proposed Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment RequestPDF
80 FR 46519 - Fisheries off West Coast States; Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan; Revision to Prohibited Species RegulationsPDF
80 FR 46516 - Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Atlantic Bluefin Tuna FisheriesPDF
80 FR 46579 - Information Collections Being Reviewed by the Federal Communications Commission Under Delegated AuthorityPDF
80 FR 46518 - Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery; Closure of the Mid-Atlantic Access Area to General Category Individual Fishing Quota Scallop VesselsPDF
80 FR 46531 - Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery; State Waters ExemptionPDF
80 FR 46544 - Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Meeting of the Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Advisory PanelPDF
80 FR 46619 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NASDAQ OMX PHLX LLC; Notice of Designation of a Longer Period for Commission Action on a Proposed Rule Change To Amend and Correct Rule 1080.07PDF
80 FR 46627 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NYSE Arca, Inc.; Notice of Designation of a Longer Period for Commission Action on Proceedings to Determine Whether to Approve or Disapprove a Proposed Rule Change Amending NYSE Arca Equities Rule 5.2(j)(3), Commentary .02 Relating to Listing of Investment Company Units Based on Municipal Bond IndexesPDF
80 FR 46617 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NASDAQ OMX BX, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change to Amend Rule 4703(a)PDF
80 FR 46615 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; BATS Exchange, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change to Delay Implementation of SR-BATS-2015-51PDF
80 FR 46612 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NYSE Arca, Inc.; Order Approving a Proposed Rule Change, as Modified by Amendments No. 1 and No. 2, To List and Trade of Shares of Newfleet Multi-Sector Unconstrained Bond ETF Under NYSE Arca Equities Rule 8.600PDF
80 FR 46625 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NASDAQ OMX PHLX LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change To Amend Rule 3301B(a)PDF
80 FR 46630 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change to Update Rule Cross-References and Make Non-Substantive Technical Changes to Certain FINRA RulesPDF
80 FR 46642 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NYSE MKT LLC; Notice of Filing of Proposed Rule Change Amending the NYSE MKT Trades Market Data Product OfferingPDF
80 FR 46610 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NASDAQ OMX PHLX LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change Relating to a Delay of Implementation Related to the Volume-Based and Multi-Trigger ThresholdsPDF
80 FR 46640 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; The NASDAQ Stock Market LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change To Amend NASDAQ Rule 7015(b) and (g) To Modify Port FeesPDF
80 FR 46628 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; New York Stock Exchange LLC; Notice of Filing of Proposed Rule Change Amending the NYSE Trades Market Data Product OfferingPDF
80 FR 46631 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; The NASDAQ Stock Market LLC; Notice of Filing of Proposed Rule Change Relating to the Listing and Trading of the Shares of the PowerShares High Income Downside Hedged Portfolio a series of the PowerShares Actively Managed Exchange-Traded Fund TrustPDF
80 FR 46620 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; National Stock Exchange, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change Amending Exchange Rule 11.21, Short Sales, To Describe the Exchange's Implementation of Rule 201 of Regulation SHO Under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Relocate Certain Text From Rule 11.11, Orders and Modifiers; and Amending Rule 13.2 To Incorporate by Reference Rules 200, 203 and 204 of Regulation SHOPDF
80 FR 46610 - New Postal ProductPDF
80 FR 46582 - Formations of, Acquisitions by, and Mergers of Bank Holding CompaniesPDF
80 FR 46585 - Agency Forms Undergoing Paperwork Reduction Act ReviewPDF
80 FR 46565 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to a Breakwater Replacement Project in Eastport, MainePDF
80 FR 46492 - Drawbridge Operation Regulations; Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway, Little River to Savannah RiverPDF
80 FR 46541 - Stainless Steel Bar from Spain: Rescission of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2014-2015PDF
80 FR 46565 - Pacific Islands Pelagic Fisheries; American Samoa Longline Limited Entry ProgramPDF
80 FR 46569 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Health Education Assistance Loan (HEAL) Program: FormsPDF
80 FR 46542 - Light-Walled Rectangular Pipe and Tube From Turkey: Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2013-2014PDF
80 FR 46520 - Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Squids in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management AreaPDF
80 FR 46494 - Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; Pennsylvania; Infrastructure Requirements for the 2008 Ozone and 2010 Sulfur Dioxide National Ambient Air Quality StandardsPDF
80 FR 46603 - Hand Trucks and Certain Parts Thereof From ChinaPDF
80 FR 46508 - Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability in Programs or Activities Receiving Federal Financial Assistance (U.S. Airports)PDF
80 FR 46487 - Maine State Plan for State and Local Government EmployersPDF
80 FR 46652 - Medicare Program; Inpatient Psychiatric Facilities Prospective Payment System-Update for Fiscal Year Beginning October 1, 2015 (FY 2016)PDF
80 FR 46648 - Sanctions Actions Pursuant to Executive Orders 13224 and 13582PDF
80 FR 46582 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Notice; CorrectionPDF
80 FR 46730 - Energy Conservation Program: Test Procedures for Clothes WashersPDF
80 FR 46627 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NYSE MKT LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change Extending the Pilot Period Applicable to the Customer Best Execution Auction per Rule 971.1NY Until July 18, 2016PDF

Issue

80 150 Wednesday, August 5, 2015 Contents AIRFORCE Air Force Department NOTICES Meetings: United States Air Force Scientific Advisory Board, 46567 2015-19198 Centers Disease Centers for Disease Control and Prevention NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 46585-46586 2015-19114 Centers Medicare Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services RULES Medicare Program: Inpatient Psychiatric Facilities Prospective Payment System—Update for Fiscal Year Beginning October 1, 2015 (FY 2016), 46652-46728 2015-18903 Civil Rights Civil Rights Commission NOTICES Meetings: California Advisory Committee, 46538 2015-19187 Michigan Advisory Committee, 46538-46539 2015-19185 The Hawaii State Advisory Committee, 46539 2015-19186 Coast Guard Coast Guard RULES Drawbridge Operations: Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway, Little River to Savannah River, 46492-46494 2015-19112 Commerce Commerce Department See

International Trade Administration

See

National Institute of Standards and Technology

See

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

See

National Telecommunications and Information Administration

Community Living Administration Community Living Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Small Business Innovation Research Program Phase II, 46586-46587 2015-19237 Defense Department Defense Department See

Air Force Department

See

Engineers Corps

NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 46567-46568 2015-19199
Drug Drug Enforcement Administration NOTICES Manufacturers of Controlled Substances; Registration: Patheon Pharmaceuticals, Inc., 46604 2015-19173 Education Department Education Department NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Health Education Assistance Loan Program--Forms, 46569-46570 2015-19101 Energy Department Energy Department See

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

RULES Energy Conservation Program: Test Procedures for Clothes Washers, 46730-46788 2015-18330 PROPOSED RULES Appliance Standards and Rulemaking Federal Advisory Committee: Establishment of Working Group for Certain Equipment Classes of Refrigeration Systems of Walk-In Coolers and Freezers, 46521-46525 2015-19235
Engineers Engineers Corps NOTICES Meetings: Board on Coastal Engineering Research, 46568-46569 2015-19242 Environmental Protection Environmental Protection Agency RULES Air Quality Implementation Plans; Approvals and Promulgation: Infrastructure Requirements for the 2008 Ozone and 2010 Sulfur Dioxide National Ambient Air Quality Standards; Pennsylvania, 46494-46508 2015-19090 PROPOSED RULES Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Fuel Efficiency Standards for Medium- and Heavy-Duty Engines and Vehicles—Phase 2; Notice of Public Hearings and Comment Period; Correction, 46526 2015-19297 NOTICES Meetings: Chartered Science Advisory Board; Closed Teleconference, 46575-46576 2015-19257 National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System General Permits: Oil and Gas Exploration Facilities in the Federal Waters of Cook Inlet, AK, 46575 2015-19255 Pesticide Product Registrations: Applications for New Active Ingredients, 46574-46575 2015-19263 Applications for New Uses, 46576-46578 2015-19259 2015-19273 Export Import Export-Import Bank NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 46578-46579 2015-19093 2015-19212 Federal Aviation Federal Aviation Administration PROPOSED RULES Establishment of Class E Airspace: Cottonwood, AZ, 46525-46526 2015-19240 Federal Communications Federal Communications Commission NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 46579-46580 2015-19155 Federal Emergency Federal Emergency Management Agency NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment--State Preparedness Report Unified Reporting Tool, 46594-46595 2015-19220 Major Disaster and Related Determinations: Colorado, 46593-46594 2015-19251 Kansas, 46593 2015-19221 Major Disaster Declarations: Kentucky; Amendment No. 2, 46594 2015-19252 Oklahoma; Amendment No. 11, 46595 2015-19218 Oklahoma; Amendment No. 12, 46595 2015-19219 Federal Energy Federal Energy Regulatory Commission NOTICES Applications: Crown Hydro, LLC, 46573 2015-19207 Hiland Partner Holdings, LLC, 46572-46573 2015-19205 Environmental Assessments; Availability, etc.: Erie Boulevard Hydropower, LP, 46570 2015-19208 Meetings: California Independent System Operator Corp., 46571-46572 2015-19202 Petitions for Declaratory Orders: Starwood Energy Group Global, LLC, Beaver Falls, LLC, et al., 46571 2015-19201 Staff Attendances, 46573-46574 2015-19206 Waiver Requests: Noble Energy, Inc., 46570-46571 2015-19204 Noble Midstream Services, LLC, 46571 2015-19203 Federal Maritime Federal Maritime Commission NOTICES Agreements Filed, 46580-46581 2015-19258 Federal Mediation Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 46581-46582 2015-19167 Federal Motor Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration NOTICES Meetings; Sunshine Act, 46644 2015-19312 Federal Railroad Federal Railroad Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 46644-46645 2015-19213 Federal Reserve Federal Reserve System NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 46582 2015-18572 Formations of, Acquisitions by, and Mergers of Bank Holding Companies, 46582 2015-19115 Federal Transit Federal Transit Administration RULES Final Interim Policy Guidance for the Capital Investment Grant Program; Availability, 46514-46515 2015-19200 Food and Drug Food and Drug Administration RULES Medical Devices; General and Plastic Surgery Devices: Classification of the Internal Tissue Marker, 46485-46486 2015-19177 NOTICES Guidance: Over-the-Counter Pediatric Oral Liquid Drug Products Containing Acetaminophen, 46588-46589 2015-19178 Use of Nanomaterials in Food for Animals, 46587-46588 2015-19179 Foreign Assets Foreign Assets Control Office NOTICES Blocking or Unblocking of Persons and Properties, 46648 2015-18763 General Services General Services Administration PROPOSED RULES Federal Acquisition Regulations: Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces; Second Extension of Time for Comments, 46531 2015-19169 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: General Services Administration Acquisition Regulation—Contractor's Qualifications and Financial Information, 46582-46583 2015-19223 General Services Administration Acquisition Regulation—GSA Mentor--Protege Program, 46583-46584 2015-19224 General Services Administration Acquisition Regulation—Preparation, Submission, and Negotiation of Subcontracting Plans, 46584-46585 2015-19222 Health and Human Health and Human Services Department See

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

See

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

See

Community Living Administration

See

Food and Drug Administration

See

National Institutes of Health

Homeland Homeland Security Department See

Coast Guard

See

Federal Emergency Management Agency

Housing Housing and Urban Development Department RULES Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing; Correction, 46486-46487 2015-19214 Inter-American Inter-American Foundation NOTICES Meetings; Sunshine Act, 46595 2015-19317 Interior Interior Department See

National Park Service

See

Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement Office

Internal Revenue Internal Revenue Service NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 46648-46649 2015-19247 International Trade Adm International Trade Administration NOTICES Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Certain Polyester Staple Fiber From the Republic of Korea, 46540-46541 2015-19246 Light-Walled Rectangular Pipe and Tube From Turkey, 2013-2014, 46542-46543 2015-19095 Polyethylene Retail Carrier Bags From the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, 46539-46540 2015-19248 Stainless Steel Bar From Spain, 46541-46542 2015-19104 International Trade Com International Trade Commission NOTICES Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Hand Trucks and Certain Parts thereof From China, 46603-46604 2015-19080 Meetings; Sunshine Act, 46603 2015-19282 Justice Department Justice Department See

Drug Enforcement Administration

Labor Department Labor Department See

Occupational Safety and Health Administration

NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Application for a Farm Labor Contractor or Farm Labor Contractor Employee Certificate of Registration, 46604-46605 2015-19170 Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces, 46605 2015-19171
Maritime Maritime Administration PROPOSED RULES Maritime Security Program, 46527-46531 2015-19254 NASA National Aeronautics and Space Administration PROPOSED RULES Federal Acquisition Regulations: Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces; Second Extension of Time for Comments, 46531 2015-19169 National Archives National Archives and Records Administration NOTICES Records Schedules, 46606-46607 2015-19249 National Highway National Highway Traffic Safety Administration PROPOSED RULES Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Fuel Efficiency Standards for Medium- and Heavy-Duty Engines and Vehicles—Phase 2; Notice of Public Hearings and Comment Period; Correction, 46526 2015-19297 NOTICES Importation Eligibility of Nonconforming Vehicles; Approvals: Model Year 2000 East Lancashire Coachbuilders Limited Double Decker Tri-Axle Buses (with Volvo B7L Chassis), 46645-46646 2015-19210 National Institute National Institute of Standards and Technology NOTICES Federal Information Processing Standards: Permutation-Based Hash and Extendable-Output Functions, etc., 46543-46544 2015-19181 National Institute National Institutes of Health NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals PHS Applications and Pre-Award Reporting Requirements, 46591-46593 2015-19250 Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Post-Award Reporting Requirements Including Research Performance Progress Report Collection, 46589-46591 2015-19253 Meetings: National Cancer Institute, 46589 2015-19193 National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, 46591 2015-19174 National Institute on Aging, 46591 2015-19192 National Oceanic National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RULES Atlantic Highly Migratory Species: Atlantic Bluefin Tuna Fisheries, 46516-46518 2015-19156 Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska: Squids in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area, 46520 2015-19094 Fisheries of the Northeastern United States: Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery; Closure of the Mid-Atlantic Access Area to General Category Individual Fishing Quota Scallop Vessels, 46518 2015-19150 Fisheries Off West Coast States: Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan; Revision to Prohibited Species Regulations, 46519-46520 2015-19157 International Fisheries; Pacific Tuna Fisheries: 2015 Bigeye Tuna Longline Fishery Closure in the Eastern Pacific Ocean, 46515-46516 2015-19230 PROPOSED RULES Fisheries of the Northeastern United States: Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery; State Waters Exemption, 46531-46533 2015-19149 Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Coastal Fisheries Cooperative Management Act Provisions: American Lobster Fishery, 46533-46537 2015-19233 NOTICES Meetings: Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Advisory Panel, 46544-46545 2015-19148 Permit Applications: Pacific Islands Pelagic Fisheries; American Samoa Longline Limited Entry Program, 46565 2015-19102 Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities Wharf Recapitalization Project, 46545-46565 2015-19184 Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities: Breakwater Replacement Project, Eastport, ME, 46565-46566 2015-19113 National Park National Park Service NOTICES Inventory Completions: Museum of Anthropology, Washington State University, Pullman, WA, 46600 2015-19271 Oregon State University, Department of Anthropology, Corvallis, OR; Corrections, 46596-46597 2015-19241 Tennessee Valley Authority, Knoxville, TN, 46597-46598 2015-19267 Repatriation of Cultural Items: Portland Art Museum, Portland, OR, 46595-46596 2015-19238 The University of Iowa Museum of Natural History, Iowa City, IA, 46601 2015-19264 Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission, Olympia, WA, 46598-46599 2015-19266 Requests for Nominations: Alaska Region Subsistence Resource Commission Program, 46599-46600 2015-19262 National Telecommunications National Telecommunications and Information Administration NOTICES Meetings: Community Broadband Summit, 46566-46567 2015-19229 Occupational Safety Health Adm Occupational Safety and Health Administration RULES State Plans for State and Local Government Employers: Maine; Initial Approval Determination, 46487-46492 2015-18942 Personnel Personnel Management Office NOTICES Excepted Service, 46607-46610 2015-19215 Postal Regulatory Postal Regulatory Commission NOTICES New Postal Products, 46610 2015-19117 Securities Securities and Exchange Commission NOTICES Self-Regulatory Organizations; Proposed Rule Changes: BATS Exchange, Inc., 46615-46617 2015-19133 Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc., 46630-46631 2015-19130 NASDAQ OMX BX, Inc., 46617-46619 2015-19134 NASDAQ OMX PHLX LLC, 46610-46612, 46619-46620, 46625-46627 2015-19128 2015-19131 2015-19136 National Stock Exchange, Inc., 46620-46625 2015-19124 New York Stock Exchange LLC, 46628-46630 2015-19126 NYSE Arca, Inc., 46612-46615, 46627-46628 2015-19132 2015-19135 NYSE MKT LLC, 46627, 46642-46644 2015-19129 2015-17759 The NASDAQ Stock Market LLC, 46631-46641 2015-19125 2015-19127 Suspension of Trading Orders: Wonder International Education and Investment Group Corp., 46612 2015-19311 Surface Mining Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement Office NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 46601-46603 2015-19191 2015-19194 2015-19195 Transportation Department Transportation Department See

Federal Aviation Administration

See

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

See

Federal Railroad Administration

See

Federal Transit Administration

See

Maritime Administration

See

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

RULES Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability in Programs or Activities Receiving Federal Financial Assistance: U.S. Airports, 46508-46514 2015-19078 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Post-Challenge Year Survey--Mayors' Challenge for Safer People and Safer Streets, 46646-46647 2015-19189 Certificate of Authority Applications: Dynamic Airways, Llc for Certificate Authority, 46648 2015-19190
Treasury Treasury Department See

Foreign Assets Control Office

See

Internal Revenue Service

See

United States Mint

U.S. Mint United States Mint NOTICES Pricing for the 2015 American $1 Coin and Currency Set, 46649 2015-19217 Separate Parts In This Issue Part II Health and Human Services Department, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, 46652-46728 2015-18903 Part III Energy Department, 46730-46788 2015-18330 Reader Aids

Consult the Reader Aids section at the end of this issue for phone numbers, online resources, finding aids, and notice of recently enacted public laws.

To subscribe to the Federal Register Table of Contents LISTSERV electronic mailing list, go to http://listserv.access.thefederalregister.org and select Online mailing list archives, FEDREGTOC-L, Join or leave the list (or change settings); then follow the instructions.

80 150 Wednesday, August 5, 2015 Rules and Regulations DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration 21 CFR Part 878 [Docket No. FDA-2015-N-2457] Medical Devices; General and Plastic Surgery Devices; Classification of the Internal Tissue Marker AGENCY:

Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

ACTION:

Final order.

SUMMARY:

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is classifying the internal tissue marker into class II (special controls). The special controls that will apply to the device are identified in this order and will be part of the codified language for the internal tissue marker's classification. The Agency is classifying the device into class II (special controls) in order to provide a reasonable assurance of safety and effectiveness of the device.

DATES:

This order is effective August 5, 2015. The classification was applicable on December 18, 2014.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

David Talley, Center for Devices and Radiological Health, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 66, Rm. G454, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002, 301-796-4861, [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background

In accordance with section 513(f)(1) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the FD&C Act) (21 U.S.C. 360c(f)(1)), devices that were not in commercial distribution before May 28, 1976 (the date of enactment of the Medical Device Amendments of 1976), generally referred to as postamendments devices, are classified automatically by statute into class III without any FDA rulemaking process. These devices remain in class III and require premarket approval, unless and until the device is classified or reclassified into class I or II, or FDA issues an order finding the device to be substantially equivalent, in accordance with section 513(i) of the FD&C Act, to a predicate device that does not require premarket approval. The Agency determines whether new devices are substantially equivalent to predicate devices by means of premarket notification procedures in section 510(k) of the FD&C Act (21 U.S.C. 360(k)) and part 807 (21 CFR part 807) of the regulations.

Section 513(f)(2) of the FD&C Act, as amended by section 607 of the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act (Pub. L. 112-144), provides two procedures by which a person may request FDA to classify a device under the criteria set forth in section 513(a)(1). Under the first procedure, the person submits a premarket notification under section 510(k) of the FD&C Act for a device that has not previously been classified and, within 30 days of receiving an order classifying the device into class III under section 513(f)(1) of the FD&C Act, the person requests a classification under section 513(f)(2). Under the second procedure, rather than first submitting a premarket notification under section 510(k) of the FD&C Act and then a request for classification under the first procedure, the person determines that there is no legally marketed device upon which to base a determination of substantial equivalence and requests a classification under section 513(f)(2) of the FD&C Act. If the person submits a request to classify the device under this second procedure, FDA may decline to undertake the classification request if FDA identifies a legally marketed device that could provide a reasonable basis for review of substantial equivalence with the device or if FDA determines that the device submitted is not of “low-moderate risk” or that general controls would be inadequate to control the risks and special controls to mitigate the risks cannot be developed.

In response to a request to classify a device under either procedure provided by section 513(f)(2) of the FD&C Act, FDA will classify the device by written order within 120 days. This classification will be the initial classification of the device. In accordance with section 513(f)(1) of the FD&C Act, FDA issued an order on April 22, 2013, classifying the Moerae Surgical Marking Pen into class III, because it was not substantially equivalent to a device that was introduced or delivered for introduction into interstate commerce for commercial distribution before May 28, 1976, or a device which was subsequently reclassified into class I or class II.

On May 3, 2013, VasoPrep Surgical (formerly Moerae Matrix, Inc.) submitted a request for classification of the VasoPrep (formerly Moerae) Surgical Marking Pen under section 513(f)(2) of the FD&C Act. The manufacturer recommended that the device be classified into class II (Ref. 1).

In accordance with section 513(f)(2) of the FD&C Act, FDA reviewed the request in order to classify the device under the criteria for classification set forth in section 513(a)(1). FDA classifies devices into class II if general controls by themselves are insufficient to provide reasonable assurance of safety and effectiveness, but there is sufficient information to establish special controls to provide reasonable assurance of the safety and effectiveness of the device for its intended use. After review of the information submitted in the request, FDA determined that the device can be classified into class II with the establishment of special controls. FDA believes these special controls, in addition to general controls, will provide reasonable assurance of the safety and effectiveness of the device.

Therefore, on December 18, 2014, FDA issued an order to the requestor classifying the device into class II. FDA is codifying the classification of the device by adding § 878.4670.

Following the effective date of this final classification order, any firm submitting a premarket notification (510(k)) for an internal tissue marker will need to comply with the special controls named in this final order. The device is assigned the generic name internal tissue marker, and it is identified as a prescription use device that is intended for use prior to or during general surgical procedures to demarcate selected sites on internal tissues.

FDA has identified the following risks to health associated specifically with this type of device, as well as the mitigation measures required to mitigate these risks in Table 1.

Table 1—Internal Tissue Marker Risks and Mitigation Measures Identified Risks and Mitigation Measures Identified risk Mitigation measures Adverse Tissue Reaction Biocompatibility Testing. Sterilization Testing. Shelf Life/Stability Testing. Performance Testing. Labeling. Ineffective Marking Performance Testing. Shelf Life/Stability Testing. Labeling. Improper Use Labeling.

FDA believes that the following special controls, in combination with the general controls, address these risks to health and provide reasonable assurance of safety and effectiveness:

• The device must be demonstrated to be biocompatible. Material names and specific designation numbers must be provided.

• Performance testing must demonstrate that the device performs as intended to mark the tissue for which it is indicated.

• Performance data must demonstrate the sterility of the device.

• Performance data must support the shelf life of the device by demonstrating sterility, package integrity, device functionality, and material stability over the requested shelf life.

• Labeling must include:

○ A warning that the device must not be used on a non-sterile surface prior to use internally.

○ An expiration date/shelf life.

○ Single use only labeling must be labeled directly on the device.

Internal tissue marker is a prescription device restricted to patient use only upon the authorization of a practitioner licensed by law to administer or use the device; see 21 CFR 801.109 (Prescription devices).

Section 510(m) of the FD&C Act provides that FDA may exempt a class II device from the premarket notification requirements under section 510(k) of the FD&C Act, if FDA determines that premarket notification is not necessary to provide reasonable assurance of the safety and effectiveness of the device. For this type of device, FDA has determined that premarket notification is necessary to provide reasonable assurance of the safety and effectiveness of the device. Therefore, this device type is not exempt from premarket notification requirements. Persons who intend to market this type of device must submit to FDA a premarket notification, prior to marketing the device, which contains information about the internal tissue marker they intend to market.

II. Environmental Impact

The Agency has determined under 21 CFR 25.34(b) that this action is of a type that does not individually or cumulatively have a significant effect on the human environment. Therefore, neither an environmental assessment nor an environmental impact statement is required.

III. Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

This final order establishes special controls that refer to previously approved collections of information found in other FDA regulations. These collections of information are subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520). The collections of information in 21 CFR part 807, subpart E, regarding premarket notification submissions have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0120, and the collections of information in 21 CFR part 801, regarding labeling have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0485.

IV. Reference

The following reference has been placed on display in the Division of Dockets Management (HFA-305), Food and Drug Administration, 5630 Fishers Lane, Rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852, and may be seen by interested persons between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, and is available electronically at http://www.regulations.gov.

1. DEN130004: De Novo Request from VasoPrep Surgical (formerly Moerae Matrix, Inc.), dated May 3, 2013. List of Subjects in 21 CFR Part 878

Medical devices.

Therefore, under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and under authority delegated to the Commissioner of Food and Drugs, 21 CFR part 878 is amended as follows:

PART 878—GENERAL AND PLASTIC SURGERY DEVICES 1. The authority citation for 21 CFR part 878 continues to read as follows: Authority:

21 U.S.C. 351, 360, 360c, 360e, 360j, 360l, 371.

2. Add § 878.4670 to subpart E to read as follows:
§ 878.4670 Internal tissue marker.

(a) Identification. An internal tissue marker is a prescription use device that is intended for use prior to or during general surgical procedures to demarcate selected sites on internal tissues.

(b) Classification. Class II (special controls). The special controls for this device are:

(1) The device must be demonstrated to be biocompatible. Material names and specific designation numbers must be provided.

(2) Performance testing must demonstrate that the device performs as intended to mark the tissue for which it is indicated.

(3) Performance data must demonstrate the sterility of the device.

(4) Performance data must support the shelf life of the device by demonstrating sterility, package integrity, device functionality, and material stability over the requested shelf life.

(5) Labeling must include:

(i) A warning that the device must not be used on a non-sterile surface prior to use internally.

(ii) An expiration date/shelf life.

(iii) Single use only labeling must be labeled directly on the device.

Dated: July 30, 2015. Leslie Kux, Associate Commissioner for Policy.
[FR Doc. 2015-19177 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4164-01-P
DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT 24 CFR Part 5 [Docket No. FR-5173-C-06] RIN 2501-AD33 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing; Technical Correction AGENCY:

Office of the General Counsel, HUD.

ACTION:

Final rule, technical correction.

SUMMARY:

This document corrects a typographical error in HUD's final rule on Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing, published on July 16, 2015.

DATES:

Effective: August 17, 2015.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For further information about this technical correction, contact Camille E. Acevedo, Associate General Counsel for Legislation and Regulations, Office of General Counsel, Department of Housing and Urban Development, 451 7th Street SW., Room 10282, Washington, DC 20410-0500; telephone number 202-708-1793 (this is not a toll-free number). Persons who are deaf or hard of hearing and persons with speech impairments may access this number through TTY by calling the toll-free Federal Relay Service at 800-877-8339.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

On July 16, 2015, at 42271, HUD published a final rule to provide HUD program participants with an approach to help them better incorporate into their planning processes the duty to affirmatively further the purposes and policies of the Fair Housing Act, so they can more effectively meet their long-standing fair housing obligations. Under this rule, recipients of HUD funds will prepare an Assessment of Fair Housing (AFH), developed in accordance with requirements provided in the rule, and will submit the AFH to HUD. In detailing submission requirements, the rule explains when different program participants must submit to HUD their first AFH. New regulatory § 5.160 contains submission deadlines for program participants to submit their first AFHs to HUD. Section 5.160(a)(1)(i)(C) in the final rule, which describes the deadline by when consolidated plan participants that are Insular Areas or States must submit their first AFH to HUD, inadvertently omitted the word “year” after “program” and omitted the word “plan” after the second occurrence of the word “consolidated.” Therefore, this document revises 24 CFR 5.160(a)(1)(i)(C) to include these two missing words.

Correction

Accordingly, FR Doc. 2015-17032, Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (FR-5173-F-04), published in the Federal Register on July 16, 2015 (80 FR 42271) is corrected as follows:

On page 42357, revise the first full paragraph in the third column, beginning on the third line of the column (24 CFR 5.160(a)(1)(i)(C)), to read as follows “(C) For consolidated plan participants that are Insular Areas or States, the program year that begins on or after January 1, 2018 for which a new consolidated plan is due, as provided in 24 CFR 91.15(b)(2); and”

Dated: July 29, 2015. Camille E. Acevedo, Association General Counsel for Legislation and Regulations.
[FR Doc. 2015-19214 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4210-67-P
DEPARTMENT OF LABOR Occupational Safety and Health Administration 29 CFR Part 1956 [Docket No. OSHA-2015-0003] RIN 1218-AC97 Maine State Plan for State and Local Government Employers AGENCY:

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Department of Labor.

ACTION:

Notice of initial approval determination.

SUMMARY:

The Maine State and Local Government Only State Plan, a state occupational safety and health plan applicable only to public sector employment (employees of the state and its political subdivisions), is approved as a developmental plan under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 and OSHA regulations. Under the approved Plan, the Maine Department of Labor is designated as the state agency responsible for the development and enforcement of occupational safety and health standards applicable to state and local government employment throughout the state. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) retains full authority for coverage of private sector employees in the State of Maine, as well as for coverage of federal government employees.

DATES:

Effective: August 5, 2015.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For press inquiries: Contact Francis Meilinger, Office of Communications, Room N-3647, OSHA, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone (202) 693-1999; email [email protected]

For general and technical information: Contact Douglas J. Kalinowski, Director, OSHA Directorate of Cooperative and State Programs, Room N-3700, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone (202) 693-2200; email: [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

A. Introduction

Section 18 of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (the “OSH Act”), 29 U.S.C. 667, provides that a state which desires to assume responsibility for the development and enforcement of standards relating to any occupational safety and health issue with respect to which a federal standard has been promulgated may submit a State Plan to the Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health (“Assistant Secretary”) documenting the proposed program in detail. Regulations promulgated pursuant to the OSH Act at 29 CFR part 1956 provide that a state may submit a State Plan for the development and enforcement of occupational safety and health standards applicable only to employers of the state and its political subdivisions (“public employers”).

Under these regulations the Assistant Secretary will approve a State Plan for State and Local Government Only if the Plan provides for the development and enforcement of standards relating to hazards in employment covered by the Plan, which are or will be at least as effective in providing safe and healthful employment and places of employment as standards promulgated and enforced under Section 6 of the OSH Act, giving due consideration to differences between public and private sector employment. In making this determination the Assistant Secretary will consider, among other things, the criteria and indices of effectiveness set forth in 29 CFR part 1956, subpart B.

A State and Local Government Only State Plan may receive initial approval even though, upon submission, it does not fully meet the criteria set forth in 29 CFR 1956.10 and 1956.11, if it includes satisfactory assurances by the state that the state will take the necessary steps, and establishes an acceptable developmental schedule, to meet the criteria within a three year period (29 CFR 1956.2(b)). The Assistant Secretary may publish a notice of “certification of completion of developmental steps” when all of a state's developmental commitments have been met satisfactorily (29 CFR 1956.23; 1902.33 and 1902.34) and the Plan is structurally complete. After certification of a State Plan for State and Local Government Only, OSHA may initiate a period of at least one year of intensive performance monitoring, after which OSHA may make a determination under the procedures of 29 CFR 1902.38, 1902.39, 1902.40 and 1902.41 as to whether, on the basis of actual operations, the criteria set forth in 29 CFR 1956.10 and 1956.11 for “at least as effective” State Plan performance are being applied under the Plan.

B. History of the Present Proceeding

Since 1971, the Maine Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Standards (Bureau), has adopted standards and performed inspections in the public sector (state, county, and municipal employers) as outlined under the provisions of the state's existing enabling legislation: Maine Revised Statutes, Title 26: Labor and Industry. Maine began working on a State and Local Government Only State Plan in 2012 and submitted a draft Plan to OSHA in February of 2013. OSHA reviewed the draft Plan and its findings were detailed in various memoranda and other documents. OSHA determined that the Maine statutes, as structured, and the proposed State Plan needed changes in order to meet the State and Local Government Only State Plan approval criteria in 29 CFR 1956. Maine formally submitted a revised Plan applicable only to public employers for federal approval on May 2, 2013. Over the next several months, OSHA worked with Maine in identifying areas of the proposed Plan which needed to be addressed or required clarification. In response to federal review of the proposed State Plan, supplemental assurances, and revisions, corrections and additions to the Plan were submitted on September 4, 2013 and November 7, 2014. Further modifications were submitted by the state on December 19, 2014. Amendments to Title 26 of the Maine Revised Statutes were proposed and enacted by the Maine Legislature and signed into law by the Governor in 2014. The amended legislation provides the basis for establishing a comprehensive occupational safety and health program applicable to the public employers in the state. The revised Plan has been found to be conceptually approvable as a developmental State Plan.

The OSH Act provides for funding of up to 50% of the State Plan costs, but longstanding language in OSHA's appropriation legislation further provides that OSHA must fund “ . . . no less than 50% of the costs . . . required to be incurred” by an approved State Plan. Such federal funds to support the State Plan must be available prior to State Plan approval. The Fiscal Year 2015 Omnibus Appropriations Act includes $400,000 in additional OSHA State Plan grant funds to allow for Department of Labor approval of a Maine State Plan.

On May 20, 2015, OSHA published a notice in the Federal Register (80 FR 28890) concerning the submission of the Maine State and Local Government Only State Plan, announcing that initial federal approval of the Plan was at issue, and offering interesting parties an opportunity to review the Plan and submit data, views, arguments or requests for a hearing concerning the Plan.

To assist and encourage public participation in the initial approval process, the documents constituting the Maine State and Local Government Only State Plan were and remain available at http://regulations.gov as Docket No. OSHA-2015-0003. A copy of the Maine State Plan was also maintained and is available for inspection in the OSHA Docket Office, U.S. Department of Labor, Room N-2625, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210. This document, as well as news releases and other relevant information, is available at OSHA's Web page at: http://www.osha.gov.

C. Summary and Evaluation of Comments Received

No comments were received.

D. Review Findings

As required by 29 CFR 1956.2 in considering the grant of initial approval to a State and Local Government Only State Plan, OSHA must determine whether the State Plan meets or will meet the criteria in 29 CFR 1956.10 and the indices of effectiveness in 29 CFR 1956.11. Findings and conclusions in each of the major State Plan areas addressed by 29 CFR 1956 are as follows:

(1) Designated Agency

Section 18(c)(1) of the OSH Act provides that a state occupational safety and health program must designate a state agency or agencies responsible for administering the Plan throughout the state (29 CFR 1956.10(b)(1)). The Plan must describe the authority and responsibilities of the designated agency and provide assurance that other responsibilities of the agency will not detract from its responsibilities under the Plan (29 CFR 1956.10(b)(2)). The Maine Department of Labor is designated by Title 26 of the Maine Revised Statutes as the sole agency responsible for administering and enforcing the State and Local Government Only State Plan in Maine. The Maine Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Standards is designated as the sub-agency responsible for the State and Local Government Only State Plan. The Plan describes the authority of the Maine Department of Labor and its other responsibilities.

(2) Scope

Section 18(c)(6) of the OSH Act provides that the state, to the extent permitted by its law, shall under its Plan establish and maintain an effective and comprehensive occupational safety and health program applicable to all employees of the state and its political subdivisions. Only where a state is constitutionally precluded from regulating occupational safety and health conditions in certain political subdivisions may the state exclude such political subdivision employees from further coverage (29 CFR 1956.2(c)(1)). Further, the state may not exclude any occupational, industrial or hazard groupings from coverage under its Plan unless OSHA finds that the state has shown there is no necessity for such coverage (29 CFR 1956.2(c)(2)).

The scope of the Maine State Plan includes any employee of the state, including, but not limited to members of the Maine State Legislature, members of the various state commissions, persons employed by public universities and colleges, and employees of counties, cities, townships, school districts, and municipal corporations. Volunteers under the direction of a public employer or other public corporation or political subdivision will also be covered. No employees of any political subdivision are excluded from the Plan. However, the definition of public employee does not extend to students or incarcerated or committed individuals in public institutions. The Maine Department of Labor will adopt all federal OSHA occupational safety and health standards, and the Plan excludes no occupational, industrial or hazard grouping.

Consequently, OSHA finds that the Maine State Plan contains satisfactory assurances that no employees of the state and its political subdivisions are excluded from coverage, and the plan excludes no occupational, industrial or hazard grouping (Maine State Plan pp. 1-2).

(3) Standards

Section 18(c)(2) of the OSH Act requires State Plans to provide occupational safety and health standards which are at least as effective as federal OSHA standards. A State Plan for State and Local Government Only must therefore provide for the development or adoption of such standards and must contain assurances that the state will continue to develop or adopt such standards (29 CFR 1956.10(c); 1956.11(b)(2)(ii)). A state may establish the same standards as federal OSHA (29 CFR 1956.11(a)(1)), or alternative standards that are at least as effective as those of federal OSHA (29 CFR 2956.11(a)(2)). Where a state's standards are not identical to federal OSHA's, they must meet the following criteria: They must be promulgated through a procedure allowing for consideration of all pertinent factual information and participation of all interested persons (29 CFR 1956.11(b)(2)(iii)); they must, where dealing with toxic materials or harmful physical agents, assure employees protection throughout his or her working life (29 CFR 1956.11(b)(2)(i)); they must provide for furnishing employees appropriate information regarding hazards in the workplace through labels, posting, medical examinations, etc. (29 CFR 1956.11(b)(2)(vii)); and, they must require suitable protective equipment, technological control, monitoring, etc. (29 CFR 1956.11(b)(2)(vii)).

In addition, the State Plan must provide for prompt and effective standards setting actions for protection of employees against new and unforeseen hazards, by such means as authority to promulgate emergency temporary standards (29 CFR 1956.11(b)(2)(v)).

Under the Plan's legislation, Title 26 of the Maine Revised Statutes, the Maine Department of Labor has full authority to adopt standards and regulations (through the Board of Occupational Safety and Health) and enforce and administer all laws and rules protecting the safety and health of employees of the state and its political subdivisions. The procedures for state adoption of federal occupational safety and health standards include giving public notice, opportunity for public comment, and opportunity for a public hearing, in accordance with the Maine Administrative Procedures Act (Title 5, chapter 375 of the Maine Revised Statutes). Maine has adopted state standards identical to federal occupational safety and health standards as promulgated through March 26, 2012 (General Industry) and November 8, 2010 (Construction). The State Plan includes a commitment to update all standards by November 2016. The Plan also provides that future OSHA standards and revisions will be adopted by the state within six months of federal promulgation in accordance with the requirements at 29 CFR 1953.5.

Under the Plan, the Maine Department of Labor (through the Board of Occupational Safety and Health) has the authority to adopt alternative or different occupational health and safety standards where no federal standards are applicable to the conditions or circumstances or where standards that are more stringent than the federal are deemed advisable. Such standards will be adopted in accordance with Title 26 of the Maine Revised Statutes and the Maine Administrative Procedures Act, which includes provisions allowing submissions from interested persons and the opportunity for interested persons to participate in any hearing for the development, modification or establishment of standards (Maine State Plan p. 4).

The Maine State Plan also provides for the adoption of federal emergency temporary standards within 30 days of federal promulgation (Maine State Plan p. 4).

Based on the preceding Plan provisions, assurances, and commitments, OSHA finds the Maine State Plan to have met the statutory and regulatory requirements for initial plan approval with respect to occupational safety and health standards.

(4) Variances

A State Plan must provide authority for the granting of variances from state standards upon application of a public employer or employers which corresponds to variances authorized under the OSH Act, and for consideration of the views of interested parties, by such means as giving affected employees notice of each application and an opportunity to request and participate in hearings or other appropriate proceedings relating to application for variances (29 CFR 1956.11(b)(2)(iv)).

Title 26, Chapter 6, Section 571 of the Maine Revised Statutes includes provisions for the granting of permanent and temporary variances from state standards to public employers in terms substantially similar to the variance provisions contained in the federal OSH Act. The state provisions require employee notification of variance applications as well as employee rights to participate in hearings held on variance applications. A variance may not be granted unless it is established that adequate protection is afforded employees under the terms of the variance.

The state has provided assurances in its developmental schedule that by May 2016, it will adopt regulations equivalent to 29 CFR 1905, OSHA's variance regulations, or provide a citation to currently existing equivalent regulations (Maine State Plan pp. 5 and 13).

(5) Enforcement

Section 18(c)(2) of the OSH Act and 29 CFR 1956.10(d)(1) require a State Plan to include provisions for enforcement of state standards which are or will be at least as effective in providing safe and healthful employment and places of employment as the federal program, and to assure that the state's enforcement program for public employees will continue to be at least as effective as the federal program in the private sector.

a. Legal Authority. The state must require public employer and employee compliance with all applicable standards, rules and orders (29 CFR 1956.10(d)(2)) and must have the legal authority for standards enforcement (Section 18(c)(4) of the OSH Act), including compulsory process (29 CFR 1956.11(c)(2)(viii)). Title 26, Chapters 3 and 6 of the Maine Revised Statutes establishes the duty of public employers to provide a place of employment free of recognized hazards, to comply with the Maine Department of Labor's occupational safety and health standards, to inform employees of their protections and obligations and provide information on hazards in the workplace. Public employees must comply with all standards and regulations applicable to their own actions and conduct.

b. Inspections. A State Plan must provide for the inspection of covered workplaces, including in response to complaints, where there are reasonable grounds to believe a hazard exists (29 CFR 1956.11(c)(2)(i)).

When no compliance action results from an inspection of a violation alleged by an employee complaint, the State must notify the complainant of its decision not to take compliance action by such means as written notification and opportunity for informal review (29 CFR 1956.11(c)(2)(iii)).

Title 26, Chapter 3, Sections 44 and 50 of the Maine Revised Statutes provides for inspections of covered workplaces, including inspections in response to employee complaints, by the Director of the Bureau of Labor Standards. If a determination is made that an employee complaint does not warrant an inspection, the complainant will be notified in writing of such determination. The complainant will be notified of the results of any inspection in writing and provided a copy of any citation that is issued. Employee complainants may request that their names not be revealed (Maine State Plan pp. 5-7).

c. Employee Notice and Participation in Inspection. In conducting inspections, the State Plan must provide an opportunity for employees and their representatives to point out possible violations through such means as employee accompaniment or interviews with employees (29 CFR 1956.11(c)(2)(iii)).

Title 26, Chapter 3, Section 44a of the Maine Revised Statutes provides the opportunity for employer and employee representatives to accompany a Bureau of Labor Standards inspector for the purpose of aiding the inspection. Where there is no authorized employee representative, the inspectors are required to consult with a reasonable number of employees concerning matter of safety and health in the workplace (Maine State Plan p. 6).

In addition, the State Plan must provide that employees be informed of their protections and obligations under the OSH Act by such means as the posting of notices (29 CFR 1958.11(c)(2)(iv)); and provide that employees have access to information on their exposure to regulated agents and access to records of the monitoring of their exposure to such agents (29 CFR 1956.11(c)(2)(vi)).

Through Title 26, Chapter 4, Sections 44 and 45 of the Maine Revised Statutes, the Plan provides for notification to employees of their protections and obligations under the Plan by such means as a state poster, required posting of notices of violation, etc. (Maine State Plan p.8).

Section 44 also authorizes the Director of Labor to issue rules requiring employers to maintain accurate records relating to occupational safety and health. Information on employee exposure to regulated agents, access to medical and exposure records, and provision and use of suitable protective equipment is provided through state standards which will be updated by November 2016 (Maine State Plan p. 3).

d. Nondiscrimination. A state is expected to provide appropriate protection to employees against discharge or discrimination for exercising their rights under the state's program, including provision for employer sanctions and employee confidentiality (29 CFR 1956.11(c)(2)(v)).

Title 26, Chapter 6, Section 570 of the Maine Revised Statutes outlines the provisions that an employer cannot discharge or in any manner discriminate against an employee filing a complaint, testifying, or otherwise acting to exercise rights granted by the Maine Revised Statutes.

The Plan provides that an employee who believes that he or she has been discharged or otherwise discriminated against in violation of this section may, within 30 days after the alleged violation occurs, file a complaint with the Director of the Bureau, alleging discrimination. If, upon investigation, the Director determines that the provisions of this chapter have been violated, the Director shall bring an action in Superior Court for all appropriate relief, including rehiring or reinstatement of the employee to his or her former position with back pay. Within 90 days of the receipt of a complaint filed under this section, the Director shall notify the complainant of his or her determination (Maine State Plan p. 7).

The state has provided assurances in its developmental schedule that by May 2016, it will adopt regulations equivalent to 29 CFR 1977, OSHA's whistleblower regulations, or provide a citation to currently existing equivalent regulations (Maine State Plan p. 13).

e. Restraint of Imminent Danger. A State Plan is required to provide for the prompt restraint of imminent danger situations (29 CFR 1956.11(c)(2)(vii)).

Title 26, Chapter 3, Section 49 of the Maine Revised Statutes provides that the Director may petition the Superior Court to restrain any conditions or practices in any workplace subject to Section 45 in which a danger exists which will reasonably be expected to cause death or serious physical harm immediately or before the danger could be eliminated through the enforcement process (Maine State Plan p. 6).

f. Right of Entry; Advance Notice. A state program is required to have the right of entry to inspect workplaces and compulsory process to enforce such right equivalent to the federal program (Section 18(c)(3) of the OSH Act and 29 CFR 1956.10(e)). Likewise, a state is expected to prohibit advance notice of inspection, allowing exception thereto no broader than in the federal program (29 CFR 1956.10(f)).

Title 26, Chapter 6, Section 566 of the Maine Revised Statutes authorizes the Director of the Bureau, or his or her representatives, to perform any necessary inspections or investigations. The Bureau designates the Division of Workplace Safety and Health to carry out these provisions. Title 26, Chapter 3, Section 44 provides that the Director of the Bureau has the right to inspect and investigate during regular working hours. The inspectors have the right of entry without delay and at reasonable times. If the public employer refuses entry or hinders the inspection process in any way, the inspector has the right to terminate the inspection and initiate the compulsory legal process and/or obtain a warrant for entry. The inspector has the right to interview all parties and review records as they relate directly to the inspection.

Title 26, Chapter 3, Section 46 of the Maine Revised Statutes prohibits advance notice of inspections. Advance notice of any inspection, without permission of the Director of the Bureau, is subject to a penalty of not less than $500 or more than $1,000 or imprisonment for not more than 6 months, or both (Maine State Plan p. 6),

g. Citations, Sanctions, and Abatement. A State Plan is expected to have authority and procedures for promptly notifying employers and employees of violations, including proposed abatement requirements, identified during inspection; for the proposal of effective first-instance sanctions against employers found in violation of standards; and for prompt employer notification of any such sanctions. In lieu of monetary penalties as a sanction, a complex of enforcement tools and rights, including administrative orders and employees' right to contest, may be demonstrated to be as effective as monetary penalties in achieving compliance in public employment (29 CFR 1956.11(c)(2)(ix) and (x)).

Title 26, Chapter 3, Section 45 of the Maine Revised Statutes establishes the authority and general procedures for the Director of the Bureau to promptly notify public employers and employees of violations and abatement requirements, and to compel compliance. If a Bureau inspector believes that a violation of a safety and health standard exists, he or she will issue a written citation report with reasonable promptness. Section 45 provides that when an inspection of an establishment has been made, and the Director of the Bureau has issued a citation, the employer shall post such citation or a copy thereof at or near the location where the violation occurred. Each citation shall be in writing; describe with particularity the nature of the violation and include a reference to the provision of the statute, standard, rule, regulation, or order alleged to have been violated; and fix a reasonable time for the abatement of the violation (Maine State Plan p. 7).

Title 26, Chapter 3, Section 46 of the Maine Revised Statutes contains authority for a system of monetary penalties. Monetary penalties are issued for serious citations. The Director of the Bureau has discretionary authority for civil penalties of up to $1,000 per day the violation continues for repeat and willful violations. Serious and other-than-serious violations may be assessed a penalty of up to $1,000 per violation, and failure-to-correct violations may be assessed a penalty of up to $1,000 per day. In addition, criminal penalties can be issued to public employers who willfully violate any standard, rule or order. An alternative enforcement mechanism that includes administrative orders may be used in limited circumstances (Maine State Plan p. 8).

The state has given an assurance that it will revise its Field Operations Manual regarding inspections so that it, in conjunction with the provisions of the Maine Revised Statutes, is at least as effective as 29 CFR 1903 by January 2016 (Maine State Plan p. 13).

h. Contested Cases. A State Plan must have authority and procedures for employer contests of violations alleged by the state, penalties/sanctions, and abatement requirements at full administrative or judicial hearings. Employees must also have the right to contest abatement periods and the opportunity to participate as parties in all proceedings resulting from an employer's contest (29 CFR 2956.11(c)(2)(xi)).

Title 26, Chapter 6, Section 568 of the Maine Revised Statutes and Code of Maine Rules 12-179, Chapter 1 establish the authority and general procedures for employer contests of violations alleged by the state, penalties/sanctions and abatement requirements. State and local government employers or their representatives who receive a citation, a proposed assessment of penalty, or a notification of failure to correct a violation may within 15 working days from receipt of the notice request in writing a hearing before the Board of Occupational Safety and Health on the citation, notice of penalty or abatement period. Any public employee or representative thereof may within 15 working days of the issuance of a citation file a request in writing for a hearing before the Board on whether the period of time fixed in the citation for abatement is unreasonable. Informal reviews can be held at the division management level prior to a formal contest (Maine State Plan p. 8).

The Director of the Bureau will remain responsible for the enforcement process, including the issuance of citations and penalties, and their defense, if contested. All interested parties are allowed to participate in the hearing and introduce evidence. The Board shall affirm, modify, or vacate the citation or proposed penalty or direct other appropriate relief. Any party adversely affected by a final order or determination by the Board has the right to appeal and obtain judicial review by the Superior Court (Maine State Plan p. 8).

Enforcement Conclusion. Accordingly, OSHA finds that the enforcement provisions of the Maine State Plan as described above meet or will meet the statutory and regulatory requirements for initial State Plan approval.

(6) Staffing and Resources

Section 18(c)(4) of the OSH Act requires State Plans to provide the qualified personnel necessary for the enforcement of standards. In accordance with 29 CFR 1956.10(g), one factor which OSHA must consider in reviewing a plan for initial approval is whether the state has or will have a sufficient number of adequately trained and competent personnel to discharge its responsibilities under the Plan.

The Maine State Plan provides assurances of a fully trained, adequate staff, including two safety officers and one health officer for enforcement inspections, and three safety consultants and one health consultant to provide consultation, training and education services in the public sector. The Plan provides assurances that within six months of plan approval the state will have a fully trained, adequate, and separate staff of compliance officers for enforcement inspections, and consultants to perform consultation services in the public sector. The compliance staffing requirements (or benchmarks) for State Plans covering both the private and public sectors are established based on the “fully effective” test established in AFL-CIO v. Marshall, 570 F.2d 1030 (D.C. Cir. 1978). This staffing test, and the complicated formula used to derive benchmarks for complete private/public sector Plans, are not intended, nor are they appropriate, for application to the staffing needs of State and Local Government Only Plans. However, the state has given satisfactory assurance in its Plan that it will meet the requirements of 29 CFR 1956.10 for an adequately trained and qualified staff sufficient for the enforcement of standards (Maine State Plan pp.11-12).

Section 18(c)(5) of the OSH Act requires that the State Plan devote adequate funds for the administration and enforcement of its standards (29 CFR 1956.10(h)). Maine has funded its state government safety and health program since 1972 solely utilizing state funds. The State Plan will be funded at $800,000 ($400,000 federal 50% share and $400,000 state matching share) during federal Fiscal Year 2015.

Accordingly, OSHA finds that the Maine State Plan has provided for sufficient, qualified personnel and adequate funding for the various activities to be carried out under the Plan.

(7) Records and Reports

State Plans must assure that employers in the state submit reports to the Assistant Secretary in the same manner as if the Plan were not in effect (Section 18(c)(7) of the OSH Act). Under a State and Local Government Only State Plan, public employers must maintain records and make reports on occupational injuries and illnesses in a manner similar to that required of private sector employers under the OSH Act and 29 CFR 1956.10(i). The Plan must also provide assurances that the designated agency will make such reports to the Assistant Secretary in such form and containing such information as he or she may from time to time require (Section 18(c)(8) of the OSH Act and 29 CFR 1956.10(j)).

Maine has provided assurances in its State Plan that all jurisdictions covered by the State Plan will maintain valid records and make timely reports on occupational injuries and illnesses, as required for private sector employers under the OSH Act (Maine State Plan pp. 9-11). The records of occupational injuries and illnesses must be completed and maintained in accordance with the applicable provisions in Code of Maine Rules 12-179, Chapter 6 and Title 26, Chapter 3, Section 44 of the Maine Revised Statutes. Title 26, Chapter 1, Section 2 of the Maine Revised Statutes provides the reporting requirements. The state will provide a comparison of Code of Maine Rules 12-179, Chapter 6 to the recordkeeping regulations contained in 29 CFR 1904 by October 2015, and will amend Title 26, Chapter 1, Section 2 of the Maine Revised Statutes in 2015, to ensure equivalency with 29 CFR 1904 in accord with its developmental schedule (Maine State Plan p. 13).

Maine has also provided assurances in its State Plan that it will continue to participate in the Bureau of Labor Statistics's Annual Survey of Injuries and Illnesses in the state to provide detailed injury, illness, and fatality rates for the public sector. Maine will also provide reports to OSHA in the desired form and will join the OSHA Information System within 90 days of plan approval, including the implementation of all hardware, software, and adaptations as necessary (Maine State Plan p. 11).

OSHA finds that the Maine State Plan has met the requirements of Section 18(c)(7) and (8) of the OSH Act on the employer and state reports to the Assistant Secretary.

(8) Voluntary Compliance Program

A State Plan must undertake programs to encourage voluntary compliance by employers by such means as conducting training and consultation with employers and employees (29 CFR 1956.11(c)(2)(xii)).

The Maine State Plan provides that the Bureau will continue to provide and conduct educational programs for public employees specifically designed to meet the regulatory requirements and needs of the public employer. The Plan also provides that consultations, including site visits, compliance assistance and training classes, are individualized for each work site and tailored to the public employer's concerns. In addition, public agencies are encouraged to develop and maintain their own safety and health programs as an adjunct to but not a substitute for the Bureau enforcement program (Maine State Plan p. 9).

The Bureau currently has a public sector on-site consultation program. Maine will provide an outline of procedures for this program to ensure equivalency with the regulations regarding consultation in 29 CFR 1908, or a timeline for their development by November 2016 (Maine State Plan p. 13).

OSHA finds that the Maine State Plan provides for the establishment and administration of an effective voluntary compliance program.

E. Decision

OSHA, after carefully reviewing the Maine State Plan for the development and enforcement of state standards applicable to state and local government employers and the record developed during the above described proceedings, has determined that the requirements and criteria for initial approval of a developmental State Plan have been met. The Plan is hereby approved as a developmental State Plan for State and Local Government Only under Section 18 of the OSH Act.

In light of the pending reorganization of the State Plan regulations through the streamlining of 29 CFR part 1952 and 29 CFR part 1956, OSHA is deferring any change to those regulatory provisions relating to the Maine State Plan until the streamlining changes take effect. The change to the regulatory text will be accomplished through a separate Federal Register Notice.

The initial approval of a State Plan for State and Local Government Only in Maine is not a significant regulatory action as defined in Executive Order 12866.

F. Regulatory Flexibility Act

OSHA certifies pursuant to the Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) that the initial approval of the Maine State Plan will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. By its own terms, the Plan will have no effect on private sector employment, but is limited to the state and its political subdivisions. Moreover, Title 26, Labor and Industry, of the Maine Revised Statutes was enacted in 1971. This legislation established the Board, whose purpose is to formulate rules that shall, at a minimum, conform with federal standards of occupational safety and health, so the state program could eventually be approved as a State and Local Government Only State Plan. Since 1971 the Maine program for public employers has been in operation under the Maine Department of Labor with state funding and all state and local government employers in the state have been subject to its terms. Compliance with state OSHA standards is required by state law; federal approval of a State Plan imposes regulatory requirements only on the agency responsible for administering the State Plan. Accordingly, no new obligations would be placed on public sector employers as a result of federal approval of the Plan.

G. Federalism

Executive Order 13132, “Federalism,” emphasizes consultation between federal agencies and the states and establishes specific review procedures the federal government must follow as it carries out policies that affect state or local governments. OSHA has consulted extensively with Maine throughout the development, submission and consideration of its proposed State Plan. Although OSHA has determined that the requirements and consultation procedures provided in Executive Order 13132 are not applicable to initial approval decisions under the OSH Act, which have no effect outside the particular state receiving the approval, OSHA has reviewed today's Maine initial approval decision, and believes it is consistent with the principles and criteria set forth in the Executive Order.

H. Effective Date

OSHA's decision granting initial federal approval to the Maine State and Local Government Only State Plan is effective August 5, 2015. Although the state has had a program in effect for many years, modification of the program will be required over the next three years by today's decision. Federal 50% matching funds have been explicitly provided in OSHA's FY 2015 final appropriation. Notice of proposed initial approval of the Plan was published in the Federal Register with request for comment. No comments were received, and OSHA believes that no party is adversely affected by initial approval of the Plan. OSHA therefore finds, pursuant to Section 553(d) of the Administrative Procedures Act, that good cause exists for making federal approval of the Maine State and Local Government Only State Plan effective upon publication in today's Federal Register.

Authority and Signature

David Michaels, Ph.D., MPH, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC, authorized the preparation of this notice. OSHA is issuing this notice under the authority specified by Section 18 of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (29 U.S.C. 667), Secretary of Labor's Order No. 1-2012 (77 FR 3912), and 29 CFR parts 1902 and 1956.

Signed in Washington, DC, on July 28, 2015. David Michaels, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health.
[FR Doc. 2015-18942 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4510-26-P
DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 117 [Docket No. USCG-2015-0343] Drawbridge Operation Regulations; Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway, Little River to Savannah River AGENCY:

Coast Guard, DHS.

ACTION:

Notice of temporary deviation from regulations; request for comments.

SUMMARY:

The Coast Guard is issuing a temporary deviation from the operating schedule that governs the Lady's Island Bridge, across the Beaufort River, Mile 536.0 at Beaufort, SC. This deviation will test a change to the drawbridge operation schedule to determine whether a permanent change to the schedule is needed to reduce vehicular traffic concerns in surrounding communities. This deviation will allow Lady's Island Bridge to close for extended hours during peak morning and afternoon commute hours. The bridge owner, South Carolina Department of Transportation, requested this action to assist in reducing traffic caused by bridge openings.

DATES:

This deviation is effective from 8 a.m. on August 5, 2015 until 6 p.m. on November 3, 2015.

Comments and related material must be received by the Coast Guard on or before September 4, 2015. Requests for public meetings must be received by the Coast Guard on or before September 4, 2015.

ADDRESSES:

You may submit comments identified by docket number USCG-2015-0343 using any one of the following methods:

(1) Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov.

(2) Fax: 202-493-2251.

(3) Mail or Delivery: Docket Management Facility (M-30), U.S. Department of Transportation, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590-0001. Deliveries accepted between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except federal holidays. The telephone number is 202-366-9329.

See the “Public Participation and Request for Comments” portion of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section below for instructions on submitting comments. To avoid duplication, please use only one of these three methods.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

If you have questions on this temporary deviation, call or email Rod Elkins at telephone 305-415-6989, email [email protected] If you have questions on viewing or submitting material to the docket, call Cheryl Collins, Program Manager, Docket Operations, telephone 202-366-9826.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: A. Public Participation and Request for Comments

We encourage you to participate in this rulemaking by submitting comments and related materials. All comments received will be posted, without change, to http://www.regulations.gov and will include any personal information you have provided.

1. Submitting Comments

If you submit a comment, please include the docket number for this rulemaking (USCG-2015-0343), indicate the specific section of this document to which each comment applies, and provide a reason for each suggestion or recommendation. You may submit your comments and material online (http://www.regulations.gov), or by fax, mail or hand delivery, but please use only one of these means. If you submit a comment online via http://www.regulations.gov, it will be considered received by the Coast Guard when you successfully transmit the comment. If you fax, hand deliver, or mail your comment, it will be considered as having been received by the Coast Guard when it is received at the Docket Management Facility. We recommend that you include your name and a mailing address, an email address, or a phone number in the body of your document so that we can contact you if we have questions regarding your submission.

To submit your comment online, type the docket number [USCG-2015-0343] in the “SEARCH” box and click “SEARCH.” Click on “Submit a Comment” on the line associated with this rulemaking. If you submit your comments by mail or hand delivery, submit them in an unbound format, no larger than 81/2 by 11 inches, suitable for copying and electronic filing. If you submit them by mail and would like to know that they reached the Facility, please enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard or envelope. We will consider all comments and material received during the comment period and may change the rule based on your comments.

2. Viewing Comments and Documents

To view comments, as well as documents mentioned in this preamble as being available in the docket, go to http://www.regulations.gov, type the docket number (USCG-2015-0343) in the “SEARCH” box and click “SEARCH.” Click on Open Docket Folder on the line associated with this rulemaking. You may also visit the Docket Management Facility in Room W12-140 on the ground floor of the Department of Transportation West Building, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

3. Privacy Act

Anyone can search the electronic form of comments received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review a Privacy Act notice regarding our public dockets in the January 17, 2008, issue of the Federal Register (73 FR 3316).

4. Public Meeting

As of now, we do not plan to hold a public meeting. You may submit a request for one using one of the three methods specified under ADDRESSES. Please explain why one would be beneficial. If we determine that one would aid this rulemaking, we will hold one at a time and place announced by a later notice in the Federal Register.

B. Basis and Purpose

The Ladys Island in Beaufort, South Carolina has a vertical clearance of 30 feet at mean high water in the closed position. The normal operating schedule is published in 33 CFR 117.911(f). As currently implemented, the draw shall operate as follows:

(1) On Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays:

(i) From 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., the draw need not open; and,

(ii) Between 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., the draw need open only on the hour and half-hour.

(2) At all other times the draw shall open on signal.

This schedule has been in effect since Dec. 16, 1985.

For the following reasons the Coast Guard is testing a new schedule for the Lady's Island Bridge:

The City of Beaufort, South Carolina and South Carolina Department of Transportation have requested that the U.S. Coast Guard change the regulation of this bridge as it has negatively impacted the City of Beaufort and surrounding communities. According to both the City of Beaufort and the South Carolina Department of Transportation, vehicle traffic in downtown Beaufort has increased substantially over the last few years and city officials are anticipating additional growth in this area which will produce additional vehicle traffic. As the Lady's Island Bridge is located just west of the city, each time it opens vehicle traffic is at a standstill and at times takes longer than a 1/2 hour to clear; thereby, making some vehicles wait for two bridge openings. This temporary deviation is intended to test a new bridge operation schedule to reduce traffic caused by bridge openings. The bridge owner, South Carolina Department of Transportation, has reviewed the City of Beaufort's request to change the operating schedule and has asked the Coast Guard to pursue recommended changes. In the event the test proves successful, the Coast Guard will issue a further rule making this change permanent.

This deviation will allow the Lady's Island Bridge in Beaufort, South Carolina to remain closed to navigation from 6:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. and from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. the bridge will open on the top of the hour. At all other times the bridge will open on demand.

Any vessel that can safely transit under the Lady's Island Bridge while closed may continue to navigate under the bridge during this deviation.

In accordance with 33 CFR 117.35(e), the drawbridge must return to its regular operating schedule immediately at the end of this temporary deviation's effective period. This deviation from the operating regulations is authorized under 33 CFR 117.35.

Dated: July 24, 2015. Barry Dragon, Bridge Administrator, U.S. Coast Guard, Seventh Coast Guard District.
[FR Doc. 2015-19112 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-04-P
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R03-OAR-2014-0910; FRL-9931-80-Region 3] Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; Pennsylvania; Infrastructure Requirements for the 2008 Ozone and 2010 Sulfur Dioxide National Ambient Air Quality Standards AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is approving portions of two State Implementation Plan (SIP) revisions submitted by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania through the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP) pursuant to the Clean Air Act (CAA). Whenever new or revised National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) are promulgated, the CAA requires states to submit a plan for the implementation, maintenance, and enforcement of such NAAQS. The plan is required to address basic program elements, including but not limited to regulatory structure, monitoring, modeling, legal authority, and adequate resources necessary to assure implementation, maintenance, and enforcement of the NAAQS. These elements are referred to as infrastructure requirements. PADEP made submittals addressing the infrastructure requirements for the 2008 ozone NAAQS and the 2010 sulfur dioxide (SO2) primary NAAQS.

DATES:

This final rule is effective on September 4, 2015.

ADDRESSES:

EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket ID Number EPA-R03-OAR-2014-0910. All documents in the docket are listed in the www.regulations.gov Web site. Although listed in the electronic docket, some information is not publicly available, i.e., confidential business information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such as copyrighted material, is not placed on the Internet and will be publicly available only in hard copy form. Publicly available docket materials are available either electronically through www.regulations.gov or in hard copy for public inspection during normal business hours at the Air Protection Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region III, 1650 Arch Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19103. Copies of the State submittal are available at the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, Bureau of Air Quality Control, P. O. Box 8468, 400 Market Street, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17105.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Ruth Knapp, (215) 814-2191, or by email at [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Summary of SIP Revision

On March 27, 2008 (73 FR 16436), EPA promulgated a revised ozone NAAQS based on 8-hour average concentrations. EPA revised the level of the 8-hour ozone NAAQS from 0.08 parts per million (ppm) to 0.075 ppm. On June 22, 2010 (75 FR 35520), EPA promulgated a 1-hour primary SO2 NAAQS at a level of 75 parts per billion (ppb), based on a 3-year average of the annual 99th percentile of 1-hour daily maximum concentrations. Pursuant to section 110(a)(1) of the CAA, states are required to submit SIPs meeting the applicable requirements of section 110(a)(2) within three years after promulgation of a new or revised NAAQS or within such shorter period as EPA may prescribe.

On July 15, 2014, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, through the PADEP, submitted SIP revisions that address the infrastructure elements specified in section 110(a)(2) of the CAA necessary to implement, maintain, and enforce the 2008 ozone NAAQS and the 2010 SO2 NAAQS. On February 6, 2015 (80 FR 6672), EPA published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPR) for Pennsylvania proposing approval of portions of both SIP revisions as well as portions of SIP submittals for other NAAQS.1 In the NPR, EPA proposed approval of Pennsylvania's submissions addressing the following infrastructure elements: Section 110(a)(2)(A), (B), (C), (D)(i)(II) (prevention of significant deterioration), (D)(ii), (E), (F), (G), (H), (J), (K), (L), and (M).

1 On July 15, 2014, PADEP also submitted SIP revisions addressing the infrastructure requirements for the 2010 nitrogen dioxide (NO2) NAAQS and the 2012 fine particulate matter (PM2.5) NAAQS. In the February 6, 2015 NPR, EPA also proposed approval of portions of these infrastructure SIPs. Because EPA did not receive adverse comments applicable to Pennsylvania's infrastructure SIPs for the 2010 NO2 NAAQS or the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS or applicable to EPA's proposed approval of those specific SIPs, EPA took final action to approve portions of the infrastructure SIPs for the 2010 NO2 NAAQS and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS on May 8, 2015. 80 FR 26461. Thus, this final action only addresses the July 15, 2014 infrastructure SIPs PADEP submitted addressing the 2008 ozone NAAQS and the 2010 SO2 NAAQS.

Pennsylvania's July 15, 2014 infrastructure SIP submittals for the 2008 ozone NAAQS and the 2010 SO2 NAAQS did not contain any provisions addressing section 110(a)(2)(I) which pertains to the nonattainment requirements of part D, Title I of the CAA, because this element is not required to be submitted by the 3-year submission deadline of section 110(a)(1) and will be addressed in a separate process. In addition, Pennsylvania's July 15, 2014 infrastructure SIP submittals for the 2008 ozone NAAQS and the 2010 SO2 NAAQS did not contain any provisions addressing CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I), and therefore EPA's February 6, 2015 NPR did not propose any action on the SIP submittals for section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) for either SIP submittal. Thus, this rulemaking action likewise does not include action on CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) for either the 2008 ozone NAAQS or the 2010 SO2 NAAQS because PADEP's July 15, 2014 infrastructure SIP submittals did not include provisions for this element. Finally, at this time, EPA is not taking action on section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) (which addresses visibility protection) for the 2008 ozone or 2010 SO2 NAAQS as explained in the NPR. Although Pennsylvania's July 15, 2014 infrastructure SIP submittals for the 2008 ozone NAAQS and the 2010 SO2 NAAQS referred to Pennsylvania's regional haze SIP to address section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) for visibility protection, EPA intends to take later, separate action on Pennsylvania's SIP submittals for these elements as explained in the NPR and the Technical Support Document (TSD) which accompanied the NPR.

The rationale supporting EPA's proposed rulemaking action approving portions of the July 15, 2014 infrastructure SIP submittals for the 2008 ozone and 2010 SO2 NAAQS, including the scope of infrastructure SIPs in general, is explained in the NPR and the TSD accompanying the NPR and will not be restated here. The NPR and TSD are available in the docket for this rulemaking at www.regulations.gov, Docket ID Number EPA-R03-OAR-2014-0910.2 EPA received public comments on the NPR. Summaries of the comments as well as EPA's responses are in section II of this rulemaking notice. EPA's responses provide further explanation and rationale where appropriate to support the final action approving portions of the July 15, 2014 infrastructure SIPs.

2 EPA's final rulemaking action on Pennsylvania's infrastructure SIP revisions for the 2010 NO2 NAAQS and the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS can also be found in this docket with Docket ID Number EPA-R03-OAR-2014-0910.

II. Public Comments and EPA's Responses

EPA received substantive comments from two commenters, the State of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) and the Sierra Club, on the February 6, 2015 proposed rulemaking action on Pennsylvania's 2008 ozone and 2010 SO2 infrastructure SIP revisions. The Sierra Club's comments on the NPR include general comments on infrastructure SIP requirements for emission limitations and specific comments on emission limitations to address the 2010 SO2 NAAQS and the 2008 ozone NAAQS. A full set of all comments is provided in the docket for today's final rulemaking action.

A. NJDEP

Comment: NJDEP asserts that Pennsylvania's infrastructure SIP is deficient because it does not include any information relating to Pennsylvania's “good neighbor” obligation to address CAA section 110(a)(2)(D).3 NJDEP asserts the ability of downwind states including New Jersey to attain the 2008 ozone NAAQS is substantially impacted by interstate transport of pollution from Pennsylvania. NJDEP asserts recent EPA modeling for the 2008 ozone NAAQS demonstrates Pennsylvania significantly contributes to ozone nonattainment areas in New Jersey and other states. New Jersey further asserts that EPA must “make a finding that Pennsylvania has failed to submit a SIP that complies with Section 110(a)(2)(D) of the Clean Air Act” because Pennsylvania did not make a submission to address 110(a)(2)(D).

3 EPA believes NJDEP refers specifically to CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) which addresses interstate transport of pollution and not to section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) which addresses visibility protection and prevention of significant deterioration.

Response: In this rulemaking EPA is not taking any final action with respect to the provisions in section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I)—the portion of the good neighbor provision which addresses emissions that significantly contribute to nonattainment or interfere with maintenance of the NAAQS in another state. In its July 15, 2014 infrastructure SIP revisions for several NAAQS, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania did not include any provisions in its SIP revision submittals to address the requirements of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I). In the NPR, EPA did not propose to take any action with respect to Pennsylvania's obligations pursuant to section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) for the July 15, 2014 infrastructure SIP submittals and is not, in this rulemaking action, taking any final action on the 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) obligations.

Because Pennsylvania did not make a submission in its July 15, 2014 SIP submittals to address the requirements of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I), EPA is not required to have proposed or to take final SIP approval or disapproval action on this element under section 110(k) of the CAA. In this case, there has been no substantive submission for EPA to evaluate under section 110(k). EPA interprets its authority under section 110(k)(3) of the CAA as affording EPA the discretion to approve, or conditionally approve, individual elements of Pennsylvania's infrastructure SIP submissions, separate and apart from any action with respect to the requirements of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) of the CAA. EPA views discrete infrastructure SIP requirements in section 110(a)(2), such as the requirements of 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I), as severable from the other infrastructure elements and interprets section 110(k)(3) as allowing it to act on individual severable measures in a plan submission.

EPA acknowledges NJDEP's concern for the interstate transport of air pollutants and agrees in general that sections 110(a)(1) and (a)(2) of the CAA require states to submit, within three years of promulgation of a new or revised NAAQS, a plan which addresses cross-state air pollution under section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I). However, in this rulemaking, EPA is only approving portions of Pennsylvania's infrastructure SIP submissions for the 2008 ozone and 2010 SO2 NAAQS which did not include provisions for 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) for interstate transport. Findings of failure to submit a SIP submission for a NAAQS addressing a specific element, such as CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I), would need to occur in separate rulemakings. As that issue was not addressed in the February 6, 2015 NPR and is therefore not pertinent to this rulemaking, EPA provides no further response. Pennsylvania's obligations regarding interstate transport of ozone pollution for the 2008 ozone NAAQS will be addressed in another rulemaking.

B. Sierra Club General Comments on Emission Limitations 1. The Plain Language of the CAA

Comment 1: Sierra Club (hereafter referred to as Commenter) contends that the plain language of section 110(a)(2)(A) of the CAA, legislative history of the CAA, case law, EPA regulations such as 40 CFR 51.112(a), and EPA interpretations in rulemakings require the inclusion of enforceable emission limits in an infrastructure SIP to aid in attaining and maintaining the NAAQS and contends an infrastructure SIP must be disapproved where emission limits are inadequate to prevent exceedances of the NAAQS. The Commenter states EPA may not approve an infrastructure SIP that fails to ensure attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS.

The Commenter states that the main objective of the infrastructure SIP process “is to ensure that all areas of the country meet the NAAQS” and states that nonattainment areas are addressed through “nonattainment SIPs.” The Commenter asserts the NAAQS “are the foundation upon which air emission standards for the entire country are set” including specific emission limitations for most large stationary sources, such as coal-fired power plants. The Commenter discusses the CAA's framework whereby states have primary responsibility to assure air quality within the state pursuant to CAA section 107(a) which the states carry out through SIPs such as infrastructure SIPs required by section 110(a)(2). The Commenter also states that on its face the CAA requires infrastructure SIPs “to be adequate to prevent exceedances of the NAAQS.” In support, the Commenter quotes the language in section 110(a)(1) which requires states to adopt a plan for implementation, maintenance, and enforcement of the NAAQS and the language in section 110(a)(2)(A) which requires SIPs to include enforceable emissions limitations as may be necessary to meet the requirements of the CAA which the Commenter claims includes attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS. The Commenter notes the CAA definition of emission limit and reads these CAA provisions together to require “enforceable emission limits on source emissions sufficient to ensure maintenance of the NAAQS.”

Response 1: EPA disagrees that section 110 is clear “on its face” and must be interpreted in the manner suggested by the Commenter. As we have previously explained in response to the Commenter's similar comments on EPA's action approving other states' infrastructure SIPs, section 110 is only one provision that is part of the complicated structure governing implementation of the NAAQS program under the CAA, as amended in 1990, and it must be interpreted in the context of not only that structure, but also of the historical evolution of that structure.4

4See 80 FR 11557 (March 4, 2015) (approval of Virginia SO2 infrastructure SIP); 79 FR 62022 (October 16, 2014) (approval of West Virginia SO2 infrastructure SIP); 79 FR 19001 (April 7, 2014) (approval of West Virginia ozone infrastructure SIP); and 79 FR 17043 (March 27, 2014) (approval of Virginia ozone infrastructure SIP).

EPA interprets infrastructure SIPs as more general planning SIPs, consistent with the CAA as understood in light of its history and structure. When Congress enacted the CAA in 1970, it did not include provisions requiring states and the EPA to label areas as attainment or nonattainment. Rather, states were required to include all areas of the state in “air quality control regions” (AQCRs) and section 110 set forth the core substantive planning provisions for these AQCRs. At that time, Congress anticipated that states would be able to address air pollution quickly pursuant to the very general planning provisions in section 110 and could bring all areas into compliance with a new NAAQS within five years. Moreover, at that time, section 110(a)(2)(A)(i) specified that the section 110 plan provide for “attainment” of the NAAQS and section 110(a)(2)(B) specified that the plan must include “emission limitations, schedules, and timetables for compliance with such limitations, and such other measures as may be necessary to insure attainment and maintenance [of the NAAQS].”

In 1977, Congress recognized that the existing structure was not sufficient and many areas were still violating the NAAQS. At that time, Congress for the first time added provisions requiring states and EPA to identify whether areas of a state were violating the NAAQS (i.e., were nonattainment) or were meeting the NAAQS (i.e., were attainment) and established specific planning requirements in section 172 for areas not meeting the NAAQS. In 1990, many areas still had air quality not meeting the NAAQS and Congress again amended the CAA and added yet another layer of more prescriptive planning requirements for each of the NAAQS. At that same time, Congress modified section 110 to remove references to the section 110 SIP providing for attainment, including removing pre-existing section 110(a)(2)(A) in its entirety and renumbering subparagraph (B) as section 110(a)(2)(A). Additionally, Congress replaced the clause “as may be necessary to insure attainment and maintenance [of the NAAQS]” with “as may be necessary or appropriate to meet the applicable requirements of this chapter.” Thus, the CAA has significantly evolved in the more than 40 years since it was originally enacted. While at one time section 110 of the CAA did provide the only detailed SIP planning provisions for states and specified that such plans must provide for attainment of the NAAQS, under the structure of the current CAA, section 110 is only the initial stepping-stone in the planning process for a specific NAAQS. More detailed, later-enacted provisions govern the substantive planning process, including planning for attainment of the NAAQS.

Thus, EPA believes that section 110 of the CAA is only one provision that is part of the complicated structure governing implementation of the NAAQS program under the CAA, as amended in 1990, and it must be interpreted in the context of that structure and the historical evolution of that structure. In light of the revisions to section 110 since 1970 and the later-promulgated and more specific planning requirements of the CAA, EPA reasonably interprets the requirement in section 110(a)(2)(A) of the CAA that the plan provide for “implementation, maintenance and enforcement” to mean that the SIP must contain enforceable emission limits that will aid in attaining and/or maintaining the NAAQS and that the state demonstrate that it has the necessary tools to implement and enforce a NAAQS, such as adequate state personnel and an enforcement program. EPA has interpreted the requirement for emission limitations in section 110 to mean that the state may rely on measures already in place to address the pollutant at issue or any new control measures that the state may choose to submit. Finally, as EPA stated in the Infrastructure SIP Guidance which specifically provides guidance to states in addressing the 2008 ozone and 2010 SO2 NAAQS, “[t]he conceptual purpose of an infrastructure SIP submission is to assure that the air agency's SIP contains the necessary structural requirements for the new or revised NAAQS, whether by establishing that the SIP already contains the necessary provisions, by making a substantive SIP revision to update the SIP, or both.” Infrastructure SIP Guidance at p. 2.5

5 Thus, EPA disagrees with the Commenter's general assertion that the main objective of infrastructure SIPs is to ensure all areas of the country meet the NAAQS, as we believe the infrastructure SIP process is the opportunity to review the structural requirements of a state's air program. While the NAAQS can be a foundation upon which emission limitations are set, as explained in responses to subsequent comments, these emission limitations are generally set in the attainment planning process envisioned by part D of title I of the CAA, including, but not limited to, CAA sections 172, 181-182, and 191-192.

The Commenter makes general allegations that Pennsylvania does not have sufficient protective measures to prevent ozone violations/exceedances and SO2 NAAQS exceedances. EPA addressed the adequacy of Pennsylvania's infrastructure SIP for 110(a)(2)(A) purposes to meet applicable requirements of the CAA in the TSD accompanying the February 6, 2015 NPR and explained why the SIP includes enforceable emission limitations and other control measures necessary for maintenance of the 2008 ozone and 2010 SO2 NAAQS throughout the Commonwealth.6

6 The TSD for this action is available on line at www.regulations.gov, Docket ID Number EPA-R03-OAR-2014-0910.

2. The Legislative History of the CAA

Comment 2: The Commenter cites two excerpts from the legislative history of the 1970 CAA claiming they support an interpretation that SIP revisions under CAA section 110 must include emissions limitations sufficient to show maintenance of the NAAQS in all areas of the state. The Commenter also contends that the legislative history of the CAA supports the interpretation that infrastructure SIPs under section 110(a)(2) must include enforceable emission limitations, citing the Senate Committee Report and the subsequent Senate Conference Report accompanying the 1970 CAA.

Response 2: As provided in the previous response, the CAA, as enacted in 1970, including its legislative history, cannot be interpreted in isolation from the later amendments that refined that structure and deleted relevant language from section 110 concerning demonstrating attainment. See also 79 FR at 17046 (responding to comments on Virginia's ozone infrastructure SIP). In any event, the two excerpts of legislative history the Commenter cites merely provide that states should include enforceable emission limits in their SIPs, and they do not mention or otherwise address whether states are required to include maintenance plans for all areas of the state as part of the infrastructure SIP. As provided in response to another comment in this rulemaking, the TSD for the proposed rule explains why the Pennsylvania SIP includes enforceable emissions limitations for ozone precursors and for SO2 for the relevant areas.

3. Case Law

Comment 3: The Commenter also discusses several cases applying the CAA which the Commenter claims support its contention that courts have been clear that section 110(a)(2)(A) requires enforceable emissions limits in infrastructure SIPs to prevent exceedances of the NAAQS. The Commenter first cites to language in Train v. NRDC, 421 U.S. 60, 78 (1975), addressing the requirement for “emission limitations” and stating that emission limitations “are specific rules to which operators of pollution sources are subject, and which, if enforced, should result in ambient air which meet the national standards.” The Commenter also cites to Pennsylvania Dept. of Envtl. Resources v. EPA, 932 F.2d 269, 272 (3d Cir. 1991) for the proposition that the CAA directs EPA to withhold approval of a SIP where it does not ensure maintenance of the NAAQS, and to Mision Industrial, Inc. v. EPA, 547 F.2d 123, 129 (1st Cir. 1976), which quoted section 110(a)(2)(B) of the CAA of 1970. The Commenter contends that the 1990 Amendments do not alter how courts have interpreted the requirements of section 110, quoting Alaska Dept. of Envtl. Conservation v. EPA, 540 U.S. 461, 470 (2004) which in turn quoted section 110(a)(2)(A) of the CAA and also stated that “SIPs must include certain measures Congress specified” to ensure attainment of the NAAQS. The Commenter also quotes several additional opinions in this vein. Mont. Sulphur & Chem. Co. v. EPA, 666 F.3d 1174, 1180 (9th Cir. 2012) (“The Clean Air Act directs states to develop implementation plans—SIPs—that `assure' attainment and maintenance of [NAAQS] through enforceable emissions limitations”); Hall v. EPA 273 F.3d 1146, 1153 (9th Cir. 2001) (“Each State must submit a [SIP] that specif[ies] the manner in which [NAAQS] will be achieved and maintained within each air quality control region in the State”); Conn. Fund for Env't, Inc. v. EPA, 696 F.2d 169, 172 (D.C. Cir. 1982) (CAA requires SIPs to contain “measures necessary to ensure attainment and maintenance of NAAQS”). Finally, the Commenter cites Mich. Dept. of Envtl. Quality v. Browner, 230 F.3d 181 (6th Cir. 2000) for the proposition that EPA may not approve a SIP revision that does not demonstrate how the rules would not interfere with attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS.

Response 3: None of the cases the Commenter cites support its contention that section 110(a)(2)(A) is clear that infrastructure SIPs must include detailed plans providing for attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS in all areas of the state, nor do they shed light on how section 110(a)(2)(A) may reasonably be interpreted. With the exception of Train, none of the cases the Commenter cites concerned the interpretation of CAA section 110(a)(2)(A) (or section 110(a)(2)(B) of the pre-1990 Act). Rather, the courts reference section 110(a)(2)(A) (or section 110(a)(2)(B) of the pre-1990 CAA) in the background sections of decisions in the context of a challenge to an EPA action on revisions to a SIP that was required and approved or disapproved as meeting other provisions of the CAA or in the context of an enforcement action.

In Train, 421 U.S. 60, the Court was addressing a state revision to an attainment plan submission made pursuant to section 110 of the CAA, the sole statutory provision at that time regulating such submissions. The issue in that case concerned whether changes to requirements that would occur before attainment was required were variances that should be addressed pursuant to the provision governing SIP revisions or were “postponements” that must be addressed under section 110(f) of the CAA of 1970, which contained prescriptive criteria. The Court concluded that EPA reasonably interpreted section 110(f) not to restrict a state's choice of the mix of control measures needed to attain the NAAQS and that revisions to SIPs that would not impact attainment of the NAAQS by the attainment date were not subject to the limits of section 110(f). Thus the issue was not whether a section 110 SIP needs to provide for attainment or whether emissions limits providing such are needed as part of the SIP; rather the issue was which statutory provision governed when the state wanted to revise the emission limits in its SIP if such revision would not impact attainment or maintenance of the NAAQS. To the extent the holding in the case has any bearing on how section 110(a)(2)(A) might be interpreted, it is important to realize that in 1975, when the opinion was issued, section 110(a)(2)(B) (the predecessor to section 110(a)(2)(A)) expressly referenced the requirement to attain the NAAQS, a reference that was removed in 1990.

The decision in Pennsylvania Dept. of Envtl. Resources was also decided based on the pre-1990 provision of the CAA. At issue was whether EPA properly rejected a revision to an approved plan where the inventories relied on by the state for the updated submission had gaps. The Court quoted section 110(a)(2)(B) of the pre-1990 CAA in support of EPA's disapproval, but did not provide any interpretation of that provision. Yet, even if the Court had interpreted that provision, EPA notes that it was modified by Congress in 1990; thus, this decision has little bearing on the issue here.

At issue in Mision Industrial, 547 F.2d 123, was the definition of “emissions limitation,” not whether section 110 requires the state to demonstrate how all areas of the state will attain and maintain the NAAQS as part of their infrastructure SIPs. The language from the opinion the Commenter quotes does not interpret but rather merely describes section 110(a)(2)(A). The Commenter does not raise any concerns about whether the measures relied on by the Commonwealth in the infrastructure SIPs are “emissions limitations” and the decision in this case has no bearing here.7 In Mont. Sulphur & Chem. Co., 666 F.3d 1174, the Court was not reviewing an infrastructure SIP, but rather EPA's disapproval of a SIP and promulgation of a federal implementation plan (FIP) after a long history of the state failing to submit an adequate SIP in response to EPA's finding under section 110(k)(5) that the previously approved SIP was substantially inadequate to attain or maintain the NAAQS. The Court cited generally to sections 107 and 110(a)(2)(A) of the CAA for the proposition that SIPs should assure attainment and maintenance of NAAQS through emission limitations, but this language was not part of the Court's holding in the case, which focused instead on whether EPA's finding of SIP inadequacy, disapproval of the state's required responsive attainment demonstration under section 110(k)(5), and adoption of a remedial FIP under section 110(c) were lawful. The Commenter suggests that Alaska Dept. of Envtl. Conservation, 540 U.S. 461, stands for the proposition that the 1990 CAA Amendments do not alter how courts interpret section 110. This claim is inaccurate. Rather, the Court quoted section 110(a)(2)(A), which, as noted previously, differs from the pre-1990 version of that provision and the Court made no mention of the changed language. Furthermore, the Commenter also quotes the Court's statement that “SIPs must include certain measures Congress specified,” but that statement specifically referenced the requirement in section 110(a)(2)(C), which requires an enforcement program and a program for the regulation of the modification and construction of new sources. Notably, at issue in that case was the state's “new source” permitting program, not its infrastructure SIP.

7 While the Commenter does contend that the Commonwealth shouldn't be allowed to rely on emission reductions that were developed for the prior standards (which we address herein), it does not claim that any of the measures are not “emissions limitations” within the definition of the CAA.

Two of the other cases the Commenter cites, Mich. Dept. of Envtl. Quality, 230 F.3d 181, and Hall, 273 F.3d 1146, interpret CAA section 110(l), the provision governing “revisions” to plans, and not the initial plan submission requirement under section 110(a)(2) for a new or revised NAAQS, such as the infrastructure SIP at issue in this instance. In those cases, the courts cited to section 110(a)(2)(A) solely for the purpose of providing a brief background of the CAA.

EPA does not believe any of these court decisions addressed required measures for infrastructure SIPs and believes nothing in the opinions addressed whether infrastructure SIPs need to contain measures to ensure attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS.

4. EPA Regulations, Such as 40 CFR 51.112(a)

Comment 4: The Commenter cites to 40 CFR 51.112(a), providing that “[e]ach plan must demonstrate that the measures, rules and regulations contained in it are adequate to provide for the timely attainment and maintenance of the [NAAQS].” The Commenter asserts that this regulation requires infrastructure SIPs to include emissions limits necessary to ensure attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS. The Commenter states that the provisions of 40 CFR 51.112 are not limited to nonattainment SIPs and instead applies to infrastructure SIPs which are required to attain and maintain the NAAQS in areas not designated nonattainment. The Commenter relies on a statement in the preamble to the 1986 action restructuring and consolidating provisions in part 51, in which EPA stated that “[i]t is beyond the scope of th[is] rulemaking to address the provisions of Part D of the Act . . .” 51 FR 40656, 40656 (November 7, 1986). The Commenter asserts 40 CFR 51.112(a) identifies the plans to which it applies as those that implement the NAAQS.

Response 4: The Commenter's reliance on 40 CFR 51.112 to support its argument that infrastructure SIPs must contain emission limits adequate to ensure attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS is not supported. As an initial matter, EPA notes this regulatory provision was initially promulgated and later restructured and consolidated prior to the CAA Amendments of 1990, in which Congress removed all references to “attainment” in section 110(a)(2)(A). And, it is clear on its face that 40 CFR 51.112 applies to plans specifically designed to attain the NAAQS. EPA interprets these provisions to apply when states are developing “control strategy” SIPs such as the detailed attainment and maintenance plans required under other provisions of the CAA, as amended in 1977 and again in 1990, such as sections 175A, 181-182, and 191-192. The Commenter suggests that these provisions must apply to section 110 SIPs because in the preamble to EPA's action “restructuring and consolidating” provisions in part 51, EPA stated that the new attainment demonstration provisions in the 1977 Amendments to the CAA were “beyond the scope” of the rulemaking. It is important to note, however, that EPA's action in 1986 was not to establish new substantive planning requirements, but rather was meant merely to consolidate and restructure provisions that had previously been promulgated. EPA noted that it had already issued guidance addressing the new “Part D” attainment planning obligations. Also, as to maintenance regulations, EPA expressly stated that it was not making any revisions other than to re-number those provisions. 51 FR 40657.

Although EPA was explicit that it was not establishing requirements interpreting the provisions of new “Part D” of the CAA, it is clear that the regulations being restructured and consolidated were intended to address control strategy plans. In the preamble, EPA clearly stated that 40 CFR 51.112 was replacing 40 CFR 51.13 (“Control strategy: SOx and PM (portion)”), 51.14 (“Control strategy: CO, HC, Ox and NO2 (portion)”), 51.80 (“Demonstration of attainment: Pb (portion)”), and 51.82 (“Air quality data (portion)”). Id. at 40660. Thus, the present-day 40 CFR 51.112 contains consolidated provisions that are focused on control strategy SIPs, and the infrastructure SIP is not such a plan.

5. EPA Interpretations in Other Rulemakings

Comment 5: The Commenter also references a prior EPA rulemaking action where EPA disapproved a SIP and claims that action shows EPA relied on section 110(a)(2)(A) and 40 CFR 51.112 to reject the SIP. The Commenter points to a 2006 partial approval and partial disapproval of revisions to Missouri's existing control strategy plans addressing the SO2 NAAQS. The Commenter claims EPA cited section 110(a)(2)(A) for disapproving a revision to the state plan on the basis that the State failed to demonstrate the SIP was sufficient to ensure maintenance of the SO2 NAAQS after revision of an emission limit and claims EPA cited to 40 CFR 51.112 as requiring that a plan demonstrates the rules in a SIP are adequate to attain the NAAQS. The Commenter claims the revisions to Missouri's control strategy SIP for SO2 were rejected by EPA because the revised control strategy limits were also in Missouri's infrastructure SIP and thus the weakened limits would have impacted the infrastructure SIP's ability to aid in attaining and maintaining the NAAQS.

Response 5: EPA does not agree that the prior Missouri rulemaking action referenced by the Commenter establishes how EPA reviews infrastructure SIPs. It is clear from the final Missouri rule that EPA was not reviewing initial infrastructure SIP submissions under section 110 of the CAA, but rather reviewing revisions that would make an already approved SIP designed to demonstrate attainment of the NAAQS less stringent. EPA's partial approval and partial disapproval of revisions to restrictions on emissions of sulfur compounds for the Missouri SIP in 71 FR 12623 addressed a control strategy SIP and not an infrastructure SIP. Nothing in that action addresses the necessary content of the initial infrastructure SIP for a new or revised NAAQS.

C. Sierra Club Comments on Pennsylvania SIP SO2 Emission Limits

The Commenter contends that the Pennsylvania 2008 ozone and 2010 SO2 infrastructure SIP revisions did not revise the existing ozone precursor emission limits and SO2 emission limits in response to the 2008 ozone and 2010 SO2 NAAQS and fail to comport with assorted CAA requirements for SIPs to establish enforceable emission limits that are adequate to prohibit NAAQS exceedances in areas not designated nonattainment. EPA will address SO2 comments and ozone comments respectively.

Comment 6: Citing section 110(a)(2)(A) of the CAA, the Commenter contends that EPA may not approve Pennsylvania's proposed 2010 SO2 infrastructure SIP because it does not include enforceable 1-hour SO2 emission limits for sources currently allowed to cause “NAAQS exceedances.” The Commenter asserts the proposed infrastructure SIP fails to include enforceable 1-hour SO2 emissions limits or other required measures to ensure attainment and maintenance of the SO2 NAAQS in areas not designated nonattainment as the Commenter claims is required by section 110(a)(2)(A). The Commenter asserts an infrastructure SIP must ensure, through state-wide regulations or source specific requirements, proper mass limitations and emissions rates with short term averaging on specific large sources of pollutants such as power plants. The Commenter asserts that emission limits are especially important for meeting the 1-hour SO2 NAAQS because SO2 impacts are strongly source-oriented. The Commenter states coal-fired electric generating units (EGUs) are large contributors to SO2 emissions but contends Pennsylvania did not demonstrate that emissions allowed by the proposed infrastructure SIP from such large sources of SO2 will ensure compliance with the 2010 1-hour SO2 NAAQS. The Commenter claims the proposed infrastructure SIP would allow major sources to continue operating with present emission limits.8 The Commenter then refers to air dispersion modeling it conducted for five coal-fired EGUs in Pennsylvania, including Brunner Island Steam Electric Station, Montour Steam Electric Station, Cheswick Power Station, New Castle Power Plant, and Shawville Coal Plant. The Commenter asserts the results of the air dispersion modeling it conducted employing EPA's AERMOD program for modeling used the plants' allowable emissions and showed the plants could cause exceedances of the 2010 SO2 NAAQS with allowable emissions.9 Based on the modeling, the Commenter asserts the Pennsylvania SO2 infrastructure SIP submittal authorizes the EGUs to cause exceedances of the NAAQS with allowable emission rates and therefore the infrastructure SIP fails to include adequate enforceable emission limitations or other required measures for sources of SO2 sufficient to ensure attainment and maintenance of the 2010 SO2 NAAQS.10 The Commenter therefore asserts EPA must disapprove Pennsylvania's proposed 2010 SO2 infrastructure SIP revision. In addition, the Commenter asserts “EPA may only approve an I-SIP that incorporates enforceable emission limitations on major sources of SO2 pollution in the state, including coal-fired power plants, with one-hour averaging times that are no less stringent than the modeling based limits . . . necessary to protect the one-hour SO2 NAAQS and attain and maintain the standard in Pennsylvania. These emission limits must apply at all times . . . to ensure that Pennsylvania is able to attain and maintain the 2010 SO2 NAAQS.” The Commenter claimed additional modeling for two EGUs, Brunner Island and Montour, done with actual historical hourly SO2 emissions show these facilities have actually been causing “exceedances of the NAAQS” while operating pursuant to existing emission limits which the Commenter claims Pennsylvania included as part of the SO2 infrastructure SIP submission. The Commenter also asserts that any coal-fired units slated for retirement should be incorporated into the infrastructure SIP with an enforceable emission limit or control measure.

8 The Commenter provides a chart in its comments claiming 80 percent of SO2 emissions in Pennsylvania are from coal-electric generating units based on 2011 data.

9 The Commenter asserts its modeling followed protocols pursuant to 40 CFR part 51, Appendix W and EPA's modeling guidance issued March 2011 and December 2013.

10 The Commenter again references 40 CFR 51.112 in support of its position that the infrastructure SIP must include emission limits for attainment and maintenance of the 2010 SO2 NAAQS.

Response 6: EPA disagrees with the Commenter that EPA must disapprove Pennsylvania's SO2 infrastructure SIP for the reasons provided by the Commenter including the Commenter's modeling results and insufficient SO2 emission limits. EPA is not in this action making a determination regarding the Commonwealth's current air quality status or regarding whether its control strategy is sufficient to attain and maintain the NAAQS. Therefore, EPA is not making any judgment on whether the Commenter's submitted modeling demonstrates the NAAQS exceedances that the Commenter claims. EPA believes that section 110(a)(2)(A) of the CAA is reasonably interpreted to require states to submit infrastructure SIPs that reflect the first step in their planning for attainment and maintenance of a new or revised NAAQS. These SIP revisions should contain a demonstration that the state has the available tools and authority to develop and implement plans to attain and maintain the NAAQS and show that the SIP has enforceable control measures. In light of the structure of the CAA, EPA's long-standing position regarding infrastructure SIPs is that they are general planning SIPs to ensure that the state has adequate resources and authority to implement a NAAQS in general throughout the state and not detailed attainment and maintenance plans for each individual area of the state. As mentioned above, EPA has interpreted this to mean, with regard to the requirement for emission limitations that states may rely on measures already in place to address the pollutant at issue or any new control measures that the state may choose to submit.

As stated in response to a previous more general comment, section 110 of the CAA is only one provision that is part of the complicated structure governing implementation of the NAAQS program under the CAA, as amended in 1990, and it must be interpreted in the context of not only that structure, but also of the historical evolution of that structure. In light of the revisions to section 110 since 1970 and the later-promulgated and more specific planning requirements of the CAA, EPA reasonably interprets the requirement in section 110(a)(2)(A) of the CAA that the plan provide for “implementation, maintenance and enforcement” to mean that the SIP must contain enforceable emission limits that will aid in attaining and/or maintaining the NAAQS and that the Commonwealth demonstrate that it has the necessary tools to implement and enforce a NAAQS, such as adequate state personnel and an enforcement program. As discussed above, EPA has interpreted the requirement for emission limitations in section 110 to mean that the state may rely on measures already in place to address the pollutant at issue or any new control measures that the state may choose to submit. Finally, as EPA stated in the Infrastructure SIP Guidance which specifically provides guidance to states in addressing the 2010 SO2 NAAQS and the 2008 Ozone NAAQS, “[t]he conceptual purpose of an infrastructure SIP submission is to assure that the air agency's SIP contains the necessary structural requirements for the new or revised NAAQS, whether by establishing that the SIP already contains the necessary provisions, by making a substantive SIP revision to update the SIP, or both.” Infrastructure SIP Guidance at p. 2.

On April 12, 2012, EPA explained its expectations regarding implementation of the 2010 SO2 NAAQS via letters to each of the states. EPA communicated in the April 2012 letters that all states were expected to submit SIPs meeting the “infrastructure” SIP requirements under section 110(a)(2) of the CAA by June 2013. At the time, EPA was undertaking a stakeholder outreach process to continue to develop possible approaches for determining attainment status under the SO2 NAAQS and implementing this NAAQS. EPA was abundantly clear in the April 2012 letters that EPA did not expect states to submit substantive attainment demonstrations or modeling demonstrations showing attainment for areas not designated nonattainment in infrastructure SIPs due in June 2013. Although EPA had previously suggested in its 2010 SO2 NAAQS preamble and in prior draft implementation guidance in 2011 that states should, in the unique SO2 context, use the section 110(a) SIP process as the vehicle for demonstrating attainment of the NAAQS, this approach was never adopted as a binding requirement and was subsequently discarded in the April 2012 letters to states. The April 2012 letters recommended states focus infrastructure SIPs due in June 2013, such as Pennsylvania's SO2 infrastructure SIP, on traditional “infrastructure elements” in section 110(a)(1) and (2) rather than on modeling demonstrations for future attainment for areas not designated as nonattainment.11

11 In EPA's final SO2 NAAQS preamble (75 FR 35520 (June 22, 2010)) and subsequent draft guidance in March and September 2011, EPA had expressed its expectation that many areas would be initially designated as unclassifiable due to limitations in the scope of the ambient monitoring network and the short time available before which states could conduct modeling to support their designations recommendations due in June 2011. In order to address concerns about potential violations in these unclassifiable areas, EPA initially recommended that states submit substantive attainment demonstration SIPs based on air quality modeling by June 2013 (under section 110(a)) that show how their unclassifiable areas would attain and maintain the NAAQS in the future. Implementation of the 2010 Primary 1-Hour SO 2 NAAQS, Draft White Paper for Discussion, May 2012 (2012 Draft White Paper) (for discussion purposes with Stakeholders at meetings in May and June 2012), available at http://www.epa.gov/airquality/sulfurdioxide/implement.html. However, EPA clearly stated in this 2012 Draft White Paper its clarified implementation position that it was no longer recommending such attainment demonstrations for unclassifiable areas for June 2013 infrastructure SIPs. Id. EPA had stated in the preamble to the NAAQS and in the prior 2011 draft guidance that EPA intended to develop and seek public comment on guidance for modeling and development of SIPs for sections 110 and 191 of the CAA. Section 191 of the CAA requires states to submit SIPs in accordance with section 172 for areas designated nonattainment with the SO2 NAAQS. After seeking such comment, EPA has now issued guidance for the nonattainment area SIPs due pursuant to sections 191 and 172. See Guidance for 1-Hour SO2 Nonattainment Area SIP Submissions, Stephen D. Page, Director, EPA's Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, to Regional Air Division Directors Regions 1-10, April 23, 2014. In September 2013, EPA had previously issued specific guidance relevant to infrastructure SIP submissions due for the NAAQS, including the 2010 SO2 NAAQS. See Infrastructure SIP Guidance.

Therefore, EPA asserts that evaluations of modeling demonstrations such as those submitted by the Commenter are more appropriately to be considered in actions that make determinations regarding states' current air quality status or regarding future air quality status. EPA also asserts that SIP revisions for SO2 nonattainment areas including measures and modeling demonstrating attainment are due by the dates statutorily prescribed under subpart 5 under part D. Those submissions are due no later than 18 months after an area is designed nonattainment for SO2, under CAA section 191(a). Thus, the CAA directs states to submit these SIP requirements that are specific for nonattainment areas on a separate schedule from the “structural requirements” of 110(a)(2) which are due within three years of adoption or revision of a NAAQS and which apply statewide. The infrastructure SIP submission requirement does not move up the date for any required submission of a part D plan for areas designated nonattainment for the new NAAQS. Thus, elements relating to demonstrating attainment for areas not attaining the NAAQS are not necessary for infrastructure SIP submissions, and the CAA does not provide explicit requirements for demonstrating attainment for areas that have not yet been designated regarding attainment with a particular NAAQS.

As stated previously, EPA believes that the proper inquiry at this juncture is whether Pennsylvania has met the basic structural SIP requirements appropriate at the point in time EPA is acting upon the infrastructure submittal. Emissions limitations and other control measures needed to attain the NAAQS in areas designated nonattainment for that NAAQS are due on a different schedule from the section 110 infrastructure elements. A state, like Pennsylvania, may reference pre-existing SIP emission limits or other rules contained in part D plans for previous NAAQS in an infrastructure SIP submission. Pennsylvania's existing rules and emission reduction measures in the SIP that control emissions of SO2 were discussed in the TSD. These provisions have the ability to reduce SO2 overall. Although the Pennsylvania SIP relies on measures and programs used to implement previous SO2 NAAQS, these provisions are not limited to reducing SO2 levels to meet one specific NAAQS and will continue to provide benefits for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS.

Additionally, as discussed in EPA's TSD supporting the NPR, Pennsylvania has the ability to revise its SIP when necessary (e.g. in the event the Administrator finds the plan to be substantially inadequate to attain the NAAQS or otherwise meet all applicable CAA requirements) as required under element H of section 110(a)(2). See Section 4(1) of the APCA, 35 P.S. § 4004(1), which empowers PADEP to implement the provisions of the CAA. Section 5 of the APCA, 35 P.S. § 4005, authorizes the Environmental Quality Board (EQB) to adopt rules and regulations for the prevention, control, reduction and abatement of air pollution throughout the Commonwealth.

EPA believes the requirements for emission reduction measures for an area designated nonattainment for the 2010 primary SO2 NAAQS are in sections 172 and 191-192 of the CAA, and therefore, the appropriate avenue for implementing requirements for necessary emission limitations for demonstrating attainment with the 2010 SO2 NAAQS is through the attainment planning process contemplated by those sections of the CAA. On August 5, 2013, EPA designated as nonattainment most areas in locations where existing monitoring data from 2009-2011 indicated violations of the 1-hour SO2 standard. 78 FR 47191. At that time, four areas in Pennsylvania had monitoring data from 2009-2011 indicating violations of the 1-hour SO2 standard, and these areas were designated nonattainment in Pennsylvania. See 40 CFR 81.339. Also on March 2, 2015 the United States District Court for the Northern District of California entered a Consent Decree among the EPA, Sierra Club and Natural Resources Defense Council to resolve litigation concerning the deadline for completing designations for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS. Pursuant to the terms of the Consent Decree, EPA will complete additional designations for all remaining areas of the country including remaining areas in Pennsylvania.12

12 The Consent Decree, entered March 2, 2015 by the United States District Court for the Northern District of California in Sierra Club and NRDC v. EPA, Case 3:13-cv-03953-SI (N.D. Cal.) is available at http://www.epa.gov/airquality/sulfurdioxide/designations/pdfs/201503FinalCourtOrder.pdf.

For the four areas designated nonattainment in Pennsylvania in August 2013, attainment SIPs were due by April 4, 2015 and must contain demonstrations that the areas will attain the 2010 SO2 NAAQS as expeditiously as practicable, but no later than October 4, 2018 pursuant to sections 172, 191 and 192, including a plan for enforceable measures to reach attainment of the NAAQS. Similar attainment planning SIPs for any additional areas which EPA subsequently designates nonattainment with the 2010 SO2 NAAQS will be due for such areas within the timeframes specified in CAA section 191. EPA believes it is not appropriate to interpret the overall section 110(a)(2) infrastructure SIP obligation to require bypassing the attainment planning process by imposing separate requirements outside the attainment planning process. Such actions would be disruptive and premature absent exceptional circumstances and would interfere with a state's planning process. See In the Matter of EME Homer City Generation LP and First Energy Generation Corp., Order on Petitions Numbers III-2012-06, III-2012-07, and III 2013-01 (July 30, 2014) (hereafter, Homer City/Mansfield Order) at 10-19 (finding Pennsylvania SIP did not require imposition of 1-hour SO2 emission limits on sources independent of the part D attainment planning process contemplated by the CAA). EPA believes that the history of the CAA and intent of Congress for the CAA as described above demonstrate clearly that it is within the section 172 and general part D attainment planning process that Pennsylvania must include 1-hour SO2 emission limits on sources, where needed, for the four areas designated nonattainment to reach attainment with the 2010 1-hour SO2 NAAQS and for any additional areas EPA may subsequently designate nonattainment.

The Commenter's reliance on 40 CFR 51.112 to support its argument that infrastructure SIPs must contain emission limits adequate to provide for timely attainment and maintenance of the standard is also not supported. As explained previously in response to the background comments, EPA notes this regulatory provision applies to planning SIPs, such as those demonstrating how an area will attain a specific NAAQS and not to infrastructure SIPs which are intended to support that the states have in place structural requirements necessary to implement the NAAQS.

As noted in EPA's preamble for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS, determining compliance with the SO2 NAAQS will likely be a source-driven analysis and EPA has explored options to ensure that the SO2 designations process realistically accounts for anticipated SO2 reductions at sources that we expect will be achieved by current and pending national and regional rules. See 75 FR 35520. As mentioned previously, EPA will act in accordance with the entered Consent Decree's schedule for conducting additional designations for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS and any areas designated nonattainment must meet the applicable part D requirements for these areas. However, because the purpose of an infrastructure SIP submission is for more general planning purposes, EPA does not believe Pennsylvania was obligated during this infrastructure SIP planning process to account for controlled SO2 levels at individual sources. See Homer City/Mansfield Order at 10-19.

Regarding the air dispersion modeling conducted by the Commenter pursuant to AERMOD for the coal-fired plants including the Brunner Island, Montour, Cheswick, New Castle and Shawville facilities, EPA does not find the modeling information relevant at this time for review of an infrastructure SIP. While EPA has extensively discussed the use of modeling for attainment demonstration purposes and for designations, EPA has affirmatively stated such modeling was not needed to demonstrate attainment for the SO2 infrastructure SIPs under the 2010 SO2 NAAQS. See April 12, 2012 letters to states regarding SO2 implementation and Implementation of the 2010 Primary 1-Hour SO2 NAAQS, Draft White Paper for Discussion, May 2012, available at http://www.epa.gov/airquality/sulfurdioxide/implement.html. 13

13 EPA has provided draft guidance for states regarding modeling analyses to support the designations process for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS. SO 2 NAAQS Designations Modeling Technical Assistance Document (draft), EPA Office of Air and Radiation and Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, December 2013, available at http://www.epa.gov/airquality/sulfurdioxide/implement.html.

EPA has proposed a Data Requirements Rule which, if promulgated, will be relevant to the SO2 designations process. See, e.g., 79 FR 27446 (May 13, 2014) (proposing process by which state air agencies would characterize air quality around SO2 sources through ambient monitoring and/or air quality modeling techniques and submit such data to the EPA). The proposed rule includes a lengthy discussion of how EPA anticipates addressing modeling that informs determinations of states' air quality status under the 2010 SO2 NAAQS. As stated above, EPA believes it is not appropriate to bypass the attainment planning process by imposing separate attainment planning process requirements outside part D and into the infrastructure SIP process.

Finally, EPA also disagrees with the Commenter that the Pennsylvania infrastructure SIP must, to be approved, incorporate the planned retirement dates of coal-fired EGUs to ensure attainment and maintenance of the SO2 NAAQS. Because EPA does not believe Pennsylvania's infrastructure SIP requires at this time 1-hour SO2 emission limits on these sources or other large stationary sources to ensure attainment or maintenance or “prevent exceedances” of the 2010 SO2 NAAQS, EPA likewise does not believe incorporating planned retirement dates for SO2 emitters is necessary for our approval of an infrastructure SIP which we have explained meets the structural requirements of section 110(a)(2). Pennsylvania can address any SO2 emission reductions that may be needed to attain the 2010 SO2 NAAQS, including reductions through source retirements, in the separate attainment planning process of part D of title I of the CAA for areas designated nonattainment.

In conclusion, EPA disagrees with the Commenter's statements that EPA must disapprove Pennsylvania's infrastructure SIP submission because it does not establish specific enforceable SO2 emission limits, either on coal-fired EGUs or other large SO2 sources, in order to demonstrate attainment and maintenance with the NAAQS at this time.14

14 Finally, EPA does not disagree with the Commenter's claim that coal fired EGUs are a large source of SO2 emissions in Pennsylvania based on the 2011 NEI. However, EPA does not agree that this information is relevant to our approval of the infrastructure SIP which EPA has explained meets requirements in CAA section 110(a)(2).

Comment 7: The Commenter asserts that modeling is the appropriate tool for evaluating adequacy of infrastructure SIPs and ensuring attainment and maintenance of the 2010 SO2 NAAQS. The Commenter refers to EPA's historic use of air dispersion modeling for attainment designations as well as “SIP revisions.” The Commenter cites to prior EPA statements that the Agency has used modeling for designations and attainment demonstrations, including statements in the 2010 SO2 NAAQS preamble, EPA's 2012 Draft White Paper for Discussion on Implementing the 2010 SO2 NAAQS, and a 1994 SO2 Guideline Document, as modeling could better address the source-specific impacts of SO2 emissions and historic challenges from monitoring SO2 emissions.15

15 The Commenter also cites to a 1983 EPA Memorandum on section 107 designations policy regarding use of modeling for designations and to the 2012 Mont. Sulphur & Chem. Co. case which upheld EPA's finding that the previously approved SIP for an area in Montana was substantially inadequate to attain the NAAQS due to modeled violations of the NAAQS.

The Commenter also cited to several cases upholding EPA's use of modeling in NAAQS implementation actions, including the Montana Sulphur case, Sierra Club v. Costle, 657 F.2d 298 (D.C. Cir. 1981), Republic Steel Corp. v. Costle, 621 F.2d 797 (6th Cir. 1980), and Catawba County v. EPA, 571 F.3d 20 (D.C. Cir. 2009).16 The Commenter discusses statements made by EPA staff regarding the use of modeling and monitoring in setting emission limitations or determining ambient concentrations as a result of a source's emissions, discussing performance of AERMOD as a model, if AERMOD is capable of predicting whether the NAAQS is attained, and whether individual sources contribute to SO2 NAAQS violations. The Commenter cites to EPA's history of employing air dispersion modeling for increment compliance verifications in the permitting process for the Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) program required in part C of Title I of the CAA. The Commenter claims several coal-fired EGUs including Brunner Island, Montour, Cheswick, New Castle, and Shawville are examples of sources located in elevated terrain where the AERMOD model functions appropriately in evaluating ambient impacts.

16Montana Sulphur & Chemical Co. v. EPA, 666 F.3d 1174 (9th Cir. 2012).

The Commenter asserts EPA's use of air dispersion modeling was upheld in GenOn REMA, LLC v. EPA, 722 F.3d 513 (3rd Cir. 2013) where an EGU challenged EPA's use of CAA section 126 to impose SO2 emission limits on a source due to cross-state impacts. The Commenter claims the Third Circuit in GenOn REMA upheld EPA's actions after examining the record which included EPA's air dispersion modeling of the one source as well as other data.

The Commenter cites to Vehicle Mfrs. Ass'n v. State Farm Mut. Auto Ins. Co., 463 U.S. 29,43 (1983) and NRDC v. EPA, 571 F.3d 1245, 1254 (D.C. Cir. 2009) for the general proposition that it would be arbitrary and capricious for an agency to ignore an aspect of an issue placed before it and that an agency must consider information presented during notice-and-comment rulemaking.17

17 The Commenter also claims it raised similar arguments to Pennsylvania during the Pennsylvania proposal process for the infrastructure SIPs.

Finally, the Commenter claims that Pennsylvania's proposed SO2 infrastructure SIP lacks emission limitations informed by air dispersion modeling and therefore fails to ensure Pennsylvania will attain and maintain the 2010 SO2 NAAQS. The Commenter claims EPA must disapprove the SO2 infrastructure SIP as it does not “prevent exceedances” or ensure attainment and maintenance of the SO2 NAAQS.

Response 7: EPA agrees with the Commenter that air dispersion modeling, such as AERMOD, can be an important tool in the CAA section 107 designations process for SO2 and in developing SIPs for nonattainment areas as required by sections 172 and 191-192, including supporting required attainment demonstrations. EPA agrees that prior EPA statements, EPA guidance, and case law support the use of air dispersion modeling in the SO2 designations process and attainment demonstration process, as well as in analyses of the interstate impact of transported emissions and whether existing approved SIPs remain adequate to show attainment and maintenance of the SO2 NAAQS. However, as provided in the previous responses, EPA disagrees with the Commenter that EPA must disapprove the Pennsylvania SO2 infrastructure SIP for its alleged failure to include source-specific SO2 emission limits that show no exceedances of the NAAQS when modeled or ensure attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS.

In acting to approve or disapprove an infrastructure SIP, EPA is not required to make findings regarding current air quality status of areas within the state, regarding such area's projected future air quality status, or regarding whether existing emissions limits in such area are sufficient to meet a NAAQS in the area. All of the actions the Commenter cites, instead, do make findings regarding at least one of those issues. The attainment planning process detailed in part D of the CAA, including sections 172 and 191-192 attainment SIPs, is the appropriate place for the state to evaluate measures needed to bring in-state nonattainment areas into attainment with a NAAQS and to impose additional emission limitations such as SO2 emission limits on specific sources.

EPA had initially recommended that states submit substantive attainment demonstration SIPs based on air quality modeling in the final 2010 SO2 NAAQS preamble (75 FR 35520) and in subsequent draft guidance issued in September 2011 for the section 110(a) SIPs due in June 2013 in order to show how areas then-expected to be designated as unclassifiable would attain and maintain the NAAQS. These initial statements in the preamble and 2011 draft guidance, presented only in the context of the new 1-hour SO2 NAAQS and not suggested as a matter of general infrastructure SIP policy, were based on EPA's expectation at the time, that by June 2012, most areas would initially be designated as unclassifiable due to limitations in the scope of the ambient monitoring network and the short time available before which states could conduct modeling to support designations recommendations in 2011. However, after conducting extensive stakeholder outreach and receiving comments from the states regarding these initial statements and the timeline for implementing the NAAQS, EPA subsequently stated in the April 12, 2012 letters and in the 2012 Draft White Paper that EPA was clarifying its 2010 SO2 NAAQS implementation position and was no longer recommending such attainment demonstrations supported by air dispersion modeling for unclassifiable areas (which had not yet been designated) for the June 2013 infrastructure SIPs. Instead, EPA explained that it expected states to submit infrastructure SIPs that followed the general policy EPA had applied under other NAAQS. EPA then reaffirmed this position in the February 6, 2013 memorandum, “Next Steps for Area Designations and Implementation of the Sulfur Dioxide National Ambient Air Quality Standard.” 18 As previously mentioned, EPA had stated in the preamble to the NAAQS and in the prior 2011 draft guidance that EPA intended to develop and seek public comment on guidance for modeling and development of SIPs for sections 110, 172 and 191-192 of the CAA. After receiving such further comment, EPA has now issued guidance for the nonattainment area SIPs due pursuant to sections 172 and 191-192. See April 23, 2014 Guidance for 1-Hour SO 2 Nonattainment Area SIP Submissions. In addition, modeling may be an appropriate consideration for states and EPA in further designations for the SO2 NAAQS in accordance with the Sierra Club and NRDC Consent Decree and proposed data requirements rule mentioned previously.19 While the EPA guidance for attainment SIPs and for designations for CAA section 107 and proposed process for characterizing SO2 emissions from larger sources discuss the use of air dispersion modeling, EPA's 2013 Infrastructure SIP Guidance did not suggest that states use air dispersion modeling for purposes of the section 110(a)(2) infrastructure SIP. Therefore, as discussed previously, EPA believes the Pennsylvania SO2 infrastructure SIP submittal contains the structural requirements to address elements in section 110(a)(2) as discussed in detail in the TSD accompanying the proposed approval. EPA believes infrastructure SIPs are general planning SIPs to ensure that a state has adequate resources and authority to implement a NAAQS. Infrastructure SIP submissions are not intended to act or fulfill the obligations of a detailed attainment and/or maintenance plan for each individual area of the state that is not attaining the NAAQS. While infrastructure SIPs must address modeling authorities in general for section 110(a)(2)(K), EPA believes 110(a)(2)(K) requires infrastructure SIPs to provide the state's authority for air quality modeling and for submission of modeling data to EPA, not specific air dispersion modeling for large stationary sources of pollutants. In the TSD for this rulemaking action, EPA provided a detailed explanation of Pennsylvania's ability and authority to conduct air quality modeling when required and its authority to submit modeling data to the EPA.

18 The February 6, 2013 “Next Steps for Area Designations and Implementation of the Sulfur Dioxide National Ambient Air Quality Standard,” one of the April 12, 2012 state letters, and the May 2012 Draft White Paper are available at http://www.epa.gov/airquality/sulfurdioxide/implement.html.

19 The Consent Decree in Sierra Club and NRDC v. EPA, Case 3:13-cv-03953-SI (N.D. Cal.) is available at http://www.epa.gov/airquality/sulfurdioxide/designations/pdfs/201503FinalCourtOrder.pdf. See 79 FR 27446 (EPA's proposed data requirements rule). See also Updated Guidance for Area Designations for the 2010 Primary Sulfur Dioxide National Ambient Air Quality Standard, Stephen D. Page, Director, EPA's Office of Air Quality Planning Standards, March 20, 2015, available at http://www.epa.gov/airquality/sulfurdioxide/pdfs/20150320SO2designations.pdf.>

EPA finds the Commenter's discussion of case law, guidance, and EPA staff statements regarding advantages of AERMOD as an air dispersion model for purposes of demonstrating attainment of the NAAQS to be irrelevant to the analysis of Pennsylvania's infrastructure SIP, which as we have explained is separate from the SIP required to demonstrate attainment of the NAAQS pursuant to sections 172 or 192. In addition, the Commenter's comments relating to EPA's use of AERMOD or modeling in general in designations pursuant to section 107, including its citation to Catawba County, are likewise irrelevant as EPA's present approval of Pennsylvania's infrastructure SIP is unrelated to the section 107 designations process. Nor is EPA's action on this infrastructure SIP related to any new source review (NSR) or PSD permit program issue. As outlined in the August 23, 2010 clarification memo, “Applicability of Appendix W Modeling Guidance for the 1-hour SO2 National Ambient Air Quality Standard” (U.S. EPA, 2010a), AERMOD is the preferred model for single source modeling to address the 1-hour SO2 NAAQS as part of the NSR/PSD permit programs. Therefore, as attainment SIPs, designations, and NSR/PSD actions are outside the scope of a required infrastructure SIP for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS for section 110(a), EPA provides no further response to the Commenter's discussion of air dispersion modeling for these applications. If the Commenter resubmits its air dispersion modeling for the Pennsylvania EGUs, or updated modeling information in the appropriate context, EPA will address the resubmitted modeling or updated modeling at that time.

The Commenter correctly noted that the Third Circuit upheld EPA's section 126 finding imposing SO2 emissions limitations on an EGU pursuant to CAA section 126. GenOn REMA, LLC v. EPA, 722 F.3d 513. Pursuant to section 126, any state or political subdivision may petition EPA for a finding that any major source or group of stationary sources emits, or would emit, any air pollutant in violation of the prohibition of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i) which relates to significant contributions to nonattainment or interference with maintenance of a NAAQS in another state. The Third Circuit upheld EPA's authority under section 126 and found EPA's actions neither arbitrary nor capricious after reviewing EPA's supporting docket which included air dispersion modeling as well as ambient air monitoring data showing exceedances of the NAAQS. The Commenter appears to have cited to this matter to demonstrate EPA's use of modeling for certain aspects of the CAA. We do not disagree that such modeling is appropriate for other actions, such as those under section 126. But, for the reasons explained above, such modeling is not required for determining whether Pennsylvania's infrastructure SIP has the required structural requirements pursuant to section 110(a)(2). As noted above, EPA is not acting on an interstate transport SIP in this action because Pennsylvania has not made such a submission. The decision in GenOn Rema does not otherwise speak to the role of air dispersion modeling as to any other planning requirements in the CAA.

In its comments, the Commenter relies on Motor Vehicle Mfrs. Ass'n and NRDC v. EPA to support its comments that EPA must consider the Commenter's modeling data on several Pennsylvania EGUs including Brunner Island, Montour, Cheswick, New Castle, and Shawville based on administrative law principles regarding consideration of comments provided during a rulemaking process. For the reasons previously explained, the purpose for which the Commenter submitted the modeling—namely, to assert that current air quality in the areas in which those sources are located does not meet the NAAQS—is not relevant to EPA's action on this infrastructure SIP, and consequently EPA is not required to consider the modeling in evaluating the approvability of the infrastructure SIP.20 EPA does not believe infrastructure SIPs must contain emission limitations informed by air dispersion modeling in order to meet the requirements of section 110(a)(2)(A). Thus, EPA has evaluated the persuasiveness of the Commenter's submitted modeling in finding that it is not relevant to the approvability of Pennsylvania's proposed infrastructure SIP for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS, but EPA has made no judgment regarding whether the Commenter's submitted modeling is sufficient to show violations of the NAAQS.

20 EPA notes that PADEP provided similar responses to the Commenter's claims regarding evaluation of modeling data for an infrastructure SIP as specifically recounted by the Commenter in its March 9, 2015 comments to EPA on this rulemaking action. EPA agrees with PADEP's responses that emissions limitations for attainment of the NAAQS are appropriate for consideration in the part D planning process and not for the infrastructure SIP process. Thus, EPA provides no further response on this issue as PADEP responded to the Commenter in Pennsylvania's rulemaking and EPA's responses are provided in this action.

While EPA does not believe that infrastructure SIP submissions are required to contain emission limits assuring in-state attainment of the NAAQS, as suggested by the Commenter, EPA does recognize that in the past, states have, in their discretion, used infrastructure SIP submittals as a `vehicle' for incorporating regulatory revisions or source-specific emission limits into the state's plan. See 78 FR 73442 (December 6, 2013) (approving regulations Maryland submitted for incorporation into the SIP along with the 2008 ozone infrastructure SIP to address ethics requirements for State Boards in sections 128 and 110(a)(2)(E)(ii)). While these SIP revisions are intended to help the state meet the requirements of section 110(a)(2), these “ride-along” SIP revisions are not intended to signify that all infrastructure SIP submittals must, in order to be approved by EPA, have similar regulatory revisions or source-specific emission limits. Rather, the regulatory provisions and source-specific emission limits the state relies on when showing compliance with section 110(a)(2) have, in many cases, likely already been incorporated into the state's SIP prior to each new infrastructure SIP submission; in some cases this was done for entirely separate CAA requirements, such as attainment plans required under section 172, or for previous NAAQS.

Comment 8: The Commenter asserts that EPA may not approve the Pennsylvania proposed SO2 infrastructure SIP because it fails to include enforceable emission limitations with a 1-hour averaging time that applies at all times. The Commenter cites to CAA section 302(k) which requires emission limits to apply on a continuous basis. The Commenter claims EPA has stated that 1-hour averaging times are necessary for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS citing to EPA's April 23, 2014 Guidance for 1-Hour SO 2 Nonattainment Area SIP Submissions, a February 3, 2011, EPA Region 7 letter to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment regarding the need for 1-hour SO2 emission limits in a PSD permit, an EPA Environmental Hearing Board (EHB) decision rejecting use of a 3-hour averaging time for a SO2 limit in a PSD permit, and EPA's disapproval of a Missouri SIP which relied on annual averaging for SO2 emission rates.21

21 Sierra Club cited to In re: Mississippi Lime Co., PSDAPLPEAL 11-01, 2011 WL 3557194, at *26-27 (EPA Aug. 9, 2011) and 71 FR 12623, 12624 (March 13, 2006) (EPA disapproval of a control strategy SO2 SIP).

Thus, the Commenter contends EPA must disapprove Pennsylvania's infrastructure SIP which the Commenter claims fails to require emission limits with adequate averaging times.

Response 8: EPA disagrees that EPA must disapprove the proposed Pennsylvania infrastructure SIP because the SIP does not contain enforceable SO2 emission limitations with 1-hour averaging periods that apply at all times, as this issue is not appropriate for resolution at this stage. The comment does not assert that the SO2 emission limits in Pennsylvania's SIP are not enforceable or that they do not apply at all times, instead the comment focuses on the lack of 1-hour averaging times. We do not believe, as suggested by the Commenter, that the emission limits are not “continuous” within the meaning of section 302(k). As EPA has noted previously, the purpose of the section 110(a)(2) SIP is to ensure that the State has the necessary structural components to implement programs for attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS.22 While EPA does agree that the averaging time is a critical consideration for purposes of substantive SIP revisions, such as attainment demonstrations, the averaging time of existing rules in the SIP is not relevant for determining that the State has met the applicable requirements of section 110(a)(2) with respect to the infrastructure elements addressed in the present SIP action.23 Therefore, because EPA finds Pennsylvania's SO2 infrastructure SIP approvable without the additional SO2 emission limitations showing in-state attainment of the NAAQS, EPA finds the issues of appropriate averaging periods for such future limitations not relevant at this time. The Commenter has cited to prior EPA discussion on emission limitations required in PSD permits (from an EAB decision and EPA's letter to Kansas' permitting authority) pursuant to part C of the CAA, which is neither relevant nor applicable to the present SIP action. In addition, as previously discussed, the EPA disapproval of the 2006 Missouri SIP was a disapproval relating to a control strategy SIP required pursuant to part D attainment planning and is likewise not relevant to the analysis of infrastructure SIP requirements.

22 As EPA has stated, some areas are designated nonattainment areas pursuant to CAA section 107 for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS in the Commonwealth. Thus, while the Commonwealth, at this time, has an obligation to submit attainment plans for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS for sections 172, 191 and 192, EPA believes the appropriate time for examining necessity of the averaging periods within any submitted SO2 emission limits on specific sources is within the attainment planning process.

23 For a discussion on emission averaging times for emissions limitations for SO2 attainment SIPs, see the April 23, 2014 Guidance for 1-Hour SO 2 Nonattainment Area SIP Submissions. EPA explained that it is possible, in specific cases, for states to develop control strategies that account for variability in 1-hour emissions rates through emission limits with averaging times that are longer than 1-hour, using averaging times as long as 30-days, but still provide for attainment of the 2010 SO2 NAAQS as long as the limits are of at least comparable stringency to a 1-hour limit at the critical emission value. EPA has not yet evaluated any specific submission of such a limit, and so is not at this time prepared to take final action to implement this concept.

Comment 9: The Commenter states that enforceable emission limits in SIPs or permits are necessary to avoid nonattainment designations in areas where modeling or monitoring shows SO2 levels exceed the 1-hour SO2 NAAQS and cites to a February 6, 2013 EPA document, Next Steps for Area Designations and Implementation of the Sulfur Dioxide National Ambient Air Quality Standard, which the Commenter contends discusses how states could avoid future nonattainment designations. The Commenter asserts EPA must ensure enforceable emission limits in the Pennsylvania infrastructure SIP will not allow “exceedances” of the SO2 NAAQS. The Commenter claims the modeling it conducted for Brunner Island, Montour, Cheswick, New Castle, and Shawville indicates at least 28 additional counties in Pennsylvania must be designated nonattainment with the 2010 SO2 NAAQS without such enforceable SO2 limits. In summary, the Commenter asserts EPA must disapprove the Pennsylvania infrastructure SIP and ensure emission limits will not allow large sources of SO2 to cause exceedances of the 2010 SO2 NAAQS.

Response 9: EPA appreciates the Commenter's concern with avoiding nonattainment designations in Pennsylvania for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS. However, Congress designed the CAA such that states have the primary responsibility for achieving and maintaining the NAAQS within their geographic area by submitting SIPs which will specify the details of how the state will meet the NAAQS. Pursuant to section 107(d), the states make initial recommendations of designations for areas within each state and EPA then promulgates the designations after considering the state's submission and other information. EPA promulgated initial designations for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS in August 2013 for areas in which monitoring at that time showed violations of the NAAQS, but has not yet issued designations for other areas and will complete the required designations pursuant to the schedule contained in the recently entered Consent Decree. EPA will designate additional areas for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS in accordance with the CAA section 107 and existing EPA policy and guidance. Pennsylvania may, on its own accord, decide to impose additional SO2 emission limitations to avoid future designations to nonattainment. If additional Pennsylvania areas are designated nonattainment, Pennsylvania will then have the initial opportunity to develop additional emissions limitations needed to attain the NAAQS, and EPA would be charged with reviewing whether the SIP is adequate to demonstrate attainment. See Commonwealth of Virginia, et al., v. EPA, 108 F.3d 1397, 1410 (D.C. Cir. 1997) (citing Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc. v. Browner, 57 F.3d 1122, 1123 (DCCir.1995)) (discussing that states have primary responsibility for determining an emission reductions program for its areas subject to EPA approval dependent upon whether the SIP as a whole meets applicable requirements of the CAA). However, such considerations are not required of Pennsylvania at the infrastructure SIP stage of NAAQS implementation, as the Commenter's statements concern the separate designations process under section 107.24 EPA disagrees that the infrastructure SIP must be disapproved for not including enforceable emissions limitations to prevent future 1-hour SO2 nonattainment designations.

24 EPA also notes that in EPA's final rule regarding the 2010 SO2 NAAQS, EPA noted that it anticipates several forthcoming national and regional rules, such as the Industrial Boilers standard under CAA section 112, are likely to require significant reductions in SO2 emissions over the next several years. See 75 FR 35520. EPA continues to believe similar national and regional rules will lead to SO2 reductions that will help achieve compliance with the 2010 SO2 NAAQS. If it appears that states with areas designated nonattainment in 2013 will nevertheless fail to attain the NAAQS as expeditiously as practicable (but no later than October 2018) during EPA's review of attainment SIPs required by section 172, the CAA provides authorities and tools for EPA to solve such failure, including, as appropriate, disapproving submitted SIPs and promulgating federal implementation plans. Likewise, for any areas designated nonattainment after 2013, EPA has the same authorities and tools available to address any areas which do not timely attain the NAAQS.

D. Sierra Club Comments on Pennsylvania 2008 Ozone Infrastructure SIP

Comment 10: The Commenter claims EPA must disapprove the proposed infrastructure SIP for the 2008 ozone NAAQS for its failure to include enforceable measures on sources of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and nitrogen oxides (NOX) to ensure attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS in areas not designated nonattainment and to ensure compliance with section 110(a)(2)(A) for the 2008 ozone NAAQS. The Commenter specifically mentions EGUs as well as the oil and gas production industry as sources needing additional controls as they are major sources of ozone precursors. The Commenter claims stringent emission limits must apply at all times to ensure all areas in Pennsylvania attain and maintain the ozone NAAQS. The Commenter claims the provisions listed by Pennsylvania for section 110(a)(2)(A) in its 2008 ozone NAAQS infrastructure SIP are insufficient for attaining and maintaining the 2008 ozone NAAQS as evidenced by the Commenter's review of air quality monitoring data in areas which are not presently designated nonattainment for the 2008 ozone NAAQS. Specifically, the Commenter cites air monitoring in a number of Pennsylvania counties including Mercer, Indiana, Lebanon, Dauphin, Erie and York counties indicating “exceedances” of the NAAQS and what the Commenter asserts are design values above the NAAQS in 2010-2012, 2011-2013, and 2012-2014. The Commenter alleges that these “exceedances” demonstrate that the Pennsylvania 2008 ozone infrastructure SIP with existing regulations, statutes, source-specific limits and programs fails to demonstrate the infrastructure SIP will ensure attainment and maintenance of the 2008 ozone NAAQS. Thus, the Commenter asserts EPA must disapprove the 2008 ozone infrastructure SIP.

In addition, the Commenter asserts that the infrastructure SIP required by section 110(a) must provide assurances that the NAAQS will be attained and maintained for areas not designated nonattainment and asserts that the Pennsylvania infrastructure SIP must contain state-wide regulations and emission limits that “ensure that the proper mass limitations and short term averaging periods are imposed on certain specific large sources of NOX such as power plants. These emission limits must apply at all times . . . to ensure that all areas of Pennsylvania attain and maintain the 2008 eight-hour Ozone NAAQS.” The Commenter suggests limits should be set on a pounds per hour (lbs/hr) basis for EGUs to address variation in mass emissions and ensure protection of the ambient air quality. The Commenter cites to NOX limits from PSD permits issued to EGUs with low NOX emission rates, claiming such rates and related control efficiencies are achievable for EGUs. The Commenter suggests short-term averaging limits would ensure EGUs cannot emit NOX at higher rates on days when ozone levels are worst while meeting a longer-term average. The Commenter also contends that adding control devices and emission limits on EGUs are a “cost effective option to reduce NOX pollution and attain and maintain the 2008 ozone NAAQS.”

Finally, the Commenter contends the proposed ozone infrastructure SIP cannot ensure Pennsylvania will attain and maintain the 2008 ozone NAAQS and contends EPA must disapprove the SIP for lack of emission limits to attain and maintain the ozone NAAQS statewide.

Response 10: EPA disagrees with the commenter that the infrastructure SIPs must include detailed attainment and maintenance plans for all areas of the state and must be disapproved if ozone air quality data that became available late in the process or after the SIP was due and submitted changes the status of areas within the state.25 EPA has addressed in detail in prior responses above the Commenter's general arguments that the statutory language, legislative history, case law, EPA regulations, and prior rulemaking actions by EPA mandate the interpretation it advocates—i.e., that infrastructure SIPs must ensure attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS. EPA believes that section 110(a)(2)(A) is reasonably interpreted to require states to submit SIPs that reflect the first step in their planning for attaining and maintaining a new or revised NAAQS and that they contain enforceable control measures and a demonstration that the state has the available tools and authority to develop and implement plans to attain and maintain the NAAQS, including the 2008 ozone NAAQS.

25 EPA notes however that the data presented by the Commenter in table 5 of its March 9, 2015 comments indicates a general improving trend in ozone air quality for the specific counties the Commenter included. The data could equally be used to indicate improving ozone air quality based on existing measures in the Pennsylvania SIP.

Moreover, the CAA recognizes and has provisions to address changes in air quality over time, such as an area slipping from attainment to nonattainment or changing from nonattainment to attainment. These include provisions providing for redesignation in section 107(d) and provisions in section 110(k)(5) allowing EPA to call on the state to revise its SIP, as appropriate.

The Commenter suggests that EPA must disapprove the Pennsylvania ozone infrastructure SIP because the fact that a few areas in Pennsylvania recently had air quality data slightly above the standard therefore proves that the infrastructure SIP is inadequate to demonstrate maintenance of the ozone NAAQS for those areas. EPA disagrees with the Commenter because EPA does not believe that section 110(a)(2)(A) requires detailed planning SIPs demonstrating either attainment or maintenance for specific geographic areas of the state. The infrastructure SIP is triggered by promulgation of the NAAQS, not designation. Moreover, infrastructure SIPs are due three years following promulgation of the NAAQS and designations are not due until two years (or in some cases three years) following promulgation of the NAAQS. Thus, during a significant portion of the period that a state has available for developing the infrastructure SIP, it does not know what the designation will be for individual areas of the state.26 In light of the structure of the CAA, EPA's long-standing position regarding infrastructure SIPs is that they are general planning SIPs to ensure that the state has adequate resources and authority to implement a NAAQS in general throughout the state and not detailed attainment and maintenance plans for each individual area of the state.

26 While it is true that there may be some monitors within a state with values so high as to make a nonattainment designation of the county with that monitor almost a certainty, the geographic boundaries of the nonattainment area associated with that monitor would not be known until EPA issues final designations. Moreover, the five areas of concern to the Commenter do not fit that description in any event.

EPA's interpretation that infrastructure SIPs are more general planning SIPs is consistent with the statute as understood in light of its history and structure as explained previously in response to prior comments. While at one time section 110 did provide the only detailed SIP planning provisions for states and specified that such plans must provide for attainment of the NAAQS, part D of title I of the CAA (not CAA section 110) governs the substantive planning process, including planning for attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS.

For the reasons explained by EPA in this action, EPA disagrees with the Commenter that EPA must disapprove an infrastructure SIP revision if there are monitored violations of the standard in the state and the section 110(a)(2)(A) revision does not have detailed plans for demonstrating how the state will bring that area into attainment or ensure maintenance of the NAAQS. Rather, EPA believes that the proper inquiry at this juncture is whether the state has met the basic structural SIP requirements appropriate at the point in time EPA is acting upon the submittal. EPA's NPR and TSD for this rulemaking address why the Pennsylvania SIP meets the basic structural SIP requirements as to the elements addressed in section 110(a)(2) in the NPR for the 2008 ozone NAAQS.

As addressed in EPA's proposed approval for this rule, Pennsylvania submitted a list of existing emission reduction measures in the SIP that control emissions of NOX and VOCs. Pennsylvania's SIP revision reflects numerous provisions that have the ability to reduce ground level ozone and its precursors. The Pennsylvania SIP relies on measures and programs used to implement previous ozone NAAQS. Because there is no substantive difference between the previous ozone NAAQS and the more recent ozone NAAQS, other than the level of the standard, the provisions relied on by Pennsylvania will provide benefits for the new NAAQS; in other words, the measures reduce overall ground-level ozone and its precursors and are not limited to reducing ozone levels to meet one specific NAAQS. Although additional control measures for ozone precursors such as those mentioned by the Commenter may be considered by PADEP and could be submitted with an infrastructure SIP, these additional measures are not a requirement in order for Pennsylvania to meet CAA section 110(a)(2)(A). In approving Pennsylvania's infrastructure SIP revision, EPA is affirming that Pennsylvania has sufficient authority to take the types of actions required by the CAA in order to bring such areas back into attainment.

Finally, EPA appreciates the Commenter's information regarding EGU NOX control measures and reduction efficiencies as well as emissions limitations applicable to new or modified EGUs which were set during the PSD or NSR permit process. Additional NOX regulations on emissions from EGUs would likely reduce ozone levels further in one or more areas in Pennsylvania. Congress established the CAA such that each state has primary responsibility for assuring air quality within the state and each state is first given the opportunity to determine an emission reduction program for its areas subject to EPA approval, with such approval dependent upon whether the SIP as a whole meets the applicable requirements of the CAA. See Virginia v. EPA, 108 F.3d at 1410. The Commonwealth could choose to consider additional control measures for NOX at EGUs to ensure attainment and maintenance of the ozone NAAQS as Pennsylvania moves forward to meet the more prescriptive planning requirements of the CAA in the future. However, as we have explained, the Commonwealth is not required to regulate such sources for purposes of meeting the infrastructure SIP requirements of CAA section 110(a)(2).

In addition, emission limits with the shorter-term averaging rates suggested by the Commenter could be considered within the part D planning process to ensure attainment and maintenance of the 2008 ozone NAAQS. As EPA finds Pennsylvania's NOX and VOC provisions presently in the SIP sufficient for infrastructure SIP purposes and specifically for CAA section 110(a)(2)(A), further consideration of averaging times is not appropriate or relevant at this time. Thus, EPA disagrees with the Commenter that Pennsylvania's ozone infrastructure SIP must be disapproved for failure to contain sufficient measures to ensure attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS.

Comment 11: The Commenter states enforceable emission limits are necessary to avoid future nonattainment designations in areas where Pennsylvania's monitoring network has shown “exceedances” with the 2008 ozone NAAQS in recent years. The Commenter stated EPA must address inadequacies in enforceable emission limitations relied upon by Pennsylvania for its ozone infrastructure SIP to comply with CAA section 110(a)(2)(A) and stated EPA must disapprove the ozone infrastructure SIP to ensure large sources of NOX and VOCs cannot contribute to exceedances of the ozone NAAQS and prohibit attainment and maintenance of the ozone NAAQS in all of Pennsylvania.

Response 11: For the reasons previously discussed, EPA disagrees with the Commenter that we must disapprove the Pennsylvania ozone infrastructure SIP because it does not demonstrate how areas that may be newly violating the ozone NAAQS since the time of designation can be brought back into attainment. Enforceable emission limitations to avoid future nonattainment designations are not required for EPA to approve an infrastructure SIP under CAA section 110, and any emission limitations needed to assure attainment and maintenance with the ozone NAAQS will be determined by Pennsylvania and reviewed by EPA as part of the part D attainment SIP planning process. Thus, EPA disagrees with the Commenter that EPA must disapprove the ozone infrastructure SIP to ensure large sources of NOX and VOC do not contribute to exceedances of the NAAQS or prohibit implementation, attainment or maintenance of the ozone NAAQS. As explained in the NPR and TSD, Pennsylvania has sufficient emission limitations and measures to address NOX and VOC emissions for CAA section 110(a)(2)(A).

III. Final Action

EPA is approving the following elements of Pennsylvania's June 15, 2014 SIP revisions for the 2008 ozone NAAQS and the 2010 SO2 NAAQS: Section 110(a)(2)(A), (B), (C), (D)(i)(II) (PSD requirements), (D)(ii), (E), (F), (G), (H), (J), (K), (L), and (M). Pennsylvania's SIP revisions provide the basic program elements specified in Section 110(a)(2) necessary to implement, maintain, and enforce the 2008 ozone NAAQS and the 2010 SO2 NAAQS. This final rulemaking action does not include action on section 110(a)(2)(I) which pertains to the nonattainment planning requirements of part D, Title I of the CAA, because this element is not required to be submitted by the 3-year submission deadline of section 110(a)(1) of the CAA, and will be addressed in a separate process. This final rulemaking action also does not include action on section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) for interstate transport for the 2008 ozone or the 2010 SO2 NAAQS as Pennsylvania's July 15, 2014 SIP submissions did not address this element for either NAAQS nor does this rulemaking include any action on section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) for visibility protection for either NAAQS. While Pennsylvania's July 15, 2014 SIP submissions for the 2008 ozone and 2010 SO2 NAAQS included provisions addressing visibility protection, EPA will take later, separate action on this element for both of these NAAQS.

IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews A. General Requirements

Under the CAA, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP submission that complies with the provisions of the CAA and applicable Federal regulations. 42 U.S.C. 7410(k); 40 CFR 52.02(a). Thus, in reviewing SIP submissions, EPA's role is to approve state choices, provided that they meet the criteria of the CAA. Accordingly, this action merely approves state law as meeting Federal requirements and does not impose additional requirements beyond those imposed by state law. For that reason, this action:

• Is not a “significant regulatory action” subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget under Executive Order 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993);

• does not impose an information collection burden under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.);

• is certified as not having a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.);

• does not contain any unfunded mandate or significantly or uniquely affect small governments, as described in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-4);

• does not have Federalism implications as specified in Executive Order 13132 (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999);

• is not an economically significant regulatory action based on health or safety risks subject to Executive Order 13045 (62 FR 19885, April 23, 1997);

• is not a significant regulatory action subject to Executive Order 13211 (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001);

• is not subject to requirements of Section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995 (15 U.S.C. 272 note) because application of those requirements would be inconsistent with the CAA; and

• does not provide EPA with the discretionary authority to address, as appropriate, disproportionate human health or environmental effects, using practicable and legally permissible methods, under Executive Order 12898 (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994).

In addition, this rule does not have tribal implications as specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000), because the SIP is not approved to apply in Indian country located in the state, and EPA notes that it will not impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law.

B. Submission to Congress and the Comptroller General

The Congressional Review Act, 5 U.S.C. 801 et seq., as added by the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996, generally provides that before a rule may take effect, the agency promulgating the rule must submit a rule report, which includes a copy of the rule, to each House of the Congress and to the Comptroller General of the United States. EPA will submit a report containing this action and other required information to the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, and the Comptroller General of the United States prior to publication of the rule in the Federal Register. A major rule cannot take effect until 60 days after it is published in the Federal Register. This action is not a “major rule” as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2).

C. Petitions for Judicial Review

Under section 307(b)(1) of the CAA, petitions for judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by October 5, 2015. Filing a petition for reconsideration by the Administrator of this final rule does not affect the finality of this action for the purposes of judicial review nor does it extend the time within which a petition for judicial review may be filed, and shall not postpone the effectiveness of such rule or action.

This action pertaining to Pennsylvania's section 110(a)(2) infrastructure elements for the 2008 ozone NAAQS and 2010 SO2 NAAQS may not be challenged later in proceedings to enforce its requirements. (See section 307(b)(2).)

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Incorporation by reference, Intergovernmental relations, Nitrogen dioxide, Ozone, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Sulfur oxides, Volatile organic compounds.

Dated: July 24, 2015. William C. Early, Acting Regional Administrator, Region III.

40 CFR part 52 is amended as follows:

PART 52—APPROVAL AND PROMULGATION OF IMPLEMENTATION PLANS 1. The authority citation for part 52 continues to read as follows: Authority:

42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

Subpart NN—Pennsylvania
2. In § 52.2020, the table in paragraph (e)(1) is amended by adding two entries for “Section 110(a)(2) Infrastructure Requirements for the 2008 ozone NAAQS” and “Section 110(a)(2) Infrastructure Requirements for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS” at the end of the table to read as follows:
§ 52.2020 Identification of plan.

(e) * * *

(1) * * *

Name of non-regulatory SIP revision Applicable geographic area State
  • submittal date
  • EPA Approval date Additional explanation
    *         *         *         *         *         *         * Section 110(a)(2) Infrastructure Requirements for the 2008 ozone NAAQS Statewide 7/15/14 8/5/15 [Insert Federal Register citation] This rulemaking action addresses the following CAA elements: 110(a)(2)(A), (B), (C), (D)(i)(II) (prevention of significant deterioration), (D)(ii), (E), (F), (G), (H), (J), (K), (L), and (M). Section 110(a)(2) Infrastructure Requirements for the 2010 SO2 NAAQS Statewide 7/15/14 8/5/15 [Insert Federal Register citation] This rulemaking action addresses the following CAA elements: 110(a)(2)(A), (B), (C), (D)(i)(II) (prevention of significant deterioration), (D)(ii), (E), (F), (G), (H), (J), (K), (L), and (M).
    [FR Doc. 2015-19090 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Office of the Secretary 49 CFR Part 27 RIN 2105-AD91 [Docket No. DOT-OST-2011-0182] Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability in Programs or Activities Receiving Federal Financial Assistance (U.S. Airports) AGENCY:

    Office of the Secretary, Department of Transportation (DOT).

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department is issuing a final rule to amend its rules implementing section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which requires accessibility in airport terminal facilities that receive Federal financial assistance. The final rule includes new provisions related to service animal relief areas and captioning of televisions and audio-visual displays that are similar to existing requirements applicable to U.S. and foreign air carriers under the Department's Air Carrier Access (ACAA) regulations. The final rule also reorganizes a provision concerning mechanical lifts for enplaning and deplaning passengers with mobility impairments, and amends this provision to require airports to work not only with U.S. carriers but also foreign air carriers to ensure that lifts are available where level entry loading bridges are not available. This final rule applies to airport facilities located in the United States with 10,000 or more annual enplanements that receive Federal financial assistance.

    DATES:

    This rule is effective October 5, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Maegan L. Johnson, Senior Trial Attorney, Office of the Assistant General Counsel for Aviation Enforcement and Proceedings, Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Room W96-409, Washington, DC 20590, (202) 366-9342. You may also contact Blane A. Workie, Assistant General Counsel for Aviation Enforcement and Proceedings, Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Room W96-464, Washington, DC 20590, (202) 366-9342. Arrangements to receive this notice in an alternative format may be made by contacting the above named individuals.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    On November 1, 1996, the U.S. Department of Transportation amended its regulation implementing section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 to create a new section, 49 CFR 27.72, concerning regulatory requirements for U.S. airports to ensure the availability of lifts to provide level-entry boarding for passengers with disabilities flying on small aircraft.1 See 61 FR 56409. This requirement paralleled the lift provisions applicable to U.S. carriers in the ACAA rule, 14 CFR part 382. On May 13, 2008, the Department of Transportation published a final rule that amended part 382 by making it applicable to foreign air carriers. See 73 FR 27614. This amendment also included provisions that require U.S. and foreign air carriers, in cooperation with airport operators, to provide service animal relief areas for service animals that accompany passengers departing, connecting, or arriving at U.S. airports. See 14 CFR 382.51(a)(5). Part 382 also now requires U.S. and foreign air carriers to enable captioning on all televisions and other audio-visual displays that are capable of displaying captioning and that are located in any portion of the airport terminal to which any passengers have access. See 14 CFR 382.51(a)(6). As a result of the 2008 amendments to Part 382, the requirements in Part 27 no longer mirrored the requirements applicable to airlines set forth in part 382 as had been intended.

    1 Recognizing the need for level-entry boarding for passengers with mobility impairments on larger aircraft, the Department extended the applicability of its 1996 rule to aircraft with a seating capacity of 31 or more passengers in 2001. See 66 FR 22107.

    On September 21, 2011, the Department issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) in Docket OST 2011-0182 titled, “Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability in Programs or Activities Receiving Federal Financial Assistance (U.S. Airports).” See 76 FR 60426 et seq. (September 29, 2011). The Department proposed to amend part 27 by inserting provisions that would require airport operators to work with carriers to establish relief areas for service animals that accompany passengers with disabilities departing, connecting, or arriving at U.S. airports; to enable high-contrast captioning 2 on certain televisions and audio-visual displays in U.S. airports; and to negotiate in good faith with foreign air carriers to provide, operate, and maintain lifts for boarding and deplaning where level-entry loading bridges are not available. The Department also proposed updates in the NPRM to outdated references that existed in 49 CFR part 27 by deleting obsolete references to the Uniform Federal Accessibility Standards in 49 CFR 27.3(b), and changing the language “appendix A to part 37 of this title” to “appendices B and D of 36 CFR part 1191, as modified by appendix A to part 37 of this title.”

    2 High-contrast captioning is defined in 14 CFR 382.3 as “captioning that is at least as easy to read as white letters on a consistent black background.” As explained in the preamble to Part 382, defining “high-contrast captioning” in such a way not only ensures that captioning will be effective but also allows carriers to use existing or future technologies to achieve captioning that are as effective as white on black or more so.

    The Department asked a series of questions regarding the proposed amendments to part 27. We received 481 comments in response to the NPRM, the majority of which were received from individual commenters. The Department also received a number of comments from disability organizations, airports, and airport associations. We have carefully reviewed and considered these comments. The significant, relevant issues raised by the public comments to the NPRM are set forth below, as is the Department's response.

    Service Animal Relief Areas

    In the NPRM, the Department sought comment on whether it should adopt requirements regarding the design of service animal relief areas and what, if any, provisions the rule should include concerning the dimensions, materials used, and maintenance for service animal relief areas. The Department explained that commenters should consider the size and surface material of the area, maintenance, and distance to service animal relief areas, which could vary based on the size and configuration of the airport. The Department also sought comment on the compliance date for these requirements.

    Comments

    Commenters that indicated that they are service animal users, and other individual commenters, favor the construction of service animal relief areas on non-cement surfaces. These commenters also expressed a desire to see overhangs covering service animal relief areas to protect service animal users from the elements. Airport and airport organization commenters, however, do not support specific mandates regarding the design, number, or location of service animal relief areas, and encourage the Department to adopt the general language that appears in part 382. Airports and airport organizations explain that using broader guidelines with respect to the design, materials and maintenance of service animal relief areas would allow airports to try new materials in the future as technology improves, and would allow airports to design service animal relief areas based on that airport's unique geographical location.

    The Department also sought comment on what would be an appropriate number of service animal relief areas in an airport and how that number should be determined. For example, should the number be determined by the size or configuration of the airport (e.g., the number, location, and design of terminals and concourses) and/or the amount of time it would take for an individual with a disability to reach a service animal relief area from any gate within the airport?

    The majority of individual commenters and disability organizations favored a rule that would require at least one relief area in each airport terminal. These commenters also suggest, however, that if the rule were to only require one relief area per terminal, the airport should provide either escort service or transportation to service animal relief areas to expedite trips to service animal relief areas. A number of individual commenters opposed using the amount of time it would take an individual with a disability to reach a relief area from a particular gate as a barometer for determining the number of required service animal relief areas an airport should have, reasoning that walking time varies depending upon the individual. Some individual commenters, however, did suggest imposing a blanket standard of one service animal relief area per every 15 gates or at every quarter of a mile.

    Finally, with respect to the placement of service animal relief areas, the Department sought comment on whether service animal relief areas should be located inside or outside the sterile 3 area of an airport. The Department presented this question to the public after the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) in May 2011 revised its guidelines, “Recommended Security Guidelines for Airport Planning, Design and Construction,” making clear that airports may provide Service Animal Relief Areas in sterile areas of the airport. There is overwhelming support by individual commenters and disability organizations that at least one relief area should be located in the sterile area of each airport terminal. Airports and airport associations, however, advocate that the rule not specifically mandate that service animal relief areas be located in the sterile area of an airport. These groups argue that the determination as to whether to place service animal relief areas in the sterile area of an airport should be made on an airport-by-airport basis.

    3 The sterile area is the area between the TSA passenger screening checkpoint and the aircraft boarding gates. See 49 CFR 1540.5.

    The Department also sought comment on whether the rule should include a provision requiring airports to specify the location of service animal relief areas on airport Web sites, maps and/or diagrams of the airport, including whether the relief area is located inside or outside a sterile area. Individual commenters support requiring airports to specify relief area locations on Web sites, maps and signage, but also suggest that airports make braille maps available to individuals with visual impairments to locate service animal relief areas. Some individual commenters also suggest that the Department establish a “universal symbol” for service animal relief areas, which could be used by airports throughout the country to identify service animal relief areas. Conversely, the Airports Council International—North America states that additional direction signage within the terminal building could potentially overload passengers and become counterproductive in assisting passengers with locating service animal relief areas. The organization reasoned that because carriers provide escorts to passengers with service animals, escorts who know the location of the service animal relief areas should be sufficient.

    Anticipating that its final rule might include requirements with respect to service animal relief areas that are more involved than the requirements for U.S. and foreign carriers that exist in part 382, the Department solicited comment in the NPRM on whether any requirement that applies to U.S. airports should also be applied to U.S. and foreign carriers. All commenters that addressed the Department's inquiry agreed that any requirement that applied to U.S. airports should also be applied to both U.S. and foreign carriers.

    Finally, the NPRM sought comment on whether the final rule regarding establishing service animal relief areas should take effect 120 days after its publication in the Federal Register. While the majority of individual commenters believe that 120 days is an appropriate amount of time to comply with the requirements of the rule regarding service animal relief areas, airports and airport organizations generally support a longer timeframe to comply with the requirements. These groups argue that airports need additional time to raise revenue to implement any additional requirements with respect to service animal relief areas that may be imposed by the rule.

    DOT Response

    Having fully considered the comments, the Department has decided that it will not adopt specific requirements with respect to the dimensions, design, materials, and maintenance of service animal relief areas, with the exception that such service animal relief areas be wheelchair accessible. While the Department specifically mandates in the final rule that service animal relief areas be wheelchair accessible, this requirement, although new to part 27, is already a requirement that is imposed upon U.S. airports by the Americans with Disabilities Act. Nonetheless, the Department decided to include this mandate in the final rule to remind U.S. airports of their obligation to ensure that service animal relief areas are wheelchair accessible.

    This final rule, similar to part 382, also requires airports to consult with service animal training organizations regarding the design, dimensions, materials and maintenance of service animal relief areas. We expect that most airports will likely choose to work with local chapters of national service animal training organizations to comply with this requirement as those organizations may be better suited to make specific suggestions that are tailored to individual airports though many service animal training organizations can undoubtedly be a useful resource for U.S airports.

    With respect to the number of service animal relief areas required at an airport, the Department has decided to require airports to provide at least one service animal relief area in each airport terminal. As proposed in the NPRM, the Department is using airport terminals as the standard upon which airports must determine the number of required service animal relief areas, rather than using the amount of time it would take for an individual with a disability to reach a service animal relief area from a particular gate. The Department notes that while some individual commenters and disability organizations suggest that we adopt requirements in part 27 that would require escort service to relief areas in the event that the Department decided to adopt the requirement for a single relief area per terminal, part 382 already requires U.S. and foreign air carriers to provide, in cooperation with U.S. airport operators, escorts to individuals with disabilities to service animal relief areas upon request. See 14 CFR 382.91(c). As such, the Department is not imposing a requirement for U.S. airports to provide escort service to relief areas.

    This final rule does require that airports not only have at least one relief area per terminal but also that this service animal relief area, with limited exceptions, be located in the sterile area of each airport terminal to ensure that individuals with service animals are able to access service animal relief areas when traveling, particularly during layovers. Recognizing that the TSA may prohibit a particular airport from locating a relief area in the sterile area of a terminal, the rule provides airports with an exception to this requirement if TSA prohibits a particular airport from locating a relief area in the sterile area of a terminal for security-related reasons. The Department also realizes that, based on an airport's configuration, a relief area in the non-sterile area of an airport may be more desirable to relief area users. As such, the Department is allowing airports the option of placing a relief area in a location other than the sterile area of a terminal if a service animal training organization, the airport, and the carriers in the terminal in which the relief area will be located agree that a relief area would be better placed outside the terminal's sterile area instead of inside the sterile area. The airport must, however, document and retain a record of this agreement.

    The Department decided not to adopt a provision in the rule requiring airports to specify the location of service animal relief areas on airport Web sites, on any airport map intended for use by travelers, and on signage located throughout the airport. The Department reasoned that a regulation requiring airports, which have already been equipped with service animal relief areas for a number of years as a result of the requirements in Part 382, to specify the location of service animal relief areas is unnecessary as a number of airports already have signage indicating the location of service animal relief areas. Airports also generally aim to provide signage in accordance with internationally-agreed standards as set forth in ICAO Annex 9. If the Department finds that there is confusion about the location of service animal relief areas at U.S. airports, it will revisit this issue.

    Finally, the Department is providing U.S. airports one year to comply with the requirement to establish at least one service animal relief areas per airport terminal. The Department believes this is sufficient time for U.S. airports to raise the needed revenue 4 and determine the appropriate location as well as the design of the service animal relief areas in consultation with service animal training organizations and in cooperation with airlines.

    4 See NPRM wherein the Department estimates that the initial cost to establish a relief area for each terminal is approximately $5,000 per terminal, with low- and high-cost alternatives ranging from $1,000 to $10,000.

    Information for Passengers

    The Department sought comment in the NPRM on its proposal to require airport operators to enable high-contrast captioning on television and audio-visual displays in U.S. airports, which is a requirement that is imposed upon U.S. and foreign carriers in part 382 for the portion of the terminal facilities they own, lease or control at U.S. airports to which passengers have access. The Department also sought comment on whether a thirty-day implementation period is adequate.

    Comments

    Airport and airport organization commenters suggest that the Department only require those televisions and audio-visual displays owned or controlled by airports to be subject to the captioning requirement. Individual commenters, however, favor a blanket requirement that captioning be enabled on all televisions throughout the airport. Given the non-burdensome nature of this requirement, the Department proposed a thirty-day implementation period in the NPRM. All but one of the nine commenters that submitted comments on this subject agree that 30 days is a sufficient implementation period for this requirement, while one airport commenter suggests a 90 to 120 day implementation period for larger airports with more televisions.

    The Department sought comment on whether it should require U.S. airports to display messages and pages broadcast over public address systems on video monitors so that persons who are deaf or hard-of-hearing do not miss important information available to others at an airport. The Department also sought comment on whether visual display of information announced over the public address system is the best means to disseminate airport-related announcements to passengers with hearing impairments. Some airports and airport organizations commented that while displaying messages on video monitors is one method of providing information to passengers with a hearing impairment, the Department should not adopt a rule specifically requiring that this method be used. Individual commenters suggest, however, that in addition to the use of video monitors to communicate with individuals with a hearing impairment throughout the airport, the Department could require airports to install hearing loops at ticket counters and in the gate areas of airports and LED screens reserved for the display of essential announcements.

    The Department also sought comment as to whether it should establish a performance standard for providing information to individuals with hearing impairments rather than require airports to use a particular medium (e.g., video monitors, wireless pagers, erasable boards). Some airport and airport organization commenters support the adoption of performance standards rather than specific requirements, in order to allow airports the flexibility to determine the most effective way to communicate with passengers and to account for developing technologies.

    The Department also asked interested persons to comment on whether the Department should simply require that airports provide the text of the announcements made over the public address system promptly or should instead require that there be simultaneous visual transmission of the information. While one airport organization supports providing the text of the announcement promptly, as the display of the text usually closely follows announcements made over public address systems, a disability rights organization supports simultaneous transmission of the information through public information displays.

    Finally, the Department sought comment on whether all announcements made through the public address system should be displayed in a manner that is accessible to deaf and hard-of-hearing travelers, or only those announcements that are essential. The Department also sought comment on the amount of time and the cost involved in establishing such a system. Individual commenters support displaying all announcements in a manner accessible to deaf and hard-of-hearing travelers, with one commenter suggesting that essential messages should be given priority over non-essential messages. Airports and airport associations advocate that only essential messages be displayed in an accessible manner so as not to overwhelm a technology system and dilute the information that passengers need. With respect to the amount of time and cost involved in establishing such a system, one individual commenter and one disability organization suggest that 30 days would be a sufficient amount of time for airports to establish the system, while an airport commenter contends that 30 days is too short a time period to establish such a system and suggests a two-year implementation time period. Furthermore, one airport commenter states that it would cost $100,000 to establish such a system as long as the capability exists in the airport's visual display software. The airport further explains that the cost to establish such a system would be difficult to determine if the airport didn't have software capable of displaying visual pages.

    DOT's Response

    After carefully considering the comments the Department received on this subject, we have decided to adopt the proposed language in the NPRM, which closely follows the current requirements that apply to U.S. and foreign carriers in part 382. As such, airport operators will be required to enable or ensure high-contrast captioning at all times on televisions and other audio-visual displays capable of displaying captions located in any gate area, ticketing area, first-class or other passenger lounge provided by a U.S. or foreign carrier, or any common area of the terminal to which passengers have access. In the case of televisions and other audio-visual displays located in space leased by a shop or restaurant, the airport operator is obligated to ensure by contract or other means that the shop or restaurant enables the captioning feature on its televisions and other audio-visual displays in a manner that meets this obligation.

    The Department decided to adopt the language in the NPRM reasoning that the adoption of a rule requiring airports to enable the captioning feature is not a costly or otherwise onerous requirement as most televisions currently in use at U.S. airports have captioning capabilities. Notwithstanding this, because the Department received such a limited number of comments with respect to its questions regarding how to best provide information to deaf and hard-of-hearing passengers in airports, we have decided not to impose any new requirements on this subject that exceed the requirements that currently exist with respect to U.S. and foreign air carriers in part 382.

    Boarding Lifts for Aircraft

    The Department sought comment as to whether it should require U.S. airport operators to negotiate in good faith with foreign carriers to ensure that ramps or mechanical lifts are available for enplaning and deplaning passengers with disabilities.

    Comments

    We received one comment from an airport organization in response to our inquiry. This commenter supports airports negotiating with foreign carriers to ensure the availability of lifts. The organization reasons that this requirement would ensure that all parties would be held accountable for providing boarding assistance to passengers.

    With respect to our last inquiry, whether the Department should require airports to purchase additional lifts, the only comment we received was from an airport that opposes adopting such a requirement because of the potential financial impact it could have on airports.

    DOT's Response

    The Department has considered the two comments received with respect to the questions it posed regarding boarding lifts for aircraft. The Department has decided to adopt the proposed language in the NPRM, which requires airports to negotiate with foreign carriers, in addition to U.S. carriers, to ensure the provision of lifts, ramps and other devices used for boarding and deplaning where level-entry boarding is not available. This requirement only imposes the same requirement for foreign carriers that has existed for airport operators with respect to U.S. carriers. Due to the lack of commentary from the public, the Department has decided to refrain from imposing additional requirements on airports to purchase additional lifts.

    Regulatory Analyses and Notices A. Executive Order 12866 (Regulatory Planning and Review), Executive Order 13563 (Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review), and DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures

    This action has been determined not to be significant under Executive Order 12866 and the Department's Regulatory Policies and Procedures. It has not been reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget in accordance with Executive Order 12866 and Executive Order 13563.

    Executive Order 13563 directs agencies to propose or adopt a regulation only upon a reasoned determination that its benefits justify its costs, tailor the regulation to impose the least burden on society consistent with obtaining the regulatory objectives, and in choosing among alternative regulatory approaches, select those approaches that maximize net benefits. Executive Order 13563 recognizes that some benefits and costs are difficult to quantify and provides that, where appropriate and permitted by law, agencies may consider and discuss qualitatively values that are difficult or impossible to quantify, including equity, human dignity, fairness, and distributive impacts.

    Of the three provisions in the final rule, the only element of the final rule that will involve a substantial cost to airports is the requirement that service animal relief areas for service animals be located inside the sterile area of each terminal. The relief area requirement in the final rule promotes the aforementioned qualitative values by ensuring equal access to air transportation by passengers with disabilities traveling with services animals. In the Department's view, the non-quantifiable benefits associated with requiring at least one relief area per airport terminal and requiring this service animal relief area be in the sterile area of the airport with limited exceptions is wholly consistent with the ACAA's mandate to eliminate discrimination against individuals with disabilities in air transportation.

    The primary non-quantifiable benefit to a passenger with a disability traveling with a service animal is that he or she does not have to leave the sterile area of the terminal to access the airport's relief area. While the Department does not have sufficient information to quantify the value of time savings associated with requiring that service animal relief areas be located in the sterile area of the airport, a number of commenters to the NPRM commented that they were often forced to create itineraries with longer layover times because of the amount of time it takes for passengers with a disability to locate service animal relief areas and the amount of time it takes to exit the sterile area, relieve a service animal, and pass through security again. The Department recognizes that individuals with disabilities may be prevented from visiting service animal relief areas located outside the sterile area of an airport during a layover. Furthermore, travelers with disabilities that have a layover may not be able to access landside service animal relief areas due to time constraints and disability-related reasons. The new requirement in the rule requiring airports to place a relief area in the sterile area of each terminal of the airport will allow such travelers access to service animal relief areas.5

    5 See the Transportation Security Administration's (TSA) Recommended Security Guidelines for Airport Planning, Design and Construction, May of 2011. http://www.tsa.gov/assets/pdf/airport_security_design_guidelines.pdf.

    Other non-quantifiable benefits associated with locating service animal relief areas in the sterile area of each airport terminal include the ability for passengers to consider more flight options. Those passengers previously limited to selecting itineraries with extended layover periods may consider travel itineraries with shorter layover times once service animal relief areas are located in the sterile area of an airport. In addition, locating service animal relief areas in the sterile area would promote independence among those passengers accompanied by service animals as they may be able to independently locate service animal relief areas without relying on the assistance of escorts, which are now commonly used to assist passengers traveling with service animals in traversing through the airports and exiting and reentering the sterile area during a layover. Locating service animal relief areas in the sterile area will also reduce the amount of effort and discomfort experienced by individuals with disabilities when trying to relieve their service animals during a layover.

    The final rule also offers the benefits of improved convenience to non-disabled persons accompanied by an animal or pet while at the airport. Although these benefits are not encompassed by the rule's purpose, individuals traveling with pets or security dogs trained to detect security threats may also find it convenient to use service animal relief areas located in the secure area of the airport.

    As stated above, the final regulatory assessment estimates that there will be some cost for airports to implement the service animal relief area requirements in the final rule. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) lists 387 airports in the United States. Of these, 29 are large hubs, 35 are medium hubs, 74 are small hubs, and 249 are non-hubs, which are defined as having more than 10,000 passenger enplanements per year but less than 0.05% of the overall total enplanements. As we explained in the NPRM, there is no consistent method for assigning a number of terminals to an airport given the widely divergent plans for airports. Notwithstanding, we were able to use the airport category defined by the FAA in terms of the number of enplanements to estimate the number of terminals in a given airport. Based on this system, we assume that large hubs have an average of 7 terminals; medium hubs average 5 terminals, small hubs average 3 terminals, and non-hubs average 1 terminal per airport. As a result, we estimate that 849 terminals would be affected by this service animal relief requirement in the final rule. We do note that this is a high estimation given that some airports may have already installed service animal relief areas within the sterile area of the airport; however, because most service animal relief areas currently reside outside of the sterile area, we expect that most of these terminals would be impacted by the requirements in the final rule.

    The final regulatory assessment estimates that the service animal relief area requirements will cost those 387 airports affected by the rule approximately $88.1 million over 20 years, discounted at 7%. As explained above, the total cost of installing service animal relief areas varies by airport as the cost incurred by an airport will depend upon the number of terminals in the airport. This cost estimate, however, considers the cost of construction and maintenance of service animal relief areas and the calculation of the amount of foregone rent that airports may forfeit by using space in an airport terminal for service animal relief areas that, conceivably, would have been rented out to restaurants or other vendors. We note that the cost of foregone rent and construction materials is also dependent upon airport size as rent space and materials appear to be more expensive at larger airports. This cost estimate also factors in the cost incurred by airports from consulting with service animal training organizations on the design, dimensions, materials, maintenance, and location of service animal relief areas.

    While the final regulatory assessment estimates that there will be some cost for airports to implement the service animal relief area requirements in the final rule, the boarding lift requirement and the captioning requirement are expected to have minimal financial impact on airports. The requirements in the final rule related to lifts will not require airports to purchase additional lifts because the airports with 10,000 or more enplanements will already have lifts available as a result of the existing agreements between airports and U.S. carriers requiring the availability of lifts at those airports.

    There is, however, a cost associated with the enabling of captioning on airport-controlled televisions. The estimated total present value over 20 years to enable captioning on television is $410,840, discounted at 7%. The respective annualized value is $38,780. This figure is based on the assumption that, initially, captioning will need to be enabled on 100% of airport-controlled televisions; in subsequent years, captioning will only need to be reactivated on 10% per annum of those television in which captioning was initially activated.

    B. Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)

    This final rule has been analyzed in accordance with the principles and criteria contained in Executive Order 13132 (“Federalism”). This final rule does not impose any regulation that: (1) Has substantial direct effects on the States, the relationship between the national government and the States, or the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government; or (2) imposes substantial direct compliance costs on States and local governments. Therefore, the consultation and funding requirements of Executive Order 13132 do not apply.

    C. Executive Order 13084

    This final rule has been analyzed in accordance with the principles and criteria contained in Executive Order 13175 (“Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments”). The funding and consultation requirements of Executive Order 13084 do not apply because this final rule does not significantly or uniquely affect the communities of the Indian tribal governments and does not impose substantial direct compliance costs.

    D. Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq., as amended by the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA) of 1996), requires an agency to review regulations to assess their impact on small entities, including small businesses, small nonprofit organizations and small governmental jurisdictions. Privately owned airports with annual revenues that do not exceed $32.5 million are considered small businesses by the size standards created by the Small Business Administration. Furthermore, publicly owned airports are categorized as small entities if they are owned by a jurisdiction with fewer than 50,000 inhabitants. In light of this standard, we estimate that approximately 55 of the 387 airports affected by the final rule are considered small entities. Therefore, the Department has determined that this rule will have an impact on some small entities. However, the Department has determined that the impact on entities affected by the rule will not be significant. We estimate that the cost of constructing and maintaining service animal relief areas at those 55 airports, assuming that those airports contain only 1 terminal, is approximately $4 million over 20 years at a 7% discount rate. Considering that the combined annual revenue of small-hub and non-hub airports in 2013 alone was $2.4 billion, the costs associated with this rule will not be significant.

    E. Paperwork Reduction Act

    Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), a Federal agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a valid control number assigned by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) (Pub. L. 104-13, 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.). The Department may not impose a penalty on persons for violating information collection requirements when an information collection required to have a current OMB control number does not have one.

    This final rule does not adopt any new information collection requirements subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA).

    F. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

    The Department has determined that the requirements of Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 do not apply to this notice.

    G. National Environmental Policy Act

    The Department has analyzed the environmental impacts of this proposed action pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.) and has determined that it is categorically excluded pursuant to DOT Order 5610.1C, Procedures for Considering Environmental Impacts (44 FR 56420, Oct. 1, 1979). Categorical exclusions are actions identified in an agency's NEPA implementing procedures that do not normally have a significant impact on the environment and therefore do not require either an environmental assessment (EA) or environmental impact statement (EIS). See 40 CFR 1508.4. In analyzing the applicability of a categorical exclusion, the agency must also consider whether extraordinary circumstances are present that would warrant the preparation of an EA or EIS. Id. Paragraph 3.c.6.i of DOT Order 5610.1C categorically excludes “[a]ctions relating to consumer protection, including regulations.” The purpose of this rulemaking to amend the Department's regulations implementing section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act to require service animal relief areas and captioning of televisions and audio-visual displays. The Department does not anticipate any environmental impacts, and there are no extraordinary circumstances present in connection with this rulemaking.

    List of Subjects in 49 CFR Part 27

    Airports, Civil rights, Individuals with disabilities, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, the Department of Transportation is amending 49 CFR part 27 as follows:

    PART 27—NONDISCRIMINATION ON THE BASIS OF DISABILITY IN PROGRAMS OR ACTIVITIES RECEIVING FEDERAL FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE 1. The authority citation for Part 27 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    Sec. 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended (29 U.S.C. 794); sec. 16(a) and (d) of the Federal Transit Act of 1964, as amended (49 U.S.C. 5310(a) and (f); sec. 165(b) of the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1973, as amended (23 U.S.C. 142 nt.).

    2. In § 27.3, paragraph (b) is revised to read as follows:
    § 27.3 Applicability.

    (b) Design, construction, or alteration of buildings or other fixed facilities by public entities subject to part 37 of this title shall be in conformance with appendices B and D of 36 CFR part 1191, as modified by appendix A to part 37 of this title. All other entities subject to section 504 shall design, construct, or alter buildings, or other fixed facilities, in conformance with appendices B and D of 36 CFR part 1191, as modified by appendix A to part 37 of this title.

    3. In § 27.71, paragraphs (h) and (i) are added to read as follows:
    § 27.71 Airport facilities.

    (h) Service animal relief areas. Each airport with 10,000 or more annual enplanements shall cooperate with airlines that own, lease, or control terminal facilities at that airport to provide wheelchair accessible animal relief areas for service animals that accompany passengers departing, connecting, or arriving at the airport subject to the following requirements:

    (1) Airports must consult with one or more service animal training organizations regarding the design, dimensions, materials and maintenance of service animal relief areas;

    (2) Airports must establish at least one relief area in each airport terminal;

    (3) Airports must establish the relief area required by paragrah (h)(2) of this section in the sterile area of each airport terminal unless:

    (i) The Transportation Security Administration prohibits the airport from locating a relief area in the sterile area, or

    (ii) A service animal training organization, the airport, and the carriers in the terminal in which the relief area will be located agree that a relief area would be better placed outside the terminal's sterile area. In that event, the airport must retain documentation evidencing the recommendation that the relief area be located outside of the sterile area; and

    (4) To the extent airports have established service animal relief areas prior to the effective date of this paragraph:

    (i) Airports that have not consulted with a service animal training organization shall consult with one or more such organizations regarding the sufficiency of all existing service animal relief areas,

    (ii) Airports shall meet the requirements of this section August 4, 2016.

    (i) High-contrast captioning (captioning that is at least as easy to read as white letters on a consistent black background) on television and audio-visual displays. This paragraph applies to airports with 10,000 or more annual enplanements.

    (1) Airport operators must enable or ensure high-contrast captioning at all times on all televisions and other audio-visual displays that are capable of displaying captions and that are located in any gate area, ticketing area, first-class or other passenger lounge provided by a U.S. or foreign carrier, or any common area of the terminal to which any passengers have access and that are owned, leased, or controlled by the airport.

    (2) With respect to any televisions and other audio-visual displays located in any gate area, ticketing area, first-class or other passenger lounge provided by a U.S. or foreign carrier, or any common area of the terminal to which any passengers have access that provide passengers with safety briefings, information, or entertainment that do not have high-contrast captioning capability, an airport operator must replace or ensure the replacement of these devices with equipment that does have such capability whenever such equipment is replaced in the normal course of operations and/or whenever areas of the terminal in which such equipment is located undergo substantial renovation or expansion.

    (3) If an airport installs new televisions and other audio-visual displays for passenger safety briefings, information, or entertainment on or after October 5, 2015, such equipment must have high-contrast captioning capability.

    4. Revise § 27.72 to read as follows:
    § 27.72 Boarding assistance for aircraft.

    (a) This section applies to airports with 10,000 or more annual enplanements.

    (b) Airports shall, in cooperation with carriers serving the airports, provide boarding assistance to individuals with disabilities using mechanical lifts, ramps, or other devices that do not require employees to lift or carry passengers up stairs. This section applies to all aircraft with a passenger capacity of 19 or more passenger seats, except as provided in paragraph (e) of this section. Paragraph (c) of this section applies to U.S. carriers and paragraph (d) of this section applies to foreign carriers.

    (c) Each airport operator shall negotiate in good faith with each U.S. carrier serving the airport concerning the acquisition and use of boarding assistance devices to ensure the provision of mechanical lifts, ramps, or other devices for boarding and deplaning where level-entry loading bridges are not available. The airport operator must have a written, signed agreement with each U.S. carrier allocating responsibility for meeting the boarding and deplaning assistance requirements of this section between or among the parties. The agreement shall be made available, on request, to representatives of the Department of Transportation.

    (1) All airport operators and U.S. carriers involved are jointly and severally responsible for the timely and complete implementation of the agreement.

    (2) The agreement shall ensure that all lifts and other accessibility equipment are maintained in proper working condition.

    (d) Each airport operator shall negotiate in good faith with each foreign carrier serving the airport concerning the acquisition and use of boarding assistance devices to ensure the provision of mechanical lifts, ramps, or other devices for boarding and deplaning where level-entry loading bridges are not available. The airport operator shall, by no later than November 3, 2015, sign a written agreement with the foreign carrier allocating responsibility for meeting the boarding and deplaning assistance requirements of this section between or among the parties. The agreement shall be made available, on request, to representatives of the Department of Transportation.

    (1) The agreement shall provide that all actions necessary to ensure accessible boarding and deplaning for passengers with disabilities are completed as soon as practicable, but no later than December 3, 2015.

    (2) All airport operators and foreign carriers involved are jointly and severally responsible for the timely and complete implementation of the agreement.

    (3) The agreement shall ensure that all lifts and other accessibility equipment are maintained in proper working condition.

    (e) Boarding assistance agreements required in paragraphs (c) and (d) of this section are not required to apply to the following situations:

    (1) Access to float planes;

    (2) Access to the following 19-seat capacity aircraft models: The Fairchild Metro, the Jetstream 31 and 32, the Beech 1900 (C and D models), and the Embraer EMB-120;

    (3) Access to any other aircraft model determined by the Department of Transportation to be unsuitable for boarding and deplaning assistance by lift, ramp, or other suitable device. The Department will make such a determination if it concludes that—

    (i) No existing boarding and deplaning assistance device on the market will accommodate the aircraft without significant risk of serious damage to the aircraft or injury to passengers or employees, or

    (ii) Internal barriers are present in the aircraft that would preclude passengers who use a boarding or aisle chair from reaching a non-exit row seat.

    (f) When level-entry boarding and deplaning assistance is not required to be provided under paragraph (e) of this section, or cannot be provided as required by paragraphs (b), (c), and (d) of this section (e.g., because of mechanical problems with a lift), boarding assistance shall be provided by any available means to which the passenger consents. However, hand-carrying (i.e., directly picking up the passenger's body in the arms of one or more carrier personnel to effect a level change the passenger needs to enter or leave the aircraft) must never be used, even if the passenger consents, unless this is the only way of evacuating the individual in the event of an emergency.

    (g) In the event that airport personnel are involved in providing boarding assistance, the airport shall ensure that they are trained to proficiency in the use of the boarding assistance equipment used at the airport and appropriate boarding assistance procedures that safeguard the safety and dignity of passengers.

    Issued this day of July 29, 2015, in Washington, DC. Anthony R. Foxx, Secretary of Transportation.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19078 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-9X-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Transit Administration 49 CFR Part 611 [Docket No. FTA-2015-0007] RIN 2132-ZA03 Notice of Availability of Final Interim Policy Guidance for the Capital Investment Grant Program AGENCY:

    Federal Transit Administration (FTA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notice of availability of final interim policy guidance.

    SUMMARY:

    The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) is announcing the availability of final interim policy guidance on the Capital Investment Grant (“CIG”) program. The final interim guidance has been placed both in the docket and on FTA's Web site. In brief, the policy guidance that FTA periodically issues on the CIG program complements the FTA regulations that govern the program. The regulations set forth the process that grant applicants must follow to be eligible for discretionary funding under the CIG program. The policy guidance provides a greater level of detail about the methods FTA uses to apply the evaluation criteria and the sequential steps a sponsor must follow in developing a project.

    DATES:

    This final policy guidance is effective August 5, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Elizabeth Day, FTA Office of Planning and Environment, telephone (202) 366-5159 or [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Pursuant to 49 U.S.C. 5309(g)(5), FTA is required to publish policy guidance on the CIG program each time the agency makes significant changes to the process and/or evaluation criteria, and in any event, at least once every two years. Also, FTA is required to invite public comment on the policy guidance, and to publish its response to comments. In this instance, FTA published proposed interim policy guidance on April 8, 2015, at 80 FR 18796 (http://www.thefederalregister.org/fdsys/pkg/FR-2015-04-08/pdf/2015-08063.pdf). The final interim policy guidance and our response to comments is available on FTA's public Web site at http://www.fta.dot.gov/newstarts and in the docket at http://www.regulations.gov.

    The final interim policy guidance addresses four subjects not addressed in either the regulations or the previous policy guidance document for the CIG program. Specifically these are: (1) The measures and breakpoints for the congestion relief criterion applicable to New Starts and Small Starts projects; (2) the evaluation and rating process for Core Capacity Improvement projects, including the measures and breakpoints for all the project justification and local financial commitment criteria applicable to those projects; (3) the prerequisites for entry into each phase of the CIG process for each type of project in the CIG program, and the requirements for completing each phase of that process; and (4) ways in which certain New Starts, Small Starts, and Core Capacity Improvement projects can qualify for “warrants” entitling them to automatic ratings on some of the evaluation criteria. This final policy guidance is characterized as “interim” because, in the near future, FTA will initiate a rulemaking to amend the regulations at 49 CFR part 611 to fully carry out the authorizing statute for the CIG program, 49 U.S.C. 5309, as amended by the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (Pub. L. 112-141; July 6, 2012) (“MAP-21”). The information gained through the public comment process on the interim policy guidance will inform the future rulemaking.

    The final interim policy guidance being published today is approximately 100 typewritten pages in length, arranged in three stand-alone chapters for each of the three types of projects eligible for CIG funds: New Starts, Small Starts, and Core Capacity Improvements. Each chapter provides a short introduction, a discussion of eligibility for that type of project, a summary of the requirements for entry into and getting through each step of the CIG process, information on each of the project evaluation criteria, and an explanation of how FTA will determine the overall rating for a project. Each type of project in the CIG program—a New Start, Small Start, or Core Capacity Improvement—is governed by a unique set of requirements, although there are many similarities amongst the three sets of requirements.

    The final interim policy guidance does not address the Program of Interrelated Projects provisions or the pilot program for expedited project delivery included in MAP-21. The Program of Interrelated Projects provisions will be addressed through future rulemaking and policy guidance updates. On July 7, 2015, FTA published in a separate Federal Register notice at 80 FR 38801 (http://www.thefederalregister.org/fdsys/pkg/FR-2015-07-07/pdf/2015-16515.pdf), a request for expressions of interest for the pilot program for expedited project delivery.

    FTA received 539 separate comments on the proposed interim policy guidance from 41 commenters, including cities, transit operators, state agencies, metropolitan planning organizations, non-profit organizations, and interested citizens. FTA's summary and response to these comments is available both on the agency's public Web site at http://www.fta.dot.gov/newstarts and in the docket at http://www.regulations.gov. The public comments are available, in their entirety, on the docket at http://www.regulations.gov.

    This final interim policy guidance is effective immediately. It provides technical details necessary for FTA to apply the project evaluation and rating criteria. Sponsors of New Starts, Small Starts, and Core Capacity projects need this final interim policy guidance to gather and submit the data and information needed by FTA to move their projects into and through the process. In turn, FTA needs this data from project sponsors to prepare the agency's annual report to Congress on capital investment funding recommendations for the forthcoming Federal fiscal year, as required by 49 U.S.C. 5309(o)(1). For these reasons, and in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. 553(d), FTA finds good cause for an exception to the requirement for 30-day publication prior to an effective date.

    Issued in Washington, DC, under the authority delegated at 49 CFR 1.91.

    Therese W. McMillan, Acting Administrator.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19200 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 300 [Docket No. 130717632-4285-02] RIN 0648-XE085 International Fisheries; Pacific Tuna Fisheries; 2015 Bigeye Tuna Longline Fishery Closure in the Eastern Pacific Ocean AGENCY:

    National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Temporary rule; closure.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS is temporarily closing the U.S. pelagic longline fishery for bigeye tuna for vessels over 24 meters in overall length in the eastern Pacific Ocean (EPO) through December 31, 2015 because the 2015 catch limit of 500 metric tons is expected to be reached. This action is necessary to prevent the fishery from exceeding the applicable catch limit established by the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) in Resolution C-13-01, which governs tuna conservation in the EPO from 2014-2016.

    DATES:

    The rule is effective 12 a.m. local time August 12, 2015, through 11:59 p.m. local time December 31, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Taylor Debevec, NMFS West Coast Region, 562-980-4066.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The United States is a member of the IATTC, which was established under the Convention for the Establishment of an Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission signed in 1949 (Convention). The Convention provides an international agreement to ensure the effective international conservation and management of highly migratory species of fish in the IATTC Convention Area. The IATTC Convention Area, as amended by the Antigua Convention, includes the waters of the EPO bounded by the coast of the Americas, the 50° N. and 50° S. parallels, and the 150° W. meridian.

    Pelagic longline fishing in the EPO is managed, in part, under the Tuna Conventions Act of 1950 (Act), 16 U.S.C. 951-962. Under the Act, NMFS must publish regulations to carry out recommendations of the IATTC that have been approved by the Department of State (DOS). Regulations governing fishing by U.S. vessels in accordance with the Act appear at 50 CFR part 300, subpart C. These regulations implement IATTC recommendations for the conservation and management of highly migratory fish resources in the EPO.

    In 2013, the IATTC adopted Resolution C-13-01, which establishes an annual catch limit of bigeye tuna for longline vessels over 24 meters. For calendar years 2014, 2015, and 2016, the catch of bigeye tuna by longline gear in the IATTC Convention Area by fishing vessels of the United States that are over 24 meters in overall length is limited to 500 metric tons per year. With the approval of the DOS, NMFS implemented this catch limit by notice-and-comment rulemaking under the Act (79 FR 19487, April 9, 2014, and codified at 50 CFR 300.25).

    NMFS, through monitoring the retained catches of bigeye tuna using logbook data submitted by vessel captains and other available information from the longline fisheries in the IATTC Convention Area, has determined that the 2015 catch limit is expected to be reached by August 12, 2015. In accordance with 50 CFR 300.25(b), this Federal Register notice announces that the U.S. longline fishery for bigeye tuna in the IATTC Convention Area will be closed for vessels over 24 meters in overall length starting on August 12, 2015, through the end of the 2015 calendar year. The 2016 fishing year is scheduled to open on January 1, 2016. The bigeye tuna catch limit for longline vessels over 24 meters in overall length will again be 500 metric tons for 2016.

    During the closure, a U.S. fishing vessel over 24 meters in overall length may not be used to retain on board, transship, or land bigeye tuna captured by longline gear in the IATTC Convention Area, except as follows:

    • Any bigeye tuna already on board a fishing vessel on August 12, 2015, may be retained on board, transshipped, and/or landed, to the extent authorized by applicable laws and regulations, provided all bigeye tuna are landed within 14 days after the effective date of this rule, that is, no later than August 26, 2015.

    • In the case of a vessel that has declared to NMFS that the current trip type is shallow-set longlining, the 14-day limit to land all bigeye in the previous paragraph is waived. However, the prohibition on any additional retention of bigeye tuna still applies as of August 12, 2015.

    Other prohibitions during the closure include the following:

    • Bigeye tuna caught by a United States vessel over 24 meters in overall length with longline gear in the IATTC Convention Area may not be transshipped to a fishing vessel unless that fishing vessel is operated in compliance with a valid permit issued under 50 CFR 660.707 or 665.801.1

    1 In 50 CFR 300.25(b)(4)(ii), the reference to § 665.21 is outdated. The former 50 CFR 665.21 has been recodified to § 665.801.

    • A fishing vessel of the United States over 24 meters in overall length, that is not on a declared shallow-set longline trip, may not be used to fish in the Pacific Ocean using longline gear both inside and outside the IATTC Convention Area during the same fishing trip, with the exception of a fishing trip that was already in progress when the prohibitions were put into effect.

    • If a vessel over 24 meters in overall length, that is not on a declared shallow-set longline trip, is used to fish in the Pacific Ocean using longline gear outside the IATTC Convention Area, and the vessel enters the IATTC Convention Area at any time during the same fishing trip, the longline gear on the fishing vessel must be stowed in a manner so as not to be readily available for fishing. Specifically, the hooks, branch lines, and floats must be stowed and not available for immediate use, and any power-operated mainline hauler on deck must be covered in such a manner that it is not readily available for use.

    Classification

    NMFS has determined there is good cause to waive prior notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B). This action is based on the best available information and is necessary for the conservation and management of bigeye tuna. Compliance with the notice and comment requirement would be impracticable and contrary to the public interest because NMFS would be unable to ensure that the 2015 bigeye tuna catch limit applicable to longline vessels over 24 meters is not exceeded. The annual catch limit is an important mechanism to ensure that the United States complies with its international obligations in preventing overfishing and managing the fishery at optimum yield. Moreover, NMFS previously solicited, and considered, public comments on the rule that established the catch limit (79 FR 19487, April 9, 2014), including a provision for issuing a notice to close the fishery, if necessary, to prevent exceeding the catch limit. For the same reasons, NMFS has also determined there is good cause to waive the requirement for a 30-day delay in effectiveness under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3).

    This action is required by 50 CFR 300.25(b) and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 951 et seq.

    Dated: July 31, 2015. Jennifer M. Wallace, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19230 Filed 7-31-15; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 635 [Docket No. 120328229-4949-02] RIN 0648-XE079 Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Atlantic Bluefin Tuna Fisheries AGENCY:

    National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Temporary rule; inseason quota transfer.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS is transferring 40 metric tons (mt) of Atlantic bluefin tuna (BFT) quota from the Reserve category to the Harpoon category. With this transfer, the adjusted Harpoon category quota for the 2015 fishing season is 73.4 mt. The 2015 Harpoon category fishery is open until November 15, 2015, or until the Harpoon category quota is reached, whichever comes first. The action is based on consideration of the regulatory determination criteria regarding inseason adjustments, and applies to Atlantic tunas Harpoon category (commercial) permitted vessels.

    DATES:

    Effective July 31, 2015, through November 15, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Sarah McLaughlin or Brad McHale, 978-281-9260.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Regulations implemented under the authority of the Atlantic Tunas Convention Act (ATCA; 16 U.S.C. 971 et seq.) and the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act; 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.) governing the harvest of BFT by persons and vessels subject to U.S. jurisdiction are found at 50 CFR part 635. Section 635.27 subdivides the U.S. BFT quota recommended by the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) among the various domestic fishing categories, per the allocations established in the 2006 Consolidated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan (2006 Consolidated HMS FMP) (71 FR 58058, October 2, 2006), as amended by Amendment 7 to the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP (Amendment 7) (79 FR 71510, December 2, 2014), and in accordance with implementing regulations.

    The currently codified baseline U.S. quota is 923.7 mt (not including the 25 mt ICCAT allocated to the United States to account for bycatch of BFT in pelagic longline fisheries in the Northeast Distant Gear Restricted Area). Among other things, Amendment 7 revised the allocations to all quota categories, effective January 1, 2015, including base quotas of 33.4 mt for the Harpoon category and 21.4 mt for the Reserve category. See § 635.27(a). To date, NMFS has published two inseason quota transfers that have adjusted the available 2015 Reserve category quota, which currently is 74.8 mt (80 FR 7547, February 22, 2015 and 80 FR 45098, July 29, 2015).

    The 2015 Harpoon category fishery opened June 1 and is open through November 15, 2015, or until the Harpoon category quota is reached, whichever comes first.

    Inseason Transfer to the Harpoon Category

    Under § 635.27(a)(7), NMFS has the authority to allocate any portion of the Reserve category to any other category, other than the Angling category school BFT subquota (for which there is a separate reserve), after considering determination criteria provided under § 635.27(a)(8), which are: The usefulness of information obtained from catches in the particular category for biological sampling and monitoring of the status of the stock; the catches of the particular category quota to date and the likelihood of closure of that segment of the fishery if no adjustment is made; the projected ability of the vessels fishing under the particular category quota to harvest the additional amount of BFT before the end of the fishing year; the estimated amounts by which quotas for other gear categories of the fishery might be exceeded; effects of the adjustment on BFT rebuilding and overfishing; effects of the adjustment on accomplishing the objectives of the fishery management plan; variations in seasonal distribution, abundance, or migration patterns of BFT; effects of catch rates in one area precluding vessels in another area from having a reasonable opportunity to harvest a portion of the category's quota; review of dealer reports, daily landing trends, and the availability of the BFT on the fishing grounds; optimizing fishing opportunity; accounting for dead discards, facilitating quota monitoring, supporting other fishing monitoring programs through quota allocations and/or generation of revenue; and support of research through quota allocations and/or generation of revenue.

    NMFS has considered the determination criteria regarding inseason adjustments and their applicability to the Harpoon category fishery. These considerations include, but are not limited to, the following: Biological samples collected from BFT landed by Harpoon category fishermen and provided by BFT dealers continue to provide NMFS with valuable parts and data for ongoing scientific studies of BFT age and growth, migration, and reproductive status. Continued BFT landings would support the collection of a broad range of data for these studies and for stock monitoring purposes. As of July 28, 2015, the Harpoon category has landed 33.1 mt. Without a quota transfer at this time, Harpoon category participants would have to stop BFT fishing activities with very short notice (i.e., 3 days after the date of filing of a closure notice with the Office of the Federal Register), while commercial-sized BFT remain available in the areas Harpoon category permitted vessels operate. NMFS anticipates that the Harpoon category could harvest the transferred 40 mt prior to the end of the Harpoon category season, subject to weather conditions and BFT availability.

    As this action would be taken consistent with the quotas previously established and analyzed in Amendment 7 (79 FR 71510, December 2, 2014), and consistent with objectives of the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP, it is not expected to negatively impact stock health. A principal consideration is the objective of providing opportunities to harvest the full 2015 U.S. BFT quota without exceeding it based upon the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP goal: “Consistent with other objectives of this FMP, to manage Atlantic HMS fisheries for continuing optimum yield so as to provide the greatest overall benefit to the Nation, particularly with respect to food production, providing recreational opportunities, preserving traditional fisheries, and taking into account the protection of marine ecosystems.”

    Based on all of these considerations, as well as the available quota, NMFS has determined that 40 mt of the available 74.8 mt of Reserve category quota should be transferred to the Harpoon category. The transfer would provide a reasonable opportunity to harvest the U.S. quota of BFT, without exceeding it, while maintaining an equitable distribution of fishing opportunities; help achieve optimum yield in the BFT fishery; allow the collection of a broad range of data for stock monitoring purposes; and be consistent with the objectives of the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP and its amendments. Therefore, NMFS adjusts the Harpoon category quota to 73.4 mt for the 2015 Harpoon category fishing season (i.e., through November 15, 2015, or until the Harpoon category quota is reached, whichever comes first). NMFS has considered the fact that it has published a proposed BFT quota rule that would implement and give domestic effect to the 2014 ICCAT recommendation on western Atlantic BFT management, which increased the U.S. BFT quota for 2015 and 2016 by 14 percent from the 2014 level (80 FR 33467, June 12, 2015). The domestic subquotas proposed in that action would result from application of the allocation process established in Amendment 7 to the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP to the increased U.S. quota, and would include an increase in the Harpoon category quota from the currently codified 33.4 mt to 38.6 mt. Although the proposed rule would increase the baseline Harpoon category quota by 5.2 mt, NMFS is transferring 40 mt at this time regardless of the proposed quota increase.

    Monitoring and Reporting

    NMFS will continue to monitor the BFT fishery closely through the mandatory dealer landing reports, which NMFS requires to be submitted within 24 hours of a dealer receiving BFT. General, HMS Charter/Headboat, Harpoon, and Angling category vessel owners are required to report the catch of all BFT retained or discarded dead, within 24 hours of the landing(s) or end of each trip, by accessing hmspermits.noaa.gov. Depending on the level of fishing effort and catch rates of BFT, NMFS may determine that additional adjustment or closure is necessary to ensure available quota is not exceeded or to enhance scientific data collection from, and fishing opportunities in, all geographic areas. If needed, subsequent Harpoon category adjustments will be published in the Federal Register. In addition, fishermen may call the Atlantic Tunas Information Line at (978) 281-9260, or access hmspermits.noaa.gov, for updates on quota monitoring and inseason adjustments.

    Classification

    The Assistant Administrator for NMFS (AA) finds that it is impracticable and contrary to the public interest to provide prior notice of, and an opportunity for public comment on, this action for the following reasons.

    The regulations implementing the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP, as amended, provide for inseason adjustments to respond to the unpredictable nature of BFT availability on the fishing grounds, the migratory nature of this species, and the regional variations in the BFT fishery.

    Affording prior notice and opportunity for public comment to implement the quota transfer for the remainder of 2015 is impracticable and contrary to the public interest as such a delay would likely result in closure of the Harpoon fishery when the base quota is met and the need to re-open the fishery, with attendant administrative costs and costs to the fishery. The delay would preclude the fishery from harvesting BFT that are available on the fishing grounds and that might otherwise become unavailable during a delay. Therefore, the AA finds good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) to waive prior notice and the opportunity for public comment. For all of the above reasons, there is good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(d) to waive the 30-day delay in effectiveness.

    This action is being taken under 50 CFR 635.27(a)(7) and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 971 et seq. and 1801 et seq.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19156 Filed 7-31-15; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 648 [Docket No. 141125999-5362-02] RIN 0648-XE084 Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery; Closure of the Mid-Atlantic Access Area to General Category Individual Fishing Quota Scallop Vessels AGENCY:

    National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Temporary rule; closure.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS announces that the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area will close to Limited Access General Category Individual Fishing Quota scallop vessels for the remainder of the 2015 fishing year. No vessel issued a Limited Access General Category Individual Fishing Quota permit may fish for, possess, or land scallops from the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area. Regulations require this action once it is projected that 100 percent of trips allocated to the Limited Access General Category Individual Fishing Quota scallop vessels for the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area will be taken.

    DATES:

    Effective 0001 hr local time, August 4, 2015, through February 29, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Shannah Jaburek, Fishery Management Specialist, (978) 282-8456.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The reader can find regulations governing fishing activity in the Sea Scallop Access Areas in 50 CFR648.59 and 648.60, which authorize vessels issued a valid Limited Access General Category (LAGC) Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) scallop permit to fish in the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area under specific conditions, including a total of 2,065 trips that may be taken by LAGC IFQ vessels during the 2015 fishing year. Section 648.60(g)(3)(iii) requires the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area to be closed to LAGC IFQ permitted vessels for the remainder of the fishing year once the NMFS Greater Atlantic Regional Administrator determines that the allowed number of trips for fishing year 2015 are projected to be taken.

    Based on trip declarations by LAGC IFQ scallop vessels fishing in the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area, and analysis of fishing effort, we project that 2,065 trips will be taken as of August 4, 2015. Therefore, in accordance with § 648.60(g)(3)(iii), the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area is closed to all LAGC IFQ scallop vessels as of August 4, 2015. No vessel issued an LAGC IFQ permit may fish for, possess, or land scallops in or from the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area after 0001 local time, August 4, 2015. Any LAGC IFQ vessel that has declared into the Mid-Atlantic Access Area scallop fishery, complied with all trip notification and observer requirements, and crossed the VMS demarcation line on the way to the area before 0001, August 4, 2015, may complete its trip. This closure is in effect for the remainder of the 2015 scallop fishing year.

    Classification

    This action is required by 50 CFR part 648 and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866.

    NMFS finds good cause pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) to waive prior notice and the opportunity for public comment because it would be contrary to the public interest and impracticable. The Mid-Atlantic Access Area opened for the 2015 fishing year on May 1, 2015. The regulations at § 648.60(g)(3)(iii) require this closure to ensure that LAGC IFQ scallop vessels do not take more than their allocated number of trips in the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area. The projections of the date on which the LAGC IFQ fleet will have taken all of its allocated trips in an Access Area become apparent only as trips into the area occur on a real-time basis and as activity trends begin to appear. As a result, an accurate projection only can be made very close in time to when the fleet has taken all of its trips. In addition, proposing a closure would likely increase activity, triggering an earlier closure than predicted. To allow LAGC IFQ scallop vessels to continue to take trips in the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area during the period necessary to publish and receive comments on a proposed rule would likely result in vessels taking much more than the allowed number of trips in the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area. Excessive trips and harvest from the Mid-Atlantic Scallop Access Area would result in excessive fishing effort in the area, where effort controls are critical, thereby undermining conservation objectives of the Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery Management Plan and requiring more restrictive future management measures. Also, the public had prior notice and full opportunity to comment on this closure process when we put these provisions in place. NMFS further finds, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3), good cause to waive the 30-day delayed effectiveness period for the reasons stated above.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19150 Filed 7-31-15; 11:15 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 660 [Docket No. 150112035-5658-02] RIN 0648-BE80 Fisheries off West Coast States; Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan; Revision to Prohibited Species Regulations AGENCY:

    National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS is issuing regulations under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA) to revise the prohibited species policy for highly migratory species off the U.S. West Coast. This action is necessary to accurately reflect the intent of the Fishery Management Plan for U.S. West Coast Fisheries for Highly Migratory Species.

    DATES:

    The final rule is effective August 5, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Copies of the Regulatory Impact Review (RIR) and other supporting documents are available via the Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov, docket NOAA-NMFS-2015-0006, or contact the Regional Administrator, William W. Stelle, Jr., NMFS West Coast Region, 7600 Sand Point Way NE., Bldg 1, Seattle, WA 98115-0070, or [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Taylor Debevec, NMFS, 562-980-4066.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    On June 4, 2015, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) published a proposed rule in the Federal Register (80 FR 31884) to resolve a discrepancy between the Fishery Management Plan (FMP) for U.S. West Coast Fisheries for Highly Migratory Species (HMS) 1 and the regulations that implemented the FMP.2 This action was identified at the Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) meeting in November 2014 and was discussed with broad support. The public comment period was open until July 19, 2015. No changes to the proposed rule were made in response to comments. This final rule is implemented under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA), 16 U.S.C. 1801, et seq., by regulations at 50 CFR part 660.

    1http://www.pcouncil.org/wp-content/uploads/HMS-FMP-Jul11.pdf.

    2 Title 50, part 660, subpart K.

    This final rule codifies two exceptions to the general prohibition on retention of prohibited species from the HMS FMP that were not included in the implementing regulations for the FMP. Species for which retention is, and will continue to be, prohibited are identified in the definition section, § 660.702, under “Prohibited species.” This revision to the definition of “prohibited species” makes the language at § 660.711(a) redundant and, therefore, it is deleted. Finally, the language at § 660.705(e) clearly states the prohibition of targeting these species while fishing for HMS, as well as explicitly identifies all of the exceptions to the retention prohibition. These revisions make the regulations for prohibited species consistent with the policy and analysis of the HMS FMP.

    The proposed rule contains additional background information, including information on the history of the HMS FMP, the discrepancy between it and the regulations, and the need to rectify this discrepancy.

    Public Comments and Responses

    NMFS received one written public comment. The commenter expressed several concerns regarding more than one aspect of the rule, some being very similar; therefore, NMFS is responding to the common themes/topics. The responses are summarized below. Specific issues that were beyond the scope of this rulemaking are not addressed here.

    Issue 1: The current HMS regulations already convey the prohibited species policy of the HMS FMP.

    Response: Three exceptions to the prohibited species policy were outlined in the FMP, but only one is in the regulations. Since two of the exceptions are missing, the regulations do not fully convey the intent of the FMP.

    Issue 2: The proposed revisions to the regulations would delete important aspects of the policy and do not make sense within the existing flow and outline of the subpart.

    Response: Although parts of the regulations (not the policy) are deleted, they are administrative in nature. The revisions remove nothing of substance, but rather reorganize the language for clarity and add the missing exceptions.

    Issue 3: The exceptions proposed for addition to the regulations have not been analyzed and are not consistent with the management plan.

    Response: These exceptions, which were written in the HMS FMP, were analyzed in the 2003 Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the FMP. The EIS found that the prohibited species policy, including the exceptions, would ensure that neither the rare sharks nor the strict management of halibut and salmon are compromised by HMS fisheries.

    Issue 4: This action makes catching prohibited species legal.

    Response: The edited regulations continue to generally prohibit the retention of prohibited species, but add two limited circumstances in which they are allowed to be retained, as set forth in the FMP.

    Classification

    The Administrator, West Coast Region, NMFS, determined that this regulatory amendment under the HMS FMP is necessary for the conservation and management of the fishery, and that it is consistent with the MSA and other applicable laws.

    Administrative Procedure Act (APA)

    The Assistant Administrator finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in the effective date of this action under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3). This action revises the definition of prohibited species and codifies two exceptions to the general prohibition on retention of prohibited species. This action would benefit regulated entities by ensuring clarity in the definition of prohibited species, and consistency of the exceptions to the general prohibition on retention of prohibited species with the policy outlined in the HMS FMP, which allows for the retention of salmon and Pacific halibut, and basking, megamouth, and great white sharks under certain limited conditions.

    Executive Order 12866

    This final rule has been determined to be not significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866.

    Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Chief Counsel for Regulation of the Department of Commerce certified to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration during the proposed rule stage that this action would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The factual basis for the certification was published in the proposed rule and is not being repeated here. No comments were received regarding the certification. As a result, a final regulatory flexibility analysis is not required and one was not prepared.

    List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 660

    Fisheries, Fishing, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Samuel D. Rauch III, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine Fisheries Service.

    For the reasons set out in the preamble, 50 CFR part 660 is amended as follows:

    PART 660—FISHERIES OFF WEST COAST STATES 1. The authority citation for part 660 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq., 16 U.S.C. 773 et seq., and 16 U.S.C. 7001 et seq.

    2. In § 660.702, revise the definition for “Prohibited species” to read as follows:
    § 660.702 Definitions.

    Prohibited species means any highly migratory species for which quotas or catch limits under the FMP have been achieved and the fishery closed; salmon; great white shark; basking shark; megamouth shark; and Pacific halibut.

    3. In § 660.705, revise paragraph (e) to read as follows:
    § 660.705 Prohibitions.

    (e) When fishing for HMS, fail to return a prohibited species to the sea immediately with a minimum of injury, except under the following circumstances:

    (1) Any prohibited species may be retained for examination by an authorized observer or to return tagged fish as specified by the tagging agency.

    (2) Salmon may be retained if harvested in accordance with subpart H of this part, and other applicable law.

    (3) Great white sharks, basking sharks, and megamouth sharks may be retained if incidentally caught and subsequently sold or donated to a recognized scientific or educational organization for research or display purposes.

    (4) Pacific halibut may be retained if harvested in accordance with part 300, subpart E of this Title, and other applicable law.

    § 660.711 [Amended]
    4. In § 660.711, remove paragraph (a) and redesignate paragraphs (b) through (d) as (a) through (c).
    [FR Doc. 2015-19157 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 679 [Docket No. 141021887-5172-02] RIN 0648-XE072 Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Squids in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area AGENCY:

    National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Temporary rule; closure.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS is prohibiting retention of squids in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area (BSAI). This action is necessary because the 2015 initial total allowable catch of squids in the BSAI has been reached.

    DATES:

    Effective 1200 hrs, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), July 30, 2015, through 2400 hrs, A.l.t., December 31, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Obren Davis, 907-586-7228.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    NMFS manages the groundfish fishery in the BSAI exclusive economic zone according to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands management area (FMP) prepared by the North Pacific Fishery Management Council under authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. Regulations governing fishing by U.S. vessels in accordance with the FMP appear at subpart H of 50 CFR part 600 and 50 CFR part 679.

    The 2015 initial total allowable catch (TAC) for squids in the BSAI is 340 metric tons as established by the final 2015 and 2016 harvest specifications for groundfish of the BSAI (80 FR 11919, March 5, 2015).

    In accordance with § 679.20(d)(2), the Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS (Regional Administrator), has determined that the 2015 initial TAC of squids in the BSAI has been reached. Therefore, NMFS is requiring that squids caught in the BSAI be treated as prohibited species in accordance with § 679.21(b).

    Classification

    This action responds to the best available information recently obtained from the fishery. The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, NOAA (AA), finds good cause to waive the requirement to provide prior notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to the authority set forth at 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) as such requirement is impracticable and contrary to the public interest. This requirement is impracticable and contrary to the public interest as it would prevent NMFS from responding to the most recent fisheries data in a timely fashion and would delay prohibiting the retention of squids in the BSAI. NMFS was unable to publish a notice providing time for public comment because the most recent, relevant data only became available as of July 29, 2015.

    The AA also finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in the effective date of this action under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3). This finding is based upon the reasons provided above for waiver of prior notice and opportunity for public comment.

    This action is required by § 679.20 and § 679.21 and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19094 Filed 7-30-15; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    80 150 Wednesday, August 5, 2015 Proposed Rules DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY 10 CFR Part 430 [Docket Number EERE-2015-BT-STD-0016] Appliance Standards and Rulemaking Federal Advisory Committee: Notice of Intent To Establish a Working Group for Certain Equipment Classes of Refrigeration Systems of Walk-in Coolers and Freezers To Negotiate a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NOPR) for Energy Conservation Standards AGENCY:

    Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, U.S. Department of Energy.

    ACTION:

    Notice of intent and announcement of public meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The U.S. Department of Energy (“DOE” or, in context, “the Department”) is giving notice of a public meeting and that DOE intends to establish a negotiated rulemaking working group under the Appliance Standards and Rulemaking Federal Advisory Committee (“ASRAC”) in accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act (“FACA”) and the Negotiated Rulemaking Act (“NRA”) to negotiate proposed amended energy conservation standards for six equipment classes (i.e., the two equipment classes of multiplex condensing refrigeration systems operating at medium and low temperatures and the four equipment classes of dedicated condensing refrigeration systems operating at low temperatures) of walk-in cooler and freezer refrigeration systems. The purpose of the working group will be to discuss and, if possible, reach consensus on a proposed rule regarding amended energy conservation standards for only those aforementioned equipment classes of refrigeration systems of walk-in coolers and freezers, as authorized by the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) of 1975, as amended. The working group will consist of representatives of parties having a defined stake in the outcome of the proposed standards, and will consult as appropriate with a range of experts on technical issues. Per the ASRAC Charter, the working group is expected to make a concerted effort to negotiate a final term sheet by December 27, 2015.

    DATES:

    DOE will host the first Working Group meeting, which is open to the public, and will be broadcast via webinar on Thursday, August 27, 2015 from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. in Washington, DC.

    Written comments and applications (i.e., cover letter and resume) to be appointed as members of the working group are welcome and should be submitted by August 12, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    U.S. Department of Energy, Forrestal Building, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585, Room 8E-089. Individuals will also have the opportunity to participate by webinar. To register for the webinar and receive call-in information, please register http://www1.eere.energy.gov/buildings/appliance_standards/rulemaking.aspx/ruleid/30.

    Interested person may submit comments and an application for membership (including a cover letter and resume), identified by docket number EERE-2015-BT-STD-0016, via any of the following methods:

    1. Federal eRulemaking Portal: www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

    2. Email: [email protected] Include docket number EERE-2015-BT-STD-0016 in the subject line of the message.

    3. Mail: Ms. Brenda Edwards, U.S. Department of Energy, Building Technologies Office, Mailstop EE-5B, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585-0121. If possible, please submit all items on a compact disc (CD), in which case it is not necessary to include printed copies.

    4. Hand Delivery/Courier: Ms. Brenda Edwards, U.S. Department of Energy, Building Technologies Program, 950 L'Enfant Plaza SW., Suite 600, Washington, DC 20024. Telephone: (202) 586-2945. If possible, please submit all items on a CD, in which case it is not necessary to include printed copies.

    No telefacsimilies (faxes) will be accepted.

    Docket: The docket is available for review at http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=EERE-2015-BT-STD-0016, including Federal Register notices, public meeting attendee lists and transcripts, comments, and other supporting documents/materials. All documents in the docket are listed in the http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=EERE-2015-BT-STD-0016 index. However, not all documents listed in the index may be publicly available, such as information that is exempt from public disclosure.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    John Cymbalsky, U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Building Technologies (EE-2J), 950 L'Enfant Plaza SW., Washington, DC 20024. Phone: 202-287-1692. Email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Authority II. Background III. Proposed Negotiating Procedures IV. Comments Requested V. Public Participation VI. Approval of the Office of the Secretary I. Authority

    DOE is announcing its intent to negotiate proposed energy conservation standards for the two walk-in cooler and freezer equipment classes applicable to multiplex condensing refrigeration systems operating at medium and low temperatures and the four walk-in cooler and freezer equipment classes applicable to dedicated condensing refrigeration systems operating at low temperatures, under the authority of sections 563 and 564 of the NRA (5 U.S.C. 561-570, Pub. L. 104-320). The regulation of walk-in coolers and freezers standards that DOE is proposing to develop under a negotiated rulemaking will be developed under the authority of EPCA, as amended, 42 U.S.C. 6311(1) and 42 U.S.C. 6291 et seq.

    II. Background

    As required by the NRA, DOE is giving notice that it is establishing a working group under ASRAC to discuss proposed energy conservation standards for the two walk-in cooler and freezer equipment classes applicable to multiplex condensing refrigeration systems operating at medium and low temperatures and the four walk-in cooler and freezer equipment classes applicable to dedicated condensing refrigeration systems operating at low temperatures.

    A. Negotiated Rulemaking

    Consistent with the parties' settlement agreement in Lennox v. DOE, No. 14-60535 (5th Cir.), DOE is supporting the use of the negotiated rulemaking process to discuss and develop proposed energy conservation standards for the two walk-in cooler and freezer equipment classes applicable to multiplex condensing refrigeration systems operating at medium and low temperatures and the four walk-in cooler and freezer equipment classes applicable to dedicated condensing refrigeration systems operating at low temperatures. The primary reason for using the negotiated rulemaking process for this product is that stakeholders strongly support a consensual rulemaking effort. DOE believes such a regulatory negotiation process will be less adversarial and better suited to resolving complex technical issues. An important virtue of negotiated rulemaking is that it allows expert dialog that is much better than traditional techniques at getting the facts and issues right and will result in a proposed rule that will effectively reflect Congressional intent.

    A regulatory negotiation will enable DOE to engage in direct and sustained dialog with informed, interested, and affected parties when drafting the regulation, rather than obtaining input during a public comment period after developing and publishing a proposed rule. A rule drafted by negotiation with informed and affected parties is expected to be potentially more pragmatic and more easily implemented than a rule arising from the traditional process. Such rulemaking improvement is likely to provide the public with the full benefits of the rule while minimizing the potential negative impact of a proposed regulation conceived or drafted without the full prior input of outside knowledgeable parties. Because a negotiating working group includes representatives from the major stakeholder groups affected by or interested in the rule, the number of public comments on the proposed rule may be decreased. DOE anticipates that there will be a need for fewer substantive changes to a proposed rule developed under a regulatory negotiation process prior to the publication of a final rule.

    B. The Concept of Negotiated Rulemaking

    Usually, DOE develops a proposed rulemaking using Department staff and consultant resources. Congress noted in the NRA, however, that regulatory development may “discourage the affected parties from meeting and communicating with each other, and may cause parties with different interests to assume conflicting and antagonistic positions . . . .” 5 U.S.C. 561(2)(2). Congress also stated that “adversarial rulemaking deprives the affected parties and the public of the benefits of face-to-face negotiations and cooperation in developing and reaching agreement on a rule. It also deprives them of the benefits of shared information, knowledge, expertise, and technical abilities possessed by the affected parties.” 5 U.S.C. 561(2)(3).

    Using negotiated rulemaking to develop a proposed rule differs fundamentally from the Department-centered process. In negotiated rulemaking, a proposed rule is developed by an advisory committee or working group, chartered under FACA, 5 U.S.C. App. 2, composed of members chosen to represent the various interests that will be significantly affected by the rule. The goal of the advisory committee or working group is to reach consensus on the treatment of the major issues involved with the rule. The process starts with the Department's careful identification of all interests potentially affected by the rulemaking under consideration. To help with this identification, the Department publishes a notice of intent such as this one in the Federal Register, identifying a preliminary list of interested parties and requesting public comment on that list. Following receipt of comments, the Department establishes an advisory committee or working group representing the full range of stakeholders to negotiate a consensus on the terms of a proposed rule. Representation on the advisory committee or working group may be direct; that is, each member may represent a specific interest, or may be indirect, such as through trade associations and/or similarly-situated parties with common interests. The Department is a member of the advisory committee or working group and represents the Federal government's interests. The advisory committee or working group chair is assisted by a neutral mediator who facilitates the negotiation process. The role of the mediator, also called a facilitator, is to apply proven consensus-building techniques to the advisory committee or working group process.

    After an advisory committee or working group reaches consensus on the provisions of a proposed rule, the Department, consistent with its legal obligations, uses such consensus as the basis of its proposed rule, which then is published in the Federal Register. This publication provides the required public notice and provides for a public comment period. Other participants and other interested parties retain their rights to comment, participate in an informal hearing (if requested), and request judicial review. DOE anticipates, however, that the pre-proposal consensus agreed upon by the advisory committee or working group will narrow any issues in the subsequent rulemaking.

    C. Proposed Rulemaking for Energy Conservation Standards Regarding Certain Equipment Classes of Walk-in Coolers and Freezers

    The NRA enables DOE to establish an advisory committee or working group if it is determined that the use of the negotiated rulemaking process is in the public interest. DOE intends to develop Federal regulations that build on the depth of experience accrued in both the public and private sectors in implementing standards and programs.

    DOE is supporting the use of the regulatory negotiation process in order to provide for obtaining a diverse array of in-depth input, as well as an opportunity for increased collaborative discussion from both private-sector stakeholders and government officials who are familiar with the energy efficiency of walk-in coolers and freezers.

    D. Department Commitment

    In initiating this regulatory negotiation process to develop amendments to the energy conservation standards for the two walk-in cooler and freezer equipment classes applicable to multiplex condensing refrigeration systems operating at medium and low temperatures and the four walk-in cooler and freezer equipment classes applicable to dedicated condensing refrigeration systems operating at low temperatures, DOE is making a commitment to provide adequate resources to facilitate timely and successful completion of the process. This commitment includes making the process a priority activity for all representatives, components, officials, and personnel of the Department who need to be involved in the rulemaking, from the time of initiation until such time as a final rule is issued or the process is expressly terminated. DOE will provide administrative support for the process and will take steps to ensure that the advisory committee or working group has the dedicated resources it requires to complete its work in a timely fashion. Specifically, DOE will make available the following support services: Properly equipped space adequate for public meetings and caucuses; logistical support; word processing and distribution of background information; the service of a facilitator; and such additional research and other technical assistance as may be necessary.

    To the maximum extent possible consistent with the legal obligations of the Department, DOE will use the consensus of the advisory committee or working group as the basis for the rule the Department proposes for public notice and comment.

    E. Negotiating Consensus

    As discussed above, the negotiated rulemaking process differs fundamentally from the usual process for developing a proposed rule. Negotiation enables interested and affected parties to discuss various approaches to issues rather than asking them only to respond to a proposal developed by the Department. The negotiation process involves a mutual education of the various parties on the practical concerns about the impact of standards. Each advisory committee or working group member participates in resolving the interests and concerns of other members, rather than leaving it up to DOE to evaluate and incorporate different points of view.

    A key principle of negotiated rulemaking is that agreement is by consensus of all the interests. Thus, no one interest or group of interests is able to control the process. The NRA defines consensus as the unanimous concurrence among interests represented on a negotiated rulemaking committee or working group, unless the committee or working group itself unanimously agrees to use a different definition. 5 U.S.C. 562. In addition, experience has demonstrated that using a trained mediator to facilitate this process will assist all parties, including DOE, in identifying their real interests in the rule, and thus will enable parties to focus on and resolve the important issues.

    III. Proposed Negotiating Procedures A. Key Issues for Negotiation

    The following issues and concerns will underlie the work of the Negotiated Rulemaking Committee for walk-in coolers and freezers and be limited to the items specified below:

    • Proposed energy conservation standards for the two walk-in cooler and freezer equipment classes applicable to multiplex condensing refrigeration systems operating at medium and low temperatures and the four walk-in cooler and freezer equipment classes applicable to dedicated condensing refrigeration systems operating at low temperatures. See 10 CFR 431.306(e).; and

    • As part of the analysis considered underlying the proposed energy conservation standards mentioned, DOE will consider any comments (including any accompanying data) regarding the potential impacts of these six proposed standards on installers.

    To examine the underlying issues outlined above, all parties in the negotiation will need DOE to provide data and an analytic framework complete and accurate enough to support their deliberations. DOE's analyses must be adequate to inform a prospective negotiation—for example, DOE published the technological and economic spreadsheets associated with the June 3, 2014 final rule along with a technical support document detailing those analyses. See http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=EERE-2008-BT-STD-0015-0131). DOE expects to start the Working Group's discussions with a list of analytical issues that should be considered for revision based on the June 2014 analysis for the six equipment classes of refrigeration walk-in cooler and freezer refrigeration systems subject to the negotiations and encourages interested parties to submit any new data to be considered to the Working Group.

    B. Formation of Working Group

    A working group will be formed and operated in full compliance with the requirements of FACA and in a manner consistent with the requirements of the NRA. DOE has determined that the working group shall not exceed 25 members. The Department believes that more than 25 members would make it difficult to conduct effective negotiations. DOE is aware that there are many more potential participants than there are membership slots on the working group. The Department does not believe, nor does the NRA contemplate, that each potentially affected group must participate directly in the negotiations; nevertheless, each affected interest can be adequately represented. To have a successful negotiation, it is important for interested parties to identify and form coalitions that adequately represent significantly affected interests. To provide adequate representation, those coalitions must agree to support, both financially and technically, a member of the working group whom they choose to represent their interests.

    DOE recognizes that when it considers adding covered products and establishing energy efficiency standards for residential products and commercial equipment, various segments of society may be affected in different ways—in some cases, producing unique “interests” in a proposed rule based on income, gender, or other factors. The Department will pay attention to providing that any unique interests that have been identified, and that may be significantly affected by the proposed rule, are represented.

    FACA also requires that members of the public have the opportunity to attend meetings of the full committee and speak or otherwise address the committee during the public comment period. In addition, any member of the public is permitted to file a written statement with the advisory committee. DOE plans to follow these same procedures in conducting meetings of the working group.

    C. Interests Involved/Working Group Membership

    DOE anticipates that the working group will comprise no more than 25 members who represent affected and interested stakeholder groups, at least one of whom must be a member of the ASRAC. As required by FACA, the Department will conduct the negotiated rulemaking with particular attention to ensuring full and balanced representation of those interests that may be significantly affected by the proposed rule governing standards for the two walk-in cooler and freezer equipment classes applicable to multiplex condensing refrigeration systems operating at medium and low temperatures and the four walk-in cooler and freezer equipment classes applicable to dedicated condensing refrigeration systems operating at low temperatures. Section 562 of the NRA defines the term “interest” as “with respect to an issue or matter, multiple parties which have a similar point of view or which are likely to be affected in a similar manner.” Listed below are parties the Department to date has identified as being “significantly affected” by a proposed rule regarding the energy efficiency of walk-in coolers and freezers.

    • The Department of Energy;

    • Trade Associations representing refrigeration system manufacturers of walk-in coolers and freezers;

    • Manufacturers of refrigeration systems of walk-in coolers and freezers;

    • Manufacturers of walk-in coolers and freezer refrigeration system components and related suppliers;

    • Distributors or contractors selling or installers of refrigeration systems of walk-in coolers and freezers;

    • Utilities;

    • Energy efficiency/environmental advocacy groups; and

    • Commercial customers.

    One purpose of this notice of intent is to determine whether Federal regulations for the two walk-in cooler and freezer equipment classes applicable to multiplex condensing refrigeration systems operating at medium and low temperatures and the four walk-in cooler and freezer equipment classes applicable to dedicated condensing refrigeration systems operating at low temperatures will significantly affect interests that are not listed above. DOE invites comment and suggestions on its initial list of significantly affected interests.

    Members may be individuals or organizations. If the effort is to be fruitful, participants in the working group should be able to fully and adequately represent the viewpoints of their respective interests. This document gives notice of DOE's process to other potential participants and affords them the opportunity to request representation in the negotiations. Those who wish to be appointed as members of the working group, should submit a request to DOE, in accordance with the public participation procedures outlined in the DATES and ADDRESSES sections of this notice of intent. Membership of the working group is likely to involve:

    • Attendance at approximately eight (8), one (1)- to two (2)-day meetings (with the potential for two (2) additional one (1)- or two (2)-day meetings);

    • Travel costs to those meetings; and

    • Preparation time for those meetings.

    Members serving on the working group will not receive compensation for their services. Interested parties who are not selected for membership on the working group may make valuable contributions to this negotiated rulemaking effort in any of the following ways:

    • The person may request to be placed on the working group mailing list and submit written comments as appropriate.

    • The person may attend working group meetings, which are open to the public; caucus with his or her interest's member on the working group; or even address the working group during the public comment portion of the working group meeting.

    • The person could assist the efforts of a workgroup that the working group might establish.

    A working group may establish informal workgroups, which usually are asked to facilitate committee deliberations by assisting with various technical matters (e.g., researching or preparing summaries of the technical literature or comments on specific matters such as economic issues). Workgroups also might assist in estimating costs or drafting regulatory text on issues associated with the analysis of the costs and benefits addressed, or formulating drafts of the various provisions and their justifications as previously developed by the working group. Given their support function, workgroups usually consist of participants who have expertise or particular interest in the technical matter(s) being studied. Because it recognizes the importance of this support work for the working group, DOE will provide appropriate technical expertise for such workgroups.

    D. Good Faith Negotiation

    Every working group member must be willing to negotiate in good faith and have the authority, granted by his or her constituency, to do so. The first step is to ensure that each member has good communications with his or her constituencies. An intra-interest network of communication should be established to bring information from the support organization to the member at the table, and to take information from the table back to the support organization. Second, each organization or coalition, therefore, should designate as its representative a person having the credibility and authority to ensure that needed information is provided and decisions are made in a timely fashion. Negotiated rulemaking can require the appointed members to give a significant sustained for as long as the duration of the negotiated rulemaking. Other qualities of members that can be helpful are negotiating experience and skills, and sufficient technical knowledge to participate in substantive negotiations.

    Certain concepts are central to negotiating in good faith. One is the willingness to bring all issues to the bargaining table in an attempt to reach a consensus, as opposed to keeping key issues in reserve. The second is a willingness to keep the issues at the table and not take them to other forums. Finally, good faith includes a willingness to move away from some of the positions often taken in a more traditional rulemaking process, and instead explore openly with other parties all ideas that may emerge from the working group's discussions.

    E. Facilitator

    The facilitator will act as a neutral in the substantive development of the proposed standard. Rather, the facilitator's role generally includes:

    • Impartially assisting the members of the working group in conducting discussions and negotiations; and

    • Impartially assisting in performing the duties of the Designated Federal Official under FACA.

    F. Department Representative

    The DOE representative will be a full and active participant in the consensus building negotiations. The Department's representative will meet regularly with senior Department officials, briefing them on the negotiations and receiving their suggestions and advice so that he or she can effectively represent the Department's views regarding the issues before the working group. DOE's representative also will ensure that the entire spectrum of governmental interests affected by the standards rulemaking, including the Office of Management and Budget, the Attorney General, and other Departmental offices, are kept informed of the negotiations and encouraged to make their concerns known in a timely fashion.

    G. Working Group and Schedule

    After evaluating the comments submitted in response to this notice of intent and the requests for nominations, DOE will either inform the members of the working group that they have been selected or determine that conducting a negotiated rulemaking is inappropriate.

    Per the ASRAC Charter, the working group is expected to make a concerted effort to negotiate a final term sheet by December 27, 2015.

    DOE will advise working group members of administrative matters related to the functions of the working group before beginning. While the negotiated rulemaking process is underway, DOE is committed to performing much of the same analysis as it would during a normal standards rulemaking process and to providing information and technical support to the working group.

    IV. Comments Requested

    DOE requests comments on which parties should be included in a negotiated rulemaking to develop draft language pertaining to the energy efficiency of walk-in coolers and freezers and suggestions of additional interests and/or stakeholders that should be represented on the working group. All who wish to participate as members of the working group should submit a request for nomination to DOE.

    V. Public Participation

    Members of the public are welcome to observe the business of the meeting and, if time allows, may make oral statements during the specified period for public comment. To attend the meeting and/or to make oral statements regarding any of the items on the agenda, email [email protected] In the email, please indicate your name, organization (if appropriate), citizenship, and contact information. Please note that foreign nationals participating in the public meeting are subject to advance security screening procedures which require advance notice prior to attendance at the public meeting. If a foreign national wishes to participate in the public meeting, please inform DOE as soon as possible by contacting Ms. Regina Washington at (202) 586-1214 or by email: [email protected] so that the necessary procedures can be completed. Anyone attending the meeting will be required to present a government photo identification, such as a passport, driver's license, or government identification. Due to the required security screening upon entry, individuals attending should arrive early to allow for the extra time needed.

    Due to the REAL ID Act implemented by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) recent changes regarding ID requirements for individuals wishing to enter Federal buildings from specific states and U.S. territories. Driver's licenses from the following states or territory will not be accepted for building entry and one of the alternate forms of ID listed below will be required.

    DHS has determined that regular driver's licenses (and ID cards) from the following jurisdictions are not acceptable for entry into DOE facilities: Alaska, Louisiana, New York, American Samoa, Maine, Oklahoma, Arizona, Massachusetts, Washington, and Minnesota.

    Acceptable alternate forms of Photo-ID include: U.S. Passport or Passport Card; an Enhanced Driver's License or Enhanced ID-Card issued by the states of Minnesota, New York or Washington (Enhanced licenses issued by these states are clearly marked Enhanced or Enhanced Driver's License); a military ID or other Federal government issued Photo-ID card.

    VI. Approval of the Office of the Secretary

    The Secretary of Energy has approved publication of today's notice of intent.

    Issued in Washington, DC, on July 31, 2015. Kathleen B. Hogan, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19235 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2015-2270; Airspace Docket No. 12-AWP-11] Proposed Establishment of Class E Airspace, Cottonwood, AZ AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

    SUMMARY:

    This action proposes to establish Class E airspace at Cottonwood Airport, Cottonwood, AZ, to accommodate new Standard Instrument Approach Procedures at the airport. The FAA found establishment of controlled airspace necessary for the safety and management of Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) operations.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before September 21, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Send comments on this proposal to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590; Telephone (202) 366-9826. You must identify FAA Docket No. FAA-2015-2270; Airspace Docket No. 12-AWP-11, at the beginning of your comments. You may also submit comments through the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov. You may review the public docket containing the proposal, any comments received, and any final disposition in person in the Dockets Office between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The Docket Office (Telephone 1-800-647-5527), is on the ground floor of the building at the above address.

    FAA Order 7400.9Y, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, and subsequent amendments can be viewed online at http://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/publications/. The Order is also available for inspection at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, call (202) 741-6030, or go to http://www.archives.gov/federal_register/code_of_federal-regulations/ibr_locations.html.

    FAA Order 7400.9, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, is published yearly and effective on September 15. For further information, you can contact the Airspace Policy and Regulations Group, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20591; Telephone: (202) 267-8783.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Rob Riedl, Federal Aviation Administration, Operations Support Group, Western Service Center, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057; Telephone (425) 203-4534.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Authority for This Rulemaking

    The FAA's authority to issue rules regarding aviation safety is found in Title 49 of the United States Code. Subtitle I, Section 106 describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII, Aviation Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the agency's authority. This rulemaking is promulgated under the authority described in Subtitle VII, Part, A, Subpart I, Section 40103. Under that section, the FAA is charged with prescribing regulations to assign the use of airspace necessary to ensure the safety of aircraft and the efficient use of airspace. This regulation is within the scope of that authority as it would establish controlled airspace at Cottonwood Airport, Cottonwood, AZ.

    Comments Invited

    Interested parties are invited to participate in this proposed rulemaking by submitting such written data, views, or arguments, as they may desire. Comments that provide the factual basis supporting the views and suggestions presented are particularly helpful in developing reasoned regulatory decisions on the proposal. Comments are specifically invited on the overall regulatory, aeronautical, economic, environmental, and energy-related aspects of the proposal. Communications should identify both docket numbers and be submitted in triplicate to the address listed above. Commenters wishing the FAA to acknowledge receipt of their comments on this notice must submit with those comments a self-addressed, stamped postcard on which the following statement is made: “Comments to Docket No. FAA-2015-2270/Airspace Docket No. 12-AWP-11.” The postcard will be date/time stamped and returned to the commenter.

    Availability of NPRMs

    An electronic copy of this document may be downloaded through the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov. Recently published rulemaking documents can also be accessed through the FAA's Web page at http://www.faa.gov/airports_airtraffic/air_traffic/publications/airspace_amendments/.

    You may review the public docket containing the proposal, any comments received, and any final disposition in person in the Dockets Office (see the ADDRESSES section for the address and phone number) between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except federal holidays. An informal docket may also be examined during normal business hours at the Northwest Mountain Regional Office of the Federal Aviation Administration, Air Traffic Organization, Western Service Center, Operations Support Group, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057.

    Persons interested in being placed on a mailing list for future NPRMs should contact the FAA's Office of Rulemaking, (202) 267-9677, for a copy of Advisory Circular No. 11-2A, Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Distribution System, which describes the application procedure.

    Availability and Summary of Documents Proposed for Incorporation by Reference

    This document proposes to amend FAA Order 7400.9Y, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 6, 2014, and effective September 15, 2014. FAA Order 7400.9Y is publicly available as listed in the ADDRESSES section of this proposed rule. FAA Order 7400.9Y lists Class A, B, C, D, and E airspace areas, air traffic service routes, and reporting points.

    The Proposal

    The FAA is proposing an amendment to Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) Part 71 by establishing Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Cottonwood Airport, Cottonwood, AZ. The Class E airspace area would be established within a 4-mile radius of Cottonwood Airport, with a segment extending from the 4-mile radius to 15 miles southeast of the airport. This action is necessary for the safety and management of standard instrument approach procedures for IFR operations at the airport.

    Class E airspace designations are published in paragraph 6005 of FAA Order 7400.9Y, dated August 6, 2014, and effective September 15, 2014, which is incorporated by reference in 14 CFR 71.1. The Class E airspace designations listed in this document will be published subsequently in the Order.

    Regulatory Notices and Analyses

    The FAA has determined this proposed regulation only involves an established body of technical regulations for which frequent and routine amendments are necessary to keep them operationally current. Therefore, this proposed regulation; (1) is not a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866; (2) is not a “significant rule” under DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034; February 26, 1979); and (3) does not warrant preparation of a regulatory evaluation as the anticipated impact is so minimal. Since this is a routine matter that will only affect air traffic procedures and air navigation, it is certified this proposed rule, when promulgated, would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

    Environmental Review

    This proposal will be subject to an environmental analysis in accordance with FAA Order 1050.1E, “Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures” prior to any FAA final regulatory action.

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 71

    Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air).

    The Proposed Amendment

    Accordingly, pursuant to the authority delegated to me, the Federal Aviation Administration proposes to amend 14 CFR part 71 as follows:

    PART 71—DESIGNATION OF CLASS A, B, C, D, AND E AIRSPACE AREAS; AIR TRAFFIC SERVICE ROUTES; AND REPORTING POINTS 1. The authority citation for 14 CFR part 71 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    49 U.S.C. 106(f), 106(g); 40103, 40113, 40120; E.O. 10854, 24 FR 9565, 3 CFR, 1959-1963 Comp., p. 389.

    § 71.1 [Amended]
    2. The incorporation by reference in 14 CFR 71.1 of FAA Order 7400.9Y, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 6, 2014, and effective September 15, 2014, is amended as follows: Paragraph 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward From 700 Feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth AWP AZ E5 Cottonwood, AZ [New] Cottonwoood Airport, AZ (Lat. 34°43′48″ N., long. 112°02′07″ W.)

    That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 4-mile radius of Cottonwood Airport excluding that airspace southwest of a line beginning where the 299° bearing from the airport intersects the 4-mile radius to a point where the 181° bearing from the airport intersects the 4-mile radius; and that airspace 1.8 miles southwest and 1.2 miles northeast of the 150° bearing from the 4-mile radius to 15 miles southeast of the airport.

    Issued in Seattle, Washington, on July 29, 2015. Christopher Ramirez, Manager, Operations Support Group, Western Service Center.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19240 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Parts 9, 22, 85, 86, 600, 1033, 1036, 1037, 1039, 1042, 1065, 1066, and 1068 DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION National Highway Traffic Safety Administration 49 CFR Parts 512, 523, 534, 535, 537, and 583 [EPA-HQ-OAR-2014-0827; NHTSA-2014-0132; FRL-9931-48-OAR] RIN 2060-AS16; 2127-AL52 Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Fuel Efficiency Standards for Medium- and Heavy-Duty Engines and Vehicles—Phase 2; Notice of Public Hearings and Comment Period Correction

    Proposed Rule document 2015-18527 was inadvertently published in the Rules section of the issue of July 28, 2015, beginning on page 44893. It should have appeared in the Proposed Rules section.

    [FR Doc. 2015-19297 Filed 8-3-15; 11:15 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Maritime Administration 46 CFR Part 296 [Docket Number MARAD-2014-0043] RIN 2133-AB86 Maritime Security Program AGENCY:

    Maritime Administration, Department of Transportation.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking, request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    The Maritime Administration (“MARAD”) is soliciting public comments on amendments to its regulations that implement amendments to the Maritime Security Act of 2003 by the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013 (“NDAA 2013”). The proposed revisions to the regulation, among other things, make changes to vessel eligibility for participation in the Maritime Security Program (MSP), authorize the extension of current MSP Operating Agreements, establish a new procedure for the award of new MSP Operating Agreements, extend the MSP through fiscal year 2025, update the Operating Agreement payments and schedule of payments, and eliminate the Maintenance and Repair Pilot Program.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before October 5, 2015. MARAD will consider comments filed after this date to the extent practicable.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments identified by DOT Docket Number MARAD-2014-0043 by any of the following methods:

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Search MARAD-2014-0043 and follow the instructions for submitting comments.

    Email: [email protected] Include MARAD-2014-0043 in the subject line of the message.

    Fax: (202) 493-2251.

    Mail: Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Building, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590. If you would like to know that your comments reached the facility, please enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard or envelope.

    Hand Delivery/Courier: Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Building, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590. The Docket Management Facility is open 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except on Federal holidays.

    Note:

    If you fax, mail or hand deliver your input we recommend that you include your name and a mailing address, an email address, or a telephone number in the body of your document so that we can contact you if we have questions regarding your submission. If you submit your inputs by mail or hand delivery, submit them in an unbound format, no larger than 8 1/2 by 11 inches, suitable for copying and electronic filing.

    Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name and docket number or Regulatory Information Number (RIN) for this rulemaking. All comments received will be posted without change to the docket at www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided. For detailed instructions on submitting comments and additional information on the rulemaking process, see the section entitled Public Participation.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    William G. Kurfehs, Acting Director, Office of Sealift Support, U.S. Department of Transportation, Maritime Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590. Telephone (202) 366-2318; Fax (202) 366-5904, electronic mail to [email protected] If you have questions on viewing the Docket, call Docket Operations, telephone: (800) 647-5527.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    Section 3508 of the NDAA 2013 authorized the extension of the Maritime Security Program through fiscal year 2025. Under Section 3508, the Secretary of Transportation, acting through the Maritime Administrator, is authorized to offer to extend the existing 60 MSP Operating Agreements through fiscal year 2025. Section 3508 authorized a new payment schedule of increasing MSP Operating Agreement payments through fiscal year 2025. Section 3508 also provided a new procedure for awarding MSP Operating Agreements, including a new priority system for the award of operating agreements. Under the new priority, award will be first based on vessel type as determined by military requirements and then based on the citizenship status of the applicant. Section 3508 revised the procedure for the transfer of Operating Agreements by eliminating the requirement to first offer an Operating Agreement to a U.S. Citizen under 46 U.S.C. 50501. In addition, Section 3508 eliminated the procedure for early termination of MSP Operating Agreements by available replacement vessels. Section 3508 also the eliminated the eligibility of Lighter Aboard Ship (LASH) vessels to participate in the MSP Fleet as a stand-alone category of vessel. The proposed rule eliminates the Maintenance and Repair Pilot Program, which has sunset and was not extended by the NDAA 2013. The proposed rule also updates MARAD's address for the purposes of submitting required reports and vouchers.

    Public Participation

    Your comments must be written and in English. To ensure that your comments are correctly filed in the Docket, please include the docket number in your comments. MARAD encourages you to provide concise comments. However, you may attach necessary additional documents to your comments. There is no limit on the length of the attachments. Please submit your comments, including the attachments, following the instructions provided under the above heading entitled ADDRESSES.

    If you wish to submit any information under a claim of confidentiality, you should submit three copies of your complete submission, including the information you claim to be confidential business information, to the Department of Transportation, Maritime Administration, Office of Legislation and Regulations, MAR-225, W24-220, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590. When you send comments containing information claimed to be confidential information, you should include a cover letter setting forth with specificity the basis for any such claim and, if possible, a summary of your submission that could be made available to the public.

    MARAD will consider all comments received before the close of business on the comment closing date indicated above under DATES. To the extent possible, MARAD will also consider comments received after that date. If a comment is received too late for MARAD to consider in developing a final rule (assuming that one is issued), MARAD will consider that comment as an informal suggestion for future rulemaking action.

    For access to the docket to read background documents, including those referenced in this document, or to submit or read comments received, go to the Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Building, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590. The Docket Management Facility is open 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except on Federal holidays. To review documents, read comments or to submit comments, the docket is also available online at http://www.regulations.gov., keyword search MARAD-2014-0043.

    Please note that even after the comment period has closed, MARAD will continue to file relevant information in the Docket as it becomes available. Further, some people may submit late comments. Accordingly, MARAD recommends that you periodically check the Docket for new material.

    Privacy Act

    Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all comments received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual submitting the comment (or signing the comment, if submitted on behalf of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review the DOT Privacy Act system of records notice for the Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) in the Federal Register published on January 17, 2008, (73 FR 3316) at http://edocket.access.thefederalregister.org/2008/pdf/E8-785.pdf.

    Rulemaking Analysis and Notices

    Executive Orders 12866 (Regulatory Planning and Review), 13563 (Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review) and DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures. Under E.O. 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993), supplemented by E.O.13563 (76 FR 3821, January 18, 2011) and DOT policies and procedures, MARAD must determine whether a regulatory action is “significant,” and therefore subject to Office of Management and Budget (OMB) review and the requirements of the E.O. The Order defines “significant regulatory action” as one likely to result in a rule that may: (1) Have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more or adversely affect in a material way the economy, a sector of the economy, productivity, competition, jobs, the environment, public health or safety, or State, local, or tribal government or communities; (2) create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with an action taken or planned by another Agency;(3) materially alter the budgetary impact of entitlements, grants, user fees, or loan programs or the rights and obligations of recipients thereof; and. (4) raise novel legal or policy issues arising out of legal mandates, the President's priorities, or the principles set forth in the E.O.

    A determination has been made that this notice of proposed rulemaking is not considered a significant regulatory action under section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866. This rulemaking will not result in an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more. It is also not considered a major rule for purposes of Congressional review under Public Law 104-121. This rulemaking is also not significant under the Regulatory Policies and Procedures of the Department of Transportation (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979). The costs and overall economic impact of this rulemaking do not require further analysis.

    Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)

    This rulemaking was analyzed in accordance with the principles and criteria contained in Executive Order 13132 (“Federalism”) and have determined that it does not have sufficient Federalism implications to warrant the preparation of a Federalism summary impact statement. This rulemaking has no substantial effect on the States, or on the current Federal-State relationship, or on the current distribution of power and responsibilities among the various local officials. Nothing in this document preempts any State law or regulation. Therefore, MARAD did not consult with State and local officials because it was not necessary.

    Executive Order 13175 (Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal Governments)

    MARAD does not believe that this rulemaking will significantly or uniquely affect the communities of Indian tribal governments when analyzed under the principles and criteria contained in Executive Order 13175 (Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments). Therefore, the funding and consultation requirements of this Executive Order do not apply.

    Executive Order 12372 (Intergovernmental Review)

    The regulations implementing Executive Order 12372 regarding intergovernmental consultation on Federal programs and activities do not apply to this rulemaking.

    Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 requires MARAD to assess whether this rulemaking would have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities and to minimize any adverse impact. MARAD certifies that this rulemaking will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

    Environmental Assessment

    We have analyzed this rulemaking for purposes of compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.) and have concluded that under the categorical exclusions provision in section 4.05 of Maritime Administrative Order (MAO) 600-1, “Procedures for Considering Environmental Impacts,” 50 FR 11606 (March 22, 1985), neither the preparation of an Environmental Assessment, an Environmental Impact Statement, nor a Finding of No Significant Impact for this rulemaking is required. This rulemaking has no environmental impact.

    Executive Order 13211 (Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use)

    MARAD has determined that this rulemaking will not significantly affect energy supply, distribution, or use. Therefore, no Statement of Energy Effects is required.

    Executive Order 13045 (Protection of Children)

    Executive Order 13045, Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks, requires agencies issuing “economically significant” rules that involve an environmental health or safety risk that may disproportionately affect children, to include an evaluation of the regulation's environmental health and safety effects on children. As discussed previously, this rulemaking is not economically significant, and will cause no environmental or health risk that disproportionately affects children.

    Executive Order 12988 (Civil Justice Reform)

    This action meets applicable standards in sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) of E.O. 12988, Civil Justice Reform, to minimize litigation, eliminates ambiguity, and reduce burden.

    Executive Order 12630 (Taking of Private Property)

    This rulemaking will not effect a taking of private property or otherwise have taking implications under Executive Order 12630, Governmental Actions and Interference with Constitutionally Protected Property Rights.

    International Trade Impact Assessment

    This rulemaking is not expected to contain standards-related activities that create unnecessary obstacles to the foreign commerce of the United States.

    Privacy Impact Assessment

    Section 522(a)(5) of the Transportation, Treasury, Independent Agencies, and General Government Appropriations Act, 2005 (Pub. L. 108-447, div. H, 118 Stat. 2809 at 3268) requires the Department of Transportation and certain other Federal agencies to conduct a privacy impact assessment of each proposed rule that will affect the privacy of individuals. Claims submitted under this rule will be treated the same as all legal claims received by MARAD. The processing and treatment of any claim within the scope of this rulemaking by MARAD shall comply with all legal, regulatory and policy requirements regarding privacy.

    Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

    The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 requires Agencies to evaluate whether an Agency action would result in the expenditure by State, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $141.3 million or more (as adjusted for inflation) in any 1 year, and if so, to take steps to minimize these unfunded mandates. This rulemaking will not impose unfunded mandates under the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995. It will not result in costs of $141.3 million or more to either State, local, or tribal governments, in the aggregate, or to the private sector, and is the least burdensome alternative that achieves the objectives of the rule.

    Regulation Identifier Number (RIN)

    A regulation identifier number (RIN) is assigned to each regulatory action listed in the Unified Agenda of Federal Regulations. The Regulatory Information Service Center publishes the Unified Agenda in April and October of each year. The RIN number contained in the heading of this document can be used to cross-reference this action with the Unified Agenda.

    Paperwork Reduction Act

    Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA) (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), Federal agencies must obtain approval from OMB for each collection of information they conduct, sponsor, or require through regulations. This rulemaking proposes to update the regulations due to amendments to the Maritime Security Act. This rulemaking contains no new or amended information collection or recordkeeping requirements that have been approved or require approval by OMB.

    List of Subjects in 46 CFR Part 296

    Assistance payments, Maritime carriers, Reporting and record keeping requirements.

    For the reasons set out in the preamble, the Maritime Administration proposes to amend 46 CFR part 296 as follows:

    PART 296—MARITIME SECURITY PROGRAM 1. The authority citation for part 296 is revised to read as follows: Authority:

    Pub. L. 108-136, Pub. L. 109-163, Pub. L. Pub. L. 112-239; 49 U.S.C. 322(a), 49 CFR 1.93.

    2. Amend § 296.2 by: a. Revising the definitions of Foreign Commerce, MSA 2003, Participating Fleet Vessel, and Section 2 Citizen; and b. Removing the definition of Lash Vessel.

    The revisions to read as follows:

    § 296.2 Definitions.

    Foreign Commerce means—

    (1) Commerce or trade between the United States, its territories, or the District of Columbia, and a foreign country; and

    (2) Commerce or trade between foreign countries.

    MSA 2003 means the Maritime Security Act of 2003, as amended.

    Participating Fleet Vessel means a vessel that—

    (1) On October 1, 2015—

    (i) Meets the requirements of paragraph (1), (2), (3), or (4) of section 53102(c) of the MSA; and

    (ii) Is less than 20 years old of age if the vessel is a tank vessel, or is less than 25 years of age for all other vessel types; and

    (2) on December 31, 2014, is covered by an operating agreement under 46 U.S.C. chapter 531.

    Section 2 Citizen means a United States citizen within the meaning of 46 U.S.C. 50501, without regard to any statute that “deems” a vessel to be owned and operated by a United States citizen within the meaning of 46 U.S.C. 50501.

    3. Amend § 296.11(a)(3) by revising it to read as follows:
    § 296.11 Vessel requirements.

    (a) * * *

    (3) The vessel is self-propelled and—

    (i) Is a tank vessel that is 10 years of age or less on the date the vessel is included in the Fleet; or

    (ii) Is any other type of vessel that is 15 years of age or less on the date the vessel is included in the Fleet;

    §§ 296.21, 296.22, 296.23 [Removed and reserved].

    4. Remove and reserve §§ 296.21 through 296.23. 5. Revise § 296.24 to read as follows:
    § 296.24 Subsequent awards of MSP Operating Agreements.

    (a) MARAD intends to ensure that all available MSP Operating Agreements are fully utilized at all times, in order to maximize the benefit of the MSP. Accordingly, when an MSP Operating Agreement becomes available through termination by the Secretary or early termination by the MSP contractor, and no transfer under 46 U.S.C. 53105(e) is involved, MARAD will reissue the MSP Operating Agreement pursuant to the following criteria:

    (1) The proposed vessel shall meet the requirements for vessel eligibility in 46 U.S.C. 53102(b);

    (2) The applicant shall meet the vessel ownership and operating requirements for priority in 46 U.S.C. 53103(c); and

    (3) Priority will be assigned on the basis of vessel type established by military requirements specified by the Secretary of Defense. After consideration of military requirements, priority shall be given to an applicant that—

    (i) Is a United States citizen under section 50501 of this title; and

    (ii) Offers a vessel of the type established by the Secretary of Defense as meeting military requirements.

    (b) MARAD shall allow an applicant at least 30 days to submit an application for a new Operating Agreement.

    (c) MARAD and USTRANSCOM will determine if the applications received form an adequate pool for award of a reissued MSP Operating Agreement. If so, MARAD will award a reissued MSP Operating Agreement from that pool of qualified applicants in its discretion according to the procedures of paragraph (b) of this section, subject to approval of the Secretary of Defense. MARAD and USTRANSCOM may decide to open a new round of applications. MARAD shall provide written reasons for denying applications. Inasmuch as MSP furthers a public purpose and MARAD does not acquire goods or services through MSP, the selection process for award of MSP Operating Agreements does not constitute an acquisition process subject to any procurement law or the Federal Acquisition Regulations.

    6. Revise § 296.30 to read as follows:
    § 296.30 General conditions.

    (a) Approval. The Secretary, in conjunction with the Secretary of Defense, may approve applications to enter into an MSP Operating Agreement and make MSP Payments with respect to vessels that are determined by the Secretary to be commercially viable and those that are deemed by the Secretary of Defense to be militarily useful for meeting the sealift needs of the United States in time of war or national emergencies. The Secretary announced an initial award of 60 MSP Operating Agreements on January 12, 2005. In June 2014, the Secretary extended the term of all 60 MSP Operating Agreements through FY 2025.

    (b) Effective date—(1) General Rule. Unless otherwise provided, the effective date of an MSP Operating Agreement is October 1, 2005.

    (2) Exceptions. In the case of an Eligible Vessel to be included in an MSP Operating Agreement that is on charter to the U.S. Government, other than a charter under the provisions of an Emergency Preparedness Agreement (EPA) provided by section 53107 of the MSA 2003, as amended unless an earlier date is requested by the applicant, the effective date for an MSP Operating Agreement shall be:

    (i) The expiration or termination date of the Government charter covering the vessel; or

    (ii) Any earlier date on which the vessel is withdrawn from that charter, but not before October 1, 2005.

    (c) Replacement Vessels. A Contractor may replace an MSP vessel under an MSP Operating Agreement with another vessel that is eligible to be included in the MSP under section 296.11(a), if the Secretary, in conjunction with the Secretary of Defense, approves the replacement vessel.

    (d) Termination by the Secretary. If the Contractor materially fails to comply with the terms of the MSP Operating Agreement:

    (1) The Secretary shall notify the Contractor and provide a reasonable opportunity for the Contractor to comply with the MSP Operating Agreement;

    (2) The Secretary shall terminate the MSP Operating Agreement if the Contractor fails to achieve such compliance; and

    (3) Upon such termination, any funds obligated by the relevant MSP Operating Agreement shall be available to the Secretary to carry out the MSP.

    (e) Early termination by Contractor, generally. An MSP Operating Agreement shall terminate on a date specified by the Contractor if the Contractor notifies the Secretary not later than 60 days before the effective date of the proposed termination that the Contractor intends to terminate the MSP Operating Agreement. The Contractor shall be bound by the provisions relating to vessel documentation and national security commitments, and by its EPA for the full term, from October 1, 2005 through September 30, 2025, of the MSP Operating Agreement.

    (f) [Reserved].

    (g) Non-renewal for lack of funds. If, by the first day of a fiscal year, sufficient funds have not been appropriated under the authority of MSA 2003, as amended, for that fiscal year, the Secretary will notify the Senate Committees on Armed Services and Commerce, Science, and Transportation, and the House of Representative Committee on Armed Services, that MSP Operating Agreements for which sufficient funds are not available, will not be renewed for that fiscal year if sufficient funds are not appropriated by the 60th day of that fiscal year. If only partial funding is appropriated by the 60th day of such fiscal year, then the Secretary, in consultation with the Secretary of Defense, shall select the vessels to retain under MSP Operating Agreements, based on the Secretaries' determinations of the most militarily useful and commercially viable vessels. In the event that no funds are appropriated, then all MSP Operating Agreements shall be terminated and, each Contractor shall be released from its obligations under the MSP Operating Agreement. Final payments under the terminated MSP Operating Agreements shall be made in accordance with section 296.41. To the extent that funds are appropriated in a subsequent fiscal year, former MSP Operating Agreements may be reinstated if mutually acceptable to the Administrator and the Contractor provided the MSP vessel remains eligible.

    (h) Release of Vessels from Obligations: If sufficient funds are not appropriated for payments under an MSP Operating Agreement for any fiscal year by the 60th day of that fiscal year, then—

    (1) Each vessel covered by the terminated MSP Operating Agreement is released from any further obligation under the MSP Operating Agreement; and

    (2) If section 902 of the Act is applicable to a vessel that has been transferred to a foreign registry due to a terminated MSP Operating Agreement, then that vessel is available to be requisitioned by the Secretary pursuant to section 902 of the Act.

    (3) Paragraph (h) of this section is not applicable to vessels under MSP Operating Agreements that have been terminated for any other reason.

    (i) Foreign Transfer of Vessel. A Contractor may transfer a non-tank vessel to a foreign registry, without approval of the Secretary, if the Secretary, in conjunction with the Secretary of Defense, determines that the contractor will provide a replacement vessel:

    (1) Of equal or greater military capability or of a capacity that is equivalent or greater as measured in deadweight tons, gross tons, or container equivalent units, as appropriate;

    (2) That is a documented vessel under 46 U.S.C. chapter 121 by the owner of the vessel to be placed under a foreign registry; and

    (3) That is not more than 10 years of age on the date of that documentation.

    (j) Transfer of MSP Operating Agreements. A contractor under an operating agreement may transfer the agreement (including all rights and obligations under the operating agreement) to any person that is eligible to enter into the operating agreement under this chapter if the Secretary and the Secretary of Defense determine that the transfer is in the best interests of the United States. A transaction shall not be considered a transfer of an operating agreement if the same legal entity with the same vessels remains the contracting party under the operating agreement.

    7. Amend § 296.31 by revising paragraphs (a) and (d)(2) and adding paragraph (e)(2)to read as follows:
    § 296.31 MSP assistance conditions.

    (a) Term of MSP Operating Agreement. MSP Operating Agreements are authorized for 20 years, starting on October 1, 2005, and ending on September 30, 2025, but payments to Contractors are subject to annual appropriations each fiscal year. MARAD may enter into MSP Operating Agreements for a period less than the full term authorized under the MSA 2003, as amended.

    (d) * * *

    (2) Operation: Be operated exclusively in the foreign trade and shall not otherwise be operated in the coastwise trade of the United States; and

    (e) * * *

    (2) [Reserved]

    8. Amend § 296.32 by revising the introductory text to read as follows:

    The Contractor shall submit to the Director, Office of Financial Approvals, Maritime Administration, 2nd Floor, West Building, 1200 New Jersey Ave. SE., Washington, DC 20590, one of the following reports, including management footnotes where necessary to make a fair financial presentation:

    9. Revise § 296.40 to read as follows:
    § 296.40 Billing procedures.

    Submission of voucher. For contractors operating under more than one MSP Operating Agreement, the contractor may submit a single monthly voucher applicable to all its MSP Operating Agreements. Each voucher submission shall include a certification that the vessel(s) for which payment is requested were operated in accordance with § 296.31(d) MSP Operating Agreements with MARAD, and consideration shall be given to reductions in amounts payable as set forth in § 296.41(b) and (c). All submissions shall be forwarded to the Director, Office of Accounting, MAR-330, Maritime Administration, 2nd Floor, West Building, 1200 New Jersey Ave. SE., Washington, DC 20590. Payments shall be paid and processed under the terms and conditions of the Prompt Payment Act, 31 U.S.C. 3901.

    10. Amend § 296.41 by revising paragraph (a) to read as follows:
    § 296.41 Payment procedures.

    (a) Amount payable. An MSP Operating Agreement shall provide, subject to the availability of appropriations and to the extent the MSP Operating Agreement is in effect, for each Agreement Vessel, an annual payment equal to $2,600,000 for FY 2006, FY 2007, FY 2008; $2,900,000 for FY 2009, FY 2010, FY 2011; and $3,100,000 for FY 2012, FY 2013, FY 2014, FY 2015, FY 2016, 2017, and 2018; $3,500,000 for FY 2019, 2020, and 2021; and $3,700,000 for FY 2022, 2023, 2024, and 2025. This amount shall be paid in equal monthly installments at the end of each month. The annual amount payable shall not be reduced except as provided in paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section.

    Subpart G [Removed] 11. Remove Subpart G, consisting of § 296.60. Dated: July 31, 2015.

    By Order of the Maritime Administrator.

    T. Mitchell Hudson, Jr., Secretary, Maritime Administration.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19254 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-81-P
    DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION 48 CFR Parts 1, 4, 9, 17, 22, and 52 [FAR Case 2014-025; Docket No. 2014-0025; Sequence No. 1] RIN 9000-AM81 Federal Acquisition Regulation; Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces; Second Extension of Time for Comments AGENCY:

    Department of Defense (DoD), General Services Administration (GSA), and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule; second extension of comment period.

    SUMMARY:

    DoD, GSA, and NASA issued a proposed rule (FAR Case 2014-025) on May 28, 2015, amending the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) to implement Executive Order (E.O.) 13673, “Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces,” which is designed to improve contractor compliance with labor laws and increase efficiency and cost savings in Federal contracting.

    On July 14, 2015, DoD, GSA, and NASA published an extension of the comment period by 15 days, from July 27, 2015, to August 11, 2015. The deadline for submitting comments is being further extended by an additional 15 days from August 11, 2015, to August 26, 2015, to provide additional time for interested parties to comment on the FAR case. The due date for comments on DOL's Guidance for Executive Order 13673, “Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces”, which also implements the E.O., is being extended to August 26, 2015 as well.

    DATES:

    The comment period for the purposed rule published on May 28, 2015 (80 FR 30548), is extended. Submit comments by August 26, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit comments in response to FAR Case 2014-025 by any of the following methods:

    • Regulations.gov: http://www.regulations.gov. Submit comments via the Federal eRulemaking portal by searching for “FAR Case 2014-025”. Select the link “Comment Now” that corresponds with “FAR Case 2014-025.” Follow the instructions provided at the “Comment Now” screen. Please include your name, company name (if any), and “FAR Case 2014-025” on your attached document.

    • Mail: General Services Administration, Regulatory Secretariat (MVCB), ATTN: Ms. Flowers, 1800 F Street NW., 2nd Floor, Washington, DC 20405.

    Instructions: Please submit comments only and cite FAR Case 2014-025, in all correspondence related to this case. All comments received will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal and/or business confidential information provided.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Mr. Edward Loeb, Procurement Analyst, at 202-501-0650, for clarification of content. For information pertaining to status or publication schedules, contact the Regulatory Secretariat at 202-501-4755. Please cite FAR Case 2014-025.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    DoD, GSA, NASA published a proposed rule in the Federal Register at 80 FR 30548, May 28, 2015. The comment period is extended to provide additional time for interested parties to submit comments on the FAR case until August 26, 2015.

    List of Subjects in 48 CFR Parts 1, 4, 9, 17, 22, and 52

    Government procurement.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. William F. Clark, Director, Office of Government-wide Acquisition Policy, Office of Acquisition Policy, Office of Government-wide Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19169 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6820-EP-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 648 [Docket No.: 150626556-5556-01] RIN 0648-BF20 Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery; State Waters Exemption AGENCY:

    National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule; request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS proposes regulations to allow an exemption for Northern Gulf of Maine federally permitted vessels with state-waters permits issued from the State of Maine to continue fishing in the Maine state-waters portion of the Northern Gulf of Maine management area once NMFS has announced that the Federal total allowable catch has been fully harvested in a given year. Maine requested this exemption as part of the Scallop State Water Exemption Program, which specifies that a state may be eligible for a state waters exemption to specific Federal regulations if it has a scallop fishery and a scallop conservation program that does not jeopardize the biomass and fishing mortality/effort limit objectives of the Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery Management Plan. The regulations further state that the Regional Administrator, Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office, NMFS, shall determine if a state meets that criteria and shall authorize the exemption for such state by publishing a rule in the Federal Register. Based on the information that Maine has submitted, NMFS has preliminarily determined that Maine qualifies for this exemption and that this exemption would not have an impact on the effectiveness of Federal management measures for the scallop fishery overall or within the Northern Gulf of Maine management area.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received by 5 p.m., local time, on September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Documents supporting this action, including the State of Maine's (Maine) request for the exemption and Framework Adjustment 26 to the Atlantic Sea Scallop Fishery Management Plan (Scallop FMP) are available upon request from John K. Bullard, Regional Administrator, NMFS, Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office, 55 Great Republic Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930.

    You may submit comments on this document, identified by NOAA-NMFS- 2015-0079 by any of the following methods:

    Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2015-0079, click the “Comment Now!” icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments.

    Mail: John K. Bullard, Regional Administrator, NMFS, Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office, 55 Great Republic Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930. Mark the outside of the envelope, “Comments on Maine State Waters Exemption Program.”

    Instructions: Comments sent by any other method, to any other address or individual, or received after the end of the comment period, may not be considered by NMFS. All comments received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted for public viewing on www.regulations.gov without change. All personal identifying information (e.g., name, address, etc.), confidential business information, or otherwise sensitive information submitted voluntarily by the sender will be publicly accessible. NMFS will accept anonymous comments (enter“N/A” in the required fields if you wish to remain anonymous). Attachments to electronic comments will be accepted in Microsoft Word, Excel, or Adobe PDF file formats only.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Emily Gilbert, Fishery Policy Analyst, 978-281-9244.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    The Scallop State Waters Exemption Program (Program) has been in place since 1994. The purpose of the Program is to allow Federal permit holders to harvest scallops in the state waters fishery on a more equitable basis where Federal and state laws are inconsistent, while ensuring they continue to submit catch and effort data to NMFS. The Program specifies that a state with a scallop fishery may be eligible for state waters exemptions if it has a scallop conservation program that does not jeopardize the biomass and fishing mortality/effort limit objectives of the Scallop FMP. Under the Program, if NMFS determines that a state is found to be eligible, federally permitted scallop vessels fishing in state waters may be exempted from the following Federal scallop regulations: Limited access scallop vessels may fish in state waters outside of scallop days-at-sea, limited access and limited access general category (LAGC) individual fishing quota vessels may be exempt from Federal gear and possession limit restrictions, and vessels with selected scallop permit types may be exempt from specific regulations pertaining to the Northern Gulf of Maine (NGOM) management area.

    The exemption from specific regulations pertaining to the NGOM management area was recently added to the Program via Framework 26 to the Scallop FMP, implemented on May 1, 2015, which specifically allows states to apply for a specific exemption that would enable some scallop vessels to continue to fish in state waters within the NGOM management area once the Federal NGOM total allowable catch (TAC) is reached. Any state interested in applying for this exemption must identify the scallop-permitted vessels that would be subject to the exemption (i.e., limited access, LAGC individual fishing quota, LAGC incidental, or LAGC NGOM). However, vessels would not be able to fish for scallops in the Federal portion of the NGOM once the TAC is harvested.

    Maine currently has the state waters exemptions from gear and effort control restrictions for vessels issued Federal scallop permits and Maine commercial scallop licenses that are fishing exclusively in Maine waters (74 FR 37952; July 30, 2009). Following the implementation of Framework 26, NMFS received a request from the state to expand its current exemptions to allow federally NGOM-permitted vessels with Maine state-waters permits to fish in the Maine state-waters portion of the NGOM management area once we project the Federal NGOM TAC to be fully harvested. This provision would allow those vessels to continue to fish in state waters along with state permitted vessels without Federal permits. Although the 70,000-lb (31,751-kg) NGOM Federal TAC has never been exceeded since the NGOM management area was created in 2008, there is now a higher potential that the TAC will be reached because scallop effort has increased in the NGOM in recent years as the stock has improved, particularly in state waters. Without this exemption, these federally permitted vessels would be prevented from participating in Maine's state water fishery if the Federal NGOM TAC is reached. State-only permitted scallop vessels are able to continue to fish in state waters after the Federal closure.

    Based on the information Maine submitted regarding its scallop conservation program, NMFS has preliminarily determined that the state qualifies for the NGOM state waters exemption under the Scallop FMP. As required by the scallop fishery regulations, exemptions can only be granted if the state's scallop fishery would not jeopardize the biomass and fishing mortality/effort limit objectives of the FMP. Maine's scallop fishery restrictions are as restrictive as Federal scallop fishing regulations. Maine's scallop fishery became limited access in 2008. Fishing time and effort on scallop trips are limited by possession limits and a short season. The fishery is open only 70 days of the year, between December and March. Maine manages the fishery in its waters by a rotational management plan and employs a trigger mechanism that closes a given area if 30 to 40 percent of the harvestable biomass has been removed. Maine has issued 545 commercial dragger scallop licenses, in addition to 82 commercial dive licenses. In 2014, 438 of these licenses were active (i.e., landed scallops at least once). There are currently 40 federally NGOM-permitted vessels also issued Maine commercial scallop licenses, and 12 of them are currently active in the state fishery. If these federally permitted vessels were allowed to continue fishing for scallops in Maine state waters after the NGOM TAC is harvested, Maines's restrictive scallop fishery regulations would still limit mortality and effort. Allowing for this NGOM exemption would have no impact on the effectiveness of Federal management measures for the scallop fishery overall or within the NGOM management area because the NGOM Federal TAC is set based only on the portion of the resource in Federal waters.

    Maine is the only state that has requested a NGOM closure exemption. Maine requested that this exemption apply only to vessels with Federal NGOM permits. As such, all other federally permitted scallop vessel categories would be prohibited from retaining, possessing, and landing scallops from within the NGOM management area, in both Federal and state waters, once the NGOM hard TAC is fully harvested.

    Classification

    Pursuant to section 304(b)(1)(A) of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, the NMFS Assistant Administrator has determined that this proposed rule is consistent with the FMP, other provisions of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, and other applicable law, subject to further consideration after public comment.

    This proposed rule has been determined to be not significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866.

    The Chief Council for Regulation of the Department of Commerce certified to the Chief Council for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration that this proposed rule, if adopted, would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The ability for states with territorial waters located within the NGOM management area to apply for this specific exemption was included into the Scallop FMP through Framework 26, which was implemented in May 2015. That action included a Final Regulatory Flexibility Analyses (FRFA) that analyzed the economic impacts of this NGOM exemption on small entities.

    This action would impact up to 40 NGOM-permitted vessels home ported in Maine. Although only 12 of these vessels are currently active, more vessels could enter the fishery at any time and benefit from the exemption. Based on available information, NMFS has determined that all 40 NGOM-permitted vessels that would be impacted by this rule are small entities under the Small Business Administration's size standards because they are all engaged in the business of fish harvesting, are independently owned or operated, are not dominant in their field of operation, and have annual gross receipts not in excess of $5.5 million if fishing for shellfish (NAICS code: 114112).

    This exemption is expected to have positive impacts on the revenues of applicable scallop vessels and positive impacts on the overall economic benefits from the scallop resource in state waters. Should the Federal NGOM fishery close, this exemption will result in moderate to high positive impacts on scallop revenue in Maine because NGOM scallopers will be able to continue fishing for scallops in state waters. This proposed action would not have any additional impacts on federally permitted vessels beyond what was analyzed in Framework 26 and would not create any additional economic impacts that were not considered in that action's FRFA.

    List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 648

    Fisheries, Fishing, Recordkeeping and reporting requirements.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Samuel D. Rauch III, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine Fisheries Service.

    For the reasons set out in the preamble, 50 CFR part 648 is proposed to be amended as follows:

    PART 648—FISHERIES OF THE NORTHEASTERN UNITED STATES 1. The authority citation for part 648 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    2. In § 648.54, paragraph (a)(4) is revised to read as follows:
    § 648.54 State waters exemption.

    (a) * * *

    (4) The Regional Administrator has determined that the State of Maine has a scallop fishery conservation program for its scallop fishery that does not jeopardize the biomass and fishing mortality/effort limit objectives of the Scallop FMP. A vessel fishing in State of Maine waters may fish under the State of Maine state waters exemption, subject to the exemptions specified in paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section, provided the vessel is in compliance with paragraphs (e) through (g) of this section. In addition, a vessel issued a Federal Northern Gulf of Maine permit fishing in State of Maine waters may fish under the State of Maine state waters exemption specified in paragraph (d) of this section, provided the vessel is in compliance with paragraphs (e) through (g) of this section.

    [FR Doc. 2015-19149 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 697 [Docket No. 150610515-5515-01] RIN 0648-BF16 Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Coastal Fisheries Cooperative Management Act Provisions; American Lobster Fishery AGENCY:

    National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule; request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    Based on Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission recommendations, we, the National Marine Fisheries Service, are proposing to modify the Lobster Conservation Management Area 4 seasonal closure and are requesting comment. This action is necessary to reduce fishing effort in Area 4 by 10 percent. This action is intended to ensure fishery regulations for the lobster fishery in Federal waters remain consistent with the Commission's Interstate Fishery Management Plan for American Lobster and previously implemented state measures and the intent of the Atlantic Coastal Fisheries Cooperative Management Act.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments on this document, identified by NOAA-NMFS-2015-0075, by any of the following methods:

    Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2015-0075, click the “Comment Now!” icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments.

    Mail: Submit written comments to John K. Bullard, Regional Administrator, NMFS, Northeast Regional Office, 55 Great Republic Drive, Gloucester, MA 01930. Mark the outside of the envelope: “Comments on American Lobster Proposed Rule.”

    Instructions: Comments sent by any other method, to any other address or individual, or received after the end of the comment period, may not be considered by NMFS. All comments received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted for public viewing on www.regulations.gov without change. All personal identifying information (e.g., name, address, etc.), confidential business information, or otherwise sensitive information submitted voluntarily by the sender will be publicly accessible. NMFS will accept anonymous comments (enter “N/A” in the required fields if you wish to remain anonymous).

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Allison Murphy, Fishery Policy Analyst, (978) 281-9122.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    The American lobster fishery is managed by the Commission under Amendment 3 to the Interstate Fishery Management Pan for American Lobster (ISFMP). Since 1997, the Commission has coordinated the efforts of the states and Federal Government toward sustainable management of the American lobster fishery. We manage the portion of the fishery conducted in Federal waters from 3 to 200 miles offshore, based on management recommendations made by the Commission.

    The American lobster management unit is divided between three lobster stocks and seven Lobster Conservation Management Areas.

    EP05AU15.013

    The 2009 stock assessment indicated that the Southern New England American lobster stock, which includes all or part of six areas, is at a low level of abundance and is experiencing persistent recruitment failure, caused by a combination of environmental factors and continued fishing mortality. To address the poor condition of the Southern New England stock, the Commission adopted Addendum XVII to Amendment 3 of the ISFMP in February of 2012. The measures in Addendum XVII were intended to reduce fishing exploitation on the Southern New England lobster stock by 10 percent. Copies of the Addendum are available on the Commission's Web site at: http://www.asmfc.org.

    Consistent with the Commission's action in Addendum XVII, we issued complementary regulations (80 FR 2028; January 15, 2015) for Areas 2, 3, 4, and 5. Measures for Area 4 included mandatory v-notching requirement of egg-bearing female lobster and an annual seasonal closure from February 1-March 31. States, as required, came into compliance with Addendum XVII by January 1, 2013.

    Proposed Measures

    We are now proposing to change the Area 4 seasonal closure from February 1-March 31 to April 30-May 31, consistent with the Commission's recommendation. The American Lobster Technical Committee analyzed the effectiveness of the February 1-March 31 closure after it was implemented by the states and presented these results to the Commission in late 2014. The Technical Committee's analysis indicated that the February and March closure in Area 4 achieved only a 3.7-percent reduction in effort, falling short of the required 10-percent reduction. The Technical Committee recommended that the Lobster Board shift the annual seasonal closure from February 1-March 31 to April 30-May 31. The Technical Committee projected that this shift would achieve a 10.1-percent reduction in effort. The Lobster Board reviewed this analysis and approved the Area 4 seasonal closure modification during several meetings in late 2014 and early 2015. The Lobster Board also recommended that all jurisdictions change the closure date to April 30-May 31 annually. New York and New Jersey (the two states bordering Area 4) have already adjusted their regulatory closure to this later date. In addition, the states have retained the 1-week grace period at the end of the seasonal closure to reset unbaited gear. They did not retain the 2-week grace period at the start of the closure and state regulations.

    The affected states have already issued or are in the process of issuing regulations that comply with this change. We are proposing to shift the timing of the Area 4 seasonal closure, consistent with the Commission's recommendation.

    Classification

    This proposed rule has been preliminary determined to be consistent with the provisions of the Atlantic Coastal Act, the National Standards of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, and other applicable laws, subject to further consideration after public comment.

    This proposed rule has been determined to be not significant for the purposes of Executive Order (E.O.) 12866.

    This proposed rule does not contain policies with federalism implications as that term is defined in E.O. 13132. The proposed measures are based upon the American Lobster ISFMP that was created by and is overseen by the states. The proposed measures were a result of a modification to Addendum XVII measures, which was approved by the states, recommended by the states through the Commission for Federal adoption, and are in place at the state level. Consequently, NMFS has consulted with the states in the creation of the ISFMP, which makes recommendations for Federal action. Additionally, these proposed measures would not pre-empt state law and would do nothing to directly regulate the states.

    This proposed rule does not contain a collection of information requirement subject to review and approval by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA).

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), 5 U.S.C. 601-612, requires agencies to assess the economic impacts of their proposed regulations on small entities. The objective of the RFA is to consider the impacts of a rulemaking on small entities, and the capacity of those affected by regulations to bear the direct and indirect costs of regulation. We prepared an Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (IRFA) for this action as required by section 603 of the RFA. The IRFA describes the economic impact this proposed rule, if adopted, would have on small entities. The proposed management measure would affect small entities (i.e., Federal lobster permit holders) fishing in Southern New England, specifically in Area 4.

    Description of the Reasons Why Action by NMFS Is Being Considered

    For a full description of the reasons why this action is being considered, please refer to the Background section of the preamble. The Commission has recommended a change to the Area 4 seasonal closure, which is expected to better achieve the required effort reduction. The affected states have already issued regulations that comply with this change. Consistent with the Atlantic Coastal Act, we intend to implement regulations consistent with Commission recommendations and those promulgated by our partner states.

    Statement of the Objectives of, and Legal Basis for, This Proposed Rule

    The objective of the proposed action is to assist in the reduction of fishing exploitation by 10 percent as part of an overall effort to rebuild the Southern New England lobster stock. The legal basis for the proposed action is the ISFMP and promulgating regulations at 50 CFR part 697.

    Description and Estimate of the Number of Small Entities to Which the Proposed Rule Would Apply

    The RFA recognizes and defines three kinds of small entities: Small businesses; small organizations; and small governmental jurisdictions. The Small Business Administration (SBA) size standards define whether a business entity is small and, thus, eligible for Government programs and preferences reserved for “small business” concerns. Size standards have been established (and recently modified) for all for-profit economic activities or industries in the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS). Designations of large and small entities were based on each entity's 3-year average landings. For entities landing a plurality of revenue in shellfish (NAICS 111412), the threshold for “large” is $5.0 million. For entities landing a plurality of revenue in finfish (NAICS 111411), the threshold for “large” is $19.0 million. The number of directly regulated entities for purposes of analyzing the economic impacts and describing those that are small businesses is selected based on permits held. Since this proposed regulation applies only to the businesses that hold Area 4 permits, only those business entities are evaluated. Business entities that do not own vessels with directly regulated permits are not described.

    Of the 47 small entities identified in the IRFA, 23 are considered a shellfish business, 12 are considered a finfish business, and 12 could not be identified as either because even though they had a lobster permit (in Area 4), they had no earned revenue from fishing activity. Because they had no revenue in the last 3 years, they would be considered small by default, but would also be considered as latent effort.

    The entity definition used by the Northeast Fisheries Science Center Social Sciences Branch uses only unique combinations of owners. That is, entities are not combined if they have a shared owner. Section 3 of the SBA defines affiliation as: Affiliation may arise among two or more persons with an identity of interest. Individuals or firms that have identical or substantially identical business or economic interests (such as family members, individuals or firms with common investments, or firms that are economically dependent through contractual or other relationships) may be treated as one party with such interests aggregated (13 CFR 121.103(f)).

    The recent addition of vessel owner information to the permit data allows us to better define fishing “businesses.” The vessel ownership data identify all the individual people who own fishing vessels. Vessels can be grouped together according to common owners, which can then be treated as a fishing business, for purposes of RFA analyses. Revenues summed across all vessels in the group and the activities that generate those revenues form the basis for determining whether the entity is a large or small business. Ownership data are available for the potentially impacted by the proposed action from 2010 onward.

    A person who does not currently own a fishing vessel, but who has owned a qualifying vessel that has sunk, been destroyed, or transferred to another person, must apply for and receive a “confirmation of history” (CPH) if the fishing and permit history of such vessel has been retained lawfully by the applicant. Issuance of a valid CPH preserves the eligibility of the applicant to apply for a permit for a replacement vessel based on the qualifying vessel's fishing and permit history at a subsequent time. The ownership data based on the permits held do not contain information on CPH permits. A total of six CPH's exist for lobster Area 4.

    While considering the number of affected entities, it is also worth noting that the vast majority of permit holders are either dually permitted (i.e., issued both a Federal and state permit) or otherwise subject to a state's lobster regulations. Accordingly, most all Federal permit holders will be required to comply with the proposed measures even if NMFS does not implement these measures. In other words, these Federal permit holders will be obligated to comply with these measures and responsibilities attendant to their state permit regardless of whether these same measures are also required under their Federal permit. In fact, if we do not take the proposed action, these dual permit holders will be restricted for a total of 3 months (February 1-March 31 under the Federal permit and April 30-May 31 under the state permit). Neither the Technical Committee or the Lobster Board recommended this scenario.

    Descriptions of Significant Alternatives Which Minimize Any Significant Economic Impact of Proposed Action on Small Entities

    Due to the expected high rate of dual permitting and that the fact that all of the impacted states already comply with the revised Area 4 seasonal closure or soon will, the majority of Federal vessels must already abide by these requirements, and therefore have already been impacted. For those vessels not dually permitted, this change in the Area 4 seasonal closure can be expected to have limited economic impact to permit holders. Because the proposed regulations are consistent with Commission recommendations and current state regulations, alternative measures, such as maintaining the status quo, would likely create inconsistencies and regulatory disconnects with the states and would likely worsen potential economic impacts. Therefore, the status quo was not considered reasonable, and, for similar reasons, other alternatives that maintained disconnected state and Federal closures were not considered. The status quo is also inconsistent with the objectives of Addendum XVII to the ISFMP and, consequently, was not considered.

    Reporting, Recordkeeping and Other Compliance Requirements

    This action contains no new collection-of-information, reporting, or recordkeeping requirements.

    Duplication, Overlap or Conflict With Other Federal Rules

    This action does not duplicate, overlap, or conflict with any other Federal Laws.

    List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 697

    Fisheries, fishing.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Samuel D. Rauch III, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine Fisheries Service.

    For the reasons set out in the preamble, 50 CFR part 697 is proposed to be amended as follows:

    PART 697—ATLANTIC COASTAL FISHERIES COOPERATIVE MANAGEMENT 1. The authority citation for part 697 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 5101 et seq.

    2. In § 697.7, revise paragraph (c)(1)(xxx)(B) to read as follows:
    § 697.7 Prohibitions.

    (c) * * *

    (1) * * *

    (xxx) * * *

    (B) Area 4 seasonal closure. The Federal waters of Area 4 shall be closed to lobster fishing from April 30 through May 31.

    (1) Lobster fishing is prohibited in Area 4 during this seasonal closure. Federal lobster permit holders are prohibited from possessing or landing lobster taken from Area 4 during the seasonal closure.

    (2) All lobster traps must be removed from Area 4 waters before the start of the seasonal closure and may not be re-deployed into Area 4 waters until after the seasonal closure ends. Federal trap fishers are prohibited from setting, hauling, storing, abandoning, or in any way leaving their traps in Area 4 waters during this seasonal closure.

    (i) Lobster fishers have a 1-week grace period from May 24 to May 31 to re-set gear in the closed area. During this grace period, re-set traps may not be re-hauled and any Federal lobster permit holder re-setting Area 4 traps during this grace period is prohibited from possessing on board any lobster regardless of the area from which the lobster may have been harvested.

    (ii) [Reserved]

    (3) Federal lobster permit holders are prohibited from possessing or carrying lobster traps aboard a vessel in Area 4 waters during this seasonal closure unless the vessel is operating subject to the grace period identified in paragraph (c)(1)(xxx)(B)(2)(ii) of this section or is transiting through Area 4 pursuant to paragraph (c)(1)(xxx)(B)(5) of this section.

    (4) The Area 4 seasonal closure relates only to Area 4. The restrictive provisions of § 697.3 and § 697.4(a)(7)(v) do not apply to this closure. Federal lobster permit holders with an Area 4 designation and another Lobster Management Area designation on their Federal lobster permits would not have to similarly remove their lobster gear from the other designated management areas.

    (5) Transiting Area 4. Federal lobster permit holders may possess lobster traps on their vessels in Area 4 during the seasonal closure only if:

    (i) The trap gear is stowed; and

    (ii) The vessel is transiting the Area 4. For the purposes of this section, transiting shall mean passing through Area 4 without stopping, to reach a destination outside Area 4.

    (6) The Regional Administrator may authorize a permit holder or vessel owner to haul ashore lobster traps from Area 4 during the seasonal closure without having to engage in the exempted fishing process in § 697.22, if the permit holder or vessel owner can establish the following:

    (i) That the lobster traps were not able to be hauled ashore before the seasonal closure due to incapacity, vessel/mechanical inoperability, and/or poor weather; and

    (ii) That all lobsters caught in the subject traps will be immediately returned to the sea.

    (iii) The Regional Administrator may condition this authorization as appropriate in order to maintain the overall integrity of the closure.

    [FR Doc. 2015-19233 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    80 150 Wednesday, August 5, 2015 Notices COMMISSION ON CIVIL RIGHTS Notice of Public Meeting of the California Advisory Committee To Receive Information Regarding State Compliance With the Help America Vote Act AGENCY:

    U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

    ACTION:

    Announcement of meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    Notice is hereby given, pursuant to the provisions of the rules and regulations of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights (Commission) and the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) that a meeting of the California Advisory Committee (Committee) to the Commission will be held on Friday, August 28, 2015. The purpose of the meeting is for the Committee to receive information regarding state compliance with the Help America Vote Act. The meeting will be held at the Los Angeles Central Library, 630 W. Fifth Street, Los Angeles, CA 90071. It is scheduled to begin at 10:00 a.m. and adjourn at approximately 5:00 p.m.

    Members of the public are entitled to make comments in the open period at the end of the meeting. Members of the public may also submit written comments. The comments must be received in the Western Regional Office of the Commission by September 28, 2015. The address is Western Regional Office, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, 300 N. Los Angeles Street, Suite 2010, Los Angeles, CA 90012. Persons wishing to email their comments may do so by sending them to Peter Minarik, Regional Director, Western Regional Office, at [email protected] Persons who desire additional information should contact the Western Regional Office, at (213) 894-3437, (or for hearing impaired TDD 913-551-1414), or by email to [email protected]. Hearing-impaired persons who will attend the meeting and require the services of a sign language interpreter should contact the Regional Office at least ten (10) working days before the scheduled date of the meeting.

    Records and documents discussed during the meeting will be available for public viewing prior to and after the meeting at http://facadatabase.gov/committee/meetings.aspx?cid=237 and clicking on the “Meeting Details” and “Documents” links. Records generated from this meeting may also be inspected and reproduced at the Western Regional Office, as they become available, both before and after the meeting. Persons interested in the work of this Committee are directed to the Commission's Web site, http://www.usccr.gov, or may contact the Western Regional Office at the above email or street address.

    Agenda:
    Morning Session—Presentations by the State Auditor and election officials of Los Angeles County and San Diego County Afternoon Session—Presentations from invited community organizations Open Comment Adjournment DATES:

    Friday, August 28, 2015 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. PST.

    ADDRESSES:

    The Los Angeles Central Library, 630 W. Fifth Street, Los Angeles, CA 90071.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Peter Minarik, DFO, at (213) 894-3437 or [email protected].

    Dated: July 31, 2015. David Mussatt, Chief, Regional Programs Coordination Unit.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19187 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6335-01-P
    COMMISSION ON CIVIL RIGHTS Notice of Public Meeting of the Michigan Advisory Committee for a Meeting To Discuss Potential Project Topics AGENCY:

    U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

    ACTION:

    Announcement of meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    Notice is hereby given, pursuant to the provisions of the rules and regulations of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights (Commission) and the Federal Advisory Committee Act that the Michigan Advisory Committee (Committee) will hold a meeting on Monday, October 26, 2015, at 3:00 p.m. EST for the purpose of reviewing and discussing for approval a project proposal regarding the civil rights impact of civil forfeiture practices in the State. The Committee met on July 20, 2015 and voted to take up a study on this topic and potential disparate impact or denial of equal protection under the law on the basis of relevant protected classes.

    Members of the public can listen to the discussion. This meeting is available to the public through the following toll-free call-in number: 888-461-2024, conference ID: 5095705. Any interested member of the public may call this number and listen to the meeting. An open comment period will be provided to allow members of the public to make a statement at the end of the meeting. The conference call operator will ask callers to identify themselves, the organization they are affiliated with (if any), and an email address prior to placing callers into the conference room. Callers can expect to incur charges for calls they initiate over wireless lines, and the Commission will not refund any incurred charges. Callers will incur no charge for calls they initiate over land-line connections to the toll-free telephone number. Persons with hearing impairments may also follow the proceedings by first calling the Federal Relay Service at 1-800-977-8339 and providing the Service with the conference call number and conference ID number.

    Member of the public are also entitled to submit written comments; the comments must be received in the regional office by October 26, 2015. Written comments may be mailed to the Regional Programs Unit, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, 55 W. Monroe St., Suite 410, Chicago, IL 60615. They may also be faxed to the Commission at (312) 353-8324, or emailed to Administrative Assistant, Carolyn Allen at [email protected] Persons who desire additional information may contact the Regional Programs Unit at (312) 353-8311.

    Records and documents discussed during the meeting will be available for public viewing prior to and after the meeting at http://facadatabase.gov/committee/meetings.aspx?cid=255. Click on the “Meeting Details” and “Documents” links to download. Records generated from this meeting may also be inspected and reproduced at the Regional Programs Unit, as they become available, both before and after the meeting. Persons interested in the work of this Committee are directed to the Commission's Web site, http://www.usccr.gov, or may contact the Regional Programs Unit at the above email or street address.

    Agenda
    Welcome and Introductions Donna Budnick, Chair Review, Discussion and Approval of Project Proposal: Civil Rights Impact of Civil Forfeiture Practices in Michigan Future plans and actions Adjournment DATES:

    The meeting will be held on Monday, October 26, 2015, at 3:00 p.m. EST

    Public Call Information

    Dial: 888-461-2024

    Conference ID: 5095705

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Melissa Wojnaroski at [email protected] or 312-353-8311.

    Dated: July 31, 2015. David Mussatt, Chief, Regional Programs Unit.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19185 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6335-01-P
    COMMISSION ON CIVIL RIGHTS Notice of Public Meeting of the Hawai‘i State Advisory Committee for the Purpose of Holding a Public Meeting on the Civil Rights of Micronesians AGENCY:

    U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

    ACTION:

    Announcement of meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    Notice is hereby given, pursuant to the provisions of the rules and regulations of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights (Commission) and the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) that a meeting of the Hawai‘i State Advisory Committee (Committee) to the Commission will be held on Thursday, August 20, 2015, for the purpose of holding a public meeting on the civil rights of Micronesians. The meeting will be held at the Hawaii State Capitol Auditorium, 415 S. Beretania Street, Honolulu, HI 96813. The meeting is scheduled to begin at 9:30 a.m. and adjourn at approximately 5:00 p.m.

    Members of the public are entitled to make comments in the open period at the end of the meeting. Members of the public may also submit written comments. The comments must be received in the Western Regional Office of the Commission by September 20, 2015. The address is Western Regional Office, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, 300 N. Los Angeles Street, Suite 2010, Los Angeles, CA 90012. Persons wishing to email their comments may do so by sending them to Peter Minarik, Regional Director, Western Regional Office, at [email protected] Persons who desire additional information should contact the Western Regional Office, at (213) 894-3437, (or for hearing impaired TDD 913-551-1414), or by email to [email protected] Hearing-impaired persons who will attend the meeting and require the services of a sign language interpreter should contact the Regional Office at least ten (10) working days before the scheduled date of the meeting.

    Records and documents discussed during the meeting will be available for public viewing prior to and after the meeting at https://database.faca.gov/committee/meetings.aspx?cid=244 and clicking on the “Meeting Details” and “Documents” links. Records generated from this meeting may also be inspected and reproduced at the Western Regional Office, as they become available, both before and after the meeting. Persons interested in the work of this Committee are directed to the Commission's Web site, http://www.usccr.gov, or may contact the Western Regional Office at the above email or street address.

    Agenda Public meeting on the civil rights of Micronesians—9:30 a.m. Public comment—4:00 p.m. Adjournment—5:00 p.m.
    DATES:

    Thursday, August 20, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    The Hawai‘i State Capitol Auditorium, 415 S. Beretania Street, Honolulu, HI 96813.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Peter Minarik, DFO, at (213) 894-3437 or [email protected]

    Dated: July 31, 2015. David Mussatt, Chief, Regional Programs Coordination Unit.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19186 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6335-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [C-552-805] Polyethylene Retail Carrier Bags From the Socialist Republic of Vietnam: Final Results of Expedited First Sunset Review of the Countervailing Duty Order AGENCY:

    Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce (the Department) finds that revocation of the countervailing duty (CVD) order on polyethylene retail carrier bags (PRCBs) from the Socialist Republic of Vietnam (Vietnam) would be likely to lead to continuation or recurrence of countervailable subsidies at the levels indicated in the “Final Results of Sunset Review” section of this notice.

    DATES:

    Effective Date: August 5, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Jun Jack Zhao, AD/CVD Operations, Office VII, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20230; telephone (202) 482-1396.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    On May 4, 2010, the Department published the CVD order on PRCBs from Vietnam.1 On April 1, 2015, the Department published a notice of initiation of the first sunset review of the CVD Order on PRCBs from Vietnam, pursuant to section 751(c) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act).2

    1See Polyethylene Retail Carrier Bags from the Socialist Republic of Vietnam: Countervailing Duty Order, 75 FR 23670 (May 4, 2010) (CVD Order).

    2See Initiation of Five-Year (“Sunset”) Review, 80 FR 17388 (April 1, 2015).

    On April 16, 2015, the Polyethylene Retail Carrier Bag Committee (the Committee), an ad hoc association of five producers of the domestic like product, timely notified the Department of its intent to participate.3 The Committee is comprised of the following five domestic producers of PRCBs: Hilex Poly Co., LLC, Superbag Corporation, Unistar Plastics, LLC, Command Packaging, and Roplast Industries, Inc.

    3See Letter to the Department from the Committee, dated April 16, 2015.

    On May 1, 2015, the Department received a substantive response from the Committee within the 30-day deadline specified in 19 CFR 351.218(d)(3)(i).4 The Department did not receive substantive responses from any respondent interested party. As a result, pursuant to section 751(c)(3)(B) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.218(e)(1)(ii)(C)(2), the Department conducted an expedited (120-day) sunset review of the CVD order on PRCBs from Vietnam.

    4See Letter from the Committee to the Department, entitled “Five-Year (“Sunset”) Review Of Countervailing Duty Order On Polyethylene Retail Carrier Bags From The Socialist Republic Of Vietnam: Domestic Industry's Substantive Response,” dated May 1, 2015.

    Scope of the Order

    This order covers PRCBs. Imports of merchandise included within the scope of this order are currently classifiable under statistical category 3923.21.0085 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States. The Issues and Decision Memorandum, which is hereby adopted by this notice, provides a full description of the scope of the order.5

    5See “Issues and Decision Memorandum for the Final Results of the Expedited First Sunset Review of the Countervailing Duty Order on Polyethylene Retail Carrier Bags from the Socialist Republic Of Vietnam,” from Christian Marsh, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations, to Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance, dated concurrently with this notice (Issues and Decision Memorandum).

    The Issues and Decision Memorandum is a public document and is on file electronically via Enforcement and Compliance's Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Centralized Electronic Service System (ACCESS). ACCESS is available to registered users at http://access.trade.gov and in the Central Records Unit, room B8024 of the main Department of Commerce building. In addition, a complete version of the Issues and Decision Memorandum can be accessed at http://enforcement.trade.gov/frn/. The signed Issues and Decision Memorandum and the electronic version of the Issues and Decision Memorandum are identical in content.

    Analysis of Comments Received

    In the Issues and Decision Memorandum, we have addressed all issues that parties raised in this review. The issues include the likelihood of continuation or recurrence of countervailable subsidies and the net countervailable subsidies likely to prevail if the Department revoked the order.

    Final Results of Sunset Review

    Pursuant to sections 752(b)(1) and (3) of the Act, we determine that revocation of the CVD Order would be likely to lead to continuation or recurrence of countervailable subsidies at the following net countervailable subsidy rates:

    Exporter/manufacturer Net subsidy
  • rate
  • (percent) 6
  • Advance Polybag Co., Ltd 52.56 Fotai Vietnam Enterprise Corp. and Fotai Enterprise Corporation 5.28 All Others 5.28
    Administrative Protective Order

    This notice also serves as the only reminder to parties subject to administrative protective order (APO) of their responsibility concerning the return or destruction of proprietary information disclosed under APO in accordance with 19 CFR 351.305. Timely notification of the return or destruction of APO materials or conversion to judicial protective orders is hereby requested. Failure to comply with the regulations and terms of an APO is a violation which is subject to sanction.

    6 Chin Sheng Company, Ltd. was excluded from the order as the company received a de minimis rate in the original investigation.

    We are issuing and publishing the results and notice in accordance with sections 751(c), 752(b), and 777(i)(1) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.218.

    Dated: July 24, 2015. Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance. Appendix—List of Topics Discussed in the Issues and Decision Memorandum 1. Summary 2. Background 3. Scope of the Order 4. History of the Order 5. Discussion of the Issues a. Likelihood of Continuation or Recurrence of a Countervailable Subsidy b. Net Countervailable Subsidy Likely To Prevail 6. Nature of the Subsidies 7. Final Results of Sunset Review 8. Recommendation
    [FR Doc. 2015-19248 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-580-839] Certain Polyester Staple Fiber From the Republic of Korea: Rescission of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2014-2015 AGENCY:

    Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce (the Department) is rescinding the administrative review of the antidumping duty order on certain polyester staple fiber (PSF) from the Republic of Korea (Korea) for the period of review (POR) May 1, 2014, through April 30, 2015, based on the timely withdrawal of the request for review.

    DATES:

    Effective date: August 5, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Lana Nigro, AD/CVD Operations, Office I, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-1779.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    On May 1, 2015, the Department published the notice of opportunity to request an administrative review of the order on PSF from Korea for the period of review May 1, 2014, through April 30, 2015.1 On May 29, 2015, DAK Americas LLC and Auriga Polymers, Inc., the successor to Invista, S.a.r.L (collectively, the petitioners) requested that the Department conduct an administrative review of Huvis Corporation (Huvis) and Toray Chemical Korea, Inc (Toray).2 On June 1, 2015, Huvis requested an administrative review of its POR sales.3 On June 18, 2015, the petitioners withdrew their request for an administrative review of Huvis.4 Huvis withdrew its request for an administrative review on June 19, 2015.5 Pursuant to the remaining request, for Toray, and in accordance with 19 CFR 351.221(c)(1)(i), the Department published a notice initiating an administrative review solely of Toray.6 The petitioners withdrew their request for an administrative review of Toray on July 13, 2015.7

    1See Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Order, Finding, or Suspended Investigation; Opportunity to Request Administrative Review, 80 FR 24898, 24899 (May 1, 2015).

    2See Letter from the petitioners to the Department, dated May 29, 2015, at 2.

    3See Letter from Huvis to the Department, dated June 1, 2015, at 1-2.

    4See Letter from the petitioners, dated June 18, 2015, at 2.

    5See Letter from Huvis, dated June 19, 2015.

    6See Initiation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Administrative Reviews, 80 FR 37588, 36464 (July 1, 2015).

    7See Letter from the petitioners, dated July 13, 2015, at 2.

    Rescission of Review

    Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.213(d)(1), the Department will rescind an administrative review, in whole or in part, if the party or parties that requested a review withdraws the request within 90 days of the publication date of the notice of initiation of the requested review. As noted above, the petitioners withdrew their request for review of Toray within 90 days of the publication date of the notice of initiation. No other parties requested an administrative review of the order. Therefore, in accordance with 19 CFR 351.213(d)(1), we are rescinding this review in its entirety.

    Assessment

    The Department will instruct U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to assess antidumping duties on all appropriate entries of PSF from Korea. Antidumping duties shall be assessed at rates equal to the cash deposit of estimated antidumping duties required at the time of entry, or withdrawal from warehouse, for consumption in accordance with 19 CFR 351.212(c)(1)(i). The Department intends to issue appropriate assessment instructions to CBP 15 days after the date of publication of this notice of rescission of administrative review.

    Notifications

    This notice also serves as a final reminder to importers of their responsibility under 19 CFR 351.402(f)(2) to file a certificate regarding the reimbursement of antidumping duties prior to liquidation of the relevant entries during this review period. Failure to comply with this requirement could result in the presumption that reimbursement of antidumping duties occurred and the subsequent assessment of double antidumping duties.

    This notice also serves as a final reminder to parties subject to administrative protective order (APO) of their responsibility concerning the return or destruction of proprietary information disclosed under an APO in accordance with 19 CFR 351.305(a)(3). Timely written notification of the return or destruction of APO materials, or conversion to judicial protective order, is hereby requested. Failure to comply with the regulations and terms of an APO is a sanctionable violation.

    This notice is issued and published in accordance with sections 751(a)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended, and 19 CFR 351.213(d)(4).

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Christian Marsh, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19246 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-469-805] Stainless Steel Bar from Spain: Rescission of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2014-2015 AGENCY:

    Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce (the Department) is rescinding its administrative review of the antidumping duty order on stainless steel bar (SSB) from Spain for the period of review (POR) March 1, 2014, through February 28, 2015.

    DATES:

    Effective date: August 5, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Andre Gziryan or Minoo Hatten AD/CVD Operations Office I, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-2201 and (202) 482-1690, respectively.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    On March 2, 2015, the Department published a notice of opportunity to request an administrative review of the antidumping duty order on SSB from Spain for the POR.1 On March 31, 2015, the petitioners 2 requested an administrative review of the order with respect to Gerdau Aceros Especiales Europa, S.L. (Gerdau).3 On April 30, 2015, in accordance with section 751(a) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (Act) and 19 CFR 351.221(c)(1)(i), we initiated an administrative review of the order on SSB with respect to Gerdau.4 On July 13, 2015, the petitioners timely withdrew their request for an administrative review of Gerdau.5

    1See Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Order, Finding, or Suspended Investigation; Opportunity To Request Administrative Review, 80 FR 11161 (March 2, 2015).

    2 Carpenter Technology Corporation, Crucible Industries EEC, Electralloy, a Division of G.O. Carlson, Inc., North American Stainless, Universal Stainless & Alloy Products, Inc., and Valbruna Slater Stainless, Inc. (collectively, the petitioners)

    3See Letter from the petitioners to the Department, “Stainless Steel Bar from Spain; Petitioners' Request for 2014/2015 Administrative Review” (March 31, 2015).

    4See Initiation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Administrative Reviews, 80 FR 24233 (April 30, 2015).

    5See Letter from the petitioners to the Department, “Stainless Steel Bar from Spain: Petitioners' Withdrawal of Request for 2014/2015 Administrative Review” (July 13, 2015).

    Rescission of Review

    Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.213(d)(1), the Department will rescind an administrative review if a party that requested a review withdraws the request within 90 days of the date of publication of notice of initiation of the requested review. The petitioners withdrew their request for review within the 90-day time limit. Because no other party requested a review of Gerdau, we are rescinding this administrative review of the order on SSB from Spain.

    Assessment

    The Department will instruct U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to assess antidumping duties on all appropriate entries of SSB from Spain during the POR at rates equal to the cash deposit rate of estimated antidumping duties required at the time of entry, or withdrawal from warehouse, for consumption, in accordance with 19 CFR 351.212(c)(1)(i). The Department intends to issue appropriate assessment instructions to CBP 15 days after publication of this notice in the Federal Register.

    Notification to Importers

    This notice serves as a final reminder to importers of their responsibility under 19 CFR 351.402(f)(2) to file a certificate regarding the reimbursement of antidumping duties prior to liquidation of the relevant entries during this review period. Failure to comply with this requirement could result in the Department's presumption that reimbursement of antidumping duties occurred and the subsequent assessment of doubled antidumping duties.

    Notification Regarding Administrative Protective Order

    This notice also serves as a reminder to parties subject to administrative protective order (APO) of their responsibility concerning the disposition of proprietary information disclosed under APO in accordance with 19 CFR 351.305(a)(3). Timely written notification of the return or destruction of APO materials or conversion to judicial protective order is hereby requested. Failure to comply with the regulations and the terms of an APO is a sanctionable violation.

    This notice is issued and published in accordance with sections 751(a)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.213(d)(4).

    Dated: July 28, 2015. Christian Marsh, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19104 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-489-815] Light-Walled Rectangular Pipe and Tube From Turkey: Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2013-2014 AGENCY:

    Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce.

    SUMMARY:

    On April 22, 2015, the Department of Commerce (the Department) published the preliminary results of the administrative review of the antidumping duty order on light-walled rectangular pipe and tube from Turkey.1 The review covers ÇINAR Boru Profil Sanayi ve Ticaret A.Ş. (CINAR). The period of review (POR) is May 1, 2013, through April 30, 2014. We invited interested parties to comment on our Preliminary Results. CINAR submitted a case brief on May 22, 2015.2 Based on CINAR's comments, we made certain changes to our Preliminary Results. The final results are listed in the section entitled “Final Results of Review” below.

    1See Light-Walled Rectangular Pipe and Tube from Turkey; Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2013-2014, 80 FR 22475 (April 22, 2015) (Preliminary Results).

    2See letter from CINAR to the Secretary of Commerce entitled, “Case Brief of ÇINAR Boru Profil Sanayi ve Ticaret A.Ş. (“CINAR”) to the Preliminary Determination on the Administrative Review on Light-Walled Rectangular Pipe and Tube (LWRP) from Turkey,” dated May 22, 2015.

    DATES:

    Effective Date: August 5, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Mark Flessner or Robert M. James,AD/CVD Operations Office VI, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-6312 or (202) 482-0649, respectively.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    On April 22, 2015, the Department published the Preliminary Results of this review in the Federal Register. We invited parties to comment on the Preliminary Results. CINAR submitted a case brief. No other party submitted case or rebuttal briefs. No party requested a hearing.

    Scope of the Order

    The merchandise subject to this order 3 is certain welded carbon-quality light-walled steel pipe and tube, of rectangular (including square) cross section, having a wall thickness of less than 4 mm.4

    3See Notice of Antidumping Duty Order: Light-Walled Rectangular Pipe and Tube From Turkey, 73 FR 31065 (May 30, 2008).

    4 For a full description of the scope of the order, see the memorandum from Christian Marsh, Deputy Assistant Secretary for AD/CVD Operations, to Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance, entitled, “Issues and Decision Memorandum for the Final Results in the Antidumping Duty Administrative Review of Light-Walled Rectangular Pipe and Tube from Turkey; 2013-2014,” dated concurrently with this notice (Issues and Decision Memorandum).

    Analysis of Comments Received

    All issues raised in the case brief submitted in this review are addressed in the Issues and Decision Memorandum which is hereby adopted with this notice. A list of the issues raised is attached to this notice as Appendix I. The Issues and Decision Memorandum is a public document and is on file electronically via Enforcement and Compliance's Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Centralized Electronic Service System (ACCESS). ACCESS is available to registered users at http://iaaccess.trade.gov and it is available to all parties in the Central Records Unit, room B8024 of the main Department of Commerce building. In addition, a complete version of the Issues and Decision Memorandum can be accessed directly at http://enforcement.trade.gov/frn/index.html. The signed and electronic versions of the Issues and Decision Memorandum are identical in content.

    Changes Since the Preliminary Determination

    Based on our analysis of the comments received, we made certain changes to the Preliminary Results. For a discussion of these changes, see Issues and Decision Memorandum.

    Final Results of Review

    The estimated weighted-average dumping margin for the period May 1, 2013, through April 30, 2014, is as follows:

    Producer/exporter Weighted
  • average
  • margin
  • (percentage)
  • ÇINAR Boru Profil Sanayi ve Ticaret AŞ 0.00
    Assessment

    The Department shall determine, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) shall assess, antidumping duties on all appropriate entries, in accordance with 19 CFR 351.212(b)(1). The Department intends to issue appropriate assessment instructions for the companies subject to this review to CBP 15 days after the date of publication of these final results.

    CINAR's weighted-average dumping margin in these final results is zero percent. Therefore, we will instruct CBP to liquidate all appropriate entries without regard to antidumping duties.

    Cash Deposit Requirements

    The following deposit rates will be effective upon publication of the final results of this administrative review for all shipments of light-walled rectangular pipe and tube from Turkey entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after the publication date, as provided by section 751(a)(2)(C) of the Act: (1) For ÇINAR Boru Profil Sanayi ve Ticaret A.Ş., the cash deposit rate will be equal to the weighted-average dumping margin listed above; (2) for previously reviewed or investigated companies not listed above, the cash deposit rate will continue to be the company-specific rate published for the most recently completed segment of this proceeding in which that manufacturer or exporter participated; (3) if the exporter is not a firm covered in this review, a prior review, or the original LTFV investigation, but the producer is, the cash deposit rate will be the rate established for the most recently completed segment of this proceeding for the producer of the merchandise; and (4) if neither the exporter nor the producer is a firm covered in this review, any previous review, or the original investigation, the cash deposit rate will be 27.04 percent ad valorem, the “all others” rate established in the LTFV investigation. These cash deposit requirements, when imposed, shall remain in effect until further notice.

    Notification to Importers

    This notice serves as a final reminder to importers of their responsibility under 19 CFR 351.402(f)(2) to file a certificate regarding the reimbursement of antidumping duties prior to liquidation of the relevant entries during this review period. Failure to comply with this requirement could result in the Secretary's presumption that reimbursement of antidumping duties occurred and the subsequent assessment of double antidumping duties.

    Administrative Protective Order Notification to Interested Parties

    This notice serves as the only reminder to parties subject to administrative protective order (APO) of their responsibility concerning the disposition of proprietary information disclosed under APO in accordance with 19 CFR 351.305(a)(3), which continues to govern business proprietary information in this segment of the proceeding. Timely written notification of the return or destruction of APO materials or conversion to judicial protective order is hereby requested. Failure to comply with the regulations and the terms of an APO is a sanctionable violation.

    Notification to Interested Parties

    This administrative review and notice are issued and published in accordance with sections 751(a)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.213(h)(1).

    Dated: July 27, 2015. Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance. Appendix I—List of Issues Raised in Case and Rebuttal Briefs Summary Background Scope of the Order Discussion of the Issue Issue 1: Use of CINAR's Revised Home Market Data Base Conclusion
    [FR Doc. 2015-19095 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Institute of Standards and Technology [Docket No.: 130917811-5349-02] Announcing Approval of Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) 202, SHA-3 Standard: Permutation-Based Hash and Extendable-Output Functions, and Revision of the Applicability Clause of FIPS 180-4, Secure Hash Standard AGENCY:

    National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    This notice announces the Secretary of Commerce's approval of Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) 202, SHA-3 Standard: Permutation-Based Hash and Extendable-Output Functions, and a revision of the Applicability Clause of FIPS 180-4, Secure Hash Standard. FIPS 202 specifies the SHA-3 family of hash functions, as well as mechanisms for other cryptographic functions to be specified in the future. The revision to the Applicability Clause of FIPS 180-4 approves the use of hash functions specified in either FIPS 180-4 or FIPS 202 when a secure hash function is required for the protection of sensitive, unclassified information in Federal applications, including as a component within other cryptographic algorithms and protocols.

    DATES:

    FIPS 202 and FIPS 180-4 are effective on August 5, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ms. Shu-jen Chang, (301) 975-2940, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Mail Stop 8930, Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8930, email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    NIST announced the SHA-3 Cryptographic Hash Algorithm Competition in the Federal Register (72 FR 62212, available at https://federalregister.gov/a/E7-21581) on November 2, 2007. The purpose of the SHA-3 Competition was to develop a new cryptographic hash algorithm for standardization to augment the hash functions specified in FIPS 180-4, Secure Hash Standard. NIST announced the winning algorithm, Keccak, in a press release on October 2, 2012, which is available at http://www.nist.gov/itl/csd/sha-100212.cfm.

    NIST then developed Draft FIPS 202, SHA-3 Standard: Permutation-Based Hash and Extendable-Output Functions to specify Keccak for use in the Federal Government. On May 28, 2014, NIST announced Draft FIPS 202 in the Federal Register (79 FR 30549, available at https://federalregister.gov/a/2014-12336) and requested comments. In the same notice, NIST also proposed a revision of the Applicability Clause (#6) of the Announcement Section of FIPS 180-4, Secure Hash Standard, and requested comments. The revision of this clause allows the use of hash functions specified in either FIPS 180-4 or FIPS 202, modifying the original mandate to use only the hash functions specified in FIPS 180-4. The other sections of FIPS 180-4 remain unchanged. FIPS 202 and FIPS 180-4 are available at: http://csrc.nist.gov/publications/PubsFIPS.html.

    The May 28, 2014 notice solicited comments from the public. An announcement was also posted on a public hash forum ([email protected]) and on the NIST hash Web site (http://csrc.nist.gov/groups/ST/hash/sha-3/sha-3_standard_fips202.html). A ninety-day public comment period commenced on May 28, 2014, and ended on August 26, 2014.

    NIST received comments on Draft FIPS 202 from seven commenters: Two government agencies, two industry groups, and three individuals. In addition, NIST received one comment on the Draft Revision of the Applicability Clause of FIPS 180-4 from one individual, although this comment was not related to the revision of the specific clause for which NIST was requesting comments. All comments received are posted at http://csrc.nist.gov/groups/ST/hash/sha-3/fips-202-public-comments-aug2014.html. None of the comments opposed the adoption of the SHA-3 Standard or the revision of the Applicability Clause of FIPS 180-4. Some comments offered editorial suggestions, pointed out inconsistencies in the text, or suggested structural changes. All of the comments were carefully reviewed, and changes were made to FIPS 202, where appropriate. NIST made additional editorial changes to improve FIPS 202.

    The following section summarizes the comments received during the public comment period, and includes NIST's responses to each comment.

    Comment: One commenter submitted two editorial comments on Draft FIPS 202. The first comment was to replace “relatively small” with “sufficiently small” in the fourth footnote, on page 1. The second comment applied to an earlier draft of FIPS 202.

    Response: The first comment was accepted; the error that the second comment identified had already been corrected in the draft that was released for public comment.

    Comment: One commenter agreed with the inclusion of the Extendable-Output Functions in Draft FIPS 202, citing the TUAK algorithm—for authentication and key generation in mobile telephony—as a suitable application.

    Response: NIST acknowledges the comment. No change to the Standard was made as a result of the comment.

    Comment: Two commenters recommended a significant restructuring of Draft FIPS 202. One commenter's proposal was to emphasize the role of the Keccak-p permutation as a “primitive,” i.e., a fundamental cryptographic technique. This permutation family is the main component of each SHA-3 function. The comment included a detailed outline of the commenter's proposal. The other commenter's proposal was to replace FIPS 202 with three standards. The first standard would specify the Keccak[c] sponge functions as a distinct primitive, and the second and third standards would specify the SHA-3 hash functions and extendable-output functions, respectively, as instances of these sponge functions. For both commenters, the rationale for their proposals was to provide greater flexibility to extend the technology in the future.

    Response: The restructuring proposals were not accepted. The text in Section 7 on conformance already explicitly accommodates the possibility of developing new uses of the Keccak[c] sponge functions and other intermediate functions, as well as new functions based on the Keccak-p permutations. Moreover, the primary purpose of FIPS 202 is to standardize the winning algorithm from the SHA-3 competition. Both of the restructuring proposals would detract from the perception of the Standard as fulfilling that goal.

    Comment: One of the previous commenters also submitted several editorial comments and one general comment on Draft FIPS 202. The general comment suggested that hyphens be inserted into the names “SHAKE128” and “SHAKE256” in order to separate the numerical parameter, which would be consistent with the naming convention for the SHA-3 hash functions.

    Response: The editorial comments were accepted, with a modification to the suggested resolution in one case. In particular, the commenter observed that the following sentence in Section 3 could be clarified to distinguish between the input, which is fixed, and the state, which is mutable: “The set of values for the b-bit input to the permutation, as it undergoes successive applications of the step mappings, culminating in the output, is called the state.” The commenter suggested the following replacement: “The permutation, as it undergoes successive applications of the step mappings, maintains a b-bit state, which is initially set to the input values.” Instead, NIST revised the sentence as follows: “The permutation is specified in terms of an array of values for b bits that is repeatedly updated, called the state; the state is initially set to the input values of the permutation.” This revision is preferable because it retains an explicit definition of the term “state.” NIST did not include the change requested in the general comment. Although the stated rationale for the general comment is reasonable, it is preferable to omit the hyphens, as originally specified, in order to help distinguish the different roles of the parameters. In particular, the numerical suffixes in “SHAKE128” and “SHAKE256” indicate security strengths, while for the SHA-3 hash functions such as SHA3-256, the suffix indicates the digest length of the hash function.

    Comment: One commenter requested that FIPS 202 clarify how the SHA-3 hash functions would be implemented within the keyed-hash message authentication code (HMAC) that is specified in FIPS 198-1.

    Response: The comment was accepted and addressed with new text in the conformance section that identified the value of the HMAC parameter B for each of the SHA-3 hash functions.

    Comment: One commenter expressed appreciation for the opportunity to review Draft FIPS 202.

    Response: NIST acknowledges the comment. No change was made as a result of the comment.

    Comment: One commenter discussed the use of the extendable-output functions specified in Draft FIPS 202. The comment distinguished between two types of applications: (1) Variable-length hash functions, and (2) random-looking functions, such as key derivation functions (KDFs). The comment explained why variable-length hash functions were not very interesting from a cryptographic perspective, suggesting that NIST approval be limited to KDF-like functions. The comment also pointed out that the incorporation of the output length into the input for these functions could be specified as a method of addressing the prefix property that is discussed in the Standard.

    Response: The text in Section 7 on conformance explicitly asserts that approved uses of the extendable-output functions will be specified in NIST special publications. NIST will consider the commenter's suggestions in the development of those publications. Also, text was added to clarify that extendable-output functions are not yet approved as variable-length hash functions.

    Comment: The only comment on FIPS 180-4 recommended that the SHA-1 hash algorithm be excluded “due to highly untrusted security algorithm.”

    Response: NIST made no change based on this comment. The comment does not directly apply to the Revised Applicability Clause of FIPS 180-4, which simply acknowledges that FIPS 202 specifies valid options for secure hash functions. Moreover, NIST has already developed and adopted an appropriate policy for the use ofSHA-1, based on the latest security information, as described in NIST Special Publication 800-131A.

    The Secretary of Commerce hereby approves FIPS 202 and FIPS 180-4. Copies of FIPS 202 and FIPS 180-4 are available at: http://csrc.nist.gov/publications/PubsFIPS.html.

    Authority:

    In accordance with the Information Technology Management Reform Act of 1996 (Pub. L. 104-106) and the Federal Information Security Management Act of 2002 (FISMA) (Pub. L. 107-347), the Secretary of Commerce is authorized to approve FIPS. NIST activities to develop computer security standards to protect federal sensitive (unclassified) information systems are undertaken pursuant to specific responsibilities assigned to NIST by Section 20 of the National Institute of Standards and Technology Act (15 U.S.C. 278g-3), as amended.

    Richard R. Cavanagh, Acting Associate Director for Laboratory Programs.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19181 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XE074 Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Meeting of the Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Advisory Panel AGENCY:

    National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Notice of public meeting and webinar/conference call.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS will hold a 2-day Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Advisory Panel (AP) meeting in September 2015. The intent of the meeting is to consider options for the conservation and management of Atlantic HMS. The meeting is open to the public.

    DATES:

    The AP meeting and webinar will be held from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Wednesday, September 9, 2015; and from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Thursday, September 10, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting will be held at the Sheraton Silver Spring, 8777 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring, MD 20910. The meeting presentations will also be available via WebEx webinar/conference call.

    On Wednesday, September 9, 2015, the conference call information is phone number 1-800-857-6552; Participant Code: 8099565; and the webinar event address is: https://noaaevents2.webex.com/noaaevents2/onstage/g.php?d=393951018&t=a; event password: NOAA.

    On Thursday, September 10, 2015, the conference call information is phone number 1-800-857-6552; Participant Code: 8099565; and the webinar event address is: https://noaaevents2.webex.com/noaaevents2/onstage/g.php?d=395887510&t=a; event password: NOAA.

    Participants are strongly encouraged to log/dial in fifteen minutes prior to the meeting. NMFS will show the presentations via webinar and allow public comment during identified times on the agenda.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    LeAnn Hogan or Margo Schulze-Haugen at (301) 427-8503.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq., as amended by the Sustainable Fisheries Act, Public Law 104-297, provided for the establishment of an AP to assist in the collection and evaluation of information relevant to the development of any Fishery Management Plan (FMP) or FMP amendment for Atlantic HMS. NMFS consults with and considers the comments and views of AP members when preparing and implementing FMPs or FMP amendments for Atlantic tunas, swordfish, billfish, and sharks.

    The AP has previously consulted with NMFS on: Amendment 1 to the Billfish FMP (April 1999); the HMS FMP (April 1999); Amendment 1 to the HMS FMP (December 2003); the Consolidated HMS FMP (October 2006); and Amendments 1, 2, 3, 4, 5a, 5b, 6, 7, 8, and 9 to the 2006 Atlantic Consolidated HMS FMP (April and October 2008, February and September 2009, May and September 2010, April and September 2011, March and September 2012, January and September 2013, April and September 2014 and March 2015), among other things.

    The intent of this meeting is to consider alternatives for the conservation and management of all Atlantic tunas, swordfish, billfish, and shark fisheries. We anticipate discussing Final Amendment 6 to the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP on the future of shark fishery, providing updates on Amendment 5b on dusky shark management and Amendment 9 on smoothhound shark management, reviewing the results of the smoothhound shark stock assessment, discussing implementation of Final Amendment 7 on bluefin tuna management measures, as well as discussing the Final HMS Essential Fish Habitat 5-Year Review and next steps. The meeting will also include discussion of a survey of Atlantic HMS tournaments that is in development, and providing updates on various topics relevant to Atlantic HMS fisheries management.

    Additional information on the meeting and a copy of the draft agenda will be posted prior to the meeting at: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/sfa/hms/advisory_panels/hms_ap/meetings/ap_meetings.html.

    Special Accommodations

    This meeting is physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to LeAnn Hogan at (301) 427-8503 at least 7 days prior to the meeting.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19148 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XE056 Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to a Wharf Recapitalization Project AGENCY:

    National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Notice; proposed incidental harassment authorization; request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS has received a request from the U.S. Navy (Navy) for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to construction activities as part of a wharf recapitalization project. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting public comment on its proposal to issue an incidental harassment authorization (IHA) to the Navy to take, by Level B harassment only, during the specified activity.

    DATES:

    Comments and information must be received no later than September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments on this proposal should be addressed to Jolie Harrison, Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. Physical comments should be sent to 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910 and electronic comments should be sent to [email protected]

    Instructions: NMFS is not responsible for comments sent by any other method, to any other address or individual, or received after the end of the comment period. Comments received electronically, including all attachments, must not exceed a 25-megabyte file size. Attachments to electronic comments will be accepted in Microsoft Word or Excel or Adobe PDF file formats only. All comments received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted to the Internet at www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental/construction.htm without change. All personal identifying information (e.g., name, address) voluntarily submitted by the commenter may be publicly accessible. Do not submit confidential business information or otherwise sensitive or protected information.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ben Laws, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, (301) 427-8401.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Availability

    An electronic copy of the Navy's application and supporting documents, as well as a list of the references cited in this document, may be obtained by visiting the Internet at: www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental/construction.htm. In case of problems accessing these documents, please call the contact listed above.

    National Environmental Policy Act

    The Navy prepared an Environmental Assessment (EA; 2013) for this project. We subsequently adopted the EA and signed our own Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) prior to issuing the first IHA for this project, in accordance with NEPA and the regulations published by the Council on Environmental Quality. Information in the Navy's application, the Navy's EA, and this notice collectively provide the environmental information related to proposed issuance of this IHA for public review and comment. All documents are available at the aforementioned Web site. We will review all comments submitted in response to this notice as we complete the NEPA process, including a decision of whether to reaffirm the existing FONSI, prior to a final decision on the incidental take authorization request.

    Background

    Sections 101(a)(5)(A) and (D) of the MMPA (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.) direct the Secretary of Commerce to allow, upon request by U.S. citizens who engage in a specified activity (other than commercial fishing) within a specified area, the incidental, but not intentional, taking of small numbers of marine mammals, providing that certain findings are made and the necessary prescriptions are established.

    The incidental taking of small numbers of marine mammals may be allowed only if NMFS (through authority delegated by the Secretary) finds that the total taking by the specified activity during the specified time period will (i) have a negligible impact on the species or stock(s) and (ii) not have an unmitigable adverse impact on the availability of the species or stock(s) for subsistence uses (where relevant). Further, the permissible methods of taking and requirements pertaining to the mitigation, monitoring and reporting of such taking must be set forth, either in specific regulations or in an authorization.

    The allowance of such incidental taking under section 101(a)(5)(A), by harassment, serious injury, death, or a combination thereof, requires that regulations be established. Subsequently, a Letter of Authorization may be issued pursuant to the prescriptions established in such regulations, providing that the level of taking will be consistent with the findings made for the total taking allowable under the specific regulations. Under section 101(a)(5)(D), NMFS may authorize such incidental taking by harassment only, for periods of not more than one year, pursuant to requirements and conditions contained within an IHA. The establishment of prescriptions through either specific regulations or an authorization requires notice and opportunity for public comment.

    NMFS has defined “negligible impact” in 50 CFR 216.103 as “. . . an impact resulting from the specified activity that cannot be reasonably expected to, and is not reasonably likely to, adversely affect the species or stock through effects on annual rates of recruitment or survival.” Except with respect to certain activities not pertinent here, section 3(18) of the MMPA defines “harassment” as: “. . . any act of pursuit, torment, or annoyance which (i) has the potential to injure a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild [Level A harassment]; or (ii) has the potential to disturb a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild by causing disruption of behavioral patterns, including, but not limited to, migration, breathing, nursing, breeding, feeding, or sheltering [Level B harassment].”

    Summary of Request

    On January 28, 2015, we received a request from the Navy for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to pile driving in association with the Wharf C-2 recapitalization project at Naval Station Mayport, Florida (NSM). That request was modified on April 17 and the Navy submitted a revised version of the request on July 24, 2015, which we deemed adequate and complete. In-water work associated with the project is expected to be completed within the one-year timeframe of the proposed IHA, which would be valid for one year from the date of issuance.

    The use of both vibratory and impact pile driving is expected to produce underwater sound at levels that have the potential to result in behavioral harassment of marine mammals. Two species of marine mammal have the potential to be affected by the specified activities: Bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus truncatus) and Atlantic spotted dolphin (Stenella frontalis). These species may occur year-round in the action area. However, we have determined that incidental take of spotted dolphins is not reasonably likely and do not propose to authorize such take.

    This is expected to be the second and final year of in-water work associated with the Wharf C-2 project. This would be the second such IHA, if issued, following the IHA issued effective from September 1, 2014, through August 31, 2015 (78 FR 71566; November 29, 2013). Please note that the previous IHA was initially issued with effective dates from December 1, 2013, through November 30, 2014. However, no work was conducted during this period and the effective dates were changed to those stated above (79 FR 27863; May 15, 2014).

    Description of the Specified Activity Overview

    Wharf C-2 is a single level, general purpose berthing wharf constructed in 1960. The wharf is one of NSM's two primary deep-draft berths and is one of the primary ordnance handling wharfs. The wharf is a diaphragm steel sheet pile cell structure with a concrete apron, partial concrete encasement of the piling and an asphalt paved deck. The wharf is currently in poor condition due to advanced deterioration of the steel sheeting and lack of corrosion protection, and this structural deterioration has resulted in the institution of load restrictions within 60 ft of the wharf face. The purpose of this project is to complete necessary repairs to Wharf C-2. Please refer to Appendix A of the Navy's application for photos of existing damage and deterioration at the wharf, and to Appendix B for a contractor schematic of the project plan.

    Dates and Duration

    The total project was expected to require a maximum of fifty days of in-water vibratory pile driving work over a twelve-month period, with an additional twenty days of impact pile driving included in the specified activity as a contingency for a total of seventy days in-water pile driving. Based on work completed to date and in consideration of the number of piles yet to be driven and pile production rates to date, the Navy estimates that remaining work may require 47 days in total.

    Specific Geographic Region

    NSM is located in northeastern Florida, at the mouth of the St. Johns River and adjacent to the Atlantic Ocean (see Figures 2-1 and 2-2 of the Navy's application). The St. Johns River is the longest river in Florida, with the final 35 mi flowing through the city of Jacksonville. This portion of the river is significant for commercial shipping and military use. At the mouth of the river, near the action area, the Atlantic Ocean is the dominant influence and typical salinities are above 30 ppm. Outside the river mouth, in nearshore waters, moderate oceanic currents tend to flow southward parallel to the coast. Sea surface temperatures range from around 16 °C in winter to 28 °C in summer.

    The specific action area consists of the NSM turning basin, an area of approximately 2,000 by 3,000 ft containing ship berthing facilities at sixteen locations along wharves around the basin perimeter. The basin was constructed during the early 1940s by dredging the eastern part of Ribault Bay (at the mouth of the St. Johns River), with dredge material from the basin used to fill parts of the bay and other low-lying areas in order to elevate the land surface. The basin is currently maintained through regular dredging at a depth of 50 ft, with depths at the berths ranging from 30-50 ft. The turning basin, connected to the St. Johns River by a 500-ft-wide entrance channel, will largely contain sound produced by project activities, with the exception of sound propagating east into nearshore Atlantic waters through the entrance channel (see Figure 2-2 of the Navy's application). Wharf C-2 is located in the northeastern corner of the Mayport turning basin.

    Detailed Description of Activities

    In order to rehabilitate Wharf C-2, the Navy proposes to install a new steel king pile/sheet pile (SSP) bulkhead, consisting of large vertical king piles with paired steel sheet piles driven between and connected to the ends of the king piles. Over the course of the entire project, the Navy will install approximately 120 single sheet piles and 119 king piles (all steel) to support the bulkhead wall, as well as fifty polymeric (plastic) fender piles. The SSP wall is anchored at the top and filled behind the wall before a concrete cap is formed along the top and outside face to tie the entire structure together and provide a berthing surface for vessels. The new bulkhead will be designed for a fifty-year service life.

    Installation of approximately seventy percent of steel piles (84 of 120 sheet piles and 81 of 119 king piles) has been completed as of July 2015, and the Navy expects that all installation of steel piles may be complete by the expiration of the current IHA. However, we include here as a contingency the installation of 25 percent of steel piles in the event that there is a work stoppage or other unforeseen delay prior to expiration of the current IHA. All fifty plastic fender piles would be installed during the period of validity of the proposed IHA.

    All piles would be driven by vibratory hammer, although impact pile driving may be used as a contingency in cases when vibratory driving is not sufficient to reach the necessary depth. In the unlikely event that impact driving is required, either impact or vibratory driving could occur on a given day, but concurrent use of vibratory and impact drivers would not occur. Including the installation of 25 percent of steel piles as a contingency, the Navy estimates that 47 in-water work days may be required to complete pile driving activity, including ten days for vibratory driving of plastic piles, seventeen days for contingency vibratory driving of steel piles, and twenty days for contingency impact driving, if necessary.

    Description of Marine Mammals in the Area of the Specified Activity

    There are four marine mammal species which may inhabit or transit through the waters nearby NSM at the mouth of the St. Johns River and in nearby nearshore Atlantic waters. These include the bottlenose dolphin, Atlantic spotted dolphin, North Atlantic right whale (Eubalaena glacialis), and humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae). Multiple additional cetacean species occur in South Atlantic waters but would not be expected to occur in shallow nearshore waters of the action area. Table 1 lists the marine mammal species with expected potential for occurrence in the vicinity of NSM during the project timeframe and summarizes key information regarding stock status and abundance. Taxonomically, we follow Committee on Taxonomy (2014). Please see NMFS' Stock Assessment Reports (SAR), available at www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/sars, for more detailed accounts of these stocks' status and abundance. Please also refer to NMFS' Web site (www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/species/mammals) for generalized species accounts and to the Navy's Marine Resource Assessment for the Charleston/Jacksonville Operating Area, which documents and describes the marine resources that occur in Navy operating areas of the Southeast (DoN, 2008). The document is publicly available at www.navfac.navy.mil/products_and_services/ev/products_and_services/marine_resources/marine_resource_assessments.html (accessed July 16, 2015).

    In the species accounts provided here, we offer a brief introduction to the species and relevant stock as well as available information regarding population trends and threats, and describe any information regarding local occurrence. Multiple stocks of bottlenose dolphins may be present in the action area, either seasonally or year-round, and are described further below. We first address the two large whale species that may occur in the action area.

    Table 1—Marine Mammals Potentially Present in the Vicinity of NSM Species Stock ESA/MMPA
  • status;
  • strategic
  • (Y/N) 1
  • Stock abundance
  • (CV, Nmin, most recent abundance survey) 2
  • PBR 3 Annual
  • M/SI 4
  • Relative occurrence;
  • season of occurrence
  • Order Cetartiodactyla—Cetacea—Superfamily Mysticeti (baleen whales) Family Balaenidae North Atlantic right whale Western North Atlantic 5 E/D; Y 465 (n/a; 2013) 0.9 4.75 Rare inshore, regular near/offshore; Nov-Apr. Humpback whale Gulf of Maine E/D; Y 823 (n/a; 2008) 2.7 10.15 Rare; Fall-Spring. Superfamily Odontoceti (toothed whales, dolphins, and porpoises) Family Delphinidae Common bottlenose dolphin Western North Atlantic Offshore -; N 77,532 (0.4; 56,053; 2011) 561 45.1 Rare; year-round. Common bottlenose dolphin Western North Atlantic Coastal, Southern Migratory -/D; Y 9,173 (0.46; 6,326; 2010-11) 63 2.6-16.5 Possibly common; 8 Jan-Mar. Common bottlenose dolphin Western North Atlantic Coastal, Northern Florida -/D; Y 1,219 (0.67; 730; 2010-11).9 7 unk Possibly common; 8 year-round. Common bottlenose dolphin Jacksonville Estuarine System.6 -; Y 412 7 (0.06; unk; 1994-97) undet. unk Possibly common; 8 year-round. Atlantic spotted dolphin Western North Atlantic -; N 44,715 (0.43; 31,610; 2011) 316 0 Rare; year-round. 1 ESA status: Endangered (E), Threatened (T)/MMPA status: Depleted (D). A dash (-) indicates that the species is not listed under the ESA or designated as depleted under the MMPA. Under the MMPA, a strategic stock is one for which the level of direct human-caused mortality exceeds PBR (see footnote 3) or which is determined to be declining and likely to be listed under the ESA within the foreseeable future. Any species or stock listed under the ESA is automatically designated under the MMPA as depleted and as a strategic stock. 2 CV is coefficient of variation; Nmin is the minimum estimate of stock abundance. In some cases, CV is not applicable. For killer whales, the abundance values represent direct counts of individually identifiable animals; therefore there is only a single abundance estimate with no associated CV. For certain stocks, abundance estimates are actual counts of animals and there is no associated CV. The most recent abundance survey that is reflected in the abundance estimate is presented; there may be more recent surveys that have not yet been incorporated into the estimate. 3 Potential biological removal, defined by the MMPA as the maximum number of animals, not including natural mortalities, that may be removed from a marine mammal stock while allowing that stock to reach or maintain its optimum sustainable population size (OSP). 4 These values, found in NMFS' SARs, represent annual levels of human-caused mortality plus serious injury from all sources combined (e.g., commercial fisheries, subsistence hunting, ship strike). Annual M/SI often cannot be determined precisely and is in some cases presented as a minimum value. All values presented here are from the draft 2014 SARs (www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/sars/draft.htm). 5 Abundance estimates (and resulting PBR values) for these stocks are new values presented in the draft 2014 SARs. This information was made available for public comment and is currently under review and therefore may be revised prior to finalizing the 2014 SARs. However, we consider this information to be the best available for use in this document. 6 Abundance estimates for these stocks are greater than eight years old and are therefore not considered current. PBR is considered undetermined for these stocks, as there is no current minimum abundance estimate for use in calculation. We nevertheless present the most recent abundance estimates and PBR values, as these represent the best available information for use in this document. 7 This abundance estimate is considered an overestimate because it includes non- and seasonally-resident animals. 8 Bottlenose dolphins in general are common in the project area, but it is not possible to readily identify them to stock. Therefore, these three stocks are listed as possibly common as we have no information about which stock commonly only occurs.

    Right whales occur in sub-polar to temperate waters in all major ocean basins in the world with a clear migratory pattern, occurring in high latitudes in summer (feeding) and lower latitudes in winter (breeding). North Atlantic right whales exhibit extensive migratory patterns, traveling along the eastern seaboard from calving grounds off Georgia and northern Florida to northern feeding areas off of the northeast U.S. and Canada in March/April and returning in November/December. Migrations are typically within 30 nmi of the coastline and in waters less than 50 m deep. Although this migratory pattern is well-known, winter distribution for most of the population—the non-calving portion—is poorly known, as many whales are not observed on the calving grounds. It is unknown where these animals spend the winter, although they may occur further offshore or may remain on foraging grounds during winter (Morano et al., 2012). During the winter calving period, right whales occur regularly in offshore waters of northeastern Florida. Critical habitat for right whales in the southeast (as identified under the ESA) is designated to protect calving grounds, and encompasses waters from the coast out to 15 nmi offshore from Mayport. More rarely, right whales have been observed entering the mouth of the St. Johns River for brief periods of time (Schweitzer and Zoodsma, 2011). Right whales are not present in the region outside of the winter calving season.

    Humpback whales are a cosmopolitan species that migrate seasonally between warm-water (tropical or sub-tropical) breeding and calving areas in winter months and cool-water (temperate to sub-Arctic/Antarctic) feeding areas in summer months (Gendron and Urban, 1993). They tend to occupy shallow, coastal waters, although migrations are undertaken through deep, pelagic waters. In the North Atlantic, humpback whales are known to aggregate in six summer feeding areas representing relatively discrete subpopulations (Clapham and Mayo, 1987), which share common wintering grounds in the Caribbean (and to a lesser extent off of West Africa) (Winn et al., 1975; Mattila et al., 1994; Palsbøll et al., 1997; Smith et al., 1999; Stevick et al., 2003; Cerchio et al., 2010). These populations or aggregations range from the Gulf of Maine in the west to Norway in the east, and the migratory range includes the east coast of the U.S. and Canada. The only managed stock in U.S. waters is the Gulf of Maine feeding aggregation, although other stocks occur in Canadian waters (e.g., Gulf of St. Lawrence feeding aggregation), and it is possible that whales from other stocks could occur in U.S. waters. Significant numbers of whales do remain in mid- to high-latitude waters during the winter months (Clapham et al., 1993; Swingle et al., 1993), and there have been a number of humpback sightings in coastal waters of the southeastern U.S. during the winter (Wiley et al., 1995; Laerm et al., 1997; Waring et al., 2014). According to Waring et al. (2014), it is unclear whether the increased numbers of sightings represent a distributional change, or are simply due to an increase in sighting effort and/or whale abundance. These factors aside, the humpback whale remains relatively rare in U.S. coastal waters south of the mid-Atlantic region, and is considered rare to extralimital in the action area. Any occurrences in the region would be expected in fall, winter, and spring during migration, as whales are unlikely to occur so far south during the summer feeding season.

    Neither the humpback whale nor the right whale would occur within the turning basin, and only the right whale has been observed to occur as far inshore as the mouth of the St. Johns River. Therefore, the only potential for interaction with these species is likely to be within the narrow sliver of ensonified area expected to extend eastward from the entrance channel during vibratory driving of steel piles (see Figure 6-1 of the application). As described above, humpback whales are considered rare in the region, and, when considering frequency of occurrence, size of ensonified area (approximately 2.9 km2 during vibratory driving of steel piles but less than one square kilometer during vibratory driving of plastic piles), and duration (likely ten days, but no greater than approximately fifty days), we consider the possibility for harassment of humpback whales to be discountable. For right whales, due to the greater potential for interaction during the calving season we considered available density information, including abundance data from NMFS surveys, as analyzed for use in Navy environmental compliance efforts (Roberts et al., 2015), to produce a representative estimate for the specific action area. Use of this estimate (0.045028/km2) resulted in zero estimated exposures of right whales to sound produced by project activities. Therefore, the humpback whale and right whale are excluded from further analysis and are not discussed further in this document.

    The following summarizes the population status and abundance of the remaining species.

    Bottlenose Dolphin

    Bottlenose dolphins are found worldwide in tropical to temperate waters and can be found in all depths from estuarine inshore to deep offshore waters. Temperature appears to limit the range of the species, either directly, or indirectly, for example, through distribution of prey. Off North American coasts, common bottlenose dolphins are found where surface water temperatures range from about 10 °C to 32 °C. In many regions, including the southeastern U.S., separate coastal and offshore populations are known. There is significant genetic, morphological, and hematological differentiation evident between the two ecotypes (e.g., Walker, 1981; Duffield et al., 1983; Duffield, 1987; Hoelzel et al., 1998), which correspond to shallow, warm water and deep, cold water. Both ecotypes have been shown to inhabit the western North Atlantic (Hersh and Duffield, 1990; Mead and Potter, 1995), where the deep-water ecotype tends to be larger and darker. In addition, several lines of evidence, including photo-identification and genetic studies, support a distinction between dolphins inhabiting coastal waters near the shore and those present in the inshore waters of bays, sounds and estuaries. This complex differentiation of bottlenose dolphin populations is observed throughout the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coasts where bottlenose dolphins are found, although estuarine populations have not been fully defined.

    In the Mayport area, four stocks of bottlenose dolphins are currently managed, none of which are protected under the ESA. Of the four stocks—offshore, southern migratory coastal, northern Florida coastal, and Jacksonville estuarine system—only the latter three are likely to occur in the action area. Bottlenose dolphins typically occur in groups of 2-15 individuals (Shane et al., 1986; Kerr et al., 2005). Although significantly larger groups have also been reported, smaller groups are typical of shallow, confined waters. In addition, such waters typically support some degree of regional site fidelity and limited movement patterns (Shane et al., 1986; Wells et al., 1987). Observations made during marine mammal surveys conducted during 2012-2013 in the Mayport turning basin show bottlenose dolphins typically occurring individually or in pairs, or less frequently in larger groups. The maximum observed group size during these surveys is six, while the mode is one. Navy observations indicate that bottlenose dolphins rarely linger in a particular area in the turning basin, but rather appear to move purposefully through the basin and then leave, which likely reflects a lack of any regular foraging opportunities or habitat characteristics of any importance in the basin. Based on currently available information, it is not possible to determine which stock dolphins occurring in the action area may belong to. These stocks are described in greater detail below.

    Western North Atlantic Offshore—This stock, consisting of the deep-water ecotype or offshore form of bottlenose dolphin in the western North Atlantic, is distributed primarily along the outer continental shelf and continental slope, but has been documented to occur relatively close to shore (Waring et al., 2014). The separation between offshore and coastal morphotypes varies depending on location and season, with the ranges overlapping to some degree south of Cape Hatteras. Based on genetic analysis, Torres et al. (2003) found a distributional break at 34 km from shore, with the offshore form found exclusively seaward of 34 km and in waters deeper than 34 m. Within 7.5 km of shore, all animals were of the coastal morphotype. More recently, coastwide, systematic biopsy collection surveys were conducted during the summer and winter to evaluate the degree of spatial overlap between the two morphotypes. South of Cape Hatteras, spatial overlap was found although the probability of a sampled group being from the offshore morphotype increased with increasing depth, and the closest distance for offshore animals was 7.3 km from shore, in water depths of 13 m just south of Cape Lookout (Garrison et al., 2003). The maximum radial distance for the largest ZOI is approximately 7.4 km (Table 3); therefore, while possible, it is unlikely that any individuals of the offshore morphotype would be affected by project activities. In terms of water depth, the affected area is generally in the range of the shallower depth reported for offshore dolphins by Garrison et al. (2003), but is far shallower than the depths reported by Torres et al. (2003). South of Cape Lookout, the zone of spatial overlap between offshore and coastal ecotypes is generally considered to occur in water depths between 20-100 m (Waring et al., 2014), which is generally deeper than waters in the action area. This stock is thus excluded from further analysis.

    Western North Atlantic Coastal, Southern Migratory—The coastal morphotype of bottlenose dolphin is continuously distributed from the Gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic and north approximately to Long Island (Waring et al., 2014). On the Atlantic coast, Scott et al. (1988) hypothesized a single coastal stock, citing stranding patterns during a high mortality event in 1987-88 and observed density patterns. More recent studies demonstrate that there is instead a complex mosaic of stocks (Zolman, 2002; McLellan et al., 2003; Rosel et al., 2009). The coastal morphotype was managed by NMFS as a single stock until 2009, when it was split into five separate stocks, including northern and southern migratory stocks. The original, single stock of coastal dolphins recognized from 1995-2001 was listed as depleted under the MMPA as a result of a 1987-88 mortality event. That designation was retained when the single stock was split into multiple coastal stocks. Therefore, all coastal stocks of bottlenose dolphins are listed as depleted under the MMPA, and are also considered strategic stocks.

    According to the Scott et al. (1988) hypothesis, a single stock was thought to migrate seasonally between New Jersey (summer) and central Florida (winter). Instead, it was determined that a mix of resident and migratory stocks exists, with the migratory movements and spatial distribution of the southern migratory stock the most poorly understood of these. Stable isotope analysis and telemetry studies provide evidence for seasonal movements of dolphins between North Carolina and northern Florida (Knoff, 2004; Waring et al., 2014), and genetic analyses and tagging studies support differentiation of northern and southern migratory stocks (Rosel et al., 2009; Waring et al., 2014). Although there is significant uncertainty regarding the southern migratory stock's spatial movements, telemetry data indicates that the stock occupies waters of southern North Carolina (south of Cape Lookout) during the fall (October-December). In winter months (January-March), the stock moves as far south as northern Florida where it overlaps spatially with the northern Florida coastal and Jacksonville estuarine system stocks. In spring (April-June), the stock returns north to waters of North Carolina, and is presumed to remain north of Cape Lookout during the summer months. Therefore, the potential exists for harassment of southern migratory dolphins, most likely during the winter only.

    Bottlenose dolphins are ubiquitous in coastal waters from the mid-Atlantic through the Gulf of Mexico, and therefore interact with multiple coastal fisheries, including gillnet, trawl, and trap/pot fisheries. Stock-specific total fishery-related mortality and serious injury cannot be directly estimated because of the spatial overlap among stocks of bottlenose dolphins, as well as because of unobserved fisheries. The primary known source of fishery mortality for the southern migratory stock is the mid-Atlantic gillnet fishery (Waring et al., 2014). Between 2004 and 2008, 588 bottlenose dolphins stranded along the Atlantic coast between Florida and Maryland that could potentially be assigned to the southern migratory stock, although the assignment of animals to a particular stock is impossible in some seasons and regions due to spatial overlap amongst stocks (Waring et al., 2014). Many of these animals exhibited some evidence of human interaction, such as line/net marks, gunshot wounds, or vessel strike. In addition, nearshore and estuarine habitats occupied by the coastal morphotype are adjacent to areas of high human population and some are highly industrialized. It should also be noted that stranding data underestimate the extent of fishery-related mortality and serious injury because not all of the marine mammals that die or are seriously injured in fishery interactions are discovered, reported or investigated, nor will all of those that are found necessarily show signs of entanglement or other fishery interaction. The level of technical expertise among stranding network personnel varies widely as does the ability to recognize signs of fishery interactions. Finally, multiple resident populations of bottlenose dolphins have been shown to have high concentrations of organic pollutants (e.g., Kuehl et al., 1991) and, despite little study of contaminant loads in migrating coastal dolphins, exposure to environmental pollutants and subsequent effects on population health is an area of concern and active research.

    Western North Atlantic Coastal, Northern Florida—Please see above for description of the differences between coastal and offshore ecotypes and the delineation of coastal dolphins into management stocks. The northern Florida coastal stock is one of five stocks of coastal dolphins and one of three known resident stocks (other resident stocks include South Carolina/Georgia and central Florida dolphins). The spatial extent of these stocks, their potential seasonal movements, and their relationships with estuarine stocks are poorly understood. During summer months, when the migratory stocks are known to be in North Carolina waters and further north, bottlenose dolphins are still seen in coastal waters of South Carolina, Georgia and Florida, indicating the presence of additional stocks of coastal animals. Speakman et al. (2006) documented dolphins in coastal waters off Charleston, South Carolina, that are not known resident members of the estuarine stock, and genetic analyses indicate significant differences between coastal dolphins from northern Florida, Georgia and central South Carolina (NMFS, 2001; Rosel et al., 2009). The northern Florida stock is thought to be present from approximately the Georgia-Florida border south to 29.4° N.

    The northern Florida coastal stock is susceptible to interactions with similar fisheries as those described above for the southern migratory stock, including gillnet, trawl, and trap/pot fisheries. From 2004-08, 78 stranded dolphins were recovered in northern Florida waters, although it was not possible to determine whether there was evidence of human interaction for the majority of these (Waring et al., 2014). The same concerns discussed above regarding underestimation of mortality hold for this stock and, as for southern migratory dolphins, pollutant loading is a concern.

    Jacksonville Estuarine System—Please see above for description of the differences between coastal and offshore ecotypes and the delineation of coastal dolphins into management stocks primarily inhabiting nearshore waters. The coastal morphotype of bottlenose dolphin is also resident to certain inshore estuarine waters (Caldwell, 2001; Gubbins, 2002; Zolman, 2002; Gubbins et al., 2003). Multiple lines of evidence support demographic separation between coastal dolphins found in nearshore waters and those in estuarine waters, as well as between dolphins residing within estuaries along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts (e.g., Wells et al., 1987; Scott et al., 1990; Wells et al., 1996; Cortese, 2000; Zolman, 2002; Speakman, et al. 2006; Stolen et al., 2007; Balmer et al., 2008; Mazzoil et al., 2008). In particular, a study conducted near Jacksonville demonstrated significant genetic differences between coastal and estuarine dolphins (Caldwell, 2001; Rosel et al., 2009). Despite evidence for genetic differentiation between estuarine and nearshore populations, the degree of spatial overlap between these populations remains unclear. Photo-identification studies within estuaries demonstrate seasonal immigration and emigration and the presence of transient animals (e.g., Speakman et al., 2006). In addition, the degree of movement of resident estuarine animals into coastal waters on seasonal or shorter time scales is poorly understood (Waring et al., 2014).

    The Jacksonville estuarine system (JES) stock has been defined as separate primarily by the results of photo-identification and genetic studies. The stock range is considered to be bounded in the north by the Georgia-Florida border at Cumberland Sound, extending south to approximately Jacksonville Beach, Florida. This encompasses an area defined during a photo-identification study of bottlenose dolphin residency patterns in the area (Caldwell, 2001), and the borders are subject to change upon further study of dolphin residency patterns in estuarine waters of southern Georgia and northern/central Florida. The habitat is comprised of several large brackish rivers, including the St. Johns River, as well as tidal marshes and shallow riverine systems. Three behaviorally different communities were identified during Caldwell's (2001) study: The estuarine waters north (Northern) and south (Southern) of the St. Johns River and the coastal area, all of which differed in density, habitat fidelity and social affiliation patterns. The coastal dolphins are believed to be members of a coastal stock, however (Waring et al., 2014). Although Northern and Southern members of the JES stock show strong site fidelity, members of both groups have been observed outside their preferred areas. Dolphins residing within estuaries south of Jacksonville Beach down to the northern boundary of the Indian River Lagoon Estuarine System (IRLES) stock are currently not included in any stock, as there are insufficient data to determine whether animals in this area exhibit affiliation to the JES stock, the IRLES stock, or are simply transient animals associated with coastal stocks. Further research is needed to establish affinities of dolphins in the area between the ranges, as currently understood, of the JES and IRLES stocks.

    The JES stock is susceptible to similar fisheries interactions as those described above for coastal stocks, although only trap/pot fisheries are likely to occur in estuarine waters frequented by the stock. Only one dolphin carcass bearing evidence of fisheries interaction was recovered during 2003-07 in the JES area, and an additional sixteen stranded dolphins were recovered during this time, but no determinations regarding human interactions could be made for the majority (Waring et al., 2014). The same concerns discussed above regarding underestimation of mortality hold for this stock and, as for stocks discussed above, pollutant loading is a concern. Although no contaminant analyses have yet been conducted in this area, the JES stock inhabits areas with significant drainage from industrial and urban sources, and as such is exposed to contaminants in runoff from these. In other estuarine areas where such analyses have been conducted, exposure to anthropogenic contaminants has been found to likely have an effect (Hansen et al. 2004; Schwacke et al., 2004; Reif et al., 2008).

    The original, single stock of coastal dolphins recognized from 1995-2001 was listed as depleted under the MMPA as a result of a 1987-88 mortality event. That designation was retained when the single stock was split into multiple coastal stocks. However, Scott et al. (1988) suggested that dolphins residing in the bays, sounds and estuaries adjacent to these coastal waters were not affected by the mortality event and these animals were explicitly excluded from the depleted listing (Waring et al., 2014). Gubbins et al. (2003), using data from Caldwell (2001), estimated the stock size to be 412 (CV = 0.06). However, NMFS considers abundance unknown because this estimate likely includes an unknown number of non-resident and seasonally-resident dolphins. It nevertheless represents the best available information regarding stock size. Because the stock size is likely small, and relatively few mortalities and serious injuries would exceed PBR, the stock is considered to be a strategic stock (Waring et al., 2014).

    Atlantic Spotted Dolphin

    Atlantic spotted dolphins are distributed in tropical and warm temperate waters of the western North Atlantic predominantly over the continental shelf and upper slope, from southern New England through the Gulf of Mexico (Leatherwood et al., 1976). Spotted dolphins in the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico are managed as separate stocks. The Atlantic spotted dolphin occurs in two forms which may be distinct sub-species (Perrin et al., 1987; Rice, 1998); a larger, more heavily spotted form inhabits the continental shelf inside or near the 200-m isobath and is the only form that would be expected to occur in the action area. Although typically observed in deeper waters, spotted dolphins of the western North Atlantic stock do occur regularly in nearshore waters south of the Chesapeake Bay (Mullin and Fulling, 2003). Specific data regarding seasonal occurrence in the region of activity is lacking, but higher numbers of individuals have been reported to occur in nearshore waters of the Gulf of Mexico from November to May, suggesting seasonal migration patterns (Griffin and Griffin, 2003).

    Potential Effects of the Specified Activity on Marine Mammals

    This section includes a summary and discussion of the ways that components of the specified activity may impact marine mammals. This discussion also includes reactions that we consider to rise to the level of a take and those that we do not consider to rise to the level of a take (for example, with acoustics, we may include a discussion of studies that showed animals not reacting at all to sound or exhibiting barely measurable avoidance). This section is intended as a background of potential effects and does not consider either the specific manner in which this activity will be carried out or the mitigation that will be implemented, and how either of those will shape the anticipated impacts from this specific activity. The Estimated Take by Incidental Harassment section later in this document will include a quantitative analysis of the number of individuals that are expected to be taken by this activity. The Negligible Impact Analyses section will include the analysis of how this specific activity will impact marine mammals and will consider the content of this section, the Estimated Take by Incidental Harassment section, the Proposed Mitigation section, and the Anticipated Effects on Marine Mammal Habitat section to draw conclusions regarding the likely impacts of this activity on the reproductive success or survivorship of individuals and from that on the affected marine mammal populations or stocks. In the following discussion, we provide general background information on sound and marine mammal hearing before considering potential effects to marine mammals from sound produced by vibratory and impact pile driving.

    Description of Sound Sources

    Sound travels in waves, the basic components of which are frequency, wavelength, velocity, and amplitude. Frequency is the number of pressure waves that pass by a reference point per unit of time and is measured in hertz (Hz) or cycles per second. Wavelength is the distance between two peaks of a sound wave; lower frequency sounds have longer wavelengths than higher frequency sounds and attenuate (decrease) more rapidly in shallower water. Amplitude is the height of the sound pressure wave or the `loudness' of a sound and is typically measured using the decibel (dB) scale. A dB is the ratio between a measured pressure (with sound) and a reference pressure (sound at a constant pressure, established by scientific standards). It is a logarithmic unit that accounts for large variations in amplitude; therefore, relatively small changes in dB ratings correspond to large changes in sound pressure. When referring to sound pressure levels (SPLs; the sound force per unit area), sound is referenced in the context of underwater sound pressure to 1 muPascal (μPa). One pascal is the pressure resulting from a force of one newton exerted over an area of one square meter. The source level (SL) represents the sound level at a distance of 1 m from the source (referenced to 1 μPa). The received level is the sound level at the listener's position. Note that all underwater sound levels in this document are referenced to a pressure of 1 μPa and all airborne sound levels in this document are referenced to a pressure of 20 μPa.

    Root mean square (rms) is the quadratic mean sound pressure over the duration of an impulse. Rms is calculated by squaring all of the sound amplitudes, averaging the squares, and then taking the square root of the average (Urick, 1983). Rms accounts for both positive and negative values; squaring the pressures makes all values positive so that they may be accounted for in the summation of pressure levels (Hastings and Popper, 2005). This measurement is often used in the context of discussing behavioral effects, in part because behavioral effects, which often result from auditory cues, may be better expressed through averaged units than by peak pressures.

    When underwater objects vibrate or activity occurs, sound-pressure waves are created. These waves alternately compress and decompress the water as the sound wave travels. Underwater sound waves radiate in all directions away from the source (similar to ripples on the surface of a pond), except in cases where the source is directional. The compressions and decompressions associated with sound waves are detected as changes in pressure by aquatic life and man-made sound receptors such as hydrophones.

    Even in the absence of sound from the specified activity, the underwater environment is typically loud due to ambient sound. Ambient sound is defined as environmental background sound levels lacking a single source or point (Richardson et al., 1995), and the sound level of a region is defined by the total acoustical energy being generated by known and unknown sources. These sources may include physical (e.g., waves, earthquakes, ice, atmospheric sound), biological (e.g., sounds produced by marine mammals, fish, and invertebrates), and anthropogenic sound (e.g., vessels, dredging, aircraft, construction). A number of sources contribute to ambient sound, including the following (Richardson et al., 1995):

    • Wind and waves: The complex interactions between wind and water surface, including processes such as breaking waves and wave-induced bubble oscillations and cavitation, are a main source of naturally occurring ambient noise for frequencies between 200 Hz and 50 kHz (Mitson, 1995). In general, ambient sound levels tend to increase with increasing wind speed and wave height. Surf noise becomes important near shore, with measurements collected at a distance of 8.5 km from shore showing an increase of 10 dB in the 100 to 700 Hz band during heavy surf conditions.

    Precipitation: Sound from rain and hail impacting the water surface can become an important component of total noise at frequencies above 500 Hz, and possibly down to 100 Hz during quiet times.

    Biological: Marine mammals can contribute significantly to ambient noise levels, as can some fish and shrimp. The frequency band for biological contributions is from approximately 12 Hz to over 100 kHz.

    Anthropogenic: Sources of ambient noise related to human activity include transportation (surface vessels and aircraft), dredging and construction, oil and gas drilling and production, seismic surveys, sonar, explosions, and ocean acoustic studies. Shipping noise typically dominates the total ambient noise for frequencies between 20 and 300 Hz. In general, the frequencies of anthropogenic sounds are below 1 kHz and, if higher frequency sound levels are created, they attenuate rapidly (Richardson et al., 1995). Sound from identifiable anthropogenic sources other than the activity of interest (e.g., a passing vessel) is sometimes termed background sound, as opposed to ambient sound.

    The sum of the various natural and anthropogenic sound sources at any given location and time—which comprise “ambient” or “background” sound—depends not only on the source levels (as determined by current weather conditions and levels of biological and shipping activity) but also on the ability of sound to propagate through the environment. In turn, sound propagation is dependent on the spatially and temporally varying properties of the water column and sea floor, and is frequency-dependent. As a result of the dependence on a large number of varying factors, ambient sound levels can be expected to vary widely over both coarse and fine spatial and temporal scales. Sound levels at a given frequency and location can vary by 10-20 dB from day to day (Richardson et al., 1995). The result is that, depending on the source type and its intensity, sound from the specified activity may be a negligible addition to the local environment or could form a distinctive signal that may affect marine mammals.

    The underwater acoustic environment in the Mayport turning basin is likely to be dominated by noise from day-to-day port and vessel activities. The basin is sheltered from most wave noise, but is a high-use area for naval ships, tugboats, and security vessels. When underway, these sources can create noise between 20 Hz and 16 kHz (Lesage et al., 1999), with broadband noise levels up to 180 dB. While there are no current measurements of ambient noise levels in the turning basin, it is likely that levels within the basin periodically exceed the 120 dB threshold and, therefore, that the high levels of anthropogenic activity in the basin create an environment far different from quieter habitats where behavioral reactions to sounds around the 120 dB threshold have been observed (e.g., Malme et al., 1984, 1988).

    In-water construction activities associated with the project would include impact pile driving and vibratory pile driving. The sounds produced by these activities fall into one of two general sound types: Pulsed and non-pulsed (defined in the following). The distinction between these two sound types is important because they have differing potential to cause physical effects, particularly with regard to hearing (e.g., Ward, 1997 in Southall et al., 2007). Please see Southall et al., (2007) for an in-depth discussion of these concepts.

    Pulsed sound sources (e.g., explosions, gunshots, sonic booms, impact pile driving) produce signals that are brief (typically considered to be less than one second), broadband, atonal transients (ANSI, 1986; Harris, 1998; NIOSH, 1998; ISO, 2003; ANSI, 2005) and occur either as isolated events or repeated in some succession. Pulsed sounds are all characterized by a relatively rapid rise from ambient pressure to a maximal pressure value followed by a rapid decay period that may include a period of diminishing, oscillating maximal and minimal pressures, and generally have an increased capacity to induce physical injury as compared with sounds that lack these features.

    Non-pulsed sounds can be tonal, narrowband, or broadband, brief or prolonged, and may be either continuous or non-continuous (ANSI, 1995; NIOSH, 1998). Some of these non-pulsed sounds can be transient signals of short duration but without the essential properties of pulses (e.g., rapid rise time). Examples of non-pulsed sounds include those produced by vessels, aircraft, machinery operations such as drilling or dredging, vibratory pile driving, and active sonar systems (such as those used by the U.S. Navy). The duration of such sounds, as received at a distance, can be greatly extended in a highly reverberant environment.

    Impact hammers operate by repeatedly dropping a heavy piston onto a pile to drive the pile into the substrate. Sound generated by impact hammers is characterized by rapid rise times and high peak levels, a potentially injurious combination (Hastings and Popper, 2005). Vibratory hammers install piles by vibrating them and allowing the weight of the hammer to push them into the sediment. Vibratory hammers produce significantly less sound than impact hammers. Peak SPLs may be 180 dB or greater, but are generally 10 to 20 dB lower than SPLs generated during impact pile driving of the same-sized pile (Oestman et al., 2009). Rise time is slower, reducing the probability and severity of injury, and sound energy is distributed over a greater amount of time (Nedwell and Edwards, 2002; Carlson et al., 2005).

    Marine Mammal Hearing

    Hearing is the most important sensory modality for marine mammals, and exposure to sound can have deleterious effects. To appropriately assess these potential effects, it is necessary to understand the frequency ranges marine mammals are able to hear. Current data indicate that not all marine mammal species have equal hearing capabilities (e.g., Richardson et al., 1995; Wartzok and Ketten, 1999; Au and Hastings, 2008). To reflect this, Southall et al. (2007) recommended that marine mammals be divided into functional hearing groups based on measured or estimated hearing ranges on the basis of available behavioral data, audiograms derived using auditory evoked potential techniques, anatomical modeling, and other data. The lower and/or upper frequencies for some of these functional hearing groups have been modified from those designated by Southall et al. (2007). The functional groups and the associated frequencies are indicated below (note that these frequency ranges do not necessarily correspond to the range of best hearing, which varies by species):

    • Low-frequency cetaceans (mysticetes): Functional hearing is estimated to occur between approximately 7 Hz and 25 kHz (extended from 22 kHz; Watkins, 1986; Au et al., 2006; Lucifredi and Stein, 2007; Ketten and Mountain, 2009; Tubelli et al., 2012);

    • Mid-frequency cetaceans (larger toothed whales, beaked whales, and most delphinids): Functional hearing is estimated to occur between approximately 150 Hz and 160 kHz;

    • High-frequency cetaceans (porpoises, river dolphins, and members of the genera Kogia and Cephalorhynchus; now considered to include two members of the genus Lagenorhynchus on the basis of recent echolocation data and genetic data [May-Collado and Agnarsson, 2006; Kyhn et al. 2009, 2010; Tougaard et al. 2010]): Functional hearing is estimated to occur between approximately 200 Hz and 180 kHz; and

    • Pinnipeds in water: Functional hearing is estimated to occur between approximately 75 Hz to 100 kHz for Phocidae (true seals) and between 100 Hz and 40 kHz for Otariidae (eared seals), with the greatest sensitivity between approximately 700 Hz and 20 kHz. The pinniped functional hearing group was modified from Southall et al. (2007) on the basis of data indicating that phocid species have consistently demonstrated an extended frequency range of hearing compared to otariids, especially in the higher frequency range (Hemilä et al., 2006; Kastelein et al., 2009; Reichmuth et al., 2013).

    Two cetacean species are expected to potentially be affected by the specified activity. The bottlenose and Atlantic spotted dolphins are classified as mid-frequency cetaceans.

    Acoustic Effects, Underwater

    Potential Effects of Pile Driving Sound—The effects of sounds from pile driving might result in one or more of the following: Temporary or permanent hearing impairment, non-auditory physical or physiological effects, behavioral disturbance, and masking (Richardson et al., 1995; Gordon et al., 2004; Nowacek et al., 2007; Southall et al., 2007). The effects of pile driving on marine mammals are dependent on several factors, including the size, type, and depth of the animal; the depth, intensity, and duration of the pile driving sound; the depth of the water column; the substrate of the habitat; the standoff distance between the pile and the animal; and the sound propagation properties of the environment. Impacts to marine mammals from pile driving activities are expected to result primarily from acoustic pathways. As such, the degree of effect is intrinsically related to the received level and duration of the sound exposure, which are in turn influenced by the distance between the animal and the source. The further away from the source, the less intense the exposure should be. The substrate and depth of the habitat affect the sound propagation properties of the environment. Shallow environments are typically more structurally complex, which leads to rapid sound attenuation. In addition, substrates that are soft (e.g., sand) would absorb or attenuate the sound more readily than hard substrates (e.g., rock) which may reflect the acoustic wave. Soft porous substrates would also likely require less time to drive the pile, and possibly less forceful equipment, which would ultimately decrease the intensity of the acoustic source.

    In the absence of mitigation, impacts to marine species would be expected to result from physiological and behavioral responses to both the type and strength of the acoustic signature (Viada et al., 2008). The type and severity of behavioral impacts are more difficult to define due to limited studies addressing the behavioral effects of impulsive sounds on marine mammals. Potential effects from impulsive sound sources can range in severity from effects such as behavioral disturbance or tactile perception to physical discomfort, slight injury of the internal organs and the auditory system, or mortality (Yelverton et al., 1973).

    Hearing Impairment and Other Physical Effects—Marine mammals exposed to high intensity sound repeatedly or for prolonged periods can experience hearing threshold shift (TS), which is the loss of hearing sensitivity at certain frequency ranges (Kastak et al., 1999; Schlundt et al., 2000; Finneran et al., 2002, 2005). TS can be permanent (PTS), in which case the loss of hearing sensitivity is not recoverable, or temporary (TTS), in which case the animal's hearing threshold would recover over time (Southall et al., 2007). Marine mammals depend on acoustic cues for vital biological functions, (e.g., orientation, communication, finding prey, avoiding predators); thus, TTS may result in reduced fitness in survival and reproduction. However, this depends on the frequency and duration of TTS, as well as the biological context in which it occurs. TTS of limited duration, occurring in a frequency range that does not coincide with that used for recognition of important acoustic cues, would have little to no effect on an animal's fitness. Repeated sound exposure that leads to TTS could cause PTS. PTS constitutes injury, but TTS does not (Southall et al., 2007). The following subsections discuss in somewhat more detail the possibilities of TTS, PTS, and non-auditory physical effects.

    Temporary Threshold Shift—TTS is the mildest form of hearing impairment that can occur during exposure to a strong sound (Kryter, 1985). While experiencing TTS, the hearing threshold rises, and a sound must be stronger in order to be heard. In terrestrial mammals, TTS can last from minutes or hours to days (in cases of strong TTS). For sound exposures at or somewhat above the TTS threshold, hearing sensitivity in both terrestrial and marine mammals recovers rapidly after exposure to the sound ends. Few data on sound levels and durations necessary to elicit mild TTS have been obtained for marine mammals, and none of the published data concern TTS elicited by exposure to multiple pulses of sound. Available data on TTS in marine mammals are summarized in Southall et al. (2007).

    Given the available data, the received level of a single pulse (with no frequency weighting) might need to be approximately 186 dB re 1 μPa2-s (i.e., 186 dB sound exposure level [SEL] or approximately 221-226 dB p-p [peak]) in order to produce brief, mild TTS. Exposure to several strong pulses that each have received levels near 190 dB rms (175-180 dB SEL) might result in cumulative exposure of approximately 186 dB SEL and thus slight TTS in a small odontocete, assuming the TTS threshold is (to a first approximation) a function of the total received pulse energy.

    The above TTS information for odontocetes is derived from studies on the bottlenose dolphin and beluga whale (Delphinapterus leucas). There is no published TTS information for other species of cetaceans. However, preliminary evidence from a harbor porpoise exposed to pulsed sound suggests that its TTS threshold may have been lower (Lucke et al., 2009). As summarized above, data that are now available imply that TTS is unlikely to occur unless odontocetes are exposed to pile driving pulses stronger than 180 dB re 1 μPa rms.

    Permanent Threshold Shift—When PTS occurs, there is physical damage to the sound receptors in the ear. In severe cases, there can be total or partial deafness, while in other cases the animal has an impaired ability to hear sounds in specific frequency ranges (Kryter, 1985). There is no specific evidence that exposure to pulses of sound can cause PTS in any marine mammal. However, given the possibility that mammals close to a sound source might incur TTS, there has been further speculation about the possibility that some individuals might incur PTS. Single or occasional occurrences of mild TTS are not indicative of permanent auditory damage, but repeated or (in some cases) single exposures to a level well above that causing TTS onset might elicit PTS.

    Relationships between TTS and PTS thresholds have not been studied in marine mammals but are assumed to be similar to those in humans and other terrestrial mammals. PTS might occur at a received sound level at least several decibels above that inducing mild TTS if the animal were exposed to strong sound pulses with rapid rise time. Based on data from terrestrial mammals, a precautionary assumption is that the PTS threshold for impulse sounds (such as pile driving pulses as received close to the source) is at least 6 dB higher than the TTS threshold on a peak-pressure basis and probably greater than 6 dB (Southall et al., 2007). On an SEL basis, Southall et al. (2007) estimated that received levels would need to exceed the TTS threshold by at least 15 dB for there to be risk of PTS. Thus, for cetaceans, Southall et al. (2007) estimate that the PTS threshold might be an M-weighted SEL (for the sequence of received pulses) of approximately 198 dB re 1 μPa2-s (15 dB higher than the TTS threshold for an impulse). Given the higher level of sound necessary to cause PTS as compared with TTS, it is considerably less likely that PTS could occur.

    Measured source levels from impact pile driving can be as high as 214 dB rms. Although no marine mammals have been shown to experience TTS or PTS as a result of being exposed to pile driving activities, captive bottlenose dolphins and beluga whales exhibited changes in behavior when exposed to strong pulsed sounds (Finneran et al., 2000, 2002, 2005). The animals tolerated high received levels of sound before exhibiting aversive behaviors. Experiments on a beluga whale showed that exposure to a single watergun impulse at a received level of 207 kPa (30 psi) p-p, which is equivalent to 228 dB p-p, resulted in a 7 and 6 dB TTS in the beluga whale at 0.4 and 30 kHz, respectively. Thresholds returned to within 2 dB of the pre-exposure level within four minutes of the exposure (Finneran et al., 2002). Although the source level of pile driving from one hammer strike is expected to be much lower than the single watergun impulse cited here, animals being exposed for a prolonged period to repeated hammer strikes could receive more sound exposure in terms of SEL than from the single watergun impulse (estimated at 188 dB re 1 μPa2-s) in the aforementioned experiment (Finneran et al., 2002). However, in order for marine mammals to experience TTS or PTS, the animals have to be close enough to be exposed to high intensity sound levels for a prolonged period of time. Based on the best scientific information available, these SPLs are far below the thresholds that could cause TTS or the onset of PTS.

    Non-auditory Physiological Effects—Non-auditory physiological effects or injuries that theoretically might occur in marine mammals exposed to strong underwater sound include stress, neurological effects, bubble formation, resonance effects, and other types of organ or tissue damage (Cox et al., 2006; Southall et al., 2007). Studies examining such effects are limited. In general, little is known about the potential for pile driving to cause auditory impairment or other physical effects in marine mammals. Available data suggest that such effects, if they occur at all, would presumably be limited to short distances from the sound source and to activities that extend over a prolonged period. The available data do not allow identification of a specific exposure level above which non-auditory effects can be expected (Southall et al., 2007) or any meaningful quantitative predictions of the numbers (if any) of marine mammals that might be affected in those ways. Marine mammals that show behavioral avoidance of pile driving, including some odontocetes and some pinnipeds, are especially unlikely to incur auditory impairment or non-auditory physical effects.

    Disturbance Reactions

    Disturbance includes a variety of effects, including subtle changes in behavior, more conspicuous changes in activities, and displacement. Behavioral responses to sound are highly variable and context-specific and reactions, if any, depend on species, state of maturity, experience, current activity, reproductive state, auditory sensitivity, time of day, and many other factors (Richardson et al., 1995; Wartzok et al., 2003; Southall et al., 2007).

    Habituation can occur when an animal's response to a stimulus wanes with repeated exposure, usually in the absence of unpleasant associated events (Wartzok et al., 2003). Animals are most likely to habituate to sounds that are predictable and unvarying. The opposite process is sensitization, when an unpleasant experience leads to subsequent responses, often in the form of avoidance, at a lower level of exposure. Behavioral state may affect the type of response as well. For example, animals that are resting may show greater behavioral change in response to disturbing sound levels than animals that are highly motivated to remain in an area for feeding (Richardson et al., 1995; NRC, 2003; Wartzok et al., 2003).

    Controlled experiments with captive marine mammals showed pronounced behavioral reactions, including avoidance of loud sound sources (Ridgway et al., 1997; Finneran et al., 2003). Observed responses of wild marine mammals to loud pulsed sound sources (typically seismic guns or acoustic harassment devices, but also including pile driving) have been varied but often consist of avoidance behavior or other behavioral changes suggesting discomfort (Morton and Symonds, 2002; Thorson and Reyff, 2006; see also Gordon et al., 2004; Wartzok et al., 2003; Nowacek et al., 2007). Responses to continuous sound, such as vibratory pile installation, have not been documented as well as responses to pulsed sounds.

    With both types of pile driving, it is likely that the onset of pile driving could result in temporary, short term changes in an animal's typical behavior and/or avoidance of the affected area. These behavioral changes may include (Richardson et al., 1995): Changing durations of surfacing and dives, number of blows per surfacing, or moving direction and/or speed; reduced/increased vocal activities; changing/cessation of certain behavioral activities (such as socializing or feeding); visible startle response or aggressive behavior (such as tail/fluke slapping or jaw clapping); avoidance of areas where sound sources are located; and/or flight responses (e.g., pinnipeds flushing into water from haul-outs or rookeries). Pinnipeds may increase their haul-out time, possibly to avoid in-water disturbance (Thorson and Reyff, 2006).

    The biological significance of many of these behavioral disturbances is difficult to predict, especially if the detected disturbances appear minor. However, the consequences of behavioral modification could be expected to be biologically significant if the change affects growth, survival, or reproduction. Significant behavioral modifications that could potentially lead to effects on growth, survival, or reproduction include:

    • Drastic changes in diving/surfacing patterns (such as those thought to cause beaked whale stranding due to exposure to military mid-frequency tactical sonar);

    • Habitat abandonment due to loss of desirable acoustic environment; and

    • Cessation of feeding or social interaction.

    The onset of behavioral disturbance from anthropogenic sound depends on both external factors (characteristics of sound sources and their paths) and the specific characteristics of the receiving animals (hearing, motivation, experience, demography) and is difficult to predict (Southall et al., 2007).

    Auditory Masking

    Natural and artificial sounds can disrupt behavior by masking, or interfering with, a marine mammal's ability to hear other sounds. Masking occurs when the receipt of a sound is interfered with by another coincident sound at similar frequencies and at similar or higher levels. Chronic exposure to excessive, though not high-intensity, sound could cause masking at particular frequencies for marine mammals, which utilize sound for vital biological functions. Masking can interfere with detection of acoustic signals such as communication calls, echolocation sounds, and environmental sounds important to marine mammals. Therefore, under certain circumstances, marine mammals whose acoustical sensors or environment are being severely masked could also be impaired from maximizing their performance fitness in survival and reproduction. If the coincident (masking) sound were man-made, it could be potentially harassing if it disrupted hearing-related behavior. It is important to distinguish TTS and PTS, which persist after the sound exposure, from masking, which occurs during the sound exposure. Because masking (without resulting in TS) is not associated with abnormal physiological function, it is not considered a physiological effect, but rather a potential behavioral effect.

    The frequency range of the potentially masking sound is important in determining any potential behavioral impacts. Because sound generated from in-water pile driving is mostly concentrated at low frequency ranges, it may have less effect on high frequency echolocation sounds made by porpoises. However, lower frequency man-made sounds are more likely to affect detection of communication calls and other potentially important natural sounds such as surf and prey sound. It may also affect communication signals when they occur near the sound band and thus reduce the communication space of animals (e.g., Clark et al., 2009) and cause increased stress levels (e.g., Foote et al., 2004; Holt et al., 2009).

    Masking has the potential to impact species at the population or community levels as well as at individual levels. Masking affects both senders and receivers of the signals and can potentially have long-term chronic effects on marine mammal species and populations. Recent research suggests that low frequency ambient sound levels have increased by as much as 20 dB (more than three times in terms of SPL) in the world's ocean from pre-industrial periods, and that most of these increases are from distant shipping (Hildebrand, 2009). All anthropogenic sound sources, such as those from vessel traffic, pile driving, and dredging activities, contribute to the elevated ambient sound levels, thus intensifying masking.

    The most intense underwater sounds in the proposed action are those produced by impact pile driving. Given that the energy distribution of pile driving covers a broad frequency spectrum, sound from these sources would likely be within the audible range of marine mammals present in the project area. Impact pile driving activity is relatively short-term, with rapid pulses occurring for approximately fifteen minutes per pile. The probability for impact pile driving resulting from this proposed action masking acoustic signals important to the behavior and survival of marine mammal species is likely to be negligible. Vibratory pile driving is also relatively short-term, with rapid oscillations occurring for approximately one and a half hours per pile. It is possible that vibratory pile driving resulting from this proposed action may mask acoustic signals important to the behavior and survival of marine mammal species, but the short-term duration and limited affected area would result in insignificant impacts from masking. Any masking event that could possibly rise to Level B harassment under the MMPA would occur concurrently within the zones of behavioral harassment already estimated for vibratory and impact pile driving, and which have already been taken into account in the exposure analysis.

    Anticipated Effects on Habitat

    The proposed activities at NSM would not result in permanent impacts to habitats used directly by marine mammals, but may have potential short-term impacts to food sources such as forage fish and may affect acoustic habitat (see masking discussion above). There are no known foraging hotspots or other ocean bottom structure of significant biological importance to marine mammals present in the marine waters in the vicinity of the project area. Therefore, the main impact issue associated with the proposed activity would be temporarily elevated sound levels and the associated direct effects on marine mammals, as discussed previously in this document. The most likely impact to marine mammal habitat occurs from pile driving effects on likely marine mammal prey (i.e., fish) near NSM and minor impacts to the immediate substrate during installation and removal of piles during the wharf construction project.

    Pile Driving Effects on Potential Prey (Fish)

    Construction activities may produce both pulsed (i.e., impact pile driving) and continuous (i.e., vibratory pile driving) sounds. Fish react to sounds which are especially strong and/or intermittent low-frequency sounds. Short duration, sharp sounds can cause overt or subtle changes in fish behavior and local distribution. Hastings and Popper (2005) identified several studies that suggest fish may relocate to avoid certain areas of sound energy. Additional studies have documented effects of pile driving (or other types of sounds) on fish, although several are based on studies in support of large, multiyear bridge construction projects (e.g., Scholik and Yan, 2001, 2002; Popper and Hastings, 2009). Sound pulses at received levels of 160 dB re 1 μPa may cause subtle changes in fish behavior. SPLs of 180 dB may cause noticeable changes in behavior (Pearson et al., 1992; Skalski et al., 1992). SPLs of sufficient strength have been known to cause injury to fish and fish mortality. The most likely impact to fish from pile driving activities at the project area would be temporary behavioral avoidance of the area. The duration of fish avoidance of this area after pile driving stops is unknown, but a rapid return to normal recruitment, distribution and behavior is anticipated. In general, impacts to marine mammal prey species are expected to be minor and temporary due to the short timeframe for the project.

    Pile Driving Effects on Potential Foraging Habitat

    The area likely impacted by the project is relatively small compared to the available habitat in nearshore and estuarine waters in the region. Avoidance by potential prey (i.e., fish) of the immediate area due to the temporary loss of this foraging habitat is also possible. The duration of fish avoidance of this area after pile driving stops is unknown, but a rapid return to normal recruitment, distribution and behavior is anticipated. Any behavioral avoidance by fish of the disturbed area would still leave significantly large areas of fish and marine mammal foraging habitat in the nearby vicinity.

    In summary, given the short daily duration of sound associated with individual pile driving events and the relatively small areas being affected, pile driving activities associated with the proposed action are not likely to have a permanent, adverse effect on any fish habitat, or populations of fish species. Therefore, pile driving is not likely to have a permanent, adverse effect on marine mammal foraging habitat at the project area. The Mayport turning basin itself is a man-made basin with significant levels of industrial activity and regular dredging, and is unlikely to harbor significant amounts of forage fish. Thus, any impacts to marine mammal habitat are not expected to cause significant or long-term consequences for individual marine mammals or their populations.

    Proposed Mitigation

    In order to issue an IHA under Section 101(a)(5)(D) of the MMPA, NMFS must set forth the permissible methods of taking pursuant to such activity, and other means of effecting the least practicable impact on such species or stock and its habitat, paying particular attention to rookeries, mating grounds, and areas of similar significance, and on the availability of such species or stock for taking for certain subsistence uses.

    Measurements from similar pile driving events were coupled with practical spreading loss to estimate zones of influence (ZOI; see Estimated Take by Incidental Harassment); these values were used to develop mitigation measures for pile driving activities at NSM. The ZOIs effectively represent the mitigation zone that would be established around each pile to prevent Level A harassment to marine mammals, while providing estimates of the areas within which Level B harassment might occur. In addition to the specific measures described later in this section, the Navy would conduct briefings between construction supervisors and crews, marine mammal monitoring team, and Navy staff prior to the start of all pile driving activity, and when new personnel join the work, in order to explain responsibilities, communication procedures, marine mammal monitoring protocol, and operational procedures.

    Monitoring and Shutdown for Pile Driving

    The following measures would apply to the Navy's mitigation through shutdown and disturbance zones:

    Shutdown Zone—For all pile driving activities, the Navy will establish a shutdown zone intended to contain the area in which SPLs equal or exceed the 190 dB rms acoustic injury criteria. The purpose of a shutdown zone is to define an area within which shutdown of activity would occur upon sighting of a marine mammal (or in anticipation of an animal entering the defined area), thus preventing injury of marine mammals (as described previously under Potential Effects of the Specified Activity on Marine Mammals, serious injury or death are unlikely outcomes even in the absence of mitigation measures). Modeled radial distances for shutdown zones are shown in Table 3. However, a minimum shutdown zone of 15 m (which is larger than the maximum predicted injury zone) will be established during all pile driving activities, regardless of the estimated zone. Vibratory pile driving activities are not predicted to produce sound exceeding the 190-dB Level A harassment threshold, but these precautionary measures are intended to prevent the already unlikely possibility of physical interaction with construction equipment and to further reduce any possibility of acoustic injury. For impact driving of steel piles, if necessary, the radial distance of the shutdown would be established at 40 m.

    Disturbance Zone—Disturbance zones are the areas in which SPLs equal or exceed 160 and 120 dB rms (for impulse and continuous sound, respectively). Disturbance zones provide utility for monitoring conducted for mitigation purposes (i.e., shutdown zone monitoring) by establishing monitoring protocols for areas adjacent to the shutdown zones. Monitoring of disturbance zones enables observers to be aware of and communicate the presence of marine mammals in the project area but outside the shutdown zone and thus prepare for potential shutdowns of activity. However, the primary purpose of disturbance zone monitoring is for documenting incidents of Level B harassment; disturbance zone monitoring is discussed in greater detail later (see Proposed Monitoring and Reporting). Nominal radial distances for disturbance zones are shown in Table 3. Given the size of the disturbance zone for vibratory pile driving, it is impossible to guarantee that all animals would be observed or to make comprehensive observations of fine-scale behavioral reactions to sound, and only a portion of the zone (e.g., what may be reasonably observed by visual observers stationed within the turning basin) would be observed.

    In order to document observed incidents of harassment, monitors record all marine mammal observations, regardless of location. The observer's location, as well as the location of the pile being driven, is known from a GPS. The location of the animal is estimated as a distance from the observer, which is then compared to the location from the pile. It may then be estimated whether the animal was exposed to sound levels constituting incidental harassment on the basis of predicted distances to relevant thresholds in post-processing of observational and acoustic data, and a precise accounting of observed incidences of harassment created. This information may then be used to extrapolate observed takes to reach an approximate understanding of actual total takes.

    Monitoring Protocols—Monitoring would be conducted before, during, and after pile driving activities. In addition, observers shall record all incidents of marine mammal occurrence, regardless of distance from activity, and shall document any behavioral reactions in concert with distance from piles being driven. Observations made outside the shutdown zone will not result in shutdown; that pile segment would be completed without cessation, unless the animal approaches or enters the shutdown zone, at which point all pile driving activities would be halted. Monitoring will take place from fifteen minutes prior to initiation through thirty minutes post-completion of pile driving activities. Pile driving activities include the time to install or remove a single pile or series of piles, as long as the time elapsed between uses of the pile driving equipment is no more than thirty minutes. Please see the Monitoring Plan (www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental/construction.htm), developed by the Navy in agreement with NMFS, for full details of the monitoring protocols.

    The following additional measures apply to visual monitoring:

    (1) Monitoring will be conducted by qualified observers, who will be placed at the best vantage point(s) practicable to monitor for marine mammals and implement shutdown/delay procedures when applicable by calling for the shutdown to the hammer operator. Qualified observers are typically trained biologists, with the following minimum qualifications:

    • Visual acuity in both eyes (correction is permissible) sufficient for discernment of moving targets at the water's surface with ability to estimate target size and distance; use of binoculars may be necessary to correctly identify the target;

    • Advanced education in biological science, wildlife management, mammalogy, or related fields (bachelor's degree or higher is required);

    • Experience and ability to conduct field observations and collect data according to assigned protocols (this may include academic experience);

    • Experience or training in the field identification of marine mammals, including the identification of behaviors;

    • Sufficient training, orientation, or experience with the construction operation to provide for personal safety during observations;

    • Writing skills sufficient to prepare a report of observations including but not limited to the number and species of marine mammals observed; dates and times when in-water construction activities were conducted; dates and times when in-water construction activities were suspended to avoid potential incidental injury from construction sound of marine mammals observed within a defined shutdown zone; and marine mammal behavior; and

    • Ability to communicate orally, by radio or in person, with project personnel to provide real-time information on marine mammals observed in the area as necessary.

    For this project, we waive the requirement for advanced education, as the observers will be personnel hired by the engineering contractor that may not have backgrounds in biological science or related fields. These observers will be required to watch the Navy's Marine Species Awareness Training video and shall receive training sufficient to achieve all other qualifications listed above (where relevant).

    (2) Prior to the start of pile driving activity, the shutdown zone will be monitored for fifteen minutes to ensure that it is clear of marine mammals. Pile driving will only commence once observers have declared the shutdown zone clear of marine mammals; animals will be allowed to remain in the shutdown zone (i.e., must leave of their own volition) and their behavior will be monitored and documented. The shutdown zone may only be declared clear, and pile driving started, when the entire shutdown zone is visible (i.e., when not obscured by dark, rain, fog, etc.). In addition, if such conditions should arise during impact pile driving that is already underway, the activity would be halted.

    (3) If a marine mammal approaches or enters the shutdown zone during the course of pile driving operations, activity will be halted and delayed until either the animal has voluntarily left and been visually confirmed beyond the shutdown zone or fifteen minutes have passed without re-detection of the animal. Monitoring will be conducted throughout the time required to drive a pile.

    Soft Start

    The use of a soft start procedure is believed to provide additional protection to marine mammals by warning or providing a chance to leave the area prior to the hammer operating at full capacity, and typically involves a requirement to initiate sound from the hammer at reduced energy followed by a waiting period. This procedure is repeated two additional times. It is difficult to specify the reduction in energy for any given hammer because of variation across drivers and, for impact hammers, the actual number of strikes at reduced energy will vary because operating the hammer at less than full power results in “bouncing” of the hammer as it strikes the pile, resulting in multiple “strikes.” For impact driving, we require an initial set of three strikes from the impact hammer at reduced energy, followed by a thirty-second waiting period, then two subsequent three strike sets. Soft start will be required at the beginning of each day's impact pile driving work and at any time following a cessation of impact pile driving of thirty minutes or longer.

    We have carefully evaluated the Navy's proposed mitigation measures and considered their effectiveness in past implementation to preliminarily determine whether they are likely to effect the least practicable impact on the affected marine mammal species and stocks and their habitat. Our evaluation of potential measures included consideration of the following factors in relation to one another: (1) The manner in which, and the degree to which, the successful implementation of the measure is expected to minimize adverse impacts to marine mammals, (2) the proven or likely efficacy of the specific measure to minimize adverse impacts as planned; and (3) the practicability of the measure for applicant implementation.

    Any mitigation measure(s) we prescribe should be able to accomplish, have a reasonable likelihood of accomplishing (based on current science), or contribute to the accomplishment of one or more of the general goals listed below:

    (1) Avoidance or minimization of injury or death of marine mammals wherever possible (goals 2, 3, and 4 may contribute to this goal).

    (2) A reduction in the number (total number or number at biologically important time or location) of individual marine mammals exposed to stimuli expected to result in incidental take (this goal may contribute to 1, above, or to reducing takes by behavioral harassment only).

    (3) A reduction in the number (total number or number at biologically important time or location) of times any individual marine mammal would be exposed to stimuli expected to result in incidental take (this goal may contribute to 1, above, or to reducing takes by behavioral harassment only).

    (4) A reduction in the intensity of exposure to stimuli expected to result in incidental take (this goal may contribute to 1, above, or to reducing the severity of behavioral harassment only).

    (5) Avoidance or minimization of adverse effects to marine mammal habitat, paying particular attention to the prey base, blockage or limitation of passage to or from biologically important areas, permanent destruction of habitat, or temporary disturbance of habitat during a biologically important time.

    (6) For monitoring directly related to mitigation, an increase in the probability of detecting marine mammals, thus allowing for more effective implementation of the mitigation.

    Based on our evaluation of the Navy's proposed measures, as well as any other potential measures that may be relevant to the specified activity, we have preliminarily determined that the proposed mitigation measures provide the means of effecting the least practicable impact on marine mammal species or stocks and their habitat, paying particular attention to rookeries, mating grounds, and areas of similar significance.

    Proposed Monitoring and Reporting

    In order to issue an IHA for an activity, Section 101(a)(5)(D) of the MMPA states that NMFS must set forth “requirements pertaining to the monitoring and reporting of such taking”. The MMPA implementing regulations at 50 CFR 216.104 (a)(13) indicate that requests for incidental take authorizations must include the suggested means of accomplishing the necessary monitoring and reporting that will result in increased knowledge of the species and of the level of taking or impacts on populations of marine mammals that are expected to be present in the proposed action area.

    Any monitoring requirement we prescribe should improve our understanding of one or more of the following:

    • Occurrence of marine mammal species in action area (e.g., presence, abundance, distribution, density).

    • Nature, scope, or context of likely marine mammal exposure to potential stressors/impacts (individual or cumulative, acute or chronic), through better understanding of: (1) Action or environment (e.g., source characterization, propagation, ambient noise); (2) Affected species (e.g., life history, dive patterns); (3) Co-occurrence of marine mammal species with the action; or (4) Biological or behavioral context of exposure (e.g., age, calving or feeding areas).

    • Individual responses to acute stressors, or impacts of chronic exposures (behavioral or physiological).

    • How anticipated responses to stressors impact either: (1) Long-term fitness and survival of an individual; or (2) Population, species, or stock.

    • Effects on marine mammal habitat and resultant impacts to marine mammals.

    • Mitigation and monitoring effectiveness.

    The Navy's proposed monitoring and reporting is also described in their Marine Mammal Monitoring Plan, on the Internet at www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental/construction.htm.

    Visual Marine Mammal Observations

    The Navy will collect sighting data and behavioral responses to construction for marine mammal species observed in the region of activity during the period of activity. All observers will be trained in marine mammal identification and behaviors and are required to have no other construction-related tasks while conducting monitoring. The Navy will monitor the shutdown zone and disturbance zone before, during, and after pile driving, with observers located at the best practicable vantage points. Based on our requirements, the Navy would implement the following procedures for pile driving:

    • MMOs would be located at the best vantage point(s) in order to properly see the entire shutdown zone and as much of the disturbance zone as possible.

    • During all observation periods, observers will use binoculars and the naked eye to search continuously for marine mammals.

    • If the shutdown zones are obscured by fog or poor lighting conditions, pile driving at that location will not be initiated until that zone is visible. Should such conditions arise while impact driving is underway, the activity would be halted.

    • The shutdown and disturbance zones around the pile will be monitored for the presence of marine mammals before, during, and after any pile driving or removal activity.

    Individuals implementing the monitoring protocol will assess its effectiveness using an adaptive approach. Monitoring biologists will use their best professional judgment throughout implementation and seek improvements to these methods when deemed appropriate. Any modifications to protocol will be coordinated between NMFS and the Navy.

    Data Collection

    We require that observers use approved data forms. Among other pieces of information, the Navy will record detailed information about any implementation of shutdowns, including the distance of animals to the pile and description of specific actions that ensued and resulting behavior of the animal, if any. In addition, the Navy will attempt to distinguish between the number of individual animals taken and the number of incidences of take. We require that, at a minimum, the following information be collected on the sighting forms:

    • Date and time that monitored activity begins or ends;

    • Construction activities occurring during each observation period;

    • Weather parameters (e.g., percent cover, visibility);

    • Water conditions (e.g., sea state, tide state);

    • Species, numbers, and, if possible, sex and age class of marine mammals;

    • Description of any observable marine mammal behavior patterns, including bearing and direction of travel, and if possible, the correlation to SPLs;

    • Distance from pile driving activities to marine mammals and distance from the marine mammals to the observation point;

    • Description of implementation of mitigation measures (e.g., shutdown or delay);

    • Locations of all marine mammal observations; and

    • Other human activity in the area.

    Reporting

    A draft report would be submitted to NMFS within 90 days of the completion of marine mammal monitoring, or sixty days prior to the requested date of issuance of any future IHA for projects at the same location, whichever comes first. The report will include marine mammal observations pre-activity, during-activity, and post-activity during pile driving days, and will also provide descriptions of any behavioral responses to construction activities by marine mammals and a complete description of all mitigation shutdowns and the results of those actions and an extrapolated total take estimate based on the number of marine mammals observed during the course of construction. A final report must be submitted within thirty days following resolution of comments on the draft report.

    Monitoring Results From Previously Authorized Activities

    The Navy complied with the mitigation and monitoring required under the previous authorization for the Wharf C-2 project. Marine mammal monitoring occurred before, during, and after each pile driving event. During the course of these activities, the Navy did not exceed the take levels authorized under the IHA. The Navy has summarized monitoring results to date in their application, and we will make the required monitoring report available to the public when submitted. Under the terms of the previous IHA, the Navy was required to conduct acoustic monitoring and to submit a report within 75 days of completion. Those results are not yet available but will be provided upon report submittal. As noted previously, the Navy has completed approximately seventy percent of steel pile installation required for the project, over the course of 28 in-water work days. During this time, 117 observations of bottlenose dolphins have occurred within the defined Level B harassment zone. No Atlantic spotted dolphins, or any other species, have been observed.

    Estimated Take by Incidental Harassment

    Except with respect to certain activities not pertinent here, section 3(18) of the MMPA defines “harassment” as: “. . . any act of pursuit, torment, or annoyance which (i) has the potential to injure a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild [Level A harassment]; or (ii) has the potential to disturb a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild by causing disruption of behavioral patterns, including, but not limited to, migration, breathing, nursing, breeding, feeding, or sheltering [Level B harassment].”

    All anticipated takes would be by Level B harassment resulting from vibratory and impact pile driving and involving temporary changes in behavior. The proposed mitigation and monitoring measures are expected to minimize the possibility of injurious or lethal takes such that take by Level A harassment, serious injury, or mortality is considered discountable. However, it is unlikely that injurious or lethal takes would occur even in the absence of the planned mitigation and monitoring measures.

    If a marine mammal responds to a stimulus by changing its behavior (e.g., through relatively minor changes in locomotion direction/speed or vocalization behavior), the response may or may not constitute taking at the individual level, and is unlikely to affect the stock or the species as a whole. However, if a sound source displaces marine mammals from an important feeding or breeding area for a prolonged period, impacts on animals or on the stock or species could potentially be significant (e.g., Lusseau and Bejder, 2007; Weilgart, 2007). Given the many uncertainties in predicting the quantity and types of impacts of sound on marine mammals, it is common practice to estimate how many animals are likely to be present within a particular distance of a given activity, or exposed to a particular level of sound. In practice, depending on the amount of information available to characterize daily and seasonal movement and distribution of affected marine mammals, it can be difficult to distinguish between the number of individuals harassed and the instances of harassment and, when duration of the activity is considered, it can result in a take estimate that overestimates the number of individuals harassed. In particular, for stationary activities, it is more likely that some smaller number of individuals may accrue a number of incidences of harassment per individual than for each incidence to accrue to a new individual, especially if those individuals display some degree of residency or site fidelity and the impetus to use the site (e.g., because of foraging opportunities) is stronger than the deterrence presented by the harassing activity.

    The turning basin is not important habitat for marine mammals, as it is a man-made, semi-enclosed basin with frequent industrial activity and regular maintenance dredging. The small area of ensonification extending out of the turning basin into nearshore waters is also not believed to be of any particular importance, nor is it considered an area frequented by marine mammals. Bottlenose dolphins may be observed at any time of year in estuarine and nearshore waters of the action area, but sightings of other species are rare. Therefore, behavioral disturbances that could result from anthropogenic sound associated with these activities are expected to affect only a relatively small number of individual marine mammals, although those effects could be recurring over the life of the project if the same individuals remain in the project vicinity. The Navy has requested authorization for the incidental taking of small numbers of bottlenose dolphins and Atlantic spotted dolphins in the Mayport turning basin and associated nearshore waters that may result from pile driving during construction activities associated with the project described previously in this document.

    In order to estimate the potential incidents of take that may occur incidental to the specified activity, we must first estimate the extent of the sound field that may be produced by the activity and then consider in combination with information about marine mammal density or abundance in the project area. We first provide information on applicable sound thresholds for determining effects to marine mammals before describing the information used in estimating the sound fields, the available marine mammal density or abundance information, and the method of estimating potential incidents of take.

    Sound Thresholds

    We use generic sound exposure thresholds to determine when an activity that produces sound might result in impacts to a marine mammal such that a take by harassment might occur. To date, no studies have been conducted that explicitly examine impacts to marine mammals from pile driving sounds or from which empirical sound thresholds have been established. These thresholds (Table 2) are used to estimate when harassment may occur (i.e., when an animal is exposed to levels equal to or exceeding the relevant criterion) in specific contexts; however, useful contextual information that may inform our assessment of effects is typically lacking and we consider these thresholds as step functions. NMFS is working to revise these acoustic guidelines; for more information on that process, please visit www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/acoustics/guidelines.htm.

    Table 2—Current Acoustic Exposure Criteria Criterion Definition Threshold Level A harassment (underwater) Injury (PTS—any level above that which is known to cause TTS) 180 dB (cetaceans)/190 dB (pinnipeds) (rms). Level B harassment (underwater) Behavioral disruption 160 dB (impulsive source)/120 dB (continuous source) (rms). Level B harassment (airborne) Behavioral disruption 90 dB (harbor seals)/100 dB (other pinnipeds) (unweighted). Distance to Sound Thresholds

    Underwater Sound Propagation Formula—Pile driving generates underwater noise that can potentially result in disturbance to marine mammals in the project area. Transmission loss (TL) is the decrease in acoustic intensity as an acoustic pressure wave propagates out from a source. TL parameters vary with frequency, temperature, sea conditions, current, source and receiver depth, water depth, water chemistry, and bottom composition and topography. The general formula for underwater TL is:

    TL = B * log10(R1/R2), Where: R1 = the distance of the modeled SPL from the driven pile, and R2 = the distance from the driven pile of the initial measurement. This formula neglects loss due to scattering and absorption, which is assumed to be zero here. The degree to which underwater sound propagates away from a sound source is dependent on a variety of factors, most notably the water bathymetry and presence or absence of reflective or absorptive conditions including in-water structures and sediments. Spherical spreading occurs in a perfectly unobstructed (free-field) environment not limited by depth or water surface, resulting in a 6 dB reduction in sound level for each doubling of distance from the source (20*log[range]). Cylindrical spreading occurs in an environment in which sound propagation is bounded by the water surface and sea bottom, resulting in a reduction of 3 dB in sound level for each doubling of distance from the source (10*log[range]). A practical spreading value of fifteen is often used under conditions, such as at the NSM turning basin, where water increases with depth as the receiver moves away from the shoreline, resulting in an expected propagation environment that would lie between spherical and cylindrical spreading loss conditions. Practical spreading loss (4.5 dB reduction in sound level for each doubling of distance) is assumed here.

    Underwater Sound—The intensity of pile driving sounds is greatly influenced by factors such as the type of piles, hammers, and the physical environment in which the activity takes place. A number of studies, primarily on the west coast, have measured sound produced during underwater pile driving projects. However, these data are largely for impact driving of steel pipe piles and concrete piles as well as vibratory driving of steel pipe piles. We know of no existing measurements for the specific pile types planned for use at NSM (i.e., king piles, paired sheet piles, plastic pipe piles), although some data exist for single sheet piles. Results of acoustic monitoring are not yet available for consideration here. It was therefore necessary to extrapolate from available data to determine reasonable source levels for this project.

    In order to determine reasonable SPLs and their associated effects on marine mammals that are likely to result from pile driving at NSM, the Navy first compared linear lengths (in terms of radiative surface length) of the pile types proposed for use with those for which measurements of underwater SPLs exist. For example, the total linear length of a king pile (with width of 17.87 in and height of 41.47 in) is equivalent to the circumference (i.e., linear length) of a 24-in diameter pipe pile. Please see Table 6-2 of the Navy's application for more detail on these comparisons. We recognize that these pile types may produce sound differently, given different radiative geometries, and that there may be differences in the frequency spectrum produced, but believe this to be the best available method of determining proxy source levels.

    We considered existing measurements from similar physical environments (sandy sediments and water depths greater than 15 ft) for impact and vibratory driving of 24-in steel pipe piles and for steel sheet piles. These studies, largely conducted by the Washington State Department of Transportation and the California Department of Transportation, show typical values around 160 dB for vibratory driving of 24-in pipe piles and sheet piles, and around 185-195 dB for impact driving of similar pipe piles (all measured at 10 m; e.g., Laughlin, 2005a, 2005b; Illingworth and Rodkin, 2010, 2012, 2013; CalTrans, 2012). For vibratory driving, a precautionary value of 163 dB (the highest representative value; CalTrans, 2012) was selected as a proxy source value for both sheet piles and king piles. For impact driving of both sheet piles and king piles (should it be required), a proxy source value of 189 dB (CalTrans, 2012) was selected for use in acoustic modeling based on similarity to the physical environment at NSM and because of the measurement location in mid-water column.

    No measurements are known to be available for vibratory driving of plastic polymer piles, so timber piles were considered as likely to be the most similar pile material. Although timber piles are typically installed via impact drivers, Laughlin (2011) reported a mean source measurement (at 16 m) for vibratory removal of timber piles. This value (150 dB) was selected as a proxy source value on the basis of similarity of materials between timber and polymer. CalTrans (2012) reports one dataset for impact driving of plastic piles (153 dB at 10 m). Please see Tables 6-3 and 6-4 in the Navy's application. All calculated distances to and the total area encompassed by the marine mammal sound thresholds are provided in Table 3.

    Table 3—Distances to Relevant Underwater Sound Thresholds and Areas of Ensonification Pile type Method Threshold Distance
  • (m) 1
  • Area
  • (sq km) 2
  • Steel (sheet and king piles) Vibratory Level A harassment (180 dB) n/a 0 Level B harassment (120 dB) 7,356 2.9 Impact Level A harassment (180 dB) 40 0.004 Level B harassment (160 dB) 858 0.67 Polymeric (plastic fender piles) Vibratory Level A harassment (180 dB) n/a 0 Level B harassment (120 dB) 1,585 0.88 Impact Level A harassment (180 dB) n/a 0 Level B harassment (160 dB) 3.4 0.00004 1 Areas presented take into account attenuation and/or shadowing by land. Calculated distances to relevant thresholds cannot be reached in most directions form source piles. Please see Figures 6-1 through 6-3 in the Navy's application.

    The Mayport turning basin does not represent open water, or free field, conditions. Therefore, sounds would attenuate as per the confines of the basin, and may only reach the full estimated distances to the harassment thresholds via the narrow, east-facing entrance channel. Distances shown in Table 1 are estimated for free-field conditions, but areas are calculated per the actual conditions of the action area. See Figures 6-1 through 6-3 of the Navy's application for a depiction of areas in which each underwater sound threshold is predicted to occur at the project area due to pile driving.

    Marine Mammal Densities

    For all species, the best scientific information available was considered for use in the marine mammal take assessment calculations. Density value for the Atlantic spotted dolphin is from recent density estimates produced by Roberts et al. (2015); we use the highest relevant seasonal density value (spring). Density for bottlenose dolphins is derived from site-specific surveys conducted by the Navy; it is not currently possible to identify observed individuals to stock. This survey effort consists of 24 half-day observation periods covering mornings and afternoons during four seasons (December 10-13, 2012, March 4-7, 2013, June 3-6, 2013, and September 9-12, 2013). During each observation period, two observers (a primary observer at an elevated observation point and a secondary observer at ground level) monitored for the presence of marine mammals in the turning basin (0.712 km2) and an additional grid east of the basin entrance. Observers tracked marine mammal movements and behavior within the observation area, with observations recorded for five-minute intervals every half-hour. Morning sessions typically ran from 7:00-11:30 and afternoon sessions from 1:00 to 5:30.

    Most observations were of individuals or pairs, although larger groups were occasionally observed (median number of dolphins observed ranged from 1-3.5 across seasons). Densities were calculated using observational data from the primary observer supplemented with data from the secondary observer for grids not visible by the primary observer. Season-specific density was then adjusted by applying a correction factor for observer error (i.e., perception bias). The seasonal densities range from 1.98603 (winter) to 4.15366 (summer) dolphins/km2. We conservatively use the largest density value to assess take, as the Navy does not have specific information about when in-water work may occur during the proposed period of validity.

    Description of Take Calculation

    The following assumptions are made when estimating potential incidents of take:

    • All marine mammal individuals potentially available are assumed to be present within the relevant area, and thus incidentally taken;

    • An individual can only be taken once during a 24-h period; and,

    • There will be 27 total days of vibratory driving (seventeen days for steel piles and ten days for plastic piles) and twenty days of impact pile driving.

    • Exposures to sound levels at or above the relevant thresholds equate to take, as defined by the MMPA.

    The estimation of marine mammal takes typically uses the following calculation:

    Exposure estimate = (n * ZOI) * days of total activity Where: n = density estimate used for each species/season ZOI = sound threshold ZOI area; the area encompassed by all locations where the SPLs equal or exceed the threshold being evaluated n * ZOI produces an estimate of the abundance of animals that could be present in the area for exposure, and is rounded to the nearest whole number before multiplying by days of total activity.

    The ZOI impact area is estimated using the relevant distances in Table 3, taking into consideration the possible affected area with attenuation due to the constraints of the basin. Because the basin restricts sound from propagating outward, with the exception of the east-facing entrance channel, the radial distances to thresholds are not generally reached.

    There are a number of reasons why estimates of potential incidents of take may be conservative, assuming that available density or abundance estimates and estimated ZOI areas are accurate. We assume, in the absence of information supporting a more refined conclusion, that the output of the calculation represents the number of individuals that may be taken by the specified activity. In fact, in the context of stationary activities such as pile driving and in areas where resident animals may be present, this number more realistically represents the number of incidents of take that may accrue to a smaller number of individuals. While pile driving can occur any day throughout the in-water work window, and the analysis is conducted on a per day basis, only a fraction of that time (typically a matter of hours on any given day) is actually spent pile driving. The potential effectiveness of mitigation measures in reducing the number of takes is typically not quantified in the take estimation process. For these reasons, these take estimates may be conservative.

    The quantitative exercise described above indicates that no incidents of Level A harassment would be expected, independent of the implementation of required mitigation measures. The twenty days of contingency impact driving considered here could include either steel or plastic piles on any of the days; because the ZOI for impact driving of steel piles subsumes the ZOI for impact driving of plastic piles, we consider only the former here. See Table 4 for total estimated incidents of take.

    Table 4—Calculations for Incidental Take Estimation Species n
  • (animals/km2)
  • Activity n * ZOI 1 Proposed
  • authorized takes 2
  • Total proposed authorized takes
    Bottlenose dolphin 4.15366 Impact driving (steel) 3 60 3 304 Vibratory driving (steel) 12 204 Vibratory driving (plastic) 4 40 Atlantic spotted dolphin 0.005402 (spring) Impact driving (steel) 0 0 0 Vibratory driving (steel) 0 0 Vibratory driving (plastic) 0 0 1 See Table 3 for relevant ZOIs. The product of this calculation is rounded to the nearest whole number. 2 The product of n * ZOI is multiplied by the total number of activity-specific days to estimate the number of takes. 3 It is impossible to estimate from available information which stock these takes may accrue to.
    Analyses and Preliminary Determinations Negligible Impact Analysis

    NMFS has defined “negligible impact” in 50 CFR 216.103 as “. . . an impact resulting from the specified activity that cannot be reasonably expected to, and is not reasonably likely to, adversely affect the species or stock through effects on annual rates of recruitment or survival.” A negligible impact finding is based on the lack of likely adverse effects on annual rates of recruitment or survival (i.e., population-level effects). An estimate of the number of Level B harassment takes alone is not enough information on which to base an impact determination. In addition to considering estimates of the number of marine mammals that might be “taken” through behavioral harassment, we consider other factors, such as the likely nature of any responses (e.g., intensity, duration), the context of any responses (e.g., critical reproductive time or location, migration), as well as the number and nature of estimated Level A harassment takes, the number of estimated mortalities, and effects on habitat.

    Pile driving activities associated with the wharf construction project, as outlined previously, have the potential to disturb or displace marine mammals. Specifically, the specified activities may result in take, in the form of Level B harassment (behavioral disturbance) only, from underwater sounds generated from pile driving. Potential takes could occur if individuals of these species are present in the ensonified zone when pile driving is happening.

    No injury, serious injury, or mortality is anticipated given the nature of the activities and measures designed to minimize the possibility of injury to marine mammals. The potential for these outcomes is minimized through the construction method and the implementation of the planned mitigation measures. Specifically, vibratory hammers will be the primary method of installation (impact driving is included only as a contingency and is not expected to be required), and this activity does not have the potential to cause injury to marine mammals due to the relatively low source levels produced (less than 180 dB) and the lack of potentially injurious source characteristics. Impact pile driving produces short, sharp pulses with higher peak levels and much sharper rise time to reach those peaks. If impact driving is necessary, implementation of soft start and shutdown zones significantly reduces any possibility of injury. Given sufficient “notice” through use of soft start (for impact driving), marine mammals are expected to move away from a sound source that is annoying prior to its becoming potentially injurious. Environmental conditions in the confined and protected Mayport turning basin mean that marine mammal detection ability by trained observers is high, enabling a high rate of success in implementation of shutdowns to avoid injury.

    Effects on individuals that are taken by Level B harassment, on the basis of reports in the literature as well as monitoring from other similar activities, will likely be limited to reactions such as increased swimming speeds, increased surfacing time, or decreased foraging (if such activity were occurring) (e.g., Thorson and Reyff, 2006; HDR, Inc., 2012). Most likely, individuals will simply move away from the sound source and be temporarily displaced from the areas of pile driving, although even this reaction has been observed primarily only in association with impact pile driving. The pile driving activities analyzed here are similar to, or less impactful than, numerous other construction activities conducted in San Francisco Bay and in the Puget Sound region, which have taken place with no reported injuries or mortality to marine mammals, and no known long-term adverse consequences from behavioral harassment. Repeated exposures of individuals to levels of sound that may cause Level B harassment are unlikely to result in hearing impairment or to significantly disrupt foraging behavior. Thus, even repeated Level B harassment of some small subset of the overall stock is unlikely to result in any significant realized decrease in viability for the affected individuals, and thus would not result in any adverse impact to the stock as a whole. Level B harassment will be reduced to the level of least practicable impact through use of mitigation measures described herein and, if sound produced by project activities is sufficiently disturbing, animals are likely to simply avoid the turning basin while the activity is occurring.

    In summary, this negligible impact analysis is founded on the following factors: (1) The possibility of injury, serious injury, or mortality may reasonably be considered discountable; (2) the anticipated incidents of Level B harassment consist of, at worst, temporary modifications in behavior; (3) the absence of any significant habitat within the project area, including known areas or features of special significance for foraging or reproduction; (4) the presumed efficacy of the proposed mitigation measures in reducing the effects of the specified activity to the level of least practicable impact. In addition, these stocks are not listed under the ESA, although coastal bottlenose dolphins are designated as depleted under the MMPA. In combination, we believe that these factors, as well as the available body of evidence from other similar activities, demonstrate that the potential effects of the specified activity will have only short-term effects on individuals. The specified activity is not expected to impact rates of recruitment or survival and will therefore not result in population-level impacts.

    Based on the analysis contained herein of the likely effects of the specified activity on marine mammals and their habitat, and taking into consideration the implementation of the proposed monitoring and mitigation measures, we preliminarily find that the total marine mammal take from the Navy's wharf construction activities will have a negligible impact on the affected marine mammal species or stocks.

    Small Numbers Analysis

    As described previously, of the 304 incidents of behavioral harassment predicted to occur for bottlenose dolphin, we have no information allowing us to parse those predicted incidents amongst the three stocks of bottlenose dolphin that may occur in the project area. Therefore, we assessed the total number of predicted incidents of take against the best abundance estimate for each stock, as though the total would occur for the stock in question. For two of the bottlenose dolphin stocks, the total predicted number of incidents of take authorized would be considered small—approximately three percent for the southern migratory stock and less than 25 percent for the northern Florida coastal stock—even if each estimated taking occurred to a new individual. This is an extremely unlikely scenario as, for bottlenose dolphins in estuarine and nearshore waters, there is likely to be some overlap in individuals present day-to-day.

    The total number of authorized takes proposed for bottlenose dolphins, if assumed to accrue solely to new individuals of the JES stock, is higher relative to the total stock abundance, which is currently considered unknown. However, these numbers represent the estimated incidents of take, not the number of individuals taken. That is, it is highly likely that a relatively small subset of JES bottlenose dolphins would be harassed by project activities. JES bottlenose dolphins range from Cumberland Sound at the Georgia-Florida border south to approximately Palm Coast, Florida, an area spanning over 120 linear km of coastline and including habitat consisting of complex inshore and estuarine waterways. JES dolphins, divided by Caldwell (2001) into Northern and Southern groups, show strong site fidelity and, although members of both groups have been observed outside their preferred areas, it is likely that the majority of JES dolphins would not occur within waters ensonified by project activities. Further, although the largest area of ensonification is predicted to extend up to 7.5 km offshore from NSM, estuarine dolphins are generally considered as restricted to inshore waters and only1-2 km offshore. In summary, JES dolphins are (1) known to form two groups and exhibit strong site fidelity (i.e., individuals do not generally range throughout the recognized overall JES stock range); (2) would not occur at all in a significant portion of the larger ZOI extending offshore from NSM; and (3) the specified activity will be stationary within an enclosed basin not recognized as an area of any special significance that would serve to attract or aggregate dolphins. We therefore believe that the estimated numbers of takes, were they to occur, likely represent repeated exposures of a much smaller number of bottlenose dolphins and that these estimated incidents of take represent small numbers of bottlenose dolphins.

    Based on the analysis contained herein of the likely effects of the specified activity on marine mammals and their habitat, and taking into consideration the implementation of the mitigation and monitoring measures, we preliminarily find that small numbers of marine mammals will be taken relative to the populations of the affected species or stocks.

    Impact on Availability of Affected Species for Taking for Subsistence Uses

    There are no relevant subsistence uses of marine mammals implicated by this action. Therefore, we have determined that the total taking of affected species or stocks would not have an unmitigable adverse impact on the availability of such species or stocks for taking for subsistence purposes.

    Endangered Species Act (ESA)

    No marine mammal species listed under the ESA are expected to be affected by these activities. Therefore, we have determined that section 7 consultation under the ESA are not required.

    National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

    In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), as implemented by the regulations published by the Council on Environmental Quality (40 CFR parts 1500-1508), the Navy prepared an Environmental Assessment (EA) to consider the direct, indirect and cumulative effects to the human environment resulting from the pier maintenance project. NMFS made the Navy's EA available to the public for review and comment, in relation to its suitability for adoption by NMFS in order to assess the impacts to the human environment of issuance of an IHA to the Navy. Also in compliance with NEPA and the CEQ regulations, as well as NOAA Administrative Order 216-6, NMFS has reviewed the Navy's EA, determined it to be sufficient, and adopted that EA and signed a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) on November 20, 2013.

    We have reviewed the Navy's application for a renewed IHA for ongoing construction activities for 2015-16 and preliminary results of required marine mammal monitoring. Based on that review, we have determined that the proposed action is very similar to that considered in the previous IHA. In addition, no significant new circumstances or information relevant to environmental concerns have been identified. Thus, we have determined preliminarily that the preparation of a new or supplemental NEPA document is not necessary, and will, after review of public comments determine whether or not to reaffirm our 2013 FONSI. The 2013 NEPA documents are available for review at www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental/construction.htm.

    Proposed Authorization

    As a result of these preliminary determinations, we propose to authorize the take of marine mammals incidental to the Navy's wharf project, provided the previously mentioned mitigation, monitoring, and reporting requirements are incorporated. Specific language from the proposed IHA is provided next.

    This section contains a draft of the IHA. The wording contained in this section is proposed for inclusion in the IHA (if issued).

    1. This Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) is valid for one year from the date of issuance.

    2. This IHA is valid only for pile driving activities associated with the Wharf C-2 Recapitalization Project at Naval Station Mayport, Florida.

    3. General Conditions

    (a) A copy of this IHA must be in the possession of the Navy, its designees, and work crew personnel operating under the authority of this IHA.

    (b) The species authorized for taking is the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus).

    (c) The taking, by Level B harassment only, is limited to the species listed in condition 3(b). See Table 1 for numbers of take authorized.

    Table 1—Authorized Take Numbers Species Authorized take Bottlenose dolphin 304

    (d) The taking by injury (Level A harassment), serious injury, or death of the species listed in condition 3(b) of the Authorization or any taking of any other species of marine mammal is prohibited and may result in the modification, suspension, or revocation of this IHA.

    (e) The Navy shall conduct briefings between construction supervisors and crews, marine mammal monitoring team, and Navy staff prior to the start of all pile driving activity, and when new personnel join the work, in order to explain responsibilities, communication procedures, marine mammal monitoring protocol, and operational procedures.

    4. Mitigation Measures

    The holder of this Authorization is required to implement the following mitigation measures:

    (a) For all pile driving, the Navy shall implement a minimum shutdown zone of 15 m radius around the pile. If a marine mammal comes within or approaches the shutdown zone, such operations shall cease. For impact driving of steel piles, the minimum shutdown zone shall be of 40 m radius.

    (b) The Navy shall establish monitoring locations as described below. Please also refer to the Marine Mammal Monitoring Plan (Monitoring Plan; attached).

    i. For all pile driving activities, a minimum of two observers shall be deployed, with one positioned to achieve optimal monitoring of the shutdown zone and the second positioned to achieve optimal monitoring of surrounding waters of the turning basin, the entrance to that basin, and portions of the Atlantic Ocean. If practicable, the second observer should be deployed to an elevated position, preferably opposite Wharf C-2 and with clear sight lines to the wharf and out the entrance channel.

    ii. These observers shall record all observations of marine mammals, regardless of distance from the pile being driven, as well as behavior and potential behavioral reactions of the animals. Observations within the turning basin shall be distinguished from those in the entrance channel and nearshore waters of the Atlantic Ocean.

    iii. All observers shall be equipped for communication of marine mammal observations amongst themselves and to other relevant personnel (e.g., those necessary to effect activity delay or shutdown).

    (c) Monitoring shall take place from fifteen minutes prior to initiation of pile driving activity through thirty minutes post-completion of pile driving activity. Pre-activity monitoring shall be conducted for fifteen minutes to ensure that the shutdown zone is clear of marine mammals, and pile driving may commence when observers have declared the shutdown zone clear of marine mammals. In the event of a delay or shutdown of activity resulting from marine mammals in the shutdown zone, animals shall be allowed to remain in the shutdown zone (i.e., must leave of their own volition) and their behavior shall be monitored and documented. Monitoring shall occur throughout the time required to drive a pile. The shutdown zone must be determined to be clear during periods of good visibility (i.e., the entire shutdown zone and surrounding waters must be visible to the naked eye).

    (d) If a marine mammal approaches or enters the shutdown zone, all pile driving activities at that location shall be halted. If pile driving is halted or delayed due to the presence of a marine mammal, the activity may not commence or resume until either the animal has voluntarily left and been visually confirmed beyond the shutdown zone or fifteen minutes have passed without re-detection of the animal.

    (e) Monitoring shall be conducted by qualified observers, as described in the Monitoring Plan. Trained observers shall be placed from the best vantage point(s) practicable to monitor for marine mammals and implement shutdown or delay procedures when applicable through communication with the equipment operator. Observer training must be provided prior to project start and in accordance with the monitoring plan, and shall include instruction on species identification (sufficient to distinguish the species listed in 3(b)), description and categorization of observed behaviors and interpretation of behaviors that may be construed as being reactions to the specified activity, proper completion of data forms, and other basic components of biological monitoring, including tracking of observed animals or groups of animals such that repeat sound exposures may be attributed to individuals (to the extent possible).

    (f) The Navy shall use soft start techniques recommended by NMFS for impact pile driving. Soft start requires contractors to provide an initial set of strikes at reduced energy, followed by a thirty-second waiting period, then two subsequent reduced energy strike sets. Soft start shall be implemented at the start of each day's impact pile driving and at any time following cessation of impact pile driving for a period of thirty minutes or longer.

    (g) Pile driving shall only be conducted during daylight hours.

    5. Monitoring

    The holder of this Authorization is required to conduct marine mammal monitoring during pile driving activity. Marine mammal monitoring and reporting shall be conducted in accordance with the Monitoring Plan.

    (a) The Navy shall collect sighting data and behavioral responses to pile driving for marine mammal species observed in the region of activity during the period of activity. All observers shall be trained in marine mammal identification and behaviors, and shall have no other construction-related tasks while conducting monitoring.

    (b) For all marine mammal monitoring, the information shall be recorded as described in the Monitoring Plan.

    6. Reporting

    The holder of this Authorization is required to:

    (a) Submit a draft report on all monitoring conducted under the IHA within ninety days of the completion of marine mammal monitoring, or sixty days prior to the issuance of any subsequent IHA for projects at NSM, whichever comes first. A final report shall be prepared and submitted within thirty days following resolution of comments on the draft report from NMFS. This report must contain the informational elements described in the Monitoring Plan, at minimum (see attached), and shall also include:

    i. Detailed information about any implementation of shutdowns, including the distance of animals to the pile and description of specific actions that ensued and resulting behavior of the animal, if any.

    ii. Description of attempts to distinguish between the number of individual animals taken and the number of incidents of take, such as ability to track groups or individuals.

    iii. An estimated total take estimate extrapolated from the number of marine mammals observed during the course of construction activities, if necessary.

    (b) Reporting injured or dead marine mammals:

    i. In the unanticipated event that the specified activity clearly causes the take of a marine mammal in a manner prohibited by this IHA, such as an injury (Level A harassment), serious injury, or mortality, Navy shall immediately cease the specified activities and report the incident to the Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, and the Southeast Regional Stranding Coordinator, NMFS. The report must include the following information:

    A. Time and date of the incident;

    B. Description of the incident;

    C. Environmental conditions (e.g., wind speed and direction, Beaufort sea state, cloud cover, and visibility);

    D. Description of all marine mammal observations in the 24 hours preceding the incident;

    E. Species identification or description of the animal(s) involved;

    F. Fate of the animal(s); and

    G. Photographs or video footage of the animal(s).

    Activities shall not resume until NMFS is able to review the circumstances of the prohibited take. NMFS will work with Navy to determine what measures are necessary to minimize the likelihood of further prohibited take and ensure MMPA compliance. Navy may not resume their activities until notified by NMFS.

    ii. In the event that Navy discovers an injured or dead marine mammal, and the lead observer determines that the cause of the injury or death is unknown and the death is relatively recent (e.g., in less than a moderate state of decomposition), Navy shall immediately report the incident to the Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, and the Southeast Regional Stranding Coordinator, NMFS.

    The report must include the same information identified in 6(b)(i) of this IHA. Activities may continue while NMFS reviews the circumstances of the incident. NMFS will work with Navy to determine whether additional mitigation measures or modifications to the activities are appropriate.

    iii. In the event that Navy discovers an injured or dead marine mammal, and the lead observer determines that the injury or death is not associated with or related to the activities authorized in the IHA (e.g., previously wounded animal, carcass with moderate to advanced decomposition, scavenger damage), Navy shall report the incident to the Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, and the Southeast Regional Stranding Coordinator, NMFS, within 24 hours of the discovery. Navy shall provide photographs or video footage or other documentation of the stranded animal sighting to NMFS.

    7. This Authorization may be modified, suspended or withdrawn if the holder fails to abide by the conditions prescribed herein, or if NMFS determines the authorized taking is having more than a negligible impact on the species or stock of affected marine mammals.

    Request for Public Comments

    We request comment on our analyses, the draft authorization, and any other aspect of this Notice of Proposed IHAs for Navy's wharf construction activities. Please include with your comments any supporting data or literature citations to help inform our final decision on Navy's request for an MMPA authorization.

    Dated: July 31, 2015. Angela Somma, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19184 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XE029 Pacific Islands Pelagic Fisheries; American Samoa Longline Limited Entry Program AGENCY:

    National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Notice; availability of permits.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS announces that 12 American Samoa pelagic longline limited entry permits in three vessel size classes are available for 2015. NMFS is accepting applications for these available permits.

    DATES:

    NMFS must receive completed permit applications and payment by December 3, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Request a blank application form from the NMFS Pacific Islands Regional Office (PIR), 1845 Wasp Blvd., Bldg. 176, Honolulu, HI 96818, or the PIR Web site http://www.fpir.noaa.gov/Library/SFD/Samoa_LE_App_Fillable_02Feb15.pdf. Mail your completed application and payment to: ASLE Permits, NOAA NMFS PIR, 1845 Wasp Blvd., Bldg. 176, Honolulu, HI 96818.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Walter Ikehara, Sustainable Fisheries, NMFS PIR, tel 808-725-5175, fax 808-725-5215, or email [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Federal regulations at 50 CFR 665.816 allow NMFS to issue new permits for the American Samoa pelagic longline limited entry program if the number of permits in a size class falls below the maximum allowed. At least 12 permits are available for issuance, as follows:

    • Nine in Class A (vessels less than or equal to 40 ft in overall length);

    • Two in Class B (over 40 ft to 50 ft); and

    • One in Class D (over 70 ft).

    Please note that the number of available permits may change before the application period closes.

    Each application must be complete for NMFS to consider it. An application must include the completed and signed application form, evidence of documented participation in the fishery, and non-refundable payment for the application-processing fee.

    If NMFS receives more completed applications than the available permits for a given permit class, NMFS will prioritize applicants using only the information in the applications and documentation provided by the applicants. If an applicant requests NMFS, in writing, that NMFS use NMFS longline logbook data as evidence of documented participation, the applicant must specify the qualifying vessel, official number, and month and year of the logbook records. NMFS will not conduct an unlimited search for records.

    Applicants with the earliest documented participation in the fishery on a Class A sized vessel will receive the highest priorities for obtaining permits in any size class, followed by applicants with the earliest documented participation in Classes B, C, and D, in that order. In the event of a tie in the priority ranking between two or more applicants, NMFS will rank higher in priority the applicant whose second documented participation is earlier. Detailed criteria for prioritization of eligible applicants are in the regulations at 50 CFR 665.816(g).

    NMFS must receive applications by December 3, 2015 to be considered for a permit (see ADDRESSES). NMFS will not accept applications received after that date.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19102 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XD330 Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to a Breakwater Replacement Project in Eastport, Maine AGENCY:

    National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Notice; revision of an incidental harassment authorization.

    SUMMARY:

    Notice is hereby given that we have revised an incidental harassment authorization (IHA) issued to the Maine Department of Transportation (ME DOT) to incidentally harass, by Level B harassment only, small numbers of four species of marine mammals during construction activities associated with a breakwater replacement project in Eastport, Maine. The project has been delayed and the effective dates revised accordingly.

    DATES:

    This authorization is now effective from July 20, 2015, through July 19, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Shane Guan, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, (301) 427-8401.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    On February 21, 2014, NMFS received an application from ME DOT requesting an IHA for the take, by Level B harassment, of small numbers of harbor seals (Phoca vitulina), gray seals (Halichoerus grypus), harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena), and Atlantic white-sided dolphins (Lagenorhynchus acutus) incidental to in-water construction activities in Eastport, Maine. On July 31, 2014, NMFS published a Federal Register notice (FR 79 44407) for the proposed IHA, and subsequently published final notice of our issuance of the IHA on October 1, 2014 (79 FR 59247), effective from October 1, 2014, through September 30, 2015. In June 2015, ME DOT informed NMFS that no work had occurred relevant to the IHA specified activity due to difficulties in developing a passive acoustic monitoring plan for sound source verification of test pile driving. Accordingly, ME DOT requested that NMFS revise the effective date of the IHA to a one-year period beginning on July 20, 2015, to accommodate the delayed schedule, with no other changes.

    Summary of the Activity

    The proposed Eastport breakwater replacement project will replace an open pier that is supported by 151 piles, consisting of steel pipe piles, reinforced concrete pile caps, and a pre-stressed plank deck with structural overlay. The proposed approach pier will be 40 ft by 300 ft and the proposed main pier section that would be parallel to the shoreline will be 50 ft by 400 ft.

    The replacement pier will consist of two different sections. The approach pier will be replaced in kind by placing fill inside of a sheet pile enclosure, supported by driven piles. The approach section will consist of sheet piles that are driven just outside of the existing sheet piles. The sheet piles can be installed by use of a vibratory hammer only. The main pier, fender system, and wave fence system will be pile supported with piles ranging from 16 inch-36 inch diameter pipe piles. These piles will be driven with a vibratory hammer to a point and must be seated with an impact hammer to ensure stability.

    The vibratory hammer will drive the pile by applying a rapidly alternating force to the pile by rotating eccentric weights resulting in a downward vibratory force on the pile. The vibratory hammer will be attached to the pile head with a clamp. The vertical vibration in the pile functions by disturbing or liquefying the soil next to the pile, causing the soil particles to lose their frictional grip on the pile. The pile moves downward under its own weight, plus the weight of the hammer. It takes approximately one to three minutes to drive one pile. An impact hammer will be used to ensure the piles are embedded deep enough into the substrate to remain stable for the life of the pier. The impact hammer works by dropping a mass on top of the pile repeatedly to drive it into the substrate. Diesel combustion is used to push the mass upwards and allow it to fall onto the pile again to drive it.

    Findings

    Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA)—As required by the MMPA, for the original IHA, we determined that (1) the required mitigation measures are sufficient to reduce the effects of the specified activities to the level of least practicable impact; (2) the authorized takes will have a negligible impact on the affected marine mammal species; (3) the authorized takes represent small numbers relative to the affected stock abundances; and (4) the ME DOT's activities will not have an unmitigable adverse impact on taking for subsistence purposes as no relevant subsistence uses of marine mammals are implicated by this action. No substantive changes have occurred in the interim.

    National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)—In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), as implemented by the regulations published by the Council on Environmental Quality (40 CFR parts 1500-1508), and NOAA Administrative Order 216-6, NMFS prepared an Environmental Assessment (EA) to consider the environmental impacts of issuance of a one-year IHA. A Finding of No Significant Impact was signed on September 24, 2014. No substantive changes have occurred in the interim.

    Endangered Species Act (ESA)—No species listed under the ESA are expected to be affected by these activities. Therefore, NMFS determined that a section 7 consultation under the ESA is not required. No substantive changes have occurred in the interim.

    Summary of the Revision

    Construction activities have been delayed for the project due to difficulties in developing a passive acoustic monitoring plan. No in-water work has occurred, including all aspects of the specified activity considered in our issuance of the IHA. The original IHA issued is a one-year IHA with no consideration of seasonality in timing any component of the specified activity. Therefore, shifting the effective dates of the IHA by approximately ten months to accommodate the ME DOT's delayed schedule for this project has no effect on our analysis of project impacts and does not affect our findings. No new information is available that would substantively affect our analyses under the MMPA, NEPA, or ESA. All mitigation, monitoring, and reporting measures described in our notice of issuance of the IHA remain in effect. The species for which take was authorized and the numbers of incidents of take authorized are unchanged.

    As a result of the foregoing, we have revised the IHA issued to the ME DOT to conduct the specified activities in Eastport, Maine. Originally valid for one year, from October 1, 2014, through September 30, 2015, the IHA now becomes effective on July 20, 2015, and is valid for one year, until July 19, 2016.

    Dated: July 29, 2015. Perry Gayaldo, Deputy Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19113 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Telecommunications and Information Administration Community Broadband Summit AGENCY:

    National Telecommunications and Information Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Notice of open meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), through the BroadbandUSA program, in conjunction with Next Century Cities will hold a one-day regional broadband summit, “Digital New England,” to share information to help communities build their broadband capacity and utilization. The summit will present best practices and lessons learned from broadband network infrastructure build-outs and digital inclusion programs from Maine and surrounding states, including projects funded by NTIA's Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) and State Broadband Initiative (SBI) grant programs funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.1 The summit will also explore effective business and partnership models.

    1 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, Public Law 111-5, 123 Stat. 115 (2009).

    DATES:

    The Digital New England Broadband Summit will be held on September 28, 2015, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting will be held in the Holiday Inn by the Bay, Portland, Maine at 88 Spring Street, Portland, Maine 04101.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Barbara Brown, National Telecommunications and Information Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, Room 4628, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-4374; email: [email protected] Please direct media inquiries to NTIA's Office of Public Affairs, (202) 482-7002; email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    NTIA's BroadbandUSA initiative provides expert advice and field-proven tools for assessing broadband adoption, planning new infrastructure and engaging a wide range of partners in broadband projects. BroadbandUSA convenes workshops on a regular basis to bring stakeholders together to discuss ways to improve broadband policies, share best practices, and connect communities to other federal agencies and funding sources for the purpose of expanding broadband infrastructure and adoption throughout America's communities.

    The Digital Broadband Summit will feature subject matter experts from NTIA's BroadbandUSA initiative and include NTIA presentations that discuss lessons learned through the implementation of the BTOP and SBI grants. A panel will explore key elements required for successful broadband projects using a mix of regional examples. Topics will include marketing/demand aggregation, outreach, coordination with government agencies, partnership strategies, construction and oversight. A second panel will explore why broadband matters in comprehensive community planning and will provide real-world examples of how broadband applications help communities improve economic development, workforce development, and educational opportunities. A third panel will examine business model options, including private networks, public/private partnerships, co-ops and municipal systems. Panelists will provide tips to communities on how to research funding options, make a compelling case to funders, and leverage multiple federal, state, and nonprofit funding streams. Community leaders interested in expanding economic development opportunities or commercial providers interested in expanding their markets, among others, should find the information presented at the summit valuable as they plan their broadband projects.

    The summit will be open to the public and press. Pre-registration is required, and space is limited. Portions of the meeting will be webcast. Information on how to pre-register for the meeting, and how to access the free, live Webcast will be available on NTIA's Web site: http://www.ntia.doc.gov/other-publication/2015/NEsummit. NTIA will ask registrants to provide their first and last names and email addresses for both registration purposes and to receive any updates on the summit. If capacity for the meeting is reached, NTIA will maintain a waiting list and will inform those on the waiting list if space becomes available. Meeting updates, changes in the agenda, if any, and relevant documents will be also available on NTIA's Web site at http://www.ntia.doc.gov/other-publication/2015/NEsummit.

    The public meeting is physically accessible to people with disabilities. Individuals requiring accommodations, such as language interpretation or other ancillary aids, are asked to notify Barbara Brown at the contact information listed above at least five (5) business days before the meeting.

    Dated: July 31, 2015. Kathy D. Smith, Chief Counsel, National Telecommunications and Information Administration.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19229 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-60-P
    DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Department of the Air Force United States Air Force Scientific Advisory Board Notice of Meeting AGENCY:

    Department of the Air Force, Air Force Scientific Advisory Board, DOD.

    ACTION:

    Meeting Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    Under the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act of 1972 (5 U.S.C., Appendix, as amended), the Government in the Sunshine Act of 1976 (5 U.S.C. 552b, as amended), and 41 CFR 102-3.150, the Department of Defense hereby announces that the United States Air Force (USAF) Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) Fall Board meeting will take place from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on September 23, 2015 at the SAFTAS Conference and Innovation Conference Center, located on the plaza level of 1550 Crystal Drive in Crystal City, Virgina. The purpose of this Air Force Scientific Advisory Board quarterly meeting is to receive strategic level briefings related to Science and Technology from Air Force Senior Leaders, and to initiate planning for FY16 studies. In accordance with 5 U.S.C. 552b, as amended, and 41 CFR 102-3.155, several sessions of the USAF SAB Fall Board meeting will be closed to the public because they will discuss classified information covered by section 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(1). The session that will be open to the general public will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. on September 23, 2015.

    Any member of the public that wishes to attend this meeting or provide input to the USAF SAB must contact the Designated Federal Officer at the phone number or email address listed below at least five working days prior to the meeting date. Please ensure that you submit your written statement in accordance with 41 CFR 102-3.140(c) and section 10(a)(3) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act. Statements being submitted in response to the agenda mentioned in this notice must be received by the Designated Federal Officer at the address listed below at least five calendar days prior to the meeting commencement date. The Designated Federal Officer will review all timely submissions and respond to them prior to the start of the meeting identified in this noice. Written statements received after this date may not be considered by the USAF SAB until the next scheduled meeting.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Major Mike Rigoni at, [email protected] or 240-612-5504, United States Air Force Scientific Advisory Board, 1500 West Perimeter Road, Ste. #3300, Joint Base Andrews, MD 20762.

    Henry Williams, Acting Air Force Federal Register Liaison Officer, DAF.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19198 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 5001-10-P
    DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Office of the Secretary [Docket ID: DoD-2014-OS-0156] Proposed Collection; Comment Request AGENCY:

    Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, DoD.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    In compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness announces a proposed public information collection and seeks public comment on the provisions thereof. Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed information collection; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the information collection on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

    DATES:

    Consideration will be given to all comments received by October 5, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, identified by docket number and title, by any of the following methods:

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

    Mail: Department of Defense, Office of the Deputy Chief Management Officer, Directorate of Oversight and Compliance, Regulatory and Audit Matters Office, 9010 Defense Pentagon, Washington, DC 20301-9010.

    Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name, docket number and title for this Federal Register document. The general policy for comments and other submissions from members of the public is to make these submissions available for public viewing on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov as they are received without change, including any personal identifiers or contact information.

    Any associated forms for this collection may be located within this same electronic docket and downloaded for review/testing. Follow the instructions at http://www.regulations.gov for submitting comments. Please submit comments on any given form identified by docket number, form number, and title.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    To request more information on this proposed information collection or to obtain a copy of the proposal and associated collection instruments, please write to the Office of Family Readiness Policy, ATTN: Program Manager, Spouse Education & Career Opportunities Program, 4800 Mark Center Drive, Suite 03G15, Alexandria, VA 22350-2300.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title; Associated Form; and OMB Number: Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts Scholarship (MyCAA); OMB Control Number 0704-XXXX.

    Needs and Uses: This information collection requirement is necessary to allow eligible military spouses to submit information for approval of financial scholarships to pursue portable careers.

    To Utilize MyCAA Scholarship

    Affected Public: Military spouse users of MyCAA.

    Annual Burden Hours: 63,752.

    Number of Respondents: 85,033.

    Responses per Respondent: 1.

    Annual Responses: 85,033.

    Average Burden per Response: 45 minutes.

    Frequency: On occasion.

    To Apply for Participation in the MyCAA Program

    Affected Public: Schools.

    Annual Burden Hours: 93.

    Number of Respondents: 370.

    Responses per Respondent: 1.

    Annual Responses: 370.

    Average Burden per Response: 15 minutes.

    Frequency: Once.

    The Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts Scholarship (MyCAA) is a career development and employment assistance program sponsored by the Department of Defense (DoD) to assist military spouses pursue licenses, certificates, certifications or associate's degrees (excluding associate's degrees in general studies, liberal arts, and interdisciplinary studies that do not have a concentration) necessary for gainful employment in high demand, high growth portable career fields and occupations; to provide a record of educational endeavors and progress of military spouses participating in education services; and to manage the tuition assistance scholarship, track enrollments and funding and to facilitate communication with participants via email. Records may also be used as a management tool for statistical analysis, tracking, reporting, evaluating program effectiveness and conducting research.

    Dated: July 31, 2015. Aaron Siegel, Alternate OSD Federal Register, Liaison Officer, Department of Defense.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19199 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 5001-06-P
    DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Department of the Army; Corps of Engineers Board on Coastal Engineering Research AGENCY:

    Department of the Army, DoD.

    ACTION:

    Notice of Advisory Committee meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of the Army is publishing this notice to announce the following Federal advisory committee meeting of the Board on Coastal Engineering Research. This meeting is open to the public.

    DATES AND LOCATION:

    The Board on Coastal Engineering Research will meet from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. on September 1, 2015, and reconvene from 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on September 2, 2015. The Executive Session of the Board will convene from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. on September 3, 2015. All sessions will be held Rooms 175-185, Jadwin Building, U.S. Army Engineer District, Galveston, 2000 Fort Point Road, Galveston, TX 77550. All sessions are open to the public. For more information about the Board, please visit http://chl.erdc.usace.army.mil/cerb.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Mr. José E. Sánchez, Alternate Designated Federal Officer (ADFO), U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center, Waterways Experiment Station, 3909 Halls Ferry Road, Vicksburg, MS 39180-6199, phone 601-634-2001, or [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The meeting is being held under the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) of 1972 (5 U.S.C., Appendix, as amended), the Government in the Sunshine Act of 1976 (5 U.S.C. 552b, as amended), and 41 CFR 102-3.150. The Board on Coastal Engineering Research provides broad policy guidance and reviews plans for the conduct of research and the development of research projects in consonance with the needs of the coastal engineering field and the objectives of the U.S. Army Chief of Engineers.

    Purpose of the Meeting: The theme of the meeting is Coastal Navigation—Driving the U.S. Economy by Integrating Marine Transportation Infrastructure with Natural Coastal Systems. The purpose of the meeting is to identify the U.S. Gulf region's engineering challenges with nature and nature-based systems to enhance the resilience of coastal systems and marine transportation infrastructure and sustain the values they produce and to identify research and development needs to enable the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Nation to deliver innovative solutions to meet these challenges and opportunities.

    Agenda: On Tuesday morning, September 1, 2015, panel presentations will deal with the Integrated Coastal and Navigation Systems of the Texas Coast. Presentations will include The Texas Coast: Shoring Up Our Future—Implementation Challenges and Coastal Engineering Concerns; Storm Hazard Resilience Requirements of the Texas Coastal Industry's Energy Infrastructure and Implications for Modernizing Maritime Transportation Connections; Tackling the Most Challenging Built and Natural Infrastructure Sustainability and Resilience Problems of the Texas Coast; Leveraging Natural Systems and Functions for Delivering a Spectrum of Ecosystem Services, Restoration of Half Moon Reef in Matagorda Bay; The Galveston Bay Plan—A Comprehensive Conservation Management Plan for Galveston Bay, Galveston Bay Estuary Program: Regional Water and Sediment Quality Monitoring and Research Action Plan; USACE Engineering with Nature and Regional Sediment Management “Proving Ground” Initiatives; and a presentation from the Texas A&M University Coastal Engineering Department. There will be an optional field trip Tuesday afternoon, which is open to the public. It includes a bus tour to a beach nourishment project; inspection of integrated petrochemical facility, navigation, and structural flood risk management infrastructure; inspection of Port of Galveston facilities and cruise terminal with non-structural flood proofing; and a ferry ride across Bolivar Pass and return for inspection of potential surge gate location across Houston-Galveston Navigation Channel.

    On Wednesday morning, September 2, 2015, the Board will reconvene to discuss Coastal Engineering with Nature and Regional Sediment Management. Presentations will include Performance Trends of South Padre Island Onshore and Nearshore Placement of Navigation Channel Maintenance Dredging Materials, Brazos Island Harbor; Challenges and Opportunities of In-Bay Sediment Placement in Mobile Bay: Science, Technology and Research Needs; Use of USACE Enterprise Tools for Life Cycle Systems Management of Dredged Materials: Gulf Intracoastal Waterway Pilot Project; and The Future of Nearshore Processes Research: Implementing a Research Plan by the Nearshore Processes Community. Wednesday morning and afternoon session continues with the Integrated Coastal and Navigation Systems panel. Presentations include Dredging Equipment/Environmental Windows Optimization of Navigation Systems in the Gulf of Mexico; Coastal and Navigation Asset Management: System Optimization Based on Cargo Flows for the Houston-Galveston Navigation Channel; Informing Coastal Vulnerabilities with World Class Science: Texas Coastal Ocean Observation Network; Research Needs on the Texas Coast for Resilient Regionally Integrated Multiple Lines of Defense for Coastal Storm Risk Management and Navigation Sustainability; Research Needs on a Hurricane Surge Barrier for the Houston-Galveston Bay Region; Research Needs of the Texas Protection and Restoration Project; and Navigation and Coastal Tools for the US. Gulf Coast: Capabilities and Research Needs.

    The Board will meet in Executive Session to discuss ongoing initiatives and future actions on Thursday morning, September 3, 2015.

    Meeting Accessibility: Pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b, as amended, and 41 CFR 102-3.140 through 102-3.165, and subject to the availability of space, the meeting is open to the public. Because seating capacity is limited, advance registration is required. Registration can be accomplished as set forth below. Because the meeting will be held in a Federal Government facility, security screening is required. A photo ID is required, and the name of each person seeking entry onto the facility will be checked against the list of names of those persons who have registered to attend the meeting. The guards reserve the right to inspect vehicles seeking to enter the facility. Individuals will be directed to the District Office building, where further security screening is required.

    Oral participation by the public is scheduled for 3:45 p.m. on Wednesday, September 2, 2015. The Galveston District is fully handicap accessible. For additional information about public access procedures, please contact Mr. Sánchez, the Board's ADFO, at the email address or telephone number listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section.

    Registration: Individuals who wish to attend the meeting of the Board must register with the ADFO by email, the preferred method of contact, no later than August 28, using the electronic mail contact information found in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section, above. The communication should include the registrant's full name, title, affiliation or employer, email address, and daytime phone number. If applicable, include written comments or statements with the registration email.

    Written Comments and Statements: Pursuant to 41 CFR 102-3.015(j) and 102-3.140 and section 10(a)(3) of the FACA, the public or interested organizations may submit written comments or statements to the Board, in response to the stated agenda of the open meeting or in regard to the Board's mission in general. Written comments or statements should be submitted to Mr. José E. Sánchez, ADFO, via electronic mail, the preferred mode of submission, as the address listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section above. Each page of the comment or statement must include the author's name, title or affiliation, address, and daytime phone number. The ADFO will review all submitted written comments or statements and provide them to members of the Board for their consideration. Written comments or statements being submitted in response to the agenda set forth in this notice must be received by the ADFO at least five business days prior to the meeting to be considered by the Board. The ADFO will review all timely submitted written comments or statements with the Board Chairperson and ensure the comments are provided to all members of the Board before the meeting. Written comments or statements received after this date may not be provided to the Board until its next meeting.

    Verbal Comments: Pursuant to 41 CFR 102-3.140d, the Board is not obligated to allow a member of the public to speak or otherwise address the Board during the meeting. Members of the public will be permitted to make verbal comments during the Board meeting only at the time and in the manner described below. If a member of the public is interested in making a verbal comment at the open meeting, that individual must submit a request, with a brief statement of the subject matter to be addressed by the comment, at least five business days in advance to the Board's ADFO, via electronic mail, the preferred mode of submission, at the address listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section. The ADFO will log each request, in the order received, and in consultation with the Board Chair, determine whether the subject matter of each comment is relevant to the Board's mission and/or the topics to be addressed in this public meeting. A 30-minute period near the end of the meeting will be available for verbal public comments. Members of the public who have requested to make a verbal comment, and whose comments have been deemed relevant under the process described above, will be allotted no more than five minutes during this period, and will be invited to speak in the order in which their requests were received by the ADFO.

    José E. Sánchez, Director, Coastal and Hydraulics Laboratory, Alternate Designated Federal Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19242 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3720-58-P
    DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION [Docket No.: ED-2015-ICCD-0064] Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Health Education Assistance Loan (HEAL) Program: Forms AGENCY:

    Federal Student Aid (FSA), Department of Education (ED).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. chapter 3501 et seq.), ED is proposing a revision of an existing information collection.

    DATES:

    Interested persons are invited to submit comments on or before September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    To access and review all the documents related to the information collection listed in this notice, please use http://wwww.regulations.gov by searching the Docket ID number ED-2015-ICCD-0064. Comments submitted in response to this notice should be submitted electronically through the Federal eRulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov by selecting the Docket ID number or via postal mail, commercial delivery, or hand delivery. Please note that comments submitted by fax or email and those submitted after the comment period will not be accepted. Written requests for information or comments submitted by postal mail or delivery should be addressed to the Director of the Information Collection Clearance Division, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., LBJ, Room 2E103, Washington, DC 20202-4537.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For specific questions related to collection activities, please contact Beth Grebeldinger, 202-377-4018.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Department of Education (ED), in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA) (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)), provides the general public and Federal agencies with an opportunity to comment on proposed, revised, and continuing collections of information. This helps the Department assess the impact of its information collection requirements and minimize the public's reporting burden. It also helps the public understand the Department's information collection requirements and provide the requested data in the desired format. ED is soliciting comments on the proposed information collection request (ICR) that is described below. The Department of Education is especially interested in public comment addressing the following issues: (1) Is this collection necessary to the proper functions of the Department; (2) will this information be processed and used in a timely manner; (3) is the estimate of burden accurate; (4) how might the Department enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (5) how might the Department minimize the burden of this collection on the respondents, including through the use of information technology. Please note that written comments received in response to this notice will be considered public records.

    Title of Collection: Health Education Assistance Loan (HEAL) Program: Forms.

    OMB Control Number: 1845-0128.

    Type of Review: A revision of an existing information collection.

    Respondents/Affected Public: Individuals or Households, Private Sector.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Responses: 167.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Burden Hours: 24.

    Abstract: The Health Education Assistance Loan (HEAL) forms are required for lenders to make application to the HEAL insurance program, to report accurately and timely on loan actions, including transfer of loans to a secondary agent, and to establish the repayment status of borrowers who qualify for deferment of payments using form 508. The reports assist in the diligent administration of the HEAL program, protecting the financial interest of the federal government.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Kate Mullan, Acting Director, Information Collection Clearance Division, Office of the Chief Privacy Officer, Office of Management.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19101 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 7320-042] Erie Boulevard Hydropower, L.P.; Notice of Availability of Environmental Assessment

    In accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's regulations, 18 CFR part 380 (Order No. 486, 52 FR 47897), the Office of Energy Projects has reviewed the application for a new license for the existing 3.35-megawatt (MW) Chasm Hydroelectric Project, located on the Salmon River, near the Town of Malone, in Franklin County, New York. Commission staff prepared an Environmental Assessment (EA) which analyzes the potential environmental effects of the project and concludes that issuing a new license for the project, with appropriate environmental measures, would not constitute a major federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment.

    A copy of the EA is on file with the Commission and is available for public inspection. The EA may also be viewed on the Commission's Web site at http://www.ferc.gov using the “eLibrary” link. Enter the docket number excluding the last three digits in the docket number field to access the document. For assistance, contact FERC Online Support at [email protected] or toll-free at (866) 208-3676, or for TTY, (202) 502-8659.

    You may also register online at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/esubscription.asp to be notified via email of new filings and issuances related to this or other pending projects. For assistance, contact FERC Online Support.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    John Mudre at (202) 502-8902.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19208 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. OR15-32-000] Noble Energy, Inc.; Notice of Request for Waiver

    Take notice that on July 23, 2015, pursuant to Rule 204 of the Commission's Rules of Practices and Procedure, 18 CFR 385.204 (2014), Noble Energy, Inc. filed a petition requesting temporary waiver of the tariff filing and reporting requirements of sections 6 and 20 of the Interstate Commerce Act and parts 341 and 357 of the Commission's regulations, as more fully explained in the petition.

    Any person desiring to intervene or to protest this filing must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.211, 385.214). Protests will be considered by the Commission in determining the appropriate action to be taken, but will not serve to make protestants parties to the proceeding. Any person wishing to become a party must file a notice of intervention or motion to intervene, as appropriate. Such notices, motions, or protests must be filed on or before the comment date. Anyone filing a motion to intervene or protest must serve a copy of that document on the Petitioner.

    The Commission encourages electronic submission of protests and interventions in lieu of paper using the “eFiling” link at http://www.ferc.gov. Persons unable to file electronically should submit an original and 5 copies of the protest or intervention to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    This filing is accessible on-line at http://www.ferc.gov, using the “eLibrary” link and is available for review in the Commission's Public Reference Room in Washington, DC. There is an “eSubscription” link on the Web site that enables subscribers to receive email notification when a document is added to a subscribed docket(s). For assistance with any FERC Online service, please email [email protected], or call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Comment Date: 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on August 6, 2015.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19204 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. EL15-87-000] Starwood Energy Group Global, L.L.C., Beaver Falls, L.L.C., Syracuse, L.L.C., Hazleton Generation, L.L.C., Startrans IO, LLC, Gainesville Renewable Energy Center, LLC; Notice of Petition for Declaratory Order

    Take notice that on July 29, 2015, pursuant to Rules 207 and 212 of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's (Commission) Rules of Practice and Procedure,18 CFR 385.207 and 385.212, Starwood Energy Group Global, L.L.C, Beaver Falls, L.L.C., Syracuse, L.L.C., Hazleton Generation, L.L.C., Startrans IO, LLC, and Gainesville Renewable Energy Center, LLC filed a petition for a Declaratory Order (petition) requesting the Commission determine that: (1) Current and future Limited Partnerships (LP) Interests are passive investments that do not allow the LP Investors to manage, direct, or control the activities of the Starwood Funds, the Project Companies or future Commission jurisdictional public utilities; (2) Transactions resulting in the purchase and sale of LP Interests do not require case specific approval pursuant to section 203 of the Federal Power Act (FPA) and, to the extent relevant, qualify for the benefit of blanket authorization with respect to non-voting securities under 18 CFR 33.1(c)(2)(i); (3) the Starwood Funds or their affiliates do not need to identify the LP Investors in any future FPA section 203 application, FPA section 205 market-based rate application, notice of change in status or updated market power analysis; and (4) the Commission does not have jurisdiction under FPA section 201 over the Starwood Funds and the LP Investors are not holding companies under the Public Utility Holding Company Act of 205 (PUHCA), as more fully explained in its petition.

    Any person desiring to intervene or to protest this filing must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.211, 385.214). Protests will be considered by the Commission in determining the appropriate action to be taken, but will not serve to make protestants parties to the proceeding. Any person wishing to become a party must file a notice of intervention or motion to intervene, as appropriate. Such notices, motions, or protests must be filed on or before the comment date. Anyone filing a motion to intervene or protest must serve a copy of that document on the Petitioner.

    The Commission encourages electronic submission of protests and interventions in lieu of paper using the “eFiling” link at http://www.ferc.gov. Persons unable to file electronically should submit an original and 5 copies of the protest or intervention to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    This filing is accessible on-line at http://www.ferc.gov, using the “eLibrary” link and is available for review in the Commission's Public Reference Room in Washington, DC. There is an “eSubscription” link on the Web site that enables subscribers to receive email notification when a document is added to a subscribed docket(s). For assistance with any FERC Online service, please email [email protected], or call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Comment Date: 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on August 28, 2015.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19201 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. OR15-31-000] Noble Midstream Services, LLC; Notice of Request for Waiver

    Take notice that on July 23, 2015, pursuant to Rule 204 of the Commission's Rules of Practices and Procedure, 18 CFR 385.204 (2014), Noble Midstream Services, LLC filed a petition requesting temporary waiver of the tariff filing and reporting requirements of sections 6 and 20 of the Interstate Commerce Act and parts 341 and 357 of the Commission's regulations, as more fully explained in the petition.

    Any person desiring to intervene or to protest this filing must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.211, 385.214). Protests will be considered by the Commission in determining the appropriate action to be taken, but will not serve to make protestants parties to the proceeding. Any person wishing to become a party must file a notice of intervention or motion to intervene, as appropriate. Such notices, motions, or protests must be filed on or before the comment date. Anyone filing a motion to intervene or protest must serve a copy of that document on the Petitioner.

    The Commission encourages electronic submission of protests and interventions in lieu of paper using the “eFiling” link at http://www.ferc.gov. Persons unable to file electronically should submit an original and 5 copies of the protest or intervention to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    This filing is accessible on-line at http://www.ferc.gov, using the “eLibrary” link and is available for review in the Commission's Public Reference Room in Washington, DC. There is an “eSubscription” link on the Web site that enables subscribers to receive email notification when a document is added to a subscribed docket(s). For assistance with any FERC Online service, please email [email protected], or call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Comment Date: 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on August 6, 2015.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19203 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket Nos. ER15-1919-000; ER15-1919-001] California Independent System Operator Corporation; Notice of Conference

    Take notice that a staff-led conference will be convened in this proceeding commencing at 10 a.m. (EST) on Tuesday, August 11, 2015, at the offices of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426. The purpose of the conference is to further explore the questions raised in the concurrently issued deficiency letter in these proceedings, and the discussion at this informal conference will be limited to the issues raised in the deficiency letter.

    Any party, as defined by 18 CFR 385.102(c), or any participant as defined by 18 CFR 385.102(b), is invited to attend. Persons wishing to become a party must move to intervene and receive intervenor status pursuant to the Commission's regulations (18 CFR 385.214).

    This conference will not be webcasted or transcribed. However, an audio listen-only line will be provided. If you need a listen-only line, please email Sarah McKinley ([email protected]) by 5:00 p.m. (EST) on Thursday, August 6, with your name, email, and phone number, in order to receive the call-in information the day before the conference. Please use the following text for the subject line, “ER15-1919 listen-only line registration.”

    Commission conferences are accessible under section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. For accessibility accommodations, please send an email to [email protected] or call toll free 1 (866) 208-3372 (voice) or (202) 208-1659 (TTY), or send a FAX to (202) 208-2106 with the required accommodations.

    For additional information, please contact Laura Switzer at (202) 502-6231, [email protected] or Jennifer Shipley at (202) 502-6822, [email protected].

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19202 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. CP15-533-000] Hiland Partner Holdings, LLC; Notice of Application

    Take notice that on July 17, 2015 and supplemented on July 29, 2015, Hiland Partner Holdings LLC (Hiland), pursuant to section 7(c) of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's (FERC) regulations under the Natural Gas Act (NGA), filed in Docket No. CP15-533-000, an application for a certificate of public convenience and necessity to own, operate, and maintain the existing 9.64 mile long, 8 inch diameter natural gas pipeline (Bakken Residue Line) located in Richland County, Montana, all as more fully set forth in the application which is on file with the Commission and open for public inspection. The filing may also be viewed on the Web at http://www.ferc.gov using the “eLibrary” link. Enter the docket number excluding the last three digits in the docket number field to access the document. For assistance, contact FERC at [email protected] or call toll-free, (866) 208-3676 or TTY, (202) 502-8659.

    Any questions concerning this application may be directed to: Mr. Peter Trombley, Associate General Counsel, Kinder Morgan Inc., 1001 Louisiana Street, Suite 1000, Houston, Texas, 77002, by phone at (713) 420-3348, or email at [email protected]

    Specifically, Hiland requests (i) certificate authorization of Bakken Residue Line for the limited purpose of transporting its own natural gas from the Hiland owned Bakken processing plant to an interconnect with Williston Basin Pipeline Company; (ii) a Part 157, Subpart F blanket certificate authorizing certain routine construction, operation, and abandonment activities; (iii) waivers of certain regulatory requirements; and (iv) confirmation that the Commission's assertion of jurisdiction over the Bakken Residue Line will not jeopardize the non-jurisdictional status of Hiland's otherwise non-jurisdictional gathering and processing facilities and operations.

    Pursuant to section 157.9 of the Commission's rules, 18 CFR 157.9, within 90 days of this Notice the Commission staff will either: Complete its environmental assessment (EA) and place it into the Commission's public record (eLibrary) for this proceeding, or issue a Notice of Schedule for Environmental Review. If a Notice of Schedule for Environmental Review is issued, it will indicate, among other milestones, the anticipated date for the Commission staff's issuance of the final environmental impact statement (FEIS) or EA for this proposal. The filing of the EA in the Commission's public record for this proceeding or the issuance of a Notice of Schedule will serve to notify federal and state agencies of the timing for the completion of all necessary reviews, and the subsequent need to complete all federal authorizations within 90 days of the date of issuance of the Commission staff's FEIS or EA.

    There are two ways to become involved in the Commission's review of this project. First, any person wishing to obtain legal status by becoming a party to the proceedings for this project should, on or before the comment date stated below, file with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, a motion to intervene in accordance with the requirements of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.214 or 385.211) and the Regulations under the NGA (18 CFR 157.10). A person obtaining party status will be placed on the service list maintained by the Secretary of the Commission and will receive copies of all documents filed by the applicant and by all other parties. A party must submit 5 copies of filings made with the Commission and must mail a copy to the applicant and to every other party in the proceeding. Only parties to the proceeding can ask for court review of Commission orders in the proceeding.

    However, a person does not have to intervene in order to have comments considered. The second way to participate is by filing with the Secretary of the Commission, as soon as possible, an original and two copies of comments in support of or in opposition to this project. The Commission will consider these comments in determining the appropriate action to be taken, but the filing of a comment alone will not serve to make the filer a party to the proceeding. The Commission's rules require that persons filing comments in opposition to the project provide copies of their protests only to the party or parties directly involved in the protest.

    Persons who wish to comment only on the environmental review of this project should submit an original and two copies of their comments to the Secretary of the Commission. Environmental commenters will be placed on the Commission's environmental mailing list, will receive copies of the environmental documents, and will be notified of meetings associated with the Commission's environmental review process. Environmental commenters will not be required to serve copies of filed documents on all other parties. However, the non-party commenters will not receive copies of all documents filed by other parties or issued by the Commission (except for the mailing of environmental documents issued by the Commission) and will not have the right to seek court review of the Commission's final order.

    Motions to intervene, protests and comments may be filed electronically via the internet in lieu of paper; see, 18 CFR 385.2001(a)(1)(iii) and the instructions on the Commission's Web site under the “e-Filing” link. The Commission strongly encourages electronic filings.

    Comment Date: 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time August 20, 2015.

    Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19205 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 11175-025] Crown Hydro, LLC; Notice of Application Accepted for Filing, Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Protests

    Take notice that the following hydroelectric application has been filed with the Commission and is available for public inspection:

    a. Type of Proceeding: Amendment of License.

    b. Project No.: 11175-025.

    c. Date Filed: April 30, 2015.

    d. Licensee: Crown Hydro, LLC.

    e. Name of Project: Crown Mill Hydroelectric Project.

    f. Location: The 3.4-Megawatt (MW) Crown Mill Hydroelectric Project would be located on U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (“Corps”) lands within the campus of the Upper St. Anthony Falls Lock and Dam on the Mississippi River, in the City of Minneapolis, Hennepin County, Minnesota.

    g. Filed Pursuant to: Federal Power Act, 16 U.S.C. 791a-825r.

    h. Licensee Contact: Donald H. Clarke and Joshua E. Adrian, Duncan, Weinberg, Genzer & Pembroke, P.C., 1615 M Street NW., Washington, DC 20036, Telephone: (202) 467-6370, Email: dhc[email protected], [email protected].

    i. FERC Contact: Mr. M Joseph Fayyad, (202) 502-8759, [email protected].

    j. Deadline for filing comments, interventions and protests is 30 days from the issuance date of this notice by the Commission. The Commission strongly encourages electronic filing. Please file motions to intervene, protests and comments using the Commission's eFiling system at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling.asp. Commenters can submit brief comments up to 6,000 characters, without prior registration, using the eComment system at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/ecomment.asp. You must include your name and contact information at the end of your comments. For assistance, please contact FERC Online Support at [email protected], (866) 208-3676 (toll free), or (202) 502-8659 (TTY). In lieu of electronic filing, please send a paper copy to: Secretary, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426. The first page of any filing should include docket number P-11175-025.

    k. Description of Request: The licensee proposes to move the project site about 250 feet north to a property owned by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (“Corps”) within the campus of the Upper St. Anthony Falls Lock and Dam that is adjacent to the as-licensed site. The most significant difference will be that the Crown Project will move the location of the powerhouse and will be using a new tunnel tailrace as opposed to connecting to an old existing tunnel.

    l. This filing may be viewed on the Commission's Web site at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/elibrary.asp. Enter the docket number excluding the last three digits in the docket number field to access the document. You may also register online at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/esubscription.asp to be notified via email of new filings and issuances related to this or other pending projects. For assistance, call 1-866-208-3676 or email [email protected], for TTY, call (202) 502-8659. A copy is also available for inspection and reproduction in the Commission's Public Reference Room located at 888 First Street NE., Room 2A, Washington, DC 20426, or by calling (202) 502-8371.

    m. Individuals desiring to be included on the Commission's mailing list should so indicate by writing to the Secretary of the Commission.

    n. Comments, Protests, or Motions to Intervene: Anyone may submit comments, a protest, or a motion to intervene in accordance with the requirements of Rules of Practice and Procedure, 18 CFR 385.210, .211, .212 and .214. In determining the appropriate action to take, the Commission will consider all protests or other comments filed, but only those who file a motion to intervene in accordance with the Commission's Rules may become a party to the proceeding. Any comments, protests, or motions to intervene must be received on or before the specified comment date for the particular application.

    o. Filing and Service of Responsive Documents: Any filing must (1) bear in all capital letters the title “COMMENTS”, “PROTEST”, or “MOTION TO INTERVENE” as applicable; (2) set forth in the heading the name of the applicant and the project number of the application to which the filing responds; (3) furnish the name, address, and telephone number of the person protesting or intervening; and (4) otherwise comply with the requirements of 18 CFR 385.2001 through 385.2005. All comments, motions to intervene, or protests must set forth their evidentiary basis and otherwise comply with the requirements of 18 CFR 4.34(b). All comments, motions to intervene, or protests should relate to project works which are the subject of the license amendment. Agencies may obtain copies of the application directly from the applicant. A copy of any protest or motion to intervene must be served upon each representative of the applicant specified in the particular application. If an intervener files comments or documents with the Commission relating to the merits of an issue that may affect the responsibilities of a particular resource agency, they must also serve a copy of the document on that resource agency. A copy of all other filings in reference to this application must be accompanied by proof of service on all persons listed in the service list prepared by the Commission in this proceeding, in accordance with 18 CFR 4.34(b) and 385.2010.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19207 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Notice of Commissioner and Staff Attendance at North American Electric Reliability Corporation Meetings

    The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (Commission) hereby gives notice that members of the Commission and/or Commission staff may attend the following meetings:

    North American Electric Reliability Corporation, Member Representatives Committee and Board of Trustees Meetings, Board of Trustees Corporate Governance and Human Resources Committee, Finance and Audit Committee, Compliance Committee, and Standards Oversight and Technology Committee Meetings The Ritz Carlton Toronto, 181 Wellington Street West, Toronto, ON M5V 3G7 August 12 (7:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.) and August 13 (8:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.), 2015

    Further information regarding these meetings may be found at: http://www.nerc.com/Pages/Calendar.aspx.

    The discussions at the meetings, which are open to the public, may address matters at issue in the following Commission proceedings:

    Docket No. RR15-4, North American Electric Reliability Corporation Docket No. RR15-12, North American Electric Reliability Corporation Docket Nos. RD14-14, RD15-3, RD15-5, North American Electric Reliability Corporation

    For further information, please contact Jonathan First, 202-502-8529, or [email protected]

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19206 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0021; FRL-9931-00] Pesticide Product Registrations; Receipt of Applications for New Active Ingredients AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    EPA has received applications to register pesticide products containing active ingredients not included in any currently registered pesticide products. Pursuant to the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), EPA is hereby providing notice of receipt and opportunity to comment on these applications.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by the Docket Identification Number (ID) and the File Symbol of interest as shown in the body of this document, by one of the following methods:

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute.

    Mail: OPP Docket, Environmental Protection Agency Docket Center (EPA/DC), (28221T), 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001.

    Hand Delivery: To make special arrangements for hand delivery or delivery of boxed information, please follow the instructions at http://www.epa.gov/dockets/contacts.html. Additional instructions on commenting or visiting the docket, along with more information about dockets generally, is available at http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Robert McNally, Director, Biopesticides and Pollution Prevention Division (BPPD) (7511P), Office of Pesticide Programs, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001; main telephone number: (703) 305-7090; email address: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. General Information A. Does this action apply to me?

    You may be potentially affected by this action if you are an agricultural producer, food manufacturer, or pesticide manufacturer. The following list of North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS) codes is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather provides a guide to help readers determine whether this document applies to them. Potentially affected entities may include:

    • Crop production (NAICS code 111).

    • Animal production (NAICS code 112).

    • Food manufacturing (NAICS code 311).

    • Pesticide manufacturing (NAICS code 32532).

    If you have any questions regarding the applicability of this action to a particular entity, consult the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

    B. What should I consider as I prepare my comments for EPA?

    1. Submitting CBI. Do not submit this information to EPA through regulations.gov or email. Clearly mark the part or all of the information that you claim to be CBI. For CBI information in a disk or CD-ROM that you mail to EPA, mark the outside of the disk or CD-ROM as CBI and then identify electronically within the disk or CD-ROM the specific information that is claimed as CBI. In addition to one complete version of the comment that includes information claimed as CBI, a copy of the comment that does not contain the information claimed as CBI must be submitted for inclusion in the public docket. Information so marked will not be disclosed except in accordance with procedures set forth in 40 CFR part 2.

    2. Tips for preparing your comments. When preparing and submitting your comments, see the commenting tips at http://www.epa.gov/dockets/comments.html.

    3. Environmental justice. EPA seeks to achieve environmental justice, the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of any group, including minority and/or low-income populations, in the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies. To help address potential environmental justice issues, EPA seeks information on any groups or segments of the population who, as a result of their location, cultural practices, or other factors, may have atypical or disproportionately high and adverse human health impacts or environmental effects from exposure to the pesticides discussed in this document, compared to the general population.

    II. Registration Applications

    EPA has received applications to register pesticide products containing active ingredients not included in any currently registered pesticide products. Pursuant to the provisions of FIFRA section 3(c)(4) (7 U.S.C. 136a(c)(4)), EPA is hereby providing notice of receipt and opportunity to comment on these applications. Notice of receipt of these applications does not imply a decision by EPA on these applications. For actions being evaluated under EPA's public participation process for registration actions, there will be an additional opportunity for public comment on the proposed decisions. Please see EPA's public participation Web site for additional information on this process (http://www2.epa.gov/pesticide-registration/public-participation-process-registration-actions). EPA received the following applications to register pesticide products containing active ingredients not included in any currently registered pesticide products:

    1. File Symbol: 64137-RE. Docket ID number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0484. Applicant: OMC Ag Consulting, Inc., 828 Tanglewood Ln., East Lansing, MI 48823 (on behalf of Verdera Oy, Kurjenkellontie 5 B, FI-02270 Espoo, Finland). Product name: Rotstop C Biofungicide. Active ingredient: Fungicide—Phlebiopsis gigantea strain VRA 1992 at 10%. Proposed use: End-use product for control of root and butt rot (species of Heterobasidion annosum complex, including Heterobasidion irregulare) on conifers by treatment of freshly cut stumps. Contact: BPPD.

    2. File Symbol: 90866-E. Docket ID number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0458. Applicant: Spring Trading Company, 10805 W. Timberwagon Cir., Spring, TX 77380-4030 (on behalf of CH Biotech R&D Co. LTD, No. 121, Xian an Rd., Xianxi Township, Changhua County 507, Taiwan (R.O.C.) 50741). Product name: CH Biotech R&D Co. Betaine. Active ingredient: Plant Growth Regulator—Methanaminium, 1-carboxy- N, N, N-trimethyl-, inner salt (Betaine) at 98.5%. Proposed use: Plant growth regulator for amelioration of growth reduction caused by saline or sodic soils and environmental stress. Contact: BPPD.

    3. File Symbol: 90866-R. Docket ID number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0458. Applicant: Spring Trading Company, 10805 W. Timberwagon Cir., Spring, TX 77380-4030 (on behalf of CH Biotech R&D Co. LTD, No. 121, Xian an Rd., Xianxi Township, Changhua County 507, Taiwan (R.O.C.) 50741). Product name: CH Biotech Betaine Technical. Active ingredient: Plant Growth Regulator—Methanaminium, 1-carboxy- N, N, N-trimethyl-, inner salt (Betaine) at 98.5%. Proposed use: Manufacturing-use product. Contact: BPPD.

    Authority:

    7 U.S.C. 136 et seq.

    Dated: July 24, 2015. John E. Leahy, Jr., Acting Director, Biopesticides and Pollution Prevention Division, Office of Pesticide Programs.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19263 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [9931-85-Region 10] Final Reissuance of a General NPDES Permit (GP) for Oil and Gas Exploration Facilities in the Federal Waters of Cook Inlet, Alaska AGENCY:

    Region 10, Environmental Protection Agency.

    ACTION:

    Final notice of reissuance of a general permit.

    SUMMARY:

    EPA is reissuing a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) GP (AKG-28-5100) to cover Oil and Gas Exploration Facilities in the Federal Waters of Cook Inlet. EPA proposed the GP on March 22, 2013 for a 60 day comment period. Public Hearings were held the week of April 29, 2013, in Kenai (April 29), Homer (April 30), and Anchorage (May 2).

    DATES:

    The effective date of this GP will be September 1, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Copies of the GP and Response to Comments are available through written requests submitted to EPA, Region 10, 1200 Sixth Avenue, Suite 900, OWW-191, Seattle, WA 98101. Electronic requests may be sent to: [email protected] or [email protected] For requests by phone, call Audrey Washington at (206) 553-0523 or Cindi Godsey at (206) 553-1676.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    The GP, Fact Sheet, Response to Comments and Ocean Discharge Criteria Evaluation may be found on the Region 10 Web site at http://yosemite.epa.gov/r10/water.nsf/NPDES+Permits/General+NPDES+Permits/#oilgas.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    EPA prepared a Biological Evaluation for consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service. EPA received concurrence from both Services on a Not Likely to Adversely Affect determination.

    Executive Order 12866: The Office of Management and Budget has exempted this action from the review requirements of Executive Order 12866 pursuant to Section 6 of that order.

    Regulatory Flexibility Act: Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq., a Federal agency must prepare an initial regulatory flexibility analysis “for any proposed rule” for which the agency “is required by section 553 of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), or any other law, to publish general notice of proposed rulemaking.” The RFA exempts from this requirement any rule that the issuing agency certifies “will not, if promulgated, have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.” EPA has concluded that NPDES general permits are permits, not rulemakings, under the APA and thus not subject to APA rulemaking requirements or the RFA. Notwithstanding that general permits are not subject to the RFA, EPA has determined that this GP, as issued, will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

    Dated: July 29, 2015. Daniel D. Opalski, Director, Office of Water & Watersheds, Region 10.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19255 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [FRL-9931-41-OA] Notification of a Closed Teleconference of the Chartered Science Advisory Board AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA), Science Advisory Board (SAB) Staff Office is announcing a teleconference of the Chartered SAB to conduct a review of a draft report of recommendations regarding the agency's 2015 Scientific and Technological Achievement Awards (STAA). The Chartered SAB teleconference will be closed to the public.

    DATES:

    The Chartered SAB teleconference date is Thursday, September 10, 2015, from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. (Eastern Time).

    ADDRESSES:

    The Chartered SAB closed teleconference will take place via telephone only. General information about the SAB may be found on the SAB Web site at http://www.epa.gov/sab.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Members of the public who wish to obtain further information regarding this announcement may contact Mr. Thomas Carpenter, Designated Federal Officer, by telephone: (202) 564-4885 or email at [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Pursuant to section 10(d) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), 5 U.S.C. App. 2, and section (c)(6) of the Government in the Sunshine Act, 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(6), the EPA has determined that the chartered SAB quality review teleconference will be closed to the public. The purpose of the teleconference is for the chartered SAB to conduct a review of a draft SAB advisory report of recommendations regarding the agency's 2015 STAA. The Chartered SAB teleconference will be closed to the public.

    Quality review is a key function of the chartered SAB. Draft reports prepared by SAB committees, panels, or work groups must be reviewed and approved by the chartered SAB before transmittal to the EPA Administrator. The chartered SAB makes a determination in a meeting consistent with FACA about all draft reports and determines whether the report is ready to be transmitted to the EPA Administrator.

    At the teleconference, the chartered SAB will conduct a review of draft report developed by an SAB committee charged with developing recommendations regarding the agency's 2015 STAA. (for more information, see http://yosemite.epa.gov/sab/sabproduct.nsf/02ad90b136fc21ef85256eba00436459/3c60dba294ebf58885257da2004d194f!OpenDocument&Highlight=0,staa.

    The STAA awards are established to honor and recognize EPA employees who have made outstanding contributions in the advancement of science and technology through their research and development activities, as exhibited in publication of their results in peer reviewed journals. I have determined that the Chartered SAB quality review teleconference will be closed to the public because it is concerned with recommending employees deserving of awards. In making these draft recommendations, the EPA requires full and frank advice from the SAB. This advice will involve professional judgments on the relative merits of various employees and their respective work. Such personnel matters involve the discussion of information that is of a personal nature, the disclosure of which would be a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy and, therefore, is protected from disclosure by section (c)(6) of the Government in the Sunshine Act, 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(6). Minutes of the Chartered SAB teleconference will be certified by the chair and retained in the public record.

    Dated: July 29, 2015. Gina McCarthy, Administrator.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19257 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0022; FRL-9930-13] Pesticide Product Registration; Receipt of Applications for New Uses AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    EPA has received applications to register new uses for pesticide products containing currently registered active ingredients. Pursuant to the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), EPA is hereby providing notice of receipt and opportunity to comment on these applications.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by the docket identification (ID) number and the File Symbol of interest as shown in the body of this document, by one of the following methods:

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute.

    Mail: OPP Docket, Environmental Protection Agency Docket Center (EPA/DC), (28221T), 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001.

    Hand Delivery: To make special arrangements for hand delivery or delivery of boxed information, please follow the instructions at http://www.epa.gov/dockets/contacts.html.

    Additional instructions on commenting or visiting the docket, along with more information about dockets generally, is available at http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Robert McNally, Director, Biopesticides and Pollution Prevention Division (BPPD) (7511P), main telephone number: (703) 305-7090, email address: [email protected]; or Susan Lewis, Director, Registration Division (RD) (7505P), main telephone number: (703) 305-7090, email address: [email protected] The mailing address for each contact person is: Office of Pesticide Programs, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001. As part of the mailing address, include the contact person's name, division, and mail code. The division to contact is listed at the end of each application summary.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    I. General Information A. Does this action apply to me?

    You may be potentially affected by this action if you are an agricultural producer, food manufacturer, or pesticide manufacturer. The following list of North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS) codes is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather provides a guide to help readers determine whether this document applies to them. Potentially affected entities may include:

    • Crop production (NAICS code 111).

    • Animal production (NAICS code 112).

    • Food manufacturing (NAICS code 311).

    • Pesticide manufacturing (NAICS code 32532).

    B. What should I consider as I prepare my comments for EPA?

    1. Submitting CBI. Do not submit this information to EPA through regulations.gov or email. Clearly mark the part or all of the information that you claim to be CBI. For CBI information in a disk or CD-ROM that you mail to EPA, mark the outside of the disk or CD-ROM as CBI and then identify electronically within the disk or CD-ROM the specific information that is claimed as CBI. In addition to one complete version of the comment that includes information claimed as CBI, a copy of the comment that does not contain the information claimed as CBI must be submitted for inclusion in the public docket. Information so marked will not be disclosed except in accordance with procedures set forth in 40 CFR part 2.

    2. Tips for preparing your comments. When preparing and submitting your comments, see the commenting tips at http://www.epa.gov/dockets/comments.html.

    II. Registration Applications

    EPA has received applications to register new uses for pesticide products containing currently registered active ingredients. Pursuant to the provisions of FIFRA section 3(c)(4) (7 U.S.C. 136a(c)(4)), EPA is hereby providing notice of receipt and opportunity to comment on these applications. Notice of receipt of these applications does not imply a decision by the Agency on these applications.

    EPA Registration Number: 86174-3. Docket ID number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2010-0100. Applicant: SciReg, Inc., 12733 Director's Loop, Woodbridge, VA 22192 (on behalf of bio-ferm GmbH, Technologiezentrum Tulln, Technopark 1, Tulln, 3430, Austria). Active ingredients: Aureobasidium pullulans strains DSM 14940 and DSM 14941. Product type: Fungicide. Proposed use: Post-harvest application to citrus. Contact: BPPD.

    EPA Registration Numbers: 264-1137 (technical); 264-1169 (end use); Docket ID number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0318. Applicant: Bayer CropScience, 2 T.W. Alexander Drive, RTP, NC 27709. Active ingredient: Fluoxastrobin. Product type: Fungicide. Proposed use: Soybean seed treatment. Contact: RD.

    EPA Registration Numbers: 62719-499 and 62719-611. Docket ID number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0188. Applicant: 9330 Zionsville Road, Indianapolis, IN 46268. Active ingredient: Penoxasulam. Product type: Herbicide. Proposed use: Pome fruit group 11-10; stone fruit group 12-12; small fruit vine climbing subgroup 13-07F, except fuzzy kiwifruit; olive; pomegranate; and tree nut group 14-12. Contact: RD.

    EPA Registration Numbers: 59639-3, 59639-132, 59639-2, 59639-83, and 59639-148. Docket ID number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0035. Applicant: Valent U.S.A. Corporation, 1600 Riviera Avenue, Suite 200 Walnut Creek, CA 94596-8025. Active ingredient: Clethodim. Product type: Herbicide. Proposed use: Onion, bulb subgroups 3-07A; vegetable, fruiting group 8-10; fruit, pome group 11-10; fruit, stone group 12-12; berry, low growing subgroup 13-07G (except cranberry); rapeseed subgroup 20A (except flax); sunflower subgroup 20B; cotton seed subgroup 20C; Stevia. Contact: RD.

    EPA Registration Number: 100-1120 and 100-1098; Docket ID number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2014-0822. Applicant: Syngenta Crop Protection, LLC., P.O. Box 18300, Greensboro, NC 27419. Active ingredient: Azoxystrobin. Product type: Fungicide. Proposed use: Ti palm. Contact: RD.

    EPA Registration Number: 100-618, 100-617, 100-1312, 100-1178, 100-1324. Docket ID number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2014-0788. Applicant: Syngenta Crop Protection LLC., P.O. Box 18300, Greensboro, NC 27419. Active ingredient: Propiconazole. Product type: Fungicide. Proposed use: Dill, fresh; dill dried; dill, dill seed; leafy Brassica greens, subgroup 5B; radish, tops; radish, roots; Ti palm, leaves; Ti palm, roots, watercress, fruit, stone, group 12-12, except plum and nut, tree, group 14-12. Contact: RD.

    EPA Registration Numbers: 7969-312 (Technical), 7969-309 and 7969-306 (Enduse products). Docket ID number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0324. Applicant: BASF Corporation, 26 Davis Drive, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709. Active ingredient: Fluxapyroxad. Product type: Fungicide. Proposed uses: Citrus, dried pulp; citrus, oil; fruit, citrus, group 10-10; grass forage, fodder and hay, group 17; non-grass animal feeds, group 18; and poultry, fat. Contact: RD.

    EPA Registration Numbers: 241-245 and 241-418. Docket ID number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2014-0397. Applicant: BASF Corporation, 26 Davis Drive, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709. Active ingredient: Pendimethalin. Product type: Herbicide. Proposed use: Caneberry subgroup 13-07A, bushberry subgroup 13-07B and tree nut group 14-12. Contact: RD.

    EPA Registration Number: 81880-4, and 81880-5. Docket ID number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0390. Applicant: Gowan Company, P.O. Box 5569, Yuma, AZ 85366. Active ingredient: Pyridaben. Product type: Insecticide. Proposed use: Greenhouse cucumber, pome fruit group 11-10; low growing berry 13-07G; and small fruit vine climbing subgroup 13-07F. Contact: RD.

    EPA Registration Number: 33906-20. Docket ID number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0390. Applicant: Nissan Chemical Industries, Ltd., c/o Lewis & Harrison, LLC., 122 C St., NW., Suite 505, Washington, DC 20001. Active ingredient: Pyridaben. Product type: Insecticide. Proposed use: Greenhouse cucumber, pome fruit group 11-10; low growing berry 13-07G; and small fruit vine climbing subgroup 13-07F. Contact: RD.

    Authority:

    7 U.S.C. 136 et seq.

    Dated: July 29, 2015. Jennifer L. McLain, Acting, Director, Antimicrobials Division, Office of Pesticide Programs.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19273 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0022; FRL-9930-88] Pesticide Product Registrations; Receipt of Applications for New Uses AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    EPA has received applications to register new uses for pesticide products containing currently registered active ingredients. Pursuant to the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), EPA is hereby providing notice of receipt and opportunity to comment on these applications.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by the Docket Identification Number (ID) and the EPA Registration Number of interest as shown in the body of this document, by one of the following methods:

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute.

    Mail: OPP Docket, Environmental Protection Agency Docket Center (EPA/DC), (28221T), 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001.

    Hand Delivery: To make special arrangements for hand delivery or delivery of boxed information, please follow the instructions at http://www.epa.gov/dockets/contacts.html. Additional instructions on commenting or visiting the docket, along with more information about dockets generally, is available at http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Jennifer McLain, Acting Director, Antimicrobials Division (AD) (7510P), main telephone number: (703) 305-7090, email address: [email protected]; or Susan Lewis, Director, Registration Division (RD) (7505P), main telephone number: (703) 305-7090, email address: [email protected] The mailing address for each contact person is: Office of Pesticide Programs, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001. As part of the mailing address, include the contact person's name, division, and mail code. The division to contact is listed at the end of each application summary.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. General Information A. Does this action apply to me?

    You may be potentially affected by this action if you are an agricultural producer, food manufacturer, or pesticide manufacturer. The following list of North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS) codes is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather provides a guide to help readers determine whether this document applies to them. Potentially affected entities may include:

    • Crop production (NAICS code 111).

    • Animal production (NAICS code 112).

    • Food manufacturing (NAICS code 311).

    • Pesticide manufacturing (NAICS code 32532).

    If you have any questions regarding the applicability of this action to a particular entity, consult the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT for the division listed at the end of the application summary of interest.

    B. What should I consider as I prepare my comments for EPA?

    1. Submitting CBI. Do not submit this information to EPA through regulations.gov or email. Clearly mark the part or all of the information that you claim to be CBI. For CBI information in a disk or CD-ROM that you mail to EPA, mark the outside of the disk or CD-ROM as CBI and then identify electronically within the disk or CD-ROM the specific information that is claimed as CBI. In addition to one complete version of the comment that includes information claimed as CBI, a copy of the comment that does not contain the information claimed as CBI must be submitted for inclusion in the public docket. Information so marked will not be disclosed except in accordance with procedures set forth in 40 CFR part 2.

    2. Tips for preparing your comments. When preparing and submitting your comments, see the commenting tips at http://www.epa.gov/dockets/comments.html.

    3. Environmental justice. EPA seeks to achieve environmental justice, the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of any group, including minority and/or low-income populations, in the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies. To help address potential environmental justice issues, EPA seeks information on any groups or segments of the population who, as a result of their location, cultural practices, or other factors, may have atypical or disproportionately high and adverse human health impacts or environmental effects from exposure to the pesticides discussed in this document, compared to the general population.

    II. Registration Applications

    EPA has received applications to register new uses for pesticide products containing currently registered active ingredients. Pursuant to the provisions of FIFRA section 3(c)(4) (7 U.S.C. 136a(c)(4)), EPA is hereby providing notice of receipt and opportunity to comment on these applications. Notice of receipt of these applications does not imply a decision by EPA on these applications. For actions being evaluated under EPA's public participation process for registration actions, there will be an additional opportunity for public comment on the proposed decisions. Please see EPA's public participation Web site for additional information on this process (http://www2.epa.gov/pesticide-registration/public-participation-process-registration-actions). EPA received the following applications to register new uses for pesticide products containing currently registered active ingredients:

    1. EPA Registration Number: 707-259. Docket ID number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0466. Applicant: Rohm and Hass Co., 100 Independence Mall West, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Active ingredient: 3(2H)-Isothiazolone,4,5-dichloro-2-octyl-. Product type: Algaecide, Bacteriostat, and Fungicide. Proposed use: Increase in non-food contact paper use rate. Contact: AD.

    2. EPA Registration Numbers: 33906-9 and 33906-10. Docket ID number: EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0412. Applicant: Lewis and Harrison, LLC, 122 C St., NW., Suite 505, Washington, DC 20001 (on behalf of Nissan Chemical Industries, Ltd., 7-1, 3-chome, Kanda-Nishiki-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 101-0054, Japan). Active ingredient: Quizalofop-p-ethyl. Product type: Herbicide. Proposed use: Postemergence use on herbicide-tolerant ProvisiaTM rice. Contact: RD.

    Authority:

    7 U.S.C. 136 et seq.

    Dated: July 24, 2015. John E. Leahy, Jr., Acting Director, Biopesticides and Pollution Prevention Division, Office of Pesticide Programs.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19259 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    EXPORT-IMPORT BANK [Public Notice: 2015-6017] Agency Information Collection Activities: Comment Request AGENCY:

    Export-Import Bank of the United States.

    ACTION:

    Submission for OMB review and comments request.

    Form Title: EIB 11-05 Exporter's Certificate for Loan Guarantee & MT Insurance Programs.

    SUMMARY:

    The Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM Bank), as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal Agencies to comment on the proposed information collection, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.

    EXIM Bank's borrowers, financial institution policy holders and guaranteed lenders provide this form to U.S. exporters, who certify to the eligibility of their exports for EXIM Bank support. For direct loans and loan guarantees, the completed form is required to be submitted at time of disbursement and held by either the guaranteed lender or EXIM Bank. For MT insurance, the completed forms are held by the financial institution, only to be submitted to EXIM Bank in the event of a claim filing.

    EXIM Bank uses the referenced form to obtain information from exporters regarding the export transaction and content sourcing. These details are necessary to determine the value and legitimacy of EXIM Bank financing support and claims submitted. It also provides the financial institutions a check on the export transaction's eligibility at the time it is fulfilling a financing request.

    The information collection tool can be reviewed at: http://www.exim.gov/sites/default/files/pub/pending/EIB11-05_MT_LT_Exporter_Certificate.pdf

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before October 5, 2015 to be assured of consideration.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments may be submitted electronically on WWW.REGULATIONS.GOV or by mail to Michele Kuester, Export-Import Bank, 811 Vermont Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20571

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title and Form Number: EIB 11-05 Exporter's Certificate for Loan Guarantee & MT Insurance Programs

    OMB Number: 3048-0043

    Type of Review: Regular

    Need and Use: The information collected will allow EXIM Bank to determine compliance and content for transaction requests submitted to the Export-Import Bank under its insurance, guarantee, and direct loan programs.

    Affected Public:

    This form affects entities involved in the export of U.S. goods and services.

    Annual Number of Respondents: 4,000 Estimated Time per Respondent: 30 minutes Annual Burden Hours: 2,000 hours Frequency of Reporting of Use: As required

    Government Expenses:

    Reviewing time per year: 67 hours Average Wages per Hour: $42.50 Average Cost per Year: (time*wages) $2,847.50 Benefits and Overhead: 20% Total Government Cost: $3,417 Bonita Jones-McNeil, Agency Clearance Officer, Office of the Chief Information Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19093 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6690-01-P
    EXPORT-IMPORT BANK [Public Notice 2015-6018] Agency Information Collection Activities: Comment Request AGENCY:

    Export-Import Bank of the U.S.

    ACTION:

    Submission for OMB review and comments request.

    Form Title: EIB 94-07 Exporters Certificate for Use with a Short Term Export Credit Insurance Policy.

    SUMMARY:

    The Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM Bank), as a part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal Agencies to comment on the proposed information collection, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.

    EXIM Bank's financial institution policy holders provide this form to U.S. exporters, who certify to the eligibility of their exports for EXIM Bank support. The completed forms are held by the financial institution policy holders, only to be submitted to EXIM Bank in the event of a claim filing. A requirement of EXIM Bank's policies is that the insured financial institution policy holder obtains a completed Exporter's Certificate at the time it provides financing for an export. This form will enable EXIM Bank to identify the specific details of the export transaction. These details are necessary for determining the eligibility of claims for approval. EXIM Bank staff and contractors review this information to assist in determining that an export transaction, on which a claim for non-payment has been submitted, meets all of the terms and conditions of the insurance coverage.

    The form can be viewed at http://exim.gov/sites/default/files/pub/pending/eib94-07.pdf.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before October 5, 2015 to be assured of consideration.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments may be submitted electronically on www.regulations.gov or by mail to Michele Kuester, Export-Import Bank, 811 Vermont Ave NW., Washington, DC 20571.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Titles and Form Number: EIB 94-07 Exporters Certificate for Use with a Short Term Export Credit Insurance Policy.

    OMB Number: 3048-0041.

    Type of Review: Regular.

    Need and Use: EXIM Bank uses the referenced form to obtain exporter certification regarding the export transaction, U.S. content, non-military use, non-nuclear use, compliance with EXIM Bank's country cover policy, and their eligibility to participate in USG programs. These details are necessary to determine the legitimacy of claims submitted. It also provides the financial institution policy holder a check on the export transaction's eligibility, at the time it is fulfilling a financing request.

    Affected Public

    This form affects entities involved in the export of U.S. goods and services.

    Annual Number of Respondents: 240.

    Estimated Time per Respondent: 15 minutes.

    Annual Burden Hours: 60 hours.

    Frequency of Reporting of Use: As required.

    Government Expenses

    Reviewing Time per Year: 12 hours.

    Average Wages per Hour: $42.50.

    Average Cost per Year: $510.

    (time * wages)

    Benefits and Overhead: 20%.

    Total Government Cost: $612.

    Bonita Jones-McNeil, Program Analyst, Office of the Chief Information Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19212 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6690-01-P
    FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION [OMB 3060-1033 and 3060-1163] Information Collections Being Reviewed by the Federal Communications Commission Under Delegated Authority AGENCY:

    Federal Communications Commission.

    ACTION:

    Notice and request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    As part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork burden and as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520), the Federal Communications Commission invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on the following information collection(s). Comments are requested concerning: Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Commission, including whether the information shall have practical utility; the accuracy of the Commission's burden estimate; ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information collected; ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on the respondents, including the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology; and ways to further reduce the information burden for small business concerns with fewer than 25 employees. The FCC may not conduct or sponsor a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. No person shall be subject to any penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) that does not display a valid OMB control number.

    DATES:

    Written PRA comments should be submitted on or before October 5, 2015. If you anticipate that you will be submitting comments, but find it difficult to do so within the period of time allowed by this notice, you should advise the contact listed below as soon as possible.

    ADDRESSES:

    Direct all PRA comments to Cathy Williams, FCC, via email [email protected] and to [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For additional information about the information collection, contact Cathy Williams at (202) 418-2918.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    OMB Control Number: 3060-1033.

    Title: Multi-Channel Video Program Distributor EEO Program Annual Report, FCC Form 396-C.

    Form Number: FCC Form 396-C.

    Type of Review: Extension of a currently approved collection.

    Respondents: Business or other for-profit entities; Not-for-profit institutions.

    Number of Respondents and Responses: 2,200 respondents and 2,620 responses.

    Frequency of Response: Recordkeeping requirement; Once every five year reporting requirement; Annual reporting requirement.

    Estimated Time per Response: 10 minutes—2.5 hours.

    Total Annual Burden: 3,187 hours.

    Total Annual Cost to Respondents: None.

    Obligation to Respond: Required to obtain or retain benefits. The statutory authority is contained in Sections 154(i), 303 and 634 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended.

    Nature and Extent of Confidentiality: There is no assurance of confidentiality provided to respondents.

    Privacy Impact Assessment: No impact(s).

    Needs and Uses: The FCC Form 396-C is a collection device used to assess compliance with the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) program requirements by Multi-channel Video programming Distributors (“MPVDs”). It is publicly filed to allow interested parties to monitor a “MPVD's” compliance with the Commission's EEO requirements. All “MVPDs” must file annually an EEO report in their public file detailing various facts concerning their outreach efforts during the preceding year and the results of those efforts. “MVPDs” will be required to file their EEO public file report for the preceding year as part of the in-depth “MVPD” investigation conducted once every five years.

    OMB Control Number: 3060-1163.

    Title: Regulations Applicable to Common Carrier and Aeronautical Radio Licensees Under Section 310(b)(4) of the Communications Act of 1934, as Amended.

    Form No.: N/A.

    Type of Review: Extension of a currently approved collection.

    Respondents: Businesses or other profit entities.

    Number of Respondents and Responses: 47 respondents and 47 responses.

    Estimated Time per Response: 1 hour to 46 hours.

    Frequency of Response: On occasion and one-time reporting requirements.

    Obligation to Respond: Required to obtain or retain benefits. The statutory authority for these proposed information collections is found in Sections 1, 4(i)-(j), 211, 309, 310, and 403 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. 151, 154(i)-(j), 211, 309, 310, and 403.

    Total Annual Burden Hours: 660 hours.

    Total Annual Costs: $198,000.

    Nature and Extent of Confidentiality: An assurance of confidentiality is not offered. This information collection does not require the collection of personally identifiable information (PII) from individuals.

    Privacy Act Impact Assessment: No impacts.

    Needs and Uses: The Federal Communications Commission (Commission) is requesting a three-year extension of OMB Control No. 3060-1163 from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

    On April 18, 2013, the Commission adopted final rules in Review of Foreign Ownership Policies for Common Carrier and Aeronautical Radio Licensees under Section 310(b)(4) of the Communications Act of 1934, as Amended, IB Docket No. 11-133, Second Report and Order, FCC 13-50 (rel. Apr. 18, 2013) (Second Report and Order). Among other changes, the final rules eliminated the current need for licensees that have received a foreign ownership ruling to return to the Commission for approval of increased interests by previously approved foreign investors, of foreign ownership in subsidiaries or affiliates, or of new services or new geographic service areas. In addition, the final rules eliminated the current need for approval of certain corporate reorganizations, subject only to a post-closing notification.

    This information collection did not replace the existing information collection for section 310(b) of the Act (OMB Control Number 3060-0686). Licensees who received foreign ownership rulings prior to the effective date of the new rules will continue to be subject to the Commission's foreign ownership policies and procedures within the parameters of their rulings, until they seek and obtain a new ruling under the new rules. The Commission determined in the Second Report and Order that it would permit such licensees to file a new petition for declaratory ruling under the new rules, but would not require them to do so.

    Federal Communications Commission.

    Gloria J. Miles, Federal Register Liaison Officer, Office of the Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19155 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6712-01-P
    FEDERAL MARITIME COMMISSION Notice of Agreements Filed

    The Commission hereby gives notice of the filing of the following agreements under the Shipping Act of 1984. Interested parties may submit comments on the agreements to the Secretary, Federal Maritime Commission, Washington, DC 20573, within twelve days of the date this notice appears in the Federal Register. Copies of the agreements are available through the Commission's Web site (www.fmc.gov) or by contacting the Office of Agreements at (202)-523-5793 or [email protected]

    Agreement No.: 010071-043.

    Title: Cruise Lines International Association Agreement.

    Parties: Acromas Shipping, Ltd./Saga Shipping; Aida Cruises; AMA Waterways; American Cruise Lines, Inc.; Aqua Expeditions Pte. Ltd.; Australian Pacific Touring Pty Ltd.; Avalon Waterways; Azamara Cruises; Carnival Cruise Lines; CDF Croisieres de France; Celebrity Cruises, Inc.; Celestyal Cruises; Costa Cruise Lines; Compagnie Du Ponant; Croisieurope; Cruise & Maritime Voyages; Crystal Cruises; Cunard Line; Disney Cruise Line; Emerald Waterways; Evergreen Tours; Fred.Olsen Cruise Lines Ltd.; Hapag-Lloyd Kreuzfahrten Gmbh; Hebridean Island Cruises; Holland America Line; Hurtigruten, Inc.; Island Cruises; Lindblad Expeditions Pty Ltd.; Luftner Cruises; Mekong Waterways; MSC Cruises; NCL Corporation; Oceania Cruises; P & O Cruises; P & O Cruises Australia; Paul Gauguin Cruises; Pearl Seas Cruises; Phoenix Reisen Gmbh; Princess Cruises; Pullmantur Cruises Ship Management Ltd.; Regent Seven Seas Cruises; Riviera Tours Ltd.; Royal Caribbean International; Scenic Tours UK Ltd.; Seabourn Cruise Line; SeaDream Yacht Club; Shearings Holidays Ltd.; Silversea Cruises, Ltd.; Star Cruises (HK) Limited; St. Helena Line/Andrew Weir Shipping Ltd.; Swan Hellenic; Tauck River Cruising; The River Cruise Line; Thomson Cruises; Travelmarvel; Tui Cruises Gmbh; Un-Cruises Adventures; Uniworld River Cruises, Inc.; Venice Simplon-Orient-Express Ltd./Belmond; Voyages of Discovery; Voyages to Antiquity (UK) Ltd.; and Windstar Cruises.

    Filing Party: Andre Picciurro, Esq. Kaye, Rose & Partners, LLP; Emerald Plaza, 402 West Broadway, Suite 1300; San Diego, CA 92101-3542

    Synopsis: The Amendment would update the parties and amend Appendix B to address membership criteria for startup cruise lines.

    Agreement No.: 010979-062.

    Title: Caribbean Shipowners Association.

    Parties: CMA CGM, S.A.; Crowley Caribbean Services LLC; Hybur Ltd.; King Ocean Services Limited; Seaboard Marine, Ltd.; Seafreight Line, Ltd.; Tropical Shipping and Construction Company Limited; and Zim Integrated Shipping Services, Ltd.

    Filing Party: Wayne R. Rohde, Esq.; Cozen O'Connor, 1627 I Street NW., Washington, DC 20006.

    Synopsis: The amendment would add inland points in Mexico to the geographic scope of the agreement. The parties have requested expedited review.

    Agreement No.: 011679-014.

    Title: ASF/SERC Agreement.

    Parties: American President Lines, Ltd./APL Co. Pte Ltd.; ANL Singapore Pte Ltd.; China Shipping (Group) Company/China Shipping Container Lines, Co. Ltd.; COSCO Container Lines Company, Ltd.; Evergreen Line Joint Service; Hanjin Shipping Co., Ltd.; Hyundai Merchant Marine Co., Ltd.; Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Ltd.; Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd.; Nippon Yusen Kaisha; Orient Overseas Container Line Ltd.; Wan Hai Lines Ltd.; and Yang Ming Marine Transport Corp.

    Filing Party: Wayne Rohde, Esq.; Cozen O'Connor; 1627 I Street NW; Suite 1100; Washington, DC 20006.

    Synopsis: The amendment would delete certain unused authorities of the agreement, and clarify remaining authorities.

    Agreement No.: 012352.

    Title: Network Shipping Ltd./Trans Global Shipping N.V. Space Charter and Sailing Agreement.

    Parties: Network Shipping Ltd. and Trans Global Shipping N.V.

    Filing Party: Antonio Fernandez; Network Shipping; 241 Sevilla Ave.; Coral Cables, FL 33134.

    Synopsis: The agreement authorizes Network Shipping to charter space to Trans Global Shipping N.V. for the carriage of empty refrigerated containers between Port Hueneme, CA and ports in Ecuador, and between Port Gloucester, NJ and Costa Rica.

    Agreement No.: 012353.

    Title: Crowley/Marinex Space Charter Agreement.

    Parties: Crowley Caribbean Services, LLC and Marinex Cargo Line, Inc.

    Filing Party: Wayne R. Rohde, Esq.; Cozen O'Connor; 1627 I Street NW., Suite 1100; Washington, DC 20036.

    Synopsis: The agreement authorizes Marinex to charter space to Crowley in the trade between Puerto Rico and St. Maarten.

    By Order of the Federal Maritime Commission.

    Dated: July 31, 2015. Rachel E. Dickon, Assistant Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19258 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6731-AA-P
    FEDERAL MEDIATION AND CONCILIATION SERVICE Proposed Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment Request AGENCY:

    Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service.

    ACTION:

    Notice of Request for Renewal of Previously Approved Collection Form FMCS F-7.

    SUMMARY:

    The Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS) invites comments about our intention to request the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to approve the renewal of the Notice to Mediation Agencies Form (FMCS Form F-7; OMB control number 3076-0004). The request will seek a three-year extension. There are no changes being submitted with this request. FMCS is soliciting comments on specific aspects of the collection as described below.

    DATES:

    Comments must be submitted on or before October 5, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit written comments by mail to the Office of Arbitration Services, Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service, 2100 K Street NW., Washington, DC 20427 or by contacting the person whose name appears under the section titled FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. Comments may be submitted also by fax at (202) 606-3749 or electronic mail (email) to [email protected] All comments must be identified by the appropriate agency form number. No confidential business information (CBI) should be submitted through email. Information submitted as a comment concerning this document may be claimed confidential by marking any part or all of the information as “CBI”. Information so marked will not be disclosed but a copy of the comment that does contain CBI must be submitted for inclusion in the public record. FMCS may disclose information not marked confidential publicly without prior notice. All written comments will be available for inspection in Room 704 at the Washington, DC address above from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Arthur Pearlstein, Director of Arbitration Services, FMCS, 2100 K Street NW., Washington, DC 20427. Telephone (202) 606-5111; Fax (202) 606-3749.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Copies of the Notice to Mediation Agencies (FMCS Form 7; OMB control number 3076-0004) are available from the Office of Arbitration Services by calling, faxing or writing to Arthur Pearlstein at the address above. Please ask for the form by title and agency form number.

    I. Information Collection Requests

    FMCS is seeking comments on the following Information Collection Request (ICR).

    Title: Notice to Mediation Agencies; FMCS Form F-7; OMB No. 3076-0004; Expiration date: October 31, 2015.

    Type of Request: Request for Renewal of a previously approved notice without changes in the collection.

    Affected Entities: Parties affected by this information collection are private sector employers and labor unions involved in interstate commerce who file notices for mediation services to the FMCS.

    Frequency: Parties complete this form once, which is at the time of an impending expiration of a collective bargaining agreement.

    Abstract: Under the Labor Management Relations Act of 1947, 29 U.S.C. 158(d), Congress listed specific notice provisions so that no party to a collective bargaining agreement can terminate or modify a collective bargaining contract, unless the party wishing to terminate or modify the contract sends a written notice to the other party sixty days prior to the expiration date (29 U.S.C. 158(d)(1)), and offers to meet and confer with the other party for the purpose of negotiating a new or modified contract (29 U.S.C. 158(d)(2)). The Act requires that parties notify FMCS within thirty days after such notice of the existence of a bargaining dispute (29 U.S.C. 158(d)(3)). The 1974 amendments to the National Labor Relations Act extended coverage to nonprofit health care institutions, including similar notices to FMCS. 29 U.S.C. 158(d) and (g). To facilitate handling around 14,400 notices a year, FMCS created information collection form F-7. The purpose of this information collection activity is for FMCS to comply with its statutory duty to receive these notices, to facilitate assignment of mediators to assist in labor disputes, and to assist the parties in knowing whether or not proper notice was given. The information from these notices is sent electronically to the appropriate field manager who assigns the cases to a mediator so that the mediator may contact labor and management quickly, efficiently, and offer dispute resolution services. Either party to a contract may make a request in writing for a copy of the notice filed with FMCS. Form F-7 was created to allow FMCS to gather desired information in a uniform manner. The collection of such information, including the name of the employer or employer association, address and phone number, email address, official contact, bargaining unit and establishment size, location of affected establishment and negotiations, industry, union address, phone number, email address and official contact, contract expiration date or renewal date, whether the notice is filed on behalf of the employer or the union, and whether this is a health care industry notice is critical for reporting and mediation purposes.

    Burden Statement: The current annual burden estimate is approximately 14,400 respondents. The annual hour burden is estimated at 2,400 hours, approximately 10 minutes for each notice to fill out a one-page form.

    II. Request for Comments

    FMCS solicits comments to:

    (i) Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information to be collected will have practical utility.

    (ii) Enhance the accuracy of the agency's estimates of the burden of the proposed collection of information.

    (iii) Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected.

    (iv) Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including the use of appropriate automated, electronic collection technologies or other forms of information technology.

    III. The Official Record

    The official record is the paper electronic record maintained at the address at the beginning of this document. FMCS will transfer all electronically received comments into printed-paper form as they are received.

    List of Subjects

    Labor-Management relations, Employee Management Relations, and Information Collections Requests.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Jeannette Walters-Marquez, Attorney-Advisor.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19167 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6732-01-P
    FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM Agency Information Collection Activities: Notice; Correction AGENCY:

    Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.

    SUMMARY:

    On July 2, 2015, the Board published a notice of final approval (80 FR 38201) of proposed information collections by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (Board) under OMB delegated authority. The estimated annual reporting hours for the FR Y-9C (non-Advanced Approaches holding companies) and FR Y-9C (Advanced Approaches holding companies) were understated. Accordingly, this notice corrects the July 2, 2015 notice with current estimated burden hours.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Federal Reserve Board Clearance Officer—Nuha Elmaghrabi—Office of the Chief Data Officer, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, Washington, DC 20551, (202) 452-3829. Telecommunications Device for the Deaf (TDD) users may contact (202) 263-4869, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, Washington, DC 20551.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The following information corrects the estimated annual reporting hours and estimated average hours per response for the FR Y-9C (non-Advanced Approaches holding companies) and FR Y-9C (Advanced Approaches holding companies).

    Estimated Annual Reporting Hours

    FR Y-9C (non-Advanced Approaches holding companies)—130,964 hours;

    FR Y-9C (Advanced Approaches holding companies)—2,500 hours.

    Estimated Average Hours per Response

    FR Y-9C (non-Advanced Approaches holding companies)—50.84 hours;

    FR Y-9C (Advanced Approaches holding companies)—52.09 hours.

    Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, July 23, 2015. Robert deV. Frierson, Secretary of the Board.
    [FR Doc. 2015-18572 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6210-01-M
    FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM Formations of, Acquisitions by, and Mergers of Bank Holding Companies

    The companies listed in this notice have applied to the Board for approval, pursuant to the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956 (12 U.S.C. 1841 et seq.) (BHC Act), Regulation Y (12 CFR part 225), and all other applicable statutes and regulations to become a bank holding company and/or to acquire the assets or the ownership of, control of, or the power to vote shares of a bank or bank holding company and all of the banks and nonbanking companies owned by the bank holding company, including the companies listed below.

    The applications listed below, as well as other related filings required by the Board, are available for immediate inspection at the Federal Reserve Bank indicated. The applications will also be available for inspection at the offices of the Board of Governors. Interested persons may express their views in writing on the standards enumerated in the BHC Act (12 U.S.C. 1842(c)). If the proposal also involves the acquisition of a nonbanking company, the review also includes whether the acquisition of the nonbanking company complies with the standards in section 4 of the BHC Act (12 U.S.C. 1843). Unless otherwise noted, nonbanking activities will be conducted throughout the United States.

    Unless otherwise noted, comments regarding each of these applications must be received at the Reserve Bank indicated or the offices of the Board of Governors not later than August 31, 2015.

    A. Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland (Nadine Wallman, Vice President) 1455 East Sixth Street, Cleveland, Ohio 44101-2566:

    1. Farmers National Banc Corp, Canfield, Ohio; to acquire 100 percent of the voting shares of Tri-State 1st Banc, Inc., East Liverpool, Ohio and thereby indirectly acquire 1st National Community Bank, East Liverpool, Ohio.

    B. Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta (Chapelle Davis, Assistant Vice President) 1000 Peachtree Street, NE., Atlanta, Georgia 30309:

    1. Southern States Bancshares, Inc., Anniston, Alabama; to acquire 100 percent of the outstanding shares of Columbus Community Bank, Columbus, Georgia.

    In addition, Southern States Bank, Anniston, Alabama, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Southern States Bancshares, Inc., proposes to become a bank holding company by acquiring Columbus Community Bank, for a moment in time.

    C. Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago (Colette A. Fried, Assistant Vice President) 230 South LaSalle Street, Chicago, Illinois 60690-1414:

    1. Hometown Bancorp, Ltd., Fond Du Lac, Wisconsin; to acquire 100 percent of the outstanding shares of Farmers Exchange Bank, Neshkoro, Wisconsin.

    Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, July 30, 2015. Michael J. Lewandowski, Associate Secretary of the Board.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19115 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6210-01-P
    GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION [OMB Control No. 3090-0007; Docket 2015-0001; Sequence 4] Submission to OMB; General Services Administration Acquisition Regulation; Contractor's Qualifications and Financial Information (GSA Form 527) AGENCY:

    Office of Acquisition Policy, General Services Administration (GSA).

    ACTION:

    Notice of request for comments regarding an extension to an existing OMB clearance.

    SUMMARY:

    Under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act, the Regulatory Secretariat will be submitting to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) a request to review and approve an extension of a previously approved information collection requirement regarding Contractor's Qualifications and Financial Information (GSA Form 527). A notice published in the Federal Register at 80 FR 27309, on May 13, 2015. No comments were received.

    DATES:

    Submit comments on or before: September 4, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Janet Fry, Program Analyst, Office of Governmentwide Policy, at 703-605-3167, or via email at [email protected]

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit comments identified by Information Collection 3090-0007, Contractor's Qualifications and Financial Information, by any of the following methods:

    Regulations.gov: http://www.regulations.gov. Submit comments via the Federal eRulemaking portal searching Information Collection 3090-0007. Select the link “Comment Now” that corresponds with “Information Collection 3090-0007, Contractor's Qualifications and Financial Information”. Follow the instructions provided on the screen. Please include your name, company name (if any), and “Information Collection 3090-0007, Contractor's Qualifications and Financial Information” on your attached document.

    Mail: General Services Administration, Regulatory Secretariat (MVCB), 1800 F Street NW., Washington, DC 20405. ATTN: Ms. Flowers/IC 3090-0007, Contractor's Qualifications and Financial Information.

    Instructions: Please submit comments only and cite Information Collection 3090-0007, Contractor's Qualifications and Financial Information, in all correspondence related to this collection. All comments received will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal and/or business confidential information provided.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: A. Purpose

    The General Services Administration will be requesting the Office of Management and Budget to extend information collection 3090-0007, concerning GSA Form 527, Contractor's Qualifications and Financial Information. This form is used to determine the financial capability of prospective contractors as to whether they meet the financial responsibility standards in accordance with the Federal Acquisition Regulation 9.103(a) and 9.104-1 and also the General Services Administration Acquisition Manual 509.105-1.

    B. Annual Reporting Burden

    Respondents: 2,940.

    Responses Per Respondent: 1.2.

    Total Responses: 3,528.

    Hours per Response: 1.5.

    Total Burden Hours: 5,292.

    The estimated annual burden has decreased since GSA's 2012 submission from 8,820 burden hours to 5,292 burden hours to reflect the widespread use of the option for potential contractors to submit financial statements and balance sheets in lieu of completing the applicable fields on GSA Form 527. The alternate submission of financial statements and balance sheets significantly reduces the burden on prospective contractors, as these documents are generally readily available. As such, the average estimated hours to complete a response has been reduced from 2.5 hours per response to 1.5 hours.

    Obtaining Copies of Proposals: Requesters may obtain a copy of the information collection documents from the General Services Administration, Regulatory Secretariat Division (MVCB), 1800 F Street NW., Washington, DC 20405, telephone 202-501-4755. Please cite OMB Control No. 3090-0007, Contractor's Qualifications and Financial Information (GSA Form 527), in all correspondence.

    Public Comments: Public comments are particularly invited on: Whether this collection of information is necessary and whether it will have practical utility; whether our estimate of the public burden of this collection of information is accurate, and based on valid assumptions and methodology; ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Jeffrey A. Koses, Director, Office of Acquisition Policy, Office of Government-wide Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19223 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6820-61-P
    GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION [OMB Control No. 3090-0286; Docket 2015-0001; Sequence 14] General Services Administration Acquisition Regulation; Submission for OMB Review; GSA Mentor-Protégé Program AGENCIES:

    Office of the Chief Acquisition Officer, General Services Administration (GSA).

    ACTION:

    Notice of request for public comments regarding an extension to an existing OMB clearance.

    SUMMARY:

    Under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act, the Regulatory Secretariat Division will be submitting to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) a request to review and approve a previously approved information collection concerning the GSA Mentor-Protégé Program, in the General Services Administration Acquisition Manual (GSAM). A notice was published in the Federal Register at 80 FR 27310 on May 13, 2015. One comment was received.

    DATES:

    Submit comments on or before September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit comments identified by Information Collection 3090-0286, GSA Mentor-Protégé Program by any of the following methods:

    Regulations.gov: http://www.regulations.gov.

    Submit comments via the Federal eRulemaking portal by searching the OMB control number. Follow the instructions provided at the “Submit a Comment” screen. Please include your name, company name (if any), and “Information Collection 3090-0286, GSA Mentor-Protégé Program” on your attached document.

    Mail: General Services Administration, Regulatory Secretariat Division (MVCB), 1800 F Street NW., Washington, DC 20405. ATTN: Ms. Flowers/IC 3090-0286, GSA Mentor-Protégé Program.

    Instructions: Please submit comments only and cite Information Collection 3090-0286, GSA Mentor-Protégé Program, in all correspondence related to this collection. All comments received will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal and/or business confidential information provided.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ms. Christina Mullins, Procurement Analyst, General Services Acquisition Policy Division, GSA, 202-969-4066 or email [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: A. Purpose

    The GSA Mentor-Protégé Program is designed to encourage GSA prime contractors to assist small businesses, small disadvantaged businesses, women-owned small businesses, veteran-owned small businesses, service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses, and HUBZone small businesses in enhancing their capabilities to perform GSA contracts and subcontracts, foster the establishment of long-term business relationships between these small business entities and GSA prime contractors, and increase the overall number of small business entities that receive GSA contract and subcontract awards.

    B. Discussion and Analysis

    One comment was received from the Center for Equal Opportunity. The comment suggests that the GSA Mentor-Protégé Program use neither preferences nor classifications on the basis of race, ethnicity, or sex. The program does not distinguish firms on the basis of race or ethnicity. Women-owned small business firms may be distinguished as this is a small business category recognized by statute through the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. Chapter 14a). This notice regards the information collection related to administering the GSA Mentor-Protégé Program. Any changes to the program itself would be handled separately through the rulemaking process.

    Public comments are particularly invited on: Whether this collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of functions of the FAR, and whether it will have practical utility; whether our estimate of the public burden of this collection of information is accurate, and based on valid assumptions and methodology; ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and ways in which we can minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, through the use of appropriate technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

    C. Annual Reporting Burden

    Respondents: 254.

    Responses per Respondent: 4.

    Total Annual Responses: 1,016.

    Hours per Response: 3.

    Total Burden Hours: 3,048.

    Obtaining Copies of Proposals: Requesters may obtain a copy of the information collection documents from the General Services Administration, Regulatory Secretariat Division (MVCB), 1800 F Street NW., Washington, DC 20405, telephone 202-501-4755. Please cite OMB Control No. 3090-0286, GSA Mentor-Protégé Program, in all correspondence.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Jeffrey A. Koses, Director, Office of Acquisition Policy & Senior Procurement Executive.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19224 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6820-61-P
    GENERAL SERVICES ADMINISTRATION [OMB Control No. 3090-0252; Docket 2015-0001; Sequence 15] General Services Administration Acquisition Regulation; Submission for OMB Review; Preparation, Submission, and Negotiation of Subcontracting Plans AGENCY:

    Office of Acquisition Policy, General Services Administration (GSA).

    ACTION:

    Notice of request for comments regarding an extension to an existing OMB clearance.

    SUMMARY:

    Under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act, the Regulatory Secretariat Division will be submitting to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) a request to review and approve an extension of a previously approved information collection requirement regarding preparation, submission, and negotiation of subcontracting plans.

    This information collection will ensure that small and small, disadvantaged business concerns are afforded the maximum practicable opportunity to participate as subcontractors in negotiated procurements. The Preparation, Submission, and Negotiation of the Subcontracting Plans provision requires for all negotiated solicitations, having an anticipated award value over $650,000 ($1,500,000 for construction), the submission of a subcontracting plan with an offeror's proposal. A notice was published in the Federal Register at 80 FR 27308 on May 13, 2015. No Comments were received.

    DATES:

    Submit comments on or before: September 4, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ms. Christina Mullins, Procurement Analyst, General Services Acquisition Policy Division, GSA, 202-969-4066 or email [email protected]

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit comments identified by Information Collection 3090-0252, Preparation, Submission and Negotiation of Subcontracting Plans by any of the following methods:

    Regulations.gov: http://www.regulations.gov. Submit comments via the Federal eRulemaking portal by searching the OMB control number. Select the link “Submit a Comment” that corresponds with “Information Collection 3090-0252, Preparation, Submission and Negotiation of Subcontracting Plans”. Follow the instructions provided at the “Submit a Comment” screen. Please include your name, company name (if any), and “Information Collection 3090-0252, Preparation, Submission and Negotiation of Subcontracting Plans” on your attached document.

    Mail: General Services Administration, Regulatory Secretariat Division (MVCB), 1800 F Street NW., Washington, DC 20405. ATTN: Ms. Flowers/IC 3090-0252, Preparation, Submission and Negotiation of Subcontracting Plans.

    Instructions: Please submit comments only and cite Information Collection 3090-0252, Preparation, Submission and Negotiation of Subcontracting Plans, in all correspondence related to this collection. All comments received will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal and/or business confidential information provided.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: A. Purpose

    The GSAR provision at 552.219-72 requires all offerors, other than small business concerns, responding to a negotiated solicitation to submit a subcontracting plan with their respective offers so that a plan can be negotiated concurrently with other parts of the proposal, including price and any technical and management proposals. The respondents are potential GSA contractors. The provision may be used when the contracting officer believes that the potential contract provides significant opportunities for small businesses as subcontractors.

    The contracting officer will use the information to evaluate whether GSA's expectation that subcontracting opportunities exist for small businesses is reasonable under the circumstances; negotiate goals consistent with statutory requirements and acquisition objectives; and expedite the award process. The provision is not applicable if an offeror submits a previously-approved commercial subcontracting plan.

    B. Annual Reporting Burden

    Respondents: 1,440.

    Responses per Respondent: 1.

    Total Annual Responses: 1,440.

    Hours per Response: 12.

    Total Burden Hours: 17,280.

    C. Public Comments

    Public comments are particularly invited on: Whether this collection of information is necessary and whether it will have practical utility; whether our estimate of the public burden of this collection of information is accurate, and based on valid assumptions and methodology; ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected.

    Obtaining Copies of Proposals: Requesters may obtain a copy of the information collection documents from the General Services Administration, Regulatory Secretariat Division (MVCB), 1800 F Street NW., Washington, DC 20405, telephone 202-501-4755. Please cite OMB Control No. 3090-0252, Preparation, Submission, and Negotiation of Subcontracting Plans, in all correspondence.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Jeffrey A. Koses, Director, Office of Acquisition Policy, Senior Procurement Executive.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19222 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6820-61-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [30Day-15-15DA] Agency Forms Undergoing Paperwork Reduction Act Review

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has submitted the following information collection request to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and approval in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. The notice for the proposed information collection is published to obtain comments from the public and affected agencies.

    Written comments and suggestions from the public and affected agencies concerning the proposed collection of information are encouraged. Your comments should address any of the following: (a) Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (b) Evaluate the accuracy of the agencies estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (c) Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; (d) Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses; and (e) Assess information collection costs.

    To request additional information on the proposed project or to obtain a copy of the information collection plan and instruments, call (404) 639-7570 or send an email to [email protected] Written comments and/or suggestions regarding the items contained in this notice should be directed to the Attention: CDC Desk Officer, Office of Management and Budget, Washington, DC 20503 or by fax to (202) 395-5806. Written comments should be received within 30 days of this notice.

    Proposed Project

    Improving the Impact of Laboratory Practice Guidelines (LPGs): A New Paradigm for Metrics- American Society for Microbiology—NEW—Center for Surveillance, Epidemiology and Laboratory Services (CSELS), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

    Background and Brief Description

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is funding three 5-year projects collectively entitled “Improving the Impact of Laboratory Practice Guidelines: A New Paradigm for Metrics”. An “LPG” is defined as written recommendations for voluntary, standardized approaches for medical laboratory testing that takes into account processes for test selection, sample procurement and processing, analytical methods, and results reporting for effective diagnosis and management of disease and health conditions. LPGs may be disseminated to, and used by, laboratorians and clinicians to assist with test selection and test result interpretation. The overall purpose of these cooperative agreements is to increase the effectiveness of LPGs by defining measures and collecting information to inform better LPG creation, revision, dissemination, promotion, uptake and impact on clinical testing and public health.

    The project will explore how these processes and their impediments and facilitators differ among various intended users of LPGs. Through this demonstration project, CDC seeks to understand how to customize LPG creation and promotion to better serve these intended users of LPGs. An important goal is to help organizations that sponsor the development of LPGs create a sustainable approach for continuous quality improvement to evaluate and improve an LPG's impact through better collection of information.

    The CDC selected three organizations that currently create and disseminate LPGs to support activities under a cooperative agreement funding mechanism to improve the impact of their LPGs. The American Society for Microbiology (ASM), the Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute, and the College of American Pathologists, will each use their LPGs as models to better understand how to improve uptake and impact of these and future LPGs. Only the ASM submission will be described in this notice.

    The ASM project will address four LPGs that are important to clinical testing and have a high public health impact: reducing blood culture contamination (BCC), rapid diagnosis of blood stream infections (BSI), proper collection and transport of urine (UT), and microbiological practices to improve the diagnosis and management of patients with Clostridium difficile (C. difficile) infection (CDI). The BCC LPG was published and it includes recommendations for the use of: 1) venipuncture over catheters as the preferred technique for sample collection in a clinical setting, and 2) phlebotomy teams over non-phlebotomist staff for collecting blood for culture. The BSI report examines the effectiveness of rapid diagnostic tests to promote more accurate and timely administration of targeted antibiotic therapy for patients with bloodstream infections. This report will be published and recommendations will be developed based on additional information collected. Practices related to the collection, storage and preservation of urine for microbiological culture that improve the diagnosis and management of patients with urinary tract infections were analyzed and approved recommendations will be published. Microbiological practices related to improving diagnosis and management of patients with C. difficile infection will be collected and analyzed, and recommendations will also be developed and published.

    The intended respondents of ASM's surveys will include microbiology supervisors, laboratory directors, laboratory managers, and medical technologists. For this request for OMB approval of a new information collection, we will be requesting approval to collect baseline and post-dissemination information for the BCC LPG. Because the BSI, UT and CDI reports are not yet published, ASM will conduct a baseline survey to determine current practices prior to dissemination of the LPGs.

    On behalf of the ASM and the CDC, the Laboratory Response Network (LRN), which was founded by the CDC, will recruit laboratories that perform the kinds of testing affected by these LPGs to take the surveys. Messages regarding ASM surveys will be worded as an invitation, not as a coercive request. Some states may opt not to recruit LRN laboratory participation, but because the issues are important to clinical and public health, we expect good participation by most states. This mechanism will assure the best response rate of all the options we considered.

    The CDC LRN Coordinator will email a letter to the Laboratory Director of the LRN Reference Laboratories, (i.e., 50 State Public Health Laboratories, the New York City Public Health Laboratory and the Los Angeles County Public Health Laboratory). These 52 LRN Reference Laboratory Directors will be asked to then email the sentinel laboratories, which include hospital and independent laboratories, in their states, and provide a hyperlink to access the survey tool on-line. SurveyMonkey® will host the online survey and be used as the information collection instrument and responses will be collected and maintained by ASM.

    We anticipate that approximately 4,200 sentinel laboratories will be contacted and asked to complete the survey on-line. ASM anticipates achieving an 80% response rate with their information collections, or 3,360 out of approximately 4,200 aggregate responses for each of the five different surveys.

    In addition, the ASM will also recruit, by emailing a letter containing the SurveyMonkey® hyperlinks for the five surveys to each of their ClinMicroNet and DivCNet listervs inviting ~828 and ~1470 subscribers (comprised of laboratory directors as well as medical technologists in a 99%:1% and 60%:40%), respectively, to take each of the five SurveyMonkey® surveys. Moreover, the ASM will email the same letter containing the SurveyMonkey® hyperlinks for the 5 surveys to ~1453 ASM Clinical Microbiology Issues Update newsletter subscribers, which include microbiology supervisors, laboratory directors, laboratory managers, and medical technologists in a 25 percent:25 percent: 25 percent: 25 percent ratio, to invite them to participate.

    For burden calculations, respondents will include microbiology supervisors, laboratory directors, laboratory managers, and medical technologists. According to ASM, the burden hours per respondent who will be invited to participate in each of the BCC baseline and post-dissemination surveys will not exceed 35 minutes and each of the BSI, UT and CDI baseline surveys will be 20 minutes. This time frame was specified based on ASM's previous experiences conducting laboratory surveys. Each survey was pilot tested with 9 or fewer respondents before dissemination.

    The total estimated annualized burden hours for this collection is 17,225. There are no costs to respondents other than their time.

    Estimated Annualized Burden Hours Type of respondents Form name Number of
  • respondents
  • Number of
  • responses
  • per
  • respondent
  • Average
  • burden per
  • response
  • (in hrs.)
  • Microbiology Supervisors BCC-baseline
  • BCC-post
  • BSI-baseline
  • UT-baseline
  • CDI-baseline
  • 2,463
  • 2,463
  • 2,463
  • 2,463
  • 2,463
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 35/60
  • 35/60
  • 20/60
  • 20/60
  • 20/60
  • Laboratory Directors BCC-baseline
  • BCC-post
  • BSI-baseline
  • UT-baseline
  • CDI-baseline
  • 3,115
  • 3,115
  • 3,115
  • 3,115
  • 3,115
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 35/60
  • 20/60
  • 20/60
  • 20/60
  • 20/60
  • Laboratory Managers BCC-baseline
  • BCC-post
  • BSI-baseline
  • UT-baseline
  • CDI-baseline
  • 1,413
  • 1,413
  • 1,413
  • 1,413
  • 1,413
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 35/60
  • 35/60
  • 20/60
  • 20/60
  • 20/60
  • Medical Technologists BCC-baseline
  • BCC-post
  • BSI-baseline
  • UT-baseline
  • CDI-baseline
  • 960
  • 960
  • 960
  • 960
  • 960
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
  • 35/60
  • 20/60
  • 20/60
  • 20/60
  • 20/60
  • LeRoy A. Richardson, Chief, Information Collection Review Office, Office of Scientific Integrity, Office of the Associate Director for Science, Office of the Director, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19114 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4163-18-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Administration for Community Living Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Small Business Innovation Research Program—Phase II AGENCY:

    National Institute on Disability, Independent Living and Rehabilitation, Administration for Community Living (ACL), HHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Administration for Community Living (ACL), National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDLRR) is announcing an opportunity for public comment on the proposed collection of certain information. Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (the PRA), Federal agencies are required to publish notice in the Federal Register concerning each proposed collection of information, including each proposed extension of an existing collection of information, and to allow 60 days for public comment in response to the notice. This notice solicits comments on the information collection requirements relating to the Small Business Innovation Research Program (SBIR)—Phase II.

    DATES:

    Submit written or electronic comments on the collection of information by October 5, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit electronic comments on the collection of information to: [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Brian Bard at 202-254-7345 or [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Under the PRA (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520), Federal agencies must obtain approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for each collection of information they conduct or sponsor. “Collection of information” is defined in 44 U.S.C. 3502(3) and 5 CFR 1320.3(c) and includes agency request or requirements that members of the public submit reports, keep records, or provide information to a third party. Section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the PRA (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)) requires Federal agencies to provide a 60-day notice in the Federal Register concerning each proposed collection of information, including each proposed extension of an existing collection of information, before submitting the collection to OMB for approval. To comply with this requirement, ACL/NIDILRR is publishing notice of the proposed collection of information set forth in this document. With respect to the following collection of information, ACL/NIDILRR invites comments on: (1) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of ACL/NIDILRR's functions, including whether the information will have practical utility; (2) the accuracy of ACL/NIDILRR's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques when appropriate, and other forms of information technology. ACL/NIDILRR proposes to use this set of data collection tools to be used as a grant application package for the information used to apply for new grants under the SBIR program (Phase II).

    Public Law 106-554, the “Small Business Reauthorization Act of 2000, H.R. 5567” (the “Act”) was enacted on December 21, 2000. The Act requires certain agencies, including the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to establish a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program by reserving a statutory percentage of their extramural research and development budgets to be awarded to small business concerns for research or research and development (R/R&D) through a uniform, highly competitive, three-phase process each fiscal year. The Act further requires the Small Business Administration (SBA) to issue policy directives for the general conduct of the SBIR programs within the Federal Government. The purpose of this program is to stimulate technological Innovation in the private sector, strengthen the role of small business in meeting Federal research and research and development needs, increase the commercial application of Department of Education (ED) supported research results, and improve the return on investment from Federally-funded research for economic and social benefits to the Nation.

    Awards are made on the basis of competitively reviewed applications. The Department is requesting approval of this grant application package for the information used to apply for new grants under the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II program. Phase I is intended to determine, insofar as possible, the scientific or technical merit and feasibility of ideas. Phase II is intended to expand on the results of and to further pursue the development of a Phase I project. Phase II is the principal research and research and development effort. It requires a more comprehensive application, outlining the effort in detail including the commercial potential. Phase II applications must be Phase I grantees with findings that appear sufficiently promising as a result of Phase I. Applications are evaluated based on published criteria by panels of experts.

    ACL/NIDILRR estimates the burden of this collection of information as 240 hours for project staff, 320 for reviewers, and 1,080 hours for individuals. Total burden is 1,640 hours per year.

    Dated: July 31, 2015. Kathy Greenlee, Administrator and Assistant Secretary for Aging.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19237 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4154-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration [Docket No. FDA-2013-D-1009] Use of Nanomaterials in Food for Animals; Guidance for Industry; Availability AGENCY:

    Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is announcing the availability of guidance for industry #220 entitled “Use of Nanomaterials in Food for Animals.” The guidance describes FDA's current thinking regarding the use of nanomaterials or the application of nanotechnology in food for animals. It is intended to assist industry and other stakeholders in identifying potential issues related to the safety or regulatory status of food for animals containing nanomaterials or otherwise involving the application of nanotechnology.

    DATES:

    Submit either electronic or written comments on Agency guidances at any time.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit written requests for single copies of the guidance to the Policy and Regulations Staff (HFV-6), Center for Veterinary Medicine, Food and Drug Administration, 7519 Standish Pl., Rockville, MD 20855. Send one self-addressed adhesive label to assist that office in processing your requests. See the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section for electronic access to the guidance document.

    Submit electronic comments on the guidance to http://www.regulations.gov. Submit written comments to the Division of Dockets Management (HFA-305), Food and Drug Administration, 5630 Fishers Lane, Rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Dragan Momcilovic, Center for Veterinary Medicine (HFV-226), Food and Drug Administration, 7519 Standish Pl., Rockville, MD 20855, 240-453-6856, [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background

    In the Federal Register of June 27, 2014 (79 FR 36530), FDA published the notice of availability for a draft guidance #220 entitled “Use of Nanomaterials in Food for Animals” giving interested persons until September 10, 2014, to comment on the draft guidance. FDA received several comments on the draft guidance and those comments were considered as the guidance was finalized. The guidance announced in this notice finalizes the draft guidance dated June 2014.

    II. Significance of Guidance

    This level 1 guidance is being issued consistent with FDA's good guidance practices regulation (21 CFR 10.115). The guidance represents the current thinking of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA or Agency) on the use of nanomaterials in food for animals. It does not establish any rights for any person and is not binding on FDA or the public. You can use an alternative approach if it satisfies the requirements of the applicable statutes and regulations.

    III. Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

    This guidance refers to previously approved collections of information found in FDA regulations. These collections of information are subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520). The collections of information in 21 CFR 571.1 and 21 CFR 571.6 have been approved under 0910-0546.

    IV. Comments

    Interested persons may submit either electronic comments regarding this document to http://www.regulations.gov or written comments to the Division of Dockets Management (see ADDRESSES). It is only necessary to send one set of comments. Identify comments with the docket number found in brackets in the heading of this document. Received comments may be seen in the Division of Dockets Management between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, and will be posted to the docket at http://www.regulations.gov.

    V. Electronic Access

    Persons with access to the Internet may obtain the guidance at either http://www.fda.gov/AnimalVeterinary/GuidanceComplianceEnforcement/GuidanceforIndustry/default.htm or http://www.regulations.gov.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Leslie Kux, Associate Commissioner for Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19179 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4164-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration [Docket No. FDA-2014-D-1473] Over-the-Counter Pediatric Oral Liquid Drug Products Containing Acetaminophen; Guidance for Industry; Availability AGENCY:

    Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA or the Agency) is announcing the availability of a guidance for industry entitled “Over-the-Counter Pediatric Oral Liquid Drug Products Containing Acetaminophen.” The guidance is intended to help drug manufacturers, packagers, and labelers minimize the risk to consumers of acetaminophen-related liver damage associated with the use of nonprescription, also known as over-the-counter or OTC, pediatric oral liquid acetaminophen drug products. This guidance provides recommendations regarding acetaminophen concentration, container labels, carton labeling, and packaging of such products, as well as for any associated delivery devices. FDA's recommendations are designed to encourage safer use of these products by minimizing the potential for acetaminophen overdosing due to medication errors or accidental ingestion.

    DATES:

    Submit either electronic or written comments on Agency guidances at any time.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit written requests for single copies of the guidance to the Division of Drug Information, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, 10001 New Hampshire Ave., Hillandale Building, 4th Floor, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002. Send one self-addressed adhesive label to assist that office in processing your requests. See the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section for electronic access to the guidance document.

    Submit electronic comments on the guidance to http://www.regulations.gov. Submit written comments to the Division of Dockets Management (HFA-305), Food and Drug Administration, 5630 Fishers Lane, Rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Alice Tu, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 22, Rm. 4325, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002, 301-796-7586.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background

    FDA is announcing the availability of a guidance for industry entitled “Over-the-Counter Pediatric Oral Liquid Drug Products Containing Acetaminophen.” Acetaminophen is marketed in many OTC drug products as a pain reliever and fever reducer. Most OTC acetaminophen products are marketed under FDA's ongoing rulemaking to establish a final monograph for OTC internal analgesic, antipyretic, and antirheumatic (IAAA) drug products. These products must conform to the conditions described in FDA's Tentative Final Monograph for Internal Analgesic, Antipyretic, and Antirheumatic Drug Products for Over-the-Counter (OTC) Human Use (the IAAA TFM) 1 and FDA's general regulations for OTC drug marketing (21 CFR 330.1) and labeling (21 CFR 330.10 and part 201). They also must be labeled with acetaminophen-related warnings and other information as specified in 21 CFR 201.326. However, OTC pediatric oral liquid drug products containing acetaminophen have been associated with overdoses due to medication errors that resulted in serious adverse events, including severe liver damage and death. In particular, there have been reports of overdose attributed to confusion between concentrated acetaminophen drops (80 milligrams (mg)/0.8 milliliters (mL) and 80 mg/mL) and acetaminophen oral liquid (160 mg/5 mL).

    1 “Internal Analgesic, Antipyretic, and Antirheumatic Drug Products for Over-the-Counter Human Use; Tentative Final Monograph,” 53 FR 46204 (November 16, 1988). Available at http://www.fda.gov/downloads/Drugs/DevelopmentApprovalProcess/DevelopmentResources/Over-the-CounterOTCDrugs/StatusofOTCRulemakings/UCM078460.pdf.

    This guidance document is part of FDA's ongoing initiative to reduce the risk of acetaminophen-related liver injury associated with all OTC and prescription acetaminophen-containing products. As part of that initiative, in June 2009, three FDA committees, the Drug Safety and Risk Management Advisory Committee, the Nonprescription Drugs Advisory Committee, and the Anesthetic and Life Support Drugs Advisory Committee, met jointly to consider a range of risk reduction measures. Among other measures, these Advisory Committees recommended moving to a single, standardized acetaminophen concentration for OTC pediatric oral liquid drug products because the availability of multiple concentrations causes confusion and errors among both consumers and health care professionals. In May 2011, FDA convened a joint meeting of the Nonprescription Drugs Advisory Committee and the Pediatric Advisory Committee to discuss the use of acetaminophen in children. Shortly before the meeting, the Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA) proposed to voluntarily phase out all of the existing single-ingredient concentrated drop formulations of the OTC, pediatric, oral, liquid acetaminophen drug products and market only the 160 mg/5 mL. At the Advisory Committee meeting, FDA took note of CHPA's voluntary transition to a single concentration of pediatric oral liquid acetaminophen.

    In response to CHPA's voluntary transition to a single concentration of OTC oral liquid acetaminophen products, FDA published a Drug Safety Communication on December 22, 2011, to inform the public of the 160 mg/5 mL concentration now marketed for children ages 2 to 3 years and to recommend that end users of the product read the Drug Facts label to identify the concentration of the oral liquid acetaminophen, dosage, and directions for use.

    FDA issued the draft guidance on October 8, 2014 (79 FR 60854), to address ongoing concerns about the potential for acetaminophen overdose associated with these products and to encourage safer use. Comments on the draft guidance were considered while finalizing this guidance, which has been revised and clarified in some respects.

    This guidance is being issued consistent with FDA's good guidance practices regulation (21 CFR 10.115). The guidance represents the current thinking of FDA on addressing safety achieved through drug product design and labeling to minimize medication errors. It does not establish any rights for any person and is not binding on FDA or the public. You can use an alternative approach if it satisfies the requirements of the applicable statutes and regulations.

    II. Comments

    Interested persons may submit either electronic comments regarding this document to http://www.regulations.gov or written comments to the Division of Dockets Management (see ADDRESSES). It is only necessary to send one set of comments. Identify comments with the docket number found in brackets in the heading of this document. Received comments may be seen in the Division of Dockets Management between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, and will be posted to the docket at http://www.regulations.gov.

    III. Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

    This guidance refers to a previously approved collection of information found in FDA regulations. The collection of information is subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA) (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520). The collection of information referenced in this guidance that pertain to the format and content requirements for OTC drug product labeling (§ 201.66) have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0340. The labeling requirements in § 201.326 are not subject to review by OMB because they do not constitute a “collection of information” under the PRA. Rather, the labeling statements are a “public disclosure of information originally supplied by the Federal government to the recipient for the purpose of disclosure to the public” (5 CFR 1320.3(c)(2)).

    IV. Electronic Access

    Persons with access to the Internet may obtain the document at eitherhttp://www.fda.gov/Drugs/GuidanceComplianceRegulatoryInformation/Guidances/default.htm or http://www.regulations.gov.

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Leslie Kux, Associate Commissioner for Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19178 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4164-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES National Institutes of Health National Cancer Institute; Notice of Open Meeting

    Pursuant to section 10(a) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. App.), notice is hereby given of a meeting of the National Cancer Institute Clinical Trials and Translational Research Advisory Committee.

    The meeting will be open to the public, with attendance limited to space available. Individuals who plan to attend and need special assistance, such as sign language interpretation or other reasonable accommodations, should notify the Contact Person listed below in advance of the meeting. The meeting will also be videocast and can be accessed from the NIH Videocasting and Podcasting Web site (http://videocast.nih.gov/).

    Name of Committee: National Cancer Institute Clinical Trials and Translational Research Advisory Committee.

    Date: November 4, 2015.

    Time: 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

    Agenda: Strategic Discussion of NCI's Clinical and Translational Research Programs.

    Place: National Institutes of Health, Building 31, C-Wing, 6th Floor, Room 10, 31 Center Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892.

    Contact Person: Sheila A. Prindiville, MD, MPH, Director, Coordinating Center for Clinical Trials, National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute, 9609 Medical Center Drive, Room 6W136, Rockville, MD 20850, 240-276-6173, [email protected].

    Any interested person may file written comments with the committee by forwarding the statement to the Contact Person listed on this notice. The statement should include the name, address, telephone number and when applicable, the business or professional affiliation of the interested person.

    In the interest of security, NIH has instituted stringent procedures for entrance onto the NIH campus. All visitor vehicles, including taxicabs, hotel, and airport shuttles will be inspected before being allowed on campus. Visitors will be asked to show one form of identification (for example, a government-issued photo ID, driver's license, or passport) and to state the purpose of their visit.

    Information is also available on the Institute's/Center's home page: http://deainfo.nci.nih.gov/advisory/ctac/ctac.htm, where an agenda and any additional information for the meeting will be posted when available.

    (Catalogue of Federal Domestic Assistance Program Nos. 93.392, Cancer Construction; 93.393, Cancer Cause and Prevention Research; 93.394, Cancer Detection and Diagnosis Research; 93.395, Cancer Treatment Research; 93.396, Cancer Biology Research; 93.397, Cancer Centers Support; 93.398, Cancer Research Manpower; 93.399, Cancer Control, National Institutes of Health, HHS)
    Dated: July 31, 2015. David Clary, Program Analyst, Office of Federal Advisory Committee Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19193 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4140-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES National Institutes of Health Submission for OMB Review; 30 Day Comment Request; Post-Award Reporting Requirements Including Research Performance Progress Report Collection (OD/OPERA) SUMMARY:

    Under the provisions of section 3507(a)(1)(D) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) a request for review and approval of the information collection listed below. This proposed information collection was previously published in the Federal Register on March 16, 2015, Volume 80, No. 50, pages 13568-13569 and allowed 60 days for public comment. No public comments were received. The purpose of this notice is to allow an additional 30 days for public comment. The NIH may not conduct or sponsor, and the respondent is not required to respond to, an information collection that has been extended, revised, or implemented on or after October 1, 1995, unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

    Direct Comments to OMB: Written comments and/or suggestions regarding the item(s) contained in this notice, especially regarding the estimated public burden and associated response time, should be directed to the: Office of Management and Budget, Office of Regulatory Affairs, [email protected] or by fax to 202-395-6974, Attention: Desk Officer for NIH.

    Comments Due Date: Comments regarding this information collection are best assured of having their full effect if received within 30 days of the date of this publication.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    To request more information on the proposed project or to obtain a copy of the data collection plans and instruments, contact: Ms. Mikia Currie, Division of Grants Policy, Office of Policy for Extramural Research Administration, NIH, Rockledge 1 Building, Room 3505, 6705 Rockledge Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892-7974, or call non-toll-free number (301) 435-0941, or Email your request, including your address to: [email protected]

    Proposed Collection: Public Health Service (PHS) Post-award Reporting Requirements. Revision, OMB 0925-0002, Expiration Date 8/31/2015. Form numbers: PHS 2590, PHS 416-7, PHS 2271, PHS 3734, PHS 6031-1, and HHS 568.

    Need and Use of Information Collection: The RPPR is now required to be used by all NIH, Food and Drug Administration, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) grantees. Interim progress reports are required to continue support of a PHS grant for each budget year within a competitive segment. The phased transition to the RPPR required the maintenance of dual reporting processes for a period of time. Continued use of the PHS Non-competing Continuation Progress Report (PHS 2590), exists for a small group of grantees. This collection also includes other PHS post-award reporting requirements: PHS 416-7 NRSA Termination Notice, PHS 2271 Statement of Appointment, 6031-1 NRSA Annual Payback Activities Certification, HHS 568 Final Invention Statement and Certification, Final Progress Report instructions, iEdison, and PHS 3734 Statement Relinquishing Interests and Rights in a PHS Research Grant. The PHS 416-7, 2271, and 6031-1 are used by NRSA recipients to activate, terminate, and provide for payback of a NRSA. Closeout of an award requires a Final Invention Statement (HHS 568) and Final Progress Report. iEdison allows grantees and federal agencies to meet statutory requirements for reporting inventions and patents. The PHS 3734 serves as the official record of grantee relinquishment of a PHS award when an award is transferred from one grantee institution to another. The SBIR/STTR Life Cycle Certifications are completed by small business grantees once certain milestones are reached during the project period. Pre-award reporting requirements are simultaneously consolidated under 0925-0001.

    OMB approval is requested for 3 years. There are no costs to respondents other than their time. The total estimated annualized burden hours are 531,802.

    Estimated Annualized Burden Hours Information collection forms Number of
  • respondents
  • Number of
  • responses
  • per
  • respondent
  • Average
  • burden per
  • response
  • (in hours)
  • Total
  • annual
  • burden
  • hours
  • Reporting PHS 416-7 12,580 1 30/60 6,290 PHS 6031-1 1,778 1 20/60 593 PHS 568 11,180 1 5/60 932 iEdison 5,697 1 15/60 1,424 PHS 2271 22,035 1 15/60 5,509 PHS 2590 243 1 15 3,645 RPPR 32,098 1 15 481,470 Biosketch 2,544 1 2 5,088 Data Tables 758 1 4 3,032 PHS Inclusion Enrollment Report 2,544 1 1 2,544 Trainee Diversity Report 480 1 15/60 120 Publication Reporting 32,341 3 5/60 8,085 PHS 3734 479 1 30/60 240 Final Progress Report 11,125 1 1 11,125 SBIR/STTR Phase II Final Progress Report 1,330 1 1 1,330 Reporting Burden Total 531,427 Recordkeeping SBIR/STTR Life Cycle Certification 1,500 1 15/60 375 Grand Total 531,802
    Dated: July 29, 2015. Lawrence A. Tabak, Deputy Director, National Institutes of Health.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19253 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4140-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES National Institutes of Health National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health; Notice of Meeting

    Pursuant to section 10(d) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. App.), notice is hereby given of a meeting of the National Advisory Council for Complementary and Integrative Health.

    The meeting will be open to the public as indicated below, with attendance limited to space available. Individuals who plan to attend and need special assistance, such as sign language interpretation or other reasonable accommodations, should notify the Contact Person listed below in advance of the meeting.

    The meeting will be closed to the public in accordance with the provisions set forth in sections 552b(c)(4) and 552b(c)(6), Title 5 U.S.C., as amended. The grant applications and the discussions could disclose confidential trade secrets or commercial property such as patentable material, and personal information concerning individuals associated with the grant applications, the disclosure of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.

    Name of Committee: National Advisory Council for Complementary and Integrative Health.

    Date: August 26, 2015.

    Open: 1:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m.

    Agenda: Concept Review—Mechanistic Studies of Complementary and Integrative Mind and Body and Body Interventions Supported by NCCIH.

    Place: National Institutes of Health, Two Democracy Plaza, 6707 Democracy Boulevard, Bethesda, MD 20892 (Telephone Conference Call).

    Closed: 1:20 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.

    Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications.

    Place: National Institutes of Health, Two Democracy Plaza, 6707 Democracy Boulevard, Bethesda, MD 20892 (Telephone Conference Call).

    Contact Person: Martin H. Goldrosen, Ph.D., Director, Division of Extramural Activities, National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, NIH, 6707 Democracy Blvd., Ste. 401, Bethesda, MD 20892-5475, (301) 594-2014, [email protected].

    Any interested person may file written comments with the committee by forwarding the statement to the Contact Person listed on this notice. The statement should include the name, address, telephone number and when applicable, the business or professional affiliation of the interested person.

    In the interest of security, NIH has instituted stringent procedures for entrance onto the NIH campus. All visitor vehicles, including taxicabs, hotel, and airport shuttles will be inspected before being allowed on campus. Visitors will be asked to show one form of identification (for example, a government-issued photo ID, driver's license, or passport) and to state the purpose of their visit.

    Information is also available on the Institute's/Center's home page: https://nccih.nih.gov/about/naccih, where an agenda and any additional information for the meeting will be posted when available.

    (Catalogue of Federal Domestic Assistance Program Nos. 93.213, Research and Training in Complementary and Alternative Medicine, National Institutes of Health, HHS)
    Dated: July 30, 2015. Michelle Trout, Program Analyst, Office of Federal Advisory Committee Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19174 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4140-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES National Institutes of Health National Institute on Aging; Notice of Closed Meeting

    Pursuant to section 10(d) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. App.), notice is hereby given of the following meeting.

    The meeting will be closed to the public in accordance with the provisions set forth in sections 552b(c)(4) and 552b(c)(6), Title 5 U.S.C., as amended. The grant applications and the discussions could disclose confidential trade secrets or commercial property such as patentable material, and personal information concerning individuals associated with the grant applications, the disclosure of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.

    Name of Committee: National Institute on Aging Special Emphasis Panel; Albert Einstein Aging Study.

    Date: September 17, 2015.

    Time: 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

    Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications.

    Place: National Institute on Aging, Gateway Building, Suite 2C212, 7201 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, MD 20892 (Telephone Conference Call).

    Contact Person: Carmen Moten, MPH, Ph.D., Scientific Review Officer, National Institute on Aging, Gateway Building, 7201 Wisconsin Avenue, Suite 2C212, Bethesda, MD 20892, 301-402-7703, [email protected]

    (Catalogue of Federal Domestic Assistance Program Nos. 93.866, Aging Research, National Institutes of Health, HHS)
    Dated: July 31, 2015. David Clary, Program Analyst, Office of Federal Advisory Committee Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19192 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4140-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES National Institutes of Health Submission for OMB Review; 30 Day Comment Request; PHS Applications and Pre-Award Reporting Requirements (OD/OPERA) SUMMARY:

    Under the provisions of Section 3507(a)(1)(D) of the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995, the Office of the Director (OD), Office of Extramural Research (OER), the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) a request for review and approval of the information collection listed below. This proposed information collection was previously published in the Federal Register on March 16, 2015, Volume 80, No. 50, pages 13567-13568 and allowed 60 days for public comment. No public comments were received. The purpose of this notice is to allow an additional 30 days for public comment. The NIH may not conduct or sponsor, and the respondent is not required to respond to, an information collection that has been extended, revised, or implemented on or after October 1, 1995, unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

    Direct Comments to OMB: Written comments and/or suggestions regarding the item(s) contained in this notice, especially regarding the estimated public burden and associated response time should be sent via email to [email protected] or by fax to 202-395-6974, Attention: Desk Officer for NIH.

    Comments Due Date: Comments regarding this information collection are best assured of having their full effect if received within 30 days of the date of this publication.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    To request more information on the proposed project or to obtain a copy of the data collection plans and instruments, contact Ms. Mikia Currie, Project Clearance Branch, Office of Policy for Extramural Research Administration, NIH, Rockledge 1 Building, Suite 350, 6705 Rockledge Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892-7974, or call non-toll-free number (301) 435-0941, or Email your request, including your address to: [email protected]

    Proposed Collection: Public Health Service (PHS) Applications and Pre-award Reporting Requirements. Revision, OMB 0925-0001, Expiration Date 08/31/2015. Form numbers: PHS 398, PHS416-1, 416-5, and PHS 6031.

    Need and Use of Information Collection: This collection includes PHS applications and pre-award reporting requirements: PHS 398 [paper] Public Health Service Grant Application forms and instructions; PHS 398 [electronic] PHS Grant Application component forms and agency specific instructions used in combination with the SF424 (R&R); PHS Fellowship Supplemental Form and agency specific instructions used in combination with the SF424 (R&R) forms/instructions for Fellowships [electronic]; PHS 416-1 Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award Individual Fellowship Application Instructions and Forms used only for a change of sponsoring institution application [paper]; Instructions for a Change of Sponsoring Institution for NRSA Fellowships (F30, F31, F32 and F33) and non-NRSA Fellowships; PHS 416-5 Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award Individual Fellowship Activation Notice; and PHS 6031 Payback Agreement. The PHS 398 (paper and electronic), PHS 416-1, 416-5, and PHS 6031 are currently approved under 0925-0001. All forms expire 8/31/2015. Post-award reporting requirements are simultaneously consolidated under 0925-0002, and include the Research Performance Progress Report (RPPR). The PHS 398 and SF424 applications are used by applicants to request federal assistance funds for traditional investigator-initiated research projects and to request access to databases and other PHS resources. The PHS 416-1 is used only for a change of sponsoring institution application. PHS Fellowship Supplemental Form and agency specific instructions is used in combination with the SF424 (R&R) forms/instructions for Fellowships and is used by individuals to apply for direct research training support. Awards are made to individual applicants for specified training proposals in biomedical and behavioral research, selected as a result of a national competition. The PHS 416-5 is used by individuals to indicate the start of their NRSA awards. The PHS 6031 Payback Agreement is used by individuals at the time of activation to certify agreement to fulfill the payback provisions. The VCOC Certification and SBIR/STTR Funding Agreement Certifications are used by small business applicants.

    OMB approval is requested for 3 years. There are no costs to respondents other than their time. The total estimated annualized burden hours are 2,771,550.

    Estimated Annualized Burden Hours Information collection forms Number of
  • respondents
  • Number of
  • responses per
  • respondent
  • Average
  • burden per
  • response
  • (in hours)
  • Total annual
  • burden hours
  • PHS 398—Paper 4,247 1 35 148,645 PHS 398/424—Electronic 82,431 1 22 1,813,482 PHS Assignment Request Form 37,120 1 30/60 18,560 PHS 398 Cover Page Supplement 74,239 1 1 74,239 PHS Inclusion Enrollment Report 54,838 1 1 54,838 PHS 398 Modular Budget 56,693 1 1 56,693 PHS 398 Training Budget 1,122 1 2 2,244 PHS 398 Training Subaward Budget Attachment(s) Form 561 1 90/60 842 PHS 398 Research Plan 70,866 1 3 212,598 PHS 398 Research Training Program Plan 1,122 1 3 3,366 Data Tables 1,515 1 4 6,060 PHS 398 Career Development Award Supplemental Form 2,251 1 3 6,753 Biosketch (424 Electronic) 80,946 1 2 161,892 PHS Fellowship—Electronic 6,707 1 16 107,312 PHS Fellowship Supplemental Form (includes F reference letters) 6,707 1 12.5 83,838 PHS Assignment Request Form 3,354 1 30/60 1,677 PHS Inclusion Enrollment Report 3,354 1 1 3,354 Biosketch (Fellowship) 6,707 1 2 13,414 416-1 29 1 10 290 PHS 416-5 6,707 1 5/60 559 PHS 6031 6,217 1 5/60 518 VCOC Certification 6 1 5/60 1 SBIR/STTR Funding Agreement Certification 1,500 1 15/60 375 Total Annual Burden Hours 2,771,550
    Dated: July 29, 2015. Lawrence A. Tabak, Deputy Director, National Institutes of Health.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19250 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4140-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Federal Emergency Management Agency [Internal Agency Docket No. FEMA-4230-DR] Docket ID FEMA-2015-0002 Kansas; Major Disaster and Related Determinations AGENCY:

    Federal Emergency Management Agency, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    This is a notice of the Presidential declaration of a major disaster for the State of Kansas (FEMA-4230-DR), dated July 20, 2015, and related determinations.

    DATES:

    Effective date: July 20, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Dean Webster, Office of Response and Recovery, Federal Emergency Management Agency, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472, (202) 646-2833.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Notice is hereby given that, in a letter dated July 20, 2015, the President issued a major disaster declaration under the authority of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, 42 U.S.C. 5121 et seq. (the “Stafford Act”), as follows:

    I have determined that the damage in certain areas of the State of Kansas resulting from severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds, and flooding during the period of May 4 to June 21, 2015, is of sufficient severity and magnitude to warrant a major disaster declaration under the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, 42 U.S.C. 5121 et seq. (the “Stafford Act”). Therefore, I declare that such a major disaster exists in the State of Kansas.

    In order to provide Federal assistance, you are hereby authorized to allocate from funds available for these purposes such amounts as you find necessary for Federal disaster assistance and administrative expenses.

    You are authorized to provide Public Assistance in the designated areas and Hazard Mitigation throughout the State. Consistent with the requirement that Federal assistance be supplemental, any Federal funds provided under the Stafford Act for Hazard Mitigation will be limited to 75 percent of the total eligible costs. Federal funds provided under the Stafford Act for Public Assistance also will be limited to 75 percent of the total eligible costs, with the exception of projects that meet the eligibility criteria for a higher Federal cost-sharing percentage under the Public Assistance Alternative Procedures Pilot Program for Debris Removal implemented pursuant to section 428 of the Stafford Act.

    Further, you are authorized to make changes to this declaration for the approved assistance to the extent allowable under the Stafford Act.

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) hereby gives notice that pursuant to the authority vested in the Administrator, under Executive Order 12148, as amended, Laura S. Hevesi, of FEMA is appointed to act as the Federal Coordinating Officer for this major disaster.

    The following areas of the State of Kansas have been designated as adversely affected by this major disaster:

    Atchison, Barton, Brown, Butler, Chase, Chautauqua, Cherokee, Cheyenne, Clay, Cloud, Coffey, Cowley, Doniphan, Edwards, Elk, Ellsworth, Franklin, Gray, Greenwood, Harper, Haskell, Hodgeman, Jackson, Jefferson, Jewell, Lyon, Marion, Marshall, McPherson, Meade, Miami, Morris, Nemaha, Neosho, Osage, Pottawatomie, Republic, Rice, Stevens, Sumner, Wabaunsee, and Washington Counties for Public Assistance.

    All areas within the State of Kansas are eligible for assistance under the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program.

    The following Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Numbers (CFDA) are to be used for reporting and drawing funds: 97.030, Community Disaster Loans; 97.031, Cora Brown Fund; 97.032, Crisis Counseling; 97.033, Disaster Legal Services; 97.034, Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA); 97.046, Fire Management Assistance Grant; 97.048, Disaster Housing Assistance to Individuals and Households In Presidentially Declared Disaster Areas; 97.049, Presidentially Declared Disaster Assistance—Disaster Housing Operations for Individuals and Households; 97.050, Presidentially Declared Disaster Assistance to Individuals and Households—Other Needs; 97.036, Disaster Grants—Public Assistance (Presidentially Declared Disasters); 97.039, Hazard Mitigation Grant.

    W. Craig Fugate, Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19221 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9112-23-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Federal Emergency Management Agency [Internal Agency Docket No. FEMA-4229-DR; Docket ID FEMA-2015-0002] Colorado; Major Disaster and Related Determinations AGENCY:

    Federal Emergency Management Agency, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    This is a notice of the Presidential declaration of a major disaster for the State of Colorado (FEMA-4229-DR), dated July 16, 2015, and related determinations.

    DATES:

    Effective date: July 16, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Dean Webster, Office of Response and Recovery, Federal Emergency Management Agency, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472, (202) 646-2833.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Notice is hereby given that, in a letter dated July 16, 2015, the President issued a major disaster declaration under the authority of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, 42 U.S.C. 5121 et seq. (the “Stafford Act”), as follows:

    I have determined that the damage in certain areas of the State of Colorado resulting from severe storms, tornadoes, flooding, landslides, and mudslides during the period of May 4 to June 16, 2015, is of sufficient severity and magnitude to warrant a major disaster declaration under the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, 42 U.S.C. 5121 et seq. (the “Stafford Act”). Therefore, I declare that such a major disaster exists in the State of Colorado.

    In order to provide Federal assistance, you are hereby authorized to allocate from funds available for these purposes such amounts as you find necessary for Federal disaster assistance and administrative expenses.

    You are authorized to provide Public Assistance in the designated areas and Hazard Mitigation throughout the State. Consistent with the requirement that Federal assistance be supplemental, any Federal funds provided under the Stafford Act for Hazard Mitigation will be limited to 75 percent of the total eligible costs. Federal funds provided under the Stafford Act for Public Assistance also will be limited to 75 percent of the total eligible costs, with the exception of projects that meet the eligibility criteria for a higher Federal cost-sharing percentage under the Public Assistance Alternative Procedures Pilot Program for Debris Removal implemented pursuant to section 428 of the Stafford Act.

    Further, you are authorized to make changes to this declaration for the approved assistance to the extent allowable under the Stafford Act.

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) hereby gives notice that pursuant to the authority vested in the Administrator, under Executive Order 12148, as amended, Dolph A. Diemont, of FEMA is appointed to act as the Federal Coordinating Officer for this major disaster.

    The following areas of the State of Colorado have been designated as adversely affected by this major disaster:

    Baca, Elbert, El Paso, Fremont, Logan, Morgan, Pueblo, Saguache, Sedgwick, Washington, and Yuma Counties for Public Assistance.

    All areas within the State of Colorado are eligible for assistance under the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program.

    The following Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Numbers (CFDA) are to be used for reporting and drawing funds: 97.030, Community Disaster Loans; 97.031, Cora Brown Fund; 97.032, Crisis Counseling; 97.033, Disaster Legal Services; 97.034, Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA); 97.046, Fire Management Assistance Grant; 97.048, Disaster Housing Assistance to Individuals and Households In Presidentially Declared Disaster Areas; 97.049, Presidentially Declared Disaster Assistance—Disaster Housing Operations for Individuals and Households; 97.050, Presidentially Declared Disaster Assistance to Individuals and Households—Other Needs; 97.036, Disaster Grants—Public Assistance (Presidentially Declared Disasters); 97.039, Hazard Mitigation Grant.

    W. Craig Fugate, Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19251 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9111-23-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Federal Emergency Management Agency [Internal Agency Docket No. FEMA-4216-DR; Docket ID FEMA-2015-0002] Kentucky; Amendment No. 2 to Notice of a Major Disaster Declaration AGENCY:

    Federal Emergency Management Agency, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    This notice amends the notice of a major disaster declaration for the Commonwealth of Kentucky (FEMA-4216-DR), dated April 30, 2015, and related determinations.

    DATES:

    Effective date: July 24, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Dean Webster, Office of Response and Recovery, Federal Emergency Management Agency, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472, (202) 646-2833.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The notice of a major disaster declaration for the Commonwealth of Kentucky is hereby amended to include the following areas among those areas determined to have been adversely affected by the event declared a major disaster by the President in his declaration of April 30, 2015.

    Adair, Anderson, Butler, Edmonson, Franklin, Lewis, Lincoln, Magoffin, McCracken, Rockcastle, Union, and Woodford Counties for Public Assistance.

    Adair, Anderson, Butler, Edmonson, Franklin, Lewis, Lincoln, Magoffin, McCracken, Rockcastle, Union, and Woodford Counties for snow assistance under the Public Assistance program for any continuous 48-hour period during or proximate the incident period.

    Clark and Letcher Counties for snow assistance under the Public Assistance program for any continuous 48-hour period during or proximate the incident period (already designated for Public Assistance).

    The following Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Numbers (CFDA) are to be used for reporting and drawing funds: 97.030, Community Disaster Loans; 97.031, Cora Brown Fund; 97.032, Crisis Counseling; 97.033, Disaster Legal Services; 97.034, Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA); 97.046, Fire Management Assistance Grant; 97.048, Disaster Housing Assistance to Individuals and Households In Presidentially Declared Disaster Areas; 97.049, Presidentially Declared Disaster Assistance—Disaster Housing Operations for Individuals and Households; 97.050, Presidentially Declared Disaster Assistance to Individuals and Households—Other Needs; 97.036, Disaster Grants—Public Assistance (Presidentially Declared Disasters); 97.039, Hazard Mitigation Grant.

    W. Craig Fugate, Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19252 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9111-23-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Federal Emergency Management Agency [Docket ID: FEMA-2015-0016; OMB No. 1660-0131] Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment (THIRA)—State Preparedness Report (SPR) Unified Reporting Tool AGENCY:

    Federal Emergency Management Agency, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will submit the information collection abstracted below to the Office of Management and Budget for review and clearance in accordance with the requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. The submission will describe the nature of the information collection, the categories of respondents, the estimated burden (i.e., the time, effort and resources used by respondents to respond) and cost, and the actual data collection instruments FEMA will use.

    DATES:

    Comments must be submitted on or before September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit written comments on the proposed information collection to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget. Comments should be addressed to the Desk Officer for the Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency, and sent via electronic mail to [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Requests for additional information or copies of the information collection should be made to Director, Records Management Division, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472-3100, or email address [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This information collection was previously published in the Federal Register on May 29, 2015, at 80 FR 30696 with a 60 day public comment period. FEMA received one request for a copy of the proposed information collection which was sent to the requester on May 29, 2015. The purpose of this notice is to notify the public that FEMA will submit the information collection abstracted below to the Office of Management and Budget for review and clearance.

    Collection of Information

    Title: Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment (THIRA)—State Preparedness Report (SPR) Unified Reporting Tool.

    Type of information collection: Revision of a currently approved information collection.

    OMB Number: 1660-0131.

    Form Titles and Numbers: FEMA Form 008-0-19, THIRA-SPR Unified Reporting Tool; FEMA Form 008-0-20, THIRA-SPR Unified Reporting Tool; FEMA Form 008-0-23, THIRA/SPR After Action Conference Calls.

    Abstract: This package is a revision to the collection originally approved as the State Preparedness Report. The revised name more accurately reflects exactly what information is collected and how. It serves as a report on the current capability levels and a description of targeted capability levels from all states and territories receiving Federal preparedness assistance administered by the Department of Homeland Security.

    Affected Public: State, Local or Tribal Government.

    Estimated Number of Respondents: 123.

    Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 71,363 hours.

    Estimated Cost: The estimated annual cost to respondents for the hour burden is $3,234,884.79. The estimated annual cost to respondents operations and maintenance costs for technical services is $10,833,275. There are no annual start-up or capital costs. The cost to the Federal Government is $2,154,074.

    Janice Waller, Acting Director, Records Management Division, Mission Support Bureau, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Department of Homeland Security.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19220 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9111-46-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Federal Emergency Management Agency [Internal Agency Docket No. FEMA-4222-DR; Docket ID FEMA-2015-0002] Oklahoma; Amendment No. 11 to Notice of a Major Disaster Declaration AGENCY:

    Federal Emergency Management Agency, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    This notice amends the notice of a major disaster for the State of Oklahoma (FEMA-4222-DR), dated May 26, 2015, and related determinations.

    DATES:

    Effective date: July 21, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Dean Webster, Office of Response and Recovery, Federal Emergency Management Agency, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472, (202) 646-2833.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Notice is hereby given that the incident period is now May 5, 2015, through and including June 22, 2015.

    The following Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Numbers (CFDA) are to be used for reporting and drawing funds: 97.030, Community Disaster Loans; 97.031, Cora Brown Fund; 97.032, Crisis Counseling; 97.033, Disaster Legal Services; 97.034, Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA); 97.046, Fire Management Assistance Grant; 97.048, Disaster Housing Assistance to Individuals and Households In Presidentially Declared Disaster Areas; 97.049, Presidentially Declared Disaster Assistance—Disaster Housing Operations for Individuals and Households; 97.050, Presidentially Declared Disaster Assistance to Individuals and Households—Other Needs; 97.036, Disaster Grants—Public Assistance (Presidentially Declared Disasters); 97.039, Hazard Mitigation Grant.

    W. Craig Fugate, Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19218 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9111-23-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Federal Emergency Management Agency [Internal Agency Docket No. FEMA-4222-DR; Docket ID FEMA-2015-0002] Oklahoma; Amendment No. 12 to Notice of a Major Disaster Declaration AGENCY:

    Federal Emergency Management Agency, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    This notice amends the notice of a major disaster declaration for the State of Oklahoma (FEMA-4222-DR), dated May 26, 2015, and related determinations.

    DATES:

    Effective date: July 24, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Dean Webster, Office of Response and Recovery, Federal Emergency Management Agency, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472, (202) 646-2833.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The notice of a major disaster declaration for the State of Oklahoma is hereby amended to include the following areas among those areas determined to have been adversely affected by the event declared a major disaster by the President in his declaration of May 26, 2015.

    Cherokee and Lincoln Counties for Individual Assistance.

    Adair, Coal, Delaware, Garvin, Hughes, Logan, Love, Murray, Ottawa, and Pontotoc Counties for Individual Assistance (already designated for Public Assistance).

    The following Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Numbers (CFDA) are to be used for reporting and drawing funds: 97.030, Community Disaster Loans; 97.031, Cora Brown Fund; 97.032, Crisis Counseling; 97.033, Disaster Legal Services; 97.034, Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA); 97.046, Fire Management Assistance Grant; 97.048, Disaster Housing Assistance to Individuals and Households In Presidentially Declared Disaster Areas; 97.049, Presidentially Declared Disaster Assistance—Disaster Housing Operations for Individuals and Households; 97.050 Presidentially Declared Disaster Assistance to Individuals and Households—Other Needs; 97.036, Disaster Grants—Public Assistance (Presidentially Declared Disasters); 97.039, Hazard Mitigation Grant.

    W. Craig Fugate, Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19219 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9111-23-P
    INTER-AMERICAN FOUNDATION Sunshine Act Meetings TIME AND DATE:

    August 10, 2015, 9 a.m.-1 p.m.

    PLACE:

    Inter-American Foundation, 1331 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Suite 1200 North Building, Washington, DC 20004.

    STATUS:

    Meeting of the Board of Directors, Open to the Public.

    MATTERS TO BE CONSIDERED:

    Approval of the Minutes of the November 10, 2014, Meeting of the Board of Directors & Advisory Council Management Report 2016 Board Meetings and Trip Dates Adjournment CONTACT PERSON FOR MORE INFORMATION:

    Paul Zimmerman, General Counsel, (202) 683-7118.

    Paul Zimmerman, General Counsel.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19317 Filed 8-3-15; 11:15 am] BILLING CODE 7025-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR National Park Service [NPS-WASO-NAGPRA-18366; PPWOCRADN0-PCU00RP15.R50000] Notice of Intent To Repatriate Cultural Items: Portland Art Museum, Portland, OR AGENCY:

    National Park Service, Interior.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Portland Art Museum, in consultation with the appropriate Indian tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations, has determined that the cultural items listed in this notice meet the definition of sacred objects. Lineal descendants or representatives of any Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to claim these cultural items should submit a written request to the Portland Art Museum. If no additional claimants come forward, transfer of control of the cultural items to the lineal descendants, Indian tribes, or Native Hawaiian organizations stated in this notice may proceed.

    DATES:

    Lineal descendants or representatives of any Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to claim these cultural items should submit a written request with information in support of the claim to the Portland Art Museum at the address in this notice by September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Deana Dartt, Curator of Native American Art, Portland Art Museum, 1219 SW. Park Ave., Portland, OR 97209, telephone (503) 276-4294, email [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Notice is here given in accordance with the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), 25 U.S.C. 3005, of the intent to repatriate cultural items under the control of the Portland Art Museum that meet the definition of sacred objects under 25 U.S.C. 3001.

    This notice is published as part of the National Park Service's administrative responsibilities under NAGPRA, 25 U.S.C. 3003(d) (3). The determinations in this notice are the sole responsibility of the museum, institution, or Federal agency that has control of the Native American cultural items. The National Park Service is not responsible for the determinations in this notice.

    History and Description of the Cultural Items

    Between 1970 and 1990, 18 medicine bundles were removed from the Crow Indian Reservation in Crow Agency, MT. The bundles were sold over two decades by Native antiquities and arts dealers to collector Elizabeth Cole Butler. Butler donated them to the museum beginning in the 1980s and until her death in 2004. The 18 bundles are all considered sacred objects.

    The 18 medicine bundles were first identified as Crow by the dealers that sold them to Butler. In 1994 Crow tribal representative John Pretty-on-Top responded to the NAGPRA summary of Crow objects sent to the Crow Tribe of Montana in 1993. Pretty-on-Top concluded that the bundles would not be of interest to the tribe as a whole since bundles are exclusively owned by individuals. In August 2014 Timothy McCleary was consulted about the bundles. On September 17, 2014, McCleary presented the issue of the 18 bundles held by the Portland Art Museum to the Crow Cultural Committee. The Crow Cultural Committee determined that a claim for the 18 sacred objects should be made by the Crow Tribe of Montana.

    Determinations Made by the Portland Art Museum

    Officials of the Portland Art Museum have determined that:

    • Pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(3)(C), the 18 cultural items described above are specific ceremonial objects needed by traditional Native American religious leaders for the practice of traditional Native American religions by their present-day adherents.

    • Pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(2), there is a relationship of shared group identity that can be reasonably traced between the sacred objects and the Crow Tribe of Montana.

    Additional Requestors and Disposition

    Lineal descendants or representatives of any Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to claim these cultural items should submit a written request with information in support of the claim to Deana Dartt, Portland Art Museum, 1219 SW. Park Ave., Portland, OR 97205, telephone (503) 276-4294, email [email protected], by September 4, 2015. After that date, if no additional claimants have come forward, transfer of control of the sacred objects to the Crow Tribe of Montana may proceed.

    The Portland Art Museum is responsible for notifying the Crow Tribe of Montana that this notice has been published.

    Dated: June 29, 2015. Melanie O'Brien, Manager, National NAGPRA Program.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19238 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310-12-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR National Park Service [NPS-WASO-NAGPRA-18597; PPWOCRADN0-PCU00RP14.R50000] Notice of Inventory Completion: Oregon State University, Department of Anthropology, Corvallis, OR; Correction AGENCY:

    National Park Service, Interior.

    ACTION:

    Notice; correction.

    SUMMARY:

    The Oregon State University Department of Anthropology has corrected an inventory of human remains, published in a Notice of Inventory Completion in the Federal Register on June 24, 2014. This notice corrects the minimum number of individuals listed in that notice.

    ADDRESSES:

    Brenda Kellar, Oregon State University, Department of Anthropology, 238 Waldo Hall, Corvallis, OR 97333, telephone (541) 737-4296, email [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Notice is here given in accordance with the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), 25 U.S.C. 3003, of the correction of an inventory of human remains under the control of the Oregon State University Department of Anthropology, Corvallis, OR. The human remains were removed from Casey, Christian, and Scott Counties, KY.

    This notice is published as part of the National Park Service's administrative responsibilities under NAGPRA, 25 U.S.C. 3003(d)(3). The determinations in this notice are the sole responsibility of the museum, institution, or Federal agency that has control of the Native American human remains. The National Park Service is not responsible for the determinations in this notice.

    This notice corrects the minimum number of individuals published in a Notice of Inventory Completion in the Federal Register (79 FR 35779-35780, June 24, 2014). Re-inventory for repatriation discovered changes in the number of remains.

    Correction

    In the Federal Register (79 FR 35779-35780, June 24, 2014), paragraph 9, sentence 1 is corrected by substituting the following sentence:

    Between 1930 and 1971, human remains representing, at minimum, three individuals were removed from an unknown site in Casey County, KY, by Dr. Neumann.

    In the Federal Register (79 FR 35779-35780, June 24, 2014), paragraph 11, sentence 1 is corrected by substituting the following sentence:

    Between 1930 and 1971, human remains representing, at minimum, two individuals were removed from an unknown site in Scott County, KY, by Dr. Neumann.

    In the Federal Register (79 FR 35779-35780, June 24, 2014), paragraph 14, sentence 3 is corrected by substituting the following sentence:

    Pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(9), the human remains described in this notice represent the physical remains of 10 individuals of Native American ancestry.

    The Oregon State University Department of Anthropology is responsible for notifying the Absentee-Shawnee Tribe of Indians of Oklahoma; Cherokee Nation; Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians; Eastern Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma; Miami Tribe of Oklahoma; Shawnee Tribe; and United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians in Oklahoma that this notice has been published.

    Dated: June 29, 2015. Melanie O'Brien, Manager, National NAGPRA Program.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19241 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4312-50-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR National Park Service [NPS-WASO-NAGPRA-18496; PPWOCRADN0-PCU00RP14.R50000] Notice of Inventory Completion: Tennessee Valley Authority, Knoxville, TN AGENCY:

    National Park Service, Interior.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) has completed an inventory of human remains in consultation with the appropriate federally recognized Indian tribes and has determined that there is no cultural affiliation between the human remains and any present-day federally recognized Indian tribes. Representatives of any federally recognized Indian tribe not identified in this notice that wish to request transfer of control of these human remains should submit a written request to TVA. If no additional requestors come forward, transfer of control of the human remains to the federally recognized Indian tribe stated in this notice may proceed.

    DATES:

    Representatives of any federally recognized Indian tribe not identified in this notice that wish to request transfer of control of these human remains should submit a written request with information in support of the request to TVA at the address in this notice by September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Dr. Thomas O. Maher, TVA, 400 West Summit Hill Drive, WT11D, Knoxville, TN 37902-1401, telephone (865) 632-7458, email tomahe[email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Notice is here given in accordance with the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), 25 U.S.C. 3003, of the completion of an inventory of human remains under the control and possession of TVA. The human remains were removed from site 40MI21, in Marion County, TN.

    This notice is published as part of the National Park Service's administrative responsibilities under NAGPRA, 25 U.S.C. 3003(d)(3) and 43 CFR 10.11(d). The determinations in this notice are the sole responsibility of the museum, institution, or Federal agency that has control of the Native American human remains. The National Park Service is not responsible for the determinations in this notice.

    Consultation

    A detailed assessment of the human remains was made by TVA's professional staff in consultation with representatives of the Absentee Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma; Alabama-Coushatta Tribe of Texas (previously listed as the Alabama-Coushatta Tribes of Texas); Alabama-Quassarte Tribal Town; Cherokee Nation; Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians; Eastern Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma; Kialegee Tribal Town; Poarch Band of Creeks (previously listed as the Poarch Band of Creek Indians of Alabama); Shawnee Tribe; The Chickasaw Nation; The Muscogee (Creek) Nation of Oklahoma; The Seminole Nation of Oklahoma; Thlopthlocco Tribal Town; and the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians in Oklahoma.

    History and Description of the Remains

    Between 1964 and 1965, human remains representing, at minimum, two individuals were removed from site 40MI21, in Marion County, TN, by amateur archeologists following the building of Nickajack Dam. TVA has under its control and in its physical possession human remains from one adult male and one adult female. No known individuals were identified. No associated funerary objects are present.

    Ernest A. Bachman and others removed 20 burials from site 40MI21 between 1964 and 1965 and reported on this in the Tennessee Archaeologist (Bachman 1966). Bachman indicated that an erosional trench was being cut through the site as a result of dredging, revealing human burials. Bachman states that some of the non-funerary ceramic artifacts were examined by the University of Tennessee and identified as representing Late Archaic (c. 3000-1000 B.C.) and Woodland (900 B.C.-A.D. 900) components.

    Since no funerary objects accompanied the human remains under the control of TVA, it is not known if they were derived from the Late Archaic or the Woodland occupation. The lack of any detailed information on these human remains leads TVA to determine that they are culturally unidentifiable.

    Determinations Made by the Tennessee Valley Authority

    Officials of TVA have determined that:

    • Pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(9), the human remains described in this notice are Native American based on their presence in prehistoric archeological contexts.

    • Pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(9), the human remains described in this notice represent the physical remains of 2 individuals of Native American ancestry.

    • Pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(2), a relationship of shared group identity cannot be reasonably traced between the Native American human remains and any present-day Indian tribe.

    • According to final judgments of the Indian Claims Commission or the Court of Federal Claims, the land from which the Native American human remains were removed is the aboriginal land of the Cherokee Nation, Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, and the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians in Oklahoma.

    • Pursuant to 43 CFR 10.11(c)(1)(ii), TVA has decided to transfer control of the culturally unidentifiable human remains to the Cherokee Nation, Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, and the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians in Oklahoma.

    Additional Requestors and Disposition

    Representatives of any federally recognized Indian tribe not identified in this notice that wish to request transfer of control of these human remains should submit a written request with information in support of the request to Dr. Thomas O. Maher, TVA, 400 West Summit Hill Drive, WT11D, Knoxville, TN 37902-1401, telephone (865) 632-7458, email [email protected], by September 4, 2015. After that date, if no additional requestors have come forward, transfer of control of the human remains to the Cherokee Nation, Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, and the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians in Oklahoma may proceed.

    TVA is responsible for notifying the Absentee Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma; Alabama-Coushatta Tribe of Texas (previously listed as the Alabama-Coushatta Tribes of Texas); Alabama-Quassarte Tribal Town; Cherokee Nation; Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians; Eastern Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma; Kialegee Tribal Town; Poarch Band of Creeks (previously listed as the Poarch Band of Creek Indians of Alabama); Shawnee Tribe; The Chickasaw Nation; The Muscogee (Creek) Nation of Oklahoma; The Seminole Nation of Oklahoma; Thlopthlocco Tribal Town; and the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians in Oklahoma that this notice has been published.

    Dated: June 29, 2015. Melanie O'Brien, Manager, National NAGPRA Program.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19267 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4312-50-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR National Park Service [NPS-WASO-NAGPRA-18523; PPWOCRADN0-PCU00RP14.R50000] Notice of Intent To Repatriate Cultural Items: Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission, Olympia, WA AGENCY:

    National Park Service, Interior.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission [hereafter State Parks], in consultation with lineal descendants and the appropriate Indian tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations, has determined that the cultural items listed in this notice meet the definition of unassociated funerary objects. Lineal descendants or representatives of any Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to claim these cultural items should submit a written request to State Parks. If no additional claimants come forward, transfer of control of the cultural items to the lineal descendants, Indian tribes, or Native Hawaiian organizations stated in this notice may proceed.

    DATES:

    Lineal descendants or representatives of any Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to claim these cultural items should submit a written request with information in support of the claim to State Parks at the address in this notice by September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Alicia Woods, Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission, P.O. Box 42650, Olympia, WA 98504-2650, telephone (360) 902.0939, email [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Notice is here given in accordance with the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), 25 U.S.C. 3005, of the intent to repatriate cultural items under the control of the State Parks, Olympia, WA, that meet the definition of unassociated funerary objects under 25 U.S.C. 3001.

    This notice is published as part of the National Park Service's administrative responsibilities under NAGPRA, 25 U.S.C. 3003(d)(3). The determinations in this notice are the sole responsibility of the museum, institution, or Federal agency that has control of the Native American cultural items. The National Park Service is not responsible for the determinations in this notice.

    History and Description of the Cultural Items

    In 1951, 88 cultural items were removed from the archeological site 45-SP-5 in Spokane County, WA, by Louis R. Caywood with the National Park Service and under contract with State Parks. During the archeological excavation of the site, the burial location of Jacques Raphael Finlay (1768-1828, of Saulteaux-Cree (Chippewa)/Eastern Woodland (Ojibwe) and Scottish descent) was discovered and removed along with 88 documented funerary objects. In 1976, the Finlay/Finley family, spanning (at minimum) a tristate region, requested and received permission for the reburial of Mr. Finlay's remains. A detailed inventory of the collection in 2005 revealed the funerary objects had not been reburied with Mr. Finlay's remains. In 1951 at the time of excavation, a Memorandum of Agreement between the Eastern Washington State Historical Society (EWSHS, also now known as the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture) and State Parks released custody and control of all excavated material to EWSHS. In 1976, the EWSHS deaccessioned Mr. Finlay's remains and released them to Mr. Elwood Ball of Ball and Dodd Funeral Home for reburial. In 1989, the EWSHS deaccessioned the balance of the 1951 excavated material in a transfer to State Parks. The funerary objects listed below were identified in the collection by staff at the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture (Burke Museum) in 2005. The objects were subsequently transferred to State Parks headquarters in Olympia, WA.

    The 88 unassociated funerary objects are 3 brass buttons, 2(+) fragments of cloth, 2 fragments of glass and 9 metal fragments believed to have once been a pair of spectacles, 1 bone comb fragment, 17 nails believed to have been from the burial vessel, 2 pipe bowl fragments, 5 pipe stem fragments, 1 glass bead fragment, 1 porcelain fragment, 20(+) wood fragments believed to be from the burial vessel, 1 charcoal fragment, 1 white clay fragment, 1 complete wood pipe and 20(+) particles of burned tobacco. One (1) “killed” knife with wood handle and 1 writing slate are missing from inventory. Efforts to track and recover these two items over the last four years have failed.

    The site is that of Spokane House, a fur trade fort, founded and built by Mr. Finlay (an on-again, off-again employee of the North West Company and a free/independent trader) and a colleague under the direction of David Thompson around 1809. The fort changed ownership to the Hudson's Bay Company, who, in 1825, moved their operation from Spokane House (Nisbet, 2003). Mr. Finlay first arrived in what would later become the Spokane, WA, area with a wife and children. Mr. Finlay's wife is believed to have been from a similar or close tribe to that of his mother's. At some point Mr. Finlay took one, possibly two more wives, both believed to have been Native American women, and went on to father more children. In total he appears to have had, at minimum, 15 children, although possibly as many as 19 children. He died in December of 1828, and his wife buried him at the site of Spokane House.

    State Parks staff has determined the 88 unassociated funerary objects are reasonably believed to have been placed with or near Mr. Finlay at the time of his death or later as part of the death rite or ceremony. The surviving Finlay family is large (some estimates put their size at over 11,000 living in the 1990s). State Parks performed a lineal descendant search that resulted in 35 descendants that contacted State Parks and 12 lineal descendants that placed formal claims. The claimants are as follows: Dumont, Harold Tommy; Dumont-Friday, Michelle; Dumont, Monte; Childress, JuLee Lain; Childress, Michael L.; Childress, minor child #1; Childress, minor child #2; Finley, Marian; Loper, Donald; Salois, Britton; Samsel, Joan; and Trahan, Albert. State Parks has also determined there is a relationship of shared group identity that can be reasonably traced between Mr. Finlay's funerary objects and modern-day tribes. Based on a preponderance of the following evidence the objects are culturally affiliated to the modern-day tribes of the Coeur d'Alene Tribe of the Coeur d'Alene Reservation, Idaho; Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Reservation, Montana; Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, Washington; Kalispel Tribe of the Kalispel Reservation, Washington; and Spokane Tribe of the Spokane Reservation, Washington. This determination is based on ethnographic evidence that the Upper and Middle Spokane people predominantly resided in the area and utilized the resources of the site both pre and post-contact. Included in this evidence are tribal members and tribal descents that share kinship connections; shared linguistic heritage, overlapping trade networks, battle alliances, shared resource protection, cooperative hunting parties, and shared burial practices (Fahey, 1986; Luttrell, 2011; Ruby and Brown, 1970 & 1981; Walker, 1998). Additionally, in consultation with the Spokane Tribe, representatives of the tribe stated the site is a part of their people's traditional territory.

    State Parks received a joint claim for repatriation for the funerary objects from the lineal descendant claimants listed above and the Coeur d'Alene Tribe of the Coeur d'Alene Reservation, Idaho; Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Reservation, Montana; Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, Washington; Kalispel Tribe of the Kalispel Reservation, Washington; and Spokane Tribe of the Spokane Reservation, Washington.

    Determinations Made by the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission

    Officials of the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission have determined that:

    • Pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(3)(B), the 88 unassociated funerary objects described above are reasonably believed to have been placed with or near individual human remains at the time of death or later as part of the death rite or ceremony and are believed, by a preponderance of the evidence, to have been removed from a specific burial site of a Native American individual.

    • Pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3005(a)(5)(A), Dumont, Harold Tommy; Dumont-Friday, Michelle; Dumont, Monte; Childress, JuLee Lain; Childress, Michael L.; Childress, minor child #1; Childress, minor child #2; Finley, Marian; Loper, Donald; Salois, Britton; Samsel, Joan; and Trahan, Albert are the direct lineal descendants of the individual who owned these funerary objects.

    • Pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(2), there is a relationship of shared group identity that can be reasonably traced between the unassociated funerary objects and the Coeur d'Alene Tribe of the Coeur d'Alene Reservation, Idaho; Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Reservation, Montana; Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, Washington; Kalispel Tribe of the Kalispel Reservation, Washington; and Spokane Tribe of the Spokane Reservation, Washington.

    Additional Requestors and Disposition

    Lineal descendants or representatives of any Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to claim these cultural items should submit a written request with information in support of the claim to Alicia Woods, Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission, P.O. Box 42650, Olympia, WA 98504-2650, telephone (360) 902-0939, email [email protected], by September 4, 2015. After that date, if no additional claimants have come forward, transfer of control of the unassociated funerary objects to the listed lineal descendants and the Coeur d'Alene Tribe of the Coeur d'Alene Reservation, Idaho; Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Reservation, Montana; Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, Washington; Kalispel Tribe of the Kalispel Reservation, Washington; and Spokane Tribe of the Spokane Reservation, Washington, may proceed.

    The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission is responsible for notifying the lineal descendants; Coeur d'Alene Tribe of the Coeur d'Alene Reservation, Idaho; Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Reservation, Montana; Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, Washington; Kalispel Tribe of the Kalispel Reservation, Washington; and Spokane Tribe of the Spokane Reservation, Washington, that this notice has been published.

    Dated: June 29, 2015. Melanie O'Brien, Manager, National NAGPRA Program.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19266 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4312-50-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR National Park Service [NPS-AKR-ANIA-CAKR-DENA-GAAR-KOVA-LACL-18851; PPAKAKROR4, PPMPRLE1Y.LS0000] Request for Nominations for the National Park Service Alaska Region Subsistence Resource Commission Program AGENCY:

    National Park Service, Interior.

    ACTION:

    Request for nominations.

    SUMMARY:

    The National Park Service (NPS) is seeking nominations for new members to represent subsistence users on the following Subsistence Resource Commissions (SRC): The Aniakchak National Monument SRC, the Cape Krusenstern National Monument SRC, the Denali National Park SRC, the Gates of the Arctic National Park SRC, the Kobuk Valley National Park SRC, and the Lake Clark National Park SRC.

    DATES:

    Nominations must be postmarked by September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Nominations should be sent to: Clarence Summers, Subsistence Manager, National Park Service, Alaska Regional Office, 240 W. 5th Avenue, Anchorage, AK 99501; or via email at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The NPS SRC program is authorized under section 808 of the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 3118). The SRCs hold meetings to develop NPS subsistence program recommendations and advise on related regulatory proposals and resource management issues.

    Each SRC is composed of nine members: (a) Three members appointed by the Secretary of the Interior; (b) three members appointed by the Governor of the State of Alaska; and (c) three members appointed by a Regional Advisory Council (RAC), established pursuant to 16 U.S.C. 3115, which has jurisdiction within the area in which the park is located. Each of the three members appointed by the RAC must be a member of either the RAC or a local advisory committee within the region who also engages in subsistence uses within the Park or Park Monument.

    We are now seeking nominations for those three members of each of the SRCs listed above. These members are to be appointed by the Secretary of the Interior.

    Members will be appointed for a term of three years. Members of the SRC receive no pay, allowances, or benefits by reason of their service on the SRC. However, while away from their homes or regular places of business in the performance of services for the SRC, and as approved by the Designated Federal Officer (DFO), members may be allowed travel expenses, including per diem in lieu of subsistence, in the same manner as persons employed intermittently in Government service are allowed such expenses under section 5703 of title 5 of the United States Code.

    SRC meetings will take place at such times as designated by the DFO. Members are expected to make every effort to attend all meetings. Members may not appoint deputies or alternates.

    Individuals who are federally registered lobbyists are ineligible to serve on all FACA and non-FACA boards, committees, or councils in an individual capacity. The term “individual capacity” refers to individuals who are appointed to exercise their own individual best judgment on behalf of the government, such as when they are designated Special Government Employees, rather than being appointed to represent a particular interest.

    Seeking Nominations for Members

    We are seeking nominations for members to represent subsistence users on each of the six SRCs listed above. All those interested in serving as members, including current members whose terms are expiring, must follow the same nomination process. Nominations should include a resume providing an adequate description of the nominee's qualifications, including information that would enable the Department of the Interior to make an informed decision regarding meeting the membership requirements of the SRC, and to permit the Department to contact a potential member.

    Dated: July 28, 2015. Alma Ripps, Chief, Office of Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19262 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310-EE-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR National Park Service [NPS-WASO-NAGPRA-18278; PPWOCRADN0-PCU00RP15.R50000] Notice of Inventory Completion: Museum of Anthropology at Washington State University, Pullman, WA AGENCY:

    National Park Service, Interior.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Museum of Anthropology at Washington State University has completed an inventory of human remains, in consultation with the appropriate Indian tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations, and has determined that there is a cultural affiliation between the human remains and present-day Indian tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations. Lineal descendants or representatives of any Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to request transfer of control of these human remains should submit a written request to the Museum of Anthropology at Washington State University. If no additional requestors come forward, transfer of control of the human remains to the lineal descendants, Indian tribes, or Native Hawaiian organizations stated in this notice may proceed.

    DATES:

    Lineal descendants or representatives of any Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to request transfer of control of these human remains should submit a written request with information in support of the request to the Museum of Anthropology at Washington State University at the address in this notice by September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Mary Collins, Director Emeritus, Museum of Anthropology Washington State University, Pullman, WA 99164-4910, telephone (509) 592-6929, email [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Notice is here given in accordance with the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), 25 U.S.C. 3003, of the completion of an inventory of human remains under the control of the Museum of Anthropology at Washington State University Pullman, WA. The human remains were removed from near the mouth of Crab Creek in Grant County, WA.

    This notice is published as part of the National Park Service's administrative responsibilities under NAGPRA, 25 U.S.C. 3003(d)(3). The determinations in this notice are the sole responsibility of the museum, institution, or Federal agency that has control of the Native American human remains. The National Park Service is not responsible for the determinations in this notice.

    Consultation

    A detailed assessment of the human remains was made by the Museum of Anthropology at Washington State University professional staff in consultation with representatives of the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation, Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, and the Wanapum Band, a non-federally recognized Indian group.

    History and Description of the Remains

    In 1957, human remains representing, at minimum, one individual were removed from near the mouth of Crab Creek in Grant County, WA. No information about why or how the human remains were collected has been located. No known individuals were identified. No associated funerary objects are present. The human remains consist of a single lot of sand, ash, charcoal, and fragmentary human remains and are believed to be the remnants of a cremation feature. The human remains were found in a box labeled with the date and location from which the human remains were removed and the names of two students who are presumed to have done the removal. Attempts to locate and communicate with the students were not successful. Although not the most common form of burial, cremation was practiced by a number of Native American groups along the Columbia River from very ancient to relatively recent times.

    Determinations Made by the Museum of Anthropology at Washington State University

    Officials of the Museum of Anthropology at Washington State University have determined that:

    • Pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(9), the human remains described in this notice represent the physical remains of one individual of Native American ancestry.

    • Pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(2), there is a relationship of shared group identity that can be reasonably traced between the Native American human remains and the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation and the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation. Additionally, a cultural relationship is determined to exist between the human remains and the Wanapum Band, a non-federally recognized Indian group.

    Additional Requestors and Disposition

    Lineal descendants or representatives of any Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to request transfer of control of these human remains should submit a written request with information in support of the request to Mary Collins, Director Emeritus, Museum of Anthropology at Washington State University, Pullman, WA 99164-4910, telephone (509) 592-6929, email [email protected], by September 4, 2015. After that date, if no additional requestors have come forward, transfer of control of the human remains to the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation, the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, and, if joined to one or more of the culturally affiliated tribes, the Wanapum Band, a non-federally recognized Indian group, may proceed.

    The Museum of Anthropology at Washington State University is responsible for notifying the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation, Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, and the Wanapum Band, a non-federally recognized Indian group, that this notice has been published.

    Dated: May 11, 2015. Mariah Soriano, Acting Manager, National NAGPRA Program.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19271 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4312-50-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR National Park Service [NPS-WASO-NAGPRA-18596; PPWOCRADN0-PCU00RP14.R50000] Notice of Intent To Repatriate a Cultural Item: The University of Iowa Museum of Natural History, Iowa City, IA AGENCY:

    National Park Service, Interior.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The University of Iowa Museum of Natural History, in consultation with the appropriate Indian tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations, has determined that the cultural item listed in this notice meets the definition of an object of cultural patrimony. Lineal descendants or representatives of any Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to claim this cultural item should submit a written request to the University of Iowa Museum of Natural History. If no additional claimants come forward, transfer of control of the cultural item to the lineal descendants, Indian tribes, or Native Hawaiian organizations stated in this notice may proceed.

    DATES:

    Lineal descendants or representatives of any Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to claim this cultural item should submit a written request with information in support of the claim to the University of Iowa Museum of Natural History at the address in this notice by September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Dr. Trina Roberts, Museum of Natural History, 11 Macbride Hall, The University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52242, telephone (319) 335-1313, email [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Notice is here given in accordance with the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), 25 U.S.C. 3005, of the intent to repatriate a cultural item under the control of the University of Iowa Museum of Natural History, Iowa City, IA, that meets the definition of an object of cultural patrimony under 25 U.S.C. 3001.

    This notice is published as part of the National Park Service's administrative responsibilities under NAGPRA, 25 U.S.C. 3003(d)(3). The determinations in this notice are the sole responsibility of the museum, institution, or Federal agency that has control of the Native American cultural item. The National Park Service is not responsible for the determinations in this notice.

    History and Description of the Cultural Item

    In November 1983 Betty S. Webber and Catherine S. Chandler donated one bear claw necklace to the University of Iowa Museum of Natural History along with other cultural items owned by their father, Fred Armstrong Soleman, which were purchased or received as gifts during his career in Tama, IA. The bear claw necklace was accessioned by the University of Iowa Museum of Natural History as SUI 33914. The bear claw necklace was identified as an object of cultural patrimony by Jonathan Buffalo, Historical Preservation Director of the Sac & Fox Tribe of the Mississippi in Iowa, in a letter dated February 3, 2015.

    Consultation with the Sac & Fox Tribe of the Mississippi in Iowa confirmed both that this object fits the definition of an object of cultural patrimony under NAGPRA and that it was collected in or around the boundaries of the traditional property of the Sac & Fox Tribe of the Mississippi in Iowa.

    Determinations Made by the University of Iowa Museum of Natural History

    Officials of the University of Iowa Museum of Natural History have determined that:

    • Pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(3)(D), the one cultural item described above has ongoing historical, traditional, or cultural importance central to the Native American group or culture itself, rather than property owned by an individual.

    • Pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 3001(2), there is a relationship of shared group identity that can be reasonably traced between the bear claw necklace and the Sac & Fox Tribe of the Mississippi in Iowa.

    Additional Requestors and Disposition

    Lineal descendants or representatives of any Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization not identified in this notice that wish to claim these cultural items should submit a written request with information in support of the claim to Dr. Trina Roberts, Museum of Natural History, 11 Macbride Hall, The University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52242, telephone (319) 335-1313, email [email protected], by September 4, 2015. After that date, if no additional claimants have come forward, transfer of control of the object of cultural patrimony to the Sac & Fox Tribe of the Mississippi in Iowa may proceed.

    The University of Iowa Museum of Natural History is responsible for notifying the Sac & Fox Tribe of the Mississippi in Iowa that this notice has been published.

    Dated: June 29, 2015. Melanie O'Brien, Manager, National NAGPRA Program.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19264 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4312-50-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement [S1D1S SS08011000 SX066A000 67F 134S180110; S2D2S SS08011000 SX066A00 33F 13xs501520] Notice of Proposed Information Collection; Request for Comments for 1029-0027 AGENCY:

    Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, Interior.

    ACTION:

    Notice and request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    In compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSMRE) is announcing its intention to request approval to continue the collections of information regarding general requirements for surface coal mining and reclamation operations on Federal lands. This information collection activity was previously approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), and assigned clearance number 1029-0027.

    DATES:

    Comments on the proposed information collection must be received by October 5, 2015, to be assured of consideration.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments may be mailed to John Trelease, Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, 1951 Constitution Ave. NW., Room 203-SIB, Washington, DC 20240. Comments may also be submitted electronically to [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    To receive a copy of the information collection request, contact John Trelease at (202) 208-2783, or at the email address listed above.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    OMB regulations at 5 CFR part 1320, which implement provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-13), require that interested members of the public and affected agencies have an opportunity to comment on information collection and recordkeeping activities [see 5 CFR 1320.8 (d)]. This notice identifies an information collection that OSMRE will be submitting to OMB for approval. This collection is contained in 30 CFR part 740—General requirements for surface coal mining and reclamation operations on Federal lands (1029-0027). OSMRE will request a 3-year term of approval for this information collection activity. An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. Responses are required to obtain a benefit for this collection.

    Comments are invited on: (1) The need for the collection of information for the performance of the functions of the agency; (2) the accuracy of the agency's burden estimates; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility and clarity of the information collection; and (4) ways to minimize the information collection burden on respondents, such as use of automated means of collection of the information. A summary of the public comments will accompany OSMRE's submission of the information collection requests to OMB.

    Before including your address, phone number, email address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment—including your personal identifying information—may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

    This notice provides the public with 60 days in which to comment on the following information collection activity:

    Title: 30 CFR part 740—General requirements for surface coal mining and reclamation operations on Federal lands.

    OMB Control Number: 1029-0027.

    Summary: Section 523 of SMCRA requires that a Federal lands program be established to govern surface coal mining and reclamation operations on Federal lands. The information requested is needed to assist the regulatory authority determine the eligibility of an applicant to conduct surface coal mining operations on Federal lands.

    Frequency of Collection: Once.

    Description of Respondents: Applicants for surface coal mine permits on Federal lands, and State Regulatory Authorities.

    Total Annual Responses: 12.

    Total Annual Burden Hours for Applicants: 780.

    Total Annual Burden Hours for States: 1,425.

    Total Annual Burden for All Respondents: 2,205.

    Dated: July 31, 2015. John A. Trelease, Acting Chief, Division of Regulatory Support.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19191 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310-05-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement [S1D1S SS08011000 SX066A000 67F 134S180110; S2D2S SS08011000 SX066A00 33F 13xs501520] Notice of Proposed Information Collection; Request for Comments AGENCY:

    Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, Interior.

    ACTION:

    Notice and request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    In compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSMRE) is announcing its intention to request approval to continue the collection of information for our petition process for designation of Federal lands as unsuitable for all or certain types of surface coal mining operations and for termination of previous designations. This information collection activity was previously approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), and assigned clearance number 1029-0098.

    DATES:

    Comments on the proposed information collection activity must be received by October 5, 2015, to be assured of consideration.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments may be mailed to John Trelease, Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, 1951 Constitution Ave NW., Room 203—SIB, Washington, DC 20240. Comments may also be submitted electronically to [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    To receive a copy of the information collection request contact John Trelease at (202) 208-2783 or by email at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    OMB regulations at 5 CFR 1320, which implement provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-13), require that interested members of the public and affected agencies have an opportunity to comment on information collection and recordkeeping activities [see 5 CFR 1320.8(d)]. This notice identifies an information collection that OSMRE will be submitting to OMB for renewed approval. This collection is contained in 30 CFR part 769—Petition process for designation of Federal lands as unsuitable for all or certain types of surface coal mining operations and for termination of previous designations. OSMRE will request a 3-year term of approval for this information collection activity. An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. The OMB control number for part 769 is 1029-0098. Responses are required to obtain a benefit.

    Comments are invited on: (1) The need for the collection of information for the performance of the functions of the agency; (2) the accuracy of the agency's burden estimates; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility and clarity of the information collection; and (4) ways to minimize the information collection burden on respondents, such as use of automated means of collection of the information. A summary of the public comments will accompany OSMRE's submission of the information collection request to OMB.

    Before including your address, phone number, email address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment, including your personal identifying information, may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

    This notice provides the public with 60 days in which to comment on the following information collection activity:

    Title: 30 CFR part 769—Petition process for designation of Federal lands as unsuitable for all or certain types of surface coal mining operations and for termination of previous designations.

    OMB Control Number: 1029-0098.

    Summary: This Part establishes the minimum procedures and standards for designating Federal lands unsuitable for certain types of surface mining operations and for terminating designations pursuant to a petition. The information requested will aid the regulatory authority in the decision making process to approve or disapprove a request.

    Bureau Form Number: None.

    Frequency of Collection: Once.

    Description of Respondents: People who may be adversely affected by surface mining on Federal lands.

    Total Annual Responses: 1.

    Total Annual Burden Hours: 1,000 hours.

    Dated: July 31, 2015. John A. Trelease, Acting Chief, Division of Regulatory Support.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19195 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310-05-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement [S1D1S SS08011000 SX066A000 67F 134S180110; S2D2S SS08011000 SX066A00 33F 13xs501520] Notice of Proposed Information Collection; Request for Comments for 1029-0110 AGENCY:

    Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, Interior.

    ACTION:

    Notice and request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    In compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSMRE) is announcing its intention to request approval to continue the collection of information for two technical training program course effectiveness evaluation forms. This information collection activity was previously approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), and assigned clearance number 1029-0110.

    DATES:

    Comments on the proposed information collection activity must be received by October 5, 2015, to be assured of consideration.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments may be mailed to John Trelease, Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, 1951 Constitution Ave NW., Room 203—SIB, Washington, DC 20240. Comments may also be submitted electronically to [email protected].

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    To receive a copy of the information collection request contact John Trelease at (202) 208-2783, or by email at [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    OMB regulations at 5 CFR part 1320, which implement provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-13), require that interested members of the public and affected agencies have an opportunity to comment on information collection and recordkeeping activities [see 5 CFR 1320.8(d)]. This notice identifies an information collection that OSMRE will be submitting to OMB for renewed approval. This collection is for OSMRE's Technical Training Program Course Effectiveness Evaluations (1029-0110). OSMRE will request a 3-year term of approval for each information collection activity.

    Comments are invited on: (1) The need for the collection of information for the performance of the functions of the agency; (2) the accuracy of the agency's burden estimates; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility and clarity of the information collection; and (4) ways to minimize the information collection burden on respondents, such as use of automated means of collection of the information. A summary of the public comments will accompany OSMRE's submission of the information collection request to OMB.

    Before including your address, phone number, email address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment, including your personal identifying information, may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

    This notice provides the public with 60 days in which to comment on the following information collection activity:

    Title: Technical Training Program Course Effectiveness Evaluation.

    OMB Control Number: 1029-0110.

    Summary: Executive Order 12862 requires agencies to survey customers to determine the kind and quality of services they want and their level of satisfaction with existing services. The information supplied by this evaluation will determine customer satisfaction with OSMRE's training program and identify needs of respondents.

    Bureau Form Number: None.

    Frequency of Collection: Once.

    Description of Respondents: State regulatory authority and Tribal employees and their supervisors.

    Total Annual Responses: 425.

    Total Annual Burden Hours: 71 hours.

    Dated: July 31, 2015. John A. Trelease, Acting Chief, Division of Regulatory Support.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19194 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310-05-P
    INTERNATIONAL TRADE COMMISSION [USITC SE-15-023] Government in the Sunshine Act Meeting Notice AGENCY HOLDING THE MEETING:

    United States International Trade Commission

    TIME AND DATE:

    August 7, 2015 at 11:00 a.m.

    PLACE:

    Room 101, 500 E Street SW., Washington, DC 20436, Telephone: (202) 205-2000.

    STATUS:

    Open to the public.

    MATTERS TO BE CONSIDERED:

    1. Agendas for future meetings: none. 2. Minutes 3. Ratification List 4. Vote in Inv. No. 731-TA-1279 (Preliminary) (Hydrofluorocarbon Blends and Components From China). The Commission is currently scheduled to complete and file its determination on August 10, 2015; views of the Commission are currently scheduled to be completed and filed on August 17, 2015. 5. Vote in Inv. No. 731-TA-1092 (Review) (Diamond Sawblades and Parts Thereof From China). The Commission is currently scheduled to complete and file its determination and views of the Commission on September 2, 2015. 6. Outstanding action jackets: none

    In accordance with Commission policy, subject matter listed above, not disposed of at the scheduled meeting, may be carried over to the agenda of the following meeting.

    By order of the Commission.

    Issued: July 31, 2015. Lisa R. Barton, Secretary to the Commission.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19282 Filed 8-3-15; 11:15 am] BILLING CODE 7020-02-P
    INTERNATIONAL TRADE COMMISSION [Investigation No. 731-TA-1059 (Second Review)] Hand Trucks and Certain Parts Thereof From China Determination

    On the basis of the record 1 developed in the subject five-year review, the United States International Trade Commission (“Commission”) determines, pursuant to the Tariff Act of 1930, that revocation of the antidumping duty order on hand trucks and certain parts thereof from China would be likely to lead to continuation or recurrence of material injury to an industry in the United States within a reasonably foreseeable time.

    1 The record is defined in section 207.2(f) of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (19 CFR 207.2(f)).

    Background

    The Commission, pursuant to section 751(c) of the Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S.C. 1675(c)), instituted this review on March 2, 2015 (80 FR 11226) and determined on June 5, 2015 that it would conduct an expedited review (80 FR 37661, July 1, 2015).

    The Commission completed and filed its determination in this review on July 30, 2015. The views of the Commission are contained in USITC Publication 4546 (July 2015), entitled Hand Trucks and Certain Parts Thereof from China: Investigation No. 731-TA-1059 (Second Review).

    By order of the Commission.

    Issued: July 30, 2015. Lisa R. Barton, Secretary to the Commission.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19080 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7020-02-P
    DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE Drug Enforcement Administration [Docket No. DEA-392] Manufacturer of Controlled Substances Registration: Patheon Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ACTION:

    Notice of registration.

    SUMMARY:

    Patheon Pharmaceuticals, Inc. applied to be registered as a manufacturer of a certain basic class of controlled substance. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) grants Patheon Pharmaceuticals, Inc. registration as a manufacturer of this controlled substance.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    By notice dated March 9, 2015, and published in the Federal Register on March 24, 2015, 80 FR 15632, Patheon Pharmaceuticals, Inc., 2110 E. Galbraith Road, Cincinnati, Ohio 45237 applied to be registered as a manufacturer of a certain basic class of controlled substance. No comments or objections were submitted for this notice.

    The DEA has considered the factors in 21 U.S.C. 823(a) and determined that the registration of Patheon Pharmaceuticals, Inc. to manufacture the basic class of controlled substance is consistent with the public interest and with United States obligations under international treaties, conventions, or protocols in effect on May 1, 1971. The DEA investigated the company's maintenance of effective controls against diversion by inspecting and testing the company's physical security systems, verifying the company's compliance with state and local laws, and reviewing the company's background and history.

    Therefore, pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 823(a), and in accordance with 21 CFR 1301.33, the above-named company is granted registration as a bulk manufacturer of gamma hydroxybutyric acid (2010), a basic class of controlled substance listed in schedule I.

    The company plans to manufacturer the listed controlled substance for distribution to its customers.

    Dated: July 29, 2015. Joseph T. Rannazzisi, Deputy Assistant Administrator.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19173 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
    DEPARTMENT OF LABOR Office of the Secretary Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Application for a Farm Labor Contractor or Farm Labor Contractor Employee Certificate of Registration ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Labor (DOL) is submitting the Wage and Hour Division (WHD) sponsored information collection request (ICR) revision titled, “Application for a Farm Labor Contractor or Farm Labor Contractor Employee Certificate of Registration,” to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and approval for use in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.). Public comments on the ICR are invited.

    DATES:

    The OMB will consider all written comments that agency receives on or before September 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    A copy of this ICR with applicable supporting documentation; including a description of the likely respondents, proposed frequency of response, and estimated total burden may be obtained free of charge from the RegInfo.gov Web site at http://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/PRAViewICR?ref_nbr=201505-1235-001 (this link will only become active on the day following publication of this notice) or by contacting Michel Smyth by telephone at 202-693-4129, TTY 202-693-8064, (these are not toll-free numbers) or sending an email to [email protected]

    Submit comments about this request by mail or courier to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Attn: OMB Desk Officer for DOL-WHD, Office of Management and Budget, Room 10235, 725 17th Street, NW., Washington, DC 20503; by Fax: 202-395-5806 (this is not a toll-free number); or by email: [email protected] Commenters are encouraged, but not required, to send a courtesy copy of any comments by mail or courier to the U.S. Department of Labor-OASAM, Office of the Chief Information Officer, Attn: Departmental Information Compliance Management Program, Room N1301, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210; or by email: [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Contact Michel Smyth by telephone at 202-693-4129, TTY 202-693-8064, (these are not toll-free numbers) or sending an email to [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This ICR seeks approval under the PRA for revisions to the Application for a Farm Labor Contractor or Farm Labor Contractor Employee Certificate of Registration information collection. Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act (MSPA) section 101 provides that no individual may perform farm labor contracting activities without a certificate of registration. See 29 U.S.C. 1811. Form WH-530 is the application form that provides the DOL with the information necessary to issue certificates specifying the farm labor contracting activities authorized. In addition, certain vehicle and safety standards are required of a farm labor contractor applicant and such data is collected via forms WH-514, WH-514a, and WH-515. This information collection has been classified as a revision, because DOL proposes to implement minor changes to Forms WH-514, WH-514a, WH-515 and WH-530. Most of the alterations are to make the forms clearer for the regulated community and to highlight certain instructions. MSPA sections 102, 105, and 511 authorize this information collection. See 29 U.S.C. 1812, 1815, and 1861.

    This information collection is subject to the PRA. A Federal agency generally cannot conduct or sponsor a collection of information, and the public is generally not required to respond to an information collection, unless it is approved by the OMB under the PRA and displays a currently valid OMB Control Number. In addition, notwithstanding any other provisions of law, no person shall generally be subject to penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information that does not display a valid Control Number. See 5 CFR 1320.5(a) and 1320.6. The DOL obtains OMB approval for this information collection under Control Number 1235-0016. The current approval is scheduled to expire on August 31, 2015; however, the DOL notes that existing information collection requirements submitted to the OMB receive a month-to-month extension while they undergo review. New requirements would only take effect upon OMB approval. For additional substantive information about this ICR, see the related notice published in the Federal Register on March 25, 2015 (80 FR 15822).

    Interested parties are encouraged to send comments to the OMB, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs at the address shown in the ADDRESSES section within thirty (30) days of publication of this notice in the Federal Register. In order to help ensure appropriate consideration, comments should mention OMB Control Number 1235-0016. The OMB is particularly interested in comments that:

    • Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility;

    • Evaluate the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;

    • Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and

    • Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses.

    Agency: DOL-WHD.

    Title of Collection: Application for a Farm Labor Contractor or Farm Labor Contractor Employee Certificate of Registration.

    OMB Control Number: 1235-0016.

    Affected Public: Private Sector—businesses or other for-profits, farms, and not-for- profit institutions.

    Total Estimated Number of Respondents: 15,026.

    Total Estimated Number of Responses: 23,196.

    Total Estimated Annual Time Burden: 9,334 hours.

    Total Estimated Annual Other Costs Burden: $447,354.

    Authority:

    44 U.S.C. 3507(a)(1)(D).

    Dated: July 30, 2015. Michel Smyth, Departmental Clearance Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19170 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4510-27-P
    DEPARTMENT OF LABOR Office of the Secretary ZRIN-1290-ZA02 Guidance for Executive Order 13673, “Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces” AGENCY:

    Department of Labor.

    ACTION:

    Proposed guidance; extension of comment period.

    SUMMARY:

    On May 28, 2015, the Department of Labor (DOL) published proposed guidance to assist federal agencies and the contracting community in implementing Executive Order 13673, “Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces,” which is designed to improve contractor compliance with labor laws and increase efficiency and cost savings in Federal contracting. On July 14, 2015, DOL published an extension of the comment period by 15 days from July 27, 2015, to August 11, 2015. The deadline for submitting comments is being further extended by an additional 15 days from August 11, 2015, to August 26, 2015, to provide additional time for interested parties to provide comments on the DOL guidance. The Department of Defense (DOD), General Services Administration (GSA), and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), which on May 28, 2015, jointly published a proposed rule implementing Executive Order 13673, and on July 14, 2015, extended the comment period for their proposed rule by 15 days to August 11, 2015, are similarly extending the comment period for their proposed rule by an additional 15 days to August 26, 2015.

    If you have already commented on the proposed guidance you do not need to resubmit your comment. Should you choose to do so, you can submit additional or supplemental comments. DOL will consider all comments received from the date of publication of the proposed guidance through the close of the extended comment period.

    DATES:

    The comment period for the Proposed Guidance published on May 28, 2015, scheduled to close on August 11, 2015, is extended until August 26, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, identified by ZRIN-1290-ZA02, by either of the following methods:

    Electronic comments: Comments may be sent via http://www.regulations.gov, a Federal E-Government Web site that allows the public to find, review, and submit comments on documents that agencies have published in the Federal Register and that are open for comment. Simply type in “guidance on fair pay and safe workplaces” (in quotes) in the Comment or Submission search box, click Go, and follow the instructions for submitting comments.

    Mail: Address written submissions to Tiffany Jones, U.S. Department of Labor, Room S-2312, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210.

    Instructions: Please submit only one copy of your comments by only one method. All submissions must include the agency name and ZRIN, identified above, for this document. Please be advised that comments received will become a matter of public record and will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided. Comments that are mailed must be received by the date indicated for consideration.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Kathleen E. Franks, Director, Office of Regulatory and Programmatic Policy, U.S. Department of Labor, Room S-2312, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone: (202) 693-5959. Copies of the proposed guidance may be obtained in alternative formats (large print, Braille, audio tape or disc), upon request, by calling (202) 693-5959. TTY/TDD callers may dial toll-free [1-877-889-5627] to obtain information or request materials in alternative formats.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On May 28, 2015, DOL published proposed guidance in the Federal Register at 80 FR 30573. DOL was originally to receive comments on this guidance on or before July 27, 2015. On July 14, 2015, DOL published an extension of the comment period by 15 days from July 27, 2015, to August 11, 2015.

    DOL has determined that it is appropriate to provide an additional 15-day period for comment on the guidance, after considering requests to extend the comment period further.

    To allow the public sufficient time to review and comment on the proposed guidance, DOL is extending the comment period until August 26, 2015.

    Signed in Washington, DC, this 30th day of July 2015. Mary Beth Maxwell, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Policy, U.S. Department of Labor.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19171 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4510-HX-P
    NATIONAL ARCHIVES AND RECORDS ADMINISTRATION [NARA-2015-056] Records Schedules; Availability and Request for Comments AGENCY:

    National Archives and Records Administration (NARA).

    ACTION:

    Notice of availability of proposed records schedules; request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) publishes notice at least once monthly of certain Federal agency requests for records disposition authority (records schedules). Once approved by NARA, records schedules provide mandatory instructions on what happens to records when no longer needed for current Government business. They authorize agencies to preserve records of continuing value in the National Archives of the United States and to destroy, after a specified period, records lacking administrative, legal, research, or other value. NARA publishes notice for records schedules in which agencies propose to destroy records not previously authorized for disposal or reduce the retention period of records already authorized for disposal. NARA invites public comments on such records schedules, as required by 44 U.S.C. 3303a(a).

    DATES:

    NARA must receive requests for copies in writing by September 4, 2015. Once NARA completes appraisal of the records, we will send you a copy of the schedule you requested. We usually prepare appraisal memoranda that contain additional information concerning the records covered by a proposed schedule. You may also request these. If you do, we will also provide them once we have completed the appraisal. You have 30 days after we send these requested documents in which to submit comments.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may request a copy of any records schedule identified in this notice by contacting Records Management Services (ACNR) using one of the following means:

    Mail: NARA (ACNR); 8601 Adelphi Road, College Park, MD 20740-6001.

    Email: [email protected]

    FAX: 301-837-3698.

    You must cite the control number, which appears in parentheses after the name of the agency which submitted the schedule, and a mailing address. If you would like an appraisal report, please include that in your request.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Margaret Hawkins, Director, by mail at Records Management Services (ACNR); National Archives and Records Administration; 8601 Adelphi Road; College Park, MD 20740-6001, by phone at 301-837-1799, or by email at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Each year, Federal agencies create billions of records on paper, film, magnetic tape, and other media. To control this accumulation, agency records managers prepare schedules proposing retention periods for records and submit these schedules for NARA's approval. These schedules provide for timely transfer into the National Archives of historically valuable records and authorize the disposal of all other records after the agency no longer needs them to conduct its business. Some schedules are comprehensive and cover all the records of an agency or one of its major subdivisions. Most schedules, however, cover records of only one office or program or a few series of records. Many of these update previously approved schedules, and some include records proposed as permanent.

    The schedules listed in this notice are media neutral unless otherwise specified. An item in a schedule is media neutral when an agency may apply the disposition instructions to records regardless of the medium in which it has created or maintains the records. Items included in schedules submitted to NARA on or after December 17, 2007, are media neutral unless the item is limited to a specific medium. (See 36 CFR 1225.12(e).)

    No agencies may destroy Federal records without the approval of the Archivist of the United States. The Archivist grants this approval only after a thorough consideration of the records' administrative use by the agency of origin, the rights of the Government and of private people directly affected by the Government's activities, and whether or not the records have historical or other value.

    In addition to identifying the Federal agencies and any subdivisions requesting disposition authority, this notice lists the organizational unit(s) accumulating the records or that the schedule has agency-wide applicability (in the case of schedules that cover records that may be accumulated throughout an agency), provides the control number assigned to each schedule, the total number of schedule items, and the number of temporary items (the records proposed for destruction), and includes a brief description of the temporary records. The records schedule itself contains a full description of the records at the file unit level as well as their disposition. If NARA staff has prepared an appraisal memorandum for the schedule, it too includes information about the records. You may request additional information about the disposition process at the addresses above.

    Schedules Pending

    1. Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (DAA-0370-2015-0002, 3 items, 3 temporary items). Aeronautical survey files, including aeronautical field notes, observations, triangulation diagrams, and aerial photographs annotated with geodetic control data.

    2. Department of Defense, Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DAA-0374-2014-0025, 1 item, 1 temporary item). Records relating to agency observations of weather conditions.

    3. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Secretary (DAA-0468-2015-0002, 3 items, 3 temporary items). Master files of an electronic information system used to track and store records of healthcare discrimination complaints, investigations, correspondence, outreach, and working files.

    4. Department of Homeland Security, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (DAA-0566-2015-0004, 8 items, 8 temporary items). Applications and supporting documents used to replace permanent resident cards.

    5. Department of Homeland Security, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (DAA-0566-2015-0005, 1 item, 1 temporary item). Roster of candidates for naturalization provided to the court that will administer the oath of allegiance.

    6. Department of Homeland Security, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (DAA-0566-2015-0006, 1 item, 1 temporary item). Records of non-immigrants passing through the United States before 2002.

    7. Department of Homeland Security, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (DAA-0566-2015-0007, 1 item, 1 temporary item). Records of non-immigrants deported before 2002 that were not integrated into the records of an immigrant.

    8. Department of Homeland Security, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (DAA-0566-2015-0008, 1 item, 1 temporary item). Records of non-immigrants visiting the United States before 2002 that were not integrated into the records of an immigrant.

    9. Department of Justice, United States Marshals Service (DAA-0527-2013-0027, 3 items, 2 temporary items). Records include speeches and testimony by agency personnel. Proposed for permanent retention are speeches and testimony of high-level agency officials.

    10. Department of Justice, United States Marshals Service (DAA-0527-2013-0028, 3 items, 2 temporary items). Office of Internal Affairs records to include routine employee misconduct case files and general correspondence. Proposed for permanent retention are significant cases of employee misconduct.

    11. Department of the Navy, United States Marine Corps (DAA-0127-2014-0001, 1 item, 1 temporary item). Master files of an electronic information system used for the collection, analysis, and dissemination of intelligence information.

    12. Department of State, Bureau of Energy Resources (DAA-0059-2015-0003, 2 items, 2 temporary items). Records of the Office of Energy Programs including routine program and subject files.

    13. Department of State, Bureau of International Organization Affairs (DAA-0059-2014-0017, 4 items, 3 temporary items). Records of the Office of International Conferences including routine administrative and operational files. Proposed for permanent retention are conference files including delegation lists, agendas, and staff studies and reports.

    14. Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service (DAA-0058-2015-0001, 3 items, 2 temporary items). Email records of non-senior agency employees. Proposed for permanent retention are email records of senior-level agency officials.

    15. Denali Commission, Agency-wide (DAA-0591-2013-0001, 8 items, 1 temporary item). Master files of electronic information systems used to track grant projects. Proposed for permanent retention are policy, meeting, and correspondence files; publications and public relations files; Memorandum of Understanding/Agreement files, and historical grant case files.

    16. National Archives and Records Administration, Office of the Federal Register (DAA-0064-2015-0002, 1 item, 1 temporary item). Electronic submissions of notices for publication in the Federal Register.

    17. National Mediation Board, Agency-wide (DAA-0013-2015-0001, 1 item, 1 temporary item). Rail and air carrier labor contracts.

    18. Office of the Director of National Intelligence, Mission Support Division (N1-576-12-1, 16 items, 14 temporary items). Records include preliminary drafts and non-substantive working papers, insider threat case files, and records related to administrative functions and activities. Proposed for permanent retention are annual agency reports and substantive working papers and drafts.

    Dated: July 28, 2015. Paul M. Wester, Jr., Chief Records Officer for the U.S. Government.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19249 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7515-01-P
    OFFICE OF PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT Excepted Service AGENCY:

    U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    This notice identifies Schedule A, B, and C appointing authorities applicable to a single agency that were established or revoked from May 1, 2015, to May 31, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Senior Executive Resources Services, Senior Executive Services and Performance Management, Employee Services, (202) 606-2246.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    In accordance with 5 CFR 213.103, Schedule A, B, and C appointing authorities available for use by all agencies are codified in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). Schedule A, B, and C appointing authorities applicable to a single agency are not codified in the CFR, but the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) publishes a notice of agency-specific authorities established or revoked each month in the Federal Register at www.thefederalregister.org/fdsys/. OPM also publishes an annual notice of the consolidated listing of all Schedule A, B, and C appointing authorities, current as of June 30, in the Federal Register.

    Schedule A

    No Schedule A Authorities to report during May 2015.

    Schedule B

    No Schedule B Authorities to report during May 2015.

    Schedule C

    The following Schedule C appointing authorities were approved during May 2015.

    Agency name Organization name Position title Authorization No. Effective date Department of Agriculture Office of the Assistant Secretary for Congressional Relations Senior Legislative Analyst
  • Legislative Analyst
  • DA150131
  • DA150141
  • 5/1/2015
  • 5/14/2015
  • Foreign Agricultural Service Special Assistant
  • Policy Advisor
  • DA150133
  • DA150144
  • 5/1/2015
  • 5/14/2015
  • Office of the Secretary White House Liaison DA150134 5/1/2015 Office of Under Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment Chief of Staff
  • Senior Advisor
  • DA150145
  • DA150142
  • 5/14/2015
  • 5/14/2015
  • Natural Resources Conservation Service Special Assistant for Public and Private Partnerships DA150142 5/15/2015 Department of Commerce Office of Director General of the United States and Foreign Commercial Service and Assistant Secretary for Global Markets Special Advisor DC150102 5/12/2015 Office of the Under Secretary Special Advisor
  • Special Assistant
  • DC150095
  • DC150107
  • 5/14/2015
  • 5/15/2015
  • Office of the Deputy Secretary Special Assistant DC150104 5/14/2015 Office of White House Liaison Deputy Director, Office of White House Liaison DC150098 5/21/2015 Office of the Chief of Staff Confidential Assistant
  • Deputy Director of Advance and Special Assistant
  • DC150105
  • DC150106
  • 5/21/2015
  • 5/21/2015
  • Office of Scheduling and Advance Advance Specialist DC150110 5/21/2015 Department of Defense Office of the Under Secretary of Defense (Comptroller) Personal and Confidential Assistant (Comptroller) DD150123 5/11/2015 Office of Principal Deputy Under Secretary for Policy Special Assistant for Strategy, Plans and Forces DD150134 5/14/2015 Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (International Security Affairs) Special Assistant for Middle East DD150126
  • DD150128
  • 5/20/2015
  • 5/20/2015
  • Department of the Air Force Office of Assistant Secretary Air Force, Installations, Environment, and Logistics Special Assistant for Installations, Environment, and Energy DF150049 5/14/2015 Department of Education Office of the General Counsel Chief of Staff
  • Senior Counsel
  • DB150076
  • DB150080
  • 5/1/2015
  • 5/15/2015
  • Office of the Under Secretary Deputy Director, White House Initiative on Asian American Pacific Islanders DB150078 5/1/2015 Office of Legislation and Congressional Affairs Special Assistant DB150079 5/1/2015 Office of the Secretary Senior Advisor
  • Director of Strategic Partnerships, Special Advisor
  • DB150082
  • DB150083
  • 5/14/2015
  • 5/20/2015
  • Office for Civil Rights Senior Counsel DB150086 5/28/2015 Office of Communications and Outreach Strategic Advisor, Communications DB150087 5/29/2015 Office of the Deputy Secretary Director for Strategic Communications and Scheduling DB150088 5/29/2015 Department of Energy Office of the Chief Information Officer Special Assistant DE150084 5/15/2015 Office of Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy Chief of Staff DE150087 5/15/2015 Office of the Secretary Special Advisor DE150079 5/21/2015 Environmental Protection Agency Office of Public Affairs Press Secretary EP150036 5/20/2015 Export-Import Bank Office of the Chairman Deputy Chief of Staff EB150003 5/5/2015 Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Office of the Chairman Confidential Assistant DR150015 5/18/2015 General Services Administration Office of the Administrator Senior Advisor
  • Deputy Chief of Staff
  • GS150032
  • GS150033
  • 5/6/2015
  • 5/14/2015
  • Office of Communications and Marketing Press Secretary GS150034 5/22/2015 Government Printing Office Office of the Public Printer Executive Assistant GP150001 5/19/2015 Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs Deputy Director of Speechwriting
  • Confidential Assistant
  • DH150131
  • DH150140
  • 5/7/2015
  • 5/14/2015
  • Office of the Secretary Policy Advisor DH150141 5/29/2015 Office of the Assistant Secretary for Children and Families Senior Policy Advisor DH150149 5/29/2015 Office of the Deputy Secretary Confidential Assistant DH150150 5/29/2015 Department of Homeland Security Office of the Chief of Staff Special Assistant DM150158 5/13/2015 Office of the Under Secretary for National Protection and Programs Directorate Confidential Assistant DM150162 5/15/2015 Office of Privacy Officer Special Assistant DM150170 5/28/2015 Office of the Executive Secretariat Director of Trips and Advance DM150171 5/28/2015 Office of the Assistant Secretary for Policy Senior Advisor for Cyber Policy DM150172 5/28/2015 Office of the General Counsel Confidential Assistant DM150173 5/28/2015 Department of the Interior Secretary's Immediate Office Deputy Communications Director
  • Senior Advisor and Press Secretary
  • DI150086
  • DI150092
  • 5/29/2015
  • 5/29/2015
  • Advance Representative DI150093 5/29/2015 Department of Justice Office of Legislative Affairs Attorney Advisor DJ150080 5/26/2015 Office of Justice Programs Senior Counsel DJ150084 5/28/2015 Department of Labor Office of Public Affairs Press Secretary DL150057 5/1/2015 Office of the Deputy Secretary Senior Policy Advisor DL150059 5/13/2015 Office of the Secretary Special Assistant DL150060 5/18/2015 Wage and Hour Division Special Assistant DL150061 5/21/2015 National Aeronautics and Space Administration Office of Communications Deputy Press Secretary and Strategic Communications Coordinator NN150058 5/20/2015 Social Media Specialist NN150059 5/20/2015 National Transportation Safety Board Office of Board Members Special Assistant TB150004 5/1/2015 Office of Management and Budget Office of the General Counsel Confidential Assistant BO150027 5/5/2015 Office of the Director Assistant to the Deputy Director for Management BO150028 5/5/2015 Assistant for Management BO150031 5/20/2015 Assistant to the Deputy Director for Management BO150030 5/20/2015 Office of Legislative Affairs Confidential Assistant BO150029 5/20/2015 Small Business Administration Office of Congressional and Legislative Affairs Deputy Assistant Administrator for Congressional and Legislative Affairs SB150031 5/1/2015 Office of the Administrator Special Advisor SB150029 5/5/2015 Office of Communications and Public Liaison Associate Administrator for Communications and Public Liaison SB150033 5/14/2015 Office of Entrepreneurial Development Senior Advisor SB150030 5/29/2015 Department of State Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation Staff Assistant DS150082 5/14/2015 Office of the Secretary Staff Assistant DS150075 5/20/2015 Bureau of Legislative Affairs Deputy Assistant Secretary DS150081 5/20/2015 Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor Deputy Assistant Secretary DS150078 5/26/2015 Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs Deputy Assistant Secretary DS150084 5/21/2015 Department of Transportation Office of Assistant Secretary for Transportation Policy Policy Advisor DT150060 5/20/2015 Office of Public Affairs Director of Public Affairs DT150062 5/20/2015 Office of the Secretary Director of Advance DT150065 5/28/2015 Office of Communications and Legislative Affairs Director of Communications DT150067 5/29/2015 Department of Veterans Affairs Office of the Assistant Secretary for Public and Intergovernmental Affairs Special Assistant DV150037 5/26/2015

    The following Schedule C appointing authorities were revoked during May 2015.

    Agency name Organization name Position title Authorization No. Vacate date Department of Commerce Office of Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs Confidential Assistant DC140006 5/2/15 Office of the Under Secretary Special Assistant DC140049 5/16/15 International Trade Administration Confidential Assistant DC140125 5/16/15 Office of the Deputy Secretary Special Assistant DC130094 5/23/15 Office of the Chief Economist Special Project Advisor DC140076 5/29/15 Office of the Secretary of Defense Office of the Secretary Advance Officer DD150021 5/10/15 Farm Credit Administration Office of the Board Executive Assistant to Chairman of the Board FL130005 5/1/15 General Services Administration Mid-Atlantic Region Special Assistant to the Regional Administrator GS140005 5/8/15 Pacific Rim Region Special Assistant to the Regional Administrator GS140009 5/13/15 Office of Communications and Marketing Press Secretary GS140023 5/15/15 Office of the Administrator White House Liaison
  • Senior Advisor
  • GS130011
  • GS130012
  • 5/16/15
  • 5/16/15
  • Department of Health and Human Services Office of Health Reform Senior Policy Analyst DH140065 5/2/15 Department of Housing and Urban Development Office of the Secretary
  • Mid-Atlantic (Philadelphia)
  • Senior Policy Advisor
  • Regional Administrator
  • DU140052
  • DU110001
  • 5/2/15
  • 5/16/15
  • Rocky Mountain (Denver) Regional Administrator DU100050 5/30/15 Office of Field Policy and Management Regional Administrator (Northwest/Alaska) DU140002 5/30/15 Great Plains (Kansas City) Regional Administrator (Great Plains) DU140006 5/30/15 Department of the Interior Secretary's Immediate Office Special Assistant for Scheduling DI120064 5/1/15 Deputy Director of Advance DI140026 5/2/15 Director of Digital Strategy DI140066 5/15/15 Department of Justice Office of Legislative Affairs Attorney Advisor DJ130073 5/2/15 Department of Labor Office of the Secretary Special Assistant to the Secretary
  • Special Assistant
  • DL130043
  • DL100020
  • 5/2/15
  • 5/9/15
  • Wage and Hour Division Policy Advisor DL140007 5/2/15 Small Business Administration Office of Investment Special Advisor SB130025 5/2/15 Department of State Office of the Deputy Secretary for Management and Resources Senior Advisor DS110135 5/2/15 Office of the Under Secretary for Management Staff Assistant DS130124 5/2/15 Department of Transportation Office of the Secretary White House Liaison
  • Deputy White House Liaison
  • DT130041
  • DT140050
  • 5/2/15
  • 5/2/15
  • Authority:

    5 U.S.C. 3301 and 3302; E.O. 10577, 3 CFR, 1954-1958 Comp., p. 218.

    U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

    Beth F. Cobert, Acting Director.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19215 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6325-39-P
    POSTAL REGULATORY COMMISSION [Docket No. CP2015-115; Order No. 2627] New Postal Product AGENCY:

    Postal Regulatory Commission.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Commission is noticing a recent Postal Service filing concerning an additional Global Expedited Package Services 3 negotiated service agreement. This notice informs the public of the filing, invites public comment, and takes other administrative steps.

    DATES:

    Comments are due: August 6, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit comments electronically via the Commission's Filing Online system at http://www.prc.gov. Those who cannot submit comments electronically should contact the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section by telephone for advice on filing alternatives.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    David A. Trissell, General Counsel, at 202-789-6820.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Table of Contents I. Introduction II. Notice of Commission Action III. Ordering Paragraphs I. Introduction

    On July 29, 2015, the Postal Service filed notice that it has entered into an additional Global Expedited Package Services 3 (GEPS 3) negotiated service agreement (Agreement).1

    1 Notice of United States Postal Service of Filing a Functionally Equivalent Global Expedited Package Services 3 Negotiated Service Agreement and Application for Non-Public Treatment of Materials Filed Under Seal, July 29, 2015 (Notice).

    To support its Notice, the Postal Service filed a copy of the Agreement, a copy of the Governors' Decision authorizing the product, a certification of compliance with 39 U.S.C. 3633(a), and an application for non-public treatment of certain materials. It also filed supporting financial workpapers.

    II. Notice of Commission Action

    The Commission establishes Docket No. CP2015-115 for consideration of matters raised by the Notice.

    The Commission invites comments on whether the Postal Service's filing is consistent with 39 U.S.C. 3632, 3633, or 3642, 39 CFR part 3015, and 39 CFR part 3020, subpart B. Comments are due no later than August 6, 2015. The public portions of the filing can be accessed via the Commission's Web site (http://www.prc.gov).

    The Commission appoints John P. Klingenberg to serve as an officer of the Commission to represent the interests of the general public in this proceeding (Public Representative).

    III. Ordering Paragraphs

    It is ordered:

    1. The Commission establishes Docket No. CP2015-115 for consideration of the matters raised by the Postal Service's Notice.

    2. Pursuant to 39 U.S.C. 505, John P. Klingenberg is appointed as the Public Representative in this proceeding.

    3. Comments are due no later than August 6, 2015.

    4. The Secretary shall arrange for publication of this order in the Federal Register.

    By the Commission.

    Shoshana M. Grove, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19117 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7710-FW-P
    SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION [Release No. 34-75558; File No. SR-Phlx-2015-67] Self-Regulatory Organizations; NASDAQ OMX PHLX LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change Relating to a Delay of Implementation Related to the Volume-Based and Multi-Trigger Thresholds July 30, 2015.

    Pursuant to Section 19(b)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (“Act”),1 and Rule 19b-4 thereunder,2 notice is hereby given that on July 21, 2015, NASDAQ OMX PHLX LLC (“Phlx” or “Exchange”) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC” or “Commission”) the proposed rule change as described in Items I and II, below, which Items have been prepared by the Exchange. The Commission is publishing this notice to solicit comments on the proposed rule change from interested persons.

    1 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(1).

    2 17 CFR 240.19b-4.

    I. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Terms of Substance of the Proposed Rule Change

    The Exchange proposes to extend the implementation timeframe for adopting two new Phlx Market Maker 3 risk protections, a volume-based threshold and a multi-trigger threshold.

    3 A “Market Maker” includes Registered Options Traders (“ROTs”) (Rule 1014(b)(i) and (ii)), which includes Streaming Quote Traders (“SQTs”) (See Rule 1014(b)(ii)(A)) and Remote Streaming Quote Traders (“RSQTs”) (See Rule 1014(b)(ii)(B)). An SQT is defined in Exchange Rule 1014(b)(ii)(A) as an ROT who has received permission from the Exchange to generate and submit option quotations electronically in options to which such SQT is assigned. An RSQT is defined in Exchange Rule 1014(b)(ii)(B) as an ROT that is a member or member organization with no physical trading floor presence who has received permission from the Exchange to generate and submit option quotations electronically in options to which such RSQT has been assigned. An RSQT may only submit such quotations electronically from off the floor of the Exchange. A Market Maker also includes a specialist, an Exchange member who is registered as an options specialist pursuant to Rule 1020(a).

    The text of the proposed rule change is available on the Exchange's Web site at http://nasdaqomxphlx.cchwallstreet.com/, at the principal office of the Exchange, and at the Commission's Public Reference Room.

    II. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change

    In its filing with the Commission, the Exchange included statements concerning the purpose of and basis for the proposed rule change and discussed any comments it received on the proposed rule change. The text of these statements may be examined at the places specified in Item IV below. The Exchange has prepared summaries, set forth in sections A, B, and C below, of the most significant aspects of such statements.

    A. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change 1. Purpose

    The purpose of the proposal is to extend the implementation of the Exchange's amendments to Phlx Exchange Rule 1095 entitled “Automated Removal of Market Maker Quotes.” 4 In its rule change regarding the two new risk protections, the Exchange stated that it proposes to “. . . implement this rule within thirty (30) days of the operative date. The Exchange will issue an Options Trader Alert in advance to inform market participants of such date.” 5 At this time, the Exchange desires to extend the implementation of this rule change and request that it implement the rule within (60) days of the operative date. The Exchange will announce the date of implementation by issuing an Options Trader Alert.

    4 This rule became immediately effective on June 22, 2015. Securities Exchange Act Release No. 75372 (July 7, 2015), 80 FR 40107 (July 13, 2015) (SR-Phlx-2015-52).

    5See note 4.

    By way of background, these risk protections are intended to assist Market Makers to control their trading risks.6 Specifically, the risk protections establish: (1) A threshold used to calculate each Market Maker's total volume executed in all series of an underlying security within a specified time period and to compare that to a pre-determined threshold (“Volume-Based Threshold”), and (2) a threshold used to measure the number of times the Phlx XL system (“System”) has triggered 7 based on the Risk Monitor Mechanism (“Percentage-Based Threshold”) pursuant to Rule 1093 and Volume-Based Thresholds within a specified time period and to compare that total to a pre-determined threshold (“Multi-Trigger Threshold”).8

    6See Rule 1014 entitled “Obligations and Restrictions Applicable to Specialists and Registered Options Traders.”

    7 A trigger is defined as the event which causes the System to automatically remove all quotes in all options series in an underlying issue.

    8 The details of the two risk protections are described in the initial filing. See Securities Exchange Act Release No. 75372 (July 7, 2015), 80 FR 40107 (July 13, 2015) (SR-Phlx-2015-52).

    2. Statutory Basis

    The Exchange believes that its proposal is consistent with Section 6(b) of the Act 9 in general, and furthers the objectives of Section 6(b)(5) of the Act 10 in particular, in that it is designed to promote just and equitable principles of trade, to remove impediments to and perfect the mechanism of a free and open market and a national market system, and, in general to protect investors and the public interest, by enhancing the risk protections available to Exchange members. The proposal promotes policy goals of the Commission, which has encouraged execution venues, exchange and non-exchange alike, to enhance risk protection tools and other mechanisms to decrease risk and increase stability.

    9 15 U.S.C. 78f(b).

    10 15 U.S.C. 78f(b)(5).

    The delay of the implementation of Phlx Rule 1095 will permit the Exchange an additional thirty days within which to implement these risk protections that will be utilized by Phlx Market Makers.

    B. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement on Burden on Competition

    The Exchange does not believe that the proposed rule change will impose any burden on competition not necessary or appropriate in furtherance of the purposes of the Act. With respect to the risk protections, the proposal will not impose a burden on intra-market or inter-market competition; rather it provides Market Makers with the opportunity to avail themselves of similar risk tools that are currently available on other exchanges.11 The proposal does not impose a burden on inter-market competition, because members may choose to become market makers on a number of other options exchanges, which may have similar but not identical features.12 The proposed rule change is meant to protect Market Makers from inadvertent exposure to excessive risk. Accordingly, the proposed rule change will have no impact on competition.

    11See Section 8 of Form 19b-4 with respect to this proposed rule change.

    12See BATS Rule 21.16, BOX Rules 8100 and 8110, C2 Rule 8.12, CBOE Rule 8.18, ISE Rule 804(g), MIAX Rule 612, NYSE MKT Rule 928NY and NYSE Arca Rule 6.40.

    The delay of the implementation of Phlx Rule 1095 will permit the Exchange additional time to implement these risk protections that will be utilized by Phlx Market Makers.

    C. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement on Comments on the Proposed Rule Change Received From Members, Participants, or Others

    No written comments were either solicited or received.

    III. Date of Effectiveness of the Proposed Rule Change and Timing for Commission Action

    Because the foregoing proposed rule change does not: (i) Significantly affect the protection of investors or the public interest; (ii) impose any significant burden on competition; and (iii) become operative for 30 days from the date on which it was filed, or such shorter time as the Commission may designate, it has become effective pursuant to Section 19(b)(3)(A)(ii) of the Act 13 and subparagraph (f)(6) of Rule 19b-4 thereunder.14 The Exchange has requested that the Commission waive the thirty-day operative delay so that the proposal may become operative immediately. The Exchange states that waiving the thirty-day operative delay will enable it to implement these risk protections within the new timeframe. The Commission believes that waiving the thirty day delay is consistent with the protection of investors and the public interest. Therefore, the Commission hereby waives the thirty-day operative delay and designates the proposal effective upon filing.15

    13 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(3)(a)(ii).

    14 17 CFR 240.19b-4(f)(6). In addition, Rule 19b-4(f)(6) requires a self-regulatory organization to give the Commission written notice of its intent to file the proposed rule change at least five business days prior to the date of filing of the proposed rule change, or such shorter time as designated by the Commission. The Exchange has satisfied this requirement.

    15 For purposes of waiving the 30-day operative delay, the Commission has considered the proposed rule's impact on efficiency, competition, and capital formation. See 15 U.S.C. 78c(f).

    At any time within 60 days of the filing of the proposed rule change, the Commission summarily may temporarily suspend such rule change if it appears to the Commission that such action is: (i) Necessary or appropriate in the public interest; (ii) for the protection of investors; or (iii) otherwise in furtherance of the purposes of the Act. If the Commission takes such action, the Commission shall institute proceedings to determine whether the proposed rule should be approved or disapproved.

    IV. Solicitation of Comments

    Interested persons are invited to submit written data, views, and arguments concerning the foregoing, including whether the proposed rule change is consistent with the Act. Comments may be submitted by any of the following methods:

    Electronic Comments

    • Use the Commission's Internet comment form (http://www.sec.gov/rules/sro.shtml); or

    • Send an email to [email protected] Please include File Number SR-Phlx-2015-67 on the subject line.

    Paper Comments

    • Send paper comments in triplicate to Secretary, Securities and Exchange Commission, 100 F Street NE., Washington, DC 20549-1090.

    All submissions should refer to File Number SR-Phlx-2015-67. This file number should be included on the subject line if email is used. To help the Commission process and review your comments more efficiently, please use only one method. The Commission will post all comments on the Commission's Internet Web site (http://www.sec.gov/rules/sro.shtml).

    Copies of the submission, all subsequent amendments, all written statements with respect to the proposed rule change that are filed with the Commission, and all written communications relating to the proposed rule change between the Commission and any person, other than those that may be withheld from the public in accordance with the provisions of 5 U.S.C. 552, will be available for Web site viewing and printing in the Commission's Public Reference Room, 100 F Street NE., Washington, DC 20549, on official business days between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Copies of the filing also will be available for inspection and copying at the principal office of the Exchange. All comments received will be posted without change; the Commission does not edit personal identifying information from submissions. You should submit only information that you wish to make available publicly.

    All submissions should refer to File Number SR-Phlx-2015-67 and should be submitted on or before August 26, 2015.

    16 17 CFR 200.30-3(a)(12).

    For the Commission, by the Division of Trading and Markets, pursuant to delegated authority.16

    Robert W. Errett, Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19128 Filed 8-4-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 8011-01-P
    SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION [File No. 500-1] In the Matter of Wonder International Education and Investment Group Corp.; Order of Suspension of Trading August 3, 2015.

    It appears to the Securities and Exchange Commission (“Commission”) that there is a lack of current and accurate information concerning the securities of Wonder International Education and Investment Group Corp. (CIK No. 0001456137) (“WIEI”) because WIEI has not filed any periodic reports since it filed a Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2013 on November 14, 2013. The company has not filed audited financials since July 25, 2013, when it filed its amended Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2012. In particular, it appears to the Commission that there is a lack of accurate and reliable information concerning WIEI's financial condition and the current status of its business. WIEI is an Arizona corporation originally based in Scottsdale, Arizona. Its stock is quoted on OTC Link, operated by OTC Markets Group Inc., under the ticker: WIEI. The Commission is of the opinion that the public interest and the protection of investors require a suspension of trading in the securities of the above-listed company.

    Therefore, it is ordered, pursuant to Section 12(k) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, that trading in the securities of the above-listed company is suspended for the period from 9:30 a.m. EDT on August 3, 2015, through 11:59 p.m. EDT on August 14, 2015.

    By the Commission.

    Brent J. Fields, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-19311 Filed 8-3-15; 11:15 am] BILLING CODE 8011-01-P
    SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION [Release No. 34-75566; File No. SR-NYSEArca-2015-42] Self-Regulatory Organizations; NYSE Arca, Inc.; Order Approving a Proposed Rule Change, as Modified by Amendments No. 1 and No. 2, To List and Trade of Shares of Newfleet Multi-Sector Unconstrained Bond ETF Under NYSE Arca Equities Rule 8.600 July 30, 2015. I. Introduction

    On June 5, 2015, NYSE Arca, Inc. (“Exchange”) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“Commission”), pursuant to section 19(b)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (“Exchange Act”) 1 and Rule 19b-4 thereunder,2 a proposed rule change to list and trade shares (“Shares”) of the Newfleet Multi-Sector Unconstrained Bond ETF (“Fund”), a series of the ETFis Series Trust I (“Trust”) under NYSE Arca Equities Rule 8.600, which governs the listing and trading of Managed Fund Shares. On June 15, 2015, the Exchange filed Amendment No. 1 to the proposed rule change.3 The Commission published notice of the proposed rule change, as modified by Amendment No. 1 thereto, in the Federal Register on June 24, 2015.4 On July 23, 2015, the Exchange filed Amendment No. 2 to the proposed rule change.5 The Commission received no comments on the proposal. This order approves the proposed rule change, as modified by Amendments No. 1 and No. 2.

    1 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(1).

    2 17 CFR 240.19b-4.

    3 Amendment No. 1 to the proposed rule change replaced and superseded the original filing in its entirety.

    4See Securities Exchange Act Release No. 75247 (June 18, 2015), 80 FR 36372 (“Notice”).

    5 Amendment No. 2 clarified that the Adviser expects that, under normal market conditions, the Fund will seek to invest at least 75% of its corporate bond assets in issuances that have at least $100,000,000 par amount outstanding in developed countries or at least $200,000,000 par amount outstanding in emerging market countries. Because it only makes this clarification and does not materially affect the substance of the proposed rule change or raise unique or novel regulatory issues, Amendment No. 2 to the proposed rule change does not require notice and comment. The text of Amendment No. 2 is available at: http://www.sec.gov/comments/sr-nysearca-2015-42/nysearca201542-2.pdf.

    II. The Exchange's Description of the Proposal 6

    6 The Commission notes that additional information regarding the Fund, the Trust, and the Shares, including investment strategies, risks, creation and redemption procedures, fees, portfolio holdings, disclosure policies, calculation of net asset value (“NAV”), distributions, and taxes, among other things, can be found in the Notice and the Registration Statement, as applicable. See Notice, supra note 3, and Registration Statement, infra note 7.

    NYSE Arca proposes to list and trade Shares under NYSE Arca Equities Rule 8.600, which governs the listing and trading of Managed Fund Shares on the Exchange. The Shares will be offered by the Trust, which is registered with the Commission as an investment company.7 The investment adviser to the Fund will be Etfis Capital LLC (“Adviser”), and the sub-adviser to the Fund will be Newfleet Asset Management LLC (“Sub-Adviser”).8 ETF Issuer Solutions Inc. will serve as the Fund's operational administrator. ETF Distributors LLC will serve as the distributor, and the Bank of New York Mellon will serve as the administrator, custodian, transfer agent and fund accounting agent for the Fund.

    7 The Trust is registered under the Investment Company Act of 1940 (“1940 Act”). The Exchange states that on January 26, 2015, the Trust filed with the Commission an amendment to its registration statement on Form N-1A under the Securities Act of 1933 (15 U.S.C. 77a) (“Securities Act”) and under the 1940 Act relating to the Fund (File Nos. 333-187668 and 811-22819) (“Registration Statement”).

    8 The Adviser and Sub-Adviser are not registered as broker-dealers, but each is affiliated with one or more broker-dealers and has implemented and will maintain a fire wall with respect to each such broker-dealer affiliate regarding access to information concerning the composition of or changes to the portfolio. In the event (a) the Adviser or Sub-Adviser become registered broker-dealers or newly affiliated with a broker-dealer, or (b) any new adviser or sub-adviser is a registered broker-dealer or becomes affiliated with a broker-dealer, it will implement a fire wall with respect to its relevant personnel or its broker-dealer affiliate regarding access to information concerning the composition of or changes to the portfolio, and it will be subject to procedures designed to prevent the use and dissemination of material non-public information regarding such portfolio.

    The Fund's investment objective is to provide a high level of current income and, secondarily, capital appreciation. Under normal market conditions,9