Federal Register Vol. 81, No.16,

Federal Register Volume 81, Issue 16 (January 26, 2016)

Page Range4159-4571
FR Document

81_FR_16
Current View
Page and SubjectPDF
81 FR 4267 - Sunshine Act NoticePDF
81 FR 4344 - Sunshine Act Meetings; NoticePDF
81 FR 4221 - Special Enrollment Examination User Fee for Enrolled AgentsPDF
81 FR 4299 - Sunshine Act; Notice of Meeting; CorrectionPDF
81 FR 4349 - OldWeb sites.com, Inc., RPHL Acquisition Corp. (a/k/a Rockport Healthcare Group, Inc.), The Brainy Brands Company, Inc., TheraBiogen, Inc., U.S. Helicopter Corporation, and Vicor Technologies, Inc.; Order of Suspension of TradingPDF
81 FR 4346 - In the Matter of 99 Cent Stuff, Inc., Bizzingo, Inc., Clicker, Inc., Incentra Solutions, Inc., Maxray Optical Technology Co. Ltd., and Peer Review Mediation & Arbitration, Inc., Order of Suspension of TradingPDF
81 FR 4250 - Foreign-Trade Zone 30-Salt Lake City, Utah; Application for Subzone, Cabela's Inc.; Tooele, UtahPDF
81 FR 4250 - Approval of Subzone Status; CNH Industrial America LLC; Benson, MinnesotaPDF
81 FR 4253 - Tapered Roller Bearings and Parts Thereof, Finished and Unfinished, From the People's Republic of China: Notice of Court Decision Not in Harmony With Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review and Notice of Amended Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2007-2008PDF
81 FR 4254 - Export Trade Certificate of ReviewPDF
81 FR 4255 - Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products From Taiwan: Postponement of Final Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair ValuePDF
81 FR 4327 - Approval of Saybolt LP as a Commercial GaugerPDF
81 FR 4289 - Draft National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Pesticide General Permit for Point Source Discharges From the Application of Pesticides; ReissuancePDF
81 FR 4328 - Proposed Flood Hazard DeterminationsPDF
81 FR 4249 - Foreign-Trade Zone 287-Tunica County, Mississippi; Application for Subzone; FTZ Networks, Inc., Olive Branch, MississippiPDF
81 FR 4294 - Office of Research and Development; Ambient Air Monitoring Reference and Equivalent Methods: Designation of a New Equivalent MethodPDF
81 FR 4326 - Notice of Revocation of Customs Broker's LicensePDF
81 FR 4326 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Prior DisclosurePDF
81 FR 4315 - Submission of OMB Review, 30-Day Comment Request; Conference, Meeting, Workshop, and Poster Session Registration Generic Clearance (OD)PDF
81 FR 4336 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Employee Retirement Income Security Act Summary Annual Report Requirement; CorrectionPDF
81 FR 4336 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Benefit Accuracy Measurement Program; CorrectionPDF
81 FR 4336 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Required Elements for Submission of the Unified or Combined State Plan and Plan Modifications Under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act; CorrectionPDF
81 FR 4365 - Surety Companies Acceptable on Federal Bonds-Change In State of Incorporation, Lexington National Insurance CorporationPDF
81 FR 4365 - Surety Companies Acceptable on Federal Bonds: Fair American Insurance and Reinsurance CompanyPDF
81 FR 4246 - Eleven Point Resource Advisory Committee MeetingPDF
81 FR 4346 - Sunshine Act MeetingPDF
81 FR 4335 - United States Assumption of Concurrent Federal Criminal Jurisdiction; Mille Lacs Band of OjibwePDF
81 FR 4342 - Sunshine Act MeetingsPDF
81 FR 4299 - Sunshine Act MeetingsPDF
81 FR 4338 - Sunshine Act MeetingPDF
81 FR 4360 - Notice of Opportunity for Public Comment on Federal Obligated Property Release at Cartersville-Bartow Airport, Cartersville, GeorgiaPDF
81 FR 4256 - Tapered Roller Bearings and Parts Thereof, Finished and Unfinished, From the People's Republic of China: Notice of Court Decision Not in Harmony With Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review and Notice of Amended Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative; 2008-2009PDF
81 FR 4239 - Oil and Natural Gas Sector: National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants; Extension of Comment PeriodPDF
81 FR 4296 - Notification of a Public Meeting of the Science Advisory Board Environmental Economics Advisory CommitteePDF
81 FR 4297 - Board of Scientific Counselors Executive Committee; Notification of Public Teleconference and Public CommentPDF
81 FR 4177 - Revised Critical Infrastructure Protection Reliability StandardsPDF
81 FR 4251 - Tapered Roller Bearings and Parts Thereof, Finished and Unfinished, From the People's Republic of China: Notice of Correction to the Final Results of the 2013-2014 Antidumping Duty Administrative ReviewPDF
81 FR 4252 - Seamless Refined Copper Pipe and Tube From the People's Republic of China and Mexico: Preliminary Results of the Sunset Reviews of the Antidumping Duty OrdersPDF
81 FR 4329 - Technical Mapping Advisory CouncilPDF
81 FR 4270 - Notice of Interim Waiver and Request for Waiver From Panasonic Appliances Refrigeration Systems Corporation of America Corporation (PAPRSA) From the Department of Energy Refrigerator and Refrigerator-Freezer Test ProceduresPDF
81 FR 4330 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection; Comment Request; General Admissions Applications (Long and Short) and Stipend FormsPDF
81 FR 4269 - Proposed Agency Information CollectionPDF
81 FR 4268 - Orders Granting Authority To Import and Export Natural Gas, To Import and Export Liquefied Natural Gas, Denying Request for Rehearing, and To Vacate Prior Authorization During December 2015PDF
81 FR 4223 - Fisher Houses and Other Temporary LodgingPDF
81 FR 4363 - Notice of Receipt of Petition for Decision That Nonconforming 2009 Buell 1125R, Ulysses XB, Lightning XB, and Blast Motorcycles Are Eligible for ImportationPDF
81 FR 4362 - Notice of Receipt of Petition for Decision That Nonconforming 2010 Harley-Davidson FX, XL and VR Motorcycles Are Eligible for ImportationPDF
81 FR 4299 - Notice of Agreement FiledPDF
81 FR 4311 - Request for Nominations on the National Mammography Quality Assurance Advisory CommitteePDF
81 FR 4311 - Food and Drug Administration/Xavier University PharmaLink Conference: Increasing Product ConfidencePDF
81 FR 4343 - Committee on Equal Opportunities in Science and Engineering; Notice of MeetingPDF
81 FR 4298 - Instructions for FCC Form 175 Application to Participate in the Forward Auction (Auction 1002)PDF
81 FR 4295 - Information Collection Request Submitted to OMB for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Hazardous Chemical Reporting: Emergency and Hazardous Chemical Inventory Forms (Tier I and Tier II) (Renewal)PDF
81 FR 4266 - Proposed Collection; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 4322 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 4325 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 4346 - Advisory Committee On Reactor Safeguards (ACRS); Meeting of the ACRS Subcommittee on Fukushima; Revised Date of the February 19, 2016, ACRS Subcommittee MeetingPDF
81 FR 4344 - Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards; Notice of MeetingPDF
81 FR 4360 - Proposed Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 4305 - International Drug Scheduling; Convention on Psychotropic Substances; Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs; World Health Organization; Scheduling Recommendations; Acetylfentanyl; MT-45; para-Methoxymethylamphetamine (PMMA); α-Pyrrolidinovalerophenone (α-PVP); para-Methyl-4-methylaminorex (4,4′-DMAR); Methoxetamine (MXE); Phenazepam; Request for CommentsPDF
81 FR 4310 - Determination That IZBA (Travoprost Ophthalmic Solution), 0.003 Percent, Was Not Withdrawn From Sale for Reasons of Safety or EffectivenessPDF
81 FR 4288 - Information Collection Request Submitted to OMB for Review and Approval; Comment Request; NSPS for Phosphate Fertilizer Industry (Renewal)PDF
81 FR 4303 - Design Considerations and Premarket Submission Recommendations for Interoperable Medical Devices; Draft Guidance for Industry and Food and Drug Administration Staff; AvailabilityPDF
81 FR 4275 - Combined Notice of FilingsPDF
81 FR 4331 - DHS Data Privacy and Integrity Advisory CommitteePDF
81 FR 4280 - City of Broken Bow, Oklahoma; Notice of Application Accepted for Filing, Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and ProtestsPDF
81 FR 4279 - City of Broken Bow, Oklahoma; Notice of Application Accepted for Filing, Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and ProtestsPDF
81 FR 4274 - Sage Grouse Energy Project, LLC v. PacifiCorp; Notice of ComplaintPDF
81 FR 4276 - National Fuel Gas Supply Corporation; Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Assessment for the Proposed Line QP, Line Q, and Queen Storage Project Request for Comments on Environmental IssuesPDF
81 FR 4282 - Combined Notice of Filings #2PDF
81 FR 4284 - Combined Notice of Filings #1PDF
81 FR 4278 - Thoreson Family Ranch, LLC; Notice of Preliminary Determination of a Qualifying Conduit Hydropower Facility and Soliciting Comments and Motions To IntervenePDF
81 FR 4282 - Energy Resources USA, Inc.; Notice of Preliminary Permit Application Accepted for Filing And Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Competing ApplicationsPDF
81 FR 4276 - Energy Resources USA, Inc.; Notice of Preliminary Permit Application Accepted for Filing and Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Competing ApplicationsPDF
81 FR 4281 - Palo Verde Power; Notice of Preliminary Permit Application Accepted for Filing and Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Competing ApplicationsPDF
81 FR 4285 - Combined Notice of FilingsPDF
81 FR 4283 - San Diego Gas & Electric Company v. Sellers of Energy and Ancillary Services Into Markets Operated by the California Independent System Operator Corporation and the California Power Exchanges; Notice of Compliance FilingPDF
81 FR 4286 - Paulsboro Natural Gas Pipeline Company, LLC; Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Assessment for the Proposed Delaware River Pipeline Relocation Project and Request for Comments on Environmental IssuesPDF
81 FR 4278 - Combined Notice of FilingsPDF
81 FR 4300 - Revised Jurisdictional Thresholds for Section 8 of the Clayton ActPDF
81 FR 4299 - Revised Jurisdictional Thresholds For Section 7A of the Clayton ActPDF
81 FR 4297 - Notice of Issuance of Statement of Federal Financial Accounting Technical Release 16PDF
81 FR 4298 - Notice to All Interested Parties of the Termination of the Receivership of 10450, First Cherokee State Bank, Woodstock, GeorgiaPDF
81 FR 4298 - Notice of Change in Subject Matter of Agency MeetingPDF
81 FR 4191 - Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Upper Mississippi River, St. Paul, MNPDF
81 FR 4302 - Request for Nominations of Candidates To Serve on the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP)PDF
81 FR 4303 - Board of Scientific Counselors, National Center for Health Statistics (BSC, NCHS)PDF
81 FR 4163 - Airworthiness Directives; The Boeing Company AirplanesPDF
81 FR 4248 - Notice of Public Meeting of the Hawai`i State Advisory Committee for the Purpose of Considering Its Report on Micronesian Immigration to Hawai`iPDF
81 FR 4245 - Notice of Request for Revision to and Extension of Approval of an Information Collection; Importation of Wooden Handicrafts From ChinaPDF
81 FR 4250 - Bureau of Industry and SecurityPDF
81 FR 4247 - Information Collection Activity; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 4246 - Davy Crockett Resource Advisory Committee MeetingPDF
81 FR 4344 - Proposal Review Panel for Physics; Notice of MeetingPDF
81 FR 4343 - Advisory Committee for Mathematical and Physical Sciences; Notice of MeetingPDF
81 FR 4342 - Proposal Review Panel for Ocean Sciences Notice of MeetingPDF
81 FR 4312 - Advisory Committee on Heritable Disorders in Newborns and Children; Notice of MeetingPDF
81 FR 4334 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Request for Comments on the Alaska Beak Deformity ObservationsPDF
81 FR 4337 - Petitions for Modification of Application of Existing Mandatory Safety StandardsPDF
81 FR 4364 - Agency Request for Renewal of a Previously Approved Information Collection; Prioritization and Allocation Authority Exercised by the Secretary of Transportation Under the Defense Production ActPDF
81 FR 4341 - Notice of Intent to Grant Exclusive Term LicensePDF
81 FR 4332 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Extension, With Changes, of an Existing Information CollectionPDF
81 FR 4341 - NASA Advisory Council; Science Committee; Planetary Science Subcommittee; MeetingPDF
81 FR 4335 - Certain Amorphous Silica Fabric From China; Institution of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Investigations and Scheduling of Preliminary Phase InvestigationsPDF
81 FR 4191 - Medical Examination of Aliens-Revisions to Medical Screening ProcessPDF
81 FR 4359 - Approval of Noise Compatibility Program for Laughlin/Bullhead International Airport, Bullhead City, ArizonaPDF
81 FR 4220 - Proposed Revocation of Class D Airspace; Vancouver, WAPDF
81 FR 4248 - Notice of Public Meeting of the Michigan Advisory Committee for a Meeting to Discuss Preparations for a Public Hearing Regarding the Civil Rights Impact of Civil Forfeiture Practices in the StatePDF
81 FR 4206 - Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Crab Rationalization ProgramPDF
81 FR 4258 - Award Competitions for Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) Centers in the States of Alabama, Arkansas, California, Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Utah and VermontPDF
81 FR 4225 - Promulgation of State Implementation Plan Revisions; Infrastructure Requirements for the 2008 Lead, 2008 Ozone, 2010 NO2,PDF
81 FR 4159 - SNAP Requirement for National Directory of New Hires Employment Verification and Annual Program Activity ReportingPDF
81 FR 4264 - Endangered and Threatened Species; Initiation of 5-Year Review for Southern Resident Killer WhalesPDF
81 FR 4249 - Submission for OMB Review; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 4352 - Submission for OMB Review; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 4353 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NYSE Arca, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change Amending the Fees for NYSE Arca BBO and NYSE Arca TradesPDF
81 FR 4347 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; International Securities Exchange, LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change Relating to Back-Up Primary Market MakersPDF
81 FR 4350 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NYSE MKT LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change Modifying the NYSE Amex Options Fee SchedulePDF
81 FR 4247 - Submission for OMB Review; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 4266 - Submission for OMB Review; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 4265 - Submission for OMB Review; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 4217 - Airworthiness Directives; Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. AirplanesPDF
81 FR 4214 - Airworthiness Directives; Piper Aircraft, Inc. AirplanesPDF
81 FR 4344 - Notice of Permit Modification Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978PDF
81 FR 4315 - National Institute on Aging; Notice of Closed MeetingPDF
81 FR 4319 - National Cancer Institute; Notice of Closed MeetingsPDF
81 FR 4321 - National Cancer Institute; Notice of MeetingPDF
81 FR 4316 - Center For Scientific Review; Notice of Closed MeetingsPDF
81 FR 4317 - Center for Scientific Review; Notice of Closed MeetingsPDF
81 FR 4313 - National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases; Notice of Closed MeetingsPDF
81 FR 4322 - National Cancer Institute; Notice of Closed MeetingsPDF
81 FR 4319 - National Library of Medicine; Notice of Closed MeetingPDF
81 FR 4320 - National Library of Medicine; Notice of MeetingPDF
81 FR 4314 - National Library of Medicine; Notice of MeetingPDF
81 FR 4321 - National Library of Medicine; Notice of Closed MeetingsPDF
81 FR 4320 - National Library of Medicine; Notice of MeetingsPDF
81 FR 4300 - Notice of MeetingsPDF
81 FR 4301 - Meeting for Software Developers on the Common Formats for Patient Safety Data Collection and Event ReportingPDF
81 FR 4365 - Sanctions Actions Pursuant to Executive Order 13382PDF
81 FR 4165 - Airworthiness Directives; Engine Alliance Turbofan EnginesPDF
81 FR 4172 - Airworthiness Directives; CFM International S.A. Turbofan EnginesPDF
81 FR 4494 - Implementation of the Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity Provisions of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity ActPDF
81 FR 4239 - Catastrophic Health Emergency FundPDF
81 FR 4333 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Draft Recovery Plan for the Laguna Mountains SkipperPDF
81 FR 4167 - Airworthiness Directives; Airbus AirplanesPDF
81 FR 4169 - Airworthiness Directives; Airbus AirplanesPDF
81 FR 4469 - Small Business Size Standards for ManufacturingPDF
81 FR 4436 - Small Business Size Standards: Industries With Employee Based Size Standards Not Part of Manufacturing, Wholesale Trade, or Retail TradePDF
81 FR 4174 - Standard Instrument Approach Procedures, and Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle Departure Procedures; Miscellaneous AmendmentsPDF
81 FR 4175 - Standard Instrument Approach Procedures, and Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle Departure Procedures; Miscellaneous AmendmentsPDF
81 FR 4213 - Identifying and Reducing Regulatory BurdensPDF
81 FR 4368 - Energy Conservation Program: Energy Conservation Standards for PumpsPDF

Issue

81 16 Tuesday, January 26, 2016 Contents Agency Health Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality NOTICES Meetings: Healthcare Research and Quality Subcommittee, 4300-4301 2016-01354 Software Developers on the Common Formats for Patient Safety Data Collection and Event Reporting, 4301-4302 2016-01353 Agriculture Agriculture Department See

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

See

Food and Nutrition Service

See

Forest Service

See

National Institute of Food and Agriculture

See

Rural Utilities Service

PROPOSED RULES Identifying and Reducing Regulatory Burdens, 4213-4214 2016-00693
Animal Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Importation of Wooden Handicrafts from China, 4245-4246 2016-01439 Centers Disease Centers for Disease Control and Prevention NOTICES Meetings: Board of Scientific Counselors, National Center for Health Statistics, 4303 2016-01442 Requests for Nominations: Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, 4302-4303 2016-01443 Civil Rights Civil Rights Commission NOTICES Meetings: Hawai'i State Advisory Committee, 4248-4249 2016-01440 Michigan Advisory Committee, 4248 2016-01413 Coast Guard Coast Guard RULES Drawbridge Operations: Upper Mississippi River, St. Paul, MN, 4191 2016-01444 Commerce Commerce Department See

Foreign-Trade Zones Board

See

Industry and Security Bureau

See

International Trade Administration

See

National Institute of Standards and Technology

See

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 4249 2016-01395
Defense Department Defense Department NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 4266-4267 2016-01481 Election Election Assistance Commission NOTICES Meetings; Sunshine Act, 4267-4268 2016-01670 Energy Department Energy Department See

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Office

See

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

RULES Energy Conservation Program: Energy Conservation Standards for Pumps, 4368-4433 2016-00324 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 4269 2016-01493 Authority to Import and Export Natural Gas and Liquefied Natural Gas, etc: Ensorcia America, LLC, 4268-4269 2016-01492
Energy Efficiency Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Office NOTICES Interim Waiver and Request for Waiver from Refrigerator and Refrigerator-Freezer Test Procedures: Panasonic Appliances Refrigeration Systems Corporation of America, 4270-4274 2016-01496 Environmental Protection Environmental Protection Agency PROPOSED RULES Air Quality State Implementation Plans; Approvals and Promulgations: Montana -- Infrastructure Requirements for the 2008 Lead, 2008 Ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2, and 2012 PM2.5 National Ambient Air Quality Standards, 4225-4239 2016-01403 Oil and Natural Gas Sectors: National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants; Extension of Comment Period, 4239 2016-01508 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Hazardous Chemical Reporting—Emergency and Hazardous Chemical Inventory Forms (Tier I and Tier II), 4295-4296 2016-01482 NSPS for Phosphate Fertilizer Industry, 4288-4289 2016-01472 Designation of a New Equivalent Methods: Ambient Air Monitoring Reference, 4294-4295 2016-01560 Draft National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System: Pesticide General Permit for Point Source Discharges from the Application of Pesticides, 4289-4294 2016-01564 Meetings: Board of Scientific Counselors Executive Committee, 4297 2016-01506 Science Advisory Board Environmental Economics Advisory Committee, 4296-4297 2016-01507 Federal Accounting Federal Accounting Standards Advisory Board NOTICES Guidance: Federal Financial Accounting Technical Release, 4297-4298 2016-01449 Federal Aviation Federal Aviation Administration RULES Airworthiness Directives: Airbus Airplanes, 4167-4172 2016-00952 2016-01108 CFM International S.A. Turbofan Engines, 4172-4174 2016-01266 Engine Alliance Turbofan Engines, 4165-4167 2016-01268 The Boeing Company Airplanes, 4163-4165 2016-01441 Standard Instrument Approach Procedures, and Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle Departure Procedures; Miscellaneous Amendments, 4174-4177 2016-00878 2016-00880 PROPOSED RULES Airworthiness Directives: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. Airplanes, 4217-4220 2016-01381 Piper Aircraft, Inc. Airplanes, 4214-4217 2016-01380 Revocation of Class D Airspace: Vancouver, WA, 4220-4221 2016-01415 NOTICES Airport Property Releases: Cartersville-Bartow Airport, Cartersville, GA, 4360 2016-01510 Noise Compatibility Program Approvals: Laughlin/Bullhead International Airport, Bullhead City, AZ, 4359-4360 2016-01416 Federal Communications Federal Communications Commission NOTICES Instructions for for FCC Form 175 Application to Participate in the Forward Auction, Auction 1002, 4298 2016-01484 Federal Deposit Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation NOTICES Meetings: Changes in Subject Matter of Agency, 4298-4299 2016-01445 Terminations of Receivership: First Cherokee State Bank, Woodstock, GA, 4298 2016-01447 Federal Election Federal Election Commission NOTICES Meetings; Sunshine Act, 4299 2016-01516 Federal Emergency Federal Emergency Management Agency NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: General Admissions Applications (Long and Short) and Stipend Forms, 4330-4331 2016-01495 Meetings: Technical Mapping Advisory Council, 4329-4330 2016-01497 Proposed Flood Hazard Determinations, 4328-4329 2016-01563 Federal Energy Federal Energy Regulatory Commission RULES Critical Infrastructure Protection Reliability Standards, 4177-4191 2016-01505 NOTICES Applications: Broken Bow, OK, 4279-4281 2016-01466 2016-01467 Combined Filings, 4275, 4278, 4282-4286 2016-01453 2016-01454 2016-01457 2016-01462 2016-01463 2016-01470 Complaints: Sage Grouse Energy Project, LLC, v. PacifiCorp, 4274-4275 2016-01465 Compliance Filings: San Diego Gas and Electric Co. v. Sellers of Energy and Ancillary Services into Markets Operated by the California Independent System Operator Corp. and the California Power Exchanges, 4283-4284 2016-01456 Environmental Assessments; Availability, etc.: National Fuel Gas Supply Corp.; Line QP, Line Q, and Queen Storage Project, 4276-4278 2016-01464 Paulsboro Natural Gas Pipeline Co., LLC; Delaware River Pipeline Relocation Project, 4286-4288 2016-01455 Permit Applications: Energy Resources USA, Inc., 4276, 4282 2016-01459 2016-01460 Palo Verde Power, 4281-4282 2016-01458 Preliminary Determinations of a Qualifying Conduit Hydropower Facility: Thoreson Family Ranch, LLC, 4278-4279 2016-01461 Federal Maritime Federal Maritime Commission NOTICES Agreements Filed, 4299 2016-01488 Federal Railroad Federal Railroad Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 4360-4361 2016-01475 Federal Retirement Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board NOTICES Meetings; Sunshine Act, 4299 2016-01621 Federal Trade Federal Trade Commission NOTICES Revised Jurisdictional Thresholds for Section 7a of the Clayton Act, 4299-4300 2016-01451 Revised Jurisdictional Thresholds for Section 8 of the Clayton Act, 4300 2016-01452 Fiscal Fiscal Service NOTICES Surety Companies Acceptable on Federal Bonds: Fair American Insurance and Reinsurance Co., 4365 2016-01549 Lexington National Insurance Corp.; Change in State of Incorporation, 4365 2016-01551 Fish Fish and Wildlife Service NOTICES Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants: Draft Recovery Plan for the Laguna Mountains Skipper, 4333-4334 2016-01131 Food and Drug Food and Drug Administration NOTICES Determinations That Products Were Not Withdrawn from Sale for Reasons of Safety or Effectiveness: IZBA (Travoprost Ophthalmic Solution), 0.003 Percent, 4310-4311 2016-01473 Guidance: Design Considerations and Premarket Submission Recommendations for Interoperable Medical Devices, 4303-4305 2016-01471 Meetings: Food and Drug Administration/Xavier University PharmaLink Conference; Increasing Product Confidence, 4311-4312 2016-01486 International Drug Scheduling; Convention on Psychotropic Substances, 4305-4310 2016-01474 Requests for Nominations: National Mammography Quality Assurance Advisory Committee, 4311 2016-01487 Food and Nutrition Food and Nutrition Service RULES SNAP Requirement for National Directory of New Hires Employment Verification and Annual Program Activity Reporting, 4159-4163 2016-01402 Foreign Assets Foreign Assets Control Office NOTICES Blocking or Unblocking of Persons and Properties, 4365-4366 2016-01352 Foreign Trade Foreign-Trade Zones Board NOTICES Subzone Applications: Cabela's Inc., Foreign-Trade Zone 30, Salt Lake City, UT, 4250 2016-01575 CNH Industrial America, LLC, Benson, MN, 4250 2016-01574 FTZ Networks, Inc., Foreign-Trade Zone 287, Olive Branch, MS, 4249-4250 2016-01562 Forest Forest Service NOTICES Meetings: Davy Crockett Resource Advisory Committee, 4246-4247 2016-01436 Eleven Point Resource Advisory Committee, 4246 2016-01543 Geological Geological Survey NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Alaska Beak Deformity Observations, 4334 2016-01430 Health and Human Health and Human Services Department See

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

See

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

See

Food and Drug Administration

See

Health Resources and Services Administration

See

Indian Health Service

See

National Institutes of Health

See

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

RULES Medical Examination of Aliens: Medical Screening Process, 4191-4206 2016-01418
Health Resources Health Resources and Services Administration NOTICES Meetings: Advisory Committee on Heritable Disorders in Newborns and Children, 4312-4313 2016-01432 Homeland Homeland Security Department See

Coast Guard

See

Federal Emergency Management Agency

See

U.S. Customs and Border Protection

See

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

NOTICES Meetings: DHS Data Privacy and Integrity Advisory Committee, 4331-4332 2016-01469
Indian Health Indian Health Service PROPOSED RULES Catastrophic Health Emergency Fund, 4239-4244 2016-01138 Industry Industry and Security Bureau NOTICES Denials of Export Privileges: Ribway Airlines Co. Ltd., et al., 4250-4251 2016-01438 Interior Interior Department See

Fish and Wildlife Service

See

Geological Survey

Internal Revenue Internal Revenue Service PROPOSED RULES Special Enrollment Examination User Fee for Enrolled Agents, 4221-4223 2016-01629 International Trade Adm International Trade Administration NOTICES Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Seamless Refined Copper Pipe and Tube from the People's Republic of China and Mexico, 4252-4253 2016-01498 Tapered Roller Bearings and Parts Thereof, Finished and Unfinished, from the People's Republic of China, 4253-4254, 4256-4258 2016-01509 2016-01573 Tapered Roller Bearings and Parts Thereof, Finished and Unfinished, from the People's Republic of China; Correction, 4251-4252 2016-01499 Export Trade Certificates of Review: Association for the Administration of Rice Quotas, Inc., 4254-4255 2016-01570 Sales at Less Than Fair Value: Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products from Taiwan; Postponement of Final Determination, 4255-4256 2016-01566 International Trade Com International Trade Commission NOTICES Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Certain Amorphous Silica Fabric from China, 4335 2016-01423 Justice Department Justice Department NOTICES United States Assumption of Concurrent Federal Criminal Jurisdiction: Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe, 4335-4336 2016-01524 Labor Department Labor Department See

Mine Safety and Health Administration

PROPOSED RULES Implementation of the Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity Provisions of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, 4494-4572 2016-01213 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Benefit Accuracy Measurement Program; Correction, 4336 2016-01553 Employee Retirement Income Security Act Summary Annual Report Requirement; Correction, 4336-4337 2016-01554 Required Elements for Submission of the Unified or Combined State Plan and Plan Modifications under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act; Correction, 4336 2016-01552
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81 16 Tuesday, January 26, 2016 Rules and Regulations DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Food and Nutrition Service 7 CFR Part 272 [FNS-2015-0029] RIN 0584-AE36 SNAP Requirement for National Directory of New Hires Employment Verification and Annual Program Activity Reporting AGENCY:

Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), USDA.

ACTION:

Interim final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Food and Nutrition Service is codifying the requirement for State agencies to verify applicant employment data through the National Directory of New Hires (NDNH) for the determination of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) eligibility and correct amount of benefits, pursuant to section 4013 of the Agricultural Act of 2014. This interim final rule requires that State agencies access employment data through the NDNH at the time of SNAP certification, including recertification, and aims to improve Program integrity by reducing the risk of improper payments due to unreported or misreported income. This rule further amends regulations to change the reporting frequency requirement for the “Program and Budget Summary Statement Part B—Program Activity Statement” from an annual submission based on the State fiscal year to a quarterly submission based on the Federal fiscal year.

DATES:

To be considered, written comments on this interim final rule must be received on or before March 28, 2016. This rule will become effective March 28, 2016.

Implementation Date: State agencies have already been instructed through FNS directive to implement this provision as required by the Agricultural Act of 2014.

ADDRESSES:

Comments may be submitted in writing by one of the following methods:

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

Mail: Send written comments to Jane Duffield, State Administration Branch, Program Accountability and Administration Division, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, Food and Nutrition Service, USDA, 3101 Park Center Drive, Room 818, Alexandria, VA 22302.

• All written comments submitted in response to this interim final rule will be included in the record and will be made available to the public. Please be advised that the substance of the comments and the identity of the individuals or entities submitting the comments will be subject to public disclosure. FNS will make the written comments publicly available on the Internet via http://www.regulations.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Jane Duffield, Food and Nutrition Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, 3101 Park Center Drive, Room 818, Alexandria, VA 22302, by phone at (703) 305-2425 or via email at [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background

With this interim final rule, the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) amends the SNAP regulations at 7 CFR part 272 to require State agencies to access employment data through the National Directory of New Hires (NDNH) at the time of certification, including recertification, to determine the eligibility status and correct benefit amount for SNAP applicants and participants. This requirement codifies section 4013 of the Agricultural Act of 2014 (Pub. L. 113-79). The legislation was effective on February 7, 2014, and FNS implemented the mandated requirements, including that associated with the NDNH requirement, by directive to all SNAP State agencies on March 21, 2014. This interim rule also amends regulations at 7 CFR 272.2 to change the requirement for State agency submission of the “Program and Budget Summary Statement Part B—Program Activity Statement” (FNS-366B, OMB #0584-0594, expiration date 6/30/2017) from an annual submission based on the State fiscal year to a quarterly submission based on the Federal fiscal year.

Implement National Directory of New Hires Employment Verification Requirement

Current regulations at § 273.2(f)(1)(i) require State agencies to verify gross non-exempt income for all households prior to certification or, in instances where the State's attempts to verify the income with the employer have been unsuccessful, use the best available information to determine benefits. Additionally, regulations at § 273.12(a) and § 273.21 establish the SNAP household's responsibility to report applicable changes in income while participating in the Program. Thus, the accuracy of Program benefits issued to a household relies on the accuracy of reported and verified information.

The NDNH is a repository of employment, unemployment insurance, and quarterly wage data maintained by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE). The data residing in the NDNH includes W-4 (new hire) records from the State Directory of New Hires, quarterly wage and unemployment insurance data from the State workforce agencies, and new hire and quarterly wage data from Federal agencies. The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA) mandated the establishment of the NDNH in 1996. A major component of the Federal Parent Locator Service (FPLS), the NDNH was originally established for State Child Support Enforcement (CSE) Agencies to locate non-custodial parents in order to establish and enforce child support orders. As of February 2015, there were 64,571 employers and 33,610 subsidiaries listed in the NDNH. The number of employers and their subsidiaries listed in the NDNH generally increase each year. In 2014, over 4,320 new employers were added to the database.

The NDNH may only be accessed by authorized agencies with legislative authority. On July 27, 2006, Public Law 109-250 amended section 453(j) of Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 653(j)) by the adding a new paragraph (10), which authorized State agencies administering SNAP under the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 [7 U.S.C. 2011 et seq.] to access NDNH data for carrying out Program responsibilities. Prior to the amendment, State SNAP agencies could only access employment data made available through their own State Directory of New Hires for the determination of SNAP eligibility. Public Law 109-250 gave State SNAP agencies the option to access NDNH, thus providing an opportunity to receive employment data from other States, multi-State employers, and Federal agencies. Despite this change in legislation, few State agencies exercised the option to use it. Most State agencies instead opted to access employment data via their respective State Directory of New Hires, State Workforce Agency, and other data sources. By now requiring State agencies to access NDNH data for SNAP, FNS believes States will benefit from a reduction in improper payments due to unreported income.

This rule codifies in § 272.16 the requirement that each State agency must establish a system to compare identifiable information about each adult household member against data from the NDNH. Section 4013 of the Agricultural Act of 2014 mandates that States use NDNH to verify applicant and participant employment data and enter into a computer matching agreement with HHS pursuant to the authority in 42 U.S.C. 653(j)(10). State agencies must enter into a computer matching agreement with HHS in order to access the NDNH. States must continue to adhere to requirements § 272.12 addressing the use of information obtained from computer matching programs. The State agency may only use the required data matching to verify that the employment status of adult household members is accurately reported on the SNAP application. Because the NDNH does not include employment data on individuals under the age of 18, this verification requirement is limited to adult household members. The law further mandates the State agency to conduct matches against NDNH new hire data at the time of certification. FNS believes that conducting the match at both initial application and recertification will meet the intent of section 4013, and is therefore codifying the requirement for both certification and recertification.

The NDNH maintains three data sets. While this rule addresses the requirement for State agency matching against the NDNH new hire data set, States have the option to match against the quarterly wage and unemployment insurance data sets at their own discretion. Because the timeliness of quarterly wage and quarterly unemployment insurance data may not provide a true benefit to the State agency in determining eligibility and benefit levels, this rule only requires that States match against NDNH new hire data at minimum.

Data matching has provided many positive results for the efficient and effective administration of the program. However, it has come to the attention of FNS that there has been some confusion regarding reporting systems and integrity provisions for SNAP, specifically with regard to simplified reporting. Therefore, FNS wishes to clarify that in addition to the requirements of these integrity provisions, State agencies are also expected to comply with the requirements of the reporting system applicable to SNAP households provided at 7 CFR 273.12. State options for action on reported changes during the certification period must be followed, even for required data matches.

Data received through NDNH is not considered verified upon receipt. Consistent with requirements set forth in the Privacy Act (5 U.S.C. 552a(p)) and in SNAP regulation at 7 CFR 272.12(c), the State agency may not take any adverse action to terminate, deny, suspend, or reduce benefits to an applicant or SNAP recipient based on information provided by the NDNH unless the match information has been independently verified and a Notice of Adverse Action or Notice of Denial has been sent to the household. The Privacy Act defines independent verification as the investigation and confirmation of specific information relating to an individual used as a basis for an adverse action against the individual. Should there be a delay in the State agency's ability to verify the NDNH new hire match results within the required application processing timeline, the State agency is expected to continue processing the application without the requested documentation verifying the information. If, after either certification or recertification is completed, the State agency receives verification of information obtained through the NDNH match indicating that the household is ineligible or was approved for the incorrect benefit amount, the State should deny, reduce or terminate benefits, as applicable, and establish a claim to collect any benefits that were overpaid, in accordance with regulations at § 273.18.

Change the Reporting Frequency of Program Activity Statement (FNS-366B)

With this rule, FNS is also modifying a reporting requirement of Stte agencies by increasing the frequency of submitting a Program Activity Statement from an annual submission based on the State fiscal year to a quarterly submission based on the Federal fiscal year. Section 16(a) of the Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 authorizes 50 percent Federal reimbursement for State agency costs to administer SNAP. SNAP regulations at 7 CFR 272.2(a) require that State agencies plan and budget Program operations and establish objectives for the next year. The basic components of the State Plan of Operation are the Federal/State Agreement, the Budget Projection Statement and the Program Activity Statement (7 CFR 272.2(a)(2)). Under current regulations at 7 CFR 272.2(c), the State agency is required to submit to FNS for approval a Budget Projection Statement (FNS-366A) which projects total Federal administrative costs for the upcoming fiscal year and a Program Activity Statement (FNS-366B) which provides Program activity data for the preceding fiscal year. Current regulations at 7 CFR 272.2(e)(2)(ii) require State agencies to submit the Program Activity Statement to FNS no later than 45 days after the end of the State agency's fiscal year, which is typically August 15 for most States. The Program Activity Statement was created to substantiate the costs the State agency expects to incur during the next fiscal year. It currently provides data on the number of SNAP applications the State agency processed, the number of fair hearings the State agency conducted, and the fraud control activities in which the State agency was engaged in the preceding year. FNS uses the data to monitor State agency activity levels and performance.

While originally intended only to support the States' annual SNAP budget request by providing a summary of State SNAP activities in the previous State fiscal year, the data reported on the Program Activity Statement has also become a vital tool for monitoring State operations related to application processing, fair hearings, and fraud prevention activities. The data reported on the Program Activity Statement enables FNS to identify areas that may need improvement and to provide more effective technical assistance to State agencies. The Agency believes an increase in reporting frequency will allow for greater and more timely access to Program data. It will help States, FNS, and other stakeholders identify trends, inconsistencies and inefficiencies earlier in each fiscal year. A 2014 U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) performance audit of FNS (GAO-14-641, Enhanced Detection Tools and Reporting Could Improve Efforts to Combat Recipient Fraud) concluded that State-reported data on anti-fraud activities are not reliable for ensuring Program integrity and assessing States' performance. Additionally, the study warned that data inconsistencies could limit FNS' ability to identify more effective and efficient practices for State anti-fraud efforts. With more current data, States and other interested parties will be able to identify gaps and areas in need of greater attention, and allow States to respond more quickly to those gaps. This increased responsiveness, along with a concurrent FNS effort to update and improve the reliability of the data collected in the Program Activity Statement, will help to address directly the concerns raised by GAO. With this regulation, FNS is also aligning the new quarterly requirement to the Federal fiscal year. As most SNAP data is reported monthly, quarterly or annually based on the Federal fiscal year, this change will improve FNS' ability to conduct data analysis by using data collected over consistent periods of time.

II. Procedural Matters Executive Order 12866 and 13563

Executive Orders 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). Executive Order 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, of reducing costs, of harmonizing rules, and of promoting flexibility. This interim final rule has been determined to be not significant and was not reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) in conformance with Executive Order 12866.

Regulatory Impact Analysis

This interim final rule has been designated as not significant by the Office of Management and Budget; therefore, no Regulatory Impact Analysis is required.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

The Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601-612) requires Agencies to analyze the impact of rulemaking on small entities and consider alternatives that would minimize any significant impacts on a substantial number of small entities. Pursuant to that review, it has been certified that this interim final rule would not have a significant impact on a substantial number of small entities. While there may be some impact on the State and local agencies that administer the Program in implementing this provision, the impact is not expected to be significant. Applicants and recipients may also be impacted to the extent that matching client information with records in the National Directory of New Hires may identify a client as ineligible for the Program, thus preventing them from Program participation.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (UMRA), Public Law 104-4, establishes requirements for Federal agencies to assess the effects of their regulatory actions on State, local and Tribal governments and the private sector. Under section 202 of the UMRA, the Department generally must prepare a written statement, including a cost benefit analysis, for proposed and final rules with Federal mandates that may result in expenditures by State, local or Tribal governments, in the aggregate, or the private sector, of $100 million or more in any one year. When such a statement is needed for a rule, section 205 of the UMRA generally requires the Department to identify and consider a reasonable number of regulatory alternatives and adopt the most cost effective or least burdensome alternative that achieves the objectives of the rule.

This interim final rule does not contain Federal mandates (under the regulatory provisions of Title II of the UMRA) for State, local and Tribal governments or the private sector of $100 million or more in any one year. Thus, the rule is not subject to the requirements of sections 202 and 205 of the UMRA.

Executive Order 12372

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program is listed in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance under No. 10.551. For the reasons set forth in the Final Rule codified in 7 CFR part 3015, subpart V and related Notice (48 FR 29115, June 24, 1983), this Program is excluded from the scope of Executive Order 12372, which requires intergovernmental consultation with State and local officials.

Federalism Summary Impact Statement

Executive Order 13132 requires Federal agencies to consider the impact of their regulatory actions on State and local governments. Where such actions have federalism implications, agencies are directed to provide a statement for inclusion in the preamble to the regulations describing the agency's considerations in terms of the three categories called for under section (6)(b)(2)(B) of Executive Order 13132. The Department has considered the impact of this interim final rule on State and local governments and has determined that this rule does not have federalism implications. Therefore, under section 6(b) of the Executive Order, a federalism summary is not required.

Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform

This interim final rule has been reviewed under Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform. This rule is intended to have preemptive effect with respect to any State or local laws, regulations or policies which conflict with its provisions or which would otherwise impede its full and timely implementation. This rule is not intended to have retroactive effect unless so specified in the Effective Dates section of the final rule. Prior to any judicial challenge to the provisions of the final rule, all applicable administrative procedures must be exhausted.

Civil Rights Impact Analysis

FNS has reviewed this interim final rule in accordance with USDA Regulation 4300-4, “Civil Rights Impact Analysis,” to identify any major civil rights impacts the rule might have on Program participants on the basis of age, race, color, national origin, sex or disability. After a careful review of the rule's intent and provisions, FNS has determined that this rule is not expected to affect the participation of protected individuals in SNAP.

Executive Order 13175

This rule has been reviewed in accordance with the requirements of Executive Order 13175, “Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments.” Executive Order 13175 requires Federal agencies to consult and coordinate with tribes on a government-to-government basis on policies that have tribal implications, including regulations, legislative comments or proposed legislation, and other policy statements or actions that have substantial direct effects on one or more Indian tribes, on the relationship between the Federal Government and Indian tribes or on the distribution of power and responsibilities between the Federal Government and Indian tribes.

FNS has assessed the impact of this rule on Indian tribes and determined that this rule does not, to our knowledge, have tribal implications that require tribal consultation under E.O. 13175. On February 18, 2015, the agency held a webinar for tribal participation and comments. If a Tribe requests consultation, FNS will work with the Office of Tribal Relations to ensure meaningful consultation is provided where changes, additions and modifications identified herein are not expressly mandated by Congress.

Paperwork Reduction Act

The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chap. 35; 5 CFR part 1320) requires the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approve all collections of information by a Federal agency before they can be implemented. Respondents are not required to respond to any collection of information unless it displays a current valid OMB control number.

In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this interim final rule contains information collections that are subject to review and approval by the Office of Management and Budget; therefore, FNS is submitting an information collection under 0584-NEW, which contains the burden information in the rule for OMB's review and approval. These changes are contingent upon OMB approval under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. When the information collection requirements have been approved, the Department will publish a separate action in the Federal Register announcing OMB's approval. Once approved the new provisions in this rule and the burden requirement associated with the National Directory of New Hires will be merged into the existing information collection for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Forms: Applications, Periodic Reporting, Notices, OMB Control Number #0584-0064, expiration date 4/30/2016, which is currently under revision. New provisions and burden requirements in this rule associated with the Program Activity Statement (FNS-366B) will be merged into the existing information collection for the Food and Nutrition Service Food Programs Reporting System (FPRS), OMB Control Number #0584-0594, expiration date 6/30/2017, which is currently under revision.

Comments on this interim final rule must be received by March 28, 2016.

Send comments to Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, OMB, Attention: Desk Officer for FNS, Washington, DC 20403. Please also send a copy of your comments to Jane Duffield, Food and Nutrition Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, 3101 Park Center Drive, Alexandria, VA 22302. For further information, or for copies of the information collection, please contact Jane Duffield at the above address.

Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

All responses to this notice will be summarized and included in the request for OMB approval. All comments will also become a matter of public record.

Title: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program: Requirement for National Directory of New Hires Employment Verification and Annual Program Activity Reporting.

OMB Number: 0584—NEW.

Expiration Date: N/A.

Type of Request: New Collection.

Abstract: This rule codifies section 4013 of the Agricultural Act of 2014, requiring State agencies to access employment data through the National Directory of New Hires (NDNH) at the time of certification, including recertification, to determine eligibility status and correct benefit amount for SNAP applicants. This rule also amends regulations at 7 CFR 272.2 to increase the frequency of the requirement for State agency submission of the Program Activity Statement from an annual requirement based on the State fiscal year to a quarterly requirement, unless otherwise directed by FNS, based on the Federal fiscal year.

272.2—Program Activity Statement (FNS-366B)

State agencies are required to submit (quarterly) to FNS a Program Activity Statement (FNS-366B) providing a summary of Program activity for the State agency's operations during the previous reporting period. The activity report provides data on the number of applications processed, number of fair hearings and fraud control activity. FNS uses the data to monitor State agency activity levels and performance.

272.16—National Directory of New Hires

Applicant and Recipient Screening: The State agency must compare identifiable information about each adult household member against information from the NDNH. States must make the comparison of matched data at the time of application and recertification and must independently verify any positive match results.

Verification of Match: The State agency must independently verify the information prior to taking any adverse action against an individual. Should the State agency receive employment information via the NDNH that was previously unreported by the household, the State agency may issue a Request for Contact to the household to verify the information or contact the employer directly, depending upon applicable reporting requirements as defined at 7 CFR 273.12.

Notice: The Notice of Adverse Action or Notice of Denial is issued by State agencies to participating households whose benefits will be reduced or terminated as the result of a change in household circumstances. Should the State agency independently verify unreported or underreported income discovered through NDNH, and that income results in a reduction of benefits or change in eligibility, the State agency must take action by issuing the household a Notice of Adverse Action or Notice of Denial and adjusting benefits accordingly.

Burden Estimates: Out of the 251,482.35 hours requested for this new information collection request and after OMB's approval, FNS will merge the total reporting burden estimates into 0584-0064 are 249,252.64 burden hours & 12,276,992 total annual responses; and, the total reporting burden into 0584-0594 is 2,229.71 burden hours and 159 total annual responses. After approval into these existing collection packages and there are no recordkeeping requirements with these new or changing provisions.

See the burden breakdown by affected public below. After OMB approval of this information collection request, the program plans to publish another notice in the Federal Register announcing OMB's approval.

Respondents: State and local agencies, households.

Estimated Number of Respondents: 891,125.

Estimated Number of Responses per Respondent: 13.78.

Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 252,432.64 hours. See the table below for estimated total annual burden for each type of respondent.

State Agencies CFR Action Number of respondents Frequency per
  • respondent
  • Total annual
  • responses
  • Burden hours per response Total
  • burden
  • hours
  • Previous submission total hours Difference due to
  • program
  • changes
  • Difference due to
  • adjustments
  • 272.2 Program Activity Statement (FNS 366B) 53 4 212 15 3,180 950.29 2,229.71 0.00 272.16 NDNH—Applicant/Recipient Screening 53 1 9,158,240 0.017 155,690.08 0.00 155,690.08 0.00 272.16 NDNH—Verification of Match 53 1 1,237,600 0.03 37,128 0.00 37,128.00 0.00 272.16 NDNH—Notice of Adverse Action or Notice of Denial 53 1 495,040 0.03 14,851.20 0.00 14,851.20 0.00 Total 53 10,891,092 0.019359792 210,849.28 950.29 209,898.99 0.00
    Households CFR Action Number of respondents Frequency per
  • respondent
  • Total annual
  • responses
  • Burden hours per response Total
  • burden
  • hours
  • Previous submission total hours Difference due to
  • program
  • changes
  • Difference due to
  • adjustments
  • 272.16 NDNH—Request for Contact 891,072 1 891,072 0.03 26,732.16 0.00 26,732.16 0.00 272.16 NDNH—Notice of Adverse Action or Notice of Denial 495,040 1 495,040 0.03 14,851.20 0.00 14,851.20 0.00 Total 891,072 1,386,112 0.03 41,583.36 0.00 41,583.36 0.00
    E-Government Act Compliance

    The Department is committed to complying with the E-Government Act of 2002 to promote the use of the Internet and other information technologies to provide increased opportunities for citizen access to Government information and services, and for other purposes.

    List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 272

    Civil rights, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, Grant programs—social programs, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    Accordingly, 7 CFR part 272 is amended as follows:

    PART 272—REQUIREMENTS FOR PARTICIPATING STATE AGENCIES 1. The authority citation for part 272 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    7 U.S.C. 2011-2036.

    2. In § 272.2, revise paragraphs (c)(1)(ii) and (e)(2)(ii) to read as follows:
    § 272.2 Plan of operation.

    (c) * * *

    (1) * * *

    (ii) The Program Activity Statement, to be submitted quarterly (unless otherwise directed by FNS), solicits a summary of Program activity for the State agency's operations during the preceding reporting period.

    (e) * * *

    (2) * * *

    (ii) The Program Activity Statement shall be submitted quarterly (unless otherwise directed by FNS) based on the Federal fiscal year.

    3. Add § 272.16 to read as follows:
    § 272.16 National Directory of New Hires.

    (a) General. Each State agency shall establish a system to verify applicant employment data for the determination of SNAP eligibility and correct benefit amount.

    (b) Data source. States shall use the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service (HHS) National Directory of New Hires (NDNH) and enter into a computer matching agreement with HHS pursuant to the authority in 42 U.S.C. 653(j)(10).

    (c) Use of match data. In accordance with the procedural requirements and privacy protections required for computer data matching at 5 U.S.C. 552a(p), States shall provide a system for:

    (1) Comparing identifiable information about each adult household member against data from the NDNH. States must, at minimum, match household members against new hire data available in the database. States shall make the comparison of matched data at the time of application and recertification.

    (2) The reporting of instances where there is a match;

    (3) The independent verification of match hits to determine their accuracy;

    (4) Notice to the household of match results;

    (5) An opportunity for the household to respond to the match prior to an adverse action to deny, reduce, or terminate benefits; and

    (6) The establishment and collection of claims as appropriate.

    Dated: January 14, 2016. Audrey Rowe, Administrator, Food and Nutrition Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01402 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-30-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA-2015-1281; Directorate Identifier 2014-NM-241-AD; Amendment 39-18346; AD 2015-25-08] RIN 2120-AA64 Airworthiness Directives; The Boeing Company Airplanes AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Final rule; correction.

    SUMMARY:

    The FAA is correcting an airworthiness directive (AD) that published in the Federal Register. That AD applies to all The Boeing Company Model 777 airplanes. Paragraph (i)(4) of the regulatory text contains a reference to a nonexistent paragraph. This document corrects that error. In all other respects, the original document remains the same.

    DATES:

    This final rule is effective January 28, 2016.

    The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of January 28, 2016 (80 FR 80234, December 24, 2015).

    ADDRESSES:

    For service information identified in this final rule, contact Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Attention: Data & Services Management, P.O. Box 3707, MC 2H-65, Seattle, WA 98124-2207; telephone 206-544-5000, extension 1; fax 206-766-5680; Internet https://www.myboeingfleet.com. You may view this referenced service information at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221. It is also available on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2015-1281.

    Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov; or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The address for the Docket Office (phone: 800-647-5527) is Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Eric Lin, Aerospace Engineer, Airframe Branch, ANM-120S, FAA, Seattle Aircraft Certification Office (ACO), 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057-3356; phone: 425-917-6412; fax: 425-917-6590; email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Airworthiness Directive 2015-25-08, Amendment 39-18346 (80 FR 80234, December 24, 2015), currently requires repetitive inspections for any crack in the aft webs of the radial lap splices of the aft pressure bulkhead, and, if necessary, corrective actions, for all The Boeing Company Model 777 airplanes.

    Need for the Correction

    As published, paragraph (i)(4) of the regulatory text contains a reference to a nonexistent paragraph. Paragraph (i)(4) of the AD incorrectly references paragraph “(l)(4)(ii)”; however, the correct reference is paragraph “(i)(4)(ii).”

    Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    We reviewed Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-53A0078, dated December 5, 2014. This service information describes procedures for inspections of the lap splices in the web of the aft pressure bulkhead for cracking, and corrective actions. This service information is reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by the means identified in the ADDRESSES section.

    Correction of Publication

    This document corrects an error and correctly adds the AD as an amendment to section 39.13 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (14 CFR 39.13). Although no other part of the preamble or regulatory information has been corrected, we are publishing the entire rule in the Federal Register.

    The effective date of this AD remains January 28, 2016.

    Since this action only corrects a paragraph reference, it has no adverse economic impact and imposes no additional burden on any person. Therefore, we have determined that notice and public procedures are unnecessary.

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

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

    Adoption of the Correction

    Accordingly, pursuant to the authority delegated to me by the Administrator, the Federal Aviation Administration amends part 39 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (14 CFR part 39) as follows:

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

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

    § 39.13 [Corrected]
    2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD): 2015-25-08 The Boeing Company: Amendment 39-18346; Docket No. FAA-2015-1281; Directorate Identifier 2014-NM-241-AD. (a) Effective Date

    This AD becomes effective on January 28, 2016.

    (b) Affected ADs

    None.

    (c) Applicability

    This AD applies to all The Boeing Company Model 777-200, -200LR, -300, -300ER, and 777F series airplanes, certificated in any category.

    (d) Subject

    Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 53, Fuselage.

    (e) Unsafe Condition

    This AD was prompted by an evaluation by the design approval holder indicating that the lap splices of the aft pressure bulkhead webs are subject to widespread fatigue damage on aging Model 777 airplanes that have accumulated at least 38,000 total flight cycles. We are issuing this AD to detect and correct fatigue cracking in the aft webs of the radial lap splices of the aft pressure bulkhead; such cracking could result in reduced structural integrity of the airplane, decompression of the cabin, and collapse of the floor structure.

    (f) Compliance

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

    (g) Inspection of Lap Splice in the Web of the Aft Pressure Bulkhead

    Except as required by paragraph (h) of this AD: At the times specified in paragraph 1.E., “Compliance,” of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-53A0078, dated December 5, 2014, do a medium frequency eddy current inspection for any cracking in the aft webs of the radial lap splices of the aft pressure bulkhead, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-53A0078, dated December 5, 2014. Repeat the inspection thereafter at intervals not to exceed 8,400 flight cycles from the previous inspection. If any crack is found during any inspection required by this AD, do the applicable corrective actions, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-53A0078, dated December 5, 2014. If a corrective action described in Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-53A0078, dated December 5, 2014, specifies to contact Boeing for appropriate action: Before further flight, repair using a method approved in accordance with the procedures specified in paragraph (i) of this AD.

    (h) Exception to Service Information Specifications

    Where Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-53A0078, dated December 5, 2014, specifies a compliance time “after the original issue date of this service bulletin,” this AD requires compliance within the specified compliance time after the effective date of this AD.

    (i) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    (1) The Manager, Seattle Aircraft Certification Office (ACO), FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. In accordance with 14 CFR 39.19, send your request to your principal inspector or local Flight Standards District Office, as appropriate. If sending information directly to the manager of the ACO, send it to the attention of the person identified in paragraph (j) of this AD. Information may be emailed to: [email protected]

    (2) Before using any approved AMOC, notify your appropriate principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight standards district office/certificate holding district office.

    (3) An AMOC that provides an acceptable level of safety may be used for any repair, modification, or alteration required by this AD if it is approved by the Boeing Commercial Airplanes Organization Designation Authorization (ODA) that has been authorized by the Manager, Seattle ACO, to make those findings. To be approved, the repair method, modification deviation, or alteration deviation must meet the certification basis of the airplane and the approval must specifically refer to this AD.

    (4) For service information that contains steps that are labeled as Required for Compliance (RC), the provisions of paragraphs (i)(4)(i) and (i)(4)(ii) of this AD apply.

    (i) The steps labeled as RC, including substeps under an RC step and any figures identified in an RC step, must be done to comply with the AD. An AMOC is required for any deviations to RC steps, including substeps and identified figures.

    (ii) Steps not labeled as RC may be deviated from using accepted methods in accordance with the operator's maintenance or inspection program without obtaining approval of an AMOC, provided the RC steps, including substeps and identified figures, can still be done as specified, and the airplane can be put back in an airworthy condition.

    (j) Related Information

    For more information about this AD, contact Eric Lin, Aerospace Engineer, Airframe Branch, ANM-120S, FAA, Seattle ACO, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057-3356; phone: 425-917-6412; fax: 425-917-6590; email: [email protected]

    (k) Material Incorporated by Reference

    (1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference (IBR) of the service information listed in this paragraph under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51.

    (2) You must use this service information as applicable to do the actions required by this AD, unless the AD specifies otherwise.

    (3) The following service information was approved for IBR on January 28, 2016 (80 FR 80234, December 24, 2015).

    (i) Boeing Alert Service Bulletin 777-53A0078, dated December 5, 2014.

    (ii) Reserved.

    (4) For service information identified in this AD, contact Boeing Commercial Airplanes, Attention: Data & Services Management, P. O. Box 3707, MC 2H-65, Seattle, WA 98124-2207; telephone 206-544-5000, extension 1; fax 206 766 5680; Internet https://www.myboeingfleet.com.

    (5) You may view this service information at FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221.

    (6) You may view this service information that is incorporated by reference at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to: http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html.

    Issued in Renton, Washington, on January 19, 2016. Michael Kaszycki, Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01441 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA-2015-3585; Directorate Identifier 2015-NE-22-AD; Amendment 39-18384; AD 2015-28-01] RIN 2120-AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Engine Alliance Turbofan Engines AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Engine Alliance (EA) GP7270 turbofan engines. This AD was prompted by the manufacturer informing us that the inspection criteria and repair procedures in the maintenance manual for aft bolt holes of the high-pressure compressor (HPC) cone shaft on the affected engines is incorrect. This AD requires inspection of the HPC cone shaft and repair of affected parts, if needed. We are issuing this AD to prevent failure of the HPC cone shaft, which could lead to uncontained engine failure and damage to the airplane.

    DATES:

    This AD is effective March 1, 2016.

    The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of March 1, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    For service information identified in this AD, contact Engine Alliance, 400 Main St., East Hartford, CT 06108, M/S 169-10, phone: 800-565-0140; email: [email protected]; Internet: sp.engineallianceportal.com. You may view this service information at the FAA, Engine & Propeller Directorate, 1200 District Avenue, Burlington, MA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 781-238-7125.

    Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2015-3585; or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The address for the Docket Office (phone: 800-647-5527) is Document Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Kyle Gustafson, Aerospace Engineer, Engine & Propeller Directorate, FAA, 1200 District Avenue, Burlington, MA 01803; phone: 781-238-7183; fax: 781-238-7199; email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Discussion

    We issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14 CFR part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to certain EA GP7270 turbofan engines. The NPRM published in the Federal Register on October 1, 2015 (80 FR 59081). The NPRM was prompted by the manufacturer informing us that the inspection criteria and repair procedures in the maintenance manual for aft bolt holes of the HPC cone shaft, also referred to as the “HPC forward stubshaft,” for the affected engines is incorrect. The NPRM proposed to require inspection of the HPC cone shaft and repair of affected parts, if needed. We are issuing this AD to prevent failure of the HPC cone shaft, which could lead to uncontained engine failure and damage to the airplane.

    Comments

    We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing this AD. The following presents the comments received on the NPRM (80 FR 59081, October 1, 2015) and the FAA's response to each comment.

    Request To Add Engine Models

    EA requested that we expand the applicability to include the GP7272 and GP7277 engine models.

    We disagree. There are no GP7272 or GP7277 engines in service nor have any been delivered. New engines would be delivered with corrected service information and would not be impacted by this AD. We did not change this AD.

    Request To Change the Unsafe Condition Statement

    EA requested that the unsafe condition statement be changed from “We are issuing this AD to prevent failure of the HPC cone shaft, which could lead to uncontained engine failure and damage to the airplane.” to “We are issuing this AD to prevent a hazardous engine condition.” The reason for this request is that no HPC cone shaft failures have occurred in the field.

    We disagree. The unsafe condition statement describes the condition we are trying to prevent and is the justification for this AD. It does not describe what has occurred in the past. We did not change this AD.

    Request To Change Various Paragraphs

    EA requested that we revise the part nomenclature in the Applicability, Compliance, and Installation Prohibition paragraphs and in the unsafe condition statement to include both “cone shaft” and “forward stubshaft.” The part is referenced as a “cone shaft” in this AD and engine and component manuals; however, it is referred to as a “forward stubshaft” in the service bulletins (SBs).

    We disagree. The part nomenclature listed in the airworthiness limitations section and engine maintenance manual is “cone shaft.” The Discussion section of this AD explains that the terms “cone shaft” and “forward stubshaft” are synonymous. We consider including both terms throughout this AD unnecessary. We did not change this AD.

    Request To Revise the Compliance

    EA requested that the Compliance paragraph be revised to include the word “pits” when describing the inspection criteria.

    We agree. We revised paragraph (e)(1) and (f)(1) of this AD from “. . . nicks, dents, and scratches . . .” to “. . . nicks, dents, pits, and scratches. . . .”

    Request To Change the Compliance

    EA requested that we replace “Do not reinstall the HPC cone shaft if the aft bolt hole has a nick, dent, or scratch that is greater than 0.002 inch in depth” in paragraph (e)(1) of this AD with “Comply with the Accomplishment Instructions in EA SB No. EAGP7-72-330 if the aft bolt hole has a nick, dent, pit, or scratch that is greater than the serviceable limit.”

    We disagree. The current engine manual has an approved repair procedure for damage that is more severe than the installation requirements of this AD. It is not necessary to restate what is already allowed by the engine manual. We did not change this AD.

    Request To Change Service Information

    EA requested that the phrase “or later” be used when referring to SBs.

    We disagree. We are only authorized to mandate use of SBs that we have reviewed and which are published. Since future revisions of SBs are not yet published, we are not authorized to mandate their use. We did not change this AD.

    Request To Change the Installation Prohibition

    EA requested that we change the Installation Prohibition paragraph to read: “After the effective date of this AD, do not install an HPC cone shaft onto an engine: (1) that has accumulated more than 9,000 cycles since new that has not complied with this AD on an applicable part, and (2) has a nick, dent, or scratch in an HPC cone shaft aft bolt hole that is greater than the serviceable limit.”

    We disagree. The intent of the Installation Prohibition paragraph is to mandate the new serviceable limit of 0.002 inch for damage to the inner diameter of the bolt holes for the entire GP7270 fleet. Any parts with damage beyond this limit may be repaired using the approved procedures listed in the engine manual, provided that you include shot peening as required by paragraph (f)(2) of this AD. We did not change this AD.

    Conclusion

    We reviewed the relevant data, considered the comments received, and determined that air safety and the public interest require adopting this AD with the changes described previously.

    We also determined that these changes will not increase the economic burden on any operator or increase the scope of this AD.

    Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    EA has issued SB No. EAGP7-72-329, dated July 21, 2015 and SB No. EAGP7-72-330, dated July 21, 2015. The service information describes procedures for shotpeening the HPC forward stubshaft and inspecting the HPC forward stubshaft bolt-hole inner diameter respectively. This service information is reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by the means identified in the ADDRESSES section of this final rule.

    Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this AD affects zero engines installed on airplanes of U.S. registry. The average labor rate is $85 per hour. Based on these figures, we estimate the cost of this AD on U.S. operators to be $0.

    Authority for This Rulemaking

    Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety. Subtitle I, section 106, describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII: Aviation Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the Agency's authority.

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

    Regulatory Findings

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

    For the reasons discussed above, I certify that this AD:

    (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),

    (3) Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska to the extent that it justifies making a regulatory distinction, and

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

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

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

    Adoption of the Amendment

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

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

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

    § 39.13 [Amended]
    2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD): 2015-28-01 Engine Alliance: Amendment 39-18384; Docket No. FAA-2015-3585; Directorate Identifier 2015-NE-22-AD. (a) Effective Date

    This AD is effective March 1, 2016.

    (b) Affected ADs

    None.

    (c) Applicability

    This AD applies to Engine Alliance (EA) GP7270 turbofan engines with a high-pressure compressor (HPC) cone shaft, part number 382-100-907-0, installed.

    (d) Unsafe Condition

    This AD was prompted by the manufacturer informing us that the inspection and repair criteria in the maintenance manual for aft bolt holes of the HPC cone shaft on the affected engines is incorrect. We are issuing this AD to prevent failure of the HPC cone shaft, which could lead to uncontained engine failure and damage to the airplane.

    (e) Compliance

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

    (1) For HPC cone shafts with serial numbers listed in EA Service Bulletin (SB) No. EAGP7-72-330, dated July 21, 2015, inspect the inner diameter of the HPC cone shaft aft bolt holes for nicks, dents, pits, and scratches before accumulating 9,000 cycles since new (CSN). Do not reinstall the HPC cone shaft if the aft bolt hole has any nicks, dents, pits, or scratches that are greater than 0.002 inch in depth.

    (2) For HPC cone shafts with serial numbers listed in EA SB No. EAGP7-72-329, dated July 21, 2015, shot peen the HPC cone shaft aft bolt holes before accumulating 9,000 CSN. Use paragraph 1 of the Accomplishment Instructions in EA SB No. EAGP7-72-329 to do the shot peening.

    (f) Installation Prohibition

    After the effective date of this AD, do not install an HPC cone shaft on any engine with the following:

    (1) any nicks, dents, pits, or scratches in an HPC cone shaft aft bolt hole that is greater than 0.002 inch in depth; or

    (2) any repair of an HPC cone shaft aft bolt hole that did not include shot peening.

    (g) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    The Manager, Engine Certification Office, may approve AMOCs for this AD. Use the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19 to make your request. You may email your request to: [email protected]

    (h) Related Information

    For more information about this AD, contact Kyle Gustafson, Aerospace Engineer, Engine & Propeller Directorate, FAA, 1200 District Avenue, Burlington, MA 01803; phone: 781-238-7183; fax: 781-238-7199; email: [email protected]

    (i) Material Incorporated by Reference

    (1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference (IBR) of the service information listed in this paragraph under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51.

    (2) You must use this service information as applicable to do the actions required by this AD, unless the AD specifies otherwise.

    (i) Engine Alliance (EA) Service Bulletin (SB) No. EAGP7-72-329, dated July 21, 2015.

    (ii) EA SB No. EAGP7-72-330, dated July 21, 2015.

    (3) For EA service information identified in this AD, contact Engine Alliance, 400 Main St., East Hartford, CT 06108, M/S 169-10; phone: 800-565-0140; email: [email protected]; Internet: sp.engineallianceportal.com.

    (4) You may view this service information at FAA, Engine & Propeller Directorate, 1200 District Avenue, Burlington, MA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 781-238-7125.

    (5) You may view this service information at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to: http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html.

    Issued in Burlington, Massachusetts, on January 13, 2016. Gaetano Sciortino, Acting Directorate Manager, Engine & Propeller Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01268 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA-2015-1429; Directorate Identifier 2014-NM-246-AD; Amendment 39-18382; AD 2016-02-03] RIN 2120-AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Airplanes AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Transportation (DOT).

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Airbus Model A319-113, A319-114, A320-211, and A320-212 airplanes. This AD was prompted by a report that the aft mount pylon bolts of the CFM56-5 engines may have been installed using the wrong torque values. This AD requires identification of engines that were installed using the wrong torque values and re-torque of the four aft mount pylon bolts of those engines. We are issuing this AD to detect and correct improper torque of the aft mount pylon bolts, which, if combined with any maintenance damage, could lead to aft engine mount failure, possibly resulting in engine detachment and consequent reduced control of the airplane.

    DATES:

    This AD becomes effective March 1, 2016.

    The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of a certain publication listed in this AD as of March 1, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=FAA-2015-1429; or in person at the Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC.

    For service information identified in this final rule, contact Airbus, Airworthiness Office—EIAS, 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France; telephone: +33 5 61 93 36 96; fax: +33 5 61 93 44 51; email: [email protected]; Internet http://www.airbus.com. You may view this referenced service information at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221. It is also available on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2015-1429.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Sanjay Ralhan, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057-3356; telephone: 425-227-1405; fax: 425-227-1149.

    Discussion

    We issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14 CFR part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to certain Airbus Model A319-113, A319-114, A320-211, and A320-212 airplanes. The NPRM published in the Federal Register on June 15, 2015 (80 FR 34101). The NPRM was prompted by a report that the aft mount pylon bolts of the CFM56-5 engines may have been installed using the wrong torque values. The NPRM proposed to require identification of engines that were installed using the wrong torque values and re-torque of the four aft mount pylon bolts of those engines. We are issuing this AD to detect and correct improper torque of the aft mount pylon bolts, which, if combined with any maintenance damage, could lead to aft engine mount failure, possibly resulting in engine detachment and consequent reduced control of the airplane.

    The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Union, has issued EASA AD 2014-0258, dated November 28, 2014 (referred to after this as the Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information, or “the MCAI”), to correct an unsafe condition for certain Airbus Model A319-113, A319-114, A320-211, and A320-212 airplanes. The MCAI states:

    In the Aircraft Maintenance Manual (AMM) revision dated May 2013, a wrong torque value was added in AMM task 71-00-00-400-040-A01 “Installation of the power plant with Engine Positioner TWW75E”. Temporary Revisions (TR) dated March 2014 were published by Airbus to correct the information and with AMM revision dated May 2014, Task 71-00-00-400-040-A01 was corrected to include the correct values. Notwithstanding those actions, static and fatigue analyses have concluded that this undertorque scenario negatively impacts the assembly performance, reducing the aft mount capability.

    This condition, if not corrected and if combined with any maintenance damage, could lead to aft engine mount failure, possibly resulting in engine detachment and consequent reduced control of the aeroplane.

    For the reasons described above, this [EASA] AD requires identification of CFM56-5 engines (those listed in TCDS EASA.E.067 [http://easa.europa.eu/document-library/typecertificates/easae067]) that were installed by using the wrong torque data of AMM instructions mentioned above and re-torque of the four aft mount pylon bolts of those engines.

    You may examine the MCAI in the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=FAA-2015-1429-0002.

    Comments

    We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing this AD. The following presents the comment received on the NPRM (80 FR 34101, June 15, 2015) and the FAA's response to each comment.

    Request to Revise Paragraph (h) of the Proposed AD (80 FR 34101, June 15, 2015)

    Delta Air Lines, Inc. (DAL) requested that we revise paragraph (h) of the proposed AD (80 FR 34101, June 15, 2015), by revising the wording to refer to the Aircraft Maintenance Manual (AMM), dated May 2013 instead of Airbus Service Bulletin A320-71-1063, including Appendix 01, dated August 13, 2014. DAL pointed out that paragraph (h) of the proposed AD required engine installation in accordance with Airbus Service Bulletin A320-71-1063, including Appendix 01, dated August 13, 2014. DAL also mentioned that Airbus Service Bulletin A320-71-1063, including Appendix 01, dated August 13, 2014, only has requirements for inspection and re-torque of the aft engine mount pylon bolts.

    We agree to revise paragraph (h) of this AD because Airbus Service Bulletin A320-71-1063, including Appendix 01, dated August 13, 2014, does not contain installation instructions. We have revised paragraph (h) of this AD to specify that no person may install a CFM56-5 engine, on any airplane, unless accomplishing the actions specified in paragraph (g) of this AD.

    Conclusion

    We reviewed the relevant data, considered the comment received, and determined that air safety and the public interest require adopting this AD with the change described previously and minor editorial changes. We have determined that these minor changes:

    • Are consistent with the intent that was proposed in the NPRM (80 FR 34101, June 15, 2015) for correcting the unsafe condition; and

    • Do not add any additional burden upon the public than was already proposed in the NPRM (80 FR 34101, June 15, 2015).

    We also determined that these changes will not increase the economic burden on any operator or increase the scope of this AD.

    Related Service Information under 1 CFR part 51

    Airbus has issued Airbus Service Bulletin A320-71-1063, including Appendix 01, dated August 13, 2014. The service information describes procedures to detect and correct improper torque of the aft mount pylon bolts. This service information is reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by the means identified in the ADDRESSES section.

    Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this AD affects 126 airplanes of U.S. registry.

    We also estimate that it will take about 2 work-hours per product to comply with the basic requirements of this AD. The average labor rate is $85 per work-hour. Based on these figures, we estimate the cost of this AD on U.S. operators to be $21,420, or $170 per product.

    Authority for this Rulemaking

    Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety. Subtitle I, section 106, describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. “Subtitle VII: Aviation Programs,” describes in more detail the scope of the Agency's authority.

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

    Regulatory Findings

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

    For the reasons discussed above, I certify that this AD:

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

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

    3. Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska; and

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

    Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=FAA-2015-1429; or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for the Docket Operations office (telephone: 800-647-5527) is in the ADDRESSES section.

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

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

    Adoption of the Amendment

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

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

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

    § 39.13 [Amended]
    2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD):

    2016-02-03 Airbus: Amendment 39-18382. Docket No. FAA-2015-1429; Directorate Identifier 2014-NM-246-AD.

    (a) Effective Date

    This AD becomes effective March 1, 2016.

    (b) Affected ADs

    None.

    (c) Applicability

    This AD applies to the airplanes identified in paragraphs (c)(1) and (c)(2) of this AD, certificated in any category, all manufacturer serial numbers.

    (1) Airbus Model A319-113 and -114 airplanes.

    (2) Airbus Model A320-211 and -212 airplanes.

    (d) Subject

    Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 71, Powerplant.

    (e) Reason

    This AD was prompted by a report that the aft mount pylon bolts of the CFM56-5 engines may have been installed using the wrong torque values. We are issuing this AD to detect and correct improper torque of the aft mount pylon bolts, which, if combined with any maintenance damage, could lead to aft engine mount failure, possibly resulting in engine detachment and consequent reduced control of the airplane.

    (f) Compliance

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

    (g) Inspection for Incorrect Torque Values

    Within 6 months or 1,500 flight cycles, whichever occurs first after the effective date of this AD, inspect to determine the method used to install the engines, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Airbus Service Bulletin A320-71-1063, including Appendix 01, dated August 13, 2014. A review of airplane maintenance records is acceptable in lieu of this inspection if the method used to install the engines can be conclusively determined from that review. For any engine replaced as specified in the Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 Aircraft Maintenance Manual (AMM), Task 71-00-00-400-040-A01, “Installation of the Power Plant with Engine Positioner TWW 75E,” dated May 2013: Within 6 months or 1,500 flight cycles, whichever occurs first after the effective date of this AD, re-torque the 4 aft mount pylon bolts using a method approved by the Manager, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA; or the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA); or Airbus's EASA Design Organization Approval (DOA).

    Note 1 to paragraph (g) of this AD:

    Additional guidance for the re-torque can be found in Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321 AMM Task 71-00-00-400-040-A01, “Installation of the Power Plant with Engine Positioner TWW 75E,” dated May 2014.

    (h) Parts Installation Limitation

    As of the effective date of this AD, no person may install a CFM56-5 engine, on any airplane, unless the inspection, and, as applicable, the re-torque, is done as specified in paragraph (g) of this AD.

    (i) Other FAA AD Provisions

    The following provisions also apply to this AD:

    (1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. In accordance with 14 CFR 39.19, send your request to your principal inspector or local Flight Standards District Office, as appropriate. If sending information directly to the International Branch, send it to ATTN: Sanjay Ralhan, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057-3356; telephone: 425-227-1405; fax: 425-227-1149. Information may be emailed to: [email protected] Before using any approved AMOC, notify your appropriate principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight standards district office/certificate holding district office. The AMOC approval letter must specifically reference this AD.

    (2) Contacting the Manufacturer: For any requirement in this AD to obtain corrective actions from a manufacturer, the action must be accomplished using a method approved by the Manager, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA; or the EASA; or Airbus's EASA DOA. If approved by the DOA, the approval must include the DOA-authorized signature.

    (j) Related Information

    (1) Refer to Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information (MCAI) EASA AD 2014-0258, dated November 28, 2014, for related information. This MCAI may be found in the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=FAA-2015-1429-0002.

    (2) Service information identified in this AD that is not incorporated by reference is available at the addresses specified in paragraphs (k)(3) and (k)(4) of this AD.

    (k) Material Incorporated by Reference

    (1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference (IBR) of the service information listed in this paragraph under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51.

    (2) You must use this service information as applicable to do the actions required by this AD, unless this AD specifies otherwise.

    (i) Airbus Service Bulletin A320-71-1063, including Appendix 01, dated August 13, 2014.

    (ii) Reserved.

    (3) For service information identified in this AD, contact Airbus SAS, Airworthiness Office—EAW, 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France; telephone: +33 5 61 93 36 96; fax: +33 5 61 93 44 51; email: [email protected]; Internet http://www.airbus.com.

    (4) You may view this service information at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221.

    (5) You may view this service information that is incorporated by reference at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to: http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html.

    Issued in Renton, Washington, on January 11, 2016. Michael Kaszycki, Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01108 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA-2015-1991; Directorate Identifier 2014-NM-251-AD; Amendment 39-18381; AD 2016-02-02] RIN 2120-AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Airbus Airplanes AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Transportation (DOT).

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for all Airbus Model A318-111 and -112 airplanes; Model A319-111, -112, and -115 airplanes; Model A320-214 airplanes; and Model A321-111, -112, -211, -212, and -213 airplanes. This AD was prompted by reports of cracked cadmium-plated lock nuts that attach the hinge to the fan cowl door. This AD requires inspecting to determine the serial number of each engine fan cowl door, inspecting for cracking of the hinge lock nuts of any affected door, and replacing the lock nuts if necessary. We are issuing this AD to detect and correct cracking of the hinge lock nuts, which could result in separation of the hinge from the fan cowl door, in-flight loss of the door, and consequent damage to the airplane.

    DATES:

    This AD becomes effective March 1, 2016.

    The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of certain publications listed in this AD as of March 1, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=FAA-2015-1991; or in person at the Docket Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC.

    For service information identified in this final rule, contact the following:

    For Airbus service information contact Airbus, Airworthiness Office—EIAS, 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France; telephone: +33 5 61 93 36 96; fax: +33 5 61 93 44 51; email: [email protected]; Internet http://www.airbus.com.

    For Goodrich service information contact Goodrich Aerostructures, 850 Lagoon Drive, Chula Vista, California, 91910-2098; telephone: 619-691-2719; email: [email protected]; Internet: http://www.goodrich.com/TechPubs.

    You may view this referenced service information at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221. It is also available on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2015-1991.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Sanjay Ralhan, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057-3356; telephone 425-227-1405; fax 425-227-1149.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION Discussion

    We issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14 CFR part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to all Airbus Model A318-111 and -112 airplanes; Model A319-111, -112, and -115 airplanes; Model A320-214 airplanes; and Model A321-111, -112, -211, -212, and -213 airplanes. The NPRM published in the Federal Register on July 2, 2015 (80 FR 38036).

    The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the Technical Agent for the Member States of the European Union, has issued EASA Airworthiness Directive 2014-0276, dated December 19, 2014 (referred to after this as the Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information, or “the MCAI”), to correct an unsafe condition for all Airbus Model A318-111 and -112 airplanes; Model A319-111, -112, and -115 airplanes; Model A320-214 airplanes; and Model A321-111, 112, -211, -212, and -213 airplanes. The MCAI states:

    In-service findings have been reported of cracked cadmium plated lock nuts. This cracking occurs shortly after installation. Investigation results attribute the cause to an improper manufacturing procedure of the nuts. It was determined that the affected batch of lock nuts was used on the fan cowl to attach hinges to the cowl doors on CFM56-5B engines only.

    This condition, if not corrected, could lead to separation of the hinge from the fan cowl door, possibly resulting in in-flight loss of a fan cowl door, with consequent damage to the aeroplane and/or injury to persons on the ground.

    For the reasons describes above, this [EASA] AD required identification of the affected fan cowl doors, a one-time inspection of the fan cowl door hinge nuts and, depending on findings, replacement of the affected nuts.

    You may examine the MCAI in the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=FAA-2015-1991-0003.

    Comments

    We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing this AD. We received no comments on the NPRM (80 FR 38036, July 2, 2015) or on the determination of the cost to the public.

    Conclusion

    We reviewed the available data and determined that air safety and the public interest require adopting this AD as proposed, except for minor editorial changes. We have determined that these minor changes:

    • Are consistent with the intent that was proposed in the NPRM (80 FR 38036, July 2, 2015) for correcting the unsafe condition; and

    • Do not add any additional burden upon the public than was already proposed in the NPRM (80 FR 38036, July 2, 2015).

    Related Service Information under 1 CFR part 51

    Airbus has issued Service Bulletin A320-71-1062, dated July 28, 2014. Goodrich Aerostructures has issued Service Bulletin RA32071-151, dated June 11, 2014. The service information describes procedures for inspection and replacement of the hinge nuts of the fan cowl door. This service information is reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by the means identified in the ADDRESSES section.

    Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this AD affects 437 airplanes of U.S. registry.

    We also estimate that it takes about 2 work-hours per product to comply with the basic requirements of this AD. The average labor rate is $85 per work-hour. Required parts will cost about $0 per product. Based on these figures, we estimate the cost of this AD on U.S. operators to be $74,290, or $170 per product.

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

    Authority for This Rulemaking

    Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety. Subtitle I, section 106, describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. “Subtitle VII: Aviation Programs,” describes in more detail the scope of the Agency's authority.

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

    Regulatory Findings

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

    For the reasons discussed above, I certify that this AD:

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

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

    3. Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska; and

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

    Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=FAA-2015-1991; or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for the Docket Operations office (telephone 800-647-5527) is in the ADDRESSES section.

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

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

    Adoption of the Amendment

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

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

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

    § 39.13 [Amended]
    2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD): 2016-02-02 Airbus: Amendment 39-18381. Docket No. FAA-2015-1991; Directorate Identifier 2014-NM-251-AD. (a) Effective Date

    This AD becomes effective March 1, 2016.

    (b) Affected ADs

    None.

    (c) Applicability

    This AD applies to the airplanes, certificated in any category, identified in paragraphs (c)(1), (c)(2), (c)(3), and (c)(4) of this AD, all manufacturer serial numbers.

    (1) Airbus Model A318-111 and -112 airplanes.

    (2) Airbus Model A319-111, -112, and -115 airplanes.

    (3) Airbus Model A320-214 airplanes.

    (4) Airbus Model A321-111, -112, -211, -212, and -213 airplanes.

    (d) Subject

    Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 71, Powerplant.

    (e) Reason

    This AD was prompted by reports of cracked cadmium-plated lock nuts that attach the hinge to the fan cowl door. We are issuing this AD to detect and correct cracking of the hinge lock nuts, which could result in separation of the hinge from the fan cowl door, the in-flight loss of the door, and consequent damage to the airplane.

    (f) Compliance

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

    (g) Inspect to Determine Serial Number

    Within 24 months after the effective date of this AD: Inspect to determine if any fan cowl door has a serial number 10029001 through 11092003 inclusive, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Airbus Service Bulletin A320-71-1062, dated July 28, 2014; or Goodrich Aerostructures Service Bulletin RA32071-151, dated June 11, 2014. A review of airplane maintenance records is acceptable in lieu of the inspection required by this paragraph, provided those records can be relied upon for that purpose and the serial number can be positively identified by that review.

    (h) Inspection and Replacement

    For any fan cowl door having any serial number identified in paragraph (g) of this AD: Within 24 months after the effective date of this AD, do a detailed inspection for cracking of the hinge lock nuts of the door, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Airbus Service Bulletin A320-71-1062, dated July 28, 2014; or Goodrich Aerostructures Service Bulletin RA32071-151, dated June 11, 2014. If any crack is found, before further flight, replace each cracked hinge lock nut, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of Airbus Service Bulletin A320-71-1062, dated July 28, 2014; or Goodrich Aerostructures Service Bulletin RA32071-151, dated June 11, 2014.

    (i) Special Flight Permits

    Special flight permits, as described in Section 21.197 and Section 21.199 of the Federal Aviation Regulations (14 CFR 21.197 and 21.199), are not allowed.

    (j) Other FAA AD Provisions

    The following provisions also apply to this AD:

    (1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. In accordance with 14 CFR 39.19, send your request to your principal inspector or local Flight Standards District Office, as appropriate. If sending information directly to the International Branch, send it to ATTN: Sanjay Ralhan, Aerospace Engineer, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057-3356; telephone: 425-227-1405; fax: 425-227-1149. Information may be emailed to: [email protected] Before using any approved AMOC, notify your appropriate principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight standards district office/certificate holding district office. The AMOC approval letter must specifically reference this AD.

    (2) Contacting the Manufacturer: For any requirement in this AD to obtain corrective actions from a manufacturer, the action must be accomplished using a method approved by the Manager, International Branch, ANM-116, Transport Airplane Directorate, FAA; or the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA); or Airbus's EASA Design Organization Approval (DOA). If approved by the DOA, the approval must include the DOA-authorized signature.

    (k) Related Information

    Refer to Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information (MCAI) EASA Airworthiness Directive 2014-0276, dated December 19, 2014, for related information. This MCAI may be found in the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=FAA-2015-1991-0003.

    (l) Material Incorporated by Reference

    (1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference (IBR) of the service information listed in this paragraph under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51.

    (2) You must use this service information as applicable to do the actions required by this AD, unless this AD specifies otherwise.

    (i) Airbus Service Bulletin A320-71-1062, dated July 28, 2014.

    (ii) Goodrich Aerostructures Service Bulletin RA32071-151, dated June 11, 2014.

    (3) For Airbus service information identified in this AD, contact Airbus, Airworthiness Office—EIAS, 1 Rond Point Maurice Bellonte, 31707 Blagnac Cedex, France; telephone: +33 5 61 93 36 96; fax: +33 5 61 93 44 51; email: [email protected]; Internet http://www.airbus.com.

    (4) For Goodrich service information identified in this AD, contact Goodrich Aerostructures, 850 Lagoon Drive, Chula Vista, California, 91910-2098; telephone: 619-691-2719; email: [email protected]; Internet: http://www.goodrich.com/TechPubs.

    (5) You may view this service information at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221.

    (6) You may view this service information that is incorporated by reference at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to: http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html.

    Issued in Renton, Washington, on January 9, 2016. Michael Kaszycki, Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-00952 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA-2015-2983; Directorate Identifier 2015-NE-20-AD; Amendment 39-18383; AD 2016-02-04] RIN 2120-AA64 Airworthiness Directives; CFM International S.A. Turbofan Engines AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    We are adopting a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain CFM International S.A. (CFM) CFM56-5B series turbofan engines. This AD was prompted by a corrected lifing analysis by the engine manufacturer that shows the need to identify an initial and repetitive inspection threshold for certain part number (P/N) turbine rear frames (TRFs). This AD requires initial and repetitive inspections of certain P/N TRFs on the low-pressure turbine (LPT) frame assembly. We are issuing this AD to prevent failure of the TRF on the LPT frame assembly, which could lead to engine separation, damage to the engine, and damage to the airplane.

    DATES:

    This AD is effective March 1, 2016.

    The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference of certain publications listed in this AD as of March 1, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    For service information identified in this AD, contact CFM International Inc., Aviation Operations Center, 1 Neumann Way, M/D Room 285, Cincinnati, OH 45125; phone: 877-432-3272; fax: 877-432-3329; email: [email protected] You may view this service information at the FAA, Engine & Propeller Directorate, 1200 District Avenue, Burlington, MA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 781-238-7125. It is also available on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2015-2983.

    Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2015-2983; or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The address for the Docket Office (phone: 800-647-5527) is Document Management Facility, U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Kyle Gustafson, Aerospace Engineer, Engine Certification Office, FAA, Engine & Propeller Directorate, 1200 District Avenue, Burlington, MA 01803; phone: 781-238-7183; fax: 781-238-7199; email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Discussion

    We issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend 14 CFR part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to certain CFM CFM56-5B series turbofan engines. The NPRM published in the Federal Register on October 2, 2015 (80 FR 59672). The NPRM was prompted by a corrected lifing analysis by the engine manufacturer that shows the need to identify an initial and repetitive inspection threshold for certain P/N TRFs. The NPRM proposed to require initial and repetitive inspections of certain P/N TRFs on the LPT frame assembly. We are issuing this AD to correct the unsafe condition on these products.

    Comments

    We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing this AD. We received no comments on the NPRM (80 FR 59672, October 2, 2015) or on the determination of the cost to the public.

    Clarification to the Repetitive Inspection Requirements

    We have revised the Compliance, paragraph (e) of this AD, to clarify the repetitive inspection requirements for when the initial inspection is done prior to the initial inspection threshold.

    Conclusion

    We reviewed the relevant data and determined that air safety and the public interest require adopting this AD as proposed except for the changes described above. We have determined that the changes described above are minor changes, as they:

    • Are consistent with the intent that was proposed in the NPRM (80 FR 59672, October 2, 2015) for correcting the unsafe condition; and

    • Do not add any additional burden upon the public than was already proposed in the NPRM (80 FR 59672, October 2, 2015).

    We also determined that these changes will not increase the economic burden on any operator or increase the scope of this AD.

    Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    We reviewed CFM Service Bulletin (SB) No. CFM56-5B S/B 72-0850, dated December 19, 2012, which describes procedures for inspecting the TRF. This service information is reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by the means identified in the ADDRESSES section of this final rule.

    Other Related Service Information

    We also reviewed CFM SB No. CFM56-5B S/B 72-0308. Operators subject to this AD are required to follow different initial and repetitive inspection intervals depending on whether CFM SB No. CFM56-5B S/B 72-0308 has been applied.

    Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this AD affects about 94 engines installed on airplanes of U.S. registry. We also estimate that it will take about 3 hours per engine to do the inspection. The average labor rate is $85 per hour. Based on these figures, we estimate the cost of this AD on U.S. operators to be $23,970.

    Authority for this Rulemaking

    Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety. Subtitle I, section 106, describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII: Aviation Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the Agency's authority.

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

    Regulatory Findings

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

    For the reasons discussed above, I certify that this AD:

    (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),

    (3) Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska to the extent that it justifies making a regulatory distinction, and

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

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

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

    Adoption of the Amendment

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

    PART 39—AIRWORTHINESS DIRECTIVES 1. The authority citation for parthttp//www.continentalsanantonio.com 39 continues to read as follows: Authority:

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

    § 39.13 [Amended]
    2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD):

    2016-02-04 CFM International S.A.: Amendment 39-18383; Docket No. FAA-2015-2893; Directorate Identifier 2015-NE-20-AD.

    (a) Effective Date

    This AD is effective March 1, 2016.

    (b) Affected ADs

    None.

    (c) Applicability

    This AD applies to CFM International S.A. (CFM) CFM56-5B engines with turbine rear frame (TRF), part number (P/N) 338-102-907-0 or P/N 338-102-908-0, installed.

    (d) Unsafe Condition

    This AD was prompted by a corrected lifing analysis by the engine manufacturer that shows the need for an initial and repetitive inspection of certain P/N TRFs on the low-pressure turbine (LPT) frame assembly. We are issuing this AD to prevent failure of the TRF on the LPT frame assembly, which could lead to engine separation, damage to the engine, and damage to the airplane.

    (e) Compliance

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

    (1) For Engines that have Applied CFM Service Bulletin (SB) No. CFM56-5B S/B 72-0308:

    (i) Prior to accumulating 25,000 cycles since new (CSN) on the TRF of the LPT frame assembly or within 150 cycles after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs later, perform an initial eddy current inspection (ECI) or a fluorescent penetrant inspection (FPI) of the TRF mount struts on the LPT assembly.

    (ii) For engines with unknown CSN on the TRF of the LPT frame assembly, perform the initial inspection required by this AD within 150 cycles-in-service (CIS) after the effective date of this AD.

    (iii) Use paragraph 3.B. in the Accomplishment Instructions of CFM SB No. CFM56-5B S/B 72-0850, dated December 19, 2012, to do the ECI and paragraph 3.C. in the Accomplishment Instructions of CFM SB No. CFM56-5B S/B 72-0850, to do the FPI. Do not include TRF mount strut crack lengths towards the cumulative crack length after the cracks are repaired.

    (iv) If no cracks are found on any of the three TRF mount struts, repeat the inspection within 1,670 cycles since last inspection (CSLI) or prior to accumulating 25,000 CSN on the TRF of the LPT assembly, whichever occurs later.

    (v) If the cumulative length of all cracks found at any TRF mount strut location is less than 0.20 inches, repeat the inspection within 1,670 cycles CSLI.

    (vi) If the cumulative length of cracks found at any TRF mount strut location is greater than or equal to 0.20 inches, but less than 0.25 inches, repeat the inspection within 280 CSLI.

    (vii) If the cumulative length of cracks found at any TRF mount strut location is 0.25 inches or greater, replace the TRF with a part eligible for installation before further flight.

    (2) For Engines that have Not Applied CFM SB No. CFM56-5B S/B 72-0308:

    (i) Prior to accumulating 32,000 CSN on the TRF of the LPT frame assembly or within 150 cycles after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs later, perform an initial ECI or FPI of the TRF mount struts on the LPT frame assembly.

    (ii) For engines with unknown CSN on the TRF of the LPT frame assembly, perform the initial inspection required by this AD within 150 CIS after the effective date of this AD.

    (iii) Use paragraph 3.B. in the Accomplishment Instructions of CFM SB No. CFM56-5B S/B 72-0850, dated December 19, 2012, to do the ECI and paragraph 3.C. in the Accomplishment Instructions of CFM SB No. CFM56-5B S/B 72-0850, to do the FPI. Do not include TRF mount strut crack lengths towards the cumulative crack length after the cracks are repaired.

    (iv) If no cracks are found on any of the three TRF mount struts, repeat the inspection within 2,500 CSLI or prior to accumulating 32,000 CSN on the TRF of the LPT assembly, whichever occurs later.

    (v) If the cumulative length of cracks found at any TRF mount strut location is less than 0.20 inches, repeat the inspection within 2,500 CSLI.

    (vi) If the cumulative length of cracks found at any TRF mount strut location is greater than or equal to 0.20 inches and less than 0.25 inches, repeat the inspection within 370 CSLI.

    (vii) If the cumulative length of cracks found at any TRF mount strut location is 0.25 inches or greater, replace the TRF with a part eligible for installation before further flight.

    (f) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    The Manager, Engine Certification Office, FAA, may approve AMOCs for this AD. Use the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19 to make your request. You may email your request to: [email protected]

    (g) Related Information

    (1) For more information about this AD, contact Kyle Gustafson, Aerospace Engineer, Engine Certification Office, FAA, Engine & Propeller Directorate, 1200 District Avenue, Burlington, MA 01803; phone: 781-238-7183; fax: 781-238-7199; email: [email protected]

    (2) CFM SB No. CFM56-5B S/B 72-0308, which is not incorporated by reference in this AD, can be obtained from CFM, using the contact information in paragraph (h)(4) of this AD.

    (h) Material Incorporated by Reference

    (1) The Director of the Federal Register approved the incorporation by reference (IBR) of the service information listed in this paragraph under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51.

    (2) You must use this service information as applicable to do the actions required by this AD, unless the AD specifies otherwise.

    (3) The following service information was approved for IBR on March 1, 2016.

    (i) CFM International S. A. (CFM) Service Bulletin No. CFM56-5B S/B 72-0850, dated December 19, 2012.

    (ii) Reserved.

    (4) For CFM service information identified in this AD, contact CFM International Inc., Aviation Operations Center, 1 Neumann Way, M/D Room 285, Cincinnati, OH 45125; phone: 877-432-3272; fax: 877-432-3329; email: [email protected]

    (5) You may view this service information at the FAA, Engine & Propeller Directorate, 1200 District Avenue, Burlington, MA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 781-238-7125.

    (6) You may view this service information at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to: http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html.

    Issued in Burlington, Massachusetts, on January 14, 2016. Gaetano Sciortino, Acting Directorate Manager, Engine & Propeller Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01266 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 97 [Docket No. 31051; Amdt. No. 3673] Standard Instrument Approach Procedures, and Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle Departure Procedures; Miscellaneous Amendments AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    This rule establishes, amends, suspends, or removes Standard Instrument Approach Procedures (SIAPs) and associated Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle Departure Procedures (ODPs) for operations at certain airports. These regulatory actions are needed because of the adoption of new or revised criteria, or because of changes occurring in the National Airspace System, such as the commissioning of new navigational facilities, adding new obstacles, or changing air traffic requirements. These changes are designed to provide safe and efficient use of the navigable airspace and to promote safe flight operations under instrument flight rules at the affected airports.

    DATES:

    This rule is effective January 26, 2016. The compliance date for each SIAP, associated Takeoff Minimums, and ODP is specified in the amendatory provisions.

    The incorporation by reference of certain publications listed in the regulations is approved by the Director of the Federal Register as of January 26, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Availability of matters incorporated by reference in the amendment is as follows:

    For Examination

    1. U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Ops–M30, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Bldg., Ground Floor, Washington, DC, 20590-0001.

    2. The FAA Air Traffic Organization Service Area in which the affected airport is located;

    3. The office of Aeronautical Navigation Products, 6500 South MacArthur Blvd., Oklahoma City, OK 73169 or,

    4. The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to: http://www.archives.gov/federal_register/code_of_federal_regulations/ibr_locations.html.

    Availability

    All SIAPs and Takeoff Minimums and ODPs are available online free of charge. Visit the National Flight Data Center at nfdc.faa.gov to register. Additionally, individual SIAP and Takeoff Minimums and ODP copies may be obtained from the FAA Air Traffic Organization Service Area in which the affected airport is located.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Richard A. Dunham III, Flight Procedure Standards Branch (AFS-420), Flight Technologies and Programs Divisions, Flight Standards Service, Federal Aviation Administration, Mike Monroney Aeronautical Center, 6500 South acArthur Blvd. Oklahoma City, OK. 73169 (Mail Address: P.O. Box 25082, Oklahoma City, OK 73125) Telephone: (405) 954-4164.

    This rule amends Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 97 (14 CFR part 97), by establishing, amending, suspending, or removes SIAPS, Takeoff Minimums and/or ODPS. The complete regulatory description of each SIAP and its associated Takeoff Minimums or ODP for an identified airport is listed on FAA form documents which are incorporated by reference in this amendment under 5 U.S.C. 552(a), 1 CFR part 51, and 14 CFR part § 97.20. The applicable FAA forms are FAA Forms 8260-3, 8260-4, 8260-5, 8260-15A, and 8260-15B when required by an entry on 8260-15A.

    The large number of SIAPs, Takeoff Minimums and ODPs, their complex nature, and the need for a special format make publication in the Federal Register expensive and impractical. Further, airmen do not use the regulatory text of the SIAPs, Takeoff Minimums or ODPs, but instead refer to their graphic depiction on charts printed by publishers of aeronautical materials. Thus, the advantages of incorporation by reference are realized and publication of the complete description of each SIAP, Takeoff Minimums and ODP listed on FAA form documents is unnecessary. This amendment provides the affected CFRs and specifies the types of SIAPs, Takeoff Minimums and ODPs with their applicable effective dates. This amendment also identifies the airport and its location, the procedure, and the amendment number.

    Availability and Summary of Material Incorporated by Reference

    The material incorporated by reference is publicly available as listed in the ADDRESSES section.

    The material incorporated by reference describes SIAPS, Takeoff Minimums and/or ODPS as identified in the amendatory language for part 97 of this final rule.

    The Rule

    This amendment to 14 CFR part 97 is effective upon publication of each separate SIAP, Takeoff Minimums and ODP as Amended in the transmittal. Some SIAP and Takeoff Minimums and textual ODP amendments may have been issued previously by the FAA in a Flight Data Center (FDC) Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) as an emergency action of immediate flight safety relating directly to published aeronautical charts.

    The circumstances that created the need for some SIAP and Takeoff Minimums and ODP amendments may require making them effective in less than 30 days. For the remaining SIAPs and Takeoff Minimums and ODPs, an effective date at least 30 days after publication is provided.

    Further, the SIAPs and Takeoff Minimums and ODPs contained in this amendment are based on the criteria contained in the U.S. Standard for Terminal Instrument Procedures (TERPS). In developing these SIAPs and Takeoff Minimums and ODPs, the TERPS criteria were applied to the conditions existing or anticipated at the affected airports. Because of the close and immediate relationship between these SIAPs, Takeoff Minimums and ODPs, and safety in air commerce, I find that notice and public procedure under 5 U.S.C. 553(b) are impracticable and contrary to the public interest and, where applicable, under 5 U.S.C 553(d), good cause exists for making some SIAPs effective in less than 30 days.

    The FAA has determined that this regulation only involves an established body of technical regulations for which frequent and routine amendments are necessary to keep them operationally current. It, therefore—(1) Is not a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866;(2) is not a “significant rule” under DOT Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034; February 26, 1979); and (3)does not warrant preparation of a regulatory evaluation as the anticipated impact is so minimal. For the same reason, the FAA certifies that this amendment will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 97

    Air traffic control, Airports, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air).

    Issued in Washington, DC on December 4, 2015. John Duncan, Director, Flight Standards Service. Adoption of the Amendment

    Accordingly, pursuant to the authority delegated to me, Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 97 (14 CFR part 97) is amended by establishing, amending, suspending, or removing Standard Instrument Approach Procedures and/or Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle Departure Procedures effective at 0901 UTC on the dates specified, as follows:

    PART 97—STANDARD INSTRUMENT APPROACH PROCEDURES 1. The authority citation for part 97 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    49 U.S.C. 106(f), 106(g), 40103, 40106, 40113, 40114, 40120, 44502, 44514, 44701, 44719, 44721-44722.

    2. Part 97 is amended to read as follows:
    Effective January 26, 2016 Compliance Date 7 January 2016 Paso Robles, CA, Paso Robles Muni, RNAV (GPS) RWY 31, Orig Oxford, CT, Waterbury-Oxford, RNAV (GPS) RWY 18, Amdt 2 Plymouth, IN, Plymouth Muni, RNAV (GPS) RWY 10, Orig Plymouth, IN, Plymouth Muni, RNAV (GPS) RWY 28, Orig Detroit, MI, Willow Run, ILS OR LOC RWY 23L, Amdt 8 Detroit, MI, Willow Run, RNAV (GPS) RWY 23L, Amdt 2 Lynchburg, VA, Falwell, RNAV (GPS) RWY 28, Orig-B Effective 4 February 2016 Dillingham, AK, Dillingham, VOR/DME RWY 19, Amdt 7C, CANCELED Middleton Island, AK, Middleton Island, VOR/DME RWY 20, Amdt 6B, CANCELED Talladega, AL, Talladega Muni, VOR/DME RWY 4, Amdt 6A, CANCELED Lake Village, AR, Lake Village Muni, VOR/DME-B, Amdt 6B, CANCELED Marshall, AR, Searcy County, RNAV (GPS) RWY 5, Orig Marshall, AR, Searcy County, RNAV (GPS) RWY 23, Orig Marshall, AR, Searcy County, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Orig Walnut Ridge, AR, Walnut Ridge Rgnl, VOR-A, Amdt 16A, CANCELED Santa Ynez, CA, Santa Ynez, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 2 Denver, CO, Denver Intl, RNAV (GPS) Y RWY 8, Amdt 1B Denver, CO, Denver Intl, RNAV (RNP) Z RWY 8, Orig-B Apalachicola, FL, Apalachicola Rgnl-Cleve Randolph Field, NDB RWY 32, Amdt 2B, CANCELED Fort Pierce, FL, St Lucie County Intl, NDB-A, Orig-D, CANCELED Augusta, GA, Augusta Rgnl at Bush Field, VOR/DME RWY 17, Amdt 4A, CANCELED Olney-Noble, IL, Olney-Noble, VOR/DME-A, Amdt 9A, CANCELED Urbana, IL, Frasca Field, VOR/DME OR GPS-B, Amdt 6A, CANCELED Anderson, IN, Anderson Muni-Darlington Field, VOR-A, Amdt 9A, CANCELED Northampton, MA, Northampton, VOR-A, Amdt 5, CANCELED Provincetown, MA, Provincetown Muni, ILS OR LOC RWY 7, Amdt 9 Provincetown, MA, Provincetown Muni, RNAV (GPS) RWY 7, Amdt 1 Baltimore, MD, Baltimore/Washington Intl Thurgood Marshall, ILS OR LOC RWY 15L, Amdt 4 Baltimore, MD, Baltimore/Washington Intl Thurgood Marshall, ILS OR LOC RWY 28, Amdt 17 Baltimore, MD, Baltimore/Washington Intl Thurgood Marshall, ILS OR LOC RWY 33R, Amdt 3 Baltimore, MD, Baltimore/Washington Intl Thurgood Marshall, RNAV (GPS) RWY 33R, Amdt 4 Baltimore, MD, Baltimore/Washington Intl Thurgood Marshall, RNAV (GPS) Y RWY 28, Amdt 2 Baltimore, MD, Baltimore/Washington Intl Thurgood Marshall, RNAV (RNP) Z RWY 28, Amdt 1 Baltimore, MD, Baltimore/Washington Intl Thurgood Marshall, VOR RWY 28, Amdt 24, CANCELED Presque Isle, ME, Northern Maine Regional Arpt At Presque Is, VOR/DME RWY 1, Amdt 12B, CANCELED Gaylord, MI, Gaylord Rgnl, VOR RWY 9, Amdt 2A, CANCELED Grand Rapids, MI, Gerald R. Ford Intl, VOR RWY 35, Amdt 1A, CANCELED Muskegon, MI, Muskegon County, VOR-A, Amdt 21, CANCELED Natchez, MS, Hardy-Anders Field Natchez-Adams County, VOR/DME RWY 13, Amdt 3, CANCELED Beaufort, NC, Michael J Smith Field, RNAV (GPS) RWY 26, Amdt 3 Erwin, NC, Harnett Rgnl Jetport, VOR/DME RWY 5, Amdt 2B, CANCELED Myrtle Beach, SC, Myrtle Beach Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 18, Amdt 4 Myrtle Beach, SC, Myrtle Beach Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 36, Amdt 4 Myrtle Beach, SC, Myrtle Beach Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 18, Amdt 4 Myrtle Beach, SC, Myrtle Beach Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 36, Amdt 4 Myrtle Beach, SC, Myrtle Beach Intl, RNAV (GPS)-A, Amdt 1 Port Angeles, WA, William R Fairchild Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 8, Amdt 3 Port Angeles, WA, William R Fairchild Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 8, Amdt 1 Port Angeles, WA, William R Fairchild Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 26, Amdt 1
    [FR Doc. 2016-00880 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 97 [Docket No. 31052; Amdt. No. 3674] Standard Instrument Approach Procedures, and Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle Departure Procedures; Miscellaneous Amendments AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    This rule amends, suspends, or removes Standard Instrument Approach Procedures (SIAPs) and associated Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle Departure Procedures for operations at certain airports. These regulatory actions are needed because of the adoption of new or revised criteria, or because of changes occurring in the National Airspace System, such as the commissioning of new navigational facilities, adding new obstacles, or changing air traffic requirements. These changes are designed to provide for the safe and efficient use of the navigable airspace and to promote safe flight operations under instrument flight rules at the affected airports.

    DATES:

    This rule is effective January 26, 2016. The compliance date for each SIAP, associated Takeoff Minimums, and ODP is specified in the amendatory provisions.

    The incorporation by reference of certain publications listed in the regulations is approved by the Director of the Federal Register as of January 26, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Availability of matter incorporated by reference in the amendment is as follows:

    For Examination

    1. U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Ops–M30, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Bldg., Ground Floor, Washington, DC, 20590-0001;

    2. The FAA Air Traffic Organization Service Area in which the affected airport is located;

    3. The office of Aeronautical Navigation Products, 6500 South MacArthur Blvd., Oklahoma City, OK 73169 or,

    4. The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA).

    For information on the availability of this material at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to: http://www.archives.gov/federal_register/code_of_federal_regulations/ibr_locations.html.

    Availability

    All SIAPs and Takeoff Minimums and ODPs are available online free of charge. Visit the National Flight Data Center online at nfdc.faa.gov to register. Additionally, individual SIAP and Takeoff Minimums and ODP copies may be obtained from the FAA Air Traffic Organization Service Area in which the affected airport is located.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Richard A. Dunham III, Flight Procedure Standards Branch (AFS-420) Flight Technologies and Procedures Division, Flight Standards Service, Federal Aviation Administration, Mike Monroney Aeronautical Center, 6500 South MacArthur Blvd., Oklahoma City, OK. 73169 (Mail Address: P.O. Box 25082 Oklahoma City, OK 73125) telephone: (405) 954-4164.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This rule amends Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 97 (14 CFR part 97) by amending the referenced SIAPs. The complete regulatory description of each SIAP is listed on the appropriate FAA Form 8260, as modified by the National Flight Data Center (NFDC)/Permanent Notice to Airmen (P-NOTAM), and is incorporated by reference under 5 U.S.C. 552(a), 1 CFR part 51, and 14 CFR § 97.20. The large number of SIAPs, their complex nature, and the need for a special format make their verbatim publication in the Federal Register expensive and impractical. Further, airmen do not use the regulatory text of the SIAPs, but refer to their graphic depiction on charts printed by publishers of aeronautical materials. Thus, the advantages of incorporation by reference are realized and publication of the complete description of each SIAP contained on FAA form documents is unnecessary.

    This amendment provides the affected CFRs, and specifies the SIAPs and Takeoff Minimums and ODPs with their applicable effective dates. This amendment also identifies the airport and its location, the procedure and the amendment number.

    Availability and Summary of Material Incorporated by Reference

    The material incorporated by reference is publicly available as listed in the ADDRESSES section.

    The material incorporated by reference describes SIAPs, Takeoff Minimums and ODPs as identified in the amendatory language for part 97 of this final rule.

    The Rule

    This amendment to 14 CFR part 97 is effective upon publication of each separate SIAP and Takeoff Minimums and ODP as amended in the transmittal. For safety and timeliness of change considerations, this amendment incorporates only specific changes contained for each SIAP and Takeoff Minimums and ODP as modified by FDC permanent NOTAMs.

    The SIAPs and Takeoff Minimums and ODPs, as modified by FDC permanent NOTAM, and contained in this amendment are based on the criteria contained in the U.S. Standard for Terminal Instrument Procedures (TERPS). In developing these changes to SIAPs and Takeoff Minimums and ODPs, the TERPS criteria were applied only to specific conditions existing at the affected airports. All SIAP amendments in this rule have been previously issued by the FAA in a FDC NOTAM as an emergency action of immediate flight safety relating directly to published aeronautical charts.

    The circumstances that created the need for these SIAP and Takeoff Minimums and ODP amendments require making them effective in less than 30 days.

    Because of the close and immediate relationship between these SIAPs, Takeoff Minimums and ODPs, and safety in air commerce, I find that notice and public procedure under 5 U.S.C. 553(b) are impracticable and contrary to the public interest and, where applicable, under 5 U.S.C. 553(d), good cause exists for making these SIAPs effective in less than 30 days.

    The FAA has determined that this regulation only involves an established body of technical regulations for which frequent and routine amendments are necessary to keep them operationally current. It, therefore— (1) Is not a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866; (2) is not a “significant rule” under DOT regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034; February 26, 1979); and (3) does not warrant preparation of a regulatory evaluation as the anticipated impact is so minimal. For the same reason, the FAA certifies that this amendment will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR part 97

    Air traffic control, Airports, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air).

    Issued in Washington, DC on December 4, 2015. John Duncan, Director, Flight Standards Service. Adoption of the Amendment

    Accordingly, pursuant to the authority delegated to me, Title 14, Code of Federal regulations, Part 97, (14 CFR part 97), is amended by amending Standard Instrument Approach Procedures and Takeoff Minimums and ODPs, effective at 0901 UTC on the dates specified, as follows:

    PART 97—STANDARD INSTRUMENT APPROACH PROCEDURES 1. The authority citation for part 97 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    49 U.S.C. 106(f), 106(g), 40103, 40106, 40113, 40114, 40120, 44502, 44514, 44701, 44719, 44721-44722.

    2. Part 97 is amended to read as follows:
    §§ 97.23, 97.25, 97.27, 97.31, 97.33, 97.35 [Amended]

    By amending: § 97.23 VOR, VOR/DME, VOR or TACAN, and VOR/DME or TACAN; § 97.25 LOC, LOC/DME, LDA, LDA/DME, SDF, SDF/DME; § 97.27 NDB, NDB/DME; § 97.29 ILS, ILS/DME, MLS, MLS/DME, MLS/RNAV; § 97.31 RADAR SIAPs; § 97.33 RNAV SIAPs; and § 97.35 COPTER SIAPs, Identified as follows:

    *   *   * Effective Upon Publication AIRAC date State City Airport FDC
  • number
  • FDC date Subject
    7-Jan-16 WA Everett Snohomish County (Paine Fld) 5/4281 11/2/15 This NOTAM, published in TL 16-01, is hereby rescinded in its entirety. 7-Jan-16 DC Washington Washington Dulles Intl 5/0756 11/24/15 ILS OR LOC/DME RWY 12, Amdt 9A. 7-Jan-16 DC Washington Washington Dulles Intl 5/0758 11/24/15 ILS OR LOC/DME RWY 1C, Amdt 2B. 7-Jan-16 DC Washington Washington Dulles Intl 5/0764 11/24/15 VOR/DME RWY 12, Amdt 9B. 7-Jan-16 DC Washington Washington Dulles Intl 5/0765 11/24/15 RNAV (GPS) RWY 12, Amdt 1A. 7-Jan-16 DC Washington Washington Dulles Intl 5/0766 11/24/15 RNAV (GPS) Y RWY 1C, Amdt 1A. 7-Jan-16 TN Smithville Smithville Muni 5/2872 11/23/15 RNAV (GPS) RWY 6, Amdt 3. 7-Jan-16 TN Smithville Smithville Muni 5/2873 11/23/15 RNAV (GPS) RWY 24, Amdt 3. 7-Jan-16 VA Lynchburg Lynchburg Rgnl/Preston Glenn Fld 5/4424 11/23/15 RNAV (GPS) RWY 4, Orig. 7-Jan-16 VA Lynchburg Lynchburg Rgnl/Preston Glenn Fld 5/4425 11/23/15 VOR RWY 4, Amdt 12. 7-Jan-16 VA Lynchburg Lynchburg Rgnl/Preston Glenn Fld 5/4426 11/23/15 RNAV (GPS) RWY 22, Orig. 7-Jan-16 VA Lynchburg Lynchburg Rgnl/Preston Glenn Fld 5/4427 11/23/15 VOR/DME RWY 22, Amdt 8B. 7-Jan-16 VA Lynchburg Lynchburg Rgnl/Preston Glenn Fld 5/4428 11/23/15 ILS OR LOC RWY 4, Amdt 17. 7-Jan-16 SC Charleston Charleston Executive 5/8027 11/25/15 Takeoff Minimums and (Obstacle) DP, Amdt 1. 7-Jan-16 GA Macon Middle Georgia Rgnl 5/8992 11/24/15 RNAV (GPS) RWY 5, Amdt 1B. 7-Jan-16 GA Macon Middle Georgia Rgnl 5/8994 11/24/15 ILS OR LOC/DME RWY 5, Amdt 1B.
    [FR Doc. 2016-00878 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission 18 CFR Part 40 [Docket No. RM15-14-000] Revised Critical Infrastructure Protection Reliability Standards AGENCY:

    Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, DOE.

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (Commission) approves seven critical infrastructure protection (CIP) Reliability Standards: CIP-003-6 (Security Management Controls), CIP-004-6 (Personnel and Training), CIP-006-6 (Physical Security of BES Cyber Systems), CIP-007-6 (Systems Security Management), CIP-009-6 (Recovery Plans for BES Cyber Systems), CIP-010-2 (Configuration Change Management and Vulnerability Assessments), and CIP-011-2 (Information Protection). The proposed Reliability Standards address the cyber security of the bulk electric system and improve upon the current Commission-approved CIP Reliability Standards. In addition, the Commission directs NERC to develop certain modifications to improve the CIP Reliability Standards.

    DATES:

    This rule will become effective March 31, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Daniel Phillips (Technical Information), Office of Electric Reliability, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington DC 20426, (202) 502-6387, [email protected]. Simon Slobodnik (Technical Information), Office of Electric Reliability, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, (202) 502-6707, [email protected]. Kevin Ryan (Legal Information), Office of the General Counsel, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, (202) 502-6840, [email protected].
    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Order No. 822 Final Rule (Issued January 21, 2016)

    1. Pursuant to section 215 of the Federal Power Act (FPA),1 the Commission approves seven critical infrastructure protection (CIP) Reliability Standards: CIP-003-6 (Security Management Controls), CIP-004-6 (Personnel and Training), CIP-006-6 (Physical Security of BES Cyber Systems), CIP-007-6 (Systems Security Management), CIP-009-6 (Recovery Plans for BES Cyber Systems), CIP-010-2 (Configuration Change Management and Vulnerability Assessments), and CIP-011-2 (Information Protection) (proposed CIP Reliability Standards). The North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC), the Commission-certified Electric Reliability Organization (ERO), submitted the seven proposed CIP Reliability Standards in response to Order No. 791.2 The Commission also approves NERC's implementation plan and violation risk factor and violation severity level assignments. In addition, the Commission approves NERC's new or revised definitions for inclusion in the NERC Glossary of Terms Used in Reliability Standards (NERC Glossary), subject to modification. Further, the Commission approves the retirement of Reliability Standards CIP-003-5, CIP-004-5.1, CIP-006-5, CIP-007-5, CIP-009-5, CIP-010-1, and CIP-011-1.

    1 16 U.S.C. 824o.

    2Version 5 Critical Infrastructure Protection Reliability Standards, Order No. 791, 78 FR. 72,755 (Dec. 3, 2013), 145 FERC ¶ 61,160 (2013), order on clarification and reh'g, Order No. 791-A, 146 FERC ¶ 61,188 (2014).

    2. The proposed CIP Reliability Standards are designed to mitigate the cybersecurity risks to bulk electric system facilities, systems, and equipment, which, if destroyed, degraded, or otherwise rendered unavailable as a result of a cybersecurity incident, would affect the reliable operation of the Bulk-Power System.3 As discussed below, the Commission finds that the proposed CIP Reliability Standards are just, reasonable, not unduly discriminatory or preferential, and in the public interest, and address the directives in Order No. 791 by: (1) Eliminating the “identify, assess, and correct” language in 17 of the CIP version 5 Standard requirements; (2) providing enhanced security controls for Low Impact assets; (3) providing controls to address the risks posed by transient electronic devices (e.g., thumb drives and laptop computers) used at High and Medium Impact BES Cyber Systems; and (4) addressing in an equally effective and efficient manner the need for a NERC Glossary definition for the term “communication networks.” Accordingly, the Commission approves the proposed CIP Reliability Standards because they improve the base-line cybersecurity posture of applicable entities compared to the current Commission-approved CIP Reliability Standards.

    3See NERC Petition at 3.

    3. In addition, pursuant to FPA section 215(d)(5), the Commission directs NERC to develop certain modifications to improve the CIP Reliability Standards. First, NERC is directed to develop modifications to address the protection of transient electronic devices used at Low Impact BES Cyber Systems. As discussed below, the modifications developed by NERC should be designed to effectively address, in an appropriately tailored manner, the risks posed by transient electronic devices to Low Impact BES Cyber Systems. Second, the Commission directs NERC to develop modifications to CIP-006-6 to require protections for communication network components and data communicated between all bulk electric system Control Centers according to the risk posed to the bulk electric system. With regard to the questions raised in the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NOPR) concerning the potential need for additional remote access controls, NERC must conduct a comprehensive study that identifies the strength of the CIP version 5 remote access controls, the risks posed by remote access-related threats and vulnerabilities, and appropriate mitigating controls.4 Third, the Commission directs NERC to develop modifications to its definition for Low Impact External Routable Connectivity, as discussed in detail below.

    4Revised Critical Infrastructure Protection Reliability Standards, Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, 80 FR 43354 (July 22, 2015), 152 FERC ¶ 61,054, at 60 (2015).

    4. The Commission, in the NOPR, also proposed to direct that NERC develop requirements relating to supply chain management for industrial control system hardware, software, and services.5 After review of comments on this topic, the Commission scheduled a staff-led technical conference for January 28, 2016, in order to facilitate a structured dialogue on supply chain risk management issues identified by the NOPR. Accordingly, this Final Rule does not address supply chain risk management issues. Rather, the Commission will determine the appropriate action on this issue after the scheduled technical conference.

    5Id. P 66.

    I. Background A. Section 215 and Mandatory Reliability Standards

    5. Section 215 of the FPA requires a Commission-certified ERO to develop mandatory and enforceable Reliability Standards, subject to Commission review and approval. Reliability Standards may be enforced by the ERO, subject to Commission oversight, or by the Commission independently.6 Pursuant to section 215 of the FPA, the Commission established a process to select and certify an ERO,7 and subsequently certified NERC.8

    6 16 U.S.C. 824o(e).

    7Rules Concerning Certification of the Electric Reliability Organization; and Procedures for the Establishment, Approval, and Enforcement of Electric Reliability Standards, Order No. 672, FERC Stats. & Regs. ¶ 31,204, order on reh'g, Order No. 672-A, FERC Stats. & Regs. ¶ 31,212 (2006).

    8North American Electric Reliability Corp., 116 FERC ¶ 61,062, order on reh'g and compliance, 117 FERC ¶ 61,126 (2006), aff'd sub nom. Alcoa, Inc. v. FERC, 564 F.3d 1342 (D.C. Cir. 2009).

    B. Order No. 791

    6. On November 22, 2013, in Order No. 791, the Commission approved the CIP version 5 Standards (Reliability Standards CIP-002-5 through CIP-009-5, and CIP-010-1 and CIP-011-1).9 The Commission determined that the CIP version 5 Standards improve the CIP Reliability Standards because, inter alia, they include a revised BES Cyber Asset categorization methodology that incorporates mandatory protections for all High, Medium, and Low Impact BES Cyber Assets, and because several new security controls should improve the security posture of responsible entities.10 In addition, pursuant to section 215(d)(5) of the FPA, the Commission directed NERC to: (1) Remove the “identify, assess, and correct” language in 17 of the CIP Standard requirements; (2) develop enhanced security controls for Low Impact assets; (3) develop controls to protect transient electronic devices; (4) create a NERC Glossary definition for the term “communication networks;” and (5) develop new or modified Reliability Standards to protect the nonprogrammable components of communications networks.

    9 Order No. 791, 145 FERC ¶ 61,160 at P 41.

    10Id.

    7. The Commission also directed NERC to conduct a survey of Cyber Assets that are included or excluded under the new BES Cyber Asset definition and submit an informational filing within one year.11 On February 3, 2015, NERC submitted an informational filing assessing the results of a survey conducted to identify the scope of assets subject to the definition of the term BES Cyber Asset as it is applied in the CIP version 5 Standards.

    11Id. PP 76, 108, 136, 150.

    8. Finally, Order No. 791 directed Commission staff to convene a technical conference to examine the technical issues concerning communication security, remote access, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Risk Management Framework.12 On April 29, 2014, a staff-led technical conference was held pursuant to the Commission's directive. The topics discussed at the technical conference included: (1) The adequacy of the approved CIP version 5 Standards' protections for bulk electric system data being transmitted over data networks; (2) whether additional security controls are needed to protect bulk electric system communications networks, including remote systems access; and (3) the functional differences between the respective methods utilized for the identification, categorization, and specification of appropriate levels of protection for cyber assets using the CIP version 5 Standards as compared with those employed within the NIST Cybersecurity Framework.

    12Id. P 225.

    C. NERC Petition

    9. On February 13, 2015, NERC submitted a petition seeking approval of Reliability Standards CIP-003-6, CIP-004-6, CIP-006-6, CIP-007-6, CIP-009-6, CIP-010-2, and CIP-011-2, as well as an implementation plan,13 associated violation risk factor and violation severity level assignments, proposed new or revised definitions,14 and retirement of Reliability Standards CIP-003-5, CIP-004-5.1, CIP-006-5, CIP-007-5, CIP-009-5, CIP-010-1, and CIP-011-1.15 NERC states that the proposed Reliability Standards are just, reasonable, not unduly discriminatory or preferential, and in the public interest because they satisfy the factors set forth in Order No. 672 that the Commission applies when reviewing a proposed Reliability Standard.16 NERC maintains that the proposed Reliability Standards “improve the cybersecurity protections required by the CIP Reliability Standards[.]” 17

    13 The proposed implementation plan is designed to match the effective dates of the proposed Reliability Standards with the effective dates of the prior versions of those Reliability Standards under the implementation plan for the CIP version 5 Standards.

    14 The six new or revised definitions proposed for inclusion in the NERC Glossary are: (1) BES Cyber Asset; (2) Protected Cyber Asset; (3) Low Impact Electronic Access Point; (4) Low Impact External Routable Connectivity; (5) Removable Media; and (6) Transient Cyber Asset.

    15 The proposed Reliability Standards are available on the Commission's eLibrary document retrieval system in Docket No. RM15-14-000 and on the NERC Web site, www.nerc.com.

    16See NERC Petition at 13 and Exhibit C (citing Order No. 672, FERC Stats. & Regs. ¶ 31,204 at PP 323-335).

    17 NERC Petition at 4.

    10. NERC avers that the proposed CIP Reliability Standards satisfy the Commission directives in Order No. 791. Specifically, NERC states that the proposed Reliability Standards remove the “identify, assess, and correct” language, which represents the Commission's preferred approach to addressing the underlying directive.18 In addition, NERC states that the proposed Reliability Standards address the Commission's directive regarding a lack of specific controls or objective criteria for Low Impact BES Cyber Systems by requiring responsible entities “to implement cybersecurity plans for assets containing Low Impact BES Cyber Systems to meet specific security objectives relating to: (i) Cybersecurity awareness; (ii) physical security controls; (iii) electronic access controls; and (iv) Cyber Security Incident response.” 19

    18Id. at 4, 15.

    19Id. at 5.

    11. With regard to the Commission's directive that NERC develop specific controls to protect transient electronic devices, NERC explains that the proposed Reliability Standards require responsible entities “to implement controls to protect transient devices connected to their high impact and medium impact BES Cyber Systems and associated [Protected Cyber Assets].” 20 In addition, NERC states that the proposed Reliability Standards address the protection of communication networks “by requiring entities to implement security controls for nonprogrammable components of communication networks at Control Centers with high or medium impact BES Cyber Systems.” 21 Finally, NERC explains that it has not proposed a definition of the term “communication network” because the term is not used in the CIP Reliability Standards. Additionally, NERC states that “any proposed definition would need to be sufficiently broad to encompass all components in a communication network as they exist now and in the future.” 22 NERC concludes that the proposed Reliability Standards “meet the ultimate security objective of protecting communication networks (both programmable and nonprogrammable communication network components).” 23

    20Id. at 6.

    21Id. at 8.

    22Id. at 51-52.

    23Id. at 52.

    12. Accordingly, NERC requests that the Commission approve the proposed Reliability Standards, the proposed implementation plan, the associated violation risk factor and violation severity level assignments, and the proposed new and revised definitions. NERC requests an effective date for the Reliability Standards of the later of April 1, 2016 or the first day of the first calendar quarter that is three months after the effective date of the Commission's order approving the proposed Reliability Standards, although NERC proposes that responsible entities will not have to comply with the requirements applicable to Low Impact BES Cyber Systems (CIP-003-6, Requirement R1, Part 1.2 and Requirement R2) until April 1, 2017.

    D. Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

    13. On July 16, 2015, the Commission issued a NOPR proposing to approve Reliability Standards CIP-003-6, CIP-004-6, CIP-006-6, CIP-007-6, CIP-009-6, CIP-010-2 and CIP-011-2 as just, reasonable, not unduly discriminatory or preferential, and in the public interest.24 The NOPR stated that the proposed CIP Reliability Standards appear to improve upon the current Commission-approved CIP Reliability Standards and to address the directives in Order No. 791.

    24 NOPR, 152 FERC ¶ 61,054 (2015).

    14. While proposing to approve the proposed Reliability Standards, the Commission also proposed to direct that NERC modify certain proposed standards or provide additional information supporting its proposal. First, the Commission directed NERC to provide additional information supporting the proposed limitation in Reliability Standard CIP-010-2 to transient electronic devices used at High and Medium Impact BES Cyber Systems. Second, the Commission stated that, while proposed CIP-006-6 would require protections for communication networks among a limited group of bulk electric system Control Centers, the proposed standard does not provide protections for communication network components and data communicated between all bulk electric system Control Centers. Therefore, the Commission proposed to direct that NERC develop modifications to Reliability Standard CIP-006-6 to require physical or logical protections for communication network components between all bulk electric system Control Centers. Third, while the Commission proposed to approve the new or revised definitions for inclusion in the NERC Glossary, it sought comment on the proposed definition for Low Impact External Routable Connectivity. The Commission noted that, depending on the comments received, it may direct NERC to develop modifications to this definition to eliminate possible ambiguities and ensure that BES Cyber Assets receive adequate protection.

    15. In addition, the Commission raised a concern that changes in the bulk electric system cyber threat landscape, identified through recent malware campaigns targeting supply chain vendors, have highlighted a gap in the protections under the CIP Reliability Standards. Therefore, the Commission proposed to direct NERC to develop a new Reliability Standard or modified Reliability Standard to provide security controls for supply chain management for industrial control system hardware, software, and services associated with bulk electric system operations.25

    25Id. P 18.

    16. In response to the NOPR, 41 entities submitted comments. A list of commenters appears in Appendix A. The comments have informed our decision making in this Final Rule.

    II. Discussion

    17. Pursuant to section 215(d)(2) of the FPA, we approve Reliability Standards CIP-003-6, CIP-004-6, CIP-006-6, CIP-007-6, CIP-009-6, CIP-010-2 and CIP-011-2 as just, reasonable, not unduly discriminatory or preferential, and in the public interest. We find that the proposed Reliability Standards address the Commission's directives from Order No. 791 and are an improvement over the current Commission-approved CIP Reliability Standards. Specifically, the CIP Reliability Standards improve upon the existing standards by removing the “identify, assess, and correct” language and addressing the protection of Low Impact BES Cyber Systems. With regard to the directive to create a NERC Glossary definition for the term “communication networks,” we approve NERC's proposal as an equally effective and efficient method to achieve the reliability goal underlying that directive in Order No. 791. We also approve NERC's proposed implementation plan, and violation risk factor and violation severity level assignments. Finally, we approve NERC's proposed new or revised definitions for inclusion in the NERC Glossary, subject to certain modifications, discussed below.

    18. In addition, pursuant to section 215(d)(5) of the FPA, we direct NERC to develop modifications to the CIP Reliability Standards to address our concerns regarding: (1) The need for mandatory protection for transient electronic devices used at Low Impact BES Cyber Systems in a manner that effectively addresses, and is appropriately tailored to address, the risk posed by those assets; and (2) the need for mandatory protection for communication links and data communicated between bulk electric system Control Centers in a manner that reflects the risks posed to bulk electric system reliability. In addition, we direct NERC to modify the definition of Low Impact External Routable Connectivity in order to eliminate ambiguities in the language. Finally, we direct NERC to complete a study of the remote access protections in the CIP Reliability Standards within one year of the implementation of the CIP version 5 Standards for High and Medium Impact BES Cyber Systems.

    19. As noted above, in the NOPR, the Commission proposed to direct that NERC develop requirements on the subject of supply chain management for industrial control system hardware, software, and services. After review of comments on the subject, the Commission scheduled a staff-led technical conference for January 28, 2016. The Commission will determine the appropriate action on this issue after the scheduled technical conference.

    20. Below, we discuss the following matters: (A) Protection of transient electronic devices; (B) protection of bulk electric system communication networks; (C) proposed definitions; and (D) NERC's implementation plan.

    A. Protection of Transient Electronic Devices NERC Petition

    21. In its Petition, NERC states that the revised CIP Reliability Standards satisfy the Commission's directive in Order No. 791 by requiring that applicable entities: (1) Develop plans and implement cybersecurity controls to protect Transient Cyber Assets and Removable Media associated with their High Impact and Medium Impact BES Cyber Systems and associated Protected Cyber Assets; and (2) train their personnel on the risks associated with using Transient Cyber Assets and Removable Media. NERC states that the purpose of the proposed revisions is to prevent unauthorized access to and use of transient electronic devices, mitigate the risk of vulnerabilities associated with unpatched software on transient electronic devices, and mitigate the risk of the introduction of malicious code on transient electronic devices. NERC explains that the standard drafting team determined that the proposed requirements should only apply to transient electronic devices associated with High and Medium Impact BES Cyber Systems, concluding that “the application of the proposed transient devices requirements to transient devices associated with low impact BES Cyber Systems was unnecessary, and likely counterproductive, given the risks low impact BES Cyber Systems present to the Bulk Electric System.” 26

    26 NERC Petition at 34-35.

    22. NERC further explains that the controls required under Attachment 1 to CIP-010-2, Requirement R4 address the following areas: (1) Protections for Transient Cyber Assets managed by responsible entities; (2) protections for Transient Cyber Assets managed by another party; and (3) protections for Removable Media. NERC indicates that these provisions reflect the standard drafting team's recognition that the security controls required for a particular transient electronic device must account for the functionality of that device and whether the responsible entity or a third party manages the device. NERC also states that Transient Cyber Assets and Removable Media have different capabilities because they present different levels of risk to the bulk electric system.27

    27Id. at 38.

    NOPR

    23. In the NOPR, the Commission stated that proposed Reliability Standard CIP-010-2 appears to provide a satisfactory level of security for transient electronic devices used at High and Medium Impact BES Cyber Systems. The Commission noted that the proposed security controls required under proposed CIP-010-2, Requirement R4, taken together, constitute a reasonable approach to address the reliability objectives outlined by the Commission in Order No. 791. Specifically, the Commission stated that proposed security controls outlined in Attachment 1 should ensure that responsible entities apply multiple security controls to provide defense-in-depth protection to transient electronic devices in the High and Medium Impact BES Cyber System environments.28

    28 NOPR, 152 FERC ¶ 61,054 at P 41.

    24. The Commission raised a concern, however, that proposed CIP-010-2 does not provide adequate security controls to address the risks posed by transient electronic devices used at Low Impact BES Cyber Systems, including Low Impact Control Centers, due to the limited applicability of Requirement R4. The Commission stated that this omission may result in a gap in protection for Low Impact BES Cyber Systems where malware inserted at a single Low Impact substation could propagate through a network of many substations without encountering a single security control. The NOPR noted that “Low Impact security controls do not provide for the use of mandatory anti-malware/antivirus protections within the Low Impact facilities, heightening the risk that malware or malicious code could propagate through these systems without being detected.” 29

    29Id. P 42.

    25. The Commission also indicated that the burden of expanding the applicability of Reliability Standard CIP-010-2 to transient electronic devices at Low Impact BES Cyber Systems is not clear from the information in the record, nor is it clear what information and analysis led NERC to conclude that the application of the transient electronic device requirements to Low Impact BES Cyber Systems “was unnecessary.” Therefore, the Commission directed NERC to provide additional information supporting the proposed limitation in Reliability Standard CIP-010-2 to High and Medium Impact BES Cyber Systems, stating that the Commission “may direct NERC to address the potential reliability gap by developing a solution, which could include modifying the applicability section of CIP-010-2, Requirement R4 to include Low Impact BES Cyber Systems, that effectively addresses, and is appropriately tailored to address, the risks posed by transient devices to Low Impact BES Cyber Systems.” 30

    30Id. P 43.

    Comments

    26. While two commenters support the Commission's proposal, most commenters, including NERC, advocate approval of CIP-010-2 without expanding the applicability provision of Requirement R4 to include Low Impact BES Cyber Systems. NERC questions the Commission's assertion that “malware inserted via a USB flash drive at a single Low Impact substation could propagate through a network of many substations without encountering a single security control under NERC's proposal.” 31 In particular, NERC and others commenters assert that the proposed security controls in CIP-003-6 adequately address the potential for propagation of malicious code or other unauthorized access by requiring: (1) All routable protocol communications between low impact assets be controlled through a Low Impact Electronic Access Point; (2) mandatory cyber security awareness activities; (3) physical security controls; (4) electronic access controls; and (5) incident response activities.32 Trade Associations assert that all asset-to-asset routable communications must go through the security control of the Low Impact Electronic Access Point under the proposed controls, other than extremely time sensitive device-to-device coordination.33 Trade Associations and NIPSCO suggest that the impact on reliability in the event of a successful compromise is inherently low.

    31 NERC Comments at 26 (quoting NOPR, 152 FERC ¶ 61,054 at P 42).

    32Id. at 27. See also Trade Associations Comments at 12; Southern Comments at 5-6; Luminant Comments at 2; G&T Cooperatives Comments at 7.

    33 Trade Associations Comments at 12.

    27. NERC, Trade Associations, Arkansas, G&T Cooperatives, and ITC argue that any Commission proposal to expand the protections of CIP-010-2, Requirement R4 to transient electronic devices used at Low Impact BES Cyber Systems would contradict the underlying principles of the risk-based approach that was adopted in the Commission-approved CIP version 5 Standards. Likewise, these commenters argue that the resource burden to develop and implement security controls for low impact transient devices would be substantial. NERC, Consumers Energy, and G&T Cooperatives express concern that any requirements for transient electronic devices used at Low Impact BES Cyber Systems may divert resources from the protection of Medium and High Impact BES Cyber Systems.34

    34 NERC Comments at 24; Consumers Energy Comments at 3-4; G&T Cooperatives Comments at 5.

    28. Trade Associations and Southern assert that developing security controls for low impact transient cyber assets would be difficult given that, under CIP-003-6, responsible entities are not required to identify Low Impact BES Cyber Assets. Trade Associations conclude that additional transient cyber asset protections would need to be at the asset level to avoid creating administrative burdens disproportionate to the risk. Arkansas and G&T Cooperatives claim that the Commission's proposal to modify CIP-010-2 could require the implementation of device level controls and assert that the cost for complying with such regulations would be unprecedented because they would be driven by the number of devices and the number of people interacting with those devices.35

    35 Arkansas Comments at 2-3; G&T Cooperatives Comments at 5.

    29. ITC and NIPSCO state that the lack of specificity in CIP-010-2, Requirement R4 raises concerns with how responsible entities will demonstrate compliance, noting that the methods included are general and non-exclusive such that a responsible entity cannot be expected to know with reasonable confidence whether its plan will be deemed compliant. ITC states that, if the Commission intends to approve Standards that contain such broad latitude, it must also be prepared to accept a wide variety of plans as compliant.

    30. NERC requests that, should the Commission determine that the risk associated with transient electronic devices used at Low Impact BES Cyber Systems requires expanding protections to those devices, it should recognize the varying risk levels presented by Low Impact BES Cyber Systems and the need to focus on higher risk issues. Other commenters, including Arkansas, KCP&L, and G&T Cooperatives, request that the Commission allow the implementation of the low impact controls in CIP-003-6 and the transient device controls in CIP-10-2 before directing further initiatives to expand the scope of the standards. Reclamation suggests that, if the Commission decides to direct NERC to address this potential reliability gap, the transient device and removable media controls for Low Impact BES Cyber Systems should be less stringent than the controls in CIP-010-2 given the facilities with which they are associated. Luminant and Reclamation also request that any new requirements for low impact transient electronic devices be placed in CIP-003-6.

    31. APS and SPP RE generally express support for changes to CIP-010-2, Requirement R4 to address mandatory protection for transient devices used at Low Impact BES Cyber Systems. APS states that extending transient device protection to low impact systems would likely afford some additional security benefits, but notes that there may be cases where these controls would be unduly burdensome. SPP RE states that the burden of extending certain elements of the Attachment 1 requirements to environments containing Low Impact BES Cyber Systems is reasonable, with the benefit far outweighing the cost if the controls are carefully considered with risk and potential burden in mind. SPP RE suggests that the compliance burden could be reduced by allowing Transient Cyber Assets and Removable Media to be readily moved between assets containing only Low Impact BES Cyber Systems without having to re-perform the Attachment 1 requirements between sites. Finally, NIPSCO seeks clarification on how to determine the “manager” of a Transient Cyber Asset under CIP-010-2, Requirement R4, noting that the requirement appears to allow a Transient Cyber Asset to be owned by the responsible entity, but used by a vendor on a day-to-day basis.36

    36 NIPSCO Comments at 9-10.

    Commission Determination

    32. After consideration of the comments received on this issue, we conclude that the adoption of controls for transient devices used at Low Impact BES Cyber Systems, including Low Impact Control Centers, will provide an important enhancement to the security posture of the bulk electric system by reinforcing the defense-in-depth nature of the CIP Reliability Standards at all impact levels. Accordingly, we direct that NERC, pursuant to section 215(d)(5) of the FPA, develop modifications to the CIP Reliability Standards to provide mandatory protection for transient devices used at Low Impact BES Cyber Systems based on the risk posed to bulk electric system reliability. While NERC has flexibility in the manner in which it addresses the Commission's concerns, the proposed modifications should be designed to effectively address the risks posed by transient devices to Low Impact BES Cyber Systems in a manner that is consistent with the risk-based approach reflected in the CIP version 5 Standards.

    33. We are not persuaded by NERC and other commenters that the security controls in CIP-003-6 adequately address the potential for propagation of malicious code or other unauthorized access stemming from transient devices used at Low Impact BES Cyber Systems. CIP-003-6 requires responsible entities, for any Low Impact External Routable Connectivity, to implement a Low Impact Electronic Access Point to “permit only necessary inbound and outbound bi-directional routable protocol access.” In doing so, however, responsible entities may not foresee and configure their devices to limit all unwanted traffic. Firewalls only accept or drop traffic as dictated by a preprogrammed rule set. In other words, if a piece of malicious code were to leverage permissible traffic or protocol patterns, the firewall could not detect a malicious file signature. In short, under this requirement of CIP-003-6, responsible entities have discretion to determine what access and traffic are necessary, which does not provide enough certainty that the protocols used or ports targeted by future, as-yet-unknown malware would result in the firewall rules dropping the malicious traffic.

    34. Second, the firewalls and other security devices installed at Low Impact Electronic Access Points for Low Impact BES Cyber Systems may not be actively monitored. The system security management controls in CIP-007-6 that require logging, alerting, and event review are not mandated for low impact BES Cyber Systems under CIP-003-6. As a result, even if a security device installed at a Low Impact Electronic Access Point successfully logged suspicious network traffic, there is no assurance that a responsible entity would have processes in place to take swift action to prevent malicious code from spreading to other Low Impact BES Cyber Systems.

    35. In addition, we disagree with the assertion raised by some commenters that directing NERC to address the reliability gap created by the limited applicability of CIP-010-2 contradicts the risk-based approach adopted in the CIP version 5 Standards,37 or will result in an unreasonable resource burden or diversion of resources from the protection of Medium and High Impact BES Cyber Systems. Rather, in the NOPR, the Commission noted that one means to address the identified reliability concern would be to modify the applicability section of CIP-010-2, Requirement R4 to include Low Impact BES Cyber Systems. This is not, however, the only means available to address the Commission's concerns. The Commission was clear that any proposal submitted by NERC should be designed to effectively address, in a manner that is “appropriately tailored to address, the risks posed by transient devices to Low Impact BES Cyber Systems.” 38 We intend that NERC's proposed modifications will be designed to address the risk posed by the assets being protected in accordance with the risk-based approach reflected in the CIP version 5 Standards, i.e., the modifications to address Low Impact BES Cyber Systems may be less stringent than the provisions that apply to Medium and High Impact Cyber Systems—commensurate with the risk.

    37See NERC Comments at 24; G&T Cooperatives Comments at 6.

    38 NOPR, 152 FERC ¶ 61,054 at P 43.

    36. We agree with the Trade Associations that controls for low impact transient cyber assets could be adopted at the asset level (i.e., facility or site-level) to avoid overly-burdensome administrative tasks that could be associated with identifying discrete Low Impact BES Cyber Assets.39 While responsible entities are not explicitly required by the CIP standards to maintain a list of discrete Low Impact BES Cyber Assets, entities should be aware of where such assets reside in order to apply the existing protections already reflected in the policies required under CIP-003-6. As noted above, the Commission offered that one possible solution to address the reliability gap could be to modify the applicability section of CIP-010-2, Requirement R4. However, should modifying CIP-010-2 prove overly burdensome as asserted by Arkansas and G&T Cooperatives, NERC may propose an equally effective and efficient solution. For example, we believe it would be reasonable for NERC to consider modifications to CIP-003-6, as suggested by Luminant and Reclamation, since the existing low impact controls reside in that standard.

    39 Trade Associations Comments at 13.

    37. With respect to ITC and NIPSCO's comments regarding potential ambiguity in CIP-010-2, Requirement R4, we reiterate that CIP-010-2, Requirement R4 contains sufficiently clear control objectives to inform responsible entities about the activities that must be performed in order for a transient device program to be deemed compliant. We believe that the flexibility reflected in Requirement R4 will help responsible entities to develop secure and cost effective compliance solutions. To the extent that concerns arise in the implementation process, we encourage responsible entities to work with NERC and the Regional Entities to ensure that responsible entities will have reasonable confidence about compliance expectations. Finally, regarding NIPSCO's request for clarification, we clarify our understanding that the phrase “managed by” as it is used in CIP-010-2, Requirement R4, is intended to distinguish between situations where a responsible entity has complete control over a Transient Cyber Asset as opposed to situations where a third party shares some measure of control, as discussed in the Guidelines and Technical Basis section of CIP-010-2.

    B. Protection of Bulk Electric System Communication Networks NERC Petition

    38. In its Petition, NERC states that the standard drafting team concluded that it need not create a new definition for communication networks because the term “is generally understood to encompass both programmable and nonprogrammable components (i.e., a communication network includes computer peripherals, terminals, and databases as well as communication mediums such as wires).” 40 According to NERC, the revised CIP Reliability Standards contain reasonable controls to secure the types of equipment and components that responsible entities must protect based on the risk they pose to the bulk electric system, as opposed to a specific definition of communication networks. Further, NERC explains that the standard drafting team focused on nonprogrammable communication components at control centers with High or Medium Impact BES Cyber Systems because those locations present a heightened risk to the Bulk-Power System, warranting the increased protections.41

    40 NERC Petition at 52 (citing North American Electric Reliability Corp., 142 FERC ¶ 61,203, at PP 13-14 (2013)).

    41Id. at 48.

    39. NERC states that proposed Reliability Standard CIP-006-6 provides flexibility for responsible entities to implement the physical security measures that best suit their needs and to account for configurations where logical measures are necessary because the entity cannot effectively implement physical access restrictions. According to NERC, responsible entities have the discretion as to the type of physical or logical protections to implement pursuant to Part 1.10 of this Standard, provided that the protections are designed to meet the overall security objective.42

    42Id. at 49-50.

    NOPR

    40. In the NOPR, the Commission indicated that NERC's proposed alternative approach to addressing the Commission's Order No. 791 directive regarding the definition of communication networks adequately addresses part of the underlying concerns set forth in Order No. 791.43 The Commission proposed to accept NERC's explanation that responsible entities must develop controls to secure the nonprogrammable components of communication networks based on the risk they pose to the bulk electric system, rather than develop a specific definition of communication networks to identify assets for protection.

    43 NOPR, 152 FERC ¶ 61,054 at P 53.

    41. However, the Commission also indicated that NERC's proposed solution for the protection of nonprogrammable components of communication networks does not fully meet the intent of the Commission's Order No. 791 directive, because proposed CIP-006-6, Requirement R1, Part 1.10 would only apply to nonprogrammable components of communication networks within the same Electronic Security Perimeter, excluding from protection other programmable and non-programmable communication network components that may exist outside of a discrete Electronic Security Perimeter.44 Therefore, the Commission proposed to direct that NERC develop a modification to proposed Reliability Standard CIP-006-6 “to require responsible entities to implement controls to protect, at a minimum, all communication links and sensitive bulk electric system data communicated between all bulk electric system Control Centers,” including communication between two (or more) Control Centers, but not between a Control Center and non-Control Center facilities such as substations.45 In addition, the Commission sought comments that address “the value achieved if the CIP Standards were to require the incorporation of additional network segmentation controls, connection monitoring, and session termination controls behind responsible entity intermediate systems,” including whether these or other steps to improve remote access protection are needed, and whether the adoption of any additional security controls addressing this topic would provide substantial reliability and security benefits.46

    44Id. P 55.

    45Id. P 59.

    46Id. P 60.

    Comments

    42. NERC and a number of commenters generally agree that inter-Control Center communications play a critical role in maintaining bulk electric system reliability and do not oppose further evaluation of the risks described by the Commission in the NOPR.47 NERC states that timely and accurate communication between Control Centers is important to maintaining situational awareness and reliable bulk electric system operations, and notes that the interception or manipulation of data communicated between Control Centers “could be used to carry out successful cyberattacks against the [bulk electric system].” 48

    47 NERC Comments at 20. See also Comments of IRC, IESO and ITC.

    48 NERC Comments at 20.

    43. However, NERC and other commenters also assert that NERC should take steps to ensure that reliability is not adversely impacted with the adoption of any additional controls.49 SPP RE and EnergySec indicate that latency should not be a concern for protecting Control Center communications. Specifically, SPP RE states that the latency introduced by encryption is typically not an operational issue for inter-Control Center communications, since regular inter-Control Center communications do not require the same millisecond response time as communications between protective relays in substations. In addition, SPP RE states that protections other than encryption are not as effective in protecting sensitive operational data from alteration or replay.

    49 NERC Comments at 20. See also Arkansas Comments at 3-4; APS Comments at 4; EnergySec Comments at 4; IESO Comments at 4.

    44. A number of commenters request that the Commission provide flexibility to the extent that it issues a directive on this topic. NERC, EnergySec, APS, and IESO state that the Commission should allow NERC the opportunity to develop an appropriate and risk informed approach to any new Reliability Standard or requirement, while APS and EnergySec also suggest that NERC be granted the flexibility to determine the placement of any new security controls in the body of standards.50 Trade Associations and Arkansas state that NERC should determine the appropriate controls to implement to meet the Commission's objectives. Luminant, PNM Resources, and Southern suggest that any new standard or requirement should be results-based and not prescriptive, affording some measure of flexibility to responsible entities.

    50 NERC Comments at 20-21; EnergySec Comments at 4; APS Comments at 4; IESO Comments at 4.

    45. Trade Associations, Southern, Wisconsin, and NEI generally agree that protections should be applied to the High and Medium Impact BES Cyber System environment, but oppose extending mandatory protection to the Low Impact Control Center environment without additional study. Trade Associations and PNM also take issue with the blanket application of security controls over all bulk electric system Control Center data and believe that NERC should have the opportunity to determine what data is truly sensitive.

    46. A number of commenters oppose the Commission's proposal to require responsible entities to implement controls to protect all communication links and sensitive bulk electric system data communicated between all bulk electric system Control Centers. NIPSCO and G&T Cooperatives argue that the risks posed by such communication networks do not justify the costs of implementing a new standard and, therefore, the standard should, at a minimum, not apply to Low Impact BES Cyber Systems. NIPSCO opines that the Commission's proposal may cause unintentional consequences since data and communications exchanged between Control Centers is often time-sensitive. SCE suggests that the Commission's proposal is premature and that the risks should be studied before taking further actions. Foundation opposes the Commission's proposal because it objects to the exclusion of secure connections to grid facilities other than Control Centers, stating that the Commission should do more to protect the grid.51

    51 Foundation Comments at 47-48.

    47. Other commenters request clarification of the Commission's proposal. KCP&L, PNM, UTC, TVA, Idaho Power, and NIPSCO seek clarification whether Control Centers owned by multiple, different registered entities would be included in the Commission's proposal. TVA asks whether the Commission's proposal is focused on protecting the data link or the data itself. UTC questions the nature of the reliability gap described in the NOPR given the protections in CIP-005-5 for inbound and outbound communications. In addition, APS and EnergySec seek clarification regarding the term “control center” in the context of adopting controls to protect reliability-related data. APS and EnergySec note that transmission owner SCADA systems do not meet the current definition of control centers despite the fact that these systems contain identical reliability data as the systems operated by reliability coordinators, balancing authorities, and transmission operators. As a result, APS and EnergySec ask that the Commission clarify what constitutes a “control center” for the purposes of communication security.52 Finally, Idaho Power, KCP&L, and UTC seek clarification whether responsible entities would be held individually accountable for implementing the controls adopted under the CIP Standards when there may be overlapping responsibilities associated with the protection of inter-entity control center communication.53 For example, Idaho Power opines that two neighboring responsible entities with control centers that communicate with each other should both be equally responsible for implementing the CIP Standards, but states that it is unclear how compliance would be measured.

    52See APS Comments at 4; EnergySec Comments at 3.

    53 Idaho Power Comments at 2; UTC Comments at 2; KCP&L Comments at 5.

    48. PNM and NIPSCO suggest that, if the NOPR proposal is aimed at protecting intra-control center communications, the Commission should consider modifications to Reliability Standard EOP-008-1. TVA requests that the Commission consider removing the requirement for protecting “all communication links” and focus on the “sensitive bulk electric system data” moving between Control Centers. TVA states that physical and logical protections for communications network components between bulk electric system Control Centers should be limited to only essential communications networks.

    49. With regard to the Commission's question on the potential need for additional remote access protections, NERC and a number of commenters argue that there are not enough data to conclude that the proposed controls for remote access will be ineffective and suggest that the Commission delay consideration of additional remote access protections until after the CIP version 5 remote access provisions are implemented.54 NERC and IRC provide a list of the relevant controls applied to remote access systems as evidence that there are substantial controls already in place to address threats associated with remote access. APS and Arkansas assert that the current Standards and industry-developed guidance provide sufficient tools for securing interactive remote access and, thus, additional controls would not provide significant reliability or security benefits. TVA claims that the current requirement language is too prescriptive because it precludes a registered entity's usage of specific technologies due to prejudices against certain “architectures.” 55

    54 NERC Comments at 21-23. See also Trade Association Comments at 14; KCP&L Comments at 4; Southern Comments at 7; IRC Comments at 6.

    55 TVA Comments at 5.

    50. Commenters supporting the development of additional remote access controls for the CIP Standards contend that the current suite of CIP Standards fails to adequately address specific threats and vulnerabilities. SPP RE and CyberArk note the lack of restrictions on what systems remote users can access after successfully logging on to the intermediate system.56 CyberArk also asserts that there is a lack of protection for remote user credentials after successfully logging onto the intermediate system and a lack of controls to regulate encryption strength and key management. Waterfall states that the proposed controls lack methods to detect and prevent compromised endpoint devices, which, according to Waterfall and SPP RE, presents the opportunity for an attacker to access multiple remote sites from a compromised central site.

    56 SPP RE Comments at 7-8; CyberArk Comments at 1-2.

    51. PNM agrees that some of the controls mentioned by panelists at the April 2014 FERC technical conference may improve reliability and security. However, PNM states that such controls may have only marginal benefits to reliability and security since the increased complexity of these steps would present problems with staff support for such systems.57 AEP asserts that, while additional controls may enhance a defense-in-depth strategy, prescriptive requirements on intermediate systems may create a need for technical feasibility exceptions for situations where security could impede reliability.

    57 PNM Comments at 2.

    Commission Determination

    52. We adopt the NOPR proposal and find that NERC's alternative approach to addressing the Commission's Order No. 791 directive regarding the definition of communication networks adequately addresses part of the underlying concerns set forth in Order No. 791.58 In accepting this alternative approach, we accept NERC's explanation that responsible entities must develop controls to secure the nonprogrammable components of communication networks at Control Centers with High or Medium Impact BES Cyber Systems.

    58 NOPR, 152 FERC ¶ 61,054 at P 53.

    53. As discussed in detail below, however, the Commission concludes that modifications to CIP-006-6 to provide controls to protect, at a minimum, communication links and data communicated between bulk electric system Control Centers are necessary in light of the critical role Control Center communications play in maintaining bulk electric system reliability. Therefore, we adopt the NOPR proposal and direct that NERC, pursuant to section 215(d)(5) of the FPA, develop modifications to the CIP Reliability Standards to require responsible entities to implement controls to protect, at a minimum, communication links and sensitive bulk electric system data communicated between bulk electric system Control Centers in a manner that is appropriately tailored to address the risks posed to the bulk electric system by the assets being protected (i.e., high, medium, or low impact).

    54. NERC and other commenters recognize that inter-Control Center communications play a critical role in maintaining bulk electric system reliability by, among other things, helping to maintain situational awareness and reliable bulk electric system operations through timely and accurate communication between Control Centers.59 We agree with this assessment. In order for certain responsible entities such as reliability coordinators, balancing authorities, and transmission operators to adequately perform their reliability functions, their associated control centers must be capable of receiving and storing a variety of sensitive bulk electric system data from interconnected entities. Accordingly, we find that additional measures to protect both the integrity and availability of sensitive bulk electric system data are warranted.60 We also understand that the attributes of the data managed by responsible entities could require different information protection controls.61 For instance, certain types of reliability data will be sensitive to data manipulation type attacks, while other types of reliability data will be sensitive to eavesdropping type attacks aimed at collecting operational information (such as line and equipment ratings and impedances). NERC should consider the differing attributes of bulk electric system data as it assesses the development of appropriate controls.

    59 NERC Comments at 20.

    60 Protecting the integrity of bulk electric system data involves maintaining and ensuring the accuracy and consistency of inter-Control Center communications. Protecting the availability of bulk electric system data involves ensuring that required data is available when needed for bulk electric system operations.

    61 Moreover, in order for certain responsible entities to adequately perform their Reliability Functions, the associated control centers must be capable of receiving and storing a variety of sensitive data as specified by the IRO and TOP Standards. For instance, pursuant to Reliability Standard TOP-003-3, Requirements R1, R3 and R5, a transmission operator must maintain a documented specification for data and distribute its data specification to entities that have data required by the transmission operator's Operational Planning Analyses, Real-time Monitoring and Real-time Assessments. Entities receiving a data specification must satisfy the obligation of the documented specification.

    55. With regard to NERC's development of modifications responsive to our directive, we agree with NERC and other commenters that NERC should have flexibility in the manner in which it addresses the Commission's directive. Likewise, we find reasonable the principles outlined by NERC that protections for communication links and sensitive bulk electric system data communicated between bulk electric system Control Centers: (1) Should not have an adverse effect on reliability, including the recognition of instances where the introduction of latency could have negative results; (2) should account for the risk levels of assets and information being protected, and require protections that are commensurate with the risks presented; and (3) should be results-based in order to provide flexibility to account for the range of technologies and entities involved in bulk electric system communications.62

    62See NERC Comments at 20-21.

    56. We disagree with the assertion of NIPSCO and G&T Cooperatives that the risk posed by bulk electric system communication networks does not justify the costs of implementing controls. Communications between Control Centers over such networks are fundamental to the operations of the bulk electric system, and the record here does not persuade us that controls for such networks are not available at a reasonable cost (through encryption or otherwise). Nonetheless, we recognize that not all communication network components and data pose the same risk to bulk electric system reliability and may not require the same level of protection. We expect NERC to develop controls that reflect the risk posed by the asset or data being protected, and that can be implemented in a reasonable manner. It is important to recognize that certain entities are already required to exchange necessary real-time and operational planning data through secured networks using a “mutually agreeable security protocol,” regardless of the entity's size or impact level.63 NERC's response to the directives in this Final Rule should identify the scope of sensitive bulk electric system data that must be protected and specify how the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of each type of bulk electric system data should be protected while it is being transmitted or at rest.

    63See Reliability Standards TOP-003-3, Requirement R5 and IRO-010-2, Requirement R3.

    57. With regard to Foundation's argument that the Commission should do more to promote grid security by mandating secure communications between all facilities of the bulk electric system, such as substations, the record in the immediate proceeding does not support such a broad requirement at this time. However, if in the future it becomes evident that such action is warranted, the Commission may revisit this issue.

    58. Several commenters sought clarification whether Control Centers owned by multiple registered entities would be included under the Commission's proposal. We clarify that the scope of the directed modifications apply to Control Center communications from facilities at all impact levels, regardless of ownership. The directed modification should encompass communication links and data for intra-Control Center and inter-Control Center communications.

    59. Idaho Power, KCP&L, and UTC seek clarification whether entities would be held individually accountable for implementing the Standard when there may be overlapping responsibilities. We clarify that responsible entities may be held individually accountable depending upon the security arrangements with their neighbors and functional partners. Many organizations currently use joint and coordinated functional registration agreements to assign accountability for reliability tasks with joint functional obligations.64 These mechanisms could be leveraged to address responsibilities under the CIP Standards. For example, if several registered entities have joint responsibility for a cryptographic key management system used between their respective Control Centers, they should have the prerogative to come to a consensus on which organization administers that particular key management system.

    64See NERC Compliance Public Bulletin #2010-004, available on the NERC Web site at www.NERC.com.

    60. UTC seeks further explanation regarding the nature of the reliability gap described in the NOPR given the protections in CIP-005-5 for inbound and outbound communications. We clarify that the reliability gap addressed in this Final Rule pertains to the lack of mandatory security controls to address how responsible entities should protect sensitive bulk electric system communications and data. As noted above, while responsible entities are required to exchange real-time and operational planning data necessary to operate the bulk electric system using mutually agreeable security protocols, there is no technical specification for how this transfer of information should incorporate mandatory security controls. Although the CIP Standards provide a measure of defense-in-depth for responsible entity information systems, the current security controls primarily focus on boundary protection controls. For instance, CIP-005-5 focuses on access control and malicious code prevention, which requires authentication of the user and ensuring that no malware is included in the communication, but does not provide for security of the actual data while it is being transmitted between Electronic Security Perimeters. Thus, the current CIP Reliability Standards do not adequately address how to protect the transfer of sensitive bulk electric system data between facilities at discrete geographic locations.

    61. With respect to APS and EnergySec's request for clarification regarding the meaning of the term “control center” in the context of adopting controls to protect reliability-related data, we clarify that we are using here the NERC Glossary definition of a Control Center.65 Whether particular facilities meet or do not meet this definition should be determined outside of this rulemaking. However, the proposed modification will apply to Control Centers at all impact levels (high, medium, or low).

    65 The NERC Glossary defines Control Center as “One or more facilities hosting operating personnel that monitor and control the Bulk Electric System (BES) in real-time to perform the reliability tasks, including their associated data centers, of: (1) A Reliability Coordinator, (2) a Balancing Authority, (3) a Transmission Operator for transmission Facilities at two or more locations, or (4) a Generator Operator for generation Facilities at two or more locations.”

    62. Several commenters addressed encryption and latency. Based on the record in this proceeding, it is reasonable to conclude that any lag in communication speed resulting from implementation of protections should only be measureable on the order of milliseconds and, therefore, will not adversely impact Control Center communications. Several commenters raise possible technical implementation difficulties with integrating encryption technologies into their current communications networks. Such technical issues should be considered by the standard drafting team when developing modifications in response to this directive, and may be resolved, e.g., by making certain aspects of the revised CIP Standards eligible for Technical Feasibility Exceptions.

    63. We reject the suggestion of two commenters that any efforts to protect intra-Control Center communications should be considered through modifications in Reliability Standard EOP-008-1. As an initial matter, Reliability Standard EOP-008-1 focuses on backup functionality in the event that primary control center functionality is lost.66 Reliability Standard EOP-008-1 also does not provide security for communication links or data and, therefore, does not provide for the protection of communication links and sensitive bulk electric system data communicated between bulk electric system Control Centers.

    66See http://www.nerc.com/files/eop-008-1.pdf.

    64. Finally, with regard to the NOPR discussion regarding the potential need for additional protections related to remote access,67 we are persuaded by commenters' suggestions that it would be prudent to assess the extent to which the CIP version 5 Standards provide effective controls for remote access before pursuing additional revisions to the CIP Standards.68 Therefore, we direct NERC to conduct a study that assesses the effectiveness of the CIP version 5 remote access controls, the risks posed by remote access-related threats and vulnerabilities, and appropriate mitigating controls for any identified risks. NERC should consult with Commission staff to determine the general contents of the directed report. We direct NERC to submit a report on the above-outlined study within one year of the implementation of the CIP version 5 Standards for High and Medium Impact BES Cyber Systems.

    67See NOPR, 152 FERC ¶ 61,054 at P 60.

    68See NERC Comments at 21-23; Trade Association Comments at 14; KCP&L Comments at 4; Southern Comments at 7; IRC Comments at 6.

    C. Proposed Definitions NERC Petition

    65. In its Petition, NERC proposes the following definition for Low Impact External Routable Connectivity:

    Direct user-initiated interactive access or a direct device-to-device connection to a low impact BES Cyber System(s) from a Cyber Asset outside the asset containing those low impact BES Cyber System(s) via a bidirectional routable protocol connection. Point-to-point communications between intelligent electronic devices that use routable communication protocols for time-sensitive protection or control functions between Transmission station or substation assets containing low impact BES Cyber Systems are excluded from this definition (examples of this communication include, but are not limited to, IEC 61850 GOOSE or vendor proprietary protocols).69

    69 NERC Petition at 28.

    66. NERC explains that the proposed definition describes the scenarios where responsible entities are required to apply Low Impact access controls under Reliability Standard CIP-003-6, Requirement R2 to their Low Impact assets. Specifically, if Low Impact External Routable Connectivity is used, a responsible entity must implement a Low Impact Electronic Access Point to permit only necessary inbound and outbound bidirectional routable protocol access.70

    70Id. at 29.

    NOPR

    67. In the NOPR, the Commission sought comment on the proposed definition for Low Impact External Routable Connectivity. First, the Commission sought comment on the purpose of the meaning of the term “direct” in relation to the phrases “direct user-initiated interactive access” and “direct device-to-device connection” within the proposed definition.71 In addition, the Commission sought comment on the implementation of the “layer 7 application layer break” contained in certain reference diagrams in the Guidelines and Technical Basis section of proposed Reliability Standard CIP-003-6, noting that the guidance provided in the Guidelines and Technical Basis section of the proposed standard may conflict with the plain reading of the term “direct.” 72 The Commission noted a concern that a conflict in the reading of the term “direct” could lead to complications in the implementation of the proposed CIP Reliability Standards, hindering the adoption of effective security controls for Low Impact BES Cyber Systems. The Commission indicated that, depending upon the responses received, the final rule may direct NERC to develop a modification to the definition of Low Impact External Routable Connectivity to eliminate ambiguities.

    71See NOPR, 152 FERC ¶ 61,054 at P 70.

    72See CIP-003-6 Guidelines and Technical Basis Section, Reference Model 6 at p. 39. The layer 7 application layer break concept appears to permit a responsible entity to log into an intermediate application or device to access the Low Impact BES Cyber System or device to avoid implementing Low Impact Electronic Access Point security controls under CIP-003-6, Attachment 1, Section 3.

    Comments

    68. NERC and other commenters do not oppose a modification of the Low Impact External Routable Connectivity definition, so long as it remains consistent with the Guidelines and Technical Basis for section for CIP-003-6.73 NERC, referencing the Guidelines and Technical Basis section of proposed CIP-003-6, explains that the purpose of the term “direct” is to distinguish between the scenarios where an external user or device could electronically access the Low Impact BES Cyber System without a security break (i.e., direct access) from those situations where an external user or device could only access the Low Impact BES Cyber System following a security break (i.e., indirect access).

    73 NERC Comments at 31. See also Trade Associations Comments at 15; Southern Comments at 8.

    69. NERC explains further that Low Impact External Routable Connectivity would exist and a Low Impact Electronic Access Point would be required if an entity's implementation of a layer 7 application layer break does not provide a sufficient security break (i.e., the layer 7 application does not prevent direct access to the Low Impact BES Cyber System).74 Southern states that it believes that the Low Impact External Routable Connectivity definition, when combined with the language in the Guidelines and Technical Basis section for CIP-003-6, is sufficiently clear.

    74 NERC Comments at 30.

    70. SPP RE, EnergySec, and APS recommend that the Commission direct NERC to revise the Low Impact External Routable Connectivity definition because the definition, as drafted, would permit transitive connections through out of scope cyber assets at sites containing Low Impact BES Cyber Systems with no required security controls.75 SPP RE posits that indirect access, through an intervening or intermediate system such as the non-BES Cyber Asset on the same network segment, should also be considered Low Impact External Routable Connectivity because this kind of access would enable “pivot attacks” on low impact networks.

    75 SPP RE Comments at 14-18; EnergySec Comments at 2-3; APS Comments at 7.

    71. SPP RE, EnergySec, TVA, and APS assert that any electronic remote access into a routable network containing BES Cyber Systems should be construed as External Routable Connectivity and protected.76 SPP RE suggests that the layer 7 application layer break language is not well understood by industry, as some responsible entities currently hold the view that a security gateway appliance effectively serves as the layer 7 protocol break eliminating Low Impact External Routable Connectivity. SPP RE asserts that the security gateway appliance acting in this way does not maintain two independent conversations and, as a result, should still be considered as externally routable connected.

    76 SPP RE Comments at 14-18; EnergySec Comments at 2-3; TVA Comments at 1-2; APS Comments at 7.

    72. ITC states that it considers the layer 7 application layer break referenced in Model 6 of the Guidelines and Technical Basis section to be an illustrative example that in no way requires integrity of the data stream down to layer 7 for compliance with CIP-003-6.77 ITC notes that the illustrative example referenced by the Commission is contained within the non-binding Guidelines and Technical basis section, and does not believe that the controlling language of CIP-003-6 requires such a control.

    77 ITC Comments at 10-11.

    Commission Determination

    73. Based on the comments received in response to the NOPR, the Commission concludes that a modification to the Low Impact External Routable Connectivity definition to reflect the commentary in the Guidelines and Technical Basis section of CIP-003-6 is necessary to provide needed clarity to the definition and eliminate ambiguity surrounding the term “direct” as it is used in the proposed definition. Therefore, pursuant to section 215(d)(5) of the FPA, we direct NERC to develop a modification to provide the needed clarity, within one year of the effective date of this Final Rule. We agree with NERC and other commenters that a suitable means to address our concern is to modify the Low Impact External Routable Connectivity definition consistent with the commentary in the Guidelines and Technical Basis section of CIP-003-6.78

    78E.g., NERC Comments at 31; Trade Associations Comments at 15.

    74. As discussed above, NERC clarifies that the purpose of the “direct” language in the Low Impact External Routable Connectivity definition is to distinguish between scenarios where an external user or device could electronically access a Low Impact BES Cyber System without a security break (direct access) from those situations where an external user or device could only access a Low Impact BES Cyber System following a security break (indirect access); therefore, in order for there to be no Low Impact External Routable Connectivity, the security break must be “complete” (i.e., it must prevent allowing access to the Low Impact BES Cyber Systems from the external cyber asset). NERC's clarification on this issue resolves many of the concerns raised by EnergySec, APS, and SPP RE regarding the proposed definition, as a complete security break would not appear to permit transitive connections through one or more out of scope cyber assets to go unprotected under the definition, and would appear to require the assets to maintain “separate conversations” as suggested by SPP RE.

    75. We decline to adopt the recommendations from EnergySec and APS that the Commission direct NERC to modify the standards to utilize the concept of Electronic Security Perimeters for low impact systems and to leverage existing definitions for Electronic Access Point and External Routable Connectivity. The Commission believes that the electronic security protections developed by the standard drafting team for Low Impact BES Cyber Systems will provide sufficient protection to these systems with the modifications that we are directing to the Low Impact External Routable Connectivity definition. However, we may revisit this decision in the future if we determine that CIP-003-6, Requirement R2 and the Low Impact External Routable Connectivity definition provide insufficient electronic access protection for Low Impact BES Cyber Systems.

    D. Implementation Plan NERC Petition

    76. In its Petition, NERC explains that the proposed implementation plan for the revised CIP Reliability Standards is designed to match the effective dates of the proposed Reliability Standards with the effective dates of the prior versions of the related Reliability Standards under the implementation plan of the CIP version 5 Standards. NERC states that the purpose of this approach is to provide regulatory certainty by limiting the time, if any, that the CIP version 5 Standards with the “identify, assess, and correct” language would be effective. Specifically, NERC explains that, pursuant to the CIP version 5 implementation plan, the effective date of each of the CIP version 5 Standards is April 1, 2016, except for the effective date for Requirement R2 of CIP-003-5 (i.e., controls for Low Impact BES Cyber Systems), which is April 1, 2017. NERC explains further that the proposed implementation plan provides that: (1) Each of the proposed reliability Standards shall become effective on the later of April 1, 2016 or the first day of the first calendar quarter that is three months after the effective date of the Commission's order approving the proposed Reliability Standard; and (2) responsible entities will not have to comply with the requirements applicable to Low Impact BES Cyber Systems (CIP-003-6, Requirement R1, Part 1.2 and Requirement R2) until April 1, 2017.79

    79 NERC Petition at 53-54.

    77. NERC also explains that the proposed implementation plan includes effective dates for the new and modified definitions associated with: (1) Transient devices (i.e., BES Cyber Asset, Protected Cyber Asset, Removable Media, and Transient Cyber Asset); and (2) Low Impact controls (i.e., Low Impact Electronic Access Point and Low Impact External Routable Connectivity). Specifically, NERC proposes that: (1) The definitions associated with transient device become effective on the compliance date for Reliability Standard CIP-010-2, Requirement R4; and (2) the definitions addressing the Low Impact controls become enforceable on the compliance date for Reliability Standard CIP-003-6, Requirement R2. Lastly, NERC proposes that the retirement of Reliability Standards CIP-003-5, CIP-004-5.1, CIP-006-5, CIP-007-5, CIP-009-5, CIP-010-1 and CIP-011-1 become effective on the effective date of the proposed Reliability Standards.

    NOPR

    78. In the NOPR, the Commission proposed to approve NERC's implementation plan for the proposed CIP Reliability Standards.80

    80 NOPR, 152 FERC ¶ 61,054 at P 73.

    Comments

    79. A number of commenters request that the Commission act on the proposed revisions to the CIP Standards in a manner that avoids a different implementation date than the CIP version 5 Standards (i.e., April 1, 2016) in order to avoid confusion and unnecessary burdens.81 Trade Associations encourage the Commission to take alternative actions to avoid unnecessary burden if a Final Rule facilitating an April 1, 2016 effective date for the revised CIP Standards is not feasible. Reclamation suggests that the Commission update and extend the standards implementation plan for each of the CIP version 5 Standards to April 1, 2017, except for the effective date for Requirement R2 of CIP-003-5, which Reclamation argues should be updated to April 1, 2018. ITC contends that April 1, 2016 is an unreasonably aggressive compliance deadline and urges the Commission to consider extending the deadline by one year to April 1, 2017.

    81 Trade Associations Comments at 6; SCE Comments at 4-5; Reclamation Comments at 2-3; Wisconsin Comments at 3; Luminant Comments at 2-3; NextEra Comments at 4.

    Commission Determination

    80. The Commission approves NERC's proposed implementation plan. As a result, the proposed CIP Reliability Standards will be effective the first day of the first calendar quarter that is three months after the effective date of the Commission's order approving the proposed Reliability Standard (i.e., July 1, 2016). Responsible entities must comply with the requirements applicable to Low Impact BES Cyber Systems (CIP-003-6, Requirement R1, part 1.2 and Requirement R2) beginning April 1, 2017, consistent with NERC's proposed implementation plan.

    81. We recognize the concerns raised by Trade Associations and other commenters regarding the potential burden of implementing two versions of certain CIP Reliability Standards within a short period of time. The Commission is willing to consider a request to align the implementation dates of certain CIP Reliability Standards or another reasonable alternative approach to addressing potential implementation issues, should NERC or another interested entity submit such a proposal.82

    82 Given the upcoming April 1, 2016 implementation date for the CIP version 5 Standards, NERC or another interested entity may wish to consider seeking expedited action for any request to address potential implementation issues. The Commission would be cognizant, in considering any request, of the need to provide adequate notice of any changes prior to April 1, 2016.

    III. Information Collection Statement

    82. The FERC-725B information collection requirements contained in this Final Rule are subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under section 3507(d) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.83 OMB's regulations require approval of certain information collection requirements imposed by agency rules.84 Upon approval of a collection of information, OMB will assign an OMB control number and expiration date. Respondents subject to the filing requirements of this rule will not be penalized for failing to respond to these collections of information unless the collections of information display a valid OMB control number.

    83 44 U.S.C. 3507(d).

    84 5 CFR 1320.11.

    83. The Commission solicited comments on the need for and purpose of the information contained in the proposed CIP Reliability Standards, including whether the information will have practical utility, the accuracy of the burden estimates, ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected or retained, and any suggested methods for minimizing respondents' burden, including the use of automated information techniques. The Commission received no comments regarding the need for the information collection or the burden estimates associated with the proposed CIP Reliability Standards as described in the NOPR.

    84. Public Reporting Burden: The Commission based its paperwork burden estimates on the changes in paperwork burden presented by the proposed CIP Reliability Standards as compared to the CIP version 5 Standards. The Commission has already addressed the burden of implementing the CIP version 5 Standards.85 As discussed above, the immediate rulemaking addresses four areas of modification to the CIP version 5 Standards: (1) Removal of the “identify, assess, and correct” language from 17 CIP requirements; (2) development of enhanced security controls for low impact assets; (3) development of controls to protect transient electronic devices (e.g., thumb drives and laptop computers); and (4) protection of communications networks. We do not anticipate that the removal of the “identify, assess, and correct” language will impact the reporting burden, as the substantive compliance requirements would remain the same, while NERC indicates that the concept behind the deleted language continues to be implemented within NERC's compliance function. The development of controls to protect transient devices and protection of communication networks (as proposed by NERC) have associated reporting burdens that will affect a limited number of entities, i.e., those with Medium and High Impact BES Cyber Systems. The enhanced security controls for Low Impact assets are likely to impose a reporting burden on a much larger group of entities.

    85See Order No. 791, 145 FERC ¶ 61,160 at PP 226-244.

    85. The NERC Compliance Registry, as of June 2015, identifies approximately 1,435 U.S. entities that are subject to mandatory compliance with Reliability Standards. Of this total, we estimate that 1,363 entities will face an increased paperwork burden under the proposed CIP Reliability Standards, and we estimate that a majority of these entities will have one or more Low Impact assets. In addition, we estimate that approximately 23 percent of the entities have assets that will be subject to Reliability Standards CIP-006-6 and CIP-010-2. Based on these assumptions, we estimate the following reporting burden for entities with Medium and/or High Impact Assets:

    Registered entities Number of
  • entities
  • Total burden hours in year 1 Total burden hours in year 2 Total burden hours in year 3
    Entities subject to CIP-006-6 and CIP-010-2 with Medium and/or High Impact Assets 313 75,120 130,208 130,208 Totals 313 75,120 130,208 130,208

    86. The following shows the annual cost burden for the group with Medium and/or High Impact Assets, based on the burden hours in the table above:

    • Year 1: Entities subject to CIP-006-6 and CIP-010-2 with Medium and/or High Impact Assets: 313 entities × 240 hours/entity * $76/hour = $5,709,120.

    • Years 2 and 3: 313 entities × 416 hours/entity * $76/hour = $9,895,808 per year.

    • The paperwork burden estimate includes costs associated with the initial development of a policy to address requirements relating to transient electronic devices, as well as the ongoing data collection burden. Further, the estimate reflects the assumption that costs incurred in year 1 will pertain to policy development, while costs in years 2 and 3 will reflect the burden associated with maintaining logs and other records to demonstrate ongoing compliance.

    Based on the assumptions, we estimate the following reporting burden for entities with Low Impact Assets:

    Registered entities Number of
  • entities
  • Total burden hours in year 1 Total burden hours in year 2 Total burden hours in year 3
    Entities subject to CIP-003-6 with Low Impact Assets 1,363 163,560 283,504 283,504 Totals 1,363 163,560 283,504 283,504

    87. The following shows the annual cost burden for the group with Low Impact Assets, based on the burden hours in the table above:

    • Year 1: Entities subject to CIP-003-6 with Low Impact Assets: 1,363 entities × 120 hours/entity * $76/hour = $12,430,560.

    • Years 2 and 3: 1,363 entities × 208 hours/entity * $76/hour = $21,546,304 per year.

    • The paperwork burden estimate includes costs associated with the modification of existing policies to address requirements relating to low impact assets, as well as the ongoing data collection burden, as set forth in CIP-003-6, Requirements R1.2 and R2, and Attachment 1. Further, the estimate reflects the assumption that costs incurred in year 1 will pertain to revising existing policies, while costs in years 2 and 3 will reflect the burden associated with maintaining logs and other records to demonstrate ongoing compliance.

    88. The estimated hourly rate of $76 is the average (rounded) loaded cost (wage plus benefits) of legal services ($129.68 per hour), technical employees ($58.17 per hour) and administrative support ($39.12 per hour), based on hourly rates and average benefits data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.86

    86See http://bls.gov/oes/current/naics2_22.htm and http://www.bls.gov/news.release/ecec.nr0.htm. Hourly figures as of June 1, 2015.

    89. Title: Mandatory Reliability Standards, Revised Critical Infrastructure Protection Standards.

    Action: Proposed Collection FERC-725B.

    OMB Control No.: 1902-0248.

    Respondents: Businesses or other for-profit institutions; not-for-profit institutions.

    Frequency of Responses: On Occasion.

    Necessity of the Information: This Final Rule approves the requested modifications to Reliability Standards pertaining to critical infrastructure protection. As discussed above, the Commission approves NERC's proposed revised CIP Reliability Standards pursuant to section 215(d)(2) of the FPA because they improve the currently-effective suite of cyber security CIP Reliability Standards.

    Internal Review: The Commission has reviewed the proposed Reliability Standards and made a determination that its action is necessary to implement section 215 of the FPA.

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

    91. For submitting comments concerning the collection(s) of information and the associated burden estimate(s), please send your comments to the Commission, and to the Office of Management and Budget, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Washington, DC 20503 [Attention: Desk Officer for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, phone: (202) 395-0710, fax: (202) 395-7285]. For security reasons, comments to OMB should be submitted by email to: [email protected]. Comments submitted to OMB should include Docket Number RM15-14-000 and OMB Control Number 1902-0248.

    IV. Regulatory Flexibility Act Analysis

    92. The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (RFA) generally requires a description and analysis of Proposed Rules that will have significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.87 The Small Business Administration's (SBA) Office of Size Standards develops the numerical definition of a small business.88 The SBA revised its size standard for electric utilities (effective January 22, 2014) to a standard based on the number of employees, including affiliates (from the prior standard based on megawatt hour sales).89 Proposed Reliability Standards CIP-003-6, CIP-004-6, CIP-006-6, CIP-007-6, CIP-009-6, CIP-010-2, and CIP-011-2 are expected to impose an additional burden on 1,363 U.S. entities 90 (reliability coordinators, generator operators, generator owners, interchange coordinators or authorities, transmission operators, balancing authorities, transmission owners, and certain distribution providers).

    87 5 U.S.C. 601-12.

    88 13 CFR 121.101.

    89 SBA Final Rule on “Small Business Size Standards: Utilities,” 78 FR 77343 (Dec. 23, 2013).

    90 Public utilities may fall under one of several different categories, each with a size threshold based on the company's number of employees, including affiliates, the parent company, and subsidiaries. For the analysis in this NOPR, we are using a 500 employee threshold for each affected entity to conduct a comprehensive analysis.

    93. Of the 1,363 affected entities discussed above, we estimate that 444 entities are small entities. We estimate that 399 of these 444 small entities do not own BES Cyber Assets or BES Cyber Systems that are classified as Medium or High Impact and, therefore, will only be affected by the proposed modifications to Reliability Standard CIP-003-6. As discussed above, proposed Reliability Standard CIP-003-6 enhances reliability by providing criteria against which NERC and the Commission can evaluate the sufficiency of an entity's protections for Low Impact BES Cyber Assets. We estimate that each of the 399 small entities to whom the proposed modifications to Reliability Standard CIP-003-6 applies will incur one-time costs of approximately $149,358 per entity to implement this standard, in addition to the ongoing paperwork burden reflected in the Information Collection Statement (a total of $40,736 per entity over Years 1-3), giving a total one-time cost of $190,094 per entity. We do not consider the estimated one-time costs for these 399 small entities a significant economic impact.

    94. In addition, we estimate that 14 small entities own Medium Impact substations and that 31 small transmission operators own Medium or High impact control centers. These 45 small entities represent 10.1 percent of the 444 affected small entities. We estimate that each of these 45 small entities may experience an economic impact of $50,000 per entity in the first year of initial implementation to meet proposed Reliability Standard CIP-010-2 and $30,000 in ongoing annual costs.91 In addition, those 45 small entities will have paperwork burden (reflected in the Information Collection Statement) of $81,472 per entity over Years 1-3. Therefore, we estimate that each of these 45 small entities will incur a total of $191,472 in costs over the first three years. We conclude that 10.1 percent of the total 444 affected small entities does not represent a substantial number in terms of the total number of regulated small entities.

    91 Estimated annual cost for year 2 and forward.

    95. Based on the above analysis, the Commission certifies that the proposed Reliability Standards will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. Accordingly, no regulatory flexibility analysis is required.

    V. Environmental Analysis

    96. The Commission is required to prepare an Environmental Assessment or an Environmental Impact Statement for any action that may have a significant adverse effect on the human environment.92 The Commission has categorically excluded certain actions from this requirement as not having a significant effect on the human environment. Included in the exclusion are rules that are clarifying, corrective, or procedural or that do not substantially change the effect of the regulations being amended.93 The actions proposed herein fall within this categorical exclusion in the Commission's regulations.

    92Regulations Implementing the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, Order No. 486, FERC Stats. & Regs. ¶ 30,783 (1987).

    93 18 CFR 380.4(a)(2)(ii).

    VI. Effective Date and Congressional Notification

    97. This Final Rule is effective March 31, 2016. The Commission has determined, with the concurrence of the Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs of OMB, that this rule is a “major rule” as defined in section 351 of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996. This Final Rule is being submitted to the Senate, House, and Government Accountability Office.

    VII. Document Availability

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

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

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

    By the Commission.

    Issued: January 21, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    Note:

    the following Appendix will not appear in the Code of Federal Regulations.

    Appendix Commenters Abbreviation Commenter AEP American Electric Power Service Corporation. ACS Applied Control Solutions, LLC. APS Arizona Public Service Company. Arkansas Arkansas Electric Cooperative. BPA Bonneville Power Administration. CEA Canadian Electricity Association. Consumers Energy Consumers Energy Company. CyberArk CyberArk. EnergySec Energy Sector Security Consortium, Inc. Ericsson Ericsson. Foundation Foundation for Resilient Societies. G&T Cooperatives Associated Electric Cooperative, Inc., Basin Electric Power Cooperative, and Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, Inc. Gridwise Gridwise Alliance. Idaho Power Idaho Power Company. Indegy Indegy. IESO Independent Electricity System Operator. IRC ISO/RTO Council. ISO New England ISO New England Inc. ITC ITC Companies. Isologic Isologic, LLC. KCP&L Kansas City Power & Light Company and KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company. Luminant Luminant Generation Company, LLC. NEMA National Electrical Manufacturers Association. NERC North American Electric Reliability Corporation. NextEra NextEra Energy, Inc. NIPSCO Northern Indiana Public Service Co. NWPPA Northwest Public Power Association. Peak Peak Reliability. PNM PNM Resources. Reclamation Department of Interior Bureau of Reclamation. SIA Security Industry Association. SCE Southern California Edison Company. Southern Southern Company Services. SPP RE Southwest Power Pool Regional Entity. SWP California Department of Water Resources State Water Project. TVA Tennessee Valley Authority. Trade Associations Edison Electric Institute, American Public Power Association, National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, Electric Power Supply Association, Transmission Access Policy Study Group, and Large Public Power Council. UTC Utilities Telecom Council. Waterfall Waterfall Security Solutions, Ltd. Wisconsin Wisconsin Electric Power Company. Weis Joe Weis.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01505 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 117 [Docket No. USCG-2015-1124] Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Upper Mississippi River, St. Paul, MN AGENCY:

    Coast Guard, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice of deviation from drawbridge regulation.

    SUMMARY:

    The Coast Guard has issued a temporary deviation from the operating schedule that governs the Chicago and Northwestern Railroad Drawbridge across the Mississippi River, mile 839.2, at St. Paul, Minnesota. The deviation is necessary to allow the bridge owner time to perform preventive maintenance that is essential to the continued safe operation of the drawbridge, and is scheduled in the winter when there is less impact on navigation. This deviation allows the bridge to be closed to navigation.

    DATES:

    This deviation is effective without actual notice from January 26, 2016 until 11:59 p.m., February 6, 2016. For the purposes of enforcement, actual notice will be used from 12:01 a.m., January 18, 2016 until 11:59 p.m., February 6, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    The docket for this deviation (USCG-2015-1124) is available at http://www.regulations.gov. Type the docket number in the “SEARCH” box and click “SEARCH.” Click on Open Docket Folder on the line associated with this deviation.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    If you have questions on this temporary deviation, call or email Eric A. Washburn, Bridge Administrator, Western Rivers, Coast Guard; telephone 314-269-2378, email [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Union Pacific Railroad requested a temporary deviation for the Chicago and Northwestern Railroad Drawbridge, across the Upper Mississippi River, mile 839.2, at St. Paul, Minnesota to be closed to navigation from 12:01 a.m., January 18, 2016 until 11:59 p.m., January 23, 2016 and from 12:01 a.m., February 1, 2016 until 11:59 p.m., February 6, 2016 for a total of twelve days for scheduled maintenance and for replacement of the liftspan counter weight wire ropes on the bridge. This deviation is scheduled during the winter months causing the least impact on navigation under the bridge.

    The Chicago and Northwestern Railroad Drawbridge currently operates in accordance with 33 CFR 117.671(b), which states the general requirement that the drawbridge shall open on signal except from December 15 through the last day of February drawbridge shall open on signal if at least 12 hours notice is given.

    There are no alternate routes for vessels transiting this section of the Upper Mississippi River. The bridge cannot open in case of emergency.

    The Chicago and Northwestern Railroad Drawbridge provides a vertical clearance of 25.1 feet above normal pool in the closed-to-navigation position. Navigation on the waterway consists primarily of commercial tows and recreational watercraft and will not be significantly impacted. This temporary deviation has been coordinated with waterway users. No objections were received.

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

    Dated: January 20, 2016. Eric A. Washburn, Bridge Administrator, Western Rivers.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01444 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-04-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES 42 CFR Part 34 [Docket No. CDC-2015-0045] RIN 0920-AA28 Medical Examination of Aliens—Revisions to Medical Screening Process AGENCY:

    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), is issuing this final rule (FR) to amend its regulations governing medical examinations that aliens must undergo before they may be admitted to the United States. Based on public comment received, HHS/CDC did not make changes from the NPRM published on June 23, 2015. Accordingly, this FR will: Revise the definition of communicable disease of public health significance by removing chancroid, granuloma inguinale, and lymphogranuloma venereum as inadmissible health-related conditions for aliens seeking admission to the United States; update the notification of the health-related grounds of inadmissibility to include proof of vaccinations to align with existing requirements established by the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA); revise the definitions and evaluation criteria for mental disorders, drug abuse and drug addiction; clarify and revise the evaluation requirements for tuberculosis; clarify and revise the process for the HHS/CDC-appointed medical review board that convenes to reexamine the determination of a Class A medical condition based on an appeal; and update the titles and designations of federal agencies within the text of the regulation.

    DATES:

    This rule is effective March 28, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ashley A. Marrone, J.D., Division of Global Migration and Quarantine, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1600 Clifton Road NE., MS E-03, Atlanta, Georgia 30329; telephone 1-404-498-1600.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Preamble to this FR is organized as follows:

    I. Public Participation II. Background a. Legal Authority b. Legislative and Regulatory History III. Summary of the 2008 Interim Final Rule (IFR) and the 2015 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) Requirements IV. Summary and Response to Public Comment a. 2008 IFR b. 2015 NPRM V. Alternatives Considered VI. Required Regulatory Analyses a. Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 b. The Regulatory Flexibility Act c. The Paperwork Reduction Act d. National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) e. Executive Order 12988: Civil Justice Reform f. Executive Order 13132: Federalism g. The Plain Language Act of 2010 VII. References I. Public Participation

    On October 6, 2008, HHS/CDC published an interim final rule (IFR) (73 FR 58047) to amend its regulations that govern medical examinations that aliens must undergo before they are admitted to the United States. HHS/CDC amended the definition of “communicable disease of public health significance” by adding (1) quarantinable diseases designated by Presidential Executive Order, and (2) those diseases that meet the criteria of a public health emergency of international concern which require notification to the World Health Organization (WHO) under the revised International Health Regulations (IHR) of 2005 (http://www.who.int/ihr/en/). These amendments to the definition of communicable disease of public health significance permitted a more flexible, risk-based approach to the medical examination, based on medical and epidemiologic factors. The IFR also updated the screening requirements for tuberculosis to be consistent with current medical knowledge and practice. The public was invited to comment on these amendments; the comment period ended December 5, 2008. On October 20, 2008, HHS/CDC published correcting amendments (73 FR 62210) that corrected an omission in the IFR. This document clarified that an alien of any age in the United States who applies for adjustment of status to permanent resident shall not be required to have a chest x-ray examination unless their tuberculin skin test, or an equivalent test that shows an immune response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis, is positive. HHS/CDC received three comments to the IFR, two comments from the public and one comment from a professional organization. A summary of those comments and a response to those comments are found at Section IV, below.

    On June 23, 2015, HHS/CDC published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) (80 FR 35899) that proposed to amend its regulations to (1) revise the definition of communicable disease of public health significance by removing chancroid, granuloma inguinale, and lymphogranuloma venereum as inadmissible health-related conditions for aliens seeking admission to the United States; (2) update the notification of the health-related grounds of inadmissibility to include proof of vaccinations to align with existing requirements established by the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) (8 U.S.C.A. 1101 et seq.); (3) revise the definitions and evaluation criteria for mental disorders, drug abuse and drug addiction; (4) clarify and revise the evaluation requirements for tuberculosis; (5) clarify and revise the process for the HHS/CDC-appointed medical review board that convenes to reexamine the determination of a Class A medical condition based on an appeal; and (6) update the titles and designations of federal agencies within the text of the regulation. Specifically, HHS/CDC sought comment on:

    1. Whether infectious Hansen's disease (previously referred to in regulation as infectious leprosy), infectious syphilis and/or gonorrhea should be removed from the definition of communicable disease of public health significance;

    2. Whether the definition of communicable disease of public health significance and the scope of the medical examination should be revised as proposed in this regulation;

    3. Whether the statutory requirement that aliens demonstrate proof of vaccinations should be incorporated into the regulations as a notifiable medical condition. To further clarify this question, HHS/CDC did not request comment on the statutory language itself as HHS/CDC does not have the authority to alter statutory language. Rather, we were interested in comment on the advisability of incorporating statutory language into regulations;

    4. Whether the requirement that immigrants demonstrate proof of vaccination against vaccine-preventable diseases recommended by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) should be limited to only those vaccines for which a public health need exists at the time of immigration or adjustment of status. CDC has previously published criteria for determining whether a public health need exists at the time of immigration or adjustment of status. See 74 FR 58634 (Nov. 13, 2009). HHS/CDC was not seeking comment on the criteria, but rather on the incorporation of this standard into the regulations;

    5. Whether the definitions and evaluation criteria for mental disorders, drug abuse and drug addiction should be revised as proposed in this regulation;

    6. Whether the requirements for evaluating the presence of tuberculosis in alien applicants should be clarified and revised as proposed in this regulation; and

    7. Whether the process for convening a medical review board and reexamination of an alien by a medical review board should be revised as proposed in this regulation.

    HHS/CDC received three public comments on the 2008 IFR and six comments on the 2015 NPRM, from individuals and associations. A summary of those comments and responses to those comments are found at Section IV, below. II. Background A. Legal Authority

    HHS/CDC is amending the regulation under the authority of 42 U.S.C. 252 and 8 U.S.C. 1182 and 1222.

    B. Legislative and Regulatory History

    Beginning in 1952, the language of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) mandated that, among other grounds for inadmissibility, aliens “who are afflicted with any dangerous contagious disease” are ineligible to receive a visa and therefore are excluded from admission into the United States. In 1990, Congress amended the INA by revising the classes of excludable aliens to provide that an alien who is determined (in accordance with regulation prescribed by the Secretary of Health and Human Services) to have a communicable disease of public health significance shall be excludable from the United States. Immigration Act of 1990, Public Law 101-649, section 601, 104 Stat. 4978 January 23, 1990; INA section 212(a)(1)(A)(i), 8 U.S.C. 1182(a)(1)(A)(i) (effective June 1, 1991). At the time of the 1990 INA amendments, the following specific communicable illnesses rendered an alien inadmissible: Active tuberculosis, infectious syphilis, gonorrhea, infectious leprosy, chancroid, lymphogranuloma venereum, granuloma inguinale, and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. HHS/CDC subsequently published a proposed rule that would have removed from the list all diseases except for active tuberculosis. 56 FR 2484 (January 23, 1991). Based on the review and consideration of public comments received on this proposal, HHS published an interim final rule retaining all communicable diseases on the list and committed its initial proposal for further study. See 56 FR 25000 (May 31, 1991). On October 6, 2008, HHS/CDC published an Interim Final Rule (IFR) announcing a revised definition of communicable disease of public health significance and revised scope of the medical examination in 42 CFR part 34. This IFR addressed concerns regarding emerging and reemerging diseases in alien populations who are bound for the United States. See 73 FR 58047 and 73 FR 62210.

    With the 2008 revision to 42 CFR part 34, the definition of communicable disease of public health significance was modified to include two disease categories: (1) Quarantinable diseases designated by Presidential Executive Order; and (2) a communicable disease that may pose a public health emergency of international concern in accordance with the International Health Regulations (IHR) of 2005, provided the disease meets specified criteria in addition to the list of specific illnesses. Specific illnesses remaining as a communicable disease of public health significance were active tuberculosis, infectious syphilis, gonorrhea, infectious Hansen's disease (previously referred to in regulation as infectious leprosy), chancroid, lymphogranuloma venereum, granuloma inguinale, and HIV infection.

    In response to a 2008 amendment to the INA, on July 2, 2009, HHS/CDC published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) (74 FR 31798), which proposed two regulatory changes: (1) The removal of HIV infection from the definition of communicable disease of public health significance; and (2) removal of references to serologic testing for HIV from the scope of examinations. On November 2, 2009, HHS/CDC published a final rule, effective on January 4, 2010 (74 FR 56547), that removed HIV infection and testing for HIV infection from part 34 regulations.

    III. Summary of the Final Rule

    HHS/CDC identified the need for this rulemaking through an annual retrospective review of its regulations. Executive Order 13563 “Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review” requires Federal agencies to periodically review existing regulations to eliminate those regulations that are obsolete, unnecessary, burdensome, or counterproductive or revise regulations to increase their effectiveness, efficiency, and flexibility.

    Through this final rule, HHS/CDC will revise 42 CFR part 34 to reflect modern terminology and plain language commonly used in medicine and science by public health partners in the medical examination of aliens. Likewise, we are revising part 34 to include text that accurately reflects the statutory and administrative changes that have occurred within the Federal Government regarding agencies and/or departments responsible for this process. These revisions will ensure regulations that govern the medical examination of aliens are based upon accepted contemporary scientific principles as well as current medical practices.

    The following is a section-by-section summary of the changes to part 34:

    Section 34.1 Applicability

    HHS/CDC is replacing the acronym “INS” within 34.1(c) with “DHS” to best reflect the administrative changes that have occurred within the Federal Government regarding agencies and/or departments responsible for the medical examination of aliens.

    Section 34.2 Definitions

    In this final rule, HHS/CDC is revising the definitions of: CDC, Communicable disease of public health significance, Civil Surgeon, Class A medical notification, Class B medical notification, Director, Drug abuse, Drug addiction, Medical notification, Medical hold document, Medical officer, Mental disorder and Physical disorder.

    Additionally, HHS/CDC is adding definitions for DHS and HHS and removing the definition of INS.

    Section 34.2(a) CDC

    The definition of CDC is updated to reflect the current official title of the Agency: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Health and Human Services. In doing so, we removed “Public Health Services” from the definition.

    Section 34.2(b) Communicable Disease of Public Health Significance

    This provision now defines communicable disease of public health significance as both a specific list of diseases and categories of diseases for which all aliens are inadmissible to the United States. This final rule removes three uncommon bacterial infections associated with genital ulcer disease: Chancroid, granuloma inguinale, and lymphogranuloma venereum, from the specific list of communicable disease of public health significance as provided for in 42 CFR 34.2(b).

    Section 34.2(c) Civil Surgeon

    HHS/CDC has removed the specific language of “District Director” and “INS” from the definition of civil surgeon to align with the specific language of the definition of civil surgeon as provided for in Department of Homeland Security (DHS) regulations in 8 CFR part 232. HHS/CDC is also removing “with not less than 4 years' professional experience” from the definition of civil surgeon. Through complimentary regulations promulgated by DHS at 8 CFR part 232, the requirement of 4 years' professional experience for civil surgeons will remain in effect. This change removes a redundancy found in HHS/CDC regulation and does not affect a substantive change in policy. HHS/CDC will continue to consult with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)/United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) as needed, regarding recommendations for civil surgeon requirements. Therefore, the definition of civil surgeon means a physician designated by DHS to conduct medical examinations of aliens in the United States who are applying for adjustment of status to permanent residence or who are required by DHS to have a medical examination.

    Section 34.2(d) Class A Medical Notification

    HHS/CDC is amending the definition of Class A medical notification by incorporating statutory language requiring documentary proof of vaccination. This requirement is provided by section 341 of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (IIRIRA) which amended Section 212 of the INA. Part 34 is updated to explicitly include the requirement for proof of vaccination as previously specified in the IIRIRA. See Public Law 104-208, Div. C, 110 Stat. 3009-546. Lack of proof of vaccination will result in the issuance of a Class A medical notification. This additional language will not change current practices, but simply reflects updated statutory language.

    The definition also includes the vaccination exemption specifically provided in Section 212 of the INA for an adopted child who is 10 years of age or younger. This exemption is applicable if, prior to the admission of the child, an adoptive or prospective adoptive parent, who has sponsored the child for admission as an immediate relative, has executed an affidavit stating that the parent is aware of the vaccination requirement and will ensure that the child will be vaccinated within 30 days of the child's admission, or at the earliest time that is medically appropriate. Execution of this affidavit will prevent a Class A medical notification from being generated for lack of proof of vaccination. This additional language does not change current practices, but reflects updated statutory language.

    Section 34.2(f) Director

    The final rule updates the definition of Director to reflect the current official title of the CDC Director, as well as his/her delegation authorities.

    Section 34.2(g) DHS

    We are adding DHS to the definitions in order to best reflect the administrative changes that have occurred within the Federal Government regarding agencies and/or departments responsible for the medical examination of aliens.

    Section 34.2(h) Drug Abuse and Section 34.2(i) Drug Addiction

    HHS/CDC is revising the definitions of drug abuse and drug addiction to align with the definitions of “substance use disorders” and “substance-induced disorders,” provided by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders (DSM) published by the American Psychiatric Association (25). The DSM is the medical standard for the diagnosis of mental disorders and substance-related disorders and provides current diagnostic criteria based on the latest available evidence.

    Section 34.2(k) Medical Hold Document

    This final rule updates the definition of Medical hold document by replacing “INS” with “DHS”, replacing “Public Health Service” with “HHS/CDC” and replacing “quarantine inspector” with “quarantine officer.”

    Section 34.2(l) Medical Notification

    The final rule amends the definition of medical notification by adding proof of vaccination requirements as already provided by section 341 of the IIRIRA which amended Section 212 of the INA. This amendment updates part 34 to include the requirement for proof of vaccination that is currently specified in statute in the IIRIRA and for those ACIP-recommended vaccinations for which HHS/CDC determines, by applying criteria published in the Federal Register, a public health need exists at the time of immigration or adjustment of status. This is not a substantive change to the regulation, as it will not affect current practice.

    Based on this update, medical notification, according to the INA, means a medical examination document issued to a consular authority or DHS by a medical examiner that includes the following additional language: “(2) Documentation of having received vaccination against “vaccine-preventable diseases” for an alien who seeks admission as an immigrant, or who seeks adjustment of status to one lawfully admitted for permanent residence, which shall include at least the following diseases: Mumps, measles, rubella, polio, tetanus and diphtheria toxoids, pertussis, Haemophilus influenza type B and hepatitis B, and any other vaccinations against vaccine-preventable diseases recommended by the ACIP for which HHS/CDC determines, by applying criteria published in the Federal Register, there is a public health need at the time of immigration or adjustment of status.”

    Section 34.2(m) Medical Officer

    The final rule removes “of the Public Health Service Commissioned Corps” from the definition of medical officer to reflect that a medical officer for these purposes is not required to be a member of the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps.

    Section 34.2(n) Mental Disorder and 34.2(p) Physical Disorder

    The final rule clarifies mental disorder as a currently accepted psychiatric diagnosis, as defined by the most recent edition of the DSM published by the American Psychiatric Association (17) or in another authoritative source as approved by the Director. This revision adds “most recent” to qualify the version of the DSM referenced in this definition and clarifies the intent of HHS/CDC that such diagnoses align with current science and medical practice. This update also allows for the possibility of other authoritative sources to be used in the future based on the most current medical science and in the event that the DSM is no longer the accepted authoritative source for determining a psychiatric diagnosis.

    The final rule defines physical disorder to mean a currently accepted medical diagnosis, as defined by the most recent edition of the Manual of the International Classification of Diseases, Injuries, and Causes of Death (ICD) published by the World Health Organization (26) or in another authoritative source as approved by the Director. HHS/CDC is adding “most recent version” to qualify the version of the ICD referenced in this definition and to be consistent with the current Section 212 of the INA. HHS/CDC also allows for the possibility of other authoritative sources to be used in the future based on the most current medical science and in the event that the ICD is no longer the accepted authoritative source for determining a physical diagnosis.

    c. Section 34.3 Scope of Examinations

    This section applies to those aliens who are required to undergo a medical examination for U.S. immigration purposes. The scope of the examination outlines those matters that relate to inadmissible health-related conditions and was revised in 2008 through an interim final rule. The 2008 interim final rule provided specific screening and testing requirements for those diseases that meet the current definition of communicable disease of public health significance in § 34.2(b) of 42 CFR part 34. This final rule further updates this section to incorporate statutory language requiring documentation for vaccine-preventable disease and HHS/CDC's understanding that ACIP vaccine recommendations should only be applied in an immigration context when a public health need exists.

    In 2009, HHS/CDC published a final notice in the Federal Register, adopting proposed criteria that HHS/CDC intended to use to determine which vaccines recommended by the ACIP for the general U.S. population should be required for immigrants seeking admission into the United States or seeking adjustment of status to that of an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence based on public health needs (74 FR 58634). These criteria became effective on December 14, 2009. Since then, HHS/CDC has relied on such criteria to determine which vaccines aliens must receive as part of the immigration medical screening process.

    The 2015 NPRM proposed to formally incorporate a reference to this criteria into this final rule. HHS/CDC did not receive public comment in opposition of the incorporation. Therefore, under this final rule, HHS/CDC has modified the regulatory text to reflect reference to these criteria where appropriate. We note that if there is a future need for HHS/CDC to reconsider these established criteria, HHS/CDC will solicit comments through publication in the Federal Register. In subsection (a)(2)(i), we have also inserted the word “current” in front of “physical or mental disorder” as stated in section 212 of INA.

    Specific Proposed Revisions to Section 34.3(a)

    The final rule revised § 34.3(a)(2) to include proof of vaccination requirements as provided by section 341 of IIRIRA of 1996 which amended Section 212 of the INA.

    Specific Proposed Revisions to Section 34.3(e)

    The final rule amends § 34.3(e)(1) to clarify the scope of examination requirements that apply to anyone who is required by DHS to have a medical examination for the purpose of determining their admissibility. The final rule adds § 34.3(e)(1)(v) “Applicants required by DHS to have a medical examination in connection with the determination of their admissibility into the United States.”

    The final rule includes the following changes to provide consistency in the required evaluation for tuberculosis: Replace all references to “chest x-ray” in § 34.3(e) with “chest radiograph”; clarify that § 34.3(e)(3)(ii) applies to aliens in the United States; and to remove the specific size of chest radiograph provided in § 34.3(e)(5). These changes reflect current medical terminology and technical practice.

    The final rule amends § 34.3(e)(2)(iii) by removing “and HIV” to correct the typographical error in the current rule language and reflect that testing for HIV is no longer required. The requirement for serologic testing for syphilis will remain and the final rule includes language to allow the Director to test for other communicable diseases of public health significance (as defined) through technical instructions.

    The final rule amends §§ 34.3(e)(3)(i) and 34.3(e)(3)(ii) to reflect the scope of currently available medical tests. The final rule replaces “positive tuberculin reaction” with “positive test of immune response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis antigens” in §§ 34.3(e)(3)(i) and 34.3(e)(3)(ii).

    To allow HHS/CDC discretion to apply appropriate medical screening procedures, the final rule amends §§ 34.3(e)(3)(iii) and 34.3(e)(3)(iv) regarding application of tests of immune response by adding “as determined by the Director.”

    To allow for additional testing in medically appropriate circumstances, the final rule revises § 34.3(e)(4) by removing “subject to the chest radiograph requirement, and for whom the radiograph shows an abnormality suggestive of tuberculosis disease,” replaces “shall” with “may,” and adds “based on medical evaluation.” Thus, in the final rule, this revision reads: “All applicants may be required to undergo additional testing for tuberculosis based on the results of the medical evaluation.”

    To reflect current practice and INA statutory language, the final rule amends § 34.3(b)(2) by adding “or other relevant records” to ensure that all appropriate available medical documentation may be considered. Thus, in the final rule, this revision reads: “For the examining physician to reach a determination or conclusion about the presence or absence of a physical or mental abnormality, disease, or disability, the scope of the examination shall include any laboratory or additional studies that are deemed necessary, either as a result of the physical examination or pertinent information elicited from the alien's medical history or other relevant records.”

    The final rule includes language under § 34.3(f), transmission of records, to ensure that electronic submissions may be acceptable as provided by the Director. Finally, the final rule amends § 34.3(g)(4) by replacing “excludable” with “inadmissible” in § 34.3(g)(4) to reflect modern terminology.

    d. Section 34.4 Medical Notifications

    The final rule revises § 34.4(b)(1)(ii) to include proof of vaccination requirements as provided by section 341 of the IIRIRA of 1996 which amended Section 212 of the INA and references criteria established by HHS/CDC and published in the Federal Register to determine which vaccines recommended by the ACIP will be required for U.S. immigration.

    In addition, the final rule adds specific language regarding the exemption of vaccination requirements for an adopted child as provided in Section 212 of the INA.

    e. Section 38.7 Medical and Other Care; Death

    Under this section, the final rule replaces “INS” with “DHS” and replaces “Public Health Services” with “HHS” to reflect modern agency titles and appropriate authorities relating to this provision.

    f. Section 34.8 Reexamination; Convening of Review Boards; Expert Witnesses, Reports

    The final rule revises this section to clarify the reexamination and review board's process and improve the expediency of the process. The revisions include removing the requirement that one medical officer must be a board-certified psychiatrist in cases where the alien's mental health is a basis for inadmissibility. The requirement for a board-certified psychiatrist is replaced with a requirement that the review board consist of at least one medical officer who is experienced in the diagnosis and treatment of the physical or mental disorder, or substance-related disorder for which the medical notification was made. Additionally, the final rule adds failure to present documented proof of having been vaccinated against vaccine preventable diseases as a basis for reexamination by the review board and adds clarifying language that the reexamination may be conducted, at the board's discretion, based on the written record.

    IV. Response to Public Comments A. Summary of Public Comments to the 2008 IFR

    On October 6, 2008, HHS/CDC published an interim final rule (IFR) (73 FR 58047) to amend its regulations that govern medical examinations that aliens must undergo before they are admitted to the United States. HHS/CDC amended the definition of “communicable disease of public health significance” by adding (1) quarantinable diseases designated by Presidential Executive Order, and (2) those diseases that meet the criteria of a public health emergency of international concern which require notification to the World Health Organization (WHO) under the International Health Regulations of 2005. These amendments to the definition of “communicable disease of public health significance” permitted a more flexible, risk-based approach to the medical examination, based on medical and epidemiologic factors. The IFR also updated the screening requirements for tuberculosis to be consistent with current medical knowledge and practice. The public was invited to comment on these amendments; the comment period ended December 5, 2008. On October 20, 2008, HHS/CDC published correcting amendments (73 FR 62210) that corrected an omission in the IFR. The correcting amendments clarified that an alien of any age in the United States who applies for adjustment of status to permanent resident shall not be required to have a chest x-ray examination unless their tuberculin skin test, or an equivalent test that shows an immune response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis, is positive. HHS/CDC received three comments to the IFR, two comments from the public and one comment from a professional organization. A summary of those comments and a response to those comments are found below.

    One commenter urged HHS/CDC to remove HIV infection from the definition of communicable disease of public health significance, stating that HIV has specific methods of transmission and that the likelihood that an HIV positive individuals would present an unusual risk of disease is extremely low.

    Response: HHS/CDC thanks the commenter for this comment and notes that HHS/CDC removed HIV infection from the definition of communicable disease of public health significance by rulemaking in 2009. No changes were made to the final rule based on this comment.

    A second commenter expressed concern that HHS/CDC was creating a double standard; an alien in the United States with a newly identified disease would not be found inadmissible, but an alien overseas with the same disease would be found inadmissible. With this double standard, aliens overseas would be encouraged to avoid overseas medical examinations and find ways to illegally enter the United States. The commenter suggested that the best way to avoid this situation would be to apply the same standards to medical examinations performed overseas and those performed in the United States. Finally, the commenter suggested that part 34 should be revised to clearly differentiate between overseas medical examinations and those in the United States.

    Response: HHS/CDC notes that the final rule does make a distinction between the medical examinations performed for those aliens outside of the United States and those already in the United States applying for adjustment of status to that of a lawful permanent resident. The distinction applies only to additional screening requirements for certain communicable diseases of public health significance where these diseases exist and for which importation into the United States would pose a threat as determined by the risk-based approach criteria. We reemphasize that both groups are required to undergo medical screening and the requirements for both groups are outlined in the regulation. No changes were made to the final rule based on this comment.

    A third commenter expressed concern that the interim final rule did not include a provision to ensure that the public and the panel physicians are adequately notified of new and emerging diseases which could render individuals inadmissible and subject to an additional medical assessment. The commenter urged HHS to work closely with the Department of State to promptly notify the public of any health emergency or changes or additions to medical examinations through consular Web sites. Finally, the commenter was disappointed that HHS did not remove HIV infection as an inadmissible condition in this rulemaking.

    Response: HHS/CDC notes that the regulation does contain a provision that all applicable additional requirements for medical screening and testing will be posted at the following Internet address: http://www.cdc.gov/immigrantrefugeehealth/exams/ti/index.html. HHS/CDC also works closely with the Department of State to ensure that all changes or additions to the medical examination are communicated to affected consular posts, panel physicians, and to the public. Finally, HHS/CDC removed HIV infection from the definition of communicable disease of public health significance by rulemaking in 2009. No changes were made to the final rule based on this comment.

    B. Summary of Public Comments to the 2015 NPRM

    HHS/CDC received 6 comments from the public on this NPRM. A summary of the comments is provided here.

    One commenter protested the proposal to remove the three STIs from the list of communicable diseases of public health significance. The commenter also disagreed with HHS/CDC's proposal to incorporate a more flexible, risk-based approach, based on medical and epidemiologic factors. The comment points to recent outbreaks of Ebola, Bird and Swine Flu and states that screening should be more vigilant, and that not having stricter screening risks an outbreak.

    Response: HHS/CDC thanks the commenter for this comment and notes that in the 2008 IFR, HHS/CDC amended the definition of communicable disease of public health significance by adding (1) quarantinable diseases designated by Presidential Executive Order, and (2) those diseases that meet the criteria of a public health emergency of international concern which require notification to the World Health Organization (WHO) under the International Health Regulations of 2005 which allows for screening of diseases in these categories which includes viral hemorrhagic fevers (such as Ebola) and flu that can cause a pandemic (including Bird and Swine variants). The addition of these categories of diseases along with the risk based approach allows HHS/CDC the ability to rapidly respond to unanticipated emerging or re-emerging outbreaks of disease and provides the framework to be able to screen and test individuals during disease outbreaks. HHS/CDC is confident that these changes will improve the ability of the United States to prevent the introduction and spread of infectious diseases, and to protect public health of the United States. No changes were made to the final rule based on this comment.

    One commenter expressed concern about any disease coming off the list as these immigrants may be a public ward, and stated that individuals with HIV should not be allowed to immigrate to the United States. The commenter also noted that there was no comment period when HIV was removed from the list. The commenter also asks why unvaccinated children under ten should be allowed to immigrate to the United States. Finally, the commenter states that Ebola should be added to the list and that CDC should start thinking about other diseases to add to the definition of communicable diseases of public health significance.

    Response: HHS/CDC thanks the commenter for this comment and notes that HHS/CDC removed HIV infection from the definition of communicable disease of public health significance by rulemaking in 2009. As part of this process, HHS/CDC issued a notice of proposed rulemaking which received over 20,000 comments; the majority of which were in favor of removing HIV infection from the list.

    Under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), children under 10 years of age who are adopted by U.S. citizens are exempt from vaccination requirements prior to entry into the United States. These children must receive vaccinations in the United States within thirty days upon arrival. The above exception and requirements are based on statutory language provided in the INA and cannot be changed by HHS/CDC regulations. This exception does not apply to any other children seeking an immigrant visa or adjustment of status to lawful permanent resident in the United States.

    In the 2008 IFR, HHS/CDC amended the definition of “communicable disease of public health significance” by adding (1) quarantinable diseases designated by Presidential Executive Order, and (2) those diseases that meet the criteria of a public health emergency of international concern which require notification to the World Health Organization (WHO) under the International Health Regulations of 2005. This allows for screening of diseases in these categories to be conducted during outbreaks and responses. Ebola and other hemorrhagic viral fevers are included in the current list of quarantinable diseases, and therefore are considered in the list of communicable diseases of public health significance. No changes were made to the final rule based on this comment.

    One commenter stated that removing the STIs from the list of communicable diseases of public health significance may lead to decreased use of effective measures to prevent infection. This commenter stated that it is currently “too risky to the public good to downgrade the urgency of these types of preventable diseases.” The commenter continued by stating that there have been countless occurrences of “plagues taking over nations and killing off much of the populations,” and the commenter states that “there are many diseases that have not even been introduced yet and it is important to continue the current procedure in order to ensure nothing new `plagues' the nation.”

    The same commenter stated that all aliens should be required to receive the same vaccinations that Americans receive. Additionally, the commenter submits that all immigrants should be revaccinated, as proof of vaccination from an immigrant's home country may not be reliable. The commenter also provides two standards for vaccination. They are as follows:

    (1) If immigrating to the United States for economic reasons, the alien's standard of health should be comparable to the average resident of the United States.

    (2) if immigrating to the United States for medical treatment otherwise unobtainable in the alien's home country, the alien must be insured to prevent burden to the U.S. taxpayer.

    Response: HHS/CDC notes that, according to the analysis provided in the notice of proposed rulemaking, the incidence and prevalence of these STIs is declining globally and so the potential for introduction and spread of these diseases to the U.S. population is considered to be low. By removing the three STIs which no longer pose a threat to public health, the medical examination will be able to focus on the other communicable diseases which are considered more serious risks to the United States. Removing these 3 STIs does not mean that persons will not be treated for these infections if the infections are found during the medical examination. Removing these 3 STIs means that persons who have these infections are no longer considered inadmissible to the United States. HHS/CDC has incorporated into its regulations the vaccination requirements that are included in statutory language provided in the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Please see the relevant text of the INA at http://www.uscis.gov/iframe/ilink/docView/SLB/HTML/SLB/act.html. No changes were made to the final rule based on these comments.

    Two commenters raised similar concerns regarding a statement made by HHS/CDC in the preamble of the 2015 NPRM regarding the inconclusive correlation between male circumcision and HIV prevention. Both commenters expressed disdain over the ethical, legal and methodological issues surrounding male circumcision as it relates to communicable disease. One commenter stated that some men from traditionally non-circumcising cultures [e.g. Hispanic/Latino communities] may read the NPRM and feel compelled to have themselves, and male children, circumcised in the belief that it may help them gain admittance to the U.S. Finally, both commenters concluded that any reference to male circumcision should be removed from the regulation.

    Response: HHS/CDC thanks these commenters for their input. We note first that today's final rule does not contain any reference to male circumcision. Second, we clarify that whether a male is circumcised does not—and will not under today's final rule—have an effect on his medical examination or eventual admission into the United States. In the preamble language of the June 2015 NPRM, HHS/CDC stated: “. . . HIV prevention strategies such as male circumcision may be playing a role, although definitive studies of this effect are still pending.” This statement was made in addition to several other hypotheses which supported the underlying fact that “[D]eclining rates of these [STIs] are likely due to a variety of factors.” Other factors considered and listed in the NPRM included: Improved living conditions, better sanitation (e.g., availability of soap and water), condom use, educational efforts, improved recognition by physicians and treatment based on clinical presentation of sexually transmitted infections, treatment of sexual partners, as well as increased antibiotic usage for treatment of other unrelated conditions. No changes were made to the final rule based on these comments.

    One commenter opposed the removal of the requirement that a board certified psychiatrist must be part of the review board for an alien seeking an appeal of mental disorder with associated harmful behavior. The commenter also supports updating the definitions of drug abuse, drug addiction and mental disorder to be made using current DSM standards and criteria. The commenter also indicated concerns about the policy behind the immigration medical examination and its likely discriminatory impact on those aliens with mental illness. The commenter further noted that the terms “drug abuser” and “drug addict” are obsolete and stigmatizing terms that require replacement in order to meet current scientific understanding of substance use disorders.

    Response: HHS/CDC thanks the commenter for the comments and support for updating the definitions of drug abuse, drug addiction and mental disorder to reflect current DSM standards and criteria. As acknowledged by the commenter, changes to the medical examination as it relates to mental illness, including revising the terms “drug abuser” and “drug addict,” would require statutory language changes to the INA.

    Regarding the comment about the requirement for a board certified psychiatrist to be a member of the review board, HHS/CDC notes that nothing in the regulations prevent the review board from including a board certified psychiatrist in mental disorder cases. However, the change in the regulation allows for another qualified mental health specialist to be on the review board in the event a board certified psychiatrist is not readily available. This allows for the review board process to proceed without any unnecessary delay that may affect the alien's immigration process. No changes were made to the final rule based on this comment.

    V. Alternatives Considered

    This rulemaking is the result of HHS/CDC's annual retrospective regulatory review. Most of the amendments are administrative and will result in minor changes to current guidelines for overseas medical examinations required of persons seeking permanent entry to the United States. Therefore, alternatives to these administrative updates were not considered.

    However, as we stated in the proposed rule, when considering updates to the definition of communicable disease of public health significance, HHS/CDC looked at all of the specific diseases listed in the definition. As stated previously in the Preamble, in this rulemaking, HHS/CDC is revising the definition of communicable disease of public health significance by removing these three uncommon health conditions: Chancroid; granuloma inguinale; and lymphogranuloma venereum.

    We have decided not to remove infectious Hansen's disease (leprosy), gonorrhea, and/or infectious syphilis from the definition at this time. Our decision is based on epidemiological principles and current medical practice to assess these three diseases (infectious Hansen's disease, gonorrhea, and infectious syphilis). We believe that the medical examination provides the opportunity to screen for and treat these diseases, and, when identified in immigrants, provides a public health benefit to the United States as well as a health benefit to the individual. Further, while infection with these three diseases initially renders an alien inadmissible to the United States, treatment is available upon identification, and once appropriately treated, aliens with these conditions are no longer inadmissible. Continued screening for these three diseases during the medical examination provides an opportunity to identify and treat disease in alien populations and thus provide a measure of public health protection to the general U.S. population. HHS/CDC will continue to assess each of these remaining diseases as a communicable disease of public health significance through further scientific review.

    VI. Required Regulatory Analyses A. Executive Orders 12866 and 13563

    HHS/CDC has examined the impacts of the proposed rule under Executive Order 12866, Regulatory Planning and Review (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and Executive Order 13563, Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011) (1, 2). Both Executive Orders direct agencies to evaluate any rule prior to promulgation to determine the regulatory impact in terms of costs and benefits to United States populations and businesses. Further, together, the two Executive Orders set the following requirements: Quantify costs and benefits where the new regulation creates a change in current practice; define qualitative costs and benefits; choose approaches that maximize benefits; support regulations that protect public health and safety; and minimize the impact of regulation. HHS/CDC has analyzed the rule as required by these Executive Orders and has determined that it is consistent with the principles set forth in the Executive Orders and the Regulatory Flexibility Act, as amended by the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA) and that the rule will create minimal impact (3, 4).

    This rule is not being treated as a significant regulatory action as defined by Executive Order 12866. As such, it has not been reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

    There are two main impacts of this rule. First, we have updated the current regulation to reflect modern terminology, plain language, and current practice. Because there is no change in the baseline from these updates, no costs can be associated with these administrative updates to align the regulation with current practice.

    Second, we have removed three sexually transmitted bacterial infections, chancroid, granuloma inguinale and lymphogranuloma venereum, from the definition of communicable disease of public health significance (5). In doing this, aliens seeking permanent entry to the United States (immigrants, refugees and asylees) will no longer be examined for these diseases during the mandatory medical examinations that are part of the process of admission to the United States. The impact of dropping this portion of the examination is likely to be minimal. On the positive side, the physicians administering the exam will be able to focus on other areas of patient health. On the negative side, there is the potential for a negligible increase in the numbers of disease cases entering the United States. However, as we explain subsequently, this impact is likely to be small. Further, the costs associated with the current disease burden in the United States are also very limited. Therefore, the potential introduction of a very small number of cases will not change the current cost structure associated with the current disease burden.

    As discussed in detail below, the three bacterial infections (chancroid, granuloma inguinale and lymphogranuloma venereum), are transmitted through sexual contact, have never been common in the United States and over the past two decades are observed to be increasingly rare throughout the world. Of the three conditions, only laboratory-diagnosed cases of chancroid are reportable in the United States, and since 2005 fewer than 30 chancroid cases annually were reported to CDC from the U.S. states and territories (6-23). While some U.S. cities (7) keep records of cases of granuloma inguinale and lymphogranuloma venereum, neither condition is included on the list of diseases reported to the CDC by clinicians and public health departments (6). Online searches and a few available publications indicate that both conditions most typically occur in tropical and impoverished settings (i.e., with limited access to water, hygiene); and both conditions have become increasingly uncommon over time. A review of the literature published during the past five years identified only a handful of case reports on granuloma inguinale, and the vast majority of these cases were cases outside the United States (12-17). Sporadic small outbreaks of lymphogranuloma venereum have occurred over the past 10 years in Europe and the United States (18-20). The numbers of lymphogranuloma venereum cases are small, have been almost exclusively among men who have sex with men, and numbers are not systematically collected for country populations (18-20).

    When HHS/CDC originally attempted to estimate the disease impact to calculate the cost associated with removing these three diseases, we tried to examine the disease rates in the regions or countries of origin of aliens seeking entry to the United States. In the most recent report from DHS, the Annual Yearbook of Immigration Statistics, DHS reports on the regions and countries of origin of aliens (24). Unfortunately, we have been unable to find disease data that correlates with DHS population data for region of origination of aliens (24). Data on chancroid, granuloma inguinale and lymphogranuloma venereum are not systematically collected by any country outside of the United States either by specific countries or regions listed by DHS for aliens, or from the World Health Organization (WHO) (8, 22, 23). Ultimately, we were unable to correlate the originating regions of aliens entering the United States permanently (immigrants, refugees, and asylees) with the rates of the three diseases in the countries of origin.

    Potential for onward transmission of these infections to the U.S. population is deemed to be extremely low. While we do not have country or region-specific rates for these diseases, our review of the literature supports the supposition that the potential introduction of additional cases into the United States by aliens is likely to have a negligible impact on the U.S. population. These primarily tropical infections can be prevented through improved personal hygiene (11) and protected sex (use of a condom) (12). New infections can be effectively treated and cured with a short, uncomplicated course of antibiotic therapy.

    Economic analysis and cost results. HHS/CDC has determined that the costs associated with chancroid, granuloma inguinale and lymphogranuloma venereum are currently very low. Given the pattern of diminishing caseloads reported in the literature and available data (6-21), HHS/CDC projects that future costs will remain low. A more detailed analysis as required by E.O. 12866 and 13563 can be found in the docket for this NPRM. A summary follows below.

    Summary. There is no international disease incidence data available for chancroid, granuloma inguinale or lymphogranuloma venereum. There is some data available for numbers of cases of chancroid observed in the United States over a number of years (6) and DHS also provides data regarding the numbers of legal foreign residents in the United States (24). In the full analysis we used the chancroid data to estimate a range of costs to treat chancroid in the United States (6) at the highest and lowest caseloads observed. An estimated component for granuloma inguinale and lymphogranuloma venereum was added by assumption because of lack of either domestic or international data. The costs were then prorated to reflect the foreign population residing in the United States using DHS data (24).

    Cost estimates were derived for three alternatives titled Low, High, and Extreme. The Low and High alternatives were based on the lowest (most recent) and highest reported caseloads of chancroid (6). The Extreme alternative is six times the highest rate of chancroid ever reported in the United States. Finally, often chancroid, granuloma inguinale, and lymphogranuloma venereum are co-morbid with other STIs, e.g., HIV, syphilis, or gonorrhea (6, 8, 21). Therefore costs are estimated to both treat cases with or without co-morbidity.

    The results of the analysis are reported in Table 1. Because of a decreasing trend in reported cases, it is conservative to estimate the annualized burden of these diseases based on past reporting (i.e. the number of cases observed in the future are likely to continue decreasing). Further, it was assumed that all cases are detected and treated within the first year after arrival. As a result of these assumptions, monetized costs were unaffected by the choice of discount rate.

    The results are not economically significant, i.e. more than $100 million of costs and benefits in a single year.

    Table 1—Annual Costs of Chancroid, Granuloma Inguinale, and Lymphogranuloma Venereum in Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs): LOW, HIGH, and EXTREMELY HIGH Caseload Alternatives, in 2013 Dollars Alternatives Notes: (1) Per-case cost $263.51. (2) Assumes LPRs are 0.4% of total population LOW (less than 1 case a year) HIGH EXTREMELY HIGH. LPR Total Annual Costs 50% comorbidity $18 $2,122 $12,731. LPR Total Annual Costs NO comorbidity $33 $3,858 $23,147.

    Estimated benefits of this rule. The benefits to this rule are also qualitative. Aliens as well as the panel physicians and civil surgeons inherently benefit from having current, up-to-date regulations with modern terminology that reflects modern practice and plain language. The physicians administering the exam will be able to devote more time and training to other, more common and/or more serious health issues. The proposed changes do not impose any additional costs on aliens, panel physicians, or civil surgeons.

    Comparison of costs and benefits. Given the potential impact of the rulemaking, we conclude that the benefits of the rule justify any costs. See Tables 2 and 3 below.

    Table 2—Summary of the Quantified and Non-Quantified Benefits and Costs for Updates to the Current Regulation That Reflect Modern Terminology, Plain Language, and Current Practice Category Primary
  • estimate
  • Minimum
  • estimate
  • Maximum
  • estimate
  • Source
  • citation
  • (RIA,
  • preamble, etc.)
  • BENEFITS Monetized benefits $0 (7%) $0 (7%) $0 (7%) RIA. 0 (3%) 0 (3%) 0 (3%) 0 (0%) 0 (0%) 0 (0%) Annualized quantified, but unmonetized, benefits None N/A N/A RIA. Qualitative (unquantified benefits) Aliens as well as the panel physicians and civil surgeons inherently benefit from having current, up-to-date regulations with modern terminology that reflects modern practice and plain language. RIA. COSTS Annualized monetized costs (discount rate in parenthesis).a $0 (7%)
  • 0 (3%)
  • 0 (0%)
  • $0 (7%)
  • 0 (3%)
  • 0 (0%)
  • $0 (7%)
  • 0 (3%)
  • 0 (0%)
  • RIA.
    Annualized quantified, but unmonetized, costs None N/A N/A RIA. Qualitative (unquantified) costs None RIA.
    Table 3—Summary of the Quantified and Non-Quantified Benefits and Costs Removing Chancroid, Granuloma Inguinale, and Lymphogranuloma Venereum From the Definition of Communicable Disease of Public Health Significance Category Primary
  • estimate
  • Minimum
  • estimate
  • Maximum
  • estimate
  • Source
  • citation
  • (RIA, preamble, etc.)
  • BENEFITS Monetized benefits $0 (7%) $0 (7%) $0 (7%) RIA. 0 (3%) 0 (3%) 0 (3%) 0 (0%) 0 (0%) 0 (0%) Annualized quantified, but unmonetized, benefits None N/A N/A RIA. Qualitative (unquantified benefits) The physicians administering the exam will be able to devote more time and training to other, more common and/or more serious health issues. RIA. COSTS Annualized monetized costs (discount rate in parenthesis).ab $3,858 (7%)
  • 3,858 (3%)
  • 3,858 (0%)
  • $3,858 (7%)
  • 3,858 (3%)
  • 18 (0%)
  • $3,858 (7%)
  • 3,858 (3%)
  • 23,147 (0%)
  • RIA.
    Annualized quantified, but unmonetized, costs None N/A N/A RIA. Qualitative (unquantified) costs None RIA. a All costs of the rule are annual. b It was assumed that all cases occur within one year of arrival. Further, given the decreasing trend in reported cases in the United States, these estimates are likely to be conservative. As a result of these assumptions, the results do not change as a function of the discount rate.
    B. The Regulatory Flexibility Act

    Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act, as amended by the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA), agencies are required to analyze regulatory options to minimize significant economic impact of a rule on small businesses, small governmental units, and small not-for-profit organizations. We have analyzed the costs and benefits of the final rule, as required by Executive Order 12866, and a preliminary regulatory flexibility analysis that examines the potential economic effects of this rule on small entities, as required by the Regulatory Flexibility Act. Based on the cost benefit analysis, we expect the rule to have little or no economic impact on small entities.

    C. The Paperwork Reduction Act

    The Paperwork Reduction Act applies to the data collection requirements found in 42 CFR part 34. The U.S. Department of State is responsible for providing forms to panel physicians, and the Department of Homeland Security is responsible for providing forms to civil surgeons to document the medical examination and screening information for aliens. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approved this data collection under OMB Control No. 1405-0113, which will expire on September 30, 2017. We note also that the medical examination form that civil surgeons use is the I-693 and the OMB control number provided on the I-693 is 1615-0033 (expiration date 3/31/2017).

    D. National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

    HHS/CDC has determined that the amendments to 42 CFR part 34 will not have a significant impact on the human environment.

    E. Executive Order 12988: Civil Justice Reform

    HHS/CDC has reviewed this rule under Executive Order 12988 on Civil Justice Reform and determines that this final rule meets the standard in the Executive Order.

    F. Executive Order 13132: Federalism

    Under Executive Order 13132, if the rule would limit or preempt State authorities, then a federalism analysis is required. The agency must consult with State and local officials to determine whether the rule would have a substantial direct effect on State or local Governments, as well as whether it would either preempt State law or impose a substantial direct cost of compliance on them.

    HHS/CDC has determined that this rule will not have sufficient federalism implications to warrant the preparation of a federalism summary impact statement.

    G. The Plain Language Act of 2010

    Under 63 FR 31883 (June 10, 1998), Executive Departments and Agencies are required to use plain language in all proposed and final rules. HHS/CDC has attempted to use plain language in this rulemaking to make our intentions and rationale clear. We received no public comment regarding plain language.

    VII. References 1. The President. Presidential documents. Executive Order 12866 of September 30, 1993: Regulatory Planning and Review. Federal Register. Monday, October 4, 1993;58(190). http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/executive-orders/pdf/12866.pdf. Accessed September 2015. 2. The President. Presidential documents. Executive Order 13563 of January 18, 2011: Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review. Federal Register. Friday, January 21, 2011; 76(14). http://www.thefederalregister.org/fdsys/pkg/FR-2011-01-21/pdf/2011-1385.pdf. Accessed September 2015. 3. U.S. Small Business Administration. Regulatory Flexibility Act. http://www.sba.gov/advocacy/823. Accessed September 2015. 4. Summary of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act. 2 U.S.C. 1501 et seq. (1995). http://www2.epa.gov/laws-regulations/summary-unfunded-mandates-reform-act. Accessed September 2015. 5. Tom Lantos and Henry Hyde United States Global Leadership Against HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria Reauthorization Act of 2008, Public Law 110-293, section 305, 122 Stat. 2963 (July 30, 2008). 6. CDC. CDC WONDER: Sexually Transmitted Disease Morbidity, 1984-2008. Available from: http://wonder.cdc.gov/std-v2008.html. Accessed September 2015. 7. New York State Department of Health. Bureau of Sexually Transmitted Disease Prevention and Epidemiology. STD Statistical Abstract 2008. http://www.health.state.ny.us/statistics/diseases/communicable/std/abstracts/docs/2008.pdf. Accessed September 2015. 8. Steen, R. (2001). Eradicating chancroid. Bulletin of the World Health Organization 2001. 79: 818-826. 9. Plummer, FA et al. (1983). Epidemiology of chancroid and Haemophilus ducreyi in Nairobi, Kenya. The Lancet. 2(8362): 1293-1295. 10. Hawkes S. et al. (1995) Asymptomatic carriage of Haemophilus ducreyi confirmed by the polymerase chain reaction. Genitourinary Medicine. 71 (4): 224-227. 11. O'Farrell, N. (1993) Soap and water prophylaxis for limiting genital ulcer disease and HIV-1 infection in men in sub-Saharan Africa. Genitourinary Medicine. 69 (4): 297-303. 12. O'Farrell, N., & Moi, H. (2010) European guideline for the management of donovanosis, 2010. International Journal of STD & AIDS. 21:609-610. 13. Richens, J. (2006) Donovanosis (Granuloma Inguinale). Sexually Transmitted Infections. 82(Suppl IV):iv21-iv22. 14. Miller, P. Donovanosis: control or eradication? (2001) Office for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health. 15. Vorvick, LJ., & Storck, S. (2009). Granuloma inguinale (Donovanosis). Medline Plus. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000636.htm. Accessed September 2015. 16. Bowden FJ, on behalf of the National Donovanosis Eradication Advisory Committee. Donovanosis in Australia: going, going. . . . Sex Transm Infect 2005. 81:365-366. 17. CDC. Treatment of Sexually Transmitted Diseases. Diseases characterized by genital ulcers—Granuloma inguinale (Donovanosis) ( ). 2011. Available from: http://www.cdc.gov/std/treatment/2010/genital-ulcers.htm. Accessed September 2015. 18. CDC. Treatment of Sexually Transmitted Diseases. Diseases characterized by genital ulcers—Lymphogranuloma Venereum. 2011. Available from: http://www.cdc.gov/std/treatment/2010/genital-ulcers.htm. Accessed September 2015. 19. Martin-Iguacel, R., Llibre, J.M., Nielsen, H., Heras, E., Matas, L., Lugo, R., Clotet, B., Siera, G. (2010) Lymphogranuloma venereum proctocolitis: a silent endemic disease in men who have sex with men in industrialized countries. European Journal of Clinical Microbial Infectious Disease. 29:917-925. 20. Blank, S., Schillinger, JA., Harbatkin, D. (2005) Comment: Lymphogranuloma venereum in the industrialized world. The Lancet. 365: 1607-08. 21. Johnson, LF., Coetzee, DJ., & Dorrington, RE. (2005). Sentinel surveillance of sexually transmitted infections in South Africa: a review. Sexually Transmitted Infections. 81: 287-293. 22. WHO, Global incidence and incidence of selected curable sexually transmitted infections 2001. 2001. Available from: http://www.who.int/hiv/pub/sti/en/who_hiv_aids_2001.02.pdf. Accessed September 2015. 23. WHO, Global incidence and incidence of four curable sexually transmitted infections (STIs): New estimates from WHO. 2009. 24. United States. Department of Homeland Security. Yearbook of Immigration Statistics: 2010. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Office of Immigration Statistics, 2011. 25. American Psychiatric Association: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition, Arlington, VA, American Psychiatric Association, 2013. 26. International Classification of Diseases (ICD), Tenth Revision, World Health Organization. List of Subjects in 42 CFR Part 34

    Aliens, Health care, Medical examination, Passports and visas, Public health, Scope of examination.

    For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Health and Human Services revises 42 CFR part 34 to read as follows:

    PART 34—MEDICAL EXAMINATION OF ALIENS Sec. 34.1 Applicability. 34.2 Definitions. 34.3 Scope of examinations. 34.4 Medical notifications. 34.5 Postponement of medical examination. 34.6 Applicability of Foreign Quarantine Regulations. 34.7 Medical and other care; death. 34.8 Reexamination; convening of review boards; expert witnesses; reports. Authority:

    42 U.S.C. 252; 8 U.S.C. 1182 and 1222.

    § 34.1 Applicability.

    The provisions of this part shall apply to the medical examination of:

    (a) Aliens applying for a visa at an embassy or consulate of the United States;

    (b) Aliens arriving in the United States;

    (c) Aliens required by DHS to have a medical examination in connection with the determination of their admissibility into the United States; and

    (d) Aliens applying for adjustment of status.

    § 34.2 Definitions.

    As used in this part, terms shall have the following meanings:

    (a) CDC. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Health and Human Services, or an authorized representative acting on its behalf.

    (b) Communicable disease of public health significance. Any of the following diseases:

    (1) Communicable diseases as listed in a Presidential Executive Order, as provided under Section 361(b) of the Public Health Service Act. The current revised list of quarantinable communicable diseases is available at http://www.cdc.gov and http://www.archives.gov/federal-register.

    (2) Communicable diseases that may pose a public health emergency of international concern if it meets one or more of the factors listed in § 34.3(d) and for which the Director has determined a threat exists for importation into the United States, and such disease may potentially affect the health of the American public. The determination will be made consistent with criteria established in Annex 2 of the International Health Regulations (http://www.who.int/csr/ihr/en/), as adopted by the Fifty-Eighth World Health Assembly in 2005, and as entered into effect in the United States in July 2007, subject to the U.S. Government's reservation and understandings:

    (i) Any of the communicable diseases for which a single case requires notification to the World Health Organization (WHO) as an event that may constitute a public health emergency of international concern, or

    (ii) Any other communicable disease the occurrence of which requires notification to the WHO as an event that may constitute a public health emergency of international concern. HHS/CDC's determinations will be announced by notice in the Federal Register.

    (3) Gonorrhea.

    (4) Hansen's disease, infectious.

    (5) Syphilis, infectious.

    (6) Tuberculosis, active.

    (c) Civil surgeon. A physician designated by DHS to conduct medical examinations of aliens in the United States who are applying for adjustment of status to permanent residence or who are required by DHS to have a medical examination.

    (d) Class A medical notification. Medical notification of:

    (1) A communicable disease of public health significance;

    (2) A failure to present documentation of having received vaccination against “vaccine-preventable diseases” for an alien who seeks admission as an immigrant, or who seeks adjustment of status to one lawfully admitted for permanent residence, which shall include at least the following diseases: Mumps, measles, rubella, polio, tetanus and diphtheria toxoids, pertussis, Haemophilus influenza type B and hepatitis B, and any other vaccinations recommended by the Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices (ACIP) for which HHS/CDC determines, by applying criteria published in the Federal Register, there is a public health need at the time of immigration or adjustment of status. Provided, however, that in no case shall a Class A medical notification be issued for an adopted child who is 10 years of age or younger if, prior to the admission of the child, an adoptive parent or prospective adoptive parent of the child, who has sponsored the child for admission as an immediate relative, has executed an affidavit stating that the parent is aware of the vaccination requirement and will ensure that, within 30 days of the child's admission, or at the earliest time that is medically appropriate, the child will receive the vaccinations identified in the requirement.

    (3)(i) A current physical or mental disorder and behavior associated with the disorder that may pose, or has posed, a threat to the property, safety, or welfare of the alien or others;

    (ii) A history of a physical or mental disorder and behavior associated with the disorder, which behavior has posed a threat to the property, safety, or welfare of the alien or others and which behavior is likely to recur or lead to other harmful behavior; or

    (4) Drug abuse or addiction.

    (e) Class B medical notification. Medical notification of a physical or mental health condition, disease, or disability serious in degree or permanent in nature.

    (f) DHS. U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

    (g) Director. The Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or a designee as approved by the Director or Secretary of Health and Human Services.

    (h) Drug abuse. “Current substance use disorder or substance-induced disorder, mild” as defined in the most recent edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders (DSM) as published by the American Psychiatric Association, or by another authoritative source as determined by the Director, of a substance listed in Section 202 of the Controlled Substances Act, as amended (21 U.S.C. 802).

    (i) Drug addiction. “Current substance use disorder or substance-induced disorder, moderate or severe” as defined in the most recent edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Disorders (DSM), as published by the American Psychiatric Association, or by another authoritative source as determined by the Director, of a substance listed in Section 202 of the Controlled Substances Act, as amended (21 U.S.C. 802).

    (j) Medical examiner. A panel physician, civil surgeon, or other physician designated by the Director to perform medical examinations of aliens.

    (k) Medical hold document. A document issued to DHS by a quarantine officer of HHS at a port of entry which defers the inspection for admission until the cause of the medical hold is resolved.

    (l) Medical notification. A medical examination document issued to a U.S. consular authority or DHS by a medical examiner, certifying the presence or absence of:

    (1) A communicable disease of public health significance;

    (2) Documentation of having received vaccination against “vaccine-preventable diseases” for an alien who seeks admission as an immigrant, or who seeks adjustment of status to one lawfully admitted for permanent residence, which shall include at least the following diseases: Mumps, measles, rubella, polio, tetanus and diphtheria toxoids, pertussis, Haemophilus influenza type B and hepatitis B, and any other vaccinations recommended by the Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices (ACIP) for which HHS/CDC determines, based upon criteria published in the Federal Register, there is a public health need at the time of immigration or adjustment of status. Provided, however, that in no case shall a Class A medical notification be issued for an adopted child who is 10 years of age or younger if, prior to the admission of the child, an adoptive parent or prospective adoptive parent of the child, who has sponsored the child for admission as an immediate relative, has executed an affidavit stating that the parent is aware of the vaccination requirement and will ensure that, within 30 days of the child's admission, or at the earliest time that is medically appropriate, the child will receive the vaccinations identified in the requirement;

    (3)(i) A current physical or mental disorder and behavior associated with the disorder that may pose, or has posed, a threat to the property, safety, or welfare of the alien or others;

    (ii) A history of a physical or mental disorder and behavior associated with the disorder, which behavior has posed a threat to the property, safety, or welfare of the alien or others and which behavior is likely to recur or lead to other harmful behavior;

    (4) Drug abuse or addiction; or

    (5) Any other physical or mental condition, disease, or disability serious in degree or permanent in nature.

    (m) Medical officer. A physician or other medical professional assigned by the Director to conduct physical and mental examinations of aliens on behalf of HHS/CDC.

    (n) Mental disorder. A currently accepted psychiatric diagnosis, as defined by the current edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders published by the American Psychiatric Association or by another authoritative source as determined by the Director.

    (o) Panel physician. A physician selected by a United States embassy or consulate to conduct medical examinations of aliens applying for visas.

    (p) Physical disorder. A currently accepted medical diagnosis, as defined by the current edition of the Manual of the International Classification of Diseases, Injuries, and Causes of Death published by the World Health Organization or by another authoritative source as determined by the Director.

    § 34.3 Scope of examinations.

    (a) General. In performing examinations, medical examiners shall consider those matters that relate to the following:

    (1) Communicable disease of public health significance;

    (2) Documentation of having received vaccination against “vaccine-preventable diseases” for an alien who seeks admission as an immigrant, or who seeks adjustment of status to one lawfully admitted for permanent residence, which shall include at least the following diseases: Mumps, measles, rubella, polio, tetanus and diphtheria toxoids, pertussis, Haemophilus influenza type B and hepatitis B, and any other vaccinations recommended by the Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices (ACIP) for which HHS/CDC determines there is a public health need at the time of immigration or adjustment of status.

    Provided, however, that in no case shall a Class A medical notification be issued for an adopted child who is 10 years of age or younger if, prior to the admission of the child, an adoptive parent or prospective adoptive parent of the child, who has sponsored the child for admission as an immediate relative, has executed an affidavit stating that the parent is aware of the vaccination requirement and will ensure that, within 30 days of the child's admission, or at the earliest time that is medically appropriate, the child will receive the vaccinations identified in the requirement;

    (3)(i) A current physical or mental disorder and behavior associated with the disorder that may pose, or has posed, a threat to the property, safety, or welfare of the alien or others;

    (ii) A history of a physical or mental disorder and behavior associated with the disorder, which behavior has posed a threat to the property, safety, or welfare of the alien or others and which behavior is likely to recur or lead to other harmful behavior;

    (4) Drug abuse or drug addiction; and

    (5) Any other physical or mental health condition, disease, or disability serious in degree or permanent in nature.

    (b) Scope of all medical examinations. (1) All medical examinations will include the following:

    (i) A general physical examination and medical history, evaluation for tuberculosis, and serologic testing for syphilis.

    (ii) A physical examination and medical history for diseases specified in §§ 34.2(b)(1), and 34.2(b)(4) through 34.2(b)(10).

    (2) For the examining physician to reach a determination and conclusion about the presence or absence of a physical or mental abnormality, disease, or disability, the scope of the examination shall include any laboratory or additional studies that are deemed necessary, either as a result of the physical examination or pertinent information elicited from the alien's medical history or other relevant records.

    (c) Additional medical screening and testing for examinations performed outside the United States.

    (1) HHS/CDC may require additional medical screening and testing for medical examinations performed outside the United States for diseases specified in §§ 34.2(b)(2) and 34.2(b)(3) by applying the risk-based medical and epidemiologic factors in paragraph (d)(2) of this section.

    (2) Such examinations shall be conducted in a defined population in a geographic region or area outside the United States as determined by HHS/CDC.

    (3) Additional medical screening and testing shall include a medical interview, physical examination, laboratory testing, radiologic exam, or other diagnostic procedure, as determined by HHS/CDC.

    (4) Additional medical screening and testing will continue until HHS/CDC determines such screening and testing is no longer warranted based on factors such as the following: Results of disease outbreak investigations and response efforts; effectiveness of containment and control measures; and the status of an applicable determination of public health emergency of international concern declared by the Director General of the WHO.

    (5) HHS/CDC will directly provide medical examiners information pertaining to all applicable additional requirements for medical screening and testing, and will post these at the following Internet addresses: http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dq/technica.htm and http://www.globalhealth.gov.

    (d) Risk-based approach. (1) HHS/CDC will use the medical and epidemiological factors listed in paragraph (d)(2) of this section to determine the following:

    (i) Whether a disease as specified in § 34.2(b)(3)(ii) is a communicable disease of public health significance;

    (ii) Which diseases in § 34.2(b)(2) and (3) merit additional screening and testing, and the geographic area in which HHS/CDC will require this screening.

    (2) Medical and epidemiological factors include the following: (i) The seriousness of the disease's public health impact;

    (ii) Whether the emergence of the disease was unusual or unexpected;

    (iii) The risk of the spread of the disease in the United States;

    (iv) The transmissibility and virulence of the disease;

    (v) The impact of the disease at the geographic location of medical screening; and

    (vi) Other specific pathogenic factors that would bear on a disease's ability to threaten the health security of the United States.

    (e) Persons subject to requirement for chest radiograph examination and serologic testing. (1) As provided in paragraph (e)(2) of this section, a chest radiograph examination and serologic testing for syphilis shall be required as part of the examination of the following:

    (i) Applicants for immigrant visas;

    (ii) Students, exchange visitors, and other applicants for non-immigrant visas required by a U.S. consular authority to have a medical examination;

    (iii) Applicants outside the United States who apply for refugee status;

    (iv) Applicants in the United States who apply for adjustment of their status under the immigration statute and regulations.

    (v) Applicants required by DHS to have a medical examination in connection with determination of their admissibility into the United States.

    (2) Chest radiograph examination and serologic testing. Except as provided in paragraph (e)(2)(iv) of this section, applicants described in paragraph (e)(1) of this section shall be required to have the following:

    (i) For applicants 15 years of age and older, a chest radiograph examination;

    (ii) For applicants under 15 years of age, a chest radiograph examination if the applicant has symptoms of tuberculosis, a history of tuberculosis, or evidence of possible exposure to a transmissible tuberculosis case in a household or other enclosed environment for a prolonged period;

    (iii) For applicants 15 years of age and older, serologic testing for syphilis and other communicable diseases of public health significance as determined by the Director through technical instructions.

    (iv) Exceptions. Serologic testing for syphilis shall not be required if the alien is under the age of 15, unless there is reason to suspect infection with syphilis. An alien, regardless of age, in the United States, who applies for adjustment of status to lawful permanent resident, shall not be required to have a chest radiograph examination unless their tuberculin skin test, or an equivalent test for showing an immune response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis antigens, is positive. HHS/CDC may authorize exceptions to the requirement for a tuberculin skin test, an equivalent test for showing an immune response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis antigens, or chest radiograph examination for good cause, upon application approved by the Director.

    (3) Immune response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis antigens. (i) All aliens 2 years of age or older in the United States who apply for adjustment of status to permanent residents, under the immigration laws and regulations, or other aliens in the United States who are required by DHS to have a medical examination in connection with a determination of their admissibility, shall be required to have a tuberculin skin test or an equivalent test for showing an immune response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis antigens. Exceptions to this requirement may be authorized for good cause upon application approved by the Director. In the event of a positive test of immune response, a chest radiograph examination shall be required. If the chest radiograph is consistent with tuberculosis, the alien shall be referred to the local health authority for evaluation. Evidence of this evaluation shall be provided to the civil surgeon before a medical notification may be issued.

    (ii) Aliens in the United States less than 2 years of age shall be required to have a tuberculin skin test, or an equivalent, appropriate test to show an immune response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis antigens, if there is evidence of contact with a person known to have tuberculosis or other reason to suspect tuberculosis. In the event of a positive test of immune response, a chest radiograph examination shall be required. If the chest radiograph is consistent with tuberculosis, the alien shall be referred to the local health authority for evaluation. Evidence of this evaluation shall be provided to the civil surgeon before a medical notification may be issued.

    (iii) Aliens outside the United States required to have a medical examination shall be required to have a tuberculin skin test, or an equivalent, appropriate test to show an immune response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis antigens, and, if indicated, a chest radiograph.

    (iv) Aliens outside the United States required to have a medical examination shall be required to have a tuberculin skin test, or an equivalent, appropriate test to show an immune response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis antigens, and a chest radiograph, regardless of age, if he/she has symptoms of tuberculosis, a history of tuberculosis, or evidence of possible exposure to a transmissible tuberculosis case in a household or other enclosed environment for a prolonged period, as determined by the Director.

    (4) Additional testing requirements. All applicants may be required to undergo additional testing for tuberculosis based on the medical evaluation.

    (5) How and where performed. All chest radiograph images used in medical examinations performed under the regulations to this part shall be large enough to encompass the entire chest.

    (6) Chest x-ray, laboratory, and treatment reports. The chest radiograph reading and serologic test results for syphilis shall be included in the medical notification. When the medical examiner's conclusions are based on a study of more than one chest x-ray image, the medical notification shall include at least a summary statement of findings of the earlier images, followed by a complete reading of the last image, and dates and details of any laboratory tests and treatment for tuberculosis.

    (f) Procedure for transmitting records. For aliens issued immigrant visas, the medical notification and chest radiograph images, if any, shall be placed in a separate envelope, which shall be sealed. When more than one chest radiograph image is used as a basis for the examiner's conclusions, all images shall be included. Records may be transmitted by other means, as approved by the Director.

    (g) Failure to present records. When a determination of admissibility is to be made at the U.S. port of entry, a medical hold document shall be issued pending completion of any necessary examination procedures. A medical hold document may be issued for aliens who:

    (1) Are not in possession of a valid medical notification, if required;

    (2) Have a medical notification which is incomplete;

    (3) Have a medical notification which is not written in English;

    (4) Are suspected to have an inadmissible medical condition.

    (h) The Secretary of Homeland Security, after consultation with the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Health and Human Services, may in emergency circumstances permit the medical examination of refugees to be completed in the United States.

    (i) All medical examinations shall be carried out in accordance with such technical instructions for physicians conducting the medical examination of aliens as may be issued by the Director. Copies of such technical instructions are available upon request to the Director, Division of Global Migration and Quarantine, Mailstop E03, HHS/CDC, Atlanta GA 30333.

    § 34.4 Medical notifications.

    (a) Medical examiners shall issue medical notifications of their findings of the presence or absence of Class A or Class B medical conditions. The presence of such condition must have been clearly established.

    (b) Class A medical notifications. (1) The medical examiner shall report his/her findings to the consular officer or DHS by Class A medical notification which lists the specific condition for which the alien may be inadmissible, if an alien is found to have:

    (i) A communicable disease of public health significance;

    (ii) A lack of documentation, or no waiver, for an alien who seeks admission as an immigrant, or who seeks adjustment of status to one lawfully admitted for permanent residence, of having received vaccination against vaccine-preventable diseases which shall include at least the following diseases: Mumps, measles, rubella, polio, tetanus and diphtheria toxoids, pertussis, Haemophilus influenza type B and hepatitis B, and any other vaccinations recommended by the Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices (ACIP) for which HHS/CDC determines, by applying criteria published in the Federal Register, there is a public health need at the time of immigration or adjustment of status. Provided however, that a Class A medical notification shall in no case be issued for an adopted child who is 10 years of age or younger if, prior to the admission of the child, an adoptive parent or prospective adoptive parent of the child, who has sponsored the child for admission as an immediate relative, has executed an affidavit stating that the parent is aware of the vaccination requirement and will ensure that, within 30 days of the child's admission, or at the earliest time that is medically appropriate, the child will receive the vaccinations identified in the requirement;

    (iii)(A) A current physical or mental disorder, and behavior associated with the disorder that may pose, or has posed, a threat to the property, safety, or welfare of the alien or others; or

    (B) A history of a physical or mental disorder and behavior associated with the disorder, which behavior has posed a threat to the property, safety, or welfare of the alien or others and which behavior is likely to recur or lead to other harmful behavior;

    (iv) Drug abuse or drug addiction. Provided, however, that a Class A medical notification of a physical or mental disorder, and behavior associated with that disorder that may pose, or has posed, a threat to the property, safety, or welfare of the alien or others, shall in no case be issued with respect to an alien having only mental shortcomings due to ignorance, or suffering only from a condition attributable to remediable physical causes or of a temporary nature, caused by a toxin, medically prescribed drug, or disease.

    (2) The medical notification shall state the nature and extent of the abnormality; the degree to which the alien is incapable of normal physical activity; and the extent to which the condition is remediable. The medical examiner shall indicate the likelihood, that because of the condition, the applicant will require extensive medical care or institutionalization.

    (c) Class B medical notifications. (1) If an alien is found to have a physical or mental abnormality, disease, or disability serious in degree or permanent in nature amounting to a substantial departure from normal well-being, the medical examiner shall report his/her findings to the consular or DHS officer by Class B medical notification which lists the specific conditions found by the medical examiner. Provided, however, that a Class B medical notification shall in no case be issued with respect to an alien having only mental shortcomings due to ignorance, or suffering only from a condition attributable to remediable physical causes or of a temporary nature, caused by a toxin, medically prescribed drug, or disease.

    (2) The medical notification shall state the nature and extent of the abnormality, the degree to which the alien is incapable of normal physical activity, and the extent to which the condition is remediable. The medical examiner shall indicate the likelihood, that because of the condition, the applicant will require extensive medical care or institutionalization.

    (d) Other medical notifications. If as a result of the medical examination, the medical examiner does not find a Class A or Class B condition in an alien, the medical examiner shall so indicate on the medical notification form and shall report his findings to the consular or DHS officer.

    § 34.5 Postponement of medical examination.

    Whenever, upon an examination, the medical examiner is unable to determine the physical or mental condition of an alien, completion of the medical examination shall be postponed for such observation and further examination of the alien as may be reasonably necessary to determine his/her physical or mental condition. The examination shall be postponed for aliens who have an acute infectious disease until the condition is resolved. The alien shall be referred for medical care as necessary.

    § 34.6 Applicability of Foreign Quarantine Regulations.

    Aliens arriving at a port of the United States shall be subject to the applicable provisions of 42 CFR part 71, Foreign Quarantine, with respect to examination and quarantine measures.

    § 34.7 Medical and other care; death.

    (a) An alien detained by or in the custody of DHS may be provided medical, surgical, psychiatric, or dental care by HHS through interagency agreements under which DHS shall reimburse HHS. Aliens found to be in need of emergency care in the course of medical examination shall be treated to the extent deemed practical by the attending physician and if considered to be in need of further care, may be referred to DHS along with the physician's recommendations concerning such further care.

    (b) In case of the death of an alien, the body shall be delivered to the consular or immigration authority concerned. If such death occurs in the United States, or in a territory or possession thereof, public burial shall be provided upon request of DHS and subject to its agreement to pay the burial expenses. Autopsies shall not be performed unless approved by DHS.

    § 34.8 Reexamination; convening of review boards; expert witnesses; reports.

    (a) The Director shall convene a board of medical officers to reexamine an alien:

    (1) Upon the request of DHS for a reexamination by such a board; or

    (2) Upon an appeal to DHS by an alien who, having received a medical examination in connection with the determination of admissibility to the United States (including examination on arrival and adjustment of status as provided in the immigration laws and regulations) has been certified for a Class A condition.

    (b) The board shall reexamine an alien certified as:

    (1) Having a communicable disease of public health significance;

    (2) Lacking documentation of having received vaccination against “vaccine-preventable diseases” for an alien who seeks admission as an immigrant, or who seeks adjustment of status to one lawfully admitted for permanent residence, which shall include at least the following diseases: Mumps, measles, rubella, polio, tetanus and diphtheria toxoids, pertussis, Haemophilus influenza type B and hepatitis B, and any other vaccinations recommended by the Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices (ACIP) for which HHS/CDC determines, by applying criteria published in the Federal Register, there is a public health need at the time of immigration or adjustment of status. Provided, however, that in no case shall a Class A medical notification be issued for an adopted child who is 10 years of age or younger if, prior to the admission of the child, an adoptive or prospective adoptive parent, who has sponsored the child for admission as an immediate relative, has executed an affidavit stating that the parent is aware of the vaccination requirement and will ensure that the child will be vaccinated within 30 days of the child's admission, or at the earliest time that is medically appropriate.

    (3)(i) Having a current physical or mental disorder and behavior associated with the disorder that may pose, or has posed, a threat to the property, safety, or welfare of the alien or others; or

    (ii) Having a history of a physical or mental disorder and behavior associated with the disorder, which behavior has posed a threat to the property, safety, or welfare of the alien or others and which behavior is likely to recur or lead to other harmful behavior; or

    (iii) Having drug abuse or drug addiction;

    (c) The board shall consist of the following:

    (1) In circumstances covered by paragraph (b)(1) of this section, the board shall consist of at least one medical officer who is experienced in the diagnosis and treatment of the communicable disease for which the medical notification has been made;

    (2) In circumstances covered by paragraph (b)(2) of this section, the board shall consist of at least one medical officer who is experienced in the diagnosis and treatment of the vaccine-preventable disease for which the medical notification has been made;

    (3) In circumstances covered by paragraph (b)(3) of this section, the board shall consist of at least one medical officer who is experienced in the diagnosis and treatment of the physical or mental disorder, or substance-related disorder for which medical notification has been made.

    (d) The decision of the majority of the board shall prevail, provided that at least two medical officers concur in the judgment of the board.

    (e) Reexamination shall include:

    (1) Review of all records submitted by the alien, other witnesses, or the board;

    (2) Use of any laboratory or additional studies which are deemed clinically necessary as a result of the physical examination or pertinent information elicited from the alien's medical history;

    (3) Consideration of statements regarding the alien's physical or mental condition made by a physician after his/her examination of the alien; and

    (4) A physical or psychiatric examination of the alien performed by the board, at the board's discretion;

    (f) An alien who is to be reexamined shall be notified of the reexamination not less than 5 days prior thereto.

    (g) The alien, at his/her own cost and expense, may introduce as witnesses before the board such physicians or medical experts as the board may in its discretion permit; provided that the alien shall be permitted to introduce at least one expert medical witness. If any witnesses offered are not permitted by the board to testify (either orally or through written testimony), the record of the proceedings shall show the reason for the denial of permission.

    (h) Witnesses before the board shall be given a reasonable opportunity to review the medical notification and other records involved in the reexamination and to present all relevant and material evidence orally or in writing until such time as the reexamination is declared by the board to be closed. During the course of the reexamination the alien's attorney or representative shall be permitted to question the alien and he/she, or the alien, shall be permitted to question any witnesses offered in the alien's behalf or any witnesses called by the board. If the alien does not have an attorney or representative, the board shall assist the alien in the presentation of his/her case to the end that all of the material and relevant facts may be considered.

    (i) Any proceedings under this section may, at the board's discretion, be conducted based on the written record, including through written questions and testimony.

    (j) The findings and conclusions of the board shall be based on its medical examination of the alien, if any, and on the evidence presented and made a part of the record of its proceedings.

    (k) The board shall report its findings and conclusions to DHS, and shall also give prompt notice thereof to the alien if his/her reexamination has been based on his/her appeal. The board's report to DHS shall specifically affirm, modify, or reject the findings and conclusions of prior examining medical officers.

    (l) The board shall issue its medical notification in accordance with the applicable provisions of this part if it finds that an alien it has reexamined has a Class A or Class B condition.

    (m) If the board finds that an alien it has reexamined does not have a Class A or Class B condition, it shall issue its medical notification in accordance with the applicable provisions of this part.

    (n) After submission of its report, the board shall not be reconvened, nor shall a new board be convened, in connection with the same application for admission or for adjustment of status, except upon the express authorization of the Director.

    Dated: January 12, 2016. Sylvia M. Burwell, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01418 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4163-18-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 680 [Docket No. 151223999-6040-01] RIN 0648-BF68 Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Crab Rationalization Program AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Temporary rule; emergency action; request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    This rule addresses how individual processing quota (IPQ) use caps apply to Bering Sea Chionoecetes bairdi Tanner crab fisheries: The eastern C. bairdi Tanner (EBT) and the western C. bairdi Tanner (WBT). This rule exempts EBT and WBT IPQ crab that is custom processed at a facility through contractual arrangements with the facility owners from being applied against the IPQ use cap of the facility owners. This rule applies to EBT and WBT IPQ crab received for custom processing during the 2015/2016 crab fishing year. Without this rule, substantial amounts of EBT and WBT Class A IFQ crab would remain unharvested, and fishermen, shoreside processors, and communities that participate in the EBT and WBT fisheries have no viable alternatives to mitigate the resulting significant, negative economic effects before the fisheries end for the season. This rule is necessary to temporarily relieve a restriction that is preventing the full harvest of EBT and WBT Class A IFQ crab. This rule is intended to promote the goals and objectives of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, the Fishery Management Plan for Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands King and Tanner Crabs, and other applicable law.

    DATES:

    Effective January 26, 2016 through June 30, 2016. Comments must be received by February 25, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, identified by NOAA-NMFS-2015-0168, by any of the following methods:

    • Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2015-0168 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).

    Electronic copies of the Regulatory Impact Review (RIR) and the Categorical Exclusion prepared for this rule may be obtained from http://www.regulations.gov or from the Alaska Region Web site at http://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov. The Environmental Impact Statement (Program EIS), RIR (Program RIR), Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (Program FRFA), and Social Impact Assessment prepared for the Crab Rationalization Program are available from the NMFS Alaska Region Web site at http://alaskafisheries.noaa.gov.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Keeley Kent, 907-586-7228.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    NMFS manages the king and Tanner crab fisheries in the U.S. exclusive economic zone of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands (BSAI) under the Fishery Management Plan for Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands King and Tanner Crabs (Crab FMP). The Council prepared, and NMFS approved, the Crab FMP under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act), 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq. Regulations governing U.S. fisheries and implementing the Crab FMP appear at 50 CFR parts 600 and 680.

    This rule modifies regulations that specify how IPQ use caps apply to IPQ issued for EBT and WBT crab fisheries for the 2015/2016 crab fishing year. The 2015/2016 crab fishing year ends on June 30, 2016. The following sections describe (1) the BSAI crab fisheries, (2) general background on IPQ use caps and custom processing arrangements, (3) IPQ use caps applicable to the EBT and WBT crab fisheries, and (4) this rule and justification for emergency action.

    The BSAI Crab Fisheries

    The Crab Rationalization Program (Program) was implemented on March 2, 2005 (70 FR 10174). The Program established a limited access privilege program for nine crab fisheries in the BSAI, including the EBT and WBT crab fisheries, and assigned quota share (QS) to persons based on their historic participation in one or more of those nine BSAI crab fisheries during a specific time period. Under the Program, NMFS issued four types of QS: catcher vessel owner (CVO) QS was assigned to holders of License Limitation Program (LLP) licenses who delivered their catch to shoreside crab processors or to stationary floating crab processors; catcher/processor vessel owner QS was assigned to LLP license holders who harvested and processed their catch at sea; captains and crew on board catcher/processor vessels were issued catcher/processor crew QS; and captains and crew on board catcher vessels were issued catcher vessel crew QS. Each year, a person who holds QS may receive an exclusive harvest privilege for a portion of the annual total allowable catch, called individual fishing quota (IFQ).

    NMFS also issued processor quota share (PQS) under the Program. Each year PQS yields an exclusive privilege to process a portion of the IFQ in each of the nine BSAI crab fisheries. This annual exclusive processing privilege is called individual processor quota (IPQ). Only a portion of the QS issued yields IFQ that is required to be delivered to a processor with IPQ. Quota share derived from deliveries made by catcher vessel owners (i.e., CVO QS) is subject to designation as either Class A IFQ or Class B IFQ. Ninety percent of the IFQ derived from CVO QS is designated as Class A IFQ, and the remaining 10 percent is designated as Class B IFQ. Class A IFQ must be matched and delivered to a processor with IPQ. Class B IFQ is not required to be delivered to a specific processor with IPQ. Each year there is a one-to-one match of the total pounds of Class A IFQ with the total pounds of IPQ issued in each crab fishery.

    NMFS issued QS and PQS for the EBT and WBT crab fisheries. Unlike the QS and PQS issued for most other crab fisheries, the QS and PQS issued for the EBT and WBT crab fisheries are not subject to regional delivery and processing requirements, commonly known as regionalization. Therefore, the Class A IFQ that results from EBT and WBT QS, and the IPQ that results from EBT and WBT PQS, can be delivered to, and processed at, any otherwise eligible processing facility.

    In addition, the PQS and resulting IPQ issued for the EBT and WBT crab fisheries are not subject to right-of-first-refusal (ROFR) provisions included in the Program. The ROFR provisions provide certain communities with an option to purchase PQS or IPQ that would otherwise be used outside of the community holding the ROFR.

    Because the EBT and WBT crab fisheries are not subject to regionalization or ROFR provisions, crab harvested under a Class A IFQ permit in these fisheries can be delivered to processors in a broad geographic area more easily than crab harvested under Class A IFQ permits in crab fisheries subject to regionalization and ROFR provisions. The rationale for exempting the EBT and WBT crab fisheries from regionalization and ROFR provisions is described in the Program EIS (see ADDRESSES), and in the final rule implementing the Program (March 2, 2005, 70 FR 10174).

    General Background on IPQ Use Caps and Custom Processing Arrangements

    When the Council recommended the Program, it expressed concern about the potential for excessive consolidation of QS and PQS, and the resulting annual IFQ and IPQ. Excessive consolidation could have adverse effects on crab markets, price setting negotiations between harvesters and processors, employment opportunities for harvesting and processing crew, tax revenue to communities in which crab are landed, and other factors considered and described in the Program EIS (see ADDRESSES). To address these concerns, the Program limits the amount of QS that a person can hold, the amount of IFQ that a person can use, and the amount of IFQ that can be used on board a vessel. Similarly, the Program limits the amount of PQS that a person can hold, the amount of IPQ that a person can use, and the amount of IPQ that can be processed at a given facility. These limits are commonly referred to as use caps.

    In each of the nine BSAI crab fisheries under the Program, a person is limited to holding no more than 30 percent of the PQS initially issued in the fishery and using no more than the amount of IPQ resulting from 30 percent of the initially issued PQS in a given fishery, with a limited exemption for persons receiving more than 30 percent of the initially issued PQS. The rationale for the IPQ use caps is described in the Program EIS (see ADDRESSES) and the final rule implementing the Program (70 FR 10174, March 2, 2005). According to information in section 6.1.1 of the RIR (see ADDRESSES), no person in the EBT or WBT crab fisheries received in excess of 30 percent of the initially issued PQS. Therefore, no person may use an amount of EBT or WBT IPQ greater than an amount resulting from 30 percent of the initially issued EBT or WBT PQS.

    The Program is designed to minimize the potential for a single person to evade the PQS and IPQ use caps through the use of corporate affiliations or other legal relationships. To accomplish this, § 680.7(a)(7) prohibits an IPQ holder from using more IPQ than the maximum amount of IPQ that may be held by that person and states that a person's IPQ use cap is calculated by summing the total amount of IPQ that is held by that person and IPQ held by other persons who are affiliated with that person. The term “affiliation” is defined in § 680.2. Additional terms used in the definition of “affiliation” are described in § 680.2, and NMFS refers the reader to that section for additional detail.

    Under § 680.7(a)(7), any IPQ crab that is “custom processed” at a facility an IPQ holder owns will be applied against the IPQ use cap of the facility owner, unless specifically exempted by § 680.42(b)(7). A custom processing arrangement exists when an IPQ holder has a contract with the owners of a processing facility to have his or her crab processed at that facility, and the IPQ holder (1) does not have an ownership interest in that processing facility, and (2) is not otherwise affiliated with the owners of that processing facility. In custom processing arrangements, the IPQ holder contracts with a facility operator to have the IPQ crab processed according to that IPQ holder's specifications. Custom processing arrangements typically occur when an IPQ holder does not own a shoreside processing facility or cannot economically operate a stationary floating crab processor.

    Shortly after implementation of the Program, the Council submitted and NMFS approved Amendment 27 to the Crab FMP (74 FR 25449, May 28, 2009). Amendment 27 was designed to improve operational efficiencies in crab fisheries with historically low total allowable catches or that occur in more remote regions by exempting certain IPQ crab processed under a custom processing arrangement from applying against the IPQ use cap of the owner of the facility at which IPQ crab are custom processed. For ease of reference, this preamble refers to this exemption as a “custom processing arrangement exemption.” NMFS refers the reader to the preamble to the final rule implementing Amendment 27 to the Crab FMP for additional information regarding the rationale for custom processing arrangement exemptions in specific BSAI crab fisheries. Section 680.42(b)(7) describes the BSAI crab fisheries and other requirements that qualify for a custom processing arrangement exemption.

    Section 680.42(b)(7)(ii)(A) lists the six BSAI crab fisheries for which the custom processing arrangement exemption applies. These are: Bering Sea C. opilio with a North Region designation, Eastern Aleutian Islands golden king crab, Pribilof Island blue and red king crab, Saint Matthew blue king crab, Western Aleutian golden king crab processed west of 174° W. long., and Western Aleutian Islands red king crab. As described later in this preamble, the custom processing arrangement exemption implemented under Amendment 27 does not apply to custom processing arrangements in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries.

    Under the custom processing arrangement exemption, NMFS does not apply any IPQ used at a facility through a custom processing arrangement against the IPQ use cap of the owners of that facility provided there is no affiliation between the person whose IPQ crab is processed at that facility and the IPQ holders who own that facility. Effectively, § 680.42(b)(7)(ii)(A) does not count IPQ crab that are custom processed at a facility owned by an IPQ holder against the IPQ use cap of the owner of the processing facility. In such a case, a person who holds IPQ and who owns a processing facility is credited only with the amount of IPQ crab used by that person, or any affiliates of that person, when calculating IPQ use caps. In sum, these regulations allow processing facility owners who also hold IPQ to be able to use their facility, or facilities, to establish custom processing arrangements with other IPQ holders to process more crab, thereby improving throughput and providing a more economically viable processing operation.

    Section 680.42(b)(7)(ii)(B) provides a custom processing arrangement exemption in the six BSAI crab fisheries described above provided that the facility, at which the IPQ crab are custom processed, meets specific requirements. Under the custom processing arrangement exemption, IPQ crab that are custom processed do not count against the IPQ use cap of persons owning the facility if the facility is located within the boundaries of a home rule, first class, or second class city in the State of Alaska on the effective date of regulations implementing Amendment 27 (June 29, 2009) and is either (1) a shoreside crab processor or (2) a stationary floating crab processor that is located within a harbor and moored at a dock, docking facility, or other permanent mooring buoy, with specific provisions applicable to the City of Atka. The specific provisions applicable to facilities operating within the City of Atka are not directly relevant to the EBT and WBT crab fisheries and this rule, and are not addressed further. Additional information on the facilities to which the custom processing arrangement exemption applies is found in the preamble to the final rule implementing Amendment 27 (74 FR 25449, May 28, 2009) and is not repeated here.

    Finally, § 680.7(a)(8) prohibits a shoreside crab processor or a stationary floating crab processor in which no IPQ holder has a 10 percent or greater ownership interest in the processing facility from receiving more than 30 percent of the IPQ issued for a particular crab fishery. However, IPQ crab processed under a custom processing arrangement does not apply against the limit on the maximum amount of IPQ crab that can be processed at a facility. These regulations effectively allow more than 30 percent of the IPQ for the six BSAI crab fisheries to be processed at a facility if there is no affiliation between the person whose IPQ crab is processed at that facility and the IPQ holders who own that facility.

    Regulations implementing Amendment 27 also modified the calculation of IPQ use caps for IPQ crab subject to ROFR provisions (see § 680.42(b)(7)(ii)(C)). However, as noted earlier in this preamble, ROFR requirements do not apply to EBT and WBT crab. Therefore, modifications to IPQ use cap calculations for IPQ crab subject to ROFR provisions are not described further in this rule.

    IPQ Use Caps Applicable to the EBT and WBT Crab Fisheries

    As noted earlier, EBT and WBT IPQ crab that are processed under a custom processing arrangement are not exempt from IPQ use caps and will apply against a person's IPQ use cap if that person owns the facility (i.e., has a 10 percent or greater direct or indirect ownership interest) at which those IPQ crab are processed. Given the percentage at which the IPQ use caps are set, a minimum of four persons who are not affiliated with each other must receive and process EBT or WBT IPQ crab to ensure that all Class A IFQ can be delivered and processed with no person exceeding the IPQ use caps. Similarly, at least four facilities that are not affiliated through common ownership (i.e., a 10 percent or greater direct or indirect ownership interest) must be used to receive and process EBT and WBT IPQ crab to ensure that all Class A IFQ can be delivered and processed with no facility exceeding the IPQ use caps.

    When the Council recommended and NMFS implemented Amendment 27, the Council and NMFS did not deem it necessary to grant the EBT and WBT crab fisheries a custom processing arrangement exemption. The preamble to the proposed rule implementing Amendment 27 explains that the Council and NMFS did not recommend a custom processing arrangement exemption for EBT and WBT IPQ crab because “Bering Sea C. bairdi crab are not subject to regionalization and therefore the need to exempt custom processing arrangements from the IPQ use cap does not appear necessary because crab can be effectively delivered to any processor with matching IPQ in any location” (73 FR 54351, September 19, 2008).

    Since the implementation of Amendment 27, there has been additional consolidation in the BSAI crab processing sector. As Section 6.2.1 of the RIR describes (see ADDRESSES), during the 2015/2016 crab fishing year there appear to be only three unique unaffiliated persons (processors) who have received EBT and WBT IPQ crab at their facilities. These three processors are the Maruha-Nichiro Corporation, which includes Alyeska Seafoods, Peter Pan Seafoods, and Westward Seafoods; Trident Seafoods; and Unisea Seafoods. Information in section 6.2.1 indicates that these three processors also own and operate all facilities that have processed EBT and WBT IPQ crab during the 2015/2016 crab fishing year.

    The net effect of this processor consolidation is that there are less than the required minimum of four unique and unaffiliated processors active in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries. Therefore, only 90 percent of the Class A IFQ can be delivered to, and only 90 percent of the IPQ may be used at, facilities owned and operated by Maruha-Nichiro Corporation, Trident Seafoods, and Unisea Seafoods without causing the IPQ use caps to be exceeded. The remaining 10 percent of the 2015/2016 EBT Class A IFQ/IPQ, or 826,322 pounds, and the remaining 10 percent of the 2015/2016 WBT Class A IFQ/IPQ, or 615,489 pounds, must be either delivered to processing facilities that are not affiliated with Maruha-Nichiro Corporation, Trident Seafoods, or Unisea Seafoods or left unharvested (see Section 6.2.1 of the RIR for more detail). In total, 10 percent of the Class A IFQ/IPQ for both the EBT and WBT crab fisheries equals 1,441,811 pounds.

    Sections 7.1 and 7.2 of the RIR indicate that developing or using an alternative processing facility not affiliated with the Maruha-Nichiro Corporation, Trident Seafoods, or Unisea Seafoods would not be a feasible processing option for the remainder of the 2015/2016 crab fishing year for several reasons. First, even though the 2015/2016 crab fishing year ends on June 30, 2016, under the Crab FMP, the Crab FMP authorizes the State of Alaska to establish specific regulations that define the length of a crab fishing season during a crab fishing year. By State of Alaska regulation, the EBT and WBT 2015/2016 crab fishing seasons end on March 31, 2016. This regulatory closure date of the EBT and WBT crab fisheries provides very limited time for IPQ holders to find an alternative processing facility.

    Second, although there are alternative shoreside processing facilities not affiliated with the Maruha-Nichiro Corporation, Trident Seafoods, or Unisea Seafoods, most of those facilities are located far from the Bering Sea crab fishing grounds, such as in Kodiak, Alaska. Transporting EBT or WBT crab to those locations would result in longer trips with increased fuel and operating costs for harvesters, result in lost fishing days while the crab are being transported, and increase the potential for deadloss (death) of crab, which becomes increasingly likely the longer that the crab are held in storage tanks and transported. In addition, alternative shoreside processing facilities, regardless of their location to the BSAI crab fishing grounds, have not provisioned and planned their processing operations to accommodate a relatively small proportion of the EBT and WBT IPQ allocations (i.e., only 10 percent of the EBT and WBT IPQ). The costs of provisioning those alternative shoreside facilities for a relatively small amount of crab and without adequate planning would likely impose substantial additional costs relative to processing operations provisioned and planned prior to the start of the EBT and WBT crab fisheries. Deliveries to alternative shoreside processing facilities would impose a substantial burden and cost on Class A IFQ holders in terms of added delivery costs and time.

    Third, sections 7.1 and 7.2 of the RIR indicate that using a stationary floating crab processor would not be a feasible processing option for the remainder of the 2015/2016 crab fishing year. Establishing a contract with a stationary floating crab processor, outfitting the vessel, and establishing a market for delivered Class A IFQ EBT and WBT crab in the short amount of time available before the end of the fisheries would present many of the same logistical challenges that are present for alternative shoreside processing facilities.

    Finally, any IPQ holder hoping to secure an alternative shoreside processing facility or a stationary floating crab processor will have very little negotiating leverage with any unaffiliated processing facility given the amount of time remaining for the EBT and WBT crab season. That lack of negotiating leverage in establishing delivery terms and conditions could impose additional costs on IPQ holders and harvesters that may make such deliveries uneconomic. Sections 7.1 and 7.2 of the RIR conclude that there do not appear to be any viable delivery options available for 10 percent of the EBT and WBT Class A IFQ during the remainder of the 2015/2016 crab fishing year.

    This Rule and Justification for Emergency Action

    This rule temporarily suspends the existing § 680.42(b)(7)(ii) and adds a temporary § 680.42(b)(7)(iii) that includes EBT and WBT IPQ crab received during the 2015/2016 crab fishing year to the list of BSAI crab fisheries already receiving a custom processing arrangement exemption. This allows EBT and WBT IPQ crab received for custom processing by the three processors operating in these fisheries to qualify for a custom processing arrangement exemption and not apply against the IPQ use caps for these processors. With this rule, all EBT and WBT IPQ crab received during the 2015/2016 crab fishing year under custom processing arrangements at the facilities owned by the Maruha-Nichiro Corporation, Trident Seafoods, or Unisea Seafoods will not be counted against the IPQ use cap of the facility or the facility owners. The custom processing arrangement exemption implemented by this rule will allow the three processors to custom process crab for unaffiliated IPQ holders who have custom processing arrangements with the processors, thereby allowing harvesters with Class A IFQ to fully harvest and deliver their allocations of EBT and WBT crab to IPQ holders with a custom processing arrangement at facilities operating in the these fisheries.

    Section 305(c) of the Magnuson-Stevens Act provides authority for rulemaking to address an emergency. Under that section, a regional fishery management council may recommend emergency rulemaking if it finds an emergency exists. NMFS' Policy Guidelines for the Use of Emergency Rules provide that the only legal prerequisite for such rulemaking is that an emergency must exist, and that NMFS must have an administrative record justifying emergency regulatory action and demonstrating compliance with the Magnuson-Stevens Act and the National Standards (see NMFS Instruction 01-101-07 (March 31, 2008) and 62 FR 44421, August 21, 1997). Emergency rulemaking is intended for circumstances that are “extremely urgent,” where “substantial harm to or disruption of the . . . fishery . . . would be caused in the time it would take to follow standard rulemaking procedures.”

    Under NMFS' Policy Guidelines for the Use of Emergency Rules (62 FR 44421, August 21, 1997), the phrase “an emergency exists involving any fishery” is defined as a situation that meets the following three criteria:

    (1) Results from recent, unforeseen events or recently discovered circumstances; and

    (2) Presents serious conservation or management problems in the fishery; and

    (3) Can be addressed through emergency regulations for which the immediate benefits outweigh the value of advance notice, public comment, and deliberative consideration of the impacts on participants to the same extent as would be expected under the normal rulemaking process.

    The following sections review each of these criteria and describe why the Council and NMFS determined that allowing EBT and WBT IPQ crab to qualify for a custom processing arrangement exemption for the remainder of the 2015/2016 crab fishing year meets these criteria.

    Criterion 1—Recent, Unforeseen Events or Recently Discovered Circumstances

    The Council and NMFS recently discovered that the processors currently receiving EBT and WBT crab are constrained by the IPQ use caps from being able to fully process all Class A IFQ issued for the EBT and WBT crab fisheries in 2015/2016. The one processing facility that previously operated in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries, and that was not affiliated with the Maruha-Nichiro Corporation, Trident Seafoods, or Unisea Seafoods, recently terminated its 2015/2016 BSAI crab processing operations. Harvesters with the Intercooperative Crab Exchange (ICE) notified the Council and NMFS that given these operational factors, the application of IPQ use caps in the EBT and WBT fisheries could limit their ability to fully harvest their Class A IFQ allocations. ICE is a crab cooperative that represents most of the EBT and WBT QS holders and receives most of Class A IFQ in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries. ICE submitted a petition to the Council requesting that the Council recommend an emergency rule to provide a custom processing arrangement exemption for EBT and WBT IPQ crab on December 9, 2015. The Council recommended an emergency rule to provide that custom processing arrangement exemption on December 15, 2015.

    Harvesters with EBT and WBT Class A IFQ and the Council noted that harvesters are not responsible for the operational decisions of processors, and harvesters were not aware until recently of the impact of this decision on IPQ use cap calculations and their ability to fully harvest and deliver their Class A IFQ. Harvesters with Class A IFQ have stated that they did not become aware of the lack of adequate processing capacity under the IPQ use caps until after the EBT and WBT crab fisheries were underway for the 2015/2016 crab fishing year. Consequently, harvesters with Class A IFQ did not foresee that the IPQ use cap would constrain them from delivering the full amount of their EBT and WBT Class A IFQ allocations.

    Section 680.20(h) requires Class A IFQ holders to “share match” with processors holding available IPQ as a condition of making crab deliveries. Harvesters with Class A IFQ were able to share match their EBT and WBT Class A IFQ before the fishery start date of October 15, 2015, and reasonably concluded they would be able to deliver their Class A IFQ crab to specific IPQ holders operating at specific facilities. The application of the IPQ use caps in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries, the consolidation of processors receiving EBT and EBT Class A IFQ, and the lack of a custom processing arrangement exemption for EBT and WBT IPQ constrain the ability for Class A IFQ holders to fully harvest and deliver their crab given the processing options available in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries. The Council and NMFS determined that this is a recent and unforeseen event due to recently discovered circumstances outside of the control of Class A IFQ holders. The consolidation of processors below the minimum needed to process all of the EBT and WBT Class A IFQ without exceeding the IPQ use caps was not foreseen by the Council and NMFS and was recently discovered after the start of the 2015/2016 EBT and EBT crab fishing seasons.

    Criterion 2—Presents Serious Conservation or Management Problems in the Fishery

    The Council and NMFS determined that this criterion is met because without an emergency rule there will be a substantial adverse economic impact on harvesters, processors, and communities. Without an emergency rule, as much as 10 percent of the Class A IFQ for both the EBT and WBT crab fisheries, or 1,441,811 pounds of crab, will be unable to be harvested due to an insufficient number of adequate processing facilities that can receive Class A IFQ without IPQ holders exceeding their IPQ use caps. The lost revenue from this forgone harvest is estimated to be approximately $ 3.4 million in ex-vessel value and $ 4.95 million in first wholesale value based on estimated ex-vessel and wholesale values of EBT and WBT crab in 2015/2016 (see Sections 7.1 and 7.2 of the RIR for additional detail).

    Without a custom processing arrangement exemption, harvesters with Class A EBT and WBT IFQ would be unable to harvest allocations provided to them due to limitations imposed on IPQ holders and processors that receive EBT and WBT crab would not be able to fully process the EBT and WBT crab resource. In addition to lost revenue to harvesters and processors, communities where EBT and WBT crab are delivered will not receive benefits from labor payments and tax revenue without this rule. This rule is the only mechanism to restore the forgone harvest and lost revenue because other BSAI crab fisheries that could substitute for this lost revenue are fully allocated and are not available to compensate EBT and WBT Class A IFQ holders. Section 7 of the RIR provides additional detail on the economic impacts of this rule.

    The Council and NMFS also determined that implementation of this rule will not create conservation issues with regard to BSAI crab generally, or the EBT and WBT crab fisheries specifically. This rule will allow Class A IFQ holders in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries to fully harvest their IFQ allocations, but still limit the overall amount of harvest in these fisheries to the IFQ allocations authorized for the 2015/2016 crab fishing year.

    Criterion 3—Can Be Addressed Through Emergency Rulemaking for Which the Immediate Benefits Outweigh the Value of Notice and Comment Rulemaking

    NMFS and the Council have determined that the emergency situation created by the lack of adequate processing facilities that can be used to receive all EBT and WBT IPQ crab can be addressed by emergency regulations. As explained earlier in this preamble, creating a temporary custom processing arrangement exemption through this rule will allow harvesters to fully harvest their Class A IFQ allocations in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries without creating conservation and management issues for the resource or direct users of BSAI crab resources, and is consistent with the goals of the Program (see Section 5 of the RIR for additional detail).

    To address the emergency, NMFS must implement an emergency rule that waives the comment period and delay in effective date otherwise required by law. The benefits of these waivers will serve the public interest by allowing for the complete harvest of EBT and WBT crab within the relatively short amount of time remaining in the 2015/2016 EBT and WBT crab seasons. Any delay in effectiveness will preclude the ability to completely harvest and process EBT and WBT crab during the 2015/2016 crab fishing year.

    Without the waivers, Class A IFQ holders in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries will not have sufficient time to prosecute these fisheries as intended. As noted earlier, the EBT and WBT crab fisheries close by State of Alaska regulation on March 31, 2016. Harvesters are currently prosecuting the EBT and WBT crab fisheries and due to the unique nature of the EBT and WBT crab fisheries, harvesters will need as much time as possible to harvest the 1,441,811 pounds of Tanner crab. Additionally, for the rule to be effective in providing relief, Class A IFQ holders need to know as soon as possible that they have available processors to deliver the remainder of their EBT and WBT Class A IFQ.

    Harvesters in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries submitted a petition for emergency action to the Council shortly before the start of the Council's December 2015 meeting that began on December 9, 2015. They asked that the Council revise the custom processing arrangement exemption to include the EBT and WBT crab fisheries. The fisheries that receive a custom processing arrangement exemption are specified in the Crab FMP and applying the exemption to additional fisheries would require an amendment to the Crab FMP. In order for the Council to recommend an amendment to the Crab FMP, the Council would need to notice the public that such an action was being considered prior to a Council meeting consistent with established public notice requirements. Because the Council was not aware of this issue until shortly before its December 2015 meeting, no such notice could have been provided for the December 2015 Council meeting. The next scheduled meeting of the Council is February 2016, and that is the earliest date at which the Council could notice the public that it is considering amending the Crab FMP.

    Secretarial review of fishery management plan (FMP) amendments must follow the process set forth in section 304 of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, which requires more time to complete than is available to provide relief for the EBT and WBT crab fishery participants given the regulatory closure of the EBT and WBT crab fisheries on March 31, 2016. While the normal rulemaking process is the preferred avenue for making regulatory changes, as it provides interested parties the full ability to comment, the Council and NMFS have determined that in this case, the cost of the forgone harvest opportunity outweighs the benefit of using the more protracted, standard process because it would be ineffective for addressing the immediate issue. The Council initiated a typical FMP amendment process in December 2015 to address this situation in a more permanent manner.

    The purpose of this rule is to temporarily allow EBT and WBT IPQ crab to be subject to a custom processing arrangement exemption for the 2015/2016 crab fishing year, while allowing continued analysis of the issue in a separate, and standard, FMP amendment process. This rule is needed to allow the complete harvesting and processing of the EBT and WBT crab fisheries during the 2015/2016 crab fishing year and will temporarily ameliorate unforeseen adverse economic consequences due to the insufficient number of adequate processing facilities.

    Classification

    The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, NOAA, has determined that this rule is consistent with the National Standards, other provisions of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, and other applicable laws.

    The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, NOAA, finds good cause pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) to waive prior notice and the opportunity for public comment because it would be impracticable and contrary to the public interest. This rule will allow for the full harvesting and processing of the EBT and WBT crab fisheries and should prevent economic losses from the limitations on the use of EBT and WBT IPQ created by the unforeseen lack of adequate processing capacity. This rule will avoid adverse economic impacts to harvesters, processors, and communities that would otherwise result if the EBT and WBT crab fisheries could not be fully harvested during the 2015/2016 crab fishing year. If this rule were delayed to allow for notice and comment, impacted entities would likely be prevented from harvesting 826,322 pounds of EBT crab and 615,489 pounds of WBT crab that would otherwise be available to impacted entities through the remainder of the 2015/2016 crab fishing year. The lost revenue from this forgone harvest is estimated to be approximately $3.4 million in ex-vessel value and $4.95 million in first wholesale value. In addition to lost revenue to harvesters and processors, communities where EBT and WBT crab are delivered will not receive benefits from labor payments and tax revenue without this rule. Fishermen, shoreside processors, and communities that participate in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries would have limited alternatives to mitigate this significant, negative economic impact. Providing relief through this rule as soon as possible is likely to ensure that these crab can be harvested before the regulatory closure of the EBT and WBT crab fisheries, provide the associated harvesting and processing revenues, and provide benefits to communities engaged in these crab fisheries. This rule promotes the goals and objectives of the Program, the Crab FMP, and the Magnuson-Stevens Act by removing a restriction that is preventing the otherwise authorized harvesting and processing of fishery resources.

    As explained earlier, the lack of sufficient processing capacity in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries was not foreseen prior to or at the start of the EBT and EBT crab fisheries and was only recently discovered. Harvesters with Class A IFQ in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries are not responsible for the decisions of processors to cease operations of processing facilities, and were not aware of the impact of any operational decisions on their ability to harvest and deliver their Class A IFQ. Class A IFQ holders are not able to mitigate fishing operations in a manner that avoids the use of IPQ. Therefore, Class A IFQ holders cannot undertake actions that will allow them to fully harvest their EBT and WBT Class A IFQ without being constrained by regulations that require that IPQ use caps not be exceeded.

    Finally, if required to go through notice-and-comment rulemaking, Class A IFQ holders would not have sufficient time to harvest their Class A IFQ prior to the closure of the EBT and WBT crab fisheries on March 31, 2016. In addition to the notice-and-comment requirements under the Administrative Procedure Act, the Magnuson-Stevens Act FMP amendment process sets forth certain requirements that must be followed, such as a 60-day comment period on an FMP amendment. Because the EBT and WBT crab fisheries close by regulation on March 31, 2016, there is not enough time to follow the FMP amendment process prescribed by the Magnuson-Stevens Act and provide sufficient time for the harvest of EBT and WBT Class A IFQ. NMFS has no way other than this rule to amend IPQ use cap regulations to provide fishing opportunities for the EBT and WBT crab fisheries during the 2015/2016 crab fishing year that would otherwise be forgone. Amending IPQ use cap regulations in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries through this rule for the remainder of the 2015/2016 crab fishing year provides immediate economic benefits that outweigh the value of the deliberative notice-and-comment rulemaking process.

    Similarly, for the reasons above that support the need to implement this rule in a timely manner, the Assistant Administrator for Fisheries finds good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3) to waive the 30-day delay in effectiveness provision of the Administrative Procedure Act and make this rule effective immediately upon publication in the Federal Register. As stated above, this rule will allow for harvesting and processing of the remainder of the Class A IFQ in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries for the 2015/2016 crab fishing year, and will prevent economic losses from the inability to fully harvest and process Class A IFQ in the EBT and WBT crab fisheries.

    This action is being taken pursuant to the emergency provision of the Magnuson-Stevens Act and is exempt from Office of Management and Budget review. The RIR prepared for this rule is available from NMFS (see ADDRESSES).

    This rule is exempt from the procedures of the Regulatory Flexibility Act because this rule is not subject to the requirement to provide prior notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553 or any other law. Accordingly, no regulatory flexibility analysis is required and none has been prepared.

    List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 680

    Alaska, Fisheries, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    Dated: January 20, 2016. Samuel D. Rauch III, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine Fisheries Service.

    For the reasons set out in the preamble, 50 CFR part 680 is amended as follows:

    PART 680—SHELLFISH FISHERIES OF THE EXCLUSIVE ECONOMIC ZONE OFF ALASKA 1. The authority citation for 50 CFR part 680 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1862; Pub. L. 109-241; Pub. L. 109-479.

    2. In § 680.42: a. Suspend paragraph (b)(7)(ii) effective January 26, 2016 through June 30, 2016; and b. Add paragraph (b)(7)(iii) effective January 26, 2016 through June 30, 2016.

    The addition reads as follows:

    § 680.42 Limitations on use of QS, PQS, IFQ, and IPQ.

    (b) * * *

    (7) * * *

    (iii) The following conditions apply:

    (A) The IPQ crab is:

    (1) BSS IPQ crab with a North region designation;

    (2) EAG IPQ crab;

    (3) EBT IPQ crab received by an RCR during the 2015/2016 crab fishing year;

    (4) PIK IPQ crab;

    (5) SMB IPQ crab;

    (6) WAG IPQ crab provided that IPQ crab is processed west of 174 degrees west longitude;

    (7) WAI IPQ crab; or

    (8) WBT IPQ crab received by an RCR during the 2015/2016 crab fishing year; and

    (B) That IPQ crab is processed at:

    (1) Any shoreside crab processor located within the boundaries of a home rule, first class, or second class city in the State of Alaska in existence on June 29, 2009; or

    (2) Any stationary floating crab processor that is:

    (i) Located within the boundaries of a home rule, first class, or second class city in the State of Alaska in existence on June 29, 2009;

    (ii) Moored at a dock, docking facility, or at a permanent mooring buoy, unless that stationary floating crab processor is located within the boundaries of the city of Atka in which case that stationary floating crab processor is not required to be moored at a dock, docking facility, or at a permanent mooring buoy; and

    (iii) Located within a harbor, unless that stationary floating crab processor is located within the boundaries of the city of Atka on June 29, 2009 in which case that stationary floating crab processor is not required to be located within a harbor; or

    (C) The IPQ crab is:

    (1) Derived from PQS that is, or was, subject to a ROFR as that term is defined at § 680.2;

    (2) Derived from PQS that has been transferred from the initial recipient of those PQS to another person under the requirements described at § 680.41;

    (3) Received by an RCR who is not the initial recipient of those PQS; and

    (4) Received by an RCR within the boundaries of the ECC for which that PQS and IPQ derived from that PQS is, or was, designated in the ROFR.

    [FR Doc. 2016-01406 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    81 16 Tuesday, January 26, 2016 Proposed Rules DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Office of the Secretary 2 CFR Subtitle B, Ch. IV 5 CFR Ch. LXXIII 7 CFR Subtitle A; Subtitle B, Chs. I-XI, XIV-XVIII, XX, XXV-XXXVIII, XLII 9 CFR Chs. I-III 36 CFR Ch. II 48 CFR Ch. 4 Identifying and Reducing Regulatory Burdens AGENCY:

    Office of the Secretary, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Request for Information (RFI).

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with Executive Order 13563, “Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review,” and Executive Order 13610, “Identifying and Reducing Regulatory Burdens,” the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is continuing to review its regulatory programs and evaluate their burdens and their effectiveness. As part of this effort, USDA welcomes public comment on which regulations should be modified, expanded, streamlined, or repealed to make the USDA's regulatory program more effective or less burdensome in achieving the regulatory objectives. The 2015 Fall Regulatory Agenda provides a summary of the USDA regulations under development or review during the coming year. Similarly, USDA's 2015 Statement of Regulatory Priorities provides a list of important regulatory actions that USDA is considering for issuance in proposed or final form during the 2016 fiscal year.

    DATES:

    Comments and information are requested on or before March 28, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Interested persons are invited to submit comments regarding this notice. All submissions must refer to “Retrospective Review” to ensure proper delivery.

    Electronic Submission of Comments. Interested persons may submit comments electronically through the Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. USDA strongly encourages commenters to submit comments electronically. Electronic submission of comments allows the commenter maximum time to prepare and submit a comment, and ensures timely receipt by USDA. Commenters should follow the instructions provided on that site to submit comments electronically.

    Submission of Comments by Mail, Hand delivery, or Courier. Paper, disk, or CD-ROM submissions should be submitted to Michael Poe, Office of Budget and Program Analysis, USDA, Jamie L. Whitten Building, Room 101-A, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Michael Poe, Telephone Number: (202) 720-3257.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    USDA remains committed to minimizing the burdens on individuals businesses, and communities for participation in and compliance with USDA programs that promote economic growth, create jobs, and protect the health and safety of the American people. USDA's planned regulatory actions and retrospective review efforts were made available in the 2015 Fall Unified Regulatory Agenda (http://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/eAgendaMain?operation=OPERATION_GET_AGENCY_RULE_LIST&currentPub=true&agencyCode=&showStage=active&agencyCd=0500) and the USDA Statement of Regulatory Priorities (http://www.reginfo.gov/public/jsp/eAgenda/StaticContent/201510/Statement_0500.html).

    USDA programs are diverse and far reaching, as are the regulations and legislation that implement their delivery. The regulations range from nutrition standards for the school lunch program, natural resources and environmental measures governing national forest usage and soil conservation, emergency producer assistance as a result of natural disasters, to protection of American agriculture from the ravages of plant or animal pestilence. USDA regulations extend from farm to supermarket to ensure the safety, quality, and availability of the Nation's food supply. Regulations also specify how USDA conducts its business, including access to and eligibility for USDA programs. Finally, regulations specify the responsibilities of businesses, individuals, and State and local governments that are necessary to comply with their provisions.

    I. Executive Orders 13563 and 13610

    The overall intention of Executive Orders 13563 and 13610 is to create a continuing process of scrutiny of regulatory actions.

    Executive Order 13563, “Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review,” was issued to ensure that Federal regulations use the best available tools to promote innovation that will reduce costs and burden while allowing public participation and an open exchange of ideas. These principles enhance and strengthen Federal regulations to allow them to achieve their regulatory objectives, most important among them protecting public health, welfare, safety, and the environment. In consideration of these principles, and as directed by the Executive Order, Federal agencies and departments need to periodically review existing regulations that may be outmoded, ineffective, insufficient, or excessively burdensome and to modify, streamline, expand, or repeal them in accordance with what has been learned.

    In addition, Executive Order 13610, “Identifying and Reducing Regulatory Burdens,” directed Federal agencies to conduct retrospective analyses of existing rules to examine whether they remain justified and whether they should be modified or streamlined in light of changed circumstances, including the availability of new technologies. Executive Order 13610 directs Federal agencies to give priority, consistent with law, to those initiatives that will produce significant quantifiable monetary savings or significant quantifiable reductions in paperwork burdens while protecting public health, welfare, safety, and the environment. For the regulatory requirements imposed on small businesses, it directs Federal agencies to give special consideration to initiatives that would simplify or harmonize the regulatory requirements.

    II. Request for Information

    USDA is seeking public comment on our effort: To identify and reduce regulatory burdens; to remove unintended regulatory obstacles to participation in and compliance with USDA programs; and to improve current regulations to help USDA agencies advance the USDA mission. USDA is particularly interested in public comments that speak to areas in which we can reduce costs and reporting burdens on the public, through technological advances or other modernization efforts, and comments on regulatory flexibility.

    III. Regulatory Flexibility

    USDA is also seeking public input on measures that can be taken to reduce burdens and increase flexibility and freedom of choice for the public. Regulatory flexibility includes a variety of regulatory techniques that can help avoid unnecessary costs on regulated entities and avoid negative impacts. Regulatory flexibility techniques could include:

    • Pilot projects, which can be used to test regulatory approaches;

    • Safe harbors, which are streamlined modes of regulatory compliance and can serve to reduce compliance costs;

    • Sunset provisions, which terminate a rule after a certain date;

    • Trigger provisions, which specify one or more threshold indicators that the rule is designed to address;

    • Phase-ins, which allow the rule to be phased-in for different groups at different times;

    • Streamlined requirements, which provide exemptions or other streamlined requirements if a particular entity (for example, a small business) may otherwise experience disproportionate burden from a rule;

    • State flexibilities, which provide greater flexibility to States or other regulatory partners, for example, giving them freedom to implement alternative regulatory approaches; and

    • Exceptions, which allow exceptions to part of the rule, or the entire rule in cases where there is a potential or suspected unintended consequence.

    IV. Existing USDA Regulations

    In addition to retrospective review actions and other regulatory reforms identified in USDA's 2015 Fall Regulatory Agenda, we welcome comments from the public on any of USDA's existing regulations and ways to improve them to help USDA agencies advance the mission of the Department consistent with the Executive Order. USDA notes that this RFI is issued solely for information and program-planning purposes. While responses to this RFI do not bind USDA to any further actions, all submissions will be reviewed by the appropriate program office, and made publicly available on http://www.regulations.gov.

    Dated: January 7, 2016. Thomas J. Vilsack, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-00693 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-90-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA-2014-0338; Directorate Identifier 2014-CE-010-AD] RIN 2120-AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Piper Aircraft, Inc. Airplanes AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

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

    SUMMARY:

    We are revising an earlier proposed airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Piper Aircraft, Inc. Model PA-31-350 airplanes. The NPRM proposed to require inspecting the fuel hose assembly and the turbocharger support assembly for proper clearance between them, inspecting each assembly for any sign of damage, and making any necessary repairs or replacements. The NPRM was prompted by a report of an engine fire caused by a leak in the fuel pump inlet hose. This action revises the NPRM by requiring the use of revised procedures in a new service bulletin. We are proposing this supplemental NPRM (SNPRM) to correct the unsafe condition on these products. Since these actions impose an additional burden over that proposed in the NPRM, we are reopening the comment period to allow the public the chance to comment on these proposed changes.

    DATES:

    We must receive comments on this SNPRM by March 11, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

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

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

    Fax: 202-493-2251.

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

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

    For service information identified in this proposed AD, contact Piper Aircraft, Inc., 2926 Piper Drive, Vero Beach, Florida 32960; telephone: (772) 567-4361; fax: (772) 978-6573; Internet: www.piper.com/home/pages/Publications.cfm. You may view this referenced service information at the FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Kansas City, Missouri 64106. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call (816) 329-4148.

    Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2014-0338; or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this proposed AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for the Docket Office (phone: 800-647-5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Gary Wechsler, Aerospace Engineer, FAA, Atlanta Aircraft Certification Office, 1701 Columbia Avenue, College Park, Georgia 30337; telephone: (404) 474-5575; fax: (404) 474-5606; email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Comments Invited

    We invite you to send any written relevant data, views, or arguments about this proposed AD. Send your comments to an address listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include “Docket No. FAA-2014-0338; Directorate Identifier 2014-CE-010-AD” at the beginning of your comments. We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of this proposed AD. We will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend this proposed AD because of those comments.

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

    Discussion

    We issued an NPRM to amend 14 CFR part 39 by adding an AD that would apply to certain Piper Aircraft, Inc. Model PA-31-350 airplanes. The NPRM published in the Federal Register on June 3, 2014 (79 FR 31888). The NPRM proposed to require inspecting the fuel hose assembly and the turbocharger support assembly for proper clearance between them, inspecting each assembly for any sign of damage, and making any necessary repairs or replacements.

    Actions Since Previous NPRM Was Issued

    Since we issued the NPRM (79 FR 31888, June 3, 2014), Piper Aircraft, Inc. has revised the related service information to clarify which engines are part of the airplane applicability and to revise the accomplishment instructions for inspecting for proper clearance between the fuel hose assembly and the turbocharger support assembly, inspecting the fuel hose assembly and the turbocharger support assembly for any signs of damage, and taking all necessary corrective actions.

    Comments

    We gave the public the opportunity to participate in developing this AD. The following presents the comment received on the NPRM (79 FR 31888, June 3, 2014) and the FAA's response to the comment.

    Request To Change the Applicability of the AD

    Joe Miller of Werbelow's Air Ventures, Inc., requested that the Applicability section of the AD be changed so that it applies only to Piper Aircraft, Inc. Model PA-31-350 airplanes with TIO-540-J2B engine configurations.

    The commenter stated that Model PA-31-350 airplanes configured with TIO-540-J2B engines have fuel pumps orientated such that their inlet fuel hose assemblies can adversely contact a nearby turbocharger support assembly. The commenter also stated that the other type certificated engine configurations of applicable Model PA-31-350 airplanes have engine fuel pumps orientated such that their inlet fuel hose assemblies cannot adversely contact the nearby turbocharger support assembly.

    The commenter requested that the AD exclude Model PA-31-350 airplanes that have the fuel pump installed on a Lycoming (L)TIO-540-J2BD engine.

    We partially agree with the commenter. We agree that there is more than one orientation for the engine fuel pump in the applicable Model PA-31-350 airplanes with (L)TIO-540 series engines because this is shown in the Lycoming parts catalog for the TIO, LTIO-540-J2B, and -J2BD engines, which were type certificated on the Model PA-31-350 airplane.

    We disagree with the commenter's request to change the actions of the AD so that they apply only to the inlet hose assembly for the engine fuel pump of the TIO-540-J2B engine configuration of applicable Model PA-31-350 airplanes. We reviewed the Lycoming parts catalog for the TIO, LTIO-540-J2B, and -J2BD engines and applicable Model PA-31-350 airplanes with (L)TIO-540-J2BD engines and found that the TIO and LTIO-540-J2B and -J2BD engines each have a fuel pump with one fuel hose assembly (either and inlet or exit) that can be incorrectly installed so that it is in contact with the nearby turbocharger support assembly.

    Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    We reviewed Piper Aircraft, Inc. Service Bulletin No. 1257A, dated August 4, 2015. The service information describes procedures for the following. This service information is reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by the means identified in the ADDRESSES section of this SNPRM.

    —Inspecting for a minimum 3/16-inch clearance between the fuel hose assembly and the turbocharger support assembly and making any necessary adjustments. —Inspecting the fuel hose assembly for any signs of damage and, if necessary, replacing with a serviceable part. —Inspecting the turbocharger support assembly for any signs of damage and, if necessary, repairing or replacing with a serviceable part. —Performing an engine run-up to check for any leaks. FAA's Determination

    We are proposing this SNPRM because we evaluated all the relevant information and determined the unsafe condition described previously is likely to exist or develop in other products of the same type design. Certain changes described above expand the scope of the NPRM (79 FR 31888, June 3, 2014). As a result, we have determined that it is necessary to reopen the comment period to provide additional opportunity for the public to comment on this SNPRM.

    Proposed Requirements of This SNPRM

    This SNPRM would require accomplishing the actions specified in the service information described previously, except as discussed under “Differences Between this Proposed AD and the Service Information.”

    Differences Between This SNPRM and the Service Information

    There are differences between the compliance times for the corrective actions in this proposed AD and those in the related service information.

    We based the compliance times in this proposed AD on risk analysis and cost impact to operators. There has only been one event of the reported incident in the operational history of Piper Model PA-31-350 airplanes. Cost was also a strong consideration due to the age of the fleet and the number of airplanes still in service.

    The one-time inspection required in this proposed AD is very inexpensive and requires minimal time to accomplish. It is expected that almost all airplanes in service can be cleared with a single inspection, and no additional actions or costs would be incurred by the vast majority of the fleet.

    We determined that a single inspection with any necessary corrective actions is an adequate terminating action for the unsafe condition. The risk related to future maintenance on the fuel line would be mitigated by the related service information and awareness from this proposed AD.

    Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this proposed AD affects 773 airplanes of U.S. registry.

    We estimate the following costs to comply with this proposed AD:

    Estimated Costs Action Labor cost Parts cost Cost per
  • product
  • Cost on U.S. operators
    Inspect for proper clearance between the fuel hose assembly and the turbocharger support assembly .5 work-hour × $85 per hour = $85 N/A $42.50 $32,852.50 Inspect the fuel hose assembly for evidence of leaking, cracking, chafing, and any other sign of damage .5 work-hour × $85 per hour = $42.50 N/A 42.50 32,852.50 Inspect the turbocharger support assembly for evidence of chafing and any other sign of damage .5 work-hour × $85 per hour = $42.50 N/A 42.50 32,852.50 Engine run-up/leak check 1 work-hour × $85 = $85 (.5 work hour per engine) N/A 85.00 65,705.00

    We estimate the following costs to do any necessary follow-on actions that will be required based on the results of the inspection. We have no way of determining the number of airplanes that might need these corrective actions.

    On-Condition Costs Action Labor cost Parts cost Cost per
  • product
  • Adjust routing of fuel hose assembly for proper clearance between the fuel hose assembly and the turbocharger support assembly 5.5 work-hours × $85 per hour = $467.50 N/A $467.50 Replace Piper fuel pump inlet hose assembly, part number 39995-34 (2 per airplane) 1 work-hour × $85 per hour = $85 $1,068 1,153.00 Replace Lycoming turbocharger support assembly, part number LW-18302 (2 per airplane) 24 work-hours × $85 per hour = $2,040 12,874 14,914.00
    Authority for This Rulemaking

    Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety. Subtitle I, section 106, describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. “Subtitle VII: Aviation Programs” describes in more detail the scope of the Agency's authority.

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

    Regulatory Findings

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

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

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

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

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

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

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

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

    The Proposed Amendment

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

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

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

    § 39.13 [Amended]
    2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new airworthiness directive (AD): Piper Aircraft, Inc.: FAA-2014-0338; Directorate Identifier 2014-CE-010-AD. (a) Comments Due Date

    We must receive comments by March 11, 2016.

    (b) Affected ADs

    None.

    (c) Applicability

    This AD applies to Piper Aircraft, Inc. Model PA-31-350 airplanes, serial numbers 31-5001 through 31-5004, 31-7305005 through 31-8452024, and 31-8253001 through 31-8553002, certificated in any category, that are equipped with the following engines and fuel pump hose assemblies:

    Table 1 to Paragraph (c) of This AD—Applicable Engines and Fuel Pump Hose Assemblies Engine Manufacturer's hose name Manufacturer's part No. (P/N) Hose description TIO-540-J2B (right wing) Hose Assembly—Fuel Piper 39995-034 Inlet fuel hose to engine fuel pump. LTIO-540-J2B (left wing) Hose, Fuel pump to Injector Lycoming LW-12877-6S142 Exit fuel hose from engine fuel pump. TIO540-J2BD (right wing) Hose, Fuel pump to Injector Lycoming LW-12877-6S142 Exit fuel hose from engine fuel pump. LTIO-540-J2BD (left wing) Hose Assembly—Fuel Piper 39995-034 Inlet fuel hose to engine fuel pump. (d) Subject

    Joint Aircraft System Component (JASC)/Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 73: Engine Fuel and Control.

    (e) Unsafe Condition

    This AD was prompted by a report of an engine fire caused by a leak in the fuel pump inlet hose. We are issuing this AD to correct the unsafe condition on these products.

    (f) Compliance

    Comply with this AD within the compliance times specified in paragraphs (g)(1) through (j)(2) of this AD, unless already done.

    (g) Ensure Proper Clearance Between the Fuel Hose Assembly and the Turbocharger Support Assembly

    (1) Within the next 60 hours time-in-service (TIS) after the effective date of this AD or within the next 6 months after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs first, inspect to determine the clearance between the inlet and exit fuel hose assemblies listed in table 1 to paragraph (c) of this AD, and each turbocharger support assembly, Lycoming P/N LW-18302. There should be a minimum 3/16-inch clearance. Do the inspection following the INSTRUCTIONS section of Piper Aircraft, Inc. Service Bulletin No. 1257A, dated August 4, 2015.

    (2) Before further flight after the inspection required in paragraph (g)(1) of this AD, if the measured clearance is less than 3/16-inch, make all necessary adjustments to make the clearance a minimum of 3/16-inch between the inlet and exit fuel hose assemblies listed in table 1 to paragraph (c) of this AD and each turbocharger support assembly, Lycoming P/N LW-18302, following the INSTRUCTIONS section of Piper Aircraft, Inc. Service Bulletin No. 1257A, dated August 4, 2015.

    (h) Visually Inspect the Fuel Hose Assembly and Replace if Necessary

    (1) Within the next 60 hours TIS after the effective date of this AD or within the next 6 months after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs first, visually inspect the inlet and exit fuel hose assemblies listed in table 1 to paragraph (c) of this AD for evidence of leaking, cracking, chafing, and any other sign of damage. Do the inspection following the INSTRUCTIONS section of Piper Aircraft, Inc. Service Bulletin No. 1257A, dated August 4, 2015.

    (2) Before further flight after the inspection required in paragraph (h)(1) of this AD, if any evidence of leaking, cracking, chafing, or any other sign of damage is found in any inlet or exit fuel host assembly listed in table 1 to paragraph (c) of this AD, replace the fuel hose assembly with a serviceable part. Do the replacement following the INSTRUCTIONS section of Piper Aircraft, Inc. Service Bulletin No. 1257A, dated August 4, 2015.

    (i) Visually Inspect the Turbocharger Support Assembly and Replace if Necessary

    (1) Within the next 60 hours TIS after the effective date of this AD or within the next 6 months after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs first, visually inspect each turbocharger support assembly, Lycoming P/N LW-18302, for evidence of chafing and any other signs of damage. Do the inspection following the INSTRUCTIONS section of Piper Aircraft, Inc. Service Bulletin No. 1257A, dated August 4, 2015.

    (2) Before further flight after the inspection required in paragraph (i)(1) of this AD, if any evidence of chafing or any other sign of damage is found on any turbocharger support assembly, replace Lycoming P/N LW-18302 with a serviceable part. Do the replacement following the INSTRUCTIONS section of Piper Aircraft, Inc. Service Bulletin No. 1257A, dated August 4, 2015.

    (j) Engine Run-Up

    (1) If any fuel line component was adjusted or replaced during any actions required in paragraphs (g)(1) through (i)(2) of this AD, before further flight, perform an engine run-up on the ground to check for leaks. Do the engine run-up following the INSTRUCTIONS section of Piper Aircraft, Inc. Service Bulletin No. 1257A, dated August 4, 2015.

    (2) If any leaks found during the engine run-up required in paragraph (j)(1) of this AD emanate from any fuel line component adjusted, repaired, or replaced during any actions required in paragraphs (g)(1) through (i)(2) of this AD, before further flight, take all necessary corrective actions following the INSTRUCTIONS section of Piper Aircraft, Inc. Service Bulletin No. 1257A, dated August 4, 2015.

    (k) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs)

    (1) The Manager, Atlanta Aircraft Certification Office (ACO), FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. In accordance with 14 CFR 39.19, send your request to your principal inspector or local Flight Standards District Office, as appropriate. If sending information directly to the manager of the ACO, send it to the attention of the person identified in the Related Information section of this AD.

    (2) Before using any approved AMOC, notify your appropriate principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight standards district office/certificate holding district office.

    (l) Related Information

    (1) For more information about this AD, contact Gary Wechsler, Aerospace Engineer, FAA, Atlanta ACO, 1701 Columbia Avenue, College Park, Georgia 30337; telephone: (404) 474-5575; fax: (404) 474-5606; email: [email protected]

    (2) For service information identified in this AD, contact Piper Aircraft, Inc., 926 Piper Drive, Vero Beach, Florida 32960; telephone: (772) 567-4361; fax: (772) 978-6573; Internet: www.piper.com/home/pages/Publications.cfm. You may review copies of the referenced service information at the FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Kansas City, Missouri 64106. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call (816) 329-4148.

    Issued in Kansas City, Missouri, on January 16, 2016. Melvin Johnson, Acting Manager, Small Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01380 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA-2016-1363; Directorate Identifier 2015-CE-040-AD] RIN 2120-AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. Airplanes AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Transportation (DOT).

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

    SUMMARY:

    We propose to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. Models MU-2B-30, MU-2B-35, MU-2B-36, MU-2B-36A, and MU-2B-60 airplanes. This proposed AD results from mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) originated by an aviation authority of another country to identify and correct an unsafe condition on an aviation product. The MCAI describes the unsafe condition as reports of cracks found in the attach fittings of the main landing gear oleo strut. We are issuing this proposed AD to require actions to address the unsafe condition on these products.

    DATES:

    We must receive comments on this proposed AD by March 11, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may send comments by any of the following methods:

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

    Fax: (202) 493-2251.

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

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

    For service information identified in this proposed AD, contact Mitsubishi Heavy Industries America, Inc., c/o Turbine Aircraft Services, Inc., 4550 Jimmy Doolittle Drive, Addison, Texas 75001; telephone: (972) 248-3108, ext. 209; fax: (972) 248-3321; Internet: http://mu-2aircraft.com. You may review this referenced service information at the FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Kansas City, Missouri 64106. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call (816) 329-4148.

    Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2016-1363; or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this proposed AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for the Docket Office (telephone (800) 647-5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Andrew McAnaul, Aerospace Engineer, FAA, ASW-143 (c/o San Antonio MIDO), 10100 Reunion Place, Suite 650, San Antonio, Texas 78216; phone: (210) 308-3365; fax: (210) 308-3370; email: [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Comments Invited

    We invite you to send any written relevant data, views, or arguments about this proposed AD. Send your comments to an address listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include “Docket No. FAA-2016-1363; Directorate Identifier 2015-CE-040-AD” at the beginning of your comments. We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of this proposed AD. We will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend this proposed AD because of those comments.

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

    Discussion

    The Japan Civil Aviation Bureau (JCAB), which is the aviation authority for Japan, has issued AD No. TCD-8595-2015, dated July 1, 2015 (referred to after this as “the MCAI”), to correct an unsafe condition for certain Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI) Models MU-2B-30, MU-2B-35, and MU-2B-36 airplanes. You may examine the MCAI on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating it in Docket No. FAA-2016-1363.

    We have received reports of seven failures of the main landing gear oleo strut attach fitting on certain MHI Models MU-2B-30, MU-2B-35, MU-2B-36, MU-2B-36A, and MU-2B-60 airplanes. Investigation revealed that the failures resulted from improper lubrication and/or hard landings, which caused cracks to develop in the main landing gear oleo strut attach fitting.

    Japan is the State of Design for MHI Models MU-2B-30, MU-2B-35, and MU-2B-36, which the MCAI AD applies to, and the United States is the State of Design for MHI Models MU-2B-36A and MU-2B-60 airplanes.

    Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. has issued MU-2 Service Bulletin No. 243, dated June 30, 2015, and MU-2 Service Bulletin No. 105/32-017, dated September 29, 2015. These service bulletins describe procedures for visually inspecting the lugs of the oleo attach fittings on both sides for cracks, and if any visible cracks are found, replacing with a new fitting. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. has also issued MU-2 Service News JCAB T.C.: No. 171, FAA T.C.: No. 124/32-011, dated April 27, 2012, and MU-2 Service News JCAB T.C.: No. 176, FAA T.C.: No. 128/32-013, dated July 18, 2013. This service information specifies doing repetitive ultrasound inspections of the main landing gear oleo upper attach fittings for cracks and ensuring proper lubrication of the main landing gear oleo fitting. All the related service information is reasonably available because the interested parties have access to it through their normal course of business or by the means identified in the ADDRESSES section of this NPRM.

    FAA's Determination and Requirements of the Proposed AD

    This product has been approved by the aviation authority of another country, and is approved for operation in the United States. Pursuant to our bilateral agreement with this State of Design Authority, they have notified us of the unsafe condition described in the MCAI and service information referenced above. We are proposing this AD because we evaluated all information and determined the unsafe condition exists and is likely to exist or develop on other products of the same type design.

    Differences Between This Proposed AD and the MCAI

    We have determined that the repetitive visual inspections specified in the MCAI are not adequate for detecting cracks in the main landing gear oleo strut attach fitting. Repetitive ultrasonic inspections of the main landing gear oleo strut attach fitting have been added into the maintenance requirement manual for these airplanes, which is not considered mandatory in the FAA's airworthiness regulatory system. Therefore, we are proposing to incorporate that requirement through the rulemaking process.

    Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this proposed AD will affect 95 products of U.S. registry. We also estimate that it would take about 5 work-hours per product to comply with the visual inspection requirement of this proposed AD. The average labor rate is $85 per work-hour.

    Based on these figures, we estimate the cost of the visual inspection requirements of this proposed AD on U.S. operators to be $40,375, or $425 per product.

    We also estimate that it would take about 3 work-hours per product to comply with the ultrasound inspection requirements of this proposed AD. The average labor rate is $85 per work-hour.

    Based on these figures, we estimate the cost of the ultrasound inspection requirements of this proposed AD on U.S. operators to be $24,225, or $255 per product.

    Owner/operators have the option to do an ultrasound inspection in lieu of the required visual inspection.

    In addition, we estimate that any necessary follow-on actions would take about 24 work-hours and require parts costing $5,220, for a cost of $7,260 per product to replace the left-hand main landing gear oleo strut. We have no way of determining the number of products that may need this action.

    In addition, we also estimate that any necessary follow-on actions would take about 45 work-hours and require parts costing $5,220, for a cost of $9,045 per product to replace the right-hand main landing gear oleo strut. We have no way of determining the number of products that may need this action.

    Authority for This Rulemaking

    Title 49 of the United States Code specifies the FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety. Subtitle I, section 106, describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. “Subtitle VII: Aviation Programs,” describes in more detail the scope of the Agency's authority.

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

    Regulatory Findings

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

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

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

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

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

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

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

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

    The Proposed Amendment

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

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

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

    § 39.13 Amended]
    2. The FAA amends § 39.13 by adding the following new AD: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd.: Docket No. FAA-2016-1363; Directorate Identifier 2015-CE-040-AD. (a) Comments Due Date

    We must receive comments by March 11, 2016.

    (b) Affected ADs

    None.

    (c) Applicability

    This AD applies to Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. Models MU-2B-30, MU-2B-35, MU-2B-36 airplanes, serial numbers 502 through 696, except 652 and 661, and Models MU-2B-36A and MU-2B-60 airplanes, serial numbers 661SA, and 697SA through 1569SA, certificated in any category.

    (d) Subject

    Air Transport Association of America (ATA) Code 32: Landing Gear.

    (e) Reason

    This AD was prompted by mandatory continuing airworthiness information (MCAI) originated by an aviation authority of another country to identify and correct an unsafe condition on an aviation product. The MCAI describes the unsafe condition as reports of cracks found in the fittings of the main landing gear oleo strut. We are issuing this proposed AD to prevent failure of the main landing gear oleo strut attach fitting, which could cause the landing gear to fail and result in loss of control.

    (f) Actions and Compliance

    Unless already done, do the following actions:

    (1) Within the next 100 hours time-in-service (TIS) after the effective date of this AD or within the next 6 months after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs first, do a visual inspection of the main landing gear oleo upper attach fittings for cracks. Do the inspection following the INSTRUCTIONS section in Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. MU-2 Service Bulletin No. 243, dated June 30, 2015, and the INSTRUCTIONS section in Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. MU-2 Service Bulletin No. 105/32-017, dated September 29, 2015, as applicable.

    (2) Before further flight after the inspection required in paragraph (f)(1) of this AD, if no signs of cracks are found, lubricate the pin assembly attached to the main landing gear oleo attach fitting as specified in Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. MU-2 Service News JCAB T.C.: No. 171, FAA T.C.: No. 124/32-011, dated April 27, 2012.

    (3) Within the next 100 hours TIS after doing the initial visual inspection required in paragraph (f)(1) of this AD or within the next 12 months after doing the initial visual inspection required in paragraph (f)(1) of this AD, whichever occurs first, do an ultrasound inspection of the main landing gear oleo upper attach fittings for cracks as specified in Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. MU-2 Service News JCAB T.C.: No. 176, FAA T.C.: No. 128/32-013, dated July 18, 2013. This ultrasound inspection may also be done in place of the visual inspection required in paragraph (f)(1) of this AD if done within the next 100 hours TIS after the effective date of this AD or within the next 6 months after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs first. Repetitively thereafter inspect every 600 hours TIS or 36 months, whichever occurs first, and any time a hard landing or overweight landing occurs.

    (4) Before further flight after any inspection required in paragraph (f)(3) of this AD, if no signs of cracks are found, lubricate the pin assembly attached to the main landing gear oleo attach fitting as specified in Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. MU-2 Service News JCAB T.C.: No. 171, FAA T.C.: No. 124/32-011, dated April 27, 2012, and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. MU-2 Service News JCAB T.C.: No. 176, FAA T.C.: No. 128/32-013, dated July 18, 2013.

    (5) Before further flight after any inspection required in paragraph (f)(1) and (f)(3) of this AD where cracks are found, replace the main landing gear oleo upper attach fittings following the INSTRUCTIONS section in Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. MU-2 Service Bulletin No. 243, dated June 30, 2015, and the INSTRUCTIONS sections in Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. MU-2 Service Bulletin No. 105/32-017, dated September 29, 2015, as applicable. After replacement, continue with the repetitive ultrasound inspection requirements of paragraph (f)(3) of this AD.

    (g) Other FAA AD Provisions

    The following provisions also apply to this AD:

    (1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, Standards Office, FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. Send information to ATTN: Andrew McAnaul, Aerospace Engineer, FAA, ASW-143 (c/o San Antonio MIDO), 10100 Reunion Place, Suite 650, San Antonio, Texas 78216; phone: (210) 308-3365; fax: (210) 308-3370; email: [email protected]. Before using any approved AMOC on any airplane to which the AMOC applies, notify your appropriate principal inspector (PI) in the FAA Flight Standards District Office (FSDO), or lacking a PI, your local FSDO.

    (2) Airworthy Product: For any requirement in this AD to obtain corrective actions from a manufacturer or other source, use these actions if they are FAA-approved. Corrective actions are considered FAA-approved if they are approved by the State of Design Authority (or their delegated agent). You are required to assure the product is airworthy before it is returned to service.

    (h) Related Information

    Refer to MCAI Japan Civil Aviation Bureau (JCAB) AD No. TCD-8585-2015, dated July 1, 2015, for related information. You may examine the MCAI on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2016-1363. For service information related to this AD, contact Mitsubishi Heavy Industries America, Inc., c/o Turbine Aircraft Services, Inc., 4550 Jimmy Doolittle Drive, Addison, Texas 75001; telephone: (972) 248-3108, ext. 209; fax: (972) 248-3321; Internet: http://mu-2aircraft.com. You may review this referenced service information at the FAA, Small Airplane Directorate, 901 Locust, Kansas City, Missouri 64106. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call (816) 329-4148.

    Issued in Kansas City, Missouri, on January 16, 2016. Melvin Johnson, Acting Manager, Small Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01381 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2015-4133; Airspace Docket No. 15-ANM-27] Proposed Revocation of Class D Airspace; Vancouver, WA AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

    SUMMARY:

    This action proposes to remove Class D airspace at Pearson Field, Vancouver, WA. FAA Joint Order 7400.2K states that non-towered airports requiring a surface area will be designated Class E. Class E surface area airspace was established on December 10, 2015. The FAA is proposing this action due to the lack of an operating air traffic control tower at Pearson Field Airport, Vancouver, WA.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before March 11, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Send comments on this proposal to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590; telephone (202) 366-9826. You must identify FAA Docket No. FAA-2015-4133; Airspace Docket No. 15-ANM-27, at the beginning of your comments. You may also submit comments through the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov. You may review the public docket containing the proposal, any comments received, and any final disposition in person in the Dockets Office between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The Docket Office (telephone 1-800-647-5527), is on the ground floor of the building at the above address.

    FAA Order 7400.9Z, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, and subsequent amendments can be viewed online at http://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/publications/. For further information, you can contact the Airspace Policy Group, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 29591; telephone: 202-267-8783. The Order is also available for inspection at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of FAA Order 7400.9Z at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to http://www.archives.gov/federal_register/code_of_federal-regulations/ibr_locations.html.

    FAA Order 7400.9, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, is published yearly and effective on September 15.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Steve Haga, Federal Aviation Administration, Operations Support Group, Western Service Center, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057; telephone (425) 203-4563.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Authority for This Rulemaking

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

    Comments Invited

    Interested parties are invited to participate in this proposed rulemaking by submitting such written data, views, or arguments, as they may desire. Comments that provide the factual basis supporting the views and suggestions presented are particularly helpful in developing reasoned regulatory decisions on the proposal. Comments are specifically invited on the overall regulatory, aeronautical, economic, environmental, and energy-related aspects of the proposal. Communications should identify both docket numbers and be submitted in triplicate to the address listed above. Commenters wishing the FAA to acknowledge receipt of their comments on this notice must submit with those comments a self-addressed, stamped postcard on which the following statement is made: “Comments to Docket No. FAA-2015-4133; Airspace Docket No. 15-ANM-27.” The postcard will be date/time stamped and returned to the commenter.

    Availability of NPRMs

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

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

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

    Availability and Summary of Documents Proposed for Incorporation by Reference

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

    The Proposal

    The FAA is proposing an amendment to Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) Part 71 by removing Class D airspace at Pearson Field Airport, Vancouver, WA. FAA Joint Order 7400.2K states that if non-towered airports requiring a surface area, the airspace will be designated Class E. There is no operating control tower at Pearson Field Airport, Vancouver, WA, which would remove the necessity of the Class D airspace.

    Class D airspace designations are published in paragraph 5000 of FAA Order 7400.9Y, dated August 6, 2014, and effective September 15, 2014, which is incorporated by reference in 14 CFR 71.1. The Class D airspace designations listed in this document will be published subsequently in the Order.

    Regulatory Notices and Analyses

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

    Environmental Review

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

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 71

    Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air).

    The Proposed Amendment

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

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

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

    § 71.1 [Amended]
    2. The incorporation by reference in 14 CFR 71.1 of FAA Order 7400.9Z, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 6, 2015, and effective September 15, 2015, is amended as follows: Paragraph 5000 Class D Airspace. ANM WA D Vancouver, WA [Removed] Issued in Seattle, Washington, on January 19, 2016. Mindy Wright, Acting Manager, Operations Support Group, Western Service Center.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01415 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY Internal Revenue Service 26 CFR Part 1 [REG-134122-15] RIN 1545-BN09 Special Enrollment Examination User Fee for Enrolled Agents AGENCY:

    Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Treasury.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking and notice of public hearing.

    SUMMARY:

    This document contains proposed amendments to the regulation relating to the user fee for the special enrollment examination to become an enrolled agent. The charging of user fees is authorized by the Independent Offices Appropriations Act (IOAA) of 1952. This document also contains a notice of public hearing on this proposed regulation. The proposed regulation affects individuals taking the enrolled agent special enrollment examination.

    DATES:

    Written or electronic comments must be received by February 24, 2016. Requests to speak and outlines of topics to be discussed at the public hearing scheduled for February 25, 2016, must be received by February 24, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Send submissions to: CC:PA:LPD:PR (REG-134122-15), Room 5203, Internal Revenue Service, P.O. Box 7604, Ben Franklin Station, Washington, DC 20044. Submissions may be hand-delivered between the hours of 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. to CC:PA:LPD:PR (REG-134122-15), Courier's Desk, Internal Revenue Service, 1111 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC, or sent via the Federal eRulemaking Portal at www.regulations.gov (IRS REG-134122-15). The public hearing will be held in the IRS Auditorium, Internal Revenue Building, 1111 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Concerning this proposed regulation, Jonathan R. Black, (202) 317-6845; concerning submissions of comments and/or requests for a hearing, Regina Johnson (202) 317-6901 (not toll-free numbers).

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background and Explanation of Provisions

    Section 330 of title 31 of the United States Code authorizes the Secretary of the Treasury to regulate the practice of representatives before the Treasury Department. Pursuant to section 330 of title 31, the Secretary has published regulations governing practice before the IRS in 31 CFR part 10 and reprinted the regulations as Treasury Department Circular No. 230 (Circular 230). Circular 230 is administered by the IRS Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR).

    Section 10.4(a) of Circular 230 authorizes the IRS to grant status as enrolled agents to individuals who demonstrate special competence in tax matters by passing a written examination (Enrolled Agent Special Enrollment Examination (EA-SEE)) administered by, or under the oversight of, the IRS and who have not engaged in any conduct that would justify suspension or disbarment under Circular 230. Starting in 2006, the IRS engaged the services of a third-party contractor to develop and administer the EA-SEE.

    After becoming enrolled, an enrolled agent must, as provided in § 10.6(d), renew enrollment every three years to maintain active enrollment and to be able to practice before the IRS. To qualify for renewal, an enrolled agent must certify the completion of the continuing education requirements set forth in § 10.6(e). There are currently approximately 55,600 enrolled agents.

    The EA-SEE is comprised of three parts, which are offered in a testing period that begins each May 1 and ends the last day of the following February. The EA-SEE is not available in March and April, during which period it is updated to reflect changes in the relevant law. When it determined the current fee, the IRS estimated that individuals would take 34,000 parts of the EA-SEE each year. That number of parts has not been reached in any year. In the testing periods beginning in 2012, 2013, and 2014, the contractor administered approximately 18,900, 19,500, and 22,400 parts of the EA-SEE, respectively. During the testing period beginning May 2016, the IRS estimates that individuals taking the EA-SEE will take 20,000 parts. More information on the EA-SEE, including content, scoring, and how to register, can be found on the IRS Web site at www.irs.gov/Tax-Professionals/Enrolled-Agents/.

    The Independent Offices Appropriations Act (IOAA) of 1952, which is codified at 31 U.S.C. 9701, authorizes agencies to prescribe regulations that establish charges for services they provide. These charges include user fees. The charges must be fair and must be based on the costs to the government, the value of the service to the recipient, the public policy or interest served, and other relevant facts. The IOAA provides that regulations implementing user fees are subject to policies prescribed by the President, which are currently set forth in the Office of Management and Budget Circular A-25, 58 FR 38142 (July 15, 1993) (the OMB Circular). The OMB Circular encourages user fees for government-provided services that confer benefits on identifiable recipients over and above those benefits received by the general public. Under the OMB Circular, an agency that seeks to impose a user fee for government-provided services must calculate the full cost of providing those services. In general, a user fee should be set at an amount that allows the agency to recover the full cost of providing the special service, unless the Office of Management and Budget grants an exception.

    As discussed above, Circular 230 § 10.4(a) provides that IRS will grant enrolled agent status to an applicant if the applicant, among other things, demonstrates special competence in tax matters by written examination. The EA-SEE is the written examination that tests special competence in tax matters for purposes of that provision, and an applicant must pass all parts of the EA-SEE to be granted enrolled agent status through written examination. The IRS confers a benefit on individuals who take the EA-SEE beyond those that accrue to the general public by providing them with an opportunity to demonstrate special competence in tax matters by passing a written examination and therefore satisfying one of the requirements for becoming an enrolled agent under Circular 230 § 10.4(a). Because the opportunity to take the EA-SEE is a special benefit, IRS charges a user fee to take the examination.

    Pursuant to the guidelines in the OMB Circular, the IRS has calculated its cost of providing examination services under the enrolled agent program. The proposed user fee will be implemented under the authority of the IOAA and the OMB Circular and will recover the full cost of overseeing the program. The current user fee is $11 to take each part of the EA-SEE. The contractor who administers the EA-SEE also charges individuals taking the EA-SEE an additional fee for its services. For the May 2015 to February 2016 testing period, the contractor's fee is $98 for each part of the EA-SEE.

    Increased costs incurred by the IRS to implement the EA-SEE program require an increase in the EA-SEE user fee. These increased costs are primarily attributable to the following: (1) The cost for background checks required under Publication 4812, “Contractor Security Controls,” for individuals working at the contractor's testing centers increased by $270,000 per year; (2) the IRS estimates that the contractor will administer 14,000 fewer parts of the EA-SEE per year than the estimated number used to calculate the $11 fee, and the total costs are therefore being recovered from fewer individuals; and (3) the IRS's costs of verifying the contractor's compliance with the information technology security requirements necessary to protect the personally identifiable information of individuals taking the EA-SEE have increased, because Publication 4812 has strengthened those requirements.

    In addition, IRS original estimates of the cost to oversee the contract did not cover all the work the IRS now performs. The proposed fee more accurately accounts for the time and personnel necessary to oversee the development and administration of the EA-SEE and to ensure the contractor complies with the terms of its contract. IRS costs for oversight include costs associated with: (1) Review and approval of materials used by the contractor in developing the EA-SEE; (2) review of surveys of existing enrolled agents, which help to determine the topics to be covered in the EA-SEE; (3) composition of potential EA-SEE questions in coordination with the contractor's external tax law experts; (4) Office of Chief Counsel review and revision of the potential questions for legal accuracy; and (5) analysis of the answers and raw scores of a testing population to determine what should be a passing score.

    Further, IRS personnel ensure the contractor's compliance with its contract by reviewing the work of the contractor using an annual Work Breakdown Structure—a project management tool—and reviewing and verifying that the contractor is in compliance with its Quality Assurance Plan regarding customer satisfaction and accuracy. The IRS incurs additional costs associated with resolution of test-related issues such as cheating incidents, appeals regarding scores, refund requests, and customer service complaints that have not been resolved at the contractor level.

    Taking into account the full amount of these costs, the user fee for the EA-SEE is proposed to be increased to $99 per part.

    Special Analyses

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

    Pursuant to the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. chapter 6), it is hereby certified that this proposed regulation, if adopted, would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities because it primarily affects individuals who take the enrolled agent examination and does not directly affect small entities. Accordingly, a regulatory flexibility analysis is not required. Pursuant to section 7805(f) of the Internal Revenue Code, this notice of proposed rulemaking has been submitted to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration for comment on its impact on small business.

    Comments and Public Hearing

    Before this proposed regulation is adopted as a final regulation, consideration will be given to any comments that are submitted timely to the IRS as prescribed in the preamble under the ADDRESSES section. The Treasury Department and the IRS request comments on all aspects of the proposed regulation. All comments submitted will be made available at www.regulations.gov or upon request.

    A public hearing has been scheduled for February 25, 2016, beginning at 10:00 a.m. in the IRS Auditorium, Internal Revenue Building, 1111 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC. Due to building security procedures, visitors must enter at the Constitution Avenue entrance. All visitors must present photo identification to enter the building. Because of access restrictions, visitors will not be admitted beyond the immediate entrance area more than 30 minutes before the hearing starts. For information about having your name placed on the building access list to attend the hearing, see the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this preamble.

    The rules of 26 CFR 601.601(a)(3) apply to the hearing. Persons who wish to present oral comments at the hearing must submit written or electronic comments and an outline of the topics to be discussed and the time to be devoted to each topic by February 24, 2016. A period of 10 minutes will be allocated to each person for making comments.

    An agenda showing the scheduling of the speakers will be prepared after the deadline for receiving outlines has passed. Copies of the agenda will be available free of charge at the hearing.

    Drafting Information

    The principal author of this regulation is Jonathan R. Black of the Office of the Associate Chief Counsel (Procedure and Administration).

    List of Subjects in 26 CFR Part 300

    Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, User fees.

    Proposed Amendments to the Regulations

    Accordingly, 26 CFR part 300 is proposed to be amended as follows:

    PART 300—USER FEES Paragraph 1. The authority citation for part 300 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    31 U.S.C. 9701.

    Par. 2. Section 300.4 is amended by revising paragraphs (b) and (d) to read as follows:
    § 300.4 Enrolled agent special enrollment examination fee.

    (b) Fee. The fee for taking the enrolled agent special enrollment examination is $99 per part, which is the cost to the government for overseeing the development and administration of the examination and does not include any fees charged by the administrator of the examination.

    (d) Effective/applicability date. This section applies on and after the date of publication of a Treasury decision adopting this rule as a final regulation in the Federal Register.

    Karen M. Schiller, Acting Deputy Commissioner for Services and Enforcement.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01629 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4830-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS 38 CFR Part 60 RIN 2900-AP45 Fisher Houses and Other Temporary Lodging AGENCY:

    Department of Veterans Affairs.

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) proposes to amend its regulations concerning Fisher House and other temporary lodging furnished by VA while a veteran is experiencing an episode of care at a VA medical facility. Such lodging is generally furnished to veterans' relatives, close friends, and caregivers at no cost, because VA's experience has shown that veterans' treatment outcomes are improved by having loved ones nearby. The proposed rule updates current regulations and better describes the application process for this lodging. The proposed rule generally reflects current VA policy and practice.

    DATES:

    Comment Date: Comments must be received by VA on or before March 28, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Written comments may be submitted by email through http://www.regulations.gov; by mail or hand-delivery to Director, Regulation Policy and Management (02REG), Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue NW., Room 1068, Washington, DC 20420; or by fax to (202) 273-9026. Comments should indicate that they are submitted in response to “RIN 2900-AP45, Fisher Houses and Other Temporary Lodging.” Copies of comments received will be available for public inspection in the Office of Regulation Policy and Management, Room 1068, between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday (except holidays). Please call (202) 461-4902 for an appointment. (This is not a toll-free number.) In addition, during the comment period, comments may be viewed online through the Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) at http://www.regulations.gov.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Michael T. Kilmer, Chief Consultant, Care Management and Social Work Services (10P4C), Veterans Health Administration, Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20420, (202) 461-6780. (This is not a toll-free number.)

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    VA's program for providing temporary lodging for certain individuals is authorized by section 1708 of title 38, United States Code (U.S.C.). Under section 1708, VA “may furnish [certain] persons . . . with temporary lodging in a Fisher [H]ouse or other appropriate facility in connection with the examination, treatment, or care of a veteran under [chapter 17].” This authority to provide temporary lodging assists VA in providing appropriate treatment and care to veterans because patients often respond better when they are accompanied by relatives, close friends, or caregivers. Thus, providing temporary lodging is an important element of a veteran's treatment. VA implemented its authority under section 1708 in 38 CFR part 60. However, the current regulation no longer accurately describes the process by which VA approves requests for Fisher House or other temporary lodging. This proposed rule would amend the regulations to describe the current process.

    The application process for Fisher House or other temporary lodging is described in 38 CFR 60.15. We propose to amend § 60.15, because the application process has substantially changed. Section 60.15(a) currently states that VA Form 10-0408A is “the application for Fisher House and other temporary lodging.” That section also gives instructions for obtaining and filing the specified form. Although we will continue to accept applications submitted on Form 10-0408A until this proposed regulation takes effect, VA has discontinued the use of this form in favor of a process that requires the requester to contact specified personnel directly for capture in the requester's electronic health record of all information that would have been included on the form.

    This process has already improved the efficiency of evaluating requests for Fisher House and other temporary housing for several reasons. VA facilities cannot practicably store paper forms, and electronic processing will save time and money compared to scanning paper forms into a veteran's medical record. Additionally, because the consult will become part of the veteran's electronic health record, VA staff can view it when future requests for temporary housing are received. This will save time for the veteran, who will need to provide only updated information to VA staff, rather than having to complete a new form. Accordingly, we propose to replace the existing language of § 60.15(a) by deleting the reference to Form 10-0408A and replacing it with a description of the new process.

    Although VA continues to accept applications on Form 10-0408A, requests for Fisher House or other temporary lodging will no longer involve a separate formal application process once the present proposed rule becomes effective. Accordingly, VA believes that deleting references to an “application” or “applications” and replacing them with “request” or “requests” throughout part 60 more accurately reflects the process involved. We also propose to amend § 60.15(a) to describe the electronic consult request process. However, we would retain all other criteria in part 60 for processing requests that are received under the new CPRS-based process.

    Effect of Rulemaking

    The Code of Federal Regulations, as proposed to be revised by this proposed rulemaking, would represent the exclusive legal authority on this subject. No contrary rules or procedures would be authorized. All VA guidance would be read to conform with this proposed rulemaking if possible or, if not possible, such guidance would be superseded by this rulemaking.

    Paperwork Reduction Act

    This proposed rule contains no new provisions constituting a collection of information under the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501-3521). VA Form 10-0408A, referred to in current 30 CFR 60.15(a) was previously approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under control number 2900-0630, but as stated above, its use has been discontinued.

    Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Secretary hereby certifies that this proposed rule would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities as they are defined in the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601-612. This proposed rule would not cause a significant economic impact on health care providers, suppliers, or entities because the proposed rule would apply only to patients receiving care at VA facilities. Therefore, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 605(b), this proposed rulemaking is exempt from the initial and final regulatory flexibility analysis requirements of 5 U.S.C. 603 and 604.

    Executive Orders 12866 and 13563

    Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess the costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, when regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public health and safety effects, and other advantages; distributive impacts; and equity). Executive Order 13563 (Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review) emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, reducing costs, harmonizing rules, and promoting flexibility. Executive Order 12866 (Regulatory Planning and Review) defines a “significant regulatory action,” which requires review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), unless OMB waives such review, as “any regulatory action that is likely to result in a rule that may: (1) Have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more or adversely affect in a material way the economy, a sector of the economy, productivity, competition, jobs, the environment, public health or safety, or State, local, or tribal governments or communities; (2) Create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with an action taken or planned by another agency; (3) Materially alter the budgetary impact of entitlements, grants, user fees, or loan programs or the rights and obligations of recipients thereof; or (4) Raise novel legal or policy issues arising out of legal mandates, the President's priorities, or the principles set forth in this Executive Order.”

    VA has examined the economic, interagency, budgetary, legal, and policy implications of this regulatory action, and it has been determined not to be a significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866.

    Unfunded Mandates

    The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 requires, at 2 U.S.C. 1532, that agencies prepare an assessment of anticipated costs and benefits before issuing any rule that may result in an expenditure by State, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100 million or more (adjusted annually for inflation) in any one year. This proposed rule would have no such effect on State, local, and tribal governments, or on the private sector.

    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance

    The Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance program number and title for this rule are as follows: 64.005, Grants to States for Construction of State Home Facilities; 64.007, Blind Rehabilitation Centers; 64.008, Veterans Domiciliary Care; 64.009, Veterans Medical Care Benefits; 64.010, Veterans Nursing Home Care; 64.011, Veterans Dental Care; 64.012, Veterans Prescription Service; 64.013, Veterans Prosthetic Appliances; 64.014, Veterans State Domiciliary Care; 64.015, Veterans State Nursing Home Care; 64.016, Veterans State Hospital Care; 64.018, Sharing Specialized Medical Resources; 64.019, Veterans Rehabilitation Alcohol and Drug Dependence; 64.022, Veterans Home Based Primary Care; and 64.024, VA Homeless Providers Grant and Per Diem Program.

    Signing Authority

    The Secretary of Veterans Affairs, or designee, approved this document and authorized the undersigned to sign and submit the document to the Office of the Federal Register for publication electronically as an official document of the Department of Veterans Affairs. Robert D. Snyder, Interim Chief of Staff, Department of Veterans Affairs, approved this document on January 20, 2016, for publication.

    List of Subjects in 38 CFR Part 60

    Health care, Housing, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Travel, Veterans.

    Dated: January 21, 2016. Michael P. Shores, Chief Impact Analyst, Office of Regulation Policy & Management, Office of the General Counsel, Department of Veterans Affairs.

    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, VA proposes to amend 38 CFR part 60 as follows:

    PART 60—FISHER HOUSES AND OTHER TEMPORARY HOUSING 1. The authority citation for part 60 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    38 U.S.C. 501, 1708, and as noted in specific sections.

    2. Amend § 60.10 by removing in the word “application” each time it appears in the section and adding in its place the word “request.” 3. Amend § 60.15 by revising paragraphs (a), (b)(1), (b)(6) and (b)(7) to read as follows:
    § 60.15 Process for requesting Fisher House or other temporary lodging.

    (a) Submitting requests. An accompanying individual requesting Fisher House or other temporary lodging must contact directly the provider, social worker, case manager, or Fisher House Manager at the veteran's VA health care facility of jurisdiction. Upon receiving a request, VA will determine the accompanying individual's eligibility for the requested housing, as provided in paragraph (b)(5) of this section.

    (b) Processing requests. (1) Requests for all temporary housing are generally processed in the order that they are received by VA, and temporary lodging is then granted on a first come, first served basis; however, in extraordinary circumstances, such as imminent death, critical injury, or organ donation, requests may be processed out of order.

    (6) If VA denies a request for one type of lodging, such as at a Fisher House, the request will be considered for other temporary lodging and vice versa, if the requester is eligible.

    (7) If VA denies a request for temporary lodging, VA will refer the request to a VA social worker at the VA health care facility of jurisdiction to determine if other arrangements can be made.

    [FR Doc. 2016-01491 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 8320-01-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R08-OAR-2013-0556, FRL-9941-54-Region 8] Promulgation of State Implementation Plan Revisions; Infrastructure Requirements for the 2008 Lead, 2008 Ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2, and 2012 PM2.5 National Ambient Air Quality Standards; Montana AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to approve elements of State Implementation Plan (SIP) revisions from the State of Montana to demonstrate the State meets infrastructure requirements of the Clean Air Act (Act or CAA) for the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) promulgated for ozone on March 12, 2008, lead (Pb) on October 15, 2008, nitrogen dioxide (NO2) on January 22, 2010, sulfur dioxide (SO2) on June 2, 2010 and fine particulate matter (PM2.5) on December 14, 2012. EPA is also proposing to approve 110(a)(2)(D)(ii) for the 1997 and 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS. EPA is proposing to conditionally approve CAA section 110(a)(2)(C) and (J) with regard to PSD and element 3 of 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) for the 2008 ozone, 2008 Pb, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2, and 2006 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. EPA is proposing to disapprove element 4 of CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) for the 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2, and 2006 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. EPA is proposing to approve SIP revisions the State submitted to update Montana's PSD program and provisions regarding state boards. Section 110(a) of the CAA requires that each state submit a SIP for the implementation, maintenance, and enforcement of each NAAQS promulgated by EPA.

    DATES:

    Written comments must be received on or before February 25, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R08-OAR-2013-0556 at http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or removed from Regulations.gov. The EPA may publish any comment received to its public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and should include discussion of all points you wish to make. The EPA will generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of the primary submission (i.e. on the web, cloud, or other file sharing system). For additional submission methods, the full EPA public comment policy, information about CBI or multimedia submissions, and general guidance on making effective comments, please visit http://www2.epa.gov/dockets/commenting-epa-dockets.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Abby Fulton, Air Program, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Region 8, Mail Code 8P-AR, 1595 Wynkoop Street, Denver, Colorado 80202-1129, (303) 312-6563, [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. General Information What should I consider as I prepare my comments for EPA?

    1. Submitting Confidential Business Information (CBI). Do not submit CBI to EPA through http://www.regulations.gov or email. Clearly mark the part or all of the information that you claim to be CBI. For CBI information on a disk or CD ROM that you mail to EPA, mark the outside of the disk or CD ROM as CBI and then identify electronically within the disk or CD ROM the specific information that is claimed as CBI. In addition to one complete version of the comment that includes information claimed as CBI, a copy of the comment that does not contain the information claimed as CBI must be submitted for inclusion in the public docket. Information so marked will not be disclosed except in accordance with procedures set forth in 40 CFR part 2.

    2. Tips for preparing your comments. When submitting comments, remember to:

    • Identify the rulemaking by docket number and other identifying information (subject heading, Federal Register volume, date, and page number);

    • Follow directions and organize your comments;

    • Explain why you agree or disagree;

    • Suggest alternatives and substitute language for your requested changes;

    • Describe any assumptions and provide any technical information and/or data that you used;

    • If you estimate potential costs or burdens, explain how you arrived at your estimate in sufficient detail to allow for it to be reproduced;

    • Provide specific examples to illustrate your concerns, and suggest alternatives;

    • Explain your views as clearly as possible, avoiding the use of profanity or personal threats; and,

    • Make sure to submit your comments by the comment period deadline identified.

    II. Background

    On March 12, 2008, EPA promulgated a new NAAQS for ozone, revising the levels of the primary and secondary 8-hour ozone standards from 0.08 parts per million (ppm) to 0.075 ppm (73 FR 16436, March 27, 2008). Subsequently, on October 15, 2008, EPA revised the level of the primary and secondary Pb NAAQS from 1.5 micrograms per cubic meter (μg/m3) to 0.15 μg/m3 (73 FR 66964, Nov. 12, 2008). On January 22, 2010, EPA promulgated a new 1-hour primary NAAQS for NO2 at a level of 100 parts per billion (ppb) while retaining the annual standard of 53 ppb. The 2010 NO2 NAAQS is expressed as the three-year average of the 98th percentile of the annual distribution of daily maximum 1-hour average concentrations. The secondary NO2 NAAQS remains unchanged at 53 ppb (75 FR 6474, Feb. 9, 2010). On June 2, 2010, the EPA promulgated a revised primary SO2 standard at 75 ppb, based on a three-year average of the annual 99th percentile of one-hour daily maximum concentrations (75 FR 35520, June 22, 2010). Finally, on December 14, 2012, the EPA promulgated a revised annual PM2.5 standard by lowering the level to 12.0 μg/m3 and retaining the 24-hour PM2.5 standard at a level of 35 μg/m3 (78 FR 3086, Jan. 15, 2013).

    EPA promulgated a revised NAAQS for PM2.5 on October 17, 2006, tightening the level of the 24-hour standard to 35 µg/m3 and retaining the level of the annual PM2.5 standard at 15 µg/m3. EPA approved the CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) portion of Montana's infrastructure SIP for this NAAQS on July 30, 2013 (78 FR 45869). As discussed below, CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) covers elements 1 and 2 of “interstate transport.” In this proposed action, EPA is addressing only interstate transport elements 3 and 4 from CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) for the 2006 PM2.5, 2008 ozone, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. We are not addressing elements 1 and 2 for the 2008 ozone, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS in this action. These elements will be addressed in a later rulemaking action.1

    1 EPA proposed approval of elements 1 and 2 of Montana's SIP for the 2008 ozone NAAQS in a notice published November 23, 2015 (80 FR 72937).

    Under sections 110(a)(1) and (2) of the CAA, states are required to submit infrastructure SIPs to ensure their SIPs provide for implementation, maintenance and enforcement of the

    NAAQS. These submissions must contain any revisions needed for meeting the applicable SIP requirements of section 110(a)(2), or certifications that their existing SIPs for PM2.5, ozone, Pb, NO2, and SO2 already meet those requirements. EPA highlighted this statutory requirement in an October 2, 2007, guidance document entitled “Guidance on SIP Elements Required Under Sections 110(a)(1) and (2) for the 1997 8-hour Ozone and PM2.5 National Ambient Air Quality Standards” (2007 Memo). On September 25, 2009, EPA issued an additional guidance document pertaining to the 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS entitled “Guidance on SIP Elements Required Under Sections 110(a)(1) and (2) for the 2006 24-Hour Fine Particle (PM2.5) National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS)” (2009 Memo), followed by the October 14, 2011, “Guidance on Infrastructure SIP Elements Required Under Sections 110(a)(1) and (2) for the 2008 Lead (Pb) National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS)” (2011 Memo). Most recently, EPA issued “Guidance on Infrastructure State Implementation Plan (SIP) Elements under Clean Air Act Sections 110(a)(1) and (2)” on September 13, 2013 (2013 Memo).

    III. What is the Scope of this Rulemaking?

    EPA is acting upon the SIP submissions from Montana that address the infrastructure requirements of CAA sections 110(a)(1) and 110(a)(2) for the 2008 ozone, 2008 Pb, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2, and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. The requirement for states to make a SIP submission of this type arises out of CAA section 110(a)(1). Pursuant to section 110(a)(1), states must make SIP submissions “within three years (or such shorter period as the Administrator may prescribe) after the promulgation of a national primary ambient air quality standard (or any revision thereof),” and these SIP submissions are to provide for the “implementation, maintenance, and enforcement” of such NAAQS. The statute directly imposes on states the duty to make these SIP submissions, and the requirement to make the submissions is not conditioned upon EPA taking any action other than promulgating a new or revised NAAQS. Section 110(a)(2) includes a list of specific elements that “[e]ach such plan” submission must address.

    EPA has historically referred to these SIP submissions made for the purpose of satisfying the requirements of CAA sections 110(a)(1) and 110(a)(2) as “infrastructure SIP” submissions. Although the term “infrastructure SIP” does not appear in the CAA, EPA uses the term to distinguish this particular type of SIP submission from submissions that are intended to satisfy other SIP requirements under the CAA, such as “nonattainment SIP” or “attainment plan SIP” submissions to address the nonattainment planning requirements of part D of title I of the CAA; “regional haze SIP” submissions required by EPA rule to address the visibility protection requirements of CAA section 169A; and nonattainment new source review (NSR) permit program submissions to address the permit requirements of CAA, title I, part D.

    Section 110(a)(1) addresses the timing and general requirements for infrastructure SIP submissions, and section 110(a)(2) provides more details concerning the required contents of these submissions. The list of required elements provided in section 110(a)(2) contains a wide variety of disparate provisions, some of which pertain to required legal authority, some of which pertain to required substantive program provisions, and some of which pertain to requirements for both authority and substantive program provisions.2 EPA therefore believes that while the timing requirement in section 110(a)(1) is unambiguous, some of the other statutory provisions are ambiguous. In particular, EPA believes that the list of required elements for infrastructure SIP submissions provided in section 110(a)(2) contains ambiguities concerning what is required for inclusion in an infrastructure SIP submission.

    2 For example: Section 110(a)(2)(E)(i) provides that states must provide assurances that they have adequate legal authority under state and local law to carry out the SIP; section 110(a)(2)(C) provides that states must have a SIP-approved program to address certain sources as required by part C of title I of the CAA; and section 110(a)(2)(G) provides that states must have legal authority to address emergencies as well as contingency plans that are triggered in the event of such emergencies.

    Examples of some of these ambiguities and the context in which EPA interprets the ambiguous portions of section 110(a)(1) and 110(a)(2) are discussed at length in our notice of proposed rulemaking: Promulgation of State Implementation Plan Revisions; Infrastructure Requirements for the 1997 and 2006 PM2.5, 2008 Lead, 2008 Ozone, and 2010 NO2 National Ambient Air Quality Standards; South Dakota (79 FR 71040 Dec. 1, 2014) under “III. What is the Scope of this Rulemaking?”

    With respect to certain other issues, EPA does not believe that an action on a state's infrastructure SIP submission is necessarily the appropriate type of action in which to address possible deficiencies in a state's existing SIP. These issues include: (i) Existing provisions related to excess emissions from sources during periods of startup, shutdown, or malfunction (SSM) that may be contrary to the CAA and EPA's policies addressing such excess emissions; (ii) existing provisions related to “director's variance” or “director's discretion” that may be contrary to the CAA because they purport to allow revisions to SIP-approved emissions limits while limiting public process or not requiring further approval by EPA; and (iii) existing provisions for Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) programs that may be inconsistent with current requirements of EPA's “Final NSR Improvement Rule,” 67 FR 80186, Dec. 31, 2002, as amended by 72 FR 32526, June 13, 2007 (“NSR Reform”).

    IV. What infrastructure elements are required under sections 110(a)(1) and (2)?

    CAA section 110(a)(1) provides the procedural and timing requirements for SIP submissions after a new or revised NAAQS is promulgated. Section 110(a)(2) lists specific elements the SIP must contain or satisfy. These infrastructure elements include requirements such as modeling, monitoring, and emissions inventories, which are designed to assure attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS. The elements that are the subject of this action are listed below.

    • 110(a)(2)(A): Emission limits and other control measures.

    • 110(a)(2)(B): Ambient air quality monitoring/data system.

    • 110(a)(2)(C): Program for enforcement of control measures.

    • 110(a)(2)(D): Interstate transport.

    • 110(a)(2)(E): Adequate resources and authority, conflict of interest, and oversight of local governments and regional agencies.

    • 110(a)(2)(F): Stationary source monitoring and reporting.

    • 110(a)(2)(G): Emergency powers.

    • 110(a)(2)(H): Future SIP revisions.

    • 110(a)(2)(J): Consultation with government officials; public notification; and PSD and visibility protection.

    • 110(a)(2)(K): Air quality modeling/data.

    • 110(a)(2)(L): Permitting fees.

    • 110(a)(2)(M): Consultation/participation by affected local entities.

    A detailed discussion of each of these elements is contained in the next section.

    Two elements identified in section 110(a)(2) are not governed by the three year submission deadline of section 110(a)(1) and are therefore not addressed in this action. These elements relate to part D of Title I of the CAA, and submissions to satisfy them are not due within three years after promulgation of a new or revised NAAQS, but rather are due at the same time nonattainment area plan requirements are due under section 172. The two elements are: (1) Section 110(a)(2)(C) to the extent it refers to permit programs (known as “nonattainment NSR”) required under part D, and (2) section 110(a)(2)(I), pertaining to the nonattainment planning requirements of part D. As a result, this action does not address infrastructure elements related to the nonattainment NSR portion of section 110(a)(2)(C) or related to 110(a)(2)(I). Furthermore, EPA interprets the CAA section 110(a)(2)(J) provision on visibility as not being triggered by a new NAAQS because the visibility requirements in part C, title 1 of the CAA are not changed by a new NAAQS.

    V. How did Montana address the infrastructure elements of sections 110(a)(1) and (2)?

    The Montana Department of Environmental Quality (Department or MDEQ) submitted certification of Montana's infrastructure SIP for the 2008 Pb NAAQS on December 19, 2011, 2008 ozone NAAQS on January 3, 2013, 2010 NO2 NAAQS on June 4, 2013, 2010 SO2 NAAQS on July 15, 2013, and 2012 PM2.5 on December 17, 2015. Montana's infrastructure certifications demonstrate how the State, where applicable, has plans in place that meet the requirements of section 110 for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. These plans reference the current Administrative Rules of Montana (ARM) and Montana Code Annotated (MCA). These submittals are available within the electronic docket for today's proposed action at www.regulations.gov. The ARM and MCA referenced in the submittals are publicly available at http://www.mtrules.org/ and http://leg.mt.gov/bills/mca_toc/index.htm. Montana's SIP, air pollution control regulations, and statutes that have been previously approved by EPA and incorporated into the Montana SIP can be found at 40 CFR 52.1370.

    VI. Analysis of the State Submittals

    1. Emission limits and other control measures: Section 110(a)(2)(A) requires SIPs to include enforceable emission limitations and other control measures, means, or techniques (including economic incentives such as fees, marketable permits, and auctions of emissions rights), as well as schedules and timetables for compliance as may be necessary or appropriate to meet the applicable requirements of this Act.

    Specific control measures adopted in Board of Environmental Review (BER) orders and multiple SIP-approved state air quality regulations within the ARM and cited in Montana's certifications provide enforceable emission limitations and other control measures, means of techniques, schedules for compliance, and other related matters necessary to meet the requirements of the CAA section 110(a)(2)(A) for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS, subject to the following clarifications.

    First, this infrastructure element does not require the submittal of regulations or emission limitations developed specifically for attaining the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. Montana's certifications (contained within this docket) generally list provisions and enforceable control measures within its SIP which regulate pollutants through various programs, including its stationary source permit program which requires sources to demonstrate emissions will not cause or contribute to a violation of any NAAQS (ARM 17.8.749). This suffices, in the case of Montana, to meet the requirements of section 110(a)(2)(A) for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS.

    Second, as previously discussed, EPA is not proposing to approve or disapprove any existing state rules with regard to director's discretion or variance provisions. A number of states, including Montana, have such provisions which are contrary to the CAA and existing EPA guidance (52 FR 45109, Nov. 24, 1987), and the agency plans to take action in the future to address such state regulations. In the meantime, EPA encourages any state having a director's discretion or variance provision which is contrary to the CAA and EPA guidance to take steps to correct the deficiency as soon as possible.

    Finally, in this action, EPA is also not proposing to approve or disapprove any existing state provision with regard to excess emissions during SSM of operations at a facility. A number of states, including Montana, have SSM provisions which are contrary to the CAA and existing EPA guidance 3 and the agency is addressing such state regulations separately (80 FR 33840, June 12, 2015).

    3 Steven Herman, Assistant Administrator for Enforcement and Compliance Assurance, and Robert Perciasepe, Assistant Administrator for Air and Radiation, Memorandum to EPA Air Division Directors, “State Implementation Plans (SIPs): Policy Regarding Emissions During Malfunctions, Startup, and Shutdown.” (September 20, 1999).

    Therefore, EPA is proposing to approve Montana's infrastructure SIP for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS with respect to the general requirement in section 110(a)(2)(A) to include enforceable emission limitations and other control measures, means, or techniques to meet the applicable requirements of this element.

    2. Ambient air quality monitoring/data system: Section 110(a)(2)(B) requires SIPs to provide for establishment and operation of appropriate devices, methods, systems, and procedures necessary to “(i) monitor, compile, and analyze data on ambient air quality, and (ii) upon request, make such data available to the Administrator.”

    On an annual basis, the Department evaluates trends in industrial and economic development, meteorology, and population growth, and conducts other scientific, social, and geographic observations regarding areas of the State which may be adversely affected by the impact of criteria pollutants. The Department, with participation and input from local county air pollution control program staff and other interested persons, develops decisions regarding monitor type, location, and schedules for monitoring air quality in these hotspots. Montana's annual monitoring network plan (AMNP), is made available by the Department for public review and comment prior to submission to EPA. EPA approved 2015 network changes through an AMNP response letter (contained within the docket) mailed to the Department on November 25, 2015.

    Further, in accordance with 40 CFR 58.10, beginning in July 2008, and every five years thereafter, Montana develops a periodic network assessment to ensure the effective implementation of an adequate ambient air quality surveillance system. The periodic network assessment is made available by the Department for public review and comment prior to submission to EPA.

    Pursuant to its Quality Assurance Project Plans, the Department makes arrangements to operate and maintain federal reference monitors and establishes federally-approved protocols for sample collection, handling, and analysis. Air monitoring data is submitted to EPA's national “AIRS” database.

    The provisions in state law for the collection and analysis of ambient air quality data are contained in the MT CAA, 75-2-101 et seq., MCA, and specifically, 75-2-112, MCA, Powers and Responsibilities of Department.

    Montana's air monitoring programs and data systems meet the requirements of CAA section 110(a)(2)(B). Therefore, EPA is proposing to approve Montana's infrastructure SIP for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS with respect to the general requirements in section 110(a)(2)(B).

    3. Program for enforcement of control measures: Section 110(a)(2)(C) requires SIPs to include a program to provide for the enforcement of the measures described in subparagraph (A), and regulation of the modification and construction of any stationary source within the areas covered by the plan as necessary to assure NAAQS are achieved, including a permit program as required in parts C and D.

    To generally meet the requirements of section 110(a)(2)(C), the State is required to have SIP-approved PSD, nonattainment NSR, and minor NSR permitting programs adequate to implement the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. As explained elsewhere in this action, EPA is not evaluating nonattainment related provisions, such as the nonattainment NSR program required by part D of the Act. EPA is evaluating the State's PSD program as required by part C of the Act, and the State's minor NSR program as required by 110(a)(2)(C).

    PSD Requirements

    With respect to Elements (C) and (J), the EPA interprets the CAA to require each state to make an infrastructure SIP submission for a new or revised NAAQS that demonstrates that the air agency has a complete PSD permitting program meeting the current requirements for all regulated NSR pollutants. The requirements of Element D(i)(II) may also be satisfied by demonstrating the air agency has a complete PSD permitting program correctly addressing all regulated NSR pollutants. Montana has shown that it currently has a PSD program in place that covers all regulated NSR pollutants, including greenhouse gases (GHGs).

    On June 23, 2014, the United States Supreme Court issued a decision addressing the application of PSD permitting requirements to GHG emissions. Utility Air Regulatory Group v. Environmental Protection Agency, 134 S.Ct. 2427. The Supreme Court said that the EPA may not treat GHGs as an air pollutant for purposes of determining whether a source is a major source required to obtain a PSD permit. The Court also said that the EPA could continue to require that PSD permits, otherwise required based on emissions of pollutants other than GHGs (anyway sources) contain limitations on GHG emissions based on the application of Best Available Control Technology (BACT).

    In accordance with the Supreme Court decision, on April 10, 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (the D.C. Circuit) issued an amended judgment vacating the regulations that implemented Step 2 of the EPA's PSD and Title V Greenhouse Gas Tailoring Rule, but not the regulations that implement Step 1 of that rule. Step 1 of the Tailoring Rule covers sources that are required to obtain a PSD permit based on emissions of pollutants other than GHGs. Step 2 applied to sources that emitted only GHGs above the thresholds triggering the requirement to obtain a PSD permit. The amended judgment preserves, without the need for additional rulemaking by the EPA, the application of the BACT requirement to GHG emissions from Step 1 or “anyway” sources. With respect to Step 2 sources, the D.C. Circuit's amended judgment vacated the regulations at issue in the litigation, including 40 CFR 51.166(b)(48)(v), “to the extent they require a stationary source to obtain a PSD permit if greenhouse gases are the only pollutant (i) that the source emits or has the potential to emit above the applicable major source thresholds, or (ii) for which there is a significant emission increase from a modification.”

    The EPA is planning to take additional steps to revise federal PSD rules in light of the Supreme Court opinion and subsequent D.C. Circuit judgment. Some states have begun to revise their existing SIP-approved PSD programs in light of these court decisions, and some states may prefer not to initiate this process until they have more information about the planned revisions to EPA's PSD regulations. The EPA is not expecting states to have revised their PSD programs in anticipation of the EPA's planned actions to revise its PSD program rules in response to the court decisions.

    At present, the EPA has determined the State's SIP is sufficient to satisfy Elements (C), (D)(i)(II) element 3, and (J) with respect to GHGs. This is because the PSD permitting program previously approved by the EPA into the SIP continues to require that PSD permits issued to “anyway sources” contain limitations on GHG emissions based on the application of BACT. The SIP contains the PSD requirements for applying the BACT requirement to greenhouse gas emissions from “anyway sources” that are necessary at this time. The application of those requirements is not impeded by the presence of other previously-approved provisions regarding the permitting of Step 2 sources. Accordingly, the Supreme Court decision and subsequent D.C. Circuit judgment do not prevent the EPA's approval of Montana's infrastructure SIP as to the requirements of Elements (C), (D)(i)(II) element 3 and (J).

    In our July 22, 2011 rulemaking titled “Implementation Plan Revisions; Infrastructure Requirements for the 1997 8-Hour Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standard; Montana” (76 FR 43918) we disapproved the Montana infrastructure SIP for the 1997 ozone NAAQS for elements (C) and (J) on the basis that Montana's SIP-approved PSD program did not properly regulate nitrogen oxides as an ozone precursor. For the same reason, we later disapproved Montana's infrastructure SIP for the 1997 and 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS for elements (C) and (J) in our July 30, 2013 rulemaking titled “Promulgation of State Implementation Plan Revisions; Infrastructure requirements for the 1997 and 2006 P.M.2.5 National Ambient Air Quality Standards; Montana” (78 FR 45864). On January 29, 2015, (80 FR 4793), we approved a Montana SIP revision that addressed the PSD requirements of the Phase 2 Ozone Implementation Rule promulgated in 2005 (70 FR 71612). As a result, the approved Montana PSD program meets current requirements for ozone.

    Finally, we evaluate the PSD program with respect to current requirements for PM2.5. In particular, on May 16, 2008, EPA promulgated the rule, “Implementation of the New Source Review Program for Particulate Matter Less Than 2.5 Micrometers (PM2.5)” (73 FR 28321) and on October 20, 2010 EPA promulgated the rule, “Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) for Particulate Matter Less Than 2.5 Micrometers (PM2.5)—Increments, Significant Impact Levels (SILs) and Significant Monitoring Concentration (SMC)” (75 FR 64864). EPA regards adoption of these PM2.5 rules as a necessary requirement when assessing a PSD program for the purposes of element (C).

    On January 4, 2013, the U.S. Court of Appeals, in Natural Resources Defense Council v. EPA, 706 F.3d 428 (D.C. Cir.), issued a judgment that remanded EPA's 2007 and 2008 rules implementing the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS. The court ordered EPA to “repromulgate these rules pursuant to Subpart 4 consistent with this opinion.” Id. at 437. Subpart 4 of part D, Title 1 of the CAA establishes additional provisions for particulate matter nonattainment areas.

    The 2008 implementation rule addressed by the court decision, “Implementation of New Source Review (NSR) Program for Particulate Matter Less Than 2.5 Micrometers (PM2.5),” (73 FR 28321, May 16, 2008), promulgated NSR requirements for implementation of PM2.5 in nonattainment areas (nonattainment NSR) and attainment/unclassifiable areas (PSD). As the requirements of Subpart 4 only pertain to nonattainment areas, EPA does not consider the portions of the 2008 Implementation rule that address requirements for PM2.5 attainment and unclassifiable areas to be affected by the court's opinion. Moreover, EPA does not anticipate the need to revise any PSD requirements promulgated in the 2008 Implementation rule in order to comply with the court's decision. Accordingly, EPA's proposed approval of Montana's infrastructure SIP as to elements C or J with respect to the PSD requirements promulgated by the 2008 Implementation rule does not conflict with the court's opinion.

    The court's decision with respect to the nonattainment NSR requirements promulgated by the 2008 Implementation rule also does not affect EPA's action on the present infrastructure action. EPA interprets the Act to exclude nonattainment area requirements, including requirements associated with a nonattainment NSR program, from infrastructure SIP submissions due three years after adoption or revision of a NAAQS. Instead, these elements are typically referred to as nonattainment SIP or attainment plan elements, which would be due by the dates statutorily prescribed under subpart 2 through 5 under part D, extending as far as 10 years following designations for some elements.

    The second PSD requirement for PM2.5 is contained in EPA's October 20, 2010 rule, “Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) for Particulate Matter Less Than 2.5 Micrometers (PM2.5)—Increments, Significant Impact Levels (SILs) and Significant Monitoring Concentration (SMC)” (75 FR 64864). EPA regards adoption of the PM2.5 increments as a necessary requirement when assessing a PSD program for the purposes of element (C).

    On August 21, 2012, Montana submitted revisions to EPA which addressed the requirements of the 2008 PM2.5 NSR Implementation Rule and the 2010 Increment Rule. Portions of the 2010 Increment rule were vacated by the Federal Courts (Sierra Club v. EPA). EPA subsequently revised the affected NSR-PSD rules accordingly (78 FR 73698, Dec. 9, 2013). On March 24, 2015, Montana submitted revisions which addressed the Court's decision and supersedes and replaces these aspects of the August 21, 2012 submittal. These submittals are available within this docket.

    In this action, we propose to approve the necessary portions of Montana's August 21, 2012 and March 24, 2015 submittals to reflect the 2008 PM2.5 Implementation Rule and the 2010 PM2.5 Increment Rule; specifically 40 CFR part 166, paragraphs (b)(14)(i), (ii), (iii), (b)(15)(i), (ii), (b)(23)(i), (b)(49)(i), (vi), and paragraph (c)(1). EPA is proposing to approve revisions to: ARM 17.8.801(3), 17.8.801(21), 17.8.801(27), 17.8.804(1), ARM 17.8.818(7)(a)(iv)-(xi), 17.8.822(9), 17.8.822(10), 17.8.822(11), 17.8.822(12), and 17.8.825(4) from the August 21, 2012 submittal. We propose no action on revisions to ARM 17.8.818(7)(a)(iii) and 17.8.820(2) because they were superseded by the March 24, 2015 submittal. We are not proposing to act on any other portions of the August 21, 2012 submittal.

    EPA is proposing to approve revisions from the March 24, 2015 submittal to ARM 17.8.818(7)(a)(iii) on the condition that the State adopts and submits specific revisions within one year of EPA's final action on these infrastructure submittals; specifically to remove the phrase “24-hour average” in ARM 17.8.818(7)(a)(iii) .4 We propose no action on ARM 17.8.820(2) because it deletes a section of the ARM which was never approved into the State's SIP. The submitted revisions make Montana's PSD program up to date with respect to current requirements for PM2.5.

    4See “Section 128 and 2012 PM2.5 Cover Letter and PSD Commitment Letter” submitted to EPA on December 17, 2015, contained within this docket.

    EPA is proposing to approve Montana's SIP for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS with respect to the requirement in section 110(a)(2)(C) to include a PSD permit program in the SIP as required by part C of the Act on the condition that the State adopts and submits revisions to ARM 17.8.818(7)(a)(iii) as previously described.

    Minor NSR

    The State has a SIP-approved minor NSR program, adopted under section 110(a)(2)(C) of the Act. The minor NSR program was originally approved by EPA on March 22, 1972. Since approval of the minor NSR program, the State and EPA have relied on the program to assure that new and modified sources not captured by the major NSR permitting programs do not interfere with attainment and maintenance of the NAAQS.

    EPA is proposing to approve Montana's infrastructure SIP for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS with respect to the general requirement in section 110(a)(2)(C) to include a program in the SIP that regulates the enforcement, modification, and construction of any stationary source as necessary to assure that the NAAQS are achieved.

    4. Interstate Transport: The interstate transport provisions in CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i) (also called “good neighbor” provisions) require each state to submit a SIP that prohibits emissions that will have certain adverse air quality effects in other states. CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i) identifies four distinct elements related to the impacts of air pollutants transported across state lines. The two elements under 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) require SIPs to contain adequate provisions to prohibit any source or other type of emissions activity within the state from emitting air pollutants that will (element 1) contribute significantly to nonattainment in any other state with respect to any such national primary or secondary NAAQS, and (element 2) interfere with maintenance by any other state with respect to the same NAAQS. The two elements under 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) require SIPs to contain adequate provisions to prohibit emissions that will interfere with measures required to be included in the applicable implementation plan for any other state under part C (element 3) to prevent significant deterioration of air quality or (element 4) to protect visibility. In this action, EPA is addressing all four elements of CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i) with regard to the 2008 Pb and 2010 NO2 NAAQS. EPA is addressing only elements 3 and 4 of CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) for the 2008 ozone, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. We will also address elements 3 and 4 for the 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS, because EPA did not address these elements as part of the July 30, 2013 action in which we approved elements 1 and 2 for the 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS (78 FR 45869). We are not addressing elements 1 and 2 for the 2008 ozone 5 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS in this action. These elements will be addressed in a later rulemaking.

    5 EPA proposed approval of elements 1 and 2 of Montana's SIP for the 2008 ozone NAAQS in a notice published November 23, 2015 (80 FR 72937).

    A. Evaluation of Significant Contribution to Nonattainment and Interference With Maintenance 2008 Pb NAAQS

    Montana's analysis of potential interstate transport for the 2008 Pb NAAQS discussed the lack of sources with significant Pb emissions near the State's borders. Montana's analysis is available in the docket for this action.

    As noted in our 2011 Memo, there is a sharp decrease in Pb concentrations, at least in the coarse fraction, as the distance from a Pb source increases. For this reason, EPA found that the “requirements of subsection (2)(D)(i)(I) (prongs 1 and 2) could be satisfied through a state's assessment as to whether or not emissions from Pb sources located in close proximity to their state borders have emissions that impact the neighboring state such that they contribute significantly to nonattainment or interfere with maintenance in that state.” 6 In that guidance document, EPA further specified that any source appeared unlikely to contribute significantly to nonattainment unless it was located less than 2 miles from a state border and emitted at least 0.5 tons per year of Pb. Montana's 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) analysis specifically noted that there are no sources in the State that meet both of these criteria. EPA concurs with the State's analysis and conclusion that no Montana sources have the combination of Pb emission levels and proximity to nearby nonattainment or maintenance areas to contribute significantly to nonattainment in or interfere with maintenance by other states for this NAAQS. Montana's SIP is therefore adequate to ensure that such impacts do not occur. We are proposing to approve Montana's submission in that its SIP meets the requirements of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i) for the 2008 Pb NAAQS.

    6 2011 Memo, at pg 8.

    2010 NO2 NAAQS

    Montana's 2010 NO2 transport analysis for elements 1 and 2 of 110(a)(2)(D)(i) describes how sources in the State are subject to various permitting requirements. Montana asserts that these requirements prevent sources from emitting NO2 in amounts that would contribute significantly to nonattainment or interfere with maintenance of the NAAQS in other states. The State's analysis is available in the docket for this action.

    EPA concurs with the conclusion of Montana's 2010 NO2 transport analysis. Due to Montana's limited technical analysis, EPA considered additional factors before reaching this conclusion, specifically NO2 monitoring data from Montana and surrounding states. EPA notes that the highest monitored NO2 design values in each state bordering or near Montana are significantly below the NAAQS (see Table 1). This fact supports the State's contention that significant contribution to nonattainment or interference with maintenance of the NO2 NAAQS from Montana is unlikely. As shown in Table 1, the maximum design values in states bordering Montana are well below the 2010 NO2 NAAQS. In addition, no areas in the U.S. have been designated nonattainment for the 2010 NO2 NAAQS. As the states near Montana are not only attaining, but also having no trouble maintaining the NAAQS, there are no areas to which Montana could significantly contribute to nonattainment or interfere with maintenance of the 2010 NO2 NAAQS.

    7 Idaho's maximum design value was calculated using EPA's AirData Web site, at http://www.epa.gov/airquality/airdata/ad_rep_mon.html.

    Table 1—Highest Monitored 2010 NO2 NAAQS Design Values State 2012-2014 Design value % of NAAQS
  • (100 ppb)
  • Idaho 43 ppb 7 43 North Dakota 35 ppb 35 South Dakota 38 ppb 38 Wyoming 35 ppb 35 * Source: http://www.epa.gov/airtrends/values.html.

    In addition to the monitored levels of NO2 in states near Montana being well below the NAAQS, Montana's highest official design value from 2012-2014 was also significantly below this NAAQS (7 ppb).8

    8http://www.epa.gov/airtrends/values.html.

    Based on all of these factors, EPA concurs with the State's conclusion that Montana does not contribute significantly to nonattainment or interfere with maintenance of the 2010 NO2 NAAQS in other states. EPA is therefore proposing to determine that Montana's SIP includes adequate provisions to prohibit sources or other emission activities within the State from emitting NO2 in amounts that will contribute significantly to nonattainment in or interfere with maintenance by any other state with respect to the NO2 NAAQS.

    B. Evaluation of Interference With Measures To Prevent Significant Deterioration (PSD)

    With regard to the PSD portion of CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II), this requirement may be met by a state's confirmation in an infrastructure SIP submission that new major sources and major modifications in the state are subject to a comprehensive EPA-approved PSD permitting program in the SIP that applies to all regulated new source review (NSR) pollutants and that satisfies the requirements of EPA's PSD implementation rules.9 As noted in the discussion for infrastructure element (C) earlier in this notice, EPA is proposing to conditionally approve CAA section 110(a)(2) element (C) for Montana's infrastructure SIP for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2, and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS with respect to PSD requirements. As discussed in detail in that section, Montana's PSD program will meet the current structural requirements of 110(a)(2)(C) for PM2.5 on the condition that the State adopts and submits specific revisions within one year of EPA's final action on these infrastructure submittals to correct the language in ARM 17.8.818(7)(a)(iii). We are also proposing to conditionally approve Montana's infrastructure SIP as meeting the 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) element 3 (PSD) requirements for 2006 24-hour PM2.5 NAAQS.

    9 See 2013 Memo.

    As stated in the 2013 Memo, in-state sources not subject to PSD for any one or more of the pollutants subject to regulation under the CAA because they are in a nonattainment area for a NAAQS related to those particular pollutants may also have the potential to interfere with PSD in an attainment or unclassifiable area of another state. One way a state may satisfy element 3 with respect to these sources is by citing an air agency's EPA-approved nonattainment NSR provisions addressing any pollutants for which the state has designated nonattainment areas. Montana has a SIP-approved nonattainment NSR program which ensures regulation of major sources and major modifications in nonattainment areas, and therefore satisfies element 3 with regard to this requirement.10

    10 See ARM 17.8.901-906.

    EPA is proposing to conditionally approve the infrastructure SIP submission with regard to the requirements of element 3 of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i) for the 2006 24-hour PM2.5, 2008 Pb, 2008 Ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS.

    C. Evaluation of Interference With Measures To Protect Visibility

    The determination of whether the CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) requirement for visibility is satisfied is closely connected to EPA's regional haze program. Under the regional haze program, each state with a Class I area is required to submit a regional haze SIP with reasonable progress goals for each such area that provides for an improvement in visibility for the most impaired days and ensures no degradation of the best days. CAA section 169A.

    Because of the often significant impacts on visibility from the interstate transport of pollutants, we interpret the provisions of CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) described above as requiring states to include in their SIPs measures to prohibit emissions that would interfere with the reasonable progress goals set to protect Class I areas in other states. This is consistent with the requirements in the regional haze program which explicitly require each state to address its share of the emission reductions needed to meet the reasonable progress goals for surrounding Class I areas. 64 FR 35714, 35735 (July 1, 1999).

    Montana did not submit a regional haze SIP to EPA, which in turn required EPA to promulgate a federal implementation plan (FIP) to satisfy the regional haze requirements for the State. EPA finalized its regional haze FIP for Montana in a rule published September 18, 2012 (77 FR 57864). Several parties filed petitions for review of the Montana regional haze FIP. In Nat'l Parks Conservation Ass'n v. EPA, 788 F.3d 1134 (9th Cir. 2015), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit vacated and remanded to EPA certain portions of the regional haze FIP setting NOX and SO2 emission limits at two facilities in Montana. EPA is currently working to address the remand of these portions of the Montana regional haze FIP in accordance with the court's decision.

    In its 2008 ozone, 2010 SO2 and 2010 NO2 NAAQS infrastructure certifications, Montana asserted that each of these pollutants was “generally insignificant” related to impacts on visibility impairment, emitted in limited amounts in the state, and that significant impacts from each of these pollutants are “mostly located away” from state borders. In its February 10, 2010 certification for the 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS, the State did not directly address visibility impacts from Montana to other states, and instead generally addressed element 110(a)(2)(D)(i).

    In its 2008 Pb NAAQS certification, Montana cited the 2011 Memo in noting the general insignificance of Pb-related impacts on visibility impairment, and stated that significant impacts from Pb emissions from stationary sources are expected to be limited to short distances from the source. Montana affirmed that it did not contain sources with 0.5 tpy or greater lead emissions located within two miles of the State's border and therefore concluded that it met the requirements of 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) with respect to visibility for the 2008 Pb NAAQS.

    In its 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS certification, Montana asserted that their Visibility Plan and FIP, which is in place to satisfy requirements of the EPA Regional Haze Program (77 FR 57863, Sept. 18, 2012), demonstrate that sources in Montana do not interfere with visibility protection in other states. However, they acknowledge that, in accordance with EPA's 2013 infrastructure SIP guidance, a FIP cannot be relied upon to meet the requirements of element 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) related to visibility and therefore the requirements of element 4 are not met.

    EPA disagrees with the State's assertions that NO2, SO2 and ozone are generally insignificant in their impacts on visibility impairment. See 77 FR at 23995, 24053-54 (EPA determined in its regional haze FIP rulemaking that Montana emissions have impacts at Class I areas in other states). Montana's claim that significant impacts from these three pollutants are located away from state borders is conclusory and not supported by relevant information or analysis. As the State does not have a fully approved regional haze SIP, and has not otherwise demonstrated that its SIP satisfies the visibility requirement of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II), EPA proposes to disapprove this portion of Montana's SIP for the 2006 PM2.5, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2 and 2010 SO2 NAAQS. Because EPA in the Montana regional haze FIP has and will continue to address visibility impairment from Montana sources in Class I areas outside of the State, this disapproval will not require further action from the State, and does not create a new FIP obligation for EPA.

    Regarding the 2008 Pb NAAQS, EPA agrees that significant impacts from Pb emissions from stationary sources are expected to be limited to short distances from the source and most, if not all, Pb stationary sources are located at distances from Class I areas such that visibility impacts would be negligible. Further, when evaluating the extent to which Pb could impact visibility, EPA has found Pb-related visibility impacts insignificant (e.g., less than 0.10 percent).11 Montana does not have any major sources of Pb located within ten miles of a neighboring state's Class I area. EPA proposes to approve Montana's conclusion that it does not have any significant sources of lead emissions within 2 miles of its border and that it therefore does not have emissions of Pb that would interfere with the requirements of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) with respect to visibility.

    11 2013 Memo at 33.

    EPA agrees with Montana's assertion that its SIP does not satisfy the visibility requirements of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II) for the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. EPA proposes to disapprove this portion of the Montana SIP.

    5. Interstate and International transport provisions: CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(ii) requires SIPs to include provisions ensuring compliance with the applicable requirements of CAA sections 126 and 115 (relating to interstate and international pollution abatement). Specifically, CAA section 126(a) requires new or modified major sources to notify neighboring states of potential impacts from the source.

    Section 126(a) of the CAA requires notification to affected, nearby states of major proposed new (or modified) sources. Sections 126(b) and (c) pertain to petitions by affected states to the Administrator of the EPA (Administrator) regarding sources violating the “interstate transport” provisions of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i). Section 115 of the CAA similarly pertains to international transport of air pollution.

    As required by 40 CFR 51.166(q)(2)(iv), Montana's SIP-approved PSD program requires notice to states whose lands may be affected by the emissions of sources subject to PSD.12 This suffices to meet the notice requirement of section 126(a).

    12 See Administrative Rule of Montana (“ARM”) 17.8.826(2)(d).

    Montana has no pending obligations under sections 126(c) or 115(b); therefore, its SIP currently meets the requirements of those sections. In summary, the SIP meets the requirements of CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(ii), and EPA is therefore proposing approval of this element for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. EPA is also proposing to approve the Montana SIP as meeting the requirements of section 110(a)(2)(D)(ii) for the 1997 and 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS. Montana submitted an infrastructure certification generally addressing CAA section 110(a)(2)(D) for the 1997 and 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS on February 10, 2010.

    6. Adequate resources: Section 110(a)(2)(E)(i) requires states to provide necessary assurances that the state will have adequate personnel, funding, and authority under state law to carry out the SIP (and is not prohibited by any provision of federal or state law from carrying out the SIP or portion thereof). Section 110(a)(2)(E)(ii) also requires each state to comply with the requirements respecting state boards under CAA section 128. Section 110(a)(2)(E)(iii) requires states to “provide necessary assurances that, where the State has relied on a local or regional government, agency, or instrumentality for the implementation of any [SIP] provision, the State has responsibility for ensuring adequate implementation of such [SIP] provision.”

    a. Sub-Elements (i) and (iii): Adequate Personnel, Funding, and Legal Authority Under State Law To Carry Out Its SIP, and Related Issues

    The provisions contained in 75-2-102, MCA, 75-2-111, MCA, and 75-2-112, MCA, provide adequate authority for the State of Montana and the DEQ to carry out its SIP obligations with respect to the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS. The State receives sections 103 and 105 grant funds through its Performance Partnership Grant along with required state matching funds to provide funding necessary to carry out Montana's SIP requirements.

    With respect to section 110(a)(2)(E)(iii), the regulations cited by Montana in their certifications (75-2-111 and 75-2-112, MCA) and contained within this docket also provide the necessary assurances that the State has responsibility for adequate implementation of SIP provisions by local governments. Therefore, we propose to approve Montana's SIP as meeting the requirements of section 110(a)(2)(E)(i) and (E)(iii) for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS.

    b. Sub-Element (ii): State Boards

    Section 110(a)(2)(E)(ii) requires each state's SIP to contain provisions that comply with the requirements of section 128 of the CAA. That provision contains two explicit requirements: (i) That any board or body which approves permits or enforcement orders under the CAA shall have at least a majority of members who represent the public interest and do not derive a significant portion of their income from persons subject to such permits and enforcement orders; and (ii) that any potential conflicts of interest by members of such board or body or the head of an executive agency with similar powers be adequately disclosed.

    In our July 30, 2013 action, we disapproved Montana's February 10, 2010 infrastructure SIP submission for the 1997 and 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS for CAA Section 110(a)(2)(E)(ii) because the Montana SIP did not contain provisions meeting requirements of CAA section 128. On December 17, 2015, EPA received a submission from the State of Montana to address the requirements of section 128. The Montana BER approved new rule language on October 16, 2015. A copy of New Rule I (ARM 17.8.150), II (ARM 17.8.151), and III (ARM 17.8.152) is available within this docket. New Rule II Board Action addresses board composition requirements of section 128(a)(1) and New Rule III Reporting addresses conflict of interest requirements of section 128(a)(2). We propose to approve this new rule language as meeting the requirements of section 128 for the reasons explained in more detail below. Because this revision meets the requirements of section 128, we also propose to approve the State's infrastructure SIP submissions for element 110(a)(2)(E)(ii). The State made these infrastructure SIP submissions in connection with the 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS, but section 128 is not NAAQS-specific and once the State has met the requirements of section 128 that is sufficient for purposes of infrastructure SIP requirements for all NAAQS. If we finalize this proposed approval for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2, and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS, this will also resolve the prior disapproval for element 110(a)(2)(E)(ii) for the1997 and 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS.

    We are proposing to approve the State's December 17, 2015 SIP submission as meeting the requirements of section 128 because we believe that it complies with the statutory requirements and is consistent with EPA's guidance recommendations concerning section 128. In 1978, EPA issued a guidance memorandum recommending ways states could meet the requirements of section 128, including suggested interpretations of certain key terms in section 128.13 In this proposal notice, we discuss additional relevant aspects of section 128. We first note that, in the conference report on the 1977 amendments to the CAA, the conference committee stated, “[i]t is the responsibility of each state to determine the specific requirements to meet the general requirements of [section 128].” 14 This legislative history indicates that Congress intended states to have some latitude in adopting SIP provisions with respect to section 128, so long as states meet the statutory requirements of the section. We also note that Congress explicitly provided in section 128 that states could elect to adopt more stringent requirements, as long as the minimum requirements of section 128 are met.

    13 Memorandum from David O. Bickart, Deputy General Counsel, to Regional Air Directors, Guidance to States for Meeting Conflict of Interest Requirements of Section 128 (Mar. 2, 1978).

    14 H.R. Rep. 95-564 (1977), reprinted in 3 Legislative History of the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1977, 526-27 (1978).

    In implementing section 128, the EPA has identified a number of key considerations relevant to evaluation of a SIP submission. EPA has identified these considerations in the 1978 guidance and in subsequent rulemaking actions on SIP submissions relevant to section 128, whether as SIP revisions for this specific purpose or as an element of broader actions on infrastructure SIP submissions for one or more NAAQS.

    Each state must meet the requirements of section 128 through provisions that EPA approves into the state's SIP and are thus made federally enforceable. Section 128 explicitly mandates that each SIP “shall contain requirements” that satisfy subsections 128(a)(1) and 128(a)(2). A mere narrative description of state statutes or rules, or of a state's current or past practice in constituting a board or body and in disclosing potential conflicts of interest, is not a requirement contained in the SIP and does not satisfy the plain text of section 128.

    Subsection 128(a)(1) applies only to states that have a board or body that is composed of multiple individuals and that, among its duties, approves permits or enforcement orders under the CAA. It does not apply in states that have no such multi-member board or body that performs these functions, and where instead a single head of an agency or other similar official approves permits or enforcement orders under the CAA. This flows from the text of section 128, for two reasons. First, as subsection 128(a)(1) refers to a majority of members of the board or body in the plural, we think it reasonable to read subsection 128(a)(1) as not creating any requirements for an individual with sole authority for approving permits or enforcement orders under the CAA. Second, subsection 128(a)(2) explicitly applies to the head of an executive agency with “similar powers” to a board or body that approves permits or enforcement orders under the CAA, while subsection 128(a)(1) omits any reference to heads of executive agencies. We infer that subsection 128(a)(1) should not apply to heads of executive agencies who approve permits or enforcement orders.

    Subsection 128(a)(2) applies to all states, regardless of whether the state has a multi-member board or body that approves permits or enforcement orders under the CAA. Although the title of section 128 is “State boards,” the language of subsection 128(a)(2) explicitly applies where the head of an executive agency, rather than a board or body, approves permits or enforcement orders. In instances where the head of an executive agency delegates his or her power to approve permits or enforcement orders, or where statutory authority to approve permits or enforcement orders is nominally vested in another state official, the requirement to adequately disclose potential conflicts of interest still applies. In other words, EPA interprets section 128(a)(2) to apply to all states, regardless of whether a state board or body approves permits or enforcement orders under the CAA or whether a head of a state agency (or his/her delegates) performs these duties. Thus, all state SIPs must contain provisions that require adequate disclosure of potential conflicts of interest in order to meet the requirements of subsection 128(a)(2). The question of which entities or parties must be subject to such disclosure requirements must be evaluated by states and EPA in light of the specific facts and circumstances of each state's regulatory structure.

    A state may satisfy the requirements of section 128 by submitting for adoption into the SIP a provision of state law that closely tracks or mirrors the language of the applicable provisions of section 128. A state may take this approach in two ways. First, the state may adopt the language of subsections 128(a)(1) and 128(a)(2) verbatim. Under this approach, the state will be able to meet the continuing requirements of section 128 without any additional, future SIP revisions, even if the state adds or removes authority, either at the state level or local level, to individual or to boards or bodies to approve permits or enforcement orders under the CAA so long as the state continues to meet section 128 requirements.

    Second, the state may modify the language of subsections 128(a)(1) (if applicable) and 128(a)(2) to name the particular board, body, or individual official with approval authority. In this case, if the state subsequently modifies that authority, the state may have to submit a corresponding SIP revision to meet the continuing requirements of section 128. If the state chooses to not mirror the language of section 128, the state may adopt state statutes and/or regulations that functionally impose the same requirements as those of section 128, including definitions for key terms such as those recommended in EPA's 1978 guidance. While any of these approaches would meet the minimum requirements of section 128, the statute also explicitly authorizes states to adopt more stringent requirements, for example to impose additional requirements for recusal of board members from decisions, above and beyond the explicit board composition requirements. Although such recusal alone does not meet the requirements of section 128, states have the authority to require that over and above the explicit requirements of section 128. These approaches give states flexibility in implementing section 128, while still ensuring consistency with the statute.

    EPA has evaluated the New Rule I Definitions, II Board Action, and III Reporting (available within this docket) from the State in light of the requirements of section 128, these key considerations previously noted, and the recommendations in the 1978 guidance. The Montana Code creates a Board of Environmental Review (BER) which consists of seven members appointed by the Governor. A person who is directly and adversely affected by the Montana DEQ's approval or denial of a permit to construct an air pollution source may request a hearing before the BER and the BER may uphold, alter, or reverse decisions of the Montana DEQ. Similarly, a person who participated in the comment period on Montana DEQ's issuance, renewal, amendment, or modification of a title V operating permit may request a hearing before the BER and the BER may uphold, alter, or reverse decisions of the Montana DEQ. Finally, a person who receives an enforcement order from Montana DEQ under Chapter 2 of Title 75, Air Quality, may request a hearing before the BER and the BER may uphold, alter, or reverse decisions of the Montana DEQ.

    As EPA has explained in other rulemaking actions, e.g., 78 FR 32613 (May 31, 2013), we interpret section 128(a)(1) to mean that boards that are the potential final decisionmaker via permit and enforcement order appeals “approve” those permits and enforcement orders. For example, by being the final decisionmaker with respect to questions such as whether a source receives a permit and the specific contents of such a permit, the board is an entity that approves the permit within the meaning of 128(a)(1). Thus, the BER is subject to the requirements of 128(a)(1).

    Montana's New Rule II Board Action, provides that the BER must be composed in conformance with requirements of section 128 of the CAA for all permits and enforcement orders initiated under Montana's air pollution control authority. In essence, the rule prohibits the BER from taking action if the BER does not meet the requirements of section 128(a)(1). The State has submitted New Rule II (ARM 17.8.151) to EPA for adoption into their SIP, thus making a legally binding requirement that the BER be comprised of a majority of members that represent the public interest and do not derive a significant portion of their income from parties subject to permit requirements or enforcement orders under the CAA. The definitions of “regulated person,” “represent the public interest,” and “significant portion of income” are consistent with the recommendations in our 1978 guidance. We believe Montana's submission of New Rule II satisfies the requirements of subsection 128(a)(1).

    To meet the requirements of subsection 128(a)(2), the State's New Rule III (ARM 17.8.152) Reporting, includes disclosure requirements applying to members of the BER. At the first meeting each calendar year, members of the BER must file with the BER secretary a written certification that they “represent the public interest 15 ” and do not derive a “significant portion of income” from “regulated persons” as defined in New Rule I (ARM 17.8.150) Definitions (4)(a), (b) and (c). The board member must file with the BER a written withdrawal of certification if they no longer represent the public interest or has begun to derive a “significant portion of income 16 ” from “regulated persons,” as defined in New Rule I (5) and (3)(a) and (b). Furthermore, board members must file with the BER a written disclose of any “potential conflicts of interest” as defined in New Rule I (2)(a) and (b). New Rule I defines “potential conflict of interest” as “(a) any income from a regulated person; or (b) any interest or relationship that would preclude the individual having the interest or relationship from being considered one who represents the public interest.” This definition is consistent with the suggested definition in the 1978 guidance. We believe Montana's submission of New Rule I and III satisfies the requirements of subsection 128(a)(2).

    15 New Rule I defines “represent the public interest” as a person who “(4) does not: (a) Own a controlling interest in or have five percent or more of his or her capital invested in a regulated person; (b) serve as attorney for, act as consultant for, or serve as an officer or director of a regulated person; or (c) hold any other official or contractual relationship with a regulated person.”

    16 New Rule I defines “significant portion of income” as “(5) ten percent or more of gross personal income for a calendar year, including retirement benefits, consulting fees, and stock dividends, except that it shall mean 50 percent or more of gross personal income for a calendar year if the recipient is over 60 years of age and is receiving such portion pursuant to retirement, pension, or similar arrangement. For purposes of this section, income derived from mutual-fund payments, or from other diversified investments as to which the recipient does not know the identity of the primary sources of income, shall be considered part of the recipient's gross personal income but shall not be treated as income derived from persons subject to permits or enforcement orders under the Clean Air Act.”

    For the foregoing reasons, the EPA believes that the New Rules I (ARM 17.8.150), II (ARM 17.8.151), and III (ARM 17.8.152) adopted by the BER on October 16, 2015 and submitted to EPA for inclusion in the SIP on December 17, 2015 contains provisions that meet the requirements of section 128(a)(1) and section 128(a). Accordingly, we are proposing approval of that submission and also proposing approval of the infrastructure SIP submission as meeting the requirements of section 128 for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS.

    7. Stationary source monitoring system: Section 110(a)(2)(F) requires: (i) The installation, maintenance, and replacement of equipment, and the implementation of other necessary steps, by owners or operators of stationary sources to monitor emissions from such sources; (ii) Periodic reports on the nature and amounts of emissions and emissions-related data from such sources; and (iii) Correlation of such reports by the state agency with any emission limitations or standards established pursuant to the Act, which reports shall be available at reasonable times for public inspection.

    The provisions cited by Montana (ARM 17.8.105 and 17.8.106) pertain to testing requirements and protocols. Montana also incorporates by reference 40 CFR part 51, appendix P, regarding minimum monitoring requirements. (See ARM 17.8.103(1)(D)). In addition, Montana provides for monitoring, recordkeeping, and reporting requirements for sources subject to minor and major source permitting

    Furthermore, Montana is required to submit emissions data to the EPA for purposes of the National Emissions Inventory (NEI). The NEI is the EPA's central repository for air emissions data. The EPA published the Air Emissions Reporting Rule (AERR) on December 5, 2008, which modified the requirements for collecting and reporting air emissions data (73 FR 76539). The AERR shortened the time states had to report emissions data from 17 to 12 months, giving states one calendar-year to submit emissions data. All states are required to submit a comprehensive emissions inventory every three years and report emissions for certain larger sources annually through the EPA's online Emissions Inventory System. States report emissions data for the six criteria pollutants and their associated precursors—nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide, ammonia, lead, carbon monoxide, particulate matter and volatile organic compounds. Many states also voluntarily report emissions of hazardous air pollutants. Montana made its latest update to the NEI in April 2013. EPA compiles the emissions data, supplementing it where necessary, and releases it to the general public through the Web site http://www.epa.gov/ttn/chief/eiinformation.html.

    Based on the analysis above, we propose to approve the Montana SIP as meeting the requirements of CAA section 110(a)(2)(F) for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS.

    8. Emergency powers: Section 110(a)(2)(G) of the CAA requires infrastructure SIPs to “provide for authority comparable to that in [CAA section 303] and adequate contingency plans to implement such authority.”

    Under CAA section 303, the EPA Administrator has authority to bring suit to immediately restrain an air pollution source that presents an imminent and substantial endangerment to public health or welfare, or the environment.17 If such action may not practicably assure prompt protection, then the Administrator has authority to issue temporary administrative orders to protect the public health or welfare, or the environment, and such orders can be extended if EPA subsequently files a civil suit. We propose to find that Montana's infrastructure SIP submittals and certain State statutes provide for authority for the State comparable to that granted to the EPA Administrator to act in the face of an imminent and substantial endangerment to the public's health or welfare, or the environment.

    17 A discussion of the requirements for meeting CAA section 303 is provided in our notice of proposed rulemaking: Promulgation of State Implementation Plan Revisions; Infrastructure Requirements for the 1997 and 2006 PM2.5, 2008 Lead, 2008 Ozone, and 2010 NO2 National Ambient Air Quality Standards; South Dakota (79 FR 71040, Dec. 1, 2014) under “VI. Analysis of State Submittals, 8. Emergency powers.”

    Montana's SIP submittals with regard to the section 110(a)(2)(G) emergency order requirements explain that Montana has an EPA approved Emergency Episode Avoidance Plan (EEAP) (71 FR 19, Jan. 3, 2006). According to the EEAP, “the Department shall take the necessary precautions to protect public health as set forth in 75-2-402 ,18 MCA, “Emergency Powers.” These precautions include, but are not limited to, ordering a halt or curtailment of any operations, activities, processes, or conditions the Department believes are contributing to the air pollutant emergency episode.” Additionally, under 75-2-111(3) MCA ,19 Montana's environmental review board has broad authority to “issue orders necessary to effectuate the purposes” of Chapter 2. Also, under 75-2-112(2)(a) 20 MCA, the DEQ has the authority to use “appropriate administrative and judicial proceedings” to enforce orders issued by the board. Any air pollution discharge that created an emergency situation would constitute a violation of the chapter and its purposes, therefore providing the BER and the DEQ authority to issue administrative orders to stop discharges that cause emergencies effecting welfare and the environment .21

    18 75-2-402 MCA, Emergency Procedure:

    “(1) Any other law to the contrary notwithstanding, if the department finds that a generalized condition of air pollution exists and that it creates an emergency requiring immediate action to protect human health or safety, the department shall order persons causing or contributing to the air pollution to immediately reduce or discontinue the emission of air contaminants. Upon issuance of this order, the department shall fix a place and time within 24 hours for a hearing to be held before the board. Within 24 hours after the start of the hearing and without adjournment, the board shall confirm, modify, or set aside the order of the department.

    (2) Except as provided in subsection (1), if the department finds that emissions from the operation of one or more air contaminant sources are causing imminent danger to human health or safety, it may order the person responsible for the operation in question to reduce or discontinue emissions immediately, without regard for 75-2-401. In this event, the requirements for hearing and confirmation, modification, or setting aside of orders as provided in subsection (1) apply.

    (3) This section does not limit any power that the governor or any other officer may have to declare an emergency and act on the basis of this declaration, whether the power is conferred by statute or the constitution or is inherent to the office.”

    19 75-2-111, MCA. Powers of board:

    “The board shall, subject to the provisions of 75-2-207:

    (1) Adopt, amend, and repeal rules for the administration, implementation, and enforcement of this chapter, for issuing orders under and in accordance with 42 U.S.C. 7419, and for fulfilling the requirements of 42 U.S.C. 7420 and regulations adopted pursuant to that section, except that, for purposes other than agricultural open burning, the board may not adopt permitting requirements or any other rule relating to:

    (a) any agricultural activity or equipment that is associated with the use of agricultural land or the planting, production, processing, harvesting, or storage of agricultural crops by an agricultural producer and that is not subject to the requirements of 42 U.S.C. 7475, 7503, or 7661a;

    (b) a commercial operation relating to the activities or equipment referred to in subsection (1)(a) that remains in a single location for less than 12 months and is not subject to the requirements of 42 U.S.C. 7475, 7503, or 7661a; or

    (c) forestry equipment and its associated engine used for forestry practices that remain in a single location for less than 12 months and are not subject to the requirements of 42 U.S.C. 7475, 7503, or 7661a;

    (2) hold hearings relating to any aspect of or matter in the administration of this chapter at a place designated by the board. The board may compel the attendance of witnesses and the production of evidence at hearings. The board shall designate an attorney to assist in conducting hearings and shall appoint a reporter who must be present at all hearings and take full stenographic notes of all proceedings, transcripts of which will be available to the public at cost.

    (3) issue orders necessary to effectuate the purposes of this chapter;

    (4) by rule require access to records relating to emissions;

    (5) by rule adopt a schedule of fees required for permits, permit applications, and registrations consistent with this chapter;

    (6) have the power to issue orders under and in accordance with 42 U.S.C. 7419.”

    20 75-2-112, MAC, Powers and responsibilities of department.

    “(1) The department is responsible for the administration of this chapter.

    (2) The department shall:

    (a) by appropriate administrative and judicial proceedings, enforce orders issued by the board;”

    21See email from David Klemp, Montana State Air Director to EPA, Dec. 12, 2015, contained within this docket.

    While no single Montana statute mirrors the authorities of CAA section 303, we propose to find that the combination of MCA provisions discussed above provide for authority comparable to section 303 to immediately bring suit to restrain and issue emergency orders for applicable emergencies to take prompt administrative action against any person causing or contributing to air pollution that presents an imminent and substantial endangerment to public health or welfare, or the environment. Consistent with EPA's 2013 Infrastructure SIP Guidance, the narratives provided in Montana's SIP submittals about the State's authorities applying to emergency episodes (as discussed above), plus additional Montana statutes that we have considered, we propose that they are sufficient to meet the authority requirement of CAA section 110(a)(2)(G).

    States must also have adequate contingency plans adopted into their SIP to implement the air agency's emergency episode authority (as discussed above). This can be done by submitting a plan that meets the applicable requirements of 40 CFR part 51, subpart H for the relevant NAAQS if the NAAQS is covered by those regulations. EPA approved Montana's EEAP in 71 FR 19 (Jan. 3, 2006). We find that Montana's air pollution emergency rules include PM10, ozone, NO2, and SO2; establish stages of episode criteria; provide for public announcement whenever any episode stage has been determined to exist; and specify emission control actions to be taken at each episode stage, consistent with the EPA emergency episode SIP requirements set forth at 40 CFR part 51 subpart H (prevention of air pollution emergency episode) for particulate matter, ozone, NO2, and SO2.

    As noted in the October 14, 2011 guidance,22 based on EPA's experience to date with the Pb NAAQS and designating Pb nonattainment areas, EPA expects that an emergency episode associated with Pb emissions would be unlikely and, if it were to occur, would be the result of a malfunction or other emergency situation at a relatively large source of Pb. Accordingly, EPA believes the central components of a contingency plan would be to reduce emissions from the source at issue and communicate with the public as needed. We note that 40 CFR part 51, subpart H (51.150-51.152) and 40 CFR part 51, Appendix L do not apply to Pb.

    22 “Guidance on Infrastructure State Implementation Plan (SIP) Elements Required Under Sections 110(a)(1) and 110(a)(2) for the 2008 Lead (Pb) National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS).” Steve Page, OAQPS Director, October 14, 2011, at p 13.

    Based on the above analysis, we propose approval of Montana's SIP as meeting the requirements of CAA section 110(a)(2)(G) for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, and 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS.

    9. Future SIP revisions: Section 110(a)(2)(H) requires that SIPs provide for revision of such plan: (i) From time to time as may be necessary to take account of revisions of such national primary or secondary ambient air quality standard or the availability of improved or more expeditious methods of attaining such standard; and (ii), except as provided in paragraph (3)(C), whenever the Administrator finds on the basis of information available to the Administrator that the SIP is substantially inadequate to attain the NAAQS which it implements or to otherwise comply with any additional requirements under this [Act].

    Montana's statutory provisions in the Montana CAA at 75-2-101 et seq., give the BER sufficient authority to meet the requirements of 110(a)(2)(H). Therefore, we propose to approve Montana's SIP as meeting the requirements of CAA section 110(a)(2)(H).

    10. Consultation with government officials, public notification, PSD and visibility protection: Section 110(a)(2)(J) requires that each SIP “meet the applicable requirements of section 121 of this title (relating to consultation), section 127 of this title (relating to public notification), and part C of this subchapter (relating to PSD of air quality and visibility protection).”

    The State has demonstrated that it has the authority and rules in place to provide a process of consultation with general purpose local governments, designated organizations of elected officials of local governments and any Federal Land Manager having authority over federal land to which the SIP applies, consistent with the requirements of CAA section 121 (see 59 FR 2988, Jan. 20, 1994). Furthermore, Montana's Emergency Episode Avoidance Plan, approved into the SIP (71 FR 19, Jan. 3, 2006), meets the general requirements of CAA section 127.

    Turning to the requirement in section 110(a)(2)(J) that the SIP meet the applicable requirements of part C of title I of the Act, EPA has evaluated this requirement in the context of infrastructure element (C) in section VI.3 above. As discussed there, EPA proposes to conditionally approve Montana's infrastructure SIP for the requirement in 110(a)(2)(C) that the SIP include a permit program as required in part C, on the condition that the State adopts and submits specific revisions within one year of EPA's final action on these infrastructure submittals; specifically to remove the phrase “24-hour average” in ARM 17.8.818(7)(a)(iii). For the same reason, EPA proposes to conditionally approve Montana's infrastructure SIP with regard to the requirement in section 110(a)(2)(J) that the SIP meet the applicable requirements of part C of title I the Act.

    Finally, with regard to the applicable requirements for visibility protection, EPA recognizes states are subject to visibility and regional haze program requirements under part C of the Act. In the event of the establishment of a new NAAQS, however, the visibility and regional haze program requirements under part C do not change. Thus, we find that there are no applicable visibility requirements under section 110(a)(2)(J) when a new NAAQS becomes effective.

    Based on the above analysis, we propose to approve the Montana SIP as meeting the requirements of CAA section 110(a)(2)(J) for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS with regard to sections 121 and 127 of the CAA, and conditional approval of section 110(a)(2)(J) with regard to meeting the applicable requirements of part C relating to PSD.

    11. Air quality and modeling/data: Section 110(a)(2)(K) requires each SIP provide for: (i) The performance of such air quality modeling as the Administrator may prescribe for the purpose of predicting the effect on ambient air quality of any emissions of any air pollutant for which the Administrator has established a NAAQS; and (ii) the submission, upon request, of data related to such air quality modeling to the Administrator.

    Montana's PSD program (see ARM 17.8.821(1)) requires estimates of ambient air concentrations be based on applicable air quality models specified in Appendix W of 40 CFR part 51, pertaining to the Guidelines on Air Quality Models. Additionally, MCA 75-2-211. Powers of board and MCA 75-2-112. Powers and responsibilities of department, provide Montana with the broad authority to develop and implement an air quality control program that includes conducting air quality modeling to predict the effect on ambient air quality of any emissions of any air pollutant for which a NAAQS has been promulgated.23 As a result, the SIP provides for such air quality modeling as the Administrator has prescribed with respect to the SIP outside of the nonattainment areas.

    23See email from David Klemp, Montana State Air Director, to EPA on Dec. 12, 2015, contained within this docket.

    Therefore, we propose to approve the Montana SIP as meeting the CAA section 110(a)(2)(K) for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS.

    12. Permitting fees: Section 110(a)(2)(L) requires the owner or operator of each major stationary source to pay to the permitting authority, as a condition of any permit required under this act, a fee sufficient to cover: (i) The reasonable costs of reviewing and acting upon any application for such a permit; and (ii) if the owner or operator receives a permit for such source, the reasonable costs of implementing and enforcing the terms and conditions of any such permit (not including any court costs or other costs associated with any enforcement action), until such fee requirement is superseded with respect to such sources by the Administrator's approval of a fee program under title V.

    Montana requires an applicant proposing to construct or modify an air pollution source to pay an application fee, ARM 17.8.504 (State rule only). Sources must also pay an annual operation fee, ARM 17.8.505 (State rule only). Under ARM 17.8.823(1), Source Information for PSD of air quality, “(1) The owner or operator of a proposed source or modification shall submit the permit application fee required pursuant to ARM 17.8.504 and all information necessary to perform any analysis or make any determination required under procedures established in accordance with this subchapter.” ARM 17.8.823 was adopted into Montana's SIP on August 13, 2001 (66 FR 42427). Additionally, ARM 17.8.1704, Registration Fees, for oil and gas facilities states that “(1) The registration fee required by ARM 17.8.504 must be submitted to the department with each registration submitted under this subchapter. No fee is required for notifying the department, pursuant to ARM 17.8.1703(4), of changes to registration information. (2) The registration fee must be paid in its entirety at the time the registration form is submitted to the department.” ARM 17.8.1703 was adopted into the Montana SIP on November 19, 2013 (78 FR 69296).

    We also note that all the State SIPs we are proposing to approve in this action cite the regulation that provides for collection of permitting fees under Montana's approved title V permit program (65 FR 37049, June 13, 2000). As discussed in that approval, the State demonstrated that the fees collected were sufficient to administer the program.

    Therefore, based on the State's experience in relying on the funds collected through application and processing fees at ARM 17.8.504 and ARM 17.8.505, and the use of title V fees to implement and enforce PSD permits once they are incorporated into title V permits, we propose to approve the submissions as supplemented by the State for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS.

    13. Consultation/participation by affected local entities: Section 110(a)(2)(M) requires states to provide for consultation and participation in SIP development by local political subdivisions affected by the SIP.

    The statutory and other provisions cited in Montana's SIP submittals (Section 75-2-112(2)(j) of the MT CAA, ARM 17.8.140, 17.8.141 and 17.8.142, contained within this docket) meet the requirements of CAA section 110(a)(2)(M), so we propose to approve Montana's SIP as meeting these requirements for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS.

    VII. What action is EPA taking?

    In this action, EPA is proposing to approve infrastructure elements for the 2008 Pb, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2 and 1997, 2006 and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS from the State's certifications as shown in Table 2. EPA is proposing conditional approval of elements (C), D(i)(II) element 3 and (J) with respect to the requirement to have a PSD program that meets the requirements of part C of Title 1 of the Act as shown in Table 3. Elements we propose no action on are reflected in Table 5. EPA is proposing to disapprove (D)(i)(II) element 4 for the 2006 PM2.5, 2008 ozone, 2010 NO2, 2010 SO2, and 2012 PM2.5 NAAQS (Table 4). As noted, finalization of this disapproval would not require further action from the State, and does not create a new FIP obligation for EPA. We also propose to approve revisions to the ARM from the August 21, 2012 submittal (Table 2) and conditionally approve a revision from the March 24, 2015 submittal (Table 3) to bring Montana's PSD program up to date with respect to current requirements for PM2.5. If Montana does not submit a SIP revision to correct the language in ARM 17.8.818(7)(a)(iii) within one year of EPA's final action on these infrastructure submittals, conditional approvals will automatically revert to disapprovals for ARM 17.8.818(7)(a)(iii), and elements (C), D(i)(II) element 3 and (J) with respect to PSD requirements. Finally, EPA is proposing to approve new ARM submitted on December 17, 2015 to satisfy requirements of element (E)(ii), state boards.

    A comprehensive summary of infrastructure elements, and revisions and additions to the ARM organized by EPA's proposed rule action are provided in Table 2, Table 3, Table 4 and Table 5.

    Table 2—List of Montana Infrastructure Elements and Revisions That EPA Is Proposing To Approve Proposed for approval February 10, 2010 submittal—1997 and 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS: (D)(ii) for both the 1997 and 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS. December 19, 2011 submittal—2008 Pb NAAQS: (A), (B), (C) with respect to minor NSR requirements, (D)(i)(I) elements 1 and 2, (D)(i)(II) element 4, (D)(ii), (E), (F), (G), (H), (J) with respect to requirements of sections 121 and 127, (K), (L) and (M). January 3, 2013 submittal—2008 Ozone NAAQS: (A), (B), (C) with respect to minor NSR requirements, (D)(ii), (E), (F), (G), (H), (J) with respect to requirements of sections 121 and 127, (K), (L) and (M). June 4, 2013 submittal—2010 NO2 NAAQS: (A), (B), (C) with respect to minor NSR requirements, (D)(i)(I) elements 1 and 2, (D)(ii), (F), (G), (H), (J) with respect to requirements of sections 121 and 127, (K), (L) and (M). July 15, 2013 submittal—2010 SO2 NAAQS: (A), (B), (C) with respect to minor NSR requirements, (D)(ii), (F), (G), (H), (J) with respect to requirements of sections 121 and 127, (K), (L) and (M). December 17, 2015 submittal—2012 PM2.5 NAAQS: (A), (B), (C) with respect to minor NSR requirements, (D)(ii), (F), (G), (H), (J) with respect to requirements of sections 121 and 127, (K), (L) and (M). August 21, 2012 submittal—Revisions to ARM, Prevention of Significant Deterioration: ARM 17.8.801(3), 17.8.801(21), 17.8.801(27), 17.8.804(1), 17.8.818(7)(a)(iv)-(xi), 17.8.822(9), 17.8.822(10), 17.8.822(11), 17.8.822(12) and 17.8.825(4). December 17, 2015 submittal—New Rules to ARM, CAA Section 128 New Rule I (ARM 17.8.150), II (ARM 17.8.151) and III (ARM 17.8.152). Table 3—List of Montana Infrastructure Elements and Revisions That EPA Is Proposing To Conditionally Approve Proposed for conditional approval February 10, 2010 submittal—1997 and 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS: (D)(i)(II) element 3 for the 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS. December 19, 2011 submittal—2008 Pb NAAQS: (C) and (J) with respect to PSD, and (D)(i)(II) element 3. January 3, 2013 submittal—2008 Ozone NAAQS: (C) and (J) with respect to PSD, and (D)(i)(II) element 3. June 4, 2013 submittal—2010 NO2 NAAQS: (C) and (J) with respect to PSD, and (D)(i)(II) element 3. July 15, 2013 submittal—2010 SO2 NAAQS: (C) and (J) with respect to PSD, and (D)(i)(II) element 3. December 17, 2015 submittal—2012 PM2.5 NAAQS: (C) and (J) with respect to PSD, and (D)(i)(II) element 3. March 24, 2015 submittal—Revisions to ARM, Prevention of Significant Deterioration: ARM 17.8.818(7)(a)(iii). Table 4—List of Montana Infrastructure Elements That EPA Is Proposing To Disapprove Proposed for disapproval February 10, 2010 submittal—1997 and 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS: (D)(i)(II) element 4 for the 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS. January 3, 2013 submittal—2008 Ozone NAAQS: (D)(i)(II) element 4. June 4, 2013 submittal—2010 NO2 NAAQS: (D)(i)(II) element 4. July 15, 2013 submittal—2010 SO2 NAAQS: (D)(i)(II) element 4. December 17, 2015 submittal—2012 PM2.5 NAAQS: (D)(i)(II) element 4. Table 5—List of Montana Infrastructure Elements and Revisions That EPA Is Proposing To Take No Action on [Proposed for no action] Revised section Reason for proposed “No Action” Revision to be made in future rulemaking
  • action
  • Revision made in a separate rulemaking
  • action
  • (80 FR 72937)
  • Revision
  • deletes
  • section of the
  • ARM never
  • approved into
  • State's SIP
  • Revision
  • superseded by revision in March 24, 2015 State submittal
  • January 3, 2013 submittal—2008 Ozone NAAQS: (D)(i)(I) elements 1 and 2 x July 15, 2013 submittal—2010 SO2 NAAQS: (D)(i)(I) elements 1 and 2 x December 17, 2015 submittal—2012 PM2.5 NAAQS: (D)(i)(I) elements 1 and 2 x August 21, 2012 submittal—Revisions to ARM, Prevention of Significant Deterioration: ARM 17.8.818(7)(a)(iii) x ARM 17.8.820(2) x March 24, 2015 submittal—Revisions to ARM, Prevention of Significant Deterioration: ARM 17.8.820(2) x
    VIII. Incorporation by Reference

    In this rule, the EPA is proposing to include in a final EPA rule regulatory text that includes incorporation by reference. In accordance with requirements of 1 CFR 51.5, the EPA is proposing to incorporate by reference the Administrative Rules of Montana pertaining to major source permitting and PM2.5 emission limits discussed in section VI. 3. Program for enforcement of control measures and section VI. b. Sub-element (ii): State boards, of this preamble. 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).

    IX. Statutory and Executive Orders Review

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

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

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

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

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

    • Does not have federalism implications as specified in Executive Order 13132 (64 FR 43255, Aug. 10, 1999);

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

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

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

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

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

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Carbon monoxide, Incorporation by reference, Intergovernmental relations, Greenhouse gases, Lead, Nitrogen dioxide, Ozone, Particulate matter, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Sulfur oxides, Volatile organic compounds.

    Authority:

    42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

    Dated: January 12, 2016. Shaun L. McGrath, Regional Administrator, Region 8.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01403 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 63 [EPA-HQ-OAR-2015-0747; FRL-9941-59-OAR] RIN 2060-AS13 Oil and Natural Gas Sector: National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants; Extension of Comment Period AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Request for information; extension of comment period.

    SUMMARY:

    On November 27, 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requested information related to hazardous air pollutant emissions from sources in the oil and natural gas production and natural gas transmission and storage segments of the oil and natural gas sector. The deadline to respond to our request was January 26, 2016. In response to requests from several stakeholders, the EPA is extending the period to respond to our request for information to March 11, 2016.

    DATES:

    The public comment period for the request for information published in the Federal Register on November 27, 2015 (80 CFR 74068), is being extended. Written comments must be received on or before March 11, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments. Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2015-0747, to the Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or withdrawn. The EPA may publish any comment received to its public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and should include discussion of all points you wish to make. The EPA will generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of the primary submission (i.e., on the web, cloud, or other file sharing system). For additional submission methods, the full EPA public comment policy, information about CBI or multimedia submissions, and general guidance on making effective comments, please visit http://www2.epa.gov/dockets/commenting-epa-dockets.

    Docket. Publicly available documents relevant to this action are available for public inspection either electronically at http://www.regulations.gov or in hard copy at the EPA Docket Center, 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. A reasonable fee may be charged for copying. The official public docket for this rulemaking is Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2015-0747.

    World Wide Web. The EPA Web site for this rulemaking is at http://www3.epa.gov/airquality/oilandgas/actions.html.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For further information about this action, contact Mr. Matthew Witosky, Sector Policies and Programs Division (E143-05), Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27711, telephone number: (919) 541-2865; facsimile number: (919) 541-3740; email address: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Comment Period

    After considering the requests to extend the public comment period, the EPA has decided to extend the public comment period until March 11, 2016. This extension will provide the additional time requested by the public to review the request and gather data to respond.

    Dated: January 14, 2016. Stephen D. Page, Director, Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01508 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Indian Health Service 42 CFR Part 136 RIN 0905AC97 Catastrophic Health Emergency Fund AGENCY:

    Indian Health Service, HHS.

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Indian Health Service (IHS) administers the Catastrophic Health Emergency Fund, The purpose of CHEF is to meet the extraordinary medical costs associated with the treatment of victims of disasters or catastrophic illnesses who are within the responsibility of the Service. This proposed rule: Proposes definitions governing the CHEF; establishes that a Service Unit shall not be eligible for reimbursement for the cost of treatment until the episode of care's cost has reached a certain threshold; establishes a procedure for reimbursement for certain services exceeding a threshold cost; establishes a procedure for payment for certain cases; and, establishes a procedure to ensure payment will not be made from CHEF if other sources of payment (Federal, state, local, private) are available.

    DATES:

    To be assured consideration, written comments must be received at the address below, no later than 5 p.m. on March 11, 2016. The IHS Area and program offices will send copies of this notice to each Tribe within their jurisdiction.

    ADDRESSES:

    In commenting, please refer to file code 0905AC97. Because of staff and resource limitations, we cannot accept comments by facsimile (FAX) transmission. You may submit comments in one of four ways (please choose only one of the ways listed):

    1. Electronically. You may submit electronic comments on this regulation to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the “Submit a Comment” instructions.

    2. By regular mail. You may mail written comments to the following address only: Betty Gould, Regulations Officer, Indian Health Service, Office of Management Services, Division of Regulatory Affairs, 5600 Fishers Lane, Mailstop: 09E70, Rockville, Maryland 20857.

    Please allow sufficient time for mailed comments to be received before the close of the comment period.

    3. By express or overnight mail. You may send written comments to the above address.

    4. By hand or courier. If you prefer, you may deliver (by hand or courier) your written comments before the close of the comment period to the address above.

    If you intend to deliver your comments to the Rockville address, please call telephone number (301) 443-1116 in advance to schedule your arrival with one of our staff members.

    Comments will be made available for public inspection at the Rockville address from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday-Friday, two weeks after publication of this notice.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Carl Harper, Director, Office of Resource Access and Partnerships, Indian Health Service, 5600 Fishers Lane, Mailstop: 10E85C, Rockville, Maryland 20857, Telephone (301) 443-1553.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Inspection of Public Comments: All comments received before the close of the comment period are available for viewing by the public, including any personally identifiable or confidential business information that is included in a comment. We post all comments as soon as possible after they have been received to the following Web site: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the search instructions on the Web site to view public comments.

    I. Background

    The purpose of CHEF is to meet the extraordinary medical costs associated with the treatment of victims of disasters or catastrophic illnesses who are within the responsibility of the Service. IHS administers CHEF to reimburse certain IHS and Tribal purchased/referred care (PRC) costs that exceed the cost threshold. Although CHEF was first established in 1988, a similar fund was authorized by Public Law 99-591, a Joint Resolution continuing appropriations for fiscal year (FY) 1987. IHS developed operating guidelines in August of 1987, which were approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for the management of CHEF. Those guidelines were developed with input from Tribal organizations and IHS personnel who work with the daily processing and management of Contract Health Services (CHS), now known as the Purchased/Referred Care (PRC) Program. Congress passed the Indian Health Care Improvement Reauthorization and Extension Act of 2009, S. 1790, 111th Cong. (2010) (IHCIREA), as section 10221(a) of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Public Law 111-148. Through IHCIREA, Congress permanently reauthorized and amended the Indian Health Care Improvement Act (IHCIA), Public Law 94-437. Section 202 of IHCIA [25 U.S.C. 1621a] establishes CHEF and directs the IHS to promulgate regulations for its administration. The operating guidelines and twenty-eight (28) years of experience (FYs 1987-2015) contributed to the design of this regulation.

    II. Provisions of This Proposed Regulation

    This regulation proposes to (1) establish definitions governing CHEF, including definitions of disasters and catastrophic illnesses; (2) establish that a Service Unit shall not be eligible for reimbursement for the cost of treatment from CHEF until its cost of treating any victim of such catastrophic illness or disaster has reached a certain threshold cost; (3) establish a procedure for reimbursement of the portion of the costs for authorized services that exceed such threshold costs; (4) establish a procedure for payment from CHEF for cases in which the exigencies of the medical circumstances warrant treatment prior to the authorization of such treatment; and, (5) establish a procedure that will ensure no payment will be made from CHEF to a Service Unit to the extent the provider of services is eligible to receive payment for the treatment from any other Federal, State, local, or private source of reimbursement for which the patient is eligible.

    No part of CHEF, or its administration, shall be subject to contract or grant under any law, including the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act (ISDEAA), Public Law 93-638 [25 U.S.C. 450 et seq.] and may not be allocated, apportioned, or delegated to a Service Unit, Area Office, or any other organizational unit. Accordingly, the IHS Division of Contract Care within the Office of Resource Access and Partnerships at Headquarters shall remain responsible for administration of CHEF.

    A. Definitions

    IHS proposes establishing the following definitions for governing CHEF, including definitions of disasters and catastrophic illnesses:

    1. Alternate Resources—any Federal, State, Tribal, local, or private source of coverage for which the patient is eligible. Such resources include health care providers and institutions and health care programs for the payment of health services including but not limited to programs under titles XVIII or XIX of the Social Security Act (i.e., Medicare and Medicaid), other Federal health care programs, State, Tribal or local health care programs, Veterans Health Administration, and private insurance, including Tribal self-insurance.

    2. Catastrophic Health Emergency Fund (CHEF)—the fund established by Congress to reimburse extraordinary medical expenses incurred for catastrophic illnesses and disasters covered by a PRC program of the IHS, whether such program is carried out by IHS or an Indian Tribe or Tribal organization under the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act.

    3. Catastrophic Illness—a medical condition that is costly by virtue of the intensity and/or duration of its treatment. Examples of conditions that frequently require multiple hospital stays and extensive treatment are cancer, burns, premature births, cardiac disease, end-stage renal disease, strokes, trauma-related cases such as automobile accidents and gunshot wounds, and some mental disorders. CHEF is intended to shield IHS and Tribal PRC operations from financial disruption caused by the intensity of high cost illnesses and/or events.

    4. Disasters—situations that pose a significant level of threat to life or health or cause loss of life or health stemming from events such as tornadoes, earthquakes, floods, catastrophic accidents, epidemics, fires, and explosions.

    5. Episode of Care—the period of consecutive days for a discrete health condition during which reasonable and necessary medical services related to the condition occur.

    6. Purchased/Referred Care (PRC)—any health service that is—

    (a) delivered based on a referral by, or at the expense of, an Indian health program; and

    (b) provided by a public or private medical provider or hospital which is not a provider or hospital of the IHS health program.

    7. Service Unit—an administrative entity of the Service or a Tribal health program through which services are provided, directly or by contract, to eligible Indians within a defined geographic area.

    8. Threshold Cost—the designated amount above which incurred medical costs will be considered for CHEF reimbursement after a review of the authorized expenses and diagnosis.

    B. Threshold Cost

    IHCIA section 202 provides that a Service Unit shall not be eligible for reimbursement from CHEF until its cost of treating any victim of a catastrophic illness or event has reached a certain threshold cost. The Secretary is directed to establish the initial CHEF threshold at—

    (1) the FY 2000 level of $19,000; and

    (2) for any subsequent year, the threshold will not be less than the threshold cost of the previous year increased by the percentage increase in the medical care expenditure category of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for all urban consumers (United States city average) for the 12-month period ending with December of the previous year.

    IHS intends to set the initial threshold governed by this rule at $19,000 for FY 2016. In reaching this determination, IHS adopted the recommendation of the IHS Director's Workgroup on Improving PRC. The Workgroup, composed of Tribal leaders and Tribal and Federal representatives, voted 18-2 to recommend $19,000 as the initial threshold. For this recommendation, the Workgroup considered several factors, including (1) Tribal concerns regarding the lower threshold and the potential to exhaust CHEF earlier in the FY leaving PRC programs without the ability to recover costs for treating victims of catastrophic illnesses or disasters; and, (2) Tribal concerns about setting the threshold at the FY 2000 level and then applying the CPI for each year since FY 2000, which would have resulted in a $30,000 plus threshold requirement by FY 2013. At this higher level, PRC programs with limited budgets would be unable to access the CHEF to seek recovery for extraordinary medical costs. Accordingly, IHS intends to set the initial threshold at $19,000 for FY 2016, with increases in subsequent years based on the annual Consumer Price Index.

    C. Compliance With PRC Regulations

    IHS proposes to follow PRC regulations 42 CFR part 136 for payment from CHEF. For example, payment or reimbursement from CHEF may be made for the costs of treating persons eligible for PRC in accordance with 42 CFR 136.23 and authorized for PRC in accordance with 42 CFR 136.24. In cases where the exigencies of the medical circumstances warrant treatment prior to the authorization of such treatment by the Service Unit, authorization must be obtained in accordance with 42 CFR 136.24(c). For example, claims for reimbursement of services provided that do not meet the 72 hour emergency notification requirements found at 42 CFR 136.24(c) will be denied. The applicable Area PRC program shall review CHEF requests for CHEF reimbursement to ensure consistency with PRC regulations.

    D. Alternate Resources

    In accordance with section 202(d)(5) of IHCIA [25 U.S.C. 1621a (d)(5)], alternate resources must be exhausted before reimbursement is made from CHEF. No reimbursement shall be made from CHEF to any Service Unit to the extent the patient is eligible to receive payment for treatment from any other Federal, State, Tribal, local, or private source of reimbursement. Medical expenses incurred for catastrophic illnesses and events will not be considered eligible for reimbursement if they are payable by alternate resources, as determined by IHS, whether or not such resources actually make payment. IHS is the payor of last resort and, if the provider of services is eligible to receive payment from other resources, the medical expenses are only payable by PRC and reimbursable by CHEF to the extent IHS would not consider the other resources to be “alternate resources” under the applicable regulations and IHS policy. Expenses paid by alternate resources are not eligible for payment by PRC or reimbursement by CHEF. However, if the patient becomes eligible for alternate resources, the Service Unit shall return all funds reimbursed from CHEF to the Headquarters CHEF account.

    E. Reimbursement Procedure

    A patient must be eligible for PRC services and the Service Unit must adhere to regulations (42 CFR 136.23(a) through (f)) governing the PRC program to be reimbursed for catastrophic cases from CHEF. Once the catastrophic case meets the threshold requirement and the Service Unit has authorized PRC resources exceeding the threshold requirement, the Service Unit may qualify for reimbursement from CHEF. Reimbursable costs are those costs that exceed the threshold requirement after payment has been made by all alternate resources such as Federal, State, Tribal, local, private insurance, and other resources. Reimbursement of PRC expenditures incurred by the Service Unit and approved by the PRC program at Headquarters will be processed through the respective IHS Area Office. Reimbursement from CHEF shall be subject to availability of funds.

    F. Recovery of CHEF Reimbursement Funds

    In the event a PRC program has been reimbursed from CHEF for an episode of care and that same episode of care becomes eligible for and is paid by any Federal, State, Tribal, local, or private source (including third party insurance), the PRC program shall return all CHEF funds received for that episode of care to the CHEF at IHS Headquarters. These recovered CHEF funds will be used to reimburse other valid CHEF requests.

    III. Collection of Information Requirements

    Prior to implementing the rule, IHS may be required to develop new information collection forms that would require approval from the Office of Management and Budget in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, 44 United States Code 3507(d).

    IV. Response to Comments

    Because of the large number of public comments we normally receive on Federal Register documents, we are not able to acknowledge or respond to them individually. We will consider all comments received by the date and time specified in the DATES section of this preamble, and, when we proceed with a final rule, we will respond to the comments in the preamble to that rule.

    V. Regulatory Impact Analysis

    We have examined the impacts of this rule as required by Executive Order (E.O.) 12866 on Regulatory Planning and Review (September 30, 1993); section 603 of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), Public Law 96-354 [5 U.S.C. 601-612], as amended by subtitle D of the Small Business Regulatory Fairness Act of 1996, Public Law 104-121; the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) of 1995, Public Law 104-4; E.O. 13132 on Federalism (August 4, 1999); the Congressional Review Act [5 U.S.C. 804(2)]; and E.O. 13175 Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments.

    A. E.O. 12866

    E.O. 12866 directs 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). In accordance with E.O. 12866, Agencies must submit a regulatory impact analysis for those regulatory actions that are “significant” within the meaning of “economically significant.” A regulatory action is economically significant if it is anticipated to “(1) have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more” or (2) to “adversely affect in a material way the economy, a sector of the economy, productivity, competition, jobs, the environment, public health or safety, or State, local, or Tribal governments or communities.” This rule is not being treated as a “significant regulatory action” under section 3(f) of E.O. 12866. Accordingly, the rule has not been reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget.

    B. Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA)

    RFA requires analysis of regulatory options that minimize any significant economic impact of a rule on small entities, unless it is certified that the proposed rule is not expected to have a significant economic impact on small entities. This rule is not expected to have a significant economic impact on small entities.

    C. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA)

    Section 202 of UMRA (Pub. L. 104-4) requires an assessment of anticipated costs and benefits before proposing any rule that may result in expenditure by State, local, and Tribal governments, in aggregate, or by the private sector of $100 million in any one year. We have determined that this rule is consistent with the principles set forth in the executive orders and in these statutes and find that this rule will not have an effect on the economy that exceeds $100 million in any one year. The IHS FY 2015 annual appropriation for CHEF was $51.5 million. This final rule is not anticipated to have an effect on State, local, or Tribal governments in the aggregate, or by the private sector of $100 million or more. This rule does not impose any new costs on small entities, and it will not result in a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. Thus, no further analysis is required.

    D. Federalism

    E.O. 13132 establishes certain requirements that an agency must meet when it promulgates a proposed rule (and subsequent final rule) that imposes substantial direct requirement costs on State and local governments, preempts State law, or otherwise has Federalism implications. We have reviewed this proposed rule under the threshold criteria of E.O. 13132 and have determined that this proposed rule would not have substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the Federal Government and the States, or on the distribution of power and governmental responsibilities among the various levels of the government(s). As this rule has no Federal implications, a Federalism summary impact statement is not required.

    E. Congressional Review Act

    This rule is not a “major rule” as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2)—it does not or is not likely to result in:

    (1) An annual effect on the economy of $100,000,000 or more;

    (2) a major increase in costs or prices for consumers, individual industries, Federal, State, or local government agencies, or geographic regions; or

    (3) significant adverse effects on competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or on the ability of United States-based enterprises to compete with foreign-based enterprises in domestic and export markets. The term does not include any rule promulgated under the Telecommunications Act of 1996 and the amendments made by that Act.

    F. E.O. 13175 Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal Governments

    This rule has Tribal implications under E.O. 13175, Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments, because it would have a substantial direct and positive effect on one or more Indian Tribes.

    These guidelines were developed with input from Tribes and IHS personnel who work with the daily processing and management of PRC resources. The IHS Director's Workgroup on Improving PRC met and discussed these guidelines on October 12-13, 2010, and June 1-2, 2011, in Denver, Colorado, and on January 11-12, 2012, in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Based on the recommendation of the Workgroup the threshold amount of $19,000 is proposed to be established for the current fiscal year. This proposed rule serves as Tribal consultation with affected Tribes by giving interested Tribes the opportunity to comment on the regulation before it is finalized. In addition, IHS issued “Dear Tribal Leader” letters related to the development of these regulations on February 9, 2011, and May 6, 2013. IHS intends to consult as fully as possible with Tribes prior to the publication of a final rule.

    List of Subjects in 42 CFR Part 136

    Alaska Natives, Contract Health Services, Health, Health facilities, Health service delivery areas, Indians.

    Dated: November 10, 2015. Robert G. McSwain, Principal Deputy Director, Indian Health Service. Dated: January 11, 2016. Sylvia M. Burwell, Secretary, Health and Human Services.

    For the reasons set out in the preamble, the Indian Health Service proposes to amend 42 CFR chapter I as set forth below:

    PART 136—INDIAN HEALTH 1. The authority citation for part 136 is revised to read as follows: Authority:

    42 U.S.C. 2001 and 2003; 25 U.S.C. 13; and 25 U.S.C 1621a.

    2. Add new subpart L consisting of §§ 136.501-136.509 to read as follows: Subpart L—Indian Catastrophic Health Emergency Fund Sec. 136.501 Definitions. 136.502 Purpose of the regulations. 136.503 Threshold cost. 136.504 Reimbursement procedure. 136.505 Reimbursable services. 136.506 Alternate resources. 136.507 Program integrity. 136.508 Recovery of reimbursement funds. 136.509 Reconsideration and appeals. Subpart L—Indian Catastrophic Health Emergency Fund
    § 136.501 Definitions.

    As used in this subpart:

    Alternate Resource means any Federal, State, Tribal, local, or private source of reimbursement for which the patient is eligible. Such resources include health care providers and institutions and health care programs for the payment of health services including but not limited to programs under titles XVIII or XIX of the Social Security Act (i.e., Medicare and Medicaid), other Federal health care programs, State, Tribal or local health care programs, Veterans Health Administration, and private insurance.

    Catastrophic Health Emergency Fund (CHEF) means the fund created by Congress to cover extraordinary medical expenses incurred for catastrophic illnesses and disasters covered by a purchased/referred care (PRC) program of the Indian Health Service (IHS), whether such program is carried out by IHS or an Indian Tribe or Tribal organization under the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act.

    Catastrophic Illness refers to a medical condition that is costly by virtue of the intensity and/or duration of its treatment. Examples of conditions that frequently require multiple hospital stays and extensive treatment are cancer, burns, premature births, cardiac disease, end-stage renal disease, strokes, trauma-related cases such as automobile accidents, and gunshot wounds, and some mental disorders. CHEF is intended to shield IHS and Tribal PRC operations from financial disruption caused by the intensity of high cost illnesses and/or events.

    Disaster means a situation which poses a significant level of threat to life or health or causes loss of life or health stemming from events such as tornadoes, earthquakes, floods, catastrophic accidents, epidemics, fires, and explosions.

    Episode of Care means the period of consecutive days for a discrete health condition during which reasonable and necessary medical services related to the condition occur.

    Purchased/Referred Care means any health service that is—

    (1) Delivered based on a referral by, or at the expense of, an Indian health program; and

    (2) Provided by a public or private medical provider or hospital which is not a provider or hospital of the Indian health program.

    Service Unit means an administrative entity of the Service or a Tribal health program through which services are provided, directly or by contract, to eligible Indians within a defined geographic area.

    Threshold Cost means the designated amount above which incurred medical costs will be considered for CHEF reimbursement after a review of the authorized expenses and diagnosis.

    § 136.502 Purpose of the regulations.

    (a) The Indian Catastrophic Health Emergency Fund (hereafter referred to as “CHEF”) is authorized by section 202 of the Indian Health Care Improvement Act (IHCIA) [25 U.S.C. 1621a]. CHEF is administered by the Secretary, Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) (“the Secretary”) acting through the Headquarters of the Indian Health Service (IHS) (“the Service”), solely for the purpose of meeting extraordinary medical costs associated with treatment of victims of disasters or catastrophic illnesses who are within the responsibility of the Service.

    (b) These regulations:

    (1) Establish definitions of terms governing CHEF, including definitions of disasters and catastrophic illnesses for which the cost of treatment provided under contract would qualify for payment from CHEF;

    (2) Establish a threshold level for reimbursement for the cost of treatment;

    (3) Establish procedures for reimbursement of the portion of the costs incurred by Service Units that exceeds such threshold costs, including procedures for when the exigencies of the medical circumstances warrant treatment prior to the authorization of such treatment by the Service; and

    (4) Establish procedures for reimbursements pending the outcome or payment by alternate resources.

    § 136.503 Threshold cost.

    A Service Unit shall not be eligible for reimbursement from CHEF until its cost of treating any victim of a catastrophic illness or disaster for an episode of care has reached a certain threshold cost.

    (a) The threshold cost shall be established at the level of $19,000.

    (b) The threshold cost in subsequent years shall be calculated from the threshold cost of the previous year, increased by the percentage increase in the medical care expenditure category of the Consumer Price Index for all urban consumers (United States city average) for the 12-month period ending with December of the previous year. The revised threshold costs shall be published yearly in the Federal Register.

    § 136.504 Reimbursement procedure.

    Service Units whose scope of work and funding include the purchase of medical services from private or public vendors under PRC are eligible to participate. CHEF payments shall be based only on valid PRC expenditures, including expenditures for exigent medical circumstances without prior PRC authorization. Reimbursement from CHEF will not be made if applicable PRC requirements are not followed.

    (a) Claim Submission. Requests for reimbursement from CHEF must be submitted to the appropriate IHS Area Office. Area PRC programs will review requests for reimbursement to ensure compliance with PRC requirements, including but not limited to: Patient eligibility, medical necessity, notification requirements for emergent and non-emergent care, medical priorities, allowable expenditures, and eligibility for alternate resources.

    (b) Content of Claims. All claims submitted for reimbursement must include:

    (1) A fully completed Catastrophic Health Emergency Fund Reimbursement Request Form.

    (2) A statement of the provider's charges in paper form. The paper form must comply with the format required for the submission of claims under title XVIII of the Social Security Act. For example, charges may be printed on forms such as the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) 1450, American Dental Association (ADA) dental claim form, CMS 1500, or National Council for Prescription Drug Program (NCPDP) universal claim forms. The forms submitted for review must include specific appropriate diagnostic and procedure codes.

    (3) An explanation of benefits or statement of payment identifying how much was paid to the provider by the Service Unit for the Catastrophic Illness or Disaster. Payments to the patient or any other entity are ineligible for CHEF reimbursement.

    (4) The Division of Contract Care may request additional medical documentation describing the medical treatment or service provided, including but not limited to discharge summaries and/or medical progress notes. Cases may be submitted for 50% reimbursement of eligible expenses pending discharge summaries. Medical documentation must be received to close the CHEF case.

    (c) Limitation of Funds and Reimbursement Procedure. Because of the limitations of funds, full reimbursement cannot be guaranteed on all requests and will be based on the availability of funds at the time IHS processes the claim. To the extent funds are available, CHEF funds may not be used to cover the cost of services or treatment for which the funds were not approved. Unused funds, including but not limited to, funds unused due to overestimates, alternate resources, and cancellations must be returned to CHEF.

    § 136.505 Reimbursable services.

    The costs of catastrophic illnesses and disasters for distinct episodes of care are eligible for reimbursement from CHEF in accordance with the medical priorities of the Service. Only services that are related to a distinct episode of care will be eligible for reimbursement.

    (a) Some of the services that may qualify for reimbursement from the fund are:

    (1) Emergency treatment.

    (2) Emergent and acute inpatient hospitalization.

    (3) Ambulance services; air and ground (including patient escort travel costs).

    (4) Attending and consultant physician.

    (5) Functionally required reconstructive surgery.

    (6) Prostheses and other related items.

    (7) Reasonable rehabilitative therapy exclusive of custodial care not to exceed 30 days after discharge.

    (8) Skilled nursing care when the patient is discharged from the acute process to a skilled nursing facility.

    (b) Reserved.

    § 136.506 Alternate resources.

    (a) Expenses paid by alternate resources are not eligible for payment by PRC or reimbursement by CHEF. No payment shall be made from CHEF to any Service Unit to the extent that the provider of services is eligible to receive payment for the treatment from any other Federal, State, Tribal, local, or private source of reimbursement for which the patient is eligible. A patient shall be considered eligible for such resources and no payment shall be made from CHEF if:

    (1) The patient is eligible for alternate resources, or

    (2) The patient would be eligible for alternate resources if he or she were to apply for them, or

    (3) The patient would be eligible for alternate resources under Federal, State, Tribal or local law or regulation but for the patient's eligibility for PRC, or other health services, from the Indian Health Service or Indian Health Service funded programs.

    (b) The determination of whether a resource constitutes an alternate resource for the purpose of CHEF reimbursement shall be made by the Headquarters of the Indian Health Service, irrespective of whether the resource was determined to be an alternate resource at the time of PRC payment.

    § 136.507 Program integrity.

    (a) All CHEF records and documents will be subject to review by the respective Area and by Headquarters.

    (b) Internal audits and administrative reviews may be conducted as necessary to ensure compliance with PRC regulations and CHEF policies.

    § 136.508 Recovery of reimbursement funds.

    In the event a Service Unit has been reimbursed from CHEF for an episode of care and that same episode of care becomes eligible for and is paid by any Federal, State, Tribal, local, or private source (including third party insurance) the Service Unit shall return all CHEF funds received for that episode of care to the CHEF at IHS Headquarters. These recovered CHEF funds will be used to reimburse other valid CHEF requests.

    § 136.509 Reconsideration and appeals.

    (a) Any Service Unit to whom payment from CHEF is denied will be notified of the denial in writing together with a statement of the reason for the denial. In order to seek review of the denial decision, the Service Unit must follow the procedures set forth in paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section.

    (b) Within 30 days from the receipt of the denial provided in paragraph (a) the Service Unit may submit a request in writing for reconsideration of the original denial to the Division of Contract Care. The request for reconsideration must include, as applicable, corrections to the original claim submission necessary to overcome the denial; or a statement and supporting documentation establishing that the original denial was in error. If no additional information is submitted the original denial will stand.

    (c) If the original decision is affirmed on reconsideration, the Service Unit will be notified in writing and advised that an appeal may be taken to the Director, Indian Health Service, within 30 days of receipt of the denial. The appeal shall be in writing and shall set forth the grounds supporting the appeal. The decision of the Director, Indian Health Service, shall constitute the final administrative action.

    [FR Doc. 2016-01138 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4165-16-P
    81 16 Tuesday, January 26, 2016 Notices DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service [Docket No. APHIS-2015-0092] Notice of Request for Revision to and Extension of Approval of an Information Collection; Importation of Wooden Handicrafts From China AGENCY:

    Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Revision to and extension of approval of an information collection; comment request.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service's intention to request a revision to and extension of approval of an information collection associated with the regulations for the importation of wooden handicrafts from China.

    DATES:

    We will consider all comments that we receive on or before March 28, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments by either of the following methods:

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2015-0092.

    Postal Mail/Commercial Delivery: Send your comment to Docket No. APHIS-2015-0092, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, APHIS, Station 3A-03.8, 4700 River Road Unit 118, Riverdale, MD 20737-1238.

    Supporting documents and any comments we receive on this docket may be viewed at http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2015-0092 or in our reading room, which is located in room 1141 of the USDA South Building, 14th Street and Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC. Normal reading room hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays. To be sure someone is there to help you, please call (202) 799-7039 before coming.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For information on the regulations for the importation of wooden handicrafts from China, contact Mr. J. Tyrone Jones, Trade Director, PIM, PHP, PPQ, APHIS, 4700 River Road Unit 140, Riverdale, MD 20737; (301) 851-2344. For copies of more detailed information on the information collection, contact Ms. Kimberly Hardy, APHIS' Information Collection Coordinator, at (301) 851-2727.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title: Importation of Wooden Handicrafts From China.

    OMB Control Number: 0579-0357.

    Type of Request: Revision to and extension of approval of an information collection.

    Abstract: The Plant Protection Act (PPA, 7 U.S.C. 7701 et seq.) authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to restrict the importation, entry, or interstate movement of plants, plant products, and other articles to prevent the introduction of plant pests into the United States or their dissemination within the United States. Regulations authorized by the PPA concerning the importation of wooden handicrafts from China are contained in “Subpart—Logs, Lumber, and Other Wood Articles” (7 CFR 319.40-1 through 319.40-11).

    Section 319.40-5 of the regulations provides the requirements for the importation of wooden handicrafts from China. The regulations require the use of an identification tag, which is considered an information collection activity. All packages that are used to ship wooden handicrafts must be labeled with a merchandise tag containing the identity of the product manufacturer. This tag must be applied to each shipping package in China prior to export and remain attached to the package until it reaches the location at which the wooden handicraft will be sold in the United States.

    However, additional information collection activities, such as a fumigation certificate and an application for an import permit are also required for the importation of wooden handicrafts from China. Fumigation certificates are required to verify that the articles have been treated in accordance with 7 CFR part 305. In addition, an import permit must be issued by the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, and to receive an import permit, importers must complete an application for an import permit. We are adding these two activities to this information collection. As a result, the overall estimates of burden have increased.

    We are asking the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to approve our use of these information collection activities, as described, for an additional 3 years.

    The purpose of this notice is to solicit comments from the public (as well as affected agencies) concerning our information collection. These comments will help us:

    (1) Evaluate whether the collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Agency, including whether the information will have practical utility;

    (2) Evaluate the accuracy of our estimate of the burden of the collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;

    (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, through use, as appropriate, of automated, electronic, mechanical, and other collection technologies; e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses.

    Estimate of burden: The public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 0.002 hours per response.

    Respondents: Exporters of wooden handicrafts from China and national plant protection organization officials of China.

    Estimated annual number of respondents: 361.

    Estimated annual number of responses per respondent: 7,258.17.

    Estimated annual number of responses: 2,620,198.

    Estimated total annual burden on respondents: 5,250 hours. (Due to averaging, the total annual burden hours may not equal the product of the annual number of responses multiplied by the reporting burden per response.)

    All responses to this notice will be summarized and included in the request for OMB approval. All comments will also become a matter of public record.

    Done in Washington, DC, this 20th day of January 2016. Kevin Shea, Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01439 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-34-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Forest Service Eleven Point Resource Advisory Committee Meeting AGENCY:

    Forest Service, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice of meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The Eleven Point Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) will meet in Winona, Missouri. The committee is authorized under the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act (the Act) and operates in compliance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act. The purpose of the committee is to improve collaborative relationships and to provide advice and recommendations to the Forest Service concerning projects and funding consistent with Title II of the Act. RAC information can be found at the following Web site: http://cloudapps-usda-gov.force.com/FSSRS/RAC_page?id=001t0000002JcvzAAC.

    DATES:

    The meeting will be held February 23, 2016, at 6:30 p.m.

    All RAC meetings are subject to cancellation. For status of meeting prior to attendance, please contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting will be held at the Twin Pines Conservation Education Center, U.S. Highway 60, Route 1, Box 1998, Winona, Missouri.

    Written comments may be submitted as described under SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. All comments, including names and addresses when provided, are placed in the record and are available for public inspection and copying. The public may inspect comments received at Mark Twain National Forest (NF) Supervisor's Office. Please call ahead to facilitate entry into the building.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Richard Hall, RAC Coordinator, by phone at 573-341-7404 or via email at [email protected]

    Individuals who use telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1-800-877-8339 between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m., Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The purpose of the meeting is to:

    1. Review proposed forest management projects; and

    2. Make project recommendations to the Forest Service to be funded through Title II of the Act.

    The meeting is open to the public. The agenda will include time for people to make oral statements of three minutes or less. Individuals wishing to make an oral statement should request in writing by February 17, 2016, to be scheduled on the agenda. Anyone who would like to bring related matters to the attention of the committee may file written statements with the committee staff before or after the meeting. Written comments and requests for time for oral comments must be sent to Richard Hall, Mark Twain NF Supervisor's Office, 401 Fairgrounds Road, Rolla, Missouri 65401; by email to [email protected], or via facsimile to 573-364-6844.

    Meeting Accommodations: If you are a person requiring reasonable accommodation, please make requests in advance for sign language interpreting, assistive listening devices or other reasonable accommodation for access to the facility or proceedings by contacting the person listed in the section titled FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. All reasonable accommodation requests are managed on a case by case basis.

    Dated: January 20, 2016. William B. Nightingale, Forest Supervisor.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01543 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3411-15-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Forest Service Davy Crockett Resource Advisory Committee Meeting AGENCY:

    Forest Service, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice of meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The Davy Crockett Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) will meet in Ratcliff, Texas. The committee is authorized under the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act (Pub. L. 110-343) (the Act) and operates in compliance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act. The purpose of the committee is to improve collaborative relationships and to provide advice and recommendations to the Forest Service concerning projects and funding consistent with Title II of the Act. The meeting is open to the public. The purpose of the meeting is to discuss Title II projects, Stewardship projects and the implications of the Farm Bill.

    DATES:

    The meeting will be held from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, March 3, 2016.

    All RAC meetings are subject to cancellation. For status of meeting prior to attendance, please contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting will be held at the Davy Crockett National Forest (NF) Ranger Station, Conference Room, 18551 State Highway 7 East, Kennard, Texas. If you would like to attend via teleconference, please contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

    Written comments may be submitted as described under SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. All comments, including names and addresses when provided, are placed in the record and are available for public inspection and copying. The public may inspect comments received at the Davy Crockett NF Ranger Station. Please call ahead to facilitate entry into the building.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Michelle Rowe, RAC Coordinator, by phone at 936-655-2299 extension 230, or via email at [email protected]

    Individuals who use telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1-800-877-8339 between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m., Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Additional RAC information, including the meeting agenda and the meeting summary/minutes can be found at the following Web site: http://cloudapps-usda-gov.force.com/FSSRS/RAC_Page?id=001t0000002JcvhAAC. The agenda will include time for people to make oral statements of three minutes or less. Individuals wishing to make an oral statement should request in writing by February 13, 2016 to be scheduled on the agenda. Anyone who would like to bring related matters to the attention of the committee may file written statements with the committee staff before or after the meeting. Written comments and requests for time for oral comments must be sent to Gerald Lawrence, Jr., Designated Federal Officer, 18551 State Highway 7 East, Kennard, Texas 75847; by email to [email protected] or via facsimile to 936-655-2817.

    Meeting Accommodations: If you are a person requiring reasonable accommodation, please make requests in advance for sign language interpreting, assistive listening devices or other reasonable accommodation for access to the facility or proceedings by contacting the person listed in the section titled FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. All reasonable accommodation requests are managed on a case by case basis.

    Dated: January 15, 2016. Gerald Lawrence, Jr., Designated Federal Officer,Davy Crockett National Forest RAC.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01436 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3411-15-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE National Institute of Food and Agriculture Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request January 20, 2016.

    The Department of Agriculture has submitted the following information collection requirement(s) to OMB for review and clearance under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Public Law 104-13. Comments are requested regarding (1) whether the collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (2) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of burden 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 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.

    Comments regarding this information collection received by February 25, 2016 will be considered. Written comments should be addressed to: Desk Officer for Agriculture, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget (OMB), New Executive Office Building, 725—17th Street, NW., Washington, DC 20502. Commenters are encouraged to submit their comments to OMB via email to: [email protected] or fax (202) 395-5806 and to Departmental Clearance Office, USDA, OCIO, Mail Stop 7602, Washington, DC 20250-7602. Copies of the submission(s) may be obtained by calling (202) 720-8958.

    An agency may not conduct or sponsor a collection of information unless the collection of information displays a currently valid OMB control number and the agency informs potential persons who are to respond to the collection of information that such persons are not required to respond to the collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

    National Institute of Food and Agriculture

    Title: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program

    OMB Control Number: 0524-NEW

    Summary Of Collection: The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) makes competitively awarded grants to qualified small businesses to support high quality, advanced concepts research related to important scientific problems and opportunities in agriculture that could lead to significant public benefit if successful. The objectives of the SBIR Program are to: stimulate technological innovation in the private sector; strengthen the role of small businesses in meeting Federal research and development needs; increase private sector commercialization of innovations derived from USDA-supported research and development efforts; and foster and encourage participation by women-owned and socially and economically disadvantaged small business firms in technological innovation. The USDA SBIR Program is administered by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) of the USDA.

    Need And Use Of The Information: The USDA SBIR Program Office proposes to contact Phase II awardees to determine their success in achieving commercial application of a market ready technology that was funded under the USDA SBIR Program. The survey would collect information from Phase II companies that received funding during the years of 1994 to 2014. Data from the survey will be used to provide information that currently does not exist. The data will be used internally by the USDA SBIR Office to identify past and current activities of Phase II grantees in the areas of technology development, commercialization success, product development or services, and factors that may have prevented the technology from entering into the marketplace.

    Description of Respondents: Business or other for-profit

    Number of Respondents: 499

    Frequency of Responses: Reporting: On occasion

    Total Burden Hours: 499

    Ruth Brown, Departmental Information Collection Clearance Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01389 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-09-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Rural Utilities Service Information Collection Activity; Comment Request AGENCY:

    Rural Utilities Service, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice and request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35, as amended), the Rural Utilities Service (RUS) an agency delivering the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development Utilities Programs invites comments on this information collection for which approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) will be requested.

    DATES:

    Comments on this notice must be received by March 28, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Thomas P. Dickson, Acting Director, Program Development and Regulatory Analysis, Rural Utilities Service, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., STOP 1522, Room 5159 South Building, Washington, DC 20250-1522. FAX: (202)720-8435. Telephone: (202) 690-4492. Email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) regulation (5 CFR 1320) implementing provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-13) requires that interested members of the public and affected agencies have an opportunity to comment on information collection and recordkeeping activities (see 5 CFR 1320.8(d)). This notice identifies an information collection that RUS is submitting to OMB for extension.

    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 will have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the Agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on 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. Comments may be sent to: Michele L. Brooks, Program Development and Regulatory Analysis, Rural Utilities Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, STOP 1522, 1400 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20250-1522. FAX: (202)720-8435.

    Title: Review Rating Summary, RUS Form 300, 7 CFR part 1730.

    OMB Control Number: 0572-0025.

    Type of Request: Extension of a currently approved information collection.

    Abstract: RUS manages loan programs in accordance with the RE Act of 1936, as amended (7 U.S.C. 901 et seq.). An important part of safeguarding loan security is to see that RUS financed facilities are being responsibly used, adequately operated, and adequately maintained. Future needs must be anticipated to ensure that facilities will continue to produce revenue and loans will be repaid as required by the RUS mortgage. A periodic operations and maintenance (O&M) review, using the RUS Form 300, in accordance with 7 CFR part 1730, is an effective means for RUS to determine whether the Borrower's systems are being properly operated and maintained, thereby protecting the loan collateral. The O&M review is also used to rate facilities and can be used for appraisals of collateral as prescribed by OMB Circular A-129, Policies for Federal Credit Programs and Non-Taxable Receivables.

    Estimate of Burden: Public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 4 hours per response.

    Respondents: Not-for-profit institutions.

    Estimated Number of Respondents: 217.

    Estimated Number of Responses per Respondent: 1.

    Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 868.

    Brandon McBride, Administrator, Rural Utilities Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01437 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-15-P
    COMMISSION ON CIVIL RIGHTS Notice of Public Meeting of the Michigan Advisory Committee for a Meeting to Discuss Preparations for a Public Hearing Regarding the Civil Rights Impact of Civil Forfeiture Practices in the State AGENCY:

    U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

    ACTION:

    Announcement of meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    Notice is hereby given, pursuant to the provisions of the rules and regulations of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights (Commission) and the Federal Advisory Committee Act that the Michigan Advisory Committee (Committee) will hold a meeting on Tuesday, February 09, 2016, at 10:00 a.m. EST for the purpose of discussing preparations for a public hearing regarding the civil rights impact of civil asset forfeiture in the State.

    This meeting is available to the public through the following toll-free call-in number: 888-359-3624, conference ID: 6714810. Any interested member of the public may call this number and listen to the meeting. An open comment period will be provided to allow members of the public to make a statement at the end of the meeting. The conference call operator will ask callers to identify themselves, the organization they are affiliated with (if any), and an email address prior to placing callers into the conference room. Callers can expect to incur regular charges for calls they initiate over wireless lines according to their wireless plan, and the Commission will not refund any incurred charges. Callers will incur no charge for calls they initiate over land-line connections to the toll-free telephone number. Persons with hearing impairments may also follow the proceedings by first calling the Federal Relay Service at 1-800-977-8339 and providing the Service with the conference call number and conference ID number.

    Member of the public are also entitled to submit written comments; the comments must be received in the regional office within 30 days following the meeting. Written comments may be mailed to the Regional Programs Unit, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, 55 W. Monroe St., Suite 410, Chicago, IL 60615. They may also be faxed to the Commission at (312) 353-8324, or emailed to Carolyn Allen at [email protected] Persons who desire additional information may contact the Regional Programs Unit at (312) 353-8311.

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

    Agenda Welcome and Introductions
    Donna Budnick, Chair Preparatory Discussion for Public Hearing; Civil Rights Impact of Civil Forfeiture Practices in Michigan Future plans and actions Open Comment Adjournment DATES:

    The meeting will be held on Tuesday, February 09, 2016, at 10:00 a.m. EST.

    Public Call Information:

    Dial: 888-359-3624

    Conference ID: 6714810

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

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

    Dated: January 20, 2016. David Mussatt, Chief, Regional Programs Unit.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01413 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6335-01-P
    COMMISSION ON CIVIL RIGHTS Notice of Public Meeting of the Hawai`i State Advisory Committee for the Purpose of Considering Its Report on Micronesian Immigration to Hawai`i AGENCY:

    U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

    ACTION:

    Announcement of meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    Notice is hereby given, pursuant to the provisions of the rules and regulations of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights (Commission) and the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) that a meeting of the Hawai`i State Advisory Committee (Committee) to the Commission will be held at 2:00 p.m. HST on Wednesday, February 17, 2016, for the purpose of considering the Committee's report on Micronesian immigration to Hawai`i.

    This meeting is available to the public through the following toll-free call-in number: 888-430-8709, conference ID: 1935434. Any interested member of the public may call this number and listen to the meeting. Callers can expect to incur charges for calls they initiate over wireless lines, and the Commission will not refund any incurred charges. Callers will incur no charge for calls they initiate over land-line connections to the toll-free telephone number. Persons with hearing impairments may also follow the proceedings by first calling the Federal Relay Service at 1-800-977-8339 and providing the Service with the conference call number and conference ID number.

    Members of the public are entitled to make comments during the open period at the end of the meeting. Members of the public may also submit written comments. The comments must be received in the Western Regional Office of the Commission by Thursday, March 17, 2016. The address is Western Regional Office, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, 300 N. Los Angeles Street, Suite 2010, Los Angeles, CA 90012. Persons wishing to email their comments may do so by sending them to Peter Minarik, Regional Director, Western Regional Office, at [email protected] Persons who desire additional information should contact the Western Regional Office, at (213) 894-3437, (or for hearing impaired TDD 913-551-1414), or by email to [email protected] Hearing-impaired persons who will attend the meeting and require the services of a sign language interpreter should contact the Regional Office at least ten (10) working days before the scheduled date of the meeting.

    Records and documents discussed during the meeting will be available for public viewing prior to and after the meeting at http://facadatabase.gov/committee/meetings.aspx?cid=263 and clicking on the “Meeting Details” and “Documents” links. Records generated from this meeting may also be inspected and reproduced at the Western Regional Office, as they become available, both before and after the meeting. Persons interested in the work of this Committee are directed to the Commission's Web site, http://www.usccr.gov, or may contact the Western Regional Office at the above email or street address.

    Agenda: Committee discussion of the Committee's report on Micronesian immigration Public comment Adjournment DATES:

    Wednesday, February 17, 2016

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

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

    Dated January 21, 2016. David Mussatt, Chief, Regional Programs Coordination Unit.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01440 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6335-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request

    The Department of Commerce will submit to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for clearance the following proposal for collection of information under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. chapter 35).

    Agency: U.S. Census Bureau.

    Title: Generic Clearance for 2020 Census Field Tests to Automate Field Data Collection Activities.

    OMB Control Number: 0607-0971.

    Form Number(s): TBD.

    Type of Request: Reinstatement, without change, of a previously approved collection for which approval has expired.

    Number of Respondents: 36,000.

    Average Hours per Response: 0.167.

    Burden Hours: 6000.

    Needs and Uses: All activities described directly support the Census Bureau's efforts to maintain or improve quality while controlling costs in the 2020 Census. The information collected from households during these tests is to research new technologies to plan the 2020 Census and motivating messages to encourage respondents to participate. The Census Bureau will not publish any tabulations or population estimates from the substantive results of tests conducted under this clearance. However, methodological papers may be written that include some tallies of response characteristics or problems, and responses may be used to inform future research studies building upon the results of these early tests.

    Affected Public: Individuals and households.

    Frequency: Once.

    Respondent's Obligation: Mandatory.

    Legal Authority: Title 13, Section 9.

    This information collection request may be viewed at www.reginfo.gov. Follow the instructions to view Department of Commerce collections currently under review by OMB.

    Written comments and recommendations for the proposed information collection should be sent within 30 days of publication of this notice to [email protected] or fax to (202) 395-5806.

    Sheleen Dumas, Departmental PRA Lead, Office of the Chief Information Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01395 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-07-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [S-4-2016] Foreign-Trade Zone 287—Tunica County, Mississippi; Application for Subzone; FTZ Networks, Inc., Olive Branch, Mississippi

    An application has been submitted to the Foreign-Trade Zones Board (the Board) by Tunica County, Mississippi, grantee of FTZ 287, requesting subzone status for the facility of FTZ Networks, Inc., located in Olive Branch, Mississippi. The application was submitted pursuant to the provisions of the Foreign-Trade Zones Act, as amended (19 U.S.C. 81a-81u), and the regulations of the Board (15 CFR part 400). It was formally docketed on January 19, 2016.

    The proposed subzone (3.767 acres) is located at 5755 FedEx Lane, Suite 110, Olive Branch. The proposed subzone would be subject to the existing activation limit of FTZ 287. No authorization for production activity has been requested at this time.

    In accordance with the Board's regulations, Camille Evans of the FTZ Staff is designated examiner to review the application and make recommendations to the Executive Secretary.

    Public comment is invited from interested parties. Submissions shall be addressed to the Board's Executive Secretary at the address below. The closing period for their receipt is March 7, 2016. Rebuttal comments in response to material submitted during the foregoing period may be submitted during the subsequent 15-day period to March 21, 2016.

    A copy of the application will be available for public inspection at the Office of the Executive Secretary, Foreign-Trade Zones Board, Room 21013, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230-0002, and in the “Reading Room” section of the Board's Web site, which is accessible via www.trade.gov/ftz.

    For further information, contact Camille Evans at [email protected] or (202) 482-2350.

    Dated: January 19, 2016. Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01562 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [B-03-2016] Foreign-Trade Zone 30—Salt Lake City, Utah; Application for Subzone, Cabela's Inc.; Tooele, Utah

    An application has been submitted to the Foreign-Trade Zones (FTZ) Board by the Salt Lake City Corporation, grantee of FTZ 30, requesting subzone status for the facility of Cabela's Inc., located in Tooele, Utah. The application was submitted pursuant to the provisions of the Foreign-Trade Zones Act, as amended (19 U.S.C. 81a-81u), and the regulations of the FTZ Board (15 CFR part 400). It was formally docketed on January 20, 2016.

    The proposed subzone (32.4 acres) is located at 2000 West Cabela's Way, Tooele, Utah. No authorization for production activity has been requested at this time.

    In accordance with the FTZ Board's regulations, Christopher Kemp of the FTZ Staff is designated examiner to review the application and make recommendations to the FTZ Board.

    Public comment is invited from interested parties. Submissions shall be addressed to the FTZ Board's Executive Secretary at the address below. The closing period for their receipt is March 7, 2016. Rebuttal comments in response to material submitted during the foregoing period may be submitted during the subsequent 15-day period to March 21, 2016.

    A copy of the application will be available for public inspection at the Office of the Executive Secretary, Foreign-Trade Zones Board, Room 21013, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230-0002, and in the “Reading Room” section of the FTZ Board's Web site, which is accessible via www.trade.gov/ftz.

    For further information, contact Christopher Kemp at [email protected] or (202) 482-0862.

    Dated: January 20, 2016. Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01575 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [S-151-2015] Approval of Subzone Status; CNH Industrial America LLC; Benson, Minnesota

    On November 9, 2015, the Acting Executive Secretary of the Foreign-Trade Zones (FTZ) Board docketed an application submitted by the Greater Metropolitan Area Foreign Trade Zone Commission, grantee of FTZ 119, requesting subzone status subject to the existing activation limit of FTZ 119 on behalf of CNH Industrial America LLC in Benson, Minnesota.

    The application was processed in accordance with the FTZ Act and Regulations, including notice in the Federal Register inviting public comment (80 FR 70752, November 16, 2015). The FTZ staff examiner reviewed the application and determined that it meets the criteria for approval.

    Pursuant to the authority delegated to the FTZ Board's Executive Secretary (15 CFR Sec. 400.36(f)), the application to establish Subzone 119L is approved, subject to the FTZ Act and the Board's regulations, including Section 400.13, and further subject to FTZ 119's 2,000-acre activation limit.

    Dated: January 20, 2016. Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01574 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Bureau of Industry and Security Ribway Airlines Company Limited, 54 Kairaba Avenue, Kanifing Municipality, WRC, The Gambia AF-Aviation Limited, Sebring House, 4 Newbridge Drive, Wolverhampton, WV6 ODF, United Kingdom Andy Farmer, Sebring House, 4 Newbridge Drive, Wolverhampton, WV6 ODF, United Kingdom John Edward Meadows, 50 St. Leonards Road, Bexhill on Sea, East Sussex, TN40 1JB, United Kingdom Jeffrey John James Ashfield, 50 St. Leonards Road, Bexhill on Sea, East Sussex, TN40 1JB, United Kingdom Respondents

    Pursuant to Section 766.24 of the Export Administration Regulations (the “Regulations” or “EAR”),1 the Bureau of Industry and Security (“BIS”), U.S. Department of Commerce, through its Office of Export Enforcement (“OEE”), has requested that I issue an Order temporarily denying, for a period of 180 days, the export privileges under the Regulations of: Ribway Airlines Company Limited, Af-Aviation Limited, Andy Farmer, John Edward Meadows, and Jeffrey John James Ashfield.

    1 The EAR are currently codified at 15 CFR parts 730-774 (2015). The EAR issued under the Export Administration Act of 1979, as amended (50 U.S.C. app. 2401-2420 (2000)) (“EAA”). Since August 21, 2001, the Act has been in lapse and the President, through Executive Order 13222 of August 17, 2001 (3 CFR, 2001 Comp. 783 (2002)), which has been extended by successive Presidential Notices, the most recent being that of August 7, 2015 (80 FR 48,223 (Aug. 11, 2015)), has continued the Regulations in effect under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1701, et seq.) (2006 & Supp. IV 2010).

    Pursuant to Section 766.24, BIS may issue an order temporarily denying a respondent's export privileges upon a showing that the order is necessary in the public interest to prevent an “imminent violation” of the Regulations. 15 CFR 766.24(b)(1) and 776.24(d). “A violation may be `imminent' either in time or degree of likelihood.” 15 CFR 766.24(b)(3). BIS may show “either that a violation is about to occur, or that the general circumstances of the matter under investigation or case under criminal or administrative charges demonstrate a likelihood of future violations.” Id. As to the likelihood of future violations, BIS may show that the violation under investigation or charge “is significant, deliberate, covert and/or likely to occur again, rather than technical or negligent [.]” Id. A “lack of information establishing the precise time a violation may occur does not preclude a finding that a violation is imminent, so long as there is sufficient reason to believe the likelihood of a violation.” Id.

    In its request, BIS has presented evidence that on or about December 30, 2015, Af-Aviation Limited, a United Kingdom company which holds itself out as providing aircraft ferry flight and trip planning services, intends to ferry/reexport two Boeing 737 aircraft, with manufacturer serial numbers 26458 and 26444, respectively, from Romania to Iran. 2 Moreover, publically available aviation databases corroborate that MSNs 26458 and 26444 are destined to Iran, and specifically to Caspian Airlines.3 The reexport of these aircraft requires U.S. Government authorization pursuant to Sections 742.8 and 746.7 of the Regulations. No U.S. Government authorization has been applied for or authorized for the reexport of these two aircraft to Iran. United Kingdom corporate registration documents list Andy Farmer as the director of Af-Aviation Limited. Both aircraft are currently registered in Gambia bearing tail numbers C5-AMH (MSN 26458) and C5-AND (MSN 26444) and according to the registration documents are currently owned by Ribway Airlines Company Limited.

    2 Both Boeing 737s are subject to the EAR and are classified under Export Control Classification Number (“ECCN”) 9A991.b and are controlled for anti-terrorism reasons.

    3 Pursuant to Executive Order 13324, Caspian Airlines was designated a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (“SDGT”) by the U.S. Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”) on August 29, 2014. See 79 FR 55,072 (Sep. 15, 2014).

    Finally, both aircraft were insured under a policy issued by a United Kingdom insurance company. On December 30, 2015, those insurance contracts were cancelled and the insurance company notified John Edward Meadows and Jeffrey John James Ashfield, both United Kingdom citizens, of the cancellation. OEE's evidence indicates that John Meadows and Jeffrey Ashfield were both involved in brokering the sale of MSNs 26458 and 26444 to Caspian Airlines. OEE's investigation also reveals prior business dealings between Meadows and Ashfield and Caspian Airlines.

    I find that the evidence presented by BIS demonstrates that a violation of the Regulations is imminent in both time and degree of likelihood. As such, a temporary denial order (“TDO”) is needed to give notice to persons and companies in the United States and abroad that they should cease dealing with Ribway Airlines Company Limited, Af-Aviation Limited, Andy Farmer, John Edward Meadows, and Jeffrey John James Ashfield in export or reexport transactions involving items subject to the EAR. Such a TDO is consistent with the public interest to preclude future violations of the EAR.

    Accordingly, I find that an Order denying the export privileges of Ribway Airlines Company Limited, Af-Aviation Limited, Andy Farmer, John Edward Meadows, and Jeffrey John James Ashfield is necessary, in the public interest, to prevent an imminent violation of the EAR.

    This Order is being issued on an ex parte basis without a hearing based upon BIS's showing of an imminent violation in accordance with Section 766.24 of the Regulations.

    It is therefore ordered:

    First, that RIBWAY AIRLINES COMPANY LIMITED, 54 Kairaba Avenue, Kanifing Municipality, WCR, The Gambia; AF-AVIATION LIMITED, Sebring House, 4 Newbridge Drive, Wolverhampton, WV6 ODF, United Kingdom; ANDY FARMER, Sebring House, 4 Newbridge Drive, Wolverhampton, WV6 ODF, United Kingdom, JOHN EDWARD MEADOWS, 50 St. Leonards Road, Bexhill on Sea, East Sussex, TN40 1JB, United Kingdom; and JEFFREY JOHN JAMES ASHFIELD, 50 St. Leonards Road, Bexhill on Sea, East Sussex, TN40 1JB, United Kingdom, and when acting for or on their behalf, any successors or assigns, agents, or employees (each a “Denied Person” and collectively the “Denied Persons”) may not, directly or indirectly, participate in any way in any transaction involving any commodity, software or technology (hereinafter collectively referred to as “item”) exported or to be exported from the United States that is subject to the Export Administration Regulations (“EAR”), or in any other activity subject to the EAR including, but not limited to:

    A. Applying for, obtaining, or using any license, License Exception, or export control document;

    B. Carrying on negotiations concerning, or ordering, buying, receiving, using, selling, delivering, storing, disposing of, forwarding, transporting, financing, or otherwise servicing in any way, any transaction involving any item exported or to be exported from the United States that is subject to the EAR, or in any other activity subject to the EAR; or

    C. Benefitting in any way from any transaction involving any item exported or to be exported from the United States that is subject to the EAR, or in any other activity subject to the EAR.

    Second, that no person may, directly or indirectly, do any of the following:

    A. Export or reexport to or on behalf of a Denied Person any item subject to the EAR;

    B. Take any action that facilitates the acquisition or attempted acquisition by a Denied Person of the ownership, possession, or control of any item subject to the EAR that has been or will be exported from the United States, including financing or other support activities related to a transaction whereby a Denied Person acquires or attempts to acquire such ownership, possession or control;

    C. Take any action to acquire from or to facilitate the acquisition or attempted acquisition from a Denied Person of any item subject to the EAR that has been exported from the United States;

    D. Obtain from a Denied Person in the United States any item subject to the EAR with knowledge or reason to know that the item will be, or is intended to be, exported from the United States; or

    E. Engage in any transaction to service any item subject to the EAR that has been or will be exported from the United States and which is owned, possessed or controlled by a Denied Person, or service any item, of whatever origin, that is owned, possessed or controlled by a Denied Person if such service involves the use of any item subject to the EAR that has been or will be exported from the United States. For purposes of this paragraph, servicing means installation, maintenance, repair, modification or testing.

    THIRD, that, after notice and opportunity for comment as provided in section 766.23 of the EAR, any other person, firm, corporation, or business organization related to a Denied Person by affiliation, ownership, control, or position of responsibility in the conduct of trade or related services may also be made subject to the provisions of this Order.

    In accordance with the provisions of Section 766.24(e) of the EAR, Respondents may, at any time, appeal this Order by filing a full written statement in support of the appeal with the Office of the Administrative Law Judge, U.S. Coast Guard ALJ Docketing Center, 40 South Gay Street, Baltimore, Maryland 21202-4022.

    In accordance with the provisions of Section 766.24(d) of the EAR, BIS may seek renewal of this Order by filing a written request not later than 20 days before the expiration date. Respondents may oppose a request to renew this Order by filing a written submission with the Assistant Secretary for Export Enforcement, which must be received not later than seven days before the expiration date of the Order.

    A copy of this Order shall be served on Respondents and shall be published in the Federal Register.

    This Order is effective upon issuance and shall remain in effect for 180 days.

    Dated: January 19, 2016. David W. Mills, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Export Enforcement.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01438 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-570-601] Tapered Roller Bearings and Parts Thereof, Finished and Unfinished, From the People's Republic of China: Notice of Correction to the Final Results of the 2013-2014 Antidumping Duty Administrative Review AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice of Correction.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Blaine Wiltse, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-6345.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On January 12, 2016, the Department of Commerce (the Department) published in the Federal Register the final results of the 2013-2014 administrative review of the antidumping duty order on tapered roller bearings and parts thereof, finished and unfinished, from the People's Republic of China.1 The period of review is June 1, 2013, through May 31, 2014. In the Final Results, the Department incorrectly assigned a weighted-average dumping margin of 0.91 percent to the company “Changshan Peer Bearing Co., Ltd./Shanghai General Bearing Co., Ltd.” 2 However, the weighted-average dumping margin should have been assigned, instead, to Changshan Peer Bearing Co., Ltd. alone.3 As a result, we now correct the final results of the 2013-2014 administrative review as noted above.

    1See Tapered Roller Bearings and Parts Thereof, Finished and Unfinished, from the People's Republic of China: Final Results of the Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2013-2014, 81 FR 1396 (January 12, 2016) (Final Results).

    2Id., at 1397.

    3Id., at Comment 1 in the accompanying Issues and Decision Memorandum.

    This correction to the final results of administrative review is issued and published in accordance with sections 751(a)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended.

    Dated: January 19, 2016. Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary, for Enforcement and Compliance.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01499 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-570-964; A-201-838] Seamless Refined Copper Pipe and Tube From the People's Republic of China and Mexico: Preliminary Results of the Sunset Reviews of the Antidumping Duty Orders AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce (“the Department”) preliminarily finds that revocation of the antidumping duty orders on seamless refined copper pipe and tube (“copper pipe and tube”) from the People's Republic of China (“PRC”) and Mexico would likely lead to continuation or recurrence of dumping, at the levels indicated in the “Preliminary Results of Sunset Reviews” section of this notice.

    DATES:

    Effective Date: January 26, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Robert Galantucci, AD/CVD Operations, Office IV, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-2923.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    On November 22, 2010, the Department published the antidumping duty orders on copper pipe and tube from the PRC and Mexico, as amended.1 On October 1, 2015, the Department published the notice of initiation of the sunset reviews of the Orders pursuant to section 751(c) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the “Act”).2 The Ad Hoc Coalition for Domestically Produced Seamless Refined Copper Pipe and Tube and its individual members, Cerro Flow Products, LLC, Wieland Copper Products, LLC, Howell Metal Company, Mueller Copper Tube Products, Inc., and Mueller Copper Tube Company, Inc. (collectively, “domestic interested parties”), submitted adequate and timely notices of intent to participate in these sunset reviews within the 15-day deadline specified in 19 CFR 351.218(d)(1)(i). On November 2, 2015, domestic interested parties and respondent interested party Golden Dragon 3 submitted adequate substantive responses to the notice of initiation within the 30-day deadline specified in 19 CFR 351.218(d)(3). As a result, pursuant to section 751(c)(3)(B) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.218(e)(ii), the Department is conducting full sunset reviews of the Orders.

    1See Seamless Refined Copper Pipe and Tube From Mexico and the People's Republic of China: Antidumping Duty Orders and Amended Final Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value From Mexico, 75 FR 71070 (November 22, 2010) (“Orders”).

    2See Seamless Refined Copper Pipe and Tube From China and Mexico; Institution of Five-Year Reviews, 80 FR 59186 (October 1, 2015) (“Initiation FR Notice”).

    3 In case number A-570-964 (the PRC), the substantive response was filed on behalf of Golden Dragon Precise Copper Tube Group, Inc., Hong Kong GD Trading Co., Ltd., GD Copper Cooperatief UA, Golden Dragon Holding (Hong Kong) International, Ltd. and GD Copper (U.S.A.), Inc. In case number A-201-838 (Mexico), the substantive response was filed on behalf of GD Affiliates S. de R.L. de C.V., GD Copper S. de R.L. de C.V., Golden Dragon Precise Copper Tube Group, Inc., Hong Kong GD Trading Co., Ltd., GD Copper Cooperatief UA, Golden Dragon Holding (Hong Kong) International, Ltd. and GD Copper (U.S.A.), Inc. The Department refers to all of these companies collectively as “Golden Dragon”.

    Scope of the Orders

    For the purpose of these Orders, the products covered are all seamless circular refined copper pipes and tubes. The products subject to the Orders are currently classifiable under subheadings 7411.10.1030 and 7411.10.1090 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (“HTSUS”). Products subject to the Orders may also enter under HTSUS subheadings 7407.10.1500, 7419.99.5050, 8415.90.8065 and 8415.90.8085. Although the HTSUS subheadings are provided for convenience and customs purposes, the written description of the scope of the Orders is dispositive.

    For a full description of the scope of the Orders, see the “Preliminary Decision Memorandum for the Full Sunset Reviews of the Antidumping Duty Orders on Seamless Refined Copper Pipe and Tube from the People's Republic of China and Mexico,” dated concurrently with this notice (“Preliminary Decision Memorandum”). The Preliminary Decision Memorandum is a public document and is on file electronically via Enforcement and Compliance's Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Centralized Electronic Service System (ACCESS). ACCESS is available to registered users at http://access.trade.gov. In addition, a complete version of the Preliminary Decision Memorandum can be accessed at http://enforcement.trade.gov/frn/. Both the signed and electronic versions of the Preliminary Decision Memorandum are identical in content.

    Analysis of Comments Received

    All issues raised in these sunset reviews are addressed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum. The issues discussed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum include the likelihood of continuation or recurrence of dumping and the magnitude of the margins likely to prevail if the Orders were to be revoked.

    Preliminary Results of Sunset Reviews

    Pursuant to section 752(c)(3) of the Act, the Department determines that revocation of the Orders would likely lead to continuation or recurrence of dumping at weighted-average dumping margins up to 60.85 percent for the PRC and up to 27.16 percent for Mexico.

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

    Dated: January 19, 2016. Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance. Appendix—List of Topics Discussed in the Issues and Decision Memorandum I. Summary II. Background III. History of the Orders IV. Scope of the Orders V. Discussion of the Issues 1. Likelihood of Continuation or Recurrence of Dumping 2. Magnitude of the Margins Likely to Prevail VI. Preliminary Results of Sunset Reviews VII. Recommendation
    [FR Doc. 2016-01498 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-570-601] Tapered Roller Bearings and Parts Thereof, Finished and Unfinished, From the People's Republic of China: Notice of Court Decision Not in Harmony With Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review and Notice of Amended Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2007-2008 AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    On December 21, 2015, the United States Court of International Trade (“CIT” or “Court”) issued its final judgment 1 sustaining the Department of Commerce's (the “Department”) final results of redetermination 2 issued pursuant to the CIT's remand order in Peer Bearing Company—Changshan v. United States, 914 F. Supp. 2d 1343 (CIT 2013) (“CPZ 07-08 II”), with respect to the Department's final results 3 of the 2007-2008 administrative review of the antidumping duty order on certain tapered roller bearings and parts thereof, finished and unfinished (“TRBs”), from the People's Republic of China (“PRC”). Consistent with the decision of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (“CAFC”) in Timken Co. v. United States, 893 F.2d 337 (Fed. Cir. 1990) (“Timken”), as clarified by Diamond Sawblades Mfrs. Coalition v. United States, 626 F.3d 1374 (Fed. Cir. 2010) (“Diamond Sawblades”), the Department is notifying the public that the final judgment in this case is not in harmony with the Department's Final Results and is amending the Final Results with respect to the dumping margin determined for the sole mandatory respondent in the underlying review, Peer Bearing Company—Changshan (“CPZ”).

    1See Peer Bearing Company (Changshan) v. United States, Court No. 10-00013, Slip Op. 15-142 (CIT December 21, 2015) (“CPZ 07-08 III”), and accompanying judgment order.

    2See Final Results of Redetermination Pursuant to Court Remand, Peer Bearing Company—Changshan. v. United States, Court No. 10-00013, Slip Op. 13-72 (CIT 2013), dated April 30, 2014 (“Second Remand Redetermination”).

    3See Tapered Roller Bearings and Parts Thereof, Finished and Unfinished, from the People's Republic of China: Final Results of the 2007-2008 Administrative Review of the Antidumping Duty Order, 75 FR 844 (January 6, 2010) (“Final Results”) and accompanying Issues and Decision Memorandum (“IDM”).

    DATES:

    Effective Date: December 31, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Alex Rosen, Office III, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-7814.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On November 21, 2011, the CIT issued its initial opinion on the underlying proceeding and remanded the Final Results, ordering that the Department: (1) Redetermine the surrogate value used to value bearing-quality steel bar inputs; (2) redetermine the surrogate value used to value bearing-quality steel wire rod inputs; and (3) reconsider, and modify as appropriate, its determination of the country of origin of merchandise finished and assembled into finished TRBs by a CPZ affiliate in Thailand from finished and unfinished TRB component parts manufactured in the PRC by CPZ.4 Specifically, with respect to the latter issue of country of origin, the Court held that the Department's findings that the “third-country processor's costs as compared to each product's COM {(Cost of Manufacture)} are not significant,” is “not supported by substantial evidence on the record, which contains evidence that the processing costs in Thailand accounted for 42 percent of the total cost of manufacturing.” 5 The Court held that the Department “may not disregard record evidence that detracts significantly from, and appears to refute, one of the findings on which the Department relied.” 6 The Court instructed the Department “to ensure that its redetermination. . . is based on findings supported by substantial evidence on the record of this case.” 7

    4See Peer Bearing Company—Changshan v. United States, 804 F. Supp. 2d 1337 (CIT 2011) (“CPZ 07-08 I”). While the third county in which the further processing took place was treated as business proprietary information in the underlying administrative review, along with the percentage cost of manufacture (discussed below), CPZ made this information public during the litigation.

    5See CPZ 07-08 I, 804 F. Supp. 2d at 1342.

    6Id.

    7Id.

    On April 10, 2012, pursuant to the Court's orders in CPZ 07-08 I, the Department: (1) Reconsidered the Indian data used to value bearing-quality steel bar inputs in the Final Results and instead valued CPZ's steel bar inputs using Thai import data, and (2) revised the surrogate value used to value CPZ's steel wire rod inputs using data corresponding to steel rod that is “of circular cross-section.” 8 With respect to the country of origin issue, the Department reconsidered its determination, applying its established criteria for determining whether merchandise is substantially transformed in another country. The Department expanded upon and further supported the existing findings as to the substantial transformation test employed in the Final Results. 9 The Department reconsidered one finding with respect to the significance of the quantitative value added by Thai processing (i.e., one of six aspects of the underlying analysis in the First Remand Redetermination), finding that this prong of the analysis could support a determination that the Thai processing substantially transformed the merchandise in question.10 However, because further analysis of the remaining substantial transformation criteria continued to support the initial finding from the Final Results, the Department ultimately determined that the totality of the circumstances indicated that the processing that took place in Thailand during the period of review (“POR”) did not constitute substantial transformation so as to confer a new country of origin of the merchandise in question for antidumping purposes.11

    8See Final Results of Redetermination Pursuant to Court Remand, Peer Bearing Company—Changshan v. United States, Court No. 10-00013, Slip Op. 11-143 (CIT 2011), dated April 10, 2012 (“First Remand Redetermination”), at 4-6 and 28.

    9See First Remand Redetermination, at 8-17.

    10Id.

    11Id.

    On June 6, 2013, the CIT issued CPZ 07-08 II, in which it sustained the Department's redetermination of the surrogate values for CPZ's steel bar and steel wire rod inputs,12 but again remanded the Department's country of origin determination. Specifically, citing “flaws in the Department's analysis” 13 with respect to each of the six criteria comprising the Department's substantial transformation test, the Court instructed the Department to “reach a new country of origin determination because the record lacked substantial evidence to support the Department's determination that the TRBs which achieved final processing in Thailand were products of China for purposes of the antidumping duty order.” 14 Consistent with the CIT's remand order, the Department under protest redetermined the country of origin for certain merchandise under review and revised the dumping margin calculations to exclude U.S. sales of TRBs further processed in Thailand.15 In particular, the Department revised its findings with respect to five of the six criteria in its substantial transformation test, consistent with the Court's order. Along with the surrogate value changes sustained in CPZ 07-08 II, the Department calculated a weighted-average dumping margin for CPZ of 6.24 percent.16

    12See CPZ 07-08 II, 914 F. Supp. 2d at 1347.

    13Id., 914 F. Supp. 2d at 1351. The Government subsequently moved for clarification regarding whether the Court in CPZ 07-08 II required the Department to find that TRBs were substantially transformed in Thailand, or whether the Court permitted the Department to make new findings under each of the substantial transformation criteria. On February 13, 2014, the Court responded to the Government's motion, though the Court did not modify its previous ruling or provide further clarification. See Peer Bearing Company—Changshan v. United States, Court No. 10-00013, Slip Op. 14-15 (CIT 2014).

    14See CPZ 07-08 II, 914 F. Supp. 2d at 1356.

    15See Second Remand Redetermination at 33.

    16Id.

    On December 21, 2015, the CIT issued its decision in CPZ 07-08 III, in which it sustained the Department's Second Remand Redetermination. The Court concluded that though the Department made certain errors in construing the Court's opinion, the Department reached an ultimate determination that is supported by substantial evidence on the record and that accords with a reasonable, rather than expansive, interpretation of the scope of the antidumping duty order.17

    17See CPZ 07-08 III, at 30.

    Timken Notice

    In its decision in Timken, 893 F.2d at 341, as clarified by Diamond Sawblades, the CAFC held that, pursuant to section 516A(e) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (“the Act”), the Department must publish a notice of a court decision that is not “in harmony” with a Department determination and must suspend liquidation of entries pending a “conclusive” court decision. The CIT's December 21, 2015, judgment in this case constitutes a final court decision that is not in harmony with the Department's Final Results. This notice is published in fulfillment of the publication requirements of Timken.

    Amended Final Results

    Because there is now a final court decision with respect to this case, the Department is amending the Final Results with respect to CPZ in this case. The revised weighted-average dumping margin for the June 1, 2007, through May 31, 2008, period of review is as follows:

    Exporter Final
  • percent
  • margin
  • Peer Bearing Company—Changshan 6.24

    The Department will continue the suspension of liquidation of the subject merchandise pending the expiration of the period of appeal or, if appealed, pending a final and conclusive court decision. In the event the Court's ruling is not appealed or, if appealed, upheld by the CAFC, the Department will instruct U.S. Customs and Border Protection to assess antidumping duties on unliquidated entries of subject merchandise exported by the above listed exporters at the rate listed above.

    Cash Deposit Requirements

    In September 2008, Peer Bearing Company—Changshan was acquired by AB SKF, and the Department determined via a successor-in-interest analysis that the post-acquisition entity was not its successor in interest to the pre-acquisition exporter. As a consequence, Peer Bearing Company—Changshan effectively no longer exists, and its cash deposit rate does not need to be updated as a result of these amended final results.

    Notification to Interested Parties

    This notice is issued and published in accordance with sections 516A(e), 751(a)(1), and 777(i)(1) of the Act.

    Dated: January 13, 2016. Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01573 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [Application No. 97-13A03] Export Trade Certificate of Review ACTION:

    Notice of Application for an Amended Export Trade Certificate of Review by Association for the Administration of Rice Quotas, Inc. (“AARQ”), Application No. 97-13A03.

    SUMMARY:

    The Secretary of Commerce, through the International Trade Administration, Office of Trade and Economic Analysis (OTEA), has received an application for an amended Export Trade Certificate of Review (“Certificate”) from AARQ. This notice summarizes the proposed amendment and seeks public comments on whether the amended Certificate should be issued.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Joseph E. Flynn, Director, Office of Trade and Economic Analysis, International Trade Administration, by telephone at (202) 482-5131 (this is not a toll-free number) or email at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title III of the Export Trading Company Act of 1982 (15 U.S.C. Sections 4001-21) authorizes the Secretary of Commerce to issue Export Trade Certificates of Review. An Export Trade Certificate of Review protects the holder and the members identified in the Certificate from State and Federal government antitrust actions and from private treble damage antitrust actions for the export conduct specified in the Certificate and carried out in compliance with its terms and conditions. The regulations implementing Title III are found at 15 CFR part 325 (2016). Section 302(b)(1) of the Export Trading Company Act of 1982 and 15 CFR 325.6(a) require the Secretary to publish a notice in the Federal Register identifying the applicant and summarizing its application. Under 15 CFR 325.6 (a), interested parties may, within twenty days after the date of this notice, submit written comments to the Secretary through OTEA on the application.

    Request For Public Comments: Interested parties may submit written comments relevant to the determination whether an amended Certificate should be issued. If the comments include any privileged or confidential business information, it must be clearly marked and a nonconfidential version of the comments (identified as such) should be included. Any comments not marked as privileged or confidential business information will be deemed to be nonconfidential.

    An original and five (5) copies, plus two (2) copies of the nonconfidential version, should be submitted no later than 20 days after the date of this notice to: Office of Trade and Economic Analysis, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, Room 21028, Washington, DC 20230.

    Information submitted by any person is exempt from disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act (5 U.S.C. 552). However, nonconfidential versions of the comments will be made available to the applicant if necessary for determining whether or not to issue the amended Certificate. Comments should refer to this application as “Export Trade Certificate of Review, application number 97-13A03.”

    Summary of the Application

    Applicant: Association for the Administration of Rice Quotas, Inc.

    Contact: c/o Matthew R. Elkin and Peter G. Mattocks, Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP, 2020 K Street NW., Washington DC 20006.

    Application No.: 97-13A03.

    Date Deemed Submitted: January 11, 2016.

    AARQ seeks to amend its Certificate by making the following changes to the list of Members covered by the Certificate:

    1. Deleting the following Members from its Certificate: a. Family & Sons, Inc., Miami, Florida b. Noble Logistics USA, Inc., Portland Oregon c. Rickmers Rice USA, Inc., Knoxville, Tennessee d. Texana Rice, Inc., Louise, Texas 2. Changing Nishimoto Trading Co., Ltd., Santa Fe Springs, California (a subsidiary of Nishimoto Trading Company, Ltd. (Japan) to Nishimoto Trading Co., Ltd. dba Wismettac Asian Foods, Santa Fe Springs, California (a subsidiary of Nishimoto Trading Company, Ltd. (Japan) 3. Changing PS International, LLC dba PS International Ltd., Chapel Hill, North Carolina (jointly owned by Seaboard Corporation, Kansas City Missouri and PS Trading Inc., Chapel Hill, North Carolina) to Interra International, LLC, Chapel Hill, North Carolina 4. Changing TRC Trading Corporation, Roseville, California (a subsidiary of TRC Group Inc., Roseville, California) and its subsidiary Gulf Rice Arkansas II, LLC, Houston, Texas to TRC Trading Corporation, Roseville, California (a subsidiary of TRC Group Inc., Roseville, California) and its subsidiary Gulf Rice Arkansas II, LLC, Crawfordsville, Arkansas 5. Changing Veetee Rice, Inc., Great Neck, New York (a subsidiary of Veetee Investments Corporation (Bahamas)) to Veetee Foods Inc., Islandia, New York (a subsidiary of Veetee Investments Corporation (Bahamas))

    AARQ's proposed amendment of its Export Trade Certificate of Review would result in the following entities as Members under the Certificate:

    1. ADM Latin, Inc., Decatur, Illinois, ADM Grain Company, Decatur, Illinois, and ADM Rice, Inc., Tarrytown, New York (subsidiaries of Archer Daniels Midland Company) 2. American Commodity Company, LLC, Williams, California 3. Associated Rice Marketing Cooperative (ARMCO), Richvale, California 4. Bunge Milling, Saint Louis, Missouri (a subsidiary of Bunge North America, White Plains, New York), dba PIRMI (Pacific International Rice Mills), Woodland, California 5. Cargill Americas, Inc., and its subsidiary CAI Trading, LLC, Coral Gables, Florida 6. Farmers' Rice Cooperative, Sacramento, California 7. Farmers Rice Milling Company, Inc., Lake Charles, Louisiana 8. Far West Rice, Inc., Durham, California 9. Gulf Pacific Rice Co., Inc., Houston, Texas; Gulf Rice Milling, Inc., Houston, Texas; and Harvest Rice, Inc., McGehee, Arkansas (each a subsidiary of Gulf Pacific, Inc., Houston, Texas) 10. Gulf Pacific Disc, Inc., Houston, Texas 11. Itochu International Inc., Portland, Oregon (a subsidiary of Itochu Corporation (Japan)) 12. JFC International Inc., Los Angeles, California (a subsidiary of Kikkoman Corp.) 13. JIT Products, Inc., Davis, California 14. Kennedy Rice Dryers, L.L.C., Mer Rouge, Louisiana 15. Kitoku America, Inc., Burlingame, California (a subsidiary of Kitoku Shinryo Co., Ltd. (Japan)) 16. LD Commodities Rice Merchandising LLC, Wilton, Connecticut, and LD Commodities Interior Rice Merchandising LLC, Kansas City, Missouri (subsidiaries of Louis Dreyfus Commodities LLC, Wilton, Connecticut) 17. Louisiana Rice Mill, LLC, Mermentau, Louisiana 18. Nidera US LLC, Wilton, Connecticut (a subsidiary of Nidera BV (Netherlands)) 19. Nishimoto Trading Co., Ltd. dba Wismettac Asian Foods, Santa Fe Springs, California (a subsidiary of Nishimoto Trading Company, Ltd. (Japan) 20. Producers Rice Mill, Inc., Stuttgart, Arkansas 21. Interra International, LLC, Chapel Hill, North Carolina 22. Riceland Foods, Inc., Stuttgart, Arkansas 23. Riviana Foods Inc., Houston, Texas (a subsidiary of Ebro Foods, S.A. (Spain)), for the activities of itself and its subsidiary, American Rice, Inc., Houston, Texas 24. Sinamco Trading Inc., Minneapolis, Minnesota 25. SunFoods LLC, Woodland, California 26. SunWest Foods, Inc., Davis, California 27. The Sun Valley Rice Co., LLC, Arbuckle, California 28. TRC Trading Corporation, Roseville, California (a subsidiary of TRC Group Inc., Roseville, California) and its subsidiary Gulf Rice Arkansas II, LLC, Crawfordsville, Arkansas 29. Veetee Foods Inc., Islandia, New York (a subsidiary of Veetee Investments Corporation (Bahamas)) 30. Wehah Farm, Inc., dba Lundberg Family Farms, Richvale, California Dated: January 20, 2016. Joseph Flynn, Director, Office of Trade and Economic Analysis, International Trade Administration.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01570 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DR-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-583-856] Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products From Taiwan: Postponement of Final Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce (“Department”) is postponing the deadline for issuing the final determination in the less-than-fair-value (“LTFV”) investigation of certain corrosion-resistant steel products (“corrosion-resistant steel”) from Taiwan.

    DATES:

    Effective Date: January 26, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Andrew Medley at (202) 482-4987, Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On June 30, 2015, the Department published a notice of initiation of the LTFV investigations of certain corrosion-resistant steel from Italy, India, the People's Republic of China, Korea, and Taiwan.1 The period of investigation is April 1, 2014, through March 31, 2015. On January 4, 2016, the Department published its negative Preliminary Determination in the LTFV investigation of corrosion-resistant steel from Taiwan.2 On December 28, 2015, AK Steel Corporation, with the concurrence of ArcelorMittal USA LLC, Nucor Corporation, Steel Dynamics Inc., California Steel Industries, and United States Steel Corporation (collectively “Petitioners”), requested that the Department postpone its final determination to align with the deadlines of the other investigations of corrosion-resistant steel from the People's Republic of China, India, Italy, and Korea.3

    1See Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products From Italy, India, the People's Republic of China, the Republic of Korea, and Taiwan: Initiation of Less-Than-Fair-Value Investigations, 80 FR 37228 (June 30, 2015).

    2See Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products from Taiwan: Negative Preliminary Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value, 81 FR 72 (January 4, 2016), and accompanying Preliminary Decision Memorandum (“Preliminary Determination”).

    3See the letter from AK Steel Corporation entitled, “Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products From Taiwan: Request For Postponement Of The Final Determination,” dated December 28, 2015.

    Postponement of Final Determination

    Section 735(a)(2)(B) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (“the Act”), and 19 CFR 351.210(b)(2)(i), provide that a final determination may be postponed until not later than 135 days after the date of the publication of the preliminary determination if, in the event of a negative preliminary determination, a request for such postponement is made by the petitioner. In accordance with section 735(a)(2)(B) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.210(b)(2)(i), because (1) our preliminary determination was negative; (2) the request was made by Petitioners; and (3) no compelling reasons for denial exist, we are postponing the final determination until no later than 135 days after the publication of the Preliminary Determination (i.e., to May 18, 2016), in alignment with the deadlines of the other investigations of corrosion-resistant steel from the People's Republic of China, India, Italy, and Korea.4 Accordingly, we will issue our final determination no later than 135 days after the date of publication of the Preliminary Determination.

    4See, e.g., Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products From Italy: Preliminary Affirmative Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value and Postponement of Final Determination, 81 FR 69 (January 4, 2016), and accompanying Preliminary Decision Memorandum.

    This notice is issued and published pursuant to section 735(a)(2)(B) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.210(g).

    Dated: January 13, 2016. Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01566 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-570-601] Tapered Roller Bearings and Parts Thereof, Finished and Unfinished, From the People's Republic of China: Notice of Court Decision Not in Harmony With Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review and Notice of Amended Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative; 2008-2009 AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    On December 21, 2015, the United States Court of International Trade (“CIT” or “Court”) issued its final judgment 1 sustaining the Department of Commerce's (the “Department”) final results of redetermination 2 issued pursuant to the CIT's remand order in Peer Bearing Co.-Changshan v. United States, 986 F. Supp. 2d 1389 (CIT 2014) (“CPZ 08-09 II”), with respect to the Department's final results 3 of the twenty-second administrative review of the antidumping duty order on tapered roller bearings and parts thereof, finished and unfinished (“TRBs”), from People's Republic of China (“PRC”). Consistent with the decision of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (“CAFC”) in Timken Co. v. United States, 893 F.2d 337 (Fed. Cir. 1990) (“Timken”), as clarified by Diamond Sawblades Mfrs. Coalition v. United States, 626 F.3d 1374 (Fed. Cir. 2010) (“Diamond Sawblades”), the Department is notifying the public that the final judgment in this case is not in harmony with the Department's Final Results and is amending the Final Results with respect to the dumping margins determined for Peer Bearing Company- Changshan and Changshan Peer Bearing Co., Ltd.4

    1See, Peer Bearing Company—Changshan v. United States, Consol. Court No. 11-00022, Slip Op. 15-143 (CIT 2015) (“CPZ 08-09 III”), and accompanying judgment order.

    2See Final Results of Redetermination Pursuant to Court Remand, Peer Bearing Company—Changshan v. United States, Consol. Court No. 11-00022, Slip Op. 14-62 (CIT 2014) (“Second Remand Redetermination”).

    3See Tapered Roller Bearings and Parts Thereof, Finished and Unfinished, From the People's Republic of China: Final Results of the 2008-2009 Antidumping Duty Administrative Review, 76 FR 3086 (January 19, 2011) (“Final Results”) and accompanying Issues and Decision Memorandum (“IDM”).

    4 Prior to September 11, 2008, Peer Bearing Company-Changshan was majority-owned by the Spungen family (“PBCD/CPZ”). On September 11, 2008, two and a half months into the period of review (“POR”), PBCD/CPZ, the sole respondent in the prior 2007-2008 POR, and its Illinois-based U.S. sales affiliate, Peer Bearing Company (“PBCD/Peer”) (collectively, “PBCD”), were each purchased by certain companies owned by SKF. In the underlying review, we found that the post-acquisition respondent was not the successor-in-interest to the pre-acquisition respondent and, thus, were each legally distinct entities for the purposes of this antidumping duty (“AD”) review. The post-acquisition respondent is referred to as the SKF-owned Changshan Peer Bearing Company, Ltd. (“SKF/CPZ”) and its Illinois-based affiliate is referred to as Peer Bearing Company (“SKF/Peer”) (collectively “SKF”). For ease of reference, the two respondents are referred to by their collective names “PBCD” and “SKF” throughout this document. For the purpose of generally referencing the physical facilities in question during the POR in its entirety, without consideration of ownership, the Changshan-based TRB production facility is referred to as “CPZ” and the Illinois-based U.S. sales affiliate is referred to as “Peer.”

    DATES:

    Effective Date: December 31, 2015.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Keith A. Haynes, Office III, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-5139.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On December 21, 2012, the Court issued its initial opinion and remanded the Final Results, ordering that the Department: (1) redetermine the surrogate value (“SV”) applied to PBCD/CPZ's input of bearing-quality steel bar; (2) reconsider its determination to calculate the normal value (“NV”) of subject merchandise that was imported by PBCD/Peer prior to its acquisition by SKF, but sold by SKF/Peer subsequent to the acquisition, using SKF/CPZ's factors of production (“FOPs”); and (3) reconsider, and modify as appropriate, its determination of the country of origin of TRBs that were finished, and assembled in Thailand from TRB component parts both finished (i.e., cups and cones) and unfinished (i.e., rollers and cages) initially produced in and subsequently exported from the PRC.5

    5See Peer Bearing Company-Changshan v. United States, 884 F. Supp. 2d 1313 (CIT 2012) (“CPZ 08-09 I”).

    In the First Remand Redetermination,6 pursuant to CPZ 08-09 I, the Department: (1) determined that Thai import data under Harmonized Tariff Schedule subheading 7228.30.90 are the best available information on the record with which to value PBCD/CPZ's bearing-quality steel bar inputs, and adjusted the margin program accordingly; and (2) re-calculated the weighted-average dumping margin for SKF so that PBCD/CPZ's FOPs (not SKF/CPZ's FOPs) were used to determine the NV of SKF/Peer's post-acquisition sales of pre-acquisition inventory.7 With respect to the Court's directive to reconsider the country of origin finding from the Final Results and modify its determination, as necessary, the Department reconsidered its determination in its entirety, applying its established criteria for determining whether merchandise is substantially transformed in another country. The Department expanded upon and further supported the existing findings as to the physical/chemical properties/essential character,8 nature/sophistication of processing,9 level of investment,10 and cost of production (“COP”)/value-added,11 finding that these factors continued to support an overall finding that the third-country processing was not substantial so as to confer Thai origin. Consistent with the Court's remand order, the Department also discussed and further explained the relevance of the class-kind/scope 12 and ultimate use 13 criteria used in the underlying analysis. The Department did not “reach a determination as to whether circumvention has occurred or may occur and, thus, {found} that this element {did} not preclude or support a finding of substantial transformation.” 14 Based on the totality of circumstances, the Department determined in the First Remand Redetermination that:

    6See Final Results of Redetermination Pursuant to Remand, Consol. Court No. 11-00022, Slip Op. 12-125 (CIT 2012), dated May 13, 2013 (“First Remand Redetermination”).

    7See First Remand Redetermination at 36-40.

    8Id., at 16-20.

    9Id., at 13-15.

    10Id., at 26-32.

    11Id., at 20-26.

    12Id., at 10-13.

    13Id., at 34-35.

    14Id., at 34.

    {T}he Thai processing does not substantially transform the TRB parts and that the TRBs remain of PRC-origin. The nature and sophistication of processing indicate that the finishing processes in Thailand serve only to further refine the cup and cone's finished measurements, polish the raceway, and assemble the components together. The physical/chemical properties and essential component are imparted in the PRC, with the properties added in Thailand marginal in comparison. The COP/value added in Thailand is insignificant when compared to the COP of the finished TRB. The level of investment in Thailand was not as significant as the investment in the PRC. The ultimate use of TRB parts and final, finished TRBs is the same. These factors weigh in favor of a finding that the TRBs which are finished in Thailand are of PRC-origin. The class or kind/scope criterion is not determinative to our finding, although the fact that the upstream product is within the same class or kind and scope as the downstream product is relevant to our country-of-origin determination.15

    15Id., at 35-36.

    On June 10, 2014, the CIT issued CPZ 08-09 II, in which it sustained the Department's re-determined SV for bearing-quality steel bar. However, the Court remanded, for a second time, the Department's country of origin determination.16 Specifically, the Court found that “the method and criteria applied in the Remand Redetermination caused Commerce to ignore critical record evidence” and that “the record lacked substantial evidence to support the ultimate finding Commerce reached in the {First} Remand Redetermination.”17 The Court further noted that the product at issue (i.e., merchandise completed or assembled in a third country, Thailand) was “of a type Congress contemplated would be the subject of an anti-circumvention inquiry, without actually conducting such an inquiry.”18 In so doing, the Court found that the Department “exceeded its authority to interpret, without expanding, the scope language” of the TRBs order.19 Finally, though the Court held that the Department provided adequate reasoning for using PBCD/CPZ's FOP data to calculate the NV for pre-acquisition PBCD/CPZ-produced merchandise subsequently sold by SKF/Peer during the post-acquisition portion of the POR in the First Remand Redetermination, the Court remanded for further explanation the Department's use of PBCD/CPZ's FOP data from the twenty-second POR, rather than PBCD/CPZ's FOP data from the prior POR.20

    16See CPZ 08-09 II, 986 F. Supp. 2d at 1414.

    17Id., at 1406.

    18Id., at 1402-03.

    19Id., at 1406.

    20Id.

    In compliance with the Court's instructions, the Department under protest re-determined the country of origin for certain merchandise under review, and revised the dumping margin calculations to exclude U.S. sales of TRBs further processed in Thailand, finding those TRBs to be Thai-origin.21 In particular, the Department explained that it “did not conduct a circumvention analysis pursuant to section 781(b) of the {Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (“the Act”)}” and thus could not “find that the TRBs in question are of Chinse origin.”22 With respect to the remaining issue on remand, the Department explained that it is consistent with section 773(c)(4) of the Act, to use production data from the POR in which the merchandise is sold, because this best reflects the producer's production experience from the period in which the Department is determining the margin of dumping; therefore, the Department did not find that PBCD/CPZ's FOP data from the prior POR is a more accurate reflection of PBCD's production of merchandise sold by SKF during the POR.23 Therefore, to determine the margin for SKF/Peer's sales of merchandise produced by PBCD/CPZ, the Department continued to use PBCD/CPZ's POR-contemporaneous FOPs to calculate NV. Along with the SV changes sustained in CPZ 08-09 II, the Department calculated weighted-average dumping margins for PBCD of 21.65 percent and SKF of 19.45 percent.24

    21See Second Remand Redetermination at 8.

    22Id.

    23Id, at 12-13.

    24Id., at 17.

    On December 21, 2015, the CIT issued its decision in CPZ 08-09 III, in which it sustained the Department's Second Remand Redetermination. Specifically, the Court sustained the Department's decision regarding selection of the FOP data used to value post-acquisition sales of pre-acquisition inventory.25 Furthermore, with respect to the country of origin finding, the Court concluded that the Department reached an ultimate determination that is supported by substantial evidence on the record that accords with a reasonable, rather than expansive, interpretation of the scope of the antidumping duty order. The Court found that the Department's analysis presented in the Second Remand Redetermination, although suffering from some flaws in the interpretation of the Court's holding in CPZ 08-09 II, was sufficient to allow the Court to sustain the Department's ultimate determination.26

    25See CPZ 08-09 III, at 7.

    26Id., at 15-19.

    Timken Notice

    In its decision in Timken, 893 F.2d at 341, as clarified by Diamond Sawblades, the CAFC held that, pursuant to section 516A(e) of the Act, the Department must publish a notice of a court decision that is not “in harmony” with a Department determination and must suspend liquidation of entries pending a “conclusive” court decision. The CIT's December 21, 2015, judgment in this case constitutes a final court decision that is not in harmony with the Department's Final Results. This notice is published in fulfillment of the publication requirements of Timken.

    Amended Final Results

    As a result, of the Court's final decision with respect to this case, the Department is amending the Final Results with respect to PBCD/SKF and SKF/CPZ in this case. The revised weighted-average dumping margins for the June 1, 2008, through May 31, 2009, period of review are as follows:

    Exporter Final percent margin Peer Bearing Company—Changshan (Spungen-owned, PBCD) 21.65 Changshan Peer Bearing Company, Ltd. (SKF-owned, SKF) 19.45

    The Department will continue the suspension of liquidation of the subject merchandise pending the expiration of the period of appeal or, if appealed, pending a final and conclusive court decision. In the event the Court's ruling is not appealed or, if appealed, upheld by the CAFC, the Department will instruct U.S. Customs and Border Protection to assess antidumping duties on unliquidated entries of subject merchandise exported by the above listed exporters at the rate listed above.

    Cash Deposit Requirements

    Since the Final Results, the Department has established a new cash deposit rate for SKF/CPZ.27 Therefore, the cash deposit rate for SKF does not need to be updated as a result of these amended final results.

    27See Tapered Roller Bearings and Parts Thereof, Finished and Unfinished, From the People's Republic of China: Final Results of the Antidumping Duty Administrative Review and Final Results of the New Shipper Review; 2012-2013, 80 FR 4244 (January 27, 2015).

    Since the Final Results, the Department has not established a new cash deposit rate for PBCD/CPZ. However, as explained above, in September 2008, PBCD/CPZ was acquired by AB SKF, and the Department determined via a successor-in-interest analysis that SKF/CPZ was not its successor in interest. As a consequence, PBCD/CPZ effectively no longer exists, and its cash deposit rate does not need to be updated as a result of these amended final results.

    Notification to Interested Parties

    This notice is issued and published in accordance with sections 516A(e), 751(a)(1), and 777(i)(1) of the Act.

    Dated: January 13, 2016. Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01509 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Institute of Standards and Technology [Docket Number: 150302201-6024-02] Award Competitions for Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) Centers in the States of Alabama, Arkansas, California, Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Utah and Vermont AGENCY:

    National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), United States Department of Commerce (DoC).

    ACTION:

    Notice of funding availability.

    SUMMARY:

    NIST invites applications from eligible organizations in connection with NIST's funding up to thirteen (13) separate MEP cooperative agreements for the operation of an MEP Center in the designated States' service areas and in the funding amounts identified in the corresponding Federal Funding Opportunity (FFO). NIST anticipates awarding one (1) cooperative agreement for each of the identified States. The objective of the MEP Center Program is to provide manufacturing extension services to primarily small and medium-sized manufacturers within the States designated in the corresponding FFO. The selected organization will become part of the MEP national system of extension service providers, currently located throughout the United States and Puerto Rico.

    DATES:

    Electronic applications must be received no later than 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on April 25, 2016. Paper applications will not be accepted. Applications received after the deadline will not be reviewed or considered. The approximate start date for awards under this notice and the corresponding FFO is expected to be October 1, 2016.

    When developing your submission timeline, please keep in mind that (1) all applicants are required to have a current registration in the System for Award Management (SAM.gov); (2) the free annual registration process in the electronic System for Award Management (SAM.gov) may take between three and five business days, or as long as more than two weeks; and (3) electronic applicants are required to have a current registration in Grants.gov; and (4) applicants will receive a series of email messages from Grants.gov over a period of up to two business days before learning whether a Federal agency's electronic system has received its application. Please note that a federal assistance award cannot be issued if the designated recipient's registration in the System for Award Management (SAM.gov) is not current at the time of the award.

    ADDRESSES:

    Applications must be submitted electronically through www.grants.gov. NIST will not accept applications submitted by mail, facsimile, or by email.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Administrative, budget, cost-sharing, and eligibility questions and other programmatic questions should be directed to Diane Henderson at Tel: (301) 975-5105; Email: [email protected]; Fax: (301) 963-6556. Grants Rules and Regulation questions should be addressed to: Michael Teske, Grants Management Division, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 1650, Gaithersburg, MD 20899-1650; Tel: (301) 975-6358; Email: [email protected]; Fax: (301) 975-6368. For technical assistance with Grants.gov submissions contact Christopher Hunton at Tel: (301) 975-5718; Email: [email protected]; Fax: (301) 975-8884. Questions submitted to NIST/MEP may be posted as part of an FAQ document, which will be periodically updated on the MEP Web site at http://nist.gov/mep/ffo-state-competitions-03.cfm.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Electronic access: Applicants are strongly encouraged to read the corresponding FFO announcement available at www.grants.gov for complete information about this program, including all program requirements and instructions for applying electronically. Paper applications or electronic applications submitted other than through www.grants.gov will not be accepted. The FFO may be found by searching under the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Name and Number provided below.

    Authority:

    15 U.S.C. 278k, as implemented in 15 CFR part 290.

    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Name and Number: Manufacturing Extension Partnership—11.611.

    Webinar Information Session: NIST/MEP will hold one or more webinar information sessions for organizations that are considering applying for this funding opportunity. These webinars will provide general information regarding MEP and offer general guidance on preparing proposals. NIST/MEP staff will be available at the webinars to answer general questions. During the webinars, proprietary technical discussions about specific project ideas will not be permitted. Also, NIST/MEP staff will not critique or provide feedback on any specific project ideas during the webinars or at any time before submission of a proposal to MEP. However, NIST/MEP staff will provide information about the MEP eligibility and cost-sharing requirements, evaluation criteria and selection factors, selection process, and the general characteristics of a competitive MEP proposal during this webinar. The webinars will be held approximately fifteen (15) to thirty (30) business days after posting of this notice and the corresponding FFO. The exact dates and times of the webinars will be posted on the MEP Web site at http://nist.gov/mep/ffo-state-competitions-03.cfm. The webinars will be recorded, and a link to the recordings will be posted on the MEP Web site. In addition, the webinar presentations will be available on the MEP Web site. Organizations wishing to participate in one or more of the webinars must register in advance by contacting MEP by email at [email protected] Participation in the webinars is not required in order for an organization to submit an application pursuant to this notice and the corresponding FFO.

    Program Description: NIST invites applications from eligible organizations in connection with NIST's funding up to thirteen (13) separate MEP cooperative agreements for the operation of an MEP Center in the designated States' service areas and in the funding amounts identified in section II.2 of the corresponding FFO. NIST anticipates awarding one (1) cooperative agreement for each of the identified States. The objective of the MEP Center Program is to provide manufacturing extension services to primarily small and medium-sized manufacturers within the States designated in the applications. The selected organization will become part of the MEP national system of extension service providers, located throughout the United States and Puerto Rico.

    See the corresponding FFO for further information about the Manufacturing Extension Partnership and the MEP National Network.

    The MEP Program is not a Federal research and development program. It is not the intent of the program that awardees will perform systematic research.

    To learn more about the MEP Program, please go to http://www.nist.gov/mep/.

    Funding Availability: NIST anticipates funding up to thirteen (13) MEP Center awards with an initial five-year period of performance in accordance with the multi-year funding policy described in section II.3 of the corresponding FFO. Initial funding for the awards listed below and in the corresponding FFO is contingent upon the availability of appropriated funds.

    The table below lists the thirteen (13) States identified for funding as part of this notice and the corresponding FFO and the estimated amount of funding available for each:

    1 The States of Ohio and Utah were included in a prior round of MEP Center award competitions (see 80 FR 12451 (March 9, 2015) and NIST Funding Opportunity Number 2015-NIST-MEP-01), which did not result in an application being selected for funding. As a result, NIST is announcing competition for these two States as part of this round of MEP Center award competitions.

    MEP Center location and assigned geographical service area (by state) 1 Anticipated
  • annual Federal funding for each year of the award
  • Total Federal funding for 5 year award period
    Alabama $1,780,800 $8,904,000 Arkansas 971,218 4,856,065 California 14,046,449 70,232,245 Georgia 2,693,482 13,467,410 Louisiana 1,197,546 5,987,730 Massachusetts 2,467,879 12,339,395 Missouri 2,207,873 11,039,365 Montana 512,000 2,560,000 Ohio 5,246,822 26,234,110 Pennsylvania 5,280,586 26,402,930 Puerto Rico 643,133 3,215,665 Utah 1,147,573 5,737,865 Vermont 500,000 2,500,000

    Applicants may propose annual Federal funding amounts that are different from the anticipated annual Federal funding amounts set forth in the above table, provided that the total amount of Federal funding being requested by an Applicant does not exceed the total amount of federal funding for the five-year award period as set forth in the above table. For example, if the anticipated annual Federal funding amount for an MEP Center is $500,000 and the total Federal funding amount for the five-year award period is $2,500,000, an Applicant may propose Federal funding amounts greater, less than, or equal to $500,000 for any year or years of the award, so long as the total amount of Federal funding being requested by the Applicant for the entire five-year award period does not exceed $2,500,000.

    Multi-Year Funding Policy. When an application for a multi-year award is approved, funding will usually be provided for only the first year of the project. Recipients will be required to submit detailed budgets and budget narratives prior to the award of any continued funding. Continued funding for the remaining years of the project will be awarded by NIST on a non-competitive basis, and may be adjusted higher or lower from year-to-year of the award, contingent upon satisfactory performance, continued relevance to the mission and priorities of the program, and the availability of funds. Continuation of an award to extend the period of performance and/or to increase or decrease funding is at the sole discretion of NIST.

    Potential for Additional 5 Years. Initial awards issued pursuant to this notice and the corresponding FFO are expected to be for up to five (5) years with the possibility for NIST to renew the award, on a non-competitive basis, for an additional 5 years at the end of the initial award period. The review processes in 15 CFR 290.8 will be used as part of the overall assessment of the recipient, consistent with the potential long-term nature and purpose of the program. In considering renewal for a second five-year, multi-year award term, NIST will evaluate the results of the annual reviews and the results of the 3rd Year peer-based Panel Review findings and recommendations as set forth in 15 CFR 290.8, as well as the Center's progress in addressing findings and recommendations made during the various reviews. The full process is expected to include programmatic, policy, financial, administrative, and responsibility assessments, and the availability of funds, consistent with Department of Commerce and NIST policies and procedures in effect at that time.

    Kick-Off Conferences

    Each recipient will be required to attend a kick-off conference, which will be held within 30 days post start date of award, to help ensure that the MEP Center operator has a clear understanding of the program and its components. The kick-off conference will take place at NIST/MEP headquarters in Gaithersburg, MD, during which time NIST will: (1) Orient MEP Center key personnel to the MEP program; (2) explain program and financial reporting requirements and procedures; (3) identify available resources that can enhance the capabilities of the MEP Center; and (4) negotiate and develop a detailed three-year operating plan with the recipient. NIST/MEP anticipates an additional set of site visits at the MEP Center and/or telephonic meetings with the recipient to finalize the three-year operating plan.

    The kick-off conference will take up to approximately 3 days and must be attended by the MEP Center Director, along with up to two additional MEP Center employees. Applicants must include travel and related costs for the kick-off conference as part of the budget for year one (1), and these costs should be reflected in the SF-424A form. (See section IV.2.a(2) of the corresponding FFO). These costs must also be reflected in the budget table and budget narrative for year 1, which is submitted as part of the budget tables and budget narratives section of the Technical Proposal. (See section IV.2.a(6)(e) of the corresponding FFO.) Representatives from key subrecipients and other key strategic partners may attend the kick-off conference with the prior written approval of the Grants Officer. Applicants proposing to have key subrecipients and/or other key strategic partners attend the kick-off conference should clearly indicate so as part of the budget narrative for year one of the project.

    MEP System-Wide Meetings

    NIST/MEP typically organizes system-wide meetings approximately four times a year in an effort to share best practices, new and emerging trends, and additional topics of interest. These meetings are rotated throughout the United States and typically involve 3-4 days of resource time and associated travel costs for each meeting. The MEP Center Director must attend these meetings, along with up to two additional MEP Center employees.

    Applicants must include travel and related costs for four quarterly MEP system-wide meetings in each of the five (5) project years (4 meetings per year; 20 total meetings over five-year award period). These costs must be reflected in the SF-424A form (see section IV.2.a(2).of the corresponding FFO). These costs must also be reflected in the budget tables and budget narratives for each of the project's five (5) years, which are submitted in the budget tables and budget narratives section of the Technical Proposal. (See section IV.2.a(6)(e) of the corresponding FFO).

    Cost Share or Matching Requirement: Non-Federal cost sharing of at least 50 percent of the total project costs is required for each of the first through the third year of the award, with an increasing minimum non-federal cost share contribution beginning in year 4 of the award as follows:

    Award year Maximum NIST share Minimum non-Federal share 1-3 1/2 1/2 4 2/5 3/5 5 and beyond 1/3 2/3

    Non-Federal cost sharing is that portion of the project costs not borne by the Federal Government. The applicant's share of the MEP Center expenses may include cash, services, and third party in-kind contributions, as described at 2 CFR 200.306, as applicable, and in the MEP program regulations at 15 CFR 290.4(c). No more than 50% of the applicant's total non-Federal cost share for any year of the award may be from third party in-kind contributions of part-time personnel, equipment, software, rental value of centrally located space, and related contributions, per 15 CFR 290.4(c)(5). The source and detailed rationale of the cost share, including cash, full- and part-time personnel, and in-kind donations, must be documented in the budget tables and budget narratives submitted with the application and will be considered as part of the review under the evaluation criterion found in section V.1.c.ii of the corresponding FFO.

    Recipients must meet the minimum non-federal cost share requirements for each year of the award as identified in the chart above. For purposes of the MEP Program, “program income” (as defined in 2 CFR 200.80, as applicable) generated by an MEP Center may be used by a recipient towards the required non-federal cost share under an MEP award.

    As with the Federal share, any proposed costs included as non-Federal cost sharing must be an allowable/eligible cost under this program and under the Federal cost principles set forth in 2 CFR part 200, subpart E. Non-Federal cost sharing incorporated into the budget of an approved MEP cooperative agreement is subject to audit in the same general manner as Federal award funds. See 2 CFR part 200, subpart F.

    As set forth in section IV.2.a(7) of the corresponding FFO, a letter of commitment is required from an authorized representative of the applicant, stating the total amount of cost share to be contributed by the applicant towards the proposed MEP Center. Letters of commitment for all other third-party sources of non-Federal cost sharing identified in a proposal are not required, but are strongly encouraged.

    Eligibility: The eligibility requirements set forth here and in section III.1 of the corresponding FFO will be used in lieu of and to the extent they are inconsistent with will supersede those given in the MEP regulations found at 15 CFR part 290, specifically 15 CFR 290.5(a)(1). Each applicant for and recipient of an MEP award must be a U.S.-based nonprofit institution or organization. For the purpose of this notice and the corresponding FFO, nonprofit institutions include public and private nonprofit organizations, nonprofit or State colleges and universities, public or nonprofit community and technical colleges, and State, local or Tribal governments. Existing MEP awardees and new applicants that meet the eligibility criteria set forth here and in section III.1 of the corresponding FFO may apply. An eligible organization may work individually or may include proposed subawards to eligible organizations or proposed contracts with any other organization as part of the applicant's proposal, effectively forming a team. However, as discussed in section I.4 of the corresponding FFO, NIST generally will not fund applications that propose an organizational or operational structure that, in whole or in part, delegates or transfers to another person, institution, or organization the applicant's responsibility for MEP Core Management and Oversight functions. In addition, the applicant must have or propose an Oversight Board or Advisory Committee and Governance structure or plan for establishing a board structure within 90 days from the award start date (Refer to section I.3 of the corresponding FFO).

    Application Requirements: Applications must be submitted in accordance with the requirements set forth in section IV of the corresponding FFO announcement, which are in lieu of and to the extent they are inconsistent with will supersede any application requirements set forth in 15 CFR 290.5. See specifically sections IV.2.b(1), IV.2.b(2), and IV.2.b(7) in the Full Announcement Text of the corresponding FFO.

    Application/Review Information: The evaluation criteria, selection factors, and review and selection process provided in this section and in section V of the corresponding FFO will be used for this competition in lieu of and to the extent they are inconsistent with will supersede those provided in the MEP regulations found at 15 CFR part 290, specifically 15 CFR 290.6 and 290.7.

    Evaluation Criteria: The evaluation criteria that will be used in evaluating applications and assigned weights, with a maximum score of 100, are listed below.

    a. Executive Summary and Project Narrative. (40 points; Sub-criteria i through iv will be weighted equally) NIST/MEP will evaluate the extent to which the applicant's Executive Summary and Project Narrative demonstrates how the applicant's methodology will efficiently and effectively establish an MEP Center and provide manufacturing extension services to primarily small and medium-sized manufacturers in the applicable State-wide geographical service area identified in section II.2 of the corresponding FFO. Applicants should name the state to be covered in the first sentence of the Executive Summary and Project Narrative. Reviewers will consider the following topics when evaluating the Executive Summary and Project Narrative:

    i. Center Strategy. Reviewers will assess the applicant's strategy proposed for the Center to deliver services that meet manufacturers' needs, generate client impacts (e.g., cost savings, increased sales, etc.), and support a strong manufacturing ecosystem. Reviewers will assess the quality with which the applicant:

    • Incorporates the market analysis described in the criterion set forth in subsection ii, below and in section V.1.a.ii(1) of the corresponding FFO to inform strategies, products and services;

    • defines a strategy for delivering services that balances market penetration with impact and revenue generation, addressing the needs of manufacturers, with an emphasis on the small and medium-sized manufacturers;

    • defines the Center's existing and/or proposed roles and relationships with other entities in the State's manufacturing ecosystem, including State, regional, and local agencies, economic development organizations and educational institutions such as universities and community or technical colleges, industry associations, and other appropriate entities;

    • plans to engage with other entities in Statewide and/or regional advanced manufacturing initiatives; and

    • supports achievements of the MEP mission and objectives while also satisfying the interests of other stakeholders, investors, and partners.

    ii. Market Understanding. Reviewers will assess the strategy proposed for the Center to define the target market, understand the needs of manufacturers (especially Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)), and to define appropriate services to meet identified needs. Reviewers will evaluate the proposed approach for regularly updating this understanding through the five years. The following sub-topics will be evaluated and given equal weight:

    (1) Market Segmentation. Reviewers will assess the quality and extent of the applicant's market segmentation strategy including:

    • Segmentation of company size, geography, and industry priorities including some consideration of rural, start-up (a manufacturing establishment that has been in operation for five years or less) and/or very small manufacturers as appropriate to the state;

    • alignment with state and/or regional initiatives; and

    • other important factors identified by the applicant.

    (2) Needs Identification and Product/Service Offerings. Reviewers will assess the quality and extent of the applicant's proposed needs identification and proposed products and services for both sales growth and operational improvement in response to the applicant's market segmentation and understanding assessed by reviewers under the preceding subsection ii(1) and in section V.1.a.ii.1 of the corresponding FFO. Of particular interest is how the applicant would leverage new manufacturing technologies, techniques and processes usable by small and medium-sized manufacturers. Reviewers will also consider how an applicant's proposed approach will support a job-driven training agenda with manufacturing clients. (To learn more about the White House job-driven training agenda, please go to: https://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/docs/ready_to_work_factsheet.pdf).

    iii. Business Model. Reviewers will assess the applicant's proposed business model for the Center as the applicant provides in its Project Narrative, Qualifications of the Applicant; Key Personnel, Organizational Structure and Budget Tables and Budget Narratives sections of its Technical Proposal, submitted under section IV.2.a(6) of the corresponding FFO, and the proposed business model's ability to execute the strategy evaluated under criterion set forth in subsection ii(1), above, and in section V.1.a.i of the corresponding FFO, based on the market understanding evaluated under criterion set forth in subsection ii(2), above, and in section V.1.a.ii of the corresponding FFO. The following sub-topics will be evaluated and given equal weight:

    (1) Outreach and Service Delivery to the Market. Reviewers will assess the extent to which the proposed Center is organized to:

    • Identify, reach and provide proposed services to key market segments and individual manufacturers described above;

    • work with a manufacturer's leadership in strategic discussions related to new technologies, new products and new markets; and

    • leverage the applicant's past experience in working with small and medium-sized manufacturers as a basis for future programmatic success.

    (2) Partnership Leverage and Linkages. Reviewers will assess the extent to which the proposed Center will make effective use of resources or partnerships with third parties such as industry, universities, community/technical colleges, nonprofit economic development organizations, and Federal, State and Local Government Agencies in the Center's business model.

    iv. Performance Measurement and Management. Reviewers will assess the extent to which the applicant will use a systematic approach to measuring and managing performance including the:

    • Quality and extent of the applicant's stated goals, milestones and outcomes described by operating year (year 1, year 2, etc.);

    • applicant's utilization of client-based business results important to stakeholders in understanding program impact; and

    • depth of the proposed methodology for program management and internal evaluation likely to ensure effective operations and oversight for meeting program and service delivery objectives.

    b. Qualifications of the Applicant; Key Personnel, Organizational Structure and Management; and Oversight Board or Advisory Committee and Governance (30 points; Sub-criteria i and ii will be weighted equally). Reviewers will assess the ability of the key personnel, the applicant's organizational structure and management and Oversight Board or Advisory Committee and Governance to deliver the program and services envisioned for the Center. Reviewers will consider the following topics when evaluating the qualifications of the applicant and of program management:

    i. Key Personnel, Organizational Structure and Management. Reviewers will assess the extent to which the:

    • Proposed key personnel have the appropriate experience and education in manufacturing, outreach, program management and partnership development to support achievements of the MEP mission and objectives;

    • proposed management structure and organizational roles are aligned to plan, direct, monitor, organize and control the monetary resources of the proposed center to achieve its business objectives (Refer to section I.4 of the corresponding FFO);

    • proposed organizational structure flows logically from the specified approach to the market and products and service offerings; and

    • proposed field staff structure sufficiently supports the geographic concentrations and industry targets for the region.

    ii. Oversight Board or Advisory Committee and Governance. Reviewers will assess the extent to which the:

    • Proposed Oversight Board or Advisory Committee and its operations are complete, appropriate and will meet the program's objectives at the time of award, or, if such a Board or Committee does not exist at the time of application or is not expected to meet these requirements at the time of award, the extent to which the proposed plan for developing and implementing such an Oversight Board or Advisory Committee within 90 days of award start date (expected to be October 1, 2016) is feasible. (Refer to section I.3 of the corresponding FFO).

    • Oversight Board or Advisory Committee and Governance is engaged with overseeing and guiding the Center and supports its own development through a schedule of regular meetings, and processes ensuring Board or Advisory Committee involvement in strategic planning, recruitment, selection and retention of board members, board assessment practices and board development initiatives (Refer to section I.3. of the corresponding FFO).

    c. Budget and Financial Plan. (30 points; Sub-criteria i and ii will be weighted equally) Reviewers will assess the suitability and focus of the applicant's five (5) year budget. The application will be assessed in the following areas:

    i. Budget. Reviewers will assess the extent to which:

    • The proposed financial plan is aligned to support the execution of the proposed Center's strategy and business model over the five (5) year project plan;

    • the proposed projections for income and expenditures are appropriate for the scale of services that are to be delivered by the proposed Center and the service delivery model envisioned within the context of the overall financial model over the five (5) year project plan;

    • a reasonable ramp-up or scale-up scope and budget has the Center fully operational by the 4th year of the project; and

    • the proposal's narrative for each of the budgeted items explains the rationale for each of the budgeted items, including assumptions the applicant used in budgeting for the Center.

    ii. Quality of the Financial Plan for Meeting the Award's Non-Federal Cost Share Requirements over 5 Years. Reviewers will assess the quality of and extent to which the:

    • Applicant clearly describes the total level of cost share and detailed rationale of the cost share, including cash and in-kind, in their proposed budget.

    • applicant's funding commitments for cost share are documented by letters of support from the applicant, proposed sub-recipients and any other partners identified and meet the basic matching requirements of the program;

    • applicant's cost share meets basic requirements of allowability, allocability and reasonableness under applicable federal costs principles set for in 2 CFR part 200, subpart E;

    • applicant's underlying accounting system is established or will be established to meet applicable federal costs principles set for in 2 CFR part 200, subpart E; and

    • the overall proposed financial plan is sufficiently robust and diversified so as to support the long term sustainability of the Center throughout the five (5) years of the project plan.

    Selection Factors: The Selection Factors for this notice as set forth here and in section V.3 of the corresponding FFO are as follows:

    a. The availability of Federal funds;

    b. Relevance of the proposed project to MEP program goals and policy objectives;

    c. Reviewers' evaluations, including technical comments;

    d. The need to assure appropriate distribution of MEP services within the designated State;

    e. Whether the project duplicates other projects funded by DoC or by other Federal agencies; and

    f. Whether the application complements or supports other Administration priorities, or projects supported by DoC or other Federal agencies, such as but not limited to the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation and the Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership.

    Review and Selection Process: Proposals, reports, documents and other information related to applications submitted to NIST and/or relating to financial assistance awards issued by NIST will be reviewed and considered by Federal employees, Federal agents and contractors, and/or by non-Federal personnel who enter into nondisclosure agreements covering such information as set forth here and in section V.2 of the corresponding FFO, which will be used for this competition in lieu of and to the extent they are inconsistent with will supersede the review and selection process provided in the MEP regulations found at 15 CFR part 290, specifically 15 CFR 290.7.

    (1) Initial Administrative Review of Applications. An initial review of timely received applications will be conducted to determine eligibility, completeness, and responsiveness to this notice and the corresponding FFO and the scope of the stated program objectives. Applications determined to be ineligible, incomplete, and/or non-responsive may be eliminated from further review. However, NIST, in its sole discretion, may continue the review process for an application that is missing non-substantive information that can easily be rectified or cured.

    (2) Full Review of Eligible, Complete, and Responsive Applications. Applications that are determined to be eligible, complete, and responsive will proceed for full reviews in accordance with the review and selection processes below. Eligible, complete and responsive applications will be grouped by the State in which the proposed MEP Center is to be established. The applications in each group will be reviewed by the same reviewers and will be evaluated, reviewed, and selected as described below in separate groups.

    (3) Evaluation and Review. Each application will be reviewed by at least three technically qualified individual reviewers who will evaluate each application based on the evaluation criteria (see section V.1 of the corresponding FFO). Applicants may receive written follow-up questions in order for the reviewers to gain a better understanding of the applicant's proposal. Each reviewer will provide a written technical assessment against the evaluation criteria and based on that assessment will assign each application a numeric score, with a maximum score of 100. If a non-Federal reviewer is used, the reviewers may discuss the applications with each other, but scores will be determined on an individual basis, not as a consensus.

    Applicants whose applications receive an average score of 70 or higher out of 100 will be deemed finalists. If deemed necessary, finalists will be invited to participate with reviewers in a conference call and/or a video conference, and/or finalists will be invited to participate in a site visit that will be conducted by the same reviewers at the applicant's location. In any event, if there are two (2) or more finalists within a state, conference calls, video conferences or site visits will be conducted with each finalist. Finalists will be reviewed and evaluated, and reviewers may revise their assigned numeric scores based on the evaluation criteria (see section V.1 of the corresponding FFO) as a result of the conference call, video conference, and/or site visit.

    (4) Ranking and Selection. Based upon an average of the technical reviewers' final scores, an adjectival rating will be assigned to each application in accordance with the following scale:

    Fundable, Outstanding (91-100 points);

    Fundable, Very Good (81-90 points);

    Fundable (70-80 points); or

    Unfundable (0-69 points).

    For decision-making purposes, applications receiving the same adjectival rating will be considered to have an equivalent ranking, although their technical review scores, while comparable, may not necessarily be the same.

    The Selecting Official is the NIST Associate Director for Innovation and Industry Services or designee. The Selecting Official makes the final recommendation to the NIST Grants Officer regarding the funding of applications under the corresponding FFO. The Selecting Official shall be provided all applications, all the scores and technical assessments of the reviewers, and all information obtained from the applicants during the evaluation, review and negotiation processes.

    The Selecting Official will generally select and recommend the most meritorious application for an award based on the adjectival rankings and/or one or more of the six (6) selection factors described in section V.3 of the corresponding FFO. The Selecting Official retains the discretion to select and recommend an application out of rank order (i.e., from a lower adjectival category) based on one or more of the selection factors, or to select and recommend no applications for funding. The Selecting Official's recommendation to the Grants Officer shall set forth the bases for the selection decision.

    As part of the overall review and selection process, NIST reserves the right to request that applicants provide pre-award clarifications and/or to enter into pre-award negotiations with applicants relative to programmatic, financial or other aspects of an application, such as but not limited to the revision or removal of proposed budget costs, or the modification of proposed MEP Center activities, work plans or program goals and objectives. In this regard, NIST may request that applicants provide supplemental information required by the Agency prior to award. NIST also reserves the right to reject an application where information is uncovered that raises a reasonable doubt as to the responsibility of the applicant. The final approval of selected applications and issuance of awards will be by the NIST Grants Officer. The award decisions of the NIST Grants Officer are final.

    Anticipated Announcement and Award Date. Review, selection, and award processing is expected to be completed in mid-late 2016. The anticipated start date for awards made under this notice and the corresponding FFO is expected to be October 1, 2016.

    Additional Information

    a. Application Replacement Pages. Applicants may not submit replacement pages and/or missing documents once an application has been submitted. Any revisions must be made by submission of a new application that must be received by NIST by the submission deadline.

    b. Notification to Unsuccessful Applicants. Unsuccessful applicants will be notified in writing.

    c. Retention of Unsuccessful Applications. An electronic copy of each non-selected application will be retained for three (3) years for record keeping purposes. After three (3) years, it will be destroyed.

    Administrative and National Policy Requirements

    Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles and Audit Requirements: Through 2 CFR 1327.101, the Department of Commerce adopted the Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards at 2 CFR part 200, which apply to awards made pursuant to this notice and the corresponding FFO. Refer to http://go.usa.gov/SBYh and http://go.usa.gov/SBg4.

    The Department of Commerce Pre-Award Notification Requirements: The Department of Commerce will apply the Pre-Award Notification Requirements for Grants and Cooperative Agreements dated December 30, 2014 (79 FR 78390). If the Department of Commerce publishes revised Pre-Award Notification Requirements prior to issuance of awards under this notice and the corresponding FFO, the revised Pre-Award Notification Requirements will apply. Refer to section VII of the corresponding FFO, Federal Awarding Agency Contacts, Grant Rules and Regulations for more information.

    Unique Entity Identifier and System for Award Management (SAM): Pursuant to 2 CFR part 25, applicants and recipients (as the case may be) are required to: (i) Be registered in SAM before submitting its application; (ii) provide a valid unique entity identifier in its application; 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 a Federal awarding agency, unless otherwise excepted from these requirements pursuant to 2 CFR 25.110. NIST will not make a Federal award to an applicant until the applicant has complied with all applicable unique entity identifier and SAM requirements. If an applicant has not fully complied with the requirements by the time that NIST is ready to make a Federal award pursuant to this notice and the corresponding FFO, NIST may determine that the applicant is not qualified to receive a Federal award and use that determination as a basis for making a Federal award to another applicant.

    Paperwork Reduction Act: The standard forms in the application kit involve a collection of information subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act. The use of Standard Forms 424, 424A, 424B, SF-LLL, and CD-346 have been approved by OMB under the respective Control Numbers 0348-0043, 0348-0044, 0348-0040, 0348-0046, and 0605-0001. MEP program-specific application requirements have been approved by OMB under Control Number 0693-0056.

    Notwithstanding any other provision of the law, no person is required to respond to, nor shall any person be subject to a penalty for failure to comply with, a collection of information subject to the requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act, unless that collection of information displays a currently valid OMB Control Number.

    Certifications Regarding Federal Felony and Federal Criminal Tax Convictions, Unpaid Federal Tax Assessments and Delinquent Federal Tax Returns. In accordance with Federal appropriations law, an authorized representative of the selected applicant(s) may be required to provide certain pre-award certifications regarding federal felony and federal criminal tax convictions, unpaid federal tax assessments, and delinquent federal tax returns.

    Funding Availability and Limitation of Liability: Funding for the program listed in this notice and the corresponding FFO is contingent upon the availability of appropriations. In no event will NIST or DoC be responsible for application preparation costs if this program fails to receive funding or is cancelled because of agency priorities. Publication of this notice and the corresponding FFO does not oblige NIST or DoC to award any specific project or to obligate any available funds.

    Other Administrative and National Policy Requirements: Additional administrative and national policy requirements are set forth in section VI.2 of the corresponding FFO.

    Executive Order 12866: This funding notice was determined to be not significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866.

    Executive Order 13132 (Federalism): It has been determined that this notice does not contain policies with federalism implications as that term is defined in Executive Order 13132.

    Executive Order 12372: Proposals under this program are not subject to Executive Order 12372, “Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs.”

    Administrative Procedure Act/Regulatory Flexibility Act: Notice and comment are not required under the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 553) or any other law, for matters relating to public property, loans, grants, benefits or contracts (5 U.S.C. 553(a)). Moreover, because notice and comment are not required under 5 U.S.C. 553, or any other law, for matters relating to public property, loans, grants, benefits or contracts (5 U.S.C. 553(a)), a Regulatory Flexibility Analysis is not required and has not been prepared for this notice, 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.

    Richard R. Cavanagh, Director, Special Programs Office.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01405 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XE355 Endangered and Threatened Species; Initiation of 5-Year Review for Southern Resident Killer Whales AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice of initiation of 5-year review; request for information.

    SUMMARY:

    We, NMFS, announce a 5-year review of Southern Resident killer whales (Orcinus orca) under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA). The purpose of these reviews is to ensure that the listing classification of a species is accurate. The 5-year review will be based on the best scientific and commercial data available at the time of the review; therefore, we request submission of any such information on Southern Resident killer whales that has become available since their original listing as endangered in November 2005 or since the previous 5-year review completed in 2011. Based on the results of this 5-year review, we will make the requisite determination under the ESA.

    DATES:

    To allow us adequate time to conduct this review, we must receive your information no later than April 25, 2016. However, we will continue to accept new information about any listed species at any time.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit information on this document identified by NOAA-NMFS-2016-0006 by either of the following methods:

    Electronic submission: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal www.regulations.gov. To submit comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal, first click the “submit a comment” icon, then enter NOAA-NMFS-2016-0006 in the keyword search. Locate the document you wish to comment on from the resulting list and click on the “Submit a Comment” icon on the right of that line.

    • Mail or hand-delivery: Lynne Barre, NMFS West Coast Region, 7600 Sand Point Way NE., Seattle, WA 98115.

    Instructions: Comments must be submitted by one of the above methods to ensure that the comments are received, documented, and considered by NMFS. 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. 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.) submitted voluntarily by the sender will be publicly accessible. Do not submit confidential business information, or otherwise sensitive or protected information. NMFS will accept anonymous comments (enter “N/A” in the required fields if you wish to remain anonymous).

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Lynne Barre, West Coast Regional Office, 206-526-4745.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Under the ESA, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service maintains a list of endangered and threatened wildlife and plant species at 50 CFR 17.11 (for animals and 17.12 (for plants). Section 4(c)(2)(A) of the ESA requires that we conduct a review of listed species at least once every five years. On the basis of such reviews under section 4(c)(2)(B), we determine whether or not any species should be delisted or reclassified from endangered to threatened or from threatened to endangered. Delisting a species must be supported by the best scientific and commercial data available and only considered if such data substantiates that the species is neither endangered nor threatened for one or more of the following reasons: (1) The species is considered extinct; (2) the species is considered to be recovered; and/or (3) the original data available when the species was listed, or the interpretation of such data, were in error. Any change in Federal classification would require a separate rulemaking process. The regulations in 50 CFR 424.21 require that we publish a notice in the Federal Register announcing those species currently under active review. This notice announces our active review of the Southern Resident killer whale distinct population segment (DPS) currently listed as endangered (70 FR 69903; November 18, 2005).

    Background information on Southern Resident killer whales including the endangered listing, critical habitat designation, recovery planning and protective regulations is available on the NMFS West Coast Region Web site at http://www.westcoast.fisheries.noaa.gov/. Below is a brief list of several significant actions since the endangered listing of the Southern Resident killer whale DPS. Critical habitat was designated in November 2006 (71 FR 69054) and includes 2,560 square miles (6,630 sq km) of marine habitat in Haro Strait and waters around the San Juan Islands, Puget Sound, and the Strait of Juan de Fuca. The final Recovery Plan was released in January 2008 (73 FR 4176), and contains detailed information on status, threats and recovery actions for Southern Residents. Regulations to protect Southern Resident killer whales from vessel effects were released in April 2011 (76 FR 20870). A five year review was completed in 2011 and concluded that no change was needed to the endangered status (NMFS 2011). In 2014 we released a report summarizing research and recovery efforts over the last 10 years. The report and other supporting documents and media are available on our Web site at http://www.nwfsc.noaa.gov/news/features/killer_whale_report/index.cfm. In 2015 Southern Resident killer whales were named as a Species in the Spotlight, one of eight species among the most at risk of extinction in the near future. For more information on the Species in the Spotlight program, please visit our Web site at http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/stories/2015/05/05_14_15species_in_the_spotlight.html.

    Determining if a Species Is Threatened or Endangered

    Section 4(a)(1) of the ESA requires that we determine whether a species is endangered or threatened based on one or more of the five following factors: (1) The present or threatened destruction, modification, or curtailment of its habitat or range; (2) overutilization for commercial, recreational, scientific, or educational purposes; (3) disease or predation; (4) the inadequacy of existing regulatory mechanisms; or (5) other natural or manmade factors affecting its continued existence. Section 4(b) also requires that our determination be made on the basis of the best scientific and commercial data available after taking into account those efforts, if any, being made by any State or foreign nation, to protect such species.

    Public Solicitation of New Information

    To ensure that the 5-year review is complete and based on the best available scientific and commercial information, we are soliciting new information from the public, governmental agencies, Tribes, the scientific community, industry, environmental entities, and any other interested parties concerning the status of Southern Resident killer whales. The 5-year review considers the best scientific and commercial data and all new information that has become available since the listing determination or most recent status review. Categories of requested information include: (1) Species biology including, but not limited to, population trends, distribution, abundance, demographics, and genetics; (2) habitat conditions including, but not limited to, amount, distribution, and important features for conservation; (3) status and trends of threats; (4) conservation measures that have been implemented that benefit the species, including monitoring data demonstrating effectiveness of such measures; (5) need for additional conservation measures or updates to the Recovery Plan, (6) adequacy of the recovery criteria, including information on recovery criteria that have or have not been met; and (7) other new information, data, or corrections including, but not limited to, taxonomic or nomenclatural changes, identification of erroneous information contained in the list of endangered and threatened species, and improved analytical methods for evaluating extinction risk.

    Any new information will be considered during the 5-year review and may also be useful in evaluating the ongoing recovery program for Southern Resident killer whales. For example, information on conservation measures will assist in tracking implementation of actions in the Recovery Plan. Habitat information received during the 5-year review process may also be useful in our consideration of a revision to the designated critical habitat for Southern Resident killer whales. In February 2015, we published a 12-month finding notice on a petition requesting that we revise critical habitat (80 FR 9682). The 12-month finding describes how we intend to proceed with the requested revision and lays out a timeline. The critical habitat designation process is separate from this 5-year review and will include a separate opportunity for public comment.

    If you wish to provide information for this 5-year review, you may submit your information and materials electronically or via mail (see ADDRESSES section). We request that all information be accompanied by supporting documentation such as maps, bibliographic references, or reprints of pertinent publications. We also would appreciate the submitter's name, address, and any association, institution, or business that the person represents; however, anonymous submissions will also be accepted.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.

    Dated: January 20, 2016. Angela Somma, Chief, Endangered Species Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01400 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-PA26JA3.
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request

    The Department of Commerce will submit to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for clearance the following proposal for collection of information under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. chapter 35).

    Agency: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

    Title: Mail Survey to Collect Economic Data from Federal Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic For-Hire Permit Holders.

    OMB Control Number: 0648-xxxx.

    Form Number(s): None.

    Type of Request: Regular (request for a new information collection).

    Number of Respondents: 1,000.

    Average Hours per Response: 12 minutes.

    Burden Hours: 200.

    Needs and Uses: This request is for a new information collection.

    The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Fisheries, Southeast Fisheries Science Center, proposes to collect very basic socioeconomic data from federally-permitted for-hire operators in the Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic fisheries, using a mail sample survey. The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) does not systematically collect information on for-hire trip prices and trip costs in the Southeast. The population consists of those for-hire operators who possess a federal for-hire permit for dolphin-wahoo, coastal migratory pelagics, snapper-grouper, or reef fish species in the South Atlantic or Gulf of Mexico. Each year we will sample approximately a third of the population. The two-page survey will be designed to collect basic data on trip revenues and trip costs as well as other related information. These data are needed to conduct socioeconomic analyses in support of management of the for-hire fishing industry and to satisfy legal requirements. The data will be used to assess how fishermen will be impacted by and respond to federal regulation likely to be considered by fishery managers.

    Affected Public: Business or other for-profit organizations.

    Frequency: Annually.

    Respondent's Obligation: Voluntary.

    This information collection request may be viewed at reginfo.gov. Follow the instructions to view Department of Commerce collections currently under review by OMB.

    Written comments and recommendations for the proposed information collection should be sent within 30 days of publication of this notice to [email protected] or fax to (202) 395-5806.

    Dated: January 20, 2016. Sarah Brabson, NOAA PRA Clearance Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01384 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request

    The Department of Commerce will submit to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for clearance the following proposal for collection of information under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. chapter 35).

    Agency: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

    Title: Alaska Community Quota Entity (CQE) Program.

    OMB Control Number: 0648-0665.

    Form Number(s): None.

    Type of Request: Regular (extension of a currently approved information collection).

    Number of Respondents: 65.

    Average Hours Per Response: 200 hours, Application to become a CQE; 2 hours for Application to transfer QS-IFQ to or from CQE; 20 hours for Application for a CQE to receive a non-trawl LLP license; 1 hour each for Application for Community Charter Halibut Permit and CQE LLP Authorization Letter; 40 hours for CQE Annual Report.

    Burden Hours: 1,544.

    Needs and Uses: This request is for extension of a currently approved information collection.

    The Alaska Community Quota Entity (CQE) Program allocates to eligible communities a portion of the quotas for groundfish, halibut, crab, and prohibited species in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area (BSAI). Currently, there are 98 CQE eligible communities (45 Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) and quota share (QS) halibut and sablefish, 32 charter halibut, and 21 License Limitation Program (LLP) communities), although only a few communities are currently participating. The allocations provide communities the means for starting or supporting commercial fisheries business activities that will result in an ongoing, regionally based, fisheries-related economy. A non-profit corporate entity that meets specific criteria to receive transferred halibut or sablefish QS on behalf of an eligible community may lease the resulting IFQ to persons who are residents of the eligible community.

    Affected Public: Not-for-profit institutions; individuals or households.

    Frequency: Annually.

    Respondent's Obligation: Mandatory.

    This information collection request may be viewed at reginfo.gov. Follow the instructions to view Department of Commerce collections currently under review by OMB.

    Written comments and recommendations for the proposed information collection should be sent within 30 days of publication of this notice to [email protected] or fax to (202) 395-5806.

    Dated: January 19, 2016. Sarah Brabson, NOAA PRA Clearance Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01385 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Office of the Secretary [Docket ID: DoD-2016-OS-0005] Proposed Collection; Comment Request AGENCY:

    Office of the Under Secretary of Defense (Personnel and Readiness), DoD.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    In compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense (Personnel and Readiness) announces a proposed public information collection and seeks public comment on the provisions thereof. Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed information collection; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the information collection on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

    DATES:

    Consideration will be given to all comments received by March 28, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, identified by docket number and title, by any of the following methods:

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

    • Mail: Department of Defense, Office of the Deputy Chief Management Officer, Directorate of Oversight and Compliance, Regulatory and Audit Matters Office, 9010 Defense Pentagon, Washington, DC 20301-9010.

    Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name, docket number and title for this Federal Register document. The general policy for comments and other submissions from members of the public is to make these submissions available for public viewing on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov as they are received without change, including any personal identifiers or contact information.

    Any associated form(s) for this collection may be located within this same electronic docket and downloaded for review/testing. Follow the instructions at http://www.regulations.gov for submitting comments. Please submit comments on any given form identified by docket number, form number, and title.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    To request more information on this proposed information collection or to obtain a copy of the proposal and associated collection instruments, please write to the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense (Personnel and Readiness) (Military Community and Family Policy) Office of Family Readiness Policy, Special Needs Program, ATTN: Rebecca Lombardi, 4000 Defense Pentagon, Washington, DC 20301-4000 or call 571-372-0862.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title; Associated Form; and OMB Number: Family Member Travel Screening, DD Form X678-1TEST, Medical and Education Information, DD Form X678-2TEST, Dental Health Information, and DD Form X678-3TEST, Patient Care Review, OMB Control Number 0704-XXXX.

    Needs and Uses: The DD Forms X678-1 TEST, X678-2 TEST, and X678-3 TEST are to be used during the Family Member Travel Screening (FMTS) process when active duty Service members with Permanent Change of Station (PCS) orders to OCONUS or remote installations request Command sponsorship for accompanied travel. These forms assist in determining the availability of care at a gaining installation by documenting any special medical, dental, and/or educational needs of dependents accompanying the Service member. Throughout the process, form respondents include: (1) Active duty Service members and/or dependents over the age of majority who provide demographic information; (2) medical and dental providers who provide information about dependent medical and dental needs; (3) losing FMTS Office staff who document any special medical, dental, and/or educational needs; and (4) gaining FMTS Office staff who document the availability of special needs support services at a gaining location.

    Affected Public: Individuals or households; medical and dental providers.

    Annual Burden Hours: 2,899 hours.

    Number of Respondents: 9,876 respondents.

    Responses per Respondent: 1 per year.

    Annual Responses: 9,876 per year.

    Average Burden per Response: 18 minutes.

    Frequency: As needed.

    The following is a breakdown of the public time burden for specific FMTS Pilot forms:

    • The DD Form X678-1 TEST Medical and Educational Information informs sponsors and FMTS staff about possible special medical and/or educational needs of each dependent and guides the appropriate record review and the face-to-face interview. This form is completed by Service members and/or family members and internal physicians.

    ○ Total annual public time burden for the DD Form X678-1 TEST: 1,573 hours.

    ○ Average time per response for the DD Form X678-1 TEST (in minutes): 20 minutes.

    ○ Total annual public cost burden for the DD Form X678-1 TEST: $35,714.

    • The DD Form X678-2 TEST Dental Health Information documents the dental health of dependent(s) in preparation for a move to a location where the patient may have limited access to dental care. This form is completed by Service members and/or family members and internal or civilian dentists.

    ○ Total annual public time burden for the DD Form X678-2 TEST: 698 hours.

    ○ Average time per response for the DD Form X678-2 TEST (in minutes): 6 minutes.

    ○ Total annual public cost burden for the DD Form X678-2 TEST: $49,218.

    • The DD Form X678-3 TEST Patient Care Review summarizes each dependent's medical care received outside the Military Treatment Facility (MTF) (completed by non-MTF primary care managers). If applicable, this form is completed by Service members and/or family members and civilian physicians.

    ○ Total annual public time burden for the DD Form X678-3 TEST: 629 hours.

    ○ Average time per response for the DD Form X678-3 TEST (in minutes): 8 minutes.

    ○ Total annual public cost burden for the DD Form X678-3 TEST: $53,081.

    The DD TEST Forms will be piloted to test a standardized FMTS process across the military medical departments. The pilot will determine how the TEST forms can integrate into Service-specific assignment processes. If the forms can successfully integrate into these processes, then these TEST forms will be implemented as DD Forms. For a period of 90 days, the DD TEST Forms will be used in place of existing Service-specific FMTS forms for military families accompanying a Service member from a participating losing installation to a participating gaining installation. These TEST Forms will be monitored until the travel screening processes for all participating families are complete. During the pilot, military medical departments at participating installations will continue to screen non-pilot families using the current military medical department travel screening processes and forms.

    Dated: January 21, 2016. Aaron Siegel, Alternate OSD Federal Register, Liaison Officer, Department of Defense.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01481 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 5001-06-P
    ELECTION ASSISTANCE COMMISSION Sunshine Act Notice AGENCY:

    U.S. Election Assistance Commission.

    ACTION:

    Public Meeting of the Technical Guidelines Development Committee.

    SUMMARY:

    The Technical Guidelines Development Committee (TGDC) will meet in open session on Monday, February 8, 2016 and Tuesday, February 9, 2016 at the U.S. Access Board in Washington, DC.

    DATES:

    The meeting will be held on Monday, February 8, 2016, from 8:30 a.m. until 5:00 p.m., Eastern time (estimated based on speed of business), and Tuesday, February 9, 2016 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m., Eastern time (estimated based on speed of business).

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting will take place at the U.S. Access Board, 1331 F Street NW., Suite 800, Washington, DC 20004-1111; (202) 272-0080.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Patricia Wilburg, NIST Voting Program, Information Technology Laboratory, National Institute of Standards and Technology, 100 Bureau Drive, Stop 8970, Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8930, telephone: (301) 975-6994 or [email protected]

    Agenda Information: Pursuant to the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), 5 U.S.C.A. App. 2, notice is hereby given that the TGDC will meet Monday, February 8, 2016, from 8:30 a.m. until 5:00 p.m., Eastern time, and Tuesday, February 9, 2016 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m., Eastern time. Discussions at the meeting will include the following topics: The Working Groups Activities since the July TGDC Meeting that include Pre-Election, Election and Post-Election; The Constituency Groups Activities since the July TGDC Meeting that include Cyber Security, Human Factors, Interoperability and Testing; the scope of the VVSG in terms of the definition of a voting system, Post-HAVA Voting System Requirements, Usability & Accessibility, and Security; the Standards & Testing Recommendations of the President's Commission on Election Administration (PCEA) and the Standards & Testing used within the Gaming industry; the Standards Setting and Certification Strategies; the Structuring of the Next Generation Guidelines (VVSG 1.1) that include Federal Requirements; State Requirements; and the Mapping State and Federal requirements. The full meeting agenda will be posted in advance at http://vote.nist.gov/. All sessions of this meeting will be open to the public.

    The TGDC was established pursuant to 42 U.S.C 15361, to act in the public interest to assist the Executive Director of the Election Assistance Commission (EAC) in the development of voluntary voting system guidelines. Details regarding the TGDC's activities are available at http://vote.nist.gov/.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The general public, including those who do not attend the meeting, may submit written comments, which will be distributed to TGDC members. All comments will also be posted on http://vote.nist.gov/. For more information, please contact Patricia Wilburg. Patricia Wilburg's contact information is given in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section above. Persons attending meetings in the Access Board's conference space are requested to refrain from using perfume, cologne, and other fragrances (see http://www.access-board.gov/the-board/policies/fragrance-free-environment for more information). If you are in need of a disability accommodation, such as the need for Sign Language Interpretation, please contact Patricia Wilburg, whose contact information is given in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section above.

    Bryan Whitener, Director of Communications & Clearinghouse, U.S. Election Assistance Commission.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01670 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6820-KF-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Orders Granting Authority To Import and Export Natural Gas, To Import and Export Liquefied Natural Gas, Denying Request for Rehearing, and To Vacate Prior Authorization During December 2015 FE Docket Nos. ENSORCIA AMERICA LLC 15-164-LNG AIR FLOW NORTH AMERICA CORP 14-206-LNG FREEPORT LNG EXPANSION, L.P., FLNG LIQUEFACTION, LLC, FLNG, LIQUEFACTION 2, LLC, and FLNG, LIQUEFACTION 3, LLC (collectively, FLEX) 11-161-LNG CONOCOPHILLIPS COMPANY 15-130-LNG MACQUARIE ENERGY LLC 15-181-NG MACQUARIE ENERGY LLC 15-182-LNG MACQUARIE ENERGY LLC 15-183-LNG SIERRA PACIFIC POWER COMPANY, d/b/a NV ENERGY 15-179-NG IRVING OIL TERMINALS INC 15-175-NG PUGET SOUND ENERGY, INC 15-178-NG HOUSTON PIPE LINE COMPANY LP 15-185-NG PEMEX TRANSFORMACION INDUSTRIAL 15-174-NG AUX SABLE CANADA LP 15-188-NG UNIPER GLOBAL COMMODITIES NORTH AMERICA LLC 15-180-NG IRVING OIL COMMERCIAL GP and IRVING OIL OIL TERMINALS OPERATIONS INC 15-165-NG AGENCY:

    Office of Fossil Energy, Department of Energy.

    ACTION:

    Notice of orders.

    SUMMARY:

    The Office of Fossil Energy (FE) of the Department of Energy gives notice that during December 2015, it issued orders granting authority to import and export natural gas, to import and export liquefied natural gas (LNG), denying request for rehearing, and to vacate prior authority. These orders are summarized in the attached appendix and may be found on the FE Web site at http://energy. gov/fe/downloads/listing-doefe-authorizationsorders-issued-2015.

    They are also available for inspection and copying in the U.S. Department of Energy (FE-34), Division of Natural Gas Regulation, Office of Regulation and International Engagement, Office of Fossil Energy, Docket Room 3E-033, Forrestal Building, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585, (202) 586-9478. The Docket Room is open between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

    Issued in Washington, DC, on January 20, 2016. John A. Anderson, Director, Office of Regulation and International Engagement, Office of Oil and Natural Gas. Appendix— DOE/FE Orders Granting Import/Export Authorizations 3752 12/30/15 15-164-LNG Ensorcia America LLC Order blanket authority to export LNG to Mexico in ISO Containers transported by vessel. 3753 12/04/15 14-206-LNG Air Flow North America Corp Final Opinion and Order granting long-term Multi-contract authorization to export LNG in ISO Containers loaded at the Clean Energy Fuels Corp. LNG Production Facility in Willis, Texas, and exported by vessel to Non-free Trade Agreement nations in Central America, South America, the Caribbean or Africa. 3357-C 12/04/15 11-161-LNG Freeport LNG Expansion, L.P., FLNG Liquefaction, LLC, FLNG Liquefaction 2, LLC, and FLNG Liquefaction 3, LLC (collectively, FLEX) Opinion and Order Denying Request for Rehearing of Orders granting long-term, Multi-contract authorization to export LNG by vessel from the Freeport LNG Terminal on Quintana Island, Texas, to Non-free Trade Agreement Nations. 3754 12/16/15 15-130-LNG ConocoPhillips Company Order granting blanket authority to previously imported LNG by vessel. 3755 12/30/15 15-181-NG Macquarie Energy LLC Order granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada/Mexico. 3756 12/30/15 15-182-LNG Macquarie Energy LLC Order granting blanket authority to import/export LNG from/to Canada/Mexico by truck. 3757 12/30/15 15-183-LNG Macquarie Energy LLC Order granting blanket authority to LNG from various international sources by vessel. 3758 12/30/15 15-179-NG Sierra Pacific Power Company d/b/a NV Energy Order granting blanket authority to import natural gas from Canada. 3759 12/30/15 15-175-NG Irving Oil Terminals Inc Order granting blanket authority to import natural gas from Canada. 3760 12/30/15 15-178-NG Puget Sound Energy, Inc Order granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada. 3761 12/30/15 15-185-NG Houston Pipe Line Company LP Order granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Mexico. 3762 12/30/15 15-174-NG Pemex Transformacion Industrial Order granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada/Mexico, and to import LNG from various international sources by vessel, and vacating prior authorization. 3763 12/30/15 15-188-NG Aux Sable Canada LP Order granting blanket authority to import natural gas from Canada. 3764 12/30/15 15-180-NG Uniper Global Commodities North America LLC Order granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada, and vacating prior authorization. 3765 12/30/15 15-165-NG Irving Oil Commercial GP and Irving Oil Terminals Operations Inc Order granting long-term authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01492 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Proposed Agency Information Collection AGENCY:

    U.S. Department of Energy.

    ACTION:

    Notice and Request for Comments.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Energy (DOE) invites public comment on a proposed collection of information that DOE is developing for submission to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

    DATES:

    Comments regarding this proposed information collection must be received on or before March 28, 2016. If you anticipate difficulty in submitting comments within that period, contact the person listed in ADDRESSES as soon as possible.

    ADDRESSES:

    Written comments may be sent to Cynthia Anderson by email at [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Requests for additional information or copies of the information collection instrument and instructions should be directed to Cynthia Anderson by email at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This information collection request contains: (1) OMB No.: New; (2) Information Collection Request Title: Energy and Jobs Survey; (3) Type of Request: New; (4) Purpose: The rapidly changing nature of energy production, distribution, and consumption throughout the U.S. economy is having a dramatic impact on job creation and economic competitiveness, but is inadequately understood and, in some sectors, incompletely measured. The new Energy and Jobs Survey will collect data from businesses in in-scope industries, quantifying and qualifying employment among energy activities, workforce demographics and the industry's perception on the difficulty of recruiting qualified workers. The data will be used to generate an annual Energy and Jobs Report; (5) Annual Estimated Number of Respondents: 30,000; (6) Annual Estimated Number of Total Responses: 10,000; (7) Annual Estimated Number of Burden Hours: 2,908.4; (8) Annual Estimated Reporting and Recordkeeping Cost Burden: 0.

    Statutory Authority:

    Sec. 301 of the Department of Energy Organization Act (42 U.S.C. 7151); sec. 5 of the Federal Energy Administration Act of 1974 (15 U.S.C. 764); and sec. 103 of the Energy Reorganization Act of 1974 (42 U.S.C. 5813).

    Issued in Washington, DC, on January 20, 2016. Cynthia V. Anderson, Senior Advisor, Office of the Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01493 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy [Docket Number: EERE-2016-BT-WAV-0001; Case No. RF-043] Notice of Interim Waiver and Request for Waiver From Panasonic Appliances Refrigeration Systems Corporation of America Corporation (PAPRSA) From the Department of Energy Refrigerator and Refrigerator-Freezer Test Procedures AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice of Granting of Interim Waiver; Notice of Request for Waiver; Request for Public Comment.

    SUMMARY:

    This notice announces receipt of a request for an extension to hybrid basic model PR6180WBC of a previously granted waiver and for an interim waiver from Panasonic Appliances Refrigeration Systems Corporation of America (Case No. RF-043) with respect to the U.S. Department of Energy's electric refrigerator and refrigerator-freezer test procedures. Panasonic seeks to apply the alternative test procedure for measuring the energy usage of similar hybrid wine chiller/beverage center basic models, which DOE required in response to prior waiver requests. Because of a an error discovered in the equation used to calculate the energy usage of these products, DOE has rescinded the prior waivers and is proposing to correct this equation to ensure the accuracy of the calculations provided under the alternative test procedure. DOE solicits comments on its proposed modifications to correct the procedure contained in prior waivers issued to PAPRSA. DOE has issued an interim waiver for hybrid basic model PR6180WBC and all other PAPRSA hybrid basic models previously subject to a waiver.

    DATES:

    DOE will accept comments, data, and information with regard to the proposed modification until February 25, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, identified by Case Number RF-043, by any of the following methods:

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

    Email: [email protected] Include “Case No. RF-043” in the subject line of the message.

    Mail: Ms. Brenda Edwards, U.S. Department of Energy, Building Technologies Program, Mailstop EE-5B/1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585-0121. Telephone: (202) 586-2945. Please submit one signed original paper copy.

    Hand Delivery/Courier: Ms. Brenda Edwards, U.S. Department of Energy, Building Technologies Program, 950 L'Enfant Plaza SW., Room 6094, Washington, DC 20024. Please submit one signed original paper copy.

    Docket: For access to the docket to review the background documents relevant to this matter, you may visit the U.S. Department of Energy, 950 L'Enfant Plaza SW., Washington, DC 20024; (202) 586-2945, between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. Available documents include the following items: (1) This notice; (2) public comments received; (3) the petition for waiver and application for interim waiver; and (4) prior DOE waivers and rulemakings regarding similar clothes washer products. Please call Ms. Brenda Edwards at the above telephone number for additional information.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Mr. Bryan Berringer, U.S. Department of Energy, Building Technologies Program, Mailstop EE-5B, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585-0121. Telephone: (202) 586-0371, Email: [email protected]

    Mr. Michael Kido, U.S. Department of Energy, Office of the General Counsel, Mail Stop GC-33, Forrestal Building, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585-0103. Telephone: (202) 586-8145. Email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    In a petition dated August 21, 2015, Panasonic Appliances Refrigerator Systems Corporation of America (“PAPRSA”) requested that the U.S. Department of Energy (“DOE”) permit PAPRSA to extend the use of an alternative test procedure to a new basic model. PAPRSA also sought an interim waiver to apply this alternative test procedure immediately. The basic model at issue is a hybrid wine chiller/beverage center model that employs technology and design characteristics that prevent the testing of this basic model according to the applicable test procedure found in 10 CFR part 430, subpart B, appendix A. During the course of a negotiated rulemaking that DOE conducted under the auspices of the Appliance Standards Rulemaking Advisory Committee (“ASRAC”), DOE discovered that the alternative test procedure relied on by PAPRSA contained an error in one of the equations used to calculate the energy usage of hybrid products. See 80 FR 17355 (April 1, 2015) (announcing DOE's intention to form a working group to discuss and negotiate potential energy conservation standards for miscellaneous refrigeration products). In accordance with 10 CFR 430.27(k), DOE gives notice of its proposed modification of the prior waivers as set forth below. DOE issued an interim waiver and seeks comment on a waiver that would apply to the new basic model and the basic models covered by the prior waivers.

    I. Background and Authority

    Title III, Part B of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act of 1975 (EPCA), Public Law 94-163 (42 U.S.C. 6291-6309, as codified) established the Energy Conservation Program for Consumer Products Other Than Automobiles, a program covering most major household appliances, which includes the electric refrigerators and refrigerator-freezers that are the focus of this notice.1 Part B includes definitions, test procedures, labeling provisions, energy conservation standards, and the authority to require information and reports from manufacturers. Further, Part B authorizes the Secretary of Energy to prescribe test procedures that are reasonably designed to produce results that measure energy efficiency, energy use, or estimated operating costs, and that are not unduly burdensome to conduct. (42 U.S.C. 6293(b)(3)) The test procedure for electric refrigerators and refrigerator-freezers is set forth in 10 CFR part 430, subpart B, appendix A.

    1 For editorial reasons, Part B of EPCA was codified as Part A in the U.S. Code.

    DOE's regulations allow a person to seek a waiver from the test procedure requirements for a particular basic model of a type of covered consumer product when (1) the petitioner's basic model for which the petition for waiver was submitted contains one or more design characteristics that prevent testing according to the prescribed test procedure, or (2) when prescribed test procedures may evaluate the basic model in a manner so unrepresentative of its true energy consumption characteristics as to provide materially inaccurate comparative data. 10 CFR 430.27(a)(1). A petitioner must include in its petition any alternate test procedures known to the petitioner to evaluate the basic model in a manner representative of its energy consumption characteristics.

    The granting of a waiver is subject to conditions, including adherence to alternate test procedures. 10 CFR 430.27(f)(2). As soon as practicable after the granting of any waiver, DOE will publish in the Federal Register a notice of proposed rulemaking to amend its regulations so as to eliminate any need for the continuation of such waiver. As soon thereafter as practicable, DOE will publish in the Federal Register a final rule. 10 CFR 430.27(l). The waiver process also allows the granting of an interim waiver from test procedure requirements to manufacturers that have petitioned DOE for a waiver of such prescribed test procedures upon a finding that it appears likely that the petition for waiver will be granted and/or if DOE determines that it would be desirable for public policy reasons to grant immediate relief pending a determination on the petition for waiver. 10 CFR 430.27(e). Within one year of issuance of an interim waiver, DOE will either: (i) Publish in the Federal Register a determination on the petition for waiver; or (ii) Publish in the Federal Register a new or amended test procedure that addresses the issues presented in the waiver. 10 CFR 430.27(h)(1).

    A petitioner may request that DOE extend the scope of a waiver or an interim waiver to include additional basic models employing the same technology as the basic model(s) set forth in the original petition. DOE will publish any such extension in the Federal Register. 10 CFR 430.27(g).

    II. PAPRSA's Extension of Waiver Request: Assertions and Determinations

    On August 21, 2015, PAPRSA requested an extension of its previous waivers (Case Nos. RF-022, RF-031 and RF-041) (“2015 waiver request”) under 10 CFR 430.27(g) to its hybrid wine chiller/beverage center basic model, PR6180WBC, with respect to appendix A to subpart B of 10 CFR part 430 (appendix A). PAPRSA, similar to its prior waiver requests, seeks to use a modified version of the test procedure that would specify the use of a higher fresh food compartment temperature during testing. DOE is publishing at the end of this notice PAPRSA's request in its entirety.

    DOE granted a waiver, similar to that requested in PAPRSA's 2015 waiver request, to Sanyo E&E Corporation (Sanyo) 2 in a Decision and Order (77 FR 49443 (August 16, 2012)) under Case No. RF-022. On October 4, 2012, DOE issued a notice of correction to the Decision and Order incorporating a K factor (correction factor) value of 0.85 when calculating the energy consumption (77 FR 60688) (“the 2012 waiver”). DOE granted another waiver to PAPRSA for an additional basic model in a Decision and Order (78 FR 57139 (September 17, 2013)) under Case No. RF-031 (“the 2013 waiver”). These two waivers required testing under the now-obsolete Appendix A1 but with modifications. DOE later granted a waiver (79 FR 55769 (September 17, 2014)) to PAPRSA for another basic model under Case No. RF-041 (“the 2014 waiver”); this waiver required testing under Appendix A with modifications.

    2 Sanyo E&E Corporation has since changed its corporate name to PAPRSA.

    In its original petition, PAPRSA sought a waiver from the DOE test procedure applicable to refrigerators and refrigerator-freezers under 10 CFR part 430 for PAPRSA's hybrid models that consist of single-cabinet units with a refrigerated beverage compartment (i.e., a “fresh food compartment”) in the top portion and a wine storage compartment (i.e., a “chiller compartment”) in the bottom of the units.3 DOE had issued guidance that specified that basic models such as the ones PAPRSA identified in its petition, which do not have a separate chiller compartment with a separate exterior door, are to be tested according to the current DOE test procedure (at that time, appendix A1) with the temperatures specified therein. PAPRSA asserted that the chiller compartment could not be tested at the prescribed temperature because the minimum compartment temperature is 45 °F. PAPRSA submitted an alternate test procedure to account for the energy consumption of its wine chiller/beverage centers. As requested, that alternate procedure would test the chiller compartment at 55 °F, instead of the prescribed 38 °F. To justify the use of this standardized temperature for testing, PAPRSA stated in its petition that it designed these models to provide an average temperature of 55 to 57 °F, which it determined is a commonly recommended temperature for wine storage, suggesting that this temperature is presumed to be representative of expected consumer use. 77 FR 19656. In granting the petition, DOE noted that the test procedures for wine chillers adopted by the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM), California Energy Commission (CEC), and Natural Resources Canada all use a standardized compartment temperature of 55 °F for wine chiller compartments, which is consistent with PAPRSA's approach.

    3 In this notice and in the Order, DOE uses the term “fresh food compartment” to refer to a compartment of a refrigerator that can be tested at the test temperature specified in 10 CFR part 430, subpart B, Appendix A. DOE uses the term “chiller compartment” to refer to a compartment of a refrigerator that cannot be tested at the test temperature specified in 10 CFR part 430, subpart B, Appendix A. Although these terms were recommended by the Miscellaneous Refrigeration Products Working Group to apply to a new product type, miscellaneous refrigeration products, DOE believes that it would be beneficial to adopt terminology in this Case that parallels that negotiated by a wide range of interested parties in the Miscellaneous Refrigeration Products Working Group. For more information, see the docket at http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=EERE-2011-BT-STD-0043.

    DOE, however, recently became aware of a typographical error regarding one aspect of the equations in the 2012 waiver, the 2013 waiver, and the 2014 waiver, to be used when calculating the energy usage of a unit under test. The equation at issue—which addresses the energy use of the fresh food compartment and that DOE had previously prescribed for use as part of the calculation detailed in section 6.2.2.2 of appendix A—did not apply the specified correction factor (0.85) to the equation as intended. The equations in the waivers were as follows:

    Energy consumption of the wine compartment:

    EWine = ET1 + [(ET2−ET1) × (55 °F−TW1)/(TW2−TW1)] * 0.85

    Energy consumption of the refrigerated beverage compartment:

    EBeverage Compartment = ET1 + [(ET2−ET1) × (39 °F−TBC1)/(TBC2−TBC1)]

    Section 6.2.2.2 of appendix A requires that the average per-cycle energy consumption be calculated based on the higher of the two separate compartment calculations. With the 0.85 K factor applied only to the chiller compartment calculation as detailed in PAPRSA's current waiver request, the fresh food compartment would result in the higher per-cycle energy consumption for nearly all test units and the final energy use calculation would not incorporate the 0.85 K factor. The 0.85 K factor should have also been included to similar calculations of energy consumption in sections 6.2.2.1 and 6.2.2.3 of appendix A. In addition, for consistency with the equations in sections 6.2.2.1 to 6.2.2.3 of appendix A, the waiver equations should also have included an energy adder (known as “IET”) for any products that include an automatic icemaker.

    To address these issues, and pursuant to DOE's authority under 10 CFR 430.27(k), DOE is correcting the formulas noted above to read as follows:

    For section 6.2.2.1 of appendix A:

    E = (ET1 × 0.85) + IET

    For section 6.2.2.2 of appendix A:

    Energy consumption of the cooler compartment:

    ECooler Compartment = (ET1 + [(ET2−ET1) × (55 °F−TW1)/(TW2−TW1)]) * 0.85 + IET

    Energy consumption of the fresh food compartment:

    EFreshFood Compartment= (ET1 + [(ET2−ET1) × (39 °F−TBC1)/(TBC2−TBC1)]) * 0.85 + IET

    For section 6.2.2.3 of appendix A:

    E = (Ex × 0.85) + IET

    Under the interim waiver, the corrected equations must be used, going forward, with respect to all of the basic models for which DOE has granted a waiver previously and the basic model PAPRSA identified in its new petition.

    In addition to the errors in the equations, the 2012 waiver and the 2013 waiver reference Appendix A1, which is obsolete. Finally, to update the waivers to reflect the current test procedure and to modify the equations, DOE is consolidating all of the basic models under one, new, corrected interim waiver, which is subject to comment. PAPRSA must begin using a modified test procedure for the new basic model and all of the basic models of hybrid wine chiller/beverage centers that had previously been subject to a waiver. The prior, erroneous waivers are rescinded, and a new, modified, waiver is issued as an interim waiver subject to comment. Rescission of the prior waiver does not affect or invalidate tests conducted pursuant to that waiver while it was in effect.

    III. Conclusion

    Therefore, DOE has issued an Order, stating:

    After careful consideration of all the material submitted by PAPRSA in this matter, DOE grants an interim waiver regarding basic models PR6180WBC,4 KBCS24RSBS, SR6180BC,5 SR5180JBC,6 and PR5180JKBC.7 Accordingly, it is ORDERED that:

    4 New basic model in Case No. RF-043.

    5 DOE notes that PAPRSA's petition in Case No. RF-022 identified the relevant basic models as: JUB248LB, JUB248RB, JUB248LW, JUB248RW, KBCO24LS, KBCS24LS, KBCO24RS, KBCS24RS, and MBCM24FW. Upon further review, however, DOE has determined that these are individual model numbers, rather than basic model numbers. The correct basic model designations, as determined through a review of PAPRSA's filings with DOE's Compliance Certification Management System, are KBCS24RSBS (which covers JUB248LB, JUB248RB, JUB248LW, JUB248RW, KBCO24LS, KBCS24LS, KBCO24RS, and KBCS24RS) and SR6180BC (which covers MBCM24FW).

    6 Originally from Case No. RF-031.

    7 Originally from Case No. RF-041.

    (1) The waivers previously granted under Case RF-022, Case RF-031 and Case RF-041 are rescinded due to erroneous formulae and because the waivers in RF-022 and RF-031 reference an obsolete DOE test procedure.

    (2) PAPRSA must, going forward, test and rate the following PAPRSA basic models as set forth in paragraph (3) below.

    PR6180WBC;

    KBCS24RSBS;

    SR6180BC;

    SR5180JBC; and

    PR5180JKBC.

    (3) The applicable method of test for the PAPRSA basic models listed in paragraph (2) is the test procedure for electric refrigerator-freezers prescribed by DOE at 10 CFR part 430, Appendix A, except that the test temperature for the “cooler compartment” (i.e., the compartment designed to store wine) is 55 °F, instead of the prescribed 39 °F.

    The K factor (correction factor) value is 0.85. The test must include (where applicable) the icemaking energy usage as defined in 10 CFR part 430, subpart B, appendix A, sec. 6.2.2.1.

    Therefore, the energy consumption is defined by:

    If compartment temperatures are below their respective standardized temperatures for both test settings (according to 10 CFR part 430, subpart B, Appendix A, sec. 6.2.2.1):

    E = (ET1 × 0.85) + IET.

    If compartment temperatures are not below their respective standardized temperatures for both test settings, the higher of the two values calculated by the following two formulas (according to 10 CFR part 430, subpart B, Appendix A, sec. 6.2.2.2):

    Energy consumption of the “cooler compartment”:

    ECooler Compartment = (ET1 + [(ET2−ET1) × (55 °F−TW1)/(TW2−TW1)]) * 0.85 + IET

    Energy consumption of the “fresh food compartment”:

    EFreshFood Compartment = (ET1 + [(ET2−ET1) × (39 °F−TBC1)/(TBC2−TBC1)]) * 0.85 + IET.

    If the optional test for models with two compartments and user operable controls is used (according to 10 CFR part 430, subpart B, Appendix A, sec. 6.2.2.3):

    E = (Ex × 0.85) + IET.

    (5) Representations. PAPRSA may make representations about the energy use of its hybrid wine chiller/beverage center products for compliance, marketing, or other purposes only to the extent that such products have been tested in accordance with the provisions set forth above and such representations fairly disclose the results of such testing in accordance with 10 CFR 429.14(a).

    (6) This interim waiver shall remain in effect consistent with the provisions of 10 CFR 430.27(h) and (l).

    (7) This interim waiver is issued on the condition that the statements, representations, and documentary materials provided by the petitioner are valid. DOE may revoke or modify this waiver at any time if it determines the factual basis underlying the petition for waiver is incorrect, or the results from the alternate test procedure are unrepresentative of the basic models' true energy consumption characteristics.

    (8) Granting of this interim waiver does not release PAPRSA from the certification requirements set forth at 10 CFR part 429.

    IV. Summary and Request for Comments

    DOE has granted PAPRSA an interim waiver from the specified portions of the test procedure for certain basic models of PAPRSA hybrid wine chiller/beverage centers and announces receipt of PAPRSA's request for extension of the existing waivers from those same portions of the test procedure. DOE is publishing PAPRSA's request for an extension of waiver in its entirety. The petition contains no confidential information. The petition includes a suggested alternate test procedure to determine the energy consumption of PAPRSA's specified hybrid refrigerators.

    DOE solicits comments from interested parties on the request to extend the waiver to basic model PR6180WBC, including the suggested alternate test procedure, calculation methodology and proposed modifications to correct the procedure that PAPRSA would use going forward. In addition, DOE solicits comments from interested parties on DOE's issuing a new waiver, reflecting corrected the equations and the current DOE test procedure, for the basic models subject to the 2012, 2013, and 2014 waivers. Pursuant to 10 CFR 430.27(d), any person submitting written comments to DOE must also send a copy of such comments to the petitioner. The contact information for the petitioner is Sean R. Blixseth, Senior Legal Counsel, Panasonic Corporation of North America, 2055 Sanyo Avenue, San Diego, CA 92154-6229. All comment submissions to DOE must include the Case Number RF-043 for this proceeding. Submit electronic comments in Microsoft Word, Portable Document Format (PDF), or text (American Standard Code for Information Interchange (ASCII)) file format and avoid the use of special characters or any form of encryption. Wherever possible, include the electronic signature of the author. DOE does not accept telefacsimiles (faxes).

    Issued in Washington, DC, on January 13, 2016. Kathleen B. Hogan, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. BEFORE THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Washington, DC 20585

    In the Matter of: Panasonic Appliances Refrigeration Systems Corporation of America, Petitioner

    Case Number: RF-022; RF-031; RF-041
    REQUEST FOR EXTENSION OF WAIVER AND INTERIM WAIVER

    Panasonic Appliances Refrigeration Systems Corporation of America (“PAPRSA”) respectfully submits this Request for Extension of Waiver and Interim Waiver (“Request”) pursuant to 10 CFR 430.27(g). PAPRSA intends to introduce a new basic hybrid wine chiller beverage center model (“hybrid model”) that employs technology and design characteristics that prevent testing of the basic model according to the test procedures prescribed in 10 CFR 430, subpart B, appendix A and that are substantially the same as the technology and design characteristics for which PAPRSA received two previous waivers and an extension of waiver as a result.8 As provided in further detail below, the Department of Energy (“DOE”) has previously granted PAPRSA 9 two separate waivers and an extension of waiver from DOE's electric refrigerator and refrigerator-freezer test procedures for determining the energy consumption of substantially similar hybrid models in Case Nos. RF-022, RF-031, and RF-041 (the “waiver hybrid models”). Like the waiver hybrid models, PAPRSA has developed a new basic hybrid model, PR6180WBC, that employs substantially the same technology and design characteristics as its waiver hybrid models that make it impossible to certify, rate, and sell this new hybrid model under the existing testing procedures. PAPRSA therefore respectfully requests that DOE extend the previously granted waivers and interim waivers to this new basic hybrid model and that it be permitted to use the alternative testing method for this new basic hybrid model that has already been approved by DOE for the waiver hybrid models.

    8 All current references to the test procedures cite to 10 CFR 430, subpart B, “appendix A,” which became effective on September 15, 2014. References to testing procedures in effect prior to that date cite to 10 CFR 430, subpart B, “appendix A1.”

    9 The first waiver granted in Case No. RF-022 was issued to SANYO E&E Corporation. Effective April 1, 2013, SANYO E&E Corporation changed its corporate name to Panasonic Appliances Refrigeration Systems Corporation of America. Throughout this Petition, PAPRSA will be used to refer to both SANYO E&E Corporation and Panasonic Appliances Refrigeration Systems Corporation of America, unless otherwise indicated.

    1. Existing Waiver Background and Product Characteristics of PAPRSA's Hybrid Models

    In Case No. RF-022, PAPRSA submitted the initial petition for waiver on June 2, 2011 with respect to the test procedures for its waiver hybrid models that consist of a combination of a refrigerated “beverage” compartment in the top portion of these single-cabinet units and a wine storage compartment on the bottom of the units, and for which an alternative testing procedure was necessary to certify, rate, and sell such models.

    As PAPRSA has explained for all of the waiver hybrid models, PAPRSA designed the wine storage compartments to operate between a minimum temperature of 45 °F and a maximum temperature of 64 °F, with an average temperature of 55 to 57 °F. PAPRSA uses heaters to ensure that the temperature in the wine storage compartment never drops below the minimum temperature. If the temperature of a wine bottle falls below 45 °F and approaches freezing, there is an increased risk of damage to wine from crystallization as well as possible damage to the cork. DOE's testing procedures contained in 10 CFR 430, subpart B, appendix A1, however, mandate that energy consumption be measured when the compartment temperature is set at 38 °F. Based on the design characteristics of its waiver hybrid models, PAPRSA needed a waiver with respect to DOE's testing procedures in order to properly “certify, rate, and sell such models,” because the existing test procedures contained in 10 CFR 430, subpart B, appendix A1, did not contemplate a product that is designed to be incapable of achieving a temperature below 45 °F.

    On April 2, 2012, DOE published PAPRSA's previous petition for waiver and sought public comment, and DOE subsequently extended the deadline for comments after PAPRSA submitted a request for extension to clarify the scope of its original petition for waiver. See Federal Register, Vol. 77, No. 96, 29331-29333. No comments were filed opposing the relief requested in PAPRSA's petition for waiver.

    On August 9, 2012, DOE granted PAPRSA's waiver from DOE's electric refrigerator and refrigerator-freezer test procedures for determining the energy consumption of the basic models listed in the Case No. RF-022 petition for waiver. See Federal Register, Vol. 77, No. 159, 49443-44. In permitting PAPRSA to test the wine chiller compartment at 55 °F, DOE noted “that the test procedures for wine chillers adopted by the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM), California Energy Commission (CEC), and Natural Resources Canada all use a standardized compartment temperature of 55 °F for wine chiller compartments, which is consistent with [PAPRSA's] approach.” Id. at 49444.

    On September 26, 2012, DOE issued a correction to its August 9, 2012 order that incorporated the K factor (correction factor) value of .85 that PAPRSA should utilize when calculating the energy consumption of its waiver hybrid models. See Federal Register, Vol. 77, No. 193, 60688-89. Accordingly, DOE ultimately directed PAPRSA to utilize the following test procedure for its waiver hybrid models:

    Energy consumption is defined by the higher of the two values calculated by the following two formulas (according to 10 CFR part 430, subpart B, Appendix A1):

    Energy consumption of the wine compartment:

    EWine = (ET1 + [(ET2−ET1) × (55 °F−TW1)/(TW2−TW1)]) * 0.85

    Energy consumption of the refrigerated beverage compartment:

    EBeverage Compartment= ET1 + [(ET2−ET1) × (38 °F−TBC1)/(TBC2−TBC1)]. See Federal Register, Vol. 77, No. 193 at 60689.

    On April 29, 2013 in Case No. RF-031, PAPRSA submitted a second petition for waiver and interim waiver for a substantially similar hybrid model, SR5180JBC, that shares the same design characteristics that led DOE to approve PAPRSA's waiver request in Case No. RF-022. No comments were filed opposing the relief requested in PAPRSA's second petition for waiver and interim waiver. On September 17, 2013, DOE again granted PAPRSA a waiver from DOE's electric refrigerator and refrigerator-freezer test procedures for determining the energy consumption of basic hybrid model SR5180JBC. See Federal Register, Vol. 78, No. 180, 57139-41.

    On September 17, 2014 in Case No. RF-041, the DOE granted an Extension of Waiver to PAPRSA for hybrid model PR5180JKBC based on Case Nos. RF-022 and RF-031 but under the new procedures in 10 CFR 430, subpart B, appendix A. See Federal Register, Vol. 79, No. 180, 55769—55772. PR5180JKBC employed the same technology and design characteristics as the basic hybrid models in Case Nos. RF-022 and RF-031 that led the DOE to grant waivers in those cases. No comments had been filed opposing the relief requested in PAPRSA petition for extension of waiver and interim waiver.

    2. Request to Extend Scope of Previously Granted Waivers, Interim Waivers, and Extension of Waiver to New Basic Hybrid Model under Previously Approved Alternative Testing Procedure

    As indicated above, PAPRSA has developed a new basic hybrid model, PR6180WBC, that shares the same design characteristics that led DOE to approve PAPRSA's two prior petitions for waiver and extension of waiver. This new basic hybrid model is a single cabinet hybrid model that would be classified as a compact refrigerator with automatic defrost without through-the-door ice service, but which has a wine-chiller compartment designed for an average temperature of 55 to 57 °F. Just as with PAPRSA's waiver hybrid models, this new basic hybrid model contains a heater that prevents the temperature of the wine-chiller compartment from reaching a temperature below 45 °F. Thus, testing this new hybrid model at 39 °F is simply not possible and not representative of the energy consumption characteristics of this new basic hybrid model.

    Further, just as PAPRSA's waiver hybrid models, 0.85 should also be the employed K factor (correction factor) for this new basic hybrid model because it will have a door-opening usage aligned with household freezers. See Appendix B to Subpart 430, 5.2.1.1, because Subpart 430 does not recognize wine chiller as a category.

    In short, there are no material differences between this new basic hybrid model and PAPRSA's waiver hybrid models as it impacts this Request. The design differences between the new basic hybrid model and the waiver hybrid models are the introduction of a more efficient compressor, other sealed system and electrical components for increased efficiency, improved venting, and new external aesthetic features. Although the new basic hybrid model will be more energy efficient, the design characteristics of the new basic hybrid model are the same as the characteristics of PAPRSA's waiver hybrid models that led DOE to grant the prior waivers. For these reasons, PAPRSA respectfully requests that it be permitted to use the following testing procedure for its new basic hybrid model:

    Energy consumption is defined by the higher of the two values calculated by the following two formulas (according to 10 CFR part 430, subpart B, appendix A):

    Energy consumption of the wine compartment:

    EWine = (ET1 + [(ET2−ET1) × (55 °F−TW1)/(TW2−TW1)]) * 0.85

    Energy consumption of the refrigerated beverage compartment:

    EBeverage Compartment= ET1 + [(ET2−ET1) × (39 °F−TBC1)/(TBC2−TBC1)]. PAPRSA respectfully requests that it be permitted to use this approved alternative testing method to test, certify and rate the new basic hybrid models in the same manner as its waiver hybrid models subject to the existing waivers and extension of waiver. 3. Grounds for Interim Waiver

    Pursuant to 10 CFR part 430.27(b)(2), applicants for an interim waiver should address the likely success of their petition and what economic hardships and/or competitive disadvantages are likely to arise absent the grant of an interim waiver.

    As detailed above, it is highly likely that DOE will grant this Request, as PAPRSA is simply seeking to test a new basic hybrid model under the alternative testing procedure already approved by DOE for PAPRSA's waiver hybrid models subject to the existing waivers. The new basic hybrid model contains no materially different design characteristics that should warrant a different result.

    DOE has engaged in a rulemaking process to develop comprehensive test procedures for miscellaneous refrigeration products, which would apply to PAPRSA's new basic hybrid model, but the rulemaking process is not complete. As DOE has previously stated, “[f]ully recognizing that product development occurs faster than the test procedure rulemaking process, the Department's rules permit manufacturers of models not contemplated by the test procedures . . . to petition for a test procedure waiver in order to certify, rate, and sell such models.” GC Enforcement Guidance on the Application of Waivers and on the Waiver Process at 2 (rel. Dec. 23, 2010).10

    10 Available at http://energy.gov/sites/prod/files/gcprod/documents/LargeCapacityRCW_guidance_122210.pdf.

    Certain manufacturers design comparable hybrid models so that the beverage center compartment does not reach below 40 °F, and thus are not covered products under DOE's regulations. Unless PAPRSA is granted an interim waiver, it will be at a competitive disadvantage by being unable to introduce the new basic hybrid model to compete with manufacturers that design their hybrid models in a manner that falls outside of DOE's jurisdiction.

    Given that this Request is likely to be granted and PAPRSA will face economic hardship unless an interim waiver is granted, permitting PAPRSA to immediately certify the new basic hybrid model under the alternative testing method already approved by DOE is in the public interest.

    Respectfully submitted, Sean R. Blixseth, 2055 Sanyo Avenue San Diego, CA 92154 (619) 739-4722 [email protected] Counsel for Panasonic Appliances Refrigeration Systems Corporation of America August 21, 2015
    [FR Doc. 2016-01496 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. EL16-31-000] Sage Grouse Energy Project, LLC v. PacifiCorp; Notice of Complaint

    Take notice that on January 19, 2016, pursuant to Rules 206(a) of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's (Commission) Rules of Practice and Procedure, 18 CFR 385.206(a), Sage Grouse Energy Project, LLC (Complainant or Sage Grouse) filed a formal complaint against PacifiCorp (Respondent) alleging that Respondent improperly determined that Sage Grouse is not a Qualified Facility within the meaning of the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 and conducted Sage Grouse's Feasibility Study erroneously, as more fully explained in the complaint.

    Complainant certifies that copies of the complaint were served upon each person designated on the official service list compiled by the Commission in this proceeding.

    Any person desiring to intervene or to protest this filing must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214). Protests will be considered by the Commission in determining the appropriate action to be taken, but will not serve to make protestants parties to the proceeding. Any person wishing to become a party must file a notice of intervention or motion to intervene, as appropriate. The Respondent's answer and all interventions, or protests must be filed on or before the comment date. The Respondent's answer, motions to intervene, and protests must be served on the Complainants.

    The Commission encourages electronic submission of protests and interventions in lieu of paper using the “eFiling” link at http://www.ferc.gov. Persons unable to file electronically should submit an original and 5 copies of the protest or intervention to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    This filing is accessible on-line at http://www.ferc.gov, using the “eLibrary” link and is available for review in the Commission's Public Reference Room in Washington, DC. There is an “eSubscription” link on the Web site that enables subscribers to receive email notification when a document is added to a subscribed docket(s). For assistance with any FERC Online service, please email [email protected], or call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Comment Date: 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time on February 8, 2016.

    DATED: January 20, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01465 Filed 1-25-16; 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: PR16-12-000.

    Applicants: Columbia Gas of Maryland, Inc.

    Description: Submits tariff filing per 284.123(b)(1)/: SOC to be effective 11/5/2015; Filing Type: 980.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 201601195012.

    Comments/Protests Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/9/16.

    Docket Numbers: PR16-13-000.

    Applicants: Columbia Gas of Ohio, Inc.

    Description: Submits tariff filing per 284.123(b)(1)/: SOC to be effective 11/30/2015; Filing Type: 980

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 201601195014.

    Comments/Protests Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/9/16.

    Docket Numbers: RP16-389-000.

    Applicants: Northwest Pipeline LLC.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: NWP—Measurement Correction/Adjustments Filing to be effective 2/18/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5019.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/1/16.

    Docket Numbers: RP16-390-000.

    Applicants: Iroquois Gas Transmission System, L.P.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: 01/19/16 Negotiated Rates—ConEdison Energy, Inc. (HUB) 2275-89 to be effective 1/18/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5193.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/1/16.

    Docket Numbers: RP16-391-000.

    Applicants: Iroquois Gas Transmission System, L.P.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: 01/19/16 Negotiated Rates—Mercuria Energy Gas Trading LLC (HUB) 7540-89 to be effective 1/18/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5194.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/1/16.

    Docket Numbers: RP16-392-000.

    Applicants: Viking Gas Transmission Company.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: Negotiated Rate PAL Agreement—Southwest Energy LP to be effective 1/19/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5257.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/1/16.

    Docket Numbers: RP16-393-000.

    Applicants: Midwestern Gas Transmission Company.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: Negotiated Rate PAL Agreement—ConocoPhillips Company to be effective 1/17/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5267.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/1/16.

    Docket Numbers: RP16-394-000.

    Applicants: OkTex Pipeline Company, L.L.C.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: Sales and Purchases of Gas for Operational Purposes to be effective 3/1/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5273.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/1/16.

    Docket Numbers: RP16-395-000.

    Applicants: Equitrans, L.P.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: Modified Operational Purchases and Sales to be effective 2/19/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5346.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/1/16.

    Docket Numbers: RP16-396-000.

    Applicants: Texas Eastern Transmission, LP.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: TETLP Jan2016 Cleanup Filing for GTC Section 1 to be effective 2/20/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/20/16.

    Accession Number: 20160120-5000.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/1/16.

    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: RP16-184-001.

    Applicants: Cameron Interstate Pipeline, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing Cameron Interstate Pipeline FERC Dec. 30, 2016 Order Compliance Filing to be effective 3/1/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5256.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/1/16.

    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 January 20, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01470 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 14731-000] Energy Resources USA, Inc.; Notice of Preliminary Permit Application Accepted for Filing and Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Competing Applications

    On November 27, 2015, Energy Resources USA, Inc. filed an application for a preliminary permit, pursuant to section 4(f) of the Federal Power Act (FPA), proposing to study the feasibility of a hydropower project located at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' (Corps) Green River Lock and Dam No. 5, located on the Green River in Warren County, 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) a 770-foot-long, 300-foot-wide intake channel with a 85-foot-long retaining wall; (2) a 98-foot-long, 66-foot-wide powerhouse containing two generating units with a total capacity of 7 megawatts; (3) a 1000-foot-long, 220-foot-wide tailrace with a 40-foot-long retaining wall; (4) a 4.16/69 kilo-Volt (kV) substation; and (5) a 11.5-mile-long, 69 kV transmission line. The proposed project would have an average annual generation of 39,800 megawatt-hours, and operate utilizing surplus water from the Green River Lock and Dam No. 5, as directed by the Corps.

    Applicant Contact: Mr. Ander Gonzalez, Energy Resources USA, Inc., 2655 Le Jeune Road, Suite 804, Coral Gables, Florida 33134. (954) 248-8425.

    FERC Contact: Dustin Wilson, [email protected], (202) 502-6528.

    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. Comments, motions to intervene, notices of intent, and competing applications may be filed electronically via the Internet. See 18 CFR 385.2001(a)(1)(iii) and the instructions on the Commission's Web site 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] or toll free at 1-866-208-3676, or for TTY, (202) 502-8659. Although the Commission strongly encourages electronic filing, documents may also be paper-filed. To paper-file, mail an original and seven copies to: Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    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-14731-000) in the docket number field to access the document. For assistance, contact FERC Online Support.

    Dated: January 19, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01459 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. CP16-28-000] National Fuel Gas Supply Corporation; Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Assessment for the Proposed Line QP, Line Q, and Queen Storage Project Request for Comments on Environmental Issues

    The staff of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC or Commission) will prepare an environmental assessment (EA) that will discuss the environmental impacts of the Line QP, Line Q, and Queen Storage Project involving construction and operation of facilities by National Fuel Gas Supply Corporation (National Fuel) in Forest and Warren Counties, Pennsylvania. National Fuel indicates the project would abandon capacity by sale a natural gas storage system and associated pipeline that is no longer needed by the company and would provide that capacity to other gathering system suppliers in Pennsylvania. Additionally, National Fuel proposes to replace a compromised portion of the pipeline associated with the storage system and install new pipeline to maintain National Fuel's distribution capability. The Commission will use this EA in its decision-making process to determine whether the project is in the public convenience and necessity.

    This notice announces the opening of the scoping process the Commission will use to gather input from the public and interested agencies on the project. You can make a difference by providing us with your specific comments or concerns about the project. Your comments should focus on the potential environmental effects, reasonable alternatives, and measures to avoid or lessen environmental impacts. Your input will help the Commission staff determine what issues they need to evaluate in the EA. To ensure that your comments are timely and properly recorded, please send your comments so that the Commission receives them in Washington, DC on or before February 19, 2016.

    If you sent comments on this project to the Commission before the opening of this docket on December 3, 2015, you will need to file those comments in Docket No. CP16-028-000 to ensure they are considered as part of this proceeding.

    This notice is being sent to the Commission's current environmental mailing list for this project. State and local government representatives should notify their constituents of this proposed project and encourage them to comment on their areas of concern.

    If you are a landowner receiving this notice, a pipeline company representative may contact you about the acquisition of an easement to construct, operate, and maintain the proposed facilities. The company would seek to negotiate a mutually acceptable agreement. However, if the Commission approves the project, that approval conveys with it the right of eminent domain. Therefore, if easement negotiations fail to produce an agreement, the pipeline company could initiate condemnation proceedings where compensation would be determined in accordance with state law.

    National Fuel provided landowners with a fact sheet prepared by the FERC entitled “An Interstate Natural Gas Facility On My Land? What Do I Need To Know?” This fact sheet addresses a number of typically asked questions, including the use of eminent domain and how to participate in the Commission's proceedings. It is also available for viewing on the FERC Web site (www.ferc.gov).

    Public Participation

    For your convenience, there are three methods you can use to submit your comments to the Commission. The Commission encourages electronic filing of comments and has expert staff available to assist you at (202) 502-8258 or [email protected] Please carefully follow these instructions so that your comments are properly recorded.

    (1) You can file your comments electronically using the eComment feature on the Commission's Web site (www.ferc.gov) under the link to Documents and Filings. This is an easy method for submitting brief, text-only comments on a project;

    (2) You can file your comments electronically by using the eFiling feature on the Commission's Web site (www.ferc.gov) under the link to Documents and Filings. With eFiling, you can provide comments in a variety of formats by attaching them as a file with your submission. New eFiling users must first create an account by clicking on “eRegister.” If you are filing a comment on a particular project, please select “Comment on a Filing” as the filing type; or

    (3) You can file a paper copy of your comments by mailing them to the following address. Be sure to reference the project docket number (CP16-028-000) with your submission: Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Room 1A, Washington, DC 20426.

    Summary of the Proposed Project

    National Fuel seeks authorization to abandon by sale all of its facilities comprising its Queen Storage Field, including the base gas in the field, its Queen Compressor Station, and a segment of its Line Q, approximately 5.5 miles in length, beginning at the Queen Compressor Station and traversing northwest to a location just south of the Allegheny River (the “Line Q Segment”). Also, National Fuel seeks authorization to construct and operate approximately 5 miles of new 4-inch-diameter plastic pipeline (“Line QP”) beginning at a point just north of the Allegheny River, and traversing southeast along or adjacent to the existing Line Q right-of-way, to a point approximately 2,000 feet west of the Queen Compressor Station.

    The general location of the project facilities is shown in appendix 1.1

    1 The appendices referenced in this notice will not appear in the Federal Register. Copies of appendices were sent to all those receiving this notice in the mail and are available at www.ferc.gov using the link called “eLibrary” or from the Commission's Public Reference Room, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, or call (202) 502-8371. For instructions on connecting to eLibrary, refer to the last page of this notice.

    Land Requirements for Construction

    Construction of the proposed facilities would disturb about 45.3 acres of land for the pipeline. Following construction, National Fuel would maintain about 20.5 acres for permanent operation of the project's facilities; the remaining acreage would be restored and revert to former uses.

    The EA Process

    The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) requires the Commission to take into account the environmental impacts that could result from an action whenever it considers the issuance of a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity. NEPA also requires us 2 to discover and address concerns the public may have about proposals. This process is referred to as “scoping.” The main goal of the scoping process is to focus the analysis in the EA on the important environmental issues. By this notice, the Commission requests public comments on the scope of the issues to address in the EA. We will consider all filed comments during the preparation of the EA.

    2 “We,” “us,” and “our” refer to the environmental staff of the Commission's Office of Energy Projects.

    In the EA we will discuss impacts that could occur as a result of the construction and operation of the proposed project under these general headings:

    • Geology and soils;

    • land use;

    • water resources, fisheries, and wetlands;

    • cultural resources;

    • vegetation and wildlife;

    • air quality and noise;

    • endangered and threatened species;

    • public safety; and

    • cumulative impacts.

    We will also evaluate reasonable alternatives to the proposed project or portions of the project, and make recommendations on how to lessen or avoid impacts on the various resource areas.

    The EA will present our independent analysis of the issues. The EA will be available in the public record through eLibrary. Depending on the comments received during the scoping process, we may also publish and distribute the EA to the public for an allotted comment period. We will consider all comments on the EA before making our recommendations to the Commission. To ensure we have the opportunity to consider and address your comments, please carefully follow the instructions in the Public Participation section, beginning on page 2.

    With this notice, we are asking agencies with jurisdiction by law and/or special expertise with respect to the environmental issues of this project to formally cooperate with us in the preparation of the EA.3 Agencies that would like to request cooperating agency status should follow the instructions for filing comments provided under the Public Participation section of this notice.

    3 The Council on Environmental Quality regulations addressing cooperating agency responsibilities are at Title 40, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 1501.6.

    Consultations Under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act

    In accordance with the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation's implementing regulations for section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, we are using this notice to initiate consultation with the applicable State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), and to solicit their views and those of other government agencies, interested Indian tribes, and the public on the project's potential effects on historic properties.4 We will define the project-specific Area of Potential Effects (APE) in consultation with the SHPO as the project develops. On natural gas facility projects, the APE at a minimum encompasses all areas subject to ground disturbance (examples include construction right-of-way, contractor/pipe storage yards, compressor stations, and access roads). Our EA for this project will document our findings on the impacts on historic properties and summarize the status of consultations under section 106.

    4 The Advisory Council on Historic Preservation's regulations are at Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 800. Those regulations define historic properties as any prehistoric or historic district, site, building, structure, or object included in or eligible for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places.

    Currently Identified Environmental Issues

    We have already identified an issue we think deserves attention based on a preliminary review of the proposed facilities and the environmental information provided by National Fuel. The proposed replacement of Line Q and installation of Line QP would involve an open cut crossing of the Allegheny River in segments that may contain sensitive freshwater mussels. We encourage comments on this issue as well as other issues you feel should be addressed in the EA.

    Environmental Mailing List

    The environmental mailing list federal, state, and local government representatives and agencies; elected officials; environmental and public interest groups; Native American Tribes; other interested parties; and local libraries and newspapers. This list also includes all affected landowners (as defined in the Commission's regulations) who are potential right-of-way grantors, whose property may be used temporarily for project purposes, or who own homes within certain distances of aboveground facilities, and anyone who submits comments on the project. We will update the environmental mailing list as the analysis proceeds to ensure that we send the information related to this environmental review to all individuals, organizations, and government entities interested in and/or potentially affected by the proposed project.

    If we publish and distribute the EA, copies of the EA will be sent to the environmental mailing list for public review and comment. If you would prefer to receive a paper copy of the document instead of the CD version or would like to remove your name from the mailing list, please return the attached Information Request (appendix 2).

    Becoming an Intervenor

    In addition to involvement in the EA scoping process, you may want to become an “intervenor” which is an official party to the Commission's proceeding. Intervenors play a more formal role in the process and are able to file briefs, appear at hearings, and be heard by the courts if they choose to appeal the Commission's final ruling. An intervenor formally participates in the proceeding by filing a request to intervene. Instructions for becoming an intervenor are in the “Document-less Intervention Guide” under the “e-filing” link on the Commission's Web site. Motions to intervene are more fully described at http://www.ferc.gov/resources/guides/how-to/intervene.asp.

    Additional Information

    Additional information about the project is available from the Commission's Office of External Affairs, at (866) 208-FERC, or on the FERC Web site at www.ferc.gov using the “eLibrary” link. Click on the eLibrary link, click on “General Search” and enter the docket number, excluding the last three digits in the Docket Number field (i.e., CP16-28). Be sure you have selected an appropriate date range. For assistance, please contact FERC Online Support at [email protected] or toll free at (866) 208-3676, or for TTY, contact (202) 502-8659. The eLibrary link also provides access to the texts of formal documents issued by the Commission, such as orders, notices, and rulemakings.

    In addition, the Commission offers a free service called eSubscription which allows you to keep track of all formal issuances and submittals in specific dockets. This can reduce the amount of time you spend researching proceedings by automatically providing you with notification of these filings, document summaries, and direct links to the documents. Go to www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/esubscription.asp.

    Finally, public meetings or site visits will be posted on the Commission's calendar located at www.ferc.gov/EventCalendar/EventsList.aspx along with other related information.

    Dated: January 20, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01464 Filed 1-25-16; 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: RP16-381-000.

    Applicants: Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company.

    Description: Section 4(d) Rate Filing: LSS and SS-2 Tracker Effective November 1, 2015 to be effective 11/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 1/13/16.

    Accession Number: 20160113-5104.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 1/25/16.

    Docket Numbers: RP16-382-000.

    Applicants: Alliance Pipeline L.P.

    Description: Section 4(d) Rate Filing: Contract 1000591 Correction & Others to be effective 12/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 1/13/16.

    Accession Number: 20160113-5246.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 1/25/16.

    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: January 14, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01454 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. CD16-5-000] Thoreson Family Ranch, LLC; Notice of Preliminary Determination of a Qualifying Conduit Hydropower Facility and Soliciting Comments and Motions To Intervene

    On January 5, 2016, as supplemented on January 14 and 15, 2016, Thoreson Family Ranch, LLC, filed a notice of intent to construct a qualifying conduit hydropower facility, pursuant to section 30 of the Federal Power Act (FPA), as amended by section 4 of the Hydropower Regulatory Efficiency Act of 2013 (HREA). The proposed Thoreson Family Ranch Project would have an installed capacity of 2 kilowatts (kW), and would be located at the end of an existing 6-inch-diameter irrigation pipeline. The project would be located near Cottage Grove, in Lane County, Oregon.

    Applicant Contact: Stephen Joel Thoreson, 319 North 20th Street, Cottage Grove, Oregon 97424, Phone No. (541) 942-7407.

    FERC Contact: Christopher Chaney, Phone No. (202) 502-6778, email: [email protected]

    Qualifying Conduit Hydropower Facility Description: The proposed project would consist of: (1) An existing pump house, approximately 8 feet by 10 feet, at the end of an existing 6-inch-diameter irrigation pipeline; (2) one turbine/generator unit with an installed capacity of 2 kW; (3) an approximately 5-foot-long tailrace, discharging to Damewood Creek; and (4) appurtenant facilities.

    The proposed project would have a total installed capacity of 2 kW.

    A qualifying conduit hydropower facility is one that is determined or deemed to meet all of the criteria shown in the table below.

    Table 1—Criteria for Qualifying Conduit Hydropower Facility Statutory provision Description Satisfies
  • (Y/N)
  • FPA 30(a)(3)(A), as amended by HREA The conduit the facility uses is a tunnel, canal, pipeline, aqueduct, flume, ditch, or similar manmade water conveyance that is operated for the distribution of water for agricultural, municipal, or industrial consumption and not primarily for the generation of electricity Y FPA 30(a)(3)(C)(i), as amended by HREA The facility is constructed, operated, or maintained for the generation of electric power and uses for such generation only the hydroelectric potential of a non-federally owned conduit Y FPA 30(a)(3)(C)(ii), as amended by HREA The facility has an installed capacity that does not exceed 5 megawatts Y FPA 30(a)(3)(C)(iii), as amended by HREA On or before August 9, 2013, the facility is not licensed, or exempted from the licensing requirements of Part I of the FPA Y

    Preliminary Determination: The proposed addition of the hydroelectric project to the Thoreson Family Ranch's existing irrigation conduit will not alter its primary purpose of distributing water for irrigation. Thoreson Family Ranch proposes to continue using the conduit, as it has historically, to irrigate fields during July, August, and September. Therefore, based upon the above criteria, Commission staff preliminarily determines that the proposal satisfies the requirements for a qualifying conduit hydropower facility, which is not required to be licensed or exempted from licensing.

    Comments and Motions to Intervene: Deadline for filing comments contesting whether the facility meets the qualifying criteria is 45 days from the issuance date of this notice.

    Deadline for filing motions to intervene is 30 days from the issuance date of this notice.

    Anyone may submit comments or a motion to intervene in accordance with the requirements of Rules of Practice and Procedure, 18 CFR 385.210 and 385.214. Any motions to intervene must be received on or before the specified deadline date for the particular proceeding.

    Filing and Service of Responsive Documents: All filings must (1) bear in all capital letters the “COMMENTS CONTESTING QUALIFICATION FOR A CONDUIT HYDROPOWER FACILITY” or “MOTION TO INTERVENE,” as applicable; (2) state in the heading the name of the applicant and the project number of the application to which the filing responds; (3) state the name, address, and telephone number of the person filing; and (4) otherwise comply with the requirements of sections 385.2001 through 385.2005 of the Commission's regulations.1 All comments contesting Commission staff's preliminary determination that the facility meets the qualifying criteria must set forth their evidentiary basis.

    1 18 CFR 385.2001-2005 (2015).

    The Commission strongly encourages electronic filing. Please file motions to intervene and comments using the Commission's eFiling system at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling.asp. Commenters can submit brief comments up to 6,000 characters, without prior registration, using the eComment system at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/ecomment.asp. You must include your name and contact information at the end of your comments. For assistance, please contact FERC Online Support at [email protected], (866) 208-3676 (toll free), or (202) 502-8659 (TTY). In lieu of electronic filing, please send a paper copy to: Secretary, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426. A copy of all other filings in reference to this application must be accompanied by proof of service on all persons listed in the service list prepared by the Commission in this proceeding, in accordance with 18 CFR 4.34(b) and 385.2010.

    Locations of Notice of Intent: Copies of the notice of intent can be obtained directly from the applicant or such copies can be viewed and reproduced at the Commission in its Public Reference Room, Room 2A, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426. The filing may also be viewed on the Web at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/elibrary.asp using the “eLibrary” link. Enter the docket number (i.e., CD16-5) in the docket number field to access the document. For assistance, call toll-free 1-866-208-3676 or email [email protected] For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: January 20, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01461 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 12646-014] City of Broken Bow, Oklahoma; Notice of Application Accepted for Filing, Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Protests

    Take notice that the following hydroelectric application has been filed with the Commission and is available for public inspection:

    a. Type of Proceeding: Surrender of License.

    b. Project No.: 12646-014.

    c. Date Filed: December 21, 2015.

    d. Licensee: City of Broken Bow, Oklahoma.

    e. Name of Project: Pine Creek Lake Dam Hydropower Project.

    f. Location: The unconstructed project was licensed to be located at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Pine Creek Lake Dam on the Little River, near the town of Broken Bow, McCurtain County, Oklahoma.

    g. Filed Pursuant to: 18 CFR 6.2.

    h. Licensee Contact: Ms. Vickie Pieratt, City of Broken Bow, 210 North Broadway, Broken Bow, Oklahoma 74728, Telephone: 580-584-2285.

    i. FERC Contact: Jennifer Polardino, (202) 502-6437, [email protected]

    j. Deadline for filing comments, interventions and protests is 30 days from the issuance date of this notice. The Commission strongly encourages electronic filing. Please file motions to intervene, protests and comments using the Commission's eFiling system at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling.asp. Commenters can submit brief comments up to 6,000 characters, without prior registration, using the eComment system at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/ecomment.asp. You must include your name and contact information at the end of your comments. For assistance, please contact FERC Online Support at [email protected], (866) 208-3676 (toll free), or (202) 502-8659 (TTY). In lieu of electronic filing, please send a paper copy to: Secretary, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426. The first page of any filing should include docket number P-12646-014.

    k. Description of Project Facilities: The unconstructed project is authorized to be located on the downstream side of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Pine Creek Lake Dam. The project license approved the following new facilities: (1) a 130-foot-wide by 23-foot-long outlet structure connecting to an existing 13-foot-diameter outlet conduit; (2) a steel liner inside the 13-foot-diameter outlet conduit; (3) a 112-foot-wide by 73-foot-long powerhouse containing two generating units having a total installed capacity of 6.4 megawatts; (4) a tailrace returning flows to the Little River; (5) a 0.7-mile-long, 14.4-kilovolt (kV) primary transmission; and (6) appurtenant facilities.

    l. Description of Proceeding: On December 21, 2015, the City of Broken Bow, Oklahoma filed an application to surrender the license for the unconstructed Pine Creek Lake Dam Hydropower Project. In its filing, the licensee states the project is not financially feasible or constructible because it is unable to enter into a power sales agreement to sell project energy.

    m. This filing may be viewed on the Commission's Web site at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/elibrary.asp. Enter the docket number excluding the last three digits in the docket number field to access the document. You may also register online at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/esubscription.asp to be notified via email of new filings and issuances related to this or other pending projects. For assistance, call 1-866-208-3676 or email [email protected], for TTY, call (202) 502-8659. A copy is also available for inspection and reproduction in the Commission's Public Reference Room located at 888 First Street NE., Room 2A, Washington, DC 20426, or by calling (202) 502-8371.

    n. Individuals desiring to be included on the Commission's mailing list should so indicate by writing to the Secretary of the Commission.

    o. Comments, Protests, or Motions to Intervene: Anyone may submit comments, a protest, or a motion to intervene in accordance with the requirements of Rules of Practice and Procedure, 18 CFR 385.210, .211, .212 and .214. In determining the appropriate action to take, the Commission will consider all protests or other comments filed, but only those who file a motion to intervene in accordance with the Commission's Rules may become a party to the proceeding. Any comments, protests, or motions to intervene must be received on or before the specified comment date for the particular application.

    p. Filing and Service of Responsive Documents: Any filing must (1) bear in all capital letters the title “COMMENTS”, “PROTEST”, or “MOTION TO INTERVENE” as applicable; (2) set forth in the heading the name of the applicant and the project number of the application to which the filing responds; (3) furnish the name, address, and telephone number of the person protesting or intervening; and (4) otherwise comply with the requirements of 18 CFR 385.2001 through 385.2005. All comments, motions to intervene, or protests must set forth their evidentiary basis and otherwise comply with the requirements of 18 CFR 4.34(b). All comments, motions to intervene, or protests should relate to project works which are the subject of the license surrender. Agencies may obtain copies of the application directly from the applicant. A copy of any protest or motion to intervene must be served upon each representative of the applicant specified in the particular application. If an intervener files comments or documents with the Commission relating to the merits of an issue that may affect the responsibilities of a particular resource agency, they must also serve a copy of the document on that resource agency. A copy of all other filings in reference to this application must be accompanied by proof of service on all persons listed in the service list prepared by the Commission in this proceeding, in accordance with 18 CFR 4.34(b) and 385.2010.

    q. 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: January 20, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01466 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 12470-010] City of Broken Bow, Oklahoma; Notice of Application Accepted for Filing, Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Protests

    Take notice that the following hydroelectric application has been filed with the Commission and is available for public inspection:

    a. Type of Proceeding: Surrender of License.

    b. Project No.: 12470-010.

    c. Date Filed: December 21, 2015.

    d. Licensee: City of Broken Bow, Oklahoma.

    e. Name of Project: Broken Bow Re-regulation Dam Hydropower Project.

    f. Location: The unconstructed project was licensed to be located at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Broken Bow Re-regulation Dam on the Little River, near the town of Broken Bow, McCurtain County, Oklahoma.

    g. Filed Pursuant to: 18 CFR 6.2.

    h. Licensee Contact: Mr. Larry Bachman, City of Broken Bow, 210 North Broadway, Broken Bow, Oklahoma 74728, Telephone: 580-584-2285.

    i. FERC Contact: Jennifer Polardino, (202) 502-6437, [email protected]

    j. Deadline for filing comments, interventions and protests is 30 days from the issuance date of this notice. The Commission strongly encourages electronic filing. Please file motions to intervene, protests and comments using the Commission's eFiling system at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling.asp. Commenters can submit brief comments up to 6,000 characters, without prior registration, using the eComment system at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/ecomment.asp. You must include your name and contact information at the end of your comments. For assistance, please contact FERC Online Support at [email protected], (866) 208-3676 (toll free), or (202) 502-8659 (TTY). In lieu of electronic filing, please send a paper copy to: Secretary, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426. The first page of any filing should include docket number P-12470-010.

    k. Description of Project Facilities: The unconstructed project is authorized to be located on the downstream side of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Broken Bow Re-Regulation Dam. The project license approved the following new facilities: (1) Three steel 93.5-foot-long penstocks inside the 10-foot-diameter outlet conduit; (2) trashracks; (3) a 112-foot-wide by 23-foot-long powerhouse containing three generating units having a total installed capacity of 4.0 megawatts; (4) a tailrace returning flows to the Little River; (5) a 1,891-foot-long, 13.5-kilovolt (kV) primary transmission; and (6) appurtenant facilities.

    l. Description of Proceeding: On December 21, 2015, the City of Broken Bow, Oklahoma filed an application to surrender the license for the unconstructed Broken Bow Re-Regulation Dam Hydropower Project. In its filing, the licensee states the project is not financially feasible or constructible because it is unable to enter into a power sales agreement to sell project energy.

    m. This filing may be viewed on the Commission's Web site at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/elibrary.asp. Enter the docket number excluding the last three digits in the docket number field to access the document. You may also register online at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/esubscription.asp to be notified via email of new filings and issuances related to this or other pending projects. For assistance, call 1-866-208-3676 or email [email protected], for TTY, call (202) 502-8659. A copy is also available for inspection and reproduction in the Commission's Public Reference Room located at 888 First Street NE., Room 2A, Washington, DC 20426, or by calling (202) 502-8371.

    n. Individuals desiring to be included on the Commission's mailing list should so indicate by writing to the Secretary of the Commission.

    o. Comments, Protests, or Motions to Intervene: Anyone may submit comments, a protest, or a motion to intervene in accordance with the requirements of Rules of Practice and Procedure, 18 CFR 385.210, .211, .212 and .214. In determining the appropriate action to take, the Commission will consider all protests or other comments filed, but only those who file a motion to intervene in accordance with the Commission's Rules may become a party to the proceeding. Any comments, protests, or motions to intervene must be received on or before the specified comment date for the particular application.

    p. Filing and Service of Responsive Documents: Any filing must (1) bear in all capital letters the title “COMMENTS”, “PROTEST”, or “MOTION TO INTERVENE” as applicable; (2) set forth in the heading the name of the applicant and the project number of the application to which the filing responds; (3) furnish the name, address, and telephone number of the person protesting or intervening; and (4) otherwise comply with the requirements of 18 CFR 385.2001 through 385.2005. All comments, motions to intervene, or protests must set forth their evidentiary basis and otherwise comply with the requirements of 18 CFR 4.34(b). All comments, motions to intervene, or protests should relate to project works which are the subject of the license surrender. Agencies may obtain copies of the application directly from the applicant. A copy of any protest or motion to intervene must be served upon each representative of the applicant specified in the particular application. If an intervener files comments or documents with the Commission relating to the merits of an issue that may affect the responsibilities of a particular resource agency, they must also serve a copy of the document on that resource agency. A copy of all other filings in reference to this application must be accompanied by proof of service on all persons listed in the service list prepared by the Commission in this proceeding, in accordance with 18 CFR 4.34(b) and 385.2010.

    q. 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: January 20, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01467 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 14730-000] Palo Verde Power; Notice of Preliminary Permit Application Accepted for Filing and Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Competing Applications

    On November 19, 2015, Palo Verde Power 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 Palo Verde Hydroelectric Project (Palo Verde Project or project) to be located on the Colorado River, near Blythe, Riverside County, California. 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 be located near the existing discharge channel north of Palo Verde Irrigation District's Palo Verde diversion dam. The applicant proposes to generate power by bypassing the releases the irrigation district now makes through the discharge channel's gates into the project's new penstock. The proposed project would consist of: (1) a new 30-foot-long concrete and steel penstock; (2) a new 45-foot-long, 45-foot-wide powerhouse containing a single turbine generator unit with an installed capacity of 29 megawatts; (3) a tailrace discharging powerhouse flows to the existing diversion spill area; (4) less than a mile of 161-kilovolt transmission line; and (5) appurtenant facilities. The project would have an estimated average annual energy generation of 161 gigawatt-hours. There are no federal lands associated with the project.

    Applicant Contact: Michael Blakey, Palo Verde Power, 9734 Diablo Vista Ave., Galt, CA 95632; phone: (209) 251-3105.

    FERC Contact: Jim Fargo; phone: (202) 502-6095.

    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-14730-000.

    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-14730) in the docket number field to access the document. For assistance, contact FERC Online Support.

    Dated: January 19, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01458 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 14732-000] Energy Resources USA, Inc.; Notice of Preliminary Permit Application Accepted for Filing And Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Competing Applications

    On November 27, 2015, Energy Resources, USA, Inc. filed an application for a preliminary permit, pursuant to section 4(f) of the Federal Power Act (FPA), proposing to study the feasibility of a hydropower project located at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' (Corps) Green River Lock and Dam No. 3, located on the Green River in Muhlenberg County, 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) a 770-foot-long, 300-foot-wide intake channel with a 85-foot-long retaining wall; (2) a 98-foot-long, 82-foot-wide powerhouse containing two generating units with a total capacity of 10 megawatts; (3) a 1,000-foot-long, 220-foot-wide tailrace with a 40-foot-long retaining wall; (4) a 4.16/69 kilo-Volt (kV) substation; and (5) a 1-mile-long, 69 kV transmission line. The proposed project would have an average annual generation of 54,900 megawatt-hours, and operate utilizing surplus water from the Green River Lock and Dam No. 3, as directed by the Corps.

    Applicant Contact: Mr. Ander Gonzalez, Energy Resources USA, Inc., 2655 Le Jeune Road, Suite 804, Coral Gables, Florida 33134. (954) 248-8425.

    FERC Contact: Dustin Wilson, [email protected]; (202) 502-6528.

    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. Comments, motions to intervene, notices of intent, and competing applications may be filed electronically via the Internet. See 18 CFR 385.2001(a)(1)(iii) and the instructions on the Commission's Web site 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] or toll free at 1-866-208-3676, or for TTY, (202) 502-8659. Although the Commission strongly encourages electronic filing, documents may also be paper-filed. To paper-file, mail an original and seven copies to: Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    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-14732-000) in the docket number field to access the document. For assistance, contact FERC Online Support.

    Dated: January 19, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01460 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings #2

    Take notice that the Commission received the following exempt wholesale generator filings:

    Docket Numbers: EG16-39-000.

    Applicants: Bethel Wind Farm LLC.

    Description: Notice of Self-Certification of Exempt Wholesale Generator Status of Bethel Wind Farm LLC.

    Filed Date: 1/20/16.

    Accession Number: 20160120-5083.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/10/16.

    Docket Numbers: EG16-40-000.

    Applicants: Tenaska Pennsylvania Partners, LLC.

    Description: Notice of Self-Certification of Exempt Wholesale Generator Status of Tenaska Pennsylvania Partners, LLC.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5422.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/9/16.

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric rate filings:

    Docket Numbers: ER10-2331-052; ER14-630-027; ER10-2319-043; ER10-2317-043; ER13-1351-025; ER10-2330-050.

    Applicants: J.P. Morgan Ventures Energy Corporation, AlphaGen Power LLC, BE Alabama LLC, BE CA LLC, Florida Power Development LLC, Utility Contract Funding, L.L.C.

    Description: Non-Material Change in Status of the J.P. Morgan Sellers.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5414.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/9/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER12-1436-010; ER14-152-005; ER14-153-005; ER14-154-005; ER13-1793-007; ER10-3300-010; ER13-2386-006; ER10-3099-016; ER10-2740-009; ER10-3143-017; ER10-2742-008; ER12-1260-009; ER10-2329-007.

    Applicants: Eagle Point Power Generation LLC, Elgin Energy Center, LLC, Gibson City Energy Center, LLC, Grand Tower Energy Center, LLC, Hazle Spindle, LLC, La Paloma Generating Company, LLC, Lakeswind Power Partners, LLC, RC Cape May Holdings, LLC, Rocky Road Power, LLC, Sabine Cogen, LP, Tilton Energy LLC, Stephentown Spindle, LLC, Vineland Energy LLC

    Description: Notice of Change in Status of the Rockland Sellers.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5412.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/9/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1873-004.

    Applicants: Buckeye Wind Energy LLC.

    Description: Notification of Change in Facts Under Market-Based Rate Authority of Buckeye Wind Energy LLC.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5405.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/9/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-2620-002.

    Applicants: Little Elk Wind Project, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing: Little Elk Wind Project, LLC MBR Tariff to be effective 10/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 1/20/16.

    Accession Number: 20160120-5130.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/10/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER16-165-001.

    Applicants: Southwest Power Pool, Inc.

    Description: Compliance filing: Compliance Filing in ER16-165—Revisions to Clarify Treatment of PTP Revenues to be effective 1/1/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/20/16.

    Accession Number: 20160120-5054.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/10/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER16-518-001.

    Applicants: Central Maine Power Company.

    Description: Tariff Amendment: Amendment to Executed Interconnection Agreement Hackett Mills Hydro Associates to be effective 1/1/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/20/16.

    Accession Number: 20160120-5094.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/10/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER16-750-000.

    Applicants: Bethel Wind Farm LLC.

    Description: Baseline eTariff Filing: Application for Market-Based Rate Authorization to be effective 3/21/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/20/16.

    Accession Number: 20160120-5077.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/10/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER16-750-001.

    Applicants: Bethel Wind Farm LLC.

    Description: Tariff Amendment: Supplement to Application for Market-Based Rate Authorization to be effective 3/21/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/20/16.

    Accession Number: 20160120-5088.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/10/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER16-751-000.

    Applicants: PJM Interconnection, L.L.C.

    Description: Section 205(d) Rate Filing: Service Agreement No. 4395; Queue No. AA1-092 to be effective 12/21/2015.

    Filed Date: 1/20/16.

    Accession Number: 20160120-5120.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/10/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER16-752-000.

    Applicants: Carousel Wind Farm, LLC.

    Description: Section 205(d) Rate Filing: Carousel Wind Farm, LLC Notice of Non-Material Change in Status to be effective 10/31/2015.

    Filed Date: 1/20/16.

    Accession Number: 20160120-5131.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/10/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER16-753-000.

    Applicants: PJM Interconnection, L.L.C.

    Description: Section 205(d) Rate Filing: Second Revised Service Agreement No. 2962; Queue Position W4-016 to be effective 12/21/2015.

    Filed Date: 1/20/16.

    Accession Number: 20160120-5136.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/10/16.

    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: January 20, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01463 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. EL00-95-288] San Diego Gas & Electric Company v. Sellers of Energy and Ancillary Services Into Markets Operated by the California Independent System Operator Corporation and the California Power Exchanges; Notice of Compliance Filing

    Take notice that on January 4, 2016, Shell Energy North America (US), LP submitted its Compliance Filing to Order on Rehearing of Opinion No. 536.1

    1San Diego Gas & Elec. Co. v. Sellers of Energy & Ancillary Servs., 153 FERC ¶ 61,144 (2015) (“Order on Rehearing”), denying rehearing of San Diego Gas & Elec. Co. v. Sellers of Energy & Ancillary Servs., Opinion No. 536, 149 FERC ¶ 61,116 (2014) (“Opinion No. 536”).

    Any person desiring to intervene or to protest this filing must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.211, 385.214). Protests will be considered by the Commission in determining the appropriate action to be taken, but will not serve to make protestants parties to the proceeding. Any person wishing to become a party must file a notice of intervention or motion to intervene, as appropriate. Such notices, motions, or protests must be filed on or before the comment date. On or before the comment date, it is not necessary to serve motions to intervene or protests on persons other than the Applicant.

    The Commission encourages electronic submission of protests and interventions in lieu of paper using the “eFiling” link at http://www.ferc.gov. Persons unable to file electronically should submit an original and 5 copies of the protest or intervention to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    This filing is accessible on-line at http://www.ferc.gov, using the “eLibrary” link and is available for review in the Commission's Public Reference Room in Washington, DC. There is an “eSubscription” link on the Web site that enables subscribers to receive email notification when a document is added to a subscribed docket(s). For assistance with any FERC Online service, please email [email protected], or call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Comment Date: 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time on March 9, 2016.

    Dated: January 19, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01456 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings #1

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric rate filings:

    Docket Numbers: ER10-2331-051; ER14-630-026; ER10-2319-042; ER10-2317-042; ER13-1351-024; ER10-2330-049.

    Applicants: J.P. Morgan Ventures Energy Corporation, AlphaGen Power LLC, BE Alabama LLC, BE CA LLC, Florida Power Development LLC, Utility Contract Funding, L.L.C.

    Description: Non-Material Change in Status of the J.P. Morgan Sellers.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5403.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/9/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER12-839-002; ER15-1657-002.

    Applicants: Entergy Rhode Island State Energy, L.P., SEPG Energy Marketing Services, LLC.

    Description: Notice of Non-Material Change in Status of Entergy Rhode Island State Energy, L.P., et al.

    Filed Date: 1/15/16.

    Accession Number: 20160115-5686.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/5/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-793-001.

    Applicants: Southern Indiana Gas and Electric Company.

    Description: Market-Based Triennial Review Filing: Supplement to SIGECO/Vectren South Triennial MBR Update in ER15-793 to be effective 3/19/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5298.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/9/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1862-000.

    Applicants: Tucson Electric Power Company.

    Description: Report Filing: Response to Deficiency Letter to be effective N/A.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5258.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/9/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-2256-001.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: Compliance filing: 2016-01-19 Order 809 Compliance Filing to be effective 11/5/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5274.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/9/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-2615-002.

    Applicants: Goodwell Wind Project, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing: Goodwell Wind Project, LLC MBR Tariff to be effective 10/1/2015.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5339.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/9/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER16-139-001.

    Applicants: Southwest Power Pool, Inc.

    Description: Tariff Amendment: Deficiency Response in ER16-139—Revisions to Attachment W to Update GFAs to be effective 1/1/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5272.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/9/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER16-745-000.

    Applicants: Duke Energy Carolinas, LLC.

    Description: Section 205(d) Rate Filing: NCEMC Energy Exchange Agreement RS No. 347 to be effective 3/21/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5340.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/9/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER16-746-000.

    Applicants: Constellation Power Source Generation, LLC.

    Description: Section 205(d) Rate Filing: FERC Rate Schedule No. 2 to be effective 2/1/2016.

    Filed Date: 1/19/16.

    Accession Number: 20160119-5341.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/9/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER16-747-000.

    Applicants: PJM Interconnection, L.L.C.

    Description: Section 205(d) Rate Filing: Original Service Agreement No. 4355; Queue Z2-011 (ISA) to be effective 12/21/2015.

    Filed Date: 1/20/16.

    Accession Number: 20160120-5005.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/10/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER16-748-000.

    Applicants: Sentinel Energy Center, LLC.

    Description: Section 205(d) Rate Filing: Notice of Succession to be effective 12/21/2015.

    Filed Date: 1/20/16.

    Accession Number: 20160120-5016.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/10/16.

    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: January 20, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-01462 Filed 1-25-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings #1

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric corporate filings:

    Docket Numbers: EC16-54-000.

    Applicants: Goal Line L.P., KES Kingsburg, L.P., Colton Power L.P.

    Description: Correction to December 23, 2015 Application for Authorization of Disposition of Jurisdictional Facilities of Goal Line L.P., et al.

    Filed Date: 1/15/16.

    Accession Number: 20160115-5669.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 1/25/16.

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric rate filings:

    Docket Numbers: ER13-712-011; ER10-1325-006; ER16-141-002; ER12-1946-006; ER15-255-001; ER10-2566-007; ER10-1333-006; ER15-2387-001; ER10-2034-005; ER10-2032-005; ER10-2033-005; ER13-2322-003; ER15-190-003; ER10-1335-006; ER10-1328-002; ER12-1502-003; ER10-2567-003; ER12-2313-002; ER10-1330-004; ER16-323-001; ER16-61-002; ER16-63-002; ER10-1331-002; ER16-64-002; ER10-1332-002; ER10-2522-003.

    Applicants: Cimarron Wind Energy, LLC, CinCap V, LLC, Conetoe II Solar, LLC, Duke Energy Beckjord, LLC, Duke Energy Beckjord Storage, LLC, Duke Energy Carolinas, LLC, Duke Energy Commercial Enterprises, Inc., Duke Energy Florida, Inc., Duke Energy Indiana, Inc., Duke Energy Kentucky, Inc., Duke Energy Ohio, Inc., Duke Energy Progress, Inc., Duke Energy Renewable Services, LLC, Duke Energy Retail Sales, LLC, Happy Jack Windpower, LLC, Ironwood Windpower, LLC, Kit Carson Windpower, LLC, Laurel Hill Wind Energy, LLC, North Allegheny Wind, LLC, Ohio Valley Electric Corporation, Seville Solar One LLC, Seville Solar Two LLC, Silver Sage Windpower, LLC, Tallbear Seville LLC, Three Buttes Windpower, LLC, Top of the World Wind Energy, LLC.

    Description: Notification of Non-Material Change in Status of Duke Energy Corporation MBR Sellers.

    Filed Date: 1/15/16.

    Accession Number: 20160115-5676.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/5/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1019-004.

    Applicants: Fowler Ridge IV Wind Farm LLC.

    Description: Notice of Non-Material Change in Status of Fowler Ridge IV Wind Farm LLC.

    Filed Date: 1/15/16.

    Accession Number: 20160115-5650.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 2/5/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1861-000.

    Applicants: Tucson Electric Power Company.

    Description: Report Filing: Response to Deficiency Letter t