Federal Register Vol. 80, No.186,

Federal Register Volume 80, Issue 186 (September 25, 2015)

Page Range57693-58194
FR Document

80_FR_186
Current View
Page and SubjectPDF
80 FR 57910 - Culturally Significant Objects Imported for Exhibition Determinations: “Delacroix's Influence: The Rise of Modern Art From Cézanne to van Gogh” ExhibitionPDF
80 FR 57882 - Sunshine Act; Notice of Agency MeetingPDF
80 FR 57879 - Sunshine Act MeetingPDF
80 FR 57741 - Changes to Requirements for Field Testing Regulated Genetically Engineered WheatPDF
80 FR 57808 - Environmental Modeling Public Meeting; Notice of Public MeetingPDF
80 FR 57901 - Sunshine Act MeetingPDF
80 FR 57906 - Kentucky Disaster #KY-00060PDF
80 FR 57907 - West Virginia Disaster Number WV-00041PDF
80 FR 57902 - Privacy Act; Computer Matching AgreementPDF
80 FR 57816 - Farm Credit System Insurance Corporation Board; Regular MeetingPDF
80 FR 57826 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection; Comment RequestPDF
80 FR 57821 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment RequestPDF
80 FR 57820 - Request for Nominations of Candidates To Serve as Members of the Community Preventive Services Task ForcePDF
80 FR 57817 - Formations of, Acquisitions by, and Mergers of Bank Holding CompaniesPDF
80 FR 57910 - Culturally Significant Objects Imported for Exhibition Determinations: “Sōtatsu: Making Waves” ExhibitionPDF
80 FR 57910 - Culturally Significant Objects Imported for Exhibition Determinations: “Frank Stella: A Retrospective” ExhibitionPDF
80 FR 57809 - Recommendations for Specifications, Environmental Performance Standards, and Ecolabels for Federal ProcurementPDF
80 FR 57807 - Environmental Impact Statements; Notice of AvailabilityPDF
80 FR 57911 - PACCAR, Inc., Receipt of Petition for Decision of Inconsequential NoncompliancePDF
80 FR 57785 - Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) 33-Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Notification of Proposed Production Activity, DNP Imagingcomm America Corporation, Subzone 33E, (Thermal Transfer Ribbon Master Rolls), Mount Pleasant, PennsylvaniaPDF
80 FR 57812 - Pesticide Registration Review; Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments for Sulfonylureas and Certain Other Pesticides; Notice of Availability and Request for CommentPDF
80 FR 57785 - Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) 230-Piedmont Triad Area, North Carolina, Notification of Proposed Production Activity, Deere-Hitachi Construction Machinery Corporation, (Hydraulic Excavators), Kernersville, North CarolinaPDF
80 FR 57811 - Receipt of Test Data under the Toxic Substances Control ActPDF
80 FR 57787 - Silicomanganese From Australia: Preliminary Affirmative Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value and Postponement of Final DeterminationPDF
80 FR 57785 - Foreign-Trade Zone 122-Corpus Christi, Texas, Authorization of Production Activity, voestalpine Texas, LLC, Subzone 122T, (Hot Briquetted Iron), Portland, TexasPDF
80 FR 57893 - Principal Exchange-Traded Funds, et al.; Notice of ApplicationPDF
80 FR 57891 - General Electric Company and GE Capital International Funding Company; Notice of ApplicationPDF
80 FR 57829 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; OAA Title III-E EvaluationPDF
80 FR 57738 - Fisheries Off West Coast States; Modifications of the West Coast Commercial and Recreational Salmon Fisheries; Inseason Actions #30 Through #36PDF
80 FR 57701 - Federal Contract Tower Safety Action Program (SAFER-FCT) and Air Traffic Safety Action Program for Engineers & Architects, Staff Support Specialists, Aviation Technical System Specialists (Series 2186) and Flight Procedures Team (ATSAP-X)PDF
80 FR 57862 - Reopening of the Public Comment Period and Two Additional Public Meetings for the Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement and Draft Plan Amendment, California Desert Conservation Area Plan, West Mojave Planning Area, Inyo, Kern, Los Angeles and San Bernardino CountiesPDF
80 FR 57790 - Western Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public MeetingPDF
80 FR 57790 - Fisheries of the South Atlantic; South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (SAFMC); Public MeetingPDF
80 FR 57734 - Suspension of Community EligibilityPDF
80 FR 57840 - Kentucky; Amendment No. 2 to Notice of a Major Disaster DeclarationPDF
80 FR 57848 - 60-Day Notice of Proposed Information Collection: Mark-to-Market Program: Requirements for Community-Based Non-Profit Organizations and Public AgenciesPDF
80 FR 57838 - Louisiana; Amendment No. 2 to Notice of a Major Disaster DeclarationPDF
80 FR 57874 - Webinar Meeting of the Federal Advisory Committee on Juvenile JusticePDF
80 FR 57840 - Proposed Flood Hazard Determinations for Polk County, Minnesota and Incorporated AreasPDF
80 FR 57887 - Submission for Review: Certification of Qualifying District of Columbia Service Under Section 1905 of Public Law 111-84, RI 20-126, 3206-XXXXPDF
80 FR 57798 - Proposed Agency Information CollectionPDF
80 FR 57767 - Proposed Flood Elevation Determinations for Mercer County, New Jersey (All Jurisdictions)PDF
80 FR 57886 - Submission for Review; Reinstatement of Disability Annuity Previously Terminated Because of Restoration to Earning Capacity, RI 30-9, 3206-0138PDF
80 FR 57888 - Submission for Review: Rollover Election (RI 38-117), Rollover Information (RI 38-118) and Special Tax Notice Regarding Rollovers (RI 37-22), 3206-0212PDF
80 FR 57767 - Proposed Flood Elevation Determinations for Butler County, Pennsylvania (All Jurisdictions)PDF
80 FR 57797 - Agency Information Collection ExtensionPDF
80 FR 57887 - Federal Salary Council; Meeting NoticePDF
80 FR 57915 - Global Positioning System Adjacent Band Compatibility Assessment Workshop IVPDF
80 FR 57877 - United States-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement; Notice of Determination Regarding Review of Submission #2015-01PDF
80 FR 57783 - Notice of Request for Renewal of a Currently Approved Information CollectionPDF
80 FR 57874 - Establishing a Minimum Wage for Contractors, Notice of Rate Change in Effect as of January 1, 2016; CorrectionPDF
80 FR 57841 - Final Flood Hazard Determinations; CorrectionPDF
80 FR 57838 - Washington; Amendment No. 1 to Notice of an Emergency DeclarationPDF
80 FR 57842 - Proposed Flood Hazard DeterminationsPDF
80 FR 57837 - Proposed Flood Hazard DeterminationsPDF
80 FR 57693 - Managing Senior Executive PerformancePDF
80 FR 57795 - Submission for OMB Review; Comment RequestPDF
80 FR 57839 - Proposed Flood Hazard DeterminationsPDF
80 FR 57873 - Notice of Lodging of Proposed Consent Decree Under the Clean Air ActPDF
80 FR 57791 - Limitations of Duty- and Quota-Free Imports of Apparel Articles Assembled in Beneficiary Sub-Saharan African Countries From Regional and Third-Country FabricPDF
80 FR 57831 - Bright Futures Pediatric Implementation Cooperative AgreementPDF
80 FR 57783 - Notice of Request for Revision of Currently Approved Information CollectionPDF
80 FR 57830 - Bright Futures Pediatric Implementation Cooperative AgreementPDF
80 FR 57862 - Atlantic Wind Lease Sale 5 (ATLW5) for Commercial Leasing for Wind Power on the Outer Continental Shelf Offshore New Jersey-Final Sale NoticePDF
80 FR 57873 - Outer Continental Shelf, Alaska Region, Beaufort Sea Planning Area, Liberty Development and Production Plan, MMAA104000PDF
80 FR 57787 - Emerging Technology and Research Advisory Committee; Notice of Partially Closed MeetingPDF
80 FR 57786 - Materials Processing Equipment Technical Advisory Committee; Notice of Partially Closed MeetingPDF
80 FR 57792 - Procurement List; Additions and DeletionsPDF
80 FR 57792 - Procurement List; Proposed AdditionPDF
80 FR 57784 - Yavapai Resource Advisory CommitteePDF
80 FR 57806 - Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company, LLC; Notice of Public Scoping Meeting for the Northeast Energy Direct Project, and Extension of Scoping Comment PeriodPDF
80 FR 57805 - Cascade Clean Energy, Inc.; Kingdom Energy Products; Notice of Transfer of ExemptionPDF
80 FR 57803 - Alabama Power Company; Notice of Authorization for Continued Project OperationPDF
80 FR 57800 - PacifiCorp; Notice of Scoping Meeting and Soliciting Scoping Comments for an Applicant Prepared Environmental Assessment Using the Alternative Licensing ProcessPDF
80 FR 57807 - Meyersdale Storage, LLC; Supplemental Notice That Initial Market-Based Rate Filing Includes Request for Blanket Section 204 AuthorizationPDF
80 FR 57801 - Green Mountain Storage, LLC; Supplemental Notice That Initial Market-Based Rate Filing Includes Request For Blanket Section 204 AuthorizationPDF
80 FR 57799 - Carousel Wind Farm, LLC; Supplemental Notice That Initial Market-Based Rate Filing Includes Request for Blanket Section 204 AuthorizationPDF
80 FR 57801 - Notice of Effectiveness of Exempt Wholesale Generator StatusPDF
80 FR 57803 - Steve Patton; Notice of Declaration of Intention and Soliciting Comments, Protests, and Motions To IntervenePDF
80 FR 57804 - City of Cheyenne, Wyoming; Notice of Preliminary Determination of a Qualifying Conduit Hydropower Facility and Soliciting Comments and Motions To IntervenePDF
80 FR 57805 - Records Governing Off-the-Record Communications; Public NoticePDF
80 FR 57806 - ETP Crude LLC; Notice of Petition for Declaratory OrderPDF
80 FR 57799 - RC Cape May Holdings, LLC; Notice of Institution of Section 206 Proceeding and Refund Effective DatePDF
80 FR 57804 - Combined Notice of Filings #2PDF
80 FR 57802 - Combined Notice of Filings #1PDF
80 FR 57817 - Change in Bank Control Notices; Acquisitions of Shares of a Bank or Bank Holding CompanyPDF
80 FR 57906 - Revocation of License of Small Business Investment CompanyPDF
80 FR 57906 - Surrender of License of Small Business Investment CompanyPDF
80 FR 57906 - Reporting and Recordkeeping Requirements Under OMB ReviewPDF
80 FR 57786 - Information Systems Technical Advisory Committee; Notice of Partially Closed MeetingPDF
80 FR 57737 - Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; Fishery Management Council Freedom of Information Act Requests Regulations; Technical Amendments to RegulationsPDF
80 FR 57722 - Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Hood Canal, Port Gamble, WAPDF
80 FR 57848 - Land Acquisitions; Mashpee Wampanoag TribePDF
80 FR 57827 - Medicare Program; Medicare Appeals; Adjustment to the Amount in Controversy Threshold Amounts for Calendar Year 2016PDF
80 FR 57825 - Medicare and Medicaid Programs; Continued Approval of the American Diabetes Association as an Accrediting Organization for Diabetes Self-Management Training ProgramsPDF
80 FR 57824 - Medicare and Medicaid Programs; Continued Approval of the American Association of Diabetes Educators as an Accrediting Organization for Diabetes Self-Management Training ProgramsPDF
80 FR 57822 - Medicare and Medicaid Programs: Application From the American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery Facilities for Continued Approval of Its Rural Health Accreditation ProgramPDF
80 FR 57891 - Product Change-Priority Mail Negotiated Service AgreementPDF
80 FR 57890 - Product Change-Priority Mail Negotiated Service AgreementPDF
80 FR 57891 - Product Change-Parcel Select Negotiated Service AgreementPDF
80 FR 57818 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment RequestPDF
80 FR 57816 - Information Collection Being Reviewed by the Federal Communications CommissionPDF
80 FR 57709 - Reliance Standards for Making Good Faith DeterminationsPDF
80 FR 57878 - The Lead in General Industry Standard; Extension of the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Approval of Information Collection (Paperwork) RequirementsPDF
80 FR 57744 - Airworthiness Directives; The Boeing Company AirplanesPDF
80 FR 57717 - Multiemployer Plans; Electronic Filing Requirements; CorrectionPDF
80 FR 57793 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Comment RequestPDF
80 FR 57732 - Approval and Promulgation of State Plans for Designated Facilities and Pollutants; Missouri; Control of Mercury Emissions From Electric Generating UnitsPDF
80 FR 57835 - Letter of Recommendation for Washington State Ferries Liquefied Natural Gas Conversion; Seattle, WAPDF
80 FR 57767 - Approval and Promulgation of State Plans for Designated Facilities and Pollutants; Missouri; Control of Mercury Emissions From Electric Generating UnitsPDF
80 FR 57834 - Cook Inlet Regional Citizen's Advisory Council (CIRCAC) Charter RenewalPDF
80 FR 57720 - Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Rancocas Creek, Centerton, NJPDF
80 FR 57832 - Prospective Grant of Start-Up Exclusive Evaluation Option License Agreement: Development of Diagnostic Tests and Kits for Detection of Pathological Angiogenesis in CancerPDF
80 FR 57789 - Certain Oil Country Tubular Goods From the People's Republic of China; Notice of Court Decision Not in Harmony With Final Results of Administrative Review and Notice of Amended Final Results of Administrative Review Pursuant to Court DecisionPDF
80 FR 57796 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment Request; TEACH Grant: Study of Institutional Practices and Grant Recipient Outcomes and ExperiencesPDF
80 FR 57727 - Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans; Florida; Combs Oil Company VariancePDF
80 FR 57730 - Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans; Mississippi: Miscellaneous ChangesPDF
80 FR 57717 - Special Local Regulations; Temporary Change for Recurring Marine Event in the Fifth Coast Guard DistrictPDF
80 FR 57832 - National Institute on Aging; Notice of Closed MeetingPDF
80 FR 57834 - National Cancer Institute; Notice of Closed MeetingsPDF
80 FR 57833 - Center For Scientific Review; Notice of Closed MeetingsPDF
80 FR 57765 - Clarification of Employer's Continuing Obligation To Make and Maintain an Accurate Record of Each Recordable Injury and Illness; Extension of Comment PeriodPDF
80 FR 57885 - Integrated Safety Analysis Standards for Acute Uranium Exposure of WorkersPDF
80 FR 57734 - Water Quality Standards Regulatory Revisions; CorrectionPDF
80 FR 57756 - Clarification of When Products Made or Derived From Tobacco Are Regulated as Drugs, Devices, or Combination Products; Amendments to Regulations Regarding “Intended Uses”PDF
80 FR 57885 - Northern States Power Company-Minnesota; Prairie Island Nuclear Generating Plant, Units 1 and 2PDF
80 FR 57882 - Notice of Permit Modification Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978PDF
80 FR 57883 - Chilled Water SystemPDF
80 FR 57890 - New Postal ProductPDF
80 FR 57907 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Request and Comment RequestPDF
80 FR 57884 - Review and Submission of Updates to the Final Safety Analysis Reports, Emergency Preparedness Documents, and Fire Protection DocumentsPDF
80 FR 57889 - New Postal ProductPDF
80 FR 57881 - NASA Advisory Council; Science Committee; Astrophysics Subcommittee; MeetingPDF
80 FR 57888 - New Postal ProductPDF
80 FR 57828 - Proposed Information Collection Activity; Comment RequestPDF
80 FR 57704 - Disturbance Monitoring and Reporting Requirements Reliability StandardPDF
80 FR 57795 - Availability of a Final Integrated Feasibility Report (Feasibility Study/Environmental Impact Statement/Environmental Impact Report), Los Angeles River Ecosystem Restoration Study, City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, CAPDF
80 FR 57793 - Army Education Advisory Subcommittee Meeting NoticePDF
80 FR 57794 - Notice of Intent To Grant Exclusive Patent License to Applied Materials; Austin, TXPDF
80 FR 57742 - Airworthiness Directives Airbus Helicopters (Previously Eurocopter France)PDF
80 FR 57698 - Sorghum Promotion, Research, and Information ProgramPDF
80 FR 57843 - Federal Property Suitable as Facilities To Assist the HomelessPDF
80 FR 58094 - Overtime Pay for Border Patrol AgentsPDF
80 FR 57729 - Air Plan Approval; GA; Removal of Stage II Gasoline Vapor Recovery ProgramPDF
80 FR 58166 - Migratory Bird Hunting; Late Seasons and Bag and Possession Limits for Certain Migratory Game BirdsPDF
80 FR 58158 - Migratory Bird Hunting; Migratory Bird Hunting Regulations on Certain Federal Indian Reservations and Ceded Lands for the 2015-16 Late SeasonPDF
80 FR 57755 - Proposed Establishment of Class E Airspace; International Falls, MNPDF
80 FR 57700 - Establishment of Class E Airspace; Poplarville-Pearl River County Airport, MSPDF
80 FR 57699 - Amendment of Class E Airspace; Mackall AAF, NCPDF
80 FR 57753 - Airworthiness Directives; Alpha Aviation Concept Limited AirplanesPDF
80 FR 57751 - Airworthiness Directives; Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation (Sikorsky) HelicoptersPDF
80 FR 57725 - Revisions to the California State Implementation Plan, Monterey Bay Unified Air Pollution Control District, Ventura County Air Pollution Control DistrictPDF
80 FR 57766 - Revisions to the California State Implementation Plan, Monterey Bay Unified Air Pollution Control District, Ventura County Air Pollution Control DistrictPDF
80 FR 58124 - Removal of Certain References to Credit Ratings and Amendment to the Issuer Diversification Requirement in the Money Market Fund RulePDF
80 FR 57768 - Technology Transitions, Policies and Rules Governing Retirement of Copper Loops by Incumbent Local Exchange Carriers and Special Access for Price Cap Local Exchange CarriersPDF
80 FR 57912 - Administration Hazardous Materials: Actions on Special Permit ApplicationsPDF
80 FR 57913 - Hazardous Materials: Delayed ApplicationsPDF
80 FR 57914 - Hazardous Materials: Notice of Application for Modification of Special PermitPDF
80 FR 57722 - Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; New Hampshire; Nonattainment New Source Review and Prevention of Significant Deterioration ProgramPDF
80 FR 58014 - Management Standards for Hazardous Waste PharmaceuticalsPDF
80 FR 57918 - Hazardous Waste Generator ImprovementsPDF

Issue

80 186 Friday, September 25, 2015 Contents Agricultural Marketing Agricultural Marketing Service RULES Sorghum Promotion, Research, and Information Program, 57698-57699 2015-24223 Agriculture Agriculture Department See

Agricultural Marketing Service

See

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

See

Commodity Credit Corporation

See

Federal Crop Insurance Corporation

See

Forest Service

Animal Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service PROPOSED RULES Changes to Requirements for Field Testing Regulated Genetically Engineered Wheat, 57741 2015-24553 Army Army Department NOTICES Exclusive Patent License Approvals: Applied Materials, Austin, TX, 57794 2015-24267 Meetings: Army Education Advisory Subcommittee, 57793-57794 2015-24269 Consumer Financial Protection Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 57793 2015-24341 Centers Disease Centers for Disease Control and Prevention NOTICES Requests for Nominations: Candidates to Serve as Members of the Community Preventive Services Task Force, 57820-57821 2015-24470 Centers Medicare Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 57821-57822, 57826-57827 2015-24471 2015-24474 Application for Continued Approval of its Rural Health Accreditation Program: American Association of Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgery Facilities, 57822-57824 2015-24356 Approval as an Accrediting Organization for Diabetes Self-Management Training Programs: American Diabetes Association, 57825-57826 2015-24358 Medicare and Medicaid Programs: Continued Approval of the American Association of Diabetes Educators as an Accrediting Organization for Diabetes Self-Management Training Programs, 57824-57825 2015-24357 Medicare Program: Medicare Appeals; Adjustment to the Amount in Controversy Threshold Amounts for Calendar Year 2016, 57827-57828 2015-24359 Children Children and Families Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 57828-57829 2015-24293 Coast Guard Coast Guard RULES Drawbridge Operations: Hood Canal, Port Gamble, WA, 57722 2015-24363 Rancocas Creek, Centerton, NJ, 57720-57721 2015-24333 Special Local Regulations: Temporary Change for Recurring Marine Event in the Fifth Coast Guard District, 57717-57720 2015-24323 NOTICES Charter Renewals: Cook Inlet Regional Citizen's Advisory Council, 57834-57835 2015-24335 Letter of Recommendation for Washington State Ferries Liquefied Natural Gas Conversion; Seattle, WA, 57835-57837 2015-24337 Commerce Commerce Department See

Foreign-Trade Zones Board

See

Industry and Security Bureau

See

International Trade Administration

See

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Committee for Purchase Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled NOTICES Procurement List; Additions and Deletions, 2015-24387 57792-57793 2015-24388 Committee Implementation Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements NOTICES Limitations of Duty-and Quota-Free Imports of Apparel Articles Assembled in Beneficiary Sub-Saharan African Countries from Regional and Third-Country Fabric, 57791-57792 2015-24399 Commodity Credit Commodity Credit Corporation NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 57783 2015-24394 Community Living Administration Community Living Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: OAA Title III-E Evaluation, 57829-57830 2015-24444 Defense Department Defense Department See

Army Department

See

Engineers Corps

NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 2015-24396 57795 2015-24404
Education Department Education Department NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: TEACH Grant-Study of Institutional Practices and Grant Recipient Outcomes and Experiences, 57796-57797 2015-24326 Energy Department Energy Department See

Energy Information Administration

See

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

Energy Information Energy Information Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 57797-57799 2015-24417 2015-24422 Engineers Engineers Corps NOTICES Final Integrated Feasibility Reports: Los Angeles River Ecosystem Restoration Study, City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, CA, 57795-57796 2015-24273 Environmental Protection Environmental Protection Agency RULES Air Quality State Implementation Plans; Approvals and Promulgations: Florida; Combs Oil Company Variance, 57727-57729 2015-24325 Georgia; Removal of Stage II Gasoline Vapor Recovery Program, 57729-57730 2015-24186 Mississippi; Miscellaneous Changes, 57730-57732 2015-24324 New Hampshire; Nonattainment New Source Review and Prevention of Significant Deterioration Program, 57722-57725 2015-23176 Revisions to the California State Implementation Plan, Monterey Bay Unified Air Pollution Control District, Ventura County Air Pollution Control District, 57725-57727 2015-24106 Approval and Promulgation of State Plans for Designated Facilities and Pollutants: MO; Control of Mercury Emissions from Electric Generating Units, 57732-57734 2015-24339 Water Quality Standards Regulatory Revisions; Correction, 57734 2015-24314 PROPOSED RULES Air Quality State Implementation Plans; Approvals and Promulgations: Revisions to the California State Implementation Plan, Monterey Bay Unified Air Pollution Control District, Ventura County Air Pollution Control District, 57766 2015-24104 Approval and Promulgation of State Plans for Designated Facilities and Pollutants: MO; Control of Mercury Emissions from Electric Generating Units, 57767 2015-24336 Hazardous Waste Generator Improvements, 57918-58012 2015-23166 Management Standards for Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals, 58014-58092 2015-23167 NOTICES Environmental Impact Statements; Availability, etc.; Weekly Receipts, 57807-57808 2015-24455 Meetings: Environmental Modeling, 57808-57809 2015-24550 Pesticide Registration: Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments for Sulfonylureas and Certain Other Pesticides, 57812-57816 2015-24452 Recommendations for Specifications, Environmental Performance Standards, and Ecolabels for Federal Procurement, 57809-57811 2015-24456 Test Data under the Toxic Substances Control Act, 57811-57812 2015-24450 Farm Credit System Insurance Farm Credit System Insurance Corporation NOTICES Meetings: Farm Credit System Insurance Corporation Board, 57816 2015-24476 Federal Aviation Federal Aviation Administration RULES Amendment of Class E Airspace: Mackall AAF, NC, 57699-57700 2015-24152 Establishment of Class E Airspace: Poplarville-Pearl River County Airport, MS, 57700-57701 2015-24153 Federal Contract Tower Safety Action Program and Air Traffic Safety Action Program: Engineers and Architects, Staff Support Specialists, Aviation Technical System Specialists, and Flight Procedures Team, 57701-57703 2015-24438 PROPOSED RULES Airworthiness Directives: Airbus Helicopters (previously Eurocopter France), 57742-57744 2015-24251 Alpha Aviation Concept Limited Airplanes, 57753-57755 2015-24149 Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation (Sikorsky) Helicopters, 57751-57753 2015-24148 The Boeing Company Airplanes, 57744-57751 2015-24344 Establishment of Class E Airspace: International Falls, MN, 57755 2015-24159 Federal Communications Federal Communications Commission PROPOSED RULES Technology Transitions, Policies and Rules Governing Retirement of Copper Loops by Incumbent Local Exchange Carriers and Special Access for Price Cap Local Exchange Carriers, 57768-57782 2015-23623 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 57816-57817 2015-24347 Federal Crop Federal Crop Insurance Corporation NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 57783-57784 2015-24413 Federal Emergency Federal Emergency Management Agency RULES Suspension of Community Eligibility, 57734-57737 2015-24433 PROPOSED RULES Flood Elevation Determinations: Butler County, PA (All Jurisdictions); Withdrawal, 57767 2015-24418 Mercer County, NJ (All Jurisdictions); Withdrawal, 57767-57768 2015-24421 NOTICES Emergency Declarations: Washington; Amendment No. 1, 57838 2015-24410 Final Flood Hazard Determinations; Correction, 57841-57842 2015-24411 Flood Hazard Determinations, 57837-57840 2015-24402 2015-24407 Major Disaster Declarations: Kentucky; Amendment No. 2, 57840-57841 2015-24430 Louisiana; Amendment No. 2, 57838-57839 2015-24428 Privacy Act; Computer Matching Agreement, 57902-57906 2015-24477 Proposed Flood Hazard Determinations, 57842-57843 2015-24409 Proposed Flood Hazard Determinations: Polk County, MN and Incorporated Areas, 57840 2015-24426 Federal Energy Federal Energy Regulatory Commission RULES Disturbance Monitoring and Reporting Requirements Reliability Standard, 57704-57709 2015-24278 NOTICES Applications: Steve Patton, 57803-57804 2015-24376 Combined Filings, 57802-57804 2015-24370 2015-24371 Continued Project Operation Authorizations: Alabama Power Co., 57803 2015-24382 Environmental Assessments; Availability, etc.: PacifiCorp, 57800-57801 2015-24381 Exempt Wholesale Generator or Foreign Utility Company Status: Panda Liberty LLC, Panda Patriot LLC, Panda Stonewall LLC, et al., 57801-57802 2015-24377 Exemption Transfers: Cascade Clean Energy, Inc. to Kingdom Energy Products, 57805 2015-24383 Initial Market-Based Rate Filings Including Requests for Blanket Section 204 Authorizations: Carousel Wind Farm, LLC, 57799-57800 2015-24378 Green Mountain Storage, LLC, 57801 2015-24379 Meyersdale Storage, LLC, 57807 2015-24380 Institution of Section 206 Proceeding and Refund Effective Dates: RC Cape May Holdings, LLC, 57799 2015-24372 Meetings: Northeast Energy Direct Pipeline Project; Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company, LLC, 57806-57807 2015-24384 Petitions for Declaratory Orders: ETP Crude, LLC, 57806 2015-24373 Preliminary Determinations of Qualifying Conduit Hydropower Facilities: Cheyenne, WY, 57804-57805 2015-24375 Records Governing Off-the-Record Communications, 57805-57806 2015-24374 Federal Reserve Federal Reserve System NOTICES Changes in Bank Control: Acquisitions of Shares of a Bank or Bank Holding Company, 57817-57818 2015-24369 Formations of, Acquisitions by, and Mergers of Bank Holding Companies, 57817 2015-24469 Federal Trade Federal Trade Commission NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 57818-57820 2015-24350 Fish Fish and Wildlife Service RULES Migratory Bird Hunting: Late Seasons and Bag and Possession Limits for Certain Migratory Game Birds, 58166-58194 2015-24166 Regulations on Certain Federal Indian Reservations and Ceded Lands for the 2015-16 Late Season, 58158-58163 2015-24162 Food and Drug Food and Drug Administration PROPOSED RULES Clarification of When Products Made or Derived From Tobacco Are Regulated as Drugs, Devices, or Combination Products; Regulations Regarding Intended Uses, 57756-57765 2015-24313 Foreign Trade Foreign-Trade Zones Board NOTICES Production Activities: Foreign-Trade Zone 122; Corpus Christi, TX, 57785 2015-24447 Foreign-Trade Zone 230; Piedmont Triad Area, NC, 57785 2015-24451 Foreign-Trade Zone 33; Pittsburgh, PA, 57785-57786 2015-24453 Forest Forest Service NOTICES Meetings: Yavapai Resource Advisory Committee, 57784-57785 2015-24385 Health and Human Health and Human Services Department See

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

See

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

See

Children and Families Administration

See

Community Living Administration

See

Food and Drug Administration

See

Health Resources and Services Administration

See

National Institutes of Health

Health Resources Health Resources and Services Administration NOTICES Bright Futures Pediatric Implementation Cooperative Agreement, 57830-57832 2015-24393 2015-24395 Homeland Homeland Security Department See

Coast Guard

See

Federal Emergency Management Agency

Housing Housing and Urban Development Department NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Mark-to-Market Program; Requirements for Community-Based Non-Profit Organizations and Public Agencies, 57848 2015-24429 Federal Property Suitable as Facilities to Assist the Homeless, 57843-57848 2015-24200 Indian Affairs Indian Affairs Bureau NOTICES Land Acquisitions: Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe, 57848-57862 2015-24360 Industry Industry and Security Bureau NOTICES Meetings: Emerging Technology and Research Advisory Committee, 57787 2015-24390 Materials Processing Equipment Technical Advisory Committee, 57786 2015-24389 Technical Advisory Committee, 57786-57787 2015-24365 Interior Interior Department See

Fish and Wildlife Service

See

Indian Affairs Bureau

See

Land Management Bureau

See

Ocean Energy Management Bureau

Internal Revenue Internal Revenue Service RULES Reliance Standards for Making Good Faith Determinations, 57709-57717 2015-24346 International Trade Adm International Trade Administration NOTICES Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Certain Oil Country Tubular Goods from the People's Republic of China; Court Decision Not in Harmony with Final Results of Administrative Review, 57789-57790 2015-24327 Investigations; Determinations, Modifications, and Rulings, etc.: Silicomanganese from Australia, 57787-57789 2015-24449 Justice Department Justice Department See

Justice Programs Office

NOTICES Proposed Consent Decrees under the Clean Air Act, 57873-57874 2015-24401
Justice Programs Justice Programs Office NOTICES Meetings: Federal Advisory Committee on Juvenile Justice, 57874 2015-24427 Labor Department Labor Department See

Occupational Safety and Health Administration

NOTICES Establishing a Minimum Wage for Contractors, Notice of Rate Change in Effect as of January 1, 2016; Correction, 57874-57876 2015-24412 United States-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement: Determination Regarding Review of Submission #2015-01, 57877-57878 2015-24414
Land Land Management Bureau NOTICES Environmental Impact Statements; Availability, etc.: California Desert Conservation Area Plan, West Mojave Planning Area, Inyo, Kern, Los Angeles and San Bernardino Counties, 57862 2015-24437 Legal Legal Services Corporation NOTICES Meetings; Sunshine Act, 57879-57881 2015-24563 NASA National Aeronautics and Space Administration NOTICES Meetings: NASA Advisory Council; Science Committee; Astrophysics Subcommittee, 57881-57882 2015-24297 National Credit National Credit Union Administration NOTICES Meetings; Sunshine Act, 57882 2015-24600 National Highway National Highway Traffic Safety Administration NOTICES Petitions for Decisions of Inconsequential Noncompliance: PACCAR, Inc., 57911-57912 2015-24454 National Institute National Institutes of Health NOTICES Approvals of Start-Up Exclusive Evaluation Option License Agreements: Development of Diagnostic Tests and Kits for Detection of Pathological Angiogenesis in Cancer, 57832-57833 2015-24331 Meetings: Center for Scientific Review, 57833-57834 2015-24320 National Cancer Institute, 57834 2015-24321 National Institute on Aging, 57832 2015-24322 National Oceanic National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RULES Fisheries Off West Coast States: Modifications of the West Coast Commercial and Recreational Salmon Fisheries; Inseason Actions #30 Through #36, 57738-57740 2015-24442 Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions: Fishery Management Council Freedom of Information Act Requests, 57737-57738 2015-24364 NOTICES Meetings: Fisheries of the South Atlantic; South Atlantic Fishery Management Council, 57790 2015-24435 Western Pacific Fishery Management Council, 57790-57791 2015-24436 National Science National Science Foundation NOTICES Permits under the Antarctic Conservation Act, 57882-57883 2015-24308 Nuclear Regulatory Nuclear Regulatory Commission NOTICES Final Safety Analysis Reports, Emergency Preparedness Documents, and Fire Protection Documents, 57884-57885 2015-24301 Guidance: Chilled Water System, 57883-57884 2015-24306 Integrated Safety Analysis Standards for Acute Uranium Exposure of Workers, 57885-57886 2015-24315 License Amendment Applications: Northern States Power Co.—Minnesota; Prairie Island Nuclear Generating Plant, Units 1 and 2, 57885 2015-24311 Occupational Safety Health Adm Occupational Safety and Health Administration PROPOSED RULES Clarification of Employer's Continuing Obligation to Make and Maintain an Accurate Record of Each Recordable Injury and Illness; Extension of Comment Period, 57765-57766 2015-24319 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Lead in General Industry Standard, 57878-57879 2015-24345 Ocean Energy Management Ocean Energy Management Bureau NOTICES Environmental Impact Statements; Availability, etc.: Outer Continental Shelf, Alaska Region, Beaufort Sea Planning Area, Liberty Development and Production Plan, 57873 2015-24391 Wind Lease Sales: Atlantic Wind Lease Sale 5 for Commercial Leasing for Wind Power on the Outer Continental Shelf Offshore New Jersey, 57862-57872 2015-24392 Pension Benefit Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation RULES Multiemployer Plans; Electronic Filing Requirements; Correction, 57717 2015-24343 Personnel Personnel Management Office RULES Managing Senior Executive Performance, 57693-57698 2015-24405 Overtime Pay for Border Patrol Agents, 58094-58121 2015-24199 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Certification of Qualifying District of Columbia, 57887-57888 2015-24425 Reinstatement of Disability Annuity Previously Terminated Because of Restoration to Earning Capacity, 57886-57887 2015-24420 Rollover Election, Rollover Information, and Special Tax Notice Regarding Rollovers, 57888 2015-24419 Meetings: Federal Salary Council, 57887 2015-24416 Pipeline Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration NOTICES Delayed Applications, 57913-57914 2015-23368 Special Permit Applications: Hazardous Materials, 57912-57913 2015-23369 Hazardous Materials; Modifications, 57914-57915 2015-23364 Postal Regulatory Postal Regulatory Commission NOTICES New Postal Products, 57888-57890 2015-24294 2015-24295 2015-24299 2015-24303 Postal Service Postal Service NOTICES Product Changes: Parcel Select Negotiated Service Agreement, 57891 2015-24351 Priority Mail Negotiated Service Agreement, 2015-24352 57890-57891 2015-24353 2015-24354 Securities Securities and Exchange Commission RULES Removal of Certain References to Credit Ratings and Amendment to the Issuer Diversification Requirement in the Money Market Fund Rule, 58124-58155 2015-24015 NOTICES Applications: General Electric Co.and GE Capital International Funding Co., 57891-57893 2015-24445 Principal Exchange-Traded Funds, et al., 57893-57901 2015-24446 Meetings; Sunshine Act, 57901-57902 2015-24547 Small Business Small Business Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 57906-57907 2015-24366 Disaster Declarations: Kentucky, 57906 2015-24502 West Virginia; Amendment 1, 57907 2015-24498 Privacy Act; Computer Matching Agreement, 57902-57906 2015-24477 Surrender of License of Small Business Investment Company, 2015-24367 57906 2015-24368 Social Social Security Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 57907-57910 2015-24302 State Department State Department NOTICES Culturally Significant Objects Imported for Exhibition Determinations: Delacroix's Influence; The Rise of Modern Art from Cezanne to van Gogh, 57910 2015-24613 Culturally Significant Objects Imported for Exhibition: Frank Stella--A Retrospective, 57910-57911 2015-24457 Sotatsu--Making Waves, 57910 2015-24460 Transportation Department Transportation Department See

Federal Aviation Administration

See

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

See

Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration

NOTICES Meetings: Global Positioning System Adjacent Band Compatibility Assessment Workshop IV, 57915 2015-24415
Treasury Treasury Department See

Internal Revenue Service

Separate Parts In This Issue Part II Environmental Protection Agency, 57918-58012 2015-23166 Part III Environmental Protection Agency, 58014-58092 2015-23167 Part IV Personnel Management Office, 58094-58121 2015-24199 Part V Securities and Exchange Commission, 58124-58155 2015-24015 Part VI Interior Department, Fish and Wildlife Service, 58158-58163 2015-24162 Part VII Interior Department, Fish and Wildlife Service, 58166-58194 2015-24166 Reader Aids

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80 186 Friday, September 25, 2015 Rules and Regulations OFFICE OF PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT 5 CFR Parts 430 and 534 RIN 3206-AM48 Managing Senior Executive Performance AGENCY: U.S. Office of Personnel Management. ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is amending subpart C of part 430 of title 5, Code of Federal Regulations, to help agencies design performance appraisal systems for senior executives that support a consistent approach for managing senior executive performance, incorporate current OPM policies, and reorganize information for ease of reading. We are also amending part 534 to make technical corrections to the regulation on pay for senior level and scientific and professional positions.

DATES:

Effective October 26, 2015.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Nikki Johnson by telephone at (202) 606-8046 or by email at [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) issued proposed regulations and requested comments on December 10, 2014 (79 FR 73239). OPM received comments from one Federal agency, a private association for career federal executives (“the Association”), and one individual. We reviewed the public comments, considered them, and decided upon any revisions we concluded were appropriate in light of that consideration. We have summarized the comments below and also indicate how we disposed of them in the final regulations.

In addition to specific substantive comments, we received general comments about the proposed regulations as well as information contained in the supplementary information. For example, the Association supports the concept of a consistent appraisal approach and recognizes the additional clarification provided for the definitions of performance standards and performance requirements as being particularly helpful.

Furthermore, the Association recommends ensuring a consistent framework to promote transparency for SES performance management by limiting agency flexibility. The Association suggests OPM direct agencies to leverage and tailor the critical elements, based on the executive core qualifications (ECQ), to secure the desired flexibility instead of permitting flexibility regarding the implementation of a Governmentwide system. In response, OPM notes that 5 U.S.C. 4312(a), one of the statutory provisions governing performance appraisals for the SES, specifically states: “Each agency shall, in accordance with standards established by OPM, develop one or more performance appraisal systems. . . .” Therefore, we are regulating concepts of good performance management by providing system standards for agencies to use in designing their SES performance management systems. In addition, the basic SES performance management system incorporates these system standards and is available for agencies to adopt and adapt, still allowing agencies limited flexibility in system design.

The Association also recommends OPM codify the SES and Performance Management Office to ensure that office can provide oversight and guidance on SES performance management, as well as serve as a resource for agencies. OPM already has sufficient statutory (5 U.S.C. 4312(c)(1) and (3) and 4315) and regulatory authority (5 CFR subpart C being finalized here and including § 430.314) to fulfill its obligations, with or without a separate office bearing this title, and OPM does not believe it is prudent to bind future directors to any particular organizational scheme. In addition, it is already clear that OPM is committed to providing agencies guidance and support in designing and implementing their performance management systems.

An agency has concerns that the use of the word “rare” in the example of a performance standard in the supplementary information describing Level 5 performance might be interpreted as imposing a quota or limitation on the number of executives who can receive a Level 5 rating. OPM did not intend “rare, high quality performance” to be a quantitative descriptor, as a quota would be proscribed under 5 U.S.C. 4312(b)(2). Nor did OPM intend to imply that Level 5 performance was merely “high level” as all standards for executives should anticipate high level work and be designed to encourage excellence in performance. Rather, OPM intended to convey that, qualitatively, the standards for a Level 5 (“An outstanding level”) rating should be clearly differentiated from and exceed the standards set for Level 4 performance (“An exceeds fully successful level”).

We received four comments on planning and appraising performance. First, the Association suggests the proposed regulations would be strengthened by a discussion of how Technical Qualifications (TQs) could be incorporated, when applicable, in appraising performance. OPM believes that the use of OPM-validated executive competencies can provide the proper balance between leadership qualifications and actual executive results, are the most appropriate basis for appraising executive performance, and would allow for incorporating TQs. We have removed specific reference to the ECQs, and clarified that standards for performance management systems should use critical elements based on OPM-validated executive competencies accordingly.

Also, the Association recommends the regulations establish appropriate timelines for communicating performance plans and ratings. It also recommends the communication of appraisals, including ratings that have been increased, sustained, or lowered, be provided in writing. OPM agrees with making this an explicit requirement and we have revised § 430.308 to ensure agencies establish timelines for communicating performance plans, conducting appraisals, and assigning and communicating annual summary ratings. In addition, we have revised § 430.306(b) regarding performance plans and § 430.309(e)(4) regarding the annual summary rating to ensure they are communicated to the executive in writing in a timely manner.

In addition, the Association expresses concerns over the manner in which customer and employee perspectives will be collected and assessed and how those assessments will affect the performance appraisal of executives. The Association wants senior executives to be made aware of the assessment methods, and believes those methods must ensure a senior executive is assessed on things within the individual's control. OPM has included Governmentwide performance requirements for employee perspective into the Leading People critical element of the basic SES appraisal system executive performance plan template and for customer perspective in the Building Coalitions critical element. Beyond that, agencies are responsible for developing additional agency-specific requirements. In doing so, agencies should be clear on how the requirements will be measured and make executives aware of those assessment methods. They must make sure that such requirements are within the area of responsibility and control of the executive. We have clarified the language in several places in the regulation to include this concept.

Finally, an individual recommends OPM should consider providing a broader authority to develop alternative review procedures to cover other cases where it might be difficult or impossible to accommodate higher level review within the agency. For example, what would happen when the only person who can provide higher level review is also the final rater. The individual also questions the meaning of agency head in the proposed § 430.309(e)(2)(iii) and suggests OPM should provide a definition of agency for clarity and consistency. We have revised § 430.309(e)(2) to provide a broader authority for agencies to develop alternative review procedures when it is difficult or impossible to accommodate higher level review within the agency. We have also clarified that the review should be made by an official at a higher level who did not participate in determining the executive's initial summary rating. In other words, someone at a higher level who can provide an objective review who was not directly involved in the initial summary rating may serve as a higher-level official for this purpose. For example, a reviewing official may not provide a higher-level review because of their involvement in the process. It is not OPM's intention for agencies to exclude individuals with knowledge of the executive's performance from providing input. We also have revised § 430.303 to add a definition for agency.

Lastly, we received two comments on the oversight official. An agency suggests clarification of the responsibilities of the oversight official. It questions whether the responsibilities of the oversight official could be shared between two positions, such as one individual issuing performance appraisal guidelines and overseeing the performance management system and another individual issuing the organizational assessments. These regulations address the responsibilities of the oversight official with regard to providing oversight of the performance management system and issuing performance appraisal guidelines and do not make the oversight official responsible for organizational assessments. Therefore, it is up to the agency whether two separate positions have the responsibilities of these two functions.

The Association recommends the oversight official also oversee adherence to timelines for communicating performance plans and ratings, as well as ensure agency leaders and political appointees are meeting their responsibilities and obligations in support of implementation of the SES performance management system. We have revised § 430.308 to ensure agencies establish timelines for completing and communicating performance plans and ratings, and are continuing to provide agencies the flexibility to determine which official(s) will oversee adherence to these timelines and the proper exercise of upper management responsibilities regarding performance management.

In the interest of clarifying the regulatory content, OPM is making a few additional changes. Wherever we refer to written communications, we include the ability to accomplish these through the use of automated systems. In § 430.305(a)(7), we have revised the order of the wording to conform with the other entries in paragraph (a). In § 430.308(d)(3), we include language to clarify that guidelines must be issued before completion of the initial summary ratings. In § 430.310(b), we clarify that appraisal information from details and such must be provided to the executive.

Pay for Senior Level and Scientific and Professional Positions

On March 5, 2014, OPM published final regulations (79 FR 12353) on pay for senior level and scientific and professional positions to implement Section 2 of the Senior Professional Performance Act of 2008 (Pub. L. 110-372, October 8, 2008). We find that paragraphs (c)(1)(ii) and (c)(1)(iii) of 5 CFR 534.505 of these regulations contain erroneous cross-references that we are correcting. We also are revising the salary rates used in the example to reflect the most current rates at the time of publication of this correction.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

I certify that these regulations will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities, because they will apply only to Federal agencies and employees.

E.O. 12866, Regulatory Review

This rule has not been reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget in accordance with E.O. 12866.

List of Subjects in 5 CFR Parts 430

Government employees.

U.S. Office of Personnel Management. Beth F. Cobert, Acting Director.

Accordingly, OPM is amending 5 CFR parts 430 and 534 as follows:

PART 430—PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT 1. The authority citation for part 430 continues to read as follows: Authority:

5 U.S.C. chapter 43 and 5307(d).

2. Revise subpart C to read as follows: Subpart C—Managing Senior Executive Performance Sec. 430.301 General. 430.302 Coverage. 430.303 Definitions. 430.304 SES performance management systems. 430.305 System standards for SES performance management systems. 430.306 Planning and communicating performance. 430.307 Monitoring performance. 430.308 Appraising performance. 430.309 Rating performance. 430.310 Details and job changes. 430.311 Performance Review Boards (PRBs). 430.312 Using performance results. 430.313 Training and evaluation. 430.314 OPM review of agency systems. Subpart C—Managing Senior Executive Performance
§ 430.301 General.

(a) Statutory authority. Chapter 43 of title 5, United States Code, provides for the establishment of Senior Executive Service (SES) performance appraisal systems and appraisal of senior executive performance. This subpart prescribes regulations for managing SES performance to implement the statutory provisions at 5 U.S.C. 4311-4315.

(b) Purpose. In order to improve the overall performance of Government, agencies must establish performance management systems that hold senior executives accountable (within their assigned areas of responsibility and control) for their individual performance and for organizational performance by—

(1) Encouraging excellence in senior executive performance;

(2) Aligning executive performance plans with the results-oriented goals required by the Government Performance and Results Act Modernization Act of 2010 (GPRAMA) or other strategic planning initiatives;

(3) Setting and communicating individual and organizational goals and expectations that clearly fall within the executive's area of responsibility and control;

(4) Reporting on the success of meeting organizational goals (including any factors that may have impacted success);

(5) Systematically appraising senior executive performance using measures that balance organizational results with customer and employee perspectives, and other perspectives as appropriate; and

(6) Using performance appraisals as a basis for pay, awards, development, retention, removal, and other personnel decisions.

(c) Savings provision. Agencies without OPM approval to use the basic SES appraisal system issued by U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and the Office of Management and Budget on January 4, 2012, must design, obtain OPM approval for, and implement systems conforming to the requirements of this subpart no later than one year after October 26, 2015. No provision of this subpart will affect any administrative proceedings related to any action initiated under a provision of this chapter before October 26, 2015.

§ 430.302 Coverage.

This subpart applies to—

(a) All senior executives covered by subchapter II of chapter 31 of title 5, United States Code; and

(b) Agencies as defined in § 430.303.

§ 430.303 Definitions.

In this subpart—

Agency means an agency as that term is defined in 5 U.S.C. 3132(a)(1) and an Office of Inspector General, which is a separate agency for all provisions of the Senior Executive Service under the Inspector General Act of 1978 (5 U.S.C. App 6(d)).

Annual summary rating means the overall rating level that an appointing authority assigns at the end of the appraisal period after considering (1) the initial summary rating, (2) any input from the executive or a higher level review, and (3) the applicable Performance Review Board's recommendations. This is the official final rating for the appraisal period.

Appointing authority means the department or agency head, or other official with authority to make appointments in the Senior Executive Service (SES).

Appraisal period means the established period of time for which a senior executive's performance will be appraised and rated.

Critical element means a key component of an executive's work that contributes to organizational goals and results and is so important that unsatisfactory performance of the element would make the executive's overall job performance unsatisfactory.

Initial summary rating means an overall rating level the supervisor derives, from appraising the senior executive's performance during the appraisal period in relation to the critical elements and performance standards and requirements, and forwards to the Performance Review Board.

Oversight official means the agency head or the individual specifically designated by the agency head who provides oversight of the performance management system and issues performance appraisal guidelines.

Performance means the accomplishment of the work described in the senior executive's performance plan.

Performance appraisal means the review and evaluation of a senior executive's performance against critical elements and performance standards and requirements.

Performance management system means the framework of policies and practices that an agency establishes under subchapter II of chapter 43 of title 5, United States Code, subpart A, and this subpart for planning, monitoring, developing, evaluating, and rewarding both individual and organizational performance and for using resulting performance information in making personnel decisions.

Performance requirement means a description of what a senior executive must accomplish, or the competencies demonstrated, for a critical element. A performance requirement establishes the criteria to be met to be rated at a specific level of performance and generally includes quality, quantity, timeliness, cost savings, manner of performance, or other factors.

Performance standard means a normative description of a single level of performance within five such described levels of performance ranging from unsatisfactory performance to outstanding performance. Performance standards provide the benchmarks for developing performance requirements against which actual performance will be assessed.

Progress review means a review of the senior executive's progress in meeting the performance requirements. A progress review is not a performance rating.

Senior executive performance plan means the written critical elements and performance requirements against which performance will be evaluated during the appraisal period by applying the established performance standards. The plan includes all critical elements, performance standards, and performance requirements, including any specific goals, targets, or other measures established for the senior executive.

Strategic planning initiatives means agency strategic plans as required by the GPRA Modernization Act of 2010, annual performance plans, organizational work plans, and other related initiatives.

System standards means the OPM-established requirements for performance management systems.

§ 430.304 SES performance management systems.

(a) To encourage excellence in senior executive performance, each agency must develop and administer one or more performance management systems for its senior executives in accordance with the system standards established in § 430.305.

(b) Performance management systems must provide for—

(1) Identifying executives covered by the system;

(2) Monitoring progress in accomplishing critical elements and performance requirements and conducting progress reviews at least once during the appraisal period, including informing executives on how well they are performing;

(3) Establishing an official performance appraisal period for which an annual summary rating must be prepared;

(4) Establishing a minimum appraisal period of at least 90 days;

(5) Ending the appraisal period at any time after the minimum appraisal period is completed, but only if the agency determines there is an adequate basis on which to appraise and rate the senior executive's performance and the shortened appraisal period promotes effectiveness; and

(6) Establishing criteria and procedures to address performance of senior executives who are on detail, temporarily reassigned, or transferred as described at § 430.312(c)(1), and for other special circumstances established by the agency.

§ 430.305 System standards for SES performance management systems.

(a) Each agency performance management system must incorporate the following system standards:

(1) Use critical elements based on OPM-validated executive competencies to evaluate executive leadership and results, including the quality of the executive's performance;

(2) Align performance requirements with agency mission and strategic planning initiatives;

(3) Define performance standards for each of the summary rating performance levels, which also may be used for the individual elements or performance requirements being appraised;

(4) Appraise each senior executive's performance at least annually against performance requirements based on established performance standards and other measures;

(5) Derive an annual summary rating through a mathematical method that ensures executives' performance aligns with level descriptors contained in performance standards that clearly differentiate levels above fully successful, while prohibiting a forced distribution of rating levels for senior executives;

(6) Establish five summary performance levels as follows:

(i) An outstanding level;

(ii) An exceeds fully successful level;

(iii) A fully successful level;

(iv) A minimally satisfactory level; and

(v) An unsatisfactory level;

(7) Include equivalency statements in the system description for agency-specific terms for the five summary performance levels aligning them with the five performance levels required in § 430.305(a)(6); and

(8) Use performance appraisals as a basis to adjust pay, reward, retain, and develop senior executives or make other personnel decisions, including removals as specified in § 430.312.

(b) An agency may develop its own performance management system for senior executives in accordance with the requirements of this section.

(c) OPM may establish, and refine as needed, a basic performance management system incorporating all requirements of this section, which agencies may adopt, with limited adaptation, for performance management of its senior executives.

§ 430.306 Planning and communicating performance.

(a) Each senior executive must have a performance plan that describes the individual and organizational expectations for the appraisal period that clearly fall within the senior executive's area of responsibility and control.

(b) Supervisors must develop performance plans in consultation with senior executives and communicate the plans to them in writing, including through the use of automated systems, on or before the beginning of the appraisal period.

(c) A senior executive performance plan must include—

(1) Critical elements. Critical elements must reflect individual performance results or competencies as well as organizational performance priorities within each executive's respective area of responsibility and control, and be based on OPM-validated executive competencies.

(2) Performance standards. Performance plans must include the performance standards describing each level of performance at which a senior executive's performance can be appraised. Performance standards describe the general expectations that must be met to be rated at each level of performance and provide the benchmarks for developing performance requirements.

(3) Performance requirements. At a minimum, performance requirements must describe expected accomplishments or demonstrated competencies for fully successful performance by the executive. An agency may establish performance requirements associated with other levels of performance as well. These performance requirements must align with agency mission and strategic planning initiatives. Performance requirements must contain measures of the quality, quantity, timeliness, cost savings, or manner of performance, as appropriate, expected for the applicable level of performance.

(d) Agencies may require a review of senior executive performance plans at the beginning of the appraisal period to ensure consistency of agency-specific performance requirements. Such reviews may be performed by the Performance Review Board (PRB) or another body of the agency's choosing.

§ 430.307 Monitoring performance.

Supervisors must monitor each senior executive's performance throughout the appraisal period and hold at least one progress review. At a minimum, supervisors must inform senior executives during the progress review about how well they are performing with regard to their performance plan. Supervisors must provide advice and assistance to senior executives on how to improve their performance. Supervisors and senior executives may also discuss available development opportunities for the senior executive.

§ 430.308 Appraising performance.

(a) Agencies must establish appropriate timelines for communicating performance plans, conducting appraisals, and assigning and communicating annual summary ratings.

(b) At least annually, agencies must appraise each senior executive's performance in writing, including through the use of automated systems, and assign an annual summary rating at the end of the appraisal period.

(c) Agencies must appraise a senior executive's performance on the critical elements and performance requirements in the senior executive's performance plan.

(d) Agencies must base appraisals of senior executive performance on both individual and organizational performance as it applies to the senior executive's area of responsibility and control, taking into account factors such as—

(1) Results achieved in accordance with agency mission and strategic planning initiatives;

(2) Overall quality of performance rendered by the executive,

(3) Performance appraisal guidelines that must be based upon assessments of the agency's performance and are provided by the oversight official to senior executives, rating and reviewing officials, PRB members, and appointing authorities at the conclusion of the appraisal period and before completion of the initial summary ratings;

(4) Customer perspectives;

(5) Employee perspectives;

(6) The effectiveness, productivity, and performance results of the employees for whom the senior executive is responsible;

(7) Leadership effectiveness in promoting diversity, inclusion and engagement as set forth, in part, under section 7201 of title 5, United States Code; and

(8) Compliance with the merit system principles set forth under section 2301 of title 5, United States Code.

§ 430.309 Rating performance.

(a) When rating senior executive performance, each agency must—

(1) Comply with the requirements of this section, and

(2) Establish a PRB as described at § 430.311.

(b) Each performance management system must provide that an appraisal and rating for a career appointee's performance may not be made within 120 days after the beginning of a new President's term.

(c) When an agency cannot prepare an annual summary rating at the end of the appraisal period because the senior executive has not completed the minimum appraisal period or for other reasons, the agency must extend the executive's appraisal period. Once the appropriate conditions are met, the agency will then prepare the annual summary rating.

(d) Senior executive performance appraisals and ratings are not appealable.

(e) Procedures for rating senior executives must provide for the following:

(1) Initial summary rating. The supervisor must develop an initial summary rating of the senior executive's performance, in writing, including through the use of automated systems, and share that rating with the senior executive. The senior executive may respond in writing.

(2) Higher-level review (HLR). A senior executive may ask for a higher-level official to review the initial summary rating before the rating is given to the PRB. The agency must provide each senior executive an opportunity for review of the initial summary rating by an employee, or (with the consent of the senior executive) a commissioned officer in the uniformed services on active duty in the agency, in a higher level in the agency.

(i) A single review by an official at a higher level who did not participate in determining the executive's initial summary rating will satisfy this requirement. An official providing HLR may not change the initial summary rating but may recommend a different rating to the PRB. HLR may be provided by an official who is at a higher level in the agency than the appointing authority who will approve the final rating under paragraph (e)(4) of this section.

(ii) When an agency cannot provide review by a higher-level official for an executive who receives an initial summary rating from the agency head because no such official exists in the agency, the agency must offer an alternative review as it determines appropriate, except that the review may not be provided by a member of the PRB or an official who participated in determining the initial summary rating.

(iii) If a senior executive declines review by agency-designated higher-level officials, the agency may offer an alternative review but it not obligated to do so. The agency must document the executive's declination of the HLR opportunity provided by the agency before offering an alternative review.

(iv) Copies of findings and recommendations of the HLR official or the official performing an alternative review under paragraph (e)(2)(ii) through (iii) of this section must be given to the senior executive, the supervisor, and the PRB.

(3) PRB review. The PRB must receive and review the initial summary rating, the senior executive's response to the initial rating if made, and findings and recommendations of any HLR or any alternative review under paragraph (e)(2) of this section before making recommendations to the appointing authority, as provided in § 430.311.

(4) Annual summary rating. The appointing authority must assign the annual summary rating of the senior executive's performance after considering the applicable PRB's recommendations. This rating is the official final rating for the appraisal period and must be communicated to the executive in writing, including through the use of automated systems, in accordance with the timelines developed under § 430.308(a).

(5) Shortened appraisal periods. The procedures of this section apply whenever an agency terminates an appraisal period under § 430.304(b)(5).

§ 430.310 Details and job changes.

(a) When a senior executive is detailed or temporarily reassigned for 120 days or longer, the gaining organization must set performance goals and requirements for the detail or temporary assignment. The gaining organization must appraise the senior executive's performance in writing, including through the use of automated systems, and this appraisal must be considered when deriving the initial summary rating.

(b) When a senior executive is reassigned or transferred to another agency after completing the minimum appraisal period, the supervisor must appraise the executive's performance in writing, including through the use of automated systems, before the executive leaves and provide this information to the executive.

(c) The most recent annual summary rating and any subsequent appraisals must be transferred to the gaining agency or organization. The gaining supervisor must consider the rating and appraisals when deriving the initial summary rating at the end of the appraisal period.

§ 430.311 Performance Review Boards (PRBs).

Each agency must establish one or more PRBs to make recommendations to the appointing authority on the performance of its senior executives.

(a) Membership. (1) Each PRB must have three or more members who are appointed by the agency head, or by another official or group acting on behalf of the agency head. Agency heads are encouraged to consider diversity and inclusion in establishing their PRBs.

(2) PRB members must be appointed in a way that assures consistency, stability, and objectivity in SES performance appraisal.

(3) When appraising a career appointee's performance or recommending a career appointee for a performance-based pay adjustment or performance award, more than one-half of the PRB's members must be SES career appointees.

(4) The agency must publish notice of PRB appointments in the Federal Register before service begins.

(b) Functions. (1) Each PRB must consider agency performance as communicated by the oversight official through the performance appraisal guidelines when reviewing and evaluating the initial summary rating, any senior executive's response, and any higher-level official's findings and recommendations on the initial summary rating or the results of an alternative review. The PRB may conduct any further review needed to make its recommendations. The PRB may not review an initial summary rating to which the executive has not been given the opportunity to respond in writing, including through the use of automated systems.

(2) The PRB must make a written recommendation, including through the use of automated systems, to the appointing authority about each senior executive's annual summary rating, performance-based pay adjustment, and performance award.

(3) PRB members may not take part in any PRB deliberations involving their own appraisals, performance-based pay adjustments, and performance awards.

§ 430.312 Using performance results.

(a) Agencies must use performance appraisals as a basis for adjusting pay, granting awards, retaining senior executives, and making other personnel decisions. Performance appraisals also will be a factor in assessing a senior executive's continuing development needs.

(b) Agencies are required to provide appropriate incentives and recognition (including pay adjustments and performance awards under part 534, subpart D) for excellence in performance.

(c) A career executive may be removed from the SES for performance reasons, subject to the provisions of part 359, subpart E, as follows:

(1) An executive who receives an unsatisfactory annual summary rating must be reassigned or transferred within the SES, or removed from the SES;

(2) An executive who receives two unsatisfactory annual summary ratings in any 5-year period must be removed from the SES; and

(3) An executive who receives less than a fully successful annual summary rating twice in any 3-year period must be removed from the SES.

§ 430.313 Training and evaluation.

(a) To assure effective implementation of agency performance management systems, agencies must provide appropriate information and training to agency leadership, supervisors, and senior executives on performance management, including planning and appraising performance.

(b) Agencies must periodically evaluate the effectiveness of their performance management system(s) and implement improvements as needed. Evaluations must provide for both assessment of effectiveness and compliance with relevant laws, OPM regulations, and OPM performance management policy.

(c) Agencies must maintain all performance-related records for no fewer than 5 years from the date the annual summary rating is issued, as required in 5 CFR 293.404(b)(1).

§ 430.314 OPM review of agency systems.

(a) Agencies must submit proposed SES performance management systems to OPM for approval. Agency systems must address the system standards and requirements specified in this subpart.

(b) OPM will review agency systems for compliance with the requirements of law, OPM regulations, and OPM performance management policy, including the system standards specified at § 430.305.

(c) If OPM finds that an agency system does not meet the requirements and intent of subchapter II of chapter 43 of title 5, United States Code, or of this subpart, OPM will identify the requirements that were not met and direct the agency to take corrective action, and the agency must comply.

PART 534—PAY UNDER OTHER SYSTEMS 3. The authority citation for part 534 continues to read as follows: Authority:

5 U.S.C. 1104, 3161(d), 5307, 5351, 5352, 5353, 5376, 5382, 5383, 5384, 5385, 5541, 5550a, sec. 1125 of the National Defense Authorization Act for FY 2004, Pub. L. 108-136, 117 Stat. 1638 (5 U.S.C. 5304, 5382, 5383, 7302; 18 U.S.C. 207); and sec. 2 of Pub. L. 110-372, 122 Stat. 4043 (5 U.S.C. 5304, 5307, 5376).

4. In § 534.505, revise paragraph (c)(1) to read as follows:
§ 534.505 Written Procedures.

(c) * * *

(1) Any pay-setting action under § 534.506 or any pay increase under § 534.507 that results in a rate of basic pay that is within the highest 10 percent of the applicable rate range under § 534.504. A rate of basic pay equal to or above the amount derived using the following rules is considered to be within the highest 10 percent of the applicable pay range (in 2015, $177,166 or above if the applicable system is certified, or $164,026 or above if the applicable system is not certified or performance appraisal does not apply):

(i) Subtract the minimum rate of basic pay from the maximum rate of basic pay for the applicable rate range under § 534.504 (in 2015, $183,300−$121,956 = $61,344 if the applicable system is certified, or $168,700−$121,956 = $46,744 if the applicable system is not certified or performance appraisal does not apply);

(ii) Multiply the amount derived in paragraph (c)(1)(i) of this section by 0.10 (in 2015, $61,344 − 0.10 = $6,134 if the applicable system is certified, or $46,744 − 0.10 = $4,674 if the applicable system is not certified or performance appraisal does not apply); and

(iii) Subtract the amount derived in paragraph (c)(1)(ii) of this section from the maximum rate of basic pay applicable under § 534.504 (in 2015, $183,300−$6,134 = $177,166 if the applicable system is certified, or $168,700−$4,674 = $164,026 if the applicable system is not certified or performance appraisal does not apply);

[FR Doc. 2015-24405 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6325-39-P
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Agricultural Marketing Service 7 CFR Part 1221 [AMS-LPS-15-0055] Sorghum Promotion, Research, and Information Program AGENCY:

Agricultural Marketing Service; USDA.

ACTION:

Announcement of the continuation of the sorghum promotion.

SUMMARY:

The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is announcing that sorghum producers voting in a national referendum from March 23, 2015, through April 21, 2015, have approved the continuation of the Sorghum Promotion, Research, and Information Order (Order).

DATES:

Effective September 25, 2015.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Kenneth R. Payne, Director, Research and Promotion Division; Livestock, Poultry, and Seed Program, AMS, USDA, Room 2608-S; 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250-0251; Telephone 202/720-5705; Fax 202/720-1125; or email to [email protected], or Craig Shackelford, Marketing Specialist; Research and Promotion Division; Livestock, Poultry, and Seed Program, AMS, USDA; 22 Jamesport Lane; White, GA 30184; Telephone: (470) 315-4246; or email to [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Pursuant to the Commodity Promotion, Research, and Information Act of 1996 (Act)(7 U.S.C. 7411-7425), the Department of Agriculture conducted a referendum from March 23, 2015, through April 21, 2015, among eligible sorghum producers and importers to determine if the Order would continue to be effective. A final rule was published in the November 18, 2010, Federal Register (75 FR 70573) outlining the procedures for conducting the referendum.

Of the 1,202 valid ballots cast, 1,160 or 96.5 percent favored the program and 42 or 3.5 percent opposed continuing the program. For the program to continue, it must have been approved by at least a majority of those eligible persons voting for approval who were engaged in the production or importation of sorghum during the period January 1, 2011, through December 31, 2014.

Therefore, based on the referendum results, the Secretary of Agriculture has determined that the required majority of eligible voters who voted in the nationwide referendum from March 23, 2015, through April 21, 2015, voted to continue the Order. As a result, the Sorghum Checkoff Program will continue to be funded by a mandatory assessment on producers and importers at the rate of 0.6 percent of net market value of grain sorghum and 0.35 percent of net market value for sorghum forage, sorghum hay, sorghum haylage, sorghum billets, and sorghum silage. Imports of such products will also be assessed, although, very limited imports exist at this time.

In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35), the information collection requirements have been approved under OMB number 0581-0093.

State Referendum Results [March 23, 2015, through April 21, 2015] State Yes
  • votes
  • No
  • votes
  • Total
  • eligible
  • votes
  • Alabama 0 0 0 Alaska 0 0 0 Arizona 0 0 0 Arkansas 41 0 41 California 0 0 0 Colorado 49 2 51 Connecticut 0 0 0 Delaware 0 0 0 Florida 0 0 0 Georgia 0 0 0 Hawaii 0 0 0 Idaho 0 0 0 Illinois 11 2 13 Indiana 0 0 0 Iowa 2 0 2 Kansas 281 14 295 Kentucky 2 0 2 Louisiana 34 0 34 Maine 0 0 0 Maryland 3 0 3 Massachusetts 0 0 0 Michigan 0 0 0 Minnesota 0 0 0 Mississippi 1 0 1 Missouri 4 0 4 Montana 0 0 0 Nebraska 27 0 27 Nevada 0 0 0 New Hampshire 0 0 0 New Jersey 0 0 0 New Mexico 27 1 28 New York 0 0 0 North Carolina 4 0 4 North Dakota 0 0 0 Ohio 0 0 0 Oklahoma 57 1 58 Oregon 0 0 0 Pennsylvania 0 0 0 Rhode Island 0 0 0 South Carolina 1 0 1 South Dakota 34 0 34 Tennessee 0 0 0 Texas 580 22 602 Utah 0 0 0 Vermont 0 0 0 Virginia 2 0 2 Washington 0 0 0 West Virginia 0 0 0 Wisconsin 0 0 0 Wyoming 0 0 0 Total 1,160 42 1,202
    Authority:

    7 U.S.C. 7411-7425.

    Dated: September 18, 2015. Rex A. Barnes, Associated Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24223 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-02-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2015-3057; Airspace Docket No. 15-ASO-9] Amendment of Class E Airspace; Mackall AAF, NC AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Final rule; technical amendment.

    SUMMARY:

    This action amends Class E Airspace at Mackall Army Airfield (AAF), NC, bringing current the regulatory text under the airspace designation for Mackall AAF, NC, by replacing the acronym “NCB” with “NDB”. This is an administrative change to coincide with the FAA's aeronautical database.

    DATES:

    Effective 0901 UTC, December 10, 2015. The Director of the Federal Register approves this incorporation by reference action under title 1, Code of Federal Regulations, part 51, subject to the annual revision of FAA Order 7400.9 and publication of conforming amendments.

    ADDRESSES:

    FAA Order 7400.9Z, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, and subsequent amendments can be viewed online at http://www.faa.gov/airtraffic/publications/. 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.

    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 CONTACT:

    John Fornito, Operations Support Group, Eastern Service Center, Federal Aviation Administration, P.O. Box 20636, Atlanta, Georgia 30320; telephone (404) 305-6364.

    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 amends Class E airspace at Mackall AAF, NC.

    History

    In a review of the airspace, the FAA found the airspace description for Mackall AAF, NC, as published in FAA Order 7400.9Z, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, does not match the FAA's charting information. This administrative change coincides with the FAA's aeronautical database for Class E Airspace Designated as an Extension to a Class D Surface Area.

    Class E airspace designations are published in paragraphs 6004 of FAA Order 7400.9Z dated August 6, 2015, and effective September 15, 2015, which is incorporated by reference in 14 CFR part 71.1. The Class E airspace designations listed in this document will be published subsequently in the Order.

    Availability and Summary of Documents for Incorporation by Reference

    This document amends FAA Order 7400.9Z, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 6, 2015, and effective September 15, 2015. FAA Order 7400.9Z is publicly available as listed in the ADDRESSES section of this final rule. FAA Order 7400.9Z lists Class A, B, C, D, and E airspace areas, air traffic service routes, and reporting points.

    The Rule

    This action amends Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) Part 71 by replacing the acronym “NCB” with “NDB” in the regulatory text of the Class E airspace designated as an extension to Class D at Mackall AAF, NC. This is an administrative change merely amending the description for Mackall AAF, NC, to be in concert with the FAAs aeronautical database, and does not affect the boundaries, or operating requirements of the airspace, therefore, notice and public procedure under 5 U.S.C. 553(b) are unnecessary.

    Regulatory Notices and Analyses

    The FAA has determined that this regulation only involves an established body of technical regulations for which frequent and routine amendments are necessary to keep them operationally current. Therefore, this 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 only affects air traffic procedures and air navigation, it is certified that this rule, when promulgated, does not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

    The FAA's authority to issue rules regarding aviation safety is found in Title 49 of the U.S. Code. Subtitle 1, 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 further clarifies the description of controlled airspace at Mackall AAF, NC.

    Environmental Review

    The FAA has determined that this action qualifies for categorical exclusion under the National Environmental Policy Act in accordance with FAA Order 1050.1E, “Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures,” paragraph 311a. This airspace action is not expected to cause any potentially significant environmental impacts, and no extraordinary circumstances exist that warrant preparation of an environmental assessment.

    Lists of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 71

    Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (Air).

    Adoption of the Amendment

    In consideration of the foregoing, the Federal Aviation Administration amends 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 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 7400.9Z, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 6, 2015, effective September 15, 2015, is amended as follows: Paragraph 6004 Class E Airspace Designated as an Extension to a Class D Surface Area. ASO NC E4 Mackall AAF, NC [Amended] Mackall AAF, NC (Lat. 35°02'12” N., long. 79°29'51” W.) Mackall NDB (Lat. 35°01'41” N., long. 79°29'08” W.)

    That airspace extending upward from the surface within 3 miles each side of the 295° bearing from the Mackall NDB, extending from the 4.2-mile radius of Mackall AAF to 7 miles northwest of the NDB. This Class E airspace area is effective during the specific dates and times established in advance by a Notice to Airmen. The effective date and time will thereafter be continuously published in the Airport/Facility Directory.

    Issued in College Park, Georgia, on September 16, 2015. Jim Dickinson, Acting Manager, Operations Support Group, Eastern Service Center, Air Traffic Organization.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24152 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2012-1210; Airspace Docket No. 12-ASO-42] Establishment of Class E Airspace; Poplarville-Pearl River County Airport, MS AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    This action establishes Class E Airspace at Poplarville, MS. to accommodate new Area Navigation (RNAV) Global Positioning System (GPS) Standard Instrument Approach Procedures (SIAPs) serving Poplarville-Pearl River County Airport. Controlled airspace is necessary for the safety and management of instrument flight rules (IFR) operations at the airport. The FAA found that Class E airspace already exists for another airport in Poplarville, MS, and, therefore, is changing the title and airspace designation in this final rule to include the airport name. Also, a minor adjustment is made to the geographic coordinates of the airport.

    DATES:

    Effective 0901 UTC, December 10, 2015. The Director of the Federal Register approves this incorporation by reference action under title 1, Code of Federal Regulations, part 51, subject to the annual revision of FAA Order 7400.9 and publication of conforming amendments.

    ADDRESSES:

    FAA Order 7400.9Z, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, and subsequent amendments can be viewed on line at http://www.faa.gov/airtraffic/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 ATC Regulations Group, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 29591; telephone: 202-267-8783.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    John Fornito, Operations Support Group, Eastern Service Center, Federal Aviation Administration, P.O. Box 20636, Atlanta, Georgia 30320; telephone (404) 305-6364.

    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 establishes Class E airspace at Poplarville-Pearl River County Airport, Poplarville, MS.

    History

    On June 22, 2015, the FAA published in the Federal Register a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to establish Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Poplarville-Pearl River County Airport, Poplarville, MS. (80 FR 35601). Interested parties were invited to participate in this rulemaking effort by submitting written comments on the proposal to the FAA. No comments were received. Subsequent to publication, the FAA found the airport designation Poplarville, MS, is already being used for another airport, and, therefore, has changed the title and designation to Poplarville-Pearl River County Airport, Poplarville, MS. The geographic coordinates are also adjusted. Except for editorial changes, and the changes noted above, this rule is the same as published in the NPRM.

    Class E airspace designations are published in paragraph 6005 of FAA Order 7400.9Z dated August 6, 2015, and effective September 15, 2015, 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.

    Availability and Summary of Documents for Incorporation by Reference

    This document amends FAA Order 7400.9Z, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 6, 2015, and effective September 15, 2015. FAA Order 7400.9Z is publicly available as listed in the ADDRESSES section of this proposed rule. FAA Order 7400.9Z lists Class A, B, C, D, and E airspace areas, air traffic service routes, and reporting points.

    The Rule

    This amendment to Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 71 establishes Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.8-mile radius of Poplarville-Pearl River County Airport, Poplarville, MS, providing the controlled airspace required to support the new RNAV (GPS) standard instrument approach procedures for Poplarville-Pearl River County Airport. The title of this rule and the airspace designation is changed from Poplarville, MS, to Poplarville-Pearl River County Airport, MS, and the geographic coordinates of the airport are adjusted to be in concert with the FAAs aeronautical database.

    Class E airspace designations are published in Paragraph 6005 of FAA Order 7400.9Z, dated August 6, 2015, and effective September 15, 2015, which is incorporated by reference in 14 CFR 71.1. The Class E airspace designation listed in this document will be published subsequently in the Order.

    Regulatory Notices and Analyses

    The FAA has determined that this regulation only involves an established body of technical regulations for which frequent and routine amendments are necessary to keep them operationally current, is non-controversial and unlikely to result in adverse or negative comments. It, therefore, (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 only affects air traffic procedures and air navigation, it is certified that this rule, when promulgated, does not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

    Environmental Review

    The FAA has determined that this action qualifies for categorical exclusion under the National Environmental Policy Act in accordance with FAA Order 1050.1E, “Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures,” paragraph 311a. This airspace action is not expected to cause any potentially significant environmental impacts, and no extraordinary circumstances exist that warrant preparation of an environmental assessment.

    Lists of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 71

    Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (Air).

    Adoption of the Amendment

    In consideration of the foregoing, the Federal Aviation Administration amends 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 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 7400.9Z, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 6, 2015, effective September 15, 2015, is amended as follows: Paragraph 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward From 700 Feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth ASO MS E5 Poplarville-Pearl River County Airport, MS [New] Poplarville-Pearl River County Airport, MS (Lat. 30°47′12″ N., long. 89°30′16″ W.)

    That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.8-mile radius of Poplarville-Pearl River County Airport.

    Issued in College Park, Georgia, on September 16, 2015. Jim Dickinson, Acting Manager, Operations Support Group, Eastern Service Center, Operations Support Group.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24153 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 193 [Docket No.: FAA-2014-0142] RIN 2120-AA66 Federal Contract Tower Safety Action Program (SAFER-FCT) and Air Traffic Safety Action Program for Engineers & Architects, Staff Support Specialists, Aviation Technical System Specialists (Series 2186) and Flight Procedures Team (ATSAP-X) AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notice of Order Designating Information as Protected from Disclosure; No comments received.

    SUMMARY:

    This action affirms the order published in the Federal Register on April 3, 2015, regarding the application of Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) Part 193, Federal Contract Tower SAFER-FCT Program and the Air Traffic Organization Engineers and Architects, Staff Support Specialist (Series 2186) and Flight Procedures Team (hereinafter “Region X”) ATSAP-X Program. The Notice proposed that safety information provided to the FAA under the SAFER-FCT and ATSAP-X programs be designated by an FAA Order as protected from public disclosure in accordance with the provisions of 14 CFR part 193, Protection of Voluntarily Submitted Information. The designation is intended to encourage persons to voluntarily provide information to the FAA under the SAFER-FCT and ATSAP-X, so the FAA can learn about and address aviation safety hazards and implement, as appropriate corrective measures for events or safety issues.

    DATES:

    Effective date: September 25, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    For information on where to obtain copies of documents and other information related to this action, see “How to Obtain Additional Information” in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this notice.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For questions concerning this action, contact Ms. Coleen Hawrysko, Group Manager, Air Traffic Organization (ATO) Safety Programs, Federal Aviation Administration, 490 L'Enfant Plaza, Suite 7200, Washington, DC 20024; telephone (202) 267-8807, email: [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    Under Title 49 of the United States Code (49 U.S.C.), section 40123, certain voluntarily provided safety and security information is protected from disclosure in order to encourage persons to provide the information. In accordance with 14 CFR part 193, Protection of Voluntarily Submitted Information, the FAA must issue an Order that specifies why the agency finds that the information should be protected. If the Administrator issues an Order designating information as protected under 49 U.S.C. 40123, that information will not be disclosed under the Freedom of Information Act (Title 5 of the United States Code (5 U.S.C.), section 552) or other laws, except as provided in 49 U.S.C. 40123, 14 CFR part 193, and the Order designating the information as protected. This Order is issued under part 193; section 193.11, which sets out the notice procedure for designating information as protected.

    On April 3, 2015, the FAA published a notice of proposed order designating information provided under the SAFER-FCT and ATSAP-X programs as protected from disclosure under 49 U.S.C. 40123 and 14 CFR part 193. 80 FR 18168. The FAA noted that the designation of protected information is intended to encourage persons to voluntarily provide information to the FAA under the SAFER-FCT and ATSAP-X, so the FAA can learn about and address aviation safety hazards of which it was unaware or more fully understand and implement corrective measures for events or safety issues known by it through other means. The FAA invited public comment. No comments were submitted to the docket.

    Applicability

    The designation is applicable to any FAA office that receives information covered under this designation from SAFER-FCT and ATSAP-X, both of which will be incorporated in FAA Order JO 7200.20, Voluntary Safety Reporting Programs. Any other government agency that receives SAFER-FCT and ATSAP-X information covered under the designation from the FAA is subject to the requirements of 49 U.S.C. 40123 regarding nondisclosure of the information. Under § 193.7(e), each such agency must stipulate in writing, that it will abide by the requirements of section 40123, the provisions of part 193, and the Order designating SAFER-FCT and ATSAP-X as protected from public disclosure under 14 CFR part 193.

    3. Summary

    a. Qualified Participants. Region X employees who are covered under the Consolidated Collective Bargaining agreement (CBA) between NATCA and the FAA effective May 22, 2013, or its successor, and other employees identified in FAA Order 7200.22 which will be incorporated in FAA Order 7200.20, are eligible to complete a ATSAP-X report for events that occur while acting in that capacity. Vendor employees Union or Non-Union who are covered under the FAA and the Federal Contract Tower September 2011 contract, or its successor, and other employees identified in FAA Order 7200.20 are eligible to complete a SAFER-FCT report for events that occur while acting in that capacity.

    b. Voluntarily-provided Information Protected from Disclosure Under the Proposed Designation. Except for SAFER-FCT or ATSAP-X reports that involve possible criminal conduct, substance abuse, controlled substances, alcohol, or intentional falsification, the following information would be protected from disclosure:

    (1) the content of any report concerning an aviation safety or security matter that is submitted by a qualified participant under the SAFER-FCT or ATSAP-X that is accepted into either program, including the SAFER-FCT or ATSAP-X report, and the name of the submitter of the report. Notwithstanding the foregoing, mandatory information about occurrences that are required to be reported under FAA Orders or ATO guidance is not protected under this designation, unless the same information has also been submitted or reported under other procedures prescribed by the Agency. The exclusion is necessary to assure that the information protected under this designation has been voluntarily submitted. It also permits changes to ATO Orders and guidance without requiring a change to this designation.

    (2) Any evidence gathered by the Event Review Committee during its investigation of a safety- or security-related event reported under SAFER-FCT or ATSAP-X, including the SAFER-FCT or ATSAP-X investigative file.

    Note:

    The type of information or circumstances under which the information listed above would not be protected from disclosure is discussed in paragraph 3.b of this Order.

    c. Ways to Participate. FAA employees who are qualified participants register for, and submit a report into, the system.

    d. Duration of this Information-Sharing Program. This program continues as long as it is provided for by Order or a collective bargaining agreement.

    4. Findings. The FAA designates information received from a SAFER-FCT or ATSAP-X submission as protected under 49 U.S.C. 40123 and 14 CFR 193.7, based on the following findings:

    a. Summary of why the FAA finds that the information will be provided voluntarily. The FAA finds that the information will be provided voluntarily. This finding is supported by the significant increase in reports of safety-related matters since the implementation of voluntary safety reporting programs. No FAA or Vendor employee is required to participate in the SAFER-FCT or ATSAP-X.

    b. Description of the type of information that may be voluntarily provided under the program and a summary of why the FAA finds that the information is safety- related.

    (1) The following types of reports are ordinarily submitted under the SAFER-FCT or ATSAP-X:

    i. Noncompliance reports. Noncompliance reports identify specific instances of a failure to follow FAA directives.

    ii. Aviation safety concern reports. Aviation safety concerns that do not involve specific noncompliance with FAA directives. These may include, but are not limited to potential safety events or perceived problems with policies, procedures, and equipment.

    (2) Region X employees support the design, delivery and efficiency of flight services throughout the National Airspace System (NAS) facilities, systems and equipment. Reports submitted by these employees under ATSAP-X ordinarily involve matters or observations occurring during the performance of their job responsibilities, and therefore the information submitted is inherently safety related. Vendor employees provide and support the provision of air traffic services at Federal Contract Tower facilities throughout the NAS. Reports submitted by these employees under SAFER-FCT ordinarily involve occurrences or problems identified or experienced during the performance of their job responsibilities which directly affect safety.

    c. Summary of why the FAA finds that the disclosure of the information would inhibit persons from voluntarily providing that type of information.

    The FAA finds that disclosure of the information would inhibit the voluntary provision of that type of information. Employees are unwilling to voluntarily provide detailed information about safety events and concerns, including those that might involve their own failures to follow Agency directives and policies, if such information could be released publicly. If information is publicly disclosed, there is a strong likelihood that the information could be misused for purposes other than to address and resolve the reported safety concern. Unless the FAA can provide assurance that safety-related reports will be withheld from public disclosure, employees will not participate in the programs.

    d. Summary of why the receipt of that type of information aids in fulfilling the FAA's safety responsibilities. The FAA finds that receipt of information in SAFER-FCT or ATSAP-X reports aids in fulfilling the FAA's safety responsibilities. Because of its capacity to provide early identification of needed safety improvements, this information offers significant potential for addressing hazards that could lead to incidents or accidents. In particular, one of the benefits of both the SAFER-FCT and ATSAP-X is that they encourage the submission of narrative descriptions of occurrences that provide more detailed information than is otherwise available. The SAFER-FCT and ATSAP-X have produced safety-related data that is not available from any other source. Receipt of this previously unavailable information has provided the FAA with an improved basis for modifying procedures, policies, and regulations to improve safety and efficiency.

    e. Consistencies and inconsistencies with FAA safety responsibilities. The FAA finds that withholding SAFER-FCT and ATSAP-X information from public release is consistent with the FAA's safety responsibilities, because it encourages individuals to provide important safety information that it otherwise might not receive.

    (1) Withholding SAFER-FCT and ATSAP-X information from disclosure, as described in this designation, is consistent with the FAA's safety responsibilities. Without the Agency's ability to assure that the detailed information reported under these programs, which often explains why the event occurred or describes underlying problems, will not be disclosed, the information will not be provided to the FAA. Employees are concerned that public release of the information could result in potential misuses of the information that could affect them negatively. If the FAA does not receive the information, the FAA and the public will be deprived of the opportunity to make the safety improvements that receipt of the information otherwise enables. Corrective action under SAFER-FCT and ATSAP-X can be accomplished without disclosure of protected information. For example, for acceptance under both programs, the reporting employee must comply with ERC recommendations for corrective action, such as additional training for an employee. If the employee fails to complete corrective action in a manner satisfactory to all members of the ERC, the event may be referred to an appropriate office within the FAA for any additional investigation, reexamination, and/or action, as appropriate.

    (2) The FAA may release SAFER-FCT or ATSAP-X information submitted to the agency, as specified in Part 193 and this Order. For example, to explain the need for changes in FAA policies, procedures, and regulations, the FAA may disclose de-identified, summarized information that has been derived from SAFER-FCT or ATSAP-X reports or extracted from the protected information listed under paragraph 5b. The FAA may disclose de-identified, summarized SAFER-FCT or ATSAP-X information that identifies a systemic problem in the NAS, when a party needs to be advised of the problem in order to take corrective action. Under the current version of FAA Order N JO 7200.20, reported events and possible violations may be subject to investigation, reexamination, and/or action. Although the report itself and the content of the report are not used as evidence, the FAA may use the knowledge of the event or possible violation to generate an investigation, and, in that regard, the information is not protected from disclosure. To withhold information from such limited release would be inconsistent with the FAA's safety responsibilities. In addition, reports that appear to involve possible criminal activity, substance abuse, controlled substances, alcohol, or intentional falsification will be referred to an appropriate FAA office for further handling. The FAA may use such reports for enforcement purposes, and will refer such reports to law enforcement agencies, if appropriate. To withhold information in these circumstances would be inconsistent with the agency's safety responsibilities because it could prevent, or at least diminish the FAA's ability to effectively address egregious misconduct.

    f. Summary of how the FAA will distinguish information protected under part 193 from information the FAA receives from other sources.

    (1) All employee SAFER-FCT and ATSAP-X reports are clearly labeled as such. Each employee must submit their own report.

    5. Designation. The FAA designates the information described in paragraph 4b to be protected from disclosure in accordance with 49 U.S.C., section 40123 and 14 CFR part 193.

    Issued in Washington, DC on September 18, 2015. Michael P. Huerta, Administrator, Federal Aviation Administration.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24438 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission 18 CFR Part 40 [Docket No. RM15-4-000; Order No. 814] Disturbance Monitoring and Reporting Requirements Reliability Standard AGENCY:

    Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, DOE.

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approves Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 (Disturbance Monitoring and Reporting Requirements) submitted by the North American Electric Reliability Corporation. The purpose of Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 is to have adequate data available to facilitate analysis of bulk electric system disturbances.

    DATES:

    Effective Date: This rule will become effective November 24, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Juan R. Villar (Technical Information), Office of Electric Reliability, Division of Reliability Standards and Security, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, Telephone: (202) 536-2930, [email protected] Alan Rukin (Legal Information), Office of the General Counsel, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, Telephone: (202) 502-8502, [email protected]
    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Order No. 814 Final Rule (Issued September 17, 2015)

    1. Pursuant to section 215 of the Federal Power Act (FPA), the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (Commission) approves Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 (Disturbance Monitoring and Reporting Requirements).1 The North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC), the Commission-certified Electric Reliability Organization (ERO), submitted Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 for approval. The purpose of Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 is to have adequate data available to facilitate analysis of bulk electric system disturbances. In addition, the Commission approves the associated violation risk factors and violation severity levels, implementation plan, and effective date proposed by NERC. The Commission also approves the retirement of Reliability Standard PRC-018-1 due to its consolidation with Reliability Standard PRC-002-2.

    1 16 U.S.C. 824o.

    I. Background A. Section 215 and Mandatory Reliability Standards

    2. Section 215 of the FPA requires a Commission-certified ERO to develop mandatory and enforceable Reliability Standards, subject to Commission review and approval.2 Once approved, the Reliability Standards may be enforced by the ERO subject to Commission oversight or by the Commission independently.3 In 2006, the Commission certified NERC as the ERO pursuant to FPA section 215.4

    2Id. 824o(c), (d).

    3Id. 824o(e).

    4North American Electric Reliability Corp., 116 FERC ¶ 61,062 (ERO Certification Order), order on reh'g and compliance, 117 FERC ¶ 61,126 (2006), order on compliance, 118 FERC ¶ 61,190, order on reh'g, 119 FERC ¶ 61,046 (2007), rev. denied sub nom. Alcoa Inc. v. FERC, 564 F.3d 1342 (D.C. Cir. 2009).

    B. Order No. 693

    3. On March 16, 2007, the Commission issued Order No. 693, approving 83 of the 107 Reliability Standards filed by NERC, including Reliability Standard PRC-018-1.5 Reliability Standard PRC-018-1 requires the installation of disturbance monitoring equipment and the reporting of disturbance data in accordance with comprehensive requirements.6

    5Mandatory Reliability Standards for the Bulk-Power System, Order No. 693, FERC Stats. and Regs. ¶ 31,242, order on reh'g, Order No. 693-A, 120 FERC ¶ 61,053 (2007).

    6Id. PP 1550-1551.

    4. In Order No. 693, the Commission determined that proposed Reliability Standard PRC-002-1 was a “fill-in-the-blank” Reliability Standard because it required Regional Reliability Organizations to establish requirements for installation of disturbance monitoring equipment and report disturbance data to facilitate analyses of events and verify system models.7 The Commission stated that it would not approve or remand proposed Reliability Standard PRC-002-1 until NERC submitted additional necessary information to the Commission.8

    7Id. P 1451.

    8Id. P 1456.

    C. NERC Petition and Reliability Standard PRC-002-2

    5. On December 15, 2014, NERC submitted a petition seeking Commission approval of proposed Reliability Standard PRC-002-2.9 NERC contended that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 is just, reasonable, not unduly discriminatory or preferential, and in the public interest. NERC explained that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 consolidates the requirements of unapproved Reliability Standard PRC-002-1 and currently-effective Reliability Standard PRC-018-1.10

    9 Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 is not attached to this final rule. The Reliability Standard is available on the Commission's eLibrary document retrieval system in Docket No. RM15-4-00 and is posted on NERC's Web site, available at http://www.nerc.com.

    10 NERC Petition at 15.

    6. NERC stated that it is important to monitor and analyze disturbances to plan and operate the Bulk-Power System to avoid instability, separation and cascading failures.11 NERC maintained that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 improves reliability by providing personnel with necessary data to enable more effective post event analysis, which can also be used to verify system models.12 Moreover, NERC explained that the Reliability Standard “focuses on ensuring that the requisite data is captured and the Requirements constitute a results‐based approach to capturing data.”13

    11Id. at 13. NERC defines a “Disturbance” as: “(1) an unplanned event that produces an abnormal system condition; (2) any perturbation to the electric system; [or] (3) the unexpected change in [area control error] that is caused by the sudden failure of generation or interruption of load.” Id. (quoting Glossary of Terms Used in NERC Reliability Standards at 30).

    12Id. at 15.

    13Id. at 14-15.

    7. NERC stated that, in the United States, Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 will apply to planning coordinators in the Eastern Interconnection, planning coordinators or the reliability coordinator in the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) Interconnection, and the reliability coordinator in the Western Interconnection, which are collectively referred to as “Responsible Entities.” Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 will also apply to transmission owners and generation owners.

    8. NERC stated that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 includes 12 requirements. Requirement R1 requires transmission owners: (1) To identify bulk electric system buses, e.g., substations, for which sequence of events recording and fault record data is required; (2) to notify other owners of bulk electric system elements connected to those particular bulk electric system buses where sequence of events recording and fault record data will be necessary; and (3) to re-evaluate all bulk electric system buses every five years. Requirement R2 requires transmission owners and generation owners to collect sequence of events data. Requirement R3 and Requirement R4 require transmission owners and generation owners to collect fault recording data and parameters of that data. Requirement R5 through Requirement R9 lay out thresholds where dynamic disturbance recording data are required and provide more specifics on its collection.14 Requirement R10 requires transmission owners and generation owners to time synchronize the recordings. According to NERC, Requirement R10 provides the synchronization requirements in response to Recommendation No. 28 from the final report on the August 2003 blackout issued by the U.S.-Canada Power System Outage Task Force (Blackout Report).15 Requirement R11 requires transmission owners and generation owners to provide sequence of events recording, fault recording and dynamic disturbance recording data upon request and establishes specific guidelines to ensure that data can be used in the analysis of events. Requirement R12 requires transmission owners and generation owners to restore the recording capability of the equipment used to record disturbances, if this capability is interrupted.

    14 NERC Petition, Ex. A (Proposed Reliability Standard PRC-002-2), Attachment 1, Step 8 states:

    [Sequence of events recordings] and [fault recording] data is required at additional [bulk electric system] buses on the list determined in Step 6. The aggregate of the number of [bulk electric system] buses determined in Step 7 and this Step will be at least 20 percent of the [bulk electric system] buses determined in Step 6.

    The additional [bulk electric system] buses are selected, at the [t]ransmission [o]wner's discretion, to provide maximum wide-area coverage for [Sequence of events recordings] and [fault recording] data. The following [bulk electric system] bus locations are recommended:

    Electrically distant buses or electrically distant from other [disturbance monitoring equipment] devices.

    Voltage sensitive areas.

    Cohesive load and generation zones.

    [Bulk electric system] buses with a relatively high number of incident [t]ransmission circuits.

    [Bulk electric system] buses with reactive power devices.

    Major [f]acilities interconnecting outside the [t]ransmission [o]wner's area.

    15 NERC Petition at 35-36 (quoting U.S.-Canada Power System Outage Task Force, Final Report on the August 14, 2003 Blackout in the United States and Canada: Causes and Recommendations at 162 (Apr. 2004), available at http://energy.gov/sites/prod/files/oeprod/DocumentsandMedia/BlackoutFinal-Web.pdf).

    9. NERC proposed an implementation plan that includes an effective date for Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 that is the first day of the first calendar quarter that is six months after the date that the Commission approves the Reliability Standard. Concurrent with the effective date, the implementation plan calls for the retirement of currently-effective Reliability Standard PRC-018-1 and “pending” Reliability Standard PRC-002-1.16

    16Id. at Ex. B (Implementation Plan).

    D. Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

    10. On April 16, 2015, the Commission issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking proposing to approve Reliability Standard PRC-002-2.17 The NOPR also proposed to approve the associated violation risk factors and violation severity levels, implementation plan, and effective date proposed by NERC.

    17Disturbance Monitoring and Reporting Requirements Reliability Standard, Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, 80 FR 22,441 (Apr. 22, 2015), 151 FERC ¶ 61,042 (2015) (NOPR).

    11. In response to the NOPR, NERC filed initial comments in support of the NOPR. Bonneville Power Administration (Bonneville) and American Public Power Association (APPA) filed comments addressing aspects of Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 and the NOPR.18 NERC filed reply comments in response to Bonneville and APPA's comments. Below, we address the issues raised in Bonneville and APPA's comments.

    18 Mr. Eric S. Morris's comments did not specifically address issues concerning Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 or the NOPR.

    II. Discussion

    12. Pursuant to FPA section 215(d)(2), the Commission approves Reliability Standard PRC-001-2 as just, reasonable, not unduly discriminatory or preferential, and in the public interest. We also approve the associated violation risk factors, violation severity levels, implementation plan, and effective date proposed by NERC. In addition, we approve the retirement of Reliability Standard PRC-018-1 due to its consolidation with Reliability Standard PRC-002-2.19

    19 As noted above, the Commission in Order No. 693 did not approve proposed Reliability Standard PRC-002-1 but, rather, took no action on the Reliability Standard pending the receipt of additional information. Order No. 693, FERC Stats. and Regs. ¶ 31,242 at P 1456. Accordingly, with the approval of Reliability Standard PRC-002-2, proposed Reliability Standard PRC-002-1 is “retired,” i.e., withdrawn, and no longer pending before the Commission.

    13. Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 enhances reliability by imposing mandatory requirements concerning the monitoring and reporting of disturbances. Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 provides greater continent-wide consistency regarding collection methods for data used in the analysis of disturbances on the Bulk-Power System. Specifically, Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 enhances reliability by consistently requiring covered entities to collect time-synchronized information and to report disturbances on the Bulk-Power System. Accordingly, we determine that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 satisfies the relevant directive in Order No. 693.20

    20 Order No. 693, FERC Stats. and Regs. ¶ 31,242 at P 1456 (“the ERO should consider whether greater consistency can be achieved” regarding disturbance monitoring and reporting).

    14. We address below Bonneville's comments regarding the methodology used in Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 to identify bulk electric system buses that require data recording and, in Section V below, APPA's comments regarding the NOPR's Regulatory Flexibility Act certification.

    Methodology for Identifying Applicable Bulk Electric System Buses NOPR

    15. The NOPR proposed to approve Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 because the Reliability Standard enhances reliability by imposing mandatory requirements concerning the monitoring and reporting of disturbances and provides greater continent-wide consistency regarding collection methods for data used in the analysis of disturbances on the Bulk-Power System. The NOPR did not raise concerns regarding the methodology used in Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 for identifying bulk electric system buses that require data recording.

    Comments

    16. Bonneville states that it supports using digital fault recorders for sequence of events recordings and fault recordings, but Bonneville does not support the methodology used to identify bulk electric system buses that require data recording.21 Bonneville claims that NERC's petition did not provide a technical justification for the 1,500 Mega Volt Amps (MVA) calculated three-phase short circuit threshold in Reliability Standard PRC-002-2.22 Bonneville states that previous drafts of the Reliability Standard “used more logical criteria that the industry has utilized in the past, such as the number of lines connected to a bus.” 23

    21 Bonneville Comments at 2-3.

    22Id. at 3.

    23Id.

    17. Bonneville also contends that the methodology used in Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 does not allow for adequate consideration of the unique characteristics of an individual utility's system.24 Bonneville acknowledges that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2, Requirement R1 (in Attachment 1, Step 8) allows for the selection of additional bulk electric system buses “at the Transmission Owner's discretion, to provide maximum wide-area coverage for [sequence of events] and [fault recording] data.” 25 However, Bonneville contends that such discretion “may not result in consistent or repeatable results.” 26 Bonneville also questions how this provision would be audited.27 Bonneville recommends replacing the methodology in Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 with an existing methodology used in other Reliability Standards to identify critical facilities and the bulk electric system buses associated with those facilities, such as the high, medium, and low impact designations used in Reliability Standard CIP-005-5.1.28

    24Id.

    25Id.

    26Id.

    27Id.

    28Id. at 4.

    18. In its reply comments, NERC states that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 provides a technically sound basis for identifying which buses require data collection.29 NERC contends that MVA levels more accurately measure the reliability impact of a particular bus than counting the number of transmission lines connected to the bus.30 NERC explains that that the standard drafting team established the MVA threshold by sending an information request to all transmission owners and generator owners requesting data on bus fault magnitude for three-phase bolted faults on buses operated at 100 kV and higher.31 NERC states that the standard drafting team performed a median value analysis and concluded that the appropriate threshold is 1,500 MVA.32

    29 NERC Reply Comments at 5-6.

    30Id. at 6-7.

    31Id. at 7-8.

    32Id. at 8.

    19. NERC explains that it included Step 8 of the bus identification methodology in Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 to allow for the engineering judgment of a transmission owner to account for the unique characteristics of its system and to ensure adequate data capture for proper event analysis.33 NERC notes that Step 8 also provides criteria to guide an entity's decision and that, given this objective criteria, auditors will have a firm basis to assess whether the transmission owner satisfied its obligation under Step 8.34 In response to Bonneville's alternative approach, NERC contends that the selection methodology in Reliability Standard CIP 005-5.1 contemplates cybersecurity issues and does not contemplate the optimum location of disturbance monitoring.35

    33Id. at 8-9.

    34Id. at 9.

    35Id.

    Commission Determination

    20. We are not persuaded by Bonneville's concerns regarding the methodology used to identify bulk electric system buses that require data recording. As described in NERC's reply comments, NERC has provided adequate technical justification, through the use of survey data and statistical analysis, for the 1,500 MVA threshold in Reliability Standard PRC-002-2. We also find that the methodology in Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 adequately addresses the unique characteristics of individual utility systems by allowing for the selection of additional buses in Step 8 and that the decisions to add buses under Step 8 are auditable.

    III. Information Collection Statement

    21. The collection of information addressed in this final rule is subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under section 3507(d) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.36 OMB's regulations require approval of certain information collection requirements imposed by agency rules.37 Upon approval of a collection(s) of information, OMB will assign an OMB control number and an expiration date. Respondents subject to the filing requirements of a rule will not be penalized for failing to respond to these collections of information unless the collections of information display a valid OMB control number.

    36 44 U.S.C. 3507(d).

    37 5 CFR 1320.11.

    22. Public Reporting Burden: The number of respondents below is based on an examination of the NERC compliance registry for transmission owners and generation owners and the estimation of how many entities from that registry will be affected. At the time of Commission review of Reliability Standard PRC-002-2, 324 transmission owners and 915 generation owners in the United States are registered in the NERC compliance registry. The Commission notes that many generation sites share a common generation owner. Due to the nature of this task, it is likely generator owners will manage this information aggregation task using a centralized staff. Therefore, we estimate that one-third of the generation owners (305) will have to meet the requirements contained in Reliability Standard PRC-002-2. We estimate that all 324 registered transmission owners will need to comply with requirement R1 in Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 once every five years. We further estimate that two-thirds (216) of the registered transmission owners will need to comply with the remaining requirements contained in Reliability Standard PRC-002-2. Finally, we find the number of “Responsible Entities” in the United States to equal 50, based on the NERC compliance registry.38 The following table illustrates the burden to be applied to the information collection.39

    38 As discussed above, Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 defines the term “Responsible Entity” to include planning coordinators in the Eastern Interconnection, the reliability coordinator in the Western Interconnection, and planning coordinators or the reliability coordinator in the ERCOT Interconnection.

    39 In the burden table, engineering is abbreviated as “Eng.” and record keeping is abbreviated as “R.K.”

    40 The estimates for cost per response are derived using the following formula: Burden Hours per Response * $/hour = Cost per Response. The $65.34/hour figure for an engineer and the $33.42/hour figure for a record clerk are based on the average salary plus benefits data from Bureau of Labor Statistics.

    41 In the NOPR, we estimated that each transmission owner would respond annually. In this final rule, we have revised the table to reflect that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 requires transmission owners to comply every fifth year. We have revised the calculated values in column 5 of this row and the total row accordingly.

    Requirement and
  • respondent
  • category for
  • PRC-002-2
  • Number of
  • respondents
  • (1)
  • Annual
  • number of
  • responses per
  • respondent
  • (2)
  • Total
  • number of
  • responses
  • (1)*(2)=(3)
  • Average burden
  • hours & cost per
  • response 40
  • (4)
  • Annual burden hours & total annual cost
  • (3)*(4)=(5)
  • R1. Each Transmission Owner 324 41 0.2 64.8 (Eng.) 24 hrs. ($1,568.16); (R.K.) 12 hrs. ($401.04) 2,333 hrs. (1,555 Eng., 778 R.K.); $127,605 ($101,618 Eng., $25,987 R.K.). R2. Each Transmission Owner and Generator Owner 521 1 521 (Eng.) 10 hrs. ($653.40); (R.K.) 4 hrs. ($133.68) 7,294 hrs. (5210 Eng., 2084 R.K.); $410,069 ($340,422 Eng., $69,647 R.K.). R3 & R4. Each Transmission Owner and Generator Owner 521 1 521 (Eng.) 10 hrs. ($653.40); (R.K.) 4 hrs. ($133.68) 7,294 hrs. (5210 Eng., 2084 R.K.); $410,069 ($340,422 Eng., $69,647 R.K.). R5. Each Responsible Entity 50 1 50 (Eng.) 24 hrs. ($1,568.16); (R.K.) 12 hrs. ($401.04) 1,800 hrs. (1200 Eng., 600 R.K.); $98,460 ($78,408 Eng., $20,052 R.K.). R6. Each Transmission Owner 216 1 216 (Eng.) 10 hrs. ($653.40); (R.K.) 4 hrs. ($133.68) 3,024 hrs. (2160 Eng., 864 R.K.); $170,009 ($141,134 Eng., $28,875 R.K.). R7. Each Generator Owner 305 1 305 (Eng.) 10 hrs. ($653.40); (R.K.) 4 hrs. ($133.68) 4,270 hrs. (3050 Eng., 1220 R.K.); $240,059 ($199,287 Eng., $40,772 R.K.). R8. Each Transmission Owner and Generator Owner 521 1 521 (Eng.) 10 hrs. ($653.40); (R.K.) 4 hrs. ($133.68) 7,294 hrs. (5210 Eng., 2084 R.K.); $410,069 ($340,422 Eng., $69,647 R.K.). R9. Each Transmission Owner and Generator Owner 521 1 521 (Eng.) 10 hrs. ($653.40); (R.K.) 4 hrs. ($133.68) 7,294 hrs. (5210 Eng., 2084 R.K.); $410,069 ($340,422 Eng., $69,647 R.K.). R10. Each Transmission Owner and Generator Owner 521 1 521 (Eng.) 10 hrs. ($653.40); (R.K.) 4 hrs. ($133.68) 7,294 hrs. (5210 Eng., 2084 R.K.); $410,069 ($340,422 Eng., $69,647 R.K.). R11. Each Transmission Owner and Generator Owner 521 1 521 (Eng.) 8 hrs. ($522.72); (R.K.) 4 hrs. ($133.68) 6,252 hrs. (4168 Eng., 2084 R.K.); $341,984 ($272,337 Eng., $69,647 R.K.). R12. Each Transmission Owner and Generator Owner 42 52 1 52 (Eng.) 10 hrs. ($653.40); (R.K.) 4 hrs. ($133.68) 728 hrs. (520 Eng., 208 R.K.); $40,928 ($33,977 Eng., $6,951 R.K.). Total 54,877 hrs. (38,703 Eng., 16,174 R.K.); $3,069,390 ($2,528,871 Eng., $540,519 R.K.).

    Title: FERC-725G2 43 Disturbance Monitoring and Reporting Requirements.

    42 The Commission estimates that 10 percent (or 52) of the 521 registered entities will have to restore recording capability or institute a corrective action plan (CAP) each year.

    Action: Revision to existing collection.

    43 FERC-725G2 is temporarily being used because FERC-725G (OMB Control No. 1902-0252) is currently pending review at OMB.

    OMB Control No: 1902-0281.

    Respondents: Business or other for profit, and not for profit institutions.

    Frequency of Responses: Annually.

    Necessity of the Information: Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 sets forth requirements for disturbance monitoring and reporting requirements that will ensure adequate data are available to facilitate analysis of bulk electric system disturbances.

    Internal review: The Commission has assured itself, by means of its internal review, that there is specific, objective support for the burden estimates associated with the information requirements.

    23. Interested persons may obtain information on the reporting requirements by contacting the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Office of the Executive Director, 888 First Street, NE., Washington, DC 20426 [Attention: Ellen Brown, email: [email protected], phone: (202) 502-8663, fax: (202) 273-0873].

    24. Comments on the requirements of this rule may also be sent to the Office of Management and Budget, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs [Attention: Desk Officer for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission]. For security reasons, comments should be sent by email to OMB at the following email address: [email protected] Please reference OMB Control No. 1902-0281, FERC-725G2 and Docket No. RM15-4-000 in your submission.

    IV. Environmental Analysis

    25. The Commission is required to prepare an Environmental Assessment or an Environmental Impact Statement for any action that may have a significant adverse effect on the human environment.44 The Commission has categorically excluded certain actions from this requirement as not having a significant effect on the human environment. Included in the exclusion are rules that are clarifying, corrective, or procedural or that do not substantially change the effect of the regulations being amended.45 The actions here fall within this categorical exclusion in the Commission's regulations.

    44Regulations Implementing the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, Order No. 486, 52 FR 47897 (Dec. 17, 1987), FERC Stats. & Regs., Regulations Preambles 1986-1990 ¶ 30,783 (1987).

    45 18 CFR 380.4(a)(2)(ii).

    V. Regulatory Flexibility Act

    26. The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (RFA) 46 generally requires a description and analysis of proposed rules that will have significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The Small Business Administration (SBA) revised its size standards (effective January 22, 2014) for electric utilities from a standard based on megawatt hours to a standard based on the number of employees, including affiliates.

    46 5 U.S.C. 601-612.

    NOPR

    27. The Commission proposed that, under SBA's new standards, some transmission owners and generation owners might fall under the following category and associated size threshold: electric bulk power transmission and control at 500 employees; hydroelectric power generation at 500 employees; fossil fuel electric power generation at 750 employees; nuclear electric power generation at 750 employees.

    28. The Commission estimated that the number of applicable small entities will be minimal due to the gross MVA thresholds embedded into Reliability Standard PRC-002-2. The gross MVA thresholds focus information collection on bulk electric system facilities having Interconnection-wide impacts worthy of collecting. We estimated that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 will apply to approximately 521 entities in the United States.47 The Commission applied the MVA thresholds above to estimate that approximately 52 (or 10 percent) are small entities. The Commission estimated for these small entities, Reliability Standard PRC-002-2, Requirement R1 may need to be evaluated and documented every five years with costs of $9,847 for each evaluation.48 From this set of small entities, the Commission estimated that five percent, or only two or three small entities, may be affected by the other requirements, i.e., Requirements R2 through R12, of Reliability Standard PRC-002-2. The Commission proposed that based on a prior industry-sponsored survey, annual compliance costs will average $100,000-$160,000 for entities subject to these requirements.49

    47 This number consists of the 216 transmission owners and the 305 generation owners; however, it does not include the 50 “Responsible Entities.” See supra n.38.

    48 The costs associated with evaluation will occur every fifth year. By dividing the estimated costs of evaluation by five, we estimate the annual cost to be $1,969.40.

    49See NERC Petition Ex. G (Record of Development) at 257 of pdf file, providing link to: NERC Cost Effective Analysis Process (CEAP) Pilot for NERC Project 2007-11—Disturbance Monitoring—PRC-002-2 at 8 (Apr. 9, 2014).

    Comments

    29. APPA contends that the NOPR understates the impact that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 will have on small entities by underestimating the number or small entities affected and by not addressing the “discriminatory distribution of implementation costs” on small entities.50 APPA bases its assertion on information provided by one APPA member and not on a formal survey of its members or independent analysis.51 APPA states that its unnamed member, a municipal joint action agency, has determined that ten of its members qualify as small entities and that eight of these entities would be subject to the requirements of Reliability Standard PRC-002-2. APPA further claims that “if the Commission were to extrapolate from the information outlined above to the estimated 52 small [transmission operators] across the country, it would clearly show that a substantial number of small entities are affected by proposed reliability standard PRC-002-2.” 52

    50 APPA Comments at 3.

    51Id.

    52Id.

    30. APPA also contends that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 will place an undue burden on small entities because they do not currently have sequence of events recording or fault recording data recorders installed on their bulk electric system buses.53 APPA contrasts this with larger entities that may have already installed those data recorders.54 APPA also maintains that small entities' buses likely would not be selected for monitoring if they were included in a larger data set analyzed on a wide-area basis.55 APPA further states that the methodology in Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 unduly discriminates against small entities because entities with fewer than 10 qualifying buses will have to monitor a greater percentage of their buses than larger entities, which are responsible to monitor only 10 percent of their buses.56 APPA requests that if the Commission does not require changes to Reliability Standard PRC-002-2, the Commission should direct NERC to provide an alternative compliance methodology for small entities that would allow them to find an equally effective method to gather data from upstream buses to reduce the burden on small entities.57

    53Id. at 3-4.

    54Id. at 4.

    55Id. at 4-6.

    56Id. at 6-7.

    57Id. at 7.

    31. In its reply comments, NERC contends that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 does not place an undue burden on small entities.58 NERC states that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 does not explicitly require the installation of fault recording data recorders on all identified buses.59 NERC explains that transmission owners need not install devices to meet the requirements of Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 as long as the transmission owner can obtain the required data from other sources such as other buses.60 NERC contends that APPA's comment that the Reliability Standard should identify either regional or sub-regional bus locations as appropriate for disturbance monitoring is flawed because transmission owners are in the best position to determine the location of the buses due to their knowledge of their systems.61

    58 NERC Reply Comments at 9-11.

    59Id. at 9.

    60Id. at 9-10.

    61Id. at 11.

    Commission Determination

    32. The RFA requires an analysis when a rule will have significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The comments submitted by APPA do not justify altering the RFA certification proposed in the NOPR.

    33. We are not persuaded by APPA's claims regarding the number of small entities likely to be affected by Reliability Standard PRC-002-2. APPA relied on an unverified report from a single unnamed entity to claim that eight small entities (rather than the two or three estimated in the NOPR) would be affected by Reliability Standard PRC-002-2. Even if we were to assume that APPA is correct regarding the eight small entities, we find that eight small entities out of 52 estimated small entities is not a substantial number of small entities. Further, aside from the number of small entities affected, APPA does not address the NOPR's estimate that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 will not impose a significant economic impact on applicable small entities.

    34. With respect to APPA's claim that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 imposes “discriminatory distribution of implementation costs on small entities,” 62 we agree with NERC that APPA's comments are premised on the incorrect assertion that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 requires the installation of recording devices. As noted in NERC's reply comments, Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 gives applicable entities “the flexibility to either install devices on their systems or, to reduce their financial burden, obtain the necessary data through other means (e.g., by working with their interconnected neighbors).” 63

    62Id. at 3.

    63Id. at 10.

    35. Accordingly, we certify that Reliability Standard PRC-002-2 will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

    VI. Document Availability

    36. In addition to publishing the full text of this document in the Federal Register, the Commission provides all interested persons an opportunity to view and/or print the contents of this document via the Internet through the Commission's Home Page (http://www.ferc.gov) and in the Commission's Public Reference Room during normal business hours (8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Eastern time) at 888 First Street, NE., Room 2A, Washington, DC 20426.

    37. From the Commission's Home Page on the Internet, this information is available on eLibrary. The full text of this document is available on eLibrary in PDF and Microsoft Word format for viewing, printing, and/or downloading. To access this document in eLibrary, type the docket number excluding the last three digits of this document in the docket number field.

    38. User assistance is available for eLibrary and the Commission's Web site during normal business hours from FERC Online Support at 202-502-6652 (toll free at 1-866-208-3676) or email at [email protected], or the Public Reference Room at (202) 502-8371, TTY (202) 502-8659. Email the Public Reference Room at [email protected]

    VII. Effective Date and Congressional Notification

    39. The final rule is effective November 24, 2015. The Commission has determined, with the concurrence of the Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs of OMB, that this rule is not a “major rule” as defined in section 351 of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996. This final rule is being submitted to the Senate, House, and Government Accountability Office.

    By the Commission.

    Issued: September 17, 2015.

    Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24278 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY Internal Revenue Service 26 CFR Part 53 [TD 9740] RIN 1545-BL23 Reliance Standards for Making Good Faith Determinations AGENCY:

    Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Treasury.

    ACTION:

    Final regulations.

    SUMMARY:

    This document contains final regulations regarding the standards for making a good faith determination that a foreign organization is a charitable organization that is not a private foundation, so that grants made to that foreign organization may be qualifying distributions and not taxable expenditures. The regulations also make additional changes to conform the final regulations to statutory amendments made by the Deficit Reduction Act of 1984 and the Pension Protection Act of 2006. The regulations will affect private foundations seeking to make good faith determinations.

    DATES:

    Effective date: These regulations are effective on September 25, 2015.

    Applicability date: For the dates of applicability, see §§ 53.4942(a)-3(f) and 53.4945-5(f)(3).

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ward L. Thomas, (202) 317-6173 (not a toll-free number).

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Paperwork Reduction Act

    The collection of information in these final regulations is the good faith determination set forth in §§ 53.4942(a)-3(a)(6) and 53.4945-5(a)(5). The collection of information contained in these regulations is reflected in the collection of information for Form 990-PF, “Return of Private Foundation or Section 4947(a)(1) Trust Treated as Private Foundation,” that has been reviewed and approved by the Office of Management and Budget in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3507(d)), under control number 1545-0052. An 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. Books or records relating to a collection of information must be retained as long as their contents might become material in the administration of any internal revenue law.

    Background

    This document contains amendments to 26 CFR part 53 under chapter 42, subtitle D of the Internal Revenue Code (Code). To avoid certain excise taxes under chapter 42, a private foundation (referred to in this preamble as a “foundation” or “grantor”) 1 must make a minimum level of “qualifying distributions” (as defined in section 4942 of the Code) each year and must avoid making taxable expenditures (as defined in section 4945). A foundation generally may treat grants made for charitable purposes to certain foreign organizations as qualifying distributions under section 4942 if the foundation makes a good faith determination that the foreign organization is an organization described in sections 501(c)(3) and 509(a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) (a “public charity”) that is not a “disqualified supporting organization” described in section 4942(g)(4)(A)(i) or (ii), or is an organization described in sections 501(c)(3) and 4942(j)(3) (an “operating foundation,” also known as a “private operating foundation”). Similarly, foundations may treat grants for charitable purposes to certain foreign organizations as other than taxable expenditures under section 4945 without having to exercise expenditure responsibility if the foundation makes a good faith determination that the foreign organization is a public charity (other than a disqualified supporting organization) or is an operating foundation described in section 4940(d)(2) (an “exempt operating foundation”). In this preamble, a foreign grantee that is a public charity or operating foundation that may receive a qualifying distribution (or a grant for which expenditure responsibility is not required) is referred to as a “qualifying public charity.” 2 This good faith determination is commonly known as an “equivalency determination.”

    1 The regulations under section 4942 refer to “distributing foundations” making distributions to “donee organizations,” whereas the regulations under section 4945 refer to “grantor foundations” making or paying grants to “grantee organizations.” For simplicity, this preamble refers to grantors making grants or distributions to grantee organizations, in reference to both Code sections.

    2 The class of qualifying public charities for purposes of section 4945 is a slightly smaller subset of those for purposes of section 4942. Thus, grants to foreign organizations determined to be operating foundations that are not exempt operating foundations, and grants by operating foundations to foreign organizations determined to be disqualified supporting organizations, may be qualifying distributions under section 4942 but the grantor must nevertheless exercise expenditure responsibility to avoid excise taxes under section 4945 on such grants.

    Longstanding regulations under both sections 4942 and 4945 provide that a foundation will ordinarily be considered to have made a “good faith determination” if the determination is based on an affidavit of the grantee or on an opinion of counsel of either the grantor or the grantee. The affidavit or opinion must set forth sufficient facts concerning the operations and support of the grantee for the IRS to determine that the grantee would be likely to qualify as a public charity or an operating foundation. See §§ 53.4942(a)-3(a)(6) and 53.4945-5(a)(5). In this preamble, we refer to this rule, which gives assurance to foundations meeting the rule that their grants to foreign organizations will ordinarily be considered to be qualifying distributions and not taxable expenditures, as the “special rule.”

    Revenue Procedure 92-94, 1992-2 CB 507, provides further guidance by providing a “simplified procedure” that foundations may follow, both for making “good faith determinations” under §§ 53.4942(a)-3(a)(6) and 53.4945-5(a)(5), and for making similar “reasonable judgments” under § 53.4945-6(c)(2)(ii) that a foreign organization is described in section 501(c)(3) (or in section 4947(a)(1), and thus treated under section 4947(a)(1) as described in section 501(c)(3) for purposes of chapter 42 of the Code). Under the revenue procedure, if the grantor's determination that a foreign organization is described in section 501(c)(3) or section 4947(a)(1) of the Code and is either a public charity or an operating foundation is based on a “currently qualified” affidavit prepared by the grantee containing the information specified in the revenue procedure, then the foundation will be deemed to have made a good faith determination (for purposes of §§ 53.4942(a)-3(a)(6) and 53.4945-5(a)(5)) and a reasonable judgment (for purposes of § 53.4945-6(c)(2)(ii)). If a foundation possesses information that suggests the affidavit may not be reliable, it must consider that information in determining whether the affidavit is currently qualified.

    Revenue Procedure 92-94 provides that an affidavit will be considered currently qualified if: (1) The facts it contains reflect the grantee organization's latest complete accounting year (or the affidavit is updated to reflect the grantee organization's current data) and (2) the relevant substantive requirements of sections 501(c)(3) and 4947(a)(1) and sections 509(a)(1), (2), or (3) or section 4942(j)(3) remain unchanged. If a grantee's status under the relevant Code sections does not depend on financial support, which can change from year to year, an affidavit need be updated only by asking the grantee to amend the description of any facts in the original affidavit that have changed. If the facts have not changed, an attested statement by the grantee to that effect is enough to update an affidavit. However, if a grantee's status as a public charity or operating foundation depends on financial support, the affidavit must be updated at least every other year by asking the grantee to provide an attested statement containing enough financial data to establish that it continues to meet the requirements of the applicable Code section.

    On September 24, 2012, the Department of the Treasury (Treasury Department) and the IRS published a notice of proposed rulemaking (REG-134974-12) in the Federal Register (77 FR 58796) that contained proposed regulations regarding the standards for making a good faith determination that a foreign organization is a qualifying public charity, so that grants made to the foreign organization may be qualifying distributions and not taxable expenditures. The proposed regulations would have modified the special rule in §§ 53.4942(a)-3(a)(6) and 53.4945-5(a)(5) by generally expanding the class of advisors upon whose advice foundations may ordinarily rely in making good faith determinations beyond the attorneys for the grantor and grantee to “qualified tax practitioners” (including attorneys, CPAs, and enrolled agents subject to the requirements of Circular 230). In addition, the proposed regulations would have clarified that a determination based on written advice is ordinarily considered made in good faith if the foundation's reliance on the written advice meets the requirements of § 1.6664-4(c)(1), which are the standards for reasonable reliance in good faith on professional tax advice for penalty relief purposes. The proposed regulations also would have updated the regulations to reflect legislative changes regarding qualifying public charities.

    The proposed revisions to the regulations were intended to facilitate grantmaking by foundations to foreign organizations by making it easier and less costly for foundations to obtain written advice from qualified tax practitioners to assure that a grant will ordinarily be considered a qualifying distribution (and not a taxable expenditure). The preamble to the proposed regulations explained that expanding the class of practitioners on whose written advice a foundation may base a good faith determination was expected to decrease the cost of seeking professional advice regarding these determinations, enabling foundations to engage in international philanthropy in a more cost-effective manner. At the same time, expressly allowing reliance for purposes of the special rule on a broader spectrum of professional tax advisors was expected to encourage more foundations to obtain written tax advice, thus promoting the quality of the determinations being made. To facilitate this, foundations were permitted to rely on the provisions of the proposed regulations for grants made on or after September 24, 2012.

    The preamble to the proposed regulations specifically requested comments on three issues. First, comments were requested on whether a time limit for reliance on an affidavit or written advice would be appropriate, and if so, the proper length of such a time limit. Second, comments were sought on whether Rev. Proc. 92-94 should be modified to take into account changes to the public support test regulations for public charity qualification that were finalized in 2011 (TD 9549; 76 FR 55745). Third, although the proposed regulations did not change the ability of foundations to rely on grantee affidavits for purposes of the special rule, the Treasury Department and the IRS notified the public that they were considering whether it would be appropriate to remove reliance on affidavits for purposes of the special rule, or to restrict it (for example, by permitting use of affidavits only for grants below a certain dollar amount or by requiring supporting information), and requested comments.

    No public hearing was requested or held; however, 11 comments from the public were received. All comments are available at www.regulations.gov or upon request. After consideration of the comments, the proposed regulations are adopted as amended by this Treasury decision.

    Summary of Comments and Explanation of Provisions

    Commenters were generally supportive of the proposed regulations, with several expressing their hope or expectation that the proposed regulations would reduce barriers to, and streamline the process of, international grantmaking. Commenters noted that expanding the class of professionals upon whose written advice a foundation may base its good faith determination would reduce the costs of making equivalency determinations by enabling the sector to take advantage of economies of scale to increase the quality and efficiency of good faith determinations regarding foreign grantees. The majority of comments focused primarily on the three issues for which comments specifically were requested: (1) The circumstances under which it would be appropriate for foundations to rely on grantee affidavits in making equivalency determinations, (2) the permitted reliance period for an affidavit or advisor's written advice, and (3) modification of Rev. Proc. 92-94.

    The final regulations balance two important considerations: (1) Removing barriers to international grantmaking by foundations (as well as by entities treated like foundations for these purposes) and (2) ensuring that foundations' good faith determinations are informed by a sufficient understanding of the applicable law, are based on all relevant factual information, and are likely to be correct. The Treasury Department and IRS take note that, according to publicly available data, foundations (acting in reliance on the proposed regulations, as permitted) now may obtain written advice of a qualified tax practitioner for purposes of making a good faith determination at a substantially lower cost than was previously available, in part due to economies of scale experienced by organizations employing qualified tax practitioners specializing in providing written advice to several grantors.

    The major areas of comment and the revisions are discussed in this preamble.

    Expanded Class of Advisors

    In accordance with the proposed regulations and public comments, the final regulations modify the special rule to expand the class of advisors providing written advice on which foundations may ordinarily rely to qualified tax practitioners, including CPAs and enrolled agents (as well as attorneys) who are subject to the standards of practice before the IRS set out in Circular 230. A qualified tax practitioner may include an attorney serving as a foundation's in-house counsel, as well as a foundation's outside counsel. Because Circular 230 requires that, to practice before the IRS, an attorney or CPA must be licensed in a state, territory, or possession of the U.S., and an enrolled agent must be enrolled by the IRS, the final regulations effectively require that the advisor be authorized to practice in a state, territory, or possession of the U.S. or as an enrolled agent. In addition, like the proposed regulations, the final regulations provide that a determination based on the written advice of a qualified tax practitioner ordinarily will be considered as made in good faith if the foundation's reliance meets the requirements of § 1.6664-4(c)(1). As noted in the preamble to the proposed regulations, § 1.6664-4(c)(1) provides that all pertinent facts and circumstances must be taken into account in determining whether a taxpayer has reasonably relied in good faith on written advice, but a foundation's reliance on written advice is not reasonable and in good faith if the foundation knows, or reasonably should have known, that a qualified tax practitioner lacks knowledge of the relevant aspects of U.S. tax law (which, in this context, would include the U.S. tax law of charities). Moreover, a foundation may not rely on written advice if it knows, or has reason to know, that relevant facts were not disclosed to the qualified tax practitioner or that the written advice is based on a representation or assumption that the foundation knows, or has reason to know, is unlikely to be true.

    Reliance on Opinion of Foreign Counsel

    One commenter suggested that the final regulations clarify that foundations and qualified tax practitioners may obtain advice from foreign counsel on questions of foreign law when making good faith determinations. The final regulations, consistent with the proposed regulations, provide that, for purposes of the special rule, if a foundation's determination is based on the written advice of a qualified tax practitioner, the foundation will ordinarily be considered to have made a good faith determination. The Treasury Department and the IRS are concerned that, standing alone, an opinion of foreign counsel, who may or may not have expertise in U.S. tax law, may not ordinarily be a sufficient basis for a determination of a foreign organization's status. Thus, under the final regulations, foundations basing their determination on an opinion of counsel of the grantor or grantee will no longer come within the special rule unless the counsel is a qualified tax practitioner. However, neither the proposed regulations nor the final regulations proscribe the use of foreign counsel in otherwise seeking to make a good faith determination, including use of foreign counsel in gathering information relevant to the determination. The standards of practice before the IRS and requirements for written advice address reliance by qualified tax practitioners on foreign counsel for questions of foreign law. Sections 10.22(b), 10.35(a), and 10.37(b) of Circular 230 generally permit a practitioner to consult with and rely on other experts in appropriate circumstances. It follows, therefore, that a foundation may reasonably rely on written advice received from a qualified tax practitioner in accordance with § 1.6664-4(c)(1) that in turn reasonably relies on advice or assistance from foreign counsel as to questions of foreign law or other matters within such counsel's expertise.

    Reliance on Grantee Affidavits

    The preamble to the proposed regulations requested comments on whether a foundation's ability to base a good faith determination on an affidavit should be removed, and if not, whether the use of such affidavits should be restricted. In the preamble, the Treasury Department and the IRS expressed their concern that, for purposes of the special rule, grantee affidavits, standing alone, are not always as reliable a basis for making good faith determinations as written advice from qualified tax practitioners and asked for comments. Several comments were received in response to this request.

    Most commenters that addressed the issue recommended that foundations continue to be permitted to base a good faith determination on an affidavit of a foreign organization attested to by a principal officer of the foreign organization. These commenters noted that grantee affidavits are often a reliable means of collecting facts about the organization and operations of the foreign grantee, even if, as one commenter noted, on matters of U.S. tax law a grantmaker cannot ordinarily rely on a foreign organization's conclusion that the grantee has a particular tax status. Several commenters noted that the current procedures outlined in Rev. Proc. 92-94 require that affidavits include significant detail and specific accompanying information, which, in their experience, ensures that a foundation has a clear picture of the organization and operation of the foreign organization before making a determination based on the affidavit. However, these commenters also noted that, in their experience, it was often necessary for someone at the foundation (presumably with knowledge of U.S. tax law) to work closely with a foreign organization to ensure that the principal officer attesting to the affidavit understands exactly what is called for and that the affidavit is appropriately completed.

    Many commenters stated that foundations should not be required to obtain professional tax advice and requested assurance that a foundation could continue to make good faith determinations without having to engage counsel or another qualified tax practitioner, especially if the foundation or the grant is small. One commenter noted that engaging a qualified tax practitioner may impose substantial costs on a foundation, particularly if the foundation makes repeated grants to the same organization. Another commenter stated that it would be excessive for the regulations to suggest that a grantmaker must ordinarily use professional advisors in order for a determination to be in good faith, but noted that if a grantmaker goes without professional advice, it is fair for the IRS to review its conclusions and its process for reaching those conclusions to see if the grantmaker has complied with the good faith determination standard in the regulations.

    One commenter favored eliminating the grantee affidavit as a free-standing means for making equivalency determinations. In the commenter's experience, the staff and volunteers of most, but not all, foreign grantees have neither the training nor the experience with U.S. tax law needed to make determinations called for by Rev. Proc. 92-94. Therefore, the commenter believed it is important to eliminate reliance on the grantee affidavit.

    The Treasury Department and the IRS agree that a grantee affidavit may be a reliable basis for forming a good faith determination in appropriate situations, for example, if the grantee has sufficient knowledge of U.S. tax law to ensure that the affidavit is appropriately completed and contains all relevant information. However, many foreign organizations may lack knowledge of U.S. tax law of charities, as noted by one commenter. In addition, although some foundations have knowledge of U.S. tax law sufficient to assess the reliability of grantee affidavits, to assist foreign grantees in completing the affidavits properly (if necessary), and to appropriately apply the law to the facts stated in the affidavit, the Treasury Department and IRS do not believe that such knowledge of U.S. tax law is universal. Accordingly, the Treasury Department and IRS do not think it is appropriate to ordinarily consider a good faith determination to have been made solely because it is based on a grantee affidavit. Therefore, under the final regulations, a grantee affidavit is not included in the special rule as a basis upon which a determination ordinarily will be considered a good faith determination.

    The final regulations do not, however, foreclose the use of grantee affidavits as a source of information in otherwise making a good faith determination. Nor does elimination of the affidavit for purposes of the special rule mean that the foundation must obtain written advice from a qualified tax practitioner in order to make a good faith determination. For example, a foundation manager with understanding of U.S. charity tax law may under the general rule make a good faith determination that a foreign grantee is a qualifying public charity based on the information in an affidavit supplied by the grantee. Furthermore, foundation managers or their in-house counsel may themselves be qualified tax practitioners, whose written advice may be reasonably relied upon for determinations to come within the special rule.

    One commenter suggested that to ensure that affidavits of foreign organizations provide a reliable basis for making a good faith determination, the IRS should further clarify what supporting documentation must be provided by a foreign organization and when private foundations may in good faith rely on the responses of foreign organizations. This commenter recommended that the IRS amplify Rev. Proc. 92-94 to state explicitly when the response of the foreign organization is sufficient and when additional supporting documentation (for example, a copy of the relevant law) should be requested from the organization. The Treasury Department and the IRS have concluded, however, that due to the many possible factual differences in foreign organizations' structures, governance, operations, financial support, and relevant local laws and practices, it would be difficult to provide specific guidance governing affidavits and supporting documentation in various situations.

    Some commenters raised concerns that removing reliance on grantee affidavits for purposes of the special rule would increase costs for foundations and inhibit international grantmaking, particularly for those grantors making many small grants to foreign organizations. However, commenters generally agreed with the Treasury Department and IRS that the changes proposed in the regulations could lower the cost of obtaining professional advice on equivalency determinations by expanding the class of advisors who may provide written advice to foundation managers. Indeed, based on publicly available information, it appears that foundations relying on the proposed rules (as permitted) are now able to obtain professional advice from qualified tax practitioners to come within the special rule at a significantly reduced cost. Furthermore, under the final regulations, grantee affidavits remain a cost-effective way of obtaining information relevant to making good faith determinations and foundations may continue to rely on them when making determinations to the extent reliance is reasonable and appropriate under the facts and circumstances. Accordingly, the Treasury Department and IRS believe that the final regulations achieve the balance of facilitating international grantmaking while still ensuring that equivalency determinations are appropriately made.

    To mitigate the effects of elimination of reliance on grantee affidavits for purposes of the special rule, the final regulations provide a 90-day transition period similar to that set forth in § 53.4945-5(f)(2) (dealing with the implementation of the expenditure responsibility rules). During this 90-day period, foundations may distribute grants in accordance with the former regulations regarding the use of grantee affidavits and opinions of counsel of the grantor or grantee. In addition, under the final regulations, if a grant is distributed pursuant to a written commitment made prior to the applicability date of the final regulations and the grantor made a determination in good faith based on the prior regulations, the distribution is treated as compliant as long as the grant is paid out to the grantee within five years.

    Period for Reliance on Written Advice

    The preamble to the proposed regulations requested comments on whether a time limit for reliance on written advice is appropriate, and if so, suggestions for the length of time that should be considered reasonable. Most commenters responded affirmatively to this request and favored guidance setting forth a definite period for reliance on written advice, with most suggesting a period of generally two years (starting from the date of the written advice or the time of the factual information on which the written advice is based).

    More specifically, commenters recommended that foundations be able to rely on written advice that a foreign organization meets a public support test under § 1.170A-9(f)(4)(vii)(B) or § 1.509(a)-3(c)(1)(i) for periods similar to those in the rules applicable to publicly supported organizations that have been recognized by the IRS as exempt under section 501(c)(3) and described in section 170(b)(1)(A)(vi) or 509(a)(2).3 For example, one commenter noted that for section 170(b)(1)(A)(vi) and section 509(a)(2) organizations, if an organization meets the public support test for a five-year test period, then for most purposes, including for purposes of sections 4942 and 4945, the organization is treated as publicly supported for the two tax years immediately following the end of the five-year support test period. See § 1.170A-9(f)(4)(vii)(B) and § 1.509(a)-3(c)(1)(i). Thus, if an organization meets a public support test for a five-year test period ending in 2014, the organization is also considered publicly supported in 2015 and (for most purposes) 2016.

    3 These rules provide that a publicly supported organization that fails to meet the applicable public support test for two consecutive years will be treated as a private foundation as of the first day of the second consecutive taxable year only for purposes of sections 507, 4940, and 6033.

    Commenters also noted that Rev. Proc. 92-94, section 4.05, provides a general two-year period for reliance on an affidavit with regard to a foreign grantee's public support status, such that it is ordinarily necessary to obtain a full update of financial information to determine public support under sections 170(b)(1)(A)(vi) and 509(a)(2) only every other year. Citing these provisions, some commenters requested that the final regulations permit reliance for two tax years after the end of the foreign organization's last tax year of financial information used to determine the organization's public support. Thus, for example, commenters suggested that a 2012 equivalency determination based on financial information from 2007-2011 should be sufficient to demonstrate that the organization would be considered a public charity for both 2012 and 2013, resulting in a period of reliance of up to two years, depending on when in 2012 the determination was made. One commenter suggested that reliance should extend only until the 15th day of the fifth month after the end of the first year following the test period—in the example above, until May 15, 2013—and that a qualified tax practitioner should have to review the foreign grantee's sources of financial support for 2012 before issuing advice that the organization can be treated as publicly supported for the remainder of 2013.

    For other qualifying public charities, which do not have a public support requirement, such as schools or hospitals, one commenter requested a reliance period of five years, with a requirement to get a certificate after three years that the relevant law and facts have not changed in any material respect. Another commenter suggested that a foundation be able to rely on advice if the information (other than that for the public support requirement) is current in the present or immediately preceding accounting period of the grantee.

    The Treasury Department and the IRS agree with commenters that providing a specific timeframe for reliance on written advice for purposes of the special rule will provide clarity for foundations seeking to meet the requirements of the rule and will promote determinations that are consistently based on current information. Therefore, the final regulations provide that, for purposes of the special rule, written advice of a qualified tax practitioner serving as the basis for a good faith determination must be “current.” Written advice will be considered current if, as of the date of the distribution, the relevant law on which the advice was based has not changed since the date of the written advice and the factual information on which the advice was based is from the organization's current or prior year. However, consistent with rules for determinations of public support over a five-year test period for U.S. public charities, written advice that an organization satisfied the public support requirements under section 170(b)(1)(A)(vi) or section 509(a)(2) based on support over a test period of five years will be treated as current for the two years of the grantee immediately following the end of the five-year test period. For purposes of these rules, an organization's year refers to its taxable year for U.S. tax purposes, or its annual accounting period if it does not have a U.S. taxable year. Additional guidance and examples illustrating the application of these rules may be provided in the update to Rev. Proc. 92-94, discussed further in the next section of this preamble.

    It should be noted that the rules regarding when written advice will be considered current apply only for purposes of the special rule. Although this standard reflects a belief that it will usually be reasonable to rely on written advice of a qualified tax practitioner if the advice and underlying facts are no more than two years old (provided the foundation does not know or have reason to know that such information is no longer accurate), it is possible that written advice that is not current for purposes of the special rule may, under some facts and circumstances, reasonably serve as the basis for a good faith determination under the general rule. The age of the facts underlying the written advice would be a consideration in determining whether a good faith determination has been made.

    Qualified tax practitioners must, of course, satisfy all requirements for written advice under Circular 230 as of the date of issuance of the written advice (including requirements regarding the factual basis for the advice). The rules regarding when written advice will be considered current for purposes of making distributions to grantees do not alter the Circular 230 standards applicable to qualified tax practitioners, which provide that the practitioner must base the written advice on reasonable factual assumptions and reasonably consider all relevant facts and circumstances that the practitioner knows or reasonably should know. To avoid any implication that the reliance period under the special rule would permit written advice to be based on outdated factual information, the final regulation has been revised to clarify that the written advice must contain sufficient facts to permit the IRS to determine that the grantee would be likely to qualify as a public charity at the time the advice is written.

    Update of Rev. Proc. 92-94

    The preamble to the proposed regulations also requested comments on whether Rev. Proc. 92-94 should be modified to take into account changes in the public support test and whether additional guidelines regarding appropriate timeframes for gathering information should be provided. Most commenters recommended updating Rev. Proc. 92-94 and noted that it is frequently used by qualified tax practitioners for gathering factual information on which to base their written advice. Commenters also recommended that an updated revenue procedure address several key issues relating to foreign organizations, including foreign school compliance with Rev. Proc. 75-50, 1975-2 CB 587, the nature of support from foreign governments, and foreign hospital compliance with section 501(r) (subsequently addressed at § 1.501(r)-1(b)(17)).

    The IRS intends to publish an updated revenue procedure, revised to reflect the changes implemented in these regulations as well as changes to the public support tests for section 170(b)(1)(A)(vi) and 509(a)(2) organizations set forth in final regulations implementing the redesign of Form 990, published in the Federal Register (TD 9549; 76 FR 55746) on September 8, 2011. The Treasury Department and the IRS will consider the issues raised by commenters in developing the updated revenue procedure.

    Reliance on Written Advice Shared by Another Foundation

    One commenter asked for confirmation that a foundation could share the written advice of its in-house counsel or other qualified tax practitioner with other foundations, and that the other foundations could make their determinations based on the shared advice, without incurring excise taxes.

    Written advice relating to the grantee's status for purposes of an equivalency determination is based on the facts and circumstances of the grantee, and not on the facts and circumstances of the grantor foundation that received the advice. Therefore, it is possible that the conclusions reached in the written advice one foundation received from a qualified tax practitioner could reasonably be used by another foundation to make a good faith determination about the same grantee. This may be the case, for example, if the foundation with whom the written advice is shared knows the qualified tax practitioner well and is familiar with the due diligence practices of the foundation that provided the facts to the qualified tax practitioner and received the written advice. However, when written advice obtained by one foundation is later shared with a second foundation (or shared even further with other foundations), the foundation seeking to base its good faith determination on the written advice may have no knowledge of the qualified tax practitioner that gave the advice or whether all material facts were disclosed to the practitioner. Although reliance on shared advice of a trusted tax practitioner that is based on all the material facts may be economical, and in some cases may be reasonable and appropriate, the Treasury Department and the IRS are concerned that, in other cases, the foundation receiving the advice may not be in a position to appropriately evaluate the reliability of the written advice that was shared. Thus, the final regulations do not prohibit a foundation from using written advice shared with it by another foundation in making a good faith determination if it is reasonable to do so under all the facts and circumstances (including the age of the facts supporting the written advice). However, the final regulations clarify that for a foundation seeking the benefit of the special rule, the written advice a foundation relies on in making its determination must be received from the qualified tax practitioner (rather than from another foundation).

    Equivalency Determinations by Sponsoring Organizations of Donor Advised Funds

    Commenters suggested that the Treasury Department and the IRS clarify that sponsoring organizations of donor advised funds can use these final regulations to make equivalency determinations for purposes of distributions from donor advised funds to foreign organizations. Until further guidance is issued, sponsoring organizations of donor advised funds may use these regulations as guidance in making equivalency determinations (applying the definition of “disqualified supporting organization” under section 4966(d)(4) in lieu of section 4942(g)(4)(A)(i) or (ii)).4

    4 This is consistent with the Joint Committee on Taxation, Technical Explanation of H.R. 4, the “Pension Protection Act of 2006” (JCX-38-06, Aug. 3, 2006) at p. 349, which provides:

    For purposes of the requirement that a distribution be “to” an organization described in section 170(b)(1)(A), in general, it is intended that rules similar to the rules of Treasury regulation § 53.4945-5(a)(5) apply. Under such regulations, for purposes of determining whether a grant by a private foundation is “to” an organization described in section 509(a)(1), (2), or (3) and so not a taxable expenditure under section 4945, a foreign organization that otherwise is not a section 509(a)(1), (2), or (3) organization is considered as such if the private foundation makes a good faith determination that the grantee is such an organization. Similarly, under the provision, if a sponsoring organization makes a good faith determination (under standards similar to those currently applicable for private foundations) that a distributee organization is an organization described in section 170(b)(1)(A) (other than a disqualified supporting organization), then a distribution to such organization is not considered a taxable distribution.

    Reliance by Public Charities

    One commenter proposed that the final regulations also allow public charities to make equivalency determinations to avoid the requirements imposed on them by Rev. Rul. 68-489, 1968-2 CB 210, for grants to organizations not exempt under section 501(c)(3). That ruling permits a section 501(c)(3) organization to distribute funds to organizations not exempt under section 501(c)(3) if the grantor organization ensures use of the funds for section 501(c)(3) purposes by limiting distributions to specific projects in furtherance of its own exempt purposes, retains control and discretion as to the use of the funds, and maintains records establishing that the funds were used for section 501(c)(3) purposes. The commenter's proposal is outside the scope of this regulations project, but it may be considered in future guidance.

    Equivalency Determinations for Domestic Grantees and Foreign Government Grantees

    One commenter requested that the equivalency determination procedures be made expressly applicable to grantees in the U.S. as well as foreign grantees if the domestic grantee is not required to obtain a determination from the IRS or the determination is pending with the IRS. Another commenter requested clarification that a foundation could use the same procedures to determine the status of grantees that are foreign governments, agencies or instrumentalities of foreign governments, or international organizations (which are treated as section 509(a)(1) organizations under § 53.4945-5(a)(4)(iii), even if they are not described in section 501(c)(3), so long as the grant is made exclusively for charitable purposes). Both of these suggestions are beyond the scope of this regulations project but may be considered in future guidance.

    Parallel Changes to Similar Regulations

    Commenters suggested that the Treasury Department and the IRS make corresponding changes to other regulations that provide for determinations similar to equivalency determinations. Section 53.4945-6(c)(2) requires generally that a grant made to an organization not described in section 501(c)(3) be maintained in a separate charitable fund, unless made to a foreign organization that in the reasonable judgment of a foundation manager is described in section 501(c)(3) (other than section 509(a)(4)). Section 1.1441-9 sets forth exemptions from withholding of tax on exempt income of foreign tax-exempt organizations, and allows a withholding agent to accept an opinion from a U.S. counsel concluding that a foreign organization is described in section 501(c)(3) and is not a private foundation, supported by an affidavit of the organization. For more than 20 years, under Rev. Proc. 92-94, a foundation has been able to make the reasonable judgment required by § 53.4945-6(c)(2) by following the same procedure for making a good faith determination under §§ 53.4942(a)-3(a)(6) and 53.4945-5(a)(5). The Treasury Department and the IRS anticipate that any revised version of that revenue procedure will continue to provide that foundations may meet the requirements of § 53.4945-6(c)(2) by meeting the requirements of §§ 53.4942(a)-3(a)(6) and 53.4945-5(a)(5). The suggested changes to § 1.1441-9 are beyond the scope of this regulations project, but may be considered in future guidance.

    Amendments to Regulations Conforming to Statutory and Regulatory Changes

    The final regulations also include several amendments to conform the regulations to prior statutory changes. Specifically, changes were made to §§ 53.4942(a)-3(a)(2)(i), 53.4942(a)-3(a)(6)(i), 53.4945-5(a)(1), 53.4945-5(a)(5)(i), 53.4945-5(a)(6)(ii), and 53.4945-5(b)(5). Section 4945(d)(4) was amended in 1984 to treat exempt operating foundations under section 4940(d)(2) as organizations that may receive grants for which expenditure responsibility is not required. Sections 4942 and 4945(d)(4) were amended in 2006 to eliminate certain section 509(a)(3) supporting organizations from the class of organizations that may receive distributions treated as qualifying distributions and that may receive grants for which expenditure responsibility is not required. Changes to conform the regulations to these statutory changes were made in §§ 53.4942(a)-3(a)(6)(i) and 53.4945-5(a)(5)(i) of the proposed regulations, and the changes to the other parts of §§ 53.4942(a)-3 and 53.4945-5 are being made in the final regulations for consistency. Similarly, for purposes of consistency with the changes in the proposed regulations being implemented in these final regulations, § 53.4945-5(b)(5) is being updated to allow written advice from a qualified tax practitioner for purposes of this provision, as well as grantee affidavits and opinions of counsel of the grantee, which continue to be permitted for the purposes of § 53.4945-5(b)(5).

    Effective/Applicability Date and Transition Relief

    The final regulations apply generally to distributions made after the date of publication of this Treasury decision in the Federal Register. However, a good faith determination may continue to be made in accordance with the prior regulations for any distribution to a foreign organization within 90 days after such date. Also, a foundation that has made a written commitment on or before the date of publication of these final regulations in the Federal Register may make distributions to the foreign organization, in fulfillment of that commitment and pursuant to a determination made in good faith in accordance with the prior regulations, for up to five years from the date of publication.

    Availability of IRS Documents

    For copies of recently issued revenue procedures, revenue rulings, notices and other guidance published in the Internal Revenue Bulletin, please visit the IRS Web site at http://www.irs.gov or contact the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402.

    Special Analyses

    Certain IRS regulations, including these, are exempt from the requirements of Executive Order 12866, as supplemented and reaffirmed by Executive Order 13563. Therefore, a regulatory impact assessment is not required. It also has been determined that section 553(b) of the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. chapter 5) does not apply to these regulations.

    It is hereby certified that the collection of information in these regulations will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The collection of information is in §§ 53.4942(a)-3(a)(6) and 53.4945-5(a)(5) and is part of the collection of information for Form 990-PF. The equivalency determination process set forth in these regulations provides foundations with an optional procedure for determining that foreign organizations are qualifying public charities. The Treasury Department and the IRS believe that the economic impact of the proposed regulations on grantors making equivalency determinations has already been a reduction in cost of obtaining written tax advice, by expanding the class of practitioners whose written advice may form the basis of good faith determinations. The final regulations finalize this policy. The final regulations continue to permit grantee affidavits to be used in making good faith determinations under the general rule (although without the same level of reliance as under the special rule) and it is expected that affidavits will continue to be used for such purpose with small grants. Therefore, a Regulatory Flexibility Analysis under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. chapter 6) is not required. Pursuant to section 7805(f) of the Internal Revenue Code, the notice of proposed rulemaking preceding these regulations was submitted to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration for comment on its impact on small businesses, and no comment was received.

    Drafting Information

    The principal author of these regulations is Ward L. Thomas of the Office of Associate Chief Counsel (Tax-Exempt and Government Entities). However, other personnel from the Treasury Department and the IRS participated in their development.

    List of Subjects in 26 CFR Part 53

    Excise taxes, Foundations.

    Adoption of Amendments to the Regulations

    Accordingly, 26 CFR part 53 is amended as follows:

    PART 53—FOUNDATION AND SIMILAR EXCISE TAXES Paragraph 1. The authority citation for part 53 continues to read in part as follows: Authority:

    26 U.S.C. 7805 * * *

    Par. 2. Section 53.4942 (a)-3 is amended by: 1. Revising paragraphs (a)(2) introductory text, (a)(2)(i), and (a)(6). 2. Adding paragraph (f).

    The revisions and addition read as follows:

    § 53.4942(a)-3 Qualifying distributions defined.

    (a) * * *

    (2) Definition. The term “qualifying distribution” means:

    (i) Any amount (including program related investments, as defined in section 4944(c), and reasonable and necessary administrative expenses) paid to accomplish one or more purposes described in section 170(c)(1) or (2)(B), other than any contribution to:

    (a) A private foundation which is not an operating foundation (as defined in section 4942(j)(3)), except as provided in paragraph (c) of this section;

    (b) An organization controlled (directly or indirectly) by the contributing private foundation or one or more disqualified persons with respect to such foundation, except as provided in paragraph (c) of this section; or

    (c) An organization described in section 4942(g)(4)(A)(i) or (ii), if paid by a private foundation that is not an operating foundation;

    (6) Certain foreign organizations—(i) In general. A distribution for purposes described in section 170(c)(2)(B) to a foreign organization, which has not received a ruling or determination letter that it is an organization described in section 509(a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) or in section 4942 (j)(3), will be treated as a distribution made to an organization described in section 509(a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) (other than an organization described in section 4942(g)(4)(A)(i) or (ii)) or in section 4942(j)(3) if the distributing foundation has made a good faith determination that the donee organization is an organization described in section 509(a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) (other than an organization described in section 4942(g)(4)(A)(i) or (ii)) or in section 4942(j)(3). A determination ordinarily will be considered a good faith determination if the determination is based on current written advice received from a qualified tax practitioner concluding that the donee is an organization described in section 509(a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) (other than an organization described in section 4942(g)(4)(A)(i) or (ii)) or in section 4942(j)(3), and if the foundation reasonably relied in good faith on the written advice in accordance with the requirements of § 1.6664-4(c)(1) of this chapter. The written advice must set forth sufficient facts concerning the operations and support of the donee organization for the Internal Revenue Service to determine that the donee organization would be likely to qualify as an organization described in section 509(a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) (other than an organization described in section 4942(g)(4)(A)(i) or (ii)) or in section 4942(j)(3) as of the date of the written advice. For purposes of this section, except as provided in the next sentence, written advice will be considered current if, as of the date of distribution, the relevant law on which the advice is based has not changed since the date of the written advice and the factual information on which the advice is based is from the donee's current or prior taxable year (or annual accounting period if the donee does not have a taxable year for United States federal tax purposes). Written advice that a donee met the public support test under section 170(b)(1)(A)(vi) or section 509(a)(2) for a test period of five years will be treated as current for purposes of distributions to the donee during the two taxable years (or, as applicable, annual accounting periods) of the donee immediately following the end of the five-year test period.

    (ii) Definitions. For purposes of this paragraph (a)(6)—

    (a) The term “foreign organization” means any organization that is not described in section 170(c)(2)(A).

    (b) The term “qualified tax practitioner” means an attorney, a certified public accountant, or an enrolled agent, within the meaning of 31 CFR 10.2 and 10.3, who is subject to the requirements in 31 CFR part 10.

    (f) Effective/applicability date and transition relief. Paragraphs (a)(2)(i) and (a)(6) of this section are effective on and apply with respect to distributions made after September 25, 2015. However, foundations may continue to rely on the provisions of paragraph (a)(6) of this section as contained in 26 CFR part 53, revised April 1, 2015, with respect to distributions made on or before December 24, 2015 pursuant to a good faith determination made in accordance with such provisions. Also, foundations may continue to rely on the provisions of paragraph (a)(6) of this section as contained in 26 CFR part 53, revised April 1, 2015, with respect to distributions pursuant to a written commitment made on or before September 25, 2015 and pursuant to a good faith determination made on or before such date in accordance with such provisions if the committed amount is distributed within five years of such date.

    Par. 3. Section 53.4945-5 is amended by: 1. Revising paragraphs (a)(1), (a)(5), (a)(6)(ii), and (b)(5). 2. Adding paragraph (f)(3).

    The revisions and addition read as follows:

    § 53.4945-5 Grants to organizations.

    (a) Grants to nonpublic organizations—(1) In general. Under section 4945(d)(4) the term “taxable expenditure” includes any amount paid or incurred by a private foundation as a grant to an organization (other than an organization described in section 509(a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) (other than an organization described in section 4942(g)(4)(A)(i) or (ii)) or in section 4940(d)(2)), unless the private foundation exercises expenditure responsibility with respect to such grant in accordance with section 4945(h). However, the granting foundation does not have to exercise expenditure responsibility with respect to amounts granted to organizations described in section 4945(f).

    (5) Certain foreign organizations—(i) In general. If a private foundation makes a grant to a foreign organization, which does not have a ruling or determination letter that it is an organization described in section 509(a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) or in section 4940(d)(2), the grant will nonetheless be treated as a grant made to an organization described in section 509(a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) (other than an organization described in section 4942(g)(4)(A)(i) or (ii)) or in section 4940(d)(2) if the grantor private foundation has made a good faith determination that the grantee organization is an organization described in section 509(a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) (other than an organization described in section 4942(g)(4)(A)(i) or (ii)) or in section 4940(d)(2). A determination ordinarily will be considered a good faith determination if the determination is based on current written advice received from a qualified tax practitioner concluding that the grantee is an organization described in section 509(a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) (other than an organization described in section 4942(g)(4)(A)(i) or (ii)) or in section 4940(d)(2), and if the foundation reasonably relied in good faith on the written advice in accordance with the requirements of § 1.6664-4(c)(1) of this chapter. The written advice must set forth sufficient facts concerning the operations and support of the grantee organization for the Internal Revenue Service to determine that the grantee organization would be likely to qualify as an organization described in section 509(a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) (other than an organization described in section 4942(g)(4)(A)(i) or (ii)) or in section 4940(d)(2) as of the date of the written advice. For purposes of these rules, except as provided in the next sentence, written advice will be considered current if, as of the date of the grant payment, the relevant law on which the advice is based has not changed since the date of the written advice and the factual information on which the advice is based is from the grantee's current or prior taxable year (or annual accounting period if the grantee does not have a taxable year for United States federal tax purposes). Written advice that a grantee met the public support test under section 170(b)(1)(A)(vi) or section 509(a)(2) for a test period of five years will be treated as current for purposes of grant payments to the grantee during the two taxable years (or, as applicable, annual accounting periods) of the grantee immediately following the end of the five-year test period. See paragraphs (b)(5) and (6) of this section for additional rules relating to foreign organizations.

    (ii) Definitions. For purposes of this paragraph (a)(5)—

    (a) The term “foreign organization” means any organization that is not described in section 170(c)(2)(A).

    (b) The term “qualified tax practitioner” means an attorney, a certified public accountant, or an enrolled agent, within the meaning of 31 CFR 10.2 and 10.3, who is subject to the requirements in 31 CFR part 10.

    (6) * * *

    (ii) To governmental agencies. If a private foundation makes a grant to an organization described in section 170(c)(1) and such grant is earmarked for use by another organization, the granting foundation need not exercise expenditure responsibility with respect to such grant if the section 170(c)(1) organization satisfies the Commissioner in advance that:

    (a) Its grantmaking program is in furtherance of a purpose described in section 170(c)(2)(B), and

    (b) The section 170(c)(1) organization exercises “expenditure responsibility” in a manner that would satisfy this section if it applied to such section 170(c)(1) organization. However, with respect to such grant, the granting foundation must make the reports required by section 4945(h)(3) and paragraph (d) of this section, unless such grant is earmarked for use by an organization described in section 509(a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) (other than an organization described in section 4942(g)(4)(A)(i) or (ii)), or in section 4940(d)(2).

    (b) * * *

    (5) Certain grants to foreign organizations. With respect to a grant to a foreign organization (other than an organization described in section 509(a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) (other than an organization described in section 4942(g)(4)(A)(i) or (ii)) or in section 4940(d)(2) or treated as so described pursuant to paragraph (a)(4) or (5) of this section), paragraph (b)(3)(iv) or (b)(4)(iv) of this section shall be deemed satisfied if the agreement referred to in paragraph (b)(3) or (4) of this section imposes restrictions on the use of the grant substantially equivalent to the limitations imposed on a domestic private foundation under section 4945(d). Such restrictions may be phrased in appropriate terms under foreign law or custom and ordinarily will be considered sufficient if an affidavit or opinion of counsel (of the grantor or grantee) or written advice of a qualified tax practitioner is obtained stating that, under foreign law or custom, the agreement imposes restrictions on the use of the grant substantially equivalent to the restrictions imposed on a domestic private foundation under paragraph (b)(3) or (4) of this section.

    (f) * * *

    (3) Effective/applicability date of paragraphs (a)(1), (a)(5), (a)(6)(ii), and (b)(5) and transition relief. Paragraphs (a)(1), (a)(5), (a)(6)(ii), and (b)(5) of this section are effective on and apply with respect to grants paid after September 25, 2015. However, foundations may continue to rely on paragraph (a)(5) as contained in 26 CFR part 53, revised April 1, 2015, with respect to grants paid on or before December 24, 2015 pursuant to a good faith determination made in accordance with such provisions. Also, foundations may continue to rely on paragraph (a)(5) as contained in 26 CFR part 53, revised April 1, 2015, with respect to grants paid pursuant to a written commitment made on or before September 25, 2015 and pursuant to a good faith determination made on or before such date in accordance with such provisions if the committed amount is paid out within five years of such date.

    John M. Dalrymple, Deputy Commissioner for Services and Enforcement. Approved: September 16, 2015. Mark J. Mazur, Assistant Secretary of the Treasury (Tax Policy).
    [FR Doc. 2015-24346 Filed 9-23-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4830-01-P
    PENSION BENEFIT GUARANTY CORPORATION 29 CFR Parts 4000, 4041A, and 4281 RIN 1212-AB28 Multiemployer Plans; Electronic Filing Requirements; Correction AGENCY:

    Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation.

    ACTION:

    Final rule; correction.

    SUMMARY:

    The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) published in the Federal Register of September 17, 2015 (80 FR 55742) a final rule to amend its regulations to require electronic filing of certain multiemployer notices. This document corrects two inadvertent errors in the amendatory language.

    DATES:

    Effective October 19, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Catherine B. Klion ([email protected]), Assistant General Counsel for Regulatory Affairs, or Donald McCabe ([email protected]), Attorney, Office of the General Counsel, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, 1200 K Street NW., Washington, DC 20005-4026; 202-326-4024. (TTY/TDD users may call the Federal relay service toll-free at 1-800-877-8339 and ask to be connected to 202-326-4024.)

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Correction

    The following corrections are made to FR Doc. 2015-23361, published at page 55742 in the issue of September 17, 2015 (80 FR 55742):

    1. On page 55745, column 2, amendatory instruction 2 and its amendatory text are corrected to read as follows: 2. In § 4000.3, add paragraph (b)(4) to read as follows:
    § 4000.3 What methods of filing may I use?

    (b) * * *

    (4) When making filings to PBGC under parts 4041A, 4245, and 4281 of this chapter (except for notices of benefit reductions and notices of restoration of benefits under part 4281), you must submit the information required under these parts electronically in accordance with the instructions on the PBGC's Web site, except as otherwise provided by the PBGC.

    § 4281.3 [Corrected]
    2. On page 55745, column 2, instruction 7, in revised paragraph (b), “4281.43(e)” is corrected to read “4281.43(c)”.
    Issued in Washington, DC, this 21st day of September 2015. Catherine B. Klion, Assistant General Counsel for Regulatory Affairs, Office of the General Counsel.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24343 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7709-02-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 100 [Docket Number USCG-2015-0400] RIN 1625-AA08 Special Local Regulations; Temporary Change for Recurring Marine Event in the Fifth Coast Guard District AGENCY:

    Coast Guard, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Temporary final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Coast Guard is temporarily changing the enforcement periods of special local regulations for a recurring marine event in the Fifth Coast Guard District. These regulations apply to the Ocean City Maryland Offshore Grand Prix, a recurring marine event, which will take place this year on October 3-4, 2015. Special local regulations are necessary to provide for the safety of life on navigable waters during the event. This action is intended to restrict vessel traffic in a portion of the North Atlantic Ocean near Ocean City, MD, during the event.

    DATES:

    This rule is effective from October 3, 2015, to October 4, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Documents mentioned in this preamble are part of docket [USCG-2015-0400]. To view documents mentioned in this preamble as being available in the docket, go to http://www.regulations.gov, type the docket number in the “SEARCH” box and click “SEARCH.” Click on Open Docket Folder on the line associated with this rulemaking.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    If you have questions on this rule, call or email Mr. Ronald Houck, U.S. Coast Guard Sector Baltimore, MD; telephone 410-576-2674, email [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Table of Acronyms DHS Department of Homeland Security FR Federal Register NPRM Notice of Proposed Rulemaking A. Regulatory History and Information

    This marine event is regulated at 33 CFR 100.501. On July 16, 2015, we published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) entitled “Special Local Regulations; Temporary Change for Recurring Marine Event in the Fifth Coast Guard District” in the Federal Register (80 FR 42069). We received no comments on the proposed rule. No public meeting was requested, and none was held.

    Under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3), the Coast Guard finds that good cause exists for making this rule effective less than 30 days after publication in the Federal Register. The Coast Guard received late notice from event planners of the date change. Because of this late notice, it is impracticable to publish the final rule more than thirty days before the event. In addition, it is unnecessary to have a thirty day delayed effective date for this rule, because the change will not meaningfully effect waterways users. This event occurs every year and is well known in the community. During the comment period regarding the changed date for the NPRM, no comments were received. The Coast Guard will provide advance notifications to users of the affected waterways of the regulated area via marine information broadcasts and local notice to mariners.

    B. Basis and Purpose

    The legal basis and authorities for this rulemaking establishing a special local regulation are found in 33 U.S.C. 1233, which authorize the Coast Guard to establish and define special local regulations. The Captain of the Port Baltimore is establishing a special local regulation for the waters of the North Atlantic Ocean, near Ocean City, MD, to protect event participants, spectators and transiting vessels during the Ocean City Maryland Offshore Grand Prix.

    C. Discussion of Comments, Changes and the Final Rule

    The Coast Guard received no comments in response to the NPRM. No public meeting was requested and none was held.

    Through this regulation, the Coast Guard is temporarily changing the enforcement period of special local regulations for a recurring marine event in the Fifth Coast Guard District. This rule changes the enforcement periods for the “Ocean City Maryland Offshore Grand Prix” marine event that is listed at 33 CFR 100.501, Table to § 100.501. This regulation temporarily changes the enforcement periods for this marine event for 2015 only. The enforcement dates for 2015 are October 3rd and 4th, 2015.

    D. Regulatory Analyses

    We developed this rule after considering numerous statutes and executive orders related to rulemaking. Below we summarize our analyses based on these statutes and executive orders.

    1. Regulatory Planning and Review

    This rule is not a significant regulatory action under section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866, Regulatory Planning and Review, as supplemented by Executive Order 13563, Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review, and does not require an assessment of potential costs and benefits under section 6(a)(3) of Executive Order 12866 or under section 1 of Executive Order 13563. The Office of Management and Budget has not reviewed it under those Orders.

    The economic impact of this rule is not significant for the following reasons: The regulated area will be in effect from 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on October 3, 2015 and from 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on October 4, 2015, the regulated area has been narrowly tailored to impose the least impact on general navigation, yet provide the level of safety deemed necessary, and advance notifications will be made to the maritime community via marine information broadcasts and local notices to mariners, so mariners can adjust their plans accordingly. Additionally, this rulemaking does not change the permanent regulated areas that have been published in 33 CFR 100.501, Table to § 100.501. For the above reasons, the Coast Guard does not anticipate any significant economic impact.

    2. Impact on Small Entities

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (RFA), 5 U.S.C. 601-612, as amended, requires federal agencies to consider the potential impact of regulations on small entities during rulemaking. The term “small entities” comprises small businesses, not-for-profit organizations that are independently owned and operated and are not dominant in their fields, and governmental jurisdictions with populations of less than 50,000. The Coast Guard received 0 comments from the Small Business Administration on this rule. The Coast Guard certifies under 5 U.S.C. 605(b) that this rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

    This rule may affect the following entities, some of which may be small entities: The owners or operators of vessels intending to operate or transit through or within, or anchor in, the area where the marine event is being held.

    This safety zone will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities for the reasons stated under paragraph D.1., Regulatory Planning and Review.

    3. Assistance for Small Entities

    Under section 213(a) of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996 (Pub. L. 104-121), we want to assist small entities in understanding this rule. If the rule would affect your small business, organization, or governmental jurisdiction and you have questions concerning its provisions or options for compliance, please contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT, above.

    Small businesses may send comments on the actions of Federal employees who enforce, or otherwise determine compliance with, Federal regulations to the Small Business and Agriculture Regulatory Enforcement Ombudsman and the Regional Small Business Regulatory Fairness Boards. The Ombudsman evaluates these actions annually and rates each agency's responsiveness to small business. If you wish to comment on actions by employees of the Coast Guard, call 1-888-REG-FAIR (1-888-734-3247). The Coast Guard will not retaliate against small entities that question or complain about this rule or any policy or action of the Coast Guard.

    4. Collection of Information

    This rule will not call for a new collection of information under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520).

    5. Federalism

    A rule has implications for federalism under Executive Order 13132, Federalism, if it has a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government. We have analyzed this rule under that Order and determined that this rule does not have implications for federalism.

    6. Protest Activities

    The Coast Guard respects the First Amendment rights of protesters. Protesters are asked to contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section to coordinate protest activities so that your message can be received without jeopardizing the safety or security of people, places or vessels.

    7. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

    The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1531-1538) requires Federal agencies to assess the effects of their discretionary regulatory actions. In particular, the Act addresses actions that may result in the expenditure by a State, local, or tribal government, in the aggregate, or by the private sector of $100,000,000 (adjusted for inflation) or more in any one year. Though this rule will not result in such an expenditure, we do discuss the effects of this rule elsewhere in this preamble.

    8. Taking of Private Property

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

    9. Civil Justice Reform

    This rule meets applicable standards in sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) of Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform, to minimize litigation, eliminate ambiguity, and reduce burden.

    10. Protection of Children

    We have analyzed this rule under Executive Order 13045, Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks. This rule is not an economically significant rule and does not create an environmental risk to health or risk to safety that may disproportionately affect children.

    11. Indian Tribal Governments

    This rule does not have tribal implications under Executive Order 13175, Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments, because it does not have a substantial direct effect on one or more Indian tribes, on the relationship between the Federal Government and Indian tribes, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities between the Federal Government and Indian tribes.

    12. Energy Effects

    This action is not a “significant energy action” under Executive Order 13211, Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use.

    13. Technical Standards

    This rule does not use technical standards. Therefore, we did not consider the use of voluntary consensus standards.

    14. Environment

    We have analyzed this rule under Department of Homeland Security Management Directive 023-01 and Commandant Instruction M16475.lD, which guide the Coast Guard in complying with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) (42 U.S.C. 4321-4370f), and have determined that this action is one of a category of actions that do not individually or cumulatively have a significant effect on the human environment. This rule involves implementation of regulations within 33 CFR part 100 applicable to organized marine events on the navigable waters of the United States that could negatively impact the safety of waterway users and shore side activities in the event area. The category of water activities includes but is not limited to sail boat regattas, boat parades, power boat racing, swimming events, crew racing, canoe and sail board racing. This rule is categorically excluded from further review under paragraph 34(h) of Figure 2-1 of the Commandant Instruction. An environmental analysis checklist supporting this determination and a Categorical Exclusion Determination are available in the docket where indicated under ADDRESSES. We seek any comments or information that may lead to the discovery of a significant environmental impact from this rule.

    List of Subjects in 33 CFR Part 100

    Marine safety, Navigation (water), Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Waterways.

    For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Coast Guard amends 33 CFR part 100 as follows:

    PART 100—SAFETY OF LIFE ON NAVIGABLE WATERS 1. The authority citation for part 100 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    33 U.S.C. 1233.

    2. In § 100.501, amend the Table to § 100.501 by suspending line No. (b.)21 and adding line No. (b.)24 to read as follows:
    § 100.501 Special Local Regulations; Marine Events in the Fifth Coast Guard District.

    Table to § 100.501

    [All coordinates listed in the Table to § 100.501 reference Datum NAD 1983] No. Date Event Sponsor Location *         *         *         *         *         *         * (b.) Coast Guard Sector Baltimore—COTP Zone *         *         *         *         *         *         * 24. October 3 and 4, 2015 Ocean City Maryland Offshore Grand Prix Offshore Performance Assn. Racing, LLC The waters of the North Atlantic Ocean commencing at a point on the shoreline at latitude 38°25′42″ N., longitude 075°03′06″ W.; thence east southeast to latitude 38°25′30″ N., longitude 075°02′12″ W., thence south southwest parallel to the Ocean City shoreline to latitude 38°19′12″ N., longitude 075°03′48″ W.; thence west northwest to the shoreline at latitude 38°19′30″ N., longitude 075°05′00″ W. *         *         *         *         *         *         *
    Dated: August 27, 2015. Lonnie P. Harrison, Jr., Captain, U.S. Coast Guard, Captain of the Port Baltimore.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24323 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-04-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 117 [Docket No. USCG-2015-0423] RIN 1625-AA09 Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Rancocas Creek, Centerton, NJ AGENCY:

    Coast Guard, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Coast Guard is changing the regulation that governs the operation of the SR#38 Bridge in Centerton (Burlington County Route 635) over Rancocas Creek, mile 7.8, at Mt. Laurel, Westampton and Willingboro Townships in Burlington County, NJ. The new rule will change the current regulation and allow the bridge to remain in the closed position for the passage of vessels. There have been no requests for openings since the early 1990's. This rule also reflects a name change.

    DATES:

    This rule is effective October 26, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Documents mentioned in this preamble are part of docket USCG-2015-0423. To view documents mentioned in this preamble as being available in the docket, go to http://www.regulations.gov, type the docket number in the “SEARCH” box and click “SEARCH.” Click on Open Docket Folder on the line associated with this rulemaking.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    If you have questions on this rule, call or email Mr. Jim Rousseau, Fifth Coast Guard District Bridge Administration Division, Coast Guard; telephone 757-398-6557, email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Table of Acronyms CFR Code of Federal Regulations DHS Department of Homeland Security FR Federal Register NPRM Notice of Proposed Rulemaking § Section Symbol U.S.C. United States Code A. Regulatory History and Information

    On July 6, 2015, we published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) entitled, “Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Rancocas Creek, Centerton, NJ” in the Federal Register (80 FR 38417). We received no comments on the proposed rule. No public meeting was requested, and none was held.

    B. Basis and Purpose

    The current operating schedule for the SR#38 bridge is set out in 33 CFR 117.745(b) which allows the SR#38 Bridge to operate as follows: From April 1 through October 31 open on signal from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. From November 1 through March 31 from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. open on signal if at least 24 hours notice is given. Year round from 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. need not open for the passage of vessels.

    The bridge owner, County of Burlington, NJ requested a change in the operation regulation for the SR#38 Bridge, mile 7.8, across Rancocas Creek in Mt. Laurel, NJ and that its name is changed to what it is known locally. The County of Burlington provided information to the Coast Guard about the lack of any openings of the draw spans dating back to the early 1990's. The bridge is currently closed to navigation and vehicular traffic due to emergency repairs and emergency inspections since May 2015. The last requested opening was in the early 1990's as an emergency request. There have been monthly openings as per maintenance requirements. The Coast Guard will allow the above mentioned Bridge to remain in the closed to navigation position in accordance with 33 CFR 117.39. In the closed to navigation position, the bridge need not open for the passage of vessels.

    In the closed-to-navigation position, the SR#38 Bridge has vertical clearances of six feet above mean high water. Vessels which can safely transit under the bridge in the closed to navigation position can do so at any time.

    C. Discussion of Comments, Changes and the Final Rule

    In order to align the operating schedule of the SR#38 bridge with observed marine traffic the proposed change amended the regulation by adding a paragraph (c) to state “that the bridge need not open.” The lack of requests for vessel openings of the drawbridge for over 20 years illustrates that the vessels that use this waterway can safely navigate while the bridge is in the closed-to-navigation position. The current regulation also incorrectly identifies the bridge as the SR#38 Bridge. The proposed change would change the name to the Centerton County Route 635 Bridge. All language in existing paragraph (b) would remain the same except for the removal of the SR#38 bridge reference.

    While the proposed rule allowed the bridge to remain closed to navigation, it did not alleviate the bridge owner of his responsibility under 33 CFR 117.7.

    The Coast Guard received no comments in response to the notice of proposed rulemaking. As a result, no changes have been made to this final rule.

    D. Regulatory Analyses

    We developed this rule after considering numerous statutes and executive orders related to rulemaking. Below we summarize our analyses based on these statutes or executive orders.

    1. Regulatory Planning and Review

    This rule is not a significant regulatory action under section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866, Regulatory Planning and Review, as supplemented by Executive Order 13563, Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review, and does not require an assessment of potential costs and benefits under section 6(a)(3) of Order 12866 or under section 1 of Executive Order 13563. The Office of Management and Budget has not reviewed it under those Orders. Based on County of Burlington bridge tender logs, there will not be any vessels impacted by this proposed change. No bridge openings have been requested in over 20 years.

    2. Impact on Small Entities

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (RFA), 5 U.S.C. 601-612, as amended, requires federal agencies to consider the potential impact of regulations on small entities during rulemaking. The term “small entities” comprises small businesses, not-for-profit organizations that are independently owned and operated and are not dominant in their fields, and governmental jurisdictions with populations of less than 50,000. The Coast Guard received no comments from the Small Business Administration on this rule. This rule would affect the following entities, some of which might be small entities: owners and operators of vessels intending to transit in that portion of Rancocas Creek that cannot transit under the Centerton Bridge during mean high water. Due to the fact that there have been no requests for openings in nearly 20 years, this final rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The Coast Guard certifies under 5 U.S.C. 605(b) that this rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

    3. Assistance for Small Entities

    Under section 213(a) of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996 (Pub. L. 104-121), we want to assist small entities in understanding this final rule. If the rule affects your small business, organization, or governmental jurisdiction and you have questions concerning its provisions or options for compliance, please contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT, above.

    Small businesses may send comments on the actions of Federal employees who enforce, or otherwise determine compliance with, Federal regulations to the Small Business and Agriculture Regulatory Enforcement Ombudsman and the Regional Small Business Regulatory Fairness Boards. The Ombudsman evaluates these actions annually and rates each agency's responsiveness to small business. If you wish to comment on actions by employees of the Coast Guard, call 1-888-REG-FAIR (1-888-734-3247). The Coast Guard will not retaliate against small entities that question or complain about this rule or any policy or action of the Coast Guard. The Coast Guard will not retaliate against small entities that question or complain about this final rule or any policy or action of the Coast Guard.

    4. Collection of Information

    This rule calls for no new collection of information under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520).

    5. Federalism

    A rule has implications for federalism under Executive Order 13132, Federalism, if it has a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government. We have analyzed this rule under that Order and have determined that it does not have implications for federalism.

    6. Protest Activities

    The Coast Guard respects the First Amendment rights of protesters. Protesters are asked to contact the person listed in the For Further Information Contact section to coordinate protest activities so that your message can be received without jeopardizing the safety or security of people, places or vessels.

    7. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

    The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1531-1538) requires Federal agencies to assess the effects of their discretionary regulatory actions. In particular, the Act addresses actions that may result in the expenditure by a State, local, or tribal government, in the aggregate, or by the private sector of $100,000,000 (adjusted for inflation) or more in any one year. Though this rule will not result in such an expenditure, we do discuss the effects of this rule elsewhere in this preamble.

    8. Taking of Private Property

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

    9. Civil Justice Reform

    This rule meets applicable standards in sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) of Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform, to minimize litigation, eliminate ambiguity, and reduce burden.

    10. Protection of Children

    We have analyzed this rule under Executive Order 13045, Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks. This rule is not an economically significant rule and does not create an environmental risk to health or risk to safety that might disproportionately affect children.

    11. Indian Tribal Governments

    This rule does not have tribal implications under Executive Order 13175, Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments, because it does not have a substantial direct effect on one or more Indian tribes, on the relationship between the Federal Government and Indian tribes, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities between the Federal Government and Indian tribes.

    12. Energy Effects

    This action is not a “significant energy action” under Executive Order 13211, Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use.

    13. Technical Standards

    This rule does not use technical standards. Therefore, we did not consider the use of voluntary consensus standards.

    14. Environment

    We have analyzed this rule under Department of Homeland Security Management Directive 023-01 and Commandant Instruction M16475.lD, which guides the Coast Guard in complying with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA)(42 U.S.C. 4321-4370f), and have concluded that this action is one of a category of actions that do not individually or cumulatively have a significant effect on the human environment. This rule simply promulgates the operating regulations or procedures for drawbridges. This rule is categorically excluded, under figure 2-1, paragraph (32)(e), of the Instruction.

    Under figure 2-1, paragraph (32)(e), of the Instruction, an environmental analysis checklist and a categorical exclusion determination are not required for this rule.

    List of Subjects in 33 CFR Part 117

    Bridges.

    For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Coast Guard amends 33 CFR part 117 as follows:

    PART 117—DRAWBRIDGE OPERATION REGULATIONS 1. The authority citation for part 117 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    33 U.S.C. 499; 33 CFR 1.05-1; Department of Homeland Security Delegation No. 0170.1.

    2. In § 117.745, revise paragraph (b) introductory text and add paragraph (c) to read as follows:
    § 117.745 Rancocas Creek.

    (b) The drawspan for the Riverside-Delanco/SR#543 Drawbridge, mile 1.3 at Riverside must operate as follows:

    * * *

    (c) The draw of the Centerton County Route 635 Bridge, mile 7.8, at Mt. Laurel, need not open for the passage of vessels.

    Dated: September 15, 2015. Robert J. Tarantino, Captain, United States Coast Guard, Acting Commander, Fifth Coast Guard District.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24333 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-04-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 117 [Docket No. USCG-2015-0767] Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Hood Canal, Port Gamble, WA AGENCY:

    Coast Guard, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice of deviation from drawbridge regulation; extension and modification.

    SUMMARY:

    The Coast Guard has extended and modified a temporary deviation from the operating schedule that governs the Hood Canal Floating Drawbridge across Hood Canal (Admiralty Inlet), mile 5.0, near Port Gamble, WA. The temporary deviation is now effective until 7 p.m. on October 19, 2015 and allows the bridge to open the draw span half-way, 300 feet; as opposed to all the way, which is 600 feet, with at least one hour's notice and only at or near slack tide.

    DATES:

    The temporary deviation published in the Federal Register on August 21, 2015 (80 FR 50768), and as modified herein, is effective from September 25, 2015, until 7 p.m. on October 19, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    The docket for this deviation, [USCG-2015-0767] is available at http://www.regulations.gov. Type the docket number in the “SEARCH” box and click “SEARCH.” Click on Open Docket Folder on the line associated with this deviation. 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.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    If you have questions on this temporary deviation, call or email Mr. Steven Fischer, Bridge Administrator, Thirteenth Coast Guard District; telephone 206-220-7282, email [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On August 21, 2015 the Coast Guard published a notice of temporary deviation at 80 FR 50768 from the operating schedule that governs the Hood Canal Floating Drawbridge across Hood Canal (Admiralty Inlet), mile 5.0, near Port Gamble, WA allowing the bridge to open the draw span half-way, 300 feet; as opposed to all the way, which is 600 feet. The Coast Guard is extending the end date of the previously published temporary deviation until 7 p.m. on October 19, 2015 as additional time is necessary for the Washington State Department of Transportation to complete the replacement of the bridge's draw span anchors. The temporary deviation is also modified to require opening with at least one hour's notice and only at or near slack tide. The former clarifies that the requirement for at least one hour's notice from the normal operating schedule is still in place during the temporary deviation and the latter is necessary to ensure the bridge does not move when opened during draw span anchor replacement. All other information provided in the temporary deviation published on August 21, 2015 at 80 FR 50768 continues to apply.

    Dated: September 22, 2015. Steven M. Fischer, Bridge Administrator, Thirteenth Coast Guard District.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24363 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-04-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R01-OAR-2014-0796; EPA-R01-OAR-2014-0862; A-1-FRL-9933-92-Region 1] Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; New Hampshire; Nonattainment New Source Review and Prevention of Significant Deterioration Program AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is approving a State Implementation Plan (SIP) revision submitted by the State of New Hampshire on November 15, 2012. This revision amends New Hampshire's Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) and Nonattainment New Source Review (NNSR) programs to make the programs consistent with the federal requirements. EPA is also conditionally approving a commitment from the state to submit revised regulations addressing three elements of EPA's PSD and NNSR programs that were not submitted with the November 15, 2012 submittal. EPA is also approving revisions to two definitions related to New Hampshire's permitting programs that were submitted on July 1, 2003. This action is being taken in accordance with the Clean Air Act.

    DATES:

    This rule is effective on October 26, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket Identification No. EPA-R01-OAR-2014-0796 and EPA-R01-OAR-2014-0862. All documents in the docket are listed on the www.regulations.gov Web site. Although listed in the index, some information is not publicly available, i.e., 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 at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA New England Regional Office, Office of Ecosystem Protection, Air Permits, Toxics, and Indoor Programs Unit, 5 Post Office Square—Suite 100, Boston, MA. EPA requests that if at all possible, you contact the contact listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section to schedule your inspection. The Regional Office's official hours of business are Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding legal holidays.

    Copies of the documents relevant to this action are also available for public inspection during normal business hours, by appointment at the Air Resources Division, Department of Environmental Services, 6 Hazen Drive, P.O. Box 95, Concord, NH 03302-0095.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Brendan McCahill, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA New England Regional Office, Office of Ecosystem Protection, Air Permits, Toxics, and Indoor Programs Unit, 5 Post Office Square—Suite 100, (mail code OEP05-2), Boston, MA 02109—3912, telephone number (617) 918-1652, Fax number (617) 918-0652, email [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Throughout this document whenever “we,” “us,” or “our” is used, we mean EPA.

    Organization of this document. The following outline is provided to aid in locating information in this preamble.

    I. Background and Purpose II. What action is EPA approving in this document? III. Final Action IV. Incorporation by Reference V. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews I. Background and Purpose

    On January 21, 2015 (80 FR 2860), EPA published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPR) for the State of New Hampshire. The NPR proposed to approve a November 15, 2012 SIP submittal revising the state's PSD program under PART Env-A 619, “Prevention of Significant Deterioration.” The NPR also proposed to approve a July 21, 2003 SIP submittal revising the following definitions under PART Env-A 101, “Definitions;” (1) “minor permit amendment,” and (2) “state permit to operate.”

    On April 24, 2015 EPA (80 FR 22956), EPA published a separate NPR for the state of New Hampshire. The NPR proposed to approve a separate portion of the November 15, 2012 SIP submittal revising the state's NNSR program under PART Env-A 618, “Nonattainment New Source Review” The NPR also reaffirmed EPA's January 21, 2015 proposed approval of the November 15, 2012 SIP submittal revising PART Env-A 619, “Prevention of Significant Deterioration” and the July 21, 2003 SIP submittal revising PART Env-A 101, “Definitions.”

    In addition, the April 24, 2015 NPR proposed to conditionally approve the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services' (NHDES) commitment to submit revised regulations addressing the following three provisions of the federal NNSR and PSD programs:

    • Provisions at 40 CFR 51.165(a)(5)(i) that state approval to construct shall not relieve any owner or operator of the responsibility to comply fully with applicable provisions of the plan and any other requirements under local, State or Federal law;

    • Provisions at 40 CFR 51.165(a)(6) and (a)(7) that meet the federal regulations applicable to projects at major stationary sources that are not major modifications based on the actual-to-projected actual test but have a “reasonable possibility” of resulting in a significant emission increase; and

    • Provisions at 40 CFR 51.166(q)(2)(iv) requiring notice of a draft PSD permit to state air agencies whose lands may be affected by emissions from the permitted source.

    The specific requirements for the two SIP submittals and the rationale for EPA's proposed actions are explained in the January 21, 2015 and April 24, 2015 NPRs and will not be restated here. EPA did not receive any public comments on the April 24, 2015 NPR.

    II. What action is EPA approving in this document?

    EPA is approving and incorporating into the SIP, PART Env-A 618, “Nonattainment New Source Review” and PART Env-A 619, “Prevention of Significant Deterioration” that New Hampshire submitted on November 15, 2012. EPA is approving New Hampshire's definitions of “minor permit amendment,” and “state permit to operate” under PART Env-A 101, “Definitions” into the SIP.

    Additionally, EPA is approving the commitment letter submitted by the NHDES on March 20, 2015, in which the NHDES committed to adopt revised NNSR and PSD regulations to address three provisions required by the federal NNSR and PSD program regulations. In that letter, NHDES committed to adopt these revisions no later than one year from the date of EPA's conditional approval, and to submit them to EPA for approval into the SIP.

    III. Final Action

    EPA is approving New Hampshire's July 23, 2003 SIP submittal amending the definitions of “minor permit amendment,” and “state permit to operate” under PART Env-A 101, “Definitions.”

    EPA is approving New Hampshire's November 15, 2012 SIP submittal amending PART Env-A 618, “Nonattainment New Source Review” and PART Env-A 619, “Prevention of Significant Deterioration.” With this action, PART Env-A 618 and PART Env-A 619 will supersede all other NNSR and PSD Program regulations currently approved in New Hampshire's SIP.

    EPA is conditionally approving NHDES's commitment to adopt and submit to EPA by September 26, 2016 revised NNSR and PSD regulations which address the following provisions of the federal NNSR and PSD program regulations:

    • Provisions at 40 CFR 51.165(a)(5)(i),

    • Provisions at 40 CFR 51.165(a)(6) and (a)(7), and

    • Provisions at 40 CFR 51.166(q)(2)(iv).

    If the State fails to do so, the State's commitment to address these three provisions will become a disapproval on that date. EPA will notify the State by letter that this action has occurred. At that time, this commitment will no longer be a part of the approved New Hampshire SIP. EPA subsequently will publish a document in the Federal Register notifying the public that the conditional approval automatically converted to disapproval. If the State meets its commitment, within the applicable time frame, the conditionally approved submission will remain a part of the SIP until EPA takes final action approving or disapproving the State's SIP submittal of the revised NNSR and PSD regulations which address the three provisions. If EPA approves the submittal, the three provisions will be fully approved in their entirety and will replace the conditional approval in the SIP.

    If the conditional approval is converted to a disapproval, such action will trigger EPA's authority to impose sanctions under section 110(m) of the CAA at the time EPA issues the final disapproval or on the date the State fails to meet its commitment. In the latter case, EPA will notify the State by letter that the conditional approval has been converted to a disapproval and that EPA's sanctions authority has been triggered. In addition, the final disapproval triggers the Federal implementation plan (FIP) requirement under section 110(c).

    IV. Incorporation by Reference

    In this rule, the EPA is finalizing regulatory text that includes incorporation by reference. In accordance with requirements of 1 CFR 51.5, the EPA is finalizing the incorporation by reference of PART Env-A 618, “Nonattainment New Source Review;” PART Env-A 619, “Prevention of Significant Deterioration;” and PART Env-A 101, “Definitions” described in the amendments to 40 CFR part 52 set forth below. The EPA has made, and will continue to make, these documents generally available electronically through www.regulations.gov and/or in hard copy at the appropriate EPA office (see the ADDRESSES section of this preamble for more information).

    V. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    Under the Clean Air Act, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP submission that complies with the provisions of the Act 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 Clean Air Act. 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 Orders 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011);

    • 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 (Publ. 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 Clean Air Act; 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, the SIP is not approved to apply on any Indian reservation land or in any other area where EPA or an Indian tribe has demonstrated that a tribe has jurisdiction. In those areas of Indian country, the rule does not have tribal implications and will not impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law as specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000).

    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).

    Under section 307(b)(1) of the Clean Air Act, petitions for judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by November 24, 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 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, Carbon monoxide, Incorporation by reference, Intergovernmental relations, Lead, Nitrogen dioxide, Ozone, Particulate matter, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Sulfur oxides, Volatile organic compounds.

    Dated: August 27, 2015. H. Curtis Spalding, Regional Administrator, EPA New England.

    Part 52 of chapter I, title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations is amended as follows:

    PART 52—[AMENDED] 1. The authority citation for part 52 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

    Subpart EE—New Hampshire 2. Section 52.1519 is amended by adding paragraph (a)(5) to read as follows:
    § 52.1519 Identification of plan—conditional approval.

    (a) * * *

    (5) On November 15, 2012, the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (NHDES) submitted to a request to amend New Hampshire's Chapter Env-A 600 “Statewide Permit System” as a revision to New Hampshire's State Implementation Plan. The amendment included revisions to the state's Nonattainment New Source Review (NNSR) and the Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) programs. On March 20, 2015, New Hampshire submitted a letter to EPA committing to adopt revised regulations which address the provisions at 40 CFR 51.165(a)(5)(i) and (a)(6) and (7) and 51.166(q)(2)(iv) required for EPA to fully approve New Hampshire's NNSR and PSD Programs.

    3. In § 52.1520, the table in paragraph (c) is amended by revising the entries for Env-A 100 “Organizational Rules: Definitions” and Env-A 600 “Statewide Permit System” to read as follows:
    § 52.1520 Identification of plan.

    (c) * * *

    EPA-Approved New Hampshire Regulations State citation Title/subject State effective date EPA approval date 1 Explanations Env-A 100 Organizational Rules: Definitions May 3, 2003 September 25, 2015 [Insert Federal Register citation] Adding definition of “Minor permit amendment” and “State permit to operate.” *         *         *         *         *         *         * Env-A 600 Statewide Permit System September 1, 2012 September 25, 2015 [Insert Federal Register citation] Approve revisions to Env-A 618 “NNSR” & Env-A 619 “PSD Program” and withdrawal of Env-A 610 and 622 “NNSR Program,” and Env-A 623 “PSD Program.” *         *         *         *         *         *         * 1 In order to determine the EPA effective date for a specific provision listed in this table, consult the Federal Register notice cited in this column for the particular provision.
    [FR Doc. 2015-23176 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R09-OAR-2015-0369; FRL-9933-22-Region 9] Revisions to the California State Implementation Plan, Monterey Bay Unified Air Pollution Control District, Ventura County Air Pollution Control District AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Direct final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking direct final action to approve revisions to the Monterey Bay Unified Air Pollution Control District (MBUAPCD) and the Ventura County Air Pollution Control District (VCAPCD) portions of the California State Implementation Plan (SIP). Under authority of the Clean Air Act (CAA or the Act), we are approving local rules that address volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions from the transfer of gasoline into vehicle fuel tanks, and from the transfer or dispensing of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG).

    DATES:

    These rules are effective on November 24, 2015 without further notice, unless EPA receives adverse comments by October 26, 2015. If we receive such comments, we will publish a timely withdrawal in the Federal Register to notify the public that this direct final rule will not take effect.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit comments, identified by docket number EPA-R09-OAR-2015-0369, by one of the following methods:

    1. Federal eRulemaking Portal: www.regulations.gov. Follow the on-line instructions.

    2. Email: [email protected].

    3. Mail or deliver: Andrew Steckel (Air-4), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region IX, 75 Hawthorne Street, San Francisco, CA 94105-3901.

    Instructions: All comments will be included in the public docket without change and may be made available online at www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided, unless the comment includes Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Information that you consider CBI or otherwise protected should be clearly identified as such and should not be submitted through www.regulations.gov or email. www.regulations.gov is an “anonymous access” system, and EPA will not know your identity or contact information unless you provide it in the body of your comment. If you send email directly to EPA, your email address will be automatically captured and included as part of the public comment. If EPA cannot read your comment due to technical difficulties and cannot contact you for clarification, EPA may not be able to consider your comment.

    Docket: Generally, documents in the docket for this action are available electronically at www.regulations.gov and in hard copy at EPA Region IX, 75 Hawthorne Street, San Francisco, California. While all documents in the docket are listed at www.regulations.gov, some information may be publicly available only at the hard copy location (e.g., copyrighted material, large maps), and some may not be publicly available in either location (e.g., CBI). To inspect the hard copy materials, please schedule an appointment during normal business hours with the contact listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    James Shears, EPA Region IX, (213) 244-1810, [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Throughout this document, “we,” “us” and “our” refer to EPA.

    Table of Contents I. The State's Submittal A. What rules did the State submit? B. Are there other versions of these rules? C. What is the purpose of the submitted rules? II. EPA's Evaluation and Action A. How is EPA evaluating the rules? B. Do the rules meet the evaluation criteria? C. EPA recommendations to further improve the rules D. Public comment and final action III. Incorporation by Reference IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews I. The State's Submittal A. What rules did the State submit?

    Table 1 lists the rules we are approving with the dates that they were adopted by the local air agencies and submitted by the California Air Resources Board.

    Table 1—Submitted Rules Local agency Rule # Rule title Adopted/
  • revised
  • Submitted
    MBUAPCD 1002 Transfer of Gaslone into Vehicle Fuel Tanks 12/17/14 04/07/15 VCAPCD 74.33 Liquefied Petroleum Gas Transfer or Dispensing 01/13/15 04/07/15

    On April 30, 2015, EPA determined that the submittals for MBUAPCD Rule 1002 and VCAPCD Rule 74.33 each met the completeness criteria in 40 CFR part 51 Appendix V, which must be met before formal EPA review.

    B. Are there other versions of these rules?

    We approved an earlier version of MBUAPCD Rule 1002 into the SIP on January 2, 2008 (73 FR 48). There is no previous version of VCAPCD Rule 74.33 in the SIP.

    C. What is the purpose of the submitted rules?

    Section 110(a) of the CAA requires States to submit regulations that control VOCs, oxides of nitrogen, particulate matter, and other air pollutants which harm human health and the environment. VOC rules were developed as part of the local agencies' programs to control these pollutants. MBUAPCD Rule 1002 is designed to limit emissions of VOCs from the transfer of gasoline into vehicle fuel tanks. In order to simplify the source testing section of the SIP-approved rule, the Stage II vapor recovery compliance test procedures are removed from the rule language, and instead the rule requires owners and operators of gasoline dispensing facilities to adhere to the applicable California Air Resources Board (CARB) Executive Order for gasoline testing procedures. The corresponding testing cycles are included in the gasoline facility permits. VCAPCD Rule 74.33 is designed to limit fugitive VOC emissions from the transfer or dispensing of LPG. It describes related equipment and operation requirements, leak detection and repair program requirements, and recordkeeping and reporting requirements. EPA's technical support documents (TSDs) have more information about the MBUAPCD and VCAPCD rules.

    II. EPA's Evaluation and Action A. How is EPA evaluating the rules?

    These rules must be enforceable (see section 110(a) of the Act) and must not relax existing requirements (see sections 110(l) and 193). EPA policy that we use to evaluate enforceability requirements consistently includes the Bluebook (“Issues Relating to VOC Regulation Cutpoints, Deficiencies, and Deviations,” EPA, May 25, 1988), the Little Bluebook (“Guidance Document for Correcting Common VOC & Other Rule Deficiencies,” EPA Region 9, August 21, 2001), and “State Implementation Plans; General Preamble for the Implementation of Title I of the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990,” 57 FR 13498 (April 16, 1992); 57 FR 18070 (April 28, 1992).

    B. Do the rules meet the evaluation criteria?

    We believe these rules are consistent with the relevant policy and guidance regarding enforceability and SIP relaxations. The TSDs have more information on our evaluation.

    C. EPA Recommendations to Further Improve the Rules

    Our TSD for MBUAPCD describes additional rule revisions that we recommend for the next time the local agency modifies the rule. We have no recommendations for VCAPCD Rule 74.33 at this time.

    D. Public Comment and Final Action

    As authorized in section 110(k)(3) of the Act, EPA is fully approving the submitted rules because we believe they fulfill all relevant requirements. We do not think anyone will object to this approval, so we are finalizing it without proposing it in advance. However, in the Proposed Rules section of this Federal Register, we are simultaneously proposing approval of the same submitted rules. If we receive adverse comments by October 26, 2015, we will publish a timely withdrawal in the Federal Register to notify the public that the direct final approval will not take effect and we will address the comments in a subsequent final action based on the proposal. If we do not receive timely adverse comments, the direct final approval will be effective without further notice on November 24, 2015. This will incorporate these rules into the federally enforceable SIP.

    Please note that if EPA receives adverse comment on an amendment, paragraph, or section of this rule and if that provision may be severed from the remainder of the rule, EPA may adopt as final those provisions of the rule that are not the subject of an adverse comment.

    III. Incorporation by Reference

    In these rules, the EPA is finalizing regulatory text that includes incorporation by reference. In accordance with the requirements of 1 CFR part 51.5, the EPA is finalizing the incorporation by reference of the MBUAPCD and VCAPCD rules described in the amendments to 40 CFR part 52 set forth below. The EPA made, and will continue to make, these documents available electronically through www.regulations.gov and in hard copy at the appropriate EPA office (see the ADDRESSES section of this preamble for more information).

    IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    Under the Clean Air Act, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP submission that complies with the provisions of the Act 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 Clean Air Act. 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 Orders 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011);

    • 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 Clean Air Act; 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, the rules are not approved to apply on any Indian reservation land or in any other area where EPA or an Indian tribe has demonstrated that a tribe has jurisdiction. In those areas of Indian country, the rules do not have tribal implications and will not impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law as specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000).

    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).

    Under section 307(b)(1) of the Clean Air Act, petitions for judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by November 24, 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. Parties with objections to this direct final rule are encouraged to file a comment in response to the parallel notice of proposed rulemaking for this action published in the Proposed Rules section of today's Federal Register, rather than file an immediate petition for judicial review of this direct final rule, so that EPA can withdraw this direct final rule and address the comment in the proposed rulemaking. This action 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, Ozone, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Volatile organic compounds.

    Dated: August 11, 2015. Jared Blumenfeld, Regional Administrator, Region IX.

    Part 52, Chapter I, Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations 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 F—California 2. Section 52.220 is amended by adding paragraph (c)(461) to read as follows:
    § 52.220 Identification of plan.

    (c) * * *

    (461) New and amended regulations were submitted on April 7, 2015 by the Governor's designee.

    (i) Incorporation by Reference.

    (A) Monterey Bay Unified Air Pollution Control District.

    (1) Rule 1002, “Transfer of Gasoline into Vehicle Fuel Tanks,” revised on December 17, 2014.

    (B) Ventura County Air Pollution Control District.

    (1) Rule 74.33, “Liquefied Petroleum Gas Transfer or Dispensing,” adopted on January 13, 2015.

    [FR Doc. 2015-24106 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R04-OAR-2015-0133; FRL-9934-72-Region 4] Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans; Florida; Combs Oil Company Variance AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is approving a revision to the State Implementation Plan (SIP) submitted by the State of Florida through the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) on July 31, 2009. The revision grants a variance to the Combs Oil Company, located in Naples, Florida. This source specific revision relieves the Combs Oil Company of the requirement to comply with the Florida rule governing installation and operation of vapor collection and control systems on loading racks at bulk gasoline plants. EPA is approving Florida's July 31, 2009, source specific SIP revision.

    DATES:

    This rule will be effective October 26, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket Identification No. EPA-R04-OAR-2015-0133. All documents in the docket are listed on the www.regulations.gov Web site. Although listed in the index, some information is not publicly available, i.e., Confidential Business Information 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 at the Air Regulatory Management Section, Air Planning and Implementation Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. EPA requests that if at all possible, you contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section to schedule your inspection. The Regional Office's official hours of business are Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding Federal holidays.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Sean Lakeman, Air Regulatory Management Section, Air Planning and Implementation Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. Mr. Lakeman can be reached by phone at (404) 562-9043 or via electronic mail at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    I. Background

    The Florida Rule 62-296.418 requires bulk gasoline plants which began operation on or after August 1, 2007, to install and operate vapor collection and control systems on their loading racks. The rule became effective on May 9, 2007, and was submitted to EPA as a proposed SIP revision on May 31, 2007. EPA approved the SIP revision on June 1, 2009 (74 FR 26103).

    On May 30, 2007, Combs Oil Company submitted a petition for variance from the requirements of Rule 62-296.418(2)(b)2, Florida Administrative Code (F.A.C.), for its new bulk gasoline plant. The company operates an existing bulk gasoline plant in Naples, Florida. The new plant would replace the existing plant and be constructed at a different site in the area.

    Under Section 120.542 of the Florida Statutes, the DEP may grant a variance when the person subject to a rule demonstrates that the purpose of the underlying statute will be or has been achieved by other means, or when application of a rule would create a substantial hardship or violate principles of fairness. The DEP determined that Combs Oil Company had demonstrated that principles of fairness would be violated because the facility would have begun operations prior to August 1, 2007, but for delays in building and relocating to the new facility related to hurricanes, which were beyond the control of the company. Therefore, the DEP issued an Order Granting Variance to Combs Oil Company on August 20, 2008, relieving the company from the requirements of Rule 62-296.418(2)(b)2., F.A.C., for its proposed new facility.

    In a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPR) published on July 20, 2015, EPA proposed to approve Florida's July 31, 2009, SIP revision granting a variance to the Combs Oil Company, located in Naples, Florida. See 80 FR 42763. The details of Florida's submittal and the rationale for EPA's actions are explained in the NPR. Comments on the proposed rulemaking were due on or before August 19, 2015. No adverse comments were received.

    II. Incorporation by Reference

    In this rule, EPA is finalizing regulatory text that includes incorporation by reference. In accordance with requirements of 1 CFR 51.5, EPA is finalizing incorporate by reference of “Combs Oil Company Source Specific Variance” order granting variance on August 20, 2008. EPA has made, and will continue to make, these documents generally available electronically through www.regulations.gov and/or in hard copy at the EPA Region 4 office (see the ADDRESSES section of this preamble for more information).

    III. Final Action

    EPA is approving a source specific SIP revision submitted by the Florida DEP on July 31, 2009. The revision grants a variance to the Combs Oil Company, located in Naples, Florida. This source specific revision relieves the Combs Oil Company of the requirement to comply with the Florida rule governing installation and operation of vapor collection and control systems on loading racks at bulk gasoline plants. It should be noted that approval of the variance for Combs Oil Company only relieves them from the requirements of Rule 62-296.418(2)(b)2 F.A.C., for its new bulk gasoline plant, it does not relieve them from any requirements established in 40 CFR parts 60 and 63.

    IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    Under the CAA, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP submission that complies with the provisions of the Act and applicable federal regulations. See 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 a 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 Orders 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011);

    • 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).

    The SIP is not approved to apply on any Indian reservation land or in any other area where EPA or an Indian tribe has demonstrated that a tribe has jurisdiction. In those areas of Indian country, the rule does not have tribal implications as specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000), nor will it impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law.

    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).

    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 November 24, 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 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, Ozone, Nitrogen dioxide, Particulate Matter, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Volatile organic compounds.

    Dated: September 16, 2015. Heather McTeer Toney, Regional Administrator, Region 4.

    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 K—Florida 2. Section 52.520(d), is amended by adding a new entry for “Combs Oil Company” at the end of the table to read as follows:
    § 52.520 Identification of plan.

    (d) * * *

    EPA-Approved Florida Source-Specific Requirements Name of source Permit
  • number
  • State
  • effective
  • date
  • EPA approval date Explanation
    *         *         *         *         *         *         * Combs Oil Company 7/31/2009 9/25/2015 [Insert citation of publication] Order Granting Variance from Rule 62-296.418(2)(b)2.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24325 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R04-OAR-2015-0113; FRL-9934-53-Region 4] Air Plan Approval; GA; Removal of Stage II Gasoline Vapor Recovery Program AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency.

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is approving changes to the Georgia State Implementation Plan (SIP) submitted by the State of Georgia, through the Georgia Environmental Protection Division, on January 22, 2015, to remove Stage II vapor control requirements for new and upgraded gasoline dispensing facilities in the State and to allow for the decommissioning of existing Stage II equipment.

    DATES:

    This rule will be effective October 26, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket Identification No. EPA-R04-OAR-2015-0113. All documents in the docket are listed on the www.regulations.gov Web site. Although listed in the index, some information may not be publicly available, i.e., Confidential Business Information 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 at the Air Regulatory Management Section (formerly Regulatory Development Section), Air Planning and Implementation Branch (formerly Air Planning Branch), Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. EPA requests that if at all possible, you contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section to schedule your inspection. The Regional Office's official hours of business are Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding Federal holidays.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Kelly Sheckler, Air Regulatory Management Section, Air Planning and Implementation Branch, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, Region 4, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 61 Forsyth Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. Ms. Sheckler's telephone number is (404) 562-9222. She can also be reached via electronic mail at [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background

    On November 13, 1992, the State of Georgia submitted a SIP revision to address the Stage II requirements 1 for the Atlanta 1-Hour Ozone Area.2 EPA approved that SIP revision, containing Georgia's Stage II rule (Georgia Rule 391-3-1-.02(2)(zz)—Gasoline Dispensing Facilities—Stage II) in a notice published on February 2, 1996. See 61 FR 3819. On January 22, 2015, the State submitted a SIP revision to EPA with a request to remove its Stage II rule from the Georgia SIP thereby eliminating Stage II vapor control requirements for new and upgraded gasoline dispensing facilities in the State and allowing for the decommissioning of existing Stage II equipment. EPA published a proposed rulemaking on July 16, 2015, to approve that SIP revision. The details of Georgia's submittal and the rationale for EPA's action are explained in the NPR. See 80 FR 42076. The comment period for this proposed rulemaking closed on August 17, 2015. EPA did not receive any comments, adverse or otherwise, during the public comment period.

    1 Stage II is a system designed to capture displaced vapors that emerge from inside a vehicle's fuel tank, when gasoline is dispensed into the tank. There are two basic types of Stage II systems, the balance type and the vacuum assist type.

    2 On November 6, 1991, EPA designated the following counties in and around metropolitan Atlanta as a serious ozone nonattainment area for the 1-hour ozone NAAQS (referred to as the “Atlanta 1-Hour Ozone Area”): Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, Coweta, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry, Paulding, and Rockdale. 56 FR 56694. The “serious” classification triggered various statutory requirements for the Atlanta 1-Hour Ozone Area, including the requirement pursuant to section 182(b)(3) of the CAA for the Area to require all owners and operators of gasoline dispensing systems to install and operate Stage II. EPA redesignated the Atlanta 1-Hour Ozone Area to attainment for the 1-hour ozone NAAQS, effective June 14, 2005. See 70 FR 34660 (June 15, 2005).

    II. Final Action

    EPA is taking final action to approve the January 22, 2015, SIP revision submitted by Georgia and remove Georgia Rule 391-3-1-.02(2)(zz) from the SIP. This action removes Stage II vapor control requirements for new and upgraded gasoline dispensing facilities and allows for the decommissioning of existing Stage II equipment. EPA has determined that Georgia's January 22, 2015, SIP revision related to the State's Stage II rules is consistent with the CAA and EPA's regulations and guidance.

    III. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    Under the CAA, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP submission that complies with the provisions of the Act and applicable federal regulations. See 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) and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011); • 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, the SIP is not approved to apply on any Indian reservation land or in any other area where EPA or an Indian tribe has demonstrated that a tribe has jurisdiction. In those areas of Indian country, the rule does not have tribal implications as specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000), nor will it impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law.

    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).

    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 November 24, 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 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, Ozone, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Volatile organic compounds.

    Authority:

    42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

    Dated: September 10, 2015. Heather McTeer Toney, Regional Administrator, Region 4.

    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 L—Georgia 2. In § 52.570, the table in paragraph (c) is amended by removing the entry for “391-3-1-.02(2)(zz).”
    [FR Doc. 2015-24186 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R04-OAR-2013-0163; FRL-9934-73-Region 4] Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans; Mississippi: Miscellaneous Changes AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is approving portions of a State Implementation Plan (SIP) revision submitted by the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ), to EPA on July 25, 2010. The SIP revision includes multiple changes to Mississippi's SIP to add definitions in accordance with federal regulations and to implement clarifying language.

    DATES:

    This rule will be effective October 26, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket Identification No. EPA-R04-OAR-2013-0163. All documents in the docket are listed on the www.regulations.gov Web site. Although listed in the index, some information is not publicly available, i.e., Confidential Business Information 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 at the Air Regulatory Management Section, Air Planning and Implementation Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. EPA requests that if at all possible, you contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section to schedule your inspection. The Regional Office's official hours of business are Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding Federal holidays.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Sean Lakeman, Air Regulatory Management Section, Air Planning and Implementation Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. Mr. Lakeman can be reached by phone at (404) 562-9043 or via electronic mail at [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background

    On June 25, 2010, MDEQ submitted a SIP revision to EPA for approval into the Mississippi SIP.1 This SIP revision includes multiple changes to Mississippi's air pollution control regulation APC-S-1, entitled “Air Emission Regulations for the Prevention, Abatement, and Control of Air Contaminants,” to add and amend definitions in accordance with federal regulations and to implement clarifying language. Specifically, these changes include amendments to Section 2—“Definitions” and Section 3—“Specific Criteria for Sources of Particulate Matter.”

    1 On May 5, 2015, Mississippi withdrew the portion of this SIP revision that modified APC-S-1, Section 14 related to Mississippi's Clean Air Interstate Rule provisions. A copy of the letter withdrawing this portion of Mississippi's submission is in the docket for today's rulemaking. Regarding the changes to APC-S-1, Section 8 related to hazardous air pollutants, EPA is not acting on the revisions related to the vacated Clean Air Mercury Rule in Paragraph 4. As noted in the SIP revision narrative, the change to Section 8, Paragraph 1 regarding the National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants and the change to Section 6, Paragraph 1 regarding the New Source Performance Standards are included in the same state rulemaking package as the changes identified above but are not part of the SIP revision.

    In a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPR) published on July 20, 2015, EPA proposed to approve the portions of Mississippi's June 25, 2010, SIP revision that modify Sections 2 and 3 of APC-S-1. See 80 FR 42774. The details of Mississippi's submittal and the rationale for EPA's actions are explained in the NPR. Comments on the proposed rulemaking were due on or before August 19, 2015. No adverse comments were received.

    II. Incorporation by Reference

    In this rule, EPA is finalizing regulatory text that includes incorporation by reference. In accordance with requirements of 1 CFR 51.5, EPA is finalizing the incorporate by reference of certain changes to Mississippi's air pollution control regulation APC-S-1, entitled “Air Emission Regulations for the Prevention, Abatement, and Control of Air Contaminants.” Specifically, these changes include the amendments to Section 2—“Definitions” and Section 3—“Specific Criteria for Sources of Particulate Matter” which were State effective on February 9, 2009. EPA has made, and will continue to make, these documents generally available electronically through www.regulations.gov and/or in hard copy at the EPA Region 4 office (see the ADDRESSES section of this preamble for more information).

    III. Final Action

    EPA is approving the portions of Mississippi's July 25, 2010, SIP submission revising Sections 2 and 3 of Rule APC-S-1 to add and amend definitions in accordance with federal regulations and to implement clarifying language. EPA has preliminarily determined that these changes to the Mississippi SIP are in accordance with the Clean Air Act (CAA or Act) and EPA policy and regulations.

    IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    Under the CAA, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP submission that complies with the provisions of the Act and applicable federal regulations. See 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 Orders 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011); • 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).

    The SIP is not approved to apply on any Indian reservation land or in any other area where EPA or an Indian tribe has demonstrated that a tribe has jurisdiction. In those areas of Indian country, the rule does not have tribal implications as specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000), nor will it impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law.

    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).

    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 November 24, 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 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, Particulate matter, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Volatile organic compounds.

    Dated: September 16, 2015. Heather McTeer Toney, Regional Administrator, Region 4.

    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 Z—Mississippi 2. Section 52.1270(c), is amended under APC-S-1 Air Emission Regulations for the Prevention, Abatement, and Control of Air Contaminants by revising the entries for “Section 2” and “Section 3” to read as follows:
    § 52.1270 Identification of plan.

    (c) * * *

    EPA-Approved Mississippi Regulations State citation Title/Subject State effective date EPA Approval date Explanation APC-S-1 Air Emission Regulations for the Prevention, Abatement, and Control of Air Contaminants *         *         *         *         *         *         * Section 2 Definitions 2/9/2009 9/25/2015 [Insert citation of publication] Section 3 Specific Criteria for Sources of Particulate Matter 2/9/2009 9/25/2015 [Insert citation of publication] *         *         *         *         *         *         *
    [FR Doc. 2015-24324 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 62 [EPA-R07-OAR-2015-0427; FRL-9934-68-Region 7] Approval and Promulgation of State Plans for Designated Facilities and Pollutants; Missouri; Control of Mercury Emissions From Electric Generating Units AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Direct final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking direct final action to approve a revision to the Missouri State Plan received May 7, 2013. This revision rescinds the state rule and associated state plan controlling mercury emissions from electric generating units. This rule is being rescinded because the Federal Clean Air Mercury Rule, which is the basis for this rule and associated plan, has been vacated and removed from the Code of Federal Regulations. This action will make Missouri's State Plan consistent with Federal regulations.

    DATES:

    This direct final rule will be effective November 24, 2015, without further notice, unless EPA receives adverse comment by October 26, 2015.

    If EPA receives adverse comment, we will publish a timely withdrawal of the direct final rule in the Federal Register informing the public that the rule will not take effect.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R07-OAR-2015-0427, by one of the following methods:

    1. www.regulations.gov. Follow the on-line instructions for submitting comments.

    2. Email: [email protected]

    3. Mail or Hand Delivery: Amy Bhesania, Environmental Protection Agency, Air Planning and Development Branch, 11201 Renner Boulevard, Lenexa, Kansas 66219.

    Instructions: Direct your comments to Docket ID No. EPA-R07-OAR-205-0427. EPA's policy is that all comments received will be included in the public docket without change and may be made available online at www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided, unless the comment includes information claimed to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Do not submit through www.regulations.gov or email information that you consider to be CBI or otherwise protected. The www.regulations.gov Web site is an “anonymous access” system, which means EPA will not know your identity or contact information unless you provide it in the body of your comment. If you send an email comment directly to EPA without going through www.regulations.gov, your email address will be automatically captured and included as part of the comment that is placed in the public docket and made available on the Internet. If you submit an electronic comment, EPA recommends that you include your name and other contact information in the body of your comment and with any disk or CD-ROM you submit. If EPA cannot read your comment due to technical difficulties and cannot contact you for clarification, EPA may not be able to consider your comment. Electronic files should avoid the use of special characters, any form of encryption, and be free of any defects or viruses.

    Docket: All documents in the docket are listed in the www.regulations.gov index. Although listed in the index, some information is not publicly available, i.e., CBI or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such as copyrighted material, will be publicly available only in hard copy form. Publicly available docket materials are available either electronically in www.regulations.gov or in hard copy at the Environmental Protection Agency, Air Planning and Development Branch, 11201 Renner Boulevard, Lenexa, Kansas 66219. The Regional Office's official hours of business are Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding legal holidays. The interested persons wanting to examine these documents should make an appointment with the office at least 24 hours in advance.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Amy Bhesania, Environmental Protection Agency, Air Planning and Development Branch, 11201 Renner Boulevard, Lenexa, Kansas 66219 at (913) 551-7147, or by email at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Throughout this document “we,” “us,” or “our” refer to EPA. This section provides additional information by addressing the following:

    I. What is being addressed in this document? II. Have the requirements for approval of a Section 111(d) plan revision been met? III. What action is EPA taking? I. What is being addressed in this document?

    EPA is taking direct final action to approve a revision to the Missouri State Plan received May 7, 2013. This revision rescinds Missouri state rule 10 CSR 10-6.368, Control of Mercury Emissions from Electric Generating Units, and associated state plan. The state rule and plan was originally incorporated into the Missouri State Plan on January 7, 2008, (73 FR 3194) following the March 15, 2005, promulgation of the Federal Clean Air Mercury Rule (CAMR) which permanently capped and reduced mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants through a regional mercury trading program (70 FR 28606). On February 8, 2008, the D.C. Circuit Court vacated EPA's rule removing power plants from the Clean Air Act (CAA) list of sources of hazardous air pollutants, and at the same time, the Court vacated the Clean Air Mercury Rule. New Jersey v. EPA, 517 F.3d 574 (D.C. Cir. 2008). On February 16, 2012, EPA replaced CAMR with the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS rule) (77 FR 9304). Missouri has accepted delegation of this standard (80 FR 10596). Therefore, this rule and associated plan is being rescinded and removed from the Missouri State Plan to make the plan consistent with Federal regulations.

    II. Have the requirements for approval of a Section 111(d) plan revision been met?

    The Missouri Air Conservation Commission adopted the rescission of 10 CSR 10-6.368 on February 5, 2013. No comments were received on this state action. The Missouri Air Conservation Commission has full legal authority to develop rules pursuant to section 643.050 of the Missouri Air Conservation Law. The State followed all applicable administrative procedures in proposing and adopting the rule actions. After publication by the Missouri Secretary of State in the Code of State Regulations, the rescission of the rule became effective May 30, 2013. The State of Missouri submitted the rule and rescission to us for approval pursuant to section 111(d). We have evaluated the state plan rescission against criteria in 40 CFR part 60, subpart B “Adoption and Submittal of State Plans for Designated Facilities.” The state plan rescission meets all of the applicable requirements.

    III. What action is EPA taking?

    EPA is taking direct final action to approve a revision to the Missouri State Plan to rescind Missouri state rule 10 CSR 10-6.368, Control of Mercury Emissions from Electric Generating Units, and associated state plan.

    We are publishing this direct final rule without a prior proposed rule because we view this as a noncontroversial action and anticipate no adverse comment. However, in the “Proposed Rules” section of this Federal Register, we are publishing a separate document that will serve as the proposed rule to approve the State Plan revision if adverse comments are received on this direct final rule. We will not institute a second comment period on this action. Any parties interested in commenting must do so at this time. For further information about commenting on this rule, see the ADDRESSES section of this document.

    If EPA receives adverse comment, we will publish a timely withdrawal in the Federal Register informing the public that this direct final rule will not take effect. We will address all public comments in any subsequent final rule based on the proposed rule.

    Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    Under the CAA, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP submission that complies with the provisions of the Act 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 Orders 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011);

    • 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).

    The SIP is not approved to apply on any Indian reservation land or in any other area where EPA or an Indian tribe has demonstrated that a tribe has jurisdiction. In those areas of Indian country, the rule does not have tribal implications and will not impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law as specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000).

    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).

    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 November 24, 2015. Filing a petition for reconsideration by the Administrator of this direct 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 may not be challenged later in proceedings to enforce its requirements. (See section 307(b)(2).)

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 62

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Administrative practice and procedure, Intergovernmental relations, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    Dated: September 14, 2015. Mark Hague, Acting Regional Administrator, Region 7.

    For the reasons stated in the preamble, EPA amends 40 CFR part 62 as set forth below:

    PART 62—APPROVAL AND PROMULGATION OF STATE PLANS FOR DESIGNATED FACILITIES AND POLLUTANTS 1. The authority citation for part 62 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    42 U.S.C. et seq.

    Subpart AA—Missouri
    § 62.6362 [Removed]
    2. Section 62.6362 is removed and reserved.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24339 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 131 [EPA-HQ-OW-2010-0606; FRL-9934-33-OW] RIN 2040-AF16 Water Quality Standards Regulatory Revisions; Correction AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Final rule; correction.

    SUMMARY:

    EPA is removing a sentence regarding the effective date for judicial review purposes in the preamble to a final rule that appeared in the Federal Register of August 21, 2015 (80 FR 51019). EPA included this sentence in the preamble to the final rule in error. Since the final rule does not fall within any of the actions listed in Clean Water Act section 509, it was not necessary to specify an effective date for judicial review purposes in the preamble. With this correction there is no delay in the effective date for purposes of judicial review, and parties choosing to do so may therefore seek judicial review at this time.

    DATES:

    This correction is effective as of August 21, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Janita Aguirre, Standards and Health Protection Division, Office of Science and Technology (4305T), Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington DC 20460; telephone number: (202) 566-1860; fax number: (202) 566-0409; email address: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    In FR Doc. 2015-19821 appearing on page 51020 in the Federal Register of Friday, August 21, 2015, the following correction is made:

    On page 51022, in the second column, under the heading entitled E. When does this action take effect?, in the first paragraph, line 2, remove “For judicial review purposes, this rule is promulgated as of 1 p.m. EST (Eastern Standard Time) on the effective date, which will be 60 days after the date of publication of the rule in the Federal Register.”

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 131

    Environmental protection, Indians—lands, Intergovernmental relations, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Water pollution control.

    Dated: September 18, 2015. Kenneth J. Kopocis, Deputy Assistant Administrator, Office of Water.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24314 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Federal Emergency Management Agency 44 CFR Part 64 [Docket ID FEMA-2015-0001; Internal Agency Docket No. FEMA-8401] Suspension of Community Eligibility AGENCY:

    Federal Emergency Management Agency, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    This rule identifies communities where the sale of flood insurance has been authorized under the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) that are scheduled for suspension on the effective dates listed within this rule because of noncompliance with the floodplain management requirements of the program. If the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) receives documentation that the community has adopted the required floodplain management measures prior to the effective suspension date given in this rule, the suspension will not occur and a notice of this will be provided by publication in the Federal Register on a subsequent date. Also, information identifying the current participation status of a community can be obtained from FEMA's Community Status Book (CSB). The CSB is available at http://www.fema.gov/fema/csb.shtm.

    DATES:

    The effective date of each community's scheduled suspension is the third date (“Susp.”) listed in the third column of the following tables.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    If you want to determine whether a particular community was suspended on the suspension date or for further information, contact Bret Gates, Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration, Federal Emergency Management Agency, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472, (202) 646-4133.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The NFIP enables property owners to purchase Federal flood insurance that is not otherwise generally available from private insurers. In return, communities agree to adopt and administer local floodplain management measures aimed at protecting lives and new construction from future flooding. Section 1315 of the National Flood Insurance Act of 1968, as amended, 42 U.S.C. 4022, prohibits the sale of NFIP flood insurance unless an appropriate public body adopts adequate floodplain management measures with effective enforcement measures. The communities listed in this document no longer meet that statutory requirement for compliance with program regulations, 44 CFR part 59. Accordingly, the communities will be suspended on the effective date in the third column. As of that date, flood insurance will no longer be available in the community. We recognize that some of these communities may adopt and submit the required documentation of legally enforceable floodplain management measures after this rule is published but prior to the actual suspension date. These communities will not be suspended and will continue to be eligible for the sale of NFIP flood insurance. A notice withdrawing the suspension of such communities will be published in the Federal Register.

    In addition, FEMA publishes a Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) that identifies the Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHAs) in these communities. The date of the FIRM, if one has been published, is indicated in the fourth column of the table. No direct Federal financial assistance (except assistance pursuant to the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act not in connection with a flood) may be provided for construction or acquisition of buildings in identified SFHAs for communities not participating in the NFIP and identified for more than a year on FEMA's initial FIRM for the community as having flood-prone areas (section 202(a) of the Flood Disaster Protection Act of 1973, 42 U.S.C. 4106(a), as amended). This prohibition against certain types of Federal assistance becomes effective for the communities listed on the date shown in the last column. The Administrator finds that notice and public comment procedures under 5 U.S.C. 553(b), are impracticable and unnecessary because communities listed in this final rule have been adequately notified.

    Each community receives 6-month, 90-day, and 30-day notification letters addressed to the Chief Executive Officer stating that the community will be suspended unless the required floodplain management measures are met prior to the effective suspension date. Since these notifications were made, this final rule may take effect within less than 30 days.

    National Environmental Policy Act. This rule is categorically excluded from the requirements of 44 CFR part 10, Environmental Considerations. No environmental impact assessment has been prepared.

    Regulatory Flexibility Act. The Administrator has determined that this rule is exempt from the requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act because the National Flood Insurance Act of 1968, as amended, Section 1315, 42 U.S.C. 4022, prohibits flood insurance coverage unless an appropriate public body adopts adequate floodplain management measures with effective enforcement measures. The communities listed no longer comply with the statutory requirements, and after the effective date, flood insurance will no longer be available in the communities unless remedial action takes place.

    Regulatory Classification. This final rule is not a significant regulatory action under the criteria of section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866 of September 30, 1993, Regulatory Planning and Review, 58 FR 51735.

    Executive Order 13132, Federalism. This rule involves no policies that have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132.

    Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform. This rule meets the applicable standards of Executive Order 12988.

    Paperwork Reduction Act. This rule does not involve any collection of information for purposes of the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.

    List of Subjects in 44 CFR Part 64

    Flood insurance, Floodplains.

    Accordingly, 44 CFR part 64 is amended as follows:

    PART 64—[AMENDED] 1. The authority citation for Part 64 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    42 U.S.C. 4001 et seq.; Reorganization Plan No. 3 of 1978, 3 CFR, 1978 Comp.; p. 329; E.O. 12127, 44 FR 19367, 3 CFR, 1979 Comp.; p. 376.

    § 64.6 [Amended]
    2. The tables published under the authority of § 64.6 are amended as follows: State and Location Community No. Effective date authorization/cancellation of sale of flood insurance in community Current effective map date Date certain
  • federal assistance
  • no longer
  • available
  • in SFHAs
  • Region III Pennsylvania: Aleppo, Township of, Greene County 421667 June 28, 1979, Emerg; August 24, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. Oct. 16, 2015 Oct. 16, 2015 Carmichaels, Borough of, Greene County 420475 July 2, 1975, Emerg; September 28, 1979, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......* do   Do. Center, Township of, Greene County 421668 November 18, 1975, Emerg; May 1, 1986, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Clarksville, Borough of, Greene County 420476 December 3, 1975, Emerg; September 16, 1981, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Cumberland, Township of, Greene County 421188 January 27, 1976, Emerg; July 1, 1986, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Dunkard, Township of, Greene County 422431 February 22, 1984, Emerg; October 5, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Franklin, Township of, Greene County 422595 February 7, 1977, Emerg; February 17, 1989, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Freeport, Township of, Greene County 422432 September 29, 1980, Emerg; September 24, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Gilmore, Township of, Greene County 422433 August 8, 1978, Emerg; August 24, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Gray, Township of, Greene County 421669 February 4, 1976, Emerg; September 24, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Greene, Township of, Greene County 421670 September 7, 1979, Emerg; August 24, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Greensboro, Borough of, Greene County 420477 December 2, 1975, Emerg; March 2, 1989, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Jackson, Township of, Greene County 421671 April 30, 1981, Emerg; August 24, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Jefferson, Township of, Greene County 421672 December 2, 1975, Emerg; September 16, 1981, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Monongahela, Township of, Greene County 421673 July 6, 1979, Emerg; August 24, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Morgan, Township of, Greene County 421674 January 19, 1977, Emerg; July 1, 1986, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Morris, Township of, Greene County 421675 December 30, 1975, Emerg; August 24, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Perry, Township of, Greene County 422434 March 16, 1976, Emerg; May 1, 1986, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Rices Landing, Borough of, Greene County 420479 December 16, 1975, Emerg; July 16, 1981, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Richhill, Township of, Greene County 421676 November 28, 1975, Emerg; August 24, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Springhill, Township of, Greene County 421677 March 13, 1981, Emerg; August 24, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Washington, Township of, Greene County 421678 April 4, 1977, Emerg; August 3, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Wayne, Township of, Greene County 421679 April 8, 1981, Emerg; August 24, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Waynesburg, Borough of, Greene County 420480 April 30, 1975, Emerg; June 17, 1986, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Whiteley, Township of, Greene County 421680 December 21, 1978, Emerg; September 10, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Region V Wisconsin: Bell Center, Village of, Crawford County 550068 August 16, 1978, Emerg; March 5, 1990, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Crawford County, Unincorporated Areas 555551 March 19, 1971, Emerg; April 20, 1973, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. De Soto, Village of, Crawford and Vernon Counties 550069 December 15, 1980, Emerg; January 16, 1981, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Ferryville, Village of, Crawford County 555553 April 16, 1971, Emerg; May 26, 1972, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Gays Mills, Village of, Crawford County 550071 April 12, 1973, Emerg; June 15, 1978, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Germantown, Village of, Washington County 550472 July 15, 1975, Emerg; May 3, 1982, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Hartford, City of, Dodge and Washington Counties 550473 April 17, 1975, Emerg; December 4, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Lynxville, Village of, Crawford County 555563 April 3, 1971, Emerg; March 16, 1973, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Prairie du Chien, City of, Crawford County 555573 May 22, 1970, Emerg; May 22, 1970, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Richfield, Village of, Washington County 550518 N/A, Emerg; September 30, 2008, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Slinger, Village of, Washington County 550587 October 16, 1986, Emerg; November 20, 2013, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Soldiers Grove, Village of, Crawford County 550074 April 9, 1971, Emerg; April 3, 1984, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Steuben, Village of, Crawford County 555580 May 21, 1971, Emerg; April 20, 1973, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Washington County, Unincorporated Areas. 550471 May 28, 1975, Emerg; September 1, 1983, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Wauzeka, Village of, Crawford County 555586 April 9, 1971, Emerg; April 20, 1973, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Region VII Iowa: Burlington, City of, Des Moines County 190114 April 15, 1975, Emerg; July 2, 1981, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Des Moines County, Unincorporated Areas. 190113 N/A, Emerg; July 20, 1993, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Letts, City of, Louisa County 190311 N/A, Emerg; September 2, 1993, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Region VIII Montana: Columbus, Town of, Stillwater County 300109 April 9, 1997, Emerg; August 2, 1997, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Stillwater County, Unincorporated Areas 300078 August 26, 1975, Emerg; November 15, 1985, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. North Dakota: Belmont, Township of, Traill County 380653 July 12, 1982, Emerg; August 5, 1986, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Beulah, City of, Mercer County 380066 March 14, 1975, Emerg; January 5, 1978, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Bingham, Township of, Traill County 380640 February 8, 1980, Emerg; August 5, 1986, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Caledonia, Township of, Traill County 380638 January 3, 1980, Emerg; August 5, 1986, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Eldorado, Township of, Traill County 380645 April 25, 1980, Emerg; August 19, 1986, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Elm River, Township of, Traill County 380636 September 13, 1979, Emerg; August 5, 1986, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Hazen, City of, Mercer County 380067 August 13, 1974, Emerg; December 15, 1977, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Hebron, City of, Morton County 380071 April 9, 1974, Emerg; September 5, 1979, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Herberg, Township of, Traill County 380621 September 25, 1978, Emerg; August 5, 1986, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Kelso, Township of, Traill County 380644 April 11, 1980, Emerg; August 5, 1986, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Mandan, City of, Morton County 380072 April 4, 1974, Emerg; September 30, 1987, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Mercer County, Unincorporated Areas 380294 October 20, 1993, Emerg; May 4, 1998, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Morton County, Unincorporated Areas 380148 September 13, 1973, Emerg; September 30, 1987, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Stavanger, Township of, Traill County 380642 February 29, 1980, Emerg; August 5, 1986, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Three Affiliated Tribes, Dunn, McKenzie, McLean, Mercer and Mountrail Counties. 380721 August 23, 2000, Emerg; August 19, 2010, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Traill County, Unincorporated Areas 380130 June 30, 1997, Emerg; May 4, 1998, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Zap, City of, Mercer County 380068 April 7, 1975, Emerg; July 16, 1979, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. Region IX Arizona: Cottonwood, City of, Yavapai County 040096 May 5, 1975, Emerg; September 16, 1981, Reg; October 16, 2015, Susp. ......do   Do. ......* do = Ditto. Code for reading third column: Emerg. —Emergency; Reg. —Regular; Susp. —Suspension.
    Dated: September 8, 2015. Roy E. Wright Deputy Associate Administrator, Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration, Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24433 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-12-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 600 [Docket No. 141212999-5843-01] RIN 0648-BE73 Magnuson-Stevens Act Provisions; Fishery Management Council Freedom of Information Act Requests Regulations; Technical Amendments to Regulations AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Final rule; technical amendments.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS is hereby making technical amendments without altering the substance of the regulations governing the operation of Regional Fishery Management Councils (Councils) under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act). The intent of this action is to update existing Council regulations to reflect the current procedure for processing Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests received by Councils. These changes will make our rules more internally consistent and easier to use.

    DATES:

    This final rule is effective October 26, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    1315 East West Highway, SSMC3, Room #10843, Silver Spring, MD 20910.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Steven Goodman at 301-427-8732, [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    Recently, the Department of Commerce (DOC) published a proposed rule and a final rule in the Federal Register (79 FR 11025, February 27, 2014; 79 FR 62553, October 20, 2014) implementing revisions to DOC FOIA regulations. The DOC FOIA regulations were revised to clarify, update and streamline the language of several procedural provisions, including using FOIAonline, a web-based tracking and processing tool for FOIA requests. NOAA now uses FOIAonline to receive, securely manage and respond to FOIA requests submitted by the public.

    NMFS has existing regulations for handling FOIA requests received by the Councils entitled “Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests.” 50 CFR 600.155. These regulations provide that the NOAA FOIA Officer will prepare a Form CD-244, “FOIA Request and Action Record,” for FOIA requests received by a Council.

    Corrections

    NMFS is revising regulations at § 600.155(a) and (b) to reflect the use of FOIAonline. This action specifically amends the regulations to remove the requirement to prepare a Form CD-244 and to clarify that, after FOIA requests received by a Council are coordinated with the appropriate NMFS Regional Office (Region), the Region then forwards the request to the NOAA FOIA officer who enters the FOIA request into FOIAonline. No other changes are being considered or implemented.

    Classification

    The NMFS Assistant Administrator has determined that this rule is consistent with the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act and other applicable laws.

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

    This rule pertains solely to agency procedure and corrects existing regulations to reflect the current practice for processing FOIA requests received by a Council. It makes no changes to the substantive legal rights, obligations, or interests of affected parties. This rule therefore is a “rule of agency organization, procedure or practice” and is therefore exempt from the notice-and-comment requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act at 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(A).

    List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 600

    Administrative practice and procedure, Confidential business information, Fisheries, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    Dated: September 21, 2015. Samuel D. Rauch III, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine Fisheries Service.

    For the reasons set out in the preamble, NMFS amends 50 CFR part 600 as follows:

    PART 600—MAGNUSON-STEVENS ACT PROVISIONS 1. The authority citation for part 600 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    5 U.S.C 561 and 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    2. Section 600.155 is revised to read as follows:
    § 600.155 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests.

    (a) FOIA requests received by a Council should be coordinated promptly with the appropriate NMFS Regional Office. The Region will forward the request to the NOAA FOIA Officer to secure a FOIA number and log the request into FOIAonline. The Region will also obtain clearance from the NOAA General Counsel's Office concerning initial determination for denial of requested information.

    (b) FOIA request processing will be controlled and documented in the Region. The requests should be forwarded to the NOAA FOIA Officer who will enter the request into FOIAonline. The request will be assigned an official FOIA number and due date. In the event the Region determines that the requested information is exempt from disclosure, in full or in part, under the FOIA, the denial letter prepared for the Assistant Administrator's signature, along with the “Foreseeable Harm” Memo and list of documents to be withheld, must be cleared through the NMFS FOIA Liaison. Upon completion, a copy of the signed letter transmitting the information to the requester should be posted to FOIAonline by NMFS.

    [FR Doc. 2015-24364 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 660 [Docket No. 150316270-5270-01] RIN 0648-XE187 Fisheries Off West Coast States; Modifications of the West Coast Commercial and Recreational Salmon Fisheries; Inseason Actions #30 Through #36 AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Modification of fishing seasons; request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS announces seven inseason actions in the ocean salmon fisheries. These inseason actions modified the commercial and recreational salmon fisheries in the area from the U.S./Canada border to Cape Falcon, OR.

    DATES:

    The effective dates for the inseason actions are set out in this document under the heading Inseason Actions. Comments will be accepted through October 13, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, identified by NOAA-NMFS-2015-0001, by any one of the following methods:

    Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2015-0001, click the “Comment Now!” icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments.

    Mail: William W. Stelle, Jr., Regional Administrator, West Coast Region, NMFS, 7600 Sand Point Way NE., Seattle WA 98115-6349.

    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:

    Peggy Mundy at 206-526-4323.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    In the 2015 annual management measures for ocean salmon fisheries (80 FR 25611, May 5, 2015), NMFS announced the commercial and recreational fisheries in the area from the U.S./Canada border to the U.S./Mexico border, beginning May 1, 2015, and 2016 salmon fisheries opening earlier than May 1, 2016. NMFS is authorized to implement inseason management actions to modify fishing seasons and quotas as necessary to provide fishing opportunity while meeting management objectives for the affected species (50 CFR 660.409). Inseason actions in the salmon fishery may be taken directly by NMFS (50 CFR 660.409(a)—Fixed inseason management provisions) or upon consultation with the Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) and the appropriate State Directors (50 CFR 660.409(b)—Flexible inseason management provisions). The state management agencies that participated in the consultations described in this document were: Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) and Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).

    Management of the salmon fisheries is generally divided into two geographic areas: north of Cape Falcon (U.S./Canada border to Cape Falcon, OR) and south of Cape Falcon (Cape Falcon, OR, to the U.S./Mexico border). The inseason actions reported in this document affect fisheries north of Cape Falcon. The north of Cape Falcon area is further subdivided into four management subareas: Neah Bay Subarea (U.S./Canada border to Cape Alava, WA), La Push Subarea (Cape Alava, WA, to Queets River, WA), Westport Subarea (Queets River, WA, to Leadbetter Point, WA), and Columbia River Subarea (Leadbetter Point, WA, to Cape Falcon, OR). All times mentioned refer to Pacific daylight time.

    Inseason Actions Inseason Action #30

    Description of action: Inseason action #30 reduced the landing and possession limit for Chinook salmon in the commercial salmon fishery north of Cape Falcon from 40 to 35 Chinook salmon per vessel per open period. This action superseded inseason action #29 (80 FR 53015, September 2, 2015).

    Effective dates: Inseason action #30 took effect on August 28, 2015, and remained in effect until superseded by inseason action #34 on September 4, 2015.

    Reason and authorization for the action: The Regional Administrator (RA) considered fishery effort and Chinook salmon landings to date, and determined that reducing the landing and possession limit at this time was necessary to maintain the season schedule set preseason, while allowing access to remaining Chinook salmon quota without exceeding the quota. Inseason action to modify quotas and/or fishing seasons is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(i).

    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #30 occurred on August 27, 2015. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

    Inseason Action #31

    Description of action: Inseason action #31 modified the daily bag limit in the recreational salmon fishery in the Columbia River Subarea to allow retention of two Chinook salmon per day; previously only one Chinook salmon could be retained.

    Effective dates: Inseason action #31 took effect on August 29, 2015, and remains in effect until the end of the recreational salmon fishing season, or until superseded by further inseason action.

    Reason and authorization for the action: The RA considered fishery effort and Chinook salmon landings to date and determined that the subarea guideline had sufficient Chinook salmon available to increase the daily bag limit at this time without exceeding the guideline. Inseason action to modify recreational bag limits is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(iii).

    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #31 occurred on August 27, 2015. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

    Inseason Action #32

    Description of action: Inseason action #32 adjusted the remaining coho quota in the recreational salmon fishery north of Cape Falcon, on an impact-neutral basis by subarea, from mark-selective to non-mark-selective. The adjusted non-mark-selective coho quotas by management subarea, as of the effective date, are:

    • Neah Bay Subarea: 4,100 • La Push Subarea: 625 • Westport Subarea: 13,000 • Columbia River Subarea: 15,300

    Effective dates: Inseason action #32 took effect on September 4, 2015, and remains in effect until the end of the 2015 recreational salmon fishery.

    Reason and authorization for the action: The annual management measures (80 FR 25611, May 5, 2015) provide for inseason action to modify the regulations that restrict retention of unmarked coho. To accommodate modifying the regulations from a mark-selective to non-mark-selective coho fishery while still achieving management objectives, including not exceeding allowable impacts on constraining stocks, the Council's Salmon Technical Team (STT) calculated the necessary adjustments to the coho quota on an impact-neutral basis for the constraining stocks for each subarea. For the Neah Bay Subarea, impacts to the Thompson River (Canada) coho stock were most constraining. For the LaPush Subarea, impacts to Thompson River (Canada) and Queets River coho stocks were most constraining. For the Westport Subarea, impacts to Queets River coho were most constraining. For the Columbia River Subarea, impacts to Columbia River natural coho were most constraining. The RA approved the STT's impact-neutral conversion of the remaining recreational mark-selective coho quota to non-mark-selective coho quota. Modification of quotas and/or fishing seasons is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(i).

    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #32 occurred on September 2, 2015. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

    Inseason Action #33

    Description of action: Inseason action #33 modified daily bag limits in the recreational salmon fishery north of Cape Falcon to allow retention of unmarked coho salmon.

    Effective dates: Inseason action #33 took effect on September 4, 2015, and remains in effect until the end of the recreational salmon fishing season, or until superseded by further inseason action. The portion of this action that applies to the Neah Bay Subarea was superseded by inseason action #35 on September 11, 2015.

    Reason and authorization for the action: The annual management measures (80 FR 25611, May 5, 2015) provide for inseason action to modify the regulations that restrict retention of unmarked coho. The RA considered fishery effort, coho catch to date, and the non-mark-selective quota conversions implemented under inseason action #32, and determined that modifying the fishery to allow retention of unmarked coho could be implemented within the allowable impacts on the constraining stocks and without exceeding the non-mark-selective coho quota. Inseason action to modify limited retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(i).

    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #33 occurred on September 2, 2015. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

    Inseason Action #34

    Description of action: Inseason action #34 increased the landing and possession limit for Chinook salmon in the commercial salmon fishery north of Cape Falcon from 35 to 40 Chinook salmon per vessel per open period. This action superseded inseason action #30.

    Effective dates: Inseason action #34 took effect on September 4, 2015, and remains in effect until the end of the 2015 commercial salmon fishery, or until superseded by further inseason action.

    Reason and authorization for the action: The RA considered fishery effort and Chinook salmon landings to date, both of which decreased substantially since the implementation of inseason action #30, largely due to unfavorable weather conditions. The RA determined that increasing the landing and possession limit would allow access to remaining Chinook quota without exceeding the quota. Modification of quotas and/or fishing seasons is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(i).

    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #34 occurred on September 2, 2015. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

    Inseason Action #35

    Description of action: Inseason action #35 reinstated the prohibition on retaining unmarked coho in the recreational salmon fishery in the Neah Bay Subarea. This action superseded that portion of inseason action #33 that applied to the Neah Bay Subarea.

    Effective dates: Inseason action #35 took effect on September 11, 2015, and remains in effect through the end of the 2015 recreational salmon fishery, or until superseded by further inseason action.

    Reason and authorization for the action: The RA considered effort and coho landings to date, both of which increased dramatically in the Neah Bay Subarea after the implementation of inseason action #33. The RA determined that it was necessary to reinstate mark-selective coho regulations to avoid exceeding the coho quota in the Neah Bay Subarea. Inseason action to modify limited retention regulations is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(i).

    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #35 occurred on September 9, 2015. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

    Inseason Action #36

    Description of action: Inseason action #36 implemented an impact-neutral quota trade between the commercial and recreational salmon fisheries north of Cape Falcon. The first part of the trade transferred 3,000 mark-selective coho quota from the commercial fishery to the recreational fishery, which resulted in an addition of 1,700 mark-selective coho recreational quota added to the Neah Bay Subarea on an impact-neutral basis. The second part of the trade transferred 1,500 Chinook salmon from the recreational guidelines of the Westport and Columbia River Subareas, which resulted in an addition of 1,000 Chinook quota added to the commercial fishery south of Queets River.

    Effective dates: Inseason action #36 took effect on September 11, 2015, and remains in effect until the end of the 2015 commercial and recreational salmon fisheries, or until modified by further inseason action.

    Reason and authorization for the action: The annual management measures (80 FR 25611, May 5, 2015) provide for quota transfers between the recreational and commercial salmon fisheries north of Cape Falcon if there is agreement among the areas' representatives on the Salmon Advisory Subpanel (SAS), and if the transfer would not result in exceeding the preseason impact expectations on any salmon stocks. The RA considered landings and effort to date and the recommendations of the SAS, and took this action to sustain fisheries while remaining within overall quotas and impacts to coho and Chinook salmon stocks. Inseason action to modify quotas and/or fishing seasons is authorized by 50 CFR 660.409(b)(1)(i).

    Consultation date and participants: Consultation on inseason action #36 occurred on September 9, 2015. Participants in this consultation were staff from NMFS, Council, WDFW, and ODFW.

    All other restrictions and regulations remain in effect as announced for the 2015 ocean salmon fisheries and 2016 salmon fisheries opening prior to May 1, 2016 (80 FR 25611, May 5, 2015) and as modified by prior inseason actions.

    The RA determined that the best available information indicated that coho and Chinook salmon catch to date and fishery effort supported the above inseason actions recommended by the states of Washington and Oregon. The states manage the fisheries in state waters adjacent to the areas of the U.S. exclusive economic zone in accordance with these Federal actions. As provided by the inseason notice procedures of 50 CFR 660.411, actual notice of the described regulatory actions was given, prior to the time the action was effective, by telephone hotline numbers 206-526-6667 and 800-662-9825, and by U.S. Coast Guard Notice to Mariners broadcasts on Channel 16 VHF-FM and 2182 kHz.

    Classification

    The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, NOAA (AA), finds that good cause exists for this notification to be issued without affording prior notice and opportunity for public comment under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) because such notification would be impracticable. As previously noted, actual notice of the regulatory actions was provided to fishers through telephone hotline and radio notification. These actions comply with the requirements of the annual management measures for ocean salmon fisheries (80 FR 25611, May 5, 2015), the West Coast Salmon Fishery Management Plan (Salmon FMP), and regulations implementing the Salmon FMP, 50 CFR 660.409 and 660.411. Prior notice and opportunity for public comment was impracticable because NMFS and the state agencies had insufficient time to provide for prior notice and the opportunity for public comment between the time Chinook salmon catch and effort assessments and projections were developed and fisheries impacts were calculated, and the time the fishery modifications had to be implemented in order to ensure that fisheries are managed based on the best available scientific information, ensuring that conservation objectives and ESA consultation standards are not exceeded. The AA also finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in effectiveness required under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3), as a delay in effectiveness of these actions would allow fishing at levels inconsistent with the goals of the Salmon FMP and the current management measures.

    These actions are authorized by 50 CFR 660.409 and 660.411 and are exempt from review under Executive Order 12866.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: September 22, 2015. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24442 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    80 186 Friday, September 25, 2015 Proposed Rules DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service 7 CFR Part 340 [Docket No. APHIS-2015-0070] Changes to Requirements for Field Testing Regulated Genetically Engineered Wheat AGENCY:

    Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice of request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    We are advising the public that the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is seeking public comment regarding plans to require the authorization of field testing of regulated genetically engineered (GE) wheat under permit. Currently, GE wheat field trials are authorized under notification. Authorizing GE wheat field trials under permit will help prevent future compliance issues, protect plant health and the environment, and allow for flexibility in the length of the volunteer monitoring period and the specific permit conditions to address how volunteers of GE wheat will be appropriately managed.

    DATES:

    We will consider all comments that we receive on or before October 26, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments by either of the following methods:

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2015-0070.

    Postal Mail/Commercial Delivery: Send your comment to Docket No. APHIS-2015-0070, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, APHIS, Station 3A-03.8, 4700 River Road Unit 118, Riverdale, MD 20737-1238.

    Supporting documents and any comments we receive on this docket may be viewed at http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2015-0070 or in our reading room, which is located in Room 1141 of the USDA South Building, 14th Street and Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC. Normal reading room hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays. To be sure someone is there to help you, please call (202) 799-7039 before coming.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ms. Rachel Windsberg, Lead Management and Program Analyst, Regulatory Operations Programs, BRS, APHIS, 4700 River Road Unit 91, Riverdale, MD 20737; 301-851-3109.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) administers regulations regarding genetically engineered (GE) organisms in 7 CFR part 340, “Introduction of Organisms and Products Altered or Produced Through Genetic Engineering Which are Plant Pests or Which There is Reason to Believe are Plant Pests” (referred to below as the regulations). The current regulations govern the introduction (importation, interstate movement, or release into the environment) of certain GE organisms termed “regulated articles.” Regulated articles are essentially GE organisms which might pose a risk as a plant pest. APHIS first promulgated these regulations in 1987 under the authority of the Federal Plant Pest Act and the Plant Quarantine Act, two acts that were subsumed into the Plant Protection Act (PPA, 7 U.S.C. 7701 et seq.) in 2000, along with other provisions.

    Certain regulated articles may be introduced into the environment without a permit if developers follow the requirements for authorizations under notification in § 340.3. These requirements include, among other things, that, when the introduction of regulated articles is an environmental release, regulated articles must be planted in such a way that they are not inadvertently mixed with non-regulated plant materials of any species which are not part of the environmental release. In addition, the field trial must be conducted such that the regulated article will not persist in the environment, and no offspring can be produced that could persist in the environment.

    In 2013 and 2014, APHIS responded to, and investigated, the detection of the unauthorized release of regulated GE wheat found growing in fields in Oregon and Montana, respectively. As part of its response to these incidents, APHIS has carefully assessed its regulatory requirements for field trials of GE wheat and determined that it is necessary to enhance those requirements. Therefore, we are advising the public that we have determined that field trials of GE wheat should be authorized only with a permit. This change will help prevent future compliance issues, protect plant health and the environment, and allow for flexibility in the length of the volunteer monitoring period and the specific permit conditions used to address how volunteers of GE wheat will be appropriately managed. Requiring authorization with a permit also allows APHIS to require the submission of volunteer monitoring reports on a regular basis.

    Due to the change in authorization allowed for GE wheat trials, we are requesting public review and comment on this change. To better help us determine specific permit conditions and volunteer monitoring requirements, we are particularly interested in receiving comments regarding biological or ecological issues, and we encourage the submission of scientific data, studies, or research to support your comments. We also request that, when possible, commenters provide relevant information regarding specific localities or regions as wheat growth, crop management, and crop utilization may vary considerably by geographic region.

    After the comment period closes, APHIS will review all written comments received during the comment period. APHIS will notify the public through an announcement on our Web site of the effective date of our decision whether to authorize GE wheat field trials only with a permit and any additional information regarding any change if APHIS decides to authorize wheat only under permits. APHIS will also announce on our Web site information regarding a stakeholder meeting to answer questions from developers on how to comply with this change.

    Authority:

    7 U.S.C. 7701-7772 and 7781-7786; 31 U.S.C. 9701; 7 CFR 2.22, 2.80, and 371.3.

    Done in Washington, DC, this 23rd day of September 2015. Michael C. Gregoire, Associate Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24553 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-34-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA-2015-3970; Directorate Identifier 2015-SW-006-AD] RIN 2120-AA64 Airworthiness Directives Airbus Helicopters (Previously Eurocopter France) AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

    SUMMARY:

    We propose to supersede airworthiness directive (AD) 2014-12-51 for Airbus Helicopters (previously Eurocopter France) Model EC130B4 and EC130T2 helicopters. AD 2014-12-51 currently requires repetitively inspecting the tailboom to Fenestron junction frame (junction frame) for a crack. This proposed AD would retain the requirements of AD 2014-12-51, change the applicability from helicopters with certain hours time-in-service (TIS) to junction frames with certain hours TIS, and add a compliance time for sling cycles to the junction frame inspection interval. These proposed actions are intended to detect a crack and to prevent failure of the junction frame, which could result in loss of the Fenestron and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter.

    DATES:

    We must receive comments on this proposed AD by November 24, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may send comments by any of the following methods:

    Federal eRulemaking Docket: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for sending your comments electronically.

    Fax: 202-493-2251.

    Mail: Send comments 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 20590-0001.

    Hand Delivery: Deliver to the “Mail” address between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

    Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2015-3970; or in person at the Docket Operations Office between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this proposed AD, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD, the economic evaluation, any comments received and other information. The street address for the Docket Operations Office (telephone 800-647-5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt.

    For service information identified in this proposed AD, contact Airbus Helicopters, Inc., 2701 N. Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; telephone (972) 641-0000 or (800) 232-0323; fax (972) 641-3775; or at http://www.airbushelicopters.com/techpub. You may review service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Room 6N-321, Fort Worth, TX 76177.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Robert Grant, Aviation Safety Engineer, Safety Management Group, FAA, Rotorcraft Directorate, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Fort Worth, TX 76177; email [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Comments Invited

    We invite you to participate in this rulemaking by submitting written comments, data, or views. We also invite comments relating to the economic, environmental, energy, or federalism impacts that might result from adopting the proposals in this document. The most helpful comments reference a specific portion of the proposal, explain the reason for any recommended change, and include supporting data. To ensure the docket does not contain duplicate comments, commenters should send only one copy of written comments, or if comments are filed electronically, commenters should submit only one time.

    We will file in the docket all comments that we receive, as well as a report summarizing each substantive public contact with FAA personnel concerning this proposed rulemaking. Before acting on this proposal, we will consider all comments we receive on or before the closing date for comments. We will consider comments filed after the comment period has closed if it is possible to do so without incurring expense or delay. We may change this proposal in light of the comments we receive.

    Discussion

    On July 24, 2014, we issued AD 2014-12-51, Amendment 39-17921 (79 FR 45335, August 5, 2014), which was sent previously as an Emergency AD to all known U.S. owners and operators of Airbus Helicopters Model EC130B4 and EC130T2 helicopters. AD 2014-12-51 applies to helicopters with 690 or more hours TIS and requires, within 10 hours TIS, dye-penetrant inspecting certain areas of the junction frame for a crack. AD 2014-12-51 also requires, at intervals not exceeding 25 hours TIS, either repeating the dye-penetrant inspection or performing a borescope inspection of certain areas of the junction frame for a crack. If there is a crack, AD 2014-12-51 requires replacing the junction frame. Those actions are intended to detect a crack and to prevent failure of the junction frame, which could result in loss of the Fenestron and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter.

    AD 2014-12-51 was prompted by AD No. 2014-0145-E, dated June 6, 2014, issued by EASA, which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Union, to correct an unsafe condition on Airbus Helicopters Model EC130B4 and EC130T2 helicopters. EASA advises of two incidents of crack propagation through the junction frame that initiated in the lower right-hand side between the web and the flange where the lower spar of the tailboom is joined. EASA states the cracks were of a significant length and not visible from the outside of the helicopter. EASA advises that this condition, if not detected, could lead to structural failure, possibly resulting in Fenestron detachment and consequent loss of control of the helicopter. As a result, EASA AD No. 2014-0145-E required a one-time visual inspection of the junction frame for a crack and a repetitive borescope inspection of the junction frame for a crack.

    EASA revised AD No. 2014-0145-E with AD No. 2014-0145R1, dated June 13, 2014. EASA AD No. 2014-0145R1 changes the compliance time by removing a calendar day requirement and by determining the time accumulated on the junction frame instead of on the helicopter. EASA AD No. 2014-0145R1 also allows the recurring inspection to be accomplished either by performing the borescope inspection or by repeating the visual inspection.

    Actions Since AD 2012-12-51 Was Issued

    Since we issued AD 2014-12-51 (79 FR 45335, August 5, 2014), EASA issued AD No. 2015-0033-E dated February 24, 2015 (EAD 2015-0033-E), which supersedes AD No. 2014-0145-E and AD No. 2014-0145R1. EASA determined that an inspection interval defined in sling cycles is necessary in addition to the existing flight hour inspection interval. EASA also acknowledges an alternative method to inspect from the outside of the tailboom. EASA AD No. 2015-0033-E therefore retains the previous inspection requirements of EASA AD No. 2014-0145R1 and allows for an alternate external visual inspection method, which can be accomplished by a pilot, in combination with the internal inspections.

    This NPRM would retain the dye penetrant and borescope inspections in AD 2014-12-51 but would revise the compliance times. We have determined that applicable helicopters are those with 690 hours TIS accumulated on the junction frame instead of on the helicopter, and that it is necessary to include an inspection interval defined in sling cycles.

    FAA's Determination

    These helicopters have been approved by the aviation authority of France and are approved for operation in the United States. Pursuant to our bilateral agreement with France, EASA, its technical representative, has notified us of the unsafe condition described in its AD. We are proposing this AD because we evaluated all known relevant information and determined that an unsafe condition is likely to exist or develop on other helicopters of the same type design.

    Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    We reviewed Airbus Helicopters Emergency Alert Service Bulletin No. 05A017, Revision 2, dated February 20, 2015 (EASB 05A017), for Model EC130B4 and EC130T2 helicopters. EASB 05A017 describes alternate procedures for inspecting outside the tailboom for a crack at reduced inspection intervals in combination with the internal inspections at extended intervals. EASB 05A017 also specifies adding sling cycles to the existing flight hour inspection interval for helicopters that perform external load-carrying operations. EASA issued AD No. 2015-0033-E mandating the requirements in EASB 05A017 to ensure the continued airworthiness of these helicopters.

    This service information is reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by means identified in the Addresses Section of this proposed AD.

    Other Related Service Information

    We have also reviewed Airbus Helicopters Service Bulletin No. EC130-53-029, Revision 0, dated February 20, 2015 (SB EC130-53-029), which contains procedures to cut out the skin and splice at the junction frame to facilitate the external inspection specified in EASB 05A017.

    Proposed AD Requirements

    This proposed AD would require:

    • Before the junction frame reaches 700 hours TIS or within 10 hours TIS, whichever comes later, removing the horizontal stabilizer, cleaning the junction frame, and dye-penetrant inspecting around the circumference of the junction frame for a crack, paying particular attention to the area around the 4 spars.

    • Within 25 hours TIS or 390 sling cycles, whichever comes first, after the dye-penetrant inspection proposed by this AD, and thereafter at intervals not exceeding 25 hours TIS or 390 sling cycles, whichever comes first, either repeating the dye-penetrant inspection of this proposed AD or, if the area is clean, using a borescope, inspecting around the circumference of the junction frame for a crack.

    Differences Between This Proposed AD and the EASA AD

    The EASA AD includes alternate compliance instructions for helicopters modified with a cut-out in production by Airbus Helicopters Modification 350A087421 or in service by compliance with SB EC130-53-029. This proposed AD would not.

    Interim Action

    We consider this proposed AD to be an interim action. If final action is later identified, we might consider further rulemaking then.

    Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this proposed AD would affect 208 helicopters of U.S. Registry. We estimate that operators may incur the following costs in order to comply with this AD. At an average labor rate of $85 per hour, dye-penetrant inspecting the junction frame would require 1 work-hour, for a cost per helicopter of $85, and a total cost of $17,680 for the fleet, per inspection cycle. Borescope inspecting the junction frame would require .5 work-hour, for a cost per helicopter of $43 and a total cost of $8,944 for the fleet, per inspection cycle.

    If required, replacing the junction frame would require 50 work-hours, and required parts would cost $60,000, for a cost per helicopter of $64,250.

    Authority for This Rulemaking

    Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety. 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.

    We are issuing this rulemaking under the authority described in “Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart III, Section 44701: General requirements.” Under that section, Congress charges the FAA with promoting safe flight of civil aircraft in air commerce by prescribing regulations for practices, methods, and procedures the Administrator finds necessary for safety in air commerce. This regulation is within the scope of that authority because it addresses an unsafe condition that is likely to exist or develop on products identified in this rulemaking action.

    Regulatory Findings

    We determined that this proposed AD would not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132. This proposed AD would not have a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national Government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.

    For the reasons discussed, I certify this proposed regulation:

    1. Is not a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866;

    2. Is not a “significant rule” under the DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979);

    3. Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska to the extent that it justifies making a regulatory distinction; and

    4. Will not have a significant economic impact, positive or negative, on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

    We prepared an economic evaluation of the estimated costs to comply with this proposed AD and placed it in the AD docket.

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

    Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, Incorporation by reference, Safety.

    The Proposed Amendment

    Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA proposes to amend 14 CFR part 39 as follows:

    PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES 1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701.

    § 39.13 [Amended]
    2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by removing Airworthiness Directive (AD) 2014-12-51, Amendment 39-17921 (79 FR 45335, August 5, 2014), and adding the following new AD: Airbus Helicopters (previously Eurocopter France): Docket No. FAA-2015-3970; Directorate Identifier 2015-SW-006-AD. (a) Applicability

    This AD applies to Airbus Helicopters Model EC130B4 and EC130T2 helicopters with a tailboom to fenestron junction frame (junction frame) that has 690 or more hours time-in-service (TIS), certificated in any category.

    (b) Unsafe Condition

    This AD defines the unsafe condition as a crack in the junction frame. This condition could result in failure of the junction frame, which could result in loss of the Fenestron and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter.

    (c) Affected ADs

    This AD supersedes AD 2014-12-51, Amendment 39-17921 (79 FR 45335, August 5, 2014).

    (d) Comments Due Date

    We must receive comments by November 24, 2015.

    (e) Compliance

    You are responsible for performing each action required by this AD within the specified compliance time unless it has already been accomplished prior to that time.

    (f) Required Actions

    (1) Before the junction frame reaches 700 hours TIS or within 10 hours TIS, whichever occurs later, remove the horizontal stabilizer, clean the junction frame, and dye-penetrant inspect around the circumference of the junction frame for a crack in the areas shown in Figure 1 of Airbus Helicopters EC130 Emergency Alert Service Bulletin No. 05A017, Revision 2, dated February 20, 2015 (EASB 05A017). Pay particular attention to the area around the 4 spars (item b) of Figure 1 of EASB 05A017. An example of a crack is shown in Figure 3 of EASB 05A017.

    (2) Within 25 hours TIS or 390 sling cycles, whichever occurs first after the inspection required by paragraph (f)(1) of this AD, and thereafter at intervals not exceeding 25 hours TIS or 390 sling cycles, whichever occurs first, either perform the actions of paragraph (f)(1) of this AD or, if the area is clean, using a borescope, inspect around the circumference of the junction frame for a crack in the areas shown in Figure 2 of EASB 05A017. Pay particular attention to the area around the 4 spars (item b) of Figure 2 of EASB 05A017. An example of a crack is shown in Figure 3 of EASB 05A017. For purposes of this AD, a sling cycle is defined as one landing with or without stopping the rotor or one external load-carrying operation; an external load-carrying operation occurs each time a helicopter picks up an external load and drops it off.

    (3) If there is a crack, before further flight, replace the junction frame.

    (g) Special Flight Permits

    Special flight permits are prohibited.

    (h) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    (1) The Manager, Safety Management Group, FAA, may approve AMOCs for this AD. Send your proposal to: Robert Grant, Aviation Safety Engineer, Safety Management Group, Rotorcraft Directorate, FAA, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone (817) 222-5110; email [email protected]

    (2) For operations conducted under a 14 CFR part 119 operating certificate or under 14 CFR part 91, subpart K, we suggest that you notify your principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight standards district office or certificate holding district office, before operating any aircraft complying with this AD through an AMOC.

    (i) Additional Information

    (1) Airbus Helicopters Service Bulletin No. EC130-53-029, Revision 0, dated February 20, 2015, which is not incorporated by reference, contains additional information about the subject of this AD. For service information identified in this AD, contact Airbus Helicopters, Inc., 2701 N. Forum Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052; telephone (972) 641-0000 or (800) 232-0323; fax (972) 641-3775; or at http://www.airbushelicopters.com/techpub. You may review a copy of the service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Room 6N-321, Fort Worth, TX 76177.

    (2) The subject of this AD is addressed in European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) AD No. 2015-0033-E, dated February 24, 2015. You may view the EASA AD on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov in Docket No. FAA-2015-3970.

    (j) Subject

    Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 5302: Rotorcraft Tailboom.

    Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on September 17, 2015. James A. Grigg, Acting Manager, Rotorcraft Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24251 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA-2011-0027; Directorate Identifier 2010-NM-127-AD] RIN 2120-AA64 Airworthiness Directives; The Boeing Company Airplanes AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking (SNPRM); reopening of comment period.

    SUMMARY:

    We are revising an earlier proposed airworthiness directive (AD) for The Boeing Company Model 777-200 and -300 series airplanes, equipped with Rolls-Royce Model RB211-Trent 800 engines. The notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) proposed to require repetitive inspections of the thrust reverser (T/R) structure and sealant, and related investigative and corrective actions if necessary. The NPRM was prompted by reports of T/R events related to thermal damage of the T/R inner wall. This action revises the NPRM by proposing to add different repetitive inspections requirements for T/R halves with a thermal protective system installed. This action also revises the NPRM by proposing to require installation of serviceable T/R halves, which would terminate the repetitive inspections in this SNPRM. This SNPRM also proposes to revise the inspection or maintenance program by incorporating new airworthiness limitations. We are proposing this SNPRM to detect and correct a degraded T/R inner wall panel, which could lead to failure of the T/R and adjacent components and their consequent separation from the airplane, and which could result in a rejected takeoff (RTO) and cause asymmetric thrust and consequent loss of control of the airplane during reverse thrust operation. If a T/R inner wall overheats, separated components could cause structural damage to the airplane, damage to other airplanes, or possible injury to people on the ground. Since these actions impose an additional burden over that proposed in the NPRM, we are reopening the comment period to allow the public the chance to comment on these proposed changes.

    DATES:

    We must receive comments on this SNPRM by November 9, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may send comments, using the procedures found in 14 CFR 11.43 and 11.45, by any of the following methods:

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

    Fax: 202-493-2251.

    Mail: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590.

    Hand Delivery: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

    For service information identified in this AD, contact Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Attention: Data & Services Management, P.O. Box 3707, MC 2H-65, Seattle, WA 98124-2207; telephone 206-544-5000, extension 1; fax 206-766-5680; Internet https://www.myboeingfleet.com. You may view this referenced service information at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221. It is also available on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2011-0027.

    Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2011-0027; or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this proposed AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for the Docket Office (phone: 800-647-5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Kevin Nguyen, Aerospace Engineer, Propulsion Branch, ANM-140S, FAA, Seattle Aircraft Certification Office (ACO), 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; phone: 425-917-6501; fax: 425-917-6590; email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Comments Invited

    We invite you to send any written relevant data, views, or arguments about this proposed AD. Send your comments to an address listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include “Docket No. FAA-2011-0027; Directorate Identifier 2010-NM-127-AD” at the beginning of your comments. We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of this proposed AD. We will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend this proposed AD because of those comments.

    We will post all comments we receive, without change, to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information you provide. We will also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal contact we receive about this proposed AD.

    Discussion

    We issued an NPRM to amend 14 CFR part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to certain Model 777-200 and -300 series airplanes. The NPRM published in the Federal Register on January 20, 2011 (76 FR 3561). The NPRM proposed to require repetitive inspections for degradation of T/R structure and sealant, and related investigative and corrective actions if necessary.

    Actions Since NPRM (76 FR 3561, January 20, 2011) Was Issued

    Since we issued the NPRM (76 FR 3561, January 20, 2011), we have received additional reports of thermal damage of the T/R inner wall on Rolls-Royce Model RB211-Trent 800 engines.

    The preamble to the NPRM (76 FR 3561, January 20, 2011) specified that we considered those proposed requirements “interim action,” and that the manufacturer was developing a modification to address the unsafe condition. That NPRM explained that we might consider further rulemaking if a modification were developed, approved, and available. The manufacturer now has developed a thermal protection system (TPS) and inner wall. We have determined that further rulemaking is indeed necessary. This proposed AD also would require a revision to the maintenance or inspection program to incorporate new airworthiness limitations. We have determined the following actions are necessary to address the identified unsafe condition:

    • For airplanes with pre-TPS insulation blankets, part number P/N 315W5113-(XX) and 315W5010-(XX): The interim actions and repetitive inspections are specified Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010.

    • For airplanes with TPS insulation blankets, P/N 315W5115-(XX): The interim repetitive inspections (non-destructive test (NDT) and electronic engine control (EEC) repetitive inspections only) are specified in Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082, Revision 1, dated June 15, 2015; and Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013.

    • For all airplanes: The final terminating action, installing serviceable T/R halves, is specified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0094, dated July 29, 2014.

    • For all airplanes: New airworthiness limitations, Airworthiness Limitations 78-AWL-01 and 78-AWL-02, that need to be incorporated in the maintenance or inspection program are specified in Boeing 777 Maintenance Planning Data (MPD) Document, Section 9, Airworthiness Limitations (AWLs) and Certification Maintenance Requirements (CMRs), D622W001-9, Revision dated October 2014.

    Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    We reviewed the following service information. This service information is reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by the means identified in the ADDRESSES section of this SNPRM.

    • Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010. This service information describes procedures for a review of the airplane maintenance records to determine whether sealant was added to insulation blankets around compression pad fittings and powered door opening system (PDOS) fittings; inspections of the T/R structure; and related investigative and corrective actions.

    • Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0094, dated July 29, 2014. This service information describes procedures for installing serviceable T/R halves.

    • Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082, Revision 1, dated June 15, 2015; and Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013. This service information describes, among other actions, procedures for inspections of the T/R structure, and related investigative and corrective actions. Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013, also describes, for airplanes on which the actions specified Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, dated November 29, 2009, have been done, procedures for installation of click bond covers and bracket, a general visual inspection of the compression fitting for incorrect pin orientation, and related investigative and corrective actions.

    • Airworthiness Limitations 78-AWL-01, Thrust Reverser Thermal Protection System; and 78-AWL-02, Thrust Reverser Inner Wall; as specified in Boeing 777 Maintenance Planning Data (MPD) Document, Section 9, Airworthiness Limitations (AWLs) and Certification Maintenance Requirements (CMRs), D622W001-9, Revision dated October 2014. Airworthiness Limitation 78-AWL-01 describes an inspection of the T/R TPS on both engines. Airworthiness Limitation 78-AWL-02 describes an inspection of the T/R inner wall.

    Comments

    We gave the public the opportunity to comment on the NPRM (76 FR 3561, January 20, 2011). The following presents the comments received on the NPRM and the FAA's response to each comment.

    Support for the NPRM (76 FR 3561, January 20, 2011)

    Boeing concurred with the contents of the NPRM (76 FR 3561, January 20, 2011).

    Requests To Include Terminating Action

    American Airlines (AAL), Delta Air Lines, and Air New Zealand requested that we revise the NPRM (76 FR 3561, January 20, 2011) to allow installation of a TPS, which is described in Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013. The commenters proposed that the TPS installation terminate the proposed repetitive inspections of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010, which are specified in the NPRM.

    We partially agree with the request. We agree to provide a terminating action for the inspections specified in this proposed AD. However, we do not agree that installation of a TPS as described in Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013, would provide an adequate level of safety to completely address the identified unsafe condition. Instead, we have determined that installing serviceable T/R halves as specified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0094, dated July 29, 2014, is terminating action for the inspections specified in this proposed AD. We have also determined that installing serviceable T/R halves (see Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0094, dated July 29, 2014, for definition of serviceable) and revising the maintenance or inspection program to incorporate new airworthiness limitations addresses the identified unsafe condition. We have added the proposed requirement to install serviceable T/R halves to paragraph (l) of this AD and we have added the proposed requirement to revise the maintenance or inspection program to paragraph (n) of this AD.

    Request To Correct Work Package Reference

    AAL requested that we revise paragraph (i) of the proposed AD, which incorrectly referred to the compliance time for Work Packages 2 and 5 “or Work Packages 2 and 6.” The correct reference is to the compliance time for Work Packages 2 and 5 “or Work Packages 5 and 6.”

    We agree with this request, and have changed the references accordingly in paragraph (h)(2) in this proposed AD, which was paragraph (i) in the original proposed AD.

    We also note a similar typographical error in the preamble of the NPRM (76 FR 3561, January 20, 2011), in the “Relevant Service Information” section, under the subsection titled “Work Package 6” for Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010. That subsection incorrectly specified that Work Package 6 may be done as an option to Work Package 2, if the shorter repetitive inspection intervals specified in “Work Package 2” are followed. The correct intervals are specified in “Work Package 6.” The “Relevant Service Information” section is not repeated in this proposed AD, however, so we have not changed this proposed AD regarding this issue. We have provided a general description of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010 in the “Related Service Information under 1 CFR part 51” section of this proposed AD.

    Request To Remove Certain Service Bulletin Exception

    AAL requested that we remove paragraph (k) from the proposed AD, which explained that where the Condition column in paragraph 1.E., “Compliance,” of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010, referred to “total flight cycles,” it means “total flight cycles as of the effective date of this AD.” AAL was concerned that total flight cycles are stated to be total flight cycles on the airplane rather than total flight cycles on the T/R half. AAL reported that it is not uncommon for the total flight cycles of the T/R half to differ from the total flight cycles of the airframe, because T/Rs are line-replacement units.

    We partially agree. We agree that those compliance times, in terms of total flight cycles, should apply to each T/R half, although we had inadvertently specified total flight cycles on the airplane. We disagree, however, to remove paragraph (k) of the original proposed AD, which is paragraph (h)(4) in this proposed AD. The intent of paragraph (h)(4) of this proposed AD is to provide a relative starting date from which to establish the compliance time; no such starting point was provided in the service information. We have retained the exception in paragraph (h)(4) in this proposed AD, but changed “airplanes with the specified total flight cycles” to “each T/R half with the specified total flight cycles as of the effective date of this AD.”

    Requests To Allow Future Aircraft Maintenance Manual (AMM) Revisions

    AAL stated that Boeing intends to revise AMM 78-31-06, which is referenced in Work Package 1 of the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010. AAL recommended that we revise paragraph (g)(1) of the proposed AD to allow the use of any revision of that AMM during the inspection specified in Work Package 1. AAL stated that the AD does not specify which revision levels of AMM 78-31-06 are acceptable for this inspection.

    We disagree that it is necessary to revise the NPRM (76 FR 3561, January 20, 2011) in response to this request. Use of a specific revision level of an AMM is not required during the accomplishment of the actions specified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010. An operator can therefore use a new AMM revision during that inspection without requesting FAA approval of an alternative method of compliance (AMOC). We have not changed this proposed AD regarding this issue.

    Request To Allow Organization Designation Authorization (ODA) Approval of Repairs

    AAL was concerned about the effect on its operation of the proposed requirement for FAA approval of certain repairs. AAL recommended that we revise the NPRM (76 FR 3561, January 20, 2011) to provide Boeing repair approval authority. AAL added that Boeing's technical and engineering support can support any situation and avoid grounding an airplane.

    We partially agree with the request. We agree to allow Boeing repair approval authority for structural aspects of the repair, but the FAA must approve non-structural aspects of any repair. We have added new paragraph (r)(3) in this proposed AD to delegate the authority to the Boeing Commercial Airplanes ODA to approve AMOCs for structural repairs that may be conditionally required by this AD.

    Request To Allow Flexibility in Work Accomplishment

    AAL requested that we revise the NPRM (76 FR 3561, January 20, 2011) to allow airlines the flexibility to reorganize the proposed actions in such a way as to meet the work requirements and more easily fit the work into airline practices. AAL stated that forcing all airlines to do the actions strictly in alignment with the work package sequence in the service information could lead to confusion and the increased potential for noncompliance.

    We agree with the intent of the request. Paragraph (g) of this proposed AD refers to Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010, as the appropriate source of service information for doing the actions in that paragraph. Note 2 of paragraph 3.A., “General Information,” of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010, states, “You can do each Work Package independently or at the same time. Refer to Service Bulletin Paragraph 1.E, Compliance, for when to do the work packages.” Therefore, for paragraph (g) of this proposed AD, operators are already allowed to combine work packages or otherwise adjust the procedure sequence as necessary to fit their work plan, provided the configuration meets the type design of the airplane before it is returned to service and the work package is done within the compliance time specified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010. We have not revised this proposed AD regarding this issue.

    Request To Allow Alternative Sealant Curing

    AAL reported that Boeing has agreed to develop alternative methods for sealant curing that would reduce the time to achieve an adequate cure. AAL therefore requested that we revise paragraph (g) of the proposed AD to allow use of this alternative sealant curing method.

    We disagree with the request. While acceptable alternative cure methods might exist, the commenter did not supply sufficient information on the proposed cure process to allow the FAA to approve that process as part of the AD. Operators may propose alternative cure methods via the AMOC process as specified in paragraph (r) of this proposed AD. We have not changed this proposed AD regarding this issue.

    FAA's Determination

    We are proposing this SNPRM because we evaluated all the relevant information and determined the unsafe condition described previously is likely to exist or develop in other products of the same type design. Certain changes described above expand the scope of the NPRM (76 FR 3561, January 20, 2011). As a result, we have determined that it is necessary to reopen the comment period to provide additional opportunity for the public to comment on this SNPRM.

    Proposed Requirements of This SNPRM

    This SNPRM would require accomplishing the actions specified in the service information described previously, except as discussed under “Difference Between this SNPRM and the Service Information.” Refer to Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010; Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0094, dated July 29, 2014; Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082, Revision 1, dated June 15, 2015; and Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013; for details on the procedures and compliance times.

    The phrase “related investigative actions” is used in this SNPRM. “Related investigative actions” are follow-on actions that (1) are related to the primary action, and (2) further investigate the nature of any condition found. Related investigative actions in an AD could include, for example, inspections.

    The phrase “corrective actions” is used in this SNPRM. “Corrective actions” are actions that correct or address any condition found. Corrective actions in an AD could include, for example, repairs.

    Differences Between This SNPRM and the Service Information

    Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013, describe procedures for a general visual inspection of the perforated side of the T/R inner wall aft of the IP8 and the HP3 bleed port exits for color that is different than the normal T/R perforated wall color; a general visual inspection of the compression fitting for incorrect pin orientation; and a general visual inspection of the EEC wire bundles and clips for damage. However, this SNPRM would require detailed inspections instead of general visual inspections. Detailed inspections are necessary in order to adequately determine if the specified condition exists. This difference has been coordinated with Boeing.

    Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0094, dated July 29, 2014, specifies a compliance time of 5 years for doing the installation, but this SNPRM would require a compliance time of 48 months to ensure the safety of the fleet in light of the identified unsafe condition. This difference has been coordinated with Boeing.

    Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013, specifies a compliance time of 4 years for installation of click bond covers and bracket, and washer replacement; and for the general visual inspection of the compression fitting for incorrect pin orientation, a compliance time of 2,000 flight-cycles after accomplishing a certain work package (these actions are for airplanes on which the actions specified Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, dated November 29, 2009, have been done). This SNPRM would require these actions to be done prior to or concurrently with the inspection specified in paragraph (i) of this SNPRM. These actions must be done first in order to accomplish the inspections specified in paragraph (i) of this SNPRM. We have coordinated this difference with Boeing.

    Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010; Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013; Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082, Revision 1, dated June 15, 2015; and Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0094, dated July 29, 2014; specify contacting the manufacturer for instructions on how to repair certain conditions. Instead, this SNPRM would require repairing those conditions in one of the following ways:

    • In accordance with a method that we approve; or

    • Using data that meet the certification basis of the airplane, and that have been approved by the Boeing Commercial Airplanes ODA whom we have authorized to make those findings.

    Other Related Rulemaking

    On March 31, 2005, we issued AD 2005-07-24, Amendment 39-14049 (70 FR 18285, April 11, 2005), for certain Boeing Model 777-200 and -300 series airplanes. AD 2005-07-24 requires inspecting the T/Rs for damage of the insulation blankets, the inner wall, and the compression and drag link fittings; and repair if necessary. AD 2005-07-24 also requires applying sealant to certain areas of the T/R. AD 2005-07-24 was prompted by two reports of T/R failure. Investigation revealed that the inner wall of the T/Rs had collapsed from exposure to hot engine core compartment air. We issued AD 2005-07-24 to prevent failure of a T/R and adjacent components and their consequent separation from the airplane, which could result in a rejected takeoff (RTO) and cause asymmetric thrust and consequent loss of control of the airplane during reverse thrust operation. If an RTO does not occur, these separated components could cause structural damage to the airplane or damage to other airplanes and possible injury to people on the ground.

    This SNPRM would terminate the actions required by paragraphs (f), (g), and (h) of AD 2005-07-24, Amendment 39-14049 (70 FR 18285, April 11, 2005), by accomplishment of any of the following actions specified in this SNPRM:

    • The actions specified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010 (paragraph (g) of this SNPRM).

    • Certain inspections and actions specified in Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082, Revision 1, dated June 15, 2015; and Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013 (paragraphs (i), (j), and (k) of this SNPRM).

    • The installation specified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0094, dated July 29, 2014 (paragraph (l) of this SNPRM).

    Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this proposed AD affects 55 of U.S. registry. We estimate the following costs to comply with this proposed AD:

    Estimated Costs Action Work hours Average labor rate per hour Parts cost Cost per product Fleet cost Actions per Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010 Up to 79 work-hours, per T/R half 85 $0 Up to $6,715 per T/R half $0 (No airplanes on the U.S. Register are in the configuration specified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010.) Actions per Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013 Up to 48 work-hours, per T/R half 85 $0 Up to $4,080 per T/R half Up to $897,600 (4 T/R halves per airplane). Inspections per Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082, Revision 1, dated June 15, 2015 Up to 39 work-hours, per T/R half 85 $0 Up to $3,315 per T/R half $0 (No airplanes on the U.S. Register are in the configuration specified in Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082, Revision 1, dated June 15, 2015.) Maintenance or Inspection Program Revision 1 work-hour 85 $0 $85 $4,675. T/R half installation per Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0094, dated July 29, 2014 Up to 206 work-hours, per T/R half 85 Up to $400,651 per T/R half. 1 Up to $418,161 per T/R half Up to $91,995,420 (4 T/R halves per airplane).2 1 The cost of parts is split into two major parts: (1) TPS blankets and (2) inner wall structure. The vast majority of the cost associated with the TPS upgrade has already been completed. In addition, nearly half of the inner wall structure modification has already been done. 2 The fleet cost estimate above is based on just a general estimate for a given airplane with two engines having two T/R halves for each engine. Not all tasks required by this SNPRM and specified in the service information would need to be done for a given T/R half. For a given TR half, it may only be necessary to accomplish certain actions or none for compliance, depending on its configuration status. We have no data to determine any given T/R half configuration to determine the cost for each T/R half to do the applicable actions for that T/R half. The majority of this cost has already been incurred.

    We have received no definitive data that would enable us to provide cost estimates for the on-condition actions specified in this SNPRM.

    According to the manufacturer, some of the costs of this proposed AD may be covered under warranty, thereby reducing the cost impact on affected individuals. We do not control warranty coverage for affected individuals. As a result, we have included all costs in our cost estimate.

    Authority for This Rulemaking

    Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety. 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.

    We are issuing this rulemaking under the authority described in Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart III, Section 44701: “General requirements.” Under that section, Congress charges the FAA with promoting safe flight of civil aircraft in air commerce by prescribing regulations for practices, methods, and procedures the Administrator finds necessary for safety in air commerce. This regulation is within the scope of that authority because it addresses an unsafe condition that is likely to exist or develop on products identified in this rulemaking action.

    Regulatory Findings

    We determined that this proposed AD would not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132. This proposed AD would not have a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national Government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.

    For the reasons discussed above, I certify this proposed regulation:

    (1) Is not a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866,

    (2) Is not a “significant rule” under the DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979),

    (3) Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska, and

    (4) Will not have a significant economic impact, positive or negative, on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

    Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, Incorporation by reference, Safety.

    The Proposed Amendment

    Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA proposes to amend 14 CFR part 39 as follows:

    PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES 1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701.

    § 39.13 [Amended]
    2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD): The Boeing Company: Docket No. FAA-2011-0027; Directorate Identifier 2010-NM-127-AD. (a) Comments Due Date

    We must receive comments by November 9, 2015.

    (b) Affected ADs

    This AD affects AD 2005-07-24, Amendment 39-14049 (70 FR 18285, April 11, 2005).

    (c) Applicability

    This AD applies to The Boeing Company Model 777-200 and -300 series airplanes, certificated in any category, equipped with Rolls-Royce Model RB211-Trent 800 engines.

    (d) Subject

    Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 78, Engine exhaust.

    (e) Unsafe Condition

    This AD was prompted by reports of thrust reverser (T/R) events related to thermal damage of the T/R inner wall. We are issuing this AD to detect and correct a degraded T/R inner wall panel, which could lead to failure of the T/R and adjacent components and their consequent separation from the airplane, and which could result in a rejected takeoff (RTO) and cause asymmetric thrust and consequent loss of control of the airplane during reverse thrust operation. If a T/R inner wall overheats, separated components could cause structural damage to the airplane, damage to other airplanes, or possible injury to people on the ground.

    (f) Compliance

    Comply with this AD within the compliance times specified, unless already done.

    (g) Records Review, Inspections, and Related Investigative and Corrective Actions for Airplanes With Pre-Thermal Protection System (TPS) Insulation Blankets (Part Numbers (P/Ns) 315W5113-(XX) and 315W5010-(XX)) Installed

    For airplanes with pre-TPS insulation blankets, P/Ns 315W5113-(XX) and 315W5010-(XX): Except as required by paragraphs (h)(1), (h)(2), (h)(3), and (h)(4) of this AD, at the applicable time in paragraph 1.E., “Compliance,” of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010, review the airplane maintenance records to determine whether sealant was added to insulation blankets around the compression pad fittings and the powered door opening system (PDOS) fitting; do the applicable actions specified in paragraphs (g)(1), (g)(2), (g)(3), (g)(4), (g)(5), and (g)(6) of this AD; and do all applicable related investigative and corrective actions; in accordance with the applicable work packages of the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010, except as required by paragraph (h)(5) of this AD. Do all applicable related investigative and corrective actions before further flight. Repeat the applicable inspections, replacement, and installations required by paragraphs (g)(1), (g)(2), (g)(3), (g)(4), (g)(5), and (g)(6) of this AD thereafter at the applicable intervals specified in paragraph 1.E., “Compliance,” of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010.

    (1) Do a detailed inspection of all T/R inner wall insulation blanket edges, grommet holes, penetrations, and seams for sealant that is cracked, has gaps, is loose, or is missing; do a general visual inspection of click bond studs, blanket studs, and temporary fasteners; and replace sealant as applicable.

    (2) Do the actions specified by either paragraph (g)(2)(i) or (g)(2)(ii) of this AD.

    (i) Do a full inner wall panel non-destructive test (NDT) inspection for delamination and disbonding of each T/R half, and do a general visual inspection for areas of thermal degradation.

    (ii) Do a limited area NDT inspection of the inner wall panel of each T/R half for delamination and disbonding, and do a general visual inspection for areas of thermal degradation.

    (3) Do a general visual inspection of theT/R perforated wall aft of the intermediate pressure compressor 8th stage (IP8) and the high pressure compressor 3rd stage (HP3) bleed port exits for a color that is different from that of the general area.

    (4) Do a detailed inspection of the PDOS lug bushings on the upper number 1 compression pad fittings to detect hole elongation, deformation, and contact with the PDOS actuator; and install a PDOS actuator rod and sealant.

    (5) Do an NDT inspection for unsatisfactory number 1 upper and numbers 1 and 2 lower compression pad fittings.

    (6) Install and seal insulation blankets.

    (h) Exceptions to Specifications of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, Dated May 6, 2010

    (1) Where paragraph 1.E., “Compliance,” of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010, specifies a compliance time “after the date on the original issue of this service bulletin,” this AD requires compliance within the specified compliance time after the effective date of this AD.

    (2) Where table 2 of paragraph 1.E., “Compliance,” in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010, specifies a compliance time of “2,000 flight cycles after the date of the operator's own inspections,” for doing Work Packages 2 and 5, or Work Packages 5 and 6, this AD requires compliance within 2,000 flight cycles after the date of the operator's own inspections, or within 12 months after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs later.

    (3) Where the Condition column in table 2 of paragraph 1.E., “Compliance,” of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010, refers to aT/R half that has or has not been inspected before “the date on this service bulletin,” this AD requires compliance for each corresponding T/R half that has or has not been inspected before the effective date of this AD.

    (4) Where the Condition column in tables 2 and 3 of paragraph 1.E., “Compliance,” of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010, refers to “total flight cycles,” this AD applies to each T/R half with the specified total flight cycles as of the effective date of this AD.

    (5) Where Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 2, dated May 6, 2010, specifies to contact Boeing for appropriate action: Before further flight, repair using a method approved in accordance with the procedures specified in paragraph (r) of this AD.

    (i) Repetitive NDT and Additional Inspections for Airplanes With TPS Insulation Blankets (P/N 315W5115-(XX)) Installed

    For airplanes with TPS insulation blankets, P/N 315W5115-(XX): Within 2,000 flight cycles after doing any NDT inspection specified in Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071; or within 2,000 flight cycles after doing any NDT inspection specified in Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082; or within 30 days after the effective date of this AD; whichever occurs latest; do the inspections specified in paragraphs (i)(1) and (i)(2) of this AD, and do all applicable related investigative and corrective actions, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013, or in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082, Revision 1, dated June 15, 2015, as applicable; except as required by paragraph (m) of this AD. Do all applicable related investigative and corrective actions before further flight. Repeat the inspections specified in paragraphs (i)(1) and (i)(2) of this AD thereafter at the applicable time specified in paragraph 1.E., “Compliance,” of Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013; or Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082, Revision 1, dated June 15, 2015; as applicable.

    (1) Do an NDT inspection of the full T/R inner wall panel for delaminations and disbonds.

    (2) Do a detailed inspection of the perforated side of the T/R inner wall aft of the IP8 and the HP3 bleed port exits for color that is different from the normal T/R perforated wall color.

    (j) Concurrent Requirements for Paragraph (i) of This AD

    For airplanes with TPS insulation blankets, part number P/N 315W5115-(XX) on which any action specified in Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071 have been done but the actions specified paragraphs (j)(1) and (j)(2) of this AD have not been done: Prior to or concurrently with doing the inspection required by paragraph (i) of this AD, do the actions specified in paragraphs (j)(1) and (j)(2) of this AD, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013, except as required by paragraph (m) of this AD.

    (1) Install click bond covers and bracket and replace the washers.

    (2) Do a detailed inspection of the compression fitting for incorrect pin orientation, and do all applicable related investigative and corrective actions. Do all applicable related investigative and corrective actions before further flight.

    (k) Repetitive Electronic Engine Control (EEC) Wire Bundle Inspections for Airplanes With TPS Insulation Blankets (P/N 315W5115-(XX)) Installed

    For airplanes with TPS insulation blankets, part number P/N 315W5115-(XX): Do the inspections specified in paragraph (k)(1) or (k)(2) of this AD, as applicable.

    (1) For airplanes on which any inspection specified in Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071 has been done: Within 2,000 flight hours after doing a detailed inspection of the EEC wire bundles and clips specified in Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, or within 500 flight hours after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs later; do a detailed inspection of the EEC wire bundles and clips for damage, and do all applicable corrective actions, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013, except as required by paragraph (m) of this AD. Do all applicable corrective actions before further flight. Repeat the inspection thereafter at the applicable time specified in table 5 of paragraph 1.E., “Compliance,” of Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013.

    (2) For airplanes on which any inspection specified in Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082 has been done: Within 2,000 flight hours after doing a detailed inspection of the EEC wire bundles and clips specified in Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0082, or within 500 flight hours after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs later; do a detailed inspection for damage of the EEC wire bundles and clips, and do all applicable corrective actions, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082, Revision 1, dated June 15, 2015, except as required by paragraph (m) of this AD. Do all applicable corrective actions before further flight. Repeat the inspection thereafter at the applicable time specified in paragraph 1.E., “Compliance,” of Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082, Revision 1, dated June 15, 2015.

    (l) T/R Inner Wall Installation

    Within 48 months after the effective date of this AD: Install serviceable T/R halves, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0094, dated July 29, 2014, except as required by paragraph (m) of this AD. The definition of a serviceable T/R half is specified in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0094, dated July 29, 2014. Accomplishing the installation specified in this paragraph and the revision to the maintenance or inspection program required by paragraph (n) of this AD terminates the actions required by paragraphs (g), (i), (j), and (k) of this AD.

    (m) Exceptions to Service Information Specified in Paragraphs (i), (j), (k), and (l) of This AD

    Where Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0094, dated July 29, 2014; Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082, Revision 1, dated June 15, 2015; and Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 2, dated July 23, 2013; specify to contact Boeing for appropriate action: Before further flight, repair using a method approved in accordance with the procedures specified in paragraph (r) of this AD.

    (n) Revise the Maintenance or Inspection Program

    Within 30 days after the effective date of this AD, revise the maintenance or inspection program, as applicable, to incorporate Airworthiness Limitations 78-AWL-01, Thrust Reverser Thermal Protection System; and 78-AWL-02, Thrust Reverser Inner Wall; as specified in Boeing 777 Maintenance Planning Data (MPD) Document, Section 9, Airworthiness Limitations (AWLs) and Certification Maintenance Requirements (CMRs), D622W001-9, Revision dated October 2014.

    (1) The initial compliance time for Airworthiness Limitation 78-AWL-01, Thrust Reverser Thermal Protection System, as specified in Boeing 777 Maintenance Planning Data (MPD) Document, Section 9, Airworthiness Limitations (AWLs) and Certification Maintenance Requirements (CMRs), D622W001-9, Revision dated October 2014, is concurrent with the next inspection required by paragraph (i) of this AD, or within 30 days after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs later.

    (2) The initial compliance time for Airworthiness Limitation 78-AWL-02, Thrust Reverser Inner Wall, as specified in Boeing 777 Maintenance Planning Data (MPD) Document, Section 9, Airworthiness Limitations (AWLs) and Certification Maintenance Requirements (CMRs), D622W001-9, Revision dated October 2014, is at the applicable time specified in paragraph (n)(2)(i) or (n)(2)(ii) of this AD.

    (i) For airplanes on which any inspections required by paragraph (i) of this AD are done: Concurrent with the next inspection required by paragraph (i) of this AD; or within 30 days after the effective date of this AD; whichever occurs later.

    (ii) For airplanes on which the installation required by paragraph (l) of this AD is done: The later of the times specified in paragraph (n)(2)(ii)(A) and (n)(2)(ii)(B) of this AD.

    (A) Within 1,125 days or 6,000 flight cycles, whichever occurs first after accomplishing the installation required by paragraph (l) of this AD.

    (B) Within 30 days after the effective date of this AD.

    (o) No Alternative Actions or Intervals

    After the the maintenance or inspection program, as applicable, has been revised as required by paragraph (n) of this AD, no alternative actions (e.g., inspections) or intervals may be used unless the actions or intervals are approved as an alternative method of compliance (AMOC) in accordance with the procedures specified in paragraph (r) of this AD.

    (p) Credit for Previous Actions

    (1) This paragraph provides credit for the actions specified in paragraph (g) of this AD, if those actions were performed before the effective date of this AD using Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, dated June 23, 2008; or Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-78A0065, Revision 1, dated January 29, 2009. This service information is not incorporated by reference in this AD.

    (2) This paragraph provides credit for the actions specified in paragraph (i) of this AD, if those actions were performed before the effective date of this AD using any service information specified in paragraphs (p)(2)(i), (p)(2)(ii), and (p)(2)(iii) of this AD. This service information is not incorporated by reference in this AD.

    (i) Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082, dated November 9, 2011.

    (ii) Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, dated November 25, 2009.

    (iii) Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 1, dated September 8, 2010.

    (3) This paragraph provides credit for the actions specified in paragraph (j) of this AD, if those actions were performed before the effective date of this AD using Boeing Special Attention Service Bulletin 777-78-0071, Revision 1, dated September 8, 2010. This service information is not incorporated by reference in this AD.

    (4) This paragraph provides credit for the actions specified in paragraph (k)(2) of this AD, if those actions were performed before the effective date of this AD using Boeing Service Bulletin 777-78-0082, dated November 9, 2011. This service information is not incorporated by reference in this AD

    (q) Terminating Action for AD 2005-07-24, Amendment 39-14049 (70 FR 18285, April 11, 2005)

    Accomplishing the actions specified in paragraph (q)(1), (q)(2), or (q)(3) of this AD terminates the actions required by paragraphs (f), (g), and (h) of AD 2005-07-24, Amendment 39-14049 (70 FR 18285, April 11, 2005).

    (1) The actions required by paragraph (g) of this AD.

    (2) The inspections required by paragraphs (i) and (k) of this AD, and, as applicable, the actions required by paragraph (j) of this AD.

    (3) The installation specified in paragraph (l) of this AD.

    (r) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    (1) The Manager, Seattle Aircraft Certification Office (ACO), FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. In accordance with 14 CFR 39.19, send your request to your principal inspector or local Flight Standards District Office, as appropriate. If sending information directly to the manager of the ACO, send it to the attention of the person identified in paragraph (s)(1) of this AD. Information may be emailed to: [email protected]

    (2) Before using any approved AMOC, notify your appropriate principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight standards district office/certificate holding district office.

    (3) An AMOC that provides an acceptable level of safety may be used for any structural repair required by this AD if it is approved by the Boeing Commercial Airplanes Organization Designation Authorization (ODA) that has been authorized by the Manager, Seattle ACO, to make those findings. For a repair method to be approved, the repair must meet the certification basis of the airplane, and the approval must specifically refer to this AD.

    (s) Related Information

    (1) For more information about this AD, contact Kevin Nguyen, Aerospace Engineer, Propulsion Branch, ANM-140S, FAA, Seattle Aircraft Certification Office (ACO), 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, Washington 98057-3356; phone: 425-917-6501; fax: 425-917-6590; email: [email protected]

    (2) For service information identified in this AD, contact Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Attention: Data & Services Management, P.O. Box 3707, MC 2H-65, Seattle, WA 98124-2207; telephone 206-544-5000, extension 1; fax 206-766-5680; Internet https://www.myboeingfleet.com. You may view this referenced service information at the FAA, at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221.

    Issued in Renton, Washington, on September 16, 2015. Michael Kaszycki, Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24344 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA-2015-3942; Directorate Identifier 2014-SW-064-AD] RIN 2120-AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation (Sikorsky) Helicopters AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

    SUMMARY:

    We propose to supersede airworthiness directive (AD) 2014-07-04R1 for certain Sikorsky Model S-92A helicopters. AD 2014-07-04R1 currently requires repetitive inspections in the upper deck area for incorrectly installed clamps and chafing between the electrical wires and the hydraulic lines and replacing any unairworthy wires or hydraulic lines. Since we issued AD 2014-07-04R1, the manufacturer has developed an alteration that corrects the unsafe condition described in AD 2014-07-04R1. This proposed AD would require altering the wiring system in the upper deck area. These proposed actions are intended to prevent a fire in an area of the helicopter without extinguishing capability and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter.

    DATES:

    We must receive comments on this proposed AD by November 24, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may send comments by any of the following methods:

    Federal eRulemaking Docket: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for sending your comments electronically.

    Fax: 202-493-2251.

    Mail: Send comments 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 20590-0001.

    Hand Delivery: Deliver to the “Mail” address between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

    Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2015-3942; or in person at the Docket Operations Office between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this proposed AD, the economic evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for the Docket Operations Office (telephone 800-647-5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt.

    For service information identified in this proposed AD, contact Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation, Customer Service Engineering, 124 Quarry Road, Trumbull, CT 06611; telephone 1-800-Winged-S or 203-416-4299; email [email protected]. You may review service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Room 6N-321, Fort Worth, Texas 76177.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ian Lucas, Aviation Safety Engineer, Boston Aircraft Certification Office, Engine & Propeller Directorate, FAA, 12 New England Executive Park, Burlington, Massachusetts 01803; telephone (781) 238-7757; email [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Comments Invited

    We invite you to participate in this rulemaking by submitting written comments, data, or views. We also invite comments relating to the economic, environmental, energy, or federalism impacts that might result from adopting the proposals in this document. The most helpful comments reference a specific portion of the proposal, explain the reason for any recommended change, and include supporting data. To ensure the docket does not contain duplicate comments, commenters should send only one copy of written comments, or if comments are filed electronically, commenters should submit only one time.

    We will file in the docket all comments that we receive, as well as a report summarizing each substantive public contact with FAA personnel concerning this proposed rulemaking. Before acting on this proposal, we will consider all comments we receive on or before the closing date for comments. We will consider comments filed after the comment period has closed if it is possible to do so without incurring expense or delay. We may change this proposal in light of the comments we receive.

    Discussion

    On March 28, 2014, we issued AD 2014-07-04, Amendment 39-17818 (79 FR 21385, April 16, 2014), for certain serial-numbered Sikorsky Model S92A helicopters. AD 2014-07-04 required repetitively inspecting the upper deck area for incorrectly installed clamps and chafing between the electrical wires and the hydraulic lines, replacing any unairworthy wires or hydraulic lines, and correcting any clamps that were installed incorrectly. Due to typographical errors when the AD was published, an incorrect serial number and an incorrect reference to the service information appeared in the text of the rule. On August 21, 2014, we issued AD 2014-07-04R1, Amendment 39-17964 (79 FR 54893, September 15, 2014), to correct these errors.

    Actions Since AD 2014-07-04R1 Was Issued

    Since we issued AD 2014-07-04R1 (79 FR 54893, September 15, 2014), Sikorsky has developed an alteration to correct the unsafe condition described in AD 2014-07-04R1. The alteration creates separate engine inlet and alternating current (AC) generator feeder lines, which were previously combined as an assembly. The new engine inlet feeder lines are rerouted through the cabin to the AC power distributors. The alteration also involves removing certain hydraulic to electrical clamps, which support the top deck main harnesses, and adding independent electrical brackets to create greater separation from the hydraulic lines. These proposed actions are intended to alter the wiring installation in the upper deck to prevent chafing between the electrical lines and hydraulic hoses. This condition, if not prevented, could result in a fire in an area of the helicopter without extinguishing capability and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter.

    FAA's Determination

    We are proposing this AD because we evaluated all the relevant information and determined the unsafe condition described previously is likely to exist or develop in other products of this same type design.

    Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    Sikorsky has issued Special Service Instructions SSI No. 92-070A, Revision A, dated April 25, 2014 (SSI 92-070A), which contains procedures to alter the wiring system in the upper deck area to prevent chafing. This service information is reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by means identified in the Addresses Section of this proposed AD.

    Other Related Service Information

    We also reviewed Alert Service Bulletin ASB 92-20-003, Basic Issue, dated May 5, 2014 (ASB 92-20-003). ASB 92-20-003 specifies a one-time modification of the upper deck wiring harnesses to prevent possible chafing by complying with SSI 92-070A.

    Proposed AD Requirements

    This proposed AD would require altering the wiring system in the upper deck area.

    Differences Between This Proposed AD and the Service Information

    The service information provides a compliance date of November 5, 2015; the proposed AD would require a compliance time of 150 hours TIS. Also, the service information requires submitting certain documentation to the manufacturer, and the proposed AD would not.

    Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this proposed AD would affect 20 helicopters of U.S. Registry.

    We estimate that operators may incur the following costs in order to comply with this AD. Labor costs are estimated at $85 per work hour. Rerouting the upper deck wiring system and replacing and installing new parts would take 58 work hours and $8,000 in required parts, for a total cost of $12,930 per helicopter and $258,600 for the fleet.

    Authority for This Rulemaking

    Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety. 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.

    We are issuing this rulemaking under the authority described in “Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart III, Section 44701: General requirements.” Under that section, Congress charges the FAA with promoting safe flight of civil aircraft in air commerce by prescribing regulations for practices, methods, and procedures the Administrator finds necessary for safety in air commerce. This regulation is within the scope of that authority because it addresses an unsafe condition that is likely to exist or develop on products identified in this rulemaking action.

    Regulatory Findings

    We determined that this proposed AD would not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132. This proposed AD would not have a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national Government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.

    For the reasons discussed, I certify this proposed regulation:

    1. Is not a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866;

    2. Is not a “significant rule” under the DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979);

    3. Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska to the extent that it justifies making a regulatory distinction; and

    4. Will not have a significant economic impact, positive or negative, on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

    We prepared an economic evaluation of the estimated costs to comply with this proposed AD and placed it in the AD docket.

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

    Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, Incorporation by reference, Safety.

    The Proposed Amendment

    Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA proposes to amend 14 CFR part 39 as follows:

    PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES 1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701.

    § 39.13 [Amended]
    2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by removing Airworthiness Directive (AD) 2014-07-04R1, Amendment 39-17964 (79 FR 54893, September 15, 2014), and adding the following new AD: Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation: Docket No. FAA-2015-3942; Directorate Identifier 2014-SW-064-AD. (a) Applicability

    This AD applies to Model S-92A helicopters, serial number 920006 through 920084, certificated in any category.

    (b) Unsafe Condition

    This AD defines the unsafe condition as an incorrectly installed clamp that does not provide adequate clearance to prevent chafing between the high voltage electrical lines and the hydraulic hoses. This condition could result in a fire in an area of the helicopter without extinguishing capability and subsequent loss of control of the helicopter.

    (c) Affected ADs

    This AD supersedes AD 2014-07-04R1, Amendment 39-17964 (79 FR 54893, September 15, 2014).

    (d) Comments Due Date

    We must receive comments by November 24, 2015.

    (e) Compliance

    You are responsible for performing each action required by this AD within the specified compliance time unless it has already been accomplished prior to that time.

    (f) Required Actions

    Within 150 hours time-in-service, reroute the left hand and right hand upper deck wiring system by complying with the Instructions, paragraph B, of Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation Special Service Instructions SSI No. 92-070A, Revision A, dated April 25, 2014.

    (g) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    (1) The Manager, Boston Aircraft Certification Office, FAA, may approve AMOCs for this AD. Send your proposal to: Ian Lucas, Aviation Safety Engineer, Engine & Propeller Directorate, FAA, 12 New England Executive Park, Burlington, Massachusetts 01803; telephone (781) 238-7757; email [email protected]

    (2) For operations conducted under a 14 CFR part 119 operating certificate or under 14 CFR part 91, subpart K, we suggest that you notify your principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight standards district office or certificate holding district office before operating any aircraft complying with this AD through an AMOC.

    (h) Additional Information

    Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation Alert Service Bulletin ASB 92-20-003, Basic Issue, dated May 5, 2014, which is not incorporated by reference, contains additional information about the subject of this AD. For service information identified in this AD, contact Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation, Customer Service Engineering, 124 Quarry Road, Trumbull, CT 06611; telephone 1-800-Winged-S or 203-416-4299; email [email protected]

    You may review the service information at the FAA, Office of the Regional Counsel, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Pkwy, Room 6N-321, Fort Worth, Texas 76177.

    (i) Subject

    Joint Aircraft Service Component (JASC) Code: 2910 Main Hydraulic System.

    Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on September 17, 2015. James A. Grigg, Acting Manager, Rotorcraft Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24148 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA-2015-3956; Directorate Identifier 2015-CE-032-AD] RIN 2120-AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Alpha Aviation Concept Limited Airplanes AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Transportation (DOT).

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

    SUMMARY:

    We propose to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Alpha Aviation Concept Limited Model R2160 airplanes that would supersede AD 2008-09-01. This proposed AD results from mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) originated by an aviation authority of another country to identify and correct an unsafe condition on an aviation product. The MCAI describes the unsafe condition as a need to revise the maintenance program to include the revised airworthiness limitations for the internal wing structure and wing attachment inspections. We are issuing this proposed AD to require actions to address the unsafe condition on these products.

    DATES:

    We must receive comments on this proposed AD by November 9, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may send comments by any of the following methods:

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

    Fax: (202) 493-2251.

    Mail: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590.

    Hand Delivery: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

    For service information identified in this proposed AD, contact Alpha Aviation Holdings Limited, Steele Road, RD 2 Hamilton Airport, Hamilton 3282, New Zealand, telephone: +64 7 843 9877; fax: +64 7 929 2878; Internet: http://www.alphaaviation.co.nz/. You may review copies of the referenced service information at the FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Kansas City, Missouri 64106. You may review copies of the referenced service information at the FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Kansas City, Missouri 64106. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call (816) 329-4148.

    Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2015-3956; or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this proposed AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for the Docket Office (telephone (800) 647-5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Karl Schletzbaum, Aerospace Engineer, FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Room 301, Kansas City, Missouri 64106; telephone: (816) 329-4123; fax: (816) 329-4090; email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Comments Invited

    We invite you to send any written relevant data, views, or arguments about this proposed AD. Send your comments to an address listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include “Docket No. FAA-2015-3956; Directorate Identifier 2015-CE-032-AD” at the beginning of your comments. We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of this proposed AD. We will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend this proposed AD because of those comments.

    We will post all comments we receive, without change, to http://regulations.gov, including any personal information you provide. We will also post a report summarizing each substantive verbal contact we receive about this proposed AD.

    Discussion

    On April 11, 2008, we issued AD 2008-09-01, Amendment 39-15481 (73 FR 21519; April 22, 2008) (“AD 2008-09-01”). That AD required actions intended to address an unsafe condition on certain Alpha Aviation Concept Limited Model R2160 airplanes and was based on mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) originated by an aviation authority of another country.

    Since we issued AD 2008-09-01, Alpha Aviation Concept Limited developed a longer life limit for the wing structure and wing attachments and transferred the life limit information from the related service information to the airplane maintenance manual. Subsequently, Alpha Aviation Concept Limited discovered that the analysis that allowed the life limit increase was incorrect and the previous life limit and inspection provisions of the related service bulletin should be retained.

    The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), which is the aviation authority for New Zealand, has issued AD DCA/R2000/43, dated August 7, 2015 (referred to after this as “the MCAI”), to correct an unsafe condition for the specified products. The MCAI states:

    This AD introduces a change to the airworthiness limitations for the internal wing structure and wing attachment inspections. These inspection intervals were increased and added to Section 3.2—Airworthiness Limitations of the applicable Service Manual in January 2015. Section 3.2 of the respective Service Manuals has now been revised to revert to the original inspection intervals.

    You may examine the MCAI on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2015-3956.

    Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    Alpha Aviation Concept Limited has issued Alpha Aviation APEX R2000 Service Manual, S/N 001 to 378, and Alpha Aviation R2000 Service Manual. These service manuals include a revision to Section 3: Airworthiness Limitations, Time Limits, & Maintenance Inspections, Issued August 2015. These revisions now include periodic internal wing structure and wing attachment inspections. A copy of these revisions to the Airworthiness Limitations section of the applicable service manuals are reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by the means identified in the ADDRESSES section of this NPRM.

    FAA's Determination and Requirements of the Proposed AD

    This product has been approved by the aviation authority of another country, and is approved for operation in the United States. Pursuant to our bilateral agreement with this State of Design Authority, they have notified us of the unsafe condition described in the MCAI and service information referenced above. We are proposing this AD because we evaluated all information and determined the unsafe condition exists and is likely to exist or develop on other products of the same type design.

    Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this proposed AD will affect 9 products of U.S. registry. We also estimate that it would take about 3 work-hours per product to comply with the basic requirements of this proposed AD. The average labor rate is $85 per work-hour.

    Based on these figures, we estimate the cost of the proposed AD on U.S. operators to be $2,295, or $255 per product.

    In addition, we estimate that any necessary follow-on actions would take about 12 work-hours and require parts costing $1,326, for a cost of $2,346 per product. We have no way of determining the number of products that may need these actions.

    Authority for This Rulemaking

    Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety. 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.

    We are issuing this rulemaking under the authority described in “Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart III, section 44701: General requirements.” Under that section, Congress charges the FAA with promoting safe flight of civil aircraft in air commerce by prescribing regulations for practices, methods, and procedures the Administrator finds necessary for safety in air commerce. This regulation is within the scope of that authority because it addresses an unsafe condition that is likely to exist or develop on products identified in this rulemaking action.

    Regulatory Findings

    We determined that this proposed AD would not have federalism implications under Executive Order 13132. This proposed AD would not have a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national Government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.

    For the reasons discussed above, I certify this proposed regulation:

    (1) Is not a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866,

    (2) Is not a “significant rule” under the DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034, February 26, 1979),

    (3) Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska, and

    (4) Will not have a significant economic impact, positive or negative, on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

    Air transportation, Aircraft, Aviation safety, Incorporation by reference, Safety.

    The Proposed Amendment

    Accordingly, under the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the FAA proposes to amend 14 CFR part 39 as follows:

    PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES 1. The authority citation for part 39 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    49 U.S.C. 106(g), 40113, 44701.

    § 39.13 [Amended]
    2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by removing Amendment 39-15481 (73 FR 21519; April 22, 2008), and adding the following new AD: Alpha Aviation Concept Limited: Docket No. FAA-2015-3956; Directorate Identifier 2015-CE-032-AD. (a) Comments Due Date

    We must receive comments by November 9, 2015.

    (b) Affected ADs

    This AD supersedes AD 2008-09-01, Amendment 39-15481 (73 FR 21519; April 22, 2008) (“AD 2008-09-01”).

    (c) Applicability

    This AD applies to Alpha Aviation Concept Limited Model R2160 airplanes, serial numbers (S/Ns) 001 through 378, and 160A-06001 and subsequent, certificated in any category.

    (d) Subject

    Air Transport Association of America (ATA) Code 5: Time Limits.

    (e) Reason

    This AD was prompted by mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) originated by an aviation authority of another country to identify and correct an unsafe condition on an aviation product. The MCAI describes the unsafe condition as a need to revise the maintenance program to include the revised airworthiness limitations for the internal wing structure and wing attachment inspections. We are issuing this AD to prevent failure of the wing structure and fuselage attachment due to undetected fatigue and corrosion.

    (f) Actions and Compliance

    Unless already done, before further flight after the effective date of this AD, insert the following into the Airworthiness Limitations section of the FAA-approved maintenance program (e.g., maintenance manual). These revisions to the Limitations sections incorporate the wing spar inspection upon the accumulation of 3,500 hours time-in-service (TIS) and requires a repetitive inspection thereafter every 750 hours TIS (the requirements of AD 2008-09-01):

    (1) For S/Ns 001 through 378: Insert paragraph 3.4.9, Wing 3500 hr Inspection, on pages 3-3 and 3-4, dated August 2015, of Section 3: Airworthiness Limitations, Time Limits, & Maintenance Inspections, dated August 2015, of the APEX R2000 Service Manual S/N 001 to 378, Alpha Aviation Ltd.

    (2) For S/Ns 160A-06001 and subsequent: Insert paragraph 3.4.9, Wing 3500 hr Inspection, on pages 3-3 and 3-4, dated August 2015, of Section 3: Airworthiness Limitations, Time Limits, & Maintenance Inspections, all dated August 2015, of the R2000 Service Manual, Alpha Aviation Ltd.

    (g) Other FAA AD Provisions

    The following provisions also apply to this AD:

    (1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, Standards Office, FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. Send information to ATTN: Karl Schletzbaum, Aerospace Engineer, FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Room 301, Kansas City, Missouri 64106; telephone: (816) 329-4146; fax: (816) 329-4090; email: [email protected] Before using any approved AMOC on any airplane to which the AMOC applies, notify your appropriate principal inspector (PI) in the FAA Flight Standards District Office (FSDO), or lacking a PI, your local FSDO.

    (2) Airworthy Product: For any requirement in this AD to obtain corrective actions from a manufacturer or other source, use these actions if they are FAA-approved. Corrective actions are considered FAA-approved if they are approved by the State of Design Authority (or their delegated agent). You are required to assure the product is airworthy before it is returned to service.

    (h) Related Information

    Refer to MCAI Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) AD DCA/R2000/43, dated August 7, 2015, for related information. You may examine the MCAI on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2015-3956. For service information related to this AD, contact Alpha Aviation Holdings Limited, Steele Road, RD 2 Hamilton Airport, Hamilton 3282, New Zealand, telephone: +64 7 843 9877; fax: +64 7 929 2878; Internet: http://www.alphaaviation.co.nz/. You may review copies of the referenced service information at the FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Kansas City, Missouri 64106. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call (816) 329-4148.

    Issued in Kansas City, Missouri, on September 17, 2015. Melvin Johnson, Acting Manager, Small Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24149 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No.FAA-2015-3084; Airspace Docket No. 15-AGL-13] Proposed Establishment of Class E Airspace; International Falls, MN AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM), correction.

    SUMMARY:

    This action makes a correction to the NPRM published in the Federal Register of August 27, 2015, proposing to establish Class E en route domestic airspace in the International Falls, MN area. Exclusionary reference to Canadian airspace was omitted from the regulatory text.

    DATES:

    Comments due date remains October 13, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Send comments on this proposal to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590-0001. You must identify the docket number FAA-2015-3084/Airspace Docket No. 15-AGL-13, 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/. 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. 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 CONTACT:

    Raul Garza, Jr., Central Service Center, Operations Support Group, Federal Aviation Administration, Southwest Region, 2601 Meacham Blvd., Fort Worth, TX 76137; telephone: 817-868-2927.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    History. A notice of proposed rulemaking was published in the Federal Register of August 27, 2015 (80 FR 51972). In the regulatory text of the proposed rule, exclusionary language was inadvertently omitted from the legal description of the airspace. This action makes the correction. The legal description is rewritten for clarity.

    Proposed Amendment Correction

    Accordingly, pursuant to the authority delegated to me, in the Federal Register of August 27, 2015 (80 FR 51972), FR Docket 2015-21087, the legal description on page 51973, column 2, beginning at line 31, is corrected to read as follows:

    § 71.1 [Amended] AGL MN E6 International Falls, MN [Corrected]

    That airspace extending upward from 1,200 feet above the surface within an area bounded by lat. 49°00′00″ N., long. 095°00′00″ W.; to lat. 49°00′00″ N., long. 093°30′00″ W.; to lat. 48°06′30″ N., long. 090°06′00″ W.; to lat. 47°53′00″ N., long. 090°55′00″ W.; to lat. 48°34′00″ N., long. 094°00′00″ W.; to lat. 48°40′00″ N., long. 095°00′00″ W., thence to the point of beginning, excluding that airspace within Federal airways and within Canadian airspace.

    Issued in Fort Worth, TX, on September 9, 2015. Robert W. Beck, Manager, Operations Support Group, ATO Central Service Center.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24159 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration 21 CFR Parts 201, 801, and 1100 [Docket No. FDA-2015-N-2002] RIN 0910-AH19 Clarification of When Products Made or Derived From Tobacco Are Regulated as Drugs, Devices, or Combination Products; Amendments to Regulations Regarding “Intended Uses” AGENCY:

    Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is proposing regulations to describe the circumstances in which a product made or derived from tobacco that is intended for human consumption will be subject to regulation as a drug, device, or a combination product under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the FD&C Act). This action is intended to provide direction to regulated industry and to help avoid consumer confusion.

    DATES:

    Submit either electronic or written comments on this proposed rule by November 24, 2015. See section IV.B of this document for the proposed effective date of a final rule based on this proposed rule.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, by any of the following methods:

    Electronic Submissions

    Submit electronic comments in the following way:

    • Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

    Written Submissions

    Submit written submissions in the following ways:

    Mail/Hand delivery/Courier (for paper submissions): Division of Dockets Management (HFA-305), Food and Drug Administration, 5630 Fishers Lane, Rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852.

    Instructions: All submissions received must include the Docket No. FDA-2015-N-2002 for this rulemaking. All comments received may be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided. For additional information on submitting comments, see the “Request for Comments” heading of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document.

    Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or comments received, go to http://www.regulations.gov and insert the docket number, found in brackets in the heading of this document, into the “Search” box and follow the prompts and/or go to the Division of Dockets Management, 5630 Fishers Lane, Rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Bryant Godfrey or Darin Achilles, Office of Regulations, Center for Tobacco Products, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002, 877-287-1373, [email protected]

    Executive Summary Purpose of the Proposed Rule

    The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (Tobacco Control Act) amends the FD&C Act and provides FDA with the authority to regulate tobacco products. Section 201(rr) of the FD&C Act (21 U.S.C. 321(rr)), as amended by the Tobacco Control Act, defines the term “tobacco product” as any product made or derived from tobacco that is intended for human consumption, including any component, part, or accessory of a tobacco product (except for raw materials other than tobacco used in manufacturing a component, part, or accessory of a tobacco product). Excluded from the definition of a tobacco product is any article that is a drug, device, or combination product. Any article that is a drug, device, or combination product will be regulated as such rather than as a tobacco product.

    Because some ambiguity surrounds the circumstances under which a product that is made or derived from tobacco would be regulated as a drug, device, or combination product, and the circumstances under which it would be regulated as a tobacco product, FDA is initiating this rulemaking to provide clarity regarding our interpretation of the drug and device definitions in the FD&C Act with respect to products made or derived from tobacco. This rulemaking will provide assistance for entities intending to market products made or derived from tobacco. FDA expects the rule will also assist investigators planning to use products made or derived from tobacco for an investigational use in determining the investigational use requirements that apply to their proposed studies. The rulemaking will increase clarity regarding the types of claims and other evidence that make a product made or derived from tobacco subject to regulation as a drug, device or combination product, helping consumers distinguish products made or derived from tobacco that are intended for medical use from products marketed for other uses.

    In addition, FDA is taking the opportunity to propose corresponding changes to existing regulations at §§ 201.128 and 801.4 (21 CFR 201.128 and 801.4), and to conform them to how the Agency currently applies these regulations to drugs and devices generally.

    Summary of the Major Provisions of the Regulatory Action

    Conceptually, the proposed rule follows the disease prong and the structure/function prong (with certain enumerated limitations) of the statutory definitions of “drug” and “device” (section 201(g) and (h) of the FD&C Act). Under the proposed rule, a product made or derived from tobacco and intended for human consumption would be regulated as a drug, device, or combination product in two circumstances: (1) If the product is intended for use in the diagnosis of disease or other conditions, or in the cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease; or (2) if the product is intended to affect the structure or any function of the body in any way that is different from effects of nicotine that were commonly and legally claimed in the marketing of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products prior to March 21, 2000. The proposed rule also attempts to clarify remaining circumstances where a product would be or could be regulated as a tobacco product.

    In addition, FDA is proposing to amend its existing intended use regulations for drugs and devices by inserting in §§ 201.128 and 801.4 a reference to the proposed rule to clarify the interplay between these regulations and this proposed rule, and to conform §§ 201.128 and 801.4 to reflect how the Agency currently applies them to drugs and devices.

    Costs and Benefits

    The proposed rule would generate some benefit by reducing the ambiguity in the development and marketing of products made or derived from tobacco. The proposed rule is not expected to impose significant additional costs on manufacturers who make products made or derived from tobacco, or on drug and device manufacturers generally.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background A. Definition of “Tobacco Product”

    The Tobacco Control Act was enacted on June 22, 2009 (Pub. L. 111-31), amending the FD&C Act and providing FDA with the authority to regulate tobacco products. Section 101(a) of the Tobacco Control Act amends section 201 of the FD&C Act by adding paragraph (rr), which defines the term “tobacco product.” In general, a “tobacco product” is defined as any product made or derived from tobacco that is intended for human consumption, including any component, part, or accessory of a tobacco product (except for raw materials other than tobacco used in manufacturing a component, part, or accessory of a tobacco product). Section 201(rr)(2) of the FD&C Act excludes from the definition of a tobacco product any article that is defined as a drug under section 201(g)(1), a device under section 201(h), or a combination product described in section 503(g) of the FD&C Act (21 U.S.C 353(g)). Section 201(rr)(3) of the FD&C Act explains that any article that is a drug, device, or combination product will be regulated under chapter V of the FD&C Act (the authorities for drugs and devices) rather than chapter IX (the authorities for tobacco products).1

    1 Section 201(rr)(4) of the FD&C Act prohibits a tobacco product from being marketed in combination with any other article or product regulated under the FD&C Act. This rulemaking does not address section 201(rr)(4).

    B. Drug/Device/Combination Product Definitions 1. Medical Product Definitions

    As noted in section I.A of this document, the definition of “tobacco product” excludes anything that is a “drug,” “device,” or “combination product” under the FD&C Act. The FD&C Act defines “drug” (in relevant part) as an article intended either: (1) For use in the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease (referred to as the “disease prong” of the definition), or (2) to affect the structure or any function of the body (the “structure/function prong”) (section 201(g)(1) of the FD&C Act). The FD&C Act defines a “device” (in relevant part) as an instrument, apparatus, implement, machine, contrivance, implant, in vitro reagent, or other similar or related article, including any component, part, or accessory, intended either: (1) For use in the diagnosis of disease or other conditions, or in the cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease, or (2) to affect the structure or any function of the body, and which does not achieve its primary intended purposes through chemical action within or on the body of man and which is not dependent on being metabolized for the achievement of its primary intended purposes (section 201(h) of the FD&C Act).2 Combination products are products that constitute a combination of a drug, device, or biological product (section 503(g) of the FD&C Act). Under the FD&C Act, the Secretary's determination of the primary mode of action of a combination product determines which Center at FDA will have primary jurisdiction over the product (section 503(g) of the FD&C Act).

    2 In this proposed rule, the cited language may be referred to as the “drug/device definitions.”

    FDA has previously interpreted the exclusion in the tobacco product definition to mean that if a product made or derived from tobacco is determined to have a drug or device “intended use,” it will be regulated as a medical product, not as a tobacco product. As discussed in greater detail in this document, this interpretation was qualified in Sottera, Inc. v. Food & Drug Administration, 627 F.3d 891 (D.C. Cir. 2010), in which the D.C. Circuit applied the holding of Food & Drug Administration v. Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp., 529 U.S. 120, 156 (2000), to all tobacco products. Thus, the determination of whether a product is a medical product or a tobacco product will be based on the FD&C Act and associated regulations and will also take into account relevant legal precedent (further described in section I.C of this document).

    2. How Intended Use Is Determined

    In determining a product's intended use, the Agency may look to “any . . . relevant source,” including but not limited to the product's labeling, promotional claims, and advertising (see, e.g., Action on Smoking and Health v. Harris, 655 F.2d 236, 239 (D.C. Cir. 1980); United States v. Storage Spaces Designated Nos. “8” and “49,” 777 F.2d 1363, 1366 (9th Cir. 1985), Hanson v. United States, 417 F. Supp. 30, 35 (D. Minn.), aff'd, 540 F.2d 947 (8th Cir. 1976)). For example, FDA may take into account any claim or statement made by or on behalf of a manufacturer that explicitly or implicitly promotes a product for a particular use (see, e.g., § 201.128 (drugs), § 801.4 (devices)).

    To establish a product's intended use, FDA is not bound by the manufacturer or distributor's subjective claims of intent, but rather can consider objective evidence, which may include a variety of direct and circumstantial evidence. Thus, FDA may also take into account any circumstances surrounding the distribution of the product or the context in which it is sold (see id.; see also U.S. v. Travia, 180 F.Supp.2d 115, 119 (D.D.C. 2001)). In the context of medical products, generally, circumstantial evidence often ensures that FDA is able to hold accountable firms that attempt to evade FDA medical product regulation by avoiding making express claims about their products. As FDA has previously stated, however, the Agency would not regard a firm as intending an unapproved new use for an approved or cleared medical product based solely on the firm's knowledge that such product was being prescribed or used by doctors for such use (Ref. 5).

    Thus, when a product made or derived from tobacco is marketed or distributed for an intended use that falls within the drug/device definitions, it would be regulated as a medical product, subject to the limitations discussed further in this document. Courts have recognized that products made or derived from tobacco marketed with “disease” claims and certain “structure/function” claims are drugs (see United States v. 46 Cartons . . . Containing Fairfax Cigarettes, 113 F.Supp. 336, 337, 338 (D. N.J. 1953) (cigarettes marketed for the prevention of respiratory diseases); United States v. 354 Bulk Cartons . . . Trim Reducing-Aid Cigarettes, 178 F.Supp. 847, 851 (D. N.J. 1959) (cigarettes marketed for weight reduction)).

    C. History of 1996 Rulemaking and Relevant Litigation

    Although the courts have recognized that tobacco-derived products can be regulated as medical products under the FD&C Act in certain circumstances, courts have also held that there are limitations on how the drug and device definitions can be applied to products made or derived from tobacco. This section provides a summary of FDA regulatory action and related litigation relevant to those limitations.

    In 1996, FDA issued a regulation restricting the sale and distribution of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco to children and adolescents (the 1996 rule) (61 FR 44396, August 28, 1996). This rule included FDA's determination that it had jurisdiction over cigarettes and smokeless tobacco under the FD&C Act. The basis for this determination was that cigarettes and smokeless tobacco were intended to affect the structure or function of the body, within the FD&C Act definitions of the terms “drug” and “device,” because nicotine has significant pharmacological effects. In addition, FDA found that cigarettes and smokeless tobacco were combination products consisting of the drug nicotine and device components intended to deliver nicotine to the body. In the 1996 rule, FDA concluded that cigarettes and smokeless tobacco should be regulated under the device authorities of the FD&C Act. The 1996 rule was challenged in court by a group of tobacco manufacturers, retailers, and advertisers on the grounds that FDA lacked jurisdiction to regulate tobacco products “as customarily marketed;” that the regulations exceeded FDA's authority to regulate devices; and that the advertising restrictions violated the First Amendment.

    The Supreme Court struck down the 1996 rule in Food & Drug Administration v. Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp., 529 U.S. 120, 156 (2000), holding that FDA lacked jurisdiction over tobacco products “as customarily marketed.” The Court found that Congress intended to exclude tobacco products from FDA's jurisdiction. In Brown & Williamson, the Court determined that tobacco products could not be made safe and effective for their intended uses, and therefore, FDA would have to remove them from the market, but that Congress had foreclosed such action (529 U.S. at 135-139). The Court also observed that Congress, in enacting statutes to regulate the labeling and advertising of conventional tobacco products, such as cigarettes and smokeless tobacco, had “effectively ratified FDA's long-held position” that the Agency lacked jurisdiction to regulate tobacco products “absent claims of therapeutic benefit by the manufacturer” (529 U.S. at 144).

    In 2008 and early 2009, FDA detained multiple shipments of electronic cigarettes from overseas manufacturers and denied them entry into the United States on the ground that electronic cigarettes were unapproved drug-device combination products under the FD&C Act. In April 2009, plaintiffs sought a preliminary injunction to enjoin FDA from regulating electronic cigarettes as drug-device combination products and from denying entry of those products into the United States.3 Between the filing of the lawsuit and a decision on the motion for a preliminary injunction, Congress passed the Tobacco Control Act and the President signed it into law. The District Court subsequently granted a preliminary injunction, relying on Brown & Williamson and the recently enacted Tobacco Control Act (Smoking Everywhere, Inc. v. FDA, 680 F. Supp. 2d 62 (D.D.C. 2010)). FDA appealed the decision and the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (D.C. Circuit) affirmed in Sottera, Inc. v. Food & Drug Administration, 627 F.3d 891 (D.C. Cir. 2010).4 The D.C. Circuit determined that the decision in Brown & Williamson was not limited to tobacco products that were the subject of the specific federal legislation discussed in that case. The D.C. Circuit found that under the Tobacco Control Act, all products made or derived from tobacco and intended for human consumption that are “marketed for therapeutic purposes” are subject to FDA's drug and/or device provisions, whereas “customarily marketed tobacco products” are subject to regulation as “tobacco products” (Sottera, 627 F.3d at 898-899; see also Brown & Williamson, 529 U.S. at 144-156).

    3 The original district court case was filed by Smoking Everywhere, Inc., and the case was joined by Sottera, Inc., which does business as NJOY.

    4 On January 24, 2011, the D.C. Circuit denied the government's petitions for rehearing and rehearing en banc (by the full court). See Sottera v. FDA, No. 10-5032 (D.C. Cir. Jan. 24 2011) (per curiam).

    The Court in Brown & Williamson frequently referred to “tobacco products as customarily marketed,” but never defined that phrase. The Court contrasted that phrase with “claims of therapeutic benefit” (see, e.g., 529 U.S. at 127, 158), which it also did not define. Neither of these terms is used in the FD&C Act. In Sottera, the D.C. Circuit relied on Brown & Williamson and repeated these phrases in describing contrasting types of products. The court in Sottera specifically equated “therapeutic uses” with the disease prong of the drug/device definitions in the FD&C Act and said that customarily marketed tobacco products were sold without therapeutic claims (627 F.3d at 894) and should be regulated as tobacco products under the FD&C Act, as amended by the Tobacco Control Act. But neither court provided specific guidance about what might constitute claims of therapeutic benefit, nor did they explain the relationship between “tobacco products as customarily marketed” and the structure/function prong of the drug/device definitions of the FD&C Act. In addition, no court has addressed whether certain structure/function claims for products made or derived from tobacco that generally were not made for “tobacco products as customarily marketed” should be treated as drug or device claims.5

    5 In Sottera, there are a few instances where the court's opinion could be read to suggest that all products made or derived from tobacco that do not have therapeutic claims are tobacco products as customarily marketed (627 F.3d at 895, 898-899). However, to the extent that the issue of drug/device jurisdiction over structure/function intended uses that are not related to the commonly understood effects of nicotine was not before the court, this reading is dicta in any case.

    II. Purpose of Rulemaking

    Because some ambiguity surrounds the circumstances under which a product that is made or derived from tobacco would be regulated as a drug, device, or combination product, and the circumstances under which it would be regulated as a tobacco product, we are initiating this rulemaking to provide clarity regarding our interpretation of the drug/device definitions in the FD&C Act with respect to products made or derived from tobacco. We believe that this rulemaking will provide assistance for entities intending to market products made or derived from tobacco and for entities that plan to study these products. For example, the rule is expected to help sponsors determine which FDA Center should be consulted as they develop their products and make appropriate premarket submissions to bring new products to market. FDA expects the rule will also assist investigators planning to use products made or derived from tobacco for an investigational use in determining the investigational use requirements that apply to their proposed studies. In addition, we believe it is important to avoid consumer confusion about which products are intended for medical uses versus recreational or other uses. The rulemaking will increase clarity regarding the types of claims and other evidence that make a product made or derived from tobacco subject to regulation as a drug or device, which we expect will help consumers distinguish products made or derived from tobacco that are intended for medical use from products marketed for other uses. Finally, the rulemaking will provide clarity for drug and device manufacturers generally regarding FDA's interpretation and application of its existing intended use regulations.

    In both the Brown & Williamson and Sottera decisions, the courts set forth (but did not define) two poles—“tobacco products as customarily marketed” and “claims of therapeutic benefit”—and found that the “customarily marketed” pole was not within FDA's drug/device jurisdiction, but that the “therapeutic benefit” pole was within FDA's drug/device jurisdiction. As noted in section I.C of this document, the terminology used by the courts in establishing these two poles is not the terminology used by the FD&C Act in defining drugs and devices. Instead, the FD&C Act's drug and device definitions reference, in relevant part, diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease (disease prong) and effects on the structure or any function of the body (structure/function prong). In addition, while certain products and claims may fall clearly at one pole or the other, a spectrum of products and claims may fall somewhere between the two poles. In the sections that follow, we describe our interpretation of the jurisdictional lines established by the FD&C Act's drug, device, and tobacco product definitions as informed by the decisions in Brown & Williamson and Sottera.

    A. Claims About Products Made or Derived From Tobacco That Fall Within the Disease Prong 1. Disease Prong Claims

    As discussed in section I.B, articles intended for use in the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment or prevention of disease are drugs, devices, or combination products under the FD&C Act. Products made or derived from tobacco have historically been regulated as medical products when they are marketed for intended uses that fall within the disease prong. For example, FDA has approved a number of drug products made or derived from tobacco as nicotine replacement therapies with indications to reduce withdrawal symptoms, including nicotine craving, associated with quitting smoking. Accordingly, FDA has long considered claims related to smoking cessation in the context of curing or treating nicotine addiction and its symptoms to be within FDA's “disease prong” jurisdiction.

    FDA has also taken enforcement action against products made or derived from tobacco that were marketed with claims of therapeutic benefit but that did not have approved new drug applications. For example, FDA seized cigarettes on the grounds that they were misbranded drugs when the manufacturer represented that the cigarettes were effective in preventing respiratory diseases, common cold, influenza, pneumonia, and various other ailments. (United States v. 46 Cartons . . . Containing Fairfax Cigarettes, 113 F.Supp. 336, 337, 338 (D. N.J. 1953)).

    The “therapeutic benefit” language used by the Brown & Williamson and Sottera courts has a logical relationship to the disease prong of the drug/device definition, in that “therapeutic” can be defined as “relating to the treatment of disease or disorders by remedial agents or methods or to providing or assisting in a cure.” 6 As part of this rulemaking, FDA is clarifying the categories of claims relevant to products made or derived from tobacco that FDA considers to fall within the disease prong in light of the Sottera and Brown & Williamson decisions. As discussed previously, claims related to smoking cessation have long been recognized as claims conferring drug or device jurisdiction. Smoking cessation claims have also long been associated with curing or treating nicotine addiction and its symptoms. For example, the approved labeling for nicotine replacement therapies includes the following statements: “Purpose: Stop smoking aid; Use: Reduces withdrawal symptoms, including nicotine craving, associated with quitting smoking.” 7 Against this backdrop, smoking cessation claims on any product generally create a strong suggestion of therapeutic benefit to the user that generally will be difficult to overcome absent clear context indicating that the product is not intended for use to cure or treat nicotine addiction or its symptoms, or for another therapeutic purpose.

    6 See, e.g., Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary, available at http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/therapeutic.

    7 See, e.g., approved labeling for Nicoderm CQ, Nicorette, Habitrol.

    Given the availability of FDA-approved drugs for smoking cessation, FDA believes that consumers are particularly susceptible to confusion where products made or derived from tobacco that otherwise appear to be products intended for recreational use make claims related to quitting smoking. Therefore, FDA considers claims related to smoking cessation to require careful scrutiny. Where products making claims related to quitting smoking also attempt to disclaim that use in some way, FDA intends to view such disclaimers skeptically because of the likelihood of consumer confusion. In most cases, FDA does not believe that disclaimers will sufficiently mitigate consumer confusion related to the intended therapeutic use of the product.

    FDA proposes to treat several other categories of claims for products made or derived from tobacco as falling within the disease prong of the drug/device definition. These categories of claims are discussed further in section IV (Description of Proposed Regulation). We note that sections 911(c) and 918 of the FD&C Act (21 U.S.C. 387k(c) and 387r), as amended by the Tobacco Control Act, contemplate that products intended for the treatment of tobacco dependence and for relapse prevention, among other things, may be subject to FDA's drug/device jurisdiction.

    2. Distinction Between Disease Prong Claims and Modified Risk Claims

    Through this rulemaking, FDA is also clarifying the relationship between FDA's regulation of a certain category of tobacco products—modified risk tobacco products (MRTPs)—and FDA's regulation of medical products that are intended to mitigate disease. MRTPs are tobacco products that are sold or distributed for use to reduce harm or the risk of tobacco-related disease associated with commercially marketed tobacco products (section 911(b)(1) of the FD&C Act). The phrase “sold or distributed for use to reduce harm or the risk of tobacco-related disease associated with commercially marketed tobacco products” refers to a tobacco product:

    1. That represents in its label, labeling, or advertising, either implicitly or explicitly, that:

    • The tobacco product presents a lower risk of tobacco-related disease or is less harmful than one or more other commercially marketed tobacco products;

    • the tobacco product or its smoke contains a reduced level of a substance or presents a reduced exposure to a substance; or

    • the tobacco product or its smoke does not contain or is free of a substance;

    2. That uses the descriptors “light,” “mild,” “low,” or similar descriptors in its label, labeling, or advertising; 8 or

    8 Although cigarettes had been marketed with such descriptors before the Tobacco Control Act was enacted, as of June 22, 2010, manufacturers were prohibited from manufacturing for sale or distribution any tobacco products for which the label, labeling, or advertising contains the descriptors “light,” “low,” or “mild,” or any similar descriptor, without an FDA order in effect under section 911(g) of the FD&C Act (section 911(b)(3) of the FD&C Act). Furthermore, as of July 22, 2010, manufacturers, including importers of finished tobacco products, were prohibited from introducing into the domestic commerce of the United States any tobacco product for which the label, labeling, or advertising contains the descriptors “light,” “low,” or “mild,” or any similar descriptor, irrespective of the date of manufacture, without an FDA order in effect under section 911(g) of the FD&C Act (id).

    3. For which the tobacco product manufacturer has taken any action directed to consumers through the media or otherwise, other than by means of the tobacco product's label, labeling, or advertising, after June 22, 2009, respecting the product that would be reasonably expected to result in consumers believing that the tobacco product or its smoke may present a lower risk of disease or is less harmful than one or more commercially marketed tobacco products, or presents a reduced exposure to, or does not contain or is free of, a substance or substances.

    See section 911(b)(2) of the FD&C Act.9

    9 No smokeless tobacco product shall be considered to be sold or distributed for use to reduce harm or the risk of tobacco-related disease solely because its label, labeling, or advertising uses the following phrases: “smokeless tobacco,” “smokeless tobacco product,” “not consumed by smoking,” “does not produce smoke,” “smokefree,” “smoke-free,” “without smoke,” “no smoke,” or “not smoke” (section 911(b)(2)(C) of the FD&C Act).

    Because MRTPs have the potential to be marketed as less harmful than other tobacco products, including as presenting a lower risk of tobacco-related disease than another tobacco product, FDA recognizes that there might be questions about how these products relate to FDA's medical product jurisdiction over products made or derived from tobacco that are intended for use in disease mitigation. MRTPs may have the ultimate effect of lowering disease risk for users who would otherwise use another, more harmful tobacco product. However, an important distinction between MRTPs and medical products is that, while medical products approved for disease mitigation act affirmatively to combat a disease or health condition, MRTPs present relatively less risk of disease (e.g., by presenting reduced exposure to harmful constituents relative to another tobacco product), but do not affirmatively act to mitigate or otherwise treat disease. In addition, while medical products approved for disease mitigation are determined to be both safe and effective for their approved use, MRTPs are reviewed based, in part, on a “benefit the health of the population as a whole” standard, and like other tobacco products, still expose users to inherent (if reduced) harms.

    For purposes of illustration, claims of modified risk might include claims like “contains less nicotine than [tobacco product X]”, “using [MRTP] reduces your risk of lung cancer compared to using [tobacco product X]”, and “lower level of nitrosamines than other smokeless tobacco products.” In contrast, a claim that a product “inhibits the progression of disease in adult patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)” is not an appropriate modified risk claim, but would be appropriate for a medical product approved for such an indication.

    B. Claims About Products Made or Derived From Tobacco That Fall Within the Structure/Function Prong

    As discussed in sections I.B and I.C of this document, the drug/device definitions in the FD&C Act include articles “intended to affect the structure or any function of the body,” and FDA's assertion of jurisdiction over cigarettes and smokeless tobacco in 1996 was predicated on the pharmacological effects of nicotine on the structure or function of the body. In addition, as explained previously, the Court in Brown & Williamson rejected that assertion of jurisdiction, finding that Congress did not intend for FDA to have jurisdiction over cigarettes “as customarily marketed.”

    Based on the Brown & Williamson holding and the Sottera court's application of that holding to all tobacco products, FDA believes that the appropriate inquiry in determining whether a particular product made or derived from tobacco is “customarily marketed”—and therefore outside of FDA's drug/device jurisdiction—is to determine whether any claims related to structure/function relate to effects of nicotine that were commonly and legally claimed in the marketing of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products prior to the date of the Supreme Court's decision in Brown & Williamson (March 21, 2000).

    For example, claims related to satisfaction, pleasure, enjoyment, and refreshment have been recognized as euphemisms for the delivery of a pharmacologically active dose of nicotine. While these claims relate to effects on the structure or function of the body, FDA does not consider these tobacco satisfaction and enjoyment claims to fall within its drug and device regulatory authority. Similarly, FDA does not consider claims suggesting that a tobacco product provides an alternative way of obtaining the effects of nicotine, or that a tobacco product will provide the same effects as another tobacco product—such as “satisfying smoking alternative,” “provides all the pleasure of smoking,” “get your nicotine fix,” or “provides smokers the same delight, physical and emotional feelings”—to fall within its drug and device authority; however, we invite comment on this.

    The Brown & Williamson and Sottera decisions do not reach the issue of intended uses that fall outside the disease prong of the drug/device definition and that are outside the area of “customarily marketed” tobacco product claims. FDA believes certain structure/function claims for products made or derived from tobacco continue to fall within our drug/device regulatory authority. FDA believes these structure/function claims fall into two main categories: (1) Claims that are unrelated to the pharmacological effects of nicotine, and (2) claims that were not commonly and legally made for cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products (i.e., the products addressed in the 1996 rule) prior to the Supreme Court's decision in Brown & Williamson. Thus, to the extent manufacturers intend products made or derived from tobacco to be used to affect the structure or function of the body in some manner that is not related to the effects of nicotine commonly and legally claimed prior to March 21, 2000, FDA would consider these intended uses to remain within its drug/device jurisdiction under the proposed rule. For example, if a product made or derived from tobacco is marketed with structure/function claims such as “maintain healthy lung function,” “relieve tension,” “restore mental alertness,” “maintain memory,” “support the immune system,” or “promote weight loss,” FDA would consider such intended uses to fall within its drug/device jurisdiction.

    FDA believes that it is important to distinguish structure/function intended uses that were not commonly and legally claimed in the marketing of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products prior to the decision in Brown & Williamson. Structure/function intended uses are a long-standing and important aspect of FDA's medical product jurisdiction, grounded in the statutory definitions of “drug” and “device” in the FD&C Act. We recognize that products made or derived from tobacco are unique because of the regulatory regime for tobacco products under the FD&C Act, and that some products made or derived from tobacco making certain structure/function claims are now outside our drug/device jurisdiction. However, we believe it is important from a public health perspective, and consistent with the FD&C Act and case law, to preserve our traditional medical product authority over products made or derived from tobacco whose intended use includes effects on the structure or function of the body that are distinct from the pharmacological effects of nicotine that were commonly and legally claimed before March 21, 2000.

    FDA believes this proposed rule will provide clarity to manufacturers about how products made or derived from tobacco will be regulated if they are marketed or distributed for certain intended uses. This clarification will allow regulated industry to plan accordingly during the product development and postmarketing phases and will help researchers understand the applicable regulatory requirements associated with the investigational use of products made or derived from tobacco.

    In addition, we believe this proposed rule will help to avoid consumer confusion about which products made or derived from tobacco are intended for a medical use (i.e., as a drug/device) versus for a recreational use. Specifically, FDA wishes to avoid situations where products intended to be sold as tobacco products are marketed with the same claims as products sold as drugs or devices. If tobacco products are marketed in ways that make them hard to distinguish from certain medical products, consumers may use tobacco products, which are inherently dangerous, in place of FDA-approved medical products that have been determined to be safe and effective for their intended use.

    C. Proposed Changes to Existing “Intended Use” Regulations

    FDA is also proposing changes to §§ 201.128 and 801.4. First, the proposed rule would insert a reference to § 1100.5 to clarify the interplay between these regulations and the proposed rule. Second, as discussed previously, the Agency does not regard a firm as intending an unapproved new use for an approved or cleared medical product based solely on that firm's knowledge that such product was being prescribed or used by doctors for such use (see Ref. 5). Accordingly, FDA is taking this opportunity to amend §§ 201.128 and 801.4 to better reflect FDA's interpretation and application of these regulations. These changes would not reflect a change in FDA's approach regarding evidence of intended use for drugs and devices. These clarifying changes to the intended use regulations would apply to drugs and devices generally, and not just to products made or derived from tobacco and intended for human consumption.

    III. Legal Authority

    Among the provisions of the FD&C Act that provide authority for this proposed rule are sections 201, 503(g), and 701(a) of the FD&C Act (21 U.S.C. 321, 353(g), 371(a)). Section 201 of the FD&C Act defines “drug,” “device,” and “tobacco product” (subsections (g)(1), (h), and (rr)(1)), and section 503(g) of the FD&C Act provides that combination products are those “that constitute a combination of a drug, device, or biological product.” Under section 701(a) of the FD&C Act, FDA has authority to issue regulations for the efficient enforcement of the FD&C Act.

    FDA regulates the manufacture, sale, and distribution of drugs, devices, combination products, and tobacco products under the authority of the FD&C Act. Although the regulatory pathways for each product category differ, each product category is subject to similar types of regulatory requirements. For example, FDA's regulatory authority for drugs, devices, combination products, and tobacco products includes authority to review and authorize the marketing of new products as well as to oversee product labeling and advertising. Thus, whether a product meets the definition of a drug, device, or tobacco product under the FD&C Act and this proposed regulation, the manufacture, sale, and distribution of the product are subject to the applicable requirements of the FD&C Act.

    IV. Description of Proposed Regulation A. Exclusion From Tobacco Product Regulation (Proposed § 1100.5)

    As described in section II of this document, the goal of this proposed rule, when finalized, is to provide clarity regarding the types of intended uses of products made or derived from tobacco that may fall within the drug/device definitions and therefore cause those products to be regulated as medical products under the FD&C Act. In describing these intended uses, the proposed rule aims to assist regulated entities in the research and development of products made or derived from tobacco by clarifying which regulatory framework (i.e., the drug/device frameworks or the tobacco framework) will apply to particular products based on their intended use. The proposed rule is also intended to reduce consumer confusion regarding which products are intended for medical use (i.e., as a drug, device, or combination product) and which may be marketed for recreational or other purposes. The proposed rule reflects the legal and regulatory considerations discussed in sections I and II of this document, including the Brown & Williamson and Sottera holdings. Finally, the proposed rule would amend the existing intended use regulations for drugs and devices by inserting in §§ 201.128 and 801.4 a reference to § 1100.5 to clarify the interplay among these regulations and this proposed rule.

    The proposed codified language states the circumstances in which a product made or derived from tobacco would be excluded from the definition of “tobacco product” and be subject to regulation as a drug, device, or combination product. Under the proposed rule, this exclusion could apply in two circumstances: (1) If the product is intended for use in the diagnosis of disease or other conditions, or in the cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease; or (2) if the product is intended to affect the structure or any function of the body, in any way that is different from effects of nicotine that were commonly and legally claimed in the marketing of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products prior to March 21, 2000.

    Conceptually, the proposed codified language follows the disease prong and the structure/function prong (with certain limitations) of the drug and device definitions.

    1. Disease Prong

    Proposed § 1100.5(a) follows the disease prong. The proposed paragraph elaborates on the statutory language for the disease prong by describing several categories of intended uses that would cause a product made or derived from tobacco to be regulated as a medical product. The categories identified in proposed § 1100.5(a) are not intended to constitute an exhaustive list; nor are these categories necessarily mutually exclusive. In addition, these categories are intended to capture concepts, rather than to suggest that the use (or omission) of particular words is dispositive with respect to FDA's medical product jurisdiction. These categories are included as examples of types of intended uses that we believe are particularly relevant for products made or derived from tobacco and that fall within the disease prong.

    2. Structure/Function Prong

    Proposed § 1100.5(b) follows the structure/function prong, but with some changes to reflect the court decisions in Brown & Williamson and Sottera. Specifically, the language in proposed § 1100.5(b) beginning “in any way that is different from . . . ” reflects the fact that, under Brown & Williamson and Sottera, certain structure/function claims about the effects of nicotine will not confer drug/device jurisdiction to the extent they reflect those made for “customarily marketed” tobacco products. This language also references “the marketing of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products” because these were the product categories considered by the Supreme Court in Brown & Williamson. March 21, 2000, is the date of the Supreme Court's ruling in Brown & Williamson.

    FDA believes that it is important to include a date limitation in proposed § 1100.5(b) to provide greater certainty about the universe of structure/function claims the Agency intends to consider when determining whether a product made or derived from tobacco is “customarily marketed.” This bright-line limitation also avoids creating a shifting standard that will cause confusion among consumers and regulated industry. FDA intends to look to the marketing of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products prior to March 21, 2000, to determine the types of structure/function claims that constitute customary tobacco product marketing. Examples of these types of claims include those related to satisfaction, pleasure, enjoyment, and refreshment (e.g., “[Brand X] refreshes while you smoke”). Cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products provide a reasonable proxy for determining how nicotine-related structure/function claims were conveyed in tobacco product marketing generally. The proposed codified language, however, applies to all products made or derived from tobacco, not just cigarettes and smokeless tobacco. The proposed codified language also applies regardless of whether a product made or derived from tobacco has been deemed to be subject to the tobacco product authorities in the FD&C Act.

    3. Intended Use

    As noted in section I.B.2 of this document, intended use may be determined from any relevant source and is not based solely on claims made in a product's labeling or advertising materials. For purposes of illustration, however, claims such as “treatment of tobacco dependence,” “wean yourself off of nicotine,” “for people who wish to quit smoking,” “stop smoking aid,” “prevent relapse,” or “stay quit” generally would fall within the intended uses described in proposed § 1100.5(a).10

    10 These and other specific claims mentioned in this document are provided solely as examples. Other claims not mentioned in this document could also reflect an intended use described in the proposed codified language. In addition, as discussed elsewhere in this document, FDA intends to consider the full context of claims for products made or derived from tobacco in making jurisdictional determinations.

    Claims such as “to reduce withdrawal symptoms,” “helps reduce symptoms including things like [list of withdrawal symptoms]” and “relieve withdrawal symptoms while you are on the plane” would be associated with an intended use for relief of nicotine withdrawal symptoms, and would also fall within the intended uses described in proposed § 1100.5(a). Withdrawal symptoms that are medically recognized as relevant to nicotine addiction may be determined by reference to standard classification and diagnostic tools such as the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) and the tenth revision of the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD-10).

    Certain structure/function claims that were not commonly and legally made in the marketing of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products before March 21, 2000, such as “promotes weight loss,” would fall within the intended uses described in proposed § 1100.5(b).

    In contrast to the examples of medical product intended use claims given in the previous paragraphs, certain other claims made about products made or derived from tobacco would not on their own create an intended use that falls within the proposed codified language.11 For example, claims such as “smoke free, spit free tobacco pleasure” or “full taste and satisfaction” may be associated with the marketing of tobacco products for refreshment, satisfaction, or enjoyment. Claims such as “great tasting tobacco satisfaction when you can't smoke,” “satisfying tobacco alternative,” or “provides the look, feel, and experience of a cigarette” may be associated with the marketing of tobacco products as smoking substitutes. And claims such as “healthier alternative to smoking,” “contains less nicotine than [another product],” or “reduces your risk of lung cancer compared to cigarettes” might be associated with MRTPs, as discussed in section II.A of this document.

    11 As previously, the specific claims mentioned in this paragraph are provided solely as examples. Other claims not mentioned here could fall outside the intended uses described in proposed § 1100.5.

    In addition, as discussed previously, a manufacturer's knowledge that an approved or cleared medical product is being used for an unapproved use, would not by itself establish a medical product intended use. To clarify FDA's policy on this point, as well as the interplay among §§ 201.128, 801.4, and proposed 1100.5, FDA is proposing revisions to §§ 201.128 and 801.4.

    For products made or derived from tobacco that are intended for investigational use, FDA will consider whether the product is being used in a clinical investigation for an intended use that brings it within the proposed codified language. If it is, the product would meet the definition of “investigational new drug” in § 312.3 (21 CFR 312.3), and the clinical investigation would be subject to the applicable requirements in 21 CFR part 312.12 Products made or derived from tobacco that are intended for investigational use but that do not meet the definition of “investigational new drug” in § 312.3 may be subject to regulation as investigational tobacco products under section 910(g) of the FD&C Act (21 U.S.C. 397j(g)). FDA encourages sponsors and researchers with questions about whether a product being used in a clinical investigation would be subject to regulation as an “investigational new drug” or as an “investigational tobacco product” to contact either the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research or the Center for Tobacco Products.

    12 Note that studies performed to meet statutory requirements in chapter IX of the FD&C Act relating to the impact of tobacco products on cessation behavior are not required to be designed as clinical investigations subject to the investigational new drug application (IND) requirements in 21 CFR part 312. Whether a study is considered a clinical investigation of an “investigational new drug” would depend on the study's design and specific objectives.

    B. Proposed Effective Date

    The Agency proposes that any final rule based on this proposal will become effective 30 days after the date of publication of the final rule in the Federal Register. During the pendency of this rulemaking, manufacturers will continue to be under an obligation to comply with all applicable provisions of the FD&C Act and applicable regulations.

    V. Federalism

    FDA has analyzed this proposed rule in accordance with the principles set forth in Executive Order 13132. FDA has determined that the proposed rule, if finalized, would not contain policies that would have substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship between the National Government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government. Accordingly, the Agency tentatively concludes that the proposed rule does not contain policies that have federalism implications as defined in the Executive order and, consequently, a federalism summary impact statement is not required.

    VI. National Environmental Policy Act

    FDA has determined under 21 CFR 25.30(h) and (k) 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.

    VII. Analysis of Impacts A. Introduction and Summary 1. Introduction

    FDA has examined the impacts of the proposed rule under Executive Order 12866, Executive Order 13563, the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601-612), and the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-4). Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 direct Agencies to assess all costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, when regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public health and safety, and other advantages; distributive impacts; and equity). The Agency believes that this proposed rule is not a significant regulatory action as defined by Executive Order 12866.

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act requires Agencies to analyze regulatory options that would minimize any significant impact of a rule on small entities. By clarifying when products made or derived from tobacco will be subject to regulation as medical products, the ambiguity that currently exists in the regulatory environment will be reduced. We cannot predict how many companies will revise labeling, advertising, or other marketing materials for their products following issuance of this rule. We note, however, that this regulation is intended to provide clarity regarding existing jurisdictional lines for products made or derived from tobacco and for drug and device manufacturers regarding FDA's interpretation and application of its existing intended use regulations; as such, any need to revise labeling, advertising, or other marketing materials or submit applications should have predated the regulation. Therefore, the Agency proposes to certify that the proposed rule will not have a significant economic burden on a substantial number of small entities.

    Section 202(a) of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 requires that Agencies prepare a written statement, which includes an assessment of anticipated costs and benefits, before proposing “any rule that includes any Federal mandate that may result in the expenditure by State, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100,000,000 or more (adjusted annually for inflation) in any one year.” The current threshold after adjustment for inflation is $144 million (Ref. 1), using the most current (2014) Implicit Price Deflator for the Gross Domestic Product. FDA does not expect this proposed rule to result in any 1-year expenditure that would meet or exceed this amount.

    2. Summary

    The proposed rule would reduce the ambiguity in the market for products made or derived from tobacco and clarify FDA's interpretation and application of its existing intended use regulations. The rule clarifies the types of claims and other evidence that would result in these products being regulated as medical products rather than tobacco products. The reduction in ambiguity should increase appropriate market participation and thus increase welfare in the market, including greater clarity and less confusion for producers and consumers. While these clarifications would impact future marketing strategies, it is not expected to result in significant changes to current marketing costs.

    B. Preliminary Regulatory Impact Analysis 1. Benefits

    Adopting the proposed rule would clarify the regulatory status of products made or derived from tobacco and how FDA interprets and applies its existing intended use regulations. This is expected to reduce the ambiguity associated with submitting a new product for approval or marketing authorization, or with initiating research of a new product. It is expected that industries are ambiguity averse.

    Ambiguity aversion is preference of certainty over uncertainty (Ref. 2). It is assumed that industries developing and manufacturing products made or derived from tobacco prefer a regulatory environment with greater certainty than one with greater ambiguity. Previous research has shown that reduction in the uncertainty of financial markets increases participation by both traders and investors (Refs. 3 and 4). The proposed rule is expected to reduce ambiguity, and this reduction in ambiguity will encourage investment and innovation.

    2. Costs

    The proposed rule is not expected to impose significant additional costs on drugs, devices, or tobacco products. FDA's regulatory authority for drugs, devices, and tobacco products includes authority to review and authorize marketing of new products, as well as to oversee product labeling and advertising. Thus, whether a product meets the definition of a drug, device, or tobacco product under the FD&C Act and this proposed regulation, its manufacture, sale, and distribution is subject to the applicable requirements of the FD&C Act. Companies may revise marketing practices to conform to the rulemaking and to ensure they are incurring the appropriate costs for their product type. We do not have evidence that this will affect many currently marketed products and as such is unlikely to impose significant new costs.

    The proposed rule does not extend FDA's authority to additional products and it does not impose any additional labeling requirements on currently regulated products. The proposed rule does not change the way FDA regulates medical products or tobacco products; it clarifies the applicable regulatory framework for products made or derived from tobacco and FDA's interpretation and application of its existing intended use regulations. This will reduce ambiguity for firms potentially seeking marketing authorization for a product as a drug, device, or tobacco product, will assist those seeking to study products made or derived from tobacco, and will help consumers differentiate between products that are intended for medical use and products marketed for other uses.

    3. Summary and Discussion

    The proposed rule is expected to reduce regulatory ambiguity in the research, development and marketing of drugs, devices, and tobacco products, as well as consumer confusion in the marketplace. The reduction in ambiguity will encourage investment and innovation. The proposed rule may affect marketing strategies, but is only clarifying when products made or derived from tobacco will be regulated as drugs or devices and FDA's interpretation and application of its existing intended use regulations. Accordingly, any costs to revise marketing strategies predated the rule, and as such the rule itself is not expected to impose significant costs.

    C. Small Entities Effects

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act requires Agencies to prepare a regulatory flexibility analysis if a proposed rule would have a significant effect on a substantial number of small businesses, non-profit organizations, local jurisdictions, or other entities. The proposed rule would reduce ambiguity in the regulatory environment for products made or derived from tobacco. We do not expect this clarification to significantly increase costs associated with marketing products made or derived from tobacco, and thus certify that the proposed rule would not significantly affect a substantial number of small businesses, non-profit organizations, local jurisdictions, or other entities.

    VIII. Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

    FDA tentatively concludes that this proposed rule contains no collection of information. Therefore, clearance by the Office of Management and Budget under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 is not required.

    IX. Request for Comments A. General Information About Submitting 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.

    B. Public Availability of Comments

    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. As a matter of Agency practice, FDA generally does not post comments submitted by individuals in their individual capacity on http://www.regulations.gov. This is determined by information indicating that the submission is written by an individual, for example, the comment is identified with the category “Individual Consumer” under the field titled “Category (Required),” on the “Your Information” page on http://www.regulations.gov. For this proposed rule, however, FDA will not be following this general practice. Instead, FDA will post on http://www.regulations.gov comments to this docket that have been submitted by individuals in their individual capacity. If you wish to submit any information under a claim of confidentiality, please refer to 21 CFR 10.20.

    C. Information Identifying the Person Submitting the Comment

    Please note that your name, contact information, and other information identifying you will be posted on http://www.regulations.gov if you include that information in the body of your comments. For electronic comments submitted to http://www.regulations.gov, FDA will post the body of your comment on http://www.regulations.gov along with your state/province and country (if provided), the name of your representative (if any), and the category identifying you (e.g., individual, consumer, academic, industry). For written submissions submitted to the Division of Dockets Management, FDA will post the body of your comments on http://www.regulations.gov, but you can put your name and/or contact information on a separate cover sheet and not in the body of your comments.

    X. References

    The following references have been placed on display in the Division of Dockets Management (see ADDRESSES) and may be seen by interested persons between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, and are available electronically at http://www.regulations.gov. (FDA has verified the Web site address in this reference section, but FDA is not responsible for any subsequent changes to the Web site after this document publishes in the Federal Register.)

    1. U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis. National Income and ProductAccounts, Table 1.1.9 Implicit Price Deflators for Gross Domestic Product, December 23, 2014 (http://www.bea.gov/national/Index.htm#gdp). 2. Ellsberg, D. “Risk, Ambiguity, and the Savage Axioms.” The Quarterly Journal of Economics 75, no. 4: 643-669, November 1961. 3. Easley, D., and M. O'Hara. “Ambiguity and Nonparticipation: The Role of Regulation.” Review of Financial Studies 22, no. 5: 1817-1843, 2009. 4. Dimmock, S. G., R. Kouwenberg, O. S. Mitchell, et al. “Ambiguity Aversion and Household Portfolio Choice: Empirical Evidence.” NBER Working Paper Series, Working Paper 18743, January 2013. 5. Defendant's Memorandum of Points and Authorities In Support of Motion to Dismiss or Summary Judgment. Allergan Inc., v. United States of America, et. al., 1:09-cv-01879-JDB (D.D.C. Jan. 11, 2010). List of Subjects 21 CFR Part 201

    Drugs, Labeling, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    21 CFR Part 801

    Labeling, Medical devices, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    21 CFR Part 1100

    Combination products, Devices, Drugs, Smoking, Tobacco.

    Therefore, under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and under authority delegated to the Commissioner of Food and Drugs, it is proposed that 21 CFR chapter I be amended as follows:

    PART 201—LABELING 1. The authority citation for 21 CFR part 201 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    21 U.S.C. 321, 331, 351, 352, 353, 355, 358, 360, 360b, 360gg-360ss, 371, 374, 379e; 42 U.S.C. 216, 241, 262, 264.

    2. Revise § 201.128 to read as follows:
    § 201.128 Meaning of “intended uses”.

    The words intended uses or words of similar import in §§ 201.5, 201.115, 201.117, 201.119, 201.120, 201.122, and 1100.5 of this chapter refer to the objective intent of the persons legally responsible for the labeling of drugs. The intent is determined by such persons' expressions or may be shown by the circumstances surrounding the distribution of the article. This objective intent may, for example, be shown by labeling claims, advertising matter, or oral or written statements by such persons or their representatives. It may be shown, for example, by circumstances in which the article is, with the knowledge of such persons or their representatives, offered and used for a purpose for which it is neither labeled nor advertised. The intended uses of an article may change after it has been introduced into interstate commerce by its manufacturer. If, for example, a packer, distributor, or seller intends an article for different uses than those intended by the person from whom he received the drug, such packer, distributor, or seller is required to supply adequate labeling in accordance with the new intended uses.

    PART 801—LABELING 3. The authority citation for 21 CFR part 801 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    21 U.S.C. 321, 331, 351, 352, 360i, 360j, 371, 374.

    4. Revise § 801.4 to read as follows:
    § 801.4 Meaning of intended uses.

    The words intended uses or words of similar import in §§ 801.5, 801.119, 801.122, and 1100.5 of this chapter refer to the objective intent of the persons legally responsible for the labeling of devices. The intent is determined by such persons' expressions or may be shown by the circumstances surrounding the distribution of the article. This objective intent may, for example, be shown by labeling claims, advertising matter, or oral or written statements by such persons or their representatives. It may be shown, for example, by circumstances in which the article is, with the knowledge of such persons or their representatives, offered and used for a purpose for which it is neither labeled nor advertised. The intended uses of an article may change after it has been introduced into interstate commerce by its manufacturer. If, for example, a packer, distributor, or seller intends an article for different uses than those intended by the person from whom he received the device, such packer, distributor, or seller is required to supply adequate labeling in accordance with the new intended uses.

    PART 1100—TOBACCO PRODUCTS SUBJECT TO FDA AUTHORITY 5. The authority citation for 21 CFR part 1100 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    21 U.S.C. 387a(b), 387f(d); Secs. 901(b) and 906(d), Pub. L. 111-31; 21 CFR 16.1 and 1107.1; 21 CFR 1.1, 1.20, 14.55, 17.1, and 17.2. Section 1100.5 is issued under 21 U.S.C. 321, 353(g), and 371(a); 21 CFR 1.1.

    6. Part 1100, as proposed to be added on April 25, 2014 (79 FR 23142 at 23202), is amended by adding § 1100.5 to read as follows:
    § 1100.5 Exclusion from tobacco regulation.

    If a product made or derived from tobacco that is intended for human consumption is intended for use for any of the purposes described in paragraph (a) or (b) of this section, the product is not a tobacco product as defined in section 201(rr) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and will be subject to regulation as a drug, device, or combination product.

    (a) The product is intended for use in the diagnosis of disease or other conditions, or in the cure, mitigation, treatment or prevention of disease, including use in smoking cessation, the cure or treatment of nicotine addiction, relapse prevention, relief of nicotine withdrawal symptoms, or prevention or mitigation of disease;

    (b) The product is intended to affect the structure or any function of the body in any way that is different from effects related to nicotine that were commonly and legally claimed in the marketing of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products prior to March 21, 2000.

    Dated: September 16, 2015. Leslie Kux, Associate Commissioner for Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24313 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4164-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF LABOR Occupational Safety and Health Administration 29 CFR Part 1904 [Docket Number: OSHA-2015-0006] RIN 1218-AC84 Clarification of Employer's Continuing Obligation To Make and Maintain an Accurate Record of Each Recordable Injury and Illness; Extension of Comment Period AGENCY:

    Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Labor.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rule; extension of comment period.

    SUMMARY:

    The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is extending the deadline for submitting comments on the proposed rule: Clarification of Employer's Continuing Obligation To Make and Maintain an Accurate Record of Each Recordable Injury and Illness.

    DATES:

    The comment due date for the proposed rule published in the Federal Register on July 29, 2015 (80 FR 45116) is extended. Comments must be submitted (postmarked, sent, or received) by October 28, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit comments and additional material using any of the following methods:

    Electronically. You may submit comments and attachments electronically at http://www.regulations.gov, which is the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Follow the instructions on the Web site for making electronic submissions.

    Facsimile. If your submission, including attachments, does not exceed ten pages, you may fax it to the OSHA Docket Office at (202) 693-1648. OSHA does not require hard copies of documents transmitted by facsimile. However, if you have supplemental attachments that are not delivered by facsimile, you must submit those attachments, by the applicable deadline, to the OSHA Docket Office, Technical Data Center, OSHA, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Room N-2625, Washington, DC 20210. Any such attachment must clearly identify the sender's name, the date of submission, the title of the rulemaking (Clarification of Employer's Continuing Obligation to Make and Maintain an Accurate Record of Each Recordable Injury and Illness), and the docket number (OSHA-2015-0006) so that the docket Office can add the attachment(s) to the appropriate facsimile submission.

    Regular or express mail, hand delivery, or messenger (courier) service. You may submit comments to the OSHA Docket Office, Docket Number OSHA-2015-0006, Technical Data Center, OSHA, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Room N-2625, Washington, DC 20210; telephone: (202) 693-2350. (OSHA's TTY number is (877) 889-5627). Please contact the OSHA Docket Office for information about Department of Labor security procedures that could affect the delivery of materials by express mail, hand delivery, and messenger or courier service. Also note that security-related procedures may delay the Agency's receipt of comments submitted by regular mail. The Docket Office will accept deliveries by hand, express mail, or messenger and courier service during the Docket Office's normal business hours, 8:15 a.m. to 4:45 p.m.

    Instructions for submitting comments: All submissions must include the Agency's name (OSHA), the title of the rulemaking (Clarification of Employer's Continuing Obligation to Make and Maintain an Accurate Record of Each Recordable Injury and Illness), and the docket number (OSHA-2015-0006). OSHA will place comments and other material, including any personal information you provide, in the public docket without revision, and the comments and other materials will be available online at http://www.regulations.gov. Therefore, OSHA cautions you about submitting statements and information that you do not want made available to the public or that contain personal information (about yourself or others) such as Social Security numbers, birthdates, and medical data. For additional information on the rulemaking process, see the Background heading in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION part of this document.

    Docket: To read or download comments or other material in the docket, go to Docket Number OSHA-20015-0006 at http://www.regulations.gov or to the OSHA Docket Office at the address provided previously. The electronic docket for this proposed rule, established at http://www.regulations.gov, lists all of the documents in the docket. However, some information (e.g., copyrighted material) is not publicly available to read or download through that Web site. All submissions, including copyrighted material, are available for inspection at the OSHA Docket Office. Contact the OSHA Docket Office for assistance in locating docket submissions.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    General information and press inquiries: Contact Frank Meilinger, Director, 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] Technical inquiries: Contact William Perry, Directorate of Standards and Guidance, OSHA, U.S. Department of Labor, Room N-3718, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone (202) 693-1950; email [email protected]

    Copies of this Federal Register notice and news releases: Electronic copies of these documents are available at OSHA's Web page at http://www.osha.gov.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background

    OSHA published a notice of proposed rulemaking on July 15, 2015, titled “Clarification of Employer's Continuing Obligation To Make and Maintain an Accurate Record of Each Recordable Injury and Illness.” The notice stated that comments were due by September 28, 2015. The National Association of Home Builders requested that the deadline for submitting comments be extended by 60 days to provide additional time for interested parties to engage in “legal analysis, as well as careful review and discussion” of the proposed rule. See Ex. OSHA-2015-006-0004. OSHA believes an extension of 30 days is reasonable. Therefore, to allow commenters adequate time to prepare complete and accurate comments on the proposed rule, OSHA is, with this notice, extending the deadline for submitting comments in response to the proposed rule to October 28, 2015.

    II. Authority and Signature

    David Michaels, Ph.D., MPH, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210, authorized the preparation of this notice pursuant to 29 U.S.C. 657, 673; 5 U.S.C. 553; and Secretary of Labor's Order No. 1-2012 (77 FR 3912; January 25, 2012), and 29 CFR 1911.

    Signed at Washington, DC, on September 21, 2015. David Michaels, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24319 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4510-26-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R09-OAR-2015-0369; FRL 9933-33-21-Region 9] Revisions to the California State Implementation Plan, Monterey Bay Unified Air Pollution Control District, Ventura County Air Pollution Control District AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to approve revisions to the Monterey Bay Unified Air Pollution Control District (MBUAPCD) and the Ventura County Air Pollution Control District (VCAPCD) portions of the California State Implementation Plan (SIP). These revisions concern volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions from the transfer of gasoline into vehicle fuel tanks, and from the transfer or dispensing of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). We are proposing to approve local rules to regulate these emission sources under the Clean Air Act (CAA or the Act).

    DATE:

    Any comments on this proposal must arrive by October 26, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit comments, identified by docket number EPA-R09-OAR-2015-0369, by one of the following methods:

    1. Federal eRulemaking Portal: www.regulations.gov. Follow the on-line instructions.

    2. Email: [email protected]

    3. Mail or deliver: Andrew Steckel (Air-4), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region IX, 75 Hawthorne Street, San Francisco, CA 94105-3901.

    Instructions: All comments will be included in the public docket without change and may be made available online at www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided, unless the comment includes Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Information that you consider CBI or otherwise protected should be clearly identified as such and should not be submitted through www.regulations.gov or email. www.regulations.gov is an “anonymous access” system, and EPA will not know your identity or contact information unless you provide it in the body of your comment. If you send email directly to EPA, your email address will be automatically captured and included as part of the public comment. If EPA cannot read your comment due to technical difficulties and cannot contact you for clarification, EPA may not be able to consider your comment. Electronic files should avoid the use of special characters, any form of encryption, and be free of any defects or viruses.

    Docket: Generally, documents in the docket for this action are available electronically at www.regulations.gov and in hard copy at EPA Region IX, 75 Hawthorne Street, San Francisco, California 94105-3901. While all documents in the docket are listed at www.regulations.gov, some information may be publicly available only at the hard copy location (e.g., copyrighted material, large maps), and some may not be publicly available in either location (e.g., CBI). To inspect the hard copy materials, please schedule an appointment during normal business hours with the contact listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    James Shears, EPA Region IX, (213) 244-1810, [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This proposal addresses the following local rule(s): MBUAPCD Rule 1002 and VCAPCD Rule 74.33. In the Rules and Regulations section of this Federal Register, we are approving these local rules in a direct final action without prior proposal because we believe these SIP revisions are not controversial. If we receive adverse comments, however, we will publish a timely withdrawal of the direct final rule and address the comments in subsequent action based on this proposed rule. Please note that if we receive adverse comment on an amendment, paragraph, or section of this rule and if that provision may be severed from the remainder of the rule, we may adopt as final those provisions of the rule that are not the subject of an adverse comment.

    We do not plan to open a second comment period, so anyone interested in commenting should do so at this time. If we do not receive adverse comments, no further activity is planned. For further information, please see the direct final action.

    Dated: August 11, 2015. Jared Blumenfeld, Regional Administrator, Region IX.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24104 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 62 [EPA-R07-OAR-2015-0427; FRL-9934-67-Region 7] Approval and Promulgation of State Plans for Designated Facilities and Pollutants; Missouri; Control of Mercury Emissions From Electric Generating Units AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to approve a revision to the Missouri State Plan received May 7, 2013. This revision rescinds the state rule and associated state plan controlling mercury emissions from electric generating units. This rule is being proposed for rescision because the Federal Clean Air Mercury Rule, which is the basis for this rule and associated plan, has been vacated and removed from the Code of Federal Regulations. This action will make Missouri's State Plan consistent with Federal regulations.

    DATES:

    Comments on this proposed action must be received in writing by October 26, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R07-OAR-2015-0427, by mail to Amy Bhesania, Environmental Protection Agency, Air Planning and Development Branch, 11201 Renner Boulevard, Lenexa, Kansas 66219. Comments may also be submitted electronically or through hand delivery/courier by following the detailed instructions in the ADDRESSES section of the direct final rule located in the rules section of this Federal Register.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Amy Bhesania, Environmental Protection Agency, Air Planning and Development Branch, 11201 Renner Boulevard, Lenexa, Kansas 66219 at 913-551-7147, or by email at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    In the final rules section of this Federal Register, EPA is approving the state's SIP revision as a direct final rule without prior proposal because the Agency views this as a noncontroversial revision amendment and anticipates no relevant adverse comments to this action. A detailed rationale for the approval is set forth in the direct final rule. If no relevant adverse comments are received in response to this action, no further activity is contemplated in relation to this action. If EPA receives relevant adverse comments, the direct final rule will be withdrawn and all public comments received will be addressed in a subsequent final rule based on this proposed action. EPA will not institute a second comment period on this action. Any parties interested in commenting on this action should do so at this time. Please note that if EPA receives adverse comment on part of this rule and if that part can be severed from the remainder of the rule, EPA may adopt as final those parts of the rule that are not the subject of an adverse comment. For additional information, see the direct final rule which is located in the rules section of this Federal Register.

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 62

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Administrative practice and procedure, Intergovernmental relations, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    Dated: September 14, 2015. Mark Hague, Acting Regional Administrator, Region 7.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24336 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Federal Emergency Management Agency 44 CFR Part 67 [Docket ID FEMA-2015-0001; Internal Agency Docket No. FEMA-B-1147] Proposed Flood Elevation Determinations for Butler County, Pennsylvania (All Jurisdictions) AGENCY:

    Federal Emergency Management Agency, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule; withdrawal.

    SUMMARY:

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is withdrawing its proposed rule concerning proposed flood elevation determinations for Butler County, Pennsylvania (All Jurisdictions).

    DATES:

    This withdrawal is effective on September 25, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, identified by Docket No. FEMA-B-1147, to Luis Rodriguez, Chief, Engineering Management Branch, Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration, Federal Emergency Management Agency, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472, (202) 646-4064, or (email) [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Luis Rodriguez, Chief, Engineering Management Branch, Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration, Federal Emergency Management Agency, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472, (202) 646-4064, or (email) [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On October 5, 2010, FEMA published a proposed rule at 75 FR 61382, proposing flood elevation determinations along one or more flooding sources in Butler County, Pennsylvania (All Jurisdictions). FEMA is withdrawing the proposed rule.

    Authority:

    42 U.S.C. 4104; 44 CFR 67.4.

    Dated: September 10, 2015. Roy E. Wright, Deputy Associate Administrator for Insurance and Mitigation, Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24418 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-12-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Federal Emergency Management Agency 44 CFR Part 67 [Docket ID FEMA-2015-0001; Internal Agency Docket No. FEMA-B-1153] Proposed Flood Elevation Determinations for Mercer County, New Jersey (All Jurisdictions) AGENCY:

    Federal Emergency Management Agency, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule; withdrawal.

    SUMMARY:

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is withdrawing its proposed rule concerning proposed flood elevation determinations for Mercer County, New Jersey (All Jurisdictions).

    DATES:

    This withdrawal is effective on September 25, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, identified by Docket No. FEMA-B-1153 to Luis Rodriguez, Chief, Engineering Management Branch, Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration, Federal Emergency Management Agency, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472, (202) 646-4064, or (email) [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Luis Rodriguez, Chief, Engineering Management Branch, Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration, Federal Emergency Management Agency, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472, (202) 646-4064, or (email) [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On November 9, 2010, FEMA published a proposed rule at 75 FR 68740-68741, proposing flood elevation determinations along one or more flooding sources in Mercer County, New Jersey. FEMA is withdrawing the proposed rule because FEMA has issued a Revised Preliminary Flood Insurance Rate Map and Flood Insurance Study report, featuring updated flood hazard information. A Notice of Proposed Flood Hazard Determinations was published in the Federal Register on August 1, 2014 at 79 FR 44848 and in the local newspaper of each affected community following issuance of the Revised Preliminary Flood Insurance Rate Map.

    Authority:

    42 U.S.C. 4104; 44 CFR 67.4.

    Dated: September 9, 2015. Roy E. Wright, Deputy Associate Administrator for Insurance and Mitigation, Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24421 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-12-P
    FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION 47 CFR Parts 51 and 63 [GN Docket No. 13-5, RM-11358; WC Docket No. 05-25, RM-10593; FCC 15-97] Technology Transitions, Policies and Rules Governing Retirement of Copper Loops by Incumbent Local Exchange Carriers and Special Access for Price Cap Local Exchange Carriers AGENCY:

    Federal Communications Commission.

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    In this document, the Commission takes further action on a rulemaking it initiated in January 6, 2015, to help guide and accelerate the technological revolutions that are underway involving the transitions from networks based on TDM circuit-switched voice services running on copper loops to all-IP multi-media networks using copper, co-axial cable, wireless, and fiber as physical infrastructure. This Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (FNPRM) is only one of a series of Commission actions to protect core values and ensure the success of these technology transitions. In this FNPRM, we take steps to ensure that competition continues to thrive and to protect consumers during transitions. These steps will help to ensure that the technology transitions continue to succeed.

    DATES:

    Submit comments on or before October 26, 2015. Submit reply comments on or before November 24, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, identified by GN Docket No. 13-5, RM-11358, WC Docket No. 05-25, RM-10593, by any of the following methods:

    • Federal Communications Commission's Web site: http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/ecfs2/. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

    • People with Disabilities: Contact the FCC to request reasonable accommodations (accessible format documents, sign language interpreters, CART, etc.) by email: [email protected] or phone: 202-418-0530 or TTY: 202-418-0432.

    For detailed instructions for submitting comments and additional information on the rulemaking process, see the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Michele Levy Berlove, Wireline Competition Bureau, Competition Policy Division, (202) 418-1477, or send an email to [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This is a summary of the Commission's Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (FNPRM) in GN Docket No. 13-5, RM-11358, WC Docket No. 05-25, RM-10593, FCC 15-97, adopted August 6, 2015 and released August 7, 2015. The full text of this document is available for public inspection during regular business hours in the FCC Reference Information Center, Portals II, 445 12th Street SW., Room CY-A257, Washington, DC 20554. It is available on the Commission's Web site at http://www.fcc.gov.

    I. Introduction

    1. Communications networks are rapidly transitioning away from the historic provision of time-division multiplexed (TDM) services running on copper to new, all-Internet Protocol (IP) multimedia networks using copper, co-axial cable, wireless, and fiber as physical infrastructure. Our actions today further the technology transitions underway in our Nation's fixed communications networks that offer the prospect of innovative and improved services to consumers and businesses alike. The core goals of the January 2014 Technology Transitions Order frame our approach here. In the Technology Transitions Order, we emphasized the importance of speeding market-driven technological transitions and innovations while preserving the core statutory values as codified by Congress: competition, consumer protection, universal service, and public safety. Furthering these core values will accelerate customer adoption of technology transitions. Today, we take the next step in advancing longstanding competition and consumer protection policies on a technologically-neutral basis in order to ensure that the deployment of innovative and improved communications services can continue without delay.

    2. Industry is investing aggressively in modern telecommunications networks and services. Overall, according to data supplied by USTelecom and AT&T, capital expenditures by broadband providers topped $75 billion in 2013 and continue to increase. AT&T recently announced that by the year 2020, 75 percent of its network will be controlled by software. To do this, AT&T is undergoing a massive effort to train about 130,000 of its employees on software-defined networking architecture and protocols. AT&T has also expanded its wireline IP broadband network to 57 million customer locations, as well as extended fiber to 725,000 business locations. Moreover, Verizon passes more than 19.8 million premises with its all-fiber network—the largest such network in the country—and it projects that soon about 70 percent of the premises in its landline territory will have access to all-fiber facilities. Verizon too has announced an SDN-based strategy “to introduce new operational efficiencies and allow for the enablement of rapid and flexible service delivery to Verizon's customers.” And CenturyLink has announced the launch of 1 Gbps broadband service to 16 cities. According to recent reports, CenturyLink's national fiber network upgrade has expanded availability of CenturyLink's gigabit broadband services to nearly 490,000 business locations. These are just a few of many examples in which industry is investing heavily to bring the benefits of new networks and services to customers of all sizes.

    3. We recognize that the success of the technology transitions is dependent, among other things, on clear and certain direction from the Commission that preserves the historic values that Congress has incorporated in the Communications Act of 1934, as amended (the Act). In the January 6, 2015 NPRM, 80 FR 450, we sought comment on limited oversight that would encourage transitions that could otherwise be delayed if a portion of consumers were left behind or competition were allowed to diminish—recognizing that the transitions that are underway are organic processes without a single starting or stopping point. Building on that NPRM, in this item we support the transitions by adopting limited and targeted regulation to preserve competition and to protect consumers, especially those in vulnerable populations who have not yet voluntarily migrated from plain old telephone service (POTS) and other legacy services. In taking these steps, we seek to avoid the need for future regulation and dispute resolution that could cause delays down the road. Carriers involved in the historic transitions have made clear their intention to protect consumers and preserve a competitive marketplace going forward, and the pro-transition rules we adopt today are consistent with those mutually shared goals.

    4. Establishing Clear Standards to Streamline Transitions to an All-IP Environment. Having established that section 214's discontinuance provisions apply to a service based on a totality-of-the-circumstances functional evaluation, we believe it is prudent to provide additional guidance so that consumers and providers are clear on the meaning of the section 214 standard. Building on the record developed in response to the -NPRM, in this FNPRM we propose specific criteria for the Commission to use in evaluating applications to discontinue retail services pursuant to section 214 of the Act. We believe all stakeholders will benefit from an additional round of focused comment on our specific proposals. As we stated previously, adopting specific criteria will enable the Commission to ensure that we can carry out our statutorily-mandated responsibilities in a technology-neutral manner and provide clear up-front guidance that will minimize complications when carriers seek approval for large-scale discontinuances. With clear standards in place, carriers will not have to guess as to how they can obtain approval to discontinue TDM services once they are ready to do so.

    II. Further Notice Of Proposed Rulemaking A. Establishing Clear Standards To Streamline Transitions to an All-IP Environment

    5. We seek comment on specific proposals for possible criteria against which to measure “what would constitute an adequate substitute for retail services that a carrier seeks to discontinue, reduce, or impair in connection with a technology transition (e.g., TDM to IP, wireline to wireless).” We sought comment on this topic in the Notice, asking wide-ranging questions, and believe that the specific proposals that we raise here will facilitate development of a sufficient record to allow us to fully establish highly effective, clear, and technology-neutral criteria. The Commission remains dedicated to providing carriers the guidance and clarity they need to implement new technologies at scale as quickly as possible. We will benefit from more targeted input in order to adopt rules that are carefully tailored to address the issues presented by the ongoing technology transitions process and that will stand the test of time.

    6. Our purpose is to adopt clear criteria that will eliminate uncertainty that could potentially impede the industry from actuating a rapid and prompt transition to IP and wireless technology. We recognize that our existing case-by-case approach may not provide sufficient guidance as to what constitutes an adequate substitute with regard to cutting-edge technology transitions, and we recognize that as a result carriers may be more inclined to pursue half-measures that merely “test the water.” Such outcomes reduce innovation and are inconsistent with our overarching goal of advancing the public interest and ensuring “that we protect consumers, competition, and public safety.”

    7. The Commission always has applied certain criteria in evaluating the adequacy of alternative services in the context of section 214 discontinuance applications. The Commission has engaged in a highly fact-specific analysis based on the situation presented and has not codified any specific criteria by which it evaluates the adequacy of substitute services. The record we received in response to questions in the NPRM about adequate substitutes included a range of public interest organizations, state utility commissions, competitive LECs, telecommunications service consumers, and others advocating that we should define attributes of an adequate substitute, and other commenters, particularly larger incumbent LECs, urging us not to do so. Incumbent LECs believe that defining the attributes of an adequate substitute service would discourage carriers from innovating. A number of these commenters argue that the Commission should encourage the development of industry best practices.

    8. Commenters have not swayed us from our belief that establishing criteria for evaluating the adequacy of replacement services will benefit industry and consumers alike by providing certainty. Indeed, we believe that by establishing and codifying such criteria, we provide transparency and certainty in an area that has been subject to case-by-case evaluation without formal rule-based guidance. We believe that it is important to ensure that key aspects of service such as connection persistence and quality, 9-1-1 service, and service for individuals with disabilities remain available. We agree with Public Knowledge that establishing clear principles that ensure the availability of key functions post-transition will likely increase public acceptance of alternative technologies, thus decreasing resistance to services based on next-generation technologies.

    9. We agree with incumbent LECs that the Commission must evaluate the availability of alternative services from sources other than the carrier seeking section 214 discontinuance authority. Moreover, there seems to be a misplaced belief that the Commission will automatically categorize any change in underlying technology or facility as a discontinuance, reduction, or impairment of service for which a carrier must seek Commission authorization under section 214. It is important to note that the Commission must evaluate the adequacy of those alternative services using the same criteria as those applied to any replacement service offered by the discontinuing carrier. We also reiterate that the availability of adequate substitute services is just one of five factors the Commission looks at in evaluating section 214 discontinuance applications under existing precedent, to be balanced against the other factors in determining whether the public convenience and necessity will be adversely affected by discontinuance of the service at issue. In evaluating an application for discontinuance authority under section 214(a), the Commission considers five factors that are intended to balance the interests of the carrier seeking discontinuance authority and the affected user community: (1) The financial impact on the common carrier of continuing to provide the service; (2) the need for the service in general; (3) the need for the particular facilities in question; (4) the existence, availability, and adequacy of alternatives; and (5) increased charges for alternative services, although this factor may be outweighed by other considerations. The reasonably comparable wholesale access interim rule that we adopt in the Order applies as a condition on certain grants of discontinuance authority, and as such it applies separately from and subsequent to this balancing test. We therefore believe that adoption of criteria by which to measure the adequacy of available substitute services, which we will look to as part of a larger evaluation of the circumstances surrounding a proposed discontinuance, will not serve to discourage carriers from seeking to innovate and develop new communications technologies.

    1. Proposed Criteria

    10. Consistent with the NPRM, we tentatively conclude that several of the criteria proposed by Public Knowledge, listed below, are the appropriate criteria for the Commission to consider in determining whether to authorize carriers to discontinue a legacy retail service in favor of a retail service based on a newer technology. These proposed criteria align the Commission's dual incentives of: (1) Meeting the statutory obligations to protect consumers, competition, and the public safety; and (2) resolving discontinuance applications as briskly as possible. As Public Knowledge et al. have noted, “[w]hen a new technology can be trusted to offer the same or better service than what customers had before (at the same or better price), customers will have no reason to object to the transition.” We find that having clear, established criteria is consistent with the Commission's obligations and also gives applicants the information they need to ultimately be more responsive to the Commission's concerns regarding adequate substitutes.

    11. Specifically, we propose that a carrier seeking to discontinue an existing retail service in favor of a retail service based on a newer technology must demonstrate that any substitute service offered by the carrier or alternative services available from other providers in the affected service area meet the following criteria in order for the section 214 application to be eligible for an automatic grant pursuant to Section 63.71(d) of the Commission's rules: (1) Network capacity and reliability; (2) service quality; (3) device and service interoperability, including interoperability with vital third-party services (through existing or new devices); (4) service for individuals with disabilities, including compatibility with assistive technologies; (5) PSAP and 9-1-1 service; (6) cybersecurity; (7) service functionality; and (8) coverage. Certain commenters support the ten attributes proposed by Public Knowledge. One of those supporters suggests reworking and combining those criteria to focus on retail services, consistent with the Commission's stated emphasis in the NPRM, as follows: “(1) Reliable and accurate access to E911; (2) constant availability, including during storms and emergencies; (3) adequate call quality; (4) compatibility with health and safety services that use the network; (5) adequate data transmission capability; and (6) affordable to consumers.” We seek detailed comment on these and other possible criteria below. Although much of the discussion on the proposed criteria focuses on residential end users, we also recognize that the perspective of commercial stakeholders, including enterprise end users, is vitally important. We therefore seek comment from these stakeholders regarding how and to what extent the proposed criteria inform their decision-making process. Are their service concerns identical to those of residential consumers? If not, should different or additional service metrics be considered for their purposes?

    12. As an initial matter, we seek comment on when any criteria that we adopt should apply. Should their application be dependent on the nature of the existing service and the newer service to which the carrier is transitioning? What should qualify as a “service based on a newer technology”? Rather than framing the draft rule in terms of discontinuance of an “existing” service in favor of a “service based on a newer technology,” should we instead frame it in terms of discontinuance of “legacy service,” and if so how should the term “legacy service” be defined? Should the criteria apply where the replacement service offered by the requesting carrier or the alternative services available from other providers in the relevant service area are IP-based or wireless? Should they apply where the replacement or alternative service is based on next-generation technologies? If so, how should we define next-generation technologies? For purposes of this FNPRM, we will simply refer to the relevant situations in which a carrier seeks to discontinue an existing retail service in favor of a next-generation service as “technology transitions,” but we do not intend to suggest that we have reached a conclusion on when any criteria that we have adopted will apply.

    13. We further tentatively conclude that if a carrier certifies in its application that it satisfies all of these criteria, then the application will be eligible for automatic grant pursuant to section 63.71(d) of the Commission's rules as long as other already-adopted applicable requirements for automatic grant are satisfied. However, if the carrier discontinuing a service during a technology transition is unable to file such a certification, or if comments or objections call into question whether a substitute or alternative service satisfies all of the criteria we adopt, then we would not automatically grant the application. Instead, the carrier would be required to submit information demonstrating the degree to which it meets or does not meet each factor, and we would weigh this information in our evaluation of whether a replacement service offered by the applicant or an alternative service offered by another provider in the relevant service area qualifies as an adequate substitute for the existing service for which the carrier seeks discontinuance authorization. We propose that for applications not subject to automatic grant, the adequate substitute evaluation would retain its traditional role as a part of our multi-factor determination of whether to grant a discontinuance application. In other words, outside of the automatic grant context, we propose that we not alter the role that the existence, availability, and adequacy of alternatives plays in our analysis; rather, we propose to channel that analysis through the criteria that we will articulate. We seek comment on this proposed approach. We recognize that with respect to the question of whether automatic grant is available, this proposal affords the adequate substitute factor a new primacy in the section 214 analysis. However, we anticipate that this approach is necessary to ensure consumer protection as technologies transition by providing the Commission sufficient time to evaluate applications that may not provide a completely adequate substitute. Further, this approach permits industry to pursue transitions flexibly because it does not mandate that all criteria must be met and continues to evaluate the adequacy of substitutes as merely one factor in the overall discontinuance analysis.

    14. To the extent commenters believe a different approach is preferable, they should describe with specificity the alternative and address how it would adequately protect consumers while providing sufficient industry flexibility. To the extent commenters argue that not all of the criteria should be considered mandatory in order for an application to qualify for automatic granting, they should identify which factors would not be mandatory. If we remove an application from automatic grant, we propose weighing compliance with the criteria as a part of our overall multi-factor analysis of whether to approve a discontinuance application, and we seek comment on this proposal. Should we require that one replacement or alternative service satisfy every criterion we adopt in order to qualify for automatic grant, or is it sufficient that multiple alternative services are available which collectively satisfy all of the adopted criteria? We also seek comment on the costs and benefits of adopting a rule consistent with our tentative conclusion and on any other proposals suggested in the record. We seek comment on whether requiring this multi-factored showing from the carrier will promote or deter innovation or competition.

    15. Where a carrier is seeking to establish the adequacy of alternative retail services in the context of a section 214 discontinuance application by certifying its compliance will all of the criteria such that its application may be eligible for automatic grant, we further tentatively conclude that the certification should be executed by an officer or other authorized representative of the company and be accompanied by a detailed statement explaining the basis for such certification. The certification would be subject to the requirements of section 1.16 of the Commission's rules and be subscribed to as true under penalty of perjury in substantially the form set forth in the rule. We seek comment on whether such an approach would be consistent with the objectives of the revised service discontinuance process, particularly in evaluating the adequacy of alternative services in the context of Section 214 discontinuance applications.

    16. We tentatively conclude that in each case in which a carrier must demonstrate the existence of an adequate substitute service, the qualifying service can be a service the carrier offers, or can be an existing service offered by third parties. Under our proposal, references in this sub-section to “demonstrating” or otherwise showing that a criterion is met encompass demonstration via certification where the carrier is able to seek eligibility for automatic grant or, otherwise, demonstration via the submission of evidence and information. We also tentatively conclude that a showing as to a first-party or a third-party service will be treated equally, i.e., the criteria would not apply more stringently in one case than the other. We seek comment on these tentative conclusions and on possible alternatives. Would another approach be consistent with our precedent? Should a carrier be permitted to rely on one substitute service as to some factors and a different substitute service as to other factors, or should it be required to show that there is one service that is a fully adequate substitute for the discontinued service?

    17. We would prefer to adopt bright-line objective criteria that can be applied on a national basis instead of requiring localized testing of the service to be discontinued and/or the substitute service. We recognize that the criteria that we propose may not fully achieve this goal because of the lack of specific recommendations regarding objective metrics in the record. We further recognize that a localized testing-based approach may be incompatible with our proposal to allow parties to file a simple certification at the time of the application to allow potential automatic grant. We urge all interested parties to provide bright-line objective criteria to the maximum extent possible. For instance, what metrics or standards are incorporated into large commercial or governmental contracts regarding quality of service? However, we caution that we intend to adopt criteria and will adopt a localized testing-based regime if we deem it necessary in the absence of a workable national framework. We seek comment on the relative benefits of objective bright-line criteria and a localized testing approach in this context. If we do adopt a localized testing-based approach, how long a period of testing should we require for the discontinued and/or substitute service?

    18. We also seek to further develop the record on whether the application of these criteria should be dependent on the nature of the legacy service and the newer service to which the carrier is transitioning, and specifically on what should qualify as a “newer” service. Should the criteria apply where the replacement service offered by the requesting carrier or the alternative services available from other providers in the relevant service area involve fixed, mobile wireless, or fixed wireless technologies that provide VoIP or other IP-based services? Should they apply where the replacement or alternative service is based on next-generation services?

    19. Network Capacity and Reliability. Networks must have sufficient capacity to meet end user needs. Moreover, reliability has long been a hallmark of this country's communications network. During peak traffic periods, capacity is necessary to ensure reliability; without reliability, capacity is of limited use. Consistent with common usage, we use the term “reliability” to describe how often a service is available for the consumer. However, we recognize that technically what we are discussing is “availability” of a service, which is defined by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) as follows: “Availability of an item to be in a state to perform a required function at a given instant of time or at any instant of time within a given time interval, assuming that the external resources, if required, are provided.” Public Knowledge proposed that we evaluate availability separately from reliability, but because much of its proposal focused on service during power outages (which is being addressed by the Commission through separate means and because the reliability test that we propose based on its submission also addresses “availability” within its technical meaning, we do not propose a separate availability factor. Within a given time interval, assuming that the external resources, if required, are provided.” We therefore tentatively conclude that any adequate substitute test that we adopt should evaluate whether the replacement or alternative service

    will (a) afford the same or greater capacity as the existing service and (b) afford the same reliability as the existing service even when large numbers of communications, including but not limited to calls or other end-user initiated uses, take place simultaneously, and when large numbers of connections are initiated in or terminated at a communications hub, including but not limited to a wire center. This means that: (1) Communications are routed to the correct location (2) Connections are completed (3) Connection quality does not deteriorate under stress (4) Connection setup does not exhibit noticeable latency.

    20. We seek comment on this tentative conclusion. Should network capacity and reliability be a part of our adequate substitute evaluation? For purposes of implementing the Connect America Fund Phase II model-based support to price cap carriers, the Wireline Competition Bureau adopted a 100 millisecond latency metric to judge whether a service offering meets the Commission's requirement that service enable the use of real time applications. The Wireline Competition Bureau selected the 100 millisecond standard based on the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) standards. We seek comment on whether to adopt that same metric to judge whether “noticeable latency” occurs here and seek comment on that proposal. In addition, we propose to adopt metrics for jitter, packet loss, and through-put to provide a more complete and robust performance measurement of the service being offered to evaluate successful routing, completion of connections, and quality deterioration and ask commenters to address what specific thresholds should be adopted. The term “jitter” is used herein to refer to encompass IPDV (IP Packet Delay Variation) or PDV (Packet Delay Variation) as those terms are defined by ITU and Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) documents. The term “packet loss” used herein to encompass IPLR (IP packet Loss Ratio) as that term is defined by ITU and IETF documents. We also propose that the required metrics be based on the defined standards for various classes of service in ITU-T Y.1541, adjusted for the portion of the network that is the responsibility of the provider. We do not propose to include separate network capacity indicators as part of the adequate substitute test because measuring latency, jitter, packet loss, and speed through-put performance testing during network peak periods can demonstrate whether there is sufficient network capacity and quality. We ask how reliability (availability) can be measured by “reachability” tests conducted on a continuous basis. Such measures could include ping or other User Datagram Protocol (UDP)-based tests, such as the FCC Measuring Broadband America program. Other methodologies could also be employed, such as requiring an upper limit over-subscription ratio at defined points in the network, dual homing to at least two different upstream providers, multiple links to a single upstream provider, and a utilization limit above which additional ports and links would be required. We seek comment on this proposed approach and possible alternatives. CWA suggests that in the context of voice communications, “the ability to access a dial tone within three seconds 98% of the time during the busy season—busy hour should be the minimally acceptable level of service for a network,” basing this suggestion on “the same, or substantially similar” standards maintained by 18 state public utility commissions. We seek comment on whether we should adopt this standard as a part of our evaluation and on whether and how it can apply to non-dial tone services. Should we evaluate availability separately from reliability, and if so how should we evaluate each?

    21. Service Quality. As one commenter noted, “[c]onsumers expect their voice communications to be clear, understandable, and free of distortion.” We believe that this is a reasonable expectation that should not fall by the wayside when a carrier transitions its facilities from the traditional public switched telephone network to use of different technologies, and we do not believe that it should be limited to the quality of voice calls. We therefore tentatively conclude that one criterion in any adequate substitute test that we adopt should be that the carrier demonstrates in its section 214 application that any replacement or alternative service meets the minimum service quality standards set by the state commission responsible for the relevant service area. We seek comment on this proposal. If the relevant state commission has not established such standards or lacks authority to do so, then we seek comment on what standards we should apply. In the Connect America Fund docket, parties have urged the Commission to adopt alternative measures of service quality for recipients of Connect America Fund support, such as requiring voice service to be provided with an “R Factor” score at or above a minimum threshold value. We note, however, that the R score is a network planning tool and is not designed to measure actual service quality. R scores “are only made for transmission planning purposes and not for actual customer opinion prediction (for which there is no agreed-upon model recommended by the ITU-T).” For data services, should internal network management system (NMS) tools be used to measure speed performance? Are external systems preferable, such as the Measuring Broadband America-based hardware approach? The Measuring Broadband America program is an ongoing nationwide study by the FCC of U.S. consumer broadband performance. The program's hardware approach involves connecting a measuring device to a broadband user's work station and periodically running speed tests to remote targets on the Internet. Are there additional performance metrics that should be considered? We also seek comment on TelePacific's suggestion that “[a]dditional metrics could include repeat trouble/repair reports, a key metric to determine whether incumbent LECs are fixing their plant, or compliance with [certain] Telcordia Standards . . .” As an alternative to the approach we propose, can “network capacity and reliability” and “service quality” be measured by the same performance metrics (e.g., delay, jitter, packet loss, through-put, and availability) such that adopting them as distinct criteria is neither necessary nor desirable?

    22. Device and Service Interoperability. We tentatively conclude that one criterion in any adequate substitute test that we adopt should be that the carrier demonstrates that its replacement service or the alternative services available from other providers in the relevant service area allow for as much or more interoperability of both voice and non-voice devices, or newer technology-based equivalent devices, as the service to be retired. We seek comment on this tentative conclusion, as well as possible alternatives. To the extent commenters oppose adoption of such a requirement, they should identify with specificity their reasons and explain how we still can ensure that consumers are not harmed by the proposed discontinuance.

    23. Certain commenters profess to be confused about what functionalities consumers consider to be essential components of their legacy service. However, the record is already replete with examples of such devices and services. Indeed, AT&T acknowledged in its Proposal for Wire Center Trials that a variety of such third-party devices and services are “vitally important to its customers.” And consumer response to Verizon's attempts to use its VoiceLink service as a replacement service for its damaged wireline service in the wake of Super Storm Sandy can leave no doubt regarding what consumers believe to be essential service features. Moreover, the CTC Report contains a discussion regarding the use of various technology standards to allow for ongoing interoperability. According to CTC Technology and Energy (CTC): “Despite this diversity, the majority of non-voice devices conform to a standard modem technology, such as v.32, v. 34, v.42bis, v.44, v.90, and v.92. Even where a truly proprietary device is used, the signaling and communications and protocol is similar enough to a standard modem that a test of a range of standards should be close enough to determine whether many devices will work on an IP-transitioned line.” CTC also notes that while older dial-up modems and fax machines fail to transmit properly over VoIP devices, this problem can be mitigated: “Technology complying with the ITU T.38 standard can mitigate this issue by allowing the VoIP ATA [analog telephone adapter] to decode or `read the fax or modem signal, transmit the contents to the VoIP device at the far end as IP packets, and re-encode it for the fax or modem at the receiving location.”

    24. How should we measure the level of interoperability? Should we require that the service conform to standard modem technology and, if so, how should we define that phrase for purposes of this criteria? Should we require that any VoIP device used by the network comply with the ITU T.38 standard, as proposed by CTC, or to some other standard? To what extent should we consider consumer trends in evaluating what third-party devices or services a substitute or alternative service should be required to support? Are there other ways in which to ensure the interoperability of third-party devices and services? ADT proposes that we adopt a rule governing the adoption of Managed Facilities-Based Voice Network (MFVN) standards, which it asserts have been used to ensure the continued interoperability of alarm monitoring systems during and after the transition to IP networks. We seek comment on whether the MFVN standards should play a role in our evaluation of the interoperability criteria or, in the alternative, on what role if any it should play in our legal framework for technology transitions. Lastly, we tentatively conclude that functionalities “in development” for a replacement service at the time a carrier submits a section 214(a) discontinuance application will not be considered in evaluating the adequacy of the replacement service. We seek comment on this tentative conclusion.

    25. Service for Individuals with Disabilities. The importance of ensuring that consumers with disabilities can utilize assistive technologies over communications networks is indisputable. There are several possible areas of impact of the transition on people with disabilities, such as (1) degradation of voice service quality that may compromise the ability of users who are hard of hearing to engage in a telephone conversation, and (2) incompatibility of remote transmission technologies over IP-based networks used for the provision of captioning on television or Internet-based video programming. As we noted above, one purpose of adopting criteria for evaluating the adequacy of substitute services is to ensure consumer protection. We tentatively conclude that one criterion in any adequate substitute test that we adopt should be that the carrier demonstrates that its replacement service or the alternative services available from other providers allow at least the same accessibility, usability, and compatibility with assistive technologies as the service being discontinued. We seek comment on this tentative conclusion, as well as possible alternatives. To the extent that people with disabilities must transition to new equipment, we seek comment on what is needed to reduce the burden of obtaining such equipment, particularly for those who do not qualify for existing state and federal equipment distribution programs and for those who are replacing devices not covered by equipment distribution programs (such as individuals with medical devices that are incompatible with IP service). Should we require carriers seeking to discontinue existing services in such contexts to include in their Section 214 applications information regarding the availability of IP-enabled devices that can also be distributed to selected and qualifying recipients under applicable state and federal programs? One commenter noted its “understanding that technology transitions can be made to properly function with legacy assistive technology devices (e.g., TTY terminals) through appropriate network software modifications, and/or through the general availability of IP-enabled devices that can also be distributed to selected and qualifying recipients under applicable state and federal programs.” Is this correct?

    26. We note that as TDM networks are discontinued in favor of IP-based networks, there is an opportunity to implement IP-based real time text to replace TTY text services, as the key functionalities of both services are similar. We seek comment on whether we should require the implementation of real time text over IP networks and whether we should set an end date for the termination of TTY text services. We also seek comment on the appropriate length of a transition period during which both TTY text services and IP-based real time text would be available. We ask commenters to describe what IP-based real time text service would look like, including applicable standards, and to explain how it will be implemented. In response to the -NPRM, some commenters assert that accessibility is currently the subject of an industry-wide proceeding and thus should not be addressed “ad hoc” in this proceeding. We tentatively conclude, however, that we should adopt a standard regarding compatibility with assistive technologies for purposes of evaluating discontinuance applications. We seek comment on this tentative conclusion. We also seek comment on the appropriate timelines for issuing notices that existing services will be discontinued, and that new services may not be compatible with certain equipment. We further seek comment on the means of issuing such notices to ensure effective communication to the full community of people with disabilities.

    27. Although we acknowledge the possible impact that the transition to IP networks may have on people with disabilities, we also recognize an opportunity to implement high definition voice (HD voice) service over IP networks. HD voice would be especially beneficial for particular consumers who are hard of hearing to be able to better understand conversations over the telephone, thereby improving accessibility of the network to such consumers and potentially reducing their reliance on intermediary relay services such as captioned telephone service (CTS) and IP captioned telephone service (IP CTS) in favor of mainstream forms of communication. We therefore propose to require providers of IP networks to include HD voice as a feature for users with disabilities and seek comment on our proposal. We ask commenters to discuss timetables for the implementation of HD voice. Lastly, although speech recognition technologies that can accurately convert speech to text are still under development, we seek comment on the state of development of such technologies, which can also assist in the development of an all-inclusive network that will allow users to migrate away from the use of CTS and IP CTS in favor of mainstream forms of communication. In particular, we ask commenters to address the technical barriers to the development of accuracy for such technologies and the length of time that it is expected to take.

    28. PSAP and 9-1-1 Service. The ability of consumers to contact 9-1-1 and reach the appropriate Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) and for that PSAP to receive accurate location information for the caller is of the utmost importance. We therefore tentatively conclude that one criterion in any adequate substitute test that we adopt should be that the carrier demonstrates that a substitute service offered by the requesting carrier or alternative services available from other providers in the relevant service area complies with applicable state, Tribal, and federal regulations regarding the availability, reliability, and required functionality of 9-1-1 service. We seek comment on this tentative conclusion as well as any possible alternatives. Specifically, should we base our evaluation on whether substitute services merely comply with any 9-1-1 regulations applicable to such services, or whether they provide as good—or better—9-1-1 functionality as the service(s) they replace? For example, would a fixed wireless service that complies with wireless 9-1-1 automatic location information (ALI) requirements be an adequate substitute for a traditional landline service that provides ALI to PSAPs at the street-address level, or would such a substitution be inadequate? Would a VoIP service that will not function during a loss of commercial power, or that provides only a limited amount of battery backup for CPE, serve as an adequate substitute to reach 9-1-1 in an emergency? What other factors should we consider for residential services? Further, what considerations should be applied to discontinuance of 9-1-1 network services and components, such as trunks and selective routers, that support the capability of individual consumers to effectively reach 9-1-1? We observe that, without ensuring adequate service to PSAPs, residential 9-1-1 service could be negatively affected.

    29. Certain commenters expressed concern that questions regarding 9-1-1 service are being addressed in other proceedings and thus should not be addressed here. We note, however, that our 2014 Policy Statement and Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on 9-1-1 governance and accountability proposed only that “covered 911 service providers that seek to discontinue, reduce, or impair existing 911 service in a way that does not trigger already existing authorization requirements should be required to obtain Commission approval.” The Commission further stated that “[w]e do not . . . intend to create duplicative obligations for entities that are already subject to section 214(a) and associated authorization requirements” and that any new requirement for covered 9-1-1 service providers “would apply only when entities seeking to discontinue, reduce, or impair existing 911 service are not already required to obtain approval under other existing Commission rules.” Accordingly, we disagree that our proposal here to consider access to 9-1-1 as a criterion in our section 214 analysis would duplicate or conflict with additional measures proposed in other proceedings. Although the issues are related and reflect our overarching goal of ensuring that all Americans have reliable access to 9-1-1, we tentatively conclude that the issues raised here with respect to adequate substitution are separate from those under consideration in the 9-1-1 governance proceeding and should therefore proceed independently. We seek comment on this tentative conclusion.

    30. Communications Security. In the -NPRM, the Commission observed that IP technologies “can create the potential for network security risks through the exposure of network monitoring and control systems to end users.” We sought comment “on whether the Commission should require demonstration, as part of the section 214 discontinuance process, that any IP-supported networks or network components offer comparable communications security, integrity, and reliability.” Several commenters expressed support for our considering network security as part of this process. We now tentatively conclude that one criterion in any adequate substitute test that we adopt should be that the carrier demonstrates in its application that a substitute service offered by the requesting carrier or alternative services available from other providers in the relevant service area offer comparably effective protection from network security risks. We believe that this approach would adequately protect the interests of consumers, while preserving flexibility for providers to tailor security risk management practices to their unique needs and circumstances. We seek comment on this tentative conclusion, as well as possible alternatives. What factors should we consider in assessing whether a substitute service offers comparably effective protection from network security risks? How should we define the appropriate category of “network security risks” for this purpose? Should we consider factors such as those Public Knowledge identifies in its comments? For instance, should we consider the extent to which a proposed substitute service exposes users to a higher risk of spoofed calls or “man-in-the-middle” attacks (e.g., interception of fixed wireless calls using an “IMSI catcher”) that compromise a user's ability to communicate or put personal information at risk? An “IMSI catcher” is an eavesdropping device, essentially a fake mobile tower that intercepts cellphone calls and can be used to listen to the cellphone owner's calls, read their texts, and track their movements. Should we consider the vulnerability of a proposed substitute service to physical risks (e.g., weather damage) or human risks (e.g., insider threats)?

    31. Would it be sufficient for an applicant to demonstrate that the provider of the substitute service has engaged in implementation of the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) Cybersecurity Framework (NSF) or an equivalent risk management construct? Should an applicant also address the provider's participation in the Communications Sector Coordinating Council or other public-private initiatives to promote more secure communications networks? Should an applicant provide more detailed information regarding the provider's cyber risk management practices in general, its implementation of relevant industry best practices, or its engagement with fellow providers to address shared risks? To what extent may the Commission reasonably expect that applicants to discontinue service are in a position to provide information about the network security risks of an unaffiliated provider of a substitute service? Should the degree of detail required from an applicant depend on whether the provider of a proposed substitute service is affiliated with the applicant? What additional information, if any, would assist the Commission in evaluating the security protections afforded by a proposed substitute service?

    32. Service Functionality. Consumers have come to expect that they may use their phone service to make calls anywhere to anyone, regardless of the network used by the call recipient. This is not always the case with other types of voice service. They also have come to expect that their phone service provides certain functionalities, such as caller ID, transport of touch tones, and the ability to make calling card, dial-around, collect, or third-party number billed calls, as well as certain non-call functionalities. Enterprise customers also rely on the functionalities available from the services they purchase. We tentatively conclude that one criterion in any adequate substitute test that we adopt should be that the carrier must demonstrate in its Section 214 application that any replacement offered by the requesting carrier or alternative service available from other providers in the relevant service area permit similar service functionalities as the service for which the carrier seeks discontinuance authority. We seek comment on this tentative conclusion, as well as other possible alternatives. We seek comment as well on whether similar functionalities as those provided by legacy services, such as medical alert monitors and credit card processing, are feasible with new technologies and whether new end-user equipment would be required.

    33. How should “service functionality” be defined? We recognize that we need additional information on this issue. How can we ensure that it will be a technology neutral evaluation? Should we require that if, for instance, a voice service with caller ID is discontinued, a replacement service or alternative service offered by another provider in the relevant service area must include the option of caller ID? Or if facsimile machines can be used over the existing service, a replacement or other alternative service must afford similar interoperability? Or if a data service is to be discontinued, such capability, or something that performs the same function, must be otherwise available? How do we measure the scope of “service functionality”? How can carriers gather the information needed regarding functionalities consumers consider to be essential components of their service? How can they gather “service availability” information with respect to alternative services offered by other providers in the relevant service area? And how does this proposed criterion correlate to our statement in the Declaratory Ruling that the relevant task in defining the scope of a carrier's service “is to identify the service the carrier actually provides to end users” and that “[i]n doing so, the Commission takes a functional approach that evaluates the totality of the circumstances”?

    34. Coverage. Inherent in our longstanding evaluation of the existence, availability, and adequacy of alternative services is the question of whether the substitute service is available to the persons to whom the discontinued service has been available. Our evaluation of the nature of the substitute service is for naught if the service simply is not available to the affected customers. We therefore tentatively conclude that one criterion in any adequate substitute test that we adopt should be that the carrier demonstrates in its application that the substitute service will remain available in the affected service area to the persons to whom the discontinued service had been available. We seek comment on this tentative conclusion. Should we adopt a de minimis threshold by percentage of prior population or geographic area reached for which loss of coverage is tolerable?

    35. Public Knowledge suggests that we focus specifically on wireline coverage when evaluating the adequacy of the substitute service. We recognize that as illustrated by consumer response to Verizon's attempt to replace the wireline network destroyed by Super Storm Sandy with its wireless VoiceLink service, a significant portion of consumers view coverage equivalent to that traditionally found in wireline telephony as essential. And commenters noted the importance of the availability of wireline coverage to rural consumers, for whom there tend to be fewer available options. Should we look differently at technologies that offer the level of coverage traditionally afforded by wireline telephony from those that do not, and if so how?

    2. Consumer Education

    36. As discussed in the Order above, we remain concerned about the level of consumer education and outreach around technology transitions generally. A discontinuance of an existing service on which customers presently rely creates an especially great need for customer education. It was for that reason that the January 2014 Technology Transitions Order, the Commission set forth an expectation that providers conducting any experiment would “engage in customer outreach and education efforts.” Accordingly, we propose to require that part of the evaluation of a section 214 application to discontinue a legacy retail service should include whether the carrier has an adequate customer education and outreach plan. We seek comment on this proposal, and also on whether there are particular metrics and guidance the Commission can and should provide concerning what would constitute an adequate education and outreach plan. We also seek comment on how best to work with the state commissions and Tribal governments on such education and outreach plans.

    3. Other Issues

    37. Other Criteria. Based on the record received to date, we tentatively conclude that we should not adopt the following proposals by commenters to include the following criteria in the section 214 process: (1) Operability during emergencies, including power outages, because this issue is being addressed by the Commission through separate means; (2) adequate transmission capability, because end users and carriers should be free to reach agreement on services at a wide range of transmission capacities; (3) affordability, because the evaluation process in this context should focus on the nature of the service and because cost is not part of the equation in determining whether an available alternative service constitutes an adequate substitute for the service sought to be discontinued; and (4) connection persistence, because the Commission today takes other action to address that issue. We recognize the concerns about the often increased costs associated with a transition from a TDM-based service to an IP-based service. And we take such concerns into account when evaluating section 214 applications for discontinuance authority. We seek comment on these tentative conclusions. Could any of these criteria be reformulated in such a way that would warrant adoption? Should we adopt any other criteria not listed above?

    38. Rural LEC Exemption. If we determine that it is appropriate to adopt any or all of the proposed criteria, should we include an exemption for some or all of them for rural LECs, as proposed by TCA? If so, should that exemption apply to all criteria? Or should the exemption apply to only certain criteria and, if so, which ones? And what criteria would a carrier have to meet to qualify for such an exemption? Would it be appropriate to apply it to LECs with fewer than two percent of the Nation's subscriber lines in the aggregate nationwide? Would some other measure be appropriate? We note that certain commenters assert that rural LECs should be exempt from any criteria for evaluating substitute services because of the often very limited options available in rural locales. Other commenters are concerned about any such exemption given the relative scarcity of alternatives available in many rural areas.

    39. Market Power Analysis. NASUCA proposes that, when determining the adequacy of substitutes, it would be appropriate to use the “traditional antitrust formula for determining substitutability, used in the Qwest Phoenix Forbearance Order.” In the Qwest Phoenix Forbearance Order, the Commission evaluated Qwest's petition for forbearance using a market power analysis that is similar to that used by the Commission in many prior proceedings and by the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice in antitrust reviews. Under this approach, the Commission “separately evaluate[d] competition for distinct services, for example differentiating among the various retail services purchased by residential and small, medium, and large business customers, and the various wholesale services purchased by other carriers.” The Commission also considered “how competition varie[d] within localized areas in the [relevant market].” To what extent would this market power analysis help inform an evaluation of whether adequate substitutes exist? What specific parts of the market power analysis would be beneficial when determining whether adequate substitutes exist?

    B. Section 214(a) Discontinuance Process

    40. In the -NPRM, the Commission sought comment on whether it should revise section 63.71 of its rules, which establishes the procedures that carriers must follow to obtain section 214(a) approval for discontinuances, including notification to affected customers. We noted our effort to strike the right balance between providing carriers the ability to schedule TDM discontinuance as part of their transition plans, and the need for carrier-customers to plan for the transition as well as prepare their end user customers for possible changes to offerings that depend on the discontinuing carrier's last-mile inputs. We received some comment in response to the NPRM regarding what parties believe is a sufficient notice period. In response to the NPRM, XO and Birch et al. recommend requiring that carriers provide advance notice of discontinuance before filing an application with the Commission, while the Competitive Carriers Association recommends a longer discontinuance process. AT&T alternatively argues that any expanded notice is not necessary because the Commission has the option to remove a section 214 application from streamlined processing.

    41. We find we need a more complete record on this issue before determining whether to adopt any additional modifications to Section 63.71 of our rules. Accordingly, we seek further comment on whether we should update Section 63.71, including the costs and benefits of any changes. Section 63.71(b) states that a carrier shall file its 214 application “on or after the date on which notice has been given to all affected customers.” Section 63.71(d) provides that applications shall be automatically granted on the 31st day after filing an application for non-dominant carriers and the 60th day for dominant carriers, unless the Commission notifies the applicant that the grant will not be automatically effective. Should we update the earliest date by which the Commission may grant approval, either for dominant or non-dominant carriers or for both? We emphasize we wish to maintain a streamlined process for carriers that satisfy our existing criteria for such treatment and the adequate substitutes proposal discussed above if adopted. Should we require advance notice of discontinuance or are the existing procedures in section 63.71 sufficient? As noted above, parties recommend various revisions to the notice for discontinuance of TDM-based services used as wholesale inputs. While we seek comment on those proposals, we also seek comment on whether to align timing for notices of discontinuance with notices of copper retirement. In the Order, we extend the notice of copper retirement to interconnecting carriers and non-residential retail customers to at least 180 days and the notice period to residential retail customers to at least 90 days based upon our conclusion that these time periods strike the right balance between the planning needs of competitive carriers and customers and the need for incumbent LECs to be able to move forward in a timely fashion with their business plans. We seek comment on whether this same rationale applies for discontinuances of TDM-based service to carrier-customers that may need to modify their end-user contracts to accommodate the discontinuance. We also seek comment on whether modification of section 63.71 to extend notice would conflict with any other Commission rules and procedures.

    42. We also seek comment on whether we should revise our rules to explicitly allow email-based notice or other forms of electronic or other notice of discontinuance to customers. We recognize that email may be the preferred method of notice for both the carriers seeking discontinuance and consumers. We seek comment as to whether there are efficiencies of electronic distribution such that we should make a rule change to include it as a method of delivery. Would email or other electronic forms of notice harm or disadvantage any end users? Should alternative forms of notice be permissible only with customer consent, and if so what should be permissible methods to obtain consent? Are there factors the Commission should take into consideration for certain groups of customers, such as accessible formats? Are there any other issues we should consider to ensure all affected consumers receive adequate notice? For example, how should notice be provided when consumers lack access to broadband?

    C. Section 214(a) Discontinuance Notice to Tribal Governments

    43. In the Order above, we extend notice of copper retirements to include notice to the public utility commission and the governor of the state in which the retirement will occur and to the Secretary of Defense, consistent with our current section 214 discontinuance rules. We also extend notice of copper retirements to affected Tribal governments so they may prepare for network changes affecting their communities. Here, we tentatively conclude that the same justification applies in the section 214 context of a discontinuance, reduction or impairment of a service. Tribal governments should be in a position to prepare and address any concerns from consumers in their Tribal communities. We also tentatively conclude that it is appropriate to make the notice requirements for section 214 discontinuance applications and copper retirement network changes consistent, as both involve changes to the Nation's communications networks and affect different groups of consumers. We therefore seek comment on including notice to Tribal governments as part of our section 214 discontinuance application process. Specifically, we seek comment on our tentative conclusion that we should revise rule 63.71(a) to include notice to Tribal governments in order to make our copper retirement and service discontinuance notice requirements consistent. Rule 63.71 requires that applications to discontinue, reduce or impair service to a community provide notice to the “Governor of the State in which the discontinuance, reduction, or impairment of service is proposed, and also to the Secretary of Defense.” We tentatively conclude that we should include any Tribal Nations in the state in which discontinuance, reduction, or impairment of service is proposed regardless of the reason for the discontinuance. To be clear, the proposed notice requirement would be permanent (barring future Commission action) and would not terminate with the reasonably comparable wholesale access condition at the conclusion of the Commission's special access proceeding. We seek comment on this proposal, including its costs and benefits. We seek comment on whether a different or limited scope of notice to Tribal governments would be appropriate. We seek comment on our proposal and if there are any legal, regulatory or procedural impairments to our extension of notice to Tribal governments. Are there any other issues of notice, such as form or content that are unique to Tribal governments the Commission should consider?

    D. Copper Retirement Process—Good Faith Communication Requirement

    44. In the Order above, we eliminate the objection procedures previously available to interconnecting carriers upon receipt of a copper retirement notice and instead adopt a requirement that incumbent LECs work with interconnecting entities in good faith to ensure that those entities have the information needed to allow them to accommodate the transition with no disruption of service to their end user customers. Should we provide specific objective criteria by which to evaluate this good faith requirement to ensure that all parties are aware of their respective rights and obligations? And what recourse should be available to an interconnecting entity who believes that an incumbent LEC is not acting in good faith? If the Commission finds an incumbent LEC has failed to fulfill the good faith communication requirement, should the retirement be postponed by an additional 90 days (beyond the 180-day mark)? Are there limitations on how much and what types of information an incumbent LEC should be required to provide to an interconnecting entity?

    E. Termination of Interim Reasonably Comparable Wholesale Access Condition

    45. As discussed above, to support the current technology transitions, we seek to avoid delays due to diminished competition by imposing light-handed regulation through the interim reasonably comparable wholesale access condition. The Commission will have adopted and implemented the rules and policies that end the reasonably comparable wholesale access interim rule when: (1) It identifies a set of rules and/or policies that will ensure rates, terms, and conditions for special access services are just and reasonable; (2) it provides notice such rules are effective in the Federal Register; and (3) such rules and/or policies become effective. We recognize, however, that the special access proceeding will not address the status of commercial wholesale platform services such as AT&T's Local Service Complete and Verizon's Wholesale Advantage that include incumbent LEC loops, transport and local circuit switching.

    46. We accordingly seek comment on how to facilitate continuation of commercial wholesale platform services, which we believe serve an important business need for enterprises that seek, among other things, “the ability to obtain service from a single supplier at their disparate retail locations nationwide.” Granite explains that it and other similarly-situated competitive carriers “serve multi-location business customers that have modest demands for voice services at each location by combining value-added services with underlying TDM-based telephone services purchased at wholesale from incumbent LECs.” Granite recently submitted a study prepared by Charles River Associates that finds, based on Granite's own estimate of the per-line added value that its service provides to customers, that loss of wholesale access to incumbents' voice services would result in customer harm of between $4.443 and 10.168 billion per year. We note that this study is additionally premised on the expectation that absent regulatory action by the Commission, wholesale arrangements between companies like Granite and incumbent providers will not occur. We seek comment on that underlying assumption and on the incentives of incumbents to enter into, or not enter into, IP-based wholesale arrangements for voice service. We recognize that incumbents are currently offering such commercial arrangements in TDM on a voluntary basis and we encourage such arrangements and hope they continue to be standard wholesale offerings, including in IP. Verizon, for example, points out that “[c]ommercial UNE-P replacement products are market-based responses to competitive pressures, and in the six wire centers that Verizon migrated to all-fiber facilities, Verizon provided Wholesale Advantage—[Verizon's] UNE-P commercial replacement product—onto the new fiber facilities with no change in rates, terms, or conditions.” We further recognize the benefits of agreements reached through market negotiations.

    47. However, to the extent that the Commission finds that wholesale arrangements for voice service are unlikely to occur in the future on a marketplace basis, would it be appropriate for the Commission to require reasonably comparable wholesale access for commercial wholesale platform services for a further interim period beyond completion of the special access proceeding? If the Commission does extend this requirement, for how long should it be extended and should its substance be revised? Should the timeframe be connected to any pending Commission proceeding?

    III. Procedural Matters A. Ex Parte Presentations

    48. This proceeding shall continue to be treated as a “permit-but-disclose” proceeding in accordance with the Commission's ex parte rules. Persons making ex parte presentations must file a copy of any written presentation or a memorandum summarizing any oral presentation within two business days after the presentation (unless a different deadline applicable to the Sunshine period applies). Persons making oral ex parte presentations are reminded that memoranda summarizing the presentation must (1) list all persons attending or otherwise participating in the meeting at which the ex parte presentation was made, and (2) summarize all data presented and arguments made during the presentation. If the presentation consisted in whole or in part of the presentation of data or arguments already reflected in the presenter's written comments, memoranda or other filings in the proceeding, the presenter may provide citations to such data or arguments in his or her prior comments, memoranda, or other filings (specifying the relevant page and/or paragraph numbers where such data or arguments can be found) in lieu of summarizing them in the memorandum. Documents shown or given to Commission staff during ex parte meetings are deemed to be written ex parte presentations and must be filed consistent with rule 1.1206(b). In proceedings governed by rule 1.49(f) or for which the Commission has made available a method of electronic filing, written ex parte presentations and memoranda summarizing oral ex parte presentations, and all attachments thereto, must be filed through the electronic comment filing system available for that proceeding, and must be filed in their native format (e.g., .doc, .xml, .ppt, searchable .pdf). Participants in this proceeding should familiarize themselves with the Commission's ex parte rules.

    B. Filing Instructions

    49. Pursuant to sections 1.415 and 1.419 of the Commission's rules, interested parties may file comments and reply comments on or before the dates indicated on the first page of this document. Comments may be filed by paper or by using the Commission's Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS).

    Electronic Filers: Comments may be filed electronically using the Internet by accessing the ECFS: http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/ecfs2/.

    Paper Filers: Parties who choose to file by paper must file an original and one copy of each filing. Because more than one docket or rulemaking number appears in the caption of this proceeding, filers must submit two additional copies for each additional docket or rulemaking number. Filings can be sent by hand or messenger delivery, by commercial overnight courier, or by first-class or overnight U.S. Postal Service mail. All filings must be addressed to the Commission's Secretary, Office of the Secretary, Federal Communications Commission.

    All hand-delivered or messenger-delivered paper filings for the Commission's Secretary must be delivered to FCC Headquarters at 445 12th St. SW., Room TW-A325, Washington, DC 20554. The filing hours are 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. All hand deliveries must be held together with rubber bands or fasteners. Any envelopes and boxes must be disposed of before entering the building.

    Commercial overnight mail (other than U.S. Postal Service Express Mail and Priority Mail) must be sent to 9300 East Hampton Drive, Capitol Heights, MD 20743.

    U.S. Postal Service first-class, Express, and Priority mail must be addressed to 445 12th Street SW., Washington, DC 20554.

    People with Disabilities: To request materials in accessible formats for people with disabilities (braille, large print, electronic files, audio format), send an email to [email protected] or call the Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau at 202-418-0530 (voice), 202-418-0432 (tty).

    C. Paperwork Reduction Act Analysis

    50. This document contains proposed new and modified information collection requirements. The Commission, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork burdens, invites the general public and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to comment on the information collection requirements contained in this document, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Public Law 104-13. In addition, pursuant to the Small Business Paperwork Relief Act of 2002, Public Law 107-198, see 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(4), we seek specific comment on how we might further reduce the information collection burden for small business concerns with fewer than 25 employees.

    D. Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis

    51. As required by the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), the Commission has prepared an Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (IRFA) of the possible significant economic impact on small entities of the policies and rules proposed in the FNPRM contained herein. The analysis is found below. We request written public comment on the analysis. Comments must be filed in accordance with the same deadlines as comments filed in response to the FNPRM and must have a separate and distinct heading designating them as responses to the IRFA. The Commission's Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau, Reference Information Center, will send a copy of this FNPRM, including the IRFA, to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration.

    A. Need for, and Objectives of, the Proposed Rules

    52. Building on the record developed in response to the NPRM, in the FNPRM the Commission proposes specific criteria for the Commission to use in evaluating the adequacy of substitute services in connection with applications to discontinue retail services pursuant to section 214 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended. The Commission believes all stakeholders will benefit from an additional round of comments focused on its specific proposals. Adopting specific criteria will enable the Commission to ensure that it can carry out its statutorily-mandated responsibilities in a technology-neutral manner and provide clear up-front guidance that will minimize complications when carriers seek approval for large-scale discontinuances. The Commission also seeks further comment on what constitutes a sufficient notice period for affected customers in connection with a section 214 discontinuance application and whether it should revise its rules to explicitly allow email-based notice or other forms of electronic or other notice of discontinuance to customers. And the Commission seeks comment on including notice to Tribal governments as part of the section 214 discontinuance application process. The Commission also seeks comment on defining what constitutes “good faith” in connection with the requirement adopted in the Order that incumbent LECs act in good faith to provide interconnecting entities with information needed in order to accommodate planned copper retirements. Finally, the Commission seeks comment on how to facilitate continuation of commercial wholesale platform services after technology transitions.

    53. First, the FNPRM seeks additional comment on possible criteria against which to measure “what would constitute an adequate substitute for retail services that a carrier seeks to discontinue, reduce, or impair in connection with a technology transition (e.g., TDM to IP, wireline to wireless)” in order “to ensure that we protect consumers, competition, and public safety.” The Commission continues to believe that establishing criteria for evaluating the adequacy of replacement services will benefit industry and consumers by providing certainty. Because the record as developed thus far does not provide sufficient clarity to allow the Commission to fully establish clear criteria, the Commission seeks additional comment on specific proposals so that it has the benefit of more targeted input in order to adopt rules that are carefully tailored to address the issues presented by the ongoing technology transitions process and that will stand the test of time. The FNPRM also seeks comment on effective ways to ensure compliance with the criteria and tentatively proposes requiring an officer or other authorized public representative to certify the accuracy of the statements in the application regarding the criteria. The availability of adequate substitute services is one of five factors the Commission looks at in evaluating section 214 discontinuance applications under existing precedent, to be balanced against the other factors in determining whether the public convenience and necessity will be adversely affected by discontinuance of the service at issue.

    54. Second, the FNPRM seeks additional comment on whether and how the Commission should adopt modifications to Section 63.71 of our rules, including the costs and benefits of any changes. In the NPRM, the Commission sought comment on whether it should revise section 63.71 of its rules, which establishes the procedures that carriers must follow to obtain section 214(a) approval for discontinuances, including notification to affected customers and the earliest dates by the Commission may grant approval of discontinuance applications. Although some entities filed comments, in the FNPRM the Commission determines that we need a more complete record on this issue. The FNPRM also seeks more general comment on whether it should revise its rules to explicitly allow email-based notice or other forms of electronic or other notice of discontinuance to customers and on whether there are factors the Commission should take into consideration for certain groups of customers, such as accessibility formats, or any other issues that the Commission should consider to ensure that all affected consumers receive adequate notice.

    55. Third, the FNPRM tentatively concludes that the Commission should extend the notice requirements for discontinuances, reductions, or impairments of service to affected Tribal governments and seeks comment on including notice to Tribal governments as part of our section 214 discontinuance application process. Specifically, the FNPRM seeks comment on the tentative conclusion that the Commission should revise section 63.71(a) of its rules to include notice to Tribal governments in order to make its copper retirement and service discontinuance notice requirements consistent. The FNPRM tentatively concludes that the Commission should include any Tribal Nations in the state in which discontinuance, reduction, or impairment of service is proposed regardless of the reason for the discontinuance, and seeks comment on this, including its costs and benefits. Finally, the FNPRM seeks comment on whether a different or limited scope of notice to Tribal governments would be appropriate and whether there are any other issues of notice, such as form or content, unique to Tribal governments that the Commission should consider.

    56. Fourth, the FNPRM notes that, in the attached Report and Order, the Commission eliminates the objection procedures previously available to interconnecting carriers upon receipt of a copper retirement notice and instead adopts a requirement that incumbent LECs work with interconnecting entities in good faith to ensure that those entities have the information needed to allow them to accommodate the transition with no disruption of service to their end user customers. The FNPRM seeks comment on whether the Commission should provide specific objective criteria by which to evaluate this good faith requirement to ensure that all parties are aware of their respective rights and obligations. The FNPRM also seeks comment on what recourse should be available to an interconnecting entity who believes that an incumbent LEC is not acting in good faith and whether there are limitations on how much and what types of information an incumbent LEC should be required to provide to an interconnecting entity.

    57. Finally, the FNPRM notes that to support the current technology transitions, we seek to avoid delays due to diminished competition by imposing light-handed regulation through the interim reasonably comparable wholesale access condition. The FNPRM seeks comment on how to facilitate continuation of commercial wholesale platform services, which the Commission believes serve an important business need for enterprises that seek, among other things, “the ability to obtain service from a single supplier at their disparate retail locations nationwide.” The Commission seeks comment on whether to the extent that the Commission finds that wholesale arrangements for voice service are unlikely to occur in the future on a marketplace basis, it would be appropriate for the Commission to require reasonably comparable wholesale access for commercial wholesale platform services for a further interim period beyond completion of the special access proceeding and, if so, for how long.

    B. Legal Basis

    58. The proposed action is authorized under Sections 1, 2, 4(i), 214, and 251 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended; 47 U.S.C. 151, 152, 154(i), 214, and 251.

    C. Description and Estimate of the Number of Small Entities To Which the Proposed Rules Will Apply

    59. The RFA directs agencies to provide a description and, where feasible, an estimate of the number of small entities that may be affected by the proposed rules, if adopted. The RFA generally defines the term “small entity” as having the same meaning as the terms “small business,” “small organization,” and “small governmental jurisdiction.” In addition, the term “small business” has the same meaning as the term “small-business concern” under the Small Business Act. A “small-business concern” is one which: (1) Is independently owned and operated; (2) is not dominant in its field of operation; and (3) satisfies any additional criteria established by the SBA.

    60. The majority of our proposals in the FNPRM will affect obligations on incumbent LECs. Other entities, however, that choose to object to network change notification for copper retirement under our new proposed rules may be economically impacted by the proposals in this FNPRM.

    1. Total Small Businesses

    61. A small business is an independent business having less than 500 employees. Nationwide, there are a total of approximately 28.2 million small businesses, according to the SBA. Affected small entities as defined by industry are as follows.

    2. Wireline Providers

    62. Wired Telecommunications Carriers. The SBA has developed a small business size standard for Wired Telecommunications Carriers, which consists of all such companies having 1,500 or fewer employees. According to Census Bureau data for 2007, there were 3,188 firms in this category, total, that operated for the entire year. Of this total, 3,144 firms had employment of 999 or fewer employees, and 44 firms had employment of 1000 employees or more. Thus, under this size standard, the majority of firms can be considered small.

    63. Local Exchange Carriers (LECs). Neither the Commission nor the SBA has developed a size standard for small businesses specifically applicable to local exchange services. The closest applicable size standard under SBA rules is for Wired Telecommunications Carriers. Under that size standard, such a business is small if it has 1,500 or fewer employees. According to Commission data, 1,307 carriers reported that they were incumbent local exchange service providers. Of these 1,307 carriers, an estimated 1,006 have 1,500 or fewer employees and 301 have more than 1,500 employees. Consequently, the Commission estimates that most providers of local exchange service are small entities that may be affected by rules adopted pursuant to the FNPRM.

    64. Incumbent Local Exchange Carriers (Incumbent LECs). Neither the Commission nor the SBA has developed a small business size standard specifically for incumbent local exchange services. The closest applicable size standard under SBA rules is for the category Wired Telecommunications Carriers. Under that size standard, such a business is small if it has 1,500 or fewer employees. According to Commission data, 1,307 carriers reported that they were incumbent local exchange service providers. Of these 1,307 carriers, an estimated 1,006 have 1,500 or fewer employees and 301 have more than 1,500 employees. Consequently, the Commission estimates that most providers of incumbent local exchange service are small businesses that may be affected by rules adopted pursuant to the FNPRM.

    65. We have included small incumbent LECs in this present RFA analysis. As noted above, a “small business” under the RFA is one that, inter alia, meets the pertinent small business size standard (e.g., a telephone communications business having 1,500 or fewer employees), and “is not dominant in its field of operation.” The SBA's Office of Advocacy contends that, for RFA purposes, small incumbent LECs are not dominant in their field of operation because any such dominance is not “national” in scope. We have therefore included small incumbent LECs in this RFA analysis, although we emphasize that this RFA action has no effect on Commission analyses and determinations in other, non-RFA contexts.

    66. Competitive Local Exchange Carriers (Competitive LECs), Competitive Access Providers (CAPs), Shared-Tenant Service Providers, and Other Local Service Providers. Neither the Commission nor the SBA has developed a small business size standard specifically for these service providers. The appropriate size standard under SBA rules is for the category Wired Telecommunications Carriers. Under that size standard, such a business is small if it has 1,500 or fewer employees. According to Commission data, 1,442 carriers reported that they were engaged in the provision of either competitive local exchange services or competitive access provider services. Of these 1,442 carriers, an estimated 1,256 have 1,500 or fewer employees and 186 have more than 1,500 employees. In addition, 17 carriers have reported that they are Shared-Tenant Service Providers, and all 17 are estimated to have 1,500 or fewer employees. In addition, 72 carriers have reported that they are Other Local Service Providers. Of the 72, seventy have 1,500 or fewer employees and two have more than 1,500 employees. Consequently, the Commission estimates that most providers of competitive local exchange service, competitive access providers, Shared-Tenant Service Providers, and other local service providers are small entities that may be affected by rules adopted pursuant to the FNPRM.

    67. Interexchange Carriers. Neither the Commission nor the SBA has developed a small business size standard specifically for providers of interexchange services. The appropriate size standard under SBA rules is for the category Wired Telecommunications Carriers. Under that size standard, such a business is small if it has 1,500 or fewer employees. According to Commission data, 359 carriers have reported that they are engaged in the provision of interexchange service. Of these, an estimated 317 have 1,500 or fewer employees and 42 have more than 1,500 employees. Consequently, the Commission estimates that the majority of IXCs are small entities that may be affected by rules adopted pursuant to the FNPRM.

    68. Other Toll Carriers. Neither the Commission nor the SBA has developed a size standard for small businesses specifically applicable to Other Toll Carriers. This category includes toll carriers that do not fall within the categories of interexchange carriers, operator service providers, prepaid calling card providers, satellite service carriers, or toll resellers. The closest applicable size standard under SBA rules is for Wired Telecommunications Carriers. Under that size standard, such a business is small if it has 1,500 or fewer employees. According to Commission data, 284 companies reported that their primary telecommunications service activity was the provision of other toll carriage. Of these, an estimated 279 have 1,500 or fewer employees and five have more than 1,500 employees. Consequently, the Commission estimates that most Other Toll Carriers are small entities that may be affected by rules adopted pursuant to the FNPRM.

    3. Wireless Providers

    69. Wireless Telecommunications Carriers (except Satellite). Since 2007, the Census Bureau has placed wireless firms within this new, broad, economic census category. Under the present and prior categories, the SBA has deemed a wireless business to be small if it has 1,500 or fewer employees. For the category of Wireless Telecommunications Carriers (except Satellite), census data for 2007 show that there were 1,383 firms that operated for the entire year. Of this total, 1,368 firms had employment of 999 or fewer employees and 15 had employment of 1000 employees or more. Since all firms with fewer than 1,500 employees are considered small, given the total employment in the sector, we estimate that the vast majority of wireless firms are small.

    70. Wireless Telephony. Wireless telephony includes cellular, personal communications services, and specialized mobile radio telephony carriers. The SBA has developed a small business size standard for Wireless Telecommunications Carriers (except Satellite). Under the SBA small business size standard, a business is small if it has 1,500 or fewer employees. According to Commission data, 413 carriers reported that they were engaged in wireless telephony. Of these, an estimated 261 have 1,500 or fewer employees and 152 have more than 1,500 employees. Consequently, the Commission estimates that approximately half or more of these firms can be considered small. Thus, using available data, we estimate that the majority of wireless firms can be considered small.

    4. Cable Service Providers

    71. Cable and Other Program Distributors. Since 2007, these services have been defined within the broad economic census category of Wired Telecommunications Carriers; that category is defined as follows: “This industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in operating and/or providing access to transmission facilities and infrastructure that they own and/or lease for the transmission of voice, data, text, sound, and video using wired telecommunications networks. Transmission facilities may be based on a single technology or a combination of technologies.” The SBA has developed a small business size standard for this category, which is: all such firms having 1,500 or fewer employees. To gauge small business prevalence for these cable services we must, however, use current census data that are based on the previous category of Cable and Other Program Distribution and its associated size standard; that size standard was all such firms having $13.5 million or less in annual receipts. According to Census Bureau data for 2007, there were a total of 3,188 firms in this category that operated for the entire year. Of this total, 2,694 firms had annual receipts of under $10 million, and 504 firms had receipts of $10 million or more. Thus, the majority of these firms can be considered small and may be affected by rules adopted pursuant to the FNPRM.

    72. Cable Companies and Systems. The Commission has also developed its own small business size standards, for the purpose of cable rate regulation. Under the Commission's rules, a “small cable company” is one serving 400,000 or fewer subscribers, nationwide. Industry data shows that there are 660 cable operators in the country. Of this total, all but eleven cable operators nationwide are small under this size standard. In addition, under the Commission's rules, a “small system” is a cable system serving 15,000 or fewer subscribers. Current Commission records show 4,945 cable systems nationwide. Of this total, 4,380 cable systems have less than 20,000 subscribers, and 565 systems have 20,000 or more subscribers, based on the same records. Thus, under this standard, we estimate that most cable systems are small entities.

    5. All Other Telecommunications

    73. The Census Bureau defines this industry as including “establishments primarily engaged in providing specialized telecommunications services, such as satellite tracking, communications telemetry, and radar station operation. This industry also includes establishments primarily engaged in providing satellite terminal stations and associated facilities connected with one or more terrestrial systems and capable of transmitting telecommunications to, and receiving telecommunications from, satellite systems. Establishments providing Internet services or Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services via client-supplied telecommunications connections are also included in this industry.” The SBA has developed a small business size standard for this category; that size standard is $32.5 million or less in average annual receipts. According to Census Bureau data for 2007, there were 2,383 firms in this category that operated for the entire year. Of these, 2,346 firms had annual receipts of under $25 million and 37 firms had annual receipts of $25 million or more. Consequently, we estimate that the majority of these firms are small entities that may be affected by rules adopted pursuant to the FNPRM.

    D. Description of Projected Reporting, Recordkeeping, and Other Compliance Requirements

    74. The FNPRM proposes a number of rule changes that will affect reporting, recordkeeping, and other compliance requirements. Each of these changes is described below.

    75. The FNPRM seeks comment on specific criteria for the Commission to use in evaluating the adequacy of substitute services in connection with applications to discontinue service pursuant to section 214, specifically seeking comment on possible criteria for evaluating the adequacy of replacement services. The FNPRM also seeks comment on effective ways to ensure compliance with the criteria and tentatively proposes requiring an officer or other authorized public representative to certify the accuracy of the statements in the application regarding the criteria. The FNPRM also seeks comment on whether and how the Commission should adopt modifications to section 63.71 of our rules, including notification to affected customers, and tentatively concludes that the Commission should extend the notice requirements for discontinuances, reductions, or impairments of service to affected Tribal entities. Further, the FNPRM seeks general comment on whether it should revise its rules to allow email-based notice or other forms of electronic or other notice of discontinuance to customers and on whether there are factors the Commission should take into consideration for certain groups of customers, such as accessibility formats, or any other issues that the Commission should consider to ensure that all affected consumers receive adequate notice. Additionally, the FNPRM eliminates the objection procedures previously available to interconnecting carriers upon receipt of a copper retirement notice and instead adopts a requirement that incumbent LECs work with interconnecting entities in good faith to ensure that those entities have the information needed to allow them to accommodate the transition with no disruption of service to their end user customers. The FNPRM seeks comment on what recourse should be available to an interconnecting entity who believes that an incumbent LEC is not acting in good faith and whether there are limitations on how much and what types of information an incumbent LEC should be required to provide to an interconnecting entity. Finally, the Commission seeks comment on how to facilitate continuation of commercial wholesale platform services after technology transitions.

    E. Steps Taken To Minimize Significant Economic Impact on Small Entities, and Significant Alternatives Considered

    76. The RFA requires an agency to describe any significant alternatives that it has considered in reaching its proposed approach, which may include the following four alternatives (among others): (1) The establishment of differing compliance or reporting requirements or timetables that take into account the resources available to small entities; (2) the clarification, consolidation, or simplification of compliance or reporting requirements under the rule for small entities; (3) the use of performance, rather than design, standards; and (4) an exemption from coverage of the rule, or any part thereof, for small entities.

    77. The FNPRM seeks comment on each of its proposed approaches and specifically seeks additional proposals of possible criteria for evaluating the adequacy of replacement services, input on effective ways to ensure compliance with proposed criteria, and comment on whether and how the Commission should adopt modifications to section 63.71 of our rules, including notification to affected customers. The FNPRM also seeks general comment on whether: (1) It should revise its rules to allow email-based notice or other forms of electronic or other notice of discontinuance to customers; (2) there are factors the Commission should take into consideration for certain groups of customers, such as accessibility formats; and (3) there are any other issues that the Commission should consider to ensure that all affected consumers receive adequate notice. And the FNPRM seeks comment on whether it should include Tribal governments in its notice requirements for section 214(a) discontinuance applications. The FNPRM also seeks comment on what recourse should be available to an interconnecting entity who believes that an incumbent LEC that is retiring copper is not acting in good faith to ensure that interconnecting carriers have the information they need, and whether there are limitations on how much and what types of information an incumbent LEC should be required to provide to an interconnecting entity. Finally, the Commission seeks comment on how to facilitate continuation of commercial wholesale platform services after technology transitions.

    F. Federal Rules that May Duplicate, Overlap, or Conflict With the Proposed Rule

    78. None.

    IV. Ordering Clauses

    79. Accordingly, it is ordered that, pursuant to Sections 1-4, 201, 214, 251, and 303(r), of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. 151-154, 201, 214, 251, 303(r), this Report and Order, Order on Reconsideration, and FNPRM of Proposed Rulemaking are adopted.

    80. It is further ordered that the Commission's Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau, Reference Information Center, shall send a copy of this Report and Order and FNPRM of Proposed Rulemaking, including the Final and Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analyses, and this Order on Reconsideration to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration.

    List of Subjects 47 CFR Part 51

    Communications, Communications common carriers, Defense communications, Telecommunications, Telephone.

    47 CFR Part 63

    Cable television, Communications common carriers, Radio, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Telegraph, Telephone.

    Federal Communications Commission. Marlene H. Dortch, Secretary.

    For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Federal Communications Commission proposes to amend 47 CFR part 63 as follows:

    PART 63—EXTENSION OF LINES, NEW LINES, AND DISCONTINUANCE, REDUCTION, OUTAGE AND IMPAIRMENT OF SERVICE BY COMMON CARRIERS; AND GRANTS OF RECOGNIZED PRIVATE OPERATING AGENCY STATUS 1. The authority citation for part 63 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    Sections 1, 4(i), 4(j), 10, 11, 201-205, 214, 218, 403 and 651 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. 151, 154(i), 154(j), 160, 201-205, 214, 218, 403, and 571, unless otherwise noted.

    2. Amend § 63.71 by revising paragraph (a) introductory text and (d), to read as follows:
    § 63.71 Procedures for discontinuance, reduction or impairment of service by domestic carriers.

    (a) The carrier shall notify all affected customers of the planned discontinuance, reduction, or impairment of service and shall notify and submit a copy of its application to the public utility commission and to the Governor of the State in which the discontinuance, reduction, or impairment of service is proposed, to any federally recognized Tribal Nations with authority over the Tribal lands in which the discontinuance, reduction, or impairment of service is proposed, and also to the Secretary of Defense, Attn. Special Assistant for Telecommunications, Pentagon, Washington, DC 20301. Notice shall be in writing to each affected customer unless the Commission authorizes in advance, for good cause shown, another form of notice. Notice shall include the following:

    (d) The application to discontinue, reduce, or impair service, if filed by a domestic, non-dominant carrier, shall be automatically granted on the 31st day after its filing with the Commission without any Commission notification to the applicant unless either:

    (1) The Commission has notified the applicant that the grant will not be automatically effective, or

    (2) The applicant is subject to § 63.602 of this chapter and does not include with its application the certification specified in § 63.602(a) of this chapter. The application to discontinue, reduce or impair service, if filed by a domestic, dominant carrier, shall be automatically granted on the 60th day after its filing with the Commission without any Commission notification to the applicant unless either

    (3) The Commission has notified the applicant that the grant will not be automatically effective, or

    (4) The applicant is subject to § 63.602 of this chapter and does not include with its application the certification specified in § 63.602(a) of this chapter. For purposes of this section, an application will be deemed filed on the date the Commission releases public notice of the filing.

    3. Add § 63.602 to read as follows:
    § 63.602 Additional contents of applications to discontinue, reduce, or impair an existing retail service in favor of a retail service based on a newer technology.

    (a) In order to remain eligible for automatic grant, any domestic carrier that seeks to discontinue, reduce, or impair an existing retail service in favor of a retail service based on a newer technology shall include with its application, in addition to any other information required, a certification that there is an adequate substitute service available for the service to be discontinued, reduced, or impaired and that the substitute service provides adequate:

    (1) Network capacity and reliability;

    (2) Service quality;

    (3) Device and service interoperability, including interoperability with vital third-party services and devices;

    (4) Service for individuals with disabilities, including compatibility with assistive technologies;

    (5) PSAP and 9-1-1 service;

    (6) Cybersecurity;

    (7) Service functionality; and

    (8) Coverage.

    (b) Any domestic carrier that seeks to discontinue, reduce, or impair an existing retail service in favor of a retail service based on a newer technology that does not file the certification described in paragraph (a) of this section shall include with its application, in addition to any other information required, supporting evidence regarding the degree to which there is an adequate substitute or substitutes available for the service to be discontinued, reduced, or impaired, and supporting evidence regarding the degree to which the substitute service(s) provide adequate:

    (1) Network capacity and reliability;

    (2) Service quality;

    (3) Device and service interoperability, including interoperability with vital third-party services and devices;

    (4) Service for individuals with disabilities, including compatibility with assistive technologies;

    (5) PSAP and 9-1-1 service;

    (6) Cybersecurity;

    (7) Service functionality; and

    (8) Coverage.

    (c) A certification pursuant to paragraph (a) of this section must:

    (1) -Set forth a detailed statement explaining the basis for such certification;

    (2) Be executed by an officer or other authorized representative of the applicant; and

    (3) Meet the requirements of § 1.16 of this chapter.

    [FR Doc. 2015-23623 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6712-01-P
    80 186 Friday, September 25, 2015 Notices DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Commodity Credit Corporation Notice of Request for Revision of Currently Approved Information Collection AGENCY:

    Commodity Credit Corporation, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice and request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the Commodity Credit Corporation's (CCC) intention to request a revision from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for a currently approved information collection process in support of the Foreign Market Development Cooperator (Cooperator) Program and the Market Access Program (MAP).

    DATES:

    Comments on this notice must be received by November 24, 2015.

    Additional Information or Comments: Contact Mark Slupek, Director, Program Operations Division, Foreign Agricultural Service, Room 6510, 1400 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC 20250, (202) 720-4327, fax: (202) 720-9361, email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title: Foreign Market Development Cooperator Program and Market Access Program.

    OMB Number: 0551-0026.

    Expiration Date of Approval: February 29, 2016.

    Type of Request: Revision of a currently approved information collection process. The Estimated Number of Respondents and Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents are decreasing.

    Abstract: The primary objective of the Foreign Market Development Cooperator Program and the Market Access Program is to encourage and aid in the creation, maintenance, and expansion of commercial export markets for U.S. agricultural products through cost-share assistance to eligible trade organizations. The programs are a cooperative effort between CCC and the eligible trade organizations. Currently, there are about 64 organizations participating directly in the programs with activities in more than 100 countries.

    Prior to initiating program activities, each Cooperator or MAP participant must submit a detailed application to the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) which includes an assessment of overseas market potential; market or country strategies, constraints, goals, and benchmarks; proposed market development activities; estimated budgets; and performance measurements. Prior years' plans often dictate the content of current year plans because many activities are continuations of previous activities. Each Cooperator or MAP participant is also responsible for submitting: (1) Reimbursement claims for approved costs incurred in carrying out approved activities, (2) an end-of-year contribution report, (3) travel reports, and (4) progress reports/evaluation studies. Cooperators or MAP participants must maintain records on all information submitted to FAS. The information collected is used by FAS to manage, plan, evaluate, and account for Government resources. The reports and records are required to ensure the proper and judicious use of public funds. Because the number of Participants in MAP and FMD has decreased slightly since 2012, the Estimated Number of Respondents and Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents are decreasing.

    Estimate of Burden: Public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 20 hours per response.

    Respondents: Non-profit agricultural trade organizations, state regional trade groups, agricultural cooperatives, state agencies, and commercial entities.

    Estimated Number of Respondents: 64.

    Estimated Number of Responses per Respondent: 68.

    Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 85,304 hours.

    Copies of this information collection can be obtained from Connie Ehrhart, the Agency Information Collection Coordinator, at (202) 690-1578.

    Request for Comments: Send comments regarding the accuracy of the burden estimate, ways to minimize the burden, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology, or any other aspect of this collection of information to: Director, Program Operations Division, Foreign Agricultural Service, Room 6510, STOP 1042, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250. Facsimile submissions may be sent to (202) 720-9361 and electronic mail submissions should be addressed to: [email protected]

    All responses to this notice will be summarized and included in the request for OMB approval. All comments will also become a matter of public record.

    Signed at Washington, DC, on September 18, 2015. Suzanne Palmieri, Acting Administrator, Foreign Agricultural Service, and Vice President, Commodity Credit Corporation.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24394 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-10-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Federal Crop Insurance Corporation [Docket No. FCIC-15-0006] Notice of Request for Renewal of a Currently Approved Information Collection AGENCY:

    Federal Crop Insurance Corporation, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Renewal of approval of an information collection; comment request.

    SUMMARY:

    This notice announces a public comment period on the information collection requests (ICRs) associated with the Multiple Peril Crop Insurance.

    DATES:

    Comments that we receive on this notice will be accepted until close of business November 24, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    FCIC prefers that comments be submitted electronically through the Federal eRulemaking Portal. You may submit comments, identified by Docket ID No. FCIC-15-0006, by any of the following methods:

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

    Mail: Director, Product Administration and Standards Division, Risk Management Agency, United States Department of Agriculture, P.O. Box 419205, Kansas City, MO 64133-6205.

    All comments received, including those received by mail, will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided, and can be accessed by the public. All comments must include the agency name and docket number for this notice. For detailed instructions on submitting comments and additional information, see http://www.regulations.gov. If you are submitting comments electronically through the Federal eRulemaking Portal and want to attach a document, we ask that it be in a text-based format. If you want to attach a document that is a scanned Adobe PDF file, it must be scanned as text and not as an image, thus allowing FCIC to search and copy certain portions of your submissions. For questions regarding attaching a document that is a scanned Adobe PDF file, please contact the RMA Web Content Team at (816) 823-4694 or by email at [email protected].

    Privacy Act: Anyone is able to search the electronic form of all comments received for any 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 complete User Notice and Privacy Notice for Regulations.gov at http://www.regulations.gov/#!privacyNotice.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Director, Product Administration and Standards Division, Risk Management Agency, United States Department of Agriculture, Beacon Facility, Stop 0812, Room 421, P.O. Box 419205, Kansas City, MO 64141-6205, telephone (816) 926-7730.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title: Multiple Peril Crop Insurance.

    OMB Number: 0563-0053.

    Expiration Date of Approval: January 31, 2016.

    Type of Request: Renewal of a currently approved information collection.

    Abstract: The information collection requirements for this renewal package are necessary for administering the Federal crop insurance program. Producers are required to report specific data when they apply for Federal crop insurance and report acreage, yields, and notices of loss. Insurance companies accept applications; issue policies; establish and provide insurance coverage; compute liability, premium, subsidies, and losses; indemnify producers; and report specific data to FCIC as required in Appendix III/M13 Handbook. Commodities for which Federal crop insurance is available are included in this information collection package.

    FCIC is requesting the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to renew the approval of this information collection for an additional 3 years.

    The purpose of this notice is to solicit comments from the public concerning this information collection. These comments will help us:

    (1) Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information has practical utility;

    (2) Evaluate the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information;

    (3) Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and

    (4) Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond (such as through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses).

    Estimate of Burden: The public reporting burden for this collection of information are estimated to average 0.76 of an hour per response.

    Respondents/Affected Entities: Producers and insurance companies reinsured by FCIC.

    Estimated Annual Number of Respondents: 590,750

    Estimated Annual Number of Responses Per Respondent: 19.2

    Estimated Annual Number of Responses: 11,331,829

    Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 8,555,856

    All responses to this notice will be summarized and included in the request for OMB approval. All comments will also become a matter of public record.

    Signed in Washington, DC, on September 21, 2015. Brandon C. Willis, Manager, Federal Crop Insurance Corporation.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24413 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-34-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Forest Service Yavapai Resource Advisory Committee AGENCY:

    Forest Service, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice of meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The Yavapai Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) will meet in Prescott, Arizona. The committee is authorized under the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act (Pub.L 110-343) (the Act) and operates in compliance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act. The purpose of the committee is to improve collaborative relationships and to provide advice and recommendations to the Forest Service concerning projects and funding consistent with the title II of the Act. The meeting is open to the public. The purpose of the meeting is to review and recommend projects.

    DATES:

    The meeting will be held May 13, 2014 at 1:00 p.m.

    All RAC meetings are subject to cancellation. For status of meeting prior to attendance, please contact the person listed under For Further Information Contact.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting will be held at the Prescott Fire Center, 2400 Melville Drive, Prescott, Arizona.

    Written comments may be submitted as described under Supplementary Information. All comments, including names and addresses when provided, are placed in the record and are available for public inspection and copying. The public may inspect comments received at Prescott Fire Center. Please call ahead to facilitate entry into the building.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Debbie Maneely, RAC Coordiantor, by phone at 928-443-8130 or via email at [email protected]

    Individuals who use telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1-800-877-8339 between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m., Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday. Please make requests in advance for sign language interpreting, assistive listening devices or other reasonable accommodation for access to the facility or procedings by contacting the person listed above.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Additional RAC information, including the meeting agenda and the meeting summary/minutes can be found at the following Web site: http://www.fs.usda.gov/main/prescott/workingtogether/advisorycommittees. The agenda will include time for people to make oral statements of three minutes or less. Individuals wishing to make an oral statement should request in writing by May 5, 2014 to be scheduled on the agenda. Anyone who would like to bring related matters to the attention of the committee may file written statements with the committee staff before or after the meeting. Written comments and requests for time for oral comments must be sent to Debbie Maneely, RAC Coordiantor, Prescott National Forest Supervisor's Office, 344 South Cortez Street, Prescott, Arizona 86301; or by email to [email protected], or via facsimile to 928-443-8208.

    Meeting Accommodations: If you are a person requiring reasonable accommodation, please make requests in advance for sign language interpreting, assistive listening devices or other reasonable accommodation for access to the facility or proceedings by contacting the person listed in the section titled FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. All reasonable accommodation requests are managed on a case by case basis.

    Dated: March 11, 2014. Teresa A. Chase, Forest Supervisor.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24385 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3411-15-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [B-64-2015] Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) 230—Piedmont Triad Area, North Carolina, Notification of Proposed Production Activity, Deere-Hitachi Construction Machinery Corporation, (Hydraulic Excavators), Kernersville, North Carolina

    The Piedmont Triad Partnership, grantee of FTZ 230, submitted a notification of proposed production activity to the FTZ Board on behalf of Deere-Hitachi Construction Machinery Corporation (Deere-Hitachi), located in Kernersville, North Carolina. The notification conforming to the requirements of the regulations of the FTZ Board (15 CFR 400.22) was received on September 8, 2015.

    The Deere-Hitachi facility is located within Site 30 of FTZ 230. The facility is used for the production of hydraulic excavators. Pursuant to 15 CFR 400.14(b), FTZ activity would be limited to the specific foreign-status materials and components and specific finished products described in the submitted notification (as described below) and subsequently authorized by the FTZ Board.

    Production under FTZ procedures could exempt Deere-Hitachi from customs duty payments on the foreign-status components used in export production. On its domestic sales, Deere-Hitachi would be able to choose the duty rate during customs entry procedures that applies to finished and unfinished hydraulic excavators (duty-free) for the foreign-status inputs noted below. Customs duties also could possibly be deferred or reduced on foreign-status production equipment.

    The components and materials sourced from abroad include: Plastic hoses/o-rings/seals; decals; rubber hoses not reinforced or otherwise combined with other materials with fittings; rubber hoses reinforced or otherwise combined only with textile materials; rubber hoses reinforced or otherwise combined with other material; v-belts; rubber floor mats/o-rings/seals/fittings; steel bolts/screws/nuts/spring washers/other washers/cotters/cotter pins/pins/stoppers/springs/tracks; steel parts comprised of pipe clamps, hose clamps, clips, caps and plugs and similar fasteners; steel catches; steel locks; engines; hydraulic cylinders; hydraulic motors; parts for cylinders and motors; pumps; compressors; air conditioner parts; fuel/oil filters; receiver-dryers used in air conditioning systems; air filters; parts of filters; excavator parts comprised of covers, shoes, booms, cabs, counterweights, side frames, brackets, large pins, links, and pipes; control valves; other valves; parts of valves; bushings; pulleys; swing bearings; gaskets made of metal sheeting; horns; alarms; sensors; battery relays; electrical switches; sockets; controllers; wire harnesses; and lighters (duty rates range from duty-free to 5.7%).

    Public comment is invited from interested parties. Submissions shall be addressed to the FTZ Board's Executive Secretary at the address below. The closing period for their receipt is November 4, 2015.

    A copy of the notification will be available for public inspection at the Office of the Executive Secretary, Foreign-Trade Zones Board, Room 21013, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230-0002, and in the “Reading Room” section of the FTZ Board's Web site, which is accessible via www.trade.gov/ftz.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Diane Finver at [email protected] or (202) 482-1367.

    Dated: September 18, 2015. Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24451 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [B-36-2015] Foreign-Trade Zone 122—Corpus Christi, Texas, Authorization of Production Activity, voestalpine Texas, LLC, Subzone 122T, (Hot Briquetted Iron), Portland, Texas

    On May 22, 2015, the Port of Corpus Christi Authority, grantee of FTZ 122, submitted a notification of proposed production activity to the Foreign-Trade Zones (FTZ) Board on behalf of voestalpine Texas, LLC, within Subzone 122T, in Portland, Texas.

    The notification was processed in accordance with the regulations of the FTZ Board (15 CFR part 400), including notice in the Federal Register inviting public comment (80 FR 32085, 06/05/2015). The FTZ Board has determined that no further review of the activity is warranted at this time. The production activity described in the notification is authorized, subject to the FTZ Act and the Board's regulations, including Section 400.14.

    Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24447 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [B-63-2015] Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) 33—Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Notification of Proposed Production Activity, DNP Imagingcomm America Corporation, Subzone 33E, (Thermal Transfer Ribbon Master Rolls), Mount Pleasant, Pennsylvania

    DNP Imagingcomm America Corporation (DNP), operator of Subzone 33E, submitted a notification of proposed production activity to the FTZ Board for its facility within Subzone 33E, located in Mount Pleasant, Pennsylvania. The notification conforming to the requirements of the regulations of the FTZ Board (15 CFR 400.22) was received on September 4, 2015.

    DNP already has authority to produce thermal transfer ribbon (TTR) and monochrome TTR printer rolls using certain foreign-sourced components within Subzone 33E. The current request would add the production of TTR master rolls using foreign-sourced rolls of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) film to the scope of authority. Pursuant to 15 CFR 400.14(b), the additional FTZ activity would be limited to the specific foreign-status material and specific finished product described in the submitted notification (as described below) and subsequently authorized by the FTZ Board.

    Production under FTZ procedures could exempt DNP from customs duty payments on the foreign-status rolls of PET film (4.2% duty rate) used in export (an estimated 40 percent of shipments). On its domestic sales, DNP would be able to choose the duty rate during customs entry procedures that applies to TTR master rolls (duty rate 3.7%) for the foreign-status PET film. Customs duties also could possibly be deferred or reduced on foreign-status production equipment.

    The request notes that DNP's proposed activity would involve PET film that is subject to antidumping/countervailing duty (AD/CVD) orders. The FTZ Board's regulations (15 CFR 400.14(e)) require that merchandise subject to AD/CVD orders be admitted to the zone in privileged foreign status (19 CFR 146.41). DNP's request indicates that any PET film subject to an AD/CVD order, proceeding, or suspension of liquidation under AD/CVD procedures would be used only in production for export (no TTR master rolls made from PET film subject to AD/CVD orders would be shipped for U.S. consumption).

    Public comment is invited from interested parties. Submissions shall be addressed to the FTZ Board's Executive Secretary at the address below. The closing period for their receipt is November 4, 2015.

    A copy of the notification will be available for public inspection at the Office of the Executive Secretary, Foreign-Trade Zones Board, Room 21013, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230-0002, and in the “Reading Room” section of the FTZ Board's Web site, which is accessible via www.trade.gov/ftz.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Diane Finver at [email protected] or (202) 482-1367.

    Dated: September 17, 2015. Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24453 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Bureau of Industry and Security Materials Processing Equipment Technical Advisory Committee; Notice of Partially Closed Meeting

    The Materials Processing Equipment Technical Advisory Committee (MPETAC) will meet on October 27, 2015, 9:00 a.m., Room 3884, in the Herbert C. Hoover Building, 14th Street between Pennsylvania and Constitution Avenues NW., Washington, DC. The Committee advises the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Export Administration with respect to technical questions that affect the level of export controls applicable to materials processing equipment and related technology.

    Agenda

    Open Session:

    1. Opening remarks and introductions.

    2. Presentation of papers and comments by the Public.

    3. Discussions on results from last, and proposals from last Wassenaar meeting.

    4. Report on proposed and recently issued changes to the Export Administration Regulations.

    5. Selection of CY 2016 meeting dates.

    6. Other business.

    Closed Session:

    7. Discussion of matters determined to be exempt from the provisions relating to public meetings found in 5 U.S.C. app. 2 §§ 10 (a) (1) and 10 (a) (3).

    The open session will be accessible via teleconference to 20 participants on a first come, first serve basis. To join the conference, submit inquiries to Ms. Yvette Springer at [email protected], no later than October 20, 2015.

    A limited number of seats will be available for the public session. Reservations are not accepted. To the extent that time permits, members of the public may present oral statements to the Committee. The public may submit written statements at any time before or after the meeting. However, to facilitate the distribution of public presentation materials to the Committee members, the Committee suggests that presenters forward the public presentation materials prior to the meeting to Ms. Springer via email.

    The Assistant Secretary for Administration, with the concurrence of the delegate of the General Counsel, formally determined on February 20, 2015, pursuant to Section 10(d) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. app. 2 § 10(d)), that the portion of the meeting dealing with matters the premature disclosure of which would be likely to frustrate significantly implementation of a proposed agency action as described in 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(9)(B) shall be exempt from the provisions relating to public meetings found in 5 U.S.C. app. 2 §§ 10(a) (1) and 10(a) (3). The remaining portions of the meeting will be open to the public.

    For more information, call Yvette Springer at (202) 482-2813.

    Dated: September 21, 2015. Yvette Springer, Committee Liaison Officer .
    [FR Doc. 2015-24389 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-JT-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Bureau of Industry and Security Information Systems Technical Advisory Committee; Notice of Partially Closed Meeting

    The Information Systems Technical Advisory Committee (ISTAC) will meet on October 28 and 29, 2015, 9:00 a.m., in the Herbert C. Hoover Building, Room 3884, 14th Street between Constitution and Pennsylvania Avenues NW., Washington, DC. The Committee advises the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Export Administration on technical questions that affect the level of export controls applicable to information systems equipment and technology.

    Wednesday, October 28 Open Session 1. Welcome and Introductions 2. Working Group Reports 3. Old Business 4. Discussion/Workshop: Wassenaar Arrangement 2013 Plenary Agreements Implementation: Intrusion and Surveillance Items—discussion of the scope of products to be controlled pursuant to the definition of “intrusion software” 5. Industry Presentation: Proposals to BIS for Wassenaar 2016 Cycle 6. New Business Thursday, October 29 Closed Session 7. Discussion of matters determined to be exempt from the provisions relating to public meetings found in 5 U.S.C. app. 2 sections 10(a)(1) and 10(a)(3).

    The open session will be accessible via teleconference to 20 participants on a first come, first serve basis. To join the conference, submit inquiries to Ms. Yvette Springer at [email protected], no later than October 21, 2015.

    A limited number of seats will be available for the public session. Reservations are not accepted. To the extent time permits, members of the public may present oral statements to the Committee. The public may submit written statements at any time before or after the meeting. However, to facilitate distribution of public presentation materials to Committee members, the Committee suggests that public presentation materials or comments be forwarded before the meeting to Ms. Springer.

    The Assistant Secretary for Administration, with the concurrence of the delegate of the General Counsel, formally determined on March 23, 2015, pursuant to section 10(d) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. app. 2 (l0)(d))), that the portion of the meeting concerning trade secrets and commercial or financial information deemed privileged or confidential as described in 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(4) and the portion of the meeting concerning matters the disclosure of which would be likely to frustrate significantly implementation of an agency action as described in 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(9)(B) shall be exempt from the provisions relating to public meetings found in 5 U.S.C. app. 2 sections 10(a)(1) and l0(a)(3). The remaining portions of the meeting will be open to the public.

    For more information, call Yvette Springer at (202) 482-2813.

    Dated: September 21, 2016. Yvette Springer, Committee Liaison Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24365 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-JT- P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Bureau of Industry and Security Emerging Technology and Research Advisory Committee; Notice of Partially Closed Meeting

    The Emerging Technology and Research Advisory Committee (ETRAC) will meet on October 15-16, 2015, 8:45 a.m., Room 3884, at the Herbert C. Hoover Building, 14th Street between Pennsylvania and Constitution Avenues NW., Washington, DC. The Committee advises the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Export Administration on emerging technology and research activities, including those related to deemed exports.

    Agenda Thursday, October 15 Open Session

    1. Welcome and Introductions

    2. Discussion and Reports—Wassenaar Arrangement 2013 Plenary Agreements Implementation: Intrusion and Surveillance items proposed technology control under ECCN 4E001.c

    3. Background of the Proposed Rule

    4. Review of Public Comments on the Proposed Rule

    5. Presentations by industry and individuals on proposed ECCN 4E001.c entry to control “technology for the development of intrusion software”

    6. Comments from the Public participating in person or by telephone

    7. Presentation on CRISPR/Cas9 concept of editing genes

    8. Continued discussions on ECCN 4E001.c

    Friday, October 16 Closed Session

    9. Discussion of matters determined to be exempt from the provisions relating to public meetings found in 5 U.S.C. app. 2 sections 10(a)(1) and l0(a)(3).

    The open sessions will be accessible via teleconference to 25 participants on a first come, first serve basis. To join the conference, submit inquiries to Ms. Yvette Springer at [email protected] no later than, October 8, 2015.

    A limited number of seats will be available for the public session. Reservations are not accepted. To the extent that time permits, members of the public may present oral statements to the Committee. The public may submit written statements at any time before or after the meeting. However, to facilitate the distribution of public presentation materials to the Committee members, the Committee suggests that presenters forward the public presentation materials prior to the meeting to Ms. Springer via email.

    The Assistant Secretary for Administration, with the concurrence of the delegate of the General Counsel, formally determined on February 25, 2015, pursuant to section l0(d) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended, that the portion of the meeting dealing with matters the of which would be likely to frustrate significantly implementation of a proposed agency action as described in 5 U.S.C. 552b(c) (9) (B) shall be exempt from the provisions relating to public meetings found in 5 U.S.C. app. 2 sections 10(a)1 and 10(a) (3). The remaining portions of the meeting will be open to the public.

    For more information, call Yvette Springer at (202) 482-2813.

    Dated: September 21, 2015. Yvette Springer, Committee Liaison Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24390 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-JT-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-602-808] Silicomanganese From Australia: Preliminary Affirmative Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value and Postponement of Final Determination AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce (“Department”) preliminarily determines that silicomanganese from Australia is being, or is likely to be, sold in the United States at less than fair value (“LTFV”), as provided in section 733(b) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the “Act”). The period of investigation is January 1, 2014 through December 31, 2014. The estimated weighted-average dumping margins are shown in the “Preliminary Determination” section of this notice. Interested parties are invited to comment on this preliminary determination.

    DATES:

    Effective Date: September 25, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Magd Zalok or Robert Bolling, AD/CVD Operations, Office IV, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-4162 or (202) 482-3434, respectively.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    The Department published the notice of initiation of this investigation on March 17, 2015.1 Pursuant to section 733(c)(1)(A) of the Act, the Department postponed this preliminary LTFV determination by a period of 50 days.2

    1See Silicomanganese From Australia: Initiation of Less-Than-Fair-Value Investigation, 80 FR 13829 (March 17, 2015).

    2See Silicomanganese From Australia: Postponement of Preliminary Determination of Antidumping Duty Investigation, 80 FR 35304 (June 19, 2015).

    Scope of the Investigation

    The scope of this investigation covers all forms, sizes and compositions of silicomanganese, except low-carbon silicomanganese, including silicomanganese briquettes, fines, and slag. Silicomanganese is properly classifiable under subheading 7202.30.0000 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (“HTSUS”). Low-carbon silicomanganese is excluded from the scope of this investigation. Low-carbon silicomanganese is classifiable under HTSUS subheading 7202.30.0000. The HTSUS subheadings are provided for convenience and customs purposes. The written description of the scope is dispositive. A full description of the scope of the investigation is contained in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum. The Preliminary Decision Memorandum is a public document and is made available to the public via Enforcement and Compliance's Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Centralized Electronic Service System (“ACCESS”). ACCESS is available to registered users at https://access.trade.gov, and is available to all parties in the Department's Central Records Unit, located at room B8024 of the main Department of Commerce building. In addition, a complete version of the Preliminary Decision Memorandum3 can be found at http://enforcement.trade.gov/frn/. The signed and the electronic versions of the Preliminary Decision Memorandum are identical in content.

    3See Memorandum to Ronald K. Lorentzen, “Decision Memorandum for the Preliminary Determination in the Antidumping Duty Investigation of Silicomanganese from Australia,” dated concurrently with this notice. A list of the topics discussed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum appears in Appendix I, below.

    Methodology

    The Department is conducting this investigation in accordance with section 731 of the Act. For a full description of the methodology underlying our conclusions, see the Preliminary Decision Memorandum.

    All Others Rate

    Section 735(c)(5)(A) of the Act provides that the estimated “all others” rate shall be an amount equal to the weighted average of the estimated weighted-average dumping margins established for exporters and producers individually investigated, excluding any zero or de minimis margins, and any margins determined entirely under section 776 of the Act. Pursuant to section 735(c)(5)(B) of the Act, if the estimated weighted-average dumping margins established for all exporters and producers individually examined are zero, de minimis, or determined based entirely under section 776 of the Act, the Department may use any reasonable method to establish the estimated dumping margin for all other producers or exporters.

    We based our calculation of the “All Others” rate on the margin calculated for Tasmanian Electro Metallurgical Company Pty Ltd. (“TEMCO”), the only mandatory respondent in this investigation.

    Preliminary Determination

    The Department preliminarily determines that the following weighted-average dumping margins exist:

    Producer or exporter Weighted-average dumping margin
  • (percent)
  • Tasmanian Electro Metallurgical Company Pty Ltd 11.93 All Others 11.93
    Disclosure and Public Comment

    We will disclose the calculations performed within five days of any public announcement of this notice in accordance with 19 CFR 351.224(b). Case briefs or other written comments may be submitted to the Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance no later than seven days after the date on which the final verification report is issued in this proceeding. Rebuttal briefs, limited to issues raised in case briefs, may be submitted no later than five days after the deadline date for case briefs.4 Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.309(c)(2) and (d)(2), parties who submit case briefs or rebuttal briefs in this proceeding are encouraged to submit with each argument: (1) A statement of the issue; (2) a brief summary of the argument; and (3) a table of authorities.

    4See 19 CFR 351.309.

    Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.310(c), interested parties who wish to request a hearing must submit a written request to the Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance within 30 days of the date of publication of this notice. Requests should contain: (1) The party's name, address and telephone number; (2) the number of participants; and (3) a list of issues parties intend to discuss. Issues raised in the hearing will be limited to those raised in the respective case and rebuttal briefs. If a request for a hearing is made, the Department intends to hold the hearing at the U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230, at a date and time to be determined. See 19 CFR 351.310(d). Parties should confirm by telephone the date, time, and location of the hearing two days before the scheduled date.

    Postponement of Final Determination and Extension of Provisional Measures

    We received a request from the mandatory respondent, TEMCO, that we postpone the final determination and extend the application of the provisional measures prescribed under section 733(d) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.210(e)(2), from a four-month period to a six-month period. Accordingly, we are postponing our final determination no later than 135 days after the date of publication of this preliminary determination, pursuant to section 735(a)(2) of the Act.5 The suspension of liquidation described below will be extended accordingly.6

    5See 19 CFR 351.210(b)(2) and (e); See also See Letter from TEMCO, “Silicomanganese from Australia: Request for Postponement of Final Determination,” dated September 8, 2015.

    6Id.

    Suspension of Liquidation

    In accordance with section 733(d)(2) of the Act, we are directing U.S. Customs and Border Protection (“CBP”) to suspend liquidation of all entries of silicomanganese from Australia as described in the scope of the investigation section entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after the date of publication of this notice in the Federal Register.

    Pursuant to section 733(d)(1)(B) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.205(d), we will instruct CBP to require a cash deposit equal to the weighted-average amount by which the NV exceeds CEP as indicated in the chart above.7 These suspension of liquidation instructions will remain in effect until further notice.

    7See Modification of Regulations Regarding the Practice of Accepting Bonds During the Provisional Measures Period in Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Investigations, 76 FR 61042 (October 3, 2011).

    International Trade Commission (“ITC”) Notification

    In accordance with section 733(f) of the Act, we will notify the ITC of our preliminary affirmative determination of sales at LTFV. Because the preliminary determination in this proceeding is affirmative, section 735(b)(2) of the Act requires that the ITC make its final determination as to whether the domestic industry in the United States is materially injured, or threatened with material injury, by reason of imports of silicomanganese from Australia before the later of 120 days after the date of this preliminary determination or 45 days after our final determination. Because we are postponing the deadline for our final determination to 135 days from the date of publication of this preliminary determination, as discussed above, the ITC will make its final determination no later than 45 days after our final determination.

    This determination is issued and published in accordance with sections 733(f) and 777(i)(1) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.205(c).

    Dated: September 17, 2015. Ronald K. Lorentzen, Acting Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance. Appendix I—List of Topics Discussed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum 1. Summary 2. Background 3. Period of Investigation 4. Postponement of Preliminary Determination 5. Postponement of Final Determination and Extension of Provisional Measures 6. Scope of the Investigation 7. Scope Comments 8. Discussion of Methodology Fair Value Comparisons A. Determination of Comparison Method B. Results of the Differential Pricing Analysis 9. Product Comparisons 10. Date of Sale 11. Constructed Export Price 12. Normal Value A. Comparison Market Viability B. Affiliated Party Transactions and Arm's-Length Test C. Level of Trade D. Cost of Production (COP) a. Calculation of COP b. Test of Comparison Market Sales Prices c. Results of the COP Test E. Calculation of Normal Value Based on Comparison Market Prices F. Calculation of Normal Value Based on CV 13. Currency Conversion 14. U.S. International Trade Commission Notification 15. Disclosure and Public Comments 16. Verification 17. Conclusion
    [FR Doc. 2015-24449 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-570-943] Certain Oil Country Tubular Goods From the People's Republic of China; Notice of Court Decision Not in Harmony With Final Results of Administrative Review and Notice of Amended Final Results of Administrative Review Pursuant to Court Decision AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    On August 28, 2015, the United States Court of International Trade (“CIT”) issued its final judgment 1 sustaining the Department of Commerce's (the “Department”) redetermination 2 issued pursuant to the CIT's remand order in American Tubular Products, LLC v. United States, Ct. No. 13-00029, Slip Op. 14-116 (CIT September 26, 2014) (“Remand Order”), with respect to the Department's amended final results 3 of the 2010-2011 antidumping duty administrative review of certain oil country tubular goods (“OCTG”) from the People's Republic of China. Consistent with the decision of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (“CAFC”) in Timken Co. v. United States, 893 F.2d 337 (Fed. Cir. 1990) (“Timken”), as clarified by Diamond Sawblades Mfrs. Coalition v. United States, 626 F.3d 1374 (Fed. Cir. 2010) (“Diamond Sawblades”), the Department is notifying the public that the final judgment in this case is not in harmony with the Department's amended final results of review and is amending the AR 1 Final Results with respect to the margin determined for Jiangsu Chengde Steel Tube Share Co., Ltd. (“Chengde”), an exporter and producer of subject merchandise.

    1See American Tubular Products., LLC v. United States, Court No. 13-00029, Slip Op. 15-98 (CIT August 28, 2015) (“ATP”).

    2See Final Results of Redetermination Pursuant to Court Remand, American Tubular Products, LLC v. United States, Court No. 13-00029 (January 28, 2015) (“Remand Redetermination”).

    3See Certain Oil Country Tubular Goods From the People's Republic of China: Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2010-2011, 77 FR 74644 (December 17, 2012), as amended by, Certain Oil Country Tubular Goods From the People's Republic of China: Amended Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2010-2011, 78 FR 9033 (February 7, 2013) (collectively, “AR 1 Final Results”).

    DATES:

    Effective Date: September 7, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Paul Stolz, Office III, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-4474.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Subsequent to the publication of the AR 1 Final Results, Chengde filed a complaint with the CIT challenging aspects of the methodology used to determine its margin in the AR 1 Final Results.

    On September 26, 2014, the CIT issued the Remand Order, instructing the Department to re-visit its decision to value most of Chengde's billet as alloy steel in the underlying review. Specifically with respect to Chengde's billets, the Court instructed the Department to: (1) Reevaluate the chemical composition of OCTG sold in certain contracts, (2) explain whether Chengde's mill test certificates prove the chemical properties of OCTG not specifically covered by those certificates, (3) assess whether Chengde's entry summary as provided in American Tubular Products, LLC's application to receive information under administrative protective order proves that the OCTG in one contract was comprised of carbon steel, and (4) recalculate the percentage of Chengde's steel billets that were alloy steel or carbon steel in accordance with this analysis.4 In addition, at the Department's request, the CIT remanded the additional issue of the surrogate value used to value carbon steel billets to reconsider whether it is aberrational.5

    4See Remand Order at 14.

    5Id. at 16-17.

    On January 28, 2015, the Department issued its Remand Redetermination. Consistent with the CIT's instructions in the Remand Order, the Department recalculated the total quantity of carbon steel billets consumed by Chengde to produce subject merchandise during the period of review and explained why the surrogate value used for carbon steel billets in the AR 1 Final Results was not aberrational.6

    6See Remand Redetermination at 2.

    On August 28, 2015, the CIT issued its decision in ATP, in which it sustained the Remand Redetermination, finding that the Department's decision to use an alloy-carbon average as a surrogate for some of Chengde's billet inputs and reliance on Indonesian import data to value high carbon steel was supported by substantial evidence.7

    7See ATP at 11-21.

    Timken Notice

    In its decision in Timken, 893 F.2d at 341, as clarified by Diamond Sawblades, the CAFC held that, pursuant to section 516A(e) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (“the Act”), the Department must publish a notice of a court decision that is not “in harmony” with a Department determination and must suspend liquidation of entries pending a “conclusive” court decision. The CIT's August 28, 2015, judgment in this case constitutes a final decision of that court that is not in harmony with the Department's AR 1 Final Results. This notice is published in fulfillment of the publication requirements of Timken.

    Amended Final Results

    Because there is now a final court decision with respect to this case, the Department is amending the AR 1 Final Results with respect to Chengde's weighted-average dumping margin, effective September 7, 2015. The revised dumping margin is as follows:

    Exporter Percent margin Jiangsu Chengde Steel Tube Share Co., Ltd. 137.62 The Department will continue the suspension of liquidation of the entries at issue pending expiration of the period of appeal or, if appealed, pending a final and conclusive court decision. In the event the CIT's ruling is not appealed or, if appealed, upheld by the CAFC, the Department will instruct U.S. Customs and Border Protection (“CBP”) to liquidate entries of subject merchandise based on the revised assessment rates calculated by the Department. Cash Deposit Requirements

    Since the AR1 Final Results, the Department has not established a new cash deposit rate for Chengde. As a result, in accordance with section 751(a)(1) of the Act, the Department will instruct CBP to collect a cash deposit of 137.62 percent for entries of subject merchandise exported by Chengde, effective September 7, 2015.

    Notification to Interested Parties

    This notice is issued and published in accordance with sections 516A(e), 751(a)(1), and 777(i)(1) of the Act.

    Dated: September 17, 2015. Ronald K. Lorentzen, Acting Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24327 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XE207 Fisheries of the South Atlantic; South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (SAFMC); Public Meeting AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice of a public meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold a Visioning Workshop in Charleston, SC.

    DATES:

    The Workshop will be held 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Wednesday, October 14, 2015; and 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday, October 15, 2015. Public comment will be held at 4:30 p.m., Wednesday, October 14, 2015; and at 1:30 p.m., Thursday October 15, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Meeting address: Town & Country Inn, 2008 Savannah Highway, Charleston, SC 29507; phone: (843) 571-1000.

    Council address: South Atlantic Fishery Management Council, 4055 Faber Place Drive, Suite 201, N. Charleston, SC 29405.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Kim Iverson, Public Information Officer, 4055 Faber Place Drive, Suite 201, North Charleston, SC 29405; phone: (843) 571-4366 or toll free (866) SAFMC-10; fax: (843) 769-4520; email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This workshop is being held for Council members to discuss the further development of a Vision Blueprint (long-term strategic plan) for the South Atlantic snapper grouper fishery. The outcome of the workshop will consist of a Vision Blueprint document outlining strategic goals, objectives, and strategies for managing the snapper grouper fishery going forward. The document will be provided to the Council at the December 2015 Council meeting and is scheduled for approval. Additionally, the Council will discuss an implementation and evaluation plan for periodic review of the Vision Blueprint. Topics of discussion include:

    1. Final review and discussion of 2015 public input on the draft Vision Blueprint.

    2. Breakout Group Discussion to prioritize short-, mid-, and long-term strategies to be considered under each of the four focus areas (Science, Management, Communication, and Governance) to include:

    a. Sub-regional Management

    b. Reporting/Data Collection

    c. Reducing Discards

    d. Access to the Fishery

    e. Stakeholder Engagement

    f. Habitat/Ecosystems

    g. Allocation

    3. Plenary session to summarize breakout group discussions, and

    4. Facilitated discussion for developing an evaluation plan for periodic review of the Vision Blueprint.

    Special Accommodations

    This meeting is accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for auxiliary aids should be directed to the SAFMC office (see ADDRESSES) at least 5 business days prior to the meeting.

    Note:

    The times and sequence specified in this agenda are subject to change.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: September 22, 2015. Tracey L. Thompson, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24435 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Western Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice of a public meeting and hearing.

    SUMMARY:

    The Western Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold a meeting of its Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) Mariana Archipelago Fishery Ecosystem Plan (FEP) Advisory Panel (AP) and Hawaii Archipelago FEP AP to discuss and make recommendations on fishery management issues in the Western Pacific Region.

    DATES:

    The CNMI Mariana Archipelago FEP AP will meet on Wednesday, October 14, 2015, between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. and the Hawaii Archipelago FEP AP will meet on Thursday, October 15, 2015, between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. All times listed are local island times. For specific times and agendas, see SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.

    ADDRESSES:

    The CNMI Mariana Archipelago FEP AP will meet at the Micronesian Environmental Services Office on Middle Road in Garapan, Saipan, CNMI. The Hawaii Archipelago FEP AP will meet at the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council Office, 1164 Bishop St., Suite 1400, Honolulu, HI 96813 and by teleconference. The teleconference will be conducted by telephone and by Web. The teleconference numbers are: U.S. toll-free: 1-888-482-3560 or International Access: +1 647 723-3959, and Access Code: 5228220; The webconference can be accessed at https://wprfmc.webex.com/join/info.wpcouncilnoaa.gov

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Kitty M. Simonds, Executive Director, Western Pacific Fishery Management Council; telephone: (808) 522-8220.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Public comment periods will be provided in the agenda. The order in which agenda items are addressed may change. The meetings will run as late as necessary to complete scheduled business.

    Schedule and Agenda for the CNMI Mariana Archipelago FEP AP Meeting Wednesday, October 14, 2015, 6 p.m.-8 p.m. 1. Welcome and Introductions 2. Review and Approval of the Agenda 3. Issues to be discussed at 164th Council Meeting A. Upcoming Council Action Items i. Specification of Territorial Bottomfish Annual Catch Limits (ACLs) ii. 2016 Territorial Bigeye Tuna Catch Limit Specifications iii. Council review of Mariana FEP and Proposed Changes B. Mariana Archipelago FEP-CNMI Community Activities 4. Mariana Archipelago FEP-CNMI Issues A. Report of the Subpanels i. Island Fisheries Subpanel ii. Pelagic Fisheries Subpanel iii. Ecosystems and Habitat Subpanel iv. Indigenous Fishing Rights Subpanel B. Other Issues 5. Public Hearing 6. Discussion and Recommendations 7. Other Business Schedule and Agenda for the Hawaii Archipelago FEP AP Meeting Thursday, October 15, 2015, 9 a.m.-11 a.m. 1. Welcome and Introductions 2. Review and Approval of the Agenda 3. Issues to be discussed at 164th Council Meeting A. Upcoming Council Action Items i. 2016 Territorial Bigeye Tuna Catch Limit Specifications ii. Council review of Hawaii FEP and Proposed Changes B. Hawaii Archipelago FEP Community Activities 4. Hawaii Archipelago FEP Issues A. Subpanel Groups Community Fishery Issues i. Island Fisheries Subpanel ii. Pelagic Fisheries Subpanel iii. Ecosystems and Habitat Subpanel iv. Indigenous Fishing Rights Subpanel B. Other Issues 5. Public Hearing 6. Discussion and Recommendations 7. Other Business Special Accommodations

    These meetings are physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to Kitty M. Simonds, (808) 522-8220 (voice) or (808) 522-8226 (fax), at least 5 days prior to the meeting date.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: September 22, 2015. Tracey L. Thompson, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24436 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    COMMITTEE FOR THE IMPLEMENTATION OF TEXTILE AGREEMENTS Limitations of Duty- and Quota-Free Imports of Apparel Articles Assembled in Beneficiary Sub-Saharan African Countries From Regional and Third-Country Fabric AGENCY:

    Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements (CITA).

    ACTION:

    Publishing the New 12-Month Cap on Duty- and Quota-Free Benefits.

    DATE:

    Effective Date: October 1, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Don Niewiaroski, Jr., International Trade Specialist, Office of Textiles and Apparel, U.S. Department of Commerce, (202) 482-2496.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Authority:

    Title I, Section 112(b)(3) of the Trade and Development Act of 2000 (TDA 2000), Public Law (Pub. L.) 106-200, as amended by Division B, Title XXI, section 3108 of the Trade Act of 2002, Pub. L. 107-210; Section 7(b)(2) of the AGOA Acceleration Act of 2004, Pub. L. 108-274; Division D, Title VI, section 6002 of the Tax Relief and Health Care Act of 2006 (TRHCA 2006), Pub. L. 109-432, and section 1 of The African Growth and Opportunity Amendments (Pub. L. 112-163), August 10, 2012; Presidential Proclamation 7350 of October 2, 2000 (65 FR 59321); Presidential Proclamation 7626 of November 13, 2002 (67 FR 69459); and Title I, Section 103(b)(2) and (3) of the Trade Preferences Extension Act of 2015, Pub. L. 114-27, June 29, 2015.

    Title I of TDA 2000 provides for duty- and quota-free treatment for certain textile and apparel articles imported from designated beneficiary sub-Saharan African countries. Section 112(b)(3) of TDA 2000 provides duty- and quota-free treatment for apparel articles wholly assembled in one or more beneficiary sub-Saharan African countries from fabric wholly formed in one or more beneficiary sub-Saharan African countries from yarn originating in the United States or one or more beneficiary sub-Saharan African countries. This preferential treatment is also available for apparel articles assembled in one or more lesser-developed beneficiary sub-Saharan African countries, regardless of the country of origin of the fabric used to make such articles, subject to quantitative limitation. Public Law 114-27 extended this special rule for lesser-developed countries through September 30, 2025.

    The AGOA Acceleration Act of 2004 provides that the quantitative limitation for the twelve-month period beginning October 1, 2015 will be an amount not to exceed 7 percent of the aggregate square meter equivalents of all apparel articles imported into the United States in the preceding 12-month period for which data are available. See Section 112(b)(3)(A)(ii)(I) of TDA 2000, as amended by Section 7(b)(2)(B) of the AGOA Acceleration Act of 2004. Of this overall amount, apparel imported under the special rule for lesser-developed countries is limited to an amount not to exceed 3.5 percent of all apparel articles imported into the United States in the preceding 12-month period. See Section 112(b)(3)(B)(ii)(II) of TDA 2000, as amended by Section 6002(a)(3) of TRHCA 2006. The Annex to Presidential Proclamation 7350 of October 2, 2000 directed CITA to publish the aggregate quantity of imports allowed during each 12-month period in the Federal Register.

    For the one-year period, beginning on October 1, 2015, and extending through September 30, 2016, the aggregate quantity of imports eligible for preferential treatment under these provisions is 1,935,096,830 square meters equivalent. Of this amount, 967,548,415 square meters equivalent is available to apparel articles imported under the special rule for lesser-developed countries. Apparel articles entered in excess of these quantities will be subject to otherwise applicable tariffs.

    These quantities are calculated using the aggregate square meter equivalents of all apparel articles imported into the United States, derived from the set of Harmonized System lines listed in the Annex to the World Trade Organization Agreement on Textiles and Clothing (ATC), and the conversion factors for units of measure into square meter equivalents used by the United States in implementing the ATC.

    Joshua Teitelbaum, Chairman, Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24399 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DR-P
    COMMITTEE FOR PURCHASE FROM PEOPLE WHO ARE BLIND OR SEVERELY DISABLED Procurement List; Proposed Addition AGENCY:

    Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled.

    ACTION:

    Proposed Addition to the Procurement List.

    SUMMARY:

    The Committee is proposing to add a service to the Procurement List that will be provided by a nonprofit agency employing persons who are blind or have other severe disabilities.

    Comments Must be Received on or Before: 10/26/2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled, 1401 S. Clark Street, Suite 715, Arlington, Virginia, 22202-4149.

    For Further Information or to Submit Comments Contact: Barry S. Lineback, Telephone: (703) 603-7740, Fax: (703) 603-0655, or email [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This notice is published pursuant to 41 U.S.C. 8503(a)(2) and 41 CFR 51-2.3. Its purpose is to provide interested persons an opportunity to submit comments on the proposed actions.

    Addition

    If the Committee approves the proposed addition, the entities of the Federal Government identified in this notice will be required to procure the service listed below from the nonprofit agency employing persons who are blind or have other severe disabilities.

    The following service is proposed for addition to the Procurement List for production by the nonprofit agency listed:

    Service Service Type: Custodial and Related Service. Service Is Mandatory for: GSA PBS Region 4, Benjamin P. Grogan and Jerry L. Dove Federal Building, 2030 SW. 145th Avenue, Miramar, FL Mandatory Source(s) of Supply: CW Resources, Inc., New Britain, CT. Contracting Activity: General Services Administration, Public Buildings Service, Acquisition Division/Services Branch, Atlanta, GA. Barry S. Lineback, Director, Business Operations.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24387 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6353-01-P
    COMMITTEE FOR PURCHASE FROM PEOPLE WHO ARE BLIND OR SEVERELY DISABLED Procurement List; Additions and Deletions AGENCY:

    Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled.

    ACTION:

    Additions to and Deletion from the Procurement List.

    SUMMARY:

    This action adds products to the Procurement List that will be furnished by nonprofit agency employing persons who are blind or have other severe disabilities, and deletes a product from the Procurement List previously furnished by such agency.

    DATES:

    Effective Date: 10/26/2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled, 1401 S. Clark Street, Suite 715, Arlington, Virginia, 22202-4149.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Barry S. Lineback, Telephone: (703) 603-7740, Fax: (703) 603-0655, or email [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Additions

    On 6/19/2015 (80 FR 35320-35321), the Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled published notice of proposed additions to the Procurement List.

    After consideration of the material presented to it concerning capability of qualified nonprofit agency to provide the products and impact of the additions on the current or most recent contractors, the Committee has determined that the products listed below are suitable for procurement by the Federal Government under 41 U.S.C. 8501-8506 and 41 CFR 51-2.4.

    Regulatory Flexibility Act Certification

    I certify that the following action will not have a significant impact on a substantial number of small entities. The major factors considered for this certification were:

    1. The action will not result in any additional reporting, recordkeeping or other compliance requirements for small entities other than the small organization that will furnish the products to the Government.

    2. The action will result in authorizing small entity to furnish the products to the Government.

    3. There are no known regulatory alternatives which would accomplish the objectives of the Javits-Wagner-O'Day Act (41 U.S.C. 8501-8506) in connection with the products proposed for addition to the Procurement List.

    End of Certification

    Accordingly, the following products are added to the Procurement List:

    Products NSN(s)—Product Name(s): 7045-00-NIB-0416—Privacy Shield, 16:9 Aspect Ratio Computer Monitor, 23.0″ Widescreen 7045-00-NIB-0417—Privacy Filter, Framed, Black, 20.0″ Widescreen Mandatory Purchase For: Total Government Requirement Mandatory Source(s) of Supply: Wiscraft, Inc., Milwaukee, WI Contracting Activity: General Services Administration, New York, NY Distribution: A-List Deletion

    On 8/21/2015 (80 FR 50825-50826), the Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled published notice of proposed deletions from the Procurement List.

    After consideration of the relevant matter presented, the Committee has determined that the product listed below is no longer suitable for procurement by the Federal Government under 41 U.S.C. 8501-8506 and 41 CFR 51-2.4.

    Regulatory Flexibility Act Certification

    I certify that the following action will not have a significant impact on a substantial number of small entities. The major factors considered for this certification were:

    1. The action will not result in additional reporting, recordkeeping or other compliance requirements for small entities.

    2. The action may result in authorizing small entity to furnish the product to the Government.

    3. There are no known regulatory alternatives which would accomplish the objectives of the Javits-Wagner-O'Day Act (41 U.S.C. 8501-8506) in connection with the product deleted from the Procurement List.

    End of Certification

    Accordingly, the following product is deleted from the Procurement List:

    Product NSN(s)—Product Name(s): 7520-01-439-3392—Desk Set, Liberty Mandatory Source of Supply: Industries for the Blind, Inc., West Allis, WI Contracting Activity: General Services Administration, New York, NY Barry S. Lineback, Director, Business Operations.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24388 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6353-01-P
    BUREAU OF CONSUMER FINANCIAL PROTECTION [Docket No: CFPB-2015-0041] Agency Information Collection Activities: Comment Request AGENCY:

    Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection.

    ACTION:

    Notice and request for comment.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (Bureau) is requesting to renew the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approval for renewal of an existing information collection titled, “Generic Information Collection Plan for the Development and/or Testing of Model Forms, Disclosures, Tools, and Other Similar Related Materials.”

    DATES:

    Written comments are encouraged and must be received on or before November 24, 2015 to be assured of consideration.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, identified by the title of the information collection, OMB Control Number (see below), and docket number (see above), by any of the following methods:

    • Electronic: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

    • Mail: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (Attention: PRA Office), 1700 G Street NW., Washington, DC 20552.

    • Hand Delivery/Courier: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (Attention: PRA Office), 1275 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20002.

    Please note that comments submitted after the comment period will not be accepted. In general, all comments received will become public records, including any personal information provided. Sensitive personal information, such as account numbers or Social Security numbers, should not be included.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Documentation prepared in support of this information collection request is available at www.regulations.gov. Requests for additional information should be directed to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, (Attention: PRA Office), 1700 G Street NW., Washington, DC 20552, (202) 435-9575, or email: [email protected].

    Please do not submit comments to this mailbox.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title of Collection: Generic Information Collection Plan for the Development and/or Testing of Model Forms, Disclosures, Tools, and Other Similar Related Materials.

    OMB Control Number: 3170-0022.

    Type of Review: Extension with change of a currently approved collection.

    Affected Public: Individuals or households.

    Estimated Number of Respondents: 21,000.

    Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 8,925.

    Abstract: This is a request to renew OMB's approval for a generic information collection plan that allows the Bureau to conduct qualitative testing of disclosures and related materials relating to the features of consumer financial products and services. The research will result in recommendations for the development of and revisions to such disclosures and related materials. The research activities may be conducted by the Bureau or external parties such as, for example, contractors retained by the Bureau, and will employ cognitive psychological testing methods. This approach has been demonstrated to be feasible and valuable by the Bureau and other agencies in developing disclosures and related materials. The planned research activities will be conducted with the goal of creating effective disclosures and related materials that will help consumers understand the features of consumer financial products and services.

    Request for Comments: Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Bureau, including whether the information will have practical utility; (b) The accuracy of the Bureau's estimate of the burden of the collection of information, including the validity of the methods and the assumptions used; (c) Ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) Ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized and/or included in the request for OMB approval. All comments will become a matter of public record.

    Dated: September 21, 2015. Linda F. Powell, Chief Data Officer, Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24341 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4810-AM-P
    DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Department of the Army Army Education Advisory Subcommittee Meeting Notice AGENCY:

    Department of the Army, DoD.

    ACTION:

    Notice of open subcommittee meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of the Army is publishing this notice to announce the following Federal advisory committee meeting of the U.S. Army War College Board of Visitors, a subcommittee of the Army Education Advisory Committee. This meeting is open to the public.

    DATES:

    The U.S. Army War College Board of Visitors Subcommittee will meet from 8:15 a.m. to 1:45 p.m. on November 6, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    U.S. Army War College, 122 Forbes Avenue, Carlisle, PA, Command Conference Room, Root Hall, Carlisle Barracks, PA 17013.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Mr. Michael T. Martin, the Alternate Designated Federal Officer for the subcommittee, in writing at G3/Department of Academic Operations, 315 Lovell Avenue, Carlisle, PA 17013, by email at [email protected], or by telephone at (717) 961-2038.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The subcommittee meeting is being held 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.

    Purpose of the Meeting: The purpose of the meeting is to provide the subcommittee with an overview of the U.S. Army War College Academic Campaign Plan and, academic year 16 curriculum, discuss Middle States and JPME II accreditation, and address other administrative matters.

    Proposed Agenda: The subcommittee will review and evaluate information related to the continued academic growth, accreditation, and development of the U.S. Army War College. General deliberations leading to provisional findings will be referred to the Army Education Advisory Committee for deliberation by the Committee under the open-meeting rules.

    Public Accessibility to the Meeting: 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, this meeting is open to the public. Seating is on a first to arrive basis. Attendees are requested to submit their name, affiliation, and daytime phone number seven business days prior to the meeting to Michael Martin via electronic mail, the preferred mode of submission, at the address listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section. Members of the public attending the subcommittee meeting will not be permitted to present questions from the floor or speak to any issue under consideration by the subcommittee. Because the meeting of the subcommittee will be held in a Federal Government facility on a military base, security screening is required. A photo ID is required to enter base. Please note that security and gate guards have the right to inspect vehicles and persons seeking to enter and exit the installation. Root Hall is fully handicap accessible. Wheelchair access is available in front at the main entrance of the building. For additional information about public access procedures, contact Michael Martin, the subcommittee's Alternate Designated Federal Officer, at the email address or telephone number listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section.

    Written Comments or Statements: Pursuant to 41 CFR 102-3.105(j) and 102-3.140 and section 10(a)(3) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, the public or interested organizations may submit written comments or statements to the subcommittee, in response to the stated agenda of the open meeting or in regard to the subcommittee's mission in general. Written comments or statements should be submitted to Michael Martin, the subcommittee Alternate Designated Federal Officer, via electronic mail, the preferred mode of submission, at the address listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section. Each page of the comment or statement must include the author's name, title or affiliation, address, and daytime phone number. The Alternate Designated Federal Officer will review all submitted written comments or statements and provide them to members of the subcommittee for their consideration. Written comments or statements being submitted in response to the agenda set forth in this notice must be received by the Alternate Designated Federal Officer at least seven business days prior to the meeting to be considered by the subcommittee. Written comments or statements received after this date may not be provided to the subcommittee until its next meeting. The Alternate Designated Federal Officer will review all comments timely submitted with the subcommittee Chairperson, and ensure the comments are provided to all members of the subcommittee before the meeting. After reviewing any written comments submitted, the subcommittee Chairperson and the Alternate Designated Federal Officer may choose to invite certain submitters to present their comments verbally during the open portion of this meeting or at a future meeting. The Alternate Designated Federal Officer, in consultation with the subcommittee Chairperson, may allot a specific amount of time for submitters to present their comments verbally.

    Brenda S. Bowen, Army Federal Register Liaison Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24269 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
    DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Department of the Army Notice of Intent To Grant Exclusive Patent License to Applied Materials; Austin, TX AGENCY:

    Department of the Army, DoD.

    ACTION:

    Notice of intent.

    SUMMARY:

    In compliance with 35 U.S.C. 209(e) and 37 CFR 404.7(a)(1)(i), the Department of the Army hereby gives notice of its intent to grant to Applied Materials; a corporation having its principle place of business at 10000 Spectrum Drive, Austin, TX 78717, exclusive license in the field of semiconductor technology applications relative to the following:

    • U.S. Patent Number 8,866,367 entitled “Thermally oxidized seed layers for the production of {001} textured electrodes and PZT devices and method of making”, Inventors Fox et al, Issue date October 21, 2014.

    • U.S. Patent Number 8,966,993 entitled “Three Dimensional Piezoelectric MEMS”, Inventors Pulskamp et al, Issue date March 3, 2015.

    • U.S. Patent Application Number 14/0219,028 entitled “Stylo-Epitaxial Piezoelectric and Ferroelectric Devices and Method of Manufacturing”, Inventors Fox et al, Filing Date March 19, 2014.

    DATES:

    The prospective exclusive license may be granted unless within fifteen (15) days from the date of this published notice, the U.S. Army Research Laboratory receives written objections including evidence and argument that establish that the grant of the license would not be consistent with the requirements of 35 U.S.C. 209 and 37 CFR 404.7. Competing applications completed and received by the U.S. Army Research Laboratory within fifteen (15) days from the date of this published notice will also be treated as objections to the grant of the contemplated exclusive license.

    Objections submitted in response to this notice will not be made available to the public for inspection and, to the extent permitted by law, will not be released under the Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S.C. 552.

    ADDRESSES:

    Send written objections to U.S. Army Research Laboratory Technology Transfer Office, RDRL-DPP/Thomas Mulkern, Building 321 Room 110, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD 21005-5425.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Thomas Mulkern, (410) 278-0889, email: [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    None.

    Brenda S. Bowen, Army Federal Register Liaison Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24267 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3710-08-P
    DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Office of the Secretary [Docket ID: DoD-2015-OS-0053] Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Defense has submitted to OMB for clearance, the following proposal for collection of information under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act.

    DATES:

    Consideration will be given to all comments received by October 26, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Fred Licari, 571-372-0493.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title, Associated Form and OMB Number: Procurement Technical Assistance Center Cooperative Agreement Performance Report; DLA Form 1806; OMB Control Number 0704-0320.

    Type of Request: Extension.

    Number of Respondents: 95.

    Responses per Respondent: 4.

    Annual Responses: 380.

    Average Burden per Response: 7 hours.

    Annual Burden Hours: 2660.

    Needs and Uses: The information collection requirement is necessary as the Defense Logistics Agency uses the report as the principal instrument for measuring the performance of Cooperative Agreement awards made under 10 U.S.S chapter 142.

    Affected Public: Not-for-profit institutions; state, local or tribal government; individuals or households.

    Frequency: Quarterly.

    Respondent's Obligation: Required to obtain or retain benefits.

    OMB Desk Officer: Ms. Jasmeet Seehra.

    Comments and recommendations on the proposed information collection should be emailed to Ms. Jasmeet Seehra, DoD Desk Officer, at [email protected] Please identify the proposed information collection by DoD Desk Officer and the Docket ID number and title of the information collection.

    You may also submit comments and recommendations, identified by Docket ID number and title, by the following method:

    • Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

    Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name, Docket ID 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.

    DOD Clearance Officer: Mr. Frederick Licari.

    Written requests for copies of the information collection proposal should be sent to Mr. Licari at WHS/ESD Directives Division, 4800 Mark Center Drive, East Tower, Suite 02G09, Alexandria, VA 22350-3100.

    Dated: September 22, 2015. Aaron Siegel, Alternate OSD Federal Register Liaison Officer, Department of Defense.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24404 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 5001-06-P
    DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Office of the Secretary [Docket ID: DoD-2015-OS-0076] Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Defense has submitted to OMB for clearance, the following proposal for collection of information under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act.

    DATES:

    Consideration will be given to all comments received by October 26, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Fred Licari, 571-372-0493.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title, Associated Form and OMB Number: Defense Sexual Assault Incident Database; OMB Control Number 0704-0482.

    Type of Request: Extension.

    Number of Respondents: 3200.

    Responses per Respondent: 1.

    Annual Responses: 3200.

    Average Burden per Response: 60 minutes.

    Annual Burden Hours: 3200 hours.

    Needs and Uses: Section 563 of Public Law (Pub. L.) 110-417, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year (FY) 2009, directs the Secretary of Defense to implement a centralized case-level database for the collection and maintenance of information regarding sexual assaults involving members of the Armed Forces, including information, if available, about the nature of the assault, victim, offender, and case outcomes in connection with the assault.

    Affected Public: Individuals or households.

    Frequency: On occasion.

    Respondent's Obligation: Voluntary.

    OMB Desk Officer: Ms. Jasmeet Seehra.

    Comments and recommendations on the proposed information collection should be emailed to Ms. Jasmeet Seehra, DoD Desk Officer, at [email protected] Please identify the proposed information collection by DoD Desk Officer and the Docket ID number and title of the information collection.

    You may also submit comments and recommendations, identified by Docket ID number and title, by the following method:

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

    Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name, Docket ID 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.

    DOD Clearance Officer: Mr. Frederick Licari.

    Written requests for copies of the information collection proposal should be sent to Mr. Licari at WHS/ESD Directives Division, 4800 Mark Center Drive, East Tower, Suite 02G09, Alexandria, VA 22350-3100.

    Dated: September 22, 2015. Aaron Siegel, Alternate OSD Federal Register Liaison Officer, Department of Defense.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24396 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 5001-06-P
    DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Department of the Army; Corps of Engineers Availability of a Final Integrated Feasibility Report (Feasibility Study/Environmental Impact Statement/Environmental Impact Report), Los Angeles River Ecosystem Restoration Study, City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, CA AGENCY:

    Department of the Army, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, DoD.

    ACTION:

    Notice of Availability.

    SUMMARY:

    The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) in conjunction with the City of Los Angeles (City) announces the availability of a Final Integrated Feasibility Report (IFR), which includes a Final Feasibility Study (FS) and Environmental Impact Statement/Environmental Impact Report (EIS/EIR) for the Los Angeles River Ecosystem Restoration Study, Los Angeles County, CA, for public review and comment. The study evaluates alternatives for the purpose of restoring 11 miles of the Los Angeles River from approximately Griffith Park to downtown Los Angeles while maintaining existing levels of flood risk management. Restoration measures include creation and re-establishment of historic riparian and freshwater marsh habitat to support increased populations of wildlife and enhance habitat connectivity within the study area, as well as to provide opportunities for regional connectivity to ecological zones such as the Santa Monica Mountains, Verdugo Hills, Elysian Hills, and San Gabriel Mountains. Restoration also includes the re-introduction of ecological and fluvial processes through a more natural hydrologic regime, which reconnects the river to historic floodplains and tributaries, reduces flow velocities, increases infiltration, and improves natural sediment processes. The study also evaluates opportunities for passive recreation that is compatible with the restored environment. The study evaluated the No Action Alternative and five action alternatives, named Alternative 10, 13, 13v, 16, and 20. The recommended plan for restoration in the study area is Alternative 20, the locally preferred plan (LPP), which includes compatible recreation features. The recommended plan includes restoration of habitat within 719 acres of the study area through the following measures and features: riparian habitat corridor restoration throughout the 11 miles; restoration of the Arroyo Seco confluence; restoration of the Verdugo Wash confluence; restoration of riparian habitat, a historic wash and its braided channels in the Los Angeles Trailer and Container (LATC) intermodal facility site; removal of channel concrete and riverbed restoration for 0.75 miles; restoration of freshwater marsh in the Los Angeles State Historic Park; restoration of riparian habitat and reconnection to the historic floodplain in Taylor Yard; river widening in 2 reaches; restoration of 13 minor tributaries through stream daylighting; establishment of side channels; and removal of invasive vegetation throughout the project area. A Notice of Intent for the EIS/EIR was published on November 28, 2008 (73 FR 72455). A Notice of Availability for the Draft IFR was published on October 4, 2013 (78 FR 57624). The public review period for the Draft IFR occurred from September 20, 2013 to November 18, 2013.

    DATES:

    The Final IFR is available for a 30-day review period from September 25, 2015 through October 24, 2015 pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). Written comments pursuant to the NEPA will be accepted until the close of public review at close of business on October 24, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Questions or comments concerning the Final IFR may be directed to: Headquarters, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Attn: CECW-P (SA), 7701 Telegraph Road, Alexandria, VA 22315-3860.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ms. Eileen Takata, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Los Angeles District, [email protected] OR Ms. Erin Jones, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Los Angeles District, [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The document is available for review at:

    (1) Online: http://www.spl.usace.army.mil/Missions/CivilWorks/ProjectsStudies/LosAngelesRiverEcosystemRestoration.aspx.

    (2) Arroyo Seco Regional Branch Library; 6145 N. Figueroa Street, Los Angeles, CA 90042; CD and Hard Copy.

    (3) Los Angeles Central Library; 630 W 5th Street Los Angeles, CA 90071; CD and Hard Copy.

    (4) Atwater Village Branch Library; 3379 Glendale Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90039; CD and Hard Copy.

    (5) Cypress Park Branch Library; 1150 Cypress Avenue, Los Angeles CA 90065; CD.

    (6) Lincoln Heights Branch Library; 2530 Workman Street, Los Angeles, CA 90031; CD.

    (7) Chinatown Branch Library; 639 N. Hill Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012; CD.

    (8) Little Tokyo Branch Library; 203 S. Los Angeles Street, Los Angeles CA 90012; CD.

    (9) Benjamin Franklin Branch Library; 2200 E. First Street, Los Angeles, CA 90033; CD.

    Kirk E. Gibbs, Colonel, U.S. Army, Commander and District Engineer.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24273 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3720-58-P
    DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION [Docket No.: ED-2015-ICCD-0113] Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment Request; TEACH Grant: Study of Institutional Practices and Grant Recipient Outcomes and Experiences AGENCY:

    Office of Planning, Evaluation and Policy Development (OPEPD), 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 new information collection.

    DATES:

    Interested persons are invited to submit comments on or before November 24, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    To access and review all the documents related to the information collection listed in this notice, please use http://www.regulations.gov by searching the Docket ID number ED-2015-ICCD-0113. 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 2E105, Washington, DC 20202-4537.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For specific questions related to collection activities, please contact Brian Fu 202-260-1467 and Joanne Bogart 202-205-7855.

    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: TEACH Grant: Study of Institutional Practices and Grant Recipient Outcomes and Experiences.

    OMB Control Number: 1875-NEW.

    Type of Review: A new information collection.

    Respondents/Affected Public: Institutions of higher education (IHEs) and individuals.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Responses: 565.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Burden Hours: 283.

    Abstract: The U.S. Department of Education (Department) requests OMB clearance for a survey of a purposively selected sample of 65 institutions of higher education, and a sample of 500 randomly selected grant recipients participating in the TEACH Grant program. The surveys will inform a study addressing issues and challenges regarding the implementation of TEACH Grants, which is being conducted in response to a GAO audit addressing the high grant to loan conversion rate among TEACH grant recipients.

    Dated: September 21, 2015. Stephanie Valentine, Acting Director, Information Collection Clearance Division, Office of the Chief Privacy Officer, Office of Management.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24326 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Energy Information Administration Agency Information Collection Extension AGENCY:

    U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), Department of Energy.

    ACTION:

    Notice and request for OMB review and comment.

    SUMMARY:

    The EIA has submitted an information collection request to the OMB for extension under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. The information collection requests a three-year extension, without change, of its Form EIA-886, Annual Survey of Alternative Fuel Vehicles, OMB Control Number 1905-0191. The proposed collection will gather information on the number and type of alternative fueled vehicles (AFVs) and other advanced technology vehicles that vehicle suppliers made available in the previous calendar year and plan to make available in the following calendar year; the number, type and geographic distribution of AFVs in use in the previous calendar year; and the amount and distribution of each type of alternative transportation fuel (ATF) consumed in the previous calendar year.

    DATES:

    Comments regarding this proposed information collection must be received on or before October 26, 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, please advise the DOE Desk Officer at OMB of your intention to make a submission as soon as possible. The Desk Officer may be telephoned at 202-395-4718.

    ADDRESSES:

    Written comments should be sent to the DOE Desk Officer, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, New Executive Office Building, Room 10102, 735 17th Street NW., Washington, DC 20503.

    And to Cynthia Amezcua, EI-22, U.S. Department of Energy, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585, Fax (202) 586-9753, Email [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Requests for additional information or copies of the information collection instrument and instructions should be directed to Cynthia Amezcua, EI-22, [email protected], (202) 586-1658 http://wwwdev.eia.gov/survey/#eia-886.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This information collection request contains: (1) OMB No. 1905-0191; (2) Information Collection Request Title: Annual Survey of Alternative Fueled Vehicles; (3) Type of Request: Extension, without change, of a currently approved collection; (4) Purpose: Form EIA-886 data are collected from suppliers and users of AFVs. EIA uses data from these groups as a basis for estimating total AFV and ATF use in the U.S. These data are needed by Federal and State agencies, fuel suppliers, transit agencies and other fleets to determine if sufficient quantities of AFVs are available for purchase and to provide Congress with a measure of the extent to which the objectives of the Energy Policy Act of 1992 are being achieved. These data serve as market analysis tools for Congress, Federal/State agencies, AFV suppliers, vehicle fleet managers, and other interested organizations and persons. These data are also needed to satisfy numerous public requests for detailed information on AFVs and ATFs (in particular, the number of AFVs distributed by State, as well as the amount and location of the ATFs being consumed).

    EIA publishes summary information from the Form EIA-886 database in an annual report on EIA's Web site (www.eia.gov). This report covers historical and projected supplies of AFVs, AFV usage by selected user groups, and estimates of total U.S. AFV counts and U.S. consumption of ATFs. These data provide baseline inputs for DOE's transportation sector energy models. They also provide the energy consumption measures for alternative transportation fuels in EIA's State Energy Data System. For example, EIA's National Energy Modeling System (NEMS) has a component model that forecasts transportation sector energy consumption and provides a framework for AFV policy and technology analysis. The data obtained from Form EIA-886 are used to improve the explanatory power of the NEMS Transportation Demand Model by allowing for greater detail in representing AFV types and characteristics; (5) Annual Estimated Number of Respondents: 2,050; (6) Annual Estimated Number of Total Responses: 2,050; (7) Annual Estimated Number of Burden Hours: 8,215; (8) Annual Estimated Reporting and Recordkeeping Cost Burden: EIA estimates that there are no capital and start-up costs associated with this data collection. The information is maintained in the normal course of business. The cost of burden hours to the respondents is estimated to be $591,234 (8,215 burden hours times $71.97 per hour). Therefore, other than the cost of burden hours, EIA estimates that there are no additional costs for generating, maintaining and providing the information.

    Statutory Authority:

    Section 13(b) of the Federal Energy Administration Act of 1974, Pub. L. 93-275, (FEA Act), and codified at 15 U.S.C. 772(b), and section 503(b)(2) of the Energy Policy Act of 1992, Pub. L. 102-486 (EPACT92) codified at 42 U.S.C. 13253.

    Issued in Washington, DC, on September 21, 2015. Nanda Srinivasan, Director, Office of Survey Development and Statistical Integration, U.S. Energy Information Administration.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24417 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Energy Information Administration Proposed Agency Information Collection AGENCY:

    U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), Department of Energy.

    ACTION:

    Agency information collection activities: proposed extension with changes; notice and request for comments; correction.

    SUMMARY:

    EIA published a notice in the Federal Register of September 15, 2015, inviting public comment on the proposed three-year extension of its Oil and Gas Reserves System Surveys. This document replaces that notice and corrects an error in the Web site address for the collection instruments and instructions.

    EIA invites public comment on the proposed three-year extension of the following Oil and Gas Reserves System Survey Forms that EIA is developing for submission to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995: Revision of Form EIA-23L, Annual Survey of Domestic Oil and Gas Reserves, Field Level Report; extension without changes of Form EIA-64A, Annual Report of the Origin of Natural Gas Liquids Production; and continued suspension of Form EIA-23S, Annual Survey of Domestic Oil and Gas Reserves, Summary Level Report.

    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 collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

    DATES:

    Comments must be filed by November 24, 2015. If you anticipate difficulty in submitting comments within that period, contact the person listed in the below ADDRESSES Section as soon as possible.

    ADDRESSES:

    Written comments may be sent to Mr. Steven Grape, EI-24, U.S. Department of Energy, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585, by fax at (202) 586-4420, or by email at [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Requests for additional information should be directed to Mr. Grape, as listed above. The information collection instruments and instructions are available on the EIA Web site at:

    Form EIA-23L, http://www.eia.gov/survey/#eia-23l, Form EIA-23S, http://www.eia.gov/survey/#eia-23s, Form EIA-64A, http://www.eia.gov/survey/#eia-64a.
    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Comments and feedback are requested on the following topics directly related to the proposed changes to Form EIA-23L:

    • Field versus County Level Data Detail—EIA currently collects data on a field level basis, but publishes reserves estimates on a State and State subdivision level. Reporting burden to respondents may be reduced, depending on existing record keeping practices, if operators report proved reserves and production data aggregated at a county level. EIA is able to make accurate State and State subdivision level reserves estimates if proved reserves are reported at a county level. Abandoning field-level detail will result in some loss of detail for reserve estimates; however, it will increase the utility of the data by facilitating the matching of other economic data that are only published at the county level.

    • Well Counts (by County)—EIA does not currently collect the number of producing wells on Form EIA-23L. EIA proposes to collect well counts by county on Form EIA-23L to assist data quality validation of the production data reported on the form. Collecting well count data by county is consistent with commercially-available production data that is based on well-level reporting in many States and will facilitate data comparisons and data quality evaluations.

    • Type Code—EIA is considering deleting the Type Code “CH” for Chalk from Schedule B. EIA has Type Codes for certain reservoir types: CV for Conventional, SH for Shale, CB for Coalbed, CH for Chalk, and LP for Other Low Permeability Reservoirs. CH is currently underutilized and EIA proposes to delete Chalk as a reservoir Type Code. The two codes SH and LP have been used interchangeably by operators for tight oil reserves estimates and may be combined for crude oil into a new reservoir Type Code title “Tight.” EIA requests comments on the proposal to delete Type Code “CH” for Chalk, and combine reservoir Type codes “SH” and “LP” into a single category “Tight” for crude oil only.

    • Fuel Types—EIA tracks the proved reserves of four fuel types—two types of liquids; crude oil and lease condensate; and two types of natural gas proved reserves; nonassociated (aka gas well gas) and associated-dissolved (aka casinghead or oil well gas). EIA proposes to continue collecting proved reserves estimates by these four types, instead of combining them into Total Liquids and Total Natural Gas.

    • Producing versus Nonproducing Reserves—Currently operators report both producing and nonproducing proved reserves by field on Form EIA-23L. EIA requests comments on the ability to report these data on a county level basis.

    • Extensions, New Field Discoveries, and New Reservoir Discoveries in Old Fields—EIA requests comments on the utility of collecting and publishing these three components of Total Discoveries or whether it is more useful to report and publish these components under one data category such as “County level Discoveries.” EIA also requests comments on the burden of reporting these three components separately.

    • Field Code Master List—EIA proposes to delete the EIA Field Code Master List that is currently used to report data at the field level. Changing the reporting on Form EIA-23L from Field to County level would eliminate the need to publish or maintain the EIA Field Code Master List.

    All of the proposed changes that are described above are shaded the color yellow on the draft Form EIA-23L to illustrate and facilitate the review of the data elements that are affected by these proposed changes.

    This information collection request contains:

    (1) OMB No.: 1905-0057;

    (2) Information Collection Request Title: Oil and Gas Reserves System.

    (3) Type of Request: Revision of the currently approved Form EIA-23L; extension without changes of the currently approved Form EIA-64A; and continued suspension of collection of the currently approved Form EIA-23S (suspended).

    (4) Purpose: In response to Public Law 95-91 Section 657, estimates of U.S. oil and gas reserves are to be reported annually. Many U.S. government agencies have an interest in the definitions of proved oil and gas reserves and the quality, reliability, and usefulness of estimates of reserves. Among these are the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), Department of Energy; Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM), Department of Interior; Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Department of the Treasury; and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Each of these organizations has specific purposes for collecting, using, or estimating proved reserves. EIA has a congressional mandate to provide accurate annual estimates of U.S. proved crude oil, natural gas, and natural gas liquids reserves, and EIA presents annual reserves data in EIA Web reports to meet this requirement. The BOEM maintains estimates of proved reserves to carry out their responsibilities in leasing, collecting royalty payments, and regulating the activities of oil and gas companies on Federal lands and water. Accurate reserve estimates are important, as the BOEM is second only to the IRS in generating Federal revenue. For the IRS, proved reserves and occasionally probable reserves are an essential component of calculating taxes for companies owning or producing oil and gas. The SEC requires publicly traded petroleum companies to annually file a reserves statement as part of their 10-K filing. The basic purpose of the 10-K filing is to provide public investors with a clear and reliable financial basis to assess the relative value, as a financial asset, of a company's reserves, especially in comparison to other similar oil and gas companies.

    The Government also uses the resulting information to develop national and regional estimates of proved reserves of domestic crude oil, natural gas, and natural gas liquids to facilitate national energy policy decisions. These estimates are essential to the development, implementation, and evaluation of energy policy and legislation. Data are used directly in EIA Web reports concerning U.S. crude oil, natural gas, and natural gas liquids reserves, and are incorporated into a number of other Web reports and analyses.

    EIA proposes to make the following changes to Form EIA-23L, Annual Survey of Domestic Oil and Gas Reserves, Field Level Report:

    • Change the title of Form EIA-23L to Annual Survey of Domestic Oil and Gas Reserves, County Level Report;

    • Change the title of Schedule A to Operated Proved Reserves, Production, and Related Data by County;

    • Operators will be instructed to file their proved reserves by county rather than by field. Line Item 2.0 will be named “County Data (operated basis);”

    • Line Item 2.1.4 “Field Code”, will be changed to “County Name;”

    • Line Item 2.1.5 “MMS Code” will be changed to “Type Code;”

    • Line Item 2.1.6. “Field Name” will be changed to “Field, Play, or Prospect Name (Optional);”

    • Line Items 2.1.9 “water depth” and 2.1.10 “field discovery year” will be replaced with 2.1.9 “# of producing wells”, 2.1.10 “# of wells added [in survey year];” and

    • Line Item 2.1.11, “Prospect Name (optional) will be replaced with “# of wells sold [in survey year].”

    Comments and Feedback are requested on these proposed changes to Form EIA-23L.

    Secondary reports that use the data include EIA's Annual Energy Review, Annual Energy Outlook, Petroleum Supply Annual, and Natural Gas Annual.

    (5) Annual Estimated Number of Respondents:

    Forms EIA-23L/23S/64A: 1,450.

    (6) Annual Estimated Number of Total Responses:

    Forms EIA-23L/23S/64A: 1,450.

    (7) Annual Estimated Number of Burden Hours: 41,210.

    Form EIA-23L Annual Survey of Domestic Oil and Gas Reserves, County Level Report:

    38 hours (420 intermediate-size operators); 110 hours (160 large operators); 15 hours (270 small operators): 37,610 hours.

    Form EIA-23S Annual Survey of Domestic Oil and Gas Reserves, Summary Level Report: 4 hours (small operators): 0 hours (Currently suspended).

    Form EIA-64A Annual Report of the Origin of Natural Gas Liquids Production: 6 hours (600 natural gas plant operators): 3,600 hours.

    (8) Annual Estimated Reporting and Recordkeeping Cost Burden:

    Forms EIA-23L/23S/64A: EIA estimates that there are no capital and start-up costs associated with this data collection. The information is maintained in the normal course of business. The cost of burden hours to the respondents is estimated to be $2,965,884 (41,210 burden hours times $71.97 per hour). Therefore, other than the cost of burden hours, EIA estimates that there are no additional costs for generating, maintaining and providing the information.

    Statutory Authority:

    Section 13(b) of the Federal Energy Administration Act of 1974, Pub. L. 93-275, codified at 15 U.S.C. 772(b).

    Issued in Washington, DC, September 18, 2015. Nanda Srinivasan, Director, Office of Survey Development and Statistical Integration, U.S. Energy Information Administration.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24422 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. EL15-101-000] RC Cape May Holdings, LLC; Notice of Institution of Section 206 Proceeding and Refund Effective Date

    On September 21, 2015, the Commission issued an order in Docket No. EL15-101-000, pursuant to section 206 of the Federal Power Act (FPA), 16 U.S.C. 824e (2012), instituting an investigation into the justness and reasonableness of RC Cape May Holdings, LLC's Reactive Power Schedule. RC Cape May Holdings, LLC, 152 FERC ¶ 61,224 (2015).

    The refund effective date in Docket No. EL15-101-000, established pursuant to section 206(b) of the FPA, will be the date of publication of this notice in the Federal Register.

    Dated: September 21, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24372 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. ER15-2582-000] Carousel Wind Farm, LLC; Supplemental Notice That Initial Market-Based Rate Filing Includes Request for Blanket Section 204 Authorization

    This is a supplemental notice in the above-referenced proceeding of Carousel Wind Farm, LLC's application for market-based rate authority, with an accompanying rate tariff, noting that such application includes a request for blanket authorization, under 18 CFR part 34, of future issuances of securities and assumptions of liability.

    Any person desiring to intervene or to protest should file with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214). Anyone filing a motion to intervene or protest must serve a copy of that document on the Applicant.

    Notice is hereby given that the deadline for filing protests with regard to the applicant's request for blanket authorization, under 18 CFR part 34, of future issuances of securities and assumptions of liability, is September 23, 2015.

    The Commission encourages electronic submission of protests and interventions in lieu of paper, using the FERC Online links at http://www.ferc.gov. To facilitate electronic service, persons with Internet access who will eFile a document and/or be listed as a contact for an intervenor must create and validate an eRegistration account using the eRegistration link. Select the eFiling link to log on and submit the intervention or protests.

    Persons unable to file electronically should submit an original and 5 copies of the intervention or protest to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    The filings in the above-referenced proceeding are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the appropriate link in the above list. They are also available for electronic 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.

    Dated: September 3, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24378 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 1744-039] PacifiCorp; Notice of Scoping Meeting and Soliciting Scoping Comments for an Applicant Prepared Environmental Assessment Using the Alternative Licensing Process

    a. Type of Application: Alternative Licensing Process.

    b. Project No.: 1744-039.

    c. Applicant: PacifiCorp.

    d. Name of Project: Weber Hydroelectric Project.

    e. Location: On the Weber River, in Weber, Davis, and Morgan Counties, Utah. The project occupies 11.4 acres of United States lands administered by the U.S. Forest Service.

    f. Filed Pursuant to: Federal Power Act, 16 U.S.C. 791(a)-825(r).

    g. Applicant Contact: Eve Davies, PacifiCorp, 1407 West North Temple, Ste. 110, Salt Lake City, UT 84116; (801) 220-2245; email: [email protected]

    h. FERC Contact: Claire McGrath at (202) 502-8290; or email at [email protected]

    j. Deadline for filing scoping comments: November 6, 2015.

    The Commission strongly encourages electronic filing. Please file 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-1744-039.

    The Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure require all interveners filing documents with the Commission to serve a copy of that document on each person on the official service list for the project. Further, 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.

    k. The existing project consists of: (1) The Weber diversion dam with an overall length of 114 feet and crest elevation of 4,798 feet mean sea level (ms)l, consisting of a 27-foot-high, 79-foot-long concrete section, two radial gates approximately 29 feet long, and a 35-foot-long intake structure on the Weber River; (2) a 3-foot by 18-foot non-operative fish passage structure that is used to pass minimum flows through a calibrated slide gate opening; 3) an impoundment with surface area of 8.4 acres at elevation 4,798 msl and total storage of approximately 42 acre-feet; (4) a 9,107-foot-long, 5-foot to 6.3-foot diameter steel penstock partially encased in concrete beginning at the intake and terminating at the powerhouse on the Weber River; (5) a powerhouse with one 3,850 kW generating unit operating under a head of 185 feet and producing a 30-year average annual energy output of 16,932 MWh; (6) a discharging pipe returning turbine flows into the Weber River at the powerhouse; and (7) a 77-foot-long, 46-kV transmission line which connects to the Weber substation. PacifiCorp proposes to build a new fish passage structure at the edge of the existing diversion dam in an area that currently has graded, unvegetated soil.

    l. Scoping Process

    PacifiCorp intends to utilize the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's (Commission) alternative licensing process (ALP). Under the ALP, PacifiCorp will prepare an Applicant Prepared Environmental Assessment (APEA) and license application for the Weber Hydroelectric Project.

    PacifiCorp expects to file with the Commission, the APEA and the license application for the Weber Hydroelectric Project by February 21, 2018. Although PacifCorp's intent is to prepare an EA, there is the possibility that an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) will be required. Nevertheless, this meeting will satisfy the NEPA scoping requirements, irrespective of whether an EA or EIS is issued by the Commission.

    The purpose of this notice is to inform you of the opportunity to participate in the upcoming scoping meetings identified below, and to solicit your scoping comments.

    Scoping Meetings

    PacifiCorp and the Commission staff will hold two scoping meetings, one in the daytime and one in the evening, to help us identify the scope of issues to be addressed in the APEA.

    The daytime scoping meeting will focus on resource agency concerns, while the evening scoping meeting is primarily for public input. All interested individuals, organizations, and agencies are invited to attend one or both of the meetings, and to assist the staff in identifying the environmental issues that should be analyzed in the APEA. The times and locations of these meetings are as follows:

    Daytime Meeting Tuesday, October 6, 2015, 1:00 p.m. (MDT), Ben Lomond Suites, 2510 Washington Blvd., Ogden, Utah 84401. Evening Meeting Tuesday, October 6, 2015, 7:00 p.m. (MDT), Ben Lomond Suites, 2510 Washington Blvd., Ogden, Utah 84401.

    To help focus discussions, Scoping Document 1 was mailed in September 2015, outlining the subject areas to be addressed in the APEA to the parties on the mailing list. Copies of the SD1 also will be available at the scoping meetings. SD1 is available for review at the Commission in the Public Reference Room or may 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.

    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.

    Based on all written comments received, a Scoping Document 2 (SD2) may be issued. SD2 will include a revised list of issues, based on the scoping sessions.

    Environmental Site Review

    PacifiCorp and the Commission staff will conduct a project Environmental Site Review beginning at 9:00 a.m. (MDT) on Wednesday, October 7, 2015. All interested individuals, organizations, and agencies are invited to attend; however, anyone planning to attend should notify Miriam Hugentobler at [email protected] by September 21, 2015. All participants should meet at the Weber Hydroelectric Project recreation site parking lot (see SD1 for directions). All participants are responsible for their own transportation to the site.

    Objectives

    At the scoping meetings, the staff will: (1) Summarize the environmental issues tentatively identified for analysis in the APEA; (2) solicit from the meeting participants all available information, especially quantifiable data, on the resources at issue; (3) encourage statements from experts and the public on issues that should be analyzed in the APEA, including viewpoints in opposition to, or in support of, the staff's preliminary views; (4) determine the resource issues to be addressed in the APEA; and (5) identify those issues that require a detailed analysis, as well as those issues that do not require a detailed analysis.

    Procedures

    The meetings will be recorded by a stenographer and will become part of the formal record of the Commission proceeding on the project.

    Individuals, organizations, and agencies with environmental expertise and concerns are encouraged to attend the meetings and to assist PacifiCorp in defining and clarifying the issues to be addressed in the APEA.

    Dated: September 3, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24381 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. ER15-2601-000] Green Mountain Storage, LLC; Supplemental Notice That Initial Market-Based Rate Filing Includes Request For Blanket Section 204 Authorization

    This is a supplemental notice in the above-referenced proceeding of Green Mountain Storage, LLC's application for market-based rate authority, with an accompanying rate tariff, noting that such application includes a request for blanket authorization, under 18 CFR part 34, of future issuances of securities and assumptions of liability.

    Any person desiring to intervene or to protest should file with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street, NE., Washington, DC 20426, in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure

    (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214). Anyone filing a motion to intervene or protest must serve a copy of that document on the Applicant.

    Notice is hereby given that the deadline for filing protests with regard to the applicant's request for blanket authorization, under 18 CFR part 34, of future issuances of securities and assumptions of liability, is September 23, 2015.

    The Commission encourages electronic submission of protests and interventions in lieu of paper, using the FERC Online links at http://www.ferc.gov. To facilitate electronic service, persons with Internet access who will eFile a document and/or be listed as a contact for an intervenor must create and validate an eRegistration account using the eRegistration link. Select the eFiling link to log on and submit the intervention or protests.

    Persons unable to file electronically should submit an original and 5 copies of the intervention or protest to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    The filings in the above-referenced proceeding are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the appropriate link in the above list. They are also available for electronic 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.

    Dated: September 3, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24379 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Notice of Effectiveness of Exempt Wholesale Generator Status Panda Liberty LLC EG15-92-000 Panda Patriot LLC EG15-93-000 Panda Stonewall LLC EG15-94-000 Blue Sky West, LLC EG15-95-000 87RL 8me LLC EG15-96-000 Route 66 Wind Power, LLC EG15-97-000 North Star Solar, LLC EG15-98-000 Indeck Corinth Limited Partnership EG15-99-000 Greenleaf Energy Unit 1 LLC EG15-100-000 Slate Creek Wind Project, LLC EG15-101-000

    Take notice that during the month of August 2015, the status of the above-captioned entities as Exempt Wholesale Generators became effective by operation of the Commission's regulations. 18 CFR 366.7(a).

    Dated: September 3, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24377 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings #1

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric corporate filings:

    Docket Numbers: EC15-98-000.

    Applicants: Union Power Partners, L.P., Entergy Arkansas, Inc., Entergy Gulf States Louisiana, L.L.C., Entergy Texas, Inc.

    Description: Amendment to March 17, 2015 Joint Application for Section 203 Authorization of Union Power Partners, L.P., Entergy Arkansas, Inc., Entergy Gulf States Louisiana, L.L.C., and Entergy New Orleans, Inc.

    Filed Date: 9/18/15.

    Accession Number: 20150918-5251.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/9/15.

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric rate filings:

    Docket Numbers: ER10-3117-004; ER10-3115-003; ER13-445-006; ER14-2823-004; ER11-4060-006; ER11-4061-006; ER15-1170-002; ER15-1171-002; ER15-1172-002; ER15-1173-002.

    Applicants: Lea Power Partners, LLC, Waterside Power, LLC, Badger Creek Limited, Double C Generation Limited Partnership, High Sierra Limited, Kern Front Limited, Bear Mountain Limited, Chalk Cliff Limited, Live Oak Limited, McKittrick Limited.

    Description: Notice of Change in Status Lea Power Partners, LLC, et al.

    Filed Date: 9/21/15.

    Accession Number: 20150921-5050.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/13/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER11-3417-010; ER10-2895-014; ER14-1964-005; ER13-2143-007; ER10-3167-006; ER13-203-006; ER11-2292-014; ER11-3942-013; ER11-2293-014; ER10-2917-014; ER11-2294-013; ER12-2447-012; ER13-1613-007; ER10-2918-015; ER10-2920-014; ER11-3941-012; ER10-2921-014; ER10-2922-014; ER13-1346-006; ER10-2966-014; ER11-2383-009; ER10-3178-007.

    Applicants: Alta Wind VIII, LLC, Bear Swamp Power Company LLC, BIF II Safe Harbor Holdings, LLC, Black Bear Development Holdings, LLC, Black Bear Hydro Partners, LLC, Black Bear SO, LLC, Brookfield Energy Marketing Inc., Brookfield Energy Marketing LP, Brookfield Energy Marketing US LLC, Brookfield Power Piney & Deep Creek LLC, Brookfield Renewable Energy Marketing US LLC, Brookfield Smoky Mountain Hydropower LLC, Brookfield White Pine Hydro LLC, Carr Street Generating Station, L.P., Erie Boulevard Hydropower, L.P., Granite Reliable Power, LLC, Great Lakes Hydro America, LLC, Hawks Nest Hydro LLC, Mesa Wind Power Corporation, Rumford Falls Hydro LLC, Safe Harbor Water Power Corporation, Windstar Energy, LLC.

    Description: Notice of Change in Status of the Brookfield Companies.

    Filed Date: 9/18/15.

    Accession Number: 20150918-5257.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/9/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1406-002.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: Report Filing: 2015-09-21_SA 2766 Refund Report of ATC-City of Elkhorn CFA to be effective N/A.

    Filed Date: 9/21/15.

    Accession Number: 20150921-5049.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/13/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-2541-000.

    Applicants: Burgess Capital LLC.

    Description: Amendment to August 27, 2015 Burgess Capital LLC tariff filing.

    Filed Date: 9/17/15.

    Accession Number: 20150917-5163.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-2650-000.

    Applicants: ISO New England Inc., New England Power Pool Participants Committee.

    Description: Section 205(d) Rate Filing: Monthly Qualified Capacity Changes to be effective 10/13/2015.

    Filed Date: 9/14/15.

    Accession Number: 20150914-5169.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/5/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-2675-000.

    Applicants: PJM Interconnection, L.L.C.

    Description: Section 205(d) Rate Filing: First Revised Construction Service Agreement No. 3477, Queue No. R11/Z2-109 to be effective 8/19/2015.

    Filed Date: 9/18/15.

    Accession Number: 20150918-5181.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/9/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-2676-000.

    Applicants: Cedar Bluff Wind, LLC.

    Description: Baseline eTariff Filing: Cedar Bluff Wind, LLC Application for MBR Authority to be effective 11/17/2015.

    Filed Date: 9/18/15.

    Accession Number: 20150918-5186.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/9/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-2677-000.

    Applicants: Pacific Gas and Electric Company.

    Description: Section 205(d) Rate Filing: Revisions to PWRPA's Customer Service Charge to be effective 9/21/2015.

    Filed Date: 9/18/15.

    Accession Number: 20150918-5208.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/9/15.

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric securities filings:

    Docket Numbers: ES15-71-000.

    Applicants: PPL Electric Utilities Corporation.

    Description: Application under Section 204 of the Federal Power Act of PPL Electric Utilities Corporation.

    Filed Date: 9/18/15.

    Accession Number: 20150918-5245.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/9/15.

    Docket Numbers: ES15-72-000.

    Applicants: Interstate Power and Light Company.

    Description: Application under Section 204 of the Federal Power Act of Interstate Power and Light Company.

    Filed Date: 9/18/15.

    Accession Number: 20150918-5248.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/9/15.

    The filings are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the links or querying the docket number.

    Any person desiring to intervene or protest in any of the above proceedings must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Regulations (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214) on or before 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date. Protests may be considered, but intervention is necessary to become a party to the proceeding.

    eFiling is encouraged. More detailed information relating to filing requirements, interventions, protests, service, and qualifying facilities filings can be found at: http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling/filing-req.pdf. For other information, call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: September 21, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24370 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 2203-000] Alabama Power Company; Notice of Authorization for Continued Project Operation

    On August 16, 2013, Alabama Power Company, licensee for the Holt Hydroelectric Project, filed an Application for a New License pursuant to the Federal Power Act (FPA) and the Commission's regulations thereunder. The Holt Hydroelectric Project is located on the Black Warrior River, in Tuscaloosa County, Alabama.

    The license for Project No. 2203 was issued for a period ending August 31, 2015. Section 15(a)(1) of the FPA, 16 U.S.C. 808(a)(1), requires the Commission, at the expiration of a license term, to issue from year-to-year an annual license to the then licensee under the terms and conditions of the prior license until a new license is issued, or the project is otherwise disposed of as provided in section 15 or any other applicable section of the FPA. If the project's prior license waived the applicability of section 15 of the FPA, then, based on section 9(b) of the Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. 558(c), and as set forth at 18 CFR 16.21(a), if the licensee of such project has filed an application for a subsequent license, the licensee may continue to operate the project in accordance with the terms and conditions of the license after the minor or minor part license expires, until the Commission acts on its application. If the licensee of such a project has not filed an application for a subsequent license, then it may be required, pursuant to 18 CFR.16.21(b), to continue project operations until the Commission issues someone else a license for the project or otherwise orders disposition of the project.

    If the project is subject to section 15 of the FPA, notice is hereby given that an annual license for Project No. 2203 is issued to the licensee for a period effective September 1, 2015 through August 31, 2016 or until the issuance of a new license for the project or other disposition under the FPA, whichever comes first.

    If issuance of a new license (or other disposition) does not take place on or before August 31, 2016, notice is hereby given that, pursuant to 18 CFR 16.18(c), an annual license under section 15(a)(1) of the FPA is renewed automatically without further order or notice by the Commission, unless the Commission orders otherwise. If the project is not subject to section 15 of the FPA, notice is hereby given that the licensee, Alabama Power Company, is authorized to continue operation of the Holt Hydroelectric Project, until such time as the Commission acts on its application for a subsequent license.

    Dated: September 3, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24382 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. DI15-4-000] Steve Patton; Notice of Declaration of Intention and Soliciting Comments, Protests, and Motions To Intervene

    Take notice that the following application has been filed with the Commission and is available for public inspection:

    a. Application Type: Declaration of Intention.

    b. Docket No: DI15-4-000.

    c. Date Filed: May 11, 2015.

    d. Applicant: Steve Patton.

    e. Name of Project: Patton Colorado Hydropower Project.

    f. Location: The proposed Patton Colorado Hydropower Project will be located on Columbine Creek (feeder to South Fork of Rio Grande) in the town of Southfork, Mineral County, Colorado.

    g. Filed Pursuant to: Section 23(b)(1) of the Federal Power Act, 16 U.S.C 817(b) (2012).

    h. Applicant Contact: Steve Patton, 2418 Hawthorne, Amarillo, TX 79109; telephone: (806) 355-2418, fax: (806) 463-2418, email address: [email protected]

    i. FERC Contact: Any questions on this notice should be addressed to Jennifer Polardino, (202) 502-6437, or email address: [email protected]

    j. Deadline for filing comments, protests, and motions to intervene is: 30 days from the issuance date of this notice by the Commission.

    The Commission strongly encourages electronic filing. Please file comments, protests, and motions to intervene 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 DI15-04-000.

    k. Description of Project: The proposed run-of-river Patton Colorado Hydropower Project would consist of: (1) Diverting water from Columbine Creek through either a 10-inch-diameter pipe or two 6-inch diameter pipes, by 220-foot-long, leading to a gravitation water vortex type generating unit; (2) a generating unit rated between 2 to 10 kilowatt (kW) with a rated head of 8 feet; and (3) appurtenant facilities.

    When a Declaration of Intention is filed with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the Federal Power Act requires the Commission to investigate and determine if the project would affect the interests of interstate or foreign commerce. The Commission also determines whether or not the project: (1) Would be located on a navigable waterway; (2) would occupy public lands or reservations of the United States; (3) would utilize surplus water or water power from a government dam; or (4) would be located on a non-navigable stream over which Congress has Commerce Clause jurisdiction and would be constructed or enlarged after 1935.

    l. Locations of the Application: 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 at the address in item (h) above.

    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, .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: All filings must bear in all capital letters the title “COMMENTS”, “PROTESTS”, AND “MOTIONS TO INTERVENE”, as applicable, and the Docket Number of the particular application to which the filing refers. A copy of any Motion to Intervene must also be served upon each representative of the Applicant specified in the particular application.

    p. Agency Comments: Federal, state, and local agencies are invited to file comments on the described application. A copy of the application may be obtained by agencies directly from the Applicant. If an agency does not file comments within the time specified for filing comments, it will be presumed to have no comments. One copy of an agency's comments must also be sent to the Applicant's representatives.

    Dated: September 3, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24376 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings #2 September 21, 2015.

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric rate filings:

    Docket Numbers: ER15-2678-000.

    Applicants: NorthWestern Corporation.

    Description: Initial rate filing: Rate Schedule FERC No. 38-SD—Agreements with Western Area Power Administration to be effective 9/22/2015.

    Filed Date: 9/21/15.

    Accession Number: 20150921-5097.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/13/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-2679-000.

    Applicants: Latigo Wind Park, LLC.

    Description: Baseline eTariff Filing: Latigo Wind Park, LLC MBR Tariff to be effective 11/15/2015.

    Filed Date: 9/21/15.

    Accession Number: 20150921-5133.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/13/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-2680-000.

    Applicants: Sandstone Solar LLC.

    Description: Baseline eTariff Filing: Sandstone Solar LLC MBR Tariff to be effective 11/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 9/21/15.

    Accession Number: 20150921-5161.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/13/15.

    The filings are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the links or querying the docket number.

    Any person desiring to intervene or protest in any of the above proceedings must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Regulations (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214) on or before 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date. Protests may be considered, but intervention is necessary to become a party to the proceeding.

    eFiling is encouraged. More detailed information relating to filing requirements, interventions, protests, service, and qualifying facilities filings can be found at: http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling/filing-req.pdf. For other information, call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: September 21, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24371 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. CD15-33-000] City of Cheyenne, Wyoming; Notice of Preliminary Determination of a Qualifying Conduit Hydropower Facility and Soliciting Comments and Motions To Intervene

    On August 26, 2015, the City of Cheyenne, Wyoming, by and through its Board of Public Utilities, filed a notice of intent to construct a qualifying conduit hydropower facility, pursuant to section 30 of the Federal Power Act (FPA), as amended by section 4 of the Hydropower Regulatory Efficiency Act of 2013 (HREA). The proposed Sherard Hydroelectric Generation Facility would have an installed capacity of 950 kilowatts (kW), and would be located along an existing 48-inch-diameter raw water pipeline within the city's water treatment plant. The project would be located near the City of Cheyenne, Wyoming.

    Applicant Contact: Tim Wilson, Director, 2416 Snyder Ave., Cheyenne, WY 82001, Phone No. (307) 637-6460.

    FERC Contact: Christopher Chaney, Phone No. (202) 502-6778, email: [email protected]

    Qualifying Conduit Hydropower Facility Description: The proposed project would consist of: (1) A proposed two-level powerhouse approximately 36 feet by 36 feet adjacent to the existing water treatment plant building; (2) an approximately 800-foot-long, up to 48-inch-diameter penstock teeing off the existing 48-inch-diameter raw water pipeline; (3) one impulse turbine/generator unit with an installed capacity of 950 kilowatt (kW); (4) a short discharge returning water to the existing 48-inch-diameter raw water pipeline; and (5) appurtenant facilities.

    The proposed project would have a total installed capacity of 950 kW.

    A qualifying conduit hydropower facility is one that is determined or deemed to meet all of the criteria shown in the table below.

    Table 1—Criteria for Qualifying Conduit Hydropower Facility Statutory provision Description Satisfies
  • (Y/N)
  • FPA 30(a)(3)(A), as amended by HREA The conduit the facility uses is a tunnel, canal, pipeline, aqueduct, flume, ditch, or similar manmade water conveyance that is operated for the distribution of water for agricultural, municipal, or industrial consumption and not primarily for the generation of electricity Y FPA 30(a)(3)(C)(i), as amended by HREA The facility is constructed, operated, or maintained for the generation of electric power and uses for such generation only the hydroelectric potential of a non-federally owned conduit Y FPA 30(a)(3)(C)(ii), as amended by HREA The facility has an installed capacity that does not exceed 5 megawatts Y FPA 30(a)(3)(C)(iii), as amended by HREA On or before August 9, 2013, the facility is not licensed, or exempted from the licensing requirements of Part I of the FPA Y

    Preliminary Determination: Based upon the above criteria, Commission staff preliminarily determines that the proposal satisfies the requirements for a qualifying conduit hydropower facility, which is not required to be licensed or exempted from licensing.

    Comments and Motions to Intervene: Deadline for filing comments contesting whether the facility meets the qualifying criteria is 45 days from the issuance date of this notice.

    Deadline for filing motions to intervene is 30 days from the issuance date of this notice.

    Anyone may submit comments or a motion to intervene in accordance with the requirements of Rules of Practice and Procedure, 18 CFR 385.210 and 385.214. Any motions to intervene must be received on or before the specified deadline date for the particular proceeding.

    Filing and Service of Responsive Documents: All filings must (1) bear in all capital letters the “COMMENTS CONTESTING QUALIFICATION FOR A CONDUIT HYDROPOWER FACILITY” or “MOTION TO INTERVENE,” as applicable; (2) state in the heading the name of the applicant and the project number of the application to which the filing responds; (3) state the name, address, and telephone number of the person filing; and (4) otherwise comply with the requirements of sections 385.2001 through 385.2005 of the Commission's regulations.1 All comments contesting Commission staff's preliminary determination that the facility meets the qualifying criteria must set forth their evidentiary basis.

    1 18 CFR 385.2001-2005 (2015).

    The Commission strongly encourages electronic filing. Please file motions to intervene 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. 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.

    Locations of Notice of Intent: Copies of the notice of intent can be obtained directly from the applicant or such copies can be viewed and reproduced at the Commission in its Public Reference Room, Room 2A, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426. The filing may also be viewed on the Web at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/elibrary.asp using the “eLibrary” link. Enter the docket number (i.e., CD15-33) in the docket number field to access the document. For assistance, call toll-free 1-866-208-3676 or email [email protected] For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: September 3, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24375 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 5069-011] Cascade Clean Energy, Inc.; Kingdom Energy Products; Notice of Transfer of Exemption

    1. By letter filed August 19, 2015, Neva Van Hook, d/b/a Kingdom Energy Products (KEP) informed the Commission that the exemption from licensing for the Sygitowicz Creek Power Project, FERC No. 5069, originally issued July 14, 1982,1 has been transferred to Kingdom Energy Products. The project is located on the Sygitowicz Creek, Whatcom County, Washington. The transfer of an exemption does not require Commission approval.

    1 20 FERC ¶ 62,051, Order Granting Exemption From Licensing of a Small Hydroelectric Project of 5 Megawatts or Less (1982).

    2. Kingdom Energy Products is now the exemptee of the Sygitowicz Creek Power Project, FERC No. 5069. All correspondence should be forwarded to: Mr. Alan Van Hook, Kingdom Energy Products, Box 557, Klawock, AK 99925.

    Dated: September 3, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24383 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. RM98-1-000] Records Governing Off-the-Record Communications; Public Notice

    This constitutes notice, in accordance with 18 CFR 385.2201(b), of the receipt of prohibited and exempt off-the-record communications. Order No. 607 (64 FR 51222, September 22, 1999) requires Commission decisional employees, who make or receive a prohibited or exempt off-the-record communication relevant to the merits of a contested proceeding, to deliver to the Secretary of the Commission, a copy of the communication, if written, or a summary of the substance of any oral communication.

    Prohibited communications are included in a public, non-decisional file associated with, but not a part of, the decisional record of the proceeding. Unless the Commission determines that the prohibited communication and any responses thereto should become a part of the decisional record, the prohibited off-the-record communication will not be considered by the Commission in reaching its decision. Parties to a proceeding may seek the opportunity to respond to any facts or contentions made in a prohibited off-the-record communication, and may request that the Commission place the prohibited communication and responses thereto in the decisional record. The Commission will grant such a request only when it determines that fairness so requires. Any person identified below as having made a prohibited off-the-record communication shall serve the document on all parties listed on the official service list for the applicable proceeding in accordance with Rule 2010, 18 CFR 385.2010.

    Exempt off-the-record communications are included in the decisional record of the proceeding, unless the communication was with a cooperating agency as described by 40 CFR 1501.6, made under 18 CFR 385.2201(e)(1)(v).

    The following is a list of off-the-record communications recently received by the Secretary of the Commission. The communications listed are grouped by docket numbers in ascending order. These filings are available for electronic review at the Commission in the Public Reference Room or may 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, please contact FERC Online Support at [email protected] or toll free at (866) 208-3676, or for TTY, contact (202) 502-8659.

    Docket No. File date Presenter or requester Prohibited: 1. CP14-96-000 9-8-15 Nuclear Information and Resource Service. Exempt: 1. CP15-93-000 9-8-15 U.S. Representative Tim Murphy. 2. CP13-483-000, CP13-492-000 9-8-15 FERC Staff.1 3. CP09-6-001 9-11-15 FERC Staff.2 4. CP14-347-000 9-15-15 FERC Staff.3 5. P-2464-000, P-2484-000 9-16-15 FERC staff.4 1 Notes from 9-2-15 telephone conference call with federal cooperating agencies regarding production of the final environmental impact statement. 2 Summary of 9-2-15 telephone conference with Oregon LNG Representatives and DOT PHMSA Staff. 3 Minutes from 9-3-15 meeting with National Marine Fisheries Service, US Army Corps of Engineers, Magnolia, and their respective contractors. 4 eMails from 3-27-15 to 7-2-15 regarding the license application and environmental assessment for the Upper and Weed Dams. Dated: September 21, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24374 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. OR15-38-000] ETP Crude LLC; Notice of Petition for Declaratory Order

    Take notice that on September 21, 2015, pursuant to Rule 207(a)(2) of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's (Commission) Rules of Practice and Procedure, 18 CFR 385.207(a)(2) (2014), ETP Crude LLC filed a petition for a declaratory order seeking approval of the overall tariff and rate structure, proration procedure and the other matters set forth in Article III for a new crude oil pipeline that will have the capacity to accept approximately 120,000 barrels per day of crude oil from receipt points located in Reeves County, Texas and Lea County, New Mexico for transportation to delivery points in Loving County, Texas and Lea County, New Mexico, all 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 October 21, 2015.

    Dated: September 21, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24373 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. PF14-22-000] Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company, LLC; Notice of Public Scoping Meeting for the Northeast Energy Direct Project, and Extension of Scoping Comment Period

    The staff of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (Commission) will hold an additional public scoping meeting for the Northeast Energy Direct Pipeline Project (Project) proposed by Tennessee Gas Pipeline in the above-referenced docket. This meeting was referenced in the previous Notice issued on June 30, 2015. The scoping comment period has also been extended until October 16, 2015. In addition to sending written comments, the Commission invites you to attend the public scoping meeting its staff will conduct in the project area to receive verbal comments on the Project. Transcripts of the meetings will be available for review in eLibrary (www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/elibrary.asp) under Docket No. PF14-22-000. The meeting time and location are provided below.

    Date and time Location September 29, 2015, 6:00 p.m Franklin Pierce University, Field House, University Drive, Rindge, New Hampshire 03461, 603-899-4000.

    The Commission's staff will begin the sign-up of speakers one hour before the meeting begins. The scoping meeting will begin with a brief description of our environmental review process by Commission staff, after which speakers will be called. The meeting will end once all speakers have provided their comments or 11:00 p.m., whichever comes first. A time limit may be implemented (typically no less than 3 minutes) for each commenter, to ensure all those wishing to comment have the opportunity to do so. Speakers should structure their oral comments accordingly. Time limits will be strictly enforced to ensure that as many individuals as possible are given an opportunity to comment. It is important to note that written comments provided to staff, or otherwise filed with FERC, hold the same weight as oral comments.

    Dated: September 3, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24384 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. ER15-2602-000] Meyersdale Storage, LLC; Supplemental Notice That Initial Market-Based Rate Filing Includes Request for Blanket Section 204 Authorization

    This is a supplemental notice in the above-referenced proceeding of Meyersdale Storage, LLC's application for market-based rate authority, with an accompanying rate tariff, noting that such application includes a request for blanket authorization, under 18 CFR part 34, of future issuances of securities and assumptions of liability.

    Any person desiring to intervene or to protest should file with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214). Anyone filing a motion to intervene or protest must serve a copy of that document on the Applicant.

    Notice is hereby given that the deadline for filing protests with regard to the applicant's request for blanket authorization, under 18 CFR part 34, of future issuances of securities and assumptions of liability, is September 23, 2015.

    The Commission encourages electronic submission of protests and interventions in lieu of paper, using the FERC Online links at http://www.ferc.gov. To facilitate electronic service, persons with Internet access who will eFile a document and/or be listed as a contact for an intervenor must create and validate an eRegistration account using the eRegistration link. Select the eFiling link to log on and submit the intervention or protests.

    Persons unable to file electronically should submit an original and 5 copies of the intervention or protest to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    The filings in the above-referenced proceeding are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the appropriate link in the above list. They are also available for electronic 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.

    Dated: September 3, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24380 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [ER-FRL-9023-1] Environmental Impact Statements; Notice of Availability

    Responsible Agency: Office of Federal Activities, General Information (202) 564-7146 or http://www2.epa.gov/nepa.

    Weekly receipt of Environmental Impact Statements (EISs). Filed 09/14/2015 Through 09/18/2015. Pursuant to 40 CFR 1506.9.

    Notice: Section 309(a) of the Clean Air Act requires that EPA make public its comments on EISs issued by other Federal agencies. EPA's comment letters on EISs are available at: https://cdxnodengn.epa.gov/cdx-enepa-public/action/eis/search.

    EIS No. 20150265, Final, BR, CA, North Valley Regional Recycled Water Program, review period ends:10/26/2015, Contact: Rain Emerson 559-487-5196. EIS No. 20150266, Final, USFS, AZ, PROGRAMMATIC—Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests Land Management Plan, review period ends: 12/24/2015, Contact: Tom Greene 928-333-6268. EIS No. 20150267, Final, USACE, WA, Skokomish River Ecosystem Restoration, review period ends:10/26/2015, Contact: Nancy C. Gleason 206-764-6577. EIS No. 20150268, Revised Final, USFS, ID, Clear Creek Integrated Restoration Project, review period ends:10/26/2015, Contact: Lois Hill 208-935-4258. EIS No. 20150269, Final, FHWA, NY, Cross Harbor Freight Program, review period ends: 10/26/2015, Contact: Peter Osborn 518-431-4127. EIS No. 20150270, Final, FHWA, MN, US Highway 53 from Virginia to Eveleth Minnesota, Contact: Philip Forst 651-291-6110. Under MAP-21 Section 1319, FHWA has issued a single FEIS and ROD. Therefore, the 30-day wait/review period under NEPA does not apply to this action. EIS No. 20150271, Final, USACE, CA, South San Francisco Bay Shoreline Phase I, review period ends:10/26/2015, Contact: William DeJager 415-503-6866. EIS No. 20150272, Draft, USFS, ID, Becker Integrated Resource Project, comment period ends: 11/09/2015, Contact: Michael Feiger 208-392-6681. EIS No. 20150273, Draft, USACE, HI, Ala Wai Canal Project, comment period ends: 11/09/2015, Contact: Derek Chow 808-835-4026. EIS No. 20150274, Final Supplement, USFS, OR, Motorized Vehicle Use on the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest Supplement, review period ends: 11/02/2015, Contact: David Krantz 541-618-2126.

    Amended Notices

    EIS No. 20150028, Final, USFS, ID, WITHDRAWN—Clear Creek Integrated Restoration Project, review period ends: 03/16/2015, Contact: Lois Hill 208-935-4258. Revision to FR Notice Published02/20/2015; Officially Withdrawn per request of the submitting agency. EIS No. 20150200, Second Draft, USFWS, CA, South Bay Salt Pond Restoration Project, Phase 2, comment period ends: 10/30/2015, Contact: Anne Morkill 510-792-0222. Revision to the FR Notice Published07/24/2015; extending comment period from 9/22/2015 to 10/30/2015. EIS No. 20150217, Draft, RUS, PR, Arecibo Waste-to-Energy and Resource Recovery Project, comment period ends: 11/12/2015, Contact: Lauren McGee Rayburn 202-695-2540. Revision to FR Notice Published08/14/2015; extending comment period from 09/28/2015 to 11/12/2015. Dated: September 22, 2015. Karin Leff, Acting Director, NEPA Compliance Division, Office of Federal Activities.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24455 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0879; FRL-9934-22] Environmental Modeling Public Meeting; Notice of Public Meeting AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    An Environmental Modeling Public Meeting (EMPM) will be held on October 26, 2015. This Notice announces the location and time for the meeting and provides a tentative list of topics to be covered in the meeting. The EMPM provides a public forum for EPA and its stakeholders to discuss current issues related to modeling pesticide fate, transport, and exposure for pesticide risk assessments in a regulatory context.

    DATES:

    The meeting will be held on October 26, 2015 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

    Requests to participate in the meeting must be received on or before October 15, 2015.

    To request accommodation of a disability, please contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATON CONTACT, preferably at least 10 days prior to the meeting, to give EPA as much time as possible to process your request.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting will be held at the Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP), One Potomac Yard (South Building), First Floor Conference Center (S-1204/6), 2777 S. Crystal Drive, Arlington, VA 22202.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Meridith Fry or R. David Jones, Environmental Fate and Effects Division, Office of Pesticide Programs, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001; telephone numbers: 703-347-0128 and 703-305-6725; fax number: 703-347-8011; email address: [email protected] and [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 required to conduct testing of chemical substances under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA), or the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). Since other entities may also be interested, the Agency has not attempted to describe all the specific entities that may be affected by this action. 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:

    • Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing and Hunting NAICS code 11 • Utilities NAICS code 22 • Professional, Scientific and Technical NAICS code 54 B. How can I get copies of this document and other related information?

    The docket for this action, identified by docket identification (ID) number EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0879, is available at http://www.regulations.gov or at the Office of Pesticide Programs Regulatory Public Docket (OPP Docket) in the Environmental Protection Agency Docket Center (EPA/DC), West William Jefferson Clinton Bldg., Rm. 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001. The Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The telephone number for the Public Reading Room is (202) 566-1744, and the telephone number for the OPP Docket is (703) 305-5805. Please review the visitor instructions and additional information about the docket available at http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

    II. Background

    On a biannual interval, an Environmental Modeling Public Meeting (EMPM) is held for presentation and discussion of current issues related to modeling pesticide fate, transport, and exposure for risk assessment in a regulatory context. Meeting dates and abstract requests are announced through the “empmlist” forum on the LYRIS list server at https://lists.epa.gov/read/all_forums/.

    III. How can I request to participate in this meeting?

    You may submit a request to participate in this meeting to the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. Do not submit any information in your request that is considered CBI. Requests to participate in the meeting, identified by docket ID number EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0879, must be received on or before October 15, 2015. Participants can also join the meeting by going to: https://epa.connectsolutions.com/oct2015empm/ and enter as a Guest. Participants will then need to call in to the meeting by using the call in number 1-866-299-3188, followed by the conference code (703) 555-6627.

    IV. Tentative Topics for the Meeting Spatial Aquatic Model Downstream chemical transport methods Estuarine scenarios for pesticide risk assessment PRZM-GW scenario development Spray drift assessment procedures and refinements Incorporation of filter strips in exposure assessments Down-the-drain model development Endangered species: Probabilistic modeling, population modeling, and refined aquatic exposure methods New Tools to estimate pesticide exposure and effects for listed aquatic and terrestrial species Authority:

    7 U.S.C. 136 et seq.

    Dated: September 18, 2015. Donald J. Brady, Director, Environmental Fate and Effects Division, Office of Pesticide Programs.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24550 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [EPA-HQ-OPPT-2013-0579; FRL-9930-38] Recommendations for Specifications, Environmental Performance Standards, and Ecolabels for Federal Procurement AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    This document describes EPA's approach for providing recommendations to federal agencies on specifications, environmental performance standards, and ecolabels for purchasing environmentally preferable products and services. The federal government is one of the world's largest purchasers. This action will help federal agencies purchase environmentally preferable products and services in accordance with Executive Order 13693 and reduce public health and environmental impacts associated with the federal government's extensive supply chain.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For technical information contact: Holly Elwood, Chemistry, Economics, and Sustainable Strategies Division, Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics, Environmental Protection Agency, MC 7406M, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001; telephone number: 202-564-8854; 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 a federal purchaser or a vendor interested in selling to the federal government. 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:

    Food providers (NAICS code 722310), e.g., Cafeteria Food Services Contractors, Food Concession Contractors, etc.

    Renovators (NAICS code 33333), e.g., General Building Contractors/Operative Builders, Renovation Firms, Individual Contractors, and Special Trade Contractors like Carpenters, Painters, Drywall Workers and Lathers, “Home Improvement” Contractors, etc.

    Commercial and Institutional Building Construction (NAICS code 236220), e.g., Office Building Construction, Warehouse Construction, etc.

    Drywall and Insulation Contractors (NAICS code 238310), e.g., Acoustical ceiling tile and panel installation, etc.

    Flooring Contractors (NAICS code 238330), e.g., Carpet Installation, Resilient Floor Tile or Sheet Installation, etc.

    Janitorial Services (NAICS code 541620), e.g., Office Cleaning Services, Rest Room Cleaning Services, Washroom Sanitation Services, etc.

    Electronic Computer Manufacturing (NAICS code 334111), e.g., manufacturing machinery or equipment that incorporates electronic computers for operation or control purposes and embedded control applications, etc.

    Computer Systems Design Services (NAICS code 541512), e.g., selling computer hardware or software products and systems from retail-like locations, and providing supporting services, such as customized assembly of personal computers, etc.

    Consumer Electronics Repair and Maintenance (NAICS code 811211), e.g., Repairing computers and peripheral equipment, etc.

    Office Supplies and Stationary Stores (NAICS code 453210), e.g., retailing stationery, school supplies, and office supplies via electronic shopping, mail-order, or direct sale, printing business forms, retailing new office furniture, etc.

    Packing and Crating (NAICS code 488991), e.g., packing and preparing goods for shipping, etc.

    B. How can I get copies of this document and other related information?

    The docket for this action, identified by docket identification (ID) number EPA-HQ-OPPT-20[XX]-[insert Docket ID no.], is available at http://www.regulations.gov or at the Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics Docket (OPPT Docket), Environmental Protection Agency Docket Center (EPA/DC), West William Jefferson Clinton Bldg., Rm. 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20001. The Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding federal holidays. The telephone number for the Public Reading Room is (202) 566-1744, and the telephone number for the OPPT Docket is (202) 566-0280. Please review the visitor instructions and additional information about the docket available at http://www2.epa.gov/dockets.

    II. What is EPA's authority?

    On March 19, 2015, the President issued Executive Order 13693, entitled “Planning for Federal Sustainability in the Next Decade” (80 FR 15871) (Ref. 1). Executive Order 13693 maintains federal leadership in sustainability and greenhouse gas emission reductions. Section 3(i) directs federal agencies to promote sustainable acquisition and procurement by ensuring that certain environmental performance and sustainability factors are included to the maximum extent practicable in the planning, award, and execution phases of agency acquisitions. Pursuant to Section 3(i)(iii)(A) of the Executive Order, one of the factors directs agencies to purchase environmentally preferable products or services that meet EPA recommendations for specifications, standards, and ecolabels for use in federal procurement. On June 10, 2015, the Office of Federal Sustainability in the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) issued Implementing Instructions for Executive Order 13693 (Ref. 2). The Implementing Instructions for Executive Order 13693 call on EPA, in consultation with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and CEQ, to provide guidance on recommendations for specifications, standards, and ecolabels for use in federal procurement within 90 days of the issuance of the Implementing Instructions.

    In addition, the Pollution Prevention Act (PPA) (42 U.S.C.A. 13103(b)(11)) requires EPA to “Identify opportunities to use federal procurement to encourage source reduction” and section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (NTTAA) (15 U.S.C. 272) requires federal agencies to “use technical standards that are developed or adopted by voluntary consensus standards bodies, using such technical standards as a means to carry out policy objectives or activities.”

    III. What action is the Agency taking?

    This document describes EPA's approach for providing recommendations to federal purchasers on specifications, environmental performance standards, and ecolabels for environmentally preferable products and services. The federal government is one of the world's largest purchasers. This action will help federal agencies purchase environmentally preferable products and services and reduce public health and environmental impacts associated with the federal government's extensive supply chain.

    Executive Order 13693 directs federal agencies to promote sustainable acquisition and procurement by ensuring that, to the maximum extent practicable, agencies purchase environmentally sustainable products and services by meeting statutory requirements that require a procurement preference for:

    1. Recycled content products designated by the EPA;

    2. Energy and water efficient products and services, such as ENERGY STAR® certified and Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP) designated products, identified by EPA and the Department of Energy (DOE); and

    3. BioPreferred® and biobased products designated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

    The Executive Order further instructs agencies to purchase sustainable products and services identified by EPA programs including:

    1. Significant New Alternative Policy (SNAP) chemicals or other alternatives to ozone-depleting substances and high global warming potential hydrofluorocarbons, where feasible, as identified by SNAP;

    2. WaterSense certified products and services (water efficient products);

    3. Safer Choice certified products (chemically intensive products that contain safer ingredients); and

    4. SmartWay Transport partners and SmartWay products (fuel efficient products and services).

    Federal purchasers can also purchase environmentally preferable products or services that:

    1. Meet or exceed specifications, standards, or labels recommended by EPA; or

    2. Meet environmental performance criteria developed or adopted by voluntary consensus standards bodies consistent with the NTTAA section 12(d) and OMB Circular A-119.

    In 2013, EPA sought comment on Draft Guidelines for Environmental Performance Standards and Ecolabels for Voluntary Use in Federal Procurement (Ref. 3).

    On March 19, 2015, EPA announced the availability of revised Draft EPA Guidelines and the launch of a pilot to test the Draft EPA Guidelines in three building product categories: Furniture; flooring; and paints, coatings and paint removers (Ref. 4). It is expected that the pilot will inform refinements to the Draft EPA Guidelines, and help develop a process by which these Guidelines can be finalized and used to assess standards and ecolabels for use in federal procurement in a wide array of product and service categories.

    The Implementing Instructions for the Executive Order direct EPA to prioritize application of the finalized Guidelines to product and service categories which “represent the largest share of procurement spending across Agencies and potential environmental impact” (Ref. 2, page 56).

    Until the Draft EPA Guidelines are finalized and applied to key product and service categories, EPA is providing interim recommendations. Federal purchasers should utilize EPA's Interim Recommendations to select environmentally preferable products and services. EPA's Interim Recommendations are based on specifications, environmental performance standards, and ecolabels evaluated and currently utilized by federal agencies to assist in their procurement of environmentally preferable products and services. EPA will be initially using specifications, standards and labels information developed by other federal agencies to identify products that have verified sustainability attributes, are readily available in the market, and meet cost and performance needs. EPA's recommendations and further information about the evaluation processes used by these federal agencies will be available at http://www.epa.gov/greenerproducts and in the General Service Administration's Green Procurement Compilation at https://sftool.gov/greenprocurement (Ref. 5). EPA will review its recommendations periodically and update them after considering other federal agency assessments of standards and ecolabels when they become available. EPA's Interim Recommendations will also be updated to integrate any EPA recommendations developed following finalization and application of the Draft EPA Guidelines to specific product and service categories.

    The Implementing Instructions state that “where there is no specification, standard, or label recommended by EPA, an agency may elect to use other open and voluntary standards . . .” to identify and procure environmentally preferable products and/or services, provided that they have conducted an assessment to ensure that the standard or ecolabel meets the requirements stipulated in the NTTAA, OMB Circular A-119 (Ref. 6), and Section II of the EPA Draft Guidelines or any subsequent revisions to those Guidelines (Ref. 2, page 56). The NTTAA requires that all agencies use standards developed by voluntary consensus standards bodies instead of government-unique standards unless inconsistent with applicable law or otherwise impractical. OMB Circular A-119 provides guidance on federal use of voluntary consensus standards and on conformity assessment. Because the NTTAA and OMB Circular A-119 do not address environmental performance, the Implementing Instructions point procurement officials to Section II of the EPA Draft Guidelines on Environmental Effectiveness and any subsequent revisions to those Guidelines (Ref. 2, pages 56-57). The Implementing Instructions direct agencies to consult with and share these assessments with EPA, and direct EPA to make these assessments available on its Web site.

    Section 3(l)(i) of Executive Order 13693 includes requirements regarding procurement of environmentally sustainable electronic products. To meet the requirements of sections 3(i)(iii) and 3(l)(i) of the Executive Order, the Implementing Instructions state that agencies must acquire products that meet or exceed the specifications, standards, or labels recommended by EPA as posted on its Web site. As indicated in the Implementing Instructions, federal purchasers may continue to use the Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT)® product registry, or other methods to identify products that have been third-party verified as having met environmental performance criteria developed or adopted by voluntary consensus standards bodies consistent with section 12(d) of the NTTAA and OMB Circular A-119. However, the Implementing Instructions note that at this time CEQ is not aware of any product registries other than EPEAT for environmentally sustainable electronic products. It is possible that in the future other options may be developed that align with EPA Guidelines and support the electronic stewardship mandates of section 3(l) of Executive Order 13693. Any future tools will have to meet or exceed current levels of sustainable and environmental performance.

    Once the EPA Draft Guidelines for Environmental Performance Standards and Ecolabels for Voluntary Use in Federal Procurement are finalized, EPA will apply the Guidelines to product and service categories which “represent the largest share of procurement spending across agencies and potential environmental impact,” per the Implementing Instructions. It is expected that electronics may be in the next group of additional product categories to which the Guidelines could be applied. When the Guidelines are applied to the electronics category, stakeholders will be asked to volunteer other specifications, standards and ecolabels to be reviewed against the Guidelines. EPA will review additional specifications, standards and/or ecolabels to determine if they meet or exceed the current sustainability mandate for electronics and conform to the EPA Guidelines.

    IV. References

    The following is a listing of the documents that are referenced in this document. The docket includes these documents and other information considered by EPA, even if the referenced document is not physically located in the docket. For assistance in locating these other documents, please consult the technical person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

    1. The President. Executive Order 13693 of March 19, 2015; Planning for Federal Sustainability in the Next Decade. Federal Register (80 FR 15869, March 25, 2015). Available at http://www.thefederalregister.org/fdsys/pkg/FR-2015-03-25/pdf/2015-07016.pdf. 2. The White House Council on Environmental Quality, Office of Federal Sustainability. Implementing Instructions for Executive Order 13693 Planning for Federal Sustainability in the Next Decade. June 10, 2015. Available at https://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/docs/eo_13693_implementing_instructions_june_10_2015.pdf. 3. EPA. Draft Guidelines for Environmental Performance Standards and Ecolabels for Voluntary Use in Federal Procurement; Notice of Availability and Request for Comments. Federal Register (78 FR 70938, November 27, 2013; FRL-9394-7). Available in EPA-HQ-OPPT-2013-0579 at http://www.regulations.gov. 4. EPA. Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection and Comment Request; Assessment of Environmental Performance Standards and Ecolabels for Federal Procurement; Notice. Federal Register (80 FR 14372, March 19, 2015; FRL-9923-58). Available at http://www.thefederalregister.org/fdsys/pkg/FR-2015-03-19/pdf/2015-06275.pdf. 5. General Services Administration (GSA) Federal Acquisition Service, Green Procurement Compilation (GPC). Available at https://sftool.gov/greenprocurement. 6. Office of Management and Budget (OMB). OMB Circular A-119 (Revised). Federal Participation in the Development and Use of Voluntary Consensus Standards and in Conformity Assessment Activities. February 10, 1998. Available at https://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/circulars_a119/. Authority:

    42 U.S.C.A. 13103(b)(11), 15 U.S.C. 272 note, and Executive Order 13693 of March 19, 2015.

    Dated: September 17, 2015. James J. Jones, Assistant Administrator, Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24456 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [EPA-HQ-OPPT-2003-0010; FRL-9934-12] Receipt of Test Data under the Toxic Substances Control Act AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    EPA is announcing its receipt of test data submitted pursuant to an enforceable consent agreement (ECA)/Order issued by EPA under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). As required by TSCA, this document identifies each chemical substance and/or mixture for which test data have been received; the uses or intended uses of such chemical substance and/or mixture; and describes the nature of the test data received. Each chemical substance and/or mixture related to this announcement is identified in Unit I. under SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For technical information contact: Kathy Calvo, Chemical Control Division (7405M), Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001; telephone number: (202) 564-8089; email address: [email protected].

    For general information contact: The TSCA-Hotline, ABVI-Goodwill, 422 South Clinton Ave., Rochester, NY 14620; telephone number: (202) 554-1404; email address: [email protected]

    I. Chemical Substances and/or Mixtures

    Information about the following chemical substances and/or mixtures is provided in Unit IV.: 1,2-Ethylene Dichloride, (a/k/a Ethylene Dichloride) (CAS RN 107-06-2).

    II. Federal Register Publication Requirement

    Section 4(d) of TSCA (15 U.S.C. 2603(d)) requires EPA to publish a notice in the Federal Register reporting the receipt of test data submitted pursuant to ECAs/Orders promulgated under TSCA section 4 (15 U.S.C. 2603).

    III. Docket Information

    A docket, identified by the docket identification (ID) number EPA-HQ-OPPT-2003-0010, has been established for this Federal Register document that announces the receipt of data. Upon EPA's completion of its quality assurance review, the test data received will be added to the docket for the ECA/Order that required the test data. Use the docket ID number provided in Unit IV. to access the test data in the docket for the related ECA/Order.

    The docket for this Federal Register document and the docket for each related ECA/Order is available electronically at http://www.regulations.gov or in person at the Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics Docket (OPPT Docket), Environmental Protection Agency Docket Center (EPA/DC), West William Jefferson Clinton Bldg., Rm. 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC. The Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The telephone number for the Public Reading Room is (202) 566-1744, and the telephone number for the OPPT Docket is (202) 566-0280. Please review the visitor instructions and additional information about the docket available at http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

    IV. Test Data Received

    This unit contains the information required by TSCA section 4(d) for the test data received by EPA.

    1,2-Ethylene Dichloride, (a/k/a Ethylene Dichloride) (CAS RN 107-06-2)

    1. Chemical Use(s): Chemical intermediate principally in the production of vinyl chloride, but also vinylidene chloride, 1,1,1-trichloroethane, trichloroethylene, tetrachloroethylene, aziridines, and ethylene diamines. It is also used as a solvent.

    2. Applicable ECA/Order: 1,2-Ethylene Dichloride (EDC).

    3. Test Data Received: The following listing describes the nature of the test data received. The test data will be added to the docket for the applicable ECA/Order and can be found by referencing the docket ID number provided. EPA reviews of test data will be added to the same docket upon completion.

    a. Reproductive Toxicity (oral)/Neurotoxicity Study. The docket ID number assigned to this data is EPA-HQ-OPPT-2003-0010.

    b. Physiologically-Based Pharmacokinetics (PBPK) Modeling of Reproductive Toxicity (oral)/Neurotoxicity Study. The docket ID number assigned to this data is EPA-HQ-OPPT-2003-0010.

    Authority:

    15 U.S.C. 2601 et seq.

    Dated: September 18, 2015. Maria J. Doa, Director, Chemical Control Division, Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24450 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0386; FRL-9933-68] Pesticide Registration Review; Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments for Sulfonylureas and Certain Other Pesticides; Notice of Availability and Request for Comment AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    This notice announces the availability of and opens a public comment period on EPA's draft human health and ecological risk assessments for the registration review of a group of pesticides known collectively as sulfonylureas (SUs) that are identified individually in this document in Table 1 of Unit III, as well as additional chemicals identified in Table 2 of Unit III. This notice also announces both the opening of the registration review docket and the availability of the registration review human health and ecological risk assessments for antimycin A and imazosulfuron. Registration review is EPA's periodic review of pesticide registrations to ensure that each pesticide continues to satisfy the statutory standard for registration that is the pesticide can perform its intended function without unreasonable adverse effects on human health or the environment. As part of the registration review process, the Agency has completed a comprehensive preliminary human health and ecological risk assessment for the pesticide uses of the identified pesticides. After reviewing comments received during the public comment period, EPA may issue a revised risk assessment, explain any changes to the draft risk assessment, and respond to comments and may request public input on risk mitigation before completing a proposed registration review decision for the identified pesticides. Through this program, EPA is ensuring that the registration of each pesticide is based on current scientific and other knowledge, including its effects on human health and the environment.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before November 24, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by docket identification (ID) number EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0386, 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 athttp://www.epa.gov/dockets.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For pesticide specific information, contact: The Chemical Review Manager listed in Table 1 and Table 2 of Unit III.

    For general questions on the registration review program, contact: Richard Dumas, Pesticide Re-Evaluation Division (7508P), Office of Pesticide Programs, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001; telephone number: (703) 308-8015; email address: [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    I. General Information A. Does this action apply to me?

    This action is directed to the public in general, and may be of interest to a wide range of stakeholders including environmental, human health, farm worker, and agricultural advocates; the chemical industry; pesticide users; and members of the public interested in the sale, distribution, or use of pesticides. Since others also may be interested, the Agency has not attempted to describe all the specific entities that may be affected by this action. If you have any questions regarding the applicability of this action to a particular entity, consult the Chemical Review Manager listed in Table 1 and Table 2 of Unit III.

    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, the Agency 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. Authority

    EPA is conducting the registration review of the pesticides identified in this document pursuant to section 3(g) of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), 7 U.S.C. 136 et seq., and the Procedural Regulations for Registration Review at 40 CFR part 155, subpart C. FIFRA section 3(g) provides, among other things, that the registrations of pesticides are to be reviewed every 15 years. Under FIFRA, a pesticide product may be registered or remain registered only if it meets the statutory standard for registration given in FIFRA section 3(c)(5) (7 U.S.C. 136a(c)(5)). When used in accordance with widespread and commonly recognized practice, the pesticide product must perform its intended function without unreasonable adverse effects on the environment; that is, without any unreasonable risk to man or the environment, or a human dietary risk from residues that result from the use of a pesticide in or on food.

    III. Registration Reviews

    As directed by FIFRA section 3(g), EPA is reviewing the registrations for the pesticides listed in Tables 1 and 2 to ensure that each pesticide on the list continues to satisfy the FIFRA standard for registration—that is, that these pesticides can still be used without unreasonable adverse effects on human health or the environment.

    Table 1—Draft Risk Assessments Being Made Available for Public Comment—Sulfonylureas Registration review case name and No. Docket ID No. Chemical review manager and contact
  • information
  • Bensulfuron-methyl
  • 7216
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2011-0663 Moana Appleyard, [email protected], (703) 308-8175.
    Chlorimuron-ethyl
  • 7403
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2010-0478 Wilhelmena Livingston, [email protected], (703) 308-8025.
    Chlorsulfuron
  • 0631
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2012-0878 Miguel Zavala, [email protected], (703) 347-0504.
    Flazasulfuron
  • 7271
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2011-0994 Ricardo Jones, [email protected], (703) 347-0493.
    Foramsulfuron
  • 7252
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2012-0387 Jose Gayoso, [email protected], (703) 347-8652.
    Halosulfuron-methyl
  • 7233
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2011-0745 Brittany Pruitt, [email protected], (703) 347-0289.
    Imazosulfuron
  • 7285-1
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0625 Caitlin Newcamp, [email protected], (703) 347-0325.
    Iodosulfuron-methyl-sodium
  • 7253
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2012-0717 Katherine St. Clair, [email protected], (703) 347-8778.
    Mesosulfuron-methyl
  • 7277
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2012-0833 Jolene Trujillo, [email protected], (303) 312-6579.
    Metsulfuron-methyl
  • 7205
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2011-0375 Katherine St. Clair, [email protected], (703) 347-8778.
    Nicosulfuron
  • 7227
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2012-0372 Miguel Zavala, [email protected], (703) 347-0504.
    Orthosulfamuron
  • 7270
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2011-0438 Khue Nguyen, [email protected], (703) 347-0248.
    Primisulfuron-methyl
  • 7220
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2011-0844 Christina Scheltema, [email protected], (703) 308-2201.
    Prosulfuron
  • 7235
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2011-1010 Wilhelmena Livingston, [email protected], (703) 308-8025.
    Rimsulfuron
  • 7218
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2012-0178 Jose Gayoso, [email protected], (703) 347-8652.
    Sulfometuron-methyl
  • 3136
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2012-0433 Caitlin Newcamp, [email protected], (703) 347-0325.
    Sulfosulfuron
  • 7247
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2011-0434 Kelly Ballard, [email protected], (703) 305-8126.
    Thifensulfuron-methyl
  • 7206
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2011-0171 Brittany Pruitt, [email protected], (703) 347-0289.
    Triasulfuron
  • 7221
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2012-0115 Margaret Hathaway, [email protected], (703) 305-5076.
    Tribenuron-methyl
  • 7217
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2010-0626 Brittany Pruitt, [email protected], (703) 347-0289.
    Trifloxysulfuron-Sodium
  • 7208
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2013-0409 Kelly Ballard, [email protected], (703) 305-8126.
    Triflusulfuron-methyl
  • 7236
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2012-0605 Matthew Manupella, [email protected], (703) 347-0411.

    A single, streamlined ecological risk assessment document covering the 22 sulfonylurea chemicals listed in Table 1, as well as 22 chemical-specific human health risk assessments separately addressing the same 22 active ingredients are being made available for public review and comment. The sulfonylureas (SUs) are an established and widely used class of agricultural pesticides in the United States. They are used to control broadleaf and grassy weeds and are registered for many agricultural and non-agricultural uses. The ecological risk assessment examines risks from the SUs simultaneously but not cumulatively. The streamlined assessment for SUs will focus on the risks to plants. This single document approach is intended to increase efficiency and consistency in assessing potential risks from this class of compounds. Separate human health risk assessment documents have been generated for each of the SUs because of differences in toxicity endpoints and points of departure.

    Table 2—Draft Risk Assessments Being Made Available for Public Comment—Additional Chemicals Registration review case name and No. Docket ID No. Chemical review manager and contact
  • information
  • Antimycin A
  • 4121
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0480 Christina Scheltema, [email protected], (703) 308-2201.
    Chlorpyrifos-methyl
  • 8011
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2010-0119 Joel Wolf, [email protected], (703) 347-0228.
    Dicrotophos
  • Case 0145
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2008-0440 Khue Nguyen, [email protected], (703) 347-0248.
    Dimethoate
  • 0088
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0059 Kelly Ballard, [email protected], (703) 305-8126.
    Diquat Dibromide
  • 0288
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0846 Bonnie Adler, [email protected], (703) 308-8523.
    Ethoprop
  • 0106
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2008-0560 Tracy Perry, [email protected], (703) 308-0128.
    Fosamine ammonium
  • 2355
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2010-0215 James Parker, [email protected], (703) 306-0469.
    Hexazinone
  • 0266
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0755 Dana L. Friedman, [email protected], (703) 347-8827.
    Methoxyfenozide
  • 7431
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2012-0663 Bonnie Adler, [email protected], (703) 308-8523.
    Profenofos
  • 2540
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2008-0345 Christina Scheltema, [email protected], (703) 308-2201.
    Tebufenozide
  • 7416
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2008-0824 Christina Scheltema, [email protected], (703) 308-2201.
    Terbufos
  • 0109
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2008-0119 Matthew Manupella, [email protected], (703) 347-0411.
    Tribufos
  • 2145
  • EPA-HQ-OPP-2008-0883 Marianne Mannix, [email protected], (703) 347-0275.

    Antimycin A. Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments, Preliminary Work Plan (EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0480). Antimycin A (Fintrol®) is a restricted use pesticide registered for limited aquatic use by the U.S. National Park Service to control invasive species and restore native fish populations. EPA has completed combined scoping and preliminary human health and ecological risk assessments for Antimycin A. These assessments are limited to the current registered uses of Antimycin A in accordance with the Federal label and do not consider endangered species or endocrine effects.

    Chlorpyrifos-methyl. Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments (EPA-HQ-OPP-2010-0119). Chlorpyrifos-methyl is registered as an insecticide used to target and kill a variety of stored grain insects including beetles, weevils, moths, and grain borers. The registered uses of chlorpyrifos-methyl are limited to indoor applications made to the interior of empty grain storage bins or warehouses. EPA conducted a preliminary ecological risk assessment and effects determination and a human health risk assessment. An endangered species assessment was completed and a No Effect determination was made for all listed species, as well as a No Habitat Modification determination for all designated critical habitats for the currently registered uses of chlorpyrifos-methyl. Chlorpyrifos-methyl was not on either initial list of chemicals to be screened under the EDSP, and an endangered species assessment has not been conducted at this time.

    Dicrotophos. Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments (EPA-HQ-OPP-2008-0440). Dicrotophos is an organophosphate insecticide mainly used on cotton and ornamental trees. Dicrotophos is primarily used to target stinkbugs and tarnished plant bugs in cotton growing states. EPA published preliminary human health and ecological risk assessments in 2014 for public comment. EPA has revised its human health risk assessment by revising the Food Quality Protection Act (FQPA) safety factor and its dietary analysis. EPA has identified possible dietary risk for both adults and children, possible spray drift risks, and possible occupational handler risk from both aerial and ground application. EPA has revised its ecological risk assessment by providing additional characterization of potential ecological risk from typical application rates and average foliar residue (i.e., Kenaga) values for mammalian and bird dietary exposure. EPA identified possible ecological risks for the following taxa: Aquatic invertebrates, mammals, birds, and terrestrial invertebrates. An endangered species assessment has not been completed for dicrotophos at this time. Dicrotophos was not on the first list of chemicals for endocrine disruption screening.

    Dimethoate. Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments (EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0059). Dimethoate is a wide spectrum systemic organophosphate insecticide. It is registered for use on a wide variety of agricultural crops, tree crops, ornamentals, and non-cropland adjacent to agricultural fields. There are no residential uses. EPA conducted a comprehensive human health risk assessment and identified potential risks of concern for dietary and occupational exposures. EPA also conducted a screening level ecological risk assessment that addressed all registered use of dimethoate. Potential risks were identified for freshwater, estuarine/marine, and terrestrial invertebrates, birds, and mammals. An endangered species assessment has not been completed for dimethoate at this time. Dimethoate was evaluated for its potential to affect endocrine systems in mammals and wildlife and the results of the agency's review are found in the Weight of Evidence review in this registration review docket.

    Diquat Dibromide. Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments (EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0846). Diquat dibromide is a non-selective contact algicide, defoliant, desiccant, and herbicide. As an herbicide/algicide it is registered for use to control weeds in non-crop (including residential) and aquatic areas. As a desiccant/defoliant, it is registered for use on seed crops and potatoes. The Agency issued a FWP for diquat dibromide in March 2011, and data were called in. The reviews of those data are incorporated into the draft risk assessments. The ecological risk assessment identifies risk of concern for both terrestrial and aquatic organisms. The human health risk assessment identifies risks of concerns for residential and occupations handlers via inhalation, and dermal concerns for workers after application. Diquat dibromide was not on either initial list of chemicals to be screened under the Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program (EDSP), and an endangered species assessment has not been conducted at this time.

    Ethoprop. Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments (EPA-HQ-OPP-2008-0560). Ethoprop is an organophosphate, restricted use insecticide-nematicide registered for use on a variety of crops, including potatoes and sugarcane. The Agency has completed draft risk assessments for ethoprop, which identified both human health and ecological risks of concern. These assessments do not consider endangered species. Ethoprop was evaluated for its potential to affect endocrine systems in mammals and wildlife and the results of the agency's review are found in the Weight of Evidence review in this registration review docket.

    Fosamine Ammonium. Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments (EPA-HQ-OPP-2010-0215). Fosamine ammonium is an herbicide which is applied to prevent growth of undesirable seedlings and saplings of brush and vines. Fosamine ammonium is registered for use on non-agricultural rights-of way, industrial sites, fencerows, and pine plantations. It is used for general weed control in uncultivated nonagricultural areas (e.g., airports, highway, railroad and utility rights-of-way, and sewage disposal areas), uncultivated agricultural areas (e.g., non-crop producing farmyards, fuel storage areas, fencerows) and industrial sites (e.g., lumberyards, pipeline and tank farms). The Agency has conducted a human health risk assessment for fosamine ammonium. The Agency has also conducted a quantitative ecological risk assessment, which includes a screening-level listed species assessment. Fosamine ammonium was not on either initial list of chemicals to be screened under the EDSP, and an endangered species assessment has not been conducted at this time.

    Hexazinone. Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments (EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0755). Hexazinone is a broad spectrum herbicide registered for use on food and feed crops (including alfalfa, blueberry, pineapple, sugarcane), non-food crops (including Christmas tree plantations, industrial areas, recreational areas), drainage systems, and in forestry (including conifer release, reforestation, forest trees). EPA conducted a comprehensive human health risk assessment and did not identify any risks of concern for dietary or residential exposure. Most occupational risks identified may be addressed with additional levels of personal protective equipment, though some scenarios still pose concerns considering engineering controls. EPA also conducted a preliminary ecological risk assessment that identified potential risks, mainly to terrestrial and aquatic plants. Hexazinone was not on either initial list of chemicals to be screened under the EDSP, and an endangered species assessment has not been conducted at this time.

    Methoxyfenozide. Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments (EPA-HQ-OPP-2013-0606). Methoxyfenozide is a diacylhydrazine insecticide and insect growth regulator registered for use on a variety of agricultural and non-agricultural sites. The ecological assessment indicates that methoxyfenozide has the potential for direct acute and chronic effects on listed and non-listed freshwater and estuarine/marine invertebrates. The likelihood of direct adverse effects on birds, terrestrial-phase amphibians, reptiles, mammals, fish, aquatic-phase amphibians, and terrestrial and aquatic plants as a result of registered methoxyfenozide use is expected to be low. However, taxa that depend on aquatic invertebrate species may be indirectly affected. The endangered species protection bulletin for methoxyfenozide can be found by following the links at http://www.epa.gov/oppfead1/endanger/bulletins.htm). The human health risk assessment considered both current and pending proposed uses of methoxyfenozide, and the Agency concluded there were no risks of concern identified for any route or duration of exposure. Methoxyfenozide was not included in either the first or second list of chemicals to be screened for endocrine disruptor potential.

    Profenofos. Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments (EPA-HQ-OPP-2008-0345). Profenofos (Curacron®) is an organophosphate, restricted use insecticide registered for use on cotton. However, use has declined significantly since 2000, and EPA has not found any reports of use since 2011. The Agency has completed preliminary human health and ecological risk assessments for profenofos. Profenofos was not on either initial list of chemicals to be screened under the EDSP, and an endangered species assessment has not been conducted at this time.

    Tebufenozide. Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments (EPA-HQ-OPP-2008-0824). Tebufenozide (Confirm®) is an insect growth regulator registered for use on a variety of crops, mint, ornamentals, tree and nut fruit and in forestry. EPA has completed preliminary human health and ecological risk assessments for tebufenozide. Tebufenozide was not on either initial list of chemicals to be screened under the EDSP, and an endangered species assessment has not been conducted at this time.

    Terbufos. Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments (EPA-HQ-OPP-2008-0119). Terbufos is a systemic organophosphate insecticide-nematicide used to control a variety of pests on corn (field and sweet corn), grain sorghum, and sugar beets. EPA conducted a dietary and occupational human health risk assessment. The agency identified dietary and occupational risks. EPA also conducted a comprehensive ecological risk assessment and found risks to both aquatic and terrestrial animals. Endangered species, EDSP and pollinator assessments have not been completed for terbufos at this time.

    Tribufos. Draft Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessments (EPA-HQ-OPP-2008-0883). Tribufos is an organophospate chemical used as a pre-harvest desiccant on cotton. The Environmental Protection Agency conducted comprehensive human health and ecological risk assessments, which identified human health and ecological risks. Tribufos was not on either initial list of chemicals to be screened under the EDSP, and an endangered species assessment has not been conducted at this time.

    Pursuant to 40 CFR 155.53(c), EPA is providing an opportunity, through this notice of availability, for interested parties to provide comments and input concerning the Agency's draft human health and ecological risk assessments for the pesticides identified in this document. Such comments and input could address, among other things, the Agency's risk assessment methodologies and assumptions, as applied to this draft risk assessment. The Agency will consider all comments received during the public comment period and make changes, as appropriate, to the draft human health and ecological risk assessment. EPA will then issue a revised risk assessment, explain any changes to the draft risk assessment, and respond to comments. In the Federal Register notice announcing the availability of the revised risk assessment, if the revised risk assessment indicates risks of concern, the Agency may provide a comment period for the public to submit suggestions for mitigating the risk identified in the revised risk assessment before developing a proposed registration review decision on the pesticides identified in this document.

    1. Other related information. Additional information on the pesticides identified in this document is available on the Pesticide Registration Review Status Web page. Information on the Agency's registration review program and its implementing regulation is available at http://www.epa.gov/oppsrrd1/registration_review.

    2. Information submission requirements. Anyone may submit data or information in response to this document. To be considered during a pesticide's registration review, the submitted data or information must meet the following requirements:

    • To ensure that EPA will consider data or information submitted, interested persons must submit the data or information during the comment period. The Agency may, at its discretion, consider data or information submitted at a later date.

    • The data or information submitted must be presented in a legible and useable form. For example, an English translation must accompany any material that is not in English and a written transcript must accompany any information submitted as an audiographic or videographic record. Written material may be submitted in paper or electronic form.

    • Submitters must clearly identify the source of any submitted data or information.

    • Submitters may request the Agency to reconsider data or information that the Agency rejected in a previous review. However, submitters must explain why they believe the Agency should reconsider the data or information in the pesticide's registration review.

    As provided in 40 CFR 155.58, the registration review docket for each pesticide case will remain publicly accessible through the duration of the registration review process; that is, until all actions required in the final decision on the registration review case have been completed.

    Authority:

    7 U.S.C. 136 et seq.

    Dated: September 21, 2015. Richard P. Keigwin, Jr., Director, Pesticide Re-Evaluation Division, Office of Pesticide Programs.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24452 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    FARM CREDIT SYSTEM INSURANCE CORPORATION Farm Credit System Insurance Corporation Board; Regular Meeting AGENCY:

    Farm Credit System Insurance Corporation Board.

    ACTION:

    Regular meeting notice.

    SUMMARY:

    Notice is hereby given of the regular meeting of the Farm Credit System Insurance Corporation Board (Board).

    DATES:

    The meeting of the Board will be held at the offices of the Farm Credit Administration in McLean, Virginia, on October 1, 2015, from 9:30 a.m. until such time as the Board concludes its business.

    ADDRESSES:

    Farm Credit System Insurance Corporation, 1501 Farm Credit Drive, McLean, Virginia 22102. Submit attendance requests via email to [email protected] See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION for further information about attendance requests.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Dale L. Aultman, Secretary to the Farm Credit System Insurance Corporation Board, (703) 883-4009, TTY (703) 883-4056.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Parts of this meeting of the Board will be open to the public (limited space available), and parts will be closed to the public. Please send an email to [email protected] at least 24 hours before the meeting. In your email include: name, postal address, entity you are representing (if applicable), and telephone number. You will receive an email confirmation from us. Please be prepared to show a photo identification when you arrive. If you need assistance for accessibility reasons, or if you have any questions, contact Dale L. Aultman, Secretary to the Farm Credit System Insurance Corporation Board, at (703) 883-4009. The matters to be considered at the meeting are:

    Closed Session • Confidential Report on System Performance Open Session A. Approval of Minutes • June 11, 2015 B. Business Reports • FCSIC Quarterly Financial Report • Report on Insured and Other Obligations • Quarterly Report on Annual Performance Plan C. New Business • Annual Performance Plan FY 2016-2017 • Proposed 2017 and 2018 Budgets • Insurance Fund Progress Review and Setting of Premium Range Guidance for 2016 Dated: September 22, 2015. Dale L. Aultman, Secretary, Farm Credit System Insurance Corporation Board.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24476 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6710-01-P
    FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION [OMB 3060-0718] Information Collection Being Reviewed by the Federal Communications Commission AGENCY:

    Federal Communications Commission.

    ACTION:

    Notice and request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    As part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork burdens, and as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520), the Federal Communications Commission (FCC or Commission) invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on the following information collections. 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 collection burden on 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 PRA that does not display a valid OMB control number.

    DATES:

    Written PRA comments should be submitted on or before November 24, 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: 3060-0718.

    Title: Part 101 Rule Sections Governing the Terrestrial Microwave Fixed Radio Service.

    Form Number: N/A.

    Type of Review: Extension of a currently approved collection.

    Respondents: Business or other for-profit entities, not-for-profit institutions, and state, local, or tribal government.

    Number of Respondents: 9,500 respondents; 27,342 responses.

    Estimated Time per Response: .25-3 hours.

    Frequency of Response: On occasion and every 10 year reporting requirements, third party disclosure requirement, and recordkeeping requirement.

    Obligation to Respond: Required to obtain or retain benefits or retain benefits. Voluntary in case of Rural Microwave Flexibility Policy. Statutory authority for this information collection is contained in 47 U.S.C. 151, 154(i), 301, 303(f), 303(g), 303(r), 307, 308, 309, 310, and 316.

    Total Annual Burden: 36,223 hours.

    Total Annual Cost: $1,534,725.

    Privacy Impact Assessment: No impact(s).

    Nature and Extent of Confidentiality: There is no need for confidentiality with this collection of information.

    Needs and Uses: The Commission will submit this information collection to the Office of Management and Budget for a three-year extension of OMB Control Number 3060-0718. Part 101 rule sections require respondents to report or disclose information to the Commission or third parties, respectively, and to maintain records. These requirements are necessary for the Commission staff to carry out its duties to determine technical, legal and other qualifications of applicants to operate and remain licensed to operate a station(s) in the common carrier and/or private fixed microwave services. In addition, the information is used to determine whether the public interest, convenience, and necessity are being served as required by 47 U.S.C. 309 and to ensure that applicants and licenses comply with ownership and transfer restrictions imposed by 47 U.S.C. 310. Without this information, the Commission would not be able to carry out its statutory responsibilities.

    In November 2012, FCC modified this collection to include the voluntary requirements of the Rural Microwave Flexibility Policy that were adopted by the FCC on August 3, 2012, the FCC adopted and released a Backhaul Second Report and Order, FCC 12-87, WT Docket No. 10-153. This Policy directs the Wireless Telecommunication Bureau to favorably consider waivers of the requirements for payload capacity of equipment. The voluntary requirements will continue with this PRA collection. There is no change in the third party disclosure requirements.

    Federal Communications Commission. Marlene H. Dortch, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24347 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6712-01-P
    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 October 23, 2015.

    A. Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago (Colette A. Fried, Assistant Vice President) 230 South LaSalle Street, Chicago, Illinois 60690-1414:

    1. Albany Bancshares, Inc., Albany, Illinois; to acquire 100 percent of the voting shares of Port Byron State Bank, Port Byron, Illinois.

    Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, September 22, 2015. Michael J. Lewandowski, Associate Secretary of the Board.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24469 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6210-01-P
    FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM Change in Bank Control Notices; Acquisitions of Shares of a Bank or Bank Holding Company

    The notificants listed below have applied under the Change in Bank Control Act (12 U.S.C. 1817(j)) and § 225.41 of the Board's Regulation Y (12 CFR 225.41) to acquire shares of a bank or bank holding company. The factors that are considered in acting on the notices are set forth in paragraph 7 of the Act (12 U.S.C. 1817(j)(7)).

    The notices are available for immediate inspection at the Federal Reserve Bank indicated. The notices also will be available for inspection at the offices of the Board of Governors. Interested persons may express their views in writing to the Reserve Bank indicated for that notice or to the offices of the Board of Governors. Comments must be received not later than October 13, 2015.

    A. Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland (Nadine Wallman, Vice President) 1455 East Sixth Street, Cleveland, Ohio 44101-2566:

    1. Garth Rex Greer, London, Kentucky, a member of the Greer Family Control Group; to individually acquire voting shares of First National Financial Corporation, and thereby indirectly acquire voting shares of First National Bank, both in Manchester, Kentucky.

    B. Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City (Dennis Denney, Assistant Vice President) 1 Memorial Drive, Kansas City, Missouri 64198-0001:

    1. William R. Docking, Arkansas City, Kansas; Thomas R. Docking and Brian T. Docking, both of Wichita, Kansas; to retain voting shares of Docking Bancshares, Inc., and thereby indirectly retain voting shares of Union State Bank, Arkansas City, Kansas, and City Bank & Trust Company, Guymon, Oklahoma.

    Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, September 22, 2015. Michael J. Lewandowski, Associate Secretary of the Board.
    [FR Doc. 2015-24369 Filed 9-24-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6210-01-P
    FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request AGENCY:

    Federal Trade Commission (“FTC” or “Commission”).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The FTC intends to ask the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) to extend for an additional three years the current Paperwork Reduction Act (“PRA”) clearance for information collection requirements contained in the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act Rule (“COPPA Rule” or “Rule”), which will expire on February 29, 2016.

    DATES:

    Comments must be filed by November 24, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Interested parties may file a comment online or on paper, by following the instructions in the Request for Comment part of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section below. Write “COPPA Rule: Paperwork Comment, FTC File No. P155408” on your comment, a