Federal Register Vol. 81, No.165,

Federal Register Volume 81, Issue 165 (August 25, 2016)

Page Range58381-58806
FR Document

81_FR_165
Current View
Page and SubjectPDF
81 FR 58803 - 100th Anniversary of the National Park ServicePDF
81 FR 58468 - Notice of Request for Revision to and Extension of Approval of an Information Collection; Untreated Oranges, Tangerines, and Grapefruit From Mexico Transiting the United States to Foreign CountriesPDF
81 FR 58550 - Sunshine Act Meetings; Unified Carrier Registration Plan Board of DirectorsPDF
81 FR 58395 - Security Zone; U.S. Navy/U.S. Coast Guard Assets Demonstration in Conjunction With Fleet Week San Diego, San Diego Bay; San Diego, CAPDF
81 FR 58475 - Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products From India, Italy, the People's Republic of China, the Republic of Korea, and Taiwan: Notice of Correction to the Antidumping Duty OrdersPDF
81 FR 58474 - Drawn Stainless Steel Sinks From the People's Republic of China: Notice of Court Decision Not in Harmony With Amended Final Determination Pursuant to Court DecisionPDF
81 FR 58394 - Special Local Regulation; San Diego Bayfair; Mission Bay, San Diego, CAPDF
81 FR 58476 - Potassium Permanganate From the People's Republic of China: Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2014PDF
81 FR 58394 - Special Local Regulation; San Diego Maritime Museum Tall Ship Festival of Sail; San Diego Bay, CAPDF
81 FR 58473 - U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework Self-Certification NoticePDF
81 FR 58410 - International Fisheries; Western and Central Pacific Fisheries for Highly Migratory Species; Closure of Purse Seine Fishery in the ELAPS in 2016PDF
81 FR 58536 - Advisory Board on Toxic Substances and Worker Health: Subcommittee on the Site Exposure Matrices (SEM); MeetingPDF
81 FR 58535 - Advisory Board on Toxic Substances and Worker Health: Subcommittee on Evidentiary Requirements for Part B Lung Disease; MeetingPDF
81 FR 58419 - Modification of Regulations Regarding Basis for Normal ValuePDF
81 FR 58535 - Advisory Board on Toxic Substances and Worker Health: Subcommittee on Medical Advice, Weighing Medical Evidence; MeetingPDF
81 FR 58533 - Senior Executive Service; Appointment of Members to the Performance Review BoardPDF
81 FR 58411 - Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Snapper-Grouper Resources of the South Atlantic; Trip Limit ReductionPDF
81 FR 58411 - Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic; 2016 Recreational Accountability Measure and Closure for South Atlantic Golden TilefishPDF
81 FR 58545 - Foreign Affairs Policy Board Meeting Notice; Closed MeetingPDF
81 FR 58407 - Natamycin; Exemption From the Requirement of a TolerancePDF
81 FR 58510 - Meeting of the Local Government Advisory CommitteePDF
81 FR 58478 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Maintenance, Repair, and Decommissioning of a Liquefied Natural Gas Facility off MassachusettsPDF
81 FR 58531 - Miscellaneous Tariff Bill (MTB) Petition System Submission of Petition and Comment Forms for OMB ReviewPDF
81 FR 58495 - Permanent Advisory Committee To Advise the U.S. Commissioners to the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission; Meeting AnnouncementPDF
81 FR 58466 - Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Reef Fish Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico; Amendment 45PDF
81 FR 58494 - Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Fishery Products Subject to Trade Restrictions Pursuant to Certification Under the High Seas Driftnet Fishing (HSDF) Moratorium Protection ActPDF
81 FR 58496 - Notice of Intent To Prepare a Legislative Environmental Impact Statement for the Nevada Test and Training Range Military Land Withdrawal at Nellis Air Force Base, NevadaPDF
81 FR 58514 - Statement of Organization, Functions, and Delegations of AuthorityPDF
81 FR 58516 - Abbreviated New Drug Application Submissions-Refuse To Receive for Lack of Justification of Impurity Limits; Guidance for Industry; AvailabilityPDF
81 FR 58528 - Extension of Agency Information Collection Activity Under OMB Review: Aviation Security Customer Satisfaction Performance Measurement Passenger SurveyPDF
81 FR 58497 - Desert Southwest Region Transmission, Transmission Losses, Unreserved Use Penalties, and Ancillary Services-Rate Order No. WAPA-175PDF
81 FR 58424 - Exposure of Underground Miners to Diesel ExhaustPDF
81 FR 58422 - Examinations of Working Places in Metal and Nonmetal MinesPDF
81 FR 58540 - South Carolina Electric & Gas Company and South Carolina Public Service Authority; Virgil C. Summer Nuclear Station, Units 2 and 3; Piping Line Number Additions, Deletions and Functional Capability Re-DesignationPDF
81 FR 58527 - Agency Information Collection Activities: 287(g) Candidate Questionnaire, Form No. 70-009; Extension, Without Change; Comment Request; OMB Control No. 1653-0047PDF
81 FR 58468 - Notice of Request for Approval of an Information CollectionPDF
81 FR 58529 - Filing of Plats of Survey: CaliforniaPDF
81 FR 58553 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Information Collection Revision; Comment Request; Diversity Self-Assessment Template for Entities Regulated by the OCCPDF
81 FR 58515 - Proposed Information Collection Activity; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 58526 - National Maritime Security Advisory Committee; VacanciesPDF
81 FR 58470 - Black Hills National Forest, South Dakota and Wyoming, Black Hills Resilient Landscapes ProjectPDF
81 FR 58529 - Filing of Plats of Survey: Oregon/WashingtonPDF
81 FR 58545 - Meeting of the Regional Resource Stewardship CouncilPDF
81 FR 58549 - Meeting: RTCA Program Management CommitteePDF
81 FR 58395 - Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Reynolds Channel, Nassau County, NYPDF
81 FR 58469 - Submission for OMB Review; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 58497 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Improvement Act of 2006 (Pub. L. 109-270) State Plan GuidePDF
81 FR 58517 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Preparing a Claim of Categorical Exclusion or an Environmental Assessment for Submission to the Center for Food Safety and Applied NutritionPDF
81 FR 58395 - Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Columbia River, Portland, OR and Vancouver, WAPDF
81 FR 58539 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 58513 - Agency Forms Undergoing Paperwork Reduction Act ReviewPDF
81 FR 58559 - Agency Information Collection (Availability of Educational Licensing, and Certification Records) Activity Under OMB ReviewPDF
81 FR 58558 - Agency Information Collection (Request for Nursing Home Information in Connection With Claim for Aid and Attendance (VA Form 21-0779))PDF
81 FR 58555 - Proposed Information Collection (Acquisition Regulation (VAAR) Provision 852.214-70, Caution to Bidder-Bid Envelopes); Activity: Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 58555 - Proposed Information Collection: (Acquisition Regulation (VAAR) Clause 852.270-3, Purchase of Shellfish); Activity: Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 58533 - Federal Advisory Council on Occupational Safety and Health (FACOSH)PDF
81 FR 58530 - Certain Resealable Packages With Slider Devices; Commission Decision To Review-in-Part an Initial Determination Finding No Violation of Section 337; On Review, To Modify-in-Part the Initial Determination and To Take No Position on One Issue; Affirmance of the Finding of No Violation and Termination of the InvestigationPDF
81 FR 58537 - Records Schedules; Availability and Request for CommentsPDF
81 FR 58523 - National Institute of General Medical Sciences; Notice of Closed MeetingPDF
81 FR 58523 - National Institute on Aging; Notice of MeetingPDF
81 FR 58524 - National Cancer Institute; Notice of Closed MeetingsPDF
81 FR 58525 - Submission for OMB Review; 30-Day Comment Request Health Information National Trends Survey V (HINTS V) (National Cancer Institute)PDF
81 FR 58522 - Submission for OMB Review; 30-Day Comment Request Study To Estimate Radiation Doses and Cancer Risks From Radioactive Fallout From the Trinity Nuclear Test-National Cancer Institute (NCI)PDF
81 FR 58558 - Proposed Information Collection (Acquisition Regulation (VAAR) Provision 852.211-71, Special Notice); Activity: Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 58557 - Proposed Information Collection (Veterans Affairs Acquisition Regulation (VAAR) Clause 852.211-70, Service Data Manual); Activity: Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 58556 - Proposed Information Collection (Veterans Affairs Acquisition Regulation (VAAR) Clause 852.211-72, Technical Industry Standards); Activity: Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 58559 - Agency Information Collection: VA Form 22-1999v (Certificate of Delivery of Advance Payment and Enrollment)PDF
81 FR 58554 - Proposed Information Collection (Transfer of Scholastic Credit (Schools) (FL-315))PDF
81 FR 58554 - Proposed Information Collection (VA Form Letter 5-127, Inquiry Concerning Applicant for Employment) Activity: Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 58557 - Proposed Information Collection (Application for Burial Benefits (Under 38 U.S.C. Chapter 23), VA Form 21P-530); Activity: Under OMB ReviewPDF
81 FR 58472 - President's Export Council Subcommittee on Export Administration; Notice of Partially Closed MeetingPDF
81 FR 58531 - Hot-Rolled Carbon Steel Flat Products From Russia; Scheduling of an Expedited Five-Year ReviewPDF
81 FR 58511 - Agency Forms Undergoing Paperwork Reduction Act ReviewPDF
81 FR 58532 - Certain Inkjet Printers, Printheads, and Ink Cartridges, Components Thereof, and Products Containing the Same; Commission's Determination Not To Review Initial Determinations Terminating Certain Respondents Based on Settlement and Withdrawal of the Complaint as to the Remaining Respondents; Termination of the InvestigationPDF
81 FR 58550 - Tireco, Inc., Ruling on Petition for Decision of Inconsequential NoncompliancePDF
81 FR 58382 - Removal of FDIC Regulations Regarding Fair Credit Reporting Transferred to the Consumer Financial Protection BureauPDF
81 FR 58472 - Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) 281-Miami, Florida; Notification of Proposed Production Activity Carrier InterAmerica Corporation (Heating, Ventilating and Air Conditioning Systems); Miami, FloridaPDF
81 FR 58526 - National Advisory Council; MeetingPDF
81 FR 58545 - 2016 Special 301 Out-of-Cycle Review of Notorious Markets: Request for CommentsPDF
81 FR 58537 - OMB Sequestration Update Report to the President and Congress for Fiscal Year 2017PDF
81 FR 58510 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Information Requirements for Boilers and Industrial FurnacesPDF
81 FR 58438 - Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; North Dakota; Revisions to Air Pollution Control RulesPDF
81 FR 58511 - Notice of Agreements FiledPDF
81 FR 58434 - Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; State of Wyoming; Emission Inventory Rule for 2008 Ozone NAAQS and Revisions to Incorporation by ReferencePDF
81 FR 58397 - Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; State of Wyoming; Emission Inventory Rule for 2008 Ozone NAAQS and Revisions to Incorporation by ReferencePDF
81 FR 58435 - Determination of Attainment by the Attainment Date for the 2008 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards; Pennsylvania; Pittsburgh-Beaver ValleyPDF
81 FR 58402 - Air Plan Approval; Indiana; RACM Determination for Indiana Portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton 1997 Annual PM2.5PDF
81 FR 58435 - Air Plan Approval; Indiana; RACM Determination for Indiana Portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton 1997 Annual PM2.5PDF
81 FR 58400 - Air Plan Approval; North Carolina; Regional Haze Progress ReportPDF
81 FR 58405 - Approval and Promulgation of State Plans for Designated Facilities and Pollutants; Virgin Islands; Sewage Sludge IncineratorsPDF
81 FR 58442 - Approval and Promulgation of State Plans for Designated Facilities and Pollutants; Virgin Islands; Sewage Sludge IncineratorsPDF
81 FR 58521 - Human Food By-Products for Use as Animal Food; Draft Guidance for Industry; AvailabilityPDF
81 FR 58421 - Classification of Activities as Harvesting, Packing, Holding, or Manufacturing/Processing for Farms and Facilities; Draft Guidance for Industry; AvailabilityPDF
81 FR 58519 - Current Good Manufacturing Practice Requirements for Food for Animals; Draft Guidance for Industry; AvailabilityPDF
81 FR 58384 - Standard Instrument Approach Procedures, and Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle Departure Procedures; Miscellaneous AmendmentsPDF
81 FR 58390 - Standard Instrument Approach Procedures, and Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle Departure Procedures; Miscellaneous AmendmentsPDF
81 FR 58472 - President's Export Council: Meeting of the President's Export CouncilPDF
81 FR 58387 - Standard Instrument Approach Procedures, and Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle Departure Procedures; Miscellaneous AmendmentsPDF
81 FR 58392 - Standard Instrument Approach Procedures, and Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle Departure Procedures; Miscellaneous AmendmentsPDF
81 FR 58544 - Modifications to the Disability Determination Procedures; Extension of Testing of Some Disability Redesign FeaturesPDF
81 FR 58425 - Customer Identification Programs, Anti-Money Laundering Programs, and Beneficial Ownership Requirements for Banks Lacking a Federal Functional RegulatorPDF
81 FR 58769 - Self-Regulatory Organizations: Notice of Filing of a Proposed Rule Change by Miami International Securities Exchange, LLC To Adopt New Rules To Govern the Trading of Complex Orders on the ExchangePDF
81 FR 58542 - Privacy Act of 1974; System of RecordsPDF
81 FR 58381 - Federal Employees Health Benefits Program and Federal Employees Dental and Vision Insurance Program: Excepted Service and Pathways Programs Miscellaneous Clarifications and CorrectionsPDF
81 FR 58417 - Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace for the Following Texas Towns; Levelland, TX; Vernon, TX; and Winters, TXPDF
81 FR 58382 - Establishment of Class E Airspace; Dupree, SDPDF
81 FR 58383 - Establishment of Class E Airspace; Slaton, TXPDF
81 FR 58414 - Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace for the Paragould, ARPDF
81 FR 58413 - Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace for the Following Ohio Towns; Marion, OH; Portsmouth, OH; Van Wert, OH; and Versailles, OHPDF
81 FR 58416 - Proposed Establishment Class E Airspace, Silver Springs, NVPDF
81 FR 58547 - Generalized System of Preferences (GSP): Notice of Initiation of the 2016/2017 Annual GSP Product and Country Practices Review; Travel Goods Supplemental Comment Period and Hearing; Deadlines for Filing PetitionsPDF
81 FR 58443 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Rehabilitation of the Jetty System at the Mouth of the Columbia River: Jetty A, North Jetty, and South Jetty, in Washington and OregonPDF
81 FR 58550 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Requests for Comments; Clearance of Renewed Approval of Information Collection: Aviation Medical Examiner ProgramPDF
81 FR 58549 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Requests for Comments; Clearance of Renewed Approval of Information Collection: Anti-Drug Program for Personnel Engaged in Specific Aviation ActivitiesPDF
81 FR 58653 - Guidance for Executive Order 13673, “Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces”PDF
81 FR 58652 - Federal Acquisition Regulation; Federal Acquisition Circular 2005-90; Small Entity Compliance GuidePDF
81 FR 58562 - Federal Acquisition Regulation; Fair Pay and Safe WorkplacesPDF
81 FR 58561 - Federal Acquisition Regulation; Federal Acquisition Circular 2005-90; IntroductionPDF

Issue

81 165 Thursday, August 25, 2016 Contents Agriculture Agriculture Department See

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

See

Food and Nutrition Service

See

Forest Service

See

Office of Advocacy and Outreach

AIRFORCE Air Force Department NOTICES Environmental Impact Statements; Availability, etc.: Nevada Test and Training Range Military Land Withdrawal at Nellis Air Force Base, NV, 58496-58497 2016-20401 Animal Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Untreated Oranges, Tangerines, and Grapefruit from Mexico Transiting the United States to Foreign Countries; Revision and Extension, 58468-58469 2016-20496 Centers Disease Centers for Disease Control and Prevention NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 58511-58514 2016-20333 2016-20366 Children Children and Families Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Assessing the Implementation and Cost of High Quality Early Care and Education—Comparative Multi-Case Study, 58515-58516 2016-20386 Statements of Organization, Functions, and Delegations of Authority, 58514-58515 2016-20400 Coast Guard Coast Guard RULES Drawbridge Operations: Columbia River, Portland, OR and Vancouver, WA, 58395 2016-20368 Reynolds Channel, Nassau County, NY, 58395 2016-20372 Security Zones: U.S. Navy/U.S. Coast Guard Assets Demonstration in Conjunction with Fleet Week San Diego, San Diego Bay, San Diego, CA, 58395-58397 2016-20432 Special Local Regulations: San Diego Bayfair, Mission Bay, San Diego, CA, 58394 2016-20426 San Diego Maritime Museum Tall Ship Festival of Sail, San Diego Bay, CA, 58394 2016-20422 NOTICES Requests for Nominations: National Maritime Security Advisory Committee, 58526 2016-20384 Commerce Commerce Department See

Foreign-Trade Zones Board

See

Industry and Security Bureau

See

International Trade Administration

See

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Comptroller Comptroller of the Currency NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Diversity Self-Assessment Template for Entities Regulated by the OCC, 58553-58554 2016-20387 Defense Department Defense Department See

Air Force Department

RULES Federal Acquisition Regulation: Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces, 58562-58651 2016-19676 Federal Acquisition Circular 2005-90; Small Entity Compliance Guide, 58652 2016-19677 Federal Acquisition Circular 2005-90; Introduction, 58562 2016-19675
Education Department Education Department NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 58497 2016-20370 Energy Department Energy Department See

Western Area Power Administration

Environmental Protection Environmental Protection Agency RULES Air Quality State Implementation Plans; Approvals and Promulgations: Indiana; RACM Determination for Indiana Portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton 1997 Annual PM2.5 Nonattainment Area, 58402-58405 2016-20312 North Carolina; Regional Haze Progress Report, 58400-58402 2016-20309 Virgin Islands; Sewage Sludge Incinerators; Designated Facilities and Pollutants, 58405-58407 2016-20307 Wyoming; Emission Inventory Rule for 2008 Ozone NAAQS and Revisions to Incorporation by Reference, 58397-58400 2016-20315 Pesticide Tolerances: Natamycin; Exemption, 58407-58410 2016-20409 PROPOSED RULES Air Quality State Implementation Plans; Approvals and Promulgations: Indiana; RACM Determination for Indiana Portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton 1997 Annual PM2.5 Nonattainment Area, 58435 2016-20311 North Dakota; Revisions to Air Pollution Control Rules, 58438-58442 2016-20320 Pennsylvania; Pittsburgh-Beaver Valley; Determination of Attainment by the Attainment Date for the 2008 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards, 58435-58438 2016-20313 Virgin Islands; Sewage Sludge Incinerators; Designated Facilities and Pollutants, 58442 2016-20304 Wyoming; Emission Inventory Rule for 2008 Ozone NAAQS and Revisions to Incorporation by Reference, 58434 2016-20316 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Information Requirements for Boilers and Industrial Furnaces, 58510 2016-20321 Meetings: Local Government Advisory Committee, 58510-58511 2016-20408 Federal Aviation Federal Aviation Administration RULES Class E Airspace; Establishment: Dupree, SD, 58382-58383 2016-20145 Slaton, TX, 58383-58384 2016-20144 Standard Instrument Approach Procedures, and Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle Departure Procedures: Miscellaneous Amendments, 58384-58394 2016-20290 2016-20293 2016-20295 2016-20296 PROPOSED RULES Class E Airspace; Amendment: Levelland, Vernon and Winters, TX, 58417-58419 2016-20152 Marion, Portsmouth, Van Wert and Versailles, OH, 58413-58414 2016-20124 Paragould, AR, 58414-58416 2016-20137 Class E Airspace; Establishment: Silver Springs, NV, 58416-58417 2016-20117 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Anti-Drug Program for Personnel Engaged in Specific Aviation Activities, 58549-58550 2016-20010 Aviation Medical Examiner Program, 58550 2016-20015 Meetings: RTCA Program Management Committee, 58549 2016-20373 Federal Deposit Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation RULES Removal of FDIC Regulations Regarding Fair Credit Reporting Transferred to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau; Correction, 58382 2016-20328 Federal Emergency Federal Emergency Management Agency NOTICES Meetings: National Advisory Council, 58526-58527 2016-20326 Federal Maritime Federal Maritime Commission NOTICES Agreements Filed, 58511 2016-20318 Federal Motor Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration NOTICES Meetings; Sunshine Act, 58550 2016-20492 Financial Crimes Financial Crimes Enforcement Network PROPOSED RULES Customer Identification Programs, Anti-Money Laundering Programs, and Beneficial Ownership Requirements for Banks Lacking a Federal Functional Regulator, 58425-58434 2016-20219 Food and Drug Food and Drug Administration PROPOSED RULES Guidance: Classification of Activities as Harvesting, Packing, Holding, or Manufacturing and Processing for Farms and Facilities, 58421-58422 2016-20301 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Preparing a Claim of Categorical Exclusion or an Environmental Assessment for Submission to the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, 58517-58519 2016-20369 Guidance: Abbreviated New Drug Application Submissions—Refuse to Receive for Lack of Justification of Impurity Limit, 58516-58517 2016-20399 Current Good Manufacturing Practice Requirements for Food for Animals, 58519-58520 2016-20300 Human Food By-Products for Use as Animal Food, 58521-58522 2016-20302 Food and Nutrition Food and Nutrition Service NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 58469-58470 2016-20371 Foreign Trade Foreign-Trade Zones Board NOTICES Production Activities: Carrier InterAmerica Corp., Foreign-Trade Zone 281, Miami, FL, 58472 2016-20327 Forest Forest Service NOTICES Environmental Impact Statements; Availability, etc.: Black Hills National Forest, SD and WY, Black Hills Resilient Landscapes Project, 58470-58472 2016-20382 General Services General Services Administration RULES Federal Acquisition Regulation: Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces, 58562-58651 2016-19676 Federal Acquisition Circular 2005-90; Small Entity Compliance Guide, 58652 2016-19677 Federal Acquisition Circular 2005-90; Introduction, 58562 2016-19675 Health and Human Health and Human Services Department See

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

See

Children and Families Administration

See

Food and Drug Administration

See

National Institutes of Health

Homeland Homeland Security Department See

Coast Guard

See

Federal Emergency Management Agency

See

Transportation Security Administration

See

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

Industry Industry and Security Bureau NOTICES Meetings: President's Export Council Subcommittee on Export Administration, 58472 2016-20335 Interior Interior Department See

Land Management Bureau

International Trade Adm International Trade Administration PROPOSED RULES Modification of Regulations Regarding Basis for Normal Value, 58419-58421 2016-20417 NOTICES Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products from India, Italy, the People's Republic of China, the Republic of Korea, and Taiwan; Correction, 58475-58476 2016-20429 Drawn Stainless Steel Sinks from the People's Republic of China, 58474-58475 2016-20428 Potassium Permanganate from the People's Republic of China, 58476-58477 2016-20423 Meetings: President's Export Council, 58472-58473 2016-20294 U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework Self-Certification, 58473-58474 2016-20421 International Trade Com International Trade Commission NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Miscellaneous Tariff Bill Petition System, 58531-58532 2016-20406 Investigations; Determinations, Modifications, and Rulings, etc.: Certain Inkjet Printers, Printheads, and Ink Cartridges, Components Thereof, and Products Containing the Same, 58532-58533 2016-20331 Certain Resealable Packages with Slider Devices, 58530-58531 2016-20357 Hot-Rolled Carbon Steel Flat Products from Russia, 58531 2016-20334 Labor Department Labor Department See

Mine Safety and Health Administration

See

Occupational Safety and Health Administration

See

Workers Compensation Programs Office

RULES Guidance: Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces, 58654-58768 2016-19678 NOTICES Senior Executive Service; Appointment of Members to the Performance Review Board, 58533 2016-20415
Land Land Management Bureau NOTICES Plats of Survey: California, 58529-58530 2016-20388 Oregon/Washington, 58529 2016-20380 Management Management and Budget Office NOTICES Sequestration Update Report to the President and Congress for Fiscal Year 2017, 58537 2016-20323 Mine Mine Safety and Health Administration PROPOSED RULES Examinations of Working Places in Metal and Nonmetal Mines, 58422-58424 2016-20395 Exposure of Underground Miners to Diesel Exhaust, 58424-58425 2016-20396 NASA National Aeronautics and Space Administration RULES Federal Acquisition Regulation: Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces, 58562-58651 2016-19676 Federal Acquisition Circular 2005-90; Small Entity Compliance Guide, 58652 2016-19677 Federal Acquisition Circular 2005-90; Introduction, 58562 2016-19675 National Archives National Archives and Records Administration NOTICES Records Schedules, 58537-58539 2016-20355 National Highway National Highway Traffic Safety Administration NOTICES Petitions for Decision of Inconsequential Noncompliance: Tireco, Inc., 58550-58553 2016-20330 National Institute National Institutes of Health NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Health Information National Trends Survey V, 58525-58526 2016-20345 Study to Estimate Radiation Doses and Cancer Risks from Radioactive Fallout from the Trinity Nuclear Test, 58522-58523 2016-20344 Meetings: National Cancer Institute, 58524-58525 2016-20346 National Institute of General Medical Sciences, 58523-58524 2016-20348 National Institute on Aging Board of Scientific Counselors, 58523 2016-20347 National Oceanic National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RULES Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic: Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic; South Atlantic Golden Tilefish; Recreational Accountability Measure and Closure, 58411 2016-20412 Snapper-Grouper Resources of the South Atlantic: Trip Limit Reduction, 58411-58412 2016-20414 International Fisheries: Western and Central Pacific Fisheries for Highly Migratory Species; Closure of Purse Seine Fishery in the Effort Limit Area for Purse Seine in 2016, 58410-58411 2016-20420 PROPOSED RULES Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic: Reef Fish Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico; Amendment 45, 58466-58467 2016-20404 Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities: Rehabilitation of the Jetty System at the Mouth of the Columbia River—Jetty A, North Jetty, and South Jetty, in Washington and Oregon, 58443-58466 2016-20018 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Fishery Products Subject to Trade Restrictions Pursuant to Certification under the High Seas Driftnet Fishing Moratorium Protection Act, 58494-58495 2016-20402 Meetings: Permanent Advisory Committee to Advise the U.S. Commissioners to the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission, 58495-58496 2016-20405 Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities: Maintenance, Repair, and Decommissioning of a Liquefied Natural Gas Facility off Massachusetts, 58478-58494 2016-20407 National Science National Science Foundation NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 58539-58540 2016-20359 2016-20367 Nuclear Regulatory Nuclear Regulatory Commission NOTICES Exemptions: South Carolina Electric and Gas Co. and South Carolina Public Service Authority; Virgil C. Summer Nuclear Station, Units 2 and 3, 58540-58542 2016-20393 Occupational Safety Health Adm Occupational Safety and Health Administration NOTICES Meetings: Federal Advisory Council on Occupational Safety and Health, 58533-58535 2016-20358 Advocacy Outreach Office of Advocacy and Outreach NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 58468 2016-20390 Personnel Personnel Management Office RULES Federal Employees Health Benefits Program and Federal Employees Dental and Vision Insurance Program: Excepted Service and Pathways Programs Miscellaneous Clarifications and Corrections, 58381-58382 2016-20186 Postal Service Postal Service NOTICES Privacy Act; Systems of Records, 58542-58544 2016-20189 Presidential Documents Presidential Documents PROCLAMATIONS Special Observances: 100th Anniversary of the National Park Service (Proc. 9475), 58803-58806 2016-20587 Securities Securities and Exchange Commission NOTICES Self-Regulatory Organizations; Proposed Rule Changes: Miami International Securities Exchange LLC, 58770-58801 2016-20213 Social Social Security Administration NOTICES Modifications to the Disability Determination Procedures: Extension of Testing of Some Disability Redesign Features, 58544 2016-20253 State Department State Department NOTICES Meetings: Foreign Affairs Policy Board, 58545 2016-20410 Tennessee Tennessee Valley Authority NOTICES Meetings: Regional Resource Stewardship Council, 58545 2016-20379 Trade Representative Trade Representative, Office of United States NOTICES 2016 Special 301 Out-of-Cycle Review of Notorious Markets, 58545-58547 2016-20325 Hearings: Initiation of the 2016 and 2017 Annual Generalized System of Preferences Product and Country Practices Review, etc., 58547-58549 2016-20054 Transportation Department Transportation Department See

Federal Aviation Administration

See

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

See

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

Security Transportation Security Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Aviation Security Customer Satisfaction Performance Measurement Passenger Survey, 58528-58529 2016-20398 Treasury Treasury Department See

Comptroller of the Currency

See

Financial Crimes Enforcement Network

Immigration U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Candidate Questionnaire, 58527-58528 2016-20392 Veteran Affairs Veterans Affairs Department NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Acquisition Regulation Provision, Caution to Bidder—Bid Envelopes, 58555-58556 2016-20363 Acquisition Regulation Special Notice, 58558 2016-20343 Application for Burial Benefits, 58557 2016-20337 Availability of Educational Licensing and Certification Records, 58559 2016-20365 Certificate of Delivery of Advance Payment and Enrollment, 58559 2016-20340 Inquiry Concerning Applicant for Employment, 58554-58555 2016-20338 Purchase of Shellfish, 58555 2016-20362 Request for Nursing Home Information in Connection with Claim for Aid and Attendance, 58558 2016-20364 Transfer of Scholastic Credit, 58554 2016-20339 Veterans Affairs Acquisition Regulation Service Data Manual, 58557-58558 2016-20342 Veterans Affairs Acquisition Regulation Technical Industry Standards, 58556-58557 2016-20341 Western Western Area Power Administration NOTICES Rate Orders: Desert Southwest Region Transmission, Transmission Losses, Unreserved Use Penalties, and Ancillary Services, 58497-58510 2016-20397 Workers' Workers Compensation Programs Office NOTICES Meetings: Advisory Board on Toxic Substances and Worker Health: Subcommittee on Evidentiary Requirements for Part B Lung Disease, 58535 2016-20418 Advisory Board on Toxic Substances and Worker Health: Subcommittee on Medical Advice; Weighing Medical Evidence, 58535-58536 2016-20416 Advisory Board on Toxic Substances and Worker Health: Subcommittee on the Site Exposure Matrices, 58536-58537 2016-20419 Separate Parts In This Issue Part II Defense Department, 58562-58652 2016-19676 2016-19677 2016-19675 General Services Administration, 58562-58652 2016-19676 2016-19677 2016-19675 National Aeronautics and Space Administration, 58562-58652 2016-19677 2016-19675 2016-19676 Part III Labor Department, 58654-58768 2016-19678 Part IV Securities and Exchange Commission, 58770-58801 2016-20213 Part V Presidential Documents, 58803-58806 2016-20587 Reader Aids

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

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81 165 Thursday, August 25, 2016 Rules and Regulations OFFICE OF PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT 5 CFR Parts 890 and 894 RIN 3206-AM97 Federal Employees Health Benefits Program and Federal Employees Dental and Vision Insurance Program: Excepted Service and Pathways Programs Miscellaneous Clarifications and Corrections AGENCY:

U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

The U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is issuing a final rule to make technical corrections to the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP) and the Federal Employees Dental and Vision Insurance Program (FEDVIP) regulations allowing coverage for participants in the Pathways Programs. The Pathways Programs were created by Executive Order (E.O.) 13562, signed by the President on December 27, 2010, and are designed to enable the Federal Government to compete effectively for students and recent graduates by improving its recruitment efforts through internships and similar programs with Federal agencies.

DATES:

Effective August 25, 2016.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Ronald Brown, Policy Analyst, (202) 606-0004, or by email to [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The Pathways Programs offer clear paths to civil service careers for recent graduates and provide meaningful training, mentoring, and career-development opportunities through internships and similar programs with Federal Government agencies. For more information on the Pathways Programs see the final rule, “Excepted Service, Career and Career-Conditional Employment; and Pathways Programs,” available at 77 FR 28193 (May 11, 2012) (Pathways regulation.) On January 6, 2014, OPM published an interim final regulation updating title 5 Code of Federal Regulations, §§ 890.303 and 894.302, to conform with the Pathways regulation. OPM received one comment not related to the substance of this technical correction. Accordingly, this final regulation adopts the interim final regulation with no changes.

Analysis of and Responses to Public Comments

We received one comment on the interim final rule relating to agency guidance materials.

Comment: One commenter asked if OPM will issue new guidance to Federal agencies concerning the changed scheduling authority for Pathways Programs participants.

Response: OPM is not planning to issue guidance to Federal agencies on this regulation as no substantive policy changes were made. The interim final rule made technical changes to FEHBP and FEDVIP regulations to conform with the final Pathways regulation published on May 11, 2012 (77 FR 28194). The only change to the FEHBP regulation was the title of the schedule appointment authority for Pathways Programs interns. See 5 CFR 890.303(e)(2). In the FEDVIP regulation, the intern programs were renamed. See 5 CFR 894.302(f).

Agencies should continue to refer to the supplementary information published in the aforementioned final rule and the guidance that is on the OPM Web site at: http://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/hiring-authorities/students-recent-graduates/.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

I certify that this regulation will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities because the regulation only affects health and dental and vision insurance benefits of Federal employees and retirees.

Executive Order 12866, Regulatory Review

This rule has been reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget in accordance with Executive Order 12866.

Federalism

We have examined this rule in accordance with Executive Order 13132, Federalism, and have determined that this rule will not have any negative impact on the rights, roles and responsibilities of State, local, or tribal governments.

List of Subjects in 5 CFR Parts 890 and 894

Administrative practice and procedure, Government employees, Health insurance, Retirement.

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

Accordingly, OPM is amending 5 CFR chapter I as follows:

PART 890—FEDERAL EMPLOYEES HEALTH BENEFITS PROGRAM 1. The authority citation for part 890 continues to read as follows: Authority:

5 U.S.C. 8913; Sec. 890.301 also issued under sec. 311 of Pub. L. 111-3, 123 Stat. 64; Sec. 890.111 also issued under section 1622(b) of Pub. L. 104-106, 110 Stat. 521; Sec. 890.112 also issued under section 1 of Pub. L. 110-279, 122 Stat. 2604; Sec. 890.803 also issued under 50 U.S.C. 403p, 22 U.S.C. 4069c and 4069c-1; subpart L also issued under sec. 599C of Pub. L. 101-513, 104 Stat. 2064, as amended; Sec. 890.102 also issued under sections 11202(f), 11232(e), 11246(b) and (c) of Pub. L. 105-33, 111 Stat. 251; and section 721 of Pub. L. 105-261, 112 Stat. 2061; Pub. L. 111-148, as amended by Pub. L. 111-152.

Subpart C—Enrollment 2. In § 890.303, revise paragraph (e)(2) to read as follows:
§ 890.303 Continuation of enrollment.

(e) * * *

(2) However, in the case of an employee who is employed under an OPM approved career-related work-study program under Schedule D of at least one year's duration and who is expected to be in a pay status during not less than one-third of the total period of time from the date of the first appointment to the completion of the work-study program, his/her enrollment continues while he/she is in nonpay status so long as he/she is participating in the work-study program.

PART 894—FEDERAL EMPLOYEES DENTAL AND VISION INSURANCE PROGRAM 3. The authority citation for part 894 continues to read as follows: Authority:

5 U.S.C. 8962; 5 U.S.C. 8992; Subpart C also issued under section 1 of Pub. L. 110-279, 122 Stat. 2604.

Subpart C—Eligibility 4. In § 894.302, paragraph (f) is revised to read as follows:
§ 894.302 What is an excluded position?

(f) Expected to work fewer than six months in each year. Exception: you are eligible if you receive an appointment of at least one year's duration as an Intern under § 213.3402(a) of this chapter. To qualify, you must be expected to be in a pay status for at least one-third of the total period of time from the date of the first appointment to the completion of the work-study program.

[FR Doc. 2016-20186 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6325-63-P
FEDERAL DEPOSIT INSURANCE CORPORATION 12 CFR Part 334 RIN 3064-AE29 Removal of FDIC Regulations Regarding Fair Credit Reporting Transferred to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau AGENCY:

Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

ACTION:

Final rule; correction.

SUMMARY:

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (“FDIC”) is correcting a Final Rule that appeared in the Federal Register on October 28, 2015, regarding removal of certain FDIC regulations regarding Fair Credit Reporting transferred to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in Title X of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.

DATES:

The correction is effective August 25, 2016.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Richard M. Schwartz, Counsel, Legal Division, (202) 898-7424 or [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (“FDIC”) is correcting a Final Rule that appeared in the Federal Register on October 28, 2015 (80 FR 65913), regarding removal of certain FDIC regulations regarding Fair Credit Reporting transferred to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in Title X of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.1 This publication removed and reserved Subparts C and E to 12 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 334, but mistakenly failed to remove and reserve the appendices that applied to those Subparts.

1 Public Law 111-203, 124 Stat. 1376 (2010).

In FR Doc. 2015-27291, appearing on pages 65913 et seq. in the Federal Register of October 28, 2015, the following correction is made:

Authority and Issuance

For the reasons stated in the preamble, the Board of Directors of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation amends 12 CFR part 334 by making the following correcting amendments:

PART 334—FAIR CREDIT REPORTING 1. The authority citation for part 334 continues to read as follows: Authority:

12 U.S.C. 1818, 1819 (Tenth), and 1831p-1; 15 U.S.C. 1681a, 1681b, 1681c, 1681m, 1681s, 1681s-2, 1681s-3, 1681t, 1681w, 6801 et seq., Pub. L. 108-159, 117 Stat. 1952.

Subpart C to Part 334 [Removed and Reserved] 2. Remove and reserve appendix C. Subpart E to Part 334 [Removed and Reserved] 3. Remove and reserve appendix E.

By order of the Board of Directors.

Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. Robert E. Feldman, Executive Secretary.
[FR Doc. 2016-20328 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2015-3599; Airspace Docket No. 15-AGL-14] Establishment of Class E Airspace; Dupree, SD AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

This action establishes Class E en route domestic airspace in the Dupree, SD, area. Controlled airspace is necessary to facilitate vectoring of Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) aircraft under control of Minneapolis Air Route Traffic Control Center (ARTCC). This action enhances the safety and efficiency of IFR operations within the National Airspace System. This action also removes the Federal airways exclusionary language from the regulatory text.

DATES:

Effective 0901 UTC, November 10, 2016. The Director of the Federal Register approves this incorporation by reference action under title 1, Code of Federal Regulations, part 51, subject to the annual revision of FAA Order 7400.9 and publication of conforming amendments.

ADDRESSES:

FAA Order 7400.9Z, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, and subsequent amendments can be viewed on line at http://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/publications/. For further information, you can contact the Airspace Policy Group, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20591; telephone: 202-267-8783. The Order is also available for inspection at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to http://www.archives.gov/federal_register/code_of_federal-regulations/ibr_locations.html.

FAA Order 7400.9, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, is published yearly and effective on September 15.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Raul Garza, Jr., Central Service Center, Operations Support Group, Federal Aviation Administration, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Parkway, Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone: (817) 222-5874.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Authority for This Rulemaking

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

History

On February 17, 2016, the FAA published in the Federal Register a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to establish Class E Airspace in the Dupree, SD area. (81 FR 8027) Docket No. FAA-2015-3599. Interested parties were invited to participate in this rulemaking effort by submitting written comments on the proposal to the FAA. No comments were received. Subsequent to publication, exclusionary language for Federal airways was inadvertently added to the regulatory text.

Availability and Summary of Documents for Incorporation by Reference

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

The Rule

This amendment to Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 71 establishes Class E airspace extending upward from 1,200 feet above the surface in the Dupree, SD area, to facilitate vectoring of IFR aircraft under control of Minneapolis ARTCC. Controlled airspace is needed for the safety and management of IFR operations in the National Airspace System. Exclusionary language for Federal airways in the regulatory text is removed.

Class E airspace designations are published in Paragraph 6006 of FAA Order 7400.9Z, dated August 6, 2015, and effective September 15, 2015, which is incorporated by reference in 14 CFR 71.1. The Class E airspace designations listed in this document will be published subsequently in the Order.

Regulatory Notices and Analyses

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

Environmental Review

The FAA has determined that this action qualifies for categorical exclusion under the National Environmental Policy Act in accordance with FAA Order 1050.1F, “Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures,” paragraph 5-6.5a. This airspace action is not expected to cause any potentially significant environmental impacts, and no extraordinary circumstances exists that warrant preparation of an environmental assessment.

Lists of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 71

Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air).

Adoption of the Amendment

In consideration of the foregoing, the Federal Aviation Administration amends 14 CFR part 71 as follows:

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

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

§ 71.1 [Amended]
2. The incorporation by reference in 14 CFR 71.1 of FAA Order 7400.9Z, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 6, 2015, effective September 15, 2015, is amended as follows: Paragraph 6006 En Route Domestic Airspace Areas AGL SD E6 Dupree, SD [New]

That airspace extending upward from 1,200 feet above the surface within an area bounded by lat. 46°43′39″ N., long. 099°00′09″ W.; to lat. 46°43′12″ N., long. 098°27′11″ W.; to lat. 45°53′47″ N., long. 098°15′19″ W.; to lat. 45°15′09″ N., long. 098°45′49″ W.; to lat. 44°40′45″ N., long. 099°45′58″ W.; to lat. 44°44′16″ N., long. 100°47′46″ W.; to lat. 44°52′34″ N., long. 100°57′29″ W.; to lat. 45°28′56″ N., long. 102°46′15″ W.; to lat. 45°34′49″ N., long. 102°46′44″ W.; to lat. 45°40′17″ N., long. 099°00′09″ W., thence to the point of beginning.

Issued in Fort Worth, TX, on August 15, 2016. Christopher L. Southerland, Manager, Operations Support Group, ATO Central Service Center.
[FR Doc. 2016-20145 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2016-3785; Airspace Docket No. 16-ASW-9] Establishment of Class E Airspace; Slaton, TX AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

This action establishes Class E airspace at Slaton, TX. Controlled airspace is necessary to accommodate new Standard Instrument Approach Procedures developed at Slaton Municipal Airport, for the safety and management of Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) operations at the airport.

DATES:

Effective 0901 UTC, November 10, 2016. The Director of the Federal Register approves this incorporation by reference action under title 1, Code of Federal Regulations, part 51, subject to the annual revision of FAA Order 7400.9 and publication of conforming amendments.

ADDRESSES:

FAA Order 7400.9Z, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, and subsequent amendments can be viewed on line at http://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/publications/. For further information, you can contact the Airspace Policy Group, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20591; telephone: 202-267-8783. The Order is also available for inspection at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of this material at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to http://www.archives.gov/federal_register/code_of_federal-regulations/ibr_locations.html.

FAA Order 7400.9, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, is published yearly and effective on September 15.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Raul Garza, Jr., Central Service Center, Operations Support Group, Federal Aviation Administration, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Parkway, Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone: (817) 222-5874.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Authority for This Rulemaking

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

History

On May 6, 2016, the FAA published in the Federal Register a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to establish Class E Airspace in the Slaton, TX area. (81 FR 27359) FAA-2016-3785. Interested parties were invited to participate in this rulemaking effort by submitting written comments on the proposal to the FAA. No comments were received.

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

Availability and Summary of Documents for Incorporation by Reference

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

The Rule

This amendment to Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 71 establishes Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 7-mile radius of Slaton Municipal Airport, Slaton, TX, to accommodate new standard instrument approach procedures. Controlled airspace is needed for the safety and management of IFR operations at the airport.

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

Regulatory Notices and Analyses

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

Environmental Review

The FAA has determined that this action qualifies for categorical exclusion under the National Environmental Policy Act in accordance with FAA Order 1050.1F, “Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures,” paragraph 5-6.5a. This airspace action is not expected to cause any potentially significant environmental impacts, and no extraordinary circumstances exists that warrant preparation of an environmental assessment.

Lists of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 71

Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air).

Adoption of the Amendment

In consideration of the foregoing, the Federal Aviation Administration amends 14 CFR part 71 as follows:

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

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

§ 71.1 [Amended]
2. The incorporation by reference in 14 CFR 71.1 of FAA Order 7400.9Z, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 6, 2015, effective September 15, 2015, is amended as follows: Paragraph 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward from 700 feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth. ASW TX E5 Slaton, TX [New] Slaton Municipal Airport, TX (Lat. 33°29′07″ N., long. 101°39′42″ W.)

That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 7-mile radius of Slaton Municipal Airport.

Issued in Fort Worth, TX, on August 15, 2016. Christopher L. Southerland, Manager, Operations Support Group, ATO Central Service Center.
[FR Doc. 2016-20144 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 97 [Docket No. 31092; Amdt. No. 3710] 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 August 25, 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 August 25, 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:

Thomas J. Nichols, 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 CFR sections, 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 August 12, 2016. John S. 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.

§§ 97.23, 97.25, 97.27, 97.29, 97.31, 97.33, 97.35 [Amended]
2. Part 97 is amended to read as follows:

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 No. FDC Date Subject 15-Sep-16 NE Omaha Eppley Airfield 6/0889 8/1/16 RNAV (RNP) Z RWY 14R, Orig-A. 15-Sep-16 OK Oklahoma City Sundance 6/1625 8/2/16 VOR RWY 17. Amdt 1D. 15-Sep-16 OK Oklahoma City Sundance 6/1626 8/2/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 17, Amdt 1B. 15-Sep-16 OK Oklahoma City Sundance 6/1627 8/2/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 35, Amdt 1A. 15-Sep-16 MN Madison Lac Qui Parle County 6/2206 8/3/16 NDB RWY 32, Amdt 4A. 15-Sep-16 MN Madison Lac Qui Parle County 6/2207 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 14, Orig-A. 15-Sep-16 MN Madison Lac Qui Parle County 6/2208 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 32, Orig-A. 15-Sep-16 AR Hope Hope Muni 6/2725 7/1/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 16, Orig. 15-Sep-16 IA Storm Lake Storm Lake Muni 6/2927 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 17, Orig-A. 15-Sep-16 IA Storm Lake Storm Lake Muni 6/2930 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 35, Amdt 1. 15-Sep-16 TX Canadian Hemphill County 6/2978 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 22, Amdt 2. 15-Sep-16 IA Boone Boone Muni 6/3301 8/2/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 15, Amdt 1A. 15-Sep-16 NE Hebron Hebron Muni 6/3425 8/2/16 GPS RWY 12, Orig-C. 15-Sep-16 NE Hebron Hebron Muni 6/3426 8/2/16 GPS RWY 30, Orig-B. 15-Sep-16 NE Hebron Hebron Muni 6/3432 8/2/16 NDB RWY 12, Amdt 4B. 15-Sep-16 PA Titusville Titusville 6/3571 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 1, Orig. 15-Sep-16 VT Springfield Hartness State (Springfield) 6/3594 8/3/16 LOC/DME RWY 5, Amdt 4. 15-Sep-16 VT Springfield Hartness State (Springfield) 6/3598 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 5, Orig-A. 15-Sep-16 NY Westhampton Beach Francis S Gabreski 6/3600 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 6, Amdt 2A. 15-Sep-16 NY Westhampton Beach Francis S Gabreski 6/3601 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 24, Amdt 2A. 15-Sep-16 NY Westhampton Beach Francis S Gabreski 6/3603 8/3/16 TACAN RWY 24, Orig-A. 15-Sep-16 NY Westhampton Beach Francis S Gabreski 6/3604 8/3/16 TACAN RWY 6, Orig-A. 15-Sep-16 NY Westhampton Beach Francis S Gabreski 6/3606 8/3/16 ILS OR LOC RWY 24, Amdt 10A. 15-Sep-16 MO Fredericktown A Paul Vance Fredericktown Rgnl 6/3682 8/2/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 19, Amdt 1A. 15-Sep-16 MO Fredericktown A Paul Vance Fredericktown Rgnl 6/3683 8/2/16 VOR RWY 19, Amdt 1A. 15-Sep-16 WI Hayward Sawyer County 6/3704 8/2/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 21, Amdt 1A. 15-Sep-16 WI Hayward Sawyer County 6/3705 8/2/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 3, Orig-C. 15-Sep-16 IN Peru Peru Muni 6/3718 8/2/16 VOR RWY 1, Amdt 8A. 15-Sep-16 WI Phillips Price County 6/3722 8/2/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 6, Orig-A. 15-Sep-16 WI Phillips Price County 6/3723 8/2/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 24, Orig-A. 15-Sep-16 MI Lapeer Dupont-Lapeer 6/3732 8/2/16 VOR-A, Orig. 15-Sep-16 TX Stephenville Stephenville Clark Rgnl 6/3739 8/2/16 VOR/DME-A, Amdt 1. 15-Sep-16 TX Stephenville Stephenville Clark Rgnl 6/3741 8/2/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 14, Orig. 15-Sep-16 TX Stephenville Stephenville Clark Rgnl 6/3742 8/2/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 32, Orig. 15-Sep-16 MN Thief River Falls Thief River Falls Rgnl 6/3882 8/3/16 VOR/DME RWY 13, Amdt 2B. 15-Sep-16 MN Thief River Falls Thief River Falls Rgnl 6/3883 8/3/16 VOR RWY 13, Amdt 9. 15-Sep-16 MN Thief River Falls Thief River Falls Rgnl 6/3884 8/3/16 VOR RWY 31, Amdt 8B. 15-Sep-16 NY Newburgh Stewart Intl 6/4134 8/9/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 27, Amdt 1B. 15-Sep-16 NY Newburgh Stewart Intl 6/4135 8/9/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 34, Amdt 1B. 15-Sep-16 NY Newburgh Stewart Intl 6/4136 8/9/16 ILS OR LOC RWY 27, Amdt 1B. 15-Sep-16 NY Newburgh Stewart Intl 6/4137 8/9/16 ILS OR LOC RWY 9, ILS RWY 9 (SA CAT I), ILS RWY 9 (CAT II & III), Amdt 13B. 15-Sep-16 NY Newburgh Stewart Intl 6/4138 8/9/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 9, Amdt 1B. 15-Sep-16 NY Newburgh Stewart Intl 6/4139 8/9/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 16, Amdt 1A. 15-Sep-16 NY Newburgh Stewart Intl 6/4140 8/9/16 VOR RWY 27, Amdt 5A. 15-Sep-16 NY Newburgh Stewart Intl 6/4142 8/9/16 Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 6. 15-Sep-16 TX Corpus Christi Corpus Christi Intl 6/4158 8/1/16 VOR OR TACAN RWY 18, Amdt 28A. 15-Sep-16 TN Livingston Livingston Muni 6/5091 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 21, Amdt 1. 15-Sep-16 TN Livingston Livingston Muni 6/5092 8/3/16 VOR/DME RWY 21, Amdt 5A. 15-Sep-16 TN Livingston Livingston Muni 6/5094 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 3, Amdt 1A. 15-Sep-16 TN Knoxville Knoxville Downtown Island 6/5095 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 26, Orig-B. 15-Sep-16 WI Cable Cable Union 6/5152 8/1/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 35, Orig. 15-Sep-16 MI Muskegon Muskegon County 6/5170 8/1/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 32, Amdt 2. 15-Sep-16 SD Winner Winner Rgnl 6/5299 8/2/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 13, Orig-A. 15-Sep-16 SD Winner Winner Rgnl 6/5300 8/2/16 VOR-A, Amdt 7A. 15-Sep-16 KS Benton Lloyd Stearman Field 6/5324 8/1/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 17, Orig. 15-Sep-16 WI Stevens Point Stevens Point Muni 6/5437 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 30, Orig. 15-Sep-16 WI Stevens Point Stevens Point Muni 6/5438 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 12, Orig. 15-Sep-16 OH Coshocton Richard Downing 6/5702 8/3/16 Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 1. 15-Sep-16 OK Oklahoma City Will Rogers World 6/6047 8/1/16 ILS OR LOC RWY 17R, Amdt 12A. 15-Sep-16 OK Oklahoma City Will Rogers World 6/6049 8/1/16 ILS OR LOC/DME RWY 35L, Amdt 2A. 15-Sep-16 OK Oklahoma City Will Rogers World 6/6051 8/1/16 ILS OR LOC RWY 17L, Amdt 3A. 15-Sep-16 OK Oklahoma City Will Rogers World 6/6054 8/1/16 ILS OR LOC/DME RWY 35R, ILS RWY 35R (CAT II), ILS RWY 35R (SA CAT I), Amdt 10A. 15-Sep-16 OK Oklahoma City Will Rogers World 6/6055 8/1/16 RNAV (RNP) Z RWY 17L, Amdt 3A. 15-Sep-16 OK Oklahoma City Will Rogers World 6/6056 8/1/16 RNAV (RNP) Z RWY 17R, Amdt 1A. 15-Sep-16 OK Oklahoma City Will Rogers World 6/6057 8/1/16 RNAV (RNP) Z RWY 35L, Amdt 1A. 15-Sep-16 OK Oklahoma City Will Rogers World 6/6058 8/1/16 RNAV (RNP) Z RWY 35R, Amdt 2A. 15-Sep-16 OK Oklahoma City Will Rogers World 6/6060 8/1/16 RNAV (GPS) Y RWY 17R, Amdt 4A. 15-Sep-16 OK Oklahoma City Will Rogers World 6/6061 8/1/16 RNAV (GPS) Y RWY 35L, Amdt 4. 15-Sep-16 OK Oklahoma City Will Rogers World 6/6063 8/1/16 RNAV (GPS) Y RWY 35R, Amdt 3A. 15-Sep-16 OK Oklahoma City Will Rogers World 6/6065 8/1/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 13, Amdt 3A. 15-Sep-16 MI Pellston Pellston Rgnl Airport Of Emmet County 6/6120 7/1/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 5, Orig-A. 15-Sep-16 MI Pellston Pellston Rgnl Airport Of Emmet County 6/6124 7/1/16 VOR RWY 23, Amdt 16A. 15-Sep-16 MI Pellston Pellston Rgnl Airport Of Emmet County 6/6125 7/1/16 ILS OR LOC RWY 32, Amdt 11B. 15-Sep-16 IN New Castle New Castle-Henry Co Muni 6/6134 8/3/16 NDB OR GPS RWY 9, Amdt 5B. 15-Sep-16 MO Cuba Cuba Muni 6/7516 8/2/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 36, Orig-B. 15-Sep-16 MO Cuba Cuba Muni 6/7517 8/2/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 18, Orig-A. 15-Sep-16 TX Georgetown Georgetown Muni 6/7534 8/2/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 11, Orig. 15-Sep-16 TX Georgetown Georgetown Muni 6/7535 8/2/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 29, Orig. 15-Sep-16 MI Midland Jack Barstow 6/7673 7/1/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 24, Amdt 1. 15-Sep-16 WA Spokane Felts Field 6/9348 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS)-A, Amdt 1. 15-Sep-16 WA Spokane Felts Field 6/9349 8/3/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 4L, Amdt 1B. 15-Sep-16 CA Van Nuys Van Nuys 6/9350 8/1/16 VOR-A, Amdt 4B. 15-Sep-16 CA Bishop Bishop 6/9356 8/3/16 Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 3A. 15-Sep-16 CA San Diego Montgomery Field 6/9364 8/1/16 ILS OR LOC RWY 28R, Amdt 4A. 15-Sep-16 CA San Diego Montgomery Field 6/9365 8/1/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 28R, Amdt 1A. 15-Sep-16 PR Aguadilla Rafael Hernandez 6/9687 8/3/16 VOR/DME OR TACAN RWY 26, Orig-B
[FR Doc. 2016-20296 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 97 [Docket No. 31089; Amdt. No. 3707] 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 August 25, 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 August 25, 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:

Thomas J. Nichols, Flight Procedure Standards Branch (AFS-420), Flight Technologies and Programs Divisions, 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 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 CFR sections 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 July 29, 2016. John S. 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 15 September 2016 Troy, AL, Troy Muni Airport at N Kenneth Campbell Field, ILS OR LOC RWY 7, Amdt 11 Troy, AL, Troy Muni Airport at N Kenneth Campbell Field, RNAV (GPS) RWY 7, Amdt 3 Troy, AL, Troy Muni Airport at N Kenneth Campbell Field, RNAV (GPS) RWY 25, Amdt 3 El Monte, CA, San Gabriel Valley, NDB OR GPS-C, Amdt 1A El Monte, CA, San Gabriel Valley, VOR OR GPS-A, Amdt 7A El Monte, CA, San Gabriel Valley, VOR or GPS-B, Amdt 3A Half Moon Bay, CA, Half Moon Bay, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 1 Hanford, CA, Hanford Muni, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 1A Hayward, CA, Hayward Executive, LOC/DME RWY 28L, Amdt 3B Hayward, CA, Hayward Executive, RNAV (GPS) RWY 28L, Amdt 1B Hayward, CA, Hayward Executive, VOR/DME-A, Amdt 3A Livermore, CA, Livermore Muni, RNAV (GPS) RWY 25R, Amdt 1 Napa, CA, Napa County, RNAV (GPS) Z RWY 36L, Amdt 1B Napa, CA, Napa County, VOR RWY 6, Amdt 13B Oakland, CA, Metropolitan Oakland Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 12, ILS RWY 12 (SA CAT I), Amdt 8A Oakland, CA, Metropolitan Oakland Intl, RNAV (GPS) Y RWY 28L, Amdt 4A Oakland, CA, Metropolitan Oakland Intl, RNAV (GPS) Y RWY 30, Amdt 5A Oakland, CA, Metropolitan Oakland Intl, RNAV (RNP) Z RWY 30, Amdt 3A Oakland, CA, Metropolitan Oakland Intl, VOR RWY 10R, Amdt 10A Oakland, CA, Metropolitan Oakland Intl, VOR/DME RWY 28L, Amdt 12A, CANCELED Palm Springs, CA, Bermuda Dunes, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 1 Palm Springs, CA, Jacqueline Cochran Rgnl, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 3 Palo Alto, CA, Palo Alto, VOR/DME RWY 31, Orig-F Paso Robles, CA, Paso Robles Muni, RNAV (GPS) RWY 19, Amdt 1A Paso Robles, CA, Paso Robles Muni, VOR RWY 19, Amdt 4C Paso Robles, CA, Paso Robles Muni, VOR-B, Amdt 3A Petaluma, CA, Petaluma Muni, VOR RWY 29, Orig-D San Jose, CA, Norman Y Mineta San Jose Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 30L, ILS RWY 30L (SA CAT I), ILS RWY 30L (SA CAT II), Amdt 25A Santa Rosa, CA, Charles M Schulz-Sonoma County, ILS OR LOC/DME RWY 32, Amdt 19A Santa Rosa, CA, Charles M Schulz-Sonoma County, RNAV (GPS) RWY 2, Orig-D Santa Rosa, CA, Charles M Schulz-Sonoma County, RNAV (GPS) RWY 32, Amdt 1B Santa Rosa, CA, Charles M Schulz-Sonoma County, VOR/DME RWY 14, Amdt 3B Holyoke, CO, Holyoke, RNAV (GPS) RWY 14, Orig-F Trinidad, CO, Perry Stokes, NDB-A, Amdt 3, CANCELED Trinidad, CO, Perry Stokes, RNAV (GPS) RWY 21, Orig Trinidad, CO, Perry Stokes, RNAV (GPS)-B, Amdt 1, CANCELED Trinidad, CO, Perry Stokes, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 5 Trinidad, CO, Perry Stokes, TRINIDAD ONE Graphic DP Sarasota/Bradenton, FL, Sarasota/Bradenton Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 14, Amdt 6B Sarasota/Bradenton, FL, Sarasota/Bradenton Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 32, Amdt 8B Sarasota/Bradenton, FL, Sarasota/Bradenton Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 4, Amdt 2B Sarasota/Bradenton, FL, Sarasota/Bradenton Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 14, Amdt 3B Sarasota/Bradenton, FL, Sarasota/Bradenton Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 32, Amdt 3B Sarasota/Bradenton, FL, Sarasota/Bradenton Intl, VOR RWY 14, Amdt 18B St Petersburg-Clearwater, FL, St Pete-Clearwater Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 18L, ILS RWY 18L (CAT II), Amdt 22B, CANCELED St Petersburg-Clearwater, FL, St Pete-Clearwater Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 36, Orig St Petersburg-Clearwater, FL, St Pete-Clearwater Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 36R, Amdt 4, CANCELED St Petersburg Clearwater, FL, St Pete-Clearwater Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 18, Orig St Petersburg-Clearwater, FL, St Pete-Clearwater Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 18L, AMDT 1C, CANCELED St Petersburg-Clearwater, FL, St Pete-Clearwater Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 36, Orig St Petersburg-Clearwater, FL, St Pete-Clearwater Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 36R, Amdt 2C, CANCELED St Petersburg-Clearwater, FL, St Pete-Clearwater Intl, VOR RWY 36, Orig St Petersburg-Clearwater, FL, St Pete-Clearwater Intl, VOR/DME RWY 36R, Amdt 2, CANCELED St Petersburg, FL Albert Whitted, RNAV (GPS) RWY 7, Amdt 3D Albany, GA, Southwest Georgia Rgnl, ILS OR LOC RWY 4, Amdt 11A Albany, GA, Southwest Georgia Rgnl, LOC BC RWY 22, Amdt 8A Albany, GA, Southwest Georgia Rgnl, VOR OR TACAN RWY 16, Amdt 27A Gainesville, GA, Lee Gilmer Memorial, ILS OR LOC/DME RWY 5, Orig-A Gainesville, GA, Lee Gilmer Memorial, NDB RWY 5, Amdt 5B Champaign/Urbana, IL, University of Illinois-Willard, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 1 Ulysses, KS, Ulysses, NDB RWY 12, Amdt 4 Ulysses, KS, Ulysses, RNAV (GPS) RWY 12, Amdt 2 Ulysses, KS, Ulysses, RNAV (GPS) RWY 17, Amdt 1B Ulysses, KS, Ulysses, RNAV (GPS) RWY 30, Amdt 1A Ulysses, KS, Ulysses, RNAV (GPS) RWY 35, Amdt 1A Hyannis, MA, Barnstable Muni-Boardman/Polando Field, ILS OR LOC RWY 15, Amdt 5 Hyannis, MA, Barnstable Muni-Boardman/Polando Field, ILS OR LOC RWY 24, Amdt 19 Trenton, MO, Trenton Muni, NDB RWY 18, Amdt 7D Trenton, MO, Trenton Muni, NDB RWY 36, Amdt 10B Baker, MT, Baker Muni, RNAV (GPS) RWY 13, Orig Deer Lodge, MT, Deer Lodge-City-County, RNAV (GPS)-A, Amdt 1 Grand Island, NE., Central Nebraska Rgnl, ILS OR LOC RWY 35, Amdt 9F Grand Island, NE., Central Nebraska Rgnl, LOC/DME BC RWY 17, Amdt 9E Grand Island, NE., Central Nebraska Rgnl, VOR RWY 13, Amdt 19C Grand Island, NE., Central Nebraska Rgnl, VOR RWY 17, Amdt 24B Grand Island, NE., Central Nebraska Rgnl, VOR/DME RWY 31, Amdt 8A Grand Island, NE., Central Nebraska Rgnl, VOR/DME RWY 35, Amdt 15B Harvard, NE., Harvard State, RNAV (GPS) RWY 17, Orig-B Ogdensburg, NY, Ogdensburg Intl, LOC RWY 27, Amdt 4 Ogdensburg, NY, Ogdensburg Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 27, Amdt 1 Ogdensburg, NY, Ogdensburg Intl, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 2 Clinton, OK, Clinton Rgnl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 17, Amdt 3 Clinton, OK, Clinton Rgnl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 35, Amdt 4 Clinton, OK, Clinton Rgnl, VOR/DME-A, Orig, CANCELED Elk City, OK, Elk City Rgnl Business, RNAV (GPS) RWY 17, Amdt 2 Elk City, OK, Elk City Rgnl Business, RNAV (GPS) RWY 35, Amdt 2 Weatherford, OK, Thomas P Stafford, RNAV (GPS) RWY 35, Amdt 3 John Day, OR, Grant County Rgnl/Ogilvie, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 2 Harrisburg, PA, Harrisburg Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 31, Amdt 1C Harrisburg, PA, Harrisburg Intl, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 8A Indiana, PA, Indiana County/Jimmy Stewart Fld/, RNAV (GPS) RWY 11, Orig Indiana, PA, Indiana County/Jimmy Stewart Fld/, RNAV (GPS) RWY 29, Orig Indiana, PA, Indiana County/Jimmy Stewart Fld/, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Orig Indiana, PA, Indiana County/Jimmy Stewart Fld/, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 2, CANCELED Reading, PA, Reading Rgnl/Carl A Spaatz Field, RNAV (GPS) RWY 36, Orig-B Clarksville, TN, Outlaw Field, LOC RWY 35, Amdt 6 Clarksville, TN, Outlaw Field, RNAV (GPS) RWY 17, Amdt 1 Clarksville, TN, Outlaw Field, RNAV (GPS) RWY 35, Amdt 1 Trenton, TN, Gibson County, RNAV (GPS) RWY 1, Amdt 1 Trenton, TN, Gibson County, RNAV (GPS) RWY 19, Amdt 1 Canadian, TX, Hemphill County, RNAV (GPS) RWY 4, Amdt 2 Galveston, TX, Scholes Intl at Galveston, ILS OR LOC RWY 14, Amdt 12B Galveston, TX, Scholes Intl at Galveston, VOR RWY 14, Amdt 4B Wheeler, TX, Wheeler Muni, RNAV (GPS) RWY 17, Orig-A, CANCELED Wheeler, TX, Wheeler Muni, RNAV (GPS) RWY 35, Orig-A, CANCELED Wheeler, TX, Wheeler Muni, RNAV (GPS)-A, Orig Wheeler, TX, Wheeler Muni, RNAV (GPS)-B, Orig Wheeler, TX, Wheeler Muni, VOR/DME-A, Amdt 2, CANCELED Chehalis, WA, Chehalis-Centralia, RNAV (GPS) RWY 16, Amdt 2 La Crosse, WI, La Crosse Rgnl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 18, Orig-D La Crosse, WI, La Crosse Rgnl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 36, Orig-C Hulett, WY, Hulett Muni, RNAV (GPS) RWY 13, Orig
[FR Doc. 2016-20293 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 97 [Docket No. 31091; Amdt. No. 3709] 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 August 25, 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 August 25, 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:

Thomas J. Nichols, Flight Procedure Standards Branch (AFS-420), Flight Technologies and Programs Divisions, 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 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 CFR sections 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 August 12, 2016. John S. 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 15 September 2016 Clanton, AL, Chilton County, NDB OR GPS RWY 26, Orig-A, CANCELED Clanton, AL, Chilton County, RNAV (GPS) RWY 8, Orig Clanton, AL, Chilton County, RNAV (GPS) RWY 26, Orig Clanton, AL, Chilton County, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 1 Palm Springs, CA, Bermuda Dunes, BERMUDA DUNES ONE Graphic DP San Diego/El Cajon, CA, Gillespie Field, LOC-D, Amdt 11C Torrance, CA, Zamperini Field, ILS OR LOC RWY 29R, Amdt 3 Torrance, CA, Zamperini Field, RNAV (GPS) RWY 11L, Amdt 1 Torrance, CA, Zamperini Field, RNAV (GPS) RWY 29R, Amdt 1 Torrance, CA, Zamperini Field, VOR RWY 11L, Amdt 16 Van Nuys, CA, Van Nuys, ILS Z RWY 16R, Amdt 1 Miami, FL, Miami Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 9, Amdt 10 St Petersburg-Clearwater, FL, St Pete-Clearwater Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 18, ILS RWY 18 (SA CAT I), ILS RWY 18 (CAT II), Orig Albany, GA, Southwest Georgia Rgnl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 4, Amdt 1A Albany, GA, Southwest Georgia Rgnl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 16, Amdt 1A Albany, GA, Southwest Georgia Rgnl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 22, Amdt 1A Albany, GA, Southwest Georgia Rgnl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 34, Amdt 2A Lawrenceville, GA, Gwinnett County—Briscoe Field, RNAV (GPS) RWY 25, Orig-D Thomson, GA, Thomson-McDuffie County, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 2 Chicago, IL, Chicago O'Hare Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 14L, ILS RWY 14L (CAT II & III), Amdt 29D, CANCELED Chicago, IL, Chicago O'Hare Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 15, Amdt 30D Chicago, IL, Chicago O'Hare Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 32R, Amdt 21E, CANCELED Chicago, IL, Chicago O'Hare Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 14L, Amdt 1F, CANCELED Chicago, IL, Chicago O'Hare Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 15, Amdt 2D Chicago, IL, Chicago O'Hare Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 32R, Amdt 1B, CANCELED Chicago, IL, Chicago O'Hare Intl, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 20A Nantucket, MA, Nantucket Memorial, ILS OR LOC RWY 6, Amdt 2 Nantucket, MA, Nantucket Memorial, ILS OR LOC RWY 24, Amdt 16 Nantucket, MA, Nantucket Memorial, RNAV (GPS) RWY 6, Amdt 1 Nantucket, MA, Nantucket Memorial, RNAV (GPS) RWY 24, Amdt 1 Battle Creek, MI, W K Kellog, ILS OR LOC RWY 23R, Amdt 19 Battle Creek, MI, W K Kellog, NDB RWY 23R, Amdt 19 Raymond, MS, John Bell Williams, ILS OR LOC RWY 12, Amdt 1C Raymond, MS, John Bell Williams, NDB RWY 12, Amdt 3B, CANCELED Aurora, NE., Aurora Muni—Al Potter Field, VOR-A, Amdt 6B Chappell, NE., Billy G Ray Field, NDB OR GPS RWY 30, Amdt 2B Sidney, NE., Sidney Muni/Lloyd W Carr Field, RNAV (GPS) RWY 13, Amdt 2A Sidney, NE., Sidney Muni/Lloyd W Carr Field, RNAV (GPS) RWY 31, Amdt 2A York, NE., York Muni, NDB RWY 17, Amdt 6A York, NE., York Muni, NDB RWY 35, Amdt 4B Newark, NJ, Newark Liberty Intl, RNAV (GPS) Z RWY 22L, Amdt 2 Newark, NJ, Newark Liberty Intl, RNAV (RNP) Y RWY 22L, Amdt 1 Albuquerque, NM, Double Eagle II, ILS OR LOC RWY 22, Amdt 3 Albuquerque, NM, Double Eagle II, RNAV (GPS) RWY 4, Orig Albuquerque, NM, Double Eagle II, RNAV (GPS) RWY 22, Amdt 1 Newport, OR, Newport Muni, VOR RWY 34, Amdt 2 Harrisburg, PA, Harrisburg Intl, VOR RWY 31, Amdt 2B Highmore, SD, Highmore Muni, RNAV (GPS) RWY 13, Orig Highmore, SD, Highmore Muni, RNAV (GPS) RWY 31, Orig Highmore, SD, Highmore Muni, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Orig Brownsville, TX, Brownsville/South Padre Island Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 13, Orig Brownsville, TX, Brownsville/South Padre Island Intl, ILS OR LOC RWY 13R, Amdt 1B, CANCELED Brownsville, TX, Brownsville/South Padre Island Intl, LOC BC RWY 31, Orig Brownsville, TX, Brownsville/South Padre Island Intl, LOC BC RWY 31L, Amdt 11E, CANCELED Brownsville, TX, Brownsville/South Padre Island Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 13, Orig Brownsville, TX, Brownsville/South Padre Island Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 13R, Amdt 2A, CANCELED Brownsville, TX, Brownsville/South Padre Island Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 17, Orig-A, CANCELED Brownsville, TX, Brownsville/South Padre Island Intl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 18, Orig Brownsville, TX, Brownsville/South Padre Island Intl, VOR/DME RNAV OR GPS RWY 35, Amdt 3A, CANCELED Haskell, TX, Haskell Muni, NDB OR GPS RWY 18, Amdt 2B, CANCELED Haskell, TX, Haskell Muni, RNAV (GPS)-A, ORIG Houston, TX, Ellington, ILS OR LOC RWY 17R, Amdt 6B Houston, TX, George Bush Intercontinental/Houston, ILS OR LOC RWY 27, ILS RWY 27 (SA CAT I), ILS RWY 27 (CAT II), ILS RWY 27 (CAT III), Amdt 11 Houston, TX, George Bush Intercontinental/Houston, RNAV (GPS) Z RWY 27, Amdt 5 Houston, TX, George Bush Intercontinental/Houston, RNAV (RNP) Y RWY 27, Amdt 2 Franklin, VA, Franklin Muni-John Beverly Rose, RNAV (GPS) RWY 9, Amdt 1B Franklin, VA, Franklin Muni-John Beverly Rose, RNAV (GPS) RWY 27, Amdt 1B Franklin, VA, Franklin Muni-John Beverly Rose, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 2A Lawrenceville, VA, Lawrenceville/Brunswick Muni, RNAV (GPS) RWY 18, Orig-A, CANCELED Lawrenceville, VA, Lawrenceville/Brunswick Muni, RNAV (GPS) RWY 36, Orig-A, CANCELED Lawrenceville, VA, Lawrenceville/Brunswick Muni, RNAV (GPS)-A, Orig Lawrenceville, VA, Lawrenceville/Brunswick Muni, RNAV (GPS)-B, Orig West Point, VA, Middle Peninsula Rgnl, LOC RWY 10, Orig West Point, VA, Middle Peninsula Rgnl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 10, Amdt 1A West Point, VA, Middle Peninsula Rgnl, RNAV (GPS) RWY 28, Orig-D West Point, VA, Middle Peninsula Rgnl, VOR-A, Amdt 4A

RESCINDED: On August 4, 2016 (81 FR 51339), the FAA published an Amendment in Docket No. 31085, Amdt No. 3703 to Part 97 of the Federal Aviation Regulations. The following entry, effective September 15, 2016, is hereby rescinded in its entirety:

Arcata/Eureka, CA, Arcata, VOR/DME RWY 1, Amdt 8A, CANCELED Bishop, CA, Bishop, VOR/DME OR GPS-B, Amdt 4B, CANCELED Ruston, LA, Ruston Rgnl, NDB RWY 36, Orig-A, CANCELED Corvallis, OR, Corvallis Muni, Takeoff Minimums and Obstacle DP, Amdt 6A Morgantown, WV, Morgantown Muni-Walter L Bill Hart Fld, VOR-A, Amdt 13, CANCELED

RESCINDED: On August 4, 2016 (81 FR 51332), the FAA published an Amendment in Docket No. 31087, Amdt No. 3705 to Part 97 of the Federal Aviation Regulations. The following entry, effective September 15, 2016, is hereby rescinded in its entirety:

Kokomo, IN, Kokomo Muni, VOR RWY 23, Amdt 20, CANCELED Sidney, MT, Sidney-Richland Muni, NDB RWY 1, Amdt 3, CANCELED
[FR Doc. 2016-20295 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 97 [Docket No. 31090; Amdt. No. 3708] 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 August 25, 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 August 25, 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:

Thomas J. Nichols, 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 CFR sections, 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 July 29, 2016. John S. 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.

§§ 97.23, 97.25, 97.27, 97.29, 97.31, 97.33, 97.35 [Amended]
2. Part 97 is amended to read as follows:

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 No. FDC date Subject 15-Sep-16 OH Port Clinton Erie-Ottawa Intl 6/1559 7/21/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 27, Amdt 1A. 15-Sep-16 OH Port Clinton Erie-Ottawa Intl 6/1560 7/21/16 NDB RWY 27, Amdt 14A. 15-Sep-16 MN Alexandria Chandler Field 6/2704 7/21/16 ILS OR LOC RWY 31, Orig-C. 15-Sep-16 MS Okolona Okolona Muni-Richard Stovall Field 6/3355 7/21/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 18, Amdt 1. 15-Sep-16 MS Okolona Okolona Muni-Richard Stovall Field 6/3390 7/21/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 36, Amdt 1. 15-Sep-16 OH Port Clinton Erie-Ottawa Intl 6/5245 7/21/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 9, Amdt 1. 15-Sep-16 AL Troy Troy Muni Airport At N Kenneth Campbell Field 6/5673 7/21/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 14, Amdt 1. 15-Sep-16 AL Troy Troy Muni Airport At N Kenneth Campbell Field 6/5678 7/21/16 NDB RWY 7, Amdt 12. 15-Sep-16 AL Troy Troy Muni Airport At N Kenneth Campbell Field 6/5681 7/21/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 32, Amdt 1. 15-Sep-16 NC New Bern Coastal Carolina Regional 6/7249 7/21/16 ILS OR LOC RWY 4, Amdt 1. 15-Sep-16 OK Tulsa Richard Lloyd Jones Jr 6/7313 7/21/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 1L, Orig. 15-Sep-16 OK Tulsa Richard Lloyd Jones Jr 6/7314 7/21/16 VOR/DME-A, Amdt 7. 15-Sep-16 IL Moline Quad City Intl 6/8934 7/21/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 31, Amdt 1A. 15-Sep-16 FL Tampa Peter O Knight 6/9473 7/13/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 22, Amdt 2A. 15-Sep-16 FL Tampa Peter O Knight 6/9474 7/13/16 RNAV (GPS) RWY 36, Amdt 2B.
[FR Doc. 2016-20290 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 100 [Docket No. USCG-2016-0711] Special Local Regulation; San Diego Maritime Museum Tall Ship Festival of Sail; San Diego Bay, CA AGENCY:

Coast Guard, DHS.

ACTION:

Notice of enforcement of regulation.

SUMMARY:

The Coast Guard will enforce the special local regulations on the waters of San Diego Bay, California during the San Diego Maritime Museum Tall Ship Festival of Sail from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. from September 2, 2016 to September 4, 2016. These special local regulations are necessary to provide for the safety of the participants, crew, spectators, sponsor vessels, and general users of the waterway. During the enforcement period, persons and vessels are prohibited from anchoring, blocking, loitering, or impeding this regulated parade route and mock gun battle area unless authorized by the Captain of the Port, or his designated representative.

DATES:

The regulations in 33 CFR 100.1101 will be enforced from 9 a.m. through 7 p.m. from September 2, 2016 to September 4, 2016, for Item 15 in Table 1 of Section 100.1101.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

If you have questions about this publication of enforcement, call or email Petty Officer Randolph Pahilanga, Waterways Management, U.S. Coast Guard Sector San Diego, CA; telephone (619) 278-7656, email [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The Coast Guard will enforce the special local regulations in 33 CFR 100.1101 for the San Diego Maritime Museum Tall Ship Festival of Sail in San Diego Bay, CA in 33 CFR 100.1101, Table 1, Item 15 of that section from 9 a.m. until 7 p.m. from September 2, 2016 to September 4, 2016. This enforcement action is being taken to provide for the safety of life on navigable waterways during the parade and subsequent mock gun battles. The Coast Guard's regulation for recurring marine events within the San Diego Captain of the Port Zone identifies the regulated entities for this event. Under the provisions of 33 CFR 100.1101, persons and vessels are prohibited from anchoring, blocking, loitering, or impeding within this regulated parade route and mock gun battle area unless authorized by the Captain of the Port, or his designated representative. The Coast Guard may be assisted by other Federal, State, or local law enforcement agencies in enforcing this regulation.

This document is issued under authority of 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 33 CFR 100.1101. In addition to this document in the Federal Register, the Coast Guard will provide the maritime community with advance notification of this enforcement period via the Local Notice to Mariners, Broadcast Notice to Mariners, and local advertising by the event sponsor.

If the Captain of the Port Sector San Diego or his designated representative determines that the regulated area need not be enforced for the full duration stated on this document, he or she may use a Broadcast Notice to Mariners or other communications coordinated with the event sponsor to grant general permission to enter the regulated area.

Dated: August 2, 2016. J.R. Buzzella, Captain, U.S. Coast Guard, Captain of the Port San Diego.
[FR Doc. 2016-20422 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-04-P
DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 100 [Docket No. USCG-2016-0730] Special Local Regulation; San Diego Bayfair; Mission Bay, San Diego, CA AGENCY:

Coast Guard, DHS.

ACTION:

Notice of enforcement regulation.

SUMMARY:

The Coast Guard will enforce the special local regulations on the waters of Mission Bay, California during the San Diego Bayfair boat racing event from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. from September 16, 2016 to September 18, 2016. These special local regulations are necessary to provide for the safety of the participants, crew, spectators, sponsor vessels, and general users of the waterway. During the enforcement period, persons and vessels are prohibited from anchoring, blocking, loitering, or impeding within this regulated area unless authorized by the Captain of the Port, or his designated representative.

DATES:

The regulations in 33 CFR 100.1101 will be enforced from 7 a.m. through 6 p.m. from September 16, 2016 to September 18, 2016 for Item 12 in Table 1 of Section 100.1101.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

If you have questions about this publication of enforcement, call or email Petty Officer Chelsea Zimmerman, Waterways Management, U.S. Coast Guard Sector San Diego, CA; telephone (619) 278-7656, email [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The Coast Guard will enforce the special local regulations in 33 CFR 100.1101 for the San Diego Bayfair in Mission Bay, CA in 33 CFR 100.1101, Table 1, Item 12 of that section from 7 a.m. until 6 p.m. from September 16, 2016 through September 18, 2016. This enforcement action is being taken to provide for the safety of life on navigable waterways during the races. The Coast Guard's regulation for recurring marine events in the San Diego Captain of the Port Zone identifies the regulated entities for this event. Under the provisions of 33 CFR 100.1101, persons and vessels are prohibited from anchoring, blocking, loitering, or impeding within this regulated area of Mission Bay to include Fiesta Bay, the east side of Vacation Isle, and Crown Point shores unless authorized by the Captain of the Port, or his designated representative. The Coast Guard may be assisted by other Federal, State, or local law enforcement agencies in enforcing this regulation.

This document is issued under authority of 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 33 CFR 100.1101. In addition to this document in the Federal Register, the Coast Guard will provide the maritime community with advance notification of this enforcement period via the Local Notice to Mariners, Broadcast Notice to Mariners, and local advertising by the event sponsor.

If the Captain of the Port Sector San Diego or his designated representative determines that the regulated area need not be enforced for the full duration stated on this document, he or she may use a Broadcast Notice to Mariners or other communications coordinated with the event sponsor to grant general permission to enter the regulated area.

Dated: August 10, 2016. J.R. Buzzella, Captain, U.S. Coast Guard, Captain of the Port San Diego.
[FR Doc. 2016-20426 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-04-P
DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 117 [Docket No. USCG-2016-0831] Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Reynolds Channel, Nassau County, NY 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 Long Beach Bridge, mile 4.7, across Reynolds Channel, at Nassau County, New York. This temporary deviation is necessary to facilitate public safety during a public event, the Annual Fireworks Display.

DATES:

This deviation is effective from 9:30 p.m. on September 2, 2016 to 10:30 p.m. on September 3, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

The docket for this deviation, USCG-2016-0831, 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 Ms. Judy K. Leung-Yee, Project Officer, First Coast Guard District, telephone (212) 514-4330, email [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The bridge owner, Nassau County Department of Public Works, requested this temporary deviation from the normal operating schedule to facilitate a public event, the Annual Fireworks Display.

The Long Beach Bridge, mile 4.7, across Reynolds Channel has a vertical clearance in the closed position of 22 feet at mean high water and 24 feet at mean low water. The existing bridge operating regulations are found at 33 CFR 117.799(g).

Reynolds Channel is transited by commercial and recreational traffic.

Under this temporary deviation, the Long Beach Bridge may remain in the closed position between 9:30 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. on September 2, 2016 (rain date: September 3, 2016 between 9:30 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.).

Vessels able to pass under the bridge in the closed position may do so at anytime. The bridges will not be able to open for emergencies and there are no immediate alternate routes for vessels to pass.

The Coast Guard will also inform the users of the waterways through our Local and Broadcast Notices to Mariners of the change in operating schedule for the bridge so that vessels can arrange their transits to minimize any impact caused by the temporary deviation.

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: August 22, 2016. C.J. Bisignano, Supervisory Bridge Management Specialist, First Coast Guard District.
[FR Doc. 2016-20372 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-04-P
DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 117 [Docket No. USCG-2016-0817] Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Columbia River, Portland, OR and Vancouver, WA 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 Interstate 5 (I-5) Bridges across the Columbia River, mile 106.5, between Portland, Oregon, and Vancouver, Washington. The deviation is necessary to facilitate the movement and safety of pedestrians on the I-5 Bridges. This deviation allows the bridges to remain in the closed-to-navigation position during the Hands Across the Bridge event.

DATES:

This deviation is effective from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on September 5, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

The docket for this deviation, [USCG-2016-0XXX] 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 Mr. Steven Fischer, Bridge Administrator, Thirteenth Coast Guard District; telephone 206-220-7282, email [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The Oregon Department of Transportation has requested that the Interstate 5 (I-5) Bridges across the Columbia River remain closed to vessel traffic to facilitate heavier than normal pedestrian traffic associated with Hands Across the Bridges event. The I-5 Bridges cross the Columbia River at mile 106.5, and provide three designated navigation channels with vertical clearances ranging from 39 to 72 feet above Columbia River Datum 0.0 while the lift spans are in the closed-to-navigation position. The normal operating schedule for the I-5 Bridges is 33 CFR 117.869. This deviation period is from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on September 5, 2016. The deviation allows the lift spans of the I-5 Bridges to remain in the closed-to-navigation position, and need not open for maritime traffic during this period. The bridges shall operate in accordance with 33 CFR 117.869 at all other times. Waterway usage on this part of the Columbia River includes vessels ranging from commercial tug and tow vessels to recreational pleasure craft.

Vessels able to pass under the bridges in the closed positions may do so at anytime. The bridges will be able to open for emergencies and there is no immediate alternate route for vessels to pass. The Coast Guard will also inform the users of the waterways through our Local and Broadcast Notices to Mariners of the change in operating schedule for the bridge so that vessels can arrange their transits to minimize any impact caused by the temporary deviation.

In accordance with 33 CFR 117.35(e), the drawbridges must return to their 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: August 19, 2016. Steven M. Fischer, Bridge Administrator, Thirteenth Coast Guard District.
[FR Doc. 2016-20368 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-04-P
DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 165 [Docket Number USCG-2016-0756] RIN 1625-AA87 Security Zone; U.S. Navy/U.S. Coast Guard Assets Demonstration in Conjunction With Fleet Week San Diego, San Diego Bay; San Diego, CA AGENCY:

Coast Guard, DHS.

ACTION:

Temporary final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Coast Guard is establishing a temporary 750-foot radius security zone on the navigable waters of the U.S. in San Diego Bay, San Diego, CA, in support of Fleet Week San Diego on September 10, 2016. This action is necessary to provide for the safety and security of U.S. Navy and U.S Coast Guard surface and aerial assets, crews, and support personnel who will be performing mission capability and search and rescue demonstrations. Unauthorized persons and vessels will be prohibited from entering into or remaining in the security zone unless authorized by the Captain of the Port San Diego or his designated representative.

DATES:

This rule is effective from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. on September 10, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

To view documents mentioned in this preamble as being available in the docket, go to http://www.regulations.gov, type USCG-2016-0756 in the “SEARCH” box and click “SEARCH.” Click on Open Docket Folder on the line associated with this rule.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

If you have questions on this rule, call or email LT Robert Cole, Waterways Management, U.S. Coast Guard Sector San Diego, Coast Guard; telephone 619-278-7656, email [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Table of Abbreviations CFR Code of Federal Regulations COTP Captain of the Port DHS Department of Homeland Security NPRM Notice of Proposed Rulemaking SMIB Safety Marine Information Broadcast U.S.C. United States Code VHF Very High Frequency II. Background Information and Regulatory History

The Coast Guard is issuing this temporary rule without prior notice and opportunity to comment pursuant to authority under section 4(a) of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) (5 U.S.C. 553(b)). This provision authorizes an agency to issue a rule without prior notice and opportunity to comment when the agency for good cause finds that those procedures are “impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to the public interest.”

We did not publish a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) for this regulation. Under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B), the Coast Guard finds that good cause exists for not publishing a NPRM thirty days in advance of its publication in the Federal Register, because publishing an NPRM would be impracticable. The availability of assets and the desired location of the demonstration could not be confirmed in time to allow for a notice and comment period. Delay in this temporary rule's effective date would be detrimental to the immediate need to ensure the safety and security of U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard assets and personnel.

We are issuing this rule, and under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3), the Coast Guard finds that good cause exists for making it effective less than 30 days after publication in the Federal Register. Delaying the effective date of this rule would be impracticable because of the immediate need to ensure the security of the U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard assets and personnel.

III. Legal Authority and Need for Rule

The legal basis and authorities for this temporary rule are found in 33 U.S.C. 1231, 50 U.S.C. 191; 33 CFR 1.05-1, 6.04-1, 6.04-6, 160.5, and 165.30; and Department of Homeland Security Delegation No. 0170.1, which collectively authorize the Coast Guard to propose, establish, and define regulatory security zones. The Coast Guard is establishing a temporary security zone on the navigable waters of the San Diego Bay to ensure the safety and security of U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard assets and personnel in San Diego, CA, on September 10, 2016.

IV. Discussion of the Rule

The Coast Guard is establishing a temporary security zone that will be enforced from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on September 10, 2016. This security zone will encompass the waters within a 750-foot radius centered at the following coordinate: 32°43′18″ N., 117°12′11″ W. The purpose of the security zone is intended to protect the U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard surface and aerial assets, crews, and support personnel who will be performing mission capability and search and rescues demonstrations in San Diego, CA. Persons and vessels will be prohibited from entering into or remaining in the security zone unless authorized by the COTP San Diego or his designated representative. Prior to the event and during the enforcement of the event, the Coast Guard will issue a SMIB via VHF Channel 16/22A.

V. Regulatory Analyses

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

A. Regulatory Planning and Review

Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess the costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, if regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits. E.O. 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, of reducing costs, of harmonizing rules, and of promoting flexibility. This rule has not been designated a “significant regulatory action,” under E.O. 12866. Accordingly, it has not been reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget. This determination is based on the size, location and limited duration of the security zone. This zone impacts a small designated area of the San Diego bay for a very limited period. Furthermore, vessel traffic can safely transit around the security zone.

B. Impact on Small Entities

The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (RFA), 5 U.S.C. 601-612, as amended, requires federal agencies to consider the potential impact of regulations on small entities during rulemaking. The term “small entities” comprises small businesses, not-for-profit organizations that are independently owned and operated and are not dominant in their fields, and governmental jurisdictions with populations of less than 50,000. The Coast Guard certifies under 5 U.S.C. 605(b) that this rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. This rule will affect the following entities, some of which may be small entities: the owners or operators of vessels intending to transit or anchor in the impacted portion of the San Diego Bay from 11:00 a.m. through 2:00 p.m. on September 10, 2016.

This security zone will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities for the following reasons: Vessel traffic can pass safely around the zone, and the zone will be enforced for a short duration of time. The Coast Guard will issue a SMIB to mariners via VHF Channel 16 and 22A before the security zone is enforced.

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

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

C. Collection of Information

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

D. Federalism

A rule has implications for federalism under Executive Order 13132, Federalism, if it has a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government. We have analyzed this rule under that Order and determined that it is consistent with the fundamental federalism principles and preemption requirements described in E.O. 13132.

Also, this rule does not have tribal implications under Executive Order 13175, Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments, because it does not have a substantial direct effect on one or more Indian tribes, on the relationship between the Federal Government and Indian tribes, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities between the Federal Government and Indian tribes. If you believe this rule has implications for federalism or Indian tribes, please contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section above.

E. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

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

F. Environment

We have analyzed this rule under Department of Homeland Security Management Directive 023-01 and Commandant Instruction M16475.lD, which guide the Coast Guard in complying with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321-4370f), and have determined that this action is one of a category of actions that do not individually or cumulatively have a significant effect on the human environment. This rule involves establishment of a security zone lasting only 3 hours on the navigable waters of San Diego Bay. It is categorically excluded from further review under paragraph 34(g) of Figure 2-1 of the Commandant Instruction. An environmental analysis checklist supporting this determination and a Categorical Exclusion Determination are available in the docket where indicated under ADDRESSES. We seek any comments or information that may lead to the discovery of a significant environmental impact from this rule.

G. Protest Activities

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

List of Subjects in 33 CFR Part 165

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

For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Coast Guard amends 33 CFR part 165 as follows:

PART 165—REGULATED NAVIGATION AREAS AND LIMITED ACCESS AREAS 1. The authority citation for part 165 continues to read as follows: Authority:

33 U.S.C. 1231; 50 U.S.C. 191, 195; 33 CFR 1.05-1, 6.04-1, 6.04-6, 160.5, 165.30; Department of Homeland Security Delegation No. 0170.01.

2. Add § 165.T11-797 to read as follows:
§ 165.T11-797 Security Zone; San Diego Bay; San Diego, CA.

(a) Location. The following area is a security zone: The limits of the security zone will include all the navigable waters within a 750-foot radius centered at the following coordinate: 32°43′18″ N., 117°12′11″ W.

(b) Definitions. The following definition applies to this section: Designated representative means any commissioned, warrant, or petty officer of the Coast Guard on board Coast Guard, Coast Guard Auxiliary, or local, state, or federal law enforcement vessels that have been authorized to act on the behalf of the Captain of the Port.

(c) Regulations. (1) Under the general regulations in 33 CFR 165.33, entry into, or movement within this zone is prohibited unless authorized by the Captain of the Port San Diego or his designated representative.

(2) All persons and vessels shall comply with the instructions of the Coast Guard Captain of the Port or his designated representative.

(3) Upon being hailed by U.S. Coast Guard or designated patrol personnel by siren, radio, flashing light or other means, the operator of a vessel shall proceed as directed.

(4) The Coast Guard may be assisted by other federal, state, or local agencies in patrol and notification of the regulation.

(5) Vessel operators desiring to enter or operate within this security zone shall contact the Captain of the Port or his designated representative via VHF channel 16 to obtain permission to do so.

(d) Enforcement period. This section will be enforced from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on September 10, 2016.

Dated: August 10, 2016. J.R. Buzzella, Captain, U.S. Coast Guard, Captain of the Port San Diego.
[FR Doc. 2016-20432 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-04-P
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R08-OAR-2016-0377; FRL-9951-34-Region 8] Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; State of Wyoming; Emission Inventory Rule for 2008 Ozone NAAQS and Revisions to Incorporation by Reference AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Direct final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is approving State Implementation Plan (SIP) revisions submitted by the State of Wyoming on July 1, 2014. The submittal requests SIP revisions to the State's Incorporation by reference section as well as an administrative change in section numbering. The submittal also includes the addition of a section establishing requirements for the submittal of emission inventories from facilities or sources located in an ozone nonattainment area.

DATES:

This rule is effective on October 24, 2016 without further notice, unless the EPA receives adverse comments by September 26, 2016. If adverse comments are received, the EPA will publish a timely withdrawal of this direct final rule in the Federal Register informing the public that the rule will not take effect.

ADDRESSES:

Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R08-OAR-2016-0377, 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. For additional information on submission of CBI, please see Section II.A below. 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:

Chris Dresser, Air Program, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 8, Mail Code 8P-AR, 1595 Wynkoop Street, Denver, Colorado 80202-1129, (303) 312-6385, [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Why is the EPA using a direct final rule?

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

If the EPA receives adverse comment, we will publish a timely withdrawal in the Federal Register informing the public that this direct final rule will not take effect. We anticipate that we would address all public comments in any subsequent final rule based on the proposed rule. The EPA will consider all comments received, if any, and take appropriate action in accordance with such comments.

II. What should I consider as I prepare my comments for the EPA?

A. Submitting CBI. Do not submit this information to the EPA through www.regulations.gov or email. Clearly mark the part or all of the information that you claim to be CBI. For CBI information in a disk or CD ROM that you mail to the 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.

B. Tips for Preparing Your Comments. When submitting comments, remember to:

• Identify the rulemaking by docket number and other identifying information (subject heading, Federal Register date and page number).

• Follow directions—The agency may ask you to respond to specific questions or organize comments by referencing a Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) part or section number.

• 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.

• Make sure to submit your comments by the comment period deadline identified.

III. Analysis of the State Submittal

In a July 1, 2014 submittal, Wyoming requested revisions affecting the SIP involving Chapter 8, Nonattainment Area Regulations, Section 5, Ozone nonattainment emission inventory rule, and Section 10, Incorporation by reference. Chapter 8, Section 5 of Wyoming's SIP was previously the Incorporation by reference section due to the fact that on August 15, 2013 the EPA approved a revision that reorganized Chapter 8, and added Section 5 (78 FR 49685). In response to the July 1, 2014 submittal, the EPA is now approving a change that will make Section 10 the Incorporation by reference section instead of Section 5. In addition to this administrative change of the Wyoming Incorporation by reference section, the State is seeking to update the language by changing the date of the citation in this Incorporation by reference section from 2011 to 2012. The EPA approves these revisions.

Moreover, since Chapter 8, Section 5 is now vacant, Wyoming is seeking to amend its SIP by adding a new emission inventory provision to Section 5. The Ozone Nonattainment Emission Inventory Rule is a new rule to establish requirements for the submittal of emissions inventories from facilities or sources located in an ozone nonattainment area pursuant to the requirements of the Clean Air Act (CAA), Section 182. The EPA approves this revision.

IV. What action is the EPA taking today?

The EPA is taking direct final action to approve the SIP revisions submitted by the State of Wyoming on July 1, 2014. The EPA is approving the proposed SIP revisions as a direct final action without prior proposal because the agency views the revisions as noncontroversial and anticipates no adverse comments. However, in the Proposed Rules section of today's Federal Register publication, the EPA is publishing a separate document that will serve as the proposal to approve the SIP revisions if adverse comments are filed. This rule will be effective October 24, 2016 without further notice unless the Agency receives adverse comments by September 26, 2016. If the EPA receives adverse comments, the EPA will publish a timely withdrawal in the Federal Register informing the public that the rule will not take effect. The EPA will address all public comments in a subsequent final rule based on the proposed rule. The EPA will not institute a second comment period on this action. Any parties interested in commenting must do so at this time. Please note that if the EPA receives adverse comment on an amendment, paragraph, or section of this rule and if that provision may be severed from the remainder of the rule, the EPA may adopt as final those provisions of the rule that are not the subject of an adverse comment.

V. Incorporation by Reference

In this rule, the EPA is finalizing regulatory text that includes incorporation by reference. In accordance with requirements of 1 CFR 51.5, the EPA is finalizing the incorporation by reference of the Wyoming rules described in the amendments to 40 CFR part 52 set forth later. Therefore, these materials have been approved by the EPA for inclusion in the State Implementation Plan, have been incorporated by reference by the EPA into that plan, are fully federally enforceable under Sections 110 and 113 of the CAA as of the effective date of the final rulemaking of EPA's approval, and will be incorporated by reference by the Director of the Federal Register in the next update to the SIP compilation.1 The EPA has made, and will continue to make, these materials generally available through www.regulations.gov and/or at the EPA Region 8 Office (please contact the person identified in the For Further Information Contact section of this preamble for more information).

1 62 FR 27968 (May 22, 1997).

VI. Statutory and Executive Orders Review

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Under Section 307(b)(1) of the Clean Air Act, petitions for judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by October 24, 2016. Filing a petition for reconsideration by the Administrator of this final rule does not affect the finality of this action for the purposes of judicial review nor does it extend the time within which a petition for judicial review may be filed, and shall not postpone the effectiveness of such rule or action. Parties with objections to this direct final rule are encouraged to file a comment in response to the parallel notice of proposed rulemaking for this action published in the proposed rules section of today's Federal Register, rather than file an immediate petition for judicial review of this direct final rule, so that the EPA can withdraw this direct final rule and address the comment in the proposed rulemaking. This action may not be challenged later in proceedings to enforce its requirements. (See Section 307(b)(2).)

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

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

Authority:

42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

Dated: August 11, 2016. Debra Thomas, Deputy Regional Administrator, Region 8.

40 CFR part 52 is amended to read as follows:

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

42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

Subpart ZZ—Wyoming 2. Section 52.2620, the table in paragraph (c) is amended under “Chapter 08. Non-attainment Area Regulations.” by revising the entry for “Section 05” and by adding, after “Section 05”, a new entry for “Section 10” to read as follows:
§ 52.2620 Identification of plan

(c) * * *

Rule no. Rule title State effective date EPA effective date Final rule citation/date Comments *         *         *         *         *         *         * Chapter 08. Non-attainment Area Regulations *         *         *         *         *         *         * Section 05 Ozone nonattainment emission inventory rule 11/22/2013 10/24/2016. [Insert Federal Register citation]. 8/25/2016 Section 10 Incorporation by reference 11/22/2013 10/24/2016. [Insert Federal Register citation]. 8/25/2016 *         *         *         *         *         *         *
[FR Doc. 2016-20315 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R04-OAR-2015-0449; FRL-9951-25-Region 4] Air Plan Approval; North Carolina; Regional Haze Progress Report AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is approving a State Implementation Plan (SIP) revision submitted by the State of North Carolina through the North Carolina Division of Air Quality (NC DAQ) on May 31, 2013. North Carolina's May 31, 2013, SIP revision (Progress Report) addresses requirements of the Clean Air Act (CAA or Act) and EPA's rules that require each state to submit periodic reports describing progress towards reasonable progress goals (RPGs) established for regional haze and a determination of the adequacy of the state's existing SIP addressing regional haze (regional haze plan). EPA is approving North Carolina's Progress Report on the basis that it addresses the progress report and adequacy determination requirements for the first implementation period for regional haze.

DATES:

This rule will be effective September 26, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket Identification No. EPA-R04-OAR-2015-0449. All documents in the docket are listed on the www.regulations.gov Web site. Although listed in the index, some information may not be publicly available, i.e., Confidential Business Information or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such as copyrighted material, is not placed on the Internet and will be publicly available only in hard copy form. Publicly available docket materials are available either electronically through www.regulations.gov or in hard copy at the Air Regulatory Management Section, Air Planning and Implementation Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. EPA requests that if at all possible, you contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section to schedule your inspection. The Regional Office's official hours of business are Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding Federal holidays.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

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

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background

Under the Regional Haze Rule,1 each state was required to submit its first implementation plan addressing regional haze visibility impairment to EPA no later than December 17, 2007. See 40 CFR 51.308(b). North Carolina submitted its regional haze plan on that date, and like many other states subject to the Clean Air Interstate Rule (CAIR), relied on CAIR to satisfy best available retrofit technology (BART) requirements for emissions of sulfur dioxide (SO2) and nitrogen oxides (NOX) from electric generating units (EGUs) in the State. On June 7, 2012, EPA finalized a limited disapproval of North Carolina's December 17, 2007, regional haze plan submission because of deficiencies arising from the State's reliance on CAIR to satisfy certain regional haze requirements. See 77 FR 33642. In a separate action taken on June 27, 2012, EPA finalized a limited approval of North Carolina's December 17, 2007, regional haze plan submission, as meeting some of the applicable regional haze requirements as set forth in sections 169A and 169B of the CAA and in 40 CFR 51.300-308. See 77 FR 38185. On October 31, 2014, the State submitted a regional haze plan revision to correct the deficiencies identified in the June 27, 2012, limited disapproval by replacing reliance on CAIR with reliance on the State's Clean Smokestacks Act (CSA) as an alternative to NOX and SO2 BART for BART-eligible EGUs formerly subject to CAIR. EPA approved that SIP revision on May 24, 2016, resulting in a full approval of North Carolina's regional haze plan. See 81 FR 32652.

1 Located in 40 CFR part 51, subpart P.

Each state is also required to submit a progress report in the form of a SIP revision every five years that evaluates progress towards the RPGs for each mandatory Class I Federal area within the state and for each mandatory Class I Federal area outside the state which may be affected by emissions from within the state. See 40 CFR 51.308(g). Each state is also required to submit, at the same time as the progress report, a determination of the adequacy of its existing regional haze plan. See 40 CFR 51.308(h). The first progress report was due five years after submittal of the initial regional haze plan.

On May 31, 2013, as required by 40 CFR 51.308(g), NC DAQ submitted to EPA, in the form of a revision to North Carolina's SIP, a report on progress made towards the RPGs for Class I areas in the State and for Class I areas outside the State that are affected by emissions from sources within the State. This submission also includes a negative declaration pursuant to 40 CFR 51.308(h)(1) that the State's regional haze plan is sufficient in meeting the requirements of the Regional Haze Rule and revised RPGs for the five Class I areas within the State based on updated modeling. In a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) published on June 15, 2016 (81 FR 38986), EPA proposed to approve North Carolina's Progress Report on the basis that it satisfies the requirements of 40 CFR 51.308(g) and 51.308(h) now that EPA has fully approved the State's regional haze plan. No comments were received on the June 15, 2016, proposed rulemaking. The details of North Carolina's submittal and the rationale for EPA's actions are further explained in the NPRM. See 81 FR 38986 (June 15, 2016).

II. Final Action

EPA is finalizing approval of North Carolina's Regional Haze Progress Report SIP revision, submitted by the State on May 31, 2013, as meeting the applicable regional haze requirements set forth in 40 CFR 51.308(g) and 51.308(h). EPA also is finalizing approval of the updated RPGs for North Carolina's Class I areas.

III. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

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

• Is not a significant regulatory action subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget under Executive Orders 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011);

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Under section 307(b)(1) of the CAA, petitions for judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by October 24, 2016. Filing a petition for reconsideration by the Administrator of this final rule does not affect the finality of this action for the purposes of judicial review nor does it extend the time within which a petition for judicial review may be filed, and shall not postpone the effectiveness of such rule or action. This action may not be challenged later in proceedings to enforce its requirements. See section 307(b)(2).

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

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

Dated: August 15, 2016. Heather McTeer Toney, Regional Administrator, Region 4.

40 CFR part 52 is amended as follows:

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

42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

Subpart II—North Carolina 2. Section 52.1770(e), is amended by adding an entry for “May 2013 Regional Haze Progress Report” at the end of the table to read as follows:
§ 52.1770 Identification of plan.

(e) * * *

EPA-Approved North Carolina Non-Regulatory Provisions Provision State effective date EPA Approval date Federal Register citation Explanation *         *         *         *         *         *         * May 2013 Regional Haze Progress Report 5/31/2013 8/25/2016 [Insert citation of publication] Includes updated reasonable progress goals for North Carolina's Class I areas.
[FR Doc. 2016-20309 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R05-OAR-2016-0169; FRL-9951-29-Region 5] Air Plan Approval; Indiana; RACM Determination for Indiana Portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton 1997 Annual PM2.5 Nonattainment Area AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Direct final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is approving the reasonably available control measures (RACM) and reasonably available control technology (RACT) analysis that Indiana submitted as part of its attainment plan for the 1997 fine particulate matter (PM2.5) standard, in accordance with Indiana's request dated February 11, 2016. The RACM/RACT analysis addresses RACM and RACT for the Indiana portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton nonattainment area for the 1997 PM2.5 standard. EPA is not acting on the portions of the State Implementation Plan (SIP) submission that are unrelated to RACM/RACT. Other portions of the attainment plan have either been addressed or will be addressed in future rulemaking actions.

DATES:

This direct final rule will be effective October 24, 2016, unless EPA receives adverse comments by September 26, 2016. If adverse comments are received, EPA will publish a timely withdrawal of the direct final rule in the Federal Register informing the public that the rule will not take effect.

ADDRESSES:

Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R05-OAR-2016-0169 at http://www.regulations.gov or via email to [email protected] For comments submitted at Regulations.gov, follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or removed from Regulations.gov. For either manner of submission, 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. 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, please contact the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section. For 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:

Joseph Ko, Environmental Engineer, Attainment, Planning and Maintenance Section, Air Programs Branch (AR-18J), Environmental Protection Agency, Region 5, 77 West Jackson Boulevard, Chicago, Illinois 60604, (312) 886-7947, [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Throughout this document whenever “we,” “us,” or “our” is used, we mean EPA. This supplementary information section is arranged as follows:

I. Background II. What are EPA's actions? III. What is EPA's analysis of the State's RACM submittal? IV. What action is EPA taking? V. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews I. Background

On July 18, 1997, EPA promulgated the first national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) for PM2.5. EPA promulgated an annual standard of 15 micrograms per cubic meter (μg/m3) (based on a 3-year average of annual mean PM2.5 concentrations) and a 24-hour standard of 65 μg/m3 (based on a 3-year average of the 98th percentile of 24-hour concentrations). See 62 FR 38652. On December 17, 2004, based on 2001-2003 monitoring data, EPA designated the Cincinnati-Hamilton OH-KY-IN area (the Cincinnati-Hamilton area) as nonattainment for the annual standard for fine particles, and these designations became effective on April 5, 2005. See 70 FR 944. On July 3, 2008, Indiana requested that EPA redesignate as attainment its portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton area, showing that existing permanent and enforceable controls would provide for timely attainment of the 1997 PM2.5 standard by the attainment deadline of April 5, 2010. On September 29, 2011, based on 2007-2009 monitoring data, EPA made a “clean data determination” and determination of attainment, indicating that the entire area was attaining the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS by its applicable attainment date. See 76 FR 60373. The clean data determination suspended all further planning SIP revision requirements.

As part of its action approving the redesignation of the Indiana and Ohio portions of the Cincinnati-Hamilton area to attainment, published on December 23, 2011, EPA found that the states of Ohio and Indiana had satisfied the remaining applicable requirements, including the requirement to submit an emission inventory in accordance with section 172(c)(3). See 76 FR 80253. The redesignation to attainment was based, in part, on EPA's longstanding interpretation that Subpart 1 nonattainment planning requirements, including RACM, are not “applicable” for purposes of Clean Air Act section 107(d)(3)(E)(ii) and (v) when an area is attaining the NAAQS and, therefore, need not be approved into the SIP before EPA can redesignate the area. See 76 FR 80258.

On July 14, 2015, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit (Sixth Circuit) issued an opinion in Sierra Club v. EPA, 793 F.3d 656 (6th Cir. 2015), vacating EPA's redesignation of the Indiana and Ohio portions of the Cincinnati-Hamilton area to attainment for the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS on the basis that EPA had not approved subpart 1 RACM for the area into the SIP.1 The Court concluded that “a State seeking redesignation `shall provide for the implementation' of RACM/RACT, even if those measures are not strictly necessary to demonstrate attainment with the PM2.5 NAAQS. . . . If a State has not done so, EPA cannot `fully approve[]' the area's SIP, and redesignation to attainment status is improper.” Sierra Club, 793 F.3d at 670.

1 The Court issued its initial decision in the case on March 18, 2015, and subsequently issued an amended opinion on July 14 after appeals for rehearing en banc and panel rehearing had been filed. The amended opinion revised some of the legal aspects of the Court's analysis of the relevant statutory provisions (section 107(d)(3)(E)(ii) and section 172(c)(1)) but the overall holding of the opinion was unaltered. On March 28, 2016, the Supreme Court denied a petition for certiorari from Ohio requesting review of the Sixth Circuit's decision.

EPA is adhering to the Court's precedent within the jurisdiction of the Sixth Circuit, which does not include Indiana. Regardless, on February 11, 2016, Indiana requested that EPA act on the RACM/RACT analysis for its portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton area from the earlier attainment plan SIP revision in order to eliminate any potential concern regarding the effect of the Sixth Circuit decision.

II. What are EPA's actions?

EPA is approving Indiana's requested SIP submission as providing for all reasonably available control measures, including reasonably available control technology, in accordance with the requirements of sections 172(c)(1) and 189(a)(1)(C). More detail on EPA's rationale is provided below.

III. What is EPA's analysis of the State's RACM submittal? a. Subpart 1 and Subpart 4 RACM Requirements

RACM is required under both Subpart 1 and Subpart 4 of Part D of Title I of the CAA. See CAA section 172(c)(1) and section 189(a)(1)(C). Section 172(c)(1) requires that each attainment plan “provide for the implementation of all reasonably available control measures as expeditiously as practicable (including such reductions in emissions from the existing sources in the area as may be obtained through the adoption, at a minimum, of reasonably available control technology), and shall provide for attainment of the national primary ambient air quality standards.” Similar language in section 189(a)(1)(C) requires RACM for PM2.5 plans. EPA's current implementation guidance interprets RACM, including RACT, under section 172(c)(1) as measures that are both reasonably available and necessary to demonstrate attainment as expeditiously as practicable in the nonattainment area. See 40 CFR 51.1010(a).2 A state must adopt, as RACM, measures that are reasonably available considering technical and economic feasibility if, considered collectively, they would advance the attainment date by one year or more. See 40 CFR 51.1010(b). EPA has also proposed implementation policy that applies a similar interpretation to RACM as required under section 189(a)(1)(C).

2 Subpart 1 RACM requirements at 40 CFR 51.1010 were not at issue in the D.C. Circuit's remand of the PM2.5 implementation rule in the January 2013 Natural Resources Defense Council v. EPA decision and are therefore not subject to the Court's remand. Cf. NRDC v. EPA, 571 F.3d 1245, 1252-53 (D.C. Cir. 2009) (upholding a substantially similar interpretation of Subpart 1 RACM in the context of ozone implementation regulations).

The PM2.5 Implementation Rule (72 FR 20586) requires that the Subpart 1 RACM portion of the attainment plan SIP revision include the list of potential measures that a state considered and additional information sufficient to show that the state has met all requirements for the determination of what constitutes RACM in a specific nonattainment area. See 40 CFR 51.1010(a). Any measures that are necessary to meet these requirements that are not already either federally promulgated, part of the SIP, or otherwise creditable in SIPs must be submitted in enforceable form as part of a state's attainment plan SIP revision for the area. As discussed above, a clean data determination suspends the requirement for a PM2.5 nonattainment area to submit an attainment plan SIP revision, including RACM, so long as the area continues to attain the PM2.5 NAAQS. See 40 CFR 51.1004(c).

b. RACM Based Upon Attainment of the NAAQS

EPA is approving the portion of Indiana's July 3, 2008, requested attainment plan SIP revision that addresses Subpart 1 RACM for the State's portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton area on the basis that it is attaining the 1997 Annual PM2.5 NAAQS and, therefore, no additional emission reduction measures beyond the existing measures in the SIP are necessary to demonstrate attainment or would advance the area's attainment by one year or more. As noted above, EPA determined that the area met the standard by the April 5, 2010 attainment date. See 76 FR 60373. Indiana's submission therefore meets the requirements of section 172(c)(1) pursuant to 40 CFR 51.1010. Given the similarity of requirements under Subpart 4, the submission also meets the RACT/RACM requirements of section 189(a)(1)(C).

c. RACM Based Upon the State's Control Evaluation

Additionally, the portion of Indiana's July 3, 2008 requested attainment plan SIP revision that addresses Subpart 1 RACM for the State's portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton area is approvable on the basis that the requested SIP revision demonstrates that no additional reasonably available controls would have advanced the attainment date projected therein.

Indiana determined that existing measures and measures planned for implementation by 2009 would result in the Cincinnati-Hamilton area attaining the 1997 PM2.5 NAAQS by the attainment deadline of April 5, 2010. Air quality modeling conducted by Lake Michigan Air Directors Consortium (LADCO) indicated that the area would attain the annual NAAQS in 2009 based upon projected emissions reductions from sources within the area after 2005 (the base year of the nonattainment emissions inventory). As discussed in Chapter 6.0 of the July 3, 2008 SIP submission, the State considered the following existing federally enforceable measures in projecting the emissions inventory used for the 2009 modeling: Tier 2 vehicle standards; heavy-duty gasoline and diesel highway vehicle standards; large non-road diesel engine standards; non-road spark-ignition engines and recreational engines standards; nitrogen oxides (NOX) SIP call; and the Clean Air Interstate Rule (CAIR). Indiana adopted the NOX SIP Call in 2001, and beginning in 2004, this rule accounted for a reduction of approximately 31% of total NOX emissions in Indiana compared to previous uncontrolled years. Indiana adopted a state rule in response to CAIR in 2006 which included an annual and seasonal NOX trading program, and an annual SO2 trading program.

In addition to the federally enforceable measures mentioned above, Indiana also considered further Federal and statewide control measures that, once implemented, would further reduce emissions, but that were not included in the modeling demonstration. The Portable Fuel Container (Gas Can) Controls, and the Small Non-Road Engine Rules were considered as additional Federal controls that would reduce emissions. The Gas Can Controls Rule was issued on February 26, 2007 (71 FR 15830), and it was expected to significantly reduce volatile organic compounds (VOC) emissions. The Small Non-Road Engine Rule was proposed on April 17, 2007, and it was expected to result in a 70% reduction in hydrocarbon and NOX emissions and a 20% reduction in carbon monoxide from new engines' exhaust, as well as a 70% reduction in evaporative emissions. The following Indiana statewide VOC controls rules were considered: Consumer and Commercial Products Rule (326 IAC 8), Architectural and Industrial Maintenance Coatings Rule (326 IAC 8-14), Automobile Refinishing Operations Rule (326 IAC 8-10), and Stage I Vapor Recovery Rule (326 IAC 8-4).

In Indiana's RACM analysis, which appears in chapter 7.0 of the July 3, 2008, SIP submission, the State discusses its evaluation of sources of PM2.5 and its precursors within the Indiana portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton area and its determination that these sources were meeting Subpart 1 RACM levels of emissions control. As discussed above, a state must show that all Subpart 1 RACM (including RACT for stationary sources) necessary to demonstrate attainment as expeditiously as practicable have been adopted and must consider the cumulative impact of implementing available measures to determine whether a particular emission reduction measure or set of measures is required to be adopted as RACM. Potential measures that are reasonably available considering technical and economic feasibility must be adopted as RACM if, considered collectively, they would advance the attainment date by one year or more.

Based on the emissions inventory and other information, the State identified the categories of sources that should be evaluated for controls. These categories include permitted stationary sources; gasoline dispensing facilities; on-road mobile sources; non-road and stationary internal combustion engines; open burning; and home heating with wood.

Indiana, in conjunction with LADCO, conducted attainment test modeling that showed that the Indiana portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton area would attain the current annual PM2.5 NAAQS by 2009, one year before the attainment date deadline of 2010. Indiana evaluated candidate control measures for feasibility, cost effectiveness, and the ability to implement them in the set time frame. No additional measures were needed to demonstrate attainment in an expeditious fashion, since the conducted attainment test modeling showed that the area would attain the fine particles NAAQS by 2009. Indiana's attainment demonstration was validated by quality assured monitoring data at the end of 2009. Therefore, EPA is approving the existing measures as meeting the requirements of RACM/RACT. See 72 FR 20586.

In addition to Indiana's modeling demonstration of expeditious attainment and confirmatory monitoring data, the primary source for both direct PM2.5 and its precursor emissions for Indiana's portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton area (Tanners Creek power plant owned by American Electric Power) was permanently retired on June 1, 2015. As a result of its retirement, direct PM2.5 and PM2.5 precursor emissions in the Indiana portion of the area have decreased significantly, further improving air quality, above and beyond what Indiana demonstrated as necessary to maintain attainment.

EPA has reviewed the State's RACM/RACT analysis and discussion in Indiana's attainment plan SIP revision, and agrees with the State's conclusion that no other reasonably available measures were available or necessary to attain or advance attainment of the standard.

IV. What action is EPA taking?

EPA is approving the RACM/RACT portion of Indiana's Cincinnati-Hamilton area attainment plan SIP revision as providing adequate RACM/RACT consistent with the provisions of 40 CFR 51.1010(b), because Indiana has demonstrated that no further control measures would advance the attainment date in the area.

We are publishing this action without prior proposal because we view this as a noncontroversial amendment and anticipate no adverse comments. However, in the proposed rules section of this Federal Register publication, we are publishing a separate document that will serve as the proposal to approve the state plan if relevant adverse written comments are filed. This rule will be effective October 24, 2016 without further notice unless we receive relevant adverse written comments by September 26, 2016. If we receive such comments, we will withdraw this action before the effective date by publishing a subsequent document that will withdraw the final action. All public comments received will then be addressed in a subsequent final rule based on the proposed action. EPA will not institute a second comment period. Any parties interested in commenting on this action should do so at this time. Please note that if EPA receives adverse comment on an amendment, paragraph, or section of this rule and if that provision may be severed from the remainder of the rule, EPA may adopt as final those provisions of the rule that are not the subject of an adverse comment. If we do not receive any comments, this action will be effective October 24, 2016.

V. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

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

• Is not a significant regulatory action subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget under Executive Orders 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011);

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Under section 307(b)(1) of the CAA, petitions for judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by October 24, 2016. Filing a petition for reconsideration by the Administrator of this final rule does not affect the finality of this action for the purposes of judicial review nor does it extend the time within which a petition for judicial review may be filed, and shall not postpone the effectiveness of such rule or action. Parties with objections to this direct final rule are encouraged to file a comment in response to the parallel notice of proposed rulemaking for this action published in the proposed rules section of today's Federal Register, rather than file an immediate petition for judicial review of this direct final rule, so that EPA can withdraw this direct final rule and address the comment in the proposed rulemaking. This action may not be challenged later in proceedings to enforce its requirements. (See section 307(b)(2).)

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Incorporation by reference, Intergovernmental relations, Nitrogen dioxide, Particulate matter, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Sulfur oxides.

Dated: August 9, 2016. Robert A. Kaplan, Acting Regional Administrator, Region 5.

40 CFR part 52 is amended as follows:

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

42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

2. Section 52.776 is amended by adding paragraph (y) to read as follows:
§ 52.776 Control strategy: Particulate matter.

(y) Approval-By submittal dated July 3, 2008, Indiana demonstrated satisfaction of the requirements for reasonably available control measures for its portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton OH-KY-IN area.

[FR Doc. 2016-20312 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 62 [EPA-R02-OAR-2016-0088; FRL-9951-24-Region 2] Approval and Promulgation of State Plans for Designated Facilities and Pollutants; Virgin Islands; Sewage Sludge Incinerators AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Direct final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking direct final action to approve the Clean Air Act (CAA) section 111(d)/129 negative declaration for the Government of the United States Virgin Islands, for existing sewage sludge incinerator (SSI) units. This negative declaration certifies that existing SSI units subject to sections 111(d) and 129 of the CAA do not exist within the jurisdiction of United States Virgin Islands. The EPA is accepting the negative declaration in accordance with the requirements of the CAA.

DATES:

This direct final rule will be effective October 24, 2016, without further notice, unless the EPA receives adverse comment by September 26, 2016. If EPA receives adverse comment, we will publish a timely withdrawal of the direct final rule in the Federal Register informing the public that the rule will not take effect.

ADDRESSES:

Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R02-OAR-016-0088), to 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:

Edward J. Linky, Environmental Protection Agency, Air Programs Branch, 290 Broadway, New York, New York 10007-1866 at 212-637-3764 or by email at [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

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

I. Background II. Analysis of State Submittal III. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews I. Background

The Clean Air Act (CAA) requires that state 1 regulatory agencies implement the emission guidelines and compliance times using a state plan developed under sections 111(d) and 129 of the CAA.

1 Section 302(d) of the CAA includes the Virgin Islands in the definition of the term “State.”

The general provisions for the submittal and approval of state plans are codified in 40 CFR part 60, subpart B and 40 CFR part 62, subpart A. Section 111(d) establishes general requirements and procedures on state plan submittals for the control of designated pollutants.

Section 129 requires emission guidelines to be promulgated for all categories of solid waste incineration units, including SSI units. Section 129 mandates that all plan requirements be at least as protective and restrictive as the promulgated emission guidelines. This includes fixed final compliance dates, fixed compliance schedules, and Title V permitting requirements for all affected sources. Section 129 also requires that state plans be submitted to the EPA within one year after the EPA's promulgation of the emission guidelines and compliance times.

States have options other than submitting a state plan in order to fulfill their obligations under CAA sections 111(d) and 129. If a State does not have any existing Sewage Sludge Incineration (SSI) units for the relevant emissions guidelines, a letter can be submitted certifying that no such units exist within the State (i.e., negative declaration) in lieu of a state plan.

The negative declaration exempts the State from the requirements of subpart B that would otherwise require the submittal of a CAA section 111(d)/129 plan.

On March 21, 2011 (76 FR 15372), the EPA established emission guidelines and compliance times for existing SSI units. The emission guidelines and compliance times are codified at 40 CFR 60, subpart MMMM.

In order to fulfill obligations under CAA sections 111(d) and 129, the Government of the United States Virgin Islands (USVI) Department of Planning and Natural Resources (DPNR) submitted a negative declaration letter to the EPA on December 1, 2015. As the USVI-DPNR has certified by letter that no SSI units exist, the submittal of this declaration exempts the Territory from the requirement to submit a state plan for existing SSI units.

II. Analysis of State Submittal

In this Direct Final action, the EPA is amending part 62 to reflect receipt of the negative declaration letter from the USVI-DPNR, certifying that there are no existing SSI units subject to 40 CFR part 60, subpart MMMM, in accordance with section 111(d) of the CAA.

If a designated facility (i.e., existing SSI unit) is later found within USVI-DPNR's jurisdiction after publication of this Federal Register action, then the overlooked facility will become subject to the requirements of the Federal plan for that designated facility, including the compliance schedule. The Federal plan will no longer apply, if we subsequently receive and approve the section 111(d)/129 plan from the jurisdiction with the overlooked facility.

The EPA is publishing this direct final rule without a prior proposed rule because we view this as a noncontroversial action and anticipate no adverse comment. However, in the “Proposed Rules” section of this Federal Register, we are publishing a separate document that will serve as the proposed rule to approve the negative declaration if adverse comments are received on this direct final rule. We will not institute a second comment period on this action. Any parties interested in commenting must do so at this time. For further information about commenting on this rule, see the ADDRESSES section of this document. If the EPA receives adverse comment, we will publish a timely withdrawal in the Federal Register informing the public that this direct final rule will not take effect. We will address all public comments in any subsequent final rule based on the proposed rule.

III. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

Under the CAA, the Administrator is required to approve a 111(d)/129 plan submission that complies with the provisions of the Act and applicable Federal regulations. 40 CFR 62.04.

Thus, in reviewing 111(d)/129 plan submissions, the EPA's role is to approve state choices, provided that they meet the criteria of the CAA. Accordingly, this action merely approves state law as meeting Federal requirements and does not impose additional requirements beyond those imposed by state law. For that reason, this action:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

This action does not have tribal implications as specified by Executive Order 13175. The section 111(d)/129 plan is not approved to apply on any Indian reservation land or in any other area where the EPA or an Indian tribe has demonstrated that a tribe has jurisdiction. Thus, Executive Order 13175 does not apply to this section.

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

Under section 307(b)(1) of the Clean Air Act, petitions for judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by October 24, 2016.

Filing a petition for reconsideration by the Administrator of this final rule does not affect the finality of this action for the purposes of judicial review nor does it extend the time within which a petition for judicial review may be filed, and shall not postpone the effectiveness of such rule or action. This action may not be challenged later in proceedings to enforce its requirements. (See section 307(b)(2).)

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 62

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

Dated: August 8, 2016. Judith A. Enck, Regional Administrator, Region 2.

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

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

42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

Subpart CCC—Virgin Islands 2. Add an undesignated center heading and § 62.13357 to subpart CCC to read as follows: Air Emissions From Existing Sewage Sludge Incineration Units Constructed on or Before October 14, 2010
§ 62.13357 Identification of plan—negative declaration.

Letter from the Virgin Islands Department of Planning and Natural Resources, submitted December 1, 2015 to EPA Regional Administrator Judith A. Enck, certifying that there are no existing Sewage Sludge Incinerator units in the Territory of the United States Virgin Islands subject to 40 CFR part 60, subpart MMMM.

[FR Doc. 2016-20307 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 180 [EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0811; FRL-9949-03] Natamycin; Exemption From the Requirement of a Tolerance AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

This regulation establishes an exemption from the requirement of a tolerance for residues of the biochemical pesticide natamycin [6,11,28-Trioxatricyclo [22.3.1.05′7 ]octacosa-8,14,16,18,20-pentaene-25-carboxylic acid, 22-[(3-amino-3,6-dideoxy-p-Dmannopyranosyl)oxy]-1,3,26-trihydroxy-12-methyl-10-oxo-, (1R,3S,5R,7R,8E,12R,14E,16E,18E,20E, 22R,24S,25R,26S)-] in or on citrus, pome, stone fruit crop groups, avocado, kiwi, mango and pomegranates when used in accordance with label directions and good agricultural practices. DSM Food Specialties, B.V., P.O. Box 1, 2600 MA Delft, The Netherlands (c/o Keller and Heckman, LLP, 1001 G St. NW., Washington, DC 20001) submitted a petition to EPA under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA), requesting an exemption from the requirement of a tolerance. This regulation eliminates the need to establish a maximum permissible level for residues of natamycin in or on citrus, pome, stone fruit crop groups, avocado, kiwi, mango and pomegranate when used in accordance with label directions and good agricultural practices.

DATES:

This regulation is effective August 25, 2016. Objections and requests for hearings must be received on or before October 24, 2016, and must be filed in accordance with the instructions provided in 40 CFR part 178 (see also Unit I.C. of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION).

ADDRESSES:

The docket for this action, identified by docket identification (ID) number EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0811, is available at http://www.regulations.gov or at the Office of Pesticide Programs Regulatory Public Docket (OPP Docket) in the Environmental Protection Agency Docket Center (EPA/DC), West William Jefferson Clinton Bldg., Rm. 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001. The Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The telephone number for the Public Reading Room is (202) 566-1744, and the telephone number for the OPP Docket is (703) 305-5805. Please review the visitor instructions and additional information about the docket available at http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Robert McNally, Biopesticides and Pollution Prevention Division (7511P), Office of Pesticide Programs, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001; main telephone number: (703) 305-7090; email address: [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. General Information A. Does this action apply to me?

You may be potentially affected by this action if you are an agricultural producer, food manufacturer, or pesticide manufacturer. The following list of North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS) codes is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather provides a guide to help readers determine whether this document applies to them. Potentially affected entities may include:

• Crop production (NAICS code 111).

• Animal production (NAICS code 112).

• Food manufacturing (NAICS code 311).

• Pesticide manufacturing (NAICS code 32532).

B. How can I get electronic access to other related information?

You may access a frequently updated electronic version of 40 CFR part 180 through the Government Printing Office's e-CFR site at http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?&c=ecfr&tpl=/ecfrbrowse/Title40/40tab_02.tpl.

C. How can I file an objection or hearing request?

Under FFDCA section 408(g), 21 U.S.C. 346a, any person may file an objection to any aspect of this regulation and may also request a hearing on those objections. You must file your objection or request a hearing on this regulation in accordance with the instructions provided in 40 CFR part 178. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, you must identify docket ID number EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0811 in the subject line on the first page of your submission. All objections and requests for a hearing must be in writing, and must be received by the Hearing Clerk on or before October 24, 2016. Addresses for mail and hand delivery of objections and hearing requests are provided in 40 CFR 178.25(b).

In addition to filing an objection or hearing request with the Hearing Clerk as described in 40 CFR part 178, please submit a copy of the filing (excluding any Confidential Business Information (CBI)) for inclusion in the public docket. Information not marked confidential pursuant to 40 CFR part 2 may be disclosed publicly by EPA without prior notice. Submit the non-CBI copy of your objection or hearing request, identified by docket ID number EPA-HQ-OPP-2015-0811 by one of the following methods:

Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be CBI or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute.

Mail: OPP Docket, Environmental Protection Agency Docket Center (EPA/DC), (28221T), 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001.

Hand Delivery: To make special arrangements for hand delivery or delivery of boxed information, please follow the instructions at http://www.epa.gov/dockets/contacts.html.

Additional instructions on commenting or visiting the docket, along with more information about dockets generally, is available at http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

II. Background and Statutory Findings

In the Federal Register of April 25, 2016 (81 FR 24044) (FRL-9944-86), EPA issued a document pursuant to FFDCA section 408(d)(3), 21 U.S.C. 346a(d)(3), announcing the filing of a pesticide tolerance petition (PP 5F8407) by Keller and Heckman, LLP, 1001 G St. NW., Washington, DC 2001 on behalf of DSM Food Specialties, B.V., P.O. Box 1, 2600 MA Delft, The Netherlands. The petition requested that 40 CFR part 180 be amended by establishing an exemption from the requirement of a tolerance for residues of natamycin in or on citrus, pome, stone fruit crop groups, avocado, kiwi, mango, and pomegranates, when used in facilities as a post-harvest fungistat to control certain fungal diseases. That document referenced a summary of the petition prepared by the petitioner, DSM Food Specialties, which is available in the docket, http://www.regulations.gov. There were no comments received in response to the notice of filing.

Section 408(c)(2)(A)(i) of FFDCA allows EPA to establish an exemption from the requirement for a tolerance (the legal limit for a pesticide chemical residue in or on a food) only if EPA determines that the exemption is “safe.” Section 408(c)(2)(A)(ii) of FFDCA defines “safe” to mean that “there is a reasonable certainty that no harm will result from aggregate exposure to the pesticide chemical residue, including all anticipated dietary exposures and all other exposures for which there is reliable information.” This includes exposure through drinking water and in residential settings, but does not include occupational exposure. Pursuant to FFDCA section 408(c)(2)(B), in establishing or maintaining in effect an exemption from the requirement of a tolerance, EPA must take into account the factors set forth in FFDCA section 408(b)(2)(C), which require EPA to give special consideration to exposure of infants and children to the pesticide chemical residue in establishing a tolerance and to “ensure that there is a reasonable certainty that no harm will result to infants and children from aggregate exposure to the pesticide chemical residue. . . . ”Additionally, FFDCA section 408(b)(2)(D) requires that the Agency consider “available information concerning the cumulative effects of a particular pesticide's residues” and “other substances that have a common mechanism of toxicity.”

EPA performs a number of analyses to determine the risks from aggregate exposure to pesticide residues. First, EPA determines the toxicity of pesticides. Second, EPA examines exposure to the pesticide through food, drinking water, and through other exposures that occur as a result of pesticide use in residential settings.

III. Toxicological Profile

Consistent with FFDCA section 408(b)(2)(D), EPA has reviewed the available scientific data and other relevant information in support of this action and considered its validity, completeness and reliability, and the relationship of this information to human risk. EPA has also considered available information concerning the variability of the sensitivities of major identifiable subgroups of consumers, including infants and children.

A. Overview of Natamycin

Natamycin is a naturally occurring compound derived from the common soil microorganisms Streptomyces natalensis, Streptomyces lydicus, and Streptomyces chattanoogensis. Natamycin was originally discovered in Streptomyces natalensis in South Africa in the early 1950s, and was subsequently discovered to also occur naturally in North America in Streptomyces lydicus and Streptomyces chattanoogensis. It is commercially produced by a submerged oxygen-based fermentation of Streptomyces natalensis, Streptomyces lydicus, or Streptomyces chattanoogensis. Natamycin has been used as a food preservative worldwide for over 40 years and is approved as a food additive/preservative by the European Union, the World Health Organization, and individual countries including New Zealand and Australia for use as a fungistat to suppress mold on cheese, meats and sausage. In the United States, natamycin is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a direct food additive/preservative for the inhibition of mold and yeast on the surface of cheeses (21 CFR 172.155) and as an additive to the feed and drinking water of broiler chickens to retard the growth of specific molds (21 CFR 573.685). Natamycin is also FDA approved for use as a treatment to suppress fungal eye infections such as blepharitis, conjunctivitis, and keratitis.

As a biochemical pesticide active ingredient, natamycin is already approved for use as a fungistat to prevent and control the germination of mold and yeast spores in the growth media of mushrooms produced in enclosed mushroom production facilities (77 FR 29543), and to control fungal growth post-harvest on pineapples treated indoors (79 FR 75068). Natamycin has a non-toxic mode of action, has no effects on fungal mycelia, and development of antibiotic resistance to natamycin has not been reported during its entire history of use. See the document entitled, “Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA) Considerations for Natamycin” (June 16, 2016), available in the docket for this action.

B. Biochemical Pesticide Toxicology Data Requirements

All applicable mammalian toxicology data requirements supporting the petition to amend the existing tolerance exemption by adding use as a fungicide post-harvest, indoors, on citrus, pome, stone fruit crop groups, avocado, kiwi, mango, and pomegranates have been fulfilled. No toxic endpoints were established, and no significant toxicological effects were observed in any of the acute toxicity studies. In addition, studies submitted indicate that natamycin is not genotoxic, has no subchronic toxic effects, and is not a developmental toxicant. There are no known effects on endocrine systems via oral, dermal, or inhalation routes of exposure. For a summary of the data upon which EPA relied, and its human health risk assessment based on that data, please refer to the document entitled, “Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA) Considerations for Natamycin” (June 16, 2016). This document, as well as other relevant information, is available in the docket for this action as described under ADDRESSES.

IV. Aggregate Exposures

In examining aggregate exposure, FFDCA section 408 directs EPA to consider available information concerning exposures from the pesticide residue in food and all other non-occupational exposures, including drinking water from ground water or surface water and exposure through pesticide use in gardens, lawns, or buildings (residential and other indoor uses).

A. Dietary Exposure

The proposed use patterns may results in dietary exposure to natamycin, however, exposure is expected to be insignificant (see document entitled, “Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA) Considerations for Natamycin” (June 16, 2016), available in the docket for this action. No significant exposure via drinking water is expected; natamycin is applied indoors only. Some dietary exposure to natamycin might occur through other nonpesticidal sources as a result of its use as a food additive/preservative. Should exposure occur, however, minimal to no risk is expected for the general population, including infants and children, due to the low toxicity of natamycin as demonstrated in the data submitted and evaluated by the Agency, as fully explained in the document entitled, “Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA) Considerations for Natamycin” (June 16, 2016), available in the docket for this action.

B. Other Non-Occupational Exposure

Other non-occupational exposure (other than dietary) from pesticidal use is not expected because natamycin is not approved for residential uses. The active ingredient is applied directly to commodities and degrades rapidly. There may be some exposure to natamycin as a result of its use as treatment of infections, but minimal to no risk is expected for the general population, including infants and children, due to the low toxicity of natamycin as demonstrated in the data submitted and evaluated by the Agency, as fully explained in the document entitled, “Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA) Considerations for Natamycin” (June 16, 2016), available in the docket for this action.

V. Cumulative Effects From Substances With a Common Mechanism of Toxicity

Section 408(b)(2)(D)(v) of FFDCA requires that, when considering whether to establish, modify, or revoke a tolerance, the Agency consider “available information” concerning the cumulative effects of a particular pesticide's residues and “other substances that have a common mechanism of toxicity.”

EPA has not found natamycin to share a common mechanism of toxicity with any other substances, and natamycin does not appear to produce a toxic metabolite produced by other substances. For the purposes of this tolerance action, therefore, EPA has assumed that natamycin does not have a common mechanism of toxicity with other substances. For information regarding EPA's efforts to determine which chemicals have a common mechanism of toxicity and to evaluate the cumulative effects of such chemicals, see EPA's Web site at http://www.epa.gov/pesticides/cumulative.

VI. Determination of Safety for U.S. Population, Infants, and Children

FFDCA section 408(b)(2)(C) provides that, in considering the establishment of a tolerance or tolerance exemption for a pesticide chemical residue, EPA shall assess the available information about consumption patterns among infants and children, special susceptibly of infants and children to pesticide chemical residues, and the cumulative effects on infants and children of the residues and other substances with a common mechanism of toxicity. In addition, FFDCA section 408(b)(2)(C) provides that EPA shall apply an additional tenfold (10X) margin of safety for infants and children in the case of threshold effects to account for prenatal and postnatal toxicity and the completeness of the database on toxicity and exposure unless EPA determines that a different margin of safety will be safe for infants and children. This additional margin of safety is commonly referred to as the Food Quality Protection Act (FQPA) Safety Factor. In applying this provision, EPA either retains the default value of 10X, or uses a different additional or no safety factor when reliable data are available to support a different additional or no safety factor.

As part of its qualitative assessment, EPA evaluated the available toxicity and exposure data for natamycin and considered it validity, completeness, and reliability, as well as the relationship of this information to human risk. EPA considers the toxicity database to be complete and has identified no residual uncertainty with regard to prenatal and postnatal toxicity or exposure. No hazard was identified based on the available studies, as fully explained in the document entitled, “Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA) Considerations for Natamycin” (June 16, 2016), available in the docket for this action. Based upon its evaluation, EPA concludes that there are no threshold effects of concern to infants, children, or adults when natamycin is applied to mushrooms, in enclosed mushroom production facilities, and on pineapples, citrus, pome, stone fruit crop groups, avocado, kiwi, mango and pomegranates when used in accordance with label directions and good agricultural practices. As a result, EPA concludes that no additional margin of exposure (safety) is necessary.

VII. Other Considerations

An analytical method is not required for enforcement purposes since the Agency is establishing an exemption from the requirement of a tolerance without any numerical limitation. Further, residues are not expected on any other crops because natamycin will only be applied indoors to these particular crops.

VIII. Conclusions

Based on its assessment of natamycin, EPA concludes that there is a reasonable certainty that no harm will result to the general population, or to infants and children from aggregate exposure to natamycin. Therefore, an amendment to the exemption of a tolerance is established for residues of natamycin in or on citrus, pome, stone fruit crop groups, avocado, kiwi, mango and pomegranates.

The Agency is issuing the exemption for residues of natamycin in or on citrus, pome, stone fruit crop groups, avocado, kiwi, mango and pomegranates instead of limiting this exemption to post-harvest indoor applications to citrus, pome, stone fruit crop groups, avocado, kiwi, mango and pomegranates because the restrictions are not relevant to the FFDCA safety finding for natamycin. Those limitations are related to the use of the pesticide and regulated under FIFRA.

IX. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

This final rule establishes a tolerance under FFDCA section 408(d) in response to a petition submitted to the Agency. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has exempted these types of actions from review under Executive Order 12866, entitled “Regulatory Planning and Review” (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993). Because this action has been exempted from review under Executive Order 12866, this action is not subject to Executive Order 13211, entitled “Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use” (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001) or Executive Order 13045, entitled “Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks” (62 FR 19885, April 23, 1997). This action does not contain any information collections subject to OMB approval under the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA), 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq., nor does it require any special considerations under Executive Order 12898, entitled “Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations” (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994).

Since tolerances and exemptions that are established on the basis of a petition under FFDCA section 408(d), such as the tolerance in this final rule, do not require the issuance of a proposed rule, the requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.), do not apply.

This final rule directly regulates growers, food processors, food handlers, and food retailers, not States or tribes, nor does this action alter the relationships or distribution of power and responsibilities established by Congress in the preemption provisions of FFDCA section 408(n)(4). As such, the Agency has determined that this action will not have a substantial direct effect on States or tribal governments, on the relationship between the national government and the States or tribal governments, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government or between the Federal Government and Indian tribes. Thus, the Agency has determined that Executive Order 13132, entitled “Federalism” (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999) and Executive Order 13175, entitled “Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments” (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000) do not apply to this action. In addition, this action does not impose any enforceable duty or contain any unfunded mandate as described under Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) (2 U.S.C. 1501 et seq.).

This action does not involve any technical standards that would require Agency consideration of voluntary consensus standards pursuant to section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (NTTAA) (15 U.S.C. 272 note).

X. Congressional Review Act

Pursuant to the Congressional Review Act (5 U.S.C. 801 et seq.), EPA will submit a report containing this rule and other required information to the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, and the Comptroller General of the United States prior to publication of the rule in the Federal Register. This action is not a “major rule” as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2).

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 180

Environmental protection, Administrative practice and procedure, Agricultural commodities, Pesticides and pests, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

Dated: July 19, 2016. Robert C. McNally, Director, Biopesticides and Pollution Prevention Division, Office of Pesticide Programs.

Therefore, 40 CFR chapter I is amended as follows:

PART 180—[AMENDED] 1. The authority citation for part 180 continues to read as follows: Authority:

21 U.S.C. 321(q), 346a and 371.

2. Revise § 180.1315 to read as follows:
§ 180.1315 Natamycin; exemption from the requirement of a tolerance.

An exemption from the requirement of a tolerance is established for the residues of natamycin in or on mushrooms, pineapples, citrus, pome, stone fruit crop groups, avocado, kiwi, mango, and pomegranates when used in accordance with label directions and good agricultural practices.

[FR Doc. 2016-20409 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 300 [Docket No. 160322276-6276-01] RIN 0648-XE741 International Fisheries; Western and Central Pacific Fisheries for Highly Migratory Species; Closure of Purse Seine Fishery in the ELAPS in 2016 AGENCY:

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

ACTION:

Temporary rule; fishery closure.

SUMMARY:

NMFS announces that the purse seine fishery in the Effort Limit Area for Purse Seine, or ELAPS, will close as a result of reaching the 2016 limit on purse seine fishing effort in the ELAPS. This action is necessary for the United States to implement provisions of a conservation and management measure adopted by the Commission for the Conservation and Management of Highly Migratory Fish Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean (WCPFC or Commission) and to satisfy the obligations of the United States under the Convention on the Conservation and Management of Highly Migratory Fish Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean (Convention), to which it is a Contracting Party.

DATES:

Effective 00:00 on September 2, 2016 universal time coordinated (UTC), until 24:00 on December 31, 2016 UTC.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Tom Graham, NMFS Pacific Islands Regional Office, 808-725-5032.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

U.S. purse seine fishing in the area of application of the Convention, or Convention Area, is managed, in part, under the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Convention Implementation Act (16 U.S.C. 6901 et seq.). Regulations implementing the Act are at 50 CFR part 300, subpart O. On behalf of the Secretary of Commerce, NMFS promulgates regulations under the Act as may be necessary to carry out the obligations of the United States under the Convention, including implementation of the decisions of the Commission.

Pursuant to WCPFC Conservation and Management Measure 2015-01, NMFS issued regulations that established a limit of 1,828 fishing days that may be used by U.S. purse seine fishing vessels in the ELAPS in calendar year 2016 (see interim rule at 81 FR 33147, published May 25, 2016, codified at 50 CFR 300.223). The ELAPS consists of the areas of the U.S. exclusive economic zone and the high seas that are in the Convention Area between the latitudes of 20° N. and 20° S. (see definition at 50 CFR 300.211). A fishing day means any day in which a fishing vessel of the United States equipped with purse seine gear searches for fish, deploys a fish aggregating device (FAD), services a FAD, or sets a purse seine, with the exception of setting a purse seine solely for the purpose of testing or cleaning the gear and resulting in no catch (see definition at 50 CFR 300.211).

Based on data submitted in logbooks and other available information, NMFS expects that the limit of 1,828 fishing days in the ELAPS will be reached, and in accordance with the procedures established at 50 CFR 300.223(a), announces that the purse seine fishery in the ELAPS will be closed starting at 00:00 on September 2, 2016 UTC, and will remain closed until 24:00 on December 31, 2016 UTC. Accordingly, it shall be prohibited for any fishing vessel of the United States equipped with purse seine gear to be used for fishing in the ELAPS from 00:00 on September 2, 2016 UTC until 24:00 December 31, 2016 UTC, except that such vessels will not prohibited from bunkering in the ELAPS during that period (50 CFR 300.223(a)).

Classification

There is good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) to waive prior notice and opportunity for public comment on this action. Compliance with the notice and comment requirement would be impracticable and contrary to the public interest, since NMFS would be unable to ensure that the 2016 limit on purse seine fishing effort in the ELAPS is not exceeded. This action is based on the best available information on U.S. purse seine fishing effort in the ELAPS. The action is necessary for the United States to comply with its obligations under the Convention and is important for the conservation and management of bigeye tuna, yellowfin tuna, and skipjack tuna in the western and central Pacific Ocean. For the same reasons, there is good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3) to establish an effective date less than 30 days after the date of publication of this notice.

This action is required by 50 CFR 300.223(a) and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866.

Authority:

16 U.S.C. 6901 et seq.

Dated: August 22, 2016. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2016-20420 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 622 [Docket No. 120403249-2492-02] RIN 0648-XE829 Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic; 2016 Recreational Accountability Measure and Closure for South Atlantic Golden Tilefish AGENCY:

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

ACTION:

Temporary rule; closure.

SUMMARY:

NMFS implements accountability measures (AMs) for the golden tilefish recreational sector in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of the South Atlantic for the 2016 fishing year through this temporary rule. NMFS estimates recreational landings of golden tilefish in 2016 have exceeded the recreational annual catch limit (ACL). Therefore, NMFS closes the golden tilefish recreational sector in the South Atlantic EEZ on August 27, 2016. This closure is necessary to protect the golden tilefish resource.

DATES:

This rule is effective 12:01 a.m., local time, August 27, 2016, until 12:01 a.m., local time, January 1, 2017.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Mary Vara, NMFS Southeast Regional Office, telephone: 727-824-5305, email: [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

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

The recreational ACL for golden tilefish is 3,019 fish. In accordance with regulations at 50 CFR 622.193(a)(2)(i), if recreational landings of golden tilefish reach the recreational ACL, the Assistant Administrator for NOAA Fisheries (AA) will file a notification with the Office of the Federal Register to close the recreational sector for the remainder of the fishing year. Landings data from the NMFS Southeast Fisheries Science Center in 2016 indicate that the golden tilefish recreational ACL has been exceeded. Therefore, this temporary rule implements an AM to close the golden tilefish recreational sector of the snapper-grouper fishery for the remainder of the 2016 fishing year. As a result, the recreational sector for golden tilefish in the South Atlantic EEZ will be closed effective 12:01 a.m., local time August 27, 2016.

During the closure, the bag and possession limits for golden tilefish in or from the South Atlantic EEZ are zero. The recreational sector for golden tilefish will reopen on January 1, 2017, the beginning of the 2017 recreational fishing season.

Classification

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

This action is taken under 50 CFR 622.193(a)(2)(i) and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866.

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

This action responds to the best scientific information available. The AA finds that the need to immediately implement this action to close the recreational sector for golden tilefish constitutes good cause to waive the requirements to provide prior notice and opportunity for public comment on this temporary rule pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B), because such procedures are unnecessary and contrary to the public interest. Such procedures are unnecessary because the AMs established by Regulatory Amendment 12 to the FMP (77 FR 61295, October 9, 2012) have already been subject to notice and comment. All that remains is to notify the public of the recreational closure for golden tilefish for the remainder of the 2016 fishing year. Prior notice and opportunity for comment are contrary to the public interest because of the need to immediately implement this action to protect the golden tilefish resource. Time required for notice and public comment would allow for continued recreational harvest and further exceedance of the recreational ACL.

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

Authority:

16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

Dated: August 22, 2016. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2016-20412 Filed 8-22-16; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 622 [Docket No. 130312235-3658-02] RIN 0648-XE824 Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Snapper-Grouper Resources of the South Atlantic; Trip Limit Reduction AGENCY:

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

ACTION:

Temporary rule; trip limit reduction.

SUMMARY:

NMFS reduces the commercial trip limit for vermilion snapper in or from the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of the South Atlantic to 500 lb (227 kg), gutted weight, 555 lb (252 kg), round weight. This trip limit reduction is necessary to protect the South Atlantic vermilion snapper resource.

DATES:

This rule is effective 12:01 a.m., local time, August 28, 2016, until 12:01 a.m., local time, January 1, 2017.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Mary Vara, NMFS Southeast Regional Office, telephone: 727-824-5305, email: [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

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

The commercial ACL (commercial quota) for vermilion snapper in the South Atlantic is divided into two 6-month time periods, January through June, and July through December. For the July 1 through December 31, 2016, fishing season, the commercial quota is 388,703 lb (176,313 kg), gutted weight, 431,460 lb (195,707 kg), round weight (50 CFR 622.190(a)(4)(ii)(D)). As specified in 50 CFR 622.190(a)(4)(iii), any unused portion of the commercial quota from the January through June 2016, fishing season would be added to the commercial quota for the July through December 2016, fishing season. However, in 2016, there was no unused commercial quota for the January through June period as the commercial sector reached its quota during the first 6-month period. Accordingly, the commercial sector was closed on March 29, 2016, through June 30, 2016 (81 FR 16095, March 25, 2016).

Under 50 CFR 622.191(a)(6)(ii), NMFS is required to reduce the commercial trip limit for vermilion snapper from 1,000 lb (454 kg), gutted weight, 1,110 lb (503 kg), round weight, when 75 percent of the fishing season commercial quota is reached or projected to be reached, by filing a notification to that effect with the Office of the Federal Register, as established by Regulatory Amendment 18 to the FMP (78 FR 47574, August 6, 2013). The reduced commercial trip limit is 500 lb (227 kg), gutted weight, 555 lb (252 kg), round weight. Based on current information, NMFS has determined that 75 percent of the available commercial quota for the July through December 2016 fishing season for vermilion snapper will be reached by August 28, 2016. Accordingly, NMFS is reducing the commercial trip limit for vermilion snapper to 500 lb (227 kg), gutted weight, 555 lb (252 kg), round weight, in or from the South Atlantic EEZ at 12:01 a.m., local time, on August 28, 2016. This reduced commercial trip limit will remain in effect until the start of the next commercial fishing season on January 1, 2017, or until the commercial quota is reached and the commercial sector closes, whichever occurs first.

Classification

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

This action is taken under 50 CFR 622.191(a)(6)(ii) and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866.

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

This action responds to the best scientific information available. The Assistant Administrator for NOAA Fisheries (AA) finds that the need to immediately implement this commercial trip limit reduction constitutes good cause to waive the requirements to provide prior notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to the authority set forth in 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B), because prior notice and opportunity for public comment on this temporary rule is unnecessary and contrary to the public interest. Such procedures are unnecessary, because the rule establishing the trip limit has already been subject to notice and comment, and all that remains is to notify the public of the trip limit reduction. Prior notice and opportunity for public comment is contrary to the public interest, because any delay in reducing the commercial trip limit could result in the commercial quota being exceeded. There is a need to immediately implement this action to protect the vermilion snapper resource, since the capacity of the fishing fleet allows for rapid harvest of the commercial quota. Prior notice and opportunity for public comment on this action would require time and increase the probability that the commercial sector could exceed its quota.

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

Authority:

16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

Dated: August 22, 2016. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2016-20414 Filed 8-22-16; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
81 165 Thursday, August 25, 2016 Proposed Rules DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2016-8840; Airspace Docket No. 16-AGL-20] Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace for the Following Ohio Towns; Marion, OH; Portsmouth, OH; Van Wert, OH; and Versailles, OH AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

SUMMARY:

This action proposes to modify Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Marion Municipal Airport, Marion, OH; Greater Portsmouth Regional Airport, Portsmouth, OH; Van Wert County Airport, Van Wert, OH; and Darke County Airport, Versailles, OH. Decommissioning of non-directional radio beacon (NDB), cancellation of NDB approaches, and implementation of area navigation (RNAV) procedures have made this action necessary for the safety and management of Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) operations at these airports. Additionally, the geographic coordinates for Southern Ohio Regional Medical Center Heliport, Portsmouth OH; and Darke County Airport would be adjusted to coincide with the FAA's aeronautical database. Also, the name of Southern Ohio Regional Medical Center Heliport (formerly Southern Ohio Medical Center Helipad) would be updated to coincide with the FAA's aeronautical database.

DATES:

Comments must be received on or before October 11, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

Send comments on this proposal to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590; telephone (202) 366-9826, or 1-800-647-5527. You must identify FAA Docket No. FAA-2016-8840; Airspace Docket No. 16-AGL-20, 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.

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 20591; telephone: 202-267-8783. The Order is also available for inspection at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of 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:

Jeffrey Claypool, Federal Aviation Administration, Operations Support Group, Central Service Center, 10101 Hillwood Parkway, Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone (817) 222-5711.

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 amend Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Marion Municipal Airport, Marion, OH; Greater Portsmouth Regional Airport, Portsmouth, OH; Van Wert County Airport, Van Wert, OH; and Darke County Airport, Versailles, OH.

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-2016-8840/Airspace Docket No. 16-AGL-20.” 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.regulations.gov.

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 Federal Aviation Administration, Air Traffic Organization, Central Service Center, Operations Support Group, 10101 Hillwood Parkway, Fort Worth, TX, 76177.

Availability and Summary of Documents Proposed for Incorporation by Reference

This document proposes to 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 modifying Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface:

Within a 7-mile radius (reduced from a 7.4-mile radius) of Marion Municipal Airport, Marion, OH;

Within a 6.8-mile radius (increased from a 6.4-mile radius) of Greater Portsmouth Regional Airport, Portsmouth, OH, and updating the name and geographic coordinates of Southern Ohio Regional Medical Center Heliport (formerly Southern Ohio Medical Center Helipad), Portsmouth, OH, to coincide with the FAA's aeronautical database;

Within a 6.5-mile radius (reduced from a 7-mile radius) of Van Wert County Airport, Van Wert, OH;

And within a 6.4-mile radius (increased from a 6.3-mile radius) of Darke County Airport, Versailles, OH, removing the segment extending 7 miles west of the airport, and updating the geographic coordinates of the airport to coincide with the FAA's aeronautical database.

Airspace reconfiguration is necessary due to the decommissioning of NDBs, cancellation of NDB approaches, and implementation of RNAV procedures at the above airports. Controlled airspace is necessary for the safety and management of the standard instrument approach procedures for IFR operations at the airports.

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

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 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward from 700 feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth AGL OH E5 Marion, OH [Amended] Marion Municipal Airport, OH (Lat. 40°36′59″ N., long. 83°03′49″ W.)

That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 7-mile radius of Marion Municipal Airport, excluding that airspace within the Bucyrus, OH, Class E airspace area.

AGL OH E5 Portsmouth, OH [Amended] Greater Portsmouth Regional Airport, OH (Lat. 38°50′26″ N., long. 82°50′50″ W.) Portsmouth, Southern Ohio Regional Medical Center Heliport, OH, Point in Space Coordinates (Lat. 38°45′16″ N., long. 82°58′38″ W.)

That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.8-mile radius of Greater Portsmouth Regional Airport, and within a 6-mile radius of the Point in Space serving Southern Ohio Regional Medical Center Heliport.

AGL OH E5 Van Wert, OH [Amended] Van Wert County Airport, OH (Lat. 40°51′50″ N., long. 84°36′23″ W.)

That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.5-mile radius of Van Wert County Airport.

AGL OH E5 Versailles, OH [Amended] Darke County Airport, OH (Lat. 40°12′16″ N., long. 84°31′55″ W.)

That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.4-mile radius of Darke County Airport.

Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on August 15, 2016. Christopher Southerland, Acting Manager, Operations Support Group, ATO Central Service Center.
[FR Doc. 2016-20124 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2016-8835; Airspace Docket No. 16-ASW-14] Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace for the Paragould, AR AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

SUMMARY:

This action proposes to modify Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Kirk Field, Paragould, AR. Decommissioning of the non-directional radio beacons (NDB), cancellation of NDB approaches, and implementation of area navigation (RNAV) procedures have made this action necessary for the safety and management of Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) operations at the airport.

DATES:

Comments must be received on or before October 11, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

Send comments on this proposal to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590; telephone (202) 366-9826, or 1-800-647-5527. You must identify FAA Docket No. FAA-2016-8835; Airspace Docket No. 16-ASW-14, 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.

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 20591; telephone: 202-267-8783. The Order is also available for inspection at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of 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:

Jeffrey Claypool, Federal Aviation Administration, Operations Support Group, Central Service Center, 10101 Hillwood Parkway, Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone (817) 222-5711.

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 amend Class E airspace at Kirk Field, Paragould, AR.

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-2016-8835/Airspace Docket No. 16-ASW-14.” 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.regulations.gov.

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 Federal Aviation Administration, Air Traffic Organization, Central Service Center, Operations Support Group, 10101 Hillwood Parkway, Fort Worth, TX 76177.

Availability and Summary of Documents Proposed for Incorporation by Reference

This document proposes to 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 modifying Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.5-mile radius (increased from the 6.4-mile radius) of Kirk Field, Paragould, AR, with an extension south of the airport from the 6.5-mile radius 10.1 miles. Airspace reconfiguration is necessary due to the decommissioning of the NDB, cancellation of NDB approach, and implementation of RNAV procedures at the airport. Controlled airspace is necessary for the safety and management of the standard instrument approach procedures for IFR operations at the airport.

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

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 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward from 700 feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth ASW AR E5 Paragould, AR [Amended] Kirk Field, AR (Lat. 36°03′50″ N., long. 90°30′33″ W.) Jonesboro VOR (Lat. 35°52′30″ N., long. 90°35′19″ W.)

That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.5-mile radius of Kirk Field, and within 3 miles each side of the 019° radial from the Jonesboro VOR extending from the 6.5-mile radius to 10.1 miles south of the airport.

Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on August 15, 2016. Christopher Southerland, Acting Manager, Operations Support Group, ATO Central Service Center.
[FR Doc. 2016-20137 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2016-6413; Airspace Docket No. 16-AWP-11] Proposed Establishment Class E Airspace, Silver Springs, NV AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

SUMMARY:

This action proposes to establish Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Silver Springs Airport, Silver Springs, NV. The FAA found establishment of airspace necessary for the safety and management of Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) operations for new Standard Instrument Approach Procedures (SIAPs) at the airport.

DATES:

Comments must be received on or before October 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 or 1-800-647-5527. You must identify FAA Docket No. FAA-2016-6413; Airspace Docket No. 16-AWP-11, at the beginning of your comments. You may also submit comments through the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov. You may review the public docket containing the proposal, any comments received, and any final disposition in person in the Dockets Office between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

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 20591; telephone: 202-267-8783. The Order is also available for inspection at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of 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:

Richard Roberts, Federal Aviation Administration, Operations Support Group, Western Service Center, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057; telephone (425) 203-4517.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Authority for This Rulemaking

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

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-2016-6413/Airspace Docket No. 16-AWP-11.” The postcard will be date/time stamped and returned to the commenter.

Availability of NPRMs

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

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

Availability and Summary of Documents Proposed for Incorporation by Reference

This document proposes to 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 establishing Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Silver Springs Airport, Silver Springs, NV, to accommodate new standard instrument approach procedures for IFR operations at the airport. The Class E airspace area would be established to within a 2-mile radius of Silver Springs Airport, with segments extending from the 2-mile radius to 9 miles northeast, and 7.5 miles northeast of the airport.

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

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 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward from 700 feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth AWP NV E5 Silver Springs, NV [New] Silver Springs, NV (Lat. 39°24′11″ N., long. 119°15′4″ W.)

That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 2-mile radius of Silver Springs Airport, and that airspace 2 miles either side of the 69° bearing from the 2-mile radius to 9 miles northeast of the airport, and that airspace 1.5 miles either side of the 60° bearing from the 2-mile radius to 7.5 miles northeast of the airport.

Issued in Seattle, Washington, on August 11, 2016. Tracey Johnson, Manager, Operations Support Group, Western Service Center.
[FR Doc. 2016-20117 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2016-8828; Airspace Docket No. 16-ASW-13] Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace for the Following Texas Towns; Levelland, TX; Vernon, TX; and Winters, TX AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

SUMMARY:

This action proposes to modify Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Levelland Municipal Airport, Levelland, TX; Wilbarger County Airport, Vernon, TX; and Winters Municipal Airport, Winters, TX. Decommissioning of non-directional radio beacon (NDB), cancellation of NDB approaches, and implementation of area navigation (RNAV) procedures have made this action necessary for the safety and management of Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) operations at these airports. Additionally, the geographic coordinates at Levelland Municipal Airport and Wilbarger County Airport would be adjusted to coincide with the FAA's aeronautical database.

DATES:

Comments must be received on or before October 11, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

Send comments on this proposal to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590; telephone (202) 366-9826, or 1-800-647-5527. You must identify FAA Docket No. FAA-2016-8828; Airspace Docket No. 16-ASW-13, at the beginning of your comments. You may also submit comments through the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov. You may review the public docket containing the proposal, any comments received, and any final disposition in person in the Dockets Office between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

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 20591; telephone: 202-267-8783. The Order is also available for inspection at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of 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:

Jeffrey Claypool, Federal Aviation Administration, Operations Support Group, Central Service Center, 10101 Hillwood Parkway, Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone (817) 222-5711.

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 amend Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Levelland Municipal Airport, Levelland, TX; Wilbarger County Airport, Vernon, TX; and Winters Municipal Airport, Winters, TX.

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-2016-8828/Airspace Docket No. 16-ASW-13.” 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.regulations.gov.

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 Federal Aviation Administration, Air Traffic Organization, Central Service Center, Operations Support Group, 10101 Hillwood Parkway, Fort Worth, TX 76177.

Availability and Summary of Documents Proposed for Incorporation by Reference

This document proposes to 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 modifying Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface:

Within a 6.6-mile radius (decreased from a 6.7-mile radius) of Levelland Municipal Airport, Levelland, TX, and updating the geographic coordinates of the airport to coincide with the FAA's aeronautical database;

Within a 6.6-mile radius (decreased from a 7-mile radius) of Wilbarger County Airport, Vernon, TX, and updating the geographic coordinates of the airport to coincide with the FAA's aeronautical database;

And within a 6.6-mile radius (increased from a 6.3-mile radius) of Winters Municipal Airport, Winters, TX, with an extension to the north of the airport from the 6.6-mile radius to 9.3 miles, and with a new extension to the south of the airport from the 6.6-mile radius to 9.6 miles.

Airspace reconfiguration is necessary due to the decommissioning of NDBs, cancellation of NDB approaches, and implementation of RNAV procedures at these airports. Controlled airspace is necessary for the safety and management of the standard instrument approach procedures for IFR operations at the airports.

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

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 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward From 700 Feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth. ASW TX E5 Levelland, TX [Amended] Levelland Municipal, TX (Lat. 33°33′09″ N., long. 102°22′21″ W.)

That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.6-mile radius of Levelland Municipal Airport.

ASW TX E5 Vernon, TX [Amended] Wilbarger County Airport, TX (Lat. 34°13′32″ N., long. 99°17′02″ W.)

That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.6-mile radius of Wilbarger County Airport.

ASW TX E5 Winters, TX [Amended] Winters Municipal Airport, TX (Lat. 31°56′50″ N., long. 99°59′09″ W.)

That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.6-mile radius of Winters Municipal Airport, and 1 mile each side of the 352° bearing from the airport extending from the 6.6-mile radius to 9.3 miles north of the airport, and within 2 miles each side of the 180° bearing from the airport from the 6.6-mile radius to 9.6 miles south of the airport.

Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on August 17, 2016. Christopher L. Southerland, Acting Manager, Operations Support Group, ATO Central Service Center.
[FR Doc. 2016-20152 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration 19 CFR Part 351 [Docket Number 160815742-6742-01] RIN 0625-AB08 Modification of Regulations Regarding Basis for Normal Value AGENCY:

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

ACTION:

Proposed rule and request for comments.

SUMMARY:

The Department of Commerce (“the Department”) proposes to modify the regulations pertaining to the use of constructed value or third country sales for purposes of determining normal value, where the exporting country does not constitute a viable market, and is seeking comments from parties. This modification, if adopted, will specify that, where the exporting country does not constitute a viable market, the Department normally will calculate normal value based upon constructed value. This modification would invert the preexisting order of preference that, where the exporting country does not constitute a viable market, the Department normally calculates normal value based on sales in a viable third country. The Department proposes this modification in light of certain advantages of constructed value over third country sales, such as availability of cost of production information and comparability to U.S. prices.

DATES:

To be assured of consideration, written comments must be received no later than September 26, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

All comments must be submitted through the Federal eRulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov, Docket No. ITA-2016-0009, unless the commenter does not have access to the internet. Commenters that do not have access to the internet may submit the original and one electronic copy on CD-ROM of each set of comments by mail or hand delivery/courier. All comments should be addressed to Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement & Compliance, Room 1870, Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20230. Comments submitted to the Department will be uploaded to the eRulemaking Portal at www.Regulations.gov.

The Department will consider all comments received before the close of the comment period. All comments responding to this notice will be a matter of public record and will be available on the Federal eRulemaking Portal at www.Regulations.gov. The Department will not accept comments accompanied by a request that part or all of the material be treated confidentially because of its business proprietary nature or for any other reason.

Any questions concerning file formatting, document conversion, access on the Internet, or other electronic filing issues should be addressed to Moustapha Sylla, Enforcement and Compliance, at (202) 482-4685 or email address: [email protected]

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Zachary Simmons at (202) 482-4044 or Abdelali Elouaradia at (202) 482-1374.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

In general terms, section 731 of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act), provides that when a company is selling foreign merchandise in the United States at less than fair value, and the International Trade Commission determines that an industry is materially injured or threatened with material injury by reason of such sales or imports, the Department shall impose an antidumping duty. Furthermore, section 751 of the Act provides that the Department shall periodically review and determine, upon request, the amount of any antidumping duty. Pursuant to section 773(a) of the Act, the Department's analysis involves a comparison between a company's sales price to, or in, the United States (defined either as export price or constructed export price) with the normal value. See 19 CFR 351.401(a); see also section 772 of the Act (defining export price and constructed export price); section 773 of the Act (defining normal value). Although in most circumstances, sales in the exporting country provide the most appropriate basis for normal value, section 773 of the Act also permits the use of third country sales or constructed value as the basis for normal value. See also 19 CFR 351.404(a).

The Department's regulations identify circumstances in which it may rely upon another basis for normal value. The Department may use a basis other than sales in the exporting country where, pursuant to 19 CFR 351.404(b), the Department determines that the exporting country does not constitute a viable market. 19 CFR 351.404(c). In addition, the Department may use a basis other than sales in the exporting country where a proper comparison between sales in the exporting country and sales in the United States is not possible. 19 CFR 351.404(c)(2)(i).1

1 The Department has exercised this discretion in the past. See, e.g., Large Newspaper Printing Presses and Components Thereof, Whether Assembled or Unassembled, from Japan, 65 FR 62700, 62702 (Dep't of Commerce Oct. 19, 2000) (prelim. results) (basing normal value on constructed value because “the unique, custom-built nature of each LNPP sold does not permit proper price-to-price comparisons”) unchanged in Large Newspaper Printing Presses and Components Thereof, Whether Assembled or Unassembled, from Japan, 66 FR 11555 (Dep't of Commerce Feb. 26, 2001) (final results).

In those circumstances where the Department determines that sales in the exporting country do not permit an appropriate comparison to United States sales, “[t]he Secretary normally will calculate normal value based on sales to a third country rather than on constructed value if adequate information is available and verifiable . . .” 19 CFR 351.404(f). Thus, although § 404(f) of the Department's regulations contemplates both sales in a third country and constructed value as bases to calculate normal value, it establishes an order of preference in which the Department “normally” will use sales in a third country. Section 404(f) establishes sales in a third country as the preferred basis to calculate normal value where (1) there are no sales of the foreign like product in the exporting country, (2) there are insufficient sales of the foreign like product in the exporting country and thus the market is not viable, or (3) the Department has otherwise determined it cannot use such sales for purposes of determining normal value pursuant to section 773(a)(1)(B)(i) of the Act.

However, the Department has identified some factors in favor of inverting the current order of preference to use, normally, constructed value rather than sales in a third country. First, the proposed preference for constructed value accords with the TPEA, which amended section 773(b)(2) of the Act, regarding the importance of the cost of production in the Department's analysis of unfair trading behavior. Specifically, the TPEA amended section 773(b)(2) of the Act to require that the Department request cost information from individually examined respondent companies in antidumping proceedings. See Trade Preferences Extension Act of 2015, Public Law 114-27, 129 Stat. 362 (2015). As a consequence, the Department, in all segments of its antidumping duty proceedings for which the complete initial questionnaire was not issued as of August 6, 2015, now requires that parties provide cost of production information, which is necessary information for the use of constructed value. See Dates of Application of Amendments to the Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Laws Made by the Trade Preferences Extension Act of 2015, 80 FR 46793, 46794 (August 6, 2015). Therefore, obtaining constructed value information will not generally impose an additional burden upon the Department or respondent parties. By comparison, the Department would not necessarily already have requested the information necessary to calculate normal value based upon sales in a third country.

Second, constructed value normally may be preferable to sales in a third country because it provides a more appropriate comparison to U.S. prices. Based upon the Department's experience, third country sales sometimes involve products that are similar, but not identical, to the products sold in the United States. See 19 CFR 351.404(e). However, as delineated under sections 773(e) and (f) of the Act, constructed value reflects the costs associated with the production and sale of the merchandise.

Given the foregoing considerations, the Department is issuing this proposed rule to modify the regulations at issue pursuant to Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 553) notice and comment procedures; the Department invites comments from all parties.

Proposed Modification

The Department proposes to modify 19 CFR 351.404(f) and 19 CFR 351.405(a) as indicated below. These modifications, if adopted, are intended to establish an order of preference in which, where the exporting country does not constitute a viable market, the Department normally will calculate normal value using constructed value. Although sales in a third country remain an appropriate basis for normal value in certain circumstances, constructed value would represent the approach “normally” used by the Department.

Proposed Effective Date

The Department proposes to make this rulemaking effective for segments of antidumping duty proceedings initiated on or after 30 days following the date of publication of the final rule.

Comments

The Department invites parties to comment on this proposed rule and the proposed effective date. Further, any party may submit comments expressing its disagreement with the Department's proposal and may propose an alternative approach.

Classifications Executive Order 12866

It has been determined that this proposed rule is not significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866.

Paperwork Reduction Act

This proposed rule contains no new collection of information subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. chapter 35.

Executive Order 13132

This proposed rule does not contain policies with federalism implications as that term is defined in section 1(a) of Executive Order 13132, dated August 4, 1999 (64 FR 43255 (August 10, 1999)).

Regulatory Flexibility Act

The Chief Counsel for Regulation has certified to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration under the provisions of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 605(b), that the proposed rule would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small business entities.

The entities upon which this rulemaking could have an impact include foreign exporters and producers, some of whom are affiliated with U.S. companies, and U.S. importers. Enforcement & Compliance currently does not have information on the number of entities that would be considered small under the Small Business Administration's size standards for small businesses in the relevant industries. However, some of these entities may be considered small entities under the appropriate industry size standards. Although this proposed rule may indirectly impact small entities that are parties to individual antidumping duty proceedings, it will not have a significant economic impact on any entities.

The proposed action alters the Department's approach in instances where the exporting country does not constitute a viable market or, pursuant to 19 CFR 351.404(c)(2), the Department declines to calculate normal value on the basis of exporting country sales. In particular, it would direct the Department normally to rely upon constructed value, rather than sales in a third country, as the basis for normal value. However, if the proposed rule is implemented, no entities would be required to undertake additional compliance measures or expenditures. Specifically, section 773(b)(2) of the Act now requires that the Department request cost of production information from each examined respondent in every segment of an antidumping duty proceeding. As a result, for those individually examined respondents whose exporting country is not viable or where the Department cannot otherwise use the sales in the exporting country, the Department will already have required submission of the information necessary to calculate normal value based upon constructed value, thus obviating the need to request information on sales in a viable third country. Therefore, the proposed rule would not have a significant economic impact upon a substantial number of small business entities. For this reason, an Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis is not required and one has not been prepared.

List of Subjects in 19 CFR Part 351

Administrative practice and procedure, Antidumping, Business and industry, Cheese, Confidential business information, Countervailing duties, Freedom of information, Investigations, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

Dated: August 19, 2016. Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.

For the reasons stated, 19 CFR part 351 is proposed to be amended as follows:

PART 351—ANTIDUMPING AND COUNTERVAILING DUTIES 1. The authority citation for 19 CFR part 351 continues to read as follows: Authority:

5 U.S.C. 301; 19 U.S.C. 1202 note; 19 U.S.C. 1303 note; 19 U.S.C. 1671 et seq.; and 19 U.S.C. 3538.

2. In § 351.404, revise paragraph (f) to read as follows:
§ 351.404 Selection of the market to be used as the basis for normal value.

(f) Constructed value and third country sales. The Secretary normally will calculate normal value based on constructed value (see section 773(a)(4) of the Act (Use of Constructed Value)) rather than on third country sales.

3. In § 351.405, revise paragraph (a) to read as follows:
§ 351.405 Calculation of normal value based on constructed value.

(a) Introduction. In certain circumstances, the Secretary may determine normal value by constructing a value based on the cost of manufacture, selling general and administrative expenses, and profit. The Secretary may use constructed value as the basis for normal value where: The exporting country is not viable; sales below the cost of production are disregarded; sales outside the ordinary course of trade, or sales the prices of which are otherwise unrepresentative, are disregarded; sales used to establish a fictitious market are disregarded; no contemporaneous sales of comparable merchandise are available; or in other circumstances where the Secretary determines that exporting country sales are inappropriate. (See section 773(e) and section 773(f) of the Act.) This section clarifies the meaning of certain terms relating to constructed value.

[FR Doc. 2016-20417 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration 21 CFR Parts 117 and 507 [Docket No. FDA-2016-D-2373] Classification of Activities as Harvesting, Packing, Holding, or Manufacturing/Processing for Farms and Facilities; Draft Guidance for Industry; Availability AGENCY:

Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

ACTION:

Notification of availability.

SUMMARY:

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA or we) is announcing the availability of a draft guidance for industry entitled “Classification of Activities as Harvesting, Packing, Holding, or Manufacturing/Processing for Farms and Facilities; Draft Guidance for Industry.” The draft guidance, when finalized, will help food establishments determine whether the activities that they perform are within the “farm” definition established in our regulation for Registration of Food Facilities. Determining whether the activities a food establishment performs are within the “farm” definition plays a key role in determining whether its business is exempt from our regulations for Registration of Food Facilities, and from certain requirements in our regulations for “Current Good Manufacturing Practice, Hazard Analysis, and Risk-Based Preventive Controls for Human Food” and “Current Good Manufacturing Practice, Hazard Analysis, and Risk-Based Preventive Controls for Food for Animals.”

DATES:

Although you can comment on any guidance at any time (see 21 CFR 10.115(g)(5)), to ensure that we consider your comment on the draft guidance before we begin work on the final version of the guidance, submit either electronic or written comments on the draft guidance by February 21, 2017.

ADDRESSES:

You may submit comments as follows:

Electronic Submissions

Submit electronic comments in the following way:

Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments. Comments submitted electronically, including attachments, to http://www.regulations.gov will be posted to the docket unchanged. Because your comment will be made public, you are solely responsible for ensuring that your comment does not include any confidential information that you or a third party may not wish to be posted, such as medical information, your or anyone else's Social Security number, or confidential business information, such as a manufacturing process. Please note that if you include your name, contact information, or other information that identifies you in the body of your comments, that information will be posted on http://www.regulations.gov.

• If you want to submit a comment with confidential information that you do not wish to be made available to the public, submit the comment as a written/paper submission and in the manner detailed (see “Written/Paper Submissions” and “Instructions”).

Written/Paper Submissions

Submit written/paper submissions as follows:

Mail/Hand delivery/Courier (for written/paper submissions): Division of Dockets Management (HFA-305), Food and Drug Administration, 5630 Fishers Lane, Rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852.

• For written/paper comments submitted to the Division of Dockets Management, FDA will post your comment, as well as any attachments, except for information submitted, marked and identified, as confidential, if submitted as detailed in “Instructions.”

Instructions: All submissions received must include the Docket No. FDA-2016-D-2373 for “Classification of Activities as Harvesting, Packing, Holding, or Manufacturing/Processing for Farms and Facilities; Draft Guidance for Industry.” Received comments will be placed in the docket and, except for those submitted as “Confidential Submissions,” publicly viewable at http://www.regulations.gov or at the Division of Dockets Management between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Confidential Submissions—To submit a comment with confidential information that you do not wish to be made publicly available, submit your comments only as a written/paper submission. You should submit two copies total. One copy will include the information you claim to be confidential with a heading or cover note that states “THIS DOCUMENT CONTAINS CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION.” The Agency will review this copy, including the claimed confidential information, in its consideration of comments. The second copy, which will have the claimed confidential information redacted/blacked out, will be available for public viewing and posted on http://www.regulations.gov. Submit both copies to the Division of Dockets Management. If you do not wish your name and contact information to be made publicly available, you can provide this information on the cover sheet and not in the body of your comments and you must identify this information as “confidential.” Any information marked as “confidential” will not be disclosed except in accordance with 21 CFR 10.20 and other applicable disclosure law. For more information about FDA's posting of comments to public dockets, see 80 FR 56469, September 18, 2015, or access the information at: http://www.fda.gov/regulatoryinformation/dockets/default.htm.

Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or the electronic and written/paper comments received, go to http://www.regulations.gov and insert the docket number, found in brackets in the heading of this document, into the “Search” box and follow the prompts and/or go to the Division of Dockets Management, 5630 Fishers Lane, Rm. 1061, Rockville, MD 20852.

Submit written requests for single copies of the draft guidance to the Office of Food Safety, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (HFS-300), Food and Drug Administration, 5001 Campus Dr., College Park, MD 20740. Send two self-addressed adhesive labels to assist that office in processing your request. See the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section for electronic access to the draft guidance.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Jenny Scott, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (HFS-300), Food and Drug Administration, 5001 Campus Dr., College Park, MD 20740, 240-402-2166.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

We are announcing the availability of a draft guidance for industry entitled “Classification of Activities as Harvesting, Packing, Holding, or Manufacturing/Processing for Farms and Facilities.” We are issuing the draft guidance consistent with our good guidance practices regulation (21 CFR 10.115). The draft guidance, when finalized, will represent the current thinking of the FDA on this topic. It does not establish any rights for any person and is not binding on FDA or the public. You can use an alternate approach if it satisfies the requirements of the applicable statutes and regulations.

Section 103(c) of the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) directed us to conduct rulemaking to clarify the on-farm activities that would, in part, determine when an establishment is required to register with us as a “facility,” or is not required to register with us because the establishment is a “farm.” To do so, we conducted rulemaking to revise and add farm-related definitions to our existing regulation for Registration of Food Facilities in the same rulemaking documents that we issued to establish our regulation entitled “Current Good Manufacturing Practice, Hazard Analysis, and Risk-Based Preventive Controls for Human Food” in part 117 (21 CFR part 117). (See the final rule at 80 FR 55908, September 17, 2015). For the purposes of the draft guidance, we call that rulemaking “the farm definition rulemaking.” The farm definition rulemaking revised the “farm” definition to provide for two types of farms: (1) Primary production farms and (2) secondary activities farms. The farm definition rulemaking also revised three definitions associated with the “farm” definition (i.e., the definitions of “packing,” “holding,” and “manufacturing/processing”) and added more examples of activities in each of these definitions. The farm definition rulemaking also established a new definition associated with the “farm” definition (i.e., the definition of “harvesting”) and included examples of harvesting activities in the definition. During the farm definition rulemaking, several comments asked us to classify specific on-farm activities as harvesting, packing, holding, or manufacturing/processing so that an operation that conducts these activities on a farm can determine whether conducting that specific activity is within, or outside, the “farm” definition. Some comments asked us to make a table of activities prominently available on our Internet site for easy access whenever the public seeks out information regarding regulations to which these activities apply. (See 80 FR 55908 at 55920.) To address these comments, we announced our intent to issue a draft guidance with our current thinking on the classification of activities as “harvesting,” “packing,” “holding,” or “manufacturing/processing” (80 FR 55908 at 55921). The draft guidance that we are making available implements that stated intent.

The draft guidance provides examples of activities classified as “harvesting,” “packing,” “holding,” or “manufacturing/processing,” as well as activities classified in more than one way. We note that the list of examples of activities classified as “holding” in the draft guidance does not include “repacking and blast freezing . . . when product is not exposed to the environment,” despite our statement in the farm definition rulemaking that such activities would be considered practical necessities for distribution and therefore “holding.” See 80 FR 55908 at 55934 (Comment/Response 44). We made similar statements in a related rulemaking to establish our regulation entitled “Current Good Manufacturing Practice, Hazard Analysis, and Risk-Based Preventive Controls for Food for Animals” in part 507 (21 CFR part 507) (80 FR 56170, September 17, 2015). See 80 FR 56170 at 56192 (Comment/Response 39). Our prior statements were incorrect and we hereby withdraw them. Neither “repacking” nor “blast freezing” should be considered a “holding” activity. We have thought more about what should be considered a “practical necessity” and are explaining our thinking more in the draft guidance.

II. Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

This draft guidance refers to previously approved collections of information found in FDA regulations. These collections of information are subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520). The collections of information in 21 CFR part 1, subpart H have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0502. The collections of information in part 117 have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0751. The collections of information in 21 CFR part 507 have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0789. The collections of information in 21 CFR part 112 have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0816. The collections of information in 21 CFR part 121 have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0812.

III. Electronic Access

Persons with access to the Internet may obtain the draft guidance at either http://www.fda.gov/ForIndustry/ColorAdditives/GuidanceComplianceRegulatoryInformation/ucm153033.htm or http://www.regulations.gov. Use the FDA Web site listed in the previous sentence to find the most current version of the guidance.

Dated: August 19, 2016. Jeremy Sharp, Deputy Commissioner for Policy, Planning, Legislation, and Analysis.
[FR Doc. 2016-20301 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4164-01-P
DEPARTMENT OF LABOR Mine Safety and Health Administration 30 CFR Parts 56 and 57 [Docket No. MSHA-2014-0030] RIN 1219-AB87 Examinations of Working Places in Metal and Nonmetal Mines AGENCY:

Mine Safety and Health Administration, Labor.

ACTION:

Proposed rule; extension of comment period; close of record.

SUMMARY:

In response to stakeholder requests, the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) is extending the comment period for Agency's proposed rule on Examinations of Working Places in Metal and Nonmetal Mines. The document also clarifies and seeks additional comments on selected proposed provisions.

DATES:

The comment period for the proposed rule published on June 8, 2016 (81 FR 36818), is extended. Comments must be received or postmarked by midnight Eastern Daylight Savings Time on September 30, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

Submit comments and informational materials, identified by RIN 1219-AB87 or Docket No. MSHA-2014-0030, by one of the following methods listed below:

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

Email: [email protected]

Mail: MSHA, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances, 201 12th Street South, Suite 4E401, Arlington, Virginia 22202-5452.

Hand Delivery or Courier: 201 12th Street South, Suite 4E401, Arlington, Virginia, between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. Sign in at the receptionist's desk on the 4th floor East, Suite 4E401.

Fax: 202-693-9441.

Instructions: All submissions for the proposed rule must include RIN 1219-AB87 or Docket No. MSHA-2014-0030. MSHA posts all comments without change, including any personal information provided. Access comments electronically on http://www.regulations.gov and on MSHA's Web site at https://www.msha.gov/regulations/rulemaking.

Docket: The proposed rule for Examinations of Working Places in Metal and Nonmetal Mines was published on June 8, 2016 (81 FR 36818). The document is available on https://www.regulations.gov and on MSHA's Web site at https://www.msha.gov/regulations/rulemaking/examinations-working-places-metal-and-nonmetal-mines. Review comments in person at the Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances, 201 12th Street South, Suite 4E401, Arlington, Virginia 22202-5452. Sign in at the receptionist's desk on the 4th floor East, Suite 4E401.

Email Notification: To subscribe to receive email notification when MSHA publishes rulemaking documents in the Federal Register, go to https://www.msha.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Sheila A. McConnell, Director, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances, MSHA, at [email protected] (email), 202-693-9440 (voice); or 202-693-9441 (facsimile). These are not toll-free numbers.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

On June 8, 2016 (81 FR 36818), the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) published a proposed rule on Examinations of Working Places in Metal and Nonmetal (MNM) mines. The purpose of this proposed rule is to ensure that mine operators identify and correct conditions that may adversely affect miners' safety or health. MSHA conducted public hearings on the proposed rule on July 19, 21, 26, and August 4, 2016. In response to stakeholder requests, MSHA is providing additional time for interested parties to comment on the proposed rule. MSHA is extending the deadline for comments from September 6, 2016, to September 30, 2016.

I. Request for Comments and Close of Record

Under proposed §§ 56.18002(a)(1) and 57.18002(a)(1), MSHA proposed that metal and nonmetal mine operators promptly notify miners in any affected areas of any conditions found that may adversely affect safety or health and promptly initiate appropriate action to correct such conditions. MSHA received comments and testimony requesting that the Agency clarify the proposed requirement “to promptly notify miners.” Upon consideration of such comments and testimony, MSHA clarifies that “to promptly notify miners” means any notification to the miners that alerts them to adverse conditions in their working place so that they can take necessary precautions to avoid an accident or injury before they begin work in that area. This notification could take any form that is effective to notify affected miners of the particular condition: Verbal notification, prominent warning signage, other written notification, etc. MSHA believes that, in most cases, verbal notification or descriptive warning signage would be needed to ensure that all affected miners received actual notification of the specific condition in question.

MSHA also clarifies that a “prompt” notification would occur before miners are potentially exposed to the condition; e.g., before miners begin work in the affected areas, or as soon as possible after work begins if the condition is discovered while they are working in an area. For example, this notification could occur when miners are given work-shift assignments. MSHA seeks comments on proposed §§ 56.18002(a)(1) and 57.18002(a)(1).

MSHA also clarifies that the proposed rule would not change existing standards regarding conditions that present imminent danger. Like the existing rule, the proposed §§ 56.18002(a)(2) and 57.18002(a)(2) continue to require that conditions that may present an imminent danger which are noted by the person conducting the examination shall be brought to the immediate attention of the operator who shall withdraw all persons from the area affected (except persons referred to in section 104(c) of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977) until the danger is abated.

As MSHA stated during the public hearings, the proposed rule would not change the existing definition of working place. Existing §§ 56.2 and 57.2 define “working place” as: “Any place in or about a mine where work is being performed.” Regarding the timing of the examination, some commenters expressed concern that the proposed rule would require mine operators to conduct an examination of the entire mine before the start of each shift. It is not MSHA's intent for the mine operator to examine the entire mine before work begins. The proposal would require an examination of “each working place” “before work begins in an area.” A “working place” is not the entire mine unless miners will be working in all areas of the mine. “Before work begins in an area” may or may not coincide with the start of any particular shift; it depends on when miners actually will be working in any particular working place. The proposed rule, like the existing rule, would require examinations in only those areas where work will be performed. As MSHA stated in the preamble, a “working place” applies to all locations at a mine where miners work in the extraction or milling processes. (81 FR 36821.) MSHA clarifies that consistent with the existing definition of “working place,” this includes roads traveled to and from a work area.

MSHA further explained that a working place would not include roads not directly involved in the mining process, administrative office buildings, parking lots, lunchrooms, toilet facilities or inactive storage areas. Unless required by other standards, mine operators would only be required to examine isolated, abandoned, or idle areas of mines or mills when miners have to perform work in these areas during the shift.

In MSHA's June 8, 2016 Federal Register proposed rule (81 FR 36826), the introductory text of §§ 56.18002(b) and 57.18002(b) stated that the person conducting the examination would be required to sign and date the record before the end of the shift for which the examination was made. MSHA has received a number of comments and heard testimony at the public hearings on stakeholder concerns that the proposed requirement to sign the examination record would increase the potential for liability of miners under section 110(c) of the Mine Act for those who conduct workplace examinations. MSHA notes that Mine Act liability as an “agent” of an operator under section 110(c) relates to the substantive duties and delegated responsibilities of the person in question. The proposed rule language would not change the qualification requirements for the “competent person” (although MSHA asked for comments on this issue). The proposal also would not change the substantive requirements either for the areas to be examined or the adverse conditions for which the examination would be made. While the degree of responsibility a particular person may have at any given mine may vary widely, the single act of printing one's initials or name, as opposed to signing one's name, adds no more and no less to the substantive duties and qualifications of the person who conducts the examination.

Nonetheless, some commenters were concerned that the signature requirement would discourage miners from conducting working place examinations and would have a negative impact on the quality of the examination. MSHA seeks comments on an alternative approach of simply requiring that the name of the competent person, rather than the signature, be included in the examination record.

MSHA received a number of comments and heard testimony at the public hearings seeking clarification on the recordkeeping requirements for adverse conditions found that are immediately corrected. Some commenters were concerned that recording every condition and every corrective action would be an excessive burden to mine operators, especially for small operators. As MSHA stated, the Agency believes that making and maintaining a record of adverse conditions found and corrective actions taken would help mine operators and miners and their representatives become more aware of potential dangers and more proactive in their approach to correcting these issues before they cause or contribute to an accident, injury, or fatality. (81 FR 36819). MSHA seeks information on how mine operators have used the examination record to identify and correct systemic adverse conditions that may contribute to an accident, injury, or fatality. In addition, MSHA seeks comment on possible limitations that would be placed on the mine operators' ability to use the examination record to identify and correct systemic adverse conditions if a record of an adverse condition that is immediately corrected is not made.

MSHA received a number of comments and heard testimony at the public hearings asking if MSHA would require the person conducting the working place examination to wait until the end of the shift to make the record. MSHA clarifies that the proposed rule would allow the competent person conducting the exam to make the record any time before the end of the shift.

II. Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

MSHA's proposed rule contains changes that would affect the burden in an existing OMB Control Number 1219-0089. MSHA, the Department of Labor, and the Office of Management and Budget are particularly interested in comments related to the recordkeeping requirement that:

• Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility;

• Evaluate the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;

• Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and

• Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses.

MSHA solicits comments from the mining community on all aspects of the proposed rule. Commenters are requested to be specific in their comments and to provide sufficient detail in their responses to enable proper Agency review and consideration. All comments must be received by September 30, 2016.

Dated: August 17, 2016. Joseph A. Main, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Mine Safety and Health.
[FR Doc. 2016-20395 Filed 8-23-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4520-43-P
DEPARTMENT OF LABOR Mine Safety and Health Administration 30 CFR Parts 57, 70, 72, and 75 [Docket No. MSHA-2014-0031] RIN 1219-AB86 Exposure of Underground Miners to Diesel Exhaust AGENCY:

Mine Safety and Health Administration, Labor.

ACTION:

Request for information; extension of comment period.

SUMMARY:

In response to requests from the public, the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) is extending the comment period on the Agency's request for information on Exposure of Underground Miners to Diesel Exhaust. This extension gives stakeholders additional time to evaluate the comments and testimony received thus far and submit information to the Agency.

DATES:

The comment period for the request for information published on June 8, 2016 (81 FR 36826), is extended. Comments must be received by midnight Eastern Standard Time on November 30, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

Submit comments and informational materials for the rulemaking record, identified by RIN 1219-AB86 or Docket No. MSHA-2014-0031, by one of the following methods:

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

Email: [email protected]

Mail: MSHA, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances, 201 12th Street South, Suite 4E401, Arlington, Virginia 22202-5452.

Hand Delivery or Courier: 201 12th Street South, Suite 4E401, Arlington, Virginia, between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. Sign in at the receptionist's desk on the 4th Floor East, Suite 4E401.

Fax: 202-693-9441.

Instructions: All submissions must include “RIN 1219-AB86” or “Docket No. MSHA-2014-0031.” Do not include personal information that you do not want publicly disclosed; MSHA will post all comments without change to http://www.regulations.gov and http://arlweb.msha.gov/currentcomments.asp, including any personal information provided.

Docket: For access to the docket to read comments received, go to http://www.regulations.gov or http://arlweb.msha.gov/currentcomments.asp. To read background documents, go to http://www.regulations.gov. Review the docket in person at MSHA, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances, 201 12th Street South, Arlington, Virginia, between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, except Federal Holidays. Sign in at the receptionist's desk in Suite 4E401.

Email Notification: To subscribe to receive an email notification when MSHA publishes rules in the Federal Register, go to http://www.msha.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Sheila A. McConnell, Director, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances, MSHA, at [email protected] (email), 202-693-9440 (voice); or 202-693-9441 (facsimile). These are not toll-free numbers.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

On June 8, 2016 (81 FR 36826), MSHA published a request for information on Exposure of Underground Miners to Diesel Exhaust. The request for information seeks input from the public that will help MSHA evaluate the Agency's existing standards and policy guidance on controlling miners' exposures to diesel exhaust to evaluate the effectiveness of the protection now in place to preserve miners' health.

On June 27, 2016, (81 FR 41486), MSHA published a notice in the Federal Register announcing the dates and locations for four public meetings on the request for information. MSHA held meetings on July 19, 21, and 26 and August 4, 2016. In response to requests from the public, MSHA is providing additional time for interested parties to comment. MSHA is extending the comment period from September 6, 2016, to November 30, 2016.

Dated: August 17, 2016. Joseph A. Main, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Mine Safety and Health.
[FR Doc. 2016-20396 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4520-43-P
DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY Financial Crimes Enforcement Network 31 CFR Parts 1010 and 1020 RIN 1506-AB28 Customer Identification Programs, Anti-Money Laundering Programs, and Beneficial Ownership Requirements for Banks Lacking a Federal Functional Regulator AGENCY:

Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”), Treasury.

ACTION:

Notice of proposed rulemaking.

SUMMARY:

FinCEN is issuing this proposed rule to implement section 326 of the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001 and to remove the anti-money laundering program exemption for banks that lack a Federal functional regulator, including, but not limited to, private banks, non-federally insured credit unions, and certain trust companies. The proposed rule would prescribe minimum standards for anti-money laundering programs for banks without a Federal functional regulator to ensure that all banks, regardless of whether they are subject to Federal regulation and oversight, are required to establish and implement anti-money laundering programs, and would extend customer identification program requirements and beneficial ownership requirements to those banks not already subject to these requirements.

DATES:

Written comments may be submitted to FinCEN on or before October 24, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

You may submit comments, identified by Regulatory Identification Number (RIN) 1506-AB28, by any of the following methods:

Federal E-rulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments. Include 1506-AB28 in the submission. Refer to Docket Number FINCEN-2014-0004.

Mail: Policy Division, Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, P.O. Box 39, Vienna, VA 22183. Include 1506-AB28 in the body of the text. Please submit comments by one method only. Comments submitted in response to this notice of proposed rulemaking (“NPRM”) will become a matter of public record. Therefore, you should submit only information that you wish to make publicly available.

Inspection of comments: FinCEN uses the electronic, Internet-accessible dockets at Regulations.gov as their complete, official-record docket; all hard copies of materials that should be in the docket, including public comments, are electronically scanned and placed there. Federal Register notices published by FinCEN are searchable by docket number, RIN, or document title, among other things, and the docket number, RIN, and title may be found at the beginning of the notice. In general, FinCEN will make all comments publicly available by posting them on http://www.regulations.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

The FinCEN Resource Center at (800) 767-2825 or email [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background A. Statutory Provisions

FinCEN exercises regulatory functions primarily under the Currency and Financial Transactions Reporting Act of 1970, as amended by the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001 (“USA PATRIOT Act”) (Pub. L. 107-56) and other legislation. This legislative framework is commonly referred to as the “Bank Secrecy Act” (“BSA”).1 The Secretary of the Treasury (“Secretary”) has delegated to the Director of FinCEN the authority to implement, administer, and enforce compliance with the BSA and associated regulations.2 Pursuant to this authority, FinCEN may issue regulations requiring financial institutions to keep records and file reports that “have a high degree of usefulness in criminal, tax, or regulatory investigations or proceedings, or in the conduct of intelligence or counterintelligence activities, including analysis, to protect against international terrorism.” 3 Additionally, FinCEN is authorized to impose anti-money laundering (“AML”) program requirements for financial institutions.4

1 The BSA is codified at 12 U.S.C. 1829b, 12 U.S.C. 1951-1959, 31 U.S.C. 5311-5314 and 5316-5332, and notes thereto, with implementing regulations at 31 CFR chapter X. See 31 CFR 1010.100(e).

2 Treasury Order 180-01 (Jul. 1, 2014).

3 31 U.S.C. 5311.

4 31 U.S.C. 5318(h).

Section 352 of the USA PATRIOT Act requires financial institutions to establish AML programs that, at a minimum, include: (1) The development of internal policies, procedures, and controls; (2) the designation of a compliance officer; (3) an ongoing employee training program; and (4) an independent audit function to test programs.5 Section 352 of the USA PATRIOT Act authorizes FinCEN, in consultation with the “appropriate” Federal functional regulator (using the definition of “Federal functional regulator” found in 15 U.S.C. 6809), to prescribe minimum standards for AML programs. In determining the appropriate scope and nature for this proposed rulemaking for financial institutions that are not directly regulated by any Federal functional regulator under any definition of that term, FinCEN considered the Federal functional regulators of similar institutions, including Federal bank supervisory authorities, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (“CFTC”), to be “appropriate” Federal functional regulators within the meaning of Section 352. In preparing this rule, FinCEN consulted with these regulators and in order to be certain of addressing all important issues, it also consulted with state bank supervisory authorities, and the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”), which, to date, has been the examining authority for all institutions regulated by FinCEN that do not have a Federal functional regulator.

5Id.

When prescribing minimum standards for AML programs, FinCEN must “consider the extent to which the requirements imposed [under section 352 of the USA PATRIOT Act] are commensurate with the size, location, and activities of the financial institutions to which [the standards] apply.” 6 In addition, FinCEN may “prescribe an appropriate exemption from a requirement [in the BSA] or regulations [issued under the BSA].” 7 FinCEN used this authority in 2002 to exempt temporarily certain financial institutions identified in section 352 from the requirement to establish an AML program.

6 Public Law 107-56, title III, Sec. 352(c), 115 Stat. 322.

7 31 U.S.C. 5318(a)(6).

Section 326 of the USA PATRIOT Act requires FinCEN to prescribe regulations that require financial institutions to establish programs for account opening that, at a minimum, include: (1) Verifying the identity of any person seeking to open an account, to the extent reasonable and practicable; (2) maintaining records of the information used to verify the person's identity, including name, address, and other identifying information; and (3) determining whether the person appears on any lists of known or suspected terrorists or terrorist organizations provided to the financial institution by any government agency.8 These programs are referred to as Customer Identification Programs (“CIPs”).

8 31 U.S.C. 5318(l). See Joint Final Rule—Customer Identification Programs for Banks, Savings Associations, Credit Unions and Certain Non-Federally Regulated Banks, 68 FR 25103 (May 9, 2003) (“The CIP must include procedures for determining whether the customer appears on any list of known or suspected terrorists or terrorist organizations issued by any Federal government agency and designated as such by Treasury in consultation with the Federal functional regulators.” To date, the Department of the Treasury has not designated any such list.).

When prescribing CIP regulations for financial institutions that engage in financial activities described in Section 4(k) of the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956, 12 U.S.C. 1843(k), FinCEN must prescribe such CIP regulations jointly with the Federal functional regulator (again using the definition of “Federal functional regulator” found in 15 U.S.C. 6809, but also including the CFTC) that is “appropriate” for the affected financial institutions.9 FinCEN generally considers the Federal functional regulator—if any—that actually regulates a financial institution to be the Federal functional regulator appropriate to promulgate regulations for such a financial institution.10 Specifically with respect to CIP rules, FinCEN has maintained publicly since 2003 that, for a CIP rule that applies to institutions not directly regulated by any Federal functional regulator under any definition of that term, it is not “appropriate” for any Federal agency to issue jointly such a CIP rule with FinCEN, given that no Federal agency has direct supervisory authority over such financial institutions comparable in its pervasiveness to the direct authority of the Federal functional regulators over their regulated financial institutions.11 Consistent with these long-held positions, FinCEN proposes to issue the CIP rule set forth here under its sole authority.

9 31 U.S.C. 5318(l)(4). The financial institutions subject to the CIP rule being proposed here engage in financial activities within the meaning of 12 U.S.C. 1843(k), in particular lending money and providing financial advisory services. See 12 U.S.C. 1843(k)(4)(A) and (C).

10See, e.g., 31 CFR 1020.210(a).

11See Notice of Proposed Rulemaking—Customer Identification Programs for Certain Banks Lacking a Federal Functional Regulator, 68 FR 25163 (May 9, 2003).

Section 312 of the USA PATRIOT Act requires each U.S. financial institution that establishes, maintains, administers, or manages a correspondent account or a private banking account in the United States for a non-U.S. person to subject such accounts to certain anti-money laundering measures.12 In particular, financial institutions must establish appropriate, specific, and, where necessary, enhanced due diligence policies, procedures, and controls that are reasonably designed to enable the financial institution to detect and report instances of money laundering through these accounts. In addition to the general due diligence requirements, which apply to all correspondent accounts for non-U.S. persons, section 5318(i)(2) specifies additional standards for correspondent accounts maintained for certain foreign banks. Section 5318(i) also sets forth minimum due diligence requirements for private banking accounts for non-U.S. persons. Specifically, a covered financial institution must take reasonable steps to ascertain the identity of the nominal and beneficial owners of, and the source of funds deposited into, private banking accounts, as necessary to guard against money laundering and to report suspicious transactions. The institution must also conduct enhanced scrutiny of private banking accounts requested or maintained for, or on behalf of, senior foreign political figures (which includes family members or close associates). Enhanced scrutiny must be reasonably designed to detect and report transactions that may involve the proceeds of foreign corruption.

12 These requirements are set forth and cross referenced in sections 1020.610 (cross-referencing to 31 CFR 1010.610) and 1020.620 (cross-referencing to 31 CFR 1010.620).

B. Regulatory Background

The following information describes the effect of certain previous rulemakings on banks, and specifically on banks lacking a Federal functional regulator.

AML Program Requirements

Most banks became subject to an AML program requirement pursuant to the BSA with FinCEN's issuance of an Interim Final Rule on April 29, 2002 (the “Interim Final Rule”).13 The Interim Final Rule stated that an institution regulated by a Federal functional regulator “shall be deemed to satisfy the requirements of 31 U.S.C. 5318(h)(1) if it implements and maintains an [AML] program that complies with the regulation of its Federal functional regulator governing such programs.” 14 “Federal functional regulator” is defined at 31 CFR 1010.100(r) to include each of the Federal banking agencies, as well as the SEC and the CFTC.

13See Interim Final Rule—Anti-Money Laundering Programs for Financial Institutions, 67 FR 21110 (Apr. 29, 2002). Since 1987, all federally insured depository institutions and credit unions have been required by their Federal regulators to have anti-money laundering programs “to assure and monitor compliance with the requirements of subchapter II of chapter 53 of title 31, United States Code,” but until the passage of the USA PATRIOT Act the requirement to implement such programs did not arise under a specific provision of the Bank Secrecy Act itself. See Final Rule—Procedures for Monitoring Bank Secrecy Act Compliance, 52 FR 2858 (Jan. 27, 1987).

14See 67 FR 21113. Since the time of the 2002 Interim Final Rule, FinCEN has reorganized its regulations under 31 CFR Chapter X. See Final Rule—Transfer and Reorganization of Bank Secrecy Act Regulations, 75 FR 65806 (Oct. 26, 2010). The cited AML program requirement can currently be found at 31 CFR 1020.210, with an added cross-reference to enhanced due diligence requirements imposed by rulemakings later than the Interim Final Rule.

The Interim Final Rule also deferred AML program requirements for certain financial institutions, including “private bankers.” 15 On November 6, 2002, FinCEN amended the Interim Final Rule.16 The amendment extended the deferral indefinitely,17 and included within the deferral not only private bankers, but any bank “that is not subject to regulation by a Federal functional regulator.” 18

15 “Private banker” is included in the list of financial institutions in the BSA. 12 U.S.C. 5312(a)(2)(C).

16See Amendment of Interim Final Rule—Anti-Money Laundering Programs for Financial Institutions, 67 FR 67547 (Nov. 6, 2002).

17See 31 CFR 1010.205(c). The deferral expires for a financial institution on the date the financial institution otherwise must comply with a final rule requiring the financial institution to establish an AML program.

18See 31 CFR 1010.205(b)(1)(vi) and (b)(2).

Although banks that lack a Federal functional regulator have not been required to establish an AML program, they are required to comply with many other BSA requirements. For example, banks that lack a Federal functional regulator still must file currency transaction reports (“CTRs”) and suspicious activity reports (“SARs”), and make and maintain certain records.19 In addition, banks that lack a Federal functional regulator must comply with 31 CFR 1010.630, which prohibits covered financial institutions from maintaining correspondent accounts for foreign shell banks and requires covered financial institutions to obtain and retain information on the ownership of foreign banks.20

19See 31 CFR 1010.306-315 (CTRs); 31 CFR 1020.320 (SAR rule for banks); 31 CFR 1010.410 (records to be made and retained by financial institutions).

20 Private banks, trust companies, and credit unions are “covered financial institutions” for purposes of 31 CFR 1010.630 and 31 CFR 1010.670, regardless of whether the institutions have a Federal functional Regulator. See 31 CFR 1010.605(e)(2). In contrast, rules requiring the implementation of due diligence programs for correspondent accounts and private banking accounts do not apply to private banks, apply only to “federally insured credit unions,” and certain trust companies that are “federally regulated and subject to an anti-money laundering program requirement.” See 31 CFR 1010.605(e)(1); 31 CFR 1010.610 (correspondent accounts); 31 CFR 1010.620 (private banking accounts).

Despite being subject to the various BSA obligations detailed above, banks that lack a Federal functional regulator have remained exempt from the AML program requirement since the Interim Final Rule. In contrast, FinCEN has already eliminated the exemption and promulgated AML program rules for other institutions that had been exempted under the Interim Final Rule, including insurance companies, certain loan or finance companies, and dealers in precious metals, precious stones, or jewels.

Customer Identification Program Requirements

CIP requirements were finalized, through a joint final rule, for banks, savings associations, credit unions, and certain non-Federally regulated banks on May 9, 2003. With this action, certain banks that lack a Federal functional regulator, namely, private banks, non-federally insured credit unions and certain trust companies, were required to comply with CIP requirements.21 On the same day, FinCEN published a notice of proposed rulemaking that would have imposed CIP requirements on all other state-regulated banks without a Federal functional regulator that were not included in the joint rule.22 This rulemaking was never finalized.

21See Joint Final Rule—Customer Identification Programs for Banks, Savings Associations, Credit Unions and Certain Non-Federally Regulated Banks, 68 FR 25090 (May 9, 2003). See 31 CFR 1020.220.

22See Notice of Proposed Rulemaking—Customer Identification Programs for Certain Banks Lacking a Federal Functional Regulator, 68 FR 25163 (May 9, 2003).

Beneficial Ownership Requirement

On May 11, 2016, FinCEN published a final rule (“CDD Rule”),23 to clarify and strengthen customer due diligence requirements for certain financial institutions, including federally regulated banks, requiring these financial institutions to identify and verify the identity of the beneficial owners of their legal entity customers, subject to certain exclusions and exemptions. The CDD Rule also amends the AML program requirements for these financial institutions. For purposes of regulatory consistency, FinCEN believes that it is appropriate that these requirements should apply to non-federally regulated banks as well, and accordingly proposes these requirements in this notice.

23See Final Rules, Customer Due Diligence Rules for Financial Institutions, 81 FR 29398 (May 11, 2016).

C. Categories of Banks Lacking a Federal Functional Regulator

FinCEN has identified the following categories of banks that lack a Federal functional regulator and is interested in identifying additional categories of such entities. However, no discussion of such entities should be thought to be exhaustive. This NPRM proposes that any entity that meets the definition of bank in 31 CFR 1010.100(d) would be required to establish an AML program.

State-Chartered Non-Depository Trust Companies

State-chartered non-depository trust companies are generally smaller than depository (or federally regulated non-depository) trust companies, and often provide estate planning and settlement and trust administration on a regional basis.24 Trust companies can provide services similar to investment advisory firms, including securities investment advisers, but are generally exempt from registration as investment advisers with the SEC.25 Trust companies also may provide services to clients similar to the services offered by other financial services firms. The number of state-chartered non-depository trust companies is difficult to determine; however, according to data available from state banking regulator Web sites, there are upwards of 347 of these entities.26

24 Certain trust companies and banks offering trust services are subject to safety and soundness regulation by one or more Federal banking agencies. See, e.g., 12 U.S.C. 1813(a)(2), (l)(2), and (p); 12 U.S.C. 1817(i).

25See 15 U.S.C. 80b-2(a)(2) and (11)(A).

26 We reviewed relevant information from the Web sites of state banking departments to determine the estimated number. See http://www.csbs.org/about/what/Pages/StateBankingDepartmentLinks.aspx.

Non-Federally Insured Credit Unions

Of the more than 6,273 credit unions nationwide, FinCEN understands that there are approximately 265 state-chartered credit unions that are not federally insured. Aside from their lack of a Federal functional regulator, these credit unions generally are similar in structure to federally insured credit unions.27

27 The statistics are based upon information provided in 2013 by the National Association of State Credit Union Supervisors. Federally chartered credit unions are insured by the NCUA through the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund. See 12 U.S.C. 1781.

Private Banks

A private bank is a bank chartered under state law that is owned by an individual or a partnership and generally provides financial services to individuals with high net worth.28 Although private banks have a long history in certain jurisdictions, including Switzerland and the United Kingdom, at least one private bank remains in the United States.

28 Private banks should be distinguished from private banking accounts. A “private banking account” for purposes of rules implementing section 312 of the USA PATRIOT Act includes any account—at any kind of bank—that is established for certain individuals who are not United States citizens, provided the account requires a minimum aggregate deposit of $1,000,000 or more and the account is administered by an officer, employee, or agent of the covered financial institution acting as a liaison with the direct or beneficial owner of the account. See 31 CFR 1010.605(m). The rules implementing section 312 of the USA PATRIOT Act do not apply to private banks per se.

Non-Federally Insured State Banks and Savings Associations

According to estimates available from state banking regulator Web sites, the number of state-chartered banks and savings and loan or building and loan associations without Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (“FDIC”) insurance is not more than 12.29 These banks function similarly to other federally insured banks, but are privately insured.

29See supra note 26.

International Banking Entities

International banking entities, or “entidades bancarias internacionales” (“EBIs”), are not federally insured, but are authorized by Puerto Rican and the U.S. Virgin Islands law to provide banking and other services to non-resident aliens. As of 2014, 33 EBIs were licensed by Puerto Rico.30

30See Commissioner of Financial Institutions of Puerto Rico http://www.ocif.gobierno.pr/documents/cons/EBI.pdf.>

D. Extension of AML Program, CIP and Beneficial Ownership Requirements The Anti-Money Laundering Program

The statutory mandate that all financial institutions establish anti-money laundering programs is a key element in the national effort to prevent and detect money laundering and the financing of terrorism. Banks without a Federal functional regulator may be as vulnerable to the risks of money laundering and terrorist financing as banks with one. This proposed rule would eliminate the present regulatory “gap” in AML coverage between banks with and without a Federal functional regulator. FinCEN expects uniform regulatory requirements for all banks to reduce the opportunity for criminals to seek out and exploit banks subject to less rigorous AML requirements.

FinCEN also believes that imposing an AML program requirement on banks that lack a Federal functional regulator would not be unduly burdensome, given that such banks already must comply with various BSA recordkeeping, reporting, and, in some cases, CIP requirements. In order to comply with these existing rules, banks lacking a Federal functional regulator have likely developed procedures and protocol comparable to what would be required under the proposed rule.

In 2005, uniform BSA examination procedures were issued through the first publication of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council Bank Secrecy Act/Anti-Money Laundering Examination Manual.31 FinCEN understands that uniform audits or examinations of policies, procedures, internal controls, reporting structures, transaction monitoring, and recordkeeping have caused many banks that lack a Federal functional regulator to adopt procedures similar to the ones that would be required under the proposed rule.

31 The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council is a formal interagency body consisting of the Federal banking agencies authorized to prescribe uniform standards for the examination of financial institutions. See http://www.ffiec.gov/. Regulators from forty-seven state regulators, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico conduct AML compliance inspections in conjunction with the Federal banking agencies. Similarly, credit unions are subject to joint supervision by the NCUA and their state supervisors, pursuant to a Document of Cooperation executed by the NCUA and the National Association of State Credit Union Supervisors.

Customer Identification Program

For the reasons of regulatory consistency and protection against systemic vulnerability discussed above in connection with AML programs, FinCEN believes that CIP should also apply to all banks (including all depository institutions chartered under state banking law, even if the charter was not for a credit union, trust company, or private bank), regardless of whether they are Federally regulated. The preamble of the final CIP rule said that it applied to “banks with a Federal functional regulator and to credit unions, trust companies, and private banks without a federal functional regulator.” However, on the same day that the final CIP rule was issued, FinCEN issued a follow-on Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to ensure that there would be no gaps in the scope of the CIP obligations as they apply to banks.32 Because this proposal was never finalized, FinCEN is also re-proposing changes that would explicitly require all banks that lack a Federal functional regulator to establish CIP.

32See supra note 22.

Beneficial Ownership Requirements

As noted above, the CDD Rule requires that federally regulated banks and certain other financial institutions identify, and verify the identity of, the beneficial owners of their legal entity customers, as set forth in section 1010.230.33 For purposes of regulatory consistency, FinCEN believes that this requirement should apply to non-federally regulated banks as well.

33 The CDD Rule is effective July 11, 2016 and applicable on and after May 11, 2018.

II. Section-by-Section Analysis

This notice proposes to amend chapter X by adding AML program requirements for banks that lack a Federal functional regulator, and extending CIP and beneficial ownership requirements to those banks not already subject to these requirements. These proposed changes include the following: (1) Amending the provision in § 1010.205 that exempts certain financial institutions from the requirement to establish an AML program; (2) amending the definition of covered financial institution in § 1010.605 so that non-federally regulated banks will be subject to the beneficial ownership requirements pursuant to the CDD Rule (as well as the requirements in §§ 1010.610 and 1010.620); (3) removing the substantive language in the definitions of bank and financial institution in part 1020, Rules for Banks, because there will no longer be a need to make distinctions from the definitions in part 1010's General Definitions; (4) imposing AML program requirements on banks that lack a Federal functional regulator and prescribing minimum standards for the AML programs; and (5) amending the CIP requirements to delete a specific requirement that until banks without a Federal functional regulator are subject to AML program requirements they must have their CIPs approved by their boards of directors. If the proposed changes are implemented, banks without a Federal functional regulator will be required to implement a written AML program approved by their boards of directors or by equivalent functional units within the banks.

A. Exempted Anti-Money Laundering Programs for Certain Financial Institutions

Section 1010.205 provides temporary exemptions for certain financial institutions from the requirement to establish an anti-money laundering program.34 The proposed amendments to 31 CFR 1010.205 reflect the removal of: (1) The exemption for private bankers (§ 1010.205(b)(1)(vi)); (2) the broader exemption for banks that lack a Federal functional regulator (§ 1010.205(b)(2)); and (3) the exemption for persons subject to supervision by a state banking authority (§ 1010.205(b)(3)).

34See 67 FR 21113 (Apr. 29, 2002), as amended at 67 FR 67549 (Nov. 6, 2002) and corrected at 67 FR 68935 (Nov. 14, 2002) (Treasury temporarily exempted private bankers and banks not subject to regulation by a Federal functional regulator from establishing an AML program).

B. General and Specific Definitions

General rules that apply to all industries appear in part 1010, and industry-specific rules are contained in other parts within chapter X. Because the definition of bank in part 1010 makes no distinctions as to whether a bank has a Federal functional regulator, there are no proposed changes to that definition of bank in § 1010.100(d).35 Likewise, there are no proposed changes to the general definition of financial institution in § 1010.100(t).36 Specific rules for banks are contained in part 1020, which includes definitions of both “bank” and “financial institution” specific to that part, to note a distinction in the application of AML program and CIP requirements between banks with a Federal functional regulator and those lacking one. FinCEN proposes to amend those definitions, as described below.

35 Bank is defined in 31 CFR 1010.100(d) as each agent, agency, branch, or office within the United States of any person doing business in one or more of the capacities listed: (1) A commercial bank or trust company organized under the laws of any state or of the United States; (2) A private bank; (3) A savings and loan association or a building and loan association organized under the laws of any state or of the United States; (4) An insured institution as defined in section 401 of the National Housing Act; (5) A savings bank, industrial bank or other thrift institution; (6) A credit union organized under the law of any state or of the United States; (7) Any other organization (except a money services business) chartered under the banking laws of any state and subject to the supervision of the bank supervisory authorities of a state; (8) A bank organized under foreign law; (9) Any national banking association or corporation acting under the provisions of section 25(a) of the Act of Dec. 23, 1913, as added by the Act of Dec. 24, 1919, ch. 18, 41 Stat. 378, as amended (12 U.S.C. 611-32).

36 31 CFR 1010.100(t) defines financial institution as each agent, agency, branch, or office within the United States of any person doing business, whether or not on a regular basis or as an organized business concern, in one or more of the capacities listed below: (1) A bank (except bank credit card systems); (2) A broker or dealer in securities; (3) A money services business as defined in § 1010.100(ff); (4) A telegraph company; (5) Casino; (6) Card club; (7) A person subject to supervision by any state or Federal bank supervisory authority; (8) A futures commission merchant; (9) An introducing broker in commodities; or (10) A mutual fund.

Customer Identification Program Requirement

The separate definition of bank in § 1020.100(b) reflects the fact that existing CIP requirements do not apply to all banks that lack a Federal functional regulator. The current definition of bank, for the purposes of 31 CFR 1020.220, is (1) A bank, as that term is defined in 31 CFR 1010.100(d), that is subject to regulation by a Federal functional regulator; and (2) A credit union, private bank, and trust company, as set forth in 31 CFR 1010.100(d) of this chapter, that does not have a Federal functional regulator.37

37See 31 CFR 1020.100(b).

This rulemaking proposes to remove existing § 1020.100(b), which would result in making all banks, regardless of whether they are subject to regulation by a Federal functional regulator, comply with CIP requirements.

Beneficial Ownership Requirement

The beneficial ownership requirement in the CDD Rule applies to covered financial institutions as defined in § 1010.605(e)(1). This definition includes several types of banks, all of which are federally regulated,38 as well as brokers and dealers in securities, futures commission merchants and introducing brokers, and mutual funds. In order to apply this requirement to non-federally regulated banks, this rulemaking proposes to amend the current definition of covered financial institution by replacing paragraphs (i) through (vii) of § 1010.605(e)(1) with the following, which includes all banks (whether or not federally regulated) that are subject to an AML program requirement “a bank required to have an anti-money laundering compliance program under the regulations implementing 31 U.S.C. 5318(h), 12 U.S.C. 1818(s), or 12 U.S.C. 1786(q)(1).”

38 These include (1) An insured bank (as defined in section 3(h) of the Federal Deposit Insurance Act (12 U.S.C. 1813(h)); (2) A commercial bank; (3) An agency or branch of a foreign bank; (4) A federally insured credit union; (5) A savings association; (6) A corporation acting under section 25A of the Federal Reserve Act; and (7) A trust bank or trust company that is federally regulated and is subject to an anti-money laundering program requirement.

Anti-Money Laundering Program Requirement

The definition of financial institution in § 1020.100(d) reflects the fact that existing AML program requirements are based on whether a bank is subject to regulation by a Federal functional regulator. The current definition of financial institution is (1) For the purposes of 31 CFR 1020.210, a financial institution is defined in 31 U.S.C. 5312(a)(2) or (c)(1) that is subject to regulation by a Federal functional regulator or a self-regulatory organization; (2) For the purposes of 31 CFR 1020.220, a financial institution is defined in 31 U.S.C. 5312(a)(2) or (c)(1).

This rulemaking proposes to remove existing § 1020.100(d)(1), which along with the proposed amendments to § 1020.210 described below, would result in requiring all banks, regardless of whether they are subject to regulation by a Federal functional regulator, to comply with the obligation to implement an AML program.39

39 We are also proposing to remove § 1020.100(d)(2). Due to the current definition of “financial institution” in § 1010.100(t), this broader definition of the term is no longer necessary.

C. AML Program Requirements

Section 1020.210 (as amended by the CDD Rule) sets forth the current AML program requirements for banks. This rulemaking proposes certain changes necessary to ensure that all banks, regardless of whether they are subject to Federal regulation and oversight, are required to establish and implement anti-money laundering programs. One proposed change concerns the title and structure of the section. Currently, the title reads: “Anti-money laundering program requirements for financial institutions regulated only by a Federal functional regulator, including banks, savings associations, and credit unions.” With the proposed change, the title would read: “Anti-money laundering program requirements for banks,” and it would contain one section for banks regulated only by a Federal functional regulator and another section for banks that lack a Federal functional regulator.

As proposed, § 1020.210(a) would be titled: “Anti-money laundering program requirements for banks regulated only by a Federal functional regulator, including banks, savings associations, and credit unions.” The existing language in § 1020.210 states that compliance by a financial institution regulated by a Federal functional regulator that is not subject to the regulations of a self-regulatory organization satisfies the AML program requirement under 31 U.S.C. 5318(h)(1) if its program complies with the requirements of §§ 1010.610 and 1010.620 and the regulations of its Federal functional regulator governing AML programs. FinCEN is unaware of any instance in which a bank is subject to regulations by a self-regulatory organization. Accordingly, FinCEN proposes to remove reference to such regulation from the regulatory text, by striking the words “that is not subject to the regulations of a self-regulatory organization.” This proposed change would appear in § 1020.210(a).40

40 The regulation text set forth is the text as amended by the CDD Rule, which is effective July 11, 2016 and applicable on and after May 11, 2018.

Proposed new § 1020.210(b) would be titled: “Anti-money laundering program requirements for banks lacking a Federal functional regulator including, but not limited to, private banks, non-federally insured credit unions, and certain trust companies.” New § 1020.210(b)(1) would require banks that lack a Federal functional regulator to establish and implement AML programs reasonably designed to assure ongoing compliance with the Bank Secrecy Act. Section 1020.210(b)(1)(ii)(E) would require compliance with due diligence requirements for correspondent accounts for foreign financial institutions (§ 1010.610) and for private banking accounts (§ 1010.620), and new § 1020.210(b)(1) also would prescribe the minimum standards necessary for an AML program.

With respect to minimum standards, proposed § 1020.210(b)(1)(ii)(A) would require that the AML program include a system of internal controls to assure ongoing compliance with the BSA. As part of implementing an AML program, FinCEN would expect banks that lack a Federal functional regulator to assess the money laundering and terrorist financing risks that are associated with their products, customers, distribution channels, and geographic locations. An assessment of customer-related information is a key component to a robust AML program, and banks must ensure that they obtain all the information necessary for their AML program requirements. For purposes of making the required risk assessment, banks have discretion to determine how best to collect the relevant customer information. FinCEN does not anticipate that this requirement will entail obtaining information not already obtained in the ordinary course of business. Policies, procedures, and internal controls also must be reasonably designed to ensure compliance with BSA requirements. Banks may conduct some of their operations through agents and third-party service providers. Some elements of the compliance program may best be performed by personnel of these entities, in which case it is permissible for banks to contract with such entities to assist them with implementation and operation of those aspects of its AML program. Any bank that contracts with an agent or third party to assist with aspects of its AML program, however, remains fully responsible for the effectiveness of the program, as well as ensuring that compliance examiners are able to obtain information and records relating to the AML program.

Proposed § 1020.210(b)(1)(ii)(B) would require that the program provide for independent testing to monitor and maintain an adequate program. A party external to the bank, such as an outside consultant or accountant, need not perform the testing. The testing may be conducted by an officer, employee, or group of employees, so long as the person or persons conducting the testing are independent of the person or group of persons primarily responsible for implementing the bank's AML program. The frequency of independent testing will depend upon the risks posed.41 Any recommendations that result from the independent testing should be implemented promptly or reviewed by senior management.

41See The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council, Bank Secrecy Act/Anti-Money Laundering Examination Manual, at 30 (2014) available at https://www.ffiec.gov/bsa_aml_infobase/documents/BSA_AML_Man_2014_v2.pdf (“[A] sound practice is for the bank to conduct independent testing generally every 12 to 18 months, commensurate with the BSA/AML risk profile of the bank.”).

Proposed § 1020.210(b)(1)(ii)(C) would require that the bank designate a person or persons who will be responsible for coordinating and monitoring day-to-day compliance with the AML program. The bank may have one individual, or the bank may designate multiple individuals to perform the function as a group. The person or persons should be competent and knowledgeable regarding BSA requirements and money laundering issues and risks, and should be empowered with full responsibility and authority to develop and enforce appropriate policies and procedures. The role of this function is to ensure that the program is implemented effectively and updated as necessary.

Proposed § 1020.210(b)(1)(ii)(D) would require that the program provide for training of appropriate persons. Employee training is an integral part of any AML program. In order to carry out their responsibilities effectively, employees must be trained in requirements under the BSA and money laundering risks generally, as well as the internal policies and procedures of the institution, so that red flags can be identified. Such training may be conducted by third parties or in-house, and may include computer-based training. Employees should receive periodic updates and refreshers to such training. The nature, scope, and frequency of training would depend upon the functions performed by employees.

Proposed § 1020.210(b)(1)(ii)(E) would require that the program include, at a minimum, appropriate risk-based procedures for conducting ongoing customer due diligence, to include, but not be limited to, understanding the nature and purpose of customer relationships for the purpose of developing a customer risk profile; and conducting ongoing monitoring to identify and report suspicious transactions and, on a risk basis, to maintain and update customer information. For purposes of this proposed paragraph, customer information would include information regarding the beneficial owners of legal entity customers (as defined in § 1010.230). FinCEN views this not as a new requirement, but as an explicit statement of the activities that are already required of covered financial institutions in order to monitor for, and detect and report, suspicious transactions.42

42 For a description of what is required by this new provision in the AML program rule for banks, see CDD Rule, 81 FR 29398, 29419-29421.

Proposed § 1020.210(b)(2) would require that an AML program be approved by the bank's board of directors or, if the bank does not have a board of directors, an equivalent function within the bank. Additionally, a bank would be required to make a copy of its AML program available to FinCEN or its designee upon request.43

43 An agency with authority delegated by FinCEN to examine the bank for compliance with the BSA would qualify as a designee of FinCEN.

D. CIP Requirements

Currently, the title reads: Section 1020.220, “Customer identification programs for banks, savings associations, credit unions, and certain non-Federally regulated banks.” With the proposed change, the title would read: “Customer identification program requirements for banks.” This proposed change recognizes that going forward CIP requirements would apply to all banks.

The proposed changes would also delete an unnecessary reference in § 1020.220 that stipulates that credit unions, private banks, and trust companies without a Federal functional regulator must seek board approval for their CIPs. With finalization of this proposal, banks lacking a Federal functional regulator would be required to implement a written AML program approved by their boards of directors. Since CIP would be part of their AML programs, which must be approved by their boards of directors, it would no longer be necessary to stipulate a separate approval of CIP in this section.

III. Request for Comment

FinCEN welcomes comment on all aspects of the proposed rule. In addition, FinCEN seeks comment on the following issues:

• Whether certain banks lacking a Federal functional regulator should be excluded from the proposed rule;

• Whether there are additional bank categories that should be included in the proposed rule;

• Whether non-federally regulated banks should be subject to the requirements contained in the CDD Rule;

• If the requirements contained in the CDD Rule and under Section 312 are imposed on non-federally regulated banks, what time period should be given to these institutions to implement such requirements; and

• Whether there are banks that are, in fact, regulated by self-regulatory organizations.

IV. Initial Regulatory Flexibility Act Analysis

When an agency issues a rulemaking proposal, the Regulatory Flexibility Act (“RFA”) requires the agency to “prepare and make available for public comment an initial regulatory flexibility analysis” that will “describe the impact of the proposed rule on small entities.” (5 U.S.C. 603(a).) Section 605 of the RFA allows an agency to certify a rule, in lieu of preparing an analysis, if the proposed rulemaking is not expected to have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

A. Reasons Why Action by the Agency Is Being Considered The Anti-Money Laundering Program

The statutory mandate that all financial institutions establish anti-money laundering programs is a key element in the national effort to prevent and detect money laundering and the financing of terrorism. Banks without a Federal functional regulator may be as vulnerable to the risks of AML and terrorist financing as banks with one. This proposed rule would eliminate the present regulatory “gap” in AML coverage between banks with and without a Federal functional regulator. FinCEN expects that uniform regulatory requirements for all banks will reduce the opportunity for criminals to seek out and exploit banks subject to less rigorous AML requirements.

Customer Identification Program

For the reasons of regulatory consistency and protection against systemic vulnerability discussed above in connection with AML programs, FinCEN believes that CIP should also apply to all banks (including all depository institutions chartered under state banking law, even if the charter was not for a credit union, trust company, or private bank), regardless of whether they are Federally regulated. In July 2002, FinCEN issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to ensure that there would be no gaps in the scope of the CIP obligations as they apply to banks. Because this proposal was never finalized, FinCEN is also re-proposing changes that would explicitly require all banks that lack a Federal functional regulator to establish CIP.

Beneficial Ownership Requirements

As noted above, the CDD Rule requires that from and after May 11, 2018, federally regulated banks and certain other financial institutions identify, and verify the identity of, the beneficial owners of their legal entity customers, as set forth in section 1010.230. For purposes of regulatory consistency, FinCEN believes that this requirement should apply to non-federally regulated banks as well.

B. Objectives of, and Legal Basis for, the Proposed Rules

Section 352 of the USA PATRIOT Act requires financial institutions to establish AML programs that, at a minimum, include: (1) The development of internal policies, procedures, and controls; (2) the designation of a compliance officer; (3) an ongoing employee training program; and (4) an independent audit function to test programs. In addition, the CDD Rule described above adds an explicit requirement to conduct ongoing monitoring.

Section 326 of the USA PATRIOT Act requires FinCEN to prescribe regulations that require financial institutions to establish programs for account opening that, at a minimum, include: (1) Verifying the identity of any person seeking to open an account, to the extent reasonable and practicable; (2) maintaining records of the information used to verify the person's identity, including name, address, and other identifying information; and (3) determining whether the person appears on any lists of known or suspected terrorists or terrorist organizations provided to the financial institution by any government agency.

Section 312 of the USA PATRIOT Act requires each U.S. financial institution that establishes, maintains, administers, or manages a correspondent account or a private banking account in the United States for a non-U.S. person to subject such accounts to certain anti-money laundering measures.

C. Small Entities Subject to the Proposed Rules

Based upon current data, for the purposes of RFA, FinCEN estimates that these rules will impact approximately 347 state chartered non-depository trust companies; 265 state-chartered credit unions that are not federally insured; 12 state-chartered banks and savings and loan or building and loan associations without FDIC insurance; and 115 EBIs licensed in Puerto Rico.44 FinCEN believes it is likely that most or all of the non-federally insured credit unions are small entities, and has no data on the size of the other entities subject to this rulemaking, and therefore assumes that many of them are small entities. Therefore, FinCEN concludes that the proposed rules will apply to a substantial number of small entities.

44 The Small Business Administration (“SBA”) defines a trust company as a small business if it has assets of $35.5 million or less. The SBA defines a depository institution (including a credit union) as a small business if it has assets of $550 million or less. FinCEN was unable to find an authoritative figure on the number of non-federally regulated depository institutions that would meet the definition of small entity.

D. Projected Reporting, Recordkeeping, and Other Compliance Requirements of the Proposed Rules

The proposed rules would prescribe minimum standards for AML programs for banks without a Federal functional regulator to ensure that all banks, regardless of whether they are subject to Federal regulation and oversight, are required to establish and implement written AML programs, including conducting ongoing customer due diligence, and to identify and verify the identity of the beneficial owners of their legal entity customers. The changes would also extend customer identification program requirements to those banks not already subject to these requirements.

Banks lacking a Federal functional regulator are currently required to comply with many existing requirements under the BSA. All banks, including those not subject to Federal regulation and oversight, are already required to file SARs, which necessarily requires a bank to establish a process to detect unusual activity. Certain banks lacking a Federal functional regulator—namely, private banks, non-federally insured credit unions, and certain trust companies—must maintain CIPs. Uniform audits at the state and Federal levels may have caused banks lacking a Federal functional regulator to adopt procedures similar to the ones that would be required under the AML program requirement of the proposed rule.

With respect to the beneficial ownership requirement, the proposed rule would require banks lacking a Federal functional regulator to obtain and maintain the identity of each beneficial owner from each legal entity customer that opens a new account, including name, address, date of birth and identification number. The financial institution would also be required to verify such identity by documentary or non-documentary methods and to maintain in its records for five years a description of (1) any document relied on for verification, (2) any such non-documentary methods and results of such measures undertaken, and (3) the resolution of any substantive discrepancies discovered in verifying the identification information.

The burden on a small non-federally regulated bank at account opening resulting from the final rule would be a function of the number of beneficial owners of each legal entity customer opening a new account, the additional time required for each beneficial owner, and the number of new accounts opened for legal entities by the small banks during a specified period.

None of the small businesses that commented on the CDD Rule's Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (“IRFA”) included an estimate of the amount of time to open a legal entity account; only one noted the number of such accounts it opens per year (70). As a result of the comments FinCEN received to the CDD Rule's-related regulatory impact assessment from other commenters, FinCEN concluded in its Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (“FRFA”) 45 that the estimated time for financial institutions to open accounts ranges from 20 to 40 minutes. Based on opening 471 new accounts for legal entities and an average wage of $16.77 for “new account clerks,” 46 this would result in an annual cost to a small bank of $2,550 to $5,100.47 FinCEN also notes that, even among small entities, the costs could be expected to vary substantially.48

45See 81 FR 29398, 29448 (May 11, 2016).

46See 81 FR 29398, 29448, n. 179, (May 11, 2016).

47 The estimated cost is based on the bank-reported 471 new accounts per year, additional time at account opening of 15 to 30 minutes, and the average wage of $16.77 for the financial industry “new account clerks” reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

48 For example, for the small bank that responded to the CDD IRFA and estimated that it opens 70 new accounts for business customers per year, the estimated costs would range from $380 to $760 per year. See 81 FR 29398, 29447-48 (May 11, 2016).

In addition, compliance with the beneficial ownership requirement would be expected to require additional training, information technology upgrades, and revisions to policies, procedures, and internal controls. A discussion of the estimated costs for these tasks for small entities is included in the CDD Rule FRFA referred to above.

E. Overlapping or Conflicting Federal Rules

FinCEN is unaware of any existing Federal regulations that would overlap or conflict with the amendments being proposed.

F. Consideration of Significant Alternatives

FinCEN has not identified any alternative means for bringing these categories of non-federally regulated banks into compliance with the same standards as all other banks in the United States. Were FinCEN to exempt small entities from this requirement, those entities would potentially be at greater risk of abuse by money launderers and other financial criminals.

With respect to the CDD pillar of the AML program rule, FinCEN considered several alternatives to that which is being proposed. As described in greater detail elsewhere,49 these alternatives included exempting small financial institutions below a certain asset or legal entity customer threshold from the requirements, as well as utilizing a lower (e.g., 10 percent) or higher (e.g., 50 percent) threshold for the minimum level of equity ownership for the definition of beneficial owner. FinCEN determined, however, that identifying the beneficial owner of a financial institution's legal entity customers and verifying that identity are necessary parts of an effective AML program. Were FinCEN to exempt small entities from this requirement, or entities that establish fewer than a limited number of accounts for legal entities, those financial institutions would be at greater risk of abuse by money launderers and other financial criminals, as criminals would identify institutions without this requirement. FinCEN also considered increasing the threshold for ownership of equity interests in the definition of beneficial ownership to 50 percent or more of the equity interests. Although this higher threshold would reduce the number of individuals whose identity would need to be verified from five to three, thus reducing marginally the onboarding time, this change would not impact the training or IT costs, and therefore, would not substantially reduce the overall costs of the rule and also would provide less useful information. After considering all the alternatives FinCEN has concluded that an ownership threshold of 25 percent is appropriate to maximize the benefits of the requirement while minimizing the burden.

49See 81 FR 29398, 29450 (May 11, 2016).

G. Questions for Comment

Please provide comment on any or all of the provisions of the proposed rule with regard to their economic impact on small entities, and what less burdensome alternatives, if any, FinCEN should consider.

V. Unfunded Mandates Act

Section 202 of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (“Unfunded Mandates Act”), Public Law 104-4 (March 22, 1995), requires that an agency prepare a budgetary impact statement before promulgating a rule that may result in expenditure by the State, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100 million or more in any one year. If a budgetary impact statement is required, section 202 of the Unfunded Mandates Act also requires an agency to identify and consider a reasonable number of regulatory alternatives before promulgating a rule. Taking into account the factors noted above and using conservative estimates of average labor costs in evaluating the cost of the burden imposed by the proposed regulation, FinCEN has determined that it is not required to prepare a written statement under section 202.

VI. Executive Orders 13563 and 12866

Executive Orders 13563 and 12866 direct agencies to assess 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. It has been determined that this is not a significant regulatory action for purposes of Executive Order 12866. Accordingly, a regulatory impact analysis is not required.

VII. Paperwork Reduction Act

The collection of information contained in this proposed rule is being submitted to the Office of Management and Budget for review in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3507(d)). Comments on the collection of information should be sent (preferably by fax (202-395-6974)) to the Desk Officer for the Department of the Treasury, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, Paperwork Reduction Project (1506), Washington, DC 20503, or by the Internet to [email protected], with a copy to FinCEN by mail or the Internet. Comments on the collection of information should be received by October 24, 2016.

An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act unless it displays a valid control number assigned by the Office of Management and Budget.

The collection of information in the proposed rule would be codified at 31 CFR 1020.210, 1020.220, and 1020.230. The information will be used by examining agencies to verify compliance with these provisions. The collection of information is mandatory. Records required to be retained under the BSA must be retained for five years.

Description of Recordkeepers: Banks without a Federal functional regulator, as defined in 31 CFR 1020.210 and 1020.220.

Estimated Number of Affected Institutions: 1,151.

Estimated Average Annual Burden Hours per Recordkeeper: Since this is a new requirement, the estimated average burden associated with the recordkeeping requirement in this proposed rule is 40 hours for development of a written program, and following the initial development, the program must be reviewed on an annual basis, to include a one (1) hour per year burden recognized for annual maintenance and update.

Estimated Total Annual Reporting Burden: 46,040 hours.

This burden will be added to the existing burden listed under OMB Control Number 1506-0035 currently titled AML Programs for insurance companies and loan and finance companies. The new title for this control number will be AML Programs for insurance companies, and residential mortgage lenders and originators, and banks that lack a Federal functional regulator. The new total burden will be 140,240 hours.

Questions for comment: (1) Whether the collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of FinCEN's mission, including whether the information will have practical utility; (2) Whether FinCEN's estimate of the burden of the collection of information is accurate; (3) What are ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; (4) What are ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology; (5) What are the estimates of capital or start-up costs to implement and then maintain an AML program; (6) How many banks that lack a Federal functional regulator are considered “small businesses” because the entities have less than $550 million in total assets; (7) What is the average number of employees or the average total annual salary expense for banks that lack a Federal functional regulator; and (8) What is the average number of employees dedicated to bank regulation compliance.

List of Subjects in 31 CFR Parts 1010 and 1020

Administrative practice and procedure, Banks, banking, Brokers, Currency, Foreign banking, Foreign currencies, Gambling, Investigations, Penalties, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Securities, Terrorism.

Authority and Issuance

For the reasons set forth in the preamble, parts 1010 and 1020 of chapter X of title 31 of the Code of Federal Regulations are proposed to be amended as follows:

PART 1010—GENERAL PROVISIONS 1. The authority citation for part 1010 continues to read as follows: Authority:

12 U.S.C. 1829b and 1951-1959; 31 U.S.C. 5311-5314 and 5316-5332; title III, sec. 314, Public Law 107-56, 115 Stat. 307.

§ 1010.205 [Amended]
2. Section 1010.205 is amended by: a. Removing paragraph (b)(1)(vi); b. Redesignating paragraphs (b)(1)(vii) through (ix) as paragraphs (b)(1)(vi) through (viii); and c. Removing and reserving paragraph (b)(2) and removing paragraph (b)(3). 3. Section 1010.605 is amended by: a. Revising paragraph (e)(1)(i) b. Removing paragraphs through (e)(1)(ii) through (vii); and b. Redesignating paragraphs (e)(1)(viii) through (x) as paragraphs (e)(1)(ii) through (iv).

The revision reads as follows:

§ 1010.605 Definitions.

(e) * * *

(i) A bank required to have an anti-money laundering compliance program under the regulations implementing 31 U.S.C. 5318(h), 12 U.S.C. 1818(s), or 12 U.S.C. 1786(q)(1);

PART 1020—RULE FOR BANKS 4. The authority citation for part 1020 continues to read as follows: Authority:

12 U.S.C. 1829b and 1951-1959; 31 U.S.C. 5311-5314 and 5316-5332; title III, sec. 314, Public Law 107-56, 115 Stat. 307.

§ 1020.100 [Amended]
5. Section 1020.100 is amended by: a. Removing paragraphs (b) and (d); and b. Redesignating paragraph (c) as paragraph (b). 6. Section 1020.210 is revised to read as follows:
§ 1020.210 Anti-money laundering program requirements for banks.

(a) Anti-money laundering program requirements for banks regulated only by a Federal functional regulator, including banks, savings associations, and credit unions. A bank regulated by a Federal functional regulator shall be deemed to satisfy the requirements of 31 U.S.C. 5318(h)(1) if it implements and maintains an anti-money laundering program that:

(1) Complies with the requirements of §§ 1010.610 and 1010.620 of this chapter;

(2) Includes, at a minimum:

(i) A system of internal controls to assure ongoing compliance;

(ii) Independent testing for compliance to be conducted by bank personnel or by an outside party;

(iii) Designation of an individual or individuals responsible for coordinating and monitoring day-to-day compliance;

(iv) Training for appropriate personnel; and

(v) Appropriate risk-based procedures for conducting ongoing customer due diligence, to include, but not be limited to:

(A) Understanding the nature and purpose of customer relationships for the purpose of developing a customer risk profile; and

(B) Conducting ongoing monitoring to identify and report suspicious transactions and, on a risk basis, to maintain and update customer information. For purposes of this paragraph, customer information shall include information regarding the beneficial owners of legal entity customers (as defined in § 1010.230); and

(3) Complies with the regulation of its Federal functional regulator governing such programs.

(b) Anti-money laundering program requirements for banks lacking a Federal functional regulator including, but not limited to, private banks, non-federally insured credit unions, and certain trust companies. (1) A bank lacking a Federal functional regulator shall be deemed to satisfy the requirements of 31 U.S.C. 5318(h)(1) if the bank establishes and maintains a written anti-money laundering program that:

(i) Complies with the requirements of §§ 1010.610 and 1010.620 of this chapter; and

(ii) Includes, at a minimum:

(A) A system of internal controls to assure ongoing compliance with the Bank Secrecy Act and the regulations set forth in 31 CFR chapter X;

(B) Independent testing for compliance to be conducted by bank personnel or by an outside party;

(C) Designation of an individual or individuals responsible for coordinating and monitoring day-to-day compliance;

(D) Training for appropriate personnel; and

(E) Appropriate risk-based procedures for conducting ongoing customer due diligence, to include, but not be limited to:

(1) Understanding the nature and purpose of customer relationships for the purpose of developing a customer risk profile; and

(2) Conducting ongoing monitoring to identify and report suspicious transactions and, on a risk basis, to maintain and update customer information. For purposes of this paragraph, customer information shall include information regarding the beneficial owners of legal entity customers (as defined in § 1010.230).

(2) The program must be approved by the board of directors or, if the bank does not have a board of directors, an equivalent governing body within the bank. The bank shall make a copy of its anti-money laundering program available to the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network or its designee upon request.

7. Amend § 1020.220 by revising the section heading and paragraph (a)(1) to read as follows:
§ 1020.220 Customer identification program requirements for banks.

(a) * * * (1) In general. A bank required to have an anti-money laundering compliance program under the regulations implementing 31 U.S.C. 5318(h), 12 U.S.C. 1818(s), or 12 U.S.C. 1786(q)(1) must implement a written Customer Identification Program (CIP) appropriate for its size and type of business that, at a minimum, includes each of the requirements of paragraphs (a)(1) through (5) of this section. The CIP must be a part of the anti-money laundering compliance program.

Jamal El-Hindi, Acting Director, Financial Crimes Enforcement Network.
[FR Doc. 2016-20219 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4810-02-P
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R08-OAR-2016-0377; FRL-9951-33-Region 8] Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; State of Wyoming; Emission Inventory Rule for 2008 Ozone NAAQS and Revisions to Incorporation by Reference AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Proposed rule.

SUMMARY:

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to approve State Implementation Plan (SIP) revisions submitted by the State of Wyoming on July 1, 2014. The submittal requests SIP revisions to the State's Incorporation by reference section as well as an administrative change in section numbering. The SIP also includes the addition of a section establishing requirements for the submittal of emission inventories from facilities or sources located in an ozone nonattainment area.

DATES:

Written comments must be received on or before September 26, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R08-OAR-2016-0377, 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:

Chris Dresser, Air Program, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 8, Mail Code 8P-AR, 1595 Wynkoop Street, Denver, Colorado 80202-1129, (303) 312-6385, [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

In the “Rules and Regulations” section of this Federal Register, the EPA is approving the State's SIP revision as a direct final rule without prior proposal because the agency views this as a noncontroversial SIP revision and anticipates no adverse comments. A detailed rationale for the approval is set forth in the preamble to the direct final rule.

If the EPA receives no adverse comments, the EPA will not take further action on this proposed rule. If the EPA receives adverse comments, the EPA will withdraw the direct final rule and it will not take effect. The EPA will address all public comments in a subsequent final rule based on this proposed rule.

The EPA will not institute a second comment period on this action. Any parties interested in commenting must do so at this time. For further information, please see the ADDRESSES section of this notice.

Please note that if the EPA receives adverse comment on an amendment, paragraph, or section of this rule and if that provision may be severed from the remainder of the rule, the EPA may adopt as final those provisions of the rule that are not the subject of an adverse comment. See the information provided in the Direct Final action of the same title which is located in the Rules and Regulations Section of this Federal Register.

Authority:

42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

Dated: August 11, 2016. Debra Thomas, Deputy Regional Administrator, Region 8.
[FR Doc. 2016-20316 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R05-OAR-2016-0169; FRL-9951-28-Region 5] Air Plan Approval; Indiana; RACM Determination for Indiana Portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton 1997 Annual PM2.5 Nonattainment Area AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Proposed rule.

SUMMARY:

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to approve the reasonably available control measures (RACM) and reasonably available control technology (RACT) analysis that Indiana submitted as part of their earlier attainment plan for the 1997 fine particulate matter (PM2.5) standard, in accordance with Indiana's request dated February 11, 2016. The RACM/RACT analysis addresses RACM and RACT for the Indiana portion of the Cincinnati-Hamilton nonattainment area for the 1997 PM2.5 standard. EPA is not proposing to act on the portions of the state implementation plan (SIP) revision that are unrelated to RACM/RACT. Other portions of the attainment plan have either been addressed or will be addressed in future rulemaking actions.

DATES:

Comments must be received on or before September 26, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R05-OAR-2016-0169 at http://www.regulations.gov or via email to [email protected] For comments submitted at Regulations.gov, follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or removed from Regulations.gov. For either manner of submission, 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. 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, please contact the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section. For 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:

Joseph Ko, Environmental Engineer, Attainment, Planning and Maintenance Section, Air Programs Branch (AR-18J), Environmental Protection Agency, Region 5, 77 West Jackson Boulevard, Chicago, Illinois 60604, (312) 886-7947, [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

In the Rules and Regulations section of this Federal Register, EPA is approving the state's SIP submittal as a direct final rule without prior proposal because the Agency views this as a noncontroversial submittal and anticipates no adverse comments. A detailed rationale for the approval is set forth in the direct final rule. If no adverse comments are received in response to this rule, no further activity is contemplated. If EPA receives adverse comments, the direct final rule will be withdrawn and all public comments received will be addressed in a subsequent final rule based on this proposed rule. EPA will not institute a second comment period. Any parties interested in commenting on this action should do so at this time. Please note that if EPA receives adverse comment on an amendment, paragraph, or section of this rule and if that provision may be severed from the remainder of the rule, EPA may adopt as final those provisions of the rule that are not the subject of an adverse comment. For additional information, see the direct final rule which is located in the Rules and Regulations section of this Federal Register.

Dated: August 9, 2016. Robert Kaplan, Acting Regional Administrator, Region 5.
[FR Doc. 2016-20311 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R03-OAR-2016-0368; FRL-9951-26-Region 3] Determination of Attainment by the Attainment Date for the 2008 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards; Pennsylvania; Pittsburgh-Beaver Valley AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Proposed rule.

SUMMARY:

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to determine that the Pittsburgh-Beaver Valley, Pennsylvania marginal ozone nonattainment area (the Pittsburgh Area) has attained the 2008 ozone national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) by the July 20, 2016 attainment date. This proposed determination is based on complete, certified, and quality assured ambient air quality monitoring data for the Pittsburgh Area for the 2013-2015 monitoring period. This proposed determination does not constitute a redesignation to attainment. This action is being taken under the Clean Air Act (CAA).

DATES:

Written comments must be received on or before September 26, 2016.

ADDRESSES:

Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R03-OAR-2016-0368 at http://www.regulations.gov, or via email to [email protected] For comments submitted at Regulations.gov, follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or removed from Regulations.gov. For either manner of submission, 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. 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, please contact the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section. For 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:

Maria A. Pino, (215) 814-2181, or by email at [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background A. Statutory Requirement—Determination of Attainment by the Attainment Date

Section 181(b)(2) of the CAA requires EPA to determine, within 6 months of an ozone nonattainment area's attainment date, whether that area attained the ozone standard by that date. Section 181(b)(2) of the CAA also requires that areas that have not attained the standard by their attainment deadlines be reclassified to either the next higher classification (e.g., marginal to moderate, moderate to serious, etc.) or to the classifications applicable to the areas' design values in Table 1 of 40 CFR 51.1103. CAA section 181(a)(5) provides a mechanism by which the EPA Administrator may grant a 1-year extension of an area's attainment deadline, provided that the relevant states meet certain criteria.

B. The Pittsburgh Area and Its Attainment Date

On July 18, 1997, EPA promulgated a revised ozone NAAQS of 0.08 parts per million (ppm), averaged over eight hours. 62 FR 38855. This standard was determined to be more protective of public health than the previous 1979 1-hour ozone standard. In 2008, EPA revised the 8-hour ozone NAAQS from 0.08 to 0.075 ppm (the 2008 ozone NAAQS). See 73 FR 16436 (March 27, 2008). In a May 21, 2012 final rule, the Pittsburgh Area was designated as marginal nonattainment for the more stringent 2008 ozone NAAQS, effective on July 20, 2012. 77 FR 30088. The Pittsburgh Area consists of Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Washington, and Westmoreland Counties in Pennsylvania. See 40 CFR 81.339.

In a separate rulemaking action, also published on May 21, 2012 and effective on July 20, 2012, EPA established the air quality thresholds that define the classifications assigned to all nonattainment areas for the 2008 ozone NAAQS (the Classifications Rule). 77 FR 30160. This rule also established December 31 of each relevant calendar year as the attainment date for all nonattainment area classification categories. Section 181 of the CAA provides that the attainment deadline for ozone nonattainment areas is “as expeditiously as practicable” but no later than the prescribed dates that are provided in Table 1 of that section. In the Classifications Rule, EPA translated the deadlines in Table 1 of CAA section 181 for purposes of the 2008 standard by measuring those deadlines from the effective date of the new designations, but extended those deadlines by several months to December 31 of the corresponding calendar year. Pursuant to a challenge of EPA's interpretation of the attainment deadlines, on December 23, 2014, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (D.C. Circuit) issued a decision rejecting, among other things, the Classifications Rule's attainment deadlines for the 2008 ozone nonattainment areas, finding that EPA did not have statutory authority under the CAA to extend those deadlines to the end of the calendar year. NRDC v. EPA, 777 F.3d 456, 464-69 (D.C. Cir. 2014). Accordingly, as part of the final SIP Requirements Rule for the 2008 ozone NAAQS (80 FR 12264, March 6, 2015), EPA modified the maximum attainment dates for all nonattainment areas for the 2008 ozone NAAQS, consistent with the D.C. Circuit's decision. The State Implementation Plan (SIP) Requirements Rule established a maximum deadline for marginal nonattainment areas of three years from the effective date of designation, or July 20, 2015, to attain the 2008 ozone NAAQS. See 80 FR at 12268; 40 CFR 51.1103.

In a final rulemaking action published on May 4, 2016, EPA determined that the Pittsburgh Area did not attain the 2008 ozone NAAQS by its July 20, 2015 attainment date, based on ambient air quality monitoring data for the 2012-2014 monitoring period. In that same action, EPA determined that the Pittsburgh Area qualified for a 1-year extension of its attainment date, as provided in section 181(a)(5) of the CAA and interpreted by regulation at 40 CFR 51.1107. The new attainment date for the Pittsburgh Area is July 20, 2016. See 81 FR 26697 (May 4, 2016).

II. EPA's Analysis of the Relevant Air Quality Data

Under EPA regulations at 40 CFR part 50, appendix P, the 2008 ozone NAAQS is attained at a monitoring site when the three-year average of the annual fourth highest daily maximum 8-hour average ambient air quality ozone concentration is less than or equal to 0.075 ppm. This three-year average is referred to as the design value. When the design value is less than or equal to 0.075 ppm at each ambient air quality monitoring site within the area, then the area is deemed to be meeting the NAAQS. The rounding convention under 40 CFR part 50, appendix P dictates that concentrations shall be reported in ppm to the third decimal place, with additional digits to the right being truncated. Thus, a computed three-year average ozone concentration of 0.0759 ppm or lower would meet the standard, but 0.0760 ppm or higher is over the standard.

EPA's determination of attainment is based upon data that has been collected and quality-assured in accordance with 40 CFR part 58 and recorded in EPA's Air Quality System (AQS) database. Ambient air quality monitoring data for the three-year period must meet a data completeness requirement. The ambient air quality monitoring data completeness requirement is met when the three-year average of the percent (%) of required monitoring days with valid ambient monitoring data is greater than 90%, and no single year has less than 75% data completeness, as determined according to appendix P of part 50. Tables 1 and 2 show the data completeness and ozone design values, respectively, for each monitor in the Pittsburgh Area for the years 2013-2015.

Table 1—2013-2015 Pittsburgh Area Ozone Monitor Data Completeness County Site ID Percent data completeness 2013-2015 average percent completeness Comment 2013 2014 2015 Allegheny 420030008 98 100 95 98 420030010 100 33 Site shut down in 2013.a 420030067 99 99 100 99 420031005 98 33 97 Site shut down in 2013.b 420031008 100 93 64 Site started 2014.b Armstrong 420050001 95 100 100 98 Beaver 420070002 98 96 97 97 420070005 96 95 93 95 420070014 89 99 94 94 Washington 421250005 98 100 97 98 421250200 98 98 100 98 421255001 100 98 94 97 421255200 99 99 66 Site shut down in 2015.a Westmoreland 421290006 98 38 45 Site shut down in July 2014.a 421290008 97 99 97 98 Notes: a The monitoring site shutdowns and startups are included in the Pennsylvania Department of the Environment's (PADEP's) July 2014 Annual Network Plan. PADEP submitted the monitoring plan to EPA on June 27, 2014, and EPA approved it on November 21, 2014. b The ozone monitor at monitoring site 420031005 was moved to monitoring site 420031008 in February 2014. The new location is about one quarter of a mile away from the previous location, and is at a similar elevation. The data from these sites will be combined to calculate a valid design value. This monitor move was included in the Allegheny County Health Department's (ACHD's) July 2014 monitoring plan, which ACHD submitted to EPA on July 1, 2014, and which EPA approved on November 21, 2014.

As shown in Table 1, several monitoring sites do not meet the completeness criteria set out in 40 CFR part 50, appendix P. However, the reasons for the completeness issues were either monitor shutdowns or startup, approved into PADEP's and ACHD's monitoring plans. Because three years of complete data is not possible at these monitoring sites, EPA does not look for valid design values at these sites. However, the circumstances are different for monitoring sites 420031005 and 420031008. The ozone monitor was moved from monitoring site 420031005 to monitoring site 420031008. These sites are within 0.25 miles of each other, and are at similar elevations. Therefore, EPA is able to consider the data at both monitoring sites as representing the same area, and can combine the data for these two locations to calculate a valid design value. When data from both locations is considered, the three-year average completeness is 97%.

Table 2—2013-2015 Pittsburgh Area 2008 Ozone Design Values County Site ID 4th highest daily maximum 2013 2014 2015 2013-2015 Design value
  • (ppm)
  • Allegheny 420030008 0.070 0.065 0.071 0.068 420030010 0.075 420030067 0.066 0.065 0.068 0.066 420031005 0.076 0.042 0.073 420031008 0.071 0.074 Armstrong 420050001 0.078 0.068 0.070 0.072 Beaver 420070002 0.072 0.069 0.070 0.070 420070005 0.072 0.070 0.067 0.069 420070014 0.066 0.066 0.063 0.065 Washington 421250005 0.064 0.065 0.072 0.067 421250200 0.067 0.064 0.069 0.066 421255001 0.071 0.064 0.071 0.068 421255200 0.063 0.062 0.045 Westmoreland 421290006 0.067 0.053 421290008 0.070 0.064 0.069 0.067 Note: Only valid design values for monitors meeting the completeness criteria are shown.

    Consistent with the requirements contained in 40 CFR part 50, EPA has reviewed the ozone ambient air quality monitoring data for the monitoring period from 2013 through 2015 for the Pittsburgh Area, as recorded in the AQS database. As shown in Table 2, all valid 2013-2015 design values are less than or equal to 0.075 ppm. Therefore, the Pittsburgh Area has attained the 2008 ozone NAAQS, considering 2013-2015 data.

    III. Proposed Action

    EPA evaluated ozone data from air quality monitors in the Pittsburgh Area in order to determine the area's attainment status under the 2008 ozone NAAQS. State and local agencies responsible for ozone air monitoring networks supplied and quality assured the data. All the monitoring sites with valid data had design values equal to or less than 0.075 ppm based on the 2013-2015 monitoring period. Considering that review, EPA has concluded that this area attained the 2008 ozone NAAQS based on complete, quality assured and certified data for the 2013-2015 ozone seasons. Thus, EPA proposes to determine, in accordance with its statutory obligations under section 181(b)(2)(A) of the CAA and the provisions of the SIP Requirements Rule (40 CFR 51.1103), that the Pittsburgh Area attained the 2008 ozone NAAQS by the applicable attainment date of July 20, 2016.

    This proposed determination of attainment does not constitute a redesignation to attainment. Redesignations require states to meet a number of additional criteria, including EPA approval of a state plan to maintain the air quality standard for 10 years after redesignation. EPA is soliciting public comments on the issues discussed in this document. These comments will be considered before taking final action.

    IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    This rulemaking action proposes to make a determination of attainment on the 2008 ozone NAAQS based on air quality and, if finalized, would not impose additional requirements. For that reason, this proposed determination of attainment:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    In addition, this proposed rule, proposing to determine that the Pittsburgh Area attained the 2008 ozone NAAQS by its July 20, 2016 attainment date, does not have tribal implications as specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000), because this proposed determination of attainment does not apply in Indian country located in the state, and EPA notes that it will not impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law.

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Ozone, Incorporation by reference, Intergovernmental relations, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    Authority:

    42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

    Dated: August 12, 2016. Shawn M. Garvin, Regional Administrator, Region III.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20313 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R08-OAR-2013-0145; FRL-9951-30-Region 8] Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; North Dakota; Revisions to Air Pollution Control Rules AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing approval of State Implementation Plan (SIP) revisions submitted by the State of North Dakota on January 28, 2013 and April 22, 2014. The revisions are to Article 33-15 “Air Pollution Control” rules of the North Dakota Administrative Code. The revisions include amendments to update the Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) rules and the definition of “volatile organic compounds”; to add particulate matter less than 2.5 microns in diameter (PM2.5) methods of measurement; to modify the PM2.5 state ambient air quality standard, permissible open burning rule, and permit fee processes; and, to remove permitting fees for sources that operate an air monitoring site. The revisions also make clarifying changes. This action is being taken under section 110 of the Clean Air Act (CAA).

    DATES:

    Written comments must be received on or before September 26, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R08-OAR-2013-0145 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.

    Docket: All documents in the docket are listed in the www.regulations.gov index. Although listed in the index, some information is not publicly available, e.g., CBI or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such as copyrighted material, will be publicly available only in hard copy. Publicly available docket materials are available either electronically in www.regulations.gov or in hard copy at the Air Program, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Region 8, 1595 Wynkoop Street, Denver, Colorado 80202-1129. The EPA requests that if at all possible, you contact the individual listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section to view the hard copy of the docket. You may view the hard copy of the docket Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., excluding federal holidays.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Jaslyn Dobrahner, Air Program, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Region 8, Mail Code 8P-AR, 1595 Wynkoop Street, Denver, Colorado 80202-1129, (303) 312-6252, [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 the 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 the 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, 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

    A. On January 28, 2013, the State of North Dakota submitted a SIP revision containing amendments to Article 33-15 Air Pollution Control rules. The amendments: Update the PSD rules; add PM2.5 methods of measurement; revise permit fee processing; remove permitting fees for sources that operate an air monitoring site; and make clarifying changes. The North Dakota State Health Council adopted the amendments on August 14, 2012 (effective January 1, 2013).

    B. On April 22, 2014, the State of North Dakota submitted a SIP revision containing amendments to Article 33-15 Air Pollution Control rules. The amendments: Update the PSD rules and the definition of “volatile organic compounds”; revise the PM2.5 state ambient air quality standard and permissible open burning rule; and clarify excess emissions reporting requirements. The North Dakota State Health Council adopted the amendments on February 11, 2014 (effective April 1, 2014).

    III. The EPA's Review of the State of North Dakota's January 28, 2013 and April 22, 2014 Submittals

    We evaluated North Dakota's January 28, 2013 and April 22, 2014 submittals regarding revisions to the State's Air Pollution Control rules. We propose to approve some of the revisions and not act on other revisions.

    A. January 28, 2013 SIP Submittal

    The State's January 28, 2013 SIP submittal includes the following types of amendments to the State's air quality rules: Revisions to update State-specific additions to the incorporation by reference of the PSD rules; revisions to add PM2.5 methods of measurement; revisions to remove permitting fees for sources that operate an air monitoring site; and a revision to streamline the administrative fee process. The revisions also make clarifying changes.

    The January 2013 submittal adds a sentence to 33-15-01-13.3, “[t]he provisions of this subsection do not apply to sources that are subject to monitoring requirements in chapter 33-15-21,” to clarify that the alternative monitoring requirements in this rule do not apply to sources that are required to comply with the acid rain rules and exempts sources subject to acid rain requirements in chapter 33-15-21, Acid Rain Program, from the continuous emission monitoring system (CEMS) failures requirements found in 33-15-01-13.3 of the General Provisions chapter. Instead, 33-15-21-09.1 requires that CEMS monitoring, recordkeeping, and reporting requirements found in 40 CFR part 75 and its appendices apply to sources subject to acid rain requirements. This revision is for clarification purposes, and we propose to approve it. Likewise, we propose to approve the State's revisions to 33-15-05-04.3 that indicate PM2.5 measurements must be made in accordance with 40 CFR 51, Appendix M, Recommended Test Methods for State Implementation Plans and clarifies the definition of PM10 determinations under the same method.

    The State revised section 33-15-14-02.13.c(4) by deleting “or are subject to a standard under chapter 33-15-22,” to clarify that sources subject to the national emission standards for hazardous air pollutants (40 CFR part 63) in chapter 33-15-22, Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants for Source Categories, do not need a permit to construct if they meet the exemption requirements found in 33-15-14-02.13. The State requested this revision to clarify that sources at minor facilities do not require a permit. Since the North Dakota SIP already exempts engine sources whose emissions are below certain thresholds (see 33-15-14-02.13(c)(1), (2), (3)) and also requires major hazardous air pollutant sources subject to maximum achievable control technology (MACT) to obtain a permit (see 33-15-22), we agree that this revision is for clarification purposes and propose to approve it.

    The State makes a number of revisions in their January 28, 2013 submittal to their PSD rules found in chapter 33-15-15; some of the revisions we approved in prior actions, while other revisions were superseded by subsequent SIP submittals. First, the State updates the incorporation by reference date in 33-15-15-01.2 for 40 CFR 52.21, paragraphs (a)(2) through (e), (h) through (r), (v), (w), (aa) and (bb) to as they exist on January 1, 2012. We acted on the approval of incorporating 40 CFR 52.21(b)(14)(i) through (iii); (b)(15)(i) and (ii); and paragraph (c) pertaining to major and minor source baseline dates and ambient air increments in our July 30, 2013 final rule (78 FR 45866) approving the State's demonstration that the North Dakota SIP meets the infrastructure requirements of the CAA for the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) promulgated for PM2.5 on July 18, 1997 and on October 17, 2006. In doing so, paragraphs (b)(14)(i) through (iii); (b)(15)(i) and (ii); and paragraph (c) were added to 40 CFR 52.1829 as paragraphs (c) and (d). We are proposing to not act on incorporating the remainder of 40 CFR 52.21 as they exist on January 1, 2012, because this revision is superseded by the revision in the State's April 22, 2014 submittal to incorporate the same portions of 40 CFR 52.21 as they existed on July 1, 2013.

    There are additional revisions in the State's January 28, 2013 PSD rules in 33-15-15-01.2. that we propose to approve. First, the State relocates 40 CFR 52.21(b)(50)(i)(c) and (b)(50)(i)(d) to correct numerical order. Second, the State revises 40 CFR 52.21(d) consistent with the federal rule at the same citation by changing “[n]o concentration of a contaminant shall exceed the ambient air quality standards in chapter 33-15-02 for these areas subject to regulation under this article and the national ambient air quality standards in all other areas of the United States” to “[n]o concentration of a contaminant shall exceed: (1) The concentration permitted under the national primary and secondary ambient air quality standards. (2) The concentration permitted by the ambient air quality standards in chapter 33-15-02.” Third, the State revises 40 CFR 52.21(k)(1) consistent with the federal regulations at 40 CFR 52.21(k)(1)(i) by changing “[a]ny ambient air quality standard in chapter 33-15-02 for those areas subject to regulation under this article and the national ambient air quality standards in all other areas of the United States; or” to “[a]ny national ambient air quality standard or any standard in chapter 33-15-02.” The State recognizes their current regulations inadvertently do not include (i) after 40 CFR 52.21(k)(1) and will revise the language to read 40 CFR 52.21(k)(1)(i) in a future submittal.1 Fourth, the State also revised 40 CFR 52.21(v)(2)(iv)(a) consistent with the federal rule at the same citation by adding “national ambient air quality standard or any” and deleting “regulation under this article and the national ambient air quality standards in all other areas of the United States.” We propose to approve all of these changes.

    1 Refer to docket #EPA-R08-OAR-2013-0145 for documentation.

    We also propose to approve in the January 28, 2013 submittal revisions to chapter 33-15-23, Fees, allowing billing statements to be sent to applicants before final determinations have been made (33-15-23-02.2.c) and removing the permit fee for sources that operate an air monitoring site (33-15-23-03.1). CAA section 110(a)(2)(E) requires that a state implementation plan provide assurances that the state will have, among other items, adequate funding to carry out the implementation plan. Sending billing statements earlier than currently required under the SIP impacts the timing of when the fees are billed and collected. Therefore, it is appropriate to propose to approve because the change impacts the timing. The deletion of the criteria that describe this category is approvable because under 33-15-23-03.2 North Dakota will continue to charge fees to sources based on actual costs incurred by the State for the following: (1) Observation of source or performance specification testing; and (2) audits of source operated ambient air monitoring networks.

    In this submittal, the State also made clarifying revisions to three other SIP provisions. First, the State modified the abbreviation of PM10 (33-15-01-05) by adding the phrase “less than or equal” and deleting the less than or equal to symbol. Second, the State moved and modified language related to agricultural practices and fugitive emissions from chapter 33-15-17 Restriction of Fugitive Emission to chapter 33-15-03 Restriction of Emissions of Visible Air Contaminants (the State deleted from 33-15-17-02.6 “[a]gricultural activities related to the normal operations of a farm shall be exempt from the requirements of this section. However, agricultural practices such as tilling of land, application of fertilizers, and the harvesting of crops shall be managed in such a manner as to minimize dust from becoming airborne,” and then added the following sentence to 33-15-03-04.5 “[h]owever, agricultural practices such as tilling of land, application of fertilizers, harvesting of crops, and other activities shall be managed in such a manner as to minimize dust from becoming airborne”). In doing this the State modified the existing SIP by removing the exemption and requirement related to agricultural activities and fugitive dust under chapter 33-15-17, Restriction of Fugitive Emissions, and adding the same requirement related to agricultural activities and fugitive dust to chapter 33-15-03, Restriction of Emission of Visible Air Contaminants. We view these changes as non-substantive, SIP-strengthening, and clarifying because it removes an exemption and moves a requirement to a related area in the SIP. Third, the State inserted a reference to the exceptions found in 33-15-03-04 to the restrictions on the emission of visible air contaminants in chapter 33-15-03 Restriction of Emissions of Visible Air Contaminants into 33-15-17-02.4, which has the effect of referring the reader to exceptions already located within another chapter of the State's rules, which we characterize as a clarifying revision. We propose to approve all of these as clarifying, SIP-strengthening, and non-substantive revisions.

    Finally, we are not acting on the revision to 33-15-01-04 as this revision to the incorporation by reference date is superseded by a revision in the April 2014 submittal. We are also not acting on revisions to 33-15-03-04.4 and 33-15-05-01.2a(1) to remove improper exemptions from emissions limitations as we acted on these previously (79 FR 63045). We will act on revisions to 33-15-14-02.1, 33-15-14-02.5.a and 33-15-15-01-.2 in a future rulemaking and thus are not acting on these revisions at this time.

    B. April 22, 2014 SIP Submittal

    The State's April 22, 2014 SIP submittal includes the following types of amendments to the State's air quality rules: Revisions to update the dates of incorporation by reference of the (1) PSD rules, and (2) the definition of “volatile organic compounds”; revisions to lower the PM2.5 State ambient air quality standard; revisions to clarify the permissible open burning rule; a revision that clarifies that the required excess emissions reporting requirements are for sources that operate continuous emission monitors; and a revision that removes a category of fees.

    The CAA requires the regulation of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) for various purposes. For example, tropospheric ozone, commonly known as smog, is formed when VOC and nitrogen oxides (NOX) react in the atmosphere in the presence of sunlight. Thus, because of the harmful health effects of ozone, the EPA and state governments limit the amount of VOC—organic compounds of carbon—that can be released into the atmosphere. Section 302(s) of the CAA specifies that the EPA has the authority to define the meaning of “VOC,” and hence what compounds shall be treated as VOC for regulatory purposes. The EPA defines VOCs at 40 CFR 51.100(s) and VOC exclusions, determined to have negligible photochemical reactivity, at 51.100(s)(1). In its January 2013 submittal, the State updates 33-15-01-04, Definitions, to include the incorporation by reference of 40 CFR 51.100(s) as it exists on January 1, 2012. Subsequently, in its April 2014 submittal, the State updates 33-15-01-04, Definitions, again to include the incorporation by reference of 40 CFR 51.100(s) as it exists on July 1, 2013. The April 2014 submittal supersedes the January 2013 submittal, thus we are proposing to approve the April 2014 revision because it incorporates by reference the EPA's rule provisions.

    The CAA also requires the EPA to set National Ambient Air Quality Standards (40 CFR part 50) for pollutants considered harmful to public health and the environment and identifies two types of national ambient air quality standards: Primary standards provide public health protection, including protecting the health of “sensitive” populations such as asthmatics, children, and the elderly; and Secondary standards provide public welfare protection, including protection against decreased visibility and damage to animals, crops, vegetation, and buildings. In 2012 (78 FR 3086), the EPA revised the primary (health-based) annual PM2.5 standard by lowering the level from 15 micrograms per cubic meter (μg/m3) to 12.0 μg/m3 so as to provide increased protection against health effects associated with long- and short-term exposures (including premature mortality, increased hospital admissions and emergency department visits, and development of chronic respiratory disease). Accordingly, the State's April 2014 submittal revises the PM2.5 primary standard in Table 1. Ambient Air Quality Standards of chapter 33-15-02 from 15.0 μg/m3 to match the federal standard of 12.0 μg/m3. We propose to approve this revision because it is consistent with the federal standard.

    In addition, we propose to approve revisions in the April 2014 submittal that revise 33-15-04-02.2.a to require that any type of permissible burning listed in 33-15-04-02.1 will not create “air pollution” as defined by the State in 33-15-04 (33-15-04-02.2.a); and to delete the existing SIP requirement in 33-15-04-02.2.a (73 FR 30308), that prohibited permissible burning listed in 33-15-04-02.1 from creating a public nuisance (“No public nuisance is or will be created”). We propose to approve these revisions because they strengthen the SIP by prohibiting open burning that creates air pollution where “one or more air contaminants in such quantities and duration as is or may be injurious to human health, welfare, or property or animal or plant life, or which unreasonably interferes with the enjoyment of life or property.”

    We also propose to approve the clarification to the applicability of excess emissions reporting and recordkeeping requirements for continuous emission monitoring requirements (33-15-06-05.1). We propose to approve this revision because it clarifies the existing SIP provision (58 FR 54041) and explains that the emission monitoring requirements referenced in 33-15-06-05.1 are those performed for continuous emission monitoring (adding the phrase “in accordance with section 33-15-06-04”).

    In the April 2014 submittal, the State also revised the incorporation by reference date of 40 CFR 52.21 into the state regulations to July 1, 2013 (33-15-15-01.2). As previously discussed in III.A., we approved the incorporation of 40 CFR 52.21(b)(14)(i) through (iii); (b)(15)(i) and (ii); and paragraph (c) pertaining to major and minor source baseline dates and ambient air increments in our July 30, 2013 final rule (78 FR 45866) by adding paragraphs (c) and (d) to 40 CFR 52.1829. We propose to approve the State's revision of the incorporation by reference date to July 1, 2013 because it references our regulations, and in doing so, propose to delete paragraphs (c) and (d) in 40 CFR 52.1829 as they would no longer be needed and would be duplicative if retained. The State also added the reference to “title” before the federal regulation citation in this section (first paragraph), and as this is for clarification purposes, we propose to approve this addition.

    We are proposing to approve the State's deletion of the criteria for the “Monitor” category (33-15-23-03.01) from the SIP. These criteria explain the “Monitor” fee is a charge that applies to minor sources that is “in addition to the annual fee for any source operating a continuous emission monitor system (CEMS) or an ambient monitoring site.” The State's January 2013 SIP submittal indicates that this fee is no longer being charged.2 Thus, removal of the “Monitor” category corresponds to the State's revision in their January 2013 submittal (removing the annual fee for minor sources that operate an emission monitor or ambient air quality monitoring site), which we propose to approve in section III.A.

    2 April 2014 State SIP Submittal, PDF page 14.

    Finally, we are not acting on the State's revision to 33-15-03-05 and will instead take action on this revision in a future rulemaking.

    IV. What action is the EPA taking?

    For the reasons expressed in III.A. and III.B., the EPA is proposing to approve the following revisions, shown in Table 1, to the State's Air Pollution Control rules. We are also proposing to not act on several other revisions, shown in Table 2, for the reasons discussed in III.A. and III.B. and summarized below.

    Table 1—List of North Dakota Revisions That the EPA Is Proposing To Approve Revised sections in January 28, 2013 and April 22, 2014 submissions proposed for approval January 28, 2013 submittal: 33-15-01-05; 33-15-01-13.3; 33-15-03-04.5; 33-15-05-04.3; 33-15-14-02.13.c(4); 33-15-15-01.2 †; 33-15-17-02.4; 33-15-17-02.6; 33-15-23-02.2.c; 33-15-23-03.1. April 22, 2014 submittal: 33-15-01-04; 33-15-02, Table 1.; 33-15-04-02.2.a; 33-15-06-05.1; 33-15-15-01.2; 33-15-23-03. † Except for the incorporation by reference date in the first paragraph and the revision associated with 40 CFR 52.21(l)(1). Table 2—List of North Dakota Revisions That the EPA Is Proposing To Take No Action On Revised section Revision
  • superseded by April 22, 2014 submittal
  • Revision
  • acted on in
  • 79 FR 63045
  • Revision will be acted on
  • in a future
  • submittal
  • Revised Sections in January 28, 2013 Submission Proposed for No Action 33-15-01-04 x 33-15-03-04.4 x 33-15-05-01.2a(1) x 33-15-14-02.1 x 33-15-14-02.5.a x 33-15-15-01.2 ‡ x 33-15-15-01.2 §  x Revised Section in April 22, 2014 Submission Proposed for No Action 33-15-03-05 x ‡ Only the revision to the incorporation by reference date in the first paragraph. § Only the revision associated with 40 CFR 52.21(l)(1).
    V. 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 North Dakota Administrative Code as described in section IV. of this preamble. The EPA has made, and will continue to make, these materials generally available through www.regulations.gov and/or at the EPA Region 8 Office (please contact the person identified in the “For Further Information Contact” section of this preamble for more information).

    VI. 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, the 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; 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, October 4, 1993);

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    The SIP is not approved to apply on any Indian reservation land or in any other area where the EPA or an Indian tribe has demonstrated that a tribe has jurisdiction. In those areas of Indian Country, the rule does not have tribal implications 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: August 11, 2016. Debra H. Thomas, Acting Regional Administrator, Region 8.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20320 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 62 [EPA-R02-OAR-2016-0088; FRL 9951-23-Region 2] Approval and Promulgation of State Plans for Designated Facilities and Pollutants; Virgin Islands; Sewage Sludge Incinerators AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposes to approve the Clean Air Act (CAA) section 111(d)/129 negative declaration for the Government of the United States Virgin Islands, for existing sewage sludge incinerator (SSI) units. This negative declaration certifies that existing SSI units subject to sections 111(d) and 129 of the CAA do not exist within the jurisdiction of the United States Virgin Islands. The EPA is accepting the negative declaration in accordance with the requirements of the CAA.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before September 26, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R02-OAR-2016-0088 to 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:

    Edward J. Linky, Environmental Protection Agency, Air Programs Branch, 290 Broadway, New York, New York 1007-1866 at 212-637-3764 or by email at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    In the final rules section of this Federal Register, the EPA is approving the Virgin Islands' negative declaration submitted December 1, 2015 as a direct final rule without prior proposal because the Agency views this as a noncontroversial revision amendment and anticipates no adverse comments to this action.

    A detailed rationale for the approval is set forth in the direct final rule. If no adverse comments are received in response to this action, no further activity is contemplated in relation to this action. If the EPA receives adverse comments, the direct final rule will be withdrawn and all public comments received will be addressed in a subsequent final rule based on this proposed action. The EPA will not institute a second comment period on this action. Any parties interested in commenting on this action should do so at this time. For additional information, see the direct final rule which is located in the rules section of this Federal Register.

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 62

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

    Dated: August 8, 2016. Judith A. Enck, Regional Administrator, Region 2.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20304 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 217 [Docket No. 160405311-6664-01] RIN 0648-BF95 Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Rehabilitation of the Jetty System at the Mouth of the Columbia River: Jetty A, North Jetty, and South Jetty, in Washington and Oregon AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule; request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS has received a request from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Portland District (Corps) for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to the rehabilitation of Jetty System at the mouth of the Columbia River (MCR): North Jetty, South Jetty, and Jetty A, in Washington and Oregon between May 1, 2017 and April 30, 2022. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting comments on its proposal to issue regulations and subsequent Letters of Authorization (LOA) to the Corps to incidentally harass marine mammals.

    DATES:

    Comments and information must be received no later than September 26, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments on this document, identified by NMFS-2014-0144, by either of the following methods:

    Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Go to: www.regulations.gov, enter NOAA-NMFS-2014-0144 in the “Search” box, click the “Comment Now!” icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments.

    Mail: Submit written comments to Jolie Harrison, Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910.

    Comments regarding any aspect of the collection of information requirement contained in this proposed rule should be sent to NMFS via one of the means stated here and to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, NEOB-10202, Office of Management and Budget (OMB), Attn: Desk Office, Washington, DC 20503, [email protected]

    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 to http://www.regulations.gov without change. All Personal Identifying Information (for example, name, address, etc.) voluntarily submitted by the commenter may 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).

    An electronic copy of the application, containing a list of references used in this document, and the Environmental Assessment (EA) may be obtained by writing to the address specified above, telephoning the contact listed below (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT), or visiting the internet at: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental.htm. To help NMFS process and review comments more efficiently, please use only one method to submit comments.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Rob Pauline, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, (301) 427-8401.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    Sections 101(a)(5)(A) and (D) of the MMPA (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.) direct the Secretary of Commerce to allow, upon request, the incidental, but not intentional, taking of small numbers of marine mammals by U.S. citizens who engage in a specified activity (other than commercial fishing) within a specified geographical region if certain findings are made and either regulations are issued or, if the taking is limited to harassment, a notice of a proposed authorization is provided to the public for review.

    Authorization for incidental takings shall be granted if NMFS finds that the taking will have a negligible impact on the species or stock(s), will not have an unmitigable adverse impact on the availability of the species or stock(s) for subsistence uses (where relevant), and if the permissible methods of taking and requirements pertaining to the mitigation, monitoring and reporting of such takings are set forth. NMFS has defined “negligible impact” in 50 CFR 216.103 as “an impact resulting from the specified activity that cannot be reasonably expected to, and is not reasonably likely to, adversely affect the species or stock through effects on annual rates of recruitment or survival.”

    Except with respect to certain activities not pertinent here, the MMPA defines “harassment” as: “any act of pursuit, torment, or annoyance which (i) has the potential to injure a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild [Level A harassment]; or (ii) has the potential to disturb a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild by causing disruption of behavioral patterns, including, but not limited to, migration, breathing, nursing, breeding, feeding, or sheltering [Level B harassment].”

    Summary of Request

    On February 13, 2015, NMFS received an application from the Corps for the taking of marine mammals incidental to the rehabilitation of the Jetty System at the MCR in Washington and Oregon. On June 9, 2015, NMFS received a revised application. NMFS determined that the application was adequate and complete on June 12, 2015. NMFS issued an incidental harassment authorization (IHA) to the Corps on August 31, 2015 (80 FR 53777, September 8, 2015) to cover pile installation at Jetty A which is valid from May 1, 2016 through April 30, 2017. The Corps proposes to conduct additional work under a Letter of Authorization (LOA) that may incidentally harass marine mammals. A notice of receipt was published in the Federal Register on October 26, 2015 (80 FR 65214). Activities would include pile repairs and removal actions at Jetty A, pile installation at North Jetty, and pile installation and surveys at South Jetty. A revised application including an updated marine mammal monitoring plan was submitted by the Corps on January 15, 2016 and deemed acceptable on January 30, 2016.

    Description of the Specified Activity Overview

    The Corps is seeking a LOA for continuation of work begun on Jetty A under an IHA issued by NMFS that expires on April 30, 2017. Remaining work at Jetty A that may need to be completed under the LOA would include pile maintenance and pile removal of a barge offloading facility at that jetty. The following work on the North and South Jetties would be covered under the proposed LOA. The scheduled repair and head stabilization of the North Jetty would require pile installation, maintenance and removal for construction of a single barge offloading facility. The interim repair and head determination of the South Jetty would require pile installation and maintenance and removal of two offloading facilities, one near the tip of the South Jetty and another at a sandy plain southwest of the Columbia River and east of the South Jetty known as the Clatsop Spit.

    Dates and Duration

    The current IHA, for which take has been authorized, is valid from May 1, 2016, through April 30, 2017. The LOA would be valid from May 1, 2017, through April 30, 2022. The work season generally extends from April through October, with extensions, contractions, and additional work windows outside of the summer season varying by weather patterns. To avoid the presence of Southern Resident killer whales, the Corps will prohibit pile installation or removal for offloading facilities from October 1 until May1 because that is the killer whales' primary feeding season when they may be present at the MCR plume. Installation and removal would occur from May 1 to September 30 each year.

    Specific Geographic Region

    This activity will take place at the three MCR jetties in Pacific County, Washington, and Clatsop County, Oregon. These are Jetty A, North Jetty and South Jetty. Work will also be conducted near the Clatsop Spit off of the South Jetty. See Figure 1 in the application for a map of the MCR Jetty system and surrounding areas.

    Detailed Description of Activities

    There are a number of steps involved in the planned multi-year effort to rehabilitate the MCR Jetty System. This notice will focus only on those components of the project under the MMPA. Additional detailed information about the project in its entirety is contained in the application which may be found at: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental/construction.htm.

    Construction of a single offloading facility at Jetty A, a single facility at the North Jetty and two additional facilities at the South Jetty will be necessary to transport materials to these specific project locations. Jetty A pile installation is covered under the existing IHA. The proposed LOA will likely cover remaining pile installation, pile maintenance and pile removal at Jetty A depending on how much work is accomplished under the current IHA. The proposed LOA would cover pile installation and removal of one facility at North Jetty and two at South Jetty, including the Clatsop Spit location. In addition, all work related to pedestrian surveys of the South Jetty that could result in visual disturbance to pinnipeds will be covered under the proposed LOA.

    The scheduled program of repair and rehabilitation priorities are described in detail in Section 1 of the Corps' LOA application. The proposed sequence and timing for work under the LOA at the three MCR jetties includes:

    1. The Jetty A scheduled repairs and head stabilization task will be covered under the current IHA. This would include pile installation related to construction of an offloading facility as well as construction and stone placement. There will be at least one season of in-water work but two seasons are likely to be required to complete these activities. The second season of pile maintenance and removal would occur in 2017 and be covered under the proposed LOA.

    2. The North Jetty scheduled repair and head stabilization task would occur under the proposed LOA and include pile installation and removal at an offloading facility. Construction and placement would occur from 2017 through 2019 as this task will require three placement seasons.

    3. The South Jetty interim repair and head determination task would occur under the proposed LOA and would include pile installation and removal at two facilities with one being on the trunk near the head and the other at Clatsop Spit. This task would require four placement seasons running from 2018 through 2021.

    Installation and removal of piles with a vibratory hammer would introduce sound waves into the MCR area intermittently for up to 7 years (depending on funding streams and construction sequences). In terms of actual on-the-ground work it is possible, but unlikely, that driving could occur at multiple facilities on the same day. For the purposes of this LOA, NMFS will be assuming that driving will occur only at a single facility on any given day.

    Construction of all four offloading facilities combined will require up to 96 wood or steel piles and up to 373 sections of Z-piles, H-piles, and sheet pile to retain rock fill. A vibratory hammer will be used for pile installation due to the soft sediments (sand) in the project area and only untreated wood will be used, where applicable. No impact driving will be necessary under this LOA. The piles will be located within 200 ft (60.96 m) of each jetty structure. The presence of relic stone may require locating the piling further from the jetties so that use of this method is not precluded by the existing stone. The dolphins, Z- and H-piles would be composed of either untreated timber or steel piles installed to a depth of approximately 15 to 25 ft (4.5—7.6 m) below grade in order to withstand the needs of offloading barges and heavy construction equipment. Because vibratory hammers will be used in areas with velocities greater than 1.6 ft (0.49 m) per second, the need for hydroacoustic attenuation is not an anticipated issue.

    Pile installation is assumed to occur for about 10 hours a day, with a total of approximately 15 piles installed per day. Each offloading facility would have about 25 percent of the total piles mentioned. As noted above, up to 96 piles could be installed, and up to 373 sections of sheet pile to retain rock fill. This is a total of 469 initial installation and 469 removal events, over the span of about 67 days. In order to round the math, NMFS has assumed 68 days, so that each of the four offloading facilities would take about 17 days total for installation and removal. The current IHA covers 17 days of work at Jetty A, which leaves 51 days of work for the three remaining offloading facilities at the North and South Jetties. However, a second season of work at the Jetty A facility is likely. Therefore, NMFS will assume that only ten days of Jetty A-related work will be completed under the existing IHA, resulting in seven days that will need to be covered under the proposed LOA. Additionally, pedestrian surveys on South Jetty outside of the construction seasons are expected to take six additional days. A total of 64 days of work will be required, consisting of 51 days associated with activities at the North and South Jetties, seven days of remaining work at Jetty A and six days of pedestrian surveys at South Jetty.

    Piles would be a maximum diameter of 24 inches and would only be installed by vibratory driving method. The possibility also exists that smaller diameter piles may be used but for this analysis it is assumed that 24 inch piles will be driven.

    Description of Marine Mammals in the Area of the Specified Activity

    Marine mammals known to occur in the Pacific Ocean offshore at the MCR include whales, orcas, dolphins, porpoises, sea lions, and harbor seals. Most cetacean species observed by Green and others (1992) occurred in Pacific slope or offshore waters (600 to 6,000 feet in depth). Harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) and gray whales (Eschrichtius robustus) were prevalent in shelf waters less than 600 ft (182 m) in depth. Killer whales (Orcinus orca) are known to feed on Chinook salmon at the MCR, and humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) may transit through the area offshore of the jetties. The marine mammal species potentially present in the activity area are shown in Table 1.

    Pinniped species that occur in the vicinity of the jetties include Pacific harbor seals (Phoca vitulina richardsi), California sea lions (Zalophus californianus), and Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus). A haulout used by all of these species is located on the open ocean side of the South Jetty.

    In the species accounts provided here, we offer a brief introduction to the species and relevant stock. We also provide available information regarding population trends and threats and describe any information regarding local occurrence.

    Table 1—Marine Mammal Species Potentially Present in the Project Area Species Stock(s)
  • abundance
  • estimate 1
  • ESA* Status MMPA** Status Frequency of
  • occurrence 3
  • Killer Whale (Orcinus orca) Eastern N. Pacific, Southern Resident Stock 82 Endangered Depleted and Strategic Infrequent/ Rare. Killer Whale (Orcinus orca) Eastern N. Pacific, West Coast Transient Stock 243 Non-depleted Rare. Gray Whale (Eschrichtius robustus) Eastern North Pacific Stock, (Pacific Coast Feed Group) 20,990 (197) Delisted/ Recovered (1994) Non-depleted Rare. Humpback Whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) California/Oregon/Washington Stock 1918 Endangered Depleted and Strategic Rare. Harbor Porpoise (Phocoena phocoena) Northern Oregon/Washington Coast Stock 21,487 Non-depleted Likely. Steller Sea Lion (Eumetopias jubatus) Eastern U.S. Stock/DPS*** 60,131-74,448 Delisted/ Recovered (2013) Depleted and Strategic 2 Likely. California Sea Lion (Zalophus californianus) U.S. Stock 296,750 Non-depleted Likely. Harbor Seal (Phoca vitulina richardii) Oregon and Washington Stock 4 24,732 Non-depleted Seasonal. 1 NOAA/NMFS 2015 marine mammal stock assessment reports at http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/sars/species.htm. 2 May be updated based on the recent delisting status. 3 Frequency defined here in the range of: • Rare—Few confirmed sightings, or the distribution of the species is near enough to the area that the species could occur there. • Infrequent—Confirmed, but irregular sightings. • Likely—Confirmed and regular sightings of the species in the area year-round. • Seasonal—Confirmed and regular sightings of the species in the area on a seasonal basis. 4 Data is 8 years old. No current abundance estimates exist. * ESA = Endangered Species Act. ** MMPA = Marine Mammal Protection Act. *** DPS = Distinct population segment.
    Cetaceans Killer Whale

    During construction of the project, it is possible that two killer whale stocks, the Eastern North Pacific Southern Resident and Eastern North Pacific West Coast transient stocks could be in the nearshore vicinity of the MCR. However, the Corps is limiting the installation work window to on or after May 1 in order to avoid exposure of Southern Resident killer whales (Orcinus orca) and will avoid installation or removal after September 30. As such, number of either West Coast transient or Southern Resident killer whales present in the project area will be decreased because the selected work window is not their primary feeding season.

    Since the first complete census of this stock in 1974, when 71 animals were identified, the number of Southern Resident killer whales has fluctuated annually. Between 1974 and 1993 the Southern Resident stock increased approximately 35 percent, from 71 to 96 individuals (Ford et al., 1994), representing a net annual growth rate of 1.8 percent during those years. Following the peak census count of 99 animals in 1995, the population size has fluctuated and currently stands at 82 animals as of the 2013 census (Carretta et al., 2014).

    The Southern Resident killer whale population consists of three pods, designated J, K, and L pods, that reside from late spring to fall in the inland waterways of Washington State and British Columbia (NMFS 2008a). During winter, pods have moved into Pacific coastal waters and are known to travel as far south as central California. Winter and early spring movements and distribution are largely unknown for the population. Sightings of members of K and L pods in Oregon (L pod at Depoe Bay in April 1999 and Yaquina Bay in March 2000, unidentified Southern Residents at Depoe Bay in April 2000, and members of K and L pods off of the Columbia River) and in California (17 members of L pod and four members of K pod at Monterey Bay in 2000; L pod members at Monterey Bay in March 2003; L pod members near the Farallon Islands in February 2005 and again off Pt. Reyes in January 2006) have considerably extended the southern limit of their known range (NMFS 2008a). Sightings of Southern Resident killer whales off the coast of Washington, Oregon, and California indicate that they are utilizing resources in the California Current ecosystem in contrast to other North Pacific resident pods that exclusively use resources in the Alaskan gyre system (NMFS 2008a).

    During the 2011 Section 7 Endangered Species Act (ESA) consultation for Southern Resident killer whales, NMFS indicated these whales are known to feed on migrating Chinook salmon in the Columbia River plume during the peak salmon runs in March through April. Anecdotal evidence indicates that killer whales were historically regular visitors in the vicinity of the estuary but have been less common in current times (Wilson 2015). There is low likelihood of them being in close proximity to any of the pile installation locations because it is not their peak feeding season, and there would be minimal overlap of their presence during the peak summer construction season. To further avoid any overlap with Southern Resident killer whales' use during pile installation, the Corps would limit the pile installation window to start on or after May 1 and end on September 30 of each year to avoid peak adult salmon runs. Recent information, however, indicates that Southern Resident killer whales may be present in the area after May 1. Because it may prove difficult to differentiate Southern Resident from transient killer whales, the Corps has agreed to shut down operations any time killer whales are observed in the Level B harassment zone between May 1 and July 1. It is assumed that all killer whales observed after July 1 are transients and any takes will be recorded as such. Southern Resident killer whales were listed as endangered under the ESA in 2005, and, consequently, the stock is automatically considered as a “strategic” stock under the MMPA. This stock was considered “depleted” under the MMPA prior to its 2005 listing under the ESA.

    The West Coast transient stock ranges from Southeast Alaska to California. Preliminary analysis of photographic data resulted in the following minimum counts for transient killer whales belonging to the West Coast transient stock (NOAA 2013b). From 1975 to 2012, 521 individual transient killer whales have been identified. Of these, 217 are considered part of the poorly known “outer coast” subpopulation and 304 belong to the well-known “inner coast” population. However, of the 304, the number of whales currently alive is not certain. A recent mark-recapture estimate that does not include the outer coast subpopulation or whales from California for the west coast transient population resulted in an estimate of 243 in 2006. This estimate applies to the population of West Coast transient whales that occur in the inside waters of southeastern Alaska, British Columbia, and northern Washington. Given that the California transient numbers have not been updated since the publication of the catalogue in 1997, the total number of transient killer whales reported above should be considered as a minimum count for the West Coast transient stock (NOAA 2014a).

    For this project, it is possible only the inner-coast species would be considered for potential exposure to acoustic effects. However, they are even less likely to be in the project area than Southern Resident killer whales, especially outside of the peak salmon runs. The Corps is avoiding pile installation work during potential peak feeding timeframes in order to further reduce the potential for acoustic exposure. It is possible, however, that West Coast transients come in to feed on the pinniped population hauled out on the South Jetty. The West Coast transient stock of killer whales is not designated as “depleted” under the MMPA nor are they listed as “threatened” or “endangered” under the ESA. Furthermore, this stock is not classified as a strategic stock under the MMPA.

    Gray Whale

    During summer and fall, most gray whales in the Eastern North Pacific stock feed in the Chukchi, Beaufort and Northwestern Bering Seas. An exception is the relatively small number of whales (approximately 200) that summer and feed along the Pacific coast between Kodiak Island, Alaska and northern California (Carretta et al., 2014), also known as the Pacific Coast Feeding Group. The minimum population estimate for the Eastern North Pacific stock using the 2006/2007 abundance estimate of 19,126 and its associated coefficient of variation (CV) of 0.071 is 18,017 animals. In probability theory and statistics, the CV, also known as relative standard deviation (RSD), is a standardized measure of dispersion of a probability distribution or frequency distribution. The minimum population estimate for Pacific Coast Feeding Group gray whales is calculated as the lower 20th percentile of the log-normal distribution of the 2010 mark-recapture estimate, or 173 animals (Carretta et al., 2014). If gray whales were in the vicinity of MCR, the Pacific Coast Feeding Group would be the most likely visitor. Anecdotal evidence indicates they have been seen at MCR but are not a common visitor as they mostly remain in the vicinity of the offshore shelf-break (Griffith 2015). In 1994, the Eastern North Pacific stock of gray whales was removed from the Endangered Species List as it was no longer considered “endangered” or “threatened” under the ESA. NMFS has not designated gray whales as “depleted” under the MMPA. The Eastern North Pacific gray whale stock is not classified as “strategic” under the MMPA.

    Humpback Whale

    According to the 2013 Pacific Marine Mammal Stock Assessments Report (Appendix 3), the estimated population of the humpback whale California/Oregon/Washington stock is about 1,918 animals (NOAA 2014a). There are at least three separate stocks of humpback whales in the North Pacific, of which one population migrates and feeds along the west coast of the United States. This population winters in coastal waters of Mexico and Central America and migrates to areas ranging from the coast of California to southern British Columbia in summer/fall (Carretta et al., 2010). Within this stock, regional abundance estimates vary among the feeding areas. Average abundance estimates ranged from 200 to 400 individuals for southern British Columbia/northern Washington, and 1,400 to 1,700 individuals for California/Oregon (Calambokidis et al., 2012).

    There is a high degree of site fidelity in these feeding ranges with almost no interchange between these two feeding regions. Humpback whales forage on a variety of crustaceans, other invertebrates, and forage fish. In their summer foraging areas, humpback whales tend to occupy shallow, coastal waters. In contrast, during their winter migrations, humpback whales tend to occupy deeper waters further offshore and are less likely to occupy shallow, coastal waters.

    Humpback whales are sighted off the Washington and Oregon coasts regularly (Carretta et al., 2010, Lagerquist and Mate 2002, Oleson et al., 2009). Humpback whales are known to predictably forage an average of 22 mi (35.4 km) offshore of Grays Harbor, Washington during spring and summer months (Oleson et al., 2009). Grays Harbor is approximately 45 mi (72.4 km) north of the project site. Oleson et al. (2009) documented 147 individual humpback whales foraging off Grays Harbor from 2004 to 2008, and foraging whales (1-19 whales sighted per day) were sighted on 50 percent of the days surveyed (22 of 44 survey days). Anecdotally, humpback whales are regularly spotted in areas about 15 (22.14 km) to 20 miles (32.18 km) offshore of MCR (Griffith 2015).

    The Corps has limited fine-scale information about humpback whale foraging habits and space use along the Washington coast and does not have specific fine-scale information for the project area. Based on the available information, humpback whales may occur within 4.6 mi (7.4 km) of the MCR jetties or 8.6 mi (13.84 km) of shore (where in-water sound from pile driving activities may be audible) given both their general tendency to occupy shallow, coastal waters when foraging, and the available information on their fine-scale use of a proximate location.

    Note that in September 2015, humpback whales were spotted near the Astoria-Megler Bridge located 14 mi (22.53 km) from where the river meets the Pacific Ocean. This was thought to be an unusual occurrence. Their presence at that time may have been due to existing El Niño conditions that drove whales closer to shore in search of food (Wilson 2015). As of March 2016, NOAA determined that El Niño conditions are in decline (Becker 2016). As such, sightings that far up river are less likely to occur. Based on this information, humpback whales are likely to pass through and may forage intermittently in the project area offshore of the Jetty system.

    Harbor Porpoise

    The harbor porpoise inhabits temporal, subarctic, and arctic waters. In the eastern North Pacific, harbor porpoises range from Point Barrow, Alaska, to Point Conception, California. Harbor porpoise primarily frequent coastal waters and occur most frequently in waters less than 328 ft (100 m) deep (Hobbs and Waite 2010). They may occasionally be found in deeper offshore waters.

    Harbor porpoise are known to occur year-round in the inland transboundary waters of Washington and British Columbia and along the Oregon/Washington coast. Aerial survey data from coastal Oregon and Washington, collected during all seasons, suggest that harbor porpoise distribution varies by depth. Although distinct seasonal changes in abundance along the west coast have been noted, and attributed to possible shifts in distribution to deeper offshore waters during late winter, seasonal movement patterns are not fully understood. Harbor porpoises are sighted regularly at the MCR (Griffith 2015, Carretta et al., 2014).

    According to the online database, Ocean Biogeographic Information System, Spatial Ecological Analysis of Megavertebrate Populations (Halpin et al., 2009), West Coast populations have more restricted movements and do not migrate as much as East Coast populations. Most harbor porpoise groups are small, generally consisting of less than five or six individuals, though for feeding or migration they may aggregate into large, loose groups of 50 to several hundred animals. Behavior tends to be inconspicuous, compared to most dolphins, and they feed by seizing prey which consists of a wide variety of fish and cephalopods, ranging from benthic or demersal.

    The Northern Oregon/Washington coast stock of harbor porpoise inhabits the waters near the proposed project area. The population estimate for this stock is calculated at 21,847 with a minimum population estimate of 15,123 (Carretta et al., 2014).

    Harbor porpoise are not listed as “depleted” under the MMPA, listed as “threatened” or “endangered” under the ESA, or classified as “strategic.”

    Pinnipeds Steller Sea Lion

    The Steller sea lion is a pinniped and the largest of the eared seals. Steller sea lion populations that primarily occur east of 144° W (Cape Suckling, Alaska) comprise the Eastern Distinct Population Segment (DPS), which was de-listed and removed from the Endangered Species List on November 4, 2013 (78 FR 66140). This stock is found in the vicinity of MCR. The population west of 144° W longitude comprises the Western DPS, which is listed as endangered, based largely on over-fishing of the seal's food supply.

    The range of the Steller sea lion includes the North Pacific Ocean rim from California to northern Japan. Steller sea lions forage in nearshore and pelagic waters where they are opportunistic predators. They feed primarily on a wide variety of fishes and cephalopods. Steller sea lions use terrestrial haulout sites to rest and take refuge. They also gather on well-defined, traditionally used rookeries to pup and breed. These habitats are typically gravel, rocky, or sand beaches; ledges, or rocky reefs (Allen and Angliss, 2013).

    The MCR South Jetty is used by Steller sea lions for hauling out and is not designated critical habitat. Use occurs chiefly at the concrete block structure at the terminus, or head of the jetty, and at the emergent rubble mound made up of the eroding jetty trunk near the terminus.

    Previous monthly averages between 1995 and 2004 for Steller sea lions hauled-out at the South Jetty head ranged from about 168 to 1,106 animals. More recent data from Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) from 2000-2014 reflects a lower frequency of surveys, and numbers ranged from zero animals to 606 Steller sea lions (ODFW 2014). More frequent surveys by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) for the same time frame (2000-2014) put the monthly range at 177 to 1,663 animals throughout the year. According to ODFW (2014), most counts determined that animals remain at or near the jetty tip.

    Steller sea lions are present all year, in varying abundances, as is shown in the Corps application. Abundance is typically lower as the summer progresses when adults are at the breeding rookeries. Steller sea lions are most abundant in the vicinity during the winter months and tend to disperse elsewhere to rookeries during breeding season between May and July. Abundance increases following the breeding season. However, this is not always true as evidenced by a flyover count of the South Jetty on May 23, 2007, where 1,146 Steller sea lions were observed on the concrete block structure and none on the rubble mound (ODFW 2007). Those counts represent a high-use day on the South Jetty. According to ODFW (2014), during the summer months it is not uncommon to observe between 500-1,000 Steller sea lions present per day, the majority of which are immature males and females (no pups or pregnant females). All population age classes, and both males and females, use the South Jetty to haul out. Only non-breeding individuals are typically found on the jetty during May-July, and a greater percentage of juveniles are present. It is likely that there is turnover in sea lions using the jetty. That is, the 100 or so sea lions hauled out one week might not be the same individuals hauled out the following week. Recent ODFW and WDFW survey data continue to support these findings. The most recent estimate from 2007 put the populations between 63,160 and 78,198 (Allen and Angliss, 2013). The best available information indicates the eastern stock of Steller sea lion increased at a rate of 4.18 percent per year between 1979 and 2010 based on an analysis of pup counts in California, Oregon, British Columbia and Southeast Alaska (Allen and Angliss, 2013).

    California Sea Lion

    California sea lions are found along the west coast from the southern tip of Baja California to southeast Alaska. They breed mainly on offshore islands from Southern California's Channel Islands south to Mexico. Non-breeding males often roam north in spring foraging for food. Since the mid-1980s, increasing numbers of California sea lions have been documented feeding on fish along the Washington coast and—more recently—in the Columbia River as far upstream as Bonneville Dam, 145 mi (233 km) from the river mouth. The population size of the U.S. stock of California sea lions is estimated at 296,750 animals (Carretta et al., 2014). As with Steller sea lions, according to ODFW (2014) most counts of California sea lions are also concentrated near the tip of the jetty, although animals sometimes haul out about halfway down the jetty. Survey information (2007 and 2014) from ODFW indicates that California sea lions are relatively less prevalent in the Pacific Northwest during June and July; though in the months just before and after their absence several hundred may be observed using the South Jetty. More frequent WDFW surveys (2014) indicate greater numbers in the summer, and use remains concentrated to fall and winter months. Nearly all California sea lions in the Pacific Northwest are sub-adult and adult males (females and young generally stay in California). Again, turnover of sea lions using the jetty is likely (ODFW 2014).

    California sea lions in the United States are not listed as “endangered” or “threatened” under the Endangered Species Act, classified as “depleted” under the MMPA, or listed as “strategic” under the MMPA.

    Harbor Seal

    Harbor seals range from Baja California, north along the western coasts of the United States, British Columbia and southeast Alaska, west through the Gulf of Alaska, Prince William Sound, and the Aleutian Islands, and north in the Bering Sea to Cape Newenham and the Pribilof Islands. They haul out on rocks, reefs, beaches, and drifting glacial ice and feed in marine, estuarine, and occasionally fresh waters. Harbor seals generally are non-migratory, with local movements associated with tides, weather, season, food availability, and reproduction. Harbor seals do not make extensive pelagic migrations, though some long distance movement of tagged animals in Alaska (559mi/900 km) and along the west coast of the United States (up to 341 mi/550 km) have been recorded. Harbor seals have also displayed strong fidelity to haulout sites (Carretta et al., 2014).

    The 1999 harbor seal population estimate for the Oregon/Washington Coast stock was about 24,732 animals. However, the data used was over eight years old; and therefore, there are no current abundance estimates. Harbor seals are not considered to be “depleted” under the MMPA or listed as “threatened” or “endangered” under the ESA. The Oregon/Washington coast stock of harbor seals is not classified as a “strategic” stock under the MMPA (Carretta et al., 2014).

    Further information on the biology and local distribution of these species can be found in the Corps application available online at: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental/construction.htm and the NMFS Marine Mammal Stock Assessment Reports, which may be found at: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/species/.

    Potential Effects of the Specified Activity on Marine Mammals and Their Habitat

    This section includes a summary and discussion of the ways that stressors, (e.g. pile driving) and potential mitigation activities, associated with the MCR jetty rehabilitation project, may impact marine mammals and their habitat. The Estimated Take by Incidental Harassment section will include an analysis of the number of individuals that are expected to be taken by this activity. The Estimated Take by Incidental Harassment section, together with the Proposed Mitigation section will also draw conclusions regarding the likely impacts of this activity on the reproductive success or survivorship of individuals and, from that, on the affected marine mammal populations or stocks. The Negligible Impact Analysis section will include the analysis of how this specific activity will impact marine mammals. In this section, we provide general background information on sound and marine mammal hearing before considering potential effects to marine mammals from sound produced by vibratory pile driving.

    Sound travels in waves, the basic components of which are frequency, wavelength, velocity, and amplitude. Frequency is the number of pressure waves that pass by a reference point per unit of time and is measured in hertz (Hz) or cycles per second. Wavelength is the distance between two peaks of a sound wave; lower frequency sounds have longer wavelengths than higher frequency sounds and attenuate (decrease) more rapidly in shallower water. Amplitude is the height of the sound pressure wave or “loudness” of a sound and is typically measured using the decibel (dB) scale. A dB is the ratio between a measured pressure (with sound) and a reference pressure (sound at a constant pressure, established by scientific standards). It is a logarithmic unit that accounts for large variations in amplitude; therefore, relatively small changes in dB ratings correspond to large changes in sound pressure. When referring to sound pressure levels (SPLs; the sound force per unit area), sound is referenced in the context of underwater sound pressure to 1 microPascal (μPa). One pascal is the pressure resulting from a force of one newton exerted over an area of one square meter. The source level (SL) represents the sound level at a distance of 1 m from the source (referenced to 1 μPa). The received level is the sound level at the listener's position. Note that all underwater sound levels in this document are referenced to a pressure of 1 μPa, and all airborne sound levels in this document are referenced to a pressure of 20 μPa.

    Root mean square (rms) is the quadratic mean sound pressure over the duration of an impulse. Rms is calculated by squaring all of the sound amplitudes, averaging the squares, and then taking the square root of the average (Urick 1983). Rms accounts for both positive and negative values; squaring the pressures makes all values positive so that they may be accounted for in the summation of pressure levels (Hastings and Popper, 2005). This measurement is often used in the context of discussing behavioral effects, in part because behavioral effects, which often result from auditory cues, may be better expressed through averaged units than by peak pressures.

    When underwater objects vibrate or activity occurs, sound-pressure waves are created. These waves alternately compress and decompress the water as the sound wave travels. Underwater sound waves radiate in all directions away from the source (similar to ripples on the surface of a pond), except in cases where the source is directional. The compressions and decompressions associated with sound waves are detected as changes in pressure by aquatic life and man-made sound receptors such as hydrophones.

    Even in the absence of sound from the specified activity, the underwater environment is typically loud due to ambient sound. Ambient sound is defined as environmental background sound levels lacking a single source or point (Richardson et al., 1995), and the sound level of a region is defined by the total acoustical energy being generated by known and unknown sources. These sources may include physical (e.g., waves, earthquakes, ice, atmospheric sound), biological (e.g., sounds produced by marine mammals, fish, and invertebrates), and anthropogenic sound (e.g., vessels, dredging, aircraft, construction). A number of sources contribute to ambient sound, including the following (Richardson et al., 1995):

    • Wind and waves: The complex interactions between wind and water surface, including processes such as breaking waves and wave-induced bubble oscillations and cavitation, are a main source of naturally occurring ambient noise for frequencies between 200 Hz and 50 kHz (Mitson 1995). In general, ambient sound levels tend to increase with increasing wind speed and wave height. Surf noise becomes important near shore, with measurements collected at a distance of 5.2 mi (8.5 km) from shore showing an increase of 10 dB in the 100 to 700 Hz band during heavy surf conditions.

    • Precipitation: Sound from rain and hail impacting the water surface can become an important component of total noise at frequencies above 500 Hz, and possibly down to 100 Hz during quiet times.

    • Biological: Marine mammals can contribute significantly to ambient noise levels, as can some fish and shrimp. The frequency band for biological contributions is from approximately 12 Hz to over 100 kHz.

    • Anthropogenic: Sources of ambient noise related to human activity include transportation (surface vessels and aircraft), dredging and construction, oil and gas drilling and production, seismic surveys, sonar, explosions, and ocean acoustic studies. Shipping noise typically dominates the total ambient noise for frequencies between 20 and 300 Hz. In general, the frequencies of anthropogenic sounds are below 1 kHz and, if higher frequency sound levels are created, they attenuate rapidly (Richardson et al., 1995). Sound from identifiable anthropogenic sources other than the activity of interest (e.g., a passing vessel) is sometimes termed background sound, as opposed to ambient sound. Representative levels of anthropogenic sound are displayed in Table 2.

    Table 2—Representative Sound Levels of Anthropogenic Sources Sound source Frequency range (Hz) Underwater sound level Reference Small vessels 250-1,000 151 dB rms at 1 m Richardson et al., 1995. Tug docking gravel barge 200-1,000 149 dB rms at 100 m Blackwell and Greene, 2002. Vibratory driving of 72-in steel pipe pile 10-1,500 180 dB rms at 10 m Reyff, 2007. Impact driving of 36-in steel pipe pile 10-1,500 195 dB rms at 10 m Laughlin, 2007. Impact driving of 66-in cast-in-steel-shell (CISS) pile 10-1,500 195 dB rms at 10 m Reviewed in Hastings and Popper, 2005.

    The sum of the various natural and anthropogenic sound sources at any given location and time—which comprise “ambient” or “background” sound—depends not only on the source levels (as determined by current weather conditions and levels of biological and shipping activity) but also on the ability of sound to propagate through the environment. In turn, sound propagation is dependent on the spatially and temporally varying properties of the water column and sea floor and is frequency-dependent. As a result of the dependence on a large number of varying factors, ambient sound levels can be expected to vary widely over both coarse and fine spatial and temporal scales. Sound levels at a given frequency and location can vary by 10-20 dB from day to day (Richardson et al., 1995). The result is that, depending on the source type and its intensity, sound from the specified activity may be a negligible addition to the local environment or could form a distinctive signal that may affect marine mammals.

    Marine Mammal Hearing

    When considering the influence of various kinds of sound on the marine environment, it is necessary to understand that different kinds of marine life are sensitive to different frequencies of sound. Based on available behavioral data, audiograms have been derived using auditory evoked potentials, anatomical modeling, and other data. Southall et al. (2007) designate “functional hearing groups” for marine mammals and estimate the lower and upper frequencies of functional hearing of the groups. The functional groups and the associated frequencies are indicated below (though animals are less sensitive to sounds at the outer edge of their functional range and most sensitive to sounds of frequencies within a smaller range somewhere in the middle of their functional hearing range):

    • Low frequency cetaceans (13 species of mysticetes): Functional hearing is estimated to occur between approximately 7 Hz and 25 kHz;

    • Mid-frequency cetaceans (32 species of dolphins, 6 species of larger toothed whales, and 19 species of beaked and bottlenose whales): Functional hearing is estimated to occur between approximately 150 Hz and 160 kHz;

    • High frequency cetaceans (8 species of true porpoises, 6 species of river dolphins, Kogia, the franciscana, and four species of cephalorhynchids): Functional hearing is estimated to occur between approximately 200 Hz and 180 kHz;

    • Phocid pinnipeds in water: Functional hearing is estimated to occur between approximately 75 Hz and 100 kHz; and

    • Otariid pinnipeds in water: Functional hearing is estimated to occur between approximately 100 Hz and 48 kHz.

    Of the four cetacean species likely to occur in the proposed project area, one is classified as low-frequency cetaceans (i.e., humpback, gray whales), one is classified as a mid-frequency cetacean (i.e., killer whale), and one is classified as a high-frequency cetacean (i.e., harbor porpoise) (Southall et al., 2007). Additionally, harbor seals are classified as members of the phocid pinnipeds in water functional hearing group while Steller sea lions and California sea lions are grouped under the otariid pinnipeds in water functional hearing group. A species' functional hearing group is a consideration when we analyze the effects of exposure to sound on marine mammals.

    Acoustic Impacts

    Potential Effects of Pile Driving Sound—The effects of sounds from pile driving might result in one or more of the following: Temporary or permanent hearing impairment, non-auditory physical or physiological effects, behavioral disturbance, and masking (Richardson et al., 1995; Gordon et al., 2004; Nowacek et al., 2007; Southall et al., 2007). The effects of pile driving on marine mammals are dependent on several factors, including the size, type, and depth of the animal; the depth, intensity, and duration of the pile driving sound; the depth of the water column; the substrate of the habitat; the standoff distance between the pile and the animal; and the sound propagation properties of the environment. Impacts to marine mammals from pile driving activities are expected to result primarily from acoustic pathways. As such, the degree of effect is intrinsically related to the received level and duration of the sound exposure, which are in turn influenced by the distance between the animal and the source. The further away from the source, the less intense the exposure should be. The substrate and depth of the habitat affect the sound propagation properties of the environment. Shallow environments are typically more structurally complex, which leads to rapid sound attenuation. In addition, substrates that are soft (e.g., sand) would absorb or attenuate the sound more readily than hard substrates (e.g., rock) which may reflect the acoustic wave. Soft porous substrates would also likely require less time to drive the pile, and possibly less forceful equipment, which would ultimately decrease the intensity of the acoustic source.

    In the absence of mitigation, impacts to marine species would be expected to result from physiological and behavioral responses to both the type and strength of the acoustic signature (Viada et al., 2008). The type and severity of behavioral impacts are more difficult to define due to limited studies addressing the behavioral effects of impulse sounds on marine mammals. Potential effects from impulse sound sources can range in severity from effects such as behavioral disturbance or tactile perception to physical discomfort, slight injury of the internal organs and the auditory system, or mortality (Yelverton et al., 1973).

    Hearing Impairment and Other Physical Effects—Marine mammals exposed to high intensity sound repeatedly or for prolonged periods can experience hearing threshold shift (TS), which is the loss of hearing sensitivity at certain frequency ranges (Kastak et al., 1999; Schlundt et al., 2000; Finneran et al., 2002, 2005). TS can be permanent (PTS), in which case the loss of hearing sensitivity is not recoverable, or temporary (TTS), in which case the animal's hearing threshold would recover over time (Southall et al., 2007). Marine mammals depend on acoustic cues for vital biological functions, (e.g., orientation, communication, finding prey, avoiding predators); thus, TTS may result in reduced fitness in survival and reproduction. However, this depends on the frequency and duration of TTS, as well as the biological context in which it occurs. TTS of limited duration, occurring in a frequency range that does not coincide with that used for recognition of important acoustic cues, would have little to no effect on an animal's fitness. Repeated sound exposure that leads to TTS could cause PTS. PTS constitutes injury, but TTS does not (Southall et al., 2007). The following subsections discuss in somewhat more detail the possibilities of TTS, PTS, and non-auditory physical effects.

    Temporary Threshold Shift—TTS is the mildest form of hearing impairment that can occur during exposure to a strong sound (Kryter 1985). While experiencing TTS, the hearing threshold rises, and a sound must be stronger in order to be heard. In terrestrial mammals, TTS can last from minutes or hours to days (in cases of strong TTS). For sound exposures at or somewhat above the TTS threshold, hearing sensitivity in both terrestrial and marine mammals recovers rapidly after exposure to the sound ends. Few data on sound levels and durations necessary to elicit mild TTS have been obtained for marine mammals, and none of the published data concern TTS elicited by exposure to multiple pulses of sound. Available data on TTS in marine mammals are summarized in Southall et al. (2007).

    Given the available data, the received level of a single pulse (with no frequency weighting) might need to be approximately 186 dB re 1 μPa2-s (i.e., 186 dB sound exposure level (SEL) or approximately 221-226 dB p-p (peak)) in order to produce brief, mild TTS. Exposure to several strong pulses that each have received levels near 190 dB rms (175-180 dB SEL) might result in cumulative exposure of approximately 186 dB SEL and thus slight TTS in a small odontocete, assuming the TTS threshold is (to a first approximation) a function of the total received pulse energy.

    The above TTS information for odontocetes is derived from studies on the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) and beluga whale (Delphinapterus leucas). There is no published TTS information for other species of cetaceans. However, preliminary evidence from a harbor porpoise exposed to pulsed sound suggests that its TTS threshold may have been lower (Lucke et al., 2009). As summarized above, data that are now available imply that TTS is unlikely to occur unless odontocetes are exposed to pile driving pulses stronger than 180 dB re 1 μPa (rms).

    Permanent Threshold Shift—When PTS occurs, there is physical damage to the sound receptors in the ear. In severe cases, there can be total or partial deafness, while in other cases the animal has an impaired ability to hear sounds in specific frequency ranges (Kryter 1985). There is no specific evidence that exposure to pulses of sound can cause PTS in any marine mammal. However, given the possibility that mammals close to a sound source can incur TTS, it is possible that some individuals might incur PTS. Single or occasional occurrences of mild TTS are not indicative of permanent auditory damage, but repeated or (in some cases) single exposures to a level well above that causing TTS onset might elicit PTS.

    Relationships between TTS and PTS thresholds have not been studied in marine mammals but are assumed to be similar to those in humans and other terrestrial mammals, based on anatomical similarities. PTS might occur at a received sound level at least several decibels above that inducing mild TTS if the animal were exposed to strong sound pulses with rapid rise time. Based on data from terrestrial mammals, a precautionary assumption is that the PTS threshold for impulse sounds (such as pile driving pulses as received close to the source) is at least six dB higher than the TTS threshold on a peak-pressure basis and probably greater than six dB (Southall et al., 2007). On an SEL basis, Southall et al. (2007) estimated that received levels would need to exceed the TTS threshold by at least 15 dB for there to be risk of PTS. Thus, for cetaceans, Southall et al. (2007) estimate that the PTS threshold might be an M-weighted SEL (for the sequence of received pulses) of approximately 198 dB re 1 μPa2-s (15 dB higher than the TTS threshold for an impulse). Given the higher level of sound necessary to cause PTS as compared with TTS, it is considerably less likely that PTS could occur.

    Measured source levels from impact pile driving can be as high as 214 dB rms. Although no marine mammals have been shown to experience TTS or PTS as a result of being exposed to pile driving activities, captive bottlenose dolphins and beluga whales exhibited changes in behavior when exposed to strong pulsed sounds (Finneran et al., 2000, 2005). The animals tolerated high received levels of sound before exhibiting aversive behaviors. Experiments on a beluga whale showed that exposure to a single watergun impulse at a received level of 207 kPa (30 psi) p-p, which is equivalent to 228 dB p-p, resulted in a 7 and 6 dB TTS in the beluga whale at 0.4 and 30 kHz, respectively. Thresholds returned to within 2 dB of the pre-exposure level within four minutes of the exposure (Finneran et al., 2002). Although the source level of pile driving from one hammer strike is expected to be much lower than the single watergun impulse cited here, animals being exposed for a prolonged period to repeated hammer strikes could receive more sound exposure in terms of SEL than from the single watergun impulse (estimated at 188 dB re 1 μPa2-s) in the aforementioned experiment (Finneran et al., 2002). However, in order for marine mammals to experience TTS or PTS, the animals have to be close enough to be exposed to high intensity sound levels for a prolonged period of time. Based on the best scientific information available, these SPLs are far below the thresholds that could cause TTS or the onset of PTS.

    Non-auditory Physiological Effects—Non-auditory physiological effects or injuries that theoretically might occur in marine mammals exposed to strong underwater sound include stress, neurological effects, bubble formation, resonance effects, and other types of organ or tissue damage (Cox et al., 2006; Southall et al., 2007). Studies examining such effects are limited. In general, little is known about the potential for pile driving to cause auditory impairment or other physical effects in marine mammals. Available data suggest that such effects, if they occur at all, would presumably be limited to short distances from the sound source and to activities that extend over a prolonged period. The available data do not allow identification of a specific exposure level above which non-auditory effects can be expected (Southall et al., 2007) or any meaningful quantitative predictions of the numbers (if any) of marine mammals that might be affected in those ways. Marine mammals that show behavioral avoidance of pile driving, including some odontocetes and some pinnipeds, are especially unlikely to incur auditory impairment or non-auditory physical effects.

    Disturbance Reactions

    Disturbance includes a variety of effects, including subtle changes in behavior, more conspicuous changes in activities, and displacement. Behavioral responses to sound are highly variable and context-specific and reactions, if any, depend on species, state of maturity, experience, current activity, reproductive state, auditory sensitivity, time of day, and many other factors (Richardson et al., 1995; Wartzok et al., 2003; Southall et al., 2007).

    Habituation can occur when an animal's response to a stimulus wanes with repeated exposure, usually in the absence of unpleasant associated events (Wartzok et al., 2003). Animals are most likely to habituate to sounds that are predictable and unvarying. The opposite process is sensitization, when an unpleasant experience leads to subsequent responses, often in the form of avoidance, at a lower level of exposure. Behavioral state may affect the type of response as well. For example, animals that are resting may show greater behavioral change in response to disturbing sound levels than animals that are highly motivated to remain in an area for feeding (Richardson et al., 1995; NRC, 2003; Wartzok et al., 2003).

    Controlled experiments with captive marine mammals showed pronounced behavioral reactions, including avoidance of loud sound sources (Ridgway et al., 1997; Finneran et al., 2000). Observed responses of wild marine mammals to loud pulsed sound sources (typically seismic guns or acoustic harassment devices, but also including pile driving) have been varied but often consist of avoidance behavior or other behavioral changes suggesting discomfort (Morton and Symonds, 2002; Thorson and Reyff, 2006; see also Gordon et al., 2004; Wartzok et al., 2003; Nowacek et al., 2007). Responses to continuous sound, such as vibratory pile installation, have not been documented as well as responses to pulsed sounds.

    With both types of pile driving, it is likely that the onset of pile driving could result in temporary, short term changes in an animal's typical behavior and/or avoidance of the affected area. These behavioral changes may include (Richardson et al., 1995): Changing durations of surfacing and dives; number of blows per surfacing; moving direction and/or speed; reduced/increased vocal activities; changing/cessation of certain behavioral activities (such as socializing or feeding); visible startle response or aggressive behavior (such as tail/fluke slapping or jaw clapping); avoidance of areas where sound sources are located; and/or flight responses (e.g., pinnipeds flushing into water from haul-outs or rookeries). Pinnipeds may increase their haul-out time, possibly to avoid in-water disturbance (Thorson and Reyff, 2006).

    The biological significance of many of these behavioral disturbances is difficult to predict, especially if the detected disturbances appear minor. However, the consequences of behavioral modification could be expected to be biologically significant if the change affects growth, survival, or reproduction. Significant behavioral modifications that could potentially lead to effects on growth, survival, or reproduction include:

    • Drastic changes in diving/surfacing patterns (such as those thought to cause beaked whale stranding due to exposure to military mid-frequency tactical sonar);

    • Habitat abandonment due to loss of desirable acoustic environment; and

    • Cessation of feeding or social interaction.

    The onset of behavioral disturbance from anthropogenic sound depends on both external factors (characteristics of sound sources and their paths) and the specific characteristics of the receiving animals (hearing, motivation, experience, demography) and is difficult to predict (Southall et al., 2007).

    Auditory Masking—Natural and artificial sounds can disrupt behavior by masking, or interfering with, a marine mammal's ability to hear other sounds. Masking occurs when the receipt of a sound is interfered with by another coincident sound at similar frequencies and at similar or higher levels. Chronic exposure to excessive, though not high-intensity, sound could cause masking at particular frequencies for marine mammals that utilize sound for vital biological functions. Masking can interfere with detection of acoustic signals such as communication calls, echolocation sounds, and environmental sounds important to marine mammals. Therefore, under certain circumstances, marine mammals whose acoustical sensors or environment are being severely masked could also be impaired from maximizing their performance fitness in survival and reproduction. If the coincident (masking) sound were anthropogenic, it could be potentially harassing if it disrupted hearing-related behavior. It is important to distinguish TTS and PTS, which persist after the sound exposure, from masking, which occurs only during the sound exposure. Because masking (without resulting in TS) is not associated with abnormal physiological function, it is not considered a physiological effect, but rather a potential behavioral effect.

    Masking occurs at the frequency band which the animals utilize so the frequency range of the potentially masking sound is important in determining any potential behavioral impacts. Because sound generated from in-water vibratory pile driving is mostly concentrated at low frequency ranges, it may have less effect on high frequency echolocation sounds made by porpoises. However, lower frequency man-made sounds are more likely to affect detection of communication calls and other potentially important natural sounds such as surf and prey sound. It may also affect communication signals when they occur near the sound band and thus reduce the communication space of animals (Clark et al., 2009) and cause increased stress levels (Foote et al., 2004; Holt et al., 2009).

    Masking has the potential to impact species at the population or community levels as well as at individual levels. Masking affects both senders and receivers of the signals and can potentially have long-term chronic effects on marine mammal species and populations. Recent research suggests that low frequency ambient sound levels have increased by as much as 20 dB (more than three times in terms of SPL) in the world's ocean from pre-industrial periods, and that most of these increases are from distant shipping (Hildebrand, 2009). All anthropogenic sound sources, such as those from vessel traffic, pile driving, and dredging activities, contribute to the elevated ambient sound levels, thus intensifying masking.

    Vibratory pile driving is relatively short-term, with rapid oscillations occurring for 10 to 30 minutes per installed pile. It is possible that vibratory pile driving resulting from this proposed action may mask acoustic signals important to the behavior and survival of marine mammal species, but the short-term duration and limited affected area would result in insignificant impacts from masking. Any masking event that could possibly rise to Level B harassment under the MMPA would occur concurrently within the zones of behavioral harassment already estimated for vibratory pile driving, and which have already been taken into account in the exposure analysis.

    Acoustic Effects, Airborne—Marine mammals that occur in the project area could be exposed to airborne sounds associated with pile driving that have the potential to cause harassment, depending on their distance from pile driving activities. Airborne pile driving sound would have less impact on cetaceans than pinnipeds because sound from atmospheric sources does not transmit well underwater (Richardson et al., 1995); thus, airborne sound would only be an issue for pinnipeds either hauled-out or looking with heads above water in the project area. Most likely, airborne sound would cause behavioral responses similar to those discussed above in relation to underwater sound. For instance, anthropogenic sound could cause hauled-out pinnipeds to exhibit changes in their normal behavior, such as reduction in vocalizations, or cause them to temporarily abandon their habitat and move further from the source. Studies by Blackwell et al. (2002) and Moulton et al. (2005) indicate a tolerance or lack of response to unweighted airborne sounds as high as 112 dB peak and 96 dB rms.

    Vessel Interaction

    Besides being susceptible to vessel strikes, cetacean and pinniped responses to vessels may result in behavioral changes, including greater variability in the dive, surfacing, and respiration patterns; changes in vocalizations; and changes in swimming speed or direction (NRC 2003). There will be a temporary and localized increase in vessel traffic during construction. A maximum of three work barges will be present at any time during the in-water and over water work. The barges will be located in close proximity to each other near the construction site.

    Potential Effects on Marine Mammal Habitat

    The primary potential impacts to marine mammal habitat are associated with elevated sound levels produced by vibratory and impact pile driving and removal in the area. However, other potential impacts to the surrounding habitat from physical disturbance are also possible.

    Potential Pile Driving Effects on Prey—Construction activities would produce continuous (i.e., vibratory pile driving) sounds. Fish react to sounds that are especially strong and/or intermittent low-frequency sounds. Short duration, sharp sounds can cause overt or subtle changes in fish behavior and local distribution. Hastings and Popper (2005) identified several studies that suggest fish may relocate to avoid certain areas of sound energy. Additional studies have documented effects of pile driving on fish, although several are based on studies in support of large, multiyear bridge construction projects (e.g., Scholik and Yan, 2001, 2002; Popper and Hastings, 2009). Sound pulses at received levels of 160 dB may cause subtle changes in fish behavior. SPLs of 180 dB may cause noticeable changes in behavior (Pearson et al., 1992; Skalski et al., 1992). SPLs of sufficient strength have been known to cause injury to fish and fish mortality. The most likely impact to fish from pile driving activities at the project area would be temporary behavioral avoidance of the area. The duration of fish avoidance of this area after pile driving stops is unknown, but a rapid return to normal recruitment, distribution, and behavior is anticipated. Additionally, NMFS developed a Biological Opinion in 2011 which indicated that no adverse effects were anticipated for critical habitat of prey species for marine mammals. In general, impacts to marine mammal prey species are expected to be minor and temporary due to the short timeframe for the project.

    Effects to Foraging Habitat—Pile installation may temporarily increase turbidity resulting from suspended sediments. Any increases would be temporary, localized, and minimal. The Corps must comply with state water quality standards during these operations by limiting the extent of turbidity to the immediate project area. In general, turbidity associated with pile installation is localized to about a 25-ft (7.62 m) radius around the pile (Everitt et al., 1980). Cetaceans are not expected to be close enough to the project pile driving areas to experience effects of turbidity, and any pinnipeds will be transiting the terminal area and could avoid localized areas of turbidity. Therefore, the impact from increased turbidity levels is expected to be discountable to marine mammals. Furthermore, pile driving and removal at the project site will not obstruct movements or migration of marine mammals.

    Natural tidal currents and flow patterns in MCR waters routinely disturb sediments. High volume tidal events can result in hydraulic forces that re-suspend benthic sediments, temporarily elevating turbidity locally. Any temporary increase in turbidity as a result of the proposed action is not anticipated to measurably exceed levels caused by these normal, natural periods.

    Proposed Mitigation

    In order to issue an LOA under section 101(a)(5)(A) of the MMPA, NMFS must set forth the permissible methods of taking pursuant to such activity, “and other means of effecting the least practicable impact on such species or stock and its habitat, paying particular attention to rookeries, mating grounds, and areas of similar significance, and on the availability of such species or stock for taking” for certain subsistence uses.

    For the proposed mitigation measures, the Corps listed the following protocols to be implemented during its proposed jetty rehabilitation program at MCR.

    1. Briefings With Construction Crew, Marine Mammal Monitoring Team and Corps Staff

    The Corps will conduct briefings between construction supervisors and crews, the marine mammal monitoring team, and Corps staff prior to the start of all pile driving activity in order to explain responsibilities, communication procedures, marine mammal monitoring protocol, and operational procedures.

    2. Vibratory Hammer

    All pile driving and removal activities will be conducted only using a vibratory hammer.

    3. Shutdown and Disturbance Zones

    The shutdown zone will include all areas where the underwater SPLs are anticipated to equal or exceed the Level A (injury) criteria for marine mammals (180 dB isopleth for cetaceans; 190 dB isopleth for pinnipeds). The shutdown zone will always be a minimum of 66 ft (20 m) to prevent injury from physical interaction of marine mammals with construction equipment. The Level B harassment zone would extend 4.6 mi (7.4 km) from the sound source. The Level A and B harassment thresholds are depicted in Table 4 found later in the Estimated Take by Incidental Harassment section.

    For in-water heavy machinery work other than pile driving (using, e.g., standard barges, tug boats, barge-mounted excavators, or clamshell equipment used to place or remove material), if a marine mammal comes within 66 ft (20 m), operations shall cease and vessels shall reduce speed to the minimum level required to maintain steerage and safe working conditions. This type of work could include the following activities: (1) Movement of the barge to the pile location or (2) positioning of the pile on the substrate via a crane (i.e., stabbing the pile).

    If the shutdown zone is obscured by fog or poor lighting conditions, pile driving will not be initiated until the entire shutdown zone is visible.

    A monitoring plan will be implemented as described in Sections 13 and 16 of the Application. This plan includes shutdown zones and specific procedures in the event a mammal is encountered.

    If a marine mammal approaches or enters the injury zone during pile driving, work will be halted and delayed until either the animal's voluntary departure has been visually confirmed beyond the disturbance zone, or 15 minutes for pinnipeds or 30 minutes for cetaceans have passed without re-detection of the animal.

    Marine Mammal Observers (MMO) will scan the waters for 30 minutes before and during all pile driving. If any species for which take is not authorized are observed within the area of potential sound effects during or 30 minutes before pile driving, the observer(s) will immediately notify the on-site supervisor or inspector, and require that pile driving either not initiate or temporarily cease until the animals have moved outside of the area of potential sound effects.

    Work would occur only during daylight hours, when visual monitoring of marine mammals can be conducted. In order to minimize impact to Southern Resident killer whales, in-water work will not be conducted during their primary feeding season extending from October 1 until May 1. Installation could occur from May 1 through September 30 each year.

    If between May 1 and July 1 any killer whales are observed within the area of zone of influence (ZOI), comprising the Level A and Level B thresholds, the Corps will immediately shut down all pile installation, removal, or maintenance activities. Operations will either remain shutdown or will not be initiated until all killer whales have moved outside of the area of the ZOI. In order to avoid take of endangered Southern Resident killer whales, which may be indistinguishable from transient whales, after July 1 until September 30 all killer whales will be assumed to be transients. No shutdown is required for killer whales observed after July 1 until September 30 in the Level B harassment zone, but animals must be recorded as Level B takes in the approved monitoring forms.

    Mitigation Conclusions

    NMFS has carefully evaluated the applicant's proposed mitigation measures and considered a range of other measures in the context of ensuring that NMFS prescribes the means of affecting the least practicable impact on the affected marine mammal species and stocks and their habitat. Our evaluation of potential measures included consideration of the following factors in relation to one another:

    • The manner in which, and the degree to which, the successful implementation of the measure is expected to minimize adverse impacts to marine mammals;

    • The proven or likely efficacy of the specific measure to minimize adverse impacts as planned; and

    • The practicability of the measure for applicant implementation,

    Any mitigation measure(s) prescribed by NMFS should be able to accomplish, have a reasonable likelihood of accomplishing (based on current science), or contribute to the accomplishment of one or more of the general goals listed below:

    1. Avoidance or minimization of injury or death of marine mammals wherever possible (goals 2, 3, and 4 may contribute to this goal);

    2. A reduction in the numbers of marine mammals (total number or number at biologically important time or location) exposed to received levels of pile driving, or other activities expected to result in the take of marine mammals (this goal may contribute to 1, above, or to reducing harassment takes only);

    3. A reduction in the number of times (total number or number at biologically important time or location) individuals would be exposed to received levels of pile driving, or other activities expected to result in the take of marine mammals (this goal may contribute to 1, above, or to reducing harassment takes only);

    4. A reduction in the intensity of exposures (either total number or number at biologically important time or location) to received levels of pile driving, or other activities expected to result in the take of marine mammals (this goal may contribute to a, above, or to reducing the severity of harassment takes only);

    5. Avoidance or minimization of adverse effects to marine mammal habitat, paying special attention to the food base, activities that block or limit passage to or from biologically important areas, permanent destruction of habitat, or temporary destruction/disturbance of habitat during a biologically important time; and

    6. For monitoring directly related to mitigation—an increase in the probability of detecting marine mammals, thus allowing for more effective implementation of the mitigation.

    Based on our evaluation of the applicant's proposed measures, as well as other measures considered by NMFS, NMFS has preliminarily determined that the proposed mitigation measures provide the means of effecting the least practicable impact on marine mammals species or stocks and their habitat, paying particular attention to rookeries, mating grounds, and areas of similar significance.

    Proposed Monitoring and Reporting

    In order to issue an Incidental Take Authorization (ITA) for an activity, section 101(a)(5)(D) of the MMPA states that NMFS must set forth “requirements pertaining to the monitoring and reporting of such taking.” The MMPA implementing regulations at 50 CFR 216.104 (a)(13) indicate that requests for ITAs must include the suggested means of accomplishing the necessary monitoring and reporting that will result in increased knowledge of the species and of the level of taking or impacts on populations of marine mammals that are expected to be present in the proposed action area. The Corps submitted information regarding marine mammal monitoring to be conducted during pile driving and removal operations as part of the proposed rule application. That information can be found in sections 13 and 16 of the application. The monitoring measures may be modified or supplemented based on comments or new information received from the public during the public comment period.

    Monitoring measures proposed by the applicant or prescribed by NMFS should contribute to or accomplish one or more of the following top-level goals:

    1. An increase in our understanding of the likely occurrence of marine mammal species in the vicinity of the action, i.e., presence, abundance, distribution, and/or density of species.

    2. An increase in our understanding of the nature, scope, or context of the likely exposure of marine mammal species to any of the potential stressor(s) associated with the action (e.g., sound or visual stimuli), through better understanding of one or more of the following: The action itself and its environment (e.g., sound source characterization, propagation, and ambient noise levels); the affected species (e.g., life history or dive pattern); the likely co-occurrence of marine mammal species with the action (in whole or part) associated with specific adverse effects; and/or the likely biological or behavioral context of exposure to the stressor for the marine mammal (e.g., age class of exposed animals or known pupping, calving or feeding areas).

    3. An increase in our understanding of how individual marine mammals respond (behaviorally or physiologically) to the specific stressors associated with the action (in specific contexts, where possible, e.g., at what distance or received level).

    4. An increase in our understanding of how anticipated individual responses, to individual stressors or anticipated combinations of stressors, may impact either: The long-term fitness and survival of an individual; or the population, species, or stock (e.g., through effects on annual rates of recruitment or survival).

    5. An increase in our understanding of how the activity affects marine mammal habitat, such as through effects on prey sources or acoustic habitat (e.g., through characterization of longer-term contributions of multiple sound sources to rising ambient noise levels and assessment of the potential chronic effects on marine mammals).

    6. An increase in understanding of the impacts of the activity on marine mammals in combination with the impacts of other anthropogenic activities or natural factors occurring in the region.

    7. An increase in our understanding of the effectiveness of mitigation and monitoring measures.

    8. An increase in the probability of detecting marine mammals (through improved technology or methodology), both specifically within the safety zone (thus allowing for more effective implementation of the mitigation) and in general, to better achieve the above goals.

    Proposed Monitoring Measures 1. Visual Vessel-Based Monitoring

    The Corps will employ one or two vessels to monitor shutdown and disturbance zones for pile-driving and removal activities at the North Jetty and South Jetty offloading facilities. Section 16 of the Application indicates roughly where these vessels will be located. These vessels will be traversing across the delineated disturbance zones associated with the site at which active pile driving is occurring.

    2. Visual Shore-Based Monitoring

    • Visual monitoring will be conducted by qualified, trained MMOs. Visual monitoring will be implemented during all pile installation activities at all jetties. An observer must meet the qualifications stated in the application, have prior training and experience conducting marine mammal monitoring or surveys, and have the ability to identify marine mammal species and describe relevant behaviors that may occur in proximity to in-water construction activities.

    • MMOs must be approved in advanced by NMFS.

    • Trained MMOs will be placed at the best vantage points practicable (e.g., at the pile location on construction barges, on shore, or aboard vessels, etc. as noted in the figures) to monitor for marine mammals and implement shutdown/delay procedures when applicable by calling for the shutdown to the hammer operator. Likely shore-based MMO locations are described in section 16 of the Application.

    • During pedestrian surveys, personnel will avoid as much as possible direct approach towards pinnipeds that are hauled out. If it is absolutely necessary to make movements towards pinnipeds, approach in a slow and steady manner to reduce the behavioral harassment to the animals as much as possible.

    • Use a hand-held or boat-mounted GPS device and rangefinder to verify the required monitoring distance from the project site. MMOs will use range finders to determine distance to marine mammals, boats, buoys, and construction equipment.

    • MMOs will be equipped with camera and video capable of recording any necessary take information, including data required in the event of an unauthorized Level A take.

    • Scan the waters within the area of potential sound effects using high-quality binoculars (e.g., Zeiss 10x42, or similar) or spotting scopes (20-60 zoom or equivalent), and by making visual observations.

    • MMOs shall be equipped with radios or cell phones for maintaining immediate contact with other observers, Corps engineers, and personnel operating pile equipment.

    • Monitoring would be conducted before, during, and after pile driving and removal activities. In addition, observers shall record all incidents of marine mammal occurrence, regardless of distance from activity, and shall document any behavioral reactions in concert with distance from piles being driven. Observations made outside the shutdown zone will not result in shutdown; that pile segment would be completed without cessation, unless the animal approaches or enters the shutdown zone, at which point all pile driving activities would be halted. Monitoring will take place from 30 minutes prior to initiation through 30 minutes post-completion of pile driving activities. Pile driving activities include the time to remove a single pile or series of piles, as long as the time elapsed between uses of the pile driving equipment is no more than 30 minutes.

    3. Hydroacoustic Monitoring

    A hydroacoustic monitoring plan shall be employed using an appropriate method reviewed and approved by NMFS to ensure that the harassment isopleths are not extending past the initial distances established.

    Data Collection

    We require that observers use approved data forms. Among other pieces of information, the Corps will record detailed information about any implementation of shutdowns, including the distance of animals to the pile and description of specific actions that ensued and resulting behavior of the animal, if any. In addition, the Corps will attempt to distinguish between the number of individual animals taken and the number of incidents of take. We require that, at a minimum, the following information be collected on the sighting forms:

    • Date and time that monitored activity begins or ends;

    • Construction activities occurring during each observation period;

    • Weather parameters (e.g., percent cover, visibility);

    • Water conditions (e.g., sea state, tide state);

    • Species, numbers, and, if possible, sex and age class of marine mammals;

    • Description of any observable marine mammal behavior patterns, including bearing and direction of travel and distance from pile driving activity;

    • Distance from pile driving activities to marine mammals and distance from the marine mammals to the observation point;

    • Locations of all marine mammal observations; and

    • Other human activity in the area.

    Proposed Reporting Measures

    The Corps would submit an annual report to NMFS's Permits and Conservation Division within 90 days of the end of every operating season (October 1) during the five-year authorization period. The annual report would detail the monitoring protocol, summarize the data recorded during monitoring, and estimate the number of marine mammals that may have been harassed. If no comments are received from NMFS within 30 days, the draft final report will become final. If comments are received, a final report must be submitted up to 30 days after receipt of comments. Reports shall contain the following information:

    • Summaries of monitoring effort (e.g., total hours, total distances, and marine mammal distribution through the study period, accounting for sea state and other factors affecting visibility and detectability of marine mammals);

    • Analyses of the effects of various factors influencing detectability of marine mammals (e.g., sea state, number of observers, and fog/glare);

    • Species composition, occurrence, and distribution of marine mammal sightings, including date, numbers, age/size/gender categories (if determinable), and group sizes;

    • Observed behavioral responses to pile driving including bearing and direction of travel and distance from pile driving activity; and

    • Results of hydroacoustic monitoring program.

    In the unanticipated event that the specified activity clearly causes the take of a marine mammal in a manner prohibited by the LOA (if issued), such as an injury (Level A harassment), serious injury or mortality (e.g., ship-strike, gear interaction, and/or entanglement), the Corps would immediately cease the specified activities and immediately report the incident to the Chief of the Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, and the West Coast Regional Stranding Coordinator. The report would include the following information:

    • Time, date, and location (latitude/longitude) of the incident;

    • Name and type of vessel involved (if applicable);

    • Vessel's speed during and leading up to the incident (if applicable);

    • Description of the incident;

    • Status of all sound source used in the 24 hours preceding the incident;

    • Water depth;

    • Environmental conditions (e.g., wind speed and direction, Beaufort sea state, cloud cover, and visibility);

    • Description of all marine mammal observations in the 24 hours preceding the incident;

    • Species identification or description of the animal(s) involved;

    • Fate of the animal(s); and

    • Photographs or video footage of the animal(s) (if equipment is available).

    Activities would not resume until NMFS is able to review the circumstances of the prohibited take. NMFS would work with the Corps to determine necessary actions to minimize the likelihood of further prohibited take and ensure MMPA compliance. The Corps would not be able to resume their activities until notified by NMFS via letter, email, or telephone.

    In the event that the Corps discovers an injured or dead marine mammal, and the lead MMO determines that the cause of the injury or death is unknown and the death is relatively recent (i.e., in less than a moderate state of decomposition as described in the next paragraph), the Corps would immediately report the incident to the Chief of the Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, and the West Coast Regional Stranding Coordinator.

    The report would include the same information identified in the section above. Activities would be able to continue while NMFS reviews the circumstances of the incident. NMFS would work with the Corps to determine whether modifications in the activities are appropriate.

    In the event that the Corps discovers an injured or dead marine mammal, and the lead MMO determines that the injury or death is not associated with or related to the activities authorized in the LOA (e.g., previously wounded animal, carcass with moderate to advanced decomposition, or scavenger damage), the Corps would report the incident to the Chief of the Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, the Chief of the Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, and the NMFS West Coast Stranding Hotline or West Coast Regional Stranding Coordinator, within 24 hours of the discovery. The Corps would provide photographs or video footage (if available) or other documentation of the stranded animal sighting to NMFS and the Marine Mammal Stranding Network. Pile driving activities would be permitted to continue.

    Estimated Take by Incidental Harassment

    Except with respect to certain activities not pertinent here, section 3(18) of the MMPA defines “harassment” as: “. . . any act of pursuit, torment, or annoyance which (i) has the potential to injure a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild [Level A harassment]; or (ii) has the potential to disturb a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild by causing disruption of behavioral patterns, including, but not limited to, migration, breathing, nursing, breeding, feeding, or sheltering [Level B harassment].”

    All anticipated takes would be by Level B harassment resulting from vibratory pile driving and removal and may result in temporary changes in behavior. Injurious or lethal takes are not expected due to the expected source levels and sound source characteristics associated with the activity, and the proposed mitigation and monitoring measures are expected to further minimize the possibility of such take.

    If a marine mammal responds to a stimulus by changing its behavior (e.g., through relatively minor changes in locomotion direction/speed or vocalization behavior), the response may or may not constitute taking at the individual level, and is unlikely to affect the stock or the species as a whole. However, if a sound source displaces marine mammals from an important feeding or breeding area for a prolonged period, impacts on animals or on the stock or species could potentially be significant (e.g., Lusseau and Bejder 2007; Weilgart 2007). Given the many uncertainties in predicting the quantity and types of impacts of sound on marine mammals, it is common practice to estimate how many animals are likely to be present within a particular distance of a given activity, or exposed to a particular level of sound, and to use those values to estimate take.

    Upland work can generate airborne sound and create visual disturbance that could potentially result in disturbance to marine mammals (specifically, pinnipeds) that are hauled out or at the water's surface with heads above the water. Because there are regular haul-outs in close proximity to South Jetty, we believe that incidents of incidental take may occur. Furthermore, the Corps will also be conducting pedestrian surveys on each of the jetties during the summer lasting about two days for each survey. During the life of this proposed action, about six days of surveys over three seasons would occur at the South Jetty, which is the only jetty survey with the potential to impact pinnipeds.

    The Corps requested authorization for the incidental taking of small numbers of killer whale, gray whale, humpback whale, harbor porpoise, Steller sea lion, California sea lion, and harbor seal near the MCR project area that may result from vibratory pile driving and removal during construction activities associated with the rehabilitation of the Jetty system at the MCR. In order to estimate the potential incidents of take that may occur incidental to the specified activity, we must first estimate the extent of the sound field that may be produced by the activity and then consider that in combination with information about marine mammal density or abundance in the project area. We first provide information on applicable sound thresholds for determining effects to marine mammals before describing the information used in estimating the sound fields, the available marine mammal density or abundance information, and the method of estimating potential incidences of take.

    Sound Thresholds

    We use generic sound exposure thresholds to determine when an activity that produces sound might result in impacts to a marine mammal such that a take by harassment might occur. These thresholds below (Table 3) are used to estimate when harassment may occur (i.e., when an animal is exposed to levels equal to or exceeding the relevant criterion). NMFS is working to revise these acoustic guidelines; for more information on that process, please visit www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/acoustics/guidelines.htm.

    Table 3—Underwater Injury and Disturbance Threshold Decibel Levels for Marine Mammals Criterion Criterion definition Threshold* Level A harassment PTS (injury) conservatively based on TTS** 190 dB RMS for pinnipeds
  • 180 dB RMS for cetaceans.
  • Level B harassment Behavioral disruption for impulse noise (e.g., impact pile driving) 160 dB RMS. Level B harassment Behavioral disruption for non-pulse noise (e.g., vibratory pile driving, drilling) 120 dB RMS. * All decibel levels referenced to 1 micropascal (re: 1 μPa). Note all thresholds are based off root mean square (RMS) levels. ** PTS = Permanent Threshold Shift; TTS = Temporary Threshold Shift.
    Distance to Sound Thresholds

    Underwater Sound Propagation Formula—Pile driving generates underwater noise that can potentially result in disturbance to marine mammals in the project area. Transmission loss (TL) is the decrease in acoustic intensity as an acoustic pressure wave propagates out from a source. TL parameters vary with frequency, temperature, sea conditions, current, source and receiver depth, water depth, water chemistry, and bottom composition and topography. The general formula for underwater TL is:

    TL = B * log10 (R1/R2), where TL = transmission loss in dB B = wave mode coefficient R1= the distance of the modeled SPL from the driven pile, and R2= the distance from the driven pile of the initial measurement.

    This formula neglects loss due to scattering and absorption, which is assumed to be zero here. The degree to which underwater sound propagates away from a sound source is dependent on a variety of factors, most notably the water bathymetry and presence or absence of reflective or absorptive conditions including in-water structures and sediments. Spherical spreading occurs in a perfectly unobstructed (free-field) environment not limited by depth or water surface, resulting in a 6 dB reduction in sound level for each doubling of distance from the source (20*log[range]). Cylindrical spreading occurs in an environment in which sound propagation is bounded by the water surface and sea bottom, resulting in a reduction of 3 dB in sound level for each doubling of distance from the source (10*log[range]). A practical spreading value of fifteen is often used under conditions where water increases with depth as the receiver moves away from the shoreline, resulting in an expected propagation environment that would lie between spherical and cylindrical spreading loss conditions. Practical spreading loss ((15*log[range]) with a 4.5 dB reduction in sound level for each doubling of distance is assumed here.

    The Corps does not have information or modeling results related to pile installation activities. However, some features of the proposed action are similar to those recently proposed by the Navy, the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT), and other entities which were issued IHA/LOAs. For these reasons, NMFS considered some of the results from previous, representative monitoring efforts. Though the MCR navigation channel is a major commercial thoroughfare, there are no ports or piers in the immediate proximity of the jetties, as the seas are too dangerous. The locations and settings of the MCR jetties are far more dynamic than a naval pier setting in the Puget Sound, the substrate is mostly sand, and the natural background noise is likely to be much higher with the large, breaking wave sets, dynamic currents, and high winds. The Corps project is also in the immediate proximity of the open ocean, with less opportunity for sound attenuation by land.

    NMFS considered representative results from underwater monitoring for concrete, steel, and wood piles that were installed via both impact and vibratory hammers in water depths from 5 to 15 meters (Illingworth and Rodkin 2007, WSDOT 2011 cited in Naval Base Kitsap 2014, Navy 2014, and NMFS 2011b). Transmission loss and propagation estimates are affected by the size and depth of the piles, the type of hammer and installation method, frequency, temperature, sea conditions, currents, source and receiver depth, water depth, water chemistry, and bottom composition and topography. NMFS reviewed several documents that included relevant monitoring results for radial distances and proxy sound levels encompassed by underwater pile driving noise. These distances for vibratory driving for 24-in steel piles were summarized previously in Table 16 in the Application.

    Because no site-specific, in-water noise attenuation data is available, the practical spreading model described and used by NMFS was used to determine transmission loss and the distances at which impact and vibratory pile driving or removal source levels are expected to attenuate down to the pertinent acoustic thresholds. The underwater practical spreading model is provided below:

    R2 = R1 * 10^ ((dBat R1− dBacoustic threshold)/15) Where: R1 = distance of a known or measured sound level R2 = estimated distance required for sound to attenuate to a prescribed acoustic threshold

    NMFS used representative sound levels from different studies to determine appropriate proxy sound levels and to model estimated distances until pertinent thresholds (R1 and dB at R1). Studies which met the following parameters were considered: Pile materials comprised of wood, concrete, and steel pipe piles; pile sizes from 24- to 30-inches diameter, and pile driver type of either vibratory and impact hammers. These types and sizes of piles were considered in order to evaluate a representative range of sound levels that may result from the proposed action. In some cases, becausee there was little or no data specific to 24-inch piles, NMFS analyzed 30-inch piles as the next larger pile size with available data. The Corps will include a maximum pile size of 24-inches as a constraint in its construction contracts, though it will consult with NMFS regarding the originally proposed size.

    Results of the practical spreading model provided the distance of the radii that were used to establish a ZOI or area affected by the noise criteria. At the MCR, the channel is about 3 miles across between the South and North Jetty. These jetties, as well as Jetty A, could attenuate noise, but the flanking sides on two of the jetties are open ocean, and Jetty A is slightly further interior in the estuary. Clatsop Spit, Cape Disappointment, Hammond Point, as well as the Sand Islands, are also land features that would attenuate noise. Therefore, as a conservative estimate, NMFS is using (and showing on ZOI maps) the maximum distance and area but has indicated jetty attenuation in the ZOI area maps (See Figures 18, 19, 20, and 21 in the Application).

    NMFS selected proxy values for impact installation methods and calculated distances to acoustic thresholds for comparison and contextual purposes. NMFS ultimately relied most heavily on the proxy values developed by the Navy (2014).

    For vibratory pile driving source level installation, NMFS proposes to use a figure of 163 dB re 1 μPa rms at 10 m. The proxy value of 163 dB re 1 μPa rms at 10 m is greater than the 24-inch pipe pile proxy and equal to the sheet pile values proposed by Navy (2014) at 161 dB re 1 μPa rms and 163 dB re 1 μPa rms, respectively, and is also higher than the Friday Harbor Ferry sample (162 dB re 1 μPa rms) (Navy 2014 and Laughlin 2010a cited in Washington State Ferries 2013, respectively). NMFS also proposes 163 dB re 1 μPa rms to represent sheet pile installation, which registered higher than the pipe pile levels in the proxy study. Given the comparative differences between the substrate and context used in the Navy study relative to the MCR, 163 dB re 1 μPa rms is a very conservative evaluation level. Results are listed in Tables 4, 5, 6, and 7.

    Table 4—Calculated Area Encompassed Within Zone of Influence at MCR Jetties for Underwater Marine Mammal Sound Thresholds at Jetty A Jetty Underwater threshold Distance—m (ft) Area excluding land & jetty masses—km2 (mi2) Jetty A: ~ Station 78+50, River Side Vibratory driving, pinniped injury (190 dB) 0 0 Vibratory driving, cetacean injury (180 dB) 1 (3.3) <0.000003 (0.000001) Vibratory driving, disturbance (120 dB) 7,356 (4.6 miles) 23.63 (9.12) Table 5—Calculated Area Encompassed Within Zone of Influence at MCR Jetties for Underwater Marine Mammal Sound Thresholds at North Jetty: Channel Side Jetty Underwater threshold Distance—m (ft) Area excluding land & jetty masses—km2 (mi2) North Jetty: ~ Station 70+00, Channel Side Vibratory driving, pinniped injury (190 dB) 0 0 Vibratory driving, cetacean injury (180 dB) 1 (3.3) <0.000003 (0.000001) Vibratory driving, disturbance (120 dB) 7,356 (4.6 miles) 49.18 (18.99) Table 6—Calculated Area Encompassed Within Zone of Influence at MCR Jetties for Underwater Marine Mammal Sound Thresholds at South Jetty: Clatsop Spit Site Jetty Underwater threshold Distance—m (ft) Area excluding land & jetty masses—km2 (mi2) South Jetty: ~ Clatsop Spit Side Vibratory driving, pinniped injury (190 dB) 0 0 Vibratory driving, cetacean injury (180 dB) 1 (3.3) <0.000003 (0.000001) Vibratory driving, disturbance (120 dB) 7,356 (4.6 miles) 51.96 (20.06) Table 7—Calculated Area Encompassed Within Zone of Influence at MCR Jetties for Underwater Marine Mammal Sound Thresholds at South Jetty: Station 270+00 Channel Side Jetty Underwater threshold Distance—m (ft) Area excluding land & jetty masses—km2 (mi2) South Jetty: ~ Channel Side Vibratory driving, pinniped injury (190 dB) 0 0 Vibratory driving, cetacean injury (180 dB) 1 (3.3) <0.000003 (0.000001) Vibratory driving, disturbance (120 dB) 7,356 (4.6 miles) 52.89 (20.42)

    Note that the actual area ensonified by pile driving activities is significantly constrained by local topography relative to the total threshold radius. The actual ensonified area was determined using a straight line-of-sight projection from the anticipated pile driving locations. These areas are depicted in Figures 18, 19, 20 and 21 in the Application.

    Airborne construction sound may also cause behavioral responses. Again, the Corps does not have specific, in-situ data and has used monitoring results from similar actions to obtain representative proxy SPLs. This also included the Navy (2014) proxy study for acoustic values from both vibratory and impact installation methods.

    During the Navy study (2014), a maximum level of 110 re 20 μPa at 15 m was measured for a single 24-inch pile installed via impact hammer and was selected as the most representative value for modeling analysis under the Navy proxy study. The site was located in the Puget Sound. A single 30-second measurement was made for 24-inch piles during the Test Pile Program at NBK, Bangor via vibratory installation, and because these data fit the overall trend of smaller and larger pile sizes, the limited data set for 24-inch steel pipe supported the Navy (2014) representative proxy value of 92 dB re 20 μPa at 15 m (Navy 2014) for vibratory installation. The rms Leq value for 24-inch steel pipe piles was also chosen as the best estimate for 24-inch sheet piles in the Navy study (Navy 2014).

    The method used for calculating potential exposures to vibratory pile driving noise for each threshold was estimated using local marine mammal data sets, the Biological Opinion and data from LOA/IHA estimates on similar projects with similar actions. All estimates are conservative and include the following assumptions:

    • During construction, each species could be present in the project area each day. The potential for a take is based on a 24-hour period. The model assumes that there can be one potential take (Level B harassment exposure) per individual per 24-hours;

    • All pilings installed at each site would have an underwater noise disturbance equal to the piling that causes the greatest noise disturbance (i.e., the piling furthest from shore) installed with the method that has the largest ZOI. The largest underwater disturbance ZOI would be produced by vibratory driving steel piles. The ZOIs for each threshold are not spherical and are truncated by land masses which would dissipate sound pressure waves;

    • Exposures were based on estimated work days. Construction at each of the three offloading facilities would occur over an approximate span of ~17 days per facility resulting in 51 days. Assuming that not all of the Jetty A work was completed prior to the expiration of the IHA, seven days were added to cover remaining work at that location. Additionally six days of pedestrian surveys are planned to occur on South Jetty which may result in pinniped disturbance at haulout sites; and

    • In absence of site specific underwater acoustic propagation modeling, the practical spreading loss model was used to determine the ZOI.

    The exposure estimates for cetaceans were generated using the following general equation. Note that additional details are provided below for each species for which authorized take is proposed:

    Exposure estimate = (n * ZOI) * days of total activity over 5 years Where: n = density estimate used for each species/season ZOI = sound threshold ZOI area; the area encompassed by all locations where the SPLs equal or exceed the threshold being evaluated as shown in Tables 4, 5, 6, and 7. n * ZOI produces an estimate of the abundance of animals that could be present in the area for exposure, and is multiplied by days of total activity.

    Exposure estimates for pinnipeds were generated using haulout data collected by state wildlife agencies depicting the numbers of various pinniped species that are hauled out near the tip of the South Jetty.

    Note that pinnipeds that occur near the project sites could be exposed to airborne sounds associated with pile driving that have the potential to cause behavioral harassment, depending on their distance from pile driving activities. Cetaceans are not expected to be exposed to airborne sounds that would result in harassment as defined under the MMPA. Airborne noise will primarily be an issue for pinnipeds that are swimming or hauled out near the project site within the range of noise levels elevated above the airborne acoustic criteria. NMFS recognizes that pinnipeds in the water could be exposed to airborne sound that may result in behavioral harassment when looking with heads above water. However, these animals would previously have been taken as a result of exposure to underwater sound above the behavioral harassment thresholds, which are in all cases larger than those associated with airborne sound. Thus, the behavioral harassment of these animals is already accounted for in these estimates of potential take. Multiple incidents of exposure to sound above NMFS' thresholds for behavioral harassment are not believed to result in increased behavioral disturbance, in either nature or intensity of disturbance reaction. Therefore, we do not believe that authorization of incidental take resulting from airborne sound for pinnipeds is warranted, and airborne sound is not discussed further here.

    Killer Whale

    Southern Resident killer whales have been observed offshore near the study area and ZOI, but the Corps does not have fine-scale details on frequency of use. While killer whales do occur in the Columbia River plume, where fresh water from the river intermixes with salt water from the ocean, they are rarely seen in the interior of the Columbia River Jetty system. Because Southern Residents have been known to feed in the area offshore, the Corps has limited its pile installation window in order to avoid peak salmon runs and any overlap with the presence of Southern Residents. To ensure no Level B acoustical harassment of endangered Southern Resident killer whales occurs, the Corps will prohibit pile installation from October 1 until April 30 of each season. The Corps is proposing to include vessel surveys and to implement a shut-down procedure if killer whales occur in the ZOI during pile installation/removal/repair activities from May 1 to July 1 to avoid take. After July 1, any animals taken are assumed to be transient killer whales. As such NMFS is not anticipating any acoustic exposure to Southern Residents. Therefore, NMFS has determined that authorization of take for Southern Residents is not warranted.

    Western transient killer whales may be traversing offshore over a greater duration of time than the feeding resident. They are rarely observed inside of the jetty system. The Pacific U.S. Navy Marine Species Density Database (Hanser et al., 2014) provides an estimated density of 0.00055-0.00411 animals per km2 for killer whales in spring, summer and fall for offshore areas near MCR. Only North Jetty and South Jetty were included as part of this calculation because the ensonified zones associated with driving at the two locations extends out into the open ocean where killer whales may occur. The ensonified zones associated with Jetty A and Clatsop Spit are located to the inland side of the Jetty system where killer whales are unlikely to be found.

    The following formula was used to calculate exposure:

    Exposure Estimate = (0.00411DensityEstimate* 48.18ZOI North Jetty* 17days) + (0.00411DensityEstimate* 52.89ZOI South Jetty * 17days) = 7.05 whales Where: NDensityEstimate = Estimated density of species within the 7.35 km (4.6 mi) radii encompassing the ZOIs at the North Jetty (48.18 km2) and South Jetty (52.89 km2) using the U.S. Navy density model (2014) Days = Total days of pile installation or removal activity (17 days/facility * North and South Jetty offloading facilities = 34 days)

    While the calculated exposure is 7.05 whales, NMFS believes that an authorized take of 20 over the 5 year LOA period is warranted because solitary killer whales are rarely observed, and transient whales travel in pods of 6 or less (Dalheim et al., 2008) members. NMFS has conservatively assumed that 4 pods of 5 killer whales will exposed to Level B harassment.

    Humpback Whale

    The Corps does not have fine-scale information about humpback whale use within the immediate project area. The Navy (2014) marine mammal database indicates that between 0.002 animals per km2 occur near the mouth of the Columbia River during spring (March-May) while the summer (June-August) and fall (September-November) densities are 0.0214 animals per km2. Most of the pile installation is likely to be done in May or June at the beginning of the construction season while pile removal would occur towards the end of the season in August and September. Repair or replacement of piles, although not anticipated, could occur anytime during the five month construction season. Therefore, NMFS will conservatively assume that approximately 20 percent of driving will occur during each month between May and September, which equates to 3.4 days per month. Rounding to full days, NMFS will assume that 3 days of driving per month will occur from June through August while 4 days of driving will occur in the months of May and September. Humpback whales will only occur in the offshore portions of the project area which would be the ensonified areas associated with driving activities at the North and South Jetties.

    The following formula was used to calculate exposure:

    Exposure Estimate = (0.002DensityEstimate* 48.18ZOI North Jetty * 4days (May)+ 0.0214DensityEstimate* 48.18ZOI North Jetty* 13days (June-September)) + (0.002DensityEstimate* 52.89ZOI South Jetty * 4days (May)+ 0.0214DensityEstimate* 52.89ZOI South Jetty* 13days (June-September) = 28.9 humpback whale exposures.

    Based on the above formula, an estimate of 29 (28.9) humpback whale disturbance exposures was calculated over the duration of the entire project. Therefore, NMFS is recommending Level B take of 29 humpback whales.

    Gray Whales

    Anecdotal evidence also indicates gray whales have been seen at MCR but are not a common visitor, as they mostly remain in the vicinity of the further offshore shelf-break (Griffith 2015). According to NOAA's Cetacean Mapping classification the waters in the vicinity of the MCR are classified as a Biologically Important Area (BIA) for gray whales. These whales use the area as a migration corridor (Calambokidis et al., 2015). As primarily bottom feeders, gray whales are the most coastal of all great whales. They primarily feed in shallow continental shelf waters and are often observed within a few miles of shore (Barlow et. al., 2009). The Pacific Coast Feeding Group (PCFG) or northbound summer migrants would be the most likely gray whales to be in the vicinity of MCR.

    The Navy (2014) marine mammal database indicates that between 0.0487 animals per km2 occur near the mouth of the Columbia River during spring (March-May) while the summer (June-August) and fall (September-November) densities are 0.00045 animals per km2. NMFS will conservatively assume that approximately 20 percent of driving will occur during each month between May and September which equates to 3.4 days per month. Rounding to full days NMFS will assume that three days of drilling per month will occur from June through August while four days of drilling will occur in the months of May and September. Gray whales would only occur in the offshore portions of the project area associated with pile driving activities at the North and South Jetties.

    The following formula was used to calculate exposure:

    Exposure Estimate = +(0.0487DensityEstimate* 48.18ZOI North Jetty * 4days (May)+ 0.00045DensityEstimate* 48.18ZOI North Jetty* 13days (June-September)) + (0.0487DensityEstimate* 52.89ZOI South Jetty * 4days (May)+ 0.00045DensityEstimate* 52.89ZOI South Jetty* 13days (June-September) = 20.27 gray whale exposures.

    However, the number of gray whale exposures at the North Jetty and South Jetty locations should be higher than that of humpback whales because gray whales are known to inhabit nearshore environments in greater numbers than humpback whales.

    Gray whales typically migrate in pods numbering between 1 and 3 although migrating pods of 16 or more have been recorded (Jefferson et al., 1993.) For gray whales, NMFS will conservatively assume 20 pods of 2 gray whales will be exposed for work done at the North Jetty and South Jetty sites. Therefore, the total number of proposed takes is 40 gray whales.

    Harbor Porpoise

    Harbor porpoises are known to occupy shallow, coastal waters and, therefore, are likely to be found in the vicinity of the MCR. They are also known to occur within the proposed project area (Griffith 2015).

    The Navy (2014) provides an estimated year round density of 1.67163 animals per km2 for offshore waters near the MCR. This number will be utilized to estimate take for all four jetties as porpoises are known to occur on the inland side of the jetty complex.

    The formula used for harbor porpoises is below:

    Exposure Estimate = (1.67163DensityEstimate* 23.63ZOI Jetty A * 7days) + (1.67163DensityEstimate* 48.18ZOI North Jetty * 17days) + (1.67163DensityEstimate* 52.89ZOI South Jetty Channel * 17days) + (1.67163DensityEstimate* 51.96ZOI South Jetty Clatsop * 17days) = 4,624 harbor porpoise exposures.

    Based on the density model suggested by NOAA (2015), the Corps has provided a very conservative maximum estimate of 4,624 harbor porpoise disturbance exposures over the 58 days of operation. However, this number of potential exposures does not accurately reflect the actual number of animals that would potentially be taken for the MCR jetty project. Rather, it is more likely that the same animal may be exposed more than once during each 17-day operating window. According to Halpin et al. (2009), the normal range of group size generally consists of less than five or six individuals, although aggregations into large, loose groups of 50 to several hundred animals could occur for feeding or migration. Because the ZOI only extends for a maximum 7.35 km (4.6 mi), it is likely that due to competition and territorial circumstances only a limited number of pods would be feeding in the ZOI at any particular time, and members of this small number of pods could be taken repeatedly. NMFS is recommending Level B take of 4,624 harbor porpoises.

    Pinnipeds

    There are haulout sites on the South Jetty used by pinnipeds, especially Steller sea lions. It is likely that pinnipeds that use the haulout area would be exposed to 120 dB threshold acoustic threshold during pile driving activities. The number of exposures would vary based on weather conditions, season, and daily fluctuations in abundance. Based on a survey by the WDFW (2014), the number of affected Steller sea lions could be between 200-800 animals per day depending on the particular month. California sea lion numbers could range from 1 to 500 per day and the number of harbor seals could be as low as 1 to as high as 57 per day. Exposure and take estimates, below, are based on past pinniped data from WDFW (2000-2014 data), which had a more robust monthly sampling frequency relative to ODFW (2014) counts. The exception to this was for harbor seal counts, for which ODFW (also 2000-2014 data) had more sampling data in certain months. Therefore, ODFW harbor seal data was used for the month of May, which indicated zero harbor seal sightings in May. NMFS utilized the average of counts from May through September from surveys conducted in between 2000 and 2014 at the South Jetty. This survey data was used to calculate take of animals exposed to Level B disturbance at the South Jetty's pinniped haulout area. NMFS will conservatively assume that all pinnipeds both hauled out and in-water would enter the water at some point during a single day of driving and transit into one of the four ensonified zones associated with each offloading facility. Therefore, they would be exposed to noise at or above the Level B thresholds.

    To calculate take, NMFS will take the average daily counts from the months of May and June, when pile driving is likely to occur. This will be multiplied by the total number of days of driving (58) at the four offloading facilities.

    Exposure EstimateStellar = (Nest(May-Sept)* 58underwater/piles days) = 27,773 Steller sea lions Exposure EstimateCalifornia= (Nest(May-Sept) * 58underwater/piles days) = 8,039 California sea lions Exposure EstimateHarbor = (Nest(May-Sept) * 58underwater/piles days) = 989 Harbor porpoises Where: Nest = Estimated daily average number of animals for May and June hauled out at South Jetty based on WDFW data and ODFW data Duration = total days of pile installation or removal activity for underwater thresholds (58); 17 days each at North Jetty, South Jetty, and Clatsop Spit and 7 days remaining at Jetty A.

    In order to estimate exposure from pedestrian surveys, NMFS assumed that over the span of three survey seasons (6 days), there was a chance of visual disturbance impacting one percent of pinnipeds that may be hauled out on the jetty during any single day. Because survey days are weather dependent and occur in the summer time, the Corps conservatively selected from the highest monthly average species number during the summer months between May and August. Pinniped exposure estimates are found in Table 8.

    Table 8—Authorized Takes of Pinnipeds During Pile Installation at Jetty A, North Jetty, South Jetty, and Clatsop Spit Month Steller
  • sea lion
  • Avg 1
  • #
  • California
  • sea lion
  • Avg 1
  • #
  • Harbor
  • seal
  • Avg 12
  • #
  • April 587 99 May 824 125 0 June 676 202 57 July 358 1 10 August 324 115 1 September 209 249 October 384 508 Avg Daily Count (May-Sept) 3 478 138 17 Total Pile Driving Exposures (58 days) 27,724 8,027 986 Pedestrian Survey Exposures—1% of highest monthly Avg.May-August (6 days) 49 12 3 Total Exposures 27,773 8,039 989 1 WDFW average daily count per month from 2000-2014. 2 ODFW average daily count per month for May and July 2000-2014 due to additional available sampling data. 3 Conservatively assumes each exposure is to new individual, all individuals are new arrivals each month, and no individual is exposed more than one time.
    Analyses and Determinations Negligible Impact Analysis

    Negligible impact is “an impact resulting from the specified activity that cannot be reasonably expected to, and is not reasonably likely to, adversely affect the species or stock through effects on annual rates of recruitment or survival” (50 CFR 216.103). A negligible impact finding is based on the lack of likely adverse effects on annual rates of recruitment or survival (i.e., population-level effects). An estimate of the number of Level B harassment takes, alone, is not enough information on which to base an impact determination. In addition to considering estimates of the number of marine mammals that might be “taken” through behavioral harassment, NMFS must consider other factors, such as the likely nature of any responses (their intensity, duration, etc.), the context of any responses (critical reproductive time or location, migration, etc.), as well as the number and nature of estimated Level A harassment takes, the number of estimated mortalities, effects on habitat, and the status of the species.

    To avoid repetition, the discussion of our analyses applies to all the species listed in Table 1, with the exception of Southern Resident killer whales and gray whales, given that the anticipated effects of this pile driving project on marine mammals are expected to be relatively similar in nature. There is no information about the size, status, or structure of any species or stock that would lead to a different analysis for this activity, else species-specific factors would be identified and analyzed.

    Pile driving activities associated with the rehabilitation of the Jetty system at the MCR, as outlined previously, have the potential to disturb or displace marine mammals. Specifically, the planned activities may result in take, in the form of Level B harassment (behavioral disturbance) only, from underwater sounds generated from pile driving. Potential takes could occur if individuals of these species are present in the ensonified zone when pile driving is happening.

    No injury, serious injury, or mortality is anticipated given the nature of the activity and measures designed to minimize the possibility of injury to marine mammals. The potential for these outcomes is minimized through the construction method and the implementation of the planned mitigation measures. Specifically, vibratory hammers will be the only method of installation utilized. No impact driving is planned. Vibratory driving does not have significant potential to cause injury to marine mammals due to the relatively low source levels produced and the lack of potentially injurious source characteristics. The likelihood of marine mammal detection ability by both land-based and vessel-based observers is high under the environmental conditions described for the rehabilitation of the Jetty system. MMO's ability to readily implement shutdowns as necessary during Jetty system construction activities will result in avoidance of injury, serious injury, or mortality.

    The Corps' proposed pile driving activities are localized and of short duration. The entire project area is limited to the four jetty offloading facilities and their immediate surroundings. Pile driving activities covered under the LOA would take on approximately 10 hours per day for 58 days over a five year period. Six days of pedestrian surveys across the five year period are also planned. The piles would be a maximum diameter of 24 inches and would only be installed by vibratory driving method. The possibility exists that smaller diameter piles may be used, but for this analysis it is assumed that 24-inch piles will be driven.

    These localized and short-term noise exposures may cause brief startle reactions or short-term behavioral modification by the animals. These reactions and behavioral changes are expected to subside quickly when the exposures cease. Moreover, the proposed mitigation and monitoring measures are expected to reduce potential exposures and behavioral modifications even further. Additionally, no important feeding and/or reproductive areas for marine mammals are known to be near the proposed action areas. Therefore, the take resulting from the proposed project is not reasonably expected to and is not reasonably likely to adversely affect the marine mammal species or stocks through effects on annual rates of recruitment or survival.

    The project also is not expected to have significant adverse effects on affected marine mammals' habitat, as analyzed in detail in the “Anticipated Effects on Marine Mammal Habitat” section. The project activities would not modify existing marine mammal habitat. The activities may cause some fish to leave the area of disturbance, thus temporarily impacting marine mammals' foraging opportunities in a limited portion of the foraging range; but, because of the short duration of the activities and the relatively small area of the habitat that may be affected, the impacts to marine mammal habitat are not expected to cause significant or long-term negative consequences.

    Effects on individuals that are taken by Level B harassment, on the basis of reports in the literature as well as monitoring from other similar activities, will likely be limited to reactions such as increased swimming speeds, increased surfacing time, or decreased foraging (if such activity were occurring) (e.g., Thorson and Reyff, 2006; Lerma, 2014). Most likely, individuals will simply move away from the sound source and be temporarily displaced from the areas of pile driving, although even this reaction has been observed primarily only in association with impact pile driving. In response to vibratory driving, pinnipeds (which may become somewhat habituated to human activity in industrial or urban waterways) have been observed to orient towards and sometimes move towards the sound. The pile driving activities analyzed here are similar to, or less impactful than, numerous construction activities conducted in other similar locations, which have taken place with no reported injuries or mortality to marine mammals, and no known long-term adverse consequences from behavioral harassment. Repeated exposures of individuals to levels of sound that may cause Level B harassment are unlikely to result in hearing impairment or to significantly disrupt foraging behavior. Thus, even repeated Level B harassment of some small subset of the overall stocks is unlikely to result in any significant realized decrease in fitness for the affected individuals, and thus would not result in any adverse impact to the stock as a whole. Level B harassment will be reduced to the level of least practicable impact through use of mitigation measures described herein and, if sound produced by project activities is sufficiently disturbing, animals are likely to simply avoid the project area while the activity is occurring.

    Note that NMFS has not authorized take for the endangered Southern Resident killer whales. Take has not been authorized because the Corps will prohibit pile driving from October 1 through May 1 which is considered the primary feeding season for Southern Residents and when their presence in the project areas is likely to be greatest. Additionally, the Corps will shut down all pile driving activities between May 1 and July 1 if any killer whale is observed approaching the ZOI. While unlikely, Southern Residents may occur near the project areas during this time. Because it may be difficult to differentiate between Southern Resident and transient populations, this conservative measure will ensure that no Southern Residents are taken. After July 1 it would be highly unlikely for Southern Residents to occur in the project areas. Therefore, shut down for Southern Residents will not be necessary, and any killer whales observed in the ZOI during this time are assumed to be transient killer whales.

    The area offshore of MCR has been identified as a BIA for migrating gray whales (Calambokidis et al., 2015). Members of the PCFG as well as other animals from both the eastern and western North Pacific populations travel through the area. However, this region has not been identified as one of six distinct PCFG feeding BIAs where PCFG animals are likely to stay for extended periods. Furthermore, anecdotal evidence indicates that while members of the PCFG have been observed near the MCR, they are not a common visitor, as they mostly remain in the vicinity of the offshore shelf-break Griffith (2015).

    In summary, this negligible impact analysis is founded on the following factors: (1) The possibility of injury, serious injury, or mortality may reasonably be considered discountable; (2) the anticipated incidents of Level B harassment consist of, at worst, temporary modifications in behavior and; (3) the presumed efficacy of the proposed mitigation measures in reducing the effects of the specified activity to the level of least practicable impact. In combination, we believe that these factors, as well as the available body of evidence from other similar activities, demonstrate that the potential effects of the specified activity will have only short-term effects on individuals. The specified activity is not expected to impact rates of recruitment or survival and will therefore not result in population-level impacts.

    Based on the analysis contained herein of the likely effects of the specified activity on marine mammals and their habitat, and taking into consideration the implementation of the proposed monitoring and mitigation measures, NMFS finds that the total marine mammal take from the Corps' rehabilitation of the MCR Jetty System will have a negligible impact on the affected marine mammal species or stocks.

    Table 9—Estimated Percentage of Species/Stocks That May Be Exposed to Level B Harassment Species Total proposed
  • authorized
  • takes over
  • 5 years/average
  • annual take
  • (rounded)
  • Abundance Percentage of total stock taken annually over 5 year LOA period
    Killer whale (Western transient stock) 20/4 243 1.6 Humpback whale (California/Oregon/Washington stock) 29/6 1,918 0.3 Gray whale (Eastern North Pacific Stock) 40/8 18,017 <0.01 Harbor porpoise 4,624/924 21,487 4.3 Steller sea lion 27,773/5,555 63,160-78,198 8.8-7.1 California sea lion 8,039/1,608 296,750 0.5 Harbor seal 989/198 24,732 0.8
    Small Numbers Analysis

    Table 9 illustrates the number of animals that could be exposed to received noise levels that could cause Level B behavioral harassment for the proposed work associated with the rehabilitation of the Jetty system at MCR. The total number of allowed takes was estimated and then divided equally over five years, which is the length of the proposed LOA. This was done because the small numbers analysis must be conducted on an annual basis.

    Note that the work at the four jetty offloading facilities will not be spread evenly over the proposed five-year authorization period. Because the schedule for pile driving over the five year period is uncertain and susceptible to change depending on future funding availability, it is not possible for NMFS to estimate exposure and subsequent take for specific years. As such, the actual take per species may be higher or lower than the annual average for a specific year. Because the take numbers generated by NMFS are annualized averages, NMFS will assume that in any one year the actual take will be up to two times greater than the projected average annual take. As such, the greatest percentage of a total stock taken annually is not likely to exceed 17.6 percent (11,110 Steller sea lions). Furthermore, the small numbers analyses of annual averages shown in Table 9 represents between 8.8 percent and <0.01 percent of the populations of these stocks that could be affected by Level B behavioral harassment. The numbers of animals authorized to be taken for all species would be considered small relative to the relevant stocks or populations even if each estimated taking occurred to a new individual—an extremely unlikely scenario. For pinnipeds occurring in the vicinity of the offloading facilities, especially those hauled out at South Jetty, there will almost certainly be overlap in individuals present day-to-day, and these takes are likely to occur only within some small portion of the overall regional stock.

    Based on the analysis contained herein of the likely effects of the specified activity on marine mammals and their habitat, and taking into consideration the implementation of the mitigation and monitoring measures, which are expected to reduce the number of marine mammals potentially affected by the proposed action, NMFS finds that small numbers of marine mammals will be taken relative to the populations of the affected species or stocks.

    Impact on Availability of Affected Species for Taking for Subsistence Uses

    There are no subsistence uses of marine mammals in the proposed project area and, thus, no subsistence uses impacted by this action.

    Endangered Species Act (ESA)

    We previously requested a section 7 consultation with NMFS West Coast Region for this action. The resultant Biological Opinion determined that the proposed action was not likely to jeopardize the continued existence of humpback whales. The West Coast Region has determined that the March 18, 2011, Biological Opinion remains valid and that the proposed MMPA authorization provides no new information about the effects of the action, nor does it change the extent of effects of the action, nor offers any other basis to require reinitiation of the consultation. Therefore, the March 18, 2011, Biological Opinion meets the requirements of section 7(a)(2) of the ESA and implementing regulations at 50 CFR part 402 for our proposed action to issue an LOA under the MMPA, and no further consultation is required. The West Coast Region will issue a new Incidental Take Statement and append it to the 2011 Biological Opinion.

    National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

    The Corps issued the Final Environmental Assessment Columbia River at the Mouth, Oregon and Washington Rehabilitation of the Jetty System at the Mouth of the Columbia River and Finding of No Significant Impact in 2011. The environmental assessment (EA) and finding of no significant interest (FONSI) were revised in 2012 with a FONSI being signed on July 26, 2012. NMFS has reviewed the Corps' application for a rehabilitation of the MCR Jetty system. Based on that review, we have determined that the proposed action closely follows the activities described in the EA and does not present any substantial changes, or significant new circumstances or information relevant to environmental concerns which would require a supplement to the 2012 EA or preparation of a new NEPA document. Therefore, we have preliminarily determined that a new or supplemental EA or Environmental Impact Statement is unnecessary, and will, after review of public comments, determine whether or not to rely on the existing EA and FONSI. The 2012 EA is available for review at www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental/construction.htm.

    Classification

    The Office of Management and Budget has determined that this proposed rule is not significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866.

    Pursuant to section 605(b) of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), the Chief Counsel for Regulation of the Department of Commerce has certified to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration that this proposed rule, if adopted, would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is the only entity that would be subject to the requirements in these proposed regulations. The RFA requires Federal agencies to prepare an analysis of a rule's impact on small entities whenever the agency is required to publish a notice of proposed rulemaking. However, a Federal agency may certify, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 605(b), that the action will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is the only entity that would be subject to the requirements in these proposed regulations. The SBA defines a small entity as one that is independently owned and operated, and not dominant in its field of operation. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is not a small governmental jurisdiction, small organization, or small business, as defined by the RFA. Any requirements imposed by a Letter of Authorization issued pursuant to these regulations, and any monitoring or reporting requirements imposed by these regulations, would be applicable only to the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers. NMFS does not expect the issuance of these regulations or the associated LOAs to result in any impacts to small entities pursuant to the RFA. Because this action, if adopted, would directly affect the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and not a small entity, NMFS concludes the action would not result in a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. Thus, a regulatory flexibility analysis is not required and none has been prepared.

    Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no person is required to respond to nor shall a person be subject to a penalty for failure to comply with a collection of information subject to the requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) unless that collection of information displays a currently valid OMB control number.

    This proposed rule contains collection-of-information requirements subject to the provisions of the PRA. These requirements have been approved by OMB under control number 0648-0151 and include applications for regulations, subsequent LOAs, and reports. Send comments regarding any aspect of this data collection, including suggestions for reducing the burden, to NMFS and the OMB Desk Officer (see ADDRESSES).

    The Office of Management and Budget has determined that this proposed rule is not significant for purposes of Executive Order 12866. NMFS has considered all provisions of E.O. 12866 and analyzed this action's impact. Based on that review, this action is not expected to have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more, or have an adverse effect in a material way on the economy. Furthermore, this action would not create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with an action taken or planned by another agency; or materially alter the budgetary impact of entitlements, grants, user fees, or loan programs or the rights and obligations of recipients thereof; or raise novel or policy issues.

    List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 217

    Exports, Fish, Imports, Indians, Labeling, Marine mammals, Penalties, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Seafood, Transportation.

    Dated: August 16, 2016. Samuel D. Rauch III, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine Fisheries Service.

    For reasons set forth in the preamble, 50 CFR part 217 is proposed to be amended as follows:

    PART 217—REGULATIONS GOVERNING THE TAKE OF MARINE MAMMALS INCIDENTAL TO SPECIFIED ACTIVITIES 1. The authority citation for part 217 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq., unless otherwise noted.

    2. Add subpart X to part 217 to read as follows: Subpart X—Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Rehabilitation of the Jetty System at the Mouth of the Columbia River in Oregon and Washington Sec. 217.230 Specified activity and specified geographical region. 217.231 Effective dates. 217.232 Permissible methods of taking. 217.233 Prohibitions. 217.234 Mitigation requirements. 217.235 Requirements for monitoring and reporting. 217.236 Letters of Authorization. 217.237 Renewals and modifications of Letters of Authorization. Subpart X Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Rehabilitation of the Jetty System at the Mouth of the Columbia River in Oregon and Washington
    § 217.230 Specified activity and specified geographical region.

    (a) Regulations in this subpart apply only to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) and those persons it authorizes to conduct activities on its behalf for the taking of marine mammals that occurs in the area outlined in paragraph (b) of this section and that occurs incidental to the jetty rehabilitation program.

    (b) The taking of marine mammals by the Corps may be authorized in a Letter of Authorization (LOA) only if it occurs within the nearshored marine environment at the Mouth of the Columbia River in Oregon and Washington.

    § 217.231 Effective dates.

    Regulations in this subpart are effective May 1, 2017 through April 30, 2022.

    § 217.232 Permissible methods of taking.

    (a) Under LOAs issued pursuant to § 216.106 of this chapter and § 217.236, the Holder of the LOA (hereinafter “Corps”) may incidentally, but not intentionally, take marine mammals within the area described in § 217.230(b), provided the activity is in compliance with all terms, conditions, and requirements of the regulations in this subpart and the appropriate LOA.

    (b) The incidental take of marine mammals under the activities identified in § 217.230(a) is limited to the indicated number of takes on an annual basis of the following species and is limited to Level B harassment:

    (1) Cetaceans:

    (i) Humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae)—29;

    (ii) Harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena)—4,624;

    (iii) Killer whale (Orcinus orca)—20;

    (iv) Gray whale (Eschrichtius robustus)—40;

    (2) Pinnipeds:

    (i) Harbor seal (Phoca vitulina)—989;

    (ii) Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus)—27,773; and

    (iii) California Sea Lion (Zalophus californianus)—8,039.

    § 217.233 Prohibitions.

    (a) Notwithstanding takings contemplated in § 217.230 and authorized by an LOA issued under § 216.106 of this chapter and § 217.236, no person in connection with the activities described in § 217.230 may:

    (1) Take any marine mammal not specified in § 217.232(b);

    (2) Take any marine mammal specified in § 217.232(b) other than by incidental Level B harassment;

    (3) Take a marine mammal specified in § 217.232(b) if the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) determines such taking results in more than a negligible impact on the species or stocks of such marine mammal;

    (4) Take a marine mammal specified in § 217.232(b) if NMFS determines such taking results in an unmitigable adverse impact on the species or stock of such marine mammal for taking for subsistence uses; or

    (5) Violate, or fail to comply with, the terms, conditions, and requirements of this subpart or an LOA issued under § 216.106 of this chapter and § 217.236.

    (b) [Reserved]

    § 217.234 Mitigation requirements.

    (a) When conducting the activities identified in § 217.130(a), the mitigation measures contained in any LOA issued under § 216.106 of this chapter and § 217.236 must be implemented. These mitigation measures include, but are not limited to:

    (1) General conditions:

    (i) The Corps shall conduct briefings as necessary between vessel crews, marine mammal monitoring team, and other relevant personnel prior to the start of all pile driving and removal activity, and when new personnel join the work, in order to explain responsibilities, communication procedures, marine mammal monitoring protocol, and operational procedures;

    (ii) Each Marine Mammal Observer (MMO) will maintain a copy of the LOA at their respective monitoring location, as well as a copy in the main construction office;

    (iii) Pile activities are limited to the use of a vibratory hammer. Impact hammers are prohibited;

    (iv) Pile installation/maintenance/removal activities are limited to the time frame starting May 1 and ending September 30 each season; and

    (v) The Corps must notify NMFS' West Coast Regional Office (562-980-3232), at least 24-hours prior to start of activities impacting marine mammals.

    (2) [Reserved]

    (b) Establishment of Level B harassment zone:

    (1) The Corps shall establish Level B behavioral harassment Zone of Influence (ZOI) where received underwater sound pressure levels (SPLs) are higher than 120 dB (rms) re 1 μPa for non-pulse sources (i.e. vibratory hammer). The ZOI delineates where Level B harassment would occur; and

    (2) For vibratory driving, the level B harassment area is comprised of a radius between 65 ft (20 m) and 4.6 mi (7.35 km) from driving operations.

    (c) Establishment of shutdown zone:

    (1) The Corps shall implement a minimum shutdown zone of 65 ft (20 m) radial distance from vibratory hammer driving activities;

    (2) For in-water heavy machinery work other than pile driving (using, e.g., standard barges, tug boats, barge-mounted excavators, or clamshell equipment used to place or remove material), operations shall cease if a marine mammal comes within 66 ft (20 m) and vessels shall reduce speed to the minimum level required to maintain steerage and safe working conditions;

    (3) If a marine mammal approaches or enters the shutdown zone during the course of vibratory pile driving operations, the activity will be halted and delayed until the animal has voluntarily left and been visually confirmed beyond the shutdown zone;

    (4) If a marine mammal is seen above water within or approaching a shutdown zone then dives below, the contractor would wait 15 minutes for pinnipeds and 30 minutes for cetaceans. If no marine mammals are seen by the observer in that time it will be assumed that the animal has moved beyond the exclusion zone;

    (5) If the shutdown zone is obscured by fog or poor lighting conditions, pile driving shall not be initiated until the entire shutdown zone is visible;

    (6) Disturbance zones shall be established as described in paragraph (b) of this section, and shall encompass the Level B harassment zones not defined as exclusion zones in paragraph (c) of this section. These zones shall be monitored to maximum line-of-sight distance from established vessel- and shore-based monitoring locations. If marine mammals other than those listed in § 217.232(b) are observed within the disturbance zone, the observation shall be recorded and communicated as necessary to other MMOs responsible for implementing shutdown/power down requirements and any behaviors documented;

    (7) Between May 1 and July 1, the observation of any killer whales within the ZOI shall result in immediate shut-down all of pile installation, removal, or maintenance activities. Pile driving shall not resume until all killer whales have moved outside of the ZOI; and

    (8) After July 1, no shutdown is required for Level B killer whale take, but animals must be recorded as Level B take in the monitoring forms described below.

    (d) If the allowable number of takes for any marine mammal species in § 217.232(b) is exceeded, or if any marine mammal species not listed in § 217.232(b) is exposed to SPLs greater than or equal to 120 dB re 1 µPa (rms), the Corps shall immediately shutdown activities involving the use of active sound sources (e.g., vibratory pile driving equipment), record the observation, and notify NMFS Office of Protected Resources.

    § 217.235 Requirements for monitoring and reporting.

    (a) Monitoring.

    (1) Qualified Marine Mammal Observers (MMOs) shall be used for both shore and vessel-based monitoring.

    (2) All MMOs must be approved by NMFS.

    (3) A qualified MMO is a third-party trained biologist with the following minimum qualifications:

    (i) Visual acuity in both eyes (correction is permissible) sufficient to discern moving targets at the water's surface with ability to estimate target size and distance. Use of binoculars or spotting scope may be necessary to correctly identify the target;

    (ii) Advanced education in biological science, wildlife management, mammalogy or related fields (Bachelor's degree or higher is preferred);

    (iii) Experience and ability to conduct field observations and collect data according to assigned protocols (this may include academic experience);

    (iv) Experience or training in the field identification of marine mammals (cetaceans and pinnipeds);

    (v) Sufficient training, orientation or experience with vessel operation and pile driving operations to provide for personal safety during observations;

    (vi) Writing skills sufficient to prepare a report of observations; and

    (vii) Ability to communicate orally, by radio, or in-person with project personnel to provide real time information on marine mammals observed in the area, as needed.

    (4) MMOs must be equipped with the following:

    (i) Binoculars (10x42 or similar), laser rangefinder, GPS, big eye binoculars and/or spotting scope 20-60 zoom or equivalent; and

    (ii) Camera and video capable of recording any necessary take information, including data required in the event of an unauthorized Level A take zone.

    (5) MMOs shall conduct monitoring as follows:

    (i) During all pile driving and removal activities;

    (ii) Only during daylight hours from sunrise to sunset when it is possible to visually monitor mammals;

    (iii) Scan the waters for 30 minutes before and during all pile driving. If any species for which take is not authorized are observed within the area of potential sound effects during or 30 minutes before pile driving, the MMO(s) will immediately notify the on-site supervisor or inspector, and require that pile driving either not initiate or temporarily cease until the animals have moved outside of the area of potential sound effects;

    (iv) If weather or sea conditions restrict the observer's ability to observe, or become unsafe for the monitoring vessel(s) to operate, pile installation shall not begin or shall cease until conditions allow for monitoring to resume;

    (v) Trained land-based observers will be placed at the best vantage points practicable. The observers position(s) will either be from the top of jetty or adjacent barge at the location of the pile activities and from Cape Disappointment Visitors Center during work at North and South Jetty, and Clatsop Spit for work at Jetty A;

    (vi) Vessel-based monitoring for marine mammals must be conducted for all pile-driving activities at the North Jetty and two South Jetty offloading facilities. One or two vessels may be utilized as necessary to adequately monitor the offshore ensonified zone;

    (vii) Any marine mammals listed in § 217.232(b) entering into the Level B harassment zone will be recorded as take by the MMO and listed on the appropriate monitoring forms described below;

    (viii) During pedestrian surveys, personnel will avoid as much as possible direct approach towards pinnipeds that are hauled out. If it is absolutely necessary to make movements towards pinnipeds, personnel will approach in a slow and steady manner to reduce the behavioral harassment to the animals as much as possible;

    (ix) Hydroacoustic monitoring; and

    (x) Hydroacoustic monitoring shall be performed using an appropriate method reviewed and approved by NMFS.

    (b) Reporting.

    (1) MMOs must use NMFS-approved monitoring forms and shall record the following information when a marine mammal is observed:

    (i) Date and time that pile removal and/or installation begins and ends;

    (ii) Construction activities occurring during each observation period;

    (iii) Weather parameters (e.g., percent cover, visibility);

    (iv) Water conditions [e.g., sea state, tidal state (incoming, outgoing, slack, low, and high)];

    (v) Species, numbers, and, if possible, sex and age class of marine mammals;

    (vi) Marine mammal behavior patterns observed, including bearing and direction of travel, and, if possible, the correlation to SPLs;

    (vii) Distance from pile removal and/or installation activities to marine mammals and distance from the marine mammal to the observation point;

    (viii) Locations of all marine mammal observations; and

    (ix) Other human activity in the area.

    (2) [Reserved]

    (c) The Corps shall submit a draft annual report to NMFS Office of Protected Resources covering a given calendar year within ninety days of the last day of pile driving operations. The annual report shall include summaries of the information described in paragraph (b)(1) of this section.

    (d) The Corps shall submit a final annual report to the Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, within thirty days after receiving comments from NMFS on the draft report.

    (e) Notification of dead or injured marine mammals.

    (1) In the unanticipated event that the specified activity clearly causes the take of a marine mammal in a manner prohibited by this Authorization, such as an injury (Level A harassment), serious injury, or mortality, The Corps shall immediately cease the specified activities and report the incident to the Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, and the West Coast Regional Stranding Coordinator, NMFS.

    (i) The report must include the following information:

    (A) Time, date, and location (latitude/longitude) of the incident;

    (B) Description of the incident;

    (C) Environmental conditions (e.g., wind speed and direction, Beaufort sea state, cloud cover, and visibility);

    (D) Description of marine mammal observations in the 24 hours preceding the incident;

    (E) Species identification or description of the animal(s) involved;

    (F) Status of all sound source use in the 24 hours preceding the incident;

    (G) Fate of the animal(s); and

    (H) Photographs or video footage of the animal(s). Activities shall not resume until NMFS is able to review the circumstances of the prohibited take. NMFS shall work with the Corps to determine what measures are necessary to minimize the likelihood of further prohibited take and ensure MMPA compliance. The Corps may not resume their activities until notified by NMFS.

    (ii) In the event that the Corps discovers an injured or dead marine mammal, and the lead MMO determines that the cause of the injury or death is unknown and the death is relatively recent (e.g., in less than a moderate state of decomposition), the Corps shall immediately report the incident to the Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, and the West Coast Regional Stranding Coordinator, NMFS. The report must include the same information identified in paragraph (e) of this section. If the observed marine mammal is dead, activities may continue while NMFS reviews the circumstances of the incident. If the observed marine mammal is injured, measures described in paragraph (e) (of this section must be implemented. NMFS will work with the Corps to determine whether additional mitigation measures or modifications to the activities are appropriate.

    (iii) In the event that the Corps discovers an injured or dead marine mammal, and the lead MMO determines that the injury or death is not associated with or related to the activities authorized in the LOA (e.g., previously wounded animal, carcass with moderate to advanced decomposition, scavenger damage), the Corps shall report the incident to the Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, and the West Coast Regional Stranding Coordinator, NMFS, within 24 hours of the discovery. The Corps shall provide photographs or video footage or other documentation of the stranded animal sighting to NMFS. If the observed marine mammal is dead, activities may continue while NMFS reviews the circumstances of the incident. If the observed marine mammal is injured, measures described in paragraph (e) must be implemented. In this case, NMFS will notify the Corps when activities may resume.

    § 217.236 Letters of Authorization.

    (a) To incidentally take marine mammals pursuant to these regulations, the Corps must apply for and obtain an LOA.

    (b) An LOA, unless suspended or revoked, may be effective for a period of time not to exceed the expiration date of these regulations.

    (c) If an LOA expires prior to the expiration date of these regulations, the Corps may apply for and obtain a renewal of the Letter of Authorization.

    (d) In the event of projected changes to the activity or to mitigation and monitoring measures required by an LOA, the Corps must apply for and obtain a modification of the Letter of Authorization as described in § 217.237.

    (e) The LOA shall set forth:

    (1) Permissible methods of incidental taking;

    (2) Means of effecting the least practicable adverse impact (i.e., mitigation) on the species, its habitat, and on the availability of the species for subsistence uses; and

    (3) Requirements for monitoring and reporting.

    (f) Issuance of the LOA shall be based on a determination that the level of taking will be consistent with the findings made for the total taking allowable under these regulations.

    (g) Notice of issuance or denial of an LOA shall be published in the Federal Register within thirty days of a determination.

    § 217.237 Renewals and modifications of Letters of Authorization.

    (a) An LOA issued under § 216.106 of this chapter and § 217.236 for the activity identified in § 217.230(a) shall be renewed or modified upon request by the applicant, provided that:

    (1) The proposed specified activity and mitigation, monitoring, and reporting measures, as well as the anticipated impacts, are the same as those described and analyzed for these regulations (excluding changes made pursuant to the adaptive management provision in paragraph (c)(1) of this section; and

    (2) NMFS determines that the mitigation, monitoring, and reporting measures required by the previous LOA under these regulations were implemented.

    (b) For LOA modification or renewal requests by the applicant that include changes to the activity or the mitigation, monitoring, or reporting (excluding changes made pursuant to the adaptive management provision in § 217.247(c)(1)) that do not change the findings made for the regulations or result in no more than a minor change in the total estimated number of takes (or distribution by species or years), NMFS may publish a notice of proposed LOA in the Federal Register, including the associated analysis of the change, and solicit public comment before issuing the LOA.

    (c) An LOA issued under § 216.106 of this chapter and § 217.236 for the activity identified in § 217.230(a) may be modified by NMFS under the following circumstances:

    (1) Adaptive management—NMFS may modify (including augment) the existing mitigation, monitoring, or reporting measures (after consulting with the Corps regarding the practicability of the modifications) if doing so creates a reasonable likelihood of more effectively accomplishing the goals of the mitigation and monitoring set forth in the preamble for these regulations.

    (i) Possible sources of data that could contribute to the decision to modify the mitigation, monitoring, or reporting measures in a LOA:

    (A) Results from the Corps' monitoring from the previous year(s).

    (B) Results from other marine mammal and/or sound research or studies.

    (C) Any information that reveals marine mammals may have been taken in a manner, extent or number not authorized by these regulations or subsequent LOAs.

    (ii) If, through adaptive management, the modifications to the mitigation, monitoring, or reporting measures are substantial, NMFS will publish a notice of proposed LOA in the Federal Register and solicit public comment.

    (2) Emergencies—If NMFS determines that an emergency exists that poses a significant risk to the well-being of the species or stocks of marine mammals specified in § 217.232(b), an LOA may be modified without prior notice or opportunity for public comment. Notice would be published in the Federal Register within thirty days of the action.

    [FR Doc. 2016-20018 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 622 RIN 0648-BG19 Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Reef Fish Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico; Amendment 45 AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice of availability; request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    The Gulf of Mexico (Gulf) Fishery Management Council (Council) has submitted Amendment 45 to the Fishery Management Plan for the Reef Fish Resources of the Gulf of Mexico (FMP) for review, approval, and implementation by NMFS. Amendment 45 would extend the sunset date of the red snapper sector separation measures for an additional 5 years, through the end of the 2022 fishing year. The intent of Amendment 45 is to extend the sector separation measures to allow the Council more time to consider and possibly develop alternative management strategies within the Gulf red snapper recreational sector.

    DATES:

    Written comments must be received on or before October 24, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments on the amendment identified by “NOAA-NMFS-2016-0089” by either 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-2016-0089, click the “Comment Now!” icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments.

    Mail: Submit written comments to Peter Hood, Southeast Regional Office, NMFS, 263 13th Avenue South, St. Petersburg, FL 33701.

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

    Electronic copies of Amendment 45, which includes an environmental assessment, a fishery impact statement, a Regulatory Flexibility Act analysis, and a regulatory impact review, may be obtained from the Southeast Regional Office Web site at http://sero.nmfs.noaa.gov.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Peter Hood, Southeast Regional Office, NMFS, telephone: 727-824-5305; email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act) requires each regional fishery management council to submit any fishery management plan or amendment to any plan to NMFS for review and approval, partial approval, or disapproval. The Magnuson-Stevens Act also requires that NMFS, upon receiving a plan or plan amendment, publish an announcement in the Federal Register notifying the public that the plan or plan amendment is available for review and comment.

    The FMP being revised by Amendment 45 was prepared by the Council and implemented through regulations at 50 CFR part 622 under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.

    Background

    Amendment 40 to the FMP separated the Federal recreational red snapper sector as a way to provide the basis for increased flexibility in future management as well as minimize the chance for recreational quota overruns, which could jeopardize the rebuilding of the red snapper stock (80 FR 22422, April 22, 2015). Amendment 40 established sector separation by defining distinct private angling and Federal for-hire (charter vessel and headboat) components within the recreational sector of those who fish for red snapper, allocated red snapper resources between the components, and established component-specific accountability measures through the use of component annual catch targets to project recreational fishing season lengths. Amendment 40 defined the Federal for-hire component as including operators of vessels with Federal charter vessel/headboat permits for Gulf reef fish and their angler clients. The private angling component was defined as including anglers fishing from private vessels and state-permitted for-hire vessels.

    Amendment 40 also applied a 3-year sunset provision for the regulations implemented through its final rule. The sunset provision maintained the measures for sector separation through the end of the 2017 fishing year, on December 31, 2017. The 3-year sunset provision was included to provide an incentive for the Council to continue to evaluate alternative management measures or programs for the recreational sector. Unless modified, after the 2017 fishing year, on January 1, 2018, the management measures implemented through Amendment 40 will expire and the recreational sector will be managed as a single entity. The Council is currently working to develop and approve other amendments to address the management of the charter and headboat fishing within the Federal for-hire component (Amendments 41 and 42 to the FMP, respectively). The development of these amendments is taking longer than the Council anticipated, and if approved by NMFS, would likely not be effective until after the sector separation provisions expire on December 31, 2017. Therefore, the Council determined there was a need to extend the sunset provision for an additional 5 years past the original sunset date.

    Management Measure Contained in Amendment 45

    Amendment 45 would extend the 3-year sunset provision for the separation of the Federal for-hire and private angling recreational components for Gulf red snapper and associated management measures for an additional 5 years. If implemented, this would extend Gulf recreational red snapper sector separation through the end of the 2022 fishing year, on December 31, 2022, rather than the current sunset date of December 31, 2017. Beginning on January 1, 2023, the red snapper recreational sector would be managed as a single entity without the separate Federal for-hire and private angling components. The Council would need to take further action for these recreational components and management measures to extend beyond the 5-year extension proposed in Amendment 45.

    A proposed rule that would implement Amendment 45 has been drafted. In accordance with the Magnuson-Stevens Act, NMFS is evaluating Amendment 45 to determine whether it is consistent with the FMP, the Magnuson-Stevens Act, and other applicable law. If the determination is affirmative, NMFS will publish the proposed rule in the Federal Register for public review and comment.

    Consideration of Public Comments

    The Council has submitted Amendment 45 for Secretarial review, approval, and implementation. Comments on Amendment 45 must be received by October 24, 2016. Comments received during the respective comment periods, whether specifically directed to the amendment or the proposed rule, will be considered by NMFS in its decision to approve, partially approve, or disapprove Amendment 45. All comments received by NMFS on the amendment or the proposed rule during their respective comment periods will be addressed in the final rule.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: August 22, 2016. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20404 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    81 165 Thursday, August 25, 2016 Notices DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Office of Advocacy and Outreach Notice of Request for Approval of an Information Collection AGENCY:

    Office of Advocacy and Outreach, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice and request for comments; correction.

    SUMMARY:

    This notice announces the intent, in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, of the Office of Advocacy and Outreach (OAO) to request an extension/revision of a currently approved information collection to the Minority Farm Register. The Minority Farm Register is a voluntary register of minority farm and ranch operators, landowners, tenants, and others with an interest in farming or agriculture. The OAO uses the collected information to better inform minority farmers about U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) programs and services.

    DATES:

    We will consider comments received by October 17, 2016, at 5:00 p.m. EST.

    ADDRESSES:

    We invite you to submit comments on this notice. In your comments, include date, volume, and page number of this issue of the Federal Register. You may submit comments by any of the following methods: (1) Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://regulations.gov and follow the online instructions for submitting comments; (2) Mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Office of Advocacy and Outreach, Attn: Kenya Nicholas, Program Director, Whitten Building Room 520-A, Mail Stop 0601, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250; and (3) Fax: (202) 720-7704.

    How to File a Complaint of Discrimination: To file a complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, which may be accessed online at: http://www.ocio.usda.gov/sites/default/files/docs/2012/Complain_combined_6_8_12.pdf, or write a letter signed by you or your authorized representative.

    Send your completed complaint form or letter to USDA by mail, fax, or email:

    Mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture Director, Office of Adjudication 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250-9410.

    Fax: (202) 690-7442.

    Email: [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Agency Contact: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Office of Advocacy and Outreach, Attention: Kenya Nicholas, Program Director, Whitten Building Room 520-A, Mail Stop 0601, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250, Phone: (202) 720-6350, Fax: (202) 720-7704, Email: [email protected]

    Persons with Disabilities: Persons who require alternative means for communication (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.), should contact USDA's TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TDD).

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title: USDA Minority Farm Register.

    Correction: In the Federal Register of August 16, 2016, FR Doc. 2016-19532, on page 54551, make the following correction to the OMB Number:

    The second column, titled “SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:”, should read:

    Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Number: 0508-0005.

    Expiration Date: October 31, 2016.

    Signed August 18, 2016. Christian Obineme, Associate Director, Office of Advocacy and Outreach.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20390 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service [Docket No. APHIS-2016-0061] Notice of Request for Revision to and Extension of Approval of an Information Collection; Untreated Oranges, Tangerines, and Grapefruit From Mexico Transiting the United States to Foreign Countries 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 transit of untreated oranges, tangerines, and grapefruit from Mexico through the United States to foreign countries.

    DATES:

    We will consider all comments that we receive on or before October 24, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments by either of the following methods:

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2016-0061.

    Postal Mail/Commercial Delivery: Send your comment to Docket No. APHIS-2016-0061, 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-2016-0061 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 transit of untreated oranges, tangerines, and grapefruit from Mexico through the United States to foreign countries, contact Mr. David Hanken, National Policy Manager, QPAS, PPQ, APHIS, 4700 River Road Unit 60, Riverdale MD 20737; (301) 851-2195. 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: Untreated Oranges, Tangerines, and Grapefruit from Mexico Transiting the United States to Foreign Countries.

    OMB Control Number: 0579-0303.

    Type of Request: Revision to and extension of approval of an information collection.

    Abstract: The Plant Protection Act (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 or their dissemination within the United States. This authority has been delegated to the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS).

    The plant quarantine safeguard regulations in 7 CFR part 352 allow certain products or articles that are classified as prohibited or restricted under other APHIS regulations in title 7 to be moved into or through the United States under certain conditions. Such articles include fruits and vegetables that are moved into the United States for: (1) A temporary stay where unloading or landing is not intended; (2) unloading or landing for transshipment and exportation; (3) unloading or landing for transportation and exportation; or (4) unloading and entry at a port other than the port of first arrival. Fruits and vegetables that are moved into the United States under these circumstances are subject to inspection and must be handled in accordance with conditions assigned under the safeguard regulations to prevent the introduction and dissemination of plant pests.

    In accordance with § 352.30, untreated oranges, tangerines, and grapefruit from Mexico may be moved into or through the United States in transit to foreign countries under certain conditions to prevent the introduction of plant pests into the United States. These conditions involve the use of information collection activities. Previously, this collection included only a transit permit. In this extension of approval request, we are adding the activities of a transportation and exportation permit, inspection, inspection certificate, and notice of arrival.

    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 0.67 hours per response.

    Respondents: Shippers.

    Estimated annual number of respondents: 3.

    Estimated annual number of responses per respondent: 13.

    Estimated annual number of responses: 39.

    Estimated total annual burden on respondents: 26 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 22nd day of August 2016. Kevin Shea, Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20496 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-34-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Food and Nutrition Service Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request August 22, 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 September 26, 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), [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.

    Food and Nutrition Service

    Title: CACFP National Disqualified List—Forms FNS-843 and FNS-844.

    OMB Control Number: 0584-0584.

    Summary of Collection: Section 17 of the National School Lunch Act, as amended (42 U.S.C. 1766), authorizes the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP). Section 243(c) of Public Law 106-224, the Agricultural Risk Protection Act of 2000, amended section 17(d)(5) of the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act (NSLA) (42 U.S.C. 1766(d)(5)(E)(i) and (ii)) by requiring the Department of Agriculture to maintain a list of institutions, day care home providers, and individuals that have been terminated or otherwise disqualified from CACFP participation. The law also requires the Department to make the list available to State agencies for their use in reviewing applications to participate and to sponsoring organizations to ensure that they do not employ as principals any persons who are disqualified from the program. This statutory mandate has been incorporated into § 226.6(c)(7) of the Program regulations.

    Need and Use of the Information: The Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) uses forms FNS-843 Report of Disqualification from Participation—Institution and Responsible Principals/Individuals and FNS-844 Report of Disqualification from Participation—Individually Disqualified Responsible Principal/Individual or Day Care Home Provider to collect and maintain the disqualification data. The State agencies use these forms, which are accessed through a web-based National Disqualification List system, to collect the contact information and the disqualification information and reasons on all individuals and institutions that have been disqualified and are therefore ineligible to participate in CACFP. The information is collected from State agencies as the disqualifications occur so that the list is kept current. By maintaining this list, the Department ensures program integrity by making the list available to sponsoring organizations and State agencies so that no one who has been disqualified can participate in CACFP. Without this data collection, State agencies and sponsoring organizations would have no way of knowing if an applicant has been disqualified from participating in CACFP in another State.

    Description of Respondents: State, Local, or Tribal Government.

    Number of Respondents: 56.

    Frequency of Responses: Reporting: On occasion; Other (as needed).

    Total Burden Hours: 784.

    Ruth Brown, Departmental Information Collection Clearance Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20371 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-30-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Forest Service Black Hills National Forest, South Dakota and Wyoming, Black Hills Resilient Landscapes Project AGENCY:

    Forest Service, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice of intent to prepare an environmental impact statement.

    SUMMARY:

    The Forest Service is proposing forest resilience management actions on portions of approximately 1,098,000 acres of National Forest System lands managed by the Black Hills National Forest.

    The project area consists of lands within the treatment areas designated on the Black Hills National Forest in South Dakota and Wyoming under the authority of the Healthy Forests Restoration Act (HFRA, 16 U.S.C. 6591). The Black Hills Resilient Landscapes Project will be carried out in accordance with HFRA title VI, section 602(d)—Insect and Disease Infestation.

    Since 1997, the Black Hills National Forest has experienced epidemic levels of mountain pine beetle infestation. The epidemic now appears to be slowing in most parts of the forest, but the infestation has left behind a changed landscape. Action is needed to address accumulations of fuels, undesirable distribution of forest structures, and other conditions that may decrease the forest's resilience to disturbance.

    The purpose of the project is to move landscape-level vegetation conditions in the project area toward objectives of the Black Hills National Forest Land and Resource Management Plan, as amended, in order to increase ecosystem resilience to insect infestation and other natural disturbances, contribute to public safety and the local economy, and reduce risk of wildfire to landscapes and communities.

    The Forest Service will prepare an Environmental Impact Statement to disclose the potential environmental effects of implementing resilience treatments on National Forest System lands within the project area.

    DATES:

    Comments concerning the scope of the analysis must be received by September 26, 2016. The draft environmental impact statement is expected in April 2017 and the final environmental impact statement is expected in October 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Send written comments to BHRL Project, Black Hills National Forest, 1019 North 5th Street, Custer, SD 57730, or via facsimile to 605-673-9350, c/o BHRL Project. Written comments also may be hand-delivered to the above address between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Mountain time, Monday through Friday except federal holidays. Comments may also be submitted electronically at http://tinyurl.com/BHRLProjectComment.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Rhonda O'Byrne, Project Manager, at 605-642-4622. Individuals who use telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1-800-877-8339 between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., Eastern Time, Monday through Friday.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Purpose and Need for Action

    Since 1997, the Black Hills National Forest has experienced epidemic levels of mountain pine beetle infestation. Beetles have infested and killed trees on approximately 215,000 acres. In some areas, there are very few live, mature pine remaining. In others, the beetles only attacked pockets of trees, or very few trees. The Forest Service and its partners have responded to the epidemic by reducing stand susceptibility to beetle infestation, recovering the value of some infested trees, protecting recreation areas, and decreasing fuel build-up in some areas.

    The epidemic now appears to be slowing in most parts of the forest, but the beetles have left behind a changed landscape. Much of the forest is more open. The distribution of pine forest structure has moved away from desired conditions. The Black Hills National Forest Land and Resource Management Plan (“Forest Plan”) sets these desired conditions. They are a critical part of maintaining a landscape that provides diverse habitat and is resilient to disturbance.

    Pine forest structure objectives apply to most of the National Forest. The current condition of some structural stages is inconsistent with the desired condition. Over time, the open and young forest structures resulting from the infestation are likely to develop characteristics that will decrease the forest's resilience to insect infestation, wildfire, and other disturbances. In the newly open stands, natural reforestation is occurring as pine seedlings become established. Ponderosa pine regenerates prolifically in the Black Hills, and often there are so many small trees that they become crowded and must compete for limited resources. Growth slows, stems remain thin, and heavy snow can result in widespread damage. There is a need to manage these new stands to prevent stagnation and allow transition to other structural stages.

    Mountain pine beetles most often infest dense pine stands. As a result of the epidemic, acreage of mature, moderately dense pine stands has decreased below Forest Plan objective levels. Mature, dense pine stands are still slightly above objective levels, though most of them are concentrated in a few areas that experienced less beetle infestation. There is a need to increase mature, moderately dense pine stands and maintain mature, dense pine stands. Late succession pine forests in the Black Hills provide habitat diversity and enhance scenery. There are fewer late succession stands than desired, and there is a need to maintain and enhance old stands to work toward meeting this objective.

    The beetle infestation also has resulted in hazardous fuels in the form of dead trees. The trees usually fall within a few years of being infested and can pile up and cause uncharacteristically high fuel loadings. These fuels are unlikely to ignite easily, but if they do catch fire they can burn intensely, damaging soils and causing problems for firefighters. In addition, the dead trees pose an increased hazard to public health and safety, infrastructure, and communities. There is a need to reduce this hazard, especially near populated areas and critical infrastructure.

    Mature ponderosa pine are often resistant to fire, especially if there is some space between trees or if they have had periodic exposure to low-level fire. Small pine trees are not resistant to fire, and dense patches can allow a fire to spread both vertically and horizontally. There is a need to thin out these small trees to prevent development of a fire hazard. Historically, fire was a major force shaping the composition and distribution of Black Hills plant communities and ecological processes. Fire suppression over the last 140 years has altered plant communities and allowed fuels to accumulate, especially in less accessible areas. There is a need to use prescribed fire to efficiently reduce fuel buildup while providing the ecosystem benefits of a disturbance process that native species evolved with.

    Ponderosa pine covers most of the Black Hills. Other tree species and grasslands diversify habitat and scenery while increasing ecosystem resilience to disturbance. Hardwood trees such as aspen and oak are resistant to fire and to the insects that infest pine. Aspen stands recover quickly from disturbance. Over time, however, these areas can become overgrown with conifers. This encroachment can cause old hardwood stands and grasslands to lose vigor and gradually disappear. There is a need to maintain and perpetuate these ecosystem components.

    In response to these needs, the Forest Service is proposing actions to move landscape-level vegetation conditions in the project area toward objectives of the Forest Plan in order to increase ecosystem resilience to insect infestation and other natural disturbances, contribute to public safety and the local economy, and reduce risk of wildfire to landscapes and communities.

    The Black Hills National Forest Advisory Board has agreed to serve as the formal collaborator for this project under HFRA authority.

    Proposed Action

    The proposed action addresses the purpose and need through a combination of forest vegetation management actions. Activities would start in approximately 2018 and continue for up to 10 years.

    Where heavy down fuels or dense stands of small pine exist adjacent to residential areas, main access roads, major power lines, and other developments or infrastructure, the project would reduce fire hazard by thinning, chipping, piling, or otherwise removing or rearranging fuels. Work would focus on priority areas. Where slopes are too steep for other types of treatment, the project would burn pockets of hazardous fuels. These activities would occur on 3,000 to 7,000 acres annually. Fuel reduction work would include cutting of standing beetle-killed trees that could fall and block main access roads. The project proposes prescribed burning on up to 10,000 acres per year, primarily in the southern half of the Black Hills.

    The project would cut encroaching pine from areas of hardwoods and grasslands. Pine removal from aspen would take place on up to 6,000 acres. Pine removal from oak stands would take place on up to 3,000 acres. Pine would be cut from encroached grasslands on up to 5,600 acres. Regeneration of declining aspen stands would occur on up to 5,000 acres.

    Currently, approximately 43 percent of project area pine stands consist of open, mature forest, while the objective is 25 percent. The project proposes to convert some of these mature stands to young stands by removing some or all of the mature trees if there are enough pine seedlings and saplings to make a new stand. This may occur on up to a total of about 100,000 acres out of the total 300,000 acres of open, mature pine forest. The intent of this project is not to create very large areas of forest that is all alike. Therefore, the project would include limits on the maximum contiguous acreage of any one forest condition that could be created.

    Existing roads provide access to most of the potential treatment stands. To conduct proposed activities in areas without existing roads, it may be necessary to construct up to 15 miles of permanent roads and 44 miles of temporary roads.

    The project would conduct fuel treatments in some of the remaining mature, dense pine stands. Because the objective is to increase moderately dense mature forest, mature trees in these stands would generally not be cut. There would be exceptions, such as removing beetle-infested trees or thinning to reduce hazardous fuels adjacent to homes.

    The forest is below objectives for late succession forest. In some stands that are nearing late succession conditions, especially those with open canopies, the project would thin or burn understory vegetation to enhance late succession characteristics and increase stand resilience.

    Removing some of the small trees in young stands (precommercial thinning) increases the vigor of the remaining saplings and prevents stagnation. The project would precommercially thin up to 25,000 acres per year.

    Connected actions include road improvement, non-native invasive weed treatment, and other activities. The proposed action includes design features and mitigation necessary to ensure project compliance with directives, regulations, and Forest Plan standards and guidelines. Go to http://tinyurl.com/BHRLProject for more detailed information and maps of the project area and proposed treatments.

    Forest Plan Amendments

    If necessary to meet the project's purpose and need, the Forest Service may need to amend the Forest Plan in regard to reducing fuel loading by removing logging slash in certain areas.

    Responsible Official

    Mark Van Every, Black Hills National Forest Supervisor.

    Nature of Decision To Be Made

    This proposed action is a proposal, not a decision. The Forest Supervisor of the Black Hills National Forest will decide whether to implement the action as proposed, whether to take no action at this time, or whether to implement any alternatives that are analyzed. The Forest Supervisor will also decide whether to amend the Forest Plan if necessary to implement the decision.

    Preliminary Issues

    Anticipated issues include effects on threatened, endangered, and sensitive species, changes to scenery, and the unique fire hazards posed by fallen trees and regenerating stands.

    Scoping Process

    This notice of intent initiates the scoping process, which guides the development of the environmental impact statement. It is important that reviewers provide their comments at such times and in such manner that they are useful to the agency's preparation of the environmental impact statement. Therefore, comments should be provided prior to the close of the comment period and should clearly articulate the reviewer's concerns and contentions.

    Comments received in response to this solicitation, including names and addresses of those who comment, will be part of the public record for this proposed action. Comments submitted anonymously will be accepted and considered, however.

    Dated: August 15, 2016. Jim Zornes, Acting Forest Supervisor.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20382 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-11-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [B-55-2016] Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) 281—Miami, Florida; Notification of Proposed Production Activity Carrier InterAmerica Corporation (Heating, Ventilating and Air Conditioning Systems); Miami, Florida

    Miami-Dade County, grantee of FTZ 281, submitted a notification of proposed production activity to the FTZ Board on behalf of Carrier InterAmerica Corporation (Carrier), located in Miami, Florida. The notification conforming to the requirements of the regulations of the FTZ Board (15 CFR 400.22) was received on August 5, 2016.

    The Carrier facility is located within Site 3 of FTZ 281. The facility is used to combine and segregate mini-split and multi-split type heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. Pursuant to 15 CFR 400.14(b), FTZ activity would be limited to the specific foreign-status materials and components and specific finished products described in the submitted notification (as described below) and subsequently authorized by the FTZ Board.

    Production under FTZ procedures could exempt Carrier from customs duty payments on the foreign-status components used in export production. On its domestic sales, Carrier would be able to choose the duty rates during customs entry procedures that apply to mini-split and multi-split type HVAC systems and their component evaporator and condensing units (duty rates range from 1% to 2.2%) for the foreign-status inputs noted below. Customs duties also could possibly be deferred or reduced on foreign-status production equipment.

    The components and materials sourced from abroad include: Mini-split type HVAC systems, evaporator units and condensing units (duty rates range from 1% to 2.2%).

    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 October 4, 2016.

    A copy of the notification will be available for public inspection at the Office of the Executive Secretary, Foreign-Trade Zones Board, Room 21013, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230-0002, and in the “Reading Room” section of the Board's Web site, which is accessible via www.trade.gov/ftz.

    For further information, contact Diane Finver at [email protected] or (202) 482-1367.

    Dated: August 18, 2016. Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20327 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Bureau of Industry and Security President's Export Council Subcommittee on Export Administration; Notice of Partially Closed Meeting

    The President's Export Council Subcommittee on Export Administration (PECSEA) will meet on September 15, 2016, 10:00 a.m., at the U.S. Department of Commerce, Herbert C. Hoover Building, Room 3884, 14th Street between Pennsylvania and Constitution Avenues NW., Washington, DC The PECSEA provides advice on matters pertinent to those portions of the Export Administration Act, as amended, that deal with United States policies of encouraging trade with all countries with which the United States has diplomatic or trading relations and of controlling trade for national security and foreign policy reasons.

    Agenda Open Session 1. Opening remarks by the Chairman and Vice Chairman. 2. Opening remarks by the Bureau of Industry and Security. 3. Export Control Reform Update. 4. Presentation of papers or comments by the Public. 5. Discussion of Reexport Technical Advisory Committee 6. Single Form Update 7. Subcommittee Updates 8. Discussion of Topics for Next Administration Action Closed Session 9. Discussion of matters determined to be exempt from the provisions relating to public meetings found in 5 U.S.C. app. 2 §§ 10(a)(1) and 10(a)(3).

    The open session will be accessible via teleconference to 25 participants on a first come, first served basis. To join the conference, submit inquiries to Ms. Yvette Springer at [email protected] no later than September 8, 2016.

    A limited number of seats will be available for the public session. Reservations are not accepted. To the extent that time permits, members of the public may present oral statements to the Committee. The public may submit written statements at any time before or after the meeting. However, to facilitate the distribution of public presentation materials to the Committee members, the Committee suggests that presenters forward the public presentation materials prior to the meeting to Ms. Springer via email.

    The Assistant Secretary for Administration, with the concurrence of the delegate of the General Counsel, formally determined on March 9, 2016, pursuant to Section 10(d) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. app. 2 § (10)(d)), that the portion of the meeting dealing with pre-decisional changes to the Commerce Control List and U.S. export control policies shall be exempt from the provisions relating to public meetings found in 5 U.S.C. app. 2 §§ 10(a)(1) and 10(a)(3). The remaining portions of the meeting will be open to the public.

    For more information, call Yvette Springer at (202) 482-2813.

    Dated: August 18, 2016. Kevin J. Wolf, Assistant Secretary for Export Administration.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20335 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-JT-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration President's Export Council: Meeting of the President's Export Council AGENCY:

    International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Notice of an open meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The President's Export Council (Council) will hold a meeting to deliberate on recommendations related to promoting the expansion of U.S. exports. Priority topics will include: the Trans-Pacific Partnership and Board appointments for the Export-Import Bank of the United States. Additional topics may include: the Administration's trade agenda, infrastructure investment, workforce readiness, access to capital for microbusinesses and SMEs, and export control reform. The final agenda will be posted at least one week in advance of the meeting on the President's Export Council Web site at http://trade.gov/pec.

    DATES:

    September 14, 2016 at 9:30 a.m. (ET)

    ADDRESSES:

    The President's Export Council meeting will be broadcast via live webcast on the Internet at http://whitehouse.gov/live.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Tricia Van Orden, Designated Federal Officer, President's Export Council, Room 4043, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230, telephone: 202-482-5876, email: [email protected]

    Press inquiries should be directed to the International Trade Administration's Office of Public Affairs, telephone: 202-482-3809.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background: The President's Export Council was first established by Executive Order on December 20, 1973 to advise the President on matters relating to U.S. export trade and to report to the President on its activities and recommendations for expanding U.S. exports. The President's Export Council was renewed most recently by Executive Order 13708 of September 30, 2015, for the two-year period ending September 30, 2017. This Committee is established in accordance with the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), as amended, 5 U.S.C. App.

    Public Submissions: The public is invited to submit written statements to the President's Export Council. Statements must be received by 5:00PM ET on September 12, 2016 by either of the following methods:

    a. Electronic Submissions

    Submit statements electronically to Tricia Van Orden, Executive Secretary, President's Export Council via email: [email protected]

    b. Paper Submissions

    Send paper statements to Tricia Van Orden, Designated Federal Officer, President's Export Council, Room 4043, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC, 20230.

    Statements will be posted on the President's Export Council Web site (http://trade.gov/pec) without change, including any business or personal information provided such as names, addresses, email addresses, or telephone numbers. All statements received, including attachments and other supporting materials, are part of the public record and subject to public disclosure. You should submit only information that you wish to make publicly available.

    Meeting minutes: Copies of the Council's meeting minutes will be available within ninety (90) days of the meeting.

    Dated: August 18, 2016. Tricia Van Orden, Designated Federal Officer, President's Export Council.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20294 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DR-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [Docket No. 160811727-6727-01] RIN 0625-XC023 U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework Self-Certification Notice AGENCY:

    International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Notice of discontinuation of the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework.

    SUMMARY:

    The International Trade Administration (ITA) issues this notice regarding the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework (U.S.-EU Safe Harbor). As of August 1, 2016, the Department of Commerce no longer accepts new submissions of self-certification to the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor. As of October 31, 2016, the Department of Commerce will no longer accept re-certification submissions to the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor.

    DATES:

    The Department of Commerce stopped accepting new submissions of self-certification to the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor on August 1, 2016. As of October 31, 2016, the Department of Commerce will no longer accept re-certification submissions to the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Shannon Coe, International Trade Administration, 202-482-6013 or [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On October 6, 2015, the European Court of Justice issued a judgment 1 declaring as “invalid” the European Commission's Decision 2000/520/EC of 26 July 2000 “on the adequacy of the protection provided by the safe harbour privacy principles and related frequently asked questions issued by the US Department of Commerce.” According to that decision, the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework has not been a valid mechanism to comply with EU data protection requirements when transferring personal data from the European Union to the United States.

    1http://curia.europa.eu/juris/document/document.jsf?text=&docid=169195&pageIndex=0&doclang=EN&mode=req&dir=&occ=first&part=1&cid=125031.

    On July 12, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker joined European Union Commissioner Věra Jourová to announce 2 the approval of the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Framework,3 replacing the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor. The EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Framework provides companies on both sides of the Atlantic with a mechanism to comply with European Union data protection requirements when transferring personal data from the European Union to the United States in support of transatlantic commerce. The Department of Commerce started accepting certifications 4 to the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Framework 5 on August 1st.

    2https://www.commerce.gov/news/secretary-speeches/2016/07/remarks-us-secretary-commerce-penny-pritzker-eu-us-privacy-shield.

    3http://ec.europa.eu/justice/data-protection/files/annexes_eu-us_privacy_shield_en.pdf.

    4https://www.commerce.gov/sites/commerce.gov/files/media/files/2016/how_to_join_privacy_shield_sc_cmts.pdf.

    5http://ec.europa.eu/justice/data-protection/files/annexes_eu-us_privacy_shield_en.pdf.

    As of August 1, 2016, the Department of Commerce stopped accepting new submissions for self-certification to the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework; as of October 31, 2016, the Department of Commerce will stop accepting re-certification submissions to the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework. The Department will maintain the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor List; 6 pursuant to the Safe Harbor Frequently Asked Question on Self-Certification, the commitment to adhere to the Safe Harbor Principles is not time-limited, and a participating organization must continue to apply the Safe Harbor Principles to data received under the Safe Harbor.

    6https://safeharbor.export.gov/list.aspx.

    Please note that the Department of Commerce will continue to administer the U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbor Framework.

    For more information on the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Framework, please visit www.privacyshield.gov.

    Dated: August 17, 2016. Praveen Dixit, Acting Assistant Secretary for Industry and Analysis, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20421 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-570-983] Drawn Stainless Steel Sinks From the People's Republic of China: Notice of Court Decision Not in Harmony With Amended Final Determination Pursuant to Court Decision AGENCY:

    Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce

    SUMMARY:

    On July 14, 2016, the United States Court of International Trade (“CIT”) sustained the redetermination made by the Department of Commerce (“Department”) pursuant to the CIT's remand of the final determination in the antidumping duty (“AD”) investigation on drawn stainless steel sinks (“sinks”) from the People's Republic of China (“PRC”). Specifically, the CIT affirmed the Department's reliance on Thai data to value stainless steel inputs and revised calculation of selling, general, administrative (“SG&A”) expenses on redetermination. Accordingly, the Department is hereby notifying the public that the final judgment in this case is not in harmony with the final affirmative determination in the underlying AD investigation and, as there is a now a final and conclusive decision in this case, is amending the final determination with respect to the dumping margins determined for Guangdong Dongyuan Kitchenware Industrial Company, Ltd. (“Dongyuan”), Foshan Zhaoshun Trade Co., Ltd. and Zhongshan Superte Kitchenware Co., Ltd. (collectively, “Superte”), as well as all other companies that received a separate rate.

    DATES:

    Effective July 24, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Eve Wang, Office III, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-6231.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    Subsequent to the publication of the Final Determination1 in the underlying AD investigation of sinks from the PRC, Dongyuan (a respondent in the underlying investigation) and Elkay Manufacturing Company (the petitioner in the underlying investigation) filed complaints with the CIT challenging aspects of the methodology used to determine the dumping margins in the Final Determination.

    1See Drawn Stainless Steel Sinks From the People's Republic of China: Investigation, Final Determination, 78 FR 13019 (February 26, 2013), as amended by Drawn Stainless Steel Sinks from the People's Republic of China: Amended Final Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value and Antidumping Duty Order, 78 FR 21592 (April 11, 2013), (collectively, “Final Determination”).

    On December 22, 2014, the CIT granted the Department's partial voluntary remand request to reconsider the use of Global Trade Atlas (“GTA”) import data for Thailand to value cold-rolled stainless steel coil, and also directed the Department to reconsider its methodology of accounting for SG&A expenses in the normal value calculations.2

    2See Elkay Mfg. Co. v. United States, Consol. Court No. 13-00176, Slip Op. 14-150 (CIT 2014) (“Sinks Remand”), at 3.

    Pursuant to the CIT's instructions on remand, the Department further evaluated the information on the record regarding the valuation of cold-rolled stainless steel coil inputs and determined to continue to use the GTA import data for Thailand to value these inputs.3 Furthermore, in compliance with the remand directive, the Department classified SG&A labor items as SG&A expenses in each company's surrogate financial ratio calculation, resulting in a change to the margins calculated for each respondent.4 On July 14, 2016, the CIT affirmed the remand redetermination.5

    3See Final Results of Redetermination Pursuant to Court Remand, dated April 22, 2015 (“Final Redetermination”), at 6 and 24.

    4Id.

    5See Elkay Mfg. Co. v. United States, Consol. Court No. 13-00176, Slip Op. 16-69 (CIT 2016).

    Timken Notice

    In Timken Co. v. United States, 893 F.2d 337, 341 (Fed. Cir. 1990) (“Timken”), as clarified by Diamond Sawblades Mfrs. Coalition v. United States, 626 F.3d 1374 (Fed. Cir. 2010) (“Diamond Sawblades”), the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (“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 July 14, 2016, judgment in this case constitutes a final court decision that is not in harmony with the Department's Final Determination. This notice is published in fulfillment of the publication requirements of Timken.

    Amended Final Determination

    As a result of the Court's final decision with respect to this case, the Department is amending the Final Determination with respect to Dongyuan, Superte, and all other companies that received a separate rate in the Final Determination. The revised weighted-average dumping margins for the July 1, 2011, through December 31, 2011, period of investigation are as follows:

    Exporter Producer Weighted-
  • average
  • margin
  • (percent)
  • Zhongshan Superte Kitchenware Co., Ltd./Zhongshan Superte Kitchenware Co., Ltd. invoiced as Foshan Zhaoshun Trade Co., Ltd Zhongshan Superte Kitchenware Co., Ltd 50.11 Guangdong Dongyuan Kitchenware Industrial Co., Ltd Guangdong Dongyuan Kitchenware Industrial Co., Ltd 36.59 B&R Industries Limited Xinhe Stainless Steel Products Co., Ltd. and Jiamen XHHL Stainless Steel Manufacturing Co., Ltd 43.35 Elkay (China) Kitchen Solutions, Co., Ltd Elkay (China) Kitchen Solutions, Co., Ltd 43.35 Feidong Import and Export Co., Ltd Jiangmen Liantai Kitchen Equipment Co.; Jiangmen Xinhe Stainless Steel Product Co., Ltd 43.35 Foshan Shunde MingHao Kitchen Utensils Co., Ltd Foshan Shunde MingHao Kitchen Utensils Co., Ltd 43.35 Franke Asia Sourcing Ltd Guangdong YingAo Kitchen Utensils Co., Ltd.; Franke (China) Kitchen System Co., Ltd 43.35 Grand Hill Work Company Zhongshan Xintian Hardware Co., Ltd 43.35 Guangdong G-Top Import and Export Co., Ltd Jiangmen Jin Ke Ying Stainless Steel Wares Co., Ltd 43.35 Guangdong Yingao Kitchen Utensils Co., Ltd Guangdong Yingao Kitchen Utensils Co., Ltd 43.35 Hangzhou Heng's Industries Co., Ltd Hangzhou Heng's Industries Co., Ltd 43.35 J&C Industries Enterprise Limited Zhongshan Superte Kitchenware Co., Ltd 43.35 Jiangmen Hongmao Trading Co., Ltd Xinhe Stainless Steel Products Co., Ltd 43.35 Jiangmen New Star Hi-Tech Enterprise Ltd Jiangmen New Star Hi-Tech Enterprise Ltd 43.35 Jiangmen Pioneer Import & Export Co., Ltd Jiangmen Ouert Kitchen Appliance Manufacturing Co., Ltd.; Jiangmen XHHL Stainless Steel Manufacturing Co., Ltd 43.35 Jiangxi Zoje Kitchen & Bath Industry Co., Ltd Jiangxi Offidun Industry Co. Ltd 43.35 Ningbo Oulin Kitchen Utensils Co., Ltd Ningbo Oulin Kitchen Utensils Co., Ltd 43.35 Primy Cooperation Limited Primy Cooperation Limited 43.35 Shenzhen Kehuaxing Industrial Ltd.6 Shenzhen Kehuaxing Industrial Ltd 43.35 Shunde Foodstuffs Import & Export Company Limited of Guangdong Bonke Kitchen & Sanitary Industrial Co., Ltd 43.35 Zhongshan Newecan Enterprise Development Corporation Zhongshan Xintian Hardware Co., Ltd 43.35 Zhuhai Kohler Kitchen & Bathroom Products Co., Ltd Zhuhai Kohler Kitchen & Bathroom Products Co., Ltd 43.35
    Cash Deposit Requirements

    Since the Final Determination, the Department has established a new cash deposit rate for Dongyuan, Superte, Guangdong Yingao Kitchen Utensils Co., Ltd., and Zhongshan Newecan Enterprise Development Corporation, and further determined that Feidong Import & Export Co., Ltd. is no longer eligible for a separate rate and is considered part of the PRC-wide entity.7 Therefore, this amended final determination does not change the later-established cash deposit rates for those exporters. All other companies identified in the table above do not have a superseding cash deposit rate and, therefore, the Department will issue revised cash deposit instructions to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, adjusting the cash deposit rate for these separate-rate companies to 43.35 percent, effective July 24, 2016.

    6 Though Shenzhen Kehuaxing Industrial Ltd. was not granted a separate rate at the time of the Final Determination, it was later determined to be eligible for a separate in the underlying investigation in a prior amended final determination and Timken notice. See Drawn Stainless Steel Sinks From the People's Republic of China: Notice of Court Decision Not in Harmony With Final Determination of Antidumping Duty Investigation, 79 FR 63079 (October 22, 2014).

    7See Drawn Stainless Steel Sinks from the People's Republic of China: Final Results of the Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2012-2014, 80 FR 69644 (November 10, 2015).

    Notification to Interested Parties

    This notice is issued and published in accordance with sections 516A(e)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Act.

    Dated: August 5, 2016. Ronald K. Lorentzen, Acting Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20428 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-533-863, A-475-832, A-570-026, A-580-878, A-583-856] Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products From India, Italy, the People's Republic of China, the Republic of Korea, and Taiwan: Notice of Correction to the Antidumping Duty Orders AGENCY:

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

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Julia Hancock or Susan Pulongbarit at (202) 482-1394 and (202) 482-4031, respectively (Italy), Kabir Archuletta at (202) 482-2593 (India); Elfi Blum or Lingjun Wang (Korea) at (202) 482-0197 or (202) 482-2316, respectively; Nancy Decker or Andrew Huston at (202) 482-0196 or (202) 482-4261, respectively (PRC); or Shanah Lee or Paul Stolz at (202) 482-6386 and (202) 482-4474, respectively (Taiwan), AD/CVD Operations, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On July 25, 2016, the Department of Commerce (the Department) published the Antidumping Duty Orders on certain corrosion-resistant steel products from India, Italy, the People's Republic of China (PRC), the Republic of Korea (Korea), and Taiwan.1 The Antidumping Duty Orders contained unintended errors regarding (1) the estimated weighted-average dumping margins for the PRC and (2) the date that the extended period of provisional measures expired.

    1See Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products from India, Italy, the People's Republic of China, the Republic of Korea and Taiwan: Amended Final Affirmative Antidumping Determination for India and Taiwan, and Antidumping Duty Orders, 81 FR 48390 (July 25, 2016) (Antidumping Duty Orders).

    Estimated Weighted-Average Dumping Margins for PRC

    As stated in the Initiation Notice,2 the Department calculates combination rates for respondents that are eligible for a separate rate in non-market economy antidumping duty investigations. Policy Bulletin 05.1 describes this practice.3 While we correctly listed the PRC rates as combination rates in the PRC Final Determination,4 we did not list any of the PRC rates as exporter/producer combination rates in the Antidumping Duty Orders. 5

    2See 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) (Initiation Notice).

    3See Enforcement and Compliance's Policy Bulletin No. 05.1, regarding, “Separate-Rates Practice and Application of Combination Rates in Antidumping Investigations involving Non-Market Economy Countries,” (April 5, 2005) (Policy Bulletin 05.1), available on the Department's Web site at http://enforcement.trade.gov/policy/bull05-1.pdf.

    4See Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products from the People's Republic of China: Final Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value and Final Affirmative Critical Circumstances Determination, in Part, 81 FR 35316 (June 2, 2016) (PRC Final Determination).

    5See Antidumping Duty Orders at 48393.

    The PRC weighted-average antidumping duty margins and cash deposit rates, as listed in the Antidumping Duty Orders, should all be corrected to reflect the following exporter/producer combination rates:

    Exporter Producer Weighted-
  • average dumping
  • margin
  • (percent)
  • Cash deposit rate
  • (percent)
  • Yieh Phui (China) Technomaterial Co., Ltd Yieh Phui (China) Technomaterial Co., Ltd 209.97 199.43 Jiangyin Zongcheng Steel Co. Ltd Jiangyin Zongcheng Steel Co. Ltd 209.97 199.43 Union Steel China Union Steel China 209.97 199.43 PRC-Wide Entity 209.97 199.43
    Provisional Measures

    In the Antidumping Duty Orders, we incorrectly listed the last day of the extended period of provisional measures as July 2, 2016.6 The correct last day of the extended period of provisional measures is July 1, 2016. Therefore, in accordance with section 733(d) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act) and our practice, the Department will instruct U.S. Customs and Border Protection to terminate the suspension of liquidation and to liquidate, without regard to antidumping duties, unliquidated entries of certain corrosion-resistant steel products from India, Italy, Korea, and the PRC 7 entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after July 2, 2016, the date on which the provisional measure period expired, until and through the day preceding the date of publication of the International Trade Commission's final injury determinations in the Federal Register.

    6See Antidumping Duty Orders, at 48392.

    7 In the Antidumping Duty Orders, we inadvertently stated that (1) antidumping duties will be assessed on unliquidated entries of certain corrosion-resistant steel products from Taiwan entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after January 4, 2016, the date of publication of the preliminary determination, and (2) the last day of the extended period of provisional measures for Taiwan was July 2, 2016. These are both incorrect. Because Taiwan had a negative preliminary determination, the provisional measures period did not expire for Taiwan. See Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products from Taiwan: Negative Preliminary Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value, 81 FR 72 (January 4, 2016). Thus, we began to suspend liquidation of all entries of certain corrosion-resistant steel products from Taiwan on June 2, 2016, the date of publication of Taiwan Final Determination. See Certain Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products from Taiwan: Final Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value and Final Affirmative Determination of Critical Circumstances, in Part, 81 FR 35313 (June 2, 2016) (Taiwan Final Determination).

    We are now correcting the Antidumping Duty Orders for India, Italy, the PRC, Korea, and Taiwan, as noted above.

    These corrections to the Antidumping Duty Orders for India, Italy, the PRC, Korea, and Taiwan are published in accordance with sections 777(i)(1) of the Act.

    Dated: August 19, 2016. Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20429 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-570-001] Potassium Permanganate From the People's Republic of China: Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2014 AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce (“the Department”) is conducting an administrative review of the antidumping duty order on potassium permanganate from the People's Republic of China (“PRC”). We gave interested parties an opportunity to comment on the Preliminary Results, and based upon our analysis of the comments and information received, we made changes to the margin calculation for these final results. The final dumping margin is listed below in the “Final Results of the Administrative Review” section of this notice. The period of review (“POR”) is January 1, 2014, through December 31, 2014.

    DATES:

    Effective August 25, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Paul Walker, AD/CVD Operations, Office V, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone 202.482.0413.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    The Department published the Preliminary Results on February 10, 2015.1 This review covers one respondent, Pacific Accelerator Limited (“PAL”).2 Between July 15-20, 2016, PAL and Petitioner submitted case and rebuttal briefs.3 On August 3, 2016, the Department held a hearing limited to issues raised in the case and rebuttal briefs.

    1See Potassium Permanganate from the People's Republic of China: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2013, 81 FR 7751 (February 16, 2016) (“Preliminary Results”).

    2See Initiation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Administrative Reviews and Request for Revocation in Part, 79 FR 11401 (February 28, 2014).

    3See PAL's July 15, 2016 and July 20, 2016 submissions; Petitioner's July 15, 2016 and July 20, 2016 submissions.

    Scope of the Order

    Imports covered by this order are shipments of potassium permanganate, an inorganic chemical produced in free-flowing, technical, and pharmaceutical grades. Potassium permanganate is currently classifiable under item 2841.61.00 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (“HTSUS”). Although the HTSUS item number is provided for convenience and customs purposes, the written description of the merchandise remains dispositive.

    Analysis of Comments Received

    All issues raised in the case and rebuttal briefs by parties in this review are addressed in the I&D Memo.4 A list of the issues which parties raised is attached to this notice as an appendix. The I&D Memo is a public document and is on file in the Central Records Unit (“CRU”), Room B8024 of the main Department of Commerce building, as well as electronically via Enforcement and Compliance's Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Centralized Electronic Service System (“ACCESS”). ACCESS is available to registered users at http://access.trade.gov and to all users in the CRU. In addition, a complete version of the I&D Memo can be accessed directly on the Internet at http://enforcement.trade.gov/frn/index.html. The signed I&D Memo and the electronic version are identical in content.

    4See Memorandum to Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance, from Christian Marsh, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations, “Potassium Permanganate from the People's Republic of China: Issues and Decision Memorandum for the Final Results,” dated concurrently with and hereby adopted by this notice (“I&D Memo”).

    Changes Since the Preliminary Results

    Based on a review of the record and comments received from interested parties regarding our Preliminary Results, and for the reasons explained in the I&D Memo, we revised the margin calculation for PAL. Specifically, we made an adjustment to PAL's U.S. price for the irrecoverable value-added tax which was not rebated to PAL's PRC producer upon the export of the subject merchandise.

    Final Results of the Review

    The dumping margins for the final results of this administrative review are as follows:

    5 Consistent with Comment V in the I&D Memo, the Department has determined that it will calculate per-unit assessment and cash deposit rates.

    Exporter Weighted-average margin (dollars/kilogram) 5 PAL 2.88 Disclosure

    The Department will disclose calculations performed for these final results to the parties within five days of the date of publication of this notice, in accordance with section 351.224(b) of the Department's regulations.

    Assessment Rates

    Pursuant to section 751(a)(2)(A) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.212(b), the Department will determine, and CBP shall assess, antidumping duties on all appropriate entries of subject merchandise in accordance with the final results of this review. The Department intends to issue appropriate assessment instructions directly to CBP 15 days after publication of the final results of this administrative review.

    In accordance with 19 CFR 351.212(b)(1), we are calculating importer- (or customer-) specific assessment rates for the merchandise subject to this review. For assessment purposes, we calculated a per-unit rate for each importer (or customer) by dividing the total dumping margins for reviewed sales to that party by the total sales quantity associated with those transactions. We will direct CBP to assess the resulting per-unit rate against the entered quantity of the subject merchandise.6 We will instruct CBP to assess antidumping duties on all appropriate entries covered by this review when the importer- (or customer-) specific assessment rate is above de minimis. Where an importer- (or customer-) specific assessment rate is zero or de minimis, we will instruct CBP to liquidate the appropriate entries without regard to antidumping duties.

    6See Antidumping Proceedings: Calculation of the Weighted-Average Dumping Margin and Assessment Rate in Certain Antidumping Proceedings: Final Modification, 77 FR 8101, 8103 (February 14, 2012).

    Cash Deposit Requirements

    The following cash deposit requirements will be effective upon publication of the final results of this administrative review for all shipments of the subject merchandise entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after the publication date of the final results, as provided for by section 751(a)(2)(C) of the Act: (1) For the exporter listed above, the cash deposit rate will be the rate established in the final results of review; (2) for previously investigated or reviewed PRC and non-PRC exporters not listed above that have separate rates, the cash deposit rate will continue to be the exporter-specific rate published for the most recent period; (3) for all PRC exporters of subject merchandise that have not been found to be entitled to a separate rate, the cash deposit rate will be that for the PRC-wide entity, which is 128.94 percent; 7 and (4) for all non-PRC exporters of subject merchandise which have not received their own rate, the cash deposit rate will be the rate applicable to the PRC exporter that supplied that non-PRC exporter. The cash deposit requirements, when imposed, shall remain in effect until further notice.

    7See Potassium Permanganate from the People's Republic of China; Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review, 59 FR 26625 (May 23, 1994).

    Notification to Importers Regarding the Reimbursement of Duties

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

    Notification Regarding Administrative Protective Order

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

    We are issuing and publishing this administrative review and notice in accordance with sections 751(a)(l) and 777(i) of the Act.

    Dated: August 15, 2016 Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance. Appendix List of Topics Discussed in the Final Decision Memorandum Summary Background Scope of the Order Discussion of the Issues Comment I Surrogate Country Comment II Surrogate Value for Manganese Ore/Manganese Dioxide Comment III Surrogate Financial Ratios Comment IV Treatment of Value Added Tax Comment V Application of Adverse Facts Available to PAL Recommendation
    [FR Doc. 2016-20423 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XE727 Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Maintenance, Repair, and Decommissioning of a Liquefied Natural Gas Facility off Massachusetts AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice; proposed incidental harassment authorization; request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS has received an application from Neptune LNG LLC (Neptune) for an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to maintenance, repair, and decommissioning activities at its liquefied natural gas (LNG) deepwater port (Port) off the coast of Massachusetts. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting comments on its proposal to issue an IHA to Neptune to take, by Level B harassment only, fourteen species of marine mammals during the specified activity.

    DATES:

    Comments and information must be received no later than September 26, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments on the application should be addressed to Jolie Harrison, Chief, Permits, Conservation and Education Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service, 1315 East West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910. The mailbox address for providing email comments is [email protected] NMFS is not responsible for email comments sent to addresses other than the one provided here. Comments sent via email, including all attachments, must not exceed a 25 megabyte file size.

    Instructions: All comments received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted to http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental.htm without change. All personally identifiable information (for example, name, address, etc.) voluntarily submitted by the commenter may be publicly accessible. Do not submit confidential business information or otherwise sensitive or protected information.

    An electronic copy of the application may be obtained by writing to the address specified above, telephoning the contact listed below (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT), or visiting the internet at: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental.htm. The following associated documents are also available at the same Internet address: Biological Opinion on the Effects of the Maritime Administration's (MARAD) issuance of a license to Neptune to own and operate a LNG deepwater port off the coast of Massachusetts on Threatened and Endangered Species (NMFS, 2010) and a list of references used in this document. The MARAD and U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is available for viewing at http://www.regulations.gov by entering the search words “Neptune LNG.”

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Jaclyn Daly, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, (301) 427-8401.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    Sections 101(a)(5)(A) and (D) of the MMPA (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.) direct the Secretary of Commerce to allow, upon request, the incidental, but not intentional, taking of small numbers of marine mammals by U.S. citizens who engage in a specified activity (other than commercial fishing) within a specified geographical region if certain findings are made and either regulations are issued or, if the taking is limited to harassment, a notice of a proposed authorization is provided to the public for review.

    Authorization for incidental takings shall be granted if NMFS finds that the taking will have a negligible impact on the species or stock(s), will not have an unmitigable adverse impact on the availability of the species or stock(s) for subsistence uses (where relevant), and if the permissible methods of taking and requirements pertaining to the mitigation, monitoring and reporting of such takings are set forth. NMFS has defined “negligible impact” in 50 CFR 216.103 as “an impact resulting from the specified activity that cannot be reasonably expected to, and is not reasonably likely to, adversely affect the species or stock through effects on annual rates of recruitment or survival.”

    Section 101(a)(5)(D) of the MMPA established an expedited process by which citizens of the United States can apply for an authorization to incidentally take small numbers of marine mammals by harassment. Section 101(a)(5)(D) establishes a 45-day time limit for NMFS' review of an application followed by a 30-day public notice and comment period on any proposed authorizations for the incidental harassment of marine mammals. Within 45 days of the close of the comment period, NMFS must either issue or deny the authorization.

    Except with respect to certain activities not pertinent here, the MMPA defines “harassment” as:

    any act of pursuit, torment, or annoyance which (i) has the potential to injure a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild (“Level A harassment”); or (ii) has the potential to disturb a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild by causing disruption of behavioral patterns, including, but not limited to, migration, breathing, nursing, breeding, feeding, or sheltering (“Level B harassment”). Summary of Request

    NMFS received an application on May 28, 2016, from Neptune for the taking, by harassment, of marine mammals incidental to maintenance, repair, and decommissioning activities, at its Port facility in Massachusetts Bay off the coast of Massachusetts. NMFS reviewed Neptune's application and requested clarification on some portions. After addressing comments from NMFS, Neptune modified its application and submitted a revised application on August 11, 2016. The August 11, 2016, application is the one available for public comment (see ADDRESSES) and considered by NMFS for this proposed IHA.

    NMFS has issued several incidental harassment authorizations for the take, by Level B harassment only, of marine mammals to Neptune. NMFS issued a one-year IHA in June 2008, for the construction of the DWP (73 FR 33400 [June 12, 2008), which expired on June 30, 2009. NMFS issued a second one-year IHA to Neptune for the completion of construction and beginning of Port operations on June 26, 2009 (74 FR 31926 [July 6, 2009]). NMFS issued a third 1-year IHA (75 FR 41440 [July 16, 2010]) for ongoing operations followed by a five-year rulemaking and Letter of Authorization (LOA) 76 FR 34157 [June 13, 2011]), which expired on July 10, 2016. Although Neptune intended to operate the port for over 25 years, changes in the natural gas market have resulted in the company halting production operations. During the period of this proposed IHA, Neptune intends to decommission the port in its entirety and conduct any unscheduled maintenance activities, if needed, prior to decommissioning.

    The Neptune Port is located approximately 22 miles (mi) (35 kilometers (km)) northeast of Boston, Massachusetts, in Federal waters approximately 260 feet (ft) (79 meters (m)) in depth. Take of marine mammals may occur from dynamic positioning (DP) vessel thruster use, including dive support vessels (DSVs) and potentially one heavy lift vessel (HLV), while maneuvering (e.g., docking, undocking, and occasional weathervaning (turning of a vessel at anchor from one direction to another under the influence of wind or currents) during port maintenance, repair, and decommissioning. Neptune has requested authorization to take the following 14 marine mammal species by Level B harassment: North Atlantic right whale (Eubalaena glacialis), fin whale (Balaenoptera physalus), humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae), minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata), sei whale (Balaenoptera boreali), Atlantic white-sided dolphin (Lagenorhynchus acutus), long-finned pilot whale (Globicephala melas), harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena), bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), short beaked common dolphin (Delphinus delphis), Risso's dolphin (Grampus griseus), killer whale (Orcinus orcus), harbor seal (Phoca vitulina), and grey seal (Halichoerus grypus). NMFS has preliminarily determined to authorize take, by Level B harassment only, of these species incidental to DP vessel thruster use during maintenance, repair, and decommissioning activities.

    Description of the Specified Activity Overview

    The Neptune Port began operations in 2009-2010, with the intention to import LNG into the New England region. The Port consists of a submerged buoy system to dock specifically designed LNG carriers approximately 22 mi (35 km) northeast of Boston, Massachusetts, in Federal waters approximately 125-250 ft (38-76 m) in depth. It is located west (i.e., inshore) of and adjacent to the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary (NMS). The Port consists of two mooring and unloading buoys separated by approximately 2.1 mi (3.4 km) (also known as the north and south buoy) and a pipeline that receives natural gas from “shuttle and regasification vessels” (SRVs), through a flexible riser that connects to a 24-inch (in) subsea flowline and ultimately into a 24-in gas transmission line. This gas transmission line connects to the existing 30-in Algonquin HubLine gas pipeline. A hot tap valve (herein after “hot tap”) unit used to control gas flow from the Algonquin pipeline to Neptune's gas transmission line is located inshore of the buoys in water approximately 122 ft (37 m). The locations of the Neptune port facilities, including the north buoy, south buoy and hot tap are shown in Figure 2-1 in Neptune's application (see ADDRESSES). All decommissioning and unscheduled maintenance and repair work will take place at the north and south buoys and at the hot tap in succession with limited transit between locations.

    Dates and Duration

    Decommissioning will occur for up to 70 days between May 1 and November 30, 2017. Unscheduled maintenance and repair work may occur prior to decommissioning, if needed, and last up to 14 days.

    Detailed Description of Activities

    Maintenance, repair, and decommissioning of the Port will require docking, undocking, and occasional weathervaning of DP vessels at the north buoy, south buoy, and hot tap via the use of bow and stern thrusters. Operation and specifications of DP vessels is provided in the “Vessel Activity” section below. For purposes of this IHA, the activity that may result in the take, by Level B harassment, of marine mammals is limited to use of these thrusters. A summary of the type of work performed during maintenance, repair, and decommissioning requiring vessel operations is also summarized below; however, NMFS does not anticipate incidental take of marine mammals as a result of the actual underwater work (see Neptune's application for a more detailed description of this work).

    Maintenance and Repair

    At this time, Neptune does not anticipate maintenance or repair of Port equipment will be necessary (the Port is not currently operating); however, they are requesting authorization of take incidental to thruster use during maintenance and repair should an unanticipated issue arise with port equipment prior to decommissioning. Unscheduled maintenance and repair activities requiring limited excavation to access the pipeline, or cathodic protection maintenance, are authorized by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). Unplanned maintenance and repair would be relatively minor and of short duration. Example unscheduled maintenance activities may include repair of flange or valve leaks, replacing faulty pressure transducers, or unscheduled maintenance on valves. Neptune may use a remotely operated underwater vehicle (ROV) to perform these tasks. These minor unscheduled maintenance and repair activities will be completed within a few days to two weeks, depending on the nature of the problem.

    Should any unplanned maintenance be required, a DSV would be the primary vessel used to complete the activities in the timeliest manner. The category of DSV and corresponding support vessels would be dictated by the type of work required, the water depth at the work location, vessel availability, and expected duration of the maintenance or repair.

    Decommissioning

    Neptune intends to decommission the Port in its entirety. Decommissioning involves seven major steps: Isolation and closure of hot tap and removal of tie-in spool; pipeline decommissioning and abandonment; disconnection and removal of risers and umbilicals, and submerged turret loading (STL) buoys; covering suction piles used as anchoring/mooring with trawl protector; removal of mooring lines (anchor chain and wire rope); removal of pipeline end maninfolds (PLEMs) and hot tap; and removal of two seafloor position transponders (one at each buoy). All recovery of decommissioned equipment would be done using a crane aboard the DSV and parts staged on the anchored barge to be taken to shore via a tug. Neptune's application provides more detail regarding these activities. NMFS has preliminarily determined only the use of thrusters from vessels necessary to perform the work has the potential to result in the take of marine mammals, by Level B harassment.

    Vessel Activity

    The planned scenario for the duration of all proposed activities would include the mobilization of a DSV, tug, an anchored barge, and intermittent use of a crew vessel with the DSV being a DP vessel. Two types of DP vessels may be used to support Port maintenance, repair, and decommissioning: A DSV and a HLV. Only one DSV or HLV vessel is expected to be working at any one time. However, in the unlikely event that two DSVs (or one DSV and one HLV) are necessary at the same time, they would remain at least 1000 m from each another. The specifications of the HLV are similar to that of the DSV and would be performing the same duties as a DSV. The DP vessel would likely be 120 m in length and equipped with two 1,500 kW forward thrusters and one 1,500 kilowatt (kW) aft thruster (total 4,500 kW). Neptune would operate the thrusters for up 24 hours per day at 50 percent load or less for a maximum 10 weeks. Proxy DSV and HLV vessels used in Neptune's acoustic modeling, as described in Table 1-4 of Neptune's application, were 107 m and 144 m, respectively, with corresponding total thruster power of 3,752 kW and 4,600 kW. For comparison, previous incidental take authorizations included take of marine mammals based on sound source verification measurements from thrusters on a shuttle regasification vessel (SVRs) planned for use during Port operation. The SVR was 280 m in length and equipped with two 2,000-kW bow thrusters and two 1,200-kW stern thrusters (total 6,400 kW). During the measurements, the SRV operated thrusters at 100 percent load as this was the predicted scenario during Port operation.

    In general, the DSV will transit to either the STL buoy or PLEM and complete all work at the site prior to moving to the next location. The DSV would operate in dynamic positioning mode and would support all diving and ROV operations required to perform the work. The support tug will anchor the barge and would occasionally be required for barge handling activities when equipment transport and/or staging are required. The crew/supply vessel would be used intermittently for personnel and supply transfers. A survey vessel would be used for a brief period of time (no more than five days) at the end of the project to perform an “as-left” survey.

    Description of Marine Mammals in the Area of the Specified Activity

    Massachusetts Bay (as well as the entire Atlantic Ocean) hosts a diverse assemblage of marine mammals. Table 3-1 in Neptune's application outlines 20 marine mammal species with distributions or sighting records within the general activity region. However, six are very rare or unlikely to inhabit the geographic range which many ensonified by the proposed activity area and therefore are not expected to be affected at any level by the proposed activities. These species include: Blue whale (Balaenoptera musculus), striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba), Atlantic white-sided dolphin (Lagenorhynchus acutus), sperm whale (Physeter macrocaphalus), hooded seal (Cystophora cristata), and harp seal (Phoca groenlandica). Blue and sperm whales are not commonly found in Massachusetts Bay with blue whale most commonly seen off the Canada coast. The sperm whale is generally a deepwater animal, and its distribution off the Northeastern United States is concentrated around the 13,280 ft (4,048 m) depth contour, with sightings extending offshore beyond the 6,560 ft (2,000 m) depth contour. Sperm whales can also be seen in shallow water south of Cape Cod from May to November. Harp and hooded seals are seasonal visitors from much further north, seen mostly in the winter and early spring. Prior to 1990, harp and hooded seals were sighted only very occasionally in the Gulf of Maine, but recent sightings suggest increasing numbers of these species now visit these waters. Juveniles of a third seal species, the ringed seal, are seen on occasion as far south as Cape Cod in the winter, but this species is considered to be quite rare in these waters. Due to the rarity of these species in the project area, NMFS is not proposing to authorize take, by harassment, of these species or stocks and; therefore, they are not discussed further in this proposed IHA notice. The bottlenose dolphin and killer whale are also unlikely to occur within the proposed activity area. However, given their wide distribution and transient behavior, they remain in the group of species potentially affected by proposed activities.

    Therefore, NMFS proposes to issue an IHA for Level B harassment for the following 14 species: North Atlantic right whale; fin whale; humpback whale; minke whale; sei whale; harbor porpoise; bottlenose dolphin; killer whale; long-finned pilot whale; Atlantic white-sided dolphin; short beaked common dolphin; Risso's dolphin; grey seal; and harbor seal (Table 1).

    Table 1—Species Likely To Occur Within the Project Area [E = endangered, D = depleted, NL = not listed, ND = not depleted, unk = unknown] Common name Scientific name Stock Status Estimated population
  • (Waring et al., 2015)
  • Occurrence
    North Atlantic right whale Eubalaena glacialis Western Atlantic E, D 476 occasional. Fin whale Balaenoptera physalus Western North Atlantic E,D 1,618 occasional. Humpback whale Megaptera novaeangliae Gulf of Maine E,D 823 occasional. Minke whale Balaenoptera acutorostrata Canadian East Coast NL, ND 20,741 occasional. Sei whale Balaenoptera borealis Novia Scotia E,D 357 occasional. Atlantic white-sided dolphin Lagenorhynchus acutus Western North Atlantic NL, ND 48,819 occasional. Long-finned pilot whale Globicephala melas Western North Atlantic NL, ND 26,535 occasional. Harbor porpoise Phocoena phocoena Gulf of Maine/Bay of Fundy NL, ND 79,883 not common. Bottlenose dolphin Tursiops truncatus Western North Offshore Atlantic NL, ND 77,532 not common. Short beaked common dolphin Delphinus delphis Western North Atlantic NL, ND 173,486 occasional. Risso's dolphin Grampus griseus Western North Atlantic NL, ND 18,250 not common. Killer whale Orcinus orca Western North Atlantic NL, ND unk not common. Harbor seal Phoca vitulina Western North Atlantic NL, ND 75,834 occasional. Grey seal Halichoerus grypus Western North Atlantic NL, ND unk occasional.

    The North Atlantic right, fin, humpback, and sei, whales are listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and as depleted under the MMPA. Certain stocks or populations of killer whales are listed as endangered under the ESA or depleted under the MMPA; however, none of those stocks or populations occurs in the project area. All other species are not listed under the ESA nor considered depleted under the MMPA. A brief description of distribution and abundance of species potentially taken by the specified activity is provided below. Information within these summaries is taken from NMFS stock assessment reports, as reviewed in Waring et al. (2015).

    North Atlantic Right Whale

    North Atlantic right whales are distributed widely across the southern Gulf of Maine in spring with highest abundance located over the deeper waters (100 to 160 m, or 328 to 525 ft, isobaths) on the northern edge of the Great South Channel (GSC) and deep waters (100-300 m, 328-984 ft) parallel to the 100 m (328 ft) isobath of northern Georges Bank and Georges Basin. High abundance was also found in the shallowest waters (<30 m, <98 ft) of Cape Cod Bay (CCB), over Platts Bank and around Cashes Ledge. Lower relative abundance is estimated over deep-water basins including Wilkinson Basin, Rodgers Basin, and Franklin Basin. In the summer months, right whales move almost entirely away from the coast to deep waters over basins in the central Gulf of Maine (Wilkinson Basin, Cashes Basin between the 160 and 200 m (525 and 656 ft) isobaths and north of Georges Bank (Rogers, Crowell, and Georges Basins). Highest abundance is found north of the 100 m (328 ft) isobath at the GSC and over the deep slope waters and basins along the northern edge of Georges Bank. The waters between Fippennies Ledge and Cashes Ledge are also estimated as high-use areas. In the fall months, right whales are sighted infrequently in the Gulf of Maine, with highest densities over Jeffreys Ledge and over deeper waters near Cashes Ledge and Wilkinson Basin. In winter, CCB, Scantum Basin, Jeffreys Ledge, and Cashes Ledge are the main high-use areas. The Stellwagen Bank NMS, located just east of the Port, does not appear to support a high abundance of right whales; sightings are reported for all four seasons, albeit at low relative abundance. The highest sighting rate within Stellwagen Bank NMS occurs along the southern edge of the Bank.

    Right whales frequent Massachusetts and CCB from December through July (NMFS, 2010). Neptune acoustically detected right whales in greatest abundance near the Port in March and April since beginning their long-term acoustic monitoring plan developed during issuance of previous incidental take authorizations. As such, NMFS set forth conditions in previous incidental take authorizations and its 2010 Biological Opinion to Neptune to conduct all work from May 1 to November 30, annually, to the greatest extent practicable, to avoid times when right whales are most abundant.

    As reviewed in Waring et al. (2015), a review of the North Atlantic right whale photo-ID recapture database as it existed on October 20, 2014, indicated that 476 individually-recognized whales in the catalog were known to be alive during 2011. This number represents a minimum population size. The minimum number alive population index calculated from the individual sightings database for the years 1990-2011 suggests a positive and slowly accelerating trend in population size. These data reveal a significant increase in the number of catalogued whales with a geometric mean growth rate for the period of 2.8 percent.

    For the period 2009 through 2013, the minimum rate of annual human-caused mortality and serious injury to right whales averaged 4.3 per year. This is derived from two components: (1) Incidental fishery entanglement records at 3.4 per year, and (2) ship strike records at 0.9 per year. The stock assessment report for this stock (Waring et al., 2015) sets the potential biological removal (PBR) level at 0.9; therefore, any mortality or serious injury for this stock can be considered significant. The Western North Atlantic stock is considered strategic by NOAA because the average annual human-related mortality and serious injury exceeds PBR, and because the North Atlantic right whale is an endangered species.

    Humpback Whale

    The highest abundance for humpback whales is distributed primarily along a relatively narrow corridor following the 100 m (328 ft) isobath across the southern Gulf of Maine from the northwestern slope of Georges Bank, south to the GSC, and northward alongside Cape Cod to Stellwagen Bank and Jeffreys Ledge. The relative abundance of whales increases in the spring with the highest occurrence along the slope waters (between the 40 and 140 m (131 and 459 ft) isobaths) off Cape Cod and Davis Bank, Stellwagen Basin and Tillies Basin and between the 50 and 200 m (164 and 656 ft) isobaths along the inner slope of Georges Bank. High abundance was also estimated for the waters around Platts Bank. In the summer months, abundance increases markedly over the shallow waters (<50 m, or <164 ft) of Stellwagen Bank, the waters (100-200 m, 328-656 ft) between Platts Bank and Jeffreys Ledge, the steep slopes (between the 30 and 160 m isobaths, 98 and 525 ft isobaths) of Phelps and Davis Bank north of the GSC towards Cape Cod, and between the 50 and 100 m (164 and 328 ft) isobath for almost the entire length of the steeply sloping northern edge of Georges Bank. This general distribution pattern persists in all seasons except winter when humpbacks remain at high abundance in only a few locations including Porpoise and Neddick Basins adjacent to Jeffreys Ledge, northern Stellwagen Bank and Tillies Basin, and the GSC. The minimum population estimate of Gulf of Maine, formerly western North Atlantic, humpback whales is 823 animals (Waring et al., 2015). Current data suggest that the Gulf of Maine humpback whale stock is steadily increasing in size, which is consistent with an estimated average trend of 3.1% in the North Atlantic population overall for the period 1979-1993.

    Fin Whale

    Spatial patterns of habitat utilization by fin whales are very similar to those of humpback whales. Spring and summer high-use areas follow the 100 m (328 ft) isobath along the northern edge of Georges Bank (between the 50 and 200 m, 164 and 656 ft, isobaths), and northward from the GSC (between the 50 and 160 m, 164 and 525 ft, isobaths). Waters around Cashes Ledge, Platts Bank, and Jeffreys Ledge are all high-use areas in the summer months. Stellwagen Bank is a high-use area for fin whales in all seasons, with highest abundance occurring over the southern Stellwagen Bank in the summer months. In fact, the southern portion of Stellwagen Bank NMS is used more frequently than the northern portion in all months except winter, when high abundance is recorded over the northern tip of Stellwagen Bank. In addition to Stellwagen Bank, high abundance in winter is estimated for Jeffreys Ledge and the adjacent Porpoise Basin (100 to 160 m, 328 to 525 ft isobaths), as well as Georges Basin and northern Georges Bank. The best abundance estimate available for the western North Atlantic fin whale stock is 1,618 and is based on 2011 NOAA shipboard surveys (Waring et al., 2015). The minimum population estimate for the western North Atlantic fin whale is 1,234. A trend analysis has not been conducted for this stock.

    Minke Whale

    Like other piscivorus baleen whales, highest abundance for minke whale is strongly associated with regions between the 50 and 100 m (164 and 328 ft) isobath, but with a slightly stronger preference for the shallower waters along the slopes of Davis Bank, Phelps Bank, GSC, and Georges Shoals on Georges Bank. Minke whales are sighted in Stellwagen Bank NMS in all seasons, with highest abundance estimated for the shallow waters (approximately 40 m, 131 ft) over southern Stellwagen Bank in the summer and fall months. Platts Bank, Cashes Ledge, Jeffreys Ledge, and the adjacent basins (Neddick, Porpoise, and Scantium) also support high relative abundance. Very low densities of minke whales remain throughout most of the southern Gulf of Maine in winter. The best estimate of abundance for the Canadian East Coast stock of minke whales, which occurs from the western half of the Davis Strait to the Gulf of Mexico, is 20,741 animals with a minimum estimate of 16,199 individuals (Waring et al., 2015). A trend analysis has not been conducted for this stock.

    Long-finned Pilot Whale

    The long-finned pilot whale is generally found along the edge of the continental shelf at a depth of 100-1,000 m (328-3,280 ft), choosing areas of high relief or submerged banks in cold or temperate shoreline waters. This species is split into two subspecies: The Northern and Southern subspecies. The Southern subspecies is circumpolar with northern limits of Brazil and South Africa. The Northern subspecies, which could be encountered during operation of the Port facility, ranges from North Carolina to Greenland. In the western North Atlantic, long-finned pilot whales are pelagic, occurring in especially high densities in winter and spring over the continental slope, then moving inshore and onto the shelf in summer and autumn following squid and mackerel populations. They frequently travel into the central and northern Georges Bank, GSC, and Gulf of Maine areas during the summer and early fall (May and October). Based on summer 2011 surveys covering waters from central Virginia to the lower Bay of Fundy, the best available estimate for long-finned pilot whales in the western North Atlantic is 5,636 with a minimum population estimate of 3,464 individuals (Waring et al., 2015). Currently, there are insufficient data to determine population trends for the long-finned pilot whale.

    Sei Whale

    The sei whale is the least likely of all the baleen whale species to occur near the Port. However, four sei whales were sighted by Neptune's protected species observers (PSOs) during the construction phase (ECOES 2010). The Nova Scotia stock of sei whales ranges from the continental shelf waters of the Northeastern United States and extends northeastward to south of Newfoundland. The southern portion of the species range during spring and summer includes the northern portions of the U.S. Atlantic Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ): The Gulf of Maine and Georges Bank. Spring is the period of greatest abundance in U.S. waters, with sightings concentrated along the eastern margin of Georges Bank and into the Northeast Channel area and along the southwestern edge of Georges Bank in the area of Hydrographer Canyon. The best estimate of abundance for the Nova Scotia stock is 357 with a minimum of 236 individuals. However, this estimate is considered low and limited given the known range of the sei whale (Waring et al., 2015). There are insufficient data to determine population trends for this species.

    Atlantic White-Sided Dolphin

    In spring, summer and fall, Atlantic white-sided dolphins are widespread throughout the southern Gulf of Maine, with the high-use areas widely located on either side of the 100 m (328 ft) isobath along the northern edge of Georges Bank, and north from the GSC to Stellwagen Bank, Jeffreys Ledge, Platts Bank, and Cashes Ledge. In spring, high-use areas exist in the GSC, northern Georges Bank, the steeply sloping edge of Davis Bank, and Cape Cod, southern Stellwagen Bank, and the waters between Jeffreys Ledge and Platts Bank. In summer, there is a shift and expansion of habitat toward the east and northeast. High-use areas occur along most of the northern edge of Georges Bank between the 50 and 200 m (164 and 656 ft) isobaths and northward from the GSC along the slopes of Davis Bank and Cape Cod. High sightings are also recorded over Truxton Swell, Wilkinson Basin, Cashes Ledge and the bathymetrically complex area northeast of Platts Bank. High sightings of white-sided dolphin are recorded within Stellwagen Bank NMS in all seasons, with highest density in summer and most widespread distributions in spring located mainly over the southern end of Stellwagen Bank. In winter, high sightings were recorded at the northern tip of Stellwagen Bank and Tillies Basin. The best available current abundance estimate for white-sided dolphins in the western North Atlantic stock is 48,819, resulting from a June-August 2011 survey with a minimum population of 30,403 individuals (Waring et al., 2015). A trend analysis has not been conducted for this species.

    Killer Whale, Common Dolphin, Bottlenose Dolphin, Risso's Dolphin, and Harbor Porpoise

    Although these five species are some of the most widely distributed small cetacean species in the world, they are not commonly seen in the vicinity of the project area in Massachusetts Bay. The total number of killer whales off the eastern U.S. coast is unknown, and present data are insufficient to calculate a minimum population estimate or to determine the population trends for this stock. The best estimate of abundance for the western North Atlantic stock of short-beaked common dolphin is 173,486 with a minimum of 112,531 individuals; a trend analysis has not been conducted for this species (Waring et al., 2015). There are several stocks of bottlenose dolphins found along the eastern U.S. coast from Maine to Florida. The stock that may occur in the area of the Port is the western North Atlantic offshore stock of bottlenose dolphins. The best population estimate of bottlenose dolphins for the stock is 77,532 individuals with a minimum of 56,053 individuals (Waring et al., 2015). There are insufficient data to determine the population trend for this stock. The best estimate of abundance for the western North Atlantic stock of Risso's dolphins is 18,250 with a minimum of 12,619 individuals generated from shipboard and aerial survey conducted between central Florida and the lower Bay of Fundy during June-August 2011 (Waring et al., 2015). There are insufficient data to determine the population trend for this stock. The best estimate of abundance for the Gulf of Maine/Bay of Fundy stock of harbor porpoise is 79,883 with a minimum of 61,415 individuals (Waring et al., 2015). A trend analysis has not been conducted for this species.

    Harbor and Gray Seals

    In the U.S. western North Atlantic, both harbor and gray seals are usually found from the coast of Maine south to southern New England and New York. Along the southern New England and New York coasts, harbor seals occur seasonally from September through late May. In recent years, their seasonal interval along the southern New England to New Jersey coasts has increased. In U.S. waters, harbor seal breeding and pupping normally occur in waters north of the New Hampshire/Maine border, although breeding has occurred as far south as Cape Cod in the early part of the 20th century. The best estimate of abundance for the western North Atlantic stock of harbor seals is 75,834 with a minimum of 66,884 individuals (Waring et al., 2015). A trend analysis has not been conducted for this stock (Waring et al., 2015).

    Although gray seals are often seen off the coast from New England to Labrador, within U.S. waters, only small numbers of gray seals have been observed pupping on several isolated islands along the Maine coast and in Nantucket-Vineyard Sound, Massachusetts. Present data are insufficient to calculate the minimum population estimate for U.S. waters; however, in March 2011, a maximum count of 15,756 was obtained in southeastern Massachusetts coastal waters (Waring et al., 2015). Gray seal abundance is likely increasing in the U.S. Atlantic EEZ, but the rate of increase is unknown (Waring et al., 2015).

    Potential Effects of the Specified Activity on Marine Mammals

    This section includes a summary and discussion of the ways that components (i.e., thruster use) of the specified activity, including mitigation, may impact marine mammals and their habitat. The “Estimated Take by Incidental Harassment” section later in this document will include a quantitative analysis of the number of individuals that are expected to be taken by this activity. The “Negligible Impact Analysis” section will include the analysis of how this specific activity will impact marine mammals and will consider the content of this section, the “Estimated Take by Incidental Harassment” section and the “Proposed Mitigation” section to draw conclusions regarding the likely impacts of this activity on the reproductive success or survivorship of individuals and from that on the affected marine mammal populations or stocks.

    When considering the influence of various kinds of sound on the marine environment, it is necessary to understand that different kinds of marine life are sensitive to different frequencies of sound. Based on available behavioral data, audiograms derived using auditory evoked potential techniques, anatomical modeling, and other data, NOAA's Acoustic Guidance for Assessing the Effects of Anthropogenic Sound on Marine Mammal Hearing (NMFS, 2016) designate “marine mammal hearing groups” for marine mammals and estimate the lower and upper frequencies of hearing. The groups and the associated frequencies are indicated below, but it is important to note animals are less sensitive to sounds at the outer edge of their functional range and most sensitive to sounds of frequencies within a smaller range somewhere in the middle of their functional hearing range:

    • Low frequency cetaceans (13 species of mysticetes): Generalized hearing range is 7 hertz (Hz) to 35 kilohertz (kHz);

    • Mid-frequency cetaceans (32 species of dolphins, six species of larger toothed whales, and 19 species of beaked and bottlenose whales): Generalized hearing range is 150 Hz to 160 kHz;

    • High frequency cetaceans (eight species of true porpoises, six species of river dolphins, Kogia, the franciscana, and four species of cephalorhynchids): Generalized hearing range is 275 Hz to 160 kHz; and

    • Phocid pinnipeds in water: Generalized hearing range is 50 Hz to 86 kHz; and

    • Otariid pinnipeds in water: Functional hearing is estimated to occur between approximately 60 Hz and 39 kHz.

    As mentioned previously in this document, 14 marine mammal species (12 cetacean and two pinniped species) are likely to occur near the Port. Of the 12 cetacean species likely to occur in Neptune's project area, five are classified as low frequency cetaceans (i.e., North Atlantic right, humpback, fin, minke, and sei whales), six are classified as mid-frequency cetaceans (i.e., killer and pilot whales and bottlenose, common, Risso's, and Atlantic white-sided dolphins), and one is classified as a high-frequency cetacean (i.e., harbor porpoise) (Southall et al., 2007). Both seal species potentially taken, by harassment, are phocids. The potential effects of the specified activity on marine mammals has been reviewed in the previous incidental take authorizations to Neptune (e.g., 75 FR 80260 [December 21, 2010]) as well as those proposed for the nearby Northeast Gateway LNG Port (e.g., 80 FR 72688 [November 20, 2015]).

    When analyzing the auditory effects of noise exposure, it is often helpful to broadly categorize noise as either impulse or non-impulsive. Impulsive sound is typically transient, brief (less than 1 second), broadband, and consists of high peak sound pressure with rapid rise time and rapid decay. Impulsive sounds can occur in repetition or as a single event. Non-impulsive sound is characterized as broadband, narrowband, or tonal, brief or prolonged, continuous or intermittent, and does not have high peak sound pressure with rapid rise times (NMFS, 2016). Further, continuous noise is defined as a sound whose sound pressure level remains above ambient sound during the observation period (ANSI, 2005). DP vessel thrusters produce a non-impulsive, continuous noise. Marine mammals may undergo behavioral modifications rising to the level of take when exposed to elevated sound levels produced by thrusters during maneuvering of the DSV or HLV while docking and undocking and occasional weathervaning during maintenance, repair, and decommissioning activities. The potential effects of sound from thruster use include, but are not limited to, one or more of the following: No effect; masking; behavioral disturbance; non-auditory physical effects; and, temporary hearing impairment (Richardson et al., 1995; Southall et al., 2007). For reasons discussed later in this document, it is unlikely that there would be any cases of temporary or permanent hearing impairment resulting from these activities. As outlined in previous NMFS documents, the effects of noise on marine mammals are highly variable and can be categorized as follows (based on Richardson et al., 1995):

    (1) The noise may be too weak to be heard at the location of the animal (i.e., lower than the prevailing ambient noise level, the hearing threshold of the animal at relevant frequencies, or both);

    (2) The noise may be audible but not strong enough to elicit any overt behavioral response;

    (3) The noise may elicit reactions of variable conspicuousness and variable relevance to the well being of the marine mammal; these can range from temporary alert responses to active avoidance reactions such as vacating an area at least until the noise event ceases but potentially for longer periods of time;

    (4) Upon repeated exposure, a marine mammal may exhibit diminishing responsiveness (habituation), or disturbance effects may persist; the latter is most likely with sounds that are highly variable in characteristics, infrequent, and unpredictable in occurrence, and associated with situations that a marine mammal perceives as a threat;

    (5) Any anthropogenic noise that is strong enough to be heard has the potential to reduce (mask) the ability of a marine mammal to hear natural sounds at similar frequencies, including calls from conspecifics, and underwater environmental sounds such as surf noise;

    (6) If mammals remain in an area because it is important for feeding, breeding, or some other biologically important purpose even though there is chronic exposure to noise, it is possible that there could be noise-induced physiological stress; this might in turn have negative effects on the well-being or reproduction of the animals involved; and

    (7) Very strong sounds have the potential to cause a temporary or permanent reduction in hearing sensitivity. In terrestrial mammals, and presumably marine mammals, received sound levels must far exceed the animal's hearing threshold for there to be any temporary threshold shift (TTS) in its hearing ability. For transient sounds, the sound level necessary to cause TTS is inversely related to the duration of the sound. Received sound levels must be even higher for there to be risk of permanent hearing impairment. In addition, intense acoustic or explosive events may cause trauma to tissues associated with organs vital for hearing, sound production, respiration and other functions. This trauma may include minor to severe hemorrhage.

    Masking

    Underwater noise, whether of natural or anthropogenic origin, has the ability to interfere with the way in which marine mammals receive acoustic signals used for communication, social interaction, foraging, navigation, etc. (Erbe et al., 2016). When communication signals occur near the noise band of the source (in this case, a low frequency source like thrusters), communication space of marine mammals can be reduced (e.g., Clark et al., 2009) and those animals may exhibit increased stress levels (e.g., Foote et al., 2004; Holt et al., 2009). Background ambient noise often interferes with or masks the ability of an animal to detect a sound signal even when that signal is above its absolute hearing threshold.

    Natural ambient noise includes contributions from wind, waves, precipitation, other animals, and (at frequencies above 30 kHz) thermal noise resulting from molecular agitation (Richardson et al., 1995) making the sea usually noisy, even in the absence of manmade sounds. As such, marine mammals have evolved systems and behavior that function to reduce the impacts of masking. Structured signals, such as the echolocation click sequences of small toothed whales, may be readily detected even in the presence of strong background noise because their frequency content and temporal features usually differ strongly from those of the background noise (Au and Moore, 1988, 1990). There is evidence some toothed whales can increase amplitude and shift dominant frequencies of their echolocation and communication signals to compensate for increased ocean noise (Au et al., 1985; Holt et al., 2011; Scheifele et al., 2005). In addition, the sound localization abilities of marine mammals suggest that, if signal and noise come from different directions, masking would not be as severe as the usual types of masking studies might suggest (Richardson et al., 1995).

    The introduction of strong sounds into the sea at frequencies important to marine mammals increases the severity and frequency of occurrence of masking. Recent science suggests that low frequency ambient sound levels have increased by as much as 20 decibels (dB) (more than three times in terms of sound pressure level [SPL]) in the world's ocean from pre-industrial periods, and most of these increases are from distant shipping (Hildebrand, 2009).

    Unlike threshold shift, masking can potentially affect the species at population, community, or even ecosystem levels, as well as individual levels. Masking affects both senders and receivers of the signals and could have long-term chronic effects on marine mammal species and populations; however, quantitative data supporting this is lacking. Regardless, Neptune's use of DP thrusters would contribute elevated noise levels, thus increasing severity of masking by nearby animals.

    Disturbance

    Exposure of marine mammals to certain sounds could lead to behavioral disturbance (Richardson et al., 1995), such as: Changing durations of surfacing and dives, number of blows per surfacing, or moving direction and/or speed; reduced/increased vocal activities; changing/cessation of certain behavioral activities (such as socializing or feeding); visible startle response or aggressive behavior (such as tail/fluke slapping or jaw clapping); avoidance of areas where noise sources are located; and/or flight responses (e.g., pinnipeds flushing into water from haulouts or rookeries).

    The onset of behavioral disturbance from anthropogenic noise depends on both external factors (characteristics of noise sources and their paths) and the receiving animals (hearing, motivation, experience, demography) and is also difficult to predict (Southall et al., 2007). Similarly, the biological significance of many of these behavioral disturbances, especially short-term, mild reactions, are not well documented. The consequences of behavioral modification are expected to be biologically significant if the change affects growth, survival, and/or reproduction.

    Currently NMFS uses a received level of 160 dB re 1 micro Pascal (μPa) root mean square (rms) for impulse noises, which are characterized by rapid rise times (e.g., impact pile driving), as the onset of marine mammal behavioral harassment, and 120 dB re 1 μPa (rms) for non-impulse noise sources (e.g., DP vessel thrusters). No impulse noise is expected from activities under this IHA. For Neptune's maintenance, repair and decommissioning activities, only the 120 dB re 1 μPa (rms) threshold is considered because only non-impulse noise sources would be generated.

    Hearing Impairment and Other Physiological Effects

    Marine mammals exposed to high intensity sound repeatedly or for prolonged periods can experience hearing threshold shift (TS), which is the loss of hearing sensitivity at certain frequency ranges (Kastak et al., 1999; Schlundt et al., 2000; Finneran et al., 2002; 2005). TS can be permanent (PTS), in which case the loss of hearing sensitivity is unrecoverable, or temporary (TTS), in which case the animal's hearing threshold will recover over time (Southall et al., 2007). Since marine mammals depend on acoustic cues for vital biological functions, such as orientation, communication, finding prey, and avoiding predators, marine mammals that suffer from PTS or TTS could have reduced fitness, survival, and reproduction, either permanently or temporarily.

    TTS is the mildest form of hearing impairment that can occur during exposure to a strong sound (Kryter, 1985). While experiencing TTS, the hearing threshold rises and a sound must be stronger in order to be heard. At least in terrestrial mammals, TTS can last from minutes or hours to (in cases of strong TTS) days. For sound exposures at or somewhat above the TTS threshold, hearing sensitivity in both terrestrial and marine mammals recovers rapidly after exposure to the noise ends.

    Human non-impulsive noise exposure guidelines are based on exposures of equal energy (the same sound exposure level [SEL]) producing equal amounts of hearing impairment regardless of how the sound energy is distributed in time (NIOSH, 1998). Until recently, previous marine mammal TTS studies have also generally supported this equal energy relationship (Southall et al., 2007). Three newer studies, two by Mooney et al. (2009a,b) on a single bottlenose dolphin either exposed to playbacks of U.S. Navy mid-frequency active sonar or octave-band noise (4-8 kHz) and one by Kastak et al. (2009) on a single California sea lion exposed to airborne octave-band noise (centered at 2.5 kHz), concluded that for all noise exposure situations, the equal energy relationship may not be the best indicator to predict TTS onset levels.

    TTS was measured in a single, captive bottlenose dolphin after exposure to a continuous tone with maximum SPLs at frequencies ranging from 4 to 11 kHz that were gradually increased in intensity to 179 dB re 1 µPa and in duration to 55 minutes (Nachtigall et al., 2003). No threshold shifts were measured at SPLs of 165 or 171 dB re 1 µPa. However, at 179 dB re 1 µPa, TTSs greater than 10 dB were measured during different trials with exposures ranging from 47 to 54 minutes. Hearing sensitivity apparently recovered within 45 minutes after noise exposure.

    For baleen whales, there are no data on levels or properties of sound that are required to induce TTS. The frequencies to which baleen whales are most sensitive are lower than those to which odontocetes are most sensitive, and natural background noise levels at those low frequencies tend to be higher. Sounds that are produced in the frequency range at which an animal hears the best do not need to be as loud as sounds in less functional frequencies to be detected by the animal. As a result, auditory thresholds of baleen whales within their frequency band of best hearing are believed to be higher (less sensitive) than are those of odontocetes at their best frequencies (Clark and Ellison, 2004). Therefore, for a sound to be audible, baleen whales require sounds to be louder (i.e., higher dB levels) than odontocetes in the frequency ranges at which each group hears the best. Based on this information, it is suspected that received levels causing TTS onset may also be higher in baleen whales. Since current NMFS practice assumes the same thresholds for the onset of hearing impairment in both odontocetes and mysticetes, NMFS' onset of TTS threshold is likely conservative for mysticetes.

    In free-ranging pinnipeds, TTS thresholds associated with exposure to underwater sound have not been measured; however, systematic TTS studies on captive pinnipeds have been conducted (Kastak et al., 1999, 2005; Schusterman et al., 2000; Southall et al., 2007). Kastak et al. (1999) reported TTS of approximately 4-5 dB in three species of pinnipeds (harbor seal, Californian sea lion, and northern elephant seal) after underwater exposure for approximately 20 minutes to noise with frequencies ranging from 100-2,000 Hz at received levels 60-75 dB above hearing threshold. This approach allowed similar effective exposure conditions to each of the subjects but resulted in variable absolute exposure values depending on subject and test frequency. Recovery to near baseline levels was reported within 24 hours of noise exposure (Kastak et al., 1999). Kastak et al. (2005) followed up on their previous work using higher sensitivity levels and longer exposure times (up to 50 minutes) and corroborated their previous findings. The sound exposures necessary to cause slight threshold shifts were also determined for two California sea lions and a juvenile elephant seal exposed to underwater sound for similar duration. The sound level necessary to cause TTS in pinnipeds depends on exposure duration, as in other mammals; with longer exposure, the level necessary to elicit TTS is reduced (Schusterman et al., 2000; Kastak et al., 2005). For very short exposures (e.g., to a single sound pulse), the level necessary to cause TTS is very high (Finneran et al., 2002).

    Vessel Strikes

    Vessel strikes pose a substantial risk to large whales, with North Atlantic right whales being particularly susceptible due to its congregations and movements in and around shipping lanes, near-shore behaviors, and time spent at the surface (Nowacek et al., 2004). Ship strikes of cetaceans can cause major wounds, which may lead to the death of the animal. An animal at the surface could be struck directly by a vessel, a surfacing animal could hit the bottom of a vessel, or an animal just below the surface could be cut by a vessel's propeller. The severity of injuries typically depends on the size and speed of the vessel (Knowlton and Kraus, 2001; Laist et al., 2001; Vanderlaan and Taggart, 2007). The most vulnerable marine mammals are those that spend extended periods of time at the surface in order to restore oxygen levels within their tissues after deep dives (e.g., the sperm whale). In addition, some baleen whales, such as the North Atlantic right whale, seem generally unresponsive to vessel sound, making them more susceptible to vessel collisions (Nowacek et al., 2004). These species are primarily large, slow moving whales. Smaller marine mammals (e.g., bottlenose dolphin) move quickly through the water column and are often seen riding the bow wave of large ships. Marine mammal responses to vessels may include avoidance and changes in dive pattern (NRC, 2003).

    In an effort to reduce right whale strikes, NMFS issued a Final Rule to reduce the severity and likelihood of vessel strikes to North Atlantic right whales, which went into effect on December 9, 2008 (73 FR 60173 [October 10, 2008]). The U.S. Northeast Great South Channel Mandatory Speed Restriction Seasonal Management Area is active April 1 through July 31, annually. All Neptune vessels would abide by the speed, monitoring, and reporting restrictions contained within the Rule, including reducing vessel speed to 10 knots while in a seasonal management area and traffic scheme restrictions.

    Potential Effects on Marine Mammal Habitat

    The proposed action area is inhabited by North Atlantic right, fin, humpback, and minke whales during part of the seasons, and is adjacent to the Stellwagen Bank NMS. In January 2016, NMFS issued a final rule modifying North Atlantic right whale critical habitat. As a result of that modification, the Port is now located within right whale critical habitat.

    Loss or modification of marine mammal habitat could arise from maintenance, repair, and decommissioning activities by altering benthic habitat, degrading water quality, and introduction of noise. Short-term impacts on benthic communities will occur during the decommissioning and removal or abandonment of Neptune DWP components at the north and south buoys and hot tap. Proposed activities will temporarily disturb small localized areas around each installed component slated for removal. Activities will produce suspension of fine sediments and resettlement of suspended sediments is the area immediately adjacent to ongoing operations. Resettlement of suspended sediments will produce localized reductions in benthic growth, reproduction, and survival rates of indigenous fauna; if the sediment resettlement is significant, smothering of benthic flora and fauna may occur.

    Maintenance, repair, and decommissioning is also likely to cause disturbance of the seafloor and increase turbidity. Sediment transport modeling conducted by Neptune on construction procedures indicated that initial turbidity from installation of the pipeline could reach 100 milligrams per liter (mg/L), but will subside to 20 mg/L after 4 hours. Turbidity associated with the flowline and hot-tap will be considerably less and also will settle within hours of the work being completed. Marine mammals could be indirectly affected if benthic prey species were displaced or destroyed by repair activities; however, these impacts would be brief and rebound when decommissioning is complete. Therefore, NMFS has preliminarily determined any impacts from Neptune's maintenance, repair, and decommissioning activities to marine mammal habitat are not expected to cause significant or long-term consequences for individual marine mammals or populations.

    Proposed Mitigation

    In order to issue an incidental take authorization (ITA) under sections 101(a)(5)(A) and (D) of the MMPA, NMFS must, where applicable, set forth the permissible methods of taking pursuant to such activity, and other means of effecting the least practicable impact on such species or stock and its habitat, paying particular attention to rookeries, mating grounds, and areas of similar significance, and on the availability of such species or stock for taking for certain subsistence uses (where relevant).

    Neptune submitted a “Monitoring and Mitigation Plan for Neptune Deepwater LNG Port Maintenance, Repair, and Decommissioning (MMDMP)” as part of its MMPA application (Appendix A of the application; see ADDRESSES). The MMDMP will provide the framework for mitigation and monitoring during the proposed activities. These measures include the following components: (1) Visual and acoustic monitoring program; (2) safety/shutdown zones; (3) recording and reporting; and (4) vessel speed/area restrictions.

    The mitigation protocols have been designed to provide both protection to marine mammals from exposure to the highest noise levels and contributions to noise characterization and species for the region. The mitigation measures will reduce the impact to marine mammals by minimizing exposure to potentially disruptive noise levels. The mitigation measures will further reduce any potential ship strikes to large whales in the area. The measures, which include use of protected species observers on all DP vessels, mitigation zones, and vessel speed reductions, are described below. If Neptune has to take action (e.g., cease vessel movement, power down thrusters), the activity may resume after the marine mammal is positively reconfirmed outside the established zones or if the marine mammal has not been re-sighted in the established zones for 30 minutes.

    Mitigation Measures

    1. Any whale visually sighted or otherwise detected (e.g., on the Navigational Telex (NAVTEX), NOAA Weather Radio, NOAA Right Whale Sighting Advisory System (SAS)) within 1,000 m of a vessel shall result in a heightened alert status which will require all project vessels to operate at slow speeds of 4-knots or less and any non-critical departure plans to be delayed.

    2. If a right whale call is confirmed on the two closest passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) buoys or on any three PAM buoys, all vessels will go into heightened alert status requiring all project vessels to operate at slow speeds of 4 knots or less and any non-critical departure plans to be delayed.

    3. Any whale sighted within or approaching 500 m of a vessel shall result in that vessel using idle speed and/or ceasing all movement. If the vessel is operating DP thrusters, the thrusters will be shut down or reduced to minimal safe operating power. The speed and activity restrictions shall continue until either the observed whale has been confirmed outside of and on a path away from 500m from the vessel or 30 minutes have passed without another confirmed detection.

    4. Any non-whale marine mammal species detected within or approaching 100 m of a vessel shall result in that vessel using idle speed and/or ceasing all movement. If the vessel is operating DP thrusters, the thrusters will be shut down or reduced to minimal safe operating power. The speed and activity restrictions shall continue until either the observed marine mammal has been confirmed outside and on a path away from 100 m from the activity or 30 minutes have passed without another confirmed detection.

    5. All project vessels will remain at least 500 m away from any North Atlantic right whale and at least 100 m away from all other marine mammals. If a marine mammal approaches a stationary vessel, that vessel will sit idle or turn off engines until the marine mammal has left the designated zone or 30 minutes have passed without another confirmed detection.

    6. All vessels shall utilize the International Maritime Organization (IMO)-approved Boston Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS) on their approach to and departure from the Neptune DWP and/or the unscheduled maintenance/maintenance area at the earliest practicable point of transit in order to avoid the risk of whale strikes.

    7. Repair vessels, DSVs, and HLVs, will transit at 10 knots (18.5 km/hr) or less in the following seasons and areas, which either correspond to or are more restrictive than the times and areas in NMFS' final rule (73 FR 60173 [October 10, 2008]) to implement speed restrictions to reduce the likelihood and severity of ship strikes of right whales:

    • CCB Seasonal Management Area (SMA) from January 1 through May 15, which includes all waters in CCB, extending to all shorelines of the Bay, with a northern boundary of 42°12′ N. latitude;

    • Off Race Point SMA year round, which is bounded by straight lines connecting the following coordinates in the order stated: 42°30′ N. 69°45′ W.; thence to 42°30′ N. 70°30′ W.; thence to 42°12′ N. 70°30′ W.; thence to 42°12′ N. 70°12′ W.; thence to 42°04′56.5″ N. 70°12′ W.; thence along mean high water line and inshore limits of COLREGS 1 limit to a latitude of 41°40′ N.; thence due east to 41°41′ N. 69°45′ W.; thence back to starting point; and

    1 The International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea 1972 (COLREGS) are published by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and set out, among other things, the “rules of the road” or navigation rules to be followed by ships and other vessels at sea to prevent collisions between two or more vessels.

    • Great South Channel (GSC) SMA from April 1 through July 31, which is bounded by straight lines connecting the following coordinates in the order stated:

    42°30′ N. 69°45′ W.

    41°40′ N. 69°45′ W.

    41°00′ N. 69°05′ W.

    42°09′ N. 67°08′24″ W.

    42°30′ N. 67°27′ W.

    42°30′ N. 69°45′ W.

    8. All vessels transiting to and from the project area shall report their activities to the mandatory reporting Section of the USCG to remain apprised of North Atlantic right whale movements within the area. All vessels entering and exiting the Mandatory Ship Reporting Area (MSRA) shall report their activities to WHALESNORTH. Vessel operators shall contact the USCG by standard procedures promulgated through the Notice to Mariner system. Information regarding the geographical boundaries and reporting details can be found at: http://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/pr/shipstrike/msr.htm.

    9. Prior to leaving the dock to begin transit, the project vessel must contact one of the PSOs on watch to receive an update of sightings within the visual observation area. If the PSO has observed a North Atlantic right whale within 30 minutes of the transit start, the vessel will hold for 30 minutes and again get a clearance to leave from the PSOs on board. PSOs will assess whale activity and visual observation ability at the time of the transit request to clear the barge for release.

    10. No vessels will transit from shore to the project site during nighttime or when visibility is reduced below 1,000 m, unless an emergency situation requires the vessel to transit during those times. Should transit at night be required, the maximum speed will be 5 knots (9.3 km/hr).

    11. All vessels will consult NAVTEX, NOAA Weather Radio, the NOAA Right Whale SAS or other means to obtain current large whale sighting information.

    12. If member of the crew visually detects a marine mammal within the ZOI (3.45 km), they will alert the lead PSO on watch who shall then relay the sighting information to the other vessels to document take, determine if mitigation actions are necessary, as required by this IHA, and ensure action(s) can be taken to avoid physical contact with marine mammals.

    13. In response to any whale sightings or acoustic detections, and taking into account exceptional circumstances, all vessels shall actively communicate with the PSO(s) on watch and will take appropriate actions to minimize the risk of striking whales.

    14. Neptune must immediately suspend any repair, maintenance, or decommissioning activities if a dead or injured marine mammal is found in the vicinity of the project area, and the death or injury of the animal could be attributable to the LNG facility activities. Neptune must contact NMFS and the Greater Atlantic Regional Office (GARFO) Marine Mammal Stranding and Disentanglement Program. Activities will not resume until review and approval has been given by NMFS.

    15. Use of lights during repair or maintenance activities shall be limited to areas where work is actually occurring, and all other lights must be extinguished. Lights must be downshielded to illuminate the deck and shall not intentionally illuminate surrounding waters, so as not to attract whales or their prey to the area.

    16. Transit route, destination, sea conditions and any marine mammal sightings/mitigation actions during watch shall be recorded in the log book.

    17. The material barges and tugs used in repair and maintenance shall transit from the operations dock to the work sites during daylight hours when possible provided the safety of the vessels is not compromised. Should transit at night be required, the maximum speed of the tug shall be five knots.

    18. All repair vessels must maintain a speed of 10 knots or less during daylight hours. All vessels shall operate at five knots or less at all times within five km of the maintenance, repair, or decommissioning area.

    19. All decommissioning work will occur during the May 1 to November 30 seasonal window so that disturbance to North Atlantic right whales will be largely avoided.

    Mitigation Conclusions

    NMFS has carefully evaluated the applicant's proposed mitigation measures and considered a range of other measures in the context of ensuring that NMFS prescribes the means of effecting the least practicable impact on the affected marine mammal species and stocks and their habitat. Our evaluation of potential measures included consideration of the following factors in relation to one another:

    • The manner in which, and the degree to which, the successful implementation of the measure is expected to minimize adverse impacts to marine mammals;

    • The proven or likely efficacy of the specific measure to minimize adverse impacts as planned; and

    • The practicability of the measure for applicant implementation.

    Any mitigation measure(s) prescribed by NMFS should be able to accomplish, have a reasonable likelihood of accomplishing (based on current science), or contribute to the accomplishment of one or more of the general goals listed below:

    1. Avoidance or minimization of injury or death of marine mammals wherever possible (goals 2, 3, and 4 may contribute to this goal);

    2. A reduction in the numbers of marine mammals (total number or number at biologically important time or location) exposed to received levels of DP vessel thrusters, or other activities expected to result in the take of marine mammals (this goal may contribute to 1, above, or to reducing harassment takes only);

    3. A reduction in the number of times (total number or number at biologically important time or location) individuals would be exposed to received levels of DP vessel thrusters, or other activities expected to result in the take of marine mammals (this goal may contribute to 1, above, or to reducing harassment takes only);

    4. A reduction in the intensity of exposures (either total number or number at biologically important time or location) to received levels of DP vessel thrusters, or other activities expected to result in the take of marine mammals (this goal may contribute to a, above, or to reducing the severity of harassment takes only);

    5. Avoidance or minimization of adverse effects to marine mammal habitat, paying special attention to the food base, activities that block or limit passage to or from biologically important areas, permanent destruction of habitat, or temporary destruction/disturbance of habitat during a biologically important time; and

    6. For monitoring directly related to mitigation—an increase in the probability of detecting marine mammals, thus allowing for more effective implementation of the mitigation.

    Proposed Monitoring and Reporting

    In order to issue an ITA for an activity, section 101(a)(5)(D) of the MMPA states that NMFS must set forth, “requirements pertaining to the monitoring and reporting of such taking.” The MMPA implementing regulations at 50 CFR 216.104 (a)(13) indicate that requests for ITAs must include the suggested means of accomplishing the necessary monitoring and reporting that will result in increased knowledge of the species and of the level of taking or impacts on populations of marine mammals that are expected to be present in the proposed action area. Neptune submitted a marine mammal monitoring plan as part of the IHA application (see Appendix A of the application). The plan may be modified or supplemented based on comments or new information received from the public during the public comment period.

    Summary of Marine Mammal Monitoring Reports

    NMFS reviewed Neptune's marine mammal monitoring report submitted as a requirement of their LOA covering July 2011 to July 2016. During the five-year period, the Port was operational between April 2010, and July 12, 2011; however, no SRVs visited the Port. As such, no marine mammal monitoring occurred. Between July 6-17, 2011, Neptune performed repair activities at the north buoy. During the repair work, four PSOs kept 24-hour watch for marine mammals and sea turtles. There were 24 marine mammal sightings comprising four species: Minke whales (n = 9), fin whales (n = 2), humpback whales (n = 5), short-beaked common dolphins (n = 2), and harbor porpoise (n = 1). In addition, three sightings of an unidentified cetacean and one sighting of an unidentified seal occurred. In total, 171 individuals were sighted with the majority (n = 135) being common dolphins. Two fin whales traveling together and approximately 130 common dolphins entered the 100 yard mitigation zone while thrusters were in use. On both occasions, divers were in the water and changes to thruster activity or power would endanger those divers or property. NMFS notes that the 100 yard mitigation zone did not constitute a Level A take area (due to source power at 1 meter being equal or less than the 180 dB re 1 μPa (rms) Level A threshold criterion that was in place during the authorization period) but was enacted to decrease elevated noise exposure. Therefore, Neptune did not take a marine mammal in a manner not authorized by their LOA. After July 17, 2011, there were no port activities; therefore, no marine mammal monitoring was conducted.

    Monitoring measures prescribed by NMFS should accomplish one or more of the following general goals:

    1. An increase in the probability of detecting marine mammals, both within the mitigation zone (thus allowing for more effective implementation of the mitigation) and in general to generate more data to contribute to the analyses mentioned below;

    2. An increase in our understanding of how many marine mammals are likely to be exposed to levels of thruster noise we associate with specific adverse effects, such as behavioral harassment, TTS, or PTS;

    3. An increase in our understanding of how marine mammals respond to stimuli expected to result in take and how anticipated adverse effects on individuals (in different ways and to varying degrees) may impact the population, species, or stock (specifically through effects on annual rates of recruitment or survival) through any of the following methods:

    • Behavioral observations in the presence of stimuli compared to observations in the absence of stimuli (need to be able to accurately predict received level, distance from source, and other pertinent information);

    • Physiological measurements in the presence of stimuli compared to observations in the absence of stimuli (need to be able to accurately predict received level, distance from source, and other pertinent information);

    • Distribution and/or abundance comparisons in times or areas with concentrated stimuli versus times or areas without stimuli;

    4. An increased knowledge of the affected species; and

    5. An increase in our understanding of the effectiveness of certain mitigation and monitoring measures.

    The following describes Neptune's proposed monitoring plan components. The monitoring efforts would support the proposed mitigation actions described above.

    Visual Monitoring

    1. All vessel crew members will undergo environmental training. Crew members who will act as designated watch personnel during heightened awareness conditions (whale within 1,000 m) will receive specialized observer training.

    2. All vessel operation requirements, guidelines and mitigation requirements will be clearly posted on the bridge of all project vessels.

    3. Neptune or its contractor shall provide a half-day training course to designated crew members assigned to the transit barges and other support vessels. This course shall cover topics including, but not limited to, descriptions of the marine mammals found in the area, mitigation and monitoring requirements contained in this Authorization, sighting log requirements, and procedures for reporting injured or dead marine mammals. These designated crew members shall be required to keep watch on the bridge and immediately notify the navigator of any whale sightings. All watch crew shall sign into a bridge log book upon start and end of watch. Transit route, destination, sea conditions, and any protected species sightings/mitigation actions during watch shall be recorded in the log book.

    4. Each DP vessel will employ three professional PSOs. Two PSOs will conduct continual visual watches on a shift basis during all daylight hours. The third PSO will stand night watch. Daytime PSOs will monitor the acoustic alert program when not on active visual watch. During the night, one PSO will monitor the acoustic alert program and will scan the area around the vessel using a thermal imaging or similar enhancement device for 15 minutes each hour.

    5. All professional PSOs will be approved by NMFS prior to the start of the project, will have at least one full year of marine mammal observation experience in the U.S. Atlantic, Pacific or Gulf of Mexico, and will have experience in acoustic monitoring and baleen whale detection.

    6. Each non-DP vessel will designate one trained crew member to stand a dedicated watch during all vessel movement and during times of heightened awareness. All designated crew watch personnel will undergo a full day of project-specific mitigation and monitoring training alongside the professional PSOs.

    7. PSOs will be responsible for advising vessel crew members on the required operating procedures and mitigation measures that are defined in the IHA. PSOs will be responsible for providing the required observation and detection data during the decommissioning activities.

    Acoustic Monitoring

    As a requirement of previous incidental take authorizations issued to Neptune, a passive acoustic monitoring array was installed around the project area and Boston Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS) to supplement visual monitoring and provide additional information regarding use of the area by marine mammals. This network consists of 19 autonomous recording units (ARUs) and near-real-time acoustic buoys. Neptune shall maintain a passive acoustic monitoring array consisting of four near real-time ARUs strategically placed around the north and south buoys for the life of the IHA to monitor for whale calls and record and analyze background and project-related noise levels. The location of the buoys is strategic to cover part of the Boston TSS, and the Neptune project area. Because no vessels will be coming from offshore, the remaining offshore buoys have been removed.

    The PAM buoys continuously record and analyze underwater sounds, including calling whales, throughout the entirety of the deployment period. The buoys can be operated in real time when bandwidth allows periodic transfer of data, or buoys can operate using auto-detection capabilities. When the onboard software detects a whale call, the buoy sends the spectral data for the detected signal via radio link to a computer display or handheld device that is monitored by the PSO on duty. If a detection alert is received, the PSO will review the data and confirm that the signal is a whale call. Upon verification, the PSO will monitor the other buoys for call detections. If the PSO verifies detections from the next closest buoy or two other buoys, then vessels will go into “heightened awareness” mode. Mitigation measures for acoustic detection of whales will be the same as those for visual detection described in the “Proposed Mitigation” section above. Additionally, upon acoustic confirmation of a North Atlantic right whale within 1000 m of the project site, all vessel captains will be immediately notified, crew PSOs will stand watch, vessel speeds will be reduced, transits will be delayed unless crew safety is compromised, and the area will be visually and acoustically monitored until the PSO determines that normal operating procedures can be resumed. Acoustic monitoring will be conducted at night to substitute visual monitoring not allowed for by thermal imaging or similar enhancement device.

    Reporting Measures

    Since the Port is within the MSRA, all vessels transiting to and from Neptune shall report their activities to the mandatory reporting section of the USCG to remain apprised of North Atlantic right whale movements within the area. All vessels entering and exiting the MSRA shall report their activities to USCG's northeast whale reporting system (WHALESNORTH). Vessel operators shall contact the USCG by standard procedures promulgated through the Notice to Mariner system.

    During all phases of project construction, sightings of any injured or dead marine mammals will be reported immediately to the USCG and NMFS, regardless of whether the injury or death is caused by project activities. Sightings of injured or dead marine mammals not associated with project activities can be reported to the USCG on VHF Channel 16 or to NMFS GARFO Marine Mammal Stranding and Disentanglement Program. In addition, if the injury or death was caused by a project vessel (e.g., DSV, HLV, tug, support vessel, etc.), the USCG must be notified immediately, and a full incident report must be provided to NMFS, Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office (GARFO). The report must include the following information: (1) The time, date, and location (latitude/longitude) of the incident; (2) the name and type of vessel involved; (3) the vessel's speed during the incident; (4) a description of the incident; (5) water depth; (6) environmental conditions (e.g., wind speed and direction, sea state, cloud cover, and visibility); (7) the species identification or description of the animal; (8) the fate of the animal; and (9) photographs or video footage of the animal (if equipment is available).

    Neptune must submit an annual report on marine mammal monitoring and mitigation actions taken or not taken to the NMFS Office of Protected Resources and GARFO within 90 days after the expiration of the IHA. The annual report should include data collected for each distinct marine mammal species observed in the project area in the Massachusetts Bay during the period of LNG facility construction and operations. Description of marine mammal behavior, numbers of individuals observed, frequency of observation, and any behavioral changes and the context of the changes relative to construction and operation activities shall also be included in the annual report. Additional information that will be recorded during construction and contained in the reports include: date and time of marine mammal detections (visually or acoustically), weather conditions, species identification, approximate distance from the source, activity of the vessel or at the construction site when a marine mammal is sighted, and whether thrusters were in use and, if so, how many at the time of the sighting and energy level.

    In the event that Neptune discovers an injured or dead marine mammal, and the lead PSO determines that the injury or death is not associated with or related to the activities authorized (if the IHA is issued) (e.g., previously wounded animal, carcass with moderate to advanced decomposition, or scavenger damage), Neptune shall report the incident to the Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, and the NMFS Northeast Marine Mammal Stranding Coordinators within 24 hours of the discovery. Neptune shall provide photographs or video footage (if available) or other documentation of the stranded animal sighting to NMFS and the GARFO Marine Mammal Stranding and Disentanglement Program. Neptune can continue its operations under such a case.

    General Conclusions Drawn From Previous Monitoring Reports

    Neptune has submitted numerous reports, including weekly reports during port construction, to NMFS as required by previous IHAs and the 2011-2016 LOA. While it is difficult to draw biological conclusions from these reports, NMFS can make some general conclusions. Data gathered by PSOs is generally useful to indicate the presence or absence of marine mammals (often to a species level) within the safety zones (and sometimes without) and to document the implementation of mitigation measures. Though it is by no means conclusory, it is worth noting that no instances of obvious behavioral disturbance as a result of Neptune's activities were documented by PSOs.

    Estimated Take by Incidental Harassment

    Except with respect to certain activities not pertinent here, the MMPA defines “harassment” as: any act of pursuit, torment, or annoyance which (i) has the potential to injure a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild (Level A harassment); or (ii) has the potential to disturb a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild by causing disruption of behavioral patterns, including, but not limited to, migration, breathing, nursing, breeding, feeding, or sheltering (Level B harassment). Only take by Level B harassment is anticipated as a result of Neptune's use of DP vessel thrusters during maintenance, repair, and decommissioning activities. Additionally, vessel strikes are not anticipated because of the monitoring and mitigation measures described earlier in this document.

    Decommissioning and Maintenance Sound

    Acoustic modeling and in situ measurements using a version of the Range Dependent Acoustic Model (RAM) were conducted for issuance of Neptune's previous IHAs and LOA. The noise fields utilized to assess construction (pipelaying) scenarios used a surrogate, multi-vessel activity scenario which included the Castoro II lay barge, two tugs, one DP survey vessel working on the flowline between the North and South buoys, and SRVs to access the DWP (Laurinolli et al., 2005). DP vessels similar to the DSV or HLV used for maintenance and decommissiong were not included in this model. Because the SRVs used for construction and operation are larger and employ greater horsepower than the vessels to be used during maintenance, repair and decommissioning, thruster noise from DP vessels used under this IHA is less than that generated from SRVs. Modeling results showed broadband source level for an SRV is 180 dB re 1 μPa (rms) while modeled broadband source level for a proxy DSV and HLV is 177.9 dB re 1 μPa (rms). Neptune used this 177.9 dB re 1 μPa (rms) source level to determine distances to the 120 dB re 1 μPa (rms) isopleth and calculate associated ZOI.

    Neptune calculated the ensonified area in which a marine mammal anywhere in the water column could potentially be exposed to a 120 dB re 1 μPa (rms) sound pressure level. Thruster use would occur at three locations: The north buoy, south buoy and hot tap. The north and south buoys are located in areas with similar characteristics (e.g., water depth, substrate type) which should result in similar transmission loss rates while the hot tap is located in shallower waters. Therefore, Neptune modeled transmission loss at the south buoy and hot tap which resulted in a 3.45 km and 3.12 km distance to the 120 dB re 1 μPa (rms) isopleth, respectively. Calculating for area, this equals a ZOI of 37.4 km2 and 31 km2 at the south buoy and hot tap, respectively. Because the number of days working at the hot tap is unknown, Neptune conservatively calculated the amount of take of marine mammals based on transmission loss rates at the south buoy (ZOI = 37.4 km2) for the full 70 days of decommissioning work and allowed for two weeks of unscheduled maintenance and repair.

    For continuous sounds, such as those produced by Neptune's specified activity (i.e., thrusters), NMFS uses a received level of 120 dB re 1 μPa (rms) to indicate the onset of potential for Level B harassment. Neptune's take estimates were derived by applying the modeled zone of influence (ZOI; e.g., the area ensonified by the 120 dB re 1 μPa (rms) contour) at the south buoy to the highest seasonal use (density) of the area by marine mammals and estimated duration of maintenance, repair, and decommissioning activities. The take estimates provided in Neptune's application are likely an overestimate of actual take for the following reasons: Neptune is applying the larger ZOI for all activities despite that some maintenance, repair, and decommissioning activities will occur at the hot tap/transfer manifold which is located in shallower water and is modeled to have a smaller zone of influence than the south buoy (3.12 km vs 3.45 km), summer marine mammal densities are used to calculate take; however, some activities may occur outside of the summer months when densities are lower, maintenance activities are not currently planned but two weeks of work is included here as a precaution for unexpected equipment malfunction prior to decommissioning, and the take estimates do not take into consideration the mitigation and monitoring measures that are proposed for inclusion in the IHA, if issued. Because some components of the project are unknown (e.g., days at hot tap vs days at south buoy; number of work days outside of peak summer abundance), NMFS is preliminarily accepting of these conservative estimates and is proposing to issue the requested amount of take.

    Acoustic propagation modeling for the proposed activity was completed using a version of the RAM. This model considers range and depth along with seasonal sound velocity and geoacoustic properties of the seafloor. Frequency dependence of the sound propagation characteristics was treated by computing acoustic transmission loss at the center frequencies of all 1/3 octave bands between 10 Hz and 2 kHz. Received sound pressure levels in each band were computed by applying frequency-dependent transmission losses to the corresponding 1/3 octave band source levels. The highest 1/3 octave band level at each interval was used as the received level at that range. In order to extrapolate ZOI spatial extent, the range to each threshold was also analyzed to determine the 95th percentile radius for each noise threshold level. More information on the modeling methodology can be found in Neptune's application (see ADDRESSES). Neptune concluded distance to the 120 dB re 1 μPa (rms) isopleth at the south buoy extends 1.9 nautical miles (3.45 km) resulting in a ZOI of 37.4 km2.

    The density calculation methodology applied to take estimates for this application is derived from the model results produced by Roberts et al. (2016) for the east coast region. These files are available as raster files from the NOAA Web site: http://seamap.env.duke.edu/models/Duke-EC-GOM-2015/. In order to determine cetacean densities for take estimates, the grid cells that included the ZOI for the hot tap, north, and south buoys were selected for months 5 through 10 (May-October). The estimated mean monthly abundance for each species for each month was an average of May to October grid cells. Monthly values were not available for some species (e.g., killer whale, blue whale); therefore, only the single value available is presented here. Estimates provided by the models are based on a grid cell size of 100 km2; therefore, model grid cell values were divided by 100 to determine animals km 2. Gray seal and harbor seal densities are not provided in the Roberts et al. (2016) models. Seal densities were derived from the Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP) using the Navy Oparea Density Estimate (NODE) model for the Northeast Opareas (Best et al., 2102). Densities for those species potentially taken by the specified activity are provided in Table 2 below.

    Take estimates were derived using the following calculation: T = D × ZOI × 84 days where T is equal to take and D is equal to density. As a review, the ZOI is 37.4 km2 based on distance to the 120 dB re 1 μPa (rms) at the south buoy while 84 days constitutes 70 days of decommissioning work and 14 days of unscheduled maintenance. Proposed take numbers, by species, is provided in Table 2.

    Table 2—Estimated Take of Marine Mammals, by Species, Incidental to the Specified Activity Species Estimated
  • population
  • (Waring
  • et al., 2015)
  • Density Estimated takes Population
  • (%)
  • North Atlantic right whale (Eubalaena glacialis) 476 0.000017 2 0.21. Fin whale (Balaenoptera physalus) 1,618 0.0034 12 0.12. Humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) 823 0.0032 10 0.22. Minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata) 20,741 0.0033 11 0.009. Sei whale (Balaenoptera borealis) 357 0.000036 2 0.28. Atlantic white-sided dolphin (Lagenorhynchus acutus) 48,819 0.039 124 0.043. Long-finned pilot whale (Globicephala melas) 26,535 0.0019 8 0.035. Harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena) 79,883 0.104 328 0.068. Bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) 77,532 0.003 10 0.002. Short beaked common dolphin (Delphinus delphis) 173,486 0.0071 * 270 0.002. Risso's dolphin (Grampus griseus) 18,250 0.000044 2 0.005. Killer whale (Orcinus orca) unk 0.0000089 2 Insufficient data. Harbor seal (Phoca vitulina) 75,834 0.097 305 0.067. Gray sea (Halichoerus grypus) unk 0.027 1586 0.002. * Although the take methodology results in an estimated take of 23 common dolphins, this species travels in large aggregations. Therefore, NMFS is proposing to authorize take based on two encounters of a group size documented within the ZOI in Neptune's monitoring reports (i.e., 135 × 2).
    Analysis and Preliminary Determination Negligible Impact

    NMFS has defined “negligible impact” in 50 CFR 216.103 as “an impact resulting from the specified activity that cannot be reasonably expected to, and is not reasonably likely to, adversely affect the species or stock through effects on annual rates of recruitment or survival.” In making a negligible impact determination, NMFS considers a variety of factors, including but not limited to: (1) The number of anticipated mortalities; (2) the number and nature of anticipated injuries; (3) the number, nature, intensity, and duration of Level B harassment; and (4) the context in which the takes occur.

    No injuries or mortalities are anticipated to occur as a result of Neptune's proposed port maintenance, repair, and decommissioning activities, and none are proposed to be authorized by NMFS. Animals in the area are not anticipated to incur any permanent hearing impairment (i.e., PTS) due to low source levels. The IHA would be conditioned to minimize the risk of vessel strike (see “Mitigation Measures”) including, but not limited to, reduced vessel speed and delaying transit if whales are detected within or visibility is less than 1,000 m.

    Many animals perform vital functions, such as feeding, resting, traveling, and socializing, on a diel cycle (24-hr cycle). Behavioral reactions to noise exposure (such as disruption of critical life functions, displacement, or avoidance of important habitat) are more likely to be significant if they last more than one diel cycle or recur on subsequent days (Southall et al., 2007). Consequently, a behavioral response lasting less than one day and not recurring on subsequent days is not considered particularly severe unless it could directly affect reproduction or survival (Southall et al., 2007). DP-thrusters may operate on consecutive days; however, NMFS does not anticipate a marine mammal to remain stationary such that it would be exposed to DP-thruster noise over multiple days. The intensity and nature of any incidental takes occurring from DP vessel thruster use is believed to be mild to moderate. The most likely effect from the action is localized, short-term behavioral disturbance from animals may avoid the area (and therefore avoid exposure) and some masking will likely occur; however, the implementation of the mitigation measures are intended to decrease these effects.

    As stated previously, NMFS' practice has been to apply the 120 dB re 1 μPa (rms) received level threshold for underwater continuous sound levels to determine whether take by Level B harassment occurs; however, not all animals react to sounds at this low level, and many will not show strong reactions (and in some cases any reaction) until sounds are much stronger. Southall et al. (2007) provide a severity scale for ranking observed behavioral responses of both freeranging marine mammals and laboratory subjects to various types of anthropogenic sound (see Table 4 in Southall et al. (2007)). Tables 15, 17, 19, and 21 in Southall et al. (2007) outline the numbers of low-frequency, mid-frequency, and high-frequency cetaceans and pinnipeds in water, respectively, reported as having behavioral responses to non-pulses in 10-dB received level increments. These tables illustrate, especially for cetaceans, more intense observed behavioral responses did not occur until sounds were higher than 120 dB re 1 μPa (rms). Many of the animals had no observable response at all when exposed to anthropogenic sound at levels of 120 dB re 1 μPa (rms) or higher.

    Potential impacts to marine mammal habitat were discussed previously in this document (see the “Anticipated Effects on Habitat” section). Although some disturbance is possible to food sources of marine mammals, the impacts are anticipated to be minor enough as to not affect annual rates of recruitment or survival of marine mammals in the area. Based on available habitat not impacted by the activity where feeding by marine mammals occurs versus the localized area of the maintenance, repair, and decommissioning activities, any missed feeding opportunities in the direct project area would be minor based on the fact that other feeding areas exist elsewhere.

    Taking into account the mitigation measures that are planned, effects on marine mammals are generally expected to be restricted to avoidance of a limited area around the Port and short-term changes in behavior, falling within the MMPA definition of “Level B harassment.” Mitigation measures would include minimizing harassment by powering down thrusters under certain conditions and three PSOs would be on-board each DP vessel to implement these measures. Based on the analysis contained herein of the likely effects of the specified activity on marine mammals and their habitat, and taking into consideration the implementation of the required monitoring and mitigation measures, NMFS preliminarily finds that the total take of marine mammals from thruster use during Port maintenance, repair, and decommissioning will have a negligible impact on the affected marine mammal species or stocks.

    Small Numbers Analysis

    As shown in Table 2, the percent of any marine mammal stock potentially taken by the specific activity is less than one percent, and Massachusetts Bay represents only a small fraction of the western North Atlantic basin where these animals occur. In addition, the take estimates include two weeks of maintenance and repair work that is currently not scheduled and may not occur prior to decommissioning. Based on the analysis contained herein of the likely effects of the specified activity on marine mammals and taking into consideration the implementation of the mitigation and monitoring measures, we preliminarily find that small numbers of marine mammals will be taken relative to the populations of the affected species or stocks.

    Impact on Availability of Affected Species or Stock for Taking for Subsistence Uses

    There are no relevant subsistence uses of marine mammals implicated by this action. Therefore, we have determined that the total taking of affected species or stocks would not have an unmitigable adverse impact on the availability of such species or stocks for taking for subsistence purposes.

    Endangered Species Act (ESA)

    On January 12, 2007, NMFS concluded consultation with MARAD and USCG under section 7 of the ESA on the proposed construction and operation of the Port and issued a Biological Opinion. The finding of that consultation was that the construction and operation of the Port may adversely affect, but is not likely to jeopardize, the continued existence of northern right, humpback, and fin whales, and is not likely to adversely affect sperm, sei, or blue whales and Kemp's ridley, loggerhead, green, or leatherback sea turtles.

    On March 2, 2010, MARAD and USCG sent a letter to NMFS requesting reinitiation of the section 7 consultation. MARAD and USCG determined that certain routine planned operations and maintenance activities, inspections, surveys, and unplanned repair work on the Port pipelines and flowlines, as well as any other Port component (including buoys, risers/umbilicals, mooring systems, and sub-sea manifolds), may constitute a modification not previously considered in the 2007 Biological Opinion. Decommissioning is addressed as one of the activities in the NOAA Biological Opinion for MARAD's issuance of a license for Neptune to own and operate the Port (dated July 12, 2010).

    On January 27, 2016, NMFS published a rule in the Federal Register expanding critical habitat for the North Atlantic right whale (81 FR 4838). This expansion incorporates the Port which was previously not within designated critical habitat. As such, NMFS is pursuing informal consultation with the Greater Atlantic Regional Office and will conclude all ESA consultation requirements prior to issuing the proposed IHA.

    National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

    MARAD and the USCG released a Final EIS/Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the construction, operation, and decommissioning of the Port (see ADDRESSES). A notice of availability was published by MARAD on November 2, 2006 (71 FR 64606). The Final EIS/EIR provides detailed information on the proposed project facilities, construction methods, and analysis of potential impacts on marine mammals.

    NMFS was a cooperating agency in the preparation of the Draft and Final EIS based on a Memorandum of Understanding related to the Licensing of Deepwater Ports entered into by the U.S. Department of Commerce along with 10 other government agencies. On June 3, 2008, NMFS adopted the USCG and MARAD Final EIS and issued a separate Record of Decision for issuance of previous MMPA incidental take authorizations pursuant to sections 101(a)(5)(A) and (D) of the MMPA for construction and operation of the Port, which includes thruster use. The analysis in the Final EIS regarding the impact of noise generated by thrusters supports the findings under the MMPA for issuance of this proposed authorization. NMFS has preliminarily determined no additional analysis under NEPA is needed.

    As a result of these preliminary determinations, we propose to issue an IHA to Neptune for taking marine mammals incidental to repair, maintenance, and decommissioning of the Port, Massachusetts Bay, provided the previously mentioned mitigation, monitoring, and reporting requirements are incorporated. The proposed IHA language is provided next. Neptune LNG LLC (Neptune), is hereby authorized under section 101(a)(5)(D) of the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA; 16 U.S.C. 1371(a)(5)(D)), to harass marine mammals incidental to maintenance, repair, and decommissioning of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) deepwater port in Massachusetts Bay when adhering to the following terms and conditions:

    1. This Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) is valid for a period of one year from the date of issuance.

    2. This IHA is valid only for dynamic positioning vessel thruster use associated with the maintenance, repair, and decommissioning of an LNG deepwater port in Massachusetts Bay.

    3. General Conditions

    (a) A copy of this IHA must be in the possession of the Neptune, its designees, and work crew personnel operating under the authority of this IHA.

    (b) The species authorized for taking are provided in Table 1 (attached).

    (c) The taking by injury (Level A harassment), serious injury, or death of any of the species listed in condition 3(b) of the Authorization or any taking of any other species of marine mammal is prohibited and may result in the modification, suspension, or revocation of this IHA.

    (d) Neptune shall conduct briefings between construction supervisors and crews, marine mammal monitoring team, acoustical monitoring team, and Neptune staff or contractors prior to the start of maintenance, repair and decommissioning, and when new personnel join the work, in order to explain responsibilities, communication procedures, marine mammal monitoring protocol, and operational procedures.

    (e) The entity may not conduct decommissioning work prior to May 1, 2017.

    4. Mitigation Measures

    The holder of this Authorization is required to implement the following mitigation measures:

    (a) Any whale visually sighted or otherwise detected (e.g., on the Navigational Telex (NAVTEX), NOAA Weather Radio, and North Atlantic right whale Sighting Advisory System (SAS)) within 1,000 m of a vessel shall result in a heightened alert status which will require all project vessels to operate at slow speeds of four knots or less and any non-critical departure plans to be delayed.

    (b) If a right whale call is confirmed on the two closest passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) buoys or on any three PAM buoys, all vessels will go into heightened alert status requiring all project vessels to operate at slow speeds of 4 knots or less and any non-critical departure plans to be delayed.

    (c) Any whale sighted within or approaching 500 m of a vessel shall result in that vessel using idle speed and/or ceasing all movement. If the vessel is operating dynamic positioning (DP) vessel thrusters, the thrusters will be shut down or reduced to minimal safe operating power. The speed and activity restrictions shall continue until either the observed whale has been confirmed outside of and on a path away from 500 m from the vessel or 30 minutes have passed without another confirmed detection.

    (d) Any non-whale marine mammal species detected within or approaching 100 m of a vessel shall result in that vessel using idle speed and/or ceasing all movement. If the vessel is operating DP thrusters, the thrusters will be shut down or reduced to minimal safe operating power. The speed and activity restrictions shall continue until either the observed marine mammal has been confirmed outside and on a path away from 100 m from the activity or 30 minutes have passed without another confirmed detection.

    (e) All project vessels will remain at least 500 m away from any North Atlantic right whale and at least 100 m away from all other marine mammals. If a marine mammal approaches a stationary vessel, that vessel will sit idle or turn off engines until the marine mammal has left the designated zone or 30 minutes have passed without another confirmed detection.

    (f) All vessels shall utilize the International Maritime Organization (IMO)-approved Boston Traffic Separation Scheme (TSS) on their approach to and departure from the Port and/or the unscheduled maintenance/maintenance area at the earliest practicable point of transit in order to avoid the risk of whale strikes.

    (g) Repair vessels, dive support vessels (DSVs), and heavy lift vessels (HLVs), will transit at 10 knots (18.5 km/hr) or less in the following seasons and areas, which either correspond to or are more restrictive than the times and areas in NMFS' final rule (73 FR 60173 [October 10, 2008]) to implement speed restrictions to reduce the likelihood and severity of ship strikes of right whales:

    • Cape Cod Bay (CCB) Seasonal Management Area (SMA) from January 1 through May 15, which includes all waters in CCB, extending to all shorelines of Massachusetts Bay, with a northern boundary of 42°12′ N. latitude;

    • Off Race Point SMA year round, which is bounded by straight lines connecting the following coordinates in the order stated: 42°30′ N. 69°45′ W.; thence to 42°30′ N. 70°30′ W.; thence to 42°12′ N. 70°30′ W.; thence to 42°12′ N. 70°12′ W.; thence to 42°04′56.5″ N. 70°12′ W.; thence along mean high water line and inshore limits of collision regulations (COLREGS) limit to a latitude of 41°40′ N.; thence due east to 41°41′ N. 69°45′ W.; thence back to starting point; and

    • Great South Channel (GSC) SMA from April 1 through July 31, which is bounded by straight lines connecting the following coordinates in the order stated:

    42°30′ N. 69°45′ W.

    41°40′ N. 69°45′ W.

    41°00′ N. 69°05′ W.

    42°09′ N. 67°08′ 24″ W.

    42°30′ N. 67°27′ W.

    42°30′ N. 69°45′ W.

    (h) All vessels transiting to and from the project area shall report their activities to the mandatory reporting Section of the USCG to remain apprised of North Atlantic right whale movements within the area. All vessels entering and exiting the Mandatory Ship Reporting Area (MSRA) shall report their activities to the USCG's northeast whale reporting system: WHALESNORTH. Vessel operators shall contact the USCG by standard procedures promulgated through the Notice to Mariner system. Information regarding the geographical boundaries and reporting details can be found at: http://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/pr/shipstrike/msr.htm.

    (i) Prior to leaving the dock to begin transit, the project vessel must contact one of the protected species observers (PSOs) on watch to receive an update of sightings within the visual observation area. If the PSO has observed a North Atlantic right whale within 30 minutes of the transit start, the vessel will hold for 30 minutes and again get a clearance to leave from the PSOs on board. PSOs will assess whale activity and visual observation ability at the time of the transit request to clear the barge for release.

    (j) No vessels will transit from shore to the project site during nighttime or when visibility is reduced below 1,000 m, unless an emergency situation requires the vessel to transit during those times. Should transit at night be required, the maximum speed will be 5 knots (9.3 km/hr).

    (k) All vessels will consult NAVTEX, NOAA Weather Radio, the NOAA Right Whale SAS or other means to obtain current large whale sighting information.

    (l) If member of the crew visually detects a marine mammal within the zone of influence (ZOI) (3.45 km), they will alert the lead PSO on watch who shall then relay the sighting information to the other vessels to document take, determine if mitigation actions are necessary, as required by this IHA, and ensure action(s) can be taken to avoid physical contact with marine mammals.

    (m) In response to any whale sightings or acoustic detections, and taking into account exceptional circumstances, all vessels shall actively communicate with the lead PSO and will take appropriate actions to minimize the risk of striking whales.

    (n) Neptune must immediately suspend any repair, maintenance, or decommissioning activities if a dead or injured marine mammal is found in the vicinity of the project area, and the death or injury of the animal could be attributable to the LNG facility activities. Neptune must contact NMFS and the Greater Atlantic Regional Office (GARFO) Marine Mammal Stranding and Disentanglement Program. Activities will not resume until review and approval has been given by NMFS.

    (o) Use of lights during repair or maintenance activities shall be limited to areas where work is actually occurring, and all other lights must be extinguished. Lights must be downshielded to illuminate the deck and shall not intentionally illuminate surrounding waters, so as not to attract whales or their prey to the area.

    (p) Transit route, destination, sea conditions and any marine mammal sightings/mitigation actions during watch shall be recorded in the log book.

    (q) The material barges and tugs used in Port repair, maintenance, and decommissioning shall transit from the operations dock to the work sites during daylight hours when possible provided the safety of the vessels is not compromised. Should transit at night be required, the maximum speed of the tug shall be 5 knots.

    (r) All repair vessels must maintain a speed of 10 knots or less during daylight hours. All vessels shall operate at 5 knots or less at all times within 5 km of the maintenance, repair, or decommissioning area.

    5. Monitoring

    The holder of this Authorization is required to conduct marine mammal monitoring during port maintenance, repair, and decommissioning. Monitoring and reporting shall be conducted in accordance with the Monitoring Plan (see Application).

    Visual Monitoring

    (a) All vessel crew members will undergo environmental training. Crew members who will act as designated watch personnel during heightened awareness conditions will receive specialized observer training.

    (b) All vessel operation requirements, guidelines and mitigation requirements will be clearly posted on the bridge of all project vessels.

    (c) Neptune or its contractor shall provide a half-day training course to designated crew members assigned to the transit barges and other support vessels. This course shall cover topics including, but not limited to, descriptions of the marine mammals found in the area, mitigation and monitoring requirements contained in this Authorization, sighting log requirements, and procedures for reporting injured or dead marine mammals. These designated crew members shall be required to keep watch on the bridge and immediately notify the navigator of any whale sightings. All watch crew shall sign into a bridge log book upon start and end of watch. Transit route, destination, sea conditions, and any protected species sightings/mitigation actions during watch shall be recorded in the log book.

    (d) Each DP vessel will employ three professional PSOs. Two PSOs will conduct continual visual watches on a shift basis during all daylight hours. Daytime PSOs will monitor the acoustic alert program when not on active visual watch. During the night, one PSO will monitor the acoustic alert program and will scan the area around the vessel using a thermal imaging or similar enhancement device for 15 minutes each hour.

    (e) All professional PSOs will be approved by NMFS prior to the start of the project, will have at least one full year of marine mammal observation experience in the U.S. Atlantic, Pacific, or Gulf of Mexico, and will have experience in acoustic monitoring and baleen whale detection.

    (f) Each non-DP vessel will designate one trained crew member to stand a dedicated watch during all vessel movement and during times of heightened awareness. All designated crew watch personnel will undergo a full day of project-specific mitigation and monitoring training alongside the professional PSOs.

    (g) PSOs will be responsible for advising vessel crew members on the required operating procedures and mitigation measures that are defined in this IHA. PSOs will be responsible for providing the required observation and detection data during the decommissioning activities.

    (h) Neptune shall maintain a passive acoustic monitoring array consisting of four near real-time autonomous recording units (ARUs) strategically placed around the north and south buoys.

    (i) If a whale call detection alert is received, the PSO will review the data and confirm the signal is a whale call. Upon verification, the PSO will monitor the other buoys for call detections. If the PSO verifies detections from two other buoys, then it will be determined that a whale is within the heightened awareness area. Mitigation measures for acoustic detection of whales will be the same as those for visual detection described above.

    6. Reporting

    The holder of this Authorization is required to:

    (a) Submit a draft report on all monitoring conducted under the IHA within ninety calendar days of the completion of marine mammal and acoustic monitoring or sixty days prior to the issuance of any subsequent IHA for this project, whichever comes first. A final report shall be prepared and submitted within thirty days following resolution of comments on the draft report from NMFS. This report must contain the informational elements described in the Monitoring Plan, at minimum (see attached), and shall also include:

    (i) Location (in longitude and latitude coordinates), time, and the nature of the maintenance and repair activities;

    (ii) Indication of whether a DP system was operated, and if so, the number of thrusters being used and the time and duration of DP vessel operation;

    (iii) Marine mammals observed in the within the ZOI (3.45 km in all directions) (number, species, age group, and initial behavior);

    (iv) The distance of observed marine mammals from the maintenance, repair, or decommissioning activities;

    (v) Changes, if any, in marine mammal behaviors during the observation;

    (vi) A description of any mitigation measures (power-down, shutdown, etc.) implemented;

    (vii) Weather condition (Beaufort sea state, wind speed, wind direction, ambient temperature, precipitation, and percent cloud cover, etc.);

    (viii) Condition of the observation (visibility and glare); and

    (ix) Details of passive acoustic detections and any action taken in response to those detections.

    (b) Reporting injured or dead marine mammals:

    (i) In the unanticipated event that the specified activity clearly causes the take of a marine mammal in a manner prohibited by this IHA, such as an injury (Level A harassment), serious injury, or mortality, Neptune shall immediately cease the specified activities and report the incident to the Office of Protected Resources (301-427-8401), NMFS, and the GARFO Marine Mammal Stranding Coordinator (978-281-9300). The report must include the following information:

    1. Time and date of the incident;

    2. Description of the incident;

    3. Environmental conditions (e.g., wind speed and direction, Beaufort sea state, cloud cover, and visibility);

    4. Description of all marine mammal observations and active sound source use in the 24 hours preceding the incident;

    5. Species identification or description of the animal(s) involved;

    6. Fate of the animal(s); and

    7. Photographs or video footage of the animal(s).

    Activities shall not resume until NMFS is able to review the circumstances of the prohibited take. NMFS will work with Neptune to determine what measures are necessary to minimize the likelihood of further prohibited take and ensure MMPA compliance. Neptune may not resume their activities until notified by NMFS.

    (ii) In the event that Neptune discovers an injured or dead marine mammal, and the lead observer determines that the cause of the injury or death is unknown and the death is relatively recent (e.g., in less than a moderate state of decomposition), Neptune shall immediately report the incident to the Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, and the GARFO Stranding Coordinator, NMFS.

    The report must include the same information identified in 6(b)(i) of this IHA. Activities may continue while NMFS reviews the circumstances of the incident. NMFS will work with Neptune to determine whether additional mitigation measures or modifications to the activities are appropriate.

    (iii) In the event that Neptune discovers an injured or dead marine mammal, and the lead observer determines that the injury or death is not associated with or related to the activities authorized in the IHA (e.g., previously wounded animal, carcass with moderate to advanced decomposition, or scavenger damage), Neptune shall report the incident to the Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, and the GARFO Stranding Coordinator, NMFS, within 24 hours of the discovery. Neptune shall provide photographs or video footage or other documentation of the stranded animal sighting to NMFS.

    7. This Authorization may be modified, suspended or withdrawn if the holder fails to abide by the conditions prescribed herein, or if NMFS determines the authorized taking is having more than a negligible impact on the species or stock of affected marine mammals.

    Dated: August 22, 2016. Donna S. Wieting, Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20407 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Fishery Products Subject to Trade Restrictions Pursuant to Certification Under the High Seas Driftnet Fishing (HSDF) Moratorium Protection Act AGENCY:

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on proposed and/or continuing information collections, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.

    DATES:

    Written comments must be submitted on or before October 24, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Direct all written comments to Jennifer Jessup, Departmental Paperwork Clearance Officer, Department of Commerce, Room 6616, 14th and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230 (or via the Internet at [email protected]).

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Requests for additional information or copies of the information collection instrument and instructions should be directed to Kristin Rusello, Office of International Affairs and Seafood Inspection, F/IS5, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910, (301) 427-8376, or [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    I. Abstract

    This request is for extension of a revision per RIN 0648-AY15, approved as an emergency request.

    Pursuant to the High Seas Driftnet Fishing Moratorium Protection Act (Moratorium Protection Act), if certain fish or fish products of a nation are subject to import prohibitions to facilitate enforcement, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) requires that other fish or fish products from that nation that are not subject to the import prohibitions must be accompanied by documentation of admissibility. A duly authorized official/agent of the applicant's Government must certify that the fish in the shipments being imported into the United States (U.S.) are of a species that are not subject to an import restriction of the U.S. If a nation is identified under the Moratorium Protection Act and fails to receive a certification decision from the Secretary of Commerce, products from that nation that are not subject to the import prohibitions must be accompanied by the documentation of admissibility.

    The approved revision added two new requirements. Under the import certification requirements in the final rule, there was a procedure for making comparability findings for nations that are eligible for exporting fish and fish products to the United States. The nations may receive a comparability finding to export fish and fish products to the United States by providing documentation that a nation's bycatch reduction regulatory program is comparable in effectiveness to that of the United States. A comparability finding is valid for four years. In the interim, nations are required to submit progress reports demonstrating that their regulatory programs are still meeting the conditions for a comparability finding.

    This proposed revision makes minor modifications to the “certification of admissibility” established in conjunction with the High Seas Driftnet Fishing Moratorium Protection Act final rule (RIN 0648-BA89). This revision also changes the title of the collection and the Certification of Admissibility Form from “Fishery Products Subject to Trade Restrictions Pursuant to Certification under the High Seas Driftnet Fishing Moratorium Protection Act” to “Fishery Products Subject to Trade Restrictions Pursuant to Certification under the High Seas Driftnet Fishing Moratorium Protection Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act”.

    This information collection is necessary to comply with the Marine Mammal Protection (MMPA) Act 16 U.S.C. 1371 and 1372 and the final rule RIN 0648-AY15 to implement these provisions within the regulations of 50 CFR 216.24. The MMPA contains provisions to address the incidental mortality and serious injury of marine mammals in both domestic and foreign commercial fisheries. With respect to foreign fisheries, section 101(a)(2) of the MMPA (16 U.S.C. 1371(a)(2)) states that “The Secretary of the Treasury shall ban the importation of commercial fish or products from fish which have been caught with commercial fishing technology which results in the incidental kill or incidental serious injury of ocean mammals in excess of United States standards. For purposes of applying the preceding sentence, the Secretary [of Commerce] (A) shall insist on reasonable proof from the government of any nation from which fish or fish products will be exported to the United States of the effects on ocean mammals of the commercial fishing technology in use for such fish or fish products exported from such nation to the United States.”

    II. Method of Collection

    Submissions will be accepted via email or fax.

    III. Data

    OMB Control Number: 0648-0651.

    Form Number(s): None.

    Type of Review: Regular submission (extension of an emergency revision).

    Affected Public: Business or other for-profit organizations.

    Estimated Number of Respondents: 90.

    Estimated Time per Response: 10 minutes.

    Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 150 hours.

    Estimated Total Annual Cost to Public: $10 in reporting/recordkeeping costs.

    IV. Request for Comments

    Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden (including hours and cost) of the proposed collection of information; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

    Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized and/or included in the request for OMB approval of this information collection; they also will become a matter of public record.

    Dated: August 22, 2016. Sarah Brabson, NOAA PRA Clearance Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20402 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XE816 Permanent Advisory Committee To Advise the U.S. Commissioners to the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission; Meeting Announcement AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice of public meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS announces a public meeting of the Permanent Advisory Committee (PAC) to advise the U.S. Commissioners to the Commission for the Conservation and Management of Highly Migratory Fish Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean (WCPFC) on September 14, 2016. Meeting topics are provided under the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this notice. The meeting will be held via conference call. Members of the public may submit written comments; comments may be submitted up to 3 days in advance of the meeting. Mail comments to Emily Crigler at the address provided in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section below.

    DATES:

    The meeting of the PAC will be held via conference call on September 14, 2016, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. HST (or until business is concluded).

    ADDRESSES:

    The public meeting will be conducted via conference call. For details on how to call in to the conference line, please contact Emily Crigler, NMFS Pacific Islands Regional Office; telephone: 808-725-5036; email: [email protected] Documents to be considered by the PAC will be sent out via email in advance of the conference call. Please submit contact information to Emily Crigler (telephone: 808-725-5036; email: [email protected]) at least 3 days in advance of the call to receive documents via email.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Emily Crigler, NMFS Pacific Islands Regional Office; 1845 Wasp Blvd., Bldg. 176, Honolulu, HI 96818; telephone: 808-725-5036; facsimile: 808-725-5215; email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    In accordance with the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Convention Implementation Act (16 U.S.C. 6901 et seq.), the Permanent Advisory Committee, or PAC, has been formed to advise the U.S. Commissioners to the WCPFC. Members of the PAC have been appointed by the Secretary of Commerce in consultation with the U.S. Commissioners to the WCPFC. The PAC supports the work of the U.S. National Section to the WCPFC in an advisory capacity. The U.S. National Section is made up of the U.S. Commissioners and the Department of State. NMFS Pacific Islands Regional Office provides administrative and technical support to the PAC in cooperation with the Department of State. More information on the WCPFC, established under the Convention on the Conservation and Management of Highly Migratory Fish Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean, can be found on the WCPFC Web site: http://wcpfc.int/.

    Meeting Topics

    The purpose of the September 14, 2016, conference call is to discuss outcomes of the 2016 regular session of the WCPFC Scientific Committee (SC12) and to begin soliciting comments on the recently distributed Chair's paper on Harvest Strategy Management Objectives and a Consultative Draft of a Bridging CMM on Tropical Tunas to succeed CMM 2015-01.

    Special Accommodations

    The conference call is accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to Emily Crigler at 808-725-5036 at least ten working days prior to the meeting.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 6902 et seq.

    Dated: August 22, 2016. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20405 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Air Force Notice of Intent To Prepare a Legislative Environmental Impact Statement for the Nevada Test and Training Range Military Land Withdrawal at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada AGENCY:

    United States Air Force (lead agency) and Bureau of Land Management, United States Department of Energy, United States Fish and Wildlife Service, and Nevada Department of Wildlife (cooperating agencies)

    ACTION:

    Notice of Intent

    SUMMARY:

    The United States Air Force (Air Force) is issuing this notice to notify the public of its intent to prepare a Legislative Environmental Impact Statement (LEIS) for the Nevada Test and Training Range (NTTR) military land withdrawal at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada. The LEIS is being prepared in accordance with National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969; 40 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Parts 1500-1508, the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) regulations for implementing NEPA; and the Air Force Environmental Impact Analysis Process (EIAP) [32 CFR part 989].

    This notice also serves to invite early public and agency participation in determining the scope of environmental issues and alternatives to be analyzed in the LEIS and to identify and eliminate from detailed study the issues which are not significant. To effectively define the full range of issues and concerns to be evaluated in the LEIS, the Air Force is soliciting scoping comments from interested local, state and federal agencies, interested American Indian tribes, and interested members of the public. This NOI also serves to provide early notice of compliance with Executive Order (EO) 11990, “Protection of Wetlands” and EO 11988, “Floodplain Management.” State and federal regulatory agencies with special expertise in wetlands and floodplains have been contacted to request comment.

    Scoping comments may be submitted to the Air Force at the planned public scoping meetings and/or in writing.

    DATES:

    The Air Force plans to hold five public scoping meetings from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., on the dates and at the locations listed below.

    • Wednesday, October 12, 2016: Beatty Community Center, 100 A Avenue South, Beatty, NV 89003 • Thursday, October 13, 2016: Tonopah Convention Center, 301 Brougher Avenue, Tonopah, NV 89049 • Tuesday, October 18, 2016: Caliente Elementary School, 289 Lincoln Street, Caliente, NV 89008 • Wednesday, October 19, 2016: Pahranagat Valley High School, 151 S. Main Street, Alamo, NV 89001 • Thursday, October 20, 2016: Aliante Hotel, 7300 Aliante Parkway, North Las Vegas, NV 89084 The agenda for each scoping meeting is as follows: • 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.—Open House and comment submission • 6:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.—Air Force Presentation • 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.—Open House and comment submission resumes Local notices announcing scheduled dates, locations, and addresses for each meeting will be published in the Bullseye, Pahrump Valley Times, Lincoln County Record, Tonopah Times-Bonanza, and Las Vegas Review-Journal newspapers a minimum of fifteen (15) days prior to each meeting.

    Comments will be accepted at any time during the Environmental Impact Analysis Process (EIAP). However, to ensure the Air Force has sufficient time to consider public input in the preparation of the Draft LEIS, scoping comments must be submitted no later than December 10, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Information on the NTTR Military Land Withdrawal and LEIS process can be accessed at the project Web site at www.nttrleis.com. The project Web site can be used to submit scoping comments to the Air Force, or comments and inquiries may also be submitted by mail or email to the 99th Air Base Wing Public Affairs, 4430 Grissom Ave., Ste. 107, Nellis AFB, NV 89191 or by email at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The current NTTR land withdrawal expires in November, 2021. In accordance with the Military Lands Withdrawal Act of 1999, the Air Force has notified Congress of a continuing military need for the NTTR withdrawal. Military land withdrawal applications have been prepared and submitted to Bureau of Land Management (BLM). The segregation of lands proposed for military withdrawal are addressed in a separate BLM Federal Register notice.

    The Air Force LEIS supports Congressional decision-making for the proposed military land withdrawal and will be programmatic in nature, adding value by setting out a broad view of environmental impacts and alternatives for Congress to consider. Following Congressional action on the NTTR land withdrawal proposals, site specific proposals based on particular DoD or Air Force defined needs for the range would be evaluated with the appropriate level of tiered or supplemental NEPA.

    In particular, the LEIS will analyze alternatives for military land withdrawal of the NTTR to improve the range capacity and capability to support military test and training requirements now and into the future. The LEIS will assess the potential environmental consequences of the proposal to extend the existing NTTR military land withdrawal beyond the current withdrawal expiration date. As part of the withdrawal extension, the Air Force proposes to continue military operations on the NTTR's existing 2,949,603 acres of land. In addition to extending the existing land withdrawal, the Air Force is also proposing to withdraw up to an additional 301,507 acres to improve the range's capacity to support military testing and training.

    The alternatives being evaluated in the LEIS include: (1) Extending the existing land withdrawal and management of the NTTR (Status Quo); (2) extending the existing land withdrawal and providing the Air Force with increased access for military activities in the South Range of the NTTR; (3) Alternative 1 or 2 and expanding the existing withdrawal by including up to 301,507 additional acres, via three sub-alternatives; (4) establishing the time period of the withdrawal as either 20 years, 50 years, or as an indefinite military withdrawal; and (5) the No Action alternative which includes returning NTTR lands to the public domain, through the Department of the Interior. The alternatives structure allows for combining elements of alternatives in an additive fashion. For example, Alternative 2, could be selected along with sub-alternatives of Alternatives 3 (an option for expansion) and 4 (option for duration) as part of the Air Force's recommendation to Congress for the future military withdrawal. Within the framework of these alternatives, the LEIS will support Congressional action by identifying and evaluating potential impacts to land use, airspace, safety, noise, hazardous materials and solid waste, earth resources, water resources, air quality, transportation, wilderness and wilderness study areas, cultural resources, biological resources, socioeconomics, and environmental justice.

    Henry Williams, Acting Air Force Federal Register Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20401 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 5001-10-P
    DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION [Docket No. ED-2016-ICCD-0068] Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Improvement Act of 2006 (Pub. L. 109-270) State Plan Guide AGENCY:

    Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education (OCTAE), Department of Education (ED).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. chapter 3501 et seq.), ED is proposing an extension of an existing information collection.

    DATES:

    Interested persons are invited to submit comments on or before September 26, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    To access and review all the documents related to the information collection listed in this notice, please use http://www.regulations.gov by searching the Docket ID number ED-2016-ICCD-0068. Comments submitted in response to this notice should be submitted electronically through the Federal eRulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov by selecting the Docket ID number or via postal mail, commercial delivery, or hand delivery. Please note that comments submitted by fax or email and those submitted after the comment period will not be accepted. Written requests for information or comments submitted by postal mail or delivery should be addressed to the Director of the Information Collection Clearance Division, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., LBJ, Room 2E-349, Washington, DC 20202-4537.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For specific questions related to collection activities, please contact Braden Goetz, 202-245-7405.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Department of Education (ED), in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA) (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)), provides the general public and Federal agencies with an opportunity to comment on proposed, revised, and continuing collections of information. This helps the Department assess the impact of its information collection requirements and minimize the public's reporting burden. It also helps the public understand the Department's information collection requirements and provide the requested data in the desired format. ED is soliciting comments on the proposed information collection request (ICR) that is described below. The Department of Education is especially interested in public comment addressing the following issues: (1) Is this collection necessary to the proper functions of the Department; (2) will this information be processed and used in a timely manner; (3) is the estimate of burden accurate; (4) how might the Department enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (5) how might the Department minimize the burden of this collection on the respondents, including through the use of information technology. Please note that written comments received in response to this notice will be considered public records.

    Title of Collection: Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Improvement Act of 2006 (P.L. 109-270) State Plan Guide.

    OMB Control Number: 1830-0029.

    Type of Review: An extension of an existing information collection.

    Respondents/Affected Public: State, Local, and Tribal Governments.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Responses: 56.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Burden Hours: 2,240.

    Abstract: This information collection solicits from all eligible States and outlying areas the State plans required under Title I of the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006 (Perkins IV) (P.L. 109-270), as well as, for those States and outlying areas that fail to meet 90 percent of their performance levels for an indicator for three consecutive years, periodic reports on their progress in implementing the improvement plans required by section 123(a)(1) of Perkins IV.

    Dated: August 22, 2016. Tomakie Washington, Acting Director, Information Collection Clearance Division, Office of the Chief Privacy Officer, Office of Management.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20370 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Western Area Power Administration Desert Southwest Region Transmission, Transmission Losses, Unreserved Use Penalties, and Ancillary Services—Rate Order No. WAPA-175 AGENCY:

    Western Area Power Administration, DOE.

    ACTION:

    Notice of Final Formula Rates for Transmission and Ancillary Services.

    SUMMARY:

    The Deputy Secretary of Energy has confirmed and approved Rate Order No. WAPA-175 and Rate Schedules PD-NTS4 and INT-NTS4, placing formula rates for Network Integration Transmission Service (Network) on the Parker-Davis Project (P-DP) and Pacific Northwest-Pacific Southwest Intertie Project (Intertie) of the Western Area Power Administration (WAPA) into effect on an interim basis. The Deputy Secretary also confirmed and approved Rate Schedules DSW-TL1, DSW-UU1, DSW-SD4, DSW-RS4, DSW-FR4, DSW-EI4, DSW-SPR4, DSW-SUR4, and DSW-GI2, placing formula rates for transmission losses, unreserved use penalties, and ancillary services from WAPA's Desert Southwest Region (DSW) and Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority (WALC) into effect on an interim basis. The provisional formula rates will provide sufficient revenue to pay all annual costs, including interest expense, and repay applicable investments within the allowable periods.

    DATES:

    Rate Schedules PD-NTS4, INT-NTS4, DSW-TL1, DSW-UU1, DSW-SD4, DSW-RS4, DSW-FR4, DSW-EI4, DSW-SPR4, DSW-SUR4, and DSW-GI2 are effective on the first day of the first full billing period beginning on or after October 1, 2016, and will remain in effect through September 30, 2021, pending approval by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on a final basis or until superseded.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Mr. Ronald E. Moulton, Regional Manager, Desert Southwest Region, Western Area Power Administration, P.O. Box 6457, Phoenix, AZ 85005-6457, (602) 605-2453, or Mr. Scott Lund, Rates Manager, Desert Southwest Region, Western Area Power Administration, P.O. Box 6457, Phoenix, AZ 85005-6457, (602) 605-2442, email [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    WAPA's DSW published a Federal Register notice on February 3, 2016 (81 FR 5741), announcing the proposed formula rates, initiating a public consultation and comment period, and setting forth the date and location of public information and comment forums. On February 4, 2016, customers and interested parties were provided a copy of the published notice. WAPA's DSW held both forums in Phoenix, Arizona, on March 30, 2016.

    The previous Rate Schedules PD-NTS3, INT-NTS3, DSW-SD3, DSW-RS3, DSW-FR3, DSW-EI3, DSW-SPR3, DSW-SUR3, and DSW-GI1 for Rate Order No. WAPA-151 were approved by FERC for a 5-year period through September 30, 2016.1 Several of these rate schedules contain formula rates that were calculated each year to include the most recent financial, load, and schedule information, as applicable. The new rate schedules continue this approach.

    1 Rate Order No. WAPA-151 was approved by FERC on a final basis on March 5, 2012, in Docket No. EF11-14-000 (138 FERC ¶ 62,198).

    Transmission Services

    Rate Schedules PD-NTS4 and INT-NTS4 for Network on the P-DP and Intertie are based on a revenue requirement that recovers the costs for providing transmission service. This includes the costs for scheduling, system control, and dispatch service needed to provide the transmission service.

    Rate Schedule DSW-TL1 for Transmission Losses is a new rate schedule that provides for the recovery of losses associated with transmission service. Previously, losses were addressed in the transmission service rate schedules for each project administered by WAPA's DSW.

    Rate Schedule DSW-UU1 for Unreserved Use Penalties is also a new rate schedule that provides for a penalty, in addition to the usual charge for transmission service, for the use of transmission capacity that has not been reserved or has been used in excess of the amount reserved. Previously, penalty provisions for unauthorized use were included in the transmission service rate schedules for each project administered by WAPA's DSW.

    Ancillary Services

    DSW provides seven ancillary services pursuant to WAPA's Open Access Transmission Tariff (OATT). These services include: (1) Scheduling, System Control, and Dispatch (DSW-SD4); (2) Reactive Supply and Voltage Control (DSW-RS4); (3) Regulation and Frequency Response (DSW-FR4); (4) Energy Imbalance (DSW-EI4); (5) Spinning Reserve (DSW-SPR4); (6) Supplemental Reserve (DSW-SUR4), and (7) Generator Imbalance (DSW-GI2).

    Changes were made to the formula rates for Regulation and Frequency Response, Energy Imbalance, and Generator Imbalance. The formula rate for Regulation and Frequency Response now includes the application of variable capacity multipliers to the installed capacity of variable energy resources. The formula rates for Energy Imbalance and Generator Imbalance now have the same bandwidth structure for on-peak and off-peak hours. No changes were made to the formula rates for the other ancillary services. Minor editorial changes were made to rate schedule language to provide clarification and make them more uniform and consistent.

    By Delegation Order No. 00-037.00A, effective October 25, 2013, the Secretary of Energy delegated: (1) The authority to develop power and transmission rates to the Administrator of WAPA; (2) the authority to confirm, approve, and place such rates into effect on an interim basis to the Deputy Secretary of Energy; and (3) the authority to confirm, approve, and place into effect on a final basis, to remand or to disapprove such rates to FERC. Federal rules (10 CFR part 903) govern Department of Energy procedures for public participation in power and transmission rate adjustments.

    Under Delegation Order Nos. 00-037.00A and 00-001.00F and in compliance with 10 CFR part 903 and 18 CFR part 300, I hereby confirm, approve, and place Rate Order No. WAPA-175, which provides the formula rates for DSW transmission, transmission losses, unreserved use penalties, and ancillary services into effect on an interim basis. The new Rate Schedules PD-NTS4, INT-NTS4, DSW-TL1, DSW-UU1, DSW-SD4, DSW-RS4, DSW-FR4, DSW-EI4, DSW-SPR4, DSW-SUR4, and DSW-GI2 will be submitted promptly to FERC for confirmation and approval on a final basis.

    Dated: August 18, 2016. Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall, Deputy Secretary of Energy. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY DEPUTY SECRETARY

    In the matter of: Western Area Power Administration, Desert Southwest Region, Rate Adjustment for Transmission Service, Transmission Losses, Unreserved Use Penalties, and Ancillary Services.

    Rate Order No. WAPA-175
    ORDER CONFIRMING, APPROVING, AND PLACING FORMULA RATES FOR TRANSMISSION SERVICE, TRANSMISSION LOSSES, UNRESERVED USE PENALTIES, AND ANCILLARY SERVICES INTO EFFECT ON AN INTERIM BASIS

    The formula rates set forth in this order are established pursuant to Section 302 of the Department of Energy (DOE) Organization Act (42 U.S.C. 7152). This act transferred to and vested in the Secretary of Energy the power marketing functions of the Secretary of the Department of the Interior and the Bureau of Reclamation under the Reclamation Act of 1902 (ch. 1093, 32 Stat. 388), as amended and supplemented by subsequent laws, particularly section 9(c) of the Reclamation Project Act of 1939 (43 U.S.C. 485h(c)) and other acts that specifically apply to the projects involved.

    By Delegation Order No. 00-037.00A, effective October 25, 2013, the Secretary of Energy delegated: (1) the authority to develop power and transmission rates to the Administrator of the Western Area Power Administration (WAPA); (2) the authority to confirm, approve, and place such rates into effect on an interim basis to the Deputy Secretary of Energy; and (3) the authority to confirm, approve, and place into effect on a final basis, to remand or to disapprove such rates to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). Federal rules (10 CFR part 903) govern DOE procedures for public participation in power and transmission rate adjustments.

    Acronyms and Definitions

    As used in this Rate Order, the following acronyms and definitions apply:

    Balancing Authority (BA) The responsible entity that integrates resource plans ahead of time, maintains load-interchange-generation balance within a Balancing Authority Area, and supports interconnection frequency in real-time. Balancing Authority (BA) Area The collection of generation, transmission, and loads within the metered boundaries of the Balancing Authority. DOE United States Department of Energy. DSW Desert Southwest Region. FERC Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Kilowatt (kW) Electrical unit of capacity equal to 1,000 watts. Megawatt (MW) Electrical unit of capacity equal to 1,000 kW or 1,000,000 watts. Network Network Integration Transmission Service. OATT WAPA's revised Open Access Transmission Tariff, effective May 13, 2013. Open Access Same-Time Informaton System (OASIS) An electronic posting system that a service provider maintains for transmission access data that allows users to view information simultaneously. Transmission Service Provider (TSP) Any utility that owns, operates, or controls facilities used to transmit electric energy. VAR Volt-Ampere Reactive, a unit by which reactive power is expressed. VER Variable energy resources. WALC Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority. WAPA Western Area Power Administration. Effective Date

    The provisional formula rates are effective on the first day of the first full billing period beginning on or after October 1, 2016, and will remain in effect through September 30, 2021, pending approval by FERC on a final basis or until superseded.

    Public Notice and Comment

    WAPA followed the Procedures for Public Participation in Power and Transmission Rate Adjustments and Extensions, 10 CFR part 903, in developing these formula rates and schedules. WAPA took the following steps to involve the public in the rate adjustment process:

    1. On July 2, 2015, WAPA notified DSW customers and interested parties by email of an informal meeting and posted this notice on its public website. On August 10, 2015, WAPA held an informal meeting to discuss DSW's rate proposals for transmission and ancillary services.

    2. WAPA published a Federal Register notice on February 3, 2016 (81 FR 5741), announcing the proposed formula rates, initiating the 90-day public consultation and comment period, setting forth the date and location of public information and public comment forums, and outlining the procedures for public participation.

    3. On February 4, 2016, WAPA sent DSW customers and interested parties a copy of the notice.

    4. On March 30, 2016, WAPA held a public information forum in Phoenix, Arizona. WAPA's DSW representatives explained the need for the formula rate adjustment and proposed changes to the formula rates, answered questions, and provided presentation handouts.

    5. On March 30, 2016, following the public information forum, WAPA held a public comment forum in Phoenix, Arizona, to provide customers and interested parties an opportunity to comment for the record.

    6. WAPA established a public website to post information about this rate adjustment. The website is located at https://www.wapa.gov/regions/DSW/Rates/Pages/ancillary-rates.aspx.

    Comments

    No oral comments were made at the public comment forum. WAPA received one written comment during the consultation and comment period. A written comment was received from Arizona Generation and Transmission Cooperatives, Benson, Arizona. The comment has been considered in preparing this Rate Order

    Project Descriptions

    WAPA's DSW provides ancillary services through WALC, which encompasses the projects within its marketing area—Boulder Canyon Project (BCP), Parker-Davis Project (P-DP), Central Arizona Project (CAP), and the Pacific Northwest-Pacific Southwest Intertie Project (Intertie). Network is offered on the P-DP, CAP, and Intertie.

    BCP

    Hoover Dam, authorized by the Boulder Canyon Project Act (45 Stat. 1057, December 21, 1928), sits on the Colorado River along the Arizona-Nevada border. Hoover Dam's power plant has 19 generating units (two for plant use) and an installed capacity of 2,078,800 kW (4,800 kW for plant use). High-voltage transmission lines and substations make it possible to deliver this power to southern Nevada, Arizona, and southern California.

    P-DP

    P-DP was formed by consolidating two projects, Davis Dam and Parker Dam, under terms of the Act of May 28, 1954 (68 Stat. 143). Davis Dam's power plant has five generating units and an installed capacity of 255,000 kW. Parker Dam's power plant has four generating units and an installed capacity of 120,000 kW. P-DP is operated in conjunction with the other Federal hydroelectric generation facilities in the Colorado River Basin. The project also includes 1,535 circuit miles of transmission lines in Arizona, southern Nevada, and along the Colorado River in California.

    CAP

    Congress authorized CAP in 1968 to improve water resources in the Colorado River Basin (43 U.S.C. 1501). The legislation also authorized Federal participation in the Navajo Generating Station, which has three coal-fired steam electric generating units with a combined capacity of 2,250,000 kW. The 24.3 percent Federal share (546,750 kW) of the Navajo Generating Station is used to power the pumps that move Colorado River water through the CAP canals.

    Intertie

    Intertie was authorized by Section 8 of the Pacific Northwest Power Marketing Act of August 31, 1964 (16 U.S.C. 837g). WAPA's portion of the Intertie consists of two parts, a northern portion and a southern portion. The northern portion is administered by WAPA's Sierra Nevada Region. The southern portion is administered by WAPA's DSW and consists of 865 circuit miles of extra high-voltage and 108 circuit miles of high-voltage transmission lines in Arizona, southern Nevada, and southern California.

    Existing and Provisional Formula Rates

    The existing formula rates contained in Rate Schedules PD-NTS3, INT-NTS3, DSW-SD3, DSW-RS3, DSW-FR3, DSW-EI3, DSW-SPR3, DSW-SUR3, and DSW-GI1 expire on September 30, 2016. Several of these rate schedules contain formula rates that are calculated each fiscal year to include the most recent financial, load, and schedule information, as applicable. The new rate schedules continue with this approach.

    Network

    The existing formula rates for Network on the P-DP and Intertie under Rate Schedules PD-NTS3 and INT-NTS3, respectively, are the following:

    EN25AU16.028

    The provisional formula rates for Network on the P-DP and Intertie under Rate Schedules PD-NTS4 and INT-NTS4 remain the same without adjustment.

    Transmission Losses

    Rate Schedule DSW-TL1 is a new schedule that consolidates the provisions for transmission losses. This rate schedule will supersede the existing losses provisions in the separate transmission rate schedules for each project. The current loss percentages and their application remain unchanged.

    Unreserved Use Penalties

    Rate Schedule DSW-UU1 is a new schedule that unifies and consolidates the penalty provisions for unreserved use. This rate schedule will supersede the existing unauthorized or unreserved use provisions in the separate transmission rate schedules for each project.

    Scheduling, System Control, and Dispatch

    The existing formula rate for this service under Rate Schedule DSW-SD3 is the following:

    EN25AU16.029

    The provisional formula rate for this service under Rate Schedule DSW-SD4 remains the same without adjustment.

    Reactive Supply and Voltage Control

    The existing formula rate for this service under Rate Schedule DSW-RS3 is the following:

    EN25AU16.030

    The provisional formula rate for this service under Rate Schedule DSW-RS4 remains the same without adjustment.

    Regulation and Frequency Response

    The existing formula rate for this service under Rate Schedule DSW-FR3 is the following:

    EN25AU16.031 Energy Imbalance

    The existing formula rate for this service under Rate Schedule DSW-EI3 is the following:

    Deviation bands Settlements On-Peak Hours Deviations less than or equal to ±1.5% (with a 4 MW minimum) of metered load 100% (no penalty). Deviations greater than ±1.5% up to 7.5% (or greater than 4 MW to 10 MW) of metered load 90% for over-deliveries and 110% for under-deliveries (10% penalty). Deviations greater than ±7.5% (or 10 MW) of metered load 75% for over-deliveries and 125% for under-deliveries (25% penalty). Off-Peak Hours Deviations less than or equal to +7.5% (with a 2 MW minimum) of metered load 60% for over-delivery (40% penalty). Deviations less than or equal to −3.0% (with a 5 MW minimum) of metered load 110% for under-delivery (10% penalty).

    The provisional formula rate for this service under Rate Schedule DSW-EI4 is the following

    Deviation bands Settlements On-Peak Hours No Changes No Changes. Off-Peak Hours Deviations less than or equal to ±1.5% (with a 4 MW minimum) of metered load 100% (no penalty). Deviations greater than ±1.5% up to 7.5% (or greater than 4 MW to 10 MW) of metered load 75% for over-deliveries (25% penalty), 110% for under-deliveries (10% penalty). Deviations greater than ±7.5% (or 10 MW) of metered load 60% for over-deliveries (40% penalty), 125% for under-deliveries (25% penalty). Operating Reserves—Spinning and Supplemental

    The existing formula rates for these services under Rate Schedules DSW-SPR3 and DSW-SUR3 are the following:

    EN25AU16.037

    The provisional formula rates for these services under Rate Schedules DSW-SPR4 and DSW-SUR4 remain the same without adjustment.

    Generator Imbalance

    The existing formula rate for this service under Rate Schedule DSW-GI1 is the following:

    Deviation bands Settlements On-Peak Hours Deviations less than or equal to ±1.5% (with a 4 MW minimum) of metered generation 100% (no penalty). Deviations greater than ±1.5% up to 7.5% (or greater than 4 MW to 10 MW) of metered generation 90% for over-deliveries and 110%, for under-deliveries (10% penalty). Deviations greater than ±7.5% (or 10 MW) of metered generation 75% for over-deliveries and 125%, for under-deliveries (25% penalty). Off-Peak Hours Deviations less than or equal to +7.5% (with a 2 MW minimum) of metered generation 60% for over-delivery (40% penalty). Deviations less than or equal to −3.0% (with a 5 MW minimum) of metered generation 110% for under-delivery (10% penalty).

    The provisional formula rate for this service under Rate Schedule DSW-GI2 is the following:

    Deviation bands Settlements On-Peak Hours No Changes No Changes. Off-Peak Hours Deviations less than or equal to ±1.5%, (with a 4 MW minimum) of metered generation 100% (no penalty). Deviations greater than ±1.5% up to 7.5% (or greater than 4 MW to 10 MW) of metered generation 75% for over-deliveries (25% penalty), 110% for under-deliveries (10% penalty). Deviations greater than ±7.5% (or 10 MW) of metered generation 60% for over-deliveries (40% penalty), 125% for under-deliveries (25% penalty). Certification of Rates

    WAPA's Administrator certified that the provisional formula rates for Network, transmission losses, unreserved use penalties, and ancillary services under Rate Schedules PD-NTS4, INT-NTS4, DSW-TL1, DSW-UU1, DSW-SD4, DSW-RS4, DSW-FR4, DSW-EI4, DSW-SPR4, DSW-SUR4, and DSW-GI2 result in the lowest possible rates consistent with sound business principles. The provisional formula rates were developed following administrative policies and applicable laws.

    Transmission Services Discussion Network

    DSW offers Network to eligible customers, subject to the provisions in WAPA's OATT, from the P-DP, Intertie, and CAP transmission systems. This service includes the transmission of energy to points of delivery on the P-DP, Intertie, and CAP interconnected high-voltage systems, which includes transmission lines, substations, communication equipment and related facilities. The provisional formula rates only apply to Network from the P-DP and Intertie transmission systems. The formula rate for Network from the CAP transmission system was approved under Rate Order No. WAPA-172 and became effective on January 1, 2016.2 The formula rate for Network from CAP is identical to the provisional formula rates for P-DP and Intertie.

    2 Rate Order No. WAPA-172 was approved by the Deputy Secretary of Energy on December 21, 2015, (80 FR 81310, December 29, 2015) and filed with FERC.

    The monthly charge for Network is the product of the customer's load-ratio share and one-twelfth (1/12) of the annual revenue requirement for the appropriate transmission system. The load-ratio share is equal to the customer's hourly load coincident with the monthly transmission system peak hour. The monthly transmission system peak hour occurs when the metered load for all network service customers is the greatest. The metered load and the transmission system load at the peak hour are averaged on a rolling 12-month basis (12-CP). No changes were made to the formula rates for Network.

    Transmission Losses

    WALC provides transmission losses to TSPs within its BA Area. Capacity and energy losses occur when a TSP delivers electricity over its transmission facilities for a customer. Losses are assessed for transactions on transmission facilities within WALC.

    A single loss percentage for WALC was developed in 2004 and applied to the P-DP, Intertie, and CAP transmission systems. The loss provisions contained in the transmission service rate schedules for each project have been consolidated into a new single rate schedule. No changes were made to the existing loss percentage or application. The transmission loss percentage currently in effect is posted on WALC's OASIS.

    Unreserved Use Penalties

    Unreserved use occurs when a customer uses transmission service it has not reserved or uses transmission service in excess of its reserved capacity. Unreserved use may also include a customer's failure to curtail transmission when requested.

    The penalty provisions for unreserved use in the transmission service rate schedules for each project have been unified and consolidated into a new single rate schedule. The penalty for a customer that engages in unreserved use is two times the maximum allowable firm point-to-point transmission rate for the service at issue, assessed as follows:

    (1) The penalty for one instance in a single hour is based on the daily short-term rate;

    (2) The penalty for more than one instance for any given duration (e.g., daily) increases to the next longest duration (e.g., weekly).

    A transmission customer is also required to pay for all ancillary services provided and associated with the unreserved use. The customer must pay for ancillary services based on the amount of transmission service it used and did not reserve.

    Ancillary Services Discussion

    In accordance with WAPA's OATT, ancillary services are needed with transmission service to maintain reliability inside and among the BA Areas affected by the transmission service. WAPA's DSW currently provides seven ancillary services under the OATT: (1) Scheduling, System Control and Dispatch; (2) Reactive Supply and Voltage Control; (3) Regulation and Frequency Response; (4) Energy Imbalance; (5) Spinning Reserve; (6) Supplemental Reserve; and (7) Generator Imbalance. The provisional formula rates for these services are designed to recover the costs incurred for providing each of the services.

    The first two ancillary services are defined by FERC as services that the TSP is required to provide directly, or indirectly by making arrangements with the BA, and the transmission customer is required to purchase. The remaining five ancillary services are services that the TSP (or the BA who performs the function for the TSP) must offer when transmission is used to serve load within the TSP's BA. The transmission customer must purchase these ancillary services from the TSP, acquire the services from a third party, or self-supply the services.

    Scheduling, System Control, and Dispatch

    This service is required to schedule the movement of power through, out of, within, or into a BA Area and must be provided by the BA in which the facilities used for transmission are located. WALC will provide this service for all transmission customers within its BA Area.

    The charge per schedule per day is calculated by dividing the annual costs associated with scheduling (numerator) by the number of schedules per year (denominator). The numerator includes the costs of transmission scheduling personnel, facilities, equipment, software, and other related costs involved in providing the service. The denominator is the yearly total of daily tags that result in a schedule, excluding schedules that return energy in kind. No changes were made to this formula rate.

    Reactive Supply and Voltage Control

    This service is required to maintain transmission voltages on DSW's transmission facilities within acceptable limits, using generation facilities and non-generation resources capable of producing (or absorbing) reactive power. This service must be provided for each transaction on the transmission facilities within the BA by the TSP (or the BA who performs this function for the TSP). WALC will perform this service for DSW's transmission system within its BA Area.

    The rate is calculated by dividing the annual revenue requirement for the service (numerator) by the transactions requiring the service (denominator). The numerator consists of the annual revenue requirement for generation multiplied by the percentage of resource capacity used for providing the service. That percentage is based on the nameplate power factor (one minus the power factor) for the generating units supplying service within WALC. The denominator consists of the transmission capacity of customers taking this service. No changes were made to this formula rate.

    Regulation and Frequency Response

    This service is necessary to provide for the continuous balancing of resources, generation and interchange with load, as well as for maintaining scheduled interconnection frequency at sixty cycles per second. The obligation to maintain this balance between resources and load lies with the TSP (or the BA who performs this function for the TSP). DSW (via WALC) must offer this service when transmission is used to serve load within its BA Area.

    The rate is calculated by dividing the annual revenue requirement for the service (numerator) by the sum of the load within WALC that requires the service and the generating capacity associated with variable energy resources (denominator). The numerator includes the annual costs associated with plant-in-service, operation and maintenance, purchases of regulation products, purchases of power to support WALC's ability to regulate, and other related costs involved in providing the service. The denominator consists of the load within WALC that requires this service plus the product of the installed nameplate capacity of solar and wind generators serving load within WALC and the applicable capacity multipliers.

    The denominator has been changed to include the application of capacity multipliers. Although variable energy resources have not yet impacted WALC, including the multipliers will allow the formula rate to more accurately recover potential future costs from customers by following cost causation principles. WAPA's DSW will set the multipliers at a value of one until variable energy resources begin to adversely impact WALC's regulation needs.

    Energy Imbalance

    This service is provided when differences occur between the scheduled and the actual delivery of energy to a load located within the BA Area over a single hour. DSW (via WALC) must offer this service when transmission is used to serve load within its BA Area.

    The charges for this service are based on a graduated bandwidth structure. The size of the deviation and whether the deviation occurs in on-peak or off-peak hours determines settlement. No changes were made to the deviation bands and settlements for on-peak hours. The bandwidth structure for off-peak hours was changed to consist of three deviation bands, similar to the on-peak structure. This aligns with FERC Order 890 guidelines with appropriate penalty adjustments for WALC operating conditions.

    Spinning Reserve

    This service is needed to serve load immediately in the event of a system contingency and may be provided by generating units that are on-line and loaded at less than maximum output. DSW (via WALC) must offer this service when transmission is used to serve load within its BA Area.

    WALC has no resources available to provide this service. DSW may obtain the service on a pass-through cost basis at market price plus an administrative fee. No changes were made to this formula rate.

    Supplemental Reserve

    This service is needed to serve load in the event of a system contingency. It is not available immediately to serve load but is generally available within a short period of time after a system contingency event. DSW (via WALC) must offer this service when transmission is used to serve load within its BA Area.

    WALC has no resources available to provide this service. DSW may obtain the service on a pass-through cost basis at market price plus an administrative fee. No changes were made to this formula rate.

    Generator Imbalance

    This service is provided when differences occur between the output of a generator located within the BA Area and a delivery schedule from that generator to another BA Area or a load within the TSP's BA Area over a single hour. DSW (via WALC) must offer this service, to the extent it is physically feasible to do so from its resources or from resources available to it, when transmission is used to deliver energy from a generator located within its BA Area.

    The charges for this service are based on a graduated bandwidth structure. The size of the deviation and whether the deviation occurs in on-peak or off-peak hours determines settlement. No changes were made to the deviation bands and settlements for on-peak hours. The bandwidth structure for off-peak hours was changed to consist of three deviation bands, similar to the on-peak structure. This aligns with FERC Order 890 guidelines with appropriate penalty adjustments for WALC operating conditions.

    Comments

    WAPA's DSW received one comment during the public consultation and comment period. The comment has been paraphrased where appropriate, without compromising the meaning of the comment.

    Comment: Customer supports the rates as developed but requests that WAPA clarify the obligation to update service agreements in line with the terms of WAPA's OATT. The customer also asks that WAPA clarify that the new rates and changes to underlying rate formulas constitute a change in formula, indicate to the Deputy Secretary what changes are required to the applicable service agreements, and notify WAPA's customers when the Deputy Secretary approves the rates on an interim basis.

    Response: Although WAPA believes its process is sufficiently clear, WAPA will consider clarifying the manner in which it updates service agreements as currently set forth in WAPA's OATT. However, review of WAPA's OATT language is outside the scope of this rate adjustment process. WAPA identifies in the Federal Register notice the new rate schedules and the changes that were made to the formula rates for ancillary services. WAPA will notify DSW customers when the Deputy Secretary approves the formula rates on an interim basis.

    Availability of Information

    All brochures, studies, comments, letters, memorandums and other documents used by WAPA's DSW to develop the provisional formula rates are available for inspection and copying at the Desert Southwest Regional Office, Western Area Power Administration, 615 South 43rd Avenue, Phoenix, Arizona. Many of these documents are available on WAPA's DSW website at: https://www.wapa.gov/regions/DSW/Rates/Pages/ancillary-rates.aspx.

    RATEMAKING PROCEDURE REQUIREMENTS Environmental Compliance

    In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969, 42 U.S.C. 4321-4347; the Council on Environmental Quality Regulations for implementing NEPA (40 CFR parts 1500-1508); and DOE NEPA Implementing Procedures and Guidelines (10 CFR part 1021), WAPA has determined that this action is categorically excluded from preparing an environmental assessment or an environmental impact statement.

    Determination Under Executive Order 12866

    WAPA has an exemption from centralized regulatory review under Executive Order 12866; accordingly, no clearance of this notice by the Office of Management and Budget is required.

    Submission to the FERC

    The formula rates herein confirmed, approved, and placed into effect on an interim basis, together with supporting documents, will be submitted to FERC for confirmation and final approval.

    ORDER

    In view of the foregoing and under the authority delegated to me, I confirm and approve on an interim basis, the formula rates under Rate Schedules PD-NTS4, INT-NTS4, DSW-TL1, DSW-UU1, DSW-SD4, DSW-RS4, DSW-FR4, DSW-EI4, DSW-SPR4, DSW-SUR4, and DSW-GI2. These rate schedules are effective the first full billing period on or after October 1, 2016, and will remain in effect through September 30, 2021, pending FERC's confirmation and approval of them or substitute formula rates on a final basis.

    Dated: August 18, 2016.

    Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall, Deputy Secretary of Energy.
    Rate Schedule PDP-NTS4 ATTACHMENT H to Tariff (Supersedes Schedule PDP-NTS3) UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY WESTERN AREA POWER ADMINISTRATION DESERT SOUTHWEST REGION Parker-Davis Project NETWORK INTEGRATION TRANSMISSION SERVICE Effective

    The first day of the first full billing period beginning on or after October 1, 2016, and will remain in effect through September 30, 2021, or until superseded.

    Applicable

    Transmission customers will compensate the Parker-Davis Project each month for Network Integration Transmission Service (Network) under the applicable Network Agreement and the formula rate described herein.

    Formula Rate EN25AU16.032

    Based on the formula rate, the Annual Transmission Revenue Requirement (ATRR) will be calculated for each fiscal year using updated financial data. The ATRR will be effective on October 1st of each year and posted on Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority's website.

    Rate Schedule INT-NTS4 ATTACHMENT H to Tariff (Supersedes Schedule INT-NTS3) UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY WESTERN AREA POWER ADMINISTRATION DESERT SOUTHWEST REGION Pacific Northwest-Pacific Southwest Intertie Project NETWORK INTEGRATION TRANSMISSION SERVICE Effective

    The first day of the first full billing period beginning on or after October 1, 2016, and will remain in effect through September 30, 2021, or until superseded.

    Applicable

    Transmission customers will compensate the Pacific Northwest-Pacific Southwest Intertie Project each month for Network Integration Transmission Service (Network) under the applicable Network Agreement and the formula rate described herein.

    Formula Rate EN25AU16.033

    Based on the formula rate, the Annual Transmission Revenue Requirement (ATRR) will be calculated for each fiscal year using updated financial data. The ATRR will be effective on October 1st of each year and posted on Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority's website.

    Rate Schedule DSW-TL1 UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY WESTERN AREA POWER ADMINISTRATION DESERT SOUTHWEST REGION Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority TRANSMISSION LOSSES SERVICE Effective

    The first day of the first full billing period beginning on or after October 1, 2016, and will remain in effect through September 30, 2021, or until superseded.

    Applicable

    Capacity and energy losses occur when a Transmission Service Provider (TSP) delivers electricity over its transmission facilities for a transmission customer. The Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority (WALC) provides this service to TSPs within its Balancing Authority Area. Transmission losses (losses) are assessed for transactions on transmission facilities within WALC, unless separate agreements specify the terms for losses. The losses applicable to Federal TSPs will be passed directly to transmission customers. The transmission customer must either purchase this service from WALC or make alternative comparable arrangements to satisfy their obligations for losses.

    Formula Rate

    The loss percentage currently in effect is posted on WALC's website and may be changed from time to time. Financial settlement for losses will occur on a monthly basis, unless determined by WALC. Proxy prices used to determine financial settlement will be derived from the Palo Verde electricity price indexes, or similar alternative, for on-peak and off-peak. This pricing information is posted on WALC's website.

    Rate Schedule DSW-UU1 SCHEDULE 10 to OATT UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY WESTERN AREA POWER ADMINISTRATION DESERT SOUTHWEST REGION Central Arizona Project Pacific Northwest-Pacific Southwest Intertie Project Parker-Davis Project UNRESERVED USE PENALTIES Effective

    The first day of the first full billing period beginning on or after October 1, 2016, and will remain in effect through September 30, 2021, or until superseded.

    Applicable

    Unreserved use occurs when a customer uses transmission service it has not reserved or uses transmission service in excess of its reserved capacity. Unreserved use may also include a transmission customer's failure to curtail transmission when requested. The transmission customer shall compensate the Federal Transmission Service Providers (TSP) each month for any unreserved use of the transmission system.

    Penalty Rate

    The charge for a transmission customer that engages in unreserved use is two times the maximum allowable firm point-to-point transmission rate for the service at issue, assessed as follows:

    (1) The penalty for one instance in a single hour is based on the daily rate;

    (2) The penalty for more than one instance for any given duration (e.g., daily) increases to the next longest duration (e.g., weekly).

    A transmission customer that exceeds its reserved capacity at any point of receipt or point of delivery, or a customer that uses transmission service at a point of receipt or point of delivery that it has not reserved, is required to pay for all ancillary services provided by the Federal TSP and associated with the unreserved use. The customer will pay for ancillary services based on the amount of transmission service it used and did not reserve.

    Rate Schedule DSW-SD4 SCHEDULE 1 to OATT (Supersedes Schedule DSW-SD3) UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY WESTERN AREA POWER ADMINISTRATION Desert Southwest Region and Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority SCHEDULING, SYSTEM CONTROL, AND DISPATCH SERVICE Effective

    The first day of the first full billing period beginning on or after October 1, 2016, and will remain in effect through September 30, 2021, or until superseded.

    Applicable

    Scheduling, System Control, and Dispatch Service is required to schedule the movement of power through, out of, within, or into the Balancing Authority Area (BA Area). This service can be provided only by the operator in which the transmission facilities used for transmission service are located. The Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority (WALC) performs this service for all Transmission Service Providers (TSPs) within its BA Area. The transmission customer must purchase this service, unless other arrangements are made with WALC.

    The charge will be applied to all schedules, except for schedules that return energy in kind to WALC. WALC will accept any number of scheduling changes during the day without additional charge. The charge will be allocated equally among all TSPs, both Federal and non-Federal, listed on schedules inside its BA Area. The Federal transmission segments of the schedule are exempt from invoicing since the costs for these segments are included in applicable transmission service rates.

    Formula Rate EN25AU16.034

    The charge per schedule per day is calculated by dividing the annual costs associated with scheduling (numerator) by the number of schedules per year (denominator). The numerator is the annual cost of transmission scheduling personnel, facilities, equipment, software, and other related costs involved in providing the service. The denominator is the yearly total of daily tags which result in a schedule, excluding schedules that return energy in kind.

    Based on the formula rate, the charge will be calculated each fiscal year using updated financial and schedule data. The charge will be effective on October 1st of each year and posted on WALC's website.

    Rate Schedule DSW-RS4 SCHEDULE 2 to OATT (Supersedes Schedule DSW-RS3) UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY WESTERN AREA POWER ADMINISTRATION Desert Southwest Region and Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority REACTIVE SUPPLY AND VOLTAGE CONTROL FROM GENERATION SOURCES OR OTHER SOURCES SERVICE Effective

    The first day of the first full billing period beginning on or after October 1, 2016, and will remain in effect through September 30, 2021, or until superseded.

    Applicable

    In order to maintain transmission voltages on the transmission facilities within acceptable limits, generation facilities and non-generation resources capable of providing Reactive Supply and Voltage Control (VAR Support Service) are operated to produce (or absorb) reactive power. This service must be provided for each transaction on the transmission facilities within the Balancing Authority (BA) by the Transmission Service Provider (TSP) or the BA who performs this function for the TSP.

    VAR Support Service will be provided by the Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority (WALC). Customers of a Federal TSP must purchase this service from WALC unless the transmission customer has generating resources capable of providing VARs directly to the Federal TSP and has executed a contract stipulating all the provisions of their self-supply. If WALC provides VAR Support Service on behalf of any non-Federal TSP, this service will be assessed on either the non-Federal TSP's reserved capacity or the scheduled quantity of the non-Federal TSP's customers.

    Formula Rate EN25AU16.035

    The numerator consists of the annual revenue requirement for generation multiplied by the percentage of resource capacity used for providing VAR Support Service. That percentage is based on the nameplate power factor (one minus the power factor) for the generating units supplying the service within WALC. The denominator consists of the transmission transactions within WALC that require this service.

    Based on the formula rate, the charge will be calculated each fiscal year using updated financial and reservation data. The charge will be effective on October 1st of each year and will be posted on WALC's website.

    Rate Schedule DSW-FR4 SCHEDULE 3 to OATT (Supersedes Schedule DSW-FR3) UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY WESTERN AREA POWER ADMINISTRATION Desert Southwest Region and Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority REGULATION AND FREQUENCY RESPONSE SERVICE Effective

    The first day of the first full billing period beginning on or after October 1, 2016, and will remain in effect through September 30, 2021, or until superseded.

    Applicable

    Regulation and Frequency Response Service (Regulation Service) is necessary to provide for the continuous balancing of resources, generation and interchange, with load, and for maintaining scheduled interconnection frequency at sixty cycles per second (60 Hz). The obligation to maintain this balance between resources and load lies with the Transmission Service Provider (TSP) or the Balancing Authority (BA) who performs this function for the TSP. The Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority (WALC) performs this function for the Federal TSPs and must offer this service when transmission is used to serve load within its Balancing Authority Area (BA Area). Non-Federal TSPs and customers of Federal TSPs must purchase Regulation Service from WALC or make alternative comparable arrangements to satisfy their regulation obligations.

    Formula Rate EN25AU16.036

    The numerator includes the annual costs associated with plant-in-service, operation and maintenance, purchase of regulation products, purchases of power to support WALC's ability to regulate, and other related costs involved in providing the service. The denominator consists of the load within WALC that requires this service plus the product of the installed nameplate capacity of solar and wind generators serving load within WALC and the applicable capacity multipliers.

    Based on the formula rate, the charge will be calculated each fiscal year using updated financial and load data. The charge will be effective on October 1st of each year and will be posted on WALC's website.

    Types of Assessments

    There are two different applications of this formula rate:

    1) A load-based assessment which is applicable to load within WALC (total metered load less Federal power allocation, including behind the meter generation rating, or if available, hourly data if generation is synchronized) and the installed nameplate capacity of all intermittent resources serving load within WALC.

    2) A self-provision assessment which allows entities with Automatic Generation Control (AGC) to self-provide for all or a portion of their loads. Entities with AGC are known as Sub-Balancing Authorities (SBA) and must meet all of the following criteria: (a) have a well-defined boundary, with WALC-approved revenue-quality metering, accurate as defined by the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC), to include Megawatt (MW) flow data availability at 6-second or smaller intervals; (b) have AGC responsive unit(s); (c) demonstrate Regulation Service capability; and (d) execute a contract with WALC, provide all requested data, and meet the SBA error criteria below.

    Self-provision is measured by use of the entity's 1-minute average Area Control Error (ACE) to determine the amount of self-provision. The ACE is used to calculate the Regulation Service charges every hour as follows:

    1) If the entity's 1-minute average ACE for the hour is less than or equal to 0.5 percent of its hourly average load, no charge is assessed for that hour.

    2) If the entity's 1-minute average ACE for the hour is greater than or equal to 1.5 percent of the entity's hourly average load, WALC assess charges using the hourly load-based assessment applied to the entity's peak load for that month.

    3) If the entity's 1-minute average ACE for the hour is greater than 0.5 percent but less than 1.5 percent of its hourly average load, WALC assesses charges based on linear interpolation of no charge and full charge, using the hourly load-based assessment applied to the entity's peak load for that month.

    WALC monitors the entity's self-provision on a regular basis. If WALC determines that the entity has not been attempting to self-regulate, WALC will, upon notification, employ the load-based assessment methodology described above. Alternative Arrangements

    Exporting Intermittent Resource Requirement: An entity that exports the output from an intermittent generator to another BA Area will be required to dynamically meter or dynamically schedule that resource out of WALC to another BA unless arrangements, satisfactory to WALC, are made for that entity to acquire this service from a third-party or self-supply (as outlined below). An intermittent generator is one whose output is volatile and variable due to factors beyond direct operational control and, therefore, is not dispatchable.

    Self- or Third-party Supply: WALC may allow an entity to supply some or all of its required regulation, or contract with a third party. This entity must have revenue quality metering at every load and generation point, with accuracy as defined by NERC, to include MW flow data availability at 6-second (or smaller) intervals. WALC will evaluate the entity's metering, telecommunications and regulating resource, as well as the required level of regulation, to determine whether the entity qualifies to self-supply under this provision. If approved, the entity is required to enter into a separate agreement with WALC which will specify the terms of self-supply.

    Customer Accommodation

    For entities unwilling to take Regulation Service, self-provide as described above, or obtain the service from a third party, WALC will assist the entity in dynamically metering its loads/resources to another BA. Until such time meter configuration is accomplished, the entity will be responsible for charges assessed under this schedule.

    Rate Schedule DSW-EI4 SCHEDULE 4 to OATT (Supersedes Schedule DSW-EI3) UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY WESTERN AREA POWER ADMINISTRATION Desert Southwest Region and Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority ENERGY IMBALANCE SERVICE Effective

    The first day of the first full billing period beginning on or after October 1, 2016, and will remain in effect through September 30, 2021, or until superseded.

    Applicable

    Energy Imbalance Service is provided when there is a difference between the scheduled and actual delivery of energy to a load located within a Balancing Authority Area (BA Area) over a single hour. The Transmission Service Provider (TSP) or the Balancing Authority (BA) who performs this function for the TSP must offer this service when transmission is used to serve load within its BA Area.

    The Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority (WALC) performs this function for the Federal TSP. Customers of a Federal TSP must purchase this service from WALC or make alternative comparable arrangements to satisfy their Energy Imbalance obligations. Non-Federal TSPs must have separate agreements with WALC that specify the terms of Energy Imbalance Service. WALC may charge a transmission customer for either energy imbalances under this schedule or generator imbalances under Schedule 9 for imbalances occurring during the same hour, but not both unless the imbalances aggravate rather than offset each other.

    Formula Rate

    Charges for energy imbalances are based on the deviation bands as follows:

    1. For deviations within ±1.5 percent (with a minimum of 4 MW) of the metered load, the settlement for on-peak and off-peak hours is 100 percent.

    2. For deviations greater than ±1.5 up to 7.5 percent (or greater than 4 MW up to 10 MW) of the metered load, the settlement for on-peak hours is 110 percent for under-delivery and 90 percent for over-delivery, and the settlement for off-peak hours is 110 percent for under-delivery and 75 percent for over-delivery.

    3. For deviations greater than ±7.5 percent (or 10 MW) of the metered load, the settlement for on-peak hours is 125 percent for under-delivery and 75 percent for over-delivery, and the settlement for off-peak hours is 125 percent for under-delivery and 60 percent for over-delivery.

    The deviation bands will be applied hourly and any energy imbalances that occur as a result of the transmission customer's scheduled transactions will be netted on a monthly basis and settled financially at the end of the month. For purposes of this schedule, the proxy prices used to determine financial settlement will be derived from the Palo Verde electricity price indexes, or similar alternative, for on-peak and off-peak. WALC may accept settlement in energy in lieu of financial settlement.

    During periods of BA operating constraints, WALC reserves the right to eliminate credits for over-delivery. The cost to WALC of any penalty assessed by a regulatory authority due to a violation of operating standards resulting from under or over-delivery of energy may be passed through to customers.

    Rate Schedule DSW-SPR4 SCHEDULE 5 to OATT (Supersedes Schedule DSW-SPR3) UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY WESTERN AREA POWER ADMINISTRATION Desert Southwest Region and Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority OPERATING RESERVE—SPINNING RESERVE SERVICE Effective

    The first day of the first full billing period beginning on or after October 1, 2016, and will remain in effect through September 30, 2021, or until superseded.

    Applicable

    Spinning Reserve Service is needed to serve load immediately in the event of a system contingency and may be provided by generating units that are on-line and loaded at less than maximum output. The Transmission Service Provider (TSP) or the Balancing Authority (BA) who performs this function for the TSP must offer this service when transmission is used to serve load within its BA Area.

    The Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority (WALC) performs this function for the Federal TSP. Customers of a Federal TSP must purchase this service from WALC or make alternative arrangements to satisfy their Spinning Reserve obligations.

    Formula Rate EN25AU16.038

    WALC has no Spinning Reserves available for sale. Upon request, WALC will purchase at market price and pass-through the cost plus an administrative fee that covers the cost of procuring and supplying Spinning Reserves. The customer will be responsible for providing the transmission needed to deliver the Spinning Reserves purchased.

    Rate Schedule DSW-SUR4 SCHEDULE 6 to OATT (Supersedes Schedule DSW-SPR3 UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY WESTERN AREA POWER ADMINISTRATION Desert Southwest Region and Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority OPERATING RESERVE—SUPPLEMENTAL RESERVE SERVICE Effective

    The first day of the first full billing period beginning on or after October 1, 2016, and will remain in effect through September 30, 2021, or until superseded.

    Applicable

    Supplemental Reserve Service is needed to serve load in the event of a system contingency. It is not available immediately to serve load but is generally available within a short period of time after a system contingency event. This service may be provided by generating units that are on-line but unloaded, by quick-start generation, or by interruptible load. The Transmission Service Provider (TSP) or the Balancing Authority (BA) who performs this function for the TSP must offer this service when transmission is used to serve load within its BA Area.

    The Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority (WALC) performs this function for the Federal TSP. Customers of a Federal TSP must purchase this service from WALC or make alternative arrangements to satisfy their Supplemental Reserve obligations.

    Formula Rate Cost of Service = Market Price + Administrative Fee

    WALC has no Supplemental Reserves for sale. Upon request, WALC will purchase at market price and pass-through the cost plus an administrative fee that covers the cost of procuring and supplying Supplemental Reserves. The customer will be responsible for providing the transmission needed to deliver.

    Rate Schedule DSW-GI2 SCHEDULE 9 to OATT (Supersedes Schedule DSW-GI1) UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY WESTERN AREA POWER ADMINISTRATION Desert Southwest Region and Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority GENERATOR IMBALANCE SERVICE Effective

    The first day of the first full billing period beginning on or after October 1, 2016, and will remain in effect through September 30, 2021, or until superseded.

    Applicable

    Generator Imbalance Service is provided when a difference occurs between the output of a generator located in the Balancing Authority Area (BA Area) and the delivery schedule from that generator to another BA Area or a load within the Transmission Service Provider's (TSP) BA Area over a single hour. The TSP or the Balancing Authority (BA) who performs this function for the TSP must offer this service, to the extent it is physically feasible to do so from its resources or from resources available to it, when transmission is used to deliver energy from a generator located within its BA Area.

    The Western Area Lower Colorado Balancing Authority (WALC) performs this function for the Federal TSP. Customers of a Federal TSP must purchase this service from WALC or make alternative comparable arrangements to satisfy their Generator Imbalance obligations. Non-Federal TSPs must have separate agreements with WALC that specify the terms of Generator Imbalance Service. An intermittent resource serving load outside WALC will be required to dynamically schedule or dynamically meter their generation to another BA Area unless arrangements, satisfactory to WALC, are made to acquire this service from a third-party. An intermittent resource, for the limited purpose of this schedule, is an electric generator that is not dispatchable and cannot store its fuel source, and therefore cannot respond to changes in demand or respond to transmission security constraints.

    WALC may charge a transmission customer for either generator imbalances under this schedule or energy imbalances under Schedule 4 for imbalances occurring during the same hour, but not both unless the imbalances aggravate rather than offset each other.

    Formula Rate

    Charges for generator imbalances are based on the deviation bands as follows:

    1. For deviations within ±1.5 percent (with a minimum of 4 MW) of the metered generation, the settlement for on-peak and off-peak hours is 100 percent.

    2. For deviations greater than ±1.5 up to 7.5 percent (or greater than 4 MW up to 10 MW) of the metered generation, the settlement for on-peak hours is 110 percent for under-delivery and 90 percent for over-delivery, and the settlement for off-peak hours is 110 percent for under-delivery and 75 percent for over-delivery.

    3. For deviations greater than ±7.5 percent (or 10 MW) of the metered generation, the settlement for on-peak hours is 125 percent for under-delivery and 75 percent for over-delivery, and the settlement for off-peak hours is 125 percent for under-delivery and 60 percent for over-delivery. An intermittent resource will be exempt from this deviation band but will be subject to the settlement provisions in the second deviation band for all deviations greater than ±7.5 percent (or 10 MW).

    The deviation bands will be applied hourly and any generator imbalances that occur as a result of the transmission customer's scheduled transactions will be netted on a monthly basis and settled financially at the end of the month. For purposes of this schedule, the proxy prices used to determine financial settlement will be derived from the Palo Verde electricity price indexes, or similar alternative, for on-peak and off-peak. WALC may accept settlement in energy in lieu of financial settlement.

    During periods of BA operating constraints, WALC reserves the right to eliminate credits for over-delivery. The cost to WALC of any penalty assessed by a regulatory authority due to a violation of operating standards resulting from under or over-delivery of energy may be passed through to customers.

    [FR Doc. 2016-20397 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450-01-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [EPA-HQ-OLEM-2016-0465, FRL-9951-43-OLEM] Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Information Requirements for Boilers and Industrial Furnaces AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is planning to submit the information collection request (ICR), Information Requirements for Boilers and Industrial Furnaces (EPA ICR No. 1361.17, OMB Control No. 2050-0073) to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and approval in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.). Before doing so, the EPA is soliciting public comments on specific aspects of the proposed information collection as described below. This is a proposed extension of the ICR, which is currently approved through December 31, 2016. An Agency may not conduct or sponsor and a person is not required to respond to a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

    DATES:

    Comments must be submitted on or before October 24, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, referencing by Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OLEM-2016-0465, online using www.regulations.gov (our preferred method), by email to [email protected], or by mail to: EPA Docket Center, Environmental Protection Agency, Mail Code 28221T, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460.

    EPA's policy is that all comments received will be included in the public docket without change including any personal information provided, unless the comment includes profanity, threats, information claimed to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Peggy Vyas, Office of Resource Conservation and Recovery (mail code 5303P), Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460; telephone number: 703-308-5477; fax number: 703-308-8433; email address: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Supporting documents which explain in detail the information the EPA will be collecting are available in the public docket for this ICR. The docket can be viewed online at www.regulations.gov or in person at the EPA Docket Center, WJC West, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC. The telephone number for the Docket Center is 202-566-1744. For additional information about EPA's public docket, visit http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

    Pursuant to section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the PRA, the EPA is soliciting comments and information to enable it to: (i) Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (ii) evaluate the accuracy of the Agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (iii) enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (iv) minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses. The EPA will consider the comments received and amend the ICR as appropriate. The final ICR package will then be submitted to OMB for review and approval. At that time, the EPA will issue another Federal Register notice to announce the submission of the ICR to OMB and the opportunity to submit additional comments to OMB.

    Abstract: EPA regulates the burning of hazardous waste in boilers, incinerators, and industrial furnaces (BIFs) under 40 CFR parts 63, 264, 265, 266 and 270. This ICR describes the paperwork requirements that apply to the owners and operators of BIFs. This includes the general facility requirements at 40 CFR parts 264 and 265, subparts B thru H; the requirements applicable to BIF units at 40 CFR part 266; and the RCRA Part B permit application and modification requirements at 40 CFR part 270.

    Form Numbers: None.

    Respondents/affected entities: Business or other for-profit.

    Respondent's obligation to respond: Mandatory (per 40 CFR 264, 265, and 270).

    Estimated number of respondents: 114.

    Frequency of response: On occasion.

    Total estimated burden: 291,757 hours per year. Burden is defined at 5 CFR 1320.03(b).

    Total estimated cost: $21,004,550, which includes $9,839,942 annualized labor costs and $11,164,608 annualized capital or O&M costs.

    Changes in Estimates: The burden hours are likely to stay substantially the same.

    Dated: August 17, 2016. Barnes Johnson, Director, Office of Resource Conservation and Recovery.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20321 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [FRL-9951-35-OA] Meeting of the Local Government Advisory Committee AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Local Government Advisory Committee's (LGAC) Protecting America's Waters Workgroup is seeking input on the LGAC's Charge from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to give advice and recommendations to the Administrator to inform the development of a National Action Plan for Drinking Water (Action Plan). The LGAC will provide their final recommendations to the EPA Administrator during the autumn of 2016.

    EPA is committed to working with government partners, communities, and stakeholders to strengthen the nations drinking water systems. The LGAC Protecting America's Waters Workgroup will have a series of meetings to hear from local elected and appointed officials. These meetings will be held on Wednesday, September 7th, 2016 at 4:30-5:30 EDT; and Wednesday, September 21st, 4:30-5:30 EDT via teleconference. The focus of the workgroup meeting is to hear from local officials on issues of concern related to LGAC's Charge (included below).

    The Workgroup will consider the following:

    Advancing Next Generation Safe Drinking Water Act Implementation: Identify key opportunities for federal, state, tribal and local government to work together to implementation of Safe Drinking Water Act regulations and programs, including ways to increase communication and public awareness and accountability.

    Addressing Environmental Justice and Equity in Infrastructure Funding: Identify ways in which federal, state, tribal and local governments, and utilities can work together to ensure that drinking water infrastructure challenges of low-income environmental justice communities and small systems are being appropriately prioritized and addressed, including through increased information, sharing and replicating best practices, and building community capacity.

    Strengthening Protections against Lead in Drinking Water: Identify opportunities to coordinate and collaborate on implementing the current Lead and Copper Rule, particularly in environmental justice communities and expand and strengthen opportunities for stakeholder engagement to support the development of a revised rule.

    Emerging and Unregulated Contaminant Strategies: Develop and implement improved approaches through which EPA, state, tribal and local governments, utilities and other stakeholders can work together to prioritize and address the challenges posed by emerging and unregulated contaminants such as algal toxins and perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) and increasing public awareness, especially in vulnerable populations.

    • The Workgroup is also interested in information on how public and private sector partnerships have advanced economic solutions; where source water protection saved taxpayers' dollars; and where communities have created jobs and produced public savings by ensuring clean and healthy water infrastructure.

    This is an open meeting and state, local and tribal officials are invited to participate. The Workgroup will hear comments from state, local and tribal officials and the public between 4:45 p.m.-5:15 p.m. on Wednesday, September 7, 2016 and Wednesday, September 21, 2016. Individuals or organizations wishing to address the workgroup will be allowed a maximum of five minutes to present their point of view. Also, written comments are encouraged and may be submitted electronically to [email protected]

    Please contact the Designated Federal Officer (DFO) at the number listed below to schedule comment time. Time will be allotted on a first-come first-serve basis. If you are interested in participating in this or subsequent meetings of the workgroup, details will be posted when they are available at: https://www.epa.gov/ocir/local-government-advisory-committee-lgac. Comments submitted to the workgroup are solely for the Workgroup's consideration.

    ADDRESSES:

    The LGAC Protecting America's Waters Workgroup meeting will be held via teleconference. The Workgroup's meeting summary will be available after the meeting online at: https://www.epa.gov/ocir/local-government-advisory-committee-lgac and can be obtained by written request to the DFO.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Frances Eargle, the Designated Federal Officer for the Local Government Advisory Committee (LGAC) at (202) 564-3115 or email at [email protected]

    Information on Services for Those With Disabilities: For information on access or services for individuals with disabilities, please contact Frances Eargle at (202) 564-3115 or [email protected] To request accommodation of a disability, please request 2 days prior to the meeting, to give EPA as much time as possible to process your request.

    Dated: August 19, 2016. Jack Bowles, Director, State and Local, Office of Congressional and Intergovernmental Relations.
    [FR Doc. 2016-20408 Filed 8-24-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    FEDERAL MARITIME COMMISSION Notice of Agreements Filed

    The Commission hereby gives notice of the filing of the following agreements under the Shipping Act of 1984. Interested parties may submit comments on the agreements to the Secretary, Federal Maritime Commission, Washington, DC 20573, within twelve days of the date