Federal Register Vol. 81, No.221,

Federal Register Volume 81, Issue 221 (November 16, 2016)

Page Range80563-80988
FR Document

81_FR_221
Current View
Page and SubjectPDF
81 FR 80987 - National Apprenticeship Week, 2016PDF
81 FR 80985 - Get Smart About Antibiotics Week, 2016PDF
81 FR 80983 - American Education Week, 2016PDF
81 FR 80688 - Response of Nuclear Power Plant Instrumentation Cables When Exposed to Fire Conditions-Test PlanPDF
81 FR 80664 - Environmental Impact Statements; Notice of AvailabilityPDF
81 FR 80686 - Sunshine Act MeetingsPDF
81 FR 80592 - Stream Protection Rule; Final Environmental Impact StatementPDF
81 FR 80706 - Sunshine Act MeetingPDF
81 FR 80660 - Sunshine Act Meeting NoticePDF
81 FR 80664 - Sunshine Act MeetingsPDF
81 FR 80637 - Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Order, Finding, or Suspended Investigation; Advance Notification of Sunset ReviewsPDF
81 FR 80635 - Foreign-Trade Zone 61-San Juan, Puerto Rico; Application for Subzone; Aceros de América, Inc.; San Juan, Puerto RicoPDF
81 FR 80676 - The President's National Security Telecommunications Advisory CommitteePDF
81 FR 80634 - Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) 122-Corpus Christi, Texas; Notification of Proposed Production Activity; voestalpine Texas, LLC (Hot Briquetted Iron By-Products); Portland, TexasPDF
81 FR 80635 - Approval of Subzone Status; ASICS America Corporation; Byhalia, MississippiPDF
81 FR 80635 - Approval of Expansion of Subzone 92B; Huntington Ingalls Industries; Pascagoula, MississippiPDF
81 FR 80675 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; FEMA Preparedness Grants: Tribal Homeland Security Grant Program (THSGP)PDF
81 FR 80641 - Smart Technologies Trade Mission to Taiwan and Hong Kong With an Optional Stop in Guangzhou (China)PDF
81 FR 80717 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Revision of an Approved Information Collection; Comment Request; Company-Run Annual Stress Test Reporting Template and Documentation for Covered Institutions With Total Consolidated Assets of $50 Billion or More Under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection ActPDF
81 FR 80675 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; FEMA Preparedness Grants: Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI) Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP)PDF
81 FR 80707 - Delegation to the Assistant Secretary for Political-Military Affairs of Authority To Concur With the Secretary of Defense on Certain ActionsPDF
81 FR 80608 - Department of the Treasury Acquisition Regulations; Incremental Funding of Fixed-Price, Time-and-Material or Labor-Hour Contracts During a Continuing ResolutionPDF
81 FR 80624 - Addition of Nonylphenol Ethoxylates Category; Community Right-To-Know Toxic Chemical Release ReportingPDF
81 FR 80662 - Certain New Chemicals or Significant New Uses; Statements of Findings for October 2016PDF
81 FR 80707 - Generalized System of Preferences: Import Statistics Relating to Competitive Need LimitationsPDF
81 FR 80593 - Allocations of Cross-State Air Pollution Rule Allowances From New Unit Set-Asides for the 2016 Compliance YearPDF
81 FR 80677 - Meeting: Homeland Security Advisory CouncilPDF
81 FR 80686 - Notice of Lodging of Proposed Consent Decree Under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability ActPDF
81 FR 80669 - Notice of Adoption of Policy Statement on Historic Preservation and Community RevitalizationPDF
81 FR 80632 - Federal Economic Statistics Advisory CommitteePDF
81 FR 80633 - Federal Economic Statistics Advisory Committee MeetingPDF
81 FR 80719 - Mutual to Stock Conversion; Community Savings, Caldwell, Ohio; Approval of Conversion ApplicationPDF
81 FR 80720 - Notification of Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee November 17, 2016, Public MeetingPDF
81 FR 80653 - Environmental Management Site-Specific Advisory Board, HanfordPDF
81 FR 80563 - Chief Compliance Officer Annual Report Requirements for Futures Commission Merchants, Swap Dealers, and Major Swap Participants; Amendments to Filing DatesPDF
81 FR 80716 - Advisory Board; Notice of MeetingPDF
81 FR 80610 - Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pacific Cod in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management AreaPDF
81 FR 80713 - National Railroad Passenger Corporation's (Amtrak) Request for Positive Train Control Safety Plan (PTCSP) Approval and System CertificationPDF
81 FR 80714 - Proposed Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 80640 - Certain Small Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line, and Pressure Pipe (Under 41/2PDF
81 FR 80635 - Certain Large Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line, and Pressure Pipe (Over 41/2PDF
81 FR 80638 - Carbon and Certain Alloy Steel Wire Rod From Mexico: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2014-2015PDF
81 FR 80587 - Section 707 Regarding Disguised Sales, Generally; CorrectionPDF
81 FR 80687 - Advisory Committee for Computer and Information Science and Engineering; Notice of MeetingPDF
81 FR 80652 - Orders Granting Authority To Import and Export Natural Gas, To Import and Export Liquefied Natural Gas, and Vacating Prior Authority During September 2016PDF
81 FR 80653 - Proposed Subsequent ArrangementPDF
81 FR 80650 - Judicial Proceedings Since Fiscal Year 2012 Amendments Panel (Judicial Proceedings Panel); Notice of Federal Advisory Committee MeetingPDF
81 FR 80710 - Application From the State of Utah to the Surface Transportation Project Delivery Program and Proposed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) Assigning Environmental Responsibilities to the StatePDF
81 FR 80631 - Nutrition Facts Label CompliancePDF
81 FR 80687 - Research Performance Progress ReportPDF
81 FR 80712 - FAST Act Section 1422 Study on Performance of BridgesPDF
81 FR 80708 - Renewal Package From the State of California to the Surface Transportation Project Delivery Program and Proposed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) Assigning Environmental Responsibilities to the StatePDF
81 FR 80679 - Information Collection Activities: Sulfur Operations; Submitted for Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Review; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 80633 - Submission for OMB Review; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 80649 - North Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public MeetingPDF
81 FR 80621 - Safety Zone; Vigor Industrial Drydock Movement, West Duwamish Waterway; Seattle, WAPDF
81 FR 80664 - Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response (OPHPR) Board of Scientific Counselors, Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response, (BSC, OPHPR)PDF
81 FR 80665 - Advisory Council for the Elimination of Tuberculosis Meeting (ACET)PDF
81 FR 80651 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Common Core of Data (CCD) School-Level Finance Survey (SLFS) 2016-2018PDF
81 FR 80719 - Submission for OMB Review; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 80720 - Agency Information Collection Activity Under OMB Review: (Ischemic Heart Disease (IHD) Disability Benefits Questionnaire (VA Form 21-0960A-1), Hairy Cell and Other B-Cell Leukemia Disability Benefits Questionnaire (VA Form 21-0960B-1), and Parkinson's Disease Disability Benefits Questionnaire (VA Form 21-0960C-1))PDF
81 FR 80655 - Tesoro Great Plains Gathering & Marketing LLC; Notice of Request for Temporary WaiverPDF
81 FR 80655 - Combined Notice of Filings #2PDF
81 FR 80660 - Combined Notice of Filings #1PDF
81 FR 80654 - Combined Notice of FilingsPDF
81 FR 80656 - Combined Notice of FilingsPDF
81 FR 80657 - SR South Loving LLC; Supplemental Notice That Initial Market-Based Rate Filing Includes Request for Blanket Section 204 AuthorizationPDF
81 FR 80660 - Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corporation; Tucson Electric Power Company; UNS Electric, Inc.; UniSource Energy Development Company; Notice of Institution of Section 206 Proceeding and Refund Effective DatePDF
81 FR 80659 - Combined Notice of Filings #1PDF
81 FR 80594 - Medicare and Medicaid Programs; Emergency Preparedness Requirements for Medicare and Medicaid Participating Providers and Suppliers; CorrectionPDF
81 FR 80683 - Welded Stainless Steel Pressure Pipe From IndiaPDF
81 FR 80637 - Export Trade Certificate of ReviewPDF
81 FR 80643 - Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Meeting of the Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Advisory PanelPDF
81 FR 80701 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; The NASDAQ Stock Market LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change To Amend the NBBO ProgramPDF
81 FR 80689 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; Chicago Board Options Exchange, Incorporated; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change To Amend the Fees SchedulePDF
81 FR 80703 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NYSE Arca, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change To Temporarily Widen Price Collar Thresholds for the Core Open Auction and Trading Halt AuctionsPDF
81 FR 80694 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NASDAQ PHLX LLC; Notice of Filing of Partial Amendment No. 2 and Order Granting Approval of a Proposed Rule Change, as Modified by Partial Amendment No. 2, To Amend PHLX Rule 1017, Openings in OptionsPDF
81 FR 80705 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; Bats EDGX Exchange, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change to Fees for Use of the Exchange's Equity Options PlatformPDF
81 FR 80691 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; Miami International Securities Exchange LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change To Amend Exchange Rule 519A, Risk Protection MonitorPDF
81 FR 80646 - Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Exempted Fishing, Scientific Research, Display, Shark Research Fishery, and Chartering Permits; Letters of AcknowledgmentPDF
81 FR 80645 - Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Large Pelagic Fishing SurveyPDF
81 FR 80644 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to the Elliot Bay Seawall Project in Seattle, WashingtonPDF
81 FR 80667 - Office of the Director, National Institutes of Health; Notice of MeetingPDF
81 FR 80668 - National Institute of Dental & Craniofacial Research; Notice of Closed MeetingPDF
81 FR 80668 - Center for Scientific Review; Notice of Closed MeetingPDF
81 FR 80667 - Center for Scientific Review; Notice of Closed MeetingsPDF
81 FR 80684 - Commerce in Explosives; 2016 Annual List of Explosive MaterialsPDF
81 FR 80721 - Veterans' Advisory Committee on Rehabilitation; Notice of MeetingPDF
81 FR 80567 - Refuse To Accept Procedures for Premarket Tobacco Product Submissions; WithdrawalPDF
81 FR 80665 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment RequestPDF
81 FR 80666 - Site Visit Training Program for Office of Pharmaceutical Quality Staff; Information Available to IndustryPDF
81 FR 80656 - Essential Power Massachusetts, LLC; Nautilus Hydro, LLC; Notice of Application for Transfer of License and Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and ProtestsPDF
81 FR 80656 - South Carolina Public Service Authority; Notice of Application Accepted for Filing and Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and ProtestsPDF
81 FR 80658 - Texas Eastern Transmission, LP; Notice of ApplicationPDF
81 FR 80654 - PennEast Pipeline Company, LLC; Notice of Revised Schedule for Environmental Review of the PennEast Pipeline ProjectPDF
81 FR 80654 - Kinetica Energy Express, LLC; Notice of Technical ConferencePDF
81 FR 80662 - Kaukauna Utilities; Notice of Intent To File License Application, Filing of Pre-Application Document, and Approving Use of the Traditional Licensing ProcessPDF
81 FR 80682 - Recent Trends in U.S. Services Trade, 2017 Annual ReportPDF
81 FR 80689 - New Postal ProductPDF
81 FR 80618 - Proposed Establishment of Class E Airspace; Wessington Springs, SDPDF
81 FR 80620 - Proposed Establishment of Class E Airspace, Denver, COPDF
81 FR 80587 - Oil and Gas and Sulfur Operations in the Outer Continental Shelf-Decommissioning Costs for PipelinesPDF
81 FR 80612 - Safeguarding of Restricted Data by Access PermitteesPDF
81 FR 80629 - Protective Regulations for Hawaiian Spinner Dolphins Under the Marine Mammal Protection Act; Reopening of Public Comment PeriodPDF
81 FR 80567 - Establishing a More Effective Fair Market Rent System; Using Small Area Fair Market Rents in the Housing Choice Voucher Program Instead of the Current 50th Percentile FMRsPDF
81 FR 80678 - Small Area Fair Market Rents in Housing Choice Voucher Program Values for Selection Criteria and Metropolitan Areas Subject to Small Area Fair Market RentsPDF
81 FR 80724 - Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013: Implementation in HUD Housing ProgramsPDF
81 FR 80828 - Renewables Enhancement and Growth Support RulePDF
81 FR 80594 - Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991PDF

Issue

81 221 Wednesday, November 16, 2016 Contents Agriculture Agriculture Department See

Food Safety and Inspection Service

Alcohol Tobacco Firearms Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives Bureau NOTICES Commerce in Explosives: 2016 Annual List of Explosive Materials, 80684-80686 2016-27459 Safety Enviromental Enforcement Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement RULES Oil and Gas and Sulfur Operations on the Outer Continental Shelf: Decommissioning Costs for Pipelines, 80587-80592 2016-27416 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Sulfur Operations, 80679-80682 2016-27501 Census Bureau Census Bureau NOTICES Charter Renewals: Federal Economic Statistics Advisory Committee, 80632-80633 2016-27534 Meetings: Federal Economic Statistics Advisory Committee, 80633 2016-27533 Centers Disease Centers for Disease Control and Prevention NOTICES Meetings: Advisory Council for the Elimination of Tuberculosis, 80665 2016-27492 Board of Scientific Counselors, Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response, 80664-80665 2016-27493 Centers Medicare Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services RULES Medicare and Medicaid Programs: Emergency Preparedness Requirements for Medicare and Medicaid Participating Providers and Suppliers; Correction, 80594 2016-27478 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 80665-80666 2016-27455 Coast Guard Coast Guard PROPOSED RULES Safety Zones: Vigor Industrial Drydock Movement, West Duwamish Waterway; Seattle, WA, 80621-80624 2016-27494 Commerce Commerce Department See

Census Bureau

See

Foreign-Trade Zones Board

See

International Trade Administration

See

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 80633-80634 2016-27499
Commodity Futures Commodity Futures Trading Commission RULES Chief Compliance Officer Annual Report Requirements for Futures Commission Merchants, Swap Dealers, and Major Swap Participants: Filing Dates, 80563-80567 2016-27525 Comptroller Comptroller of the Currency NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Company-Run Annual Stress Test Reporting Template and Documentation for Covered Institutions with Total Consolidated Assets of $50 Billion or More, 80717-80719 2016-27555 Conversion Applications; Approvals: Community Savings, Caldwell, OH, 80719 2016-27528 Defense Department Defense Department NOTICES Meetings: Judicial Proceedings Since Fiscal Year 2012 Amendments Panel, 80650-80651 2016-27508 Education Department Education Department NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Common Core of Data School-Level Finance Survey 2016-2018, 80651-80652 2016-27491 Energy Department Energy Department See

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

PROPOSED RULES Safeguarding of Restricted Data by Access Permittees, 80612-80618 2016-27414 NOTICES Authorizations to Export and Import Liquefied Natural Gas: Bluewater Gas Storage, LLC, et al., 80652-80653 2016-27512 Meetings: Environmental Management Site-Specific Advisory Board, Hanford, 80653-80654 2016-27526 Proposed Subsequent Arrangement, 80653 2016-27509 2016-27511
Environmental Protection Environmental Protection Agency RULES Allocations of Cross-State Air Pollution Rule Allowances from New Unit Set-Asides for the 2016 Compliance Year, 80593 2016-27541 PROPOSED RULES Addition of Nonylphenol Ethoxylates Category: Community Right-to-Know Toxic Chemical Release Reporting, 80624-80629 2016-27547 Renewables Enhancement and Growth Support Rule, 80828-80980 2016-25292 NOTICES Certain New Chemicals: Statements of Findings for October 2016, 80662-80664 2016-27545 Environmental Impact Statements; Availability, etc.; Weekly Receipts, 80664 2016-27700 Federal Aviation Federal Aviation Administration PROPOSED RULES Establishment of Class E Airspace: Denver, CO, 80620-80621 2016-27437 Wessington Springs, SD, 80618-80620 2016-27438 Federal Communications Federal Communications Commission RULES Telephone Consumer Protection Act, 80594-80608 2016-24745 Federal Election Federal Election Commission NOTICES Meetings; Sunshine Act, 80664 2016-27621 Federal Emergency Federal Emergency Management Agency NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Preparedness Grants—Tribal Homeland Security Grant Program, 80675-80676 2016-27557 Preparedness Grants—Urban Areas Security Initiative Nonprofit Security Grant Program, 80675 2016-27554 Federal Energy Federal Energy Regulatory Commission NOTICES Applications: Kaukauna Utilities, 80662 2016-27448 South Carolina Public Service Authority, 80656-80657 2016-27452 Texas Eastern Transmission, LP, 80658-80659 2016-27451 Combined Filings, 80654-80656, 80659-80660 2016-27479 2016-27482 2016-27483 2016-27484 2016-27485 Environmental Impact Statements; Availability, etc.: PennEast Pipeline Company, LLC, 80654 2016-27450 Initial Market-Based Rate Filings Including Requests for Blanket Section 204 Authorizations: SR South Loving LLC, 80657-80658 2016-27481 License Transfer Applications: Essential Power Massachusetts, LLC, Nautilus Hydro, LLC, 80656 2016-27453 Meetings: Kinetica Energy Express, LLC; Technical Conference, 80654 2016-27449 Meetings; Sunshine Act, 80660-80662 2016-27625 Refund Effective Dates: Central Hudson Gas and Electric Corp., Tucson Electric Power Co., UNS Electric, Inc., UniSource Energy Development Co., 80660 2016-27480 Requests for Waivers: Tesoro Great Plains Gathering and Marketing LLC, 80655-80656 2016-27486 Federal Highway Federal Highway Administration NOTICES Fixing America's Surface Transportation Act: Study on Performance of Bridges, 80712-80713 2016-27504 Surface Transportation Project Delivery Program: Renewal Package from the State of California; Proposed Memorandum of Understanding Assigning Environmental Responsibilities to the State, 80708-80710 2016-27502 State of Utah; Application, 80710-80712 2016-27507 Federal Railroad Federal Railroad Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 80714-80716 2016-27521 Positive Train Control Safety Plan Approval and System Certification: National Railroad Passenger Corporation—Amtrak, 80713-80714 2016-27522 Food and Drug Food and Drug Administration RULES Refuse to Accept Procedures for Premarket Tobacco Product Submissions; Withdrawal, 80567 2016-27456 NOTICES Site Visit Training Program for Office of Pharmaceutical Quality Staff, 80666-80667 2016-27454 Food Safety Food Safety and Inspection Service NOTICES Nutrition Facts Label Compliance, 80631-80632 2016-27506 Foreign Trade Foreign-Trade Zones Board NOTICES Proposed Production Activities: voestalpine Texas, LLC, Foreign-Trade Zone 122, Corpus Christi, TX, 80634-80635 2016-27571 Subzone Applications: Aceros de America, Inc., Foreign-Trade Zone 61, San Juan, PR, 80635 2016-27574 Subzone Approvals: ASICS America Corp., Byhalia, MS, 80635 2016-27570 Subzone Expansion; Applications: Huntington Ingalls Industries, Subzone 92B, Pascagoula, MS, 80635 2016-27568 Health and Human Health and Human Services Department See

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

See

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

See

Food and Drug Administration

See

National Institutes of Health

Historic Historic Preservation, Advisory Council NOTICES Policy Statements: Historic Preservation and Community Revitalization, 80669-80675 2016-27536 Homeland Homeland Security Department See

Coast Guard

See

Federal Emergency Management Agency

NOTICES Meetings: Homeland Security Advisory Council, 80677-80678 2016-27539 The President's National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee, 80676-80677 2016-27572
Housing Housing and Urban Development Department RULES Establishing a More Effective Fair Market Rent System; Using Small Area Fair Market Rents in the Housing Choice Voucher Program Instead of the Current 50th Percentile FMRs, 80567-80587 2016-27114 Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013: Implementation in HUD Housing Programs, 80724-80825 2016-25888 NOTICES Small Area Fair Market Rents in Housing Choice Voucher Program Values for Selection Criteria and Metropolitan Areas Subject to Small Area Fair Market Rents, 80678-80679 2016-27112 Interior Interior Department See

Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement

See

Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement Office

Internal Revenue Internal Revenue Service RULES Section 707 Regarding Disguised Sales, Generally; Correction, 80587 2016-27515 International Trade Adm International Trade Administration NOTICES Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Carbon and Certain Alloy Steel Wire Rod from Mexico, 80638-80640 2016-27518 Certain Large Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line, and Pressure Pipe (Over 4.5 Inches) from Japan, 80635-80637 2016-27519 Certain Small Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line, and Pressure Pipe (Under 4.5 Inches) from Japan, 80640-80641 2016-27520 Sunset Reviews, 80637-80638 2016-27582 Export Trade Certificates of Review, 80637 2016-27475 Trade Missions: Smart Technologies; Taiwan and Hong Kong with an Optional Stop in Guangzhou China, 80641-80643 2016-27556 International Trade Com International Trade Commission NOTICES Investigations; Determinations, Modifications, and Rulings, etc.: Welded Stainless Steel Pressure Pipe from India, 80683 2016-27476 Recent Trends in U.S. Services Trade, 2017 Annual Report, 80682-80683 2016-27446 Justice Department Justice Department See

Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives Bureau

NOTICES Proposed Consent Decrees under CERCLA, 80686 2016-27537
Legal Legal Services Corporation NOTICES Meetings; Sunshine Act, 80686-80687 2016-27659 National Institute National Institutes of Health NOTICES Meetings: Center for Scientific Review, 80667-80668 2016-27460 2016-27461 National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, 80668 2016-27462 National Institutes of Health, 80667 2016-27463 National Oceanic National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RULES Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska: Pacific Cod in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area, 80610-80611 2016-27523 PROPOSED RULES Protection for Hawaiian Spinner Dolphins under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, 80629-80630 2016-27399 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Large Pelagic Fishing Survey, 80645-80646 2016-27465 Atlantic Highly Migratory Species: Exempted Fishing, Scientific Research, Display, Shark Research Fishery, and Chartering Permits; Letters of Acknowledgment, 80646-80649 2016-27466 Meetings: Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Advisory Panel, 80643-80644 2016-27473 North Pacific Fishery Management Council, 80649-80650 2016-27495 Taking and Importing Marine Mammals: Elliot Bay Seawall Project in Seattle, WA, 80644-80645 2016-27464 National Science National Science Foundation NOTICES Meetings: Advisory Committee for Computer and Information Science and Engineering, 80687-80688 2016-27513 Research Performance Progress Report, 80687 2016-27505 Nuclear Regulatory Nuclear Regulatory Commission NOTICES Test Plans: Response of Nuclear Power Plant Instrumentation Cables When Exposed to Fire Conditions, 80688-80689 2016-27721 Postal Regulatory Postal Regulatory Commission NOTICES New Postal Products, 80689 2016-27443 Presidential Documents Presidential Documents PROCLAMATIONS Special Observances: American Education Week (Proc. 9540), 80981-80984 2016-27756 Get Smart About Antibiotics Week (Proc. 9541), 80985-80986 2016-27758 National Apprenticeship Week (Proc. 9542), 80987-80988 2016-27759 Saint Lawrence Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation NOTICES Meetings: Advisory Board, 80716 2016-27524 Securities Securities and Exchange Commission NOTICES Meetings; Sunshine Act, 80706-80707 2016-27630 2016-27631 Self-Regulatory Organizations; Proposed Rule Changes: Bats EDGX Exchange, Inc., 80705-80706 2016-27468 Chicago Board Options Exchange, Inc., 80689-80691 2016-27471 Miami International Securities Exchange LLC, 80691-80694 2016-27467 NASDAQ PHLX LLC, 80694-80701 2016-27469 NYSE Arca, Inc., 80703-80705 2016-27470 The NASDAQ Stock Market LLC, 80701-80703 2016-27472 State Department State Department NOTICES Delegations of Authority, 80707 2016-27553 Surface Mining Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement Office RULES Stream Protection Rule: Final Environmental Impact Statement, 80592-80593 2016-27655 Trade Representative Trade Representative, Office of United States NOTICES Generalized System of Preferences: Import Statistics Relating to Competitive Need Limitations, 80707-80708 2016-27542 Transportation Department Transportation Department See

Federal Aviation Administration

See

Federal Highway Administration

See

Federal Railroad Administration

See

Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation

Treasury Treasury Department See

Comptroller of the Currency

See

Internal Revenue Service

See

United States Mint

RULES Acquisition Regulations: Incremental Funding of Fixed-Price, Time-and-Material or Labor-Hour Contracts during a Continuing Resolution, 80608-80610 2016-27548 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 80719-80720 2016-27490
U.S. Mint United States Mint NOTICES Meetings: Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee, 80720 2016-27527 Veteran Affairs Veterans Affairs Department NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Disability Benefits Questionnaires—Ischemic Heart Disease, Hairy Cell and Other B-Cell Leukemia, and Parkinson's Disease, 80720-80721 2016-27489 Meetings: Veterans' Advisory Committee on Rehabilitation, 80721 2016-27457 Separate Parts In This Issue Part II Housing and Urban Development Department, 80724-80825 2016-25888 Part III Environmental Protection Agency, 80828-80980 2016-25292 Part IV Presidential Documents, 80981-80988 2016-27756 2016-27758 2016-27759 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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81 221 Wednesday, November 16, 2016 Rules and Regulations COMMODITY FUTURES TRADING COMMISSION 17 CFR Part 3 RIN 3038-AE49 Chief Compliance Officer Annual Report Requirements for Futures Commission Merchants, Swap Dealers, and Major Swap Participants; Amendments to Filing Dates AGENCY:

Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (“Commission” or “CFTC”) is amending its regulations regarding the timing for furnishing to the Commission the chief compliance officer (“CCO”) annual reports of futures commission merchants (“FCMs”), swap dealers (“SDs”), and major swap participants (“MSPs”) (collectively, “Registrants”). The Commission is also amending its regulations by delegating to the Director of the Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight (“DSIO”) authority to grant extensions to the CCO annual report filing deadline.

DATES:

This rule will become effective November 16, 2016.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Eileen T. Flaherty, Director, 202-418-5326, [email protected]; Erik Remmler, Deputy Director, 202-418-7630, [email protected]; Laura Gardy, Associate Director, 202-418-7645, [email protected]; or Pamela M. Geraghty, Special Counsel, 202-418-5634, [email protected], Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight, Commodity Futures Trading Commission, Three Lafayette Centre, 1155 21st Street NW., Washington, DC 20581.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Proposed Rule

On August 12, 2016, the Commission published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“Proposal”) 1 to amend Commission Regulation 3.3(f) regarding when Registrants must furnish to the Commission annual reports describing, among other things, their compliance with the Commodity Exchange Act (“CEA”) and CFTC regulations (the “CCO Annual Reports”).2 The Proposal sought to extend the time period for furnishing the CCO Annual Report to the Commission from 60 days to 90 days after a Registrant's fiscal year-end by codifying the ongoing relief most recently provided to Registrants in CFTC Staff Letter No. 15-15.3 The Proposal would permit an FCM to furnish its CCO Annual Report to the Commission not more than 30 days after submission of its Form 1-FR-FCM or Financial Operational Combined Uniform Single Report (“FOCUS Report”), and would permit an SD or MSP to furnish its CCO Annual Report to the Commission not more than 90 days after its fiscal year-end until such time as the Commission adopts and implements rules establishing the time for filing the annual financial condition report required under CEA section 4s(f). The Proposal also contemplated adding new paragraph (f)(2)(ii) to clarify the filing requirements for SDs and MSPs located in a jurisdiction for which the Commission has issued a comparability determination and which elect to file reports in accordance with that determination (“Substituted Compliance Registrants”). Finally, the Proposal added new paragraph (h) to delegate to the Director of DSIO authority to grant extensions to the CCO Annual Report filing deadline.

1 Chief Compliance Officer Annual Report Requirements for Futures Commission Merchants, Swap Dealers, and Major Swap Participants; Amendments to Filing Dates, 81 FR 53343 (Aug. 12, 2016).

2 CEA section 4s(k)(3)(A)(i), 7 U.S.C. 6s(k)(3)(A)(i), requires CCOs for SDs and MSPs, in accordance with rules prescribed by the Commission, to prepare and sign an annual report describing, among other things, the SD's or MSP's compliance with the CEA and CFTC regulations. CEA section 4s(k)(3)(B)(i), 7 U.S.C. 6s(k)(3)(B)(i), requires the CCO Annual Report to accompany each appropriate financial report of the SD or MSP required to be furnished to the Commission. CEA section 4d(d), 7 U.S.C. 6d(d), requires CCOs of FCMs to “perform such duties and responsibilities” as are established by Commission regulation or rules of a registered futures association. Regulations 3.3(e) and (f), 17 CFR 3.3(e) and (f), codify the duty to furnish the CCO Annual Report to the Commission for all Registrants.

3 CFTC Letter No. 15-15, No-Action Relief for Futures Commission Merchants, Swap Dealers, and Major Swap Participants from Compliance with the Timing Requirements of Commission Regulation 3.3(f)(2) Relating to Annual Reports by Chief Compliance Officers (Mar. 27, 2015), available at http://www.cftc.gov/idc/groups/public/@lrlettergeneral/documents/letter/15-15.pdf.

The Commission generally requested comments on the Proposal and also solicited comments on certain specific matters.4 For example, the Commission solicited comments on the appropriateness of permitting Registrants an additional 30 days to furnish their CCO Annual Reports to the Commission, as well as the Commission's application of Regulation 3.3(f)(2) to Substituted Compliance Registrants.

4See 81 FR at 53346.

II. Summary of Comments

In response to the Proposal, the Commission received one comment submitted jointly by the Futures Industry Association (the “FIA”), International Swaps and Derivatives Association (“ISDA”), and the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (“SIFMA”) (collectively, “Commenters”) on behalf of their FCM, SD, and MSP member firms.5 The Commenters were generally supportive of the Proposal and agreed with the basic premise that the statutory requirement under CEA section 4s(k)(3)(B)(i) requiring CCO Annual Reports to “accompany” each appropriate financial report does not require a simultaneous filing of the two reports.

5 Letter from FIA, ISDA, and SIFMA (Sept. 12, 2016). This comment letter is available on the Commission's Web site at http://comments.cftc.gov/PublicComments/CommentList.aspx?id=1729.

The Commenters made several suggestions aimed at more closely aligning the Proposal with the relief provided in CFTC Staff Letter No. 15-15 and providing greater certainty for all SDs. First, Commenters cautioned against linking the filing deadline for the CCO Annual Report to the submission date for the applicable annual financial reports. The Commenters stated that using the submission date as a reference point, rather than the deadline date, could have the practical effect of reducing the time period for filing the CCO Annual Report if a Registrant chose to submit their financial report early.6 Commenters asserted that this outcome would be problematic because the inherent differences, in both substance and process, between CCO Annual Reports and financial reports affect the time required to adequately prepare each report. As a result, linking the CCO Annual Report deadline to the submission of financial reports would require new coordination and processes between the distinct groups responsible for each report's preparation.7 To address this technical timing issue, the Commenters recommended that the filing of the CCO Annual Report be required 30 days after the regulatory deadline for filing the financial reports.8

6Id. at 2.

7Id.

8Id.

The Commenters further noted that under the Commission's proposed Capital Requirements of Swap Dealers and Major Swap Participants rulemaking,9 prudentially regulated SDs would not be required to comply with the Commission's financial condition report requirement.10 As such, Commenters explained that under language in the Proposal, which ties the submission of the CCO Annual Report with the submission of applicable financial reports, prudentially regulated SDs would have a different CCO Annual Report deadline than other SDs.11 Commenters suggested that, in order to achieve consistency among all SDs, the Commission should “set a 90-day deadline for SDs that are not subject to the Commission's proposed financial reporting rule.” 12

9See Capital Requirements of Swap Dealers and Major Swap Participants, 76 FR 27802, 27838 (proposed May 12, 2011).

10 Letter from FIA, ISDA, and SIFMA at 2.

11Id.

12Id.

Finally, regarding application of the Proposal to Substituted Compliance Registrants, the Commenters requested that the Commission provide “supplemental guidance as to what constitutes a `specifically identifiable completion date'” for Substituted Compliance Registrants who file comparable annual reporting information (hereinafter, “Comparable Annual Report”).13 The Commenters indicated that different jurisdictions address reporting deadlines in many different ways that can change over time and from year to year. Accordingly, it was not clear to Commenters how the Proposal language would apply in all instances.

13Id. at 3.

III. The Final Rule

The Commission has considered the comments it received in response to the Proposal. Upon consideration of Commenters' suggestions, the Commission's implementation experience,14 and the current absence of financial condition reporting requirements for SDs under Commission regulations,15 the Commission is adopting a final rule that modifies Regulation 3.3(f)(2)(i) to give all Registrants up to 90 days after their fiscal year-end to furnish the CCO Annual Report to the Commission. Because the CEA section 4s(k)(3)(B) contemplates year-end filing for financial reports and CCO Annual Reports, the final rule ensures that the two reports will accompany one another at the Commission within a proximate and predictable timeframe. The Commission believes that providing all Registrants a deadline that follows their annual fiscal year meets Congressional intent and achieves fairness and consistency across all Registrants, while also codifying longstanding no-action relief. The final rule text effectively results in the same outcome as the Proposal, but does so in a manner that is simple and direct. The Commission is adopting Regulation 3.3(f)(2)(ii) as proposed, which incorporates the modified language of Regulation 3.3(f)(2)(i), and also clarifying its application to Substituted Compliance Registrants. The Commission received no comments on the proposed delegation of authority to the Director of DSIO to grant extensions to the CCO annual report filing deadline, and is adopting Regulation 3.3(h) as proposed.

14See 81 FR 53343, 53344 n.7.

15Id. at 53345 n.14.

A. CCO Annual Report Filing Deadline

The Commission believes that the language in CEA section 4s(k)(3)(B) requiring the CCO to “annually” prepare a compliance report to accompany each “appropriate” financial report does not require a simultaneous filing of the two reports to achieve its intended purpose. Rather, the intention of the statute is to require the CCO Annual Report to follow an annual reporting cycle in line with the financial reporting cycle aimed at providing the Commission, and a Registrant's senior management, with a timely self-evaluation and internal assessment of the Registrant's compliance program.16 In a similar manner, under Commission regulations, when entities are subject to capital adequacy requirements, periodic financial reporting is the mechanism employed to demonstrate compliance. Annual and other financial reporting requirements provide the Commission and self-regulatory organizations information about the financial condition of the registrant. As observed by the Commission and highlighted by Commenters, the CCO Annual Report and annual financial reports, though they serve similar informational goals, are inherently different and require different processes and expertise to produce. Accordingly, while each ought to be completed on an annual reporting cycle and provided to the Commission in temporal proximity, their submission to the Commission need not occur simultaneously to achieve their intended purpose.

16See Designation of a Chief Compliance Officer; Required Compliance Policies; and Annual Report of a Futures Commission Merchant, Swap Dealer, or Major Swap Participant, 75 FR 70881, 70883 (proposed Nov. 19, 2010).

Permitting all Registrants to submit their CCO Annual Report to the Commission within 90 days after their fiscal year-end meets the statutory intent of having the CCO Annual Report follow an annual reporting cycle in line with the financial reporting cycle while providing fair and consistent treatment across all Registrants. The final rule also ensures that Registrants may continue to leverage their existing report preparation processes that were developed while the Commission's no-action relief was in place. This ensures that there is effectively no change in the burden and expense of preparing the CCO Annual Reports as a result of the final rule.

B. Deadline for Substituted Compliance Registrants

With respect to the application of new paragraph (f)(2)(ii) to Substituted Compliance Registrants, the Proposal provided that Substituted Compliance Registrants whose home jurisdictions' regulations identify a specific completion or due date have 15 days after that date to submit their Comparable Annual Report to the CFTC. If a Substituted Compliance Registrant's home jurisdiction does not require or is silent as to a particular completion or due date for the Comparable Annual Report, then the Substituted Compliance Registrant must furnish its Comparable Annual Report to the Commission not more than 90 days after its fiscal year-end.

As described above, the Commenters requested additional guidance on the meaning of “specifically identifiable completion date.” The Commission is clarifying that the completion or due date could be set by the Substituted Compliance Registrant's home jurisdiction's regulations, or that the Substituted Compliance Registrant's applicable regulatory authority could otherwise announce a modified completion or due date consistent with the practices and procedures of the applicable regulatory regime. The Commission anticipates a Substituted Compliance Registrant will timely inform DSIO of any such modifications to their completion or due date. Whether the completion or due date remains static from year to year, or is subject to annual modification, the Commission intends to defer to the Substituted Compliance Registrant's home jurisdiction in this regard.

The Commission, however, is concerned about the possibility of significant reporting delays or deferrals that may apply to a specific Registrant. Accordingly, the Commission expects that a Substituted Compliance Registrant will inform the Commission of any delays or deferrals beyond the deadlines set by their home jurisdiction regulations or applicable regulatory authority that would extend that particular Registrant's Comparable Annual Report filing date, and seek appropriate relief under Regulation 3.3(f)(5), as necessary.

C. Delegation of Authority to the Director of DSIO

The Commission received no comments on its proposal to delegate to the Director of DSIO, or such other employee(s) that the Director may designate, the authority to grant extensions of time to file CCO Annual Reports. Accordingly, the Commission is adopting new paragraph (h) as proposed.

IV. Related Matters A. Regulatory Flexibility Act

The Regulatory Flexibility Act 17 (“RFA”) requires that agencies consider whether the rules they propose will have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities and, if so, provide a regulatory flexibility analysis reflecting the impact. In the Proposal, the Commission certified that the Proposal would not have a significant economic impact on those entities. The Commission received no comments with respect to the RFA.

17 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.

As discussed in the Proposal, the final rule amends the filing deadline for CCO Annual Reports of FCMs, SDs, and MSPs and clarifies the filing deadline for Comparable Annual Reports. The final rule affects FCMs, SDs, and MSPs that are required to be registered with the Commission. The Commission has previously established certain definitions of “small entities” to be used in evaluating the impact of its regulations on small entities in accordance with the RFA, and has previously determined that FCMs, SDs, and MSPs are not small entities for purposes of the RFA.18 Therefore, the Commission believes that the final rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. Accordingly, the Chairman, on behalf of the Commission, hereby certifies, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 605(b), that the final rule being published today by this Federal Register release will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

18See Policy Statement and Establishment of Definitions of “Small Entities” for Purposes of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 47 FR 18618, 18619 (Apr. 30, 1982) (FCMs); Further Definition of “Swap Dealer,” “Security-Based Swap Dealer,” “Major Swap Participant,” “Major Security-Based Swap Participant” and “Eligible Contract Participant,” 77 FR 30596, 30701 (May 23, 2012) (SDs and MSPs).

B. Paperwork Reduction Act

The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (“PRA”) 19 provides that a federal agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid control number issued by the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”). As discussed in the Proposal, the final rule contains a collection of information for which the Commission has previously received a control number from the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”). The title for this collection of information is “Annual Report for Chief Compliance Officer of Registrants, OMB control number 3038-0080.” As discussed in the Proposal, the Commission believes that this final rule will not impose any new information collection requirements that require approval of OMB under the PRA. As a general matter, the final rule allows Registrants up to 90 days after the end of their fiscal years, and certain Substituted Compliance Registrants with up to 15 days after the date on which the Comparable Annual Report must be completed under the requirements of their home jurisdiction, to file the CCO Annual Report and Comparable Annual Reports, respectively. As such, the final rule does not, by itself, impose any new burden or any new information collection requirements in addition to those that already exist in connection with the preparation and delivery of the CCO Annual Report pursuant to part 3 of the Commission's regulations.

19 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.

C. Cost-Benefit Considerations 1. Background

As discussed above, the Commission is adopting amendments to the filing requirements for CCO Annual Reports in Regulation 3.3 that: (1) Increase the amount of time registrants have to file their CCO Annual Reports with the Commission; and (2) clarify the filing requirements for Comparable Annual Reports. The baseline for this cost and benefit consideration is existing Commission Regulation 3.3.

2. Costs

The final rule does not change the report contents or require any additional actions to be taken by Registrants. The 90 days (or up to 15 days after the date on which a Comparable Annual Report must be completed under applicable home jurisdiction standards that allow more time) provided by the final rule lengthens the time before senior management or the board of the Registrants and the Commission may receive the CCO Annual Reports. The additional time to furnish the reports should not materially impact regulatory oversight given that the purpose of the reports is to provide a status update for the Registrant's compliance activities over the course of the preceding fiscal year and planned changes for the coming year. The reports generally do not serve to address crisis situations for which immediacy is critical. Therefore, the additional time allowed should not materially impact the usefulness of the information in the reports.20 The Commission had no other information available to it indicating that changing the filing deadline would measurably change the cost to prepare the CCO Annual Reports. Accordingly, the Commission believes that the final rule does not impose any additional costs on any other market participants, the markets themselves, or the general public. In the Proposal, the Commission solicited comments regarding how the costs associated with the CCO Annual Reports could change as a result of adopting the Proposal, but did not receive any.

20 The CCO Annual Report must contain a description of material non-compliance events that occurred over the review period. However, reporting on those events in the CCO Annual Report provides transparency regarding the effectiveness of the implementation of the compliance program over the preceding year for management and the CFTC.

3. Benefits

The Commission believes that the final rule provides relief for Registrants from time pressures in preparing and filing their CCO Annual Reports. The additional time provided will allow Registrants to more carefully complete their internal processes used to develop the broad variety of information needed for the reports resulting in more accurate and complete reports. The Commission solicited comments regarding the nature of any benefits that could result from adoption of the Proposal, but did not receive any specific comments. Commenters were generally appreciative of the Commission's effort to improve the process.21

21 Letter from FIA, ISDA, and SIFMA at 1.

4. Section 15(a) Factors

Section 15(a) of the CEA requires the Commission to consider the costs and benefits of its actions before promulgating a regulation under the CEA or issuing certain orders.22 Section 15(a) further specifies that the costs and benefits shall be evaluated in light of five broad areas of market and public concern: (1) Protection of market participants and the public; (2) efficiency, competitiveness, and financial integrity of futures markets; (3) price discovery; (4) sound risk management practices; and (5) other public interest considerations. The Commission considered the costs and benefits resulting from its discretionary determinations with respect to the section 15(a) factors.

22 7 U.S.C. 19(a).

a. Protection of Market Participants and the Public

The Commission recognizes that there are trade-offs between reducing regulatory burdens and ensuring that the Commission has sufficient, timely information to fulfill its regulatory mission. The final rule is intended to reduce some of the regulatory burdens on Registrants. While the final rule will delay the time in which the Commission will receive the CCO Annual Reports, the delay is relatively short given that the information in the reports looks back over the entire year-long reporting period, and identifies planned improvements for the coming year. Accordingly, the Commission believes that the short delay will not affect the protection of market participants and the public.

b. Efficiency, Competitiveness, and Financial Integrity of Markets

The Commission believes that the final rule could improve allocational efficiency for participants in the market by reducing the burden of preparing the CCO Annual Report in a shorter time-frame thereby allowing them to allocate compliance resources more efficiently over the report preparation period. The Commission believes that the final rule will not have any market efficiency, competitiveness, or market integrity impacts because the reports address internal compliance programs of each Registrant and are not publicly available.

c. Price Discovery

The Commission believes that the final rule does not impact on price discovery. Given that the final rule affects only the timing of when the CCO Annual Reports are filed with the Commission and the CCO Annual Reports generally would not contain trade information or be available to the public, the final rule does not affect price discovery.

d. Sound Risk Management Practices

The Commission believes that the final rule will not have a meaningful effect on the risk management practices of Registrants. While the CCO Annual Reports may discuss certain risk management aspects related to Registrants' compliance programs, the final rule only amends the timing of delivery of the reports to the Commission, not the contents of the reports. As described above under subsection 4.a, the short delay in delivery of the reports provided for by the final rule is not significant given the nature of the information included in the report and allowing additional time to prepare CCO Annual Reports might allow Registrants to prepare better reports that more effectively address the information contained therein.

e. Other Public Interest Considerations

The Commission has not identified any other public interest considerations for this rulemaking.

List of Subjects in 17 CFR Part 3

Administrative practice and procedure, Brokers, Commodity futures, Major swap participants, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Swap dealers.

For the reasons stated in the preamble, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission amends 17 CFR part 3 as follows:

PART 3—REGISTRATION 1. The authority citation for part 3 is revised to read as follows: Authority:

5 U.S.C. 552, 552b; 7 U.S.C. 1a, 2, 6a, 6b, 6b-1, 6c, 6d, 6e, 6f, 6g, 6h, 6i, 6k, 6m, 6n, 6o, 6p, 6s, 8, 9, 9a, 12, 12a, 13b, 13c, 16a, 18, 19, 21, and 23, as amended by Title VII of Pub. L. 111-203, 124 Stat. 1376.

2. Amend § 3.3 as follows: a. Revise paragraph (f)(2); and b. Add paragraph (h).

The revision and addition read as follows:

§ 3.3 Chief compliance officer.

(f) * * *

(2)(i) Except as provided in paragraph (f)(2)(ii) of this section, the annual report shall be furnished electronically to the Commission not more than 90 days after the end of the fiscal year of the futures commission merchant, swap dealer, or major swap participant.

(ii) The annual report of a swap dealer or major swap participant that is eligible to comply with a substituted compliance regime for paragraph (e) of this section pursuant to a comparability determination of the Commission may be furnished to the Commission electronically up to 15 days after the date on which the comparable annual report must be completed under the requirements of the applicable substituted compliance regime. If the substituted compliance regime does not specify a date by which the comparable annual report must be completed, then the annual report shall be furnished to the Commission by the date specified in paragraph (f)(2)(i) of this section.

(h) Delegation of authority. The Commission hereby delegates to the Director of the Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight, or such other employee or employees as the Director may designate from time to time, the authority to grant extensions of time, as set forth in paragraph (f)(5) of this section. Notwithstanding such delegation, in any case in which a Commission employee delegated authority under this paragraph believes it appropriate, he or she may submit to the Commission for its consideration the question of whether an extension of time should be granted. The delegation of authority in this paragraph shall not prohibit the Commission, at its election, from exercising the authority set forth in paragraph (f)(5) of this section.

Issued in Washington, DC, on November 10, 2016, by the Commission. Robert N. Sidman, Deputy Secretary of the Commission. Note:

The following appendix will not appear in the Code of Federal Regulations.

Appendix to Chief Compliance Officer Annual Report Requirements for Futures Commission Merchants, Swap Dealers, and Major Swap Participants; Amendments to Filing Dates—Commission Voting Summary

On this matter, Chairman Massad and Commissioners Bowen and Giancarlo voted in the affirmative. No Commissioner voted in the negative.

[FR Doc. 2016-27525 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6351-01-P
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration 21 CFR Part 1105 [Docket No. FDA-2016-N-1555] Refuse To Accept Procedures for Premarket Tobacco Product Submissions; Withdrawal AGENCY:

Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

ACTION:

Direct final rule; withdrawal.

SUMMARY:

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published in the Federal Register of August 8, 2016, a direct final rule regarding procedures for refusing to accept premarket tobacco product submissions. The comment period closed October 24, 2016. FDA is withdrawing the direct final rule because the Agency received significant adverse comment. FDA will consider the comments we received on the direct final rule to be comments on the companion proposed rule published at 81 FR 52371 (August 8, 2016).

DATES:

The direct final rule published at 81 FR 52329 (August 8, 2016), is withdrawn effective November 16, 2016.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Annette Marthaler or Paul Hart, Office of Regulations, Center for Tobacco Products, Food and Drug Administration, Document Control Center, Bldg. 71, Rm. G335, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002, 877-287-1373, [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Therefore, under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, and under authority delegated to the Commissioner of Food and Drugs, the direct final rule published on August 8, 2016, (81 FR 52329) is withdrawn.

Dated: November 9, 2016. Peter Lurie, Associate Commissioner for Public Health Strategy and Analysis.
[FR Doc. 2016-27456 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4164-01-P
DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT 24 CFR Parts 888, 982, 983, and 985 [Docket No. FR-5855-F-03] RIN 2501-AD74 Establishing a More Effective Fair Market Rent System; Using Small Area Fair Market Rents in the Housing Choice Voucher Program Instead of the Current 50th Percentile FMRs AGENCY:

Office of the Secretary, HUD.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

This final rule applies the use of Small Area Fair Market Rents (Small Area FMRs) in the administration of the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program for certain metropolitan areas. This final rule provides for the use of Small Area FMRs, in place of the 50th percentile rent, the currently codified regulations, to address high levels of voucher concentration in certain communities. The use of Small Area FMRs is expected to give HCV tenants access to areas of high opportunity and lower poverty areas by providing a subsidy that is adequate to cover rents in those areas, thereby reducing the number of voucher families that reside in areas of high poverty concentration.

DATES:

Effective: January 17, 2017.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For information about this rule, contact Peter B. Kahn, Director, Economic and Market Analysis Division, Office of Economic Affairs, Office of Policy Development and Research, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, 451 7th Street SW., Washington, DC 20410, telephone (202) 402-2409 or Becky L. Primeaux, Director, Housing Voucher Management and Operations Division, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, 451 7th Street SW., Washington, DC 20410, telephone (202) 708-0477; email: [email protected]. The listed telephone numbers are not toll-free numbers. Persons with hearing or speech impairments may access this number through TTY by calling Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339 (this is a toll-free number).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Under this final rule, public housing agencies (PHAs) operating in designated metropolitan areas are required to use Small Area FMRs, while PHAs not operating in the designated areas have the option to use Small Area FMRs in administering their HCV programs. Other programs that use FMRs would continue to use area-wide FMRs. This final rule also provides for regulatory implementation of certain provisions of the Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act (HOTMA) related to FMRs, as well as conforming regulatory changes to part 982 concerning the reduction in payment standards during the term of the Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) contract in the HCV program. Specifically, the final rule provides for publication of FMRs by way of the World Wide Web, and provides that PHAs are no longer required to reduce the payment standard for a family under HAP contract when the PHA is required to reduce the payment standard for its program as the result of a reduction in the FMR.

I. Executive Summary A. Purpose of the Regulatory Action

This final rule establishes a more effective means for HCV tenants to move into areas of higher opportunity and lower poverty by providing the tenants with a subsidy adequate to make such areas accessible and, consequently, help reduce the number of voucher families that reside in areas of high poverty concentration. Prior to this rule, subsidy for HUD's HCV program is determined by a formula that considers rent prices across an entire metropolitan area. However, rents can vary widely within a metropolitan area depending upon the size of the metropolitan area and the neighborhood in the metropolitan area within which one resides. The result of determining rents on the basis of an entire metropolitan area is that a voucher subsidy may be too high or may be too low to cover market rent in a given neighborhood. To date, HUD's policy for addressing high concentrations of voucher holders raises the level of the FMR from the 40th percentile to the 50th percentile (roughly a 7—8 percent increase) in the whole FMR area. This level of added subsidy has not been targeted to areas of opportunity, and consequently, this formula has not proven effective in addressing the problem of concentrated poverty and economic and racial segregation in neighborhoods. Experience with the 50th percentile regime has shown that the majority of HCV tenants use their vouchers in neighborhoods where rents are low but poverty is generally high. Small Area FMRs will complement HUD's other efforts to support households in making informed choices about units and neighborhoods with the goal of increasing the share of households that choose to use their vouchers in low poverty opportunity areas.

This rule provides that in lieu of determining rents on the basis of an entire metropolitan area, rents will be determined on the basis of ZIP codes for those metropolitan areas with both significant voucher concentration challenges and market conditions where establishing FMRs by ZIP code areas has the potential to significantly increase opportunities for voucher families. ZIP codes are small enough to reflect neighborhood differences and provide an easier method of comparing rents within one ZIP code to another ZIP code area within a metropolitan area. Based on early evidence from PHAs using Small Area FMRs that are in place in certain metropolitan areas in the U.S., HUD believes that Small Area FMRs are more effective in helping families move to areas of higher opportunity and lower poverty.

B. Summary of the Major Provisions of the Regulatory Action

The major provisions of this final rule are set out in two sections: (1) Those that were in the proposed rule and retained at the final rule; and (2) those that were revised at the final rule or are new provisions at the final rule stage, developed in response to public comment: The major provisions are as follows:

1. Major Provisions at the Proposed Rule Stage Retained by This Final Rule

• Defines Small Area FMR areas as the U.S. Postal Service ZIP code areas within a designated metropolitan area.

• Provides for criteria by which Small Area FMRs will be set. Small Area FMRs will be set for metropolitan areas where the area includes the following criteria: number of HCVs under lease (initially, 2,500 or more); the standard quality rental stock, within the metropolitan area, that is in small areas (that is ZIP codes) where the Small Area FMR is more than 110 percent of the metropolitan FMR (initially 20 percent or more); and the percentage of voucher holders living in concentrated low-income areas relative to all renters within these areas over the entire metropolitan area exceeds a specified threshold (initially 1.55). (This final rule also adopts additional criteria for setting Small Area FMRs for a metropolitan area, see below.)

• Defines “concentrated low-income areas” to mean those census tracts in the metropolitan FMR area with a poverty rate of 25 percent or more; or any tract in the metropolitan FMR area where 50 percent or more of the households earn incomes at less than 60 percent of the area median income (AMI) and are designated as Qualified Census Tracts in accordance with section 42 of the Internal Revenue Code (26 U.S.C. 42).

• Provides for designation of Small Area FMR areas at the beginning of a Federal fiscal year and makes additional area designations every 5 years thereafter as new data becomes available.

• Requires if a metropolitan area meets the criteria for application of Small Area FMRs, that all PHAs administering HCV programs in that area will be required to use Small Area FMRs.

• Provides that a PHA that is administering an HCV program in a metropolitan area that is not subject to application of Small Area FMRs may opt to use Small Area FMRs by seeking approval of HUD's Office of Public and Indian Housing through written request to such office.

• For all rent determinations of FMRs, 40th percentile or Small Area FMRs, replaces “the most recent decennial census” with the “most recent American Community Survey conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau.”

• Provides that metropolitan areas with FMRs set at the 50th percentile rent will transition to either (1) the 40th percentile rent at the expiration of the 3-year period for the 50th percentile rent, or (2) designation as a Small Area FMR area in accordance with the criteria for determining a Small Area FMR area.

• Provides that a PHA with jurisdiction in a 50th percentile FMR area that reverts to the standard 40th percentile FMR may request HUD approval of payment standard amounts based on the 50th percentile rent in accordance with the regulations in 24 CFR 982.503(f) that are changed by this final rule. PHAs, however, would be required to continue to meet the provisions of 24 CFR 982.503(f) annually in order to maintain payment standards based on 50th percentile rents.

• Removes the existing regulations at 24 CFR 888.113 that provide for FMRs to be set at the 50th percentile rent. However, for areas not selected for implementation of Small Area FMRs, the final rule does not revoke any FMR currently set at the 50th percentile rent, and for which the current 3-year term for retaining a 50th percentile rent has not expired.

2. Major Provisions—New Provisions or Changes Made at Final Rule Stage

• Conforms the regulations at § 982.505(c)(3) with the portion of section 107 of the Housing Through Opportunity Modernization Act (HOTMA), Public Law 114-201, which provides PHAs with the option to hold families under a Housing Assistance Payments (HAP) contract harmless from payment standard reductions that are currently required at the family's second annual recertification if the family's payment standard falls outside of the basic range as the result of a decrease in FMRs (including a decrease in FMR attributable to the implementation of Small Area FMRs). As an additional protection, the final rule provides that should a PHA choose not to hold the payment standard at its current level for families under HAP contract in an area experiencing a payment standard reduction, the PHA may set the payment standard for families that remain under HAP contract at any amount between the current payment standard and new normally applicable payment standard amount, and may further reduce the payment standard for families under HAP contract over time to gradually bring the family's payment standard down to payment standard that is normally applicable to the area for the PHA's program or reduce the gap between the two payment standards. The rule further extends these same flexibilities to the PHA in cases where the payment standard decrease is not the result of a FMR decrease.

The rule further provides that if the PHA chooses to apply a reduction in the payment standard to the family's subsidy calculation during the HAP contract term, the earliest the PHA may implement the initial reduction in the payment standard is the second regular reexamination following the effective date of the decrease in the payment standard amount. Section 107 of HOTMA also provides new requirements for publishing HUD's FMRs.

• Additional criteria by which Small Area FMRs will be set.

○ Adds the vacancy rate of an area as a criterion to the selection parameters for Small Area FMRs. The vacancy rate will be calculated in the following manner: Using data from the 1-year American Community Survey (ACS) tabulations, the vacancy rate is the number of Vacant For Rent Units divided by the sum of the number of Vacant For Rent Units, the number of Renter Occupied Units, and the number of Rented, not occupied units. The vacancy rate will be calculated from the 3 most current ACS 1 year datasets available and average the 3 values. Initially, this threshold will be set at 4 percent, meaning areas designated for Small Area FMRs must have vacancy rates higher than 4 percent.

○ Adds an additional requirement to the voucher concentration ratio included in the proposed rule. In addition to requiring the ratio of the proportion of voucher tenants in concentrated low-income areas (CLIAs) to the proportion of renter occupied units in CLIAs to exceed a minimum threshold (initially 155 percent), the final rule requires that the numerator of the ratio (the proportion of voucher tenants in CLIAs) meet or exceed a minimum threshold. Initially, this threshold will be set at 25 percent.

• Exempts all project-based vouchers from required application of Small Area FMRs but allows a PHA operating under the Small Area FMRs for its tenant-based program to apply Small Area FMRs to future PBV projects (and to current PBV projects provided the owner mutually agrees to the change).

• Provides that a PHA's selection to use Small Area FMRs for PBVs would not require HUD approval but should be undertaken in accordance with guidance issued by HUD and indicated in the PHA's administrative plan.

• Rather than codify both the selection criteria and the selection values in the regulatory text as in the proposed rule, the final rule codifies the selection criteria in the regulatory text, but does not codify the selection values in the regulatory text. The selection values for the first round of Small Area FMR areas is announced in a separate notice published in today's Federal Register. The selection values for future designations of Small Area FMR areas will be made available for public comment via Federal Register notice before HUD selects additional areas to be designated as Small Area FMR Areas.

• Makes two changes to the exception payment standard requirements in response to public comments:

○ PHAs not operating in Small Area FMR designated areas may establish exception payment standards for a ZIP code area of up to 110 percent of the relevant Small Area FMR by notifying HUD; and

○ The 50 percent population cap (24 CFR 982.503(c)(5)) will not be applicable to Exception Payment Standards in Small Area FMR areas.

• Exempts manufactured home space rental from Small Area FMRs.

• Provides that PHAs have up to three months from the date when the new FMRs go into effect in which to update their payment standards if a change is necessary to fall within the basic range of new FMRs. For example, if the new FMR went into effect on October 1, 2017, the PHA would need to update their payment standard if necessary to fall within the basic range of the new FMRs no later than January 1, 2018.

• Provides HUD may suspend a Small Area FMR designation for a metropolitan area, including at the request of a PHA, where HUD determines such action is warranted based on a documented finding of adverse rental housing market conditions that will be set out by notice (for example, the metropolitan area experiences a significant loss of housing units as a result of a natural disaster).

• Provides that HUD may provide an exception payment standard for a PHA administering the HCV program under Small Area FMRs for an entire ZIP Code area in accordance with the conditions and procedures provided by notice in the Federal Register. The requirements at § 982.503(c) do not apply to these exception payment standard requests.

C. Costs and Benefits

The main benefit of the final rule is that, through setting rental subsidy amounts at a more local level, assisted households will be more able to afford homes in areas of high opportunity than under current policy. Such moves are expected to benefit both individual households, for example, through access to better schools or safer neighborhoods, and areas as a whole through reducing concentrated neighborhood poverty. Other benefits could arise through the reduction of overpayment of rent in areas where the neighborhood rent is below the metropolitan average. Early evidence from current Small Area FMR locations suggests that there could be per-voucher cost decreases relative to 50th percentile rents, depending on the choices made by tenants. Evidence also suggests that families moved to better neighborhoods with higher rents, although not greatly in excess of the metropolitan FMR, which resulted in no overall program cost increases.1 Finally, the final rule eliminates the year to year volatility of some areas changing to and from 50th percentile FMRs.

1 Please see Collinson and Ganong, “The Incidence of Housing Voucher Generosity”, available at: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2255799.

Potential costs of the final rule include the administrative expenses associated with implementation on the part of PHAs. Additionally, if there are barriers to households moving to areas of higher opportunity beyond housing costs, such as transportation expenses or social factors, assisted households might be worse off if they can no longer afford their current units in their neighborhoods. This may be particularly true for elderly families or families with a disabled member; however, HUD regulations allow PHAs wide latitude in setting payments standards for disabled tenants as “reasonable accommodations” of their disabilities. Finally, if the long-term impacts of the final rule cause per-voucher costs to rise, fewer households would receive assistance without an overall increase in program funds.

II. Background The Housing Choice Voucher Program and Fair Market Rents

HUD's HCV program helps low-income households obtain standard rental housing and reduces the share of their income that goes toward rent. Vouchers issued under the HCV program provide subsidies that allow individuals and families to rent eligible units in the private market. A key parameter in operating the HCV program is the FMR. In general, the FMR for an area is the amount that would be needed to pay the gross rent (shelter rent plus utilities) of privately owned, decent, and safe rental housing of a modest (non-luxury) nature with suitable amenities. In addition, all rents subsidized under the HCV program must meet rent reasonableness standards. Rent reasonableness is determined by PHAs with reference to rents for comparable unassisted units.

In the HCV program, the FMR is the basis for determining the “payment standard amount” used to calculate the maximum monthly subsidy for a voucher household (see § 982.503). PHAs may establish payment standards between 90 and 110 percent of the FMR.2 HCV program households receive a housing assistance payment equal to the difference between the lower of the gross rent of the unit or the payment standard established by the PHAs and the family's Total Tenant Payment (TTP), which is generally 30 percent of the household's adjusted monthly income. Participants in the voucher program can choose to live in units with gross rents higher than the payment standard, but would be required to pay the full cost of the difference between the gross rent and the payment standard, in addition to their TTP. Please note that at initial occupancy the family's share cannot exceed 40 percent of adjusted monthly income.

2 Moving to Work (MTW) agencies have the authority to waive § 982.503 and can propose, for HUD approval, alternate rent policies in their Annual MTW Plan.

HUD establishes FMRs for different geographic areas. Because payment standards are based on FMRs, housing assistance payments on behalf of the voucher household are limited by the geographic area in which the voucher household resides. HUD calculates FMRs for all nonmetropolitan counties and metropolitan areas. To date, the same FMR is applicable throughout a nonmetropolitan county or metropolitan area, which generally is comprised of several metropolitan counties. FMRs in a metropolitan area (Metropolitan FMR) represent the 40th percentile (or in special circumstances the 50th percentile) gross rent for typical non-luxury, non-substandard rental units occupied by recent movers in a local housing market.3

3 General information concerning FMRs including more detailed information about their calculation is available at https://www.huduser.gov/portal/datasets/fmr.html.

As noted earlier, HUD regulations have allowed a PHA to set a payment standard between 90 percent and 110 percent (inclusive) of the FMR. PHAs may determine that payment standards that are higher than 110 percent, or lower than 90 percent, are appropriate for subareas of their market; in this instance, a PHA would request HUD approval for a payment standard below 90 percent or an exception payment standard above 110 percent. The total population of a HUD-approved exception payment area (i.e., an area covered by a payment standard that exceeds 110 percent of the FMR) may not include more than 50 percent of the population of the FMR area (see § 982.503).

On October 2, 2000, at 65 FR 58870, HUD published a rule (2000 rule) establishing policy, currently in HUD's codified regulations, to set FMRs at the 50th percentile for “areas where higher FMRs are needed to help families, assisted under HUD's program as well as other HUD programs, find and lease decent and affordable housing.” This policy was put in place to achieve two program objectives: (1) Increase the ability of low-income families to find and lease decent and affordable housing; and (2) provide low-income families with access to a broad range of housing opportunities throughout a metropolitan area. The policy further provides that PHAs that had been authorized to use FMRs set at the 50th percentile rent may later be required to use FMRs set at the 40th percentile rent. This would occur if the FMR were set at the 50th percentile rent to provide a broad range of housing opportunities throughout a metropolitan area for three years, but the concentration of voucher holders in the metropolitan area did not lessen.

Since HUD established the 50th percentile FMRs 16 years ago, research has emerged 4 that indicates that 50th percentile FMRs are not an effective tool in increasing HCV tenant moves from areas of low opportunity to higher opportunity areas. Specifically, it appears that much of the benefit of increased FMRs simply accrues to landlords in lower rent submarket areas in the form of higher rents rather than creating an incentive for tenants to move to units in communities with more and/or better opportunities. As provided in HUD's currently codified regulation, to determine the 50th percentile program's effectiveness, HUD must measure the reduction in concentration of HCV tenants (objective 2 above) presumably from high poverty areas, over a 3-year period. If there is no measurable reduction in the concentration of HCV tenants, the FMR area loses the 50th percentile FMRs for a 3-year period. A large number of areas have been disqualified from the 50th percentile program for failure to show measurable reduction in voucher concentration of HCV tenants since 2001 when the program started, which strongly suggests that the deconcentration objective is not being met.5

4 From 2000 to 2010, however, voucher concentration rose in the largest metro areas, even though most of those areas used 50th percentile FMRs for at least part of that period. Kirk McClure, Alex F. Schwartz, and Lydia B. Taghavi, “Housing Choice Voucher Location Patterns a Decade Later,” November, 2012, p 7. In 2010, 24 percent of vouchers in the 50 largest areas were used in tracts where at least 10 percent of households used vouchers, compared to 16 percent in 2000, p 7.

5 Areas may subsequently requalify for 50th percentile status after a 3-year period.

History of Small Area FMRs

Since the establishment of the 50th percentile program, HUD has developed Small Area FMRs to reflect rents in ZIP code based areas with a goal to improve HCV tenant outcomes. Small Area FMRs have been shown to be a more direct approach to encouraging tenant moves to housing in lower poverty areas by increasing the subsidy available in specific ZIP codes to support such moves.6 Since 2010, when the United States Census Bureau made available data collected over the first 5 years of the American Community Survey (ACS), HUD has considered various methodologies that would set FMRs at a more granular level. HUD's goal in pursuing the Small Area FMR methodology is to create more effective means for HCV tenants to move into higher opportunity, lower poverty areas by providing them with subsidy adequate to make such areas accessible and to thereby reduce the number of voucher families that reside in areas of high poverty concentration.

6 Please see Collinson and Ganong, “The Incidence of Housing Voucher Generosity”, available at: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2255799.

Toward this end, through a Federal Register notice published on May 18, 2010, at 75 FR 27808, HUD announced that in Fiscal Year (FY) 2011 it would seek to conduct a Small Area FMR demonstration project to determine the effectiveness of FMRs which are published using U.S. Postal Service ZIP codes as FMR areas within metropolitan areas. HUD also solicited public comment on the proposed demonstration. On November 20, 2012, at 77 FR 69651, HUD announced the commencement of the Small Area FMR Demonstration, for which advance notice was provided on May 18, 2010, and further announced the participation of the following PHAs: The Housing Authority of the County of Cook (IL), the City of Long Beach (CA) Housing Authority, the Chattanooga (TN) Housing Authority, the Town of Mamaroneck (NY) Housing Authority, and the Housing Authority of Laredo (TX).

Through a second Federal Register notice published on August 4, 2010, at 75 FR 46958, HUD mandated the use of Small Area FMRs in place of metropolitan-area-wide-FMRs to settle litigation in the Dallas, TX, HUD Metro FMR Area. Small Area FMRs have been in operation in Dallas, Texas, as part of a court settlement since 2010, and in a small number of PHAs since 2012.

HUD Proposals To Move to Small Area FMRs

On June 2, 2015, at 80 FR 31332, HUD published an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPR) entitled “Establishing a More Effective Fair Market Rent (FMR) System; Using Small Area Fair Market Rents (Small Area FMRs) in Housing Choice Voucher Program Instead of the Current 50th Percentile FMRs.” In this ANPR, HUD announced its intention to amend HUD's FMR regulations applicable to the HCV program to provide HCV tenants with subsidies that better reflect the localized rental market, including subsidies that would be relatively higher if they move into areas that potentially have better access to jobs, transportation, services, and educational opportunities. The ANPR sought public comment on the use of Small Area FMRs for the HCV program within certain metropolitan areas. HUD received 78 public comments in response to the ANPR.

On June 16, 2016, at 81 FR 39218, HUD published a proposed rule that require the use of Small Area FMRs in place of the 50th percentile rent to address high levels of voucher concentration. The proposed rule addressed the issues and suggestions raised by public commenters on the ANPR. (See 81 FR 39222 through 39224.) In addition to responding to public comments on the ANPR, HUD specifically requested comment on certain issues. (See 81 FR 39224 through 39226.) HUD received 113 comments on its June 16, 2016, proposed rule. The public comments can be found at https://www.regulations.gov/docket?D=HUD-2016-0063.

The significant issues raised by the public commenters and HUD's responses are provided in the following section of this preamble.

III. Discussion of Public Comments and HUD's Responses General Comments

Commenters were divided in their support for the rule. For those commenters that supported the rule they stated that this new methodology was long overdue because the current system was not working. Commenters stated that the current system was not working and HUD's proposal sounded like a good solution. Commenters stated that creating a system where cities, counties and municipalities could have a finer laser point on their rental markets could increase subsidy utilization rates and customer choice. The commenters stated that they highly recommended not only looking at the proposed methodologies but also collecting and refining more data from cities on their housing stock and availability. A commenter stated that setting FMRs for smaller areas is an ingenious solution because it will put an end to unnecessarily high subsidies in high poverty areas, and will gradually erode the legacy of segregation by giving HCV households more access to low-poverty neighborhoods. Another commenter stated that this FMR change is a welcome innovative step toward increasing housing choices for low-income individuals and families. Other commenters stated that the goal of the Small Area FMR rule will benefit people with disabilities by affording them better opportunities for integration into the community.

For those commenters that opposed the rule they offered the following concerns. A commenter stated HUD's proposal would result in Section 8 recipients in designated ZIP codes experiencing decreases in their subsidies, and these recipients would be obliged to increase their out-of-pocket share. Other commenters stated that research indicates low poverty rates are not 100 percent indicative of high opportunity areas. The commenters stated that given this information, Small Area FMRs are not an indicator of areas of opportunity and cannot be substituted for more robust mobility efforts resulting in poverty deconcentration, racial/ethnic deconcentration, and other positive outcomes associated with areas of opportunity. Other commenters similarly stated that voucher holders access to opportunity/higher market neighborhoods is only partially impacted by adequate payment standards. The commenters stated that while higher payment standards are essential this is not a solution to moving low-income families with children into opportunity neighborhoods. Commenters stated that HUD should not implement Small Area FMRs unless HUD revises the HCV funding formula to ensure that implementation of the rule does not result in fewer households being subsidized under the voucher program.

The following presents the specific issues that commenters raised on the proposed rule and HUD's responses.

Specific Comments

In the proposed rule, HUD sought comment on 13 specific areas presented below.

1. Should HUD provide for PBVs that are in the pipeline to continue using metropolitan FMRs even if the area is designated as a Small Area FMR area? Additionally, should HUD require newly proposed PBVs post Small Area FMR designation to use Small Area FMRs?

Comment: In response to the question of whether PBVs in the pipeline in a designated area, and newly proposed PBVs post-designation, should use Small Area FMRs, commenters expressed wide-ranging views. Many stated that applying Small Area FMRs to existing PBV projects or those in the pipeline could destabilize deals (e.g., impact their value for LIHTC allocation, etc.). Some commenters indicated Small Area FMRs would assist in placing PBV units in high opportunity areas and reduce incentives to develop units in high-poverty areas. Other commenters stated Small Area FMRs would not be high enough to achieve the goal of creating units in high opportunity areas. Some suggested Small Area FMRs should not apply to PBVs at all because PBVs are essential to revitalization and preservation strategies. In summary, commenters offered differing views: Some recommend PBVs be excluded entirely (with or without an opt-in provision); some recommend voluntary adoption for new or pipeline projects, and others advocate application to all new projects to encourage placement of PBVs in high opportunity areas. One commenter requested HUD remove the word “jurisdiction” in proposed § 888.113(h), to clarify that the new Small Area FMRs apply in any zip code where a PHA's voucher is placed in the metropolitan area.

HUD Response: HUD appreciates that PBVs relationship to FMRs is different than tenant-based vouchers; for example, PBVs are often used for preservation in low-income neighborhoods where the Small Area FMR would be lower than current FMRs—however, Small Area FMRs that are higher than current FMRs could help PBVs reach high opportunity neighborhoods. In the context of HUD's Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD), the use of Small Area FMRs for PBV may limit PHA options in terms of deciding whether PBV or PBRA is the appropriate choice for the RAD conversion.

Given the range and variation among public comments, and the range of uses of PBV within HUD's rental assistance programs, HUD is choosing to exempt all current and future PBVs from Small Area FMRs at this time. However, if a PHA is operating its tenant-based program under the Small Area FMRs, the PHA may apply Small Area FMRs to all future PBV projects if it establishes such a policy in its PHA administrative plan. In such a case, the PHA may also choose to also establish a policy that allows the PHA to apply the Small Area FMRs to current PBV projects, provided the owner is willing to mutually agree to do so. The application of the Small Area FMR to the PBV project must be prospective. The PHA and the PBV project owner operating under the Small Area FMRs may not subsequently choose to revert back to the metropolitan-wide FMR, regardless of whether the PHA subsequently changes its administrative policy to no longer apply Small Area FMRs to PBV projects. HUD believes this approach offers maximum flexibility for varied circumstances and HUD will closely monitor the results of the policy including for any fair housing or civil rights concerns.

HUD is also removing the term “jurisdiction” in § 888.113(h) for consistency since HUD provides approval to a “PHA” that requests to voluntarily use Small Area FMRs under 982.113(c) as opposed to a “PHA jurisdiction”.

2. The proposed rule provides for Small Area FMR area selection parameters to be codified in regulatory text. HUD is seeking comment on whether these parameters should be codified or should be incorporated into each annual proposed FMR notice to provide HUD, PHAs, and other stakeholders with flexibility, in any given fiscal year, to offer changes to these selection parameters and have the opportunity to comment before any changes to the parameters are made.

Comment: Some commenters proposed codifying area selection criteria with limited flexibility in the specific parameter values for reach (percentages, populations). They recommended HUD should codify the criteria for selecting Small Area FMR areas but the final regulations should allow HUD to revise the Small Area FMR criteria if necessary, through notice and opportunity for public comment, in the Federal Register. Commenters suggested this would be the way to ensure changes are guaranteed to fall under the informal administrative rulemaking process. However, other commenters preferred incorporating the parameters into the annual notice as a way to allow for comments and perhaps changes before final Small Area FMRs are issued for that year—enabling potential flexibility for changes on an annual basis. Commenters indicate that HUD should make clear whether Small Area FMRs designations are permanent.

HUD Response: In order to provide specificity to FMR users, and flexibility to HUD, the final rule codifies the definitions of selection parameters in regulatory text but will not include the specific values for these selection criteria in the regulatory text. The values of the selection parameters for the first round of Small Area FMR area selections are specified in a separate Federal Register notice published today. The values of selection parameters for subsequent Small Area FMR Area designations, which will be made every 5 years, will be specified through Federal Register notice with opportunity for public comment as new Small Area FMR designations are made. Further, once an area is selected to use Small Area FMRs, the selection is permanent. In future years, HUD intends to make additional selections based on updated information and different selection parameter values.

3. Several commenters to HUD's ANPR suggested that HUD provide for tenant rent protections in ZIP codes where the Small Area FMR is below the metropolitan area and tenants choose not to move. No additional tenant protections were instituted for tenants serviced by PHAs accepting HUD's invitation to participate in the Small Area FMR demonstration nor were additional tenant protections implemented for tenants living in the Dallas, TX HUD Metropolitan Area when Small Area FMRs were implemented there. However, as part of a transition strategy between Metropolitan FMRs and Small Area FMRs, HUD seeks comment on what additional policies or requirements the final rule should include that would mitigate the impact of significant and abrupt decreases in the FMRs for certain ZIP code areas on families currently under HAP contract in those impacted areas.

Comment: Commenters suggested a range of additional policies or requirements that would mitigate the impact of significant or abrupt decreases in the FMR for families currently in those areas. Many requested that HUD hold all current tenants harmless permanently if they remain in their same unit (or, as some suggested, neighborhood); others suggested until tenants move or remain for more than 5 years; and others still suggested hold harmless should only apply to certain populations. Commenters urged HUD to fund support mechanisms for impacted households, such as mobility counseling, training and guidance on reasonable accommodation procedures, and others. Some commenters stated that no additional protections were necessary. In addition, commenters also raised concerns about specific populations, exception payment standards, phasing in of payment standard reductions, and incorporation of vacancy rates; those comments are handled elsewhere in the response to comments within this preamble as other questions more directly focus on that content.

HUD Response: Based on the comments received, HUD agrees that it is important to protect tenants, and therefore, the following changes have been incorporated within this final rule. The final rule makes conforming regulatory changes in accordance with Section 107 of HOTMA, which provides PHAs with the option to establish an administrative policy that would hold harmless those families remaining in place from payment standard reductions that are currently required at the family's second annual recertification if the family's payment standard falls outside of the basic range as the result of a decrease in FMRs (including a decrease in FMR attributable to the implementation of Small Area FMRs). This will be done without requiring individual exception payment standard requests.

In addition, the final rule provides PHAs with the option to establish a new payment standard for families under HAP contract between the full “hold harmless” option provided under HOTMA and the new payment standard based on the Small Area FMR. Under this option, the PHA would have greater flexibility than what is afforded under HOTMA (which essentially requires the PHA to either hold the in-place families completely harmless or transition them to the new payment standard). This policy would allow the PHA to still achieve some budgetary flexibility by reducing the payment standard for families under HAP at the second reexamination, while ensuring the reduction in subsidy is modest and does not place families at risk of displacement.

The rule further extends these same flexibilities to the PHA if the payment standard decrease is not the result of a decrease in the FMR.

Finally, in order to ensure that a suitable amount of units remain available during the transition to Small Area FMRs, this final rule limits the annual decrease in Small Area FMRs to no more than 10 percent of the area's FMR in the prior fiscal year. That is, the current FMR may be no less than 90 percent of the area's FMR in the previous fiscal year. In addition, the final rule provides that HUD may approve exception payment standards for PHAs administering their HCV programs under Small Area FMRs for an individual ZIP code area in accordance with conditions and procedures set forth in a separate Federal Register notice as opposed to the normally applicable requirements at 982.503(c).

4. Related to question 3, HUD seeks comment on whether the final rule should limit the potential decline in the FMR for a ZIP code area resulting from the implementation of Small Area FMRs in order to ensure that sufficient housing opportunities remain available to voucher holders? If so, HUD seeks recommendations on specific policies or requirements that should be included in the final rule to achieve the desired outcome.

a. For example, an approach would be to allow the PHA to establish exception payment standards above the basic range for impacted ZIP code areas meeting certain conditions through a streamlined HUD approval process. One example of this may be that PHAs could have the discretion of setting their payment standards at up to 130 percent of the Small Area FMR in the 1st year of transition, at up to 120 percent of the Small Area FMR in the 2nd year of transition, and at up to 110 percent of the Small Area FMR in the 3rd and subsequent years following implementation.

b. With respect to protections for tenants currently under HAP contract, one possibility may be to increase the amount of time that the family is held harmless from a decrease in the payment standard. For instance, instead of the lower payment standard going into effect on the second reexamination following the effective date of the decrease in the payment standard, the final rule could provide that the lower payment standard would not go into effect for a family under HAP contract until a later re-examination (e.g., third, fourth, or fifth reexamination).

Comment: Many commenters urged HUD to provide flexibility for PHAs to set rent levels and to protect tenants served by PHAs that do not choose to hold tenants harmless as allowed under HOTMA. Commenters urged HUD to implement the provision in HOTMA that gives PHAs the discretion to hold harmless decreases in Small Area FMRs and FMRs for current tenants. Others suggested PHA-administered phase-ins and increased timeframes before decreases are required are not necessarily helpful, as such phase-ins and timeframes add to administrative tracking requirements and increase program audit risks for the administering agency, as well as cause confusion for residents and landlords.

Regarding the proposal in which PHAs could have exception payment standards above the basic range, some commenters embraced the proposal; however, others felt it would not go far enough, and only delay the onset of rent burdens. Compared to a Small Area FMR phase-in, some commenters suggested it would protect fewer families since it is likely that only some PHAs would implement the higher payment standards. Other commenters suggested HUD could permit PHAs to set payment standards for eligible voucher holders that fall anywhere between the Small Area FMR and the metro-level FMR. Commenters also suggested that HUD limit the amount the FMR or payment standard could fall below metropolitan FMRs each year. Suggestions offered by the commenters ranged from suggesting Small Area FMRs be set no lower than 90-95 percent of the metropolitan FMR, no lower than 80-90 percent the second year, and so on in 5 percent or 10 percent increments.

Some commenters supported limiting annual FMR reductions by 3 percent or 5 percent, while others suggested the decreases should occur over a 5-year instead of a 3-year period (for all areas, or for only those areas that decrease by more than 10 percent), or the total drop be no more than 5 percent. Other commenters suggested changes included removing or increasing the cap on Small Area FMR values.

Regarding the proposal to increase the amount of time that the family is held harmless from a decrease in the payment standard, some commenters suggested HUD hold the rent harmless until at least the fifth reexamination following implementation of Small Area FMRs. Other commenters stated that if HUD implements the HOTMA payment standard provision, there would be no need to implement a hold harmless provision that holds payment standards harmless in the third, fourth, or fifth reexamination.

HUD Response: As noted above, the final rule implements a number of tenant protection policies: First, the final rule conforms the regulation in accordance with Section 107 of HOTMA, which provides PHAs with the option to maintain an in-place family's current payment standard at a level above a payment standard at the top of the basic range of the a new, lower FMR. Second, the final rule further provides PHAs with the option to establish a new payment standard for families under the HAP contract between the full “hold harmless” option provided under HOTMA and a payment standard based on the basic range of the new lower Small Area FMR. It is noted that the rule also extends these same flexibilities to the PHA in cases where the payment standard decrease is not a result of a decrease in the FMR.

The rule maintains that in cases where the PHA will apply a decrease in the payment standard to families during the term of the HAP contract, the earliest that the PHA may apply the initial reduction to the payment standard amount is the second regular reexamination following the effective date of the change in the payment standard amount. This provides at minimum a family with no less than the amount of time previously provided under the regulations before a reduction in the payment standard may take effect during the term of the family's HAP contract. The final rule also provides the PHA with the administrative flexibility to further reduce the payment standard for the families that remain under HAP contract if the PHA wishes to gradually reduce or eliminate the difference between the family's payment standard and the normally applicable payment standard on the PHA's payment standard schedule over time.

HUD notes that section 78001 of the Fixing America's Surface Transportation Act (or FAST Act), amended the 1937 Act to allow PHAs to undertake full income reexaminations for families with 90 percent or more of their income from fixed-income sources every three years instead of annually. HUD recognizes that implementation of this change in the frequency of reexaminations may have significant ramifications in terms of when a decrease in a payment standard could take effect during the term of the HAP contract for some families given that under this rule the decrease may not take effect until the second regulation reexamination. Rather than try to incorporate changes to the tenant protection provisions of this rule in anticipation of those potential complications, HUD will instead consider if any changes are necessary as part of the forthcoming rule-making for implementation of those FAST Act provisions.

The final rule further provides that the PHA may establish different policies regarding how decreases in payment standards will apply during the term of the HAP contract for designated areas within their jurisdiction (e.g., for different zip code areas). However, the PHA must apply the same policies to all families under HAP contract within that designated area.

Fourth, controlling for extremely large decreases in FMRs, the final rule protects families, by limiting the maximum amount the FMR may decrease year over year to 10 percent of the prior year's FMR for the area. This protection applies to all tenants—families under HAP contract, current participants that either want or are required to move to new units, and families from the waiting list who are issued vouchers to begin their initial housing search, and to metropolitan and non-metropolitan county FMRs.

Fifth, the final rule permits a PHA that is administering its HCV program under the Small Area FMRs to request and HUD to approve exception payment standards for a ZIP Code Area under the conditions and procedures set forth in a Federal Register Notice instead of the requirements under 982.503(c). This will allow HUD to establish a process by which a PHA may request and receive approval to establish an exception payment standard promptly for a ZIP Code area if necessary to react to rapidly changing market conditions or to ensure sufficient rental units are available for voucher families.

5. The proposed rule adds a new paragraph (i) to § 888.113 to address the transition of metropolitan areas that were previously subject to 50th percentile FMRs. HUD believes that the Small Area FMR methodology will provide HCV tenants with greater access to areas of opportunity than metropolitan area wide 50th percentile FMRs. As a result, this rule proposes that a 50th percentile metropolitan area designated for Small Area FMRs would transition to Small Area FMRs on the effective date of the Small Area FMR designation. HUD is also proposing that a 50th percentile FMR area that is not designated for Small Area FMRs would remain under 50th percentile FMRs until the end of the existing 3-year period for the 50th percentile FMRs prior to reverting to the standard 40th percentile FMRs. The rule does not eliminate provisions that permit a PHA with jurisdiction in a 50th percentile FMR area that reverts to the standard 40th percentile FMR to request HUD approval of payment standard amounts based on the 50th percentile rent in accordance with the existing § 982.503(f); however, HUD is specifically seeking comment on whether this provision should be eliminated in order to phase out the use of 50th percentile rents for deconcentration purposes. HUD would also appreciate comments as to whether or not the current SEMAP deconcentration standard is appropriate as the basis for PHAs requesting HUD to approve payment standards based on 50th percentile rents under existing § 982.503(f). HUD is specifically seeking comment on these proposed polices, as well as suggestions for alternative approaches or other recommendations on how best to phase-out 50th percentile rent FMRs for impacted metropolitan areas and transition the area to either the Small Area FMRs or the standard metropolitan-wide 40th percentile FMRs.

Comment: Commenters responses to this issue varied. Some commenters requested continuation of the 50th percentile policy in its entirely (including expanding it so that all FMRs would be set at the 50th percentile). Other commenters recommended it be optional if areas proved successful deconcentration using it, and others recommended phasing out 50th percentile rents altogether. Some commenters responded that the SEMAP standard should be considered an appropriate basis for PHAs to request payment standards based on the 50th percentile until such time as the Section Eight Management Assessment Program (SEMAP) provision for deconcentration is modified. Others commented that if HUD allows agencies that earn the SEMAP deconcentration bonus to retain 50th percentile FMRs, it should also require such agencies to demonstrate that retaining 50th percentile FMRs would be more effective in enabling voucher holders to live in high-opportunity areas than adopting Small Area FMRs. and others still indicated that before determining this, HUD should clarify proposed mobility factors of SEMAP reform.

HUD Response: It is impractical to maintain both 50th percentile FMRs and Small Area FMRs as the FMR tools that HUD provides to help deconcentrate voucher tenants in metropolitan areas. However, HUD recognizes that some PHAs have attained deconcentration success using 50th percentile FMRs. Therefore, as in the proposed rule, the final rule provides that current 50th percentile areas that are designated for Small Area FMR usage will transition to using Small Area FMRs when Small Area FMRs become effective and areas not designated for Small Area FMR usage will remain 50th percentile areas until the end of their 3-year designated period and then will revert to 40th percentile areas. PHAs operating in 50th percentile areas that do not convert to Small Area FMR areas and do not choose to opt-in to using Small Area FMRs may follow the procedures available at 24 CFR 982.503(f) to apply to continue to use payment standards based on 50th percentile rents.

6. HUD is specifically seeking comment on how to reduce the administrative burden on PHAs and simplify the transition to Small Area FMRs. For example, HUD is proposing to change the percentage decrease in FMRs that triggers rent reasonableness redeterminations from 5 percent to 10 percent for Small Area FMR PHAs. HUD requests comments, however, regarding whether 10 percent is the right trigger for program-wide rent reasonableness redetermination, whether HUD should limit this proposal to Small Area FMR decreases, or also change the percentage of decrease that triggers rent reasonableness for all FMRs, and whether it should revise the trigger for program-wide rent reasonableness redeterminations at all. In regards to potentially expanding the 10 percent trigger for rent reasonableness redetermination to a program-wide requirement, HUD seeks comments on the trade-offs between administrative relief and decreased program oversight on rent levels. HUD also requests comments on what other changes would reduce the potential administrative burden and complexity for PHAs impacted by the implementation of Small Area FMRs.

Comment: Commenters emphasized that that Small Area FMRs and other recent programmatic changes represent increased administrative burden. Many commenters supported increasing the threshold at which an FMR decline triggers a rent reasonableness redetermination from 5 percent to 10 percent as a way to reduce that burden. However, others recommended changing the trigger from 5 percent to 35 percent and allowing the PHA to make that change through their annual plan process. Some commenters opposed changing the standard altogether. Other commenters stated that they do not believe a change from 5 percent to 10 percent is enough to reduce administrative burden sufficiently given the number of rent redeterminations expected from the transition to Small Area FMRs.

Aside from whether and at what level to change the trigger, some commenters recommended this be program-wide, and not just for Small Area FMRs. Commenters urged HUD to issue updated rent reasonableness guidance—including for high opportunity neighborhoods to avoid methods disallowing rents if the methods do not adequately consider location. Commenters also urged HUD to require PHAs to be transparent with the data used to perform the analysis and make it publicly available.

Other commenters urged HUD to publish new FMRs and Small Area FMRs far in advance of their effective date to avoid requiring PHAs to redo redeterminations. Commenters asked HUD to provide at least six months after publication of Small Area FMR designations before they are required to have Small Area FMR-based payment standards in place.

Some commenters raised concerns about increasing the trigger for PBV because it would trigger rent reasonable studies that result in a significant loss of income to owners of PBV contracts. The commenters stated that for properties in which this income was assumed as part of initial financing or refinancing, the property is likely to become financially unstable and unable to meet its obligations. Other commenters stated that aside from rent reasonableness, the increased administrative costs of administering Small Area FMRs come at a time when PHAs are not being paid fully to administer the HCV program.

HUD Response: Based on public comment, HUD agrees that a reduction in administrative burden is necessary. Therefore, HUD is adopting the proposed rule provisions which change the required rent reasonableness review standard from a 5 percent to a 10 percent decrease in the FMR. This change would apply not just to voucher units in Small Area FMR areas but to units in all FMR areas. Moreover, the final rule implements a policy that limits the annual decrease in FMRs (including Small Area FMRs). This change is being implemented in response to comments on the need for additional tenant protections, but should also provide some administrative relief to PHAs by having more certainty around the path of Small Area FMRs within areas where the Small Area FMR is below the metropolitan FMR as well as FMR decreases more generally.

7. HUD is currently proposing, through this rulemaking, to expand the use of Small Area FMRs within the HCV program. HUD seeks public comment as to whether or not other HUD rental assistance programs would benefit from using Small Area FMRs in their operations. For example, would the rental assistance component of the Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) programs be a candidate for Small Area FMR treatment? Frequently, metropolitan FMRs are inadequate for HOPWA-assisted tenants to find units near health care facilities, or in neighborhoods with better job opportunities. Should the HOPWA program regulations be amended to allow participating jurisdictions the flexibility to set tenant-based assistance rents according to Small Area FMRs either in areas that would be designated Small Area FMR areas or for the HOPWA program more generally? Would other HUD programs benefit as well?

Comment: Commenters responses to this issue were varied. Some commenters were against expansion to any other program, and some urged HUD to wait until Small Area FMRs could be studied more fully. Other commenters stated that they believed new tenants in tenant-based rental assistance programs could benefit from Small Area FMRs (e.g., HOPWA, CoC Rental Assistance, Legacy Shelter Plus Care program, HOME tenant-based rental assistance,). The commenters that recommended expansion to other programs stated that applying the same Small Area FMR scheme would be less burdensome on PHAs and landlords than multiple standards.

HUD Response: HUD appreciates the suggestions, but at this time, due the myriad of programs and program rules, it is beyond the scope of this rulemaking to make changes to these programs; therefore, HUD is proceeding solely with implementation of Small Area FMRs for the HCV program, which includes traditional vouchers and special purpose vouchers. HUD will consider the comments received for future rulemaking or other program implementation strategies for the various programs as the opportunity arises.

8. As currently proposed, the Small Area FMR policy would apply to all residents within a ZIP code who receive housing vouchers. HUD seeks comment on whether there are certain situations or any specific groups of voucher recipients within the general population, such as persons with disabilities or elderly voucher recipients, where an alternate policy should apply that should exempt them from having their voucher level change as a result of this policy due to specific hardships they may encounter by having to choose between staying in their current area and receiving a smaller voucher or moving to a new area for the sake of obtaining a larger voucher?

Comment: Many commenters urged HUD to hold all existing tenants harmless, and if HUD declined to do this, to hold disabled and elderly tenants harmless.

HUD Response: In response to the commenters request that HUD hold disabled and elderly tenants harmless under this policy, HUD is prohibited from treating one or more protected class differently under the Fair Housing Act and other civil rights requirements, absent statutory authority. HUD in this rule is implementing robust tenant protections for all tenants, including those enacted in HOTMA, as outlined earlier in this preamble. HUD will study the specific impact on elderly and disabled voucher recipients as a result of this rule change to determine if additional policy changes are necessary.

9. Are there specific groups within the general population of voucher holders for whom this policy change would be particularly burdensome? What are the ways in which this policy change could create a disproportionate burden on certain groups like elderly and disabled voucher holders?

Comment: Commenters stated that there are specific groups of voucher holders for whom this policy change would be particularly burdensome. The commenters stated that these specific groups include the elderly, people with disabilities, and families with children. Commenters raised the concern that each group could face increased housing cost burdens, displacement, prohibitively expensive moves, and homelessness. Other commenters raised the concern that all tenants may have chosen their current location based on community, religious, medical, service provider, and social networks.

Specifically, certain commenters stated that tenants with disabilities may not be able to find accessible units in higher rent neighborhoods and may face limited public transportation options. They may also face discrimination in these areas. Commenters stated that it is insufficient to suggest that these tenants are not at risk because they can request reasonable accommodation. The commenters stated that many people do not know enough about their rights to request the accommodation and will not be informed of them by landlords seeking higher payments. The commenters further stated that responding to requests for accommodations from a significant portion of voucher holders may be administratively burdensome for HUD. Specific recommendations from commenters focused exception payment standards (EPS) in which HUD should (1) notify all tenants who will experience a reduced payment standard of their right to a reasonable accommodation based on disability, (2) identify tenants, based on their participant file, who might be entitled to an EPS based on disability and take affirmative steps to accommodate them, and (3) publish additional guidance with the final rule that directs PHAs to allow EPS as a reasonable accommodation in any instance when a voucher family will experience a disability-related hardship as a result of being forced to pay over 30 percent of their income in rent or move.

Commenters stated that elderly tenants may also share similar challenges finding accessible units, and that stability in a neighborhood may be more of an opportunity than mobility. Commenters also suggested families with children may be adversely impacted, as having a large number of children can act as a barrier to being able to find suitable housing. Commenters stated that families report longer search times and far fewer options.

HUD Response: HUD agrees that the concerns raised by the commenters pose serious challenges for the specific populations raised above. As such, the final rule implements robust tenant protections for all tenants and a lengthened transition to full Small Area FMR implementation as outlined earlier in this preamble. In addition, the final rule clarifies that reasonable accommodation requests may include exception payment standards of more than 120 percent of the published FMR, consistent with HOTMA. Consistent with current practice, for such requests, the focus of HUD's review will be on the exception payment standard requested by the PHA.

10. HUD is seeking comment on the criteria that HUD selected for determining which metropolitan areas should be impacted by the shift to a Small Area FMR instead of the current 50th percentile policy. Did HUD use the correct criteria in making these choices? What other criteria should HUD be using to select metropolitan areas that will be impacted by this rule change and why are those criteria important?

Comment: Commenters provided a range of responses on many topics, outlined below:

• Vacancy: Many commenters urged HUD to factor in vacancy data into the formula. Their recommendations included:

○ Excluding low vacancy markets (those with a 4 percent, 5 percent or 6 percent vacancy rates).

○ Allow PHAs with low vacancy rates to opt out of Small Area FMRs, even if they meet HUD's criteria, and require PHAs with low vacancy rates that choose to adopt Small Area FMRs to hold current tenants harmless.

○ Exempt low vacancy areas from decreases in authorized Section 8 rent levels for existing tenants; Small Area FMRs should be implemented only for new tenants (or existing tenants who move) in these areas.

• Revising the formula

○ Considering relative voucher concentration by measuring the difference—rather than the ratio—between the voucher and renter concentration shares. HUD should use the criteria that there must be at least a 15 percent difference between renter and voucher holder concentration in low-income areas.

○ Compare voucher concentration to the distribution of all housing units rather than just rental units.

○ Reduce the required proportion of rental units in areas over 110 percent of the regional FMR to 17 percent, to capture more of our most deeply segregated metro areas. An alternative approach would prioritize metropolitan areas with the highest proportion of families with young children living in concentrated poverty neighborhoods.

○ Lower this threshold for the share of rental units in ZIP codes with Small Area FMRs above 110 percent of the metro FMR at least to 15 percent.

○ Change criterion to better target metropolitan areas in which overall segregation is the highest, with less focus on concentration of voucher households in high poverty areas relative to other renters.

• Exclusions and other comments

○ Commenters also suggested that, in order not to impede PHAs whose program management has already resulted in participants living in higher opportunity/lower poverty areas, HUD should require adoption of Small Area FMRs only by those PHAs in Metro areas meeting the Small Area FMR designation criteria whose percentage of voucher holders living in concentrated low-income areas relative to all renters in concentrated low-income areas over the entire Metro FMR area exceeds 155 percent.

○ The use of Qualified Census Tracts (QCTs) in the criteria for designating Small Area FMR areas is inappropriate. In the LIHTC program, the purpose of QCTs is to increase the supply of affordable housing in these areas. It is contradictory to incentivize the construction of affordable rental units in certain areas on the one hand, and use Small Area FMRs to move residents out of those areas on the other.

○ In addition to modifying the criteria, HUD should also revise the proposed regulation to give itself flexibility to designate highly segregated areas as Small Area FMR areas if it concludes that this is needed to further fair housing.

HUD Response: While SAFMRs may be a useful tool for expanding choice and providing voucher holders with access to more units in opportunity areas, public comments on the proposed rule raised concerns with HUD's knowledge of how well SAFMRs will work in areas experiencing low vacancy rates. HUD agrees that areas with extremely low vacancy rates are indicative of rental markets in disequilibrium and the final rule includes additional selection criterion to those provided in the proposed rule. In order for the rental housing market to function in an orderly manner, there needs to be an ample supply of available vacant units. Once the vacancy rate falls below a certain percentage, typically when the quantity of units demanded exceeds the quantity of units supplied, this places upward pressure on rental prices. The solution is typically the creation of additional supply; however, in the short run, a market clearing price is harder to achieve and the rental market ceases to function normally. Therefore, the final rule includes vacancy rate as an additional selection criterion to those provided in the proposed rule. Commenters provided varied feedback on the level of vacancy for which areas should be excluded from Small Area FMR designation. The American Community Survey (ACS) provides the most comprehensive data measuring rental vacancies across all metropolitan areas; however, due to the manner in which vacancies are assessed in the ACS, as detailed in the Regulatory Impact Analysis of this rule, HUD research indicates that ACS based vacancy rates tend to underrepresent the actual level of vacancies across most markets; consequently, the final rule excludes any metropolitan area with an ACS based vacancy rate of 4 percent or lower from designation as a Small Area FMR designated area as a 4 percent vacancy rate measured by the ACS is roughly equivalent to an actual vacancy rate of 5 percent under reasonable assumptions.

While HUD believes the criterion should remain focused on voucher concentration rather than residential segregation, HUD also agrees with commenters that the voucher concentration criterion should be improved to better target communities where voucher concentration is most severe. Consequently, in addition to the voucher concentration ratio included in the proposed rule, the final rule also requires the numerator of this measure, the concentration of voucher holders within concentrated low income areas, to meet a minimum standard level (25 percent).

HUD notes the other suggestions made by commenters and will evaluate program effects including access to neighborhoods with better employment opportunities, better schools, lower crime rates and lower racial and ethnic isolation to inform any future expansion of the program.

11. The proposed rule makes no changes to 24 CFR 888.113(g), the FMR for Manufactured home space rental for voucher tenants that own manufactured housing units. Under this proposed rule Small Area FMRs would apply to manufactured home space rentals in areas designated for Small Area FMRs (i.e., FMRs for space rentals would be set at 40 percent of the 2-bedroom Small Area FMR). Given the costly nature of moving a manufactured home, HUD is seeking comment on whether or not current voucher holders using their voucher for a manufactured home space should be exempt from Small Area FMRs at their current address?

Comment: Most commenters suggested HUD should exempt manufactured home space rental from Small Area FMRs wholesale. Others suggested an exemption for existing voucher holders so long as the voucher holder remains at the current address. Some suggested HUD exempt only when the Small Area FMR is lower than the metro FMR; some pointed out that voucher holders in ZIP codes where the payment standard will increase under Small Area FMR should be permitted to benefit from the increased payment standard. Others commented that Small Area FMRs should be voluntary altogether, including for those areas which may have vouchers for manufactured home space. Manufactured homes are often limited by local regulation to particular sites. Residents should not be penalized in subsidy available to support their housing choice based on the ZIP code location of allowable manufactured home sites.

HUD Response: Based on public comment, the final rule exempts vouchers used to subsidize the rent of a manufactured home space from the use of Small Area FMRs.

12. HUD has proposed to amend the Exception Payment Standard rules at 24 CFR 982.503 to account for the fact that FMR areas in Small Area FMR designated metropolitan areas will be ZIP codes. HUD is seeking public comment to determine if there are other amendments HUD should make to the Exception Payment Standard Regulations to better facilitate the approval process of Exception Payment Standards. For example, the current exception payment standard regulations require that an exception payment standard may not include more than 50 percent of the population of the FMR area. This may be an impractical requirement when determining exception payment standards within a ZIP code. Similarly, given that ZIP codes more narrowly define the FMR area, the provision within the regulation that program justification may include helping families find housing outside areas of high poverty may not be applicable even though an exception payment standard may be necessary. Therefore, HUD is soliciting feedback to ensure that the exception payment standard regulations are revised so that PHAs may use this component of the regulations to optimize the administration of their HCV programs.

Comment: Some commenters offered that under Small Area FMRs, EPSs become much less necessary, other than to group neighborhoods into payment standard buckets to simplify program administration and limit significant volatility between years.

Specific requests of commenters included eliminating the population cap that prevents more than 50 percent of an area to be covered by an EPS, and clarify that that exception rents may exceed 150 percent of Small Area FMR. Commenters also suggested HUD clarify how exceptions will work for Census tracts and other small geographic areas. Some commenters suggested EPS should be available up to 130 percent in the first two years of the program; others request up to 150 percent of the FMR. Another commenter stated that HUD should publish additional guidance with the final rule that directs PHAs to allow EPS as a reasonable accommodation in any instance when a voucher family will experience hardship or pay over 30 percent of their income in rent.

Commenters recommended that PHAs be able to set a payment standard up to 120 percent of the FMR without requesting HUD approval. Other suggested eliminating the distinction between exceptions above and below 120 percent of FMR, as the differences and processes are complex. If they are kept separate, commenters suggested HUD should revise the regulation for 110-120 percent to eliminate the requirements that PHAs submit information other than data on market rents or inability to secure housing and, for standards below the basic range, rent burdens. If HUD retains the requirement that increases above 120 percent prevent financial hardship, it is crucial that HUD revise the regulation or provide guidance making clear that this includes potential hardship that deters families from moving to the exception area in the first place.

As far as the process, overall, commenters requested streamlined processes, clear guidance and an expedited path for approvals that is standardized across local HUD offices and HUD headquarters. Some commenters suggested a system in which HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research obtains data from local housing authority rent reasonable databases to immediately grant exception payment standards that will support the utilization of vouchers and prevent families from falling into homelessness or remain homeless. Commenters suggested allowing exception payment standards to remain in place for a prolonged period without PHA action. HUD could review existing exception every so many years.

HUD Response: This final rule addresses the operation of exception payment standards with respect to Small Area FMRs. Specifically, the rule allows PHAs to request exception payment standards within ZIP codes. Additionally, for the purposes of exception payment standards within the context of Small Area FMRs, the final rule removes the 50 percent population cap for exception payment standards within ZIP codes. Furthermore, HUD is also simplifying the procedures for PHAs not using Small Area FMRs to run their HCV program. The final rule provides that PHAs in non-Small Area FMR areas may request an exception payment standard from the HUD Field Office of up to 110 percent of the relevant Small Area FMR with no additional supporting information. Finally, as noted earlier the final rule provides that HUD may approve a request by a PHA administering the HCV program under the Small Area FMRs for an exception payment standard for a ZIP Code area in accordance with the conditions and procedures set forth in a Federal Register Notice as opposed to the formerly applicable requirements under 982.503(c). This will allow HUD to establish a streamlined and responsive process for Small Area FMR ZIP Code area exception payment standard requests.

HUD has decided against proposing comprehensive changes to its EPS regulations at this time due to the implementation of Small Area FMRs and the potential to learn from PHA experiences with their adoption and operation. The suggestions offered through the public comment process will however be taken into consideration whenever HUD does revisit its EPS regulations.

13. HUD makes administrative data for research into HUD's programs available in a variety of ways (i.e., Public Use Microdata Sample—PUMS data, Research Partnerships, and Data License Agreements). HUD seeks comment on what additional data or dissemination strategies would be helpful to the public to assess the impact of the implementation of the Small Area FMR proposed rule.

Comment: Commenters requested both data and dissemination at the federal and PHA levels. They include:

• PUMS data set should include geographic identifiers for the census tract and ZIP code tabulation area, and HUD Fair Market Rent Metro Areas (HMFAs), so researchers can incorporate neighborhood information from, for example, the American Community Survey. Because HMFAs often diverge from OMBs definitions of metropolitan areas, it would also be helpful to append key HMFA-level variables (poverty rate, median gross rent, income, etc.) to the microdata.

• Number of voucher landlords and units associated with those landlords by ZIP code to which PHAs provide access to new voucher holders. This data is public, but not easily available or centralized.

• Ensure assessments of fair housing provide data at the ZIP code level.

• Study the impact the rule has on households' ability to use their voucher within the allowable time.

• Data from the evaluation of the Small Area FMR demonstration.

• List of ZIP codes by jurisdiction and the associated FMR rather than a list at the level of metropolitan area.

• All data used in the formula to designate the areas required to implement Small Area FMRs

• Data on whether increases to FMR for higher rent neighborhoods effectuates an increase in leasing activity in these neighborhoods.

• External evaluation of the Small Area FMR implementation parallel to implementation.

• Data not only for designated Small Area FMR areas and PHAs that opt in, but also for other areas and PHAs in order to allow comparison:

○ Number of voucher holders by ZIP code including relevant data on race, ethnicity, disability status and other factors relevant to fair housing concerns.;

○ Voucher success rates by PHA (if available and reliable); PHAs should report the average time it takes to lease-up for new and continuing voucher participants (who continue in their current jurisdiction or attempt to port their voucher);

○ Voucher turnover rates; to assess the impact of Small Area FMRs on program participants, it is essential that data is collected on the number of participants leaving and entering the program each year;

○ Voucher program exit and new admission rates by PHA;

○ Number of voucher holders with rent burdens at various levels (30 percent of income or less, 31-40 percent, 41-50 percent, and so forth) by PHA or by ZIP code;

○ Number of units on lists provided to families issued vouchers, broken down by ZIP code and PHA.

• Technical Assistance opportunities for impacted landlords and beneficiaries to understand the policy revisions and rationales.

• Information on what strategies PHAs used in conjunction with the Small Area FMRs.

• HUD should determine and publicize what payment standards PHAs use, and make this information available to help HCV households with their housing search.

○ Publicly Available ZIP-Code-Level Counts of Voucher Holders and Their Race: Currently, HUD makes the number of voucher holders in a particular area available in two ways: (1) On HUD's Open Data Web site and (2) as part of the underlying data used in the AFH Data and Mapping Tool. Both give voucher counts on the Census tract level, while the latter source includes a count of the number of non-white voucher holders in each tract. Although HUD releases a crosswalk file that matches Census tracts and ZIP Code Tabulation Areas (ZCTAs), the process of converting HUD's tract-level data to ZCTAs is complex and riddled with potential for errors. Since Small Area FMRs use ZCTAs, not Census tracts, as the primary unit of analysis, HUD should release voucher counts at the ZCTA level in order to evaluate the impact of Small Area FMRs. The data made available by race will also allow evaluation of how the Small Area FMR rule impacts jurisdictions' AFFH obligations.

• Whether increasing available asking rents impact local land use decisions.

• Data on total tenant payments by age group over the course of voucher lease-up and through Small Area FMR transitions, payment standard changes by housing agencies within Small Area FMR areas, and the use and value of PBVs.

• Availability of health services in new/old neighborhoods, the rate at which households retain their vouchers in new/old neighborhoods, and the financial costs of moving beyond rent payments (transportation, deposits, etc.).

HUD Response: HUD thanks the public for these helpful comments, and will take these recommendations under advisement. HUD does not need to undertake rulemaking to release additional data or information but does need to carefully consider the ramifications and disclosure issues associated with many of the suggestions. As HUD determines what additional information is releasable, HUD will continue to post Small Area FMR-relevant data online at https://www.huduser.gov/portal/datasets/fmr/smallarea/index.html.

Comment: Commenters provided a vast array of requests through this question that support a variety of objectives:

• The ability to assess the efficacy of Small Area FMRs.

• The ability to do additional research into the Housing Choice Voucher program.

• The ability to better administer the Housing Choice Voucher program.

HUD Response: Within the context of the final rule, HUD will release Small Area FMRs accompanied by both the minimum and maximum basic range amounts (90 percent and 110 percent) for each bedroom unit count Small Area FMR. HUD will further sort the ZIP code based Small Area FMRs for each metropolitan area from least to greatest to facilitate PHAs wishing to group multiple ZIP codes together into Payment Standard regions. HUD is taking the rest of these recommendations under advisement and will continue to post Small Area FMR-relevant data online at https://www.huduser.gov/portal/datasets/fmr/smallarea/index.html.

Other Comments

Commenters provided a variety of other comments regarding the proposed rule. Two of these topic areas include Moving To Work (MTW) PHAs, and comments on the methods for calculating FMRs.

Issue: Moving To Work (MTW) PHAs and the use of Small Area FMRs.

Comment: Commenters asked HUD to clarify whether or not MTW PHAs operating in metropolitan areas designated for Small Area FMR usage will have to use Small Area FMRs.

HUD Response: The proposed Rule pointed out that MTW PHAs have the ability to set alternative rent policies, outside of the standard regulations governing the use of FMRs in setting payment standards with approval from HUD. To clarify, MTW PHAs administering the HCV program can exercise flexibility in regards to establishing rent in accordance with the terms of their respective MTW Agreement and approved Annual MTW Plan. If an MTW PHA has not exercised flexibility through their Annual MTW Plan, the Small Area FMR requirements set forth in this Final Rule will apply to the MTW PHA, and the MTW PHA will be required to use Small Area FMRs in place of metropolitan-wide FMRs if the PHA jurisdiction is located within a designated Small Area FMR metropolitan area.

Issue: Methodology for Calculations of Metropolitan Fair Market Rents and Small Area Fair Market Rents.

Comment: Several commenters provided HUD with unsolicited feedback regarding the methods that HUD uses to calculate metropolitan-wide and Small Area FMRs. Several commenters suggested that HUD should modify the process HUD uses to calculate FMRs to be more reflective of market rents.

Overall FMR concerns: Many commenters discussed concerns regarding overall FMRs, including data lags and gap between local rents that will be embedded into Small Area FMRs.

• Specific suggestions included:

○ Fine tuning current formula to include rent variations for different bedroom size units, and ensuring that the five-year American Community Survey is keeping pace with actual rents in each ZIP code, particularly in the targeted metro areas, and to make upward adjustments as needed.

○ Alter the current FMR methodology to account for trends in local rental markets; cease using the “Trend Factor” to calculate FMRs, which measures the forecasted changes in national gross rents, and instead use the percentage change in metropolitan area-wide rents published as part of HUD PD&R's quarterly U.S. Housing Market Conditions Regional Reports.

• Revising the formula

○ Some commenters urged HUD to adopt a methodology for calculating Small Area FMRs that would better ensure access to 40% of units in all ZCTAs.

○ Urged consideration of methodology other than ZIP codes, such as independent analyses of local housing submarkets. ZIP codes may be too large to get desired impact.

○ Calculate 40th-percentile rents with data specific to different unit sizes (rather than indexing the rents to the 2-bedroom units),

○ Rely upon local rather than national CPI data in order to trend FMRs forward

HUD Response: HUD appreciates the breadth of comments provided to HUD regarding the methods used to calculate FMRs (both metropolitan-wide and Small Area FMRs). As stated earlier in the response to comments, in this final rule HUD is implementing a floor on the amount that FMRs can decrease from year to year. This is being done to provide in-place tenants with an additional element of subsidy protection during the transition from metropolitan FMRs to Small Area FMRs. Additionally, limiting the annual decrease in FMRs will help ensure a sufficient supply of affordable units during the transition to both existing tenants who wish to move and new voucher families entering the market. The final rule does not otherwise affect the data or methods HUD uses to estimate FMRs or Small Area FMRs. Due to provisions within HOTMA, HUD will be publishing Federal Register notices of proposed material changes in the methods for calculating FMRs for public comment before these changes are incorporated into the calculation of FMRs. HUD will respond to comments on FMR methodology provided in response to the proposed Small Area FMR rule as well as the notice announcing Fiscal Year 2017 FMRs in an upcoming Notice of Proposed Material Change in FMRs.

Issue: Rulemaking is premature.

Comment: A commenter stated that given that demonstrations of this idea in five locations are well underway, HUD's proposal is premature. The commenter stated that demonstrations have the admirable purpose of working out the problems that occur even with proposals that are highly meritorious in general terms before implementing them at large scale.

HUD Response: While HUD acknowledges that more information on the overall effects of the Small Area FMR approach will be forthcoming when the results of the Small Area FMR demonstration are available to inform broad policy, HUD believes that it is not premature to implement Small Area FMRs on this limited basis in those areas where it has the potential to address significant voucher concentration concerns. Through this final rule, HUD seeks not only to employ a better tool than the 50th percentile policy to expand housing opportunities for families where voucher concentration is a particular challenge but to also provide PHAs with the administrative flexibility to implement appropriate tenant protections to families currently under HAP contract and to address changing market conditions.

Issue: Continuation in Small Area FMRs in the Dallas, TX HUD Metro FMR Area.

Comment: A commenter noted that the Dallas, TX HUD Metro FMR Area, which has been operating under Small Area FMRs since 2010 pursuant to a court settlement, was very close to the thresholds for inclusion as a Small Area FMR area, and raised concerns that it might be excluded from continuing as a Small Area FMR area in the final rule or in the future.

HUD Response: While the final rule establishes a permanent Small Area FMR program, the final does not void the settlement agreement by which PHAs in the Dallas, TX HUD Metro FMR Area are required to operate with Small Area FMRs. PHAs in the Dallas TX, HUD Metro FMR Area will continue to be required to operate using Small Area FMRs in accordance with this final rule. The final rule contains no provisions for discontinuing Small Area FMRs once they have been implemented for a FMR Area.

IV. Findings and Certifications Regulatory Planning and Review

OMB reviewed this final rule under Executive Order 12866 (entitled “Regulatory Planning and Review”). This rulemaking was determined to be an “economically significant regulatory action,” as defined in section 3(f)(1) of the order. The accompanying Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA) for this rulemaking addresses the costs and benefits that would result from implementation of this final rule and the RIA can be found at http://www.regulations.gov.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1531-1538) (UMRA) establishes requirements for federal agencies to assess the effects of their regulatory actions on state, local, and tribal governments and the private sector. This final rule does not impose any federal mandate on any state, local, or tribal government or the private sector within the meaning of UMRA.

Environmental Impact

This final rule concerns the establishment of fair market rent schedules and related external administrative requirements or procedures that do not constitute a development decision that affects the physical condition of specific project areas or building sites. Accordingly, under 24 CFR 50.19(c)(6), this final rule is categorically excluded from environmental review under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321).

Regulatory Flexibility Act

The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.), generally requires an agency to conduct a regulatory flexibility analysis of any rule subject to notice and comment rulemaking requirements, unless the agency certifies that the rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. At the proposed rule stage, HUD prepared an Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (IRFA) and HUD follows the IRFA with a Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (FRFA). HUD finds in the FRFA that this final rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The FRFA, which is found in Appendix A to this final rule and can also be found at www.regulations.gov elaborates, and provides details on how HUD made this finding.

Executive Order 13132, Federalism

Executive Order 13132 (entitled “Federalism”) prohibits, to the extent practicable and permitted by law, an agency from promulgating a regulation that has federalism implications and either imposes substantial direct compliance costs on state and local governments and is not required by statute or preempts state law, unless the relevant requirements of section 6 of the Executive order are met. This final rule does not have federalism implications and does not impose substantial direct compliance costs on state and local governments or preempt state law within the meaning of the Executive order.

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number

The Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance number for 24 CFR part 982 is 14.871.

List of Subjects 24 CFR Part 888

Grant programs-housing and community development, Rent subsidies.

24 CFR Part 982

Grant programs-housing and community development, Grant programs-Indians, Indians, Public housing, Rent subsidies, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

24 CFR Part 983

Grant programs-housing and community development, Low and moderate income housing, Rent subsidies, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

24 CFR Part 985

Grant programs-housing and community development, Public housing, Rent subsidies, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

Accordingly, for the reasons stated in the preamble, HUD amends 24 CFR parts 888, 982, 983, and 985 as follows:

PART 888—SECTION 8 HOUSING ASSISTANCE PAYMENTS PROGRAM—FAIR MARKET RENTS AND CONTRACT RENT ANNUAL ADJUSTMENT FACTORS 1. The authority citation for part 888 continues to read as follows: Authority:

42 U.S.C. 1437f and 3535d.

2. In § 888.111, revise paragraph (a) to read as follows:
§ 888.111 Fair market rents for existing housing: Applicability.

(a) The fair market rents (FMRs) for existing housing are determined by HUD and are used in the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher program (HCV program) (part 982 of this title), Section 8 project-based assistance programs and other programs requiring their use. In the HCV program, the FMRs are used to determine payment standard schedules. In the Section 8 project-based assistance programs, the FMRs are used to determine the maximum initial rent (at the beginning of the term of a housing assistance payments contract).

3. Revise § 888.113 to read as follows:
§ 888.113 Fair market rents for existing housing: Methodology.

(a) Basis for setting fair market rents. Fair Market Rents (FMRs) are estimates of rent plus the cost of utilities, except telephone. FMRs are housing market-wide estimates of rents that provide opportunities to rent standard quality housing throughout the geographic area in which rental housing units are in competition. The level at which FMRs are set is expressed as a percentile point within the rent distribution of standard quality rental housing units in the FMR area. FMRs are set at the 40th percentile rent, the dollar amount below which the rent for 40 percent of standard quality rental housing units fall within the FMR area. The 40th percentile rent is drawn from the distribution of rents of all units within the FMR area that are occupied by recent movers. Adjustments are made to exclude public housing units, newly built units and substandard units.

(b) Setting FMRs at the 40th percentile rent. Generally, HUD will set the FMRs at the 40th percentile rent, but no lower than 90 percent of the previous year's FMR for the FMR area.

(c) Setting Small Area FMRs. (1) HUD will set Small Area FMRs for certain metropolitan FMR areas for use in the administration of tenant-based assistance under the HCV program. HUD will establish the selection values used to determine those metropolitan areas through a Federal Register notice on November 16, 2016 and may update the selection values through a Federal Register notice, subject to public comment. The selection criteria used to determine those metropolitan areas are:

(i) The number of vouchers under lease in the metropolitan FMR area;

(ii) The percentage of the standard quality rental stock, within the metropolitan FMR area is in small areas (ZIP codes) where the Small Area FMR is more than 110 percent of the metropolitan FMR area;

(iii) The percentage of voucher families living in concentrated low income areas;

(iv) The percentage of voucher families living in concentrated low income areas relative to the percentage of all renters within these areas over the entire metropolitan area; and

(v) The vacancy rate for the metropolitan area.

(2) For purposes of determining applicability of Small Area FMRs to a metropolitan area, the term “concentrated low-income areas” means:

(i) Those census tracts in the metropolitan FMR area with a poverty rate of 25 percent or more; or

(ii) Any tract in the metropolitan FMR area where at least 50 percent of the households earn less than 60 percent of the area median income and are designated by HUD as Qualified Census Tracts in accordance with section 42 of the Internal Revenue Code (26 U.S.C. 42).

(3) If a metropolitan area meets the criteria of paragraph (c)(1) of this section, Small Area FMRs will apply to the metropolitan area and all PHAs administering HCV programs in that area will be required to use Small Area FMRs. A PHA administering an HCV program in a metropolitan area not subject to the application of Small Area FMRs may opt to use Small Area FMRs by seeking approval from HUD's Office of Public and Indian Housing (PIH) through written request to PIH.

(4) HUD will designate Small Area FMR areas at the beginning of a Federal fiscal year, such designations will be permanent, and will make new area designations every 5 years thereafter as new data becomes available. HUD may suspend a Small Area FMR designation from a metropolitan area, or may temporarily exempt a PHA in a Small Area FMR metropolitan area from use of the Small Area FMRs, when HUD by notice makes a documented determination that such action is warranted. Actions that may serve as the basis of a suspension of Small Area FMRs are:

(i) A Presidentially declared disaster area that results in the loss of a substantial number of housing units;

(ii) A sudden influx of displaced households needing permanent housing; or

(iii) Other events as determined by the Secretary.

(5) Small Area FMRs only apply to tenant-based assistance under the HCV program. However, a PHA may elect to apply Small Area FMRs to project-based voucher (PBV) units at 24 CFR part 983 as provided in paragraph (h) of this section.

(d) FMR areas. FMR areas comprise metropolitan areas and nonmetropolitan counties and Small Area FMR areas as follows:

(1) Generally, FMR areas are metropolitan areas and nonmetropolitan counties. With several exceptions, the most current Office of Management and Budget (OMB) metropolitan area definitions of Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) are used because of their generally close correspondence with housing market area definitions. HUD may make exceptions to OMB definitions if the MSAs encompass areas that are larger than housing market areas. The counties deleted from the HUD-defined FMR areas in those cases are established as separate metropolitan county FMR areas. FMRs are established for all areas in the United States, the District of Columbia, and the Insular Areas of the United States.

(2) Small Area FMR areas are the U.S. Postal Service ZIP code areas within a designated metropolitan area.

(e) Data sources. (1) HUD uses the most accurate and current data available to develop the FMR estimates and may add other data sources as they are discovered and determined to be statistically valid. The following sources of survey data are used to develop the base-year FMR estimates:

(i) The most recent American Community Survey conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, which provides statistically reliable rent data.

(ii) Locally collected survey data acquired through Address-Based Mail surveys or Random Digit Dialing (RDD) telephone survey data, based on a sampling procedure that uses computers to select statistically random samples of rental housing.

(iii) Statistically valid information, as determined by HUD, presented to HUD during the public comment and review period.

(2) Base-year recent mover adjusted FMRs are updated and trended to the midpoint of the program year they are to be effective using Consumer Price Index (CPI) data for rents and for utilities.

(f) Unit size adjustments. (1) For most areas the ratios developed incorporating the most recent American Community Survey data are applied to the two-bedroom FMR estimates to derive FMRs for other bedroom sizes. Exceptions to this procedure may be made for areas with local bedroom intervals below an acceptable range. To help the largest most difficult-to-house families find units, higher ratios than the actual market ratios may be used for three-bedroom and larger-size units.

(2) The FMR for single room occupancy housing is 75 percent of the FMR for a zero bedroom unit.

(g) Manufactured home space rental. The FMR for a manufactured home space rental (for the HCV program under 24 CFR part 982) is 40 percent of the FMR for a two-bedroom unit for the metropolitan area or non-metropolitan county, as applicable. Small Area FMRs under paragraph (c) of this section do not apply to manufactured home space rentals.

(h) Small Area FMRs and Project-based vouchers. Small Area FMRs do not apply to Project-based vouchers regardless of whether HUD designates the metropolitan area or approves the PHA for Small Area FMRs under paragraph (c)(3) of this section. The following exceptions apply:

(1) Where the PHA notice of owner selection under 24 CFR 983.51(d) was made on or before the effective dates of both the Small Area FMR designation and the PHA administrative policy, the PHA and owner may mutually agree to apply the Small Area FMR. The application of the Small Area FMRs must be prospective and consistent with the PHA administrative plan. The owner and PHA may not subsequently choose to revert back to the use of the metropolitan-wide FMRs for the PBV project. If the rent to owner will increase as a result of the mutual agreement to apply the Small Area FMRs to the PBV project, the rent increase shall not be effective until the first annual anniversary of the HAP contract in accordance with 24 CFR 983.302(b).

(2) Where the PHA notice of owner selection under 24 CFR 983.51(d) was made after the effective dates of both the Small Area FMR designation and the PHA administrative policy, the Small Area FMRs shall apply to the PBV project if the PHA administrative plan provides that Small Area FMRs are used for all future PBV projects. If the PHA chooses to implement this administrative policy, the policy must apply to all future PBV projects and the PHA's entire jurisdiction. An owner and the PHA may not subsequently choose to apply the metropolitan area FMR to the project, regardless of whether the PHA subsequently changes its administrative plan to revert to the use of metropolitan-wide FMR for future PBV projects.

(3) For purposes of this section, the term “effective date of the Small Area FMR designation” means:

(i) The date that HUD designated a metropolitan area as a Small Area FMR area; or

(ii) The date that HUD approved a PHA request to voluntarily opt to use Small Area FMRs for its HCV program, as applicable.

(4) For purposes of this section, the term “effective date of the PHA administrative policy” means the date the administrative policy was formally adopted as part of the PHA administrative plan by the PHA Board of Commissioners or other authorized PHA officials in accordance with § 982.54(a).

(i) Transition of metropolitan areas previously subject to 50th percentile FMRs. (1) A metropolitan area designated as 50th percentile FMR areas for which the 3-year period has not expired prior to January 17, 2017 shall transition out of 50th percentile FMRs as follows:

(i) A 50th percentile FMR area that is designated for Small Area FMRs in accordance with paragraph (c) of this section will transition to the Small Area FMRs upon the effective date of the Small Area FMR designation;

(ii) A 50th percentile metropolitan FMR area not designated as a Small Area FMRs in accordance with paragraph (c) of this section, will remain a 50th percentile FMR until the expiration of the three-year period, at which time the metropolitan area will revert to the standard FMR based on the 40th percentile rent for the metropolitan area.

(2) A PHA with jurisdiction in a 50th percentile FMR area that reverts to the standard 40th percentile FMR may request HUD approval of payment standard amounts based on the 50th percentile rent in accordance with 24 CFR 982.503(f).

(3) HUD will calculate the 50th percentile rents for certain metropolitan areas for purposes of this transition and to approve success rate payment standard amounts in accordance with 24 CFR 982.503(e). As is the case for determining 40th percentile rent, the 50th percentile rent is drawn from the distribution of rents of all units that are occupied by recent movers and adjustments are made to exclude public housing units, newly built units and substandard units.

4. Revise § 888.115 to read as follows:
§ 888.115 Fair market rents for existing housing: Manner of publication.

(a) Publication of FMRs. FMRs will be published at least annually by HUD on the World Wide Web, or in any other manner specified by the Secretary. HUD will publish a notice announcing the publication of the FMRs in the Federal Register, to be effective October 1 of each year, and provide for a minimum of 30 days of public comments and requested for reevaluation of the FMRs in a jurisdiction. The FMRs will become effective no earlier than 30 days after the date the notice publishes in the Federal Register (e.g., if HUD fails to publish FMRs 30 days before October 1, the effective date will be 30 days after publication), except for areas where HUD receives comments during the minimum 30-day comment period requesting reevaluation of the FMRs in a jurisdiction. After HUD reviews a request for reevaluation, HUD will post on the World Wide Web the final FMRs for the areas that have been reevaluated and publish a notice in the Federal Register announcing the publication and the effective date.

(b) Changes in methodology. HUD will publish for comment in the Federal Register a document proposing material changes in the method for estimating FMRs and shall respond to public comment on the proposed material changes in the subsequent Federal Register document announcing the availability of new FMRs based on the revised method for estimating FMRs.

PART 982—SECTION 8 TENANT-BASED ASSISTANCE: HOUSING CHOICE VOUCHER PROGRAM 5. The authority citation for part 982 continues to read as follows: Authority:

42 U.S.C. 1437f and 3535d.

6. In § 982.54, revise paragraph (d)(14) and add paragraph (d)(23) to read as follows:
§ 982.54 Administrative plan.

(d) * * *

(14) The process for establishing and revising payment standards, including policies on administering decreases in the payment standard during the HAP contract term (see § 982.505(d)(3)).

(23) Policies concerning application of Small Area FMRs to project-based voucher units (see § 888.113(h)).

7. Amend § 982.503 as follows: a. Add a sentence to the end of paragraph (b)(1)(i); b. Revise paragraph (b)(1)(iii) and add paragraphs (b)(1)(iv) through (vi); c. Revise paragraph (b)(2); d. Revise paragraphs (c)(2) introductory text, (c)(2)(ii), and (c)(5); e. In paragraphs (f) introductory text and (f)(2), remove “§ 888.113(c)” and add in its place “§ 888.113(i)(3)”.

The addition and revisions read as follows:

§ 982.503 Payment standard amount and schedule.

(b) * * *

(1) * * *

(i) * * * The PHA must revise the payment standard amount no later than 3 months following the effective date of the published FMR if a change is necessary to stay within the basic range.

(iii) A PHA that is not in a designated Small Area FMR area or has not opted to voluntarily implement Small Area FMRs under 24 CFR 888.113(c)(3) may establish exception payment standards for a ZIP code area above the basic range for the metropolitan FMR based on the HUD published Small Area FMRs. The PHA may establish an exception payment standard up to 110 percent of the HUD published Small Area FMR for that ZIP code area. The PHA must notify HUD if it establishes an exception payment standard based on the Small Area FMR. The exception payment standard must apply to the entire ZIP code area.

(iv) At the request of a PHA administering the HCV program under Small Area FMRs under § 888.113(c)(3), HUD may approve an exception payment standard for a Small Area FMR area above the 110 percent of the published FMR in accordance with conditions set forth by Notice in the Federal Register. The requirements of paragraph (c) of this section do not apply to these exception payment standard requests and approvals.

(v) The PHA may establish an exception payment standard of not more than 120 percent of the published FMR if required as a reasonable accommodation in accordance with 24 CFR part 8 for a family that includes a person with a disability. Any unit approved under an exception payment standard must still meet the reasonable rent requirements found at § 982.507.

(vi) The PHA may establish an exception payment standard of more than 120 percent of the published FMR if required as a reasonable accommodation in accordance with 24 CFR part 8 for a family that includes a person with a disability after approval from HUD. Any unit approved under an exception payment standard must still meet the reasonable rent requirements found at § 982.507.

(2) Except as described in paragraphs (b)(1)(iii) through (v) of this section, the PHA must request HUD approval to establish a payment standard amount that is higher or lower than the basic range. HUD has sole discretion to grant or deny approval of a higher or lower payment standard amount. Paragraphs (c) and (e) of this section describe the requirements for approval of a higher payment standard amount (“exception payment standard amount”).

(c) * * *

(2) Above 110 percent of FMR to 120 percent of published FMR. The HUD Field Office may approve an exception payment standard amount from above 110 percent of the published FMR to 120 percent of the published FMR (upper range) if the HUD Field Office determines that approval is justified by the median rent method or the 40th percentile rent or the Small Area FMR method as described in paragraph (c)(2)(ii) of this section (and that such approval is also supported by an appropriate program justification in accordance with paragraph (c)(4) of this section).

(ii) 40th percentile rent or Small Area FMR method. In this method, HUD determines that the area exception payment standard amount equals application of the 40th percentile of rents for standard quality rental housing in the exception area or the Small Area FMR. HUD determines whether the 40th percentile rent or Small Area FMR applies in accordance with the methodology described in 24 CFR 888.113 for determining FMRs. A PHA must present statistically representative rental housing survey data to justify HUD approval.

(5) Population. The total population of HUD-approved exception areas in an FMR area may not include more than 50 percent of the population of the FMR area, except when applying Small Area FMR exception areas under paragraph (b)(1)(iii) of this section.

8. In § 982.505, revise paragraph (c)(3) and add a sentence at the end of paragraph (d) to read as follows:
§ 982.505 How to calculate housing assistance payment.

(c) * * *

(3) Decrease in the payment standard amount during the HAP contract term. If the amount on the payment standard schedule is decreased during the term of the HAP contract, the PHA is not required to reduce the payment standard amount used to calculate the subsidy for the families under HAP contract for as long as the HAP contract remains in effect.

(i) If the PHA chooses to reduce the payment standard for the families currently under HAP contract during the HAP contract term in accordance with their administrative plan, the initial reduction to the payment standard amount used to calculate the monthly housing assistance payment for the family may not be applied any earlier than the effective date of the family's second regular reexamination following the effective date of the decrease in the payment standard amount.

(ii) The PHA may choose to reduce the payment standard amount for families that remain under HAP contract to the current payment standard amount in effect on the PHA voucher payment standard schedule, or may reduce the payment standard amount to an amount that is higher than the normally applicable payment standard amount on the PHA voucher payment standard schedule. The PHA may further reduce the payment standard amount for the families during the term of the HAP contract, provided the subsequent reductions continue to result in a payment standard amount that meets or exceeds the normally applicable payment standard amount on the PHA voucher payment standard schedule.

(iii) The PHA must provide the family with at least 12 months' notice that the payment standard is being reduced during the term of the HAP contract before the effective date of the change.

(iv) The PHA shall administer decreases in the payment standard amount during the term of the HAP contract in accordance with the PHA policy as described in the PHA administrative plan. The PHA may establish different policies for designated areas within their jurisdiction (e.g., for different zip code areas), but the PHA administrative policy on decreases to payment standards during the term of the HAP contract applies to all families under HAP contract at the time of the effective date of decrease in the payment standard within that designated area. The PHA may not limit or otherwise establish different protections or policies for certain families under HAP contract.

(d) * * * A PHA may establish a payment standard greater than 120 percent of the FMR by submitting a request to HUD.

9. In § 982.507, revise paragraph (a)(2)(ii) to read as follows:
§ 982.507 Rent to owner: Reasonable rent.

(a) * * *

(2) * * *

(ii) If there is a 10 percent decrease in the published FMR in effect 60 days before the contract anniversary (for the unit size rented by the family) as compared with the FMR in effect 1 year before the contract anniversary.

PART 983—PROJECT-BASED VOUCHER (PBV) PROGRAM 10. The authority citation for part 983 continues to read as follows: Authority:

42 U.S.C. 1437f and 3535d.

11. In § 983.301, revise paragraph (a)(3) to read as follows:
§ 983.301 Determining the rent to owner.

(a) * * *

(3) The rent to owner is also redetermined in accordance with § 983.302.

12. In § 983.302, revise paragraph (a)(2) to read as follows:
§ 983.302 Redetermination of rent to owner.

(a) * * *

(2) When there is a 10 percent decrease in the published FMR.

13. In § 983.303, revise paragraph (b)(1) to read as follows:
§ 983.303 Reasonable rent.

(b) * * *

(1) Whenever there is a 10 percent decrease in the published FMR in effect 60 days before the contract anniversary (for the unit sizes specified in the HAP contract) as compared with the FMR in effect 1 year before the contract anniversary.

PART 985—SECTION 8 MANAGEMENT ASSESSMENT PROGRAM (SEMAP) 14. The authority citation for part 985 continues to read as follows: Authority:

42 U.S.C. 1437a, 1437c, 1437f, and 3535(d).

15. In § 985.3, revise paragraphs (b)(1), (b)(3)(i)(B), and (b)(3)(ii) and add a sentence to the end of paragraph (i)(1) to read as follows:
§ 985.3 Indicators, HUD verification methods and ratings.

(b) * * *

(1) This indicator shows whether the PHA has and implements a reasonable written method to determine and document for each unit leased that the rent to owner is reasonable based on current rents for comparable unassisted units: At the time of initial leasing; if there is any increase in the rent to owner; at the HAP contract anniversary if there is a 10 percent decrease in the published fair market rent (FMR) in effect 60 days before the HAP contract anniversary. The PHA's method must take into consideration the location, size, type, quality and age of the units, and the amenities, housing services, and maintenance and utilities provided by the owners in determining comparability and the reasonable rent. (24 CFR 982.4, 24 CFR 982.54(d)(15), 982.158(f)(7) and 982.507)

(3) * * *

(i) * * *

(B) Based on the PHA's quality control sample of tenant files, the PHA follows its written method to determine reasonable rent and has documented its determination that the rent to owner is reasonable in accordance with § 982.507 of this chapter for at least 98 percent of units sampled at the time of initial leasing, if there is any increase in the rent to owner, and at the HAP contract anniversary if there is a 10 percent decrease in the published FMR in effect 60 days before the HAP contract anniversary. 20 points.

(ii) The PHA's SEMAP certification includes the statements in paragraph (b)(3)(i) of this section, except that the PHA documents its determination of reasonable rent for only 80 to 97 percent of units sampled at initial leasing, if there is any increase in the rent to owner, and at the HAP contract anniversary if there is a 10 percent decrease in the published FMR in effect 60 days before the HAP contract anniversary. 15 points.

(i) * * *

(1) * * * For purposes of this paragraph, payment standards that do not exceed 110 percent of the current applicable published FMRs include exception payment standards established by the PHA in accordance with 982.503(c)(iii).

Dated: November 3, 2016. Nani A. Coloretti, Deputy Secretary. Appendix A—Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Establishing a More Effective Fair Market Rent System; Using Small Area Fair Market Rents in Housing Choice Voucher Program Instead of the Current 50th Percentile FMRs 1. Introduction

The Regulatory Impact Analysis of the final Small Area Fair Market Rent (Small Area FMR) rule identifies two types of small entities that would be affected by the rule: Small Public Housing Agencies (PHAs) and small private landlords. The Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (FRFA) furthers the analysis of the impact of the rule on small entities by including more data on the relevant sectors as well as a more rigorous definition of what is a “small” PHA. The analysis of the final rule satisfies Section 604 of the Regulatory Flexibility Act. The requirements of the FRFA are listed below.7

7 HUD is not a covered agency, as defined in section 609(d)(2), and so is not required to comply with (6)1.

(a) Each final regulatory flexibility analysis required under this section shall contain—

(1) A statement of the need for, and objectives of, the rule: This requirement is met by Sections 2.2 and 2.3 of the FRFA. A lengthier discussion can be found in the Regulatory Impact Analysis and the Preamble of the Final Rule.

(2) A statement of the significant issues raised by the public comments in response to the initial regulatory flexibility analysis, a statement of the assessment of the agency of such issues, and a statement of any changes made in the proposed rule as a result of such comments; This requirement is met by Sections 3 of the FRFA. A discussion concerning all public comments submitted on the proposed rule can be found in the Preamble of the Final Rule.

(3) The response of the agency to any comments filed by the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration in response to the proposed rule, and a detailed statement of any change made to the proposed rule in the final rule as a result of the comments; This requirement is met by Section 3 of the FRFA.

(4) A description of and an estimate of the number of small entities to which the rule will apply or an explanation of why no such estimate is available: This requirement is met Sections 4.2 and 5.2 of the FRFA.

(5) A description of the projected reporting, recordkeeping and other compliance requirements of the rule, including an estimate of the classes of small entities which will be subject to the requirement and the type of professional skills necessary for preparation of the report or record: This requirement is met by Section 4.2 of the FRFA.

(6) A description of the steps the agency has taken to minimize the significant economic impact on small entities consistent with the stated objectives of applicable statutes, including a statement of the factual, policy, and legal reasons for selecting the alternative adopted in the final rule and why each one of the other significant alternatives to the rule considered by the agency which affect the impact on small entities was rejected: This requirement is met by Section 6 of the FRFA.

(b) The agency shall make copies of the final regulatory flexibility analysis available to members of the public and shall publish in the Federal Register such analysis or a summary thereof. This requirement is satisfied by the present FRFA.

HUD expects a variety of economic effects stemming from implementation of the final rule. Transfers involving vouchers would be the most sizable of those effects. PHAs will face both costs and benefits from the implementation of this rule. Social benefits and costs associated with the rule could be generated by a new settlement pattern among voucher holders. Quantified incremental impacts include an expected transfer of $151 million among participants and $2 million of implementation costs to PHAs. The Regulatory Impact Analysis accompanying the final rule includes a lengthy description of qualitative impacts as well details concerning the calculation of the quantitative impacts.

2. Statement of the Need for, and Objectives of, the Rule

Section 2 documents the need for the final Small Area FMR rule as well as the objectives of the final rule.

2.1. Overview of Final Rule

This final rule requires the use of Small Area Fair Market Rents (Small Area FMRs) in the administration of the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program for certain metropolitan areas. HUD is implementing the use of Small Area FMRs in place of the current 50th percentile rent to address high levels of voucher concentration. HUD believes that Small Area FMRs gives HCV tenants a more effective means to move into areas of higher opportunity and lower poverty areas by providing them with subsidy adequate to make such areas accessible and to thereby reduce the number of voucher families that reside in areas of high poverty concentration.

HUD is using several criteria to determine which metropolitan areas would best be served by application of Small Area FMRs in the administration of the HCV program. These criteria include a threshold number of vouchers within a metropolitan area, the concentration of current HCV tenants in low-income areas, and the percentage of renter occupied units within the metropolitan area with Small Area FMRs above the payment standard basic range. Public housing agencies (PHAs) operating in designated metropolitan areas would be required to use Small Area FMRs. PHAs not operating in the designated areas would have the option to use Small Area FMRs in administering their HCV programs. Other programs that use FMRs would continue to use area-wide FMRs.

Note to Reader: A more comprehensive summary of the rule can be found in the Regulatory Impact Analysis and the Rule itself.

2.2. Need for the Rule

HUD's current rule for addressing high concentrations of voucher tenants in metropolitan areas, the 50th percentile Fair Market Rent rule, has not succeeded in providing voucher tenants access to high opportunity areas within a Fair Market Rent area. Therefore, the Small Area FMR rule is needed to replace the current regulatory provision with a new framework intended to provide voucher families with increased opportunities to find suitable units in higher opportunity areas.

2.3. Objectives of Rule

This final rule, through establishment of Small Area FMRs as a means of setting rents in certain metropolitan areas, is intended to facilitate the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program in achieving two program objectives: (1) Increasing the ability of low-income families to find and lease decent and affordable housing; and (2) providing low-income families with access to a broad range of housing opportunities throughout a metropolitan area. HUD's goal in pursuing this rulemaking is to provide HCV tenants with a greater ability to move into areas where jobs, transportation, and educational opportunities exist.

3. Significant Issues Raised by the Public Comments in Response to the Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis and Comments filed by the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration, Agency Assessment of Such Issues, and Changes Made in the Proposed Rule as a Result of Such Comments 3.1. Public Comments Filed Regarding the Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis

No public comments were filed that discussed or provided feedback on the Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis. Consequently, there is nothing for HUD to assess regarding these types of comments and no changes were made to the proposed rule based on IRFA comments.

3.2. Comments Filed by Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration

No public comments were filed from the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration. The Small Business Administration provided comments during the interagency clearance process preceding publication of the proposed rule that were incorporated in the published document; however, no further changes to the proposed rule were made.

4.0. Description and Estimate of the Number of Small Entities to Which the Rule Will Apply 4.1. Industry Data: Lessors of Residential Building and Dwellings

The Small Business Administration defines a lessor of residential real estate to be a small business if it earns annual revenues (sales receipts) of less than $27.5 million. In the 2012 Economic Census, the Census counted approximately 50,000 of which approximately 43,000 operated for the entire year of 2012. Our comparisons are made using the full-year data to be more consistent with the definition of what is small (firms operating the entire year).

Of the 42,911 firms operating all year, 42,618 can be considered small firms. Total annual revenue of the industry was $84 billion,8 compared to $43 billion for small firms. Approximately 300,000 individuals were employed by firms operating all year during the pay period observed in March 2012; 200,000 of them were employed by small firms. Small lessors account for 99 percent of all firms, 51 percent of all revenue, 57 percent of all payroll, and 67 percent of employees hired during the first quarter. The industry is dominated by small firms in numbers of firms and employees, but is roughly equivalent to all large firms in terms of revenue and payroll.

8 American Community Survey data indicate that the lessor industry revenue is approximately 20 percent of aggregate rents. The industry collects twice the average 10 percent commission for property managers. This difference could be explained by: Realtors' commissions, other activities, and lessors owning property and thus collecting the full rent.

Lessors of Residential Buildings and Dwellings (NAICS Industry 531110) Operated for the Entire Year 2012, United States Firm size by revenue Firms Revenue
  • ($1,000)
  • Payroll
  • ($1,000)
  • Employees for period
  • including
  • March 12
  • All firms * 42,911 83,593,387 9,838,805 303,135 Revenue less than $25,000,000 42,618 42,908,437 5,574,606 202,381 Proportion small firms ** 99% 51% 57% 67% * Note that there were 50,664 firms altogether but that 42,911 operated all year. Using the larger base would reduce the proportion of small firms. ** The official size standard of the SBA is $27.5 million. Statistics are not available for this cut-off so we use the closest one leading to a slight underestimate of the proportion “small.”

    HUD is able to provide information on the number of owners who participate in the housing choice voucher program. Note that counting real estate owners is not equivalent to lessors that operate the property. One would expect there to be many more owners than lessors. Nonetheless, the data provides insight as to the distribution of vouchers. It is evident that the overwhelming proportion of owners rent to very few voucher tenants. Approximately two-thirds of owners who rent to voucher tenants rent to only one voucher tenant household. Many of these are likely owners of single-family homes for whom the rental income is not the primary source of income. Approximately 90 percent rent to no more than 4 voucher tenant households, which could be housed in a large two-story building. Very few owners rent to enough voucher tenants to occupy multiple buildings.

    U.S. Residential Real Estate Owners Renting to Voucher Tenant Households * Category of owner with voucher tenant households Number of owners with voucher tenant households* Percent of owners with voucher tenant households 1 Voucher 435,653 67.2 2-4 Vouchers 142,925 22.1 5-19 Vouchers 55,206 8.5 20-49 Vouchers 10,773 1.7 50-99 Vouchers 2,564 0.4 100-199 Vouchers 687 0.1 200 or more Vouchers 148 0.0 All 647,956 100.0 * This table describes voucher tenants but NOT non-voucher tenants. It is likely that many owners rent to additional tenants, making the above table a slight overestimate of the small landlords affected by the rule.

    The data on the distribution of owners by number of vouchers implies that industry structure is not significantly different for vouchers than for other residential rental properties. The tables do not correspond perfectly because one describes property managers and the other property owners. In addition, the table for owners shows information for voucher tenants only and does not include any unassisted tenants.

    HUD estimates that 18 percent of all vouchers are likely to be affected by the rule. If the number of lessor firms is proportional to the number of vouchers, then approximately 7,700 firms operating all year round (or 9,000 firms operating at any time) would manage units in Small Area FMR areas. They do not necessarily provide housing for voucher tenants but would be affected by any market externalities engendered by the rule. The median share of voucher holders in a census tract is 3.1 percent. Again, assuming proportionality we expect 400-500 NAICS industry 531110 firms to manage units occupied by voucher tenants in the Small Area FMR areas created by the proposed rule. The number of voucher units managed by any one firm will vary.

    4.2. Economic Impacts and Compliance Requirements on Small Landlords

    There are two types of possible effects of the rule on property owners and managers. The first is direct: An owner (and lessor) who receives income from a voucher tenant may experience a change in rental income without changing the contract or tenant. Consider a low-rent area in which the subsidy will decline. The owner (and lessor) would be held harmless if the tenant chose to make up the difference. However, suppose that the subsidy declined by a critical amount such that the tenant can no longer afford the unit. The owner has two choices: Search for a new tenant who will pay the market rent or lower the rent by enough to maintain the current tenant. The former strategy would be chosen if the housing submarket were characterized by adequate demand. The latter strategy would be chosen if the reduction in rents are offset by the costs of finding a new tenant. Thus, while the owner (and lessor) may lose a particular voucher tenant, they will not lose the rental income from that unit. The rule may generate revenue for lessors of residential building and dwellings if a significant number of moves result. Managing turnover is one of the primary services provided by a lessor to an owner. This would not be a major effect but could serve to counterbalance any minor adverse effects on lessors.

    The second type of effect is indirect (a pecuniary externality). A reduction (increase) of the voucher subsidy would lower (raise) the demand for housing in that submarket. Even properties without any voucher tenants would be affected by such a market-wide effect. However, a decline in demand would only result if voucher households make up a sufficiently large portion of rental households in a given neighborhood. Market spillovers are expected to be minimal in many areas due to the limited size of the voucher program in relation with the entire housing market. Of the 10,800 Census tracts in the areas affected by the final rule, the median share of voucher households is 3.2 percent. Even in areas where the share is larger, the rule does not eliminate the subsidy but reduces it. Small lessors will be disproportionately impacted by market effects only if the units leased by small lessors are disproportionately concentrated in low-rent areas.

    The final rule does not impose any additional reporting, recordkeeping and other compliance requirements. Compliance and unit standards remain the same. An additional effect of the rule is that eight current 50th percentile areas will revert to 40th percentile FMRs, as the Small Area FMR rule uses different selection criteria than the 50th percentile rule. These areas currently cover 82,000 vouchers. On average, the FY16 40th percentile FMR is $77 lower than the 50th percentile FMR, meaning a transfer of $6.3 million is expected through a combination of landlords accepting lower rent, tenants increasing out of pocket rent, or tenants moving to lower cost, less desired units.

    5. Public Housing Agencies Affected

    PHAs operating in metropolitan areas that meet the established Small Area FMR criteria of the final rule will be required to use Small Area FMRs in their HCV programs. As of issuance of this final rule, there are 24 areas listed that meet these criteria. These areas contain approximately 368,000 (18 percent) of the HCV households nationwide.9 Of these 368,000 vouchers, 219,000 vouchers are administered by PHAs that may not yet use multiple payment standards.

    9 This number includes areas that have already implemented Small Area FMRs and Moving to Work Agencies, which may not be compelled to adjust their payment standards as a result of the rule. The analysis below considers these exceptions.

    5.1. Data: Small PHAs

    A small PHA is defined by HUD to be one of less than 250 units.10 Using this definition, approximately half of the PHAs (1,100 out of 2,200) that administer HCVs are considered small. In the 24 metropolitan areas affected by the proposed rule, there are 217 PHAs, of which 71 are small. The Regulatory Flexibility Analysis authorizes an agency to adopt and apply definitions of small, “which are appropriate to the activities of the agency” for each category of small entity.11 The 250-unit limit is one traditionally used by HUD in data collection as well as by city governments. In addition, it has been shown that PHAs of this size class face greater average costs of administering housing choice vouchers.12 A greater average cost is an indicator for smaller entities is suggestive evidence of fixed costs of operation. Small PHAs make up 32 percent of the PHAs in affected areas and would manage no more than 2 percent of the vouchers.

    10 For regulatory definitions of small PHAs, see: Deregulation of Small PHAs Final Rule, 24 CFR part 902, 903, and 985.

    11 The RFA standard definition of a “small governmental jurisdiction” is the government of a city, county, town, school district or special district with a population of less than 50,000.

    12 Abt Associates, 2015.

    5.2. Economic Impacts and Compliance Requirements for PHAs

    PHAs administering Small Area FMRs will likely face higher administrative costs. Initial costs would include training employees and setting up new systems. Periodic costs include costs related to payment standard and rent determinations as well any increase in moves and contract rent changes than those operating under one metropolitan FMR. PHAs change their payment standards as the FMR changes. Once the payment standard is established, and the PHA board approves, the PHA creates materials to inform their customers (and landlords) of the new payment standards. Making the transition from one to many payment standards is likely to impose some burden at initial implementation of the Small Area FMR rule.

    There are at least two ways that a PHA would respond to the increased complexity of multiple payment standards. First, it could pursue a more labor-intensive solution and ask staff to determine the payment standard manually. This would not be particularly difficult for a small PHA with few payment standards. Small PHAs typically have smaller service areas with fewer ZIP codes and therefore fewer Small Area FMR-based payments standards to determine and administer than do larger PHAs. Another solution is to make an upfront investment to automate the process of subsidy determination. A unit's address is already entered into a PHA's database. All that is needed is a tool that calculates the rental subsidy as a function of the address. HUD has the intention of developing such an application for PHAs and voucher holder tenants. For it to work, PHAs will have to provide data on their payment standard decisions to HUD. Thus, compliance costs of PHAs are expected to rise slightly but not significantly. Because the tool will be developed, tested, and provided by HUD, it is not expected that the cost of implementation will be disproportionate.

    A 2015 study 13 reports that, according to a Dallas PHA official, implementation costs of multiple payment standards were minimal at roughly $10 a household. Though it is unclear what this estimate considers, and assuming it can be applied elsewhere, as a rough measure of magnitude this would mean $2.2 million to $3.7 million in implementation costs over the 24 areas designated and 217 PHAs affected by this final rule. The more accurate estimate is the lower because it is based on PHAs that do not already use multiple payment standards. Both were considered for completeness. The impact on small entities would be a fraction of this impact. Assuming that all PHAs are affected and that all small PHAs are at the maximum, then the total impact on all small PHAs would be $177,500 (71 × 250 × $10). Such a conservative estimate would reduce any downwards bias in the estimate of the impact stemming from returns to scale.

    13 Collinson and Ganong, (2015, May).

    The Small Area FMR rule will be beneficial to PHAs in some important respects. First, the rule intends to eliminate the possibility that an area will cycle in and out of the 50th percentile FMR as it can currently occur under the 2000 rule. This change is expected to reduce the year-to-year administrative uncertainty and the costs of adjusting the program to changing FMR calculations over time. Second, the final rule is also expected to facilitate PHA and regional compliance with consolidated planning and Fair Housing requirements and allow counseling and similar efforts to be more effective.14 Finally, the use of Small Area FMRs is expected to decrease the costs of rent reasonableness determinations as the payment standards better reflect local rent levels.

    14 Advancing mobility is one of the costliest activities of a PHA.

    6. Alternatives Which Minimize Impact on Small Entities

    Under the Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis, HUD must discuss alternatives that minimize the economic impact on small entities. In order to lessen the burden on PHAs, and specifically small PHAs, HUD has taken, or is committed to taking, several measures in implementing Small Area FMRs designed to facilitate transition to this approach and minimize costs and burdens. Specifically, HUD is pursuing the following strategies to mitigate adverse impacts:

    Publish Small Area FMRs grouped by overlapping potential payment standards. Although the final rule does not specifically address the format of HUD's publication of Small Area FMRs, in on-line materials HUD will provide a version of Small Area FMRs formatted and organized so as to facilitate compliance by PHAs.

    Develop a mobile application to automate payment standard identification and significantly reduce administrative costs of implementing the Small Area FMR rule for all parties involved (tenant, landlord, PHA). As noted above, HUD will be developing such an application for PHAs, voucher holders, and landlords.

    Allow the rounding of Small Area FMRs to the nearest ten dollars to make it easier to arrange the small areas into payment standard groups. Although the final rule does not specify the calculation methods for Small Area FMR estimates, HUD's practice in the Dallas, TX HUD Metro FMR Area and in the Small Area FMR demonstration sites has been to round Small Area FMR estimates to the nearest $10.00 to make it easier to arrange small areas into payment standard groups. Doing so reduces the number of payment standards PHAs would be required to administer.

    Consider an exemption for PHAs administering very few vouchers in Small Area FMR areas. The final rule exempts HUD Metropolitan FMR Areas with less than 2,500 HCVs under lease from using Small Area FMRs.

    In addition to the above, the presentation of the information in HUD's proposed revision to its PHA administrative fee formula would also soften any adverse impact by providing additional resources to small PHAs generally.

    7. Conclusion

    The majority of lessors of residential real estate and a substantial fraction of PHAs are characterized as small. If there were disproportionate effects on small entities, then a more detailed regulatory flexibility analysis would be merited. However, after an in-depth discussion of the industry structure and impact of the rule, HUD cannot conclude that there is a significant and disproportionate impact on small entities. It is true that many lessors may receive income from voucher tenants but it is not likely that they will be adversely affected once market forces are accounted for. Small PHAs could face an additional administrative burden but HUD has offered solutions to significantly reduce any burden.

    [FR Doc. 2016-27114 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4210-67-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY Internal Revenue Service 26 CFR Part 1 [TD 9787] RIN 1545-BK29 Section 707 Regarding Disguised Sales, Generally; Correction AGENCY:

    Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Treasury.

    ACTION:

    Correcting amendment.

    SUMMARY:

    This document contains corrections to final regulations (TD 9787) that were published in the Federal Register on Wednesday, October 5, 2016 (81 FR 69291). The final regulations are under sections 707 and 752 of the Internal Revenue Code.

    DATES:

    This correction is effective November 16, 2016 and is applicable on and after October 5, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Deane M. Burke or Caroline E. Hay at (202) 317-5279 (not a toll-free number).

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    The final regulations (TD 9787) that are the subject of this correction are under sections 707 and 752 of the Internal Revenue Code.

    Need for Correction

    As published, the final regulations (TD 9787) contain errors that may prove to be misleading and are in need of clarification.

    List of Subjects in 26 CFR Part 1

    Income taxes, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    Correction of Publication Accordingly, 26 CFR Part 1 is corrected by making the following correcting amendments: PART 1—INCOME TAXES Paragraph 1. The authority citation for part 1 continues to read in part as follows: Authority:

    26 U.S.C. 7805 * * *

    Section 1.707-5 also issued under 26 U.S.C. 707(a)(2)(B).

    § 1.707-5 [Amended]
    Par. 2. For each entry in § 1.707-5(f) in the “Section” column, remove the language in the “Remove” column from wherever it appears in the Example and add in its place the language in the “Add” column as set forth below: Section Remove Add Paragraph (f) Example 5(i) 2016 2017 Paragraph (f) Example 10(i) 2016 2017 Paragraph (f) Example 10(ii) 2016 2017 Paragraph (f) Example 11(i) 2016 2017 Paragraph (f) Example 11(ii) 2016 2017 Paragraph (f) Example 12(i) 2016 2017 Martin V. Franks, Chief, Publications and Regulations Branch, Legal Processing Division, Associate Chief Counsel (Procedure and Administration).
    [FR Doc. 2016-27515 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4830-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement 30 CFR Part 250 [Docket ID: BSEE-2016-0004; 17XE1700DX EEEE500000 EX1SF0000.DAQ000] RIN 1014-AA32 Oil and Gas and Sulfur Operations in the Outer Continental Shelf—Decommissioning Costs for Pipelines AGENCY:

    Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, Interior.

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    This rule amends Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) regulations requiring lessees and owners of operating rights to submit summaries of actual decommissioning expenditures incurred for certain decommissioning activities related to oil and gas and sulfur operations on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). The amendment requires lessees, owners of operating rights, and right-of-way (ROW) holders to submit summaries of actual expenditures incurred for pipeline decommissioning activities.

    DATES:

    This final rule becomes effective on December 16, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Betty Cox, Regulatory Analyst, Regulations and Standards Branch at [email protected] or by telephone at (703) 787-1616.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: BSEE's Functions and Authority

    BSEE promotes safety, protects the environment, and conserves natural resources through vigorous regulatory oversight and enforcement regarding certain activities on the OCS. BSEE derives its authority primarily from the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA), 43 U.S.C. 1331-1356a. Congress enacted OCSLA in 1953, codifying Federal control over the OCS and authorizing the Secretary of the Interior (Secretary) to, among other things, regulate oil and natural gas exploration, development, and production operations and to grant rights-of-way on the OCS. The Secretary has authorized BSEE to perform certain of these functions, including overseeing decommissioning. (See 30 CFR 250.101; 30 CFR part 250, subpart Q.) To carry out its responsibilities, BSEE regulates exploration, development, and production of oil and natural gas and pipeline operations to enhance safety and environmental protection in a way that reflects advancements in technology and new information. BSEE also conducts onsite inspections to ensure compliance with regulations, lease terms, and approved plans or permits. Detailed information concerning BSEE's regulations and guidance for the offshore industry may be found on BSEE's Web site at: www.bsee.gov/Regulations-and-Guidance/index.

    Background

    Among its responsibilities, BSEE regulates certain types of oil and gas pipelines used on the OCS. (See 30 CFR 250.1000-250.1019). In general, BSEE regulates pipelines or pipeline segments on the OCS that are operated by oil and gas producers.1 (See id.) Pipelines regulated by BSEE generally fall within two categories, “lease term” pipelines or ROW pipelines. Among other things, BSEE approves the installation, modification, and decommissioning of all lease term and ROW pipelines, and the modification or relinquishment of all pipeline ROW grants on the OCS. BSEE's regulations for decommissioning pipelines are found at 30 CFR 250.1700 through 250.1704 and 250.1750 through 250.1754. A more detailed discussion of BSEE's regulations for OCS pipelines is found in the preamble to the proposed rule for this rulemaking. (See 81 FR 53348 (Aug. 12, 2016).)

    1 BSEE also regulates transporter-operated pipelines that DOI and the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) have agreed are to be regulated by BSEE, as well as all OCS pipelines not subject to DOT regulation. See 30 CFR 250.1001.

    Purpose and Summary of Proposed and Final Amendment To Decommissioning Cost Reporting Requirements

    In 2009, BSEE's predecessor agency, the Minerals Management Service (MMS), proposed new reporting requirements related to lease assignment for lease term pipelines. (See 74 FR 25177 (May 27, 2009).) MMS also proposed to require the submission of information on expenditures for decommissioning of wells, platforms, and other facilities and for site clearance. (See id.)

    In a final rule published on December 4, 2015, BSEE amended its regulations to require lessees and owners of operating rights to submit summaries of actual decommissioning expenditures for certain required decommissioning activities within 120 days after completion of each such activity. (See 80 FR 75806.) Specifically, the final rule requires reporting of summaries of expenditures for plugging wells, removing platforms and other facilities, and clearing obstructions from sites. In addition, the final rule authorizes BSEE to require additional supporting information regarding specific decommissioning costs on a case-by-case basis. The December 2015 final rule was codified at 30 CFR 250.1704(h) and (i).

    On April 27, 2016, BSEE issued a Notice to Lessees and Operators (NTL), No. 2016-N03, Reporting Requirements for Decommissioning Expenditures on the OCS, providing guidance and clarification regarding the submission of the decommissioning cost summaries required by § 250.1704(h). On April 29, 2016, BSEE adopted a final rule revising and establishing requirements for improving well control equipment and procedures (the Well Control Rule). (See 81 FR 25888.) Among other things, effective July 28, 2016, the Well Control Rule revised paragraph (g) of § 250.1704, added a new paragraph (h), and redesignated existing paragraphs (h) and (i) as paragraphs (i) and (j), respectively. The Well Control Rule did not, however, affect the substance of those decommissioning cost reporting provisions.

    BSEE did not include reporting of expenditures for pipeline decommissioning in the December 2015 final rule because the 2009 proposed rule did not expressly refer to pipeline decommissioning expenditures. BSEE has determined, however, that accurate information about expenditures incurred for pipeline decommissioning activities is needed to better estimate future decommissioning costs for those activities.

    As BSEE explained in the December 2015 final rule, with regard to expenditures for other types of decommissioning activities, summaries of actual decommissioning expenditures will help BSEE better estimate future decommissioning costs. (See 80 FR 75806.) For the same reason, summaries of actual pipeline decommissioning expenditures will help BSEE better estimate future decommissioning costs. In addition, BSEE will share its pipeline decommissioning cost estimates—as well as all other decommissioning cost estimates—with the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) for use by BOEM in setting necessary financial assurance levels to minimize the possibility that (1) the government will incur future financial liability for decommissioning pipelines where the responsible party has failed to carry out the required decommissioning and has posted inadequate financial assurance; or (2) financial assurance requirements will exceed the amount actually necessary to cover future decommissioning liabilities.

    Accordingly, on August 12, 2016, BSEE published a proposed rule to extend the existing decommissioning cost reporting regulations to require lessees, owners of operating rights, and pipeline ROW holders to submit information regarding actual expenditures incurred for activities related to decommissioning of pipelines. (See 81 FR 53348.) Specifically, BSEE proposed to expand the scope of: (1) Existing § 250.1704(i) in order to require that lessees, owners of operating rights, and pipeline ROW holders submit certified summaries of actual expenditures for decommissioning of pipelines; and (2) existing § 250.1704(j) in order to authorize Regional Supervisors to require the submission of additional information, on a case-by-case basis, to support summaries of pipeline decommissioning expenditures submitted under § 250.1704(i). The rule did not propose to revise the existing decommissioning cost reporting provisions.

    For the reasons stated in the proposed rule and based on BSEE's evaluation of the public comments received, this rule finalizes the proposal to require lessees, owners of operating rights, and pipeline ROW holders to submit information reflecting actual expenditures incurred for the decommissioning of pipelines.2 The final rule amends paragraphs (i) and (j) of § 250.1704 to require lessees, owners of operating rights, and pipeline ROW holders to submit certified summaries of actual expenditures for decommissioning of pipelines, and to authorize Regional Supervisors to require additional information, on a case-by-case basis, as needed, to support a specific summary of such expenditures.

    2 As stated in the proposed rule, BSEE recognizes that a designated operator may submit the required summary of decommissioning costs on behalf of a lessee. (See 81 FR 53350 n.4.)

    Changes Between Proposed and Final Rules

    BSEE has made no changes to the language of the proposed rule and is finalizing the regulatory text as proposed.

    Summary of and Responses to Public Comments

    In response to the proposed rule, BSEE received one comment, which was submitted by a trade association representing producing companies and service providers to the offshore oil and natural gas industry. The full text of the comment can be viewed at: www.regulations.gov. To access the comment, enter BSEE-2016-0004 in the search box. A summary of the issues raised by the comment, with BSEE's responses, follows.

    Comment: The commenter asserted that BSEE had not provided guidance or details on how the certified summary of pipeline decommissioning expenditures should categorize and report information. The commenter stated that, at a minimum, the guidance in NTL No. 2016-N03 should be updated before the final rule is implemented to include specific guidance on decommissioning costs for pipelines, umbilicals, pipeline end terminations (PLETS), manifolds, and other equipment permitted through pipeline applications and bonding.

    Response: Subsequent to publication of the December 2015 Decommissioning Cost Reporting final rule, BSEE issued NTL No. 2016-N03, which provides guidance and clarification regarding the submission of certified decommissioning cost expenditure summaries for wells, platforms or other facilities, and for clearance of any site. Among other things, that NTL addresses the format of submitted data and recommends the submission of cost data for each decommissioning activity type, including PLETS, pipeline end manifolds, and other types of equipment being decommissioned. Notwithstanding the clarification provided by NTL No. 2016-N03, BSEE understands that supplemental guidance and clarification may be needed regarding the submission of certified summaries of pipeline decommissioning cost expenditures and expects to issue additional guidance and clarification, as future circumstances may warrant, through appropriate means (e.g., in a revised or new NTL).

    Comment: The commenter suggested that, if aggregate data are used by BSEE to estimate future decommissioning costs, these data should be made available, with specific operator information removed, to industry for benchmarking purposes. In addition, the commenter suggested that the owner or operator should have the ability to request an adjustment to a BSEE cost estimate by presenting its own decommissioning estimate data to BSEE/BOEM for review.

    Response: The commenter's suggestions do not warrant any revision to the proposed regulatory language; however, BSEE will take these suggestions into consideration as aggregated data are developed and analyzed under the final rule. Regarding the commenter's suggestion that BSEE allow the presentation of company-specific estimates for review and possible adjustment of the BSEE cost estimates, BSEE has always allowed such submissions and they will continue to be part of the BSEE process for estimating future costs.

    Comment: The commenter asserted that the phrase “actually incurred” in proposed § 250.1704(i) is ambiguous, since operators may develop a figure for the value of work done (VOWD) prior to receiving an invoice from the vendor, and the VOWD may differ from the vendor invoice that, in some cases, may not be received until more than 120 days after the decommissioning work is completed. The commenter further stated that, while the 120-day deadline for submitting a summary of expenditures may be practicable if a summary based on the VOWD is acceptable, 120 days may be insufficient if the summary is required to be based on actual invoices for services received.

    Response: BSEE disagrees that the phrase “expenditures actually incurred” is ambiguous. BSEE is requiring a summary of actual decommissioning expenditures for pipelines, using the same terminology used in the December 2015 final rule for submitting summaries of actual expenditures for decommissioning of wells, platforms, or other facilities and for site clearance. Such certified summaries are based on actual invoice data. By contrast, VOWD estimates may not accurately reflect the actual decommissioning costs and could negatively impact future BSEE decommissioning cost estimates. Accordingly, submitting a VOWD would not satisfy the requirement of this rule.

    Regarding the commenter's assertion that 120 days may not be enough time to submit a certified summary based on actual invoice data, BSEE expects to apply the same guidance under this new rule as that contained in NTL No. 2016-N03, i.e.:

    BSEE appreciates that there could be situations where it may take longer than the 120-day reporting period allowed by regulation for lessees to receive and process all decommissioning related invoices. In such cases, BSEE will consider granting an extension when timely requested and sufficiently justified. BSEE would rather receive a single complete submission with a reporting period extension than a preliminary summary followed by some number of revisions/supplements. However, failure to submit decommissioning cost summaries in the timeframe required by the regulation, or as extended by BSEE, may result in BSEE's issuance of an Incident of Noncompliance.

    BSEE expects to address any special situations that may warrant an extension of the deadline for submitting a summary of pipeline decommissioning expenditures in the same manner as requests to extend the deadline for summaries of other decommissioning costs.

    Procedural Matters Regulatory Planning and Review (Executive Orders 12866 and 13563)

    Executive Order (E.O.) 12866 provides that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), will review all significant regulatory actions. BSEE has determined that this final rule is not a significant regulatory action as defined by section 3(f) of E.O. 12866 because:

    • It is not expected to have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more;

    • It will not adversely affect in a material way the economy, productivity, competition, jobs, the environment, public health or safety, or State, Tribal, or local governments or communities;

    • It will not create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with an action taken or planned by another agency;

    • It will not materially alter the budgetary impact of entitlements, grants, user fees, or loan programs, or the rights or obligations of their recipients; and

    • It will not raise novel legal or policy issues arising out of legal mandates, the President's priorities, or the principles set forth in E.O. 12866.

    Accordingly, BSEE has not prepared an economic analysis beyond the analysis required under the Paperwork Reduction Act, and OIRA has not reviewed this rule under E.O. 12866. E.O. 13563 reaffirms the principles of E.O. 12866 while calling for improvements in the Nation's regulatory system to promote predictability, reduce uncertainty, and use the best, most innovative, and least burdensome tools for achieving regulatory ends. E.O. 13563 directs agencies to consider regulatory approaches that reduce burdens and maintain flexibility and freedom of choice for the public where these approaches are relevant, feasible, and consistent with regulatory objectives. It also emphasizes that regulations must be based on the best available science and that the rulemaking process must allow for public participation and an open exchange of ideas. BSEE developed this rule in a manner consistent with these requirements.

    Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA)

    BSEE certifies that this final rule will not have a significant economic effect on a substantial number of small entities under the RFA (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.). This rule potentially affects offshore lessees, owners of operating rights and other operators, and pipeline ROW holders who perform decommissioning activities under 30 CFR part 250, subpart Q. In the December 2015 final rule, using the Small Business Administration's North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes 211111 (Crude Petroleum and Natural Gas Extraction) and 213111 (Drilling Oil and Gas Wells), we estimated that a substantial number, about 90 of the 130 active companies potentially affected by that rule (i.e., lessees and operators), would be considered small entities. (See 80 FR 75808.) However, we concluded that the final rule would not have a significant economic effect on those small entities because the cost of preparing decommissioning cost summaries is not significant. (See id.)

    This final rule will affect some additional companies (i.e., ROW holders that were not covered by the December 2015 final rule as lessees or owners of operating rights) that will be required to submit pipeline decommissioning cost summaries. Using more recent information than was available when we published the December 2015 final rule, we estimate that this final rule's requirement to report pipeline decommissioning costs could affect approximately 111 lessees, owners of operating rights, and ROW holders that currently own or control DOI pipelines, including many companies already covered by the December 2015 final rule. Of these 111 potentially affected entities, we estimate that a substantial number (66 companies) are small entities. Therefore, this final rule will affect a substantial number of small entities.

    However, because the final rule requires only summary reports of actual expenditures related to pipeline decommissioning activities, it will not impose significant new economic impacts on any affected small entities. The requirement to submit pipeline decommissioning cost summaries will not result in significant additional costs or burdens for any affected entity. As indicated in the Paperwork Reduction Act section of this document, the annual burden of the rule is estimated to be only 519 hours in total for all affected entities to prepare and submit their pipeline decommissioning cost summaries. Accordingly, since the changes reflected in this final rule will not have a significant economic effect on a substantial number of small entities, the RFA does not require BSEE to prepare a regulatory flexibility analysis for this rule.

    Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA)

    This rule is not a major rule under the SBREFA (5 U.S.C. 804(2)). This final rule will not:

    • Have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more;

    • Cause a major increase in costs or prices for consumers, individual industries, Federal, State, or local government agencies, or geographic regions; or

    • Have significant adverse effects on competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or the ability of U.S.-based enterprises to compete with foreign-based enterprises.

    Your comments are important. The Small Business and Agriculture Regulatory Enforcement Ombudsman and 10 Regional Fairness Boards were established to receive comments from small businesses about Federal agency enforcement actions. The Ombudsman will annually evaluate the enforcement activities and rate each agency's responsiveness to small business. If you wish to comment on the actions of BSEE, call 1-888-734-3247. You may comment to the Small Business Administration (SBA) without fear of retaliation. Allegations of discrimination/retaliation filed with the SBA will be investigated for appropriate action.

    Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

    This final rule will not impose an unfunded mandate on State, Tribal, or local governments or the private sector of more than $100 million per year. This rule also will not have a significant or unique effect on State, Tribal, or local governments or the private sector. Thus, a statement containing the information required by the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (2 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) is not required.

    Takings Implication Assessment (E.O. 12630)

    Under the criteria in E.O. 12630, this final rule will not effect a taking or otherwise have takings implications. This rule is not a governmental action capable of interference with constitutionally protected property rights. Therefore, a Takings Implication Assessment is not required.

    Federalism (E.O. 13132)

    Under the criteria in Executive Order 13132, this final rule does not have federalism implications. This rule will not have a substantial direct effect on the States or the relationship between the Federal and State governments. To the extent that State and local governments have a role in OCS activities, this final rule will not affect that role. Accordingly, a federalism summary impact statement is not required.

    Civil Justice Reform (E.O. 12988)

    This final rule complies with the requirements of Executive Order 12988 (E.O. 12988), Civil Justice Reform (February 7, 1996). Specifically, this rule:

    • Meets the criteria of section 3(a) of E.O. 12988 requiring that all regulations be reviewed to eliminate drafting errors and ambiguity and be written to minimize litigation; and

    • Meets the criteria of section 3(b)(2) of E.O. 12988 requiring that all regulations be written in clear language and contain clear legal standards.

    Consultation With Indian Tribal Governments (E.O. 13175)

    We have evaluated this final rule under the Department's tribal consultation policy, under Departmental Manual Part 512 Chapters 4 and 5, and under the criteria in E.O. 13175 and have determined that it will have no substantial direct effects on federally recognized Indian tribes. As a result, consultation under the Department's tribal consultation policy is not required.

    Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA)

    This rule contains new information collection (IC) requirements and submission to the OMB under the PRA of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.) is required. The OMB has approved the IC in this rule under OMB Control Number 1014-0030, expiring on November 30, 2019. We estimate the annual burden associated with this IC to be 519 hours per year.

    The title of the collection of information for this rule is 30 CFR part 250, subpart Q, Decommissioning Costs for Pipelines. Potential respondents include approximately 111 OCS lessees, owners of operating rights, and ROW holders. Responses to this collection are mandatory. The frequency of response is on occasion. The IC does not include questions of a sensitive nature. BSEE will protect confidential commercial and proprietary information according to section 26 of OCSLA (43 U.S.C. 1352), FOIA (5 U.S.C. 552) and DOI's implementing regulations (43 CFR part 2), and according to 30 CFR 250.197 (Data and information to be made available to the public or for limited inspection).

    Once the requirements of this rulemaking have been codified, BSEE will consolidate these additional burden hours into the primary collection for 30 CFR part 250, subpart Q, under OMB Control Number 1014-0010 (expiration November 30, 2016; 15,524 burden hours and $1,686,396 non-hour cost burdens). There are no non-hour cost burdens associated with this rulemaking.

    The following table is a breakdown of the burden estimate:

    We received one comment in response to the proposed rule pertaining to the information collection. Please see the Summary of and Responses to Public Comments section in this preamble. Based on the comment received, we are increasing the burden to reflect requests for extension to the 120-day reporting period (+ 19 hours).

    ER16NO16.013

    An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and you are not required to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. The public may comment at any time on the accuracy of the IC burden in this rule and may submit any comments to the Department of the Interior, Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, Attention: Regulations and Standards Branch, VA-ORP, 45600 Woodland Road, Sterling, VA 20166.

    National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA)

    This rule meets the criteria set forth in 516 Departmental Manual (DM) 15.4C(1) for a categorical exclusion because it involves modification of existing regulations, the impacts of which would be limited to administrative or economic effects with minimal environmental impacts.

    We have also analyzed this rule to determine if it involves any of the extraordinary circumstances set forth in 43 CFR 46.215 that would require an environmental assessment or an environmental impact statement for actions otherwise eligible for a categorical exclusion. We have concluded that this rule does not involve any of the listed extraordinary circumstances.

    Data Quality Act

    In developing this rule, we did not conduct or use a study, experiment, or survey requiring peer review under the Data Quality Act (44 U.S.C. 3516 et seq., Pub. L. 106-554, app. C sec. 515, 114 Stat. 2763, 2763A-153-154).

    Effects on the Nation's Energy Supply (E.O. 13211)

    This rule is not a significant energy action under Executive Order 13211 (E.O. 13211) because:

    • It is not a significant regulatory action under E.O. 12866;

    • It is not likely to have a significant adverse effect on the supply, distribution or use of energy; and

    • It has not been designated as a significant energy action by the Administrator of OIRA.

    List of Subjects in 30 CFR Part 250

    Administrative practice and procedure, Continental shelf, Environmental impact statements, Environmental protection, Government contracts, Investigations, Oil and gas exploration, Penalties, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Sulfur.

    Dated: November 1, 2016. Amanda C. Leiter, Acting Assistant Secretary, Land and Minerals Management.

    For the reasons stated in the preamble, BSEE amends 30 CFR part 250 as follows:

    PART 250—OIL AND GAS AND SULFUR OPERATIONS IN THE OUTER CONTINENTAL SHELF 1. The authority citation for part 250 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    30 U.S.C. 1751, 31 U.S.C. 9701, 33 U.S.C. 1321(j)(1)(C), 43 U.S.C. 1334.

    2. Amend § 250.1704 by revising paragraphs (i) and (j) in the table to read as follows:
    § 250.1704 What decommissioning applications and reports must I submit and when must I submit them? Decommissioning Applications and Reports Table Decommissioning applications and reports When to submit Instructions *         *         *         *         *         *         * (i) A certified summary of expenditures for permanently plugging any well, removal of any platform or other facility, clearance of any site after wells have been plugged or platforms or facilities removed, and decommissioning of pipelines Within 120 days after completion of each decommissioning activity specified in this paragraph Submit to the Regional Supervisor a complete summary of expenditures actually incurred for each decommissioning activity (including, but not limited to, the use of rigs, vessels, equipment, supplies and materials; transportation of any kind; personnel; and services). Include in, or attach to, the summary a certified statement by an authorized representative of your company attesting to the truth, accuracy and completeness of the summary. The Regional Supervisor may provide specific instructions or guidance regarding how to submit the certified summary. (j) If requested by the Regional Supervisor, additional information in support of any decommissioning activity expenditures included in a summary submitted under paragraph (i) of this section Within a reasonable time as determined by the Regional Supervisor The Regional Supervisor will review the summary and may provide specific instructions or guidance regarding the submission of additional information (including, but not limited to, copies of contracts and invoices), if requested, to complete or otherwise support the summary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27416 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310-VH-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement 30 CFR Parts 700, 701, 773, 774, 777, 779, 780, 783, 784, 785, 800, 816, 817, 824, and 827 [Docket ID: OSM-2010-0021; S1D1S SS08011000 SX064A000 178S180110; S2D2S SS08011000 SX064A000 17XS501520] Stream Protection Rule; Final Environmental Impact Statement AGENCY:

    Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, Department of the Interior.

    ACTION:

    Notice of availability; final environmental impact statement.

    SUMMARY:

    We, the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSMRE), announce the availability of the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for the Stream Protection Rule developed pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).

    DATES:

    The final EIS is available on November 16, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Copies of the FEIS are available for public inspection at the following OSMRE locations:

    • Administrative Record, Room 101 SIB, 1951 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20240, (Phone: 202-208-2823).

    • Appalachian Regional Office, Three Parkway Center, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15220 (Phone: (412) 937-2815).

    • Mid-Continent Regional Office, William L. Beatty Federal Building, 501 Belle Street, Room 216, Alton, Illinois 62002 (Phone: (618) 463-6460).

    • Western Regional Office, 1999 Broadway, Suite 3320, Denver, Colorado 80201 (Phone: (303) 293-5000).

    • Charleston Field Office, 1027 Virginia Street East, Charleston, West Virginia 25301 (Phone: (304) 347-7158).

    • Knoxville Field Office, 710 Locust Street, 2nd floor, Knoxville, Tennessee 37902 (Phone: (865) 545-4103).

    • Lexington Field Office, 2675 Regency Road, Lexington, Kentucky 40503 (Phone: (859) 260-3902).

    • Beckley Area Office, 313 Harper Park Drive, Beckley, West Virginia 25801 (Phone: (304) 255-5265).

    • Harrisburg Area Office, 215 Limekiln Road, New Cumberland, Pennsylvania 17070 (Phone: (717) 730-6985).

    • Albuquerque Area Office, 100 Sun Avenue NE., Pan American Building, Suite 330, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87109 (Phone: (505) 761-8989).

    • Casper Area Office, Dick Cheney Federal Building, 150 East B Street, Casper, Wyoming 82601 (Phone: (307) 261-6550).

    • Birmingham Field Office, 135 Gemini Circle, Suite 215, Homewood, Alabama 35209 (Phone: (205) 290-7282).

    • Tulsa Field Office, 1645 South 101st East Avenue, Suite 145, Tulsa, Oklahoma 74128 (Phone: (918) 581-6430).

    Electronic copies of the FEIS are available at:

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. The Docket ID for the FEIS is OSM-2010-0021.

    • OSMRE Web site: www.osmre.gov.

    In addition, a limited number of CD copies of the FEIS are available upon request. You may obtain a CD by contacting the person identified in FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Robin Ferguson, Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, U.S. Department of the Interior, 1951 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20240. Telephone: 202-208-2802. Email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    Significant advances in scientific knowledge and mining and reclamation techniques have occurred in the more than 30 years that have elapsed since the enactment of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977, 30 U.S.C. 1201 et seq., and the adoption of Federal regulations implementing that law. On July 27, 2015, OSMRE proposed the Stream Protection Rule for the primary purpose of updating its regulations and providing regulatory certainty to industry using these advances in scientific knowledge to minimize the adverse impacts of surface coal mining and underground mining operations on surface water, groundwater, fish, wildlife, and related environmental values, with particular emphasis on protecting or restoring streams and aquatic ecosystems. (See 80 FR 44436.)

    The draft environmental impact statement (DEIS) for the proposed rule was made available for public review and comment on July 17, 2015. (See 80 FR 42535.) After an extension was granted, the comment period closed on October 26, 2015. (See 80 FR 54590.) During the comment period, OSMRE held six public hearings in Colorado, Kentucky, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia, and received approximately 95,000 comments on the proposed rule, DEIS, and the draft Regulatory Impact Analysis.

    The FEIS for the Stream Protection Rule analyzes the environmental, socioeconomic, and other effects of the preferred alternative—Alternative 8, as revised—and a reasonable range of other alternatives, including a No Action Alternative. The FEIS, including Alternative 8, has been revised, as appropriate, in response to comments and other information received on the DEIS, proposed rule, and draft Regulatory Impact Analysis. It also includes the input of cooperating agencies.

    Authority:

    40 CFR 1506.6, 40 CFR 1506.1

    Dated: November 11, 2016. Sterling Rideout, Assistant Director, Program Support.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27655 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310-05-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 97 [FRL-9955-23-OAR] Allocations of Cross-State Air Pollution Rule Allowances From New Unit Set-Asides for the 2016 Compliance Year AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Final rule; notice of data availability (NODA).

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is providing notice of emission allowance allocations to certain units under the new unit set-aside (NUSA) provisions of the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule (CSAPR) federal implementation plans (FIPs). EPA has completed final calculations for the second round of NUSA allowance allocations for the 2016 compliance year of the CSAPR NOX Ozone Season Trading Program. EPA has posted spreadsheets showing the second-round 2016 NUSA allocations of CSAPR NOX Ozone Season allowances to new units as well as the allocations to existing units of the remaining CSAPR NOX Ozone Season allowances not allocated to new units in either round of the 2016 NUSA allocation process. EPA will record the allocated CSAPR NOX Ozone Season allowances in sources' Allowance Management System (AMS) accounts by November 15, 2016.

    DATES:

    November 16, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Questions concerning this action should be addressed to Robert Miller at (202) 343-9077 or [email protected] or to Kenon Smith at (202) 343-9164 or [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Under the CSAPR FIPs, a portion of each state budget for each of the four CSAPR trading programs 1 is reserved as a NUSA from which allowances are allocated to eligible units through an annual one- or two-round process. EPA has described the CSAPR NUSA allocation process in three NODAs previously published this year in the Federal Register (81 FR 33636 May 27, 2016; 81 FR 50630 August 2, 2016; 81 FR 63156 September 14, 2016). In the most recent of these previous NODAs, EPA provided notice of preliminary lists of new units eligible for second-round 2016 NUSA allocations of CSAPR NOX Ozone Season allowances and provided an opportunity for the public to submit objections.

    1 In the recently finalized Cross-State Air Pollution Rule Update for the 2008 Ozone NAAQS (CSAPR Update Rule), 81 FR 74504 (October 26, 2016), EPA is establishing new or modified FIP requirements for EGUs in 22 states to address transported pollution with regard to the 2008 ozone NAAQS, including requirements to participate in a new fifth CSAPR trading program—the CSAPR NOX Ozone Season Group 2 Trading Program—for emissions occurring in 2017 and later years. In the same rule, EPA is also withdrawing the FIP provisions requiring EGUs in 24 states to participate in the existing trading program addressing transported pollution with regard to the 1997 ozone NAAQS for emissions occurring after 2016. (When the CSAPR Update rule takes effect in December 2016, the existing program will be renamed the CSAPR NOX Ozone Season Group 1 Trading Program.) The 2016 allowance allocations described in this notice concern the existing program and are not affected by the CSAPR Update Rule.

    EPA received no objections to the preliminary lists of new units eligible for second-round 2016 NUSA allocations of CSAPR NOX Ozone Season allowances whose availability was announced in the September 14 NODA. EPA is therefore making second-round 2016 NUSA allocations of CSAPR NOX Ozone Season allowances to the new units identified on these lists in accordance with the procedures set forth in 40 CFR 97.512(a)(9) and (12).

    As described in the September 14 NODA, any allowances remaining in the CSAPR NOX Ozone Season NUSA for a given state and control period after the second round of NUSA allocations to new units are to be allocated to the existing units in the state according to the procedures set forth in 40 CFR 97.512(a)(10) and (12). EPA has determined that CSAPR NOX Ozone Season allowances do remain in the NUSAs for a number of states following completion of second-round 2016 NUSA allocations; accordingly, EPA is allocating these allowances to existing units. The NUSA allowances are generally allocated to the existing units in proportion to the allocations previously made to the existing units under 40 CFR 97.511(a)(1), adjusted for rounding.

    Under 40 CFR 97.512(b)(10), any allowances remaining in the CSAPR NOX Ozone Season Indian country NUSA for a given state and control period after the second round of Indian country NUSA allocations to new units are added to the NUSA for that state or are made available for allocation by the state pursuant to an approved SIP revision. No new units eligible for allocations of CSAPR NOX Ozone Season allowances from any 2016 Indian country NUSA have been identified, and no state has an approved SIP revision governing allocation of 2016 CSAPR NOX Ozone Season allowances. The Indian country NUSA allowances are therefore being added to the NUSAs for the respective states and are included in the pools of allowances that are being allocated to existing units under 40 CFR 97.512(10) and (12).

    The final unit-by-unit data and allowance allocation calculations are set forth in Excel spreadsheets titled “CSAPR_NUSA_2016_NOx_OS_2nd_Round_Final_Data_New_Units”, and “CSAPR_NUSA_2016_NOx_OS_2nd_Round_Final_Data_Existing_Units”, available on EPA's Web site at https://www3.epa.gov/airtransport/CSAPR/actions.html.

    Pursuant to CSAPR's allowance recordation timing requirements, the allocated NUSA allowances will be recorded in sources' AMS accounts by November 15, 2016. EPA notes that an allocation or lack of allocation of allowances to a given unit does not constitute a determination that CSAPR does or does not apply to the unit. EPA also notes that NUSA allocations of CSAPR NOX Ozone Season allowances are subject to potential correction if a unit to which NUSA allowances have been allocated for a given compliance year is not actually an affected unit as of May 1 of the compliance year.2

    2See 40 CFR 97.511(c).

    Authority:

    40 CFR 97.511(b).

    Dated: November 2, 2016. Reid P. Harvey, Director, Clean Air Markets Division, Office of Atmospheric Programs, Office of Air and Radiation.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27541 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services 42 CFR Parts 482, 483, 484, and 485 [CMS-3178-CN] RIN 0938-AO91 Medicare and Medicaid Programs; Emergency Preparedness Requirements for Medicare and Medicaid Participating Providers and Suppliers; Correction AGENCY:

    Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), HHS.

    ACTION:

    Final rule; correction.

    SUMMARY:

    This document corrects typographical errors that appeared in the final rule published in the Federal Register on September 16, 2016 entitled “Medicare and Medicaid Programs; Emergency Preparedness Requirements for Medicare and Medicaid Participating Providers and Suppliers.”

    DATES:

    This correcting document is effective November 15, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ronisha Blackstone, (410) 786-6882.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    I. Background

    In FR Doc. 2016-21404 which appeared in the September 16, 2016 Federal Register (81 FR 63860), entitled “Medicare and Medicaid Programs; Emergency Preparedness Requirements for Medicare and Medicaid Participating Providers and Suppliers”, there were a number of typographical errors that are identified and corrected in the Correction of Errors section below. The provisions in this correction document are effective as if they had been included in the document published September 16, 2016. Accordingly, the corrections are effective November 15, 2016.

    II. Summary of Errors

    On page 64030, we inadvertently omitted a paragraph number (that is, paragraph (xii)) in numbering the paragraphs in § 482.15(h)(1).

    On page 64032, we inadvertently omitted a paragraph number (that is, paragraph (xii)) in numbering the paragraphs in § 483.73(g)(1).

    On page 64034, we made a typographical error in numbering the paragraphs in § 484.22(d)(1).

    On page 64037, we inadvertently omitted a paragraph number (that is, paragraph (xii)) in numbering the paragraphs in § 485.625(g)(1).

    III. Waiver of Proposed Rulemaking

    We ordinarily publish a notice of proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register to provide a period for public comment before the provisions of a rule take effect in accordance with section 553(b) of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) (5 U.S.C. 553(b)). However, we can waive this notice and comment procedure if the Secretary finds, for good cause, that the notice and comment process is impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to the public interest, and incorporates a statement of the finding and the reasons therefore in the notice.

    Section 553(d) of the APA ordinarily requires a 30-day delay in effective date of final rules after the date of their publication in the Federal Register. This 30-day delay in effective date can be waived, however, if an agency finds for good cause that the delay is impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to the public interest, and the agency incorporates a statement of the findings and its reasons in the rule issued.

    We believe that this correcting document does not constitute a rule that would be subject to the APA notice and comment or delayed effective date requirements. This correcting document corrects typographical errors in the regulations text of the final rule but does not make substantive changes to the policies that were adopted in the final rule. As a result, this correcting document is intended to ensure that the regulations text in the final rule accurately reflect the policies adopted in that final rule.

    In addition, even if this were a rule to which the notice and comment procedures and delayed effective date requirements applied, we find that there is good cause to waive such requirements. Undertaking further notice and comment procedures to incorporate the corrections in this document into the final rule or delaying the effective date would be contrary to the public interest because it is in the public's interest for providers and suppliers to receive the appropriate revisions in as timely a manner as possible, and to ensure that the Emergency Preparedness Requirements for Medicare and Medicaid Participating Providers and Suppliers final rule accurately reflects our policies. Furthermore, such procedures would be unnecessary, as we are not altering our policies, but rather, we are simply implementing correctly the policies that we previously proposed, received comment on, and subsequently finalized. This correcting document is intended solely to ensure that the Emergency Preparedness Requirements for Medicare and Medicaid Participating Providers and Suppliers final rule accurately reflects these revisions. Therefore, we believe we have good cause to waive the notice and comment and effective date requirements.

    IV. Correction of Errors

    In FR Doc. 2016-21404 of September 16, 2016 (81 FR 63860), make the following corrections:

    § 482.15 [Corrected]
    1. On page 64030, first column, in § 482.15(h)(1), correctly redesignate paragraph (h)(1)(xiii) as paragraph (h)(1)(xii).
    § 483.73 [Corrected]
    2. On page 64032, second column, in § 483.73(g)(1), correctly redesignate paragraph (g)(1)(xiii) as paragraph (g)(1)(xii).
    § 484.22 [Corrected]
    3. On page 64034, second column, in § 484.22(d)(1), correct the paragraph designated “(ii) Demonstrate staff” is to read “(iv) Demonstrate staff”.
    § 485.625 [Corrected]
    4. On page 64037, third column, in § 485.625(g)(1), correctly redesignate paragraph (g)(1)(xiii) as paragraph (g)(1)(xii).
    Dated: November 9, 2016. Madhura Valverde, Executive Secretary to the Department, Department of Health and Human Services.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27478 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4120-01-P
    FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION 47 CFR Part 64 [CG Docket No. 02-278; FCC 16-99] Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 AGENCY:

    Federal Communications Commission.

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    In this document, the Commission modifies its rules under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) to implement a provision of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 that excepts from the TCPA's prior-express-consent requirement autodialed and prerecorded calls “made solely to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States.” While certain debt servicing calls are permitted under the exception, the Commission caps the number of permitted calls to wireless numbers at no more than three within a thirty-day period; ensures that consumers have the right to stop such calls at any time; and adopts other consumer protections. These measures implement Congress's mandate to ensure the TCPA does not thwart important calls that can help consumers avoid debt troubles while preserving consumers' ultimate right to determine what calls they wish to receive.

    DATES:

    This Order was issued August 11, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Kristi Thornton, Consumer Policy Division, Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau, at (202) 418-2467 or email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This is a summary of the Commission's Rules and Regulations Implementing the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991, Report and Order, document FCC 16-99, adopted on August 2, 2016, and released on August 11, 2016, in CG Docket No. 02-278. The full text of document FCC 16-99 will be available for public inspection and copying via ECFS, and during regular business hours at the FCC Reference Information Center, Portals II, 445 12th Street SW., Room CY-A257, Washington, DC 20554. To request materials in accessible formats for people with disabilities (Braille, large print, electronic files, audio format), send an email to [email protected] or call the Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau at (202) 418-0530 (voice), (844) 432-2272 (videophone), or (202) 418-0432 (TTY).

    Synopsis

    1. The Commission adopts rules to implement the Budget Act's amendments to the TCPA, including—based on substantial record support, and in furtherance of the TCPA's consumer-protection goals—restrictions on the number and duration of calls that may be made pursuant to the amendments. Among other things, the Commission determines who may make covered calls, limits the number of federal debt collection calls that may be made, and determines who may be called. The Commission also creates rules to, among other things:

    • Permit calls made by debt collectors when the loan is in delinquency, and by debt servicers following a specific, time-sensitive event affecting the amount or timing of payment due, and in the 30 days before such an event.

    • Determine that consumers have a right to stop the autodialed, artificial-voice, and prerecorded-voice servicing and collection calls regarding a federal debt to wireless numbers at any point the consumer wishes.

    • Specify that covered calls may be made by the owner of the debt or its contractor, to: (1) The wireless telephone number the debtor provided at the time the debt was incurred; (2) a phone number subsequently provided by the debtor to the owner of the debt or its contractor; and (3) a wireless telephone number the owner of the debt or its contractor has obtained from an independent source, provided that the number actually is the debtor's telephone number.

    2. Once information collection requirements of the revised § 64.1200(j)(3), (j)(4) have been approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), the Commission will publish a document in the Federal Register (1) revising §§ 64.1200(a)(1)(iii); (a)(3)(iv), (v), and (vi); (f)(17); (i); and (j); and (2) announcing the effective date of these revisions to be set at 60 days after publication of that document in the Federal Register.

    Covered Calls

    3. “Solely to Collect a Debt.” The Budget Act excepts covered calls from the prior-express-consent requirement when they are “solely to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States.” The Commission begins by interpreting the statutory phrase “solely to collect a debt” so as to determine whether calls are covered. Because the statutory term “solely to collect a debt” is ambiguous, the Commission has discretion to reasonably interpret that phrase.

    4. The Commission rejects a subjective standard of what a caller may intend when determining whether a call is a covered call and instead looks to objective characteristics of the call. The Commission notes that an objective standard is consistent with its approach to other aspects of the TCPA, such as the meaning of “called party” for purposes of reassigned wireless numbers. Furthermore, a subjective standard would be difficult to administer, while an objective standard enables the Commission to look at actual, measurable characteristics of a call.

    5. In the 2016 NPRM, the Commission asked whether covered calls should begin at delinquency or default. Several commenters support the proposal that covered calls begin at delinquency, stating that calls during delinquency can assist a debtor in determining whether alternative payment plans are an option. The FTC staff's comments, however, promote default as the starting point for covered calls. They argue that the FDCPA uses default as the “touchstone for coverage,” and that those collecting debts that were not in default when their agency obtained them are not considered debt collectors under the act. Because the amended TCPA is not limited to third-party debt collectors, however, this distinction is less important and the reasoning for using default rather than delinquency as an initiating event is likewise less persuasive.

    6. The Commission interprets “solely to collect a debt,” and, therefore, calls made pursuant to the exception created in the Budget Act, to be limited to debts that are delinquent at the time the call is made or to debts that are at imminent risk of delinquency as a result of the terms or operation of the loan program itself. As a practical matter, this means that, at the time the call is made, the debt is delinquent or there is an imminent, non-speculative risk of delinquency due to a specific, time-sensitive event that affects the amount or timing of payments due, such as a deadline to recertify eligibility for an alternative repayment plan or the end of a deferment period. Many federal loan programs offer various alternate and income-based repayment options for which a debtor might qualify at various times during the life of the debt, and the amount or timing of payments due can vary significantly following expiration of a deferral period or an alternate payment plan. For example, some income-based repayment plans for student loans allow a debtor to make a monthly payment of zero dollars without being considered delinquent or in default, but higher monthly payments are required automatically if the debtor does not periodically recertify that he continues to qualify for the program. As such, calls regarding changes in the amount or timing of payments are directly related to the collection of the underlying debt in that they can ensure payments that would likely otherwise would not be made.

    7. Some commenters argue that the Commission may not limit covered calls to those that are “delinquent” or in “default” because the Budget Act did not include such limiting language. For example, ACA states: “Congress made absolutely no mention of the [exception] being limited to calls made post delinquency or post-default. As a result it would be inappropriate for the Commission to read such a limitation into the amendment.” The Commission disagrees with regard to its discretion to interpret the statutory language, but notes that it is not limiting covered calls only to those made after default or delinquency. As commenters note, the Supreme Court has confirmed that a person or entity “collects” a debt by attempting to obtain payment on it. Thus, the Commission believes that covered calls must have a reasonable nexus to seeking to obtain payment and that the calls permitted under the Commission's interpretation of “solely to collect” have such a nexus. In contrast, calls outside the scope of covered calls lack such a nexus because the risk of delinquency would be too speculative and too far removed (i.e., not imminent) from an event affecting the amount or timing of payments due.

    8. Other commenters argue that covered calls should begin before delinquency because calls that occur after delinquency or default are “too late to prevent damage to the consumer's credit profile and fail[] to allow the borrower to receive timely information to choose the repayment plan best suited for the borrower's unique circumstances.” The Commission agrees. Certain calls to service a debt owed to or guaranteed by the government may be so closely tied to an imminent and non-speculative risk of delinquency as to also be “solely to collect a debt.” These calls pertain to specific, time-sensitive events that affect the amount or timing of payments due. Once these time-sensitive events are sufficiently imminent, calls about these events are no longer just about a debt, but are solely about the collection of a debt. The time-sensitive nature of these calls necessitates that they are “solely to collect a debt” for only a limited time—following the event and in the 30 days before such an event. Any earlier and the calls are too speculative and attenuated for the purpose of the call to be “solely to collect a debt.”

    9. The record indicates that these debt servicing calls help a debtor avoid delinquency or default, which can preserve the debtor's payment history and credit rating, and help maintain eligibility for future loans. The potential value of these servicing calls to debtors by helping them avoid delinquency or default, and the probability that servicing calls will create conditions that allow debts to be more readily collected by the United States, lead the Commission to determine that certain servicing calls should be included in the interpretation of “solely to collect a debt.”

    10. A caller, therefore, need not wait until a debtor is delinquent to begin making certain debt servicing calls. Rather a caller may make debt servicing calls following a specific, time-sensitive event that affects the amount or timing of payments due, such as a recertification deadline or the end of a deferment period, and in the 30 days before such an event. For purposes of the limits on the number of covered calls, no debt servicing calls will be permitted except those regarding an approaching deadline or a change in status (deferment, forbearance, rehabilitation), calls regarding enrollment or reenrollment in income-driven or income-based repayment plans, and calls regarding similar time-sensitive events or deadlines affecting the amount or timing of payments due. While commenters list other pre-delinquency calls they would like the Commission to include in the list of debt servicing calls for purposes of the Budget Act amendments, the Commission declines to do so. This list of calls the Commission is permitting as covered debt servicing calls includes the most-requested debt servicing calls and includes calls both to enroll debtors in consumer-friendly programs and to keep them enrolled in those programs. It also includes calls aimed at alerting debtors when significant events will occur that will change their payment patterns. The list does not include calls regarding routine events, such as reminders about scheduled upcoming payments. The Commission would consider a routine event one that occurs by operation of the contract alone, as contrasted with the events described above, which require affirmative steps by the debtor to take advantage of the provisions of the debt contract. These included calls, which often increase the probability that debts will be more readily collected and that a debtor will avoid delinquency, achieve the desired result of enabling the caller to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States and simultaneously can benefit the debtor. The Commission's interpretation of covered calls permit no debt servicing calls unless the call follows one of these specific, time-sensitive events, and in the 30 days before such an event.

    11. “Owed to or guaranteed by the United States.” The Commission turns next to the types of debts that are included in the phrase “owed to or guaranteed by the United States.” The Commission determines that, for TCPA purposes, this phrase includes only debts for which the United States is currently the owner or guarantor of the debt. The Budget Act amendments specify that covered calls may be made regarding “debts owed to or guaranteed by the United States.” Because the Commission lacks a developed record on the issue, it does not seek to define or determine with particularity exactly which debts are included in or excluded from this phrase; like commenter SLSA, the Commission is cognizant of the “variety of types of debts covered by the provision,” and while the Commission does not “believe that the definitions applicable to each specific federal program should be used to [automatically] determine whether debt in that program is considered owed or guaranteed by the United States,” the Commission views such definitions—and any agency or judicial interpretations of them—as highly relevant evidence regarding whether a debt is “owed to or guaranteed by the United States.”

    12. The Commission clarifies that the debt must be currently owed to or guaranteed by the federal government at the time the call is made. Debts that have been satisfied are not among the covered debts, and debts that have been sold in their entirety by the federal government are, likewise, not covered. In these cases, the debt is no longer “owed to . . . the United States.” The Commission notes that basic contract principles dictate that when an owner sells an item, it no longer belongs to the original owner, but to the purchaser. Likewise, the purchaser of a debt is owed the repayment obligation, not the prior obligee. For example, a debt is not still “owed to . . . the United States” if the right to repayment is transferred in whole to anyone other than the United States, or a collection agency that has acquired ownership of the debt from the federal government collects the funds and then remits to the federal government a percentage of the amount collected. In such circumstances, the debt is no longer owed to the United States and the rules permit no calls under this exception.

    13. Who may be called? The Commission next turns to the question of who may be called using the exception created by the Budget Act. The Commission determines that, because calls made pursuant to the exception must be made “solely to collect a debt,” the covered calls may only be made to the debtor or another person or entity legally responsible for paying the debt. Calls are not permitted to other persons listed on the debt paperwork, such as references or witnesses, under FCC rules. These persons are not liable for the debt; consequently, calls to these persons cannot be “solely to collect” the debt. Senators and Members of Congress support the decision to limit covered calls in this way, writing: “The regulations should limit the calls to those made just to the debtors” and “[r]estrict the calls and texts to those made just to debtors—not their family or friends.” Another Senator writes separately, urging: “Calls to persons who are not the borrower should be eliminated.” Consumer groups concur, stating “the only reasonable way to read the phrase `solely to collect a debt' is to exclude all calls to persons who do not owe the debt.” The FTC staff also supports this limitation, stating “FTC staff recommends that covered calls be limited to calls directed at the person or persons obligated to pay the debt.”

    14. Other commenters, however, urge the Commission to permit covered calls to persons other than the debtor. Navient, in particular, comments on the need to call the parents, relatives, and references of a borrower in order to locate the borrower. Navient writes: “[C]alling numbers obtained through skip tracing is sometimes the only way to reach a defaulted borrower.” It also notes that the Department of Education requires “lenders to contact every `endorser, relative, reference, individual, and entity' identified in a delinquent borrower's loan file as part of their due diligence efforts.” Navient fails to note, however, that there is no requirement to make these contacts via robocall. Navient also makes clear in its comments that its purpose in calling relatives and references is to locate the debtor, not to collect the debt. Because the language of the Budget Act authorizes the Commission to limit calls “solely to collect a debt,” the rules permit covered calls only to persons who are responsible for repaying the debt.

    15. Numbers that May be Called. The Commission's interpretation of the phrase “solely to collect a debt” permits no covered calls unless the call is made to the debtor or person responsible for paying the debt at one of three categories of wireless telephone numbers. First, calls may be made to the wireless telephone number the debtor provided at the time the debt was incurred, such as on the loan application. Second, covered calls may be made to a wireless phone number subsequently provided by the debtor to the owner of the debt or the owner's contractor. Because the debtor has provided the phone numbers in these first two categories, the caller risks liability for the call after the first call to the number, if the number has been reassigned from the debtor to a third party. Third, covered calls are permitted to a wireless telephone number the owner of the debt or its contractor has obtained from an independent source, provided that the number actually is the debtor's telephone number. The Commission's decision to permit calls to these three categories of numbers is consistent with its interpretation of the phrase “solely to collect a debt,” and continues to satisfy the TCPA's consumer protection goals to the extent possible. As the connection between the phone numbers called and the debtor becomes more attenuated, so, too, does the likelihood of reaching the debtor. Beyond these three categories of numbers, persons reached will not likely be the debtor, so calls will not likely result in the collection of a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States.

    16. The Commission notes that the rules it is adopting, which permit calls only if they are to these three categories of numbers, are broader than the proposal in the 2016 NPRM. The Commission has included calls to numbers subsequently provided by the debtor to the owner of the debt or the owner's contractor, and to numbers the owner of the debt or its contractor has obtained from an independent source, provided that any such number actually is the debtor's number. These additional categories of numbers should prevent uninvolved consumers from receiving robocalls about debts they do not owe, while mitigating concerns that the phone number provided on the loan application no longer belongs to the debtor when the debt enters repayment.

    17. This limitation the Commission is placing on the number of covered calls, which limits covered calls only to these three categories of numbers, is a determination that robocalls to wrong numbers are not covered by the exception created in the Budget Act amendments. Calls to reassigned wireless numbers may not be made pursuant to the exception either. Wrong numbers, as the Commission used the term in the 2015 Declaratory Ruling and Order, published at 80 FR 61129, Oct. 9, 2015, are “numbers that are misdialed or entered incorrectly into a dialing system, or that for any other reason result in the caller making a call to a number where the called party is different from the party the caller intended to reach or the party who gave consent to be called.” The Commission determines that covered calls to reassigned wireless numbers, however, are subject to the one-call window the Commission clarified in the 2015 Declaratory Ruling and Order. For purposes of this exception, the reassigned wireless number provision would come into play when the caller makes a call to the wireless number provided by the debtor but the number was subsequently reassigned. In this circumstance, the caller would be entitled to the one-call window the Commission previously clarified if the caller did not know of the reassignment.

    18. Numerous parties in the record urge the Commission to apply the same wrong number and reassigned number standards set forth in the 2015 Declaratory Ruling and Order to these covered calls. Others ask the Commission to abandon or alter the wrong-number and reassigned-number standard so that covered calls are treated differently from other robocalls, but do not set forth a persuasive argument for why a covered call is different from a typical robocall subject to the one-call window. Several commenters argue for a “reasonable belief” or “actual knowledge” standard. The Commission, however, rejected those standards in the 2015 Declaratory Ruling and Order. And while ABA/CBA argues that separate regulations “mandate[] that calls be made to distressed borrowers at their last known phone number of record,” it does not indicate that the regulations require that those calls be made using an autodialer, artificial voice, or prerecorded voice. Consequently, ABA/CBA could comply with these separate regulatory requirements by manually dialing the last known phone number of record.

    19. Who May Make the Calls? The Commission next considers who may make the covered calls at issue. The Commission finds that a call is made “solely to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States” only if it is made by the owner of such a debt or its contractor. The record supports this interpretation. A number of commenters urge the Commission to determine that covered calls may be made by “creditors and those calling directly on their behalf,” or “creditors and those calling on their behalf, including their agents.” Two commenters ask the Commission to broaden the universe of those who may make covered calls, asking that “subcontractors [] be permitted to call, even if the subcontractor is not an agent.” The Commission declines to adopt rules that are as broad as “subcontractor,” but limits permitted callers to the owner of the debt or its contractor. As the Commission has noted above, consumers consistently complain to the Commission, the FTC, and CFPB about abusive and persistent debt-collection robocalls. In creating the rules limiting the number of covered calls, the Commission seeks to balance the goals of increasing the likelihood that debts owed to or guaranteed by the United States will be paid by the debtor and of protecting consumers. These rules properly balance these goals by recognizing the practicality that owners of debts might use the services of contractors to make covered calls in a manner that reduces the potential for abuse or causing debtors undue hardship.

    20. What Constitutes a “Call Made”? “Call,” for this exception, is consistent with the Commission's previous interpretation of “call” for TCPA purposes. A call is any initiated call. The call need not be completed, and need not result in a conversation or voicemail. While many commenters support this interpretation of “call,” others argue that the definition for purposes of the exception created by the Budget Act should be “connected calls” or “actual contacts.” The Commission finds no statutory basis to deviate from its existing interpretation of “call” and “made,” and finds persuasive one commenter's argument that “[e]very time the phone rings can cause anxiety. Whether or not the collector leaves a message on voice mail does not assuage this harassment.” Consistent with the text of the TCPA and the Commission's previous clarifications, covered calls may be an autodialed call, a prerecorded- or artificial-voice call, or a text message sent using an autodialer.

    21. Content of the covered calls. The 2016 NPRM asked how to ensure that covered calls do not include extraneous material that consumers do not want, such as marketing content. The Commission agrees with the many commenters who argue that content that includes marketing, advertising, or selling products or services, and other irrelevant content is not solely for the purpose of collecting a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States. The Commission has previously found that calls solely for the purpose of debt collection do not constitute telemarketing. Content in these calls that is telemarketing, therefore, transforms the call from one solely for the purpose of debt collection into a telemarketing call.

    Limits on Number and Duration of Federal Debt Collection Calls

    22. Need for restrictions. In considering the need for restrictions on calls to collect debts owed to or guaranteed by the United States, the Commission notes the volume of consumer complaints, as set forth above. These factors, along with Congress' explicit grant of authority to the Commission to “restrict or limit the number and duration of calls made to a telephone number assigned to a cellular telephone service to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States,” lead the Commission to adopt certain restrictions.

    23. Scope. Section 301(a)(2) of the Budget Act, which enacts a new statutory provision at 47 U.S.C. 227(b)(2)(H), authorizes the Commission to “restrict or limit the number and duration of calls made to a cellular telephone number to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States.” The scope of this authority is broader than the scope of the exception from the prior-express-consent requirement, because—unlike the exception—it is not limited to calls made “solely” to collect a covered debt. Thus, the rules the Commission promulgates under this authority apply to any autodialed, prerecorded-voice, and artificial-voice calls that reasonably relate to the collection of a covered debt and therefore apply even if the calls are not “calls made solely to collect a debt” under section 227(b)(1) of the Communications Act (the Act): e.g., as noted above, if the calls also contain other content (such as advertising) or precede the specified time period for calls excepted from the consent requirement. Moreover, these number and duration rules apply to calls by the federal government (to the extent it is the owner or guarantor of the debt) and its contractors, as explained in the Jurisdiction section below.

    24. The nature of restrictions, generally. The Commission determines, based on consumer complaints and on support from the record, that restrictions on the number and duration of federal debt collection calls are appropriate and necessary. In reaching this conclusion, the Commission bears in mind one reasonable interpretation of Congress' action in enacting the amendments: To make it easier for owners of debts owed to or guaranteed by the United States, as well as their contractors, to make calls to collect the debts. The Commission also bears in mind the TCPA's overarching goal to protect the privacy interests of consumers and Congress' express grant of authority to the Commission to place certain restrictions on federal debt collection calls. In seeking to balance these two interests, the Commission limits the number of federal debt collection calls to three in thirty days, with exceptions as noted below; limits the length of calls using an artificial voice or prerecorded voice, and autodialed text messages; and limits the times of day when federal debt collection calls may be made to wireless numbers. As explained more fully below, these limits apply in the aggregate to all calls from a caller to a debtor, regardless of the number of debts of each type the servicer or collector holds for the debtor. This cap of three calls per thirty days is cumulative for debt servicing calls and debt collection calls. Finally, the Commission limits the number of calls in light of a debtor's right to stop federal debt collection calls and to be notified of this right.

    25. Number of calls. In the 2016 NPRM, the Commission proposed to limit the number of federal debt collection calls to three per month, per delinquency, only after delinquency. Several commenters support this number. One commenter reminds the Commission, “it is important to keep in mind that the calls made pursuant to this regulation are without consent, and are likely to comprise only a portion of the many other calls and contacts that debt collectors have with the debtors from whom they are collecting.” Other commenters, however, argue for higher limits, stating that “it takes significantly more than three contact attempts to reach the borrower and additional contacts to effectively resolve a borrower's delinquency or default.” One commenter asserts that it needs 50 calls over several months to reach the right person and have a conversation. Another states that it takes 14.3 attempts to contact a consumer. A third commenter states that it needs approximately 50 follow-up calls, but that those calls are consented-to. Two commenters assert that approximately ten call attempts per month is an appropriate rate at which to contact debtors. A mortgage servicer states: “By making up to five calls in the two weeks prior to a client becoming 60 days delinquent, we saw approximately 50% more clients become current on the loan when compared to those who weren't called.”

    26. As these comments demonstrate, there is no consensus in the record. The Department of Education states that it “does not believe that allowing loan servicers and [private collection agencies] to make three [federal debt collection calls] per month would measurably increase the likelihood that they would reach a borrower,” but that “a higher limit will reasonably allow” them to do so. Consumer groups generally argue that three calls is the appropriate number for calls pursuant to the Budget Act amendments. As commenter Navient notes, however, these commenters often “fail to explain why three calls is an appropriate limit.” Additionally, callers filing comments cite statistics and call patterns documenting their perceived need for more calls—but even callers vary widely when advocating for a number on federal debt collection calls. Congress gave the Commission express authority to limit the number and duration of wireless federal debt collection calls, and the record documents the benefits to consumers of some number of covered calls. The Commission, therefore, must engage in an exercise in line drawing as it balances the competing interests to determine an appropriate limit on the number of federal debt collection calls.

    27. The Commission determines, subject to the exception below, that a limit of three federal debt collection calls in a thirty-day period is appropriate. As stated above, a significant number of commenters support this numeric restriction. Furthermore, the overwhelming majority of individual commenters support the Commission imposing a low limit on the number of calls allowed pursuant to the Budget Act amendments. Commenters asking for a higher limit have failed to offer a compelling justification for any of the various limits they support. At the same time, the Commission agrees with consumer groups that have noted that callers may make as many calls as they like—they simply need to obtain the consent of the debtor or contact consumers without making a robocall.

    28. The Commission, therefore, concludes that the appropriate limit for the number of federal debt collection calls is three calls within thirty days while the delinquency remains or following a specific, time-sensitive event, with such calls also permitted in the 30 days before such an event (but not before delinquency). The Commission recognizes, however, that some federal agencies, based on their expertise administering their respective statutes and programs, may desire additional calls. Balancing these needs with the TCPA's goal of protecting consumers from unwanted calls, the Commission notes that federal agencies may request a waiver seeking a different limit on the number of autodialed, prerecorded-voice, and artificial-voice calls that may be made without consent of the called party. The Commission delegates to the Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau the authority to address any such waivers.

    29. The Commission is not persuaded by callers who argue that more calls are needed or that other regulatory or contractual obligations might impose higher limits on the total number of calls. The Commission is not limiting the total number of calls that may be made; instead, the Commission is exercising its statutory authority and discretion to establish a limit on the number of autodialed, prerecorded-voice, and artificial-voice calls that can be made without the consent of the called party for the limited purpose at issue here. Thus, the Commission sets this limit with the knowledge that callers may make additional autodialed, artificial-voice, and prerecorded-voice calls if they obtain the prior express consent of the called party or if they dial manually. Robocallers are free, of course, to obtain prior express consent for additional calls and the Commission presumes that consumers who find the calls beneficial will provide it.

    30. Consumer ability to stop federal debt collection calls. The Commission has determined that an ability to stop unwanted calls is critical to the TCPA's goal of consumer protection. That right is likely more important here, where consumers need not consent to the calls in advance in order for a caller to make federal debt collection calls. As one commenter notes, “[r]equiring calls to stop after the consumer so requests constitutes a limit on the number of calls that can be made, and Congress explicitly authorized the Commission to limit the number of calls.” The Commission agrees. The Commission has stated that one reasonable interpretation of the statute is that Congress intended to make it easier for consumers to obtain useful information about debt repayment, which may be conveyed in these calls. When a debtor has rejected that presumption and declared that he or she no longer wishes to receive these calls, there is no longer any reason for the calls to continue. The Commission determines, per its authority to limit the number of federal debt collection calls, that consumers have a right to stop the covered autodialed, artificial-voice, and prerecorded-voice servicing and collection calls to wireless numbers at any point the consumer wishes. The debtor may make this request to the caller. Several commenters support this decision and the Commission's ability to make it. If Congress intended these amendments to make it easier for consumers to obtain useful information about debt repayment, then consumers may request that the calls stop if they do not find the calls or the information they contain useful. The Commission's rules, therefore, require that zero federal debt collection calls are permitted once a debtor asks the owner of the debt or its contractor to cease federal debt collection calls. This requirement that callers immediately honor a request to stop calls applies even where the caller has previously obtained prior express consent to make federal debt collection calls.

    31. The Commission also understands that debts may be transferred from one servicer or collector to another. This stop-calling request is specific to the debt and the consumer, and transfers with the debt; once the consumer has asked that the number of federal debt collection calls be reduced to zero, only the consumer can alter that number restriction. Consequently, a stop-calling requests applies to a subsequent collector or servicer of the same debt. In reaching this determination, the Commission rejects a commenter's proposal that a stop-calling request be limited to a period of time such as a month, but be renewable. Because the stop-calling request for federal debt collection calls applies for the life of the debt, servicers and collectors must ensure that information regarding the request conveys with the other relevant information regarding the debt when it is sold or transferred between servicers or collectors. The requirement that the stop-call request conveys from one servicer or collector to the next implicates the Paperwork Reduction Act, as indicated in the Commission's rules, and in the Final Regulatory Flexibility Act.

    32. Granting consumers a right to request calls stop at any point is only useful if consumers know of this right. The Commission agrees with the FTC staff that “[a]n opt-out right [] is only effective if it is well-known” rather than with the commenters who argue that a consumer should be notified of the right only once and in writing, or that notifying consumers of the right within every phone call will “cause a consumer to attach undue significance to such a right.” The Commission, therefore, requires callers to inform debtors of their right to make such a request. The disclosure of rights must inform the debtor that he or she has a right to request that no further autodialed, artificial-voice, or prerecorded-voice calls be made to the debtor for the life of the debt, and that such request may be made by any reasonable method. Disclosures must be made in a manner that gives debtors an effective opportunity to stop future calls. Callers must disclose this consumer right within every completed autodialed call with a live caller, whether the caller speaks with the debtor or leaves a voicemail message. Calls using a prerecorded or artificial voice must disclose the right within each message. Covered text messages must disclose the right within each text message or in a separate text message that contains only the disclosure and is sent immediately preceding the first covered text message. If the disclosure is in a separate text message, that message does not count toward the numeric limits the Commission imposes in document FCC 16-99.

    33. The Commission has previously determined that consumers may opt out of calls for which prior consent is required, and that they may do so using any reasonable method, including orally or in response to a text message. Here, where the federal debt collection calls do not require consent, but where consumers may request at any time that calls stop, consumers may also make a stop-calling request using any reasonable method, including orally or in response to a text message. The Commission reaches this conclusion regarding the methods by which a consumer may make a stop-calling request after considering consumer confusion, standard calling practices, and recordkeeping procedures. The Commission anticipates that confusion will be minimized and calling practices will be streamlined if stop-calling methods and opt-out procedures are consistent. For similar reasons, the Commission determines that federal debt collection calls made using a prerecorded or artificial voice must include an automated, interactive voice- and/or key press-activated opt-out mechanism so that debtors who receive these calls may make a stop-calling request during the call by pressing a single key. When a federal debt collection call using an artificial voice or prerecorded voice leaves a voicemail message, that message must also provide a toll-free number that the debtor may call at a later time to connect directly to the automated, interactive voice and/or key press-activated mechanism and automatically record the stop-calling request. Text message disclosures must include brief explanatory instructions for sending a stop-call request by reply text message and provide a toll-free number that enables the debtor to call back later to make a stop-call request. The requirement that the artificial- and prerecorded-voice calls, as well as text messages, include opt-out instructions and features implicates the Paperwork Reduction Act, as indicated in the Commission's rules, and in the Final Regulatory Flexibility Act.

    34. When may federal debt collection calls be made? In order for a federal debt collection call to produce the intended effect of “collect[ing] a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States,” it must occur close in time to a key event in the life of the debt. As set forth above, calls “solely to collect a debt” may be collection calls or servicing calls because both increase the likelihood of a debt being collected. The Commission has interpreted the statutory phrase “solely to collect a debt” to limit debt collection calls to a period when a debt is delinquent, and to limit debt servicing calls to following a specific, time-sensitive event and in the 30 days before such an event. The Commission here uses the authority Congress granted it to limit the number and duration of calls “to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States.” The rules the Commission enacts today state that zero calls are permitted under the Budget Act amendments unless they occur: (1) During the period of delinquency for debt collection calls; and (2) following an enumerated, specific, time-sensitive event and in the 30 days before such an event for debt servicing calls.

    35. Content of the calls. As stated above, the Commission's interpretation of the statutory phrase “solely to collect a debt” excludes calls that contain marketing, advertising, or selling products or services. The Commission here uses the authority Congress granted it to limit the number and duration of calls “to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States.” The rules the Commission enacts today state that zero calls are permitted under the Budget Act amendments if the autodialed, prerecorded-voice, or artificial-voice call contains any marketing, advertising, or selling of products or services. Commenters support this determination. The Commission's determination regarding calls that contain marketing, advertising, or sales also supports the Commission's interpretation of Congress' intent that the calls provide consumers with useful information about repaying their debt, and it is a step in preventing the very real problem that consumers will be subject to fraudulent calls and programs.

    36. Calls only to the debtor. The Commission also here enacts rules stating that zero calls are permitted under the Budget Act amendments unless the calls are to the debtor or the person responsible for paying the debt, and the call is made to that person at one of the three categories of numbers specified in document FCC 16-99. The Commission's interpretation of the statutory phrase “solely to collect” explains its reasoning for establishing these limits on who may be called and the numbers at which these persons may be called. The Commission finds that the reasoning applies here as well, where Congress has authorized it to limit the number of calls made “to collect a debt.” Calls to persons other than the debtor or other entities responsible for paying the debt are not directly tied to collecting a debt. In balancing the inconvenience to uninvolved persons against the interests of callers, the Commission determines it is not appropriate to extend federal debt collection calls beyond the debtor and others responsible for paying the debt. Likewise, calls to numbers other than the three categories of telephone numbers the Commission specified above are unlikely to reach the person responsible for repaying the debt, and so are unlikely to result in collection of the debt. The Commission, therefore, limits to zero calls made to persons or telephone numbers other than these.

    37. Call limits are per caller. Commenters also ask the Commission to “clarify whether the [limited number of federal debt collection calls] is per debtor (e.g., inclusive of all telephone numbers used by the debtor)” per delinquency, or per servicer or collector. One consumer advocate states: “[B]ecause many consumers have multiple loans—often eight to ten student loans for each borrower—we recommend that the number of calls or texts permitted to be made without consent should be limited to three calls per servicer or collector. Without this limitation, consumers who have eight to ten outstanding loans, as many do, could be receiving between twenty-four and thirty robocalls per month to their cell phones.” Because the Commission has set the federal debt collection call limit at three calls per thirty days, that number could rise to twenty-four to thirty robocalls per month if the Commission were to determine that the call limit applied per loan. In light of the record, and to prevent an excessive number of calls to individual debtors, the Commission determines that the call limit on federal debt collection calls to wireless numbers applies for each servicer or collector. If the servicer or collector has contracts with the United States for more than one type of debt—for example to collect or service student loans and Department of Agriculture loans—the servicer may utilize a three-call in thirty day limit for each type of loan the servicer or collector manages for the debtor.

    38. Length of federal debt collection calls. In the 2016 NPRM, the Commission sought comment on the maximum duration of a voice call, and whether it should adopt different duration limits for prerecorded- or artificial-voice calls than for autodialed calls with a live caller. Commenters generally support the idea of a maximum length for artificial-voice and prerecorded-voice calls, but not a maximum length for autodialed calls with a live caller because this could impinge on a potentially lengthy conversation between a servicer and a debtor. Commenters who support a maximum length for artificial- and prerecorded-voice calls suggest caps of 30 or 60 seconds. Some commenters suggest that the time limit include time for any required disclosures, while others ask that required disclosures be outside of any time cap the Commission sets. In light of the record, the Commission determines that artificial-voice and prerecorded-voice calls may not exceed 60 seconds, exclusive of any required disclosures. The Commission does not place any cap on the duration of live-caller, autodialed calls made pursuant to the Budget Act exception.

    39. The Commission also asked in the 2016 NPRM whether it should impose a limit on the length of text messages, and what that limit should be. Commenters note that senders of text messages generally keep the messages short because “[a] long text message would get split up into multiple texts and could confuse the borrower.” Other commenters ask that any cap on the length of a text message account for required disclosures. Text messages are generally limited to 160 characters. As stated above, any required disclosures may be included within this 160-character limit for a single text message or may be sent as a separate text message that does not count toward the numeric limits the Commission imposes herein.

    40. Time of day restrictions. The Commission imposes an additional restriction on the number of federal debt collection calls or texts allowed, and determines that no federal debt collection calls or texts are permitted outside the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. (local time at the called party's location), which is identical to the rule for telemarketing calls. Congress stated that federal debt collection calls are intended “to collect a debt,” and during these times consumers are likely available to answer calls and receptive to receiving information from callers. The record supports the Commission's determination that consumers are generally comfortable with receiving calls during these times. Furthermore, FTC staff notes that the FDCPA and the Telemarketing Sales Rule “similarly limit debt collection and telemarketing calls to this same timeframe.” Adding a new category of calls to this generally accepted timeframe will cause less inconvenience and confusion to consumers than if the Commission were to impose a different schedule or no schedule for these calls. Likewise, call centers that contract with businesses to make calls on their behalf are familiar with these time-of-day restrictions; this restriction should not impose a burden on callers or their contractors making federal debt collection calls.

    41. Multiple sets of regulations. The Commission acknowledges that other statutes and regulations impact debt collection calls, yet it recognizes that Congress assigned to the Commission responsibility for crafting rules for autodialed, artificial-voice, and prerecorded-voice debt collection calls where the debt is owed to or guaranteed by the United States. Because Congress specifically gave the Commission certain authority over these federal debt collection calls, the Commission assumes that callers will follow the most restrictive rules for the call being made. Which rules apply will vary based on a number of factors, such as whether the caller is a debt collector or a debt servicer, the nature of the debt, and the length of delinquency. Where multiple rules apply to the same call and one of the rules is enacted by the Commission to implement the TCPA, a caller must comply with the most restrictive requirements regarding factors such as frequency, time of day, and so on. Section 301 of the Budget Act affects the TCPA and its implementing regulations but does not affect other laws, including specifically those for which the CFPB or the FTC have responsibility.

    Other Implementation Issues

    42. Covered Calls to Residential Lines. The Commission notes that under the current rules, artificial- or prerecorded-voice calls to residential lines that are made for the purpose of collecting a debt are currently not subject to the prior express consent requirement. Although the TCPA allows for broad coverage of the prior express consent requirement to all non-emergency artificial- and prerecorded-voice calls to residential lines, the Commission has exercised its statutory exemption authority so as to apply the consent requirement only to calls that include or introduce an advertisement or constitute telemarketing. The Commission has also found that debt collection calls do not constitute telemarketing.

    43. Congress, in authorizing the Commission to enact rules implementing the Budget Act's amendments, stated that the Commission could “restrict or limit the number and duration of calls made to a telephone number assigned to a cellular telephone service.” Congress, by omission, did not authorize the Commission to enact rules to limit the number and duration of calls made to a telephone number assigned to a residential telephone line. Commenters support this understanding of the Budget Act amendment with regard to calls to numbers assigned to residential lines, stating: “Congress did not grant the Commission the authority to restrict or limit” these calls. Consequently, the Commission's current rules regarding non-telemarketing autodialed, prerecorded-voice, and artificial-voice calls to residential numbers are not altered by the Budget Act amendments. The Commission is not imposing restrictions on these calls. Callers may, however, be subject to restrictions under other applicable statutes and regulations, such as the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.

    44. Restrictions on Calls to Cellular Telephone Service. Congress authorized the Commission to “restrict or limit the number and duration of calls made to a telephone number assigned to a cellular telephone service to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States.” Yet, the amendment to the TCPA, authorizing calls made to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States, is broader, applying to “any telephone number assigned to a paging service, cellular telephone service, specialized mobile radio service, or other radio common carrier service, or any service for which the called party is charged for the call.” Considering the identical language in the prior delegation of authority in section 227(b)(2)(C) of the Act, the Commission concludes that Congress delegated the Commission authority to limit the number and duration of all calls made pursuant to the debt collection exception in section 227(b)(1)(A)(iii) of the Act.

    45. Congress, in granting the Commission authority to limit the number and duration of calls, used identical language to the language it used in the separate delegation of authority in section 227(b)(2)(C) of the Act. The identical language in these two delegations of authority indicates that Congress intended the two provisions to apply to the same services.

    46. The Commission has interpreted section 227(b)(2)(C) of the Act to apply to all services mentioned in section 227(b)(1)(A)(iii) of the Act. In so doing, it has interpreted “cellular telephone service” by asking whether services are functionally equivalent from the consumer perspective rather than on technical or regulatory differences, such as which spectrum block is used to provide the service. This avoids, for example, consumers receiving wireless voice service from being treated differently depending on which spectrum block their carriers use and callers having to determine which spectrum block is used for a particular consumer's service in order to know which requirements apply.

    47. Applying the canon of statutory construction that Congress knows the law, including relevant agency interpretations, at the time it adopts a statute, the Commission presumes that Congress knew of the Commission's interpretation of this key language. Congress used the same language in the recent delegation of authority without taking any action to alter the Commission's interpretation of identical language elsewhere in the same statute. The Commission therefore concludes that the authority delegated to it in the new section 227(b)(2)(H) of the Act added by the Budget Act applies to all services to which amended section 227(b)(1)(A)(iii) of the Act applies.

    48. Application of Other TCPA Restrictions to Covered Calls. The Commission believes the most reasonable interpretation of the Budget Act amendments is that they except covered calls from the requirement to obtain the consent of the called party, and that calls must in every other respect comply with the TCPA unless compliance with a requirement of the TCPA is prohibited by a separate regulation pertaining to debt collection calls generally. The Budget Act amendments apply to the consent requirement of section (b)(1) of the Act, but other sections of the TCPA are left unaffected. For example, the identification requirements of § 64.1200(b)(1) through (2) of the Commission's rules apply to both excepted calls and other calls made using an autodialer, a prerecorded voice, and an artificial voice. The exception Congress created in the Budget Act amendments is not an exception to compliance with the TCPA as a whole, but only with the requirement to obtain the consent of the called party to make the call. The Commission will resolve conflicts on a case-by-case basis.

    49. Other Issues. Commenters in the record raise other arguments for the Commission's consideration in enacting rules for the Budget Act amendments. For example, one commenter asks the Commission to state that “no debt collection calls [may be made to] people receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits on the basis of old age or disability, and that Treasury not pass along information on debts owed by SSI recipients to debt collectors.” Another commenter asks the Commission to develop “a separate set of rules to assist federal student loan borrowers.” A separate commenter asks the Commission to create a certification system that authorizes callers to use autodialers for purposes of making covered calls and only renews the certification if the caller's yearly performance meets standards established by the Commission and the Department of Education. The Commission declines to address these and other ancillary issues and arguments raised in the record as they are outside the scope of this proceeding. Moreover, these issues are not fully developed in the record and the Commission would need more facts to meaningfully and cogently address these issues.

    Severability

    50. All of the rules that are adopted in document FCC 16-99 are designed to ensure a caller's ability to make calls pursuant to the Budget Act amendments and a debtor's ability to control the calls he or she receives. Each of the determinations the Commission undertakes in document FCC 16-99 serve a particular function toward this goal. Therefore, it is the Commission's intent that each of the rules and regulations adopted herein shall be severable. The Commission believes that debtors will benefit from the information they may receive from callers and will also benefit from the ability to ask that calls be stopped. If any of the rules or regulations, or portions thereof, are declared invalid or unenforceable for any reason, it is the Commission's intent that the remaining rules shall be in full force and effect.

    Effective Date

    51. As noted in the discussion above, two portions of the Commission's rules implicate the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA). These portions involve the rules for the recording of a debtor's request to stop receiving autodialed, artificial-voice, and prerecorded-voice calls to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States, and rules for the conveyance of that stop-call request from one servicer or collector to another. Because these portions of the rules implicate the PRA, they will not become effective until 60 days after the Commission publishes a Notice in the Federal Register indicating approval of the information collection by OMB.

    52. The remaining rules will not become effective until the rules requiring OMB approval become effective. While these remaining rules do not require OMB approval and could become effective immediately upon release of document FCC 16-99, the Commission determines that the consumer-protection rules regarding stop-call requests and conveyance of those requests are so integral to this regulatory scheme that the remaining rules should not become effective until the consumer-protection rules are in place. The rules that could become effective immediately permit a caller to make calls—they specify how many calls may be made, who may make the calls, when the calls can be made, and to which numbers the calls may be made, among other things. These rules give effect to one of the reasonable interpretations the Commission has identified for Congress' passage of the Budget amendments: to make it easier for owners of debts owed to or guaranteed by the United States and their contractors to make calls to collect debts. But the second reasonable interpretation—to make it easier for consumers to obtain useful information about debt repayment—carries with it a consumer's prerogative to determine that the debtor does not want the information conveyed in the calls and to ask that the calls stop. The rules that give effect to this interpretation of Congress' intent are delayed by PRA requirements and OMB approval. The Commission determines that the regulatory scheme it implements today must include both the ability for callers to make calls and the right of debtors to ask that calls stop—and that both portions of the regulatory scheme become effective simultaneously. To do otherwise would be to allow callers to make calls but to leave debtors with no consumer protections until OMB approval is complete. The Commission determines that both portions of the rules must become effective for the regulatory scheme to be effective.

    53. The notice of OMB's approval of the information collections, the announcement of the effective date for the rule changes adopted on August 2, 2016, and released on August 11, 2016, and the appropriate amendatory language, will be contained in a document published in the Federal Register at a later date.

    Language of Rule Changes To Implement Regulatory Scheme

    54. The amendments to §§ 64.1200(j)(3) and (j)(4) require OMB approval under the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) and will not go into effect until 60 days after we publish a notice in the Federal Register announcing OMB's approval and the effective date, and containing the formal amendatory language for the rules. The complete text of the rule changes may be found in the appendix to the Commission's decision, available on the agency Web site. The subsection (j)(3) and (j)(4) rule changes are summarized as follows:

    Required Disclosures. Prerecorded-voice, artificial-voice, or autodialed calls to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States must include a disclosure that the debtor has a right to request that no further calls of this type be made to the debtor for the life of the debt and that such requests may be made by any reasonable method. Disclosures must be made in a manner that gives debtors an effective opportunity to stop future calls. For voice telephone calls, the disclosure must be made within each telephone call. For autodialed text messages, the disclosure must be within each text message or in a separate text message that contains only the disclosure and that is sent immediately preceding the first text message permitted, but the text message containing the disclosure does not count toward the character limit contained elsewhere in the rules.

    Requests for no more calls. A debtor may request to the owner of the debt or its contractor that no further telephone calls be made to the debtor for the life of the debt by any reasonable method, including orally and by reply text message. No autodialed, prerecorded-voice, or artificial-voice federal debt collection calls are permitted after the stop-call request. Telephone calls using an artificial or prerecorded voice must include an automated, interactive voice- and/or key press-activated opt-out mechanism that enables the debtor to make a stop-calling request prior to terminating the call, including brief explanatory instructions on how to use such mechanism. When a debtor elects to make a stop-calling request using such mechanism, it must automatically record the request and immediately terminate the call. When a telephone call using an artificial or prerecorded voice leaves a message on an answering machine or a voice mail service, the message must also include a toll free number that the debtor may call later to connect directly to the automated, interactive voice- and/or key press-activated opt-out mechanism and automatically record the stop-calling request. Text messages containing the disclosure required elsewhere in the rules must include brief explanatory instructions for sending a stop-calling request by reply text message and provide a toll free number that enables the debtor to call back later to make a stop-calling request.

    55. The Commission determined that the amendments to §§ 64.1200(a)(1)(iii); (a)(3)(iv), (v), and (vi); (f)(17); (i), and (j)(1)-(2),(5)-(9), which do not require OMB approval, nonetheless will not go into effect until 60 days after we publish a notice of OMB approval of § 64.1200(j)(3) and (j)(4), the effective date for all the rule changes, and the amendatory language for the rules. The complete text of the rule changes may be found in the appendix to the Commission's decision, available on the agency Web site. These other rule changes are summarized as follows:

    No consent required for calls solely to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States. The prior express consent of the called party is not needed when: A call is made to a telephone number assigned to a cellular telephone service, among others; the call is made solely to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the federal government of the United States; and the call is made using an automatic telephone dialing system or an artificial or prerecorded voice. The prior express written consent of the called party is not needed when a call is made to a telephone number assigned to a residential line when the call is made pursuant to the collection of a debt owed to or guaranteed by the federal government of the United States and the call is made using an artificial or prerecorded voice.

    Debtor defined. Debtor is defined as the debtor; a co-signor or other person or entity legally obligated to pay the debt; and an executor, guardian, administrator, receiver, trustee, or similar legal representative of the debtor or of another person or entity legally obligated to pay the debt.

    When a call is made solely to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States. To be considered a call made solely to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States, the telephone call must exclusively concern a debt that, at the time of the call, is owed to or guaranteed by the federal government of the United States and must contain no marketing, advertising, or sales information. The call must also be made by the owner of the debt, or its contractor, to the debtor. The entire content of the call must be directly and reasonably related either to collecting payment of a delinquent amount in order to cure such delinquency or to resolving the debt either by obtaining payment of such delinquent amount or by entering into an alternative payment arrangement that will cure such delinquency or resolve the debt, during a time period when a delinquency exists, or providing information about changes to the amount or timing of payments following the end of, or in the 30 days before: a grace, deferment, or forbearance period; expiration of an alternative payment arrangement; or occurrence of a similar time-sensitive event or deadline affecting the amount or timing of payments due. The call must be made to the debtor at the wireless telephone number the debtor provided at the time the debt was incurred, or subsequently provided by the debtor to the owner of the debt or the owner's contractor, or a wireless telephone number obtained from an independent source, provided that the number actually is the debtor's telephone number.

    Number and duration limits on calls made to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States. Telephone calls made using an autodialer or a prerecorded or artificial voice to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States are limited to three calls to a debtor within a 30-day period but zero calls if a debtor requests no further calls. These limits apply whether the calls are made by the owner of the debt or by a contractor of the owner(s) of the debt. For purposes of determining the number of calls permitted, multiple debts owed by one debtor shall be considered one debt if the agent or contractor is servicing or collecting those debts on behalf of the same owner under the same contractual or agency relationship. The limit of zero calls if a debtor requests no further calls applies for the life of the debt; the limit of three calls in a 30-day period applies during each time period in which telephone calls may be made pursuant to paragraph (i)(2) of the rules.

    Length of federal debt collection calls. Artificial- and prerecorded-voice telephone calls may not exceed 60 seconds in length, excluding any required disclosures and stop-calling instructions. Text messages are limited to 160 characters in length.

    Other restrictions on calls made to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States. No telephone calls can be made before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m. local time at the debtor's location. No calls are permitted if the call contains marketing, advertising, or sales information. No calls are permitted except to the debtor at the wireless telephone number the debtor provided at the time the debt was incurred, a wireless telephone number subsequently provided by the debtor to the owner of the debt or the owner's contractor, or a wireless telephone number the owner of the debt or its contractor has obtained from an independent source, provided that the number actually is the debtor's telephone number. No calls are permitted except during a time period when a delinquency exists, or following, or in the 30 days before: The end of a grace, deferment, or forbearance period; expiration of an alternative payment arrangement; or occurrence of a similar time-sensitive event or deadline affecting the amount or timing of payments due.

    Who must comply with the restrictions. Notwithstanding anything to the contrary, the number and duration rules for calls to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States apply to all autodialed, artificial-voice, or prerecorded-voice calls made to a wireless number including, for example, calls by any governmental entity or its agent.

    Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis

    56. As required by the Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (RFA), as amended, an Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analyses (IRFA) was incorporated into the 2016 NRPM. The Commission sought written public comment on the proposals in the 2016 NRPM, including comment on the IRFA. The comments received are discussed below. This Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (FRFA) conforms to the RFA.

    Need for, and Objectives of, the Order

    57. Document FCC 16-99 promulgates rules to implement section 301 of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015, which amends the Telephone Consumer Protection Act by excepting from that Act's consent requirement robocalls to wireless numbers “made solely to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States” and authorizing the Commission to adopt rules to “restrict or limit the number and duration” of any calls to wireless numbers “to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States.” The Budget Act requires the Commission, in consultation with the Department of the Treasury, to “prescribe regulations to implement the amendments made” by section 301 of the Budget Act within nine months of enactment. In implementing these provisions, the Commission recognizes and seeks to balance the importance of collecting debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States and the consumer protections inherent in the TCPA. In adopting these rules today, the Commission fulfills the statutory requirement to prescribe rules to implement the amendments to the TCPA.

    58. Covered Calls. The Commission interprets “solely to collect a debt” and, therefore, calls made pursuant to the exception created by section 301 of the Budget Act, to be limited to 1) debts that are delinquent at the time the calls are made, and 2) debts for which there is an imminent, non-speculative risk of delinquency due to a specific, time-sensitive event that affects the amount or timing of payments due, such as a deadline to recertify eligibility for an alternative payment plan or the end of a deferment period. The Commission interprets “owed to or guaranteed by the United States” to include only debts that are owed to or guaranteed by the federal government at the time the call is made.

    59. The Commission determines that, because calls made pursuant to the exception must be made “solely to collect a debt,” the covered calls may only be made to the debtor or another person or entity legally responsible for paying the debt. The Commission further determines that covered calls may only be made to the wireless telephone number the debtor provided at the time the debt was incurred, such as on the loan application; to a wireless phone number subsequently provided by the debtor; or to a wireless number that the owner of the debt or its contractor has obtained from an independent source, provided that the number actually is the debtor's telephone number.

    60. The Commission determines that robocalls to wrong numbers are not covered by the exception created in the Budget Act amendments. Calls to reassigned wireless numbers may not be made pursuant to the amendment either, but they are subject to the 1-call window the Commission clarified in the 2015 Declaratory Ruling and Order.

    61. The Commission limits eligible callers to the owner of the debt or its contractor. The Commission determines that a “call,” for this exception, includes any initiated call, including a text message. The Commission determines that the excepted calls are limited in content to debt collection and servicing; they may not include any marketing, advertising, or selling products or services, or other irrelevant content.

    62. Limits on Number and Duration of Federal Debt Collection Calls. The Commission limits the number of federal debt collection calls to three calls within a thirty-day period while the delinquency remains or following a specific, time-sensitive event, and in the 30 days before such an event. The Commission determines that consumers have a right to stop autodialed, artificial-voice, and prerecorded-voice servicing and collection calls to wireless numbers at any point the consumer wishes. Callers must inform debtors of their right to make such a request. The Commission limits federal debt collection calls so that zero calls are permitted unless they occur: (1) During the period of delinquency for debt collection calls; and (2) following an enumerated, specific, time-sensitive event for debt servicing calls, and in the 30 days before such an event.

    63. The Commission determines that artificial-voice and prerecorded-voice calls may not exceed 60 seconds, excluding any required disclosures. The Commission does not place any cap on the duration of live-caller, autodialed calls. The Commission limits text messages to 160 characters. Any required disclosures may be included within these 160 characters or may be sent as a separate text message that does not count toward the numeric limits. The Commission determines that no federal debt collection calls or texts are permitted outside the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. (local time at the called party's location). The Commission determines that if multiple rules apply to the same call and one of the rules is enacted by the Commission to implement the TCPA, a caller must comply with the most restrictive requirements regarding factors such as frequency, time of day, and so on.

    64. Other Implementation Issues. The Commission interprets section 227(b)(2)(C) of the Act to apply to all services mentioned in section 227(b)(1)(A)(iii) of the Act, which excludes residential lines.

    Summary of Significant Issues Raised by Public Comments in Response to the IRFA

    65. In document FCC 16-99, the Commission solicited comments on how to minimize the economic impact of the proposals on small businesses. The Commission received three comments directly addressing the IRFA. Two of the comments addressed the area of duplicate, overlapping, or conflicting rules, and one addressed coordination with the ongoing Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) rulemaking. In addition, the Commission received six consumer comments that were against robocalls where the filer mentioned being the owner of a small business. None of the comments pointed out any areas where small businesses would incur a particular hardship in complying with the rules.

    66. Duplicate, Overlapping, or Conflicting Rules. Both CMC and NSC claim that the Commission failed to identify rules that “duplicate, overlap or conflict with the proposed rule” as required by the Regulatory Flexibility Act. The Commission acknowledges that other statutes and regulations impact debt collection calls. The TCPA regulates autodialed, prerecorded-voice, and artificial-voice calls. The rules the Commission adopted are concerned only with regulating that subset of autodialed, artificial-voice, and prerecorded-voice calls that are made to wireless numbers and to collect a debt that is owed to or guaranteed by the United States. The TCPA amendments and these implementing rules change only the specific conditions under which a caller can use an autodialer, prerecorded voice, and artificial voice to make calls to a wireless number without the prior express consent of the called party and the limitations that apply to autodialed, prerecorded-voice, or artificial-voice calls to a wireless number made to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States.

    67. CMC suggests that the rules conflict with “longstanding federal and state foreclosure prevention efforts and policies”; “several federal requirements to call mortgage borrowers by telephone to try to prevent foreclosures”; “any new FCC rule permitting consumers to block calls”; “[t]he FDCPA prohibit[ion of] unfair practices by debt collectors in attempting to collect a debt”; and “[t]he Dodd-Frank Act prohibit[ion of] unfair, deceptive, or abusive acts or practices by covered persons or service providers, including consumer mortgage servicers.” However, none of the rules cited by CMC require that calls to wireless numbers be autodialed, artificial-voice, or prerecorded-voice calls. The TCPA, with or without the amendments, does not regulate whether or when a debt collector can make a debt collection call, nor does it in any way prohibit a mortgage servicer from making a call in compliance with foreclosure requirements. Debt collectors and mortgage servicers continue to be free to make calls in compliance with non-TCPA law. The rules the Commission adopted apply only to autodialed, prerecorded-voice, and artificial-voice calls. Therefore the rules cited by CMC do not “duplicate, overlap or conflict with” the proposed rule.

    68. Coordination with the CFPB. ACA notes that the CFPB “will convene one or more panels under the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act to assess the potential impact of its debt collection proposals under consideration on affected small business, including by obtaining feedback from small entity representatives.” ACA suggests that the Commission wait for the results of the CFPB's analysis, particularly since “the substantial majority of collection agencies are `small' under the Small Business Administration's size standard.” The Commission declines to do so for two reasons. First, the deadline of August 2nd imposed by Congress prohibits the delay of this rulemaking. Second, the CFPB is analyzing overall debt collection rules and policies, a much wider scope than the narrow area covered by these rules, which are limited to regulating autodialed, artificial-voice, and prerecorded-voice calls to wireless numbers to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States. It is unlikely that the CFPB panels will provide more information than that which has already been received through the notice and comment process that began with the 2016 NPRM.

    69. Cost Analysis. CMC recommends that the Commission “consider the costs of mortgage delinquencies and foreclosures and mortgage `rescue' scams that telephone calls could have prevented or mitigated” as part of the cost analysis. The Commission has considered comments asserting the potential benefits to debtors of receiving the autodialed, pre-recorded voice, and artificial-voice calls at issue in developing the rules, including in balancing the importance of collecting debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States and the consumer protections inherent in the TCPA. Such costs as CMC mentions would not be incurred by regulated entities and, in this context, would be both hypothetical and highly speculative. As a result, the Commission does not attempt to quantify the costs raised by CMC in the Description of Projected Reporting, Recordkeeping, and Other Compliance Requirements for Small Entities section below.

    Response to Comments by the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration

    70. Pursuant to the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010, which amended the RFA, the Commission is required to respond to any comments filed by the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration (SBA), and to provide a detailed statement of any change made to the proposed rules as a result of those comments. The Chief Counsel did not file any comments in response to the proposed rules in this proceeding.

    Description and Estimate of the Number of Small Entities To Which Rules Will Apply

    71. The RFA directs agencies to provide a description of, and where feasible, an estimate of the number of small entities that may be affected by the rules adopted herein. The RFA generally defines the term “small entity” as having the same meaning as the terms “small business,” “small organization,” and “small governmental jurisdiction.” In addition, the term “small business” has the same meaning as the term “small-business concern” under the Small Business Act. A “small-business concern” is one which: (1) Is independently owned and operated; (2) is not dominant in its field of operation; and (3) satisfies any additional criteria established by the SBA.

    72. The Commission's rules restricting autodialed, artificial-voice, and prerecorded-voice calls to wireless numbers apply to all entities that make such calls or texts to wireless telephone numbers to collect debts owed to or guaranteed by the United States. Thus, the rules set forth in this proceeding are likely to have an impact on a substantial number of small entities in several categories.

    73. Collection Agencies. This industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in collecting payments for claims and remitting payments collected to their clients. The SBA has determined that Collection Agencies with $15 million or less in annual receipts qualify as small businesses. Census data for 2012 indicate that 3,361 firms in this category operated throughout that year. Of those, 3,166 firms operated with annual receipts of less than $10 million. The Commission concludes that a substantial majority of businesses in this category are small under the SBA standard.

    74. Telemarketing Bureaus and Other Contact Centers. This U.S. industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in operating call centers that initiate or receive communications for others—via telephone, facsimile, email, or other communication modes—for purposes such as (1) promoting clients products or services, (2) taking orders for clients, (3) soliciting contributions for a client, and (4) providing information or assistance regarding a client's products or services. These establishments do not own the product or provide the services they are representing on behalf of clients. The SBA has determined that Telemarketing Bureaus and other Contact Centers with $15 million or less in annual receipts qualify as small businesses. U.S. Census data for 2012 indicate that 2,251 firms in this category operated throughout that year. Of those, 2,014 operated with annual receipts of less than $10 million. The Commission concludes that a substantial majority of businesses in this category are small under the SBA standard.

    75. Commercial Banks and Savings Institutions. Commercial banks are establishments primarily engaged in accepting demand and other deposits and making commercial, industrial, and consumer loans. Commercial banks and branches of foreign banks are included in this industry. Savings institutions are establishments primarily engaged in accepting time deposits, making mortgage and real estate loans, and investing in high-grade securities. Savings and loan associations and savings banks are included in this industry. The SBA has determined that Commercial Banks and Savings Institutions with $500 million or less in assets qualify as small businesses. December 2013 Call Report data compiled by SNL Financial indicate that 6,877 firms in this category operated throughout that year. Of those, 5,533 qualify as small entities. Based on this data, the Commission concludes that a substantial number of businesses in this category are small under the SBA standard.

    76. Credit Unions. This industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in accepting members' share deposits in cooperatives that are organized to offer consumer loans to their members. The SBA has determined that Credit Unions with $550 million or less in assets qualify as small businesses. The December 2013 National Credit Union Administration Call Report data indicate that 6,687 firms in this category operated throughout that year. Of those, 6,252 qualify as small entities. Based on this data, the Commission concludes that a substantial number of businesses in this category are small under the SBA standard.

    77. Other Depository Credit Intermediation. This industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in accepting deposits and lending funds (except commercial banking, savings institutions, and credit unions). Establishments known as industrial banks or Morris Plans and primarily engaged in accepting deposits, and private banks (i.e., unincorporated banks) are included in this industry. The SBA has determined that Other Depository Credit Intermediation entities with $550 million or less in assets qualify as small businesses. Census data for 2012 indicate that 6 firms in this category operated throughout that year. Due to the nature of this category, the Commission concludes that a substantial number of businesses in this category are small under the SBA standard.

    78. Sales Financing. This industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in sales financing or sales financing in combination with leasing. Sales financing establishments are primarily engaged in lending money for the purpose of providing collateralized goods through a contractual installment sales agreement, either directly from or through arrangements with dealers. The SBA has determined that Sales Financing entities with $38.5 million or less in annual receipts qualify as small businesses. Census data for 2012 indicate that 2,093 firms in this category operated throughout that year. Of those, 1,950 operated with annual receipts of less than $25 million. The Commission concludes that a substantial majority of businesses in this category are small under the SBA standard.

    79. Consumer Lending. This U.S. industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in making unsecured cash loans to consumers. The SBA has determined that Consumer Lending entities with $38.5 million or less in annual receipts qualify as small businesses. Census data for 2012 indicate that 2,768 firms in this category operated throughout that year. Of those, 2,702 operated with annual receipts of less than $25 million. The Commission concludes that a substantial majority of businesses in this category are small under the SBA standard.

    80. Real Estate Credit. This U.S. industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in lending funds with real estate as collateral. The SBA has determined that Real Estate Credit entities with $38.5 million or less in annual receipts qualify as small businesses. Census data for 2012 indicate that 2,535 firms in this category operated throughout that year. Of those, 2,223 operated with annual receipts of less than $25 million. The Commission concludes that a substantial majority of businesses in this category are small under the SBA standard.

    81. International Trade Financing. This U.S. industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in providing one or more of the following: (1) Working capital funds to U.S. exporters; (2) lending funds to foreign buyers of U.S. goods; and/or (3) lending funds to domestic buyers of imported goods. The SBA has determined that International Trade Financing entities with $38.5 million or less in annual receipts qualify as small businesses. Census data for 2012 indicate that 126 firms in this category operated throughout that year. Of those, 120 operated with annual receipts of less than $25 million. The Commission concludes that a substantial majority of businesses in this category are small under the SBA standard.

    82. Secondary Market Financing. This U.S. industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in buying, pooling, and repackaging loans for sale to others on the secondary market. The SBA has determined that Secondary Market Financing entities with $38.5 million or less in annual receipts qualify as small businesses. Census data for 2012 indicate that 89 firms in this category operated throughout that year. Of those, 78 operated with annual receipts of less than $25 million. The Commission concludes that a substantial majority of businesses in this category are small under the SBA standard.

    83. All Other Nondepository Credit Intermediation. This U.S. industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in providing nondepository credit (except credit card issuing, sales financing, consumer lending, real estate credit, international trade financing, and secondary market financing). Examples of types of lending in this industry are: Short-term inventory credit, agricultural lending (except real estate and sales financing), and consumer cash lending secured by personal property. The SBA has determined that All Other Nondepository Credit Intermediation entities with $38.5 million or less in annual receipts qualify as small businesses. Census data for 2012 indicate that 4,960 firms in this category operated throughout that year. Of those, 4,872 operated with annual receipts of less than $25 million. The Commission concludes that a substantial majority of businesses in this category are small under the SBA standard.

    84. Mortgage and Nonmortgage Loan Brokers. This industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in arranging loans by bringing borrowers and lenders together on a commission or fee basis. The SBA has determined that Mortgage and Nonmortgage Loan Brokers with $7.5 million or less in annual receipts qualify as small businesses. Census data for 2012 indicate that 6,157 firms in this category operated throughout that year. Of those, 5,939 operated with annual receipts of less than $5 million. The Commission concludes that a substantial majority of businesses in this category are small under the SBA standard.

    85. Other Activities Related to Credit Intermediation. This industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in facilitating credit intermediation (except mortgage and loan brokerage; and financial transactions processing, reserve, and clearinghouse activities). The SBA has determined that Other Activities Related to Credit Intermediation entities with $20.5 million or less in annual receipts qualify as small businesses. Census data for 2012 indicate that 3,989 firms in this category operated throughout that year. Of those, 3,860 operated with annual receipts of less than $20.5 million. The Commission concludes that a substantial majority of businesses in this category are small under the SBA standard.

    Description of Projected Reporting, Recordkeeping, and Other Compliance Requirements for Small Entities

    86. Document FCC 16-99 amends the Commission's rules implementing the TCPA to align them with the amended statutory language of the TCPA enacted by Congress in the 2015 Budget Act, creating an exception that allows the use of an autodialer, prerecorded-voice, and artificial-voice when making calls to wireless telephone numbers without the prior express consent of the called party when such calls are made solely to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States, and imposing limitations on autodialed, prerecorded-voice, and artificial-voice calls to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States. Document FCC 16-99 will likely impose a one-time cost on some entities to set up new recordkeeping and other compliance requirements. These changes affect small and large companies equally, and apply equally to all of the classes of regulated entities identified above.

    87. To comply with the right of the consumer to stop autodialed, artificial-voice, and prerecorded-voice federal debt collection calls to wireless numbers without consent, regulated entities must keep a record of any request made by a consumer for the cessation of the calls, and must pass that information to any subsequent collector or servicer of the debt if the debt is transferred. This rule obligates callers to retain records of consumers opting out of receiving these autodialed or prerecorded federal debt collection messages. Because autodialed, artificial-voice, and prerecorded-voice federal debt collection calls to wireless numbers required consent prior to these amendments, the Commission assumes calling entities have systems and procedures already in place to record consent and that the current way of doing business will be sufficient for tracking revocation of consent and will not impose new costs. However, the requirement to inform subsequent collectors or servicers of the revocation of consent might be new for some calling entities, and could impose a small initial cost to modify systems or procedures. This provision does not impose a significant economic impact on small businesses. The Commission did not receive any comments stating that this rule would cause a significant economic impact on small businesses. The Commission does not require a particular form or format to be used in conveying the revocation of consent to subsequent collectors or servicers when a debt is transferred.

    88. Federal debt collection calls made using a prerecorded or artificial voice must include an automated, interactive voice- and/or key press-activated opt-out mechanism so that debtors who receive these calls may make a stop-calling request during the call by pressing a single key. When a federal debt collection call using an artificial voice or prerecorded voice leaves a voicemail message, that message must also provide a toll-free number that the debtor may call at a later time to connect directly to the automated, interactive voice and/or key press-activated mechanism and automatically record the stop-calling request. Text message disclosures must include brief explanatory instructions for sending a stop-call request by reply text message and provide a toll-free number that enables the debtor to call back later to make a stop-call request. This rule obligates callers to modify their systems to produce the message, maintain toll-free numbers, and record any stop-call requests. Such records should demonstrate the caller's compliance with the provision and utilization of the automated, interactive opt-out feature. The Commission allows the calling entities the flexibility to determine how to implement the mechanism. The Commission does not require a particular form or format evidencing this mechanism or its implementation. This provision does not impose a significant economic impact on small businesses. The Commission did not receive any comments stating that this rule would cause a significant economic impact on small businesses.

    Steps Taken To Minimize the Significant Economic Impact on Small Entities, and Significant Alternatives Considered

    89. The RFA requires an agency to describe any significant alternatives that it has considered in reaching its approach, which may include the following four alternatives, among others: (1) The establishment of differing compliance or reporting requirements or timetables that take into account the resources available to small entities; (2) the clarification, consolidation, or simplification of compliance or reporting requirements under the rule for small entities; (3) the use of performance, rather than design, standards; and (4) an exemption from coverage of the rule, or any part thereof, for small entities.

    90. The amendments to the rules change the specific conditions under which a caller can use an autodialer, prerecorded voice, and artificial voice to make calls to a wireless number without the prior express consent of the called party and the limitations that apply to autodialed, prerecorded-voice, and artificial-voice calls to a wireless number made to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the United States. The limitations balance the importance of collecting debt owed to the United States and the consumer protections inherent in the TCPA. The Commission interprets the amendments as allowing such calls to be made by the federal government, owners of debt guaranteed by the federal government, and by their respective contractors. The amendments therefore benefit the federal government, owners of debt guaranteed by the federal government, and their respective contractors. Although the federal government is not a small business, many of the owners of debt guaranteed by the federal government and the contractors who make these calls are small businesses. Thus, the Commission considered the needs of small businesses in reaching its approach.

    91. Automated dialers and artificial-voice, and prerecorded-voice calling systems can be used to make thousands of calls without requiring commensurate staffing. By automating the process of making calls and texts, small businesses can make as many calls as large businesses. The volume of calls is not limited by the size of the business. Therefore limitations designed to protect consumer interests must apply to both large and small calling entities to be effective. The Commission believes that any economic burden these proposed rules may have on callers is outweighed by the benefits to consumers.

    92. Feedback. The Commission considered feedback from the 2016 NPRM in crafting the final order. Although none of the comments offered suggestions of ways to make the rules more friendly to small businesses, there were many comments from regulated callers with suggestions to make compliance easier for all, large and small. The Commission evaluated the comments in light of balancing the need to collect the debt with the need to protect consumer interests, and modified the proposed rules in several ways. For example, the Commission expanded the definition of the types of calls permitted to include debt servicing calls made following a specific, time-sensitive events such as a recertification deadline or the end of a deferment period, and in the 30 days before such an event, rather than limiting the exception to calls made when the debt is delinquent or in default. Similarly, the Commission expanded the reach of the exception by allowing covered calls to be made to a phone number subsequently provided by the debtor to the servicer or owner of the debt, or a number obtained from an independent source, rather than limiting calls to the number provided on the loan application. These changes benefit regulated entities of all sizes.

    93. Timetables. The Commission does not see a need to establish a special timetable for small entities to reach compliance with the modification to the rules. No small business has asked for a delay in implementing the rules.

    94. Reporting requirements; performance standards. Since the rule does not impose reporting requirements, there is no need to establish less burdensome reporting requirements for small businesses. Similarly, there are no design standards or performance standards to consider in this rulemaking.

    95. Exemption. The Commission does not see a need to consider an exemption for small businesses from the modified rules. No small business has asked for such an exemption.

    Congressional Review Act

    The Commission will send a copy of document FCC 16-99 to Congress and the Government Accountability Office pursuant to the Congressional Review Act, see 5 U.S.C. 801(a)(1)(A).

    Final Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 Analysis

    Document FCC 16-99 contains modified information collection requirements. The Commission, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork burdens, will invite the general public to comment on the information collection requirements contained in document FCC 16-99 as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995, Public Law 104-13. In addition, the Commission notes that, pursuant to the Small Business Paperwork Relief Act of 2002, Public Law 107-198, 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(4), the Commission previously sought comment on how the Commission might “further reduce the information burden for small business concerns with fewer than 25 employees.” See Rules and Regulations Implementing the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991, Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, published at 81 FR 31889, May 20, 2016 (2016 NPRM).

    List of Subjects in 47 CFR Part 64

    Claims, Communications common carriers, Credit, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Telecommunications, and Telephone.

    Federal Communications Commission. Marlene H. Dortch, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-24745 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6712-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY 48 CFR Parts 1032 and 1052 Department of the Treasury Acquisition Regulations; Incremental Funding of Fixed-Price, Time-and-Material or Labor-Hour Contracts During a Continuing Resolution AGENCY:

    Department of the Treasury.

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    This final rule amends the Department of Treasury Acquisition Regulation (DTAR) for the purposes of providing acquisition policy for incremental funding of Fixed-Price, Time-and-Material or Labor-Hour contracts during a continuing resolution.

    DATES:

    Effective date: December 16, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Thomas O'Linn, Procurement Analyst, Office of the Procurement Executive, at (202) 622-2092.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    The DTAR, which supplements the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR), is codified at 48 CFR Chapter 10.

    The Anti-Deficiency Act, 31 U.S.C. 1341 and the FAR section 32.702, state that no officer or employee of the government may create or authorize an obligation in excess of the funds available, or in advance of appropriations unless otherwise authorized by law. A continuing resolution (CR) provides funding for continuing projects or activities that were conducted in the prior fiscal year for which appropriations, funds, or other authority was previously made available.

    Each CR is governed by its specific terms. However, amounts available under a CR are frequently insufficient to fully fund contract actions that may be required during its term. No existing contract clause permits partial funding of a contract action awarded during a CR. While other strategies are available to address the need to take contract actions during a CR, these strategies—for example short-term awards—are inefficient and may have other disadvantages.

    On July 12, 2016, the Department issued a proposed rule (81 FR 45118) that would establish policies and procedures in order to facilitate successful, timely, and economical execution of Treasury contractual actions during a CR. Specifically, the proposed rule would set forth procedures for using incremental funding for fixed-price, time-and-material and labor-hour contracts during a period in which funds are provided to Treasury Departmental Offices or Bureaus under a CR. Heads of contracting activities may develop necessary supplemental internal procedures as well as guidance to advise potential offerors, offerors and contractors of these policies and procedures.

    The comment period for the proposed rule closed on September 12, 2016. No public comments were received. Accordingly, the Department is adopting the proposed rule without substantive change.

    Regulatory Planning and Review

    This rule is not a significant regulatory action as defined in section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866. Therefore a regulatory assessment is not required.

    Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. chapter 6) generally requires agencies to conduct an initial regulatory flexibility analysis and a final regulatory flexibility analysis of any rule subject to notice and comment rulemaking requirements, unless the agency certifies that the rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

    It is hereby certified that this rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. The rule is intended to make changes to the DTAR that would allow for improvements in continuity when Treasury funding is operating under a CR and should not have significant economic impacts on small entities.

    List of Subjects in 48 CFR Parts 1032 and 1052

    Government procurement.

    Accordingly, the Department of the Treasury amends 48 CFR Chapter 10 as follows:

    PART 1032—CONTRACT FINANCING 1. The authority citation for part 1032 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    41 U.S.C. 1707.

    2. Add subpart 1032.7 to read as follows: Subpart 1032.7—Contract Funding Sec. 1032.770 Incremental funding during a Continuing Resolution. 1032.770-1 Scope of section. 1032.770-2 Definition. 1032.770-3 General. 1032.770-4 Policy. 1032.770-5 Limitations. 1032.770-6 Procedures. 1032.770-7 Clause. Subpart 1032.7—Contract Funding
    1032.770 Incremental funding during a Continuing Resolution.
    1032.770-1 Scope of section.

    This section provides policy and procedure for using incremental funding for fixed-price, time-and-material and labor-hour contracts during a period in which funds are provided to Treasury Departmental Offices or Bureaus, under a continuing resolution (CR). HCAs may develop necessary supplemental internal procedures as well as guidance to advise potential offerors, offerors and contractors of these policies and procedures. Additionally, Bureaus who receive non-appropriated funds may utilize and tailor these policies and procedures to fit their needs.

    1032.770-2 Definition.

    “Continuing Resolution” means an appropriation, in the form of a joint resolution, that provides budget authority for federal agencies, specific activities, or both to continue operation until the regular appropriations are enacted. Typically, a continuing resolution is used when legislative action on appropriations is not completed by the beginning of a fiscal year.

    1032.770-3 General.

    The Anti-Deficiency Act, 31 U.S.C. 1341 and FAR 32.702, states that no officer or employee of the Government may create or authorize an obligation in excess of the funds available, or in advance of appropriations unless otherwise authorized by law. A CR provides funding for continuing projects or activities that were conducted in the prior fiscal year for which appropriations, funds, or other authority was previously made available. Each CR is governed by the specific terms in that specific CR (e.g. duration of the CR) and under certain CRs, the funding amounts available for award of contract actions are inadequate to fund the entire amounts needed for some contract actions.

    1032.770-4 Policy.

    (a) A fixed-price, time-and-materials or labor-hour contract or order for commercial or non-commercial supplies or severable or non-severable services may be incrementally funded when—

    (1) Funds are provided to a Treasury Departmental Office or Bureau under a CR. This includes funds appropriated to a bureau, funds appropriated to another entity that will be directly obligated on a Treasury contract, and funds in a revolving fund or similar account that will be reimbursed by a customer agency funded by a CR;

    (2) Sufficient funds are not being allocated from the responsible fiscal authority to fully fund the contract action that is otherwise authorized to be issued;

    (3) There is no statutory restriction that would preclude the proposed use of funds;

    (4) Funds are available and unexpired, as of the date the funds are obligated;

    (5) Assurance is provided by the responsible financial authority that full funding is anticipated once an Appropriation Act is enacted; and

    (6) The clause prescribed by 1032.770-7 is incorporated into the contract or order.

    (b) Incremental funding may be limited to individual line item(s) or a particular order(s).

    1032.770-5 Limitations.

    (a) This policy does not apply to contract actions that are not covered by the CR.

    (b) If this policy is applied to non-severable services or to supplies, the contracting officer shall take into consideration the business risk to the Government if funding does not become available to fully fund the contract. If the contracting officer determines the use of incremental funding for non-severable services or supplies is in the best interest of the Government the contracting officer shall ensure the contractor fully understands how the limitations of the Government's liabilities under the contract might impact its ability to perform within the prescribed contract schedule.

    1032.770-6 Procedures.

    (a) An incrementally funded fixed-price, time-and-materials or labor-hour contract shall be fully funded once funds are available.

    (b) The contracting officer shall ensure that sufficient funds are allotted to the contract to cover the total amount payable to the contractor in the event of termination of convenience by the Government.

    (c) Upon receipt of the contractor's notice under paragraph (c) of the clause at 1052.232-90, Limitation of Government's Obligation, the contracting officer shall promptly provide written notice to the contractor that the Government is—

    (i) Obligating additional funds for continued performance and increasing the Government's limitation of obligation in a specified amount;

    (ii) Obligating the full amount of funds needed;

    (iii) Terminating for convenience, as applicable, the affected line items or contract; or

    (iv) Considering whether to allot additional funds; and

    (A) The contractor is entitled by the contract terms to stop work when the Government's limitation of obligation is reached; and

    (B) Any costs expended beyond the Government's limitation of obligation are at the contractor's risk.

    (d) Upon learning that the contract will receive no further funds by the date provided in the notice under paragraph (c) of the clause at 1052.232-70, Limitation of Government's Obligation, the contracting officer shall promptly give the contractor written notice of the Government's decision and terminate the affected line items or contract, as applicable, for the convenience of the Government.

    1032.770-7 Clause.

    The contracting officer shall insert the clause at 1052.232-70, Limitation of Government's Obligation, in

    (a) Solicitations and resultant contracts when incremental funding of fixed-price, time-and-material or labor-hour contract via a CR is anticipated; or

    (b) Contracts or orders when incremental funding of a fixed-price, time-and-material or labor-hour contract is authorized and the Treasury Departmental Office or Bureau is operating under a CR (see 1032.770-4); and

    (c) The CO shall insert the information required in paragraphs (a) and (c) of the clause.

    PART 1052—SOLICITATION PROVISIONS AND CONTRACT CLAUSES 3. The authority citation for part 1052 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    41 U.S.C. 1707.

    4. Add 1052.232-70 to subpart 1052.2 to read as follows:
    1052.232-70 Limitation of Government's obligation.

    As prescribed in 1032.770-7, insert the following clause. Contracting officers are authorized, in appropriate cases, to revise paragraph (a) of this clause to specify the work required under the contract, in lieu of using contract line item numbers as well as revise paragraph (c) of this clause to specify a different notification period and percentage. The 30-day period may be varied from 45, 60 to 90 days, and the 75 percent from 75 to 85 percent:

    Limitation of Government's Obligation (Nov 2016)

    (a) Funding is not currently available to fully fund this contract due to the Government operating under a continuing resolution (CR). The item(s) listed in the table below are being incrementally funded as described below. The funding allotted to these item(s) is presently available for payment and allotted to this contract. This table will be updated by a modification to the contract when additional funds are made available, if any, to this contract.

    Contract line item number
  • (CLIN)
  • CLIN
  • total price
  • Funds
  • allotted to the
  • CLIN
  • Funds
  • required for complete
  • funding of the
  • CLIN
  • $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ Totals $ $ $

    (b) For the incrementally funded item(s) identified in paragraph (a) of this clause, the Contractor agrees to perform up to the point at which the total amount payable by the Government, including any invoice payments to which the Contractor is entitled and reimbursement of authorized termination costs in the event of termination of those item(s) for the Government's convenience, does not exceed the total amount currently obligated to those item(s). The Contractor is not authorized to continue work on these item(s) beyond that point. The Government will not be obligated in any event to reimburse the Contractor in excess of the amount allotted to the line items of the contract regardless of anything to the contrary in any other clause, including but not limited to the clause entitled “Termination for Convenience of the Government” or paragraph (1) entitled “Termination for the Government's Convenience” of the clause at FAR 52.212-4, “Commercial Terms and Conditions Commercial Items.”

    (c) Notwithstanding paragraph (h) of this clause, the Contractor shall notify the Contracting Officer in writing at least thirty days prior to the date when, in the Contractor's best judgment, the work will reach the point at which the total amount payable by the Government, including any cost for termination for convenience, will approximate 85 percent of the total amount then allotted to the contract for performance of the item(s) identified in paragraph (a) of this clause. The notification shall state the estimated date when that point will be reached and an estimate of additional funding, if any, needed to continue performance. The notification shall also advise the Contracting Officer of the estimated amount of additional funds required for the timely performance of the item(s) funded pursuant to this contract. If after such notification additional funds are not allotted by the date identified in the Contractor's notification, or by an agreed upon substitute date, the Contracting Officer will terminate any item(s) for which additional funds have not been allotted, pursuant to the terms of this contract authorizing termination for the convenience of the Government. Failure to make the notification required by this paragraph, whether for reasons within or beyond the Contractor's control, will not increase the maximum amount payable to the Contractor under paragraphs (a) and (b) of this clause.

    (d) The Government may at any time prior to termination allot additional funds for the performance of the item(s) identified in paragraph (a) of this clause.

    (e) The termination provisions of paragraphs (a) through (h) of this clause do not limit the rights of the Government under the clause entitled “Default” or “Termination for Cause.” The provisions of this clause are limited to the work and allotment of funds for the item(s) set forth in paragraph (a) of this clause. This clause no longer applies once the contract is fully funded.

    (f) Nothing in this clause affects the right of the Government to terminate this contract pursuant to the Government's termination for convenience terms set forth in this contract.

    (g) Nothing in this clause shall be construed as authorization of voluntary services whose acceptance is otherwise prohibited under 31 U.S.C. 1342.

    (h) The parties contemplate that the Government will allot funds to this contract from time to time as the need arises and as funds become available. There is no fixed schedule for providing additional funds.

    (End of clause)
    Dated: November 8, 2016. Iris B. Cooper, Senior Procurement Executive, Office of the Procurement Executive.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27548 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4810-25-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 679 [Docket No. 150916863-6211-02] RIN 0648-XF036 Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Pacific Cod in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Temporary rule; modification of a closure.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS is opening directed fishing for Pacific cod by catcher/processors using pot gear in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area (BSAI). This action is necessary to fully use the 2016 total allowable catch of Pacific cod allocated to catcher/processors using pot gear in the BSAI.

    DATES:

    Effective 1200 hours, Alaska local time (A.l.t.), November 15, 2016, through 2400 hours, A.l.t., December 31, 2016. Comments must be received at the following address no later than 4:30 p.m., A.l.t., December 1, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments on this document, identified by NOAA-NMFS-2015-0118, by any of the following methods:

    Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2015-0118, click the “Comment Now!” icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments.

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

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

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Josh Keaton, 907-586-7228.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

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

    NMFS closed directed fishing for Pacific cod by catcher/processors using pot gear in the BSAI under § 679.20(d)(1)(iii) on October 18, 2016 (81 FR 72009, October 19, 2016).

    NMFS has determined that as of November 7, 2016, approximately 2,000 metric tons of Pacific cod remain in the 2016 Pacific cod apportionment for catcher/processors using pot gear in the BSAI. Therefore, in accordance with § 679.25(a)(1)(i), (a)(2)(i)(C), and (a)(2)(iii)(D), and to fully use the 2016 total allowable catch (TAC) of Pacific cod in the BSAI, NMFS is terminating the previous closure and is opening directed fishing for Pacific cod by catcher/processors using pot gear in the BSAI. The Administrator, Alaska Region, NMFS, (Regional Administrator) considered the following factors in reaching this decision: (1) The current catch of Pacific cod by catcher/processors using pot gear in the BSAI and, (2) the harvest capacity and stated intent on future harvesting patterns of vessels in participating in this fishery.

    Classification

    This action responds to the best available information recently obtained from the fishery. The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, NOAA (AA), finds good cause to waive the requirement to provide prior notice and opportunity for public comment pursuant to the authority set forth at 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) as such requirement is impracticable and contrary to the public interest. This requirement is impracticable and contrary to the public interest as it would prevent NMFS from responding to the most recent fisheries data in a timely fashion and would delay the opening of directed fishing for Pacific cod by catcher/processors using pot gear in the BSAI. Immediate notification is necessary to allow for the orderly conduct and efficient operation of this fishery, to allow the industry to plan for the fishing season, and to avoid potential disruption to the fishing fleet and processors. NMFS was unable to publish a notice providing time for public comment because the most recent, relevant data only became available as of November 7, 2016.

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

    Without this inseason adjustment, NMFS could not allow the fishery for Pacific cod by catcher/processors using pot gear in the BSAI to be harvested in an expedient manner and in accordance with the regulatory schedule. Under § 679.25(c)(2), interested persons are invited to submit written comments on this action to the above address until December 1, 2016.

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

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: November 10, 2016. Jennifer M. Wallace, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27523 Filed 11-10-16; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    81 221 Wednesday, November 16, 2016 Proposed Rules DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY 10 CFR Part 1016 [Docket No. DOE-HQ-2015-0029-0001] RIN 1992-AA46 Safeguarding of Restricted Data by Access Permittees AGENCY:

    Department of Energy.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking and public hearings.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Energy (DOE or Department) proposes to revise its regulations governing the standards for safeguarding Restricted Data by access permittees. The existing version of this regulation was promulgated in 1983, which transferred the regulation (originally promulgated in 1976). Since 1983, changes in organizations, terminology, and DOE and national policies render portions of the existing regulation outdated. The proposed revisions would update existing requirements.

    DATES:

    Written comments must be received by DOE on or before December 16, 2016.

    A public meeting will be held if one is requested by November 23, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Written comments should be addressed to: Mr. Matthew B. Moury, Associate Under Secretary for Environment, Health, Safety and Security, Office of Environment, Health, Safety and Security, AU-1/Forrestal Building, Department of Energy, Docket No. DOE-HQ-2015-0029-0001, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585 or via email at [email protected] Questions concerning submitting written comments should be addressed to: Ms. Linda Ruhnow, Office of Security Policy, Office of Environment, Health, Safety and Security, Department of Energy, AU-51/Germantown Building, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585-1290, (301) 903-4053 or via email at [email protected] Requests to hold a public meeting should be submitted by phone or email to Ms. Ruhnow at the number or email address provided. You may submit comments, identified by [DOE-HQ-2015-0029-0001 and/or 1992-AA46], by any of the following methods:

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

    Email: [email protected] Include [DOE-HQ-2015-0029-0001 and/or 1992-AA46] in the subject line of the message.

    Mail: Mailing Address for paper, disk, or CD-ROM submissions: Department of Energy, Office of Security Policy, (AU-51, Attn: Linda Ruhnow), 1000 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20585-1290.

    Hand Delivery/Courier: Street Address: Department of Energy, Office of Security Policy, (AU-51, Attn: Linda Ruhnow), 1000 Independence Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20585-1290.

    As a result of potential delays in the receipt and processing of mail sent through the U.S. Postal Service, DOE encourages respondents to submit comments electronically to ensure timely receipt.

    Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name and docket number or Regulatory Information Number (RIN) for this rulemaking. All comments received will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided.

    Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or comments received, go to http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=DOE-HQ-2015-0008 or contact Linda Ruhnow at (301) 903-4053 prior to visiting Department of Energy, Office of Security Policy, (AU-51), 19901 Germantown Rd., Germantown, MD 20874.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ms. Linda Ruhnow, Office of Security Policy at (301) 903-4053; [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    I. Background II. Section by Section Analysis III. Regulatory Review and Procedural Requirements A. Review Under Executive Order 12866 B. Review Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act C. Review Under Paperwork Reduction Act D. Review Under the National Environmental Policy Act E. Review Under Executive Order 13132 F. Review Under Executive Order 12988 G. Review Under the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 H. Review Under Executive Order 13211 I. Review Under the Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act of 1999 IV. Opportunity for Public Comment I. Background

    The U.S. Department of Energy may issue an access permit to any person, as set forth in 10 CFR part 725, who requires access to Restricted Data applicable to civil uses of atomic energy for use in his/her business, trade or profession. 10 CFR part 725 specifies the terms and conditions under which the Department will issue an access permit and provides for the amendment, renewal, suspension, termination and revocation of an access permit.

    The regulations in 10 CFR part 1016 establish requirements for the safeguarding of Secret and Confidential Restricted Data received or developed under an access permit. This part does not apply to Top Secret information because no such information may be provided to an access permittee within the scope of this regulation. The regulations in this part apply to all persons who may require access to Restricted Data used, processed, stored, reproduced, transmitted, or handled in connection with an access permit.

    The original regulations for the safeguarding of Restricted Data were Atomic Energy Commission regulations that were transferred to the Energy Research and Development Administration (ERDA) upon its formation in 1974 (Energy Reorganization Act of 1974; Pub. L. 93-438). The regulations were subsequently revised to conform to ERDA's organization (41 FR 56775, 56785-56788, Dec. 30, 1976). The regulations were updated and transferred from 10 CFR part 795 to 10 CFR part 1016 in 1983. (48 FR 36432 (Aug. 10, 1983). DOE has developed the proposed modifications to 10 CFR part 1016 to reflect organizational, terminology and policy changes that have occurred since the regulations were last revised.

    The proposed modifications to the sections of 10 CFR part 1016 that DOE proposes to amend are described in the Section by Section Analysis in section II.

    II. Section by Section Analysis

    The heading for this part would be revised to Safeguarding of Restricted Data by Access Permittees. The revision is intended to more accurately reflect the contents of the regulation.

    Subpart A—General

    In § 1016.3, Definitions, DOE proposes to delete the term “Authorized classifier”. Instead, 10 CFR part 1045 would be referenced as the source of classification requirements.

    The terms “Document”, “Material” and “Matter” would be deleted because they are not used in any unique way in this regulation.

    The access authorization terms Q, Q(X), L and L(X) would be updated to specify the type of background investigation required. For example, single scope background investigations are required for Q access authorizations.

    The term “classified mail address” would be revised for better grammar.

    The term “classified matter” would be revised to include all documents, material, electronic media and other physical forms that reveal or contain classified information.

    The term “infraction” would be revised to include non-compliance with DOE approvals.

    The term “intrusion alarm” would be revised to “intrusion detection system” and updated for more accurate usage consistent with current DOE policy.

    The term “National Security Information” would be revised for consistency with Executive Order 13526, Classified National Security Information.

    The term “Security Plan” would be revised to clarify that matter refers to classified matter.

    Proposed changes for § 1016.4 would revise the addressee from the “Chief Health, Safety and Security Officer”, to the “Associate Under Secretary of Environment, Health, Safety and Security” to address a recent reorganization.

    Proposed changes for § 1016.5 would require that procedures submitted pursuant to this section ensure that access permit holder employees are informed about classification and declassification requirements in 10 CFR part 1045.

    DOE proposes to change the title of § 1016.8 to clarify the section topic.

    The proposed changes for § 1016.9 and § 1016.10 revise grammar.

    The proposed changes for § 1016.11 would revise “DOE Operations Office” to “the cognizant DOE office” to direct notification to the relevant DOE Element.

    The proposed changes for § 1016.12 would update reference to reflect the proposed renumbering of current § 1016.39.

    DOE proposes to renumber §§ 1016.21—1016.44 to eliminate the gaps in section numbering that exist in the current version of this regulation.

    The renumbered § 1016.13, currently § 1016.21, would be revised to maintain consistency with current national and U.S. Department of Energy policies that no longer allows storage of classified matter in a locked steel file cabinet.

    Proposed changes to the renumbered § 1016.14, currently § 1016.22, would clarify that a person must have need-to-know in addition to the appropriate access authorization. This revision does not change the intent of the requirement for protecting Restricted Data that is in use.

    Proposed changes to the renumbered § 1016.15, currently § 1016.23, would update intrusion detection system terminology consistent with DOE policy and delete the word “may”.

    Proposed changes to the renumbered § 1016.17, currently § 1016.25, would update the weapon specification to match current DOE policy. DOE Order 473.3, Protection Program Operations lists DOE-authorized firearms.

    Proposed changes to the renumbered § 1016.18, currently § 1016.31, would apply the need-to-know criterion for Confidential as well as Secret Restricted Data.

    Proposed changes to the renumbered § 1016.19, currently § 1016.32, would align requirements and terminology with 10 CFR part 1045, Nuclear Classification and Declassification. Also, the title would be changed to more accurately reflect the section and the “Office of Health, Safety and Security” would be replaced with “Office of Environment, Health, Safety and Security”.

    Proposed changes to the renumbered § 1016.20, currently § 1016.33, would specify need-to-know as a basic criteria for determining access; indicate required approvals and remove the telephone statement because it is a subset of the telecommunication statement.

    Proposed changes to the renumbered § 1016.21, currently § 1016.34, would reflect that classified matter (including matter in electronic format) containing Secret Restricted Data requires accountability.

    Proposed changes to the renumbered § 1016.23, currently § 1016.36, would make changes in classification subject to the requirements in 10 CFR part 1045, Nuclear Classification and Declassification.

    Proposed changes to the renumbered § 1016.24, currently § 1016.37, would amend the title to replace “documents or material” with “classified matter” and would delete provisions that are duplicative with the renumbered § 1016.21 regarding accountability of classified matter that contains Restricted Data.

    Proposed new § 1016.25, Storage, use, processing, transmission and destruction of classified information on computers, computer networks, electronic devices/media, and mobile devices, would be added to include additional direction regarding newer forms of media (electronic) that may contain Restricted Data.

    Proposed changes to the renumbered § 1016.27, currently § 1016.39 would clarify that termination of the security facility approval will be in accordance with the requirements in this part.

    Proposed changes to the renumbered § 1016.31, currently § 1016.43, would update the reference to Executive Order 13526.

    Throughout the proposed changes, the term “classified matter” is used so as to include documents and material.

    III. Rulemaking Requirements A. Review Under Executive Order 12866

    This action does not constitute a “significant regulatory action” as defined in section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866, “Regulatory Planning and Review” (58 FR 51735).

    B. Review Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) requires preparation of a regulatory flexibility analysis for any rule that by law must be proposed for public comment, unless the agency certifies that the rule, if promulgated, will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. As required by Executive Order 13272, “Proper Consideration of Small Entities in Agency Rulemaking” (67 FR 53461, Aug. 16, 2002), DOE published procedures and policies on February 19, 2003, to ensure that the potential impacts of its rules on small entities are properly considered during the rulemaking process. DOE has made its procedures and policies available on the Office of the General Counsel's Web site (www.gc.doe.gov).

    DOE has reviewed this proposed rule under the Regulatory Flexibility Act and certifies that, if adopted, the rule would not have a significant impact on a substantial number of small entities. This proposed action would amend an existing rule which establishes safeguarding of Restricted Data by persons granted an Access Permit according to 10 CFR part 725. The rule would only apply to Access Permittees, of which there are historically very few (e.g., between zero and five), and the proposed changes are administrative changes (such as renumbering of several parts and changing office names to reflect a recent reorganization), updates to enable consistency with current policies and practices, and clarification of requirements.

    Because these standards and requirements consist of clarifications and updates to existing standards and requirements, DOE does not expect that the impact on any Access Permittees would be significant. DOE seeks comment on its estimate of the number of small entities and the expected effects of this proposed rule.

    For the above reasons, DOE certifies that the proposed rule, if adopted, will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

    C. Review Under Paperwork Reduction Act

    This proposed rule does not contain a collection of information subject to OMB approval under the Paperwork Reduction Act.

    D. Review Under the National Environmental Policy Act

    This proposed rule amends existing policies and procedures establishing safeguarding of Restricted Data standards and requirements for Access Permittees and has no significant environmental impact. Consequently, the Department has determined that this rule is covered under Categorical Exclusion A-5, of Appendix A to Subpart D, 10 CFR part 1021, which applies to a rulemaking that addresses amending an existing rule or regulation that does not change the environmental effect of the rule or regulation being amended. Accordingly, neither an environmental assessment nor an environmental impact statement is required.

    E. Review Under Executive Order 13132

    Executive Order 13132, “Federalism,” (64 FR 43255, August 4, 1999), imposes certain requirements on agencies formulating and implementing policies or regulations that preempt State law or that have federalism implications. Agencies are required to develop a formal process to ensure meaningful and timely input by State and local officials in the development of regulatory policies that have “federalism implications.” Policies that have federalism implications are defined in the Executive Order to include regulations that have “substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.” On March 7, 2011, DOE published a statement of policy describing the intergovernmental consultation process it will follow in the development of such regulations (65 FR 13735, March 14, 2000).

    DOE has examined the proposed and revised rule and has determined that it does not have a substantial direct effect on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government. No further action is required by Executive Order 13132.

    F. Review Under Executive Order 12988

    Section 3 of Executive Order 12988, (61 FR 4729, February 7, 1996), instructs each agency to adhere to certain requirements in promulgating new regulations. These requirements, set forth in section 3(a) and (b), include eliminating drafting errors and needless ambiguity, drafting the regulations to minimize litigation, providing clear and certain legal standards for affected legal conduct, and promoting simplification and burden reduction. Agencies are also instructed to make every reasonable effort to ensure that the regulation describes any administrative proceeding to be available prior to judicial review and any provisions for the exhaustion of administrative remedies. The Department has determined that this regulatory action meets the requirements of section 3(a) and (b) of Executive Order 12988.

    G. Review Under the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

    Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (UMRA) requires each Federal agency to assess the effects of Federal regulatory action on state, local and tribal governments and the private sector. For proposed regulatory actions likely to result in a rule that may cause expenditures by State, local, and Tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector of $100 million or more in any one year (adjusted annually for inflation), section 202 of UMRA requires a Federal agency to publish estimates of the resulting costs, benefits, and other effects on the national economy. UMRA also requires Federal agencies to develop an effective process to permit timely input by elected officers of State, local, and Tribal governments on a proposed “significant intergovernmental mandate.” In addition, UMRA requires an agency plan for giving notice and opportunity for timely input to small governments that may be affected before establishing a requirement that might significantly or uniquely affect them. On March 18, 1997, DOE published a statement of policy on its process for intergovernmental consultation under UMRA (62 FR 12820, March 18, 1997). (This policy is also available at http://www.gc.doe.gov). This proposed rule contains neither an intergovernmental mandate, nor a mandate that may result in the expenditure of $100 million or more in any year, so these requirements do not apply.

    H. Review Under Executive Order 13211

    Executive Order 13211, “Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use,” (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001) requires Federal agencies to prepare and submit to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), Office of Management and Budget, a Statement of Energy Effects for any proposed significant energy action. A “significant energy action” is defined as any action by an agency that promulgates or is expected to lead to the promulgation of a final rule, and that: (1) Is a significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866, or any successor order; and (2) is likely to have a significant adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or use of energy; or (3) is designated by the Administrator of OIRA as a significant energy action. For any proposed significant energy action, the agency must give a detailed statement of any adverse effects on energy supply, distribution, or use should the proposal be implemented, and of reasonable alternates to the action and their expected benefits on energy supply, distribution, and use.

    This proposed rule is not a significant energy action, nor has it been designated as such by the Administrator of OIRA. Accordingly, DOE has not prepared a Statement of Energy Effects.

    I. Review Under the Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act, 1999

    Section 654 of the Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act, 1999 (Pub. L. 105-277) requires Federal agencies to issue a Family Policymaking Assessment for any proposed rule or policy that may affect family well-being. This proposed rule would not have any impact on the autonomy or integrity of the family as an institution. Accordingly, DOE has concluded that it is not necessary to prepare a Family Policymaking Assessment.

    IV. Opportunity for Public Comment A. Participation in Rulemaking

    DOE encourages the maximum level of public participation in this rulemaking. Interested persons are encouraged to participate in the public hearings at the times and places indicated at the beginning of this proposed rulemaking.

    DOE has established a period of thirty days following publication of this proposed rulemaking for persons and organizations to comment. All public comments, hearing transcripts, and other docket material will be available for review and copying at the DOE offices at each of the hearing sites. The docket material will be filed under “DOE-HQ-2015-0029-0001.”

    B. Written Comment Procedures

    Interested persons are invited to participate in this proceeding by submitting written data, views or arguments with respect to the subjects set forth in this proposed rulemaking. Instructions for submitting written comments are set forth at the beginning of this notice and below. Where possible, comments should identify the specific section they address.

    Comments should be labeled both on the envelope and on the documents, “Docket No. DOE-HQ-2015-0029-0001” and must be received by the date specified at the beginning of this proposed rulemaking. All comments and other relevant information received by the date specified at the beginning of this proposed rulemaking will be considered by DOE in the subsequent stages of the rulemaking process.

    Pursuant to the provisions of 10 CFR part 1004, any person submitting information or data that is believed to be confidential and exempt by law from public disclosure should submit one complete copy of the document and three copies, if possible, from which the information believed to be confidential has been deleted. DOE will make its own determination with regard to the confidential status of the information or data and treat it according to its determination.

    C. Public Hearings

    The dates, times and places of the public hearings are indicated at the beginning of this proposed rulemaking. DOE invites any person or organization who has an interest in these proceedings to make a request to make an oral presentation at one of the public hearings. Requests can be phoned in advance to the telephone number indicated at the beginning of this proposed rulemaking. The person making the request should provide a telephone number where he or she may be contacted.

    DOE reserves the right to schedule the presentations, and to establish the procedures governing the conduct of the hearings.

    A DOE official will be designated to preside at the hearings and ask questions. Any necessary procedural rules regarding proper conduct of the hearings will be determined by the presiding official.

    Transcripts of the hearings will be made and the entire record of this rulemaking, including the transcripts, will be retained by DOE and made available for inspection and copying as provided at the beginning of this proposed rulemaking as well as being posted on www.regulations.gov under Docket Number DOE-HQ-2015-0029-0001. Any person may also purchase a copy of a transcript from the transcribing reporter.

    List of Subjects in 10 CFR Part 1016

    Classified information, Nuclear energy, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Security measures.

    Issued in Washington, DC, on November 1, 2016. Matthew B. Moury, Associate Under Secretary for Environment, Health, Safety and Security.

    For the reasons set out in the preamble, DOE proposes to amend part 1016 of title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations as set forth below:

    PART 1016—SAFEGUARDING OF RESTRICTED DATA BY ACCESS PERMITTEES 1. The authority citation for part 1016 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    Sec. 161i of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, 68 Stat. 948 (42 U.S.C. 2201).

    2. The part heading for part 1016 is revised as set forth above. 3. Section 1016.3 is amended by: a. Revising paragraph (a). b. Removing paragraphs (c). c. Redesignating paragraphs (d) and (e) as paragraphs (c) and (d), respectively. d. Revising newly designated paragraphs (c) and (d). e. Redesignating paragraphs (f) and (g) as paragraphs (e) and (f), respectively. f. Removing paragraph (h). g. Redesignating paragraphs (i) through (k) as paragraphs (g) through (i), respectively. h. Revising newly designated paragraphs (h) and (i). i. Removing paragraphs (l) and (m). j. Redesignating paragraphs (n) through (z) as paragraphs (j) through (v), respectively. k. Revising newly designated paragraphs (k) and (u).

    The revisions read as follows:

    § 1016.3 Definitions.

    (a) Access authorization. An administrative determination by DOE that an individual who is either a DOE employee, applicant for employment, consultant, assignee, other Federal department or agency employee (or other persons who may be designated by the Secretary of Energy), or a DOE contractor or subcontractor employee, or an access permittee is eligible for access to Restricted Data. Access authorizations granted by DOE are designated as “Q,” “Q(X),” “L,” or “L(X).”

    (1) “Q” access authorizations are based upon single scope background investigations as set forth in applicable DOE and national-level directives. They permit an individual who has “need to know” access to Top Secret, Secret and Confidential Restricted Data, Formerly Restricted Data, National Security Information, or special nuclear material in Category I or II quantities as required in the performance of duties, subject to additional determination that permitting this access will not endanger the common defense or national security of the United States. There may be additional requirements for access to specific types of RD information.

    (2) “Q(X)” access authorizations are based upon the same level of investigation required for a Q access authorization when “Q” access authorizations are granted to access permittees they are identified as “Q(X)” access authorizations and, as need-to-know applies, authorize access only to the type of Secret Restricted Data as specified in the permit and consistent with appendix A, 10 CFR part 725, “Categories of Restricted Data Available.”

    (3) “L” access authorizations are based upon National Agency Check with Local Agency Checks and Credit Check background investigation as set forth in applicable DOE and national-level directives. They permit an individual who has “need to know” access to Confidential Restricted Data, Secret and Confidential Formerly Restricted Data, or Secret and Confidential National Security Information, required in the performance of duties, provided such information is not designated “CRYPTO” (classified cryptographic information), other classified communications security (“COMSEC”) information, or intelligence information and subject to additional determination that permitting this access will not endanger the common defense or national security of the United States. There may be additional requirements for access to specific types of RD information.

    (4) “L(X)” access authorizations are based upon the same level of investigation required for an L access authorization When “L” access authorizations are granted to access permittees, they are identified as “L(X)” access authorizations and, as need to know applies, authorize access only to the type of Confidential Restricted Data as specified in the permit and consistent with appendix A, 10 CFR part 725, “Categories of Restricted Data Available.”

    (c) Classified mail address. A mail address established for each access permittee and approved by the DOE to be used when sending Restricted Data to the permittee.

    (d) Classified matter. Anything in physical form (including, but not limited to documents and material) that contains or reveals classified information.

    (h) Infraction. An act or omission involving failure to comply with DOE safeguards and security orders, directives, or approvals and may include a violation of law.

    (i) Intrusion detection system. A security system consisting of sensors capable of detecting one or more types of phenomena, signal media, annunciators, energy sources, alarm assessment systems, and alarm reporting elements including alarm communications and information display equipment.

    (k) National Security Information. Information that has been determined pursuant to Executive Order 13526, as amended “Classified National Security Information” or any predecessor or successor order to require protection against unauthorized disclosure and is marked to indicate its classified status when in documentary form.

    (u) Security Plan. A written plan by the access permittee, and submitted to the DOE for approval, which outlines the permittee's proposed security procedures and controls for the protection of Restricted Data and which includes a floor plan of the area in which the classified matter is to be used, processed, stored, reproduced, transmitted, or handled.

    4. Section 1016.4 is revised to read as follows:
    § 1016.4 Communications.

    Communications concerning rulemaking, i.e., petition to change part 1016, should be addressed to the Associate Under Secretary, Office of Environment, Health, Safety and Security, AU-1/Forrestal Building, Office of Environment, Health, Safety and Security, U.S. Department of Energy, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585. All other communications concerning the regulations in this part should be addressed to the cognizant DOE or National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) office.

    5. Section 1016.5 is revised to read as follows:
    § 1016.5 Submission of procedures by access permit holder.

    No access permit holder shall have access to Restricted Data until he has submitted to the DOE a written statement of his procedures for the safeguarding of Restricted Data and for the security education of his employees, and DOE shall have determined and informed the permittee that his procedures for the safeguarding of Restricted Data are in compliance with the regulations in this part and that his procedures for the security education of his employees, who will have access to Restricted Data, are informed about and understand the regulations in this part. These procedures must ensure that employees with access to Restricted Data are informed about and understand who is authorized or required to classify and declassify RD and FRD information and classified matter as well as how documents containing RD or FRD are marked (see 10 CFR part 1045) and safeguarded.

    6. The section heading for § 1016.8 is revised to read as follows:
    § 1016.8 Request for security facility approval.
    7. Section 1016.9 is revised to read as follows:
    § 1016.9 Processing security facility approval.

    Following receipt of an acceptable request for security facility approval, the DOE will perform an initial security survey of the permittee's facility to determine that granting a security facility approval would be consistent with the national security. If DOE makes such a determination, security facility approval will be granted. If not, security facility approval will be withheld pending compliance with the security survey recommendations or until a waiver is granted pursuant to § 1016.6 of this part.

    8. Section 1016.10 is revised to read as follows:
    § 1016.10 Granting, denial, or suspension of security facility approval.

    Notification of the DOE's granting, denial, or suspension of security facility approval will be furnished the permittee in writing, or orally with written confirmation. This information may also be furnished to representatives of the DOE, DOE contractors, or other Federal agencies having a need to transmit Restricted Data to the permittee.

    9. Section 1016.11 is revised to read as follows:
    § 1016.11 Cancellation of requests for security facility approval.

    When a request for security facility approval is to be withdrawn or cancelled, the cognizant DOE Office will be notified by the requester immediately by telephone and confirmed in writing so that processing of this approval may be terminated.

    10. Section 1016.12 is revised to read as follows:
    § 1016.12 Termination of security facility approval.

    Security facility approval will be terminated when:

    (a) There is no longer a need to use, process, store, reproduce, transmit, or handle Restricted Data at the facility; or

    (b) The DOE makes a determination that continued security facility approval is not in the interest of common defense and security.

    The permittee will be notified in writing of a determination to terminate facility approval, and the procedures outlined in § 1016.27 of this part will apply.

    §§ 1016.21 through 1016.23 [Redesignated as §§ 1016.13 through 1016.15]
    11. Sections 1016.21 through 1016.23 are redesignated as §§ 1016.13 through 1016.15 and revised to read as follows:
    § 1016.13 Protection of Restricted Data in storage.

    (a) Persons who possess Restricted Data pursuant to an Access Permit shall store the Restricted Data classified matter when not in use in a locked storage container or DOE-approved vault to which only persons with appropriate access authorization and a need to know the information contained have access. Storage containers used for storing classified matter must conform to U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) standards and specifications.

    (b) Changes of combination: Each permittee shall change the combination on locks of his safekeeping equipment whenever such equipment is placed in use, whenever an individual knowing the combination no longer requires access to the repository as a result of change in duties or position in the permittee's organization, or termination of employment with the permittee or whenever the combination has been subjected to compromise, and in any event at least once a year. Permittees shall classify records of combinations no lower than the highest classification of the classified matter authorized for storage in the safekeeping equipment concerned.

    § 1016.14 Protection of Restricted Data while in use.

    While in use, classified matter containing Restricted Data shall be under the direct control of a person with the appropriate access authorization and need to know. Unauthorized access to the Restricted Data shall be precluded.

    § 1016.15 Establishment of security areas.

    (a) When, because of their nature or size, it is impracticable to safeguard classified matter containing Restricted Data in accordance with the provisions of §§ 1016.13 and 1016.14, a security area to protect such classified matter shall be established.

    (b) The following controls shall apply to security areas:

    (1) Security areas shall be separated from adjacent areas by a physical barrier designed to prevent entrance into such areas, and access to the Restricted Data within the areas, by unauthorized individuals.

    (2) During working hours, admittance shall be controlled by an appropriately cleared individual posted at each unlocked entrance.

    (3) During nonworking hours, admittance shall be controlled by protective personnel on patrol, with protective personnel posted at unlocked entrances, or by such intrusion detection system as DOE approves.

    (4) Each individual authorized to enter a security area shall be issued a distinctive badge or pass when the number of employees assigned to the area exceeds thirty.

    § 1016.24 [Redesignated as § 1016.16]
    12. Section 1016.24 is redesignated as § 1016.16.
    § 1016.25 [Redesignated as § 1016.17]
    13. Section 1016.25 is redesignated as § 1016.17 and revised to read as follows:
    § 1016.17 Protective personnel.

    Whenever armed protective personnel are required in accordance with § 1016.15, such protective personnel shall:

    (a) Possess a “Q” or “L” access authorization or “Q(X)” or “L(X)” access authorization if the Restricted Data being protected is classified Confidential, or a “Q” access authorization or “Q(X)” access authorization if the Restricted Data being protected is classified Secret.

    (b) Be armed with sidearms of 9mm or greater.

    §§ 1016.31 through 1016.34 [Redesignated as §§ 1016.18 through 1016.21]
    14. Sections 1016.31 through 1016.34 are redesignated as §§ 1016.18 through 1016.21 and revised to read as follows:
    § 1016.18 Access to Restricted Data.

    (a) Except as DOE may authorize, no person subject to the regulations in this part shall permit any individual to have access to Restricted Data in his possession unless the individual has an appropriate access authorization granted by DOE, or has been certified by DOD or NASA through DOE, and;

    (1) The individual is authorized by an Access Permit to receive Restricted Data in the categories involved and the permittee determines that such access is required in the course of his duties, or

    (2) The individual needs such access in connection with such duties as a DOE employee or DOE contractor employee, or as certified by DOD or NASA.

    (b) Inquiries concerning the access authorization status of individuals, the scope of Access Permits, or the nature of contracts should be addressed to the cognizant DOE or NNSA office.

    § 1016.19 Review, classification and marking of classified information.

    (a) Classification. Restricted Data generated or possessed by an Access Permit holder must be appropriately classified and marked in accordance with 10 CFR part 1045 or its successor. CG-DAR-2, “Guide to the Declassified Areas of Nuclear Energy Research U 08/98,” will be furnished each permittee. In the event a permittee originates classified information which falls within the definition of Restricted Data or information for which the permittee is not positive that the information is outside of that definition and CG-DAR-2 does not provide positive classification guidance for such information, the permittee shall designate the information as Confidential, Restricted Data and request classification guidance from the DOE through the Classification Officer at the cognizant DOE or NNSA office. If the DOE Classification Officer does not have authority to provide the guidance, he will refer the request to the Director, Office of Classification, AU-60/Germantown Building, Office of Environment, Health, Safety and Security, U.S. Department of Energy, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585-1290.

    (b) Challenges. If a person receives a document or other classified matter which, in his opinion, is not properly classified, or omits the appropriate classification markings, he is encouraged to challenge the classification and there shall be no retribution for submitting a challenge. Challenges shall be submitted in accordance with 10 CFR part 1045.

    (c) Classification markings. Restricted Data generated or possessed by an individual approved for access must be appropriately identified and marked in accordance with 10 CFR part 1045, Nuclear Classification and Declassification. Questions and requests for additional direction or guidance regarding the marking of classified matter may be submitted to the Director, Office of Classification, AU-60/Germantown Building, Office of Environment, Health, Safety and Security, U.S. Department of Energy, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585-1290

    § 1016.20 External transmission of Restricted Data.

    (a) Restrictions. (1) Restricted Data shall be transmitted only to persons who possess appropriate access authorization, need to know, and are otherwise eligible for access under the requirements of § 1016.18.

    (2) In addition, such classified matter containing Restricted Data shall be transmitted only to persons who possess approved facilities for their physical security consistent with this part. Any person subject to the regulations in this part who transmits such Restricted Data containing Restricted Data shall be deemed to have fulfilled his obligations under this subparagraph by securing a written certification from the prospective recipient that such recipient possesses facilities for its physical security consistent with this part.

    (3) Restricted Data shall not be exported from the United States without prior authorization from DOE.

    (b) Preparation of documents. Documents containing Restricted Data shall be prepared for transmission outside an individual installation in accordance with the following:

    (1) They shall be enclosed in two sealed, opaque envelopes or wrappers.

    (2) The inner envelope or wrapper shall be addressed in the ordinary manner and sealed with tape, the appropriate classification shall be marked on both sides of the envelope, and any additional marking required by 10 CFR part 1045 shall be applied.

    (3) The outer envelope or wrapper shall be addressed in the ordinary manner. No classification, additional marking, or other notation shall be affixed which indicates that the document enclosed therein contains classified information or Restricted Data.

    (4) A receipt which identifies the document, the date of transfer, the recipient, and the person transferring the document shall accompany the document and shall be signed by the recipient and returned to the sender whenever the custody of a document containing Secret Restricted Data is transferred.

    (c) Preparation of other classified matter. Classified matter, other than documents, containing Restricted Data shall be prepared for shipment outside an individual installation in accordance with the following:

    (1) The classified matter shall be so packaged that the classified characteristics will not be revealed.

    (2) A receipt which identifies the classified matter, the date of shipment, the recipient, and the person transferring the classified matter shall accompany the classified matter, and the recipient shall sign such receipt whenever the custody of classified matter containing Secret Restricted Data is transferred.

    (d) Methods of transportation. (1) Secret classified matter shall be transported only by one of the following methods:

    (i) By messenger-courier system specifically created for that purpose and approved for use by DOE.

    (ii) Registered mail.

    (iii) By protective services provided by United States air or surface commercial carriers under such conditions as may be preserved by the DOE.

    (iv) Individuals possessing appropriate DOE access authorization who have been given written authority by their employers.

    (2) Confidential classified matter may be transported by one of the methods set forth in paragraph (d)(1) of this section or by U.S. first class, express, or certified mail.

    (e) Telecommunication of classified information. There shall be no telecommunication of Restricted Data unless the secure telecommunication system has been approved by the DOE.

    § 1016.21 Accountability for Secret Restricted Data.

    Each permittee possessing classified matter (including classified matter in electronic format) containing Secret Restricted Data shall establish accountability procedures and shall maintain logs to document access to and record comprehensive disposition information for all such classified matter that has been in his custody at any time.

    § 1016.35 [Redesignated as § 1016.22]
    15. Section 1016.35 is redesignated as § 1016.22.
    §§ 1016.36 and 1016.37 [Redesignated as §§ 1016.23 and 1016.24]
    16. Sections 1016.36 and 1016.37 are redesignated as §§ 1016.23 and 1016.24 and revised to read as follows:
    § 1016.23 Changes in classification.

    Classified matter containing Restricted Data shall not be downgraded or declassified except as authorized by DOE and in accordance with 10 CFR part 1045.

    § 1016.24 Destruction of classified matter containing Restricted Data.

    Documents containing Restricted Data may be destroyed by burning, pulping, or another method that assures complete destruction of the information which they contain. Restricted Data contained in classified matter, other than documents, may be destroyed only by a method that assures complete obliteration, removal, or destruction of the Restricted Data.

    17. Add § 1016.25 to read as follows:
    § 1016.25 Storage, use, processing, transmission and destruction of classified information on computers, computer networks, electronic devices/media and mobile devices.

    Storage, use, processing, and transmission of Restricted Data on computers, computer networks, electronic devices/media and mobile devices must be approved by DOE. DOE-approved methods must be used when destroying classified information that is in electronic format.

    § 1016.38 [Redesignated as § 1016.26]
    18. Section 1016.38 is redesignated as § 1016.26.
    § 1016.39 [Redesignated as § 1016.27]
    19. Section 1016.39 is redesignated as § 1016.27 and revised to read as follows:
    § 1016.27 Termination, suspension, or revocation of security facility approval.

    (a) In accordance with § 1016.12, if the need to use, process, store, reproduce, transmit, or handle classified matter no longer exists, the security facility approval will be terminated. The permittee may deliver all Restricted Data to the DOE or to a person authorized to receive them; or the permittee may destroy all such Restricted Data. In either case, the facility must submit a certification of non-possession of Restricted Data to the DOE.

    (b) In any instance where security facility approval has been suspended or revoked based on a determination of the DOE that further possession of classified matter by the permittee would endanger the common defense and national security, the permittee shall, upon notice from the DOE, immediately deliver all Restricted Data to the DOE along with a certificate of non-possession of Restricted Data.

    §§ 1016.40 through 1016.42 [Redesignated as §§ 1016.28 through 1016.30]
    20. §§ 1016.40 through 1016.42 are redesignated as §§ 1016.28 through 1016.30.
    § 1016.43 [Redesignated as § 1016.31]
    21. Section 1016.43 is redesignated as § 1016.31 and revised to read as follows:
    § 1016.31 Inspections.

    The DOE shall make such inspections and surveys of the premises, activities, records, and procedures of any person subject to the regulations in this part as DOE deems necessary to effectuate the purposes of the Act, Executive Order 13526, and DOE orders and procedures.

    § 1016.44 [Redesignated as § 1016.32]
    22. Section 1016.44 is redesignated as § 1016.32.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27414 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2016-9193; Airspace Docket No. 16-AGL-26] Proposed Establishment of Class E Airspace; Wessington Springs, SD AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

    SUMMARY:

    This action proposes to establish Class E airspace at Wessington Springs, SD. Controlled airspace is necessary to accommodate new Standard Instrument Approach Procedures developed at Wessington Springs Airport, for the safety and management of Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) operations at the airport.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before January 3, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Send comments on this proposal to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590; telephone (202) 366-9826 or (800) 617-5527. You must identify the docket number FAA Docket No. FAA-2016-9193/Airspace Docket No.16-AGL-26, 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 7400.11A, 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 7400.11A at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to http://www.archives.gov/federal_register/code_of_federal-regulations/ibr_locations.html.

    FAA Order 7400.11, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, is published yearly and effective on September 15.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Rebecca Shelby, Central Service Center, Operations Support Group, Federal Aviation Administration, Southwest Region, 10101 Hillwood Parkway, Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone: 817-222-5857.

    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 Wessington Springs Airport, Wessington Springs, SD.

    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-2016-9193/Airspace Docket No. 16-AGL-26.” The postcard will be date/time stamped and returned to the commenter.

    All communications received before the specified closing date for comments will be considered before taking action on the proposed rule. The proposal contained in this notice may be changed in light of the comments received. A report summarizing each substantive public contact with FAA personnel concerned with this rulemaking will be filed in the docket.

    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/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 ADDRESSES section for 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 Central Service Center, Operation 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 7400.11A, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2016, and effective September 15, 2016. FAA Order 7400.11A is publicly available as listed in the ADDRESSES section of this document. FAA Order 7400.11A 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 within a 6.5-mile radius of Wessington Springs Airport, Wessington Springs, SD, 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 Paragraph 6005 of FAA Order 7400.11A, dated August 3, 2016, and effective September 15, 2016, which is incorporated by reference in 14 CFR 71.1. The Class E airspace designation listed in this document will be published subsequently in the Order.

    Regulatory Notices and Analyses

    The FAA has determined that this proposed 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. 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

    In consideration of the foregoing, 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 7400.11A, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2016, and effective September 15, 2016, is amended as follows: Section 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward From 700 Feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth. AGL SD E5 Wessington Springs, SD [New] Wessington Springs Airport, SD (Lat. 44°03′43″ N., long. 098°31′56″ W.)

    That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.5-mile radius of Wessington Springs Airport.

    Issued in Fort Worth, TX, on November 3, 2016. Walter Tweedy, Acting Manager, Operations Support Group, ATO Central Service Center.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27438 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2016-9286; Airspace Docket No. 16-ANM-13] Proposed Establishment of Class E Airspace, Denver, CO AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

    SUMMARY:

    This action proposes to establish Class E en route airspace extending upward from 1,200 feet above the surface to accommodate Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) aircraft under control of the Denver Air Route Traffic Control Center (ARTCC), Denver, CO. Establishment of this airspace area would ensure controlled airspace exists in those areas where the Federal airway structure is inadequate.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before January 3, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Send comments on this proposal to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590; telephone: 1-800-647-5527, or (202) 366-9826. You must identify FAA Docket No. FAA-2016-9286; Airspace Docket No. 16-ANM-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 7400.11A, 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 7400.11A at NARA, call 202-741-6030, or go to http://www.archives.gov/federal_register/code_of_federal-regulations/ibr_locations.html.

    FAA Order 7400.11, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, is published yearly and effective on September 15.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Tom Clark, Federal Aviation Administration, Operations Support Group, Western Service Center, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA 98057; telephone (425) 203-4511.

    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 en route airspace at Denver Air Route Traffic Control Center, Denver, CO.

    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. Persons 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-2016-9286/Airspace Docket No. 16-ANM-13.” The postcard will be date/time stamped and returned to the commenter.

    All communications received before the specified closing date for comments will be considered before taking action on the proposed rule. The proposal contained in this notice may be changed in light of the comments received. A report summarizing each substantive public contact with FAA personnel concerned with this rulemaking will be filed in the docket.

    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/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 7400.11A, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2016, and effective September 15, 2016. FAA Order 7400.11A is publicly available as listed in the ADDRESSES section of this document. FAA Order 7400.11A lists Class A, B, C, D, and E airspace areas, air traffic service routes, and reporting points.

    Background

    Current airspace design is primarily based on airport terminal areas and airways, often leaving small areas of uncontrolled airspace between airports. Class E en route domestic airspace provides controlled airspace in those areas where there is a requirement to provide IFR en route air traffic control services but the Federal airway structure is inadequate.

    Numerous smaller Class E en route areas have been established to provide controlled airspace where the airway structure is inadequate; however, additional areas of uncontrolled airspace have been discovered due to technological improvements in locating and mapping. Also, as aging ground-based navigation aids are removed from service, the airway structure is reduced, uncovering larger areas of uncontrolled airspace.

    The Proposal

    The FAA is proposing an amendment to Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) Part 71 to establish Class E en route airspace extending upward from 1,200 feet above the surface at the Denver ARTCC, Denver, CO, to support en route IFR operations where the airway structure is inadequate. This proposal would allow the most efficient routing between airports without reducing margins of safety or requiring additional coordination and pilot/controller workload. This action is necessary to ensure the safety and management of controlled airspace within the National Airspace System as it transitions from ground based navigation aids to satellite-based Global Navigation Satellite System for navigation.

    Class E airspace designations are published in paragraph 6006 of FAA Order 7400.11A, dated August 3, 2016, and effective September 15, 2016, 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 7400.11A, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2016, and effective September 15, 2016, is amended as follows:

    Paragraph 6006 Class E En Route Domestic Airspace Areas. ANM CO E6 Denver, CO [New]

    That airspace extending upward from 1,200 feet above the surface within an area bounded by lat. 44°57′30″ N., long. 103°10′00″ W.; to lat. 44°42′00″ N., long 101°29′00″ W.; to lat. 43°42′30″ N., long. 101°24′30″ W.; to lat. 43°17′20″ N., long. 100°06′00″ W.; to lat. 42°00′00″ N., long. 099°01′00″ W.; to lat. 39°59′00″ N., long. 099°03′30″ W.; to lat. 39°28′00″ N., long. 098°48′00″ W.; to lat. 37°30′00″ N., long. 102°33′00″ W.; to lat. 36°43′00″ N., long. 105°00′00″ W.; to lat. 36°43′00″ N., long. 106°05′00″ W.; to lat. 36°12′00″ N., long. 107°28′00″ W.; to lat. 36°02′00″ N., long. 108°13′00″ W.; to lat. 35°42′00″ N., long. 110°14′00″ W.; to lat. 35°46′00″ N., long. 111°50′30″ W.; to lat. 36°25′15″ N., long. 111°30′15″ W.; to lat. 36°44′00″ N., long. 111°36′30″ W.; to lat. 37°24′45″ N., long. 111°52′45″ W.; to lat. 37°50′00″ N., long. 110°53′00″ W.; to lat. 38°07′45″ N., long. 110°09′25″ W.; to lat. 38°12′00″ N., long. 109°59′00″ W.; to lat. 38°56′00″ N., long. 109°59′00″ W.; to lat. 39°13′00″ N., long. 109°59′00″ W.; to lat. 39°35′00″ N., long. 110°18′00″ W.; to lat. 40°00′00″ N., long. 109°10′00″ W.; to lat. 40°51′00″ N., long. 109°06′00″ W.; to lat. 41°22′00″ N., long. 108°16′30″ W.; to lat. 41°36′30″ N., long. 108°00′00″ W.; to lat. 42°25′00″ N., long. 107°03′00″ W.; to lat. 43°53′00″ N., long. 107°17′00″ W.; to lat. 44°19′00″ N., long. 106°16′00″ W.; to lat. 45°14′15″ N., long. 106°00′00″ W.; to lat. 45°07′00″ N., long. 104°15′00″ W.; thence to the point of beginning.

    Issued in Seattle, Washington, on November 2, 2016. Tracey Johnson, Manager, Operations Support Group, Western Service Center.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27437 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 165 [Docket Number USCG-2015-1061] RIN 1625-AA00 Safety Zone; Vigor Industrial Drydock Movement, West Duwamish Waterway; Seattle, WA AGENCY:

    Coast Guard, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking.

    SUMMARY:

    The Coast Guard proposes to establish a safety zone in the West Duwamish Waterway in Seattle, Washington for scheduled drydock movements at Vigor Industrial. The safety zone is necessary to ensure the safety of the maritime public and workers involved in the drydock movements. The safety zone would prohibit any person or vessel from entering or remaining in the safety zone when a notice of enforcement is issued, unless authorized by the Captain of the Port or a Designated Representative. We invite your comments on this proposed rulemaking.

    DATES:

    Comments and related material must be received by the Coast Guard on or before January 17, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments identified by docket number USCG-2015-1061 using the Federal eRulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov. See the “Public Participation and Request for Comments” portion of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section for further instructions on submitting comments.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    If you have questions about this proposed rulemaking, call or email Lieutenant Commander Christina Sullivan, Waterways Management Division, Sector Puget Sound, U.S. Coast Guard; telephone (206) 217-6051, email [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    I. Table of Abbreviations CFR Code of Federal Regulations DHS Department of Homeland Security FR Federal Register NPRM Notice of proposed rulemaking §  Section U.S.C. United States Code II. Background, Purpose, and Legal Basis

    The Coast Guard periodically receives notification from Vigor Industrial regarding their scheduled drydock movements in the West Duwamish Waterway, and has established temporary safety zones to ensure the safety of the maritime public during Vigor Industrial's operations. The Coast Guard published a temporary safety zone; Vigor Industrial Ferry Construction, West Duwamish Waterway, Seattle, WA on September 9, 2014 (79 FR 53297).

    Due to the dangers involved with a large, slow moving drydock that will be maneuvering close to the shore, the Coast Guard proposes the establishment of a short term safety zone that is activated on a notice of enforcement to ensure the safety of the workers involved as well as the maritime public during Vigor Industrial's operations.

    The Coast Guard proposes this rulemaking under authority in 33 U.S.C. 1231. Coast Guard Captains of the Port are granted authority to establish safety and security zones in 33 CFR 1.05-1(f) for safety and environmental purposes as described in 33 CFR part 165.

    Vigor Industrial periodically conducts drydock movements in support of its vessel launching operations in the West Duwamish Waterway in Seattle, Washington. The Coast Guard proposes to establish a safety zone to ensure the safety of the workers involved as well as the maritime public during Vigor Industrial's operations, and would do so by prohibiting any person or vessel from entering or remaining in the safety zone unless authorized by the Captain of the Port (COTP) or a Designated Representative.

    III. Discussion of Proposed Rule

    The Coast Guard is establishing a safety zone encompassing all waters in a rectangle approximately 450-yards-by-500-yards at the mouth of the West Duwamish Waterway as it empties into Elliot Bay in Seattle, Washington. The safety zone is adjacent to the northeastern tip of Harbor Island in Seattle, WA.

    To request permission to enter the zone during the times set out by the notice of enforcement contact the Joint Harbor Operations Center at 206-217-6001 or the Vessel Traffic Service Puget Sound on VHF Channel 14. If permission for entry is granted vessels would be required proceed at a minimum speed for navigation.

    IV. Regulatory Analyses

    We developed this proposed rule after considering numerous statutes and executive orders (E.O.s) related to rulemaking. Below we summarize our analyses based on a number of these statutes and E.O.s, and we discuss First Amendment rights of protestors.

    A. Regulatory Planning and Review

    E.O.s 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 NPRM has not been designated a “significant regulatory action,” under E.O. 12866. Accordingly, the NPRM has not been reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget.

    This regulatory action determination is based on the size, location, and duration of the safety zone. This safety zone would impact a small designated area of the West Duwamish Waterway for less than 6 hours per occurrence. From 2005 through 2015, there were a total of 10 instances in which the Coast Guard issued a safety zone for the movement of the Vigor Dry Dock. Moreover, the Coast Guard would issue a Broadcast Notice to Mariners via VHF-FM marine channel 16 about the zone, and the rule would allow vessels to seek permission to enter the zone.

    B. Impact on Small Entities

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980, 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 proposed rule would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

    While some owners or operators of vessels intending to transit the safety zone may be small entities, for the reasons stated in section IV.A above this proposed rule would not have a significant economic impact on any vessel owner or operator.

    If you think that your business, organization, or governmental jurisdiction qualifies as a small entity and that this rule would have a significant economic impact on it, please submit a comment (see ADDRESSES) explaining why you think it qualifies and how and to what degree this rule would economically affect it.

    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 proposed 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. The Coast Guard will not retaliate against small entities that question or complain about this proposed rule or any policy or action of the Coast Guard.

    C. Collection of Information

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

    D. Federalism and Indian Tribal Governments

    A rule has implications for federalism under E.O. 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 proposed rule under that Order and have determined that it is consistent with the fundamental federalism principles and preemption requirements described in E.O. 13132.

    This proposed rule was determined to have potential tribal implications under Executive Order 13175, Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments, because it would impact vessel traffic in the West Duwamish Waterway. The Coast Guard consulted with the Muckleshoot tribe on this notice of proposed rulemaking. In order to reach an agreeable timeframe that avoids impacts to treaty fishing activities, the Coast Guard will consult with the Muckleshoot tribe and Vigor Industrial once it receives notification from Vigor Industrial concerning drydock movements that require the enforcement of the safety zone. If agreement is not reached, the Coast Guard, as a Federal trustee, will conduct consultation with the Muckleshoot tribe to ensure Vigor movements will avoid Treaty impacts.

    If you believe this proposed rule has additional 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 proposed rule would not result in such an expenditure, we do discuss the effects of this rule elsewhere in this preamble.

    F. Environment

    We have analyzed this proposed rule under Department of Homeland Security Management Directive 023-01 and Commandant Instruction M16475.lD, which guide the Coast Guard in complying with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA)(42 U.S.C. 4321-4370f), and have made a preliminary determination 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 proposed rule involves the establishment of a safety zone to ensure the safety of the maritime public. Normally such actions are categorically excluded from further review under paragraph 34(g) of Figure 2-1 of the Commandant Instruction. A preliminary 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 proposed 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.

    V. Public Participation and Request for Comments

    We view public participation as essential to effective rulemaking, and will consider all comments and material received during the comment period. Your comment can help shape the outcome of this rulemaking. If you submit a comment, please include the docket number for this rulemaking, indicate the specific section of this document to which each comment applies, and provide a reason for each suggestion or recommendation.

    We encourage you to submit comments through the Federal eRulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov. If your material cannot be submitted using http://www.regulations.gov, contact the person in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this document for alternate instructions.

    We accept anonymous comments. All comments received will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov and will include any personal information you have provided. For more about privacy and the docket, you may review a Privacy Act notice regarding the Federal Docket Management System in the March 24, 2005, issue of the Federal Register (70 FR 15086).

    Documents mentioned in this NPRM as being available in the docket, and all public comments, will be in our online docket at http://www.regulations.gov and can be viewed by following that Web site's instructions. Additionally, if you go to the online docket and sign up for email alerts, you will be notified when comments are posted or a final rule is published.

    List of Subjects in 33 CFR Part 165

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

    For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Coast Guard proposes to amend 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. 1226, 1231; 46 U.S.C. Chapter 701, 3306, 3703; 50 U.S.C. 191, 195; 33 CFR 1.05-1, 6.04-1, 6.04-6, 160.5; Pub. L. 107-295, 116 Stat. 2064; Department of Homeland Security Delegation No. 0170.1.

    2. Add § 165.1340 to read as follows:
    § 165.1340 Safety Zone; Vigor Industrial Drydock Movement, West Duwamish Waterway; Seattle, WA.

    (a) Location. The following area is a safety zone: All waters of the West Duwamish Waterway in Seattle, WA encompassed within the area created by connecting the following points: 47°35′04″ N., 122°21′30″ W. thence westerly to 47°35′04″ N., 122°21′50″ W. thence northerly to 47°35′19″ N., 122°21′50″ W. thence easterly to 47°35′19″ N., 122°21′30″ W. thence southerly to 47°35′04″ N., 122°21′30″ W.

    (b) Regulations. (1) In accordance with the general regulations in subpart C of this part, when a notice of enforcement has been issued, no person may enter or remain in the safety zone created by this section unless authorized by the Captain of the Port or a Designated Representative. See subpart C of this part for additional safety zone information and requirements. Vessel operators wishing to enter the zone during the enforcement period must request permission for entry by contacting the Joint Harbor Operation Center at 206-217-6001 or the Vessel Traffic Service Puget Sound on VHF channel 14.

    (2) In order to reach an agreeable timeframe that avoids impacts to treaty fishing activities, the Coast Guard will consult with the Muckleshoot tribe and Vigor Industrial once it receives notification from Vigor Industrial concerning drydock movements that require the enforcement of the safety zone. If agreement is not reached, the Coast Guard, as a Federal trustee, will conduct consultation with the Muckleshoot tribe to ensure Vigor movements will avoid Treaty impacts.

    (c) Enforcement periods. The safety zone described in paragraph (a) of this section will be enforced by the Captain of the Port only upon notice. Notice of enforcement by the Captain of the Port will be provided prior to execution of the drydock movement by all appropriate means, in accordance with 33 CFR 165.7(a). Such means will include issuance of a notice of enforcement to be published in the Federal Register, Local Notice to Mariners, and Special Marine Information Broadcast.

    Dated: November 8, 2016. M.W. Raymond, Captain, U.S. Coast Guard, Captain of the Port Puget Sound.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27494 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-04-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 372 [EPA-HQ-TRI-2016-0222; FRL-9951-01] RIN 2070-AK15 Addition of Nonylphenol Ethoxylates Category; Community Right-To-Know Toxic Chemical Release Reporting AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    EPA is proposing to add a nonylphenol ethoxylates (NPEs) category to the list of toxic chemicals subject to reporting under section 313 of the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) and section 6607 of the Pollution Prevention Act (PPA). EPA is proposing to add this chemical category to the EPCRA section 313 list because EPA believes NPEs meet the EPCRA section 313(d)(2)(C) toxicity criteria. Specifically, EPA believes that longer chain NPEs can break down in the environment to short-chain NPEs and nonylphenol, both of which are highly toxic to aquatic organisms. Based on a review of the available production and use information, members of the NPEs category are expected to be manufactured, processed, or otherwise used in quantities that would exceed EPCRA section 313 reporting thresholds.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before January 17, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-TRI-2016-0222, by one of the following methods:

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

    Mail: Document Control Office (7407M), Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics (OPPT), Environmental Protection Agency, 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/where-send-comments-epa-dockets#hq.

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

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For technical information contact: Daniel R. Bushman, Toxics Release Inventory Program Division (7410M), Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001; telephone number: (202) 566-0743; email: [email protected]

    For general information contact: The Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Hotline; telephone numbers: toll free at (800) 424-9346 (select menu option 3) or (703) 412-9810 in the Washington, DC Area and International; or toll free, TDD (800) 553-7672; or go to http://www.epa.gov/superfund/contacts/infocenter/.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    I. General Information A. Does this notice apply to me?

    You may be potentially affected by this action if you manufacture, process, or otherwise use NPEs. 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:

    • Facilities included in the following NAICS manufacturing codes (corresponding to Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) codes 20 through 39): 311 *, 312 *, 313 *, 314 *, 315 *, 316, 321, 322, 323 *, 324, 325 *, 326 *, 327, 331, 332, 333, 334 *, 335 *, 336, 337 *, 339 *, 111998 *, 211112 *, 212324 *, 212325 *, 212393 *, 212399 *, 488390 *, 511110, 511120, 511130, 511140 *, 511191, 511199, 512220, 512230 *, 519130 *, 541712 *, or 811490 *.

    * Exceptions and/or limitations exist for these NAICS codes.

    • Facilities included in the following NAICS codes (corresponding to SIC codes other than SIC codes 20 through 39): 212111, 212112, 212113 (corresponds to SIC code 12, Coal Mining (except 1241)); or 212221, 212222, 212231, 212234, 212299 (corresponds to SIC code 10, Metal Mining (except 1011, 1081, and 1094)); or 221111, 221112, 221113, 221118, 221121, 221122, 221330 (Limited to facilities that combust coal and/or oil for the purpose of generating power for distribution in commerce) (corresponds to SIC codes 4911, 4931, and 4939, Electric Utilities); or 424690, 425110, 425120 (Limited to facilities previously classified in SIC code 5169, Chemicals and Allied Products, Not Elsewhere Classified); or 424710 (corresponds to SIC code 5171, Petroleum Bulk Terminals and Plants); or 562112 (Limited to facilities primarily engaged in solvent recovery services on a contract or fee basis (previously classified under SIC code 7389, Business Services, NEC)); or 562211, 562212, 562213, 562219, 562920 (Limited to facilities regulated under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, subtitle C, 42 U.S.C. 6921 et seq.) (corresponds to SIC code 4953, Refuse Systems).

    • Federal facilities.

    To determine whether your facility would be affected by this action, you should carefully examine the applicability criteria in part 372, subpart B of Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations. If you have questions regarding the applicability of this action to a particular entity, consult the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

    B. What action is the agency taking?

    EPA is proposing to add a NPEs category to the list of toxic chemicals subject to reporting under EPCRA section 313 and PPA section 6607. As discussed in more detail later in this document, EPA is proposing to add this chemical category to the EPCRA section 313 list because EPA believes NPEs meet the EPCRA section 313(d)(2)(C) toxicity criteria.

    C. What is the agency's authority for taking this action?

    This action is issued under EPCRA sections 313(d) and 328, 42 U.S.C. 11023 et seq., and PPA section 6607, 42 U.S.C. 13106. EPCRA is also referred to as Title III of the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act of 1986.

    Section 313 of EPCRA, 42 U.S.C. 11023, requires certain facilities that manufacture, process, or otherwise use listed toxic chemicals in amounts above reporting threshold levels to report their environmental releases and other waste management quantities of such chemicals annually. These facilities must also report pollution prevention and recycling data for such chemicals, pursuant to section 6607 of the PPA, 42 U.S.C. 13106. Congress established an initial list of toxic chemicals that was comprised of 308 individually listed chemicals and 20 chemical categories.

    EPCRA section 313(d) authorizes EPA to add or delete chemicals from the list and sets criteria for these actions. EPCRA section 313(d)(2) states that EPA may add a chemical to the list if any of the listing criteria in EPCRA section 313(d)(2) are met. Therefore, to add a chemical, EPA must demonstrate that at least one criterion is met, but need not determine whether any other criterion is met. Conversely, to remove a chemical from the list, EPCRA section 313(d)(3) dictates that EPA must demonstrate that none of the criteria in ECPRA section 313(d)(2) are met. The listing criteria in EPCRA section 313(d)(2)(A)-(C) are as follows:

    • The chemical is known to cause or can reasonably be anticipated to cause significant adverse acute human health effects at concentration levels that are reasonably likely to exist beyond facility site boundaries as a result of continuous, or frequently recurring, releases.

    • The chemical is known to cause or can reasonably be anticipated to cause in humans: Cancer or teratogenic effects, or serious or irreversible reproductive dysfunctions, neurological disorders, heritable genetic mutations, or other chronic health effects.

    • The chemical is known to cause or can be reasonably anticipated to cause, because of its toxicity, its toxicity and persistence in the environment, or its toxicity and tendency to bioaccumulate in the environment, a significant adverse effect on the environment of sufficient seriousness, in the judgment of the Administrator, to warrant reporting under this section.

    EPA often refers to the EPCRA section 313(d)(2)(A) criterion as the “acute human health effects criterion;” the EPCRA section 313(d)(2)(B) criterion as the “chronic human health effects criterion;” and the EPCRA section 313(d)(2)(C) criterion as the “environmental effects criterion.”

    EPA published in the Federal Register of November 30, 1994 (59 FR 61432) (FRL-4922-2), a statement clarifying its interpretation of the EPCRA section 313(d)(2) and (d)(3) criteria for modifying the EPCRA section 313 list of toxic chemicals.

    II. Background Information A. What are NPEs?

    NPEs are nonionic surfactants containing a branched nine-carbon alkyl chain bound to phenol and a chain of repeating ethoxylate units (C9H19C6H4(OCH2CH2)nOH). The number of repeating ethoxylate units (n) can range from 1 to 100 (Reference (Ref.) 1). The major positional isomer is para (≥90%), while the ortho isomer is typically less than 10% (Ref. 2). The number of ethoxylate units can be designated as NP#EO where # indicates the number of ethoxylate groups. For example, nonylphenol monoethoxylate would be NP1EO and nonylphenol diethoxylate would be NP2EO. Alternatively, NPE-# can be used where # indicates the number of ethoxylate groups. The surfactant properties of NPEs have resulted in their widespread industrial and commercial use in adhesives, wetting agents, emulsifiers, stabilizers, dispersants, defoamers, cleaners, paints, and coatings (Refs. 1, 3, 4, 5, and 6). The widespread use of NPEs surfactants has resulted in their release to surface waters (Ref. 4).

    B. How does EPA propose to list NPEs?

    EPA is proposing to list NPEs as a category that would include the thirteen NPEs that currently appear on the Toxic Substances Control Act inventory (https://www.epa.gov/tsca-inventory). The NPEs category would be defined as Nonylphenol Ethoxylates and would only include those chemicals covered by the following Chemical Abstracts Service Registry Numbers (CASRNs):

    7311-27-5; Ethanol, 2-[2-[2-[2-(4-nonylphenoxy)ethoxy]ethoxy]ethoxy]-

    9016-45-9; Poly(oxy-1,2-ethanediyl), α-(nonylphenyl)-ω-hydroxy-

    20427-84-3; Ethanol, 2-[2-(4-nonylphenoxy)ethoxy]-

    26027-38-3; Poly(oxy-1,2-ethanediyl), α-(4-nonylphenyl)-ω-hydroxy-

    26571-11-9; 3,6,9,12,15,18,21,24-Octaoxahexacosan-1-ol, 26-(nonylphenoxy)-

    27176-93-8; Ethanol, 2-[2-(nonylphenoxy)ethoxy]-

    27177-05-5; 3,6,9,12,15,18,21-Heptaoxatricosan-1-ol, 23-(nonylphenoxy)-

    27177-08-8; 3,6,9,12,15,18,21,24,27-Nonaoxanonacosan-1-ol, 29-(nonylphenoxy)-

    27986-36-3; Ethanol, 2-(nonylphenoxy)-

    37205-87-1; Poly(oxy-1,2-ethanediyl), α-(isononylphenyl)-ω-hydroxy-

    51938-25-1; Poly(oxy-1,2-ethanediyl), α-(2-nonylphenyl)-ω-hydroxy-

    68412-54-4; Poly(oxy-1,2-ethanediyl), α-(nonylphenyl)-ω-hydroxy-, branched

    127087-87-0; Poly(oxy-1,2-ethanediyl), α-(4-nonylphenyl)-ω-hydroxy-, branched

    III. What is EPA's evaluation of the ecological toxicity and environmental fate of NPEs?

    EPA prepared two technical documents to support the listing of the NPEs category. The first document is “Chemistry and Environmental Fate of ol Ethoxylates (NPEs)” (Ref. 7), which provides detailed information on the chemistry and environmental fate of NPEs. The second document is “Ecological Hazard Assessment for Nonylphenol Monoethoxylate (NP1EO) and Nonylphenol Diethoxylate (NP2EO)” (Ref. 8), which provides an assessment of the ecological toxicity of short-chain NPEs. Unit III.A. provides a brief summary of the chemistry and environmental fate of NPEs and Unit III.B. provides a brief summary of the ecological toxicity of short-chain NPEs. Readers should consult the support documents (Refs. 7 and 8) for further information.

    A. What is the environmental fate of nonylphenol ethoxylates?

    In the environment, NPEs (in particular, those containing long ethoxylate chains) are expected to have very low volatility based on Henry's law constant values of <9.8 × 10−7 atmospheres-cubic meter per mole (atm-m3/mol) (Ref. 9). However, the vapor pressures of some of the degradation products of long-chain NPEs (e.g., nonylphenol, NP1EO) indicate the potential to exist in the atmosphere in the vapor phase. Although nonylphenol itself is somewhat volatile, volatilization of most NPEs from soil and water surfaces is not expected to be a significant environmental transport process. The potential for adsorption of NPEs to organic carbon in soil and to suspended solids and sediment in water is expected to increase with decreasing ethoxylation as water solubilities decrease (Ref. 9). In general, partitioning to soils and sediments is expected to be significant based on carbon-normalization partition coefficient (log Koc) values of 4.87-5.46 for NP1EO, NP2EO, and NP3EO and 3.61-4.63 for NP9EO, which indicate a potential for strong adsorption to suspended solids and sediments in water and to organic matter in soils (Ref. 9). The highly water-soluble, higher molecular weight (i.e., longer chain) NPEs are expected to adsorb less to organic carbon, and may therefore have some mobility in soil (Refs. 9 and 10).

    Biodegradation is the dominant fate process for NPEs in the environment; abiotic degradation processes such as hydrolysis are not expected to be significant (Ref. 9). The available data indicate that NPEs undergo rapid primary biodegradation but slow ultimate biodegradation (Refs. 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, and 19). Half-lives ranging from 2 to 57.8 days have been determined for these substances based on river water die-away studies, which report primary degradation (Ref. 13). Anaerobic biodegradation appears to proceed more slowly than aerobic biodegradation (Ref. 13). Nonylphenol ethoxylate biodegradation products include shorter chain NPEs and ethoxycarboxylates. (Refs. 9, 10, and 20). Nonylphenol ethoxycarboxylates are NPEs that terminate with a carboxylate group (-CO2H) rather than an alcohol group (-OH). Although not commonly observed under aerobic conditions, nonylphenol is a major metabolite of NPEs under anaerobic conditions (Refs. 9, 10, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, and 27).

    Well-designed and properly functioning wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) can greatly reduce effluent concentrations of NPEs and their degradation products relative to those found in the influent (Ref. 28). However, treatment efficiency varies considerably for WWTPs depending on plant design and operating conditions (Refs. 10, 29, 30, 31, and 32). WWTP effluent remains a significant source of NPEs, nonylphenol ethoxycarboxylates, and nonylphenol in the environment, and concentrations of these compounds in surface waters, sediments, and wildlife tend to be higher near WWTP outfalls (Refs. 10, 31, 33, 34, 35, 36, and 37).

    Nonylphenol ethoxylates and the degradation products, nonylphenol ethoxycarboxylates and nonylphenol, are widely distributed in surface waters, including rivers, lakes, estuaries, marine ecosystems, and their underlying sediments (Refs. 10, 31, 33, 34, 35, 38, 39, 40, and 41). The more hydrophobic of these compounds, such as nonylphenol, NP1EO, and NP2EO, tend to partition to sediments (Ref. 10). Because sediments are often anaerobic, sorbed nonylphenol ethoxylates and their degradation products undergo further biodegradation slowly, ultimately producing nonylphenol. Through a combination of strong sorption and slow biodegradation, NPEs and nonylphenol can accumulate in sediments in concentrations that are much higher than are found in the surrounding water (Refs. 10 and 37) and can persist for years (Ref. 42).

    B. What is the ecological toxicity of short-chain NPEs?

    For NPEs, aquatic toxicity generally decreases as the length of the ethoxylate chain increases (Refs. 43 and 44). The available data show that NP1EO and NP2EO are significantly more toxic to aquatic organisms than the longer chain ethoxylates (e.g., NP9EO). Experimental data on acute aquatic toxicity of NP1EO indicate 96-hour LC50 values (i.e., the concentration that is lethal to 50% of test organisms) as low as 218 μg/L in the fathead minnow (Pimphales promelas) (Ref. 45). The 48-hour LC50 for the water flea, (Daphnia magna) and NP2EO was as low as 148 μg/L (Ref. 46). Longer term exposures to NP1EO resulted in a Maximum-Acceptable-Toxicant-Concentration (MATC) of 61 µg/L based on an increase of mixed secondary sex characteristics for the Japanese medaka (Oryzias latipes) (Ref. 47). Exposure of rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) to NP2EO indicated a 22-day Lowest-Observed-Effect-Concentration (LOEC) for growth inhibition of 1 µg/L (Ref. 48). Gonadosomatic Index (GSI) (weight of testes expressed as a percentage of total body weight) in rainbow trout also decreased relative to controls with a 21-day LOEC of 38 µg/L for NP2EO (Ref. 49). Additional toxicity values are included in the ecological hazard assessment (Ref. 8).

    The available experimental data demonstrate that NP1EO and NP2EO have been shown to cause acute and chronic toxicity to aquatic organisms at very low concentrations (Ref. 8). They have been shown to reduce individual survival, growth, and reproduction in aquatic organisms and NP2EO has been shown to reduce testicular growth and GSI in fish. The concentrations at which toxicity is observed are well below 1 mg/L and as low as 148 μg/L for acute effects and less than 0.1 mg/L for chronic effects. Acute and chronic toxicity values at these low concentrations show that NP1EO and NP2EO are highly toxic to aquatic organisms.

    IV. Rationale for Listing NPEs

    The NPEs category that EPA is proposing to add to the EPCRA section 313 toxic chemical list, contains both short and long-chain NPEs. Short-chain NPEs are highly toxic to aquatic organisms with toxicity values well below 1 mg/L as described in Unit III. Therefore, EPA believes that the evidence is sufficient for listing short-chain NPEs on the EPCRA section 313 toxic chemical list pursuant to EPCRA section 313(d)(2)(C) based on the available ecological toxicity data. Long-chain NPEs, while not as toxic as short-chain NPEs, degrade in the environment to produce products that include highly toxic short-chain NPEs and nonylphenol. Nonylphenol is even more toxic to aquatic organisms than short-chain NPEs and was added to the EPCRA section 313 toxic chemical list based on its toxicity to aquatic organisms (79 FR 58686, FRL-9915-59-OEI, September 30, 2014). As a source of degradation products that are highly toxic to aquatic organisms, EPA believes that the evidence is sufficient for listing long-chain NPEs on the EPCRA section 313 toxic chemical list pursuant to EPCRA section 313(d)(2)(C) based on the available ecological toxicity and environmental fate data.

    EPA does not believe that it is appropriate to consider exposure for chemicals that are highly toxic based on a hazard assessment when determining if a chemical can be added for environmental effects pursuant to EPCRA section 313(d)(2)(C) (see 59 FR 61440-61442). Therefore, in accordance with EPA's standard policy on the use of exposure assessments (see November 30, 1994 (59 FR 61432) (FRL-4922-2)), EPA does not believe that an exposure assessment is necessary or appropriate for determining whether NPEs meet the criteria of EPCRA section 313(d)(2)(C).

    V. References

    The following is a listing of the documents that are specifically referenced in this document. The docket includes these documents and other information considered by EPA, including documents that are referenced within the documents that are included in the docket, even if the referenced document is not itself physically located in the docket. For assistance in locating these other documents, please consult the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

    1. Dow Chemical. 2010. Product safety assessment. Nonylphenol ethoxylate surfactants. The Dow Chemical Company. October 11, 2010. 2. Naylor, C.G. 2004. The environmental safety of alkylphenol ethoxylates demonstrated by risk assessment and guidelines for their safe use. In: Handbook of detergents. Part B: Environmental impact. New York, NY: Marcel Dekker. p. 429-445. 3. Dow Chemical. 2002. Tergitol. Nonylphenol ethoxylate surfactants. Products and applications. Dow Chemical Company, Midland, MI. 4. USEPA. 2009. Testing of certain nonylphenol and nonylphenol ethoxylate substances. Federal Register 74(115):28654-28262. 5. USEPA. 2010. Poly(oxy-1,2-ethanediyl),-alpha. (nonylphenyl)-.omega.-hydroxy-. IUR (Inventory Update Reporting) data. Non-confidential 2006 IUR records by chemical, including manufacturing, processing and use information. 6. USEPA. 2010. Nonylphenol (NP) and Nonylphenol Ethoxylates (NPEs) Action Plan. RIN 2070eZA09. 7. USEPA, OPPT. Chemistry and Environmental Fate of Nonylphenol Ethoxylates (NPEs). May 10, 2016. 8. USEPA, OPPT. Ecological Hazard Assessment for Nonylphenol Monoethoxylate (NP1EO) and Nonylphenol Diethoxylate (NP2EO). May 5, 2016. 9. Staples, C.A., G.M. Klecka, C.G. Naylor, and B.S. Losey. 2008. C8- and C9-alkylphenols and ethoxylates: 1. Identity, physical characterization, and biodegradation pathways analysis. Hum. Ecol. Risk Assess. 14(5):1007-1024. 10. Ying, G.G., B. Williams, and R. Kookana. 2002. Environmental fate of alkylphenols and alkylphenol ethoxylates: a review. Environ. Int. 28:215-226. 11. Ahel, M., D. Hršak, and W. Giger. 1994. Aerobic transformation of short-chain alkylphenol polyethoxylates by mixed bacterial cultures. Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 26:540-548. 12. Jurado, E., M. Fernández-Serrano, J. Núñez-Olea, and M. Lechuga. 2009. Aerobic biodegradation of a nonylphenol polyethoxylate and toxicity of the biodegradation metabolites. Bull. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 83:307-312. 13. Klecka, G.M., C.A. Staples, C.G. Naylor, K.B. Woodburn, and B.S. Losey. 2008. C8- and C9-Alkylphenols and ethoxylates: II. Assessment of environmental persistence and bioaccumulation potential. Hum. Ecol. Risk Assess. 14(5):1025-1055. 14. Kveštak, R., and M. Ahel. 1995. Biotransformation of nonylphenol polyethoxylate surfactants by estuarine mixed bacterial cultures. Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 29:551-556. 15. Maki, H., M. Fujita, and Y. Fujiwara. 1996. Identification of final biodegradation product of nonylphenol ethoxylate (NPE) by river microbial consortia. Bull. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 57:881-887. 16. Manzano, M.A., J.A. Perales, D. Sales, and J.M. Quiroga. 1999. The effect of temperature on the biodegradation of a nonylphenol polyethoxylate in river water. Water Res. 33(11):2593-2600. 17. Potter, T. L., K. Simmons, J. Wu, M. Sanchez-Olvera, P. Kostecki, and E. Calabrese. 1999. Static die-away of a nonylphenol ethoxylate surfactant in estuarine water samples. Environ. Sci. Technol. 33:113-118. 18. Quiroga, J.M., M.A. Manzano, D. Sales, and J.A. Perales. 1996. Biodegradation of a nonyfenol polyethoxilate (NPEO) in river water. Barcelona, Spain: World Surfactant Congress, 4th. p. 417-425. 19. Staples, C.A., C.G. Naylor, J.B. Williams, and W.E. Gledhill. 2001. Ultimate biodegradation of alkylphenol ethoxylate surfactants and their biodegradation intermediates. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 20(11):2450-2455. 20. Gu, X., Y. Zhang, J. Zhang, M. Yang, H. Tamaki, Y. Kamagata, and D. Li. 2010. Isolation of phylogenetically diverse nonylphenol ethoxylate-degrading bacteria and characterization of their corresponding biotransformation pathways. Chemosphere 80:216-222. 21. Lu, J., Q. Jin, Y. He, and J. Wu. 2007. Biodegradation of nonylphenol polyethoxylates under Fe(III)-reducing conditions. Chemosphere 69:1047-1054. 22. Lu, J., Q. Jin, Y. He, J. Wu, W. Zhang, and J. Zhao. 2008. Anaerobic degradation behavior of nonylphenol polyethoxylates in sludge. Chemosphere 71:345-351. 23. Patureau, D., N. Delgenes, and J.P. Delgenes. 2008. Impact of sewage sludge treatment processes on the removal of the endocrine disrupters nonylphenol ethoxylates. Chemosphere 72:586-591. 24. Luppi, L.I., I. Hardmeier, P.A. Babay, R.F. Itria, and L. Erijman. 2007. Anaerobic nonylphenol ethoxylate degradation coupled to nitrate reduction in a modified biodegradability batch test. Chemosphere 68:2136-2143. 25. Chang, B.V., C.H. Yu, and S.Y. Yuan. 2004. Degradation of nonylphenol by anaerobic microorganisms from river sediment. Chemosphere 55:493-500. 26. Ejlertsson, J., M.L. Nilsson, H. Kylin, A. Bergman, L. Karlson, M. Oquist, and B.H. Svensson. 1999. Anaerobic degradation of nonylphenol mono- and diethoxylates in digestor sludge, landfilled municipal solid waste, and landfilled sludge. Environ. Sci. Technol. 33(2):301-306. 27. Giger, W., P.H. Brunner, and C. Schaffner. 1984. 4-Nonylphenol in sewage sludge: accumulation of toxic metabolites from nonionic surfactants. Science 225:623-625. 28. Ying, G., and R.S. Kookana. 2003. Degradation of five selected endocrine-disrupting chemicals in seawater and marine sediment. Environ. Sci. Technol. 37(7):1256-1260. 29. Loyo-Rosales, J.E., C.P. Rice, and A. Torrents. 2007. Fate of octyl- and nonylphenol ethoxylates and some carboxylated derivatives in three American wastewater treatment plants. Environ. Sci. Technol. 41(19):6815-6821, Including supplemental information. 30. Ahel, M., W. Giger, and C. Schaffner. 1994. Behaviour of alkylphenol polyethoxylate surfactants in the aquatic environment—II. Occurrence and transformation in rivers. Water Res. 28:1142-1152. 31. Barber, L.B., B.K. Brown, and S.D. Zaugg. 2000. Potential endocrine disrupting organic chemicals in treated municipal wastewater and river water. In: Keith L.H., T.L. Jones-Lepp, and L.L. Needham, eds. Analysis of Environmental Endocrine Disruptors, ACS Symposium Series 747. American Chemical Society, Washington, DC USA. p. 97-123. 32. Shao, B., J. Hu, and M. Yang. 2003. Nonylphenol ethoxylates and their biodegradation intermediates in water and sludge of a sewage treatment plant. Bull. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 70:527-532. 33. Rice, C. P., I. Schmitz-Afonso, J.E. Lolyo-Rosales, E. Link, R. Thoma, L. Fay, Altfater, D., and M.J. Camp. 2003. Alkylphenol and alkylphenol-ethoxylates in carp, water, and sediment from the Cuyahoga River, Ohio. Environ. Sci. Technol. 37:3747-3754. 34. Bennett, E.R., and C.D. Metcalfe. 1998. Distribution of alkylphenol compounds in Great Lakes sediments, United States and Canada. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 17(7):1230-1235. 35. Bennett, E.R., and C.D. Metcalfe. 2000. Distribution of degradation products of alkylphenol ethoxylates near sewage treatment plants in the lower Great Lakes, North America. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 19(4):784-792. 36. Ferguson, P.L., C.R. Iden, and B.J. Brownawell. 2001. Distribution and fate of neutral alkylphenol ethoxylate metabolites in a sewage-impacted urban estuary. Environ. Sci. Technol. 35(12):2428-2435. 37. Ferguson, P.L., R.F. Bopp, S.N. Chillrud, R.D. Aller, and B.J. Brownawell. 2003. Biogeochemistry of nonylphenol ethoxylates in urban estuarine sediments. Environ. Sci. Technol. 37:3499-3506. 38. Bennie, D.T. 1999. Review of the environmental occurrence of alkylphenols and alkylphenol ethoxylates. Water Qual. Res. J. Canada 34:79-122. 39. Montgomery-Brown, J., and M. Reinhard. 2003. Occurrence and behavior of alkylphenol polyethoxylates in the environment. Environ. Eng. Sci. 20(5):471-486. 40. Naylor, C.G., J.P. Mieure, W.J. Adams, J.A. Weeks, and F.J. Castaidi. 1992. Alkylphenol ethoxylates in the environment. J. Am. Oil Chem. Soc. 69(7):695-703. 41. Kolpin, D.W., E.T. Furlong, M.T. Meyer, E.M. Thurman, S.D. Zaugg, L.B. Barber, and H.T. Buxton. 2002. Pharmaceuticals, hormones, and other organic wastewater contaminants in U.S. streams, 1999-2000: A national reconnaissance. Environ. Sci. Technol. 36(6):1202-1211. 42. Shang, D.Y., R.W. Macdonald, and M.G. Ikonmou. 1999. Persistence of nonylphenol ethoxylate surfactants and their primary degradation products in sediments from near a municipal outfall in the Strait of Georgia, British Columbia, Canada. Environ. Sci. Technol. 33:1366-1372. 43. Hall, W.S., M.B. Patoczka, R.J. Mirenda, B.A. Porter, and E. Miller. 1989. Acute toxicity of industrial surfactants to Mysidopsis bahia. Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 18: 765-772. 44. Servos, M.R. 1999. Review of the aquatic toxicity, estrogenic responses and bioaccumulation of alkylphenols and alkylphenol polyethoxylates. Water Qual. Res. J. Canada 34: 123-177. 45. TenEyck, M.C. and T.P. Markee. 2007. Toxicity of nonylphenol, nonylphenol monoethoxylate, and nonylphenol diethoxylate and mixtures of these compounds to Pimephales promelas (Fathead minnow) and Ceriodaphnia dubia. Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 53: 599-606. 46. Maki, H., H. Okamura, I. Aoyama, and M. Fujita. 1998. Halogenation and toxicity of the biodegradation products of a nonionic surfactant, nonylphenol ethoxylate. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 17: 650-654. 47. Balch, G., and C. Metcalfe. 2006. Developmental effects in Japanese medaka (Oryzias latipes) exposed to nonylphenol ethoxylates and their degradation products. Chemosphere 62: 1214-1223. 48. Ashfield, L.A., T.G. Pottinger, and J.P. Sumpter. 1998. Exposure of female juvenile rainbow trout to alkylphenolic compounds results in modifications to growth and ovosomatic index. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 17: 679-686. 49. Jobling, S., D. Sheahan, J.A. Osborne, P. Matthiessen, and J.P. Sumpter. 1996. Inhibition of testicular growth in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) exposed to estrogenic alkylphenolic chemicals. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 15: 194-202. 50. USEPA, OPPT. Economic Analysis of the Proposed Rule to Add Nonylphenol Ethoxylates to the EPCRA Section 313 List of Toxic Chemicals. April 12, 2016. VI. What are the Statutory and Executive Orders reviews associated with this action?

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

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

    This action is not a significant regulatory action and was therefore not submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review under Executive Orders 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and 13563 (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011).

    B. Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA)

    This action does not contain any new information collection requirements that require additional approval by OMB under the PRA, 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq. OMB has previously approved the information collection activities contained in the existing regulations and has assigned OMB control numbers 2025-0009 and 2050-0078. Currently, the facilities subject to the reporting requirements under EPCRA section 313 and PPA section 6607 may use either EPA Toxic Chemicals Release Inventory Form R (EPA Form 1B9350-1), or EPA Toxic Chemicals Release Inventory Form A (EPA Form 1B9350-2). The Form R must be completed if a facility manufactures, processes, or otherwise uses any listed chemical above threshold quantities and meets certain other criteria. For the Form A, EPA established an alternative threshold for facilities with low annual reportable amounts of a listed toxic chemical. A facility that meets the appropriate reporting thresholds, but estimates that the total annual reportable amount of the chemical does not exceed 500 pounds per year, can take advantage of an alternative manufacture, process, or otherwise use threshold of 1 million pounds per year of the chemical, provided that certain conditions are met, and submit the Form A instead of the Form R. In addition, respondents may designate the specific chemical identity of a substance as a trade secret pursuant to EPCRA section 322, 42 U.S.C. 11042, 40 CFR part 350.

    OMB has approved the reporting and recordkeeping requirements related to Forms A and R, supplier notification, and petitions under OMB Control number 2025-0009 (EPA Information Collection Request (ICR) No. 1363) and those related to trade secret designations under OMB Control 2050-0078 (EPA ICR No. 1428). As provided in 5 CFR 1320.5(b) and 1320.6(a), an Agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. The OMB control numbers relevant to EPA's regulations are listed in 40 CFR part 9 or 48 CFR chapter 15, and displayed on the information collection instruments (e.g., forms, instructions).

    C. Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA)

    I certify that this action will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the RFA, 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq. The small entities subject to the requirements of this action are small manufacturing facilities. The Agency has determined that of the 178 entities estimated to be impacted by this action, 161 are small businesses; no small governments or small organizations are expected to be affected by this action. All 161 small businesses affected by this action are estimated to incur annualized cost impacts of less than 1%. Thus, this action is not expected to have a significant adverse economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. A more detailed analysis of the impacts on small entities is located in EPA's economic analysis (Ref. 50).

    D. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA)

    This action does not contain an unfunded mandate of $100 million or more as described in UMRA, 2 U.S.C. 1531-1538, and does not significantly or uniquely affect small governments. This action is not subject to the requirements of UMRA because it contains no regulatory requirements that might significantly or uniquely affect small governments. EPA did not identify any small governments that would be impacted by this action. EPA's economic analysis indicates that the total cost of this action is estimated to be $619,627 in the first year of reporting (Ref. 50).

    E. Executive Order 13132: Federalism

    This action does not have federalism implications as specified in Executive Order 13132 (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999). It will not have substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.

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

    This action does not have tribal implications as specified in Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000). This action relates to toxic chemical reporting under EPCRA section 313, which primarily affects private sector facilities. Thus, Executive Order 13175 does not apply to this action.

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

    EPA interprets Executive Order 13045 (62 FR 19885, April 23, 1997) as applying only to those regulatory actions that concern environmental health or safety risks that EPA has reason to believe may disproportionately affect children, per the definition of “covered regulatory action” in section 2-202 of the Executive Order. This action is not subject to Executive Order 13045 because it does not concern an environmental health risk or safety risk.

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

    This action is not subject to Executive Order 13211 (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001), because it is not a significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866.

    I. National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (NTTAA)

    This rulemaking does not involve technical standards and is therefore not subject to considerations under section 12(d) of NTTAA, 15 U.S.C. 272 note.

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

    EPA has determined that this action will not have disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects on minority or low-income populations as specified in Executive Order 12898 (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994). This action does not address any human health or environmental risks and does not affect the level of protection provided to human health or the environment. This action adds an additional chemical to the EPCRA section 313 reporting requirements. By adding a chemical to the list of toxic chemicals subject to reporting under section 313 of EPCRA, EPA would be providing communities across the United States (including minority populations and low income populations) with access to data which they may use to seek lower exposures and consequently reductions in chemical risks for themselves and their children. This information can also be used by government agencies and others to identify potential problems, set priorities, and take appropriate steps to reduce any potential risks to human health and the environment. Therefore, the informational benefits of the action would have positive human health and environmental impacts on minority populations, low-income populations, and children.

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 372

    Environmental protection, Community right-to-know, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, and Toxic chemicals.

    Dated: November 2, 2016. Gina McCarthy, Administrator.

    Therefore, it is proposed that 40 CFR chapter I be amended as follows:

    PART 372—[AMENDED] 1. The authority citation for part 372 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    42 U.S.C. 11023 and 11048.

    2. In § 372.65, paragraph (c) is amended by adding alphabetically an entry for “Nonylphenol Ethoxylates (This category includes only those chemicals covered by the CAS numbers listed here)” to the table to read as follows:
    § 372.65 Chemicals and chemical categories to which this part applies.

    (c) * * *

    Category name Effective
  • date
  • *         *         *         *         *         *         * Nonylphenol Ethoxylates (This category includes only those chemicals covered by the CAS numbers listed here) 1/1/18  7311-27-5 Ethanol, 2-[2-[2-[2-(4-nonylphenoxy)ethoxy]ethoxy]ethoxy]-  9016-45-9 Poly(oxy-1,2-ethanediyl), α-(nonylphenyl)-ω-hydroxy- 20427-84-3 Ethanol, 2-[2-(4-nonylphenoxy)ethoxy]- 26027-38-3 Poly(oxy-1,2-ethanediyl), α-(4-nonylphenyl)-ω-hydroxy- 26571-11-9 3,6,9,12,15,18,21,24-Octaoxahexacosan-1-ol, 26-(nonylphenoxy)- 27176-93-8 Ethanol, 2-[2-(nonylphenoxy)ethoxy]- 27177-05-5 3,6,9,12,15,18,21-Heptaoxatricosan-1-ol, 23-(nonylphenoxy)- 27177-08-8 3,6,9,12,15,18,21,24,27-Nonaoxanonacosan-1-ol, 29-(nonylphenoxy)- 27986-36-3 Ethanol, 2-(nonylphenoxy)- 37205-87-1 Poly(oxy-1,2-ethanediyl), α-(isononylphenyl)-ω-hydroxy- 51938-25-1 Poly(oxy-1,2-ethanediyl), α-(2-nonylphenyl)-ω-hydroxy- 68412-54-4 Poly(oxy-1,2-ethanediyl), α-(nonylphenyl)-ω-hydroxy-, branched 127087-87-0 Poly(oxy-1,2-ethanediyl), α-(4-nonylphenyl)-ω-hydroxy-, branched *         *         *         *         *         *         *
    [FR Doc. 2016-27547 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 216 [Docket No. 080302361-6677-01] RIN 0648-AU02 Protective Regulations for Hawaiian Spinner Dolphins Under the Marine Mammal Protection Act; Reopening of Public Comment Period AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule; reopening of public comment period.

    SUMMARY:

    We, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), are reopening the public comment period on the proposed rule under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) to prohibit swimming with and approaching a Hawaiian spinner dolphin within 50 yards (45.7 m) (for persons, vessels, and objects), including approach by interception. The comment period for the proposed rule that published on August 24, 2016 (81 FR 57854) closed on October 23, 2016. NMFS is reopening the public comment period for an additional 15 days to provide the public with additional time to submit information and to comment on this proposed rule.

    DATES:

    Written comments on this proposed rule must be received by December 1, 2016. Comments received between the close of the first comment period on October 23, 2016, and the reopening of the comment period November 16, 2016 will be considered timely received.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, information, or data on the proposed rule, identified by NOAA-2005-0226, and on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) by either of the following methods:

    Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-2005-0226, click the “Comment Now!” icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments.

    Mail: Submit written comments to Susan Pultz, Chief, Conservation Planning and Rulemaking Branch, Protected Resources Division, National Marine Fisheries Service, Pacific Islands Regional Office, 1845 Wasp Blvd., Bldg. 176, Honolulu, HI 96818, Attn: Hawaiian Spinner Dolphin Proposed Rule.

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

    The DEIS and references can be found online at http://www.fpir.noaa.gov/PRD/prd_spinner_EIS.html. Additionally, copies of the DEIS are available in print at the following libraries:

    Hilo Library, 300 Waianuenue Ave., Hilo, HI 96720;

    Kailua-Kona Library, 75-138 Hualalai Rd., Kailua Kona, HI 96740;

    Kealakekua Library, 81-6619 Mamalahoa Hwy., Kealakekua, HI 96750;

    Pahoa Library, 15-3070 Pahoa-Kalapana Rd., Pahoa, HI 96778;

    Kihei Library, 35 Waimahaihai St., Kihei, HI 96753;

    Lahaina Library, 680 Wharf St., Lahaina, HI 96761;

    Lanai Library, 555 Fraser Ave., Lanai City, HI 96763;

    Hawaii State Library, 478 S. King St., Honolulu, HI 96813;

    Waianae Library, 85-625 Farrington Hwy., Waianae, HI 96792; and

    Lihue Library, 4344 Hardy St., Lihue, HI 96766;

    or upon request from the Conservation Planning and Rulemaking Branch Chief (see ADDRESSES).
    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Susan Pultz, NMFS, Pacific Islands Region, Chief, Conservation Planning and Rulemaking Branch, 808-725-5150; or Trevor Spradlin, NMFS, Office of Protected Resources, Acting Chief, Marine Mammal and Sea Turtle Conservation Division, 301-427-8402.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    On August 24, 2016, we published a proposed rule to prohibit swimming with and approaching a Hawaiian spinner dolphin within 50 yards (45.7 meters) (for persons, vessels, and objects), including approach by interception. These proposed regulatory measures are intended to prevent take, as defined under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), of Hawaiian spinner dolphins from occurring in marine areas where viewing pressures are most prevalent. The proposed rule allowed for a 60-day public comment period, which ended on October 23, 2016.

    NMFS has received several requests to extend the public comment period. These requests indicated that additional time was needed to consider more fully the proposed rulemaking and DEIS and to provide comments on the proposed regulations. Requests also indicated that additional time was needed for tour operators to compile and provide data with regard to spinner dolphin use of coastal habitats from multiple years of logbook records. In response to these requests, we are reopening the public comment period until December 1, 2016, to receive additional information and comments that may be relevant to any aspect of the proposal. Comments and information submitted during the prior comment period will be fully considered in the preparation of the final rule and need not be resubmitted.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.

    Dated: November 8, 2016. Samuel D. Rauch III, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27399 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    81 221 Wednesday, November 16, 2016 Notices DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Food Safety and Inspection Service [Docket No. FSIS-2016-0030] Nutrition Facts Label Compliance AGENCY:

    Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is announcing that while FSIS is in the process of rulemaking to update the Nutrition Facts label format for meat and poultry products, establishments may voluntarily choose to use the Nutrition Facts label format that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently finalized (“Food Labeling: Revision of the Nutrition and Supplement facts labels”, May 27, 2016; 81 FR 33742; and “Food Labeling: Serving Sizes of Foods That Can Reasonably be Consumed at One-Eating Occasion; Dual-Column Labeling; Updating, Modifying, and Establishing Certain Reference Amounts Customarily Consumed; Serving Size for Breath Mints; and Technical Amendments”; May 27, 2016; 81 FR 34000). As long as the information on the labels is still truthful and not misleading, FSIS will not find noncompliance if companies use the FDA format. When FSIS publishes a final rule to update the Nutrition Facts label format for meat and poultry products, companies would have to comply with that final rule by the effective date and will no longer be able to use the FDA format if it is different from the FSIS format.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received by December 16, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    FSIS invites interested persons to submit comments on this notice. Comments may be submitted by one of the following methods:

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: This Web site provides the ability to type short comments directly into the comment field on this Web page or attach a file for lengthier comments. Go to http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the on-line instructions at that site for submitting comments.

    Mail, including CD-ROMs, etc.: Send to Docket Clerk, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food Safety and Inspection Service, Patriots Plaza 3, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Mailstop 3782, Room 8-163B, Washington, DC 20250-3700.

    Hand- or Courier-Delivered Submittals: Deliver to Patriots Plaza 3, 355 E Street SW., Room 8-163B, Washington, DC 20250-3700.

    Instructions: All items submitted by mail or electronic mail must include the Agency name and docket number FSIS-2016-0030. Comments received in response to this docket will be made available for public inspection and posted without change, including any personal information, to http://www.regulations.gov.

    Docket: For access to background documents or comments received, go to the FSIS Docket Room at Patriots Plaza 3, 355 E Street SW., Room 8-164, Washington, DC 20250-3700 between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Jeff Canavan, Deputy Director, Labeling and Program Delivery Staff, Office of Policy and Program Development, Food Safety and Inspection Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Stop Code 3784, Patriots Plaza 3, 8-161A, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250-3700; Telephone (301) 504-0879; Fax (202) 245-4792.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    FSIS is the public health regulatory agency in the USDA that is responsible for ensuring that the nation's commercial supply of meat, poultry, and egg products is safe, wholesome, and accurately labeled and packaged. Under the Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA) (21 U.S.C. 601-695, at 607), the Poultry Products Inspection Act (PPIA) (21 U.S.C. 451-470, at 457), and the Egg Products Inspection Act (21 U.S.C. 1031-1056, at 1036) (the “Acts”), the labels of meat, poultry, and egg products must be approved by the Secretary of Agriculture, who has delegated this authority to FSIS, before these products can enter commerce. The Acts prohibit the sale or offer for sale by any person, firm, or corporation of any article in commerce under any name or other marking or labeling that is false or misleading or in any container of a misleading form or size (21 U.S.C. 607(d); 21 U.S.C. 457(c)). The Acts also prohibit the distribution in commerce of meat or poultry products that are adulterated or misbranded. The FMIA and PPIA give FSIS broad authority to promulgate such rules and regulations as are necessary to carry out the provisions of the Acts (21 U.S.C. 621 and 463(b)).

    To prevent meat and poultry products from being misbranded, the meat and poultry product inspection regulations require that the labels of meat and poultry products include specific information, such as nutrition labels, and that such information be displayed as prescribed in the regulations (9 CFR part 317 and part 381). The nutrition labeling requirements for meat and meat food products are in 9 CFR 317.300-317.400, and the nutrition labeling requirements for poultry products are in 9 CFR 381.400-381.500.

    Nutrition Facts Label Compliance

    On May 27, 2016, FDA published two final rules, “Food Labeling: Revision of the Nutrition and Supplement Facts Labels” (81 FR 33742) and “Food Labeling: Serving Sizes of Foods That Can Reasonably Be Consumed at One-Eating Occasion; Dual-Column Labeling; Updating, Modifying, and Establishing Certain Reference Amounts Customarily Consumed; Serving Size for Breath Mints; and Technical Amendments” (81 FR 34000), to update the Nutrition Facts label to reflect newer nutrition and public health research and recent dietary recommendations from expert groups and to improve the presentation of nutrition information to help consumers make more informed choices and maintain healthy dietary practices. FSIS has reviewed FDA's analysis and believes it is necessary to propose nutrition labeling regulations for meat and poultry products that will parallel, to the extent possible, FDA's regulations. This approach will help prevent consumer confusion and nonuniformity in the marketplace. While FSIS is in the process of rulemaking to update the Nutrition Facts label format for meat and poultry products, establishments may voluntarily choose to use the Nutrition Facts label format that FDA recently finalized (81 FR 33742 and 81 FR 34000). As long as the information on the labels is still truthful and not misleading, FSIS will not find noncompliance if companies use the FDA format. Because FDA's new Nutrition Facts format is different than FSIS's current regulations, and the new formatted labels that FSIS's Labeling and Program Delivery Staff (LPDS) has reviewed so far contained errors and needed corrections, companies that wish to use FDA's Nutrition Facts label format will need to submit at least one label sketch in that format to LPDS. A parent company for a corporation may submit only one label application for a product produced in other establishments that are owned by the corporation. Subsequent similar labels that use FDA's Nutrition Facts format for other products can be generically approved. Submitting one label and receiving approval helps ensure the rest are applied in compliance with FDA's regulations and may prevent additional problems in the future. FSIS believes that if only one label is submitted per corporation, LPDS's review would not be a large burden to FSIS or industry and wouldn't adversely affect the label review backlog. When FSIS publishes a final rule to update the Nutrition Facts label format for meat and poultry products, companies would have to comply with that final rule by the effective date and will no longer be able to use the FDA format if it is different from the FSIS format. FSIS is requesting comments on whether there are any issues or problems with allowing companies to voluntarily use FDA's Nutrition Facts label format on meat and poultry products until FSIS issues a final rule that addresses nutrition labeling requirements.

    USDA Nondiscrimination Statement

    No agency, officer, or employee of the USDA shall, on the grounds of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, family/parental status, income derived from a public assistance program, or political beliefs, exclude from participation in, deny the benefits of, or subject to discrimination, any person in the United States under any program or activity conducted by the USDA.

    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]

    Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.) should contact USDA's TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TDD).

    Additional Public Notification

    Public awareness of all segments of rulemaking and policy development is important. Consequently, in an effort to ensure that minorities, women, and persons with disabilities are aware of this notice, FSIS will announce it on-line through the FSIS Web page located at http://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal/fsis/topics/regulations/federal-register/federal-register-notices.

    FSIS also will make copies of this Federal Register publication available through the FSIS Constituent Update, which is used to provide information regarding FSIS policies, procedures, regulations, Federal Register notices, FSIS public meetings, recalls, and other types of information that could affect or would be of interest to constituents and stakeholders. The update is communicated via Listserv, a free electronic mail subscription service for industry, trade and farm groups, consumer interest groups, allied health professionals, and other individuals who have asked to be included. The update is available on the FSIS Web page. Through the Listserv and Web page, FSIS is able to provide information to a much broader and more diverse audience. In addition, FSIS offers an email subscription service which provides automatic and customized access to selected food safety news and information. This service is available at: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/subscribe.

    Options range from recalls to export information to regulations, directives and notices. Customers can add or delete subscriptions themselves and have the option to password protect their account.

    Dated: November 10, 2016. Alfred V. Almanza, Acting Administrator.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27506 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-DM-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Bureau of the Census Federal Economic Statistics Advisory Committee AGENCY:

    Bureau of the Census, Department of Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Notice of Advisory Committee charter renewal.

    SUMMARY:

    The Secretary of Commerce has determined that renewal of the charter of the Federal Economic Statistics Advisory Committee (FESAC) is necessary and in the public interest in connection with the performance of duties imposed by law on the U.S. Department of Commerce, and with the concurrence of the General Services Administration, established within the Economics and Statistics Administration (ESA), Department of Commerce. The renewed FESAC charter can be found on the Bureau of the Census' (Census Bureau's) Advisory Committee Web site at the following link: http://www.census.gov/fesac/.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    James R. Spletzer, Designated Federal Official for the Federal Economic Statistics Advisory Committee, Principal Economist, U.S. Census Bureau, Room 5K019, Washington, DC 20233, telephone 301-763-4069, [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Committee presents advice and makes recommendations to the Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Department of Commerce's bureaus consisting of ESA, the Bureau of Economic Analysis, and the Census Bureau (the Agencies) from the perspective of the professional economics and statistics community. The Committee examines the Agencies' programs and provides advice on statistical methodology, research needed, and other technical matters related to the collection, tabulation, and analysis of Federal economic statistics.

    The Committee is a technical committee that is balanced in terms of the professional expertise required. It consists of approximately 16 members, appointed by the Agencies. Its members are economists, statisticians, and behavioral scientists who are recognized for their attainments and objectivity in their respective fields.

    The FESAC will function solely as an advisory body and in compliance with provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act. Pursuant to subsection 9(c) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, 5 U.S.C., App., as amended, this charter was filed with the Chief Financial Officer and Assistant Secretary for Administration, Department of Commerce, on September 30, 2016. Subsequently, a copy was furnished to the Library of Congress and filed with the following Committees of Congress:

    • Senate Committee on Appropriations;

    • Senate Committee on Finance;

    • Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation;

    • Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs;

    • House Committee on Appropriations; and

    • House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

    Dated: November 8, 2016. John H. Thompson, Director, Bureau of the Census.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27534 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-07-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Bureau of the Census Federal Economic Statistics Advisory Committee Meeting AGENCY:

    Bureau of the Census, Department of Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Notice of public meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The Bureau of the Census (U.S. Census Bureau) is giving notice of a meeting of the Federal Economic Statistics Advisory Committee (FESAC). The Committee will advise the Directors of the Economics and Statistics Administration's (ESA) two statistical agencies, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) and the Census Bureau, and the Commissioner of the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) on statistical methodology and other technical matters related to the collection, tabulation, and analysis of federal economic statistics. Last minute changes to the agenda are possible, which could prevent giving advance public notice of schedule adjustments.

    DATES:

    December 9, 2016. The meeting will begin at approximately 9:00 a.m. and adjourn at approximately 4:30 p.m.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting will be held at the U.S. Census Bureau Conference Center, 4600 Silver Hill Road, Suitland, MD 20746.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    James R. Spletzer, Designated Federal Official, Department of Commerce, U.S. Census Bureau, Research and Methodology Directorate, Room 5K019, 4600 Silver Hill Road, Washington, DC 20233, telephone 301-763-4069, email: [email protected]. For TTY callers, please call the Federal Relay Service (FRS) at 1-800-877-8339 and give them the above listed number you would like to call. This service is free and confidential.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Members of the FESAC are appointed by the Secretary of Commerce. The Committee advises the Directors of the BEA, the Census Bureau, and the Commissioner of the Department of Labor's BLS, on statistical methodology and other technical matters related to the collection, tabulation, and analysis of federal economic statistics. The Committee is established in accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act (Title 5, United States Code, Appendix 2).

    The meeting is open to the public, and a brief period is set aside for public comments and questions. Persons with extensive questions or statements must submit them in writing at least three days before the meeting to the Designated Federal Official named above. If you plan to attend the meeting, please register by Thursday, December 1, 2016. You may access the online registration form with the following link: https://www.regonline.com/fesac_dec2016_meeting. Seating is available to the public on a first-come, first-served basis.

    This meeting is physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should also be directed to the Designated Federal Official as soon as known, and preferably two weeks prior to the meeting.

    Due to increased security and for access to the meeting, please call 301-763-9906 upon arrival at the Census Bureau on the day of the meeting. A photo ID must be presented in order to receive your visitor's badge. Visitors are not allowed beyond the first floor.

    Dated: November 9, 2016. John H. Thompson, Director, Bureau of the Census.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27533 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-07-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request

    The Department of Commerce will submit to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for clearance the following proposal for collection of information under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. chapter 35).

    Agency: U.S. Census Bureau.

    Title: Annual Capital Expenditures Survey.

    OMB Control Number: 0607-0782.

    Form Number(s): ACE-1(S), ACE-1(M), ACE-1(L), ACE-1(I), ACE-2, ACE-2(I).

    Type of Request: Revision of a currently approved collection.

    Number of Respondents: 75,035.

    Average Hours per Response: 2.32 hours.

    Burden Hours: 174,355.

    Needs and Uses: A major concern of economic policymakers is the adequacy of investment in plant and equipment. Data on the amount of business expenditures for new plant and equipment and measures of the stock of existing facilities are critical to evaluating productivity growth, the ability of U.S. business to compete with foreign business, changes in industrial capacity, and overall economic performance. The ACES is the sole source of detailed comprehensive statistics on investment in buildings and other structures, machinery, and equipment by private nonfarm businesses in the United States.

    Data users tell us that they need comprehensive and consistent data on investment by all private nonfarm businesses, by industry, by kind of investment, i.e., whether in new or used structures or equipment. The objectives of the ACES are:

    (a) To provide estimates of capital expenditures for all private nonfarm sectors of the economy by 3-digit and selected 4-digit North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) levels;

    (b) to base the survey on a probability sample that yields measures of the statistical reliability of the survey estimates;

    (c) to develop a base survey to benchmark more frequent surveys on capital expenditures that do not have complete industry coverage;

    (d) to produce annual enterprise-level data with the level of detail, coverage, and quality which previously was only available as part of the quinquennial economic census;

    (e) to provide detail on capital expenditures for estimating the national income and product accounts, estimating the productivity of U.S. industries, evaluating fiscal and monetary policy, and conducting research using capital expenditures data; and

    (f) to provide industry analysts with capital expenditures data for market analysis, economic forecasting, identifying business opportunities, product development, and business planning.

    This request is for a revision to the currently approved collection and will cover the 2016 through 2018 ACES (conducted in fiscal years 2017 through 2019). A change from the previous ACES authorization is the addition of detailed capital expenditures by type of structure and type of equipment. These data, collected every five years, were last collected in the 2012 ACES and will be collected again in the 2017 ACES. Another change is the collection of survey data from both employer and non-employer companies solely through electronic reporting. All companies will receive a notification letter containing their User ID and password, and will be directed to report online through the Census Bureau's Business Help Site. The online reporting instruments are an electronic version of the paper data collection instruments that will no longer be used. We will no longer have paper forms but respondents have the ability to print an ACES worksheet to use as a guide and/or a record of their response once they have completed the survey.

    In addition to capital expenditures, all employer businesses will be asked to provide sales and receipts information to calculate industry investment to sales ratios and to assist in verifying that consolidated company data are being reported. Asset and depreciation information, also collected, assists in measuring changes in the nation's capital stock estimates.

    The capital expenditures data collected annually from a sample of non-employer businesses are intended to better represent the total capital expenditures activity of all firms.

    The Census Bureau will collect and publish ACES data based on the 2012 NAICS. Industries in the survey will comprise 3-digit and 4-digit 2012 NAICS codes.

    The ACES is an integral part of the Federal Government's effort to improve the quality and usefulness of National economic statistics. Federal agencies, including the Census Bureau, use these data to improve and supplement ongoing statistical programs.

    The Census Bureau uses the ACES data to improve the quality of monthly economic indicators of investment. The Census Bureau's Value of New Construction Put in Place survey currently uses the ACES data to benchmark its industrial buildings data.

    The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) uses the ACES annual capital expenditures data for equipment and computer software to prepare estimates of private fixed investment, a major component of gross domestic product (GDP). BEA also uses these data to prepare estimates of investment by industry in the fixed assets accounts (FAAs). Investment in structures from the ACES are used by BEA to prepare the gross domestic output of the construction industries in GDP by industry. Data collected by ACES every five years on industry capital expenditures by type of structure and type of equipment are critical inputs for preparing benchmarked estimates of private fixed investment in the national income and product accounts (NIPA), the input-output accounts, and the FAAs.

    The Federal Reserve Board (FRB) uses the ACES data to improve estimates of investment indicators for monetary policy. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) uses the ACES annual data to improve estimates of capital stocks for productivity analysis and the detailed types of structures and types of equipment data collected every five years to improve estimates of manufacturing multifactor productivity measures.

    The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services uses the data for monitoring and evaluating the healthcare industries.

    The Department of the Treasury uses the data in analysis of depreciation.

    In addition, the ACES data provide industry analysts with capital expenditure data for market analysts, economic forecasting, identifying business opportunities, product development, and business planning.

    The capital expenditures by type of structure and type of equipment are critical to ensuring the appropriateness of capital expenditures statistics in years detailed data by types of structures and types of equipment are not collected.

    Affected Public: Business & other for-profit; Not-for-profit institutions.

    Frequency: Annually.

    Respondent's Obligation: Mandatory.

    Legal Authority: Title 13 United States Code, Sections 131 and 182. Sections 224 and 225 of Title 13 make this survey mandatory.

    This information collection request may be viewed at www.reginfo.gov. Follow the instructions to view Department of Commerce collections currently under review by OMB.

    Written comments and recommendations for the proposed information collection should be sent within 30 days of publication of this notice to [email protected] or fax to (202) 395-5806.

    Sheleen Dumas, PRA Departmental Lead, Office of the Chief Information Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27499 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-07-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [B-75-2016] Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) 122—Corpus Christi, Texas; Notification of Proposed Production Activity; voestalpine Texas, LLC (Hot Briquetted Iron By-Products); Portland, Texas

    The Port of Corpus Christi Authority, grantee of FTZ 122, submitted a notification of proposed production activity to the FTZ Board on behalf of voestalpine Texas, LLC (voestalpine), located in Portland, Texas. The notification conforming to the requirements of the regulations of the FTZ Board (15 CFR 400.22) was received on November 7, 2016.

    voestalpine already has authority to produce hot briquetted iron using foreign-sourced iron ore pellets within Subzone 122T. The current request would add hot briquetted iron (HBI) by-products and foreign-status materials/components to the scope of authority. Pursuant to 15 CFR 400.14(b), additional FTZ authority would be limited to the specific foreign-status materials/components and specific by-products described in the submitted notification (as described below) and subsequently authorized by the FTZ Board.

    Production under FTZ procedures could exempt voestalpine from customs duty payments on the foreign-status materials/components used in export production. On its domestic sales, voestalpine would be able to choose the duty rates during customs entry procedures that apply to the HBI by-products—iron sludge, recycled iron briquettes, direct reduction remet, and iron fines (duty free) for the foreign-status materials/components noted below and in the existing scope of authority. Customs duties also could possibly be deferred or reduced on foreign-status production equipment.

    The materials which may be sourced from abroad include sodium bentonite and slaked lime (duty free).

    Public comment is invited from interested parties. Submissions shall be addressed to the FTZ Board's Executive Secretary at the address below. The closing period for their receipt is December 27, 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 FTZ Board's Web site, which is accessible via www.trade.gov/ftz.

    For further information, contact Diane Finver at [email protected] or (202) 482-1367.

    Dated: November 8, 2016. Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27571 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [S-112-2016] Approval of Expansion of Subzone 92B; Huntington Ingalls Industries; Pascagoula, Mississippi

    On August 9, 2016, the Executive Secretary of the Foreign-Trade Zones (FTZ) Board docketed an application submitted by the Mississippi Coast Foreign Trade Zone, Inc., grantee of FTZ 92, requesting an additional site within Subzone 92B on behalf of Huntington Ingalls Industries. The existing subzone and the proposed site would be subject to the existing activation limit of FTZ 92.

    The application was processed in accordance with the FTZ Act and Regulations, including notice in the Federal Register inviting public comment (81 FR 54041-54042, August 15, 2016). The FTZ staff examiner reviewed the application and determined that it meets the criteria for approval.

    Pursuant to the authority delegated to the FTZ Board's Executive Secretary (15 CFR Sec. 400.36(f)), the application to expand Subzone 92B is approved, subject to the FTZ Act and the Board's regulations, including Section 400.13, and further subject to FTZ 92's 2,000-acre activation limit.

    Dated: November 8, 2016. Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27568 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [S-159-2016] Foreign-Trade Zone 61—San Juan, Puerto Rico; Application for Subzone; Aceros de América, Inc.; San Juan, Puerto Rico

    An application has been submitted to the Foreign-Trade Zones Board (the Board) by the Puerto Rico Trade & Export Company, grantee of FTZ 61, requesting subzone status for the facility of Aceros de América, Inc., located in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The application was submitted pursuant to the provisions of the Foreign-Trade Zones Act, as amended (19 U.S.C. 81a-81u), and the regulations of the Board (15 CFR part 400). It was formally docketed on November 10, 2016.

    The proposed subzone (4.49 acres) is located at State Road #1, km 25.0, Quebrada Arenas Ward, San Juan. The proposed subzone would be subject to the existing activation limit of FTZ 61. No authorization for production activity has been requested at this time.

    In accordance with the Board's regulations, Camille Evans of the FTZ Staff is designated examiner to review the application and make recommendations to the Executive Secretary.

    Public comment is invited from interested parties. Submissions shall be addressed to the Board's Executive Secretary at the address below. The closing period for their receipt is December 27, 2016. Rebuttal comments in response to material submitted during the foregoing period may be submitted during the subsequent 15-day period to January 10, 2017.

    A copy of the application will be available for public inspection at the Office of the Executive Secretary, Foreign-Trade Zones Board, Room 21013, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230-0002, and in the “Reading Room” section of the Board's Web site, which is accessible via www.trade.gov/ftz.

    For further information, contact Camille Evans at [email protected] or (202) 482-2350.

    Dated: November 10, 2016. Elizabeth Whiteman, Acting Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27574 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [S-117-2016] Approval of Subzone Status; ASICS America Corporation; Byhalia, Mississippi

    On August 16, 2016, the Executive Secretary of the Foreign-Trade Zones (FTZ) Board docketed an application submitted by the Northern Mississippi FTZ, Inc., grantee of FTZ 262, requesting subzone status subject to the existing activation limit of FTZ 262, on behalf of ASICS America Corporation in Byhalia, Mississippi.

    The application was processed in accordance with the FTZ Act and Regulations, including notice in the Federal Register inviting public comment (81 FR 56582, August 22, 2016). The FTZ staff examiner reviewed the application and determined that it meets the criteria for approval.

    Pursuant to the authority delegated to the FTZ Board's Executive Secretary (15 CFR Sec. 400.36(f)), the application to establish Subzone 262C is approved, subject to the FTZ Act and the Board's regulations, including Section 400.13, and further subject to FTZ 262's 680-acre activation limit.

    Dated: November 8, 2016. Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27570 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-588-850] Certain Large Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line, and Pressure Pipe (Over 41/2 Inches) From Japan: Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review and Final Determination of No Shipments; 2014-2015 AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    On July 12, 2016, the Department of Commerce (the Department) published the preliminary results of the administrative review of the antidumping duty order on certain large diameter carbon and alloy seamless standard, line, and pressure pipe (over 41/2 inches) from Japan. The period of review (POR) is June 1, 2014, through May 31, 2015. The review covers five producers or exporters of subject merchandise. We invited parties to comment on the Preliminary Results. None were received. Accordingly, for the final results, we continue to find that that NKK Tubes (NKK) had no shipments during the POR. Further, we continue to find that subject merchandise has been sold in the United States at less than normal value by JFE Steel Corporation (JFE), Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation (NSSMC), Nippon Steel Corporation (NSC), and Sumitomo Metal Industries, Ltd. (SMI).

    DATES:

    Effective November 16, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Peter Zukowski, AD/CVD Operations, Office I, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-0189.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    On July 12, 2016, the Department published the Preliminary Results of the administrative review.1 The Department gave interested parties an opportunity to comment on the Preliminary Results. We received no comments. The Department conducted this review in accordance with section 751(a)(2) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act).

    1See Certain Large Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line, and Pressure Pipe (Over 41/2 Inches) from Japan: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review and Preliminary Determination of No Shipments; 2014-2015, 81 FR 45126 (July 12, 2016) (Preliminary Results).

    Scope of the Order

    The merchandise subject to the order is certain large diameter carbon and alloy seamless standard, line, and pressure pipe (over 41/2 inches) from Japan, which is currently classified under subheading 7304.10.10.30, 7304.10.10.45, 7304.10.10.60, 7304.10.50.50, 7304.19.10.30, 7304.19.10.45, 7304.19.10.60, 7304.19.50.50, 7304.31.60.10, 7304.31.60.50, 7304.39.00.04, 7304.39.00.06, 7304.39.00.08, 7304.39.00.36, 7304.39.00.40, 7304.39.00.44, 7304.39.00.48, 7304.39.00.52, 7304.39.00.56, 7304.39.00.62, 7304.39.00.68, 7304.39.00.72, 7304.51.50.15, 7304.51.50.45, 7304.51.50.60, 7304.59.20.30, 7304.59.20.55, 7304.59.20.60, 7304.59.20.70, 7304.59.60.00, 7304.59.80.30, 7304.59.80.35, 7304.59.80.40, 7304.59.80.45, 7304.59.80.50, 7304.59.80.55, 7304.59.80.60, 7304.59.80.65, and 7304.59.80.70 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS). Although the HTSUS subheadings are provided for convenience and customs purposes, the written description of the merchandise subject to the order is dispositive.2

    2 For a full description of the scope of the order, see the “Preliminary Decision Memorandum for the Administrative Review of the Antidumping Duty Order on Certain Large Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line, and Pressure Pipe (Over 41/2 Inches) from Japan; 2014-2015 Administrative Review” from Gary Taverman, Associate Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations, to Ronald K. Lorentzen, Acting Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance, dated July 5, 2016, which can be accessed directly at http://enforcement.trade.gov/frn (Preliminary Decision Memorandum).

    Final Determination of No Shipments

    As noted in the Preliminary Results, the Department received a claim of no shipments from NKK. In the Preliminary Results, the Department preliminarily found that NKK did not have reviewable entries during the POR. Additionally, the Department stated in the Preliminary Results that it was not appropriate to rescind the review with respect to NKK at that time, but rather complete the review with respect to NKK and issue appropriate instructions to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) based on the final results.

    After issuing the Preliminary Results, the Department received no comments from interested parties, and has not received any information that would cause it to alter its preliminary determination. Therefore, for these final results, the Department continues to find that NKK did not have any reviewable entries during the POR.

    Final Results of Review

    Because the Department received no comments after the Preliminary Results for consideration for these final results, we have made no changes to the Preliminary Results. As a result of this review, we determine that dumping margins on certain large diameter carbon and alloy seamless standard, line, and pressure pipe (over 41/2 inches) from Japan exist for the period June 1, 2014, through May 31, 2015, at the following rates:

    Producer and/or exporter Margin
  • (percent)
  • JFE Steel Corporation 107.80 Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation 107.80 Nippon Steel Corporation 107.80 Sumitomo Metals Industries 107.80
    Assessment

    The Department has determined, and CBP shall assess, antidumping duties on all appropriate entries of subject merchandise in accordance with the final results of this review.3 The Department intends to issue assessment instructions to CBP 15 days after the date of publication of these final results of review. We will instruct CBP to apply an ad valorem assessment rate of 107.80 percent to all entries of subject merchandise during the POR which were produced and/or exported by NSSMC, and an ad valorem assessment rate of 107.80 percent to all entries of subject merchandise during the POR which were produced and/or exported by the companies that were not selected for individual examination: JFE, NSC, and SMI.4 Additionally, because the Department determined that NKK had no shipments of subject merchandise during the POR, any suspended entries that entered under NKK's AD case number (i.e., at that exporter's rate) will be liquidated at the all-others rate effective during the period of review if there is no rate for the intermediate company(ies) involved in the transaction.5

    3See 19 CFR 351.212(b).

    4See Preliminary Decision Memorandum at section V.b “Rate for Non-Examined Companies” (for an explanation of how we preliminarily determined the rate for non-selected companies).

    5See Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Proceedings: Assessment of Antidumping Duties, 68 FR 23954 (May 6, 2003).

    Cash Deposit Requirements

    The following deposit requirements will be effective upon publication of the notice of final results of administrative review for all shipments of certain large diameter carbon and alloy seamless standard, line, and pressure pipe (over 41/2 inches) from Japan entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after the date of publication, as provided by section 751(a)(2) of the Act: (1) The cash deposit rates for the reviewed companies will be the rates established in the final results of this review; (2) for merchandise exported by manufacturers or exporters not covered in this review but covered in a prior segment of the proceeding, the cash deposit rate will continue to be the company-specific rate published for the most recently completed segment of this proceeding; (3) if the exporter is not a firm covered in this review, a prior review, or the less-than-fair-value investigation but the manufacturer is, the cash deposit rate will be the rate established for the most recently completed segment of this proceeding for the manufacturer of the merchandise; (4) if neither the exporter nor the manufacturer has its own rate, the cash deposit rate will continue to be 68.88 percent, the all-others rate established in the order.6 These deposit requirements, when imposed, shall remain in effect until further notice.

    6See Notice of Antidumping Duty Orders: Certain Large Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line and Pressure Pipe from Japan; and Certain Small Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line and Pressure Pipe From Japan and the Republic of South Africa, 65 FR 39360 (June 26, 2000).

    Notification to Importers

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

    Administrative Protective Orders

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

    We are issuing and publishing these results in accordance with sections 751(a)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Act.

    Dated: November 9, 2016. Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27519 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [Application No. 03-2A008] Export Trade Certificate of Review ACTION:

    Notice of issuance of an amended Export Trade Certificate of Review to California Pistachio Export Council (“CPEC”), Application No. 03-2A008.

    SUMMARY:

    The U.S. Department of Commerce issued an amended Export Trade Certificate of Review to CPEC on November 1, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Joseph E. Flynn, Director, Office of Trade and Economic Analysis (“OTEA”), International Trade Administration, by telephone at (202) 482-5131 (this is not a toll-free number) or email at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title III of the Export Trading Company Act of 1982 (15 U.S.C. Sections 4001-21) authorizes the Secretary of Commerce to issue Export Trade Certificates of Review. The regulations implementing Title III are found at 15 CFR part 325 (2016). OTEA is issuing this notice pursuant to 15 CFR 325.6(b), which requires the Secretary of Commerce to publish a summary of the certification in the Federal Register. Under Section 305(a) of the Act and 15 CFR 325.11(a), any person aggrieved by the Secretary's determination may, within 30 days of the date of this notice, bring an action in any appropriate district court of the United States to set aside the determination on the ground that the determination is erroneous.

    Description of Amended Certificate

    CPEC's Export Trade Certificate of Review has been amended to:

    1. Add the following companies as Members of the Certificate: ARO Pistachios, Inc., and Zymex Industries, Inc.

    CPEC's amendment of its Export Trade Certificate of Review results in the following membership list:

    (a) ARO Pistachios, Inc.

    (b) Keenan Farms, Inc.

    (c) Monarch Nut Company

    (d) Nichols Pistachio

    (e) Primex Farms, LLC

    (f) Setton Pistachio of Terra Bella, Inc.

    (g) Horizon Marketing Agency in Common Cooperative Inc.

    (h) Zymex Industries, Inc.

    Dated: November 9, 2016. Amanda Reynolds, Office of Trade and Economic Analysis, International Trade Administration.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27475 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DR-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Order, Finding, or Suspended Investigation; Advance Notification of Sunset Reviews AGENCY:

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

    Background

    Every five years, pursuant to section 751(c) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (“the Act”), the Department of Commerce (“the Department”) and the International Trade Commission automatically initiate and conduct a review to determine whether revocation of a countervailing or antidumping duty order or termination of an investigation suspended under section 704 or 734 of the Act would be likely to lead to continuation or recurrence of dumping or a countervailable subsidy (as the case may be) and of material injury.

    Upcoming Sunset Reviews for December 2016

    The following Sunset Reviews are scheduled for initiation in December 2016 and will appear in that month's Notice of Initiation of Five-Year Sunset Reviews (“Sunset Reviews”).

    Antidumping duty proceedings Department contact Certain Cut-To-Length Carbon-Quality Steel Plate from India (A-533-817) (3rd Review) David Goldberger, (202) 482-4136. Stainless Steel Wire Rod from India (A-533-808) (4th Review) David Goldberger, (202) 482-4136. Certain Cut-To-Length Carbon-Quality Steel Plate from Indonesia (A-560-805) (3rd Review) David Goldberger, (202) 482-4136. Certain Cut-To-Length Carbon-Quality Steel Plate from Republic of Korea (A-580-836) (3rd Review) David Goldberger, (202) 482-4136. Countervailing Duty Proceedings Certain Cut-To-Length Carbon-Quality Steel Plate from India (C-533-818) (3rd Review) David Goldberger, (202) 482-4136. Certain Cut-To-Length Carbon-Quality Steel Plate from Indonesia (C-560-806) (3rd Review) David Goldberger, (202) 482-4136. Certain Cut-To-Length Carbon-Quality Steel Plate from Republic of Korea (C-580-837) (3rd Review) David Goldberger, (202) 482-4136. Suspended Investigations No Sunset Review of suspended investigations is scheduled for initiation in December 2016.

    The Department's procedures for the conduct of Sunset Reviews are set forth in 19 CFR 351.218. The Notice of Initiation of Five-Year (“Sunset”) Reviews provides further information regarding what is required of all parties to participate in Sunset Reviews.

    Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.103(c), the Department will maintain and make available a service list for these proceedings. To facilitate the timely preparation of the service list(s), it is requested that those seeking recognition as interested parties to a proceeding contact the Department in writing within 10 days of the publication of the Notice of Initiation.

    Please note that if the Department receives a Notice of Intent to Participate from a member of the domestic industry within 15 days of the date of initiation, the review will continue. Thereafter, any interested party wishing to participate in the Sunset Review must provide substantive comments in response to the notice of initiation no later than 30 days after the date of initiation.

    This notice is not required by statute but is published as a service to the international trading community.

    Dated: November 2, 2016. Christian Marsh, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27582 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-201-830] Carbon and Certain Alloy Steel Wire Rod From Mexico: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2014-2015 AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce (the Department) is conducting an administrative review of the antidumping duty order on carbon and certain alloy steel wire rod (wire rod) from Mexico. The period of review (POR) is October 1, 2014 through September 30, 2015. This review covers two producers/exporters of the subject merchandise: Deacero S.A.P.I. de C.V. (aka Deacero S.A. de C.V., hereinafter referred to as Deacero) and ArcelorMittal Las Truchas, S.A. de C.V. (AMLT). We preliminarily determine that Deacero made sales of subject merchandise at less than normal value (NV) during the POR. Additionally, we preliminarily determine that AMLT had no shipments during the POR. Interested parties are invited to comment on these preliminary results.

    DATES:

    Effective November 16, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    James Terpstra AD/CVD Operations, Office III, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone 202-482-3965.

    Background

    On December 3, 2015, the Department published a notice of initiation 1 of an administrative review of the antidumping duty order on wire rod from Mexico.2 On June 27, 2016, the Department extended the deadline for the preliminary results to November 4, 2016.3

    1See Initiation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Administrative Reviews, 80 FR 75657 (December 3, 2015).

    2See Notice of Antidumping Duty Orders: Carbon and Certain Alloy Steel Wire Rod from Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, Moldova, Trinidad and Tobago, and Ukraine, 67 FR 65945 (October 29, 2002) (Wire Rod Order).

    3See Memorandum to Christian Marsh, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations, “Carbon and Certain Alloy Steel Wire Rod from Mexico: Extension of Deadline for Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review,” dated June 27, 2016.

    Scope of the Order

    The merchandise covered by the Wire Rod Order is carbon and certain alloy steel wire rod. The product is currently classified under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) item numbers 7213.91.3000, 7213.91.3010, 7213.91.3011, 7213.91.3015, 7213.91.3020, 7213.91.3090, 7213.91.3091, 7213.91.3092, 7213.91.3093, 7213.91.4500, 7213.91.4510, 7213.91.4590, 7213.91.6000, 7213.91.6010, 7213.91.6090, 7213.99.0030, 7213.99.0031, 7213.99.0038, 7213.99.0090, 7227.20.0000, 7227.20.0010, 7227.20.0020, 7227.20.0030, 7227.20.0080, 7227.20.0090, 7227.20.0095, 7227.90.6010, 7227.90.6020, 7227.90.6030, 7227.90.6035, 7227.90.6050, 7227.90.6051, 7227.90.6053, 7227.90.6058, 7227.90.6059, 7227.90.6080, and 7227.90.6085 of the HTSUS. Although the HTS numbers are provided for convenience and customs purposes, the written product description remains dispositive.4

    4 For a complete description of the scope of the order, see Memorandum from Christian Marsh, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations, to Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance, “Decision Memorandum for Preliminary Results of 2014/15 Antidumping Duty Administrative Review: Carbon and Certain Alloy Steel Wire Rod from Mexico” (Preliminary Decision Memorandum), dated concurrently with these preliminary results.

    On October 1, 2012, the Department determined that wire rod with an actual diameter of 4.75 mm to 5.00 mm (hereinafter referred to as narrow gauge wire rod) produced in Mexico and exported to the United States by Deacero was circumventing the Wire Rod Order. 5 Specifically, the Department determined that Deacero's shipments to the United States of narrow gauge wire rod constitute merchandise altered in form or appearance in such minor respects that it should be included within the scope of the Wire Rod Order. 6 The Department's affirmative finding in the Final Circumvention Determination applied solely to Deacero.

    5See Carbon and Certain Alloy Steel Wire Rod From Mexico: Affirmative Final Determination of Circumvention of the Antidumping Order, 77 FR 59892 (October 1, 2012) (Final Circumvention Determination) and accompanying Issues and Decision Memorandum.

    6Id.

    The Federal Circuit upheld the Department's finding in the Final Circumvention Determination that narrow gauge wire rod produced in Mexico and exported to the United States by Deacero was circumventing the Wire Rod Order. 7 As a result, we have treated Deacero's sales of narrow gauge wire rod to the United States as subject merchandise.

    7See Deacero S.A. de C.V. v. United States, No. 15-1362 (Federal Circuit) (April 5, 2016) (Deacero) at 12.

    Preliminary Determination of No Shipments

    AMLT reported that it made no sales of subject merchandise during the POR.8 On December 24, 2015, we issued a no-shipment inquiry to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to confirm AMLT's claim of no shipments. We did not receive any contradictory information from CBP.9 Based on AMLT's claim of no shipments and because no information to the contrary was received by the Department from CBP, we preliminarily determine that AMLT had no shipments of subject merchandise, and, therefore, no reviewable transactions, during the POR. For a full discussion of this determination, see the Preliminary Decision Memorandum.

    8See AMLT's no-shipment certification letter, dated December 14, 2015.

    9See the Department's no-shipment inquiry message to CBP, dated December 24, 2015.

    Methodology

    The Department is conducting this review in accordance with section 751(a)(2) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act). Constructed export prices or export prices are calculated in accordance with section 772 of the Act. Normal value is calculated in accordance with section 773 of the Act.

    For a full description of the methodology underlying our conclusions, see the Preliminary Decision Memorandum. A list of topics discussed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum is included as an appendix to this notice. The Preliminary Decision Memorandum is a public document and is on file electronically via Enforcement and Compliance's Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Centralized Electronic Service System (ACCESS). ACCESS is available to registered users at https://access.trade.gov and is available to all parties in the Central Records Unit, Room B8024 of the main Department of Commerce building. In addition, a complete version of the Preliminary Decision Memorandum can be accessed directly on the Internet at http://enforcement.trade.gov/frn/index.html. The signed Preliminary Decision Memorandum and the electronic version of the Preliminary Decision Memorandum are identical in content.

    Preliminary Results of the Review

    As a result of this review, we preliminarily determine that the weighted-average dumping margin for the POR is as follows:

    Producer/exporter Weighted-average dumping margin
  • (percent)
  • Deacero S.A.P.I. de C.V. (aka Deacero S.A. de C.V.) 17.02
    Assessment Rate

    Upon issuance of the final results, the Department shall determine, and CBP shall assess, antidumping duties on all appropriate entries covered by this review. For any individually examined respondents whose weighted-average dumping margin is above de minimis, we will calculate importer-specific ad valorem duty assessment rates based on the ratio of the total amount of dumping calculated for the importer's examined sales to the total entered value of those same sales in accordance with 19 CFR 351.212(b)(1).10 We will instruct CBP to assess antidumping duties on all appropriate entries covered by this review when the importer-specific assessment rate calculated in the final results of this review is above de minimis (i.e., 0.50 percent). Where either the respondent's weighted-average dumping margin is zero or de minimis, or an importer-specific assessment rate is zero or de minimis, we will instruct CBP to liquidate the appropriate entries without regard to antidumping duties. The final results of this review shall be the basis for the assessment of antidumping duties on entries of merchandise covered by the final results of this review where applicable.

    10 In these preliminary results, the Department applied the assessment rate calculation method adopted in Antidumping Proceedings: Calculation of the Weighted-Average Dumping Margin and Assessment Rate in Certain Antidumping Proceedings: Final Modification, 77 FR 8101 (February 14, 2012).

    In accordance with the Department's “automatic assessment” practice, for entries of subject merchandise during the POR produced by each respondent for which they did not know that their merchandise was destined for the United States, we will instruct CBP to liquidate unreviewed entries at the all-others rate if there is no rate for the intermediate company(ies) involved in the transaction. For a full discussion of this clarification, see Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Proceedings: Assessment of Antidumping Duties, 68 FR 23954 (May 6, 2003).

    We intend to issue instructions to CBP 15 days after publication of the final results of this review.

    Cash Deposit Requirements

    The following cash deposit requirements will be effective upon publication of the notice of final results of administrative review for all shipments of subject merchandise entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after the publication of the final results of this administrative review, as provided by section 751(a)(2) of the Act: (1) The cash deposit rate for Deacero will be equal to the weighted-average dumping margin established in the final results of this administrative review; (2) for merchandise exported by manufacturers or exporters not covered in this administrative review but covered in a prior completed segment of the proceeding, the cash deposit rate will continue to be the company-specific rate published in the completed segment for the most recent period; (3) if the exporter is not a firm covered in this review, a prior review, or the original investigation, but the manufacturer is, the cash deposit rate will be the rate established in the completed segment for the most recent period for the manufacturer of the merchandise; and (4) the cash deposit rate for all other manufacturers or exporters will continue to be 20.11 percent, the all-others rate established in the investigation.11 These cash deposit requirements, when imposed, shall remain in effect until further notice.

    11See Notice of Final Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value: Carbon and Certain Alloy Steel Wire Rod From Mexico, 67 FR 55800 (August 30, 2002).

    Disclosure and Public Comment

    The Department intends to disclose to parties to this proceeding the calculations performed in reaching the preliminary results within five days of the date of publication of these preliminary results.12 Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.309(c)(1)(ii), interested parties may submit case briefs not later than 30 days after the date of publication of this notice. Rebuttal briefs, limited to issues raised in the case briefs, may be filed not later than five days after the date for filing case briefs.13 Parties who submit case briefs or rebuttal briefs in this proceeding are requested to submit with the argument: (1) A statement of the issue, (2) a brief summary of the argument, and (3) a table of authorities.14 All briefs must be filed electronically using ACCESS. An electronically filed document must be received successfully in its entirety by the Department's electronic records system, ACCESS.

    12See 19 CFR 351.224(b).

    13See 19 CFR 351.309(d).

    14See 19 CFR 351.309(c)(2) and (d)(2).

    Interested parties who wish to request a hearing must submit a written request to the Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance, U.S. Department of Commerce, using Enforcement and Compliance's ACCESS system within 30 days of publication of this notice.15 Requests should contain the party's name, address, and telephone number, the number of participants, and a list of the issues to be discussed. If a request for a hearing is made, we will inform parties of the scheduled date for the hearing which will be held at the U.S. Department of Commerce, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230, at a time and location to be determined.16 Parties should confirm by telephone the date, time, and location of the hearing.

    15See 19 CFR 351.310(c).

    16See 19 CFR 351.310.

    Unless the deadline is extended pursuant to section 751(a)(3)(A) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.213(h)(2), the Department will issue the final results of this administrative review, including the results of our analysis of the issues raised by the parties in their case briefs, within 120 days after issuance of these preliminary results.

    Notification to Importers

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

    These preliminary results of review are issued and published in accordance with sections 751(a)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Act.

    Dated: November 3, 2016. Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance. Appendix List of Topics Discussed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum I. Summary II. Background III. No Shipments IV. Scope of the Order V. Discussion of Methodology A. Sales Reporting B. Date of Sale C. Comparisons to Normal Value D. Product Comparisons E. Determination of Comparison Method F. Results of Differential Pricing (DP) Analysis G. U.S. Price H. Normal Value I. Cost of Production Analysis J. Affiliated Respondents K. Currency Conversion VI. Recommendation
    [FR Doc. 2016-27518 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-588-851] Certain Small Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line, and Pressure Pipe (Under 41/2 Inches) From Japan: Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review and Final Determination of No Shipments; 2014-2015 AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    On July 12, 2016, the Department of Commerce (the Department) published the preliminary results of the administrative review of the antidumping duty order on certain small diameter carbon and alloy seamless standard, line, and pressure pipe (under 41/2 inches) from Japan. The period of review (POR) is June 1, 2014, through May 31, 2015. The review covers five producers or exporters of subject merchandise. We invited parties to comment on the Preliminary Results. None were received. Accordingly, for the final results, we continue to find that that NKK Tubes (NKK) had no shipments during the POR. Further, we continue to find that subject merchandise has been sold in the United States at less than normal value by JFE Steel Corporation (JFE), Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation (NSSMC), Nippon Steel Corporation (NSC), and Sumitomo Metal Industries, Ltd. (SMI).

    DATES:

    Effective November 16, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Peter Zukowski, AD/CVD Operations, Office I, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-0189.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    On July 12, 2016, the Department published the Preliminary Results of the administrative review.1 The Department gave interested parties an opportunity to comment on the Preliminary Results. We received no comments. The Department conducted this review in accordance with section 751(a)(2) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act).

    1See Certain Small Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line, and Pressure Pipe (Under 41/2 Inches) from Japan: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review and Preliminary Determination of No Shipments; 2014-2015, 81 FR 45124 (July 12, 2016) (Preliminary Results).

    Scope of the Order

    The merchandise subject to the order is certain small diameter carbon and alloy seamless standard, line, and pressure pipe (under 41/2 inches) from Japan, which is currently classified under subheading 7304.10.10.30, 7304.10.10.45, 7304.10.10.60, 7304.10.50.50, 7304.19.10.30, 7304.19.10.45, 7304.19.10.60, 7304.19.50.50, 7304.31.60.10, 7304.31.60.50, 7304.39.00.04, 7304.39.00.06, 7304.39.00.08, 7304.39.00.36, 7304.39.00.40, 7304.39.00.44, 7304.39.00.48, 7304.39.00.52, 7304.39.00.56, 7304.39.00.62, 7304.39.00.68, 7304.39.00.72, 7304.51.50.15, 7304.51.50.45, 7304.51.50.60, 7304.59.20.30, 7304.59.20.55, 7304.59.20.60, 7304.59.20.70, 7304.59.60.00, 7304.59.80.30, 7304.59.80.35, 7304.59.80.40, 7304.59.80.45, 7304.59.80.50, 7304.59.80.55, 7304.59.80.60, 7304.59.80.65, and 7304.59.80.70 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS). Although the HTSUS subheadings are provided for convenience and customs purposes, the written description of the merchandise subject to the order is dispositive.2

    2 For a full description of the scope of the order, see the “Preliminary Decision Memorandum for the Administrative Review of the Antidumping Duty Order on Certain Small Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line, and Pressure Pipe (Under 41/2 Inches) from Japan; 2014-2015 Administrative Review” from Gary Taverman, Associate Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations, to Ronald K. Lorentzen, Acting Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance, dated July 5, 2016, which can be accessed directly at http://enforcement.trade.gov/frn/, (Preliminary Decision Memorandum).

    Final Determination of No Shipments

    As noted in the Preliminary Results, the Department received a claim of no shipments from NKK. In the Preliminary Results, the Department preliminarily found that NKK did not have reviewable entries during the POR. Additionally, the Department stated in the Preliminary Results that it was not appropriate to rescind the review with respect to NKK at that time, but rather complete the review with respect to NKK and issue appropriate instructions to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) based on the final results.

    After issuing the Preliminary Results, the Department received no comments from interested parties, and has not received any information that would cause it to alter its preliminary determination. Therefore, for these final results, the Department continues to find that NKK did not have any reviewable entries during the POR.

    Final Results of Review

    Because the Department received no comments after the Preliminary Results for consideration for these final results, we have made no changes to the Preliminary Results. As a result of this review, we determine that dumping margins on certain small diameter carbon and alloy seamless standard, line, and pressure pipe (under 41/2 inches) from Japan exist for the period June 1, 2014, through May 31, 2015, at the following rates:

    Producer and/or exporter Margin (percent) JFE Steel Corporation 106.07 Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation 106.07 Nippon Steel Corporation 106.07 Sumitomo Metals Industries 106.07 Assessment

    The Department has determined, and CBP shall assess, antidumping duties on all appropriate entries of subject merchandise in accordance with the final results of this review.3 The Department intends to issue assessment instructions to CBP 15 days after the date of publication of these final results of review. We will instruct CBP to apply an ad valorem assessment rate of 106.07 percent to all entries of subject merchandise during the POR which were produced and/or exported by NSSMC, and an ad valorem assessment rate of 106.07 percent to all entries of subject merchandise during the POR which were produced and/or exported by the companies that were not selected for individual examination: JFE, NSC, and SMI.4 Additionally, because the Department determined that NKK had no shipments of subject merchandise during the POR, any suspended entries that entered under NKK's AD case number (i.e., at that exporter's rate) will be liquidated at the all-others rate effective during the period of review if there is no rate for the intermediate company(ies) involved in the transaction.5

    3See 19 CFR 351.212(b).

    4See Preliminary Decision Memorandum at section V.b “Rate for Non-Examined Companies” (for an explanation of how we preliminarily determined the rate for non-selected companies).

    5See Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Proceedings: Assessment of Antidumping Duties, 68 FR 23954 (May 6, 2003).

    Cash Deposit Requirements

    The following deposit requirements will be effective upon publication of the notice of final results of administrative review for all shipments of certain small diameter carbon and alloy seamless standard, line, and pressure pipe (under 41/2 inches) from Japan entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after the date of publication, as provided by section 751(a)(2) of the Act: (1) The cash deposit rates for the reviewed companies will be the rates established in the final results of this review; (2) for merchandise exported by manufacturers or exporters not covered in this review but covered in a prior segment of the proceeding, the cash deposit rate will continue to be the company-specific rate published for the most recently completed segment of this proceeding; (3) if the exporter is not a firm covered in this review, a prior review, or the less-than-fair-value investigation but the manufacturer is, the cash deposit rate will be the rate established for the most recently completed segment of this proceeding for the manufacturer of the merchandise; (4) if neither the exporter nor the manufacturer has its own rate, the cash deposit rate will continue to be 70.43 percent, the all-others rate established in the order.6 These deposit requirements, when imposed, shall remain in effect until further notice.

    6See Notice of Antidumping Duty Orders: Certain Large Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line and Pressure Pipe from Japan; and Certain Small Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line and Pressure Pipe From Japan and the Republic of South Africa, 65 FR 39360 (June 26, 2000).

    Notification to Importers

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

    Administrative Protective Orders

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

    We are issuing and publishing these results in accordance with sections 751(a)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Act.

    Dated: November 9, 2016. Paul Piquado, Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27520 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration Smart Technologies Trade Mission to Taiwan and Hong Kong With an Optional Stop in Guangzhou (China) April 24-28, 2017. AGENCY:

    International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The United States Department of Commerce, International Trade Administration (ITA), is organizing a Trade Mission to Taiwan and Hong Kong, with an optional stop in Guangzhou (China), focused on Smart Technologies in the Information and Communication Technology Sector on April 24-28, 2017. The goal of this trade mission is to provide U.S. participants with first-hand market information and one-on-one meetings with technology partners in Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Guangzhou, including potential agents and distributors of smart technologies, so they can position themselves to enter or expand their presence in those markets.

    The mission is intended to help expand U.S. exports to Hong Kong, Taiwan, and China for U.S. technology providers of smart transportation, smart building and financial technology (fintech). The mission will introduce these suppliers to business partners, industry representatives, and government officials in Taiwan and Hong Kong, with an optional stop in Guangzhou (for smart transportation and smart building only) to learn about and benefit from various smart city projects and opportunities in these respective cities. Increasingly, smart city technologies are seen as means to keep metropolitan and national economies competitive. A smart city market research report published by Navigant in 2014 forecast that the annual smart city technology investment in the Greater China region (China, Taiwan and Hong Kong) will grow from US$1 billion to US$5 billion by 2023. This figure represents only the smart technology part of much larger smart city projects across different industries and sectors, such as:

    • Smart sensors and meters • dedicated networks • cloud computing platforms • data analytics, and • integrated systems and applications

    The trade mission offers a timely and cost effective way of engaging key stakeholders in the development of smart city projects in Greater China. Trade mission participants will have the opportunity to interact extensively with host government, private sector and Commercial Service (CS) officials in Taiwan and Hong Kong to discuss industry developments, business opportunities and market entry strategies. In addition, participants with smart transportation and smart building technologies may opt to receive similar briefing and meeting opportunities in Guangzhou, China for an additional cost.

    In Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Guangzhou (optional), participants will meet with pre-screened distributors, corporate representatives, and other business partners and government organizations involved in the promotion of smart technologies. They will also attend market briefings by U.S. Commercial Service and Consulate officials, as well as round table discussions offering further opportunities to speak with local business and industry decision-makers.

    Schedule
    April 23, Sunday Delegates arrive in Taiwan. April 24, Monday 1 Day in Taiwan. April 25, Tuesday 1/2 Day in Taiwan.
  • Travel to Hong Kong.
  • April 26, Wednesday 1 Day in Hong Kong. April 27, Thursday 1/2 Day in Hong Kong.
  • Travel to Guangzhou (Optional).
  • April 28, Friday 1 Day in Guangzhou (Optional). April 29, Saturday Delegates depart.
    Participation Requirements

    All parties interested in participating in the trade mission to Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Guangzhou (Optional) must complete and submit an application package for consideration by the Department of Commerce. All applicants, on a staggered basis, will be evaluated on their ability to meet certain conditions and best satisfy the selection criteria as outlined below. U.S. companies or trade associations already doing business in Taiwan, Hong Kong, and China, as well as U.S. companies/trade associations seeking to enter those markets for the first time may apply. A minimum of 15 and maximum of 20 firms and/or trade associations will be selected to participate in the mission from the applicant pool.

    Fees and Expenses

    After a firm or trade association has been selected to participate on the mission, a payment to the Department of Commerce in the form of a participation fee is required. The participation fee for the Trade Mission will be $3,700 for small or medium-sized enterprises (SME); 1 and $4,700 for large firms or trade associations. The cost for the optional stop in Guangzhou for smart transportation and smart building firms is not included and is an additional $750 per SME and $2,300 per large firm and trade association/organization. The fee for each additional firm representative for the mission and optional stop (large firm or SME/trade organization) is $1,000. Upon notification of acceptance to participate, those selected have 10 business days to submit payment or after such time the Department of Commerce reserves the right to revoke the acceptance or may offer the participant spot to other qualified applicants. Expenses for travel, lodging, meals, and incidentals will be the responsibility of each mission participant. Interpreter and driver services can be arranged for additional cost. The participation fee will cover group transit from hotel to airport/train station on departure from each destination as well as local group transportation to meeting venues, where applicable. Delegation members will be able to take advantage of U.S. Embassy rates for hotel rooms.

    1 An SME is defined as a firm with 500 or fewer employees or that otherwise qualifies as a small business under SBA regulations (see http://www.sba.gov/services/contractingopportunities/sizestandardstopics/index.html). Parent companies, affiliates, and subsidiaries will be considered when determining business size. The dual pricing reflects the Commercial Service's user fee schedule that became effective May 1, 2008 (See http://www.export.gov/newsletter/march2008/initiatives.html for additional information).

    Exclusions

    The mission fee does not include any personal travel expenses such as lodging, most meals, local ground transportation and air transportation. Delegate members will, however, be able to take advantage of U.S. Government rates for hotel rooms. Government fees and processing expenses to obtain visas are also not included in the mission costs. However, the Department of Commerce will provide instructions to each participant on the procedures required to obtain necessary business visas. Trade Mission members participate in the trade mission and undertake mission-related travel at their own risk. The nature of the security situation in a given foreign market at a given time cannot be guaranteed. The U.S. Government does not make any representations or guarantees as to the safety or security of participants. The U.S. Department of State issues U.S. Government international travel alerts and warnings for U.S. citizens available at https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/alertswarnings.html. Any question regarding insurance coverage must be resolved by the participant and its insurer of choice.

    Conditions for Participation

    An applicant must submit a completed and signed mission application and supplemental application materials, including adequate information on the company's products and/or services, primary market objectives, and goals for participation. If the Department of Commerce receives an incomplete application, the Department may reject the application, request additional information, or take the lack of information into account when evaluating the applications.

    Each applicant must also certify that the products and services it seeks to export through the mission are either produced in the U.S., or, if not, are marketed under the name of a U.S. firm and have at least fifty-one percent U.S. content. In the case of a trade association or organization, the applicant must certify that for each company to be represented by the association/organization, the products and/or services the represented company seeks to export are either produced in the U.S. or, if not, marketed under the name of a U.S. firm and have at least fifty-one percent U.S. content.

    In addition, each applicant must:

    • Certify that the products and services that it wishes to market through the mission would be in compliance with U.S. export controls and regulations;

    • Certify that it has identified to the Department of Commerce for its evaluation any business pending before the Department that may present the appearance of a conflict of interest;

    • Certify that it has identified any pending litigation (including any administrative proceedings) to which it is a party that involves the Department of Commerce; and

    • Sign and submit an agreement that it and its affiliates (1) have not and will not engage in the bribery of foreign officials in connection with a company's/participant's involvement in this mission, and (2) maintain and enforce a policy that prohibits the bribery of foreign officials.

    In the case of a trade association/organization, the applicant must certify that each firm or service provider to be represented by the association/organization can make the above certifications.

    Selection Criteria for Participation

    • Suitability of the company's (or, in the case of a trade association or trade organization, represented companies') products or services to the market.

    • Company's (or, in the case of a trade association or trade organization, represented companies') potential for business in the country and region, including likelihood of exports resulting from the mission.

    • Consistency of the applicant's goals and objectives with the stated scope of the mission. Balance of company size, sector or subsector, and location may also be considered during the review process.

    Referrals from political organizations and any documents containing references to partisan political activities (including political contributions) will be removed from an applicant's submission and not considered during the selection process.

    Timeline for Recruitment and Applications

    Mission recruitment will be conducted in an open and public manner, including publication in the Federal Register, posting on the Commerce Department trade mission calendar (http://export.gov/trademissions) and other Internet Web sites, press releases to general and trade media, direct mail, notices by industry trade associations and other multiplier groups, and publicity at industry meetings, symposia, conferences, and trade shows. Recruitment for the mission will begin immediately and conclude no later than January 31, 2017. The U.S. Department of Commerce will review applications and inform applicants of selection decisions on a staggered basis during the recruitment period beginning October 7, 2016. Applications received after January 31, 2017, will be considered only if space and scheduling constraints permit.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Gemal Brangman, Trade Promotion Programs Team Lead, U.S. Department of Commerce, Washington, DC, Tel: 202-482-3773, Email: [email protected]

    Frank Spector, Trade Missions Program.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27556 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DR-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XF004 Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Meeting of the Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Advisory Panel AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice of public meeting and webinar/conference call.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS will hold a 2-day Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Advisory Panel (AP) meeting in December 2016. The intent of the meeting is to consider options for the conservation and management of Atlantic HMS, specifically Amendment 5b to the 2006 Consolidated Atlantic HMS Fishery Management Plan (FMP). The meeting is open to the public.

    DATES:

    The AP meeting and webinar will be held from 1:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, December 1, 2016, and from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Friday, December 2, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting will be held at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, 8120 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, MD 20814. The meeting presentations will also be available via WebEx webinar/conference call.

    The meeting on Thursday, December 1, and Friday, December 2, 2016, will also be accessible via conference call and webinar. Conference call and webinar access information are available at: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/sfa/hms/advisory_panels/hms_ap/meetings/dec-2016/ap-meeting.html.

    Participants are strongly encouraged to log/dial in 15 minutes prior to the meeting. NMFS will show the presentations via webinar and allow public comment during identified times on the agenda.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Peter Cooper or Margo Schulze-Haugen at (301) 427-8503.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, 16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq., as amended by the Sustainable Fisheries Act, Public Law 104-297, provided for the establishment of an AP to assist in the collection and evaluation of information relevant to the development of any FMP or FMP amendment for Atlantic HMS. NMFS consults with and considers the comments and views of AP members when preparing and implementing FMPs or FMP amendments for Atlantic tunas, swordfish, billfish, and sharks.

    The AP has previously consulted with NMFS on: Amendment 1 to the Billfish FMP (April 1999); the HMS FMP (April 1999); Amendment 1 to the HMS FMP (December 2003); the Consolidated HMS FMP (October 2006); and Amendments 1, 2, 3, 4, 5a, 5b, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 to the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP (April and October 2008, February and September 2009, May and September 2010, April and September 2011, March and September 2012, January and September 2013, April and September 2014, March and September 2015, March and September 2016), among other things.

    The intent of this meeting is for NMFS to consult with the AP on the proposed management measures contained in Draft Amendment 5b to the 2006 Consolidated Atlantic HMS FMP, which proposes a range of management measures to prevent overfishing and rebuild dusky sharks. These measures are based on a recent stock assessment that determined dusky sharks—a prohibited species since 2000—are overfished and still experiencing overfishing. Draft Amendment 5b could affect any commercial fishermen with HMS permits, any recreational fishermen who catch sharks of any species, and any dealers who buy or sell sharks or shark products.

    Additional information on the meeting and a copy of the draft agenda will be posted prior to the meeting at: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/sfa/hms/advisory_panels/hms_ap/meetings/ap_meetings.html.

    Special Accommodations

    This meeting is physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to Peter Cooper at (301) 427-8503 at least 7 days prior to the meeting.

    Dated: November 9, 2016. Jennifer M. Wallace, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27473 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-BC69 Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to the Elliot Bay Seawall Project in Seattle, Washington AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice of issuance of a Letter of Authorization.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with regulations implementing the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), as amended, notification is hereby given that a Letter of Authorization (LOA) has been issued to the City of Seattle's Department of Transportation (SDOT) for the take of eight species of marine mammals incidental to pile driving activities associated with the Elliot Bay Seawall Project (EBSP).

    DATES:

    Effective for a period of one year from November 16, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    The LOA and supporting documentation are available for review online at: www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental/construction.htm. Documents cited in this notice may also be viewed, by appointment, during regular business hours at the Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910-3225, by telephoning the contact listed below.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Stephanie Egger, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, 301-427-8401.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    Section 101(a)(5)(A) of the MMPA (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.) directs 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 regulations are issued. Under the MMPA, the term “take” means to harass, hunt, capture, or kill marine mammals. Authorization for incidental takings shall be granted if NMFS finds that the taking will have a negligible impact on the identified 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 in the regulations. 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.”

    Regulations governing the taking of harbor seals (Phoca vitulina richardii), California sea lions (Zalophus californianus), Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus monteriensis), harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena vomerina), Dall's porpoise (Phocoenoides dalli dalli), southern resident and transient killer whales (Orcinus orca), gray whales (Eschrichtius robustus), and humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae), by harassment, incidental to pile driving activities in Elliot Bay for the EBSP, were issued on October 21, 2013, and remain in effect until October 21, 2018. The regulations include mitigation, monitoring, and reporting requirements for the incidental take of marine mammals during pile driving activities associated with the EBSP. For detailed information on this action, please refer to the Federal Register Notice for the regulations at 78 FR 63396 (October 24, 2013).

    Pursuant to those regulations, NMFS issued an LOA, effective from October 22, 2013, through October 21, 2014, a second LOA, effective from October 22, 2014, through October 21, 2015, and a third LOA, effective October 22, 2015, through August 31, 2016. SDOT conducted activities as described, implemented the required mitigation methods, and conducted the required monitoring. NMFS announces here that it has issued a fourth LOA, effective for one year, beginning November 16, 2016.

    Monitoring Reports

    According to prior monitoring reports, no marine mammals entered the Level A harassment zone during the first year of the project (2013-2014 LOA). Two marine mammals entered the Level A harassment zone during the second year (2014-2015 LOA), but work was stopped or not initiated until the animal left the Level A harassment zone. Six killer whales were observed in the Level A harassment zone during the third year of the project (2015-2016 LOA), but pile activity was not occurring at the time. Low-frequency cetaceans (e.g., humpback whales, gray whales) have rarely been observed during the past three years of this project (one humpback in the 2015-2016 LOA and the 2014-2015 LOA). No gray whales have been observed. Low numbers of high- and mid-frequency cetaceans (e.g., harbor porpoise and killer whales, respectively) have been observed within the Level A harassment zone, but only one animal of each species was documented as take (Level B harassment) during the 2015-2016 LOA, significantly below the maximum number of takes authorized per year (40 and 315, respectively). There were no observed takes of harbor porpoises or killer whales in the 2014-2015 LOA or the 2013-2014 LOA.

    Pinnipeds are more likely to be present in the construction area and to approach more closely. However, California sea lions (the pinniped species with the most documented takes), rested on the mooring buoys during construction and throughout the entire monitoring period on most days. These mooring buoys are well outside the SDOT's Level A harassment zones (under NMFS' then-current thresholds) for all pinnipeds and occur approximately two miles from these zones. The total number of potentially harassed marine mammals was well below the authorized limits, with the exception of the California sea lion in the 2014-2015 LOA (Year 2 LOA). The reported take for California sea lions for the Year 2 LOA by Level B harassment only, exceeded the annually authorized level, and slightly exceeded the authorized level in the Year 1 LOA, but not in the 2015-2016 LOA (Year 3 LOA). Please see the monitoring reports at http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental/construction.htm for more detail. The exceeded take in the Year 2 LOA resulted in part because of an error in our assumptions relating to the proposed take estimates in the rule, i.e., the number of California sea lions regularly hauling out on buoys in Elliot Bay.

    Analysis

    Based on our review of monitoring to date, we revised take estimates by assuming an estimated daily exposure of up to seven California sea lions (as compared with five assumed in regulations).

    This revised estimate of take constitutes 0.14 percent of the population of California sea lions, which is 0.09 percent greater than the estimated take in the rule, and is the same kind of take anticipated in the regulations. Accordingly, the anticipated taking remains consistent with the basis for our final rule determinations of negligible impact based on the total taking and of small numbers, and our subsistence findings for the specified activity.

    Technical Guidance for Assessing the Effects of Anthropogenic Sound on Marine Mammal Hearing

    In August 2016, NMFS released its Technical Guidance for Assessing the Effects of Anthropogenic Sound on Marine Mammal Hearing (Guidance), which established new thresholds for predicting auditory injury, which equates to Level A harassment under the MMPA. In the August 4, 2016, Federal Register notice announcing the Guidance (81 FR 51694), NMFS explained the approach it would take during a transition period, wherein we balance the need to consider this new best available science with the fact that some applicants have already committed time and resources to the development of acoustic analyses based on our previous thresholds and have constraints that preclude the recalculation of take estimates, as well as consideration of where the agency is in the decision-making pipeline. In that notice, we included a non-exhaustive list of factors that would inform the most appropriate approach for considering the new Guidance, including: How far in the MMPA process the applicant has progressed; the scope of the effects; when the authorization is needed; the cost and complexity of the analysis; and the degree to which the Guidance is expected to affect our analysis.

    In this case, SDOT submitted a timely request for an LOA that was determined to be adequate and complete prior to availability of the Guidance and indicated that they would need to receive their fourth (final) LOA (if issued) by fall 2016. The incidental take rule for SDOT's activities considered the potential for auditory injury to marine mammals, and concluded that injury would be unlikely to occur due to SDOT's mitigation measures and SDOT's observed success of those measures as implemented previously. As described in the preamble of the regulations (78 FR 63396), the SDOT calculated Level A harassment and the Level A harassment mitigation zones on the basis of NMFS' then-current thresholds for onset of P (i.e., 180/190 dB rms) (PTS).

    Following release of the Guidance, we considered the updated thresholds and found that the distances at which animals might be exposed to injury fall mostly within the mitigation zones, and therefore the likelihood of auditory injury of marine mammals is still low. However, to further reduce the likelihood in light of the Guidance, the SDOT will now implement a 61meter (m) exclusion zone for high frequency cetaceans and a 25 m exclusion zone for pinnipeds (inclusive of both phocids and otariids) during vibratory pile driving, which is larger than the PTS isopleth indicated by the Guidance for otariids. As an addition to their monitoring plan, the SDOT will use Internet sites that track whale activity in Puget Sound prior to and during monitoring shifts in anticipation of any cetacean that may enter the Level A/B harassment zones. In summary, we have considered the new Guidance and believe that the likelihood of injury is adequately addressed in the analysis and appropriate protective measures are in place in the LOA.

    Authorization

    NMFS has issued an LOA to SDOT authorizing the Level B harassment of marine mammals incidental to pile driving activities associated with the EBSP at Seattle, WA. Take of marine mammals will be minimized through implementation of the following mitigation measures: (1) Limited impact pile driving; (2) containment of impact pile driving; (3) additional sound attenuation measures; (4) ramp-up of pile-related activities; (5) marine mammal exclusion zones; and (6) shutdown and delay procedures. SDOT will also conduct visual monitoring and underwater acoustic monitoring for mitigation and research purposes. Reports will be submitted to NMFS at the time of request for a renewal of the LOA, and a final comprehensive report, which will summarize all previous reports and assess cumulative impacts, will be submitted before the rule expires.

    Issuance of this LOA takes into consideration the results of the monitoring reports as well as NMFS' Guidance on hearing impacts from anthropogenic acoustic sources. Based on that information and the information discussed in the rule making for the five-year regulations, the activities described under the LOA and the level of anticipated taking is consistent with the findings made for the total taking allowable under the regulations, the project activities will have a negligible impact on the affected marine mammal species or stocks and will not have an unmitigable adverse impact on their availability for subsistence uses.

    Dated: November 9, 2016. Donna S. Wieting, Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27464 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Large Pelagic Fishing Survey 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 January 17, 2017.

    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 John Foster, (301) 427-8130 or [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Abstract

    This request is for extension of a currently approved information collection. The Large Pelagic Fishing Survey consists of dockside and telephone surveys of recreational anglers for large pelagic fish (tunas, sharks, and billfish) in the Atlantic Ocean. The survey provides the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) with information to monitor catch of bluefin tuna, marlin and other federally managed species. Catch monitoring in these fisheries and collection of catch and effort statistics for all pelagic fish is required under the Atlantic Tunas Convention Act and the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. The information collected is essential for the United States (U.S.) to meet its reporting obligations to the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tuna.

    II. Method of Collection

    Dockside and telephone interviews are used. In lieu of telephone interviews, respondents may also provide information online via a Web tool.

    III. Data

    OMB Control Number: 0648-0380.

    Form Number: None.

    Type of Review: Regular submission (extension of a current information collection).

    Affected Public: Individuals or households; business or other for-profit organizations.

    Estimated Number of Unduplicated Respondents: 15,024.

    Estimated Time per Response: 11 minutes for a telephone interview; 5 minutes for a dockside interview; 11/2 minutes to respond to a follow-up validation call for dockside interviews; 1 minute for a biological sampling of catch.

    Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 3,608.

    Estimated Total Annual Cost to Public: $0 in recordkeeping/reporting 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: November 9, 2016. Sarah Brabson, NOAA PRA Clearance Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27465 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XE943 Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Exempted Fishing, Scientific Research, Display, Shark Research Fishery, and Chartering Permits; Letters of Acknowledgment AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice of intent; request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS announces its intent to issue exempted fishing permits (EFPs), scientific research permits (SRPs), display permits, letters of acknowledgment (LOAs), shark research fishery permits, and chartering permits for Atlantic highly migratory species (HMS) in 2017. EFPs and related permits would authorize collection of a limited number of tunas, swordfish, billfishes, and sharks (collectively known as HMS) from Federal waters in the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea, and Gulf of Mexico for the purposes of scientific data collection, bycatch research, public display, and to evaluate the efficacy of environmental clean-up efforts, among other things. LOAs acknowledge that scientific research activity aboard a scientific research vessel is being conducted. Chartering permits allow the owner of a U.S. fishing vessel to fish under a chartering arrangement, which is a contract or agreement between a U.S. vessel owner and a foreign entity by which the control, use, or services of a vessel are secured for a period of time for fishing for Atlantic HMS on the high seas or in the Exclusive Economic Zone of other nations. Generally, EFPs and related permits would be valid from the date of issuance through December 31, 2017, unless otherwise specified, subject to the terms and conditions of individual permits.

    DATES:

    Written comments on these activities received in response to this notice will be considered by NMFS when issuing EFPs and related permits and must be received on or before December 16, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments may be submitted by any of the following methods:

    Email: [email protected] Include in the subject line the following identifier: 0648-XE943.

    Mail: Craig Cockrell, Highly Migratory Species Management Division (F/SF1), NMFS, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Craig Cockrell, phone: (301) 427-8503.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Issuance of EFPs and related permits are necessary because HMS regulations (e.g., fishing seasons, prohibited species, authorized gear, closed areas, and minimum sizes) may otherwise prohibit the collection of live animals and/or biological samples for data collection and public display purposes or may otherwise prohibit certain fishing activity. Pursuant to 50 CFR parts 600 and 635, a NMFS Regional Administrator or Director may authorize, for limited testing, public display, data collection, exploratory fishing, compensation fishing, conservation engineering, health and safety surveys, environmental cleanup, and/or hazard removal purposes, the target or incidental harvest of species managed under an FMP or fishery regulations that would otherwise be prohibited. These permits exempt permit holders from the specific portions of the regulations (e.g., fishing seasons, prohibited species, authorized gear, closed areas, and minimum sizes) that may otherwise prohibit the collection of HMS for public education, public display, or scientific research. Permit holders are not exempted from the regulations in entirety. Collection of HMS under EFPs, SRPs, LOAs, display, shark research fishery, and chartering permits represents a small portion of the overall fishing mortality for HMS, and this mortality is counted against the quota of the species harvested, as appropriate and applicable. The terms and conditions of individual permits are unique; however, all permits will include reporting requirements, limit the number and/or species of HMS to be collected, and only authorize collection in Federal waters of the Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico, and Caribbean Sea.

    EFPs and related permits are issued under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Reauthorization Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act) (16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.) and/or the Atlantic Tunas Convention Act (ATCA) (16 U.S.C. 971 et seq.). Regulations at 50 CFR 600.745 and 635.32 govern scientific research activity, exempted fishing, chartering arrangements, and exempted public display and educational activities with respect to Atlantic HMS. Before issuing LOAs, EFPs, or SRPs, NMFS requests, among other things, copies of scientific research plans. Because the Magnuson-Stevens Act states that scientific research activity which is conducted on a scientific research vessel is not fishing, NMFS issues LOAs and not EFPs for bona fide research activities (e.g., scientific research being conducted from a research vessel and not a commercial or recreational fishing vessel) involving species that are only regulated under the Magnuson-Stevens Act (e.g., most species of sharks) and not under ATCA. NMFS generally does not consider recreational or commercial vessels to be bona fide research vessels. However, if the vessels have been contracted only to conduct research and not participate in any commercial or recreational fishing activities during that research, NMFS may consider those vessels as bona fide research platforms while conducting the specified research. For example, in the past, NMFS has determined that commercial pelagic longline vessels assisting with population surveys for sharks may be considered “bona fide research vessels” while engaged only in the specified research. NMFS acknowledges that the proposed activity meets the definition of scientific research under the Magnuson-Stevens Act and not ATCA by issuing an LOA to researchers. Examples of research conducted under LOAs include tagging and releasing of sharks during bottom longline surveys to understand the distribution and seasonal abundance of different shark species, and collecting and sampling sharks caught during trawl surveys for life history and bycatch studies.

    While scientific research is exempt under MSA, scientific research is not exempt from regulation under ATCA. Therefore, NMFS issues SRPs which authorize researchers to collect HMS from bona fide research vessels for collection of species managed under this statute (e.g., tunas, swordfish, billfish, and some species of sharks). One example of research conducted under SRPs consists of scientific surveys of HMS conducted from NOAA research vessels.

    EFPs are issued to researchers collecting ATCA and Magnuson-Stevens Act-managed species while conducting research from commercial or recreational fishing vessels. Examples of research conducted under EFPs include collection of young-of-the-year bluefin tuna for genetic research; conducting billfish larval tows from private vessels to determine billfish habitat use, life history, and population structure; determining catch rates and gear characteristics of the swordfish buoy gear fishery and the green-stick tuna fishery; and tagging sharks caught on commercial or recreational fishing gear to determining post-release mortality rates.

    NMFS is also seeking public comment on its intent to issue display permits for the collection of sharks and other HMS for public display in 2017. Collection of sharks and other HMS sought for public display in aquaria often involves collection when the commercial fishing seasons are closed, collection of otherwise prohibited species (e.g., sand tiger sharks), and collection of fish below the regulatory minimum size. Under Amendment 2 to the 2006 Consolidated Atlantic HMS Fishery Management Plan, NMFS determined that dusky sharks cannot be collected for public display.

    The majority of EFPs and related permits described in this annual notice relate to scientific sampling and tagging of Atlantic HMS within existing quotas and the impacts of the activities have been previously analyzed in various environmental assessments and environmental impact statements for Atlantic HMS. NMFS intends to issue these permits without additional opportunity for public comment beyond what is provided in this notice. Occasionally, NMFS receives applications for research activities that were not anticipated, or for research that is outside the scope of general scientific sampling and tagging of Atlantic HMS, or rarely, for research that is particularly controversial. Should NMFS receive such applications, NMFS will provide additional opportunity for public comment, consistent with the regulations at 50 CFR 600.745.

    In 2016, as in recent years, NMFS received several requests from researchers who were collaborating with the research group OCEARCH to conduct shark research. However, later in the year, NMFS also received an application from OCEARCH indicating its intent to conduct shark research in collaboration with a number of scientists. Specifically, OCEARCH indicated its intent to coordinate all shark research it was involved in rather than require each individual scientist to apply for and receive their own EFP or SRP. In July 2016, NMFS issued an SRP to OCEARCH to tag and collect tissue samples from a variety sharks in Federal waters, including white, tiger, great hammerhead, smooth hammerhead, bull, sand tiger, shortfin mako, longfin mako, oceanic whitetip, blue, silky, and Caribbean reef sharks. Among other research conducted under this permit, eight juvenile white sharks were tagged with satellite or “smart position only” tags off New York in August. Because the original permit provided authorization to tag only eight white sharks, and because there were still several more research trips planned, at the request of the research group, NMFS amended the permit to add an additional 25 white sharks in late August. In mid-September, OCEARCH moved to Federal waters off the coast of Massachusetts and began their tagging and collection activities. Earlier in 2016, because the Commonwealth of Massachusetts was in the process of conducting a mark-recapture study to assess the population and movement pattern of white sharks in their state waters, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts denied OCEARCH access to state waters. Once OCEARCH began conducting research in Federal waters just outside of Massachusetts state waters, the state and other organizations expressed concern regarding the potential impact of OCEARCH's tagging activities on the mark-recapture study. If OCEARCH requests another group collaboration permit in 2017 or if individual researchers request the addition of OCEARCH on their permit in 2017, NMFS may issue a consolidated permit for all researchers utilizing this platform and would consider the concerns regarding the mark-recapture study, any concerns expressed during the comment period of this notice, and any other relevant information when deciding to issue the permit and associated permit conditions. Note, however, that the recent final rule modifying archival tag permitting and reporting requirements (August 19, 2016, 81 FR 55376) may mean that an EFP or SRP may no longer be needed for OCEARCH tagging activities as archival tagging activities, which is a primary focus of OCEARCH research, no longer require written authorization from NMFS.

    In 2017, NMFS may once again receive an application for an EFP regarding purse seine fishing for Atlantic bluefin tuna. NMFS provided such an EFP to a purse seine vessel in 2014 and 2015 to study bycatch of large medium Atlantic bluefin tuna during otherwise authorized purse seine fishing operations. Specifically, the EFPs exempted the vessel owner from the retention limits on large medium BFT during otherwise authorized fishing operations. NMFS last issued a notice of intent regarding a potential purse seine EFP in 2014 (79 FR 63896, October 27, 2014), and did not receive any comments. NMFS issued the EFP for the 2015 fishing season on June 5, exempting the vessel from the size limit, with the following terms and conditions: (1) Mandatory observer coverage on all trips, (2) all dead bluefin tuna at haul back must be available to observers for sampling, (3) sub-legal bluefin tuna that are released alive and in good condition will not be counted against the vessel's quota, (4) any sub-legal bluefin tuna that are dead at haulback may not be released by the vessel operator, and (5) only the observer has discretion over dead sub-legal fish that may be released without sampling.

    Compared to the dead discards that occurred in 2013, while fishing under an EFP in 2014 and 2015, the overall reduction in dead discards was 69 and 64 percent, respectively. In 2016, NMFS received a similar application to the 2015 request but, as of preparation of this notice, NMFS had not issued a 2016 EFP because the vessel to be used for the exempted fishing had not been issued a valid 2016 Atlantic Tunas permit in the Purse Seine category, and thus no otherwise authorized fishing could occur warranting a study of associated bycatch. NMFS may receive a similar request for an EFP in 2017 and requests comments, via this notice, on the continuation of such an EFP with similar terms and conditions should the permit holder have a properly permitted Purse Seine vessel. If such an application requests exemptions that are significantly different than those provided in the 2014 and 2015 permits, NMFS will provide additional opportunity for public comment.

    NMFS is also requesting comments on chartering permits considered for issuance in 2017 to U.S. vessels fishing for HMS while operating under chartering arrangements with foreign countries. NMFS has not issued any chartering permits since 2004. A chartering arrangement is a contract or agreement between a U.S. vessel owner and a foreign entity by which the control, use, or services of a vessel are secured for a period of time for fishing for Atlantic HMS. Before fishing under a chartering arrangement, the owner of the U.S. fishing vessel must apply for a chartering permit and must also have been issued all other appropriate permits. The vessel chartering regulations can be found at 50 CFR 635.5(a)(4) and 635.32(e).

    In addition, Amendment 2 to the 2006 Consolidated HMS Fishery Management Plan (FMP) implemented a shark research fishery. This research fishery is conducted under the auspices of the exempted fishing permit program. Shark research fishery permit holders assist NMFS in collecting valuable shark life history and other scientific data required in shark stock assessments. Since the shark research fishery was established in 2008, the research fishery has allowed for: The collection of fishery dependent data for current and future stock assessments; the operation of cooperative research to meet NMFS' ongoing research objectives; the collection of updated life-history information used in the sandbar shark (and other species) stock assessment; the collection of data on habitat preferences that might help reduce fishery interactions through bycatch mitigation; the evaluation of the utility of the mid-Atlantic closed area on the recovery of dusky sharks; and the collection of hook-timer and pop-up satellite archival tag information to determine at-vessel and post-release mortality of dusky sharks. Fishermen who wish to participate must fill out an application for a shark research permit under the exempted fishing program. Shark research fishery participants are subject to 100-percent observer coverage. All non-prohibited shark species brought back to the vessel dead must be retained and will count against the appropriate quotas of the shark research fishery participant. During the 2016 shark research fishery, all participants were limited to a very small number of dusky shark mortalities on a regional basis. Once the number of mortalities occurs in a specific region all shark research fishery activities must stop within that region. Also, participants are limited to two sets per trip with, one set limited to 150 hooks and the second set limited to 300 hooks. All participants are also limited to a maximum of 500 hooks onboard the vessel with on a shark research fishery trip. A Federal Register notice describing the specific objectives for the shark research fishery in 2017 and requesting applications from interested and eligible shark fishermen is expected to publish in the near future. NMFS requests public comment regarding NMFS' intent to issue shark research fishery permits in 2017 during the comment period of this notice.

    The authorized number of species for 2016, as well as the number of specimens collected in 2015, is summarized in Table 1. The number of specimens collected in 2016 will be available when all 2016 interim and annual reports are submitted to NMFS. In 2015, the number of specimens collected was less than the number of authorized specimens for all permit types, other than SRPs issued for shark research. The slightly higher numbers (21 sharks) are attributed to slightly more interactions with Atlantic sharpnose sharks on longline gear than anticipated. It is difficult to control the number and species of animals caught when using this gear type. These 21 sharks account for approximately 0.1 percent of the 57.2-mt ww quota available for the collection of most shark species under EFPs and related permits. Atlantic sharpnose sharks were determined to be not overfished and not experiencing overfishing in a 2013 stock assessment. Given the status of the species, the small number of Atlantic sharpnose sharks harvested above the authorized level, and the fact that the total number of sharks harvested across all permits is still less than the overall quota, this overharvest is not expected to have negative ecological impacts on the stock.

    In all cases, mortality associated with an EFP, SRP, Display Permit, or LOA (except for larvae) is counted against the appropriate quota. NMFS issued a total of 36 EFPs, SRPs, display permits, and LOAs in 2015 for the collection of HMS and a total of 5 shark research fishery permits. As of October 4, 2016, NMFS has issued a total of 39 EFPs, SRPs, display permits, and LOAs and a total of 5 shark research fishery permits.

    Table 1—Summary of HMS Exempted Fishing Permits Issued in 2015 and 2016, Other Than Shark Research Fishery Permits [“HMS” refers to multiple species being collected under a given permit type] Permit type 2015 Permits
  • issued
  • Authorized fish
  • (num)
  • Authorized larvae
  • (num)
  • Fish kept/
  • discarded dead
  • (num)
  • Larvae kept
  • (num)
  • 2016 Permits
  • issued
  • Authorized
  • fish
  • (num)
  • Authorized
  • larvae
  • (num)
  • EFP HMS 4 207 0 5 0 4 247 0 Shark 11 1,192 0 79 0 12 721 0 Tuna 3 928 0 0 0 4 530 0 Billfish SRP HMS 1 480 0 57 0 1 42 0 Shark 4 875 0 896 0 5 1,165 0 Tuna 1 60 0 0 0 1 60 0 Display HMS 1 67 0 9 0 Shark 3 114 0 17 0 3 109 0 Total 28 3,923 0 1,063 0 30 2,874 0 LOA * Shark 8 2,205 0 1,776 0 9 2,906 0 * LOAs are issued for bona fide scientific research activities involving non-ATCA managed species (e.g., most species of sharks). Collections made under an LOA are not authorized; rather this estimated harvest for research is acknowledged by NMFS. Permittees are encouraged to report all fishing activities in a timely manner.

    Final decisions on the issuance of any EFPs, SRPs, display permits, shark research fishery permits, and chartering permits will depend on the submission of all required information about the proposed activities, NMFS' review of public comments received on this notice, an applicant's reporting history on past permits, if vessels or applicants were issued any prior violations of marine resource laws administered by NOAA, consistency with relevant NEPA documents, and any consultations with appropriate Regional Fishery Management Councils, states, or Federal agencies. NMFS does not anticipate any significant environmental impacts from the issuance of these EFPs as assessed in the 1999 FMP, the 2006 Consolidated HMS FMP and its amendments, the Environmental Assessment for the 2012 Swordfish Specifications, and the Environmental Assessment for the 2015 Final Bluefin Tuna Quota and Atlantic Tuna Fisheries Management Measures.

    Authority:

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

    Dated: November 9, 2016. Jennifer M. Wallace, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27466 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XF041 North Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice of public meetings.

    SUMMARY:

    The North Pacific Fishery Management Council (Council) and its advisory committees will meet December 6 through December 14, 2016 in Anchorage, AK.

    DATES:

    The Council and its advisory committees will hold meetings Tuesday, December 6 through Wednesday, December 14, 2016. See SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION for specific dates and times.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting will be held at the Anchorage Hilton Hotel, 500 W. 3rd Ave., Anchorage, AK 99501.

    Council address: North Pacific Fishery Management Council, 605 W. 4th Ave., Suite 306, Anchorage, AK 99501-2252; telephone: (907) 271-2809.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    David Witherell, Council staff; telephone: (907) 271-2809.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Council will begin its plenary session at 8 a.m. in the Aleutian Room on Thursday, December 8, continuing through Wednesday, December 14, 2016. The Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) will begin at 8 a.m. in the King Salmon/Iliamna Room on Tuesday, December 6 and continue through Friday December 9, 2016. The Council's Advisory Panel (AP) will begin at 8 a.m. in the Dillingham/Katmai Room on Wednesday December 7, and continue through Sunday, December 11, 2016. The Charter Halibut Management Committee will meet on Tuesday, December 6, 2016 (room to be determined) from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. The Recreational Quota Entity Committee will meet on Tuesday, December 6, 2016, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. (room to be determined). The Ecosystem Committee will meet on Wednesday, December 7, 2016, from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. (room to be determined). The Enforcement Committee will meet on Wednesday, December 7, 2016, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. (room to be determined).

    Agenda

    Tuesday, December 6, 2016 through Wednesday, December 14, 2016

    Council Plenary Session: The agenda for the Council's plenary session will include the following issues. The Council may take appropriate action on any of the issues identified.

    (1) Executive Director's Report (2) NMFS Management Report (including update on 2017 Observer ADP) (3) ADF&G Report (4) NOAA Enforcement Report (5) USCG Report (6) USFWS Report (7) Protected Species Report (8) IPHC Report (T) (9) 2017 Charter Halibut Management Measures (10) Charter Halibut Permit Leasing (11) Charter Halibut RQE Program (12) Am 80 Halibut PSC Measures (13) EFP-1 (interim report on halibut deck sorting) (14) BSAI Groundfish Harvest Specifications (15) GOA Groundfish Harvest Specifications (16) EFP-2 (review application for RKC Savings Area) (17) Electronic Monitoring Integration (18) GOA Trawl Bycatch Management (19) EFH Effects of Fishing Criteria (20) EFH Non-Fishing Effects Report (21) EFP-3 (final report on salmon excluder EFP) (22) Staff Tasking

    The Advisory Panel will address most of the same agenda issues as the Council except B reports.

    The SSC agenda will include the following issues:

    (1) BSAI Crab Harvest Specifications (2) GOA Harvest Specifications (3) EFH Effects of Fishing Criteria (4) EFP-2 (review application for RKC Savings Area)

    In addition to providing ongoing scientific advice for fishery management decisions, the SSC functions as the Councils primary peer review panel for scientific information as described by the Magnuson-Stevens Act section 302(g)(1)(e), and the National Standard 2 guidelines (78 FR 43066). The peer review process is also deemed to satisfy the requirements of the Information Quality Act, including the OMB Peer Review Bulletin guidelines.

    The Agenda is subject to change, and the latest version will be posted at http://www.npfmc.org/.

    Special Accommodations

    These meetings are physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to Shannon Gleason at (907) 271-2809 at least 7 working days prior to the meeting date.

    Dated: November 10, 2016. Tracey L. Thompson, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27495 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Office of the Secretary Judicial Proceedings Since Fiscal Year 2012 Amendments Panel (Judicial Proceedings Panel); Notice of Federal Advisory Committee Meeting AGENCY:

    Department of Defense.

    ACTION:

    Notice of meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Defense is publishing this notice to announce the following Federal Advisory Committee meeting of the Judicial Proceedings Since Fiscal Year 2012 Amendments Panel (“the Judicial Proceedings Panel” or “the Panel”). The meeting is open to the public.

    DATES:

    A meeting of the Judicial Proceedings Panel will be held on Friday, December 9, 2016. The public session will begin at 9:00 a.m. and end at 4:30 p.m.

    ADDRESSES:

    The location of the public meeting is yet to be determined, but will be posted on the JPP Web site at http://jpp.whs.mil. Please check the Web site for updates regarding the meeting location.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ms. Julie Carson, Judicial Proceedings Panel, One Liberty Center, Suite 150, 875 N. Randolph Street, Arlington, Virginia 22203. Email: [email protected] Phone: (703) 693-3849. Web site: http://jpp.whs.mil.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This public meeting is being held under the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act of 1972 (5 U.S.C., Appendix, as amended), the Government in the Sunshine Act of 1976 (5 U.S.C. 552b, as amended), and 41 CFR 102-3.150.

    Purpose of the Meeting: In section 576(a)(2) of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013 (Pub. L. 112-239), as amended, Congress tasked the Judicial Proceedings Panel to conduct an independent review and assessment of judicial proceedings conducted under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) involving adult sexual assault and related offenses since the amendments made to the UCMJ by section 541 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 (Pub. L. 112-81; 125 Stat. 1404), for the purpose of developing recommendations for improvements to such proceedings. At this meeting, the Panel will receive presentations from Subcommittee members and conduct deliberations on the recommendations made by the subcommittee regarding defense resources and sexual assault investigations. The Panel will also receive a presentation on the proposed Military Justice Act of 2016 and conduct deliberations regarding victims' appellate rights.

    Agenda: 8:30 a.m.-9:00 a.m. Administrative Work (41 CFR 102-3.160, not subject to notice & open meeting requirements) 9:00 a.m.-9:15 a.m. Welcome and Introduction —Designated Federal Official Opens Meeting —Remarks of the Chair 9:15 a.m.-10:45 a.m. Site Visit Presentation on Defense Resources and Deliberations on Subcommittee Recommendations —Ms. Laurie Kepros, JPP Subcommittee Member 10:45 a.m.-12:15 p.m. Site Visit Presentation on Sexual Assault Investigations and Deliberations on Subcommittee Recommendations —Ms. Lisa Friel, JPP Subcommittee Member 12:15 p.m.-1:15 p.m. Lunch 1:15 p.m.-3:15 p.m. Presentation on the Proposed Military Justice Act of 2016 —The Honorable Andrew Effron, Director, Military Justice Review Group, Department of Defense —Mr. Dwight Sullivan, Senior Associate Deputy General Counsel for Military Justice and Personnel Policy, Department of Defense 3:15 p.m.-4:15 p.m. Deliberations on Victims' Appellate Rights 4:15 p.m.-4:30 p.m. Public Comment 4:30 p.m. Meeting Adjourned

    Availability of Materials for the Meeting: A copy of the December 9, 2016 public meeting agenda and any updates or changes to the agenda, including the location and individual speakers not identified at the time of this notice, as well as other materials provided to Panel members for use at the public meeting, may be obtained at the meeting or from the Panel's Web site at http://jpp.whs.mil.

    Public's Accessibility to the Meeting: Pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b and 41 CFR 102-3.140 through 102-3.165, and the availability of space, this meeting is open to the public. Seating is limited and is on a first-come basis. In the event the Office of Personnel Management closes the government due to inclement weather or any other reason, please consult the Web site for any changes to public meeting dates or time.

    Special Accommodations: Individuals requiring special accommodations to access the public meeting should contact the Judicial Proceedings Panel at [email protected] at least five (5) business days prior to the meeting so that appropriate arrangements can be made.

    Procedures for Providing Public Comments: Pursuant to 41 CFR 102-3.140 and section 10(a)(3) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act of 1972, the public or interested organizations may submit written comments to the Panel about its mission and topics pertaining to this public session. Written comments must be received by the JPP at least five (5) business days prior to the meeting date so that they may be made available to the Judicial Proceedings Panel for their consideration prior to the meeting. Written comments should be submitted via email to the Judicial Proceedings Panel at [email protected] in the following formats: Adobe Acrobat or Microsoft Word. Please note that since the Judicial Proceedings Panel operates under the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended, all written comments will be treated as public documents and will be made available for public inspection. If members of the public are interested in making an oral statement pertaining to the agenda for the public meeting, a written statement must be submitted as above along with a request to provide an oral statement. After reviewing the written comments and the oral statement, the Chairperson and the Designated Federal Official will determine who will be permitted to make an oral presentation of their issue during the public comment portion of this meeting. This determination is at the sole discretion of the Chairperson and Designated Federal Official, will depend on the time available and relevance to the Panel's activities for that meeting, and will be on a first-come basis. When approved in advance, oral presentations by members of the public will be permitted from 4:15 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. on December 9, 2016 in front of the Panel members.

    Committee's Designated Federal Official: The Panel's Designated Federal Official is Ms. Maria Fried, Department of Defense, Office of the General Counsel, 1600 Defense Pentagon, Room 3B747, Washington, DC 20301-1600.

    Dated: November 10, 2016. Aaron Siegel, Alternate OSD Federal Register Liaison Officer, Department of Defense.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27508 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 5001-06-P
    DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION [Docket No. ED-2016-ICCD-0101] Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Common Core of Data (CCD) School-Level Finance Survey (SLFS) 2016-2018 AGENCY:

    National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), Department of Education (ED).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. chapter 3501 et seq.), ED is proposing a new information collection.

    DATES:

    Interested persons are invited to submit comments on or before December 16, 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-0101. 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-343, Washington, DC 20202-4537.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For specific questions related to collection activities, please contact NCES Information Collections at [email protected]

    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: Common Core of Data (CCD) School-Level Finance Survey (SLFS) 2016-2018.

    OMB Control Number: 1850-NEW.

    Type of Review: A new information collection.

    Respondents/Affected Public: State, Local, and Tribal Governments.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Responses: 306.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Burden Hours: 4,938.

    Abstract: In response to a growing demand, the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), within the U.S. Department of Education, has developed and conducted a pilot, in 2015 and 2016 (OMB #1850-0803), of a new collection of finance data at the school level. The School-Level Finance Survey (SLFS) centrally collects school-level finance data form state education agencies (SEAs), and is an extension of two existing collections conducted by NCES, in collaboration with the U.S. Census Bureau, the School District Finance Survey (F-33) and the state-level National Public Education Financial Survey (NPEFS). The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) signed into law on December 10, 2015, requires SEAs and local agencies to produce report cards for the 2017-18 school year that include per-pupil actual personnel and nonpersonnel expenditures of Federal, State, and local funds, disaggregated by source of funds, for each local educational agency (LEA) and each school in the State for the preceding fiscal year. SLFS collects 30 expenditure items, 12 of which are “personnel” and 18 “nonpersonnel” expenditures. The SLFS data items and definitions are consistent with those in the NPEFS and F-33 surveys. The first year of the pilot SLFS data collection (for fiscal year FY 2014) commenced on May 7, 2015, with 12 SEAs participating, and the second year of data collection (for FY 2015) commenced on April 4, 2016, with 19 SEAs participating. This request is to annually collect national SLFS data in 2017 through 2019, covering FY 2016 through 2018, and corresponding to school years 2015/16 through 2017/18.

    Dated: November 10, 2016. Stephanie Valentine, Acting Director, Information Collection Clearance Division, Office of the Chief Privacy Officer, Office of Management.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27491 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Orders Granting Authority To Import and Export Natural Gas, To Import and Export Liquefied Natural Gas, and Vacating Prior Authority During September 2016 FE Docket Nos. Bluewater Gas Storage, LLC 16-114-NG Energia Azteca X, S.A. DE C.V 15-115-NG Trafigura Trading LLC 16-107-NG Texas Eastern Transmission, LP 16-119-NG Applied LNG Technologies, LLC 16-112-NG/
  • 16-05-NG
  • Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc. and Orange and Rockland Utilities, Inc 16-121-NG Alberta Northeast Gas, Limited 16-122-NG Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corporation 16-124-NG Northern Utilities, Inc 16-130-NG The Southern Connecticut Gas Company Corporation 16-128-NG Connecticut Natural Gas Company 16-125-NG Yankee Gas Services Company 16-129-NG Northeast Gas Marketing LLC 16-127-NG Liberty Utilities (Energynorth Gas) Corp. d/b/a Liberty Utilities 16-126-NG Termoelectrica De Mexicali S. DE R.L. DE C.V 16-120-NG Bay State Gas Company d/b/a Columbia Gas of Massachusettes 16-123-NG Aliza LLC 16-111-NG Energy Plus Natural Gas LLC 16-117-NG Vista Energy Marketing, L.P 16-116-NG
    AGENCY:

    Office of Fossil Energy, Department of Energy.

    ACTION:

    Notice of orders.

    SUMMARY:

    The Office of Fossil Energy (FE) of the Department of Energy gives notice that during September 2016, it issued orders granting authority to import and export natural gas, to import and export liquefied natural gas (LNG), and vacating prior authority. These orders are summarized in the attached appendix and may be found on the FE Web site at http://energy.gov/fe/listing-doefe-authorizationsorders-issued-2016.

    They are also available for inspection and copying in the U.S. Department of Energy (FE-34), Division of Natural Gas Regulation, Office of Regulation and International Engagement, Office of Fossil Energy, Docket Room 3E-033, Forrestal Building, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585, (202) 586-9478. The Docket Room is open between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

    Issued in Washington, DC, on November 10, 2016. John A. Anderson, Director, Office of Regulation and International Engagement, Office of Oil and Natural Gas. Appendix—DOE/FE Orders Granting Import/Export Authorizations 3885 09/08/16 16-114-NG Bluewater Gas Storage, LLC Order 3885 granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada. 3886 09/14/16 16-115-NG Energia Azteca X, S.A. de C.V Order 3886 granting blanket authority to export natural gas to Mexico. 3887 09/14/16 16-107-NG Trafigura Trading LLC Order 3887 granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada/Mexico. 3888 09/14/16 16-119-NG Texas Eastern Transmission, LP Order 3888 granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Mexico. 3889/3771-A 09/14/16 16-112-NG/16-05-NG Applied LNG Technologies, LLC Order 3889 granting blanket authority to import/export LNG from/to Canada/Mexico by truck, and vacating prior authority in Order 3771. 3890 09/14/16 16-121-NG Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc. and Orange and Rockland Utilities, Inc Order 3890 granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada. 3891 09/14/16 16-122-NG Alberta Northeast Gas, Limited Order 3891 granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada. 3892 09/14/16 16-124-NG Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corporation Order 3892 granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada. 3893 09/14/16 16-130-NG Northern Utilities, Inc Order 3893 granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada. 3894 09/14/16 16-128-NG The Southern Connecticut Gas Company Order 3894 granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada. 3895 09/14/16 16-125-NG Connecticut Natural Gas Corporation Order 3895 granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada. 3896 09/14/16 16-129-NG Yankee Gas Services Company Order 3896 granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada. 3897 09/14/16 16-127-NG Northeast Gas Marketing LLC Order 3897 granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada. 3898 09/14/16 16-126-NG Liberty Utilities (EnergyNorth Gas) Corp. d/b/a Liberty Utilities Order 3898 granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada. 3899 09/14/16 16-120-NG Termoelectrica de Mexicali, S. de R.L. de C.V Order 3899 granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Mexico. 3900 09/14/16 16-123-NG Bay State Gas Company d/b/a Columbia Gas of Massachusetts Order 3900 granting blanket authority import/export natural gas from/to Canada. 3901 09/14/16 16-111-NG Aliza LLC Order 3901 granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada/Mexico. 3902 09/14/16 16-117-NG Energy Plus Natural Gas LLC Order 3902 granting blanket authority to import/export natural gas from/to Canada. 3903 09/20/16 16-116-NG Vista Energy Marketing, L.P Order 3903 granting blanket authority to import natural gas from Canada.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27512 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Proposed Subsequent Arrangement AGENCY:

    Office of Nonproliferation and Arms Control, Department of Energy.

    ACTION:

    Proposed subsequent arrangement.

    SUMMARY:

    This document is being issued under the authority of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended. The Department is providing notice of a proposed subsequent arrangement under Article 6 paragraph 2 of the Agreement for Cooperation Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the Argentine Republic Concerning Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy.

    DATES:

    This subsequent arrangement will take effect no sooner than December 1, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Mr. Richard Goorevich, Office of Nonproliferation and Arms Control, National Nuclear Security Administration, Department of Energy. Telephone: 202-586-0589 or email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This subsequent arrangement concerns the alteration in form or content of 17,729 g of U.S.-origin low enriched uranium (LEU), 3,502g of which is in the isotope of U-235 (19.75 percent enrichment), in cartridges containing filters, located at Ezeiza Radioactive Management Area (AGE), and 19,849g of U.S.-origin LEU, 3,925g of which is in the isotope ofU-235 (19.77 percent enrichment), contained in filters, located at the Fission Plant. Comision Nacional de Energia Atomica (CNEA) plans to recover and purify the slightly irradiated U.S.-origin LEU inventories held in filters of the Mo-99 production plant into a product to be used in the manufacturing of fuel elements and irradiation targets. The remaining radioisotope inventory will be set up for waste disposal. The recovery and purification will take place in the Radiochemical Laboratory Facility and the waste will be disposed in the AGE area. Both facilities are located in the Ezeiza Atomic Center. The material was obtained originally by CNEA from Y-12 pursuant to export licenses XSNM03348, XSNM3445, XSM3590, and XSNM3709. This will be an ongoing activity for the fission radioisotope production program at CNEA.

    In accordance with section 131a. of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, it has been determined that this subsequent arrangement concerning the alteration in form or content of nuclear material of United States origin will not be inimical to the common defense and security of the United States of America.

    Dated: November 1, 2016.

    For the Department of Energy.

    Anne M. Harrington, Deputy Administrator, Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27511 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Proposed Subsequent Arrangement AGENCY:

    Office of Nonproliferation and Arms Control, Department of Energy.

    ACTION:

    Proposed subsequent arrangement.

    SUMMARY:

    This document is being issued under the authority of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended. The Department is providing notice of a proposed subsequent arrangement under the Agreement for Cooperation Between the United States of America and the Republic of Kazakhstan Concerning Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy and the Agreement for Cooperation in the Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy Between the United States of America and the European Atomic Energy Community.

    DATES:

    This subsequent arrangement will take effect no sooner than December 1, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Mr. Richard Goorevich, Office of Nonproliferation and Arms Control, National Nuclear Security Administration, Department of Energy. Telephone: 202-586-30589 or email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This subsequent arrangement concerns the retransfer of 2,794,512g of U.S.-origin enriched uranium oxide (UO2), containing 114,692g of the isotopeU-235 (less than five percent enrichment), from Ulba Metallurgical Plant in Ust-Kamengorsk, Kazakhstan, to Westinghouse Springfields Fuels Limited in Salwick, United Kingdom. The material has already been retransferred from Ulba to Westinghouse Springfields for storage.

    In accordance with section 131a. of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, it has been determined that this subsequent arrangement concerning the retransfer of nuclear material of United States origin will not be inimical to the common defense and security of the United States of America.

    Dated: October 27, 2016.

    For the Department of Energy.

    Anne M. Harrington, Deputy Administrator, Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27509 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Environmental Management Site-Specific Advisory Board, Hanford AGENCY:

    Department of Energy.

    ACTION:

    Notice of open meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    This notice announces a meeting of the Environmental Management Site-Specific Advisory Board (EM SSAB), Hanford. The Federal Advisory Committee Act requires that public notice of this meeting be announced in the Federal Register.

    DATES:

    Wednesday, December 7, 2016—9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. Thursday, December 8, 2016—8:30 a.m.-3:00 p.m.

    ADDRESSES:

    Pasco Red Lion, 2525 North 20th Avenue, Pasco, WA 99301.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Kristen Holmes, Federal Coordinator, Department of Energy Richland Operations Office, 825 Jadwin Avenue, P.O. Box 550, A7-75, Richland, WA, 99352; Phone: (509) 376-5803; or Email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Purpose of the Board: The purpose of the Board is to make recommendations to DOE-EM and site management in the areas of environmental restoration, waste management, and related activities.

    Tentative Agenda • Potential Draft Advice Hanford Advisory Board's (HAB) Budget Suggested format for upcoming State of the Site meetings • Discussion Topics Tri-Party Agreement Agencies' Updates HAB Committee Reports HAB letter reaffirming cleanup priorities for budget consideration River Corridor Contract Successes and Challenges 2016 Grand Challenge Board Business

    Public Participation: The meeting is open to the public. The EM SSAB, Hanford, welcomes the attendance of the public at its advisory committee meetings and will make every effort to accommodate persons with physical disabilities or special needs. If you require special accommodations due to a disability, please contact Kristen Holmes at least seven days in advance of the meeting at the phone number listed above. Written statements may be filed with the Board either before or after the meeting. Individuals who wish to make oral statements pertaining to agenda items should contact Kristen Holmes at the address or telephone number listed above. Requests must be received five days prior to the meeting and reasonable provision will be made to include the presentation in the agenda. The Deputy Designated Federal Officer is empowered to conduct the meeting in a fashion that will facilitate the orderly conduct of business. Individuals wishing to make public comments will be provided a maximum of five minutes to present their comments.

    Minutes: Minutes will be available by writing or calling Kristen Holmes's office at the address or phone number listed above. Minutes will also be available at the following Web site: http://www.hanford.gov/page.cfm/hab.

    Issued at Washington, DC, on November 9, 2016. LaTanya R. Butler, Deputy Committee Management Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27526 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. CP15-558-000] PennEast Pipeline Company, LLC; Notice of Revised Schedule for Environmental Review of the PennEast Pipeline Project

    This notice identifies the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC or Commission) staff's revised schedule for the completion of the environmental impact statement (EIS) for PennEast Pipeline Company, LLC's (PennEast) PennEast Pipeline Project. The first notice of schedule, issued on March 29, 2016, identified December 16, 2016 as the EIS issuance date. Based on new route modifications filed by PennEast. The Commission staff intend to issue a notice to newly affected landowners. Commission staff has therefore revised the schedule for issuance of the final EIS.

    Schedule for Environmental Review Issuance of Notice of Availability of the final EIS, February 17, 2017 90-day Federal Authorization Decision Deadline, May 18, 2017

    If a schedule change becomes necessary, an additional notice will be provided so that the relevant agencies are kept informed of the project's progress.

    Additional Information

    In order to receive notification of the issuance of the EIS and to keep track of all formal issuances and submittals in specific dockets, the Commission offers a free service called eSubscription (https://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/esubscription.asp).

    Dated: November 8, 2016. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27450 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. RP16-1299-000] Kinetica Energy Express, LLC; Notice of Technical Conference

    The Commission's October 31, 2016 order in the above-captioned proceeding 1 directed that a technical conference be held to address the effect of the tariff changes proposed by Kinetica Energy Express, LLC in its September 30, 2016 filing in this docket.

    1Kinetica Energy Express, LLC, 157 FERC ¶ 61,072 (2016).

    Take notice that a technical conference will be held on Thursday December 1, 2016 at 10:00 a.m., in a room to be designated at the offices of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    FERC conferences are accessible under section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. For accessibility accommodations please send an email to [email protected] or call toll free (866) 208-3372 (voice) or (202) 502-8659 (TTY), or send a fax to (202) 208-2106 with the required accommodations.

    All interested persons and staff are permitted to attend. For further information please contact Omar Bustami at (202) 502-6214 or email Omar Bustami at [email protected].

    Dated: November 8, 2016. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27449 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings

    Take notice that the Commission has received the following Natural Gas Pipeline Rate and Refund Report filings:

    Filings Instituting Proceedings

    Docket Numbers: RP17-159-000.

    Applicants: Noble Energy, Inc., CNX Gas Company LLC.

    Description: Joint Petition for Temporary Waiver of Capacity Release Regulations and Policies and Related Tariff Provisions and Request, et al. of Noble Energy, Inc., et al. under RP17-159.

    Filed Date: 11/4/16.

    Accession Number: 20161104-5207.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/10/16.

    Docket Numbers: RP17-160-000.

    Applicants: Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: Town of Corning, IL Negotiated Rate to be effective 12/1/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/7/16.

    Accession Number: 20161107-5086.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/21/16.

    Docket Numbers: RP17-161-000.

    Applicants: Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: Clean Up to be effective 12/7/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/7/16.

    Accession Number: 20161107-5107.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/21/16.

    Docket Numbers: RP17-162-000.

    Applicants: USG Pipeline Company, LLC.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: Housekeeping Tariff Revisions to be effective 12/8/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/7/16.

    Accession Number: 20161107-5119.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/21/16.

    The filings are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the links or querying the docket number.

    Any person desiring to intervene or protest in any of the above proceedings must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Regulations (18 CFR 385.211 and § 385.214) on or before 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date. Protests may be considered, but intervention is necessary to become a party to the proceeding.

    eFiling is encouraged. More detailed information relating to filing requirements, interventions, protests, service, and qualifying facilities filings can be found at: http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling/filing-req.pdf. For other information, call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: November 8, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27483 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings #2

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric rate filings:

    Docket Numbers: ER16-1912-002.

    Applicants: Southwest Power Pool, Inc.

    Description: Compliance filing: Out-of-Merit Energy Clarification Compliance Filing to be effective 8/10/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/9/16.

    Accession Number: 20161109-5117.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/30/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-328-000.

    Applicants: Sierra Pacific Power Company.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: Service Agreement No. 11-00052 SPPC-Patua to be effective 11/9/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/9/16.

    Accession Number: 20161109-5067.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/30/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-329-000.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: 2016-11-09_SA 2871 NSP-North Star Solar 1st Rev. GIA (J385) to be effective 11/10/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/9/16.

    Accession Number: 20161109-5077.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/30/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-330-000.

    Applicants: KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company.

    Description: Notice of Cancellation of the Electric Interchange Agreement No. 54 of KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company.

    Filed Date: 11/9/16.

    Accession Number: 20161109-5078.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/30/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-331-000.

    Applicants: KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company.

    Description: Notice of Cancellation of the Electric Interchange Agreement No. 55 of KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company.

    Filed Date: 11/9/16.

    Accession Number: 20161109-5081.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/30/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-332-000.

    Applicants: KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company.

    Description: Notice of Cancellation of the Electric Interchange Agreement No. 56 of KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company.

    Filed Date: 11/9/16.

    Accession Number: 20161109-5084.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/30/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-333-000.

    Applicants: KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company.

    Description: Notice of Cancellation of the Electric Interchange Agreement No. 58 of KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company.

    Filed Date: 11/9/16.

    Accession Number: 20161109-5086.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/30/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-334-000.

    Applicants: KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company.

    Description: Notice of Cancellation of the Electric Interchange Agreement No. 109 of KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company.

    Filed Date: 11/9/16.

    Accession Number: 20161109-5087.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/30/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-335-000.

    Applicants: PJM Interconnection, L.L.C.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: Rev to OATT RE: Release of Capacity in 17/18 Third Scheduled Incremental Auction to be effective 1/9/2017.

    Filed Date: 11/9/16.

    Accession Number: 20161109-5107.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/30/16.

    The filings are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the links or querying the docket number.

    Any person desiring to intervene or protest in any of the above proceedings must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Regulations (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214) on or before 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date. Protests may be considered, but intervention is necessary to become a party to the proceeding.

    eFiling is encouraged. More detailed information relating to filing requirements, interventions, protests, service, and qualifying facilities filings can be found at: http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling/filing-req.pdf. For other information, call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: November 9, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27485 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. OR17-1-000] Tesoro Great Plains Gathering & Marketing LLC; Notice of Request for Temporary Waiver

    Take notice that on November 2, 2016, pursuant to Rule 204 of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's (Commission) Rules of Practice and Procedure, 18 CFR 385.204 (2016), Tesoro Great Plains Gathering & Marketing LLC (Petitioner) filed a petition for temporary waiver of the tariff filing and reporting requirements of sections 6 and 20 of the Interstate Commerce Act and parts 341 and 357 of the Commission's regulations, as more fully explained in the petition.

    Any person desiring to intervene or to protest this filing must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214 (2016)) on or before 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date. Protests will be considered by the Commission in determining the appropriate action to be taken, but will not serve to make protestants parties to the proceeding. Any person wishing to become a party must file a notice of intervention or motion to intervene, as appropriate. Such notices, motions, or protests must be filed on or before the comment date. Anyone filing a motion to intervene or protest must serve a copy of that document on the Petitioner.

    The Commission encourages electronic submission of protests and interventions in lieu of paper using the “eFiling” link at http://www.ferc.gov. Persons unable to file electronically should submit an original and 5 copies of the protest or intervention to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426

    This filing is accessible on-line at http://www.ferc.gov, using the “eLibrary” link and is available for review in the Commission's Public Reference Room in Washington, DC. There is an “eSubscription” link on the Web site that enables subscribers to receive email notification when a document is added to a subscribed docket(s). For assistance with any FERC Online service, please email [email protected], or call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Comment Date: 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on November 23, 2016.

    Dated: November 9, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27486 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings

    Take notice that the Commission has received the following Natural Gas Pipeline Rate and Refund Report filings:

    Filings Instituting Proceedings

    Docket Numbers: RP17-157-000.

    Applicants: Iroquois Gas Transmission System, L.P.

    Description: Compliance filing 11/03/16—Implementing Settlement Rates (2016) to be effective 9/1/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/3/16.

    Accession Number: 20161103-5115.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/15/16.

    Docket Numbers: RP17-158-000.

    Applicants: Northern Natural Gas Company.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: 20161104 Negotiated Rate to be effective 11/8/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/4/16.

    Accession Number: 20161104-5165.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/16/16.

    Any person desiring to intervene or protest in any of the above proceedings must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Regulations (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214) on or before 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date. Protests may be considered, but intervention is necessary to become a party to the proceeding.

    Filings in Existing Proceedings

    Docket Numbers: RP17-19-001.

    Applicants: Iroquois Gas Transmission System, L.P.

    Description: Tariff Amendment: 11/02/16 Negotiated Rates—Vitol (RTS) 7495-02 (AMD) to be effective 11/2/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/2/16.

    Accession Number: 20161102-5065.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/14/16.

    Docket Numbers: RP16-1285-001.

    Applicants: Dominion Carolina Gas Transmission, LLC.

    Description: Compliance filing DCGT—2016 FRQ & TDA Report Compliance Filing to be effective 11/1/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/4/16.

    Accession Number: 20161104-5158.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/16/16.

    Any person desiring to protest in any of the above proceedings must file in accordance with Rule 211 of the Commission's Regulations (18 CFR 385.211) on or before 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date.

    The filings are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the links or querying the docket number.

    eFiling is encouraged. More detailed information relating to filing requirements, interventions, protests, service, and qualifying facilities filings can be found at: http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling/filing-req.pdf. For other information, call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: November 7, 2016 Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27482 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 2334-056] Essential Power Massachusetts, LLC; Nautilus Hydro, LLC; Notice of Application for Transfer of License and Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Protests

    On October 28, 2016, Essential Power Massachusetts, LLC (transferor) and Nautilus Hydro, LLC (transferee) filed an application for the transfer of license of the Gardners Falls Project No. 2334. The project is located on the Deerfield River in Franklin County, Massachusetts. The project does not occupy Federal lands.

    The applicants seek Commission approval to transfer the license for the Gardners Falls Project from Essential Power Massachusetts, LLC to Nautilus Hydro, LLC.

    Applicants Contact: For transferor and transferee: Mr. David Rosenstein, Vice President and General Counsel, Essential Power Massachusetts, LLC, 150 College Road West, Suite 300, Princeton, NJ 08540, Phone: 609-917-3904, Email: [email protected] and Ms. Julia S. Wood and Ms. Sharon L. White, Van Ness Feldman, LLP, 1050 Thomas Jefferson Street NW., Seventh Floor, Washington, DC 20007, Phone: 202-298-1800 and Emails: [email protected] and [email protected].

    FERC Contact: Patricia W. Gillis, (202) 502-8735, [email protected]

    Deadline for filing comments, motions to intervene, and protests: 30 days from the date that the Commission issues this notice. The Commission strongly encourages electronic filing. Please file comments, motions to intervene, and protests using the Commission's eFiling system at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling.asp. Commenters can submit brief comments up to 6,000 characters, without prior registration, using the eComment system at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/ecomment.asp. You must include your name and contact information at the end of your comments. For assistance, please contact FERC Online Support at [email protected], (866) 208-3676 (toll free), or (202) 502-8659 (TTY). In lieu of electronic filing, please send a paper copy to: Secretary, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426. The first page of any filing should include docket number P-2334-056.

    Dated: November 8, 2016. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27453 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 199-234] South Carolina Public Service Authority; Notice of Application Accepted for Filing and Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Protests

    Take notice that the following hydroelectric application has been filed with the Commission and is available for public inspection:

    a. Application Type: Shoreline Reclassification Request and Non-Project Use of Project Lands and Waters.

    b. Project No: 199-234.

    c. Date Filed: October 11, 2016.

    d. Applicant: South Carolina Public Service Authority.

    e. Name of Project: Santee Cooper Hydroelectric Project.

    f. Location: Santee and Cooper Rivers in Berkeley and Clarendon counties, South Carolina.

    g. Filed Pursuant to: Federal Power Act, 16 U.S.C. 791a-825r.

    h. Applicant Contact: Elisa Furse, Property Management, P.O. Box 2946101, Moncks Corner, South Carolina, (843) 761-8000 (ext. 5142) or email at [email protected]

    i. FERC Contact: Jon Cofrancesco at (202) 502-8951, or email: [email protected]

    j. Deadline for filing comments, motions to intervene, and protests: December 8, 2016.

    All documents may be filed electronically via the Internet. See 18 CFR 385.2001(a)(1)(iii) and the instructions on the Commission's Web site at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling.asp. Commenters can submit brief comments up to 6,000 characters, without prior registration, using the eComment system at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/ecomment.asp. You must include your name and contact information at the end of your comments. For assistance, please contact FERC Online Support at [email protected] or toll free at 1-866-208-3676, or for TTY, (202) 502-8659. Although the Commission strongly encourages electronic filing, documents may also be paper-filed. To paper-file, mail an original and seven copies to: Secretary, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426. Please include the project number (P-199-234) on any comments, motions, or recommendations filed.

    The Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure require all intervenors filing documents with the Commission to serve a copy of that document on each person whose name appears on the official service list for the project. Further, if an intervenor files comments or documents with the Commission relating to the merits of an issue that may affect the responsibilities of a particular resource agency, they must also serve a copy of the document on that resource agency.

    k. Description of Request: South Carolina Public Service Authority (licensee) requests Commission approval to reclassify a 3.10 acre parcel of land located on Dean Swamp Impoundment on Lake Marion, a project reservoir within the boundary of the Santee Cooper Hydroelectric Project. The licensee proposes to reclassify this land, as identified in the project's approved land use plan, from Public Vacation Recreation to Public General Recreation (quasi-public). In conjunction with the reclassification proposal, the licensee proposes to grant a lease to Clarendon County to allow the lands to be used for a new fire station and specific public recreation facilities. The licensee states the proposed use would provide improved firefighting support for the area and improved public access to an underutilized portion of the lake.

    l. Locations of the Application: A copy of the application is available for inspection and reproduction at the Commission's Public Reference Room, located at 888 First Street NE., Room 2A, Washington, DC 20426, or by calling (202) 502-8371. This filing may also be viewed on the Commission's Web site at http://www.ferc.gov using the “eLibrary” link. Enter the docket number excluding the last three digits in the docket number field (P-199) to access the document. You may also register online at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/esubscription.asp to be notified via email of new filings and issuances related to this or other pending projects. For assistance, call 1-866-208-3676 or email [email protected], for TTY, call (202) 502-8659. A copy is also available for inspection and reproduction at the address in item (h) above. Agencies may obtain copies of the application directly from the applicant.

    m. Individuals desiring to be included on the Commission's mailing list should so indicate by writing to the Secretary of the Commission.

    n. Comments, Protests, or Motions to Intervene: Anyone may submit comments, a protest, or a motion to intervene in accordance with the requirements of Rules of Practice and Procedure, 18 CFR 385.210, .211, .214, respectively. In determining the appropriate action to take, the Commission will consider all protests or other comments filed, but only those who file a motion to intervene in accordance with the Commission's Rules may become a party to the proceeding. Any comments, protests, or motions to intervene must be received on or before the specified comment date for the particular application.

    o. Filing and Service of Documents: Any filing must (1) bear in all capital letters the title “COMMENTS”, “PROTEST”, or “MOTION TO INTERVENE” as applicable; (2) set forth in the heading the name of the applicant and the project number of the application to which the filing responds; (3) furnish the name, address, and telephone number of the person commenting, protesting or intervening; and (4) otherwise comply with the requirements of 18 CFR 385.2001 through 385.2005. All comments, motions to intervene, or protests must set forth their evidentiary basis. Any filing made by an intervenor must be accompanied by proof of service on all persons listed in the service list prepared by the Commission in this proceeding, in accordance with 18 CFR 385.2010.

    Dated: November 8, 2016. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27452 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. ER17-311-000] SR South Loving LLC; Supplemental Notice That Initial Market-Based Rate Filing Includes Request for Blanket Section 204 Authorization

    This is a supplemental notice in the above-referenced proceeding of SR South Loving LLC`s application for market-based rate authority, with an accompanying rate tariff, noting that such application includes a request for blanket authorization, under 18 CFR part 34, of future issuances of securities and assumptions of liability.

    Any person desiring to intervene or to protest should file with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214). Anyone filing a motion to intervene or protest must serve a copy of that document on the Applicant.

    Notice is hereby given that the deadline for filing protests with regard to the applicant's request for blanket authorization, under 18 CFR part 34, of future issuances of securities and assumptions of liability, is November 28, 2016.

    The Commission encourages electronic submission of protests and interventions in lieu of paper, using the FERC Online links at http://www.ferc.gov. To facilitate electronic service, persons with Internet access who will eFile a document and/or be listed as a contact for an intervenor must create and validate an eRegistration account using the eRegistration link. Select the eFiling link to log on and submit the intervention or protests.

    Persons unable to file electronically should submit an original and 5 copies of the intervention or protest to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    The filings in the above-referenced proceeding are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the appropriate link in the above list. They are also available for electronic review in the Commission's Public Reference Room in Washington, DC. There is an eSubscription link on the Web site that enables subscribers to receive email notification when a document is added to a subscribed docket(s). For assistance with any FERC Online service, please email [email protected] or call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: November 8, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27481 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. CP17-7-000] Texas Eastern Transmission, LP; Notice of Application

    Take notice that on October 31, 2016, Texas Eastern Transmission, LP (Texas Eastern), 5400 Westheimer Court, Houston, Texas 77056, filed in Docket No. CP17-7-000, an application pursuant to section 7(b) of the Natural Gas Act and Part 157 of the Commission's regulations, requesting approval to abandon certain offshore pipeline facilities located in federal offshore waters in the Gulf of Mexico near Louisiana. Specifically, Texas Eastern proposes to (i) abandon in place approximately 17.4 miles of a 20-inch diameter offshore supply lateral, designated as Line 41-B; (ii) abandon by removal metering and regulating station (“M&R”) 71474; (iii) abandon the receipt point at producer owned M&R 73548; and (iv) abandon by removal all related appurtenant facilities. Texas Eastern states abandonment of these facilities is required in light of a ruling by the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Texas related to Black Elk Energy Offshore Operations, LLC's requirement to remove its platform connected to Texas Eastern's Line 41-B. Texas Eastern also states that there will be no termination or reduction in firm service to any existing customers of Texas Eastern as a result of the proposed abandonment, all as more fully set forth in the application, which is on file with the Commission and open to public inspection. The filing may also be viewed on the web at http://www.ferc.gov using the “eLibrary” link. Enter the docket number excluding the last three digits in the docket number field to access the document. For assistance, contact FERC at [email protected] or call toll-free, (866) 208-3676 or TTY, (202) 502-8659.

    Any questions regarding this application should be directed to Lisa A. Connolly, General Manager, Rates & Certificates, Texas Eastern Transmission, LP, P.O. Box 1642, Houston, Texas 77251, phone: (713) 627-4102, or fax (713) 627-5947, or email: [email protected].

    Pursuant to section 157.9 of the Commission's rules, 18 CFR 157.9, within 90 days of this Notice the Commission staff will either: Complete its environmental assessment (EA) and place it into the Commission's public record (eLibrary) for this proceeding; or issue a Notice of Schedule for Environmental Review. If a Notice of Schedule for Environmental Review is issued, it will indicate, among other milestones, the anticipated date for the Commission staff's issuance of the final environmental impact statement (FEIS) or EA for this proposal. The filing of the EA in the Commission's public record for this proceeding or the issuance of a Notice of Schedule for Environmental Review will serve to notify federal and state agencies of the timing for the completion of all necessary reviews, and the subsequent need to complete all federal authorizations within 90 days of the date of issuance of the Commission staff's FEIS or EA.

    There are two ways to become involved in the Commission's review of this project. First, any person wishing to obtain legal status by becoming a party to the proceedings for this project should, on or before the comment date stated below, file with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, a motion to intervene in accordance with the requirements of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.214 or 385.211) and the Regulations under the NGA (18 CFR 157.10). A person obtaining party status will be placed on the service list maintained by the Secretary of the Commission and will receive copies of all documents filed by the applicant and by all other parties. A party must submit 7 copies of filings made with the Commission and must mail a copy to the applicant and to every other party in the proceeding. Only parties to the proceeding can ask for court review of Commission orders in the proceeding.

    However, a person does not have to intervene in order to have comments considered. The second way to participate is by filing with the Secretary of the Commission, as soon as possible, an original and two copies of comments in support of or in opposition to this project. The Commission will consider these comments in determining the appropriate action to be taken, but the filing of a comment alone will not serve to make the filer a party to the proceeding. The Commission's rules require that persons filing comments in opposition to the project provide copies of their protests only to the party or parties directly involved in the protest.

    Persons who wish to comment only on the environmental review of this project should submit an original and two copies of their comments to the Secretary of the Commission. Environmental commentors will be placed on the Commission's environmental mailing list, will receive copies of the environmental documents, and will be notified of meetings associated with the Commission's environmental review process. Environmental commentors will not be required to serve copies of filed documents on all other parties. However, the non-party commentors will not receive copies of all documents filed by other parties or issued by the Commission (except for the mailing of environmental documents issued by the Commission) and will not have the right to seek court review of the Commission's final order.

    The Commission strongly encourages electronic filings of comments, protests and interventions in lieu of paper using the “eFiling” link at http://www.ferc.gov. Persons unable to file electronically should submit an original and 5 copies of the protest or intervention to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    There is an “eSubscription” link on the Web site that enables subscribers to receive email notification when a document is added to a subscribed docket(s). For assistance with any FERC Online service, please email [email protected], or call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Comment Date: 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time on November 29, 2016.

    Dated: November 8, 2016. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27451 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings #1

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric corporate filings:

    Docket Numbers: EC16-146-000.

    Applicants: Great Plains Energy, Westar Energy, Inc.

    Description: Response of Great Plains Energy Incorporated to each question (except Item 4) of the October 7, 2016 Deficiency Letter.

    Filed Date: 11/7/16.

    Accession Number: 20161107-5294.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/28/16.

    Docket Numbers: EC17-19-000.

    Applicants: Chisholm View Wind Project II, LLC.

    Description: Supplement to October 19, 2016 Application for Authorization Under Section 203 of the Federal Power Act, et al. of Chisholm View Wind Project II, LLC.

    Filed Date: 11/4/16.

    Accession Number: 20161104-5213.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/14/16.

    Docket Numbers: EC17-29-000.

    Applicants: West Deptford Energy, LLC.

    Description: Application for Approval Under Section 203 of the Federal Power Act and Request for Expedited Action of West Deptford Energy, LLC.

    Filed Date: 11/7/16.

    Accession Number: 20161107-5298.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/28/16.

    Take notice that the Commission received the following exempt wholesale generator filings:

    Docket Numbers: EG17-25-000.

    Applicants: Three Peaks Power, LLC.

    Description: Notice of Self-Certification of Exempt Wholesale Generator Status of Three Peaks Power, LLC.

    Filed Date: 11/8/16.

    Accession Number: 20161108-5075.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/29/16.

    Docket Numbers: EG17-26-000.

    Applicants: Fluvanna Wind Energy, LLC.

    Description: Fluvanna Wind Energy, LLC submits Notice of Self-Certification of Exempt Wholesale Generator Status.

    Filed Date: 11/8/16.

    Accession Number: 20161108-5101.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/29/16.

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric rate filings:

    Docket Numbers: ER10-1819-016; ER10-1817-015; ER10-1818-014; ER10-1820-019.

    Applicants: Northern States Power Company, a Minnesota corporation, Northern States Power Company, a Wisconsin corporation, Public Service Company of Colorado, Southwestern Public Service Company.

    Description: Notice of Change in Status of Northern States Power Company, a Minnesota corporation, et al.

    Filed Date: 11/7/16.

    Accession Number: 20161107-5295.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/28/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-61-001.

    Applicants: New York Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: Compliance filing: Compliance Amendment Orders 827 828 tariff revisions to be effective 10/13/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/8/16.

    Accession Number: 20161108-5105.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/29/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-315-000.

    Applicants: Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation.

    Description: Notice of Cancellation of Interconnection Service Agreement No. 916 of Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation.

    Filed Date: 11/7/16.

    Accession Number: 20161107-5288.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/28/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-316-000.

    Applicants: New England Power Company.

    Description: Notice of Cancellation of Superseded Local Service Agreement No. TSA-NEP-49 of New England Power Company.

    Filed Date: 11/7/16.

    Accession Number: 20161107-5300.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/28/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-317-000.

    Applicants: West Deptford Energy, LLC.

    Description: Request for Waiver and for Expedited Consideration of West Deptford Energy, LLC under ER17-317.

    Filed Date: 11/7/16.

    Accession Number: 20161107-5301.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/28/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-318-000.

    Applicants: Three Peaks Power, LLC.

    Description: Baseline eTariff Filing: Three Peaks MBR Filing to be effective 11/14/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/8/16.

    Accession Number: 20161108-5124.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/29/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-319-000.

    Applicants: Southern California Edison Company.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: Amendment of LGIA for the Catalina Solar Project to be effective 1/9/2017.

    Filed Date: 11/8/16.

    Accession Number: 20161108-5086.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/29/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-320-000.

    Applicants: ISO New England Inc., New England Power Pool.

    Description: ISO New England Inc., et. al. submits Installed Capacity Requirement, Hydro Quebec Interconnection Capability Credits and Related Values for the 2020/2021 Capacity Commitment Period.

    Filed Date: 11/8/16.

    Accession Number: 20161108-5106.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/29/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-321-000.

    Applicants: ISO New England Inc.

    Description: ISO New England Inc. submits Informational filing for Qualification in the Forward Capacity Market.

    Filed Date: 11/8/16.

    Accession Number: 20161108-5108.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/23/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-322-000.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc., Otter Tail Power Company.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: 2016-11-08_SA 2970 Otter Tail Power-Northern States Power FSA (J262/J263) to be effective 10/26/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/8/16.

    Accession Number: 20161108-5113.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/29/16.

    The filings are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the links or querying the docket number.

    Any person desiring to intervene or protest in any of the above proceedings must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Regulations (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214) on or before 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date. Protests may be considered, but intervention is necessary to become a party to the proceeding.

    eFiling is encouraged. More detailed information relating to filing requirements, interventions, protests, service, and qualifying facilities filings can be found at: http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling/filing-req.pdf. For other information, call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: November 8, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27479 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. EL17-9-000] Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corporation; Tucson Electric Power Company; UNS Electric, Inc.; UniSource Energy Development Company; Notice of Institution of Section 206 Proceeding and Refund Effective Date

    On November 8, 2016, the Commission issued an order in Docket No. EL17-9-000, pursuant to section 206 of the Federal Power Act (FPA), 16 U.S.C. 824e (2012), instituting an investigation into the justness and reasonableness of Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corporation's, Tucson Electric Power Company's, UNS Electric, Inc.'s, and UniSource Energy Development Company's market-based rate authority in the Tucson Electric balancing authority area. Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corporation et al., 157 FERC ¶ 61,092 (2016).

    The refund effective date in Docket No. EL17-9-000, established pursuant to section 206(b) of the FPA, will be the date of publication of this notice in the Federal Register.

    Any interested person desiring to be heard in Docket No. EL17-9-000 must file a notice of intervention or motion to intervene, as appropriate, with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, in accordance with Rule 214 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure, 18 CFR 385.214 (2016), within 30 days of the date of issuance of the order.

    Dated: November 8, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27480 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings #1

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric rate filings:

    Docket Numbers: ER17-323-000.

    Applicants: PJM Interconnection, L.L.C.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: Member/Vendor Operating Agreement Section 3.1(b)(iii) Revisions to be effective 1/8/2017.

    Filed Date: 11/8/16.

    Accession Number: 20161108-5130.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/29/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-324-000.

    Applicants: Pinewood Wind, LLC, Long Prairie Wind I, LLC, Rocky Forge Wind, LLC.

    Description: Petition for Limited Waiver of Tariff Provisions and Request for Expedited Action of Pinewood Wind, LLC, et al.

    Filed Date: 11/8/16.

    Accession Number: 20161108-5159.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/29/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-325-000.

    Applicants: Arizona Public Service Company.

    Description: Tariff Cancellation: Cancellation of Service Agreement No. 355 to be effective 10/10/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/9/16.

    Accession Number: 20161109-5052.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/30/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-326-000.

    Applicants: Southwestern Public Service Company.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: 2016-11-09_SPS-RWSE-ChvCtySlr-680,681-0.1.0-NOC to be effective 11/10/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/9/16.

    Accession Number: 20161109-5057.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/30/16.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-327-000.

    Applicants: Arizona Public Service Company.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: Service Agreement No. 356, Ocotillo Modernization Project to be effective 10/10/2016.

    Filed Date: 11/9/16.

    Accession Number: 20161109-5058.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 11/30/16.

    The filings are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the links or querying the docket number.

    Any person desiring to intervene or protest in any of the above proceedings must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Regulations (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214) on or before 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date. Protests may be considered, but intervention is necessary to become a party to the proceeding.

    eFiling is encouraged. More detailed information relating to filing requirements, interventions, protests, service, and qualifying facilities filings can be found at: http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling/filing-req.pdf. For other information, call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: November 9, 2016. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27484 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Sunshine Act Meeting Notice November 10, 2016.

    The following notice of meeting is published pursuant to section 3(a) of the government in the Sunshine Act (Pub. L. 94-409), 5 U.S.C. 552b:

    AGENCY HOLDING MEETING:

    Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, DOE.

    DATE AND TIME:

    November 17, 2016, 10:00 a.m.

    PLACE:

    Room 2C, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    STATUS:

    OPEN.

    MATTERS TO BE CONSIDERED:

    Agenda.

    * NOTE—Items listed on the agenda may be deleted without further notice.

    CONTACT PERSON FOR MORE INFORMATION:

    Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary, Telephone (202) 502-8400.

    For a recorded message listing items struck from or added to the meeting, call (202) 502-8627.

    This is a list of matters to be considered by the Commission. It does not include a listing of all documents relevant to the items on the agenda. All public documents, however, may be viewed on line at the Commission's Web site at http://ferc.capitolconnection.org/ using the eLibrary link, or may be examined in the Commission's Public Reference Room.

    1032ND—Meeting Regular Meeting [November 17, 2016 10:00 a.m.] Item No. Docket No. Company Administrative A-1 AD16-1-000 Agency Administrative Matters. A-2 AD16-7-000 Customer Matters, Reliability, Security and Market Operations. A-3 AD07-13-010 2016 Report on Enforcement. A-4 AD17-3-000 Presentation on the Commission's Dam Safety Program. Electric E-1 RM16-23-000 Electric Storage Participation in Markets Operated by Regional Transmission Organizations and Independent System Operators. AD16-20-000 Electric Storage Participation in Regions with Organized Wholesale Electric Markets. E-2 RM16-5-000 Offer Caps in Markets Operated by Regional Transmission Organizations and Independent System Operators. E-3 RM16-6-000 Essential Reliability Services and the Evolving Bulk-Power System—Primary Frequency Response. E-4 RM16-15-000 Regulations Implementing FAST Act Section 61003—Critical Electric Infrastructure Security and Amending Critical Energy Infrastructure Information. RM15-25-001 Availability of Certain North American Electric Reliability Corporation Databases to the Commission. E-5 ER16-2528-000 Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc. E-6 ER17-144-000 New York Independent System Operator, Inc. E-7 TS16-1-000 NorthWestern Corporation. E-8 TS15-3-000 City of Rochester, Minnesota Board of Public Utilities. E-9 ER16-2437-000 Alcoa Power Generating Inc. E-10 ER13-108-001 Alcoa Power Generating Inc. E-11 EL16-105-000 Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company v. Entergy Texas, Inc. E-12 ER16-453-000 PJM Interconnection, L.L.C. and Northeast Transmission Development, LLC. ER16-453-001 E-13 ER15-2294-000 Pacific Gas and Electric Company. ER15-2294-002 E-14 ER05-6-124 Midwest Independent Transmission System Operator, Inc. EL04-135-126 Midwest Independent Transmission System Operator, Inc. and PJM Interconnection, LLC. EL02-111-145 EL03-212-140 Ameren Services Company. E-15 ER15-2239-000 NextEra Energy Transmission West, LLC. ER15-2239-001 Miscellaneous M-1 RM17-5-000 Regulations Implementing the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016 and Clarifying the FOIA Regulations. Hydro H-1 RM16-19-000 Annual Charges for Use of Government Lands in Alaska. H-2 P-2307-075 Alaska Electric Light and Power. P-12379-051 P-8221-098 Alaska Energy Authority. P-2170-054 Chugach Electric Association. P-420-088 Ketchikan Public Utilities. P-1922-048 P-11841-031 P-2742-037 Copper Valley Electric Association. P-2911-042 Southeast Alaska Power Agency. 3015-018 H-3 RM17-4-000 Establishing the Length of License Terms for Hydroelectric Projects. H-4 P-2114-279 Public Utility District No. 2 of Grant County, Washington. H-5 P-14754-001 Rivertec Partners, LLC. Certificates C-1 CP16-18-000 Magnum Gas Storage, LLC. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.

    A free webcast of this event is available through http://ferc.capitolconnection.org/. Anyone with Internet access who desires to view this event can do so by navigating to www.ferc.gov's Calendar of Events and locating this event in the Calendar. The event will contain a link to its webcast. The Capitol Connection provides technical support for the free webcasts. It also offers access to this event via television in the DC area and via phone bridge for a fee. If you have any questions, visit http://ferc.capitolconnection.org/ or contact Danelle Springer or David Reininger at 703-993-3100.

    Immediately following the conclusion of the Commission Meeting, a press briefing will be held in the Commission Meeting Room. Members of the public may view this briefing in the designated overflow room. This statement is intended to notify the public that the press briefings that follow Commission meetings may now be viewed remotely at Commission headquarters, but will not be telecast through the Capitol Connection service.

    [FR Doc. 2016-27625 Filed 11-14-16; 11:15 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Project No. 10674-016] Kaukauna Utilities; Notice of Intent To File License Application, Filing of Pre-Application Document, and Approving Use of the Traditional Licensing Process

    a. Type of Filing: Notice of Intent to File License Application and Request to Use the Traditional Licensing Process.

    b. Project No.: 10674-016.

    c. Date Filed: September 23, 2016.

    d. Submitted By: Kaukauna Utilities.

    e. Name of Project: Kimberly Hydroelectric Project.

    f. Location: On the Fox River, at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' Cedars Dam in the Village of Kimberly in Outagamie County, Wisconsin.

    g. Filed Pursuant to: 18 CFR 5.3 of the Commission's regulations.

    h. Potential Applicant Contact: Mike Pedersen, Manager of Generation and Operations, Kaukauna Utilities, 777 Island Street, P.O. Box 1777, Kaukauna, WI 54130-7077, phone: (920) 462-0220.

    i. FERC Contact: Colleen Corballis at (202) 502-8598; or email at [email protected]

    j. Kaukauna Utilities filed its request to use the Traditional Licensing Process on September 23, 2016. Kaukauna Utilities provided public notice of its request on October 25, 2016. In a letter dated November 8, 2016, the Director of the Division of Hydropower Licensing approved Kaukauna Utilities's request to use the Traditional Licensing Process.

    k. With this notice, we are initiating informal consultation with: (a) The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and NOAA Fisheries under section 7 of the Endangered Species Act and the joint agency regulations thereunder at 50 CFR, Part 402; (b) NOAA Fisheries under section 305(b) of the Magnuson- Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act and implementing regulations at 50 CFR 600.920; and (c) the Wisconsin State Historic Preservation Officer, as required by section 106, National Historical Preservation Act, and the implementing regulations of the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation at 36 CFR 800.2.

    l. With this notice, we are designating Kaukauna Utilities as the Commission's non-federal representative for carrying out informal consultation, pursuant to section 7 of the Endangered Species Act; section 305 of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act; and section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act.

    m. Kaukauna Utilities filed a Pre-Application Document (PAD; including a proposed process plan and schedule) with the Commission, pursuant to 18 CFR 5.6 of the Commission's regulations.

    n. A copy of the PAD is available for review at the Commission in the Public Reference Room or may be viewed on the Commission's Web site (http://www.ferc.gov), using the “eLibrary” link. Enter the docket number, excluding the last three digits in the docket number field to access the document. For assistance, contact FERC Online Support at [email protected], (866) 208-3676 (toll free), or (202) 502-8659 (TTY). A copy is also available for inspection and reproduction at the address in paragraph h.

    o. The licensee states its unequivocal intent to submit an application for a new license for Project No. 10674. Pursuant to 18 CFR 16.8, 16.9, and 16.10 each application for a new license and any competing license applications must be filed with the Commission at least 24 months prior to the expiration of the existing license. All applications for license for this project must be filed by September 30, 2019.

    p. Register online at http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/esubscription.asp to be notified via email of new filing and issuances related to this or other pending projects. For assistance, contact FERC Online Support.

    Dated: November 8, 2016. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27448 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [EPA-HQ-OPPT-2016-0511; FRL-9954-84] Certain New Chemicals or Significant New Uses; Statements of Findings for October 2016 AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    Section 5(g) of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) requires EPA to publish in the Federal Register a statement of its findings after its review of TSCA section 5(a) notices when EPA makes a finding that a new chemical substance or significant new use is not likely to present an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment. Such statements apply to premanufacture notices (PMNs), microbial commercial activity notices (MCANs), and significant new use notices (SNUNs) submitted to EPA under TSCA section 5. This document presents statements of findings made by EPA on TSCA section 5(a) notices during the period from September 20, 2016 to October 24, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For technical information contact: Greg Schweer, Chemical Control Divison (7405M), Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001; telephone number: 202-564-8469; email address: [email protected]

    For general information contact: The TSCA-Hotline, ABVI-Goodwill, 422 South Clinton Ave., Rochester, NY 14620; telephone number: (202) 554-1404; email address: [email protected]

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

    This action is directed to the public in general. As such, the Agency has not attempted to describe the specific entities that this action may apply to. Although others may be affected, this action applies directly to the submitters of the PMNs addressed in this action.

    B. How can I get copies of this document and other related information?

    The docket for this action, identified by docket identification (ID) number EPA-HQ-OPPT-2016-0511, is available at http://www.regulations.gov or at the Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics Docket (OPPT Docket), Environmental Protection Agency Docket Center (EPA/DC), West William Jefferson Clinton Bldg., Rm. 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC. The Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The telephone number for the Public Reading Room is (202) 566-1744, and the telephone number for the OPPT Docket is (202) 566-0280. Please review the visitor instructions and additional information about the docket available at http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

    II. What action is the agency taking?

    This document lists the statements of findings made by EPA after review of notices submitted under TSCA section 5(a) that certain new chemical substances or significant new uses are not likely to present an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment. This document presents statements of findings made by EPA during the period from September 20, 2016 to October 24, 2016.

    III. What is the agency's authority for taking this action?

    TSCA section 5(a)(3) requires EPA to review a TSCA section 5(a) notice and make one of the following specific findings:

    • The chemical substance or significant new use presents an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment;

    • The information available to EPA is insufficient to permit a reasoned evaluation of the health and environmental effects of the chemical substance or significant new use;

    • The information available to EPA is insufficient to permit a reasoned evaluation of the health and environmental effects and the chemical substance or significant new use may present an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment;

    • The chemical substance is or will be produced in substantial quantities, and such substance either enters or may reasonably be anticipated to enter the environment in substantial quantities or there is or may be significant or substantial human exposure to the substance; or

    • The chemical substance or significant new use is not likely to present an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment.

    Unreasonable risk findings must be made without consideration of costs or other non-risk factors, including an unreasonable risk to a potentially exposed or susceptible subpopulation identified as relevant under the conditions of use. The term “conditions of use” is defined in TSCA section 3 to mean “the circumstances, as determined by the Administrator, under which a chemical substance is intended, known, or reasonably foreseen to be manufactured, processed, distributed in commerce, used, or disposed of.”

    EPA is required under TSCA section 5(g) to publish in the Federal Register a statement of its findings after its review of a TSCA section 5(a) notice when EPA makes a finding that a new chemical substance or significant new use is not likely to present an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment. Such statements apply to premanufacture notices (PMNs), microbial commercial activity notices (MCANs), and significant new use notices (SNUNs) submitted to EPA under TSCA section 5.

    Anyone who plans to manufacture (which includes import) a new chemical substance for a non-exempt commercial purpose and any manufacturer or processor wishing to engage in a use of a chemical substance designated by EPA as a significant new use must submit a notice to EPA at least 90 days before commencing manufacture of the new chemical substance or before engaging in the significant new use.

    The submitter of a notice to EPA for which EPA has made a finding of “not likely to present an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment” may commence manufacture of the chemical substance or manufacture or processing for the significant new use notwithstanding any remaining portion of the applicable review period.

    IV. Statements of Administrator Findings Under TSCA Section 5(a)(3)(C)

    In this unit, EPA provides the following information (to the extent that such information is not claimed as Confidential Business Information (CBI)) on the PMNs, MCANs and SNUNs for which, during this period, EPA has made findings under TSCA section 5(a)(3)(C) that the new chemical substances or significant new uses are not likely to present an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment:

    • EPA case number assigned to the TSCA section 5(a) notice.

    • Chemical identity (generic name, if the specific name is claimed as CBI).

    • Web site link to EPA's decision document describing the basis of the “not likely to present an unreasonable risk” finding made by EPA under TSCA section 5(a)(3)(C).

    EPA Case Number: J-16-0019; Chemical identity: Trichoderma reesei modified (generic name); Web site link: https://www.epa.gov/reviewing-new-chemicals-under-toxic-substances-control-act-tsca/tsca-section-5a3c-determination-20.

    EPA Case Number: J-16-0020; Chemical identity: Trichoderma reesei modified (generic name); Web site link: https://www.epa.gov/reviewing-new-chemicals-under-toxic-substances-control-act-tsca/tsca-section-5a3c-determination-21.

    EPA Case Number: J-16-0021; Chemical identity: Trichoderma reesei modified (generic name); Web site link: https://www.epa.gov/reviewing-new-chemicals-under-toxic-substances-control-act-tsca/tsca-section-5a3c-determination-22.

    EPA Case Number: J-16-0022; Chemical identity: Trichoderma reesei modified (generic name); Web site link: https://www.epa.gov/reviewing-new-chemicals-under-toxic-substances-control-act-tsca/tsca-section-5a3c-determination-23.

    EPA Case Number: J-16-0023; Chemical identity: Trichoderma reesei modified (generic name); Web site link: https://www.epa.gov/reviewing-new-chemicals-under-toxic-substances-control-act-tsca/tsca-section-5a3c-determination-24.

    EPA Case Number: P-16-0459; Chemical identity: Carbomonocyclic dicarboxylic acid, polymer with alkanedioic acid, substituted heteropolycycle, substituted carbomonocycle, alkyl alkenoate, alkanedioic acid, alkoxylated substituted dicarbomonocycle, alkoxylated substituted dicarbomonocycle, alkenoic acid, oxo alkyl initiated (generic name); Web site link: https://www.epa.gov/reviewing-new-chemicals-under-toxic-substances-control-act-tsca/tsca-section-5a3c-determination-19.

    Authority:

    15 U.S.C. 2601 et seq.

    Dated: November 8, 2016. Maria J. Doa, Director, Chemical Control Division, Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27545 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [ER-FRL-9030-2] Environmental Impact Statements; Notice of Availability

    Responsible Agency: Office of Federal Activities, General Information (202) 564-7146 or http://www.epa.gov/nepa.

    Weekly receipt of Environmental Impact Statement Filed 11/07/2016 Through 11/11/2016 Pursuant to 40 CFR 1506.9. Notice

    Section 309(a) of the Clean Air Act requires that EPA make public its comments on EISs issued by other Federal agencies. EPA's comment letters on EISs are available at: http://www.epa.gov/compliance/nepa/eisdata.html.

    EIS No. 20160268, Final, OSM, PRO, Stream Protection Rule, Review Period Ends: 12/15/2016, Contact: Robin Ferguson 202-208-2802. Dated: November 14, 2016. Dawn Roberts, Management Analyst, NEPA Compliance Division, Office of Federal Activities.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27700 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    FEDERAL ELECTION COMMISSION Sunshine Act Meetings AGENCY:

    Federal Election Commission.

    DATE AND TIME:

    Thursday, November 17, 2016 at 10:00 a.m.

    PLACE:

    999 E Street NW., Washington, DC, (Ninth Floor).

    STATUS:

    This meeting will be open to the public.

    ITEMS TO BE DISCUSSED:

    Draft Advisory Opinion 2016-16: Gary Johnson 2012 Draft Advisory Opinion 2016-17: Libertarian Party of Michigan Executive Committee, Inc. Draft Advisory Opinion 2016-18: Ohio Green Party Draft Advisory Opinion 2016-19: Libertarian Party of Colorado Draft Advisory Opinion 2016-20: Christoph Mlinarchik, JD, CFCM Draft Advisory Opinion 2016-21: Great America PAC Proposed Amendments to Directive 52 Proposed Final Audit Report the Utah Republican Party (A13-16) Management and Administrative Matters

    Individuals who plan to attend and require special assistance, such as sign language interpretation or other reasonable accommodations, should contact Shelley E. Garr, Deputy Secretary, at (202) 694-1040, at least 72 hours prior to the meeting date.

    PERSON TO CONTACT FOR INFORMATION:

    Judith Ingram, Press Officer, Telephone: (202) 694-1220.

    Shawn Woodhead Werth, Secretary and Clerk of the Commission.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27621 Filed 11-14-16; 11:15 am] BILLING CODE 6715-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (HHS) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response (OPHPR) Board of Scientific Counselors, Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response, (BSC, OPHPR)

    In accordance with section 10(a)(2) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (Pub. L. 92-463), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), announces the following meeting of the aforementioned committee:

    TIMES AND DATES:

    10:00 a.m.-5:30 p.m., EST, December 14, 2016 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m., EST, December 15, 2016 PLACE:

    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Global Communications Center, Building 19, Classrooms 256/257, 1600 Clifton Road NE., Atlanta, Georgia 30329

    STATUS:

    Open to the public limited only by the space available. The meeting room will accommodate up to 40 people. Public participants should pre-register for the meeting as described below.

    Members of the public that wish to attend this meeting in person should pre-register by submitting the following information by email, facsimile, or phone (see Contact Person for More Information) no later than 12:00 noon (EST) on Tuesday, December 6, 2016:

    • Full Name

    • Organizational Affiliation

    • Complete Mailing Address

    • Citizenship

    • Phone Number or Email Address

    Web conferencing information:

    Web ID: https://ophpr-bsc.adobeconnect.com/december2016/

    Dial in number: 888-942-9042 Participant passcode: 3979208

    PURPOSE:

    This Board is charged with providing advice and guidance to the Secretary, Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Assistant Secretary for Health (ASH), the Director, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the Director, Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response (OPHPR), concerning strategies and goals for the programs and research within OPHPR, monitoring the overall strategic direction and focus of the OPHPR Divisions and Offices, and administration and oversight of peer review of OPHPR scientific programs. For additional information about the Board, please visit: http://www.cdc.gov/phpr/science/counselors.htm.

    MATTERS FOR DISCUSSION:

    Day one of the meeting will cover briefings and BSC deliberation on the following topics: Interval updates from OPHPR Divisions and Offices; updates on OPHPR'S policy agenda; PHPR research agenda; CDC surveillance strategies; and BSC liaison representative updates to the Board highlighting organizational activities relevant to the OPHPR mission.

    Day two of the meeting will cover briefings and BSC deliberation on the following topics: Biosafety and biosecurity regulations; radiation threat preparedness and response; medical countermeasures; and risk communications.

    CONTACT PERSON FOR MORE INFORMATION:

    Dometa Ouisley, Office of Science and Public Health Practice, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1600 Clifton Road NE., Mailstop D-44, Atlanta, Georgia 30329-4027, Telephone: (404) 639-7450; Facsimile: (404)639-7977; Email: [email protected]

    The Director, Management Analysis and Services Office, has been delegated the authority to sign Federal Register notices pertaining to announcements of meetings and other committee management activities for both the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry.

    Elaine L. Baker, Director, Management Analysis and Service Office, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27493 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4163-18-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Advisory Council for the Elimination of Tuberculosis Meeting (ACET)

    In accordance with section 10(a)(2) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (Pub. L. 92-463), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announces the following meeting of the aforementioned committee:

    Times and Dates: 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m., EST, December 12, 2016; 8:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m., EST, December 13, 2016.

    Place: Corporate Square, Building 8, 1st Floor Conference Room, Atlanta, Georgia 30329, telephone (404) 639-8317.

    This meeting is also accessible by Webinar:

    December 12, 2016

    For Participants:

    URL: https://www.mymeetings.com/nc/join/ Conference number: PW1642870 Audience passcode: 4727233 Participants can join the event directly at: https://www.mymeetings.com/nc/join.php?i=PW1642870&p=4727233&t=c USA Toll-free +1 (877) 951-7311, Participant code: 4727233 December 13, 2016

    For Participants:

    URL: https://www.mymeetings.com/nc/join/ Conference number: PW1642897 Audience passcode: 4727233 Participants can join the event directly at: https://www.mymeetings.com/nc/join.php?i=PW1642897&p=4727233&t=c USA Toll-free +1 (877) 951-7311, Participant code: 4727233

    Status: Open to the public, limited only by the space available. The meeting room accommodates approximately 100 people. Persons who desire to make an oral statement, may request it at the time of the public comment period on December 13, 2016 at 11:40 a.m., (EDT). Public participation and ability to comment will be limited to space and time as it permits.

    Purpose: This Council advises and makes recommendations to the Secretary of Health and Human Services, the Assistant Secretary for Health, and the Director, CDC, regarding the elimination of tuberculosis. Specifically, the Council makes recommendations regarding policies, strategies, objectives, and priorities; addresses the development and application of new technologies; and reviews the extent to which progress has been made toward eliminating tuberculosis.

    Matters for Discussion: Agenda items include the following topics: (1) Recently Published Data on TB in Jails and Prisons in the United States; (2) Expanded Latent TB Infection (LTBI) Testing and Treatment Plans (Massachusetts Demonstration Project); (3) Update on the National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD and TB Prevention Economic Modeling Agreement (NEEMA) TB Projects; (4) Updates from Workgroups; and (5) other tuberculosis-related issues. Agenda items are subject to change as priorities dictate.

    Contact Person for More Information: Margie Scott-Cseh, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1600 Clifton Road NE., M/S E-07, Atlanta, Georgia 30333, telephone (404) 639-8317.

    The Director, Management Analysis and Services Office, has been delegated the authority to sign Federal Register Notices pertaining to announcements of meetings and other committee management activities, for both the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry.

    Elaine L. Baker, Director, Management Analysis and Services Office,Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27492 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4163-18-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services [Document Identifiers CMS-10287] Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request AGENCY:

    Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, HHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is announcing an opportunity for the public to comment on CMS' intention to collect information from the public. Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), federal agencies are required to publish notice in the Federal Register concerning each proposed collection of information, including each proposed extension or reinstatement of an existing collection of information, and to allow a second opportunity for public comment on the notice. Interested persons are invited to send comments regarding the burden estimate or any other aspect of this collection of information, including any of the following subjects: (1) The necessity and utility of the proposed information collection for the proper performance of the agency's functions; (2) the accuracy of the estimated burden; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology to minimize the information collection burden.

    DATES:

    Comments on the collection(s) of information must be received by the OMB desk officer by December 16, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    When commenting on the proposed information collections, please reference the document identifier or OMB control number. To be assured consideration, comments and recommendations must be received by the OMB desk officer via one of the following transmissions:

    OMB, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs

    Attention: CMS Desk Officer

    Fax Number: (202) 395-5806 OR

    Email: [email protected]

    To obtain copies of a supporting statement and any related forms for the proposed collection(s) summarized in this notice, you may make your request using one of following:

    1. Access CMS' Web site address at http://www.cms.hhs.gov/PaperworkReductionActof1995.

    2. Email your request, including your address, phone number, OMB number, and CMS document identifier, to [email protected]

    3. Call the Reports Clearance Office at (410) 786-1326.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Reports Clearance Office at (410) 786-1326.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA) (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520), federal agencies must obtain approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for each collection of information they conduct or sponsor. The term “collection of information” is defined in 44 U.S.C. 3502(3) and 5 CFR 1320.3(c) and includes agency requests or requirements that members of the public submit reports, keep records, or provide information to a third party. Section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the PRA (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)) requires federal agencies to publish a 30-day notice in the Federal Register concerning each proposed collection of information, including each proposed extension or reinstatement of an existing collection of information, before submitting the collection to OMB for approval. To comply with this requirement, CMS is publishing this notice that summarizes the following proposed collection(s) of information for public comment:

    1. Type of Information Collection Request: Extension of a currently approved collection; Title of Information Collection: Medicare Quality of Care Complaint Form; Use: In accordance with Section 1154(a)(14) of the Social Security Act, Quality Improvement Organizations (QIOs) are required to conduct appropriate reviews of all written complaints submitted by beneficiaries concerning the quality of care received. The Medicare Quality of Care Complaint Form will be used by Medicare beneficiaries to submit quality of care complaints. This form will establish a standard form for all beneficiaries to utilize and ensure pertinent information is obtained by QIOs to effectively process these complaints. Form Number: CMS-10287 (OMB control number: 0938-1102); Frequency: Occasionally; Affected Public: Individuals and Households; Number of Respondents: 3,500; Total Annual Responses: 3,500; Total Annual Hours: 583. (For policy questions regarding this collection contact Winsome Higgins at 410-786-1835.)

    Dated: November 9, 2016 William N. Parham, III, Director, Paperwork Reduction Staff, Office of Strategic Operations and Regulatory Affairs.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27455 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4120-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration [Docket No. FDA-2016-N-3744] Site Visit Training Program for Office of Pharmaceutical Quality Staff; Information Available to Industry AGENCY:

    Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) in the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is announcing the 2017 CDER Office of Pharmaceutical Quality (OPQ) Staff Experiential Learning Site Visit Program. The purpose of this document is to invite pharmaceutical companies interested in participating in this program to submit a site visit proposal to CDER's OPQ.

    DATES:

    Submit either an electronic or written proposal to participate in this program by January 17, 2017. See section IV of this document for information on what to include in such proposals.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Janet Wilson, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 75, Rm. 4642, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002, 240-402-3969, email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    I. Background

    A critical part of the commitment by CDER to make safe and effective high-quality drugs available to the American public is gaining an understanding of all aspects of drug development and a drug's commercial life cycle, including the variety of drug manufacturing operations. To support this commitment, CDER has initiated various training and development programs, including the 2017 OPQ Staff Experiential Learning Site Visit Program. This site visit program is designed to offer experiential and firsthand learning opportunities that will provide OPQ staff with a better understanding of the pharmaceutical industry and its operations, as well as of the challenges that impact a drug's development program and commercial life cycle. The goal of these visits is to provide OPQ staff exposure to the drug development and manufacturing processes in industry; therefore, a tour of pharmaceutical company facilities is an integral part of the program.

    II. The Site Visit Program

    In this site visit program, groups of OPQ staff—who have experience in a variety of backgrounds, including science, statistics, manufacturing, engineering and testing—will observe operations of commercial manufacturing, pilot plants, and testing over a 1- to 2-day period. To facilitate the learning process for OPQ staff, overview presentations by industry related to drug development and manufacturing may be provided, which may allow the participating sites to benefit by having an opportunity to showcase their technologies and manufacturing processes.

    OPQ encourages companies engaging in the development and manufacturing of both drug substances and drug products to respond. However, please note that this site visit program is not intended to supplement or to replace a regulatory inspection, e.g., a preapproval inspection, pre-license inspection or a surveillance inspection. OPQ staff participating in this program will grow professionally by gaining a better understanding of current industry practices, processes, and procedures.

    Although observation of all aspects of drug development and production would be beneficial to OPQ staff, OPQ has identified a number of areas of particular interest to its staff. The following list identifies some of these areas but is not intended to be exhaustive or to limit industry response:

    • Drug products and active pharmaceutical ingredients ○ Solutions, suspensions, emulsions, and semisolids ○ Sustained, modified, and immediate release formulations ○ Drug-device combination products, particularly inhalation, transdermal, iontophoretic, and implant formulations ○ Biotechnology products • Design, development, manufacturing, and controls ○ Engineering controls for aseptic formulations ○ Unique delivery technologies ○ Hot melt extrusion processes ○ Soft-gel encapsulation processes ○ Lyophilization processes ○ Blow-Fill-Seal and isolators ○ Spray-drying processes ○ Process analytical technology and Real Time Release Testing • Emerging technologies ○ Continuous manufacturing ○ 3-dimensional printing ○ Nanotechnology III. Site Selection

    Selection of potential facilities will be based on the priorities developed for OPQ staff training, the facility's current regulatory status with FDA, and on consultation with the appropriate FDA district office. All travel expenses associated with this program will be the responsibility of OPQ; therefore, selection will be based on the availability of funds and resources for the fiscal year. OPQ will not provide financial compensation to the pharmaceutical site as part of this program.

    IV. Proposals for Participation

    Companies interested in offering a site visit or learning more about this site visit program should respond by submitting a proposal directly to Janet Wilson (see the DATES and FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT sections of this document for more information). To aid in OPQ's site selection, your proposal should include the following information:

    • A contact person • Site visit location(s) • Facility Establishment Identifier and DUNS numbers, as applicable • Maximum number of OPQ staff that can be accommodated during a site visit, and • A sample agenda outlining the proposed learning objectives and associated activities for the site visit Proposals submitted without this minimum information will not be considered. Based on response rate and type of responses, OPQ may or may not consider alternative pathways to meeting our training goals. Dated: November 9, 2016. Peter Lurie, Associate Commissioner for Public Health Strategy and Analysis.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27454 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4164-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES National Institutes of Health Office of the Director, National Institutes of Health; Notice of Meeting

    Pursuant to section 10(a) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. App.), notice is hereby given of a meeting of the Advisory Committee to the Director, National Institutes of Health.

    The meeting will be open to the public, with attendance limited to space available. Individuals who plan to attend and need special assistance, such as sign language interpretation or other reasonable accommodations, should notify the Contact Person listed below in advance of the meeting.

    Name of Committee: Advisory Committee to the Director, National Institutes of Health.

    Date: December 8, 2016.

    Time: 9:00 a.m. to 5:15 p.m.

    Agenda: NIH Director's Report, ACD Working Group Reports.

    Place: National Institutes of Health, Building 31, 6th Floor Conference Room 6C, 31 Center Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892.

    Date: December 9, 2016.

    Time: 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

    Agenda: Other business of the Committee.

    Place: National Institutes of Health, Building 31, 6th Floor Conference Room 6C, 31 Center Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892.

    Contact Person: Gretchen Wood, Staff Assistant, National Institutes of Health, Office of the Director, One Center Drive, Building 1, Room 126, Bethesda, MD 20892, 301-496-4272, [email protected]

    Any interested person may file written comments with the committee by forwarding the statement to the Contact Person listed on this notice. The statement should include the name, address, telephone number and when applicable, the business or professional affiliation of the interested person.

    In the interest of security, NIH has instituted stringent procedures for entrance onto the NIH campus. All visitor vehicles, including taxicabs, hotel and airport shuttles will be inspected before being allowed on campus. Visitors will be asked to show one form of identification (for example, a government-issued photo ID, driver's license, or passport) and to state the purpose of their visit.

    Information is also available on the Office of the Director, National Institutes of Health, home page: http://acd.od.nih.gov, where an agenda and any additional information for the meeting will be posted when available.

    (Catalogue of Federal Domestic Assistance Program Nos. 93.14, Intramural Research Training Award; 93.22, Clinical Research Loan Repayment Program for Individuals from Disadvantaged Backgrounds; 93.232, Loan Repayment Program for Research Generally; 93.39, Academic Research Enhancement Award; 93.936, NIH Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome Research Loan Repayment Program; 93.187, Undergraduate Scholarship Program for Individuals from Disadvantaged Backgrounds, National Institutes of Health, HHS)
    Dated: November 9, 2016. Anna Snouffer Deputy Director, Office of Federal Advisory Committee Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27463 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4140-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES National Institutes of Health Center for Scientific Review; Notice of Closed Meetings

    Pursuant to section 10(d) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. App.), notice is hereby given of the following meetings.

    The meetings will be closed to the public in accordance with the provisions set forth in sections 552b(c)(4) and 552b(c)(6), Title 5 U.S.C., as amended. The grant applications and the discussions could disclose confidential trade secrets or commercial property such as patentable material, and personal information concerning individuals associated with the grant applications, the disclosure of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.

    Name of Committee: Center for Scientific Review Special Emphasis Panel; Member Conflict: Cardiovascular Sciences.

    Date: November 30-December 1, 2016.

    Time: 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

    Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications.

    Place: National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892, (Virtual Meeting).

    Contact Person: Chee Lim, Ph.D., Center for Scientific Review, National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Room 4128, Bethesda, MD 20892, 301-435-1850, [email protected]

    Name of Committee: Center for Scientific Review Special Emphasis Panel; Member Conflict: Cardiovascular and Respiratory Special Emphasis Panel.

    Date: December 7, 2016.

    Time: 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

    Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications.

    Place: National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892, (Telephone Conference Call).

    Contact Person: Olga A Tjurmina, Ph.D., Scientific Review Officer, Center for Scientific Review, National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Room 4138, MSC 7814, Bethesda, MD 20892, (301) 451-1375, [email protected]

    Name of Committee: Center for Scientific Review Special Emphasis Panel; Member Conflict: Respiratory Sciences.

    Date: December 7-8, 2016.

    Time: 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

    Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications.

    Place: National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892, (Virtual Meeting).

    Contact Person: Chee Lim, Ph.D., Center for Scientific Review, National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Room 4128, Bethesda, md 20892, 301-435-1850, [email protected]

    Name of Committee: Center for Scientific Review Special Emphasis Panel; Member Conflict: Cardiovascular Development and Stem-cell-based Cardiac Repair and Regeneration.

    Date: December 8-9, 2016.

    Time: 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

    Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications.

    Place: National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892, (Virtual Meeting).

    Contact Person: Yuanna Cheng, MD, Ph.D., Scientific Review Officer, Center for Scientific Review, National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Room 4138, MSC 7814, Bethesda, MD 20892, (301) 435-1195, [email protected]

    Name of Committee: Center for Scientific Review Special Emphasis Panel; Vascular and Hematology AREA Application Review.

    Date: December 15, 2016.

    Time: 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

    Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications.

    Place: National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892, (Telephone Conference Call).

    Contact Person: Larry Pinkus, Ph.D., Scientific Review Officer, Center for Scientific Review, National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Room 4132, MSC 7802, Bethesda, MD 20892, (301) 435-1214, [email protected]

    Name of Committee: Center for Scientific Review Special Emphasis Panel; Member Conflict: AIDS and Related Research.

    Date: December 15, 2016.

    Time: 12:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

    Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications.

    Place: National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892, (Telephone Conference Call).

    Contact Person: Jingsheng Tuo, Ph.D., Scientific Review Officer, Center for Scientific Review, National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Room 5207, Bethesda, MD 20892, 301-451-8754, [email protected]

    (Catalogue of Federal Domestic Assistance Program Nos. 93.306, Comparative Medicine; 93.333, Clinical Research, 93.306, 93.333, 93.337, 93.393-93.396, 93.837-93.844, 93.846-93.878, 93.892, 93.893, National Institutes of Health, HHS)
    Dated: November 9, 2016. David Clary, Program Analyst, Office of Federal Advisory Committee Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27460 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4140-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES National Institutes of Health National Institute of Dental & Craniofacial Research; Notice of Closed Meeting

    Pursuant to section 10(d) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. App.), notice is hereby given of a meeting of the Board of Scientific Counselors, National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research.

    The meeting will be closed to the public as indicated below in accordance with the provisions set forth in section 552b(c)(6), Title 5 U.S.C., as amended for the review, discussion, and evaluation of individual intramural programs and projects conducted by the National Institute of Dental & Craniofacial Research, including consideration of personnel qualifications and performance, and the competence of individual investigators, the disclosure of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.

    Name of Committee: Board of Scientific Counselors, National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research.

    Date: December 7-8, 2016.

    Time: December 07, 2016, 9:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m.

    Agenda: To review and evaluate personal qualifications and performance, and competence of individual investigators.

    Place: National Institutes of Health Building 30, Room 117, 30 Center Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892.

    Time: December 08, 2016, 8:30 a.m. to Adjournment.

    Agenda: To review and evaluate personal qualifications and performance, and competence of individual investigators.

    Place: National Institutes of Health Building 30, Room 117, 30 Center Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892.

    Contact Person: Alicia J. Dombroski, Ph.D., Director, Division of Extramural Activities, National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892.

    In the interest of security, NIH has instituted stringent procedures for entrance onto the NIH campus. All visitor vehicles, including taxicabs, hotel, and airport shuttles will be inspected before being allowed on campus. Visitors will be asked to show one form of identification (for example, a government-issued photo ID, driver's license, or passport) and to state the purpose of their visit.

    Information is also available on the Institute's/Center's home page: http://www.nidcr.nih.gov/about/CouncilCommittees.asp, where an agenda and any additional information for the meeting will be posted when available.

    (Catalogue of Federal Domestic Assistance Program Nos. 93.121, Oral Diseases and Disorders Research, National Institutes of Health, HHS)
    Dated: November 8, 2016. Natasha M. Copeland, Program Analyst, Office of Federal Advisory Committee Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27462 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4140-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES National Institutes of Health Center for Scientific Review; Notice of Closed Meeting

    Pursuant to section 10(d) the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. App.), notice is hereby given of the following meeting.

    The meeting will be closed to the public in accordance with the provisions set forth in sections 552b(c)(4) and 552b(c)(6), Title 5 U.S.C., as amended. The grant applications and the discussions could disclose confidential trade secrets or commercial property such as patentable material, and personal information concerning individuals associated with the grant applications, the disclosure of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.

    Name of Committee: Center for Scientific Review Special Emphasis Panel; Psychiatric Genetics and Neurogenetics.

    Date: November 17, 2016.

    Time: 1:15 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

    Agenda: To review and evaluate grant applications.

    Place: National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892, (Telephone Conference Call).

    Contact Person: Cheryl M Corsaro, Ph.D., Scientific Review Officer, Center for Scientific Review, National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Room 2204, MSC 7890, Bethesda, MD 20892, (301) 435-1045, [email protected]

    This notice is being published less than 15 days prior to the meeting due to the timing limitations imposed by the review and funding cycle.

    (Catalogue of Federal Domestic Assistance Program Nos. 93.306, Comparative Medicine; 93.333, Clinical Research, 93.306, 93.333, 93.337, 93.393-93.396, 93.837-93.844, 93.846-93.878, 93.892, 93.893, National Institutes of Health, HHS)
    Dated: November 9, 2016. David Clary, Program Analyst, Office of Federal Advisory Committee Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27461 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4140-01-P
    ADVISORY COUNCIL ON HISTORIC PRESERVATION Notice of Adoption of Policy Statement on Historic Preservation and Community Revitalization AGENCY:

    Advisory Council on Historic Preservation.

    ACTION:

    Adoption of Policy Statement on Historic Preservation and Community Revitalization.

    SUMMARY:

    The Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP) adopted a Policy Statement on Historic Preservation and Community Revitalization.

    DATES:

    The final policy was adopted, and went into effect, on October 26, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Charlene Dwin Vaughn, AICP, Assistant Director, Office of Federal Agency Programs, ACHP, at 202-517-0207, or [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP) is an independent agency, created by the National Historic Preservation Act (54 U.S.C. 300101 et seq), that promotes the preservation, enhancement, and productive use of our Nation's historic resources, and advises the President and Congress on national preservation policy.

    Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (Section 106), 54 U.S.C. 306108), requires Federal agencies to consider the effects of projects that require federal approval, that receive federal financial assistance, or that are carried out by federal agencies, on historic properties and provide the ACHP a reasonable opportunity to comment with regard to such projects. ACHP has issued the regulations that set forth the process through which Federal agencies comply with these duties. Those regulations are codified under 36 CFR part 800.

    I. Background

    In March 2014, the ACHP issued the report entitled Managing Change: Preservation and Rightsizing in America, which can be accessed at http://www.achp.gov//RightsizingReport.pdf. This report focused on communities that were addressing rightsizing. The concept of rightsizing applies to communities undergoing substantial change due to economic decline population loss, increased amounts of vacancy and abandonment, decline in local services, increased homelessness and poverty, declining educational opportunities, and systemic blight. Rightsizing has been occurring in communities around the Nation for several decades as they respond to transformative events. The report contained the findings and recommendations of extensive research, on-site visits, and ACHP participation in panels and seminars during which diverse stakeholders shared their views regarding the effect on rightsizing in the community.

    As the ACHP explored options to implement the recommendations in the report, it was concluded in 2015 that the development of a policy statement would be appropriate to advance historic preservation principles. Therefore, the purpose of developing the Policy Statement on Historic Preservation and Community Revitalization is to ensure that preservation is considered as a tool that will assist federal, state, and local governments plan and implement revitalization projects and programs in a manner that will consider the reuse and rehabilitation of historic properties.

    In 2014, the Chairman of the ACHP convened a Working Group to assist in developing a draft policy statement. Representatives of the Working Group included the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the National Park Service, the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the American Assembly, the Cleveland Restoration Society, Preservation Research Office, Historic Districts Council, Preservation Rightsizing Network, the Michigan State Historic Preservation Officer, and ACHP expert member Bradford White, Chair of the Working Group.

    Following the development of the draft, the ACHP posted the proposed draft in the Federal Register on March 3, 2016, and comments from the public were accepted through April 4, 2016. Information regarding the March 3, 2016, Federal Register notice, was posted on the ACHP Web site. It was widely distributed by members of the Working Group to their respective constituencies through broadcast emails and electronic LISTSERVs including communities receiving Community Block Grant funds from HUD, the National Trust for Historic Preservation's Forum, the Preservation Rightsizing Network members, and the National Conference of State Historic Preservation Officers (NCSHPO). In addition, a broadcast email was sent to Tribal Historic Preservation Officers for their review. To ensure that all local communities received the draft, it was sent to organizations actively involved in Legacy Cities and rightsizing activities.

    Only thirteen (13) comments were submitted by the public on the draft policy statement. The majority of these commenters supported the draft and were eager for the ACHP to adopt the policy statement so that it could be implemented to advance local historic preservation. Four commenters, however, expressed concerns regarding a number of substantive issues and were basically critical about the ACHP's development of the draft policy. Major issues expressed by the four commenters included recommendations that the document should be revised to improve grammar and tone and references to the Section 106 process. They also took exception to the ACHP's use of flexible and programmatic solutions given their opinion that the ACHP had approved many contradictory systems over the years.

    Other noteworthy comments made by the objectors to the draft policy statement included the following: (1) The sequencing of the principles needed to be changed; (2) best practices and case studies needed to be incorporated in the draft to illustrate the principles; (3) failure to encourage flexibility when applying the Secretary of Interior's Standards for Rehabilitation (Secretary Standards); (4) more communities needed to be encouraged to become Certified Local Governments (CLGs); (5) allow CLGs to determine the National Register eligibility of properties; (6) educate stakeholders about how to apply the principles in the policy statement; (7) revise the ACHP's regulations as they include a dated framework for problem-solving; (8) acknowledge the benefits of state and local tax credits to communities; (9) public-private partnerships should be creative and incentivize the revitalization of neighborhoods; (10) allow residents to identify the resources they care about; (11) the policy is overly concerned with buildings and properties instead of concepts of place and landscapes; (12) acknowledge the immense scale of challenges for vacant and distressed buildings nationwide; (13) present the principles in the format of a Section 106 document; (14) public subsidy of historic preservation projects must avoid reinvestment in unsustainable areas; (15) all mitigation should be creative; and (16) change the tile to “Community Revitalization and Historic Preservation.”

    ACHP staff developed a Comment Matrix of the 104 substantive comments submitted by the 13 commenters. In addition to summarizing the comments and clarifying the ACHP's response, the draft Policy Statement was extensively revised to incorporate all pertinent recommendations. The title of the Policy Statement was retained as it ensured that the document would be used as a historic preservation tool. Further, the number of principles were increased from ten (10) to 13 and the sequencing was modified to ensure that the principles addressed the comments received from the public. The Working Group was advised that the policy statement should be inclusive and applicable to all communities. As such, it does not have the urban focus that was recommended. Principle III of the draft became Principle IV in the final policy. It recognizes the importance of technology and community input in the preparation of local inventories and surveys. Principle IX was revised to acknowledge that tax credits benefit small as well as large projects, and that beyond financial benefits in the form of equity, social and other economic benefits may also be accrued.

    While Section 106 applies to most projects that meet the definition of undertaking as outlined in 36 CFR 800.16(y), “when the agency determines that the undertaking is a type of activity that does not have the potential to cause effects on historic properties, assuming such historic properties were present, the official has no further obligations under section 106.” 36 CFR 800.3(a)(1). Therefore, the commenter that suggested that the use of all federal dollars should require compliance with Section 106 did not consider this provision or the fact that a Section 106 program alternative may also exclude certain federal activities. Likewise, the recommendation that federal funds must be allocated to support the development of comprehensive planning and revitalization strategies is incorrect. While the ACHP agrees with this recommendation in theory, a federal agency like HUD or the Rural Development under the Department of Agriculture would have to adopt this concept into their grant programs.

    The inclusion of references to Indian tribes in the policy statement was specifically requested by ACHP members. If they were excluded, the perspectives and concerns of Indian tribes would be minimized. Since Indian tribes are participants in the Section 106 consultations and provide expertise on the importance and significance of historic properties on tribal lands as well as historic properties located off-tribal lands which have religious and cultural significance to them, it is important that they be involved in the development of community revitalization strategies for communities located throughout the Nation.

    Comments submitted asserting that the National Register criteria are viewed as an impediment, and restrict effective citizen engagement were not specifically addressed in the final policy statement. These comments and the related suggestions argue that Section 106 of the NHPA is a dated framework. This is beyond the scope of the development of this policy statement. However, it should be noted that Principle V is revised to allow communities to recognize the value of places that are important to local residents. In addition, Principle VII emphasizes the need for diverse citizen engagement, which encourages that all residents should participate in the identification of historic properties.

    The Working Group determined that it was important to publish a current policy statement that reaffirmed the importance of historic preservation to the revitalization of all communities that must adapt to changing physical, social, and economic conditions. Federal urban policies disseminated since 2008 have not always consistently endorsed the importance of historic preservation in assistance programs. This policy statement will continue to promote the importance of federal leadership in historic preservation. Further, the policy statement will be continually updated to illustrate for stakeholders the application of the principles, and to educate citizens about the benefits of historic preservation as part of the revitalization of their communities. In collaboration with federal agencies and preservation organizations, the policy statement will be distributed to local, area, field, and regional staff so that the principles assist staff in planning and reviewing projects and developing new programs to help reverse the loss of historic properties as cities implement public-private programs throughout the community.

    The policy statement, which represents the conclusion of the research and public outreach efforts of the Working Group, ACHP staff, and deliberation of its members, was adopted by the ACHP by an unassembled meeting vote on October 26, 2016. The final text of the policy statement is provided in Section II of this notice.

    II. Text of the Policy

    This is the final text of the policy, as adopted by the ACHP on October 26, 2016:

    Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP) Policy Statement on Historic Preservation and Community Revitalization Introduction

    The 2010 U.S. Census revealed that, as a result of the significant decline in the economy beginning in 2008, an estimated 19 million properties were abandoned throughout the nation. As a result of the economic downturn, many buildings, in particular older and often historic properties, became vacant and abandoned. This has led to blighted conditions in many communities around the nation. Economists have compared the impacts of the economic downturn in 2008 to that of the Great Depression in the 1930s. Natural disasters, economic downturns, and the mortgage foreclosure crisis all occurred at the beginning of the 21st century, collectively eroding urban, rural, and tribal communities.

    While these events resulted in significant economic impacts across the country, they accelerated declines in population, tax base, industry, jobs, and housing markets caused by structural changes to the economy. Impacts were most severe in the Midwest, Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, and the South. The estimated demolition of 200,000 properties exemplifies the extreme actions taken by many communities, resulting in the loss of residences, commercial buildings, and even entire neighborhoods. Many of the properties that were lost included historic buildings that were listed in or eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places. The focus of media attention on these issues centered on “legacy cities,” the term used to describe older, industrial communities. But research has revealed that suburban, rural, and tribal communities also have dealt with similar problems.

    Communities identified as industrial centers were hit particularly hard and continue to struggle. These communities experienced shrinking population, declining property values, and high rates of residential vacancies and abandonments and required a holistic approach to bring about their revitalization.

    In 1966, Congress passed the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) and declared that “the historical and cultural foundations of the nation should be preserved in order to give a sense of orientation to the American people.” It further stated that “in the face of ever increasing extensions of urban centers, highways, and residential, commercial, and industrial developments, the present governmental and nongovernmental historic preservation programs are inadequate to ensure future generations a genuine opportunity to appreciate and enjoy the nation's rich heritage.”

    The congressional findings in the NHPA remain applicable today, particularly since the economic crisis of 2008. The Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP), established by the NHPA to advise the President and Congress on matters relating to historic preservation, considers local community revitalization critical to stabilizing these economically depressed communities. In overseeing federal project reviews required by Section 106 of the NHPA, the ACHP has seen that historic preservation reviews are often not completed before federal funds are allocated. Further, the funds are often ineffectively or inappropriately used to manage redevelopment in struggling communities. Preservation options are not considered, and opportunities to reuse existing assets are missed because of the severity of the issues confronted by communities.

    The ACHP sees a need to raise awareness of the potential community revitalization benefits from programs authorized by the NHPA and to provide an alternative framework for communities that have needs beyond the traditional historic preservation practices. To confront the challenge, community revitalization plans must be developed that address the disposition of vacant and abandoned properties, promote rehabilitation, create affordable housing, direct growth to target areas that have the infrastructure, and utilize new infill construction to stabilize neighborhoods or develop mixed use projects. Such plans can benefit from using the Secretary of the Interior's Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties (1995) (Secretary's Standards), as appropriate, as the framework for revitalizing housing, infrastructure, and commercial facilities. Further, involving historic preservation professionals who meet the Secretary's Standards as employees or contractors of local, regional, and state agencies can aid in developing and implementing effective community revitalization plans that build on historic assets.

    In March 2014, the ACHP issued a report entitled Managing Change: Preservation and Rightsizing in America, which focused on communities addressing “rightsizing.” Rightsizing applies when communities have shrinking populations, rising vacancy and abandonment, and systemic blight issues. The report clarified the role of historic preservation in rightsizing as well as noting relevant existing federal programs and policies. Reviewing extensive research, newspaper and journal articles, and organizational and institutional reports on rightsizing revealed that consideration of historic preservation issues in rightsizing decisions was often the exception. The ACHP report noted that rightsizing should include revitalization of historic fabric. Likewise, it noted that rightsizing is not uniquely an urban phenomenon. Rather, it encompasses a variety of communities, including older suburbs and rural and tribal communities. All are in need of technical assistance, education, and outreach to help residents, developers, and local officials approach revitalization using historic preservation tools that can be adapted to the 21st century.

    Purpose

    In accordance with Section 202 of the NHPA, the ACHP is issuing this Policy Statement to provide federal agencies; the individuals, organizations, and governments that apply for federal assistance; and their public and private partners with a flexible and creative approach to developing local community revitalization plans that involve historic properties. Likewise, the Policy Statement is intended to equip residents and community organizations with information on available tools and assist them in creating realistic strategies to integrate into revitalization plans the conservation and rejuvenation of the places and properties that define their neighborhoods.

    A major goal of the Policy Statement is assisting federal agencies and their grantees and applicants, State Historic Preservation Officers (SHPOs), Tribal Historic Preservation Officers (THPOs), Certified Local Governments (CLGs), and state and local governments in complying with the requirements of Section 106 of the NHPA. Section 106 requires federal agencies to take into account the effects of their undertakings on historic properties and afford the ACHP a reasonable opportunity to comment. With a predictable and consistent policy framework, or an alternative framework developed to address the unique circumstances faced by a community, federal agencies and applicants will be encouraged to integrate historic preservation principles in holistic community revitalization strategies. The policy acknowledges that consideration of alternatives to avoid or minimize harm to historic properties is essential when planning community revitalization projects. Further, by engaging varied stakeholders in the early stages of project planning, community revitalization projects can achieve multiple community goals.

    This Policy Statement builds on an earlier ACHP Policy Statement on Affordable Housing issued in 2006 (www.achp.gov/polstatements.html), continuing the ACHP's efforts to promote historic preservation in community revitalization and encourage the use of it as a tool to stabilize and enhance communities that have suffered from massive structural changes to their economy. It also recognizes that other communities, under less severe economic distress, could benefit from implementing the strategies described in the principles below.

    An underlying premise of the Policy Statement is the essential need for and value of local inventories and surveys, particularly in older neighborhoods that may be listed in or eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places (National Register) as historic districts. Only when local officials and the public are aware of the historic properties in their communities can they make informed decisions about treatment and reuse of these assets. Likewise, the National Register status also determines whether proposals must be afforded consideration in federal project planning under Section 106, or whether historic properties can qualify as “certified historic structures” eligible to receive the 20 percent Federal Historic Preservation Tax Credit (FHPTC) for the rehabilitation of historic, income-producing buildings. Other tax incentives are often coupled with this credit to revitalize historic neighborhoods, such as the Federal Low-Income Housing Tax Credit and state and local historic preservation tax incentives. Recent studies have documented that these tax incentive programs contribute to economic development and job production, making them a primary tool for revitalizing neighborhoods that were once considered blighted.

    The principles outlined below offer useful guidance that can assist communities in their efforts to incorporate historic preservation into planning revitalization efforts. Collaboration among federal, state, and local officials, SHPOs, THPOs, developers, residents, and other stakeholders is essential to successfully implement these principles. To foster such collaboration, this Policy Statement provides a framework that departs from traditional preservation doctrine in order to promote the effective contribution of historic assets to achieving community revitalization goals.

    Implementation Principles

    These principles are interpreted below to provide context for stakeholders who may consider applying them to their communities.

    I. Historic preservation principles should guide the preservation and reuse of older community assets.

    II. Historic preservation should be incorporated in local planning efforts that focus on sustainability and smart growth.

    III. Historic preservation should be incorporated into plans prepared by local governments that receive financial and technical assistance to build resilient communities.

    IV. Historic property inventories and surveys prepared by digital mapping and other traditional methods are tools that can assist communities seeking federal, state, and local resources for planning and revitalization projects.

    V. The flexibility inherent in the National Register criteria should be recognized by state and local governments when considering the significance of resources within distressed communities.

    VI. Early consideration of alternatives to avoid or minimize adverse effects of projects involving historic properties is essential to ensure the proper integration of historic properties in community revitalization plans.

    VII. Effective citizen engagement that reflects the diversity of the community can assist in identifying historic properties and cultural resources that should be recommended for preservation.

    VIII. Indian tribes may have an interest in urban and rural community revitalization projects and the effects they may have on historic properties to which they attach religious and cultural significance.

    IX. Tax credits and tax incentives can be used to promote historic preservation projects that preserve local assets.

    X. Flexibility in the treatment of some historic buildings in Section 106 reviews can help achieve broader neighborhood preservation goals.

    XI. Private resources can contribute to local revitalization efforts and also leverage public funds.

    XII. Flexible and programmatic solutions developed as part of Section 106 reviews can expedite historic preservation reviews as well as more effectively address the chronic demolition of historic properties.

    XIII. Creative mitigation that balances historic preservation values and program goals should be explored by stakeholders and incorporated into Section 106 outcomes.

    I. Historic preservation principles should guide the preservation and reuse of older community assets.

    Responding to the widespread destruction of historic resources during the urban renewal programs of the 1950s and 1960s, the NHPA was established to ensure local community revitalization and economic development projects were responsive to historic preservation principles. Unfortunately, 50 years later, the provisions of the NHPA requiring consideration of historic properties in project planning are not applied consistently by federal, state, and local governments. This is particularly the case when federal funds are allocated to local communities to address substantial amounts of vacant and abandoned buildings. Historic properties should be considered and evaluated as community assets because of their ability to endure cyclical changes and continue to provide shelter and economic development to residents of all incomes. Their treatment should be informed by an analysis of alternatives, including stabilization, rehabilitation, new infill construction, and, in certain cases, demolition. When integrated into project planning as prescribed by Section 106 of the NHPA, historic preservation tools can be beneficial to achieving local revitalization goals. Rather than being viewed as part of the problem, historic properties can be adapted and reused as a viable alternative. They should be given due consideration by federal, state, and local officials when developing comprehensive and small area plans and neighborhood vision frameworks. Although historic preservation is often ignored by stakeholders who express a desire for new construction, decades of successful historic preservation projects affirm that renewed historic assets can meet community expectations for modern uses while maintaining the character that traditionally defined the area.

    II. Historic preservation should be incorporated in local planning efforts that focus on sustainability and smart growth.

    The core principles in sustainability and smart growth have been embraced by urban and rural communities nationwide during the past decades. Smart growth is a cohesive group of planning principles that are focused on creating sustainable development patterns. Sustainable communities are focused on conserving and improving existing resources, including making historic assets such as buildings, neighborhoods, and communities greener, stronger, and more livable. Both smart growth and sustainability can foster historic preservation, emphasizing the value in preserving and reusing historic properties that illustrate the character of communities rather than filling up landfills with building materials. Successful historic preservation techniques often bring together both historic properties and compatible new construction to create a dynamic and attractive environment. Preserving historic properties not only retains streetscapes and original settings but also can create a focal point for a community to embrace its history, culture, and sense of place. This can be a major contribution to achieving community revitalization goals to stabilize distressed communities and to promote long-term viability.

    III. Historic preservation should be incorporated into plans prepared by local governments that receive financial and technical assistance to build resilient communities.

    In the aftermath of natural disasters, climate change events, and unanticipated emergencies, disaster recovery projects are often designed to revitalize and rebuild resilient communities. Communities also adopt practices before disasters strike to make them more resilient. Resilient communities are better able to recover from disasters and disruptions in a sustainable way and maintain their vitality and viability. Achieving community resiliency goals consistent with local historic preservation priorities requires aligning federal funding with local rebuilding visions, cutting red tape for obtaining assistance, developing region-wide plans for rebuilding, and ensuring that communities are rebuilt to better withstand future threats. Maintaining, rehabilitating, and reusing existing historic buildings can contribute to stabilizing and revitalizing neighborhoods. Community recovery and revitalization plans should be specific in their use and treatment of historic properties and coordinated with plans for new construction and infrastructure. Recognizing that historic preservation strategies are compatible with resilient community goals will enable planners to create housing choices, foster a sense of place, generate jobs, maintain walkable neighborhoods, and preserve open spaces. All these factors are critical to promoting resilient communities that include integration of historic properties.

    IV. Historic property inventories and surveys prepared by digital mapping and other traditional methods are tools that can assist communities seeking federal, state, and local resources for planning and revitalization projects.

    Historic property inventories and surveys developed by qualified professionals documenting historic properties within a local community are frequently incomplete and dated or too often completely lacking. The absence of this basic information can result in the inadvertent loss of historic properties as well as delays in project planning and implementation. Without the historical context explaining the evolution of neighborhoods and the significance of existing building stock, decision making is uninformed. In contrast, communities that have current, up to date historic property inventories and surveys which provide historic context; identify architecture, archaeological sites, and cultural resources; and define historic districts are able to assist local officials and developers in preparing effective revitalization strategies. When local governments use this tool in advance of applying for grants and loans, they can identify areas that should be given special attention in project planning and gather input from residents on what is important to them about their neighborhoods. Also, inventory and survey information allows local officials the flexibility of de-listing National Register properties when the integrity is lost due to neglect and extensive amounts of abandonment of historic properties.

    V. The flexibility inherent in the National Register criteria should be recognized by state and local governments when considering the significance of resources within distressed communities.

    The National Register is broad enough to recognize and include under-represented communities and find creative approaches to recognize the history and culture of areas and resources preserved against tremendous odds. It should be recognized that as communities have aged and assets have been neglected, particularly in distressed communities, physical integrity may suffer. However, such resources may still possess cultural and social significance that may qualify them nonetheless for their associative value to the community and as embodiment of broad patterns of history. Where local communities have prepared lists of local landmarks unique to the city, those resources may very well meet the National Register criteria for eligibility on the local level. Section 106 reviews can factor in this information when considering alternatives and mitigation. Federal and state agencies that prepare National Environmental Policy Act documents should already be including local heritage and culture under chapters on Social and Economic Conditions and Cultural Resources.

    VI. Early consideration of alternatives to avoid or minimize adverse effects of projects involving historic properties is essential to ensure the proper integration of historic properties in community revitalization plans.

    Effective utilization of historic properties to support community revitalization goals requires that preservation be an integral part of local planning from the outset. Strategic efforts to stabilize local neighborhoods in communities experiencing unprecedented amounts of vacancies and abandonment and substantial population loss should consider alternatives that can have a positive impact. Comprehensive neighborhood plans, small area plans, and more targeted vision frameworks should disclose the criteria and processes local officials use to determine specific treatment for buildings and sites. SHPOs can also provide technical assistance when resources are available. Likewise, communities with CLGs that work closely with SHPOs can participate in local administrative reviews and provide advice regarding how historic properties may be affected by community revitalization plans. SHPOs and CLGs can work with the local community development agencies and land banks to determine how they can facilitate building preservation, rehabilitation, and revitalization, as well as plans proposed for substantial demolitions in target areas or on a community-wide basis. Essential to effective early planning is the engagement of the local community that is affected by the proposed action.

    VII. Effective citizen engagement that reflects the diversity of the community can assist in identifying historic properties and cultural resources that should be recommended for preservation.

    The consultation process carried out under Section 106 is designed to elicit effective and informed citizen engagement. Public participation will help to identify places and historic properties important to the community early in the consultation process and foster creative solutions that accommodate the community's heritage with revitalization. Special attention should be given to including diverse residents in communities that have been overlooked in prior identification efforts. Places associated with under-represented communities are not broadly listed on the National Register, so it is important that local officials make citizen engagement a priority when evaluating properties for National Register eligibility in the Section 106 process or developing surveys and inventories. SHPOs can often assist local officials in providing historic context statements for such properties and existing information on community resources. Involving local academic institutions, civic organizations, professional associations, neighborhood associations, and tribal representatives in the work of local preservation commissions and architectural review boards can help ensure that the views of all segments of the community inform the identification and evaluation of historic properties. Citizen engagement also is critical in the analysis of project alternatives to deal with adverse effects of revitalization projects on historic properties. Many of the outcomes from Section 106 reviews are shaped by recommendations from citizens who participate as consulting parties in the process. Federal and local officials provide guidance and technical assistance to facilitate citizen engagement in completing inventories and surveys, developing local project plans, and participating in the required project review processes.

    VIII. Indian tribes may have an interest in urban and rural community revitalization projects and the effects they may have on historic properties to which they attach religious and cultural significance.

    It is important to involve Indian tribes in Section 106 reviews, particularly in the identification and evaluation of historic properties and assessment of effects. Since THPOs and Indian tribes are required to be invited to participate in Section 106 as consulting parties, federal and local officials should become familiar with those Indian tribes that have ancestral and historic associations with their communities. It is important that planners look beyond archaeologists in assessing the significance of sites, as these resources often have traditional cultural or religious value to Native Americans. Indian tribes can also contribute to local sustainability efforts based on their ecological and environmental knowledge of geographic areas to which they have traditional ties. Involving THPOS and Indian tribes early in Section 106 consultations allows them to advise the federal agency of protocols that should be followed in the event of unanticipated discoveries of sites. Finally, Indian tribes can provide relevant input to the agency officials in developing mitigation measures when sites cannot be avoided.

    IX. Tax credits and tax incentives can be used to promote historic preservation projects that preserve local assets.

    Recent research conducted on the impacts of using Federal Historic Preservation Tax Credits (FHPTC) have revealed that investments in historic rehabilitation have greater positive impact on employment, state and local taxes, and the financial strength of the state than new construction. The use of FHPTCs, Low Income Housing Tax Credits, state historic tax credits, and local historic tax credits can often be combined to provide neighborhoods with financial, social, and economic benefits. Local governments should consider how these incentives can be used to fund not only major projects but also small and mid-size neighborhood projects that involve local historic properties. SHPOs are uniquely situated to leverage FHPTC projects, having worked closely with the National Park Service and developers on previous projects. Further, local officials can collaborate with federal regional and field offices, land banks, SHPOs, and local real estate agents to identify vacant and abandoned buildings that are candidates for rehabilitation. By focusing on stabilizing anchor buildings in a neighborhood, local governments can protect these sites and make them available to developers who intend to revitalize target areas with major projects such as those for affordable housing and transit-oriented development.

    X. Flexibility in the treatment of some historic buildings in Section 106 reviews can help achieve broader neighborhood preservation goals.

    Sometimes historic neighborhoods confront significant abandonment and serious deterioration of building stock, such that rehabilitation and reuse becomes an overwhelming challenge. Participants in Section 106 consultations should be receptive to considering different treatment measures, including new infill construction meeting the Secretary's Standards, substitute materials, and strategic demolition, when there is concurrence that such an approach is the best approach to achieving broader community revitalization and preservation goals. It is strongly encouraged that federal agencies and applicants utilize historic preservation professionals to help determine when and how it may be appropriate to apply flexibility in the treatment of individual buildings.

    XI. Private resources can contribute to local revitalization efforts and also leverage public funds.

    Private resources are instrumental in ensuring most community revitalization efforts are successful and transformative. Examples of federal grant and loan programs used in conjunction with private resources for local revitalization efforts include the Department of Transportation's TIGER Program and the Environmental Protection Agency's Brownfield Grants. These programs require local communities to provide matching funds, which are often solicited from the private sector. Local institutions such as universities, hospitals, foundations, banks, land banks, and local businesses are frequently the source for matching funds. In addition, they often partner with developers on multi-use projects that benefit the community as a whole. Banking institutions are able to get credit under the federal Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) program when they contribute to local revitalization efforts. A bank's CRA performance record is taken into account when evaluating its overall performance. Therefore, project proponents and local officials should reach out to local banking institutions to discuss strategies regarding loans for commercial and residential community revitalization projects. When using private resources to assist with revitalization projects, local officials should inform the funding entity of the importance of the local historic preservation principles to the community to ensure they are not inadvertently compromised.

    XII. Flexible and programmatic solutions developed as part of Section 106 reviews can expedite historic preservation reviews as well as more effectively address the chronic demolition of historic properties.

    Community revitalization projects with federal involvement require compliance with Section 106 and other federal environmental laws. Frequently, programmatic solutions that address the broad effects resulting from the implementation of multiple projects can expedite compliance with regulatory requirements, improving the efficiency of project delivery. Section 106 Programmatic Agreements, which are quite varied, are intended to manage multiple projects that result in similar types of effects, can respond to local conditions, foster community preservation goals, and expedite project reviews. Such agreements often clarify that plans and specifications developed for local community revitalization projects should adhere to the recommended approaches in the Secretary's Standards, when feasible, and qualify for simplified reviews. When communities cannot consistently adhere to the Secretary's Standards, they should consider developing project plans that are based largely on the Secretary's Standards but provide greater flexibility. The public interest in preservation should guide planning, such as focusing reviews on exterior features and limiting reviews of interior spaces to those areas open to the public. Planning for larger scale revitalization projects should occur in advance of submitting applications for federal monies, and allow local officials to target any grants received into grants and loans to areas that can be stabilized. Given the often changing financial market and the passage of time in many communities where revitalization activities are limited, securing and stabilizing buildings may be a useful interim measure. It can avoid the loss of substantial numbers of historic properties in areas that may ultimately rebound.

    XIII. Creative mitigation that balances historic preservation values and program goals should be explored by stakeholders and incorporated into Section 106 outcomes.

    “Creative mitigation” is a concept that allows federal agencies, in consultation with stakeholders, to use non-traditional approaches to compensate for adverse effects that cannot be avoided or offset by using standard mitigation techniques. In Section 106 reviews, standard mitigation measures are customarily directed at the affected historic property and may include recordation, data recovery, or curation. Sometimes the public benefit of using these standard measures is minimal, and allocation of funds for other preservation activities would be prudent. Federal agencies, SHPOs, CLGs, and other consulting parties are encouraged to be open to creative mitigation when consulting to resolve adverse effects on historic properties. Any mitigation for the loss of historic properties or materials should both provide public benefit and be commensurate with the extent of loss. The activities proposed in creative mitigation measures also should leverage the federal assistance in a manner that produces broader public benefits. Discussions about creative mitigation should be initiated early in the Section 106 review process when options can be objectively evaluated and before project plans and commitments become firm. Creative mitigation measures ultimately should advance community-wide preservation goals discussed during Section 106 reviews. Examples of creative mitigation that have been successful include the development of local historic preservation ordinances; acquisition and relocation of historic properties to alternate sites in a historic district; funding for landscaping and streetscape improvements in a district; and guidance on managing vacant and abandoned properties in the community.

    Conclusion

    Federal, state, and local officials; applicants; residents; and preservationists are encouraged to use the above principles when developing community revitalization plans and coordinating Section 106 reviews. Please visit the ACHP's Web site, www.achp.gov, to view helpful case studies and best management practices and to learn about webinars that can further expand knowledge of these historic preservation tools and how they are being used throughout the nation.

    Authority:

    54 U.S.C. 304102

    Dated: November 9, 2016. John M. Fowler, Executive Director.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27536 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310-K6-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Federal Emergency Management Agency [Docket ID FEMA-2016-0021; OMB No. 1660-0110] Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; FEMA Preparedness Grants: Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI) Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP) AGENCY:

    Federal Emergency Management Agency, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will submit the information collection abstracted below to the Office of Management and Budget for review and clearance in accordance with the requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. The submission will describe the nature of the information collection, the categories of respondents, the estimated burden (i.e., the time, effort and resources used by respondents to respond) and cost, and the actual data collection instruments FEMA will use.

    DATES:

    Comments must be submitted on or before December 16, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit written comments on the proposed information collection to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget. Comments should be addressed to the Desk Officer for the Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency, and sent via electronic mail to [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Requests for additional information or copies of the information collection should be made to Director, Records Management Division, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472-3100, or email address [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This information collection previously published in the Federal Register on August 22, 2016, 81 FR 56679 with a 60 day public comment period. No comments were received. The purpose of this notice is to notify the public that FEMA will submit the information collection abstracted below to the Office of Management and Budget for review and clearance.

    Collection of Information

    Title: FEMA Preparedness Grants: Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI) Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP).

    Type of information collection: Revision of a currently approved information collection.

    OMB Number: 1660-0110.

    Form Titles and Numbers: FEMA Form 089-25, NSGP Investment Justification Template; FEMA Form 089-24, NSGP Prioritization of the Investment Justifications.

    Abstract: The NSGP is an important tool among a comprehensive set of measures to help strengthen the Nation against risks associated with potential terrorist attacks. FEMA uses the information to evaluate applicants' familiarity with the national preparedness architecture and identify how elements of this architecture have been incorporated into regional/state/local planning, operations, and investments. Information collected provides narrative details on proposed activities (Investments) that will be accomplished with grant funds and prioritizes the list of applicants from each requesting State. This program is designed to promote coordination and collaboration in emergency preparedness activities among public and private community representatives, State and local government agencies, and Citizen Corps Councils.

    Affected Public: Not-for-profit Institutions; State, Local or Tribal Government.

    Estimated Number of Respondents: 1,129.

    Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 94,575 hours.

    Estimated Cost: The estimated annual cost to respondents for the hour burden is $3,380,775. There are no annual costs to respondents operations and maintenance costs for technical services. There is no annual start-up or capital costs. The cost to the Federal Government is $258,006.

    Dated: November 9, 2016. Richard W. Mattison, Records Management Program Chief, Mission Support, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Department of Homeland Security.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27554 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9111-46-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Federal Emergency Management Agency [Docket ID: FEMA-2016-0020; OMB No. 1660-0113] Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; FEMA Preparedness Grants: Tribal Homeland Security Grant Program (THSGP) AGENCY:

    Federal Emergency Management Agency, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will submit the information collection abstracted below to the Office of Management and Budget for review and clearance in accordance with the requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. The submission will describe the nature of the information collection, the categories of respondents, the estimated burden (i.e., the time, effort and resources used by respondents to respond) and cost, and the actual data collection instruments FEMA will use.

    DATES:

    Comments must be submitted on or before December 16, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit written comments on the proposed information collection to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget. Comments should be addressed to the Desk Officer for the Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency, and sent via electronic mail to [email protected].

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Requests for additional information or copies of the information collection should be made to Director, Records Management Division, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472-3100, or email address [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This information collection previously published in the Federal Register on August 22, 2016, 81 FR 56675 with a 60 day public comment period. No comments were received. The purpose of this notice is to notify the public that FEMA will submit the information collection abstracted below to the Office of Management and Budget for review and clearance.

    Collection of Information

    Title: FEMA Preparedness Grants: Tribal Homeland Security Grant Program (THSGP).

    Type of Information Collection: Extension, without change, of a currently approved information collection.

    OMB Number: 1660-0113.

    Form Titles and Numbers: FEMA Form 089-22, THSGP—Tribal Investment Justification Template.

    Abstract: The THSGP provides supplemental funding to directly eligible Tribes to help strengthen the nation against risks associated with potential terrorist attacks. This program provides funds to build capabilities at the State & local levels and implement goals and objectives included in state homeland security strategies.

    Affected Public: State, Local, or Tribal Government.

    Estimated Number of Respondents: 60.

    Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 18,010 hours.

    Estimated Cost: The estimated annual cost to respondents for the hour burden is $701,129.30. There are no annual costs to respondents operations and maintenance costs for technical services. There is no annual start-up or capital costs. The cost to the Federal Government is $399,576.50.

    Dated: November 9, 2016. Richard W. Mattison, Records Management Program Chief, Mission Support, Federal Emergency Management Agency, Department of Homeland Security.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27557 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9111-46-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY [Docket No. DHS-2016-0065] The President's National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee AGENCY:

    Department of Homeland Security.

    ACTION:

    Committee Management; Notice of partially Closed Federal Advisory Committee Meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The President's National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee (NSTAC) will meet on Wednesday, December 7, 2016, in Washington, DC The meeting will be partially closed to the public.

    DATES:

    The NSTAC will meet on Wednesday, December 7, 2016, from 9:00 a.m. to 3:20 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST). Please note that the meeting may close early if the committee has completed its business.

    ADDRESSES:

    The December 2016 NSTAC Meeting's open session will be held at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, Washington, DC. Due to limited seating, requests to attend in person will be on a first-come basis and the public portion of the meeting will be streamed via webcast at http://www.whitehouse.gov/live, as an alternative option. Individuals who intend to participate in the meeting will need to register by sending an email to [email protected] by 5:00 p.m. EST on Wednesday, November 30, 2016. For information on facilities or services for individuals with disabilities, or to request special assistance at the meeting, please contact [email protected] as soon as possible.

    Members of the public are invited to provide comment on the issues to be considered by the committee as listed in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section below. Associated briefing materials to be discussed at the meeting will be available at www.dhs.gov/nstac for review on Monday, November 21, 2016. Comments may be submitted at any time and must be identified by docket number DHS-2016-0065.

    Comments may be submitted by one of the following methods:

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Please follow the instructions for submitting written comments.

    Email: [email protected] Include the docket number DHS-2016-0065 in the subject line of the email message.

    Fax: (703) 235-5962, ATTN: Sandy Benevides.

    Mail: Designated Federal Officer, Stakeholder Engagement and Critical Infrastructure Resilience Division, National Protection and Programs Directorate, Department of Homeland Security, 245 Murray Lane, Mail Stop 0604, Arlington, VA 20598-0604.

    Instructions: All submissions received must include the words “Department of Homeland Security” and the docket number for this action. Comments received will be posted without alteration at www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided.

    Docket: For access to the docket and comments received by the NSTAC, please go to www.regulations.gov and enter docket number DHS-2016-0065.

    A public comment period will be held during the meeting from 2:50 p.m. to 3:20 p.m. Speakers who wish to participate in the public comment period must register in advance and can do so by emailing [email protected] no later than Friday, December 2, 2016, at 5:00 p.m. EST. Speakers are requested to limit their comments to three minutes. Please note that the public comment period may end before the time indicated, following the last call for comments.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Helen Jackson, NSTAC Designated Federal Officer, Department of Homeland Security, (703) 235-5321 (telephone) or [email protected] (email).

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Notice of this meeting is given under the Federal Advisory Committee Act, 5 U.S.C. appendix (Pub. L. 92-463). The NSTAC advises the President on matters related to national security and emergency preparedness (NS/EP) telecommunications policy.

    Agenda: The committee will meet in an open session on December 7, 2016, to receive remarks from Department of Homeland Security (DHS) leadership and other senior Government officials regarding the Government's current cybersecurity initiatives and NS/EP priorities. Meeting participants will: (1) Receive a keynote address regarding the Government's ongoing cybersecurity and NS/EP communications efforts; (2) engage in a panel discussion with senior Government officials regarding the effects of new technology on NS/EP processes and procedures; and (3) discuss the progress related to the draft National Cyber Incident Response Plan. Additionally, DHS will provide NSTAC members an update on the Government's progress in implementing recent NSTAC recommendations. Finally, the NSTAC members will receive an update on the NSTAC Emerging Technologies Strategic Vision Subcommittee's study of the near- and long-term NS/EP implications of emergent and expected information and communications technologies.

    The committee will also meet in a closed session to receive a classified briefing regarding cybersecurity threats and discuss future studies based on the Government's NS/EP priorities and perceived vulnerabilities.

    Basis for Closure: In accordance with 5 U.S.C. 552b(c), The Government in the Sunshine Act, it has been determined that two agenda items require closure, as the disclosure of the information discussed would not be in the public interest.

    The first of these agenda items, the classified briefing, will provide members with a cybersecurity threat briefing on threats to critical infrastructure. Disclosure of these threats would provide criminals who seek to compromise commercial and Government networks with information on potential vulnerabilities and mitigation techniques, weakening the Nation's cybersecurity posture. This briefing will be classified at the top secret/sensitive compartmented information level, thereby exempting disclosure of the content by statute. Therefore, this portion of the meeting is required to be closed pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(1)(A) & (B).

    The second agenda item, the discussion of potential NSTAC study topics, will address areas of critical cybersecurity vulnerabilities and priorities for Government. Government officials will share data with NSTAC members on initiatives, assessments, and future security requirements across public and private sector networks. The information will include specific vulnerabilities within cyberspace that affect the United States' ICT infrastructures and proposed mitigation strategies. Disclosure of this information to the public would provide criminals with an incentive to focus on these vulnerabilities to increase attacks on the Nation's critical infrastructure and communications networks. As disclosure of this portion of the meeting is likely to significantly frustrate implementation of proposed DHS actions, it is required to be closed pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(9)(B).

    Dated: November 9, 2016. Helen Jackson, Designated Federal Officer for the NSTAC.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27572 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY [Docket No. DHS-2016-0056] Meeting: Homeland Security Advisory Council AGENCY:

    The Office of Partnership and Engagement, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice of partially closed Federal Advisory Committee meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The Homeland Security Advisory Council (“Council”) will meet in person on Thursday, December 1, 2016. Members of the public may participate in person. The meeting will be partially closed to the public.

    DATES:

    The Council will meet Thursday, December 1, 2016, from 10:15 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. EST. The meeting will be open to the public from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. EST. Please note the meeting may close early if the Council has completed its business. The meeting will be closed to the public from 10:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 3:45 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. EST.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting will be held at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars (“Wilson Center”), located at 1300 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20004. All visitors will be processed through the lobby of the Wilson Center. Written public comments prior to the meeting must be received by 5:00 p.m. EST on Monday, November 28, 2016, and must be identified by Docket No. DHS-2016-0056. Written public comments after the meeting must be identified by Docket No. DHS-2016-0056 and may be submitted by one of the following methods:

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

    Email: [email protected] Include Docket No. DHS-2016-0056 in the subject line of the message.

    Fax: (202) 282-9207

    Mail: Homeland Security Advisory Council, Attention Mike Miron, Department of Homeland Security, Mailstop 0445, 245 Murray Lane SW., Washington, DC 20528.

    Instructions: All submissions received must include the words “Department of Homeland Security” and “DHS-2016-0056,” the docket number for this action. Comments received will be posted without alteration at http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided.

    Docket: For access to the docket to read comments received by the Council, go to http://www.regulations.gov, search “DHS-2016-0022,” “Open Docket Folder” and provide your comments.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Mike Miron at [email protected] or at (202) 447-3135.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Notice of this meeting is given under Section 10(a) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), Public Law 92-463 (5 U.S.C. Appendix), which requires each FACA committee meeting to be open to the public.

    The Council provides organizationally independent, strategic, timely, specific, actionable advice, and recommendations to the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security on matters related to homeland security. The Council is comprised of leaders of local law enforcement, first responders, federal, state, and local government, the private sector, and academia.

    The Council will meet in an open session between 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. EST. The Council may review and deliberate on the Privatized Immigration Detention Facilities Subcommittee's interim report or final recommendations, and receive an update from the Countering Violent Extremism Subcommittee.

    The Council will meet in a closed session from 10:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. EST, and from 3:45 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. EST, to receive sensitive operational information from senior officials on current counterterrorism threats, the Presidential transition, the Transportation and Security Administration, and cybersecurity.

    Basis for Partial Closure: In accordance with Section 10(d) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security has determined this meeting requires partial closure. The disclosure of the information relayed would be detrimental to the public interest for the following reasons:

    The Council will receive closed session briefings from senior officials. These briefings will concern matters sensitive to homeland security within the meaning of 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(7)(E) and 552b(c)(9)(B). The Council will receive operational counterterrorism updates on the current threat environment and security measures associated with countering such threats, including those related to aviation security programs, the Presidential transition, and cybersecurity.

    The session is closed under 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(7)(E) because disclosure of that information could reveal investigative techniques and procedures not generally available to the public, allowing terrorists and those with interests against the United States to circumvent the law and thwart the Department's strategic initiatives. In addition, the session is closed pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(9)(B) because disclosure of these techniques and procedures could frustrate the successful implementation of protective measures designed to keep our country safe.

    Participation: Members of the public will have until 5:00 p.m. EST on Monday, November 28, 2016, to register to attend the Council meeting on December 1, 2016. Due to limited availability of seating, admittance will be on a first-come first-serve basis. Participants interested in attending the meeting can contact Mike Miron at [email protected] or (202) 447-3135. You are required to provide your full legal name, date of birth, and company/agency affiliation. The public may access the facility via public transportation or use the public parking garages located near the Wilson Center. Directions to the Wilson Center can be found at: http://wilsoncenter.org/directions. Members of the public will meet at 1:00 p.m. EST at the Wilson Center's main entrance for sign in and escorting to the meeting room for the public session. Late arrivals after 1:30 p.m. EST will not be permitted access to the facility.

    Facility Access: You are required to present a valid original government issued ID, to include a State Driver's License or Non-Driver's Identification Card, U.S. Government Common Access Card (CAC), Military Identification Card or Person Identification Verification Card; U.S. Passport, U.S. Border Crossing Card, Permanent Resident Card or Alien Registration Card; or Native American Tribal Document.

    Information of Services for Individuals with Disabilities: For information on facilities or services for individuals with disabilities, or to request special assistance at the meeting, contact Mike Miron at [email protected] or (202) 447-3135 as soon as possible.

    Dated: November 10, 2016. Sarah E. Morgenthau, Executive Director, Homeland Security Advisory Council, DHS.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27539 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT [Docket No. FR-5855-N-04] Small Area Fair Market Rents in Housing Choice Voucher Program Values for Selection Criteria and Metropolitan Areas Subject to Small Area Fair Market Rents AGENCY:

    Office of the Assistant Secretary for Policy Development and Research, HUD.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    On June 16, 2016, HUD sought comment on applying Small Area Fair Market Rents (Small Area FMRs) to certain metropolitan areas for administration of the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) program based on certain selection criteria and selection values. Found elsewhere in this issue of the Federal Register is a final rule adopting the use of Smalls Area FMRs for the HCV program and the selection criteria. The final rule also requires HUD to set forth the values used to determine those metropolitan areas that are subject to Small Area FMRs through a Federal Register notice. This notice sets forth the values for the selection criteria and lists the metropolitan areas that will be subject to Small Area FMRs implemented in the Small Area FMRs final rule.

    DATES:

    Effective: January 17, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For information about this rule, contact Peter B. Kahn, Director, Economic and Market Analysis Division, Office of Economic Affairs, Office of Policy Development and Research, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, 451 7th Street SW., Washington, DC 20410, telephone (202) 402-2409; email: [email protected] The listed telephone number is not a toll-free number. Persons with hearing or speech impairments may access this number through TTY by calling Federal Relay Service at 1-800-877-8339 (this is a toll-free number).

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    I. Background

    On June 2, 2015, at 80 FR 31332, HUD published an advance notice of final rulemaking (ANPR) entitled “Establishing a More Effective Fair Market Rent (FMR) System; Using Small Area Fair Market Rents (Small Area FMRs) in Housing Choice Voucher Program Instead of the Current 50th Percentile FMRs.” In this ANPR, HUD announced its intention to amend HUD's FMR regulations applicable to the HCV program and sought public comment on the use of certain criteria for setting Small Area FMRs for the HCV program within certain metropolitan areas.

    On June 16, 2016, at 81 FR 39218, HUD published a proposed rule that would require the use of Small Area FMRs in place of the 50th percentile rent to address high levels of voucher concentration. The proposed rule addressed the issues and suggestions raised by public commenters on the ANPR, and in response to public comments proposed new criteria for setting Small Area FMRs for the HCV program.

    The proposed regulation provided, in 24 CFR 888.113(c), to set Small Area FMRs for metropolitan areas where at least 2,500 HCVs are under lease; at least 20 percent of the standard quality rental stock, within the metropolitan area, is in small areas (that is ZIP codes) where the Small Area FMR is more than 110 percent of the metropolitan FMR; and the measure of the percentage of voucher holders living in concentrated low-income areas relative to all renters within these areas over the entire metropolitan area exceeds 155 percent (or 1.55).

    The proposed regulation also provided, in 24 CFR 888.113(c)(2), that “concentrated low-income areas” means those census tracts in the metropolitan FMR area with a poverty rate of 25 percent or more; or any tract in the metropolitan FMR area where more than 50 percent of the households earn incomes at less than 60 percent of the area median income (AMI) and are designated as Qualified Census Tracts in accordance with section 42 of the Internal Revenue Code (26 U.S.C. 42). Lastly, the proposed regulation provided, in 24 CFR 888.113(c)(3), that if a metropolitan area meets the criteria for application of Small Area FMRs to the area, all PHAs administering HCV programs in that area will be required to use Small Area FMRs.

    In addition to setting forth new proposed criteria, HUD specifically requested comment on whether HUD should codify in regulatory text the selection parameters for Small Area FMRs or if they should be incorporated into each annual FMR notice, subject to public comment, to provide HUD, PHAs, and other stakeholders with flexibility to offer changes to the selection parameters. HUD also asked for comments on the criteria that HUD selected for determining which metropolitan areas should be impacted by the shift to a Small Area FMR instead of the current 50th percentile policy.

    The final rule, found elsewhere in the Federal Register, responded to the public comments received on the questions posed by HUD and sets forth new selection criteria for HUD to use in determining which metropolitan areas would be impacted by the shift to a Small Area FMR and provides that the criteria values would be set by notice in the Federal Register. Specifically, HUD codified in the final rule the selection parameters in regulatory text for setting Small Area FMRs but provided that HUD would set the selection values through this Federal Register notice and that subsequent Small Area FMR Area designations will be specified through Federal Register notice with opportunity for public comment as new Small Area FMR designations are made.

    In response to comments, HUD also adds two new selection criteria to those provided in the proposed rule. First, HUD adds the vacancy rate of an area as a criterion to the selection parameters for Small Area FMRs and excludes metropolitan areas with a certain ACS vacancy rate from being designated a Small Area FMR area. Second, HUD adds a threshold for the voucher concentration ratio to better target communities where voucher concentration is most severe. Consequently, in addition to the voucher concentration ratio included in the proposed rule, the final rule also requires the numerator of this measure, the concentration of voucher holders within concentrated low income areas, to meet a minimum standard level.

    II. Selection Values for Selecting Small Area FMRs

    Through this notice, HUD is setting the selection values to determine the first-set of metropolitan FMR areas subject to Small Area FMRs for use in the administration of tenant-based assistance under the HCV program. Metropolitan FMR areas that meet the following requirement will be subject to Small Area FMRs consistent with 24 CFR 888.113(c):

    (i) There are at least 2,500 HCV under lease;

    (ii) At least 20 percent of the standard quality rental stock, within the metropolitan FMR area is in small areas (ZIP codes) where the Small Area FMR is more than 110 percent of the metropolitan FMR;

    (iii) The percentage of voucher families living in concentrated low income areas relative to all renters within the area must be at least 25 percent;

    (iv) The measure of the percentage of voucher holders living in concentrated low income areas relative to all renters within these areas over the entire metropolitan area exceeds 155 percent (or 1.55); and

    (v) The vacancy rate for the metropolitan area is higher than 4 percent. The vacancy rate is calculated using data from the 1-year American Community Survey (ACS) tabulations, the vacancy rate is the number of Vacant For Rent Units divided by the sum of the number of Vacant For Rent Units, the number of Renter Occupied Units, and the number of Rented, not occupied units. The vacancy rate will be calculated from the 3 most current ACS 1 year datasets available and average the 3 values.

    The metropolitan FMR Areas that meet these requirements are as follows:

    Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, GA HUD Metro FMR Area Bergen-Passaic, NJ HUD Metro FMR Area Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill, NC-SC HUD Metro FMR Area Chicago-Joliet-Naperville, IL HUD Metro FMR Area Colorado Springs, CO HUD Metro FMR Area Dallas-Plano-Irving, TX Metro Division Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach-Deerfield Beach, FL Metro Division Fort Worth-Arlington, TX HUD Metro FMR Area Gary, IN HUD Metro FMR Area Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, CT HUD Metro FMR Area Jackson, MS HUD Metro FMR Area Jacksonville, FL HUD Metro FMR Area Monmouth-Ocean, NJ HUD Metro FMR Area North Port-Bradenton-Sarasota, FL MSA Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville, FL MSA Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD MSA Pittsburgh, PA HUD Metro FMR Area Sacramento-Arden-Arcade-Roseville, CA HUD Metro FMR Area San Antonio-New Braunfels, TX HUD Metro FMR Area San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos, CA MSA Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL MSA Urban Honolulu, HI MSA Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD HUD Metro FMR Area West Palm Beach-Boca Raton-Delray Beach, FL Metro Division Dated: November 1, 2016. Katherine M. O'Regan, Assistant Secretary for Policy Development and Research.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27112 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4210-67-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement [Docket ID BSEE-2016-0007; OMB Number 1014-0006; 17XE1700DX EEEE500000 EX1SF0000.DAQ000] Information Collection Activities: Sulfur Operations; Submitted for Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Review; Comment Request ACTION:

    30-Day notice.

    SUMMARY:

    To comply with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) is notifying the public that we have submitted to OMB an information collection request (ICR) to renew approval of the paperwork requirements in the regulations under Subpart P, Sulfur Operations. This notice also provides the public a second opportunity to comment on the paperwork burden of these regulatory requirements.

    DATES:

    You must submit comments by December 16, 2016.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit comments by either fax (202) 395-5806 or email ([email protected]) directly to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, OMB, Attention: Desk Officer for the Department of the Interior (1014-0006). Please provide a copy of your comments to BSEE by any of the means below.

    Electronically: go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for BSEE-2016-0007. Follow the instructions to submit public comments and view all related materials. We will post all comments.

    Email [email protected], fax (703) 787-1546, or mail or hand-carry comments to: Department of the Interior; Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement; Regulations and Standards Branch; Attention: Kelly Odom; 45600 Woodland Road, Sterling, VA 20166. Please reference 1014-0006 in your comment and include your name and return address.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Kelly Odom, Regulations and Standards Branch, (703) 787-1775, to request additional information about this ICR. To see a copy of the entire ICR submitted to OMB, go to http://www.reginfo.gov (select Information Collection Review, Currently Under Review).

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title: 30 CFR 250, Subpart P, Sulfur Operations.

    OMB Control Number: 1014-0006.

    Abstract: The Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Lands Act (OCSLA) at 43 U.S.C. 1334 authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to prescribe rules and regulations necessary for the administration of the leasing provisions of that Act related to mineral resources on the OCS. Such rules and regulations will apply to all operations conducted under a lease, right-of-way, or a right-of-use and easement. Operations on the OCS must preserve, protect, and develop mineral resources in a manner that is consistent with the need to make such resources available to meet the Nation's energy needs as rapidly as possible; to balance orderly energy resource development with protection of human, marine, and coastal environments; to ensure the public a fair and equitable return on the resources of the OCS; and to preserve and maintain free enterprise competition.

    In addition to the general rulemaking authority of the OCSLA at 43 U.S.C. 1334, section 301(a) of the Federal Oil and Gas Royalty Management Act (FOGRMA), 30 U.S.C. 1751(a), grants authority to the Secretary to prescribe such rules and regulations as are reasonably necessary to carry out FOGRMA's provisions. While the majority of FOGRMA is directed to royalty collection and enforcement, some provisions apply to offshore operations. For example, section 108 of FOGRMA, 30 U.S.C. 1718, grants the Secretary broad authority to inspect lease sites for the purpose of determining whether there is compliance with the mineral leasing laws. Section 109(c)(2) and (d)(1), 30 U.S.C. 1719(c)(2) and (d)(1), impose substantial civil penalties for failure to permit lawful inspections and for knowing or willful preparation or submission of false, inaccurate, or misleading reports, records, or other information. Because the Secretary has delegated some of the authority under FOGRMA to BSEE, 30 U.S.C. 1751 is included as additional authority for these requirements.

    Regulations implementing these responsibilities are under 30 CFR part 250. Some responses are mandatory and some are required to obtain or retain a benefit. No questions of a sensitive nature are asked. BSEE will protect proprietary information according to the Freedom of Information Act (5 U.S.C. 552) and DOI's implementing regulations (43 CFR 2); 30 CFR 250.197, Data and information to be made available to the public or for limited inspection; and 30 CFR part 252, OCS Oil and Gas Information Program.

    BSEE uses the information collected under subpart P to:

    • Ascertain that a discovered sulfur deposit can be classified as capable of production in paying quantities.

    • ensure accurate and complete measurement of production to determine the amount of sulfur royalty payments due the United States; and that the sale locations are secure, production has been measured accurately, and appropriate follow-up actions are initiated.

    • ensure the adequacy and safety of firefighting systems; the drilling unit is fit for the intended purpose; and the adequacy of casing for anticipated conditions.

    • review drilling, well-completion, well-workover diagrams and procedures, as well as production operation procedures to ensure the safety of the proposed sulfur drilling, well-completion, well-workover and proposed production operations.

    • monitor environmental data during sulfur operations in offshore areas where such data are not already available to provide a valuable source of information to evaluate the performance of drilling rigs under various weather and ocean conditions. This information is necessary to make reasonable determinations regarding safety of operations and environmental protection.

    Frequency: Submissions are on occasion and generally vary by section.

    Description of Respondents: Potential respondents comprise Federal OCS sulfur lessees.

    Estimated Reporting and Recordkeeping Hour Burden: The estimated annual hour burden for this information collection is a total of 897 hours. The following chart details the individual components and estimated hour burdens. In calculating the burdens, we assumed that respondents perform certain requirements in the normal course of their activities. We consider these to be usual and customary and took that into account in estimating the burden.

    Citation
  • 30 CFR 250
  • subpart P
  • Reporting and recordkeeping requirement Hour
  • burden
  • Average number of annual reponses Annual burden hours
    1605(b)(3); 1617; 1622(b) These sections contain references to information, approvals, requests, payments, etc. which are submitted with an APD, the burdens for which are covered under its own information collection APD burden covered under 1014-0025 0 1618(a), (b); 1619(b); 1622(a), (b), (c) These sections contain references to information, approvals, requests, Payments etc., which are submitted with an APM, the burdens for which are covered under its own information collection APM burden covered under 1014-0026 0 1600; 1617 Submit exploration or development and production plan, under 30 CFR 550, Subpart B Burden covered under (1010-0151) 0 1603(a) Request determination whether sulfur deposit can produce in paying quantities 1 1 request 1 1604(f) Check traveling-block safety device for proper operation weekly and after each drill-line slipping; enter results in log 0.25 1 lessee × 52 wks × 2 rigs = 104 26 1605(c) Report oceanographic, meteorological, and drilling unit performance data upon request 1 1 report 1 1605(d) Submit results of additional surveys and soil borings upon request 1 1 submission 1 1605(e)(5) Request copy of directional survey (by holder of adjoining lease) 1 1 request 1 1605(f) Submit application for installation of fixed drilling platforms or structures Burden covered under (1014-0011). 0 1607 Request establishment, amendment, or cancellation of field rules for drilling, well-completion, or well-workover 8 2 requests 16 1608(a), (c) Submit well casing and cementing plan or modification 5 1 plan 5 1608(b); (c); 1629(b)(3); 1600-1634 General departure and/or alternate compliance requests not specifically covered elsewhere in Subpart P Burden covered under (1014-0022). 0 1609(a) Pressure test casing; record time, conditions of testing, and test results in log 2 1 lease × 60 tests/records = 60 120 1610(d)(7), (8) Request exception to ram-type blowout preventer (BOP) system components rated working pressure 1 1 request 1 1611(b); 1625(b) Request exception to water-rated working pressure to test ram-type and annular BOPs and choke manifold 1 1 request 1 1611(d)(3); 1625(d)(3) Record in driller's report the date, time, and reason for postponing pressure testings 0.17 1 lessee × 6 recordings = 6 1 1611(f); 1625(f) Request exception to recording pressure conditions during BOP tests on pressure charts, certify by representative 1 1 request 1 1611(f), (g); 1625(f), (g) Conduct tests, actuations, inspections, maintenance, and crew drills of BOP systems at least weekly; record results in driller's report; certify by representative; retain records for 2 years following completion of drilling activity 6 1 lessee × 52 weeks = 52 312 1612 Request exception to § 250.462 requirements for well-control drills 1 1 request 1 1613(d) Pressure test diverter sealing element/valves weekly; actuate diverter sealing element/valves/control system every 24 hours; test diverter line for flow every 24 hours; record test times and results in driller's report 2 1 lessee (daily/weekly during drilling) × 2 rigs × 52 weeks = 104 208 1615 Request exception to blind-shear ram or pipe rams and inside BOP to secure wells 1 1 request 1 1616(c) Retain training records for lessee and drilling contractor personnel Burden covered under 1014-0008. 0 1619(a); 1623(c) Retain records for each well and all well operations for 2 years; calculate well-control fluid volume and post near operator's station 12 1 lessee 12 1619(b); 1622(c) Submit form BSEE-0125 (End of Operations Report), and all supporting documentation Burden covered under 1014-0018) 0 1619(c), (d), (e) Submit copies of records, logs, reports, charts, etc., upon request 1 8 submissions 8 1621 Conduct safety meetings prior to well-completion or well-workover operations; record date and time 1 1 lessee × 50 meetings/records = 50 50 1628(b), (d) Maintain information on approved design and installation features for the life of the facility 1 1 lessee 1 1628(b), (d) Submit application for design and installation features of sulfur production facilities and fuel gas safety system; certify new installation conforms to approved design 4 1 application 4 1629(b)(1)(ii) Retain pressure-recording charts used to determine operating pressure ranges for 2 years 12 1 lessee 12 1629(b)(3) Request approval of firefighting systems; post firefighting system diagram 4 1 request 4 1630(a)(6) Notify BSEE of pre-production test and inspection of safety system and commencement of production 0.5 2 notifications 1 1630(b) Maintain records for each safety device installed for 2 years; make available for review 1 1 lessee 1 1631 Conduct safety device training prior to production operations and periodically thereafter; record date and time 1 1 lessee × 52 train/records × 2 rigs = 104 104 1633(b) Submit application for method production measurement 2 1 application 2 1634(b) Report evidence of mishandling of produced sulfur or tampering or falsifying any measurement of production 1 1 report 1 Total Burden 511 897

    Estimated Reporting and Recordkeeping Non-Hour Cost Burden: There are no non-hour cost burdens associated with this collection.

    Public Disclosure Statement: The PRA (44 U.S.C. 3501, et seq.,) provides that an agency may not conduct or sponsor a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number. Until OMB approves a collection of information, you are not obligated to respond.

    Comments: Section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the PRA (44 U.S.C. 3501, et seq.,) requires each agency “. . . to provide notice . . . and otherwise consult with members of the public and affected agencies concerning each proposed collection of information . . .” Agencies must specifically solicit comments to: (a) Evaluate whether the collection is necessary or useful; (b) evaluate the accuracy of the burden of the proposed collection of information; (c) enhance the quality, usefulness, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) minimize the burden on the respondents, including the use of technology.

    To comply with the public consultation process, on June 3, 2016, we published a Federal Register notice (81 FR 35798) announcing that we would submit this ICR to OMB for approval. The notice provided the required 60-day comment period. In addition, § 250.199 provides the OMB Control Number for the information collection requirements imposed by the 30 CFR 250, Subpart P regulations. The regulation also informs the public that they may comment at any time on the collections of information and provides the address to which they should send comments. We did not receive any comments in response to the Federal Register notice or unsolicited comments from respondents covered under these regulations.

    Public Availability of Comments: Before including your address, phone number, email address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment—including your personal identifying information—may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

    BSSE Information Collection Clearance Officer: Nicole Mason (703) 787-1607.

    Robert W. Middleton, Deputy Chief, Office of Offshore Regulatory Programs.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27501 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310-VH-P
    INTERNATIONAL TRADE COMMISSION [Investigation No. 332-345] Recent Trends in U.S. Services Trade, 2017 Annual Report AGENCY:

    United States International Trade Commission.

    ACTION:

    Schedule for 2017 report and opportunity to submit information.

    SUMMARY:

    The Commission has prepared and published annual reports in this series under investigation No. 332-345, Recent Trends in U.S. Services Trade, since 1996. The 2017 report, which the Commission plans to publish in May 2017, will provide aggregate data on cross-border trade in services for the period ending in 2015, and transactions by affiliates based outside the country of their parent firm for the period ending in 2014. The report's analysis will focus on professional services (including accounting and auditing, architecture and engineering, legal services, and business management and consulting).The Commission is inviting interested members of the public to furnish information and views in connection with the 2017 report.

    DATES:

    December 16, 2016: Deadline for filing written submissions.

    May 19, 2017: Anticipated date for publishing the report.

    ADDRESSES:

    All Commission offices are located in the United States International Trade Commission Building, 500 E St. SW., Washington, DC. All written submissions should be addressed to the Secretary, United States International Trade Commission, 500 E St. SW., Washington, DC 20436. The public record for this investigation may be viewed on the Commission's electronic docket information system (EDIS) at https://edis.usitc.gov/.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Project Leader Art Chambers (202-205-2766 or [email protected]) or Services Division Chief Martha Lawless (202-205-3497 or [email protected]) for information specific to this investigation. For information on the legal aspects of these investigations, contact William Gearhart of the Commission's Office of the General Counsel (202-205-3091 or [email protected]). The media should contact Margaret O'Laughlin, Office of External Relations (202-205-1819 or [email protected]). Hearing-impaired individuals may obtain information on this matter by contacting the Commission's TDD terminal at 202-205-1810. General information concerning the Commission may also be obtained by accessing its Internet server (http://www.usitc.gov). Persons with mobility impairments who will need special assistance in gaining access to the Commission should contact the Office of the Secretary at 202-205-2000.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background: The 2017 annual services trade report will provide aggregate data on cross-border trade and affiliate transactions in services, and more specific data and information on trade in professional services (accounting and auditing, architecture and engineering, legal services, and business and management consulting). Under Commission investigation No. 332-345, the Commission publishes two annual reports, one on services trade (Recent Trends in U.S. Services Trade), and a second on merchandise trade (Shifts in U.S. Merchandise Trade). The Commission's 2016 annual report in the series of reports on Recent Trends in U.S. Services Trade is now available online at http://www.usitc.gov.

    The initial notice of institution of this investigation was published in the Federal Register on September 8, 1993 (58 FR 47287) and provided for what is now the report on merchandise trade. The Commission expanded the scope of the investigation to cover services trade in a separate report, which it announced in a notice published in the Federal Register on December 28, 1994 (59 FR 66974). The separate report on services trade has been published annually since 1996, except in 2005. As in past years, the report will summarize trade in services in the aggregate and provide analyses of trends and developments in selected services industries during the latest period for which data are published by the U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis.

    Written Submissions: Interested parties are invited to file written submissions and other information concerning the matters to be addressed by the Commission in its 2017 report. For the 2017 report, the Commission is particularly interested in receiving information relating to trade in professional services (accounting and auditing, architecture and engineering, legal, and business and management consulting). Submissions should be addressed to the Secretary. To be assured of consideration by the Commission, written submissions related to the Commission's report should be submitted at the earliest practical date and should be received not later than 5:15 p.m., December 16, 2016. All written submissions must conform with the provisions of section 201.8 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (19 CFR 201.8). Section 201.8 and the Commission's Handbook on Filing Procedures require that interested parties file documents electronically on or before the filing deadline and submit eight (8) true paper copies by 12:00 p.m. eastern time on the next business day. In the event that confidential treatment of a document is requested, interested parties must file, at the same time as the eight paper copies, at least four (4) additional true paper copies in which the confidential information must be deleted (see the paragraph below for further information regarding confidential business information). Persons with questions regarding electronic filing should contact the Office of the Secretary, Docket Services Division (202-205-1802).

    Confidential business information. Any submissions that contain confidential business information (CBI) must also conform with the requirements in section 201.6 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (19 CFR 201.6). Section 201.6 of the rules requires that the cover of the document and the individual pages be clearly marked as to whether they are confidential or non-confidential, and that the confidential business information be clearly identified by means of brackets. All written submissions, except for confidential business information, will be made available for inspection by interested parties.

    The Commission intends to prepare only a public report in this investigation. The report that the Commission makes available to the public will not contain confidential business information. However, all information, including confidential business information, submitted in this investigation may be disclosed to and used: (i) By the Commission, its employees and Offices, and contract personnel (a) for developing or maintaining the records of this or a related proceeding, or (b) in internal investigations, audits, reviews, and evaluations relating to the programs, personnel, and operations of the Commission including under 5 U.S.C. Appendix 3; or (ii) by U.S. government employees and contract personnel solely for cybersecurity purposes. The Commission will not otherwise disclose any confidential business information in a manner that would reveal the operations of the firm supplying the information.

    Summaries of Written Submissions: The Commission intends to publish summaries of the positions of interested persons in this report. If you wish to have a summary of your position included in an appendix of the report, please include a summary with your written submission. The summary may not exceed 500 words, should be in MSWord format or a format that can be easily converted to MSWord, and should not include any confidential business information. The summary will be published as provided if it meets these requirements and is germane to the subject matter of the investigation. In the report the Commission will identify the name of the organization furnishing the summary, and will include a link to the Commission's Electronic Document Information System (EDIS) where the full written submission can be found.

    By order of the Commission.

    Issued: November 9, 2016. Lisa R. Barton, Secretary to the Commission.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27446 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7020-02-P
    INTERNATIONAL TRADE COMMISSION [Investigation Nos. 701-TA-548 and 731-TA-1298 (Final)] Welded Stainless Steel Pressure Pipe From India Determinations

    On the basis of the record 1 developed in the subject investigations, the United States International Trade Commission (“Commission”) determines, pursuant to the Tariff Act of 1930 (“the Act”), that an industry in the United States is materially injured by reason of imports of welded stainless steel pressure pipe from India, provided for in subheadings 7306.40.50 and 7306.40.10 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States, that have been found by the Department of Commerce (“Commerce”) to be sold in the United States at less than fair value (“LTFV”), and that have been found by Commerce to be subsidized by the government of India.2

    1 The record is defined in sec. 207.2(f) of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (19 CFR 207.2(f)).

    2 All six Commissioners voted in the affirmative.

    Background

    The Commission, pursuant to sections 705(b) and 735(b) of the Act (19 U.S.C. 1671d(b) and 19 U.S.C. 1673d(b)), instituted these investigations effective September 30, 2015, following receipt of a petition filed with the Commission and Commerce by Bristol Metals, LLC, Bristol, Tennessee; Felker Brothers Corp., Marshfield, Wisconsin; Marcegaglia USA, Munhall, Pennsylvania; and Outokumpu Stainless Pipe, Inc., Wildwood, Florida. The final phase of the investigations was scheduled by the Commission following notification of preliminary determinations by Commerce that imports of welded stainless steel pressure pipe from India were subsidized within the meaning of section 703(b) of the Act (19 U.S.C. 1671b(b)) and dumped within the meaning of 733(b) of the Act (19 U.S.C. 1673b(b)). Notice of the scheduling of the final phase of the Commission's investigations and of a public hearing to be held in connection therewith was given by posting copies of the notice in the Office of the Secretary, U.S. International Trade Commission, Washington, DC, and by publishing the notice in the Federal Register on May 27, 2016 (81 FR 33706). The hearing was held in Washington, DC, on September 22, 2016, and all persons who requested the opportunity were permitted to appear in person or by counsel.

    The Commission made these determinations pursuant to sections 705(b) and 735(b) of the Act (19 U.S.C. 1671d(b) and 19 U.S.C. 1673d(b)). It completed and filed its determinations in these investigations on November 9, 2016. The views of the Commission are contained in USITC Publication 4644 (November 2016), entitled Welded Stainless Steel Pressure Pipe from India: Investigation Nos. 701-TA-548 and 731-TA-1298 (Final).

    By order of the Commission.

    Issued: November 9, 2016. Lisa R. Barton, Secretary to the Commission.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27476 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7020-02-P
    DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives [Docket No. 2016R-02] Commerce in Explosives; 2016 Annual List of Explosive Materials AGENCY:

    Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF); Department of Justice.

    ACTION:

    Notice of list of explosive materials.

    SUMMARY:

    Pursuant to 18 U.S.C. 841(d) and 27 CFR 555.23, the Department must publish and revise at least annually in the Federal Register a list of explosives determined to be within the coverage of 18 U.S.C. 841 et seq. The list covers not only explosives, but also blasting agents and detonators, all of which are defined as explosive materials in 18 U.S.C. 841(c). In the 2016 listing, the Department amends the term “Xanthamonas hydrophilic colloid explosive mixture” to read “Xanthomonas hydrophilic colloid explosive mixture” and removes the term “Special fireworks” from the list of explosive materials. This notice publishes the 2016 Annual List of Explosive Materials.

    DATES:

    The list becomes effective November 16, 2016.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    William E. Frye Jr., Chief, Explosives Industry Programs Branch; Firearms and Explosives Industry Division; Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives; United States Department of Justice; 99 New York Avenue NE., Washington, DC 20226; 202 648-7120.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The list includes all mixtures containing any of the materials on the list. Materials constituting blasting agents are marked by an asterisk. While the list is comprehensive, it is not all-inclusive. The fact that an explosive material is not on the list does not mean that it is not within the coverage of the law if it otherwise meets the statutory definitions in 18 U.S.C. 841. Explosive materials are listed alphabetically by their common names followed, where applicable, by chemical names and synonyms in brackets.

    The Department amends the term, “Xanthamonas hydrophilic colloid explosive mixture” to “Xanthomonas hydrophilic colloid explosive mixture” to more accurately reflect reference to this material in the list of explosive materials. The term “Xanthamonas” was included as part of a 1967 patent of a gelled explosive containing a Xanthomonas hydrophilic colloid and was erroneously used as synonymous with the broader class of Xanthomonas hydrophilic colloid explosive mixtures. Further, the Department removes the term “Special fireworks” that was previously used to describe those fireworks currently classified as display fireworks. The definition of “Special fireworks” was removed and the definition of “Display fireworks” was added in its place to Part 555 (formerly Part 55) in a final rule (63 FR, 45001, August 24, 1998). However, “Special fireworks” was not removed from the list of explosive materials at that time. These revisions are being made for clarity and consistency within all explosives laws and regulations. This list supersedes the List of Explosive Materials dated October 23, 2015 (Docket No. 2015R-23, 80 FR 64446).

    Notice of the 2016 Annual List of Explosive Materials

    Pursuant to 18 U.S.C. 841(d) and 27 CFR 555.23, I hereby designate the following as explosive materials covered under 18 U.S.C. 841(c):

    A

    Acetylides of heavy metals.

    Aluminum containing polymeric propellant.

    Aluminum ophorite explosive.

    Amatex.

    Amatol.

    Ammonal.

    Ammonium nitrate explosive mixtures (cap sensitive).

    *Ammonium nitrate explosive mixtures (non-cap sensitive).

    Ammonium perchlorate having particle size less than 15 microns.

    Ammonium perchlorate explosive mixtures (excluding ammonium perchlorate composite

    propellant (APCP)).

    Ammonium picrate [picrate of ammonia, Explosive D].

    Ammonium salt lattice with isomorphously substituted inorganic salts.

    *ANFO [ammonium nitrate-fuel oil].

    Aromatic nitro-compound explosive mixtures.

    Azide explosives.

    B

    Baranol.

    Baratol.

    BEAF [1, 2-bis (2, 2-difluoro-2-nitroacetoxyethane)].

    Black powder.

    Black powder based explosive mixtures.

    Black powder substitutes.

    *Blasting agents, nitro-carbo-nitrates, including non-cap sensitive slurry and water gel

    explosives.

    Blasting caps.

    Blasting gelatin.

    Blasting powder.

    BTNEC [bis (trinitroethyl) carbonate].

    BTNEN [bis (trinitroethyl) nitramine].

    BTTN [1,2,4 butanetriol trinitrate].

    Bulk salutes.

    Butyl tetryl.

    C

    Calcium nitrate explosive mixture.

    Cellulose hexanitrate explosive mixture.

    Chlorate explosive mixtures.

    Composition A and variations.

    Composition B and variations.

    Composition C and variations.

    Copper acetylide.

    Cyanuric triazide.

    Cyclonite [RDX].

    Cyclotetramethylenetetranitramine [HMX].

    Cyclotol.

    Cyclotrimethylenetrinitramine [RDX].

    D

    DATB [diaminotrinitrobenzene].

    DDNP [diazodinitrophenol].

    DEGDN [diethyleneglycol dinitrate].

    Detonating cord.

    Detonators.

    Dimethylol dimethyl methane dinitrate composition.

    Dinitroethyleneurea.

    Dinitroglycerine [glycerol dinitrate].

    Dinitrophenol.

    Dinitrophenolates.

    Dinitrophenyl hydrazine.

    Dinitroresorcinol.

    Dinitrotoluene-sodium nitrate explosive mixtures.

    DIPAM [dipicramide; diaminohexanitrobiphenyl].

    Dipicryl sulfone.

    Dipicrylamine.

    Display fireworks.

    DNPA [2,2-dinitropropyl acrylate].

    DNPD [dinitropentano nitrile].

    Dynamite.

    E

    EDDN [ethylene diamine dinitrate].

    EDNA [ethylenedinitramine].

    Ednatol.

    EDNP [ethyl 4,4-dinitropentanoate].

    EGDN [ethylene glycol dinitrate].

    Erythritol tetranitrate explosives.

    Esters of nitro-substituted alcohols.

    Ethyl-tetryl.

    Explosive conitrates.

    Explosive gelatins.

    Explosive liquids.

    Explosive mixtures containing oxygen-releasing inorganic salts and hydrocarbons.

    Explosive mixtures containing oxygen-releasing inorganic salts and nitro bodies.

    Explosive mixtures containing oxygen-releasing inorganic salts and water insoluble fuels.

    Explosive mixtures containing oxygen-releasing inorganic salts and water soluble fuels.

    Explosive mixtures containing sensitized nitromethane.

    Explosive mixtures containing tetranitromethane (nitroform).

    Explosive nitro compounds of aromatic hydrocarbons.

    Explosive organic nitrate mixtures.

    Explosive powders.

    F

    Flash powder.

    Fulminate of mercury.

    Fulminate of silver.

    Fulminating gold.

    Fulminating mercury.

    Fulminating platinum.

    Fulminating silver.

    G

    Gelatinized nitrocellulose.

    Gem-dinitro aliphatic explosive mixtures.

    Guanyl nitrosamino guanyl tetrazene.

    Guanyl nitrosamino guanylidene hydrazine.

    Guncotton.

    H

    Heavy metal azides.

    Hexanite.

    Hexanitrodiphenylamine.

    Hexanitrostilbene.

    Hexogen [RDX].

    Hexogene or octogene and a nitrated N-methylaniline.

    Hexolites.

    HMTD [hexamethylenetriperoxidediamine].

    HMX [cyclo-1,3,5,7-tetramethylene 2,4,6,8-tetranitramine; Octogen].

    Hydrazinium nitrate/hydrazine/aluminum explosive system.

    Hydrazoic acid.

    I

    Igniter cord.

    Igniters.

    Initiating tube systems.

    K

    KDNBF [potassium dinitrobenzo-furoxane].

    L

    Lead azide.

    Lead mannite.

    Lead mononitroresorcinate.

    Lead picrate.

    Lead salts, explosive.

    Lead styphnate [styphnate of lead, lead trinitroresorcinate].

    Liquid nitrated polyol and trimethylolethane.

    Liquid oxygen explosives.

    M

    Magnesium ophorite explosives.

    Mannitol hexanitrate.

    MDNP [methyl 4,4-dinitropentanoate].

    MEAN [monoethanolamine nitrate].

    Mercuric fulminate.

    Mercury oxalate.

    Mercury tartrate.

    Metriol trinitrate.

    Minol-2 [40% TNT, 40% ammonium nitrate, 20% aluminum].

    MMAN [monomethylamine nitrate]; methylamine nitrate.

    Mononitrotoluene-nitroglycerin mixture.

    Monopropellants.

    N

    NIBTN [nitroisobutametriol trinitrate].

    Nitrate explosive mixtures.

    Nitrate sensitized with gelled nitroparaffin.

    Nitrated carbohydrate explosive.

    Nitrated glucoside explosive.

    Nitrated polyhydric alcohol explosives.

    Nitric acid and a nitro aromatic compound explosive.

    Nitric acid and carboxylic fuel explosive.

    Nitric acid explosive mixtures.

    Nitro aromatic explosive mixtures.

    Nitro compounds of furane explosive mixtures.

    Nitrocellulose explosive.

    Nitroderivative of urea explosive mixture.

    Nitrogelatin explosive.

    Nitrogen trichloride.

    Nitrogen tri-iodide.

    Nitroglycerine [NG, RNG, nitro, glyceryl trinitrate, trinitroglycerine].

    Nitroglycide.

    Nitroglycol [ethylene glycol dinitrate, EGDN].

    Nitroguanidine explosives.

    Nitronium perchlorate propellant mixtures.

    Nitroparaffins Explosive Grade and ammonium nitrate mixtures.

    Nitrostarch.

    Nitro-substituted carboxylic acids.

    Nitrourea.

    O

    Octogen [HMX].

    Octol [75 percent HMX, 25 percent TNT].

    Organic amine nitrates.

    Organic nitramines.

    P

    PBX [plastic bonded explosives].

    Pellet powder.

    Penthrinite composition.

    Pentolite.

    Perchlorate explosive mixtures.

    Peroxide based explosive mixtures.

    PETN [nitropentaerythrite, pentaerythrite tetranitrate, pentaerythritol tetranitrate].

    Picramic acid and its salts.

    Picramide.

    Picrate explosives.

    Picrate of potassium explosive mixtures.

    Picratol.

    Picric acid (manufactured as an explosive).

    Picryl chloride.

    Picryl fluoride.

    PLX [95% nitromethane, 5% ethylenediamine].

    Polynitro aliphatic compounds.

    Polyolpolynitrate-nitrocellulose explosive gels.

    Potassium chlorate and lead sulfocyanate explosive.

    Potassium nitrate explosive mixtures.

    Potassium nitroaminotetrazole.

    Pyrotechnic compositions.

    Pyrotechnic fuses.

    PYX [2,6-bis(picrylamino)] 3,5-dinitropyridine.

    R

    RDX [cyclonite, hexogen, T4, cyclo-1,3,5,-trimethylene-2,4,6,-trinitramine; hexahydro-1,3,5-

    trinitro-S-triazine].

    S

    Safety fuse.

    Salts of organic amino sulfonic acid explosive mixture.

    Salutes (bulk).

    Silver acetylide.

    Silver azide.

    Silver fulminate.

    Silver oxalate explosive mixtures.

    Silver styphnate.

    Silver tartrate explosive mixtures.

    Silver tetrazene.

    Slurried explosive mixtures of water, inorganic oxidizing salt, gelling agent, fuel, and sensitizer (cap sensitive).

    Smokeless powder.

    Sodatol.

    Sodium amatol.

    Sodium azide explosive mixture.

    Sodium dinitro-ortho-cresolate.

    Sodium nitrate explosive mixtures.

    Sodium nitrate-potassium nitrate explosive mixture.

    Sodium picramate.

    Squibs.

    Styphnic acid explosives.

    T

    Tacot [tetranitro-2,3,5,6-dibenzo-1,3a,4,6a tetrazapentalene].

    TATB [triaminotrinitrobenzene].

    TATP [triacetonetriperoxide].

    TEGDN [triethylene glycol dinitrate].

    Tetranitrocarbazole.

    Tetrazene [tetracene, tetrazine, 1(5-tetrazolyl)-4-guanyl tetrazene hydrate].

    Tetrazole explosives.

    Tetryl [2,4,6 tetranitro-N-methylaniline].

    Tetrytol.

    Thickened inorganic oxidizer salt slurried explosive mixture.

    TMETN [trimethylolethane trinitrate].

    TNEF [trinitroethyl formal].

    TNEOC [trinitroethylorthocarbonate].

    TNEOF [trinitroethylorthoformate].

    TNT [trinitrotoluene, trotyl, trilite, triton].

    Torpex.

    Tridite.

    Trimethylol ethyl methane trinitrate composition.

    Trimethylolthane trinitrate-nitrocellulose.

    Trimonite.

    Trinitroanisole.

    Trinitrobenzene.

    Trinitrobenzoic acid.

    Trinitrocresol.

    Trinitro-meta-cresol.

    Trinitronaphthalene.

    Trinitrophenetol.

    Trinitrophloroglucinol.

    Trinitroresorcinol.

    Tritonal.

    U

    Urea nitrate.

    W

    Water-bearing explosives having salts of oxidizing acids and nitrogen bases,

    sulfates, or sulfamates (cap sensitive).

    Water-in-oil emulsion explosive compositions.

    X

    Xanthomonas hydrophilic colloid explosive mixture.

    Dated: October 20, 2016. Thomas E. Brandon, Deputy Director.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27459 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4410-FY-P
    DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE Notice of Lodging of Proposed Consent Decree Under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act

    On November 4, 2016, the Department of Justice lodged a proposed consent decree with the United States District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi in the lawsuit entitled United States and Mississippi Commission on Environmental Quality v. Estate of William Troy Burford and Sonford Products Corporation, Civil Action No. 3:16-cv-00869-CWR-FKB.

    The consent decree would resolve claims under CERCLA § 107(a), 42 U.S.C. 9607(a), for recovery of response costs in connection with the Sonford Products Superfund Site in Flowood, Rankin County, Mississippi (“Site”). The consent decree also contains a covenant under CERCLA § 106, 42 U.S.C. 9606, for damages related to injury to, destruction of, or loss of natural resources at the Site. The Mississippi Commission on Environmental Quality is a co-plaintiff; the Consent Decree would resolve its claims under state law.

    The six-acre Site is located in Flowood, east of Jackson, Mississippi. Defendant Sonford Products Corporation operated a chemical processing facility at the Site from 1970 to 1985. It formulated pentachlorophenol (“PCP”) for wood preserving and saw mill operations. On April 18, 1985, approximately 2,000 gallons of PCP spilled from the Sonford Products facility into wetlands on the Site. Since that time, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Mississippi Department of Natural Resources have been responding to the release or threatened release of PCP and other hazardous substances at the Site. The cost of the response is expected to exceed $27 million.

    Defendant Sonford Products Corporation has been dissolved. Defendant Estate of William Troy Burford has no assets other than proceeds from insurance policies issued to Sonford Products. The proposed consent decree would allow for the recovery of insurance proceeds from three insurers. The total value of the settlement is $257,500. Of that amount, the Estate will receive $2,500 plus the reasonable fees and expenses associated with administration of the Estate. The United States will receive 95 percent of the remainder and the State of Mississippi will receive 5 percent.

    The publication of this notice opens a period for public comment on the proposed consent decree. Comments should be addressed to the Assistant Attorney General, Environment and Natural Resources Division, and should refer to United States and Mississippi Commission on Environmental Quality v. Estate of William Troy Burford and Sonford Products Corporation, D.J. Ref. No. 90-11-3-10806. All comments must be submitted no later than thirty (30) days after the publication date of this notice. Comments may be submitted either by email or by mail:

    To submit comments: Send them to: By email [email protected] By mail Assistant Attorney General, U.S. DOJ—ENRD, P.O. Box 7611, Washington, DC 20044-7611.

    During the public comment period, the proposed consent decree may be examined and downloaded at this Justice Department Web site: https://www.justice.gov/enrd/consent-decrees. We will provide a paper copy of the proposed consent decree upon written request and payment of reproduction costs. Please mail your request and payment to: Consent Decree Library, U.S. DOJ—ENRD, P.O. Box 7611, Washington, DC 20044-7611.

    Please enclose a check or money order for $7.00 (25 cents per page reproduction cost) payable to the United States Treasury.

    Henry Friedman, Assistant Section Chief, Environmental Enforcement Section, Environment and Natural Resources Division.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27537 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4410-15-P
    LEGAL SERVICES CORPORATION Sunshine Act Meetings DATE AND TIME:

    The Legal Services Corporation's Board of Directors will meet telephonically on November 22, 2016. The meeting will commence at 2:00 p.m., EST, and will continue until the conclusion of the Committee's agenda. Immediately following the Board of Directors telephonic meeting, the Operations and Regulations Committee will hold a telephonic meeting.

    LOCATION:

    John N. Erlenborn Conference Room, Legal Services Corporation Headquarters, 3333 K Street NW., Washington, DC 20007.

    PUBLIC OBSERVATION:

    Members of the public who are unable to attend in person but wish to listen to the public proceedings may do so by following the telephone call-in directions provided below.

    CALL-IN DIRECTIONS FOR OPEN SESSIONS:

    • Call toll-free number: 1-866-451-4981;

    • When prompted, enter the following numeric pass code: 5907707348

    • When connected to the call, please immediately “MUTE” your telephone.

    Members of the public are asked to keep their telephones muted to eliminate background noises. To avoid disrupting the meeting, please refrain from placing the call on hold if doing so will trigger recorded music or other sound. From time to time, the Chair may solicit comments from the public.

    STATUS OF MEETINGS:

    Open.

    MATTERS TO BE CONSIDERED:

    Board of Directors 1. Approval of agenda 2. Consider and act on the Board of Directors' transmittal to accompany the Inspector General's Semiannual Report to Congress for the period of April 1, 2016 through October 31, 2016 3. Public comment 4. Consider and act on other business 5. Consider and act on adjournment of meeting

    Operations and Regulations Committee—briefing materials will be posted at http://www.lsc.gov/about-lsc/board/board-meetings.

    1. Approval of agenda 2. Briefing and discussion on Final Rule of Proposed Rulemaking for 45 CFR part 1627—Subgrants with consolidation of transfer provisions from 45 CFR part 1610.7 3. Public comment 4. Consider and act on other business 5. Consider and act on adjournment of meeting CONTACT PERSON FOR INFORMATION:

    Katherine Ward, Executive Assistant to the Vice President & General Counsel, at (202) 295-1500. Questions may be sent by electronic mail to [email protected]

    ACCESSIBILITY:

    LSC complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act. Upon request, meeting notices and materials will be made available in alternative formats to accommodate individuals with disabilities. Individuals needing other accommodations due to disability in order to attend the meeting in person or telephonically should contact Katherine Ward, at (202) 295-1500 or [email protected], at least 2 business days in advance of the meeting. If a request is made without advance notice, LSC will make every effort to accommodate the request but cannot guarantee that all requests can be fulfilled.

    Dated: November 14, 2016. Katherine Ward, Executive Assistant to the Vice President for Legal Affairs and General Counsel.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27659 Filed 11-14-16; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 7050-01-P
    NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Research Performance Progress Report AGENCY:

    National Science Foundation.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    Effective with the publication of this Notice in the Federal Register, agencies will be able to utilize the updated standardized Research Performance Progress Report (RPPR) format for both interim and final progress reporting.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    To view the updated Standardized Research Performance Progress Report Format to be used for both Interim and Final Performance Progress Reporting, see: http://www.nsf.gov/bfa/dias/policy/rppr/index.jsp. For information on the RPPR, contact Jean Feldman, Head, Policy Office, Division of Institution & Award Support, National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, VA, 22230, email: [email protected]; telephone (703) 292-8243; FAX: (703) 292-9171.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Research Performance Progress Report (RPPR) directly benefits award recipients by making it easier for them to administer Federal grant and cooperative agreement programs through standardization of the types of information required in performance reports—thereby reducing their administrative effort and costs. The RPPR also will make it easier to compare the outputs, outcomes, etc. of research and research-related programs across the government.

    The RPPR resulted from an initiative of the Research Business Models (RBM), an Interagency Working Group of the Social, Behavioral & Economic Research Subcommittee of the Committee on Science (CoS), a committee of the National Science and Technology Council (NSTC). One of the RBM Subcommittee's priority areas is to create greater consistency in the administration of Federal research awards. Given the increasing complexity of interdisciplinary and interagency research, it is important for Federal agencies to manage awards in a similar fashion. The RPPR is to be used by agencies that support research and research-related activities for use in submission of progress reports. It is intended to replace other performance reporting formats currently in use by agencies. The RPPR does not change the performance reporting requirements specified in 2 CFR part 200.

    On July 23, 2015 the National Science Foundation (NSF) submitted a request for public comment on an Updated Standardized Research Performance Progress Report Format to be used for Both Interim and Final Performance Progress Reporting in the Federal Register [80 FR 43802, July 23, 2015]. All comments were carefully considered in developing the final version of the RPPR. A table listing the comments and responses is posted on the NSF Web site at: http://www.nsf.gov/bfa/dias/policy/rppr/index.jsp. It should be noted that substantive changes were not made to the RPPR as a result of the comment process.

    On behalf of the RBM, NSF has agreed to continue to serve as the sponsor of the updated version of this Federal-wide performance progress reporting format. The final version of the updated Standardized Research Performance Progress Report Format to be used for both Interim and Final Performance Progress Reporting incorporates the public comments mentioned above, and may be viewed at: http://www.nsf.gov/bfa/dias/policy/rppr/index.jsp. Each Federal research agency that supports research and research-related activities must post their policy or an implementation plan on the NSF and RBM Web sites within nine months after issuance of the Federal Register Notice. Each implementation plan will address whether the agency plans to implement the RPPR in paper or electronic format, and include an anticipated implementation date.

    Dated: November 10, 2016. Suzanne H. Plimpton, Reports Clearance Officer, National Science Foundation.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27505 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7555-01-P
    NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION Advisory Committee for Computer and Information Science and Engineering; Notice of Meeting

    In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act (Pub. L. 92-463, as amended), the National Science Foundation (NSF) announces the following meeting:

    Name: Advisory Committee for Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) (1115).

    Date/Time: December 7, 2016; 12:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., December 8, 2016; 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

    Place: National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 1235, Arlington, Virginia 22230.

    Type of Meeting: Open.

    Contact Person: Brenda Williams, National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 1105, Arlington, Virginia 22230; 703-292-8900.

    Purpose of Meeting: To advise NSF on the impact of its policies, programs and activities on the CISE community. To provide advice to the Assistant Director for CISE on issues related to long-range planning, and to form ad hoc subcommittees and working groups to carry out needed studies and tasks.

    Agenda:

    Welcome and CISE updates Program updates for CISE divisions Presentation and discussion of the CISE AC data science report NSF Big Ideas discussion Closing remarks and wrap-up Dated: November 10, 2016. Suzanne Plimpton, Acting Committee Management Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27513 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7555-01-P
    NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION [NRC-2016-0232] Response of Nuclear Power Plant Instrumentation Cables When Exposed to Fire Conditions—Test Plan AGENCY:

    Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

    ACTION:

    Draft test plan; request for comment.

    SUMMARY:

    The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is requesting public comment on the draft test plan entitled, “Response of Nuclear Power Plant Instrumentation Cables When Exposed to Fire Conditions—Test Plan,” in order to receive feedback from the widest range of interested parties and to ensure that all information relevant to developing this document is available to the NRC staff. The purpose of this draft test plan is to better understand the fire-induced failure modes of instrumentation cables and evaluate the potential effect those failure modes could have on plant instrumentation circuits (i.e., circuit, component, and/or system response).

    DATES:

    Submit comments by December 16, 2016. Comments received after this date will be considered if it is practical to do so, but the Commission is able to ensure consideration only for comments received on or before this date.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments by any of the following methods (unless this document describes a different method for submitting comments on a specific subject):

    • Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2016-0232. Address questions about NRC dockets to Carol Gallagher; telephone: 301-415-3463; email: [email protected] For technical questions, contact the individual listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this document.

    • Mail comments to: Cindy Bladey, Office of Administration, Mail Stop: OWFN-12-H08, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001.

    For additional direction on obtaining information and submitting comments, see “Obtaining Information and Submitting Comments” in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Gabriel Taylor, Office of Nuclear Regulatory Research, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001; telephone: 301-415-0781, email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    I. Obtaining Information and Submitting Comments A. Obtaining Information

    Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2016-0232 when contacting the NRC about the availability of information for this action. You may obtain publicly-available information related to this action by any of the following methods:

    Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2016-0232.

    NRC's Agencywide Documents Access and Management System (ADAMS): You may obtain publicly-available documents online in the ADAMS Public Documents collection at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. To begin the search, select “ADAMS Public Documents” and then select “Begin Web-based ADAMS Search.” For problems with ADAMS, please contact the NRC's Public Document Room (PDR) reference staff at 1-800-397-4209, 301-415-4737, or by email to [email protected] The draft test plan, “Response of Nuclear Power Plant Instrumentation Cables When Exposed to Fire Conditions—Test Plan,” is available in ADAMS under Accession No. ML16309A608.

    NRC's PDR: You may examine and purchase copies of public documents at the NRC's PDR, Room O1-F21, One White Flint North, 11555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852.

    B. Submitting Comments

    Please include Docket ID NRC-2016-0232 in the subject line of your comment submission.

    The NRC cautions you not to include identifying or contact information that you do not want to be publicly disclosed in your comment submission. The NRC posts all comment submissions at http://www.regulations.gov as well as entering the comment submissions into ADAMS. The NRC does not routinely edit comment submissions to remove identifying or contact information.

    If you are requesting or aggregating comments from other persons for submission to the NRC, then you should inform those persons not to include identifying or contact information that they do not want to be publicly disclosed in their comment submission. Your request should state that the NRC does not routinely edit comment submissions to remove such information before making the comment submissions available to the public or entering the comment into ADAMS.

    II. Discussion

    In 1990, the NRC sponsored a series of tests at Sandia National Laboratories (SNL) to investigate the effects of thermal aging on fire damageability, documented in NUREG/CR-5546, “An Investigation of the Effects of Thermal Aging on the Fire Damageability of Electric Cables” (ADAMS Accession No. ML041270223). An instrumentation cable was tested to determine the failure time and temperature for both aged and unaged cables. During the testing, levels of leakage current, on the order of 15 mA, were observed prior to the onset of catastrophic failure. In 2001, additional testing was performed by the Nuclear Energy Institute and the Electric Power Research Institute. The NRC was invited to observe and participate by sponsoring SNL to evaluate various cables and instrumentation techniques. Six tests included instrumentation cables and those results are documented in NUREG/CR-6776, “Cable Insulation Resistance Measurements Made During Cable Fire Tests” (ADAMS Accession No. ML022600316). Those results indicated pronounced differences observed between the failure of the thermoplastic and thermoset insulated cables. In previous years the NRC has published cable functionality test reports which focused on power and control cables when exposed to fire conditions including: NUREG/CR-7102, “Kerite Analysis in Thermal Environment of FIRE (KATE-Fire): Test Results” (ADAMS Accession No. ML11333A033), NUREG/CR-7010, Volume 1, “Cable Heat Release, Ignition, and Spread in Tray Installations During Fire (CHRISTIFIRE), Phase 1: Horizontal Trays” (ADAMS Accession No. ML12213A056), NUREG/CR-7010, Volume 2, “Cable Heat Release, Ignition, and Spread in Tray Installations During Fire (CHRISTIFIRE), Phase 2: Vertical Shafts and Corridors” (ADAMS Accession No. ML13346A045), NUREG-2128, “Electrical Cable Test Results and Analysis During Fire Exposure (ELECTRA-FIRE), A Consolidation of Three Major Fire-Induced Circuit and Cable Failure Experiments Performed Between 2001 and 2011” (ADAMS Accession No. ML13253A087), NUREG/CR-7150, Volume 1, “Joint Assessment of Cable Damage and Quantification of Effects from Fire (JACQUE-FIRE)” (ADAMS Accession No. ML12313A105), NUREG/CR-7150, Volume 2, “Joint Assessment of Cable Damage and Quantification of Effects from Fire (JACQUE-FIRE)” (ADAMS Accession No. ML14141A129).

    The purpose of this draft test plan is to better understand the fire-induced failure modes of instrumentation cables and evaluate the potential effect those failure modes could have on plant instrumentation circuits (i.e., circuit, component, and/or system response). Specifically, this research is intended to better quantify the signal leakage characteristics that may occur before catastrophic failure in instrumentation circuits.

    The NRC is requesting public comment in order to receive feedback from the widest range of interested parties and to ensure that all information relevant to developing this document is available to the NRC staff. This document is not intended for interim use. The NRC will review public comments received on the document, incorporate suggested changes as necessary, and make the final test plan available.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 4th day of November, 2016.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

    Mark Henry Salley, Chief, Fire and External Hazard Analysis Branch, Division of Risk Analysis, Office of Nuclear Regulatory Research.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27721 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7590-01-P
    POSTAL REGULATORY COMMISSION [Docket No. CP2017-34] New Postal Product AGENCY:

    Postal Regulatory Commission.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Commission is noticing a recent Postal Service filing for the Commission's consideration concerning a negotiated service agreement. This notice informs the public of the filing, invites public comment, and takes other administrative steps.

    DATES:

    Comments are due: November 17, 2016

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit comments electronically via the Commission's Filing Online system at http://www.prc.gov. Those who cannot submit comments electronically should contact the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section by telephone for advice on filing alternatives.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    David A. Trissell, General Counsel, at 202-789-6820.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Table of Contents I. Introduction II. Docketed Proceeding(s) I. Introduction

    The Commission gives notice that the Postal Service filed request(s) for the Commission to consider matters related to negotiated service agreement(s). The request(s) may propose the addition or removal of a negotiated service agreement from the market dominant or the competitive product list, or the modification of an existing product currently appearing on the market dominant or the competitive product list.

    Section II identifies the docket number(s) associated with each Postal Service request, the title of each Postal Service request, the request's acceptance date, and the authority cited by the Postal Service for each request. For each request, the Commission appoints an officer of the Commission to represent the interests of the general public in the proceeding, pursuant to 39 U.S.C. 505 (Public Representative). Section II also establishes comment deadline(s) pertaining to each request.

    The public portions of the Postal Service's request(s) can be accessed via the Commission's Web site (http://www.prc.gov). Non-public portions of the Postal Service's request(s), if any, can be accessed through compliance with the requirements of 39 CFR 3007.40.

    The Commission invites comments on whether the Postal Service's request(s) in the captioned docket(s) are consistent with the policies of title 39. For request(s) that the Postal Service states concern market dominant product(s), applicable statutory and regulatory requirements include 39 U.S.C. 3622, 39 U.S.C. 3642, 39 CFR part 3010, and 39 CFR part 3020, subpart B. For request(s) that the Postal Service states concern competitive product(s), applicable statutory and regulatory requirements include 39 U.S.C. 3632, 39 U.S.C. 3633, 39 U.S.C. 3642, 39 CFR part 3015, and 39 CFR part 3020, subpart B. Comment deadline(s) for each request appear in section II.

    II. Docketed Proceeding(s)

    1. Docket No(s).: CP2017-34; Filing Title: Notice of United States Postal Service of Filing a Functionally Equivalent Global Expedited Package Services 3 Negotiated Service Agreement and Application for Non-Public Treatment of Materials Filed Under Seal; Filing Acceptance Date: November 8, 2016; Filing Authority: 39 CFR 3015.5; Public Representative: Lawrence Fenster; Comments Due: November 17, 2016.

    This notice will be published in the Federal Register. Stacy L. Ruble, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27443 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7710-FW-P
    SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION [Release No. 34-79276; File No SR-CBOE-2016-075] Self-Regulatory Organizations; Chicago Board Options Exchange, Incorporated; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change To Amend the Fees Schedule November 9, 2016.

    Pursuant to Section 19(b)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the “Act”),1 and Rule 19b-4 thereunder,2 notice is hereby given that on November 1, 2016, Chicago Board Options Exchange, Incorporated (the “Exchange” or “CBOE”) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “Commission”) the proposed rule change as described in Items I, II, and III below, which Items have been prepared by the Exchange. The Commission is publishing this notice to solicit comments on the proposed rule change from interested persons.

    1 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(1).

    2 17 CFR 240.19b-4.

    I. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Terms of Substance of the Proposed Rule Change

    The text of the proposed rule change is available on the Exchange's Web site (http://www.cboe.com/AboutCBOE/CBOELegalRegulatoryHome.aspx), at the Exchange's Office of the Secretary, and at the Commission's Public Reference Room.

    II. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change

    In its filing with the Commission, the Exchange included statements concerning the purpose of and basis for the proposed rule change and discussed any comments it received on the proposed rule change. The text of these statements may be examined at the places specified in Item IV below. The Exchange has prepared summaries, set forth in sections A, B, and C below, of the most significant aspects of such statements.

    A. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change 1. Purpose

    The Exchange proposes to amend its Fees Schedule. Particularly, the Exchange proposes to amend its fees for Firm (origin codes “F” and “L”) facilitation orders. The Fees Schedule currently defines “Facilitation orders” as any order in which a Clearing Trading Permit Holder (“F” origin code) or Non-Trading Permit Holder Affiliate (“L” origin code) is contra to any other origin code, provided the same executing broker and clearing firm are on both sides of the transaction (for open outcry) or both sides of a paired order (for orders executed electronically).3 The Fees Schedule also provides that for facilitation orders (other than Underlying Symbol List A (34) excluding binary options) executed in open outcry, or electronically via the Automated Improvement Mechanism (“AIM”) or as a Qualified Contingent Cross order (“QCC”) or CFLEX transaction, CBOE will assess no Clearing Trading Permit Holder Proprietary transaction fees. The Exchange proposes to amend the Fees Schedule to provide that for facilitation orders executed via AIM (i.e., AIM facilitation contra orders), Firms would be assessed $0.05 per contract and for facilitation orders executed as a QCC order, Firms would be assessed $0.17 per contract. Additionally, the Exchange would amend the Clearing Trading Permit Holder Fee Cap rate table to reflect that AIM facilitation contra orders would now count towards the Clearing Trading Permit Holder Fee Cap (“Fee Cap”). The Exchange notes that AIM and QCC orders are already subject to rebates and therefore, it does not wish to further provide free facilitation on these executions.4 The Exchange also notes that other Exchanges do not waive fees for facilitation orders that are executed through an electronic pairing mechanism or as a QCC order.5

    3See CBOE Fees Schedule, Footnote 11.

    4See e.g., CBOE Fees Schedule, the Volume Incentive Program, which provides credits for customer AIM orders and QCC Rate Table, which provides $0.10 per contract credit for all transaction QCC orders.

    5See e.g., NASDAQ PHLX Pricing Schedule, Section II, Multiply Listed Options Fees and Section IV Other Transaction Fees, PIXL Pricing. See also, NYSE Amex Options (“Amex”) Fees Schedule, Credits and Key Terms and Definitions and Section I, Options Transaction Fees.

    2. Statutory Basis

    The Exchange believes the proposed rule change is consistent with the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the “Act”) and the rules and regulations thereunder applicable to the Exchange and, in particular, the requirements of Section 6(b) of the Act.6 Specifically, the Exchange believes the proposed rule change is consistent with the Section 6(b)(5) 7 requirements that the rules of an exchange be designed to prevent fraudulent and manipulative acts and practices, to promote just and equitable principles of trade, to foster cooperation and coordination with persons engaged in regulating, clearing, settling, processing information with respect to, and facilitating transactions in securities, to remove impediments to and perfect the mechanism of a free and open market and a national market system, and, in general, to protect investors and the public interest. Additionally, the Exchange believes the proposed rule change is consistent with Section 6(b)(4) of the Act,8 which requires that Exchange rules provide for the equitable allocation of reasonable dues, fees, and other charges among its Trading Permit Holders and other persons using its facilities.

    6 15 U.S.C. 78f(b).

    7 15 U.S.C. 78f(b)(5).

    8 15 U.S.C. 78f(b)(4).

    The Exchange believes that assessing $0.05 per contract for Firm facilitation orders executed via AIM (i.e., AIM facilitation contra orders) is reasonable because it is the same amount assessed to Firms for AIM Solicitation contra orders. The Exchange believes it is equitable and not unfairly discriminatory to no longer waive transaction fees for AIM facilitation contra orders because AIM orders are already eligible for a rebate under the Volume Incentive Program (“VIP”). The Exchange also notes that transaction fees for similar facilitation transactions executed via an electronic pairing system at other exchanges are not waived.9 The Exchange believes amending the Fee Cap table to reflect that AIM facilitation contra orders would count towards the Fee Cap is reasonable, equitable and not unfairly discriminatory because the Exchange will now be charging for these transactions (whereas before they were listed as “$0.00) and because AIM Solicitation contra orders are also applied to the Fee Cap.

    9See supra Note 5.

    The Exchange believes that assessing $0.17 per contract for Firm facilitation orders executed as a QCC order is reasonable because it is the same amount all non-Customer orders are assessed for QCC order executions. The Exchange believes it is equitable and not unfairly discriminatory to no longer waive transaction fees for QCC facilitation contra orders because QCC orders already receive a rebate of $0.10 per contract. The Exchange also notes that transaction fees for similar QCC facilitation orders executed at other exchanges are not waived.10

    10Id.

    B. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement on Burden on Competition

    The Exchange does not believe that the proposed rule changes will impose any burdens on competition that are not necessary or appropriate in furtherance of the purposes of the Act. The Exchange does not believe that the proposed rule change will impose any burden on intramarket competition that is not necessary or appropriate in furtherance of the purposes of the Act because while the Exchange is eliminating its Firm Facilitation fee waiver for AIM and QCC orders, these orders are subject to the benefit of various rebates and will be assessed the same amounts charged to Firms for non-facilitation AIM contra orders and QCC orders, respectively. The Exchange does not believe that the proposed change will cause any unnecessary burden on intermarket competition because the proposed change only affects trading on CBOE. To the extent that the proposed changes make CBOE a more attractive marketplace for market participants at other exchanges, such market participants are welcome to become CBOE market participants.

    C. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement on Comments on the Proposed Rule Change Received From Members, Participants, or Others

    The Exchange neither solicited nor received comments on the proposed rule change.

    III. Date of Effectiveness of the Proposed Rule Change and Timing for Commission Action

    The foregoing rule change has become effective pursuant to Section 19(b)(3)(A) of the Act 11 and paragraph (f) of Rule 19b-4 12 thereunder. At any time within 60 days of the filing of the proposed rule change, the Commission summarily may temporarily suspend such rule change if it appears to the Commission that such action is necessary or appropriate in the public interest, for the protection of investors, or otherwise in furtherance of the purposes of the Act. If the Commission takes such action, the Commission will institute proceedings to determine whether the proposed rule change should be approved or disapproved.

    11 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(3)(A).

    12 17 CFR 240.19b-4(f).

    IV. Solicitation of Comments

    Interested persons are invited to submit written data, views, and arguments concerning the foregoing, including whether the proposed rule change is consistent with the Act. Comments may be submitted by any of the following methods:

    Electronic Comments

    • Use the Commission's Internet comment form (http://www.sec.gov/rules/sro.shtml); or

    • Send an email to [email protected] Please include File Number SR-CBOE-2016-075 on the subject line.

    Paper Comments

    • Send paper comments in triplicate to Brent J. Fields, Secretary, Securities and Exchange Commission, 100 F Street NE., Washington, DC 20549.

    All submissions should refer to File Number SR-CBOE-2016-075. This file number should be included on the subject line if email is used. To help the Commission process and review your comments more efficiently, please use only one method. The Commission will post all comments on the Commission's Internet Web site (http://www.sec.gov/rules/sro.shtml). Copies of the submission, all subsequent amendments, all written statements with respect to the proposed rule change that are filed with the Commission, and all written communications relating to the proposed rule change between the Commission and any person, other than those that may be withheld from the public in accordance with the provisions of 5 U.S.C. 552, will be available for Web site viewing and printing in the Commission's Public Reference Room, 100 F Street NE., Washington, DC 20549, on official business days between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Copies of such filing also will be available for inspection and copying at the principal office of the Exchange. All comments received will be posted without change; the Commission does not edit personal identifying information from submissions. You should submit only information that you wish to make available publicly. All submissions should refer to File Number SR-CBOE-2016-075 and should be submitted on or before December 7, 2016.

    13 17 CFR 200.30-3(a)(12).

    For the Commission, by the Division of Trading and Markets, pursuant to delegated authority.13

    Brent J. Fields, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2016-27471 Filed 11-15-16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 8011-01-P
    SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION [Release No. 34-79272; File No. SR-MIAX-2016-39] Self-Regulatory Organizations; Miami International Securities Exchange LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change To Amend Exchange Rule 519A, Risk Protection Monitor November 9, 2016.

    Pursuant to the provisions of Section 19(b)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (“Act”) 1 and Rule 19b-4 thereunder,2 notice is hereby given that on October 31, 2016, Miami International Securities Exchange LLC (“MIAX” or “Exchange”) filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“Commission”) a proposed rule change as described in Items I and II below, which Items have been prepared by the Exchange. The Commission is publishing this notice to solicit comments on the proposed rule change from interested persons.

    1 15 U.S.C. 78s(b)(1).

    2 17 CFR 240.19b-4.

    I. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Terms of Substance of the Proposed Rule Change

    The Exchange is filing a proposal to amend Exchange Rule 519A, Risk Protection Monitor.

    The text of the proposed rule change is available on the Exchange's Web site at http://www.miaxoptions.com/filter/wotitle/rule_filing, at MIAX's principal office, and at the Commission's Public Reference Room.

    II. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change

    In its filing with the Commission, the Exchange included statements concerning the purpose of and basis for the proposed rule change and discussed any comments it received on the proposed rule change. The text of these statements may be examined at the places specified in Item IV below. The Exchange has prepared summaries, set forth in sections A, B, and C below, of the most significant aspects of such statements.

    A. Self-Regulatory Organization's Statement of the Purpose of, and Statutory Basis for, the Proposed Rule Change 1. Purpose

    The Exchange proposes to amend Exchange Rule 519A, Risk Protection Monitor, to mandate the use of the Risk Protection Monitor by Members, and to state clearly in the rule that Members may establish multiple RPM Settings, as defined below.

    Current Functionality

    Currently, using the Risk Protection Monitor, the Exchange's System 3 maintains a counting program (“counting program”) for each participating Member that counts the number of orders entered and the number of contracts traded via an order entered by a Member on the Exchange within a specified time period that has been established by the Member (the “specified time period”). The maximum duration of the specified time period is established by the Exchange and announced via a Regulatory Circular. The current maximum duration of the specified time period is a trading session.

    3 The term “System” means the automated trading system used by the Exchange for the trading of securities. See Exchange Rule 100.

    Under the current rule, Members may establish an Allowable Order Rate 4 and/or an Allowable Contract Execution Rate.5 When a Member's order is entered or when an execution of a Member's order occurs, the System will look back over the specified time period to determine whether the order entered or the execution that occurred triggers the Risk Protection Monitor.6 Members may establish whether the Risk Protection Monitor, when triggered, will (i) prevent the System from receiving any new orders in all series in all classes from the Member; or (ii) prevent the System from receiving any new orders in all series in all classes from the Member and cancel all existing Day orders in all series in all classes from the Member; or (iii) send a notification that the Risk Protection Monitor has been triggered without any further preventative or cancellation action by the System.7

    4 The Allowable Order Rate is the number of orders entered during the specific time period that has been established by the Member.

    5 The Allowable Contract Execution Rate is the number of contracts executed during the specific time period that has been established