Federal Register Vol. 80, No.66,

Federal Register Volume 80, Issue 66 (April 7, 2015)

Page Range18515-18772
FR Document

80_FR_66
Current View
Page and SubjectPDF
80 FR 18515 - World Autism Awareness Day, 2015PDF
80 FR 18517 - Delegation of Authority Under the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015PDF
80 FR 18652 - Sunshine Act Meeting; National Science BoardPDF
80 FR 18662 - Sunshine Act MeetingPDF
80 FR 18664 - Sunshine Act MeetingPDF
80 FR 18650 - Sunshine Act MeetingPDF
80 FR 18628 - Issuance of Priority Review Voucher; Rare Pediatric Disease ProductPDF
80 FR 18629 - Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies: Modifications and Revisions; Guidance for Industry; AvailabilityPDF
80 FR 18519 - Amendment of Restricted Area Boundary Descriptions; Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WAPDF
80 FR 18584 - Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to Commercial Fishing Operations; Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan Regulations; CorrectionPDF
80 FR 18552 - Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Reef Fish Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico; Red Grouper Recreational Management MeasuresPDF
80 FR 18641 - Proposed Collection; 60-day Comment Request: Identifying Experts in Prevention Science Methods To Include on NIH Review Panels (OD)PDF
80 FR 18598 - Information Collection; Community Forest and Open Space ProgramPDF
80 FR 18606 - Applications for New Awards; Vocational Rehabilitation Services Projects for American Indians With DisabilitiesPDF
80 FR 18654 - Advisory Committee on the Medical Uses of Isotopes; Call for NominationsPDF
80 FR 18655 - Advisory Committee on the Medical Uses of Isotopes: Meeting NoticePDF
80 FR 18643 - Intent To Request Renewal From OMB of One Current Public Collection of Information; Maryland Three Airports: Enhanced Security Procedures for Operations at Certain Airports in the Washington, DC, Metropolitan Area Flight Restricted Zone 1PDF
80 FR 18675 - Bureau of Political-Military Affairs, Directorate of Defense Trade Controls: Notifications to the Congress of Proposed Commercial Export LicensesPDF
80 FR 18652 - In the Matter of ATC Group Services, Inc.PDF
80 FR 18627 - Advisory Committee on the Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program EvaluationPDF
80 FR 18605 - Community Bank Advisory Council MeetingPDF
80 FR 18604 - Certain Oil Country Tubular Goods From the People's Republic of China: Final Results of Expedited First Sunset Review of the Antidumping Duty OrderPDF
80 FR 18602 - Lightweight Thermal Paper From Germany: Final Results of the Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2012-2013PDF
80 FR 18603 - Lightweight Thermal Paper From Germany: Rescission of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2013-2014PDF
80 FR 18627 - Tribal Consultation MeetingsPDF
80 FR 18674 - Advisory Committee on International Economic Policy Notice of Charter RenewalPDF
80 FR 18535 - Additional Air Quality Designations and Technical Amendment To Correct Inadvertent Error in Air Quality Designations for the 2012 Primary Annual Fine Particle (PM2.5PDF
80 FR 18551 - Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; 2015 Commercial Accountability Measure and Closure for Blueline Tilefish in the South Atlantic RegionPDF
80 FR 18594 - Notice of Funds Availability: Inviting Applications for the Foreign Market Development Cooperator ProgramPDF
80 FR 18553 - Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Northern Rockfish in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management AreaPDF
80 FR 18596 - Notice of Funds Availability: Inviting Applications for the Market Access ProgramPDF
80 FR 18588 - Notice of Funds Availability: Inviting Applications for the Emerging Markets ProgramPDF
80 FR 18643 - Distant Water Tuna Fleet Manning ExemptionPDF
80 FR 18554 - Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pacific Cod by Catcher/Processors Using Hook-and-Line Gear in the Western Regulatory Area of the Gulf of AlaskaPDF
80 FR 18647 - Standard on Commercial Diving Operations; Extension of the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Approval of Information Collection (Paperwork) RequirementsPDF
80 FR 18649 - Asbestos in Construction Standard; Extension of the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Approval of Information Collection (Paperwork) RequirementsPDF
80 FR 18591 - Notice of Funds Availability: Inviting Applications for the Quality Samples ProgramPDF
80 FR 18586 - Notice of Funds Availability: Inviting Applications for the Technical Assistance for Specialty Crops ProgramPDF
80 FR 18674 - U.S. Department of State Advisory Committee on Private International Law (ACPIL): Public Meeting on Electronic CommercePDF
80 FR 18616 - Combined Notice of FilingsPDF
80 FR 18611 - Combined Notice of Filings.PDF
80 FR 18613 - Combined Notice of Filings #1PDF
80 FR 18612 - Combined Notice of Filings #1PDF
80 FR 18526 - Annual Update to Fee Schedule for the Use of Government Lands by Hydropower LicenseesPDF
80 FR 18614 - Lock 11 Hydro Partners; Notice of Preliminary Permit Application Accepted for Filing and Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Competing ApplicationsPDF
80 FR 18618 - Richard Bertea; Notice of Termination of License (Minor Project) By Implied Surrender and Soliciting Comments and ProtestsPDF
80 FR 18617 - Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company, LLC; Notice of ApplicationPDF
80 FR 18615 - Texas Gas Transmission, LLC; Notice of FilingPDF
80 FR 18519 - Federal Awarding Agency Regulatory Implementation of Office of Management and Budget's Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards; Correction of RIN NumberPDF
80 FR 18674 - Notice of Charter Renewal for the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) Scientific Advisory BoardPDF
80 FR 18620 - Proposed Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment RequestPDF
80 FR 18706 - Agency Requests for Renewal of a Previously Approved Information Collection(s): Maritime Administration Service Obligation Compliance Annual ReportPDF
80 FR 18645 - Delegation of Authority for the Office of Public and Indian HousingPDF
80 FR 18675 - The U.S. National Commission for UNESCO; Notice of Renewal of Committee CharterPDF
80 FR 18704 - Requested Administrative Waiver of the Coastwise Trade Laws: Vessel PHANTOM; Invitation for Public CommentsPDF
80 FR 18705 - Requested Administrative Waiver of the Coastwise Trade Laws: Vessel SHIP FACED; Invitation for Public CommentsPDF
80 FR 18644 - Order of Succession for the Office of Public and Indian HousingPDF
80 FR 18704 - Requested Administrative Waiver of the Coastwise Trade Laws: Vessel PACIFIC PEARL; Invitation for Public CommentsPDF
80 FR 18705 - Requested Administrative Waiver of the Coastwise Trade Laws: Vessel OCTOPUS; Invitation for Public CommentsPDF
80 FR 18610 - Update on Reimbursement for Costs of Remedial Action at Active Uranium and Thorium Processing SitesPDF
80 FR 18556 - Recreational Off-Highway Vehicles (ROVs); Notice of Extension of Comment PeriodPDF
80 FR 18697 - Qualification of Drivers; Application for Exemptions; HearingPDF
80 FR 18696 - Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; VisionPDF
80 FR 18690 - Hours of Service (HOS) of Drivers; Application for Renewal and Expansion of American Pyrotechnics Association (APA) Exemption From the 14-Hour Rule During Independence Day CelebrationsPDF
80 FR 18693 - Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; VisionPDF
80 FR 18681 - Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications; Diabetes MellitusPDF
80 FR 18620 - Change in Bank Control Notices; Acquisitions of Shares of a Bank or Bank Holding CompanyPDF
80 FR 18624 - Formations of, Acquisitions by, and Mergers of Bank Holding CompaniesPDF
80 FR 18620 - Notice of Proposals To Engage in Permissible Nonbanking Activities or To Acquire Companies That Are Engaged in Permissible Nonbanking Activities; CorrectionPDF
80 FR 18631 - Privacy Act of 1974; Report of an Altered System of RecordsPDF
80 FR 18599 - Notice of Administrative Settlement Agreement and Order on Consent for Engineering Evaluation/Cost Analysis Nacimiento Mine Site, Santa Fe National Forest, New MexicoPDF
80 FR 18638 - Findings of Research MisconductPDF
80 FR 18646 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Labor Market Information Cooperative AgreementPDF
80 FR 18606 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Lender's Application Process (LAP)PDF
80 FR 18646 - Notice of Lodging Proposed Consent DecreePDF
80 FR 18669 - Hawaii Disaster Number HI-00035PDF
80 FR 18642 - Submission for OMB Review; 30-Day Comment Request; Evaluation of the NHLBI Proteomics Centers Program: Qualitative Interviews (NHLBI)PDF
80 FR 18600 - Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Geographic Partnership ProgramsPDF
80 FR 18556 - Small Business Mentor Protégé Program; Small Business Size Regulations; Government Contracting Programs; 8(a) Business Development/Small Disadvantaged Business Status Determinations; HUBZone Program; Women-Owned Small Business Federal Contract Program; Rules of Procedure Governing Cases Before the Office of Hearings and AppealsPDF
80 FR 18598 - Roadless Area Conservation; National Forest System Lands in ColoradoPDF
80 FR 18667 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NASDAQ OMX PHLX LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change To Amend Section (a)(iv) of Rule 703, Financial Responsibility and ReportingPDF
80 FR 18669 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Request and Comment RequestPDF
80 FR 18707 - Clinical Science Research and Development Service Cooperative Studies Scientific Evaluation Committee; Notice of MeetingPDF
80 FR 18699 - Response to Comments on Updates to National Transit Database Annual Information CollectionPDF
80 FR 18707 - Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans, Notice of MeetingPDF
80 FR 18605 - Cancellation of Meeting of Advisory Committee on Commercial Remote SensingPDF
80 FR 18639 - Meeting of the National Advisory Committee on Children and DisastersPDF
80 FR 18522 - Revisions to the Export Administration Regulations Based on the 2014 Missile Technology Control Regime Plenary AgreementsPDF
80 FR 18640 - Submission for OMB Review; 30-day Comment Request; National Institute of Health Neurobiobank Tissue Access RequestPDF
80 FR 18706 - Commonwealth Bank, F.S.B., Mt. Sterling, Kentucky; Approval of Conversion ApplicationPDF
80 FR 18641 - National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders; Notice of MeetingPDF
80 FR 18643 - National Cancer Institute Notice of Charter RenewalPDF
80 FR 18664 - Proposed Collection; Comment RequestPDF
80 FR 18662 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NASDAQ OMX PHLX LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change To Amend Rule 3301(h)PDF
80 FR 18665 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; ISE Gemini, LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change To Share Member-Designated Risk Settings in the Trading System With Clearing MembersPDF
80 FR 18673 - Privacy Act of 1974, as Amended; Computer Matching Program (SSA/Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service (IRS))-Match Number 1305PDF
80 FR 18620 - Federal Advisory Committee Act; Downloadable Security Technology Advisory CommitteePDF
80 FR 18626 - Agency Forms Undergoing Paperwork Reduction Act ReviewPDF
80 FR 18624 - Agency Forms Undergoing Paperwork Reduction Act ReviewPDF
80 FR 18679 - Notice of Intent To Rule on Application To Impose and Use the Revenue From a Passenger Facility Charge at Tampa International Airport, Tampa, FloridaPDF
80 FR 18526 - Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans; IdahoPDF
80 FR 18557 - Effluent Limitations Guidelines and Standards for the Oil and Gas Extraction Point Source CategoryPDF
80 FR 18680 - Notice of Final Federal Agency Actions on US 183 From US 290 to SH 71 (Bergstrom Expressway) in TexasPDF
80 FR 18639 - Reimbursement Rates for Calendar Year 2015PDF
80 FR 18742 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; 12-Month Finding on a Petition To List Humboldt Marten as an Endangered or Threatened SpeciesPDF
80 FR 18528 - Designation of Areas for Air Quality Planning Purposes; California; San Joaquin Valley; Reclassification as Serious Nonattainment for the 1997 PM2.5PDF
80 FR 18580 - NASA FAR Supplement Regulatory Review No. 3PDF
80 FR 18655 - Applications and Amendments to Facility Operating Licenses and Combined Licenses Involving Proposed No Significant Hazards Considerations and Containing Sensitive Unclassified Non-Safeguards Information and Order Imposing Procedures for Access to Sensitive Unclassified Non-Safeguards InformationPDF
80 FR 18601 - Further Proposed Interpretations of Parts of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012PDF
80 FR 18706 - Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee; MeetingsPDF
80 FR 18619 - Notice of Availability of Draft Scientific Assessment for Public CommentPDF
80 FR 18710 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Endangered Species Status for the Big Sandy Crayfish and the Guyandotte River CrayfishPDF

Issue

80 66 Tuesday, April 7, 2015 Contents Agriculture Agriculture Department See

Commodity Credit Corporation

See

Forest Service

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection NOTICES Meetings: Community Bank Advisory Council, 18605-18606 2015-07977 Centers Disease Centers for Disease Control and Prevention NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 18624-18627 2015-07839 2015-07840 Children Children and Families Administration NOTICES Advisory Committee Renewals: Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program Evaluation, 18627 2015-07978 Meetings: Tribal Consultation Meetings, 18627-18628 2015-07958 Coast Guard Coast Guard NOTICES Distant Water Tuna Fleet Manning Exemption Policy Guidance, 18643 2015-07939 Commerce Commerce Department See

First Responder Network Authority

See

Industry and Security Bureau

See

International Trade Administration

See

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Geographic Partnership Programs, 18600-18601 2015-07888
Commodity Credit Commodity Credit Corporation NOTICES Funding Availability: Emerging Markets Program, 18588-18591 2015-07940 Foreign Market Development Cooperator Program, 18594-18596 2015-07943 Market Access Program, 18596-18598 2015-07941 Quality Samples Program, 18591-18594 2015-07935 Technical Assistance for Specialty Crops Program, 18586-18588 2015-07934 Comptroller Comptroller of the Currency NOTICES Conversion Applications; Approvals: Commonwealth Bank, F.S.B., Mt. Sterling, KY, 18706 2015-07869 Consumer Product Consumer Product Safety Commission PROPOSED RULES Recreational Off-Highway Vehicles; Extensions, 18556-18557 2015-07910 Education Department Education Department NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Lender's Application Process, 18606 2015-07892 Applications for New Awards: Vocational Rehabilitation Services Projects for American Indians With Disabilities, 18606-18610 2015-07994 Energy Department Energy Department See

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

NOTICES Reimbursement for Costs of Remedial Action at Active Uranium and Thorium Processing Sites; Update, 18610-18611 2015-07911
Environmental Protection Environmental Protection Agency RULES Air Quality Designations and Technical Amendments: 2012 Primary Annual Fine Particle PM2.5 National Ambient Air Quality Standards, 18535-18551 2015-07948 Air Quality State Implementation Plans; Approvals and Promulgations: Idaho, 18526-18528 2015-07821 Designation of Areas for Air Quality Planning Purposes; California; San Joaquin Valley; Reclassification as Serious Non-Attainment for the 1997 PM2.5 Standards, 18528-18535 2015-07765 PROPOSED RULES Effluent Limitations Guidelines and Standards for the Oil and Gas Extraction Point Source Category, 18557-18580 2015-07819 NOTICES Draft Scientific Assessments for Public Comment; Availabiltiy, 18619 2015-07629 Federal Aviation Federal Aviation Administration RULES Restricted Area Boundary Descriptions: Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA, 18519-18522 2015-08005 NOTICES Passenger Facility Charges: Tampa International Airport, Tampa, FL, 18679-18680 2015-07838 Federal Communications Federal Communications Commission NOTICES Meetings: Federal Advisory Committee Act; Downloadable Security Technology Advisory Committee, 18620 2015-07842 Federal Energy Federal Energy Regulatory Commission RULES Fee Schedule for the Use of Government Lands by Hydropower Licensees; Annual Update; Correction, 18526 2015-07927 NOTICES Applications: Lock 11 Hydro Partners, 18614-18615 2015-07926 Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Co., LLC, 18617-18618 2015-07924 Combined Filings, 18611-18614, 18616-18617 2015-07928 2015-07929 2015-07930 2015-07931 Filings: Texas Gas Transmission, LLC, 18615-18616 2015-07923 Terminations of Licences: Richard Bertea, 18618-18619 2015-07925 Federal Highway Federal Highway Administration NOTICES Final Federal Agency Actions: US 183 From US 290 to SH 71 (Bergstrom Expressway) in Texas, 18680-18681 2015-07803 Federal Motor Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration NOTICES Hours of Service of Drivers; Exemption Applications: American Pyrotechnics Association, 18690-18693 2015-07906 Qualification of Drivers; Exemption Applications: Diabetes Mellitus, 18681-18690 2015-07904 Hearing, 18697-18699 2015-07909 Vision, 18693-18697 2015-07905 2015-07908 Federal Reserve Federal Reserve System NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 18620-18624 2015-07920 Changes in Bank Control: Acquisitions of Shares of a Bank or Bank Holding Company, 18620 2015-07902 Formations of, Acquisitions by, and Mergers of Bank Holding Companies, 18624 2015-07901 Permissible Nonbanking Activities or To Acquire Companies That Are Engaged in Permissible Nonbanking Activities; Correction, 18620 2015-07900 Federal Transit Federal Transit Administration NOTICES National Transit Database Annual Information Collection, 18699-18703 2015-07879 FIRSTNET First Responder Network Authority NOTICES Further Proposed Interpretations of Parts of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012, 18601 2015-07691 Fish Fish and Wildlife Service PROPOSED RULES Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants: Endangered Species Status for the Big Sandy Crayfish and the Guyandotte River Crayfish, 18710-18739 2015-07625 Petition To List Humboldt Marten as an Endangered or Threatened Species; Findings, 18742-18772 2015-07766 Food and Drug Food and Drug Administration NOTICES Guidance: Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies; Modifications and Revisions, 18629-18631 2015-08015 Priority Review Vouchers: Rare Pediatric Disease Products, 18628-18629 2015-08014 2015-08016 Forest Forest Service NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Community Forest and Open Space Program, 18598 2015-07996 Environmental Impact Statements; Availability, etc.: Roadless Area Conservation, National Forest System Lands in Colorado, 18598-18599 2015-07886 Settlement Agreements: Consent for Engineering Evaluation/Cost Analysis Nacimiento Mine Site, Santa Fe National Forest, NM, 18599-18600 2015-07898 Health and Human Health and Human Services Department See

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

See

Children and Families Administration

See

Food and Drug Administration

See

Health Resources and Services Administration

See

Indian Health Service

See

National Institutes of Health

NOTICES Findings of Research Misconduct, 2015-07896 18638-18639 2015-07897 Meetings: National Advisory Committee on Children and Disasters; Teleconference, 18639 2015-07874
Health Resources Health Resources and Services Administration NOTICES Privacy Act; Systems of Records, 18631-18638 2015-07899 Homeland Homeland Security Department See

Coast Guard

See

Transportation Security Administration

Housing Housing and Urban Development Department RULES Federal Awarding Agency Regulatory Implementation of Office of Management and Budgets Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards; Correction, 18519 2015-07922 NOTICES Delegation of Authority for the Office of Public and Indian Housing, 18645-18646 2015-07918 Order of Succession for the Office of Public and Indian Housing, 18644-18645 2015-07914 Indian Health Indian Health Service NOTICES Reimbursement Rates for Calendar Year 2015, 18639-18640 2015-07779 Industry Industry and Security Bureau RULES Export Administration Regulations Based on the 2014 Missile Technology Control Regime Plenary Agreements; Revisions, 18522-18526 2015-07872 Interior Interior Department See

Fish and Wildlife Service

International Trade Adm International Trade Administration NOTICES Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Certain Oil Country Tubular Goods From the Peoples Republic of China, 18604 2015-07976 Lightweight Thermal Paper From Germany, 2015-07973 18602-18603 2015-07974 Justice Department Justice Department NOTICES Proposed Consent Decrees, 18646 2015-07891 Labor Department Labor Department See

Occupational Safety and Health Administration

NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Labor Market Information Cooperative Agreement, 18646-18647 2015-07893
Legal Legal Services Corporation NOTICES Meetings; Sunshine Act, 18650-18652 2015-08019 Maritime Maritime Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Maritime Administration Service Obligation Compliance Annual Report, 18706 2015-07919 Requests for Administrative Waivers of the Coastwise Trade Laws: Vessel OCTOPUS, 18705 2015-07912 Vessel PACIFIC PEARL, 18704 2015-07913 Vessel PHANTOM, 18704-18705 2015-07916 Vessel SHIP FACED, 18705-18706 2015-07915 NASA National Aeronautics and Space Administration PROPOSED RULES Federal Acquisition Regulations: Supplement Regulatory Review No. 3, 18580-18584 2015-07737 National Institute National Institutes of Health NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Evaluation of the NHLBI Proteomics Centers Program; Qualitative Interviews, 18642-18643 2015-07889 Identifying Experts in Prevention Science Methods To Include on NIH Review Panels (OD), 18641-18642 2015-07999 Neurobiobank Tissue Access Request, 18640-18641 2015-07871 Charter Renewals: National Cancer Institute, 18643 2015-07861 Meetings: National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, 18641 2015-07864 National Oceanic National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RULES Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic: Blueline Tilefish in the South Atlantic Region; Commercial Accountability Measure and Closure, 18551-18552 2015-07946 Reef Fish Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico; Red Grouper Recreational Management Measures, 18552-18553 2015-08001 Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska: Northern Rockfish in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area, 18553-18554 2015-07942 Pacific Cod by Catcher/Processors Using Hook-and-Line Gear in the Western Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska, 18554-18555 2015-07938 PROPOSED RULES Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to Commercial Fishing Operations: Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan Regulations; Correction, 18584-18585 2015-08003 NOTICES Meetings: Advisory Committee on Commercial Remote Sensing; Cancellation, 18605 2015-07875 National Science National Science Foundation NOTICES Meetings; Sunshine Act: National Science Board, 18652 2015-08066 Nuclear Regulatory Nuclear Regulatory Commission NOTICES Civil Monetary Penalties: ATC Group Services, Inc., 18652-18654 2015-07984 Facility Operating and Combined Licenses: Applications and Amendments Involving Proposed No Significant Hazards Considerations, etc., 18655-18661 2015-07715 Meetings: Advisory Committee on the Medical Uses of Isotopes, 18655 2015-07990 Requests for Nominations: Advisory Committee on Medical Uses of Isotopes, 18654-18655 2015-07993 Occupational Safety Health Adm Occupational Safety and Health Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Asbestos in Construction Standard, 18649-18650 2015-07936 Standard on Commercial Diving Operations, 18647-18649 2015-07937 Presidential Documents Presidential Documents PROCLAMATIONS World Autism Awareness Day (Proc. 9250), 18515-18516 2015-08089 ADMINISTRATIVE ORDERS National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015; Delegation of Authority (Memorandum of March 27, 2015), 18517 2015-08088 Securities Securities and Exchange Commission NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 18664-18665 2015-07852 Meetings; Sunshine Act, 18662, 18664 2015-08020 2015-08021 Self-Regulatory Organizations; Proposed Rule Changes: ISE Gemini, LLC, 18665-18667 2015-07849 NASDAQ OMX PHLX, LLC, 18662-18664, 18667-18669 2015-07851 2015-07882 Small Business Small Business Administration PROPOSED RULES Small Business Mentor Protege Programs: Women-Owned Small Business Federal Contract Program; Rules of Procedure Governing Cases Before the Office of Hearings and Appeals; Extension of Comment Period, 18556 2015-07887 NOTICES Disaster Declarations: Hawaii, 18669 2015-07890 Social Social Security Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 18669-18673 2015-07881 Privacy Act; Systems of Records, 18673-18674 2015-07843 State Department State Department NOTICES Charter Renewals: Advisory Committee on International Economic Policy, 18674 2015-07949 Presidents Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief Scientific Advisory Board, 18674 2015-07921 U.S. National Commission for UNESCO, 18675 2015-07917 Meetings: U.S. Department of State Advisory Committee on Private International Law, 18674-18675 2015-07933 Notifications to Congress of Proposed Commercial Export Licenses: Bureau of Political-Military Affairs, Directorate of Defense Trade Controls, 18675-18679 2015-07986 Transportation Department Transportation Department See

Federal Aviation Administration

See

Federal Highway Administration

See

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

See

Federal Transit Administration

See

Maritime Administration

Security Transportation Security Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Maryland Three Airports; Enhanced Security Procedures for Operations at Certain Airports in the Washington, DC, Metropolitan Area Flight Restricted Zone, 18643-18644 2015-07989 Treasury Treasury Department See

Comptroller of the Currency

See

United States Mint

U.S. Mint United States Mint NOTICES Meetings: Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee; Teleconferences, 18706-18707 2015-07683 Veteran Affairs Veterans Affairs Department NOTICES Meetings: Advisory Committee on Homeless Veterans, 18707 2015-07878 Clinical Science Research and Development Service Cooperative Studies Scientific Evaluation Committee, 18707-18708 2015-07880 Separate Parts In This Issue Part II Interior Department, Fish and Wildlife Service, 18710-18739 2015-07625 Part III Interior Department, Fish and Wildlife Service, 18742-18772 2015-07766 Reader Aids

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

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

80 66 Tuesday, April 7, 2015 Rules and Regulations DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT 2 CFR Part 2400 24 CFR Parts 84 and 85 [Docket No. FR-5783-C-01] RIN 2501-AD66 Federal Awarding Agency Regulatory Implementation of Office of Management and Budget's Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards; Correction of RIN Number AGENCY:

Office of the General Counsel, HUD.

ACTION:

Final rule; correction.

SUMMARY:

This document advises that HUD's portion of the governmentwide joint interim rule that implements the Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards, published on December 19, 2014, displayed an incorrect RIN number. This document advises of the correct RIN number, 2501-AD66, which is also shown above in the heading of this document.

DATES:

Effective April 7, 2015.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Aaron Santa Anna, Assistant General Counsel for Regulations, Office of General Counsel, Department of Housing and Urban Development, 451 7th Street SW., Room 10282, Washington, DC 20410-0500; telephone number 202-708-1793 (this is not a toll-free number). Hearing- and speech-impaired persons may access this number through TTY by calling the Federal Relay Service at 800-877-8339 (this is a toll-free number).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

On December 19, 2014 (79 FR 75867), the Office of Management and Budget published a joint, governmentwide interim rule of all Federal award-making agencies entitled, “Federal Awarding Agency Regulatory Implementation of Office of Management and Budget's Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards.” In the joint, governmentwide interim rule, HUD added 2 CFR 2400.101 and amended 24 CFR parts 84 and 85 by removing all substantive provisions and retaining in each part only a cross reference to 2 CFR 2400.101 and a savings provision. The heading for HUD's portion of the governmentwide joint interim rule inadvertently displayed RIN number 2501-AD54, which is incorrect. The correct RIN number for HUD's portion of the governmentwide joint interim rule is 2501-AD66, and this document advises of the correction.

Correction

In FR Doc. 2014-28697 appearing on page 75871 in the Federal Register of Friday, December 19, 2014, make the following correction. On page 75871, in the third column, correct the RIN number for “DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT” to read “2501-AD66”.

Dated: April 2, 2015. Aaron Santa Anna, Assistant General Counsel for Regulations.
[FR Doc. 2015-07922 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4210-67-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 73 [Docket No. FAA-2015-0618; Airspace Docket No. 15-ANM-3] RIN 2120-AA66 Amendment of Restricted Area Boundary Descriptions; Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Final rule; technical amendment.

SUMMARY:

This action makes minor corrections to the boundary descriptions of restricted areas R-6703A, R-6703B, R-6703C, R-6703D, R-6703E and R-6703F at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA. The changes are required due to a typographical error that occurred during publication of the final rule in the Federal Register.

DATES:

Effective date 0901 UTC, May 7, 2015.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Jason Stahl, Airspace Policy and Regulations Group, AJV-11, Office of Airspace Services, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20591; telephone: (202) 267-8783.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

In a final rule published in the Federal Register April 29, 2013 (78 FR 24985), several instances of the symbol for minutes of arc were changed to the symbol for seconds of arc. Instead of a geographic coordinate denoted as lat. 47°52′31″ N, it was published as lat. 47°52″31″ N.

The Rule

This action amends Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 73 to make minor updates to certain latitude/longitude coordinates in the descriptions of restricted areas R-6703A, R-6703B, R-6703C, R-6703D, R-6703E and R-6703F at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA. The changes are to correct a typographical error of the symbol depicting minutes of arc in the publication of the original rule.

R-6703A: The text “Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 47°03″ 07″ N., long. 122°41″ 09″ W.; to lat. 47°04″ 34″ N., long. 122°41″ 09″ W.; to lat. 47°04″ 41″ N., long. 122°38″ 19″ W.; to lat. 47°03″ 37″ N., long. 122°35″ 40″ W.; to lat. 47°03″ 15″ N., long. 122°35″ 48″ W.; to lat. 47°03″ 06″ N., long. 122°36″ 51″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 02″ N., long. 122°37″ 33″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 06″ N., long. 122°38″ 33″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 14″ N., long. 122°38″ 53″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 19″ N., long. 122°39″ 14″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 19″ N., long. 122°39″ 37″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 21″ N., long. 122°40″ 17″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 38″ N., long. 122°40″ 39.″ W.; thence via the Nisqually River to the point of beginning.” is replaced with “Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 47°03′ 07″ N., long. 122°41′ 09″ N.; to lat. 47°04′ 34″ N., long. 122°41′ 09″ N.; to lat. 47°04′ 41″ N., long. 122°38′ 19″ N.; to lat. 47°03′ 37″ N., long. 122°35′ 40″ N.; to lat. 47°03′ 15″ N., long. 122°35′ 48″ N.; to lat. 47°03′ 06″ N., long. 122°36′ 51″ N.; to lat. 47°02′ 02″ N., long. 122°37′ 33″ N.; to lat. 47°02′ 06″ N., long. 122°38′ 33″ N.; to lat. 47°02′ 14″ N., long. 122°38′ 53″ N.; to lat. 47°02′ 19″ N., long. 122°39′ 14″ N.; to lat. 47°02′ 19″ N., long. 122°39′ 37″ N.; to lat. 47°02′ 21″ N., long. 122°40′ 17″ N.; to lat. 47°02′ 38″ N., long. 122°40′ 39″ N.; Thence via the Nisqually River to the point of beginning.”

R-6703B: The text ”Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 47°01″ 32″ N., long. 122°36″ 28″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 32″ N., long. 122°36″ 51″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 42″ N., long. 122°37″ 12″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 02″ N., long. 122°37″ 33.″ W.; to lat. 47°03″ 06″ N., long. 122°36″ 51″ W.; to lat. 47°03″ 15″ N., long. 122°35″ 48″ W.; to the point of beginning.” is replaced with “Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 47°01′32″ N., long. 122°36′28″ W.; to lat. 47°01′32″ N., long. 122°36′51″ W.; to lat. 47°01′42″ N., long. 122°37′12″ W.; to lat. 47°02′02″ N., long. 122°37′33″ W.; to lat. 47°03′06″ N., long. 122°36′51″ W.; to lat. 47°03′15″ N., long. 122°35′48″ W.; to the point of beginning.”

R-6703C: The text “Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 46°59″ 19″ N., long. 122°37″ 19″ W.; to lat. 46°59″ 15″ N., long. 122°37″ 56″ W.; Thence via the Nisqually River to lat. 47°00″ 32″ N., long. 122°38″ 59″ W.; to lat. 47°00″ 47″ N., long. 122°39″ 04″ W.; to lat. 47°00″ 57″ N., long. 122°39″ 20″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 10″ N., long. 122°39″ 26″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 22″ N., long. 122°39″ 45″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 42″ N., long. 122°39″ 49″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 00″ N., long. 122°39″ 59″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 21″ N., long. 122°40″ 17″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 19″ N., long. 122°39″ 37″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 19″ N., long. 122°39″ 14″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 14″ N., long. 122°38″ 53″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 06″ N., long. 122°38″ 33″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 02″ N., long. 122°37″ 33″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 42″ N., long. 122°37″ 12″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 32″ N., long. 122°36″ 51″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 32″ N., long. 122°36″ 28″ W.; to the point of beginning.” is replaced with “Beginning at lat. 46°59′19″ N., long. 122°37′19″ W.; to lat. 46°59′15″ N., long. 122°37′56″ W.; Thence via the Nisqually River to lat. 47°00′32″ N., long. 122°38′59″ W.; to lat. 47°00′47″ N., long. 122°39′04″ W.; to lat. 47°00′57″ N., long. 122°39′20″ W.; to lat. 47°01′10″ N., long. 122°39′26″ W.; to lat. 47°01′22″ N., long. 122°39′45″ W.; to lat. 47°01′42″ N., long. 122°39′49″ W.; to lat. 47°02′00″ N., long. 122°39′59″ W.; to lat. 47°02′21″ N., long. 122°40′17″ W.; to lat. 47°02′19″ N., long. 122°39′37″ W.; to lat. 47°02′19″ N., long. 122°39′14″ W.; to lat. 47°02′14″ N., long. 122°38′53′ W.; to lat. 47°02′06″ N., long. 122°38′33″ W.; to lat. 47°02′02″ N., long. 122°37′33″ W.; to lat. 47°01′42″ N., long. 122°37′12″ W.; to lat. 47°01′32″ N., long. 122°36′51″ W.; to lat. 47°01′32″ N., long. 122°36′28″ W.; to the point of beginning.”

R-6703D: The text “Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 46°57″ 11″ N., long. 122°38″ 51″ W.; to lat. 46°57″ 12″ N., long. 122°43″ 42″ W.; to lat. 47°03″ 07″ N., long. 122°41″ 09″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 56″ N., long. 122°40″ 49″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 41″ N., long. 122°40″ 48″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 38″ N., long. 122°40″ 39″ W., to lat. 47°02″ 21″ N,. long. 122°40″ 17″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 00″ N., long. 122°39″ 59″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 42″ N., long. 122°39″ 49″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 22″ N., long. 122°39″ 45″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 10″ N., long. 122°39″ 26″ W.; to lat. 47°00″ 57″ N., long. 122°39″ 20″ W.; to lat. 47°00″ 47″ N., long. 122°39″ 04″ W.; to lat. 47°00″ 32″ N., long. 122°38″ 59″ W.; thence via the Nisqually River to lat. 46°59″ 15″ N., long. 122°37″ 56″ W.; to lat. 46°59″ 19″ N., long. 122°37″ 19″ W.; to lat. 46°58″ 16″ N., long. 122°37″ 44″ W.; to the point of beginning.” is replaced with “Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 46°57′11″ N., long. 122°38′51″ W.; to lat. 46°57′12″ N., long. 122°43′42″ W.; to lat. 47°03′07″ N., long. 122°41′09″ W.; to lat. 47°02′56″ N., long. 122°40′49″ W.; to lat. 47°02′41″ N., long. 122°40′48″ W.; to lat. 47°02′38″ N., long. 122°40′39″ W., to lat. 47°02′21″ N,. long. 122°40′17″ W.; to lat. 47°02′00″ N., long. 122°39′59″ W.; to lat. 47°01′42″ N., long. 122°39′49″ W.; to lat. 47°01′22″ N., long. 122°39′45″ W.; to lat. 47°01′10″ N., long. 122°39′26″ W.; to lat. 47°00′57″ N., long. 122°39′20″ W.; to lat. 47°00′47″ N., long. 122°39′04″ W.; to lat. 47°00′32″ N., long. 122°38′59″ W.; thence via the Nisqually River to lat. 46°59′15″ N., long. 122°37′56″ W.; to lat. 46°59′19″ N., long. 122°37′19″ W.; to lat. 46°58′16″ N., long. 122°37′44″ W.; to the point of beginning.”

R-6703D: The text “Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 46°57″ 11″ N., long. 122°38″ 51″ W.; to lat. 46°57″ 12″ N., long. 122°43″ 42″ W.; to lat. 47°03″ 07″ N., long. 122°41″ 09″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 56″ N., long. 122°40″ 49″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 41″ N., long. 122°40″ 48″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 38″ N., long. 122°40″ 39″ W., to lat. 47°02″ 21″ N,. long. 122°40″ 17″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 00″ N., long. 122°39″ 59″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 42″ N., long. 122°39″ 49″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 22″ N., long. 122°39″ 45″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 10″ N., long. 122°39″ 26″ W.; to lat. 47°00″ 57″ N., long. 122°39″ 20″ W.; to lat. 47°00″ 47″ N., long. 122°39″ 04″ W.; to lat. 47°00″ 32″ N., long. 122°38″ 59″ W.; thence via the Nisqually River to lat. 46°59″ 15″ N., long. 122°37″ 56″ W.; to lat. 46°59″ 19″ N., long. 122°37″ 19″ W.; to lat. 46°58″ 16″ N., long. 122°37″ 44″ W.; to the point of beginning.” is replaced with “Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 46°57′11″ N., long. 122°38′51″ W.; to lat. 46°57′12″ N., long. 122°43′42″ W.; to lat. 47°03′07″ N., long. 122°41′09″ W.; to lat. 47°02′56″ N., long. 122°40′49″ W.; to lat. 47°02′41″ N., long. 122°40′48″ W.; to lat. 47°02′38″ N., long. 122°40′39″ W., to lat. 47°02′21″ N,. long. 122°40′17″ W.; to lat. 47°02′00″ N., long. 122°39′59″ W.; to lat. 47°01′42″ N., long. 122°39′49″ W.; to lat. 47°01′22″ N., long. 122°39′45″ W.; to lat. 47°01′10″ N., long. 122°39′26″ W.; to lat. 47°00′57″ N., long. 122°39′20″ W.; to lat. 47°00′47″ N., long. 122°39′04″ W.; to lat. 47°00′32″ N., long. 122°38′59″ W.; thence via the Nisqually River to lat. 46°59′15″ N., long. 122°37′56″ W.; to lat. 46°59′19″ N., long. 122°37′19″ W.; to lat. 46°58′16″ N., long. 122°37′44″ W.; to the point of beginning.”

R-6703E: The text “Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 46°57″ 11″ N., long. 122°38″ 51″ W.; to lat. 46°54″ 34″ N., long. 122°41″ 29″ W.; to lat. 46°54″ 17″ N., long. 122°43″ 36″ W.; to lat. 46°55″ 11″ N., long. 122°44″ 34″ W.; to lat. 46°57″ 12″ N., long. 122°43″ 42″ W.; to the point of beginning.” is replaced with “Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 46°57′11″ N., long. 122°38′51″ W.; to lat. 46°54′34″ N., long. 122°41′29″ W.; to lat. 46°54′17″ N., long. 122°43′36″ W.; to lat. 46°55′11″ N., long. 122°44′34″ W.; to lat. 46°57′12″ N., long. 122°43′42″ W.; to the point of beginning.”

R-6703F: The text “Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 47°01″ 32″ N., long. 122°36″ 28″ W.; to lat. 47°03″ 37″ N., long. 122°35″ 40″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 47″ N., long. 122°33″ 40″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 43″ N., long. 122°34″ 06″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 26″ N., long. 122°34″ 22″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 08″ N., long. 122°34″ 38″ W.; to lat. 47°02″ 02″ N., long. 122°34″ 52″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 57″ N., long. 122°35″ 05″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 37″ N., long. 122°35″ 37″ W.; to lat. 47°01″ 32″ N., long. 122°36″ 05″ W.; to the point of beginning.” is replaced with “Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 47°01′32″ N., long. 122°36′28″ W.; to lat. 47°03′37″ N., long. 122°35′40″ W.; to lat. 47°02′47″ N., long. 122°33′40″ W.; to lat. 47°02′43″ N., long. 122°34′06″ W.; to lat. 47°02′26″ N., long. 122°34′22″ W.; to lat. 47°02′08″ N., long. 122°34′38″ W.; to lat. 47°02′02″ N., long. 122°34′52″ W.; to lat. 47°01′57″ N., long. 122°35′05″ W.; to lat. 47°01′37″ N., long. 122°35′37″ W.; to lat. 47°01′32″ N., long. 122°36′05″ W.; to the point of beginning.”

This amendment consists of minor editorial changes to correct a typographical error in the geographic coordinates. It does not affect the location, designated altitudes, or activities conducted within the restricted areas; therefore, notice and public procedure under 5 U.S.C. 553(b) are unnecessary.

The FAA has determined that this action 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 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 the 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 the descriptions of certain Restricted areas at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA, correcting typographical errors.

Environmental Review

The FAA has determined that this action qualifies for categorical exclusion under the National Environmental Policy Act in accordance with 311d, FAA Order 1050.1E, Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures. This airspace action is a minor editorial change to the descriptions of restricted areas R-6703A, R-6703B, R-6703C, R-6703D, R-6703E and R-6703F at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA., to correct a typographical error in the geographic coordinates. It does not alter the location, altitudes, or activities conducted within the airspace; therefore, it is not expected to cause any potentially significant environmental impacts, and no extraordinary circumstances exists that warrant preparation of an environmental assessment.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 73

Airspace, Prohibited areas, Restricted areas.

Adoption of the Amendment

In consideration of the foregoing, the Federal Aviation Administration amends 14 CFR part 73, as follows:

PART 73—SPECIAL USE AIRSPACE 1. The authority citation for part 73 is amended 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.

§ 73.67 [Amended]
2. § 73.67 is amended as follows:
R-6703A Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA [Amended]

By removing the current boundaries and adding in its place the following:

Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 47°03′ 07″ N., long. 122°41′ 09″ N.; to lat. 47°04′34″ N., long. 122°41′09″ N.; to lat. 47°04′41″ N., long. 122°38′19″ N.; to lat. 47°03′37″ N., long. 122°35′40″ N.; to lat. 47°03′15″ N., long. 122°35′48″ N.; to lat. 47°03′06″ N., long. 122°36′51″ N.; to lat. 47°02′02″ N., long. 122°37′33″ N.; to lat. 47°02′06″ N., long. 122°38′33″ N.; to lat. 47°02′14″ N., long. 122°38′53″ N.; to lat. 47°02′19″ N., long. 122°39′14″ N.; to lat. 47°02′19″ N., long. 122°39′37″ N.; to lat. 47°02′21″ N., long. 122°40′17″ N.; to lat. 47°02′38″ N., long. 122°40′39″ N.; thence via the Nisqually River to the point of beginning.

* * *

R-6703B Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA [Amended]

By removing the current boundaries and adding in its place the following:

Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 47°01′32″ N., long. 122°36′28” W.; to lat. 47°01′32″ N., long. 122°36′51″ W.; to lat. 47°01′42″ N., long. 122°37′12″ W.; to lat. 47°02′02″ N., long. 122°37′33″ W.; to lat. 47°03′06″ N., long. 122°36′51″ W.; to lat. 47°03′15″ N., long. 122°35′48″ W.; to the point of beginning.

* * *

R-6703C Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA [Amended]

By removing the current boundaries and adding in its place the following:

Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 46°59′19″ N., long. 122°37′19″ W.; to lat. 46°59′15″ N., long. 122°37′56″ W.; Thence via the Nisqually River to lat. 47°00′32″ N., long. 122°38′59″ W.; to lat. 47°00′47″ N., long. 122°39′04″ W.; to lat. 47°00′57″ N., long. 122°39′20″ W.; to lat. 47°01′10″ N., long. 122°39′26″ W.; to lat. 47°01′22″ N., long. 122°39′45″ W.; to lat. 47°01′42″ N., long. 122°39′49″ W.; to lat. 47°02′00″ N., long. 122°39′59″ W.; to lat. 47°02′21″ N., long. 122°40′17″ W.; to lat. 47°02′19″ N., long. 122°39′37″ W.; to lat. 47°02′19″ N., long. 122°39′14″ W.; to lat. 47°02′14″ N., long. 122°38′53′ W.; to lat. 47°02′06″ N., long. 122°38′33″ W.; to lat. 47°02′02″ N., long. 122°37′33″ W.; to lat. 47°01′42″ N., long. 122°37′12″ W.; to lat. 47°01′32″ N., long. 122°36′51″ W.; to lat. 47°01′32″ N., long. 122°36′28″ W.; to the point of beginning.

* * *

R-6703D Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA [Amended]

By removing the current boundaries and adding in its place the following:

Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 46°57′11″ N., long. 122°38′51″ W.; to lat. 46°57′12″ N., long. 122°43′42″ W.; to lat. 47°03′07″ N., long. 122°41′09″ W.; to lat. 47°02′56″ N., long. 122°40′49″ W.; to lat. 47°02′41″ N., long. 122°40′48″ W.; to lat. 47°02′38″ N., long. 122°40′39″ W., to lat. 47°02′21″ N,. long. 122°40′17″ W.; to lat. 47°02′00″ N., long. 122°39′59″ W.; to lat. 47°01′42″ N., long. 122°39′49″ W.; to lat. 47°01′22″ N., long. 122°39′45″ W.; to lat. 47°01′10″ N., long. 122°39′26″ W.; to lat. 47°00′57″ N., long. 122°39′20″ W.; to lat. 47°00′47″ N., long. 122°39′04″ W.; to lat. 47°00′32″ N., long. 122°38′59″ W.; thence via the Nisqually River to lat. 46°59′15″ N., long. 122°37′56″ W.; to lat. 46°59′19″ N., long. 122°37′19″ W.; to lat. 46°58′16″ N., long. 122°37′44″ W.; to the point of beginning.

* * *

R-6703E Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA [Amended]

By removing the current boundaries and adding in its place the following:

Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 46°57′11″ N., long. 122°38′51″ W.; to lat. 46°54′34″ N., long. 122°41′29″ W.; to lat. 46°54′17″ N., long. 122°43′36″ W.; to lat. 46°55′11″ N., long. 122°44′34″ W.; to lat. 46°57′12″ N., long. 122°43′42″ W.; to the point of beginning.

* * *

R-6703F Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA [Amended]

By removing the current boundaries and adding in its place the following:

Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 47°01′32″ N., long. 122°36′28″ W.; to lat. 47°03′37″ N., long. 122°35′40″ W.; to lat. 47°02′47″ N., long. 122°33′40″ W.; to lat. 47°02′43″ N., long. 122°34′06″ W.; to lat. 47°02′26″ N., long. 122°34′22″ W.; to lat. 47°02′08″ N., long. 122°34′38″ W.; to lat. 47°02′02″ N., long. 122°34′52″ W.; to lat. 47°01′57″ N., long. 122°35′05″ W.; to lat. 47°01′37″ N., long. 122°35′37″ W.; to lat. 47°01′32″ N., long. 122°36′05″ W.; to the point of beginning.

* * *

Issued in Washington, DC, on April 1, 2015. Gary A. Norek, Manager, Airspace Policy and Regulations Group.
[FR Doc. 2015-08005 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Bureau of Industry and Security 15 CFR Part 774 [Docket No. 141204999-5186-01] RIN 0694-AG41 Revisions to the Export Administration Regulations Based on the 2014 Missile Technology Control Regime Plenary Agreements AGENCY:

Bureau of Industry and Security, Commerce.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) is amending the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) to reflect changes to the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) Annex that were agreed to by MTCR member countries at the September and October 2014 Plenary in Oslo, Norway, and pursuant to the 2014 Technical Experts Meeting in Prague, Czech Republic. This rule also makes conforming changes to correlate the Commerce Control List (CCL) (Supplement No. 1 to Part 774 of the EAR) with the current MTCR Annex. This final rule revises six Export Control Classification Numbers (ECCNs) to implement the changes that were agreed to at the meetings and to better align the MT controls on the CCL with the MTCR Annex.

DATES:

This rule is effective April 7, 2015.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Sharon Bragonje, Nuclear and Missile Technology Controls Division, Bureau of Industry and Security, Phone: (202) 482-0434; Email: [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

The MTCR is an export control arrangement among 34 nations, including most of the world's suppliers of advanced missiles and missile-related equipment, materials, software and technology. The regime establishes a common list of controlled items (the Annex) and a common export control policy (the Guidelines) that member countries implement in accordance with their national export controls. The MTCR seeks to limit the risk of proliferation of weapons of mass destruction by controlling exports of goods and technologies that could make a contribution to delivery systems (other than manned aircraft) for such weapons.

In 1992, the MTCR's original focus on missiles for nuclear weapons delivery was expanded to include the proliferation of missiles for the delivery of all types of weapons of mass destruction (WMD), i.e., nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. Such proliferation has been identified as a threat to international peace and security. One way to counter this threat is to maintain vigilance over the transfer of missile equipment, material, and related technologies usable for systems capable of delivering WMD. MTCR members voluntarily pledge to adopt the regime's export Guidelines and to restrict the export of items contained in the regime's Annex. The regime's Guidelines are implemented through the national export control laws, regulations and policies of the regime members.

Amendments to the Export Administration Regulations

This final rule revises the EAR to reflect changes to the MTCR Annex agreed to at the September and October 2014 Plenary in Oslo, Norway and pursuant to the 2014 Technical Experts Meeting in Prague, Czech Republic. Corresponding MTCR Annex references are provided below for the MTCR Annex changes agreed to at the meetings. This rule also makes three conforming changes to correlate the Commerce Control List (CCL) (Supplement No. 1 to Part 774 of the EAR) with the current MTCR Annex. These conforming changes are made to better align the MT controls on the CCL with the MTCR Annex. In the explanation below for the revisions made in this rule, BIS identifies these changes as follows: “Oslo 2014 Plenary,” “Prague 2014 TEM,” and “CCL Conforming Change to MTCR Annex” to assist the public in understanding the origin of each change included in this final rule.

Specifically, the following six ECCNs are affected by the changes set forth in this final rule:

ECCN 1C111. This final rule amends ECCN 1C111 by revising paragraph a.1 in the List of Items Controlled section to correct an omission error in the ISO standard referenced in order to reference the proper standard. Specifically, this final rule adds a dash and the number one “-1” after the number 2591, so the ISO standard correctly reads “ISO 2591-1:1988.” (MTCR Annex Change, Category II: Item 4.C.2.c., Prague 2014 TEM). This change is not expected to have any impact on the number of license applications received by BIS.

ECCN 1C111. This final rule also amends ECCN 1C111 by revising the Technical Note to paragraph b.5 and paragraphs d.7, d.14 and d.18 in the List of Items Controlled section to add CAS (Chemical Abstracts Service) Numbers. CAS Numbers are a numerical identifier assigned by the Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) to every chemical substance described in the open scientific literature, including organic and inorganic compounds, minerals, isotopes and alloys. The inclusion of CAS Numbers will make it easier to identify the materials controlled under these “items” paragraphs of 1C111. Specifically, this final rule revises the Technical Note to paragraph b.5 to add the CAS Number “(CAS 110-63-4)” after the material “poly 1,4-Butanediol” and the CAS Number “(CAS 25322-68-3)” after the material “polyethylene glycol (PEG).” (MTCR Annex Change, Category II: Item 4.C.5.g., Oslo 2014 Plenary). This final rule revises paragraph d.7 to add the CAS Number “(CAS 5164-11-4)” after “N,N diallylhydrazine.” (MTCR Annex Change, Category II: Item 4.C.2.b.6., Oslo 2014 Plenary). This final rule revises paragraph d.14 to add the CAS Number “(CAS 13464-98-7)” after the material “Hydrazinium dinitrate.” (MTCR Annex Change, Category II: Item 4.C.2.b.13., Oslo 2014 Plenary). Lastly, this final rule revises paragraph d.18 to add the CAS Number “(CAS 29674-96-2)” after the material “Methylhydrazine nitrate (MHN).” (MTCR Annex Change, Category II: Item 4.C.2.b.18., Oslo 2014 Plenary). These changes are not expected to have any impact on the number of license applications received by BIS.

ECCN 3A101. This final rule revises paragraph a.2.a to remove paragraph a.2.a.1 and revises paragraph a.2.b to remove paragraph a.2.b.1 in the List of Items Controlled section because the quantization requirement was removed in the MTCR Annex. This final rule also redesignates paragraph a.2.a.2 as new paragraph a.2.a.1, and paragraph a.2.a.3 as new paragraph a.2.a.2 as a conforming change to the removal of items paragraph a.2.a.1. This final rule also redesignates paragraph a.2.b.2 as new paragraph a.2.b.1 and paragraph a.2.b.3 as new paragraph a.2.b.2 as a conforming change to the removal of paragraph a.2.b.1. (MTCR Annex Change, Category II: Item 14.A.1., Prague 2014 TEM). Paragraphs a.2.a and a.2.b are being revised to correspond with advances in technology. MTCR partners agreed it was no longer necessary to specify that the analogue-to-digital converters have an 8 bit quantization, as most microcircuits will have this capability. Those at 8 bits or above will remain controlled by ECCN 3A001.a.5.a., while the revised 3A101.a will cover those less than 8-bits. Although this change expands the scope of the 3A101, this change is not expected to have any impact on the number of license applications received by BIS because very few microcircuits are currently classified under this ECCN.

ECCN 9A106. This final rule revises paragraph d and the Note to paragraph d in the List of Items Controlled section. (MTCR Annex Change, Category II: Item 3.A.5., Oslo 2014 Plenary). This final rule revises “items” paragraph d by removing the term “and” and then adding the phrase “and gel” before the term “propellant.” Paragraph d, as a result of this change, will now control liquid, slurry and gel propellant control systems. These changes to paragraph d are being made to better control the components of propellant control systems, as well as to clarify how the parameters are applied in the context of 9A106. The term “gel” needs to be added to the control parameter of 9A106.d because gel is not technically a slurry. Therefore, in order to ensure that all of the intended propellant control systems are adequately described under this paragraph d, the term “gel” needs to be added.

Also in ECCN 9A106, this final rule revises the Note to paragraph d to delete the term “and” in the introductory text and to add the phrase “and gas turbines” after the term “pumps” to clarify only servo valves, pumps and gas turbines that are specified under paragraphs a, b or c are classified under 9A106.d. In addition, this final rule clarifies the scope of the Note to paragraph d by adding the phrase “at the maximum operating mode” after the control parameter 8,000 rpm to add greater specificity for how to apply this control parameter. Lastly, this final rule adds a new paragraph c to the Note to paragraph d to specify that gas turbines, for liquid propellant turbopumps, with shaft speeds equal to or greater than 8,000 rpm at the maximum operating mode are also controlled under 9A106.d. The changes will result in an expansion of the control parameter, so this change is expected to result in an increase of 1-2 applications received annually by BIS.

ECCN 9A110. This final rule revises the heading of ECCN 9A110. (Category II: Item 6.A.1., CCL Conforming Change to MTCR Annex). Prior to publication of this final rule, the heading of 9A110 included references to several ECCNs that are “subject to the ITAR” that themselves refer to the USML. The heading structure of 9A110 was slightly convoluted and difficult to understand. Therefore, this final rule revises the heading of 9A110 to make the control parameter simpler and clearer. The revisions do not change the scope of control of 9A110. These revisions to the heading of 9A110, and the additions of 9A604.f and 9A610.t described below, will better reflect the control text of the MTCR Annex with the added benefits of being simpler and easier to understand, in particular for where composite materials for commercial UAVs (under 9A110) are classified on the CCL and where composite materials for military UAVs (under 9A604.f and 9A610.t) are classified on the CCL. This change to 9A110 is not expected to have any impact on the number of license applications received by BIS.

ECCN 9A604. This final rule adds a new paragraph .f in the List of Items Controlled section. (Category II: Item 6.A.1., CCL Conforming Change to MTCR Annex). Paragraph f will control composite structures, laminates and manufactures thereof “specially designed” for the items controlled under USML Category IV that are specified in paragraphs f.1-f.7. Such commodities previously were classified under ECCN 9A604.x. This final rule adds a new paragraph f to allow a clearer identification of these commodities and for the designation of MT license requirements. This final rule also revises the “MT” control in the Reason for Control paragraph in the License Requirements section to add 9A604.f to the MT control. This addition of 9A604.f is made for consistency with the MTCR Annex. Those composite structures, laminates and manufactures thereof “specially designed” for items controlled under USML IV but that do not meet the MTCR thresholds remain controlled under 9A604.x. This change is not expected to have any impact on the number of license applications received by BIS.

ECCN 9A610. This final rule adds a new paragraph t in the List of Items Controlled section. (Category II: Item 6.A.1., CCL Conforming Change to MTCR Annex). Paragraph t will control composite structures, laminates and manufacturers thereof “specially designed” for unmanned aerial vehicles controlled under USML Category VIII(a) with a range equal to or greater than 300 km. Such commodities previously were classified under ECCNs 9A610.x. This final rule adds new paragraph t to allow a clearer identification of these commodities and also for consistency with the MTCR Annex. This final rule also makes two conforming changes in the Reason for Control paragraph in the License Requirements section. First, this final rule revises the “NS” control in the Reason for Control paragraph in the License Requirements section to add the new 9A610.t to the list of 9A610 commodities that are not subject to the “NS” control. Second, this final rule revises the “MT” control in the Reason for Control paragraph in the License Requirements section to add 9A610.t to the MT control. Lastly, this final rule revises the Related Control in the List of Items Controlled section to remove Related Controls paragraph (2) because it is no longer needed due to the revisions made to 9A110, 9A604 and 9A610. BIS evaluated whether adding a Related Controls reference in 9A110 to 9A604.f and 9A610.t would be helpful, but decided it was not needed because the CCL Order of Review in Supplement No. 4 to part 774 already directs persons to review the 9x515 and “600 series” ECCNs prior to reviewing other ECCNs on the CCL. This change is not expected to have any impact on the number of license applications received by BIS.

Savings Clause

Shipments of items removed from eligibility for a License Exception or export or reexport without a license (NLR) as a result of this regulatory action that were on dock for loading, on lighter, laden aboard an exporting or reexporting carrier, or enroute aboard a carrier to a port of export or reexport, on April 7, 2015, pursuant to actual orders for export or reexport to a foreign destination, may proceed to that destination under the previous eligibility for a License Exception or export or reexport without a license (NLR) so long as they are exported or reexported before May 7, 2015. Any such items not actually exported or reexported before midnight, on May 7, 2015, require a license in accordance with this rule.

Export Administration Act

Although the Export Administration Act expired on August 20, 2001, the President, through Executive Order 13222 of August 17, 2001, 3 CFR, 2001 Comp., p. 783 (2002), as amended by Executive Order 13637 of March 8, 2013, 78 FR 16129 (March 13, 2013) and as extended by the Notice of August 7, 2014, 79 FR 46959 (August 11, 2014), has continued the Export Administration Regulations in effect under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act. BIS continues to carry out the provisions of the Export Administration Act, as appropriate and to the extent permitted by law, pursuant to Executive Order 13222.

Regulatory Requirements

1. Executive Orders 13563 and 12866 direct agencies to assess all costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, if regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public health and safety effects, distribute impacts, and equity). Executive Order 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, of reducing costs, of harmonizing rules, and of promoting flexibility. This rule has been determined to be significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866.

2. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no person may be required to respond to or be subject to a penalty for failure to comply with a collection of information, subject to the requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.) (PRA), unless that collection of information displays a currently valid Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Control Number. This regulation involves collections previously approved by OMB under control number 0694-0088, Simplified Network Application Processing System, which includes, among other things, license applications and carries a burden estimate of 43.8 minutes for a manual or electronic submission. Total burden hours associated with the PRA and OMB control number 0694-0088 are expected to increase slightly as a result of this rule. You may send comments regarding the collection of information associated with this rule, including suggestions for reducing the burden, to Jasmeet K. Seehra, Office of Management and Budget (OMB), by email to [email protected], or by fax to (202) 395-7285.

3. This rule does not contain policies with Federalism implications as that term is defined under E.O. 13132.

4. The provisions of the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 553) requiring notice of proposed rulemaking, the opportunity for public participation, and a delay in effective date, are inapplicable because this regulation involves a military and foreign affairs function of the United States (5 U.S.C. 553(a)(1)). Immediate implementation of these amendments fulfills the United States' international commitments to the MTCR. The MTCR contributes to international peace and security by promoting greater responsibility in transfers of missile technology items that could make a contribution to delivery systems (other than manned aircraft) for weapons of mass destruction. The MTCR consists of 34 member countries that act on a consensus basis and the changes set forth in this rule implement agreements reached by MTCR member countries at the September and October 2014 Plenary in Oslo, Norway and at the 2014 Technical Experts Meeting in Prague, Czech Republic Since the United States is a significant exporter of the items in this rule, implementation of this provision is necessary for the MTCR to achieve its purpose. Moreover, it is in the public interest to waive the notice and comment requirements, as any delay in implementing this rule will disrupt the movement of affected items globally because of disharmony between export control measures implemented by MTCR members. Export controls work best when all countries implement the same export controls in a timely manner. If this rulemaking were delayed to allow for notice and comment and a 30 day delay in effectiveness, it would prevent the United States from fulfilling its commitment to the MTCR in a timely manner, would injure the credibility of the United States in this and other multilateral regimes, and may impair the international communities' ability to effectively control the export of certain potentially national- and international-security-threatening materials.

Further, no other law requires that a notice of proposed rulemaking and an opportunity for public comment be given for this final rule. Because a notice of proposed rulemaking and an opportunity for public comment are not required to be given for this rule under the Administrative Procedure Act or by any other law, the analytical requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) are not applicable. Therefore, this regulation is issued in final form.

List of Subjects in 15 CFR Part 774

Exports, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

Accordingly, part 774 of the Export Administration Regulations (15 CFR parts 730-774) is amended as follows:

PART 774—[AMENDED] 1. The authority citation for 15 CFR part 774 continues to read as follows: Authority:

50 U.S.C. app. 2401 et seq.; 50 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.; 10 U.S.C. 7420; 10 U.S.C. 7430(e); 22 U.S.C. 287c, 22 U.S.C. 3201 et seq.; 22 U.S.C. 6004; 30 U.S.C. 185(s), 185(u); 42 U.S.C. 2139a; 42 U.S.C. 6212; 43 U.S.C. 1354; 15 U.S.C. 1824a; 50 U.S.C. app. 5; 22 U.S.C. 7201 et seq.; 22 U.S.C. 7210; E.O. 13026, 61 FR 58767, 3 CFR, 1996 Comp., p. 228; E.O. 13222, 66 FR 44025, 3 CFR, 2001 Comp., p. 783; Notice of August 7, 2014, 79 FR 46959 (August 11, 2014).

2. In Supplement No. 1 to part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 1—Special Materials and Related Equipment, Chemicals, “Microorganisms” and “Toxins,” Export Control Classification Number (ECCN) 1C111 is amended: a. By revising the introductory text of “items” paragraph a.1 in the List of Items Controlled section; b. By revising the Technical Note to “items” paragraph b.5 in the List of Items Controlled section; and c. By revising “items” paragraphs d.7, d.14, and d.18 in the List of Items Controlled section to read as follows: Supplement No. 1 to Part 774—The Commerce Control List 1C111 Propellants and Constituent Chemicals for Propellants, Other Than Those Specified in 1C011, as Follows (See List of Items Controlled). List of Items Controlled

Items:

a. * * *

a.1. Spherical or spheroidal aluminum powder (C.A.S. 7429-90-5) in particle size of less than 200 × 10 6 m (200 µm) and an aluminum content of 97% by weight or more, if at least 10 percent of the total weight is made up of particles of less than 63 µm, according to ISO 2591-1:1988 or national equivalents.

b. * * *

b.5. * * *

Technical Note:

Polytetrahydrofuran polyethylene glycol (TPEG) is a block copolymer of poly 1,4-Butanediol (CAS 110-63-4) and polyethylene glycol (PEG) (CAS 25322-68-3).

d. * * *

d.7. N,N diallylhydrazine (CAS 5164-11-4);

d.14. Hydrazinium dinitrate (CAS 13464-98-7);

d.18. Methylhydrazine nitrate (MHN) (CAS 29674-96-2);

3. In Supplement No. 1 to part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 3—Electronics, Export Control Classification Number (ECCN) 3A101 is amended by revising “items” paragraphs a.2.a and a.2.b in the List of Items Controlled section to read as follows: 3A101 Electronic Equipment, Devices, “Parts” and “Components,” Other Than Those Controlled by 3A001, as Follows (See List of Items Controlled). List of Items Controlled

Items:

a. * * *

a.2.a. Analog-to-digital converter microcircuits which are radiation-hardened or have all of the following characteristics:

a.2.a.1. Rated for operation in the temperature range from below −54°C to above +125°C; and

a.2.a.2. Hermetically sealed; or

a.2.b. Electrical input type analog-to-digital converter printed circuit boards or modules, having all of the following characteristics:

a.2.b.1. Rated for operation in the temperature range from below −45°C to above +80°C; and

a.2.b.2. Incorporating microcircuits identified in 3A101.a.2 .a;

4. In Supplement No. 1 to part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 9—Aerospace and Propulsion, Export Control Classification Number (ECCN) 9A106 is amended by revising “items” paragraph d, including the Note to paragraph d, in the List of Items Controlled section to read as follows: 9A106 Systems, “Parts” or “Components,” Other Than Those Controlled by 9A006, Usable in “Missiles”, and “Specially Designed” for Liquid Rocket Propulsion Systems, as Follows (See List of Items Controlled). List of Items Controlled

Items:

d. Liquid, slurry and gel propellant (including oxidizers) control systems, and “specially designed” “parts” and “components” therefor, designed or modified to operate in vibration environments greater than 10 g rms between 20 Hz and 2000 Hz.

Note:

The only servo valves, pumps and gas turbines controlled by 9A106.d, are the following:

a. Servo valves designed for flow rates equal to or greater than 24 liters per minute, at an absolute pressure equal to or greater than 7 MPa, that have an actuator response time of less than 100 ms;

b. Pumps, for liquid propellants, with shaft speeds equal to or greater than 8,000 rpm at the maximum operating mode or with discharge pressures equal to or greater than 7 Mpa; or

c. Gas turbines, for liquid propellant turbopumps, with shaft speeds equal to or greater than 8,000 rpm at the maximum operating mode.

5. In Supplement No. 1 to part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 9—Aerospace and Propulsion, Export Control Classification Number (ECCN) 9A110 is amended: a. By revising the heading; and b. By revising the Related Controls paragraph in the List of Items Controlled section to read as follows: 9A110 Composite Structures, Laminates and Manufactures Thereof “Specially Designed” for 9A012 Items That are Controlled for MT Reasons. List of Items Controlled

Related Controls: See also 1A002.

6. In Supplement No. 1 to part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 9—Aerospace and Propulsion, Export Control Classification Number (ECCN) 9A604 is amended: a. By revising the third entry in the License Requirements table; and b. By adding items paragraph f. to the List of Items Controlled section to read as follows: 9A604 Commodities Related to Launch Vehicles, Missiles, and Rockets (See List of Items Controlled). License Requirements

Reason for Control: * * *

Control(s) Country chart
  • (see Supp. No. 1 to part 738)
  • *    *    *    *    * MT applies to 9A604.a, .c, .d, and .f MT Column 1. *    *    *    *    *
    List of Items Controlled

    Items:

    f. Composite structures, laminates and manufactures thereof “specially designed” for the following items controlled under USML Category IV:

    f.1. Systems capable of a range equal to or greater than 300 km;

    f.2. Individual rocket stages usable in 9A604.f.1. systems;

    f.3. Solid propellant rocket motors or hybrid rocket motors having a total impulse capacity equal to or greater than 8.41 × 105 Ns; or

    f.4. Liquid propellant rocket engines integrated, or designed or modified to be integrated, into a liquid propellant propulsion system which has a total impulse capacity equal to or greater than 8.41 × 105 Ns.

    f.5. Thrust vector control systems usable in rockets, space launch vehicles (SLVs), and missiles capable of delivering at least a 500 kg payload to a range of at least 300 km.

    f.6. Re-entry vehicles or warhead heat shields usable in rockets, SLVs, and missiles capable of delivering at least a 500 kg payload to a range of at least 300 km.

    f.7. Safing, arming, fuzing, and firing components usable in rockets, SLVs, and missiles capable of delivering at least a 500 kg payload to a range of at least 300 km.

    7. In Supplement No. 1 to part 774 (the Commerce Control List), Category 9—Aerospace and Propulsion, Export Control Classification Number (ECCN) 9A610 is amended: a. By revising the first and third entries in the License Requirements table; and b. By adding “items” paragraph t to the List of Items Controlled section to read as follows: 9A610 Military Aircraft and Related Commodities, Other Than Those Enumerated in 9A991.a (See List of Items Controlled). License Requirements

    Reason for Control: * * *

    Control(s) Country chart
  • (see Supp. No. 1 to part 738)
  • NS applies to entire entry except 9A610.t, .u, .v, .w, and .y NS Column 1. *    *    *    *    * MT applies to 9A610.t, .u, .v, and .w MT Column 1. *    *    *    *    *
    List of Items Controlled

    Items:

    t. Composite structures, laminates and manufactures thereof “specially designed” for unmanned aerial vehicles controlled under USML Category VIII(a) with a range equal to or greater than 300 km.

    Dated: April 1, 2015. Kevin J. Wolf, Assistant Secretary for Export Administration.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07872 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 3510-33-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission 18 CFR Part 11 [Docket No. RM11-6-000] Annual Update to Fee Schedule for the Use of Government Lands by Hydropower Licensees AGENCY:

    Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, DOE.

    ACTION:

    Correcting amendments.

    SUMMARY:

    The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission published a document in the Federal Register on Tuesday, January 20, 2015 (80 FR 2591), providing the annual update to the fee schedule in Appendix A to Part 11, which lists per-acre rental fees by county (or other geographic area) for use of government lands by hydropower licensees and updating Appendix A to Part 11 with the fee schedule of per-acre rental fees by county (or other geographic area) from October 1, 2014, through September 30, 2015 (Fiscal Year 2015).

    DATES:

    Effective April 7, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Norman Richardson, Financial Management Division, Office of the Executive Director, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, (202) 502-6219, [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This is a summary of FERC's Errata Notice, issued on March 30, 2015.

    On January 8, 2015, the Commission issued a Final Rule in the above-captioned proceeding. Annual Update to Fee Schedule for the Use of Government Lands by Hydropower License, 150 FERC ¶ 62,012 (2015). This document makes corrections to the per-acre values for the State of Alaska in the final rule published in the Federal Register on January 20, 2015 (80 FR 2591).

    List of Subjects in 18 CFR Part 11

    Public lands.

    Accordingly, 18 CFR part 11 is corrected by making the following correcting amendments:

    PART 11—ANNUAL CHARGES UNDER PART I OF THE FEDERAL POWER ACT 1. The authority citation for Part 11 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 792-828c; 42 U.S.C. 7101-7352.

    2. Amend Appendix A to Part 11 by revising the entries for Alaska to read as follows: Appendix A to Part 11—Fee Schedule for FY 2015 State County Fee/Acre Yr *     *    *    *    * Alaska Aleutian Islands Area $1.58 Anchorage Area 33.28 Fairbanks Area 19.49 Juneau Area 33.28 Kenai Peninsula 33.28 All Areas 9.81 *     *    *    *    * Issued: March 30, 2015. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07927 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 6717-01-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R10-OAR-2014-0477; FRL-9925-77-Region 10] Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans; Idaho AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency.

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking final action to partially approve the May 22, 2014, State Implementation Plan (SIP) submittal from Idaho to revise the SIP to update the incorporation by reference of Federal air quality regulations into the SIP. The EPA is also taking final action to partially disapprove Idaho's incorporation by reference of certain provisions of the Federal prevention of significant deterioration (PSD) permitting rules that have been vacated by a Federal Court. As a result of this action, the Idaho SIP is updated to incorporate by reference certain Federal regulations as of July 1, 2013.

    DATES:

    This final rule is effective on May 7, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    The EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket Identification No. EPA-R10-OAR-2014-0477. All documents in the docket are listed on the http://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 the disclosure of which 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 http://www.regulations.gov or in hard copy at EPA Region 10, Office of Air, Waste, and Toxics, AWT-150, 1200 Sixth Avenue, Seattle, Washington 98101. The EPA requests that 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:

    Donna Deneen at (206) 553-6706, [email protected], or by using the above EPA, Region 10 address.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Throughout this document wherever “we,” “us” or “our” is used, it is intended to refer to the EPA.

    Table of Contents I. Background II. Final Action III. Incorporation by Reference IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews I. Background

    In a notice of proposed rulemaking published on January 7, 2015 (80 FR 834), the EPA proposed action on revisions to the Idaho SIP to account for regulatory updates adopted by the Idaho Board of Environmental Quality on October 17, 2013 and submitted to the EPA on May 22, 2014. Please see our January 7, 2015, proposed rulemaking for further explanation of the revisions and the basis for our proposal to partially approve and partially disapprove the May 22, 2014, SIP submittal from Idaho. The public comment period for the proposed rule ended on February 6, 2015. No comments were received on the proposal.

    II. Final Action Provisions the EPA is Approving and Incorporating by Reference

    Consistent with the discussion and analysis in the proposed rulemaking published on January 7, 2015, the EPA is partially approving and incorporating by reference the May 22, 2014, submittal from Idaho. Specifically, we are approving and incorporating by reference the revisions to IDAPA 58.01.01.107.02 “Availability of Reference Materials” and IDAPA 58.01.01.107.03 “Incorporations by Reference,” except that we are partially disapproving the revision to IDAPA 58.01.01.107.03(c) as it relates to the incorporation by reference of specific vacated provisions at 40 CFR 52.21 (namely, 40 CFR 52.21(i)(5)(i)(c) and 40 CFR 52.21(k)(2)) for the reasons discussed in the proposal. This action updates the Idaho SIP to incorporate by reference certain Federal regulations as of July 1, 2013.

    III. 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 the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality regulations 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).

    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 CAA and applicable Federal regulations. 42 U.S.C. 7410(k); 40 CFR 52.02(a). Thus, in reviewing SIP submissions, the 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 this action does not involve technical standards; and

    • Does not provide the 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 the 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).

    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. The 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 June 8, 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.

    Authority:

    42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

    Dated: March 9, 2015. Dennis J. McLerran, Regional Administrator, Region 10.

    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 N—Idaho 2. In § 52.670, the table in paragraph (c) is amended by revising entry 107 to read as follows:
    § 52.670 Identification of plan.

    (c) * * *

    EPA-Approved Idaho Regulations and Statutes State citation Title/subject State effective date EPA Approval date Explanations Idaho Administrative Procedures Act (IDAPA) 58.01.01—Rules for the Control of Air Pollution in Idaho *         *         *         *         *         *         * 107 Incorporations by Reference 3/20/2014, 3/30/2007,
  • 7/1/1997,
  • 5/1/1994
  • 4/7/2015 [Insert Federal Register citation] Except Section 107.03(f) through (p), and with respect to 107.03(c), its incorporation by reference of 40 CFR 52.21(i)(5)(i)(c) and (k)(2).
    *         *         *         *         *         *         *
    3. Section 52.683 is amended by revising paragraph (a) to read as follows:
    § 52.683 Significant deterioration of air quality.

    (a) The State of Idaho Rules for Control of Air Pollution in Idaho, specifically, IDAPA 58.01.01.005 through 007 (definitions), IDAPA 58.01.01.107.03(a), (b), (c) (incorporations by reference)(except, with respect to Section 107.03(c), its incorporation by reference of 40 CFR 52.21(i)(5)(i)(c) and (k)(2)), IDAPA 58.01.01.200 through 222 (permit to construct rules); IDAPA 58.01.01.510 through 516 (stack height rules); and IDAPA 58.01.01.575 through 581 (standards, increments and area designations) (except Section 577), are approved as meeting the requirements of title I, part C, subpart 1 of the Clean Air Act for preventing significant deterioration of air quality.

    [FR Doc. 2015-07821 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Parts 52 and 81 [EPA-R09-OAR-2014-0813; FRL-9925-30-Region 9] Designation of Areas for Air Quality Planning Purposes; California; San Joaquin Valley; Reclassification as Serious Nonattainment for the 1997 PM2.5 Standards AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking final action to reclassify the San Joaquin Valley (SJV) Moderate nonattainment area, including areas of Indian country within it, as a Serious nonattainment area for the 1997 PM2.5 national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) based on EPA's determination that the area cannot practicably attain these NAAQS by the applicable attainment date of April 5, 2015 and in response to a request from the SJV Air Pollution Control District that we reclassify the area. As a consequence of this reclassification, California must submit a Serious area plan including a demonstration that the plan provides for attainment of the 1997 annual and 24-hour PM2.5 standards in the SJV area by the applicable attainment date, which is no later than December 31, 2015, or by the most expeditious alternative date practicable, in accordance with the requirements of part D of title I of the Clean Air Act.

    DATES:

    This rule is effective on May 7, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    The index to the docket (docket number EPA-R09-OAR-2014-0813) for this action is available electronically on the www.regulations.gov Web site and in hard copy at EPA Region 9, 75 Hawthorne Street, San Francisco, California, 94105. While all documents in the docket are listed in the index, some information may be publicly available for viewing only at the hard copy location (e.g., copyrighted material, voluminous records, large maps), and some may not be publicly available at either location (e.g., CBI). To inspect the docket materials in person, please schedule an appointment during normal business hours with the contact listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section below.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Anita Lee, Air Planning Office (AIR-2), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 9, (415) 972-3958, [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

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

    Table of Contents I. Proposed Action II. Public Comments and EPA Responses III. Final Action A. Reclassification as Serious Nonattainment and Applicable Attainment Dates B. Reclassification of Areas of Indian Country C. PM2.5 Serious Area SIP Requirements IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews I. Proposed Action

    On January 12, 2015 (80 FR 1482), EPA proposed to reclassify the SJV nonattainment area, including areas of Indian country within it, from Moderate nonattainment to Serious nonattainment for the 1997 annual and 24-hour PM2.5 standards based on EPA's determination that the area cannot practicably attain these NAAQS by the applicable attainment date of April 5, 2015.1 Under section 188(b)(1) of the CAA, prior to an area's attainment date, EPA has discretionary authority to reclassify as a Serious nonattainment area “any area that the Administrator determines cannot practicably attain” the PM2.5 NAAQS by the applicable Moderate area attainment date.2 On September 25, 2014, the District requested that EPA reclassify the SJV nonattainment area as Serious nonattainment for the 1997 PM2.5 standards. This request included a demonstration that the SJV area cannot practicably attain the 1997 annual PM2.5 standard by the April 5, 2015 attainment date.3 EPA's proposed reclassification of the SJV area was based upon our evaluation of ambient air quality data for the 2003-2014 period indicating that it is not practicable for certain monitoring sites within the SJV area to show PM2.5 design values at or below the level of the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS by April 5, 2015.

    1See proposed rule at 80 FR 1482 (January 12, 2015) for a more detailed discussion of the background for this action, including the history of the PM2.5 NAAQS established in 1997, health effects and sources of PM2.5, designation of the SJV as nonattainment for the PM2.5 standards, and EPA's actions on the submittals from the state of California to address the nonattainment area planning requirements for the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS in the SJV.

    2 Section 188(b)(1) of the Act is a general expression of delegated rulemaking authority. See “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) (hereafter “General Preamble”) at 13537, n. 15. Although subparagraphs (A) and (B) of section 188(b)(1) mandate that EPA reclassify by specified timeframes any areas that it determines appropriate for reclassification by those dates, these subparagraphs do not restrict the general authority but simply specify that, at a minimum, EPA's authority must be exercised at certain times. See id.

    3See letter titled “Sadredin Memo” in the docket for this rulemaking at EPA-R09-OAR-2014-0813-0002.

    In our proposed rule, EPA identified the additional SIP revisions that California would, upon reclassification, have to submit to satisfy the statutory requirements that apply to Serious areas, including the requirements of subpart 4 of part D, title I of the Act.4 EPA explained that under section 189(b)(2) of the Act, the State must submit the required provisions to implement best available control measures (BACM), including best available control technology (BACT), no later than 18 months after reclassification and must submit the required attainment demonstration no later than 4 years after reclassification. Given the December 31, 2015, Serious area attainment date applicable to this area under CAA section 188(c)(2), however, we noted that we expect the State to adopt and submit a Serious area plan for these NAAQS well before the statutory SIP submittal deadlines in CAA section 189(b)(2).5

    4See 80 FR 1482 at 1488 (January 12, 2015).

    5Id. at 1489.

    With respect to the nonattainment new source review (NNSR) program revisions to establish appropriate “major stationary source” thresholds for direct PM2.5 and PM2.5 precursors in accordance with CAA section 189(b)(3), EPA proposed to require the State to submit these NNSR SIP revisions no later than 12 months after the effective date of final reclassification. EPA requested comment on this proposed 12-month timeframe but also noted that if California intended to seek an extension of the Serious area attainment date, the State would need to submit a request that satisfies the requirements of CAA section 188(e), including the required NNSR SIP revisions, in time for EPA to approve such an extension prior to the December 31, 2015 Serious area attainment date.

    II. Public Comments and EPA Responses

    EPA received one comment letter on our proposed action. The comment letter was submitted by the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District (“SJVAPCD” or “District”) on February 11, 2015, prior to the close of the comment period on our proposal.6 We summarize the District's comments and provide our responses below.

    6See letter dated February 11, 2015, from Seyed Sadredin, Executive Director/Air Pollution Control Officer of the SJVAPCD, to Anita Lee, EPA Region 9, “Re: Docket No. EPA-R09-OAR-2014-0813: Comments on Designation of Areas for Air Quality Planning Purposes; California; San Joaquin Valley; Reclassification as Serious Nonattainment for the 1997 PM2.5 Standards. Proposed Rule (80 FR 7, pp. 1482-1491, January 12, 2015).”

    Comment: The SJVAPCD expresses support for EPA's proposed 12-month timeframe for California's submission of the required NNSR SIP revisions but objects to EPA's statement indicating that, to obtain an extension of the attainment date under CAA section 188(e), the state must submit these NNSR revisions “in time for EPA to approve such an extension prior to the December 31, 2015 Serious area attainment date.” The District asserts that EPA “provides no valid justification for this requirement” and that section 188(e) of the Act contains “no mention of NSR, either directly or by implication, that would lead one to believe that the updated NSR rule is required prior to approval of the attainment deadline extension.” The District contends that delays in EPA's regulatory actions related to implementation of the 1997 PM2.5 standards justify a different schedule for this submission.

    In sum, the District asserts that EPA is asking the District to begin an expedited process to adopt a serious area NSR rule before the area is reclassified as a Serious area and without implementation rules or guidance. The SJVAPCD requests that EPA decide in the final rule to require the District to submit a revised NNSR rule within 12 months after EPA's final reclassification action and also to decide that “such an NSR rule adoption deadline does not interfere with EPA's ability to approve an attainment deadline extension under 188(e).”

    Response: As a preliminary matter, EPA notes that nothing in the CAA requires the Agency to promulgate any implementation rules or guidance with respect to implementation of the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS. The statutory provisions of the 1990 CAA Amendments addressing implementation of the PM10 NAAQS and EPA guidance for implementation of the PM10 NAAQS dating back to 1992 and 1994 are still applicable and relevant to this action.7 Thus, the absence of revised implementation rules or additional guidance is not itself a basis for setting a particular schedule for a state to make a statutorily required SIP submission.

    7See generally subpart 4 of part D, title I of the CAA (“Additional Provisions for Particulate Matter Nonattainment Areas”); the General Preamble, 57 FR 13498 (April 16, 1992); and the Addendum, 59 FR 41998 (August 16, 1994); see also Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) v. EPA, 706 F.3d 428 (D.C. Cir. 2013) (ruling that the CAA requires implementation of the PM2.5 standards under subpart 4 because PM2.5 particles fall within the statutory definition of PM10).

    Upon further consideration of this question, however, EPA has determined that the specific factual circumstances in this instance justify the 12 months sought by SJVAPCD for the submission of the NNSR revisions. Accordingly, we are finalizing our proposal to require that California adopt and submit NNSR SIP revisions to implement the subpart 4 requirements for Serious PM2.5 nonattainment areas in the SJV area no later than 12 months after the effective date of this reclassification. In light of the unique circumstances in the SJV, as discussed below, we do not intend at this time to treat these NNSR SIP revisions as a precondition to a request for an extension of the Serious area attainment date under CAA section 188(e).

    Under section 188(e) of the Act, a state may apply to EPA for a single extension of the Serious area attainment date by up to 5 years, which EPA may grant if the State satisfies certain conditions. Before EPA may extend the attainment date for a Serious area under section 188(e), the state must: (1) Apply for an extension of the attainment date beyond the statutory attainment date; (2) demonstrate that attainment by the statutory attainment date is impracticable; (3) have complied with all requirements and commitments pertaining to the area in the implementation plan; (4) demonstrate to the satisfaction of the Administrator that the plan for the area includes the most stringent measures that are included in the implementation plan of any State or are achieved in practice in any State, and can feasibly be implemented in the area; and (5) submit a demonstration of attainment by the most expeditious alternative date practicable.8 Section 188(e) does not explicitly require the state to have a fully approved NNSR program that meets the Act's Serious area requirements before it may qualify for an extension of the Serious area attainment date.

    8 For a discussion of EPA's interpretation of the requirements of section 188(e), see “State Implementation Plans for Serious PM10 Nonattainment Areas, and Attainment Date Waivers for PM10 Nonattainment Areas Generally; Addendum to the General Preamble for the Implementation of Title I of the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990,” 59 FR 41998 (August 16, 1994) (hereafter “Addendum”) at 42002; 65 FR 19964 (April 13, 2000) (proposed action on PM10 Plan for Maricopa County, Arizona); 66 FR 50252 (October 2, 2001) (proposed action on PM10 Plan for Maricopa County, Arizona); 67 FR 48718 (July 25, 2002) (final action on PM10 Plan for Maricopa County, Arizona); and Vigil v. EPA, 366 F.3d 1025, amended at 381 F.3d 826 (9th Cir. 2004) (remanding EPA action on PM10 Plan for Maricopa County, Arizona, but generally upholding EPA's interpretation of CAA section 188(e)).

    As a result of today's reclassification of the SJV as Serious nonattainment for the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS, California is required to submit NNSR SIP revisions consistent with the requirements of subpart 4, including revisions to establish appropriate “major stationary source” thresholds for direct PM2.5 and PM2.5 precursors in accordance with CAA section 189(b)(3). Given the timing of this reclassification, just months before the latest permissible Serious area attainment date (December 31, 2015), and the unusually short timeframe for the State's development and submission of a plan to provide for attainment of the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS by this date,9 we find it reasonable to provide the State a small amount of additional time to adopt and submit the Serious area NNSR SIP revisions required under subpart 4. Accordingly, under these particular circumstances, we do not expect the State to submit the required NNSR SIP revisions simultaneously with the Serious area attainment plan or with a request for an extension of the Serious area attainment date under CAA section 188(e). Instead, this final action requires the state to submit the NNSR SIP revisions required under subpart 4 no later than 12 months after the effective date of the reclassification.10 The State will need to submit the Serious area attainment plan and the section 188(e) extension request before December 31, 2015 to satisfy the statutory requirements.

    9 As explained in our proposed rule (see 80 FR 1482 at 1483-1484), on January 4, 2013 the D.C. Circuit remanded EPA's 2007 and 2008 rules to implement the PM2.5 NAAQS and directed EPA to repromulgate these rules pursuant to subpart 4 of part D, title I of the Act. On June 2, 2014, EPA promulgated a rule classifying all PM2.5 nonattainment areas as Moderate under subpart 4 and establishing a deadline for states to submit SIPs necessary to satisfy the Moderate area requirements (see 79 FR 31566, June 2, 2014). By this time, just over 18 months remained before the Serious area attainment date applicable to the SJV area under CAA section 188(c)(2), which is December 31, 2015. See 80 FR 1482 at 1484, 1487 (January 12, 2015).

    10 As explained in our proposed rule, a 12-month timeframe provides the State a reasonable amount of time to make these relatively straightforward NNSR SIP revisions while assuring that new or modified major stationary sources of PM2.5 in the SJV area will be subject to the applicable NNSR requirements as expeditiously as practicable. See 80 FR 1482 at 1489.

    EPA has recently issued a new proposed rulemaking to implement the PM2.5 NAAQS in accordance with the requirements of subparts 1 and 4 of part D, title I of the Act.11 As part of this proposed rulemaking, the Agency is seeking comment on how to interpret the criteria in section 188(e) for granting state requests for an extension of a Serious area attainment date prospectively. Until the Agency finalizes that proposed rule, EPA encourages the State and District to review the statutory provisions of the CAA applicable to implementation of the PM10 NAAQS, and EPA's prior guidance in the General Preamble and Addendum, as they develop the SIP revisions necessary to satisfy the Serious area requirements that now apply in the SJV PM2.5 nonattainment area.12 Until EPA finalizes any new implementation rule for the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS, the existing guidance in the General Preamble and Addendum provide the Agency's recommendations for SIP submissions required for the PM2.5 NAAQS.

    11See http://www.epa.gov/airquality/particlepollution/actions.html.

    12See generally the General Preamble, 57 FR 13498 (April 16, 1992) and Addendum, 59 FR 41998 (August 16, 1994).

    III. Final Action A. Reclassification as Serious Nonattainment and Applicable Attainment Date

    In accordance with section 188(b)(1) of the Act, EPA is taking final action to reclassify the SJV area from Moderate to Serious nonattainment for the 1997 annual and 24-hour PM2.5 standards of 15.0 and 65 μg/m3, respectively, based on EPA's determination that the SJV area cannot practicably attain these standards by the applicable attainment date of April 5, 2015.

    Under section 188(c)(2) of the Act, the attainment date for a Serious area “shall be as expeditiously as practicable but no later than the end of the tenth calendar year beginning after the area's designation as nonattainment. . . .” The SJV area was designated nonattainment for the 1997 PM2.5 standards effective April 5, 2005.13 Therefore, as a result of our reclassification of the SJV area as a Serious nonattainment area, the latest permissible attainment date under section 188(c)(2) of the Act, for purposes of the 1997 PM2.5 standards in this area, is December 31, 2015.

    13See 70 FR 944 at 956, 957 (January 5, 2005).

    B. Reclassification of Areas of Indian Country 14

    14 “Indian country” as defined at 18 U.S.C. 1151 refers to: “(a) all land within the limits of any Indian reservation under the jurisdiction of the United States Government, notwithstanding the issuance of any patent, and, including rights-of-way running through the reservation, (b) all dependent Indian communities within the borders of the United States whether within the original or subsequently acquired territory thereof, and whether within or without the limits of a state, and (c) all Indian allotments, the Indian titles to which have not been extinguished, including rights-of-way running through the same.”

    Eight Indian tribes are located within the boundaries of the San Joaquin Valley PM2.5 nonattainment area: The Big Sandy Rancheria of Mono Indians of California, the Cold Springs Rancheria of Mono Indians of California, the North Fork Rancheria of Mono Indians of California, the Picayune Rancheria of Chukchansi Indians of California, the Santa Rosa Rancheria of the Tachi Yokut Tribe, the Table Mountain Rancheria of California, the Tejon Indian Tribe, and the Tule River Indian Tribe of the Tule River Reservation.

    We have considered the relevance of our final action to reclassify the SJV nonattainment area as Serious for the 1997 PM2.5 standards to each tribe located within the SJV area. As discussed in more detail in our proposed rule, we believe that the same facts and circumstances that support the reclassification for the non-Indian country lands also support reclassification for Indian country located within the SJV nonattainment area.15 In this final action, EPA is therefore exercising our authority under CAA section 188(b)(1) to reclassify areas of Indian country geographically located in the SJV nonattainment area. Section 188(b)(1) broadly authorizes EPA to reclassify a nonattainment area—including any area of Indian country located within such area—that EPA determines cannot practicably attain the relevant standard by the applicable attainment date.

    15See 80 FR 1482 at 1488 (January 12, 2015).

    The effect of reclassification would be to lower the applicable “major stationary source” emissions thresholds for direct PM2.5 and PM2.5 precursors for purposes of the NNSR program and the Title V operating permit program (CAA sections 189(b)(3) and 501(2)(B)) thus subjecting more new or modified stationary sources to these requirements. The reclassification may also lower the de minimis threshold under the CAA's General Conformity requirements (40 CFR part 93, subpart B) from 100 tpy to 70 tpy. Under the General Conformity requirements, Federal agencies bear the responsibility of determining conformity of actions in nonattainment and maintenance areas that require Federal permits, approvals, or funding. Such permits, approvals or funding by Federal agencies for projects in these areas of Indian country may be more difficult to obtain because of the lower de minimis thresholds.

    Given the potential implications of the reclassification, EPA contacted tribal officials to invite government-to-government consultation on this rulemaking effort.16 EPA did not receive comments on our proposed rule from any tribe. On February 17, 2015, after the close of the comment period on our proposal, EPA received a letter dated January 30, 2015, from the Tejon Tribe expressing interest in developing a better understanding of the reclassification and implications for air quality.17 EPA invited the Tejon Tribe to participate in a conference call during the week of February 23, 2015, to discuss the Tribe's questions.18 We continue to invite Indian tribes in the SJV to contact EPA with any questions about the effects of this reclassification on tribal interests and air quality. We note that although eligible tribes may opt to seek EPA approval of relevant tribal programs under the CAA, none of the affected tribes will be required to submit an implementation plan to address this reclassification.

    16 As discussed in more detail in our proposed rule, EPA sent letters to tribal officials inviting government-to-government consultation. All eight letters can be found in the docket for this proposed action.

    17See letter dated January 30, 2015 from Kathryn Montes Morgan, Tribal Chairwoman, Tejon Indian Tribe to Kerry Drake, Associate Director, EPA Region 9 Air Division.

    18See email dated February 19, 2015 from Maeve Clancy, EPA Region 9 Air Division, to Kathryn Montes Morgan, Tribal Chairwoman, Tejon Indian Tribe.

    C. PM2.5 Serious Area SIP Requirements

    As a consequence of our reclassification of the SJV area as a Serious nonattainment area for the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS, California is required to submit additional SIP revisions to satisfy the statutory requirements that apply to Serious areas, including the requirements of subpart 4 of part D, title I of the Act.

    The Serious area SIP elements that California must submit are as follows:

    1. Provisions to assure that the best available control measures (BACM), including best available control technology (BACT) for stationary sources, for the control of direct PM2.5 and PM2.5 precursors shall be implemented no later than 4 years after the area is reclassified (CAA section 189(b)(1)(B));

    2. A demonstration (including air quality modeling) that the plan provides for attainment as expeditiously as practicable but no later than December 31, 2015, or where the State is seeking an extension of the attainment date under section 188(e), a demonstration that attainment by December 31, 2015 is impracticable and that the plan provides for attainment by the most expeditious alternative date practicable (CAA sections 188(c)(2) and 189(b)(1)(A));

    3. Plan provisions that require reasonable further progress (RFP) (CAA section 172(c)(2));

    4. Quantitative milestones which are to be achieved every 3 years until the area is redesignated attainment and which demonstrate RFP toward attainment by the applicable date (CAA section 189(c));

    5. Provisions to assure that control requirements applicable to major stationary sources of PM2.5 also apply to major stationary sources of PM2.5 precursors, except where the State demonstrates to EPA's satisfaction that such sources do not contribute significantly to PM2.5 levels that exceed the standard in the area (CAA section 189(e));

    6. A comprehensive, accurate, current inventory of actual emissions from all sources of PM2.5 and PM2.5 precursors in the area (CAA section 172(c)(3));

    7. Contingency measures to be implemented if the area fails to meet RFP or to attain by the applicable attainment date (CAA section 172(c)(9)); and

    8. A revision to the NNSR program to establish appropriate “major stationary source” 19 thresholds for direct PM2.5 and PM2.5 precursors (CAA section 189(b)(3)).

    19 For any Serious area, the terms “major source” and “major stationary source” include any stationary source that emits or has the potential to emit at least 70 tons per year of PM10 (CAA section 189(b)(3)).

    Section 189(b)(2) states, in relevant part, that the State must submit the required BACM provisions “no later than 18 months after reclassification of the area as a Serious Area” and must submit the required attainment demonstration “no later than 4 years after reclassification of the area to Serious.” Thus, the Act provides the State with up to 18 months after the effective date of this reclassification (i.e., until late 2016) to submit a BACM demonstration and up to 4 years after this date (i.e., until early 2019) to submit a Serious area attainment demonstration. Given the December 31, 2015 Serious area attainment date for the 1997 PM2.5 standards in this area under CAA section 188(c)(2), however, EPA expects the State to adopt and submit a Serious area plan for the 1997 PM2.5 standards well before the statutory SIP submittal deadlines in section 189(b)(2).

    Additionally, in light of the available ambient air quality data and the short amount of time available before the December 31, 2015 attainment date under CAA section 188(c)(2), EPA anticipates that California may choose to submit a request for an extension of the Serious area attainment date pursuant to section 188(e) simultaneously with its submittal of a Serious area plan for the area. If California fails to submit a request for an extension of the Serious area attainment date that satisfies the requirements of section 188(e) and the SJV area fails to attain the 1997 PM2.5 standards by December 31, 2015, under CAA section 189(d) the State would be required to submit, within 12 months after December 31, 2015, plan revisions which provide for attainment of the PM2.5 standards and, from the date of such submission until attainment, for an annual reduction in emissions within the SJV area of not less than 5 percent of the amount of such emissions as reported in the most recent inventory prepared for the area (hereafter “section 189(d) plan”). If, however, California submits and EPA approves a section 188(e) request for an extension of the Serious area attainment date prior to the December 31, 2015 attainment date for the SJV area, the requirement to submit a section 189(d) plan would not apply unless and until the SJV area fails to attain the 1997 PM2.5 standards by the extended attainment date approved by EPA under section 188(e).

    Given the short amount of time available for California's development of these SIP submittals, EPA anticipates that the Serious area attainment demonstration for the SJV area may rely to some extent on existing photochemical modeling analyses developed for previous PM2.5 plan submittals. EPA commits to work with the District and the State as they develop the necessary technical support for the Serious area plan and to provide guidance on the requirements that California must meet to qualify for an extension of the Serious area attainment date under CAA section 188(e).

    Finally, for the reasons provided in our proposed rule 20 and in our responses to comments above, we are finalizing our proposal to require the State to submit the NNSR SIP revisions required for Serious areas under subpart 4 no later than 12 months after the effective date of this reclassification.

    20See 80 FR 1482 at 1489.

    VI. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    Additional information about these statutes and Executive Orders can be found at http://www2.epa.gov/laws-regulations/laws-and-executive-orders.

    A. Executive Order 12866: Regulatory Planning and Review, and Executive Order 13563: Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review

    This action is exempt from review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) because it relates to a designation of an area for air quality purposes and will reclassify the SJV from its current air quality designation of Moderate nonattainment to Serious nonattainment for the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS.

    B. Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA)

    This action does not impose an information collection burden under the PRA. This action does not contain any information collection activities.

    C. Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA)

    I certify that this action will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the RFA. This action will not impose any requirements on small entities. The final rule requires the state to adopt and submit SIP revisions to satisfy the statutory requirements that apply to Serious areas, and would not itself directly regulate any small entities (see section III.C of this final rule).

    D. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA)

    This action does not contain any unfunded mandate of $100 million or more and does not significantly or uniquely affect small governments, as described in UMRA (2 U.S.C. 1531-1538). This action itself imposes no enforceable duty on any state, local, or tribal governments, or the private sector. The final action reclassifies the SJV nonattainment area as Serious nonattainment for the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS, which triggers existing statutory timeframes for the state to submit SIP revisions. Such a reclassification in and of itself does not impose any federal intergovernmental mandate. The final action does not require any tribes to submit implementation plans.

    E. Executive Order 13132: Federalism

    This action does not have federalism implications.

    F. Executive Order 13175, Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal Governments

    This action may have tribal implications. However, it will neither impose substantial direct compliance costs on federally recognized tribal governments, nor preempt tribal law. Eight Indian tribes are located within the boundaries of the SJV nonattainment area for the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS: The Big Sandy Rancheria of Mono Indians of California, the Cold Springs Rancheria of Mono Indians of California, the North Fork Rancheria of Mono Indians of California, the Picayune Rancheria of Chukchansi Indians of California, the Santa Rosa Rancheria of the Tachi Yokut Tribe, the Table Mountain Rancheria of California, the Tejon Indian Tribe, and the Tule River Indian Tribe of the Tule River Reservation. We note that none of the tribes located in the SJV nonattainment area have requested eligibility to administer programs under the Clean Air Act. This final action affects EPA's implementation of the new source review program because of the lower “major stationary source” threshold triggered by reclassification (CAA 189(b)(3)). The final action may also affect new or modified stationary sources proposed in these areas that require Federal permits, approvals, or funding. Such projects are subject to the requirements of EPA's General Conformity rule, and Federal permits, approvals, or funding for the projects may be more difficult to obtain because of the lower de minimis thresholds triggered by reclassification.

    Given these potential implications, consistent with the EPA Policy on Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribes, EPA contacted tribal officials early in the process of developing this regulation to permit them to have meaningful and timely input into its development. EPA invited tribal officials to consult during the development of the proposed rule and following signature of the proposed rule. As discussed in more detail in our proposed action, we sent letters to leaders of the tribes with areas of Indian country in the SJV nonattainment area inviting government-to-government consultation on the rulemaking effort. On February 17, 2015, EPA received a letter dated January 30, 2015 from the Tejon Tribe expressing an interest in developing a better understanding of, among other things, the effect of the reclassification on air quality. EPA invited the Tejon Tribe to participate in a conference call during the week of February 23, 2015, and EPA staff subsequently had preliminary conversations about this action with the Tribe but has not yet received confirmation of a request to schedule a conference call. No other Indian tribe has expressed an interest in discussing this action with EPA. We continue to invite Indian tribes in the SJV to contact EPA with any questions about the effects of this reclassification on tribal interests and air quality.

    G. Executive Order 13045, Protection of Children From Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks

    EPA interprets Executive Order 13045 (62 FR 19885, April 23, 1997) as applying only to those regulatory actions that concern environmental health or safety risks that EPA has reason to believe may disproportionately affect children, per the definition of “covered regulatory action” in section 2-202 of the Executive Order. This action is not subject to Executive Order 13045 because it reclassifies the SJV nonattainment area as Serious nonattainment for the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS, which triggers additional Serious area planning requirements under the CAA. This action does not establish an environmental standard intended to mitigate health or safety risks.

    H. Executive Order 13211, Actions That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use

    This final action is not subject to Executive Order 13211, because it is not a significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866.

    I. National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act

    This action is not subject to the requirements of Section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995 (15 U.S.C. 272 note) because it does not involve technical standards.

    J. Executive Order 12898: Federal Actions To Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Population

    EPA believes the human health or environmental risk addressed by this action will not have potential disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects on minority, low-income or indigenous populations. This action reclassifies the SJV nonattainment area as Serious nonattainment for the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS, which triggers additional Serious area planning requirements under the CAA.

    K. Congressional Review Act

    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 rule 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). This rule will be effective on May 7, 2015.

    L. Petitions for Judicial Review

    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 June 8, 2015. Filing a petition for reconsideration by the Administrator of this final rule does not affect the finality of this rule 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 40 CFR Part 52

    Air pollution control, Incorporation by reference, Intergovernmental relations, Particulate matter.

    40 CFR Part 81

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Incorporation by reference.

    Dated: March 27, 2015. Gina McCarthy, Administrator.

    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.

    2. Section 52.245 is amended by adding paragraph (c) as follows:
    § 52.245 New Source Review rules.

    (c) By May 7, 2016, the New Source Review rules for PM2.5 for the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District must be revised and submitted as a SIP revision. The rules must satisfy the requirements of sections 189(b)(3) and 189(e) of the Clean Air Act.

    PART 81—DESIGNATION OF AREAS FOR AIR QUALITY PLANNING PURPOSES 3. The authority citation for part 81 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

    4. Section 81.305 is amended as follows: a. In the table titled “California—1997 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS [Primary and secondary],” revise the entries under “San Joaquin Valley, CA”; and b. In the table titled “California—1997 24-Hour PM2.5 NAAQS [Primary and secondary],” revise the entries under “San Joaquin Valley, CA”.

    The revisions read as follows:

    § 81.305 California. California—1997 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS [Primary and secondary] Designated Area Designation a Date 1 Type Classification Date 2 Type *         *         *         *         *         *         * San Joaquin Valley, CA: Fresno County Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. Kern County (part) Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. That portion of Kern County which lies west and north of a line described as follows: Beginning at the Kern-Los Angeles County boundary and running north and east along the northwest boundary of the Rancho La Libre Land Grant to the point of intersection with the range line common to R. 16 W. and R. 17 W., San Bernardino Base and Meridian; north along the range line to the point of intersection with the Rancho El Tejon Land Grant boundary; then southeast, northeast, and northwest along the boundary of the Rancho El Tejon Land Grant to the northwest corner of S. 3, T. 11 N., R. 17 W.; then west 1.2 miles; then north to the Rancho El Tejon Land Grant boundary; then northwest along the Rancho El Tejon line to the southeast corner of S. 34, T. 32 S., R. 30 E., Mount Diablo Base and Meridian; then north to the northwest corner of S. 35, T. 31 S., R. 30 E.; then northeast along the boundary of the Rancho El Tejon Land Grant to the southwest corner of S. 18, T. 31 S., R. 31 E.; then east to the southeast corner of S. 13, T. 31 S., R. 31 E.; then north along the range line common to R. 31 E. and R. 32 E., Mount Diablo Base and Meridian, to the northwest corner of S. 6, T. 29 S., R. 32 E.; then east to the southwest corner of S. 31, T. 28 S., R. 32 E.; then north along the range line common to R. 31 E. and R. 32 E. to the northwest corner of S. 6, T. 28 S., R. 32 E., then west to the southeast corner of S. 36, T. 27 S., R. 31 E., then north along the range line common to R. 31 E. and R. 32 E. to the Kern-Tulare County boundary Kings County Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. Madera County Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. Merced County Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. San Joaquin County Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. Stanislaus County Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. Tulare County Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. *         *         *         *         *         *         * a Includes Indian Country located in each county or area, except as otherwise specified. 1 This date is 90 days after January 5, 2005, unless otherwise noted. 2 This date is July 2, 2014, unless otherwise noted. California—1997 24-Hour PM2.5 NAAQS [Primary and secondary] Designated Area Designation a Date 1 Type Classification Date 2 Type *         *         *         *         *         *         * San Joaquin Valley, CA: Fresno County Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. Kern County (part) Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. That portion of Kern County which lies west and north of a line described as follows: Beginning at the Kern-Los Angeles County boundary and running north and east along the northwest boundary of the Rancho La Libre Land Grant to the point of intersection with the range line common to R. 16 W. and R. 17 W., San Bernardino Base and Meridian; north along the range line to the point of intersection with the Rancho El Tejon Land Grant boundary; then southeast, northeast, and northwest along the boundary of the Rancho El Tejon Land Grant to the northwest corner of S. 3, T. 11 N., R. 17 W.; then west 1.2 miles; then north to the Rancho El Tejon Land Grant boundary; then northwest along the Rancho El Tejon line to the southeast corner of S. 34, T. 32 S., R. 30 E., Mount Diablo Base and Meridian; then north to the northwest corner of S. 35, T. 31 S., R. 30 E.; then northeast along the boundary of the Rancho El Tejon Land Grant to the southwest corner of S. 18, T. 31 S., R. 31 E.; then east to the southeast corner of S. 13, T. 31 S., R. 31 E.; then north along the range line common to R. 31 E. and R. 32 E., Mount Diablo Base and Meridian, to the northwest corner of S. 6, T. 29 S., R. 32 E.; then east to the southwest corner of S. 31, T. 28 S., R. 32 E.; then north along the range line common to R. 31 E. and R. 32 E. to the northwest corner of S. 6, T. 28 S., R. 32 E., then west to the southeast corner of S. 36, T. 27 S., R. 31 E., then north along the range line common to R. 31 E. and R. 32 E. to the Kern-Tulare County boundary Kings County Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. Madera County Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. Merced County Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. San Joaquin County Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. Stanislaus County Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. Tulare County Nonattainment May 7, 2015 Serious. *         *         *         *         *         *         * a Includes Indian Country located in each county or area, except as otherwise specified. 1 This date is 90 days after January 5, 2005, unless otherwise noted. 2 This date is July 2, 2014, unless otherwise noted.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07765 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 81 [EPA-HQ-OAR-2012-0918; FRL-9925-76-OAR] Additional Air Quality Designations and Technical Amendment To Correct Inadvertent Error in Air Quality Designations for the 2012 Primary Annual Fine Particle (PM2.5) National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is establishing air quality designations in the United States (U.S.) for the 2012 primary annual fine particle (PM2.5) National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for five areas in Georgia and neighboring counties in Alabama and South Carolina. The EPA is also changing the initial designation of one area in Ohio, two areas in Pennsylvania, one area shared between Indiana and Kentucky, and one area shared between Kentucky and Ohio for the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. These states have recently submitted complete, quality-assured, and certified air quality data for 2014, and based on that data the EPA is finalizing appropriate initial designations for these areas. Lastly, the EPA is making one minor technical amendment to correct an inadvertent error in the initial designation for a county in Pennsylvania with respect to the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS.

    DATES:

    This final rule is effective on April 15, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    The EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2012-0918. 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., 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 in www.regulations.gov or in hard copy at the EPA Docket Center, William Jefferson Clinton West Building, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Avenue 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 Air Docket is (202) 566-1742.

    In addition, the EPA has established a Web site for these rulemakings at: http:/http://epa.gov/pmdesignations/2012standards/index.htm. This Web site includes the EPA's final PM2.5 designations, as well as state and tribal initial recommendation letters, the EPA's modification letters, technical support documents, responses to comments and other related technical information.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For general questions concerning this action, please contact Andy Chang, U.S. EPA, Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, Air Quality Planning Division, C539-04, Research Triangle Park, NC 27711, telephone (919) 541-2416, email at [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    REGIONAL OFFICE CONTACTS:

    Region 3—Leslie Jones, (215) 814-3409, [email protected], Region 4—Joel Huey, (404) 562-9104, [email protected], and Region 5—Carolyn Persoon, (312) 353-8290, [email protected].

    The public may inspect the rule and state-specific technical support information at the following locations:

    Regional offices States EPA Region 3: Office of Air Program Planning, 1650 Arch Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103-2187, (215) 814-2178 Delaware, District of Columbia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia. EPA Region 4: Air Planning Branch, Sam Nunn Atlanta Federal Center, 61 Forsyth, Street, SW, 12th Floor, Atlanta, GA 30303-8960, (404) 562-9127 Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. EPA Region 5: Air Programs Branch, Ralph Metcalfe Federal Building, 77 West Jackson Street, Chicago, IL 60604-3590, (312) 886-6043 Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin. Table of Contents

    The following is an outline of the Preamble.

    I. Background II. Purpose and Designation Decisions Based on 2012-2014 Data A. Deferred Areas Designated Unclassifiable/Attainment Based on 2012-2014 Data B. Nonattainment Designations Changing to Unclassifiable/Attainment or Unclassifiable Based on 2012-2014 Data C. Minor Technical Amendment To Correct Inadvertent Error III. Environmental Justice Considerations IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews A. Executive Order 12866: Regulatory Planning and Review and Executive Order 13563: Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review B. Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) C. Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) D. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) E. Executive Order 13132: Federalism F. Executive Order 13175: Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal Governments G. Executive Order 13045: Protection of Children From Environmental Health and Safety Risks H. Executive Order 13211: Actions That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution or Use I. National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (NTTAA) J. Executive Order 12898: Federal Actions To Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations K. Congressional Review Act (CRA) L. Judicial Review
    I. Background

    On December 14, 2012, the EPA promulgated a revised primary annual PM2.5 NAAQS to provide increased protection of public health and welfare from fine particle pollution (78 FR 3086; January 15, 2013). In that action, the EPA revised the primary annual PM2.5 standard, strengthening it from 15.0 micrograms per cubic meter (μg/m3) to 12.0 μg/m3, which is attained when the 3-year average of the annual arithmetic means does not exceed 12.0 μg/m3.

    Section 107(d) of the Clean Air Act (CAA), 42 U.S.C. 7407(d), governs the process for initial area designations after the EPA establishes a new or revised NAAQS. Under section 107(d), each governor is required to, and each tribal leader may, if they so choose, recommend air quality designations, including the appropriate boundaries for “nonattainment” areas, to the EPA by a date which cannot be later than 1 year after the promulgation of a new or revised NAAQS. The EPA considers these recommendations as part of its duty to promulgate the formal area designations and boundaries for the new or revised NAAQS. If, after careful consideration of these recommendations, public input received and the EPA's own technical analyses, the EPA believes that it is necessary to modify a state's recommendation and to promulgate a designation different from a state's recommendation, then the EPA must notify the state at least 120 days prior to promulgating the final designation and the EPA must provide the state an opportunity to demonstrate why any proposed modification is inappropriate. These modifications may relate either to an area's designation category or to the boundaries of an area.

    On December 18, 2014, the Administrator of the EPA signed a final action promulgating initial designations for the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS for the majority of the U.S., including areas of Indian country. That rulemaking, which published in the Federal Register on January 15, 2015 (80 FR 2206), designated 14 areas in six states, including two multi-state areas, as nonattainment for the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. The EPA also designated three areas, including the entire state of Illinois, as “unclassifiable” because the ambient air quality monitoring sites in these areas lacked complete data for the relevant period from 2011-2013. In the absence of complete monitoring data, the EPA could not determine, based on available information, whether these areas meet or do not meet the NAAQS, and also could not determine whether these areas contribute to a nearby violation. Lastly, the EPA deferred initial area designations for 10 areas where available data, including air quality monitoring data, were insufficient to determine whether the areas meet or do not meet the NAAQS. For these areas, the EPA noted that it believed additional future air quality monitoring data would result in complete and valid data sufficient to inform a designation determination. Accordingly, the EPA deferred designations for these areas and stated that it would use the additional time available as provided under section 107(d)(1)(B) of the CAA to assess relevant information and subsequently promulgate initial designations for the identified areas through a separate rulemaking action or actions. The 10 deferred areas included: Eight areas in the state of Georgia, including two neighboring counties in the bordering states of Alabama and South Carolina; the entire state of Tennessee, excluding three counties in the Chattanooga area; and, the entire state of Florida. The EPA designated all the remaining state areas and areas of Indian country as unclassifiable/attainment. Consistent with the EPA's “Policy for Establishing Separate Air Quality Designations for Areas of Indian Country” (December 20, 2011), the EPA designated one area of Indian country separately from its adjacent/surrounding state areas.1 The lands of the Pechanga Band of Luiseño Mission Indians in Southern California were designated as a separate unclassifiable/attainment area.

    1 For more information, visit http://www.epa.gov/ttncaaa1/t1/memoranda/20120117indiancountry.pdf.

    The EPA's January 15, 2015, rulemaking also described a process by which the EPA would evaluate any complete, quality-assured, certified air quality monitoring data from 2014 that a state submitted for consideration before February 27, 2015 (80 FR 2209). The EPA stated that it would evaluate whether, with the inclusion of certified 2014 data, the 3-year design value for 2012-2014 suggests that a change in the initial designation would be appropriate for an area. If the EPA agreed that a change in the initial designation would be appropriate, the EPA would withdraw the designation announced in the January 15, 2015, action for such area before the effective date and issue another designation reflecting the inclusion of 2014 data (80 FR 2209).

    II. Purpose and Designation Decisions Based on 2012-2014 Data

    The purposes of this action are to: announce and promulgate initial area designations of unclassifiable/attainment for the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS for five areas in the state of Georgia, including two neighboring counties in the bordering states of Alabama and South Carolina that were initially deferred in the EPA's January 15, 2015, rulemaking; change the designation of one area in Ohio, two areas in Pennsylvania, one area shared between Indiana and Kentucky, and one area shared between Kentucky and Ohio; and make one minor technical amendment to correct an inadvertent error in the designation for Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. A discussion of each of these actions follows below.

    A. Deferred Areas Designated Unclassifiable/Attainment Based on 2012-2014 Data

    In this action, the EPA is designating five areas as unclassifiable/attainment in the state of Georgia, and two neighboring counties in the bordering states of Alabama and South Carolina, all of which were initially deferred in the EPA's January 15, 2015, rulemaking: Augusta (Richmond County and Columbia County in Georgia and Aiken County in South Carolina); Columbus (Muscogee County in Georgia and Russell County in Alabama); Savannah, Georgia (Chatham County and Effingham County); Valdosta, Georgia (Brooks County and Lowndes County); and Washington County, Georgia. The EPA's January 15, 2015, rulemaking stated that with respect to deferred areas, the EPA would use the additional time available as provided under section 107(d)(1)(B) of the CAA to assess relevant information and subsequently promulgate initial designations for the identified areas through separate rulemaking action or actions (80 FR 2207).2 This final action promulgating initial designations fulfills that commitment with respect to these five areas in the state of Georgia, and the two neighboring counties in the bordering states of Alabama and South Carolina. We emphasize that the EPA is not at this time promulgating initial designations for the remainder of the areas in the U.S. that were deferred in the EPA's January 15, 2015, action.

    2 See also the technical support documents for the deferred Georgia areas in the rulemaking docket, documents numbered EPA-HQ-OAR-2012-0918-0324 and EPA-HQ-OAR-2012-0918-0156.

    In the January 15, 2015, action, the EPA stated that for areas deferred due to lack of sufficient data, the agency would evaluate any complete, quality-assured, certified air quality monitoring data from 2014 that a state submitted for consideration before February 27, 2015 (80 FR 2210). The states of Georgia, Alabama and South Carolina each submitted to the EPA complete, quality-assured, and certified air quality monitoring data from 2014 for five deferred areas by the prescribed deadline. These data provide the EPA with sufficient information to promulgate initial designations for these five areas. Specifically, the EPA is designating these five areas as unclassifiable/attainment because the 2014 air quality data collected in these states and submitted to the EPA indicate that the areas are attaining the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. These designations are consistent with the state of Georgia's recommended area designations and boundaries for the standard, for which the public had an opportunity to provide comment and input during the public comment period provided by the EPA for the initial area designations process.3

    3 The period for public comment was open from February 15, 2013, to April 8, 2013 (78 FR 11124 and 78 FR 17915).

    B. Nonattainment Designations Changing to Unclassifiable/Attainment or Unclassifiable Based on 2012-2014 Data

    Based on complete, quality-assured, and certified air quality monitoring data from 2014 submitted to the EPA by several states prior to the February 27, 2015, deadline prescribed in the January 15, 2015, rulemaking, the EPA is changing the initial designation status for five areas. As noted in the Background section of this preamble, the EPA established a process in the January 15, 2015, rulemaking for considering 2014 air quality data in the event that such data would change the initial designation for an area. In cases where we agree that a change in the initial designation would be appropriate, the EPA would withdraw the designation announced in the January 15, 2015, action for such area before the effective date of April 15, 2015, and issue another designation reflecting the inclusion of 2014 data.

    Pursuant to this process, the EPA is changing the initial designation of the following five areas for the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS: Canton, Ohio; Allentown, Pennsylvania; Johnstown, Pennsylvania; Cincinnati-Hamilton, Ohio-Kentucky and Louisville, Kentucky-Indiana. The EPA is changing the initial designation of all areas except for Louisville from nonattainment to unclassifiable/attainment. The initial designation for the Louisville area is changing from nonattainment to unclassifiable.

    Procedurally, these changes in initial designations are consistent with our early data certification and evaluation process, as described earlier and in the January 15, 2015, rulemaking. The states of Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio and Pennsylvania submitted complete, quality-assured, and certified air quality monitoring data from 2014 to the EPA by the prescribed deadline. With the inclusion of the 2014 data that was submitted for each monitor, the 3-year design values for 2012—2014 justify changing the initial designation for these areas with respect to the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS.

    The tables at the end of this final rule (amendments to 40 CFR 81.301—Alabama, 40 CFR 81.311—Georgia, 40 CFR 81.315—Indiana, 40 CFR 81.318—Kentucky, 40 CFR 81.336—Ohio, 40 CFR 31.339—Pennsylvania and 40 CFR 81.341—South Carolina) list all areas for which the EPA is changing the initial designation in each impacted state. This action does not impact any areas of Indian country.

    1. Additional information about the Cincinnati-Hamilton, OH-KY area. The EPA's final technical support document (TSD) for the Cincinnati-Hamilton, Ohio-Kentucky area 4 provided support for the EPA's conclusion that all or portions of seven counties should be designated as nonattainment based on contribution to two violating monitors in Hamilton County, Ohio and one violating monitor in Butler County, Ohio. The final TSD notes that the violating monitor site in Butler County, Ohio [Air Quality Systems (AQS) ID 39-017-0020] began operation in the middle of 2011 as a special purpose monitor, as required by a permit for a nearby facility. Because the monitor had been in operation longer than the 2-year special purpose monitor timeframe (codified in 40 CFR part 58 subchapter C), the monitor automatically became comparable to the NAAQS. However, the EPA noted in the TSD that the 2015 annual ambient monitoring plan (AAMP) from the local agency that operates the site included a request to exempt that site from comparison to the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS given that the intent of the monitor is to measure concentrations specifically at the facility as part of the facility's operating permit requirements. At the time of the initial designation for the Cincinnati-Hamilton, Ohio-Kentucky area, the EPA had not yet evaluated or responded to the exemption request and noted that even in the absence of a violating monitor in Butler County, Ohio the area would still be designated as nonattainment due to its contribution to two other violating monitors in Hamilton County, based on data from 2011-2013.

    4 Available in the rulemaking docket, document number EPA-HQ-OAR-2012-0918-0322.

    Subsequent to promulgation of the initial designations, the EPA agreed with Ohio's request in the 2015 AAMP to exempt AQS site ID 36-017-0020 in Butler County, Ohio from comparison to the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. To ensure continued protection of public health and welfare, the EPA has requested and the state of Ohio has agreed to operate a new monitoring site in the area that can be used in the future for comparison to the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. In addition, the availability of complete, quality-assured, and certified 2014 air quality data from monitors in the surrounding area shows that the area meets the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS based on 2012-2014 data. Therefore, the EPA is changing the designation status of the Cincinnati-Hamilton, Ohio-Kentucky area from nonattainment to unclassifiable/attainment.

    2. Additional information about the Louisville, KY-IN area. The EPA's initial nonattainment designation for the Louisville, Kentucky-Indiana area was based on ambient air quality data collected from 2011-2013 at a monitor in Clark County, Indiana showing a violation of the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. In the final TSD for the Louisville area,5 the EPA noted that air quality data in neighboring Jefferson County, Kentucky were invalid due to issues with the collection and analysis of PM2.5 filter-based samples. The EPA further explained that if Indiana elected to early certify 2014 ambient air quality data showing that the monitor in Clark County, Indiana meets the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS for the design value period 2012-2014, the EPA would designate the Louisville, Kentucky-Indiana area as unclassifiable. Indiana submitted complete, quality-assured, and certified 2014 data from an ambient air quality monitor in Clark County, Indiana by the prescribed deadline of February 27, 2015, showing that the monitor is attaining the NAAQS. Accordingly, in conjunction with Indiana's submission of certified 2014 air quality data, and for the reasons explained in the January 15, 2015, rulemaking and supporting TSD, the EPA is changing the initial designation of the Louisville, Kentucky-Indiana area from nonattainment to unclassifiable. Since the data in the Jefferson County, Kentucky portion of this area are invalid because of significant problems with the collection and analysis of PM2.5 filter-based samples, an unclassifiable designation is appropriate because the EPA is not able to determine whether air quality in the entire Louisville, Kentucky-Indiana area is meeting the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS, or whether the area is contributing to a potential violation in the Jefferson County, Kentucky portion of the area.

    5 Available in the rulemaking docket, document number EPA-HQ-OAR-2012-0918-0322.

    C. Minor Technical Amendment To Correct Inadvertent Error

    This rulemaking also promulgates a minor technical amendment to correct an inadvertent error in the designation listing for Allegheny County in the state of Pennsylvania. This technical amendment clarifies that the entirety of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania is designated nonattainment. In the rule published on January 15, 2015, Allegheny County is listed twice in the designation tables for the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS in 40 CFR part 81. In the first entry of the table at 40 CFR 81.339 table (80 FR 2264), Allegheny County is correctly listed as nonattainment. However, the second entry under “AQCR 197 Southwest Pennsylvania Intrastate,” lists the remainder of Allegheny County as unclassifiable/attainment (80 FR 2266). The EPA is amending the designation table for Pennsylvania to reflect that the entirety of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, is nonattainment for the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS, and that there is no portion of Allegheny County designated unclassifiable/attainment for the NAAQS.

    III. Environmental Justice Considerations

    The CAA requires the EPA to determine through a designation process whether an area meets or does not meet any new or revised national primary or secondary ambient air quality standard. This action includes initial designation determinations for several areas of the U.S. for the 2012 annual PM2.5 NAAQS, and includes revisions to prior designation decisions based on the availability of recent air quality data showing that areas meet the 2012 annual PM2.5 NAAQS. These designations ensure that the public is properly informed about the air quality in an area, and that in locations where air quality does not meet the NAAQS the relevant state authorities are required to initiate appropriate air quality management actions under the CAA to ensure that all those residing, working, attending school or otherwise present in those areas, regardless of minority and economic status, are protected.

    IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews A. Executive Order 12866: Regulatory Planning and Review and Executive Order 13563: Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review

    This action is exempt from review by the Office of Management and Budget because it responds to the CAA requirement to promulgate air quality designations after promulgation of a new or revised NAAQS.

    B. Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA)

    This action does not impose an information collection burden under the PRA. This action fulfills the non-discretionary duty for the EPA to promulgate air quality designations after promulgation of a new or revised NAAQS and does not contain any information collection activities.

    C. Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA)

    This action is not subject to the RFA. The RFA applies only to rules subject to notice and comment rulemaking requirements under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), 5 U.S.C. 553, or any other statute. This rule is not subject to the APA but is subject to CAA section 107(d)(2)(B), which does not require notice and comment rulemaking to take this action.

    D. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA)

    This action does not contain any unfunded mandate as described in UMRA, 2 U.S.C. 1531-1538 and does not significantly or uniquely affect small governments. The action implements mandates specifically and explicitly set forth in the CAA for the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS (40 CFR 50.18). The CAA establishes the process whereby states take primary responsibility for developing plans to meet the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS.

    E. Executive Order 13132: Federalism

    This action does not have federalism implications. It will not have a 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.

    F. Executive Order 13175: Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal Governments

    This action does not have tribal implications. Areas of Indian country are not being designated as part of this action.

    G. Executive Order 13045: Protection of Children From Environmental Health and Safety Risks

    The EPA interprets Executive Order 13045 as applying to those regulatory actions that concern environmental health or safety risks that the EPA has reason to believe may disproportionately affect children, per the definition of “covered regulatory action” in section 2-202 of the Executive Order. This action is not subject to Executive Order 13045 because it does not establish an environmental standard intended to mitigate health or safety risks.

    H. Executive Order 13211: Actions That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution or Use

    This action is not subject to Executive Order 13211, because it is not a significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866.

    I. National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (NTTAA)

    This rulemaking does not involve technical standards.

    J. Executive Order 12898: Federal Actions To Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations

    The EPA believes the human health or environmental risk addressed by this action will not have potential disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects on any population, including any minority, low-income or indigenous populations because it does not affect the level of protection provided to human health or the environment. The results of this evaluation of environmental justice considerations is contained in section III of this preamble titled, “Environmental Justice Considerations.”

    K. Congressional Review Act (CRA)

    This action is subject to the CRA, and the EPA will submit a rule report to each House of the Congress and to the Comptroller General of the U.S. This action is not a “major rule” as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2).

    L. Judicial Review

    Section 307 (b)(1) of the CAA indicates which Federal Courts of Appeal have venue for petitions of review of final actions by the EPA. This section provides, in part, that petitions for review must be filed in the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit: (i) When the agency action consists of “nationally applicable regulations promulgated, or final actions taken by the Administrator,” or (ii) when such action is locally or regionally applicable, if “such action is based on a determination of nationwide scope or effect and if in taking such action the Administrator finds and publishes that such action is based on such a determination.”

    This final action designating areas across the U.S. for the 2012 annual PM2.5 NAAQS is “nationally applicable” within the meaning of section 307(b)(1). At the core of this final action is the EPA's interpretations of the definitions of nonattainment, attainment and unclassifiable under section 107(d)(1) of the CAA, and its application of those interpretations to areas across the country. For the same reasons, the Administrator is also determining that the final designations are of nationwide scope and effect for the purposes of section 307(b)(1). This is particularly appropriate because, in the report on the 1977 Amendments that revised section 307(b)(1) of the CAA, Congress noted that the Administrator's determination that an action is of “nationwide scope or effect” would be appropriate for any action that has a scope or effect beyond a single judicial circuit. H.R. Rep. No. 95-294 at 323, 324, reprinted in 1977 U.S.C.C.A.N. 1402-03. Here, the scope and effect of this final action extends to numerous judicial circuits since the designations apply to areas across the country. In these circumstances, section 307(b)(1) and its legislative history calls for the Administrator to find the action to be of “nationwide scope or effect” and for venue to be in the D.C. Circuit.

    Thus, any petitions for review of final designations must be filed in the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit within 60 days from the date final action is published in the Federal Register.

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 81

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, National parks, Wilderness areas.

    Dated: March 31, 2015. Gina McCarthy, Administrator.

    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, 40 CFR part 81 is amended as follows:

    PART 81—DESIGNATIONS OF AREAS FOR AIR QUALITY PLANNING PURPOSES 1. The authority citation for part 81 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    42 U.S.C. 7401, et seq.

    Subpart C—Section 107 Attainment Status Designations 2. Section 81.301 is amended by revising the table entitled “Alabama—2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS (Primary)” to read as follows:
    § 81.301 Alabama. Alabama—2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS [Primary] Designated area 1 Designation Date 2 Type Classification Date 2 Type Statewide: Autauga County Unclassifiable/Attainment Baldwin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Barbour County Unclassifiable/Attainment Bibb County Unclassifiable/Attainment Blount County Unclassifiable/Attainment Bullock County Unclassifiable/Attainment Butler County Unclassifiable/Attainment Calhoun County Unclassifiable/Attainment Chambers County Unclassifiable/Attainment Cherokee County Unclassifiable/Attainment Chilton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Choctaw County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clarke County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clay County Unclassifiable/Attainment Cleburne County Unclassifiable/Attainment Coffee County Unclassifiable/Attainment Colbert County Unclassifiable/Attainment Conecuh County Unclassifiable/Attainment Coosa County Unclassifiable/Attainment Covington County Unclassifiable/Attainment Crenshaw County Unclassifiable/Attainment Cullman County Unclassifiable/Attainment Dale County Unclassifiable/Attainment Dallas County Unclassifiable/Attainment DeKalb County Unclassifiable/Attainment Elmore County Unclassifiable/Attainment Escambia County Unclassifiable/Attainment Etowah County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fayette County Unclassifiable/Attainment Franklin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Geneva County Unclassifiable/Attainment Greene County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hale County Unclassifiable/Attainment Henry County Unclassifiable/Attainment Houston County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jackson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jefferson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lamar County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lauderdale County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lawrence County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lee County Unclassifiable/Attainment Limestone County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lowndes County Unclassifiable/Attainment Macon County Unclassifiable/Attainment Madison County Unclassifiable/Attainment Marengo County Unclassifiable/Attainment Marion County Unclassifiable/Attainment Marshall County Unclassifiable/Attainment Mobile County Unclassifiable/Attainment Monroe County Unclassifiable/Attainment Montgomery County Unclassifiable/Attainment Morgan County Unclassifiable/Attainment Perry County Unclassifiable/Attainment Pickens County Unclassifiable/Attainment Pike County Unclassifiable/Attainment Randolph County Unclassifiable/Attainment Russell County Unclassifiable/Attainment Shelby County Unclassifiable/Attainment St. Clair County Unclassifiable/Attainment Sumter County Unclassifiable/Attainment Talladega County Unclassifiable/Attainment Tallapoosa County Unclassifiable/Attainment Tuscaloosa County Unclassifiable/Attainment Walker County Unclassifiable/Attainment Washington County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wilcox County Unclassifiable/Attainment Winston County Unclassifiable/Attainment 1 Includes areas of Indian country located in each county or area, except as otherwise specified. 2 This date is April 15, 2015, unless otherwise noted.
    3. Section 81.311 is amended by revising the table entitled “Georgia—2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS (Primary)” to read as follows:
    § 81.311 Georgia. Georgia—2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS [Primary] Designated area 1 Designation Date 2 Type Classification Date 2 Type Statewide: Appling County Unclassifiable/Attainment Atkinson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Bacon County Unclassifiable/Attainment Baker County Unclassifiable/Attainment Baldwin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Banks County Unclassifiable/Attainment Barrow County Unclassifiable/Attainment Bartow County Ben Hill County Unclassifiable/Attainment Berrien County Unclassifiable/Attainment Bibb County Unclassifiable/Attainment Bleckley County Unclassifiable/Attainment Brantley County Unclassifiable/Attainment Brooks County Unclassifiable/Attainment Bryan County Unclassifiable/Attainment Bulloch County Unclassifiable/Attainment Burke County Unclassifiable/Attainment Butts County Unclassifiable/Attainment Calhoun County Unclassifiable/Attainment Camden County Unclassifiable/Attainment Candler County Unclassifiable/Attainment Carroll County Unclassifiable/Attainment Catoosa County Unclassifiable/Attainment Charlton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Chatham County Unclassifiable/Attainment Chattahoochee County Unclassifiable/Attainment Chattooga County Unclassifiable/Attainment Cherokee County Clarke County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clay County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clayton County Clinch County Unclassifiable/Attainment Cobb County Coffee County Unclassifiable/Attainment Colquitt County Unclassifiable/Attainment Columbia County Unclassifiable/Attainment Cook County Unclassifiable/Attainment Coweta County Crawford County Unclassifiable/Attainment Crisp County Unclassifiable/Attainment Dade County Unclassifiable/Attainment Dawson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Decatur County Unclassifiable/Attainment DeKalb County Dodge County Unclassifiable/Attainment Dooly County Unclassifiable/Attainment Dougherty County Douglas County Early County Unclassifiable/Attainment Echols County Unclassifiable/Attainment Effingham County Unclassifiable/Attainment Elbert County Unclassifiable/Attainment Emanuel County Unclassifiable/Attainment Evans County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fannin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fayette County Unclassifiable/Attainment Floyd County Unclassifiable/Attainment Forsyth County Franklin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fulton County Gilmer County Unclassifiable/Attainment Glascock County Unclassifiable/Attainment Glynn County Gordon County Unclassifiable/Attainment Grady County Unclassifiable/Attainment Greene County Unclassifiable/Attainment Gwinnett County Habersham County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hall County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hancock County Unclassifiable/Attainment Haralson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Harris County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hart County Unclassifiable/Attainment Heard County Unclassifiable/Attainment Henry County Houston County Unclassifiable/Attainment Irwin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jackson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jasper County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jeff Davis County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jefferson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jenkins County Unclassifiable/Attainment Johnson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jones County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lamar County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lanier County Unclassifiable/Attainment Laurens County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lee County Unclassifiable/Attainment Liberty County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lincoln County Unclassifiable/Attainment Long County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lowndes County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lumpkin County Unclassifiable/Attainment McDuffie County Unclassifiable/Attainment McIntosh County Unclassifiable/Attainment Macon County Unclassifiable/Attainment Madison County Unclassifiable/Attainment Marion County Unclassifiable/Attainment Meriwether County Unclassifiable/Attainment Miller County Unclassifiable/Attainment Mitchell County Unclassifiable/Attainment Monroe County Unclassifiable/Attainment Montgomery County Unclassifiable/Attainment Morgan County Unclassifiable/Attainment Murray County Unclassifiable/Attainment Muscogee County Unclassifiable/Attainment Newton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Oconee County Unclassifiable/Attainment Oglethorpe County Unclassifiable/Attainment Paulding County Peach County Unclassifiable/Attainment Pickens County Unclassifiable/Attainment Pierce County Unclassifiable/Attainment Pike County Unclassifiable/Attainment Polk County Unclassifiable/Attainment Pulaski County Unclassifiable/Attainment Putnam County Unclassifiable/Attainment Quitman County Unclassifiable/Attainment Rabun County Unclassifiable/Attainment Randolph County Unclassifiable/Attainment Richmond County Unclassifiable/Attainment Rockdale County Unclassifiable/Attainment Schley County Unclassifiable/Attainment Screven County Unclassifiable/Attainment Seminole County Unclassifiable/Attainment Spalding County Unclassifiable/Attainment Stephens County Unclassifiable/Attainment Stewart County Unclassifiable/Attainment Sumter County Unclassifiable/Attainment Talbot County Unclassifiable/Attainment Taliaferro County Unclassifiable/Attainment Tattnall County Unclassifiable/Attainment Taylor County Unclassifiable/Attainment Telfair County Unclassifiable/Attainment Terrell County Unclassifiable/Attainment Thomas County Unclassifiable/Attainment Tift County Unclassifiable/Attainment Toombs County Unclassifiable/Attainment Towns County Unclassifiable/Attainment Treutlen County Unclassifiable/Attainment Troup County Unclassifiable/Attainment Turner County Unclassifiable/Attainment Twiggs County Unclassifiable/Attainment Union County Unclassifiable/Attainment Upson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Walker County Unclassifiable/Attainment Walton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Ware County Unclassifiable/Attainment Warren County Unclassifiable/Attainment Washington County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wayne County Unclassifiable/Attainment Webster County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wheeler County Unclassifiable/Attainment White County Unclassifiable/Attainment Whitfield County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wilcox County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wilkes County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wilkinson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Worth County Unclassifiable/Attainment 1 Includes areas of Indian country located in each county or area, except as otherwise specified. 2 This date is April 15, 2015, unless otherwise noted.
    4. Section 81.315 is amended by revising the table entitled “Indiana—2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS (Primary)” to read as follows:
    § 81.315 Indiana. Indiana—2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS [Primary] Designated area 1 Designation Date 2 Type Classification Date 2 Type Louisville, KY-IN: Clark County Unclassifiable Floyd County Unclassifiable Chicago Area, IL-IN: Lake County Unclassifiable Porter County Unclassifiable Rest of State: Adams County Unclassifiable/Attainment Allen County Unclassifiable/Attainment Bartholomew County Unclassifiable/Attainment Benton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Blackford County Unclassifiable/Attainment Boone County Unclassifiable/Attainment Brown County Unclassifiable/Attainment Carroll County Unclassifiable/Attainment Cass County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clay County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clinton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Crawford County Unclassifiable/Attainment Daviess County Unclassifiable/Attainment DeKalb County Unclassifiable/Attainment Dearborn County Unclassifiable/Attainment Decatur County Unclassifiable/Attainment Delaware County Unclassifiable/Attainment Dubois County Unclassifiable/Attainment Elkhart County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fayette County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fountain County Unclassifiable/Attainment Franklin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fulton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Gibson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Grant County Unclassifiable/Attainment Greene County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hamilton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hancock County Unclassifiable/Attainment Harrison County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hendricks County Unclassifiable/Attainment Henry County Unclassifiable/Attainment Howard County Unclassifiable/Attainment Huntington County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jackson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jasper County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jay County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jefferson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jennings County Unclassifiable/Attainment Johnson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Knox County Unclassifiable/Attainment Kosciusko County Unclassifiable/Attainment LaGrange County Unclassifiable/Attainment La Porte County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lawrence County Unclassifiable/Attainment Madison County Unclassifiable/Attainment Marion County Unclassifiable/Attainment Marshall County Unclassifiable/Attainment Martin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Miami County Unclassifiable/Attainment Monroe County Unclassifiable/Attainment Montgomery County Unclassifiable/Attainment Morgan County Unclassifiable/Attainment Newton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Noble County Unclassifiable/Attainment Ohio County Unclassifiable/Attainment Orange County Unclassifiable/Attainment Owen County Unclassifiable/Attainment Parke County Unclassifiable/Attainment Perry County Unclassifiable/Attainment Pike County Unclassifiable/Attainment Posey County Unclassifiable/Attainment Pulaski County Unclassifiable/Attainment Putnam County Unclassifiable/Attainment Randolph County Unclassifiable/Attainment Ripley County Unclassifiable/Attainment Rush County Unclassifiable/Attainment Scott County Unclassifiable/Attainment Shelby County Unclassifiable/Attainment Spencer County Unclassifiable/Attainment St. Joseph County Unclassifiable/Attainment Starke County Unclassifiable/Attainment Steuben County Unclassifiable/Attainment Sullivan County Unclassifiable/Attainment Switzerland County Unclassifiable/Attainment Tippecanoe County Unclassifiable/Attainment Tipton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Union County Unclassifiable/Attainment Vanderburgh County Unclassifiable/Attainment Vermillion County Unclassifiable/Attainment Vigo County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wabash County Unclassifiable/Attainment Warren County Unclassifiable/Attainment Warrick County Unclassifiable/Attainment Washington County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wayne County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wells County Unclassifiable/Attainment White County Unclassifiable/Attainment Whitley County Unclassifiable/Attainment 1 Includes areas of Indian country located in each county or area, except as otherwise specified. 2 This date is April 15, 2015, unless otherwise noted.
    5. Section 81.318 is amended by revising the table entitled “Kentucky—2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS (Primary)” to read as follows:
    § 81.318 Kentucky.
    Kentucky—2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS [Primary] Designated area 1 Designation Date 2 Type Classification Date 2 Type Louisville, KY-IN: Bullitt County (part) Unclassifiable 2010 Census tracts: 201.01, 201.02, 201.03, 202.01, 202.02. 203, 204, 205, 206.01, 206.02, 207.01, 207.02, 208, 211.01 and 211.02 Jefferson County Unclassifiable Rest of State: Adair County Unclassifiable/Attainment Allen County Unclassifiable/Attainment Anderson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Ballard County Unclassifiable/Attainment Barren County Unclassifiable/Attainment Bath County Unclassifiable/Attainment Bell County Unclassifiable/Attainment Boone Unclassifiable/Attainment Bourbon County Unclassifiable/Attainment Boyd County Unclassifiable/Attainment Boyle County Unclassifiable/Attainment Bracken County Unclassifiable/Attainment Breathitt County Unclassifiable/Attainment Breckinridge County Unclassifiable/Attainment Bullitt County (remainder) Unclassifiable/Attainment Butler County Unclassifiable/Attainment Caldwell County Unclassifiable/Attainment Calloway County Unclassifiable/Attainment Campbell County Unclassifiable/Attainment Carlisle County Unclassifiable/Attainment Carroll County Unclassifiable/Attainment Carter County Unclassifiable/Attainment Casey County Unclassifiable/Attainment Christian County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clark County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clay County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clinton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Crittenden County Unclassifiable/Attainment Cumberland County Unclassifiable/Attainment Daviess County Unclassifiable/Attainment Edmonson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Elliott County Unclassifiable/Attainment Estill County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fayette County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fleming County Unclassifiable/Attainment Floyd County Unclassifiable/Attainment Franklin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fulton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Gallatin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Garrard County Unclassifiable/Attainment Grant County Unclassifiable/Attainment Graves County Unclassifiable/Attainment Grayson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Green County Unclassifiable/Attainment Greenup County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hancock County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hardin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Harlan County Unclassifiable/Attainment Harrison County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hart County Unclassifiable/Attainment Henderson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Henry County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hickman County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hopkins County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jackson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jessamine County Unclassifiable/Attainment Johnson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Kenton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Knott County Unclassifiable/Attainment Knox County Unclassifiable/Attainment Larue County Unclassifiable/Attainment Laurel County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lawrence County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lee County Unclassifiable/Attainment Leslie County Unclassifiable/Attainment Letcher County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lewis County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lincoln County Unclassifiable/Attainment Livingston County Unclassifiable/Attainment Logan County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lyon County Unclassifiable/Attainment McCracken County Unclassifiable/Attainment McCreary County Unclassifiable/Attainment McLean County Unclassifiable/Attainment Madison County Unclassifiable/Attainment Magoffin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Marion County Unclassifiable/Attainment Marshall County Unclassifiable/Attainment Martin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Mason County Unclassifiable/Attainment Meade County Unclassifiable/Attainment Menifee County Unclassifiable/Attainment Mercer County Unclassifiable/Attainment Metcalfe County Unclassifiable/Attainment Monroe County Unclassifiable/Attainment Montgomery County Unclassifiable/Attainment Morgan County Unclassifiable/Attainment Muhlenberg County Unclassifiable/Attainment Nelson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Nicholas County Unclassifiable/Attainment Ohio County Unclassifiable/Attainment Oldham County Unclassifiable/Attainment Owen County Unclassifiable/Attainment Owsley County Unclassifiable/Attainment Pendleton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Perry County Unclassifiable/Attainment Pike County Unclassifiable/Attainment Powell County Unclassifiable/Attainment Pulaski County Unclassifiable/Attainment Robertson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Rockcastle County Unclassifiable/Attainment Rowan County Unclassifiable/Attainment Russell County Unclassifiable/Attainment Scott County Unclassifiable/Attainment Shelby County Unclassifiable/Attainment Simpson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Spencer County Unclassifiable/Attainment Taylor County Unclassifiable/Attainment Todd County Unclassifiable/Attainment Trigg County Unclassifiable/Attainment Trimble County Unclassifiable/Attainment Union County Unclassifiable/Attainment Warren County Unclassifiable/Attainment Washington County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wayne County Unclassifiable/Attainment Webster County Unclassifiable/Attainment Whitley County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wolfe County Unclassifiable/Attainment Woodford County Unclassifiable/Attainment 1 Includes areas of Indian country located in each county or area, except as otherwise specified. 2 This date is April 15, 2015, unless otherwise noted. 6. Section 81.336 is amended by revising the table entitled “Ohio—2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS (Primary)” to read as follows:
    § 81.336 Ohio. Ohio—2012 Annual PM 2.5 NAAQS [Primary] Designated area 1 Designation Date 2 Type Classification Date 2 Type Cleveland, OH: Cuyahoga County Nonattainment Moderate. Lorain County Nonattainment Moderate. Rest of State: Adams County Unclassifiable/Attainment Allen County Unclassifiable/Attainment Ashland County Unclassifiable/Attainment Ashtabula County Unclassifiable/Attainment Athens County Unclassifiable/Attainment Auglaize County Unclassifiable/Attainment Belmont County Unclassifiable/Attainment Brown County Unclassifiable/Attainment Butler County Unclassifiable/Attainment Carroll County Unclassifiable/Attainment Champaign County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clark County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clermont County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clinton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Columbiana County Unclassifiable/Attainment Coshocton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Crawford County Unclassifiable/Attainment Darke County Unclassifiable/Attainment Defiance County Unclassifiable/Attainment Delaware County Unclassifiable/Attainment Erie County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fairfield County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fayette County Unclassifiable/Attainment Franklin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fulton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Gallia County Unclassifiable/Attainment Geauga County Unclassifiable/Attainment Greene County Unclassifiable/Attainment Guernsey County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hamilton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hancock County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hardin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Harrison County Unclassifiable/Attainment Henry County Unclassifiable/Attainment Highland County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hocking County Unclassifiable/Attainment Holmes County Unclassifiable/Attainment Huron County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jackson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jefferson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Knox County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lake County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lawrence County Unclassifiable/Attainment Licking County Unclassifiable/Attainment Logan County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lucas County Unclassifiable/Attainment Madison County Unclassifiable/Attainment Mahoning County Unclassifiable/Attainment Marion County Unclassifiable/Attainment Medina County Unclassifiable/Attainment Meigs County Unclassifiable/Attainment Mercer County Unclassifiable/Attainment Miami County Unclassifiable/Attainment Monroe County Unclassifiable/Attainment Montgomery County Unclassifiable/Attainment Morgan County Unclassifiable/Attainment Morrow County Unclassifiable/Attainment Muskingum County Unclassifiable/Attainment Noble County Unclassifiable/Attainment Ottawa County Unclassifiable/Attainment Paulding County Unclassifiable/Attainment Perry County Unclassifiable/Attainment Pickaway County Unclassifiable/Attainment Pike County Unclassifiable/Attainment Portage County Unclassifiable/Attainment Preble County Unclassifiable/Attainment Putnam County Unclassifiable/Attainment Richland County Unclassifiable/Attainment Ross County Unclassifiable/Attainment Sandusky County Unclassifiable/Attainment Scioto County Unclassifiable/Attainment Seneca County Unclassifiable/Attainment Shelby County Unclassifiable/Attainment Stark County Unclassifiable/Attainment Summit County Unclassifiable/Attainment Trumbull County Unclassifiable/Attainment Tuscarawas County Unclassifiable/Attainment Union County Unclassifiable/Attainment Van Wert County Unclassifiable/Attainment Vinton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Warren County Unclassifiable/Attainment Washington County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wayne County Unclassifiable/Attainment Williams County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wood County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wyandot County Unclassifiable/Attainment 1 Includes areas of Indian country located in each county or area, except as otherwise specified. 2 This date is April 15, 2015, unless otherwise noted.
    7. Section 81.339 is amended by revising the table entitled “Pennsylvania—2012 Annual PM 2.5 NAAQS (Primary)” to read as follows:
    § 81.339 Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania—2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS [Primary] Designated area 1 Designation Date 2 Type Classification Date 2 Type Allegheny County, PA: Allegheny County Nonattainment Moderate. Delaware County, PA: Delaware County Nonattainment Moderate. Lebanon County, PA: Lebanon County Nonattainment Moderate. Rest of State: AQCR 151 Northeast Pennsylvania-Upper Delaware Valley Interstate: Berks County Unclassifiable/Attainment Bradford County Unclassifiable/Attainment Carbon County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lackawanna County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lehigh County Unclassifiable/Attainment Luzerne County Unclassifiable/Attainment Monroe County Unclassifiable/Attainment Northampton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Pike County Unclassifiable/Attainment Schuylkill County Unclassifiable/Attainment Sullivan County Unclassifiable/Attainment Susquehanna County Unclassifiable/Attainment Tioga County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wayne County Unclassifiable/Attainment Wyoming County Unclassifiable/Attainment AQCR 178 Northwest Pennsylvania-Youngstown Interstate: Cameron County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clarion County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clearfield County Unclassifiable/Attainment Crawford County Unclassifiable/Attainment Elk County Unclassifiable/Attainment Erie County Unclassifiable/Attainment Forest County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jefferson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lawrence County Unclassifiable/Attainment McKean County Unclassifiable/Attainment Mercer County Unclassifiable/Attainment Potter County Unclassifiable/Attainment Venango County Unclassifiable/Attainment Warren County Unclassifiable/Attainment AQCR 45 Metropolitan Philadelphia Intrastate: Bucks County Unclassifiable/Attainment Chester County Unclassifiable/Attainment Montgomery County Unclassifiable/Attainment Philadelphia County Unclassifiable/Attainment AQCR 195 Central Pennsylvania Intrastate: Bedford County Unclassifiable/Attainment Blair County Unclassifiable/Attainment Cambria County Unclassifiable/Attainment Centre County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clinton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Columbia County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fulton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Huntingdon County Unclassifiable/Attainment Juniata County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lycoming County Unclassifiable/Attainment Mifflin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Montour County Unclassifiable/Attainment Northumberland County Unclassifiable/Attainment Snyder County Unclassifiable/Attainment Somerset County Unclassifiable/Attainment Union County Unclassifiable/Attainment AQCR 196 South Central Pennsylvania Intrastate: Adams County Unclassifiable/Attainment Cumberland County Unclassifiable/Attainment Dauphin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Franklin County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lancaster County Unclassifiable/Attainment Perry County Unclassifiable/Attainment York County Unclassifiable/Attainment AQCR 197 Southwest Pennsylvania Intrastate: Armstrong County Unclassifiable/Attainment Beaver County Unclassifiable/Attainment Butler County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fayette County Unclassifiable/Attainment Greene County Unclassifiable/Attainment Indiana County Unclassifiable/Attainment Washington County Unclassifiable/Attainment Westmoreland County Unclassifiable/Attainment 1 Includes areas of Indian country located in each county or area, except as otherwise specified. 2 This date is April 15, 2015, unless otherwise noted.
    8. Section 81.341 is amended by revising the table entitled “South Carolina—2012 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS (Primary)” to read as follows:
    § 81.341 South Carolina. South Carolina—2012 Annual PM 2.5 NAAQS [Primary] Designated area 1 Designation Date 2 Type Classification Date 2 Type Statewide: Abbeville County Unclassifiable/Attainment Aiken County Unclassifiable/Attainment Allendale County Unclassifiable/Attainment Anderson County Unclassifiable/Attainment Bamberg County Unclassifiable/Attainment Barnwell County Unclassifiable/Attainment Beaufort County Unclassifiable/Attainment Berkeley County Unclassifiable/Attainment Calhoun County Unclassifiable/Attainment Charleston County Unclassifiable/Attainment Cherokee County Unclassifiable/Attainment Chester County Unclassifiable/Attainment Chesterfield County Unclassifiable/Attainment Clarendon County Unclassifiable/Attainment Colleton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Darlington County Unclassifiable/Attainment Dillon County Unclassifiable/Attainment Dorchester County Unclassifiable/Attainment Edgefield County Unclassifiable/Attainment Fairfield County Unclassifiable/Attainment Florence County Unclassifiable/Attainment Georgetown County Unclassifiable/Attainment Greenwood County Unclassifiable/Attainment Greenville County Unclassifiable/Attainment Hampton County Unclassifiable/Attainment Horry County Unclassifiable/Attainment Jasper County Unclassifiable/Attainment Kershaw County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lancaster County Unclassifiable/Attainment Laurens County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lee County Unclassifiable/Attainment Lexington County Unclassifiable/Attainment McCormick County Unclassifiable/Attainment Marion County Unclassifiable/Attainment Marlboro County Unclassifiable/Attainment Newberry County Unclassifiable/Attainment Oconee County Unclassifiable/Attainment Orangeburg County Unclassifiable/Attainment Pickens County Unclassifiable/Attainment Richland County Unclassifiable/Attainment Saluda County Unclassifiable/Attainment Spartanburg County Unclassifiable/Attainment Sumter County Unclassifiable/Attainment Union County Unclassifiable/Attainment Williamsburg County Unclassifiable/Attainment York County Unclassifiable/Attainment 1 Includes areas of Indian country located in each county or area, except as otherwise specified. 2 This date is April 15, 2015, unless otherwise noted.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07948 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 6560-50-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 622 [Docket No. 140501394-5279-02] RIN 0648-XD869 Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; 2015 Commercial Accountability Measure and Closure for Blueline Tilefish in the South Atlantic Region AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Temporary rule; closure.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS implements accountability measures (AMs) for commercial blueline tilefish in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of the South Atlantic. Commercial landings for blueline tilefish, as estimated by the Science and Research Director, have reached the commercial annual catch limit (ACL). Therefore, NMFS is closing the commercial sector for blueline tilefish in the South Atlantic EEZ at 12:01 a.m., local time, April 7, 2015, and it will remain closed until the start of the next fishing season, January 1, 2016. This closure is necessary to protect the blueline tilefish resource.

    DATES:

    This rule is effective 12:01 a.m., local time, April 7, 2015, until 12:01 a.m., local time, January 1, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Britni LaVine, NMFS Southeast Region, telephone: 727-824-5305, email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The snapper-grouper fishery of the South Atlantic includes blueline tilefish and is managed under the Fishery Management Plan for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region (FMP). The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council and NMFS prepared the FMP, and the FMP is implemented under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act) by regulations at 50 CFR part 622.

    NMFS implemented management measures in Amendment 32 to the FMP for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region (Amendment 32). The final rule published in the Federal Register, and was effective, on March 30, 2015 (80 FR 16583). Amendment 32 contains management measures that end overfishing of blueline tilefish in the South Atlantic.

    NMFS is required to close the commercial sector for blueline tilefish when the commercial ACL is reached, or is projected to be reached, by filing a notification to that effect with the Office of the Federal Register, as specified in 50 CFR 622.193(z)(1)(i). The commercial ACL for blueline tilefish is 17,841 lb (8,093 kg), round weight. NMFS has determined that the commercial ACL for South Atlantic blueline tilefish has been reached. Accordingly, the commercial sector for South Atlantic blueline tilefish is closed effective April 7, 2015, until 12:01 a.m., local time, January 1, 2016.

    The operator of a vessel with a valid commercial vessel permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper having blueline tilefish onboard must have landed and bartered, traded, or sold such blueline tilefish prior to April 7, 2015. During the closure, all sale or purchase of blueline tilefish is prohibited and harvest or possession of blueline tilefish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is limited to the bag and possession limits specified in 50 CFR 622.187(b)(2)(iv) and 622.187(c)(1), respectively. These bag and possession limits apply in the South Atlantic on board a vessel for which a valid Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper has been issued, without regard to where such species were harvested, i.e., in state or Federal waters.

    Note that the recreational sector for blueline tilefish opened on January 1 and closed March 30, 2015, when the final rule for Amendment 32 became effective, because Amendment 32 implemented a seasonal closure for the recreational sector for blueline tilefish that extends from September 1 through April 30. Currently, the recreational sector for blueline tilefish is scheduled to reopen on May 1, 2015, and stay open through August 31, 2015, if the recreational ACL has not been met.

    Classification

    The Regional Administrator, Southeast Region, NMFS, has determined this temporary rule is necessary for the conservation and management of blueline tilefish and the South Atlantic snapper-grouper fishery and is consistent with the Magnuson-Stevens Act and other applicable laws.

    This action is taken under 50 CFR 622.193(z)(1)(i) and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866.

    These measures are exempt from the procedures of the Regulatory Flexibility Act because the temporary rule is issued without opportunity for prior notice and comment.

    This action responds to the best scientific information available. The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, NOAA (AA), finds that the need to immediately implement this action to close the commercial sector for blueline tilefish constitutes good cause to waive the requirements to provide prior notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to the authority set forth in 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B), as such prior notice and opportunity for public comment are unnecessary and contrary to the public interest. Such procedures are unnecessary because the regulations at 50 CFR 622.193(z)(1)(i) have already been subject to notice and comment, and all that remains is to notify the public of the closure. Such procedures are contrary to the public interest because there is a need to immediately implement this action to protect blueline tilefish, since the capacity of the fishing fleet allows for rapid harvest of the commercial ACL. Prior notice and opportunity for public comment would require time and would potentially result in a harvest well in excess of the established commercial ACL.

    For the aforementioned reasons, the AA also finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in the effectiveness of this action under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3).

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07946 Filed 4-2-15; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 622 [Docket No. 150105013-5291-02] RIN 0648-BE62 Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Reef Fish Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico; Red Grouper Recreational Management Measures AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS issues this final rule to implement management measures described in a framework action to the Fishery Management Plan for the Reef Fish Resources of the Gulf of Mexico (FMP), as prepared by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (Council). This final rule revises the daily bag limit for red grouper in the Gulf of Mexico (Gulf) and removes the recreational post-season bag limit reduction accountability measure (AM) for Gulf red grouper. Additionally, this rule corrects an error in the Gulf individual fishing quota (IFQ) multi-use provisions for the Grouper/Tilefish IFQ program. The purpose of this final rule is to modify the Gulf red grouper recreational management measures to improve recreational fishing opportunities by achieving optimal yield for the red grouper resource.

    DATES:

    This rule is effective May 7, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Electronic copies of the framework action, which includes an environmental assessment, a regulatory impact review, and a Regulatory Flexibility Act analysis may be obtained from the Southeast Regional Office Web site at http://sero.nmfs.noaa.gov/sustainable_fisheries/gulf_fisheries/reef_fish/index.html.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Richard Malinowski, telephone: 727-824-5305, email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Gulf reef fish fishery is managed under the FMP. The FMP was prepared by the Council and is implemented through regulations at 50 CFR part 622 under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act).

    On January 27, 2015, NMFS published a proposed rule for the framework action and requested public comment (80 FR 4240). The proposed rule and framework action outline the rationale for the actions contained in this final rule. A summary of the actions implemented by this final rule is provided below.

    Management Measures Contained in This Final Rule

    This final rule reduces the Gulf red grouper recreational bag limit from four fish to two fish within the four-fish aggregate grouper bag limit, and removes the post-season AM that reduces the daily bag limit the next fishing season when the previous fishing year's annual catch limit (ACL) is exceeded. The other post-season AMs currently codified in the regulations remain in effect without change.

    Additional Change to Codified Text

    In addition, this final rule corrects a mistake in the regulations that was implemented in the final rule for Amendment 32 to the FMP. NMFS changes “red grouper multi-use allocation” to “gag multi-use allocation” in § 622.22(a)(5)(ii)(B), where it erroneously stated that if red grouper is under a rebuilding plan, then “red grouper multi-use allocation” should be set to zero. This change is not related to the framework action.

    Comments and Responses

    NMFS received 28 comment submissions on the framework action and the proposed rule; 1 from a sport fishing club, 1 from a state agency, and 26 from individuals. All comments received were in regard to the bag limit reduction; no comments were received directly addressing the removal of the accountability measure. Fourteen submissions supported the bag limit reduction, which is expected to alleviate the need for in-season closures. Eight individuals specifically opposed the bag limit reduction. Other submissions were outside the scope of the rule, offering suggestions for alternative management options, such as different size and bag limits, regionalized regulations, or a tag system. These are options the Council has considered in the past, and could consider again. A summary of the comments addressing the actions being implemented by this rulemaking and NMFS' responses to those comments appears below.

    Comment 1: The new regulation could lead to overfishing of the Gulf red grouper resource.

    Response: NMFS disagrees that either the bag limit reduction or the removal of the post-season AM could lead to overfishing of Gulf red grouper. The two-fish bag limit, although primarily intended to extend the length of the open season, should reduce the probability of exceeding the ACL by the recreational sector. The AM that reduced the bag limit by one fish if the ACL was exceeded in the previous year was also intended to extend the length of the open season and to avoid in-season closures. However, it is difficult to implement this in-season bag limit reduction in a timely manner and the bag limit change in the middle of the season created confusion. The Council determined, and NMFS agrees, that removing this AM would increase the efficiency of operating in this recreational sector and reduce public confusion without increasing the risk of exceeding the ACL because there are other AMs that will remain in place.

    Comment 2: The two-fish bag limit is unnecessary and unreasonable because the Gulf red grouper stock is healthy and abundant; there is no shortage of red grouper.

    Response: NMFS agrees the stock is healthy. The latest stock assessment indicates the stock is not overfished or undergoing overfishing. However, the Council's decision to reduce the bag limit was not based on a need to limit the harvest of red grouper. This action is intended to extend the length of the open season and avoid in-season recreational closures.

    Comment 3: A longer recreational closed season is preferred rather than a reduction in the bag limit. Reducing the red grouper bag limit to two fish would reduce the incentive to fish so that, even with a longer open season, the net economic effects of the action would be negative. Fishermen usually harvest two or three red grouper per angler, but having the opportunity to harvest four fish is an incentive for the trip. Offshore harvest levels should be at least three fish per angler.

    Response: NMFS disagrees that it is preferable to have a longer closed season rather than a lower bag limit. Although it is not possible to reliably forecast changes in fishing effort or the associated economic impacts of the reduction in the red grouper bag limit with available data, public comments on this and similar rules indicate the majority of anglers prefer a longer open season. Longer open seasons provide greater flexibility to schedule trips and although some fishermen may harvest more than two fish per trip, and therefore choose to not fish under the lower limit, most anglers do not. The economic analysis in the framework document explains that in 2011-2012, when the red grouper bag limit was 4 fish, more than 90 percent of trips taken by anglers fishing from private vessels or charter vessels, and more than 98 percent of headboat trips, harvested 1 or 2 red grouper per trip. As a result, lowering the limit to two fish is not expected to adversely affect the harvest of most anglers, or their decision to fish. A longer open season with a reduced bag limit is expected to create more trips and result in greater economic benefits than a shorter season with a higher bag limit, which reduces the overall number of trips.

    Classification

    The Regional Administrator, Southeast Region, NMFS, has determined that this final rule is necessary for the conservation and management of Gulf red grouper and is consistent with the framework action, the FMP, the Magnuson-Stevens Act and other applicable law. This final rule has been determined to be not significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866.

    The Chief Counsel for Regulation of the Department of Commerce certified to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration during the proposed rule stage that this rule would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The factual basis for this determination was published in the proposed rule and is not repeated here. No comments were received regarding the certification to the Small Business Administration. Comments regarding the general net economic effects of the action are addressed in the comments and responses section of this final rule. No changes to the final rule were made in response to these comments. As a result, a final regulatory flexibility analysis was not required and none was prepared.

    List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 622

    Fisheries, Fishing, Gulf, Recreational, Red grouper.

    Dated: April 1, 2015. Eileen Sobeck, Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.

    For the reasons set out in the preamble, 50 CFR part 622 is amended as follows:

    PART 622—FISHERIES OF THE CARIBBEAN, GULF OF MEXICO, AND SOUTH ATLANTIC 1. The authority citation for part 622 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    2. In § 622.22, the last sentence in paragraph (a)(5)(ii)(B) is revised to read as follows:
    § 622.22 Individual fishing quota (IFQ) program for Gulf groupers and tilefishes.

    (a) * * *

    (5) * * *

    (ii) * * *

    (B) * * * However, if red grouper is under a rebuilding plan, the percentage of gag multi-use allocation is equal to zero.

    3. In § 622.38, the first sentence in paragraph (b)(2) is revised to read as follows:
    § 622.38 Bag and possession limits.

    (b) * * *

    (2) Groupers, combined, excluding goliath grouper—4 per person per day, but not to exceed 1 speckled hind or 1 warsaw grouper per vessel per day, or 2 gag or 2 red grouper per person per day. * * *

    4. In § 622.41, the second sentence in paragraph (e)(2)(ii) is revised and the third sentence in the same paragraph is removed to read as follows:
    § 622.41 Annual catch limits (ACLs), annual catch targets (ACTs), and accountability measures (AMs).

    (e) * * *

    (2) * * *

    (ii) * * * In addition, the notification will reduce the length of the recreational red grouper fishing season the following fishing year by the amount necessary to ensure red grouper recreational landings do not exceed the recreational ACT in the following fishing year.

    [FR Doc. 2015-08001 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 679 [Docket No. 141021887-5172-02] RIN 0648-XD844 Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Northern Rockfish in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Temporary rule; modification of closure.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS is opening directed fishing for northern rockfish in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area (BSAI). This action is necessary to fully use the 2015 total allowable catch (TAC) of northern rockfish in the BSAI.

    DATES:

    Effective 1200 hrs, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), April 2, 2015, through 2400 hrs, A.l.t., December 31, 2015. Comments must be received at the following address no later than 4:30 p.m., A.l.t., April 17, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments on this document, identified by “NOAA-NMFS-2014-0134” by any of the following methods:

    • Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Go to http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2014-0134, click the “Comment Now!” icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments.

    • Mail: Submit written comments to Glenn Merrill, Assistant Regional Administrator, Sustainable Fisheries Division, Alaska Region NMFS, Attn: Ellen Sebastian. Mail comments to P.O. Box 21668, Juneau, AK 99802-1668.

    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), confidential business information, or otherwise sensitive information submitted voluntarily by the sender will be publicly accessible. NMFS will accept anonymous comments (enter “N/A” in the required fields if you wish to remain anonymous). Attachments to electronic comments will be accepted in Microsoft Word, Excel, or Adobe PDF file formats only.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Steve Whitney, 907-586-7228.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

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

    Pursuant to the final 2015 and 2016 harvest specifications for groundfish in the BSAI (80 FR 11919, March 5, 2015), NMFS closed the directed fishery for northern rockfish under § 679.20(d)(1)(iii).

    As of April 1, 2015, NMFS has determined that approximately 2,300 metric tons of northern rockfish initial TAC remains unharvested in the BSAI. Therefore, in accordance with § 679.25(a)(1)(i), (a)(2)(i)(C), and (a)(2)(iii)(D), and to fully utilize the 2015 TAC of northern rockfish in the BSAI, NMFS is terminating the previous closure and is opening directed fishing for northern rockfish in the BSAI. This will enhance the socioeconomic well-being of harvesters in this area. The Administrator, Alaska Region (Regional Administrator) considered the following factors in reaching this decision: (1) The current catch of northern rockfish in the BSAI and, (2) the harvest capacity and stated intent on future harvesting patterns of vessels in participating in this fishery.

    Classification

    This action responds to the best available information recently obtained from the fishery. The Acting Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, NOAA (AA), finds good cause to waive the requirement to provide prior notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to the authority set forth at 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) and § 679.25(c)(1)(ii) as such requirement is impracticable and contrary to the public interest. This requirement is impracticable and contrary to the public interest as it would prevent NMFS from responding to the most recent fisheries data in a timely fashion and would delay the opening of northern rockfish in the BSAI. NMFS was unable to publish a notice providing time for public comment because the most recent, relevant data only became available as of April 1, 2015.

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

    Without this inseason adjustment, NMFS could not allow the fishery for northern rockfish in the BSAI to be harvested in an expedient manner and in accordance with the regulatory schedule. Under § 679.25(c)(2), interested persons are invited to submit written comments on this action to the above address until April 17, 2015.

    This action is required by § 679.20 and § 679.25 and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: April 2, 2015. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07942 Filed 4-2-15; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 679 [Docket No. 140918791-4999-02] RIN 0648-XD876 Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pacific Cod by Catcher/Processors Using Hook-and-Line Gear in the Western Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Temporary rule; closure.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for Pacific cod by catcher/processors using hook-and-line gear in the Western Regulatory Area of the Gulf of Alaska (GOA). This action is necessary to prevent exceeding the A season allowance of the 2015 Pacific cod total allowable catch apportioned to catcher/processors using hook-and-line gear in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA.

    DATES:

    Effective 1200 hours, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), April 2, 2015, through 1200 hours, A.l.t., June 10, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Obren Davis, 907-586-7228.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    NMFS manages the groundfish fishery in the GOA exclusive economic zone according to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska (FMP) prepared by the North Pacific Fishery Management Council under authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. Regulations governing fishing by U.S. vessels in accordance with the FMP appear at subpart H of 50 CFR part 600 and 50 CFR part 679. Regulations governing sideboard protections for GOA groundfish fisheries appear at subpart B of 50 CFR part 680.

    The A season allowance of the 2015 Pacific cod total allowable catch (TAC) apportioned to catcher/processors using hook-and-line gear in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA is 2,850 metric tons (mt), as established by the final 2015 and 2016 harvest specifications for groundfish of the GOA (80 FR 10250, February 25, 2015).

    In accordance with § 679.20(d)(1)(i), the Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS (Regional Administrator) has determined that the A season allowance of the 2015 Pacific cod TAC apportioned to catcher/processors using hook-and-line gear in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA will soon be reached. Therefore, the Regional Administrator is establishing a directed fishing allowance of 2,840 mt and is setting aside the remaining 10 mt as bycatch to support other anticipated groundfish fisheries. In accordance with § 679.20(d)(1)(iii), the Regional Administrator finds that this directed fishing allowance has been reached. Consequently, NMFS is prohibiting directed fishing for Pacific cod by catcher/processors using hook-and-line gear in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA. After the effective date of this closure the maximum retainable amounts at § 679.20(e) and (f) apply at any time during a trip.

    Classification

    This action responds to the best available information recently obtained from the fishery. The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, NOAA (AA), finds good cause to waive the requirement to provide prior notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to the authority set forth at 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) as such requirement is impracticable and contrary to the public interest. This requirement is impracticable and contrary to the public interest as it would prevent NMFS from responding to the most recent fisheries data in a timely fashion and would delay the directed fishing closure of Pacific cod by catcher/processors using hook-and-line gear in the Western Regulatory Area of the GOA. NMFS was unable to publish a notice providing time for public comment because the most recent, relevant data only became available as of April 1, 2015.

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

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

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: April 2, 2015. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07938 Filed 4-2-15; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE CODE 3510-22-P
    80 66 Tuesday, April 7, 2015 Proposed Rules SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION 13 CFR Parts 121, 124, 125, 126, 127, and 134 RIN 3245-AG24 Small Business Mentor Protégé Program; Small Business Size Regulations; Government Contracting Programs; 8(a) Business Development/Small Disadvantaged Business Status Determinations; HUBZone Program; Women-Owned Small Business Federal Contract Program; Rules of Procedure Governing Cases Before the Office of Hearings and Appeals AGENCY:

    U.S. Small Business Administration.

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule; extension of comment period.

    SUMMARY:

    The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is extending the comment period for the proposed rule published in the Federal Register on February 5, 2015. The comment period is scheduled to close on April 6, 2015. SBA is extending the comment period an additional 30 days in response to the significant level of interest generated by the proposed rule and requests from multiple stakeholders for an extension. Given the scope of the proposed rule and the nature of the issues raised by the comments received to date, SBA believes that affected businesses need more time to review the proposal and prepare their comments.

    DATES:

    The comment period for the proposed rule published on February 5, 2015 is extended to May 6, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, identified by RIN: 3245-AG24, by any of the following methods:

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

    • For mail, paper, disk, or CD/ROM submissions: Brenda Fernandez, U.S. Small Business Administration, Office of Policy, Planning and Liaison, 409 Third Street SW., 8th Floor, Washington, DC 20416.

    • Hand Delivery/Courier: Brenda Fernandez, U.S. Small Business Administration, Office of Policy, Planning and Liaison, 409 Third Street SW., 8th Floor, Washington, DC 20416.

    SBA will post all comments on www.regulations.gov. If you wish to submit confidential business information (CBI) as defined in the User Notice at www.regulations.gov, you must submit such information to Brenda Fernandez, U.S. Small Business Administration, Office of Policy, Planning and Liaison, 409 Third Street SW., 8th Floor, Washington, DC 20416, or send an email to [email protected] Highlight the information that you consider to be CBI and explain why you believe SBA should hold this information as confidential. SBA will review your information and determine whether it will make the information public.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Brenda Fernandez, Office of Policy, Planning and Liaison, 409 Third Street SW., Washington, DC 20416; (202) 207-7337; [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    In the rule published on February 5, 2015 at 80 FR 6618, SBA proposed to implement provisions of the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 and the National Defense Authorization Act of 2013, which pertain to the establishment of a Government-wide mentor protégé program for all small business concerns. The rule would also make minor changes to the mentor-protégé provisions for the 8(a) Business Development program in order to make the mentor-protégé rules for each of the programs as consistent as possible. The rule would amend the current joint venture provisions to clarify the conditions for creating and operating joint venture partnerships, including the effect of such partnerships on any mentor-protégé relationships. Finally, the rule would make several additional changes to current size, 8(a) Office of Hearings and Appeals or HUBZone regulations, concerning among other things, ownership and control, changes in primary industry, standards of review and interested party status for some appeals.

    Sean F. Crean, Director, Office of Government Contracting.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07887 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 8025-01-P
    CONSUMER PRODUCT SAFETY COMMISSION 16 CFR Part 1422 [Docket No. CPSC-2009-0087] Recreational Off-Highway Vehicles (ROVs); Notice of Extension of Comment Period AGENCY:

    U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

    ACTION:

    Extension of comment period.

    SUMMARY:

    The Consumer Product Safety Commission (Commission or CPSC) published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPR) in the Federal Register on November 19, 2014, concerning recreational off-highway vehicles (ROVs). The NPR invited the public to submit written comments by February 2, 2015. In response to two requests for an extension, the Commission extended the comment period to April 8, 2015. In response to two requests for an additional extension, the Commission is extending the comment period to June 19, 2015.

    DATES:

    Submit comments by June 19, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, identified by Docket No. CPSC-2009-0087, 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. The Commission does not accept comments submitted by electronic mail (email), except through: http://www.regulations.gov. The Commission encourages you to submit electronic comments by using the Federal eRulemaking Portal, as described above.

    Written Submissions

    Submit written submissions in the following way:

    Mail/Hand delivery/Courier to: Office of the Secretary, Consumer Product Safety Commission, Room 820, 4330 East West Highway, Bethesda, MD 20814; telephone (301) 504-7923.

    Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name and docket number for this notice. All comments received may be posted without change, including any personal identifiers, contact information, or other personal information provided, to: http://www.regulations.gov. Do not submit confidential business information, trade secret information, or other sensitive or protected information electronically. Such information should be submitted in writing.

    Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or comments received, go to: http://www.regulations.gov and insert the Docket No. CPSC-2009-0087 into the “Search” box and follow the prompts.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On November 19, 2014, the Commission published an NPR in the Federal Register proposing standards that would apply to ROVs. (79 FR 68964). The Commission issued the proposed rule under the authority of the Consumer Product Safety Act (CPSA). In response to requests for an extension of the comment period by the Recreational Off-Highway Vehicle Association (ROHVA) and the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (OPEI), the Commission extended the comment period to April 8, 2015. (80 FR 3535 (January 23, 2015)). ROHVA and OPEI have each requested another extension to the comment period. ROHVA asked for additional time to review documents provided by the Commission. OPEI noted a need for additional time for OPEI to complete and review “round robin” testing that OPEI is conducting to gauge the reproducibility and repeatability of tests the Commission proposed in the NPR. The Commission has considered the requests and is extending the comment period until June 19, 2015.

    Alberta E. Mills, Acting Secretary, U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07910 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6355-01-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 435 [EPA-HQ-OW-2014-0598; FRL-9917-78-OW] RIN 2040-AF35 Effluent Limitations Guidelines and Standards for the Oil and Gas Extraction Point Source Category AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    EPA proposes a Clean Water Act (CWA) regulation that would better protect human health and the environment and protect the operational integrity of publicly owned treatment works (POTWs) by establishing pretreatment standards that would prevent the discharge of pollutants in wastewater from onshore unconventional oil and gas extraction facilities to POTWs. Unconventional oil and gas (UOG) extraction wastewater can be generated in large quantities and contains constituents that are potentially harmful to human health and the environment. Because they are not typical of POTW influent wastewater, some UOG extraction wastewater constituents can be discharged, untreated, from the POTW to the receiving stream; can disrupt the operation of the POTW (e.g., by inhibiting biological treatment); can accumulate in biosolids (sewage sludge), limiting their use; and can facilitate the formation of harmful disinfection by-products (DBPs). Based on the information collected by EPA, the requirements in this proposal reflect current industry practices for unconventional oil and gas extraction facilities, therefore, EPA does not project the proposed rule will impose any costs or lead to pollutant removals, but will ensure that such current industry best practice is maintained over time.

    DATES:

    Comments on this proposed rule must be received on or before June 8, 2015. EPA will conduct a public hearing on the proposed pretreatment standards on May 29, 2015 at 1:00 p.m. in the EPA East Building, Room 1153, 1201 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments on the proposed rule, identified by Docket No. EPA-HQ-OW-2014-0598 by one of the following methods:

    http://www.regulations.gov: Follow the on-line instructions for submitting comments.

    Email: [email protected], Attention Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2014-0598.

    Mail: Water Docket, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Mail code: 4203M, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460. Attention Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2014-0598. Please include three copies.

    Hand Delivery: Water Docket, EPA Docket Center, EPA West Building Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC, Attention Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2014-0598. Such deliveries are only accepted during the Docket's normal hours of operation, and you should make special arrangements for deliveries of boxed information by calling 202-566-2426.

    Instructions: Direct your comments to Docket No. EPA-HQ-OW-2014-0598. EPA's policy is that all comments received will be included in the public docket without change and can be made available online at http://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 information that you consider to be CBI or otherwise protected through http://www.regulations.gov or email. The http://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 http://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 will 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 http://www.regulations.gov index. A detailed record index, organized by subject, is available on EPA's Web site at http://water.epa.gov/scitech/wastetech/guide/oilandgas/unconv.cfm. Although listed in the index, some information is not publicly available, e.g., 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. Publicly available docket materials are available either electronically in http://www.regulations.gov or in hard copy at the Water Docket in EPA Docket Center, EPA/DC, EPA West, Room 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 Water Docket is 202-566-2426.

    Pretreatment Hearing Information: EPA will conduct a public hearing on the proposed pretreatment standards on May 29, 2015 at 1:00 p.m. in the East Building, Room 1153, 1201 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC. Registration is not required for this public hearing, however pre-registration will be possible via a link on EPA's Web site: at http://water.epa.gov/scitech/wastetech/guide/oilandgas/unconv.cfm. During the hearing, the public will have an opportunity to provide oral comment to EPA on the proposed pretreatment standards. EPA will not address any issues raised during the hearing at that time but these comments will be included in the public record for the rule. For security reasons, we request that you bring photo identification with you to the meeting. Also, if you let us know in advance of your plans to attend, it will expedite the process of signing in. Seating will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis. Please note that parking is very limited in downtown Washington, and use of public transit is recommended. EPA Headquarters complex is located near the Federal Triangle Metro station. Upon exiting the Metro station, walk east to 12th Street. On 12th Street, walk south to Constitution Avenue. At the corner, turn right onto Constitution Avenue and proceed to EPA East Building entrance.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For technical information, contact Lisa Biddle, Engineering and Analysis Division, Telephone: 202-566-0350; email: [email protected] For economic information, contact Karen Milam, Engineering and Analysis Division, Telephone: 202-566-1915; email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Table of Contents I. Regulated Entities II. How To Submit Comments III. Supporting Documentation IV. Overview V. Legal Authority VI. Purpose and Summary of Proposed Rule A. Purpose of the Regulatory Action B. Summary of the Proposed Rule C. Summary of Costs and Benefits VII. Solicitation of Data and Comments VIII. Background A. Clean Water Act B. Effluent Limitations Guidelines and Standards Program 1. Best Practicable Control Technology Currently Available (BPT) 2. Best Conventional Pollutant Control Technology (BCT) 3. Best Available Technology Economically Achievable (BAT) 4. Best Available Demonstrated Control Technology (BADCT)/New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) 5. Pretreatment Standards for Existing Sources (PSES) and Pretreatment Standards for New Sources (PSNS) C. Oil and Gas Extraction Effluent Guidelines Rulemaking History 1. Subpart C: Onshore 2. Subpart E: Agricultural and Wildlife Use D. State Pretreatment Requirements That Apply to UOG Extraction Wastewater E. Related Federal Requirements in the Safe Drinking Water Act IX. Summary of Data Collection A. Site Visits and Contacts With Treatment Facilities and Vendors B. Meetings with Stakeholder Organizations 1. Stakeholder Organizations 2. State Stakeholders C. Secondary Data Sources D. Drilling Info Desktop® Data Set E. EPA Hydraulic Fracturing Study X. Description of the Oil and Gas Industry A. Economic Profile B. Industry Structure and Economic Performance C. Financial Performance XI. Scope XII. Unconventional Oil and Gas Extraction: Resources, Process, and Wastewater A. Unconventional Oil and Gas Extraction Resources B. Unconventional Oil and Gas Extraction Process 1. Well Drilling 2. Well Completion 3. Production C. UOG Extraction Wastewater 1. Drilling Wastewater 2. Produced Water D. UOG Extraction Wastewater Characteristics 1. Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) and TDS-Contributing Ions 2. Organic Constituents 3. Radioactive Constituents E. Wastewater Management and Disposal Practices 1. Injection into Disposal Wells 2. Reuse in Fracturing 3. Transfer to Centralized Waste Treatment Facilities 4. Transfer to POTWs XIII. Subcategorization XIV. Proposed Regulation A. Discussion of Options 1. PSES and PSNS Option Selection 2. Other Options Considered B. Pollutants of Concern C. POTW Pass Through Analysis XV. Environmental Impacts A. Pollutants B. Impacts From the Discharge of Pollutants Found in UOG Extraction Wastewater C. Impact on Surface Water Designated Uses 1. Drinking Water Uses 2. Aquatic Life Support Uses 3. Livestock Watering Uses 4. Irrigation Uses 5. Industrial Uses XVI. Non-Water Quality Environmental Impacts Associated With the Proposed Rule XVII. Implementation A. Implementation Deadline B. Upset and Bypass Provisions C. Variances and Modifications XVIII. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews A. Executive Order 12866: Regulatory Planning and Review and Executive Order 13563: Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review B. Paperwork Reduction Act C. Regulatory Flexibility Act D. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act E. Executive Order 13132: Federalism F. Executive Order 13175: Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal Governments G. Executive Order 13045: Protection of Children From Environmental Health and Safety Risks H. Executive Order 13211: Energy Effects I. National Technology Transfer Advancement Act J. Executive Order 12898: Federal Actions To Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations I. Regulated Entities

    Entities potentially regulated by this proposed action include:

    Category Examples of regulated entities North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) Code Industry Crude Petroleum and Natural Gas Extraction 211111 Natural Gas Liquid Extraction 211112

    This section is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather provides a guide for readers regarding entities likely to be regulated by this proposed action. Other types of entities that do not meet the above criteria could also be regulated. To determine whether your facility would be regulated by this proposed action, you should carefully examine the applicability criteria listed in 40 CFR 435.30 and the definitions in 40 CFR 435.33(b) of the proposed rule and detailed further in Section XI—Scope, of this preamble. If you still have questions regarding the proposed applicability of this action to a particular entity, consult the person listed for technical information in the preceding FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section.

    II. How To Submit Comments

    The public can submit comments in written or electronic form. (See the ADDRESSES section above.) Electronic comments must be identified by the Docket No. EPA-HQ-OW-2014-0598 and must be submitted as a MS Word, WordPerfect, or ASCII text file, avoiding the use of special characters and any form of encryption. EPA requests that any graphics included in electronic comments also be provided in hard-copy form. EPA also will accept comments and data on disks in the aforementioned file formats. Electronic comments received on this notice can be filed online at many Federal Depository Libraries. No confidential business information (CBI) should be sent by email.

    III. Supporting Documentation

    The proposed rule is supported by a number of documents including the Technical Development Document for Proposed Effluent Limitations Guidelines and Standards for Oil and Gas Extraction (TDD), Document No. EPA-821-R-15-003 (DCN SGE00704). This and other supporting documents are available in the public record for this proposed rule and on EPA's Web site at http://water.epa.gov/scitech/wastetech/guide/oilandgas/unconv.cfm.

    IV. Overview

    This preamble describes the reasons for the proposed rule; the legal authority for the proposed rule; a summary of the options considered for the proposal; background information, including terms, acronyms, and abbreviations used in this document; and the technical and economic methodologies used by the Agency to develop the proposed rule. In addition, this preamble also solicits comment and data from the public.

    V. Legal Authority

    EPA proposes this regulation under the authorities of sections 101, 301, 304, 306, 307, 308, and 501 of the CWA, 33 U.S.C. 1251, 1311, 1314, 1316, 1317, 1318, 1324, and 1361.

    VI. Purpose and Summary of Proposed Rule A. Purpose of the Regulatory Action

    Responsible development of America's oil and gas resources offers important economic, energy security, and environmental benefits. EPA is working with states and other stakeholders to understand and address potential impacts of hydraulic fracturing, an important process involved in producing unconventional oil and natural gas, so the public has confidence that oil and natural gas production will proceed in a safe and responsible manner.1 EPA is moving forward with several initiatives to provide regulatory clarity with respect to existing laws and using existing authorities where appropriate to enhance human health and environmental safeguards. This proposed rule would fill a gap in existing federal wastewater regulations to ensure that the current practice of not sending wastewater discharges from this sector to POTWs continues into the future. This proposed rule does not, however, address the practice of underground injection of wastewater discharges from this sector since such activity is not subject to the CWA but rather the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) (see TDD Chapter A.3).

    1 For more information on EPA's continued engagement with states and other stakeholders, see: http://www2.epa.gov/hydraulicfracturing.

    Recent advances in the well completion process, combining hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling, have made extraction of oil and natural gas from low permeability, low porosity geologic formations (referred to hereafter as unconventional oil and gas (UOG) resources) more technologically and economically feasible than it had been. As a result, according to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), in 2012, U.S. crude oil and natural gas production reached their highest levels in more than 15 and 30 years, respectively (DCN SGE00989). DOE projects natural gas production in the U.S. will likely increase by 56 percent by 2040, compared to 2012 production levels (DCN SGE00989). Similarly, DOE projects that by 2019, crude oil production in the United States (U.S.) will increase by 48 percent compared to 2012 production levels (DCN SGE00989).

    Hydraulic fracturing is used to extract oil and natural gas from highly impermeable rock formations, such as shale rock, by injecting fracturing fluids at high pressures to create a network of fissures in the rock formations and give the oil and/or natural gas a pathway to travel to the well for extraction. Pressure within the low permeability, low porosity geologic formations forces wastewaters, as well as oil and/or gas, to the surface. In this proposed rulemaking, oil and gas extraction includes production, field exploration, drilling, well completion, and/or well treatment; wastewater sources associated with these activities in low permeability, low porosity formations are collectively referred to as UOG extraction wastewater.

    Direct discharges of oil and gas extraction wastewater pollutants from onshore oil and gas resources, including UOG resources, to waters of the U.S. have been regulated since 1979 under the existing Oil and Gas Effluent Limitations Guidelines and Standards (ELGs) (40 CFR part 435), the majority of which fall under subpart C, the Onshore Subcategory. The limitations for direct dischargers in the Onshore Subcategory represent Best Practicable Control Technology Currently Available (BPT). Based on the availability and economic practicability of underground injection technologies, the BPT-based limitations for direct dischargers require zero discharge of pollutants to waters of the U.S. However, there are currently no requirements in subpart C that apply to onshore oil and gas extraction facilities that are “indirect dischargers,” i.e., those that send their discharges to POTWs (municipal wastewater treatment facilities) which treat the water before discharging it to waters of the U.S.

    UOG extraction wastewater can be generated in large quantities and contains constituents that are potentially harmful to human health and the environment. Wastewater from UOG wells often contains high concentrations of total dissolved solids (TDS) (salt content). The wastewater can also contain various organic chemicals, inorganic chemicals, metals, and naturally-occurring radioactive materials (referred to as technologically enhanced naturally occurring radioactive material or TENORM).2 This potentially harmful wastewater creates a need for appropriate wastewater management infrastructure and management practices. Historically, operators primarily managed their wastewater via underground injection (where available). Where UOG wells were drilled in areas with limited underground injection wells, and/or there was a lack of wastewater management alternatives, it became more common for operators to look to public and private wastewater treatment facilities to manage their wastewater.

    2 Naturally occurring radioactive materials that have been concentrated or exposed to the accessible environment as a result of human activities such as manufacturing, mineral extraction, or water processing is referred to as technologically enhanced naturally occurring radioactive material (TENORM). “Technologically enhanced” means that the radiological, physical, and chemical properties of the radioactive material have been altered by having been processed, or beneficiated, or disturbed in a way that increases the potential for human and/or environmental exposures. (See EPA 402-r-08-005-v2)

    POTWs collect wastewater from homes, commercial buildings, and industrial facilities and pipe it to their sewage treatment plant. In some cases, industrial dischargers can haul wastewater to the treatment plant by tanker truck. The industrial wastewater, commingled with domestic wastewater, is treated by the POTW and discharged to a receiving waterbody. However, most POTWs are designed primarily to treat municipally generated, not industrial, wastewater. They typically provide at least secondary level treatment and, thus, are designed to remove suspended solids and organic material using biological treatment. As mentioned previously, wastewater from UOG extraction can contain high concentrations of TDS, radioactive elements, metals, chlorides, sulfates, and other dissolved inorganic constituents that POTWs are not designed to remove. Because they are not typical of POTW influent wastewater, some UOG extraction wastewater constituents can be discharged, untreated, from the POTW to the receiving stream; can disrupt the operation of the POTW (e.g., by inhibiting biological treatment); can accumulate in biosolids (sewage sludge), limiting their use; and can facilitate the formation of harmful DBPs.

    Under section 307(b) of the CWA, there are general and specific prohibitions on the discharge to POTWs of pollutants in specified circumstances in order to prevent “pass through” or “interference.” Pass through is defined as whenever the introduction of pollutants from a user will result in a discharge that causes or contributes to a violation of any requirement of the POTW permit. See 40 CFR 403.3(p). Interference means a discharge that, among other things, inhibits or disrupts the POTW or prevents biosolids use consistent with the POTW's chosen method of disposal. See 40 CFR 403.3(k). These general and specific prohibitions must be implemented through local limits established by POTWs in certain cases. See 40 CFR 403.5(c). POTWs with approved pretreatment programs must develop and enforce local limits to implement the general prohibitions on user discharges that pass through or interfere with the POTW or discharges to the POTW prohibited under the specific prohibitions in 40 CFR 403.5(b). In the case of POTWs not required to develop a pretreatment program, the POTWs must develop local limits where there is interference or pass through and the limits are necessary to ensure compliance with the POTW's National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit or biosolids use.

    Under section 307(b) of the CWA, EPA is authorized to establish nationally applicable pretreatment standards for industrial categories that discharge indirectly (i.e., requirements for an industrial discharge category that sends its wastewater to any POTW) for key pollutants, such as TDS and its constituents, not susceptible to treatment by POTWs or for pollutants that would interfere with the operation of POTWs. Generally, EPA designs nationally applicable pretreatment standards for categories of industry (also referred to as categorical pretreatment standards) to ensure that wastewaters from direct and indirect industrial dischargers are subject to similar levels of treatment. EPA, in its discretion under section 304(g) of the Act, periodically evaluates indirect dischargers not subject to categorical pretreatment standards to identify potential candidates for new pretreatment standards. To date, EPA has not established nationally applicable pretreatment standards for the onshore oil and gas extraction point source subcategory.

    To legally discharge wastewater, the POTW must have an NPDES permit that limits the type and quantity of pollutants that it can discharge. Discharges from POTWs are subject to the secondary treatment effluent limitations at 40 CFR part 133, which address certain conventional pollutants but do not address the main parameters of concern in UOG extraction wastewater (e.g., TDS, chloride, radionuclides, etc.). POTWs are also subject to water quality-based effluent limitations (WQBELs) where necessary to protect state water quality standards, as required under CWA section 301(b)(1)(C).

    It is currently uncommon for POTWs to establish local limits for some of the parameters of concern identified for this proposed rulemaking. This is due to a number of factors, including lack of sufficient information regarding pollutants in the wastewater being sent to POTWs; lack of national water quality recommendations for key pollutants, such as TDS; and lack of state water quality criteria for such key pollutants in some states, all of which can create significant informational hurdles to including appropriate WQBELs in POTW permits. Where a POTW's permit does not contain a WQBEL for all of the constituents of concern in the wastewater being sent to POTWs, it is difficult to demonstrate pass through of industrial pollutants (because “pass through” here means making the POTW exceed its permit limits), and thus difficult for POTWs to establish local limits to implement the general prohibition in the pretreatment regulations. See Section XV. for additional information.

    As a result of the gap in federal CWA regulations, increases in onshore oil and gas extraction from UOG resources and the related generation of wastewater requiring management, concerns over the level of treatment provided by public wastewater treatment facilities, as well as potential interference with treatment processes, and concerns over water quality and aquatic life impacts that can result from inadequate treatment, EPA proposes technology-based categorical pretreatment standards under the CWA for discharges of pollutants into POTWs from existing and new onshore UOG extraction facilities in subpart C of 40 CFR part 435. Consistent with existing BPT-based requirements for direct dischargers in this subcategory, EPA proposes pretreatment standards for existing and new sources (PSES and PSNS, respectively) that would prohibit the indirect discharge of wastewater pollutants associated with onshore UOG extraction facilities.

    Based on the information reviewed as part of this proposed rulemaking, this proposed prohibition reflects current industry practice. EPA has not identified any existing onshore UOG extraction facilities that currently discharge UOG extraction wastewater to POTWs. However, because onshore unconventional oil and gas extraction facilities have discharged to POTWs in the past, and because the potential remains that some facilities can consider discharging to POTWs in the future, EPA proposes this rule.

    B. Summary of the Proposed Rule

    EPA proposes pretreatment standards for existing and new sources (PSES and PSNS, respectively) that would prohibit the indirect discharge of wastewater pollutants associated with onshore UOG extraction facilities. EPA is defining UOG extraction wastewater as sources of wastewater pollutants associated with production, field exploration, drilling, well completion, or well treatment for unconventional oil and gas extraction (e.g., produced water (which includes formation water, injection water, and any chemicals added downhole or during the oil/water separation process); drilling muds; drill cuttings; produced sand). According to sources surveyed by EPA (see Section IX), there are no known discharges to POTWs from UOG extraction at the time of this proposal. UOG extraction wastewater is typically managed through disposal via underground injection wells, reuse in subsequent fracturing jobs, or transfer to a privately owned wastewater treatment facility (see Section XII.E). EPA proposes PSES and PSNS that would require zero discharge of pollutants and be effective on the effective date of this rule.

    EPA does not propose pretreatment standards for wastewater pollutants associated with conventional oil and gas extraction facilities at this time (see Section XIV). EPA proposes to reserve such standards to a future rulemaking, if appropriate.

    C. Summary of Costs and Benefits

    Because the data reviewed by EPA show that the UOG extraction industry is not currently managing wastewaters by sending them to POTWs, the proposed rule causes no incremental change to current industry practice that EPA measured as compliance costs or monetized benefits.

    Still, EPA has considered that while states, localities, and POTWs are not currently approving these wastewaters for acceptance at POTWs, some POTWs continue to receive requests to accept UOG extraction wastewater (DCN SGE00742; DCN SGE00743; DCN SGE00762). This proposed rule would provide regulatory certainty and would eliminate the burden on POTWs to analyze such requests.

    The proposed rule would also eliminate the need to develop requirements in states where UOG extraction is not currently occurring, but is likely to occur in the future. There are few states where existing regulations address UOG extraction wastewater discharges to POTWs (see Section VIII.D. and TDD Chapter A.2.). While EPA knows there will likely be some reduction in state and POTW staff time and resources, EPA did not attempt to estimate, quantitatively, monetary savings associated with the reduced burden to states and localities that would result from this proposed rule.

    Most POTWs are not able to sufficiently treat TDS and many other pollutants in UOG extraction wastewater, and thus this proposed rule would potentially prevent elevated TDS and the presence of other pollutants in POTW effluent. Prevention of the discharge of TDS accomplished by the proposed rule would further protect water quality because national water quality criteria recommendations have not yet been established for many constituents of TDS.

    The proposed rule could impose some costs on industry if discharging wastewaters to POTWs becomes economically attractive to UOG operations relative to other management options such as reuse or disposal via underground injection wells in the future. EPA did not estimate these potential compliance costs or environmental benefits because of the uncertainty about future demand for POTWs to accept UOG extraction wastewaters and the associated incremental costs or benefits.

    VII. Solicitation of Data and Comments

    EPA solicits comments on the proposed rule, including EPA's rationale as described in this preamble. EPA seeks comments on issues specifically identified in this document as well as any other issues that are not specifically addressed in this document. Comments are most helpful when accompanied by specific examples and supporting data. Specifically, EPA solicits information and data on the following topics.

    1. EPA's proposed definitions of UOG and UOG extraction wastewater and specifically whether the proposed definition of unconventional oil and gas is sufficiently clear to enable oil and gas extraction operators and/or pretreatment authorities to determine whether specific wastewaters are from conventional or unconventional sources. See Section XII.

    2. Whether or not there are any existing onshore UOG extraction facilities that currently discharge UOG extraction wastewater to POTWs in the U.S. See Section XII.E.4. If existing discharges to POTWs are identified, EPA requests comment on whether or not the proposed effective date remains appropriate. See Section XVII.

    3. Costs and benefits to POTWs, states, and localities associated with the proposed rule. See Section VI.C.

    4. Volumes of, and pollutants and concentrations in, wastewater generated from UOG extraction. See Section XII.

    5. The nature and frequency of requests received by POTWs to accept UOG extraction wastewater, and the likelihood that such requests will continue to be submitted in the future. EPA is particularly interested in hearing from POTWs and states on this matter. See Section VI.C. and Section XIV.A.2.

    6. Volumes of, and pollutants and concentrations in, wastewater generated from conventional oil and gas extraction. See Section XIV.A.2.c.

    7. The prevalence of conventional oil and gas wastewater discharges to POTWs, including information on any pretreatment that could be applied, geologic formations the gas or oil is extracted from, and locations within the U.S. See Section XII. and Section XIV.A.2.

    8. Removal and “pass through” of UOG extraction wastewater pollutants at POTWs. See Section XIV. and Section XII.E.4.

    9. The environmental impacts of UOG extraction wastewater discharges to POTWs. See Section XV.

    VIII. Background A. Clean Water Act

    Congress passed the Federal Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972, also known as the CWA, to “restore and maintain the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of the Nation's waters.” 33 U.S.C. 1251(a). The CWA establishes a comprehensive program for protecting our nation's waters. Among its core provisions, the CWA prohibits the discharge of pollutants from a point source to waters of the U.S., except as authorized under the CWA. Under section 402 of the CWA, discharges can be authorized through a NPDES permit. The CWA establishes a two-pronged approach for these permits, technology-based controls that establish the floor of performance for all dischargers, and water quality-based limits where the technology-based limits are insufficient for the discharge to meet applicable water quality standards. To serve as the basis for the technology-based controls, the CWA authorizes EPA to establish national technology-based effluent limitations guidelines and new source performance standards for discharges from different categories of point sources, such as industrial, commercial, and public sources, that discharge directly into waters of the U.S.

    The CWA also authorizes EPA to promulgate nationally applicable pretreatment standards that restrict pollutant discharges from facilities that discharge pollutants indirectly, by sending wastewater to POTWs, as outlined in sections 307(b) and (c) and 33 U.S.C. 1317(b) and (c). Specifically, the CWA authorizes that EPA establish pretreatment standards for those pollutants in wastewater from indirect dischargers that EPA determines are not susceptible to treatment by a POTW or which would interfere with POTW operations. Pretreatment standards must be established to prevent the discharge of any pollutant that can pass through, interfere with, or are otherwise incompatible with POTW operations. CWA sections 307(b) and (c). The legislative history of the 1977 CWA amendments explains that pretreatment standards are technology-based and analogous to BAT effluent limitations for the removal of toxic pollutants. As further explained in the legislative history, the combination of pretreatment and treatment by the POTW is intended to achieve the level of treatment that would be required if the industrial source were making a direct discharge. Conf. Rep. No. 95-830, at 87 (1977), reprinted in U.S. Congress. Senate. Committee on Public Works (1978), A Legislative History of the CWA of 1977, Serial No. 95-14 at 271 (1978).

    Direct dischargers (those discharging directly to surface waters) must comply with effluent limitations in NPDES permits. Technology-based effluent limitations in NPDES permits for direct dischargers are derived from effluent limitations guidelines (CWA sections 301 and 304) and new source performance standards (CWA section 306) promulgated by EPA, or based on best professional judgment (BPJ) where EPA has not promulgated an applicable effluent guideline or new source performance standard (CWA section 402(a)(1)(B) and 40 CFR 125.3). Additional limitations based on water quality standards are also required to be included in the permit where necessary to meet water quality standards. CWA section 301(b)(1)(C). The effluent guidelines and new source performance standards are established by regulation for categories of industrial dischargers and are based on the degree of control that can be achieved using various levels of pollution control technology, as specified in the Act.

    EPA promulgates national effluent guidelines and new source performance standards for major industrial categories for three classes of pollutants: (1) Conventional pollutants (total suspended solids, oil and grease, biochemical oxygen demand (BOD5), fecal coliform, and pH), as outlined in CWA section 304(a)(4) and 40 CFR 401.16; (2) toxic pollutants (e.g., metals such as arsenic, mercury, selenium, and chromium; and organic pollutants such as benzene, benzo-a-pyrene, phenol, and naphthalene), as outlined in section 307(a) of the Act, 40 CFR 401.15 and 40 CFR part 423, appendix A; and (3) nonconventional pollutants, which are those pollutants that are not categorized as conventional or toxic (e.g., ammonia-N, phosphorus, and TDS).

    B. Effluent Limitations Guidelines and Standards Program

    EPA develops ELGs that are technology-based regulations for specific categories of dischargers. EPA bases these regulations on the performance of control and treatment technologies. The legislative history of CWA section 304(b), which is the heart of the effluent guidelines program, describes the need to press toward higher levels of control through research and development of new processes, modifications, replacement of obsolete plants and processes, and other improvements in technology, taking into account the cost of controls. Congress has also stated that EPA need not consider water quality impacts on individual water bodies as the guidelines are developed; see Statement of Senator Muskie (October 4, 1972), reprinted in U.S. Senate Committee on Public Works, Legislative History of the Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972, Serial No. 93-1, at 170).

    There are four types of standards applicable to direct dischargers (facilities that discharge directly to surface waters), and two types of standards applicable to indirect dischargers (facilities that discharge to POTWs), described in detail below. Subsections 1 through 4 describe standards for direct discharges and subsection 5 describes standards for indirect discharges.

    1. Best Practicable Control Technology Currently Available (BPT)

    Traditionally, EPA defines BPT effluent limitations based on the average of the best performances of facilities within the industry, grouped to reflect various ages, sizes, processes, or other common characteristics. BPT effluent limitations control conventional, toxic, and nonconventional pollutants. In specifying BPT, EPA looks at a number of factors. EPA first considers the cost of achieving effluent reductions in relation to the effluent reduction benefits. The Agency also considers the age of equipment and facilities, the processes employed, engineering aspects of the control technologies, any required process changes, non-water quality environmental impacts (including energy requirements), and such other factors as the Administrator deems appropriate. See CWA section 304(b)(1)(B). If, however, existing performance is uniformly inadequate, EPA can establish limitations based on higher levels of control than what is currently in place in an industrial category, when based on an Agency determination that the technology is available in another category or subcategory, and can be practically applied.

    2. Best Conventional Pollutant Control Technology (BCT)

    The 1977 amendments to the CWA require EPA to identify additional levels of effluent reduction for conventional pollutants associated with BCT technology for discharges from existing industrial point sources. In addition to other factors specified in section 304(b)(4)(B), the CWA requires that EPA establish BCT limitations after consideration of a two-part “cost reasonableness” test. EPA explained its methodology for the development of BCT limitations in July 9, 1986 (51 FR 24974). Section 304(a)(4) designates the following as conventional pollutants: BOD5, total suspended solids (TSS), fecal coliform, pH, and any additional pollutants defined by the Administrator as conventional. The Administrator designated oil and grease as an additional conventional pollutant on July 30, 1979 (44 FR 44501; 40 CFR part 401.16).

    3. Best Available Technology Economically Achievable (BAT)

    BAT represents the second level of stringency for controlling direct discharge of toxic and nonconventional pollutants. In general, BAT-based effluent guidelines and new source performance standards represent the best available economically achievable performance of facilities in the industrial subcategory or category. Following the statutory language, EPA considers the technological availability and the economic achievability in determining what level of control represents BAT. CWA section 301(b)(2)(A). Other statutory factors that EPA considers in assessing BAT are the cost of achieving BAT effluent reductions, the age of equipment and facilities involved, the process employed, potential process changes, and non-water quality environmental impacts, including energy requirements and such other factors as the Administrator deems appropriate. CWA section 304(b)(2)(B). The Agency retains considerable discretion in assigning the weight to be accorded these factors. Weyerhaeuser Co. v. Costle, 590 F.2d 1011, 1045 (D.C. Cir. 1978).

    4. Best Available Demonstrated Control Technology (BADCT)/New Source Performance Standards (NSPS)

    NSPS reflect effluent reductions that are achievable based on the best available demonstrated control technology (BADCT). Owners of new facilities have the opportunity to install the best and most efficient production processes and wastewater treatment technologies. As a result, NSPS should represent the most stringent controls attainable through the application of the BADCT for all pollutants (that is, conventional, nonconventional, and toxic pollutants). In establishing NSPS, EPA is directed to take into consideration the cost of achieving the effluent reduction and any non-water quality environmental impacts and energy requirements. CWA section 306(b)(1)(B).

    5. Pretreatment Standards for Existing Sources (PSES) and New Sources (PSNS)

    As discussed above, section 307(b) of the Act calls for EPA to issue pretreatment standards for discharges of pollutants from existing sources to POTWs. Section 307(c) of the Act calls for EPA to promulgate pretreatment standards for new sources (PSNS). Both standards are designed to prevent the discharge of pollutants that pass through, interfere with, or are otherwise incompatible with the operation of POTWs. Categorical pretreatment standards for existing sources are technology-based and are analogous to BPT and BAT effluent limitations guidelines, and thus the Agency typically considers the same factors in promulgating PSES as it considers in promulgating BAT. See Natural Resources Defense Council v. EPA, 790 F.2d 289, 292 (3rd Cir. 1986). Similarly, in establishing pretreatment standards for new sources, the Agency typically considers the same factors in promulgating PSNS as it considers in promulgating NSPS (BADCT).

    C. Oil and Gas Extraction Effluent Guidelines Rulemaking History

    EPA promulgated the first Oil and Gas Extraction ELGs (40 CFR part 435) in 1979, and substantially amended the regulation in 1993 (Offshore), 1996 (Coastal), and 2001 (Synthetic-based drilling fluids). The Oil and Gas Extraction industry is subcategorized in 40 CFR part 435 as follows: (1) Subpart A: Offshore; (2) subpart C: Onshore; (3) subpart D: Coastal; (4) subpart E: Agricultural and Wildlife Water Use; and (5) subpart F: Stripper.

    The existing subpart C regulation covers wastewater discharges from field exploration, drilling, production, well treatment, and well completion activities in the oil and gas industry. Although unconventional oil and gas resources occur in offshore and coastal regions, recent development of UOG resources in the U.S. has occurred primarily onshore in regions to which the regulations in subpart C (Onshore) and subpart E (Agricultural and Wildlife Water Use) apply and thus, the gap in onshore regulations is the focus of this proposed rulemaking effort. For this reason, only the regulations that apply to onshore oil and gas extraction are described in more detail here.

    1. Subpart C: Onshore

    Subpart C applies to facilities engaged in the production, field exploration, drilling, well completion, and well treatment in the oil and gas extraction industry which are located landward of the inner boundary of the territorial seas—and which are not included in the definition of other subparts—including subpart D (Coastal). The regulations at 40 CFR 435.32 specify the following for BPT: There shall be no discharge of waste water pollutants into navigable waters from any source associated with production, field exploration, drilling, well completion, or well treatment (i.e., produced water, drilling muds, drill cuttings, and produced sand). The existing regulations do not include national categorical pretreatment standards for discharges to POTWs. The existing oil and gas extraction ELGs did not establish requirements that would apply to privately-owned wastewater treatment facilities that accept oil and gas extraction wastewaters but that are not engaged in production, field exploration, drilling, well completion, or well treatment. Discharges from such facilities are not subject to 40 CFR part 435, but rather are subject to requirements in 40 CFR part 437, the Centralized Waste Treatment Category.

    2. Subpart E: Agricultural and Wildlife Use

    Subpart E applies to onshore facilities located in the continental U.S. and west of the 98th meridian for which the produced water has a use in agriculture or wildlife propagation when discharged into navigable waters. Definitions in 40 CFR 435.51(c) explain that the term “use in agricultural or wildlife propagation” means that (1) the produced water is of good enough quality to be used for wildlife or livestock watering or other agricultural uses; and (2) the produced water is actually put to such use during periods of discharge. The regulations at 40 CFR 435.52 specify that the only allowable discharge is produced water, with an oil and grease concentration not exceeding 35 milligrams per liter (mg/L). The BPT regulations prohibit the discharge of waste pollutants into navigable waters from any source (other than produced water) associated with production, field exploration, drilling, well completion, or well treatment (i.e., drilling muds, drill cuttings, produced sands).

    D. State Pretreatment Requirements That Apply to UOG Extraction Wastewater

    In addition to applicable federal requirements, some states regulate the management, storage, and disposal of UOG extraction wastewater, including regulations concerning pollutant discharges to POTWs from oil and gas extraction facilities. In addition to pretreatment requirements, some states have indirectly addressed the issue of pollutant discharges to POTWs by limiting the management and disposal options available for operators to use.

    During initial development of Marcellus shale gas resources, some operators managed UOG wastewater by transfer to POTWs. EPA did not identify other areas in the U.S. where POTWs routinely accepted UOG extraction wastewaters. Refer to TDD Chapter A.2 which summarizes how Pennsylvania, Ohio, and West Virginia responded to UOG extraction wastewater discharges into their POTWs. EPA did not identify any state level requirements that require zero discharges of pollutants from UOG operations to POTWs in the same manner as the proposed rule.

    E. Related Federal Requirements in the Safe Drinking Water Act

    As required by the SDWA section 1421, EPA has promulgated regulations to protect underground sources of drinking water through Underground Injection Control (UIC) programs that regulate the injection of fluids underground. These regulations are found at 40 CFR parts 144-148, and specifically prohibit any underground injection not authorized by UIC permit. 40 CFR 144.11. The regulations classify underground injection into six classes; wells that inject fluids brought to the surface in connection with oil and gas production are classified as Class II UIC wells. Thus, onshore oil and gas extraction facilities that seek to meet the zero discharge requirements of the existing ELGs or proposed pretreatment standard through underground injection of wastewater must obtain a Class II UIC permit for such disposal.

    IX. Summary of Data Collection

    In developing the proposed rule, EPA considered information collected through site visits and telephone contacts with UOG facility operators, facilities that treat and/or dispose of UOG extraction wastewater, and wastewater management equipment vendors. EPA also collected information through outreach to stakeholders including industry organizations, environmental organizations, and state regulators. EPA conducted an extensive review of published information and participated in industry conferences and webinars. The following describes EPA's data collection activities that support the proposed rule.

    A. Site Visits and Contacts With Treatment Facilities and Vendors

    EPA conducted seven site visits between May, 2012 and September, 2013 to UOG extraction companies and UOG extraction wastewater treatment facilities. The purpose of these visits was to collect information about facility operations, wastewater generation and management practices, and wastewater treatment and reuse. Six of the seven visits were to facilities in Pennsylvania, and one was in Arkansas, however, information collected often covered operations beyond just those visited during the site visits, at times including company operations in many UOG formations across the U.S. In addition to site visits, EPA conducted 11 telephone conferences or meetings with UOG operators and facilities that treat and/or dispose of UOG extraction wastewater. EPA collected detailed information from the facilities visited and contacted, such as information about the operations associated with wastewater generation, wastewater treatment, and reuse. EPA also contacted 11 vendors of equipment and processes used to manage and treat UOG extraction wastewater. EPA prepared site visit and telephone meeting reports, and telephone call reports summarizing the collected information. EPA has included in the public record site visit reports, meeting reports, and telephone contact reports that contain all information collected for which facilities have not asserted a claim of CBI.

    B. Meetings With Stakeholder Organizations

    Since announcing initiation of this proposed rulemaking activity, EPA has actively reached out to interested stakeholders to solicit input from well operators, industry trade associations, interested regulatory authorities, technology vendors, and environmental organizations. Stakeholder involvement in the regulatory development process is essential to the success of this effort. EPA will continue to engage with the affected regulated sector and concerned stakeholders throughout the rulemaking process.

    1. Stakeholder Organizations

    In addition to the site visit related activities described above, EPA participated in multiple meetings with industry stakeholders, their representatives, and/or their members, including America's Natural Gas Alliance (ANGA), American Petroleum Institute (API) and the Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA). The purpose of the meetings was to discuss EPA's thinking concerning a pretreatment standard for the UOG extraction industry, to better understand industry wastewater management practices, and to gather information to inform its proposed rulemaking (see DCN SGE00967).

    EPA participated in conference calls with the environmental stakeholders, Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) and Clean Water Action. The purpose of these meetings was to explain EPA's thinking about the standard under development and learn about the perspectives of these stakeholders regarding wastewater management in the UOG extraction industry.

    EPA participated in a two conference calls with the Center for Sustainable Shale Development (CSSD), a collaborative group made up of environmental organizations, philanthropic foundations, and energy companies from the Appalachian Basin. The purpose of these calls was to learn about the performance standards under development by the CSSD for sustainable shale gas development, based on an “independent, third-party evaluation process.”

    2. State Stakeholders

    In an effort to improve future implementation of any UOG regulation, EPA initiated an EPA-State implementation pilot project coordinated by the Environmental Council of States (ECOS) and the Association of Clean Water Administrators (ACWA) to draw on experience of state agency experts. Through this pilot project, EPA has been able to more thoroughly consider the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches in order to select one that produces environmental results while more fully considering implementation burden. This pilot effort with the states has also been an opportunity to hear ideas on how technology innovation can be fostered during both development and implementation of the regulation.

    In addition to the state implementation pilot, EPA also reached out to EPA regional, as well as state, pretreatment coordinators. One way EPA did this was by participating in calls, where EPA staff learned about past or present discharges to POTWs from UOG operations. See DCN SGE00742; DCN SGE00743.

    C. Secondary Data Sources

    EPA conducted an extensive search and review of published information about UOG development, wastewater generation and management practices, and wastewater treatment, disposal, and reuse. Because of the rapid developments in the UOG industry, in addition to reviewing published information, EPA participated in more than 10 industry conferences and webinars between March 2012 and June 2014. Presenters at these conferences provided information about current industry wastewater management practices. EPA also obtained information from EPA Regions and states. EPA Region 3 provided information about the development of the Marcellus shale gas industry and disposal of shale gas wastewater, including discharges to POTWs.

    D. Drilling Info Desktop® Data Set

    EPA used a propriety database of all oil and gas wells in the U.S., called DI Desktop®, obtained from DrillingInfo. This comprehensive database includes information such as well API number, operator name, basin (e.g., Western Gulf), formation (e.g., Eagle Ford), well depth, drilling type (horizontal, directional, vertical), and completion date. It also includes annual oil, gas, and water production for each well. EPA primarily used this database to quantify and identify locations of existing UOG wells, quantify wastewater generation rates, and supplement geological information (e.g., basin, formation) in other data sources.

    E. EPA Hydraulic Fracturing Study

    At the request of Congress, EPA's Office of Research and Development is conducting a study to better understand any potential impacts of hydraulic fracturing on drinking water resources. The scope of the research includes the full lifecycle of water in hydraulic fracturing, including wastewater management and disposal. In support of its study, EPA conducted a series of technical workshops, including, among others, a workshop on Wastewater Treatment and Related Modeling. In support of the proposed rule, EPA reviewed information collected in support of the Congressionally-mandated study and attended meetings, workshops, and roundtable discussions pertaining to water and wastewater management and treatment in the UOG extraction industry. See DCN SGE00063, DCN SGE00585, DCN SGE00604, DCN SGE00614, DCN SGE00616, DCN SGE00691, and DCN SGE00721.

    X. Description of the Oil and Gas Industry

    Oil and Gas Extraction is the exploration and production of crude oil and natural gas from wells. Refer to Section XII for additional background on unconventional gas resources, extraction processes, and wastewater generation. As explained previously, the scope of this proposed rulemaking is limited to pretreatment standards for wastewater generated from unconventional, rather than conventional, oil and gas extraction facilities. The description here provides a broader description of the oil and gas industry in order to provide the context in which the UOG industry lies.

    A. Economic Profile

    The major products of the Oil and Gas Extraction Industry are petroleum, natural gas, and natural gas liquids.3 Domestic consumption of crude oil and petroleum products is met by a combination of domestic production and imports. Like oil consumption, natural gas consumption is met both by domestic production and imports of natural gas, although imports contribute a much lower share of total domestic consumption for natural gas than for oil. Domestic consumption of natural gas rose throughout the 1980s and 1990s due to low prices relative to prices for oil products. This led to investments in infrastructure for natural gas, especially electric generation facilities (DCN SGE00809). According to 2012 Energy Information Administration (EIA) data, 8 percent of the gross domestic supply of natural gas (from domestic production and imports) was consumed in the natural gas production and delivery process, as lease and plant fuel (5 percent of total) and fuel for pipeline and distribution services (3 percent of total) (DCN SGE00906). The remaining 92 percent of gross supply is available to natural gas consumers, and was delivered to the following sectors: Electrical power (36 percent of total), industrial (28 percent of total), residential (16 percent of total), commercial (11 percent of total), and vehicle fuel (0.1 percent of total) (DCN SGE00906).

    3 Natural gas can include “natural gas liquids” (NGLs), components that are liquid at ambient temperature and pressure. NGLs are hydrocarbons—in the same family of molecules as natural gas and crude oil, composed exclusively of carbon and hydrogen. Ethane, propane, butane, isobutane, and pentane are all NGLs.

    Natural gas can be produced both from conventional natural gas deposits and unconventional deposits. Natural gas, and especially unconventional natural gas, has become increasingly significant to the U.S. energy economy. The rising importance of natural gas results, in part, from its lower air pollution characteristics compared to other fossil fuels; its substantial, and increasing, domestic supply; and the presence of a well-developed processing and transmission/distribution infrastructure in the U.S. (DCN SGE00010). Increased natural gas production from shale formations also has the potential to reduce U.S. dependence on energy-related imports.

    Between 2000 and 2012, total marketed production of natural gas in the U.S. as a whole grew by another 25 percent, with an average annual growth rate of 0.8 percent (DCN SGE00908). The sharp rise in production of shale gas contributed to a lower price of natural gas, thereby increasing the gap between prices of gas and oil, which made oil a relatively more attractive option for producers. Beginning in 2005, the disparity between oil and natural gas prices started to grow as oil prices continued to rise while natural gas prices declined. Many firms that produce both gas and oil began to focus on acquisition of, and production from, liquids-rich formations over natural gas production (DCN SGE00817, DCN SGE00832).

    Overall, domestic crude oil production steadily declined between 2000 and 2008, while steadily increasing after that. This shift towards liquids production is evident in the sharp rise in production from tight oil resources, including shale, beginning in 2008. From 2007 to 2013, the EIA estimated that tight oil production increased 10-fold, from 0.34 to 3.48 million barrels per day (DCN SGE00902). Future domestic demand for liquid fuels will depend on the future level of activities dependent on liquid fuels, such as transportation. Demand will also be affected by the fuel efficiency of the consumption technology. The transportation sector will continue to account for the largest share of total consumption despite its share of total consumption falling due to improvements in vehicle efficiency. The industrial sector is the only end-use sector likely to see an increase in consumption of petroleum and liquids (DCN SGE00913).

    While oil and natural gas are often considered together, the way in which prices are set for each greatly differs. While the price of oil is set at the global level, natural gas prices for the U.S. tend to be set regionally. In recent years, the ratio of oil prices to natural gas prices has reached historically high levels (DCN SGE00547). While these two products have some commonalities in their uses, oil and gas are not perfect substitutes as they require different transportation and processing infrastructure, and have a number of differentiated uses.

    EPA gathered information on the industry via the NAICS, which is a standard created by the U.S. Census for use in classifying business establishments within the U.S. economy. The industry category that would be affected by this proposed rule is Oil and Gas Extraction Industry (NAICS 21111). This industry has two subcategories: (1) Crude Petroleum and Natural Gas Extraction (NAICS 211111), which is made up of facilities that have wells with petroleum or natural gas or produce crude petroleum from surface shale or tar sands, and Natural Gas Liquid Extraction (NAICS 211112), which recover liquid hydrocarbons from oil and gas field gases and sulfur from natural gas.

    B. Industry Structure and Economic Performance

    According to data from the Statistics of U.S. Businesses (SUSB), in 2011 there were 6,528 firms under the overall oil and gas extraction sector. This reflects a total 2 percent growth from 2000 to 2011 and an average annual growth rate of 0.2 percent. The Crude Petroleum and Natural Gas Extraction segment contributed 6,523 (or 99%) firms to the total Oil and Gas Extraction sector, and the Natural Gas Liquid Extraction segment contributed 136 (less than 1%) firms to the overall sector. Although the Natural Gas Liquid Extraction segment is much smaller in numbers compared to the Crude Petroleum and Natural Gas Extraction segment, the total percent change in number of firms from 2000 to 2011 is much higher for natural gas liquids extraction at 62% as compared to 2% for crude petroleum and natural gas extraction. If the ratio of oil-to-natural gas prices remains high, there could be a shift towards drilling in liquids-rich shale formations, making this sector increasingly important to oil and gas extraction firms (DCN SGE00832; DCN SGE00807; DCN SGE00817; DCN SGE00921).

    In 2011, 99% of the Oil and Gas Extraction Industry was estimated to be small businesses when using the Small Business Administration definition of a small business as having 500 or fewer employees. Average revenues for firms for the overall oil and gas extraction sector in 2007 were estimated at $54 million. This is an average revenue of $46 million per firm in the crude petroleum and natural gas extraction segment, and average revenue of $414 million per firm in the natural gas liquid extraction segment. The oil and gas extraction sector overall has an average of 18 employees per firm. Breaking it out per segment, the natural gas liquid extraction segment has an average of 74 employees per firm, whereas the crude petroleum and natural gas extraction segment shows an average of 17 employees per firm. See the Industry Profile (DCN SGE00932) for more information.

    The oil market is a globally integrated market with multiple supply sources that are connected to multiple markets. Because of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries' (OPEC's) high accounting of global oil reserves, OPEC is able to place producer quotas on members in an effort to manage world oil prices. Other oil producers have relatively smaller reserves and have no influence, individually, on price (DCN SGE00854). On the other hand, global oil prices are also greatly influenced by global demand for oil, with the largest sources of demand being the U.S. and China (DCN SGE00854). While the U.S. is also one of the largest crude oil producers, it remains a major importer (demander) of oil; as a result the level of U.S. imports can significantly influence oil prices. The recent upsurge in U.S. oil production, largely from tight and shale oil resources, with a consequent decline in U.S. imports, has exerted downward pressure on international oil prices.

    In North America, specifically within the U.S., there is a relatively mature, integrated natural gas market with a robust spot market for the natural gas commodity. Essentially, the spot market is the daily market, where natural gas is bought and sold for immediate delivery. For understanding the price of natural gas on a specific day, the spot market price is most informative. In U.S. natural gas markets, natural gas spot prices are determined by overall supply and demand (DCN SGE00547).

    Large volume consumers of natural gas, mainly industrial consumers and electricity generators, generally have the ability to switch between oil and natural gas. When the price of gas is low relative to oil, these consumers could switch to gas, increasing demand for natural gas and increasing gas prices. Alternatively, when gas prices are high, demand could shift in the opposite direction causing a relative decrease in natural gas prices (DCN SGE00921).

    C. Financial Performance

    EPA reviewed financial performance of UOG extraction firms and other oil and gas firms. EPA found no deterioration in financial performance and conditions for UOG firms over the previous decade, and this suggests that UOG firms are well-positioned for continued investment in UOG exploration and development. The strong growth in revenue and total capital outlays by the UOG firms during the latter part of the last decade—which coincides with the growth in UOG exploration and production activity—underscores the economic opportunity provided by the emerging UOG resource and the industry's commitment to investing and producing UOG for the foreseeable future. See the Industry Profile (DCN SGE00932) for more information.

    XI. Scope

    Through the proposed rule, EPA is not reopening the regulatory requirements applicable to direct dischargers. Rather, EPA would amend subpart C only to add requirements for indirect dischargers where there currently are none: Specifically, pretreatment standards for facilities engaged in oil and gas extraction from UOG sources that send their discharges directly to POTWs. For purposes of this proposed rulemaking, EPA proposes to define “unconventional oil and gas (UOG)” as “crude oil and natural gas 4 produced by a well drilled into a low porosity, low permeability formation (including, but not limited to, shale gas, shale oil, tight gas, tight oil).” As a point of clarification, although coalbed methane would fit this definition, the proposed pretreatment standards would not apply to pollutant discharges to POTWs associated with coalbed methane extraction. EPA notes that the requirements in the existing effluent guidelines for direct dischargers also do not apply to coalbed methane extraction, as this industry did not exist at the time that the effluent guidelines were developed and was not considered by the Agency in establishing the effluent guidelines (DCN SGE00761). To reflect the fact that neither the proposed pretreatment standards nor the existing effluent guideline requirements apply to coalbed methane extraction, EPA is expressly reserving a separate unregulated subcategory for coalbed methane in the proposed rule. For information on coalbed methane, see http://water.epa.gov/scitech/wastetech/guide/oilandgas/cbm.cfm. The remainder of the information presented in this document is specific to the UOG resources subject to the proposed rule.

    4 Natural gas can include “natural gas liquids,” components that are liquid at ambient temperature and pressure.

    XII. Unconventional Oil and Gas Extraction: Resources, Process, and Wastewater A. Unconventional Oil and Gas Extraction Resources

    For purposes of the proposed rule, UOG consists of crude oil and natural gas 5 produced by wells drilled into formations with low porosity and low permeability. UOG resources include shale oil and gas, resources that were formed, and remain, in low permeability shale. UOG resources also include tight oil and gas, resources that were formed in a source rock and migrated into a reservoir rock such as sandstone, siltstones, or carbonates. The tight oil/gas reservoir rocks have permeability and porosity lower than reservoirs of conventional oil and gas resources but with permeability generally greater than shale. As described above, while coalbed methane is sometimes referred to as an unconventional resource, the proposed rule does not apply to this industry.

    5 Natural gas can include “natural gas liquids,” components that are liquid at ambient temperature and pressure.

    B. Unconventional Oil and Gas Extraction Process 1. Well Drilling

    Prior to the well development processes described in the following subsections, operators conduct exploration and obtain surface use agreements, mineral leases, and permits. These steps can take a few months to several years to complete. When completed, operators construct the well pad and begin the well development process, as described in the following subsections.

    Drilling occurs in two phases: exploration and development. Exploration activities are those operations involving the drilling of wells to locate hydrocarbon bearing formations and to determine the size and production potential of hydrocarbon reserves. Development activities involve the drilling of production wells once a hydrocarbon reserve has been discovered and delineated.

    Drilling for oil and gas is generally performed by rotary drilling methods, which involve the use of a circularly rotating drill bit that grinds through the earth's crust as it descends. Drilling fluids (muds) are injected down through the drill bit via a pipe that is connected to the bit, and serve to cool and lubricate the bit during drilling. Drilling fluids can be water or synthetic based. Synthetic-based drilling fluids are also referred to as non-aqueous drilling fluids. Air is also used in place of water or synthetic based drilling fluids for the vertical phase of wells. The rock chips that are generated as the bit drills through the earth are termed drill cuttings. The drilling fluid also serves to transport the drill cuttings back up to the surface through the space between the drill pipe and the well wall (this space is termed the annulus), in addition to controlling downhole pressure. As drilling progresses, pipes called “casing” are inserted into the well to line the well wall. Drilling continues until the hydrocarbon bearing formations are encountered.

    In UOG resources, the crude oil and natural gas often occur continuously within a formation. As a result, UOG drilling often employs “horizontal drilling.” Horizontal drilling involves a sequence of drilling steps: (1) Vertical (described above) and (2) horizontal. In horizontal drilling, operators drill vertically down to a desired depth, about 500 feet above the target formation (called the “kickoff point”), and then gradually turn the drill approximately 90 degrees to continue drilling laterally continuously through the target formation. UOG wells are also drilled vertically or directionally,6 depending on the characteristics of the formation. Directional drilling is a technique used to drill a wellbore at an angle off of the vertical to reach an end location not directly below the well pad; horizontal drilling is considered a type of directional drilling. In UOG well drilling, well depths range from approximately 1,000 to 13,500 feet deep (but the majority of wells are drilled between 6,000 and 12,000 feet), wells often have a long horizontal lateral which can vary in length between 1,000 and 5,000 feet, and it takes approximately 5 to 60 days to complete well drilling. See TDD, Chapter B.3.

    6 Shale oil and gas wells, are primarily drilled directionally (and specifically horizontally), while tight oil and gas wells are drilled vertically and directionally.

    2. Well Completion

    Once the target formation has been reached, and a determination has been made as to whether or not the formation has commercial potential, the well is made ready for production by a process termed “well completion.” Well completion involves cleaning the well to remove drilling fluids and debris, perforating the casing that lines the producing formation 7 , inserting production tubing to transport the hydrocarbon fluids to the surface, installing the surface wellhead, stimulating the well, setting plugs in each stage, and eventually drilling the plugs out of the well and allowing fluids to return to the surface. During perforation, operators lower a perforation gun into the stage using a line wire. The perforation gun releases an explosive charge to create holes that penetrate approximately one foot into the formation rock in a radial fashion. These perforations create a starting point for the hydraulic fractures.

    7 In some instances, open-hole completions may be used, where the well is drilled into the top of the target formation and casing is set from the top of the formation to the surface. Open-hole well completions leave the bottom of the wellbore uncased.

    Since UOG resources are extracted from formations with low porosity and low permeability in which the natural reservoir and fluid characteristics do not permit the oil and/or natural gas to readily flow to the wellbore, hydraulic fracturing is often used to complete the well and extract UOG resources.8 Although there are some vertical and directional UOG wells that are hydraulically fractured, existing literature indicates that the majority of UOG wells are horizontally drilled and hydraulically fractured. Therefore, the remainder of this discussion focuses on the hydraulic fracturing of horizontally drilled UOG wells; however, all drill types (including vertical and directional) would be covered by this proposed rule.

    8 Hydraulic fracturing techniques are also often used to improve recovery from conventional oil and gas wells. However, the scope of this section is focused on UOG extraction, therefore, the application of this process to conventional wells is not further discussed here.

    Hydraulic fracturing involves the injection of fracturing fluids (e.g., mixtures of water, sand, and other additives) at high pressures into the well to create small fractures in the rock formation. The primary component of fracturing fluid is the base fluid into which proppant (e.g., sand) and chemicals are added. Currently, the most common base fluid is water; however, other fluids such as liquid nitrogen and propane (LPG) are also used. Historically, base fluid consisted exclusively of freshwater, but as more wastewater is increasingly reused/recycled, base fluid can contain mixtures of fresh water blended with reused/recycled UOG extraction wastewater. Chemical additives, used to adjust the fracturing fluid properties, vary according to the formation, target resource (e.g., shale oil), chemical composition of base fluid (e.g., volume of reused/recycled wastewater in base fluid), and operator preference (DCN SGE00721; DCN SGE00070; DCN SGE00780; DCN SGE00781). Additives commonly include, among other things, acids (e.g., hydrochloric acid), biocides (e.g., glutaraldehyde), friction reducers (e.g., ethylene glycol, petroleum distillate), and gelling agents (e.g., guar gum, hydroxyethyl cellulose) (DCN SGE00721; DCN SGE00070; DCN SGE00780; DCN SGE00781). See TDD, Chapter C.1.

    The amount of fracturing fluid required per well typically depends on the well trajectory (e.g., vertical, horizontal), well length, and target resource (e.g., shale oil). UOG wells require between 50,000 to over ten million gallons of fracturing fluid per well (DCN SGE00532; DCN SGE00556; DCN SGE00637.A3). Operators typically fracture a horizontal well in eight to 23 stages using between 250,000 and 420,000 gallons (6,000 and 10,000 barrels) of fracturing fluid per stage (DCN SGE00280). Literature reports that tight oil and gas wells typically require less fracturing fluid than shale oil and gas wells (DCN SGE00533).

    Because laterals in horizontally drilled UOG wells are between 1,000 and 5,000 feet long, operators typically hydraulically fracture horizontal wells in stages to maintain the high pressures necessary to stimulate the well over the entire length. Stages are completed starting with the stage at the end of the wellbore and working back towards the wellhead.9 Operators use anywhere between eight and 23 stages (DCN SGE00280). A fracturing crew can fracture two to three stages per day when operating 12 hours per day or four to five stages per day when operating 24 hours per day.10 Consequently, a typical well can take between two and seven days to complete (DCN SGE00239; DCN SGE00090).

    9 The first stage is fractured with what is known as the pad fracture. The pad is the injection of high pressure water and chemical additives (no proppant) to create the initial fractures into the formation. After the pad is pumped down hole, proppant is introduced to the fracturing fluid for the additional stages.

    10 The hours per day depends on the operator, local ordinances, and weather.

    Once the stage is hydraulically fractured, a stage plug is inserted down the wellbore separating it from additional stages until all stages are completed. After all of the stages have been completed, the plugs are drilled out of the wellbore allowing the fracturing fluids and other fluids to return to the surface. At the wellhead, a combination of liquid (produced water), sand, oil, and/or gas are routed through phase separators that separate products from wastes.

    A portion of produced water can return to the wellhead at this time; this waste stream is often referred to as “flowback” and consists of the portion of fracturing fluid injected into the wellbore that returns to the surface during initial well depressurization often combined with formation water.11 Higher volumes of water are generated in the beginning of the flowback process. Over time, flowback rates decrease as the well goes into the production phase. Operators typically store flowback in 500 barrel fracturing tanks onsite before treatment or transport offsite.12 In addition to flowback, small quantities of oil and/or gas can be produced during the initial flowback process. The small quantities of produced gas could be flared or captured if the operator is using “green completions”, which involves capturing the gas rather than flaring.13

    11 Formation water is naturally occurring water contained in the reservoir rock pores.

    12 Fracturing tanks cannot be transported when they contain wastewater. Wastewater is typically transported via trucks with approximately 100 to 120 barrel capacities or via pipe (DCN SGE00635).

    13 On April 17, 2012, the U.S. EPA issued regulations under the Clean Air Act, requiring the natural gas industry to reduce air pollution by using green completions, or reduced emission completions. EPA identified a transition period until January 1, 2015 to allow operators to locate and install green completion equipment (40 CFR part 60 and 63).

    The flowback period typically lasts from a few days to a few weeks before the production phase commences (DCN SGE00010; DCN SGE00011; DCN SGE00622; DCN SGE00592; DCN SGE00286). At some wells, the majority of fracturing fluid can be recovered within a few hours (DCN SGE00010; DCN SGE00011; DCN SGE00622; DCN SGE00592; DCN SGE00286). See TDD, Chapter B.3.

    3. Production

    After the initial flowback period, the well begins producing oil and/or gas; this next phase is referred to as the production phase. During the production phase, UOG wells produce oil and/or gas and generate long-term produced water. Long-term produced water, generated during the well production phase after the initial flowback process, consists primarily of formation water and continues to be produced throughout the lifetime of the well, though typically at much lower rates than flowback (DCN SGE00592). This long-term produced water is typically stored onsite in tanks or pits (DCN SGE00280; DCN SGE00275; DCN SGE00636) and is periodically trucked, or sometimes piped, offsite for treatment, reuse, or disposal. See TDD, Chapter B.3.

    C. UOG Extraction Wastewater

    UOG extraction wastewater, as EPA proposes to define it (see Section VII.B.) includes the following sources of wastewater pollutants: 14

    14 Stormwater is not considered a source of UOG extraction wastewater. In general, no permit is required for discharges of stormwater from any field activities or operations associated with oil and gas production, except as specified in 40 CFR 122.26(c)(1)(iii) for discharges of a reportable quantity or that contribute to a violation of a water quality standard.

    • Produced water—the water (brine) brought up from the hydrocarbon-bearing strata during the extraction of oil and gas. This can include formation water, injection water, and any chemicals added downhole or during the oil/water separation process. Based on the stage of completion and production the well is in, produced water can be further broken down into the following components:

    ○ Flowback—After the hydraulic fracturing procedure is completed and pressure is released, the direction of fluid flow reverses, and the fluid flows up through the wellbore to the surface. The water that returns to the surface is commonly referred to as “flowback.”

    ○ Long-term produced water—This is the wastewater generated by UOG wells during the production phase of the well after the flowback process. Long-term produced water continues to be produced throughout the lifetime of the well.

    • Drilling wastewater, including pollutants from:

    ○ Drill cuttings—The particles generated by drilling into subsurface geologic formations and carried out from the wellbore with the drilling fluid.

    ○ Drilling muds—The circulating fluid (mud) used in the rotary drilling of wells to clean and condition the hole and to counterbalance formation pressure.

    • Produced sand—The slurried particles used in hydraulic fracturing, the accumulated formation sands and scales particles generated during production. Produced sand also includes desander discharge from the produced water waste stream, and blowdown of the water phase from the produced water treating system.

    EPA identified drilling wastewater and produced water as the major sources of wastewater pollutants associated with UOG extraction, therefore, these wastewaters are described further below.

    1. Drilling Wastewater

    As discussed in Section XII.B.1., operators inject drilling fluids down the well bore during drilling to cool the drill bit and to remove fragments of rock (drill cuttings) from the wellbore (DCN SGE00090; DCN SGE00274). Drilling fluid can be water or synthetic based. Air has recently been used in place of drilling fluids in the vertical phase of wells. Operators can use a combination of drilling fluids and air during the drilling process of a single well. The drilling fluid used depends on the properties of the formation, the depth, and associated regulations, safety, and cost considerations (DCN SGE00090; DCN SGE00635; TDD Chapter B.3).

    When returned to the surface, ground rock removed from the wellbore (drill cuttings) is entrained in the drilling fluid. Operators separate the solids from the drilling fluid on the surface, striving to remove as much solids (drill cuttings) from the drilling fluid as possible. The separation process generates two streams: a solid waste stream referred to as drill cuttings and a liquid waste stream referred to as drilling wastewater. Operators typically transfer their drill cuttings to a landfill (DCN SGE00090; DCN SGE00635). Drilling wastewater is often reused/recycled until well drilling is complete (though in some cases it is processed for discharge and/or disposal).

    At the end of drilling, operators use a variety of practices to manage drilling wastewater, primarily reuse/recycle in drilling subsequent wells. The following list presents drilling wastewater management options used by UOG operators (DCN SGE00740):

    • Reuse/recycle wastewater in subsequent drilling and/or fracturing jobs 15

    15 Synthetic fluids, which are more expensive than water-based drilling fluid, are almost always reused/recycled in drilling additional wells.

    • Disposal via landfill 16

    16 Burial and landfill disposal options are generally limited to “semisolid” waste. Solidification processes may occur prior to transferring the waste to the landfill or they may occur at the landfill. (DCN SGE00139).

    • Disposal via underground injection wells

    • Land application

    • Transfer wastewater to a centralized waste treatment (CWT) facility

    • On-site burial 16

    Nearly all of the volume of drilling fluid circulated during drilling is recovered as drilling wastewater and requires management. Typical drilling wastewater volumes for UOG drilling vary from 100,000 to 300,000 gallons per well depending primarily on vertical depth, horizontal length, and the well bore diameter (DCN SGE00740).

    2. Produced Water a. Flowback

    As explained above, the portion of produced water that returns to the wellhead after the plugs are drilled out of the wellbore is often referred to as “flowback” and the largest daily volume of produced water generated occurs during the flowback period. Over time, flowback rates decrease as the well begins to produce oil and gas. Initially, flowback has characteristics that can resemble the fracturing fluid. During the flowback period, the generated wastewater increasingly resembles characteristics of the underlying formation.

    The volume of flowback produced by a well varies, and it is often looked at in relation to the volume of the fracturing fluid used to fracture the well (as explained in Section XII.B.2. above, fracturing fluid volumes used depend on many factors, including the total number of stages drilled). Flowback recovery percentages also vary due to factors such as resource type (e.g., shale oil) and well trajectory and have been documented anywhere between 3 and 75 percent of the volume of the fracturing fluid injected, with median flowback recovery between 4 and 29 percent (DCN SGE00724). These percent recoveries can result in total flowback volumes ranging from less than 210,000 gallons per well to more than 2,100,000 gallons per well (5,000 to 50,000 barrels per well) (DCN SGE00724). See TDD, Chapter C. 2.

    b. Long-term Produced Water

    After flowback generation, long-term produced water is generated during the well production phase. Long-term produced water has characteristics that primarily reflect the formation. The long-term produced water flow rate from a UOG well gradually decreases over time. In addition, the amount of produced water generated per well varies by formation. Median long-term produced water flow rates vary by resource type (e.g., shale oil) and well trajectory and can be between 200 and 800 gallons per day (4.8 to 19 barrels per day), depending on well trajectory, formation type and well age (DCN SGE00635; DCN SGE00724). See TDD, Chapter C.2.

    D. UOG Extraction Wastewater Characteristics

    EPA reviewed published characterization data for UOG extraction wastewater. Produced water data included measurements of TDS, anions/cations, metals, hardness, radioactive constituents, and organics. The characteristics of UOG produced water vary primarily depending on the characteristics of the UOG formation (DCN SGE00090). Drilling wastewater characterization data included suspended solids, salts, metals, and organics. Because drilling wastewater is typically recycled/re-used for drilling another well, detailed pollutant specific information is less readily available for drilling wastewater than for produced water. As such, the remainder of this section is specific to produced water.17

    17 As explained above, produced water includes both flowback and long-term produced water.

    1. TDS and TDS-Contributing Ions

    TDS provides a measure of the dissolved matter, including salts (e.g., sodium, chloride, nitrate), organic matter, and minerals (DCN SGE00046). TDS is not a specific chemical, but is defined as the portion of solids that pass through a filter with a nominal pore size of 2.0 micron (µm) or less (EPA Method 160.1). Table XII-1. shows ranges and median TDS concentrations associated with various shale and tight oil and gas formations.

    Table XII-1—Concentrations of TDS in Produced Waters in Various UOG Formations Shale/tight oil and gas formation TDS concentration range
  • (mg/L)
  • TDS median
  • concentration
  • (mg/L)
  • Number of data points
    Bakken 98,000-220,000 150,000 13 Barnett 25,000-150,000 50,000 40 Bradford-Venango-Elk (Tight) 32,000-400,000 180,000 5 Cleveland (Tight) 84,000-220,000 120,000 11 Cotton Valley/Bossier (Tight) 110,000-230,000 170,000 3 Dakota (Tight) 2,900-7,700 6,000 3 Devonian 320-250,000 130,000 11 Eagle Ford 3,700-89,000 21,000 1,648 Fayetteville 13,000-57,000 25,000 6 Haynesville/Bossier 110,000-120,000 120,000 2 Marcellus 680-350,000 92,000 383 Mississippi Lime (Tight) 150,000 1 New Albany 88,000 1 Niobrara 39,000-140,000 100,000 8 Pearsall 300,000-380,000 370,000 3 Spraberry (Tight) 58,000-160,000 130,000 26 Utica 6,500-44,000 16,000 8 Woodford-Cana-Caney 14,000-110,000 36,000 8 Source: See TDD, Chapter C.3.

    Salts are the majority of TDS in UOG produced water, and sodium chloride constitutes approximately 50 percent of the TDS in UOG produced water (DCN SGE00046). In addition to sodium and chloride, UOG produced water typically contains divalent cations such as calcium, strontium, magnesium, and, in some formations, barium and radium. Other ions such as potassium, bromide, fluoride, nitrate, nitrite, phosphate, and sulfate can also contribute to TDS in UOG produced water. Metals, other than those contributing to TDS (e.g., calcium, magnesium, strontium), are typically not found in high concentrations in UOG produced water. Table XII-2. presents ranges and median concentrations of TDS and TDS-contributing ions in UOG produced water. Based on available data, concentrations of TDS and TDS-contributing ions, including divalent cations, typically increase from flowback to long-term produced water. See TDD, Chapter C.3.

    Table XII-2—Concentrations of TDS and TDS-Contributing Ions in UOG Produced Waters Constituent Concentration range
  • (mg/L)
  • Median
  • concentration
  • (mg/L)
  • Number of data points
    TDS 20-400,000 110,000 2,223 Chloride 64-230,000 48,000 2,063 Sodium 64-98,000 25,000 1,913 Calcium 13-34,000 3,400 2,068 Strontium 0-8,000 580 207 Magnesium 3-15,000 570 2,030 Bromide 0.2-4,300 540 119 Potassium 0-5,800 290 344 Barium 0-16,000 100 289 Sulfate 0-3,400 71 1,585 Phosphate 12-88 12 3 Nitrate 5-10 5 3 Nitrite 5 2 Fluoride 0.045-390 2.5 99 Source: See TDD, Chapter C.3.
    2. Organic Constituents

    Organic constituents in UOG produced water can originate from both the fracturing fluid that is injected down the wellbore and from the UOG formation itself. Organic constituents and hydrocarbons in UOG produced water appear to be less frequently sampled in comparison to the well-documented TDS concentrations. EPA has reviewed available data on organic pollutants in produced water and found a range of pollutant concentrations: phenol (0.7 to 460 parts per billion (ppb)), pyridine (1.1 to 2,600 ppb), benzene (0.99 to 800,000 ppb), ethyl benzene (0.63 to 650 ppb), toluene (0.91 to 1,700,000 ppb), and total xylenes (3 to 440,000 ppb) (DCN SGE00724). See TDD, Chapter C.3.

    3. Radioactive Constituents

    Oil and gas formations contain varying levels of radioactivity resulting from uranium decay which can be transferred to UOG produced water. Radioactive decay products typically include uranium 238, radium 226, and radium 228. EPA identified available data on some radioactive elements in UOG produced water, including radium 226, radium 228, gross alpha, and gross beta, and, therefore, focused the radioactive constituent discussion and data presentation on data for these parameters. Radium 226, which has a half-life over 1,000 years, has been found in UOG produced water at concentrations up to 16,900 picocuries per liter (pCi/L) (DCN SGE00241; DCN SGE00724). As a point of comparison, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) published a report in 2014 that included radium isotope concentrations in rivers and lakes. The average of measured concentrations of radium 226 found in U.S. rivers and lakes was 0.56 pCi/L (21 millibecquerel per liter (mBq/L)) and the measured values ranged from 0.01 to 1.7 pCi/L (0.37 to 63 mBq/L) (DCN SGE00769). Data for radium 228 were limited.

    Data characterizing produced water radioactivity concentrations were not available for all shale and tight oil and gas formations. However, the available data 18 from five different tight or shale oil and gas formations show that the concentrations of one or more radioactive constituents (radium 226, radium 228, gross alpha, gross beta) in UOG produced water was above naturally occurring concentrations in rivers and lakes throughout the world. The highest reported radium 228 value was in the Ganges River in India and was measured at 0.07 pCi/L (2.6 mBq/L). (See DCN SGE00769)

    18 A report was released by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, titled “Technologically Enhanced Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials (TENORM) Study Report” on January 15, 2015. These data have not yet been incorporated into EPA's analyses. The report presents additional data for the Marcellus Shale formation, which is one of the five formations for which EPA has identified additional data sources. See TDD Chapter C.3 and DCN SGE00933.

    E. Wastewater Management and Disposal Practices

    Historically, UOG operators primarily managed their wastewater using the following four methods: 19

    19 Occasionally, UOG operators in the western U.S. may use evaporation as a means of wastewater management.

    • Disposal via underground injection wells;

    • Reuse in subsequent fracturing jobs;

    • Transfer to a POTW; or

    • Transfer to a privately owned wastewater treatment facility (also called a CWT facility).20

    20 Operators may haul wastewater to CWT facilities that handle the wastewater by (1) treating for reuse; (2) direct discharging to surface water; or (3) indirect discharging to surface water through a POTW.

    (DCN SGE00613; DCN SGE00276); DCN SGE00528).

    The frequency with which UOG operators use each of the management options listed above varies by operator, formation, and sometimes within each region of the formation (DCN SGE00579; DCN SGE00276). Relative cost is also an important factor for an UOG operator when considering how to manage their wastewater. This proposed rule addresses only transfers to a POTW. Historically, the oil and gas industry has most commonly managed its wastewater by underground injection (DCN SGE00182), but the industry is increasingly turning to reuse, and in some areas transfer to CWT facilities, to manage increasing volumes of UOG extraction wastewater (see TDD, Chapter D).

    1. Injection into Disposal Wells

    Underground injection involves pumping wastes into a deep underground formation with a confining layer of impermeable rock. The receiving formation must also be porous enough to accept the wastewater. In previous decades, and in most oil and gas basins, drillers found underground injection of oil and gas extraction wastewater to be the most economical and reliable means of disposal; this is similarly the case today (DCN SGE00623). As of 2009, over 90 percent of oil and gas wastewater (conventional and unconventional) was disposed of via Class II injection wells (DCN SGE00623; DCN SGE00132).

    The availability of underground injection as a disposal method varies by state. Some states have a large number of Class II disposal wells (e.g., Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas) while others have very few (e.g., Pennsylvania, West Virginia). In many UOG formations, distances from the average producing well to the nearest disposal well are short and disposal capacity is abundant making it the least expensive disposal practice (DCN SGE00635).

    2. Reuse in Fracturing

    Reuse involves mixing flowback and/or long-term produced water from previously fractured wells with source water 21 to create the base fluid used to fracture a new well (DCN SGE00046). Reused UOG extraction wastewater is typically transported, by truck, from storage to the fracturing site just prior to the start of hydraulic fracturing. When hydraulic fracturing commences, the stored UOG wastewater is pumped from the fracturing tanks and blended with source water to form the base fluid. The blending occurs upstream of other steps such as sand and fracturing chemical addition or pressurization by the pump trucks (DCN SGE00625).

    21 Source waters may include freshwater, ground water, treated municipal wastewater, and other industrial wastewater.

    In considering whether to reuse wastewater, operators evaluate wastewater generation rates compared to water demand for new fracturing jobs, water quality and treatment requirements for use in fracturing, and the risks and costs of wastewater management and transportation for reuse compared to disposal, or transfer practices. Typically, for an operator to reuse wastewater, the cost per barrel for reuse must be less than the cost per barrel for disposal or transfer (DCN SGE00095). The cost for reuse depends on several factors that vary by formation and operator; and, therefore, the potential for reusing UOG extraction wastewater for fracturing varies by formation and operator.

    Since the late 2000s, UOG operators have increased wastewater reuse (DCN SGE00613). The Petroleum Equipment Suppliers Association (PESA) surveyed 205 UOG operators in 2012 about their wastewater management practices. Survey results included 143 operators active in major UOG formations. UOG operators reported reusing 23 percent of the total volume of wastewater generated to refracture another well. The survey results also showed that most operators anticipated reusing higher percentages of their wastewater in the two to three years following the survey (DCN SGE00707; DCN SGE00708; DCN SGE00575). EPA participated in several site visits and conference calls with operators in several UOG formations that have been able to reuse 100 percent of the volume of their wastewater under certain circumstances (DCN SGE00625; DCN SGE00635; DCN SGE00275; DCN SGE00636).

    3. Transfer to Centralized Waste Treatment Facilities

    Some operators manage UOG extraction wastewater by transporting it to CWT facilities for treatment. Following treatment, these facilities can return it to an operator for reuse to fracture another well (“zero discharge”) and/or discharge it, either to surface water or to a POTW. Operators can choose to use CWT facilities if they drill and complete relatively few wells, making discharging to CWT facilities more feasible than investing in other management options (DCN SGE00300), or if other wastewater management options are not available or cost effective in the region where they are operating (DCN SGE00139; DCN SGE00182). EPA identified 73 commercial CWT facilities that accept UOG extraction wastewater. See TDD, Chapter D.3. EPA found that the number of CWT facilities available to operators in the Marcellus and Utica Shale formations has increased with the number of wells drilled. A similar trend was observed in the Fayetteville Shale formation in Arkansas (DCN SGE00704).

    Operators can haul their wastewater to “zero discharge” CWT facilities that treat but do not discharge UOG extraction wastewater, either to surface water or to a POTW. Instead, they return the wastewater to UOG operators for reuse in subsequent hydraulic fracturing jobs. Commercial CWT facilities that fall into this category typically allow operators to unload a truck load of wastewater for treatment and take a load of treated wastewater on a cost per barrel basis (DCN SGE00245). Some of these facilities offer operators the option of unloading a truck load of wastewater without taking a load of treated wastewater for a surcharge, as long as other operators are in need of additional treated wastewater. The CWT facility can also provide this service if it can dispose of the wastewater without discharge (DCN SGE00299). For example, one facility in Wyoming treats UOG extraction wastewater for reuse by removing TDS and other pollutants through electrocoagulation followed by reverse osmosis (RO). The facility evaporates the concentrated brine from the RO unit in large evaporation ponds to dispose of wastewater not reused by operators (DCN SGE00374).

    Some operators can haul their wastewater to CWT facilities that discharge directly to surface waters. Discharges from these CWT facilities are controlled by NDPES permits that include pollutant discharge limitations based on the technology-based ELGs set out in 40 CFR part 437 (representing the floor), or more stringent WQBELs where the technology-based effluent limits are not sufficiently stringent to meet applicable state water quality standards. The ELGs established by EPA for CWTs do not include limitations for TDS; however, to meet applicable state water quality standards, direct discharging CWT facilities can use treatment processes (e.g., evaporation/condensation, reverse osmosis) that remove TDS.

    Finally, other operators can haul their wastewater to CWT facilities that discharge indirectly to a POTW. Discharges from the CWT facility to the POTW are controlled by an Industrial User Agreement (IUA) that must incorporate the pretreatment standards set out in 40 CFR part 437.

    4. Transfer to POTWs

    Historically, in locations such as in Pennsylvania where disposal wells and CWT facilities were limited, operators managed UOG extraction wastewater by transfer to POTWs (DCN SGE00011; DCN SGE00739; DCN SGE00598). This practice can be problematic because POTWs are not able to remove many of the constituents found in UOG extraction wastewater (DCN SGE00011; DCN SGE00600; DCN SGE00765). Because they are not typical of POTW influent wastewater, UOG extraction wastewater constituents can be discharged, largely untreated, from the POTW to the receiving stream; can disrupt the operation of the POTW (e.g., by inhibiting biological treatment); can accumulate in biosolids, limiting their use; and can facilitate the formation of harmful DBPs (which are a concern for downstream drinking water uses). These constituents can interfere with POTW operations and can increase salt loads in receiving streams to the detriment of downstream water use. (DCN SGE00286; DCN SGE00345; DCN SGE00579; DCN SGE00531; DCN SGE00633). See TDD, Chapter D.5. As discussed above, EPA has not been able to identify any existing UOG discharges at present to POTWs (DCN SGE00579; DCN SGE00286; DCN SGE00345). The lack of existing discharges to POTWs can be attributed to the availability of one or more cost effective alternative wastewater management options (injection for disposal, reuse/recycling, and transfer to a CWT), concerns about inability of POTWs to treat such waste appropriately, and concerns that such discharges can disrupt POTW treatment processes. In a few cases, they can also be associated with state-level drivers (see TDD Chapter A.2).

    XIII. Subcategorization

    In developing ELGs, EPA can divide an industry category into groupings called “subcategories” to provide a method for addressing variations among products, processes, and other factors, which result in distinctly different effluent characteristics that affect the determination of the “best available” technology. See Texas Oil & Gas Ass'n. v. U.S. EPA, 161 F.3d 923, 939-40 (5th Cir. 1998). Regulation of a category by subcategories provides that each subcategory has a uniform set of effluent limitations or pretreatment standards that take into account technological achievability, economic impacts, and non-water quality environmental impacts unique to that subcategory. In some cases, effluent limitations or pretreatment standards within a subcategory can be different based on consideration of these same factors, which are identified in CWA section 304(b)(2)(B). The CWA requires EPA, in developing effluent guidelines and pretreatment standards, to consider a number of different factors, which are also relevant for subcategorization. The CWA also authorizes EPA to take into account other factors that the Administrator deems appropriate. CWA section 304(b).

    Within the oil and gas extraction category, EPA has already established subcategories. As explained in Section VIII.C., the existing oil and gas extraction ELGs are divided into five subcategories. The scope of the proposed rule is specific to subpart C: onshore. The proposed rule is specific to pollutant discharges from UOG extraction as defined in Section XI. EPA considered whether further subcategorization of the UOG extraction industry was warranted. EPA evaluated a number of factors including available data regarding wastewater chemical constituents, generation volumes, and rates. Although some differences can be observed among these characteristics (between different types of unconventional resource and geologic formations, and sometimes between wells within the same source), EPA proposes that further subcategorization is not appropriate because EPA has not identified any onshore UOG operations that currently discharge to POTWs.

    XIV. Proposed Regulation A. Discussion of Options 1. PSES and PSNS Option Selection

    EPA proposes to establish PSES and PSNS that apply to wastewater discharges from onshore UOG extraction facilities. Generally, EPA designs PSES and PSNS to ensure that wastewaters from direct and indirect industrial dischargers are subject to similar levels of treatment prior to discharge to waters of the U.S. This means that, typically, the requirements for indirect dischargers are analogous to those for direct dischargers. As explained in Section VIII.C., the existing requirements for BPT for the Onshore Subcategory are zero discharge of wastewater pollutants into waters of the U.S. from any source associated with production, field exploration, drilling, well completion, or well treatment. As also explained in Section VIII.C., the existing BPT requirements do not apply to discharges to POTWs.

    Most POTWs are designed primarily to treat municipally generated wastewater. POTWs typically provide at least secondary level treatment and, thus, are designed to remove settleable solids, suspended solids and organic material using biological treatment. EPA is not aware of any POTWs that are designed to treat dissolved pollutants in UOG extraction wastewater such as TDS (e.g., chlorides, sulfates, metals) or radioactive elements. As a result, the mass of untreated pollutants would be discharged from the POTW to the receiving water, could disrupt the operation of the POTW (e.g., by inhibiting biological treatment) or could facilitate the formation of harmful DBPs.

    As explained in Section XII.E., EPA evaluated the practices currently used to manage UOG extraction wastewaters. Based on the information reviewed as part of this proposed rulemaking, EPA identified that current industry practice is not to discharge pollutants from onshore UOG extraction to POTWs. Rather, the vast majority of this wastewater is managed by disposal in underground injection wells and/or re-use in fracturing another well.22 A small, but in some geographic areas increasing, portion of the industry also transfers its wastewater to privately owned wastewater treatment facilities (also referred to as CWT facilities).

    22 While pollutant discharges from onshore oil and gas extraction produced water are allowed under subpart E in certain geographic locations for use in agriculture or wildlife propagation, EPA has not found that these types of permits are typically written for unconventional oil and gas extraction wastewater (as defined for the proposed rule).

    Because of this information, EPA identified one candidate PSES/PSNS option; that is, zero discharge of wastewater pollutants to POTWs. UOG extraction wastewater is discussed in Section XII.C.

    The technology basis for the proposed PSES is disposal in UIC wells and/or wastewater reuse/recycling to fracture another well. Because existing UOG extraction facilities currently employ alternative wastewater management practices, the technology basis for meeting a zero discharge requirement is widely available. While EPA estimates that there will be no incremental pollutant reductions associated with the proposed PSES, the technology basis is best performing in that it achieves zero discharges of pollutants in UOG extraction wastewater. Additionally, because this technology represents current industry practice nationwide, no facilities will incur incremental costs for compliance with the proposed PSES and, therefore, the proposed PSES is economically achievable. For the same reasons, the proposed PSES will result in no incremental non-water quality environmental impacts. Finally, because the proposal represents current industry practice, EPA proposes that PSES requiring zero discharge of wastewater pollutants be effective as of the effective date of this rule.

    As previously noted, under section 307(c) of the CWA, new sources of pollutants into POTWs must comply with standards which reflect the greatest degree of effluent reduction achievable through application of the best available demonstrated control technologies. Congress envisioned that new treatment systems could meet tighter controls than existing sources because of the opportunity to incorporate the most efficient processes and treatment systems into the facility design. EPA proposes PSNS that would control the same pollutants using the same technologies proposed for control by PSES. The technologies used to control pollutants at existing sources, disposal in UIC wells and/or wastewater reuse/recycling to fracture another well, are fully available to new sources. They achieve the greatest degree of effluent reduction available: zero discharge of pollutants in UOG extraction wastewater. Furthermore, EPA has not identified any technologies that are demonstrated to be available for new sources that are different from those identified for existing sources. Finally, EPA determined that the proposed PSNS present no barrier to entry into the market for new sources. While EPA cannot say with certainty exactly how new sources will manage their UOG extraction wastewater, information in the record indicates that new sources would manage their UOG extraction wastewater following current industry practice. EPA has found that overall impacts from the proposed standards on new sources would be minimal, as is the case for existing sources, since the costs faced by new sources generally will be the same as those faced by existing sources. EPA projects no (and, therefore, acceptable) incremental non-water quality environmental impacts. Therefore, EPA proposes to establish PSNS that are the same as the proposed PSES.

    2. Other Options Considered a. “No Rule”

    In addition to the PSES/PSNS option of zero discharge of wastewater pollutants, EPA also considered the option of no proposed PSES or PSNS, a “no rule” option. Based on the discussion above that no UOG facilities are currently transferring wastewater to POTWs, and given available alternative management options such as disposal in UIC wells and reuse/recycling, EPA considered the option of no proposed rule. A “no rule” option would impose no change to the existing pretreatment regulatory regime, or industry practice, and would, therefore, be a “no incremental cost and pollutant reduction” option.

    EPA, however, did not select this “no rule” option for several reasons. First, there is no national federal regulation that would prevent or require pretreatment of such discharges—and, as mentioned above, EPA is not aware of any POTWs that are designed to treat dissolved pollutants common in UOG extraction wastewater. This means that constituents of such wastewater could be discharged to receiving waters when other [available] options such as reuse and proper disposal in a Class II UIC well better protect water quality and aquatic communities and help further the zero discharge goal of the CWA. CWA section 101(a)(1). Second, as detailed in Chapter A.2 of the TDD, few states have regulations or policies that prevent discharges of pollutants in UOG extraction wastewater to POTWs or that mandate pre-treatment prior to discharge to a POTW. In the absence of such regulations or policies, resource-constrained control authorities and/or POTWs who receive requests to accept UOG extraction wastewater would be in the position of having to evaluate whether to accept transfers of wastewater on a case-by-case basis. Third, history demonstrates that absent controls preventing the transfer of or requiring pretreatment of such wastewater, POTWs can accept it, as occurred in Pennsylvania (see TDD Chapters A.2 and D.5), where POTWs were used to manage UOG extraction wastewater until the state took action, including promulgating new regulations requiring pretreatment. Among the drivers behind these actions taken by Pennsylvania was that some waters were impaired by TDS. (DCN SGE00187).

    To avoid future scenarios where POTWs receive UOG extraction wastewater, it is reasonable to codify the good practice already adopted by the industry that is technologically and economically viable. Moreover, it is beneficial to the states as a practical matter to establish federal regulations that mandate this existing practice, in order to avoid the burden for each state to potentially repeat the effort of promulgating state-level regulations. EPA has discussed this proposed rule with several states, who have indicated that a federal pretreatment standard would reduce their administrative burden (DCN SGE00762; DCN SGE00762; DCN SGE00743).

    EPA also considered the future burden that continued lack of pretreatment standards can impose on POTWs. The UOG extraction industry is predicted to continue to grow in the future, resulting in the installation, fracturing, and possible refracturing of hundreds of thousands of wells. Well operators will continue to generate UOG extraction wastewater and could request local POTWs to accept their wastewater for discharge. In the absence of federal pretreatment standards, POTWs can legally accept UOG extraction wastewater to the extent that such wastewater transfers are in compliance with state and local requirements. Evaluating each potential customer (industrial user), developing a determination for each new UOG extraction wastewater source on a case-by-case basis could be burdensome for POTWs. In addition, where a POTW determines it can accept this wastewater, complying with applicable reporting requirements could be a significant burden to some POTWs. EPA concluded that a national-level determination that UOG extraction wastewater contains pollutant concentrations that could pass through POTWs, and development of categorical pretreatment standards, will avoid burdening individual POTWs with evaluating each individual request. Thus, the national categorical pretreatment standards will reduce the process burden on pretreatment Control Authorities (e.g., POTWs). While EPA does not have the information to quantify the reductions in administrative burden that will likely result from the proposed rule, states generally support EPA's position that such reductions will be realized (DCN SGE00762; DCN SGE00762; DCN SGE00743).

    Moreover, as explained above, because some pollutants of concern in UOG extraction wastewater will not be physically, chemically, or biologically reduced by the treatment processes typically used at POTWs, these pollutants are expected to be discharged from the POTW into receiving waters. In addition, these pollutants can cause operational problems for the POTW's biological treatment processes and alter the POTW's ability to adequately remove BOD, TSS, and other pollutants for which it is regulated. For some UOG pollutants, such as radionuclides, the data indicate POTWs will remove some portion while discharging the remainder (DCN SGE00136). In these cases, some portion of the radionuclides will partition to the POTW biosolids, which can cause the POTW to incur increased costs to change its selected method of biosolids management (DCN SGE00615). See also TDD Chapter D.5.

    Finally, EPA did not select the “no rule” option because it concluded that national pretreatment standards provide clear direction and certainty to industry, POTWs, states, and the public that UOG extraction wastewaters are not treated by POTWs and should not be transferred to them. Categorical pretreatment standards support the CWA goal that the discharge of pollutants into the nation's navigable waters be eliminated. CWA section 101(a).

    b. Non-Zero Numeric Discharge Pretreatment Requirements

    EPA considered an option that would have included non-zero numerical discharge pre-treatment requirements prior to discharge to a POTW. Such an option could be similar to the one adopted in Pennsylvania in 2010 that requires pretreatment of oil and gas wastewaters before discharge to a POTW to meet a maximum TDS concentration of 500 mg/L as well as specific numerical concentrations for other pollutants. Some have suggested this would provide an “escape-valve” for the future in the event that UIC disposal well capacity is exhausted. Others have suggested this would allow the water to be available for re-use (other than in fracturing another well) if technologies become available to pre-treat it to remove dissolved pollutants in a cost effective manner.

    EPA does not propose an option with numerical discharge pretreatment requirements prior to discharge to a POTW for the following reasons. First, the existing requirements for direct discharges of UOG extraction wastewater in the Onshore Subcategory require no discharge of pollutants. As explained above, EPA generally establishes requirements for direct and indirect discharges so that the wastewater receives comparable treatment prior to discharge to waters of the U.S.

    Second, the option EPA proposes, zero discharge of pollutants in UOG extraction wastewater to POTWs, is widely available, economically achievable and has no incremental (and, therefore, acceptable) non-water quality environmental impacts. Because the proposed zero pollutant discharge requirement is current practice and, therefore, clearly both available and achievable, any option that includes non-zero discharge requirements for any pollutants would potentially increase pollutant discharges from current industry best practices. Such an option would not fulfill the CWA requirement to establish limitations based on “Best Available Technology Economically Achievable” (CWA section 301(b)(2)(A)), or the CWA goals of eliminating the discharge of pollutants into navigable waters (CWA section 101(a)(1)).

    Third, EPA does not have any data to demonstrate that UIC capacity nationwide will be expended and that this current management approach will not be available in the future (DCN SGE00613). In fact, industry has been managing oil and gas extraction wastewater through underground injection for decades. In recent years, industry has greatly expanded its knowledge about the ability to re-use UOG flowback and long-term produced water (the major contributors to UOG extraction wastewater by volume) in fracturing another well. Consequently, while the UOG industry continues to grow and new wells are being fractured, the need for UIC capacity for UOG extraction wastewater is decreasing, even in geographic locations with an abundance of UIC capacity (see TDD Chapter D.2).

    Fourth, EPA identified technologies that currently exist to treat dissolved pollutants in UOG extraction wastewater. Relative to underground injection and reuse/recycling to fracture another well (the basis for the preferred option EPA proposes), these technologies are costly, would result in more pollutant discharges, and are energy intensive. While EPA did not attempt to calculate a numerical standard for TDS, data collected for this proposed rulemaking demonstrate that the current technologies are capable of reducing TDS (and other dissolved pollutants) well below 500 mg/L. To the extent that these technologies or others are developed in the future to reduce pollutants in UOG extraction wastewater to enable them to be reused for purposes other than fracturing another well, these pre-treated wastewaters can be used directly for the other applications without going through a POTW.23

    23 As a point of clarification, except in certain geographic areas, these wastewaters would remain subject to the requirements in the Onshore Subcategory that require no discharge of pollutants to waters of the U.S. (40 CFR 435.30).

    c. Conventional Oil and Gas Wastewater

    As explained in Section VIII., while the existing oil and gas regulation applies to both conventional and UOG extraction (except coalbed methane), the proposed rule would add pretreatment standards only for facilities engaged in oil and gas extraction from UOG sources that send their discharges to POTWs. EPA proposes to reserve standards for conventional oil and gas extraction for possible future rulemaking, if appropriate. This is consistent with EPA's stated scope throughout the development of this proposed rule. See specific comment solicitation on conventional oil and gas extraction wastewaters in Section VII.

    B. Pollutants of Concern

    Since the effectiveness of the technology basis for the proposed standards results in zero discharge of all pollutants, it is not appropriate in this proposed rule to further specify the pollutants of concern. Rather, as is the case for the existing BPT requirements, the proposed PSES/PSNS apply to the discharge of all pollutants in UOG extraction wastewater.

    C. POTW Pass Through Analysis

    Sections 307(b) and (c) of the CWA authorize EPA to promulgate pretreatment standards for pollutants that are not susceptible to treatment by POTWs or which would interfere with the operation of POTWs. EPA looks at a number of factors in selecting the technology basis for pretreatment standards for existing and new sources. These factors are generally the same as those considered in establishing the direct discharge technology basis. However, unlike direct dischargers whose wastewater will receive no further treatment once it leaves the facility, indirect dischargers send their wastewater to POTWs for further treatment.

    Therefore, before establishing PSES/PSNS for a pollutant, EPA examines whether the pollutant “passes through” a POTW to waters of the U.S. or interferes with the POTW operation or biosolids disposal practices. In determining whether a pollutant would pass through POTWs for these purposes, EPA generally compares the percentage of a pollutant removed by well-operated POTWs performing secondary treatment to the percentage removed by a candidate technology basis. A pollutant is determined to pass through POTWs when the median percentage removed nationwide by well-operated POTWs is less than the median percentage removed by the candidate technology basis. Pretreatment standards are established for those pollutants regulated under the direct discharge level of control (typically BAT/NSPS) that passes through. In addition, EPA can regulate pollutants that do not pass through but otherwise interfere with POTW operations or biosolids disposal practices. This approach to the definition of pass through satisfies two competing objectives set by Congress: (1) That standards for indirect dischargers be equivalent to standards for direct dischargers, and (2) that the treatment capability and performance of POTWs be recognized and taken into account in regulating the discharge of pollutants from indirect dischargers.

    Historically, EPA's primary source of POTW removal data is its 1982 “Fate of Priority Pollutants in Publicly Owned Treatment Works” (also known as the 50 POTW Study) (see DCN SGE00765). The 50 POTW study presents data on the performance of 50 POTWs achieving secondary treatment in removing certain toxic pollutants. While the 50 POTW study demonstrates a wide variability in the effectiveness of POTWs in removing toxic pollutants, it demonstrates that POTWs remove these pollutants by less than 100%. Although this study does not contain information on pollutant removals for TDS, as explained earlier, secondary treatment technologies are generally understood to be ineffective at removing TDS and as such little to no TDS removals are likely to occur at POTWs through secondary treatment (DCN SGE00011; DCN SGE00600). While the POTW study also does not contain information for other pollutants that may be present in UOG extraction wastewater, it is reasonable for EPA to conclude that removal of UOG extraction wastewater pollutants by a well-operated POTW would be less than 100%, the percentage removal by the candidate technology basis for the proposed rule, and therefore would if discharged to a POTW “pass through” the POTW, as the term applies under the CWA, into waters of the U.S.

    XV. Environmental Impacts

    UOG production generates significant volumes of wastewater that need to be managed. As described in Section XII.C.2, wells can produce flowback volumes ranging between 210,000 and 2,100,000 gallons during the initial flowback process.24 During the production phase, wells typically produce smaller volumes of water (median flow rates range from 200-800 gallons per day) and continue producing wastewater throughout the life of the well.

    24 As explained in the TDD (Chapter B) the length of the flowback process is variable. Literature generally reports it as 30 days or less (DCN SGE00532).

    In general, evidence of environmental impacts to surface waters from discharges of UOG extraction wastewater is sparsely documented. Some of the environmental impacts documented to date, such as increased DBP formation in downstream drinking water treatment plants, resulted from wastewater pollutants that passed untreated through POTWs in Pennsylvania (TDD, Chapter D.5).

    A. Pollutants

    As described in Section XII.D., high concentrations of TDS are common in UOG extraction wastewater. As shown in Table XII-2. (in Section XII.D.), major inorganic constituents leaching from geologic formations such as sodium, potassium, bromide, calcium, fluoride, nitrate, phosphate, chloride, sulfate, and magnesium represent most of the TDS in UOG extraction wastewater. TDS in produced water can also include barium, radium, and strontium. Based on available data, TDS cations (positively charged ions) in UOG extraction wastewater are generally dominated by sodium and calcium, and the anions (negatively charged ions) are dominated by chloride (DCN SGE00284). TDS concentrations vary among the UOG formations. Table XII-1. (in Section XII.D.), presents the varying TDS concentrations in tight and shale oil and gas formations. The highest median TDS concentration (370,000 mg/L) is found in the Pearsall shale gas formation. For comparison, sea water contains approximately 35,000 mg/L TDS.

    B. Impacts From the Discharge of Pollutants Found in UOG Extraction Wastewater

    Conventional POTW treatment operations are designed primarily to treat organic waste and remove total suspended solids and constituents responsible for biochemical oxygen demand, not to treat waters with high TDS. When transfers of UOG extraction wastewater to POTWs were occurring in Pennsylvania, these POTWs, lacking adequate TDS removal processes, diluted UOG extraction wastewaters with other sewage flows and discharged TDS-laden effluent into local streams and rivers. POTWs not sufficiently treating TDS in UOG extraction wastewater were a suspected source of elevated TDS levels in the Monongahela River in 2009 (DCN SGE00525). Also see TDD, Chapter D.5 for additional examples.

    In addition to UOG wastewater pollutants passing through POTWs, other industrial discharges of inadequately treated UOG extraction wastewater pollutants have also been associated with in-stream impacts. One study reviewed by EPA of discharges from a CWT facility in western Pennsylvania that treats UOG extraction wastewater examined the water quality and isotopic compositions of discharged effluents, surface waters, and stream sediments (DCN SGE00629).25 The study found that the discharge of the effluent from the CWT facility increased downstream concentrations of chloride and bromide above background levels. The chloride concentrations 1.7 kilometers downstream of the treatment facility were two to ten times higher than chloride concentrations found in similar reference streams in western Pennsylvania. Radium 226 levels in stream sediments at the point of discharge were approximately 200 times greater than upstream and background sediments. EPA intends to further study the frequency and magnitude of such impacts from CWTs.

    25 Discharges from CWT facilities are subject to ELGs in 40 CFR part 437 and would not be subject to the proposed rule. However, the effect of discharges of treated oil and gas wastewaters from CWT facilities that lack high level treatment is similarly representative of POTWs.

    C. Impact on Surface Water Designated Uses

    UOG extraction wastewater TDS levels are high enough, if discharged untreated to surface water, to affect adversely a number of designated uses of surface water, including drinking water, aquatic life support, livestock watering, irrigation, and industrial use.

    1. Drinking Water Uses

    Available data indicate the levels of TDS in UOG extraction wastewaters can often significantly exceed recommended drinking water concentrations. Because TDS concentrations in drinking water sources are typically well below the recommended drinking water levels, few drinking water treatment facilities have technologies to remove TDS. Two published standards for TDS in drinking water include the U.S. Public Health Service recommendation and EPA's secondary maximum contaminant level recommendation that TDS in drinking water should not exceed 500 mg/L. High concentrations of TDS in drinking water primarily degrade its taste rather than pose a human health risk. Taste surveys found that water with less than 300 mg/L TDS is considered excellent, and water with TDS above 1,100 mg/L is unacceptable (DCN SGE00939). The World Health Organization dropped its health-based recommendations for TDS in 1993, instead retaining 1,000 mg/L as a secondary standard for taste (DCN SGE00947).

    EPA also reviewed a study concerning unintentional creation of harmful DBPs due to insufficient removal of bromide and other UOG wastewater constituents by POTWs accepting UOG extraction wastewaters (DCN SGE00535; DCN SGE00587). DBPs have been shown to have both adverse human health and ecological affects. The study found that UOG extraction wastewaters contain various inorganic and organic DBP precursors that can react with disinfectants used by POTWs to promote the formation of DBPs, or alter speciation of DBPs, particularly brominated-DBPs, which are suspected to be among the more toxic DBPs (DCN SGE00535; DCN SGE00985). These precursors are a concern for drinking water managers wherever they can enter raw water intakes. See TDD, Chapter D.5 for further discussion of DBP formation associated with UOG extraction wastewaters.

    2. Aquatic Life Support Uses

    TDS and its accompanying salinity play a primary role in the distribution and abundance of aquatic animal and plant communities. High levels of TDS can impact aquatic biota through increases in salinity, loss of osmotic balance in tissues, and toxicity of individual ions. Increases in salinity have been shown to cause shifts in biotic communities, limit biodiversity, exclude less-tolerant species and cause acute or chronic effects at specific life stages (DCN SGE00946). A detailed study of plant communities associated with irrigation drains, reported substantial changes in marsh communities in part because of an increase in dissolved solids (DCN SGE00941). Observations over time indicate a shift in plant community coinciding with increases in dissolved solids from estimated historic levels of 270 to 1170 mg/L, as species that are less salt tolerant such as coontail (Ceratophyllus demersum) and cattail (Typha sp.) were nearly eliminated. A related study found that lakes with higher salinity exhibit lower aquatic biodiversity, with species distribution also affected by ion composition (DCN SGE00940).

    It is often a specific ion concentration in TDS that is responsible for adverse effects to aquatic ecosystems. For example, a TDS concentration of 2,000 mg/L with chloride as the primary anionic constituent is acutely toxic to aquatic life, but the same TDS concentration composed primarily of sulfate is nontoxic. Sodium chloride accounts for about 50 percent of the TDS typically found in UOG extraction wastewater. As reported in Table XII-2 (in Section XII.D.), chloride has been measured at concentrations up to 230,000 mg/L. Macroinvertebrates, such as fresh water shrimp and aquatic insects that are a primary prey of many fish species, have open circulatory systems that are especially sensitive to pollutants like chloride. Based on laboratory toxicity data from EPA's 1988 chloride criteria document and more recent studies, invertebrate sensitivity to chloride acute effect concentrations ranged from 953 mg/L to 13,691 mg/L. Chronic effect concentrations of chloride ranged from 489 mg/L to 556 mg/L. In addition to the laboratory data, EPA also reviewed data from a 2009 Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection violation report documenting a fish kill attributed to a spill of diluted produced water in Hopewell Township, PA. TDS at the location of the fish kill was as high as 7,000 mg/L. While not related to UOG extraction wastewater, negative impacts of high TDS, including fish kills, were documented during 2009 at Dunkard Creek located in Monongalia County, Pennsylvania. (DCN SGE00001 and DCN SGE00001.A01)

    EPA has published chemical-specific national recommended water quality criteria for some of the TDS constituents in UOG extraction wastewater, such as barium, chloride, manganese, and iron, based on a variety of human health or ecological benchmarks. A review of state and tribal water quality standards in 2012 indicated that 26 states had adopted a numeric or narrative criterion for TDS, either for state-wide or site-specific application (DCN SGE00945). The TDS criteria levels and the designated uses they are intended to protect vary greatly from state to state. For example, Alaska has a criterion of 1,500 mg/L TDS to protect aquatic life; Mississippi has a criterion of 750 mg/L monthly average for protection of fish, wildlife and recreation criteria, and Illinois has a statewide 1,000 mg/L TDS criterion for aquatic life and a 1,500 mg/L TDS criterion for secondary contact recreation and indigenous aquatic life. TDS criteria adopted specifically for the protection of aquatic life have been developed for at least 16 of the 26 states, with some criteria applying only to specific waterbodies. Oregon has the most stringent TDS criterion using a standard of 100 mg/L for all freshwater streams and tributaries in order to protect aquatic life, public water use, agriculture, and recreation.

    3. Livestock Watering Uses

    POTW discharges to surface waters containing high concentrations of TDS can impact downstream uses for livestock watering. High TDS concentrations in water sources for livestock watering can adversely affect animal health by disrupting cellular osmotic and metabolic processes (DCN SGE01053). Domestic livestock, such as cattle, sheep, goats, horses, and pigs have varying degrees of sensitivity to TDS in drinking water as shown in Table XV-1. Sheep seem to be more tolerant of saline water than most domestic species, but will only drink it if introduced to the saline water over a period of several weeks (DCN SGE00937).

    Table XV-1—Tolerances of Livestock to TDS in Drinking Water Livestock Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) (mg/L) No adverse
  • effects on
  • animals
  • expected
  • Animals can
  • have initial
  • reluctance to drink or there can be some scouring, but stock should adapt without loss of
  • production
  • Loss of production and a decline in animal condition and health would be expected. Stock can tolerate these levels for short
  • periods if
  • introduced
  • gradually
  • Beef cattle 0-4,000 4,000-5,000 5,000-10,000 Dairy cattle 0-2,400 2,400-4,000 4,000-7,000 Sheep 0-4,000 4,000-10,000 10,000-13,000 Horses 0-4,000 4,000-6,000 6,000-7,000 Pigs 0-4,000 4,000-6,000 6,000-8,000 Poultry 0-2,000 2,000-3,000 3,000-4,000 Source: Australia and New Zealand Water Quality Guidelines 2000. Chapter 3 Primary Industries—9.3 Livestock drinking water guidelines (DCN SGE00937).
    4. Irrigation Uses

    If UOG extraction wastewater discharges to POTWs increase TDS concentrations in receiving streams, downstream irrigation uses of that surface water can be negatively affected. Elevated TDS levels can limit the usefulness of water for irrigation. Excessive salts affect crop yield in the short term, and the soil structure in the long term. Primary direct impacts of high salinity water on plant crops include physiological drought, increased osmotic potential of soil, specific ion toxicity, leaf burn, and nutrient uptake interferences (DCN SGE00938). In general, for various classes of crops the salinity tolerance decreases in the following order: forage crops, field crops, vegetables, fruits.

    The suitability of water for irrigation is classified using several different measurements, including TDS and electrical conductivity (EC). Table XV-2. shows a classification of TDS concentrations for irrigation suitability.

    Table XV-2—Permissible Limits for Classes of Irrigation Water Class of water Concentrations of TDS Electrical
  • conductivity a
  • (dS/m)
  • TDS by gravimetric
  • (mg/L)
  • Class 1. Excellent 0.250 175 Class 2. Good 0.250-0.750 175-275 Class 3. Permissible b 0.750-2.0 525-1,400 Class 4. Doubtful c 2.0-3.0 1.400-2,100 Class 5. Unsuitable c 3.0 >2,100 a = TDS (mg/L) ≉ Electrical Conductivity (EC) (deci-Siemen/meter (dS/m)) × 640 for EC < 5 dS/m. b = leaching needed if used. c = good drainage needed and sensitive plants will have difficulty obtaining stands. Source: Fipps (2003) (DCN SGE00936).

    In addition to short-term impacts to crop plants, irrigating with high TDS water can result in gradual accumulation of salts or sodium in soil layers and eventual decrease in soil productivity. The susceptibility of soils to degradation is dependent on the soil type and structure. Sandy soils are less likely than finely textured soils to accumulate salts or sodium. Soils with a high water table or poor drainage are more susceptible to salt or sodium accumulation. The most common method of estimating the suitability of a soil for crop production is through calculation of its sodicity as estimated by the soil's sodium absorption ratio (SAR). The SAR value is calculated by the equation: 26

    EP07AP15.012 The impact of irrigation water salinity on crop productivity is a function of both the SAR value and the electrical conductivity. The actual field-observed impacts are very site-specific depending on soil and crop system. (DCN SGE00938)

    26 The variables in the equation are defined as follows: [Na+]−Sodium concentration (mg/L); [Ca2+]−Calcium concentration (mg/L); [Mg2+]−Magnesium concentration (mg/L).

    5. Industrial Uses

    POTW discharges to surface waters are often upstream of industrial facilities that withdraw surface waters for various cooling and process uses. High levels of TDS can adversely affect industrial applications requiring the use of water in cooling tower operations, boiler feed water, food processing, and electronics manufacturing. Concentrations of TDS above 500 mg/L result in excessive corrosivity, scaling, and sedimentation in water pipes, water heaters, boilers and household appliances. Depending on the industry, TDS in intake water can interfere with chemical processes within the plant. Some industries requiring ultrapure water, such as semi-conductor manufacturing facilities, are particularly sensitive to high TDS levels due to the treatment cost for the removal of TDS.

    XVI. Non-Water Quality Environmental Impacts Associated With the Proposed Rule

    Because the elimination or reduction of one form of pollution can create or aggravate other environmental problems, EPA considers non-water quality environmental impacts (including energy impacts) that can result from the implementation of proposed regulations. EPA evaluated the potential impact of the proposed pretreatment standards on air emissions, solid waste generation, and energy consumption.

    The proposed PSES/PSNS would prohibit the discharge to POTWs of wastewater pollutants associated with UOG extraction. Because EPA knows of no POTWs that are currently accepting UOG extraction wastewater, the proposed PSES will require no changes in current industry wastewater management practices and, consequently, will have no incremental impacts on air emissions, solid waste generation, or energy consumption. Based on the reasoning that new sources will follow current industry practice, EPA projects no incremental non-water quality environmental impacts associated with PSNS.

    XVII. Implementation A. Implementation Deadline

    Because the requirements of the proposed rule are based on current practice, EPA proposes that the PSES/NSPS standards based on the regulatory options being proposed apply on the effective date of the final rule.

    B. Upset and Bypass Provisions

    A “bypass” is an intentional diversion of waste streams from any portion of a treatment facility. An “upset” is an exceptional incident in which there is unintentional and temporary noncompliance with technology-based permit effluent limitations because of factors beyond the reasonable control of the permittee. EPA's regulations for indirect dischargers concerning bypasses and upsets are set forth at 40 CFR 403.16 and 403.17.

    C. Variances and Modifications

    The CWA requires application of effluent limitations established pursuant to section 304 for direct dischargers and section 307 for all indirect dischargers. However, the statute provides for the modification of these national requirements in a limited number of circumstances. Moreover, the Agency has established administrative mechanisms to provide an opportunity for relief from the application of the national pretreatment standards for categories of existing sources.

    EPA can develop pretreatment standards different from the otherwise applicable requirements for an individual existing discharger if it is fundamentally different with respect to factors considered in establishing the standards applicable to the individual discharger. Such a modification is known as a “fundamentally different factors” (FDF) variance. See 40 CFR 403.13. EPA, in its initial implementation of the effluent guidelines program, provided for the FDF modifications in regulations. These were variances from the BCT effluent limitations, BAT limitations for toxic and nonconventional pollutants, and BPT limitations for conventional pollutants for direct dischargers. FDF variances for toxic pollutants were challenged judicially and ultimately sustained by the Supreme Court in Chemical Manufacturers Association v. Natural Resources Defense Council, 479 U.S. 116, 124 (U.S. 1985). FDF variances, however, are not available for new sources. E.I. Dupont v. Train, 430 U.S. 112, 138 (U.S. 1977).

    Subsequently, in the Water Quality Act of 1987, Congress added new CWA section 301(n). This provision explicitly authorizes modifications of the otherwise applicable BAT effluent limitations or categorical pretreatment standards if a discharger is fundamentally different with respect to the factors specified in CWA section 304 or 403 (other than costs) from those considered by EPA in establishing the effluent limitations or pretreatment standards. CWA section 301(n) also defined the conditions under which EPA can establish alternative requirements. Under section 301(n), an application for approval of a FDF variance must be based solely on (1) information submitted during rulemaking raising the factors that are fundamentally different or (2) information the applicant did not have an opportunity to submit. The alternate limitation must be no less stringent than justified by the difference and must not result in markedly more adverse non-water quality environmental impacts than the national limitation or standard.

    The legislative history of section 301(n) underscores the necessity for the FDF variance applicant to establish eligibility for the variance. EPA's regulations at 40 CFR 403.13 are explicit in imposing this burden upon the applicant. The applicant must show that the factors relating to the discharge controlled by the applicant's permit that are claimed to be fundamentally different are, in fact, fundamentally different from those factors considered by EPA in establishing the applicable pretreatment standards. In practice, very few FDF variances have been granted for past ELGs. An FDF variance may be available to an existing source subject to the proposed PSES, but an FDF variance is not available to a new source that would be subject to PSNS.

    XVIII. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews A. Executive Order 12866: Regulatory Planning and Review and Executive Order 13563: Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review

    This action is a “significant regulatory action” under the terms of Executive Order 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993). Accordingly, EPA submitted this action to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review under Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011) and any changes made in response to OMB recommendations have been documented in the docket for this action.

    B. Paperwork Reduction Act

    This action does not impose an information collection burden under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq. Burden is defined at 5 CFR 1320.3(b). This proposal would codify current industry practice and would not impose any additional reporting requirements.

    C. Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) generally requires an agency to prepare a regulatory flexibility analysis of any proposed rule that would be subject to notice and comment rulemaking requirements under the Administrative Procedure Act or any other statute unless the agency certifies that the rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. Small entities include small businesses, small organizations, and small governmental jurisdictions.

    For purposes of assessing the impacts of the proposed rule on small entities, small entity is defined as: (1) a small business that is primarily engaged in Crude Petroleum and Natural Gas Extraction and Natural Gas Liquid Extraction by NAICS code 211111 and 211112 with fewer than 500 employees (based on Small Business Administration size standards).

    After considering the economic impacts of the proposed rule on small entities, I certify that this action will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The small entities that would be subject to the requirements of this proposed rule are small businesses that engage in UOG extraction as defined in Section XI. No small businesses will experience an impact because the proposed rulemaking does not impose any new requirement that is not already being met by the industry.

    D. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

    This proposed rule does not contain a Federal mandate that can result in expenditures of $100 million or more for state, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or the private sector in any one year. As explained in Section VI.C., this proposed rule has no costs. Thus, this proposed rule would not be subject to the requirements of sections 202 or 205 of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA).

    This proposed rule also would not be subject to the requirements of section 203 of UMRA because it contains no regulatory requirements that might significantly or uniquely affect small governments. EPA has not identified any oil and gas facilities that are owned by small governments.

    E. Executive Order 13132: Federalism

    This action does not have federalism implications. It will not 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, as specified in Executive Order 13132. The proposed rule would not alter the basic state-federal scheme established in the CWA under which EPA authorizes states to carry out the NPDES permit program. EPA expects the proposed rule would have little effect on the relationship between, or the distribution of power and responsibilities among, the federal and state governments. Thus, Executive Order 13132 does not apply to this action. Although this order does not apply to this action, as explained in Section IX., EPA coordinated closely with states through a workgroup, as well as outreach efforts to pretreatment coordinators and pretreatment authorities.

    F. Executive Order 13175: Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal Governments

    This action does not have tribal implications, as specified in Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000). It will not have substantial direct effects on tribal governments, 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. The proposed rule contains no Federal mandates for tribal governments and does not impose any enforceable duties on tribal governments. Thus, Executive Order 13175 does not apply to this action.

    Although Executive Order 13175 does not apply to this action, EPA coordinated with tribal officials in developing this action. EPA coordinated with federally recognized tribal governments in May and June of 2014, sharing information about the UOG pretreatment standards proposed rulemaking with the National Tribal Caucus and the National Tribal Water Council. As part of this outreach effort, EPA collected data about UOG operations on tribal reservations, UOG operators that are affiliated with Indian tribes, and POTWs owned or operated by tribes that can accept industrial wastewaters (see DCN SGE00785). Based on this information, there are no tribes operating UOG wells that discharge wastewater to POTWs nor are there any tribes that own or operate POTWs that accept industrial wastewater from UOG facilities; therefore, this proposed rule will not impose any costs on tribes.

    G. Executive Order 13045: Protection of Children From Environmental Health and Safety Risks

    E.O. 13045 (62 FR 19885, April 23, 1997) applies to rules that are economically significant according to E.O. 12866 and involve a health or safety risk that can disproportionately affect children. This proposed action would not be subject to E.O. 13045 because it is estimated to cost less than $100 million and does not involve a safety or health risk that can have disproportionately negative effects on children.

    H. Executive Order 13211: Energy Effects

    This proposed action is not subject to Executive Order 13211, because it not a “significant energy action” as defined in Executive Order 13211, “Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use” (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001). This action will not have a significant adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or use of energy, as described in Section XVI. of the proposed rule.

    I. National Technology Transfer Advancement Act

    Section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995 (“NTTAA”), Public Law 104-113, 12(d) (15 U.S.C. 272 note) directs EPA to use voluntary consensus standards in its regulatory activities unless to do so would be inconsistent with applicable law or otherwise impractical. Voluntary consensus standards are technical standards (e.g., materials specifications, test methods, sampling procedures, and business practices) that are developed or adopted by voluntary consensus standards bodies. NTTAA directs EPA to provide Congress, through OMB, explanations when the Agency decides not to use available and applicable voluntary consensus standards.

    This proposed rulemaking does not involve technical standards. Therefore, EPA is not considering the use of any voluntary consensus standards.

    J. Executive Order 12898: Federal Actions To Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations

    Executive Order 12898 (59 FR 7629 (Feb. 16, 1994)) establishes federal executive policy on environmental justice. Its main provision directs federal agencies, to the greatest extent practicable and permitted by law, to make environmental justice part of their mission by identifying and addressing, as appropriate, disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects of their programs, policies, and activities on minority populations and low-income populations in the U.S.

    EPA determined that this proposed rule will not have disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects on minority or low-income populations because it does not affect the level of protection provided to human health or the environment. The proposed rule changes the control technology required but will neither increase nor decrease environmental protection (as described in Section VII.C.).

    EPA welcomes comments on this aspect of the proposed rulemaking and, specifically, invites the public to identify potential environmental justice considerations associated with this proposed regulation.

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 435

    Environmental protection, Pretreatment, Waste treatment and disposal, Water pollution control, Unconventional oil and gas extraction.

    Dated: March 31, 2015. Gina McCarthy, Administrator.

    Therefore, it is proposed that 40 CFR part 435 be amended as follows:

    PART 435—OIL AND GAS EXTRACTION POINT SOURCE CATEGORY 1. The authority citation for part 435 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    33 U.S.C. 1311, 1314, 1316, 1317, 1318, 1342 and 1361.

    2. Add § 435.33 to read as follows:
    § 435.33 Pretreatment standards of performance for existing sources (PSES).

    (a) PSES for Wastewater from Conventional Oil and Gas Extraction. [Reserved]

    (b) PSES for Wastewater from Unconventional Oil and Gas Extraction. Except as provided in 40 CFR 403.7 and 403.13, any existing source subject to this section, must achieve the following pretreatment standards for existing sources (PSES).

    (1) There shall be no discharge of wastewater pollutants associated with production, field exploration, drilling, well completion, or well treatment for unconventional oil and gas extraction (e.g., drilling muds, drill cuttings, produced sand, produced water) into publicly owned treatment works.

    (2) For the purposes of this section,

    (i) Unconventional oil and gas means crude oil and natural gas produced by a well drilled into a low porosity, low permeability formation (including, but not limited to, shale gas, shale oil, tight gas, tight oil).

    (ii) Drill cuttings means the particles generated by drilling into subsurface geologic formations and carried out from the wellbore with the drilling fluid.

    (iii) Drilling muds means the circulating fluid (mud) used in the rotary drilling of wells to clean and condition the hole and to counterbalance formation pressure.

    (iv) Produced sand means the slurried particles used in hydraulic fracturing, the accumulated formation sands, and scales particles generated during production. Produced sand also includes desander discharge from the produced water waste stream, and blowdown of the water phase from the produced water treating system.

    (v) Produced water means the water (brine) brought up from the hydrocarbon-bearing strata during the extraction of oil and gas, and can include formation water, injection water, and any chemicals added downhole or during the oil/water separation process.

    3. Add § 435.34 to read as follows:
    § 435.34 Pretreatment standards of performance for new sources (PSNS).

    (a) PSNS for Wastewater from Conventional Oil and Gas Extraction. [Reserved]

    (b) PSNS for Wastewater from Unconventional Oil and Gas Extraction. Except as provided in 40 CFR 403.7 and 403.13, any new source with discharges subject to this section must achieve the following pretreatment standards for new sources (PSNS).

    (1) There shall be no discharge of wastewater pollutants associated with production, field exploration, drilling, well completion, or well treatment for unconventional oil and gas extraction (e.g., drilling muds, drill cuttings, produced sand, produced water) into publicly owned treatment works.

    (2) For the purposes of this section, the definitions of unconventional oil and gas, drill cuttings, drilling muds, produced sand, and produced water are as specified in § 435.33(b)(2)(i) through (v).

    4. Add subpart H to read as follows: Subpart H—Coalbed Methane Subcategory [Reserved]
    [FR Doc. 2015-07819 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 a.m.] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION 48 CFR Parts 1801, 1802, 1805, 1807, 1812, 1813, 1823, 1833, 1836, 1847, 1850, and 1852 RIN 2700-AE19 NASA FAR Supplement Regulatory Review No. 3 AGENCY:

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    NASA is updating the NASA FAR Supplement (NFS) with the goal of eliminating unnecessary regulation, streamlining overly-burdensome regulation, clarifying language, and simplifying processes where possible. This proposed rule is the third and final in a series and includes updates and revisions to 10 parts of the NFS. On January 18, 2011, President Obama signed Executive Order (E.O.) 13563, Improving Regulations and Regulatory Review, directing agencies to develop a plan for a retrospective analysis of existing regulations. The revisions to this proposed rule are part of NASA's retrospective plan under E.O. 13563 completed in August 2011.

    DATES:

    Interested parties should submit comments to NASA at the address below on or before June 8, 2015 to be considered in formulation of the final rule.

    ADDRESSES:

    Interested parties may submit comments, identified by RIN number 2700-AE19 via the Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments. Comments may also be submitted to Cynthia Boots via email at [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Cynthia Boots, NASA, Office of Procurement, email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: A. Background

    The NASA FAR Supplement (NFS) is codified at 48 CFR part 1800. Periodically, NASA performs a comprehensive review and analysis of the regulation, makes updates and corrections, and reissues the NASA FAR Supplement. The last reissue was in 2004. The goal of the review and analysis is to reduce regulatory burden where justified and appropriate and make the NFS content and processes more efficient and effective, faster and simpler, in support of NASA's mission. Consistent with Executive Order (E.O.) 13563, Improving Regulations and Regulatory Review, NASA is currently reviewing and revising the NFS with an emphasis on streamlining it and reducing associated burdens. Due to the volume of the NFS, these revisions are being made in increments. This proposed rule is the third and final rule. The three rules together will constitute the NFS update and reissue. This proposed rule includes regulatory revisions to the following ten parts of the NFS:

    1801—Federal Acquisition Regulations Systems 1802—Definitions 1805—Publicizing Contract Actions 1807—Acquisition Planning 1812—Acquisition of Commercial Items 1813—Simplified Acquisition Procedures 1823—Environment, Energy and Water Efficiency, Renewable Energy Technologies, Occupational Safety, and Drug-Free Workplace 1833—Protests, Disputes and Appeals 1836—Construction and Architect-Engineer Contracts 1847—Transportation 1850—Extraordinary Contractual Actions and the Safety Act 1852—Solicitation Provisions and Contract Clauses

    Further, this proposed rule provides notice that no regulatory changes will be made to the following ten parts of the NFS:

    1803—Improper Business Practices and Personal Conflicts of Interest 1804—Administrative Matters 1808—Required Sources of Supplies and Services 1811—Describing Agency Needs 1825—Foreign Acquisition 1839—Acquisition of Information Technology 1835—Research and Development Contracting 1845—Government Property 1848—Value Engineering 1872—Acquisition of Investigations

    NASA analyzed the existing regulation to determine whether any portions should be modified, streamlined, expanded, or repealed in order to make the regulation more efficient and effective. Special emphasis was placed on identifying and eliminating or simplifying overly burdensome processes that could be streamlined without jeopardizing Agency mission effectiveness. Additionally, NASA sought to identify current regulatory coverage that is not regulatory in nature, and to remove or relocate such coverage to internal guidance. In addition to substantive changes, this proposed rule includes administrative changes necessary to make minor corrections and updates.

    Specifically, the changes in this proposed rule are summarized as follows:

    1801.106 is revised to reflect currently approved OMB Information Collection Requests

    1802.101 is revised to update the definition of Head of Contracting Activity to reflect internal organizational changes.

    1805.303(a)(i) is revised to delete the dollar figure of $3.5 million but retain the reference to the threshold at FAR 5.303(a). Consequently, if the threshold at FAR 5.303(a) changes at any time, NFS 1805.303(a)(i) will continue to be correct and will not require rule-making to reflect the FAR change.

    1807.107 and 1807.107-70 are deleted from the regulation. These sections provide NASA-internal direction to contracting officers and are not regulatory in nature. These sections, with minor edits, will remain non-codified internal guidance.

    1807.7200 is revised to reflect a change to a Web site address.

    1807.7201, the definition of “contract opportunity” is revised to delete “$25,000” and replace it with “the simplified acquisition threshold”.

    1812.301, the list of NFS clauses authorized for use in acquisition of commercial items updated through additions and deletions to reflect the list of currently approved clauses.

    1813.000 is deleted. This section is internal guidance. This cite stated that simplified acquisition procedures were not applicable to R&D contracts for which proposals were solicited via a NASA Research Announcement (NRA) or an Announcement of Opportunity (OA). Removing the text from the regulation removes unnecessary regulation and it permits NASA to utilize simplified acquisition procedures for R&D contracting, as appropriate.

    1823.7001, NASA solicitation provisions and contract clauses, is revised to specify that a safety and health plan may be required for acquisitions above the simplified acquisition threshold when the work will be conducted completely or partly on a Federally-controlled facility. The revision also provides three options to the contracting officer concerning the requirement for a safety and health plan. The contracting officer may use the clause at 1852.223-70, Safety and Health, when the safety and health plan will be evaluated as part of proposal evaluation. The contracting officer may use the FAR clause 52.236-13, Accident Prevention, and its Alternate I, when the safety and health plan will submitted after contract award for approval. The contracting officer may use the clause at 1852.223-72, Safety and Health (Short Form), when a safety and health plan is not required to be submitted under the contract. Additionally, when using the FAR clause at 52.236-13 with its Alternate I, the contracting officer is authorized to modify the wording in paragraph (f) of Alternate I to specify: (1) When the proposed plan is due and (2) Whether the contractor may commence work prior to approval of the plan; or (3) To what extent the contractor may commence work before the plan is approved.

    1833.103 is revised to clarify that bidders or offerors may either protest directly to the contracting officer, or alternatively, request an independent review by the Assistant Administrator of Procurement, consistent with FAR 33.103.

    Likewise, the corresponding clause at 1852.233 is revised to reflect the same clarification.

    1833.106-70 and 1833.215 are revised to correct capitalization and lower case usage, consistent with FAR convention.

    1836.513, Accident prevention, is revised to allow the use of FAR clause 52.236-13, Accident Prevention in certain circumstances, as specified at 1823.7001, when a safety and health plan is required under the contract but will not be evaluated with proposals.

    1847, The clause at 1852.247-71, Protection of the Florida Manatee, is revised to reflect current technical requirements and organizational points of contact in order to ensure that information essential to protecting the endangered manatee will be properly conveyed to contractors working on-site at NASA Kennedy Space Center (KSC). The clause was previously published as a proposed rule 73 FR 63420.

    1850.104, Several administrative changes are made to the processing of contractor requests under the Safety Act. Although most of these changes involve internal NASA operations, the coverage will remain in the NFS because it is important for offerors to have a full understanding of agency activities related to the unique authority of the Safety Act.

    1850.104-70 is deleted. This section assigned cognizance for indemnification applications to the NASA installation with the highest dollar value of contracts. The administrative changes to 1850.104 described immediately above clarify that all indemnity applications will be made to NASA HQ, with the NASA Administrator as the approval authority.

    B. Executive Orders 12866 and 13563

    Executive Orders (E.O.s) 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess all costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, if regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public health and safety effects, distributive impacts, and equity). E.O. 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, of reducing costs, of harmonizing rules, and of promoting flexibility. This proposed rule is not a “significant regulatory action” under section 3(f) of E.O. 12866. This proposed rule is not a major rule under 5 U.S.C. 804.

    C. Regulatory Flexibility Act

    NASA does not expect this proposed rule to have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities within the meaning of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq. because it mainly clarifies or updates existing regulations. In several instances, this proposed rule deletes existing requirements which eases the regulatory burden on all entities, minimizing the number of resources used to collect the data and report it to the government.

    D. Paperwork Reduction Act

    The proposed rule contains no new information collection requirements that require the approval of the Office of Management and Budget under the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. chapter 35).

    List of Subjects in 48 CFR 1801, 1802, 1805, 1807, 1812, 1813, 1823, 1833, 1836, 1847, 1850, and 1852

    Government procurement.

    Cynthia Boots, Alternate Federal Register Liaison.

    Accordingly, 48 CFR parts 1801, 1802, 1805, 1807, 1812, 1813, 1823, 1833, 1836, 1847, 1850, and 1852 are proposed to be amended as follows:

    PART 1801—FEDERAL ACQUISITION REGULATIONS SYSTEM 1. The authority citation for part 1801 is revised to read as follows Authority:

    51 U.S.C. 20113(a).

    2. Section 1801.106 is revised to read as follows:
    1801.106 OMB approval under the Paperwork Reduction Act.

    (1) NFS requirements. The following OMB control numbers apply:

    NFS
  • Segment
  • OMB Control No.
    1823 2700-0089 1827 2700-0052 1843 2700-0054 NF 533 2700-0003 NF 1018 2700-0017
    PART 1802—DEFINITIONS OF WORDS AND TERMS 3. The authority citation for part 1802 is revised to read as follows: Authority:

    51 U.S.C. 20113(a).

    4. In section 1802.101, the definition for “Head of the contracting activity (HCA)” is revised to read as follow:
    1802.101 Definitions.

    Head of the contracting activity (HCA) means, for field installations, the Director or other head, and for NASA Headquarters, the Director for Headquarters Operations. For Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate (HEOMD) contracts, the HCA is the Associate Administrator for HEOMD in lieu of the field Center Director(s). For NASA Shared Services Center (NSSC) contracts, the HCA is the Executive Director of the NSSC in lieu of the field Center Director(s).

    PART 1805 —PUBLICIZING CONTRACT ACTIONS 5. The authority citation for part 1805 is revised to read as follows: Authority:

    51 U.S.C. 20113(a).

    6. Section 1805.303 is revised to read as follows:
    1805.303 Announcement of contract awards.

    (a)(i) In lieu of the threshold cited in FAR 5.303(a), a NASA Headquarters public announcement is required for award of contract actions that have a total anticipated value, including unexercised options, of $5 million or greater.

    PART 1807—ACQUISITION PLANNING 7. The authority citation for part 1807 is revised to read as follows: Authority:

    51 U.S.C. 20113(a).

    Subpart 1807.1 [Removed] 8. Subpart 1807.01, consisting of sections 1807.107 and 1807.107-70, is removed. 9. In section 1807.7200, paragraph (b) is revised to read as follows:
    1807.7200 Policy.

    (b) The annual forecast and semiannual update are available on the NASA Acquisition Internet Service (http://www.hq.nasa.gov/office/procurement/forecast/index.html).

    10. In section 1807.7201, the definition for “Contract opportunity” is revised to read as follows:
    1807.7201 Definitions.

    Contract opportunity means planned new contract awards exceeding the simplified acquisition threshold (SAT).

    PART 1812—ACQUISITION OF COMMERCIAL ITEMS 11. The authority citation for part 1812 is revised to read as follows: Authority:

    51 U.S.C. 20113(a).

    12. Section 1812.301 is revised to read as follows:
    1812.301 Solicitation provisions and contract clauses for the acquisition of commercial items.

    (f)(i) The following clauses are authorized for use in acquisitions of commercial items when required by the clause prescription:

    (A) 1852.204-75, Security Classification Requirements.

    (B) 1852.204-76, Security Requirements for Unclassified Information Technology Resources.

    (C) 1852.215-84, Ombudsman.

    (D) 1852.216-80, Task Order Procedures (Alternate I).

    (E) 1852.216-88, Performance Incentive.

    (F) 1852.219-73, Small Business Subcontracting Plan.

    (G) 1852.219-75, Small Business Subcontracting Reporting.

    (H) 1852.223-70, Safety and Health.

    (I) 1852.223-71, Frequency Authorization.

    (J) 1852.223-72, Safety and Health (Short Form).

    (K) 1852.223-73, Safety and Health Plan.

    (L) 1852.223-75, Major Breach of Safety and Security (Alternate I).

    (M) 1852.225-70, Export Licenses.

    (N) 1852.228-76, Cross-Waiver of Liability for International Space Station Activities.

    (O) 1852.228-78, Cross-Waiver of Liability for Science or Space Exploration Activities Unrelated to the International Space Station.

    (P) 1852.237-70, Emergency Evacuation Procedures.

    (Q) 1852.237-72, Access to Sensitive Information.

    (R) 1852.237-73, Release of Sensitive Information.

    (S) 1852.246-72, Material Inspection and Receiving Report.

    (T) 1852.247.71, Protection of the Florida Manatee.

    13. In section 1812.7000: a. Paragraphs (d) is removed; b. Paragraphs (a), (b), and (c) are redesignated as paragraph (b), (c), and (d), respectively; and c. Paragraph (a) is added.

    The addition reads as follows:

    1812.7000 Anchor tenancy contracts.

    (a) The term “anchor tenancy” means an arrangement in which the United States Government agrees to procure sufficient quantities of a commercial space product or service needed to meet Government mission requirements so that a commercial venture is made viable.

    PART 1813—SIMPLIFIED ACQUISITION PROCEDURES 14. The authority citation for part 1813 is revised to read as follows: Authority:

    51 U.S.C. 20113(a).

    1813.000 [Removed]
    15. Section 1813.000 is removed. PART 1823 —ENVIROMENT, ENERGY AND WATER EFFICIENCY, RENEWABLE ENERGY TECHNOLOGIES, OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY, AND DRUG-FREE WORKPLACE 16. The authority citation for part 1823 is revised to read as follows: Authority:

    51 U.S.C. 20113(a).

    17. In section 1823.7001: a. Paragraph (c) is revised; b. Paragraphs (d) and (e) are redesignated as paragraphs (e) and (f), respectively, and newly redesignated paragraph (f) is revised; and c. Paragraph (d) is added.

    The revisions and addition read as follows:

    1823.7001 NASA solicitation provisions and contract clauses.

    (c) The contracting officer shall insert the clause at 1852.223-73, Safety and Health Plan, in solicitations above the simplified acquisition threshold when the work will be conducted completely or partly on a Federally-controlled facility and the safety and health plan will be evaluated in source selection as approved by the source selection authority. This clause may be modified to identify specific information that is to be included in the plan. After receiving the concurrence of the center safety and occupational health official(s), the contracting officer shall incorporate the plan as an attachment into any resulting contract. The contracting officer shall insert the clause, with its Alternate I, in Invitations for Bid.

    (d) The contracting officer shall insert FAR clause at 52.236-13 with its Alternate I in solicitations and contracts when the work will be conducted completely or partly on a Federally-controlled facility and a Safety and Health Plan will be reviewed after award as a contract deliverable. The contracting officer may modify the wording in paragraph (f) of Alternate I to specify:

    (1) When the proposed plan is due; and

    (2) Whether the contractor may commence work prior to approval of the plan; or

    (3) To what extent the contractor may commence work before the plan is approved.

    The requiring activity, in consultation with the cognizant health and safety official(s), will identify the data deliverable requirements for the safety and health plan. After receiving the concurrence of the center safety and occupational health official(s), the contracting officer shall incorporate the plan as an attachment into the contract.

    (f) The contracting officer shall insert the clause at 1852.223-72, Safety and Health (Short Form) in solicitations and contracts above the simplified acquisition threshold when work will be conducted completely or partly on Federally-controlled facilities and that do not contain the clause at 1852.223-73 or the FAR clause at 52.236-13 with its Alternate I.

    PART 1833—PROTESTS, DISPUTES, AND APPEALS 18. The authority citation for part 1833 is revised to read as follows: Authority:

    51 U.S.C. 20113(a).

    19. Section 1833.103 is revised to read as follows:
    1833.103 Protests to the agency.

    (d)(4) The provision at 1852.233-70 provides for an alternative to a protest to the United States Government Accountability Office (GAO). This alternative gives bidders or offerors the ability to protest directly to the contracting officer (CO) or to request an independent review by the Assistant Administrator for Procurement (or designee). The Agency review shall be deemed to be at the CO level when the request is silent as to the level of review desired. The Agency review shall be deemed to be at the level of the Assistant Administrator for Procurement (or designee) when the request specifies a level above the CO, even if the request doesn't specifically request an independent review by the Assistant Administrator for Procurement. Such reviews are separate and distinct from the Ombudsman Program described at 1815.7001.

    (e) NASA shall summarily dismiss and take no further action upon any protest to the Agency if the substance of the protest is pending in judicial proceedings or the protester has filed a protest on the same acquisition with the GAO prior to receipt of an Agency protest decision.

    (4) When a bidder or offeror submits an Agency protest to the CO or alternatively requests an independent review by the Assistant Administrator for Procurement, the decision of the CO or the Assistant Administrator for Procurement shall be final and is not subject to any appeal or reconsideration within NASA.

    1833.106-70 [Amended]
    20. In section 1833.106-70, remove the words “Contracting officers” and add in their place the words “The contracting officer”.
    1833.215 [Amended]
    21. In section 1833.215, remove the word “agency” and add in its place the word “Agency”. PART 1836—CONSTRUCTION AND ARCHITECT-ENGINEER CONTRACTS 22. The authority citation for part 1836 is revised to read as follows: Authority:

    51 U.S.C. 20113(a).

    23. Section 1836.513 is revised to read as follows:
    1836.513 Accident prevention.

    For additional guidance on the use of FAR clause 52.236-13, Accident Prevention, and its Alternate I in NASA contracts, see 1823.7001(d).

    PART 1850—EXTRAORDINARY CONTRACTUAL ACTIONS AND THE SAFETY ACT 24. The authority citation for part 1850 is added to read as follows: Authority:

    51 U.S.C. 20113(a).

    1850.103-570 [Amended]
    25. In section 1850.103-570, paragraph (a), remove the words “Associate General Counsel for General Law” and add in their place the words “Associate General Counsel for Contracts and Procurement Law”.
    1850.103-670 [Amended]
    26. In section 1850.103-670, paragraph (b), remove the words “Associate General Counsel for General Law” and add in their place the words “Associate General Counsel for Contracts and Procurement Law”. 27. Section 1850.104-2 is added to read as follows:
    1850.104-2 General.

    (a) Requests for the exercise of residual powers shall be sent to the Headquarters Office of Procurement, Program Operations Division for review and processing. The NASA Administrator is the approval authority for the Memorandum of Decision.

    28. Section 1850.104-3 is revised to read as follows:
    1850.104-3 Special procedures for unusually hazardous or nuclear risks.

    (a) Indemnification requests. (1) Contractor indemnification requests must be submitted to the cognizant contracting officer for the contract for which the indemnification clause is requested. The request shall be submitted six (6) months in advance of the desired effective date of the requested indemnification in order to allow sufficient time for the request to be reviewed, analyzed, and approved by the Agency. Contractors shall submit a single request and shall ensure that duplicate requests are not submitted by associated divisions, subsidiaries, or central offices of the contractor.

    (ii) The Contractor's request for indemnification must identify a sufficient factual basis for indemnification by explaining specifically what work activities under the contract create the unusually hazardous or nuclear risk and identifying the timeframes in which the risk would be incurred.

    (iii) The contractor shall also provide evidence, such as a certificate of insurance or other customary proof of insurance, that such insurance is either in force or is available and will be in force during the indemnified period.

    (b) Action on indemnification requests. (1) If recommending approval, the contracting officer shall forward the required information to the NASA Headquarters Office of Procurement, Program Operations Division, along with the following:

    (i) For contracts of five years duration or longer, a determination, with supporting rationale, whether the indemnification approval and insurance coverage and premiums should be reviewed for adequacy and continued validity at points in time within the extended contract period.

    (ii) The specific definition of the unusually hazardous risk to which the contractor is exposed in the performance of the contract(s), including specificity about which activities present such risk and the anticipated timeframes in which the risk will be incurred;

    (iv) A complete discussion of the contractor's financial protection program; and

    (vi) The extent to, and conditions under, which indemnification is being approved for subcontracts.

    (2) The NASA Administrator is the approval authority for using the indemnification clause in a contract by a Memorandum of Decision.

    (4)(ii) If approving subcontractor indemnification, the contracting officer shall document the file with a memorandum for record addressing the items set forth in FAR 50.104-3(b) and include an analysis of the subcontractor's financial protection program. In performing this analysis, the contracting officer shall take into consideration the availability, cost, terms and conditions of insurance in relation to the unusually hazardous risk.

    29. Section 1850.104-4 is added to read as follows:
    1850.104-4 Contract clause.

    The contracting officer shall obtain the NASA Administrator's approval prior to including clause 52.250-1 in a contract.

    1850.104-70 [Removed]
    30. Section 1850.104-70 is removed. PART 1852—SOLICITATION PROVISIONS AND CONTRACT CLAUSES 31. The authority citation for part 1852 is revised to read as follows: Authority:

    51 U.S.C. 20113(a).

    32. Sections 1852.223-72 and 1852.223-73 are revised to read as follows:
    1852.223-72 Safety and Health (Short Form).

    As prescribed in 1823.7001(f), insert the following clause:

    SAFETY AND HEALTH (SHORT FORM) (XX/XX)

    (a) Safety is the freedom from those conditions that can cause death, injury, occupational illness; damage to or loss of equipment or property, or damage to the environment. NASA is committed to protecting the safety and health of the public, our team members, and those assets that the Nation entrusts to the Agency.

    (b) The Contractor shall have a documented, comprehensive and effective health and safety program with a proactive process to identify, assess, and control hazards and take all reasonable safety and occupational health measures consistent with standard industry practice in performing this contract

    (c) The Contractor shall insert the substance of this clause, including this paragraph (c) in subcontracts that exceed the simplified acquisition threshold where work will be conducted completely or partly on Federally-controlled facilities.

    (End of clause)
    1852.223-73 Safety and Health Plan.

    As prescribed in 1823.7001(c), insert the following clause:

    SAFETY AND HEALTH PLAN (XX/XX)

    (a) The offeror shall submit a detailed safety and occupational health plan as part of its proposal. The plan shall include a detailed discussion of the policies, procedures, and techniques that will be used to ensure the safety and occupational health of Contractor employees and to ensure the safety of all working conditions throughout the performance of the contract.

    (b) The plan shall similarly address subcontractor employee safety and occupational health for those proposed subcontracts or subcontract effort where the work will be conducted completely or partly on a Federally-controlled facility

    (d) This plan, as approved by the Contracting Officer, will be incorporated into any resulting contract.

    (End of clause) ALTERNATE I (XX/XX)

    As prescribed in 1823.7001(c)(1), delete the first sentence in paragraph (a) of the basic provision and substitute the following:

    The apparent low bidder, upon request by the Contracting Officer, shall submit a detailed safety and occupational health plan. The plan shall be submitted within the time specified by the Contracting Officer. Failure to submit an acceptable plan shall make the bidder ineligible for the award of a contract.

    33. Section 1852.233-70 is revised to read as follows:
    1852.233-70 Protests to NASA.

    As prescribed in 1833.106-70, insert the following provision:

    PROTESTS TO NASA (XX/XX)

    (a) In lieu of a protest to the United States Government Accountability Office (GAO), bidders or offerors may submit a protest under 48 CFR part 33 (FAR part 33) directly to the Contracting Officer for consideration by the Agency. Alternatively, bidders or offerors may request an independent review by the Assistant Administrator for Procurement, who will serve as or designate the official responsible for conducting an independent review. Such reviews are separate and distinct from the Ombudsman Program described at 1815.7001.

    (b) Bidders or offerors shall specify whether they are submitting a protest to the Contracting Officer or requesting an independent review by the Assistant Administrator for Procurement.

    (c) Protests to the Contracting Officer shall be submitted to the address or email specified in the solicitation (email is an acceptable means for submitting a protest to the Contracting Officer). Alternatively, requests for independent review by the Assistant Administrator for Procurement shall be addressed to the Assistant Administrator for Procurement, NASA Headquarters, Washington, DC 20456-0001.

    (End of provision)
    34. Section 1852.247-71 is revised to read as follows:
    1852.247-71 Protection of the Florida Manatee.

    As prescribed in 1847.7001, insert the following clause:

    PROTECTION OF THE FLORIDA MANATEE (XX/XX)

    (a) Pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (Pub. L. 93-205), as amended, and the Marine Mammals Protection Act of 1972 (Pub. L. 92-522), the Florida Manatee (Trichechus Manatus) has been designated an endangered species, and the Indian River Lagoon system within and adjacent to National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA's) Kennedy Space Center (KSC) has been designated as a critical habitat of the Florida Manatee. The KSC Environmental Management Branch will advise all personnel associated with the project of the potential presence of manatees in the work area, and the need to avoid collisions and/or harassment of the manatees. Contractors shall ensure that all employees, subcontractors, and other individuals associated with this contract and who are involved in vessel operations, dockside work, and selected disassembly functions are aware of the civil and criminal penalties for harming, harassing, or killing manatees.

    (b) All contractor personnel shall be responsible for complying with all applicable Federal and/or state permits (e.g., Florida Department of Environmental Protection, St. Johns River Water Management District, Fish & Wildlife Service) in performing water-related activities within the contract. Where no Federal and/or state permits are required for said contract, and the contract scope requires activities within waters at KSC, the Contractor shall obtain a KSC Manatee Protection Permit from the Environmental Management Branch. All conditions of Federal, state, and/or KSC regulations and permits for manatee protection shall be binding to the contract. Notification and coordination of all water related activities at KSC will be done through the Environmental Management Branch.

    (c) The Contractor shall incorporate the provisions of this clause in applicable subcontracts.

    (End of clause)
    [FR Doc. 2015-07737 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7510-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 229 [Docket No. 150122067-5229-01] RIN 0648-BE83 Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to Commercial Fishing Operations; Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan Regulations; Correction AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule; request for comments; correction.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS published a proposed rule in the Federal Register on March 19, 2015, to amend the regulations implementing the Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan. This action proposed to change the minimum number of traps per trawl to allow fishing with a single trap in certain Massachusetts and Rhode Island state waters; and proposed to modify the requirement to use one endline on trawls within certain areas in Massachusetts state waters. NMFS also proposed a 1/4 mile buffer in waters surrounding certain islands in Maine to allow fishing with a single trap. In addition, NMFS proposed additional gear marking requirements for those waters allowing single traps as well as two new high use areas for humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) and North Atlantic right whales (Eubalaena glacialis). In that proposal, NMFS provided the wrong address for the submission of electronic comments. With this document, we correct our error by publishing the correct ADDRESSES section in its entirety.

    DATES:

    We will accept comments on the March 19, 2015, (80 FR 14345) proposed rule that are received or postmarked on or before April 20, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments on the March 19, 2015, proposed rule, identified by NOAA-NMFS-2015-0012, by either of the following methods:

    • Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal.

    1. Go to www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2015-0012.

    2. Click the “Comment Now!” icon, complete the required fields.

    3. Enter or attach your comments.

    • Mail: Submit written comments to Kim Damon-Randall, Assistant Regional Administrator for Protected Resources, NMFS Greater Atlantic Region, 55 Great Republic Dr., Gloucester, MA 01930, Attn: Large Whale Proposed Rule.

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

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Kate Swails, NMFS Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office, 978-282-8481, [email protected]; or, Kristy Long, NMFS Office of Protected Resources, 206-526-4792, [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Correction

    In a proposed rule that published in the Federal Register on March 19, 2015 (FR Doc. 2015-06272), (80 FR 14345) the ADDRESSES section provided the wrong address for the submission of electronic comments. The corrected ADDRESSES section appears above. All other information in the proposed rule, other than the ADDRESSES section, remains exactly the same as previously published.

    Dated: March 27, 2015. Samuel D. Rauch III, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2015-08003 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    80 66 Tuesday, April 7, 2015 Notices DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Commodity Credit Corporation Notice of Funds Availability: Inviting Applications for the Technical Assistance for Specialty Crops Program

    Announcement Type: New.

    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 10.604.

    SUMMARY:

    The Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) announces that it is inviting proposals for the 2016 Technical Assistance for Specialty Crops (TASC) program. The intended effect of this notice is to solicit applications from the private sector and from government agencies for fiscal year 2016 and to set out criteria for the award of funds in October 2015. The TASC program is administered by personnel of the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS).

    DATES:

    To be considered for funding, applications must be received by 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015. Any applications received after this time will be considered only if funds are still available.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Entities wishing to apply for funding assistance should contact the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service by courier address: Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 720-4327, or by fax: (202) 720-9361, or by email: [email protected] Information is also available on the FAS Web site at http://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/technical-assistance-specialty-crops-tasc.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: A. Funding Opportunity Description

    Authority: The TASC program is authorized by section 3205 of Pubic Law 107-171. TASC regulations appear at 7 CFR part 1487.

    Purpose: The TASC program is designed to assist U.S. organizations by providing funding for projects that address sanitary, phytosanitary, or technical barriers that prohibit or threaten the export of U.S. specialty crops. U.S. specialty crops, for the purpose of the TASC program, are defined to include all cultivated plants, or the products thereof, produced in the United States, except wheat, feed grains, oilseeds, cotton, rice, peanuts, sugar, and tobacco.

    Prior to the enactment of the Agricultural Act of 2014 (Act) on February 7, 2014, the TASC program was not available to address technical barriers to trade except for those that were related to sanitary or phytosanitary issues. The Act amended the statute authorizing the TASC program to allow the program to be used to address technical barriers to trade regardless of whether the barriers are related to a sanitary or phytosanitary barrier. The TASC regulations have been amended to reflect the recent statutory change.

    As a general matter, TASC program projects should be designed to address the following criteria:

    • Projects should identify and address a sanitary, phytosanitary, or other technical barrier that prohibits or threatens the export of U.S. specialty crops;

    • Projects should demonstrably benefit the represented industry rather than a specific company or brand;

    • Projects must address barriers to exports of commercially-available U.S. specialty crops for which barrier removal would predominantly benefit U.S. exports; and

    • Projects should include an explanation as to what specifically could not be accomplished without Federal funding assistance and why the participating organization(s) would be unlikely to carry out the project without such assistance.

    Examples of expenses that CCC may agree to reimburse under the TASC program include, but are not limited to: initial pre-clearance programs, export protocol and work plan support, seminars and workshops, study tours, field surveys, development of pest lists, pest and disease research, reasonable logistical and administrative support, and travel and per diem expenses.

    B. Award Information

    In general, and subject to the availability of funding, all qualified proposals received before the specified application deadline will compete for funding. The limited funds and the range of barriers affecting the exports of U.S. specialty crops worldwide preclude CCC from approving large budgets for individual projects. Proposals requesting more than $500,000 in any given year will not be considered. Additionally, private entities may submit multi-year proposals that may be considered in the context of a detailed strategic implementation plan. The maximum duration of an activity is 5 years. Funding in such cases may, at FAS' discretion, be provided one year at a time with commitments beyond the first year subject to interim evaluations and funding availability. In order to validate funding eligibility, proposals must specify previous years of TASC funding for each proposed activity/title/market/constraint combination. Government entities are not eligible for multi-year funding.

    Applicants may submit multiple proposals, and applicants with previously approved TASC proposals may apply for additional funding. The number of approved projects that a TASC participant can have underway at any given time is five. Please see 7 CFR part 1487 for additional restrictions.

    FAS will consider providing either grant funds as direct assistance to U.S. organizations or technical assistance on behalf of U.S. organizations, provided that the organization submits timely and qualified proposals. FAS will review all proposals against the evaluation criteria contained in the program regulations.

    Funding for successful proposals will be provided through specific agreements. These agreements will incorporate the proposal as approved by FAS. FAS must approve in advance any subsequent changes to the project. FAS or another Federal agency may be involved in the implementation of approved projects.

    C. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: Any U.S. organization, private or government, with a demonstrated role or interest in exporting U.S. agricultural commodities may apply to the program. Government organizations consist of Federal, State, and local agencies. Private organizations include non-profit trade associations, universities, agricultural cooperatives, state regional trade groups, and private companies.

    Foreign organizations, whether government or private, may participate as third parties in activities carried out by U.S. organizations, but are not eligible for funding assistance from the program.

    2. Cost Sharing or Matching: FAS considers the applicant's willingness to contribute resources, including cash, goods, and services of the U.S. industry and foreign third parties, when determining which proposals are approved for funding.

    3. Proposals should include a justification for funding assistance from the program—an explanation as to what specifically could not be accomplished without Federal funding assistance and why the participating organization(s) would be unlikely to carry out the project without such assistance.

    D. Application and Submission Information

    1. Application through the Unified Export Strategy (UES): Organizations are strongly encouraged to submit their applications to FAS through the UES application Internet Web site. Using the UES application process reduces paperwork and expedites FAS's processing and review cycle. Applicants planning to use the UES Internet-based system must contact FAS/Program Operations Division to obtain site access information, including a user ID and password. The UES Internet-based application may be found at the following URL address: https://www.fas.usda.gov/ues/webapp/.

    Although FAS highly recommends applying via the Internet-based UES application, as this format virtually eliminates paperwork and expedites the FAS processing and review cycle, applicants also have the option of submitting an electronic version to FAS at [email protected]

    2. Content and Form of Application Submission: All TASC proposals must contain complete information about the proposed projects as described in § 1487.5(b) of the TASC program regulations.

    In addition, in accordance with 2 CFR part 25, each entity that applies to the TASC program and does not qualify for an exemption under 2 CFR 25.110 must:

    (i) Provide a valid DUNS number in each application or plan it submits to CCC;

    (ii) Be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) prior to submitting an application or plan; and

    (iii) Continue to maintain an active SAM registration with current information at all times during which it has an active Federal award or an application or plan under consideration by CCC.

    Similarly, in accordance with 2 CFR part 170, each entity that applies to the TASC program and does not qualify for an exception under 2 CFR 170.110(b) must ensure it has the necessary processes and systems in place to comply with the applicable reporting requirements of 2 CFR part 170 should it receive TASC funding.

    Incomplete applications and applications that do not otherwise conform to this announcement will not be accepted for review.

    3. Submission Dates and Times: TASC proposals are reviewed on a rolling basis during the fiscal year as long as TASC funding is available as set forth below:

    • Proposals received by, but not later than, 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015, will be considered for funding with other proposals received by that date;

    • Proposals not approved for funding during the review period will be reconsidered for funding after the review period only if the applicant specifically requests such reconsideration in writing, and only if funding remains available;

    • Proposals received after 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015, will be considered in the order received for funding only if funding remains available.

    Notwithstanding the foregoing, a proposal may be submitted for expedited consideration under the TASC Quick Response process if, in addition to meeting all requirements of the TASC program, a proposal clearly identifies a time-sensitive activity. In these cases, a proposal may be submitted at any time for an expedited evaluation. Such a proposal must include a specific request for expedited evaluation.

    FAS will track the time and date of receipt of all proposals.

    4. Funding Restrictions: Although funded projects may take place in the United States or abroad, all eligible projects must specifically address sanitary, phytosanitary, or related technical barriers to the export of U.S. specialty crops.

    Certain types of expenses are not eligible for reimbursement by the program, such as the costs of market research, advertising, or other promotional expenses, and will be set forth in the written program agreement between CCC and the participant. CCC will also not reimburse unreasonable expenditures or any expenditure made prior to approval of a proposal.

    5. Other Submission Requirements: All Internet-based applications must be properly submitted by 5 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015, in order to be considered for funding; late submissions received after the deadline will be considered only if funding remains available. All applications submitted by email must be received by 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015, at [email protected] in order to receive the same consideration.

    E. Application Review Information

    1. Criteria: FAS follows the evaluation criteria set forth in § 1487.6 of the TASC regulations and in this Notice. Reviewers will evaluate according to the following criteria: (1) The nature of the specific export barrier and the extent to which the proposal is likely to successfully remove, resolve, or mitigate that barrier (12.5%);

    (2) The potential trade impact of the proposed project on market retention, market access, and market expansion, including the potential for expanding commercial sales in the targeted market (12.5%);

    (3) The completeness and viability of the proposal. Among other things, this can include the cost of the project and the amount of other resources dedicated to the project, including cash and goods and services of the U.S. industry and foreign third parties (15%) and the effectiveness and potential of the performance measures (10%);

    (4) The ability of the organization to provide an experienced staff with the requisite technical and trade experience to execute the proposal (15%);

    (5) The extent to which the proposal is targeted to a market in which the United States is generally competitive (17.5%);

    (6) The degree to which time is essential to addressing specific export barriers (5%); and

    (7) The ability of the applicant to provide a broad base of producer representation (12.5%).

    2. Review and Selection Process: FAS will review proposals for eligibility and will evaluate each proposal against the criteria referred to above. The purpose of this review is to identify meritorious proposals, recommend an appropriate funding level for each proposal based upon these factors, and submit the proposals and funding recommendations to the Deputy Administrator, Office of Trade Programs. FAS may, when appropriate, request the assistance of other U.S. government subject area experts in evaluating the merits of a proposal.

    F. Federal Award Administration Information

    1. Award Notices: FAS will notify each applicant in writing of the final disposition of the submitted application. FAS will send an approval letter and agreement to each approved applicant. The approval letter and agreement will specify the terms and conditions applicable to the project, including levels of funding, timelines for implementation, and written evaluation requirements.

    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: The agreements will incorporate the details of each project as approved by FAS. Each agreement will identify terms and conditions pursuant to which CCC will reimburse certain costs of each project. Agreements will also outline the responsibilities of the participant. Interested parties should review the TASC program regulations found at 7 CFR part 1487 in addition to this announcement. TASC program regulations are available at the following URL address: http://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/technical-assistance-specialty-crops-tasc. Hard copies may be obtained by contacting the Program Operations Division at (202) 720-4327.

    3. Reporting: TASC participants will be required to submit regular interim reports and a final performance report, each of which evaluate the TASC project using the performance measures presented in the approved proposal, as set forth in the written program agreement.

    G. Federal Awarding Agency Contact

    For additional information and assistance, contact the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture.

    Courier address: Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 720-4327, or by fax: (202) 720-9361, or by email: [email protected]

    Signed at Washington, DC on the 1st of April, 2015. Asif Chaudhry, Acting Administrator, Foreign Agricultural Service, and Vice President, Commodity Credit Corporation.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07934 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 3410-10-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Commodity Credit Corporation Notice of Funds Availability: Inviting Applications for the Emerging Markets Program SUMMARY:

    The Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) announces that it is inviting proposals for the 2016 Emerging Markets Program (EMP). The intended effect of this notice is to solicit applications from the private sector and from government agencies for fiscal year 2016 and to set out criteria for the award of funds under the program in October 2015. The EMP is administered by personnel of the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS).

    DATES:

    To be considered for funding, applications must be received by 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015. Any applications received after this time will be considered only if funds are still available.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Entities wishing to apply for funding assistance should contact the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service by courier address: Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 720-4327, or by fax: (202) 720-9361, or by email: [email protected] Information is also available on the Foreign Agricultural Service Web site at http://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/emerging-markets-program-emp.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: A. Funding Opportunity Description

    Announcement Type: New.

    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 10.603. Authority:

    The EMP is authorized by section 1542(d)(1) of the Food, Agriculture, Conservation and Trade Act of 1990 (The Act), as amended. The EMP regulations appear at 7 CFR part 1486.

    1. Purpose. The EMP assists U.S. entities in developing, maintaining, or expanding exports of U.S. agricultural commodities and products by funding activities that improve emerging markets' food and rural business systems, including reducing potential trade barriers in such markets. The EMP is intended primarily to support export market development efforts of the private sector, but EMP resources may also be used to assist public organizations.

    All U.S. agricultural commodities, except tobacco, are eligible for consideration. Agricultural product(s) should be comprised of at least 50 percent U.S. origin content by weight, exclusive of added water, to be eligible for funding. Proposals that seek support for multiple commodities are also eligible. EMP funding may only be used to develop, maintain, or expand emerging markets for U.S. agricultural commodities and products through generic activities. EMP funding may not be used to support the export of another country's products to the United States, or to promote the development of a foreign economy as a primary objective.

    2. Appropriate Activities. All EMP projects must fall into at least one of the following four categories:

    (a) Assistance to teams consisting primarily of U.S. individuals expert in assessing the food and rural business systems of other countries. This type of EMP project must include all three of the following:

    • Conduct an assessment of the food and rural business system needs of an emerging market;

    • Make recommendations on measures necessary to enhance the effectiveness of these systems; and

    • Identify opportunities and projects to enhance the effectiveness of the emerging market's food and rural business systems.

    To be eligible, such proposals must clearly demonstrate that experts are primarily agricultural consultants, farmers, other persons from the private sector, and government officials, and that they have expertise in assessing the food and rural business systems of other countries.

    (b) Assistance to enable individuals from emerging markets to travel to the United States so that these individuals can, for the purpose of enhancing the food and rural business systems in their countries, become familiar with U.S. technology and agribusiness and rural enterprise operations by consulting with food and rural business system experts in the United States.

    (c) Assistance to enable U.S. agricultural producers and other individuals knowledgeable in agricultural and agribusiness matters to travel to emerging markets to assist in transferring their knowledge and expertise to entities in emerging markets. Such travel must be to emerging markets. Travel to developed markets is not eligible under the program even if the traveler's targeted market is an emerging market.

    (d) Technical assistance to implement the recommendations, projects, and/or opportunities identified under 2(a) above. Technical assistance that does not implement the recommendations, projects, and/or opportunities identified by assistance under 2(a) above is not eligible under the EMP.

    Proposals that do not fall into one or more of the four categories above, regardless of previous guidance provided regarding the EMP, are not eligible for consideration under the program.

    EMP funds may not be used to support normal operating costs of individual organizations, nor as a source to recover pre-award costs or prior expenses from previous or ongoing projects. Proposals that counter national strategies or duplicate activities planned or already underway by U.S. non-profit agricultural commodity or trade associations (“cooperators”) will not be considered. Other ineligible expenditures include: Branded product promotions (e.g., in-store, restaurant advertising, labeling, etc.); advertising, administrative, and operational expenses for trade shows; Web site development; equipment purchases; and the preparation and printing of brochures, flyers, and posters (except in connection with specific technical assistance activities such as training seminars). For a more complete description of ineligible expenditures, please refer to the EMP regulations.

    3. Eligible Markets. The Act defines an emerging market as any country that the Secretary of Agriculture determines:

    (a) Is taking steps toward developing a market-oriented economy through the food, agriculture, or rural business sectors of the economy of the country; and

    (b) Has the potential to provide a viable and significant market for U.S. agricultural commodities or products of U.S. agricultural commodities.

    Because EMP funds are limited and the range of potential emerging market countries is worldwide, consideration will be given only to proposals that target countries or regional groups with per capita income of less than $12,745 (the current ceiling on upper middle income economies as determined by the World Bank [World Development Indicators; July 2014, http://siteresources.worldbank.org/DATASTATISTICS/Resources/CLASS.XLS]) and populations of greater than 1 million.

    Income limits and their calculation can change from year to year with the result that a given country may qualify under the legislative and administrative criteria one year, but not the next. Therefore, CCC has not established a fixed list of emerging market countries.

    A few countries technically qualify as emerging markets but may require a separate determination before funding can be considered because of political sensitivities.

    B. Award Information

    In general, and subject to the availability of funding, all qualified proposals received before the application deadline will compete for EMP funding.

    The applicants' willingness to contribute resources, including cash, goods and services, will be a critical factor in determining which proposals are funded under the EMP. Each proposal will also be judged on the potential benefits to the industry represented by the applicant and the degree to which the proposal demonstrates industry support.

    The limited funds and the range of eligible emerging markets worldwide generally preclude CCC from approving large budgets for individual projects. While there is no minimum or maximum amount set for EMP-funded projects, most projects are funded at a level of less than $500,000 and for a duration of approximately one year. Private entities may submit multi-year proposals requesting higher levels of funding that may be considered in the context of a detailed strategic implementation plan. Funding in such cases is generally limited to three years and provided one year at a time with commitments beyond the first year subject to interim evaluations and funding availability. Government entities are not eligible for multi-year funding.

    Funding for successful proposals will be provided through specific agreements. The CCC, through FAS, will be kept informed of the implementation of approved projects through the requirement to provide interim progress reports and final performance reports. Changes in the original project timelines and adjustments within project budgets must be approved in advance by FAS.

    Note:

    EMP funds awarded to government agencies must be expended or otherwise obligated by close of business, September 30, 2016.

    C. Eligibility and Qualification Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: Any U.S. private or government entity (e.g., universities, non-profit trade associations, agricultural cooperatives, state regional trade groups (SRTGs), state departments of agriculture, federal agencies, profit-making entities, and consulting businesses) with a demonstrated role or interest in exports of U.S. agricultural commodities or products may apply to the program. Proposals from research and consulting organizations will be considered if they provide evidence of substantial participation by and financial support from the U.S. industry. For-profit entities are also eligible but may not use program funds to conduct private business, promote private self-interests, supplement the costs of normal sales activities or promote their own products or services beyond specific uses approved by CCC in a given project.

    U.S. export market development cooperators and SRTGs may seek funding to address priority, market specific issues and to undertake activities not suitable for funding under other CCC market development programs, e.g., the Foreign Market Development Cooperator (Cooperator) Program and the Market Access Program (MAP). Foreign organizations, whether government or private, may participate as third parties in activities carried out by U.S. organizations, but are not eligible for funding assistance from the program.

    2. Cost Sharing: No private sector proposal will be considered without the element of cost-share from the applicant and/or U.S. partners. The EMP is intended to complement, not supplant, the efforts of the U.S. private sector. There is no minimum or maximum amount of cost-share, though the range in recent successful proposals has been between 35 and 75 percent. The degree of commitment to a proposed project, represented by the amount and type of private funding, is one factor used in determining which proposals will be approved for funding. Cost-share may be actual cash invested or professional time of staff assigned to the project. Proposals for which private industry is willing to commit cash, rather than in-kind contributions, such as staff resources, will be given priority consideration.

    Cost-sharing is not required for proposals from government agencies, but is mandatory for all other eligible entities, even when they may be party to a joint proposal with a government agency. Contributions from USDA or other government agencies or programs may not be counted toward the stated cost-share requirement of other applicants. Similarly, contributions from foreign (non-U.S.) organizations may not be counted toward the cost-share requirement, but may be counted in the total cost of the project.

    3. Other: Proposals should include a justification for funding assistance from the program—an explanation as to what specifically could not be accomplished without Federal funding assistance and why the participating organization(s) would be unlikely to carry out the project without such assistance. Applicants may submit more than one proposal.

    D. Application and Submission Information

    1. Address to Request Application Package: EMP applicants have the opportunity to utilize the Unified Export Strategy (UES) application process, an online system that provides a means for interested applicants to submit a consolidated and strategically coordinated single proposal that incorporates funding requests for any or all of the market development programs administered by FAS.

    Applicants are strongly encouraged to submit their applications to FAS through the UES application Internet Web site. The Internet-based format reduces paperwork and expedites FAS' processing and review cycle. Applicants planning to use the on-line UES system must contact the Program Operations Division to obtain site access information. The Internet-based application is located at the following URL address: https://www.fas.usda.gov/ues/webapp/.

    Although FAS highly recommends applying via the Internet-based application, applicants also have the option of submitting an electronic version to FAS at [email protected]

    2. Content and Form of Application Submission: To be considered for the EMP, an applicant must submit to FAS information required by this Notice of Funds Availability and the EMP regulations at 7 CFR part 1486. EMP regulations and additional information are available at the following URL address: http://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/emerging-markets-program-emp.

    In addition, in accordance with 2 CFR part 25, each entity that applies to the EMP and does not qualify for an exemption under 2 CFR § 25.110 must:

    (i) Provide a valid DUNS number in each application or plan it submits to CCC;

    (ii) Be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) prior to submitting an application or plan; and

    (iii) Continue to maintain an active SAM registration with current information at all times during which it has an active Federal award or an application or plan under consideration by CCC.

    Similarly, in accordance with 2 CFR part 170, each entity that applies to the EMP and does not qualify for an exception under 2 CFR § 170.110(b) must ensure it has the necessary processes and systems in place to comply with the applicable reporting requirements of 2 CFR part 170 should it receive EMP funding.

    Applications should be no longer than ten (10) pages and include the following information:

    (a) Date of proposal;

    (b) Name of organization submitting proposal;

    (c) Organization address, telephone and fax numbers;

    (d) Tax ID number;

    (e) DUNS number;

    (f) Primary contact person;

    (g) Full title of proposal;

    (h) Target market(s);

    (i) Specific description of activity/activities to be undertaken;

    (j) Clear demonstration that successful implementation will benefit an emerging market's food and rural business system and/or reduce potential trade barriers, and will benefit a particular industry as a whole, not just the applicant(s);

    (k) Current conditions in the target market(s) affecting the intended commodity or product;

    (l) Description of problem(s) (i.e., constraint(s)) to be addressed by the project, such as the need to assess and enhance food and rural business systems of the emerging market, lack of awareness by foreign officials of U.S. technology and business practices, impediments (infrastructure, financing, regulatory or other non-tariff barriers) to the effectiveness of the emerging market's food and rural business systems previously identified by an EMP project that are to be implemented by the applicant, etc.;

    (m) Project objectives;

    (n) Performance measures: Benchmarks for quantifying progress in meeting the objectives;

    (o) Rationale: Explanation of the underlying reasons for the project proposal and its approach, the anticipated benefits, and any additional pertinent analysis;

    (p) Explanation as to what specifically could not be accomplished without Federal funding assistance and why the participating organization(s) would be unlikely to carry out the project without such assistance;

    (q) Timeline(s) for implementation of activity, including start and end dates;

    (r) Information on whether similar activities are or have previously been funded with USDA resources in the target country or countries (e.g., under MAP and/or Cooperator programs);

    (s) Detailed line item activity budget:

    • Cost items should be allocated separately to each participating organization; and

    • Expense items constituting a proposed activity's overall budget (e.g., salaries, travel expenses, consultant fees, administrative costs, etc.), with a line item cost for each, should be listed, clearly indicating:

    (1) Which items are to be covered by EMP funding;

    (2) Which by the participating U.S. organization(s); and

    (3) Which by foreign third parties (if applicable).

    Cost items for individual consultant fees should show calculation of daily rate and number of days. Cost items for travel expenses should show number of trips, destinations, cost, and objective for each trip; and

    (t) Qualifications of applicant(s) should be included as an attachment.

    3. Funding Restrictions: Certain types of expenses are not eligible for reimbursement by the program, and there are limits on other categories of expenses, such as indirect overhead charges, travel expenses, and consulting fees. CCC will also not reimburse unreasonable expenditures or expenditures made prior to approval of a proposal. Full details of the funding restrictions are available in the EMP regulations.

    4. Submission Dates and Times: EMP proposals are reviewed on a rolling basis during the fiscal year as long as EMP funding is available as set forth below:

    • Proposals received by, but not later than, 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015, will be considered for funding with other proposals received by that date;

    • Proposals not approved for funding during the review period will be reconsidered for funding after the review period only if the applicant specifically requests such reconsideration in writing, and only if funding remains available;

    • Proposals received after 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015, will be considered in the order received for funding only if funding remains available.

    5. Other Submission Requirements: All Internet-based applications must be properly submitted by 5 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015, in order to be considered for funding; late submissions received after the deadline will be considered only if funding remains available. All applications submitted by email must be received by 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015, at [email protected] in order to receive the same consideration.

    E. Application Review Information

    Evaluation criteria. FAS will consider a number of factors when reviewing proposals, including:

    • Appropriateness of the activity, including the ability of the applicant to provide an experienced U.S.-based staff with knowledge and expertise to ensure adequate development, supervision, and execution of the proposed project; the entity's willingness to contribute resources, including cash and goods and services of the U.S. industry, with greater weight given to cash contributions (for private sector proposals only); and the conditions or constraints affecting the level of U.S. exports and market share for the agricultural commodity/product (30%);

    • Market Impact, including the degree to which the proposed project is likely to contribute to the development, maintenance, or expansion of U.S. agricultural exports to emerging markets; and demonstration of how a proposed project will benefit a particular industry as a whole; and the quality of the project's proposed performance measures (50%); and the

    • Completeness and viability of the proposal, along with past program results and evaluations, if applicable (20%).

    Please see 7 CFR part 1486 for additional evaluation criteria.

    2. Review and Selection Process: All applications undergo a multi-phase review within FAS, by appropriate FAS field offices, and, as needed, by the private sector Advisory Committee on Emerging Markets to determine the qualifications, quality, appropriateness of projects, and reasonableness of project budgets.

    F. Federal Award Administration Information

    1. Award Notices: FAS will notify each applicant in writing of the final disposition of the submitted application. FAS will send an approval letter and project agreement to each approved applicant. The approval letter and agreement will specify the terms and conditions applicable to the project, including the levels of EMP funding and cost-share contribution requirements.

    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: Interested parties should review the EMP regulations, which are available at the following URL address: http://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/emerging-markets-program-emp.

    3. Reporting. Quarterly progress reports for all programs one year or longer in duration are required. Projects of less than one year generally require a mid-term progress report. Final performance reports are due 90 days after completion of each project. Content requirements for both types of reports are contained in the Project Agreement. Final financial reports are also due 90 days after completion of each project as attachments to the final reports. Please see 7 CFR part 1486 for additional reporting requirements.

    G. Federal Awarding Agency Contact(s)

    For additional information and assistance, contact the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture.

    Courier address: Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 720-4327, or by fax: (202) 720-9361, or by email: [email protected]

    Signed at Washington, DC on 1st day of April, 2015. Asif Chaudhry, Acting Administrator, Foreign Agricultural Service and Vice President, Commodity Credit Corporation.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07940 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 3410-10-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Commodity Credit Corporation Notice of Funds Availability: Inviting Applications for the Quality Samples Program

    Announcement Type: New.

    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 10.605.

    SUMMARY:

    The Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) announces it is inviting proposals for the 2016 Quality Samples Program (QSP). The intended effect of this notice is to solicit applications from eligible applicants for fiscal year 2016 and to set out the criteria for the award of funds under the program in October 2015. QSP is administered by personnel of the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS).

    DATES:

    To be considered for funding, applications must be received by 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015. Any applications received after this time will be considered only if funds are still available.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Entities wishing to apply for funding assistance should contact the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service by courier address: Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 720-4327, or by fax: (202) 720-9361, or by email: [email protected] Information is also available on the FAS Web site at http://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/quality-samples-program-qsp.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: A. Funding Opportunity Description

    Authority: QSP is authorized under Section 5(f) of the CCC Charter Act, 15 U.S.C. 714c(f).

    Purpose: QSP is designed to encourage the development and expansion of export markets for U.S. agricultural commodities by assisting U.S. entities in providing commodity samples to potential foreign importers to promote a better understanding and appreciation for the high quality of U.S. agricultural commodities.

    QSP participants will be responsible for procuring (or arranging for the procurement of) commodity samples, exporting the samples, and providing the on-site technical assistance necessary to facilitate successful use of the samples by importers. Participants that are funded under this announcement may seek reimbursement from QSP for the sample purchase price, the cost of transporting the samples domestically to the port of export, and then to the foreign port or point of entry. Transportation costs from the foreign port or point of entry to the final destination will not be eligible for reimbursement. CCC will not reimburse the costs incidental to purchasing and transporting samples, for example, inspection or documentation fees. Although providing technical assistance is required for all projects, QSP will not reimburse the costs of providing technical assistance. A QSP participant will be reimbursed after CCC reviews its reimbursement claim and determines that the claim is complete.

    General Scope of QSP Projects: QSP projects are the activities undertaken by a QSP participant to provide an appropriate sample of a U.S. agricultural commodity to a foreign importer, or a group of foreign importers, in a given market. The purpose of the project is to provide information to an appropriate target audience regarding the attributes, characteristics, and proper use of the U.S. commodity. A QSP project addresses a single market/commodity combination.

    As a general matter, QSP projects should conform to the following guidelines:

    • Projects should benefit the represented U.S. industry and not a specific company or brand;

    • Projects should develop a new market for a U.S. product, promote a new U.S. product, or promote a new use for a U.S. product, rather than promote the substitution of one established U.S. product for another;

    • Sample commodities provided under a QSP project must be in sufficient supply and available on a commercial basis;

    • The QSP project must either subject the commodity sample to further processing or substantial transformation in the importing country, or the sample must be used in technical seminars in the importing country designed to demonstrate to an appropriate target audience the proper preparation or use of the sample in the creation of an end product;

    • Samples provided in a QSP project shall not be directly used as part of a retail promotion or supplied directly to consumers. However, the end product, that is, the product resulting from further processing, substantial transformation, or a technical seminar, may be provided to end-use consumers to demonstrate to importers consumer preference for that end product; and

    • Samples shall be in quantities less than a typical commercial sale and limited to the amount sufficient to achieve the project goal (e.g., not more than a full commercial mill run in the destination country).

    • Projects should be completed within one year of CCC approval.

    QSP projects shall target foreign importers and audiences who:

    • Have not previously purchased the U.S. commodity that will be transported under QSP;

    • Are unfamiliar with the variety, quality attribute, or end-use characteristic of the U.S. commodity;

    • Have been unsuccessful in previous attempts to import, process, and market the U.S. commodity (e.g., because of improper specification, blending, formulation, sanitary, or phytosanitary issues);

    • Are interested in testing or demonstrating the benefits of the U.S. commodity; or

    • Need technical assistance in processing or using the U.S. commodity.

    B. Award Information

    Under this announcement, the number of projects per participant will not be limited. However, individual projects will be limited to $75,000 of QSP reimbursement. Projects comprised of technical preparation seminars, that is, projects that do not include further processing or substantial transformation, will be limited to $15,000 of QSP reimbursement as these projects require smaller samples. Financial assistance will be made available on a reimbursement basis only; cash advances will not be made available to any QSP participant.

    All proposals will be reviewed against the evaluation criteria contained herein and funds will be awarded on a competitive basis. Funding for successful proposals will be provided through specific agreements between the applicant and CCC subject to the availability of funding. These agreements will incorporate the proposal as approved by FAS. FAS must approve in advance any subsequent changes to the project.

    C. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: Any United States private or government entity with a demonstrated role or interest in exporting U.S. agricultural commodities may apply to the program. Government organizations consist of Federal, State, and local agencies. Private organizations include non-profit trade associations, universities, agricultural cooperatives, state regional trade groups, and profit-making entities.

    2. Cost Sharing: FAS considers the applicant's willingness to contribute resources, including cash, goods, and services of the U.S. industry and foreign third parties, when determining which proposals to approve for funding.

    3. Proposals should include a justification for funding assistance from the program—an explanation as to what specifically could not be accomplished without Federal funding assistance and why the participating organization(s) would be unlikely to carry out the project without such assistance. Applicants may submit more than one proposal.

    D. Application and Submission Information

    1. Address to Request Application Package: Organizations are strongly encouraged to submit their QSP applications to FAS through the Uniform Export Strategy (UES) application Internet Web site. The UES allows applicants to submit a single consolidated and strategically coordinated proposal that incorporates requests for funding and recommendations for virtually all of the FAS marketing programs, financial assistance programs, and market access programs. The suggested UES format encourages applicants to examine the constraints or barriers to trade that they face, identify activities that would help overcome such impediments, consider the entire pool of complementary marketing tools and program resources, and establish realistic export goals.

    Applicants planning to use the Internet-based system must contact the FAS/Program Operations Division to obtain Web site access information. The Internet-based application may be found at the following URL address: https://www.fas.usda.gov/ues/webapp/.

    Although FAS highly recommends applying via the Internet-based application, as this format virtually eliminates paperwork and expedites the FAS processing and review cycle, applicants also have the option of submitting an electronic version of their application to FAS at [email protected]

    2. Content and Form of Application Submission: To be considered for QSP, an applicant must submit to FAS information detailed in this notice.

    In addition, in accordance with 2 CFR part 25, each entity that applies to QSP and does not qualify for an exemption under 2 CFR 25.110 must:

    (i) Provide a valid DUNS number in each application or plan it submits to CCC;

    (ii) Be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) prior to submitting an application or plan; and

    (iii) Continue to maintain an active SAM registration with current information at all times during which it has an active Federal award or an application or plan under consideration by CCC.

    Similarly, in accordance with 2 CFR part 170, each entity that applies to the QSP and does not qualify for an exception under 2 CFR 170.110(b) must ensure it has the necessary processes and systems in place to comply with the applicable reporting requirements of 2 CFR part 170 should it receive QSP funding.

    Incomplete applications and applications that do not otherwise conform to this announcement will not be accepted for review.

    Proposals should contain, at a minimum, the following:

    (a) Organizational information, including:

    • Organization's name, address, Chief Executive Officer (or designee), Federal Tax Identification Number (TIN), and DUNS number;

    • Type of organization;

    • Name, telephone number, fax number, and email address of the primary contact person;

    • A description of the organization and its membership;

    • A description of the organization's prior export promotion experience; and

    • A description of the organization's experience in implementing an appropriate trade/technical assistance component;

    (b) Market information, including:

    • An assessment of the market;

    • A long-term strategy in the market; and

    • U.S. export value/volume and market share (historic and goals) for 2009-2015;

    (c) Project information, including:

    • A brief project title;

    • Amount of funding requested;

    • A brief description of the specific market development trade constraint or opportunity to be addressed by the project, performance measures for the years 2016-2018, which will be used to measure the effectiveness of the project, a benchmark performance measure for 2014, the viability of long-term sales to this market, the goals of the project, and the expected benefits to the represented industry;

    • A description of the activities planned to address the constraint or opportunity, including how the sample will be used in the end-use performance trial, the attributes of the sample to be demonstrated and its end-use benefit, and details of the trade/technical servicing component (including who will provide and who will fund this component);

    • A sample description (i.e., commodity, quantity, quality, type, and grade), including a justification for selecting a sample with such characteristics (this justification should explain in detail why the project could not be effective with a smaller sample);

    • An itemized list of all estimated costs associated with the project for which reimbursement will be sought;

    • Beginning and end dates for the proposed project;

    • The importer's role in the project regarding handling and processing the commodity sample; and

    • Explanation as to what specifically could not be accomplished without Federal funding assistance and why the participating organization(s) would be unlikely to carry out the project without such assistance;

    (d) Information indicating all funding sources and amounts to be contributed by each entity that will supplement implementation of the proposed project. This may include the organization that submitted the proposal, private industry entities, host governments, foreign third parties, CCC, FAS, or other Federal agencies. Contributed resources may include cash, goods or services.

    3. Submission Dates and Times: QSP funding is reviewed on a rolling basis during the fiscal year as long as remaining QSP funding is available as set forth below:

    • Proposals received by, but not later than, 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015, will be considered for funding with other proposals received by that date;

    • Proposals not approved for funding during this review period will be reconsidered for funding after the review period only if the applicant specifically requests such reconsideration in writing, and only if funding remains available;

    • Proposals received after 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015, will be considered in the order received for funding only if funding remains available.

    4. Other Submission Requirements: All Internet-based applications must be properly submitted by 5 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015, in order to be considered for funding; late submissions received after the deadline will be considered only if funding remains available. All applications submitted by email must be received by 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015, at [email protected] in order to receive the same consideration.

    5. Funding Restrictions: Proposals that request more than $75,000 of CCC funding for individual projects will not be considered. Projects comprised of technical preparation seminars will be limited to $15,000 in QSP funding. CCC will not reimburse expenditures made prior to approval of a proposal or unreasonable expenditures.

    E. Application Review Information

    1. Criteria and Review Process: Following is a description of the FAS process for reviewing applications and the criteria for allocating available QSP funds.

    FAS will use the following criteria in evaluating proposals:

    • The ability of the organization to provide an experienced staff with the requisite technical and trade experience to execute the proposal;

    • The extent to which the proposal is targeted to a market in which the United States is generally competitive;

    • The potential for expanding commercial sales in the proposed market;

    • The nature of the specific market constraint or opportunity involved and how well it is addressed by the proposal;

    • The extent to which the importer's contribution in terms of handling and processing enhances the potential outcome of the project;

    • The amount of reimbursement requested and the organization's willingness to contribute resources, including cash, goods and services of the U.S. industry, and foreign third parties; and

    • How well the proposed technical assistance component assures that performance trials will effectively demonstrate the intended end-use benefit.

    Proposals will be evaluated by the Commodity Branch offices in the FAS' Cooperator Programs Division. The Commodity Branches will review each proposal against the factors described above. The purpose of this review is to identify meritorious proposals, recommend an appropriate funding level for each proposal based upon these factors, and submit proposals and funding recommendations to the Deputy Administrator, Office of Trade Programs.

    2. Anticipated Announcement Date: Announcements of funding decisions for QSP are anticipated during October 2015.

    F. Federal Award Administration Information

    1. Award Notices: FAS will notify each applicant in writing of the final disposition of the submitted application. FAS will send an approval letter and agreement to each approved applicant. The approval letter and agreement will specify the terms and conditions applicable to the project, including the levels of QSP funding, and any cost-share contribution requirements.

    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: The agreements will incorporate the details of each project as approved by FAS. Each agreement will identify terms and conditions pursuant to which CCC will reimburse certain costs of each project. Agreements will also outline the responsibilities of the participant, including, but not limited to, procurement (or arranging for procurement) of the commodity sample at a fair market price, arranging for transportation of the commodity sample within the time limit specified in the agreement (organizations should endeavor to ship commodities within 6 months of the effective date of the agreement), compliance with cargo preference requirements (shipment on United States flag vessels, as required), compliance with the Fly America Act requirements (shipment on United States air carriers, as required), timely and effective implementation of technical assistance, and submission of a written evaluation report within 90 days of expiration or termination of the agreement.

    QSP projects are subject to review and verification by FAS' Compliance, Security and Emergency Planning Division. Upon request, a QSP participant shall provide to CCC the original documents that support the participant's reimbursement claims. CCC may deny a claim for reimbursement if the claim is not supported by adequate documentation.

    3. Reporting: A written evaluation report must be submitted within 90 days of the expiration or termination of each participant's QSP agreement. Evaluation reports should address all performance measures that were presented in the proposal.

    G. Federal Agency Contact(s)

    For additional information and assistance, contact the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture.

    Courier address: Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 720-4327, or by fax: (202) 720-9361, or by email: [email protected]

    Signed at Washington, DC on the 1 st of April, 2015. Asif Chaudhry, Acting Administrator, Foreign Agricultural Service, and Vice President, Commodity Credit Corporation.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07935 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 3410-10-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Commodity Credit Corporation Notice of Funds Availability: Inviting Applications for the Foreign Market Development Cooperator Program SUMMARY:

    The Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) announces that it is inviting proposals for the 2016 Foreign Market Development Cooperator (Cooperator) program. The intended effect of this notice is to solicit applications from eligible applicants for fiscal year 2016 and to set out criteria for the award of funds under the program in October 2015. The Cooperator program is administered by personnel of the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS).

    DATES:

    All applications must be received by 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015. Applications received after this date will not be considered.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Entities wishing to apply for funding assistance should contact the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service by courier address: Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 720-4327, or by fax: (202) 720-9361, or by email: [email protected] Information is also available on the FAS Web site at http://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/foreign-market-development-program-fmd.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: A. Funding Opportunity Description

    Announcement Type: New.

    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 10.600.

    Authority: The Cooperator program is authorized by title VII of the Agricultural Trade Act of 1978, as amended. Cooperator program regulations appear at 7 CFR part 1484.

    Purpose: The Cooperator program is designed to create, expand, and maintain foreign markets for U.S. agricultural commodities and products through cost-share assistance. Financial assistance under the Cooperator program will be made available on a competitive basis and applications will be reviewed against the evaluation criteria contained herein and in the Cooperator program regulations. All U.S. agricultural commodities, except tobacco, are eligible for consideration.

    FAS allocates funds in a manner that effectively supports the strategic decision-making initiatives of the Government Performance and Results Act (GPRA) of 1993. In deciding whether a proposed project will contribute to the effective creation, expansion, or maintenance of foreign markets, FAS considers whether the applicant provides a clear, long-term agricultural trade strategy and a program effectiveness time line against which results can be measured at specific intervals using quantifiable product or country goals. FAS also considers the extent to which a proposed project targets markets with the greatest growth potential. These factors are part of the FAS resource allocation strategy to fund applicants who can demonstrate performance and address the objectives of the GPRA.

    B. Award Information

    Under the Cooperator program, and subject to the availability of funding, FAS enters into agreements with eligible nonprofit U.S. trade organizations to share the cost of certain overseas marketing and promotion activities. Funding priority is given to organizations that have the broadest possible producer representation of the commodity being promoted and that are nationwide in membership and scope. Cooperators may receive assistance only for generic activities that do not involve promotions targeted directly to consumers. The program generally operates on a reimbursement basis.

    C. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: To participate in the Cooperator program, an applicant must be a nonprofit U.S. agricultural trade organization.

    2. Cost Sharing: To participate in the Cooperator program, an applicant must agree to contribute resources to its proposed promotional activities. The Cooperator program is intended to supplement, not supplant, the efforts of the U.S. private sector. The contribution must be at least 50 percent of the value of resources provided by CCC for activities conducted under the project agreement.

    The degree of commitment of an applicant to the promotional strategies contained in its application, as represented by the agreed cost-share contributions specified therein, is considered by FAS when determining which applications will be approved for funding. Cost-share may be actual cash invested or in-kind contributions, such as professional staff time spent on design and execution of activities. The Cooperator program regulations, including sections 1484.50 and 1484.51, provide detailed discussion of eligible and ineligible cost-share contributions.

    3. Other: Applications should include a justification for funding assistance from the program—an explanation as to what specifically could not be accomplished without federal funding assistance and why participating organization(s) are unlikely to carry out the project without such assistance.

    D. Application and Submission Information

    1. Address to Request Application Package: Organizations are encouraged to submit their FMD applications to the FAS through the Unified Export Strategy (UES) application Internet Web site. The UES allows applicants to submit a single consolidated and strategically coordinated proposal that incorporates requests for funding and recommendations for virtually all of the FAS marketing programs, financial assistance programs, and market access programs. The suggested UES format encourages applicants to examine the constraints or barriers to trade faced, identify activities that would help overcome such impediments, consider the entire pool of complementary marketing tools and program resources, and establish realistic export goals.

    Applicants planning to use the Internet-based system must contact the FAS/Program Operations Division to obtain site access information. The Internet-based application may be found at the following URL address: https://www.fas.usda.gov/ues/webapp/.

    FAS highly recommends applying via the Internet-based application as this format virtually eliminates paperwork and expedites the FAS processing and review cycle. However, applicants also have the option of submitting an electronic version of their application to FAS at [email protected]

    2. Content and Form of Application Submission: To be considered for the Cooperator program, an applicant must submit to FAS information required by the Cooperator program regulations in section 1484.20.

    In addition, in accordance with 2 CFR part 25, each entity that applies to the Cooperator program and does not qualify for an exemption under 2 CFR 25.110 must:

    (i) Provide a valid DUNS number in each application or plan it submits to CCC;

    (ii) Be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) prior to submitting an application or plan; and

    (iii) Continue to maintain an active SAM registration with current information at all times during which it has an active Federal award or an application or plan under consideration by CCC.

    Similarly, in accordance with 2 CFR part 170, each entity that applies to the Cooperator program and does not qualify for an exception under 2 CFR 170.110(b) must ensure it has the necessary processes and systems in place to comply with the applicable reporting requirements of 2 CFR part 170 should it receive funding under the Cooperator program. Incomplete applications and applications that do not otherwise conform to this announcement or the Cooperator program regulations will not be accepted for review.

    FAS administers various other agricultural export assistance programs, including the Market Access Program (MAP), the Emerging Markets Program, the Quality Samples Program, and the Technical Assistance for Specialty Crops program. Any organization that is not interested in applying for the Cooperator program but would like to request assistance through one of the other programs mentioned should contact the Program Operations Division.

    3. Submission Dates and Times: All applications must be received by 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015. All Cooperator program applicants, regardless of the method of submitting an application, also must submit by the application deadline, an original signed certification statement as specified in 7 CFR 1484.20(a)(14) to the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250. Applications or certifications received after this date will not be considered.

    4. Funding Restrictions: Certain types of expenses are not eligible for reimbursement by the program, and there are limits on other categories of expenses. CCC also will not reimburse unreasonable expenditures or expenditures made prior to approval. Full details are available in the Cooperator program regulations, including sections 1484.54 and 1484.55.

    E. Application Review Information

    1. Criteria and Review Process: Following is a description of the FAS process for reviewing applications and the criteria for allocating available Cooperator program funds.

    (1) Phase 1—Sufficiency Review and FAS Divisional Review

    Applications received by the closing date will be reviewed by FAS to determine the eligibility of the applicants and the completeness of the applications. These requirements appear in sections 1484.14 and 1484.20 of the Cooperator program regulations as well as in this Notice. Applications that meet the requirements then will be further evaluated by the appropriate Commodity Branch office of the FAS/Cooperator Programs Division. The Commodity Branch will review each application against the criteria listed in section 1484.21 of the Cooperator program regulations. The purpose of this review is to identify meritorious proposals. The Commodity Branch then recommends an appropriate funding level for each approved application for consideration by the Office of the Deputy Administrator, Office of Trade Programs.

    (2) Phase 2—Competitive Review

    Meritorious applications are passed on to the Office of the Deputy Administrator, Office of Trade Programs, for the purpose of allocating available funds among those applicants. Applicants will compete for funds on the basis of the following allocation criteria as appropriate (the number in parentheses represents a percentage weight factor):

    (a) Contribution Level (40)

    • The applicant's 6-year average share (2011-2016) of all contributions under the Cooperator program (contributions may include cash and goods and services provided by U.S. entities in support of foreign market development activities) compared to;

    • The applicant's 6-year average share (2011-2016) of the funding level for all Cooperator program participants.

    (b) Past Export Performance (20)

    • The 6-year average share (2010-2015) of the value of exports promoted by the applicant compared to;

    • The applicant's 6-year average share (2010-2015) of the funding level for all Cooperator participants plus, for those groups participating in the MAP program, a 6-year average share (2010-2015) of all MAP budgets.

    (c) Past Demand Expansion Performance (20)

    • The 6-year average share (2010-2015) of the total value of world trade of the commodities promoted by the applicant compared to;

    • The applicant's 6-year average share (2010-2015) of all Cooperator program expenditures plus, for those groups participating in the MAP program, a 6-year average share (2010-2015) of all MAP expenditures.

    (d) Future Demand Expansion Goals (10)

    • The projected total dollar value of world trade of the commodities being promoted by the applicant for the year 2021 compared to;

    • The applicant's requested funding level.

    (e) Accuracy of Past Demand Expansion Projections (10)

    • The actual dollar value share of world trade of the commodities being promoted by the applicant for the year 2014 compared to;

    • The applicant's past projected share of world trade of the commodities being promoted by the applicant for the year 2014, as specified in the 2011 Cooperator program application.

    The Commodity Branches' recommended funding levels for each applicant are converted to percentages of the total Cooperator program funds available and then multiplied by each weight factor to determine the amount of funds allocated to each applicant.

    2. Anticipated Announcement Date: Announcements of funding decisions for the Cooperator program are anticipated during October 2015.

    F. Federal Award Administration Information

    1. Award Notices: FAS will notify each applicant in writing of the final disposition of its application. FAS will send an approval letter and project agreement to each approved applicant. The approval letter and project agreement will specify the terms and conditions applicable to the project, including the levels of Cooperator program funding, and cost-share contribution requirements.

    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: Interested parties should review the Cooperator program regulations, which are available at the following URL address: http://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/foreign-market-development-program-fmd. Hard copies may be obtained by contacting the Program Operations Division.

    3. Reporting: FAS requires various reports and evaluations from Cooperators. Reporting requirements are detailed in the Cooperator program regulations in sections 1484.53, 1484.70, and 1484.72.

    G. Federal Agency Contact(s)

    For additional information and assistance, contact the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture.

    Courier address: Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 720-4327, or by fax: (202) 720-9361, or by email: [email protected]

    Signed at Washington, DC, on the 1st of April 2015. Asif Chaudhry, Administrator, Foreign Agricultural Service, and Vice President, Commodity Credit Corporation.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07943 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 3410-10-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Commodity Credit Corporation Notice of Funds Availability: Inviting Applications for the Market Access Program SUMMARY:

    The Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) announces that it is inviting proposals for the 2016 Market Access Program (MAP). The intended effect of this notice is to solicit applications from eligible applicants for fiscal year 2016 and to set out criteria for the award of funds under the program in October 2015. The MAP is administered by personnel of the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS).

    DATES:

    All applications must be received by 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015. Applications received after this date will not be considered.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Entities wishing to apply for funding assistance should contact the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service by courier address: Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 720-4327, or by fax: (202) 720-9361, or by email: [email protected] Information is also available on the FAS Web site at http://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/market-access-program-map.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: A. Funding Opportunity Description

    Announcement Type: New.

    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 10.601.

    Authority: The MAP is authorized under Section 203 of the Agricultural Trade Act of 1978, as amended. MAP regulations appear at 7 CFR part 1485.

    Purpose: The MAP is designed to create, expand, and maintain foreign markets for U.S. agricultural commodities and products through cost-share assistance. Financial assistance under the MAP will be made available on a competitive basis, and applications will be reviewed against the evaluation criteria contained herein and in the MAP regulations. All U.S. agricultural commodities, except tobacco, are eligible for consideration.

    FAS allocates funds in a manner that effectively supports the strategic decision-making initiatives of the Government Performance and Results Act (GPRA) of 1993. In deciding whether a proposed project will contribute to the effective creation, expansion, or maintenance of foreign markets, FAS considers whether the applicant provides a clear, long-term agricultural trade strategy and a program effectiveness time line against which results can be measured at specific intervals using quantifiable product or country goals. FAS also considers the extent to which a proposed project targets markets with the greatest growth potential. These factors are part of the FAS resource allocation strategy to fund applicants who can demonstrate performance and address the objectives of the GPRA.

    B. Award Information

    Under the MAP, and subject to the availability of funding, the CCC enters into agreements with eligible Participants to share the cost of certain overseas marketing and promotion activities. MAP Participants may receive assistance for generic or brand promotion activities. For generic activities, funding priority is given to organizations that have the broadest possible producer representation of the commodity being promoted and that are nationwide in membership and scope. Only non-profit U.S. agricultural trade organizations, nonprofit state regional trade groups (SRTGs), U.S. agricultural cooperatives, and State government agencies can participate directly in the brand program. The MAP generally operates on a reimbursement basis.

    C. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: To participate in the MAP, an applicant must be a nonprofit U.S. agricultural trade organization, a nonprofit SRTG, a U.S. agricultural cooperative, or a State government agency. A small-sized U.S. commercial entity may participate through a MAP Participant.

    2. Cost Sharing: To participate in the MAP, an applicant must agree to contribute resources to its proposed promotional activities. The MAP is intended to supplement, not supplant, the efforts of the U.S. private sector. In the case of generic promotion, the contribution must be at least 10 percent of the value of resources provided by CCC for such generic promotion. In the case of brand promotion, the contribution must be at least 50 percent of the total cost of such brand promotion.

    The degree of commitment of an applicant to the promotional strategies contained in its application, as represented by the agreed cost-share contributions specified therein, is considered by FAS when determining which applications will be approved for funding. Cost-share may be actual cash invested or in-kind contributions, such as professional staff time spent on design and execution of activities. The MAP regulations, in section 1485.16, provide detailed discussion of eligible and ineligible cost-share contributions.

    3. Other: Applications should include a justification for funding assistance from the program—an explanation as to what specifically could not be accomplished without federal funding assistance, and why participating organization(s) are unlikely to carry out the project without such assistance.

    D. Application and Submission Information

    1. Address to Request Application Package: Organizations are encouraged to submit their MAP applications to FAS through the Unified Export Strategy (UES) application Internet Web site. The UES allows interested applicants to submit a single consolidated and strategically coordinated proposal that incorporates requests for funding and recommendations for virtually all of the FAS marketing programs, financial assistance programs, and market access programs. The suggested UES format encourages applicants to examine the constraints or barriers to trade that they face, identify activities that would help overcome such impediments, consider the entire pool of complementary marketing tools and program resources, and establish realistic export goals. Applicants planning to use the Internet-based system must contact the FAS/Program Operations Division to obtain Web site access information. The Internet-based application may be found at the following URL address: https://www.fas.usda.gov/ues/webapp/.

    FAS highly recommends applying via the Internet-based application, as this format virtually eliminates paperwork and expedites the FAS processing and review cycle. However, applicants also have the option of submitting an electronic version of their application to FAS at [email protected]

    2. Content and Form of Application Submission: To be considered for the MAP, an applicant must submit to FAS information required by the MAP regulations in section 1485.13.

    In addition, in accordance with 2 CFR part 25, each entity that applies to MAP and does not qualify for an exemption under 2 CFR 25.110 must:

    (i) Provide a valid DUNS number in each application or plan it submits to CCC;

    (ii) Be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) prior to submitting an application or plan; and

    (iii) Continue to maintain an active SAM registration with current information at all times during which it has an active Federal award or an application or plan under consideration by CCC.

    Similarly, in accordance with 2 CFR part 170, each entity that applies to MAP and does not qualify for an exception under 2 CFR 170.110(b) must ensure it has the necessary processes and systems in place to comply with the applicable reporting requirements of 2 CFR part 170 should it receive MAP funding.

    Incomplete applications and applications that do not otherwise conform to this announcement and the MAP regulations will not be accepted for review.

    FAS administers various other agricultural export assistance programs including the Foreign Market Development Cooperator (Cooperator) program, the Emerging Markets Program, the Quality Samples Program, and the Technical Assistance for Specialty Crops program. Any organization that is not interested in applying for the MAP, but would like to request assistance through one of the other programs mentioned should contact the Program Operations Division.

    3. Submission Dates and Times: All applications must be received by 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time, June 8, 2015. All MAP applicants, regardless of the method of submitting an application, must also submit by the application deadline, an original signed certification statement as specified in 7 CFR 1485.13(a)(2)(i)(E) to the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250. Applications or certifications received after this date will not be considered.

    4. Funding Restrictions: Certain types of expenses are not eligible for reimbursement by the program, and there are limits on other categories of expenses. CCC also will not reimburse unreasonable expenditures or expenditures made prior to approval. Full details are available in the MAP regulations in section 1485.17.

    E. Application Review Information

    1. Criteria and Review Process: Following is a description of the FAS process for reviewing applications and the criteria for allocating available MAP funds.

    (1) Phase 1—Sufficiency Review and FAS Divisional Review

    Applications received by the closing date will be reviewed by FAS to determine the eligibility of the applicants and the completeness of the applications. These requirements appear in sections 1485.12 and 1485.13 of the MAP regulations. Applications that meet the requirements then will be further evaluated by the appropriate Commodity Branch office of the FAS/Cooperator Programs Division. The Commodity Branch will review each application against the criteria listed in section 1485.14(b) and (c) of the MAP regulations as well as in this Notice. The purpose of this review is to identify meritorious proposals and to recommend an appropriate funding level for each application based upon these criteria.

    (2) Phase 2—Competitive Review

    Meritorious applications then will be passed on to the Office of the Deputy Administrator, Office of Trade Programs, for the purpose of allocating available funds among the applicants. Applicants will compete for funds on the basis of the following allocation criteria as applicable (the number in parentheses represents a percentage weight factor):

    (a) Applicant's Contribution Level (40)

    • The applicant's 4-year average share (2013-2016) of all contributions under the MAP (cash and goods and services provided by U.S. entities in support of overseas marketing and promotion activities) compared to;

    • The applicant's 4-year average share (2013-2016) of the funding level for all MAP Participants.

    (b) Past Performance (30)

    • The 3-year average share (2012-2014) of the value of exports promoted by the applicant compared to;

    • The applicant's 2-year average share (2014-2015) of the funding level for all MAP Participants plus, for those groups participating in the Cooperator program, the 2-year average share (2014-2015) of all Cooperator program budgets.

    (c) Projected Export Goals (15)

    • The total dollar value of projected exports promoted by the applicant for 2016 compared to;

    • The applicant's requested funding level;

    (d) Accuracy of Past Projections (15)

    • Actual exports for 2014 as reported in the 2016 MAP application compared to;

    • Past projections of exports for 2014 as specified in the 2014 MAP application.

    The Commodity Branches' recommended funding levels for each applicant are converted to percentages of the total MAP funds available and then multiplied by each weight factor as described above to determine the amount of funds allocated to each applicant.

    2. Anticipated Announcement Date: Announcements of funding decisions for the MAP are anticipated during October 2015.

    F. Federal Award Administration Information

    1. Award Notices: FAS will notify each applicant in writing of the final disposition of its application. The FAS will send an approval letter and program agreement to each approved applicant. The approval letter and program agreement will specify the terms and conditions applicable to the project, including the levels of MAP funding and cost-share contribution requirements.

    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: Interested parties should review the MAP regulations, which are available at the following URL address: http://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/market-access-program-map. Hard copies may be obtained by contacting the Program Operations Division.

    3. Reporting: FAS requires various reports and evaluations from MAP Participants. Reporting requirements are detailed in the MAP regulations in section 1485.22 and 1485.23.

    G. Federal Agency Contact(s)

    For additional information and assistance, contact the Program Operations Division, Office of Trade Programs, Foreign Agricultural Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture.

    Courier address: Room 6512, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250, or by phone: (202) 720-4327, or by fax: (202) 720-9361, or by email: [email protected]

    Signed at Washington, DC, on the 1st of April 2015. Asif Chaudhry, Acting Administrator, Foreign Agricultural Service, and Vice President, Commodity Credit Corporation.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07941 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 3410-10-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Forest Service Information Collection; Community Forest and Open Space Program AGENCY:

    Forest Service, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice; request for comment.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Forest Service (FS) is seeking comments from all interested individuals and organizations on the extension with no revision of a currently approved information collection; Community Forest and Open Space Program.

    The Agency is in the process of a proposed rule revision that will include a new information collection request; when the revised rule is final, the Agency will merge the new information collection with this information collection.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received in writing on or before June 15, 2015 to be assured of consideration. Comments received after that date will be considered to the extent practicable.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments concerning this notice should be addressed to Maya Solomon, USDA Forest Service, Cooperative Forestry Staff, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Mailstop 1123, Washington, DC 20250. Comments may also be submitted electronically via email to [email protected] If comments are sent electronically, do not duplicate via regular mail.

    The public may inspect comments received at the USDA Forest Service, Yates Building, 1400 Independence Avenue, Washington, DC during normal business hours. Visitors are encouraged to call ahead to facilitate entry into the building.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Maya Solomon, Forest Legacy Program Specialist, by phone at 202-206-1376. Individuals who use telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 800-877-8339 between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title: Community Forest and Open Space Program.

    OMB Number: 0596-0189.

    Expiration Date of Approval: August 31, 2015.

    Type of Request: Extension with no change.

    Abstract: The purpose of Community Forest Program is to achieve community benefits through grants to local governments, Tribal Governments, and qualified nonprofit organizations to establish community forests by acquiring and protecting private forestlands. This proposed rule includes information requirements necessary to implement Community Forest Program and comply with grants regulations and OMB Circulars. The information requirements will be used to help the Forest Service in the following areas: (1) To determine that the applicant is eligible to receive funds under the program, (2) to determine if the proposal meets the qualifications in the law and regulations, (3) to evaluate and rank the proposals based on a standard, consistent information; and (4) to determine if the projects costs are allowable and sufficient cost share is provided.

    Local governmental entities, Tribal Governments, and qualified nonprofit organizations are the only entities eligible for the program, and therefore are the only organizations from which information will be collected.

    The information collection currently required for a request for proposals and grant application is approved and has been assigned the OMB Control No. 0596-0227.

    Estimated Annual Number of Respondents: 150.

    Estimated Burden per Response: 22.

    Estimated Number of Responses per Respondent: 1.

    Estimated Number of Total Annual Responses: 150.

    Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 4,778 hours.

    Comment Is Invited

    Comment is invited on: (1) Whether this collection of information is necessary for the stated purposes and the proper performance of the functions of the Agency, including whether the information will have practical or scientific utility; (2) the accuracy of the Agency's estimate of the burden of the collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including the use of automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

    All comments received in response to this notice, including names and addresses when provided, will be a matter of public record. Comments will be summarized and included in the request for Office of Management and Budget approval.

    Dated: April 1, 2015. Victoria C. Christiansen, Associate Deputy Chief, State and Private Forestry.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07996 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3411-15-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Forest Service Roadless Area Conservation; National Forest System Lands in Colorado AGENCY:

    Forest Service, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice of intent to prepare a supplemental environmental impact statement.

    SUMMARY:

    The U.S. Department of Agriculture is initiating a supplemental environmental impact statement (SEIS) to propose reinstatement of the North Fork Coal Mining Area exception of the Colorado Roadless Rule. The exception would allow for temporary road construction for coal exploration and/or coal-related surface activities in a 19,100-acre area defined as the North Fork Coal Mining Area. The Forest Service will use the SEIS to address specific deficiencies identified by the District Court of Colorado in High Country Conservation Advocates v. United States Forest Service (D. Colo. June 27, 2014).

    DATES:

    Comments must be received in writing by May 22, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments may be submitted electronically at https://cara.ecosystem-management.org/Public/CommentInput?Project=46470. In addition written comments can be submitted via hard-copy mail to: Colorado Roadless Rule, 740 Simms Street, Golden, CO 80401.

    All comments, including names and addresses, are placed in the record and are available for public inspection and copying.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ken Tu at 303-275-5156. Individuals using telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Information Relay Services at 1-800-877-8339 between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On July 3, 2012 (77 FR 39576), the U.S. Department of Agriculture promulgated the Colorado Roadless Rule, a state-specific regulation for management of Colorado Roadless Areas. This Rule addressed State-specific concerns while conserving roadless area characteristics. One State-specific concern was to avoid foreclosing exploration and development of coal resources on the Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre, and Gunnison (GMUG) National Forests. The Colorado Roadless Rule addressed this by defining a 19,100-acre area as the North Fork Coal Mining Area, and developing an exception that allows temporary road construction for coal-related activities within that defined area.

    In July 2013, High Country Conservation Advocates, WildEarth Guardians, and Sierra Club challenged the Forest Service's decision to consent to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) modifying two existing coal leases, the BLM's companion decision to modify the leases, BLM's authorization of an exploration plan in the lease modification areas, and the North Fork Coal Mining Area exception of the Colorado Roadless Rule. In June 2014, the District Court of Colorado found the environmental documents supporting the four decisions to be in violation of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) due to analysis deficiencies. In September 2014, the District Court of Colorado vacated the lease modifications, the exploration plan, and the North Fork Coal Mining Area exception of the Colorado Roadless Rule (36 CFR 294.43(c)(1)(ix)).

    This supplemental NEPA process will only address the Colorado Roadless Rule. The lease modifications and exploration plan authorization will be addressed in future environmental analyses, if needed.

    Purpose and Need

    The purpose and need for this supplemental EIS is to provide management direction for conserving roadless characteristics within the area while addressing the State interest in not foreclosing exploration and development of the coal resources in the North Fork Coal Mining Area.

    Proposed Action

    The proposed action for the Colorado Roadless Rule supplemental is to reinstate the North Fork Coal Mining Area exception as written in 36 CFR 294.43(c)(1)(ix). In addition, the Forest Service is proposing to administratively correct the North Fork Coal Mining Area boundary to remedy clerical errors.

    Alternative to the Proposed Action

    The other alternative being considered is the no-action alternative, which is the continuation of current management following the District Court ruling to vacate the North Fork Coal Mining Area exception. The Colorado Roadless Rule contains a severability clause (36 CFR 294.48(f)), which allows the rest of the Rule to remain in effect. Therefore, the District Court of Colorado's ruling only changed management of Colorado Roadless Areas in the North Fork Coal Mining Area. Currently, the North Fork Coal Mining Area is being managed the same as other non-upper tier Colorado Roadless Areas. Valid existing coal leases would operate according the terms of their leases.

    Cooperating Agencies

    The Colorado Department of Natural Resources and the BLM will participate as cooperating agencies in the preparation of the SEIS.

    Responsible Official

    The Responsible Official for the rulemaking and SEIS is the Secretary of Agriculture or his designee.

    Decision To Be Made

    The Responsible Official will determine whether to reinstate the North Fork Coal Mining Area exception, or continue to manage the area without the exception. In addition, the Forest Service will determine if corrections to the North Fork Coal Mining Area boundary should be made to adjust for clerical errors.

    Scoping Process

    The Forest Service is seeking public comments for 45 days from the publication date of this notice. Comments should be limited to issues related to the proposed action, which is limited only to reinstating the North Fork Coal Mining Area exception of the Colorado Roadless Rule. The Forest Service is not seeking comments on the other portions of the Colorado Roadless Rule, roadless area boundary modifications, or other roadless areas in Colorado.

    Due to the extensive public participation process that occurred with the development of the Colorado Roadless Rule, no public meetings are planned for this 45 day scoping effort. However, public meetings may be held in Denver and Paonia, Colorado after the release of the Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement (SDEIS) and proposed rule.

    Estimated Timeline

    The SDEIS and proposed rule is estimated to be released in early fall 2015. The Supplemental Final EIS is estimated spring 2016.

    Brian Ferebee, Deputy Regional Forester, Rocky Mountain Region.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07886 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 3410-11-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Forest Service Notice of Administrative Settlement Agreement and Order on Consent for Engineering Evaluation/Cost Analysis Nacimiento Mine Site, Santa Fe National Forest, New Mexico AGENCY:

    Forest Service, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice of Settlement.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with Section 122(i) of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act of 1980, as amended (CERCLA), 42 U.S.C. 9622(i), notice is hereby given of an Administrative Settlement Agreement and Order on Consent (ASAOC), between the United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service (Forest Service) and Williams Express LLC (Williams), under Sections 104, 107 and 122 of CERCLA, regarding the Nacimiento Mine Site located on the Santa Fe National Forest near Cuba, New Mexico. The property that is the subject of this proposed ASAOC is areas where hazardous substances and/or pollutants or contaminants are located on the surface features of the federally owned portion of the Site designated as Operable Unit 1 (OU1).

    This ASAOC requires Williams perform an Engineering Evaluation and Cost Analysis (EE/CA) report to develop, evaluate, and select cleanup alternatives involving mining waste piles and other surface features located on the federally owned portion of OU1 at the Site. The performance of this work must be approved and monitored by the Forest Service. Also under the ASAOC, Williams will reimburse up to $7,500 of the Forest Service's oversight costs related to the EE/CA.

    For thirty (30) days following the date of publication of this notice, the United States will receive written comments relating to the ASAOC. The United States will consider all comments received and may modify or withdraw its consent to the ASAOC if comments received disclose facts or considerations that indicate that the settlement is inappropriate, improper, or inadequate. The United States' response to any comments received will be available for public inspection at the USDA, Office of General Counsel, Mountain Region, 740 Simms Street, Golden, Colorado 80401, and the Forest Service's Southwestern Regional Office, 333 Broadway SE., Albuquerque, NM 87102.

    DATES:

    Comments must be submitted on or before May 7, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    The proposed settlement and additional background information relating to the settlement are available for public inspection at the offices located at the United States Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Southwestern Regional Office, 333 Broadway SE., Albuquerque, NM 87102, or from Kirk M. Minckler with USDA's Office of the General Counsel, (303) 275-5549. Comments should reference the Nacimiento Mine, Santa Fe National Forest, Sandoval County, New Mexico, and should be addressed to Kirk M. Minckler, USDA Office of the General Counsel, P.O. Box 25005, Denver, CO 80225-005.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For technical information, contact Steven J. McDonald, USDA Forest Service Southwestern Region, 333 Broadway SE., Albuquerque, NM 87102, phone (505) 842-3838. For legal information, contact Kirk M. Minckler, USDA Office of the General Counsel, P.O. Box 25005, Denver, CO 80225-0005; phone (303) 275-5549, Fax: (303) 275-5557; email: [email protected]

    Dated: March 31, 2015. Danny R. Montoya, Acting Deputy Regional Forester, USDA Forest Service, Southwestern Region.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07898 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 3410-11-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE U.S. Census Bureau Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Geographic Partnership Programs AGENCY:

    U.S. Census Bureau, Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on proposed and/or continuing information collections, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Public Law 104-13 (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)).

    DATES:

    To ensure consideration, written comments must be submitted on or before June 8, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Direct all written comments to Jennifer Jessup, Departmental Paperwork Clearance Officer, Department of Commerce, Room 6625, 14th and Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20230 (or via the Internet at [email protected]).

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Direct requests for additional information or copies of the information collection instrument(s) and instructions to Laura Waggoner, U.S. Census Bureau, Washington, DC 20233 (or via the Internet at [email protected]).

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Abstract

    The mission of the Geography Division (GEO) within the Census Bureau is to plan, coordinate, and administer all geographic and cartographic activities needed to facilitate Census Bureau statistical programs throughout the United States and its territories. GEO manages programs to continuously update geographic data including addresses, spatial features, boundaries, and geographic entities in the Master Address File/Topologically Integrated Geographic Encoding and Referencing System (MAF/TIGER) System. GEO also conducts research into geographic concepts, methods, and standards needed to facilitate Census Bureau data collection and dissemination programs.

    Geographic Partnership Programs (GPPs) encourages participants, following Census Bureau guidelines, to review, update, and suggest modifications to geographic data to maintain MAF/TIGER and to ensure the accurate reporting of data from censuses and surveys. Because state, local, and tribal governments have geographic data and current knowledge about where growth and change are occurring in their jurisdictions, their input into the overall development of a continually maintained address list for censuses and surveys makes a vital contribution. The Census Bureau recognizes that state, local, and tribal governments have authoritative geographic data for their jurisdiction. The benefits to local governments in sharing that information as part of the Census Bureau's GPPs are realized with quality data for more accurate results of censuses and surveys.

    II. Method of Collection

    This notice is for a generic clearance that will cover a number of activities required for updating MAF/TIGER with participant-provided address and other geographic information, or obtain address and spatial data for research and evaluation purposes. The information collected in these programs in cooperation with state, local, and tribal governments and other partners is essential to the mission of the Census Bureau and directly contributes to the successful outcome of censuses and surveys conducted by the Census Bureau. The generic clearance allows the Census Bureau to focus its resources on actual operational planning, development of procedures, and implementation of programs to update and improve the geographic data maintained in MAF/TIGER.

    The Census Bureau will develop guidelines and procedures for state, local, and tribal government submissions of address data and geographic boundaries, and will outline the mutual roles and responsibilities of each party within each GPP. The GPP listed below, is not exhaustive of all activities that may be performed under this generic clearance. The Census Bureau will follow the approved procedure when submitting any additional activities not specifically listed here.

    Geographic Support System Initiative (GSS-I)

    The GSS-I is an integrated program designed to improve geographic data and enhance the quality assessment and measurement for MAF/TIGER. The GSS-I builds on the accomplishments of the last decade's MAF/TIGER Enhancement Program (MTEP), which redesigned MAF/TGER, improved the positional accuracy of TIGER spatial features, and emphasized quality measurement. The Census Bureau plans on a continual update process for MAF/TIGER throughout the decade to support current surveys, including the American Community Survey (ACS). Major participants are the Census Bureau with state, local, and tribal governments. The Census Bureau will contact state, local, and tribal governments to obtain files containing their geographic data to explore data exchange opportunities, and share best practices on maintaining quality geographic data. Governments can provide a file of their geographic data or provide data through a web-based application sponsored by the Census Bureau. Governments can choose the format and medium to provide their data directly to the Census Bureau, or may elect to standardize their data using Community TIGER.

    III. Data

    OMB Control Number: 0607-0795.

    Form Number: Not available at this time.

    Type of Review: Regular submission.

    Affected Public: State, local, and tribal governments.

    Estimated Number of Respondents (Fiscal Year (FY) 2015):

    GEO Contact with Local Governments: 1,000. GEO Acquisition of Local Geographic Data and Content Clarification: 500. Community TIGER Contact with Local Governments: 200. Community TIGER Updates: 200.

    Estimated Number of Respondents (FY 2016 & FY 2017):

    GEO Contact with Local Governments: 2,000. GEO Acquisition of Local Geographic Data and Content Clarification: 1,000. Community TIGER Contact with Local Governments: 500. Community TIGER Updates: 500.

    Estimated Time per Response (all FYs):

    GEO Contact with Local Governments: 2 hours. GEO Acquisition of Local Geographic Data and Content Clarification: 10 hours. Community TIGER Contact with Local Governments: 2 hours. Community TIGER Updates: 40 hours.

    Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours (FY 2015):

    GEO Contact with Local Governments: 2,000. GEO Acquisition of Local Geographic Data and Content Clarification: 5,000. Community TIGER Contact with Local Governments: 400. Community TIGER Updates: 8,000.

    Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours (FY 2016 & FY 2017):

    GEO Contact with Local Governments: 4,000. GEO Acquisition of Local Geographic Data and Content Clarification: 10,000. Community TIGER Contact with Local Governments: 1,000. Community TIGER Updates: 20,000.

    Estimated Total Annual Cost to Public: $0.

    Respondent Obligation: Voluntary.

    Legal Authority: Title 13 U.S.C. Sections 16, 141, and 193.

    IV. Request for Comments

    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 (including hours and cost) of the proposed collection of information; (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 of this information collection; they also will become a matter of public record.

    Dated: April 2, 2015. Glenna Mickelson, Management Analyst, Office of the Chief Information Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07888 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 3510-07-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Telecommunications and Information Administration First Responder Network Authority [Docket Number: 150306226-5315-02] RIN 0660-XC017 Further Proposed Interpretations of Parts of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 AGENCY:

    First Responder Network Authority, National Telecommunications and Information Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Notice and request for comments; extension of comment period.

    SUMMARY:

    The First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) published a notice and request for comments in the Federal Register on March 13, 2015, titled “Further Proposed Interpretations of Parts of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012” (Second Notice). The comment period for the Second Notice, which would have ended on April 13, 2015, is extended to April 28, 2015.

    DATES:

    Comments must be submitted on or before April 28, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Written comments may be submitted electronically through www.regulations.gov or by mail to First Responder Network Authority, National Telecommunications and Information Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 12201 Sunrise Valley Drive, M/S 243, Reston, VA 20192. Comments received related to the Second Notice will be made a part of the public record and will be posted to www.regulations.gov without change. Comments should be machine-readable and should not be copy-protected. Comments should include the name of the person or organization filing the comment as well as a page number on each page of the submission. All personally identifiable information (e.g., name, address) voluntarily submitted by the commenter may be publicly accessible. Do not submit confidential business information or otherwise sensitive or protected information.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Eli Veenendaal, First Responder Network Authority, National Telecommunications and Information Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 12201 Sunrise Valley Drive, M/S 243, Reston, VA 20192; 703-648-4167; or [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On March 13, 2015, FirstNet published a notice and request for comments in the Federal Register, titled “Further Proposed Interpretations of Parts of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012” (80 FR 13336). That Federal Register notice listed April 13, 2015, as the end date for the comment period. FirstNet is extending the comment deadline from April 13, 2015, to April 28, 2015. This extension responds to numerous inquiries from interested parties that have requested additional time to respond based on the significant nature of the Second Notice. All other information in the original notice remains unchanged.

    Dated: March 31, 2015. Eli Veenendaal, Attorney-Advisor, First Responder Network Authority.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07691 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 3510-TL-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-428-840] Lightweight Thermal Paper From Germany: Final Results of the Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2012-2013 AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    On December 1, 2014, the Department of Commerce (the Department) published the preliminary results of the administrative review of the antidumping duty order on lightweight thermal paper (LWTP) from Germany.1 The period of review (POR) is November 1, 2012, through October 31, 2013. We invited interested parties to comment on the preliminary results. After reviewing the comments received and making corrections to the margin calculation program, we continue to find that Papierfabrik August Koehler SE (Koehler) did not make sales of subject merchandise at less than normal value. The final dumping margin for Koehler, listed below in the section entitled “Final Results of the Review,” is unchanged from the preliminary results.

    1See Lightweight Thermal Paper from Germany; Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2012-2013, 79 FR 71086 (December 1, 2014) (Preliminary Results).

    DATES:

    Effective Date: April 7, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    David Goldberger, AD/CVD Operations, Office II, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC, 20230; telephone (202) 482-4136.

    Background

    Since the publication of the Preliminary Results, in January 2015, Koehler submitted a case brief. The Department is conducting this administrative review in accordance with section 751(a)(1) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act).

    Scope of the Order

    The merchandise covered by the order is LWTP.2

    2 For a complete description of the scope, see Antidumping Duty Orders: Lightweight Thermal Paper from Germany and the People's Republic of China, 73 FR 70959 (November 24, 2008). See also memorandum entitled “Lightweight Thermal Paper from Germany: Issues and Decision Memorandum for the Final Results of the Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2012-2013” (Issues and Decision Memorandum).

    Analysis of Comments Received

    All issues raised in the case and rebuttal briefs by parties are addressed in the Issues and Decision Memorandum, which is dated concurrently with, and adopted by, this notice. A list of the issues which parties raised and to which we respond in the Issues and Decision Memorandum is attached to this notice as Appendix I. The Issues and Decision Memorandum is a public document and is on file electronically via Enforcement and Compliance's Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Centralized Electronic Service System (ACCESS).3 ACCESS is available to registered users at http://access.trade.gov and to all parties in the Central Records Unit, room 7046 of the main Department of Commerce building. In addition, a complete version of the Issues and Decision Memorandum can be accessed directly on the Internet at http://enforcement.trade.gov/frn/. The signed and electronic versions of the Issues and Decision Memorandum are identical in content.

    3 On November 24, 2014, Enforcement and Compliance changed the name of Import Administration's AD and CVD Centralized Electronic Service System (“IA ACCESS”) to AD and CVD Centralized Electronic Service System (“ACCESS”). The Web site location was changed from http://iaaccess.trade.gov to http://access.trade.gov. The Final Rule changing the references to the Regulations can be found at 79 FR 69046 (November 20, 2014).

    Final Results of the Review

    As a result of this review, we determine that the following weighted-average dumping margin exists for the period November 1, 2012, through October 31, 2013.

    Manufacturer/Exporter Percent margin Papierfabrik August Koehler SE 0.00 Disclosure

    We intend to disclose the calculations performed within five days of the date of publication of this notice to parties in this proceeding in accordance with 19 CFR 351.224(b).

    Assessment Rates

    The Department will determine, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) shall assess, antidumping duties on all appropriate entries, in accordance with 19 CFR 351.212(b). The Department intends to issue appropriate assessment instructions to CBP 15 days after publication of these final results of review. Because we have calculated a zero margin for Koehler in the final results of this review, we will instruct CBP to liquidate the appropriate entries without regard to antidumping duties.

    The Department clarified its “automatic assessment” regulation on May 6, 2003.4 This clarification applies to entries of subject merchandise during the POR produced by Koehler for which it did not know that the merchandise was destined for the United States. In such instances, we will instruct CBP to liquidate unreviewed entries at the all-others rate effective during the POR if there is no rate for the intermediate company(ies) involved in the transaction. See Assessment Policy Notice for a full discussion of this clarification.

    4See Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Proceedings: Assessment of Antidumping Duties, 68 FR 23954 (May 6, 2003) (Assessment Policy Notice).

    Discontinuation of Cash Deposit Requirements

    On January 22, 2015, the U.S. International Trade Commission determined, pursuant to section 751(c) of the Act (i.e., as a result of a five-year “sunset” review), that revocation of the antidumping duty order on the subject merchandise would not be likely to lead to the continuation or recurrence of material injury to an industry in the United States within a reasonably foreseeable time.5 Accordingly, the antidumping duty order on LWTP from Germany was revoked effective November 24, 2013.6 As a result, we have instructed CBP to discontinue collection of cash deposits of antidumping duties on entries of the subject merchandise made on or after November 24, 2013.

    5See Lightweight Thermal Paper From China And Germany; Determination, 80 FR 3252 (January 22, 2015).

    6See Lightweight Thermal Paper From the People's Republic of China and Germany: Continuation of the Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Orders on the People's Republic of China, Revocation of the Antidumping Duty Order on Germany, 80 FR 5083 (January 30, 2015).

    Notification to Importers

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

    Notification Regarding Administrative Protective Orders

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

    The final results of this administrative review and notice are published in accordance with sections 751(a)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.221.

    Dated: March 31, 2015. Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance. Appendix I Topic Discussed in the Issues and Decision Memorandum 1. Ministerial Errors in Margin Calculation Program
    [FR Doc. 2015-07974 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-428-840] Lightweight Thermal Paper From Germany: Rescission of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2013-2014 AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce (the Department) is rescinding its administrative review of the antidumping duty order on lightweight thermal paper (LWTP) from Germany for the period of November 1, 2013, through November 23, 2013, based on the withdrawal of all requests for review.

    DATES:

    Effective Date: April 7, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    David Goldberger, AD/CVD Operations, Office II, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-4136.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    On November 3, 2014, the Department published in the Federal Register a notice of opportunity to request an administrative review of the antidumping duty order on LWTP from Germany for the period of review (POR) November 1, 2013, to October 31, 2014.1

    1See Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Order, Finding, or Suspended Investigation; Opportunity To Request Administrative Review, 79 FR 65176 (November 3, 2014).

    On December 1, 2014, in accordance with section 751(a) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act), and 19 CFR 351.213(b), the Department received a timely request from Appvion Inc. (the petitioner), a domestic interested party, to conduct an administrative review of the POR sales of Papierfabrik August Koehler SE (Koehler). Also on this date, Koehler timely requested a review of its POR sales.

    On December 23, 2014, the Department published in the Federal Register a notice of initiation of an administrative review of the antidumping duty order on LWTP from Germany with respect to Koehler.2 On January 7, 2015, Koehler withdrew its request for review.3 On January 30, 2015, as a result of a five-year (“sunset”) review, the Department revoked the antidumping duty order on imports of LWTP from Germany, effective November 24, 2013.4 Therefore, the POR for this administrative review was revised to November 1, 2013, through November 23, 2013.5

    2See Initiation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Administrative Reviews, 79 FR 76956 (December 23, 2014).

    3See January 7, 2015, Letter from Koehler.

    4See Lightweight Thermal Paper From the People's Republic of China and Germany: Continuation of the Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Orders on the People's Republic of China, Revocation of the Antidumping Duty Order on Germany, 80 FR 5083 (January 30, 2015).

    5See February 10, 2015, Memorandum to the File regarding revision of POR due to revocation of antidumping duty order.

    On February 20, 2015, the petitioner withdrew its request for review of Koehler.6

    6See February 20, 2015, Letter from the petitioner.

    Rescission of Administrative Review

    Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.213(d)(1), the Department will rescind an administrative review, in whole or in part, if the parties that requested a review withdraw the request within 90 days of the date of publication of the notice of initiation of the requested review. Koehler and the petitioner withdrew their requests for review before the 90-day deadline (i.e., March 23, 2015), and no other party requested an administrative review of the antidumping duty order on LWTP from Germany for the POR. Therefore, in response to the timely withdrawal of requests for review and pursuant to 19 CFR 351.213(d)(1), the Department is rescinding this review in its entirety.

    Assessment

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

    Notification to Importers

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

    Notification Regarding Administrative Protective Order

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

    This notice is published in accordance with section 777(i)(1) of the Act, and 19 CFR 351.213(d)(4).

    Dated: April 1, 2015. Gary Taverman, Associate Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07973 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 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: Final Results of Expedited First Sunset Review of the Antidumping Duty Order AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce (“the Department”) finds that revocation of the antidumping duty (“AD”) order on certain oil country tubular goods (“OCTG”) from the People's Republic of China (“PRC”) would be likely to lead to continuation or recurrence of dumping at the levels indicated in the “Final Results of Sunset Review” section of this notice.

    DATES:

    Effective: April 7, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    David Cordell or Angelica Townshend, AD/CVD Operations, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-0408 or (202) 482-3019, respectively.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    On May 21, 2010, the Department published the AD order on OCTG from the PRC.1 On December 1, 2014, the Department published a notice of initiation of the first sunset review of the AD order on OCTG from the PRC, pursuant to section 751(c) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (“the Act”).2

    1See Certain Oil Country Tubular Goods From the People's Republic of China: Amended Final Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value and Antidumping Duty Order, 75 FR 28551 (May 21, 2010) (“Amended Final Determination and Order”).

    2See Initiation of Five-Year (“Sunset”) Review, 79 FR 71091 (December 1, 2014).

    On December 3, 2014, Maverick Tube Corporation (“Maverick”) timely notified the Department of its intent to participate.3 On December 10, 2014, Boomerang Tube (“Boomerang”), Energex Tube, a division of JMC Steel Group (“Energex Tube”), EVRAZ Rocky Mountain Steel (“EVRAZ”), IPSCO Tubulars, Inc. (“IPSCO”), Tejas Tubular Products, Inc. (“Tejas Tubular”), Vallourec Star, L.P. (“Vallourec”), and Welded Tube USA Inc. (“Welded Tube”) filed their intent to participate 4

    3See Letter to the Department from Maverick, dated December 3, 2014.

    4See Letter to the Department from Boomerang, Energex Tube, EVRAZ, IPSCO, Tejas Tubular, Vallourec, and Welded Tube, dated December 10, 2014.

    On December 15, 2014, United States Steel Corporation (“U.S. Steel”) likewise timely notified the Department of its intent to participate.5 On December 31, 2014, the Department received an adequate substantive response from Boomerang, Energex Tube, EVRAZ, IPSCO, Maverick, Tejas Tubular, U.S. Steel, Vallourec, and Welded Tube within the 30-day deadline specified in 19 CFR 351.218(d)(3)(i).6 The Department did not receive substantive responses from any respondent interested party. As a result, pursuant to section 751(c)(3)(B) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.218(e)(1)(ii)(C)(2), the Department conducted an expedited (120-day) sunset review of the AD order on OCTG from the PRC.

    5See Letter to the Department from U.S. Steel, dated December 15, 2014.

    6See Letter from domestic interested parties to the Department, entitled “Oil Country Tubular Goods from China, First Sunset Review: Substantive Response to Notice of Initiation,” dated December 31, 2014.

    Scope of the Order

    This order covers OCTG. The Issues and Decision Memorandum, which is hereby adopted by this notice, provides a full description of the scope of the order.7

    7See “Expedited First Sunset Review of the Antidumping Duty Order on Certain Oil Country Tubular Goods from the People's Republic of China: Issues and Decision Memorandum,” from Gary Taverman, Associate Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations, to Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance, dated concurrently with this notice (“Issues and Decision Memorandum”).

    The Issues and Decision Memorandum is a public document and is on file electronically via Enforcement and Compliance's Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Centralized Electronic Service System.8 ACCESS is available to registered users at http://access.trade.gov and to all parties in the Central Records Unit, Room 7046 of the main Department of Commerce building. In addition, a complete version of the Decision Memorandum can be accessed at http://enforcement.trade.gov/frn/. The signed Issues and Decision Memorandum and the electronic version of the Issues and Decision Memorandum are identical in content.

    8 On November 24, 2014, Enforcement and Compliance changed the name of Enforcement and Compliance's AD and CVD Centralized Electronic Service System (IA ACCESS) to AD and CVD Centralized Electronic Service System (ACCESS). The Web site location was changed from http://iaaccess.trade.gov to http://access.trade.gov. The Final Rule changing the references to the Regulations can be found at 79 FR 69046 (November 20, 2014).

    Analysis of Comments Received

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

    Final Results of Sunset Review

    Pursuant to section 752(c)(3) of the Act, the Department determines that revocation of the AD order on OCTG from the PRC would be likely to lead to continuation or recurrence of dumping at weighted-average margins up to 99.14 percent.9

    9See Amended Final Determination and Order, 75 FR 28551-28552 (May 21, 2010).

    Administrative Protective Order

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

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

    Dated: March 31, 2015. Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance. Appendix List of Topics Discussed in the Issues and Decision Memorandum 1. Summary 2. Background 3. Scope of the Order 4. History of the Order 5. Discussion of the Issues a. Likelihood of Continuation or Recurrence of Dumping b. Magnitude of the Margin of Dumping Likely to Prevail 6. Final Results of Sunset Review 7. Recommendation
    [FR Doc. 2015-07976 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Cancellation of Meeting of Advisory Committee on Commercial Remote Sensing AGENCY:

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

    ACTION:

    Notice of public meeting cancellation.

    SUMMARY:

    The Advisory Committee on Commercial Remote Sensing (ACCRES) meeting on April 28, 2015 is cancelled.

    DATES:

    Date and Time: The cancelled meeting will be rescheduled in May or June of 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting location will be announced at the time the new meeting announcement is placed in the Federal Register.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    As required by section 10(a) (2) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, 5 U.S.C. App. (1982), notice is hereby given of the meeting of ACCRES. ACCRES was established by the Secretary of Commerce (Secretary) on May 21, 2002, to advise the Secretary through the Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere on long- and short-range strategies for the licensing of commercial remote sensing satellite systems.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Tahara Dawkins, NOAA/NESDIS/CRSRA, 1335 East West Highway, Room 8260, Silver Spring, Maryland 20910; telephone (301) 713-3385, fax (301) 713-1249, email [email protected], or Richard James at telephone (301) 713-0572, email [email protected]

    Tahara Dawkins, Director Commercial Remote Sensing and Regulatory Affairs.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07875 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 3510-HR-P
    BUREAU OF CONSUMER FINANCIAL PROTECTION Community Bank Advisory Council Meeting AGENCY:

    Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection.

    ACTION:

    Notice of public meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    This notice sets forth the announcement of a public meeting of the Community Bank Advisory Council (CBAC or Council) of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (Bureau). The notice also describes the functions of the Council. Notice of the meeting is permitted by section 6 of the CBAC Charter and is intended to notify the public of this meeting. Specifically, Section X of the CBAC Charter states: (1) Each meeting of the Council shall be open to public observation, to the extent that a facility is available to accommodate the public, unless the Bureau, in accordance with paragraph (4) of this section, determines that the meeting shall be closed. The Bureau also will make reasonable efforts to make the meetings available to the public through live recording. (2) Notice of the time, place and purpose of each meeting, as well as a summary of the proposed agenda, shall be published in the Federal Register not more than 45 or less than 15 days prior to the scheduled meeting date. Shorter notice may be given when the Bureau determines that the Council's business so requires; in such event, the public will be given notice at the earliest practicable time. (3) Minutes of meetings, records, reports, studies, and agenda of the Council shall be posted on the Bureau's Web site (www.consumerfinance.gov). (4) The Bureau may close to the public a portion of any meeting, for confidential discussion. If the Bureau closes a meeting or any portion of a meeting, the Bureau will issue, at least annually, a summary of the Council's activities during such closed meetings or portions of meetings.

    DATES:

    The meeting date is Wednesday, April 22, 3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting location is Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, 1275 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20002.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Jennifer Draper, Consumer Advisory Board & Councils, External Affairs, 1700 G Street NW., Washington, DC 20552; telephone: 202-435-7176; [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background

    Section 1014(a) of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (http://www.sec.gov/about/laws/wallstreetreform-cpa.pdf) (Dodd-Frank Act) provides: “The Director shall establish a Community Bank Advisory Board to advise and consult with the Bureau in the exercise of its functions under the Federal consumer financial laws, and to provide information on emerging practices in the consumer financial products or services industry, including regional trends, concerns, and other relevant information.” 12 U.S.C. 5494.

    (a) The purpose of the Council is outlined in Section 1014(a) of the Dodd-Frank Act (http://www.sec.gov/about/laws/wallstreetreform-cpa.pdf), which states that the Council shall “advise and consult with the Bureau in the exercise of its functions under the Federal consumer financial laws” and “provide information on emerging practices in the consumer financial products or services industry, including regional trends, concerns, and other relevant information.” (b) To carry out the Council's purpose, the scope of its activities shall include providing information, analysis, and recommendations to the Bureau. The Council will generally serve as a vehicle for market intelligence and expertise for the Bureau. Its objectives will include identifying and assessing the impact on consumers and other market participants of new, emerging, and changing products, practices, or services. (c) The Council will also be available to advise and consult with the Director and the Bureau on other matters related to the Bureau's functions under the Dodd-Frank Act.

    II. Agenda

    The Community Bank Advisory Council will discuss credit scores and credit reporting.

    Persons who need a reasonable accommodation to participate should contact [email protected], 202-435-9EEO, 1-855-233-0362, or 202-435-9742 (TTY) at least ten business days prior to the meeting or event to request assistance. The request must identify the date, time, location, and title of the meeting or event, the nature of the assistance requested, and contact information for the requester. CFPB will strive to provide, but cannot guarantee that accommodation will be provided for late requests.

    Individuals who wish to attend the Community Bank Advisory Council meeting must RSVP to [email protected] by noon, Tuesday, April 21, 2015. Members of the public must RSVP by the due date and must include “CBAC” in the subject line of the RSVP.

    III. Availability

    The Council's agenda will be made available to the public on Monday, April 6, 2015, via consumerfinance.gov. Individuals should express in their RSVP if they require a paper copy of the agenda.

    A recording and transcript of this meeting will be available after the meeting on the CFPB's Web site consumerfinance.gov.

    Dated: April 1, 2015. Christopher D'Angelo, Chief of Staff, Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07977 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4810-AM-P
    DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION [Docket No.: ED-2015-ICCD-0009] Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Lender's Application Process (LAP) AGENCY:

    Federal Student Aid (FSA), Department of Education (ED).

    ACTION:

    Notice

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), ED is proposing an extension of an existing information collection.

    DATES:

    Interested persons are invited to submit comments on or before May 7, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments submitted in response to this notice should be submitted electronically through the Federal eRulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov by selecting Docket ID number ED-2015-ICCD-0009 or via postal mail, commercial delivery, or hand delivery. If the regulations.gov site is not available to the public for any reason, ED will temporarily accept comments at [email protected] Please note that comments submitted by fax or email and those submitted after the comment period will not be accepted; ED will ONLY accept comments during the comment period in this mailbox when the regulations.gov site is not available. 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, Mailstop L-OM-2-2E319, Room 2E103, Washington, DC 20202.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For specific questions related to collection activities, please contact Courtney Clemons, 202-377-3673.

    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: Lender's Application Process (LAP).

    OMB Control Number: 1845-0032.

    Type of Review: An extension of an existing information collection.

    Respondents/Affected Public: Private Sector.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Responses: 10.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Burden Hours: 2.

    Abstract: The Lender's Application Process (LAP) is submitted by lenders who are eligible for reimbursement of interest and special allowance, as well as Federal Insured Student Loan (FISL) claims payment, under the Federal Family Education Loan Program. The information will be used by ED to update Lender Identification Numbers (LID's), lender names, addresses with 9 digit zip codes, and other pertinent information.

    Dated: April 2, 2015. Kate Mullan, Acting Director<E T="03">,</E> Information Collection Clearance Division, Privacy, Information and Records Management Services, Office of Management.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07892 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4000-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION Applications for New Awards; Vocational Rehabilitation Services Projects for American Indians With Disabilities AGENCY:

    Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, Department of Education.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    Overview Information Vocational Rehabilitation Services Projects for American Indians With Disabilities Notice inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2015. Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number: 84.250K. DATES:

    Applications Available: April 7, 2015.

    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: June 8, 2015.

    Full Text of Announcement I. Funding Opportunity Description

    Purpose of Program: The purpose of this program is to provide vocational rehabilitation (VR) services to American Indians with disabilities who reside on or near Federal or State reservations, consistent with their individual strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests, and informed choice, so that they may prepare for and engage in high-quality employment that will increase opportunities for economic self-sufficiency.

    Priority: In accordance with 34 CFR 75.105(b)(2)(iv), this priority is from section 121(b)(4) of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended (29 U.S.C. 741(b)(4)).

    Competitive Preference Priority: For FY 2015 and any subsequent year in which we make awards from the list of unfunded applicants from this competition, this priority is a competitive preference priority. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(2)(i) we award an additional 10 points to an application that meets this priority.

    This priority is:

    Continuation of Previously Funded Tribal Programs.

    In making new awards under this program, we give priority to applications for the continuation of programs that have been funded under the Vocational Rehabilitation Services Projects for American Indians with Disabilities program.

    Program Authority:

    29 U.S.C. 741.

    Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General Administrative Regulations (EDGAR) in 34 CFR parts 75, 77, 81, 82, and 84. (b) The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Guidelines to Agencies on Governmentwide Debarment and Suspension (Nonprocurement) in 2 CFR part 180, as adopted and amended as regulations of the Department in 2 CFR part 3485. (c) The Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards in 2 CFR part 200, as adopted and amended in 2 CFR part 3474. (d) The regulations for this program in 34 CFR parts 369 and 371.

    II. Award Information

    Type of Award: Discretionary grants.

    Estimated Available Funds: $12,607,000.

    Contingent upon the availability of funds and the quality of applications, we may make additional awards in FY 2016 from the list of unfunded applicants from this competition.

    Estimated Range of Awards: $300,000-$600,000.

    Estimated Average Size of Awards: $450,000.

    Estimated Number of Awards: 25.

    Note:

    The Department is not bound by any estimates in this notice.

    Project Period: Up to 60 months.

    III. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: The governing bodies of Indian tribes (and consortia of those governing bodies) located on Federal and State reservations. The definition of “Indian Tribe” was amended by the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act enacted on July 22, 2014, to include “a tribal organization (as defined in section 4(l) of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act (25 U.S.C. 450(b)(l)).”

    In addition, the Department published final regulations in the Federal Register on February 5, 2015 (80 FR 6452), amending the definition of “reservation” in 34 CFR 369.4 and 371.4. The amended definition now reads, “ ‘Reservation’ means a Federal or State Indian reservation; public domain Indian allotment; former Indian reservation in Oklahoma; land held by incorporated Native groups, regional corporations, and village corporations under the provisions of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act; or a defined area of land recognized by a State or the Federal Government where there is a concentration of tribal members and on which the tribal government is providing structured activities and services.”

    2. Cost Sharing or Matching: Cost sharing is required by 34 CFR 371.40.

    IV. Application and Submission Information

    1. Address to Request Application Package: You can obtain an application package via the Internet or from the Education Publications Center (ED Pubs). To obtain a copy via the Internet, use the following address: www.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/grantapps/index.html. To obtain a copy from ED Pubs, write, fax, or call the following: ED Pubs, U.S. Department of Education, P.O. Box 22207, Alexandria, VA 22304. Telephone, toll free: 1-877-433-7827. FAX: (703) 605-6794. If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) or a text telephone (TTY), call, toll free: 1-877-576-7734.

    You can contact ED Pubs at its Web site, also: www.EDPubs.gov or at its email address: [email protected]

    If you request an application from ED Pubs, be sure to identify this program or competition as follows: CFDA number 84.250K.

    Individuals with disabilities can obtain a copy of the application package in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or compact disc) by contacting the team listed under Accessible Format in section VIII of this notice.

    2. Content and Form of Application Submission: Requirements concerning the content of an application, together with the forms you must submit, are in the application package for this competition. These include a requirement that the applicant submit documentation demonstrating that it is a federally or State recognized tribe and is located on a Federal or State reservation, as defined by the Department in the final regulations published in the Federal Register on February 5, 2015 (80 FR 6452). See 34 CFR 369.4 and 371.4.

    Note:

    Each application must describe how the special application requirements stated at 34 CFR 371.21 will be met, including evidence that the applicant has or will obtain a formal cooperative agreement with the appropriate State VR agency or agencies that include strategies for collaboration and coordination of service provision.

    3. Submission Dates and Times:

    Applications Available: April 7, 2015.

    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: June 8, 2015.

    Applications for grants under this competition must be submitted electronically using the Grants.gov Apply site (Grants.gov). For information (including dates and times) about how to submit your application electronically, or in paper format by mail or hand delivery if you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission requirement, please refer to section IV. 7. Other Submission Requirements of this notice.

    We do not consider an application that does not comply with the deadline requirements.

    Individuals with disabilities who need an accommodation or auxiliary aid in connection with the application process should contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in section VII of this notice. If the Department provides an accommodation or auxiliary aid to an individual with a disability in connection with the application process, the individual's application remains subject to all other requirements and limitations in this notice.

    4. Intergovernmental Review: This competition is not subject to Executive Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR part 79.

    5. Funding Restrictions: We reference regulations outlining funding restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.

    6. Data Universal Numbering System Number, Taxpayer Identification Number, and System for Award Management: To do business with the Department of Education, you must—

    a. Have a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number and a Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN);

    b. Register both your DUNS number and TIN with the System for Award Management (SAM) (formerly the Central Contractor Registry (CCR)), the Government's primary registrant database;

    c. Provide your DUNS number and TIN on your application; and

    d. Maintain an active SAM registration with current information while your application is under review by the Department and, if you are awarded a grant, during the project period.

    You can obtain a DUNS number from Dun and Bradstreet. A DUNS number can be created within one to two business days.

    If you are a corporate entity, agency, institution, or organization, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal Revenue Service. If you are an individual, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal Revenue Service or the Social Security Administration. If you need a new TIN, please allow two to five weeks for your TIN to become active.

    The SAM registration process can take approximately seven business days, but may take upwards of several weeks, depending on the completeness and accuracy of the data entered into the SAM database by an entity. Thus, if you think you might want to apply for Federal financial assistance under a program administered by the Department, please allow sufficient time to obtain and register your DUNS number and TIN. We strongly recommend that you register early.

    Note:

    Once your SAM registration is active, you will need to allow 24 to 48 hours for the information to be available in Grants.gov and before you can submit an application through Grants.gov.

    If you are currently registered with SAM, you may not need to make any changes. However, please make certain that the TIN associated with your DUNS number is correct. Also note that you will need to update your registration annually. This may take three or more business days.

    Information about SAM is available at www.SAM.gov. To further assist you with obtaining and registering your DUNS number and TIN in SAM or updating your existing SAM account, we have prepared a SAM.gov Tip Sheet, which you can find at: www2.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/sam-faqs.html.

    In addition, if you are submitting your application via Grants.gov, you must (1) be designated by your organization as an Authorized Organization Representative (AOR); and (2) register yourself with Grants.gov as an AOR. Details on these steps are outlined at the following Grants.gov Web page: www.grants.gov/web/grants/register.html.

    7. Other Submission Requirements: Applications for grants under this competition must be submitted electronically unless you qualify for an exception to this requirement in accordance with the instructions in this section.

    a. Electronic Submission of Applications

    Applications for grants under the Vocational Rehabilitation Services Projects for American Indians with Disabilities program, CFDA number 84.250K, must be submitted electronically using the Governmentwide Grants.gov Apply site at www.Grants.gov. Through this site, you will be able to download a copy of the application package, complete it offline, and then upload and submit your application. You may not email an electronic copy of a grant application to us.

    We will reject your application if you submit it in paper format unless, as described elsewhere in this section, you qualify for one of the exceptions to the electronic submission requirement and submit, no later than two weeks before the application deadline date, a written statement to the Department that you qualify for one of these exceptions. Further information regarding calculation of the date that is two weeks before the application deadline date is provided later in this section under Exception to Electronic Submission Requirement.

    You may access the electronic grant application for the Vocational Rehabilitation Service Projects for American Indians with Disabilities program at www.Grants.gov. You must search for the downloadable application package for this competition by the CFDA number. Do not include the CFDA number's alpha suffix in your search (e.g., search for 84.250, not 84.250K).

    Please note the following:

    • When you enter the Grants.gov site, you will find information about submitting an application electronically through the site, as well as the hours of operation.

    • Applications received by Grants.gov are date and time stamped. Your application must be fully uploaded and submitted and must be date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system no later than 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. Except as otherwise noted in this section, we will not accept your application if it is received—that is, date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system—after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. We do not consider an application that does not comply with the deadline requirements. When we retrieve your application from Grants.gov, we will notify you if we are rejecting your application because it was date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date.

    • The amount of time it can take to upload an application will vary depending on a variety of factors, including the size of the application and the speed of your Internet connection. Therefore, we strongly recommend that you do not wait until the application deadline date to begin the submission process through Grants.gov.

    • You should review and follow the Education Submission Procedures for submitting an application through Grants.gov that are included in the application package for this competition to ensure that you submit your application in a timely manner to the Grants.gov system. You can also find the Education Submission Procedures pertaining to Grants.gov under News and Events on the Department's G5 system home page at www.G5.gov.

    • You will not receive additional point value because you submit your application in electronic format, nor will we penalize you if you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission requirement, as described elsewhere in this section, and submit your application in paper format.

    • You must submit all documents electronically, including all information you typically provide on the following forms: the Application for Federal Assistance (SF 424), the Department of Education Supplemental Information for SF 424, Budget Information—Non-Construction Programs (ED 524), and all necessary assurances and certifications.

    • You must upload any narrative sections and all other attachments to your application as files in a PDF (Portable Document) read-only, non-modifiable format. Do not upload an interactive or fillable PDF file. If you upload a file type other than a read-only, non-modifiable PDF or submit a password-protected file, we will not review that material.

    • Your electronic application must comply with any page-limit requirements described in this notice.

    • After you electronically submit your application, you will receive from Grants.gov an automatic notification of receipt that contains a Grants.gov tracking number. (This notification indicates receipt by Grants.gov only, not receipt by the Department.) The Department then will retrieve your application from Grants.gov and send a second notification to you by email. This second notification indicates that the Department has received your application and has assigned your application a PR/Award number (an ED-specified identifying number unique to your application).

    • We may request that you provide us original signatures on forms at a later date.

    Application Deadline Date Extension in Case of Technical Issues with the Grants.gov System: If you are experiencing problems submitting your application through Grants.gov, please contact the Grants.gov Support Desk, toll free, at 1-800-518-4726. You must obtain a Grants.gov Support Desk Case Number and must keep a record of it.

    If you are prevented from electronically submitting your application on the application deadline date because of technical problems with the Grants.gov system, we will grant you an extension until 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, the following business day to enable you to transmit your application electronically or by hand delivery. You also may mail your application by following the mailing instructions described elsewhere in this notice.

    If you submit an application after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date, please contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in section VII of this notice and provide an explanation of the technical problem you experienced with Grants.gov, along with the Grants.gov Support Desk Case Number. We will accept your application if we can confirm that a technical problem occurred with the Grants.gov system and that that problem affected your ability to submit your application by 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. The Department will contact you after a determination is made on whether your application will be accepted.

    Note:

    The extensions to which we refer in this section apply only to the unavailability of, or technical problems with, the Grants.gov system. We will not grant you an extension if you failed to fully register to submit your application to Grants.gov before the application deadline date and time or if the technical problem you experienced is unrelated to the Grants.gov system.

    Exception to Electronic Submission Requirement: You qualify for an exception to the electronic submission requirement, and may submit your application in paper format, if you are unable to submit an application through the Grants.gov system because—

    • You do not have access to the Internet; or

    • You do not have the capacity to upload large documents to the Grants.gov system; and

    • No later than two weeks before the application deadline date (14 calendar days or, if the fourteenth calendar day before the application deadline date falls on a Federal holiday, the next business day following the Federal holiday), you mail or fax a written statement to the Department, explaining which of the two grounds for an exception prevents you from using the Internet to submit your application.

    If you mail your written statement to the Department, it must be postmarked no later than two weeks before the application deadline date. If you fax your written statement to the Department, we must receive the faxed statement no later than two weeks before the application deadline date.

    Address and mail or fax your statement to: August Martin, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., Room 5049, Washington, DC 20202-2800. FAX: (202) 245-7592.

    Your paper application must be submitted in accordance with the mail or hand delivery instructions described in this notice.

    b. Submission of Paper Applications by Mail

    If you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission requirement, you may mail (through the U.S. Postal Service or a commercial carrier) your application to the Department. You must mail the original and two copies of your application, on or before the application deadline date, to the Department at the following address:

    U.S. Department of Education, Application Control Center, Attention: (CFDA Number 84.250K), LBJ Basement Level 1, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20202-4260.

    You must show proof of mailing consisting of one of the following:

    (1) A legibly dated U.S. Postal Service postmark.

    (2) A legible mail receipt with the date of mailing stamped by the U.S. Postal Service.

    (3) A dated shipping label, invoice, or receipt from a commercial carrier.

    (4) Any other proof of mailing acceptable to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education.

    If you mail your application through the U.S. Postal Service, we do not accept either of the following as proof of mailing:

    (1) A private metered postmark.

    (2) A mail receipt that is not dated by the U.S. Postal Service.

    If your application is postmarked after the application deadline date, we will not consider your application.

    Note:

    The U.S. Postal Service does not uniformly provide a dated postmark. Before relying on this method, you should check with your local post office.

    c. Submission of Paper Applications by Hand Delivery

    If you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission requirement, you (or a courier service) may deliver your paper application to the Department by hand. You must deliver the original and two copies of your application by hand, on or before the application deadline date, to the Department at the following address:

    U.S. Department of Education, Application Control Center, Attention: (CFDA Number 84.250K), 550 12th Street SW., Room 7039, Potomac Center Plaza, Washington, DC 20202-4260.

    The Application Control Center accepts hand deliveries daily between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, except Saturdays, Sundays, and Federal holidays.

    Note for Mail or Hand Delivery of Paper Applications:

    If you mail or hand deliver your application to the Department—

    (1) You must indicate on the envelope and—if not provided by the Department—in Item 11 of the SF 424 the CFDA number, including suffix letter, if any, of the competition under which you are submitting your application; and

    (2) The Application Control Center will mail to you a notification of receipt of your grant application. If you do not receive this notification within 15 business days from the application deadline date, you should call the U.S. Department of Education Application Control Center at (202) 245-6288.

    V. Application Review Information

    1. Selection Criteria: The selection criteria for this competition are from 34 CFR 75.210 of EDGAR and are listed in the application package.

    2. Review and Selection Process: We remind potential applicants that in reviewing applications in any discretionary grant competition, the Secretary may consider, under 34 CFR 75.217(d)(3), the past performance of the applicant in carrying out a previous award, such as the applicant's use of funds, achievement of project objectives, and compliance with grant conditions. The Secretary may also consider whether the applicant failed to submit a timely performance report or submitted a report of unacceptable quality.

    In addition, in making a competitive grant award, the Secretary also requires various assurances including those applicable to Federal civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or activities receiving Federal financial assistance from the Department of Education (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).

    3. Special Conditions: Under 2 CFR 3474.10, the Secretary may impose special conditions and, in appropriate circumstances, high risk conditions on a grant if the applicant or grantee is not financially stable; has a history of unsatisfactory performance; has a financial or other management system that does not meet the standards in 2 CFR part 200; has not fulfilled the conditions of a prior grant; or is otherwise not responsible.

    VI. Award Administration Information

    1. Award Notices: If your application is successful, we notify your U.S. Representative and U.S. Senators and send you a Grant Award Notification (GAN); or we may send you an email containing a link to access an electronic version of your GAN. We may notify you informally, also.

    If your application is not evaluated or not selected for funding, we notify you.

    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements:

    We identify administrative and national policy requirements in the application package and reference these and other requirements in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.

    We reference the regulations outlining the terms and conditions of an award in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice and include these and other specific conditions in the GAN. The GAN also incorporates your approved application as part of your binding commitments under the grant.

    3. Reporting: (a) If you apply for a grant under this competition, you must ensure that you have in place the necessary processes and systems to comply with the reporting requirements in 2 CFR part 170 should you receive funding under the competition. This does not apply if you have an exception under 2 CFR 170.110(b).

    (b) At the end of your project period, you must submit a final performance report, including financial information, as directed by the Secretary. If you receive a multi-year award, you must submit an annual performance report that provides the most current performance and financial expenditure information as directed by the Secretary under 34 CFR 75.118. The Secretary may also require more frequent performance reports under 34 CFR 75.720(c). For specific requirements on reporting, please go to www.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/appforms/appforms.html.

    4. Performance Measures: Under the Government Performance and Results Act of 1993 (GPRA), the Department has established three performance measures for the Vocational Rehabilitation Services Projects for American Indians with Disabilities program. The measures are (1) the percentage of individuals who leave the program with an employment outcome, (2) the percentage of projects that demonstrate an average annual cost per employment outcome of no more than $35,000, and (3) the percentage of projects that demonstrate an average annual cost per participant of no more than $10,000. Each grantee must annually report its performance on these measures through the Annual Progress Reporting Form (APR Form) for the Vocational Rehabilitation Services Projects for American Indians with Disabilities program.

    Job Training and Employment Common Measures: In addition, the Vocational Rehabilitation Services Projects for American Indians with Disabilities APR Form requests data necessary to assess the Vocational Rehabilitation Services Projects for American Indians with Disabilities program's performance on supplemental measures that are comparable to the job training and employment common measures that were developed by the OMB in coordination with Federal agencies with job training programs. Each grantee is required to collect and report data for these supplemental measures as part of the annual performance report requirement, including information on: (1) The number of individuals who, during this reporting period, were still employed three months after achieving an employment outcome, (2) the number of individuals who, during this reporting period, were still employed six months after achieving an employment outcome, (3) the average weekly earnings at entry, and (4) the average weekly earnings of the individuals whose employment outcomes resulted in earnings.

    Note:

    For purposes of this section, the term “employment outcome” means, with respect to an individual—(A) entering or retaining full-time or, if appropriate, part-time competitive employment in the integrated labor market; (B) satisfying the vocational outcome of supported employment; or (C) satisfying any other vocational outcome the Secretary of Education may determine to be appropriate (including satisfying the vocational outcome of customized employment, self-employment, telecommuting, or business ownership). (Section 7(11) of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended (29 U.S.C. 705(11)).

    5. Continuation Awards: In making a continuation award under 34 CFR 75.253, the Secretary considers, among other things: whether a grantee has made substantial progress in achieving the goals and objectives of the project; whether the grantee has expended funds in a manner that is consistent with its approved application and budget; and if the Secretary has established performance measurement requirements, the performance targets in the grantee's approved application. In making a continuation grant, the Secretary also considers whether the grantee is operating in compliance with the assurances in its approved application, including those applicable to Federal civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or activities receiving Federal financial assistance from the Department (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).

    VII. Agency Contact FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    August Martin, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., room 5049, Potomac Center Plaza (PCP), Washington, DC 20202-2800. Telephone: (202) 245-7410 or by email: [email protected]

    If you use a TDD or a TTY, call the FRS, toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.

    VIII. Other Information

    Accessible Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this document and a copy of the application package in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or compact disc) on request to the program contact person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT in section VII of this notice. If you use a TDD or a TTY, call the FRS, toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.

    Electronic Access to This Document: The official version of this document is the document published in the Federal Register. Free Internet access to the official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal Regulations is available via the Federal Digital System at: www.thefederalregister.org/fdsys. At this site you can view this document, as well as all other documents of this Department published in the Federal Register,in text or Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF). To use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at the site.

    You may also access documents of the Department published in the Federal Register by using the article search feature at: www.federalregister.gov. Specifically, through the advanced search feature at this site, you can limit your search to documents published by the Department.

    Dated: April 1, 2015. Sue Swenson, Acting Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07994 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4000-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Update on Reimbursement for Costs of Remedial Action at Active Uranium and Thorium Processing Sites AGENCY:

    Department of Energy.

    ACTION:

    Notice of the Title X claims during fiscal year (FY) 2015.

    SUMMARY:

    This Notice announces the Department of Energy's (DOE) acceptance of claims in FY 2015 from eligible active uranium and thorium processing site licensees for reimbursement under Title X of the Energy Policy Act of 1992 (Pub. L. 102-486, as amended). The Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, FY 2015 (Pub. L. 113-235) provided $10 million for Title X reimbursements and will be made available to the Title X licensees on a prorated basis. The FY 2016 Department of Energy Office of Environmental Management's Congressional Budget Request requests $32.96 million for the Title X Program.

    DATES:

    The closing date for the submission of FY 2015 Title X claims is July 20, 2015. The claims will be processed for payment together with any eligible unpaid approved claim balances from prior years, based on the availability of funds from congressional appropriations. If the total approved claim amounts exceed the available funding, the approved claim amounts will be reimbursed on a prorated basis. All reimbursements are subject to the availability of funds from congressional appropriations.

    ADDRESSES:

    Claims should be forwarded by certified or registered mail, return receipt requested, to U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Legacy Management, Attn: Russel Edge, Title X Program Manager for Review of Reimbursement of Claims, U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Legacy Management, 11025 Dover Street, Suite 1000, Westminster, CO 80021. Two copies of the claim should be included with each submission.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Theresa Kliczewski, Title X Program Coordinator, at (202) 586-3301, of the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Environmental Management, Office of Disposition Planning & Policy.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    DOE published a final rule under 10 CFR part 765 in the Federal Register on May 23, 1994, (59 FR 26714) to carry out the requirements of Title X of the Energy Policy Act of 1992 (sections 1001-1004 of Pub. L. 102-486, 42 U.S.C. 2296a et seq.) and to establish the procedures for eligible licensees to submit claims for reimbursement. DOE amended the final rule on June 3, 2003, (68 FR 32955) to adopt several technical and administrative amendments (e.g., statutory increases in the reimbursement ceilings). Title X requires DOE to reimburse eligible uranium and thorium licensees for certain costs of decontamination, decommissioning, reclamation, and other remedial action incurred by licensees at uranium and thorium processing sites to remediate byproduct material generated resulting from the sales to the United States Government. To be reimbursable, costs of remedial action must be for work which is necessary to comply with applicable requirements of the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act of 1978 (42 U.S.C. 7901 et seq.) or, where appropriate, with requirements established by a State pursuant to a discontinuance agreement under section 274 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (42 U.S.C. 2021). Claims for reimbursement must be supported by reasonable documentation as determined by DOE in accordance with 10 CFR part 765. Funds for reimbursement will be provided from the Uranium Enrichment Decontamination and Decommissioning Fund established at the Department of Treasury pursuant to section 1801 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (42 U.S.C. 2297g). Payment or obligation of funds shall be subject to the requirements of the Anti-Deficiency Act (31 U.S.C. 1341).

    Authority:

    Section 1001-1004 of Public Law 102-486, 106 Stat. 2776 (42 U.S.C. 2296a et seq.).

    Issued in Washington, DC, on April 1, 2015. Theresa Kliczewski, Office of Disposition Planning & Policy, Office of Environmental Management.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07911 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 6450-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings.

    Take notice that the Commission has received the following Natural Gas Pipeline Rate and Refund Report filings:

    Filings Instituting Proceedings

    Docket Numbers: PR15-31-000.

    Applicants: APL SouthTex Transmission Company LP.

    Description: Submits tariff filing per 284.123(e)/.224: TPL SouthTex Transmission Company LP—Name Change to be effective 3/1/2015; Filing Type: 770.

    Filed Date: 3/20/15.

    Accession Number: 20150320-5218.

    Comments/Protests Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/10/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-680-000.

    Applicants: Southern Star Central Gas Pipeline, Inc.

    Description: § 4(d) rate filing per 154.204: Vol 2—Non-Conforming Agreement—Tenaska Marketing Ventures to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/25/15.

    Accession Number: 20150325-5055.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/6/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-681-000.

    Applicants: MIGC LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Order No. 801 Compliance Filing to be effective 4/24/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/25/15.

    Accession Number: 20150325-5081.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/6/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-682-000.

    Applicants: Great Lakes Gas Transmission Limited Par.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Compliance to Order 801—Docket No. RM14-21-000 to be effective 6/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/25/15.

    Accession Number: 20150325-5121.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/6/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-683-000.

    Applicants: TC Offshore LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Compliance to Order 801—Docket No. RM14-21-000 to be effective 6/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/25/15.

    Accession Number: 20150325-5123.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/6/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-684-000.

    Applicants: Pine Prairie Energy Center, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Pine Prairie Energy Center, LLC—Order No. 801 Compliance Filing to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/25/15.

    Accession Number: 20150325-5124.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/6/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-685-000.

    Applicants: SG Resources Mississippi, L.L.C.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: SG Resources Mississippi, L.L.C.—Order No. 801 Compliance Filing to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/25/15.

    Accession Number: 20150325-5125.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/6/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-686-000.

    Applicants: Bluewater Gas Storage, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Bluewater Gas Storage, LLC—Order No. 801 Compliance Filing to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/25/15.

    Accession Number: 20150325-5126.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/6/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-687-000.

    Applicants: Garden Banks Gas Pipeline, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Map Compliance Filing to be effective 5/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/25/15.

    Accession Number: 20150325-5158.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/6/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-688-000.

    Applicants: Mississippi Canyon Gas Pipeline, L.L.C.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Map Compliance Filing to be effective 5/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/25/15.

    Accession Number: 20150325-5159.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/6/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-689-000.

    Applicants: Nautilus Pipeline Company, L.L.C.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Revise System Map in Compliance with RM14-21 to be effective 5/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/25/15.

    Accession Number: 20150325-5167.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/6/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-690-000.

    Applicants: Tuscarora Gas Transmission Company.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Compliance to Order 801—Docket No. RM14-21-000 to be effective 6/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/25/15.

    Accession Number: 20150325-5189.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/6/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-691-000.

    Applicants: Gas Transmission Northwest LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Compliance to Order 801—Docket No. RM14-21-000 to be effective 6/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/25/15.

    Accession Number: 20150325-5218.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/6/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-692-000.

    Applicants: USG Pipeline Company, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Order No. 801 map compliance filing to be effective 4/24/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/25/15.

    Accession Number: 20150325-5220.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/6/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-693-000.

    Applicants: B-R Pipeline Company.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Order No. 801 map compliance filing to be effective 4/24/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/25/15.

    Accession Number: 20150325-5221.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/6/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-694-000.

    Applicants: Guardian Pipeline, L.L.C.

    Description: § 4(d) rate filing per 154.204: PAL Negotiated Rate Agreement—Koch Energy Services, L.L.C. to be effective 3/27/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/25/15.

    Accession Number: 20150325-5238.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/6/15.

    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 date(s). 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: March 26, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07930 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 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: EC15-106-000.

    Applicants: CPV Maryland, LLC, CPV Shore, LLC, CPV Keenan II Renewable Energy Company, LLC, CPV Biomass Holdings, LLC, Benson Power, LLC.

    Description: Application for Authorization Under Section 203 of the Federal Power Act and Request for Waivers, Confidential Treatment, and Expedited Action and Shortened Comment Period of CPV Maryland, LLC, et. al.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5499.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: EC15-107-000.

    Applicants: Public Service Company of New Mexico.

    Description: Application Under Section 203 of the Federal Power Act for Acquisition of Jurisdictional Facilities by Public Service Company of New Mexico.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5516.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric rate filings:

    Docket Numbers: ER15-828-003.

    Applicants: Louisville Gas and Electric Company.

    Description: Tariff Amendment per 35.17(b): Errata Filing Modifications to Attach O Formula Rate to be effective 2/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/30/15.

    Accession Number: 20150330-5533.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/20/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-967-001.

    Applicants: PJM Interconnection, L.L.C., Old Dominion Electric Cooperative.

    Description: Compliance filing per 35: Compliance Filing per 3/17/15 Order in Docket No. ER15-967-000 to be effective 2/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/30/15.

    Accession Number: 20150330-5517.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/20/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1400-000.

    Applicants: Erie Power, LLC.

    Description: Initial rate filing per 35.12 Erie Power Market Based Rate Tariff to be effective 6/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5006.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1401-000.

    Applicants: Southwest Power Pool, Inc.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): 3006 CP Bloom Wind, LLC Generator Interconnection Agreement to be effective 3/2/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5174.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1402-000.

    Applicants: Inertia Power II, LLC.

    Description: Tariff Withdrawal per 35.15: Initial Cancellation to be effective 3/31/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5229.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1403-000.

    Applicants: New York State Electric & Gas Corporation.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): Executed Services Agreement between NYSEG and FirstEnergy to be effective 3/18/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5264.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1404-000.

    Applicants: Mississippi Power Company.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(1): MRA 26 Rate Case Filing to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5336.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1405-000.

    Applicants: The Empire District Electric Company.

    Description: Initial rate filing per 35.12 FERC Elec Rate Schedule No. 10 to be effective 6/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5437.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1406-000.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): 2015-03-31_SA 2766 ATC—City of Elkhorn CFA to be effective 5/31/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5447.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1407-000.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): 2015-03-31_SA 2767 ATC—Manitowoc Public Utilities CFA to be effective 5/31/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5449.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1408-000.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): 2015-03-31_SA 2768 ATC—City of Plymouth CFA to be effective 5/31/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5450.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1409-000.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): 2015-03-31_SA 2769 ATC—City of Reedsburg CFA to be effective 5/31/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5474.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1410-000.

    Applicants: San Diego Gas & Electric Company.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): SDGE TO Tariff Appendix X Formula Modification to be effective 6/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5506.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1411-000.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): 2015-03-31_SA 2770 ATC—Sun Prairie CFA to be effective 5/31/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5513.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1412-000.

    Applicants: Public Service Company of Colorado.

    Description: Application of Public Service Company of Colorado for 2014 Production Formula Rate Charges and Transmission Formula Rate Charges for Post-Retirement Benefits Other than Pensions.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5542.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Take notice that the Commission received the following PURPA 210(m)(3) filings:

    Docket Numbers: QM14-3-000.

    Applicants: Entergy Arkansas, Inc., Entergy Gulf States Louisiana, L.L.C., Entergy Louisiana, LLC, Entergy Mississippi, Inc., Entergy New Orleans, Inc., Entergy Services, Inc., Entergy Texas, Inc, Entergy Services, Inc.

    Description: Supplement to March 27, 2015 Response to Second Deficiency Letter of Entergy Services, Inc., et. al.

    Filed Date: 3/30/15.

    Accession Number: 20150330-5572.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/27/15.

    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: March 31, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07928 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 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: EC15-108-000.

    Applicants: Ingenco Holdings, LLC, Ingenco Wholesale Power, L.L.C., Collegiate Clean Energy, LLC, CCI U.S. Asset Holdings LLC.

    Description: Joint Application for Approval of the Disposition of Jurisdictional Facilities under Section 203 of the FPA of Ingenco Holdings, LLC, Ingenco Wholesale Power, L.L.C., Collegiate Clean Energy, LLC, and CCI U.S. Asset Holdings LLC.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5765.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric rate filings:

    Docket Numbers: ER12-1308-005.

    Applicants: Palouse Wind, LLC.

    Description: Supplement to March 2, 2015 Notice of Non-Material Change in Status of Palouse Wind, LLC.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5751.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER14-2022-001.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: Request for Extension of Waiver of Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5769.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-117-004.

    Applicants: ISO New England Inc., New England Power Pool Participants Committee.

    Description: Compliance filing per 35: Compliance on ER15-117 to be effective 5/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 4/1/15.

    Accession Number: 20150401-5208.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/22/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1413-000.

    Applicants: Union Electric Company.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): Depreciation Rate Filing to be effective 6/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5590.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1414-000.

    Applicants: Southwest Power Pool, Inc.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): Revisions to the Aggregate Study Process to be effective 6/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5604.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1415-000.

    Applicants: PJM Interconnection, L.L.C., The Dayton Power and Light Company.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): Dayton Power & Light Company submits Service Agreement No. 4106 to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5609.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1416-000.

    Applicants: PJM Interconnection, L.L.C., The Dayton Power and Light Company.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): Dayton Power & Light Company submits Service Agreement No. 4105 to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5619.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1417-000.

    Applicants: New England Power Pool Participants Committee.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): April 2015 Membership Filing to be effective 3/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5620.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1418-000.

    Applicants: Adelanto Solar II, LLC.

    Description: Baseline eTariff Filing per 35.1: Adelanto Solar II, LLC Application for Market-Based Rates to be effective 5/30/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5624.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1419-000.

    Applicants: Emera Maine.

    Description: Compliance filing per 35: Order No. 676-H Compliance Filing and Request for Waiver to be effective 5/15/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5628.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1420-000.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): 2015-03-31_Cancellation of Rate Schedule 35 ORCA to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5635.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1421-000.

    Applicants: Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corporation.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): Revision to FERC Rate Schedule 202 to be effective 3/6/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5642.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1422-000.

    Applicants: Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corporation.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): Interconnection Agreement Between the Central Hudson Gas to be effective 3/19/2015.

    Filed Date: 4/1/15.

    Accession Number: 20150401-5011.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/22/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1423-000.

    Applicants: NorthWestern Corporation.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): SA 666 Second Revised—NITSA with Suiza Dairy Group to be effective 7/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 4/1/15.

    Accession Number: 20150401-5224.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/22/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1424-000.

    Applicants: NorthWestern Corporation.

    Description: Tariff Withdrawal per 35.15: Notice of Cancellation of SA 20-SD—EPC with enXco Development Corporation to be effective 4/2/2015.

    Filed Date: 4/1/15.

    Accession Number: 20150401-5229.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/22/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1425-000.

    Applicants: Sierra Pacific Power Company.

    Description: Application of Sierra Pacific Power Company to terminate Firm Point-to-Point Transmission Service Agreements with Mt. Wheeler Power, Inc.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5749.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1426-000.

    Applicants: Public Service Company of New Mexico.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): Modification of Real Power Loss Factor in OATT to be effective 6/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 4/1/15.

    Accession Number: 20150401-5266.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/22/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1427-000.

    Applicants: Calpine New Jersey Generation, LLC.

    Description: Section 205(d) rate filing per 35.13(a)(2)(iii): Revised Annual Revenue Requirement to be effective 1/28/2015.

    Filed Date: 4/1/15.

    Accession Number: 20150401-5386.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/22/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1428-000.

    Applicants: MATL LLP.

    Description: Informational Filing to implement Distribution Mechanism for Operational Penalties of MATL LLP.

    Filed Date: 3/31/15.

    Accession Number: 20150331-5764.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/21/15.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1429-000.

    Applicants: Emera Maine.

    Description: Compliance filing per 35: Emera Maine Compliance Filing to be effective 6/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 4/1/15.

    Accession Number: 20150401-5474.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/22/15.

    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: April 1, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07929 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 14666-000] Lock 11 Hydro Partners; Notice of Preliminary Permit Application Accepted for Filing and Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Competing Applications

    On March 4, 2015, Lock 11 Hydro Partners filed an application for a preliminary permit, pursuant to section 4(f) of the Federal Power Act (FPA), proposing to study the feasibility of the Lock 11 Hydroelectric Station Project (Lock 11 Project or project) to be located at the Kentucky River Authority's Lock and Dam #11, on the Kentucky River, near the town of College Hill, in Estill and Madison Counties, Kentucky. The sole purpose of a preliminary permit, if issued, is to grant the permit holder priority to file a license application during the permit term. A preliminary permit does not authorize the permit holder to perform any land-disturbing activities or otherwise enter upon lands or waters owned by others without the owners' express permission.

    The proposed project would consist of the following: (1) An existing 208-foot-long, 35-foot-high concrete dam with a 52-foot-wide abandoned lock chamber; (2) an existing 19.9-mile-long reservoir having a storage capacity of 6,900-acre-feet; (3) 7 new axial flow turbine-generators installed in the existing lock chamber having a total capacity of 2,800 kilowatts; and (4) a new 1,000-foot-long, 12.47 kilo-Volt transmission line. The project is estimated to generate an average of 11,000 megawatt-hours annually.

    Applicant Contact: Mr. David Brown Kinloch, Shaker Landing Hydro Associates, 414 S. Wenzel Street, Louisville, KY 40204; phone: (502) 589-0975.

    FERC Contact: Michael Spencer; phone: (202) 502-6093.

    Deadline for filing comments, motions to intervene, competing applications (without notices of intent), or notices of intent to file competing applications: 60 days from the issuance of this notice. Competing applications and notices of intent must meet the requirements of 18 CFR 4.36.

    The Commission strongly encourages electronic filing. Please file comments, motions to intervene, notices of intent, and competing applications 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-14666-000.

    More information about this project, including a copy of the application, can be viewed or printed on the “eLibrary” link of Commission's Web site at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/elibrary.asp. Enter the docket number (P-14666) in the docket number field to access the document. For assistance, contact FERC Online Support.

    Dated: April 1, 2015. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07926 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. CP15-14-001] Texas Gas Transmission, LLC; Notice of Filing

    Take notice that on March 30, 2015, Texas Gas Transmission, LLC (Texas Gas) filed an amendment, pursuant to section 7(c) of the Natural Gas Act and Part 157 of the Commission's Regulations, for the Southern Indiana Market Lateral Project extending from Henderson County, Kentucky to Mount Vernon, Posey County, Indiana. The application of the Southern Indiana Market Lateral Project was originally filed on November 12, 2014 in Docket No. CP15-14-000. The amended filing may be viewed on the web at http://www.ferc.gov using the “eLibrary” link. Enter the docket number excluding the last three digits in the docket number field to access the document. For assistance, contact FERC at [email protected] or call toll-free, (886) 208-3676 or TYY, (202) 502-8659.

    Any questions regarding this application should be directed to J. Kyle Stephens, Vice President, Regulatory Affairs & Rates, Texas Gas Transmission, LLC, 9 Greenway Plaza, Suite 2800, Houston, Texas 77046, telephone (713) 479-8059, fax (866) 459-7336, and email: [email protected].

    Texas Gas states that one of two new proposed industrial customers decided to cancel its participation in the project. To accommodate this change, Texas Gas proposes (1) to construct and operate an approximately 30.6-mile, 10-inch-diameter pipeline lateral with a capacity of 53.5 MMcf/day, instead of the originally proposed approximately 29.9 miles, 20-inch-diameter pipeline with a capacity of 166 MMcf/day; and (2) to remove the proposed construction of the metering facilities designed to serve the departing prospective customer. No new landowners are affected by the amended project. The cost of the amended project is approximately $63 million instead of $79.7 million as originally proposed.

    There are two ways to become involved in the Commission's review of this project. First, any person wishing to obtain legal status by becoming a party to the proceedings for this project should, on or before the comment date stated below, file with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, a motion to intervene in accordance with the requirements of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.214 or 385.211) and the Regulations under the NGA (18 CFR 157.10). A person obtaining party status will be placed on the service list maintained by the Secretary of the Commission and will receive copies of all documents filed by the applicant and by all other parties. A party must submit 5 copies of filings made with the Commission and must mail a copy to the applicant and to every other party in the proceeding. Only parties to the proceeding can ask for court review of Commission orders in the proceeding.

    However, a person does not have to intervene in order to have comments considered. The second way to participate is by filing with the Secretary of the Commission, as soon as possible, an original and two copies of comments in support of or in opposition to this project. The Commission will consider these comments in determining the appropriate action to be taken, but the filing of a comment alone will not serve to make the filer a party to the proceeding. The Commission's rules require that persons filing comments in opposition to the project provide copies of their protests only to the party or parties directly involved in the protest.

    Persons who wish to comment only on the environmental review of this project should submit an original and two copies of their comments to the Secretary of the Commission. Environmental commenters will be placed on the Commission's environmental mailing list, will receive copies of any mailed environmental documents, and will be notified of any meetings associated with the Commission's environmental review process. Environmental commenters will not be required to serve copies of filed documents on all other parties. However, the non-party commenters will not receive copies of all documents filed by other parties or issued by the Commission (except for the mailing of environmental documents issued by the Commission) and will not have the right to seek court review of the Commission's final order.

    Motions to intervene, protests and comments may be filed electronically via the internet in lieu of paper; see, 18 CFR 385.2001(a)(1)(iii) and the instructions on the Commission's Web site under the “e-Filing” link. The Commission strongly encourages electronic filings.

    Comment Date: 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time on April 22, 2015.

    Dated: April 1, 2015. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07923 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings

    Take notice that the Commission has received the following Natural Gas Pipeline Rate and Refund Report filings:

    Filings Instituting Proceedings

    Docket Numbers: RP14-1083-000.

    Applicants: Texas Gas Transmission, LLC.

    Description: eTariff filing per 154.206: Motion to Place Tariff Record into Effect 4-1-2015 to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5071.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-695-000.

    Applicants: Cameron Interstate Pipeline, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Cameron Interstate Pipeline Order No. 801 Compliance Filing to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/26/15.

    Accession Number: 20150326-5074.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/7/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-696-000.

    Applicants: LA Storage, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: LA Storage FERC Order No. 801 Compliance Filing to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/26/15.

    Accession Number: 20150326-5080.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/7/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-697-000.

    Applicants: Mississippi Hub, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Mississippi Hub Order No. 801 Compliance Filing to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/26/15.

    Accession Number: 20150326-5082.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/7/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-698-000.

    Applicants: Pine Needle LNG Company, LLC.

    Description: Section 4(d) rate filing per 154.403(d)(2): 2015 Annual Fuel and Electric Power Tracker Filing to be effective 5/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/26/15.

    Accession Number: 20150326-5086.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/7/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-699-000.

    Applicants: Gulf South Pipeline Company, LP.

    Description: Section 4(d) rate filing per 154.204: Amendment to Neg Rate Agmt (EOG 34687-27) to be effective 3/26/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/26/15.

    Accession Number: 20150326-5126.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/7/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-700-000.

    Applicants: Elba Express Company, L.L.C.

    Description: Elba Express Company, L.L.C. submits 2015 Annual Interruptible Revenue Crediting Report.

    Filed Date: 3/26/15.

    Accession Number: 20150326-5181.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/7/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-701-000.

    Applicants: Florida Gas Transmission Company, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Map Filing in Compliance with Order No. 801 to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5065.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-702-000.

    Applicants: Panhandle Eastern Pipe Line Company, LP.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Map Filing in Compliance with Order No. 801 to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5066.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-703-000.

    Applicants: Trunkline Gas Company, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Map Filing in Compliance with Order No. 801 to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5069.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-704-000.

    Applicants: Southwest Gas Storage Company.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Map Filing in Compliance with Order No. 801 to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5070.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-705-000.

    Applicants: Sea Robin Pipeline Company, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Map Filing in Compliance with Order No. 801 to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5072.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-706-000.

    Applicants: Lake Charles LNG Company, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Map Filing in Compliance with Order No. 801 to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5073.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-707-000.

    Applicants: Southern Star Central Gas Pipeline, Inc.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Maps Filing in Compliance with Order 801 to be effective 5/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5087.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-708-000.

    Applicants: Empire Pipeline, Inc.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Order No. 801 CF (Map Link) to be effective 5/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5094.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-709-000.

    Applicants: Texas Eastern Transmission, LP.

    Description: Section 4(d) rate filing per 154.204: Negotiated Rates—Chevron Apr2015 TEAM2014 releases to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5107.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-710-000.

    Applicants: Northern Border Pipeline Company.

    Description: Section 4(d) rate filing per 154.403(d)(2): Compressor Usage Surcharge 2015 to be effective 5/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5131.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-711-000.

    Applicants: NGO Transmission, Inc.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: NGO Transmission Order No. 801 Compliance Filing to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5134.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-712-000.

    Applicants: Paiute Pipeline Company.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: RM14-21 Compliance Map Filing to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5166.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-713-000.

    Applicants: Bison Pipeline LLC.

    Description: Bison Pipeline LLC submits 2015 Company Use Gas Annual Report.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5181.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-714-000.

    Applicants: Equitrans, L.P.

    Description: Section 4(d) rate filing per 154.204: Negotiated Capacity Release Agreements—3/27/2015 to be effective 3/27/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5193.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-715-000.

    Applicants: Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company.

    Description: Section 4(d) rate filing per 154.204: Non-Conforming Agreement—Woodbridge/CPV to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5241.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-716-000.

    Applicants: Enable Gas Transmission, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Order No. 801 Compliance Filing—System Map to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5258.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-717-000.

    Applicants: Enable Mississippi River Transmission, L.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Order No. 801 Compliance Filing—System Map to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5255.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Docket Numbers: RP15-718-000.

    Applicants: Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company.

    Description: Section 4(d) rate filing per 154.204: Update List of Non-Coforming Service Agreements (Woodbridge/CPV) to be effective 4/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5310.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    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.

    Filings in Existing Proceedings

    Docket Numbers: RP15-681-001.

    Applicants: MIGC LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing per 154.203: Amendment to Docket No. RP15-681-000 to be effective 4/24/2015.

    Filed Date: 3/27/15.

    Accession Number: 20150327-5336.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 4/8/15.

    Any person desiring to protest in any of the above proceedings must file in accordance with Rule 211 of the Commission's Regulations (18 CFR 385.211) on or before 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date.

    The filings are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the links or querying the docket number.

    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: March 30, 2015. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07931 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. CP15-118-000] Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company, LLC; Notice of Application

    Take notice that on March 23, 2015, Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company, LLC (Transco), 2800 Post Oak Boulevard, Houston, Texas 77056, filed in the above referenced docket an application pursuant to section 7(c) of the Natural Gas Act (NGA), and Part 157 of the Commission's regulations requesting authorization to construct and operate the Virginia Southside Expansion Project II (Project). Specifically, the Project will enable Transco to provide 250,000 dekatherms per day (Dth/d) of incremental firm transportation service to one shipper, Virginia Power Services Energy Corp., Inc., all as more fully set forth in the application which is on file with the Commission and open to public inspection. The filing is available for review at the Commission in the Public Reference Room or may be viewed on the Commission's Web site web at http://www.ferc.gov using the “eLibrary” link. Enter the docket number excluding the last three digits in the docket number field to access the document. For assistance, contact FERC at [email protected] or call toll-free, (886) 208-3676 or TYY, (202) 502-8659.

    Any questions concerning this application may be directed to Derrick Hughey, Senior Regulatory Analyst, P.O. Box 1396, Houston, Texas 77251, by telephone at (713) 215-2450.

    Transco states that, the firm transportation service on the Project will be rendered by Transco pursuant to Rate Schedule FT of Transco's FERC Gas Tariff and Transco's blanket certificate under Part 284(G) of the Commission's Regulations. Transco states that the Project will involve the construction and operation of 4.33 miles of new 24-inch diameter pipeline facilities, 21,830 horsepower of gas turbine driven compression, 25,000 horsepower of electric motor driven compression and the construction or modification of associated aboveground and underground facilities. The cost of the project will be approximately $190.8 million.

    Pursuant to section 157.9 of the Commission's rules (18 CFR 157.9), within 90 days of this Notice, the Commission staff will either: Complete its environmental assessment (EA) and place it into the Commission's public record (eLibrary) for this proceeding; or issue a Notice of Schedule for Environmental Review. If a Notice of Schedule for Environmental Review is issued, it will indicate, among other milestones, the anticipated date for the Commission staff's issuance of the final environmental impact statement (FEIS) or EA for this proposal. The filing of the EA in the Commission's public record for this proceeding or the issuance of a Notice of Schedule for Environmental Review will serve to notify federal and state agencies of the timing for the completion of all necessary reviews, and the subsequent need to complete all federal authorizations within 90 days of the date of issuance of the Commission staff's FEIS or EA.

    There are two ways to become involved in the Commission's review of this project. First, any person wishing to obtain legal status by becoming a party to the proceedings for this project should, on or before the comment date stated below file with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, a motion to intervene in accordance with the requirements of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.214 or 385.211) and the Regulations under the NGA (18 CFR 157.10). A person obtaining party status will be placed on the service list maintained by the Secretary of the Commission and will receive copies of all documents filed by the applicant and by all other parties. A party must submit five copies of filings made in the proceeding with the Commission and must mail a copy to the applicant and to every other party. Only parties to the proceeding can ask for court review of Commission orders in the proceeding.

    However, a person does not have to intervene in order to have comments considered. The second way to participate is by filing with the Secretary of the Commission, as soon as possible, an original and two copies of comments in support of or in opposition to this project. The Commission will consider these comments in determining the appropriate action to be taken, but the filing of a comment alone will not serve to make the filer a party to the proceeding. The Commission's rules require that persons filing comments in opposition to the project provide copies of their protests only to the party or parties directly involved in the protest.

    Persons who wish to comment only on the environmental review of this project should submit an original and two copies of their comments to the Secretary of the Commission. Environmental commentors will be placed on the Commission's environmental mailing list, will receive copies of the environmental documents, and will be notified of meetings associated with the Commission's environmental review process. Environmental commentors will not be required to serve copies of filed documents on all other parties. However, the non-party commentors will not receive copies of all documents filed by other parties or issued by the Commission (except for the mailing of environmental documents issued by the Commission) and will not have the right to seek court review of the Commission's final order.

    The Commission strongly encourages electronic filings of comments, 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.

    Comment Date: April 22, 2015.

    Dated: April 1, 2015. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07924 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 10852-007] Richard Bertea; Notice of Termination of License (Minor Project) By Implied Surrender and Soliciting Comments and Protests

    Take notice that the following hydroelectric proceeding has been initiated by the Commission:

    a. Type of Proceeding: Termination of license by implied surrender

    b. Project No.: 10852-007

    c. Date Initiated: April 1, 2015

    d. Licensee: Richard Bertea

    e. Name and Location of Project: The Ace Ranch Project, located on the West Fork Carson River in Alpine County, California.

    f. Filed Pursuant to: Standard Article 16

    g. Licensee Contact Information: Mr. Richard Bertea, 369 San Miguel Dr. Suite 300 Newport Beach, CA 92660, (714) 640-1982.

    h. FERC Contact: M. Joseph Fayyad, (202) 502-8759, [email protected]

    i. Deadline for filing comments and protests is 30 days from the issuance date of this notice by the Commission. Please file your submittal electronically via the Internet (eFiling) in lieu of paper. Please refer to the instructions on the Commission's Web site under http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling.asp and filing instructions in the Commission's Regulations at 18 CFR 385.2001(a)(1)(iii). To assist you with eFilings you should refer to the submission guidelines document at http://www.ferc.gov/help/submission-guide/user-guide.pdf. In addition, certain filing requirements have statutory or regulatory formatting and other instructions. You should refer to a list of these “qualified documents” at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling/filing.pdf. You must include your name and contact information at the end of your comments. Please include the project number (10852-007) on any documents or motions filed. The Commission strongly encourages electronic filings; otherwise, you should submit an original and seven copies of any submittal to the following address: The Secretary, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Mail Code: DHAC, PJ-12, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    j. Description of Project Facilities: (a) An existing diversion dam on the West Fork Carson River with a headgate structure; (b) the Heimsoth Upper West Ditch, discharging into (c) an irrigation-stock pond; (d) a 5-foot-high concrete intake box with a fish-debris screen; (e) two 850-foot-long penstocks, one 8 inches and one 16 inches in diameter; (f) a 28-foot by 12-foot wood frame powerhouse containing two generating units rated at 80-kilowatts and 15-kilowatts, operating under a head of 130 feet; (g) an 800-foot-long, 480-volt underground transmission line, connecting to the reversible ranch meter, the point of connection with the existing Sierra Pacific Power Company line; and (h) related facilities.

    k. Description of Proceeding: The licensee is in violation of Article 16 of its license, which was granted November 30, 1990 (53 FERC ¶ 62,202). Article 16 states in part: If the Licensee shall abandon or discontinue good faith operation of the project or refuse or neglect to comply with the terms of the license and the lawful orders of the Commission, the Commission will deem it to be the intent of the Licensee to surrender the license.

    Commission records indicate that the project was transferred to Mr. Richard Bertea by a Commission order issued May 6, 1991 (55 FERC ¶ 62,108). Since that time, the licensee (Mr. Bertea) has sold the project to Bently Family Limited Partnership around January 1999, without getting our approval for a transfer of license. Since then, the project stopped operating around the end of 1999. The Commission's San Francisco Regional Office has had several correspondences with the new owner and requested a plan and schedule to return the project to operation and to complete a formal request for a transfer of the license to the Bently Family Limited Partnership. Nothing was filed. On January 20, 2015, staff sent the licensee (Mr. Bertea), to his mailing address on record, a letter requiring the filing within 30 days, of an application for a transfer of license and a plan and schedule for restoring the operation of the project or an application to surrender the project's license. Staff also sent a copy of the letter to the Bently Family Limited Partnership. The letter stated that if no response is filed, the Commission will take action to terminate license by implied surrender pursuant to the Commission's regulations at 18 CFR 6.4. The letter to the licensee was returned due to lack of a forwarding address. Nothing was filed.

    l. This notice is available for review and reproduction at the Commission in the Public Reference Room, Room 2A, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426. The filing may also be viewed on the Commission's Web site at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/elibrary.asp. Enter the Docket number (P-10852-007) excluding the last three digits in the docket number field to access the notice. 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 toll-free 1-866-208-3676 or email [email protected] For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    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 and Protests—Anyone may submit comments or protests in accordance with the requirements of Rules of Practice and Procedure, 18 CFR 385.210 and 385.211. In determining the appropriate action to take, the Commission will consider all protests filed. Any protests must be received on or before the specified deadline date for the particular proceeding.

    o. Filing and Service of Responsive Documents—Any filing must (1) bear in all capital letters the title “COMMENTS or “PROTEST,” as applicable; (2) set forth in the heading the project number of the proceeding to which the filing responds; (3) furnish the name, address, and telephone number of the person commenting or protesting; and (4) otherwise comply with the requirements of 18 CFR 385.2001 through 385.2005. All comments or protests must set forth their evidentiary basis and otherwise comply with the requirements of 18 CFR 4.34(b). All comments or protests should relate to project works which are the subject of the termination of license. A copy of any protest must be served upon each representative of the licensee specified in item g above. A copy of all other filings in reference to this notice 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.

    p. Agency Comments—Federal, state, and local agencies are invited to file comments on the described proceeding. If any agency does not file comments within the time specified for filing comments, it will be presumed to have no comments.

    Dated: April 1, 2015. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07925 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 6717-01-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [FRL-9925-65-OAR] Notice of Availability of Draft Scientific Assessment for Public Comment AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice of availability of draft scientific assessment for public comment.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is publishing this document on behalf of the United States Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) to announce the availability of the Draft Impacts of Climate Change on Human Health in the United States: A Scientific Assessment for a sixty-day public review. Comments will be carefully reviewed by the relevant chapter author teams. Following revision and further review, a revised draft will undergo final federal interagency clearance.

    DATES:

    Comments on this draft scientific assessment must be received by 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on June 8, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    The Draft USGCRP Climate and Health Assessment is available at http://www.globalchange.gov/health-assessment where comments from the public will be accepted electronically. Comments may be submitted only online at this address; instructions for submitting are on this Web site.

    All comments received through this process will be considered by the relevant chapter authors without knowledge of the commenters' identities. When the final assessment is issued, the comments and the commenters' names, along with the authors' responses, will become part of the public record and made available on http://www.globalchange.gov/health-assessment. Information submitted by a commenter as part of the registration process (such as an email address) will NOT be disclosed publicly.

    The final USGCRP Climate and Health Assessment will be available at http://www.globalchange.gov/health-assessment.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Allison Crimmins, Coordinator for the USGCRP Climate and Health Assessment, EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW. (6207-A), Washington, DC 20460 (telephone number: 202-343-9170 or email address: [email protected]) during normal business hours of 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Eastern time, Monday through Friday, or visit http://www.globalchange.gov/health-assessment.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This document entitled Draft Impacts of Climate Change on Human Health in the United States: A Scientific Assessment has been developed under the auspices of The Interagency Group on Climate Change and Human Health (CCHHG), a working group of the U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP), as part of the ongoing efforts of USGCRP's National Climate Assessment (NCA) and as called for under the President's Climate Action Plan. The draft assessment was written by federal employees, contractors, or affiliates who were selected from author nominations based on their demonstrated subject matter expertise, relevant publications, and knowledge of specific topics designated in the draft outline. This draft USGCRP Climate and Health Assessment responds to the 1990 Congressional mandate to periodically produce National Climate Assessments and to assist the nation in understanding, assessing, predicting, and responding to human-induced and natural processes of global change.

    The purpose of this draft assessment is to provide a comprehensive, evidence-based, and, where possible, quantitative estimation of observed and projected climate change related health impacts in the United States. It is intended to inform public health officials, disaster response planners, multi-sector policy and decision makers, and other stakeholders about the risks that climate change presents to human health.

    The focus of this draft assessment is the health impacts of climate change in the United States. The assessment does not include detailed discussions of climate mitigation, adaptation, or economic valuation, nor does it make policy recommendations. Similarly, while this assessment does not focus on health research needs or gaps, brief insights on research needs gained while conducting this assessment will be included at the end of each chapter.

    The USGCRP welcomes all comments on the content of its draft assessment at http://www.globalchange.gov/health-assessment.

    Dated: March 9, 2015. Sarah Dunham, Director, Office of Atmospheric Programs.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07629 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 6560-50-P
    FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION Federal Advisory Committee Act; Downloadable Security Technology Advisory Committee AGENCY:

    Federal Communications Commission.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, this notice advises interested persons that the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC or Commission) Downloadable Security Technology Advisory Committee (DSTAC) will hold a meeting on April 21, 2015. At the meeting, the committee will receive reports from the Current Commercial Requirements Working Group and the Technology and Preferred Architectures Working Groups, establish the next set of working groups, discuss draft outlines for the committee report, and discuss any other topics related to the DSTAC's work that may arise.

    DATES:

    April 21, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Federal Communications Commission, Room TW-C305 (Commission Meeting Room), 445 12th Street SW., Washington, DC 20554.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For additional information on this proceeding, contact Brendan Murray, [email protected], of the Media Bureau, Policy Division, (202) 418-1573 or Nancy Murphy, [email protected], of the Media Bureau, (202) 418-1043.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The meeting will be held on April 21, 2015, from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the Commission Meeting Room of the Federal Communications Commission, Room TW-C305, 445 12th Street SW., Washington, DC 20554.

    The DSTAC is a Federal Advisory Committee that will “identify, report, and recommend performance objectives, technical capabilities, and technical standards of a not unduly burdensome, uniform, and technology- and platform-neutral software-based downloadable security system.”

    The meeting on April 21, 2015 will be the third meeting of the DSTAC. The FCC will attempt to accommodate as many attendees as possible; however, admittance will be limited to seating availability. The Commission will provide audio and/or video coverage of the meeting over the Internet from the FCC's Web page at http://www.fcc.gov/live. The public may submit written comments before the meeting to Brendan Murray, DSTAC Designated Federal Officer, by email to [email protected] or by U.S. Postal Service Mail to 445 12th Street SW., Room 4-A726, Washington, DC 20554.

    Open captioning will be provided for this event. Other reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities are available upon request. Requests for such accommodations should be submitted via email to [email protected] or by calling the Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau at (202) 418-0530 (voice), (202) 418-0432 (tty). Such requests should include a detailed description of the accommodation needed. In addition, please include a way the FCC can contact you if it needs more information. Please allow at least five days' advance notice; last-minute requests will be accepted, but may be impossible to fill.

    Federal Communications Commission. Marlene H. Dortch, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07842 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 6712-01-P
    FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM Notice of Proposals To Engage in Permissible Nonbanking Activities or To Acquire Companies That Are Engaged in Permissible Nonbanking Activities; Correction

    This notice corrects two notices (FR Doc. 2015-07170 and FR Doc. 2015-07158) both published on page 16682 of the issue for Monday, March 30, 2015.

    Under the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago heading, the entries for First Business Financial Services, Inc., Madison, Wisconsin, are revised to read as follows:

    A. Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago (Colette A. Fried, Assistant Vice President) 230 South LaSalle Street, Chicago, Illinois 60690-1414:

    1. First Business Financial Services, Inc., Madison, Wisconsin; to engage de novo in certain community development activities by making a qualifying community welfare investment in a fund of funds, pursuant to section 225.28(b)(12)(i).

    Comments on this application must be received by April 14, 2015.

    Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, April 2, 2015. Michael J. Lewandowski, Associate Secretary of the Board.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07900 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 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 section 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 April 22, 2015.

    A. Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis (Jacquelyn K. Brunmeier, Assistant Vice President) 90 Hennepin avenue, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55480-0291:

    1. Eric Ross Allen, Los Angeles, California; to acquire voting shares of Rum River Bancorporation, Inc., Milaca, Minnesota, and thereby indirectly acquire voting shares of The First National Bank of Milaca, Milaca, Minnesota.

    Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, April 2, 2015. Michael J. Lewandowski, Associate Secretary of the Board.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07902 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6210-01-P
    FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM Proposed Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment Request AGENCY:

    Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.

    SUMMARY:

    The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (Board), under authority delegated by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), proposes to amend its reporting form FR 2420 to expand the number of respondents and to collect additional data elements, in order to facilitate the Board's ability to carry out its monetary policy and supervisory responsibilities.

    On June 15, 1984, OMB delegated to the Board its authority under the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA), to approve and to assign OMB control numbers to collection of information requests and requirements conducted or sponsored by the Board. Board-approved collections of information are incorporated into the official OMB inventory of currently approved collections of information. Copies of the Paperwork Reduction Act Submission, supporting statements and approved collection of information instruments are placed into OMB's public docket files. The Board may not conduct or sponsor, and the respondent is not required to respond to, an information collection that has been extended, revised, or implemented on or after October 1, 1995, unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. A copy of the PRA OMB submission, including the proposed reporting form and instructions, supporting statement, and other documentation will be placed into OMB's public docket files, once approved. These documents will also be made available on the Federal Reserve Board's public Web site at: http://www.federalreserve.gov/apps/reportforms/review.aspx or may be requested from the Federal Reserve Board Acting Clearance Officer, whose name appears below.

    DATES:

    Comments must be submitted on or before June 8, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, identified by FR 2420, by any of the following methods:

    Agency Web site: http://www.federalreserve.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments at http://www.federalreserve.gov/apps/foia/proposedregs.aspx.

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

    Email: [email protected] Include OMB number in the subject line of the message.

    FAX: (202) 452-3819 or (202) 452-3102.

    Mail: Robert deV. Frierson, Secretary, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, 20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20551.

    All public comments are available from the Board's Web site at http://www.federalreserve.gov/apps/foia/proposedregs.aspx as submitted, unless modified for technical reasons. Accordingly, your comments will not be edited to remove any identifying or contact information. Public comments may also be viewed electronically or in paper form in Room 3515, 1801 K Street (between 18th and 19th Streets NW.) Washington, DC 20006 between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. on weekdays.

    Additionally, commenters may send a copy of their comments to the OMB Desk Officer, Shagufta Ahmed, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, New Executive Office Building, Room 10235 725 17th Street NW., Washington, DC 20503 or by fax to (202) 395-6974.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Federal Reserve Board Acting Clearance Officer, Mark Tokarski, Office of the Chief Data Officer, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, Washington, DC 20551 (202) 452-3829. Telecommunications Device for the Deaf (TDD) users may contact (202) 263-4869, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, Washington, DC 20551.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Request for Comment on Information Collection Proposal

    The following information collection, which is being handled by the Board under OMB-delegated authority, has received initial Board approval and is hereby published for comment. At the end of the comment period, the proposed information collection, along with an analysis of comments and recommendations received, will be submitted to the Board for final approval under OMB-delegated authority. Comments are invited on the following:

    a. Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the Federal Reserve's functions; including whether the information has practical utility;

    b. The accuracy of the Board's estimate of the burden of the proposed information collection, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;

    c. Ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected;

    d. Ways to minimize the burden of information collection on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology; and

    e. Estimates of capital or start-up costs and costs of operation, maintenance, and purchase of services to provide information.

    Proposal to approve under OMB-delegated authority the extension for three years, with revision, of the following report:

    Report title: Report of Selected Money Market Rates.

    Agency form number: FR 2420.

    OMB control number: 7100-0357.

    Frequency: Daily.

    Proposed Reporters: Domestically chartered commercial banks and thrifts that have $15 billion or more in total assets, or $5 billion or more in assets and meet certain unsecured borrowing activity thresholds; U.S. branches and agencies of foreign banks with total third-party assets of $2.5 billion or more.

    Estimated annual reporting hours: Commercial banks and thrifts—42,300 hours; U.S. branches and agencies of foreign banks—35,100 hours; International Banking Facilities—19,750 hours; Significant banking organizations—900 hours.

    Estimated average hours per response: Commercial banks and thrifts—1.8 hours; U.S. branches and agencies of foreign banks—1.8 hours; International Banking Facilities—1.0 hour; Significant banking organizations—1.8 hours.

    Number of respondents: Commercial banks and thrifts—94; U.S. branches and agencies of foreign banks—78; International Banking Facilities—79; Significant banking organizations—2.

    General description of report: The FR 2420 is a mandatory report that is authorized by sections 9 and 11 of the Federal Reserve Act (12 U.S.C. 324 and 248(a)(2)), sections 7(c)(2) and 8(a) of the International Banking Act (12 U.S.C. 3105(c)(2) and 3106(a)), and section 5(c) of the Bank Holding Company Act (12 U.S.C. 1844(c)(1)(A)). Individual respondent data are regarded as confidential under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) (5 U.S.C. 552(b)(4)).

    Abstract: The FR 2420 is a transaction-based report that currently collects daily liability data on federal funds transactions, Eurodollar transactions, and certificates of deposit (CDs) from (1) domestically chartered commercial banks and thrifts that have $26 billion or more in total assets and (2) U.S. branches and agencies of foreign banks with total third-party assets of $900 million or more. FR 2420 data are used in the analysis of current money market conditions and will allow the Federal Reserve Bank of New York to calculate and publish interest rate statistics for selected money market instruments.

    Current Proposal: The Board seeks to amend the FR 2420 by altering reporting entity criteria, by changing certain definitions and reporting requirements, and by collecting additional data elements, as set forth more fully below under “Summary of Proposed Revisions.” These amendments would facilitate the Federal Reserve's ability to carry out its monetary policy and supervisory responsibilities in several important respects.

    First, the proposed expanded data collection would improve unsecured money market monitoring and augment the ability of the Federal Reserve to analyze these markets and implement monetary policy objectives established by the Board and the Federal Open Market Committee.

    Second, the proposed expanded data collection would provide broader and more detailed data for purposes of calculating the Federal Funds Effective Rate (FFER). The FR 2420 collection captures a greater share of federal funds activity than the brokered data that currently is used to construct the FFER, as depository institutions report both trades executed through brokers and those negotiated directly between counterparties. The data also allow for greater insight into the transactions underlying the federal funds rate, supporting a robust calculation process.

    The revised collection also would allow for the publication of an overnight bank funding rate that is calculated using transactions in both federal funds and Eurodollars. This additional rate will be published to increase the amount and quality of information available to the public about the overnight funding costs of U.S.-based banking offices.1

    1 A more detailed description of the plans to change to the calculation process for the federal funds rate and publish the overnight bank funding rate can be found at: http://www.newyorkfed.org/markets/opolicy/operating_policy_150202.html.

    Third, the proposed expanded data collection would provide an important source of information on individual depository institutions' borrowing rates, which is necessary for more effective monitoring of firm-specific liquidity risks for purposes of supervisory surveillance. Specifically, the amended FR 2420, as proposed, would provide complementary rate information that will not be collected going forward by either the Complex Institution Liquidity Monitoring Report (FR 2052a; OMB No. 7100-0361) or the Liquidity Monitoring Report (FR 2052b; OMB No. 7100-0361). These FR 2052 reports currently collect consolidated liquidity information on depository institutions' funding activities, and a limited amount of information on borrowing rates. Going forward, however, information contained on the FR 2420 would replace certain information currently gathered on the FR 2052a, as these data elements would be dropped from the FR 2052a collection. Pricing information on the FR 2052b will not change, as that data is not similar to FR 2420 data. The amended FR 2420 as proposed would offer greater insight on the borrowing costs for these liabilities.

    Proposed Effective Date: The Board proposes to implement the amended FR 2420 as of September 9, 2015.

    Summary of Proposed Revisions I. Reporting Criteria

    As specified below, the Board is proposing several changes to the reporting criteria, including (a) lowering the asset-size threshold for domestic depository institutions to report on the FR 2420, (b) raising the asset-size threshold for FBOs to report on the FR 2420, (c) adding an activity-based reporting criterion to capture meaningful activity of domestic depository institutions, (d) requiring FBOs to include the Eurodollar borrowings for certain Cayman or Nassau branches, and (e) requiring all FR 2420 respondents to submit separate reports for their International Banking Facilities (IBFs).

    Under this proposal, exceptions to the reporting criteria may be made for those institutions that meet the asset size threshold but that demonstrate that they have an ongoing business model that results in a negligible amount of activity in these markets. In addition, an institution that did not meet the asset size threshold at the time of the most recent asset threshold review may be required to begin reporting transactions on the FR 2420 if its transactions consistently place it within the threshold levels.

    a. U.S. Bank Asset Size Threshold

    The Board proposes to reduce the current asset threshold for domestic depository institutions to report on the FR 2420 from $26 billion or more in total assets to $15 billion or more in total assets. An important segment of federal funds activity that occurs at relatively high rates is not currently captured on the FR 2420 reporting sample because this activity is undertaken by domestic depository institutions with total assets that fall below the $26 billion reporting threshold. Expanding the current FR 2420 reporting panel to capture this activity is necessary to enhance the representativeness of the data collection, in particular for purposes of calculating the FFER. This proposed lower threshold is intended to balance the need for more comprehensive data against the reporting burden to the affected depository institutions. Specifically, it is anticipated that the proposed lower threshold would add approximately 34 domestic banks to the pool of FR 2420 respondents.

    b. FBO Asset Size Threshold

    The Board proposes to increase the asset size threshold for FBOs to report on the FR 2420 from $900 million in third-party assets to $2.5 billion in third-party assets. This increased threshold would reduce the reporting panel by roughly 31 FBOs, many of which have reported a negligible amount of unsecured borrowing activity each day on the FR 2420. This proposal is intended to reduce reporting burden for these institutions.

    c. U.S. Bank Activity Threshold

    The Board proposes to require domestic depository institutions with total assets ranging from $5 billion to $15 billion and federal funds activity of more than $200 million on more than two days during the preceding three months to report on all parts of the FR 2420. It is anticipated that there would be a modest number of institutions added to the FR 2420 reporting panel under this proposal. This activity threshold is intended to capture only domestic depository institutions in the specified asset range that are active borrowers in federal funds.

    d. Managed and Controlled Cayman and Nassau Branches

    The Board proposes to require FBOs to include the Eurodollar borrowings for any “managed and controlled” branches located in the Cayman Islands or Nassau, Bahamas (Cayman and Nassau branches) with more than $2 billion in total assets on the FBO's FR 2420 report.2 “Managed and controlled” branches are those branches for which the FBO files an FFIEC 002S (OMB No. 7100-0032). Cayman and Nassau branches within this specification are maintained by both domestic depository institutions and FBOs to support funding for their U.S. operations with Eurodollar liabilities. The FR 2420 currently captures Cayman and Nassau branch activity of a domestic parent with over $2 billion in assets, but not Cayman and Nassau branch activity of FBOs where those branches are managed and controlled by the FBO's New York branch. The data proposed to be reported on the FR 2420 from these branches are believed to represent a significant portion of the Eurodollar trading activity executed in the U.S. and are an important source of information on the funding activity of foreign banks' U.S. operations.

    2 Currently, all “managed and controlled” branches of FBOs reporting on the FR 2420 are located in the Cayman Islands or Nassau, Bahamas. However, the Board may determine that a FBO branch outside of these two locations but within the Caribbean generally should report on the FR 2420 if the majority of the responsibility for business decisions, including but not limited to decisions with regard to lending or asset management or funding or liability management, or the responsibility for recordkeeping in respect of assets or liabilities for that FBO branch, resides at a FBO that reports on the FR 2420.

    e. International Banking Facilities

    The Board proposes to require all FR 2420 respondents to submit a separate report (Schedule B only) for the Eurodollar borrowings of their IBFs. IBFs enable U.S. depository institutions to take foreign deposits (Eurodollars) in a U.S. office. The Board proposes to capture the Eurodollar activity of these entities on Schedule B of the FR 2420. The borrowings by these entities currently are believed to represent a modest proportion of overall Eurodollar activity; however, IBFs can be an important element of the overnight Eurodollar market facilitating transactions with international financial and official institutions.

    II. Proposed Revisions Applicable to All Parts of the FR 2420 a. Counterparty Type

    The Board proposes to add a reporting field to the FR 2420 that would require respondents to identify counterparties by seven specified “counterparty type” categories. Understanding counterparty types would improve the assessments of which types of firms are providing funding to depository institutions. Information on counterparty type would be particularly critical during times of stress, when certain lender groups may reduce available funding. The following are the proposed FR 2420 counterparty designations, which are based on Call Report and FR 2900 definitions.3 The number of counterparty designations used for each schedule of the FR 2420 varies based on the definition of the different transaction types:

    3 The definition for non-financial corporates is taken from the FR 2052 Liquidity Monitoring reports.

    • U.S. depository institutions (includes their foreign branches and IBFs)

    • U.S. branches and agencies of FBOs

    • Foreign banks (includes IBFs of FBOs and Cayman and Nassau branches “managed and controlled” by the FBOs.)

    • Non-depository financial institutions, not including federally-sponsored lending agencies

    • Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs)

    • Non-financial corporates

    • Other

    b. Trade Date and Settlement Date

    The Board proposes to add “trade date” and “settlement date” report fields to the FR 2420. Capturing a trade date field would affirm the actual trade date and would help to ensure the accuracy of other report elements. Settlement date is necessary to calculate the settlement period for forward starting transactions.

    c. Forward Starting Transactions

    Currently, the FR 2420 only requires reporting of transactions settling on a spot basis. For federal funds and Eurodollars, spot basis settlement represents same-day settlement and, for CDs, two-day forward settlement. In order to capture the full complement of money market activity, the Board proposes to require reporting of transactions that settle on dates that do not conform to the spot convention; that is, to require reporting of transactions that settle beyond the day of trade execution for federal funds and Eurodollar transactions and on days other than two days after execution for CD transactions.

    III. Proposed Revisions Applicable to FR 2420 Part A (Federal Funds)

    Currently, Part A of the FR 2420 report requires respondents to report all unsecured borrowings of U.S. dollars made to the reporting institution's U.S. offices on the report date, less deposits (as defined in the Call Report), debt instruments, and repurchase agreements. The Board proposes to amend the definition of “federal funds” applicable to the FR 2420 to correspond to a narrower set of transactions that is consistent with the provisions of the Board's Regulation D (Reserve Requirements of Depository Institutions, 12 CFR part 204). Under the current definition, some FR 2420 respondents are reporting domestic borrowing transactions as federal funds borrowing that do not fall under the federal funds exemption outlined in Regulation D. Aligning the definition of “federal funds transactions” in Part A of the FR 2420 with the “federal funds” exemption in Regulation D would improve the correspondence between the reported transactions and liabilities that are exempt from reserve requirements.

    IV. Proposed Revisions Applicable to FR 2420 Part AA (Wholesale Borrowings)

    The Board proposes to add a new Schedule AA to the FR 2420 report to capture selected unsecured wholesale borrowings that are currently being reported as federal funds borrowing on the FR 2420, but would not be included under the proposed federal funds definition described above. For example, a direct borrowing from a corporate lender would be included as a “federal funds borrowing” under the FR 2420's current definition of “federal funds,” but would not be included under the proposed “federal funds” definition described above. The proposed Schedule AA would continue to capture these non-deposit transactions but would re-categorize them as “wholesale borrowings.” These transactions represent a small, but potentially important, alternate source of information on depository institutions' funding costs. As these transactions are already reported on the current FR 2420 report, there should be minimal additional burden involved with reporting those same transactions on the proposed schedule to the report.

    V. Reporting Requirements Applicable to FR 2420 Part B (Eurodollars)

    The Board proposes to add an “office identifier” field to the FR 2420 to identify the non-U.S. branch that booked each Eurodollar deposit. Currently, the FR 2420 requires respondents to report transactions from all non-U.S. branches of domestic institutions with more than $2 billion in total assets as Eurodollar transactions. Some of these transactions, however, are booked in countries with dollar deposit rates that are substantially different than the dollar deposit rates booked in Cayman or Nassau branches. For purposes of monitoring U.S.-based funding conditions and supporting the calculation of the overnight bank funding rate (OBFR), it is necessary to identify the branch that booked the transaction. Accordingly, the proposal would add an “office identifier” field to the FR 2420 to identify the non-U.S. branch that booked each Eurodollar deposit.

    VI. Reporting Requirements Applicable to FR 2420 Part C (Time Deposits and CDs) a. Definition for CDs

    The Board proposes to require FR 2420 respondents to report all time deposits and certificates of deposit with a term equal to or greater than 7 days in Schedule C, regardless of whether the respondent labels them as “CDs” or “term time deposits.” The current FR 2420 instructions only require that “certificates of deposit” be reported. Discussions with market participants, however, have revealed that there is little distinction between a non-negotiable CD and a time deposit. In addition, some market participants have specifically not reported borrowings designated as “term time deposits” because they were not internally characterized as CDs. The proposed amendment will ensure more complete reporting of the relevant data.

    b. Interest Rate Spread

    Currently, the FR 2420 report does not have an “interest rate spread” reporting field. Without this field, the underlying value of the reference rate and spread components cannot be determined with certainty. Accordingly, the Board proposes to add an “interest rate spread” field to the FR 2420 report. This new reporting field will enable calculation of the value of the underlying reference rate without looking up the reference rate in an additional data source. This field would be labelled `NA' for fixed-rate CDs.

    c. Option Identifiers and Step-Up Indicator

    The Board proposes to add report fields to the FR 2420 that would identify CDs with embedded options as well as CDs and time deposits with rates that change over the term of the CD. CDs with options are becoming an increasingly important financial instrument with growing issuance, particularly in products with options to extend the maturity date. One additional data field would need to be added to identify instruments with embedded options. In addition, experience with the current data suggests that there is also a segment of the CD market with rates that rise or “step up” over the course of the instrument's life. An additional field would be necessary to identify these transactions. These fields could be particularly important for informing the use of CD rates in the calculation of reference rates, as options affect the comparability of instruments to others with the same stated maturity dates.

    • CDs with embedded options would be identified under the proposal with an additional field that would capture the type of option, specifically `callable,' `puttable,' `extendable,' and `other,' or indicate `NA' for CDs without embedded options.

    • Rates that will rise or fall over the life of the time deposit or CD based on a pre-arranged agreement would be identified under the proposal with an additional field that would be a `Y' or `N' step-up indicator.

    Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, April 2, 2015. Robert deV. Frierson, Secretary of the Board.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07920 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 6210-01-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 May 1, 2015.

    A. Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland (Nadine Wallman, Vice President) 1455 East Sixth Street, Cleveland, Ohio 44101-2566:

    1. Farmers National Banc Corp, Canfield, Ohio; to acquire 100 percent of the voting shares of National Bancshares Corp, Orrville, Ohio and thereby indirectly acquire First National Bank, Orrville, Ohio.

    B. Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta (Chapelle Davis, Assistant Vice President) 1000 Peachtree Street NE., Atlanta, Georgia 30309:

    1. American Commerce Bancshares, Inc., Breman, Georgia; to acquire 100 percent of the voting shares of ProBank, Tallahassee, Florida.

    C. Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis (Jacquelyn K. Brunmeier, Assistant Vice President) 90 Hennepin Avenue, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55480-0291:

    1. Inter-Mountain Bancorp, Inc., Bozeman, Montana; to merge with Teton Bancshares, Inc., and thereby indirectly acquire Teton Banks, both in Fairfield, Montana.

    Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, April 2, 2015. Michael J. Lewandowski, Associate Secretary of the Board.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07901 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 6210-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [30Day-15-0740] Agency Forms Undergoing Paperwork Reduction Act Review

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has submitted the following information collection request to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and approval in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. The notice for the proposed information collection is published to obtain comments from the public and affected agencies.

    Written comments and suggestions from the public and affected agencies concerning the proposed collection of information are encouraged. Your comments should address any of the following: (a) Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (b) Evaluate the accuracy of the agencies estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (c) Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; (d) Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses; and (e) Assess information collection costs.

    To request additional information on the proposed project or to obtain a copy of the information collection plan and instruments, call (404) 639-7570 or send an email to [email protected] Written comments and/or suggestions regarding the items contained in this notice should be directed to the Attention: CDC Desk Officer, Office of Management and Budget, Washington, DC 20503 or by fax to (202) 395-5806. Written comments should be received within 30 days of this notice.

    Proposed Project

    Medical Monitoring Project (MMP)—(OMB Control No. 0920-0740 Expiration: 5/31/2015)—Revision—National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention (NCHHSTP), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

    Background and Brief Description

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention (DHAP) requests a revision of the currently approved Information Collection Request: “Medical Monitoring Project” expiring May 31, 2015. This data collection addresses the need for national estimates of access to and utilization of HIV-related medical care and services, the quality of HIV-related ambulatory care, and HIV-related behaviors and clinical outcomes.

    For the proposed project, the same data collection methods will be used as for the currently approved project. Data would be collected from a probability sample of HIV-diagnosed adults in the U.S. who consent to an interview and abstraction of their medical records. As for the currently approved project, de-identified information would also be extracted from HIV case surveillance records for a dataset, referred to as the minimum dataset, which is used to assess non-response bias, for quality control, to improve the ability of MMP to monitor ongoing care and treatment of HIV-infected persons, and to make inferences from the MMP sample to HIV-diagnosed persons nationally. No other Federal agency collects such nationally representative population-based information from HIV-diagnosed adults. The data are expected to have significant implications for policy, program development, and resource allocation at the state/local and national levels.

    The changes proposed in this request update the data collection system to meet prevailing information needs and enhance the value of MMP data, while remaining within the scope of the currently approved project purpose. The result is a 16% reduction in burden, or a reduction of 1,397 total burden hours annually.

    • A change in sampling methods accounts for the net reduction in burden. Specifically, sampling from the existing HIV case surveillance database, the National HIV Surveillance System (NHSS, OMB Control No. 0920-0573, Exp. 2/29/2016) would replace the current health care-facility-based sampling. This change in sampling methods would broaden participation in MMP to all HIV-infected persons who have been diagnosed and reported to the NHSS, a population that is more representative of persons living with HIV than are persons receiving HIV medical care. Sampling from NHSS will allow MMP to address key information gaps related to increasing access to care, one of three strategic areas of national focus of the National HIV/AIDS Strategy. The change in project sampling methods reduces the amount of time health care facility staff will spend on project activities, substantially reducing burden hours and offsetting increases in burden from other changes, listed below. Restoration of the original sample of 26 geographic primary sampling units is proposed in this request, for more complete coverage of the population of interest. Three project areas that initially participated in MMP—and were subsequently dropped in 2009 because funding was restricted—will be reinstated as primary sampling units if funding allows.

    • Increasing the sample size in three areas that were previously allocated comparatively small samples (Georgia, Illinois, and Pennsylvania) is expected to improve the ability to produce representative local estimates in these areas.

    • Health care facility staff may be asked to look up contact information for sampled persons with incomplete or incorrect contact information in NHSS; this was not necessary in prior MMP cycles because the patient samples were drawn from facility records.

    Finally, changes were made that did not affect the burden, listed below:

    • The interview instrument was revised to enable the collection of critical information from HIV-infected persons not receiving medical care and to improve question coherence, boost the efficiency of the data collection, and increase the relevance and value of the information. These changes were based on an evaluation of the currently approved MMP interview instrument involving stakeholders, as well as a pilot which evaluated new questions (Formative Research and Tool Development, OMB Control No. 0920-0840, expiration 2/29/2016). These revisions did not change the average time required to complete the interview.

    • Six data elements were removed from the medical record abstraction form and two data elements were added. Because the medical records are abstracted by MMP staff, these changes do not affect the burden of the project on the public.

    • Sampled persons may be interviewed wherever they currently reside, conditional on local law and policy, and in a manner specified by a written, project-specific agreement with the HIV surveillance unit at the person's local health department.

    • Videoconferencing was added as an optional mode of interview administration. Administering the interview via videoconferencing will provide more flexibility for participating in the interview and facilitate communication between respondent and interviewer, for example, by allowing interviewers to respond appropriately to a respondent's visual cues. Videoconferencing will also allow the interviewer to ensure that the respondent is using the correct response cards for interview questions. No audio/audiovisual recordings will be made of the interviews, including interviews administered by videoconferencing.

    This proposed data collection would supplement the National HIV Surveillance System (NHSS, OMB Control No. 0920-0573, Exp. 2/29/2016) in 26 selected state and local health departments, which collect information on persons diagnosed with, living with, and dying from HIV infection and AIDS.

    The participation of respondents is voluntary. There is no cost to the respondents other than their time. Through their participation, respondents will help to improve programs to prevent HIV infection as well as services for those who already have HIV. The total burden hours are 7,140.

    Estimated Annualized Burden Hours Type of respondent Form name Number of
  • respondents
  • Number of
  • responses per
  • respondent
  • Average
  • hours per
  • response
  • (in hours)
  • Sampled, Eligible HIV-Infected Persons Interview Questionnaire 8,720 1 45/60 Facility office staff looking up contact information N/A 2,180 1 2/60 Facility office staff approaching sampled persons for enrollment N/A 1,090 1 5/60 Facility office staff pulling medical records N/A 8,720 1 3/60
    Leroy A. Richardson Chief, Information Collection Review Office, Office of Scientific Integrity, Office of the Associate Director for Science, Office of the Director, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07839 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4163-18-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [30Day-15-15UK] Agency Forms Undergoing Paperwork Reduction Act Review

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has submitted the following information collection request to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and approval in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. The notice for the proposed information collection is published to obtain comments from the public and affected agencies.

    Written comments and suggestions from the public and affected agencies concerning the proposed collection of information are encouraged. Your comments should address any of the following: (a) Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (b) Evaluate the accuracy of the agencies estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (c) Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; (d) Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses; and (e) Assess information collection costs.

    To request additional information on the proposed project or to obtain a copy of the information collection plan and instruments, call (404) 639-7570 or send an email to [email protected] Written comments and/or suggestions regarding the items contained in this notice should be directed to the Attention: CDC Desk Officer, Office of Management and Budget, Washington, DC 20503 or by fax to (202) 395-5806. Written comments should be received within 30 days of this notice.

    Proposed Project

    Generic Clearance for the Collection of Qualitative Feedback on Agency Service Delivery—NEW—National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

    As part of a Federal Government-wide effort to streamline the process to seek feedback from the public on service delivery, the CDC has submitted a Generic Information Collection Request (Generic ICR): “Generic Clearance for the Collection of Qualitative Feedback on Agency Service Delivery” to OMB for approval under the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.).

    Background and Brief Description

    The information collection activity will garner qualitative customer and stakeholder feedback in an efficient, timely manner, in accordance with the Administration's commitment to improving service delivery. By qualitative feedback we mean information that provides useful insights on perceptions and opinions, but are not statistical surveys that yield quantitative results that can be generalized to the population of study. This feedback will provide insights into customer or stakeholder perceptions, experiences and expectations, provide an early warning of issues with service, or focus attention on areas where communication, training or changes in operations might improve delivery of products or services. These collections will allow for ongoing, collaborative and actionable communications between the Agency and its customers and stakeholders. It will also allow feedback to contribute directly to the improvement of program management.

    Feedback collected under this generic clearance will provide useful information, but it will not yield data that can be generalized to the overall population. This type of generic clearance for qualitative information will not be used for quantitative information collections that are designed to yield reliably actionable results, such as monitoring trends over time or documenting program performance. Such data uses require more rigorous designs that address: The target population to which generalizations will be made, the sampling frame, the sample design (including stratification and clustering), the precision requirements or power calculations that justify the proposed sample size, the expected response rate, methods for assessing potential non-response bias, the protocols for data collection, and any testing procedures that were or will be undertaken prior to fielding the study. Depending on the degree of influence the results are likely to have, such collections may still be eligible for submission for other generic mechanisms that are designed to yield quantitative results.

    In accordance with 5 CFR 1320.8(d), Vol. 79, No. 83/Wednesday, April 30, 2014, a 60 day notice for public comment was published in the Federal Register. No public comments were received in response to this notice.

    This is a new collection of information. Respondents will take online surveys or participate in Web site usability testing, interviews, discussion groups, or focus groups. Below is Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID) projected estimate for the next three years. There is no cost to respondents other than their time. The estimated annualized burden hours for this data collection activity is 3,850 hours:

    Estimated Annualized Burden Hours Type of respondent Form name Number of
  • respondents
  • Number of
  • responses per
  • respondent
  • Avgerage
  • burden per
  • response
  • Customer or Stakeholder Online surveys 2,500 1 30/60 Customer or Stakeholder Discussion Groups 150 1 120/60 Customer or Stakeholder Focus groups 700 1 120/60 Customer or Stakeholder Website/app usability testing 250 1 45/60 Customer or Stakeholder Interviews 100 1 90/60
    Leroy A. Richardson, Chief, Information Collection Review Office, Office of Scientific Integrity, Office of the Associate Director for Science, Office of the Director, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07840 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4163-18-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Administration for Children and Families Health Resources and Services Administration Advisory Committee on the Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program Evaluation AGENCY:

    Administration for Children and Families (ACF), HHS; Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), HHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice to announce the renewal of the Advisory Committee on the Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program Evaluation.

    Authority:

    Sec. 511(g)(1) of Title V of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 711, et seq.). The Committee is governed by provisions of Public Law 92-463, as amended, (5 U.S.C. App. 2), which sets forth standards for the formation and use of advisory committees.

    SUMMARY:

    ACF and HRSA announce the renewal of the Advisory Committee on the Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program Evaluation to provide advice to the Secretary of Health and Human Services (“the Secretary”) on the design, plan, progress, and findings of the evaluation required under the Act.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    T'Pring Westbrook, Administration for Children and Families; [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Sec. 511(g)(1) of Title V of the Social Security Act mandates an Advisory Committee to review, and make recommendations on, the design and plan for the evaluation required under the Act. To comply with the authorizing directive and guidelines under the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), a charter has been filed with the Committee Management Secretariat in the General Services Administration (GSA), the appropriate committees in the Senate and U.S. House of Representatives, and the Library of Congress to establish the Advisory Board as a non-discretionary federal advisory committee. The charter was filed on January 27, 2015.

    Objectives and Scope of Activitie

    The purpose of the Committee is to provide advice and make recommendations to the Secretary of Health and Human Services, through the Assistant Secretary, ACF, and the Administrator, HRSA, with respect to the design, plan, progress, and results of the evaluation.

    Membership and Designation

    The Committee shall consist of up to 25 members appointed by the Secretary. Members shall be experts in the areas of program evaluation and research, education, and early childhood development. Members shall be appointed as Special Government Employees. The committee shall also include ex-officio members representing ACF, HRSA, and other agencies of the federal government designated by the Secretary as ex-officio members. The ACF Assistant Secretary and HRSA Administrator each shall recommend nominees for Co-Chairs of the Committee.

    Members shall be invited to a 3-year term; such terms are contingent upon the renewal of the Committee by appropriate action prior to its termination.

    Administrative Management and Support

    Coordination, management, and operational services shall be provided by ACF, with assistance from HRSA.

    A copy of the Committee charter can be obtained from the designated contact or by accessing the FACA database that is maintained by the GSA Committee Management Secretariat. The Web site for the FACA database is http://fido.gov/facadatabase/.

    Dated: March 25, 2015. Mary K. Wakefield, Administrator, HRSA. Mark H. Greenberg, Acting Assistant Secretary, ACF.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07978 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4184-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Administration for Children and Families Tribal Consultation Meetings AGENCY:

    Office of Head Start (OHS), Administration for Children and Families, HHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice of meetings.

    SUMMARY:

    Pursuant to the Improving Head Start for School Readiness Act of 2007, Public Law 110-134, notice is hereby given of three 1-day Tribal Consultation Sessions to be held between the Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, OHS leadership and the leadership of Tribal Governments operating Head Start (including Early Head Start) programs. The purpose of these Consultation Sessions is to discuss ways to better meet the needs of American Indian and Alaska Native children and their families, taking into consideration funding allocations, distribution formulas, and other issues affecting the delivery of Head Start services in their geographic locations [42 U.S.C. 9835, Section 640(l)(4)].

    DATES:

    June 16, 2015, from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.;

    July 30, 2015, from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.;

    August 17, 2015, from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

    Locations:

    • June 16, 2015—National Indian Head Start Directors Association, Hyatt Regency, 1209 L Street, Sacramento, California 95814 • July 30, 2015—Oklahoma Indian Head Start Coalition Conference, DoubleTree at Warren Place, 6110 South Yale Avenue, Tulsa, Oklahoma 74136 • August 17, 2015—Northwest Indian Head Start Association Conference, Holiday Inn Grand Montana, 5500 Midland Road, Billings, Montana 59101 FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Robert Bialas, Regional Program Manager, Region XI, Office of Head Start, email [email protected] or phone (202) 205-9497. Additional information and online meeting registration is available at http://eclkc.ohs.acf.hhs.gov/hslc/hs/calendar/tc2015.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announces OHS Tribal Consultations for leaders of Tribal Governments operating Head Start and Early Head Start programs.

    The agenda for the scheduled OHS Tribal Consultations in Sacramento, California, Tulsa, Oklahoma, and Billings, Montana, will be organized around the statutory purposes of Head Start Tribal Consultations related to meeting the needs of American Indian/Alaska Native children and families, taking into consideration funding allocations, distribution formulas, and other issues affecting the delivery of Head Start services in their geographic locations. In addition, OHS will share actions taken and in progress to address the issues and concerns raised in 2014 OHS Tribal Consultations.

    The Consultation Sessions will be conducted with elected or appointed leaders of Tribal Governments and their designated representatives [42 U.S.C. 9835, Section 640(l)(4)(A)]. Designees must have a letter from the Tribal Government authorizing them to represent the tribe prior to the Consultation Sessions. Other representatives of tribal organizations and Native nonprofit organizations are welcome to attend as observers.

    A detailed report of the Consultation Sessions will be prepared and made available within 45 days of the Consultation Sessions to all Tribal Governments receiving funds for Head Start and Early Head Start programs. Tribes wishing to submit written testimony for the report should send testimony to Robert Bialas at [email protected] either prior to the Consultation Sessions or within 30 days after the meeting.

    OHS will summarize oral testimony and comments from each Consultation Session in the report without attribution, along with topics of concern and recommendations. OHS has sent hotel and logistical information for the California, Oklahoma, and Montana Consultation Sessions to tribal leaders via email and posted information on the Early Childhood Learning and Knowledge Center Web site at http://eclkc.ohs.acf.hhs.gov/hslc/hs/calendar/tc2015.

    Dated: March 26, 2015. Ann Linehan, Acting Director, Office of Head Start.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07958 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4184-40-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration [Docket No. FDA-2014-N-0229] Issuance of Priority Review Voucher; Rare Pediatric Disease Product AGENCY:

    Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is announcing the issuance of a priority review voucher to the sponsor of a rare pediatric disease product application. The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the FD&C Act), as amended by the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act (FDASIA), authorizes FDA to award priority review vouchers to sponsors of rare pediatric disease product applications that meet certain criteria. FDA has determined that CHOLBAM (cholic acid), manufactured by Asklepion Pharmaceuticals, LLC, meets the criteria for a priority review voucher.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Larry Bauer, Rare Diseases Program, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave. Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002, 301-796-4842, FAX: 301-796-9858, email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    FDA is announcing the issuance of a priority review voucher to the sponsor of a rare pediatric disease product application. Under section 529 of the FD&C Act (21 U.S.C. 360ff), added by FDASIA, FDA will award priority review vouchers to sponsors of rare pediatric disease product applications that meet certain criteria. FDA has determined that CHOLBAM (cholic acid), manufactured by Asklepion Pharmaceuticals, LLC, meets the criteria for a priority review voucher. CHOLBAM (cholic acid) is a bile acid indicated for the treatment of bile acid synthesis disorders due to single enzyme defects and as adjunctive treatment of peroxisomal disorders, including Zellweger spectrum disorders in patients who exhibit manifestations of liver disease or steatorrhea or complications from decreased fat soluble vitamin absorption. Bile acid synthesis disorders is a group of rare congenital disorders caused by the absence or malfunction of an enzyme involved in an important metabolic pathway, leading to a failure to produce normal bile acids.

    For further information about the Rare Pediatric Disease Priority Review Voucher Program and for a link to the full text of section 529 of the FD&C Act, go to http://www.fda.gov/ForIndustry/DevelopingProductsforRareDiseasesConditions/RarePediatricDiseasePriorityVoucherProgram/default.htm.

    For further information about CHOLBAM (cholic acid), go to the [email protected] Web site at http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cder/drugsatfda/index.cfm.

    Dated: April 2, 2015. Leslie Kux, Associate Commissioner for Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2015-08016 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4164-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration [Docket No. FDA-2014-N-0229] Issuance of Priority Review Voucher; Rare Pediatric Disease Product AGENCY:

    Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is announcing the issuance of a priority review voucher to the sponsor of a rare pediatric disease product application. The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the FD&C Act), as amended by the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act (FDASIA), authorizes FDA to award priority review vouchers to sponsors of rare pediatric disease product applications that meet certain criteria. FDA has determined that UNITUXIN (dinutuximab), manufactured by United Therapeutics Corporation, meets the criteria for a priority review voucher.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Larry Bauer, Rare Diseases Program, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002, 301-796-4842, FAX: 301-796-9858, email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    FDA is announcing the issuance of a priority review voucher to the sponsor of a rare pediatric disease product application. Under section 529 of the FD&C Act (21 U.S.C. 360ff), added by FDASIA, FDA will award priority review vouchers to sponsors of rare pediatric disease product applications that meet certain criteria. FDA has determined that UNITUXIN (dinutuximab), manufactured by United Therapeutics Corporation, meets the criteria for a priority review voucher. UNITUXIN (dinutuximab) is indicated, in combination with granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF), interleukin-2 (IL-2), and 13-cis-retinoic acid (RA), for the treatment of pediatric patients with high-risk neuroblastoma who achieve at least a partial response to prior first-line multiagent, multimodality therapy. Neuroblastoma is the most common pediatric solid tumor occurring outside the brain, and it is the most common cancer in infants.

    For further information about the Rare Pediatric Disease Priority Review Voucher Program and for a link to the full text of section 529 of the FD&C Act, go to http://www.fda.gov/ForIndustry/DevelopingProductsforRareDiseasesConditions/RarePediatricDiseasePriorityVoucherProgram/default.htm.

    For further information about UNITUXIN (dinutuximab), go to the [email protected] Web site at http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cder/drugsatfda/index.cfm.

    Dated: April 2, 2015. Leslie Kux, Associate Commissioner for Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2015-08014 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4164-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration [Docket No. FDA-2014-D-1747] Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies: Modifications and Revisions; Guidance for Industry; Availability AGENCY:

    Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is announcing the availability of a guidance for industry entitled “Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies: Modifications and Revisions.” This guidance provides information on how FDA will define and process submissions for modifications and revisions to risk evaluation and mitigation strategies (REMS), as well as information on what types of changes to approved REMS will be considered modifications of the REMS and what types of changes will be considered revisions of the REMS. There are different procedures for submission of REMS modifications and revisions to FDA as well as different timeframes for FDA review and action of such changes. In addition, this guidance provides information on how REMS modifications and revisions should be submitted to FDA and how FDA intends to review and act on these submissions. The definitions of REMS modifications and revisions apply to all types of REMS.

    DATES:

    Although you can comment on any guidance at any time (see 21 CFR 10.115(g)(5)), to ensure that the Agency considers your comment on this guidance before it begins work on the final version of the guidance, submit either electronic or written comments on the guidance by June 8, 2015. Submit either electronic or written comments concerning the proposed collection of information by June 8, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit written requests for single copies of the guidance to the Division of Drug Information, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, 10001 New Hampshire Ave. Hillandale Building, 4th Floor, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002; or the Office of Communication, Outreach, and Development, Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave. Bldg. 71, Rm. 3128, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002. Send one self-addressed adhesive label to assist that office in processing your requests. See the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section for electronic access to the guidance document.

    Submit electronic comments on the guidance to http://www.regulations.gov. Submit written comments to the Division of Dockets Management (HFA-305), Food and Drug Administration, 5630 Fishers Lane, Rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Kristen Everett, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave. Bldg. 22, Rm. 6484, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002, 301-796-0453; or Stephen Ripley, Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave. Bldg. 71, Rm. 7301, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002, 240-402-7911.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background

    FDA is announcing the availability of a guidance for industry entitled “Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies: Modifications and Revisions.” This guidance provides information on what types of changes to approved REMS will be considered modifications and what types of changes will be considered revisions. See section 505-1(h) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the FD&C Act) (21 U.S.C. 355-1(h)). This guidance also provides information on how REMS modifications and revisions should be submitted to FDA and how FDA intends to review and act on these submissions.

    If FDA determines that a REMS is necessary to ensure that the benefits of a drug outweigh its risks, FDA is authorized to require a REMS for such drugs under section 505-1 of the FD&C Act,1 added by section 901 of the Food and Drug Administration Amendments Act of 2007 (Pub. L. 110-85).2 Section 505-1(g) and (h) of the FD&C Act include provisions for the assessment and modification of an approved REMS.

    1 Section 505-1 of the FD&C Act applies to applications for prescription drugs submitted under subsection 505(b) (i.e., new drug applications) or (j) (i.e., abbreviated new drug applications) of the FD&C Act (21 U.S.C. 355) and applications under section 351 of the Public Health Service Act (i.e., biologics license applications).

    2 See http://www.fda.gov/RegulatoryInformation/Legislation/FederalFoodDrugandCosmeticActFDCAct/SignificantAmendmentstotheFDCAct/FoodandDrugAdministrationAmendmentsActof2007/default.htm.

    In 2009, FDA issued draft guidance on the format and content of REMS, REMS assessments, and proposed REMS modifications. In that guidance, based on the language of section 505-1(g) and (h) of the FD&C Act before the amendments made by the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act (Pub. L. 112-144) (FDASIA), FDA stated that any proposed modification to an approved REMS, including proposed changes to materials that are appended to the REMS document, must be submitted as a proposed REMS modification in the form of a prior approval supplement and must include a REMS assessment. The guidance stated that the proposed modification(s) may not be implemented until approved by FDA.

    FDASIA amended the REMS modification provisions under section 505-1(g) and (h) of the FD&C Act. Section 505-1(h), as amended by FDASIA, requires FDA to review and act on proposed “minor modifications,” as defined in guidance, within 60 days.3 It also requires FDA to establish, through guidance, that “certain modifications” can be implemented following notification to FDA.4 In addition, FDASIA requires FDA to review and act on REMS modifications due to approved safety label changes, or to a safety label change that FDA has directed the application holder to make pursuant to section 505(o)(4) of the FD&C Act within 60 days.5 Finally, FDASIA specifies that proposed REMS modifications no longer require submission of a REMS assessment; instead, proposed modifications must include an adequate rationale for the proposed changes. This guidance is issued pursuant to section 505-1(h)(2)(A)(ii), (h)(2)(A)(iii), and (h)(2)(A)(iv) of the FD&C Act.

    3 See section 505-1(h)(2)(A)(ii) of the FD&C Act.

    4 See section 505-1(h)(2)(A)(iv) of the FD&C Act.

    5 See section 505-1(h)(2)(A)(iii) of the FD&C Act.

    This guidance is being issued consistent with FDA's good guidance practices regulation (21 CFR 10.115). This guidance, except for the portion setting forth the submission procedures for REMS revisions, is being implemented without prior public comment because the Agency has determined that prior public participation is not feasible or appropriate (21 CFR 10.115(g)(2)). The Agency made this determination because, consistent with the requirements of FDASIA, FDA is issuing this guidance to establish a less burdensome policy and process for submitting certain changes to REMS that is consistent with public health. Although the guidance document is immediately in effect, except for the submission procedures for REMS revisions, it remains subject to comment in accordance with the Agency's good guidance practices. Insofar as this guidance establishes the modifications to an approved REMS that may be implemented following notification to the Secretary under section 505-1(h)(2)(A)(iv)—here referred to as REMS revisions—it has binding effect, except for the portion of the guidance setting forth the submission procedure for REMS revisions, which will, when final, have binding effect.

    II. Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

    This guidance contains information collection provisions that are subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520). The title, description, and respondent description of the information collection are given under this section with an estimate of the annual reporting burden. Included in the estimate is the time for reviewing instructions, searching existing data sources, gathering and maintaining the data needed, and completing and reviewing the collection of information.

    We invite comments on these topics: (1) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of FDA's functions, including whether the information will have practical utility; (2) the accuracy of FDA's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques, when appropriate, and other forms of information technology.

    Title: Guidance for Industry on Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies: Modifications and Revisions

    Description: The guidance provides information on submitting to FDA modifications and revisions to approved REMS for approved new drug applications (NDAs), abbreviated new drug applications (ANDAs), or biologics license applications (BLAs).

    REMS modifications are submitted to FDA as supplements to approved NDAs under 21 CFR 314.70 and for ANDAs under 21 CFR 314.97, and as supplements to approved BLAs under 21 CFR 601.12. The burden hours for preparing and submitting supplements to NDAs and ANDAs is approved by OMB under control number 0910-0001, and for BLAs under control number 0910-0338.

    Concerning REMS revisions, application holders should include the following information in each submission: (1) A full description of the changes to the REMS and/or appended materials, the date the changes will be implemented, and a REMS history that outlines all changes made to the REMS since its approval; (2) a clean Word version of the revised REMS and all appended REMS materials; (3) a redlined (tracked changes) Word version of the revised REMS and revised appended REMS materials that shows the changes from the previous versions; (4) an updated REMS supporting document, if needed; and (5) Form FDA 356h indicating that the submission is a REMS revision. (Form FDA 356h is approved by OMB under control number 0910-0338.) Each REMS revision that is submitted to FDA should also be documented in the next annual report for the application under 21 CFR 314.81(b)(2) (the burden hours for preparing and submitting annual reports for NDAs and ANDAs is approved by OMB under control number 0910-0001, and for BLAs under control number 0910-0338). All subsequent REMS submissions (i.e., proposed modifications or additional REMS revisions) should include previously implemented REMS revisions in the REMS document and appended materials, and should be noted in the REMS history.

    Currently, there are 117 application holders with approved REMS that include 152 drugs. Based on FDA's current review of REMS submissions for approved NDAs, ANDAs, and BLAs, and anticipating an average of 1 REMS revision across the entire group of REMS, we estimate that annually a total of approximately 117 application holders (“Number of Respondents” in table 1) will submit to FDA approximately 152 REMS revision submissions (“Total Annual Responses” in table 1) as described in this document and in the guidance. We also estimate that it will take an application holder approximately 30 hours to prepare and submit to FDA each REMS revision (“Average Burden per Response” in table 1).

    The total estimated reporting burden for the guidance is as follows:

    Table 1—Estimated Annual Reporting Burden 1 Guidance for industry on risk evaluation and mitigation strategies: modifications and revisions Number of
  • respondents
  • Number of
  • responses per
  • respondent
  • Total annual
  • responses
  • Average
  • burden per
  • response
  • Total hours
    REMS revisions 117 1 152 30 4,560 1 There are no capital costs or operating and maintenance costs associated with this collection of information.
    III. Comments

    Interested persons may submit either electronic comments regarding this document to http://www.regulations.gov or written comments to the Division of Dockets Management (see ADDRESSES). It is only necessary to send one set of comments. Identify comments with the docket number found in brackets in the heading of this document. Received comments may be seen in the Division of Dockets Management between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, and will be posted to the docket at http://www.regulations.gov.

    IV. Electronic Access

    Persons with access to the Internet may obtain the document at http://www.fda.gov/Drugs/GuidanceComplianceRegulatoryInformation/Guidances/default.htm, http://www.fda.gov/BiologicsBloodVaccines/GuidanceComplianceRegulatoryInformation/default.htm, or http://www.regulations.gov.

    Dated: April 2, 2015. Leslie Kux, Associate Commissioner for Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2015-08015 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4164-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Health Resources and Services Administration Privacy Act of 1974; Report of an Altered System of Records AGENCY:

    Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS or Department).

    ACTION:

    Notice of an Altered System of Records.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with the requirements of the Privacy Act of 1974 (5 U.S.C. 552a), the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) is publishing notice of a proposed alteration of the system of records entitled and numbered “Public Health and National Health Service Corps Scholarship Program (NHSC SP), National Health Service Corps Loan Repayment Program (NHSC LRP), Students to Service, (S2S), NHSC Student/Resident Experiences and Rotations in Community Health (SEARCH), NURSE Corps Loan Repayment Program (NURSE Corps LRP) formerly the Nursing Education Loan Repayment Program (NELRP), NURSE Corps Scholarship Program (NURSE Corps SP) formerly the Nursing Scholarship Program (NSP), Native Hawaiian Health Scholarship Program (NHHSP), and Faculty Loan Repayment Program (FLRP), Applicants and/or Participants Records System, HHS/HRSA/BHW,” No. 09-15-0037. The proposed alterations affect the system name, system location, categories of records, purposes, routine uses, safeguards, records retention and disposal, system manager title and address, as well as minor editorial corrections and clarifications.

    DATES:

    HRSA filed an altered system report with the Chair of the House Committee on Government Reform and Oversight, the Chair of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, and the Administrator, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget (OMB) on March 30, 2015. To ensure all parties have adequate time in which to comment, the altered system, including the routine uses, will become effective 30 days from the publication of the notice or 40 days from the date it was submitted to OMB and Congress, whichever is later, unless HRSA receives comments that require alterations to this notice.

    ADDRESSES:

    Please address comments to: Associate Administrator, Bureau of Health Workforce (BHW), Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), 5600 Fishers Lane, Room 11W-37, Rockville, MD 20857, telephone (301) 594-4130, or FAX (301) 594-4076. Comments received will be available for inspection at this same address from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. (Eastern Standard Time Zone), Monday through Friday.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    BMISS System Manager, Bureau of Health Workforce, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), 5600 Fishers Lane, Room 11W-37, Rockville, MD 20857, Telephone: 301-443-1587.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Explanation of Changes

    • The system of records notice name has been shortened to “HHS/HRSA/BHW Scholarship and Loan Repayment Program Records.”

    • The Nursing Scholarship Program (NSP) has been renamed the NURSE Corps Scholarship Program (NURSE Corps SP), and the Nursing Education Loan Repayment Program (NELRP) has been renamed the NURSE Corps Loan Repayment Program (NURSE Corps LRP) and all associated records have been merged into a new central database system as noted below.

    • A new information system, BHW Management Information System Solution (BMISS), has replaced Bureau of Health Care Delivery and Assistance NET (BHCDANET), and serves as the central database for information concerning the, NHSC SP, NHSC LRP, S2S, NURSE Corps SP, NURSE Corps LRP, FLRP, and NHHSP.

    • The system location section has been updated to indicate that electronic records and electronic copies of paper records for applicants and participants under various programs are now stored in BMISS and to include locations of records not stored in BMISS (for example, Ambassador records are electronic but currently maintained in an online Web site directory while a BMISS database is being designed and built, at which point the records will be merged into BMISS).

    • The categories of records have been updated to include “information concerning educational loans.”

    • The purpose(s) section has been updated to consolidate certain descriptions (i.e., to combine the loan repayment and scholarship program monitoring activities previously described in purpose 4 with the other program selection and monitoring activities previously described in purpose 8), and to include intra-agency transfers of information previously described as routine uses by mistake (i.e., transfers to HHS' debt and financial management systems).

    • The routine uses have been revised for editorial clarity and otherwise updated as follows:

    ○ Former routine use 15, pertaining to preparation of financial management and accounting documentation and information to be provided to the Department of the Treasury, has been deleted and is instead covered in the SORN for the “Unified Financial Management System,” System No. 09-90-0024, which receives information from this system for that purpose.

    ○ Former routine uses 17, 18, 21 and 22, and a portion of what is now routine use 16 (formerly 14 and 24), pertaining to collection of delinquent federal debts, have been deleted because they are included in the SORN for the “Debt Management and Collection System,” System No. 09-40-0012 (see 7, 10, 11, 13), which receives information from this system for those purposes.

    ○ Routine use 8 has been updated to specify that the information that may be disclosed includes a participant's name, Social Security number (SSN), mailing address, email address, phone number, health professions school, residency training, specialty, program status, award years, service start and end dates, and service site address and phone number.

    ○ Routine use 11 has been updated allowing HHS to release to the participant's service site information from the participant's file, including but not limited to, his/her allegations concerning conditions at the site, disputes with site management, or circumstances surrounding his/her resignation/termination for the purpose of monitoring the program participant's compliance with the service obligation, including fact-finding to calculate service credit, to decide transfer requests, or to make default determinations.

    ○ Routine use 14 has been added to allow HHS to disclose information consisting of name, address, SSN, health professions license number, and place of employment to a state or local government agency, including any agent thereof, maintaining criminal, civil, or administrative violation records, or other pertinent information such as records regarding the investigation or resolution of allegations involving a program participant. The purpose of this disclosure is to enable HHS to monitor compliance with program requirements and make determinations regarding administrative actions or other remedies, including default determinations.

    ○ Routine use 15 has been added to allow HHS to disclose Ambassador information consisting of name, email and social network address(es), phone number(s), employment information, and professional biographies to current and prospective participants in BHW programs and other interested individuals. The purpose of this disclosure is to allow these individuals to contact Ambassadors who serve as mentors and local resources for the NHSC programs.

    ○ Routine use 17 (formerly 16) has been updated to allow HHS to disclose information to loan servicing agencies for the purposes of obtaining payoff balances on educational loans and determining whether loans are eligible for repayment under the programs.

    ○ Routine use 19 (formerly 20) has been updated to allow HHS to disclose information to the Department of the Treasury to determine if the applicant's name appears on the Do Not Pay List for program integrity/applicant eligibility purposes.

    • The safeguards section has been updated to include encryption, intrusion detection, and firewalls.

    • The retention and disposal section has been expanded and updated to include records created in BMISS or digitized and migrated into BMISS, and to cite applicable disposition schedules.

    • The system manager contact information has been updated.

    • The notification procedure has been revised to reflect the information that must be included in a notification request made by mail.

    • The record source categories have been revised to include these additional sources: System for Awards Management (SAM) (formerly the Excluded Parties List System); HHS Office of Inspector General Web site listing individuals excluded from Medicare, Medicaid, and all other federal health care programs; and HHS database of Health Professional Shortage Areas.

    • Other minor editorial corrections have been made to reflect the elimination of the Bureau of Clinician Recruitment and Services (BCRS) and the transfer of its functions to the newly established Bureau of Health Workforce (BHW).

    II. The Privacy Act

    The Privacy Act (5 U.S.C. 552a) governs the means by which the U.S. Government collects, maintains, and uses information about individuals in a system of records. A “system of records” is a group of any records under the control of a federal agency from which information about an individual is retrieved by the individual's name or other personal identifier. The Privacy Act requires each agency to publish in the Federal Register a system of records notice (SORN) identifying and describing each system of records the agency maintains, including the purposes for which the agency uses information about individuals in the system, the routine uses for which the agency discloses such information outside the agency, and how individual record subjects can exercise their rights under the Privacy Act (e.g., to seek access to their records in the system).

    Dated: March 31, 2015. Mary K. Wakefield, Administrator. System Number: 09-15-0037 System name:

    HHS/HRSA/BHW Scholarship and Loan Repayment Program Records

    Security classification:

    Unclassified

    System location:

    The servers for the central database (known as the Bureau of Health Workforce (BHW) Management Information System Solution (BMISS)) are located at the Center for Information Technology, National Institutes of Health, 12 South Drive, Room 1100, Bethesda, Maryland 20892, and are accessed from computer workstations in program offices listed below. Paper copies of records included in the central database, and any paper or electronic records not included in the central database, are also stored in the program offices listed below:

    • Native Hawaiian Health Scholarship Program (NHHSP) records are located at the BHW, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), 5600 Fishers Lane, Room 9-105, Rockville, MD 20857 and at Papa Ola Lokahi, 894 Queen St., #706, Honolulu, HI 96813.

    • Ready Responder electronic records are located at BHW, HRSA, HHS, 5600 Fishers Lane, Room 15W-21D, Rockville, MD 20857.

    • NHSC Student/Resident Experiences and Rotations in Community Health (SEARCH) records are located at BHW HRSA, HHS, 5600 Fishers Lane, Room 7-100, Rockville, MD 20857.

    Additional records (e.g., spreadsheets created to perform their duties) are kept by contractors who assist with the implementation of the NHSC LRP, NHSC SP, NURSE Corps LRP (formerly NELRP), NURSE Corps SP (formerly NSP), FLRP, and are maintained at the below contractor locations:

    • Customer Care Center, Teletech, 8123 South Hardy Dr., Tempe, AZ 85284;

    • Futrend Technology, Inc., 8605 Westwood Center Dr., Suite 502, Vienna, VA 22182;

    • Sapient Government Services, 1515 N. Courthouse Rd., 4th Floor, Arlington, VA 22201.

    Because contractors may change, a current listing of contractors and locations (if different from above) is available upon request by contacting the Policy-Coordinating Official. Archived records (including scanned paper files that have been merged into BMISS) are stored at the Washington National Records Center, 4205 Suitland Road, Suitland, MD 20746.

    Categories of individuals covered by the system:

    The system contains information about the following categories of individuals:

    • Individuals who have applied for, who are receiving, or who have received awards under the following programs: the National Health Service Corps Scholarship Program (NHSC SP), the National Health Service Corps Loan Repayment Program (NHSC LRP), Students to Service (S2S), the NURSE Corps Loan Repayment Program (NURSE Corps LRP) formerly the Nursing Education Loan Repayment Program (NELRP), the NURSE Corps Scholarship Program (NURSE Corps SP) formerly the Nursing Scholarship Program (NSP), the Native Hawaiian Health Scholarship Program (NHHSP), and the Faculty Loan Repayment Program (FLRP).

    • Individuals who have applied to participate, are participating, or have participated in the NHSC Student/Resident Experiences and Rotations in Community Health (SEARCH) Program.

    • Individuals who are current or former Ambassadors, Alumni, or Ready Responders.

    • Individuals who indicate an interest in employment in or an assignment to a medical facility located in a Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) or a medically underserved population area, including public and federal medical facilities, such as Bureau of Prisons medical facilities, Indian Health Service health care facilities, and other federally sponsored health care facilities.

    Categories of records in the system:

    Records include the individual's name, address(es), telephone number(s), email address(es), Social Security number (SSN); scholarship, loan repayment, Ambassadors, Alumni, Ready Responders or SEARCH application and associated forms/documents, contracts, employment data, professional performance and credentialing history of licensed health professionals; preference for site-selection; personal, professional, and demographic background information; academic and/or service progress reports (which include related data, correspondence, and professional performance information consisting of continuing education, performance awards, and adverse or disciplinary actions); commercial credit reports, educational data including tuition and other related education expenses; educational data including academic program and status; information concerning educational loans; employment status verification (which includes certifications and verifications of service obligation); medical data, financial data, payment data and related forms, deferment/placement/suspension/waiver data and supporting documentation; repayment/delinquent/default status information, correspondence to and from Program applicants and participants and/or their representatives, Claims Collection Litigation Reports for default cases referred to the Department of Justice (DOJ).

    Authority for maintenance of the system:

    • Section 333 of the Public Health Service (PHS) Act, as amended (42 U.S.C. 254f), Assignment of Corps Personnel;

    • Section 225 of the PHS Act (42 U.S.C. 234), as in effect on September 30, 1977, PH/NHSC Scholarship Training Program;

    • Section 409(b) of the Health Professions Educational Assistance Act of 1976, (42 U.S.C. 295g), PSASP;

    • Sections 338A-H of the PHS Act, as amended (42 U.S.C. 254l-q), NHSC Scholarship and Loan Repayment Programs;

    • Sections 336(c) and 331(b)(1) of the PHS Act (42 U.S.C. 254h-1(c) and 254d(b)(1)), SEARCH;

    • Section 846 of the PHS Act, as amended (42 U.S.C. 297n), NURSE Corps Loan Repayment Program (formerly the Nursing Education Loan Repayment Program) and NURSE Corps Scholarship Program (formerly the Nursing Scholarship Program);

    • Section 10 of the Native Hawaiian Health Care Improvement Act, as amended (42 U.S.C. 11709), NHHSP;

    • Section 738(a) of the PHS Act (42 U.S.C. 293b(a)), Faculty Loan Repayment Program;

    • Section 202 of Title II of Pub. L. 92-157 (42 U.S.C. 3505d), National Health Professional Shortage Clearinghouse;

    • 31 U.S.C. 7701(c), Debt Collection Improvement Act of 1996, Requirement That Applicant Furnish Taxpayer Identifying Number;

    • Section 215(a) of the PHS Act, as amended (42 U.S.C. 216(a)), pertaining to PHS commissioned officers, and 5 U.S.C. 3301 pertaining to civil service employees, both of which authorize verification of an individual's suitability for employment.

    Purpose(s):

    Relevant agency personnel use records about individuals from this system on a need to know basis for the following purposes:

    1. To obtain marketing and recruitment information concerning individuals who registered to complete an online application, but did not submit or complete an application.

    2. To identify and select qualified individuals to participate in the above-identified Programs.

    3. To maintain records on and to verify Program applicants' or participants' credentials and educational background, and previous and current professional employment data and performance history information to verify that all claimed background and employment data are valid and all claimed credentials are current and in good standing from selection for an award through the completion of service.

    4. To assist the HHS Program Support Center (PSC), the DOJ, and other government entities in the collection of Program debts.

    5. To respond to inquiries from Program applicants and participants, their attorneys or other authorized representatives, and Congressional representatives.

    6. To compile and generate managerial and statistical reports.

    7. With respect to the PH/NHSC and NHSC SP, NHHSP, NURSE Corps SP (formerly NSP), NHSC LRP, NURSE Corps LRP (formerly NELRP), and FLRP: (a) to select and match scholarship recipients, loan repayors, and other individuals for assignment to or employment with a health care or other facility appropriate to the Programs' purposes; (b) to perform loan repayment and scholarship program administrative activities, including, but not limited to, payment tracking, deferment of the service obligation, monitoring a participant's compliance with the service requirements, determination of service completion, review of suspension or waiver requests, default determinations, and calculation of liability upon default; and (c) to monitor the services provided by the Programs' health care providers.

    8. With respect to the SEARCH Program: (a) to track recruitment of SEARCH participants for the NHSC Scholarship and Loan Repayment Programs; and (b) to determine how many non-obligated SEARCH participants ultimately practice primary health care in a Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA).

    9. With respect to the Ambassador and Alumni activities: (a) to advocate for more health professions students to choose primary care; (b) to mentor students and clinicians; and (c) to recruit students and clinicians for the NHSC Scholarship and Loan Repayment Programs, and to train community leaders and local clinicians to care about and for people in need.

    10. To transfer records of delinquent federal debts to System No. 09-40-0012, Debt Management and Collection System, for debt collection purposes.

    11. To transfer information to System No. 09-90-0024, Unified Financial Management System (UFMS), for purposes of effecting payment of program funds (through the Department of the Treasury) and preparing and maintaining financial management and accounting documentation related to obligations and disbursements of funds, (including providing notifications to the Department of the Treasury) related to payments to, or on behalf of, awardees. Information transferred to UFMS for these purposes is limited to the individual's name, address, SSN and other information necessary to identify him/her, the funding being sought or amount of qualifying educational loans, and the program under which the awardee is being processed.

    Routine uses of records maintained in the system, including categories of users and the purposes of such uses:

    In addition to the disclosures authorized by the Privacy Act at 5 U.S.C. 552a(b)(2) and (b)(4)-(b)(11), information about an individual may be disclosed from this system of records to parties outside HHS, without the individual's prior, written consent, for these routine uses:

    1. HHS may disclose to a Member of Congress or to a Congressional staff member information from the record of an individual in response to a written inquiry from the Congressional office made at the written request of that individual.

    2. HHS may disclose information from this system of records to the Department of Justice (DOJ) or to a court or other tribunal when

    a. HHS, or any component thereof, or

    b. Any HHS employee in his or her official capacity, or

    c. Any HHS employee in his or her individual capacity where the DOJ (or HHS, where it is authorized to do so) has agreed to represent the employee, or

    d. The United States Government, is a party to litigation or has an interest in such litigation, and by careful review, HHS determines that the records are both relevant and necessary to the litigation and that, therefore, the use of such records by the DOJ, court, or other tribunal is deemed by HHS to be compatible with the purpose for which the records were collected.

    3. In the event that a record on its face, or in conjunction with other records, indicates a violation or potential violation of law, whether civil, criminal, or regulatory in nature, and whether arising by general statute or particular program statute, or by regulation, rule or order issued pursuant thereto, disclosure may be made to the appropriate public authority, whether federal, state, local, tribal, or otherwise, responsible for enforcing, investigating or prosecuting such violation or charged with enforcing or implementing the statute or rule, regulation or order issued pursuant thereto, if the information is relevant to the enforcement, regulatory, investigative, or prosecutorial responsibility of the receiving entity. This includes, but is not limited to, disciplinary actions by state licensing boards against current or former Program participants.

    4. HHS may disclose information consisting of names, SSN, disciplines and/or medical specialties, current mailing addresses, dates of scholarship support, and dates of graduation of NHSC SP, NURSE Corps SP (formerly NSP) and NHHSP scholarship recipients to: (a) designated coordinators at each health professions school participating in the scholarship program for the purpose of determining educational expenses and resulting levels of scholarship support, and for the purpose of guiding and informing these recipients about the nature of their service obligation; and (b) schools attended by scholarship recipients who have taken a leave of absence from school, have terminated enrollment or been dismissed from school, or are repeating coursework, for the purpose of determining their academic status and whether their scholarship support should be suspended or resumed, as appropriate.

    5. HHS may disclose information consisting of name, address, discipline and/or medical specialty, and SSN from this system of records to a Program participant's health professions school, residency program, or other postgraduate training program, for the purpose of ascertaining the participant's enrollment status and training completion or graduation date.

    6. HHS may disclose records consisting of names, disciplines and/or medical specialties, current business or school mailing addresses, email addresses of the Programs' scholarship and loan repayment participants to contractors, Ambassadors, Alumni, and professional organizations in underserved communities for the purpose of supporting these clinicians in the course of their service obligation in a HPSA, school of nursing, or critical shortage facility.

    7. HHS or its contractors may disclose records consisting of a SEARCH participant's name, mailing address, email address, phone number, health professions school, residency training and specialty to state Primary Care Offices (PCOs) and Primary Care Associations (PCAs) and site representatives for the purpose of matching participants to potential employment sites.

    8. HHS may disclose records consisting of a participant's name, SSN, mailing address, email address, phone number, health professions school, residency training, specialty, program status, award years, service start and end dates, and service site address and phone number to Department grantees, contractors and subcontractors who assist with the implementation of the above-identified Programs, for the purposes of collecting, compiling, aggregating, analyzing, or refining records in the system, or improving Program operations. Grantees and contractors maintain, and contractors are also required to ensure that subcontractors maintain, Privacy Act safeguards with respect to such records.

    9. HHS may disclose biographical data and information supplied by Program applicants or participants: (a) To references listed on the application and associated forms for the purpose of evaluating the applicant's or participant's professional qualifications, experience, and suitability; (b) to a state or local government licensing board and/or to the Federation of State Medical Boards or a similar non-government entity for the purpose of verifying that all claimed background and employment data are valid and all claimed credentials are current and in good standing; and (c) to prospective, current or former employers, or to site representatives, PCAs, and PCOs for the purpose of appraising the applicant's professional qualifications and suitability for site assignment or employment.

    10. HHS may disclose an applicant's or participant's name, mailing address, email address, phone number, SSN, health professions school, residency training, and specialty to Department grantees, site representatives, contractors, and subcontractors who assist with the implementation of the above-identified Programs, for the purpose of recruiting, screening, evaluating, and matching, placing, or assigning health professionals to a service site appropriate to the relevant Program's purposes. In addition, Department grantees, contractors and subcontractors may disclose biographical data and information supplied by Program applicants, participants, or references listed on the application and associated forms: (a) To other references for the purpose of evaluating the applicant's or participant's professional qualifications, experience, and suitability; (b) to a state or local government licensing board and/or to the Federation of State Medical Boards or a similar non-government entity for the purpose of verifying that all claimed background and employment data are valid and all claimed credentials are current and in good standing; (c) to the System for Awards Management (formerly Excluded Parties List System) for the purpose of determining whether applicants or participants are suspended, debarred, or disqualified from participation in covered transactions; (d) to the National Practitioner Data Bank for the purpose of determining whether applicants or participants have information on their reports; and (e) to prospective employers, or to site representatives, for the purpose of appraising the applicant's or participant's professional qualifications and suitability for site assignment or employment. Grantees and contractors maintain, and contractors are also required to ensure that subcontractors maintain, Privacy Act safeguards with respect to such records.

    11. HHS may disclose records consisting of name, mailing address, email address, phone number, SSN, specialty, and requested or actual placement site(s) to State Loan Repayment Grantees, state PCOs and PCAs, and site representatives to facilitate PCO, PCA and site activities related to recruitment and placement of Program participants at service sites. For the purpose of monitoring the program participant's compliance with the service obligation, including fact-finding to calculate service credit, to decide transfer requests, or to make default determinations, HHS may release to the participant's service site other information from the participant's file, including but not limited to, his/her allegations concerning conditions at the site, disputes with site management, or circumstances surrounding his/her resignation/termination.

    12. HHS may disclose records to a state or local government licensing board and/or to the Federation of State Medical Boards or a similar non-government entity which maintains records concerning: (a) An individual's employment history; (b) the issuance, retention, suspension, revocation, or reinstatement of licenses or registrations necessary to practice a health professional occupation or specialty; (c) disciplinary action against the individual or other sanctions imposed by a state or local government licensing board; or (d) the individual's attempts to pass health professions licensure exam(s). This disclosure may include the applicant's or participant's name, address, SSN, employment history, educational data, accreditation, licensing, and professional qualification data, and facts concerning any clinical competence, unprofessional behavior, or substance abuse problem of which HHS is aware. The purposes of this disclosure are: (1) To enable HHS to obtain information relevant to a decision concerning a health professional's accomplishments, professional and personal background qualifications, experience, and any licensure sanctions related to substance abuse, to determine the individual's suitability for employment, retention, or termination as a health services provider at a health care facility approved by the relevant Program; and (2) to inform health professions licensing boards or the appropriate non-government entities about the health care practices or conduct of a practicing, terminated, resigned, or retired health services provider whose professional conduct so significantly failed to conform to generally accepted standards of professional practice for health care providers as to raise reasonable concern for the health and safety of patients.

    13. HHS may disclose information consisting of name, address, SSN, health professions license number, and place of employment from this system of records to federal, state, or local health agencies and law enforcement regarding a program participant who has a physical or mental condition that is, or has the potential to become, a risk to patients or to the public at large, or whose aberrant behavior poses such a risk (e.g., commission of a sexual assault, illegal use or distribution of narcotics).

    14. HHS may disclose information consisting of name, address, SSN, health professions license number, and place of employment to a state or local government agency, including any agent thereof, maintaining criminal, civil, or administrative violation records, or other pertinent information such as records regarding the investigation or resolution of allegations involving a program participant. The purpose of this disclosure is to enable HHS to monitor compliance with program requirements and make determinations regarding administrative actions or other remedies, including default determinations.

    15. HHS may disclose Ambassador information consisting of name, email and social network address(es), phone number(s), employment information, and professional biographies to current and prospective participants in BHW programs and other interested individuals. The purpose of this disclosure is to allow these individuals to contact Ambassadors who serve as mentors and local resources for the NHSC programs.

    16. HHS may disclose information from this system of records to a consumer reporting agency, as defined in 31 U.S.C. 3701(a)(3), for the following purposes:

    a. To obtain a commercial credit report to assess the creditworthiness of a scholarship or loan repayment applicant;

    b. To verify information provided on the scholarship or loan repayment application concerning whether the applicant has ever defaulted on a federal or non-federal obligation, or had delinquent federal or non-federal debts or judgment liens;

    c. To determine and verify the eligibility of loans submitted for repayment;

    d. To assess and verify ability of a debtor to repay debts owed to the federal government; and

    e. To provide an incentive for debtors to repay federal debts by making these debts part of their credit records.

    Pursuant to 31 U.S.C. 3711(e)(1)(F), the information disclosed to the consumer reporting agency is limited to (i) information necessary to establish the identity of the person, including name, address, and taxpayer identification number; (ii) the amount, status, and history of the claim; and (iii) the agency or program under which the claim arose.

    17. HHS may disclose information about NHSC LRP, S2S, NURSE Corps LRP (formerly NELRP), and FLRP applicants or participants to lending institutions and loan servicing agencies for the purpose of obtaining payoff balances on educational loans and determining whether loans are eligible for repayment under the Program. Disclosure will be limited to the applicant/participant's name, address, SSN, the loan account number(s), the pre-verified loan balance, account status, and other information necessary to identify the LRP applicant/participant and his/her loans for this purpose.

    18. HHS may disclose information to the Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service (IRS), about an individual applying under the above-identified Programs to find out whether the applicant has a delinquent tax debt. This disclosure is for the sole purpose of determining the applicant's eligibility for funding and/or creditworthiness and is limited to the individual's name, address, SSN, other information necessary to identify him/her, and the program for which the information is being obtained.

    19. HHS may disclose information from this system of records to another federal, state, or local agency or private employer to whom a Program defaulter has applied for federal grant funds, federal scholarship, loan, or loan repayment funds, or employment involving federal funds, for the purpose of ensuring that the Program defaulter does not receive federal funds for which he/she is ineligible. Disclosure will be limited to the defaulter's name, address, SSN, inclusion on the Do Not Pay List, and any other information necessary to identify him/her.

    20. HHS may disclose information from this system of records to the DOJ and applicable state agencies in order to exclude a debtor from all federal health care programs, as defined in 42 U.S.C. 1320a-7b(f), including Medicare and Medicaid, or to conclude a settlement agreement staying such an exclusion.

    21. HHS may disclose information from this system of records to other federal, state, and local agencies, and public and private entities that provide scholarship and/or loan repayment funding or include bonus clauses in employment contracts, for the following purposes: (a) to curtail fraud and abuse of federal funds by identifying individuals who have applied for, or accepted, funding from another source for performance of the same service; and (b) to determine if an applicant has an existing service obligation to another federal, state, local, or other entity.

    22. HHS may disclose to federal, state, and local agencies, and public and private non-profit entities for research purposes, the name, address(es), SSN, discipline and service sites of applicants and participants in the above-identified Programs when the Department:

    i. has determined that the use or disclosure does not violate legal or policy limitations under which the record was provided, collected, or obtained;

    ii. has determined that a bona fide research/analysis purpose exists;

    iii. has required the recipient to:

    • establish strict limitations concerning the receipt and use of applicant- and participant-identified data;

    • establish reasonable administrative, technical, and physical safeguards to protect the confidentiality of the data and to prevent the unauthorized use or disclosure of the record;

    • remove, destroy, or return the information that identifies the applicant or participant at the earliest time at which removal or destruction can be accomplished consistent with the purpose of the research project, unless the recipient has presented adequate justification of a research nature for retaining such information; and

    • make no further use or disclosure of the record except as authorized by HHS or when required by law; and

    iv. has secured a written statement attesting to the recipient's understanding of, and willingness to abide by these provisions.

    23. Disclosure may be made in response to a subpoena from another federal agency having the power to subpoena other agencies' records, such as the IRS or U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

    24. Disclosure of information from this system of records may be made to the HHS/PSC/Federal Occupational Health contract physicians to review and provide a written opinion of the medical documentation submitted by scholarship and loan repayment Program participants seeking a suspension or waiver of their service or payment obligation.

    25. Disclosure to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) if captured in an intrusion detection system used by HHS and DHS pursuant to a DHS cybersecurity program that monitors Internet traffic to and from federal government computer networks to prevent a variety of types of cybersecurity incidents.

    26. HHS may disclose records to appropriate federal agencies and Department contractors that have a need to know the information for the purpose of assisting the Department's efforts to respond to a suspected or confirmed breach of the security or confidentiality of information maintained in this system of records, when the information disclosed is relevant and necessary for that assistance.

    Because, as described in the Purposes section, certain information from this system of records is transferred to HHS' financial and debt management systems, those systems' SORNs should be consulted for additional routine use disclosures that may be made without the individual's consent. See Unified Financial Management System, System No. 09-90-0024, and Debt Management and Collection System, System No. 09-40-0012.

    Policies and practices for storing, retrieving, accessing, retaining, and disposing of records in the system— Storage:

    Records are maintained in electronic database servers and backup servers, file folders, and for NHHSP records, backup tapes.

    Retrievability:

    Records are retrieved by an individual's name, Social Security number, or other identifying numbers or characteristics.

    Safeguards:

    a. Authorized Users: Password-protected access is limited to persons authorized and needing to use the electronic records, which includes system managers and their staff, BHW headquarter officials and staff, HRSA Division of Regional Operations staff, financial and fiscal management personnel, Office of the General Counsel, Office of Information Technology personnel, and at Papa Ola Lokahi (POL), an entity which collaborates with HRSA/BHW in the administration of the Native Hawaiian Health Scholarship Program (NHHSP) through a Cooperative Agreement to assist with the implementation of the NHHSP. POL is physically located at 894 Queen St., Honolulu, HI 96813.

    b. Additional Authorized Users: Password-protected access is also provided to applicants, participants, and service sites for the purpose of inputting data, uploading documents, or submitting queries through BMISS.

    c. Physical Safeguards: Rooms where records are located are locked when not in use. During regular business hours, rooms are unlocked but are controlled by on-site personnel. Security guards perform random checks on the physical security of the offices (storage locations) after duty hours, including weekends and holidays.

    Servers and other computer equipment used to process identifiable data are located in secured areas and use physical access devices (e.g., keys, locks, combinations, card readers) and/or security guards to control entries into the facility. All facilities housing HRSA information systems maintain fire suppression and detection devices/systems (e.g., sprinkler systems, handheld fire extinguishers, fixed fire hoses, and or smoke detectors) that can be activated in the event of a fire.

    With respect to NHHSP records located at Papa Ola Lokahi (POL), an entity HRSA/BWH collaborates with to administer the NHHSP, the building in which POL's office is located is publicly accessible but secured, with limited accessibility before and after work hours. Security guards visit the building at night. NHHSP's office suite is kept locked during work hours and individual offices are also locked when vacant. Applicant and participant files are kept in a locked cabinet in a locked office. Access to these files is limited to approved staff members, and when the area the files are in is not under the direct control of NHHSP staff, the office and cabinet are kept locked. The file server is behind a locked office door in a locked server cabinet. Backup tapes are stored in a locked, fireproof floor safe, and a secure, confidential off-site vault.

    Technical safeguards: Encryption, intrusion detection and firewalls are utilized. Scans are run against the BMISS platform for web and architecture vulnerabilities. Complex or strong passwords are required and are changed frequently.

    Retention and disposal:

    Records are retained and disposed of as follows:

    • Files concerning participants who complete their obligations or whose obligations are waived, cancelled, or terminated are transferred to the Washington National Records Center in Suitland, Maryland and are destroyed 6 years after final payment, under disposition schedule HSA B-351 3. 1.

    • HRSA has digitized and uploaded paper files concerning active participants in BHW scholarship and loan repayment programs into BMISS. The paper files are stored at the Washington National Records Center and are destroyed 15 years after closeout, under disposition schedule N1-512-92-01, item 25P 1 and 2.

    • Unfunded or withdrawn applicant records are destroyed 6 months after the close of each fiscal year application period, under disposition schedule N1-512-92-01, item 25P 1.

    • Currently, all records migrated to BMISS or created in BMISS are retained indefinitely, pending NARA's approval of a revised schedule.

    System manager(s) and address:

    The System Manager for the system of records is the following Policy-Coordinating Official:

    Director, Division of Policy and Shortage Designation, Bureau of Health Workforce (BHW), Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), 5600 Fishers Lane, Room 11W-42, Rockville, MD 20857.

    Points of contact for specific programs/activities:

    • NHSC SP and NHSC LRP Applications/Awards; Participant Placement/Assignment; Ready Responders: Director, Division of the National Health Service Corps, BHW, HRSA, 5600 Fishers Lane, Room 8C-26, Rockville, MD 20857.

    • NURSE Corps LRP (formerly NELRP), NURSE Corps SP (formerly NSP), and FLRP Applications/Awards; Participant Placement/Assignment: Director, Division of Health Careers and Financial Support, BHW, HRSA, 5600 Fishers Lane, Room 9-105, Rockville, MD 20857.

    • NHSC SP, NHSC LRP, S2S, NURSE Corps LRP (formerly NELRP), NURSE Corps SP (formerly NSP), and FLRP Participants' service from matching through service completion: Director, Division of Participant Support and Compliance, BHW, HRSA, 5600 Fishers Lane, Room 15W-50, Rockville, MD 20857.

    • Suspension/Waiver/Default Determination for all BHW Programs: Chief, Legal and Compliance Branch, BHW, HRSA, 5600 Fishers Lane, Room 8-73, Rockville, MD 20857.

    • NHHSP: Administrator, Papa Ola Lokahi, 894 Queen St., # 706, Honolulu, HI 96813.

    • SEARCH and Ambassadors: Director, Division of External Affairs, BHW, HRSA, 5600 Fishers Lane, Room 7-100, Rockville, MD 20857.

    Notification procedure:

    To find out if the system contains records about you, contact the Policy-Coordinating Official, Director, Division of Policy and Shortage Designation, Bureau of Health Workforce (BHW), Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), 5600 Fishers Lane, Room 11W-42, Rockville, MD 20857 who will refer you to the appropriate Point of Contact for the program/activity.

    Requests in person: A subject individual who appears in person at a specific location seeking access to or disclosure of records relating to him/her shall provide his/her name, current address, Social Security Number or other identifying information (e.g., date of birth), the name of the Program(s) in which the individual participated (or applied but was not selected), and at least one piece of tangible identification, such as driver's license, passport, or voter registration card. Identification papers with current photographs are preferred but not required. (A federally-issued picture ID is required to access many federal facilities such as the Parklawn Building.) If a subject individual has no identification but is personally known to an agency employee, such employee shall make a written record verifying the subject individual's identity. Where the subject individual has no identification papers, the responsible agency official shall require that the subject individual certify in writing that he/she is the individual who he/she claims to be and that he/she understands that the knowing and willful request for or acquisition of a record concerning an individual under false pretenses is a criminal offense subject to a $5,000 fine.

    Requests by mail: A written request must contain the name and address of the requester, Social Security number or other identifying information, and his/her signature which is either notarized to verify his/her identity or includes a written certification that the requester is the person he/she claims to be and that he/she understands that the knowing and willful request for or acquisition of records pertaining to an individual under false pretenses is a criminal offense subject to a $5,000 fine. In addition, the following information is needed: the name of the Program(s) in which the individual participated (or applied but was not selected), and the requester's current status (e.g., in training, in deferment, in service, or in default).

    Requests by telephone: Because positive identification of the caller cannot be established, telephone requests are not honored.

    Record access procedures:

    Same as notification procedure. Requesters may also ask for an accounting of disclosures that have been made of their records, if any.

    Contesting record procedures:

    Same as notification procedure. Contact the Policy-Coordinating Official; specify the information being contested, the corrective action sought, and the reasons for requesting the correction, along with supporting information to show how the record is inaccurate, incomplete, untimely, or irrelevant.

    Record source categories:

    Records are obtained directly from the subject individuals, or from the following sources: educational institutions; internship and/or residency training programs; employers; NHSC-approved service sites; critical shortage facilities; schools of nursing; lending institutions and loan servicing agencies; health professional associations; National Practitioner Data Bank; System for Awards Management (formerly Excluded Parties List System); HHS Office of Inspector General Web site listing of individuals excluded from Medicare, Medicaid, and all other federal health care programs; HHS database of Health Professional Shortage Areas; HHS grantees and contractors/subcontractors; consumer reporting agencies/credit bureaus; other federal agencies, including but not limited to the Department of the Treasury, IRS, and the U.S. Postal Service; state health professions licensing boards and/or the Federation of State Medical Boards or a similar non-government entity; and third parties who provide references or other information concerning the subject individual.

    System exempted from certain provisions of the Act:

    None.

    [FR Doc. 2015-07899 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4160-15-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Office of the Secretary Findings of Research Misconduct AGENCY:

    Office of the Secretary, HHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    Notice is hereby given that the Office of Research Integrity (ORI) has taken final action in the following case:

    Teresita L. Briones, Ph.D., Wayne State University: Based on the report of an inquiry conducted by Wayne State University (WSU) and additional analysis conducted by ORI in its oversight review, ORI found that Dr. Teresita L. Briones, former Associate Professor, College of Nursing, WSU, engaged in research misconduct in research supported by National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR), National Institutes of Health (NIH), grants P30 NR009014, R01 NR005260, and R01 NR007666.

    ORI found that Respondent intentionally, knowingly, and recklessly engaged in research misconduct by falsifying and/or fabricating data that were included in five (5) publications and three (3) grant applications submitted to NINR, NIH:

    Behavioural Brain Research 279:112-22, 2015 Feb 15 (hereafter referred to as “BBR 2015”) Journal of Neuroinflammation 11:13, 2014 Jan 22 (hereafter referred to as “JNI 2014”) Journal of Neurotrauma 26(4):613-25, 2009 Apr (hereafter referred to as “JNT 2009”) Journal of Neurotrauma 28(12):2485-92, 2011 Dec (hereafter referred to as “JNT 2011”) Neuroscience 262:143-55, 2014 Mar 14 (hereafter referred to as “NS 2014”) • R01 NR011167-01 • R01 NR011167-01A1 • R01 NR 011167-01A2

    ORI found that Respondent falsified and/or fabricated data by falsely reporting the results of Western blot experiments that examined neuroinflammation, amyloidogenesis, and/or cognitive impairment in a rat model of cerebral ischemia. Specifically, Respondent duplicated, reused, and falsely relabeled Western blot gel images and claimed they represented different experiments in:

    BBR 2015, Figures 2E and 5D JNI 2014, Figures 2A and 2C JNT 2009, Figures 2B and 5 JNT 2011, Figure 2 NS 2014, Figure 4 • R01 NR011167-01, Figures 5 and 6 • R01 NR011167-01A1, Figures 4A and 4B • R01 NR011167-01A2, Figures 4A and 4B

    As a result of this Agreement, Respondent will request that the following publications be retracted: BBR 2015, JNI 2014, JNT 2009, JNT 2011, and NS 2014.

    Dr. Briones has entered into a Voluntary Exclusion Agreement (Agreement) and has voluntarily agreed for a period of three (3) years, beginning on March 12, 2015:

    (1) to exclude herself from any contracting or subcontracting with any agency of the United States Government and from eligibility for or involvement in nonprocurement programs of the United States Government referred to as “covered transactions” pursuant to HHS' Implementation (2 CFR part 376 et seq) of OMB Guidelines to Agencies on Governmentwide Debarment and Suspension, 2 CFR part 180 (collectively the “Debarment Regulations”);

    (2) to exclude herself voluntarily from serving in any advisory capacity to the U.S. Public Health Service (PHS) including, but not limited to, service on any PHS advisory committee, board, and/or peer review committee, or as a consultant; and

    (3) to request that the following publications be retracted: BBR 2015, JNI 2014, JNT 2009, JNT 2011, and NS 2014.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Acting Director, Office of Research Integrity, 1101 Wootton Parkway, Suite 750, Rockville, MD 20852, (240) 453-8200.

    Donald Wright, Acting Director, Office of Research Integrity.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07896 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4150-31-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Office of the Secretary Findings of Research Misconduct AGENCY:

    Office of the Secretary, HHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    Notice is hereby given that the Office of Research Integrity (ORI) has taken final action in the following case:

    Ryousuke Fujita, Ph.D., Columbia University: Based on the report of an investigation conducted by Columbia University (CU) and additional analysis conducted by ORI in its oversight review, ORI found that Dr. Ryousuke Fujita, former Postdoctoral Scientist, Taub Institute for the Aging Brain, Departments of Pathology and Cell Biology and Neurology, CU Medical Center, engaged in research misconduct in research supported by National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), National Institutes of Health (NIH), grant R01 NS064433 and National Institute of Aging (NIA), NIH, grant R01 AG042317.

    ORI found that Respondent engaged in research misconduct by falsifying and fabricating data for specific protein expressions in human-induced neuronal (hiN) cells derived skin fibroblasts of Alzheimer's disease patients and unaffected individuals in seventy-four (74) panels included in figures in the following two (2) publications and one (1) unpublished manuscript:

    Cell 146:359-371, 2011 (hereafter referred to as “Cell 2011”).

    Nature 500:45-53, 2013 (hereafter referred to as “Nature 2013”).

    • “Human induced neuron models of APOE4-associated Alzheimer's disease display altered APP endocytosis and processing.” Unpublished manuscript.

    ORI found that Respondent engaged in research misconduct by knowingly and intentionally fabricating and falsifying research in seventy-four (74) panels included in figures in Cell 2011, Nature 2013, and the unpublished manuscript. Respondent inflated sample numbers and data, fabricated numbers for data sets, manipulated enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) analysis, mislabelled immunoflourescent confocal images, and manipulated and reused Western blot images.

    Specifically, the Respondent • Fabricated numbers for the data presented as a bar graph in nine (9) panels in Figures S6#, S6H, and S6J in Cell 2011, Figures 3B and S12 in Nature 2013, and Figures 2F, 4B, 4D, and 4F in the unpublished manuscript Falsely inflated the sample size of quantitative data presented as bar graphs in fifty-three (53) panels in Figures 6B, 7I, and S6J in Cell 2011, Figures 3G, 3H, 4C, S10, S11b-h, S12d-f, S13a, S13c, S14b-c, S15b-i, and S16a-f in Nature 2013, and Figures 4b, 4d, 4f, 4i, 6c-d, S1n, S1o, S2a-b, and S4c-k in the unpublished manuscript Falsely manipulated ELISA analysis to achieve desired results presented as bar graphs in nine (9) figure-panels in Figure 6B in Cell 2011 and Figures 2D, 2E, 3G, 3H, and S10a-d in Nature 2013 Falsely inflated the numerical values of the data in Figure 7I in Cell 2011 by a factor of 10 to improve results and appear consistent with data presented in supplementary information published with the paper Falsely reversed the labeling of immunoflourescent confocal images in Figures 7M and 7N in Cell 2011 and Figure S13A in Nature 2013 to obtain the desired results Flipped and resized the Western blot image for APP panel from Figure 12b and falsely reused it to represent APP results under completely different experimental conditions in Figure 12c in Nature 2013

    Dr. Fujita has entered into a Voluntary Exclusion Agreement (Agreement) and has voluntarily agreed for a period of three (3) years, beginning on March 18, 2015:

    (1) to exclude himself from any contracting or subcontracting with any agency of the United States Government and from eligibility for or involvement in nonprocurement programs of the United States Government referred to as “covered transactions” pursuant to HHS' Implementation (2 CFR part 376 et seq) of OMB Guidelines to Agencies on Governmentwide Debarment and Suspension, 2 CFR part 180 (collectively the “Debarment Regulations”); and

    (2) to exclude himself voluntarily from serving in any advisory capacity to the U.S. Public Health Service (PHS) including, but not limited to, service on any PHS advisory committee, board, and/or peer review committee, or as a consultant.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Acting Director, Office of Research Integrity, 1101 Wootton Parkway, Suite 750, Rockville, MD 20852, (240) 453-8200.

    Donald Wright, Acting Director, Office of Research Integrity.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07897 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4150-31-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Meeting of the National Advisory Committee on Children and Disasters AGENCY:

    Office of the Secretary, Department of Health and Human Services.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    As stipulated by the Federal Advisory Committee Act, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is hereby giving notice that the National Advisory Committee on Children and Disasters (NACCD) will be holding a meeting via teleconference. The meeting is open to the public.

    DATES:

    The April 30, 2015, NACCD meeting is scheduled from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. EST. The agenda is subject to change as priorities dictate. Please check the NACCD Web site, located at WWW.PHE.GOV/NACCD for the most up-to-date information on the meeting.

    ADDRESSES:

    To attend the meeting via teleconference, call toll-free: 1-888-324-4311, international dial-in: 1-517-308-9181. The pass-code is: 4818002. Please call 15 minutes prior to the beginning of the conference call to facilitate attendance. Pre-registration is required for public attendance. Individuals who wish to attend the meeting should submit an inquiry via the NACCD Contact Form located at www.phe.gov/NACCDComments.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Please submit an inquiry via the NACCD Contact Form located at www.phe.gov/NACCDComments.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Pursuant to the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) of 1972 (5 U.S.C., Appendix, as amended), and section 2811A of the Public Health Service (PHS) Act (42 U.S.C. 300hh-10a), as added by section 103 of the Pandemic and All Hazards Preparedness Reauthorization Act of 2013 (Pub. L. 113-5), the HHS Secretary, in consultation with the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, established the National Advisory Committee on Children and Disasters (NACCD). The purpose of the NACCD is to provide advice and consultation to the HHS Secretary with respect to the medical and public health needs of children in relation to disasters. The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) provides management and administrative oversight to support the activities of the NACCD.

    Background: This public meeting will be dedicated to the members voting to approve the report of findings of the NACCD Surge Capacity Work Group.

    Availability of Materials: The meeting agenda and materials will be posted on the NACCD Web site at: www.phe.gov/naccd prior to the meeting.

    Procedures for Providing Public Input: All written comments must be received prior to April 29, 2015. Please submit comments via the NACCD Contact Form located at www.phe.gov/NACCDComments. Individuals who plan to participate by phone and need special assistance should submit a request via the NACCD Contact Form located at www.phe.gov/NACCDComments.

    Dated: March 18, 2015. Nicole Lurie, Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07874 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Indian Health Service Reimbursement Rates for Calendar Year 2015 AGENCY:

    Indian Health Service, HHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    Notice is given that the Director of the Indian Health Service (IHS), under the authority of sections 321(a) and 322(b) of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 248 and 249(b)), Public Law 83-568 (42 U.S.C. 2001(a)), and the Indian Health Care Improvement Act (25 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.), has approved the following rates for inpatient and outpatient medical care provided by IHS facilities for Calendar Year 2015 for Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, and beneficiaries of other Federal programs, and for recoveries under the Federal Medical Care Recovery Act (42 U.S.C. §§ 2651-2653). The Medicare Part A inpatient rates are excluded from the table below as they are paid based on the prospective payment system. Since the inpatient rates set forth below do not include all physician services and practitioner services, additional payment shall be available to the extent that those services are provided.

    Calendar Year 2015 Inpatient Hospital Per Diem Rate (Excludes Physician/Practitioner Services) Lower 48 States $2,443 Alaska 2,926 Outpatient Per Visit Rate (Excluding Medicare) Lower 48 States 350 Alaska 601 Outpatient Per Visit Rate (Medicare) Lower 48 States 307 Alaska 564 Medicare Part B Inpatient Ancillary Per Diem Rate Lower 48 States 516 Alaska 956 Outpatient Surgery Rate (Medicare)

    Established Medicare rates for freestanding Ambulatory Surgery Centers.

    Effective Date for Calendar Year 2015 Rates

    Consistent with previous annual rate revisions, the Calendar Year 2015 rates will be effective for services provided on/or after January 1, 2015 to the extent consistent with payment authorities including the applicable Medicaid State plan.

    Dated: December 12, 2014. Yvette Roubideaux, Acting Director, Indian Health Service. Editorial Note:

    The Federal Register received this document for publication on March 31, 2015.

    [FR Doc. 2015-07779 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4160-16-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES National Institutes of Health Submission for OMB Review; 30-day Comment Request; National Institute of Health Neurobiobank Tissue Access Request SUMMARY:

    Under the provisions of Section 3507(a)(1)(D) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) a request for review and approval of the information collection listed below. This proposed information collection was previously published in the Federal Register on February 13, 2014, page 8723 and allowed 60-days for public comment. No public comments were received. The purpose of this notice is to allow an additional 30 days for public comment. The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), National Institutes of Health, may not conduct or sponsor, and the respondent is not required to respond to, an information collection that has been extended, revised, or implemented on or after October 1, 1995, unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

    Direct Comments to OMB: Written comments and/or suggestions regarding the item(s) contained in this notice, especially regarding the estimated public burden and associated response time, should be directed to the: Office of Management and Budget, Office of Regulatory Affairs, [email protected] or by fax to 202-395-6974, Attention: NIH Desk Officer.

    Comment Due Date: Comments regarding this information collection are best assured of having their full effect if received within 30-days of the date of this publication.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    To obtain a copy of the data collection plans and instruments or request more information on the proposed project contact: NIMH Project Clearance Liaison, Science Policy and Evaluation Branch, OSPPC, NIMH, NIH, Neuroscience Center, 6001 Executive Boulevard, MSC 9667, Rockville Pike, Bethesda, MD 20892, or call 301-443-4335 or Email your request, including your address to: [email protected] Formal requests for additional plans and instruments must be requested in writing.

    Proposed Collection: National Institute of Health Neurobiobank Tissue Access Request—Existing without OMB Clearance—National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), National Institute of Health (NIH).

    Need and Use of Information Collection: NIMH is seeking OMB approval for two Neurobiobank data collections: (1) Pre-Mortem Donor Recruitment Form, and (2) Tissue Access Request Form. The pre-mortem donor form will collect information from potential donors to ensure and enable appropriate research use of the tissues and biospecimens. Knowledge about the health history surrounding a particular tissue or biospecimen is essential to ethical scientific research conducted upon it. The tissue access request form will collect information from researchers who wish to gain access to the tissue stored throughout the Neurobiobank network, The NIH Neurobiobank Tissue Access Request form is necessary to verify that the researcher “Recipient” Principal Investigators and their organization or corporations applying to use the tissue is qualified to conduct human tissue research and have approved assurance from the DHHS Office of Human Research Protections to access tissue or biospecimens from the National Neurobiobank for research purposes. The primary use of this information is to document, track, monitor, and evaluate the appropriate use of the Neurobiobank tissue and biospecimen resources, as well as to notify interested recipients of updates, corrections, or other changes to the system.

    OMB approval is requested for 3 years. There are no costs to respondents other than their time. The total estimated annualized burden hours are 38.

    Estimated Annualized Burden Hours Form Number of
  • respondents
  • Frequency of response Average
  • burden per
  • response
  • (in hours)
  • Total annual burden hours
    Neurobiobank Tissue Access Request 50 1 30/60 25 Pre-Mortem Donor Recruitment Form 50 1 15/60 13 Total 100 38
    Dated: March 30, 2015. Keisha L. Shropshire, NIMH Project Clearance Officer, NIMH, NIH.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07871 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4140-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES National Institutes of Health National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders; Notice of Meeting

    Pursuant to section 10(d) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. App.), notice is hereby given of a meeting of the National Deafness and Other Communication Disorders Advisory Council.

    The meeting will be open to the public as indicated below, with attendance limited to space available. Individuals who plan to attend and need special assistance, such as sign language interpretation or other reasonable accommodations, should notify the Contact Person listed below in advance of the meeting.

    The meeting will be closed to the public in accordance with the provisions set forth in sections 552b(c)(4) and 552b(c)(6), title 5 U.S.C., as amended. The grant applications and the discussions could disclose confidential trade secrets or commercial property such as patentable material, and personal information concerning individuals associated with the grant applications, the disclosure of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.

    Name of Committee: National Deafness and Other Communication Disorders Advisory Council.

    Date: May 29, 2015.

    Closed: 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.

    Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications.

    Place: National Institutes of Health, Building 31, Conference Room 6, 31 Center Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892.

    Open: 9:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

    Agenda: Staff reports on divisional, programmatic, and special activities.

    Place: National Institutes of Health, Building 31, Conference Room 6, 31 Center Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892.

    Contact Person: CRAIG A. JORDAN, Ph.D., Director, Division of Extramural Activities, NIDCD, NIH, Room 8345, MSC 9670, 6001 Executive Blvd., Bethesda, MD 20892-9670, 301-496-8693, [email protected]

    Any interested person may file written comments with the committee by forwarding the statement to the Contact Person listed on this notice. The statement should include the name, address, telephone number and when applicable, the business or professional affiliation of the interested person.

    In the interest of security, NIH has instituted stringent procedures for entrance onto the NIH campus. All visitor vehicles, including taxicabs, hotel, and airport shuttles will be inspected before being allowed on campus. Visitors will be asked to show one form of identification (for example, a government-issued photo ID, driver's license, or passport) and to state the purpose of their visit.

    Information is also available on the Institute's/Center's home page: http://www.nidcd.nih.gov/about/Pages/Advisory-Groups-and-Review-Committees.aspx, where an agenda and any additional information for the meeting will be posted when available.

    (Catalogue of Federal Domestic Assistance Program Nos. 93.173, Biological Research Related to Deafness and Communicative Disorders, National Institutes of Health, HHS)
    Dated: April 1, 2015. Melanie J. Gray, Program Analyst, Office of Federal Advisory Committee Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07864 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4140-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES National Institutes of Health Proposed Collection; 60-day Comment Request: Identifying Experts in Prevention Science Methods To Include on NIH Review Panels (OD) SUMMARY:

    In compliance with the requirement of Section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, regarding the opportunity for public comment on proposed data collection projects, the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Office of Disease Prevention (ODP) will publish periodic summaries of proposed projects to be submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and approval.

    Written comments and/or suggestions from the public and affected agencies are invited to address one or more of the following points: (1) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the function of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (2) 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; (3) 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, including the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

    To Submit Comments and For Further Information: To obtain a copy of the data collection plans and instruments, submit comments in writing, or request more information on the proposed project, contact: Paris Watson, Senior Advisor, NIH Office of Disease Prevention, 6100 Executive Blvd., Room 2B03, Bethesda, MD 20892 or call (301) 496-1508 or email your request, including your address to [email protected] Formal requests for additional plans and instruments must be requested in writing.

    DATES:

    Comments Due Date: Comments regarding this information collection are best assured of having their full effect if received within 60 days of the date of this publication.

    Proposed Collection: Identifying Experts in Prevention Science Methods to Include on NIH Review Panels, 0925—New, Office of Disease Prevention (ODP), National Institutes of Health (NIH).

    Need and Use of Information Collection: The Office of Disease Prevention (ODP) is the lead Office at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) responsible for assessing, facilitating, and stimulating research in disease prevention and health promotion, and disseminating the results of this research to improve public health. Prevention is preferable to treatment, and research on disease prevention is an important part of the NIH's mission. The knowledge gained from this research leads to stronger clinical practice, health policy, and community health programs. ODP collaborates with the NIH, other Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) agencies, and other public and private partners to achieve the Office's mission and goals. One of our priorities is to promote the use of the best available methods in prevention research and support the development of better methods. One of our strategies is to help the Center for Scientific Review (CSR) identify experts in prevention science methods to include on their review panels. This will strengthen the panels and improve the quality of the prevention research supported by the NIH. To identify experts in prevention science methods, we worked with our contractor, IQ Solutions, Inc., to develop online software which will allow us to collect scientists' names, contact information, and resumes, as well as to have those scientists identify their level of expertise in a variety of prevention science methods and content areas. The data collected with this software will be used to create a web-based tool that CSR staff can use to identify scientists with expertise in specific prevention science methods and content areas for invitation to serve on one of the CSR review panels. If successful, this system will also be shared with review staff in the other Institutes and Centers at the NIH, as well as other DHHS agencies, to use in the same way. Given our plans to create an automated system for reviewer information collection, we are now seeking OMB approval. This PRA clearance request is for the deployment of this new online software and the collection of data.

    OMB approval is requested for 3 years. There are no costs to respondents other than their time. The total estimated annualized burden hours are 1,040.

    Estimated Annualized Burden Hours Type of respondents Number of
  • respondents
  • Number of
  • responses per
  • respondent
  • Average time per response
  • (in hours)
  • Total annual burden hour
    Investigators 3,120 1 20/60 1040
    Dated: April 1, 2015. Lawrence A. Tabak, Deputy Director, National Institutes of Health.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07999 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4140-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES National Institutes of Health Submission for OMB Review; 30-Day Comment Request; Evaluation of the NHLBI Proteomics Centers Program: Qualitative Interviews (NHLBI) SUMMARY:

    Under the provisions of Section 3507(a)(1)(D) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) a request for review and approval of the information collection listed below. This proposed information collection was previously published in the Federal Register on 1/27/2015 page 4,291 and allowed 60-days for public comment. No public comments were received. The purpose of this notice is to allow an additional 30 days for public comment. The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI), National Institutes of Health, may not conduct or sponsor, and the respondent is not required to respond to, an information collection that has been extended, revised, or implemented on or after October 1, 1995, unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

    Direct Comments to Omb: Written comments and/or suggestions regarding the item(s) contained in this notice, especially regarding the estimated public burden and associated response time, should be directed to the: Office of Management and Budget, Office of Regulatory Affairs, [email protected] or by fax to 202-395-6974, Attention: NIH Desk Officer.

    Comment Due Date: Comments regarding this information collection are best assured of having their full effect if received within 30-days of the date of this publication.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    To obtain a copy of the data collection plans and instruments, submit comments in writing, or request more information on the proposed project, contact: Dr. Pothur Srinivas, Project Officer/ICD Contact, Two Rockledge Center, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Room 10188, MSC 10193, Bethesda, MD 20892, or call non-toll-free number (301)-435-0550, or Email your request to: [email protected] Formal requests for additional plans and instruments must be requested in writing.

    Proposed Collection: Evaluation of the NHLBI Proteomics Centers Program: Qualitative Interviews 0925-New, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), the National Institutes of Health (NIH)

    Need and Use of Information Collection: The Proteomics Centers Program was established in 2010 with the goal of applying proteomic approaches to gain a better mechanistic understanding of the physiologic pathways underlying defined clinical conditions related to heart, lung, and blood diseases. The primary goal of the program is to help facilitate a better understanding of the underlying mechanisms in heart, lung, and blood diseases which could contribute to more effective diagnoses, risk stratification, intervention, and prevention. Given the rapid developments in proteomic technologies and approaches in the last five years, it is important to determine the extent to which the efforts of the centers have matured, leading to discovery of new targets for intervention and clinically actionable tool sets. An eighteen-month outcome evaluation will coincide with the completion of funding for the program. This information collection request is being made for one component of this evaluation: semi-structured interviews with key informants across four targeted groups, internal and external to the program. The results of the evaluation will help determine the extent to which these desired outcomes were achieved as well as to inform future of proteomics research funding and commitments by the NHLBI. The key informant interviews are necessary to understand the perspectives of internal and external program stakeholders as it relates to the success, limitations, and opportunities that can shape future research funding.

    OMB approval is requested for 3 years. There are no costs to respondents other than their time. The total estimated annualized burden hours are 48.

    Estimates of Hour Burden Form Type of
  • respondents
  • Number of
  • respondents
  • Frequency of
  • response
  • Average time
  • per response
  • Annual hour
  • burden
  • Interview Guide—Principle Investigators & Key Personnel Principal investigators and key personnel 27 1 50/60 23 Interview Guide—External Investigators External Proteomics investigators 9 1 50/60 8 Interview Guide—Trainees and Junior Investigators Trainees and junior investigators 20 1 50/60 17
    Dated: April 1, 2015. Lynn Susulske, NHLBI Project Clearance Liaison, National Institutes of Health.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07889 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4140-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES National Institutes of Health National Cancer Institute Notice of Charter Renewal

    In accordance with title 41 of the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations, section 102-3.65(a), notice is hereby given that the Charter for the Frederick National Advisory Committee to the National Cancer Institute was renewed for an additional two-year period on March 30, 2015.

    It is determined that the Frederick National Advisory Committee to the National Cancer Institute, is in the public interest in connection with the performance of duties imposed on the National Cancer Institute and the National Institutes of Health by law, and that these duties can best be performed through the advice and counsel of this group.

    Inquiries may be directed to Jennifer Spaeth, Director, Office of Federal Advisory Committee Policy, Office of the Director, National Institutes of Health, 6701 Democracy Boulevard, Suite 1000, Bethesda, Maryland 20892 (Mail code 4875), Telephone (301) 496-2123, or [email protected].

    Dated: April 1, 2015. Melanie J. Gray, Program Analyst, Office of Federal Advisory Committee Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07861 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4140-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard [Docket No. USCG-2015-0231] Distant Water Tuna Fleet Manning Exemption AGENCY:

    Coast Guard, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice of availability.

    SUMMARY:

    The Coast Guard announces the availability of an updated policy letter entitled “Distant Water Tuna Fleet (DWTF) Vessels Manning Exemption Guidance.” The letter provides revised guidance on procedures for requesting and issuing a Manning Exemption Letter as a result of recent statutory changes that affected the previous 2013 guidance.

    DATES:

    The revised policy guidance is effective May 1, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For information about this document call or email Mr. Jack Kemerer, Coast Guard; telephone 202-372-1249, email [email protected] For information about viewing or submitting material to the docket, call Cheryl Collins, Program Manager, Docket Operations, telephone 202-366-9826, toll free 1-800-647-5527.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Discussion

    The revised policy letter is available at www.fishsafe.info. It updates guidance on the issuance of Distant Water Tuna Fleet Manning Exemption Letters. Similar guidance was issued in 2013, and is being brought up to date in light of recent statutory changes.

    The DWTF consists of U.S. commercial purse seine fishing vessels, under masters who are U.S. citizens, that operate in the tuna fisheries of the Western Pacific Ocean far from U.S. territories other than Guam and American Samoa. Because of the difficulty of hiring U.S. merchant mariners (other than vessel masters) to serve in this fleet, the law authorizes foreign citizens to hold required navigation and engineering positions, if they are properly licensed by their countries, and subject to certain restrictions and limitations, and if qualified U.S. citizens are not readily available. Vessels that comply with these conditions may apply for and receive a Coast Guard Manning Exemption Letter attesting to compliance. The letter may expedite a vessel boarding or examination process.

    This notice is issued under authority of 5 U.S.C. 552(a).

    Dated: April 2, 2015. J.C. Burton, Captain, U.S. Coast Guard, Director of Prevention and Compliance.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07939 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 9110-04-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Transportation Security Administration [Docket No. TSA-2005-20118] Intent To Request Renewal From OMB of One Current Public Collection of Information; Maryland Three Airports: Enhanced Security Procedures for Operations at Certain Airports in the Washington, DC, Metropolitan Area Flight Restricted Zone 1

    1 The name of the collection has been revised to correspond with the regulation mandating the collection of information. See CFR 49 CFR part 1562, subpart A—Maryland Three Airports: Enhanced Security Procedures for Operations at Certain Airports in the Washington, DC, Metropolitan Area Flight Restricted Zone

    AGENCY:

    Transportation Security Administration, DHS.

    ACTION:

    60-Day Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) invites public comment on one currently approved Information Collection Request (ICR), Office of Management and Budget (OMB) control number 1652-0029, abstracted below that we will submit to OMB for renewal in compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA). The ICR describes the nature of the information collection and its expected burden. This collection requires individuals to successfully complete a security threat assessment (1) to operate an aircraft to or from the three Maryland airports (Maryland Three Airports) that are located within the Washington, DC, Metropolitan Area Flight Restricted Zone (FRZ), or (2) to serve as an airport security coordinator at one of these three airports.

    DATES:

    Send your comments by June 8, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments may be emailed to [email protected] or delivered to the TSA PRA Officer, Office of Information Technology (OIT), TSA-11, Transportation Security Administration, 601 South 12th Street, Arlington, VA 20598-6011.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Christina A. Walsh at the above address, or by telephone (571) 227-2062.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Comments Invited

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), 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 OMB control number. The ICR documentation is available at http://www.reginfo.gov. Therefore, in preparation for OMB review and approval of the following information collection, TSA is soliciting comments to—

    (1) Evaluate whether the proposed information requirement continues to be necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility;

    (2) Evaluate the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden;

    (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, including using appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

    Information Collection Requirement

    OMB Control Number 1652-0029; Maryland Three Airports: Enhanced Security Procedures for Operations at Certain Airports in the Washington, DC Metropolitan Area Flight Restricted Zone, 49 CFR part 1562. Codified in 49 CFR part 1562, TSA sets forth airport operator requirements and security procedures at three Maryland airports that are located within the Washington, DC, Metropolitan Area Flight Restricted Zone (FRZ), and for individuals operating aircraft to or from these airports. The Maryland Three Airports are College Park Airport (CGS), Potomac Airfield (VKX), and Washington Executive/Hyde Field (W32). The information collected is used to determine compliance with 49 CFR part 1562.

    Part 1562 allows an individual who is approved by TSA to operate an aircraft to or from one of the Maryland Three Airports or to serve as an airport security coordinator at one of these three airports. In order to be approved, a pilot or airport security coordinator applicant is required to successfully complete a security threat assessment. As part of this threat assessment, the applicant must undergo a criminal history records check and a check of Government terrorist watch lists and other databases to determine whether the individual poses, or is suspected of posing, a threat to transportation or national security. An applicant will not receive TSA's approval under this analysis if TSA determines or suspects them of being a threat to national or transportation security. Applicants can be fingerprinted at the Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport's (DCA) badging office and any participating airport badging office or law enforcement office located nearby to the applicant's residence or place of work. Applicants must present the following information to TSA, using TSA Form 418, as part of the application process: full name, Social Security number, date of birth, address, phone numbers, current and valid airman certificate or current and valid student pilot certificate, current medical certificate, email address, emergency contact number, a list of the make, model, and FAA aircraft registration number for each aircraft the pilot intends to operate at Maryland Three Airports, one form of Government-issued picture ID, and fingerprints.

    Although not required by the rule, TSA asks applicants to provide an email address and contact phone number to facilitate immediate communication that might be necessary when operating in the FRZ or helpful during the application process. TSA receives approximately 312 applications annually, and estimates applicants spend approximately 90 minutes to submit the information to TSA, which is a total annual burden of 28,080 hours.

    Dated: April 2, 2015. Christina A. Walsh, TSA Paperwork Reduction Act Officer, Office of Information Technology.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07989 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 9110-05-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT [Docket No. FR-5865-D-02] Order of Succession for the Office of Public and Indian Housing AGENCY:

    Office of the Secretary, HUD.

    ACTION:

    Notice of order of succession for the Office of Public and Indian Housing.

    SUMMARY:

    In this notice, the Secretary designates the order of succession for the Office of Public and Indian Housing. This order of succession revokes and supersedes all prior orders of succession for the Office of Public and Indian Housing, including the Order of Succession published on August 4, 2011.

    DATES:

    Effective upon date of signature.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Linda Bronsdon, Office of Policy, Program and Legislative Initiatives, Office of Public and Indian Housing, Department of Housing and Urban Development, 490 L'Enfant Plaza, Washington, DC 20024, email address [email protected], telephone 202-402-3494. (This is not a toll-free number.) This number may be accessed through TTY by calling the toll-free Federal Relay Service telephone number 1-800-877-8339.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Secretary is issuing this order of succession of officials to perform the duties and functions of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Public and Indian Housing when the Assistant Secretary is not available to exercise the powers or perform the duties of the office. This publication revokes and supersedes all prior orders of succession for the Office of Public and Indian Housing, including the order of succession published on August 4, 2011 at 76 FR 47227.

    Section A. Order of Succession

    During any period when the Assistant Secretary is not available to exercise the powers or perform the duties of the Assistant Secretary of PIH, the following officials within PIH are hereby designated to exercise the powers and perform the duties of the Assistant Secretary for PIH including the authority to waive regulations:

    (1) Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public and Indian Housing;

    (2) General Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public and Indian Housing;

    (3) Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public Housing and Voucher Programs;

    (4) Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public Housing Investments;

    (5) Deputy Assistant Secretary for Field Operations;

    (6) Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Real Estate Assessment Center;

    (7) Deputy Assistant Secretary for Office of Native American Programs;

    (8) Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy, Programs and Legislative Initiatives.

    These officials shall perform the functions and duties of the office in the order specified herein, and no official shall serve unless all the other officials, whose position precede his/hers in this order, are not available to act by reason of absence, disability or vacancy in office.

    Section B. Authority Superseded

    This order of succession supersedes all prior orders of succession for the Office of Public and Indian Housing, including the order of succession published on August 4, 2011 at 76 FR 47227.

    Authority:

    Section 7(d), Department of Housing and Urban Development Act, 42 U.S.C. 3535(d).

    Dated: March 25, 2015. Julián Castro, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07914 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4210-67-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT [Docket No. FR-5865-D-01] Delegation of Authority for the Office of Public and Indian Housing AGENCY:

    Office of the Secretary, HUD.

    ACTION:

    Notice of delegation of authority.

    SUMMARY:

    Section 7(d) of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Act, as amended, authorizes the Secretary to delegate functions, powers and duties as the Secretary deems necessary. In this delegation of authority, the Secretary delegates authority to the Assistant Secretary, the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary and the General Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Office of Public and Indian Housing (PIH) and authorizes the Assistant Secretary, the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary and the General Deputy Assistant Secretary to redelegate authority for the administration of certain PIH programs. This delegation revokes and supersedes all prior delegations of authority, including the delegation published on August 4, 2011.

    DATES:

    Effective upon date of signature.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Linda Bronsdon, AICP, Program Analyst, Office of Policy, Program and Legislative Initiatives, Office of Public and Indian Housing, Department of Housing and Urban Development, 490 L'Enfant Plaza, Suite 2206, Washington, DC 20024, email address [email protected], telephone number 202-402-3494. (This is not a toll free number.) This number may be accessed through TTY by calling the toll-free Federal Relay Service at telephone number 1-800-877-8339.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Previous delegations of authority from the Secretary of HUD to the Assistant Secretary, and General Deputy Assistant Secretary for PIH, including the delegation published on August 4, 2011 (76 FR 47224), are hereby revoked and superseded by this delegation of authority.

    Section A. Authority Delegated

    The Secretary hereby delegates to the Assistant Secretary, the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary and the General Deputy Assistant Secretary for PIH the authority and responsibility to administer the following programs:

    1. Programs under the jurisdiction of the Secretary pursuant to the authority transferred from the Public Housing Administration under section 5(a) of the Department of Housing and Urban Development Act (42 U.S.C. 3534) as amended;

    2. Each program of the Department authorized pursuant to the United States Housing Act of 1937 (1937 Act)(42 U.S.C. 1437 et seq) as amended, including but not limited to the Public Housing program, Section 8 Programs (except the following Section 8 project-based programs: New Construction, Substantial Rehabilitation, Loan Management Set-Aside, and Property Disposition) and predecessor programs that are no longer funded but have ongoing commitments;

    3. PIH programs for which assistance is provided for or on behalf of public housing agencies (PHAs), public housing residents or other low-income households; and

    4. PIH programs for which assistance is provided for or on behalf of Native Americans, Indian Tribes, Alaska Native Villages, Native Hawaiians, tribal entities, tribally designated housing entities, or tribal housing resident organizations. This includes, but is not limited to: Programs authorized pursuant to the Native American Housing Assistance and Self-Determination Act of 1966 (NAHASDA) (25 U.S.C. 4101 et seq.), as amended; the Community Development Block Grant Program for Indian Tribes and Alaska Native Villages authorized by section 106 of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974 (42 U.S.C. 5306); the Indian Home Loan Guarantee Program authorized by section 184 of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1992 (12 U.S.C. 1715z-13a); the Native Hawaiian Loan Guarantee Program authorized by section 184A of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1992 (12 U.S.C. 1715z-13b); and Rural Innovation Fund grants and Rural Housing and Economic Development grants awarded to Indian Tribes and tribal entities by the Assistant Secretary for Community Planning and Development, as may be authorized by HUD appropriations acts.

    Only the Assistant Secretary for Public and Indian Housing is delegated the authority to issue a final regulation or a Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA). The authority delegated herein to the Assistant Secretary, the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary and the General Deputy Assistant Secretary includes the authority to waive regulations and statutes, but for the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary and the General Deputy Assistant Secretary the authority to waive statutes is limited in Section B below.

    Section B. Authority Excepted

    Authority delegated under section A does not include the power to sue or be sued. Also, the authority delegated under section A to the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary and General Deputy Assistant Secretary does not include the authority to waive the following statutes:

    1. Waivers of obligation and expenditure deadlines for capital funds under 42 U.S.C. 1437g(j)(2);

    2. Waivers of Moving to Work demonstration authority under Section 204 of the Omnibus Consolidated Recessions and Appropriations Act of 1996 (Pub. L. 104-134);

    3. Waivers of requirements for grants to Department of Hawaiian Homelands where compliance is impossible due to circumstances beyond the control of grantees under 25 U.S.C. 4222.

    Section C. Authority To Redelegate

    In accordance with a written redelegation of authority, the Assistant Secretary, the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary and the General Deputy Assistant Secretary for PIH may further redelegate specific authority. Redelegated authority to PIH Deputy Assistant Secretaries or other ranking PIH program officials does not supersede the authority of the Assistant Secretary as designee of the Secretary. The three existing redelegations of authority for PIH published on August 4, 2011 at 76 FR 47228, 76 FR 47229 and 76 FR 47231 remain in effect.

    Section D. Exceptions to Authority To Further Redelegate

    The authority to redelegate does not include any power or authority under law specifically required of the Secretary of HUD, the Assistant Secretary of PIH, the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of PIH or the General Deputy Assistant Secretary of PIH. Authority excepted includes:

    1. The authority to issue regulations;

    2. The authority to issue notices to clarify regulations;

    3. The authority to issue notices of funding availability (NOFAs), handbooks, notices and other HUD policy directives;

    4. The authority to impose remedies for substantial noncompliance with the requirements of NAHASDA (25 U.S.C. 4101 et seq) and/or its implementing regulations;

    5. The authority to declare a failure to comply with the regulations governing Community Development Block Grants for Indian Tribes and Alaska Native Villages; and

    6. The authority delegated herein to the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary to waive regulations and statutes with the exception of those statutes listed in Section B.

    Section E. Authority Superseded

    The previous delegations of authority from the Secretary for HUD to the Assistant Secretary for PIH are hereby revoked and superseded by this delegation of authority, including the previous delegation of authority for PIH published on August 4, 2011 (76 FR 47224).

    Section F. Authority To Represent HUD

    This consolidated delegation of authority is conclusive evidence of the authority of the Assistant Secretary for PIH, the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary and the General Deputy Assistant Secretary or those with redelegated authority, to represent the Secretary and to execute, in the name of the Secretary, any instrument or document relinquishing or transferring any right, title or interest of the Department in real or personal property. The Secretary may revoke the authority authorized herein, in whole or in part, at any time.

    Section G. Consultation and Coordination With the General Counsel

    The General Counsel shall consult and advise the Assistant Secretary for PIH, the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary and the General Deputy Assistant Secretary as required and when requested and to enter into such protocols as administratively agreed to by the General Counsel and the Assistant Secretary for PIH, the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary or the General Deputy Assistant Secretary for PIH. This consolidated delegation of authority is to be exercised consistently with the delegation of the Secretary to the General Counsel.

    Authority:

    Section 7(d) of the Department of Housing and Urban Development Act, as amended, (42 U.S.C. 3535(d)).

    Dated: March 25, 2015. Julián Castro, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07918 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4210-67-P
    DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE Notice of Lodging Proposed Consent Decree

    In accordance with Departmental Policy, 28 CFR 50.7, notice is hereby given that a proposed Partial Consent Decree in United States v. Sainz, et al., Case No. 1:15-cv-21212-RNS, was lodged with the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida, Miami Division, on March 27, 2015.

    The proposed Partial Consent Decree concerns a complaint filed by the United States, on behalf of the United States Army Corps of Engineers, against Juan Carlos Sainz, Siramad Trujillo-Sainz, Victor Ortega, Narinedat Roy, Sainz Homes LLC, Sion Home's Builders LLC and Sion Homes LLC, to obtain injunctive relief and civil penalties for violations of Sections 301 and 404 of the Clean Water Act, 33 U.S.C. 1311 and 1344. The proposed Partial Consent Decree resolves these allegations against Juan Carlos Sainz, Siramad Trujillo-Sainz, and Sainz Homes LLC by requiring these Defendants to mitigate the losses of ecological functions resulting from the violation and directing them to pay a civil penalty.

    The Department of Justice will accept written comments relating to this proposed Partial Consent Decree for thirty (30) days from the date of publication of this Notice. Please address comments to Andrew J. Doyle, Senior Attorney, United States Department of Justice, Environment and Natural Resources Division, Environmental Defense Section, Post Office Box 7611, Washington, DC 20044 and refer to United States v. Sainz, et al., DJ # 90-5-1-1-20150.

    The proposed Partial Consent Decree may be examined at the Clerk's Office, United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida, Miami Division, 400 North Miami Avenue, Miami, FL 33128. In addition, the proposed Partial Consent Decree may be examined electronically at http://www.justice.gov/enrd/Consent_Decrees.html.

    Cherie L. Rogers, Assistant Section Chief, Environmental Defense Section, Environment and Natural Resources Division.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07891 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE P
    DEPARTMENT OF LABOR Office of the Secretary Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Labor Market Information Cooperative Agreement ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Labor (DOL) is submitting the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) sponsored information collection request (ICR) revision titled, “Labor Market Information Cooperative Agreement,” to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and approval for use in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.). Public comments on the ICR are invited.

    DATES:

    The OMB will consider all written comments that agency receives on or before May 7, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    A copy of this ICR with applicable supporting documentation; including a description of the likely respondents, proposed frequency of response, and estimated total burden may be obtained free of charge from the RegInfo.gov Web site at http://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/PRAViewICR?ref_nbr=201503-1220-001 (this link will only become active on the day following publication of this notice) or by contacting Michel Smyth by telephone at 202-693-4129, TTY 202-693-8064, (these are not toll-free numbers) or sending an email to [email protected]

    Submit comments about this request by mail or courier to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Attn: OMB Desk Officer for DOL-BLS, Office of Management and Budget, Room 10235, 725 17th Street NW., Washington, DC 20503; by Fax: 202-395-6881 (this is not a toll-free number); or by email: [email protected] Commenters are encouraged, but not required, to send a courtesy copy of any comments by mail or courier to the U.S. Department of Labor-OASAM, Office of the Chief Information Officer, Attn: Departmental Information Compliance Management Program, Room N1301, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20210; or by email: [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Contact Michel Smyth by telephone at 202-693-4129, TTY 202-693-8064, (these are not toll-free numbers) or sending an email to [email protected]

    Authority:

    44 U.S.C. 3507(a)(1)(D).

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This ICR seeks approval under the PRA for revisions to the Labor Market Information (LMI) Cooperative Agreement information collection. The LMI Cooperative Agreement includes all information needed by a State Workforce Agency to apply for funds to assist it in operating one or more of the four BLS LMI programs and to report on the status of the obligation and expenditure of any such funds as well as to close out the Cooperative Agreement. This information collection has been classified as a revision, because of updates to the Cooperative Agreement application instructions and materials. BLS Authorizing Statute sections 1 and 2, Wagner-Peyser Act as Amended section 14, and Federal Grant and Cooperative Agreement Act of 1977 section 6 authorize this information collection. See 29 U.S.C. 1, 2, 49L-1; 31 U.S.C. 6305.

    This information collection is subject to the PRA. A Federal agency generally cannot conduct or sponsor a collection of information, and the public is generally not required to respond to an information collection, unless it is approved by the OMB under the PRA and displays a currently valid OMB Control Number. In addition, notwithstanding any other provisions of law, no person shall generally be subject to penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information that does not display a valid Control Number. See 5 CFR 1320.5(a) and 1320.6. The DOL obtains OMB approval for this information collection under Control Number 1220-0079. The current approval is scheduled to expire on May 31, 2015; however, the DOL notes that existing information collection requirements submitted to the OMB receive a month-to-month extension while they undergo review. New requirements would only take effect upon OMB approval. For additional substantive information about this ICR, see the related notice published in the Federal Register on November 12, 2014 (79 FR 67193).

    Interested parties are encouraged to send comments to the OMB, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs at the address shown in the ADDRESSES section within thirty (30) days of publication of this notice in the Federal Register. In order to help ensure appropriate consideration, comments should mention OMB Control Number 1220-0079. The OMB is particularly interested in comments that:

    • Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility;

    • Evaluate the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;

    • Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and

    • Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses.

    Agency: DOL-BLS.

    Title of Collection: Labor Market Information Cooperative Agreement.

    OMB Control Number: 1220-0079.

    Affected Public: State, Local, and Tribal Governments.

    Total Estimated Number of Respondents: 54.

    Total Estimated Number of Responses: 1,024.

    Total Estimated Annual Time Burden: 928 hours.

    Total Estimated Annual Other Costs Burden: $0.

    Dated: April 1, 2015. Michel Smyth, Departmental Clearance Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07893 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4510-24-P
    DEPARTMENT OF LABOR Occupational Safety and Health Administration [Docket No. OSHA-2011-0008] Standard on Commercial Diving Operations; Extension of the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Approval of Information Collection (Paperwork) Requirements AGENCY:

    Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Labor.

    ACTION:

    Request for public comments.

    SUMMARY:

    OSHA solicits public comments concerning its proposal to extend OMB approval of the information collection requirements specified in the Standard on Commercial Diving Operations (29 CFR part 1910, subpart T).

    DATES:

    Comments must be submitted (postmarked, sent, or received) June 8, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Electronically: You may submit comments and attachments electronically at http://www.regulations.gov, which is the Federal eRulemaking Portal. Follow the instructions online for submitting comments.

    Facsimile: If your comments, including attachments, are not longer than 10 pages you may fax them to the OSHA Docket Office at (202) 693-1648.

    Mail, hand delivery, express mail, messenger, or courier service: When using this method, you must submit a copy of your comments and attachments to the OSHA Docket Office, Docket No. OSHA-2011-0008, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Room N-2625, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210. Deliveries (hand, express mail, messenger, and courier service) are accepted during the Department of Labor's and Docket Office's normal business hours, 8:15 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., e.t.

    Instructions: All submissions must include the Agency name and the OSHA docket number (OSHA-2011-0008) for the Information Collection Request (ICR). All comments, including any personal information you provide, are placed in the public docket without change, and may be made available online at http://www.regulations.gov. For further information on submitting comments see the “Public Participation” heading in the section of this notice titled SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.

    Docket: To read or download comments or other material in the docket, go to http://www.regulations.gov or the OSHA Docket Office at the address above. All documents in the docket (including this Federal Register notice) are listed in the http://www.regulations.gov index; however, some information (e.g., copyrighted material) is not publicly available to read or download from the Web site. All submissions, including copyrighted material, are available for inspection and copying at the OSHA Docket Office. You may also contact Theda Kenney at the address below to obtain a copy of the ICR.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Theda Kenney or Todd Owen, Directorate of Standards and Guidance, OSHA, U.S. Department of Labor, Room N-3609, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone (202) 693-2222.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background

    The Department of Labor, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent (i.e., employer) burden, conducts a preclearance consultation program to provide the public with an opportunity to comment on proposed and continuing information collection requirements in accord with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA-95) (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)). This program ensures that information is in the desired format, reporting burden (time and costs) is minimal, collection instruments are clearly understood, and OSHA's estimate of the information collection burden is accurate. The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (the OSH Act) (29 U.S.C. 651 et seq.) authorizes information collection by employers as necessary or appropriate for enforcement of the Act or for developing information regarding the causes and prevention of occupational injuries, illnesses, and accidents (29 U.S.C. 657). The OSH Act also requires that OSHA obtain such information with minimum burden upon employers, especially those operating small businesses, and to reduce to the maximum extent feasible unnecessary duplication of efforts in obtaining information (29 U.S.C. 657).

    The following provisions of the Commercial Diving Operations Standards (the “Standards”) contain paperwork requirements: §§ 1910.401(b); 1910.410(a)(3) and (a)(4); 1910.420(a) and (b); 1910.421(b), (f), and (h); 1910.422(e); 1910.423(b)(1)(ii) through (b)(2), (d), and (e); 1910.430(a), (b)(4), (c)(1)(i), (c)(3)(i), (f)(3)(ii), and (g)(2); and 1910.440(a)(2) and (b). These provisions require that employers: Notify OSHA if they deviate from the operational requirements of the Standards; train every diver in cardiopulmonary resuscitation and first aid, and mixed-gas divers (and those who control exposure of divers to mixed-gas breathing conditions) in diving-related physics and physiology; develop and make available to employees a safe practices manual; maintain a list of emergency telephone or call numbers at the diving location; brief dive team members on diving-related tasks, safety procedures, hazards, and revisions to operating procedures; display a code flag “A” if diving from a surface other than a vessel in navigable waters; develop and maintain a depth-time profile for each dive; and instruct divers on reporting diving-related illnesses and injuries, and the procedures specified for detecting, treating, and preventing these problems.

    The Standards also mandate that employers: Record and maintain diving logs that contain required information; investigate and provide a written evaluation of, any incident involving decompression sickness; mark diving umbilicals as required; inspect, test, and calibrate specified diving equipment; record modifications, repairs, tests, calibrations, and maintenance performed on any diving equipment; make a record of diving-related injuries and illnesses that result in a diver remaining in a hospital for over 24 hours; and create, and disclose to specified parties on request, the written records required by the Standard, and maintain these records for specified periods.

    The Standards' paperwork requirements allow employers to deviate from established diving practices and tailor diving operations to unusually hazardous diving conditions, and to analyze diving records (including hospitalization and treatment records) for information they can use to improve diving operations. These requirements are also a direct and efficient means for employers to inform dive-team members about diving-related hazards, procedures to use in avoiding and controlling these hazards, and recognizing and treating diving-related illnesses and injuries. Additionally, employers can review equipment records to ensure that employees performed the required actions, and that the equipment is in safe working order.

    Disclosing these records to employees and their designated representatives permits them to identify operational and equipment conditions that may contribute to diving accidents or diving-related medical conditions.

    II. Special Issues for Comment

    OSHA has a particular interest in comments on the following issues:

    • Whether the proposed information collection requirements are necessary for the proper performance of the Agency's functions, including whether the information is useful;

    • The accuracy of OSHA's estimate of the burden (time and costs) of the information collection requirements, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;

    • The quality, utility, and clarity of the information collected; and

    • Ways to minimize the burden on employers who must comply; for example, by using automated or other technological information collection and transmission techniques.

    III. Proposed Actions

    OSHA is requesting an adjustment decrease of 81 burden hours from 205,096 to 205,015 hours. The Agency is no longer calculating burden hours or costs for employers who provide information to the compliance officers during an OSHA inspection; inspections are outside the scope of PRA-95. The Agency will summarize any comments submitted in response to this notice and will include this summary in the request to OMB.

    Type of Review: Extension of a currently approved collection.

    Title: Commercial Diving Operations Standard (29 CFR part 1910, subpart T).

    OMB Control Number: 1218-0069.

    Affected Public: Businesses or other for-profits; Not-for-profit institutions; Federal Government; State, Local or Tribal Governments.

    Number of Respondents: 3,000.

    Frequency of Responses: On occasion; annually.

    Total Responses: 3,996,377.

    Average Time per Response: Varies from five minutes (.08 hour) for employers to maintain records to 12 hours for employers to update their compliance plans.

    Estimated Total Burden Hours: 205,015.

    Estimated Cost (Operation and Maintenance): $0.

    IV. Public Participation—Submission of Comments on This Notice and Internet Access to Comments and Submissions

    You may submit comments in response to this document as follows: (1) Electronically at http://www.regulations.gov, which is the Federal eRulemaking Portal; (2) by facsimile (fax); or (3) by hard copy. All comments, attachments, and other material must identify the Agency name and the OSHA docket number (Docket No. OSHA-2011-0008) for the ICR. You may supplement electronic submissions by uploading document files electronically. If you wish to mail additional materials in reference to an electronic or facsimile submission, you must submit them to the OSHA Docket Office (see the section of this notice titled ADDRESSES). The additional materials must clearly identify your electronic comments by your name, date, and the docket number so the Agency can attach them to your comments.

    Because of security procedures, the use of regular mail may cause a significant delay in the receipt of comments. For information about security procedures concerning the delivery of materials by hand, express delivery, messenger, or courier service, please contact the OSHA Docket Office at (202) 693-2350, (TTY (877) 889-5627). Comments and submissions are posted without change at http://www.regulations.gov. Therefore, OSHA cautions commenters about submitting personal information such as social security numbers and date of birth. Although all submissions are listed in the http://www.regulations.gov index, some information (e.g., copyrighted material) is not publicly available to read or download from this Web site.

    All submissions, including copyrighted material, are available for inspection and copying at the OSHA Docket Office. Information on using the http://www.regulations.gov Web site to submit comments and access the docket is available at the Web site's “User Tips” link. Contact the OSHA Docket Office for information about materials not available from the Web site, and for assistance in using the Internet to locate docket submissions.

    V. Authority and Signature

    David Michaels, Ph.D., MPH, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health, directed the preparation of this notice. The authority for this notice is the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3506 et seq.) and Secretary of Labor's Order No. 1-2012 (77 FR 3912).

    Signed at Washington, DC, on April 2, 2015. David Michaels, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health.
    [FR Doc. 2015-07937 Filed 4-6-15; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE CODE 4510-26-P
    DEPARTMENT OF LABOR Occupational Safety and Health Administration [Docket No. OSHA-2012-0002] Asbestos in Construction Standard; Extension of the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Approval of Information Collection (Paperwork) Requirements AGENCY:

    Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Labor.

    ACTION:

    Request for public comments.

    SUMMARY:

    OSHA solicits public comments concerning its proposal to extend the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) approval of the information collection requirements specified in the Asbestos in Construction Standard (29 CFR 1926.1101).

    DATES:

    Comments must be submitted (postmarked, sent, or received) by June 8, 2015.

    ADDRESSES:

    Electronically: You may submit comments and attachments electronically at http://www.regulations.gov, which is the Federal eRulemaking Portal. Follow the instructions online for submitting comments.

    Facsimile: If your comments, including attachments, are not longer than 10 pages you may fax them to the OSHA Docket Office at (202) 693-1648.

    Mail, hand delivery, express mail, messenger, or courier service: When using this method, you must submit your comments and attachments to the OSHA Docket Office, Docket No. OSHA-2012-0002, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Room N-2625, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210. Deliveries (hand, express mail, messenger, and courier service) are accepted during the Department of Labor's and Docket Office's normal business hours, 8:15 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., e.t.

    Instructions: All submissions must include the Agency name and the OSHA docket number (OSHA-2012-0002) for the Information Collection Request (ICR). All comments, including any personal information you provide, are placed in the public docket without change, and may be made available online at http://www.regulations.gov. For further information on submitting comments see the “Public Participation” heading in the section of this notice titled SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.

    Docket: To read or download comments or other material in the docket, go to http://www.regulations.gov or the OSHA Docket Office at the address above. All documents in the docket (including this Federal Register notice) are listed in the http://www.regulations.gov index; however, some information (e.g., copyrighted material) is not publicly available to read or download through the Web site. All submissions, including copyrighted material, are available for inspection and copying at the OSHA Docket Office. You also may contact Theda Kenney at the address below to obtain a copy of the ICR.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Theda Kenney, Directorate of Standards and Guidance, OSHA, U.S. Department of Labor, Room N-3609, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone (202) 693-2222.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background

    The Department of Labor, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent (i.e., employer) burden, conducts a preclearance consultation program to provide the public with an opportunity to comment on proposed and continuing information collection requirements in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)). This program ensures that information is in the desired format, reporting burden (time and costs) is minimal, collection instruments are clearly understood, and OSHA's estimate of the information collection burden is accurate. The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (the OSH Act) (29 U.S.C. 651 et seq.) authorizes information collection by employers as necessary or appropriate for enforcement of the OSH Act or for developing information regarding the causes and prevention of occupational injuries, illnesses, and accidents (29 U.S.C. 657). The OSH Act also requires that OSHA obtain such information with minimum burden upon employers, especially those operating small businesses, and to reduce to the maximum extent feasible unnecessary duplication of efforts in obtaining information (29 U.S.C. 657).

    The standard protects workers from adverse health effects from occupational exposure to asbestos, including lung cancer, mesothelioma, asbestosis (an emphysema-like condition) and gastrointestinal cancer. The standard requires employers to monitor worker exposure, to provide medical surveillance, and maintain accurate records of worker exposure to asbestos. These records will be used by employers and workers and the Government to ensure that workers are not harmed by exposure to asbestos in the workplace.

    II. Special Issues for Comment

    OSHA has a particular interest in comments on the following issues:

    • Whether the proposed information collection requirements are necessary for the proper performance of the Agency's functions, including whether the information is useful;

    • The accuracy of OSHA's estimate of the burden (time and costs) of the information collection requirements, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;

    • The quality, utility, and clarity of the information collected; and

    • Ways to minimize the burden on employers who must comply; for example, by using automated or other technological information collection and transmission techniques.

    III. Proposed Actions

    The Agency is requesting an adjustment decrease of 1,077,068 burden hours (from 4,929,794 to 3,852,726 hours) primarily due to the Agency's estimates, based on updated data, that the number of establishments and workers affected by the Standard have decreased. The operation and maintenance cost increased from $28,816,390 to $36,157,231 due to the estimated increase in the cost of exposure monitoring samples and medical examinations.

    Type of Review: Extension of a currently approved collection.

    Title: Asbestos in Construction Standard (29 CFR 1926.1101).

    OMB Number: 1218-0134.

    Affected Public: Business or other for-profits.

    Number of Respondents: 1,044,561.

    Frequency of Response: On occasion.

    Total Responses: 39,251,952.

    Average Time per Response: Time per response ranges from 5 minutes to maintain records to 1.67 hours to complete a medical examination.

    Estimated Total Burden Hours: 3,852,726.

    Estimated Cost (Operation and Maintenance): $36,157,231.

    IV. Public Participation—Submission of Comments on This Notice and Internet Access to Comments and Submissions

    You may submit comments in response to this document as follows: (1) Electronically at http://www.regulations.gov, which is the Federal eRulemaking Portal; (2) by facsimile; or (3) by hard copy. All comments, attachments, and other material must identify the Agency name and the OSHA docket number for this ICR (Docket No. OSHA-2012-0002). You may supplement electronic submissions by uploading document files electronically. If you wish to mail additional materials in reference to an electronic or facsimile submission, you must submit them to the OSHA Docket Office (see the section of this notice titled ADDRESSES). The additional materials must clearly identify your electronic comments by your name, date, and docket number so the Agency can attach them to your comments.

    Because of security procedures, the use of regular mail may cause a significant delay in the receipt of comments. For information about security procedures concerning the delivery of materials by hand, express delivery, messenger, or courier service, please contact the OSHA Docket Office at (202) 693-2350, (TTY (877) 889-5627).

    Comments and submissions are posted without change at http://www.regulations.gov. Therefore, OSHA cautions commenters about submitting personal information such as social security numbers and date of birth. Although all submissions are listed in the http://www.regulations.gov index, some information (e.g., copyrighted material) is not publicly available to read or download from this Web site. All submissions, including copyrighted material, are available for inspection and copying at the OSHA Docket Office. Information on using the http://www.regulations.gov Web site to submit comments and access the docket is available at the Web site's “User Tips” link.

    Contact the OSHA Docket Office for information about materials not available from the Web site, and for assistance in using the Internet to locate docket submissions.

    V. Authority and Signature

    David Michaels, Ph.D., MPH, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health, directed the