Federal Register Vol. 82, No.108,

Federal Register Volume 82, Issue 108 (June 7, 2017)

Page Range26335-26570
FR Document

82_FR_108
Current View
Page and SubjectPDF
82 FR 26521 - Sunshine Act Meeting NoticePDF
82 FR 26456 - Applications for New Awards; Technical Assistance and Dissemination To Improve Services and Results for Children With Disabilities-Technical Assistance Center on Positive Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Outcomes for Young Children With, and at Risk for, Developmental Delays or DisabilitiesPDF
82 FR 26340 - Extension of Import Restrictions Imposed on Archaeological and Ethnological Materials From PeruPDF
82 FR 26504 - Request for Applicants for Appointment to the Commercial Customs Operations Advisory Committee (COAC)PDF
82 FR 26503 - Notice of Issuance of Final Determination Concerning Certain Surgical and Isolation GownsPDF
82 FR 26434 - Foreign-Trade Zone 186-Waterville, Maine Application for Production Authority, Flemish Master Weavers, Subzone 186A, (Machine-Made Woven Area Rugs), Sanford, MainePDF
82 FR 26435 - Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) 39-Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas, Notification of Proposed Production Activity, Valeo North America, Inc., d/b/a Valeo Compressor North America, (Motor Vehicle Air-Conditioner Compressors), Dallas, TexasPDF
82 FR 26433 - Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) 43-Battle Creek, Michigan, Notification of Proposed Production Activity, Pfizer, Inc., (Pharmaceutical Products), Kalamazoo, MichiganPDF
82 FR 26435 - Foreign-Trade Zone 19-Omaha, Nebraska, Application for Reorganization Under Alternative Site FrameworkPDF
82 FR 26434 - Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) 80-San Antonio, Texas, Notification of Proposed Production Activity, DPT Laboratories, Ltd., (Pharmaceutical Products), San Antonio, TexasPDF
82 FR 26433 - Request for Comments on the Broadcasting Board of Governors' Implementation of a Comprehensive Plan for Reorganizing the Executive BranchPDF
82 FR 26566 - Limitation on Claims Against Proposed Public Transportation ProjectsPDF
82 FR 26454 - Notice of Scope RulingsPDF
82 FR 26444 - Initiation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Administrative ReviewsPDF
82 FR 26441 - Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Order, Finding, or Suspended Investigation; Opportunity To Request Administrative ReviewPDF
82 FR 26452 - Certain Small Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line and Pressure Pipe From Romania: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2015-2016PDF
82 FR 26435 - Freshwater Crawfish Tail Meat From the People's Republic of China: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review, Rescission of Review in Part, and Preliminary Intent To Rescind New Shipper Review; 2015-2016PDF
82 FR 26438 - Aluminum Extrusions From the People's Republic of China: Preliminary Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review and Rescission of Review, in Part; 2015PDF
82 FR 26497 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Customer/Partner Service SurveysPDF
82 FR 26489 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Third Party Disclosure and Recordkeeping Requirements for Reportable FoodPDF
82 FR 26494 - Developing Rabies Monoclonal Antibody Products as a Component of Rabies Post-Exposure Prophylaxis; Public Workshop; Request for CommentsPDF
82 FR 26488 - Oncologic Drugs Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting; Establishment of a Public Docket; Request for CommentsPDF
82 FR 26492 - Oncologic Drugs Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting; Establishment of a Public Docket; Request for CommentsPDF
82 FR 26495 - Oncologic Drugs Advisory Committee; Notice of Meeting; Establishment of a Public Docket; Request for CommentsPDF
82 FR 26348 - Humanitarian Use Devices; 21st Century Cures Act; Technical AmendmentPDF
82 FR 26419 - Plan for Periodic Review of RegulationsPDF
82 FR 26487 - Disease, Disability, and Injury Prevention and Control Special Emphasis Panel (SEP): Secondary ReviewPDF
82 FR 26467 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Impact Evaluation of Academic Language InterventionPDF
82 FR 26563 - Notice of Issuance of a Presidential Permit to NuStar Logistics, L.P.PDF
82 FR 26565 - Notice of Public MeetingPDF
82 FR 26505 - Notice of Temporary Closures of Public Land in Washoe County, NevadaPDF
82 FR 26483 - Federal Advisory Committee Act; Communications Security, Reliability, and Interoperability Council; Notice of Public MeetingPDF
82 FR 26485 - Change in Bank Control Notices; Acquisitions of Shares of a Bank or Bank Holding CompanyPDF
82 FR 26482 - Information Collection Being Submitted for Review and Approval to the Office of Management and BudgetPDF
82 FR 26425 - Request for Extension and Revision of a Currently Approved Information Collection Under the Packers and Stockyards ActPDF
82 FR 26360 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Waterfront ConstructionPDF
82 FR 26376 - Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Reef Fish Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico; Red Snapper Management Measures; Compliance With Court OrderPDF
82 FR 26520 - South Carolina Electric & Gas Company; South Carolina Public Service Authority, Virgil C. Summer Nuclear Station, Units 2 and 3; Passive Core Cooling System (PXS) Condensate ReturnPDF
82 FR 26465 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Protection and Advocacy of Individual Rights (PAIR)PDF
82 FR 26468 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; The College Assistance Migrant Program (CAMP) Annual Performance Report (APR)PDF
82 FR 26465 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Annual Client Assistance Program (CAP) ReportPDF
82 FR 26519 - Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards (ACRS); Meeting of the ACRS Subcommittee on Northwest Medical Isotopes; Notice of MeetingPDF
82 FR 26516 - Patricia A. Newton, M.D.; OrderPDF
82 FR 26516 - Emmanuel O. Nwaokocha, M.D.; Decision and OrderPDF
82 FR 26515 - Steven W. Easley, M.D.; Decision and OrderPDF
82 FR 26349 - Schedules of Controlled Substances: Placement of Acetyl Fentanyl Into Schedule IPDF
82 FR 26339 - Delay of Discharge Requirements for U.S. Coast Guard Activities in Greater Farallones and Cordell Bank National Marine SanctuariesPDF
82 FR 26522 - New Postal ProductsPDF
82 FR 26466 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS 2019) Main Study Recruitment and Field TestPDF
82 FR 26469 - Notice of Petition for Waiver From Acuity Brands From the Department of Energy Illuminated Exit Signs Test ProcedurePDF
82 FR 26567 - Agency Information Collection; Activity Under OMB Review; Report of Traffic and Capacity Statistics-The T-100 SystemPDF
82 FR 26514 - Notice Pursuant to the National Cooperative Research and Production Act of 1993-Cooperative Research Group on Hedge IVPDF
82 FR 26514 - Notice Pursuant to the National Cooperative Research and Production Act of 1993-Cooperative Research Group on Particle Sensor Performance and DurabilityPDF
82 FR 26514 - Notice Pursuant to the National Cooperative Research and Production Act of 1993-OpenDaylight Project, Inc.PDF
82 FR 26513 - Notice Pursuant to the National Cooperative Research and Production Act of 1993-The Open Group, L.L.C.PDF
82 FR 26518 - Notice of Lodging of Proposed Consent Decree Under the Oil Pollution ActPDF
82 FR 26570 - Proposed Collections; Comment RequestsPDF
82 FR 26519 - Notice of Information CollectionPDF
82 FR 26467 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment Request; Health Education Assistance Loan (HEAL) Program: Lender's Application for Insurance Claim Form and Request for Collection Assistance FormPDF
82 FR 26484 - Notice of Termination, 10393 CreekSide Bank, Woodstock, GeorgiaPDF
82 FR 26484 - Notice of Termination; 10290 ISN Bank, Cherry Hill, New JerseyPDF
82 FR 26477 - Combined Notice of Filings #1PDF
82 FR 26481 - Peregrine Oil & Gas II, LLC v. Texas Eastern Transmission, LP; Notice of ComplaintPDF
82 FR 26473 - Merchant Hydro Developers, LLC; Notice of Preliminary Permit Application Accepted for Filing and Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Competing ApplicationsPDF
82 FR 26480 - Merchant Hydro Developers, LLC; Notice of Preliminary Permit Application Accepted for Filing and Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and Competing ApplicationsPDF
82 FR 26474 - Ray F. Ward; Notice of Application for Surrender of License, Soliciting Comments, Motions To Intervene, and ProtestsPDF
82 FR 26476 - Moomaws Dam Hydroelectric Corporation, Columbia Mills Hydroelectric Limited Partnership; Notice of Transfer of ExemptionPDF
82 FR 26479 - Aspinook Hydro, LLC; Notice of Intent To File License Application, Filing of Pre-Application Document, Approving Use of the Traditional Licensing ProcessPDF
82 FR 26475 - Pacific Gas and Electric Company; Notice of Intent to File License Application, Filing of Pre-Application Document (Pad), Commencement of Pre-Filing Process, Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement, and Scoping; Request for Comments on the Pad and Scoping Document, and Identification of Issues and Associated Study RequestsPDF
82 FR 26476 - Commission Information Collection Activities (FERC-521); Comment RequestPDF
82 FR 26473 - Green Power Solutions of Georgia, LLC; Supplemental Notice That Initial Market-Based Rate Filing Includes Request for Blanket Section 204 AuthorizationPDF
82 FR 26478 - Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company, LLC; Notice of ApplicationPDF
82 FR 26480 - National Fuel Gas Supply Corporation; Notice of Availability of the Environmental Assessment for the Proposed Line QP, Line Q, and Queen Storage ProjectPDF
82 FR 26479 - Combined Notice of Filings #2PDF
82 FR 26512 - Fine Denier Polyester Staple Fiber From China, India, Korea, Taiwan, and Vietnam; Institution of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Investigations and Scheduling of Preliminary Phase InvestigationsPDF
82 FR 26552 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; Investors Exchange LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change To Remove the Ten (10) Price Level Limitation on Aggregated Depth of Book Quotations Disseminated on the IEX Data Platform, and To Add Rule 11.330(a)(5) To Offer Historical DataPDF
82 FR 26562 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; New York Stock Exchange LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change To Extend the Pilot Period for the Exchange's Retail Liquidity Program Until December 31, 2017PDF
82 FR 26546 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change To Amend FINRA Rule 7620A To Eliminate the No/Was Corrective Transaction ChargePDF
82 FR 26559 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; Bats EDGX Exchange, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change To Add a New Optional Order Instruction Known as Non-Displayed SwapPDF
82 FR 26534 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NYSE Arca, Inc.; Order Approving a Proposed Rule Change, as Modified by Amendment No. 2 Thereto, To List and Trade Shares of the Euro Gold Trust, Pound Gold Trust, and the Yen Gold Trust Under NYSE Arca Equities Rule 8.201PDF
82 FR 26532 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NYSE Arca, Inc.; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change To Amend the NYSE Arca Options Fee SchedulePDF
82 FR 26526 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; Miami International Securities Exchange LLC; Notice of Filing of a Proposed Rule Change To Adopt Exchange Rule 1713 Consolidated Audit Trail-Fee Dispute ResolutionPDF
82 FR 26539 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; Bats BYX Exchange, Inc.; Notice of Filing of a Proposed Rule Change To Adopt Rule 4.17, Consolidated Audit Trail-Fee Dispute ResolutionPDF
82 FR 26549 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; Bats EDGA Exchange, Inc.; Notice of Filing of a Proposed Rule Change To Adopt Rule 4.17, Consolidated Audit Trail-Fee Dispute ResolutionPDF
82 FR 26542 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; Bats BZX Exchange, Inc.; Notice of Filing of a Proposed Rule Change To Adopt Rule 4.17, Consolidated Audit Trail-Fee Dispute ResolutionPDF
82 FR 26529 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; Bats EDGX Exchange, Inc.; Notice of Filing of a Proposed Rule Change To Adopt Rule 4.17, Consolidated Audit Trail-Fee Dispute ResolutionPDF
82 FR 26523 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; Chicago Board Options Exchange, Incorporated; Notice of Filing of a Proposed Rule Change To Adopt Rule 6.97, Consolidated Audit Trail (CAT) Compliance Rule-Fee Dispute ResolutionPDF
82 FR 26536 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; BOX Options Exchange LLC; Notice of Filing of Proposed Rule Change To Adopt Rule 16100 (Consolidated Audit Trail-Fee Dispute Resolution) To Establish the Procedures for Resolving Potential Disputes Related to CAT Fees Charged to Industry MembersPDF
82 FR 26569 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Information Collection Renewal; Comment Request; Basel II Interagency Supervisory Guidance for the Supervisory Review Process (Pillar 2)PDF
82 FR 26426 - Inviting Applications for Socially-Disadvantaged Groups GrantsPDF
82 FR 26508 - National Register of Historic Places; Notification of Pending Nominations and Related ActionsPDF
82 FR 26509 - National Register of Historic Places; Notification of Pending Nominations and Related ActionsPDF
82 FR 26335 - Guaranteed Loanmaking and Servicing Regulations; CorrectionPDF
82 FR 26506 - National Register of Historic Places; Notification of Pending Nominations and Related ActionsPDF
82 FR 26507 - National Register of Historic Places; Notification of Pending Nominations and Related ActionsPDF
82 FR 26485 - The Sherwin-Williams Company and The Valspar Corporation; Analysis To Aid Public CommentPDF
82 FR 26360 - Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards; Minimum Sound Requirements for Hybrid and Electric VehiclesPDF
82 FR 26423 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection; Comments Request-Assessing the Child Nutrition State Administrative Expense Allocation FormulaPDF
82 FR 26565 - Diplomatic Security Request for Higher Maximum Uniform AllotmentPDF
82 FR 26554 - Partners Group (USA) Inc., et al.PDF
82 FR 26359 - System Safety ProgramPDF
82 FR 26456 - Closed Teleconference MeetingPDF
82 FR 26501 - National Library of Medicine; Notice of MeetingPDF
82 FR 26500 - National Library of Medicine; Notice of Closed MeetingPDF
82 FR 26501 - National Library of Medicine Notice of MeetingPDF
82 FR 26502 - National Library of Medicine; Notice of MeetingsPDF
82 FR 26500 - National Library of Medicine; Cancellation of MeetingPDF
82 FR 26501 - National Library of Medicine Amended; Notice of MeetingPDF
82 FR 26484 - Formations of, Acquisitions by, and Mergers of Bank Holding CompaniesPDF
82 FR 26484 - Change in Bank Control Notices; Acquisitions of Shares of a Bank or Bank Holding CompanyPDF
82 FR 26498 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission to OMB for Review and Approval; Public Comment Request; Information Collection Request Title: Client-Level Data Reporting System, OMB No. 0915-0323-RevisionPDF
82 FR 26499 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission to OMB for Review and Approval; Public Comment Request; Information Collection Request Title: Reconciliation Tool for the Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education Program, OMB No. 0915-0342-ExtensionPDF
82 FR 26502 - National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases; Notice of Closed MeetingsPDF
82 FR 26521 - New Postal ProductsPDF
82 FR 26455 - Marine Mammals; File No. 20523PDF
82 FR 26455 - Marine Mammals; File No. 21114PDF
82 FR 26354 - Approval of Tennessee's Request To Relax the Federal Reid Vapor Pressure Gasoline Volatility Standard for Davidson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties; and Minor Technical Corrections for Federal Reid Vapor Pressure Gasoline Volatility Standards in Other AreasPDF
82 FR 26351 - Air Plan Approval; Nevada, Lake Tahoe; Second 10-Year Carbon Monoxide Limited Maintenance PlanPDF
82 FR 26408 - Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace; Medford, WI and Waupaca, WIPDF
82 FR 26336 - Amendment of VOR Federal Airways; Eastern United StatesPDF
82 FR 26565 - Notice of Determinations; Culturally Significant Objects Imported for Exhibition Determinations: “Great British Drawings From the Ashmolean Museum” ExhibitionPDF
82 FR 26336 - Amendment of Class E Airspace; Moses Lake, WA; Olympia, WAPDF
82 FR 26411 - Update to FEMA's Regulations on Rulemaking ProceduresPDF
82 FR 26338 - Amendment of Class D and Class E Airspace; Aspen, CO; and Pueblo, COPDF
82 FR 26338 - Amendment of Class D and Class E Airspace for the Following Idaho Towns; Lewiston, ID; Pocatello, ID; and Twin Falls, IDPDF
82 FR 26482 - Proposed CERCLA Cost Recovery Settlement for the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority Palo Seco Superfund Site, Toa Baja, Puerto RicoPDF
82 FR 26406 - Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace, Alexander City, ALPDF
82 FR 26409 - Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace, Hot Springs, VAPDF
82 FR 26391 - Supervisory Review Committee; Procedures for Appealing Material Supervisory DeterminationsPDF
82 FR 26378 - Appeals ProceduresPDF
82 FR 26403 - Airworthiness Directives; Bombardier, Inc. AirplanesPDF

Issue

82 108 Wednesday, June 7, 2017 Contents Agriculture Agriculture Department See

Food and Nutrition Service

See

Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration

See

Rural Business-Cooperative Service

See

Rural Utilities Service

Antitrust Division Antitrust Division NOTICES Changes under National Cooperative Research and Production Act: Open Group, L.L.C., 26513-26514 2017-11785 OpenDaylight Project, Inc., 26514 2017-11786 Southwest Research Institute, 26514 2017-11787 2017-11788 Broadcasting Broadcasting Board of Governors NOTICES Request for Comments on Comprehensive Plan for Reorganizing Executive Branch, 26433 2017-11832 Centers Disease Centers for Disease Control and Prevention NOTICES Meetings: Disease, Disability, and Injury Prevention and Control Special Emphasis Panel; Cancellation, 26487 2017-11814 Commerce Commerce Department See

Foreign-Trade Zones Board

See

International Trade Administration

See

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Comptroller Comptroller of the Currency NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals Basel II Interagency Supervisory Guidance for Supervisory Review Process (Pillar 2), 26569-26570 2017-11740 Drug Drug Enforcement Administration RULES Schedules of Controlled Substances: Placement of Acetyl Fentanyl into Schedule I, 26349-26351 2017-11795 NOTICES Decisions and Orders: Emmanuel O. Nwaokocha, M.D., 26516-26518 2017-11797 Patricia A. Newton, M.D., 26516 2017-11798 Steven W. Easley, M.D., 26515-26516 2017-11796 Education Department Education Department NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Annual Client Assistance Program Report, 26465-26466 2017-11800 College Assistance Migrant Program Annual Performance Report, 26468-26469 2017-11801 Health Education Assistance Loan Program—Lender's Application for Insurance Claim Form and Request for Collection Assistance Form, 26467 2017-11772 Impact Evaluation of Academic Language Intervention, 26467-26468 2017-11813 Protection and Advocacy of Individual Rights, 26465 2017-11802 Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study Main Study Recruitment and Field Test, 26466-26467 2017-11792 Applications for New Awards: Technical Assistance and Dissemination To Improve Services and Results for Children With Disabilities, etc., 26456-26465 2017-11842 Meetings: National Assessment Governing Board, 26456 2017-11726 Energy Department Energy Department See

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Office

See

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

Energy Efficiency Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Office NOTICES Petitions for Waivers: Acuity Brands, 26469-26473 2017-11790 Environmental Protection Environmental Protection Agency RULES Air Quality State Implementation Plans; Approvals and Promulgations: Nevada, Lake Tahoe; Second 10-Year Carbon Monoxide Limited Maintenance Plan, 26351-26354 2017-11699 Federal Reid Vapor Pressure Gasoline Volatility Standard for Davidson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties, Tennessee; Minor Technical Corrections for Federal Reid Vapor Pressure Gasoline Volatility Standards in Other Areas, 26354-26359 2017-11700 NOTICES Proposed CERCLA Cost Recovery Settlements: Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority Palo Seco Superfund Site, Toa Baja, PR, 26482 2017-11461 Federal Aviation Federal Aviation Administration RULES Amendment of Class D and Class E Airspace: Aspen, CO; and Pueblo, CO, 26338-26339 2017-11475 Idaho towns; Lewiston, ID; Pocatello, ID; and Twin Falls, ID, 26338 2017-11474 Amendment of Class E Airspace: Moses Lake, WA; Olympia, WA, 26336 2017-11582 VOR Federal Airways; Amendments: Eastern United States, 26336-26338 2017-11676 PROPOSED RULES Airworthiness Directives: Bombardier, Inc. Airplanes, 26403-26406 2017-11001 Class E Airspace; Amendments: Medford and Waupaca, WI, 26408-26409 2017-11678 Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace, Alexander City, AL, 26406-26407 2017-11395 Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace, Hot Springs, VA, 26409-26411 2017-11394 Federal Communications Federal Communications Commission NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 26482-26483 2017-11807 Meetings: Communications Security, Reliability, and Interoperability Council, 26483-26484 2017-11809 Federal Deposit Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation NOTICES Receiverships; Terminations: 10290, ISN Bank, Cherry Hill, NJ, 26484 2017-11770 10393, CreekSide Bank, Woodstock, GA, 26484 2017-11771 Federal Emergency Federal Emergency Management Agency PROPOSED RULES Regulations on Rulemaking Procedures, 26411-26419 2017-11559 Federal Energy Federal Energy Regulatory Commission NOTICES Applications: Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company, LLC, 26478-26479 2017-11758 Combined Filings, 26477-26479 2017-11756 2017-11768 Complaints: Peregrine Oil & Gas II, LLC v. Texas Eastern Transmission, LP, 26481-26482 2017-11767 Environmental Assessments; Availability, etc.: National Fuel Gas Supply Corp.; Line QP, Line Q, and Queen Storage Project, 26480-26481 2017-11757 Exemption Transfers: Moomaws Dam Hydroelectric Corp.; Columbia Mills Hydroelectric Limited Partnership, 26476 2017-11763 Hydroelectric Applications: Ray F. Ward, 26474-26475 2017-11764 Initial Market-Based Rate Filings Including Requests for Blanket Section 204 Authorizations: Green Power Solutions of Georgia, LLC, 26473-26474 2017-11759 License Applications: Aspinook Hydro, LLC, 26479-26480 2017-11762 Pacific Gas and Electric Co., 26475-26476 2017-11761 Permit Applications: Merchant Hydro Developers, LLC, 26473, 26480 2017-11765 2017-11766 Federal Railroad Federal Railroad Administration RULES System Safety Program, 26359-26360 2017-11727 Federal Reserve Federal Reserve System NOTICES Changes in Bank Control: Acquisitions of Shares of Bank or Bank Holding Company, 26484-26485 2017-11717 2017-11808 Formations of, Acquisitions by, and Mergers of Bank Holding Companies, 26484 2017-11718 Federal Trade Federal Trade Commission NOTICES Proposed Consent Agreements: Sherwin-Williams Co. and Valspar Corp., 26485-26487 2017-11733 Federal Transit Federal Transit Administration NOTICES Limitations on Claims Against Proposed Public Transportation Projects, 26566-26567 2017-11830 Food and Drug Food and Drug Administration RULES Humanitarian Use Devices; 21st Century Cures Act: Technical Amendment, 26348-26349 2017-11816 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Customer/Partner Service Surveys, 26497-26498 2017-11822 Third Party Disclosure and Recordkeeping Requirements for Reportable Food, 26489-26492 2017-11821 Meetings: Developing Rabies Monoclonal Antibody Products as Component of Rabies Post-Exposure Prophylaxis; Public Workshop, 26494-26495 2017-11820 Oncologic Drugs Advisory Committee; Establishment of Public Docket, 26488-26489, 26492-26497 2017-11817 2017-11818 2017-11819 Food and Nutrition Food and Nutrition Service NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Assessing Child Nutrition State Administrative Expense Allocation Formula, 26423-26425 2017-11730 Foreign Trade Foreign-Trade Zones Board NOTICES Production Activities: DPT Laboratories, Ltd., Foreign-Trade Zone 80, San Antonio, TX, 26434 2017-11833 Flemish Master Weavers, Foreign-Trade Zone 186, Waterville, ME, 26434 2017-11837 Pfizer, Inc., Foreign-Trade Zone 43, Battle Creek, MI, 26433-26434 2017-11835 Valeo North America, Inc. d/b/a Valeo Compressor North America, Foreign-Trade Zone 39, Dallas-Fort Worth, TX, 26435 2017-11836 Reorganizations Under Alternative Site Frameworks: Foreign-Trade Zone 19, Omaha, NE, 26435 2017-11834 Grain Inspection Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 26425-26426 2017-11806 Health and Human Health and Human Services Department See

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

See

Food and Drug Administration

See

Health Resources and Services Administration

See

National Institutes of Health

Health Resources Health Resources and Services Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Client-Level Data Reporting System, 26498-26499 2017-11716 Reconciliation Tool for Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education Program, 26499-26500 2017-11714 Homeland Homeland Security Department See

Federal Emergency Management Agency

See

U.S. Customs and Border Protection

Interior Interior Department See

Land Management Bureau

See

National Park Service

International Trade Adm International Trade Administration NOTICES Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Aluminum Extrusions From the People's Republic of China, 26438-26441 2017-11823 Certain Small Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line and Pressure Pipe From Romania, 26452-26454 2017-11825 Freshwater Crawfish Tail Meat From the People's Republic of China, 26435-26438 2017-11824 Initiation of Administrative Reviews, 26444-26452 2017-11828 Opportunity To Request Administrative Review, 26441-26444 2017-11827 Scope Rulings, 26454-26455 2017-11829 International Trade Com International Trade Commission NOTICES Investigations; Determinations, Modifications, and Rulings, etc.: Fine Denier Polyester Staple Fiber From China, India, Korea, Taiwan, and Vietnam, 26512-26513 2017-11755 Justice Department Justice Department See

Antitrust Division

See

Drug Enforcement Administration

NOTICES Proposed Consent Decrees: Oil Pollution Act, 26518-26519 2017-11783
Land Land Management Bureau NOTICES Public Lands; Temporary Closures: Washoe County, NV, 26505-26506 2017-11810 NASA National Aeronautics and Space Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 26519 2017-11775 National Credit National Credit Union Administration PROPOSED RULES Appeals Procedures, 26378-26391 2017-11319 Supervisory Review Committee; Procedures for Appealing Material Supervisory Determinations, 26391-26403 2017-11320 National Highway National Highway Traffic Safety Administration RULES Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards: Minimum Sound Requirements for Hybrid and Electric Vehicles, 26360 2017-11732 National Institute National Institutes of Health NOTICES Meetings: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, 26502 2017-11712 National Library of Medicine, 26500-26503 2017-11719 2017-11721 2017-11722 2017-11723 2017-11724 2017-11725 National Library of Medicine; Cancellation, 26500 2017-11720 National Oceanic National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RULES Delay of Discharge Requirements for U.S. Coast Guard Activities in Greater Farallones and Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuaries, 26339-26340 2017-11794 Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic: Reef Fish Fishery of Gulf of Mexico; Red Snapper Management Measures; Compliance with Court Order, 26376-26377 2017-11804 Taking and Importing Marine Mammals: Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Waterfront Construction, 26360-26376 2017-11805 PROPOSED RULES Plan for Periodic Review of Regulations, 26419-26422 2017-11815 NOTICES Permit Applications: Marine Mammals; File No. 20523, 26455 2017-11710 Marine Mammals; File No. 21114, 26455-26456 2017-11709 National Park National Park Service NOTICES National Register of Historic Places: Pending Nominations and Related Actions, 26506-26512 2017-11737 2017-11738 2017-11734 2017-11735 Nuclear Regulatory Nuclear Regulatory Commission NOTICES Exemptions and Combined Licenses; Amendments: South Carolina Electric and Gas Co.; South Carolina Public Service Authority, Virgil C. Summer Nuclear Station, Units 2 and 3; Passive Core Cooling System Condensate Return, 26520-26521 2017-11803 Meetings: Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards Subcommittee on Northwest Medical Isotopes, 26519-26520 2017-11799 Meetings; Sunshine Act, 26521 2017-11880 Postal Regulatory Postal Regulatory Commission NOTICES New Postal Products, 26521-26522 2017-11711 2017-11793 Rural Business Rural Business-Cooperative Service RULES Guaranteed Loanmaking and Servicing Regulations; Correction, 26335-26336 2017-11736 NOTICES Requests for Applications: Socially-Disadvantaged Groups Grants, 26426-26433 2017-11739 Rural Utilities Rural Utilities Service RULES Guaranteed Loanmaking and Servicing Regulations; Correction, 26335-26336 2017-11736 Securities Securities and Exchange Commission NOTICES Applications: Partners Group (USA) Inc., et al., 26554-26559 2017-11728 Self-Regulatory Organizations; Proposed Rule Changes: Bats BYX Exchange, Inc., 26539-26542 2017-11747 Bats BZX Exchange, Inc., 26542-26545 2017-11745 Bats EDGA Exchange, Inc., 26549-26552 2017-11746 Bats EDGX Exchange, Inc., 26529-26532, 26559-26562 2017-11744 2017-11751 BOX Options Exchange, LLC, 26536-26539 2017-11742 Chicago Board Options Exchange, Inc., 26523-26526 2017-11743 Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc., 26546-26548 2017-11752 Investors Exchange, LLC, 26552-26554 2017-11754 Miami International Securities Exchange LLC, 26526-26529 2017-11748 New York Stock Exchange LLC, 26562-26563 2017-11753 NYSE Arca, Inc., 26532-26536 2017-11749 2017-11750 State Department State Department NOTICES Culturally Significant Objects Imported for Exhibition: Great British Drawings From Ashmolean Museum Exhibition, 26565 2017-11644 Diplomatic Security Request for Higher Maximum Uniform Allotment, 26565 2017-11729 Meetings: International Maritime Organization's Technical Cooperation Committee, 26565-26566 2017-11811 Presidential Permits: NuStar Logistics, LP, 26563-26565 2017-11812 Transportation Department Transportation Department See

Federal Aviation Administration

See

Federal Railroad Administration

See

Federal Transit Administration

See

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

See

Transportation Statistics Bureau

Transportation Statistics Transportation Statistics Bureau NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Report of Traffic and Capacity Statistics: T-100 System, 26567-26569 2017-11789 Treasury Treasury Department See

Comptroller of the Currency

RULES Extension of Import Restrictions Imposed on Archaeological and Ethnological Materials From Peru, 26340-26348 2017-11841 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 26570 2017-11777
Customs U.S. Customs and Border Protection RULES Extension of Import Restrictions Imposed on Archaeological and Ethnological Materials From Peru, 26340-26348 2017-11841 NOTICES Country of Origin Determinations: Certain Surgical and Isolation Gowns, 26503-26504 2017-11839 Requests for Nominations: Commercial Customs Operations Advisory Committee, 26504-26505 2017-11840 Reader Aids

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82 108 Wednesday, June 7, 2017 Rules and Regulations DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Rural Business-Cooperative Service Rural Utilities Service 7 CFR Part 4279 RIN 0570-AA85 Guaranteed Loanmaking and Servicing Regulations; Correction AGENCY:

Rural Business-Cooperative Service and Rural Utilities Service, USDA.

ACTION:

Correcting amendment.

SUMMARY:

This document contains a correction to the final rule published in the Federal Register on June 3, 2016, entitled “Guaranteed Loanmaking and Servicing Regulations.” The Rural Business-Cooperative Service (Agency) is an agency within the Rural Development mission area of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) responsible for administering the Business and Industry (B&I) Guaranteed Loan Program. The B&I Guaranteed Loan Program is authorized by the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act and provides loan guarantees to banks and other approved lenders to finance private businesses located in rural areas.

DATES:

Effective June 7, 2017.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

David Chestnut, Rural Development, Business Programs, U.S. Department of Agriculture, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Stop 3224, Washington, DC 20250-3224; email: [email protected]; telephone number: (202) 401-0158.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Need for Correction

On June 3, 2016, the Agency published a final rule for the Business and Industry (B&I) Guaranteed Loan Program (81 FR 35984). Since then, the Agency has discovered the need for a correction to the regulation regarding provisions relating to the New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) program.

The preamble of the final rule publication noted that the rule has been expanded to include a lender's leveraged loan to accommodate the mechanics of the NMTC program. The Agency has received comments from many practitioners of the NMTC program that the Agency has incorrectly stated in § 4279.116(b) that a “sub-CDE” is the borrower in a leveraged equity transaction for the NMTC program. A NMTC sub-CDE is not a borrowing entity; it is a lending entity established for a single specific NMTC investment. The correct borrower in the mechanics of a leveraged equity NMTC transaction is an investor fund entity owned by a NMTC investor and a leveraged lender, which has been established for a single specific NMTC project. The investor fund entity makes a qualified equity investment to the sub-CDE that in turn provides loans to an eligible business. To correct this error and accommodate the mechanics of a leveraged equity transaction within the NMTC program, the Agency is replacing the word “sub-CDE,” with the words “investor fund entity” as it relates to an eligible borrowing entity.

List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 4279

Loan programs—Business and Industry, Direct loan programs, Economic development, Energy, Energy efficiency improvements, Grant programs, Guaranteed loan programs, Renewable energy systems, Rural areas, and Rural development assistance.

Accordingly, 7 CFR part 4279 is amended by making the following correcting amendments:

PART 4279—GUARANTEED LOANMAKING

1. The authority citation for part 4279 continues to read as follows: Authority:

5 U.S.C. 301; and 7 U.S.C. 1989.

Subpart B—Business and Industry Loans

2. In § 4279.116, revise paragraphs (b) introductory text, (b)(1)(i) through (iii), (b)(2) through (4), and (b)(6),(8),(11),(12), and(13) to read as follows:

§ 4279.116 New Markets Tax Credit program.

(b) Loan guarantees for the leveraged lender. The provisions of § 4279.117(s) notwithstanding, an investor fund entity, such as an investor partnership or investor LLC, may be an eligible borrower as specified in paragraph (b)(1) of this section. Paragraphs (b)(2) through (13) of this section identify modifications to subpart B of this part that apply when the eligible borrower is an investor fund entity.

(1) * * *

(i) The investor fund entity must be established for a single specific NMTC investment;

(ii) The lender is not an affiliate of the investor fund entity;

(iii) One hundred percent of the guaranteed loan funds are or will be invested in one or more sub-CDEs that will then be loaned directly to a Qualified Active Low Income Community Business (QALICB), as defined by applicable regulations of the Internal Revenue Service and are or will be used by the QALICB in accordance with §§ 4279.113 and 4279.117. All of the B&I guaranteed loan funds must be “passed through” the sub-CDE to the QALICB through a direct tracing method. The QALICB's project must be the ultimate use of the B&I guaranteed loan funds; and

(2) The provisions of § 4279.119 apply except that the loan guarantee limits apply to the QALICB and not to the investor fund entity, who would otherwise be understood to be the “borrower.”

(3) Section 4279.126 applies to both the borrower (investor fund entity) and the QALICB. The terms and payment schedule of the lender's loan to the investor fund entity must be at least equal to the terms and payment schedule of the sub-CDE's loan to the QALICB. An Agency approved unequal or escalating schedule of principal and interest payments may be used for a NMTC loan. The lender may require additional principal repayment by a co-borrower, such as an owner or principal of the QALICB. The lender or sub-CDE may require a debt repayment reserve fund or sinking fund; however, such fund is not in lieu of a principal repayment schedule in accordance with § 4279.126 as amended by this paragraph.

(4) Except for § 4279.131(b), § 4279.131 applies to both the lender's loan to the investor fund entity and the sub-CDE's loan to the QALICB. Section 4279.131(b) applies only to the sub-CDE's loan to the QALICB. Section 4279.116(a)(4) also applies when calculating tangible balance sheet equity.

(6) Section 4279.137 applies to both the borrower (investor fund entity) and the QALICB.

(8) Section 4279.161 applies to both the borrower (investor fund entity) and the QALICB. As part of the application completed by the lender in accordance with § 4279.161, the application documentation must include comparable information for the loan (using the B&I guaranteed loan funds) between the sub-CDE and QALICB. The requirements of § 4279.161 apply to the loan application, application analysis and underwriting, and loan documents between the sub-CDE and QALICB. The lender must include these materials in its guaranteed loan application to the Agency.

(11) When complying with the planning and performing development provisions in § 4279.167, the lender is responsible for ensuring that both the sub-CDE's loan to the QALICB and the QALICB's project comply with the provisions in § 4279.167.

(12) Section 4279.180 applies to both the borrower (investor fund entity) and the QALICB.

(13) Section 4279.181 applies to both the borrower (investor fund entity) and the QALICB.

Dated: May 18, 2017. Chad Parker, Acting Administrator, Rural Business-Cooperative Service. Dated: May 25, 2017. Chris McLean, Acting Administrator, Rural Utilities Service.
[FR Doc. 2017-11736 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-XY-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2017-0217; Airspace Docket No. 17-ANM-8] Amendment of Class E Airspace; Moses Lake, WA; Olympia, WA AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Final rule, technical amendment, withdrawal.

SUMMARY:

This action withdraws the final rule, technical amendment published in the Federal Register on April 25, 2017. In that action, the FAA amended Class E Airspace at Grant County International Airport, Moses Lake, WA, and Olympia Regional Airport, Olympia, WA. The FAA has determined that withdrawal of the final rule, technical amendment is warranted since a change in the geographic coordinates of the airports will affect the charted boundaries of the airspace, and therefore should be considered under the full rulemaking process.

DATES:

Effective Date: 0901 UTC, June 7, 2017.

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:

The FAA published a final rule in the Federal Register (82 FR 18983, April 25, 2017) amending Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 71 amending Class E Airspace designated as an extension to a Class D or Class E surface area at Grant County International Airport, Moses Lake, WA, and Olympia Regional Airport, Olympia, WA, by eliminating the Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) part-time status. Additionally, the action updated the geographic coordinates of Grant County International Airport, and Fairchild AFB, as listed in the Grant County International Airport Class D and Class E legal descriptions. The FAA found that by updating the geographic coordinates of the airports, the charted boundaries of the airspace were affected sufficiently to warrant full consideration under the rulemaking process. As a result, the final rule, technical amendment is being withdrawn.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 71

Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air).

The Withdrawal

In consideration of the foregoing, the final rule, technical amendment for Docket No. FAA 2017-0217; Airspace Docket No. 17-ANM-8, as published in the Federal Register of April 25, 2017, (82 FR 18983) FR Doc. 2017-08241, is hereby withdrawn.

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.

Issued in Seattle, Washington, on May 25, 2017. Sam S.L. Shrimpton, Acting Group Manager, Operations Support Group, Western Service Center.
[FR Doc. 2017-11582 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2016-9178; Airspace Docket No. 16-ASO-12] Amendment of VOR Federal Airways; Eastern United States AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

This action modifies VOR Federal airways V-16, V-94 and V-124, in the eastern United States due to the planned decommissioning of the Jacks Creek, TN, VOR/DME navigation aid.

DATES:

Effective date 0901, August 17, 2017. The Director of the Federal Register approves this incorporation by reference action under Title 1, Code of Federal Regulations, part 51, subject to the annual revision of FAA Order 7400.11 and publication of conforming amendments.

ADDRESSES:

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_federalregulations/ibr_locations.html.

FAA Order 7400.11, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, is published yearly and effective on September 15.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Paul Gallant, Airspace Policy Group, Office of Airspace Services, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20591; telephone: (202) 267-8783.

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 the airspace necessary to ensure the safety of aircraft and the efficient use of airspace. This regulation is within the scope of that authority as it modifies the air traffic service route structure in the eastern United States to maintain the efficient flow of air traffic.

History

On December 1, 2016, the FAA published in the Federal Register a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend VOR Federal airways V-16, V-94 and V-124, due to the planned decommissioning of the Jacks Creek, TN, VOR/DME (81 FR 86633) Docket No. 2016-9178. Interested parties were invited to participate in this rulemaking effort by submitting written comments on the proposal. No comments were received.

Domestic VOR Federal airways are published in paragraph 6010(a) 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 VOR Federal airways listed in this document will be subsequently published in the Order.

Availability and Summary of Documents for Incorporation by Reference

This document amends 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 Rule

This final rule amends Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 71 by modifying VOR Federal airways V-16, V-94 and V-124, due to the planned decommissioning of the Jacks Creek, TN, VOR/DME. The route changes are described below.

V-16: V-16 extends between Los Angeles, CA, and Boston, MA. This action amends that portion of the route that reads “. . .Marvell, AR; Holly Springs, MS; Jacks Creek, TN; Shelbyville, TN. . ..” to read as follows: “. . .Marvell, AR; to Holly Springs, MS. From Shelbyville, TN;. . ..” thus eliminating Jacks Creek, TN, from the route.

V-94: V-94 extends between Blythe, CA and Bowling Green, KY. This action terminates the route at Holly Springs, MS, thus eliminating the segments of the route from Holly Springs, MS, through Jacks Creek, TN, to Bowling Green, KY.

V-124: V-124 extends between Bonham, TX and Graham, TN. This action terminates the route at Gilmore, AR, thus eliminating the segments from Gilmore, AR, through Jacks Creek, TN, to Graham, TN.

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. It, therefore: (1) Is not a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866; (2) is not a “significant rule” under Department of Transportation (DOT) Regulatory Policies and Procedures (44 FR 11034; February 26, 1979); and (3) does not warrant preparation of a regulatory evaluation because the anticipated impact is so minimal. Since this is a routine matter that only affects air traffic procedures and air navigation, it is certified that this rule does not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

Environmental Review

The FAA has determined that this action of modifying VOR Federal airways V-16, V-94 and V-124 in the eastern United States due to the planned decommissioning of the Jacks Creek, TN, VOR/DME navigation aid qualifies for categorical exclusion under the National Environmental Policy Act and its agency-specific implementing regulations in FAA Order 1050.1F, “Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures” regarding categorical exclusions for procedural actions at paragraph 5-6.5a, which categorically excludes from full environmental impact review rulemaking actions that designate or modify classes of airspace areas, airways, routes, and reporting points. Therefore, this airspace action is not expected to result in any significant environmental impacts. In accordance with FAA Order 1050.1F, paragraph 5-2 regarding Extraordinary Circumstances, this action has been reviewed for factors and circumstances in which a normally categorically excluded action may have a significant environmental impact requiring further analysis, and it is determined that no extraordinary circumstances exist that warrant preparation of an environmental assessment.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 71

Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air).

The Amendment

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

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

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

§ 71.1 [Amended]
2. The incorporation by reference in 14 CFR 71.1 of FAA Order 7400.11A, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2016 and effective September 15, 2016, is amended as follows: Paragraph 6010(a)—Domestic VOR Federal Airways V-16 [Amended]

From Los Angeles, CA; Paradise, CA; Palm Springs, CA; Blythe, CA; Buckeye, AZ; Phoenix, AZ; INT Phoenix 155° and Stanfield, AZ, 105° radials; Tucson, AZ; San Simon, AZ; INT San Simon 119° and Columbus, NM, 277° radials; Columbus; El Paso, TX; Salt Flat, TX; Wink, TX; INT Wink 066° and Big Spring, TX, 260° radials; Big Spring; Abilene, TX; Bowie, TX; Bonham, TX; Paris, TX; Texarkana, AR; Pine Bluff, AR; Marvell, AR; to Holly Springs, MS. From Shelbyville, TN; Hinch Mountain, TN; Volunteer, TN; Holston Mountain, TN; Pulaski, VA; Roanoke, VA; Lynchburg, VA; Flat Rock, VA; Richmond, VA; INT Richmond 039° and Patuxent, MD, 228° radials; Patuxent; Smyrna, DE; Cedar Lake, NJ; Coyle, NJ; INT Coyle 036° and Kennedy, NY, 209° radials; Kennedy; INT Kennedy 040° and Calverton, NY 261° radials; Calverton; Norwich, CT; Boston, MA. The airspace within Mexico and the airspace below 2,000 feet MSL outside the United States is excluded. The airspace within Restricted Areas R-5002A, R-5002C, and R-5002D is excluded during their times of use. The airspace within Restricted Areas R-4005 and R-4006 is excluded.

V-94 [Amended]

From Blythe, CA, INT Blythe 094° and Gila Bend, AZ, 299° radials; Gila Bend; Stanfield, AZ; 55 miles, 74 miles, 95 MSL, San Simon, AZ; Deming, NM; Newman, TX; Salt Flat, TX; Wink, TX; Midland, TX; Tuscola, TX; Glen Rose, TX; Cedar Creek, TX: Gregg County, TX; Elm Grove, LA; Monroe, LA; Greenville, MS; to Holly Springs, MS.

V-124 [Amended]

From Bonham, TX, via Paris, TX; Hot Springs, AR; Little Rock, AR; to Gilmore, AR.

Issued in Washington, DC, on May 23, 2017. Rodger A. Dean Jr., Manager, Airspace Policy Group.
[FR Doc. 2017-11676 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2017-0216; Airspace Docket No. 17-ANM-7] Amendment of Class D and Class E Airspace for the Following Idaho Towns; Lewiston, ID; Pocatello, ID; and Twin Falls, ID AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Final rule, technical amendment, withdrawal.

SUMMARY:

This action withdraws the final rule, technical amendment published in the Federal Register on April 26, 2017. In that action, the FAA amended Class E Airspace at Lewiston-Nez Perce County Airport, Lewiston, ID; Pocatello Regional Airport, Pocatello, ID; and Joslin Field-Magic Valley Regional Airport, Twin Falls, ID. The FAA has determined that withdrawal of the final rule, technical amendment is warranted since a change in the geographic coordinates of the airports will affect the charted boundaries of the airspace, and therefore should be considered under the full rulemaking process.

DATES:

Effective Date: 0901 UTC, June 7, 2017.

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:

History

The FAA published a final rule in the Federal Register (82 FR 19187, April 26, 2017) amending Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 71 amending Class E Airspace designated as an extension to a Class D or Class E surface area at Lewiston-Nez Perce County Airport, Lewiston, ID; Pocatello Regional Airport, Pocatello, ID; and Joslin Field-Magic Valley Regional Airport, Twin Falls, ID, by eliminating the Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) part-time status. Additionally, the action updated the geographic coordinates of these airports and the Pocatello VHF Omnidirectional Radar Range Tactical Air Navigation Aid (VORTAC), the Twin Falls VORTAC, and American Falls Airport listed in the associated Class D and Class E airspace descriptions for Pocatello Regional Airport, and Joslin Field-Magic Valley Regional Airport. The FAA found that by updating the geographic coordinates of the airports and navigation aids, the charted boundaries of the airspace were affected sufficiently to warrant full consideration under the rulemaking process. As a result, the final rule, technical amendment is being withdrawn.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 71

Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air).

The Withdrawal

In consideration of the foregoing, the final rule, technical amendment for Docket No. FAA 2017-0216; Airspace Docket No. 17-ANM-7, as published in the Federal Register of April 26, 2017, (82 FR 19187) FR Doc. 2017-08366, is hereby withdrawn.

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.

Issued in Seattle, Washington, on May 24, 2017. Sam S.L. Shrimpton, Acting Group Manager, Operations Support Group, Western Service Center.
[FR Doc. 2017-11474 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2017-0054; Airspace Docket No. 17-ANM-2] Amendment of Class D and Class E Airspace; Aspen, CO; and Pueblo, CO AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Final rule, technical amendment, withdrawal.

SUMMARY:

This action withdraws the final rule, technical amendment published in the Federal Register on April 25, 2017. In that action, the FAA amended Class E Airspace at Aspen Pitkin County/Sardy Field, Aspen, CO, and Pueblo Memorial Airport, Pueblo, CO. The FAA has determined that withdrawal of the final rule, technical amendment is warranted since a change in the geographic coordinates of the airports will affect the charted boundaries of the airspace, and therefore should be considered under the full rulemaking process.

DATES:

Effective Date: 0901 UTC, June 7, 2017.

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:

History

The FAA published a final rule in the Federal Register (82 FR 18981, April 25, 2017) amending Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 71 amending Class E Airspace designated as an extension to a Class D or Class E surface area at Aspen Pitkin County/Sardy Field, Aspen, CO, and Pueblo Memorial Airport, Pueblo, CO, by eliminating the Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) part-time status. Additionally, the action updated the geographic coordinates of Aspen Pitkin County/Sardy Field, Aspen, CO, and Pueblo Memorial Airport, Pueblo, CO listed in the associated Class D and Class E airspace descriptions for Aspen Pitkin County/Sardy Field, and Pueblo Memorial Airport. The FAA found that by updating the geographic coordinates of the airports, the charted boundaries of the airspace were affected sufficiently to warrant full consideration under the rulemaking process. As a result, the final rule, technical amendment is being withdrawn.

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 71

Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air).

The Withdrawal

In consideration of the foregoing, the final rule, technical amendment for Docket No. FAA 2017-0054; Airspace Docket No. 17-ANM-2, as published in the Federal Register of April 25, 2017, (82 FR 18981) FR Doc. 2017-08243, is hereby withdrawn.

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.

Issued in Seattle, Washington, on May 22, 2017. Sam S.L. Shrimpton, Acting Group Manager, Operations Support Group, Western Service Center.
[FR Doc. 2017-11475 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 15 CFR Part 922 [Docket Number 160413330-7488-03] RIN 0648-BF99 Delay of Discharge Requirements for U.S. Coast Guard Activities in Greater Farallones and Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuaries AGENCY:

Office of National Marine Sanctuaries (ONMS), National Ocean Service (NOS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Department of Commerce (DOC).

ACTION:

Final rule; notice of delay of effectiveness for discharge requirements with regard to U.S. Coast Guard activities.

SUMMARY:

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) expanded the boundaries of Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary (now renamed Greater Farallones National Marine Sanctuary or GFNMS) and Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary (CBNMS) to an area north and west of their previous boundaries with a final rule published on March 12, 2015. The final rule entered into effect on June 9, 2015. At that time, NOAA postponed the effectiveness of the discharge requirements in both sanctuaries' regulations in the areas added to GFNMS and CBNMS boundaries in 2015 with regard to U.S. Coast Guard activities for six months. Since then, NOAA published three documents to extend the postponement of the discharge requirements to provide adequate time for completion of an environmental assessment, and subsequent rulemaking, as appropriate. The current extension would end on June 9, 2017. This document extends the postponement of the discharge requirements for these activities for another six months for the same reasons.

DATES:

The effectiveness for the discharge requirements in both CBNMS and GFNMS expansion areas with regard to U.S. Coast Guard activities is December 9, 2017.

ADDRESSES:

Copies of documents relating to the expansion, including the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS), final management plans, and the final rule published on March 12, 2015, can be viewed or downloaded at http://farallones.noaa.gov/manage/expansion_cbgf.html.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Maria Brown, Greater Farallones National Marine Sanctuary Superintendent, at [email protected] or 415-561-6622.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

On March 12, 2015, NOAA expanded the boundaries of Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary (now renamed Greater Farallones National Marine Sanctuary or GFNMS) and Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary (CBNMS) to an area north and west of their previous boundaries with a final rule (80 FR 13078). The final rule entered into effect on June 9, 2015 (80 FR 34047). In the course of the rulemaking to expand GFNMS and CBNMS, NOAA learned from U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) that the discharge regulations had the potential to impair the operations of USCG vessels and aircraft conducting law enforcement and on-water training exercises in GFNMS and CBNMS expansion areas. The USCG supports national marine sanctuary management by providing routine surveillance and dedicated law enforcement of the National Marine Sanctuaries Act (NMSA) and sanctuary regulations. To ensure that the March 12, 2015, rule did not undermine USCG's ability to perform its duties, at that time, NOAA postponed the effectiveness of the discharge requirements in both sanctuaries' regulations with regard to USCG activities in the expansion areas for six months. Three additional six-month postponements of the effectiveness of the discharge requirements were published in the Federal Register on December 1, 2015 (80 FR 74985), May 31, 2016 (81 FR 34268), and December 6, 2016 (81 FR 87803), to provide adequate time for completion of an environmental assessment and to determine NOAA's next steps. Without further NOAA action, the discharge regulations would become effective with regard to USCG activities on June 9, 2017. However, NOAA needs more time to develop alternatives for an environmental assessment developed pursuant to the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act. Therefore, this document postpones the effectiveness of the discharge requirements in the expansion areas of both sanctuaries with regard to USCG activities for another six months, until December 9, 2017. During this time, NOAA will continue to consider how to address USCG's concerns and, among other things, whether to exempt certain USCG activities in sanctuary regulations. The public, other federal agencies, and interested stakeholders will be given an opportunity to comment on various alternatives that are being considered. This will include the opportunity to review any proposed rule and related environmental analysis.

II. Classification A. National Environmental Policy Act

NOAA previously conducted an environmental analysis under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) as part of the rulemaking process leading to the expansion of CBNMS and GFNMS, which addressed regulations regarding the discharge of any matter or material in the sanctuaries. Potential environmental impacts of the decision to postpone effectiveness are sufficiently encompassed within the impacts analysis of the environmental baseline and the no action alternative presented in that analysis. Should NOAA decide to amend the regulations governing discharges for USGS activities in CBNMS and GFNMS, any additional environmental analysis required under NEPA would be prepared and released for public comment.

B. Executive Order 12866: Regulatory Impact

This action has been determined to be not significant for purposes of the meaning of Executive Order 12866.

C. Administrative Procedure Act

The Assistant Administrator of National Ocean Service (NOS) finds good cause pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) to waive the notice and comment requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) because this action is administrative in nature. This action postpones the effectiveness of the discharge requirements in the regulations for CBNMS and GFNMS in the areas added to the sanctuaries' boundaries in 2015 (subject to notice and comment review) with regard to USCG activities for six months to provide adequate time for public scoping, completion of an environmental assessment, and subsequent rulemaking, as appropriate. Should NOAA decide to amend the regulations governing discharges in CBNMS and GFNMS, it would publish a proposed rule followed by an appropriate public comment period as required by the APA. The substance of the underlying regulations remains unchanged. Therefore, providing notice and opportunity for public comment under the APA would serve no useful purpose. The delay in effectiveness provided by this action will also enable NOAA to fully implement its statutory responsibilities under the NMSA to protect resources of a national marine sanctuary. For the reasons above, the Assistant Administrator also finds good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(d) to waive the 30-day delay in effectiveness and make this action effective immediately upon publication.

Authority:

16 U.S.C. 1431 et seq.

Dated: May 30, 2017. W. Russell Callender, Assistant Administrator for Ocean Services and Coastal Management.
[FR Doc. 2017-11794 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-NK-P
DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY U.S. Customs and Border Protection DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY 19 CFR Part 12 [CBP Dec. 17-03] RIN 1515-AE29 Extension of Import Restrictions Imposed on Archaeological and Ethnological Materials From Peru AGENCY:

U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Department of Homeland Security; Department of the Treasury.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

This final rule amends the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) regulations to reflect the extension of import restrictions on certain archaeological and ethnological materials from Peru. The restrictions, which were originally imposed by Treasury Decision (T.D.) 97-50 and last extended by CBP Dec. 12-11, are due to expire on June 9, 2017, unless extended. The Acting Assistant Secretary for Educational and Cultural Affairs, United States Department of State, has determined that conditions continue to warrant the imposition of import restrictions. The Designated List of archaeological and ethnological materials described in T.D. 97-50 is revised in this document to reflect the addition of Colonial period documents and manuscripts. Accordingly, the restrictions will remain in effect for an additional 5 years, and the CBP regulations are being amended to indicate this fourth extension. These restrictions are being extended pursuant to determinations of the United States Department of State made under the terms of the Convention on Cultural Property Implementation Act, which implements the 1970 United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property.

DATES:

Effective Date: June 9, 2017.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For legal aspects, Lisa L. Burley, Chief, Cargo Security, Carriers and Restricted Merchandise Branch, Regulations and Rulings, Office of Trade, (202) 325-0215, [email protected] For operational aspects, William R. Scopa, Branch Chief, Partner Government Agency Branch, Trade Policy and Programs, Office of Trade, (202) 863-6554, [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

Pursuant to the provisions of the Convention on Cultural Property Implementation Act (Pub. L. 97-446, 19 U.S.C. 2601 et seq.), which implements the 1970 United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Convention, in U.S. law, the United States entered into a bilateral agreement with the Republic of Peru on June 9, 1997, concerning the imposition of import restrictions on archaeological material from the Pre-Hispanic cultures and certain ethnological material from the Colonial period of Peru (“the Memorandum of Understanding between the United States and the Republic of Peru”). On June 11, 1997, the former United States Customs Service published T.D. 97-50 in the Federal Register (62 FR 31713), which amended 19 CFR 12.104g(a) to reflect the imposition of these restrictions, and included a list designating the types of archaeological and ethnological materials covered by the restrictions. These restrictions continued the protection of archaeological materials from the Sipán Archaeological Region forming part of the remains of the Moche culture that were first subject to emergency import restriction on May 7, 1990 (T.D. 90-37).

Import restrictions listed in 19 CFR 12.104g(a) are “effective for no more than five years beginning on the date on which the agreement enters into force with respect to the United States. This period may be extended for additional periods no more than five years if it is determined that the factors which justified the initial agreement still pertain and no cause for suspension of the agreement exists” (19 CFR 12.104g(a)).

On June 6, 2002, the former United States Customs Service published T.D. 02-30 in the Federal Register (67 FR 38877), which amended 19 CFR 12.104g(a) to reflect the extension of these import restrictions for an additional period of five years until June 9, 2007.

On June 6, 2007, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), published CBP Dec. 07-27 in the Federal Register (72 FR 31176), which amended 19 CFR 12.104g(a) to reflect the extension of these import restrictions for an additional period of five years until June 9, 2012.

On June 7, 2012, CBP published CBP Dec. 12-11 in the Federal Register (77 FR 33624), which amended 19 CFR 12.104g(a) to reflect the extension of these import restrictions for an additional period of five years until June 9, 2017.

On January 11, 2017, after reviewing the findings and recommendations of the Cultural Property Advisory Committee, the Acting Assistant Secretary for Educational and Cultural Affairs, United States Department of State, concluding that the cultural heritage of Peru continues to be in jeopardy from pillage of archaeological and certain ethnological materials, made the necessary statutory determinations and decided to extend the import restrictions for an additional five-year period. Diplomatic notes have been exchanged reflecting the extension of those restrictions for an additional five-year period and amendment of their coverage to include Colonial manuscripts and documents. CBP is amending 19 CFR 12.104g(a) accordingly.

Amended Designated List

The Designated List of Archaeological and Ethnological Materials from Peru is amended to include Colonial period documents and manuscripts. For the reader's convenience, the Designated List from T.D. 97-50 is reproduced below with the additional category of Colonial manuscripts and documents. Note that the Designated List also subsumes those categories of Moche objects from the Sipán Archaeological Region of Peru for which import restrictions have been in place since 1990 (see T.D. 90-37).

The Designated List includes archaeological materials known to originate in Peru, ranging in date from approximately 12,000 B.C. to A.D. 1532, and including, but not limited to, objects comprised of textiles, metals, ceramics, lithics, perishable remains, and human remains that represent cultures that include, but are not limited to, the Chavín, Paracas, Vicús, Moche, Virú, Lima, Nazca, Recuay, Tiahuanaco, Huari, Chimú, Chancay, Cuzco, and Inca cultures. The Designated List also includes certain categories of ethnological materials from Peru dating to the Colonial period (A.D. 1532-1821), limited to: (1) Objects directly related to the pre-Columbian past, whose pre-Columbian design and function are maintained with some Colonial characteristics and may include textiles, metal objects, and ceremonial wood, ceramic and stone vessels; (2) objects used for religious evangelism among indigenous peoples and including Colonial paintings and sculpture with distinct indigenous iconography; and (3) Colonial manuscripts and documents. The Designated List may also be found online at: https://eca.state.gov/cultural-heritage-center/cultural-property-protection/bilateral-agreements/peru.

The list is divided into seven categories of objects:

I. Pre-Columbian Textiles II. Pre-Columbian Metals III. Pre-Columbian Ceramics IV. Pre-Columbian Lithics V. Pre-Columbian Perishable Remains VI. Pre-Columbian Human Remains VII. Ethnological Objects A. Objects Directly Related to the Pre-Columbian Past B. Objects Used for Religious Evangelism Among Indigenous Peoples C. Colonial Manuscripts and Documents.

What follows immediately is a chart of chronological periods and cultural classifications currently widely used for identifying archaeological remains in Peru. All dates are approximate.

Rowe Lumbreras 1440-1532 A.D Late Horizon Inca Empire. 1100-1440 A.D Late Intermediate Period Regional states and kingdoms. 600-1100 A.D Middle Horizon Huari Empire. 200 B.C.-600 A.D Early Intermediate Period Regional Cultures. 1000-200 B.C Early Horizon Middle and Late Formative. 1700-1000 B.C Initial Period Early Formative. 2500-1800 B.C Late Pre-ceramic Late Archaic. 4500-2500 B.C Middle Pre-ceramic Middle Archaic. 6000-4500 B.C Early Pre-ceramic Early Archaic. 12000-6000 B.C Early Pre-ceramic Hunter-Gatherers.

The following Designated List is representational and may be amended as appropriate.

I. Pre-Columbian Textiles

Textiles representing these principal cultures and main classes of objects:

A. Chimú

Pillow—Piece of cloth sewn into a bag shape and stuffed with cotton or vegetal fibers. Generally the cloth is made in tapestry technique. 60 cm. x 40 cm.

Painted Cloth—Flat cloth of cotton on which designs are painted. Range between 20 cm. and 6.1 m.

Headdress—Headdresses are usually made of feathers, especially white, green, and dark brown, which are attached to cloth and fitted to a cane or basketry frame. Feathers on the upper part are arranged to stand upright.

Feather Cloth—decorated with bird feathers, especially panels and tunics. They vary in shape and size; generally they depict geometric motif and volutes. Vary from 20 cm.-3 m. in length, and may be up to 1.5 m. in width.

Panels—Chimú panels may be of two types: Tapestry weave or plain-weave cotton. Isolated anthropomorphic designs predominate and may be associated with zoomorphic motifs. Vary from 20 cm. x 20 cm. to 2.0 m. x 1.8 m.

Belts and Sashes—Generally made in tapestry technique, and predominantly of red, white, ocher, and black. As with other Chimú textiles, they generally depict human figures with rayed headdresses. Up to 2.20 m. in length.

B. Chancay

Loom—Looms are commonly found in Chancay culture, sometimes with pieces of the textile still on the loom. Often these pieces of cloth show varied techniques and are referred to as “samples.” 50 cm. x 20 cm.

Loincloth—Triangular panels of cloth with tapestry woven borders.

Dolls—Three dimensional human figures stuffed with vegetal fiber to which hair and other decorations are added. Sometimes they depict lone females; in other cases they are arranged in groups. Most important, the eyes are woven in tapestry technique; in fakes, they have embroidered features. Usually 20 cm. tall and 8 cm. wide.

False Head—In Chancay culture, false heads are made on a cotton or vegetal fiber cushion covered with plain-weave cloth, decorated with shells, beads, metal, wood, or painting to depict facial features. They sometimes have real hair. Usually 30 cm. x 35 cm.

Unku/Tunic—Varied sizes and styles. Some are in plain weave, others in gauze, still others are in tapestry technique or brocade. They are recognized by their iconography, which includes geometric motifs, birds, fish, plants, and human figures. Miniatures are tiny; regular size examples are about 50 cm. x 50 cm.

Belt—Chancay belts are multicolored, with geometric motifs rendered in tapestry technique. Sometimes the ends are finished in faux-velour technique. 2 m. x 5 cm.

Panels—Chancay panels may be made in tapestry technique or may be painted on plain weave cloth. In these latter cases, the panels may depict fish, parrots, monkeys, viszcachas, felines, foxes, and human figures. Vary in size from miniatures to 4 m. x 2 m.

Standards—Chancay standards are supported on a frame of straight reeds covered with cotton cloth which is painted in anthropomorphic designs in ochers and black. Sometimes they have a handle. 20 cm. x 20 cm.

Gauze—Pieces of cloth made in openwork gauze technique, with very fine cotton threads. May have embroidered designs in the same thread that depict birds or other flora and fauna. Usually 80 cm. x 80 cm.; some are smaller.

C. Nazca

Three-Dimensional Cloth—Cloth made in three dimensions, using needles. Of many and bright colors, knitted in long strips. Each figure is approx. 5 cm. long x 2 cm. wide.

Unku/Tunic—These include miniature and regular-sized tunics. They are generally of one color, mostly light brown. The neck edges, hem, and fringes have multicolored geometric designs. Fringes end in woven braids. Vary in size from miniatures up to approx. 1.5 m. x .8 m.

Bags—There are bags of many sizes, from miniatures to large ones, generally with a narrow opening and a wide pouch. Some are decorated with fringe. Their iconography resembles the unku (tunic), stylized designs in yellow, red, and dark and light blue.

Sash—Nazca sashes are made on special looms. Their ends are decorated with plied fringe.

Tie-Dye (Painted) Cloth—Most common are those made in the tie-dye technique, in which the textile is knotted and tied before it is dyed, so that when it is untied, there are negative images of diamonds, squares, and concentric dots. Most common are orange, red, blue, green, and yellow colors. Vary from approx. 20 cm. x 20 cm. to 2.0 m. x 1.8 m.

Patchwork Cloth—Variant of the Tie-Dye cloth, in which little panels are made and later sewn together so that the resulting textile includes rectangles of tie-dyed panels of different colors. The cloth may have a decorative fringe. Vary from 20 cm. x 20 cm. to 2.0 m. x 1.8 m.

Wara/Loincloth—Generally made of a flat piece of cloth with colorful borders depicting stylized geometric motifs. They terminate in fringe. 50 cm. x 30 cm.

Fans—The frame is of vegetal fiber provided with twisted cord into which feathers are inserted. Commonly two colors of feathers are attached in this way, such as orange and green, or yellow and blue. 30 cm. x 20 cm.

D. Huari

Panel—Characterized by a complex and abstract iconography. Made in tapestry technique with a range of colors, including browns, beiges, yellows, reds, oranges, and greens. Vary from 20 cm. x 20 cm. to 2.0 m. x 1.8 m.

Unku/tunic—Large with an abstract and geometric iconography. Commonly the designs repeat in vertical bands. Generally these tunics have a cotton warp and camelid fiber weft. Some are so finely woven that there are 100 threads per cm2. Vary in size from miniatures up to 1.5 m. x 80 cm.

Caps—Most common are the so-called “four-corner hats” made in a faux-velour technique that results in a velvety texture. On the base cloth, small tufts of brightly-colored wool are inserted.

Vincha/headband or sashes—These garments are made in tapestry weave or faux-velour technique and depict geometric motifs.

Bags—Bags have an opening which is somewhat narrower than the body, with designs depicting felines, camelids, human faces, and faces with animal attributes.

E. Paracas

Esclavina/Small shoulder poncho—Paracas esclavinas are unique for their decoration with brightly colored images in Paracas style such as birds, flowers, animals, and human figures. Vary in size from miniatures up to 60 cm. x 30 cm.

Mantle—Paracas mantles can be divided into five types, based on their decoration. All are approximately 2.5 m. x 1.6 m.

a. Mantles with a plain field and woven borders;

b. Mantles with decorative (embroidered) borders and plain field;

c. Mantles with decorative (embroidered) borders and a decorative stripe in the center field;

d. Mantles with embroidered borders and center field embroidered in checkerboard-fashion;

e. Mantles with embroidered borders and alternating diagonals of embroidered figures in the center field.

Gauzes—Paracas gauzes are made of one color, such as lilac, yellow, red, or grey. They are generally rectangular and have a soft and delicate texture. Approx. 1 m. x 1 m.

Panels—Paracas panels are generally of cloth and may have been used for utilitarian purposes. They are generally undecorated. Vary from 20 cm. x 20 cm. to 2 m. x 1.8 m.

Skirts—Paracas skirts are of two types: Some are plain, made of cotton with decoration reserved for the ends; there are others that are elaborately embroidered with colorful images rendered in wool. These often form sets with mantles and other garments. Skirts are rectangular and very wide, with two fringed ties. 3 m. long and 70 cm. wide.

Wara/Loincloth—Made of cotton, not as large as skirts, and may have embroidered edges.

Slings—Paracas slings are decorated in Cavernas style, made of vegetal fiber, and are of small size, generally 1.5 m. x 5 cm.

Furs—There are numerous examples of animal skins reported from Paracas contexts, including the skins of the fox, vizcacha, guinea pig. Most are poorly preserved.

F. Moche

Bags—Moche bags are usually square, small, and have a short handle. They are made in tapestry technique with brightly-woven designs. Principal colors used are white, black, red, light blue, and ocher.

Panels—Recognizable by their iconography, these tapestry-technique panels may show people on balsa-reed rafts surrounded by a retinue. They are rendered in a geometric fashion, and are outlined in black and shown in profile. Scenes of marine life and fauna predominate. Vary from 20 cm. x 20 cm. to 2 m. x 1.8 m.

Ornamental canes—Small canes are “woven” together in a twill technique using colorful threads that depict anthropomorphic designs. Approx. 10 cm. x 10 cm.

G. Lambayeque

Panels—Lambayeque panels are small, made in tapestry technique, of cotton and wool. Vary from 20 cm. x 20 cm. to 2 m. x 1.8 m.

H. Inca

Sling—There are two types of Inca slings. Ceremonial ones are oversize and elaborately decorated with geometric motifs, with long fringes. The other type is smaller and utilitarian, almost always with decoration only on the pouch and far ends. The decoration is geometric and the slings have fringed ends.

Unku/tunic—Inca tunics are well-made and colorful, mostly in red, olive green, black, and yellow. Decorative elements may be arrayed checkerboard fashion and are found on the upper and lower part of the garment. Vary in size from miniatures up to approx. 1.5 m. x 80 cm.

Bags—Recognized by their bright colors, they have an opening that is narrower than the body and a wide pouch with long fringe and handle. Vary in size from miniatures up to 30 cm. x 20 cm.

Panels—Some are made in cotton using the double-cloth technique, based on light brown and beige. Lines of geometrically-rendered llamas predominate. Vary in size from 20 cm. x 20 cm. to 2 m. x 1.8 m.

Mantles—Inca mantles are of standard dimensions, sometime more than a meter long, generally rectangular. They are multi-colored and made of cotton warp and wool weft. Most common colors are dark red, olive green, white, and black. Generally 2.5 m. x 1.6 m.

Kipu/quipu—Inca quipus (knotted string mnemonic devices) are made of cotton and wool cords, sometimes with the two fibers plied together. Rarely is their original color preserved, though sometime one sees light blues and browns. Some are wrapped with colorful threads on the ends of the cords. 80 cm. x 50 cm.

II. Pre-Columbian Metal Objects A. Idols

Anthropomorphic or zoomorphic figures, some of which are hollow and others which are solid. They may be of gold and silver, they may be gilded, or of copper, or bronze. Sizes vary from 2 cm.-20 cm. in height.

B. Small Plaques

Thin sheets of gold, silver, copper, or gilded copper, used to cover the body and made in pieces. They have repoussé or punched designs on the edge and middle of the sheet. Average .6 cm in height.

C. Axes

Almost always T-shaped and solid. There are also axes in a traditional axe head shape. May be of bronze or copper.

D. Mace Heads

These come in a great variety of shapes, including star-shaped, flat, or of two or three levels. They may be made of copper or bronze. Most have a central hole through which a wooden handle was affixed.

E. Musical Instruments

Trumpets: Wind instrument with a tubular body and flaring end, fastened at the joint. May be of copper or bronze.

Bells: Of varying shapes and materials (including gold, silver, copper, and silver-plated copper).

Conos: Instrument shaped from a sheet of hammered metal, with or without a clapper. Can be of copper or silver. Up to .5 m. in height.

Rattles: Musical instrument with a central hold to accommodate a handle. May be of copper or bronze. Vary from 6 cm.-25 cm. in height.

Jingle Bells: Spherical bells with an opening on the lower part and a handle on the upper part so they can be suspended from a sash or other garment. They contain a small stone or a little ball of metal. The handles may be decorated. Jingle bells may decorate another object, such as rhythm sticks, and may be of gold, silver, or bronze. Used in all pre-Columbian cultures of Peru.

Chalchachas: Instruments shaped like a bivalve with repoussé decoration. Made of copper.

Quenas (flutes): Tubular instruments, generally of silver, with perforations to vary the tone.

F. Knives

Knives vary depending on their provenance. They can have little or no decoration and can be of different metals or made of two metals. The best known are the tumis from the Sicán culture, which have a straight or trapezoidal handle and a half-moon blade. The solid handle may have carved or stamped designs. Generally made of gold, silver, or copper. In ceremonial examples, the blade and upper part may depict an anthropomorphic figure standing or seated, or simply a face or mask with an elaborate headdress, earspools, and inset semi-precious stones. Tumi handles can be triangular, rectangular, or trapezoidal, and blades can be ovaloid or shaped like a half-moon.

G. Pins

With a straight shaft and pointed end, pins can be flat or cylindrical in cross-section. Most are hammered, and some are hollow. They can be of gold, silver, copper, bronze, gold-plated silver or may be made of two metals. Some pins are zoomorphic; others have floral images, and still others depict fish. Some have a round head; others have a flat, circular head; still others have the shape of a half-moon. There are hollow-headed rattle pins; others have solid anthropomorphic images. Most are up to 50 cm. in length, with heads that are up to 10 cm. in diameter. The small pins are about 5 cm. in length.

H. Vessels

There are a variety of metal vessels; they may be made of gold, silver, gilded silver, gilded copper, silver-covered copper, and bronze. There are miniatures, as well as full-size vessels. Such vessels are known from all cultures. Forms include beakers, bowls, open plates, globular vessels, and stirrup-spout bottles. The exact form and surface decoration varies from culture to culture. Shapes include beakers, bowls, and plates. Average .5 m.-.3 m. in height.

I. [Reserved] J. Masks

May be made of gold, silver, gilded silver, copper, gilded copper, silver-covered copper, or may be made of two metals. They vary greatly in shape and design. The best known examples come from the following cultures: Moche, Sicán, Chimú, Huari, Inca, Nazca, and Chincha. The northern coast examples often have insets of shell, precious or semi-precious stones, and may have plant resins to depict the eyes and teeth. Almost all examples that have not been cleaned have a surface coloring of red cinnabar. Examples from Sicán measure up to 49 cm. in width by 29 cm. in height. Miniature examples can measure 7 cm. x 5 cm. Miniature masks are also used as decorations on other objects. Copper examples generally show heavy oxidation.

K. Crowns

Thin or thick sheets of metal made to encircle the head. They may be of silver, gold, copper, gilded silver, silver-covered copper, or may be made of two metals. Some examples have a curved central part, and may be decorated with pieces of metal and real or artificial feathers that are attached with small clamps. Found in all cultures.

L. Penachos (Stylized Metal Feathers)

Stylized metal feathers used to decorate crowns. May be made of gold, silver, copper, or silver-covered copper.

M. Tocados (Headdresses)

Headdress ornaments which may be simple or complex. They may be made of one part, or may include many pieces. Found in all cultures. They may take the form of crowns, diadems, or small crowns. They may have two stylized feathers to decorate the crown and to hold it to the hair (especially the Chimú examples). Paracas examples generally have rayed appendages, with pierced disks suspended from the ends of the rays.

N. Turbans

Long pieces of cloth that are wrapped around the head. Metal ornaments may be sewn on turbans. Found in all cultures; the metal decorations and the cloth vary from culture to culture.

O. Spoons

Utilitarian object of gold, silver, or copper.

P. Lime Spatulas

Miniature spatula: A straight handle has a slightly spoon-shaped end. The handle may have an anthropomorphic figure. Made of gold, silver, or copper.

Q. Ear Spools

Ear spools are generally made of a large cylinder which fits through the earlobe and an even larger disk or decorative sheet on one side. The disk may be decorated with repoussé, stamped, or engraved designs, or may have inset stone or shell. May be made of gold, silver, copper, or made of two metals. Ear spools are found in all cultures. The largest measure up to 15 cm. height; typical diameter: 5 cm.-14 cm.

R. Nose Ornaments

Of varied shapes, nose ornaments can be as simple as a straight tube or as complex as a flat sheet with repoussé design. In the upper part, there are two points to attach the ornament to the septum. They may be of gold, silver, or copper or may be made of two metals.

S. Earrings

Decoration to be suspended from the earlobes.

T. Rings

Simple bands with or without designs. Some are two bands united by filigree spirals. Some have inset stones. May be of silver, gold, copper, or alloys.

U. Bracelets

Bracelets are made of sheets of metal with a straight or slightly trapezoidal shape, with stamped or repoussé designs. Some are simple, narrow bands. Found in all cultures and with varied designs. May be of gold, silver, bronze, or alloys of copper. Generally 4 cm.-14 cm. in width.

V. Necklaces

Necklaces are made of beads and/or small carved beads. May be of shell, bone, stone, gold, silver, copper, or bronze. The beads are of varied shapes. All beads have two lateral perforations to hold the cord.

W. Tweezers

Made in one piece, with two identical ends and a flexed central handle. They are of varied shapes, including triangular, trapezoidal, and ovaloid. The middle of the handle may have a hole so the tweezers can be suspended from a cord.

X. Feather Carrier

Conical objects with a pointed, hollow end, into which feathers, llama skin, or monkey tails are inserted and held in place with tar. They may be made of gold, silver, or gilded or silver-plated copper.

III. Pre-Columbian Ceramics A. Chavín

Date: 1200-200 B.C.

Characteristics

Decoration: A grey-black color. Incised, modeled, and high and low-relief are combined to work out designs in grays and browns. The surface may also juxtapose polishing and matte finish in different design zones.

Forms: Bottles, plates, and bowls.

Size: 5 cm.-30 cm.

Identifying: Characteristic traits of Cupisnique and Chavín ceramics include: Globular body with a flat base and stirrup spout; thick neck with an obvious and everted lip. Chavín style also includes long-necked bottles, bowls with flaring walls, and highly-polished relief-decorated surfaces.

Styles: Chavín influence is seen in Cupisnique, Chongoyape, Poemape, Tembladera, Patapo, and Chilete.

B. Vicús

Date: 900 B.C.-A.D. 500.

Characteristics

Decoration: Geometric designs in white on red, made using negative technique. There are also monochrome examples.

Forms: Anthropomorphic, zoomorphic and plant-shaped vessels. Some have a double body linked by a tube or common opening.

Size: 30 cm.-40 cm. tall.

C. Virú or Gallinazo Characteristics

Decoration: Negative technique over orange background.

Forms: Faced anthropomorphic and zoomorphic vessels, face bottles for daily use in dwellings, “cancheros” (type of pot without a neck and with a horn-shaped handle).

Size: Up to 15 cm. high.

Identifying: The surface is basically orange; the vessels have a truncated spout, an arched bridge (like a tube) as handle, and geometric symbols in negative technique (concentric circles, frets and wavy lines). When the vessels represent a face, the eyes are like “coffee beans,” applied on the surface and with a transverse cut.

D. Pucara

Date: 300 B.C.-300 A.D.

Characteristics

Decoration: Slip-painted and incised. Modeled elements include stylized felines and camelids, along with an anthropomorphic image characteristically depicted with a staff in each hand. Vessels are typically decorated in yellows, black, and white on the red background of the vessel. Designs are characteristically outlined by incision. There may be modeled decoration, such as feline heads, attached to the vessels.

Shapes: Tall bowls with annular ring bases predominate, along with vessels that depict anthropomorphic images.

Size: Bowls are up to 20 cm. in diameter and 20 cm. in height.

E. Paracas

Date: Developed around 200 B.C.

Characteristics

Vessels are typically incised, with post-fired resin painting on a black background.

Size: 10 cm.-15 cm. high.

F. Nazca

Date: A.D. 100-600.

Characteristics

Color: Typically very colorful, with a range of slips including cream, black, red, violet, orange, gray, all in a range of tones.

Slip: Background slip is generally cream or orange.

Shapes: Cups, bowls, beakers, plates, double-spout-and-bridge bottles, anthropomorphic figures, and musical instruments.

Decoration: Realistic drawings of fantastic creatures, including the “Flying God.” In late Nazca, bottles are broader and flatter and the designs are arrayed in broad bands. Typically have decorations of trophy heads, geometric motifs, and painted female faces.

Size: 5 cm.-20 cm.

G. Recuay

Date: A.D. 100-700.

Characteristics

Slip: Both positive and negative slip-painting is found, generally in colors of black, cream and red.

Shapes: Sculptural, especially ceremonial jars known as “Paccha” which have an elaborate outlet to serve a liquid.

Decoration: Usually show groups of religious or mythical personages.

Size: 20 cm.—35 cm. in height.

H. Pashash

Date: A.D. 1-600.

Characteristics

Decoration: Positive decoration in black, red, and orange on a creamy-white background. Some show negative painting.

Shapes: Anthropomorphic vessels, bottles in the form of snakes, bowls with annular base, and large vessels with lids.

Size: The anthropomorphic vessels are up to 20 cm. in height, serpent bottles are around 25 cm. wide x 10 cm. tall, and lidded vessels are more than 30 cm. in height.

Motifs: The decorations are rendered in positive or negative painting in zones that depict profile-face images of zoomorphic figures, serpents, or worms, seen from above and with trapezoidal heads.

I. Cajamarca

Date: A.D. 500-900.

Characteristics

Decoration: Pre-fired slip painting with geometric designs, including stepped triangles, circles, lines, dots, and rows of volutes. They may include stylized birds, felines, camelids, batrachians, and serpents. Spiral figures may include a step-fret motif in the base of the bowls.

Shapes: Pedestal base bowls, tripod bowls, bottles with annular ring base, goblets, spoons with modeled handles, bowls with carinated edges.

J. Moche

Date: A.D. 200-700.

Characteristics

Forms: Stirrup-spout vessels, vessels in the shape of humans, animals, or plants.

Colors: Generally red and white.

Manufacture: Often mold-made.

Size: 15 cm.-25 cm. in height.

Decoration: Wide range of images showing scenes of real life or mythical scenes depicting gods, warriors, and other images.

K. Tiahuanaco

Date: A.D. 200-700.

Characteristics

Decoration: Pre-fired slip painting on a highly polished surface. Background is generally a red-orange, with depictions of human, animal, and geometric images, generally outlined in black and white lines.

Shapes: Plates, cups, jars, beakers, open-backed incense burners on a flat base.

L. Lima

Date: A.D. 200-700.

Characteristics

Decoration: Pre-fired slip painting with interlocking fish and snake designs, geometric motifs, including zig-zags, lines, circles, and dots.

Shapes: Breast-shaped bottles, cups, plates, bowls, and cook pots.

Styles: Related to Playa Grande, Nievera, and Pachacamac styles.

M. Huari

Date: A.D. 500-1000.

Characteristics

Colors: Orange, cream, violet, white, black, and red.

Motifs: Anthropomorphic, zoomorphic, and plant shapes, both stylized and realistic. In Pachacamac style one finds vessels with a globular body and long, conical neck. In Atarco style, there is slip painting that retains Nazca motifs, especially in the full-body felines shown running.

Slip: Background slip is commonly cream, red, or black.

Styles: Related to Vinaque, Atarco, Pachacamac, Qosqopa, Robles Moqo, Conchopata, and Caquipampa styles.

Size: Most are around 25 cm. tall. Robles Moqo urns may be up to 1 m. in height.

N. Santa

Date: Derived from Huari style, around A.D. 800.

Characteristics

Decoration: Slip painted with figures and designs in black and white on a red background. There are also face-neck jars.

Shapes: Effigy vessels, face-neck jars, double-body vessels.

Sizes: 12 cm.-20 cm. tall.

Shapes: Jars have a globular body and face on the neck. The border may have black and white checkerboard. The body sometimes takes the shape of a stylized llama head. Common are white lines dotted with black. Double-body vessels generally have an anthropomorphic image on the front vessel, and a plain back vessel.

O. Chancay

Date: A.D. 1000-1300.

Characteristics

Treatment: Rubbed surface.

Slip: White or cream with black or dark brown designs.

Molds: Molds are commonly used, especially for the anthropomorphic figures called “cuchimilcos,” which represent naked male and female figures with short arms stretched to the sides.

Size: 3 cm.-1 m.

P. Ica-Chincha

Date: Began to be developed in A.D. 1200.

Characteristics

Decoration: Polychrome painting in black and white on red.

Designs: Geometric motifs combined with fish and birds.

Shapes: Bottles with globular bodies and tall necks and with flaring rims. Cups and pots.

Size: 5 cm.-30 cm. high.

Q. Chimú

Date: A.D. 900-1500.

Characteristics

Slip: Monochrome. Usually black or red.

Shapes: Varied shapes. Commonly made in molds. They may represent fish, birds, animals, fruit, people, and architectural forms. One sees globular bodies with a stirrup spout and a small bird or monkey at the base of the neck.

Size: Between 30 cm.-40 cm. in height.

R. Lambayeque

Date: A.D. 700-1100.

Characteristics

Color: Generally black; a few are cream with red decoration.

Shapes: Double spout and bridge vessels on a pedestal base are common. At the base of the spout one sees modeled heads and the bridge also often has modeled heads.

Size: 15 cm.-25 cm. in height.

S. Inca

Date: A.D. 1300-1500.

Characteristics

Decoration: Slip painted in black, red, white, yellow, and orange.

Designs: Geometric designs (rhomboids and triangles) and stylized bees, butterflies, and animals.

Sizes: 1 cm. to 1.5 m. in height.

IV. Pre-Columbian Lithics A. Chipped Stone: Projectile Points Paiján Type Points

Size: 8 cm.-18 cm.

Shape: Triangular or heart-shaped.

Color: Generally reddish, orange, or yellow. Can be made of quartz.

Leaf-Shaped Points

Size: 2.5 cm.-15 cm.

Shape: Leaf-shaped. Can be ovaloid or lanceolate.

Color: Generally bright reds, yellows, ochers, quartz crystals, milky whites, greens and blacks.

Paracas Type Points

Size: .3 cm.-25 cm.

Shape: Triangular and lanceolate. Show marks of pressure-flaking. Often they are broken.

Color: Generally black.

Chivateros-Type Blanks

Size: .8 cm.-18 cm.

Shape: Concave indentations on the surface from working.

Color: Greens, reds, and yellows.

B. Polished Stone

Bowl—Vessels of dark colored-stone, sometimes streaked. They have a highly polished, very smooth surface. Some show external carved decoration. Diameters range from 12 cm-55 cm.

Cups—Also vessels of dark-colored stone. Generally have flaring sides. Typical of the Late Horizon. They are highly polished and may have external carved designs or may be in the shape of heads. 18 cm.-28 cm. in height.

Conopas—Small vessels in the form of camelids with a hollow opening on the back. They are black to greenish-black and highly polished. .8 cm.-16 cm. in length.

Idols—Small anthropomorphic figurines, frequently found in Middle Horizon contexts. The almond-shaped eyes with tear-bands are characteristic of the style. Larger examples tend to be of lighter-colored stone while the smaller ones are of dark stones. 12 cm.-28 cm. in height.

Mace head—Varying shapes, most commonly are doughnut-shaped or star-shaped heads, generally associated with Late Intermediate Period and Inca cultures. Commonly black, gray, or white, .8 cm.-20 cm. in diameter.

Metal-working hammer—Elongated shapes, frequently with one flat surface; highly polished. Generally of dark-colored stone, 3 cm.-12 cm.

C. Carved Material

Tenon head—These heads have an anthropomorphic face, prominent lips, and enormous noses. Some, especially those carved of diorite, have snake-like traits. The carved surface is highly polished.

Tablets—with high-relief design. The upper surface has a patina. They range from 20 cm. to more than 1 m. in length.

V. Pre-Columbian Perishable Remains A. Wood

Keros (Beakers)—The most common form is a bell-shaped beaker with a flat base, though some have a pedestal like a goblet. Decoration varies with the period:

Pre-Inca: Very rare, they have straight sides and incised or high-relief decoration. Some have inset shells.

Inca: Generally they are incised with geometric designs on the entire exterior.

Colonial Inca: Lacquer painted on the exterior to depict scenes of daily life, nature, and war.

Staffs—Objects of ritual or ceremonial use made of a single piece of wood. They can be distinguished on the basis of two or three of the following traits:

On the lower third, the staff may have a metal decoration.

The body itself is cylindrical and of variable length.

The upper third may have decorations, including inset shell, stone, or metal. Some staffs function as rattles, and in these cases, the rattle is in the upper part.

Carvings—Worked blocks of wood, such as wooden columns (orcones) to support the roofs of houses: Chincha, Chimú, and Chancay cultures. Individuals may be depicted standing or seated on a pedestal. In the upper part there is a notch to support the beams, which generally has a face, sometimes painted, at the base of the notch. Their length varies, but they are generally at least a meter or more.

Box—Small lidded boxes, carved of two pieces of wood. Generally the outer surface of box and lid are carved in relief. Chimú-Inca cultures. They measure approximately 20 cm. x 10 cm.

Mirror—Wooden supports for a reflective surface of polished anthracite or pyrite. In some cases the upper part of backs of mirrors are worked in relief or have inset of shell. Moche culture.

Paddle and rudder—Large carvings made of a single piece of wood. Paddles have three parts: The blade and the handle (sometimes decorated), and an upper decorated part, which can have metal plaques or decorative painting. Rudders have two parts: The blade and a handle which may be carved in relief. Chincha culture. Paddles can be 2.30 m. in length and rudders are up to 1.4 m.

Utensils—Bowls and spoons made of wood decorated with zoomorphic or anthropomorphic motifs.

Musical instruments—Trumpets and whistles. Trumpets can be up to 1.2 m. long and are generally decorated on the upper third of the instrument. Whistles vary a great deal from the undecorated to those decorated with human forms. Moche, Huari, and Inca cultures.

B. Bone

Worked bone—Most interesting are Chavín pieces with incised decorations. The bones are generally the long bones of mammals. They vary from 10 cm.-25 cm. in length.

Balance weights—Flat rectangles of bone about 10 cm. in length. Chincha culture.

Musical instruments—Quenas (flutes) and antaras (panpipes) in various shapes. Paracas, Chincha, and Ancon cultures.

C. Gourds

Vessels—Bowls, pots, and holders for lime (for coca chewing). Most interesting are those which are carved or pyroengraved. Produced from the Preceramic onward.

Musical instruments—Ocarinas, small flutes, and whistles. Inca examples may have incised decoration, or decoration with cords and feathers.

D. Cane

Musical instruments—Flutes (especially in Chancay culture), panpipes, and whistles. Flutes are often pyroengraved. Panpipes can have one or two tiers of pipes, which may be lashed together with colored thread. Nazca culture.

E. Straw

Weaving baskets—Basketry over a cane armature, in the shape of a lidded box. Sometimes the basketry is made of several colors of fiber to work out geometric designs. Some still hold their original contents: Needles, spindle whorls, spindles, balls of thread, loose thread, etc. Chancay culture.

F. Shell

Musical instruments—Marine shells (Strombus galeatus, Malea ringens, etc.), some, especially those from the Formative Period, with incised decoration.

Jewelry—Small beads and charms worked of shell, chiefly Spondylus princeps, used mainly in necklaces and pectorals. Moche, Chimú, and Inca cultures.

VI. Pre-Columbian Human Remains

The human remains included in this listing demonstrate modifications of the remains due to ritualistic practices or other intentional treatment of the deceased.

A. Mummies

Peruvian mummies were formed by natural mummification due to the conditions of burial; they have generally not been eviscerated. Usually found in flexed position, with extremities tied together, resulting in a fetal position. In many cases the cords used to tie the body in this position are preserved.

B. Deformed Skulls

Many ancient Peruvian cultures practiced cranial deformation. Such skulls are easily recognized by their unnatural shapes.

C. Skulls Displaying Trepanation

Trepanation is an operation performed on a skull; the resulting cuts, easily visible on a bare skull, take various forms. Cuts may be less easily distinguished if skin and hair are present:

Principal Techniques

a. Straight cuts: These cuts are pointed at the ends and wider in the center. Openings made this way have a polygonal shape.

b. Cylindrical-conical openings: The openings form a discontinuous line. The resulting opening has a serrated edge.

c. Circular: Generally made by a file. The resulting hole is round or elliptical, with beveled or straight edges. This is the most common form of trepanation.

D. Pre-Columbian Trophy Heads

Trophy heads can be identified by the hole made in the forehead to accommodate a carrying cord. When the skin is intact, the eyes and the mouth are held shut with cactus thorns. Finally, the occiput is missing since that is how the brain was removed when the trophy head was prepared.

E. Shrunken Trophy Heads From the Amazon

These heads have had the bones removed and then have been cured to shrink them. They are recognizable because they conserve all the traits of the original skin, including hair and hair follicles. The mouth is sewn shut and generally there are carrying cords attached. There may be an obvious seam to repair the cuts made when the skin was removed from the skull. Finally, the skin is thick (up to 2.5 mm.) and has a dark color. Trophy heads vary between 9.5 cm. and 15.5 cm. in height.

F. Tattoos

Tattooing in pre-Columbian Peru was practiced mainly on the wrists. Most common are geometric designs, including bands of triangles and rhomboids of a bluish color.

G. False Shrunken Heads

False shrunken heads can be recognized because they are made of the skin of a mammal, with some of the fur left where the human hair would be. The skin is first smoked, then pressed into a mold to give it a face-like shape. The eyes, nose, mouth and ears are simple bumps without real holes. Further, the skin is very thin and yellowish in color. Often the “heads” have eyebrows and moustaches formed by leaving some of the animal hair, but these features are grotesque because they appear to grow upside down.

VII. Ethnological Objects

A. Objects directly related to the pre-Columbian past, whose pre-Columbian design and function are maintained with some Colonial modifications or additions in technique and/or iconography.

Colonial Indigenous Textiles

Predominant materials: Cotton and wool.

Description: These textiles are characterized by the cut of the cloth, with the four borders or selvages finished on the same loom. Clothes are untailored and made from smaller pieces of convenient sizes which were then sewn together. Colonial indigenous textiles of the period are differentiated from pre-Columbian textiles primarily by their decoration: Western motifs such as lions, heraldic emblems, and Spanish personages are incorporated into the designs; sometimes fibers distinct from cotton or wool (threads of silver, gold, and silk) are woven into the cloth; and the colors tend to be more vivid because the fabrics were made more recently. Another important characteristic of the clothing is the presence of tocapus or horizontal bands of small squares with anthropomorphic, zoomorphic, phytomorphic and geometric ideographs and designs. Characteristic textiles include:

Panels: Rectangular or square pieces of various sizes.

Anacus: Untailored woman's dress consisting of two or three long horizontal pieces of cloth sewn together that was wound around the body and held in place with “tupus” (pins).

Unku/Tunic: Man's shirt with an opening for the head. Sometimes has sleeves.

Lliclla/Shoulder Mantle: Rectangular piece of cloth that women put over their shoulders and held in place by a tupu; standard size: 40″ x 45″. Generally has a tripartite design based on contrasting panels that alternate bands with decoration and bands with solid colors.

Chumpi/Belt: A woven belt, generally using tapestry technique.

Tupus

Material: Silver, gilded silver, copper, bronze. May have inlays of precious or semi-precious stones.

Description: Tupus were used to hold in place llicllas and ancus. They are pins with a round or elliptical head, with piercing, repoussé, and incised decorations. The difference between pre-Columbian and ethnological tupus can be seen in the introduction of Western designs, for example bi-frontal eagles and heraldic motifs.

Keros

Material: Wood.

Description: The most common form is a beaker like cup with truncated base. After the Conquest, keros started to be decorated with pictorial scenes. The most frequently used techniques include incision, inlaying pigments in wood, and painting. Ideography includes geometric designs, figures under a rainbow (an Inca symbol), ceremonial rituals, scenes of war, and agricultural scenes. Sometimes are in the form of human or zoomorphic heads.

Cochas or Cocchas

Material: Ceramic.

Description: Ceremonial vessels with two or more concentric interior compartments which are linked. Often decorated with volutes representing reptiles.

Aribalos

Material: Ceramic.

Description: The post-Conquest aribalos have a flat base, often using a glaze for finishing, and the decoration includes Inca and Hispanic motifs.

Pacchas

Material: Stone, ceramic.

Description: One of the characteristics of pacchas is that they have a drain which is used to sprinkle an offering on the ground. They have pictorial or sculpted relief decorations symbolizing the benefits hoped for from the ritual.

B. Objects that were used for religious evangelism among indigenous peoples.

In Colonial paintings and sculptures Western religious themes were reinterpreted by indigenous and mestizo artists who added their own images and other characteristics to create a distinct iconography.

Specific types of objects used for religious evangelism during the Colonial period include the following:

Sculpture

Types of statues include:

A three-dimensional sculpted image: In the Peruvian Colonial period these were made of maguey (a soft wood) and occasionally of cedar or walnut.

Images made of a dough composed of sawdust, glue and plaster: After they are sculpted, figures are dressed with cloth dipped in plaster.

Images to be dressed: These are wooden frames resembling mannequins, with only the head and arms sculpted in wood (cedar or maguey). The images are dressed with embroidered clothes and jewelry. Frequently other elements were added, such as teeth and false eyelashes, wigs of real hair, eyes of colored glass, and palates made of glass.

Paintings

Catholic priests provided indigenous and mestizo artists with canvases and reproductions of Western works of art, which the artists then “interpreted” with their own images and other indigenous characteristics. These may include symbolically associating Christian religious figures with indigenous divinities, or rendering the figures with Andean facial characteristics or in traditional Andean costume. In addition, each church, convent, monastery, and town venerated an effigy of its patron or tutelar saint, some of them native to Peru.

Retables

Retables (retablos) are architectonic structures made of stone, wood, or other material that are placed behind the altar and include attached paintings, sculptures or other religious objects.

Liturgical Objects

Objects Used for Mass Ritual: Chalices, cibaries, candelabras, vials for christening or consecrated oil, reliquaries, vessels for wine and water, incense burners, patens, monstrances, pelicans and crucifixes. Made out of silver, gold or gilded silver, often inlaid with pearls or precious stones. Techniques: Casting, engraving, piercing, repoussé, filigree.

Fixtures for sculpted images: Areoles, crowns, scepters, halo, halos in the form of rays, and books carried by religious scholars and founders of religious orders.

Ecclesiastical vestments: Some ecclesiastical vestments were commissioned by indigenous individuals or communities for the celebrations of their patron saint and thus are part of the religious legacy of a particular town. In such cases, the vestment has the name of the donor and of the town or church as well as the date.

Votive Offerings: These are representations of miracles or favors received from a particular saint. They can be made of different materials, usually metal or wood, and come in a variety of forms according to the type of favor received, usually representing parts of the human body in reference to the organ healed or agricultural products in recognition of a good harvest or increase in a herd.

C. Colonial Manuscripts and Documents

Predominant materials: Paper, parchment, vellum

Description: Original handwritten texts or printed texts of limited circulation dating to the Colonial period (AD 1532-1821). These include but are not limited to notary documents (wills, bill of sales, contracts), ecclesiastical materials, and documents of the city councils, Governorate of New Castile, the Governorate of New Toledo, the Vice Royalty of Peru, the Real Audiencia and Chancery of Lima, or the Council of the Indies. These can include books, single folios, or collections of related documents bound with string. Documents may contain a seal or ink stamp denoting a public or ecclesiastical institution. Because many of these documents are of institutional or official nature, they may have multiple signatures, denoting scribes, witnesses, and other authorities. Documents are generally written in Spanish, but may be composed in an indigenous language such as Quechua or Aymara.

The restrictions on the importation of these archaeological and ethnological materials from Peru are to continue in effect through June 9, 2022. Importation of such material continues to be restricted unless the conditions set forth in 19 U.S.C. 2606 and 19 CFR 12.104c are met.

Inapplicability of Notice and Delayed Effective Date

This amendment involves a foreign affairs function of the United States and is, therefore, being made without notice or public procedure (5 U.S.C. 553(a)(1)). For the same reasons, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3), a delayed effective date is not required.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

Because no notice of proposed rulemaking is required, the provisions of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) do not apply.

Executive Order 12866

Because this rule involves a foreign affairs function of the United States, it is not subject to Executive Order 12866.

Signing Authority

This regulation is being issued in accordance with 19 CFR 0.1(a)(1).

List of Subjects

Cultural property, Customs duties and inspection, Imports, Prohibited merchandise.

Amendment to CBP Regulations

For the reasons set forth above, part 12 of title 19 of the Code of Federal Regulations (19 CFR part 12), is amended as set forth below:

PART 12—SPECIAL CLASSES OF MERCHANDISE 1. The general authority citation for part 12 and the specific authority citation for § 12.104g continue to read as follows: Authority:

5 U.S.C. 301; 19 U.S.C. 66, 1202 (General Note 3(i), Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS)), 1624.

Sections 12.104 through 12.104i also issued under 19 U.S.C. 2612;

§ 12.104g [Amended]
2. In § 12.104g(a), the table of the list of agreements imposing import restrictions on described articles of cultural property of State Parties is amended in the entry for Peru by removing the words “T.D. 97-50 extended by CBP Dec. 12-11” and adding in their place “CBP Dec. 17-03” in the column headed “Decision No.”. Kevin K. McAleenan, Acting Commissioner, U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Approved: June 2, 2017. Timothy E. Skud, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Treasury.
[FR Doc. 2017-11841 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9111-14-P
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration 21 CFR Part 814 [Docket No. FDA-2017-N-0011] Humanitarian Use Devices; 21st Century Cures Act; Technical Amendment AGENCY:

Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

ACTION:

Final rule; technical amendment.

SUMMARY:

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is amending regulations to reflect changes recently enacted into law by the 21st Century Cures Act. Specifically, certain requirements related to humanitarian device exemptions (HDEs) and institutional review boards (IRBs) for devices have changed. This action is being taken to align the regulations with the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the FD&C Act) as amended.

DATES:

This rule is effective June 7, 2017.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Ian Ostermiller, Center for Devices and Radiological Health, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 66, Rm. 5515, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002, 301 796-5678.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

On December 13, 2016, the 21st Century Cures Act (Pub. L. 114-255) was signed into law, amending certain provisions of the FD&C Act. FDA is updating regulations to reflect some of those changes that are now in effect. Specifically, section 3052 of the 21st Century Cures Act amended section 520(m) of the FD&C Act to allow for HDE approval for devices that, among other things, treat or diagnose a disease or condition that affects “not more than 8,000” individuals in the United States; this threshold had been “fewer than 4,000” individuals in the United States (amending 21 U.S.C. 360j(m), passim). This final rule amends part 814 (21 CFR part 814) in several places to accurately reflect the threshold recently enacted into law.

In addition, section 3056 of the 21st Century Cures Act amended section 520 of the FD&C Act to remove the requirement for institutional review committees, i.e., IRBs, for devices to be “local”, (amending 21 U.S.C. 360j, passim). This final rule amends 21 CFR 814.124(a), “IRB approval”, to remove the term “local” and related language in order to accurately reflect the requirements recently enacted into law.

FDA finds good cause for issuing this amendment as a final rule without notice and comment because this amendment only updates the implementing regulation to restate the statute in light of amendments recently enacted into law (see 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B), relating to notice and comment procedures): “[W]hen regulations merely restate the statute they implement, notice-and-comment procedures are unnecessary”. Gray Panthers Advocacy Committee v. Sullivan, 936 F.2d 1284, 1291 (D.C. Cir. 1991); see also Komjathy v. Nat. Trans. Safety Bd., 832 F.2d 1294, 1296 (D.C. Cir. 1987) (when a rule “does no more than repeat, virtually verbatim, the statutory grant of authority”, notice-and-comment procedures are not required). Therefore, we are issuing these amendments as a final rule, and publication of this document constitutes final action on this change under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) (5 U.S.C. 553).

In addition, FDA finds good cause for these amendments to become effective on the date of publication of this action. The APA allows an effective date less than 30 days after publication as “provided by the agency for good cause found and published with the rule” (5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3)). A delayed effective date is unnecessary in this case because the new requirements are already effective as a matter of law. Furthermore, this rule does not establish additional regulatory obligations or impose additional burden on regulated entities. As a result, affected parties do not need time to prepare before the rule takes effect. Therefore, FDA finds good cause for these amendments to become effective on the date of publication of this action.

List of Subjects in 21 CFR Part 814

Administrative practice and procedure, Confidential business information, Medical devices, Medical research, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

Therefore, under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and under authority delegated to the Commissioner of Food and Drugs, 21 CFR part 814 is amended as follows:

PART 814—PREMARKET APPROVAL OF MEDICAL DEVICES

1. The authority citation for part 814 continues to read as follows:

Authority:

21 U.S.C. 351, 352, 353, 360, 360c-360j, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 379, 379e, 381.

§ 814.3 [Amended]
2. Amend § 814.3(n) by removing the words “fewer than 4,000” and adding in their place the words “not more than 8,000”.
§ 814.100 [Amended]
3. Amend § 814.100(b) introductory text by removing the words “fewer than 4,000” and adding in their place the words “not more than 8,000”.
§ 814.102 [Amended]
4. Amend § 814.102 as follows: a. In paragraph (a)(5), remove the words “fewer than 4,000” in both occurrences and add in their places the words “not more than 8,000” for both occurrences; b. In paragraph (b)(3)(i), remove the words “fewer than 4,000” and add in their place the words “not more than 8,000”; and c. In paragraph (b)(3)(ii), remove the words “4,000 or more” and add in their place the words “more than 8,000”. 5. In § 814.124, revise paragraph (a) to read as follows:
§ 814.124 Institutional Review Board requirements.

(a) IRB approval. The HDE holder is responsible for ensuring that a HUD approved under this subpart is administered only in facilities having oversight by an Institutional Review Board (IRB) constituted and acting pursuant to part 56 of this chapter, including continuing review of use of the device. In addition, a HUD may be administered only if such use has been approved by an IRB. If, however, a physician in an emergency situation determines that approval from an IRB cannot be obtained in time to prevent serious harm or death to a patient, a HUD may be administered without prior approval by an IRB. In such an emergency situation, the physician shall, within 5 days after the use of the device, provide written notification to the chairman of the IRB of such use. Such written notification shall include the identification of the patient involved, the date on which the device was used, and the reason for the use.

§ 814.126 [Amended]
6. Amend § 814.126(b)(1)(iii) by removing the number “4,000” and adding in its place the number “8,000”. Dated: June 1, 2017. Anna K. Abram, Deputy Commissioner for Policy, Planning, Legislation, and Analysis.
[FR Doc. 2017-11816 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4164-01-P
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE Drug Enforcement Administration 21 CFR Part 1308 [Docket No. DEA-413] Schedules of Controlled Substances: Placement of Acetyl Fentanyl Into Schedule I AGENCY:

Drug Enforcement Administration, Department of Justice.

ACTION:

Final order.

SUMMARY:

With the issuance of this final order, the Administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration will maintain the placement of the substance acetyl fentanyl (N-(1-phenethylpiperidin-4-yl)-N-phenylacetamide), including its isomers, esters, ethers, salts, and salts of isomers, esters and ethers, in schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act. This scheduling action is pursuant to the Controlled Substances Act and is required in order for the United States to discharge its obligations under the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961. This action continues to impose the regulatory controls and administrative, civil, and criminal sanctions applicable to schedule I controlled substances on persons who handle (manufacture, distribute, import, export, engage in research or conduct instructional activities with, or possess), or propose to handle, acetyl fentanyl.

DATES:

Effective June 7, 2017.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Michael J. Lewis, Diversion Control Division, Drug Enforcement Administration; Mailing Address: 8701 Morrissette Drive, Springfield, Virginia 22152; Telephone: (202) 598-6812.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Legal Authority

Section 201(d)(1) of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) (21 U.S.C. 811(d)(1)) states that, if control of a substance is required “by United States obligations under international treaties, conventions, or protocols in effect on October 27, 1970, the Attorney General shall issue an order controlling such drug under the schedule he deems most appropriate to carry out such obligations, without regard to the findings required by [section 201(a) (21 U.S.C. 811 (a))] or section [202(b) (21 U.S.C. 812(b)) of the Act] and without regard to the procedures prescribed by [section 201(a) and (b) (21 U.S.C. 811(a) and (b))].” If a substance is added to one of the schedules of the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961, then, in accordance with article 3, paragraph 7 of the Convention, as a signatory Member State, the United States is obligated to control the substance under its national drug control legislation, the CSA. The Attorney General has delegated scheduling authority under 21 U.S.C. 811 to the Administrator of the DEA. 28 CFR 0.100.

Background

On May 17, 2016, the Secretary-General of the United Nations advised the Secretary of State of the United States, that during the 59th session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, acetyl fentanyl was added to schedule I of the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961. This letter was prompted by a decision at the 59th session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs in March 2016 to schedule acetyl fentanyl under schedule I of the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs. As a signatory Member State to the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, the United States is obligated to control acetyl fentanyl under its national drug control legislation, the CSA, in the schedule deemed most appropriate to carry out its international obligations. 21 U.S.C. 811(d)(1).

Acetyl Fentanyl

On July 17, 2015, acetyl fentanyl was temporarily placed in schedule I of the CSA in order to avoid an imminent hazard to the public safety (80 FR 42381). Acetyl fentanyl is a potent opioid analgesic and has no accepted medical use in the United States. Since 2013, both law enforcement (DEA's NFLIS and STARLiMS databases) and public health reports demonstrate the unregulated use and distribution of this substance. Law enforcement reports indicate that acetyl fentanyl is available on the illicit market as a powder or in tablet form which mimic pharmaceutical opiate products. In powder form, the identity of the substance may go unknown to the end user as it may be marketed as heroin or mixed with heroin. Recent reports indicate that acetyl fentanyl is available over the Internet.

Acetyl fentanyl exhibits a typical morphine-like profile in animals. Data from the scientific literature show that the analgesic potency of acetyl fentanyl is up to 15.7 times greater than that of morphine in mice as evaluated using an acetic acid writhing method. Since 2013, adverse effects due to acetyl fentanyl toxicity have been reported in humans. Similar to other opioids (i.e. heroin, oxycodone, hydrocodone, fentanyl, etc.), acetyl fentanyl induces respiratory depression which may lead to death in an overdose event. DEA is currently aware of at least 57 confirmed fatalities associated with acetyl fentanyl misuse and/or abuse in the United States. The extent of abuse and mortality associated with acetyl fentanyl is likely to be underestimated since it is not included in most drug screens. In addition, the identity of fentanyl and acetyl fentanyl cannot be distinguished by commonly used drug screens including enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Further confirmatory testing (i.e. mass spectrometry) is required to identify acetyl fentanyl.

The DEA is not aware of any claims or any medical or scientific literature suggesting that acetyl fentanyl has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States. In addition, HHS advised the DEA, by letter dated April 29, 2015, that there are no approved new drug applications or investigational new drug applications for acetyl fentanyl.

By letter, dated January 11, 2016, the DEA requested that HHS conduct a scientific and medical evaluation of the substance's medical utility and a scheduling recommendation for acetyl fentanyl. Regardless of this request and any potential response from HHS, the DEA is not required under 21 U.S.C. 811(d)(1) to make any findings required by 21 U.S.C. 811(a) or 812(b), and is not required to follow the procedures prescribed by 21 U.S.C. 811(a) and (b). Therefore, consistent with the framework of 21 U.S.C. 811(d), DEA concludes that acetyl fentanyl has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States and is most appropriately placed (as it has been since July 2015) in schedule I of the CSA.

Conclusion

In order to meet the obligations of the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, 1961 and because acetyl fentanyl has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States, the Administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration has determined that this substance should remain in schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act.

Requirements for Handling

Acetyl fentanyl has been controlled as a schedule I controlled substance since July 17, 2015. With publication of this final order, acetyl fentanyl remains subject to the CSA's schedule I regulatory controls and administrative, civil, and criminal sanctions applicable to the manufacture, distribution, importation, exportation, engagement in research, and conduct of instructional activities with, and possession of schedule I controlled substances, including the following:

1. Registration. Any person who handles (manufactures, distributes, imports, exports, engages in research or conducts instructional activities with, or possesses), or who desires to handle, acetyl fentanyl must be registered with the DEA to conduct such activities pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 822, 823, 957, and 958 and in accordance with 21 CFR parts 1301 and 1312.

2. Disposal of stocks. Acetyl fentanyl must be disposed of in accordance with 21 CFR part 1317, in addition to all other applicable federal, state, local, and tribal laws.

3. Security. Acetyl fentanyl is subject to schedule I security requirements and must be handled and stored pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 821, 823, 871(b), and in accordance with 21 CFR 1301.71-1301.93.

4. Labeling and packaging. All labels, labeling, and packaging for commercial containers of acetyl fentanyl must be in compliance with 21 U.S.C. 825, 958(e), and be in accordance with 21 CFR part 1302.

5. Quota. A quota assigned pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 826 and in accordance with 21 CFR part 1303 is required in order to manufacture acetyl fentanyl.

6. Inventory. Every DEA registrant who possesses any quantity of acetyl fentanyl must keep an inventory of all stocks of this substance on hand pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 827 and 958, and in accordance with 21 CFR 1304.03, 1304.04, and 1304.11.

7. Records and Reports. Every DEA registrant must maintain records and submit reports with respect to acetyl fentanyl pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 827 and 958, and in accordance with 21 CFR parts 1304 and 1312.

8. Order Forms. All DEA registrants who distribute acetyl fentanyl must comply with order form requirements pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 828 and in accordance with 21 CFR part 1305.

9. Importation and Exportation. All importation and exportation of acetyl fentanyl must be in compliance with 21 U.S.C. 952, 953, 957, 958, and in accordance with 21 CFR part 1312.

10. Liability. Any activity involving acetyl fentanyl not authorized by, or in violation of the CSA, is unlawful, and may subject the person to administrative, civil, and/or criminal sanctions.

Regulatory Analyses Administrative Procedure Act

The CSA provides for an expedited scheduling action where control is required by the United States obligations under international treaties, conventions, or protocols. 21 U.S.C. 811(d)(1). If control is required pursuant to such international treaty, convention, or protocol, the Attorney General must issue an order controlling such drug under the schedule he deems most appropriate to carry out such obligations, without regard to the findings or procedures otherwise required for scheduling actions. Id.

To the extent that 21 U.S.C. 811(d)(1) directs that if control is required by the United States obligations under international treaties, conventions, or protocols in effect on October 27, 1970, scheduling actions shall be issued by order (as compared to scheduling pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 811(a) by rule), the DEA believes that the notice and comment requirements of section 553 of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), 5 U.S.C. 553, do not apply to this scheduling action. In the alternative, even if this action does constitute “rule making” under 5 U.S.C. 551(5), this action is exempt from the notice and comment requirements of 5 U.S.C. 553 pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 553(a)(1) as an action involving a foreign affairs function of the United States given that this action is being done in accordance with 21 U.S.C. 811(d)(1)'s requirement that such action be taken to comply with the United States obligations under the specified international agreements.

Executive Order 12866

This action is not a significant regulatory action as defined by Executive Order 12866 (Regulatory Planning and Review), section 3(f), and, accordingly, this action has not been reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

Executive Order 13132

This action does not have federalism implications warranting the application of Executive Order 13132. This action does 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. Therefore, in accordance with Executive Order 13132 (Federalism) it is determined that this action does not have sufficient federalism implications to warrant the preparation of a Federalism Assessment.

Executive Order 13175

This action does not have tribal implications warranting the application of Executive Order 13175. The action does not have substantial direct effects on one or more Indian tribes, on the relationship between the Federal government and Indian tribes, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities between the Federal government and Indian tribes.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) (5 U.S.C. 601-612) applies to rules that are subject to notice and comment under section 553(b) of the APA or any other law. As explained above, the CSA exempts this final order from notice and comment. Consequently, the RFA does not apply to this action.

Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

This action does not impose a new collection of information requirement under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. 44 U.S.C. 3501-3521. 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.

Congressional Review Act

This action is not a major rule as defined by section 804 of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996 (Congressional Review Act). However, the DEA has submitted a copy of this final order to both Houses of Congress and to the Comptroller General.

List of Subjects in 21 CFR Part 1308

Administrative practice and procedure, Drug traffic control, Narcotics, Prescription drugs.

For the reasons set out above, the DEA amends 21 CFR part 1308 as follows:

PART 1308—SCHEDULES OF CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES

1. The authority citation for part 1308 continues to read as follows:

Authority:

21 U.S.C. 811, 812, 871(b), 956(b), unless otherwise noted.

2. Amend § 1308.11 by: i. Redesignating paragraphs (b)(3) through (56) as (b)(4) through (57) and adding a new paragraph (b)(3); and ii. Removing paragraph (h)(4), redesignating paragraphs (h)(5) through (15) as (h)(4) through (14), and adding reserved paragraph (h)(15).

The addition reads as follows:

§ 1308.11 Schedule I.

(b) * * *

(3) Acetyl fentanyl (N-(1-phenethylpiperidin-4-yl)-N-phenylacetamide)—9821

Dated: May 30, 2017. Chuck Rosenberg, Acting Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2017-11795 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4410-09-P
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R09-OAR-2015-0399; FRL-9963-25-Region 9] Air Plan Approval; Nevada, Lake Tahoe; Second 10-Year Carbon Monoxide Limited Maintenance Plan AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking final action to approve revisions to the State of Nevada's (“State”) April 3, 2012 state implementation plan (SIP) submission and the State's August 26, 2016 supplement to their 2012 submittal. The State submitted these two SIP revisions for the Lake Tahoe, Nevada carbon monoxide (CO) area to address the Clean Air Act (CAA) requirement to submit by the eighth year of the first maintenance plan a second 10-year maintenance plan.

DATES:

This final rule is effective on July 7, 2017.

ADDRESSES:

The EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket ID Number EPA-R09-OAR-2015-0399. All documents in the docket are listed on the http://www.regulations.gov Web site. Although listed in the index, some information is not publicly available, e.g., confidential business information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such as copyrighted material, is not placed on the Internet and will be publicly available only in hard copy form. Publicly available docket materials are available through http://www.regulations.gov, or please contact the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section for additional availability information.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

John Kelly, EPA Region IX, (415) 947-4151, [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

On March 10, 2017 (82 FR 13235), the EPA published a direct final rule (DFR) approving two SIP revisions submitted by the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection. On April 3, 2012, the State submitted to the EPA a CO maintenance plan as a SIP revision. This 2012 maintenance plan was intended to meet the CAA requirement (see CAA section 175A(b)) to submit a second maintenance plan. The CAA requires that, in the eighth year of an area's first 10-year maintenance plan, a second maintenance plan be submitted covering an additional ten years beyond the first 10-year period. Subsequently, on August 26, 2016, the State submitted a supplement to their 2012 submittal.

In the March 10, 2017 DFR, the EPA also approved a surrogate monitoring method for the State to monitor ambient levels of CO in the area. This surrogate monitoring method was described in both the 2012 submittal and 2016 supplement, with the 2016 supplement containing the State's final intended method.

In the March 10, 2017 DFR, the EPA stated that if adverse comments were received by April 10, 2017, the EPA would publish a timely withdrawal and address the comments in a subsequent final rule based on the notice of proposed rulemaking (NPR), also published on March 10, 2017 (82 FR 13269).

In this instance, the EPA received an adverse comment on the alternative monitoring strategy and attempted to withdraw the DFR prior to the effective date of May 9, 2017. However, the EPA inadvertently did not withdraw the DFR prior to that date and the rule prematurely became effective on May 9, 2017, revising the State's SIP to include the 2012 submittal and 2016 supplement on that date.

In today's final rule, the EPA is responding to the comment submitted on the EPA's proposed approval of revisions to the State's SIP, is approving the 2012 SIP submittal and 2016 supplement into the SIP, and is amending the effective date of the regulations' inclusion in the SIP to correct our failure to withdraw the DFR (after the EPA received an adverse public comment) prior to the May 9, 2017 effective date of the DFR.

II. Summary of SIP Revision and the EPA's Analysis

As described in the DFR, the State's 2012 submittal was a limited maintenance plan (LMP). A LMP is appropriate for CO areas that are below 85 percent of the 8-hour CO national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS). The following are the key elements of a LMP for CO: Attainment inventory, maintenance demonstration, monitoring network, verification of continued attainment, contingency plan, and conformity determinations.1

1See DFR footnote 1 for a further discussion of LMP requirements (82 FR 13235, March 10, 2017).

The 2012 plan contains the following sections to address these elements: (1) An introductory section containing a general discussion of plan approvals for the area and its redesignation to attainment; (2) a maintenance plan section including subsections on monitoring data for the area, air quality trends and background on the State's intention to discontinue monitoring CO at the only remaining gaseous CO ambient monitor in the Lake Tahoe basin located at Harvey's Resort and Hotel in Stateline, Nevada (hereinafter, the ”Harvey's monitor”); (3) a section titled ”Verification of Continued Attainment” that addresses population change, traffic volumes, meteorology and the State's surrogate monitoring method; (4) contingency measures for the area; and (5) transportation conformity requirements.

The 2016 supplement revises several sections of the 2012 plan and contains an emissions inventory. The DFR describes our evaluation of the 2012 plan and 2016 supplement as they pertain to each of the required LMP elements.2 Although we approved the State's surrogate monitoring method in the DFR, we took no action on the State's monitor shutdown request and anticipate acting on the request in a separate action after we review the State's annual network plan and finalize this action.

2 In the DFR we also noted that for this area, the initial maintenance period extended through 2014 and that the second 10-year maintenance period therefore extends through 2024.

As described in the DFR, this action incorporates the 2012 plan, as amended by the 2016 supplement, and specific portions of the 2016 supplement itself, into the federally enforceable SIP. Together, these two submittals meet the applicable CAA requirements, and the EPA has determined they are sufficient to provide for maintenance of the CO NAAQS over the course of the second 10-year maintenance period through 2024.

III. Public Comment and the EPA's Response

The EPA received an adverse comment from an anonymous commenter (“commenter”) on March 14, 2017.3

3 We note that, although we did receive another comment (regarding “chemtrails”), we believe the comment is immaterial to the purpose of this action, and we are not addressing the comment in this action.

Comment Summary: The commenter noted their support for the EPA's action, stating that it would have a positive effect on the environment and would benefit the public. However, the commenter went on to comment adversely on the EPA's approval of the State's surrogate monitoring method, because monitoring methods are important to safeguard against a possible return of high levels of CO occurring in the region again, and the plan the EPA was approving did not offer any scenarios for reinstating monitoring.

Response: The EPA acknowledges the commenter's support. However, we disagree with some of the assertions and conclusions in the comment. First, the text the commenter quoted from our action was taken from the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). The text the commenter quoted was that monitoring may be discontinued if the monitor in question has not measured violations of the applicable NAAQS in the previous five years. This text is not something that the EPA was proposing to approve in our action, but rather is text from the existing CFR (40 CFR part 58), that, in a general sense, describes the circumstances that the EPA evaluates in determining whether to allow discontinuation of a monitor. We are not acting on a general policy regarding the circumstances under which ambient monitoring may be discontinued, nor are we acting on a specific instance of a monitor's discontinuation. Rather, we said in the DFR that we are not taking action on the State's request to shut down the Harvey's monitor, and that the EPA would respond to the State's request in a separate action. We are instead approving a surrogate monitoring method for the State to use in the area.

In addition, we believe the commenter is factually incorrect in stating that nothing is offered to reinstate ambient CO monitors “if CO were ever to plague the region again.” To the contrary, the EPA explained in the DFR the circumstances under which ambient monitoring would be re-started. The surrogate monitoring method is a method of monitoring that relies on indirect indicators (traffic counts) to be monitored during the entire second maintenance period, and that have in fact already commenced. The EPA has already received several years' worth of traffic count reports from the State. The surrogate monitoring method using traffic counts is an ongoing effort of the State, performed at two locations in the area. Further, if the traffic counts rise above trigger levels, the State will re-start ambient monitoring. Lastly, once ambient monitoring is triggered, specific stringent conditions must be met to discontinue ambient CO monitoring. This will be the case even if the EPA, in a separate future action, approves the State's 2012 request to discontinue ambient CO monitoring. That is, even if the EPA approves the shutdown of the Harvey's ambient CO monitor per the State's 2012 request, a triggered re-start of the monitor (“triggered monitoring”) would set in motion specific requirements before triggered monitoring could be discontinued. Regardless of the status of ambient CO monitoring, the State's traffic counts at two locations remain in place and are required by today's action to be continued throughout the maintenance period, through the end of 2024. The commenter did not provide any data or rationale for why monitoring methods should be addressed further.

IV. Final Action

The EPA is approving revisions to the Nevada SIP. The revisions incorporate the 2012 maintenance plan and 2016 supplement. The EPA is also amending the effective date of the inclusion of these revisions to the State's SIP because the revisions were added to the SIP prematurely on May 9, 2017, when the EPA did not withdraw its DFR after receiving a comment on our approval of the State's two SIP submittals. This rule responds to the comment received, finalizes our approval and corrects the effective date for inclusion of the State's two submittals into the SIP.

V. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews A. General Requirements

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

In addition, this rule does not have tribal implications as specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000), because the SIP is not approved to apply in Indian country located in the State, and the EPA notes that it will not impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law.

B. Submission to Congress and the Comptroller General

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

C. Petitions for Judicial Review

Under section 307(b)(1) of the CAA, petitions for judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by August 7, 2017. Filing a petition for reconsideration by the Administrator of this final rule does not affect the finality of this action for the purposes of judicial review nor does it extend the time within which a petition for judicial review may be filed, and shall not postpone the effectiveness of such rule or action.

This action approving the revisions to the State of Nevada's SIP may not be challenged later in proceedings to enforce its requirements. (See section 307(b)(2).)

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

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

Dated: May 23, 2017. Alexis Strauss, Acting Regional Administrator, Region IX.

Chapter I, title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations is amended as follows:

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

42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

Subpart DD—Nevada 2. Section 52.1470, paragraph (e) is amended by adding, under the table heading “Air Quality Implementation Plan for the State of Nevada,” two entries “2012 Revision to the Nevada State Implementation Plan for Carbon Monoxide, April 2012” and “2016 Supplement to Nevada's 2nd 10-Year CO Limited Maintenance Plan at Lake Tahoe, August 26, 2016” after the entry “Addendum to the October 27, 2003 letter of transmittal of the redesignation request and maintenance plan,” to read as follows:
§ 52.1470 Identification of plan.

(e) * * *

EPA-Approved Nevada Nonregulatory Provisions and Quasi-Regulatory Measures Name of SIP provision Applicable geographic or
  • nonattainment area
  • State submittal date EPA approval date Explanation
    AIR QUALITY IMPLEMENTATION PLAN FOR THE STATE OF NEVADA 1 *         *         *         *         *         *         * 2012 Revision to the Nevada State Implementation Plan for Carbon Monoxide, April 2012 Nevada portion of Lake Tahoe Basin—portions of Carson City, Douglas and Washoe counties 4/3/2012 [INSERT Federal Register CITATION] (6/7/2017) Adopted on 4/3/2012. Approval excludes sections 3.2.4 and 4. With 2016 supplement, fulfills requirement for second ten-year maintenance plan. 2016 Supplement to Nevada's 2nd 10-Year CO Limited Maintenance Plan at Lake Tahoe, August 26, 2016 Nevada portion of Lake Tahoe Basin—portions of Carson City, Douglas and Washoe counties 8/26/2016 [INSERT Federal Register CITATION] (6/7/2017) Adopted on 8/26/2016. Approval includes revised sections 3.2.4 and 4 (alternative CO monitoring strategy and contingency plan), 2011 emissions inventory and 2024 projected emissions inventory (Attachment A), evidence of public participation (Attachment B) and revised table of contents for 2012 submittal (Attachment F). Excludes Attachments C, D and E. *         *         *         *         *         *         *     *         *         *         *         *         *         * 1 The organization of this table generally follows from the organization of the State of Nevada's original 1972 SIP, which was divided into 12 sections. Nonattainment and maintenance plans, among other types of plans, are listed under Section 5 (Control Strategy). Lead SIPs and Small Business Stationary Source Technical and Environmental Compliance Assistance SIPs are listed after Section 12 followed by nonregulatory or quasi-regulatory statutory provisions approved into the SIP. Regulatory statutory provisions are listed in 40 CFR 52.1470(c).
    [FR Doc. 2017-11699 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 80 [EPA-HQ-OAR-2016-0631; FRL-9963-54-OAR] Approval of Tennessee's Request To Relax the Federal Reid Vapor Pressure Gasoline Volatility Standard for Davidson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties; and Minor Technical Corrections for Federal Reid Vapor Pressure Gasoline Volatility Standards in Other Areas AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking final action to approve a request from the state of Tennessee for EPA to relax the Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) standard applicable to gasoline introduced into commerce from June 1 to September 15 of each year in Davidson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties (the Middle Tennessee Area). Specifically, EPA is approving amendments to the regulations to allow the gasoline RVP standard for the five counties to rise from 7.8 pounds per square inch (psi) to 9.0 psi. EPA has determined that this change to the federal RVP regulation is consistent with the applicable provisions of the Clean Air Act (CAA). Finally, EPA is making several minor technical corrections to address clerical errors made in prior rulemakings that relaxed the gasoline RVP standard in other areas.

    DATES:

    This final rule is effective on June 7, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2016-0631. All documents in the docket are listed on the www.regulations.gov Web site. Although listed in the index, some information may not be publicly available, e.g., Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such as copyrighted material, is not placed on the Internet and will be publicly available only in hard copy form. Publicly available docket materials are available electronically through www.regulations.gov.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    David Dickinson, Office of Transportation and Air Quality, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, DC 20460; telephone number: (202) 343-9256; email address: [email protected], or Rudolph Kapichak, Office of Transportation and Air Quality, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 2000 Traverwood Drive, Ann Arbor, MI 48105; telephone number: (734) 214-4574; email address: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The contents of this preamble are listed in the following outline:

    I. General Information II. Action Being Taken III. History of the Gasoline Volatility Requirement IV. EPA's Policy Regarding Relaxation of Gasoline Volatility Standards in Ozone Nonattainment Areas That Are Redesignated as Attainment Areas V. Tennessee's Request to Relax the Federal Gasoline RVP Requirement for Davidson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties VI. Response to Comments VII. Final Action VIII. Technical Corrections IX. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews X. Legal Authority and Statutory Provisions

    Effective date. Section 553(d) of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), 5 U.S.C. Chapter 5, generally provides that rules may not take effect earlier than 30 days after they are published in the Federal Register. EPA is issuing this final rule under CAA section 307(d)(1) which states: “The provisions of section 553 through 557 . . . of Title 5 shall not, except as expressly provided in this subsection, apply to actions to which this subsection applies.” Thus, section 553(d) of the APA does not apply to this rule. EPA is nevertheless acting consistently with the policies underlying APA section 553(d) in making this rule effective June 7, 2017. APA section 553(d) allows an effective date less than 30 days after publication for a rule “that grants or recognizes an exemption or relieves a restriction.” 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(1). This rule fits within that exception because it lifts a restriction on the introduction into commerce of gasoline with an RVP of greater than 7.8 psi sold in Davidson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties between June 1 and September 15 of each year. Because this action can be considered to relieve a restriction that would otherwise prevent the introduction into commerce of gasoline with an RVP of greater than 7.8 psi, EPA is making this action effective on June 7, 2017.

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

    Entities potentially affected by this rule are fuel producers and distributors who do business in the Middle Tennessee Area.

    Examples of potentially
  • regulated entities
  • NAICS 1 codes
    Petroleum refineries 324110 Gasoline Marketers and Distributors 424710
  • 424720
  • Gasoline Retail Stations 447110 Gasoline Transporters 484220
  • 484230
  • The above table is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather provides a guide for readers regarding entities likely to be regulated by this action. The table lists the types of entities of which EPA is aware that potentially could be affected by this rule. Other types of entities not listed on the table could also be affected by this rule. To determine whether your organization could be affected by this rule, you should carefully examine the regulations in 40 CFR 80.27. If you have questions regarding the applicability of this action to a particular entity, see the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this preamble.

    1 North American Industry Classification System.

    B. What is EPA's authority for taking this action?

    The statutory authority for this action is granted to EPA by Sections 211(h) and 301(a) of the CAA, as amended; 42 U.S.C. 7545(h) and 7601(a).

    II. Action Being Taken

    This final rule approves a request from the state of Tennessee to change the summertime gasoline RVP standard for Davidson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi by amending EPA's regulations at 40 CFR 80.27(a)(2). In a previous rulemaking, EPA approved a maintenance plan revision for the Middle Tennessee Area for the 1997 ozone national ambient air quality standard (NAAQS) and a CAA section 110(l) non-interference demonstration that relaxing the federal RVP gasoline requirement from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi for gasoline sold from June 1 to September 15 of each year would not interfere with maintenance of the NAAQS in the Middle Tennessee Area. For more information on EPA's approval of Tennessee's maintenance plan revision for the Middle Tennessee Area and the CAA section 110(l) non-interference demonstration, please refer to the May 1, 2017 rulemaking. (82 FR 20260).

    The preamble for this rulemaking is organized as follows: Section III. provides the history of the federal gasoline volatility regulation. Section IV. describes the policy regarding relaxation of volatility standards in ozone nonattainment areas that are redesignated as attainment areas. Section V. provides information specific to Tennessee's request for Davidson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties. Section VI. provides a response to the comments EPA received. Section VII. presents the final action in response to Tennessee's request. Finally, Section VIII. provides an explanation of the minor technical corrections being made to 40 CFR 80.27(a)(2)(ii).

    III. History of the Gasoline Volatility Requirement

    On August 19, 1987 (52 FR 31274), EPA determined that gasoline nationwide was becoming increasingly volatile, causing an increase in evaporative emissions from gasoline-powered vehicles and equipment. Evaporative emissions from gasoline, referred to as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), are precursors to the formation of tropospheric ozone and contribute to the nation's ground-level ozone problem. Exposure to ground-level ozone can reduce lung function, thereby aggravating asthma and other respiratory conditions, increase susceptibility to respiratory infection, and may contribute to premature death in people with heart and lung disease.

    The most common measure of fuel volatility that is useful in evaluating gasoline evaporative emissions is RVP. Under CAA section 211(c), EPA promulgated regulations on March 22, 1989 (54 FR 11868) that set maximum limits for the RVP of gasoline sold during the regulatory control periods that were established on a state-by-state basis in the final rule. The regulatory control periods addressed the portion of the year when peak ozone concentrations were expected. These regulations constituted Phase I of a two-phase nationwide program, which was designed to reduce the volatility of gasoline during the high ozone season. On June 11, 1990 (55 FR 23658), EPA promulgated more stringent volatility controls as Phase II of the volatility control program. These requirements established maximum gasoline RVP standards of 9.0 psi or 7.8 psi (depending on the state, the month, and the area's initial ozone attainment designation with respect to the 1-hour ozone NAAQS).

    The 1990 CAA Amendments established a new section 211(h) to address fuel volatility. CAA section 211(h) requires EPA to promulgate regulations making it unlawful to sell, offer for sale, dispense, supply, offer for supply, transport, or introduce into commerce gasoline with an RVP level in excess of 9.0 psi during the high ozone season. CAA section 211(h) also prohibits EPA from establishing a volatility standard more stringent than 9.0 psi in an attainment area, except that EPA may impose a lower (more stringent) standard in any former ozone nonattainment area redesignated to attainment.

    On December 12, 1991 (56 FR 64704), EPA modified the Phase II volatility regulations to be consistent with CAA section 211(h). The modified regulations prohibited the sale of gasoline with an RVP above 9.0 psi in all areas designated attainment for ozone, effective January 13, 1992. For areas designated as nonattainment, the regulations retained the original Phase II standards published on June 11, 1990 (55 FR 23658), which included the 7.8 psi ozone season limitation for certain areas. As stated in the preamble to the Phase II volatility controls and reiterated in the proposed change to the volatility standards published in 1991, EPA will rely on states to initiate changes to their respective volatility programs. EPA's policy for approving such changes is described below in Section IV. of this action.

    The state of Tennessee has initiated this change by requesting that EPA relax the 7.8 psi gasoline RVP standard to 9.0 psi for Davidson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties, which are subject to the 7.8 gasoline RVP requirement during the summertime ozone season. Accordingly, the state of Tennessee provided a technical demonstration showing that relaxing the federal gasoline RVP requirements in the five counties from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi would not interfere with maintenance of the NAAQS in the Middle Tennessee Area or with any other applicable CAA requirement. See Section V. of this action for information specific to Tennessee's request for the Middle Tennessee Area.

    IV. EPA's Policy Regarding Relaxation of Gasoline Volatility Standards in Ozone Nonattainment Areas That Are Redesignated as Attainment Areas

    As stated in the rulemaking for EPA's amended Phase II volatility standards (56 FR 64706), any change in the volatility standard for a nonattainment area that was subsequently redesignated as an attainment area must be accomplished through a separate rulemaking that revises the applicable standard for that area. Thus, for former 1-hour ozone nonattainment areas where EPA mandated a Phase II volatility standard of 7.8 psi RVP in the December 12, 1991 rulemaking, the federal 7.8 psi RVP gasoline requirement remains in effect, even after such an area is redesignated to attainment, until a separate rulemaking is completed that relaxes the federal RVP gasoline standard in that area from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi.

    As explained in the December 12, 1991 rulemaking, EPA believes that relaxation of an applicable gasoline RVP standard is best accomplished in conjunction with the redesignation process. In order for an ozone nonattainment area to be redesignated as an attainment area, CAA section 107(d)(3) requires the state to make a showing, pursuant to CAA section 175A(a), that the area is capable of maintaining attainment for the ozone NAAQS for ten years. Depending on the area's circumstances, this maintenance plan will either demonstrate that the area is capable of maintaining attainment for ten years without the more stringent gasoline volatility standard or that the more stringent gasoline volatility standard may be necessary for the area to maintain attainment of the ozone NAAQS. Therefore, in the context of a request for redesignation, EPA will not relax the gasoline volatility standard unless the state requests a relaxation and the maintenance plan demonstrates to the satisfaction of EPA that the area will maintain attainment for ten years without the need for the more stringent volatility standard.

    V. Tennessee's Request To Relax the Federal Gasoline RVP Requirement for Davidson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties

    On November 21, 2016, the state of Tennessee, through the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC), submitted a request to revise its CAA section 110(a)(1) maintenance plan for the 1997 ozone NAAQS for the Middle Tennessee Area. The revised maintenance plan adjusts the on-road emissions inventory and maintenance demonstration so that they account for removal of the federal requirement to sell 7.8 psi gasoline and instead sell gasoline with an RVP of 9.0 psi during the summer ozone season. As part of its request, TDEC also submitted a CAA section 110(l) non-interference demonstration that removal of the federal RVP requirement of 7.8 psi for gasoline during the summertime ozone season for the Middle Tennessee Area would not interfere with maintenance of any NAAQS, including the 1997 and 2015 ozone NAAQS. Specifically, the State provided a technical demonstration showing that relaxing the federal gasoline RVP requirement in the five counties, from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi, would not interfere with maintenance of the ozone NAAQS or with any other applicable requirement of the CAA.

    On February 24, 2017, EPA proposed to approve the revised maintenance plan and section 110(l) non-interference demonstration. The proposal provided an opportunity for the public to comment on the action. (82 FR 11517). EPA received no comments on the proposal to approve the revised maintenance plan request and the non-interference demonstration for the Middle Tennessee Area. In a May 1, 2017 final rule, EPA approved Tennessee's November 21, 2016 revised maintenance plan for the Middle Tennessee Area. (82 FR 20260). The revised CAA section 110(a)(1) maintenance plan provides for continued attainment and maintenance of the 1997 ozone NAAQS. In this final rule, EPA also approved Tennessee's non-interference demonstration for the Middle Tennessee Area.

    In today's action, EPA is taking the final step in the process to approve Tennessee's request to relax the summertime ozone season gasoline RVP standard for Davidson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi. Specifically, EPA is amending the applicable gasoline RVP standard from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi provided at 40 CFR 80.27(a)(2) for the five counties. This action is based on EPA's May 1, 2017 approval of Tennessee's November 21, 2016 revised maintenance plan request and the non-interference demonstration.

    EPA's proposal to amend the applicable gasoline RVP standard from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi (April 12, 2017, 82 FR 17597) was subject to public notice-and-comment. EPA received seven comments on its proposal. These comments are discussed in Section VI. below.

    Finally, EPA is approving this change to 40 CFR part 80 based on a request from the State and because EPA made a final determination in its May 1, 2017 final rule (82 FR 20260) that the State made an adequate demonstration to show that removal of this federal requirement would not interfere with air quality in the Middle Tennessee Area. Further, this final action is consistent with CAA requirements. Based upon these factors, EPA is approving Tennessee's request to relax the federal RVP gasoline requirements in the Middle Tennessee Area from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi.

    VI. Response to Comments

    EPA received seven comments on its April 12, 2017 proposal to relax the gasoline standard from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi. EPA believes that all of these comments are outside the scope of today's action as discussed further below.

    Comment: EPA received six comments that expressed a general concern that the relaxation of the RVP gasoline standard would result in a negative impact on air quality.

    Response: These comments, which are outside the scope of today's final rule, pertain to issues that have already been addressed in the May 1, 2017 rulemaking that evaluated the State's demonstration of potential air quality impacts of changing the summertime gasoline standard in the Middle Tennessee Area. (82 FR 20260). At proposal, EPA evaluated the impacts on air quality associated with the change in RVP requirements and determined that any such impacts will not interfere with attainment or maintenance of any NAAQS or with any other applicable requirement of the CAA as required by CAA section 110(l). (82 FR 11517, 11520-11522, February 24, 2017). EPA received no adverse comments on that proposal, which was subject to a 30-day notice and comment opportunity for the public. Further, in the April 12, 2017 proposal to this action, EPA did not reopen the May 1, 2017 rulemaking for public comments.

    Comment: EPA received another comment concerning the impact of the 1.0 psi RVP waiver that is provided to gasoline containing 10 percent ethanol.2 The commenter expressed several concerns with the 1.0 psi waiver, as well as a concern with the potential impacts of relaxing the summertime gasoline standard on the ability of the area to attain the 2015 ozone NAAQS. The commenter also asked for clarification of how Tennessee calculated emissions changes resulting from increasing the RVP of gasoline sold in the Area.

    2 See CAA section 211(h)(4).

    Response: The commenter's general concern with the national 1.0 psi waiver for gasoline containing 10 percent ethanol are beyond the scope of this rulemaking. Moreover, CAA section 211(h)(4) specifically allows the RVP limits for fuel blends containing gasoline and 10 percent ethanol to be 1.0 psi greater than the applicable regulatory RVP limits established in accordance with CAA section 211(h)(1). In this rulemaking, EPA is merely revising the summertime RVP limit for the Middle Tennessee Area pursuant to a request from the State, which the State supported with the demonstration that the area will continue to maintain the 1997 ozone NAAQS, and that the RVP increase will not interfere with the Area's ability to attain other NAAQS including the 2015 ozone NAAQS or interfere with any other CAA requirement.

    With regard to the possibility that the summertime gasoline RVP increase could jeopardize the area's ability to remain in attainment with the 2015 ozone NAAQS of 70 ppb, as previously explained, this comment is beyond the scope of this rulemaking. Further, as also previously explained, the proposal for the May 1, 2017 rulemaking contained an evaluation of the air quality impacts associated with the change in RVP requirements and determined that any such impacts will not interfere with attainment or maintenance of any NAAQS or with any other applicable requirement of the CAA as required by CAA section 110(l). Thus, EPA, in a prior rulemaking, which included extensive information and data from the State, such as the projection of the design values and the effect of slight increases in emissions associated with the RVP relaxation, has concluded that the Area would continue to attain any ozone NAAQS, including the 2015 ozone NAAQS, after the RVP relaxation. (82 FR 20260, May 1, 2017). In the February 24, 2017 proposal, EPA had also provided adequate opportunity for public comments on the CAA section 110(l) non-interference demonstration as well as the extensive information that supported the demonstration. No adverse comments were received on that proposal. The proposed notice for today's action did not re-open the previous rulemaking.

    Similarly, EPA believes that the comment on Tennessee's calculations of the emissions change due to the RVP relaxation is also beyond the scope of this rulemaking. As previously explained, EPA provided adequate opportunity for public comment on the previous rulemaking that approved the State's maintenance plan revision and CAA section 110(l) non-interference demonstration. (82 FR 20260, May 1, 2017). No adverse comments were received on the proposal for the May 1, 2017 rulemaking. Notwithstanding that this comment is outside of the scope of this rulemaking, Tennessee did properly quantify the emissions change attributed to the increase of the summertime RVP standard of 7.8 psi (effectively 8.8 psi with the 1.0 psi ethanol waiver) to 9.0 psi (effectively 10.0 psi with the 1.0 psi ethanol waiver). (82 FR 11517, 11520-11523, February 24, 2017). As noted above, the proposed notice for today's action did not re-open the previous rulemaking. Based on the evidence in the record, EPA is granting the State's request to relax the summertime RVP standard from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi.

    VII. Final Action

    EPA is taking final action to approve the request from Tennessee for EPA to relax the RVP applicable to gasoline introduced into commerce from June 1 to September 15 of each year in Davidson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties. Specifically, this action amends the applicable gasoline RVP standard from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi provided at 40 CFR 80.27(a)(2) for the Middle Tennessee Area.

    VIII. Technical Corrections

    We are taking this opportunity to make several minor technical corrections to 40 CFR 80.27(a)(2)(ii) in order to accurately reflect the regulatory changes to this subparagraph that occurred as the result of prior rulemakings. These prior rulemakings concerned the relaxation of the gasoline RVP standard in other areas of the country. The changes are specified in the following paragraph. These corrections have no effect on the stringency or applicability of the regulations.3

    3 40 CFR 80.27(a)(2)(ii) had not accurately reflected that the North Carolina entry in the table also included footnotes 6 and 9. As a result of today's rulemaking, the table will include the addition of Middle Tennessee and a new footnote 10 associated with it. The footnotes below the table were also inaccurate in that incorrect counties or areas were associated with the wrong footnote numbers. Therefore, the preexisting language in footnote 6 is retained but is renumbered as footnote 8. Similarly, the preexisting language in footnote 7 is retained but is renumbered as footnote 9. The correct version of footnotes 6 and 7 were not included in the preexisting language and thus new footnotes 6 and 7 are added in this final rule.

    The amendments are as follows:

    1. In 40 CFR 80.27(a)(2)(ii), the table is amended by:

    a. Adding footnote numbers 6 and 9 in the table for North Carolina;

    b. Adding the “Middle Tennessee Area” in the table for Tennessee and adding footnote number 10 next to it;

    2. In 40 CFR 80.27(a)(2)(ii), the footnotes below the table are amended by:

    a. Renumbering the existing footnote 6 below the table to a new footnote 8. Footnote 8 will read: “The standard for Jefferson and Shelby Counties from June 1 until September 15 in 1992 through July 2, 2015 was 7.8 psi.”;

    b. Renumbering the existing footnote 7 below the table to a new footnote 9. Footnote 9 will read: “The standard for Mecklenburg and Gaston Counties from June 1 until September 15 in 1992 through 2015 was 7.8 psi.”;

    c. Adding a new footnote 6 below the table. Footnote 6 will read: “The standard for Davidson, Forsyth and Guilford Counties and a portion of Davie County from June 1 until September 15 in 1992 through 2013 was 7.8 psi.”;

    d. Adding a new footnote 7 below the table. Footnote 7 will read: “The standard for Durham and Wake Counties, and a portion of Dutchville Township in Granville County from June 1 until September 15 in 1992 through 2013 was 7.8 psi.”

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

    This action is not a “significant regulatory action” under the terms of Executive Order 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) and is therefore not subject to review under Executive Orders 12866 and 13563. (76 FR 3821, January 21, 2011).

    B. Paperwork Reduction Act

    This action does not impose any new information collection burden under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq., and therefore is not subject to these requirements.

    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. In making this determination, the impact of concern is any significant adverse economic impact on small entities. An agency may certify that a rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities if the rule relieves regulatory burden, has no net burden or otherwise has a positive economic effect on the small entities subject to the rule. The small entities subject to the requirements of this action are refiners, importers or blenders of gasoline that choose to produce or import low RVP gasoline for sale in Tennessee and gasoline distributers and retail stations in Tennessee. This action relaxes the federal RVP standard for gasoline sold in Davidson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties during the summertime ozone season (June 1 to September 15 of each year) to allow the RVP for gasoline sold to rise from 7.8 psi to 9.0 psi. This rule does not impose any requirements or create impacts on small entities beyond those, if any, already required by or resulting from the CAA section 211(h) Volatility Control program. We have, therefore, concluded that this action will have no net regulatory burden for all directly regulated small entities.

    D. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA)

    This final rule does not contain an unfunded mandate of $100 million or more as described in the UMRA, 2 U.S.C. 1531-1538, and does not significantly or uniquely affect small governments. The action implements mandates that are specifically and explicitly set forth in CAA section 211(h) without the exercise of any policy discretion by EPA.

    E. Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)

    This action does not have federalism implications. It will not have substantial direct effects on the states, on the relationship between the national government and the states, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.

    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 final rule affects only those refiners, importers or blenders of gasoline that choose to produce or import low RVP gasoline for sale in the Middle Tennessee Area and gasoline distributers and retail stations in the Middle Tennessee Area. Thus, Executive Order 13175 does not apply to this action.

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

    The EPA interprets Executive Order 13045 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. EPA has no reason to believe that this action may disproportionately affect children since Tennessee has demonstrated that a relaxation of the gasoline RVP will not interfere with its attainment of the ozone NAAQS for the Middle Tennessee Area, or any other applicable CAA requirement.

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

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

    I. National Technology Transfer Advancement Act

    This action does not involve technical standards.

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

    EPA believes the human health or environmental risk addressed by this action will not have potential disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects on minority, low-income or indigenous populations because it does not affect the applicable ozone NAAQS which establish the level of protection provided to human health or the environment. This rule relaxes the applicable volatility standard of gasoline during the summer, possibly resulting in slightly higher mobile source emissions. However, the state of Tennessee's non-interference demonstration that this action will not interfere with maintenance of the ozone NAAQS in the Middle Tennessee Area, or with any other applicable CAA requirement. Therefore, disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects on minority or low-income populations are not an anticipated result. The results of this evaluation are described in Section V. of this final rule. A copy of Tennessee's November 21, 2016 SIP revision requesting that EPA relax the gasoline RVP standard, including the technical analysis demonstrating that the less stringent gasoline RVP in the Davidson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties would not interfere with continued maintenance of the 2008 ozone NAAQS, or with any other applicable CAA requirement, has been placed in the public docket for this action.

    K. Congressional Review Act (CRA)

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

    L. Petitions for Judicial Review

    Under section 307(b)(1) of the CAA, petitions for judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by July 7, 2017. Filing a petition for reconsideration by the Administrator of this final rule does not affect the finality of this action for the purposes of judicial review nor does it extend the time within which a petition for judicial review may be filed, and shall not postpone the effectiveness of such rule or action. This action may not be challenged later in proceedings to enforce its requirements. See CAA section 307(b)(2).

    X. Legal Authority and Statutory Provisions

    The statutory authority for this action is granted to EPA by CAA sections 211(h) and 301(a), as amended; 42 U.S.C. 7545(h) and 7601(a).

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 80

    Environmental protection, Administrative practice and procedures, Air pollution control, Fuel additives, Gasoline, Motor vehicle and motor vehicle engines, Motor vehicle pollution, Penalties, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    Dated: May 31, 2017. E. Scott Pruitt, Administrator.

    For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Environmental Protection Agency is amending 40 CFR part 80 as follows:

    PART 80—REGULATION OF FUELS AND FUEL ADDITIVES 1. The authority citation for part 80 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    42 U.S.C. 7414, 7521, 7542, 7545, and 7601(a).

    2. Section 80.27 is amended in the table in paragraph (a)(2)(ii) by: a. Revising the entries for North Carolina and Tennessee. b. Revising footnotes 6 and 7. c. Adding new footnotes 8, 9, and 10.

    The revisions and additions read as follows:

    § 80.27 Controls and prohibitions on gasoline volatility.

    (a) * * *

    (2) * * *

    (ii) * * *

    Applicable Standards 1 1992 and Subsequent Years State May June July August September *         *         *         *         *         *         * North Carolina 6 7 9 9.0 9.0 9.0 9.0 9.0 *         *         *         *         *         *         * Tennessee: Knox County 9.0 9.0 9.0 9.0 9.0 Middle Tennessee Area 10 9.0 9.0 9.0 9.0 9.0 All volatility nonattainment areas 9.0 7.8 7.8 7.8 7.8 *         *         *         *         *         *         * 1 Standards are expressed in pounds per square inch (psi).     *         *         *         *         *         *         * 6 The standard for Davidson, Forsyth and Guilford Counties and a portion of Davie County from June 1 until September 15 in 1992 through 2013 was 7.8 psi. 7 The standard for Durham and Wake Counties, and a portion of Dutchville Township in Granville County from June 1 until September 15 in 1992 through 2013 was 7.8 psi. 8 The standard for Jefferson and Shelby Counties from June 1 until September 15 in 1992 through July 2, 2015 was 7.8 psi. 9 The standard for Mecklenburg and Gaston Counties from June 1 until September 15 in 1992 through 2015 was 7.8 psi. 10 The standard for the Middle Tennessee Area (Davidson, Rutherford, Sumner, Williamson, and Wilson Counties) from June 1 until September 15 in 1992 through June 7, 2017 was 7.8 psi.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11700 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Railroad Administration 49 CFR Part 270 [Docket No. FRA-2011-0060, Notice No. 6] RIN 2130-AC31 System Safety Program AGENCY:

    Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), Department of Transportation.

    ACTION:

    Final rule; stay of regulations.

    SUMMARY:

    On August 12, 2016, FRA published a final rule requiring commuter and intercity passenger railroads to develop and implement a system safety program (SSP) to improve the safety of their operations. On February 10, 2017, FRA stayed the SSP final rule's requirements until March 21, 2017, and extended the stay until May 22, 2017 and then to June 5, 2017. This document extends that stay until December 4, 2017.

    DATES:

    Effective June 2, 2017, 49 CFR part 270 is stayed until December 4, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Matthew Navarrete, Trial Attorney, U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Railroad Administration, Office of Chief Counsel; telephone: 202-493-0138; email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On August 12, 2016, FRA published a final rule requiring commuter and intercity passenger railroads to develop and implement an SSP to improve the safety of their operations. See 81 FR 53850. On February 10, 2017, FRA stayed the SSP final rule's requirements until March 21, 2017 consistent with the new Administration's guidance issued January 20, 2017, intended to provide the Administration an adequate opportunity to review new and pending regulations. 82 FR 10443 (Feb. 13, 2017). To provide additional time for that review, FRA extended the stay until May 22, 2017 and then to June 5, 2017. 82 FR 14476 (Mar. 21, 2017) and 82 FR 23150 (May 22, 2017).

    The review includes petitions for reconsideration of the SSP final rule (Petitions).1 FRA will conduct some form of outreach with interested parties to inform its decisions on the issues raised in the Petitions. FRA will announce any outreach process by separate notice in the Federal Register. Accordingly, to allow time for potential outreach, and to complete review of the rule and the Petitions, FRA is extending the stay of the rule until December 4, 2017.

    1See SSP rulemaking docket for these petitions at: https://www.regulations.gov/docket?D=FRA-2011-0060.

    FRA's implementation of this action without opportunity for public comment is based on the good cause exceptions in 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) and 553(d)(3), in that seeking public comment on the stay is impracticable, unnecessary, and contrary to the public interest. The delay in the effective date until December 4, 2017, is necessary to continue the review of the rule and Petitions, including any potential outreach. Given the imminence of the effective date of the “System Safety Program” final rule, seeking prior public comment on this temporary delay would be impractical, as well as contrary to the public interest in the orderly promulgation and implementation of regulations.

    Authority:

    49 U.S.C. 20103, 20106-20107, 20118-20119, 20156, 21301, 21304, 21311; 28 U.S.C. 2461, note; and 49 CFR 1.89.

    Issued in Washington, DC, on June 1, 2017. Patrick T. Warren, Executive Director.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11727 Filed 6-2-17; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 4910-06-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION National Highway Traffic Safety Administration 49 CFR Parts 571 and 585 [Docket No. NHTSA-2016-0125] RIN 2126-AK93 Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards; Minimum Sound Requirements for Hybrid and Electric Vehicles AGENCY:

    National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Department of Transportation (DOT).

    ACTION:

    Final rule; delay of effective date.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with the Presidential directive as expressed in the memorandum of January 20, 2017, from the Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff, entitled “Regulatory Freeze Pending Review,” this action temporarily delays until September 5, 2017, the effective date of the final rule titled “Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards; Minimum Sound Requirements for Hybrid and Electric Vehicles,” initially scheduled to become effective on February 13, 2017.

    DATES:

    The effective date of the final rule published on December 14, 2016 (81 FR 90416), is delayed until September 5, 2017. The initial compliance date is September 1, 2018, with full phase in by September 1, 2019.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For legal issues, contact Thomas Healy, Office of Chief Counsel, at (202) 366-2992. For non-legal issues, contact Mike Pyne, Office of Rulemaking, at (202) 366-4171.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    NHTSA bases this action in part on the Presidential directive expressed in the memorandum of January 20, 2017, from the Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff, entitled “Regulatory Freeze Pending Review” (the January 20, 2017 memorandum). That memorandum directed the heads of Executive Departments and Agencies to temporarily postpone for 60 days from the date of the memorandum the effective dates of certain regulations that had been published in the Federal Register, but had not yet taken effect. Because the original effective date of the final rule published on December 14, 2016, fell within that 60-day window, the effective date of the rule was extended to March 21, 2017, in a final rule published on February 6, 2017 (82 FR 9368). The effective date was again extended to May 22, 2017, in a final rule published March 21, 2017 (82 FR 14477). The effective date was further extended until June 5, 2017, in a final rule published May 22, 2017 (82 FR 23150). Consistent with the memorandum of the Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff, and as stated in the February 6, 2017, final rule delaying the effective date, the Agency further delays the effective date of this regulation until September 5, 2017.

    This delay of the effective date of the final rule is also based on the need to allow additional time to respond to several petitions for reconsideration filed in response to the final rule. These responses will provide regulated entities with greater certainty as to the requirements of the Minimum Sound Requirements for Hybrid and Electric Vehicles final rule prior to the rule coming into effect. Delaying the effective date of the final rule to allow additional time to respond to these petitions for reconsideration is prudent in this instance because the petitions concern topics such as the date by which manufacturers are required to comply with the rule's requirements and the stringency of the requirements themselves, both of which impact manufacturers' compliance plans.

    The Agency's implementation of this action without opportunity for public comment is based on the good cause exceptions in 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) and 553(d)(3), in that seeking public comment is impracticable, unnecessary and contrary to the public interest. The delay in the effective date until September 5, 2017, is necessary to provide the opportunity for further review and consideration of this new regulation, consistent with the January 20, 2017 memorandum. Given the imminence of the effective date of the “Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards; Minimum Sound Requirements for Hybrid and Electric Vehicles” final rule, seeking prior public comment on this temporary delay would be impractical, as well as contrary to the public interest in the orderly promulgation and implementation of regulations.

    Authority:

    49 U.S.C. 322, 30111, 30115, 30117, and 30116; delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.95.

    Terry T. Shelton, Acting Executive Director.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11732 Filed 6-2-17; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 4910-59-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 217 [Docket No. 160830798-7517-02] RIN 0648-BG32 Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Waterfront Construction AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS, upon request from the U.S. Navy (Navy), issues these regulations pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) to govern the taking of marine mammals incidental to conducting waterfront construction at Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay, GA, over the course of five years (2017-2022). These regulations, which allow for the issuance of Letters of Authorization (LOA) for the incidental take of marine mammals during the described activities and specified timeframes, prescribe the permissible methods of taking and other means of effecting the least practicable adverse impact on marine mammal species or stocks and their habitat, and establish requirements pertaining to the monitoring and reporting of such taking.

    DATES:

    Effective from July 12, 2017, through July 11, 2022.

    ADDRESSES:

    A copy of Navy's application and supporting documents, as well as a list of the references cited in this document, may be obtained online at: www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental/construction.htm. In case of problems accessing these documents, please call the contact listed below (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT).

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ben Laws, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, (301) 427-8401.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Purpose and Need for Regulatory Action

    These regulations, issued under the authority of the MMPA (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.), establish a framework for authorizing the take of marine mammals incidental to the Navy's waterfront construction activities at Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay, GA (NSB Kings Bay). The Navy plans to repair (including direct repairs and repairs by component replacement) in-water structures at NSB Kings Bay, construct a new Transit Protection System Operational Support Facility, and extend the existing Layberth Pier in order to (1) address critical damage and mission and safety requirements, (2) limit further deterioration and increase the useful life of the structures, and (3) upgrade infrastructure to meet requirements of new submarine technology. Construction will include use of impact and vibratory pile driving, including installation and removal of steel, concrete, composite, and timber piles.

    We received an application from the Navy requesting five-year regulations and authorization to take bottlenose dolphins. Take is anticipated to occur by Level B harassment incidental to impact and vibratory pile installation and removal. The regulations are valid from 2017 to 2022. Please see the “Background” section below for definitions of harassment.

    Legal Authority for the Action

    Section 101(a)(5)(A) of the MMPA (16 U.S.C. 1371(a)(5)(A)) 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 for up to five years if, after notice and public comment, the agency makes certain findings and issues regulations that set forth permissible methods of taking pursuant to that activity, as well as monitoring and reporting requirements. Section 101(a)(5)(A) of the MMPA and the implementing regulations at 50 CFR part 216, subpart I provide the legal basis for issuing this final rule containing five-year regulations, and for any subsequent LOAs. As directed by this legal authority, this final rule contains mitigation, monitoring, and reporting requirements.

    Summary of Major Provisions Within the Final Rule

    Following is a summary of the major provisions of this final rule regarding Navy waterfront construction activities. We have determined that the Navy's adherence to the planned mitigation, monitoring, and reporting measures listed below will achieve the least practicable adverse impact on the affected marine mammals. These measures include:

    • Required monitoring of the waterfront construction areas to detect the presence of marine mammals before beginning construction activities.

    • Shutdown of construction activities under certain circumstances to avoid injury of marine mammals.

    • Soft start for impact pile driving to allow marine mammals the opportunity to leave the area prior to beginning impact pile driving at full power.

    Background

    Paragraphs 101(a)(5)(A) and (D) of the MMPA (16 U.S.C. 1371 (a)(5)(A) and (D)) direct the Secretary of Commerce to allow, upon request, the incidental, but not intentional, taking of small numbers of marine mammals by U.S. citizens who engage in a specified activity (other than commercial fishing) within a specified geographical region if certain findings are made and either regulations are issued or, if the taking is limited to harassment, a notice of a proposed authorization is provided to the public for review.

    An authorization for incidental takings shall be granted if NMFS finds that the taking will have a negligible impact on the species or stock(s), will not have an unmitigable adverse impact on the availability of the species or stock(s) for subsistence uses (where relevant), and if the permissible methods of taking and requirements pertaining to the mitigation, monitoring and reporting of such takings are set forth. NMFS has defined “negligible impact” in 50 CFR 216.103 as an impact resulting from the specified activity that cannot be reasonably expected to, and is not reasonably likely to, adversely affect the species or stock through effects on annual rates of recruitment or survival.

    Except with respect to certain activities not pertinent here, the MMPA defines “harassment” as: Any act of pursuit, torment, or annoyance which (i) has the potential to injure a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild (Level A harassment); or (ii) has the potential to disturb a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild by causing disruption of behavioral patterns, including, but not limited to, migration, breathing, nursing, breeding, feeding, or sheltering (Level B harassment).

    Summary of Request

    On January 19, 2016, we received an adequate and complete request from the Navy for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to waterfront construction activities. On February 17, 2016 (81 FR 8048), we published a notice of receipt of Navy's application in the Federal Register, requesting comments and information related to the request for 30 days. We did not receive any comments. The Navy provided a revised final draft incorporating minor revisions on March 17, 2017.

    The Navy plans to repair in-water structures at NSB Kings Bay, as well as to construct new facilities and modify existing facilities. These repairs, upgrades, and new construction would include use of impact and vibratory pile driving, including installation and removal of steel, concrete, composite, and timber piles. Hereafter (unless otherwise specified or detailed), we use the term “pile driving” to refer to both pile installation and pile removal. The use of both vibratory and impact pile driving is expected to produce underwater sound at levels that have the potential to result in behavioral harassment of marine mammals. Only the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus truncatus) is expected to be present. The regulations are valid for five years, from July 12, 2017, through July 11, 2022.

    Description of the Specified Activity

    Additional detail regarding the specified activity was provided in our Federal Register notice of proposed rulemaking (82 FR 684; January 3, 2017); please see that notice or the Navy's application for more information.

    Overview

    NSB Kings Bay is the Navy's east coast home port for ballistic missile nuclear submarines supporting the Trident II (D-5) missile. NSB Kings Bay manages, maintains, and operates Trident ballistic missile (SSBN) and guided missile (SSGN) submarines, Trident II D-5 and Tomahawk Land Attack Missiles and systems, and infrastructure and quality of life facilities and programs. In 2010, the Navy found that conditions of water-based support facilities varied widely from good to seriously deteriorated. Continuous monitoring of these conditions by Navy at NSB Kings Bay has confirmed the advanced deterioration and critical nature of some issues that pose operational and safety risks. Additionally, other areas of initial deterioration were identified which require remedy in order to maintain the useful life of existing structures. Damage observed includes deteriorated concrete piles, pile caps, and deck components (cracked, spalled, delaminated, exposed/corroded internal reinforcing steel structures); marine pest (marine wood borer) damage on wooden piles; broken or unmaintained mooring fittings; and corrosion on steel piles and pile caps. In some cases, it is more cost effective to demolish older structures that are deteriorated and not well configured to fit existing and upcoming assets and replace them with new structures that are specifically designed to meet new mission requirements.

    To ensure the Navy can continue its mission of supporting the Fleet Ballistic Missile System and Trident Submarine Program, the Navy plans to repair (including direct repairs and repairs by component replacement) in-water structures at NSB Kings Bay, construct a new Transit Protection System Operational Support Facility, and extend the existing Layberth Pier. These repairs, upgrades, and new construction will (1) address critical damage and mission and safety requirements, (2) limit further deterioration and increase the useful life of the structures, and (3) upgrade infrastructure to meet requirements of new submarine technology. Construction will include use of impact and vibratory pile driving, including installation and removal of steel, concrete, composite, and timber piles. The specified activity is comprised of six distinct projects, four of which are comprised of multiple smaller projects.

    Dates and Duration

    The specified activity may occur at any time during the five-year period of validity of the regulations. Planned dates of individual projects and project components are shown in Table 1, however, project dates may shift. In-water construction activities would occur during daylight hours, defined here as one hour post-sunrise to one hour prior to sunset.

    Specified Geographical Region

    NSB Kings Bay is located in southeastern Georgia, approximately four miles inland (straight line distance) from the Atlantic Ocean, and approximately eight miles north of the Georgia-Florida border, along the western shore of Cumberland Sound (see Figure 2-1 in the Navy's application). NSB Kings Bay is an approximately 16,000-acre installation including the land areas and adjacent water areas along Kings Bay and Cumberland Sound between Marianna Creek to the north and Mill Creek to the south, and is restricted from general public access.

    This estuarine environment receives salt water input from ocean waters through tidal exchange, and fresh water input from rivers, tributaries, and stormwater outfalls. The large tidal range and strong currents result in tidally mixed waters that are refreshed on a daily basis. Please see section 2 of the Navy's application for more information.

    Detailed Description of Activities

    The Navy plans to remove deteriorated timber, concrete, and steel piles and replace them with concrete, composite, and steel piles. New construction would involve installation of steel, concrete, and composite piles. Aspects of construction activities other than pile driving are not anticipated to have the potential to result in incidental take of marine mammals because they are either above water or do not produce levels of underwater sound with likely potential to result in marine mammal disturbance. Therefore, we do not discuss elements of construction activity other than pile driving. No concurrent pile driving would occur. Project specific pile totals are given in Table 1.

    A vibratory hammer will be used for all pile removal work. If use of the vibratory hammer is not feasible for pile installation (i.e., with steel piles), a Delmag Pile Hammer D62-22 or equivalent impact hammer will be used. The Delmag Pile Hammer D62-22 is a single acting diesel impact hammer with energy capacity of 76,899-153,799 foot-pounds. The most effective and efficient method of pile installation available will be implemented for each project. The method fitting these criteria may vary based on specific project requirements and local conditions. In some areas of Kings Bay a limestone layer can be found relatively close to the substrate/water interface. This type of layer requires impact driving because vibratory installation will not drive the piles to a sufficient depth. Impact driving, while generally producing higher levels of sound, also minimizes the net amount of active driving time, thus reducing the amount of time during which marine mammals may be exposed to noise. Impact or vibratory pile driving could occur on any day, but would not occur simultaneously.

    Table 1—Pile Driving Summary ID Project
  • start
  • (fiscal
  • year)
  • Water
  • depth
  • (ft)
  • Pile size
  • (in)
  • Pile type Total number Installed Removed Installation method Estimated
  • number
  • of strikes
  • per pile
  • Total
  • maximum
  • in-water
  • work days
  • 1A 2017 24 18
  • 24
  • 16
  • Concrete
  • Concrete
  • Timber
  • 148
  • 18
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 159
  • Impact
  • Impact
  • n/a
  • 60
  • 70
  • n/a
  • 30
  • 4
  • 31
  • 1B 2017 15 16
  • 16
  • Composite
  • Timber
  • 2
  • 0
  • 0
  • 2
  • Vibratory
  • n/a
  • n/a
  • n/a
  • 1
  • 1
  • 2 2017 46 14 Steel (H) 55 0 Impact 80 7 3A 2017
  • 2022
  • 46 24
  • 24
  • 24
  • Steel
  • Concrete
  • Steel
  • 2
  • 3
  • 10
  • 2
  • 3
  • 10
  • Impact
  • Impact
  • Impact
  • 70
  • 75
  • 70
  • 2
  • 2
  • 7
  • 3B 2021 46 14 Steel (H) 99 99 Impact 60 15 3C 2018 46 24
  • 30
  • Steel
  • Steel
  • 6
  • 0
  • 0
  • 6
  • Impact
  • n/a
  • 70
  • n/a
  • 1
  • 1
  • 3D 2017 46 24
  • 30
  • Steel
  • Steel
  • 6
  • 0
  • 0
  • 6
  • Impact
  • n/a
  • 70
  • n/a
  • 1
  • 1
  • 3E 2018 46 24
  • 30
  • Steel
  • Steel
  • 6
  • 0
  • 0
  • 6
  • Impact
  • n/a
  • 70
  • n/a
  • 1
  • 1
  • 3F 2021 46 30 Steel 8 8 Impact 70 4 3G 2022 30 14 Steel (H) 77 77 Impact 60 16 4A 2020 35 24
  • 18
  • 24
  • Concrete
  • Concrete
  • Concrete
  • 165
  • 50
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 121
  • Impact
  • Impact
  • n/a
  • 200
  • 80
  • n/a
  • 55
  • 17
  • 8
  • 4B 2020 35 24 Steel 30 30 Impact 100 8 5 2017 46 18
  • 16
  • Composite
  • Timber
  • 18
  • 0
  • 0
  • 18
  • Vibratory
  • n/a
  • n/a
  • n/a
  • 3
  • 3
  • 6A 2022 46 24 Concrete 0 649 n/a n/a 41 6B 2022 46 24 Concrete 0 121 n/a n/a 6

    Table 2 shows total piles planned for installation (I) and removal (R) by pile type and size in total and per year. Note that no pile driving is planned for fiscal year (FY) 2019. Below we provide further detail specific to individual projects and project components. For additional detail, please see section 1 of the Navy's application.

    Table 2—Pile Totals by Type and Year Pile type Size
  • (in)
  • FY2017 I R FY2018 I R FY2020 I R FY2021 I R FY2022 I R Totals I R
    Composite 16
  • 18
  • 2
  • 18
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 2
  • 18
  • 0
  • 0
  • Concrete 18
  • 24
  • 148
  • 18
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 50
  • 165
  • 0
  • 121
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 3
  • 0
  • 773
  • 198
  • 186
  • 0
  • 894
  • Steel (H) 14 55 0 0 0 0 0 99 99 77 77 231 176 Steel 24
  • 30
  • 8
  • 0
  • 2
  • 6
  • 12
  • 0
  • 0
  • 12
  • 30
  • 0
  • 30
  • 0
  • 0
  • 8
  • 0
  • 8
  • 10
  • 0
  • 10
  • 0
  • 60
  • 8
  • 42
  • 26
  • Timber 16 0 179 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 179 Totals 249 187 12 12 245 151 107 107 90 860 703 1,317
    Comments and Responses

    We published a notice of proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register on January 3, 2017 (82 FR 684). During the 30-day comment period, we received a letter from the Marine Mammal Commission (Commission) and comments from two private citizens. The comments and our responses are described below.

    Comment 1: The Commission recommends that we require the Navy to conduct source level measurements during vibratory driving of a representative number of 16-inch (in) composite piles in addition to the other pile types and methods proposed to be monitored.

    Response: We agree with the Commission's recommendation, and the Navy's monitoring plan has been revised accordingly.

    Comment 2: The Commission recommends that we require the Navy to conduct sound propagation measurements in addition to source level measurements during the various activities that would be monitored acoustically to refine the extent of the Level A and B harassment zones.

    Response: This was originally the intent of the acoustic monitoring plan, and the Navy's monitoring plan has been revised for clarity.

    Comment 3: The Commission recommends that we require the Navy to reallocate additional monitoring effort to the first two years of activities and ensure that monitoring occurs during a representative portion of the various pile sizes, types, and methods including during impact driving of steel pipe piles.

    Response: The Navy has clarified that impact and vibratory pile driving may occur interchangeably on any given day. Therefore, for example, although the description of Project 1A includes a maximum of 31 days of vibratory removal and 30 days of impact installation, these days would not likely be independent, and the much smaller disturbance zone for impact driving would be contained within the zone associated with vibratory driving. We have revised the monitoring plan to include monitoring of the disturbance on a portion of days associated with Project 2; with this addition, all projects other than 1B and the FY17 phase of Project 3A (each of which involves only two days of pile driving) incorporate some disturbance zone monitoring effort. We therefore believe that the monitoring plan achieves the goals expressed in the Commission's recommendation.

    Comment 4: A private citizen, while expressing support for the Navy's proposed waterfront construction activities, suggests that the length of the project may result in long-term avoidance and have permanent adverse effects on the Western North Atlantic South Carolina/Georgia Coastal Stock of bottlenose dolphins. The commenter recommends that the opportunity be used to fill gaps in research in order to provide insight regarding the human impact on marine mammals.

    Response: We appreciate the commenter's concern. While the best available information does not lead us to believe that long-term avoidance or permanent adverse effects to any potentially affected stocks of bottlenose dolphin are reasonably anticipated outcomes of the specified activity, NMFS's implementing regulations (50 CFR 216.104) do require that applicants for incidental take authorization propose the suggested means of monitoring and reporting that will result in increased knowledge of the species, and of the level of taking or impacts on populations of marine mammals. Please see “Monitoring and Reporting,” later in this document, for details of planned monitoring and reporting requirements.

    Comment 5: A private citizen states that protection of marine life is critical to maintaining balanced ecosystems and that mass stranding of marine life is undesirable.

    Response: We agree with the sentiments expressed by the commenter and issue this final rule in accordance with the requirements of the MMPA, which address the Congressional finding that marine mammal species and population stocks should not be permitted to diminish beyond the point at which they cease to be a significant functioning element in the ecosystem of which they are a part (16 U.S.C. 1361(2)). However, no mass stranding of marine life is anticipated to result from the specified activity, and no injury or mortality of marine mammals is anticipated or authorized.

    Description of Marine Mammals in the Area of the Specified Activity

    Only one species under NMFS's jurisdiction is considered to have the potential to co-occur with Navy activities: The bottlenose dolphin. However, multiple stocks of bottlenose dolphin have the potential to be present. The offshore stock of bottlenose dolphins is considered extralimital to the project area and is not discussed further in this document.

    Table 3 lists all species and stocks with expected potential for occurrence in the specified geographical region where Navy plans to conduct the specified activity, and summarizes information related to the population or stock, including potential biological removal (PBR). PBR, defined by the MMPA as the maximum number of animals, not including natural mortalities, that may be removed from a marine mammal stock while allowing that stock to reach or maintain its optimum sustainable population, is considered in concert with known sources of ongoing anthropogenic mortality (as described in NMFS's SARs).

    Table 3—Marine Mammals Potentially Present in the Vicinity of NSB Kings Bay Species Stock ESA/MMPA status;
  • strategic
  • (Y/N) 1
  • Stock abundance
  • (CV, Nmin, most recent
  • abundance survey) 2
  • PBR 3 Annual
  • M/SI 4
  • Relative occurrence
  • in Kings Bay;
  • season of occurrence 5
  • Superfamily Odontoceti (toothed whales, dolphins, and porpoises) Family Delphinidae Bottlenose dolphin Western North Atlantic Coastal, South Carolina/Georgia D; Y 4,377 (0.43; 3,097; 2009) 31 1.2-1.6 Likely; year-round. WNA Coastal, Northern Florida D; Y 1,219 (0.67; 730; 2009) 7 0.4 Rare; year-round. WNA Coastal, Southern Migratory D; Y 9,173 (0.46; 6,326; 2009) 63 0-12 Rare; January-March. Southern Georgia Estuarine System -; Y 194 (0.05; 185; 2009) 1.9 Unk Likely; year-round. Jacksonville Estuarine System -; Y Unknown Undetermined 1.2 Rare; year-round. 1 ESA status: Endangered (E), Threatened (T)/MMPA status: Depleted (D). A dash (-) indicates that the species is not listed under the ESA or designated as depleted under the MMPA. Under the MMPA, a strategic stock is one for which the level of direct human-caused mortality exceeds PBR (see footnote 3) or which is determined to be declining and likely to be listed under the ESA within the foreseeable future. 2 CV is coefficient of variation; Nmin is the minimum estimate of stock abundance. The most recent abundance survey that is reflected in the abundance estimate is presented; there may be more recent surveys that have not yet been incorporated into the estimate. 3 Potential biological removal, defined by the MMPA as the maximum number of animals, not including natural mortalities, that may be removed from a marine mammal stock while allowing that stock to reach or maintain its optimum sustainable population size (OSP). 4 These values, found in NMFS's SARs, represent annual levels of human-caused mortality plus serious injury from all sources combined (e.g., commercial fisheries, subsistence hunting, ship strike). Annual M/SI often cannot be determined precisely and is in some cases presented as a range. 5 The Navy considers “rare” to mean that there may be a few confirmed sightings or that the distribution of the stock is near enough to the area of interest that the species could occur there, and that overall the stock may occur but only infrequently or in small numbers. “Likely” is considered to mean that confirmed and regular sightings of the species occur year-round. Extralimital stocks are those that are considered unlikely to co-occur with the activity because the action area is outside the range of normal occurrence, but for which there may be some sighting or stranding records.

    We presented a detailed discussion of the status of these stocks and their occurrence in the action area in the notice of the proposed rulemaking (82 FR 684; January 3, 2017), and do not repeat the information here. Please see that document for more information. In summary, the southern Georgia estuarine system stock and the South Carolina/Georgia coastal stock are expected to be the two stocks most likely to be affected by the specified activity. Individual animals from the northern Florida and southern migratory (January to March only) coastal stocks and the Jacksonville estuarine system stock may also occur rarely.

    Potential Effects of the Specified Activity on Marine Mammals and Their Habitat

    We provided discussion of the potential effects of the specified activity on marine mammals and their habitat in our Federal Register notice of proposed rulemaking (January 3, 2017; 82 FR 684). Therefore, we do not reprint the information here but refer the reader to that document. That discussion included a summary and discussion of the ways that components of the specified activity may impact marine mammals and their habitat. The “Estimated Take” section later in this preamble includes a quantitative analysis of the number of incidents of take expected to occur incidental to this activity. The “Negligible Impact Analysis” section includes an analysis of how this specific activity will impact marine mammals, and considers the content of the discussion of potential effects to marine mammals and their habitat, the “Estimated Take” section, and the “Mitigation” section, to draw conclusions regarding the likely impacts of these activities on the reproductive success or survivorship of individuals, and from that on the affected marine mammal populations or stocks.

    Estimated Take

    Except with respect to certain activities not pertinent here, section 3(18) of the MMPA defines “harassment” as any act of pursuit, torment, or annoyance which (i) has the potential to injure a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild (Level A harassment); or (ii) has the potential to disturb a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild by causing disruption of behavioral patterns, including, but not limited to, migration, breathing, nursing, breeding, feeding, or sheltering (Level B harassment).

    Anticipated takes would be by Level B harassment, as pile driving activity has the potential to result in disruption of behavioral patterns for individual marine mammals. Level A harassment by auditory injury is unlikely to occur as a result of this activity for bottlenose dolphins (i.e., mid-frequency hearing specialists) and, although it is unlikely that take by Level A harassment would occur even in the absence of the planned mitigation and monitoring measures, the measures are expected to further minimize such potential. The Navy has requested authorization for the incidental taking by Level B harassment of bottlenose dolphins in the vicinity of NSB Kings Bay that may result from pile driving during waterfront construction activities described previously in this document.

    Sound Thresholds

    We provided discussion of relevant sound thresholds in our Federal Register notice of proposed rulemaking (January 3, 2017; 82 FR 684) and do not reprint the information here. Please see Table 4 for those criteria.

    Table 4—Acoustic Exposure Criteria Criterion Definition Threshold Level A harassment (mid-frequency cetaceans) Injury (onset PTS—any level above that which is known to cause TTS) 230 dB 1 (peak pressure) or 185 dB 2 (cumulative sound exposure level). Level B harassment Behavioral disruption 160 dB root mean square (rms) (impulse sources); 120 dB rms (non-impulsive, continuous sources). 1 Referenced to 1 μPa; unweighted within generalized hearing range. 2 Referenced to 1 μPa2s; weighted according to appropriate auditory weighting function.

    Based on consideration of NMFS's 2016 “Technical Guidance for Assessing the Effects of Anthropogenic Sound on Marine Mammal Hearing,” potential injury zones are fully encompassed by Navy's planned shutdown zones. Predicted isopleth distances for auditory injury (i.e., Level A harassment) were calculated for all construction scenarios (e.g., combinations of pile types, hammer types, and assumed number of piles driven per day or driving duration per day). This information was used with NMFS's optional user spreadsheet, a tool developed to help applicants implement the new Technical Guidance. For vibratory driving, predicted zones ranged from less than 1 m to 3.6 meters (m). For impact driving, predicted zone ranged from less than 1 m to 38 m. All zones were smaller than the Navy's proposed minimum shutdown zone of 15 m, except for impact driving of 24-in steel piles associated with project 4B in FY20 (16.6 m) and impact driving of 30-in steel piles associated with project 3F in FY 2021 (38 m). Shutdown zones associated with these projects would be increased to 20 m and 40 m, respectively, in order to encompass the predicted injury zones. In consideration of the small injury zones and the Navy's mitigation, we believe that injury will be avoided. We have considered the new guidance and believe that the likelihood of injury is adequately addressed in this analysis, and appropriate protective measures are in place in these regulations.

    Zones of Influence

    Sound Propagation—Pile driving generates underwater noise that can potentially result in disturbance to marine mammals in the project area. Transmission loss (TL) is the decrease in acoustic intensity as an acoustic pressure wave propagates out from a source. TL parameters vary with frequency, temperature, sea conditions, current, source and receiver depth, water depth, water chemistry, and bottom composition and topography. The general formula for underwater TL is:

    TL = B * log10(R1/R2), where, R1 = the distance of the modeled SPL from the driven pile, and R2 = the distance from the driven pile of the initial measurement.

    This formula neglects loss due to scattering and absorption, which is assumed to be zero here. The degree to which underwater sound propagates away from a sound source is dependent on a variety of factors, most notably the water bathymetry and presence or absence of reflective or absorptive conditions including in-water structures and sediments. Spherical spreading occurs in a perfectly unobstructed (free-field) environment not limited by depth or water surface, resulting in a 6 dB reduction in sound level for each doubling of distance from the source (20*log(range)). Cylindrical spreading occurs in an environment in which sound propagation is bounded by the water surface and sea bottom, resulting in a reduction of 3 decibels (dB) in sound level for each doubling of distance from the source (10*log(range)). As is common practice in coastal waters, here we assume practical spreading loss (4.5 dB reduction in sound level for each doubling of distance) here. Practical spreading is a compromise that is often used under conditions where water increases with depth as the receiver moves away from the shoreline, resulting in an expected propagation environment that would lie between spherical and cylindrical spreading loss conditions.

    Sound Source Levels and Behavioral Zones—The intensity of pile driving sounds is greatly influenced by factors such as the type of piles, hammers, and the physical environment in which the activity takes place. However, there are no measurements available from the specific environment of NSB Kings Bay. Numerous studies have examined sound pressure levels (SPLs) recorded from underwater pile driving projects in California and Washington, and the Navy has conducted a few studies on the east coast. In addition, the majority of studies are focused on steel pipe piles, with less data available for other pile types. In order to determine reasonable SPLs and their associated effects on marine mammals that are likely to result from pile driving at NSB Kings Bay, studies with similar properties to the specified activity were evaluated, and are displayed in Table 5. Where available, data from the east coast were prioritized due to the differences in bathymetry and sediment at west coast sites. For pile types for which data from the east coast were not available, averages of west coast data were used to approximate source levels. For fiberglass reinforced plastic composite piles, no measured data are available. The source level estimates for this type of pile were based on data from timber piles driven on the east coast of the U.S, assuming that this is the most similar pile material. In all cases, where data from the same pile size/type were not available, a more conservative proxy was used. Where appropriate, weighted project averages were considered. Values measured at distances greater than 10 m were normalized to 10 m before calculating averages. For full details of data considered, please see Appendix C of the Navy's application.

    Table 5—Summary of Proxy Measured Underwater Sound Pressure Levels [SPLs] Method Pile size and material Proxy Proxy source levels (dB at 10 m) rms pk SEL Vibratory 16″ timber; 16-18″ composite 12-16″ timber 1 161 n/a n/a Vibratory 18-24″ concrete 24″ steel pipe 2-5 166 n/a n/a Vibratory 14″ steel H 14″ steel H 6 163 n/a n/a Vibratory 24″ steel pipe 24″ steel pipe 2-5 166 n/a n/a Vibratory 30″ steel pipe 30″ steel pipe 7-9 166 n/a n/a Impact 18″ concrete 18″ concrete 4 170 184 159 Impact 24″ concrete 24″ concrete 1 6 174 184 165 Impact 14″ steel H 14″ steel H 4 178 196 168 Impact 24″ steel pipe 24″ steel pipe 4 10-11 190 206 179 Impact 30″ steel pipe 30″ steel pipe 4 8 10 12 193 209 188 Sources: 1 Illingworth & Rodkin, 2015; 2 Illingworth & Rodkin, 2010; 3 Illingworth & Rodkin, 2012; 4 Caltrans, 2012; 5 Illingworth & Rodkin, 2013b; 6 Illingworth & Rodkin, 2013a; 7 Laughlin, 2010a; 8 Laughlin, 2010b; 9 Laughlin, 2011; 10 Laughlin, 2005a; 11 Laughlin, 2005b; 12 MacGillivray and Racca, 2005.

    We consider the values presented in Table 5 to be representative of SPLs that may be produced by the specified activity. All calculated distances to and the total area encompassed by the marine mammal sound thresholds are provided in Table 6. Calculated radial distances to the 160 dB threshold assume a field free of obstruction. However, the waters surrounding NSB Kings Bay do not represent open water conditions and the calculated zone-specific areas take landforms into consideration. Actual zones are depicted in Figures 6-1 through 6-26 of the Navy's application. Although calculated radial distances to threshold do not change, the actual zone sizes may vary depending on the specific project location.

    Table 6—Distances to Relevant Sound Thresholds and Areas of Ensonification Distance to threshold (m) and associated area of ensonification (km2) Project Pile type 160 dB 120 dB 1A 16″ timber n/a n/a 5,412 3.69 1A 18″ concrete 46.4 0.01 n/a n/a 1A 24″ concrete 85.8 0.02 n/a n/a 1B 16″ timber/composite n/a n/a 5,412 3.12 2 14″ steel H 159 0.06 n/a n/a 3A (FY17) 24″ steel pipe 1,000 0.88 11,659 3.63 3A (FY22) 24″ concrete 85.8 0.02 11,659 3.63 3A (FY22) 24″ steel pipe 1,000 0.88 11,659 3.63 3B 14″ steel H 159 0.04 7,356 2.40 3C 24-30″ steel pipe 1,000 0.75 11,659 3.32 3D 24-30″ steel pipe 1,000 0.90 11,659 3.17 3E 24-30″ steel pipe 1,000 0.88 11,659 3.72 3F 30″ steel pipe 1,585 1.35 11,659 3.49 3G 14″ steel H 159 0.07 7,356 4.00 4A 18″ concrete 46.4 0.02 11,659 7.51 4A 24″ concrete 85.8 0.01 11,659 7.51 4B 24″ steel pipe 1,000 1.63 11,659 6.87 5 16″ timber/18″ composite n/a n/a 5,412 10.75 6A/6B 24″ concrete n/a n/a 11,659 9.34 Areas presented take into account attenuation and/or shadowing by land. Please see Figures 6-1 to 6-26 in the Navy's application. Marine Mammal Density

    The Navy conducted marine mammal surveys at NSB Kings Bay during 2006-2007 (McKee and Latusek, 2009). Transect lines were run in the waters around NSB Kings Bay during summer and fall 2006 and during winter and spring 2007. The survey area included estuarine waters extending from the mouth of the St. Marys River north through the Cumberland Sound to approximately eight nautical miles (nmi) inland along the Satilla River. The Crooked River and the Brickhill River, which flow into Cumberland Sound, were also part of the study area, though line transects were not possible in these locations, and census counts were substituted here. The geographic limits ranged from 30°40′ N. to 31°00′ N. and inland limits to 81°40′ W. Nearshore Atlantic waters were not included in the surveys.

    Observations were made with 7x50 power binoculars and with the naked eye, scanning from 0-90° relative to the vessel's line of travel. Sightings, radial distance and angle to animal, and number of individuals were recorded. For census count areas, the vessel was driven along the center line of the river and distance and angle to sightings were noted. Commercially available software (Distance 5.0) was used to analyze the collected data, including area surveyed, and calculate a seasonal density. Seasonal densities were combined to calculate an average annual density of 1.12 dolphins per square kilometer (km2).

    Incidental Take Calculation

    The species density described above (1.12 animals/km2) was multiplied by the activity-specific ZOIs shown in Table 6 to determine the estimated daily exposures. The Navy then rounded these daily exposure estimates to the nearest whole number before multiplying by activity-specific pile driving days, shown in Table 1, to yield the exposure estimates shown in Table 7. The Navy has requested authorization for a total of 881 incidents of Level B harassment of bottlenose dolphins over the five-year period of validity of these regulations. Table 7 displays the total take estimate broken out by project and year. However, note that year assignments reflect only the projected project start years. Projects may continue into succeeding years, but neither exact start dates nor whether a project would in fact continue into the succeeding year are known at this time.

    Table 7—Incidental Take Totals Year Project Impact Vibratory FY17 1A
  • 1B
  • 2
  • 3A
  • 3D
  • 5
  • 0
  • n/a
  • 0
  • 1
  • 1
  • n/a
  • 124
  • 6
  • n/a
  • 4
  • 4
  • 72
  • FY17 Totals n/a 2 210 212 FY18 3C
  • 3E
  • 1
  • 1
  • 4
  • 4
  • FY18 Totals n/a 2 8 10 FY19 n/a FY20 4A
  • 4B
  • 0
  • 8
  • 64
  • 32
  • FY20 Totals n/a 8 96 104 FY21 3B
  • 3F
  • 0
  • 4
  • 21
  • 8
  • FY21 Totals n/a 4 29 33 FY22 3A
  • 3G
  • 6A
  • 6B
  • 4
  • 0
  • n/a
  • n/a
  • 16
  • 32
  • 410
  • 60
  • FY22 Totals n/a 4 518 522 FY17-22 Totals n/a 20 861 881
    Analyses and Determinations Negligible Impact Analysis

    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. A negligible impact finding is based on the lack of likely adverse effects on annual rates of recruitment or survival (i.e., population-level effects). An estimate of the number of takes alone is not enough information on which to base an impact determination. In addition to considering estimates of the number of marine mammals that might be taken by mortality, serious injury, and Level A or Level B harassment, we consider other factors, such as the likely nature of any behavioral responses (e.g., intensity, duration), the context of any such responses (e.g., critical reproductive time or location, migration), as well as the number and nature of estimated Level A harassment takes (if any), and effects on habitat. We also assess the number, intensity, and context of estimated takes by evaluating this information relative to population status (i.e., the environmental baseline).

    Consistent with the 1989 preamble for NMFS's implementing regulations (54 FR 40338; September 29, 1989), the impacts from other past and ongoing anthropogenic activities are incorporated into these analyses via their impacts on the environmental baseline (e.g., as reflected in the regulatory status of the species, population size and growth rate where known, sources of human-caused mortality).

    Pile driving activities associated with the wharf construction projects, as described previously, have the potential to disturb or displace marine mammals. Specifically, the specified activities may result in take, in the form of Level B harassment (behavioral disturbance) only, from underwater sounds generated from pile driving. Potential takes could occur if individual bottlenose dolphins are present in the ensonified zone when pile driving is happening.

    No serious injury or mortality would be expected even in the absence of the planned mitigation measures. No Level A harassment is anticipated given the nature of the activities and measures designed to minimize the possibility of injury. The potential for injury is small, and is expected to be essentially eliminated through implementation of the planned mitigation measures—soft start (for impact driving) and shutdown zones. Impact driving, as compared with vibratory driving, has source characteristics (short, sharp pulses with higher peak levels and much sharper rise time to reach those peaks) that are potentially injurious or more likely to produce severe behavioral reactions. Given sufficient notice through use of soft start, marine mammals are expected to move away from a sound source that is annoying prior to its becoming potentially injurious or resulting in more severe behavioral reactions. Environmental conditions in waters surrounding NSB Kings Bay are expected to generally be good, with calm sea states, albeit with high turbidity. Nevertheless, we expect conditions would allow a high marine mammal detection capability, enabling a high rate of success in implementation of shutdowns to avoid injury.

    Effects on individuals that are taken by Level B harassment, on the basis of reports in the literature as well as monitoring from other similar activities, will likely be limited to reactions such as increased swimming speeds, increased surfacing time, or decreased foraging (if such activity were occurring) (e.g., Thorson and Reyff, 2006; HDR, Inc., 2012; Lerma, 2014). Most likely, individuals will simply move away from the sound source and be temporarily displaced from the areas of pile driving, although even this reaction has been observed primarily only in association with impact pile driving. The pile driving activities analyzed here are similar to, or less impactful than, numerous other construction activities conducted in San Francisco Bay and in the Puget Sound region, which have taken place with no known long-term adverse consequences from behavioral harassment.

    The Navy has conducted similar multi-year activities potentially affecting bottlenose dolphins in San Diego Bay and in the same general region at Mayport, Florida, that have similarly reported no apparently consequential behavioral reactions or long-term effects on bottlenose dolphin populations (Lerma, 2014; Navy, 2015). Repeated exposures of individuals to relatively low levels of sound outside of preferred habitat areas are unlikely to significantly disrupt critical behaviors. Thus, even repeated Level B harassment of some small subset of the overall stock is unlikely to result in any significant realized decrease in viability for the affected individuals, and thus would not result in any adverse impact to the stock as a whole. Level B harassment will be reduced to the level of least practicable adverse impact through use of mitigation measures described herein and, if sound produced by project activities is sufficiently disturbing, animals are likely to simply avoid the area while the activity is occurring. While vibratory driving associated with some project components may produce sound at distances of multiple kilometers from the pile driving site, thus intruding on higher-quality habitat, the project sites themselves and the majority of sound fields produced by the specified activities are within a heavily impacted, industrialized area. Therefore, we expect that animals annoyed by project sound would simply avoid the area and use more-preferred habitats.

    In summary, this negligible impact analysis is founded on the following factors: (1) The possibility of injury, serious injury, or mortality may reasonably be considered discountable; (2) the anticipated incidents of Level B harassment consist of, at worst, temporary modifications in behavior; (3) the absence of any significant habitat within the project area, including known areas or features of special significance for foraging or reproduction; and (4) the presumed efficacy of the planned mitigation measures in reducing the effects of the specified activity to the level of least practicable adverse impact. In addition, while some of the potentially affected stocks are considered depleted under the MMPA, it is unlikely that minor noise effects in a small, localized area would have any effect on the stocks' ability to recover. In combination, we believe that these factors, as well as the available body of evidence from other similar activities, demonstrate that the potential effects of the specified activities will have only minor, short-term effects on individuals. The specified activities are not expected to impact rates of recruitment or survival and will therefore not result in population-level impacts.

    Based on the analysis contained herein of the likely effects of the specified activity on marine mammals and their habitat, and taking into consideration the implementation of the planned monitoring and mitigation measures, we find that the total marine mammal take from the Navy's waterfront construction activities will have a negligible impact on the affected marine mammal species or stocks.

    Small Numbers Analysis

    Please see Table 7 for information relating to this small numbers analysis; as described previously, although we provide exposure estimates broken out by year and project component, we do not have specific information about when each project would be concluded or therefore how many takes may actually accrue in any given year during the five-year period of validity of these regulations. An average of 176 incidents of behavioral harassment of bottlenose dolphins is predicted to occur annually over the five-year effective period of these regulations; we have no information allowing us to parse the predicted incidents amongst the stocks of bottlenose dolphin that may occur in the project area. However, because they would be expected to occur only rarely and/or seasonally, we assume that only small numbers of individuals of the northern Florida coastal, southern migratory coastal, and Jacksonville estuarine system stocks would be potentially present and available to be taken as a result of the specified activities.

    The South Carolina/Georgia coastal and southern Georgia estuarine system (SGES) stocks are expected to potentially be present more regularly. For the South Carolina/Georgia coastal stock, the predicted annual average number of incidents of take to be authorized is considered small—approximately four percent—even if each estimated taking was of a new individual. This is an extremely unlikely scenario as, for bottlenose dolphins in estuarine and nearshore waters, there is likely to be some overlap in individuals present day-to-day.

    The total number of authorized takes for bottlenose dolphins, if assumed to accrue solely to unique individuals of the SGES stock, is higher relative to the total stock abundance, which is currently estimated at 194 individuals. As described previously, this estimate is the result of surveys covering only a portion of the stock range and is assumed to underestimate the stock abundance. Regardless, these numbers represent the estimated incidents of take, not the number of individuals taken. That is, it is highly likely that a relatively small subset of SGES bottlenose dolphins would be harassed by project activities. SGES bottlenose dolphins range from Cumberland Sound at the Georgia-Florida border north to the Altamaha Sound, Georgia, an area spanning approximately 70 linear km of coastline and including habitat consisting of complex inshore and estuarine waterways. SGES dolphins show strong site fidelity (Balmer et al., 2013), and it is likely that the majority of SGES dolphins would not occur within waters ensonified by project activities. In summary, SGES dolphins are known to exhibit strong site fidelity (i.e., individuals do not generally range throughout the recognized overall SGES stock range), and the specified activity will be stationary within a relatively enclosed industrial area not recognized as an area of any special significance that would serve to attract or aggregate dolphins. We therefore believe that the estimated numbers of take, were they to occur, likely represent repeated exposures of a much smaller number of bottlenose dolphins, and that these estimated incidents of take represent small numbers of bottlenose dolphins.

    Based on the analysis contained herein of the likely effects of the specified activity on marine mammals and their habitat, we find that small numbers of marine mammals will be taken relative to the populations of the affected species or stocks.

    Mitigation

    In order to issue an incidental take authorization under section 101(a)(5)(A) of the MMPA, NMFS must set forth the permissible methods of taking pursuant to such activity, “and other means of effecting the least practicable adverse impact on such species or stock and its habitat, paying particular attention to rookeries, mating grounds, and areas of similar significance, and on the availability of such species or stock for subsistence uses.” NMFS's implementing regulations require applicants for incidental take authorizations to include information about the availability and feasibility (economic and technological) of equipment, methods, and manner of conducting such activity or other means of effecting the least practicable adverse impact upon the affected species or stocks and their habitat (50 CFR 216.104(a)(11)).

    The mitigation strategies described below largely follow those required and successfully implemented under previous incidental take authorizations issued in association with similar construction activities. Measurements from similar pile driving events were coupled with practical spreading loss and other relevant information to estimate zones of influence (ZOI; see “Estimated Take” section); these ZOI values were used to develop mitigation measures for pile driving activities at NSB Kings Bay. Background discussion related to underwater sound concepts and terminology was provided in the section on “Description of Sound Sources,” in our Federal Register notice of proposed rulemaking (January 3, 2017; 82 FR 684, at 694-695). Practical spreading loss is discussed in further detail previously in this preamble in the section on “Zones of Influence.” The ZOIs effectively represent the mitigation zone that would be established around each pile to prevent Level A harassment to dolphins, while providing estimates of the areas within which Level B harassment might occur. In addition to the specific measures described later in this section, the Navy will conduct briefings for construction supervisors and crews, marine mammal monitoring team, and Navy staff prior to the start of all pile driving activity, and when new personnel join the work, in order to explain responsibilities, communication procedures, marine mammal monitoring protocol, and operational procedures. All relevant personnel will watch applicable sections of the Navy's Marine Species Awareness Training video. Relevant personnel will also follow NMFS's “Southeast Region Marine Mammal and Sea Turtle Viewing Guidelines,” which are described in Attachment 1 of Navy's Monitoring Plan.

    Monitoring and Shutdown for Pile Driving

    The following measures will apply to the Navy's mitigation through shutdown and disturbance zones:

    Shutdown Zone—The purpose of a shutdown zone is to define an area within which shutdown of activity would occur upon sighting of a marine mammal (or in anticipation of an animal entering the defined area), thus preventing some undesirable outcome, such as auditory injury or behavioral disturbance of sensitive species (serious injury or death are unlikely outcomes even in the absence of mitigation measures). For all pile driving activities, the Navy will establish a minimum shutdown zone with radial distance of 15 m. This minimum zone is intended to prevent the already unlikely possibility of physical interaction with construction equipment and to establish a precautionary minimum zone with regard to acoustic effects.

    As described previously in the “Estimated Take” section, we used NMFS's user spreadsheet, an optional companion spreadsheet associated with the alternative implementation methodology provided in Appendix D of NMFS's acoustic guidance (NMFS, 2016), to calculate project, pile type, and pile driving methodology-specific zones within which auditory injury (i.e., Level A harassment) could occur. The user spreadsheet is publicly available online at www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/acoustics/guidelines.htm. In using the spreadsheet, we assumed practical spreading loss and used supplementary information provided by the Navy regarding assumed number of piles driven per day and number of pile strikes necessary to install a pile (for impact pile driving) and daily duration of pile driving (for vibratory pile driving). Assumed source levels are provided in Table 5.

    In most cases, this minimum shutdown zone of 15 m is expected to contain the area in which auditory injury could occur. All predicted auditory injury zones are less than the minimum 15 m shutdown zone (radial distance range: 0.5-13.1 m), with the exception of impact driving of 30-in steel piles associated with Project 3F (radial distance of 38 m) and impact driving of 24-in steel piles associated with Project 4B (radial distance of 16.6 m). In all cases, predicted injury zones are calculated on the basis of cumulative sound exposure, as peak pressure source levels are below the injury threshold for mid-frequency cetaceans. For these two scenarios we require shutdown zones of 40 m and 20 m radial distance, respectively.

    Injury zone predictions generated using the optional user spreadsheet are precautionary due to a number of simplifying assumptions. For example, the spreadsheet tool assumes that marine mammals remain stationary during the activity and does not account for potential recovery between intermittent sounds. In addition, the tool incorporates the acoustic guidance's weighting functions through use of a single-frequency weighting factor adjustment intended to represent the signal's 95 percent frequency contour percentile (i.e., upper frequency below which 95 percent of total cumulative energy is contained; Charif et al., 2010). This will typically result in higher predicted exposures for broadband sounds, since only one frequency is being considered, compared to exposures associated with the ability to fully incorporate the guidance's weighting functions.

    Disturbance Zone—Disturbance zones are the areas in which SPLs equal or exceed 160 and 120 dB root mean square (rms) (for impulsive and non-impulsive, continuous sound, respectively). Disturbance zones provide utility for monitoring conducted for mitigation purposes (i.e., shutdown zone monitoring) by establishing monitoring protocols for areas adjacent to the shutdown zones. Monitoring of disturbance zones enables observers to be aware of and communicate the presence of marine mammals in the project area but outside the shutdown zone, and thus prepare for potential shutdowns of activity. However, the primary purpose of disturbance zone monitoring is for documenting incidents of Level B harassment; disturbance zone monitoring is discussed in greater detail later (see “Monitoring and Reporting”). Nominal radial distances for disturbance zones are shown in Table 6.

    In order to document observed incidents of harassment, monitors record all marine mammal observations, regardless of location. The observer's location and the location of the pile being driven are known, and the location of the animal may be estimated as a distance from the observer and then compared to the location from the pile. It may then be estimated whether the animal was exposed to sound levels constituting incidental harassment on the basis of predicted distances to relevant thresholds in post-processing of observational data, and a precise accounting of observed incidents of harassment created. This information may then be used to extrapolate observed takes to reach an approximate understanding of actual total takes, in cases where the entire zone was not monitored and/or all days of activity were not monitored.

    Monitoring Protocols—Monitoring would be conducted before, during, and after pile driving activities. In addition, observers will record all incidents of marine mammal occurrence, regardless of distance from activity, and monitors will document any behavioral reactions in concert with distance from piles being driven. Observations made outside the shutdown zone will not result in shutdown. That pile segment will be completed without cessation, unless the animal approaches or enters the shutdown zone, at which point all pile driving activities would be halted. Monitoring will take place from 15 minutes prior to initiation through 30 minutes post-completion of pile driving activities. Pile driving activities include the time to install or remove a single pile or series of piles, as long as the time elapsed between uses of the pile driving equipment is no more than thirty minutes. Observation of shutdown zones will always occur, but observation of the larger disturbance zones will occur on a subset of days associated with each specific project (see project-specific details provided in “Monitoring and Reporting,” later in this document). Please see the Monitoring Plan, developed by the Navy in agreement with NMFS, for full details of the monitoring protocols.

    The following additional measures apply to visual monitoring:

    (1) Monitoring will be conducted by designated observers, who will be placed at the best vantage point(s) practicable (as defined in the Monitoring Plan) to monitor for marine mammals and implement shutdown/delay procedures when applicable by calling for the shutdown to the hammer operator. Observers would have no other construction-related tasks while conducting monitoring. Observers should have the following minimum qualifications:

    • Visual acuity in both eyes (correction is permissible) sufficient for discernment of moving targets at the water's surface with ability to estimate target size and distance; use of binoculars may be necessary to correctly identify the target;

    • Ability to conduct field observations and collect data according to assigned protocols;

    • Experience or training in the field identification of bottlenose dolphins, including the identification of behaviors;

    • Sufficient training, orientation, or experience with the construction operation to provide for personal safety during observations;

    • Writing skills sufficient to document observations including, but not limited to: The number and species of marine mammals observed; dates and times when in-water construction activities were conducted; dates and times when in-water construction activities were suspended to avoid potential incidental injury of marine mammals from construction noise within a defined shutdown zone; and marine mammal behavior; and

    • Ability to communicate orally, by radio or in person, with project personnel to provide real-time information on marine mammals observed in the area as necessary.

    (2) Prior to the start of pile driving activity, the shutdown zone will be monitored for 15 minutes to ensure that it is clear of marine mammals. Pile driving will only commence once observers have declared the shutdown zone clear of marine mammals. Animals will be allowed to remain in the shutdown zone (i.e., must leave of their own volition), and their behavior will be monitored and documented. The shutdown zone may only be declared clear, and pile driving started, when the entire shutdown zone is visible (i.e., when not obscured by dark, rain, fog, etc.). In addition, if such conditions should arise during impact pile driving that is already underway, the activity would be halted.

    (3) If a marine mammal approaches or enters the shutdown zone during the course of pile driving operations, activity will be halted and delayed until either the animal has voluntarily left and been visually confirmed beyond the shutdown zone or fifteen minutes have passed without re-detection of the animal. Monitoring will be conducted throughout the time required to drive a pile and for thirty minutes following the conclusion of pile driving.

    Soft Start

    The use of a soft start procedure is believed to provide additional protection to marine mammals by warning marine mammals or providing them with a chance to leave the area prior to the hammer operating at full capacity, and typically involves a requirement to initiate sound from the hammer at reduced energy followed by a waiting period. This procedure is repeated two additional times. It is difficult to specify the reduction in energy for any given hammer because of variation across drivers and, for impact hammers, the actual number of strikes at reduced energy will vary because operating the hammer at less than full power results in “bouncing” of the hammer as it strikes the pile, resulting in multiple “strikes.” The Navy will utilize soft start techniques for impact pile driving. We require an initial set of three strikes from the impact hammer at reduced energy, followed by a 30-second waiting period, then 2 subsequent 3-strike sets. Soft start will be required at the beginning of each day's impact pile driving work and at any time following a cessation of impact pile driving of thirty minutes or longer; the requirement to implement soft start for impact driving is independent of whether vibratory driving has occurred within the prior 30 minutes.

    We have carefully evaluated the Navy's proposed mitigation measures and considered a range of other measures in the context of ensuring that we prescribed the means of effecting the least practicable adverse impact on the affected marine mammal species and stocks and their habitat. Our evaluation of potential measures included consideration of the following factors in relation to one another: (1) The manner in which, and the degree to which, the successful implementation of the measure is expected to minimize adverse impacts to marine mammals, (2) the proven or likely efficacy of the specific measure to minimize adverse impacts as planned; and (3) the practicability of the measure for applicant implementation.

    Any mitigation measure(s) we prescribe should be able to accomplish, have a reasonable likelihood of accomplishing (based on current science), or contribute to the accomplishment of one or more of the general goals listed below:

    (1) Avoidance or minimization of injury or death of marine mammals wherever possible (goals 2, 3, and 4 may contribute to this goal).

    (2) A reduction in the number (total number or number at biologically important time or location) of individual marine mammals exposed to stimuli expected to result in incidental take (this goal may contribute to 1, above, or to reducing takes by behavioral harassment only).

    (3) A reduction in the number (total number or number at a biologically important time or location) of times any individual marine mammal would be exposed to stimuli expected to result in incidental take (this goal may contribute to 1, above, or to reducing takes by behavioral harassment only).

    (4) A reduction in the intensity of exposure to stimuli expected to result in incidental take (this goal may contribute to 1, above, or to reducing the severity of behavioral harassment only).

    (5) Avoidance or minimization of adverse effects to marine mammal habitat, paying particular attention to the prey base, blockage or limitation of passage to or from biologically important areas, permanent destruction of habitat, or temporary disturbance of habitat during a biologically important time.

    (6) For monitoring directly related to mitigation, an increase in the probability of detecting marine mammals, thus allowing for more effective implementation of the mitigation.

    Based on our evaluation of these measures, we have determined that the planned mitigation measures provide the means of effecting the least practicable adverse impact on marine mammal species or stocks and their habitat, paying particular attention to rookeries, mating grounds, and areas of similar significance. Monitoring and Reporting

    In order to issue an incidental take authorization for an activity, section 101(a)(5)(A) of the MMPA states that NMFS must set forth requirements pertaining to the monitoring and reporting of such taking. The MMPA implementing regulations at 50 CFR 216.104 (a)(13) indicate that requests for incidental take authorizations must include the suggested means of accomplishing the necessary monitoring and reporting that will result in increased knowledge of the species and of the level of taking or impacts on populations of marine mammals that are expected to be present in the proposed action area.

    Any monitoring requirement we prescribe should improve our understanding of one or more of the following:

    • Occurrence of marine mammal species in action area (e.g., presence, abundance, distribution, density).

    • Nature, scope, or context of likely marine mammal exposure to potential stressors/impacts (individual or cumulative, acute or chronic), through better understanding of: (1) Action or environment (e.g., source characterization, propagation, ambient noise); (2) affected species (e.g., life history, dive patterns); (3) co-occurrence of marine mammal species with the action; or (4) biological or behavioral context of exposure (e.g., age, calving, or feeding areas).

    • Individual responses to acute stressors, or impacts of chronic exposures (behavioral or physiological).

    • How anticipated responses to stressors impact either: (1) Long-term fitness and survival of an individual; or (2) population, species, or stock.

    • Effects on marine mammal habitat and resultant impacts to marine mammals.

    • Mitigation and monitoring effectiveness.

    The Navy provided a separate Marine Mammal Monitoring Plan, which is available online at www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental/construction.htm.

    Visual Marine Mammal Observations

    The Navy will collect sighting data and behavioral responses to construction for marine mammal species observed in the region of activity during the period of activity. All observers will be trained in marine mammal identification and behaviors and are required to have no other construction-related tasks while conducting monitoring. The Navy would monitor all shutdown zones at all times, and would monitor disturbance zones during a varying subset of total project days. Disturbance zone monitoring effort during the first two years of project activities is expected to provide verification during the early stages of the project regarding assumed numbers of bottlenose dolphins present in the area. If compliance monitoring results suggest that the actual number of incidental take events may differ significantly from the number originally authorized, the Navy would consult with NMFS. The Navy will conduct monitoring before, during, and after pile driving, with observers located at the best practicable vantage points. Based on our requirements, the Navy will implement the following procedures for pile driving:

    • Marine mammal observers will be located at the best vantage point(s) in order to properly see the entire shutdown zone and as much of the disturbance zone as possible.

    • During all observation periods, observers will use binoculars and the naked eye to search continuously for marine mammals.

    • If the shutdown zones are obscured by fog or poor lighting conditions, pile driving at that location will not be initiated until that zone is visible. Should such conditions arise while impact driving is underway, the activity would be halted.

    • The shutdown zone around the pile will be monitored for the presence of marine mammals before, during, and after all pile driving activity, while disturbance zone monitoring will be implemented according to the schedule proposed here.

    Notional marine mammal observation locations are depicted in Figures 3-14 of the Navy's monitoring plan. Total days planned for each project are provided above in Table 1. Project-specific disturbance zone monitoring is described in the following list.

    • Project 1A—A minimum of three observers will be deployed to monitor the disturbance zone on a minimum of ten days of vibratory pile driving.

    • Project 1B—Only two total days of work are planned as part of Project 1B, and no disturbance zone monitoring will occur.

    • Project 2—Only impact pile driving is proposed in association with Project 2; therefore, the disturbance zone would be visible during shutdown zone monitoring. However, a minimum of two observers will be deployed to monitor the zones on a minimum of three of the seven anticipated days of pile driving.

    • Project 3A—This project is expected to occur in two phases, beginning in FY2017 and FY2022. During phase one, only two total days of work are planned and no disturbance zone monitoring will occur. During phase two, a minimum of three observers will be deployed to monitor the disturbance zone on a minimum of three days of vibratory pile driving.

    • Project 3B—A minimum of three observers will be deployed to monitor the disturbance zone on a minimum of five days of vibratory pile driving.

    • Projects 3C, 3D, and 3E—A minimum of two observers will be deployed to monitor the disturbance zone during all impact driving associated with these projects.

    • Project 3F—A minimum of three observers will be deployed to monitor the disturbance zone on a minimum of two days of vibratory pile driving.

    • Project 3G—A minimum of three observers will be deployed to monitor the disturbance zone on a minimum of four days of vibratory pile driving.

    • Project 4A—A minimum of four observers will be deployed to monitor the disturbance zone on a minimum of eight days of vibratory pile driving.

    • Project 4B—A minimum of four observers will be deployed to monitor the disturbance zone on a minimum of three days of vibratory pile driving.

    • Project 5—A minimum of four observers will be deployed to monitor the disturbance zone on a minimum of three days of vibratory pile driving.

    • Projects 6A and 6B—A minimum of five observers will be deployed to monitor the disturbance zone on a minimum of twelve days of vibratory pile driving.

    Individuals implementing the monitoring protocol will assess its effectiveness using an adaptive approach. Monitoring biologists will use their best professional judgment throughout implementation and seek improvements to these methods when deemed appropriate. Any modifications to the protocol will be coordinated between NMFS and the Navy.

    Data Collection

    We require that observers use standardized data forms. Among other pieces of information, the Navy will record detailed information about any implementation of shutdowns, including the distance of animals to the pile and description of specific actions that ensued and resulting behavior of the animal, if any. We require that, at a minimum, the following information be collected on the sighting forms:

    • Date and time that monitored activity begins or ends;

    • Construction activities occurring during each observation period;

    • Weather parameters (e.g., wind speed, percent cloud cover, visibility);

    • Water conditions (e.g., sea state, tide state);

    • Species, numbers, and, if possible, sex and age class of marine mammals;

    • Description of any observable marine mammal behavior patterns, including bearing and direction of travel and distance from pile driving activity;

    • Distance from pile driving activities to marine mammals and distance from the marine mammals to the observation point;

    • Description of implementation of mitigation measures (e.g., shutdown or delay).

    • Locations of all marine mammal observations; and

    • Other human activity in the area.

    Acoustic Monitoring

    The Navy will implement a sound source level verification study during activities associated with specific project components of interest. Because data is relatively lacking for these pile types, data collection would be targeted towards impact and vibratory driving of concrete, timber, and composite piles. A sample scope of work for acoustic monitoring is provided as Attachment 3 of the Navy's monitoring plan. The exact specifications of the acoustic monitoring work would be finalized in consultation with Navy personnel, subject to constraints related to logistics and security requirements. Reporting of measured sound level signals will include the average, minimum, and maximum rms value and frequency spectra for each pile monitored. Peak and single-strike SEL values would also be reported for impact pile driving. Acoustic monitoring would be conducted in association with Project 1A (impact driving of 18-24″ concrete piles and vibratory removal of 16″ timber piles); Project 2 (impact driving of 14″ steel H piles); Project 4A (impact driving of 18-24″ concrete piles and vibratory removal of 24″ concrete piles); and Project 5 (vibratory removal of 18″ timber piles and vibratory installation of 18″ composite piles). Propagation loss measurements will also be part of the plan.

    Marine Mammal Surveys

    Subject to funding availability, additional work would be performed to describe the spatial and temporal distributions of bottlenose dolphins and their densities in areas that may be affected by the specified activities. Surveys would be performed as soon as practicable.

    Reporting

    A draft report will be submitted to NMFS within 90 days of the completion of the monitoring period for each project. The report will include marine mammal observations pre-activity, during-activity, and post-activity during pile driving days, and will also provide descriptions of any behavioral responses to construction activities by marine mammals, a complete description of all mitigation shutdowns and the results of those actions, and an extrapolated total take estimate based on the number of marine mammals observed during the course of construction. A final report must be submitted within thirty days following resolution of comments on the draft report. The Navy will also submit a comprehensive summary report following conclusion of the specified activities.

    Adaptive Management

    The regulations governing the take of marine mammals incidental to Navy waterfront construction activities contain an adaptive management component.

    The reporting requirements associated with this final rule are designed to provide NMFS with monitoring data from the previous year to allow consideration of whether any changes are appropriate. The use of adaptive management allows NMFS to consider new information from different sources to determine (with input from the Navy regarding practicability) on an annual or biennial basis if mitigation or monitoring measures should be modified (including additions or deletions). Mitigation measures could be modified if new data suggests that such modifications would have a reasonable likelihood of reducing adverse effects on marine mammals and if the measures are practicable.

    The following are some of the possible sources of applicable data to be considered through the adaptive management process: (1) Results from monitoring reports, as required by MMPA authorizations; (2) results from general marine mammal and sound research; and (3) any information which reveals that marine mammals may have been taken in a manner, extent, or number not authorized by these regulations or subsequent LOAs.

    Changes to the Proposed Regulations

    In response to public comment, and as a result of clarifying discussions with the Navy, we made certain changes to the proposed regulations as described here. These changes are considered minor and do not affect any of our preliminary determinations.

    Monitoring

    We have added a requirement to conduct disturbance zone monitoring for Project 2, and have clarified that disturbance zone monitoring for Projects 3C-E would occur within the estimated 1,000-m disturbance zone associated with impact pile driving. We have also clarified that required acoustic monitoring will include measurements of propagation loss in addition to measurements of sound source levels. Finally, in order to accomplish acoustic monitoring of composite piles we have substituted Project 5 for Projects 6A-B in the acoustic monitoring plan.

    Impact on Availability of Affected Species for Taking for Subsistence Uses

    There are no relevant subsistence uses of marine mammals implicated by these actions. Therefore, we have determined that the total taking of affected species or stocks would not have an unmitigable adverse impact on the availability of such species or stocks for taking for subsistence purposes.

    Endangered Species Act (ESA)

    No marine mammal species listed under the ESA are expected to be affected by these activities. Therefore, we have determined that section 7 consultation under the ESA is not required.

    National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

    In our Federal Register notice of proposed rulemaking (January 3, 2017; 82 FR 684), we stated our intent to independently evaluate the Navy's draft EA and determine whether or not to adopt it. Since publication of the proposed rule, NOAA has completed revisions to NOAA's procedures for implementing NEPA and related authorities, as contained in the Companion Manual to NOAA Administrative Order (NAO) 216-6A (Companion Manual). The Companion Manual includes NOAA's revised categorical exclusions (CE) and related extraordinary circumstances.

    In accordance with the Companion Manual and NAO 216-6A, we have determined that issuance of this final rule qualifies to be categorically excluded from further NEPA review. Issuance of this final rule is consistent with categories of activities identified in CE B4 of the Companion Manual and we have not identified any extraordinary circumstances listed in Chapter 4 of the Companion Manual that would preclude application of this CE. NMFS has prepared a CE memorandum for the record.

    Classification

    Pursuant to the procedures established to implement Executive Order 12866, the Office of Management and Budget has determined that this rule is not significant.

    Pursuant to section 605(b) of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), the Chief Counsel for Regulation of the Department of Commerce certified to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration at the proposed rule stage that this action will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. Navy is the sole entity that would be subject to the requirements of these regulations, and the U.S. Navy is not a small governmental jurisdiction, small organization, or small business, as defined by the RFA. No comments were received regarding this certification. As a result, a regulatory flexibility analysis is not required and none has been prepared.

    Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no person is required to respond to nor shall a person be subject to a penalty for failure to comply with a collection of information subject to the requirements of the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) unless that collection of information displays a currently valid OMB control number. However, this rule does not contain a collection-of-information requirement subject to the provisions of the PRA because the applicant is a Federal agency.

    List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 217

    Exports, Fish, Imports, Indians, Labeling, Marine mammals, Penalties, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Seafood, Transportation.

    Dated: June 2, 2017. Samuel D. Rauch, III, Acting Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.

    For reasons set forth in the preamble, NMFS amends 50 CFR part 217 as follows:

    PART 217—REGULATIONS GOVERNING THE TAKING AND IMPORTING OF MARINE MAMMALS 1. The authority citation for part 217 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.

    Subpart Y—[Reserved] 2. Add reserved subpart Y. 3. Add subpart Z to read as follows: Subpart Z—Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy Waterfront Construction Activities at Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay Sec. 217.250 Specified activity and specified geographical region. 217.251 Effective dates. 217.252 Permissible methods of taking. 217.253 Prohibitions. 217.254 Mitigation requirements. 217.255 Requirements for monitoring and reporting. 217.256 Letters of Authorization. 217.257 Renewals and modifications of Letters of Authorization. 217.258 [Reserved] 217.259 [Reserved]
    § 217.250 Specified activity and specified geographical region.

    (a) Regulations in this subpart apply only to the U.S. Navy (Navy), and those persons it authorizes or funds to conduct activities on its behalf, for the taking of marine mammals that occurs in the area outlined in paragraph (b) of this section and that occurs incidental to waterfront construction activities.

    (b) The taking of marine mammals by Navy may be authorized in a Letter of Authorization (LOA) only if it occurs within waters adjacent to Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay and Crab Island.

    § 217.251 Effective dates.

    Regulations in this subpart are effective from July 12, 2017, through July 11, 2022.

    § 217.252 Permissible methods of taking.

    Under LOAs issued pursuant to § 216.106 of this chapter and § 217.256, the Holder of the LOA (hereinafter “Navy”) may incidentally, but not intentionally, take marine mammals within the area described in § 217.250(b) by Level B harassment associated with waterfront construction activities, provided the activity is in compliance with all terms, conditions, and requirements of the regulations in this subpart and the appropriate LOA.

    § 217.253 Prohibitions.

    Notwithstanding takings contemplated in § 217.250 and authorized by a LOA issued under § 216.106 of this chapter and § 217.256, no person in connection with the activities described in § 217.250 may:

    (a) Violate, or fail to comply with, the terms, conditions, and requirements of this subpart or a LOA issued under § 216.106 of this chapter and § 217.256;

    (b) Take any marine mammal not specified in such LOAs;

    (c) Take any marine mammal specified in such LOAs in any manner other than as specified;

    (d) Take a marine mammal specified in such LOAs if NMFS determines such taking results in more than a negligible impact on the species or stocks of such marine mammal; or

    (e) Take a marine mammal specified in such LOAs if NMFS determines such taking results in an unmitigable adverse impact on the species or stock of such marine mammal for taking for subsistence uses.

    § 217.254 Mitigation requirements.

    When conducting the activities identified in § 217.250, the mitigation measures contained in any LOA issued under § 216.106 of this chapter and § 217.256 must be implemented. These mitigation measures shall include but are not limited to:

    (a) General conditions:

    (1) A copy of any issued LOA must be in the possession of the Navy, its designees, and work crew personnel operating under the authority of the issued LOA.

    (2) The Navy shall conduct briefings for construction supervisors and crews, marine mammal monitoring team, acoustic monitoring team, and Navy staff prior to the start of the first pile driving activity conducted pursuant to this chapter, and when new personnel join the work, in order to explain responsibilities, communication procedures, marine mammal monitoring protocol, and operational procedures.

    (b) Except for pile driving covered under paragraphs (c) and (d) of this section, for all pile driving activity, the Navy shall implement a minimum shutdown zone of 15 m radius around the pile. If a marine mammal comes within or approaches the shutdown zone, such operations shall cease.

    (c) For impact pile driving associated with Project 3F (Warping Wharf with Capstan), the Navy shall implement a minimum shutdown zone of 40 m radius around the pile. If a marine mammal comes within or approaches the shutdown zone, such operations shall cease.

    (d) For impact pile driving associated with Project 4B (Small Craft Berth Site VI), the Navy shall implement a minimum shutdown zone of 20 m radius around the pile. If a marine mammal comes within or approaches the shutdown zone, such operations shall cease.

    (e) The Navy shall deploy marine mammal observers as indicated in the final Marine Mammal Monitoring Plan and as described in § 217.255 of this chapter.

    (1) For all pile driving activities, a minimum of one observer shall be stationed at the active pile driving rig or within reasonable proximity of the rig in order to monitor the shutdown zone.

    (2) Monitoring shall take place from 15 minutes prior to initiation of pile driving activity through 30 minutes post-completion of pile driving activity. Pre-activity monitoring shall be conducted for 15 minutes to ensure that the shutdown zone is clear of marine mammals, and pile driving may commence when observers have declared the shutdown zone clear of marine mammals. In the event of a delay or shutdown of activity resulting from marine mammals in the shutdown zone, animals shall be allowed to remain in the shutdown zone (i.e., must leave of their own volition) and their behavior shall be monitored and documented. Monitoring shall occur throughout the time required to drive a pile. The entire shutdown zone must be visible before it can be deemed clear of marine mammals.

    (3) If a marine mammal approaches or enters the shutdown zone, all pile driving activities at that location shall be halted. If pile driving is halted or delayed due to the presence of a marine mammal, the activity may not commence or resume until either the animal has voluntarily left and been visually confirmed beyond the shutdown zone or fifteen minutes have passed without re-detection of the animal.

    (4) Monitoring shall be conducted by trained observers, who shall have no other assigned tasks during monitoring periods. Trained observers shall be placed from the best vantage point(s) practicable to monitor for marine mammals and implement shutdown or delay procedures when applicable through communication with the equipment operator.

    (f) The Navy shall use soft start techniques for impact pile driving. Soft start for impact drivers requires contractors to provide an initial set of strikes at reduced energy, followed by a thirty-second waiting period, then two subsequent reduced energy strike sets. Soft start shall be implemented at the start of each day's impact pile driving and at any time following cessation of impact pile driving for a period of thirty minutes or longer.

    (g) Pile driving shall only be conducted during daylight hours.

    § 217.255 Requirements for monitoring and reporting.

    (a) Trained observers shall complete applicable portions of the Navy's Marine Species Awareness Training, as well as a general environmental awareness briefing conducted by Navy staff. At minimum, training shall include identification of bottlenose dolphins and relevant mitigation and monitoring requirements. All observers shall have no other construction-related tasks while conducting monitoring.

    (b) For shutdown zone monitoring, the Navy shall report on implementation of shutdown or delay procedures, including whether the procedures were not implemented and why (when relevant).

    (c) The Navy shall deploy additional observers to monitor disturbance zones according to the minimum requirements defined in this chapter. These observers shall collect sighting data and behavioral responses to pile driving for marine mammal species observed in the region of activity during the period of activity, and shall communicate with the shutdown zone observer as appropriate with regard to the presence of marine mammals. All observers shall be trained in identification and reporting of marine mammal behaviors.

    (1) During Project 1A (Tug Pier), Navy shall deploy a minimum of three additional marine mammal monitoring observers on a minimum of ten days of vibratory pile driving activity.

    (2) During Project 2 (UMC Layberth (P-661)), Navy shall deploy a minimum of two additional marine mammal monitoring observers on a minimum of three days of impact pile driving activity.

    (3) During the fiscal year 2022 phase of Project 3A (Explosives Handling Wharf #2), Navy shall deploy a minimum of three additional marine mammal monitoring observers on a minimum of three days of vibratory pile driving activity.

    (4) During Project 3B ((Dry Dock) Interface Wharf), Navy shall deploy a minimum of three additional marine mammal monitoring observers on a minimum of five days of vibratory pile driving activity.

    (5) During Projects 3C, 3D, and 3E (Refit Wharves #1-3), Navy shall deploy a minimum of two additional marine mammal monitoring observers on all days of pile driving activity.

    (6) During Project 3F (Warping Wharf with Capstan), Navy shall deploy a minimum of three additional marine mammal monitoring observers on a minimum of two days of vibratory pile driving activity.

    (7) During Project 3G (Tug Pier), Navy shall deploy a minimum of three additional marine mammal monitoring observers on a minimum of four days of vibratory pile driving activity.

    (8) During Project 4A (Transit Protection System (TPS) Pier), Navy shall deploy a minimum of four additional marine mammal monitoring observers on a minimum of eight days of vibratory pile driving activity.

    (9) During Project 4B (Small Craft Berth Site VI), Navy shall deploy a minimum of four additional marine mammal monitoring observers on a minimum of three days of vibratory pile driving activity.

    (10) During Project 5 (Magnetic Silencing Facility Repairs), Navy shall deploy a minimum of four additional marine mammal monitoring observers on a minimum of three days of vibratory pile driving activity.

    (11) During Projects 6A (Demolition of TPS Pier) and 6B (Demolition of North Trestle), Navy shall deploy a minimum of five additional marine mammal monitoring observers on a minimum of twelve days of vibratory pile driving activity.

    (d) The Navy shall conduct acoustic data collection (sound source verification and propagation loss), in accordance with NMFS's guidelines, in conjunction with Project 1A (Tug Pier), Project 2 (Unspecified Minor Construction Layberth Fender Pile Modification), Project 4A (TPS Pier), and Project 5 (Magnetic Silencing Facility).

    (e) Reporting:

    (1) Annual reporting:

    (i) Navy shall submit an annual summary report to NMFS not later than ninety days following the end of in-water work for each project. Navy shall provide a final report within thirty days following resolution of comments on the draft report.

    (ii) These reports shall contain, at minimum, the following:

    (A) Date and time that monitored activity begins or ends;

    (B) Construction activities occurring during each observation period;

    (C) Weather parameters (e.g., wind speed, percent cloud cover, visibility);

    (D) Water conditions (e.g., sea state, tide state);

    (E) Species, numbers, and, if possible, sex and age class of marine mammals;

    (F) Description of any observable marine mammal behavior patterns, including bearing and direction of travel and distance from pile driving activity;

    (G) Distance from pile driving activities to marine mammals and distance from the marine mammals to the observation point;

    (H) Description of implementation of mitigation measures (e.g., shutdown or delay);

    (I) Locations of all marine mammal observations; and

    (J) Other human activity in the area.

    (2) Navy shall submit a comprehensive summary report to NMFS no later than 90 days following the conclusion of marine mammal monitoring efforts described in this chapter.

    (3) Navy shall submit acoustic monitoring reports as necessary pursuant to § 217.255(d).

    (f) Reporting of injured or dead marine mammals:

    (1) In the unanticipated event that the activity defined in § 217.250 clearly causes the take of a marine mammal in a prohibited manner, Navy shall immediately cease such activity and report the incident to the Office of Protected Resources (OPR), NMFS, and to the Southeast Regional Stranding Coordinator, NMFS. Activities shall not resume until NMFS is able to review the circumstances of the prohibited take. NMFS will work with Navy to determine what measures are necessary to minimize the likelihood of further prohibited take and ensure MMPA compliance. Navy may not resume their activities until notified by NMFS. The report must include the following information:

    (i) Time, date, and location (latitude/longitude) of the incident;

    (ii) Description of the incident;

    (iii) Environmental conditions (e.g., wind speed and direction, Beaufort sea state, cloud cover, visibility);

    (iv) Description of all marine mammal observations in the 24 hours preceding the incident;

    (v) Species identification or description of the animal(s) involved;

    (vi) Fate of the animal(s); and

    (vii) Photographs or video footage of the animal(s). Photographs may be taken once the animal has been moved from the waterfront area.

    (2) In the event that Navy discovers an injured or dead marine mammal and determines that the cause of the injury or death is unknown and the death is relatively recent (e.g., in less than a moderate state of decomposition), Navy shall immediately report the incident to OPR and the Southeast Regional Stranding Coordinator, NMFS. The report must include the information identified in paragraph (f)(1) of this section. Activities may continue while NMFS reviews the circumstances of the incident. NMFS will work with Navy to determine whether additional mitigation measures or modifications to the activities are appropriate.

    (3) In the event that Navy discovers an injured or dead marine mammal and determines that the injury or death is not associated with or related to the activities defined in § 217.250 (e.g., previously wounded animal, carcass with moderate to advanced decomposition, scavenger damage), Navy shall report the incident to OPR and the Southeast Regional Stranding Coordinator, NMFS, within 24 hours of the discovery. Navy shall provide photographs or video footage or other documentation of the stranded animal sighting to NMFS. Photographs may be taken once the animal has been moved from the waterfront area.

    § 217.256 Letters of Authorization.

    (a) To incidentally take marine mammals pursuant to these regulations, Navy must apply for and obtain a LOA.

    (b) A LOA, unless suspended or revoked, may be effective for a period of time not to exceed the expiration date of these regulations.

    (c) If a LOA expires prior to the expiration date of these regulations, Navy may apply for and obtain a renewal of the LOA.

    (d) In the event of projected changes to the activity or to mitigation and monitoring measures required by a LOA, Navy must apply for and obtain a modification of the LOA as described in § 217.257.

    (e) The LOA shall set forth:

    (1) Permissible methods of incidental taking;

    (2) Means of effecting the least practicable adverse impact (i.e., mitigation) on the species, its habitat, and on the availability of the species for subsistence uses; and

    (3) Requirements for monitoring and reporting.

    (f) Issuance of the LOA shall be based on a determination that the level of taking will be consistent with the findings made for the total taking allowable under these regulations.

    (g) Notice of issuance or denial of a LOA shall be published in the Federal Register within thirty days of a determination.

    § 217.257 Renewals and modifications of Letters of Authorization.

    (a) A LOA issued under § 216.106 of this chapter and § 217.256 for the activity identified in § 217.250 shall be renewed or modified upon request by the applicant, provided that:

    (1) The proposed specified activity and mitigation, monitoring, and reporting measures, as well as the anticipated impacts, are the same as those described and analyzed for these regulations (excluding changes made pursuant to the adaptive management provision in paragraph (c)(1) of this section), and

    (2) NMFS determines that the mitigation, monitoring, and reporting measures required by the previous LOA under these regulations were implemented.

    (b) For a LOA modification or renewal requests by the applicant that include changes to the activity or the mitigation, monitoring, or reporting (excluding changes made pursuant to the adaptive management provision in paragraph (c)(1) of this section) that do not change the findings made for the regulations or that result in no more than a minor change in the total estimated number of takes (or distribution by species or years), NMFS may publish a notice of proposed LOA in the Federal Register, including the associated analysis of the change, and solicit public comment before issuing the LOA.

    (c) A LOA issued under § 216.106 of this chapter and § 217.256 for the activity identified in § 217.250 may be modified by NMFS under the following circumstances:

    (1) Adaptive Management—NMFS may modify (including augment) the existing mitigation, monitoring, or reporting measures (after consulting with Navy regarding the practicability of the modifications) if doing so creates a reasonable likelihood of more effectively accomplishing the goals of the mitigation and monitoring set forth in the preamble for these regulations.

    (i) Possible sources of data that could contribute to the decision to modify the mitigation, monitoring, or reporting measures in a LOA:

    (A) Results from Navy's monitoring from previous years.

    (B) Results from other marine mammal and/or sound research or studies.

    (C) Any information that reveals marine mammals may have been taken in a manner, extent or number not authorized by these regulations or subsequent LOAs.

    (ii) If, through adaptive management, the modifications to the mitigation, monitoring, or reporting measures are substantial, NMFS will publish a notice of proposed LOA in the Federal Register and solicit public comment.

    (2) Emergencies—If NMFS determines that an emergency exists that poses a significant risk to the well-being of the species or stocks of marine mammals specified in a LOA issued pursuant to § 216.106 of this chapter and § 217.256, a LOA may be modified without prior notice or opportunity for public comment. Notice would be published in the Federal Register within thirty days of the action.

    § 217.258 [Reserved]
    § 217.259 [Reserved]
    [FR Doc. 2017-11805 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 622 [Docket No. 170515489-7489-01] RIN 0648-BG89 Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Reef Fish Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico; Red Snapper Management Measures; Compliance With Court Order AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    This final rule revises the Gulf of Mexico (Gulf) red snapper commercial and recreational sector allocations of the stock annual catch limit (ACL), the commercial and recreational quotas, and the recreational annual catch targets (ACTs), including ACTs for the private angling and for-hire (charter vessels and headboats) components of the recreational sector. A court order directs NMFS to reinstate the previous red snapper sector allocations, and the corresponding sector quotas (which are equivalent to the ACLs), to 51 percent commercial and 49 percent recreational. The intent of this final rule is to ensure that the regulations reflect the sector allocations and corresponding catch levels as required by the court order.

    DATES:

    This final rule is effective on June 6, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Kelli O'Donnell, NMFS Southeast Regional Office, telephone: 727-824-5305, email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Gulf reef fish fishery includes red snapper and is managed under the Fishery Management Plan for the Reef Fish Resources of the Gulf of Mexico (FMP). The FMP was prepared by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council and is implemented by NMFS through regulations at 50 CFR part 622 under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act). All weights for red snapper below apply as round weight.

    The Secretary of Commerce approved Amendment 28 to the FMP on March 23, 2016. The purpose of Amendment 28 was to reallocate the red snapper harvest consistent with the 2014 red snapper update assessment to ensure the allowable catch and recovery benefits from a rebuilding stock were fairly and equitably allocated between the commercial and recreational sectors to achieve optimum yield. On April 28, 2016, NMFS published a final rule implementing Amendment 28 (81 FR 25576).

    The final rule for Amendment 28 revised the allocation of the red snapper ACL between the commercial and recreational sectors to be 48.5 percent and 51.5 percent, respectively, and consequently revised the commercial and recreational quotas and ACLs, as well as the recreational ACTs (81 FR 25576, April 28, 2016). However, a court decision in Guindon v. Pritzker, 2017 WL 875775 (D.D.C. March 3, 2017), vacated Amendment 28 and its implementing final rule. The court order directs NMFS to reinstate the sector allocations of red snapper to 51 percent commercial and 49 percent recreational, which were in effect prior to the implementation of the Amendment 28 final rule. This results in a total commercial quota of 7,007,000 lb (3,178,000 kg) and a total recreational quota of 6,733,000 lb (3,054,000 kg). The total recreational quota is further divided to a private angling quota and ACT of 3,885,000 lb (1,762,000 kg), and 3,108,000 lb (1,410,000 kg), respectively; and a Federal for-hire component quota and ACT of 2,848,000 lb (1,292,000 kg), and 2,278,000 lb (1,033,000 kg), respectively. The recreational component quotas and ACTs are in effect through the 2022 fishing year.

    All other provisions that are currently applicable to the Gulf reef fish fishery and red snapper remain unchanged as a result of this final rule.

    Classification

    The Assistant Administrator for NOAA Fisheries (AA) has determined that this final rule is consistent with the March 3, 2017, court order, the FMP, the Magnuson-Stevens Act, and other applicable laws.

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

    Because this rulemaking is required by court order and prior notice and opportunity for public comment are not required under 5 U.S.C. 553, or any other law, the regulatory flexibility analysis requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 603-605, do not apply to this final rule. In addition, because the changes required by the court order that are identified in this final rule are non-discretionary, the National Environmental Policy Act does not apply to this final rule.

    The AA finds good cause to waive notice and public comment on this action because it is unnecessary and contrary to the public interest, as provided by 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B). This action is limited in scope and ensures that the regulatory text provides accurate information to the regulated public that is consistent with a Federal court order. NMFS does not have discretion to take other action, as there is no alternative to complying with the requirements of the court order.

    Furthermore, the AA finds good cause to waive the 30-day delay in effectiveness, as provided by 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3), as such delay would be contrary to the public interest because the measures contained in this final rule are necessary to ensure that the Gulf reef fish fishery is conducted in compliance with a Federal court order. If the requirements are not implemented immediately, then red snapper harvest will not be managed in accordance with the court order.

    List of Subjects in 50 CFR Part 622

    Allocation, Commercial, Fisheries, Fishing, Gulf of Mexico, Recreational, Red snapper.

    Dated: June 2, 2017. Samuel D. Rauch, III, Acting Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.

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

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

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    2. In § 622.39, revise paragraphs (a)(1)(i) and (a)(2)(i) to read as follows:
    § 622.39 Quotas.

    (a) * * *

    (1) * * *

    (i) Commercial quota for red snapper. For fishing year 2017 and subsequent fishing years—7.007 million lb (3.178 million kg), round weight.

    (2) * * *

    (i) Recreational quota for red snapper—(A) Total recreational quota (Federal charter vessel/headboat and private angling component quotas combined). For fishing year 2017 and subsequent fishing years—6.733 million lb (3.054 million kg), round weight.

    (B) Federal charter vessel/headboat component quota. The Federal charter vessel/headboat component quota applies to vessels that have been issued a valid Federal charter vessel/headboat permit for Gulf reef fish any time during the fishing year. This component quota is effective for only the 2015 through 2022 fishing years. For the 2023 and subsequent fishing years, the applicable total recreational quota, specified in paragraph (a)(2)(i)(A) of this section, will apply to the recreational sector. For fishing years 2017 through 2022—2.848 million lb (1.292 million kg), round weight.

    (C) Private angling component quota. The private angling component quota applies to vessels that fish under the bag limit and have not been issued a Federal charter vessel/headboat permit for Gulf reef fish any time during the fishing year. This component quota is effective for only the 2015 through 2022 fishing years. For the 2023 and subsequent fishing years, the applicable total recreational quota, specified in paragraph (a)(2)(i)(A) of this section, will apply to the recreational sector. For fishing years 2017 through 2022—3.885 million lb (1.762 million kg), round weight.

    3. In § 622.41, revise paragraph (q)(2)(iii) to read as follows:
    § 622.41 Annual catch limits (ACLs), annual catch targets (ACTs), and accountability measures (AMs).

    (q) * * *

    (2) * * *

    (iii) Recreational ACT for red snapper—(A) Total recreational ACT (Federal charter vessel/headboat and private angling component ACTs combined). The total recreational ACT is 5.386 million lb (2.443 million kg), round weight.

    (B) Federal charter vessel/headboat component ACT. The Federal charter vessel/headboat component ACT applies to vessels that have been issued a valid Federal charter vessel/headboat permit for Gulf reef fish any time during the fishing year. This component ACT is effective for only the 2015 through 2022 fishing years. For the 2023 and subsequent fishing years, the applicable total recreational ACT, specified in paragraph (q)(2)(iii)(A) of this section, will apply to the recreational sector. The component ACT is 2.278 million lb (1.033 million kg), round weight, for fishing years 2017 through 2022.

    (C) Private angling component ACT. The private angling component ACT applies to vessels that fish under the bag limit and have not been issued a Federal charter vessel/headboat permit for Gulf reef fish any time during the fishing year. This component ACT is effective for only the 2015 through 2022 fishing years. For the 2023 and subsequent fishing years, the applicable total recreational ACT, specified in paragraph (q)(2)(iii)(A) of this section, will apply to the recreational sector. The component ACT is 3.108 million lb (1.410 million kg), round weight, for fishing years 2017 through 2022.

    [FR Doc. 2017-11804 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    82 108 Wednesday, June 7, 2017 Proposed Rules NATIONAL CREDIT UNION ADMINISTRATION 12 CFR Parts 701, 703, 705, 708a, 709, 741, 745, 746, 747, and 750 RIN 3133-AE68 Appeals Procedures AGENCY:

    National Credit Union Administration (NCUA).

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The NCUA Board (Board) proposes to adopt procedures to govern appeals to the Board that would apply to agency regulations that currently have their own embedded appeals provisions and will replace those current provisions. The procedures would apply in cases in which a decision rendered by a regional director or other program office director is subject to appeal to the Board. The proposed procedures are intended to result in greater efficiency, consistency, and better understanding of the way in which matters under covered regulations may be appealed to the Board.

    Excluded from the scope of this proposal are formal adjudications required under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) to be accompanied by “notice and an opportunity for a hearing on the record.” Matters that are not covered include formal enforcement actions, challenges to orders imposing prompt corrective action and matters that are within the jurisdiction of the NCUA's Supervisory Review Committee (SRC). With the issuance of this proposed rule, the Board is also proposing a new rule to govern the SRC, including the appeal to the Board of adverse determinations made by the SRC.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before August 7, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments by any of the following methods (Please send comments by one method only):

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

    NCUA Web site: https://www.ncua.gov/regulation-supervision/Pages/rules/proposed.aspx. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

    Email: Address to [email protected] Include “[Your name] Comments on Appeals Procedures” in the email subject line.

    Fax: (703) 518-6319. Use the subject line described above for email.

    Mail: Address to Gerard Poliquin, Secretary of the Board, National Credit Union Administration, 1775 Duke Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314-3428.

    Hand Delivery/Courier: Same as mail address.

    Public Inspection: All public comments are available on the agency's Web site at http://www.ncua.gov/RegulationsOpinionsLaws/comments as submitted, except as may not be possible for technical reasons. Public comments will not be edited to remove any identifying or contact information. Paper copies of comments may be inspected in NCUA's law library at 1775 Duke Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314, by appointment weekdays between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. To make an appointment, call (703) 518-6546 or send an email to [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Michael J. McKenna, General Counsel, Ross P. Kendall, Special Counsel to the General Counsel, or Benjamin M. Litchfield, Staff Attorney, at the above address, or telephone: (703) 518-6540.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Executive Summary

    If adopted, new part 746, subpart B will govern most authorized appeals to the Board of adverse determinations made at program office levels under agency regulations that permit such an appeal. The agency's discussion of the proposed changes details which rules would be affected but the Board specifically requests comments on any other agency rules that should provide for an appeal and thus be covered under the proposal. The following actions or determinations would not be covered under the proposal because appeals relating to them are already covered under different agency procedures but the Board nonetheless seeks comments on their proposed exclusion:

    • Formal enforcement actions;

    • Creditor claims in liquidation, to the extent that the claimant has requested and the Board has agreed to consider the appeal formally on the record;

    • Material supervisory determination within the jurisdiction of the Supervisory Review Committee, including appeals of SRC determination to the Board (addressed under a separate agency proposal issued with this proposal);

    • Challenges to actions imposed under the prompt corrective action regime; and

    • Appeals of matters that are delegated by rule to an officer or position below the Board for final, binding agency action.

    I. Background

    The Board is committed to providing credit unions, and other persons or entities that are affected by agency decisions, with an opportunity to obtain meaningful review of those decisions. At present, procedures for obtaining that review are embedded in and scattered throughout NCUA's regulations and, in many cases, are slightly different from one another. For example, time frames for seeking higher level review may differ and deadlines within which final agency action is to be rendered may also be different.1 In this proposal, the Board has developed a more uniform set of procedures to govern those rules in which an appeal to the Board is permitted. The Board seeks to strike a balance that will afford the appellant fair consideration of the issues while avoiding procedures that are overly burdensome, time consuming, and expensive for either the petitioner or the agency. The Board invites comment on all aspects of this proposal.

    1See, e.g., 12 CFR 701.32(b)(5), 701.34(a)(4), 741.11(d), 703.111(d).

    The proposed procedures would apply to federal credit unions (FCUs), federally insured, state-chartered credit unions (FISCUs), or certain institution-affiliated parties (IAPs) such as officers or directors when appealing an agency determination under one of the rules to which proposed part 746, subpart B would apply. For example, FCUs and FISCUs appealing a waiver determination by a regional director under the loan participations rule would be subject to these procedures.2 These procedures would also apply to an IAP appealing an adverse determination relating to a change in officials.3

    2 12 CFR 701.22.

    3 12 CFR 701.14.

    II. Summary of Regulations Affected by Part 746

    Several NCUA regulations contain appeals procedures in addition to their substantive provisions. These procedures generally lack uniformity and may be confusing for those seeking an appeal. To improve the appeals process that applies under the covered rules, the Board proposes to promulgate a more uniform set of appeals procedures contained in subpart B of part 746 to replace the current inconsistent appeals procedures that now apply to agency determinations under the affected regulations. The Board proposes to include in each of the affected rules a cross-reference to the proposed procedures to be located in subpart B of part 746.

    The following is a bulleted list of the various regulations that have appeals procedures that would be replaced by the proposed procedures in subpart B of part 746.

    Claims of a Creditor of an Insolvent FICU Under an NCUA Alternative Resolution Dispute Process. Within 60 days from the date that NCUA's Asset Management and Assistance Center (AMAC) issues a notice of disallowance, a creditor of an insolvent FICU may file or continue a lawsuit in U.S. district court or seek review by the Board.4 Claimants seeking Board review may request a hearing on the record in accordance with part 747 of NCUA's regulations and the formal adjudicatory procedures set forth in the APA.5 Alternatively, a claimant seeking review by the Board may submit to an alternative dispute resolution process.6 The proposed amendments supplant those procedures currently in part 709 of NCUA's regulations 7 and replace them with a reference to new subpart B to part 746.

    4 12 U.S.C. 1787(b)(6).

    5 12 U.S.C. 1787(b)(7)(A).

    6 12 U.S.C. 1787(b)(7)(B).

    7 12 CFR 709.8(c).

    Payment of Claims Regarding Federally Insured Shares or Deposits. The FCU Act provides that the Board is to make payment of the insured shares or deposits as soon as possible following a liquidation.8 The FCU Act authorizes the Board to require a proof of claim to be filed with it before making payment, and it contemplates that the Board may “approve or reject” such claims.9 The FCU Act also provides that the Board may, by regulation, prescribe procedures to resolve disputed claims.10 No conditions or limitations are imposed by statute on this resolution process, although the FCU Act does provide that the agency's final determination of an insurance claim is subject to judicial review in accordance with the relevant provisions of the APA.11 Subpart B to part 745 currently implements this authority. The proposed amendments would replace the current procedures.

    8 12 U.S.C. 1787(d)(1).

    9 12 U.S.C. 1787(d)(2).

    10 12 U.S.C. 1787(d)(3).

    11Id.

    Chartering and Field of Membership. NCUA's Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access (OCFPA) is responsible for making certain determinations regarding chartering and field of membership, and these determinations are appealable to the Board. The FCU Act does not provide any specific right to a hearing on the record in connection with any of these determinations, and the procedures do not call for such a proceeding. The Board proposes to delete from NCUA's Chartering and Field of Membership Manual all descriptions of the current procedures for challenging OCFPA determinations, such as the denial of initial charter applications (including proposed senior officials), requests for expansion or spinoff, requests to add an underserved area, and conversion requests. The Board proposes that all of these procedures be governed by new subpart B to part 746.

    Community Development Loans. In accordance with part 705 of NCUA's regulations, qualifying credit unions may apply for loans from NCUA's Community Development Revolving Loan Fund.12 A credit union failing to qualify may appeal to the Board. Part 705 specifies that the appeal must be taken within 30 days of the notice of disqualification, and it provides that the Board's review is limited to the threshold question of qualification.13 The Board proposes to replace these procedures with new subpart B to part 746.

    12 12 CFR part 705.

    13 12 CFR 705.6(f)(1).

    Golden Parachutes. Pursuant to part 750 of NCUA's regulations, FICUs are limited in the amount of severance plan arrangements that are permissible for senior level officials.14 Credit unions are permitted to request from the regional director or the Office of National Examinations and Supervision (ONES) Director, as appropriate, the authority to make an otherwise impermissible severance payment. If the request is denied, part 750 specifies a process by which the credit union may appeal to the Board.15 The Board proposes to replace that process with the procedures in subpart B to part 746.

    14 12 CFR part 750.

    15 12 CFR 750.6(b.).

    Investment Authority. An FCU may appeal decisions by the regional director or ONES Director rejecting its request for expanded investment authority or authority to engage in derivatives investment activity.16 In each case, the investment rule is silent as to the appeals procedures other than timing. The Board proposes that these appeals be governed by the procedures in new subpart B to part 746.

    16 12 CFR 703.20(d); 703.111(d); 703.114(c).

    Change of Officials for Troubled or Newly Chartered Credit Unions. A `troubled' or newly chartered FICU may appeal an adverse determination regarding a change of an official or officials to the Board. Procedures governing this review are in § 701.14 of NCUA's regulations. The regulation refers to subpart J of part 747 of NCUA's regulations which contains explicit guidance on the appeals process.17 There is no express statutory right to a hearing on the record in this circumstance. The Board proposes to replace the current procedures with the procedures in new subpart B to part 746. The 90-day time frame within which the Board must decide an appeal under § 701.14 would be preserved, as would other shorter time frames currently included in subpart J.

    17 12 CFR 747.901 et seq.

    Conversions and Mergers. NCUA administers the processes by which a FICU may convert to a mutual savings bank or merge into a bank.18 Part 708a specifies that the appropriate NCUA official will oversee the methods and procedures of the conversion or merger. If the appropriate NCUA official disapproves the methods by which the vote was taken or the procedures applicable to the vote, the FICU may appeal that disapproval to the Board.19 For conversions, a FICU may appeal a determination within 30 days and the Board must act within 90 days.20 For mergers, a FICU may appeal a determination within 30 days and the Board must act within 120 days.21 The Board proposes to replace these procedures with the appeals procedures in new subpart B to part 746. The Board specifically invites comment on whether the extension of these deadlines would pose an undue hardship on credit unions converting to mutual savings banks or merging with banks.

    18 12 CFR part 708a.

    19 12 CFR 708a.108(d).

    20Id.

    21 12 CFR 708a.308(d).

    Other Miscellaneous Regulations Affected by Subpart B to Part 746. The following is a list of additional regulations that contain appeals procedures that would be replaced with the proposed appeals procedures in subpart B of part 746.

    • NCUA's general lending rule.22

    22 12 CFR 701.21(h)(3).

    • NCUA's eligible obligations rule.23

    23 12 CFR 701.23(h)(3).

    • NCUA's loan participations rule.24

    24 12 CFR 701.22(c).

    • Section 701.32 of NCUA's regulations regarding public unit and nonmember shares.25

    25 12 CFR 701.32(b)(5).

    • Section 701.34 of NCUA's regulations regarding the low income designation.26

    26 12 CFR 701.34(a)(4).

    • Section 741.11 of NCUA's regulations regarding branch offices outside the United States.27

    27 12 CFR 741.11(d).

    III. Exclusions

    New subpart B to part 746 is designed to govern appeals under the regulations addressed above. There are five areas that are excluded from the scope of the proposed rule. Each of these is discussed below.

    Enforcement Actions. Appeals that involve an agency hearing on the record and the development of an initial decision by a hearing officer or administrative law judge and are governed by formal procedural requirements described in secs. 7 and 8 of the APA.28 These formal requirements are applicable only where the Federal Credit Union Act (FCU Act) 29 specifically calls for the agency's adjudication “to be determined on the record after opportunity for an agency hearing.” 30

    28 5 U.S.C. 556, 557.

    29 12 U.S.C. 1751 et seq.

    30 5 U.S.C. 554(a).

    Section 206 of the FCU Act addresses enforcement actions that the NCUA may take against an insured institution or its IAPs.31 Of these, four specifically include an opportunity for the affected entity or individual to be heard before the action becomes effective. These include actions to terminate the institution's insured status (sec. 206(c)), cease and desist actions (sec. 206(e)), removal actions (sec. 206(g)), and civil money penalties (sec. 206(k)), including any actions to obtain enforcement of an outstanding order issued under sec. 206 or under the prompt corrective action provisions in sec. 216 of the FCU Act.32 There are two enforcement actions that may be taken by NCUA with immediate effectiveness and an agency hearing is not required (temporary cease and desist actions (sec. 206(f)) and actions to appoint a conservator (sec. 206(h)). Each of these carries with it an opportunity for the affected entity or individual to proceed immediately to court to file a challenge to the NCUA's action.

    31 12 U.S.C. 1786.

    32 12 U.S.C. 1790d.

    Other formal enforcement measures are found in sec. 131 of the FCU Act, which provides that FCUs convicted of money laundering, cash transaction reporting, or certain other related offenses are subject to forfeiture of their charter after a pre-termination hearing conducted on the record.33 In addition, FICUs fined for failure to file accurate call reports may request a hearing on the record under sec. 202(a)(3) of the FCU Act.34 Similarly, FISCUs fined for failure to submit accurate certified statements in connection with calculating National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund premium charges may request a hearing on the record under sec. 202(d)(2)(E) of the FCU Act.35 Finally, in accordance with sec. 304(e)(3) of the FCU Act, the Board may terminate a FICU's membership in the Central Liquidity Facility (CLF) for non-compliance with statutory or regulatory requirements pertaining to the CLF, but only after providing the opportunity for an agency hearing.36

    33 12 U.S.C. 1772d.

    34 12 U.S.C. 1782(a)(3).

    35 12 U.S.C. 1782(d)(2)(E).

    36 12 U.S.C. 1795c(e)(3).

    Actions under sec. 206(i) of the FCU Act to suspend, remove, or prohibit individuals who have engaged in certain criminal acts are treated somewhat differently. In these instances, the affected individual is removed immediately, but is given the opportunity to appear before the Board to show that his or her continued service on behalf of the FICU does not pose a threat to the interests of the credit union or its members.37 The FCU Act directs the Board to fix a time and place at which the party may appear, in person or through counsel, to submit written material and make oral presentations and, with the agreement of the Board, oral testimony.38

    37 12 U.S.C. 1786(i)(3).

    38Id.; 12 CFR part 747, subpart D. In a case involving a challenge to an immediate removal of a bank executive by the FDIC, acting under its similar authority, the Supreme Court held that the absence of the right to a pre-removal hearing was constitutionally sufficient and did not violate the due process clause of the Fifth Amendment. FDIC v. Mallen, 486 U.S. 230 (1988).

    For these types of actions, NCUA has promulgated explicit rules of procedure, which provide safeguards such as representation by counsel, document production, discovery, testimony from witnesses, an official record of the proceedings, and the development of a recommended decision by an administrative law judge for the consideration of the Board.39 Such procedures regarding these enforcement actions would not be covered by new subpart B to part 746.

    39 12 CFR part 747.

    Creditor claims in liquidation that are litigated or reviewed by the Board under formal agency adjudication procedures. The FCU Act specifies that a person appealing an initial creditor claim determination by the liquidating agent of an insolvent FICU may either: (1) File an action in federal court (or renew an action that had been pending before the liquidation began) seeking a de novo judicial determination of the merits of his claim; or (2) they may request that the Board review the claim.40 The FCU Act also specifies that, if the Board agrees to the review request, the Board must consider the claim after opportunity for a hearing on the record.41 Part 709 of NCUA's regulations implements this provision by providing that the formal adjudication provisions set out in part 747, subpart A will govern the process.42 These provisions remain in place and are not affected by new subpart B to part 746. However, as discussed above, alternatively a petitioner may request an appeal under the proposed provisions in subpart B to part 746.

    40 12 U.S.C. 1787(b)(6), (7). The FCU Act also permits the Board to establish alternative dispute resolution procedures, which it has done in § 709.8(c). As discussed below, those procedures will be replaced by new subpart B to part 746.

    41 12 U.S.C. 1787(b)(7).

    42 12 CFR 709.8(b).

    Material Supervisory Determinations. As required by the Riegle Community Development and Regulatory Improvement Act of 1994,43 NCUA established an SRC to provide a forum for FICUs to appeal an examiner's material supervisory determinations. Procedures followed by the SRC are described in Interpretive Ruling and Policy Statement (IRPS) 11-1, as amended by IRPS 12-1. Subjects that may be appealed to the SRC include examination ratings, the adequacy of loan loss reserve provisions, and loan classifications on loans that are significant to the institution.44 The Board expanded the jurisdiction of the SRC in April 2011 by adding appeals of determinations by the Director of the Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives to deny a reimbursement request made in connection with a technical assistance grant.45 As proposed, the provisions in new subpart B to part 746 would not apply to issues that are reviewable by the SRC. Along with the issuance of this proposed rule, the Board is seeking comments on a separate proposal that contains significant changes to the SRC, including how adverse determinations made by the SRC may be appealed to the Board. If adopted, those proposed changes to the SRC would be contained in a new subpart A to part 746.

    43 Public Law 103-325, 108 Stat. 2160 (Sept. 23, 1994).

    44Id.

    45 76 FR 3674 (Jan. 20, 2011).

    Prompt Corrective Action. Under the FCU Act, FICUs are subject to mandatory and discretionary supervisory actions, based on their net worth position.46 Mandatory actions are not subject to appeal, but discretionary actions are. Under the FCU Act, these discretionary measures are considered “material supervisory determinations” and could have been made subject to the jurisdiction of the SRC.47 The FCU Act, however, permits the Board to establish a separate appeals process regarding these determinations. Exercising this authority, the Board determined previously that challenges to determinations made by a regional director or ONES Director and imposed under the prompt corrective action regime are more appropriately covered by the procedures in subpart L to part 747.48 These procedures are informal but specialized, ranging from the submission of written materials (in the case of orders imposing discretionary supervisory action) 49 to requesting a hearing before a presiding officer designated by the Board (for orders reclassifying a credit union on safety and soundness criteria, as well as orders to dismiss a director or senior executive officer). In the context of discretionary supervisory actions, the Board will respond to the written challenge.50 In the context of challenges to reclassification and dismissal of officials or directors, the rules provide for a hearing at which the appellant is entitled to be represented by counsel, to introduce relevant documents, and to make oral presentations. Witness testimony is permissible with the consent of the presiding officer.51 The hearing is recorded, and the appellant is entitled to receive a transcript upon request and payment of the cost thereof. The presiding officer makes a recommendation to the Board, which has 60 days in which to decide the issue.52

    46 12 U.S.C. 1790d; 12 CFR part 702.

    47 12 U.S.C. 1790d(k).

    48See 12 CFR part 747, subpart L.

    49 The affected credit union also has the option under this procedure to request the recommendation of NCUA's Ombudsman concerning the matters at issue.

    50 12 CFR 747.2002.

    51 The presiding officer is an individual designated by the NCUA Board to hold informal hearings under subpart L to part 747.

    52 12 CFR 747.2003, 743.2004.

    Because the determinations made by a regional director or the ONES Director and imposed under the prompt corrective action regime are addressed separately, they are not subject to proposed subpart B to part 746. Similar determinations involving exclusively corporate credit unions are set forth in subpart M to part 747 and are likewise unaffected by this proposal. However, the Board seeks specific comments as to whether appeals provisions relating to prompt corrective action are sufficient and whether such provisions should be consolidated with the proposed part 746.

    Other Exclusions. By rule, appeals of adverse determinations under the Freedom of Information Act are decided by the General Counsel.53 The General Counsel also decides on requests made under NCUA's Touhy regulation 54 and appeals of initial determinations made under the Privacy Act.55 None of these areas would be affected by this proposed rule but the Board seeks comments on their exclusion.

    53 12 CFR 792.28.

    54Touhy regulations prohibit the unauthorized release of information by current (and typically former) agency employees and provide a procedure for centralized agency decision-making concerning how the agency will respond to a subpoena or other request for testimony or documents served on a current or former agency employee. See United States ex rel. Touhy v. Ragen, 340 U.S. 462, 468 (1951); see also 5 U.S.C. 301.

    55 12 CFR 792.46, 792.59.

    The proposed procedures in subpart B to part 746 would also not affect how consumer complaints are processed by the NCUA.56 On September 30, 2010, the Board delegated the authority to examine and supervise federal credit unions for compliance with consumer laws and regulations to OCFPA. As a result of this delegation, consumers may not appeal determinations by OCFPA's Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs to the Board. The Board invites comment on this exclusion.

    56 NCUA's current consumer complaint procedures are set forth in NCUA Letter to Credit Unions 15-CU-04 (June 2015).

    IV. Section Analysis Subpart B to Part 746—Informal Appeals Procedures

    The Board is proposing to add subpart B to part 746 to address procedures that govern informal appeals of agency decisions under specific regulations. As discussed above, the proposed rule would amend existing NCUA regulations to include a cross-reference to the procedures contained in this subpart. The Board proposes to adopt these procedures to improve and streamline the appeals process as it applies to decisions under the covered rules.

    Section 746.201—Authority, Purpose, and Scope

    The first section of proposed subpart B to part 746 states the Board's authority for issuing the rule as well as its scope and purpose.

    201(a) Authority

    The Board is issuing this proposed rule pursuant to authority granted to it by secs. 120, 207, and 209 of the FCU Act. Section 120 of the FCU Act is a general grant of regulatory authority over FCUs. Section 207 of the FCU Act is a specific grant of authority over share insurance coverage, conservatorships, and liquidations. Section 209 of the FCU Act is a plenary grant of regulatory authority to issue rules and regulations necessary or appropriate to carry out its role as share insurer for all FICUs.

    Section 746.201(b) Purpose

    As stated above, the purpose of the proposed rule is to provide uniform procedures for appeals to the Board under affected agency regulations. The Board believes the creation of uniform rules will help ensure that appellants receive appropriate due process and that agency decisions are made in a prompt and efficient manner.

    Section 746.201(c) Scope

    Paragraph (c) first lists each of the regulations with current appeal procedures that would be covered under the new rule. The section would also clarify that there are five categories of agency actions that are excluded from the scope of the rule. Because this rule would only apply to informal agency adjudications, formal adjudications would be excluded. Likewise, creditor claim appeals where the claimant has requested a hearing on the record would be excluded. In addition, the rule would not cover appeals of prompt corrective action determinations or material supervisory determinations appealable to NCUA's SRC. Finally, the rule would not cover the appeal of FOIA determinations, Privacy Act determinations, or determinations made under NCUA's Touhy regulation.

    Section 746.202—Definitions

    In § 746.202, the Board proposes to define certain terms. Unless otherwise defined, the Board expects FICUs and other affected parties to interpret terms or phrases according to their plain meaning.

    Initial Agency Determination

    The proposed rule would define “initial agency determination” to clarify that the rule only applies to certain agency decisions made by personnel below the Board level. The rule does not apply to any action that results in the formulation of a rule, regulation, guidance document, or policy statement.

    Petitioner

    The term “petitioner” would refer to a natural person or legal entity seeking review of an initial agency determination. Several of NCUA's regulations use different terminology when referring to parties appealing determinations to the Board. For example, a party appealing the denial a creditor claim is a “claimant,” 57 while a party appealing a denial of share insurance coverage is referred to as an “accountholder.” 58 Rather than use all of these different terms, the Board is proposing to adopt a uniform term to describe all classes of individuals or legal entities appealing determinations to the Board.

    57See 12 CFR 709.7.

    58See 12 CFR 745.202.

    Program Office

    Similarly, the Board is proposing to adopt a uniform term “program office” to refer to all offices within NCUA responsible for making initial agency determinations. Several NCUA offices below the Board level are responsible for administering various NCUA regulations. For example, chartering and field of membership determinations are made by OCFPA, while waivers and safety and soundness determinations are made by the appropriate regional office or ONES. Rather than use different terminology, the Board is proposing to adopt “program office” as a uniform term to describe the different NCUA offices responsible for making initial agency determinations.

    Section 746.203—Request for Reconsideration

    Proposed § 746.203 would set forth procedures for requesting reconsideration from a program office prior to filing an appeal with the Board. Several regulations issued by the NCUA Board permit affected parties to request reconsideration. This process is a useful, relatively inexpensive, and efficient method of resolving most disputes. It also limits the overall number of matters appealed to the Board. Therefore, the Board proposes to make this optional procedure available for any matter that could otherwise be appealed to the Board under part 746, subpart B and seeks comments on this approach.

    Section 746.203(a) Reconsideration

    The reconsideration process promotes greater efficiency by allowing matters to be resolved at the program office level where possible. In general, the Board anticipates that the disposition of a request for reconsideration will either resolve the matter entirely or clarify the issues that remain for resolution at the Board level. Ordinarily, the Board anticipates that one request for reconsideration will be sufficient, and that the next appropriate step for a party still seeking resolution of the issues will be to appeal to the Board. The rule recognizes, however, that there may be cases involving extenuating circumstances, such as the discovery of new evidence or documentation, and that a second request for reconsideration may be appropriate in such circumstances. Absent such circumstances, a second request for reconsideration would be treated as an appeal to the Board.

    Section 746.203(e); (f); (g) Determination of Program Office; Notice of Determination; Failure To Make a Determination

    Paragraph (e) would require the program office to issue a written determination within 30 calendar days of receiving a first request for reconsideration. Paragraph (f) would specify that the written determination must include a description of any right to appeal a determination to the Board. In the case of creditor claims, paragraph (f)(2) would require a description of the right to file or continue a lawsuit in federal court.

    In the Board's experience, 30 calendar days is a sufficient amount of time for a program office to consider new information and reach a determination after reconsideration. If the program office fails to make a determination within 30 calendar days, proposed paragraph (g) would treat the request for reconsideration as if it had been denied. To avoid undue prejudice, the denial of a request for reconsideration is treated as an initial agency determination for purposes of the deadline to file an appeal with the Board in proposed § 746.204. If the petitioner obtains new information or there are reasonable, mitigating circumstances that precluded the presentation of existing information in connection with the first request for reconsideration, as determined solely by the program office in its reasonable judgment, the petitioner may request a second reconsideration prior to a Board appeal.

    Section 746.204—Appeal to the Board

    Proposed § 746.204 would state the procedures for filing an appeal with the Board. The provision would also list the information that must be included as part of the appeal. These requirements would be similar to the current requirements for creditor claims and share insurance claims, including the requirement that any appeal must be filed with the Secretary of the Board within 60 calendar days of the date of the initial agency determination or, if applicable, any determination following a request for reconsideration. However, the Board may grant extensions for timely filing in response to a petitioner's request base on the petitioner's reasonable, extenuating circumstances.

    Section 746.204(c) Failure To File a Timely Appeal

    In order to establish subject matter jurisdiction, federal courts typically require affected parties to exhaust administrative remedies.59 For example, in creditor and share insurance cases, the failure to exhaust administrative remedies is a jurisdictional bar preventing affected parties from seeking judicial review of their claims in federal court.60 Proposed paragraph (c) would clarify that, absent mitigating circumstances, a petitioner who fails to file a timely request for an appeal would be considered to have waived claims that may be adjudicated under part 746, subpart B.

    59See Avocados Plus, Inc. v. Veneman, 370 F.3d 1243 (D.C. Cir. 2004); Volvo GM Heavy Truck Corp. v. Dep't of Labor, 118 F.3d 205, 209-211 (4th Cir. 1997).

    60See Freeman v. FDIC, 56 F.3d 1394 (D.C. Cir. 1994).

    204(d); (e); (f) Content of Request; Burden of Proof; Amending or Supplementing the Appeal

    Proposed paragraph (d) would outline the content requirements for an appeal to the Board. To ensure the Board is able to review an appeal in a timely and efficient manner, this paragraph would require a petitioner to provide a statement of the facts on which an appeal is based, any objections to the basis on which the program office made its initial determination, and any additional evidence that may be relevant to the matter that was not previously provided to the program office. Proposed paragraph (e) would address the burden of proof at the appeal level.

    Proposed paragraph (f) would describe the right of the petitioner to file supplemental materials within 45 calendar days of filing an appeal. In addition to the authority of the Board to request additional information, the petitioner may amend or supplement the written record. If the petitioner does amend or supplement the record, the Board is permitted to request additional information. A petitioner's failure to provide information requested by the Board could serve as a basis for denial of an appeal.

    Section 746.204(g) Request for Oral Hearing

    Section 746.204(g) would specify that a petitioner may request an oral hearing before the Board and provides cross-references to proposed § 746.207, which sets out the procedures that govern oral hearings. The petitioner may request to appear before the Board, in person or through or with counsel. This request should be filed with the initial appeal documents. On his or her own initiative or at the request of the petitioner, the Chairman may in his or her sole discretion allow for a hearing to be conducted via teleconference or video conference facilities.

    Section 746.205—Preliminary Considerations Regarding the Appeal

    This section of the proposed rule describes preliminary internal processes for reviewing appeals. Additional information from the petitioner may be requested by the agency in order to provide the Board with a more full and complete administrative record but such requests must be reasonable and timely to facilitate the processing of the appeal, not to delay it.

    Section 746.206 Administration of the Appeal

    Proposed § 746.206 would set out the standard procedures followed by the Board when it receives a timely appeal. These proposed procedures would be, in some respects, a codification of informal practices that the Board currently follows when reviewing appeals.

    Section 746.206(a) Review by the Special Counsel

    Proposed paragraph (a) would describe procedures followed by the Special Counsel when reviewing an appeal. After receiving a timely appeal, the Special Counsel would be responsible for gathering relevant evidence from the appropriate program office and conducting an independent review of these materials along with any materials provided by the petitioner. The Special Counsel would then provide a written recommendation to the Board and, at the request of the Board, make an oral presentation in an official meeting concerning the recommendation. The duties of the Special Counsel under this provision must be fulfilled in a timely manner and all requests for additional information must be reasonable, to facilitate the appeal.

    Section 746.206(b) Determination on Appeal

    Proposed paragraph (b) would require the Board to render a written decision stating the reasons for the decision within 90 calendar days from the date of receipt of an appeal by the Secretary of the Board. Such a decision would constitute a final agency action permitting the petitioner to seek review in federal court under the APA. In the discretion of the Chairman, the time for the Board's decision may be extended as the Chairman may consider necessary or appropriate for a full and fair consideration of the issues, including accommodation of an oral hearing. If the Board does not reach a decision within 90 calendar days from the date of receipt, or within any extension of time as established by the Chairman, the appeal will be deemed to be denied. The deadline will help ensure that the Board has adequate time to decide a matter on appeal while avoiding any undue prejudice to petitioners from unnecessary delays.

    Section 746.207—Procedures for Oral Hearing

    This section of the proposed rule sets out the process for requesting and conducting an oral hearing. The Board recognizes that, in some unusual cases, the opportunity to make a presentation in person is necessary or useful to assure a thorough understanding of the issues in a case.

    Section 746.207(a); (b); (c) Request for Oral Hearing; Action on Request; Effect of Denial

    Paragraph (a) would describe the process for requesting an oral hearing. The request would accompany the notice of appeal itself, set out in a separate document entitled “Request for Oral Hearing.” The petitioner must show good cause as to why the NCUA should hold an oral hearing, stating reasons why the case cannot be presented adequately with only written statements. Proposed paragraph (b) would specify that an oral hearing would be scheduled provided at least one Board member agrees to hear the appeal, but specifies that the action by a Board member to approve an oral hearing must be taken within 20 days of the receipt of the appeal by the Board Secretary. The Special Counsel would notify the petitioner of the Board's determination whether to approve a request for an oral hearing. Proposed paragraph (c) would specify that, in the event the request does not receive the support of at least one Board member, the appeal will proceed on the basis of the written record.

    Section 746.207(d) Procedures for Oral Hearing (d)(1) Scheduling; Location

    Oral hearings will be held at NCUA headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia, except that on his or her own initiative or at the request of the petitioner, the Chairman may in his or her sole discretion allow for a hearing to be conducted via teleconference or video conference facilities.

    (d)(2) Appearances; Representation

    At an oral hearing, the petitioner would be permitted to be represented by not more than two officers, employees, or other representatives (including counsel) unless the Chairman, in his or hers sole discretion, allows a greater number of participants. This proposed paragraph recognizes the general right granted in the APA for individuals appearing in person before an agency to be “accompanied, represented, and advised by counsel or, if permitted by the agency, by other qualified representative[s].” 61 In general, courts have found the right to counsel to be a fundamental aspect of procedural due process in both informal and formal agency adjudications.62

    61 5 U.S.C. 555(b).

    62See Goldberg v. Kelly, 397 U.S. 254, 270 (1970) (“The right to be heard would be, in many cases, of little avail if it did not comprehend the right to be heard by counsel. We do not say that counsel must be provided at the pre-termination hearing, but only that the recipient must be allowed to retain an attorney if he so desires. Counsel can help delineate the issues, present factual contentions in an orderly manner, conduct cross-examination, and generally safeguard the interests of the recipient.”).

    (d)(3) Conduct of Oral Hearing

    Proposed paragraph (d)(3) addresses procedures at the oral hearing and would permit the use of presentations based on written evidence submitted as part of the appeal documents filed with the Secretary of the Board. The petitioner would be given the opportunity to present first, followed by a representative of the program office. The petitioner would be permitted to rebut information presented by the program office.

    V. Regulatory Procedures Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act requires NCUA to prepare an analysis to describe any significant economic impact a rule may have on a substantial number of small entities (primarily those under $100 million in assets). This proposed rule only provides enhanced voluntary opportunities for credit unions to appeal agency determinations. Accordingly, it will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small credit unions, and therefore, no regulatory flexibility analysis is required.

    Paperwork Reduction Act

    The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA) applies to rulemakings in which an agency by rule creates a new paperwork burden on regulated entities or modifies an existing burden. 44 U.S.C. 3507(d). For purposes of the PRA, a paperwork burden may take the form of a either a reporting or a recordkeeping requirement, both referred to as information collections. Proposed new Subpart B to part 746 establishes procedures by which credit unions or other entities affected by an initial decision by an NCUA program office may seek and obtain the review of that decision by the NCUA Board.

    The rule proposes to consolidate the information collection requirements of the informal appeals process under a new part; as such, NCUA intends to remove the burden allocated to the appeals process currently under OMB control numbers 3133-0141, -0127, -0114, -0117, -0133, and -0138, upon promulgation of this new rule, and requests a new OMB control number for the information collection requirements under part 746.

    Estimated Number of Respondents:

    Requests for Reconsideration: 24; Appeals: 10.

    Frequency:

    Requests for Reconsideration: 1; Appeals: 1.

    Estimated Burden per Response:

    Requests for Reconsideration: 10 hours; Appeals: 20 hours.

    Estimated Annual Burden:

    Requests for Reconsideration: 240 hours; Appeals: 200 hours.

    Total: 440 hours.

    The PRA and OMB regulations require that the public be provided an opportunity to comment on the paperwork requirements, including an agency's estimate of the burden of the paperwork requirements. The Board invites comment on: (1) Whether the paperwork requirements are necessary; (2) the accuracy of NCUA's estimates on the burden of the paperwork requirements; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the paperwork requirements; and (4) ways to minimize the burden of the paperwork requirements.

    The Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act, 1999—Assessment of Federal Regulations and Policies on Families

    NCUA has determined that this rule will not affect family well-being within the meaning of sec. 654 of the Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act, 1999, Public Law 105-277, 112 Stat. 2681 (1998).

    Executive Order 13132

    Executive Order 13132 encourages independent regulatory agencies to consider the impact of their actions on state and local interests. In adherence to fundamental federalism principles, NCUA, an independent regulatory agency as defined in 44 U.S.C. 3502(5), voluntarily complies with the executive order. This rulemaking will not have a substantial direct effect on the states, on the connection between the national government and the states, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government. NCUA has determined that this proposal does not constitute a policy that has federalism implications for purposes of the executive order.

    List of Subjects 12 CFR Part 701

    Credit, Credit unions, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    12 CFR Part 703

    Credit unions, Investments.

    12 CFR Part 705

    Credit unions, grants, loans, revolving fund.

    12 CFR Part 708a

    Credit unions, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements

    12 CFR Part 709

    Claims, Credit unions.

    12 CFR Part 741

    Credit unions, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Share insurance.

    12 CFR Part 745

    Administrative practice and procedure, Claims, Credit unions, Share insurance.

    12 CFR Part 746

    Administrative practice and procedure, Claims, Credit Unions, Investigations.

    12 CFR Part 747

    Administrative practice and procedure, Claims, Credit unions, Investigations.

    12 CFR Part 750

    Credit unions, Golden parachute payments, Indemnity payments.

    By the National Credit Union Administration Board, this 25th day of May, 2017.

    Gerard Poliquin, Secretary of the Board.

    For the reasons discussed above, the NCUA Board proposes to amend 12 CFR parts 701, 703, 705, 708a, 709, 741, 745, 747, and 750; and to amend 12 CFR part 746, as proposed to be added elsewhere in this issue of the Federal Register, as follows:

    PART 701—ORGANIZATION AND OPERATION OF FEDERAL CREDIT UNIONS 1. The authority citation for part 701 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    12 U.S.C. 1752(5), 1755, 1756, 1757, 1758, 1759, 1761a, 1761b, 1766, 1767, 1782, 1784, 1786, 1787, 1789. Section 701.6 is also authorized by 15 U.S.C. 3717. Section 701.31 is also authorized by 15 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.; 42 U.S.C. 1981 and 3601-3610. Section 701.35 is also authorized by 42 U.S.C. 4311-4312.

    2. Revise § 701.14(e) to read as follows:
    § 701.14 Change in official or senior executive officer in credit unions that are newly chartered or are in troubled condition.

    (e) Notice of disapproval. NCUA may disapprove the individual serving as a director, committee member or senior executive officer if it finds that the competence, experience, character, or integrity of the individual with respect to whom a notice under this section is submitted indicates that it would not be in the best interests of the members of the credit union or of the public to permit the individual to be employed by, or associated with, the credit union. The Notice of Disapproval will advise the parties of their rights to request reconsideration from the regional director and/or file an appeal with the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    3. Revise § 701.21(h)(3) to read as follows:
    § 701.21 Loans to Members and Lines of Credit to Members.

    (h) * * *

    (3) A regional director will provide a written determination on a waiver request within 45 calendar days after receipt of the request; however, the 45-day period will not begin until the requesting credit union has submitted all necessary information to the regional director. If the regional director does not provide a written determination within the 45-day period the request is deemed denied. A credit union may request the regional director to reconsider a denied waiver request and/or file an appeal with the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    4. Revise § 701.22(c) to read as follows:
    § 701.22 Loan participations.

    (c) To seek a waiver from any of the limitations in paragraph (b) of this section, a federally insured credit union must submit a written request to its regional director with a full and detailed explanation of why it is requesting the waiver. Within 45 calendar days of receipt of a completed waiver request, including all necessary supporting documentation and, if appropriate, any written concurrence, the regional director will provide the federally insured credit union a written response. The regional director's decision will be based on safety and soundness and other considerations; however, the regional director will not grant a waiver to a federally insured, state-chartered credit union without the prior written concurrence of the appropriate state supervisory authority. A federally insured credit union may request the regional director to reconsider a denied waiver request and/or file an appeal with the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    5. Revise § 701.23(h)(3) to read as follows:
    § 701.23 Purchase, sale, and pledge of eligible obligations.

    (h) * * *

    (3) Appeal to NCUA Board. A federal credit union may request the regional director to reconsider a denied request for expanded authority and/or file an appeal with the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    6. Revise § 701.32(b)(5) to read as follows:
    § 701.32 Payment on shares by public units and nonmembers.

    (b) * * *

    (5) The regional director will provide a written determination on an exemption request within 30 calendar days after receipt of the request. The 30-day period will not begin to run until all necessary information has been submitted to the regional director. A credit union may request the regional director to reconsider a denied exemption request and/or file an appeal with the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    7. Revise § 701.34(a)(4) to read as follows:
    § 701.34 Designation of low income status; Acceptance of secondary capital accounts by low-income designated credit unions.

    (a) * * *

    (4) If NCUA determines a low-income designated federal credit union no longer meets the criteria for the designation, NCUA will notify the federal credit union in writing, and the federal credit union must, within five years, meet the criteria for the designation or come into compliance with the regulatory requirements applicable to federal credit unions that do not have a low-income designation. The designation will remain in effect during the five-year period. If a federal credit union does not requalify and has secondary capital or nonmember deposit accounts with a maturity beyond the five-year period, NCUA may extend the time for a federal credit union to come into compliance with regulatory requirements to allow the federal credit union to satisfy the terms of any account agreements. A federal credit union may request NCUA to reconsider a determination that it no longer meets the criteria for the designation and/or file an appeal with the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    8. Appendix B to part 701 is amended as follows: a. Section VII.D of Chapter 1 is revised. b. Section II.C.5 of Chapter 2 is revised. c. Section III.C.5 of Chapter 2 is revised. d. Section IV.C.5 of Chapter 2 is revised. e. Section V.C.5 of Chapter 2 is revised. f. Section IV.B of Chapter 3 is revised. g. Section II.C.6 of Chapter 4 is revised. h. Section II.D—Application for a Federal Charter of Chapter 4 is redesignated as Section II.D.2—Application for a Federal Charter and revised. i. Section III.D.6 of Chapter 4 is revised.

    The revisions read as follows:

    Appendix B to Part 701—Chartering and Field of Membership Manual Chapter 1—Federal Credit Union Chartering VII.D—Appeal of Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director Decision

    If the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director denies a charter application, in whole or in part, that decision may be appealed to the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    Before appealing, the prospective group may, within 30 days of the denial, provide supplemental information to the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director for reconsideration. A request for reconsideration should contain new and material evidence addressing the reasons for the initial denial. The Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director will have 30 days from the date of the receipt of the request for reconsideration to make a final decision. If the request is again denied, the applicant may proceed with the appeal process within 60 days of the date of the last denial.

    Chapter 2—Field of Membership Requirements for Federal Credit Unions II.C.5—Appeal of Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director Decision

    If the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director denies a field of membership expansion request, merger, or spin-off, that decision may be appealed to the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    Before appealing, the credit union may, within 30 days of the denial, provide supplemental information to the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director for reconsideration. A request for reconsideration should contain new and material evidence addressing the reasons for the initial denial. The Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director will have 30 days from the date of the receipt of the request for reconsideration to make a final decision. If the request is again denied, the applicant may proceed with the appeal process within 60 days of the date of the last denial.

    III.C.5—Appeal of Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director Decision

    If the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director denies a field of membership expansion request, merger, or spin-off is denied, that decision may be appealed to the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    Before appealing, the credit union may, within 30 days of the denial, provide supplemental information to the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director for reconsideration. A request for reconsideration should contain new and material evidence addressing the reasons for the initial denial or explain extenuating circumstances that precluded the inclusion of existing material evidence or information that should have been filed with the request for reconsideration. The Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director will have 30 days from the date of the receipt of the request for reconsideration to make a final decision. If the request is again denied, the applicant may proceed with the appeal process within 60 days of the date of the last denial. A petitioner may seek a second reconsideration based on new material evidence or information or extenuating circumstances that precluded the inclusion of such information in the previous request.

    IV.C.5—Appeal of Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director Decision

    If the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director denies a field of membership expansion request, merger, or spin-off, that decision may be appealed to the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    Before appealing, the credit union may, within 30 days of the denial, provide supplemental information to the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director for reconsideration. A request for reconsideration should contain new and material evidence addressing the reasons for the initial denial or explain extenuating circumstances that precluded the inclusion of existing material evidence or information that should have been filed with the request for reconsideration. The Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director will have 30 days from the date of the receipt of the request for reconsideration to make a final decision. If the request is again denied, the applicant may proceed with the appeal process within 60 days of the date of the last denial. A petitioner may seek a second reconsideration based on new material evidence or information or extenuating circumstances that precluded the inclusion of such information in the previous request.

    V.C.5—Appeal of Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director Decision

    If the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director denies a field of membership expansion request, merger, or spin-off, that decision may be appealed to the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    Before appealing, the credit union may, within 30 days of the denial, provide supplemental information to the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director for reconsideration. A request for reconsideration should contain new and material evidence addressing the reasons for the initial denial or explain extenuating circumstances that precluded the inclusion of existing material evidence or information that should have been filed with the request for reconsideration. The Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director will have 30 days from the date of the receipt of the request for reconsideration to make a final decision. If the request is again denied, the applicant may proceed with the appeal process within 60 days of the date of the last denial. A petitioner may seek a second reconsideration based on new material evidence or information or extenuating circumstances that precluded the inclusion of such information in the previous request.

    Chapter 3—Low-Income Credit Unions and Credit Unions Serving Underserved Areas IV.B—Appeal of Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director Decision

    If the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director denies an “underserved area” request, the federal credit union may appeal that decision to the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    Before appealing, the credit union may, within 30 days of the denial, provide supplemental information to the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director for reconsideration. A request for reconsideration should contain new and material evidence addressing the reasons for the initial denial or explain extenuating circumstances that precluded the inclusion of existing material evidence or information that should have been filed with the request for reconsideration. The Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director will have 30 days from the date of the receipt of the request for reconsideration to make a final decision. If the request is again denied, the applicant may proceed with the appeal process within 60 days of the date of the last denial. A petitioner may seek a second reconsideration based on new material evidence or information or extenuating circumstances that precluded the inclusion of such information in the previous request.

    Chapter 4—Charter Conversions II.C.6—Appeal of the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director Decision

    If a conversion to a federal charter is denied by the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director, the applicant credit union may appeal that decision to the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    Before appealing, the credit union may, within 30 days of the denial, provide supplemental information to the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director for reconsideration. A request for reconsideration should contain new and material evidence addressing the reasons for the initial denial or explain extenuating circumstances that precluded the inclusion of existing material evidence or information that should have been filed with the request for reconsideration. The Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director will have 30 days from the date of the receipt of the request for reconsideration to make a final decision. If the request is again denied, the applicant may proceed with the appeal process within 60 days of the date of the last denial. A petitioner may seek a second reconsideration based on new material evidence or information or extenuating circumstances that precluded the inclusion of such information in the previous request.

    II.D.2—Application for a Federal Charter

    When the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director has received evidence that the board of directors has satisfactorily completed the actions described above, the federal charter and new Certificate of Insurance will be issued.

    The credit union may then complete the conversion as discussed in the following section. A credit union may request the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director to reconsider a denial of a conversion application and/or appeal a denial to the NCUA Board. For more information, refer to Section II.C.6 of this chapter.

    III.D.6—Appeal of Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director Decision

    If the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director denies a conversion to a state charter, the federal credit union may appeal that decision to the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    Before appealing, the credit union may, within 30 days of the denial, provide supplemental information to the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director for reconsideration. The Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director will have 30 business days from the date of the receipt of the request for reconsideration to make a final decision. If the application is again denied, the credit union may proceed with the appeal process to the NCUA Board within 60 days of the date of the last denial by the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access Director.

    PART 703—INVESTMENT AND DEPOSIT ACTIVITIES 9. The authority citation for part 703 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    12 U.S.C. 1757(7), 1757(8), 1757(15).

    10. Revise § 703.20(d) to read as follows:
    § 703.20 Request for additional authority.

    (d) Appeal to NCUA Board. A federal credit union may request the regional director to reconsider any part of the determination made under paragraph (c) and/or file an appeal with the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    11. Revise § 703.111(d) to read as follows:
    § 703.111 NCUA approval.

    (d) Right to appeal. A federal credit union may request the regional director to reconsider a determination made under paragraph (a) or (c) of this section and/or file an appeal with the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    12. Revise § 703.112(c) to read as follows:
    § 703.112 Applying for additional products or characteristics.

    (c) A federal credit union may request the regional director to reconsider a denial of an application for additional products or characteristics and/or file an appeal with the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    13. Revise § 703.114(c) to read as follows:
    § 703.114 Regulatory violation.

    (c) A federal credit union may request the regional director to reconsider a revocation of derivatives authority or an order to terminate existing derivatives positions and/or file an appeal with the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    PART 705—COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT REVOLVING LOAN FUND ACCESS FOR CREDIT UNIONS 14. The authority citation for part 705 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    12 U.S.C. 1756, 1757(5)(D), and (7)(I), 1766, 1782, 1784, 1785 and 1786.

    15. Revise § 705.10(a) to read as follows:
    § 705.10 Appeals.

    (a) Appeals of non-qualification. A qualifying credit union whose application for a loan or technical assistance grant has been denied under § 705.7(f) for failure to satisfy any of the conditions set forth in § 705.7(c), including any additional criteria set forth in the related notice of funding opportunity, may request the Director of the Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives to reconsider the denial and/or appeal that decision to the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter, subject to the following limitations:

    (1) Scope. The scope of the Board's review is limited to the threshold question of qualification and not the issue of whether, among qualified applicants, a particular loan or technical assistance grant is funded.

    (2) Appeals procedures inapplicable. The foregoing procedure applies during an open period in which funds are available and NCUA has called for applications. NCUA will reject any application submitted during a period in which NCUA has not called for applications, except for applications submitted under § 705.8. Such rejections are not subject to appeal or review by the NCUA Board.

    PART 708a—BANK CONVERSIONS AND MERGERS 16. The authority citation for part 708a continues to read as follows: Authority:

    12 U.S.C. 1766, 1785(b), and 1785(c).

    17. Revise § 708a.108(d) to read as follows:
    § 708a.108 NCUA oversight of methods and procedures of membership vote.

    (d) A converting credit union may request the regional director to reconsider a determination regarding the methods and procedures of the membership vote and/or file an appeal with the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    18. Revise § 708a.304(h) to read as follows:
    § 708a.304 Notice to NCUA and request to proceed with member vote.

    (h) Appeal of adverse decision. If the regional director disapproves a merger proposal, the credit union may request reconsideration and/or file an appeal with the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    19. Revise § 708a.308(d) to read as follows:
    § 708a.308 NCUA approval of merger.

    (d) A merging credit union may request the regional director to reconsider the disapproval of a merger proposal and/or file an appeal with the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    PART 709—INVOLUNTARY LIQUIDATION OF FEDERAL CREDIT UNIONS AND ADJUDICATION OF CREDITOR CLAIMS INVOLVING FEDERALLY INSURED CREDIT UNIONS IN LIQUIDATION 20. The authority citation for part 709 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    12 U.S.C. 1757, 1766, 1767, 1786(h), 1787, 1788, 1789, 1789a.

    21. Revise § 709.7 to read as follows:
    § 709.7 Procedures for agency review or judicial determination of claims.

    (a) General. A claimant may either request agency review of an initial determination of the liquidating agent to disallow a claim or seek a de novo judicial determination of claims. In order to receive agency review of an initial determination, a claimant must request an administrative appeal before the NCUA Board. In order to seek a judicial determination, a claimant must file suit (or continue an action commenced before the appointment of the liquidating agent) in the district or territorial court of the United States for the district within which the credit union's principal place of business is located or the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.

    (b) Procedures for agency review. A claimant requesting an administrative appeal may request a hearing on the record conducted pursuant to the procedures set forth in subpart A of part 747 of this chapter. The determination of whether to agree to a request for a hearing on the record shall rest solely with the NCUA Board, which shall notify the claimant of its decision in writing. Alternatively, a claimant may request an appeal before the NCUA Board pursuant to the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    (c) Deadline to request agency review or file suit. A claimant must request agency review of an initial determination or file suit (or continue an action commenced before the appointment of the liquidating agent) within 60 days from the mailing of the initial determination or the expiration of the time period for the liquidating agent to determine claims under § 709.6(c), whichever is earlier. A request for a hearing on the record will suspend the 60-day period for filing a lawsuit (or continuing an action commenced before the appointment of the liquidating agent) from the date of the claimant's request to the date of the NCUA Board's decision regarding that request. If a claimant fails to either request a hearing on the record or an appeal to the Board or file suit (or continue an action commenced before the appointment of the liquidating agent) within the 60-day period, any disallowance of claims shall be final and the claimant shall have no further rights or remedies with respect to such claims.

    (d) Reconsideration. Prior to requesting agency review or filing or continuing a lawsuit, a claimant may request reconsideration of the initial determination of the liquidating agent in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter. The deadline to request agency review or file suit (or continue an action commenced before the appointment of the liquidating agent) in paragraph (c) of this section will be suspended from the date of the claimant's request to the date of the liquidating agent's decision regarding that request.

    22. Remove § 709.8 and redesignate §§ 709.9 through 709.13 as §§ 709.8 through 709.12, respectively. PART 741—REQUIREMENTS FOR INSURANCE 23. The authority citation for part 741 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    12 U.S.C. 1757, 1766(a), 1781-1790, and 1790d; 31 U.S.C. 3717.

    24. Revise § 741.11(d) to read as follows:
    § 741.11 Foreign branching.

    (d) Revocation of approval. A state regulator that revokes approval of the branch office must notify NCUA of the action once it issues the notice of revocation. The regional director may revoke approval of the branch office for failure to follow the business plan in a material respect or for substantive and documented safety and soundness reasons. If the regional director revokes the approval, the credit union will have six months from the date of the revocation letter to terminate the operations of the branch. The credit union can request reconsideration of the revocation and/or appeal this revocation to the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    PART 745—SHARE INSURANCE AND APPENDIX 25. The authority citation for part 745 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    12 U.S.C. 1752(5), 1757, 1765, 1766, 1781, 1782, 1787, 1789; title V, Pub. L. 109-351, 120 Stat. 1966.

    26. Revise § 745.201(c) to read as follows:
    § 745.201 Processing of insurance claims.

    (c) Reconsideration and appeals. An accountholder may request reconsideration from the Liquidating Agent of the initial determination and/or file an appeal with the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    27. Remove § 745.202 and redesignate § 745.203 as § 745.202. PART 746—APPEALS PROCEDURES THAT DO NOT BY LAW REQUIRE A BOARD HEARING 28. The authority citation for part 746 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    12 U.S.C. 1766, 1787, and 1789.

    29. Add subpart B to part 746 to read as follows: Subpart B—Appeals Procedures That Do Not by Law Require a Board Hearing Sec. 746.201 Authority, purpose, and scope. 746.202 Definitions. 746.203 Request for reconsideration. 746.204 Appeal to the Board. 746.205 Preliminary considerations regarding the appeal. 746.206 Administration of the appeal. 746.207 Procedures for oral hearing. Subpart B—Appeals Procedures That Do Not by Law Require a Board Hearing
    § 746.201 Authority, purpose, and scope.

    (a) Authority. This part is issued pursuant to sections 120, 207, and 209 of the Federal Credit Union Act (12 U.S.C. 1766, 1787, and 1789).

    (b) Purpose. Part 746, subpart B provides generally uniform procedures by which petitioners may appeal initial agency determinations to the NCUA Board under this part.

    (c) Scope. This part covers the appeal of initial agency determinations by a program office which the petitioner has a right to appeal to the NCUA Board under the following regulations: 701.14(e), 701.21(h)(3), 701.22(c), 701.23(h)(3), 701.32(b)(5), 701.34(a)(4), Appendix B to part 701, Chapters 1-4, §§ 703.20(d), 703.111(d), 703.112(c), 703.114(c), 705.10(a), 708a.108(d), 708a.304(h), 708a.308(d), 709.7, 741.11(d), 745.201(c), subpart J to part 747, and § 750.6(b).

    (d) This part does not apply to:

    (1) Actions by the agency to develop regulations, policy statements, or guidance documents;

    (2) Formal enforcement actions, the review of material supervisory determinations that come under the jurisdiction of NCUA's Supervisory Review Committee, or the appeal of any agency determination made pursuant to part 792 of this chapter;

    (3) Challenges to determinations under the prompt corrective action regime in parts 702 and 704 of this chapter and subparts L and M to part 747; and

    (4) Creditor claims arising from the liquidation of an insured credit union to the extent that the creditor has requested, and the NCUA Board has agreed, for the claim to be handled through a hearing on the record pursuant to 12 U.S.C. 1787(b)(7)(A) and subpart A of part 747 of this chapter.

    § 746.202 Definitions.

    For purposes of this part:

    Appeal means a process by which a petitioner may obtain the review by the Board of an initial agency determination.

    Board means the NCUA Board.

    Initial agency determination means an agency action taken at a level below the Board with respect to an application, request, claim, or other matter in which a determination of rights or resolution of issues is rendered and the party affected by the determination has been provided with a right to appeal the determination to the NCUA Board. The initial agency determination shall notify the Petitioner of the right to request reconsideration or to file an appeal with the Board, and shall include a description of applicable filing deadlines and time frames for agency responses. Agency determinations involving the formulation of a regulation, guidance document, or policy statement are excluded from this definition.

    Oral hearing means an opportunity, granted at the sole discretion of the Board, by which a petitioner may make an oral presentation to the Board concerning issues pertinent to an appeal.

    Petitioner means the person or entity seeking Board review of an initial agency determination.

    Program office means the office within NCUA responsible for making an initial agency determination.

    Special Counsel to the General Counsel means an individual (referred to herein as the “Special Counsel”) within NCUA's Office of General Counsel charged with administering appeals in accordance with the procedures set forth in this part.

    § 746.203 Request for reconsideration.

    (a) Reconsideration. Prior to submitting an appeal in accordance with § 746.204, the petitioner may in its sole discretion make a written request to the appropriate program office to reconsider the initial agency determination.

    (b) Deadline to file. A request for reconsideration must be sent to the appropriate program office within 30 calendar days of the date of the initial agency determination. A petitioner who does not file a request for reconsideration in a timely manner is considered to have waived the right to request reconsideration.

    (c) Special rule regarding change in officials. Notwithstanding paragraph (a) of this section, a request for reconsideration of an initial agency determination disapproving an individual serving as a director, committee member or senior executive officer pursuant to § 701.14 of this chapter must be sent to the appropriate program office within 15 calendar days of the date of the initial agency determination.

    (d) Content of request. Any request for reconsideration must include:

    (1) A statement of the facts on which the request for reconsideration is based;

    (2) A statement of the basis for the initial agency determination to which the petitioner objects and the alleged error in such determination; and

    (3) Any other support or evidence relied upon by the petitioner which was not previously provided to the appropriate program office.

    (e) Determination of program office. The appropriate program office will review its initial agency determination and reconsider the position initially taken in the light of the arguments and additional materials provided in the request for reconsideration. Within 30 calendar days of its receipt of a request for reconsideration, the appropriate program office shall issue its determination either affirming in whole or in part the initial agency determination or rejecting it.

    (f) Notice of determination. The appropriate program office shall provide its decision concerning the reconsideration request to the petitioner in writing, stating the reasons for the decision. The decision shall be treated as an initial agency determination for purposes of paragraph (a) of § 746.204.

    (1) In addition to a written statement of reasons for the decision, the appropriate program office shall provide the petitioner with written notice of the right to appeal the decision, in whole or in part, to the Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in § 746.204.

    (2) For creditor claims brought pursuant to sec. 207 of the Federal Credit Union Act (12 U.S.C. 1787), the appropriate program office shall provide the petitioner with written notice of the right, in the alternative to filing an appeal with the Board, to file suit or continue an action commenced before the appointment of the liquidating agent in the district or territorial court of the United States for the district within which the credit union's principal place of business was located or the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. For such claims, the 60-day period for filing a lawsuit in United States district court provided in 12 U.S.C. 1787(b)(6) shall be tolled from the date of the petitioner's request for reconsideration to the date of a determination pursuant to paragraph (e) of this section.

    (3) Upon a showing of extenuating circumstances, as determined by the program office in its reasonable judgment, a petitioner may be allowed to submit a second reconsideration request before filing an appeal with the Board. In such cases, the deadline for filing an appeal with the Board shall begin to run from the earlier of the date of the decision of the program office regarding the second reconsideration request or thirty calendar days from the date the second reconsideration request was accepted by the program office.

    (g) Failure to make a determination. Failure by the appropriate program office to issue a decision within the timeframe specified in paragraph (e) of this section shall be an affirmation of the original initial agency determination and shall be treated as an initial agency determination for purposes of paragraph (a) of § 746.204.

    (h) Burden of proof. The burden of proof to lead the appropriate program office to modify or reverse an initial agency determination shall rest solely upon the petitioner.

    § 746.204 Appeal to the Board.

    (a) Filing. Within 60 calendar days of the date of an initial agency determination, or, as applicable, a determination by the program office on any request for reconsideration, a petitioner may file an appeal seeking review of the determination by the Board. The request must be in writing and filed with the Secretary of the Board, National Credit Union Administration, 1775 Duke Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-3428.

    (b) Special rule regarding change in officials. Notwithstanding paragraph (a) of this section, an appeal of an initial agency determination disapproving an individual serving as a director, committee member or senior executive officer pursuant to § 701.14 of this chapter must be filed with the Secretary of the Board within 15 calendar days of the date of the initial agency determination.

    (c) Failure to file a timely appeal. Absent extenuating circumstances, as determined by the Board in its sole discretion, a petitioner who fails to file an appeal within the specified 60-day period shall be deemed to have waived all claims pertaining to the matters in issue.

    (d) Content of request. Any appeal filed with the Board must include:

    (1) A statement summarizing the underlying facts that form the basis of the appeal, together with copies of all pertinent documents, records, and materials on which the petitioner relies in support of the appeal.

    (2) A statement outlining why the petitioner objects to the conclusions in the initial agency determination, including any errors alleged to have been made by the program office in reaching its determination.

    (3) Any other materials or evidence relied upon by the petitioner that were not previously provided to the appropriate program office.

    (e) Burden of proof. The burden of proof to lead the Board to modify or reverse an initial agency determination shall rest solely upon the petitioner.

    (f) Amending or supplementing the appeal. Within 45 calendar days from the date the Secretary of the Board receives an appeal, the petitioner may amend or supplement the appeal in writing.

    (g) Request for oral hearing. In accordance with § 746.207, the petitioner may request an opportunity to appear before the Board, in person, or via teleconference or videoconference, to make an oral presentation in support of the appeal.

    § 746.205 Preliminary considerations regarding the appeal.

    (a) Initial review. The Special Counsel shall review all appeals filed with the Secretary of the Board and make a recommendation for their disposition to the Board. The Special Counsel shall have the authority to dismiss an appeal upon the request of the petitioner.

    (b) Supplemental materials. Within 30 calendar days from the date the Secretary of the Board receives an appeal, the Special Counsel may request in writing that the petitioner submit additional evidence in support of the appeal. If additional evidence is requested, the petitioner shall have 30 calendar days from the date of issuance of such request to provide the requested information. Failure by the petitioner to provide such information may result in denial of the petitioner's appeal. The Special Counsel shall have the authority to request additional information from any other relevant source in order to provide the Board with a full and complete administrative record. All requests by the Special Counsel pursuant to this section must be reasonable and designed to facilitate the processing of the appeal, not to delay it.

    § 746.206 Administration of the appeal.

    (a) De novo review by Special Counsel. After receipt of a timely appeal, the Special Counsel shall contact the relevant NCUA program office and request a complete set of all pertinent materials, including internal memoranda, correspondence, and records having a bearing on the initial agency determination being appealed. The Special Counsel will conduct an independent review of these materials, along with all materials submitted by the petitioner in support of the appeal. The Special Counsel will make a recommendation to the Board as to the appropriate disposition of the appeal after having evaluated the applicable legal arguments and considered the facts and circumstances that pertain to the appeal. As directed by the Board, the Special Counsel may provide his or her recommendation in writing to the Board and may make an oral presentation before the Board.

    (b) Determination on appeal. Within 90 calendar days from the date of receipt of an appeal by the Secretary of the Board, or within any extension of time as established by the Chairman, the Board shall issue a decision allowing, in whole or in part, or disallowing the petitioner's appeal. The decision by the Board shall be in writing, stating the reasons for the decision, and shall constitute a final agency action for purposes of chapter 7 of title 5 of the United States Code. Failure by the Board to issue a decision on an appeal within the 90-day period or within any extension of time as established by the Board shall be deemed to be a denial of the appeal.

    (c) Extension of time. In the discretion of the Chairman, the time frame for the Board's decision may be extended as the Chairman may consider necessary or appropriate for a full and fair consideration of the issues. For purposes of this paragraph (c), the Special Counsel is authorized to act on behalf of the Chairman and may, in that capacity, grant an extension of time.

    § 746.207 Procedures for oral hearing.

    (a) Request for oral hearing. The petitioner may request to appear before the Board to make an oral presentation in support of the appeal. The request must be submitted with the initial appeal documents and should be in the form of a separate written document titled “Request for Oral Hearing.” The request must show good cause for an oral presentation and state reasons why the appeal cannot be presented adequately in writing.

    (b) Action on the request. The Board shall determine whether to grant the request for oral hearing and shall direct the Special Counsel to serve notice of the Board's determination in writing to the petitioner. A request for oral hearing shall be granted with the approval of any Board member. The determination by a Board member approving an oral hearing must be taken within 20 days of the Board Secretary's receipt of the appeal.

    (c) Effect of denial. In the event no Board member approves of holding an oral hearing, the request for an oral hearing is deemed to be denied, and the appeal shall be reviewed and determined by the Board on the basis of the written record.

    (d) Procedures for oral hearing. The following procedures shall govern the conduct of any oral hearing:

    (1) Scheduling of oral hearing; location. The Special Counsel shall notify the petitioner and the program office of the date and time for the oral hearing, making sure to provide reasonable lead time and schedule accommodations. The oral hearing will be held at NCUA headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia; provided, however, that on his or her own initiative or at the request of the petitioner, the Chairman may in his or her sole discretion allow for a hearing to be conducted via teleconference or video conference facilities.

    (2) Appearances; representation. The petitioner and the NCUA program office shall submit a notice of appearance identifying the individual(s) who will be representing them at the oral presentation. The petitioner shall designate not more than two officers, employees, or other representatives (including counsel), unless otherwise authorized by the Chairman. The NCUA program office shall designate not more than two individuals (one of whom may be a litigation and enforcement attorney from NCUA's Office of General Counsel), unless otherwise authorized by the Chairman.

    (3) Conduct of oral hearing. The oral hearing shall consist entirely of oral presentations. The introduction of written evidence or witness testimony at the hearing shall not be permitted. The petitioner shall present first, followed by the NCUA program office. Each side shall be allotted a specified and equal amount of time for its presentation, of which a portion may be reserved for purposes of rebuttal. This time limit shall be set by the Board and will be based on the complexity of the appeal. Members of the Board may ask questions of any individual appearing before the Board.

    (4) Transcript. The oral hearing shall be on the record and transcribed by a stenographer, who will prepare a transcript of the proceedings. The stenographer will make the transcript available to the petitioner upon payment of the cost thereof.

    (e) Confidentiality. An oral hearing as provided for herein constitutes a meeting of the Board within the meaning of the Government in the Sunshine Act (5 U.S.C. 552b). The NCUA Chairman shall preside over the conduct of the oral hearing. The meeting will be closed to the public to the extent that one or more of the exemptions from public meetings apply as certified by NCUA's Office of General Counsel. The Board shall maintain the confidentiality of any information or materials submitted or otherwise obtained in the course of the procedures outlined herein, subject to applicable law and regulations.

    (f) Conclusion of the oral hearing. The Board shall take the oral presentations under advisement. The Board shall render its decision on the appeal in accordance with § 746.206.

    PART 747—ADMINISTRATIVE ACTIONS, ADJUDICATIVE HEARINGS, RULES OF PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE, AND INVESTIGATIONS 30. The authority citation for part 747 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    12 U.S.C. 1766, 1782, 1784, 1785, 1786, 1787, 1790a, 1790d; 15 U.S.C. 1639e; 42 U.S.C. 4012a; Pub. L. 101-410; Pub. L. 104-134; Pub. L. 109-351; Pub. L. 114-74.

    31. Remove and reserve subpart J of part 747. PART 750—GOLDEN PARACHUTE AND INDEMNIFICATION PAYMENTS 32. The authority citation for part 750 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    12 U.S.C. 1786(t).

    33. Revise § 750.6(b) to read as follows:
    § 750.6 Filing instructions; appeal.

    (b) A FICU whose request for approval by NCUA, in accordance with paragraph (a) of this section, has been denied may seek reconsideration of the request and/or file an appeal with the NCUA Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in subpart B to part 746 of this chapter.

    [FR Doc. 2017-11319 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7535-01-P
    NATIONAL CREDIT UNION ADMINISTRATION 12 CFR Part 746 RIN 3133-AE69 Supervisory Review Committee; Procedures for Appealing Material Supervisory Determinations AGENCY:

    National Credit Union Administration (NCUA).

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking.

    SUMMARY:

    The NCUA Board (Board) proposes to amend its procedures for appealing material supervisory determinations to the NCUA Supervisory Review Committee (SRC) to enhance due process and to be more consistent with the practices of the federal banking agencies. The proposed rule would expand the number of supervisory determinations appealable to the SRC and provide credit unions with the opportunity for additional review by the Director of the Office of Examinations and Insurance (E&I). The Board proposes to codify these procedures of our regulations.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before August 7, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments by any of the following methods (Please send comments by one method only):

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

    NCUA Web site: http://www.ncua.gov/Legal/Regs/Pages/PropRegs.aspx. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

    Email: Address to [email protected] Include “[Your name]—Comments on Supervisory Review Committee; Proposed Procedures for Appealing Material Supervisory Determinations” in the email subject line.

    Fax: (703) 518-6319. Use the subject line described above for email.

    Mail: Address to Gerard Poliquin, Secretary of the Board, National Credit Union Administration, 1775 Duke Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314-3428.

    Hand Delivery/Courier: Same as mail address.

    Public Inspection: You can view all public comments on NCUA's Web site at http://www.ncua.gov/Legal/Regs/Pages/PropRegs.aspx as submitted, except for those we cannot post for technical reasons. NCUA will not edit or remove any identifying or contact information from the public comments submitted. You may inspect paper copies of comments in NCUA's law library at 1775 Duke Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314, by appointment weekdays between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. To make an appointment, call (703) 518-6546 or send an email to [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Michael J. McKenna, General Counsel, Frank S. Kressman, Associate General Counsel, or Benjamin M. Litchfield, Staff Attorney, National Credit Union Administration, 1775 Duke Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314-3428 or telephone: (703) 518-6540.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    I. Background

    Section 309(a) of the Riegle Community Development and Regulatory Improvement Act of 1994 (Riegle Act) 1 required the NCUA and the federal banking agencies to establish independent intra-agency appellate processes to review material supervisory determinations.2 The Riegle Act also required the NCUA and the federal banking agencies to ensure that appeals of material supervisory determinations are heard and decided expeditiously and that appropriate safeguards exist for protecting appellants from retaliation by agency examiners.3

    1 Public Law 103-325, 108 Stat. 2160 (1994).

    2 12 U.S.C. 4806(a).

    3Id. at 4806(b)(1)-(2).

    On November 17, 1994, the Board published proposed Interpretive Ruling and Policy Statement (IRPS) 94-2 “Guidelines for the Supervisory Review Committee” in the Federal Register and solicited public comment.4 The Board proposed to establish a committee of five regular members consisting of NCUA's Executive Director, General Counsel, Director of E&I, a regional director, and one additional senior or Board staff member. The regional director was to be selected on a rotating basis every two years and an alternate regional director was to be designated to consider matters arising in the regular regional director member's region. The Executive Director was to serve as chair. The jurisdiction of the SRC was to be limited to matters specifically listed as material supervisory determinations in the Riegle Act.5

    4 59 FR 59437 (Nov. 17, 1994).

    5 The Riegle Act defines “material supervisory determination” to include determinations relating to: (1) Examination ratings; (2) the adequacy of loan loss reserve provisions; and (3) classifications on loans that are significant to a federally insured credit union. 12 U.S.C. 4806(f)(1)(A)(i)-(iii).

    After receiving and considering public comment, the Board adopted an IRPS and published it in the Federal Register on March 20, 1995 as IRPS 95-1.6 In the final IRPS, the Board reduced the size of the SRC from five members to three, with each member appointed by the NCUA Chairman. The jurisdiction of the SRC was limited to matters specifically listed as material supervisory determinations in the Riegle Act, although the Board reserved the right to expand the number of supervisory determinations appealable to the SRC after gaining some experience with the process. The final IRPS also clarified that material “examination ratings” included composite CAMEL ratings of 3, 4, or 5, as well as component ratings of those composite ratings.

    6 60 FR 14795 (Mar. 20, 1995).

    The Board revised the IRPS in 2002 to expand the jurisdiction of the SRC to include decisions by a regional director to revoke a credit union's authority under NCUA's then Regulatory Flexibility Program (RegFlex).7 In 2011, the Board revised the IRPS again to expand the jurisdiction of the SRC to include denials of Technical Assistance Grant (TAG) reimbursements by the Director of the Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives (OSCUI).8 This revision was published in the Federal Register as IRPS 11-1, “Supervisory Review Committee” on April 29, 2011. The Board has not made material changes to IRPS 11-1 since 2012, when it removed all references to RegFlex to reflect the elimination of that program.9

    7 67 FR 19778 (Apr. 23, 2002) (revocation of RegFlex authority).

    8 76 FR 3674 (Jan. 20, 2011) (interim final rule); 76 FR 23871 (Apr. 29, 2011) (final rule).

    9 77 FR 32004 (Aug. 29, 2012). RegFlex permitted some federal credit unions with advanced levels of net worth and consistently strong supervisory examination ratings to request exemptions, in whole or in part, from certain NCUA regulations. See 66 FR 58655 (Nov. 23, 2001). The Board eliminated this program in 2011, but made certain regulatory relief provisions previously available under the program widely available to all federal credit unions. See 77 FR 31981 (May 31, 2012).

    II. Summary of Proposed Rule

    The proposed rule would: (1) Expand the number of material supervisory determinations appealable to the SRC; (2) create an optional intermediate level of review before an appeal is brought to the SRC; and (3) change the nature and composition of the SRC. The proposed rule would be codified as Subpart A to part 746. The Board is requesting comment on all aspects of this proposed rule.

    A. Expansion of Supervisory Review Committee Jurisdiction

    Based on NCUA's experience in administering the current appellate process, the Board believes that it would be efficient and beneficial if the SRC appeals process is more transparent and objective and if more material supervisory determinations are appealable to the SRC. The proposed rule would, therefore, redefine the term “material supervisory determination” to include supervisory determinations that may affect the capital, earnings, operating flexibility, or that may otherwise affect the nature and level of supervisory oversight of a federally insured credit union (FICU). Certain exceptions would be made for material supervisory determinations that are specifically excluded by the Riegle Act or where other appeals procedures exist.

    B. Addition of Optional Intermediate Level of Review

    The Board is also proposing to add an optional intermediate level of review by the Director of E&I, or his or her designee, before a FICU appeals to the SRC. A decision by the Director of E&I would be made in writing with no opportunity for oral presentations from either the petitioner or the program office. The Director of E&I, in addition to his or her supervisory expertise, would have the ability to consult with the parties either jointly or separately before rendering a decision. If the FICU or program office is unsatisfied with the decision rendered by the Director of E&I, or his or her designee, either may appeal that decision to the SRC. This optional level of review provides enhanced due process to FICUs that wish to use it.

    C. Composition of the Supervisory Review Committee

    The proposed rule would restructure the SRC by creating a rotating SRC pool of not less than eight individuals appointed by the NCUA Chairman from among NCUA's senior staff in the regional and central offices. The Secretary of the Board would serve as the permanent SRC Chairman and would select three SRC members from this SRC pool to serve as the SRC for a particular appeal. As the permanent SRC Chairman, the Secretary of the Board would also be a member of the SRC pool and be eligible to serve as a member of the SRC for a particular appeal.10 The Special Counsel to the General Counsel (Special Counsel) would serve as a permanent non-voting member of each SRC to advise each committee on procedural and legal matters.

    10 With the inclusion of the SRC Chairman, the total number of NCUA senior staff in the SRC pool will be not less than nine; eight or more of which would be appointed by the NCUA Chairman.

    The SRC Chairman would not be permitted to select SRC members from the program office that rendered the material supervisory determination that is the subject of the appeal to hear that appeal. Likewise, in cases where the FICU requested review by the Director of E&I, staff from E&I would be ineligible to serve as SRC members for that appeal. The presence of two SRC members (physically, telephonically, or by video conference) would be required as a quorum, and a majority of votes present would be required for action on an appeal.

    D. Summary Chart of Proposed SRC Appeals Procedures

    Under the proposed rule, an appeal to the SRC would resemble the following decision tree:

    EP07JN17.001 III. Section by Section Analysis Part 746—Appeals Procedures Subpart A—Procedures for Appealing Material Supervisory Determinations

    The Board is proposing to create Subpart A to part 746 which would contain a comprehensive set of procedures to govern the appeal of material supervisory determinations. In a separate rulemaking issued together with this proposed rule, the Board is proposing significant changes to the administrative appeals process for matters that are outside of the jurisdiction of the SRC, which would be contained in Subpart B to part 746.

    Section 746.101 Authority, Purpose, and Scope

    Proposed § 746.101 states the legal authority for the Board to issue this proposed rule. As noted in the Background section above, the Board is issuing this proposed rule pursuant to its authority under § 309(a) of the Riegle Act.11 The Board is also issuing this proposed rule under its plenary regulatory authority in the Federal Credit Union Act.12

    11 12 U.S.C. 4806(a).

    12 12 U.S.C. 1766(a), 1789(a)(11).

    This section also states the purpose and scope of the rule. The scope of the proposed rule is limited to appeals of “material supervisory determinations,” a term defined by the regulation, and does not apply to appeals where the petitioner has been granted a right to a hearing on the record or appeals governed by Subpart B to part 746.

    Section 746.102 Definitions

    In § 746.102, the Board proposes to define certain terms. Unless defined, the Board expects FICUs and other affected parties to interpret terms or phrases consistently with the general definitions in § 700.2 of NCUA's regulations or, where not defined, according to their plain meaning.

    Petitioner

    The term “petitioner” refers to an entity, including a program office, requesting reconsideration or review, or filing an appeal pursuant to the procedures set forth in this subpart. As detailed more fully below, FICUs must first request reconsideration from the appropriate program office and then may request review from the Director of E&I. Either a FICU or a program office may appeal a partial or complete adverse decision by the Director of E&I, or his or her designee, to the SRC. Similarly, either a FICU or program office may appeal a partial or complete adverse decision by the SRC to the Board. Recognizing that, depending on the procedural posture of a particular appeal, the entity requesting review may be either a FICU or a program office, the Board is proposing to adopt a uniform term to describe all entities requesting agency action on a particular matter.

    Program Office

    The Board is proposing to adopt a uniform term “program office” to refer to all offices within NCUA responsible for making material supervisory determinations. Several NCUA offices are responsible for administering various NCUA regulations. Rather than use different terminology, the Board is proposing to adopt “program office” as a uniform term to describe all of the different NCUA offices responsible for making material supervisory determinations.

    Respondent

    The term “respondent” refers to an entity, including a program office, defending against an action by a petitioner. As noted above, depending on the procedural posture of a particular appeal, the entity requesting review may be either a FICU or a program office. Therefore, the Board is proposing to adopt a uniform term to describe all entities defending against a petitioner's action.

    Section 746.103 Material Supervisory Determination

    In response to proposed IRPS 94-2, several commenters argued that the additional disputes other than those specifically listed in the Riegle Act should be appealable to the SRC. In IRPS 95-1, however, the Board adopted a narrow definition of “material supervisory determination” in order to allow for the opportunity to gain experience with the SRC appeals process. Having administered SRC appeals for over 20 years, the Board has gained sufficient experience with the SRC appeals process and believes that expanding the jurisdiction of the SRC to be consistent with the federal banking agencies is now appropriate to provide FICUs with enhanced due process.

    Proposed § 746.103 defines the term “material supervisory determination” to mean a written decision by a program office (unless ineligible for appeal) that may significantly affect the capital, earnings, operating flexibility, or that may otherwise affect the nature and level of supervisory oversight of a FICU subject to the exclusions detailed below. Examples of material supervisory determinations include, but are not limited to, determinations related to the adequacy of loan loss reserve provisions; classification of loans and other assets that are significant to a FICU; and determinations related to restitution orders under the Truth in Lending Act (TILA). This proposed definition is similar to the definition used by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).13

    13 FDIC currently defines “material supervisory determination” to include, among other things, “any supervisory determination (unless otherwise not eligible for appeal) that may affect the capital, earnings, operating flexibility, or capital category for prompt corrective action purposes of an institution, or otherwise affect the nature and level of supervisory oversight accorded an institution.” 77 FR 17055 (Mar. 20, 2012).

    CAMEL Ratings

    The proposed definition limits the ability to appeal CAMEL ratings to composite ratings. Component ratings would no longer be appealable to the SRC unless those ratings may affect the nature and level of supervisory oversight of a FICU. For example, if eligibility for an extended examination cycle is contingent on a component rating of 1 or 2 in management, a management rating of 3 would be appealable to the SRC. Based on its experience with administering the current appellate process, the Board does not believe that component ratings are “material” in most cases if the FICU otherwise maintains an overall composite CAMEL rating of 1 or 2. Therefore, the proposed definition of “material supervisory determination” limits the ability of FICUs to appeal examination ratings only to those cases where the FICU has received a composite rating of 3, 4, or 5, or a component rating that could trigger supervisory action.

    TILA Restitution Orders

    The proposed rule specifically lists a restitution order pursuant to TILA as a material supervisory determination appealable to the SRC.14 Section 108 of TILA permits the Board, where appropriate, to order federal credit unions (FCUs) to make restitution to consumers that have been harmed by inaccurate disclosures.15 Determining whether restitution is appropriate often depends on whether there is a clear and consistent pattern or practice of violations, gross negligence, or a willful disregard for the requirements of TILA. Examiners are in the best position, in the first instance, to determine whether FCUs demonstrate clear and consistent patterns of TILA violations. Because review of these determinations requires consideration of the facts and circumstances before the examiner, the Board believes the SRC appeals process is the most appropriate method for considering these appeals before taking an appeal to the Board.

    14 On September 30, 2010, the Board delegated the authority to examine and supervise FCUs for compliance with consumer laws and regulations to the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access. This includes the authority to order an FCU to make restitution to consumers where permitted under TILA.

    15 15 U.S.C. 1607(e); see also 63 FR 47495 (Sept. 8, 1998).

    Exclusions From Coverage

    Notwithstanding the broad definition of “material supervisory determination,” the Board proposes to exclude certain material supervisory determinations from the jurisdiction of the SRC. The Riegle Act specifically excludes the decision to appoint a conservator or liquidating agent for a FICU and the decision to take prompt corrective action.16 The proposed rule also excludes enforcement-related actions and decisions, including appeals related to the underlying facts and circumstances that form the basis of a recommended or pending enforcement action, because NCUA has explicit rules governing the adjudication of these matters that provide affected parties with trial-like protections.17

    16 12 U.S.C. 4806(f)(1)(B).

    17See 12 CFR 747.

    The purpose of excluding enforcement-related actions and decisions (including the underlying facts and circumstances that form the basis of a pending formal enforcement action) is to ensure that the enforcement and SRC processes remain separate. Therefore, once an enforcement action is pending against a FICU, the proposed rule would prohibit FICUs from requesting review by the Director of E&I, or his or her designee, or appealing to the SRC any material supervisory determination that serves as the basis of that enforcement action. In other words, once an enforcement action is initiated, the SRC appeals process is suspended, regardless of how far along the FICU may be in that process, until the enforcement action is resolved.

    The proposed rule also excludes supervisory determinations for which other appeals procedures exist such as a capital classification for prompt corrective action purposes.18 This recognizes that there are some situations where the Board may, in its discretion, draft rules with explicit appeals procedures or explicitly state that certain matters are governed by particular appeals procedures set forth elsewhere in NCUA's regulations. In those cases, the Board expects FICUs to follow the explicit procedures stated in the regulation rather than attempting to appeal matters to the SRC.

    18See 12 CFR 747.2003.

    Section 746.104 General Provisions

    Proposed § 746.104 addresses a series of general procedural issues that apply throughout the proposed rule. These matters include the standard of review, the effect of an appeal on the commencement of enforcement actions, the effect of an appeal on applications for additional authority or waiver requests, and the tolling of timing requirements.

    Standard of Review

    The goal of the proposed rule is to enhance due process for credit unions and to apply NCUA's policies and practices fairly and consistently among all FICUs. Therefore, the Board proposes to place the burden of showing an error in an appealed determination on the petitioner. The objective of appellate review by the Director of E&I, the SRC, and the Board is to ensure that the appealed determination is correct and not just reasonable. If the Director of E&I, the SRC, or the Board, as applicable, determines that the appealed determination is incorrect upon their respective de novo review, then they will render a corrected determination.

    Dismissal and Withdrawal

    The proposed rule permits an appeal to be dismissed if it is not timely filed, if the basis for the appeal is not discernable, if the petitioner asks to withdraw the request in writing, or for reasons deemed appropriate by the reviewing authority, including, for example, if a petitioner in an appeal acts in bad faith by knowingly withholding evidence from the appropriate reviewing official. FICUs are encouraged to make good-faith efforts to resolve supervisory issues, including those concerning a material supervisory determination, at the most direct level possible, starting with their examiners or program office staff, and as efficiently as possible. If the Director of E&I, the SRC, or the Board, as applicable, finds that a FICU has engaged in bad faith by knowingly withholding evidence from an examiner, the program office, the Director of E&I, the SRC, or the Board, that withholding may serve as a basis for dismissing an appeal.

    Supervisory or Enforcement Actions Not Affected

    Under the proposed rule, an appeal at any level would not affect, delay, or impede any formal or informal supervisory or enforcement action in progress, nor would it affect NCUA's authority to take any supervisory or enforcement action against a FICU. Unless otherwise specified in a written decision on appeal, the material supervisory determination would remain in effect until the SRC appeals process has been exhausted.

    Additional Authority and Waiver Requests During the Pendency of an Appeal

    Likewise, under the proposed rule, an appeal would delay action on a waiver request or an application for additional authority that could be affected by the outcome of the appeal unless the FICU specifically requests that the waiver request or application for additional authority be considered notwithstanding the appeal. Any deadline for a program office to make a determination on a waiver request or application for additional authority set out in any part of NCUA's regulations would be suspended until the FICU has exhausted its administrative remedies under Subpart A or is no longer eligible to pursue an appeal. The purpose of this provision is to avoid situations where a FICU receives an adverse determination on a waiver request or an application for additional authority based on a material supervisory determination, only to have the material supervisory determination subsequently reversed by the SRC. It also prevents a waiver request or an application for additional authority from being automatically denied by operation of other parts of NCUA's regulations.

    Section 746.105 Procedures for Reconsideration From the Appropriate Program Office

    FICUs are encouraged to resolve supervisory issues with their examiners and other NCUA staff as efficiently as possible without the need to appeal supervisory matters to the SRC. The Board anticipates that most disputes will be handled in that manner. Proposed § 746.105 reflects this policy by requiring a FICU to request reconsideration of a material supervisory determination from the program office that rendered the determination and by establishing procedures that control such a request. The Director of E&I or the SRC would only assume jurisdiction over a material supervisory determination after the FICU has requested reconsideration from the appropriate program office and that program office has had an opportunity to render a decision on that request.

    As the Board explained in IRPS 94-2, it is NCUA policy that the SRC should only assume jurisdiction over a material supervisory determination after the FICU establishes that it has been unsuccessful in attempting to resolve the matter with the FICU's examiner or the appropriate program office. Early involvement by the Director of E&I or the SRC would be disruptive to the established organizational structure of NCUA and the relationships between FICUs and NCUA program offices. Therefore, the Board believes that requesting reconsideration from the appropriate program office should continue to be a mandatory part of the process of appealing a material supervisory determination to the SRC.

    Nevertheless, to avoid unnecessary delays, a second request for reconsideration will be treated as either a request for review by the Director of E&I or an appeal to the SRC as determined by the Secretary of the Board after consultation with the petitioner. While the reconsideration process promotes greater efficiency by facilitating dispute resolution at the program office level, allowing multiple requests for reconsideration would be inefficient. Upon receiving a second request for reconsideration, the program office will forward that to the Secretary of the Board to be processed as either a request for review pursuant to § 746.106 or an appeal pursuant to § 746.107.

    Section 746.106 Procedures for Requesting Review by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance

    Proposed § 746.106 provides an optional intermediate level of review by the Director of E&I, or his or her designee, before a FICU appeals a material supervisory determination to the SRC. The purpose of this intermediate level of review is to give FICUs another opportunity to resolve supervisory issues and to refine the issues that may be presented to the SRC and the Board on appeal. A request for review by the Director of E&I must be in writing and filed with the Secretary of the Board.

    The Board believes that the Director of E&I, or his or her designee, is the appropriate official for these intermediate reviews because E&I is NCUA's central office in charge of examination policy. E&I staff are expert in nearly all examination-related matters. Additionally, E&I is not in the direct line of supervision over any program office, thus avoiding any bias or predisposition to affirm a material supervisory determination by a program office.

    Under the proposed rule, the Director of E&I, or his or her designee, will issue a written decision based on written submissions by the FICU and the program office. The Director of E&I, or his or her designee, will have the ability to consult with parties jointly or separately before rendering a decision. Either the FICU or the program office will be able to appeal any adverse decision by the Director of E&I, or his or her designee, to the SRC.

    Neither party may make a request for reconsideration of the decision rendered by the Director of E&I, or his or her designee. If a party disagrees with the decision rendered by the Director of E&I, or his or her designee, the next step for further review is to file an appeal to the SRC.

    Section 746.107 Procedures for Appealing to the Supervisory Review Committee

    Proposed § 746.107 codifies many of the existing procedures contained in IRPS 11-1, as amended by IRPS 12-1, and expands on them by permitting the SRC Chairman to: (1) Adopt supplemental rules governing its operations; (2) order that material be kept confidential; and (3) consolidate appeals that present similar issues of law or fact. The Board believes that with the expanded jurisdiction of the SRC, additional procedures may be necessary to address operational issues. For example, after some experience with the appeals process, the SRC Chairman may determine that supplemental rules allowing all appeals to be presented through teleconference rather than in person at NCUA headquarters are necessary to ensure that appeals are conducted efficiently and promptly. The proposed rule grants the SRC Chairman the flexibility to adopt such supplemental rules.

    In addition, proposed § 746.107 creates an explicit right for a FICU to request that an appeal be conducted entirely based on the written record. As the Board explained in IRPS 95-1, the decision of whether to make a personal appearance should be up to the FICU involved in a particular appeal because FICUs are responsible for all costs associated with a personal appearance. While IRPS 95-1 attempted to save resources of both FICUs and NCUA by permitting the SRC Chairman to work out disputes via teleconference, the Board believes that more can be done to provide enhanced due process. Therefore, the proposed rule explicitly grants FICUs the right to request that an appeal be conducted entirely based on the written record.

    The proposed rule also requires the SRC Chairman to notify the Director of E&I of an appeal that involves the interpretation of material supervisory policy or generally accepted accounting principles and solicit input from E&I on how to interpret the policy or accounting principle that applies to the subject matter of the appeal. E&I staff are responsible for setting supervisory policy and interpreting accounting principles for NCUA. Therefore, it is appropriate to require the SRC to solicit input from the Director of E&I and E&I staff on these matters. Furthermore, the proposed rule requires the SRC Chairman to notify the General Counsel and solicit input from the Office of General Counsel on the interpretation of laws, including NCUA regulations, which may apply to the subject matter of an appeal. The Office of General Counsel serves as legal counsel for NCUA and, therefore, consultation with that office on these issues is necessary and proper.19

    19See 12 CFR 790.2(b)(7) (describing the role of the Office of General Counsel).

    Effect of Requesting Review by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance

    The proposed rule encourages a FICU to resolve supervisory matters as efficiently as possible by allowing the FICU to request an optional review by the Director of E&I, or his or her designee. Accordingly, for FICUs that have elected to request review by the Director of E&I, or his or her designee, the proposed rule suspends the deadline to file an appeal with the SRC until after the Director of E&I, or his or her designee, has rendered a decision. In practice, this means that a FICU could potentially delay the deadline to file an appeal with the SRC until after the Director of E&I, or his or her designee, has considered the matter. While this could potentially give FICUs additional time to file an appeal with the SRC, the Board believes that the potential benefits of reduced caseloads at the SRC and Board levels exceed any potential risks of delay, especially because material supervisory determinations would remain in place during the pendency of a review by the Director of E&I, or his or her designee. Additionally, during this time, NCUA would not be prohibited from taking supervisory or enforcement actions.

    Section 746.108 Composition of Supervisory Review Committee

    The Board proposes to create a rotating pool of not less than eight individuals appointed by the NCUA Chairman from among NCUA's senior staff in the regional offices, the Office of the Executive Director (OED), the Office of Examination and Insurance (E&I), the Office of National Examination and Supervision (ONES), the Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives (OSCUI), and the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access (OCFPA) to serve with the SRC Chairman as a SRC pool from which individual members may be selected by the SRC Chairman to serve as the SRC for a particular appeal.20 Each member of the SRC pool, with the exception of the SRC Chairman, will serve for a one-year term and is eligible to be reappointed for additional terms. A regional director, associate regional director, executive director, deputy executive director, a general counsel, and a senior policy advisor or chief of staff to a Board Member will be ineligible to serve as a member of the SRC pool.

    20 With the inclusion of the SRC Chairman, the total number of NCUA senior staff in the SRC pool will be not less than nine; eight or more of which would be appointed by the NCUA Chairman.

    The Secretary of the Board will serve as permanent SRC Chairman and will select three SRC members (one of whom may be the SRC Chairman) from this SRC pool to serve as the SRC for each particular appeal. The Special Counsel will serve as a permanent non-voting member of the SRC to advise the SRC on procedural and legal matters. When selecting SRC members to hear a particular appeal, the SRC Chairman will consider any real or apparent conflicts of interest that may impact the SRC member's objectivity as well as that individual's experience with the subject matter of the appeal. Members of the SRC pool from the program office rendering the material supervisory determination that is the subject of the appeal will be ineligible to serve as SRC members for that appeal. Likewise, E&I staff will be ineligible to serve as SRC members for appeals where the FICU is appealing a determination following a request for review by the Director of E&I.

    The Board believes that creating a rotating SRC pool of individuals eligible to serve on the SRC from among NCUA's senior staff in the regional offices, OED, E&I, ONES, OSCUI, and OCFPA is appropriate because these individuals are well-suited to understand supervisory issues and render consistent, well-reasoned decisions. Senior staff from the regional offices, E&I, and ONES are actively engaged in examination-related activities and have in-depth knowledge of current trends in the credit union industry. Likewise, senior staff from OSCUI have specialized knowledge of the needs of small and low-income FICUs. Moreover, senior staff from OCFPA have specialized knowledge of the latest issues in chartering, field of membership, and consumer protection. Each of these program offices brings a unique and diverse set of skills that will greatly benefit the SRC appeals process.

    In addition, expanding the number of individuals eligible to serve on the SRC enhances due process by eliminating the potential for conflicts of interest. Having a wider pool from which to draw when selecting SRC members allows the SRC Chairman to avoid conflicts of interest by selecting SRC members without any direct ties to the program office that rendered the material supervisory determination. Moreover, having additional members in the SRC pool means that the Board can expand the jurisdiction of the SRC, while still providing an expeditious process for a FICU to appeal a material supervisory determination.

    Nevertheless, the Board continues to believe that regional directors and associate regional directors should not serve in the pool of individuals eligible to serve on the SRC. The Riegle Act mandated NCUA to establish an “independent appellate process,” which it defines as “a review by an agency official who does not directly or indirectly report to the agency official who made the material supervisory determination under review.” 21 This reflects a clear Congressional intent to afford a FICU a separate and meaningful appeal of a material supervisory determination. As the Board explained in IRPS 95-1, allowing regional directors and associate regional directors to serve as members of the SRC pool would place these individuals in the untenable position of potentially reviewing material supervisory determinations made by their colleagues. While the Board does not believe that these individuals would be predisposed to support other regional directors or associate regional directors, the Board wishes to eliminate any perception that the SRC appeals process may be biased against FICUs.

    21 12 U.S.C. 4806(f)(2).

    Likewise, the Board continues to believe that the executive director, deputy executive director, policy advisors and chiefs of staff to Board Members should not serve as members of the SRC pool.22 These individuals serve in positions that report to and represent the interests of Board Members. In order to ensure a separate and meaningful final appeal to the Board, these individuals should not serve as members of the SRC pool. Likewise, the Board believes that attorneys from the Office of General Counsel should not serve as members of the SRC pool. These individuals are responsible for providing legal advice to NCUA including the SRC and the Board. In order to prevent any conflicts of interest, these individuals should not serve as members of the SRC pool.

    22See IRPS 95-1.

    Section 746.109 Procedures for Appealing to the NCUA Board

    This section of the proposed rule describes the filings that must be made with the Secretary of the Board in order to appeal a decision by the SRC to the Board. It also addresses timing requirements. A request for appeal must include a statement of facts on which the appeal is based, a statement of the petitioner's principal objections to the SRC's decision, and, for FICUs, a certification that the FICU's board of directors has authorized the appeal to be filed. The proposed rule cross references procedures set out in § 746.111 that must be followed to request an oral hearing.

    Granting an Appeal

    Consistent with IRPS 11-1, as amended by IRPS 12-1, appeals to the Board would not be granted as a matter of right. Rather, at least one Board Member would be required to agree to hear an appeal from a decision by the SRC within 20 calendar days from the date the petitioner first filed the appeal with the Secretary of the Board. The purpose of this provision is to reserve Board review for only those cases involving significant issues of supervisory policy that cannot be addressed at the several lower appellate levels provided by this rule or through a request for reconsideration from the appropriate program office. At this stage, petitioners would have had the opportunity to obtain potentially three levels of review (i.e., reconsideration from the program office, review by the Director of E&I or his or her designee, and appeal to the SRC). Therefore, the Board believes that limiting Board review to only certain matters is not unfairly prejudicial. Furthermore, if a request for an appeal is denied, the decision of the SRC would be treated as a final agency action permitting the petitioner to seek judicial review in federal court under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA).

    If a request for an appeal is granted, the Board generally will decide the matter based solely on written submissions by the parties. However, if a request for an appeal is granted with an oral hearing, the Secretary of the Board would notify the parties of the date and time where the appeal shall be heard. As discussed in more detail below, an oral hearing may be either in person (including through counsel) or through video or teleconference.

    Within 15 calendar days from the date the Secretary of the Board receives an appeal, the petitioner may amend or supplement the appeal in writing. The respondent would then be permitted 15 calendar days to respond to any supplemental filings.

    Certain Actions Not Reviewable

    Under the proposed rule, petitioners are permitted to request an appeal to the Board in all circumstances except denials of TAG reimbursements. As the Board explained in its rulemaking regarding the Community Development Revolving Loan Fund, TAG reimbursements are subject to the discretion of the Director of OSCUI and availability of funds.23 Therefore, such determinations are not subject to administrative appeal to the Board. However, whether a FICU meets the qualifications set forth in a Notice of Funding Opportunity, which is different from whether the FICU should be granted a TAG reimbursement, is subject to administrative appeal to the Board under separate procedures and not through the SRC appeals process.

    23 76 FR 67583, 67586 (Nov. 11, 2011).

    Section 746.110 Administration of the Appeal

    Proposed § 746.110 sets out the standard procedures followed by the Board upon receipt of a timely appeal. These proposed procedures are, in some respects, a codification of informal practices that the Board currently follows when reviewing other types of appeals that were not heard by the SRC. To date, the Board has only received one appeal of a decision by the SRC.

    Proposed paragraph (b) requires the Board to render a written decision stating the reasons for the decision within 90 calendar days, unless extended by the Board, from the date of receipt of an appeal by the Secretary of the Board. Such a decision would constitute a final agency action permitting the petitioner to seek judicial review in federal court under the APA. If the Board does not reach a decision within 90 calendar days, unless otherwise extended, from the date of receipt, then it would be treated as a denial. Building this deadline into the rule ensures that the Board has adequate time to decide a matter on appeal while avoiding any undue prejudice to petitioners from unnecessary delays.

    Section 746.111 Oral Hearing

    This section of the proposed rule sets out the process for requesting and conducting an oral hearing. The Board recognizes that, in some unusual cases, the opportunity to make an oral presentation in person (or through video or teleconference) is necessary or useful to ensure a thorough understanding of the issues in a case. Therefore, the Board proposes to allow a FICU to make an oral presentation to the Board where at least one Board Member agrees with the petitioner that good cause exists for holding an oral hearing. Individual Board Members must act on such a request within 20 days of receiving a request for an oral hearing.

    Request for Oral Hearing; Action on Request; Effect of Denial

    Paragraph (a) describes the process for requesting an oral hearing. The request must accompany the notice of appeal itself, set out in a separate document titled “Request for Oral Hearing.” The petitioner would be required to show good cause for holding an oral hearing, stating reasons why the case cannot be presented adequately with just written statements. Proposed paragraph (b) specifies that an oral hearing would be scheduled provided at least one Board Member agrees to the oral hearing. The Secretary of the Board would notify the parties of the Board's determination regarding the request for an oral hearing. Proposed paragraph (c) specifies that, in the event the request does not receive the support of at least one Board Member, the appeal will proceed on the basis of written submissions.

    Procedures for Oral Hearing—Appearances; Representation

    At an oral hearing, the petitioner would be permitted to be represented by one or more representatives of its choice (but not more than two without prior approval by the NCUA Chairman). This proposed paragraph recognizes the general right granted in the APA for individuals appearing in person before an agency to be “accompanied, represented, and advised by counsel or, if permitted by the agency, by other qualified representative[s].” 24 In general, courts have found the right to counsel to be a fundamental aspect of procedural due process in both informal and formal agency adjudications.25

    24 5 U.S.C. 555(b).

    25See Goldberg v. Kelly, 397 U.S. 254, 270 (1970) (“The right to be heard would be, in many cases, of little avail if it did not comprehend the right to be heard by counsel. We do not say that counsel must be provided at the pre-termination hearing, but only that the recipient must be allowed to retain an attorney if he so desires. Counsel can help delineate the issues, present factual contentions in an orderly manner, conduct cross-examination, and generally safeguard the interests of the recipient.”).

    Conduct of Oral Hearing

    Proposed paragraph (d)(3) permits the use of presentations based on written evidence submitted as part of the appeal documents. The submission of written evidence or witness testimony at the oral hearing would not be permitted. The petitioner would be given the opportunity to argue first, followed by a representative of the opposing party.

    Section 746.112 Retaliation Prohibited

    The Riegle Act required the Board to appoint an official to handle any problems FICUs may have as a result of appealing a material supervisory determination.26 NCUA policy prohibits any retaliation, abuse, or retribution by NCUA personnel against a FICU in this regard. FICUs that believe they are victims of impermissible retaliation would be able to file complaints with the NCUA Office of Inspector General, who will investigate such claims and recommend appropriate action.

    26 12 U.S.C. 4806(d).

    Section 746.113 Coordination With State Supervisory Authority

    In the event that a material supervisory determination becomes the subject of a request for review by the Director of E&I and is the joint product of NCUA and a state supervisory authority (SSA), proposed § 746.113 requires the Director of E&I, or his or her designee, to promptly notify the SSA of the request for review, provide the SSA with a copy of the request and any other related materials, solicit the SSA's views regarding the merits of the request before making a determination, and notify the SSA of the Director's determination.

    In the event that an appeal is subsequently filed with the SRC, the SRC is required to notify the SSA of the appeal, provide the SSA with a copy of the appeal and any other related materials, solicit the SSA's views regarding the merits of the appeal before making a determination, and notify the SSA of the SRC's determination. Once the SRC issues a determination, any other issues not addressed by the SRC that may remain between the FICU and the SSA would be left to those parties to resolve. Similar procedures would be followed for appeals to the Board.

    IV. Regulatory Procedures Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act requires NCUA to prepare an analysis to describe any significant economic impact a regulation may have on a substantial number of small entities (primarily those under $100 million in assets).27 This rule has no economic impact on small credit unions because it only impacts internal NCUA procedures and provides voluntary options for credit unions. Accordingly, NCUA certifies the rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small credit unions.

    27 5 U.S.C. 603(a).

    Paperwork Reduction Act

    The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA) applies to rulemakings in which an agency by rule creates a new paperwork burden on regulated entities or increases an existing burden.28 For purposes of the PRA, a paperwork burden may take the form of a reporting or recordkeeping requirement, both referred to as information collections. Information collected as part of a civil action or administrative action, investigation, or audit, however, is not considered an information collection for purposes of the PRA.

    Proposed Subpart A to part 746 establishes procedures for appealing material supervisory determinations to the NCUA Supervisory Review Committee. Because the only paperwork burden in this proposed rule relates to activities that are not considered to be information collections, NCUA has determined that this rule is exempt from the requirements of the PRA.29

    28 44 U.S.C. 3507(d); 5 CFR 1320.

    29 44 U.S.C. 3518(c)(1)(B)(ii).

    Assessment of Federal Regulations and Policies on Families

    NCUA has determined that this rule will not affect family well-being within the meaning of § 654 of the Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act, 1999.30

    30 Public Law 105-277, 654, 112 Stat. 2681, 2681-581 (1998).

    Executive Order 13132

    Executive Order 13132 encourages independent regulatory agencies to consider the impact of their actions on state and local interests.31 NCUA, an independent regulatory agency as defined in 44 U.S.C. 3502(5), voluntarily complies with the executive order to adhere to fundamental federalism principles. The rule 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. NCUA has therefore determined that this rule does not constitute a policy that has federalism implications for purposes of the executive order.

    31 64 FR 43255 (Aug. 4, 1999).

    List of Subjects 12 CFR Part 746

    Administrative practice and procedure, Claims, Credit Unions, Investigations.

    By the National Credit Union Administration Board on May 25, 2017. Gerard Poliquin, Secretary of the Board.

    For the reasons discussed above, the NCUA Board proposes to add Subpart A to 12 CFR part 746 as follows:

    PART 746—APPEALS PROCEDURES 1. The authority citation for part 746 reads as follows: Authority:

    12 U.S.C. 1766, 1787, and 1789.

    2. Add a new subpart A to read as follows: Subpart A—Procedures for Appealing Material Supervisory Determinations Sec. 746.101 Authority, Purpose, and Scope. 746.102 Definitions. 746.103 Material Supervisory Determinations. 746.104 General Provisions. 746.105 Procedures for Reconsideration from the Appropriate Program Office. 746.106 Procedures for Requesting Review by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance. 746.107 Procedures for Appealing to the Supervisory Review Committee. 746.108 Composition of Supervisory Review Committee. 746.109 Procedures for Appealing to the NCUA Board. 746.110 Administration of the Appeal. 746.111 Oral Hearing. 746.112 Retaliation Prohibited. 746.113 Coordination with State Supervisory Authority.
    § 746.101 Authority, Purpose, and Scope.

    (a) Authority. This subpart is issued pursuant to section 309 of the Riegle Community Development and Regulatory Improvement Act of 1994 (12 U.S.C. 4806), which requires the NCUA Board to establish an independent intra-agency process to review appeals of material supervisory determinations made by agency officials, and sections 120 and 209 of the Federal Credit Union Act (12 U.S.C. 1766, 1789).

    (b) Purpose. The purpose of this subpart is to establish an expeditious review process for federally insured credit unions to appeal material supervisory determinations to an independent supervisory panel and, if applicable, to the NCUA Board. This subpart is also intended to establish appropriate safeguards for protecting appellants from retaliation by agency officials.

    (c) Scope. This subpart applies to the appeal of material supervisory determinations made by agency officials. This subpart does not apply to the appeal of determinations for which an independent right to appeal exists such as a decision to appoint a conservator or liquidating agent for a federally insured credit union or to take prompt corrective action pursuant to section 216 of the Federal Credit Union Act (12 U.S.C. 1790d) and part 702 of this chapter. This subpart also does not apply to enforcement-related actions and decisions, including determinations and the underlying facts and circumstances that form the basis of a pending enforcement action.

    § 746.102 Definitions.

    For purposes of this subpart:

    Board means the NCUA Board.

    Committee means the Supervisory Review Committee.

    Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance has the same meaning as used in § 790.2 of this chapter but also includes individuals designated by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance from among senior Office of Examination and Insurance staff to handle requests for review by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance pursuant to § 746.106 of this subpart.

    Material Supervisory Determination is defined in § 746.103 of this subpart.

    Petitioner means an entity, including a program office, requesting reconsideration, review, or filing an appeal pursuant to the procedures set forth in this subpart.

    Program Office means the office within NCUA responsible for making a material supervisory determination.

    Respondent means an entity, including a program office, defending against an action by a petitioner.

    Special Counsel to the General Counsel or Special Counsel means an individual within the Office of General Counsel providing legal or procedural advice to the Committee in accordance with the procedures set forth in this subpart.

    § 746.103 Material Supervisory Determination.

    (a) Material Supervisory Determination. The term “material supervisory determination” means a written decision by a program office that may significantly affect the capital, earnings, operating flexibility, or that may otherwise affect the nature and level of supervisory oversight of a federally insured credit union. The term includes, but is not limited to:

    (1) Composite examination ratings of 3, 4, or 5;

    (2) Determinations relating to the adequacy of loan loss reserve provisions;

    (3) Classifications of loans and other assets that are significant to a federally insured credit union;

    (4) Restitution orders pursuant to the Truth in Lending Act (15 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.) and its implementing regulation, Regulation Z (12 CFR part 1026); and

    (5) Determinations on a waivers request or an application for additional authority where independent appeal procedures have not been specified in other NCUA regulations.

    (b) Exclusions from Coverage. The term “material supervisory determination” does not include:

    (1) Composite examination ratings of 1 or 2;

    (2) Component examination ratings unless such ratings have a significant adverse effect on the nature and level of supervisory oversight of a federally insured credit union;

    (3) The scope and timing of supervisory contacts;

    (4) Decisions to appoint a conservator or liquidating agent for a federally insured credit union;

    (5) Decisions to take prompt corrective action pursuant to section 216 of the Federal Credit Union Act (12 U.S.C. 1790d) and part 702 of this chapter;

    (6) Enforcement-related actions and decisions, including determinations and the underlying facts and circumstances that form the basis of a pending enforcement action;

    (7) Preliminary examination conclusions communicated to a federally insured credit union before a final exam report or other written communication is issued;

    (8) Formal and informal rulemakings pursuant to the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 500 et seq.);

    (9) Requests for NCUA records or information under the Freedom of Information Act (5 U.S.C. 552) and part 792 of this chapter and the submission of information to NCUA that is governed by this statute and this regulation; and

    (10) Determinations for which other appeals procedures exist.

    § 746.104 General Provisions.

    (a) Standard of Review. The burden of showing an error in an appealed determination shall rest solely with the petitioner. Review shall be de novo.

    (b) Dismissal and Withdrawal. Any appeal under this subpart may be dismissed by written notice if it is not timely filed; if the basis for the appeal is not discernable; if the petitioner asks to withdraw the request in writing; if any party fails to provide additional information requested pursuant to any authority granted in this subpart; if any party engages in bad faith; or for reasons deemed appropriate by the reviewing authority.

    (c) Discovery. No provision of this subpart is intended to create any right to discovery or similar process.

    (d) Supervisory or Enforcement Actions Not Affected. No provision of this subpart is intended to affect, delay, or impede any formal or informal supervisory or enforcement action in progress or affect NCUA's authority to take any supervisory or enforcement action against a federally insured credit union.

    (e) Additional Authority and Waiver Requests During the Pendency of an Appeal. A program office will not consider a waiver request or an application for additional authority that could be affected by the outcome of an appeal of a material supervisory determination unless specifically requested by the federally insured credit union appealing the material supervisory determination. Any deadline for a program office to decide a waiver request or an application for additional authority set forth in any part of this chapter shall be suspended until the federally insured credit union appealing a material supervisory determination has exhausted its administrative remedies under this subpart or may no longer appeal the material supervisory determination, whichever is later.

    § 746.105 Procedures for Reconsideration From the Appropriate Program Office.

    (a) Reconsideration. A federally insured credit union must make a written request for reconsideration from the appropriate program office prior to requesting review by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance pursuant to § 746.106 or filing an appeal with the Committee pursuant to § 746.107. Such a request must be made within 30 calendar days after receiving an examination report containing a material supervisory determination or other official written communication of a material supervisory determination. A request for reconsideration must be in writing and filed with the appropriate program office.

    (b) Content of Request. Any request for reconsideration must include:

    (1) A statement of the facts on which the request for reconsideration is based;

    (2) A statement of the basis for the material supervisory determination to which the petitioner objects and the alleged error in such determination; and

    (3) Any other evidence relied upon by the petitioner that was not previously provided to the appropriate program office making the material supervisory determination.

    (c) Decision. Within 30 calendar days after receiving a request for reconsideration, the appropriate program office shall issue a written decision, stating the reasons for the decision, and provide written notice of the right to file a request for review by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance pursuant to § 746.106 or file an appeal with the Committee pursuant to § 746.107. If a written decision is not issued within 30 calendar days, the request for reconsideration will be deemed to have been denied.

    (d) Subsequent Requests for Reconsideration. Any subsequent request for reconsideration following an initial request made pursuant to this section will be treated as a request for review by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance pursuant to § 746.106 or an appeal to the Committee pursuant to § 746.107 as determined by the Secretary of the Board after consultation with the federally insured credit union.

    § 746.106 Procedures for Requesting Review by the Director of Office of Examination and Insurance.

    (a) Request for Review. Prior to filing an appeal with the Committee pursuant to § 746.107, but after receiving a written decision by the appropriate program office in response to a request for reconsideration pursuant to § 746.105, a federally insured credit union may make a written request for review by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance of the program office's material supervisory determination. Such a request must be made within 30 calendar days after a final decision on reconsideration is made by the appropriate program office. A request for review must be in writing and filed with the Secretary of the Board, National Credit Union Administration, 1775 Duke Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-3428.

    (b) Content of Request. Any request for review by a federally insured credit union must include:

    (1) A statement that the federally insured credit union is requesting review by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance;

    (2) A statement of the facts on which the request for review is based;

    (3) A statement of the basis for the material supervisory determination to which the federally insured credit union objects and the alleged error in such determination;

    (4) Any other evidence relied upon by the federally insured credit union that was not previously provided to the appropriate program office making the material supervisory determination; and

    (5) A certification that the board of directors of the federally insured credit union has authorized the request for review to be filed.

    (c) Conduct of Review. Review of a material supervisory determination shall be based on the written submissions provided under paragraph (b) of this section. The Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance may request additional information from the appropriate program office or the federally insured credit union within 15 calendar days after the Secretary of the Board receives a request for review by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance. The relevant party must submit the requested information to the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance within 15 calendar days after receiving such request for additional information. The Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance may consult with the parties jointly or separately before rendering a decision and may solicit input from any other pertinent program office as necessary.

    (d) Decision. Within 30 calendar days after the Secretary of the Board receives a request for review, the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance shall issue a written decision, stating the reasons for the decision, and provide written notice of the right to file an appeal with the Committee pursuant to § 746.107. The 30 calendar day deadline is extended by the time period during which the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance is gathering additional information. If a written decision is not issued within 30 calendar days, as extended by additional time during which the information is being gathered, the request for review will be deemed to have been denied.

    (e) Subsequent Requests for Review. No party may request reconsideration of the decision rendered by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance. Any subsequent request for review following the rendering of a decision by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance will be treated as an appeal to the Committee.

    § 746.107 Procedures for Appealing to the Supervisory Review Committee.

    (a) Request for Appeal. After receiving a written decision by the appropriate program office in response to a request for reconsideration pursuant to § 746.105, a petitioner may file an appeal with the Committee. Such an appeal must be filed within 30 calendar days after receiving a written decision by the appropriate program office on reconsideration or, if the petitioner requests review by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance pursuant to § 746.106, within 30 calendar days after a final decision is made by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance. An appeal must be in writing and filed with the Secretary of the Board, National Credit Union Administration, 1775 Duke Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-3428.

    (b) Content of Appeal. Any appeal must include:

    (1) A statement that the petitioner is filing an appeal with the Committee;

    (2) A statement of the facts on which the appeal is based;

    (3) A statement of the basis for the determination to which the petitioner objects and the alleged error in such determination;

    (4) Any other evidence relied upon by the petitioner that was not previously provided to the appropriate program office or, if applicable, the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance; and

    (5) For federally insured credit unions, a certification that its board of directors has authorized the appeal to be filed.

    (c) Conduct of Appeal. The following procedures shall govern the conduct of an appeal to the Committee:

    (1) Submission of Written Materials. The Committee may request additional information from either of the parties within 15 calendar days after the filing of an appeal. The parties must submit the requested information to the Committee within 15 calendar days after receiving a request for additional information.

    (2) Oral Hearing; Duration; Location. Except where a federally insured credit union, as either petitioner or respondent, has requested that an appeal be based entirely on the written record, an appeal shall also consist of oral presentations to the Committee at NCUA headquarters. The introduction of written evidence or witness testimony may also be permitted at the oral hearing. The petitioner shall argue first. Each side shall be allotted a specified and equal amount of time for its presentation, of which a portion may be reserved for purposes of rebuttal. This time limit shall be set by the Committee and will be based on the complexity of the appeal. Committee members may ask questions of any individual appearing before it.

    (3) Appearances; Representation. The parties shall submit a notice of appearance identifying the individual(s) who will be representing them in the oral presentation. The federally insured credit union shall designate not more than two officers, employees, or other representatives including counsel, unless authorized by the Committee. The program office shall designate not more than two individuals, one of whom may be an enforcement attorney from NCUA's Office of General Counsel, unless authorized by the Committee.

    (d) Decision. Within 30 calendar days after the oral presentation of the appeal to the Committee, the Committee shall issue a decision in writing, stating the reasons for the decision, and provide the petitioner with written notice of the right to file an appeal with the NCUA Board (if applicable). If a federally insured credit union has requested that an appeal be entirely based on the written record, the Committee shall issue a decision within 30 calendar days from the date of receipt of an appeal by the Secretary of the Board. The 30 calendar day deadline to decide an appeal based entirely on the written record is extended by any time period during which the Committee is gathering additional information pursuant to paragraph (c)(1) of this section.

    (e) Publication. The Committee shall publish its decisions on NCUA's Web site with appropriate redactions to protect confidential or exempt information. In cases where redaction is insufficient to prevent improper disclosure, published decisions may be presented in summary form. Published decisions may be cited as precedent in appeals to the Committee.

    (f) Consultation With Office of Examination and Insurance or Office of General Counsel Required. If an appeal involves the interpretation of material supervisory policy or generally accepted accounting principles, the Committee shall notify the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance of the appeal and solicit input from the Office of Examination and Insurance. If an appeal involves the interpretation of legal requirements, including NCUA's regulations, the Committee shall notify the General Counsel of the appeal and solicit input from the Office of General Counsel.

    (g) Supplemental Procedures Authorized. In addition to the procedures contained in this subpart, the Committee Chairman may adopt supplemental procedures governing the operations of the Committee, order that material be kept confidential, or consolidate appeals that present similar issues of law or fact.

    § 746.108 Composition of Supervisory Review Committee.

    (a) Formation and Composition of Committee Pool. The NCUA Chairman shall select not less than eight members from among senior staff in the regional offices, the Office of the Executive Director, the Office of Examination and Insurance, the Office of National Examination and Supervision, the Office of Small Credit Union Initiatives, and the Office of Consumer Financial Protection and Access to serve along with the Committee Chairman as a Committee pool from which the Committee Chairman may select Committee members. None of the members appointed by the NCUA Chairman shall also serve as a regional director, associate regional director, executive director, deputy executive director, general counsel, or a senior policy advisor or chief of staff to a Board Member.

    (b) Term of Office for Members of Committee Pool. Each member of the Committee pool shall serve for a one year term and may be reappointed by the NCUA Chairman for additional terms.

    (c) Designation and Role of Committee Chairman. The Secretary of the Board shall serve as permanent Committee Chairman. The Committee Chairman shall be responsible for designating three Committee members (one of whom may be the Committee Chairman) from among the Committee pool to hear a particular appeal.

    (d) Selection Criteria. When selecting Committee members to hear an appeal pursuant to paragraph (c), the Committee Chairman shall consider any real or apparent conflicts of interest that may impact the objectivity of the Committee member as well as that individual's experience with the subject matter of the appeal.

    (e) Interested Staff Ineligible. Members of the Committee pool from the program office that made the material supervisory determination that is the subject of the appeal are ineligible to serve on the Committee for that appeal. Members of the Committee pool from the Office of Examination and Insurance are ineligible to serve on the Committee for appeals where the petitioner previously requested review by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance pursuant to § 746.106.

    (f) Role of the Special Counsel. The Special Counsel to the General Counsel shall serve as a permanent nonvoting member of the Committee to advise on procedural and legal matters.

    (g) Quorum; Meetings. A quorum of two Committee members (excluding the Special Counsel) shall be present at each Committee meeting and a majority vote of a quorum is required for an action on an appeal. Meetings of the Committee will not be open to the public.

    § 746.109 Procedures for Appealing to the NCUA Board.

    (a) Request for Appeal. A petitioner may file an appeal with the Board challenging a decision by the Committee within 30 calendar days after receiving that decision. An appeal must be in writing and filed with the Secretary of the Board, National Credit Union Administration, 1775 Duke Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-3428.

    (b) Granting an Appeal. At least one Board Member must agree to consider an appeal from a decision by the Committee. If a request for an oral hearing pursuant to § 746.111 is granted, the Secretary of the Board will notify the parties of the time and location where the oral hearing shall be heard. Except in unusual circumstances, any appeal shall be held at NCUA headquarters. If at least one Board Member does not agree to consider an appeal from a decision by the Committee within 20 days of receiving a request, the request will be deemed to have been denied.

    (c) Failure to File a Timely Appeal. A petitioner that fails to file an appeal within the specified 30-day period shall be deemed to have waived all claims pertaining to the matters in issue.

    (d) Certain Actions Not Reviewable. Notwithstanding any other provision of this subpart, Committee decisions on the denial of a technical assistance grant reimbursement are final decisions of NCUA and may not be appealed to the Board.

    (e) Content of Appeal. Any request for appeal must include:

    (1) A statement of the facts on which the appeal is based;

    (2) A statement of the basis for the determination to which the petitioner objects and the alleged error in such determination; and

    (3) For federally insured credit unions, a certification that its board of directors has authorized the appeal to be filed.

    (f) Amending or Supplementing the Appeal. The petitioner may amend or supplement the appeal in writing within 15 calendar days from the date the Secretary of the Board receives an appeal. If the petitioner amends or supplements the appeal, the respondent will be permitted to file responsive materials within 15 calendar days.

    (g) Request for Oral Hearing. In accordance with § 746.111, the petitioner may request an opportunity to appear before the Board to make an oral presentation in support of the appeal.

    § 746.110 Administration of the Appeal.

    (a) Conduct of Appeal. Except as otherwise provided in § 746.111, the following procedures shall govern the conduct of an appeal to the Board:

    (1) Review Based on Written Record. The appeal of a material supervisory determination shall be entirely based on the written record.

    (2) Submission of Written Materials. The Board or the Special Counsel to the General Counsel may request additional information to be provided in writing from either of the parties within 15 calendar days after the filing of an appeal, any amendments or supplementary information to the appeal documents by the petitioner, or any responsive materials by the respondent, whichever is later. The parties must submit the requested information to the Board or the Special Counsel within 15 calendar days of receiving a request for additional information.

    (b) Decision. The Board shall issue a decision within 90 calendar days, unless there is an oral hearing, from the date of receipt of an appeal by the Secretary of the Board. The decision by the Board shall be in writing, stating the reasons for the decision, and shall constitute a final agency action for purposes of chapter 7 of title 5 of the United States Code. Failure by the Board to issue a decision on an appeal within the 90-day period, unless there is an oral hearing, shall be deemed to be a denial of the appeal.

    (c) Publication. The Board shall publish its decisions on NCUA's Web site with appropriate redactions to protect confidential or exempt information. In cases where redaction is insufficient to prevent improper disclosure, published decisions may be presented in summary form. Published decisions may be cited as precedent.

    § 746.111 Oral Hearing.

    (a) Request for Oral Hearing. The petitioner may request to appear before the Board to make an oral presentation in support of the appeal. The request must be submitted with the initial appeal documents and should be in the form of a separate written document titled “Request for Oral Hearing.” The request must show good cause for an oral presentation and state reasons why the appeal cannot be presented adequately in writing.

    (b) Action on the Request. The Board shall determine whether to grant the request for oral hearing and shall direct the Secretary of the Board to serve notice of the Board's determination in writing to the parties. A request for oral hearing shall be granted with the approval of any Board Member within 20 days of receiving a request for an oral hearing.

    (c) Effect of Denial. In the event a request for an oral hearing is denied, the appeal shall be reviewed by the Board on the basis of the written record.

    (d) Procedures for Oral Hearing. The following procedures shall govern the conduct of any oral hearing:

    (1) Scheduling of Oral Hearing; Location. The Secretary of the Board shall notify the parties of the date and time for the oral hearing, making sure to provide reasonable lead time and schedule accommodations. The oral hearing will be held at NCUA headquarters; provided, however, that on its own initiative or at the request of the petitioner, the NCUA Chairman may in his or her sole discretion allow for an oral hearing to be conducted via teleconference or video conference facilities.

    (2) Appearances; Representation. The parties shall submit a notice of appearance identifying the individual(s) who will be representing them in the oral presentation. The federally insured credit union shall designate not more than two officers, employees, or other representatives including counsel, unless authorized by the NCUA Chairman. The program office shall designate not more than two individuals one of whom may be an enforcement attorney from NCUA's Office of General Counsel, unless authorized by the NCUA Chairman.

    (3) Conduct of Oral Hearing. The oral hearing shall consist entirely of oral presentations. The introduction of written evidence or witness testimony shall not be permitted at the oral hearing. The petitioner shall argue first. Each side shall be allotted a specified and equal amount of time for its presentation, of which a portion may be reserved for purposes of rebuttal. This time limit shall be set by the Board and will be based on the complexity of the appeal. Members of the Board may ask questions of any individual appearing before the Board.

    (4) Transcript. The oral hearing shall be on the record and transcribed by a stenographer, who will prepare a transcript of the proceedings. The stenographer will make the transcript available to the federally insured credit union upon payment of the cost thereof.

    (e) Confidentiality. An oral hearing as provided for herein constitutes a meeting of the Board within the meaning of the Government in the Sunshine Act (5 U.S.C. 552b). The Chairman shall preside over the conduct of the oral hearing. The meeting will be closed to the public to the extent that one or more of the exemptions from public meetings apply as certified by NCUA's Office of General Counsel. The Board shall maintain the confidentiality of any information or materials submitted or otherwise obtained in the course of the procedures outlined herein, subject to applicable law and regulations.

    (f) Conclusion of the Oral Hearing. The Board shall take the oral presentations under advisement. The Board shall render its decision on the appeal in accordance with § 746.110.

    § 746.112 Retaliation Prohibited.

    (a) Retaliation Prohibited. NCUA staff may not retaliate against a federally insured credit union making any type of appeal. Alleged acts of retaliation should be reported to the NCUA Office of Inspector General, which is authorized to receive and investigate complaints and other information regarding abuse in agency programs and operations.

    (b) Submission of Complaints. Federally insured credit unions may submit complaints of suspected retaliation to the NCUA Office of Inspector General, 1775 Duke Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-3428. Complaints should include an explanation of the circumstances surrounding the complaint and evidence of any retaliation. Information submitted as part of a complaint shall be kept confidential.

    (c) Disciplinary Action. Any retaliation by NCUA staff will subject the employee to appropriate disciplinary or remedial action by the appropriate supervisor. Such disciplinary or remedial action may include oral or written warning or admonishment, reprimand, suspension or separation from employment, change in assigned duties, or disqualification from a particular assignment, including prohibition from participating in any examination of the federally insured credit union that was the subject of the retaliation.

    § 746.113 Coordination with State Supervisory Authority.

    (a) Coordination when Request for Review by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance Filed. In the event that a material supervisory determination subject to a request for review by the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance is the joint product of NCUA and a state supervisory authority, the Director of the Office of Examination and Insurance will promptly notify the appropriate state supervisory authority of the request for review, provide the state supervisory authority with a copy of the request for review and any other related materials, solicit the state supervisory authority's views regarding the merits of the request for review before making a determination, and notify the state supervisory authority of the Director's determination.

    (b) Coordination when Appeal to Supervisory Review Committee Filed. In the event that a material supervisory determination appealed to the Committee is the joint product of NCUA and a state supervisory authority, the Committee will promptly notify the state supervisory authority of the appeal, provide the state supervisory authority with a copy of the appeal and any other related materials, solicit the state supervisory authority's views regarding the merits of the appeal before making a determination, and notify the state supervisory authority of the Committee's determination. Once the Committee has issued its determination, any other issues that may remain between the federally insured credit union and the state supervisory authority will be left to those parties to resolve.

    (c) Coordination when Appeal to Board Filed. In the event that a material supervisory determination appealed to the Board is the joint product of NCUA and a state supervisory authority, the Board will promptly notify the state supervisory authority of the appeal, provide the state supervisory authority with a copy of the appeal and any other related materials, solicit the state supervisory authority's views regarding the merits of the appeal before making a determination, and notify the state supervisory authority of the Board's determination. Once the Board has issued its determination, any other issues that may remain between the federally insured credit union and the state supervisory authority will be left to those parties to resolve.

    [FR Doc. 2017-11320 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 7535-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 39 [Docket No. FAA-2017-0511; Directorate Identifier 2016-NM-176-AD] RIN 2120-AA64 Airworthiness Directives; Bombardier, Inc. Airplanes AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

    SUMMARY:

    We propose to adopt a new airworthiness directive (AD) for certain Bombardier, Inc. Model CL-600-1A11 (CL-600), CL-600-2A12 (CL-601 Variant), and CL-600-2B16 (CL-601-3A, CL-601-3R, and CL-604 Variants) airplanes. This proposed AD was prompted by a new life limitation that has been introduced for the side brace fitting shaft and side brace-to-airplane fitting pin of the main landing gear (MLG). This proposed AD would require revising the maintenance or inspection program. This proposed AD would also require an inspection to identify the serial number, to serialize, and to record the accumulated life of the side brace fitting shaft of the MLG. We are proposing this AD to address the unsafe condition on these products.

    DATES:

    We must receive comments on this proposed AD by July 24, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

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

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

    Fax: 202-493-2251.

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

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

    For service information identified in this NPRM, contact Bombardier, Inc., 400 Côte-Vertu Road West, Dorval, Québec H4S 1Y9, Canada; Widebody Customer Response Center North America toll-free telephone 1-866-538-1247 or direct-dial telephone 1-514-855-2999; fax 514-855-7401; email [email protected]; Internet http://www.bombardier.com. You may view this referenced service information at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221.

    Examining the AD Docket

    You may examine the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2017-0511; or in person at the Docket Management Facility between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The AD docket contains this proposed AD, the regulatory evaluation, any comments received, and other information. The street address for the Docket Operations office (telephone 800-647-5527) is in the ADDRESSES section. Comments will be available in the AD docket shortly after receipt.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Aziz Ahmed, Aerospace Engineer, Airframe and Mechanical Systems Branch, ANE-171, FAA, New York Aircraft Certification Office (ACO), 1600 Stewart Avenue, Suite 410, Westbury, NY 11590; telephone 516-228-7329; fax 516-794-5531.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Comments Invited

    We invite you to send any written relevant data, views, or arguments about this proposed AD. Send your comments to an address listed under the ADDRESSES section. Include “Docket No. FAA-2017-0511; Directorate Identifier 2016-NM-176-AD” at the beginning of your comments. We specifically invite comments on the overall regulatory, economic, environmental, and energy aspects of this proposed AD. We will consider all comments received by the closing date and may amend this proposed AD based on those comments.

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

    Discussion

    Transport Canada Civil Aviation (TCCA), which is the aviation authority for Canada, has issued Canadian Airworthiness Directive CF-2016-17R2, dated June 29, 2016 (referred to after this as the Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information, or “the MCAI”), to correct an unsafe condition for certain Bombardier, Inc. Model CL-600-1A11 (CL-600), CL-600-2A12 (CL-601 Variant), and CL-600-2B16 (CL-601-3A, CL-601-3R, and CL-604 Variants) airplanes. The MCAI states:

    Based on in-service experience, a new life limitation has been introduced for the following side brace fitting shaft part numbers:

    • 600-10237-1/-5

    • 600-10237-3

    • 601R10237-1/-3

    In order to facilitate identification and tracking, the component must be identified and serialized. Bombardier has revised the Time Limits/Maintenance Checks (TLMC) Manual to include new life limits and issued Service Bulletins (SB) for serialization of the affected parts.

    The original version of this [Canadian] AD was issued to mandate the incorporation of the new TLMC life limits as well as identification and serialization of the affected parts. The revision 1 of this [Canadian] AD was issued * * * June [10,] 2016 to correct a typographic error in Table A of the Corrective Actions section. The revision 2 of this [Canadian] AD is being issued to correct/update the TLMC data in Table A of the Corrective Actions section.

    Required actions include an inspection to identify the serial number, to serialize, and to record the accumulated life of the side brace fitting shaft of the MLG. The unsafe condition is the loss of structural integrity of the affected part. You may examine the MCAI in the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2017-0511.

    Related Service Information Under 1 CFR Part 51

    We reviewed the following service information. The service information describes the life limits for the side brace fitting shaft and side brace-to-airplane fitting pin of the MLG. The service information is distinct since it applies to different airplane models in different configurations.

    • Chapter 5-10-10, Airworthiness Limitations, of the Bombardier Challenger PSP 605 Time Limits/Maintenance Checks, Revision 37, dated April 29, 2016.

    • Chapter 5-10-10, Airworthiness Limitations, of the Bombardier Challenger PSP 601-5 Time Limits/Maintenance Checks, Revision 42, dated April 22, 2014.

    • Chapter 5-10-10, Airworthiness Limitations, of the Bombardier Challenger PSP 601A-5 Time Limits/Maintenance Checks, Revision 38, dated April 22, 2014.

    • Chapter 5-10-10, Airworthiness Limitations, of Part 2, of the Bombardier Challenger CL-604 Time Limits/Maintenance Checks, Revision 26, dated June 9, 2016.

    • Chapter 5-10-10, Airworthiness Limitations, of Part 2, of the Bombardier Challenger CL-605 Time Limits/Maintenance Checks, Revision 14, dated June 9, 2016.

    We have also reviewed the following service information. The service information describes procedures for an inspection to identify the serial number, to serialize, and to record the accumulated life of the side brace fitting shaft of the MLG. The service bulletins are distinct since they apply to different airplane models.

    • Bombardier Service Bulletin 600-0768, dated September 9, 2014.

    • Bombardier Service Bulletin 601-0636, Revision 01, dated May 10, 2016.

    • Bombardier Service Bulletin 604-57-005, dated September 9, 2014.

    • Bombardier Service Bulletin 605-57-003, dated September 9, 2014.

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

    FAA's Determination and Requirements of This Proposed AD

    This product has been approved by the aviation authority of another country, and is approved for operation in the United States. Pursuant to our bilateral agreement with the State of Design Authority, we have been notified of the unsafe condition described in the MCAI and service information referenced above. We are proposing this AD because we evaluated all pertinent information and determined an unsafe condition exists and is likely to exist or develop on other products of the same type design.

    This proposed AD would require revisions to certain operator maintenance documents to include new actions (e.g., inspections). Compliance with these actions is required by 14 CFR 91.403(c). For airplanes that have been previously modified, altered, or repaired in the areas addressed by this proposed AD, the operator may not be able to accomplish the actions described in the revisions. In this situation, to comply with 14 CFR 91.403(c), the operator must request approval for an alternative method of compliance according to paragraph (k)(1) of this proposed AD. The request should include a description of changes to the required actions that will ensure the continued operational safety of the airplane.

    Costs of Compliance

    We estimate that this proposed AD affects 133 airplanes of U.S. registry.

    We estimate the following costs to comply with this proposed AD:

    Estimated Costs Action Labor cost Parts cost Cost
  • per product
  • Cost on U.S. operators
    Maintenance or inspection program revision 1 work-hour × $85 per hour = $85 $0 $85 $11,305 Inspection, identification, serialization, and recording 1 work-hour × $85 per hour = $85 33 118 15,694
    Authority for This Rulemaking

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

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

    Regulatory Findings

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

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

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

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

    3. Will not affect intrastate aviation in Alaska; and

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

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 39

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

    The Proposed Amendment

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

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

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

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

    Bombardier, Inc.: Docket No. FAA-2017-0511; Directorate Identifier 2016-NM-176-AD.

    (a) Comments Due Date

    We must receive comments by July 24, 2017.

    (b) Affected ADs

    None.

    (c) Applicability

    This AD applies to the airplanes specified in paragraphs (c)(1) through (c)(3) of this AD, certificated in any category.

    (1) Bombardier, Inc. Model CL-600-1A11 (CL-600) airplanes, serial numbers 1004 through 1085 inclusive.

    (2) Bombardier, Inc. Model CL-600-2A12 (CL-601 Variant) airplanes, serial numbers 3001 through 3066 inclusive.

    (3) Bombardier, Inc. Model CL-600-2B16 (CL-601-3A, CL-601-3R, and CL-604 Variants) airplanes, serial numbers 5001 through 5194 inclusive; serial numbers 5301 through 5665 inclusive, and serial numbers 5701 through 5851 inclusive.

    (d) Subject

    Air Transport Association (ATA) of America Code 57, Wings.

    (e) Reason

    This AD was prompted by a new life limitation that has been introduced for the side brace fitting shaft and side brace-to-airplane fitting pin of the main landing gear (MLG). We are issuing this AD to prevent the loss of structural integrity of the affected part.

    (f) Compliance

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

    (g) Revision of Maintenance or Inspection Program

    Within 30 days after the effective date of this AD, revise the maintenance or inspection program, as applicable, by incorporating the life limits for the side brace fitting shaft and side brace-to-airplane fitting pin of the MLG, as applicable, identified in table 1 to paragraph (g) of this AD. The initial compliance time for accomplishing the replacement is at the applicable time in the Time Limits/Maintenance Checks (TLMC) Manual revisions specified in table 1 to paragraph (g) of this AD, or within 30 days after the effective date of this AD, whichever occurs later.

    Table 1 to Paragraph (g) of This AD—Life Limits for the Affected Parts Airplane model
  • (Serial Nos. (S/Ns))
  • Part name Part No. TLMC
  • manual No.
  • Chapter Revision No. Revision date
    CL-600-1A11 (S/Ns 1004 through 1085 inclusive) MLG Side Brace-to-Airplane Fitting Pin 600-10237-1/-5 PSP 605 5-10-10 37 April 29, 2016. CL-600-2A12 (S/N 3001-3066 inclusive) MLG Side Brace-to-Airplane Fitting Pin 600-10237-3 PSP 601-5 5-10-10 42 April 22, 2014. CL-600-2B16 (S/Ns 5001-5194 inclusive) MLG Side Brace-to-Airplane Fitting Pin 600-10237-3 PSP 601A-5 5-10-10 38 April 22, 2014. CL-600-2B16 (S/Ns 5301-5665 inclusive) MLG Side Brace Fitting Shaft 601R10237-1/-3 CL-604 5-10-10 (Part 2) 26 June 9, 2016. CL-600-2B16 (S/Ns 5701-5851 inclusive) MLG Side Brace Fitting Shaft 601R10237-1/-3 CL-605 5-10-10 (Part 2) 14 June 9, 2016.
    (h) Inspection, Serialization, and Recording of Life Limited Parts

    Within 48 months after the effective date of this AD: Inspect to identify the serial number, serialize, and record the accumulated life of the side brace fitting shaft of the MLG, as applicable, in accordance with the Accomplishment Instructions of the applicable service information in paragraphs (h)(1) through (h)(4) of this AD.

    (1) For CL-600-1A11 airplanes (S/Ns 1004 through 1085 inclusive): Bombardier Service Bulletin 600-0768, dated September 9, 2014.

    (2) For CL-600-2A12 (S/Ns 3001 through 3066 inclusive) and CL-600-2B16 airplanes (S/Ns 5001 through 5194 inclusive): Bombardier Service Bulletin 601-0636, Revision 01, dated May 10, 2016.

    (3) For CL-600-2B16 aeroplanes (S/Ns 5301 through 5665 inclusive): Bombardier Service Bulletin 604-57-005, dated September 9, 2014.

    (4) For CL-600-2B16 aeroplanes (S/Ns 5701 through 5851 inclusive): Bombardier Service Bulletin 605-57-003, dated September 9, 2014.

    (i) No Reporting Requirement

    Although the service information identified in paragraphs (h)(1) through (h)(4) of this AD specifies to submit certain information to the manufacturer, this AD does not include that requirement.

    (j) No Alternative Actions and Intervals

    After the maintenance or inspection program has been revised, as applicable, as required by paragraph (g) of this AD, no alternative actions (e.g., inspections) or intervals may be used unless the actions or intervals are approved as an alternative method of compliance (AMOC) in accordance with the procedures specified in paragraph (k)(1) of this AD.

    (k) Other FAA AD Provisions

    The following provisions also apply to this AD:

    (1) Alternative Methods of Compliance (AMOCs): The Manager, New York Aircraft Certification Office, ANE-170, FAA, has the authority to approve AMOCs for this AD, if requested using the procedures found in 14 CFR 39.19. In accordance with 14 CFR 39.19, send your request to your principal inspector or local Flight Standards District Office, as appropriate. If sending information directly to the ACO, send it to ATTN: Program Manager, Continuing Operational Safety, FAA, New York ACO, 1600 Stewart Avenue, Suite 410, Westbury, NY 11590; telephone 516-228-7300; fax 516-794-5531. Before using any approved AMOC, notify your appropriate principal inspector, or lacking a principal inspector, the manager of the local flight standards district office/certificate holding district office.

    (2) Contacting the Manufacturer: For any requirement in this AD to obtain corrective actions from a manufacturer, the action must be accomplished using a method approved by the Manager, New York ACO, ANE-170, FAA; or Transport Canada Civil Aviation (TCCA); or Bombardier, Inc.'s TCCA Design Approval Organization (DAO). If approved by the DAO, the approval must include the DAO-authorized signature.

    (l) Related Information

    (1) Refer to Mandatory Continuing Airworthiness Information (MCAI) Canadian Airworthiness Directive CF-2016-17R2, dated June 29, 2016, for related information. This MCAI may be found in the AD docket on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov by searching for and locating Docket No. FAA-2017-0511.

    (2) For more information about this AD, contact Aziz Ahmed, Aerospace Engineer, Airframe and Mechanical Systems Branch, ANE-171, FAA, New York ACO, 1600 Stewart Avenue, Suite 410, Westbury, NY 11590; telephone 516-228-7329; fax 516-794-5531.

    (3) For service information identified in this AD, contact Bombardier, Inc., 400 Côte-Vertu Road West, Dorval, Québec H4S 1Y9, Canada; Widebody Customer Response Center North America toll-free telephone 1-866-538-1247 or direct-dial telephone 1-514-855-2999; fax 514-855-7401; email [email protected]; Internet http://www.bombardier.com. You may view this service information at the FAA, Transport Airplane Directorate, 1601 Lind Avenue SW., Renton, WA. For information on the availability of this material at the FAA, call 425-227-1221.

    Issued in Renton, Washington, on May 18, 2017. Michael Kaszycki, Acting Manager, Transport Airplane Directorate, Aircraft Certification Service.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11001 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2016-9549; Airspace Docket No. 17-ASO-5] Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace, Alexander City, AL AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

    SUMMARY:

    This action proposes to amend Class E airspace at Alexander City, AL, due to the decommissioning of the Alexander City non-directional beacon (NDB), which requires airspace reconfiguration at Thomas C Russell Field Airport. Controlled airspace is necessary for the safety and management of instrument flight rules (IFR) operations at the airport. This action also would update the geographic coordinates of the airport.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before July 24, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Send comments on this proposal to: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Bldg Ground Floor Rm W12-140, Washington, DC 20590; Telephone: 1-(800)-647-5527, or (202) 366-9826. You must identify the Docket No. FAA-2016-9549; Airspace Docket No. 17-ASO-5, at the beginning of your comments. You may also submit and review received 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 on line at http://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/publications/. For further information, you can contact the Airspace Policy Group, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20591; telephone: (202) 267-8783. The Order is also available for inspection at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of 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:

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

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Authority for This Rulemaking

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

    Comments Invited

    Interested persons are invited to comment on this rule 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. You may also submit comments through the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov.

    Persons wishing the FAA to acknowledge receipt of their comments on this action must submit with those comments a self-addressed stamped postcard on which the following statement is made: “Comments to Docket No. FAA-2016-9549; Airspace Docket No. 17-ASO-5.” 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 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 between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except federal holidays at the office of the Eastern Service Center, Federal Aviation Administration, Room 350, 1701 Columbia Avenue, College Park, GA 30337.

    Availability and Summary of Documents 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 considering an amendment to Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 71 to amend Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet or more above the surface within a 7.7-mile radius of Thomas C Russell Field Airport, Alexander City, AL. The segment extending from the 7.7-mile radius of the airport to 7 miles south of the Alexander City NDB would be removed due to the decommissioning of the Alexander City NDB and cancellation of the NDB approach, and for continued safety and management of IFR operations at the airport. The geographic coordinates of the airport also would be adjusted to coincide with the FAAs aeronautical database.

    Class E airspace designations 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 proposed rule, when promulgated, will 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.

    Lists 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 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 Federal Aviation Administration Order 7400.11A, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2016, and effective September 15, 2016, is amended as follows: Paragraph 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward From 700 Feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth. ASO AL E5 Alexander City, AL [Amended] Thomas C. Russell Field Airport, AL (Lat. 32°54′53″ N., long. 85°57′47″ W.)

    That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 7.7-mile radius of Thomas C. Russell Field Airport.

    Issued in College Park, Georgia, on May 19, 2017. Ryan W. Almasy, Manager, Operations Support Group, Eastern Service Center, Air Traffic Organization.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11395 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2017-0388; Airspace Docket No. 17-AGL-13] Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace; Medford, WI and Waupaca, WI AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

    SUMMARY:

    This action proposes to modify Class E airspace extending up to 700 feet above the surface at Taylor County Airport, Medford, WI and Waupaca Municipal Airport, Waupaca, WI, to accommodate new standard instrument approach procedures (SIAPS) for instrument flight rules (IFR) operations at these airports. This action is necessary due to the decommissioning of the Medford and Waupaca non directional radio beacons (NDB), and cancellation of NDB approaches. This action would enhance the safety and management of IFR operations at these airports.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before July 24, 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 20590-0001; telephone (202) 366-9826, or (800) 647-5527. You must identify FAA Docket No. FAA-2017-0388 and Airspace Docket No. 17-AGL-13, at the beginning of your comments. You may also submit comments through the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov.

    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 7400.11A, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, is published yearly and effective on September 15.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ron Laster, Federal Aviation Administration, Contract Support, Operations Support Group, Central Service Center, 10101 Hillwood Parkway, Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone (817) 222-5879.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Authority for This Rulemaking

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

    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 (FAA Docket No. FAA-2017-0388 and Airspace Docket No. 17-AGL-13) and be submitted in triplicate to DOT Docket Operations (see ADDRESSES section for address and phone number.) You may also submit comments through the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov.

    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-2017-0388/Airspace Docket No. 17-AGL-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 concerning 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 Federal Aviation Administration, Air Traffic Organization, Central Service Center, Operations Support Group, 10101 Hillwood Parkway, Fort Worth, TX 76177.

    Availability and Summary of Documents Proposed for Incorporation by Reference

    This document proposes to amend FAA Order 7400.11A, 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 modifying Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Taylor County Airport in Medford WI. The Agency proposes to retain the current Class E airspace within a 6.8-mile radius of the airport and to remove the segment of airspace within 2.7 miles each side of the 162° bearing from the airport extending from the 6.8-mile radius to 7 miles southeast of the airport due to the decommissioning of the Medford NDB and cancellation of the NDB approach.

    The agency also proposes to modify the Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Waupaca Municipal Airport, Waupaca, WI. The agency proposes to retain the current Class E airspace within a 6.4-mile radius of the airport and to remove the segment within 2.7 miles each side of the 118° bearing from the airport, extending from the 6.4-mile radius area to 7 miles southeast of the airport due to the decommissioning of the Waupaca NDB and cancellation of the NDB approach. This proposal would enhance the safety and management of the SIAPs for IFR operations at these airports.

    Class E airspace designations 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 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 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward From 700 Feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth. AGL WI E5 Medford, WI [Amended] Taylor County Airport, WI (Lat. 45°06′05″ N., long. 90°18′01″ W.)

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

    AGL WI E5 Waupaca, WI [Amended] Waupaca Municipal Airport, WI (Lat. 44°20′00″ N., long. 89°01′23″ W.)

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

    Issued in Fort Worth, Texas on May 31, 2017. Walter Tweedy, Acting Manager, Operations Support Group, ATO Central Service Center.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11678 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2016-9453; Airspace Docket No. 16-AEA-12] Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace, Hot Springs, VA AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

    SUMMARY:

    This action proposes to amend Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Hot Springs, VA, by adding controlled airspace for Bath Community Hospital Heliport to the Ingalls Field Airport airspace designation. Controlled airspace is necessary for the safety and management of instrument flight rules (IFR) operations at the heliport. This action also would update the geographic coordinates of Ingalls Field Airport in the associated Class E airspace.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before July 24, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Send comments on this proposal to: U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Bldg Ground Floor Rm W12-140, Washington, DC 20590; Telephone: 1-800-647-5527, or (202) 366-9826. You must identify the Docket No. FAA-2016-9453; Airspace Docket No. 16-AEA-12, at the beginning of your comments. You may also submit and review received comments through the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov. You may review the public docket containing the proposal, any comments received, and any final disposition in person in the Dockets Office between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The Docket Office (telephone 1-800-647-5527), is on the ground floor of the building at the above address.

    FAA Order 7400.11A, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, and subsequent amendments can be viewed on line at http://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/publications/. For further information, you can contact the Airspace Policy Group, Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20591; telephone: 202-267-8783. The Order is also available for inspection at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). For information on the availability of 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:

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

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Authority for This Rulemaking

    The FAA's authority to issue rules regarding aviation safety is found in Title 49 of the United States Code. Subtitle I, Section 106 describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII, Aviation Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the agency's authority. This proposed 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 add Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Bath Community Hospital Heliport to the existing designation of Class E airspace at Ingalls Field Airport, Hot Springs, VA.

    Comments Invited

    Interested persons are invited to comment on this rule 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. You may also submit comments through the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov.

    Persons wishing the FAA to acknowledge receipt of their comments on this action must submit with those comments a self-addressed stamped postcard on which the following statement is made: “Comments to Docket No. FAA-2016-9453; Airspace Docket No. 16-AEA-12.” 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 from and comments submitted through 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 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 between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal Holidays at the office of the Eastern Service Center, Federal Aviation Administration, Room 350, 1701 Columbia Avenue, College Park, Georgia 30337.

    Availability and Summary of Documents 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 proposes to amend Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 71 by adding Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 7-mile radius of Bath Community Hospital Heliport to the existing designation of Class E airspace at Ingalls Field Airport, Hot Springs, VA. This action would accommodate new Area Navigation (RNAV) Global Positioning System Standard Instrument Approach Procedures at the heliport. Airspace reconfiguration is necessary for the safety and management of IFR operations at the heliport. The FAA also proposes to update the geographic coordinates of Ingalls Field Airport to coincide with the FAAs aeronautical database.

    Class E airspace designations are published in Paragraph 6002, and 6005, respectively 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 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 proposed rule, when promulgated, will 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 would 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.

    Lists 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 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 Federal Aviation Administration Order 7400.11A, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2016, effective September 15, 2016, is amended as follows: Paragraph 6002 Class E Surface Area Airspace. AEA VA E2 Hot Springs, VA [Amended] Ingalls Field Airport, Hot Springs, VA (Lat. 37°57′09″ N., long. 79°50′03″ W.)

    Within a 4-mile radius of Ingalls Field Airport. This Class E airspace area is effective during the specific dates and times established in advance by a Notice to Airmen. The effective date and time will thereafter be published in the Chart Supplement.

    Paragraph 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward From 700 Feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth. AEA VA E5 Hot Springs, VA [Amended] Ingalls Field Airport, VA (Lat. 37°57′09″ N., long. 79°50′03″ W.) Bath Community Hospital Heliport, VA (Lat. 37°59′36″ N., long. 79°49′55″ W.)

    That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.5- mile radius of Ingalls Field Airport, and within a 7-mile radius of Bath Community Hospital Heliport.

    Issued in College Park, Georgia, on May 19, 2017. Ryan W. Almasy, Manager, Operations Support Group, Eastern Service Center, Air Traffic Organization.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11394 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Federal Emergency Management Agency 44 CFR Part 1 [Docket ID FEMA-2017-0016] RIN 1660-AA91 Update to FEMA's Regulations on Rulemaking Procedures AGENCY:

    Federal Emergency Management Agency, DHS.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking.

    SUMMARY:

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) proposes to revise its regulations pertaining to rulemaking. It proposes to remove sections that are outdated or do not affect the public, and it proposes to update provisions that affect the public's participation in the rulemaking process, such as the submission of public comments, hearings, ex parte communications, the public rulemaking docket, and petitions for rulemaking. FEMA also proposes to modify its waiver of the Administrative Procedure Act exemption for matters relating to public property, loans, grants, benefits, and contracts.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before August 7, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments, identified by Docket ID FEMA-2017-0016, by one of the following methods:

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

    Mail/Hand Delivery/Courier: Regulatory Affairs Division, Office of Chief Counsel, Federal Emergency Management Agency, 8NE, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Liza Davis, Associate Chief Counsel, Regulatory Affairs, Office of Chief Counsel, Federal Emergency Management Agency, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472, 202-646-4046, or (email) [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    I. Public Participation

    We encourage you to participate in this rulemaking by submitting comments and related materials. We will consider all comments and material received during the comment period.

    If you submit a comment, identify the agency name and the docket ID for this rulemaking, indicate the specific section of this document to which each comment applies, and give the reason for each comment. You may submit your comments and material by electronic means, mail, or delivery to the address under the ADDRESSES section. Please submit your comments and material by only one means.

    Regardless of the method used for submitting comments or material, all submissions will be posted, without change, to the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov, and will include any personal information you provide. Therefore, submitting this information makes it public. You may wish to read the Privacy and Security Notice that is available via a link on the homepage of www.regulations.gov.

    Viewing comments and documents: For access to the docket to read background documents or comments received, go to the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov. Background documents and submitted comments may also be inspected at FEMA, Office of Chief Counsel, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472-3100.

    II. Background

    FEMA established its regulations regarding its rulemaking procedures in 1981, in 44 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) part 1.1 FEMA has not substantively updated part 1 since that time. Part 1 is based on a rescinded Executive Order, Executive Order 12291, entitled “Federal Regulation,” and obsolete agency procedure, which was relevant when FEMA was an independent agency,2 but is no longer accurate, as FEMA is no longer an independent agency. FEMA now includes its internal rulemaking procedures addressing the development, drafting, and clearance of FEMA rules in internal guidance.

    1See 46 FR 32583 (June 24, 1981) (final rule establishing 44 CFR part 1); see also 44 FR 50299 (Aug. 27, 1979) (proposed rule proposing to establish 44 CFR part 1).

    2 FEMA became a component agency of the Department of Homeland Security on March 1, 2003 pursuant to the Homeland Security Act of 2002, Public Law 107-296, 116 Stat. 2135 (codified as amended at 6 U.S.C. 101 et seq.).

    In this proposed rule, FEMA proposes a wholesale revision of part 1, removing sections that solely address internal agency procedure, and retaining and updating sections that directly affect the public's participation in FEMA's rulemaking process, namely, provisions addressing ex parte communications in rulemaking, petitions for rulemaking, the public rulemaking docket, hearings, and the process for submitting public comments on rules.

    FEMA is also proposing to modify its waiver of the Administrative Procedure Act exemption for matters relating to public property, loans, grants, benefits, and contracts.

    Section III of this preamble includes a section-by-section analysis of the current regulations and an explanation of the changes to each section.

    III. Section-by-Section Analysis of the Current Regulations and Proposed Changes Section 1.1 Purpose

    Paragraph (a) of current section 1.1 states that 44 CFR part 1 covers FEMA's basic policies and procedures for adoption of rules, and that it incorporates provisions of section 4 of the Administrative Procedure Act. Section 4 of the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 553) addresses Federal agency requirements for notice and comment rulemaking. Notice and comment rulemaking is also known as “informal rulemaking.” Paragraph (a) of current section 1.1 also includes a statement that 44 CFR part 1 and internal FEMA manuals implement Executive Order 12291.

    FEMA proposes to limit the purpose of part 1 to describing FEMA's informal rulemaking procedures that affect the public. This proposed rule therefore does not describe FEMA's internal rulemaking procedures, which are more appropriately placed in internal guidance. FEMA proposes these changes for a number of reasons. First, the Administrative Procedure Act does not require internal agency procedure to be in regulation. See 5 U.S.C. 553(a)(2), 553(b)(A). Second, and more importantly, the references to Executive Order 12291 and implementing FEMA procedures are outdated. As noted above, Executive Order 12291 has been revoked, and was replaced with Executive Order 12866, “Regulatory Planning and Review.” 3 Executive Order 12866 imposed major changes to the regulatory review process of the Federal government, such as establishing a definition of “significant” rulemakings and requiring a 90-day review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) of those rulemakings.

    3 58 FR 51735 (Oct. 3, 1993).

    Thus, FEMA proposes to state in paragraph (a) of proposed section 1.1 simply that part 1 contains FEMA's informal rulemaking procedures that affect the public. Note that FEMA does not currently address formal rulemaking in its regulations,4 and does not propose to do so, as FEMA has never engaged in formal rulemaking and has no plans to do so. If the need or opportunity for a formal rulemaking should arise, FEMA will consider issuing regulations or guidance regarding formal rulemaking procedures at that time.

    4 Formal rulemaking is rulemaking made on the record after a formal hearing. See 5 U.S.C. 556, 557.

    The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), located in section 3(a) of the Administrative Procedure Act, requires certain agency documents to be published in the Federal Register for the guidance of the public. See 5 U.S.C. 552(a). Paragraph (b) of current section 1.1 states that FEMA's implementation of this requirement is contained in 44 CFR part 5, subpart B, but subpart B was removed when the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) updated its FOIA regulations, which also apply to FEMA. See 81 FR 83625 (Nov. 22, 2016). FEMA finds that this cross-reference to subpart B is outdated, not necessary, and potentially confusing. Accordingly, FEMA proposes to remove it from part 1.

    Paragraph (c) of current section 1.1 states that 44 CFR part 1 “contains policies and procedures for implementation of the Regulatory Flexibility Act which took effect January 1, 1981.” In this rulemaking, FEMA is proposing to remove all provisions from part 1 that address the requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, as these provisions are not required to be in regulation. The requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act pertain to an agency's responsibilities in performing a particular kind of analysis of its rulemakings, and do not include any requirements on the public. Therefore, FEMA proposes to remove paragraph (c) from current section 1.1.

    Paragraphs (d) and (e) of current section 1.1 refer to a rescinded FEMA manual that described the agency's internal rulemaking procedures.5 As the manual has since been rescinded, and there is no requirement to include references to such internal guidance in regulations, FEMA proposes to remove reference to such guidance in 44 CFR part 1.

    5 FEMA Manual 1140.1, The Formulation, Drafting, Clearance, and Publication of Federal Register Documents,” was rescinded by FEMA Manual 078-1-2, “Rulemaking and Federal Register Notice Development, Drafting, and Approval Procedures,” on 8/28/12.

    Section 1.2 Definitions

    Section 1.2 includes the definition of “rule or regulation,” which is the same definition that appears in the Administrative Procedure Act at 5 U.S.C. 551(4). Rather than restating the definition, FEMA proposes to simply provide the reference to the APA definition, for the sake of simplicity and to avoid the possible impression that FEMA's definition differs from the Administrative Procedure Act definition.

    FEMA proposes to remove the definition of “major rule.” This is a term found in rescinded Executive Order 12291, and the Congressional Review of Agency Rulemaking Act (CRA), and the definition need not be parroted in regulation.6 FEMA is therefore proposing to remove this definition from 44 CFR part 1.

    6 5 U.S.C. 801-808. See the description of the CRA in the Regulatory Analyses section of this preamble.

    FEMA does not propose any changes to the definitions of “rulemaking,” “Administrator,” or “FEMA.”

    Section 1.3 Scope

    FEMA proposes to remove paragraph (a) of this section, because it is redundant of proposed section 1.1, addressing the scope of part 1.

    FEMA proposes to remove paragraph (b) of this section, because it is not required to be in regulation. Paragraph (b) states that any delegation by the Administrator of authority to issue rules may not be further redelegated, unless expressly provided for in the delegation. Delegations are an internal agency matter, and are within the discretion of the FEMA Administrator whether to allow one of his functions to be delegable. FEMA currently has an internal delegation addressing rulemaking, FDA 0106-5 (included in the docket for this rulemaking at www.regulations.gov) which provides for FEMA rulemakings to be issued by either the Administrator or the Deputy Administrator of FEMA. It also provides for certain “routine and frequent” rulemakings regarding the National Flood Insurance Program to be issued by the Associate Administrator for Federal Insurance and Mitigation, or, if vacant, the Deputy Associate Administrator for Federal Insurance and Mitigation.

    FEMA proposes to move paragraph (c) of current section 1.3 to proposed section 1.1. This paragraph explains that 44 CFR part 1 does not address formal rulemaking procedures under the Administrative Procedure Act. If the need or opportunity arises to engage in a formal rulemaking, FEMA may issue relevant regulations or guidance at that time as necessary and appropriate.

    Section 1.4 Policy and Procedures

    FEMA proposes to remove paragraph 1.4(a), as it is based on a rescinded Executive Order, Executive Order 12291. It is not necessary to implement the provisions of such executive orders in regulation.

    Current paragraph 1.4(b) states that it is FEMA's policy to provide for public participation in rulemaking regarding its programs and functions, including for matters that relate to public property, loans, grants, benefits, or contracts. FEMA declared this policy notwithstanding that the Administrative Procedure Act's notice-and-comment rulemaking requirements do not apply to such programs and functions. See 5 U.S.C. 553(a)(2). In 1971, the Administrative Conference of the United States (ACUS) issued a recommendation which recommended that all Federal agencies waive the Administrative Procedure Act exemption, finding that the public interest in participating in these matters outweighed the added process required by notice and comment rulemaking.7 When FEMA issued part 1 in 1981, it adopted this recommendation.

    7 ACUS Recommendation 69-8, adopted Oct. 21-22, 1969, available at: https://www.acus.gov/sites/default/files/documents/69-8.pdf.

    One of FEMA's main functions is to administer grant programs for emergency preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation. The majority of these grant programs are annual grant programs, meaning Congress on an annual basis (1) appropriates a certain amount of money for the program, and (2) potentially revises requirements associated with the program. FEMA annually evaluates available resources and policy priorities, and issues notices of funding opportunity, i.e., calls for grant applications which specify the eligibility requirements and conditions for the grant. If in a given year Congress has not appropriated funds for a given annual grant program, FEMA will not issue a notice of funding opportunity or make any awards for that program.

    Because of the uncertainties associated with these programs and the time and resource constraints associated with the rulemaking process, it would be extremely challenging to promulgate or revise regulations each year for these annual grant programs, and therefore FEMA's practice for years has been to post a notice of funding opportunity on its Web site at https://www.fema.gov/grants when grant funds become available. These notices provide detailed information on grant eligibility and conditions, consistent with OMB requirements.8 FEMA finds that regulations are not necessary for these annual grant programs, because the requirements for the grant are included in legislation and the notices of funding opportunity which are available to the public on FEMA's Web site and www.grants.gov. 9

    8See Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards, at 2 CFR 200.203.

    9 FEMA's disaster grant programs are awarded based on event-specific Presidential declarations rather than an annual appropriation from Congress; FEMA maintains fulsome regulations for these programs.

    FEMA notes that in the 1971 ACUS recommendation, ACUS cited the inadequate practice of some agencies at that time of notifying applicants of available grant funds and actions taken on applications. However, it is now standard practice for Federal agencies to use the internet to disseminate information to the public. FEMA's use of its Web site and www.grants.gov for its annual grant programs allows any member of the public easy access to grant application information, and inadequate notice is no longer an issue.

    Because it would be unduly burdensome and, in some cases, impossible to promulgate annual grant program requirements in regulation, because the APA does not require such (or any) grant program requirements to be in regulation, and because FEMA requires flexibility to adapt quickly to legal and policy mandates, FEMA considered eliminating current paragraph 1.4(b) entirely. At this time, however, FEMA prefers to retain a statement in support of public participation in rulemaking, because although FEMA sees little reason to retain current paragraph 1.4(b) as drafted, FEMA continues to believe that public participation is frequently beneficial to the rulemaking process, particularly for its non-annual disaster grant programs. Accordingly, FEMA proposes to modify its part 1 with respect to the grants exception. Specifically, under this proposed rule (proposed section 1.3), FEMA would retain its general policy in favor of public participation, but would retain discretion to depart from this policy in its discretion and as circumstances warrant, such as with respect to annual grant programs. FEMA also proposes to include a provision stating that its general policy of providing for public participation in rulemaking is not intended to create a right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable against the United States.

    FEMA proposes to remove paragraph (c) from current section 1.4, as it merely echoes the requirement of the Administrative Procedure Act at 5 U.S.C. 553 to publish notices of proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register and to give the public an opportunity to participate in the rulemaking through submission of written data, views, and arguments, with or without opportunity for oral presentation.

    FEMA proposes to remove paragraph (d) from current section 1.4, which describes FEMA's policy of giving the public, including small entities and consumer groups, an early and meaningful opportunity to participate in the development of rules such as through advance notices of proposed rulemakings, holding open conferences, and convening public forums or panels. Such a policy need not be in regulation.

    FEMA proposes to remove paragraph (e) from current section 1.4, which contains FEMA's policy to hold a 60-day public comment period for notices of proposed rulemaking. This policy is consistent with the time period recommended by Executive Order 12866. Paragraph (e) also states that the comment period will include any period of review required by OMB in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1980. Such a policy need not be in regulation.

    Paragraph (f) of current section 1.4 addresses Administrative Procedure Act provisions that allow an agency to bypass notice and comment. FEMA proposes to remove paragraph (f) from current section 1.4.

    Paragraph (g) of current section 1.4 addresses the delayed effective date provision of the Administrative Procedure Act. Under this provision, a substantive rule generally becomes effective no earlier than 30 calendar days after the date of publication in the Federal Register, unless the agency provides an explanation in the preamble to the rule that it has good cause to make the rule effective immediately upon the date of publication. FEMA proposes to remove this provision from current section 1.4.

    Paragraph (h) of current section 1.4 addresses publication of rules in emergency situations. It states that part 1 does not apply to such situations, and any such regulation will be reported to OMB. It states that as soon as is practicable, FEMA will publish in the Federal Register a statement of the reasons why it is impracticable for the agency to follow the procedures of Executive Order 12866, and the agency shall prepare and transmit, as needed, and as soon as practicable, a regulatory impact analysis for the rule. FEMA proposes to remove this paragraph from section 1.4, because it predates the termination of FEMA's status as an independent agency, and addresses a matter of internal U.S. government coordination.

    Section 1.5 Rules Docket

    Section 1.5 addresses the public rules docket. FEMA proposes to renumber this section as section 1.4. FEMA proposes to slightly revise this section, to clarify that the public rulemaking docket is available for public inspection after a rule document has been published in the Federal Register. This is the point when a public rulemaking docket is established. Prior to that point, any documents associated with the rulemaking are part of the internal development process, and are not included in the public docket. FEMA also proposes to clarify that the public docket is available in hard copy until the rule project is closed. Once a rule project is closed (either because the rule has been finalized or withdrawn), FEMA archives the docket at the National Archives and Records Administration, due to limited physical space at FEMA offices. An electronic copy of the docket would still be available on www.regulations.gov, however, with the exception of any copyrighted material that might be associated with the rule project.

    FEMA also proposes to add a requirement that any member of the public wishing to physically inspect the public docket do so by prearrangement with FEMA. FEMA has consolidated its office space and no longer maintains a separate reading room for rule dockets. Therefore, it is necessary for FEMA to reserve a space ahead of time for a member of the public to inspect the public docket. FEMA proposes to remove the requirement that a member of the public must pay a fee to obtain a copy of the public docket.

    FEMA proposes to move the provision addressing the submission of public comments to a separate section, as it is not directly related to inspection of the public docket (although public comments are included in the docket itself). The new section addressing submission of public comments would be numbered section 1.5, and addresses submission of comments electronically to www.regulations.gov as well as submission via mail or courier to FEMA.

    Finally, FEMA proposes to add a section to address the public dockets for flood hazard elevation rules. The physical repository addresses for supporting material for those rules vary depend on the locality that is the subject of the rule. FEMA includes the address in the preamble to each flood hazard elevation rule.

    Section 1.6 Ex Parte Communications

    Section 1.6 addresses ex parte communications during the rulemaking process. FEMA proposes to revise this section to cover written as well as oral communications, and to cover any such communications from outside the Federal Executive branch, rather than outside FEMA. There are various communications necessary outside FEMA but within the Federal Executive branch during the rulemaking process, such as with DHS, OMB, or other Federal agencies, as part of internal government review, to ensure consistency in Federal government policy, and to consult with other agencies with expertise in the subject of the rule or that may be affected by the rule. These communications are considered “internal” as they are contained within the Federal Executive branch. The disclosure requirements of this section are not intended to apply to such internal communications.

    FEMA proposes to revise this section to cover communications from the time a notice of proposed rulemaking is published until FEMA issues a final regulatory action (such as a withdrawal of the notice of proposed rulemaking or a final rule). Under the current regulation, communication is only restricted during the open public comment period, which tends to defeat the purpose of transparency in development of the regulatory action, since once the comment period closes, ex parte communications can occur while the next regulatory action is being developed. To ensure transparency for the entire development of the rule from publication of the notice of proposed rulemaking until issuance of a final action, FEMA proposes to revise the applicability of its ex parte regulation to also cover the time between the close of a proposed rule comment period and the issuance of a final action.

    FEMA proposes to remove the introductory language of this section, which states that the section applies to rulemaking proceedings governed by the procedural requirements of 5 U.S.C. 553 (i.e., informal rulemaking). The purpose section of part 1 already limits the scope of part 1 to informal rulemaking so this introductory language to section 1.6 is unnecessary.

    FEMA proposes to add a provision noting that the ex parte restrictions do not apply to Tribal consultations. Executive Order 13175, Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments,10 and Presidential Memorandum of November 9, 2009, Tribal Consultation,11 require Federal agencies to consult with Tribes on actions that have Tribal implications. In order to facilitate and support these communications, FEMA encourages Tribal consultation early in the rule development process and does not impose ex parte restrictions on such consultations.

    10 65 FR 67249 (Nov. 9, 2000).

    11https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/the-press-office/memorandum-tribal-consultation-signed-president; see also FEMA's Tribal Consultation Policy, FP101-002.01, included in the docket for this rulemaking on www.regulations.gov and on FEMA's Web site at https://www.fema.gov/media-library/assets/documents/98120.

    Section 1.7 Regulations Agenda

    Section 1.7 contains outdated requirements that were part of the now-rescinded Executive Order 12291 regarding the government-wide regulations agenda. Current Executive Order 12866 also contains requirements that agencies must follow for the regulations agenda, as does the Regulatory Flexibility Act. FEMA proposes to remove these requirements, as OMB publishes the agenda on its Web site, which any member of the public may view at www.reginfo.gov, and because of Executive Order 12291's rescission.

    Section 1.8 Regulations Review

    Section 1.8 describes FEMA's intent to publish in the Federal Register, and keep updated, a plan for periodic review of existing rules at least within 10 years from the date of publication of a final rule. FEMA proposes to remove this section from part 1, as the process for review of existing rules has changed. President Trump recently issued Executive Order 13777, “Enforcing the Regulatory Reform Agenda,” which outlines specific requirements related to retrospective review.12 And past executive orders, such as Executive Order 13563, “Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review,” include certain retrospective review requirements as well.13 FEMA has actively participated in such reviews, and will continue to do so.

    12 82 FR 12285 (Mar. 1, 2017).

    13 76 FR 3821 (Jan. 21, 2011).

    Section 1.9 Regulatory Impact Analysis

    Section 1.9 lists the regulatory impact analysis requirements that were part of the now-rescinded Executive Order 12291. These requirements have been replaced by a series of executive orders and OMB Circular A-4, “Regulatory Analysis.” A copy of the circular is included in the docket for this rulemaking. FEMA must follow these guidelines when preparing a regulatory impact analysis for its rules. As these guidelines apply to the agency rather than the public, it is not necessary to include them in the CFR. Therefore, FEMA proposes to remove section 1.9 from its regulations rather than updating it with the new guidelines.

    Section 1.10 Initiation of Rulemaking

    This section addresses the process for initiating a rulemaking at FEMA, both internally by the Administrator of FEMA and externally via a petition for rulemaking. FEMA's process for initiating a rule is an internal agency matter, and the ultimate authority for initiating a rule resides with the Administrator. Thus, FEMA proposes to remove reference to the internal process for initiating a rule from its regulations. Initiation of a rule via a petition for rulemaking is addressed in a separate section (current section 1.18, which is renumbered as section 1.8 in this proposed rule). Therefore, as petitions for rulemaking are fully addressed in a separate section, FEMA proposes to remove section 1.10 in its entirety from the regulations.

    Section 1.11 Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

    Section 1.11 lists the requirements for the contents of an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPRM), a regulatory action that typically takes place to gather information for a possible future notice of proposed rulemaking. These ANPRM requirements are part of FEMA's internal procedures and controls for its regulatory actions; FEMA proposes to remove them from the CFR.

    Section 1.12 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

    Section 1.12 lists the requirements for the contents of a notice of proposed rulemaking, a regulatory action that notifies the public of various information, including but not limited to, the substance or terms of the proposed rule or a description of the subject matter and issues involved and a reference to the legal authority under which the proposed rule is issued. These elements are already required by statute; FEMA, therefore, proposes to remove them from the CFR.

    Section 1.12 also states that it is desirable that the proposed rule contain a target deadline for issuance of the regulation, and that to the extent feasible, this deadline be met. FEMA proposes to remove this provision because such a target, announced in a proposed rule, would too frequently be unduly speculative. For instance, FEMA does not presume that each proposed rule will result in a final rule.

    The final provision of section 1.12 states that if the proposed rule is one which contains a requirement for a collection of information, a copy of the rule will be furnished to OMB in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act. Under internal Federal government procedure, FEMA is required to submit all information collections, whether included with a rule or not, to OMB, via DHS. A regulation is not necessary for this function, and therefore FEMA proposes to remove it from the CFR.

    Section 1.13 Participation by Interested Persons

    Section 1.13 states that any interested person may participate in rulemaking proceedings by submitting written data, views, or arguments within the comment time stated in the notice. This is a requirement of the Administrative Procedure Act and FEMA includes it in all of its rulemaking notices for proposed rules and advance notices of proposed rulemakings. As it is not necessary to include in regulation, FEMA proposes to remove it from the CFR.

    Section 1.13 includes a provision stating that the Administrator may permit the filing of comments in response to original comments. FEMA proposes to remove this provision because it is unnecessary to include in the CFR.

    Section 1.13 also states that the Administrator may provide for oral presentation of views in additional proceedings; this is also addressed in section 1.14. FEMA proposes to remove these provisions from the CFR. FEMA's policy for providing for public hearings is addressed in FEMA's notices of proposed rulemaking.

    The last provision of section 1.13 states that FEMA will send copies of regulatory flexibility analyses to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration. As this provision is regarding internal agency procedure and does not affect the public, FEMA proposes to remove it from the regulation.

    Section 1.14 Additional Rulemaking Proceedings

    Section 1.14 states that the Administrator may invite interested persons to present oral arguments, appear at informal hearings, or participate in any other procedure affording opportunity for oral presentation of views. FEMA's current policy is to include in each notice of proposed rulemaking, as appropriate, a statement noting that any member of the public may submit a request for a public meeting. If a hearing is held, FEMA will publish notice of such in the Federal Register. This provision is not necessary to include in the CFR. Therefore, FEMA proposes to remove it.

    FEMA proposes to retain the provision indicating that FEMA will keep a transcript or minutes of any hearing, but proposes to move it to the section on hearings (currently section 1.15; renumbered as section 1.7 in the proposed rule). Note that FEMA considers any oral presentation a hearing; any oral presentation would fall under the provision addressing hearings (discussed below).

    Section 1.15 Hearings

    Section 1.15 addresses the nature of public hearings should FEMA hold one for a particular rulemaking. Any such public hearing is nonadversarial and for fact-finding only. FEMA proposes to remove the provision stating that formal rulemaking hearing procedures do not apply, since section 1.1 already limits the scope of part 1 to informal rulemaking.

    Section 1.16 Adoption of a Final Rule

    Section 1.16 addresses FEMA's procedure for issuing a final rule. Paragraph (a) states that FEMA must address any relevant significant issues set forth in comments received on the proposed rule. Paragraph (a) also requires the final rule to include a clear concise statement of the basis and purpose of the rule. These are Administrative Procedure Act requirements placed on agencies rather than the public and therefore FEMA proposes to remove these from the regulation.

    Paragraph (b) lists other information that FEMA may include in a final rule preamble. The information is similar to information covered by Administrative Committee of the Federal Register regulations at 1 CFR 18.12. There is no need to reiterate this list in FEMA's regulations. Therefore FEMA proposes to remove paragraph (b) from part 1.

    Paragraph (c) states that a statement shall be published at the time of publication of a final rule describing how the public may obtain copies of the final regulatory flexibility analysis. FEMA proposes to remove this provision because it is not necessary; FEMA automatically posts such analyses on www.regulations.gov for public viewing.

    Paragraph (d)(1) states that before approving any final major rule, FEMA will make a determination that the regulation is clearly within the authority delegated by law and consistent with congressional intent and include in the Federal Register at the time of promulgation a memorandum of law supporting that determination. FEMA proposes to remove this provision because it no longer reflects FEMA practice. FEMA includes the legal authority for the rule in the rulemaking document, and this is also a requirement of the Federal Register (each rulemaking must include an “authority citation”). Although FEMA internally makes a legal determination that the regulation is within FEMA's legal authorities, FEMA does not include in the Federal Register a memorandum of law supporting that determination.

    Paragraph (d)(2) states that FEMA must make a determination that the factual conclusions upon which the rule is based have substantial support in the agency record, viewed as a whole, with full attention to public comments in general and the comments of persons directly affected by the rule in particular. FEMA proposes to remove this provision.

    Section 1.17 Petitions for Reconsideration

    Section 1.17 states that FEMA will not consider petitions for reconsideration of a final rule, and that such petitions will be treated as petitions for rulemaking. This remains FEMA's policy, and FEMA proposes no revisions to this section, other than to revise the reference to section 1.18, which would become section 1.9 if this proposed rule is finalized.

    Section 1.18 Petitions for Rulemaking

    Section 1.18 addresses petitions for rulemaking. It states that any interested person may petition the Administrator for the issuance, amendment, or repeal of a rule, and for purposes of this section, the term “person” includes a “Federal, State, or local government or government agency.” FEMA proposes to revise the definition of “person” to include “any member of the public and any entity outside the Federal Executive branch.” FEMA considers any “petitions” from entities of the Federal Executive branch as internal to the government and not subject to the same requirements as petitions from the public. There is communication amongst Federal Executive branch agencies on a regular basis and any need for a rule would be raised through those channels. This is not a change from the current intent of this section, but FEMA is proposing this new language for the sake of clarity.

    This section states that petitions should be submitted to the “Rules Docket Clerk.” As FEMA no longer has a “Rules Docket Clerk,” FEMA proposes to change this to the “Regulatory Affairs Division,” which is the division responsible for processing any petitions to FEMA for rulemaking. FEMA also proposes to require that petitions for rulemaking be labeled as such, to avoid situations where simple correspondence is confused with a petition.

    Authority Citation

    FEMA proposes to revise the authority citation for part 1 by removing the reference to rescinded Executive Order 12291, as well as the references to the Reorganization Plan No. 3 of 1978, Executive Order 12127, and Executive Order 12148. The Reorganization Plan and Executive Orders 12127 and 12148 established FEMA as an agency in 1979 and established its functions. FEMA proposes to replace these cites with a citation to the Homeland Security Act of 2002, 6 U.S.C. 101 et seq., which provided organic authority for FEMA and made it a component of the Department of Homeland Security, and Department of Homeland Security Delegation 9001.1, which delegated specific functions back to FEMA.

    FEMA also proposes to remove the citation to the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) because references to that Act would no longer be included in part 1 if the proposed rule is finalized.

    FEMA proposes to retain the citations to the informal rulemaking provisions of the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 551 and 553) as these are the main authorities for this part.

    Change Chart

    The following chart lists the current section and how it is affected by the proposed rule:

    Current section Proposed rule 1.1 Purpose 1.1(a) 1.1(a). 1.1(b) Removed. 1.1(c) Removed. 1.1(d) Removed. 1.1(e) Removed. 1.2 Definitions 1.2(a) 1.2(a). 1.2(b) 1.2(b). 1.2(c) 1.2(c). 1.2(d) 1.2(d). 1.2(e) Removed. 1.3 Scope 1.3(a) 1.1(a). 1.3(b) Removed. 1.3(c) 1.1(b). 1.4 Policy and Procedures Removed, except 1.4(b) moved to 1.3. 1.5 Rules docket. 1.5(a) 1.4(a) & 1.5. 1.5(b) 1.4(b). 1.6 Ex parte communications 1.6 Introductory language Removed. 1.6(a) 1.6(a). 1.5(b) 1.6(b). 1.7 Regulations agendas Removed. 1.8 Regulations review Removed. 1.9 Regulatory impact analyses Removed. 1.10 Initiation of rulemaking 1.10 1.8/partially removed. 1.11 Advance notice of proposed rulemaking Removed. 1.12 Notice of proposed rulemaking Removed. 1.13 Participation by interested persons Removed. 1.14 Additional rulemaking proceedings 1.7(c)/partially removed. 1.15 Hearings. 1.15 (a) 1.7(a)/partially removed. 1.15(b) 1.7(b). 1.16 Adoption of a final rule Removed. 1.17 Petitions for reconsideration 1.9. 1.18 Petitions for rulemaking 1.8. IV. Regulatory Analyses Executive Orders 12866, 13563, and 13771

    Executive Orders 12866 (“Regulatory Planning and Review”) and 13563 (“Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review”) 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 (including potential economic, environmental, public health and safety effects, distributive impacts, and equity). Executive Order 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, of reducing costs, of harmonizing rules, and of promoting flexibility. Executive Order 13771 (“Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs”) directs agencies to reduce regulation and control regulatory costs and provides that “for every one new regulation issued, at least two prior regulations be identified for elimination, and that the cost of planned regulations be prudently managed and controlled through a budgeting process.”

    The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has not designated this rule a significant regulatory action under section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866. Accordingly, OMB has not reviewed it. As this rule is not a significant regulatory action, this rule is exempt from the requirements of Executive Order 13771. See OMB's Memorandum “Guidance Implementing Executive Order 13771, Titled `Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs' ” (April 5, 2017).

    This proposed rule would revise FEMA regulations pertaining to rulemaking by removing sections that are outdated or do not affect the public and update provisions that affect the public's participation in the rulemaking process. FEMA does not believe this rule imposes additional direct costs on the public or government.

    Regulatory Flexibility Act

    Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), as amended, 5 U.S.C. 601-612, agencies must consider the impact of their rulemakings on “small entities” (small businesses, small organizations and local governments). When the Administrative Procedure Act requires an agency to publish a notice of proposed rulemaking under 5 U.S.C. 553, the RFA requires a regulatory flexibility analysis for both the proposed rule and the final rule if the rulemaking could “have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.” The RFA also provides that in lieu of a regulatory flexibility analysis, the agency may certify in the rulemaking document that the rulemaking will not “have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities” along with a statement providing the factual basis for such certification. FEMA has voluntarily published a notice of proposed rulemaking in this case, notwithstanding that this rule is a rule of agency organization, procedure, or practice exempt from notice-and-comment rulemaking requirements. See 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(A).

    This proposed rule would revise FEMA regulations pertaining to rulemaking by removing sections that are outdated or do not affect the public and update provisions that affect the public's participation in the rulemaking process. This rule does not impose direct costs on small entities. Accordingly, and although FEMA is not required to make such certification, pursuant to section 605(b) of the RFA, 5 U.S.C. 605(b), the Administrator of FEMA certifies that this rule will not, if promulgated, have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

    Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

    The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995, 2 U.S.C. 658, 1501-1504, 1531-1536, 1571, pertains to any notice of proposed rulemaking which implements any rule that includes a Federal mandate that may result in the expenditure by State, local, and Tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100 million or more in any one year. If the rulemaking includes a Federal mandate, the Act requires an agency to prepare an assessment of the anticipated costs and benefits of the Federal mandate. The Act also pertains to any regulatory requirements that might significantly or uniquely affect small governments. Before establishing any such requirements, an agency must develop a plan allowing for input from the affected governments regarding the requirements.

    FEMA has determined that this rule will not result in the expenditure by State, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, nor by the private sector, of $100,000,000 or more in any one year as a result of a Federal mandate, and it will not significantly or uniquely affect small governments. Therefore, no actions are deemed necessary under the provisions of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995.

    Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

    Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), as amended, 44 U.S.C. 3501-3520, an agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information unless the agency obtains approval from OMB for the collection and the collection displays a valid OMB control number. See 44 U.S.C. 3506, 3507. FEMA has determined that this rulemaking does not contain any collections of information as defined by that Act. PRA regulations exempt general solicitations of comments from the public such as rulemakings. See 5 CFR 1320.3(h)(4).

    Privacy Act/E-Government Act

    Under the Privacy Act of 1974, 5 U.S.C. 552a, an agency must determine whether implementation of a proposed regulation will result in a system of records. A “record” is any item, collection, or grouping of information about an individual that is maintained by an agency, including, but not limited to, his/her education, financial transactions, medical history, and criminal or employment history and that contains his/her name, or the identifying number, symbol, or other identifying particular assigned to the individual, such as a finger or voice print or a photograph. See 5 U.S.C. 552a(a)(4). A “system of records” is a group of records under the control of an agency from which information is retrieved by the name of the individual or by some identifying number, symbol, or other identifying particular assigned to the individual. An agency cannot disclose any record which is contained in a system of records except by following specific procedures.

    The E-Government Act of 2002, 44 U.S.C. 3501 note, also requires specific procedures when an agency takes action to develop or procure information technology that collects, maintains, or disseminates information that is in an identifiable form. This Act also applies when an agency initiates a new collection of information that will be collected, maintained, or disseminated using information technology if it includes any information in an identifiable form permitting the physical or online contacting of a specific individual.

    This proposed rule does not create a new, nor impact a current, system of record. Therefore, this proposed rule does not require coverage under an existing or new Privacy Impact Assessment or System of Records Notice. Any member of the public or any non-Federal entity may submit comments on a rulemaking; all comments are posted on www.regulations.gov, and that Web site, as well as each FEMA rulemaking document requesting comments, includes a Privacy Notice informing the commenter that any comments will be posted for public viewing.

    Executive Order 13175, Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal Governments

    Executive Order 13175, “Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments,” 65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000, applies to agency regulations that have Tribal implications, that is, regulations that have substantial direct effects on one or more Indian tribes, on the relationship between the Federal Government and Indian Tribes, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities between the Federal Government and Indian Tribes. Under this Executive Order, to the extent practicable and permitted by law, no agency shall promulgate any regulation that has Tribal implications, that imposes substantial direct compliance costs on Indian Tribal governments, and that is not required by statute, unless funds necessary to pay the direct costs incurred by the Indian Tribal government or the Tribe in complying with the regulation are provided by the Federal Government, or the agency consults with Tribal officials.

    This rule does not have Tribal implications. Any member of the public and any non-Federal entity, including Tribes and Tribal members, may participate in Federal rulemaking as outlined in this proposed rule, and it is FEMA's policy that ex parte restrictions in rulemaking do not apply to Tribal consultations.

    Executive Order 13132, Federalism

    Executive Order 13132, “Federalism,” 64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999, sets forth principles and criteria that agencies must adhere to in formulating and implementing policies that have federalism implications, that is, 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.” Federal agencies must closely examine the statutory authority supporting any action that would limit the policymaking discretion of the States, and to the extent practicable, must consult with State and local officials before implementing any such action.

    FEMA has reviewed this proposed rule under Executive Order 13132 and has determined that this rule does 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, and therefore does not have federalism implications as defined by the Executive Order. It addresses agency procedures for rulemaking that affect the public; such rulemaking is a Federal process and does not affect State rulemaking processes.

    Congressional Review of Agency Rulemaking

    Under the Congressional Review of Agency Rulemaking Act (CRA), 5 U.S.C. 801-808, before a rule can take effect, the Federal agency promulgating the rule must submit to Congress and to the Government Accountability Office (GAO) a copy of the rule; a concise general statement relating to the rule, including whether it is a major rule; the proposed effective date of the rule; a copy of any cost-benefit analysis; descriptions of the agency's actions under the Regulatory Flexibility Act and the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act; and any other information or statements required by relevant executive orders.

    FEMA will send this rule to the Congress and to GAO pursuant to the CRA if the rule is finalized. The rule is not a “major rule” within the meaning of the CRA. It will not have an annual effect on the economy of $100,000,000 or more; it will not result in a major increase in costs or prices for consumers, individual industries, Federal, State, or local government agencies, or geographic regions; and it will not have significant adverse effects on competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or on the ability of United States-based enterprises to compete with foreign-based enterprises in domestic and export markets.

    List of Subjects in 44 CFR Part 1

    Administrative practice and procedure.

    For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Federal Emergency Management Agency proposes to revise 44 CFR part 1 as follows: PART 1—RULEMAKING, POLICY AND PROCEDURES Sec. 1.1 Purpose and scope. 1.2 Definitions. 1.3 Regulatory policy. 1.4 Public rulemaking docket. 1.5 Public comments. 1.6 Ex parte communications. 1.7 Hearings. 1.8 Petitions for rulemaking. 1.9 Petitions for reconsideration. Authority:

    5 U.S.C. 551, 553; 6 U.S.C. 101 et seq.; Department of Homeland Security Delegation 9001.1.

    § 1.1 Purpose and scope.

    (a) This part contains FEMA's procedures for informal rulemaking under the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 553) that affect the public.

    (b) This part does not apply to rules issued in accordance with the formal rulemaking provisions of the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 556, 557).

    § 1.2 Definitions.

    (a) Rule or regulation have the same meaning as those terms are defined in the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 551(4)).

    (b) Rulemaking means the FEMA process for considering and formulating the issuance, amendment, or repeal of a rule.

    (c) Administrator means the Administrator, FEMA, or an official to whom the Administrator has expressly delegated authority to issue rules.

    (d) FEMA means Federal Emergency Management Agency.

    § 1.3 Regulatory policy.

    (a) It is the general policy of FEMA to provide for public participation in rulemaking regarding its programs and functions, including matters that relate to public property, loans, grants, or benefits, or contracts, even though these matters are not subject to a requirement for notice and public comment rulemaking by law. This general policy is not intended to and does not create a right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable against the United States or its agencies or officers.

    (b) FEMA may depart from this general policy in its absolute discretion, including for its annual grant programs and in other cases as circumstances warrant.

    § 1.4 Public rulemaking docket.

    (a) FEMA maintains a public docket for each rulemaking after it is published in the Federal Register and until the rulemaking is closed and archived at the National Archives and Records Administration. The public docket includes every document published in the Federal Register in conjunction with a rulemaking. It also includes regulatory assessments and analyses, written comments from the public addressed to the merits of a proposed rule, comments from the public received in response to notices, or to withdrawals or terminations of a proposed rulemaking, requests for a public meeting, requests for extension of time, petitions for rulemaking, grants or denials of petitions or requests, and transcripts or minutes of informal hearings. The public rulemaking docket is maintained by the Regulatory Affairs Division, Office of Chief Counsel.

    (b) After FEMA establishes a public rulemaking docket, any person may examine docketed material during established business hours by prearrangement with the Regulatory Affairs Division, Office of Chief Counsel, FEMA, 500 C St. SW., Washington, DC 20472, and may obtain a copy of any docketed material (except for copyrighted material). FEMA also maintains a copy of each public docket electronically, with the exception of copyrighted material, on www.regulations.gov. To access the docket on www.regulations.gov, search for the docket ID associated with the rulemaking.

    (c) The docket for flood hazard elevation rules issued by the National Flood Insurance Program are partially maintained at the locality that is the subject of the rule. FEMA includes in the preamble of each flood hazard elevation rule the repository address for supporting material.

    § 1.5 Public comments.

    A member of the public may submit comments via mail or courier to the Regulatory Affairs Division, Office of Chief Counsel, Federal Emergency Management Agency, 500 C St. SW., Washington, DC 20472, or may submit comments electronically to the rulemaking docket at www.regulations.gov under the applicable docket ID.

    § 1.6 Ex parte communications.

    (a) All oral or written communications from outside the Federal Executive branch of significant information and argument respecting the merits of a rulemaking document, received after publication of a notice of proposed rulemaking, by FEMA or its offices and divisions or their personnel participating in the decision, must be summarized in writing and placed promptly in the public docket. This applies until the agency publishes a final regulatory action such as a withdrawal of the notice of proposed rulemaking or a final rule.

    (b) FEMA may conclude that restrictions on ex parte communications are necessitated at other times by considerations of fairness or for other reasons.

    (c) This section does not apply to Tribal consultations.

    § 1.7 Hearings.

    (a) When FEMA affords an opportunity for oral presentation, the hearing is an informal, nonadversarial, fact-finding proceeding. Any rulemaking issued in a proceeding under this part in which a hearing is held need not be based exclusively on the record of such hearing.

    (b) When such a hearing is provided, the Administrator will designate a representative to conduct the hearing.

    (c) The transcript or minutes of the hearing will be kept and filed in the public rulemaking docket.

    § 1.8 Petitions for rulemaking.

    (a) Any interested person may petition the Administrator for the issuance, amendment, or repeal of a rule. For purposes of this section, the term person includes any member of the public and any entity outside the Federal Executive branch of government. Each petitioner must:

    (1) Submit the petition to the Regulatory Affairs Division, Office of Chief Counsel, FEMA, 8NE, 500 C Street SW., Washington, DC 20472;

    (2) Label the petition with the following: “Petition for Rulemaking” or “Rulemaking Petition”;

    (3) Set forth the substance of the rule or amendment proposed or specify the rule sought to be repealed or amended;

    (4) Explain the interest of the petitioner in support of the action sought; and

    (5) Set forth all data and arguments available to the petitioner in support of the action sought.

    (b) No public procedures will be held directly on the petition before its disposition. If the Administrator finds that the petition contains adequate justification, a rulemaking proceeding will be initiated or a final rule will be issued as appropriate. If the Administrator finds that the petition does not contain adequate justification, the petition will be denied by letter or other notice, with a brief statement of the ground for denial.

    The Administrator may consider new evidence at any time; however, FEMA will not consider repetitious petitions for rulemaking.

    § 1.9 Petitions for reconsideration.

    Petitions for reconsideration of a final rule will not be considered. Such petitions, if filed, will be treated as petitions for rulemaking in accordance with § 1.8 of this part.

    Dated: May 30, 2017. Robert Fenton, Senior Official Performing the Duties of the Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11559 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9111-19-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Chapters II, III, IV, V, and VI RIN 0648-XF326 Plan for Periodic Review of Regulations AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice; request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS announces the existing rules that it is reviewing, as required, under section 610 of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, which had, or will have a significant impact on a substantial number of small entities, such as small businesses, small organizations, and small governmental jurisdictions. The intended effect of this document is to inform the public of the rules under review, to outline NMFS' review process, and to provide an opportunity to comment. In addition, information compiled through this routine action will be relevant to the regulatory reviews required under Executive Order 13771, “Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs,” and Executive Order 13777, “Enforcing the Regulatory Reform Agenda.”

    DATES:

    Written comments must be received by July 7, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments on this document, identified by NOAA-NMFS-2017-0054, by either of the following methods:

    Electronic Submission: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Go to http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2017-0054, click the “Comment Now!” icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments.

    Mail: Submit written comments to Kelly Denit, National Marine Fisheries Service, NOAA, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, 1315 East-West Highway, Silver Spring, MD 20910 (mark outside of envelope “Comments on 610 Review”).

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

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Tara Scott, (301) 427-8579 or Heather Sagar, (301) 427-8019.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq., requires that Federal agencies including NMFS take into account how their regulations affect “small entities,” including small businesses, small Governmental jurisdictions, and small organizations. Under the RFA, we must either prepare a Regulatory Flexibility Analysis or certify that the regulation, if put in place, will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities for any regulation proposed after January 1, 1981. Section 602 of the RFA requires that NMFS issue an Agenda of Regulations identifying rules under development that are likely to have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

    Section 610 of the RFA requires Federal agencies to review existing regulations. It requires that NMFS publish a plan in the Federal Register explaining how it will review its existing regulations which have or will have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. Regulations that became effective after January 1, 1981, must be reviewed within 10 years of the publication date of the final rule. Section 610(c) requires that we annually publish a list of final rules we will review during the succeeding 12 months in the Federal Register. The list must describe, explain the need for, and provide the legal basis for the rules being reviewed, as well as invite public comment on the rule.

    In addition, information compiled through this routine action under Section 610 of the RFA will be relevant to the regulatory reviews required under Executive Order 13771, “Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs,” and Executive Order 13777, “Enforcing the Regulatory Reform Agenda.”

    Criteria for Review of Existing Regulations

    The purpose of the review is to determine whether existing rules should be left unchanged, or whether they should be revised or rescinded to minimize significant economic impacts on a substantial number of small entities, consistent with the objectives of other applicable statutes. In deciding whether change is necessary, the RFA establishes five factors that NMFS must consider:

    (1) Whether the rule is still needed;

    (2) What type of complaints or comments were received concerning the rule from the public;

    (3) The complexity of the rule;

    (4) How much the rule overlaps, duplicates or conflicts with other Federal rules, and, to the extent feasible, with State and local governmental rules; and

    (5) How long it has been since the rule has been evaluated or how much the technology, economic conditions, or other factors have changed in the area affected by the rule.

    Plan for Periodic Review of Rules

    Below is the list of rules and their summaries issued in 2010 that we will review by December 31, 2017, consistent with RFA Section 610. This list includes rules issues in 2010 for which initial and final regulatory flexibility analyses were completed.

    1. Pacific Halibut Fisheries; Limited Access for Guided Sport Charter. RIN 0648-AW92 (75 FR 553; January 5, 2010). NMFS issued regulations creating a limited access system for charter vessels in the guided sport fishery for Pacific halibut in waters of International Pacific Halibut Commission Regulatory Areas 2C (Southeast Alaska) and 3A (Central Gulf of Alaska). This limited access system limited the number of charter vessels that may participate in the guided sport fishery for halibut in these areas. NMFS issued a charter halibut permit to a licensed charter fishing business owner based on his or her past participation in the charter halibut fishery and to a Community Quota Entity representing specific rural communities. All charter halibut permit holders were subject to limits on the number of permits they may hold and on the number of charter vessel anglers who may catch and retain halibut on permitted charter vessels. This action was necessary to achieve the approved halibut fishery management goals of the North Pacific Fishery Management Council. The intended effect was to curtail growth of fishing capacity in the guided sport fishery for halibut. This action was conducted by NMFS under authority of the Northern Pacific Halibut Act of 1982.

    2. International Fisheries; Western and Central Pacific Fisheries for Highly Migratory Species; Initial Implementation of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Convention. RIN 0648-AV63 (75 FR 3335; January 21, 2010). NMFS issued regulations under authority of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Convention Implementation Act, which authorized the Secretary of Commerce to promulgate regulations needed to carry out the obligations of the U.S. under the Convention on the Conservation and Management of Highly Migratory Fish Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean, including implementing the decisions of the Commission for the Conservation and Management of Highly Migratory Fish Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean. The regulations included requirements related to permitting, vessel monitoring systems, vessel observers, vessel markings, reporting and recordkeeping, at-sea transshipment, and boarding and inspection on the high seas, among others. NMFS has determined that this action was necessary for the United States to satisfy its international obligations under the Convention, to which it is a Contracting Party. It has the effect of requiring that all relevant U.S. fishing vessels were operated in conformance with the provisions of the Convention.

    3. Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to Commercial Fishing Operations; Harbor Porpoise Take Reduction Plan Regulations. RIN 0648-AW51 (75 FR 7383; February 19, 2010). NMFS issued this final rule to amend the regulations implementing the Harbor Porpoise Take Reduction Plan to address the increased incidental mortality and serious injury of the Gulf of Maine/Bay of Fundy stock of harbor porpoises (Phocoena phocoena) in gillnet fisheries throughout the stock's U.S. range. This action was conducted by NMFS under the authority of the Marine Mammal Protection Act.

    4. Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish Fisheries; Amendment 10. RIN 0648-AY00 (75 FR 11441; March 11, 2010). NMFS implemented approved measures in Amendment 10 to the Atlantic Mackerel, Squid, and Butterfish (MSB) Fishery Management Plan (FMP). Amendment 10 was developed by the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council to bring the FMP into compliance with Magnuson-Stevens Act requirements by establishing a rebuilding program that allows the butterfish stock to rebuild and protects the long-term health and stability of the stock; and by minimizing bycatch and the fishing mortality of unavoidable bycatch, to the extent practicable, in the MSB fisheries. Amendment 10 increased the minimum codend mesh size requirement for the long fin squid fishery; established a butterfish rebuilding program with a butterfish mortality cap for the long fin squid fishery; established a 72-hr trip notification requirement for the long fin squid fishery; and required an annual assessment of the butterfish rebuilding program by the Council's Scientific and Statistical Committee. This rule also made minor, technical corrections to the existing regulations. This action was conducted by NMFS under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.

    5. Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act Provisions; Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Northeast (NE) Multispecies Fishery; Amendment 16; Final Rule. RIN 0648-AW72 (75 FR 18261; April 9, 2010). NMFS issued the final rule to implement measures approved under Amendment 16 to the NE Multispecies Fishery Management Plan. Amendment 16 was developed by the New England Fishery Management Council as part of the biennial adjustment process in the FMP to update status determination criteria for all regulated NE multispecies and ocean pout stocks; to adopt rebuilding programs for NE multispecies stocks newly classified as being overfished and subject to overfishing; and to revise management measures, including significant revisions to the sector management measures, necessary to end overfishing, rebuild overfished regulated NE multispecies and ocean pout stocks, and mitigate the adverse economic impacts of increased effort controls. This final rule also implemented new requirements under Amendment 16 for establishing acceptable biological catch (ABC), annual catch limits (ACLs), and accountability measures (AMs) for each stock managed under the FMP, pursuant to the Magnuson-Stevens Act. Finally, this action added Atlantic wolffish to the list of species managed by the FMP. This action was necessary to address the results of the most recent stock assessment, which indicate that several additional regulated species are overfished and subject to overfishing, and that stocks currently classified as overfished require additional reductions in fishing mortality to rebuild by the end of their rebuilding periods. This action was conducted by NMFS under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Act

    6. Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Reef Fish Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico; Amendment 31. RIN 0648-AX67. (75 FR 21512; April 26, 2010). NMFS issued this final rule to implement Amendment 31 to the Fishery Management Plan for the Reef Fish Resources of the Gulf of Mexico prepared by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council. This final rule implemented restrictions applicable to the bottom longline component of the reef fish fishery in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of the eastern Gulf of Mexico. The restrictions included a bottom longline endorsement requirement, a seasonal closed area, and a limitation on the number of hooks that can be possessed and fished. The intent of this rule was to balance the continued operation of the bottom longline component of the reef fish fishery in the eastern Gulf while maintaining adequate protective measures for sea turtles. This action was conducted by NMFS under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.

    7. Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Atlantic Shark Management Measures; Amendment 3; Final Rule. RIN 0648-AW65 (75 FR 30483; June 1, 2010). NMFS published this final rule to implement the Final Amendment 3 to the Consolidated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Fishery Management Plan (FMP). As it developed Amendment 3, NMFS examined a full range of management alternatives available to rebuild blacknose sharks and end overfishing of blacknose and shortfin mako sharks, consistent with recent stock assessments, the Magnuson-Stevens Act, and other applicable law, and evaluated options for managing smooth dogfish as a highly migratory species under the HMS FMP. This final rule implemented the final conservation and management measures in Amendment 3 for blacknose sharks, shortfin mako sharks, and smooth dogfish. In order to reduce confusion with spiny dogfish regulations, this final rule places both smooth dogfish and Florida smoothhound into the “smoothhound shark complex.” This final rule also announced the opening date and 2010 annual quotas for small coastal sharks. These changes could have affected all fishermen, commercial and recreational, who fish for sharks in the Atlantic Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Caribbean Sea. This action was conducted by NMFS under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.

    8. Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants: Final Rulemaking to Establish Take Prohibitions for the Threatened Southern Distinct Population Segment of North American Green Sturgeon. RIN 0648-AV94 (75 FR 30714; June 2, 2010). This final Endangered Species Act (ESA) section 4(d) rule represented the regulations that we, NMFS, believe necessary and advisable to conserve the threatened Southern Distinct Population Segment of North American green sturgeon (Acipenser medirostris; hereafter Southern DPS). We applied the prohibitions listed under ESA section 9 for the Southern DPS, and we highlighted specific categories of activities that were likely to result in take of Southern DPS fish. We did not find it necessary and advisable to apply the take prohibitions to certain categories of activities that contribute to conserving the Southern DPS. We also provided a variety of methods by which take of the Southern DPS may have been authorized. This document also announces the availability of a final environmental assessment that analyzed the environmental impacts of promulgating the 4(d) regulations for the Southern DPS. This action was conducted by NMFS under the authority of the ESA.

    9. Pacific Halibut Fisheries; Limited Access for Guided Sport Charter Vessels in Alaska. RIN 0648-AY85 (75 FR 56903; September 17, 2010). NMFS issued regulations amending the limited access program for charter vessels in the guided sport fishery for Pacific halibut in the waters of International Pacific Halibut Commission Regulatory Area 2C (Southeast Alaska) and Area 3A (Central Gulf of Alaska). These regulations revised the method of assigning angler endorsements to charter halibut permits to more closely align each endorsement with the greatest number of charter vessel anglers reported for each vessel that a charter business used to qualify for a charter halibut permit. This action was necessary to achieve the halibut fishery management goals of the North Pacific Fishery Management Council. This action was conducted by NMFS under authority of the Northern Pacific Halibut Act of 1982.

    10. Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Modified Nonpelagic Trawl Gear and Habitat Conservation in the Bering Sea Subarea. RIN 0648-AY34 (75 FR 61642; October 6, 2010). NMFS issued a final rule that implemented Amendment 94 to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area. Amendment 94 required participants using nonpelagic trawl gear in the directed fishery for flatfish in the Bering Sea subarea to modify the trawl gear to raise portions of the gear off the ocean bottom. Amendment 94 also changed the boundaries of the Northern Bering Sea Research Area to establish the Modified Gear Trawl Zone (MGTZ) and to expand the Saint Matthew Island Habitat Conservation Area. Nonpelagic trawl gear also was required to be modified to raise portions of the gear off the ocean bottom if used in any directed fishery for groundfish in the MGTZ. This action was necessary to reduce potential adverse effects of nonpelagic trawl gear on bottom habitat, to protect additional blue king crab habitat near St. Matthew Island, and to allow for efficient flatfish harvest as the distribution of flatfish in the Bering Sea changes. This action was intended to promote the goals and objectives of the Magnuson- Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, the FMP, and other applicable laws. This action was conducted by NMFS under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.

    11. Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Regulatory Amendment to the Fishery Management Plan for the Reef Fish Fishery of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. RIN 0648-AY05 (75 FR 67247; November 2, 2010). NMFS issued this final rule that implemented a regulatory amendment to the Fishery Management Plan for the Reef Fish Fishery of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands prepared by the Caribbean Fishery Management Council. This rule modified the Bajo de Sico seasonal closure from a 3-month closure to a 6-month closure, and prohibits fishing for and possession of Caribbean reef fish in or from the EEZ portion of Bajo de Sico during the closure. The final rule also prohibited anchoring in the EEZ portion of Bajo de Sico year-round. In addition to the measures contained in the regulatory amendment, this final rule also added spear to the list of allowable gears in the commercial sector of the Caribbean reef fish fishery and revises the title of the FMP in the list of authorized fisheries and gear. The intended effect of this rule was to provide further protection for red hind spawning aggregations and large snappers and groupers, and better protect the essential fish habitat where these species reside. This action was conducted by NMFS under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.

    12. Fisheries of the Exclusive Economic Zone Off Alaska; Groundfish Observer Program. RIN 0648-AW24 (75 FR 69016; November 10, 2010). NMFS issued a final rule to amend regulations implementing the North Pacific Groundfish Observer Program (Observer Program). This action was necessary to improve the operational efficiency of the Observer Program, as well as to improve the catch, bycatch, and biological data collected by observers for conservation and management of the North Pacific groundfish fisheries, including those data collected through scientific research activities. The final rule was intended to promote the goals and objectives of the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area and the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska. This action was conducted by NMFS under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.

    13. Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Reef Fish Fishery of the Gulf of Mexico; Red Grouper Management Measures. RIN 0648-BA04 (75 FR74656; December 1, 2010). NMFS issued this final rule to implement actions identified in a regulatory amendment to the Fishery Management Plan for the Reef Fish Resources of the Gulf of Mexico prepared by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council. This final rule reduced the commercial quota for red grouper and, thus, the combined commercial quota for shallow water grouper species, and requires vessels with valid commercial Gulf of Mexico reef fish permits to mark their buoy gear with the official vessel number. This rule also implemented minor revisions to codified text, including a revised definition of buoy gear, re-codification of the commercial and recreational quotas for greater amberjack, revision of the recreational accountability measure for greater amberjack, and removal of outdated language for the red snapper individual fishing quota program. The intended effect of this final rule was to help prevent overfishing of red grouper while achieving optimum yield by reducing red grouper harvest, consistent with the findings of the recent stock assessment for this species, and to implement technical corrections to the regulations. This action was conducted by NMFS under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.

    14. Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; 2011 Commercial Fishing Season and Adaptive Management Measures for the Atlantic Shark Fishery. RIN 0648-AY98 (75 FR 76302; December 8, 2010). This final rule established opening dates and adjusted quotas for the 2011 fishing season for sandbar sharks, non-sandbar large coastal sharks (LCS), blacknose shark, non-blacknose small coastal shark (SCS), blue sharks, porbeagle sharks, and pelagic sharks (other than porbeagle or blue sharks) based on any over- and/or underharvests experienced during the 2009 and 2010 Atlantic commercial shark fishing seasons. NMFS was taking this action to establish the 2011 adjusted fishing quotas and to open the commercial fishing seasons for the Atlantic sandbar shark, non-sandbar LCS, blacknose shark, non-blacknose SCS, and pelagic shark fisheries based on over- and underharvests from the 2009 and 2010 fishing season. This action was expected to affect commercial shark fishermen in the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico regions. In addition to establishing opening dates and adjusting annual quotas, this final rule implemented adaptive management measures, including flexible opening dates for the fishing season, as well as inseason adjustments to shark trip limits, to provide flexibility in management in the furtherance of equitable fishing opportunities, to the extent practicable, for commercial shark fishermen in all regions and areas. These actions were expected to affect commercial shark fishermen in the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico regions. This action was conducted by NMFS under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.

    15. Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Snapper-Grouper Fishery Off the Southern Atlantic States; Amendment 17A; Emergency Rule To Delay Effectiveness of the Snapper-Grouper Area Closure; Final Rule and Temporary Rule. RIN 0648-AY10 (75 FR 76873; December 9, 2010). NMFS issued this final rule to implement Amendment 17A to the Fishery Management Plan for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region (FMP), as prepared and submitted by the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council. This final rule established an ACL of zero for red snapper, which means all harvest and possession of red snapper in or from the South Atlantic EEZ is prohibited, and for a vessel with a Federal commercial or charter vessel/headboat permit for South Atlantic snapper-grouper, harvest and possession of red snapper is prohibited in or from State or Federal waters. This rule also implemented an area closure for South Atlantic snapper-grouper that extends from southern Georgia to northern Florida where harvest and possession of all snapper-grouper species is prohibited (except when fishing with black sea bass pots or spearfishing gear for species other than red snapper), and requires the use of non-stainless steel circle hooks when fishing for snapper-grouper species with hook and line gear north of 28 degrees N. latitude in the South Atlantic EEZ. Additionally, Amendment 17A established a rebuilding plan for red snapper and requires a monitoring program as the AM for red snapper. The intended effects of this rule were to end overfishing of South Atlantic red snapper and rebuild the stock. This action was conducted by NMFS under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.

    16. Fisheries of the Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico, and South Atlantic; Snapper-Grouper Fishery Off the Southern Atlantic States; Amendment 17B. RIN 0648-AY11 (75 FR 82280; December 20, 2010). NMFS issued this final rule to implement Amendment 17B to the Fishery Management Plan for the Snapper-Grouper Fishery of the South Atlantic Region, as prepared and submitted by the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council. This final rule established ACLs and AMs for eight snapper-grouper species in the FMP that were undergoing overfishing, and for black grouper, which was recently assessed and determined to not be undergoing overfishing or overfished; modified management measures to limit total mortality of those species to the ACL; and added ACLs, annual catch targets (ACTs), and AMs to the list of management measures that may be amended via the framework process. The intent of this final rule was to address overfishing of eight snapper-grouper species while maintaining catch levels consistent with achieving optimum yield. This action was conducted by NMFS under the authority of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.

    Availability of Completed Reviews

    NMFS will make available a copy of this notice and the completed reviews to the public at: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/sfa/laws_policies/economic_social/index.html.

    Dated: June 2, 2017. Margo B. Schulze-Haugen, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11815 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    82 108 Wednesday, June 7, 2017 Notices DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Food and Nutrition Service Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection; Comments Request—Assessing the Child Nutrition State Administrative Expense Allocation Formula AGENCY:

    Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice invites the general public and other public agencies to comment on this proposed information collection. This collection is a new collection. The primary purpose of this study is to assess the effectiveness of the current formula used for State Administrative Expense (SAE) allocations for Child Nutrition Programs, identify and examine factors that influence State spending, and develop and test a range of possible alternatives to improve the SAE allocation formula.

    DATES:

    Written comments must be received on or before August 7, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

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

    Comments may be sent to: Jinee Burdg, MPP, RDN, LDN, Food and Nutrition Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, 3101 Park Center Drive, Alexandria, VA 22302. Comments may also be submitted via fax to the attention of Jinee Burdg at 703-305-2744 or via email to [email protected] Comments will also be accepted through the Federal eRulemaking Portal. Go to http://www.regulations.gov, and follow the online instructions for submitting comments electronically.

    All written comments will be open for public inspection at the office of the Food and Nutrition Service during regular business hours (8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday) at 3101 Park Center Drive, Alexandria, Virginia 22302.

    All responses to this notice will be summarized and included in the request for Office of Management and Budget approval. All comments will be a matter of public record.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Requests for additional information or copies of this information collection should be directed to Jinee Burdg at 703-305-2744.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title: Assessing the Child Nutrition State Administrative Expense Allocation Formula.

    Form Number: Not applicable.

    OMB Number: Not Yet Assigned.

    Expiration Date: Not Yet Determined.

    Type of Request: New collection.

    Abstract: USDA's Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) administers Child Nutrition Programs (CNPs) that provide healthy food to children including the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), School Breakfast Program (SBP), Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP), Special Milk Program (SMP), and the Food Distribution Program (FDP) for schools. State agencies are responsible for oversight and administration of the CNPs, including monitoring program operations and distributing Federal cash reimbursements and USDA Foods. CNPs are operated by a variety of local public and private providers that enter into agreements with State agencies, including school food authorities, local government agencies, nonprofit sponsoring organizations, child care centers, and adult care centers, among others.

    State agencies that administer these CNPs include Education, Agriculture, Health, and Human Services and Social Services agencies. In some States, all of these CNPs are administered by one State agency (Education or Agriculture), while in other States two or more agencies administer these programs. For example, in several States the agency that administers the FDP for schools is different than the agency that administers the other CNPs.

    States receive Child Nutrition State Administrative Expense (SAE) funds from the Federal government to help cover their administrative costs.1 SAE funds are appropriated annually to USDA FNS under the authority of Section 7(a) of the Child Nutrition Act of 1966 (the Act).2 The Act sets forth the total amount of funds available for SAE and a formula for allocating the majority of the funds to States—commonly referred to as the “nondiscretionary” allocation. It also provides USDA with authority to decide how to allocate remaining funds, i.e., the “discretionary” allocation. Program regulations at 7 CFR 235.4 include the statutory allocation formula as well as the formula USDA adopted for discretionary allocation of the funds. The Act also sets funds availability at two years, authorizes a reallocation process for unused funds, and requires a State plan for use of the funds, approved by FNS. SAE funds can be spent on reasonable, allocable, and necessary expenses incurred by the State including, but not limited to, salary and benefits, staff training, office equipment, support services, travel, monitoring and technical assistance activities. Funds that are not used by a State are returned for reallocation to other States; by law, no more than 20 percent of the initial allocation may be carried over by a State to the next fiscal year. Finally, the Act imposes a “State Funding Requirement,” under which States must contribute no less than their level of contribution in Fiscal Year 1977 to the SAE budget.

    1 Two other child nutrition programs—the Summer Food Service Program and the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program—also receive administrative funding from FNS. Because these funds are allocated separately from State Administrative Expense funds, these programs are not covered by this study.

    2 42 U.S.C. 1776(a).

    FNS is conducting a study, Assessing the Child Nutrition State Administrative Expense Allocation Formula, to assess the effectiveness of the current formula used for SAE allocations, identify and examine factors that influence State spending of SAE funds, and develop and test a range of possible alternatives to improve the SAE allocation formula. The study approach includes a review of historical spending and allocation patterns, case studies of 12 States, and an assessment of alternative formulas. In each State selected for case study, Directors and key staff from all State agencies that receive SAE funds will be included.

    Affected Public: State, Local or Tribal government. The burden for all respondents is broken down in the table below.

    Type of Respondents: State agency Directors and key State agency staff with responsibility for SAE funding.

    Estimated Number of Respondents: The total estimated number of respondents is 88 (88 respondents and 0 non-respondents). This includes: 22 State Directors and 66 State agency key staff with responsibility for SAE funding.

    Estimated Frequency of Response: The estimated frequency of response is 4.83 annually.

    Estimated Total Annual Responses: The total estimated number of responses for data collection is 425.

    Estimated Time per Respondent: The estimated time of response varies from 1 minute to 2 hours, depending on the respondent group and activity. The recruitment (electronic study notification letter) for each respondent type will take 5 minutes (0.083 hours), and scheduling interviews for each respondent type will take 10 minutes (0.167 hours). The pre-visit telephone interview with State Directors will take 45 minutes (0.750 hours). The in-depth on-site interview with State Directors and key staff will take 2 hours, each. Interview follow up will take 10 minutes (0.167 hours) among State Directors and key staff. Thank you emails to the State Directors and key staff will take 1 minute, each (0.017 hours). The average estimated time across all respondents is 32 minutes (0.528 hours).

    Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: The total public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated at 224.5 hours (annually). The estimated burden for each type of respondent is provided in the table below.

    EN07JN17.000 Dated: May 23, 2017. Jessica Shahin, Acting Administrator, Food and Nutrition Service.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11730 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-30-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration Request for Extension and Revision of a Currently Approved Information Collection Under the Packers and Stockyards Act AGENCY:

    Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice and request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    This notice announces the Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration's (GIPSA) intention to request that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approve a 3-year extension of a currently approved information collection in support of the reporting and recordkeeping requirements under the Packers and Stockyards Act of 1921, as amended and supplemented (P&S Act). This approval is required under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA).

    DATES:

    We will consider comments that we receive by August 7, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    We invite you to submit comments on this notice. You may submit comments by any of the following methods:

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

    Hardcopy: Mail, hand deliver, or courier to Dexter Thomas, GIPSA, USDA, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Room 2530-S, Washington, DC 20250-3604.

    Fax: (202) 690-2173.

    Instructions: All comments should refer to the date and page number of this issue of the Federal Register. The information collection package, public comments and other documents relating to this action will be available for public inspection during regular business hours (7 CFR 1.27(b)). Please call GIPSA's Management and Budget Services at (202) 720-8479 to arrange a viewing of these documents.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Catherine Grasso, Program Analyst, Litigation and Economic Analysis Division at (202)720-7201 or [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    GIPSA administers and enforces the P&S Act (7 U.S.C. 181-229, 229c). The P&S Act prohibits unfair, deceptive, and fraudulent practices by livestock market agencies, dealers, stockyard owners, meat packers, swine contractors, and live poultry dealers in the livestock, poultry, and meatpacking industries.

    Title: Packers and Stockyards Program Reporting and Recordkeeping Requirements.

    OMB Number: 0580-0015.

    Expiration Date of Approval: November 30, 2017.

    Type of Request: Extension and revision of a currently approved information collection.

    Abstract: The P&S Act and the regulations issued under the P&S Act authorize the collection of information for the purpose of enforcing the P&S Act and regulations and for conducting studies requested by Congress. Through the forms in this information collection, GIPSA's Packers and Stockyards Program (P&SP) gathers information that keeps P&SP current on the ownership and operations of regulated entities which permit P&SP oversight of the regulated entities. For example, P&SP gathers information regarding the number of head of livestock purchased and the cost of the livestock to determine if the entity is adequately bonded to protect the livestock sellers. The information regarding the amount of livestock purchased is also consolidated for public reporting in GIPSA's annual report. Other financial information is gathered to determine if the regulated entities are operating while solvent as required by the P&S Act. This information collection is necessary for GIPSA to monitor and examine financial, competitive, and trade practices in the livestock, meat packing and poultry industries. The purpose of this notice is to solicit comments from the public concerning GIPSA's information collection.

    Estimate of Burden: Public reporting and recordkeeping burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 1.73 hours per response.

    Respondents (Affected Public): Livestock auction markets, livestock dealers, packer buyers, meat packers, and live poultry dealers.

    Estimated Number of Respondents: 22,900.

    Estimated Number of Responses per Respondent: 3.2.

    Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 348,328 hours.

    As required by the PRA (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)) and its implementing regulations (5 CFR 1320.8(d)(1)(i)), GIPSA specifically requests comments on: (1) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (2) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

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

    Authority:

    44 U.S.C. 3506 and 5 CFR 1320.8.

    Randall D. Jones, Acting Administrator, Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11806 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-KD-P
    DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Rural Business-Cooperative Service Inviting Applications for Socially-Disadvantaged Groups Grants AGENCY:

    Rural Business-Cooperative Service, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    This Notice announces that the Rural Business-Cooperative Service (Agency) is accepting fiscal year (FY) 2017 applications for the Socially-Disadvantaged Groups Grant (SDGG) program. The Agency will publish the program funding level on the SDGG Web site located at http://www.rd.usda.gov/programs-services/socially-disadvantaged-groups-grant. Expenses incurred in developing applications are the responsibility of the applicant.

    The purpose of this program is to provide technical assistance to Socially-Disadvantaged Groups in rural areas. Eligible applicants include Cooperatives, Groups of Cooperatives, and Cooperative Development Centers. This program supports Rural Development's (RD) mission of improving the quality of life for rural Americans and commitment to directing resources to those who most need them.

    DATES:

    Completed applications for grants must be submitted on paper or electronically according to the following deadlines:

    Paper copies must be postmarked and mailed, shipped, or sent overnight no later than August 1, 2017. You may also hand carry your application to one of our field offices, but it must be received by close of business on the deadline date.

    Electronic copies must be received by http://www.grants.gov no later than midnight Eastern Time July 25, 2017. Late applications are not eligible for funding under this Notice and will not be evaluated.

    ADDRESSES:

    You should contact the USDA Rural Development State Office (State Office) located in the State where you are headquartered if you have questions. Contact information for State Offices can be found at: http://www.rd.usda.gov/contact-us/state-offices. You are encouraged to contact your State Office well in advance of the application deadline to discuss your project and ask any questions about the application process. Program guidance as well as application templates may be obtained at http://www.rd.usda.gov/programs-services/socially-disadvantaged-groups-grant or by contacting your State Office.

    If you want to submit an electronic application, follow the instructions for the SDGG funding announcement located at http://www.grants.gov. Please review the Grants.gov Web site at http://grants.gov/applicants/organization_registration.jsp for instructions on the process of registering your organization as soon as possible to ensure you are able to meet the electronic application deadline. You are strongly encouraged to file your application early and allow sufficient time to manage any technical issues that may arise. If you want to submit a paper application, send it to the State Office located in the State where you are headquartered. If you are headquartered in Washington, DC, please contact the Grants Division, Cooperative Programs, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, at (202) 690-1374 for guidance on where to submit your application.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Grants Division, Cooperative Programs, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, United States Department of Agriculture, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., MS 3253, Room 4208-South, Washington, DC 20250-3250, or call 202-690-1374.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Overview

    Federal Agency Name: USDA Rural Business-Cooperative Service.

    Funding Opportunity Title: Socially-Disadvantaged Groups Grant.

    Announcement Type: Initial Notice.

    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number: 10.871.

    Dates: Application Deadline. You must submit your complete application by August 1, 2017, or it will not be considered for funding. Electronic applications must be received by http://www.grants.gov no later than midnight Eastern Time, July 25, 2017, or it will not be considered for funding.

    Paperwork Reduction Act

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act, the paperwork burden associated with this Notice has been approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under OMB Control Number 0570-0052.

    A. Program Description

    The SDGG program is authorized by section 310B (e)(11) of the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act (7 U.S.C. 1932 (e)(11)). The primary objective of the SDGG program is to provide Technical Assistance to Socially-Disadvantaged Groups. Grants are available for Cooperative Development Centers, individual Cooperatives, or Groups of Cooperatives that serve Socially-Disadvantaged Groups and where a majority of their board of directors or governing board is comprised of individuals who are members of Socially-Disadvantaged Groups.

    Definitions

    The definitions you need to understand are as follows:

    Agency—Rural Business-Cooperative Service, an agency of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development or a successor agency.

    Conflict of Interest—A situation in which a person or entity has competing personal, professional, or financial interests that make it difficult for the person or business to act impartially. Federal procurement standards prohibit transactions that involve a real or apparent conflict of interest for owners, employees, officers, agents, or their immediate family members having a financial or other interest in the outcome of the project; or that restrict open and free competition for unrestrained trade. Specifically, project funds may not be used for services or goods going to, or coming from, a person or entity with a real or apparent conflict of interest, including, but not limited to, owner(s) and their immediate family members. Examples of conflicts of interest include using grant funds to pay a member of the applicant's board of directors to provide proposed Technical Assistance to Socially-Disadvantaged Groups; pay a cooperative member to provide proposed Technical Assistance to other members of the same cooperative; and pay an immediate family member of the applicant to provide proposed Technical Assistance to Socially-Disadvantaged Groups.

    Cooperative—A business or organization owned by and operated for the benefit of those using its services and where a majority of the board of directors or governing board is comprised of individuals who are members of Socially-Disadvantaged Groups. Profits and earnings generated by the cooperative are distributed among the members, also known as user-owners.

    Cooperative Development Center—A nonprofit corporation or institution of higher education operated by the grantee for cooperative or business development and where a majority of the board of directors or governing board is comprised of individuals who are members of Socially-Disadvantaged Groups. It may or may not be an independent legal entity separate from the grantee.

    Feasibility Study—An analysis of the economic, market, technical, financial, and management feasibility of a proposed Project.

    Group of Cooperatives—A group of Cooperatives whose primary focus is to provide assistance to Socially-Disadvantaged Groups and where a majority of the board of directors or governing board is comprised of individuals who are members of Socially-Disadvantaged Groups.

    Operating Cost—The day-to-day expenses of running a business; for example: Utilities, rent on the office space a business occupies, salaries, depreciation, marketing and advertising, and other basic overhead items.

    Participant Support Costs—Direct costs for items such as stipends or subsistence allowances, travel allowances, and registration fees paid to or on behalf of participants or trainees (but not employees) in connection with conferences, or training projects.

    Project—Includes all activities to be funded by the Socially-Disadvantaged Groups Grant.

    Rural and Rural Area—Any area of a State:

    (1) Not in a city or town that has a population of more than 50,000 inhabitants, according to the latest decennial census of the United States; and

    (2) The contiguous and adjacent urbanized area,

    (3) Urbanized areas that are rural in character as defined by 7 U.S.C. 1991(a)(13).

    (4) For the purposes of this definition, cities and towns are incorporated population centers with definite boundaries, local self-government, and legal powers set forth in a charter granted by the State. Notwithstanding any other provision of this paragraph, within the areas of the County of Honolulu, Hawaii, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Secretary may designate any part of the areas as a rural area if the Secretary determines that the part is not urban in character, other than any area included in the Honolulu census designated place (CDP) or the San Juan CDP.

    Rural Development—A mission area within USDA consisting of the Office of Under Secretary for Rural Development, Rural Business-Cooperative Services, Rural Housing Service, and Rural Utilities Service and any successors.

    Socially-Disadvantaged Group—A group whose members have been subjected to racial, ethnic, or gender prejudice because of their identity as members of a group without regard to their individual qualities.

    State—Includes each of the 50 states, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands of the United States, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and, as may be determined by the Secretary to be feasible, appropriate and lawful, the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands and the Republic of Palau.

    Technical Assistance—An advisory service performed for the purpose of assisting Cooperatives or groups that want to form Cooperatives such as market research, product and/or service improvement, legal advice and assistance, Feasibility Study, business planning, marketing plan development, and training.

    B. Federal Award Information

    Type of Award: Competitive Grant.

    Fiscal Year Funds: FY 2017.

    Total Funding: $3,000,000.

    Maximum Award: $175,000.

    Project Period: 1 year.

    Anticipated Award Date: September 29, 2017.

    C. Eligibility Information

    Applicants must meet all of the following eligibility requirements. Applications which fail to meet any of these requirements by the application deadline will be deemed ineligible and will not be evaluated further.

    1. Eligible Applicants. Grants may be made to individual Cooperatives, Groups of Cooperatives, and Cooperative Development Centers that serve Socially-Disadvantaged Groups and where a majority of the board of directors or governing board is comprised of individuals who are members of Socially-Disadvantaged Groups. Federally-recognized Tribes and tribal entities must demonstrate that they meet all definition requirements for one of the three eligible applicant types. You must be able to verify your legal structure in the State in which you are incorporated. Grants may not be made to public bodies or to individuals.

    (a) An applicant is ineligible if they have been debarred or suspended or otherwise excluded from or ineligible for participation in Federal assistance programs under Executive Order 12549, “Debarment and Suspension.” In addition, an applicant will be considered ineligible for a grant due to an outstanding judgment obtained by the U.S. in a Federal Court (other than U.S. Tax Court), is delinquent on the payment of Federal income taxes, or is delinquent on Federal debt.

    (b) Any corporation (i) that has been convicted of a felony criminal violation under any Federal law within the past 24 months or (ii) that has any unpaid Federal tax liability that has been assessed, for which all judicial and administrative remedies have been exhausted or have lapsed, and that is not being paid in a timely manner pursuant to an agreement with the authority responsible for collecting the tax liability, is not eligible for financial assistance provided with funds appropriated by the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2016 (Pub. L. 114-113), unless a Federal agency has considered suspension or debarment of the corporation and has made a determination that this further action is not necessary to protect the interests of the Government.

    2. Cost Sharing or Matching. No matching funds are required.

    3. Other Eligibility Requirements.

    Use of Funds: Your application must propose Technical Assistance that will benefit Socially-Disadvantaged Groups. Cooperatives that are recipients of Technical Assistance must have a membership that consists of a majority of members from Socially-Disadvantaged Groups. Please review section D (6) of this Notice, “Funding Restrictions,” carefully.

    Project Eligibility: The proposed Project must only serve members of Socially-Disadvantaged Groups in Rural Areas.

    Grant Period Eligibility: Your application must include a grant period of one-year or less or it will not be considered for funding. The proposed time frame should begin no earlier than the grant award date and end no later than December 31, 2018. However, you should note that the anticipated award date is September 29, 2017, so your proposed start date should be after September 29, 2017. Projects must be completed within the 12-months or less time frame. The Agency may approve requests to extend the grant period for up to an additional 12 months at its discretion. Further guidance on grant period extensions will be provided in the award document.

    However, you may not have more than one active SDGG during the same grant period. If you receive another SDGG during the next grant cycle, the first grant must be closed before funds can be obligated for the new grant. Applications that request funds for a time period ending after December 31, 2018, will not be considered for funding.

    Satisfactory Performance Eligibility: If you have an existing SDGG award, you must be performing satisfactorily to be considered eligible for a new SDGG award. Satisfactory performance includes being up-to-date on all financial and performance reports and being current on all tasks as approved in the work plan. The Agency will use its discretion to make this determination. In addition, if you have an existing award from the Rural Cooperative Development Grant (RCDG) program, you must discuss the status of your existing RCDG award at application time and be performing satisfactorily to be considered for a new SDGG award.

    Completeness Eligibility: Your application must provide all of the information requested in Section D (2) of this Notice. Applications lacking sufficient information to determine eligibility and scoring will be considered ineligible.

    Multiple Grant Eligibility: You may only submit one SDGG grant application each funding cycle.

    D. Application and Submission Information 1. Address To Request Application Package

    The application template for applying on paper for this funding opportunity is located at http://www.rd.usda.gov/programs-services/socially-disadvantaged-groups-grant. Use of the application template is strongly recommended to assist you with the application process. You may also contact your USDA Rural Development State Office for more information. Contact information for State Offices is located at http://www.rd.usda.gov/contact-us/state-offices. You may also obtain an application package by calling 202-690-1374.

    2. Content and Form of Application Submission

    You may submit your application in paper form or electronically through Grants.gov. Your application must contain all required information.

    To submit an application electronically, you must follow the instructions for this funding announcement at http://www.grants.gov. Please note that we cannot accept emailed or faxed applications.

    You can locate the Grants.gov downloadable application package for this program by using a keyword, the program name, or the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number for this program.

    When you enter the Grants.gov Web site, you will find information about submitting an application electronically through the site, as well as the hours of operation.

    To use Grants.gov, you must already have a DUNS number and you must also be registered and maintain registration in SAM. We strongly recommend that you do not wait until the application deadline date to begin the application process through Grants.gov.

    You must submit all of your application documents electronically through Grants.gov. Applications must include electronic signatures. Original signatures may be required if funds are awarded.

    After electronically submitting an application through Grants.gov, you will receive an automatic acknowledgement from Grants.gov that contains a Grants.gov tracking number.

    If you want to submit a paper application, send it to the State Office located in the State where you are headquartered. You can find State Office contact information at: http://www.rd.usda.gov/contact-us/state-offices.

    Your application must also contain the following required forms and proposal elements:

    (a) Form SF-424, “Application for Federal Assistance,” to include your DUNS number and SAM Commercial and Government Entity (CAGE) code and expiration date. Because there are no specific fields for a CAGE code and expiration date, you may identify them anywhere you want to on the form. If you do not include your DUNS number in your application, it will not be considered for funding.

    (b) Form SF-424A, “Budget Information-Non-Construction Programs.” This form must be completed and submitted as part of the application package.

    (c) Form SF-424B, “Assurances—Non-Construction Programs.” This form must be completed, signed, and submitted as part of the application package.

    (d) Form AD-3030, “Representations Regarding Felony Conviction and Tax Delinquent Status for Corporate Applicants,” if you are a corporation. A corporation is any entity that has filed articles of incorporation in one of the 50 States, the District of Columbia, the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of Palau, and the Republic of the Marshall Islands, or the various territories of the United States including American Samoa, Guam, Midway Islands, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, or the U.S. Virgin Islands. Corporations include both for profit and non-profit entities.

    (e) You must certify that there are no current outstanding Federal judgments against your property and that you will not use grant funds to pay for any judgment obtained by the United States. You must also certify that you are not delinquent on the payment of Federal income taxes, or any Federal debt. To satisfy the Certification requirement, you should include this statement in your application: “[INSERT NAME OF APPLICANT] certifies that the United States has not obtained an unsatisfied judgment against its property, is not delinquent on the payment of Federal income taxes, or any Federal debt, and will not use grant funds to pay any judgments obtained by the United States.” A separate signature is not required.

    (f) Table of Contents. Your application must contain a detailed Table of Contents (TOC). The TOC must include page numbers for each part of the application. Page numbers should begin immediately following the TOC.

    (g) Executive Summary. A summary of the proposal, not to exceed one page, must briefly describe the Project, tasks to be completed, and other relevant information that provides a general overview of the Project.

    (h) Eligibility Discussion. A detailed discussion, not to exceed four pages, must describe how you meet the following requirements:

    (1) Applicant Eligibility. You must describe how you meet the definition of a Cooperative, Group of Cooperatives, or Cooperative Development Center. Your application must show that your individual Cooperative, Group of Cooperatives or Cooperative Development Center serves Socially-Disadvantaged Groups and a majority of the board of directors or governing board is comprised of individuals who are members of Socially-Disadvantaged Groups. Your application must include a list of your board of directors/governing board and the percentage of board of directors/governing board that are members of Socially-Disadvantaged Groups. NOTE: Your application will not be considered for funding if you fail to show that a majority of your board of directors/governing board is comprised of individuals who are members of Socially-Disadvantaged Groups.

    If applying as a Cooperative or a Group of Cooperatives, you must verify your incorporation and status in the State that you have applied by providing the State's Certificate of Good Standing and your Articles of Incorporation. You may also submit your By-laws if they provide additional information not included in your Articles of Incorporation that will verify your status as a Cooperative or a Group of Cooperatives. If applying as a nonprofit corporation, you must provide evidence of your status as a nonprofit corporation in good standing and your Articles of Incorporation. If applying as an institution of higher education, you must qualify as an Institution of Higher Education as defined at 20 U.S.C. 1001. You must apply as only one type of applicant. The requested verification documents should be included in Appendix A of your application. If they are not included, your application will not be considered for funding.

    (2) Use of Funds. You must provide a brief discussion on how the proposed Project activities meet the definition of Technical Assistance and identify the Socially-Disadvantaged Groups that will be assisted.

    (3) Project Area. You must provide specific information that details the location of the Project area and explain how the area meets the definition of “Rural Area.”

    (4) Grant Period. You must provide a time frame for the proposed Project and discuss how the Project will be completed within that time frame. You must have a time frame of one year or less.

    (5) Satisfactory Performance. If you have an existing SDGG and/or RCDG award, you must discuss the current status of the award(s).

    (6) Indirect Costs. Your negotiated indirect cost rate approval does not need to be included in your application, but you will be required to provide it if a grant is awarded. Approval for indirect costs that are requested in an application without an approved indirect cost rate agreement is at the discretion of the Agency.

    (i) Scoring Criteria. Each of the scoring criteria in this Notice must be addressed in narrative form, with a maximum of three pages for each individual scoring criterion, unless otherwise specified. Failure to address each scoring criteria will result in the application being determined ineligible.

    (j) The Agency has established annual performance evaluation measures to evaluate the SDGG program. You must provide estimates on the following performance evaluation measures as part of your narrative:

    • Number of cooperatives assisted; and

    • Number of socially disadvantaged groups assisted.

    3. DUNS Number and SAM

    In order to be eligible (unless you are excepted under 2 CFR 25.110(b), (c) or (d), you are required to:

    (a) Provide a valid DUNS number in your application, which can be obtained at no cost via a toll-free request line at (866) 705-5711;

    (b) Register in SAM before submitting your application. You may register in SAM at no cost at https://www.sam.gov/portal/public/SAM/. You must provide your SAM Cage Code and expiration date or evidence that you have begun the SAM registration process at time of application, and

    (c) Continue to maintain an active SAM registration with current information at all times during which you have an active Federal award or an application or plan under consideration by a Federal awarding agency.

    If you have not fully complied with all applicable DUNS and SAM requirements, the Agency may determine that the applicant is not qualified to receive a Federal award and the Agency may use that determination as a basis for making an award to another applicant. Please refer to Section F. 2 for additional submission requirements that apply to grantees selected for this program.

    4. Submission Dates and Times

    Application Deadline Date: August 1, 2017.

    Explanation of Deadlines: Paper applications must be postmarked and mailed, shipped, or sent overnight by August 1, 2017. The Agency will determine whether your application is late based on the date shown on the postmark or shipping invoice. You may also hand carry your application to one of our field offices, but it must be received by close of business on the deadline date. If the due date falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or Federal holiday, the reporting package is due the next business day. Late applications are not eligible for funding and will not be evaluated further.

    Electronic applications must be RECEIVED by http://www.grants.gov by midnight Eastern Time July 25, 2017, to be eligible for funding. Please review the Grants.gov Web site at http://grants.gov/applicants/organization_registration.jsp for instructions on the process of registering your organization as soon as possible to ensure you are able to meet the electronic application deadline. Grants.gov will not accept applications submitted after the deadline.

    5. Intergovernmental Review

    Executive Order (EO) 12372, Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs, is listed as applying to this program, however since this program is comprised of the provision of technical assistance which is of a non-construction nature the intergovernmental review process is not required.

    You are also encouraged to contact Cooperative Programs at 202-690-1374 or [email protected] if you have questions about this process.

    6. Funding Restrictions

    Grant funds must be used for Technical Assistance. No funds made available under this solicitation shall be used to:

    (a) Plan, repair, rehabilitate, acquire, or construct a building or facility, including a processing facility;

    (b) Purchase, rent, or install fixed equipment, including processing equipment;

    (c) Purchase vehicles, including boats;

    (d) Pay for the preparation of the grant application;

    (e) Pay expenses not directly related to the funded Project;

    (f) Fund political or lobbying activities;

    (g) To fund any activities considered unallowable by the applicable grant cost principles, including 2 CFR part 200, subpart E and the Federal Acquisition Regulation;

    (h) Fund architectural or engineering design work for a specific physical facility;

    (i) Fund any direct expenses for the production of any commodity or product to which value will be added, including seed, rootstock, labor for harvesting the crop, and delivery of the commodity to a processing facility;

    (j) Fund research and development;

    (k) Purchase land;

    (l) Duplicate current activities or activities paid for by other Federal grant programs;

    (m) Pay costs of the Project incurred prior to the date of grant approval;

    (n) Pay for assistance to any private business enterprise that does not have at least 51 percent ownership by those who are either citizens of the United States or reside in the United States after being legally admitted for permanent residence;

    (o) Pay any judgment or debt owed to the United States;

    (p) Pay any Operating Costs of the Cooperative, Group of Cooperatives, or Cooperative Development Center not directly related to the Project;

    (q) Pay expenses for applicant employee training or professional development not directly related to the Project; or

    (r) Pay for any goods or services from a person who has a Conflict of Interest with the grantee.

    (s) Pay for Technical Assistance provided to a Cooperative that does not have a membership that consists of a majority of members from Socially-Disadvantaged Groups.

    In addition, your application will not be considered for funding if it does any of the following:

    • Requests more than the maximum grant amount;

    • Proposes ineligible costs that equal more than 10 percent of total grant funds requested; or

    • Proposes Participant Support Costs that equal more than 10 percent of total grant funds requested.

    We will consider your application for funding if it includes ineligible costs of 10 percent or less of total grant funds requested, as long as it is determined eligible otherwise. However, if your application is successful, those ineligible costs must be removed and replaced with eligible costs before the Agency will make the grant award or the amount of the grant award will be reduced accordingly. If we cannot determine the percentage of ineligible costs, your application will not be considered for funding.

    7. Other Submission Requirements

    (a) You should not submit your application in more than one format. You must choose whether to submit your application in hard copy or electronically. Applications submitted in hard copy should be mailed or hand-delivered to the State Office located in the State where you are headquartered. You can find State Office contact information at: http://www.rd.usda.gov/contact-us/state-offices. To submit an application electronically, you must follow the instructions for this funding announcement at http://www.grants.gov. A password is not required to access the Web site.

    (b) National Environmental Policy Act. This Notice has been reviewed in accordance with 7 CFR part 1970, “Environmental Policies and Procedures.” We have determined that an Environmental Impact Statement is not required because the issuance of regulations and instructions, as well as amendments to them, describing administrative and financial procedures for processing, approving, and implementing the Agency's financial programs is categorically excluded in the Agency's National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) regulation found at 7 CFR 1970.53(f). We have determined that this Notice does not constitute a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment.

    The Agency will review each grant application to determine its compliance with 7 CFR part 1970. The applicant may be asked to provide additional information or documentation to assist the Agency with this determination.

    (c) Civil Rights Compliance Requirements. All grants made under this Notice are subject to Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 as required by the USDA (7 CFR part 15, subpart A) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

    E. Application Review Information 1. Scoring Criteria

    All eligible and complete applications will be evaluated based on the following criteria. Failure to address any one of the following criteria by the application deadline will result in the application being determined ineligible and the application will not be considered for funding. Evaluators will base scores only on the information provided or cross-referenced by page number in each individual scoring criterion. SDGG is a competitive program, so you will receive scores based on the quality of your responses. Simply addressing the criteria will not guarantee higher scores. The total points possible for the criteria are 100.

    (a) Technical Assistance (maximum score of 25 points). A panel of USDA employees will evaluate your application to determine your ability to assess the needs of and provide effective Technical Assistance to Socially-Disadvantaged Groups. You must discuss the:

    (1) Needs of the Socially-Disadvantaged Groups to be assisted and explain how those needs were determined,

    (2) Proposed Technical Assistance to be provided to the Socially-Disadvantaged Groups; and

    (3) Expected outcomes of the proposed Technical Assistance, including how Socially-Disadvantaged Groups will benefit from participating in the Project. You will score higher on this criterion if you provide examples of past projects that demonstrate successful outcomes in identifying specific needs and providing Technical Assistance to Socially-Disadvantaged Groups.

    (b) Experience (maximum score of 25 points). A panel of USDA employees will evaluate your experience, commitment and availability for identified staff or consultants in providing Technical Assistance, as defined in this Notice. You must describe the Technical Assistance experience for each identified staff member or consultant, as well as years of experience in providing that assistance. You must also discuss the commitment and the availability of identified staff, consultants, or other professionals to be hired for the project—especially those who may be consulting on multiple SDGG/RCDG projects. If staff or consultants have not been selected at the time of application, you must provide specific descriptions of the qualifications required for the positions to be filled. In addition, resumes for each individual staff member or consultant must be included as an attachment in Appendix B. The attachments will not count toward the maximum page total. We will compare the described experience in this section and in the resumes to the work plan to determine relevance of the experience. Applications that do not include the attached resumes will not be considered for funding.

    Applications that demonstrate strong credentials, education, capabilities, experience and availability of Project personnel that will contribute to a high likelihood of Project success will receive more points than those that demonstrate less potential for success in these areas.

    Points will be awarded as follows:

    (i) 0 points will be awarded if you do not substantively address the criterion.

    (ii) 1-9 points will be awarded if qualifications and experience of some, but not all, staff is addressed and/or if necessary qualifications of unfilled positions are not provided.

    (iii) 10-14 points will be awarded if all project personnel are identified but do not demonstrate qualifications or experience relevant to the project.

    (iv) 15-19 will be awarded if most, but not all, key personnel demonstrate strong credentials and/or experience, and availability indicating a reasonable likelihood of success.

    (v) 20-25 points will be awarded if all personnel demonstrate strong, relevant credentials or experience, and availability indicating a high likelihood of project success.

    (c) Commitment (maximum of 10 points). A panel of USDA employees will evaluate your commitment to providing Technical Assistance to Socially-Disadvantaged Groups in Rural Areas. You must list the number and location of Socially-Disadvantaged Groups that will directly benefit from the assistance provided. You must also define and describe the underserved and economically distressed areas within your service area and provide current and relevant statistics that support your description of the service area. Projects located in persistent poverty counties as defined by USDA's Economic Research Service will score higher on this factor.

    (d) Work Plan/Budget (maximum of 25 points)—Six page limit. Your work plan must provide specific and detailed descriptions of the tasks and the key project personnel that will accomplish the project's goals. Budget will be reviewed for completeness. You must list what tasks are to be done, when it will be done, who will do it, and how much it will cost. Reviewers must be able to understand what is being proposed and how the grant funds will be spent. The budget must be a detailed breakdown of estimated costs. These costs should be allocated to each of the tasks to be undertaken. The amount of grant funds requested will be reduced if the applicant does not have justification for all costs.

    A panel of USDA employees will evaluate your work plan for detailed actions and an accompanying timetable for implementing the proposal. Clear, logical, realistic, and efficient plans that allocate costs to specific tasks using applicable budget object class categories provided on the Form SF-424A will result in a higher score. You must discuss at a minimum:

    (i) Specific tasks to be completed using grant funds;

    (ii) How customers will be identified;

    (iii) Key personnel; and

    (iv) The evaluation methods to be used to determine the success of specific tasks and overall project objectives. Please provide qualitative methods of evaluation. For example, evaluation methods should go beyond quantitative measurements of completing surveys or number of evaluations.

    (e) Local support (maximum of 10 points). A panel of USDA employees will evaluate your application for local support of the Technical Assistance activities. Your discussion on local support should include previous and/or expected local support and plans for coordinating with other developmental organizations in the proposed service area or with state and local government institutions. You will score higher if you demonstrate strong support from potential beneficiaries and other developmental organizations. You may also submit a maximum of 10 letters of support or intent to coordinate with the application to verify your discussion.

    Points will be awarded as follows:

    (i) 0 points are awarded if you do not adequately address this criterion.

    (ii) 1-5 points are awarded if you demonstrate support from potential beneficiaries and other developmental organizations in your discussion but do not provide letters of support.

    (iii) Additional 1 point is awarded if you provide 2-3 support letters that show support from potential beneficiaries and/or support from local organizations.

    (iv) Additional 2 points are awarded if you provide 4-5 support letters that show support from potential beneficiaries and/or support from local organizations.

    (v) Additional 3 points are awarded if you provide 6-7 support letters that show support from potential beneficiaries and/or support from local organizations.

    (vi) Additional 4 points are awarded if you provide 8-9 support letters that show support from potential beneficiaries and/or support from local organizations.

    (vii) Additional 5 points are awarded if you provide 10 support letters that show support from potential beneficiaries and/or support from local organizations.

    You may submit a maximum of 10 letters of support. Support letters should come from potential beneficiaries and other local organizations. Letters received from Congressional members and Technical Assistance providers will not be included in the count of support letters received. Additionally, identical form letters signed by multiple potential beneficiaries and/or local organizations will not be included in the count of support letters received. Support letters should be included as an attachment to the application in Appendix C and will not count against the maximum page total. Additional letters from industry groups, commodity groups, Congressional members, and similar organizations should be referenced, but not included in the application package. When referencing these letters, provide the name of the organization, date of the letter, the nature of the support, and the name and title of the person signing the letter.

    (f) Administrator Discretionary Points (maximum of 5 points). The Administrator of the Agency may choose to award up to 5 points to an application to improve the geographic diversity of awardees or to prioritize projects that provide assistance to unserved or underserved Rural Areas in a fiscal year.

    2. Review and Selection Process

    The State Offices will review applications to determine if they are eligible for assistance based on requirements in this Notice, and other applicable Federal regulations. If determined eligible, your application will be scored by a panel of USDA employees in accordance with the point allocation specified in this Notice. The panel will consist of USDA employees with expertise in providing Technical Assistance to Socially-Disadvantaged Groups. The review panel will convene to reach a consensus on the scores for each of the eligible applications. A recommendation will be submitted to the Administrator to fund applications in highest ranking order. The Administrator of the Agency may choose to award up to 5 Administrator priority points based on criterion (f) in section E.1. of this Notice. These points will be added to the cumulative score for a total possible score of 100. Applications that cannot be fully funded may be offered partial funding at the Agency's discretion. If your application is ranked and not funded, it will not be carried forward into the next competition.

    F. Federal Award Administration Information 1. Federal Award Notices

    If you are selected for funding, you will receive a signed notice of Federal award by postal mail, containing instructions on requirements necessary to proceed with execution and performance of the award.

    If you are not selected for funding, you will be notified in writing via postal mail and informed of any review and appeal rights. Funding of successfully appealed applications will be limited to available FY 2017 funding.

    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements

    Additional requirements that apply to grantees selected for this program can be found in 2 CFR parts 200, 215, 400, 415, 417, 418, and 421. All recipients of Federal financial assistance are required to report information about first-tier subawards and executive compensation (See 2 CFR part 170). You will be required to have the necessary processes and systems in place to comply with the Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act reporting requirements (See 2 CFR 170.200(b), unless you are exempt under 2 CFR 170.110(b)). These regulations may be obtained at http://www.gpoaccess.gov/cfr/index.html.

    The following additional requirements apply to grantees selected for this program:

    • Agency approved Grant Agreement.

    • Letter of Conditions.

    • Form RD 1940-1, “Request for Obligation of Funds.”

    • Form RD 1942-46, “Letter of Intent to Meet Conditions.”

    • Form AD-1047, “Certification Regarding Debarment, Suspension, and Other Responsibility Matters-Primary Covered Transactions.”

    • Form AD-1048, “Certification Regarding Debarment, Suspension, Ineligibility and Voluntary Exclusion-Lower Tier Covered Transactions.”

    • Form AD-1049, “Certification Regarding a Drug-Free Workplace Requirement (Grants).”

    • Form AD-3031, “Assurance Regarding Felony Conviction or Tax Delinquent Status for Corporate Applicants.” Must be signed by corporate applicants who receive an award under this Notice.

    • Form RD 400-4, “Assurance Agreement.”

    • SF LLL, “Disclosure of Lobbying Activities,” if applicable.

    3. Reporting

    After grant approval and through grant completion, you will be required to provide the following:

    a. A SF-425, “Federal Financial Report,” and a project performance report will be required on a semiannual basis (due 30 working days after end of the semiannual period). For the purposes of this grant, semiannual periods end on March 31st and September 30th. The project performance reports shall include the following: A comparison of actual accomplishments to the objectives established for that period;

    b. Reasons why established objectives were not met, if applicable;

    c. Reasons for any problems, delays, or adverse conditions, if any, which have affected or will affect attainment of overall project objectives, prevent meeting time schedules or objectives, or preclude the attainment of particular objectives during established time periods. This disclosure shall be accompanied by a statement of the action taken or planned to resolve the situation; and

    d. Objectives and timetable established for the next reporting period.

    e. Provide a final project and financial status report within 90 days after the expiration or termination of the grant.

    f. Provide outcome project performance reports and final deliverables.

    G. Agency Contacts

    For general questions about this announcement and for program Technical Assistance, please contact the appropriate State Office as indicated in the ADDRESSES section of this Notice. You may also contact National Office staff: Susan Horst, SDGG Program Lead, [email protected], or call 202-690-1374.

    H. Other Information Non Discrimination Statement

    In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity (including gender expression), sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, family/parental status, income derived from a public assistance program, political beliefs, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity, in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA (not all bases apply to all programs). Remedies and complaint filing deadlines vary by program or incident.

    Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.) should contact the responsible Agency or USDA's TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TTY) or contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.

    To file a program discrimination complaint, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, AD-3027, found online at http://www.ascr.usda.gov/complaint_filing_cust.html and at any USDA office or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by:

    (1) Mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250-9410;

    (2) Fax: (202) 690-7442; or

    (3) Email: [email protected]

    Dated: May 26, 2017. Chadwick O. Parker, Acting Administrator, Rural Business-Cooperative Service.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11739 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-XY-P
    BROADCASTING BOARD OF GOVERNORS Request for Comments on the Broadcasting Board of Governors' Implementation of a Comprehensive Plan for Reorganizing the Executive Branch AGENCY:

    Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG).

    ACTION:

    Request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    Executive Order 13781, “Comprehensive Plan for Reorganizing the Executive Branch,” signed into effect on March 13, 2017, directs the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to present the President with a plan that recommends ways to reorganize the executive branch and eliminate unnecessary agencies. As part of this process, the Broadcasting Board of Governors will be submitting a proposal for reorganization to OMB. This request for comments seeks public input on potential reforms at the BBG that would increase the efficiency, effectiveness, and accountability of the agency. These comments will also be considered in the development of the BBG's 2018-2022 Strategic Plan.

    The BBG is the federal agency charged with carrying out U.S. Government funded international media, overseeing the operations of five media networks: the Voice of America (VOA), Radio and TV Marti, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL), Radio Free Asia (RFA), and the Middle East Broadcasting Networks (MBN).

    DATES:

    Submit either electronic comments or information by June 30, 2017. We will not accept comments by fax or paper delivery.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit comments through the BBG Web site at https://www.bbg.gov/submit-your-ideas/.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Matt Ciepielowski at 202-203-4845.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Through this request for comments, the BBG is seeking initial feedback from a broad range of stakeholders on questions that will contribute to the BBG's proposal to OMB in accordance with Executive Order 13781 and the BBG's 2018-2022 Strategic Plan. This request for comments is for information-gathering and fact-finding purposes only, and should not be construed as a solicitation or as an obligation on the part of the BBG to agree with submitted comments or to make recommendations regarding specific issues identified in public comments. The BBG requests that respondents generally address the following overarching questions:

    • What are the most important or effective projects or programs that the BBG undertakes?

    • Do you think that there are any changes that BBG could make to increase the efficiency, effectiveness, and accountability of its media networks or the agency itself? If so, please describe those changes.

    • Would you propose reorganizing any parts or aspects of the BBG or its media networks to increase efficiency, effectiveness, and accountability? If so, how?

    • In today's changing media landscape, how should the BBG adapt to best serve its mission to inform, engage, and connect people around the world in support of freedom and democracy?

    Oanh Tran, Director of Board Operations, Broadcasting Board of Governors.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11832 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 86100-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [B-27-2017] Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) 43—Battle Creek, Michigan, Notification of Proposed Production Activity, Pfizer, Inc., (Pharmaceutical Products), Kalamazoo, Michigan

    Pfizer Inc. (Pfizer) submitted a notification of proposed production activity to the FTZ Board for its facility in Kalamazoo, Michigan within Subzone 43E. The notification conforming to the requirements of the regulations of the FTZ Board (15 CFR 400.22) was received on April 12, 2017.

    Pfizer already has authority to produce certain pharmaceutical products within Subzone 43E. The current request would add finished products and a foreign status material/component to the scope of authority. Pursuant to 15 CFR 400.14(b), additional FTZ authority would be limited to the specific foreign-status material/component and specific finished products described in the submitted notification (as described below) and subsequently authorized by the FTZ Board.

    Production under FTZ procedures could exempt Pfizer from customs duty payments on the foreign-status material/components used in export production. On its domestic sales, Pfizer would be able to choose the duty rate during customs entry procedures that apply to crisaborole (EucrisaTM) (duty free) in finished product and bulk form for the foreign-status material/component noted below and in the existing scope of authority. Customs duties also could possibly be deferred or reduced on foreign-status production equipment.

    The material/component sourced from abroad is crisaborole—active pharmaceutical ingredient (duty rate 6.5%).

    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 July 17, 2017.

    A copy of the notification will be available for public inspection at the Office of the Executive Secretary, Foreign-Trade Zones Board, Room 21013, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230-0002, and in the “Reading Room” section of the Board's Web site, which is accessible via www.trade.gov/ftz.

    For further information, contact Christopher Wedderburn at [email protected] or (202) 482-1963.

    Dated: June 2, 2017. Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11835 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [B-26-2017] Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) 80—San Antonio, Texas, Notification of Proposed Production Activity, DPT Laboratories, Ltd., (Pharmaceutical Products), San Antonio, Texas

    DPT Laboratories, Ltd. (DPT) submitted a notification of proposed production activity to the FTZ Board for its facilities in San Antonio, Texas. The notification conforming to the requirements of the regulations of the FTZ Board (15 CFR 400.22) was received on April 17, 2017.

    The request indicates that a separate application for subzone designation for two DPT facilities under FTZ 80 will be submitted. Any such application would be processed under Section 400.38 of the Board's regulations. The facilities will be used to produce certain pharmaceutical products. Pursuant to 15 CFR 400.14(b), FTZ activity would be limited to the specific foreign-status material/component and specific finished products described in the submitted notification (as described below) and subsequently authorized by the FTZ Board.

    Production under FTZ procedures could exempt DPT from customs duty payments on the foreign-status material/componens used in export production. On its domestic sales, DPT would be able to choose the duty rate during customs entry procedures that apply to crisaborole (EucrisaTM) (duty free) in finished product and bulk form for the foreign-status input noted below. Customs duties also could possibly be deferred or reduced on foreign-status production equipment.

    The material/component sourced from abroad is crisaborole—active pharmaceutical ingredient (duty rate 6.5%).

    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 July 17, 2017.

    A copy of the notification will be available for public inspection at the Office of the Executive Secretary, Foreign-Trade Zones Board, Room 21013, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230-0002, and in the “Reading Room” section of the Board's Web site, which is accessible via www.trade.gov/ftz.

    For further information, contact Christopher Wedderburn at [email protected] or (202) 482-1963.

    Dated: June 2, 2017. Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11833 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [B-28-2017] Foreign-Trade Zone 186—Waterville, Maine Application for Production Authority, Flemish Master Weavers, Subzone 186A, (Machine-Made Woven Area Rugs), Sanford, Maine

    An application has been submitted to the Foreign-Trade Zones (FTZ) Board by the City of Waterville, Maine, grantee of FTZ 186, requesting production authority on behalf of Flemish Master Weavers (FMW), located within Subzone 186A in Sanford, Maine. The application conforming to the requirements of the regulations of the FTZ Board (15 CFR 400.23) was docketed on April 18, 2017.

    The FMW facility (127 employees, 4.08 acres) is used for the production of machine-made woven area rugs. FMW already has restricted FTZ authority to produce area rugs using polypropylene and polyester yarns in privileged foreign status (19 CFR 146.41), which precludes inverted tariff benefits on those inputs (see 81 FR 51850, August 5, 2016).

    The pending application requests authority for FMW to use imported continuous filament polypropylene yarn in non-privileged foreign status (19 CFR 146.42). If the application were approved, on its domestic sales, FMW would be able to choose the duty rate during customs entry procedures that applies to machine-made woven area rugs (duty free) for the imported continuous filament polypropylene yarn (otherwise dutiable at 8%). Customs duties also could possibly be deferred or reduced on foreign-status production equipment. The request indicates that the savings from FTZ procedures would help improve the plant's international competitiveness.

    In accordance with the FTZ Board's regulations, Diane Finver of the FTZ Staff is designated examiner to evaluate and analyze the facts and information presented in the application and case record and to report findings and recommendations to the FTZ Board.

    Public comment is invited from interested parties. Submissions shall be addressed to the FTZ Board's Executive Secretary at the address below. The closing period for their receipt is August 7, 2017. Rebuttal comments in response to material submitted during the foregoing period may be submitted during the subsequent 15-day period to August 21, 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 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: June 2, 2017. Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11837 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [B-31-2017] Foreign-Trade Zone 19—Omaha, Nebraska, Application for Reorganization Under Alternative Site Framework

    An application has been submitted to the Foreign-Trade Zones (FTZ) Board by the Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce, grantee of FTZ 19, requesting authority to reorganize the zone under the alternative site framework (ASF) adopted by the FTZ Board (15 CFR Sec. 400.2(c)). The ASF is an option for grantees for the establishment or reorganization of zones and can permit significantly greater flexibility in the designation of new subzones or “usage-driven” FTZ sites for operators/users located within a grantee's “service area” in the context of the FTZ Board's standard 2,000-acre activation limit for a zone. The application was submitted pursuant to 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 May 15, 2017.

    FTZ 19 was approved by the FTZ Board on January 27, 1983 (Board Order 204, 48 FR 5772, February 8, 1983). The current zone includes the following sites: Site 1 (17 acres)—Cargo Zone, LLC, 6200 North 16th Street, Omaha; and, Site 2 (38 acres)—Riverfront Industrial Park, Abbott Drive and Crown Point Avenue, Omaha.

    The grantee's proposed service area under the ASF would be Burt, Cass, Dodge, Douglas, Sarpy, Saunders and Washington Counties, Nebraska, as described in the application. If approved, the grantee would be able to serve sites throughout the service area based on companies' needs for FTZ designation. The application indicates that the proposed service area is within and adjacent to the Omaha, Nebraska U.S. Customs and Border Protection port of entry.

    The applicant is requesting authority to reorganize its existing zone to include both sites as “magnet” sites. The ASF allows for the possible exemption of one magnet site from the “sunset” time limits that generally apply to sites under the ASF, and the applicant proposes that Site 1 be so exempted. No subzones/usage-driven sites are being requested at this time. The application would have no impact on FTZ 19's previously authorized subzone.

    In accordance with the FTZ Board's regulations, Christopher Kemp of the FTZ Staff is designated examiner to evaluate and analyze the facts and information presented in the application and case record and to report findings and recommendations to the FTZ Board.

    Public comment is invited from interested parties. Submissions shall be addressed to the FTZ Board's Executive Secretary at the address below. The closing period for their receipt is August 7, 2017. Rebuttal comments in response to material submitted during the foregoing period may be submitted during the subsequent 15-day period to August 21, 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 FTZ Board's Web site, which is accessible via www.trade.gov/ftz.

    For further information, contact Christopher Kemp at [email protected] or (202) 482-0862.

    Dated: June 2, 2017. Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11834 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Foreign-Trade Zones Board [B-25-2017] Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) 39—Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas, Notification of Proposed Production Activity, Valeo North America, Inc., d/b/a Valeo Compressor North America, (Motor Vehicle Air-Conditioner Compressors), Dallas, Texas

    Valeo North America, Inc. d/b/a Valeo Compressor North America (Valeo), submitted a notification of proposed production activity to the FTZ Board for its facility in Dallas, Texas, within FTZ 39-Site 1. The notification conforming to the requirements of the regulations of the FTZ Board (15 CFR 400.22) was received on April 12, 2017.

    Valeo already has authority to produce air-conditioner compressor assemblies for motor vehicles. The current request would add certain foreign-status components to the scope of authority. Pursuant to 15 CFR 400.14(b), additional FTZ authority would be limited to the specific foreign status components described in the submitted notification (as described below) and subsequently authorized by the FTZ Board.

    Production under FTZ procedures could exempt Valeo from customs duty payments on the foreign status components used in export production. On its domestic sales, Valeo would be able to choose the duty rates during customs entry procedures that apply to air-conditioner compressor assemblies and electromagnetic compressor/clutch assemblies in the company's existing scope of authority (duty rate ranges from free to 3.1%). Customs duties also could possibly be deferred or reduced on foreign-status production equipment.

    The components sourced from abroad include: Stainless steel bolts; stainless steel screws (less than and more than 6mm in diameters); and, electromagnetic shims and rings (duty rate ranges from free to 8.5%).

    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 July 17, 2017.

    A copy of the notification will be available for public inspection at the Office of the Executive Secretary, Foreign-Trade Zones Board, Room 21013, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230-0002, and in the “Reading Room” section of the Board's Web site, which is accessible via www.trade.gov/ftz.

    For further information, contact Christopher Wedderburn at [email protected] or (202) 482-1963.

    Dated: June 2, 2017. Andrew McGilvray, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11836 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-570-848] Freshwater Crawfish Tail Meat From the People's Republic of China: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review, Rescission of Review in Part, and Preliminary Intent To Rescind New Shipper Review; 2015-2016 AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce (the Department) is conducting an administrative review and a new shipper review of the antidumping duty order on freshwater crawfish tail meat from the People's Republic of China (PRC). The period of review (POR) for the administrative review and the aligned new shipper review is September 1, 2015, through August 31, 2016. The administrative review covers two mandatory respondent exporters of the subject merchandise, Hubei Nature Agriculture Industry Co., Ltd. (Hubei Nature) and Yancheng Hi-King Agriculture Developing Co., Ltd. (Yancheng Hi-King). The new shipper review covers Jingzhou Tianhe Aquatic Products, Ltd. (Jingzhou Tianhe). The Department preliminarily determines that sales of subject merchandise by Hubei Nature have been made at prices below normal value, and sales of subject merchandise by Yancheng Hi-King have not been made at prices below normal value. The Department also preliminarily determines that Jingzhou Tianhe's single sale made to the United States during the POR was not bona fide. The Department preliminarily intends to rescind the new shipper review with respect to Jingzhou Tianhe.

    DATES:

    Effective June 7, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Bryan Hansen at (202) 482-3683 (Hubei Nature), Joseph Shuler (202) 482-1293 (Yancheng Hi-King), or Dmitry Vladimirov (202) 482-0665 (Jingzhou Tianhe), AD/CVD Operations, Office I, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Scope of the Order

    The merchandise subject to the antidumping duty order is freshwater crawfish tail meat, which is currently classified in the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) under subheadings 1605.40.10.10, 1605.40.10.90, 0306.19.00.10, and 0306.29.00.00. On February 10, 2012, the Department added HTSUS classification number 0306.29.01.00 to the scope description pursuant to a request by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). While the HTSUS numbers are provided for convenience and customs purposes, the written description is dispositive. A full description of the scope of the order is contained in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum.1

    1See Memorandum, “Decision Memorandum for the Preliminary Results of the Antidumping Duty Administrative Review and New Shipper Review of Freshwater Crawfish Tail Meat from the People's Republic of China; 2015-2016,” dated concurrently with, and hereby adopted by, this notice (Preliminary Decision Memorandum).

    Rescission of Administrative Review in Part

    Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.213(d)(1), the Department will rescind an administrative review, in whole or in part, if the parties that requested a review withdraw the request within 90 days of the date of publication of the notice of initiation.

    Parties withdrew their review requests for eight of the eleven companies for which a review was requested. These withdrawals of review requests were submitted within the deadline set forth under 19 CFR 351.213(d)(1) and no other parties requested a review of these companies. Accordingly, the Department is rescinding this review, in part, with respect to China Kingdom (Beijing) Import & Export Co., Ltd., Deyan Aquatic Products and Food Co., Ltd., Hubei Qianjiang Huashan Aquatic Food and Product Co., Ltd., Hubei Yuesheng Aquatic Products Co., Ltd., Nanjing Gemsen International Co., Ltd., Shanghai Ocean Flavor International Trading Co., Ltd., Weishan Hongda Aquatic Food Co., Ltd., and Xuzhou Jinjiang Foodstuffs Co., Ltd., in accordance with 19 CFR 351.213(d)(1).2

    2 For more details, see the Preliminary Decision Memorandum.

    Bona Fides Analysis

    As discussed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum, we preliminarily find that the sale made by Jingzhou Tianhe is not bona fide. 3 We reached this conclusion based on the following totality of circumstances: The quantity and price of the U.S. sale are not reflective of the normal commercial reality; the suspect timing of the U.S. sale; the severe tardiness in the receipt of payment; and certain atypical business practices which are additional factors that are at odds with the normal business considerations of a bona fide sale.4 Because the non-bona fide sale at issue here was the only sale of subject merchandise that Jingzhou Tianhe made to the United States during the POR, we are preliminarily rescinding the new shipper review of this company.

    3See Preliminary Decision Memorandum; see also Memorandum, “New Shipper Review of Freshwater Crawfish Tail Meat from the People's Republic of China—Bona Fides Analysis of Jingzhou Tianhe Aquatic Products Co., Ltd.'s Sale,” dated concurrently with this memorandum.

    4Id.

    Separate Rate for Eligible Non-Selected Respondents

    The Department preliminarily determines that the respondent not selected for individual examination, Xiping Opeck Food Co., Ltd. (Xiping Opeck), is eligible to receive separate rate in this review.5 Consistent with our practice, we assigned to Xiping Opeck the weighted-average margin calculated for Hubei Nature as the separate rate for the preliminary results of this review.6

    5See Preliminary Decision Memorandum at 9-10 for more details.

    6Id.

    PRC-Wide Entity

    The Department's policy regarding conditional review of the PRC-wide entity applies to this administrative review.7 Under this policy, the PRC-wide entity will not be under review unless a party specifically requests, or the Department self-initiates, a review of the entity. Because no party requested a review of the PRC-wide entity in this review, the entity is not under review and the entity's rate is not subject to change (i.e., 223.01 percent).8

    7See Antidumping Proceedings: Announcement of Change in Department Practice for Respondent Selection in Antidumping Duty Proceedings and Conditional Review of the Nonmarket Economy Entity in NME Antidumping Duty Proceedings, 78 FR 65963 (November 4, 2013).

    8See Freshwater Crawfish Tail Meat from the People's Republic of China; Notice of Final Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review, 68 FR 19504 (April 21, 2003).

    Methodology

    The Department is conducting these reviews in accordance with section 751(a)(1)(B), and (a)(2)(B) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act), and 19 CFR 351.214. Export price is calculated in accordance with section 772(c) of the Act. Because the PRC is a non-market economy (NME) within the meaning of section 771(18) of the Act, normal value has been calculated in accordance with section 773(c) of the Act.

    For a full description of the methodology underlying our conclusions, see the Preliminary Decision Memorandum. The Preliminary Decision Memorandum is a public document and is made available to the public via Enforcement and Compliance's Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Centralized Electronic Service System (ACCESS). ACCESS is available to registered users at https://access.trade.gov, and to all parties in the Department's Central Records Unit, room B8024 of the main Department of Commerce building. In addition, a complete version of the Preliminary Decision Memorandum can be found at http://enforcement.trade.gov/frn/. A list of the topics discussed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum is attached as an Appendix to this notice.

    Preliminary Results of Administrative Review

    The Department determines that the following preliminary dumping margins exist for the administrative review covering the period September 1, 2015, through August 31, 2016:

    Producer/exporter Weighted-
  • average
  • margin
  • (percent)
  • Hubei Nature Agriculture Industry Co., Ltd 5.10 Xiping Opeck Food Co., Ltd 5.10 Yancheng Hi-King Agriculture Developing Co., Ltd 9 0.00
    Disclosure

    We intend to disclose calculations performed in these preliminary results to parties within five days after public announcement of the preliminary results.10

    9 This rate preliminarily applies to Yancheng Hi-King Agriculture Developing Co., Ltd. and Yancheng Seastar Seafood Co., Ltd. See the “Separates Rates” section of the Preliminary Decision Memorandum for more details.

    10See 19 CFR 351.224(b).

    Public Comment

    Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.309(c)(ii), interested parties may submit cases 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.11 Parties who submit case briefs or rebuttal briefs in this proceeding are encouraged to submit with each argument: (1) A statement of the issue; (2) a brief summary of the argument; and (3) a table of authorities.12

    11See 19 CFR 351.309(d).

    12See 19 CFR 351.309(c)(2) and (d)(2) and 19 CFR 351.303 (for general filing requirements).

    Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.310 (c) interested parties who wish to request a hearing, or participate if one is requested, must submit a written request to the Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance. All documents must be filed electronically using ACCESS which is available to registered users at http://access.trade.gov. An electronically filed document must be received successfully in its entirety by ACCESS by 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time within 30 days after the date of publication of this notice.13 Requests should contain: (1) The party's name, address, and telephone number; (2) the number of participants; and (3) a list of issues to be discussed. Issues raised in the hearing will be limited to those raised in the respective case briefs.

    13See 19 CFR 351.310(c).

    Unless the deadline is extended, the Department will issue the final results of these reviews, including the results of its analysis of issues raised by parties in their comments, within 120 days after the publication of these preliminary results, pursuant to section 751(a)(3)(A) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.213(h).

    Assessment Rates

    Upon issuing the final results, the Department will determine, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) shall assess, antidumping duties on all appropriate entries covered by these reviews.14 If a respondent's weighted-average dumping margin is above de minimis (i.e., 0.50 percent) in the final results of these reviews, the Department will calculate an importer-specific assessment rate on the basis of the ratio of the total amount of dumping calculated for each importer's examined sales and, where possible, the total entered value of sales. If the Department proceeds with a final rescission of the new shipper review with respect to Jingzhou Tianhe, its entry will be assessed at the rate entered.15

    14See 19 CFR 351.212(b)(1).

    15See 19 CFR 351.212(c)(2).

    In these preliminary results, the Department applied the assessment rate calculation method adopted in the Final Modification for Reviews, i.e., on the basis of monthly average-to-average comparisons using only the transactions associated with the importer with offsets being provided for non-dumped comparisons.16 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.17

    16See Antidumping Proceeding: Calculation of the Weighted-Average Dumping Margin and Assessment Rate in Certain Antidumping Duty Proceedings; Final Modification, 77 FR 8101 (February 14, 2012) (Final Modification for Reviews).

    17See 19 CFR 351.106(c)(2).

    For entries that were not reported in the U.S. sales databases submitted by companies individually examined during this review, the Department will instruct CBP to liquidate such entries at the PRC-wide rate. We intend to issue assessment instructions to CBP 15 days after the date of publication of the final results of these reviews.

    Cash Deposit Requirements

    The following cash deposit requirements will be effective upon publication of the final results of these reviews for shipments of the subject merchandise from the PRC entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after the publication date, as provided by section 751(a)(2)(C) of the Act: (1) For the companies listed above that have a separate rate, the cash deposit rate will be that established in the final results of these reviews (except if the rate is zero or de minimis, i.e., less than 0.5 percent, then no cash deposit will be required) (2) for previously investigated or reviewed PRC and non-PRC exporters not listed above that received a separate rate in a prior segment of this proceeding, the cash deposit rate will continue to be the existing exporter-specific rate; (3) for all PRC exporters of subject merchandise that have not been found to be entitled to a separate rate, the cash deposit rate will be that for the PRC-wide entity; and (4) for all non-PRC exporters of subject merchandise which have not received their own rate, the cash deposit rate will be the rate applicable to the PRC exporter that supplied that non-PRC exporter. These deposit requirements, when imposed, shall remain in effect until further notice.

    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 these PORs. 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.

    Notification Regarding Administrative Protective Orders

    This notice also serves as a reminder to parties subject to administrative protective order (APO) of their responsibility concerning the disposition of proprietary information disclosed under APO in accordance with 19 CFR 351.305(a)(3). Timely written notification of the return or destruction of APO materials or conversion to judicial protective order is hereby requested. Failure to comply with the regulations and the terms of an APO is a sanctionable violation. We are issuing and publishing the preliminary results of these reviews in accordance with sections 751(a)(1), 751(a)(2)(B)(iv), 751(a)(3), 777(i) of the Act, and 19 CFR 351.213, 351.214 and 351.221(b)(4).

    Dated: June 1, 2017. Ronald K. Lorentzen, Acting Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance. Appendix—List of Topics Discussed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum I. Summary II. Background III. Scope of the Order IV. Rescission of Administrative Review in Part V. Bona Fides Analysis VI. Discussion of Methodology A. Non-Market-Economy Country Status B. Surrogate Country C. Separate Rates 1. Absence of De Jure Control 2. Absence of De Facto Control 3. Separate Rate for Eligible Non-Selected Respondent D. Fair Value Comparisons 1. Determination of Comparison Method 2. Results of the Differential Pricing Analysis E. U.S. Price F. Date of Sale G. Normal Value H. Surrogate Values VII. Currency Conversion VIII. Recommendation
    [FR Doc. 2017-11824 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [C-570-968] Aluminum Extrusions From the People's Republic of China: Preliminary Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review and Rescission of Review, in Part; 2015 AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce (the Department) preliminarily determines that countervailable subsidies have been provided to producers and exporters of aluminum extrusions from the People's Republic of China (PRC). The period of review (POR) is January 1, 2015 through December 31, 2015.

    DATES:

    Effective June 7, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Tyler Weinhold or Tom Bellhouse, AD/CVD Operations, Office VI, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-1121 or (202) 482-0257, respectively.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    The Department published the notice of initiation of this administrative review on July 7, 2016.1 On January 13, 2017, the Department initiated an administrative review of one additional company that had been inadvertently omitted from the Initiation Notice. 2 Because the petitioner withdrew its request for review of certain companies, only 18 companies remain under review.3 On January 17, 2017, the Department selected tenKsolar (Shanghai) Aluminum Co., Ltd. (tenKsolar) and Changzhou Jinxi Machinery Co., Ltd. (Changzhou Jinxi) for individual examination.4

    1See Initiation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Administrative Reviews, 81 FR 44260 (July 7, 2016) (Initiation Notice).

    2See Initiation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Administrative Reviews, 82 FR 4294 & n.10, dated January 13, 2017 (Corrected Initiation Notice).

    3 The following companies are under review: (1) Changzhou Jinxi, (2) tenKsolar, (3) Classic & Contemporary Inc., (4) Daya Hardware Co., LTD, (5) Dongguan Golden Tiger Hardware Industrial Co., Ltd., (6) ETLA Technology (Wuxi) Co., Ltd., (7) Global Hi-Tek Precision Limited, (8) Jiangsu Zhenhexiang New Material Technology Co., Ltd., (9) Johnson Precision Engineering (Suzhou) Co Ltd, (10) Kam Kiu Aluminium Products Sdn. Bhd., (11) Ningbo Haina Machine Co., Ltd., (12) Ningbo Innopower Tengda Machinery Co., Ltd., (13) Ningbo Yinzhou Sanhua Electric Machine Factory, (14) Precision Metal Works LTD., (15) Summit Heat Sinks Metal Co., Ltd., (16) Suzhou New Hongji Precision Part Co. Ltd., (17) Taishan City Kam Kiu Aluminium Extrusion Co., Ltd., and (18) Wuxi Huida Aluminum Co., Ltd.

    4See Memorandum, “2015 Administrative Review of the Countervailing Duty Order on Aluminum Extrusions from the People's Republic of China,” dated January 17, 2017 (Respondent Selection Memorandum).

    For a complete description of the events that followed the initiation of this review, see the Preliminary Decision Memorandum.5 A list of topics discussed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum is included as Appendix I 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 http://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 at http://enforcement.trade.gov/frn/. The signed and electronic versions of the Preliminary Decision Memorandum are identical in content.

    5See Memorandum, “Decision Memorandum for the Preliminary Results of the Countervailing Duty Administrative Review of Aluminum Extrusions from the People's Republic of China and Rescission of Review, in Part; 2015,” dated concurrently with, and hereby adopted by, this notice (Preliminary Decision Memorandum).

    Scope of the Order

    The merchandise covered by the Order is aluminum extrusions which are shapes and forms, produced by an extrusion process, made from aluminum alloys having metallic elements corresponding to the alloy series designations published by The Aluminum Association commencing with the numbers 1, 3, and 6 (or proprietary equivalents or other certifying body equivalents).6

    6See Preliminary Decision Memorandum for a complete description of the scope of the Order.

    Imports of the subject merchandise are provided for under the following categories of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS): 6603.90.8100, 7616.99.51, 8479.89.94, 8481.90.9060, 8481.90.9085, 9031.90.9195, 8424.90.9080, 9405.99.4020, 9031.90.90.95, 7616.10.90.90, 7609.00.00, 7610.10.00, 7610.90.00, 7615.10.30, 7615.10.71, 7615.10.91, 7615.19.10, 7615.19.30, 7615.19.50, 7615.19.70, 7615.19.90, 7615.20.00, 7616.99.10, 7616.99.50, 8479.89.98, 8479.90.94, 8513.90.20, 9403.10.00, 9403.20.00, 7604.21.00.00, 7604.29.10.00, 7604.29.30.10, 7604.29.30.50, 7604.29.50.30, 7604.29.50.60, 7608.20.00.30, 7608.20.00.90, 8302.10.30.00, 8302.10.60.30, 8302.10.60.60, 8302.10.60.90, 8302.20.00.00, 8302.30.30.10, 8302.30.30.60, 8302.41.30.00, 8302.41.60.15, 8302.41.60.45, 8302.41.60.50, 8302.41.60.80, 8302.42.30.10, 8302.42.30.15, 8302.42.30.65, 8302.49.60.35, 8302.49.60.45, 8302.49.60.55, 8302.49.60.85, 8302.50.00.00, 8302.60.90.00, 8305.10.00.50, 8306.30.00.00, 8414.59.60.90, 8415.90.80.45, 8418.99.80.05, 8418.99.80.50, 8418.99.80.60, 8419.90.10.00, 8422.90.06.40, 8473.30.20.00, 8473.30.51.00, 8479.90.85.00, 8486.90.00.00, 8487.90.00.80, 8503.00.95.20, 8508.70.00.00, 8515.90.20.00, 8516.90.50.00, 8516.90.80.50, 8517.70.00.00, 8529.90.73.00, 8529.90.97.60, 8536.90.80.85, 8538.10.00.00, 8543.90.88.80, 8708.29.50.60, 8708.80.65.90, 8803.30.00.60, 9013.90.50.00, 9013.90.90.00, 9401.90.50.81, 9403.90.10.40, 9403.90.10.50, 9403.90.10.85, 9403.90.25.40, 9403.90.25.80, 9403.90.40.05, 9403.90.40.10, 9403.90.40.60, 9403.90.50.05, 9403.90.50.10, 9403.90.50.80, 9403.90.60.05, 9403.90.60.10, 9403.90.60.80, 9403.90.70.05, 9403.90.70.10, 9403.90.70.80, 9403.90.80.10, 9403.90.80.15, 9403.90.80.20, 9403.90.80.41, 9403.90.80.51, 9403.90.80.61, 9506.11.40.80, 9506.51.40.00, 9506.51.60.00, 9506.59.40.40, 9506.70.20.90, 9506.91.00.10, 9506.91.00.20, 9506.91.00.30, 9506.99.05.10, 9506.99.05.20, 9506.99.05.30, 9506.99.15.00, 9506.99.20.00, 9506.99.25.80, 9506.99.28.00, 9506.99.55.00, 9506.99.60.80, 9507.30.20.00, 9507.30.40.00, 9507.30.60.00, 9507.90.60.00, and 9603.90.80.50.

    The subject merchandise entered as parts of other aluminum products may be classifiable under the following additional Chapter 76 subheadings: 7610.10, 7610.90, 7615.19, 7615.20, and 7616.99, as well as under other HTSUS chapters. In addition, fin evaporator coils may be classifiable under HTSUS numbers: 8418.99.80.50 and 8418.99.80.60. While HTSUS subheadings are provided for convenience and customs purposes, the written description of the scope of this Order is dispositive.

    Methodology

    The Department is conducting this review in accordance with section 751(a)(1)(A) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act). For each of the subsidy programs found countervailable, the Department preliminarily determines that there is a subsidy, e.g., a financial contribution by an “authority” that confers a benefit, and that the subsidy is specific.7

    7See sections 771(5)(B) and (D) of the Act regarding financial contribution; section 771(5)(E) of the Act regarding benefit; and section 771(5A) of the Act regarding specificity.

    For a full description of the methodology underlying our preliminary conclusions, including our reliance, on adverse facts available pursuant to sections 776(a) and (b) of the Act, see the Preliminary Decision Memorandum. As explained in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum, the Department relied on adverse facts available because the Government of China (GOC) and both of the mandatory respondents did not act to the best of their ability in responding to the Department's requests for information, and consequently, has drawn an adverse inference, where appropriate, in selecting from among the facts otherwise available.8 For further information, see “Use of Facts Otherwise Available and Adverse Inferences” in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum.

    8See sections 776(a) and (b) of the Act.

    Rescission of Review, in Part

    For those companies named in the Initiation Notice for which all review requests have been timely withdrawn, we are rescinding this administrative review in accordance with 19 CFR 351.213(d)(1). These companies are listed at Appendix II to this notice. For these companies, countervailing duties shall be assessed at rates equal to the rates of the cash deposits for estimated countervailing duties required at the time of entry, or withdrawal from warehouse, for consumption, during the POR, in accordance with 19 CFR 351.212(c)(2).

    Also, between July 25, 2016 and August 8, 2016 the Department timely received no-shipment certifications from eight companies.9 However, these companies were also included in the Petitioner's timely withdrawal of its review requests, and because no party other than the petitioner requested a review of these companies, the Department is rescinding the administrative review of these companies pursuant to 19 CFR 351.213(d)(1).10

    9See Preliminary Decision Memorandum at “Partial Rescission of Review.”

    10Id.

    Preliminary Rate for the Non-Selected Companies Under Review

    The statute and the Department's regulations do not directly address the establishment of rates to be applied to companies not selected for individual examination where the Department limits its examination in an administrative review pursuant to section 777A(e)(2) of the Act. However, the Department normally determines the rates for cooperative non-selected companies in reviews in a manner that is consistent with sections 703(d) and 705(c)(5)(A) of the Act, which provide that the Department shall determine an estimated all-others rate for companies not individually examined. This rate shall be an amount equal to the weighted average of the estimated subsidy rates established for those companies individually examined, excluding any zero and de minimis rates and any rates based entirely on facts available under section 776 of the Act. However, if the countervailable subsidy rates established for all exporters and producers individually investigated are zero or de minimis, or are determined entirely based on facts available under section 776 of the Act, the Department may use any reasonable method to establish the all-others rate. In past reviews, the Department has determined that a reasonable method to use when all the rates of selected mandatory respondents are zero, de minimis or determined entirely on facts available, is to assign non-selected respondents the average of the most recently determined rates that are not zero, de minimis, or based entirely on facts available.11 Because all individually calculated rates in this review are based entirely on facts available, we have preliminarily based the rate for cooperative non-selected companies on the rate established for cooperative non-selected companies in Aluminum Extrusions 2014 Review, 12 which is the average of the most recently determined rates established for cooperative individually examined respondents in any segment of this proceeding that are not zero, de minimis, or based entirely on facts available.13

    11See, e.g., Circular Welded Carbon Steel Pipes and Tubes from Turkey: Final Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review; Calendar Year 2012 and Rescission of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review, in Part,” 79 FR 51140, 51141 (August 27, 2014) (Circular Welded Pipe From Turkey); and Certain Frozen Warmwater Shrimp from the Socialist Republic of Vietnam: Final Results and Final Partial Rescission of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review, 74 FR 47191, 47194-95 (September 15, 2009) (Shrimp from Vietnam).

    12See Aluminum Extrusions from the People's Republic of China: Final Results and Partial Rescission of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review; 2014, 81 FR 92778 (Aluminum Extrusions 2014 Review).

    13See Preliminary Decision Memorandum at “Ad Valorem Rate for Cooperative Non-Selected Companies Under Review.”

    Preliminary Determination

    The Department preliminarily determines that the following estimated countervailable subsidy rates exist:

    Company Ad Valorem
  • rate
  • (percent)
  • tenKsolar (Shanghai) Co., Ltd 198.61 Changzhou Jinxi Machinery Co., Ltd 198.61 Classic & Contemporary Inc 16.08 Daya Hardware Co., LTD 16.08 Dongguan Golden Tiger Hardware Industrial Co., Ltd 16.08 ETLA Technology (Wuxi) Co., Ltd 16.08 Global Hi-Tek Precision Limited 16.08 Jiangsu Zhenhexiang New Material Technology Co., Ltd 16.08 Johnson Precision Engineering (Suzhou) Co Ltd 16.08 Kam Kiu Aluminum Products Sdn Bhd 16.08 Ningbo Haina Machine Co., Ltd 16.08 Ningbo Innopower Tengda Machinery Co., Ltd 16.08 Ningbo Yinzhou Sanhua Electric Machine Factory 16.08 Precision Metal Works LTD 16.08 Summit Heat Sinks Metal Co., Ltd 16.08 Suzhou New Hongji Precision Parts Co Ltd 16.08 Taishan City Kam Kiu Aluminium Extrusion Co., Ltd 16.08 Wuxi Huida Aluminum Co., Ltd 16.08
    Assessment Rates Cash Deposit Requirements

    In accordance with 19 CFR 351.221(b)(4)(i), we preliminarily assigned subsidy rates in the amounts shown above for the producer/exporters shown above. Upon completion of the administrative review, the Department shall determine, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) shall assess, countervailing duties on all appropriate entries covered by this review. We intend to issue assessment instructions to CBP 15 days after publication of the final results of this review.

    Pursuant to section 751(a)(2)(C) of the Act, the Department also intends to instruct CBP to collect cash deposits of estimated countervailing duties in the amounts indicated above for each company listed on shipments of subject merchandise entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after the date of publication of the final results of this administrative review. For all non-reviewed firms, we will instruct CBP to collect cash deposits of estimated countervailing duties at the most recent company-specific or all-others rate applicable to the company, as appropriate. These cash deposit requirements, when imposed, shall remain in effect until further notice.

    Disclosure

    The Department intends to disclose its calculations and analysis performed to interested parties in this preliminary determination within ten days of its public announcement, or if there is no public announcement, within five days of the date of this notice in accordance with 19 CFR 351.224(b).

    Public Comment

    Interested parties may submit written comments (case briefs) no later than 30 days after the date of publication of the preliminary determination. Rebuttal comments (rebuttal briefs), limited to issues raised in case briefs, may be submitted no later than five days after the deadline date for case briefs.14 Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.309(c)(2) and (d)(2), parties who submit case briefs or rebuttal briefs in this investigation are encouraged to submit with each argument: (1) A statement of the issue; (2) a brief summary of the argument; and (3) a table of authorities.15

    14See 19 CFR 351.309; see also 19 CFR 351.303 (for general filing requirements).

    15See 19 CFR 351.309(c)(2) and (d)(2).

    Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.310(c), interested parties who wish to request a hearing, limited to issues raised in the case and rebuttal briefs, must submit a written request to the Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance, U.S. Department of Commerce, within 30 days after the date of publication of this notice. Requests should contain the party's name, address, and telephone number, the number of participants, whether any participant is a foreign national, and a list of the issues to be discussed. If a request for a hearing is made, the Department intends to hold the hearing at the U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230, at a time and date to be determined. Parties should confirm by telephone the date, time, and location of the hearing two days before the scheduled date. Issues addressed at the hearing will be limited to those raised in the briefs.16 All briefs and hearing requests must be filed electronically and received successfully in their entirety through ACCESS by 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time on the due date.

    16See 19 CFR 351.310(c).

    Unless the deadline is extended pursuant to section 751(a)(3)(A) of the Act, we intend to issue the final results of this administrative review, including the results of our analysis of the issues raised by the parties in their comments, within 120 days after issuance of these preliminary results.

    Notification to Interested Parties

    These preliminary results are issued and published pursuant to sections 751(a)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.221(b)(4).

    Dated: May 31, 2017. Ronald K. Lorentzen, Acting Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance. Appendix I—List of Topics Discussed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum I. Summary II. Background III. Partial Rescission of Review IV. Extension of the Preliminary Results V. Scope of the Order VI. Use of Adverse Facts Available VII. Ad Valorem Rate for Non-Cooperative Companies Under Review VIII. Ad Valorem Rate for Cooperative Non-Selected Companies Under Review IX. Conclusion Appendix II—List of Companies for Which We Are Rescinding This Administrative Review 17

    17 According to information on the record of this review, certain companies listed below made no shipments to the United States during the instant review period. Each such company is identified as a “no shipments company.”

    1. Acro Import and Export Co. 2. Activa International Inc. 3. Allied Maker Limited 4. Alnan Aluminum Co., Ltd. 5. Aluminicaste Fundicion de Mexico 6. AMC Ltd. 7. Atlas Integrated Manufacturing Ltd. 8. Belton (Asia) Development Ltd. 9. Birchwoods (Lin'an) Leisure Products Co., Ltd. 10. Bolnar Hong Kong Ltd. 11. Bracalente Metal Products (Suzhou) Co., Ltd. 12. Changshu Changshen Aluminum Products Co., Ltd. 13. Changzhou Changzhen Evaporator Co., Ltd. 14. Changzhou Tenglong Auto Parts Co., Ltd. 15. China Square 16. China Square Industrial Co. 17. China Zhongwang Holdings, Ltd. 18. Chiping One Stop Industrial & Trade Co., Ltd. 19. Clear Sky Inc. 20. Cosco (J.M.) Aluminum Co., Ltd. 21. Dalian Huacheng Aquatic Products 22. Dalian Liwang Trade Co., Ltd. 23. Danfoss Micro Channel Heat Exchanger (Jia Xing) Co., Ltd. 24. Dongguan Dazhan Metal Co., Ltd. 25. Dongguang Aoda Aluminum Co., Ltd. 26. Dragonluxe Limited 27. Dynabright International Group (HK) Ltd. 28. Dynamic Technologies China 29. Ever Extend Ent. Ltd. 30. Fenghua Metal Product Factory 31. First Union Property Limited 32. FookShing Metal & Plastic Co. Ltd. 33. Foreign Trade Co. of Suzhou New & High-Tech Industrial Development Zone 34. Foshan City Nanhai Hongjia Aluminum Alloy Co., Ltd. 35. Foshan Golden Source Aluminum Products Co., Ltd. 36. Foshan Guangcheng Aluminium Co., Ltd 37. Foshan Jinlan Aluminum Co. Ltd. 38. Foshan JMA Aluminum Company Limited 39. Foshan Shanshui Fenglu Aluminum Co., Ltd. 40. Foshan Shunde Aoneng Electrical Appliances Co., Ltd 41. Foshan Yong Li Jian Aluminum Co., Ltd. 42. Fujian Sanchuan Aluminum Co., Ltd. 43. Fuzhou Sunmodo New Energy Equipment 44. Genimex Shanghai, Ltd. 45. Global PMX Dongguan Co., Ltd. 46. Global Point Technology (Far East) Limited 47. Gold Mountain International Development, Ltd. 48. Golden Dragon Precise Copper Tube Group, Inc. 49. Gran Cabrio Capital Pte. Ltd. 50. Gree Electric Appliances 51. GT88 Capital Pte. Ltd. 52. Guang Ya Aluminium Industries (HK) Ltd. 53. Guang Ya Aluminium Industries Co., Ltd. 54. Guangdong Hao Mei Aluminium Co., Ltd. 55. Guangdong Jianmei Aluminum Profile Company Limited 56. Guangdong JMA Aluminum Profile Factory (Group) Co., Ltd. 57. Guangdong Nanhai Foodstuffs Imp. & Exp. Co., Ltd. 58. Guangdong Weiye Aluminum Factory Co., Ltd. 59. Guangdong Whirlpool Electrical Appliances Co., Ltd. 60. Guangdong Xin Wei Aluminum Products Co., Ltd. 61. Guangdong Xingfa Aluminum Co., Ltd. 62. Guangdong Yonglijian Aluminum Co., Ltd. 63. Guangdong Zhongya Aluminum Company Limited 64. Guangzhou Jangho Curtain Wall System Engineering Co., Ltd. 65. Guangzhou Mingcan Die-Casting Hardware Products Co., Ltd. 66. Hangzhou Xingyi Metal Products Co., Ltd. 67. Hanwood Enterprises Limited 68. Hanyung Alcoba Co., Ltd. 69. Hanyung Alcobis Co., Ltd. 70. Hanyung Metal (Suzhou) Co., Ltd. 71. Hao Mei Aluminum Co., Ltd. 72. Hao Mei Aluminum International Co., Ltd. 73. Hebei Xusen Wire Mesh Products Co., Ltd. 74. Henan New Kelong Electrical Appliances Co., Ltd. 75. Hong Kong Gree Electric Appliances Sales Limited 76. Hong Kong Modern Non-Ferrous Metal 77. Honsense Development Company 78. Hui Mei Gao Aluminum Foshan Co., Ltd. 79. IDEX Dinglee Technology (Tianjin) Co., Ltd. 80. IDEX Health 81. IDEX Technology Suzhou Co., Ltd. 82. Innovative Aluminum (Hong Kong) Limited 83. iSource Asia 84. Jackson Travel Products Co., Ltd. 85. Jangho Curtain Wall Hong Kong Ltd. 86. Jiangmen Jianghai District Foreign Economic Enterprise Corp. Ltd. 87. Jiangmen Jianghai Foreign Ent. Gen. 88. Jiangmen Qunxing Hardware Diecasting Co., Ltd. 89. Jiangsu Changfa Refrigeration Co. 90. Jiangyin Suncitygaylin 91. Jiangyin Trust International Inc. 92. Jiangyin Xinhong Doors and Windows Co., Ltd. 93. Jiaxing Jackson Travel Products Co., Ltd. 94. Jiaxing Taixin Metal Products Co., Ltd. 95. Jiuyan Co., Ltd. 96. JMA (HK) Company Limited 97. Justhere Co., Ltd. 98. Kanal Precision Aluminum Product Co., Ltd 99. Karlton Aluminum Company Ltd. 100. Kong Ah International Company Limited 101. Kromet International Inc. 102. Kunshan Giant Light Metal Technology Co., Ltd. 103. Liaoning Zhongwang Group Co., Ltd. 104. Liaoyang Zhongwang Aluminum Profile Co. Ltd. 105. Longkou Donghai Trade Co., Ltd. 106. Metaltek Group Co., Ltd. 107. Metaltek Metal Industry Co., Ltd. 108. Midea Air Conditioning Equipment Co., Ltd. 109. Midea International Trading Co., Ltd. 110. Midea International Training Co., Ltd. 111. Miland Luck Limited 112. Nanhai Textiles Import & Export Co., Ltd. 113. New Asia Aluminum & Stainless Steel Product Co., Ltd. 114. New Zhongya Aluminum Factory 115. Nidec Sankyo (Zhejang) Corporation 116. Nidec Sankyo Singapore Pte. Ltd. 117. Ningbo Coaster International Co., Ltd. 118. Ningbo Hi Tech Reliable Manufacturing Company 119. Ningbo Ivy Daily Commodity Co., Ltd. 120. Ningbo Yili Import and Export Co., Ltd. 121. North China Aluminum Co., Ltd. 122. North Fenghua Aluminum Ltd. 123. Northern States Metals 124. PanAsia Aluminum (China) Limited 125. Pengcheng Aluminum Enterprise Inc. 126. Permasteelisa Hong Kong Ltd. 127. Permasteelisa South China Factory 128. Pingguo Aluminum Company Limited 129. Pingguo Asia Aluminum Co., Ltd. 130. Popular Plastics Company Ltd. 131. Press Metal International Ltd. 132. Samuel, Son & Co., Ltd. 133. Sanchuan Aluminum Co., Ltd. 134. Shangdong Huasheng Pesticide Machinery Co. 135. Shangdong Nanshan Aluminum Co., Ltd. 136. Shanghai Automobile Air Conditioner Accessories Ltd. 137. Shanghai Canghai Aluminum Tube Packaging Co., Ltd 138. Shanghai Dongsheng Metal 139. Shanghai Shen Hang Imp & Exp Co., Ltd. 140. Shanghai Tongtai Precise Aluminum Alloy Manufacturing Co., Ltd. 141. Shenyang Yuanda Aluminum Industry Engineering Co. Ltd. 142. Shenzhen Hudson Technology Development Co. 143. Shenzhen Jiuyuan Co., Ltd. 144. Sihui Shi Guo Yao Aluminum Co., Ltd. 145. Sincere Profit Limited 146. Skyline Exhibit Systems (Shanghai) Co. Ltd. 147. Southwest Aluminum (Group) Co., Ltd. 148. Suzhou JRP Import & Export Co., Ltd. 149. Suzhou New Hongji Precision Part Co. 150. Tai-Ao Aluminum (Taishan) Co. Ltd. 151. Taizhou Lifeng Manufacturing Co., Ltd. 152. Taizhou Lifeng Manufacturing Corporation, Ltd. 153. Taizhou United Imp. & Exp. Co., Ltd. 154. Tianjin Ganglv Nonferrous Metal Materials Co., Ltd. 155. Tianjin Jinmao Import & Export Corp., Ltd. 156. Tianjin Ruxin Electric Heat Transmission Technology Co., Ltd. 157. Tianjin Xiandai Plastic & Aluminum Products Co., Ltd. 158. Tiazhou Lifeng Manufacturing Corporation 159. Top-Wok Metal Co., Ltd. 160. Traffic Brick Network, LLC 161. Union Aluminum (SIP) Co. 162. Union Industry (Asia) Co., Ltd. 163. USA Worldwide Door Components (Pinghu) Co., Ltd. 164. Wenzhou Shengbo Decoration & Hardware 165. Whirlpool (Guangdong) 166. Whirlpool Canada L.P. 167. Whirlpool Microwave Products Development Ltd. 168. WTI Building Products, Ltd. 169. Xin Wei Aluminum Co. 170. Xin Wei Aluminum Company Limited 171. Xinya Aluminum & Stainless Steel Product Co., Ltd. 172. Yuyao Fanshun Import & Export Co., Ltd. 173. Yuyao Haoshen Import & Export 174. Zahoqing China Square Industry Limited 175. Zhaoqing Asia Aluminum Factory Company Ltd. 176. Zhaoqing China Square Industrial Ltd. 177. Zhaoqing China Square Industry Limited 178. Zhaoqing New Zhongya Aluminum Co., Ltd. 179. Zhejiang Anji Xinxiang Aluminum Co., Ltd. 180. Zhejiang Yongkang Listar Aluminum Industry Co., Ltd. 181. Zhejiang Zhengte Group Co., Ltd. 182. Zhenjiang Xinlong Group Co., Ltd. 183. Zhongshan Daya Hardware Co., Ltd. 184. Zhongshan Gold Mountain Aluminum Factory Ltd. 185. Zhongya Shaped Aluminum (HK) Holding Limited 186. Zhuhai Runxingtai Electrical Equipment Co., Ltd.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11823 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Order, Finding, or Suspended Investigation; Opportunity To Request Administrative Review AGENCY:

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

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Brenda E. Waters, Office of AD/CVD Operations, Customs Liaison Unit, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230, telephone: (202) 482-4735.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Background

    Each year during the anniversary month of the publication of an antidumping or countervailing duty order, finding, or suspended investigation, an interested party, as defined in section 771(9) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act), may request, in accordance with 19 CFR 351.213, that the Department of Commerce (the Department) conduct an administrative review of that antidumping or countervailing duty order, finding, or suspended investigation.

    All deadlines for the submission of comments or actions by the Department discussed below refer to the number of calendar days from the applicable starting date.

    Respondent Selection

    In the event the Department limits the number of respondents for individual examination for administrative reviews initiated pursuant to requests made for the orders identified below, the Department intends to select respondents based on U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) data for U.S. imports during the period of review. We intend to release the CBP data under Administrative Protective Order (APO) to all parties having an APO within five days of publication of the initiation notice and to make our decision regarding respondent selection within 21 days of publication of the initiation Federal Register notice. Therefore, we encourage all parties interested in commenting on respondent selection to submit their APO applications on the date of publication of the initiation notice, or as soon thereafter as possible. The Department invites comments regarding the CBP data and respondent selection within five days of placement of the CBP data on the record of the review.

    In the event the Department decides it is necessary to limit individual examination of respondents and conduct respondent selection under section 777A(c)(2) of the Act:

    In general, the Department finds that determinations concerning whether particular companies should be “collapsed” (i.e., treated as a single entity for purposes of calculating antidumping duty rates) require a substantial amount of detailed information and analysis, which often require follow-up questions and analysis. Accordingly, the Department will not conduct collapsing analyses at the respondent selection phase of a review and will not collapse companies at the respondent selection phase unless there has been a determination to collapse certain companies in a previous segment of this antidumping proceeding (i.e., investigation, administrative review, new shipper review or changed circumstances review). For any company subject to a review, if the Department determined, or continued to treat, that company as collapsed with others, the Department will assume that such companies continue to operate in the same manner and will collapse them for respondent selection purposes. Otherwise, the Department will not collapse companies for purposes of respondent selection. Parties are requested to (a) identify which companies subject to review previously were collapsed, and (b) provide a citation to the proceeding in which they were collapsed. Further, if companies are requested to complete a Quantity and Value Questionnaire for purposes of respondent selection, in general each company must report volume and value data separately for itself. Parties should not include data for any other party, even if they believe they should be treated as a single entity with that other party. If a company was collapsed with another company or companies in the most recently completed segment of a proceeding where the Department considered collapsing that entity, complete quantity and value data for that collapsed entity must be submitted.

    Deadline for Withdrawal of Request for Administrative Review

    Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.213(d)(1), a party that requests a review may withdraw that request within 90 days of the date of publication of the notice of initiation of the requested review. The regulation provides that the Department may extend this time if it is reasonable to do so. In order to provide parties additional certainty with respect to when the Department will exercise its discretion to extend this 90-day deadline, interested parties are advised that, with regard to reviews requested on the basis of anniversary months on or after June 2017, the Department does not intend to extend the 90-day deadline unless the requestor demonstrates that an extraordinary circumstance prevented it from submitting a timely withdrawal request. Determinations by the Department to extend the 90-day deadline will be made on a case-by-case basis.

    The Department is providing this notice on its Web site, as well as in its “Opportunity to Request Administrative Review” notices, so that interested parties will be aware of the manner in which the Department intends to exercise its discretion in the future.

    Opportunity To Request a Review: Not later than the last day of June 2017,1 interested parties may request administrative review of the following orders, findings, or suspended investigations, with anniversary dates in June for the following periods:

    1 Or the next business day, if the deadline falls on a weekend, federal holiday or any other day when the Department is closed.

    Period of review Antidumping Duty Proceedings JAPAN: Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line, and Pressure Pipe A-588-850 (Over 41/2 Inches) 6/1/16-5/31/17 JAPAN: Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line and Pressure Pipe A-588-851 (Under 41/2 Inches) 6/1/16-5/31/17 MEXICO: Prestressed Concrete Steel Rail Tie Wire A-201-843 6/1/16-5/31/17 SPAIN: Chlorinated Isocyanurates A-469-814 6/1/16-5/31/17 TAIWAN: Helical Spring Lock Washers A-583-820 6/1/16-5/31/17 THE PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA: Artist Canvas A-570-899 6/1/16-5/31/17 THE PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA: Chlorinated Isocyanurates A-570-898 6/1/16-5/31/17 THE PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA: Furfuryl Alcohol A-570-835 6/1/16-5/31/17 THE PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA: High Pressure Steel Cylinders A-570-977 6/1/16-5/31/17 THE PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA: Polyester Staple Fiber A-570-905 6/1/16-5/31/17 THE PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA: Prestressed Concrete Steel Rail Tie Wire A-570-990 6/1/16-5/31/17 THE PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA: Prestressed Concrete Steel Wire Strand A-570-945 6/1/16-5/31/17 THE PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA: Silicon Metal A-570-806 6/1/15-5/31/17 THE PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA: Tapered Roller Bearings A-570-601 6/1/15-5/31/17 Countervailing Duty Proceedings THE PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA: High Pressure Steel Cylinders C-570-978 1/1/16-12/31/16 Suspension Agreements None.

    In accordance with 19 CFR 351.213(b), an interested party as defined by section 771(9) of the Act may request in writing that the Secretary conduct an administrative review. For both antidumping and countervailing duty reviews, the interested party must specify the individual producers or exporters covered by an antidumping finding or an antidumping or countervailing duty order or suspension agreement for which it is requesting a review. In addition, a domestic interested party or an interested party described in section 771(9)(B) of the Act must state why it desires the Secretary to review those particular producers or exporters. If the interested party intends for the Secretary to review sales of merchandise by an exporter (or a producer if that producer also exports merchandise from other suppliers) which was produced in more than one country of origin and each country of origin is subject to a separate order, then the interested party must state specifically, on an order-by-order basis, which exporter(s) the request is intended to cover.

    Note that, for any party the Department was unable to locate in prior segments, the Department will not accept a request for an administrative review of that party absent new information as to the party's location. Moreover, if the interested party who files a request for review is unable to locate the producer or exporter for which it requested the review, the interested party must provide an explanation of the attempts it made to locate the producer or exporter at the same time it files its request for review, in order for the Secretary to determine if the interested party's attempts were reasonable, pursuant to 19 CFR 351.303(f)(3)(ii).

    As explained in Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Proceedings: Assessment of Antidumping Duties, 68 FR 23954 (May 6, 2003), and Non-Market Economy Antidumping Proceedings: Assessment of Antidumping Duties, 76 FR 65694 (October 24, 2011), the Department clarified its practice with respect to the collection of final antidumping duties on imports of merchandise where intermediate firms are involved. The public should be aware of this clarification in determining whether to request an administrative review of merchandise subject to antidumping findings and orders.2

    2See also the Enforcement and Compliance Web site at http://trade.gov/enforcement/.

    The Department no longer considers the non-market economy (NME) entity as an exporter conditionally subject to an antidumping duty administrative reviews.3 Accordingly, the NME entity will not be under review unless the Department specifically receives a request for, or self-initiates, a review of the NME entity.4 In administrative reviews of antidumping duty orders on merchandise from NME countries where a review of the NME entity has not been initiated, but where an individual exporter for which a review was initiated does not qualify for a separate rate, the Department will issue a final decision indicating that the company in question is part of the NME entity. However, in that situation, because no review of the NME entity was conducted, the NME entity's entries were not subject to the review and the rate for the NME entity is not subject to change as a result of that review (although the rate for the individual exporter may change as a function of the finding that the exporter is part of the NME entity). Following initiation of an antidumping administrative review when there is no review requested of the NME entity, the Department will instruct CBP to liquidate entries for all exporters not named in the initiation notice, including those that were suspended at the NME entity rate.

    3See Antidumping Proceedings: Announcement of Change in Department Practice for Respondent Selection in Antidumping Duty Proceedings and Conditional Review of the Nonmarket Economy Entity in NME Antidumping Duty Proceedings, 78 FR 65963 (November 4, 2013)

    4 In accordance with 19 CFR 351.213(b)(1), parties should specify that they are requesting a review of entries from exporters comprising the entity, and to the extent possible, include the names of such exporters in their request.

    All requests must be filed electronically in Enforcement and Compliance's Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Centralized Electronic Service System (ACCESS) on Enforcement and Compliance's ACCESS Web site at http://access.trade.gov. 5 Further, in accordance with 19 CFR 351.303(f)(l)(i), a copy of each request must be served on the petitioner and each exporter or producer specified in the request.

    5See Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Proceedings: Electronic Filing Procedures; Administrative Protective Order Procedures, 76 FR 39263 (July 6, 2011).

    The Department will publish in the Federal Register a notice of “Initiation of Administrative Review of Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Order, Finding, or Suspended Investigation” for requests received by the last day of June 2017. If the Department does not receive, by the last day of June 2017, a request for review of entries covered by an order, finding, or suspended investigation listed in this notice and for the period identified above, the Department will instruct CBP to assess antidumping or countervailing duties on those entries at a rate equal to the cash deposit of (or bond for) estimated antidumping or countervailing duties required on those entries at the time of entry, or withdrawal from warehouse, for consumption and to continue to collect the cash deposit previously ordered.

    For the first administrative review of any order, there will be no assessment of antidumping or countervailing duties on entries of subject merchandise entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption during the relevant provisional-measures “gap” period of the order, if such a gap period is applicable to the period of review.

    This notice is not required by statute but is published as a service to the international trading community.

    Dated: June 1, 2017. Gary Taverman, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11827 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration Initiation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Administrative Reviews AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce (the Department) has received requests to conduct administrative reviews of various antidumping and countervailing duty orders and findings with April anniversary dates. In accordance with the Department's regulations, we are initiating those administrative reviews.

    DATES:

    Effective June 7, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Brenda E. Waters, Office of AD/CVD Operations, Customs Liaison Unit, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230, telephone: (202) 482-4735.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    The Department has received timely requests, in accordance with 19 CFR 351.213(b), for administrative reviews of various antidumping and countervailing duty orders and findings with April anniversary dates.

    All deadlines for the submission of various types of information, certifications, or comments or actions by the Department discussed below refer to the number of calendar days from the applicable starting time.

    Notice of No Sales

    If a producer or exporter named in this notice of initiation had no exports, sales, or entries during the period of review (POR), it must notify the Department within 30 days of publication of this notice in the Federal Register. All submissions must be filed electronically at http://access.trade.gov in accordance with 19 CFR 351.303.1 Such submissions are subject to verification in accordance with section 782(i) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act). Further, in accordance with 19 CFR 351.303(f)(1)(i), a copy must be served on every party on the Department's service list.

    1See Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Proceedings: Electronic Filing Procedures; Administrative Protective Order Procedures, 76 FR 39263 (July 6, 2011).

    Respondent Selection

    In the event the Department limits the number of respondents for individual examination for administrative reviews initiated pursuant to requests made for the orders identified below, the Department intends to select respondents based on U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) data for U.S. imports during the period of review. We intend to place the CBP data on the record within five days of publication of the initiation notice and to make our decision regarding respondent selection within 30 days of publication of the initiation Federal Register notice. Comments regarding the CBP data and respondent selection should be submitted seven days after the placement of the CBP data on the record of this review. Parties wishing to submit rebuttal comments should submit those comments five days after the deadline for the initial comments.

    In the event the Department decides it is necessary to limit individual examination of respondents and conduct respondent selection under section 777A(c)(2) of the Act:

    In general, the Department has found that determinations concerning whether particular companies should be “collapsed” (i.e., treated as a single entity for purposes of calculating antidumping duty rates) require a substantial amount of detailed information and analysis, which often require follow-up questions and analysis. Accordingly, the Department will not conduct collapsing analyses at the respondent selection phase of this review and will not collapse companies at the respondent selection phase unless there has been a determination to collapse certain companies in a previous segment of this antidumping proceeding (i.e., investigation, administrative review, new shipper review or changed circumstances review). For any company subject to this review, if the Department determined, or continued to treat, that company as collapsed with others, the Department will assume that such companies continue to operate in the same manner and will collapse them for respondent selection purposes. Otherwise, the Department will not collapse companies for purposes of respondent selection. Parties are requested to (a) identify which companies subject to review previously were collapsed, and (b) provide a citation to the proceeding in which they were collapsed. Further, if companies are requested to complete the Quantity and Value (Q&V) Questionnaire for purposes of respondent selection, in general each company must report volume and value data separately for itself. Parties should not include data for any other party, even if they believe they should be treated as a single entity with that other party. If a company was collapsed with another company or companies in the most recently completed segment of this proceeding where the Department considered collapsing that entity, complete Q&V data for that collapsed entity must be submitted.

    Deadline for Withdrawal of Request for Administrative Review

    Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.213(d)(1), a party that has requested a review may withdraw that request within 90 days of the date of publication of the notice of initiation of the requested review. The regulation provides that the Department may extend this time if it is reasonable to do so. In order to provide parties additional certainty with respect to when the Department will exercise its discretion to extend this 90-day deadline, interested parties are advised that the Department does not intend to extend the 90-day deadline unless the requestor demonstrates that an extraordinary circumstance has prevented it from submitting a timely withdrawal request. Determinations by the Department to extend the 90-day deadline will be made on a case-by-case basis.

    Separate Rates

    In proceedings involving non-market economy (NME) countries, the Department begins with a rebuttable presumption that all companies within the country are subject to government control and, thus, should be assigned a single antidumping duty deposit rate. It is the Department's policy to assign all exporters of merchandise subject to an administrative review in an NME country this single rate unless an exporter can demonstrate that it is sufficiently independent so as to be entitled to a separate rate.

    To establish whether a firm is sufficiently independent from government control of its export activities to be entitled to a separate rate, the Department analyzes each entity exporting the subject merchandise. In accordance with the separate rates criteria, the Department assigns separate rates to companies in NME cases only if respondents can demonstrate the absence of both de jure and de facto government control over export activities.

    All firms listed below that wish to qualify for separate rate status in the administrative reviews involving NME countries must complete, as appropriate, either a separate rate application or certification, as described below. For these administrative reviews, in order to demonstrate separate rate eligibility, the Department requires entities for whom a review was requested, that were assigned a separate rate in the most recent segment of this proceeding in which they participated, to certify that they continue to meet the criteria for obtaining a separate rate. The Separate Rate Certification form will be available on the Department's Web site at http://enforcement.trade.gov/nme/nme-sep-rate.html on the date of publication of this Federal Register notice. In responding to the certification, please follow the “Instructions for Filing the Certification” in the Separate Rate Certification. Separate Rate Certifications are due to the Department no later than 30 calendar days after publication of this Federal Register notice. The deadline and requirement for submitting a Certification applies equally to NME-owned firms, wholly foreign-owned firms, and foreign sellers who purchase and export subject merchandise to the United States.

    Entities that currently do not have a separate rate from a completed segment of the proceeding 2 should timely file a Separate Rate Application to demonstrate eligibility for a separate rate in this proceeding. In addition, companies that received a separate rate in a completed segment of the proceeding that have subsequently made changes, including, but not limited to, changes to corporate structure, acquisitions of new companies or facilities, or changes to their official company name,3 should timely file a Separate Rate Application to demonstrate eligibility for a separate rate in this proceeding. The Separate Rate Status Application will be available on the Department's Web site at http://enforcement.trade.gov/nme/nme-sep-rate.html on the date of publication of this Federal Register notice. In responding to the Separate Rate Status Application, refer to the instructions contained in the application. Separate Rate Status Applications are due to the Department no later than 30 calendar days of publication of this Federal Register notice. The deadline and requirement for submitting a Separate Rate Status Application applies equally to NME-owned firms, wholly foreign-owned firms, and foreign sellers that purchase and export subject merchandise to the United States.

    2 Such entities include entities that have not participated in the proceeding, entities that were preliminarily granted a separate rate in any currently incomplete segment of the proceeding (e.g., an ongoing administrative review, new shipper review, etc.) and entities that lost their separate rate in the most recently completed segment of the proceeding in which they participated.

    3 Only changes to the official company name, rather than trade names, need to be addressed via a Separate Rate Application. Information regarding new trade names may be submitted via a Separate Rate Certification.

    For exporters and producers who submit a separate-rate status application or certification and subsequently are selected as mandatory respondents, these exporters and producers will no longer be eligible for separate rate status unless they respond to all parts of the questionnaire as mandatory respondents.

    Initiation of Reviews

    In accordance with 19 CFR 351.221(c)(1)(i), we are initiating administrative reviews of the following antidumping and countervailing duty orders and findings. We intend to issue the final results of these reviews not later than April 30, 2018.

    Period to be
  • reviewed
  • Antidumping Duty Proceedings Indonesia: Certain Uncoated Paper 4 A-560-828 8/26/15-2/28/17 The People's Republic of China: Activated Carbon A-570-904 4/1/16-3/31/17 AmeriAsia Advanced Activated Carbon Products Co., Ltd. Anhui Handfull International Trading (Group) Co., Ltd. Anhui Hengyuan Trade Co. Ltd. Anyang Sino-Shon International Trading Co., Ltd. Baoding Activated Carbon Factory Beijing Broad Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Beijing Embrace Technology Co., Ltd. Beijing Haijian Jiechang Environmental Protection Chemicals Beijing Hibridge Trading Co., Ltd. Beijing Pacific Activated Carbon Products Co., Ltd. Bengbu Jiutong Trade Co., Ltd. Bengbu First Commercial & Trading Co., Ltd. Bravo Speciality Chemicals Co., Ltd. Calgon Carbon (Tianjin) Co., Ltd. Carbon Activated Tianjin Co., Ltd. Changji Hongke Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Chengde Jiayu Activated Carbon Factory China National Building Materials and Equipment Import and Export Corp. China National Nuclear General Company Ningxia Activated Carbon Factory China Nuclear Ningxia Activated Carbon Plant China SDIC International Trade Co., Ltd. Chongqing Feiyang Active Carbon Manufacture Da Neng Zheng Da Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Datong Carbon Corporation Datong Changtai Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Datong City Zuoyun County Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Datong Fenghua Activated Carbon Datong Forward Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Datong Fuping Activated Carbon Co. Ltd. Datong Guanghua Activated Co., Ltd. Datong Hongtai Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Datong Huanqing Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Datong Huaxin Activated Carbon Datong Huibao Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Datong Huibao Active Carbon Co., Ltd. Datong Huiyuan Cooperative Activated Carbon Plant Datong Juqiang Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Datong Kaneng Carbon Co. Ltd. Datong Locomotive Coal & Chemicals Co., Ltd. Datong Municipal Yunguang Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Datong Tianzhao Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. DaTong Tri-Star & Power Carbon Plant Datong Weidu Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Datong Xuanyang Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Datong Zuoyun Biyun Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Datong Zuoyun Fu Ping Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Dezhou Jiayu Activated Carbon Factory Dongguan Baofu Activated Carbon Dongguan SYS Hitek Co., Ltd. Dushanzi Chemical Factory Fu Yuan Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Fujian Active Carbon Industrial Co., Ltd. Fujian Jianyang Carbon Plant Fujian Nanping Yuanli Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Fujian Xinsen Carbon Co., Ltd Fujian Yuanli Active Carbon Co., Ltd. Fujian Yuanli Active Carbon Industrial Co., Ltd. Fujian Zhixing Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Fuzhou Taking Chemical Fuzhou Yihuan Carbon Great Bright Industrial Hangzhou Hengxing Activated Carbon Hangzhou Hengxing Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Hangzhou Linan Tianbo Material (HSLATB) Hangzhou Nature Technology Hangzhou Waterland Environmental Technologies Co., Ltd. Hebei Foreign Trade and Advertising Corporation Hebei Luna Trading Co., Ltd. Hebei Shenglun Import & Export Group Company Hegongye Ninxia Activated Carbon Factory Heilongjiang Provincial Hechang Import & Export Co., Ltd. Hongke Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Huaibei Environment Protection Material Plant Huairen Huanyu Purification Material Co., Ltd. Huairen Jinbei Chemical Co., Ltd. Huaiyushan Activated Carbon Group Huatai Activated Carbon Huzhou Zhonglin Activated Carbon Inner Mongolia Taixi Coal Chemical Industry Limited Company Itigi Corp. Ltd. J&D Activated Carbon Filter Co. Ltd. Jacobi Carbons AB Jiangle County Xinhua Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Jiangsu Taixing Yixin Activated Carbon Technology Co., Ltd. Jiangxi Hanson Import Export Co. Jiangxi Huaiyushan Activated Carbon Jiangxi Huaiyushan Activated Carbon Group Co. Jiangxi Huaiyushan Suntar Active Carbon Co., Ltd. Jiangxi Jinma Carbon Jiangxi Yuanli Huaiyushan Active Carbon Co., Ltd. Jianou Zhixing Activated Carbon Jiaocheng Xinxin Purification Material Co., Ltd. Jilin Bright Future Chemicals Company, Ltd. Jilin Province Bright Future Industry and Commerce Co., Ltd. Jing Mao (Dongguan) Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Kaihua Xingda Chemical Co., Ltd. Kemflo (Nanjing) Environmental Tech Keyun Shipping (Tianjin) Agency Co., Ltd. Kunshan Actview Carbon Technology Co., Ltd. Langfang Winfield Filtration Co. Link Shipping Limited Longyan Wanan Activated Carbon Meadwestvaco (China) Holding Co., Ltd. Mindong Lianyi Group Nanjing Mulinsen Charcoal Nantong Ameriasia Advanced Activated Carbon Product Co., Ltd. Ningxia Baiyun Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Baota Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Baota Active Carbon Plant Ningxia Guanghua A/C Co., Ltd. Ningxia Blue-White-Black Activated Carbon (BWB) Ningxia Fengyuan Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Guanghua Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Guanghua Chemical Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Guanghua Cherishmet Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Haoqing Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Henghui Activated Carbon Ningxia Honghua Carbon Industrial Corporation Ningxia Huahui Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Huinong Xingsheng Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Jirui Activated Carbon Ningxia Lingzhou Foreign Trade Co., Ltd. Ningxia Luyuangheng Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Mineral & Chemical Limited Ningxia Pingluo County Yaofu Activated Carbon Plant Ningxia Pingluo Xuanzhong Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Pingluo Yaofu Activated Carbon Factory Ningxia Taixi Activated Carbon Ningxia Tianfu Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Tongfu Coking Co, Ltd. Ningxia Weining Active Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Xingsheng Coal and Active Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Xingsheng Coke & Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Yinchuan Lanqiya Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Ningxia Yirong Alloy Iron Co., Ltd. Ningxia Zhengyuan Activated Nuclear Ningxia Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. OEC Logistic Qingdao Co., Ltd. OEC Logistics Co., Ltd. (Tianjin) Panshan Import and Export Corporation Pingluo Xuanzhong Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Pingluo Yu Yang Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Shanghai Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Shanghai Astronautical Science Technology Development Corporation Shanghai Coking and Chemical Corporation Shanghai Goldenbridge International Shanghai Jiayu International Trading (Dezhou Jiayu and Chengde Jiayu) Shanghai Jinhu Activated Carbon (Xingan Shenxin and Jiangle Xinhua) Shanghai Light Industry and Textile Import & Export Co., Ltd. Shanghai Mebao Activated Carbon Shanghai Xingchang Activated Carbon Shanxi Blue Sky Purification Material Co., Ltd. Shanxi Carbon Industry Co., Ltd. Shanxi Dapu International Co., Ltd. Shanxi Dapu International Trade Co., Ltd. Shanxi DMD Corporation Shanxi Industry Technology Trading Co., Ltd. Shanxi Newtime Co., Ltd. Shanxi Qixian Foreign Trade Corporation Shanxi Qixian Hongkai Active Carbon Goods Shanxi Sincere Industrial Co., Ltd. Shanxi Supply and Marketing Cooperative Shanxi Tianli Ruihai Enterprise Co. Shanxi Tianxi Purification Filter Co., Ltd. Shanxi U Rely International Trade Shanxi Xiaoyi Huanyu Chemicals Co., Ltd. Shanxi Xinhua Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Shanxi Xinhua Chemical Co., Ltd. (formerly Shanxi Xinhua Chemical Factory) Shanxi Xinhua Protective Equipment Shanxi Xinshidai Import Export Co., Ltd. Shanxi Xuanzhong Chemical Industry Co., Ltd. Shanxi Zuoyun Yunpeng Coal Chemistry Shenzhen Sihaiweilong Technology Co. Shijiazhuang Xinshuang Trade Co., Ltd. Sincere Carbon Industrial Co. Ltd. Sinoacarbon International Trading Co, Ltd. Taining Jinhu Carbon Taiyuan Hengxinda Trade Co., Ltd. Tancarb Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Tangshan Solid Carbon Co., Ltd. Tianchang (Tianjin) Activated Carbon Tianjin Century Promote International Trade Co., Ltd. Tianjin Channel Filters Co., Ltd. Tianjin Jacobi International Trading Co. Ltd. Tianjin Maijin Industries Co., Ltd. Tonghua Bright Future Activated Carbon Plant Tonghua Xinpeng Activated Carbon Factory Top One International Trading Co., Ltd. Triple Eagle Container Line Uniclear New-Material Co., Ltd. United Manufacturing International (Beijing) Ltd. Valqua Seal Products (Shanghai) Co. VitaPac (HK) Industrial Ltd. Wellink Chemical Industry Xi Li Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Xi'an Shuntong International Trade & Industrials Co., Ltd. Xiamen All Carbon Corporation Xingan County Shenxin Activated Carbon Factory Xinhua Chemical Company Ltd. Xuanzhong Chemical Industry Yangyuan Hengchang Active Carbon Yicheng Logistics Yinchuan Lanqiya Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Zhejiang Quizhou Zhongsen Carbon Zhejiang Topc Chemical Industry Co. Zhejiang Xingda Activated Carbon Co., Ltd. Zhejiang Yun He Tang Co., Ltd. Zhuxi Activated Carbon Zuoyun Bright Future Activated Carbon Plant Socialist Republic Of Vietman: Certain Frozen Warmwater Shrimp 5 A-552-802 2/1/16-1/31/17 The People's Republic of China: Certain Steel Threaded Rod A-570-932 4/1/16-3/31/17 Aerospace Precision Corp. (Shanghai) Industry Co., Ltd. Aihua Holding Group Co. Ltd. Autocraft Industry (Shanghai) Ltd. Autocraft Industry Ltd. Billion Land Ltd. Billion Technology Ltd. Bolt Mfg. Trade Ltd. Billiongold Hardware Co. Ltd. Brighton Best International (Taiwan) Inc. Brother Holding Group Co. Ltd. C and H International Corporation Catic Fujian Co., Ltd. Cci International Ltd. Century Distribution Systems Inc. Certified Products International Inc. Changshu City Standard Parts Factory China Friendly Nation Hardware Technology Limited D.M.D. International Co. Ltd. Da Cheng Hardware Products Co., Ltd. Dalian Xingxin Steel Fabrication Dongxiang Accuracy Hardware Co., Ltd. Ec International (Nantong) Co., Ltd. Fastco (Shanghai) Trading Co., Ltd. Fasten International Co., Ltd. Fastenal Canada Ltd. Fastwell Industry Co. Ltd. Fook Shing Bolts & Nuts Co. Ltd. Fuda Xiongzhen Machinery Co., Ltd. Fuller Shanghai Co. Ltd. Gem-Year Industrial Co. Ltd. Guangdong Honjinn Metal & Plastic Co., Ltd. Hainan Zhongyan United Development Co. Haining Hifasters Industrial Co. Haining Shende Imp. & Exp. Co. Ltd. Haining Zhongda Fastener Co., Ltd. Haiyan Ai&Lun Standard Fastener Co. Haiyan Chaoqiang Standard Fastener Haiyan Dayu Fasteners Co., Ltd. Haiyan Evergreen Standard Parts Co. Ltd. Haiyan Fuxin High Strength Fastener Haiyan Hatehui Machinery Hardware Haiyan Hurras Import & Export Co. Ltd. Haiyan Jianhe Hardware Co. Ltd. Haiyan Julong Standard Part Co. Ltd. Haiyan Shangchen Imp. & Exp. Co. Haiyan Yuxing Nuts Co. Ltd. Hangzhou Everbright Imp. & Exp. Co. Ltd. Hangzhou Grand Imp. & Exp. Co., Ltd. Hangzhou Great Imp. & Exp. Co. Ltd. Hangzhou Lizhan Hardware Co. Ltd. Hangzhou Prostar Enterprises Ltd. Hangzhou Tongwang Machinery Co., Ltd. Hilti (China) Ltd. Hong Kong Sunrise Fasteners Co. Ltd. Hong Kong Yichen Co. Ltd. Honoble Precision (China) Mfg. Intech Industries Shanghai Co., Ltd. Jiangsu Innovo Precision Machinery Jiangsu Jinhuan Fastener Co., Ltd. Jiangsu Zhongweiyu Communication Equipment Co. Ltd. Jiashan Steelfit Trading Co. Ltd. Jiashan Zhongsheng Metal Products Co., Ltd. Jiaxing Brother Standard Part Co., Ltd.; IFI & Morgan Ltd.; and RMB Fasteners Ltd. Jiaxing Allywin Mfg. Co., Ltd. Jiaxing Chinafar Standard Jiaxing Sini Fastener Co., Ltd. Jiaxing Jinhow Import & Export Co., Ltd. Jiaxing Xinyue Standard Part Co. Ltd. Jiaxing Yaoliang Import & Export Co. Ltd. Jinan Banghe Industry & Trade Co., Ltd. Kinfast Hardware (Shenzhen) Ltd. King Socket Screw Company Ltd. L&W Fasteners Company Macropower Industrial Inc. Mai Seng International Trading Co., Ltd. MB Services Company Midas Union Co., Ltd. Nanjing Prosper Import & Export Corporation Ltd. Nantong Runyou Metal Products New Pole Power System Co. Ltd. Ningbo Abc Fasteners Co., Ltd. Ningbiao Bolts & Nuts Manufacturing Co. Ningbo Beilun Milfast Metalworks Co. Ltd. Ningbo Beilun Pingxin Hardware Co., Ltd. Ningbo Dexin Fastener Co. Ltd. Ningbo Dongxin High-Strength Nut Co., Ltd. Ningbo Exact Fasteners Co., Ltd. Ningbo Fastener Factory Ningbo Fengya Imp. and Exp. Co. Ltd. Ningbo Fourway Co., Ltd. Ningbo Haishu Holy Hardware Import and Export Co. Ltd. Ningbo Haishu Wit Import & Export Co. Ltd. Ningbo Haishu Yixie Import & Export Co. Ltd. Ningbo Jinding Fastening Piece Co., Ltd. Ningbo MPF Manufacturing Co. Ltd. Ningbo Panxiang Imp. & Exp. Co. Ltd. Ningbo Seduno Imp. Exp. Co., Ltd. Ningbo Qianjiu Instrument Case Factory Ningbo Yili Import & Export Co., Ltd. Ningbo Yinzhou Dongxiang Accuracy Hardware Co., Ltd. Ningbo Yinzhou Foreign Trade Co., Ltd. Ningbo Yinzhou Woafan Industry & Trade Co., Ltd. Ningbo Zhenhai Beisuda Equipment Co. Ningbo Zhenhai Jinhuan Fasteners Ningbo Zhenghai Yongding Fastener Co., Ltd. Ningbo Zhenhai Dingli Fastener Screw Co., Ltd. Ningbo Zhongjiang High Strength Bolts Co. Ltd. Ningbo Zhongjiang Petroleum Pipes & Machinery Co. Ltd. Orient International Holding Shanghai Rongheng Intl Trading Co. Ltd. Orient Rider Corporation Ltd. Pol Shin Fastener (Zhejiang) Co. Prosper Business and Industry Co., Ltd. Qingdao Free Trade Zone Health Intl. Qingdao Top Steel Industrial Co. Ltd. Sampulse Industrial Co., Ltd. Shaanxi Succeed Trading Co., Ltd. Shanghai Autocraft Co., Ltd. Shanghai Beitra Fasteners Co., Ltd. Shanghai E-Heng Imp. & Exp. Co. Ltd. Shanghai East Best Foreign Trade Co. Shanghai East Best International Business Development Co., Ltd. Shanghai Fortune International Co. Ltd. Shanghai Furen International Trading Shanghai Hunan Foreign Economic Co., Ltd. Shanghai Jiabao Trade Development Co. Ltd. Shanghai Nanshi Foreign Economic Co. Shanghai Overseas International Trading Co. Ltd. Shanghai Prime Machinery Co. Ltd. Shanghai Printing & Dyeing and Knitting Mill Shanghai Printing & Packaging Machinery Corp Shanghai Recky International Trading Co., Ltd. Shanghai Sinotex United Corp. Ltd. Shanghai Strong Hardware Co. Li Shanghai Wisechain Fasteners Ltd. Shenzhen Fenda Technology Co., Ltd. Shenzhen Haozhenghao Technology Co. Shijianzhuang Huitongxiang Li Trade Soyoung Industrial Co., Ltd. SRC Metal (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. Suntec Industries Co., Ltd. Suzhou Henry International Trading Co., Ltd. T and C Fastener Co. Ltd. T and L Industry Co. Ltd. Taizhou Maixing Machinery Co. Telsto Development Co., Ltd. The Hoffman Group International Tianjin Port Free Trade Zone Tianjin Star International Trade Co., Ltd. Tong Ming Entreprise Co., Ltd. Tong Win International Co., Ltd. Tri Steel Co., Ltd. Wisechain Trading Limited Wuxi Metec Metal Co. Ltd. Xiamen Hua Min Imp. and Exp. Ltd. Xiamen Rongxinda Industry Co., Ltd. Xiamen Yuhui Import & Export Co., Ltd. Yogendra International Yuyao Hualun Imp. & Exp. Co., Ltd. Zhangjiagang Ever Faith Industry Co. Zhejiang Heirrmu Mechanical and Electrical Equipment Manufacturing Co Ltd. Zhejiang Heiter Industries Co., Ltd. Zhejiang Heiter Mfg & Trade Co. Ltd. Zhejiang Jin Zeen Fasteners Co. Ltd. Zhejiang Junyue Standard Part Co., Ltd. Zhejiang Laibao Precision Technology Co. Ltd. Zhejiang Metals & Minerals Imp & Exp Co. Ltd. Zhejiang Morgan Brother Technology Co. Ltd. Zhejiang New Century Imp & Exp Co. Ltd. Zhejiang New Oriental Fastener Co., Ltd. Zhejiang Zhenglian Industry Development Co., Ltd. Zhongsheng Metal Co., Ltd. Zhoushan Zhengyuan Standard Parts Co., Ltd. The People's Republic of China: Drawn Stainless Steel Sinks A-570-983 4/1/16-3/31/17 B&R Industries Limited Elkay (China) Kitchen Solutions, Co., Ltd. Feidong Import and Export Co., Ltd. Foshan Shunde MingHao Kitchen Utensils Co., Ltd. Foshan Zhaoshun Trade Co., Ltd. Franke Asia Sourcing Ltd. Grand Hill Work Company Guangdong Dongyuan Kitchenware Industrial Co., Ltd. Guangdong G-Top Import & Export Co., Ltd. Guangdong New Shichu Import & Export Company Limited Guangdong Yingao Kitchen Utensils Co., Ltd. Hangzhou Heng's Industries Co., Ltd. Hubei Foshan Success Imp & Exp Co. Ltd. J&C Industries Enterprise Limited Jiangmen Hongmao Trading Co., Ltd. Jiangmen New Star Hi-Tech Enterprise Ltd. Jiangmen Pioneer Import & Export Co., Ltd. Jiangmen Xinhe Stainless Steel Products Co., Ltd. Jiangxi Zoje Kitchen & Bath Industry Co., Ltd. KaiPing Dawn Plumbing Products, Inc. Ningbo Afa Kitchen and Bath Co., Ltd. Ningbo Oulin Kitchen Utensils Co., Ltd. Primy Cooperation Limited Shenzhen Kehuaxing Industrial Ltd. Shunde Foodstuffs Import & Export Company Limited of Guangdong Shunde Native Produce Import and Export Co., Ltd. of Guangdong Yuyao Afa Kitchenware Co., Ltd. Zhongshan Newecan Enterprise Development Corporation Zhongshan Silk Imp. & Exp. Group Co., Ltd. of Guangdong Zhongshan Superte Kitchenware Co., Ltd./Zhongshan Superte Kitchenware Co., Ltd. invoiced as Foshan Zhaoshun Trade Co., Ltd Zhuhai Kohler Kitchen & Bathroom Products Co., Ltd. The People's Republic of China: Magnesium Metal A-570-896 4/1/16-3/31/17 Tianjin Magnesium International Co., Ltd. Tianjin Magnesium Metal Co., Ltd. The People's Republic of China: Non-Malleable Cast Iron Pipe Fittings A-570-875 4/1/16-3/31/17 Dalian Reliable Industrial Co., Ltd. Tianjin Port Free Trade Zone Star Pipe International Trade Co., Ltd. Countervailing Duty Proceedings Indonesia: Certain Uncoated Paper 6 C-560-829 6/29/15-12/31/16 The People's Republic of China: Drawn Stainless Steel Sinks C-570-984 1/1/16-12/31/16 Zhongshan Superte Kitchenware Co., Ltd.
    Suspension Agreements

    None.

    4 On May 9, 2017, the Department inadvertently initiated the review for only PT. Indah Kiat Pulp and Paper Tbk (IK) and PT. Pabrik Kertas Tjiwi Kimia Tbk (TK) (collectively APP) in the initiation notice that published on May 9, 2017 (82 FR 21513). However, in the final determination of the underlying investigation, we found that IK, TK, and their affiliate Pindo Deli Pulp and Paper Mills (PD) comprised a single entity. See Certain Uncoated Paper from Indonesia: Final Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value, 81 FR 3101, 3102 (January 20, 2016). As a result, we now correct the initiation of this review to include PD.

    5 On April 10, 2017, the Department initiated its administrative review of Certain Frozen Warmwater Shrimp from the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. See Initiation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Administrative Reviews, 82 FR 17188 (April 10, 2017). The Department inadvertently omitted a footnote with respect to the initiation of one exporter. We have provided the footnote in this initiation notice:

    Shrimp produced and exported by Minh Phu Seafood Corporation were excluded from the Vietnam AD order effective July 18, 2016. See Certain Frozen Warmwater Shrimp from the Socialist Republic of Vietnam: Notice of Implementation of Determination Under Section 129 of the Uruguay Round Agreements Act and Partial Revocation of the Antidumping Duty Order, 81 FR 47756, 47757-47758 (July 22, 2016). Accordingly, we are initiating this administrative review with respect to Minh Phu Seafood Corporation only for shrimp produced in Vietnam where Minh Phu Seafood Corporation acted as either the manufacturer or exporter (but not both).

    6 On May 9, 2017, the Department inadvertently initiated the review for only PT. Indah Kiat Pulp and Paper Tbk (IK) and PT. Pabrik Kertas Tjiwi Kimia Tbk (TK) (collectively APP) in the initiation notice that published on May 9, 2017 (82 FR 21513). However, in the final determination of the underlying investigation, we found that IK, TK, and their affiliate Pindo Deli Pulp and Paper Mills (PD) comprised a single entity. See Certain Uncoated Paper From Indonesia: Final Affirmative Countervailing Duty Determination, 81 FR 3104 (January 20, 2016). As a result, we now correct the initiation of this review to include PD.

    Duty Absorption Reviews

    During any administrative review covering all or part of a period falling between the first and second or third and fourth anniversary of the publication of an antidumping duty order under 19 CFR 351.211 or a determination under 19 CFR 351.218(f)(4) to continue an order or suspended investigation (after sunset review), the Secretary, if requested by a domestic interested party within 30 days of the date of publication of the notice of initiation of the review, will determine whether antidumping duties have been absorbed by an exporter or producer subject to the review if the subject merchandise is sold in the United States through an importer that is affiliated with such exporter or producer. The request must include the name(s) of the exporter or producer for which the inquiry is requested.

    Gap Period Liquidation

    For the first administrative review of any order, there will be no assessment of antidumping or countervailing duties on entries of subject merchandise entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption during the relevant provisional-measures “gap” period, of the order, if such a gap period is applicable to the POR.

    Administrative Protective Orders and Letters of Appearance

    Interested parties must submit applications for disclosure under administrative protective orders in accordance with the procedures outlined in the Department's regulations at 19 CFR 351.305. Those procedures apply to administrative reviews included in this notice of initiation. Parties wishing to participate in any of these administrative reviews should ensure that they meet the requirements of these procedures (e.g., the filing of separate letters of appearance as discussed at 19 CFR 351.103(d)).

    Factual Information Requirements

    The Department's regulations identify five categories of factual information in 19 CFR 351.102(b)(21), which are summarized as follows: (i) Evidence submitted in response to questionnaires; (ii) evidence submitted in support of allegations; (iii) publicly available information to value factors under 19 CFR 351.408(c) or to measure the adequacy of remuneration under 19 CFR 351.511(a)(2); (iv) evidence placed on the record by the Department; and (v) evidence other than factual information described in (i)-(iv). These regulations require any party, when submitting factual information, to specify under which subsection of 19 CFR 351.102(b)(21) the information is being submitted and, if the information is submitted to rebut, clarify, or correct factual information already on the record, to provide an explanation identifying the information already on the record that the factual information seeks to rebut, clarify, or correct. The regulations, at 19 CFR 351.301, also provide specific time limits for such factual submissions based on the type of factual information being submitted. Please review the final rule, available at http://enforcement.trade.gov/frn/2013/1304frn/2013-08227.txt, prior to submitting factual information in this segment.

    Any party submitting factual information in an antidumping duty or countervailing duty proceeding must certify to the accuracy and completeness of that information.7 Parties are hereby reminded that revised certification requirements are in effect for company/government officials as well as their representatives. All segments of any antidumping duty or countervailing duty proceedings initiated on or after August 16, 2013, should use the formats for the revised certifications provided at the end of the Final Rule. 8 The Department intends to reject factual submissions in any proceeding segments if the submitting party does not comply with applicable revised certification requirements.

    7See section 782(b) of the Act.

    8See Certification of Factual Information To Import Administration During Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Proceedings, 78 FR 42678 (July 17, 2013) (Final Rule); see also the frequently asked questions regarding the Final Rule, available at http://enforcement.trade.gov/tlei/notices/factual_info_final_rule_FAQ_07172013.pdf.

    Extension of Time Limits Regulation

    Parties may request an extension of time limits before a time limit established under Part 351 expires, or as otherwise specified by the Secretary. See 19 CFR 351.302. In general, an extension request will be considered untimely if it is filed after the time limit established under Part 351 expires. For submissions which are due from multiple parties simultaneously, an extension request will be considered untimely if it is filed after 10:00 a.m. on the due date. Examples include, but are not limited to: (1) Case and rebuttal briefs, filed pursuant to 19 CFR 351.309; (2) factual information to value factors under 19 CFR 351.408(c), or to measure the adequacy of remuneration under 19 CFR 351.511(a)(2), filed pursuant to 19 CFR 351.301(c)(3) and rebuttal, clarification and correction filed pursuant to 19 CFR 351.301(c)(3)(iv); (3) comments concerning the selection of a surrogate country and surrogate values and rebuttal; (4) comments concerning U.S. Customs and Border Protection data; and (5) quantity and value questionnaires. Under certain circumstances, the Department may elect to specify a different time limit by which extension requests will be considered untimely for submissions which are due from multiple parties simultaneously. In such a case, the Department will inform parties in the letter or memorandum setting forth the deadline (including a specified time) by which extension requests must be filed to be considered timely. This modification also requires that an extension request must be made in a separate, stand-alone submission, and clarifies the circumstances under which the Department will grant untimely-filed requests for the extension of time limits. These modifications are effective for all segments initiated on or after October 21, 2013. Please review the final rule, available at http://www.thefederalregister.org/fdsys/pkg/FR-2013-09-20/html/2013-22853.htm, prior to submitting factual information in these segments.

    These initiations and this notice are in accordance with section 751(a) of the Act (19 U.S.C. 1675(a)) and 19 CFR 351.221(c)(1)(i).

    Dated: June 1, 2017. Gary Taverman, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11828 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-485-805] Certain Small Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line and Pressure Pipe From Romania: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2015-2016 AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce (the Department) is conducting an administrative review of the antidumping duty order on certain small diameter carbon and alloy seamless standard, line and pressure pipe (small diameter seamless pipe) from Romania. The review covers one producer/exporter of the subject merchandise, S.C. Silcotub S.A. (Silicotub). The period of review (POR) is August 1, 2015, through July 31, 2016. We preliminarily find that sales of subject merchandise have not been made at prices below normal value (NV). Interested parties are invited to comment on these preliminary results.

    DATES:

    Effective June 7, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Kate Johnson or Denisa Ursu, AD/CVD Operations, Office VIII, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-4929 or (202) 482-2285, respectively.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Scope of the Order

    The merchandise subject to the Order1 is small diameter seamless pipe. The product is currently classified under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) subheadings 7304.10.10.20, 7304.10.50.20, 7304.19.10.20, 7304.19.50.20, 7304.31.30.00, 7304.31.60.50, 7304.39.00.16, 7304.39.00.20, 7304.39.00.24, 7304.39.00.28, 7304.39.00.32, 7304.51.50.05, 7304.51.50.60, 7304.59.60.00, 7304.59.80.10, 7304.59.80.15, 7304.59.80.20, and 7304.59.80.25. The HTSUS subheadings are provided for convenience and customs purposes only; the written product description of the scope of the Order is dispositive.2

    1See Notice of Amended Final Determination of Sales at Less Than Fair Value and Antidumping Duty Order: Certain Small Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line and Pressure Pipe from Romania, 65 FR 48963 (August 10, 2000) (the Order).

    2See Memorandum from Gary Taverman, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations, to Ronald K. Lorentzen, Acting Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance, entitled “Certain Small Diameter Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line and Pressure Pipe from Romania: Decision Memorandum for Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2015-2016,” dated concurrently with and hereby adopted by this notice (Preliminary Decision Memorandum), for a complete description of the scope of the Order.

    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 price (CEP) is calculated in accordance with section 772 of the Act. NV 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. The Preliminary Decision Memorandum is a public document and is on file electronically via Enforcement and Compliance's Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Centralized Electronic Service System (ACCESS). ACCESS is available to registered users at http://access.trade.gov and it is available to all parties in the Central Records Unit, room B0824 of the main Department of Commerce building. In addition, a complete version of the Preliminary Decision Memorandum can be accessed directly 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. A list of the topics discussed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum is attached as the Appendix to this notice.

    Preliminary Results of Review

    The Department preliminarily determines that the following weighted-average dumping margin exists:

    Producer/Exporter Weighted-
  • average
  • dumping
  • margin
  • (percent)
  • S.C. Silcotub S.A. 0.00
    Disclosure and Public Comment

    The Department intends to disclose the calculations performed in connection with these preliminary results to interested parties within five days after the date of publication of this notice.3 Interested parties may submit case briefs to the Department no 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 no later than five days after the time limit for filing case briefs.4 Parties who submit case briefs or rebuttal briefs in this proceeding are encouraged to submit with each argument: (1) A statement of the issue; (2) a brief summary of the argument; and (3) a table of authorities.5 Case and rebuttal briefs should be filed using ACCESS.6

    3See 19 CFR 351.224(b).

    4See 19 CFR 351.309(d).

    5See 19 CFR 351.309(c)(2) and (d)(2).

    6See 19 CFR 351.303.

    Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.310(c), interested parties who wish to request a hearing must submit a written request to the Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance, filed electronically via ACCESS. An electronically-filed document must be received successfully in its entirety by ACCESS by 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time within 30 days after the date of publication of this notice.7 Hearing requests should contain: (1) The party's name, address, and telephone number; (2) the number of participants; and (3) a list of issues to be discussed. Issues raised in the hearing will be limited to issues raised in the briefs. If a request for a hearing is made, parties will be notified of the time and date for the hearing to be held at the U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230.8

    7See 19 CFR 351.310(c).

    8Id.

    The Department intends to issue the final results of this administrative review, including the results of its analysis of the issues raised in any written briefs, no later than 120 days after the date of publication of this notice, pursuant to section 751(a)(3)(A) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.213(h), unless this deadline is extended.

    Assessment Rates

    Upon issuance of the final results, the Department shall determine, and CBP shall assess, antidumping duties on all appropriate entries covered by this review.9 Silcotub reported the names of the importers of record and the entered value for all of its sales to the United States during the POR. If Silcotub's weighted-average dumping margins are not zero or de minimis (i.e., less than 0.50 percent) in the final results of this review, we will calculate importer-specific assessment rates on the basis of the ratio of the total amount of dumping calculated for the importer's examined sales and the total entered value of those sales in accordance with 19 CFR 351.212(b)(1), and we will instruct CBP to assess antidumping duties on all appropriate entries covered by this review. 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.

    9See 19 CFR 351.212(b).

    In accordance with the Department's “automatic assessment” practice, for entries of subject merchandise during the POR produced by Silcotub for which it did not know its merchandise was destined for the United States, we will instruct CBP to liquidate unreviewed entries at the all-others rate.10

    10 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 the publication date of the final results of this review.

    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 small diameter seamless pipe from Romania 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 rate for Silcotub 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 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; (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 for the most recently-completed segment for the manufacturer of the merchandise; (4) the cash deposit rate for all other manufacturers or exporters will continue to be 13.06 percent, the all-others rate established in the Order. These cash deposit requirements, when imposed, shall remain in effect until further notice.

    Notification to Importers

    This notice also 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 Secretary's presumption that reimbursement of antidumping duties occurred and the subsequent assessment of double antidumping duties.

    We are issuing and publishing these results in accordance with sections 751(a)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Act, and 19 CFR 351.213(h) and 351.221(b)(4).

    Dated: June 1, 2017. Ronald K. Lorentzen, Acting Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance. Appendix—List of Topics Discussed in the Preliminary Decision Memorandum 1. Summary 2. Background 3. Scope of the Order 4. Discussion of the Methodology i. Normal Value Comparisons ii. Product Comparisons iii. Date of Sale iv. Constructed Export Price v. Normal Value vi. Verification vii. Currency Conversion 5. Recommendation
    [FR Doc. 2017-11825 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration Notice of Scope Rulings AGENCY:

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

    DATES:

    Effective June 7, 2017.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Commerce (the Department) hereby publishes a list of scope rulings and anticircumvention determinations made between April 1, 2016, and June 30, 2016, inclusive. We intend to publish future lists after the close of the next calendar quarter.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Brenda E. Waters, AD/CVD Operations, Customs Liaison Unit, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: 202-482-4735.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    The Department's regulations provide that the Secretary will publish in the Federal Register a list of scope rulings on a quarterly basis.1 Our most recent notification of scope rulings was published on March 15, 2017.2 This current notice covers all scope rulings and anticircumvention determinations made by Enforcement and Compliance between April 1, 2016, and June 30, 2016, inclusive. Subsequent lists will follow after the close of each calendar quarter.

    1See 19 CFR 351.225(o).

    2See Notice of Scope Rulings, 82 FR 13794 (March 15, 2017).

    Scope Rulings Made Between April 1, 2016 and June 30, 2016 People's Republic of China A-570-967 and C-570-968: Aluminum Extrusions From the People's Republic of China

    Requestor: Bottom Line Traction, Inc.; Portal sets, which are used as entryways for retail spaces, are outside the scope of the orders because, at the time of importation, they constitute finished goods kits that contain non-extruded aluminum parts beyond mere fasteners, along with other parts necessary to assemble the finished downstream; April 15, 2016.

    A-570-967 and C-570-968: Aluminum Extrusions From the People's Republic of China

    Requestor: Lockfast, Inc.; Banner stand kits are outside the scope of the orders because they constitute a finished goods kit that includes non-extruded aluminum components beyond mere fasteners, along with other parts necessary to assemble the finished banner stand upon importation; June 16, 2016.

    A-570-967 and C-570-968: Aluminum Extrusions From the People's Republic of China

    Requestor: Ancra International LLC; Lift-a-Deck II foot assembly, a component of an adjustable system of tracks, beams and other components designed to maximize the usage of cargo space in trucks and trailers, is outside the scope of the orders because it meets the requirement of subassemblies, which are imported as finished merchandise, ready for installation into a downstream product; June 20, 2016.

    A-570-018 and C-570-019: Boltless Steel Shelving Units Prepackaged for Sale From the People's Republic of China

    Requestor: Seville Classics, Inc.; Outside the scope of the orders based on the plain language of the scope because none of the 21 shoe and utility rack frames lock together for the structural integrity of the unit without the inclusion of the decking; June 24, 2016.

    A-570-018 and C-570-019: Boltless Steel Shelving Units Prepackaged for Sale From the People's Republic of China

    Requestor: Illinois Tool Works Inc.; Outside the scope of the orders based on the plain language of the scope because two of the bicycle racks require bolts for assembly and the horizontal support member for the third bicycle rack does not include the capacity for a horizontal storage surface; June 30, 2016.

    A-570-016 and C-570-017: Certain Passenger Vehicle and Light Truck Tires From the People's Republic of China

    Requestor: American Omni Trading Company LLC and Unicorn Tire Corporation; racing tires that contain a “DOT” symbol but are not of a size listed in the passenger vehicle or light truck section of the Tire and Rim Association Year Book are outside the scope of the antidumping and countervailing duty orders on certain passenger vehicle and light truck tires from the People's Republic of China; May 27, 2016.

    A-570-979 and C-570-980: Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaic Cells, Whether or not Assembled Into Modules From the People's Republic of China

    Requestor: Goal Zero, LLC; the Torch 250 Flashlight is covered by the scope of the antidumping and countervailing duty orders on crystalline silicon photovoltaic cells, whether or not assembled into modules, from the People's Republic of China because one of its functions is to provide power for other electronic devices and thus it does not qualify for the exclusion identified in the scope of the orders; May 13, 2016.

    A-570-970 and C-570-971: Multilayered Wood Flooring From the People's Republic of China

    Requestor: Dunhua Shengda Wood Industry Co., Ltd. (Dunhua Shengda); Dunhua Shengda's two-layer wood flooring products are not within the scope of the Orders on multilayered wood flooring from the PRC because they lack the expressed requirement of two or more layers or plies of wood veneer in combination with a core; April 25, 2016.

    A-570-970 and C-570-971: Multilayered Wood Flooring From the People's Republic of China

    Requestor: Zhejiang Biyork Wood Co., Ltd. (Biyork Wood); Biyork Wood's two-layer constructed wood flooring panels are not within the scope of the Orders on multilayered wood flooring from the PRC because they lack the expressed requirement of two or more layers or plies of wood veneer in combination with a core; May 23, 2016.

    A-570-970 and C-570-971: Multilayered Wood Flooring From the People's Republic of China

    Requestor: Jiangsu Beier Decoration Material Co. Ltd. (Beier Decoration); Beier Decoration's three-layer construction wood flooring panel is not within the scope of the Orders on multilayered wood flooring from the PRC because they lack the expressed requirement of two or more layers or plies of wood veneer in combination with a core; June 21, 2016.

    Interested parties are invited to comment on the completeness of this list of completed scope and anticircumvention inquiries. Any comments should be submitted to the Deputy Assistant Secretary for AD/CVD Operations, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., APO/Dockets Unit, Room 18022, Washington, DC 20230.

    This notice is published in accordance with 19 CFR 351.225(o).

    Dated: June 1, 2017. Gary Taverman, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11829 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XF455 Marine Mammals; File No. 20523 AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice; receipt of application.

    SUMMARY:

    Notice is hereby given that the National Museum of Natural History [Kirk Johnson, Ph.D., Responsible Party] P.O. Box 37012, Washington, DC 20013, has applied in due form for a permit to receive, import, and export marine mammal parts for scientific research.

    DATES:

    Written, telefaxed, or email comments must be received on or before July 7, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    The application and related documents are available for review by selecting “Records Open for Public Comment” from the “Features” box on the Applications and Permits for Protected Species (APPS) home page, https://apps.nmfs.noaa.gov, and then selecting File No. 20523 from the list of available applications.

    These documents are also available upon written request or by appointment in the Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, 1315 East-West Highway, Room 13705, Silver Spring, MD 20910; phone (301) 427-8401; fax (301) 713-0376.

    Written comments on this application should be submitted to the Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, at the address listed above. Comments may also be submitted by facsimile to (301) 713-0376, or by email to [email protected] Please include the File No. 20523 in the subject line of the email comment.

    Those individuals requesting a public hearing should submit a written request to the Chief, Permits and Conservation Division at the address listed above. The request should set forth the specific reasons why a hearing on this application would be appropriate.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Shasta McClenahan or Jennifer Skidmore, (301) 427-8401.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The subject permit is requested under the authority of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (MMPA; 16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.), the regulations governing the taking and importing of marine mammals (50 CFR part 216), the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA; 16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), the regulations governing the taking, importing, and exporting of endangered and threatened species (50 CFR 222-226), and the Fur Seal Act of 1966, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1151 et seq.).

    The applicant proposes to receive, import, and export biological samples from up to 5,000 cetaceans and 1,000 pinnipeds (excluding walrus) annually for scientific research, curation, and education. Receipt, import, and export is requested worldwide. Sources of samples may include marine mammal strandings in foreign countries, foreign and domestic subsistence harvests, captive animals, other authorized researchers or curated collections, and marine mammals that died incidental to commercial fishing operations in the U.S. and foreign countries, where such take is legal. The requested duration of the permit is 5 years.

    In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), an initial determination has been made that the activity proposed is categorically excluded from the requirement to prepare an environmental assessment or environmental impact statement.

    Concurrent with the publication of this notice in the Federal Register, NMFS is forwarding copies of the application to the Marine Mammal Commission and its Committee of Scientific Advisors.

    Dated: June 1, 2017. Donna S. Wieting, Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11710 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XF453 Marine Mammals; File No. 21114 AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice; receipt of application.

    SUMMARY:

    Notice is hereby given that The Whale Museum (Responsible Party: Jenny Atkinson), P.O. Box 945, Friday Harbor, WA 98250 has applied in due form for a permit to conduct research on marine mammals.

    DATES:

    Written, telefaxed, or email comments must be received on or before July 7, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    The application and related documents are available for review by selecting “Records Open for Public Comment” from the “Features” box on the Applications and Permits for Protected Species (APPS) home page, https://apps.nmfs.noaa.gov, and then selecting File No. 21114 from the list of available applications.

    These documents are also available upon written request or by appointment in the Permits and Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, 1315 East-West Highway, Room 13705, Silver Spring, MD 20910; phone (301) 427-8401; fax (301) 713-0376.

    Written comments on this application should be submitted to the Chief, Permits and Conservation Division, at the address listed above. Comments may also be submitted by facsimile to (301) 713-0376, or by email to [email protected] Please include the File No. in the subject line of the email comment.

    Those individuals requesting a public hearing should submit a written request to the Chief, Permits and Conservation Division at the address listed above. The request should set forth the specific reasons why a hearing on this application would be appropriate.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Shasta McClenahan or Amy Hapeman, (301) 427-8401.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The subject permit is requested under the authority of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (MMPA; 16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.), the regulations governing the taking and importing of marine mammals (50 CFR part 216), the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (ESA; 16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), and the regulations governing the taking, importing, and exporting of endangered and threatened species (50 CFR parts 222-226).

    The applicant proposes to take cetaceans during vessel surveys for the Soundwatch Boater Education program in the in-land waters of Washington to evaluate vessel regulations and guidelines, characterize vessel trends, and prevent vessel disturbances to marine mammals. The primary target species are Southern Resident and transient killer whales (Orcinus orca), but additional cetaceans may include fin (Balaenoptera physalus), gray (Eschrichtius robustus), humpback (Megaptera novaeangliae), and minke (B. acutorostrata) whales, Dall's (Phocoenoides dalli) and harbor (Phocoena phocoena) porpoises, and Pacific white-sided dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens). Research activities would include photography, video recording, photo-identification, behavioral observations, and incidental harassment. Take numbers would include up to 100 whales of each killer whale stock, and up to 20 individuals each of all other cetacean species, annually. Five species of non-listed pinnipeds may be harassed incidental to research activities. Please see the take table for complete list of take numbers by species. The permit would be valid for five years from the date of issuance.

    In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), an initial determination has been made that the activity proposed is categorically excluded from the requirement to prepare an environmental assessment or environmental impact statement.

    Concurrent with the publication of this notice in the Federal Register, NMFS is forwarding copies of the application to the Marine Mammal Commission and its Committee of Scientific Advisors.

    Dated: June 1, 2017. Donna S. Wieting, Director, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11709 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION Closed Teleconference Meeting AGENCY:

    National Assessment Governing Board, U.S. Department of Education.

    ACTION:

    Notice of a closed teleconference meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    This notice sets forth the agenda for a closed teleconference meeting of the National Assessment Governing Board (hereafter referred to as Governing Board) to review and take action on nominations for Governing Board vacancies, in accordance with the personnel appointment actions stipulated under § 302(d) of Public Law 107-279.

    Due to the need to adhere to the Governing Board's established nominations cycle for Governing Board vacancies, this notice is being posted less than 15 days prior to the meeting.

    DATES:

    Thursday, June 22, 2017, from 3:00 p.m. to 3:45 p.m. EST.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Munira Mwalimu, Executive Officer/Designated Federal Official of the Governing Board, 800 North Capitol Street NW., Suite 825, Washington, DC 20002, telephone: (202) 357-6938, fax: (202) 357-6945.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Statutory Authority and Function:

    The Governing Board is established under the National Assessment of Educational Progress Authorization Act, Title III of Public Law 107-279. Information on the Governing Board and its work can be found at www.nagb.gov.

    The Governing Board is established to formulate policy for the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). The Governing Board's congressionally mandated responsibilities include developing appropriate student achievement levels for each grade and subject tested. Based on recommendations from policymakers, educators, and members of the general public, the Governing Board sets specific achievement levels for each subject area and grade assessed on The Nation's Report Card. Achievement levels are performance standards that show what students should know and be able to do. Results are reported as percentages of students performing at or above the Basic and Proficient levels, and at the Advanced level. Additional information on the Governing Board and memberships terms can be found at https://www.nagb.gov.

    Notice of the meeting is required under § 10(a)(2) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA). The discussion during the teleconference pertains solely to internal personnel rules and practices of an agency and information of a personal nature where disclosure would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy. As such, the discussions are protected by exemptions 2 and 6 of § 552b(c) of Title 5 of the United States Code.

    The National Assessment Governing Board will participate in a teleconference meeting on Thursday, June 22, 2017 from 3:00 p.m.-3:45 p.m. EST. The purpose of the meeting is to review the Nomination Committee's recommendations for the final slate of candidates for the 2017 Governing Board vacancies for terms that begin on October 1, 2017. Following discussion, the Governing Board will take action on the final slate of candidates to be submitted to the Secretary of Education.

    Members of the public will have an opportunity to provide written feedback on the closed teleconference meeting in advance of the call at [email protected], with the email subject header titled “Teleconference Feedback on Nominations.” Comments must be received no later than 12:00 p.m. EST on June 12, 2017.

    Dated: June 1, 2017. William J. Bushaw, Executive Director.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11726 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION Applications for New Awards; Technical Assistance and Dissemination To Improve Services and Results for Children With Disabilities—Technical Assistance Center on Positive Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Outcomes for Young Children With, and at Risk for, Developmental Delays or Disabilities AGENCY:

    Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, Department of Education.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Education is issuing a notice inviting applications for new awards for fiscal year (FY) 2017 for Technical Assistance and Dissemination To Improve Services and Results for Children With Disabilities—Technical Assistance Center on Positive Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Outcomes for Young Children With, and at Risk for, Developmental Delays or Disabilities, Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) number 84.326B.

    DATES:

    Applications Available: June 7, 2017.

    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: July 24, 2017.

    Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: September 20, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Jennifer Tschantz, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., Room 5143, Potomac Center Plaza, Washington, DC 20202-5108. Telephone: (202) 245-6282.

    If you use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) or a text telephone (TTY), call the Federal Relay Service (FRS), toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Full Text of Announcement I. Funding Opportunity Description

    Purpose of Program: The purpose of the Technical Assistance and Dissemination to Improve Services and Results for Children with Disabilities program is to promote academic achievement and to improve results for children with disabilities by providing technical assistance (TA), supporting model demonstration projects, disseminating useful information, and implementing activities that are supported by scientifically based research.

    Priority: In accordance with 34 CFR 75.105(b)(2)(v), this priority is from allowable activities specified in the statute (see sections 663 and 681(d) of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)).

    Absolute Priority: For FY 2017 and any subsequent year in which we make awards from the list of unfunded applications from this competition, this priority is an absolute priority. Under 34 CFR 75.105(c)(3), we consider only applications that meet this priority.

    This priority is:

    Technical Assistance Center on Positive Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Outcomes for Young Children with, and at Risk for, Developmental Delays or Disabilities.

    Background

    Young children's social, emotional, and behavioral development has long been recognized as critical for school readiness. Children who are socially competent and exhibit positive behavior during the early childhood years are more successful in school and in life (Jones, Greenberg, & Crowley, 2015). Despite this, early childhood programs that serve infants, toddlers, and preschool children (young children) with, and at risk for, developmental delays or disabilities have struggled to systematically promote positive social and emotional development and reduce challenging behaviors.

    Early childhood personnel are often not trained to adequately support young children's social, emotional, and behavioral development (Buettner, Hur, Jeon, & Andrews, 2016). As a result, early childhood personnel frequently report that coping with challenging behavior is their most pressing training need and presents a barrier to including young children with disabilities into programs with their typically developing peers (Hemmeter, Corso, & Cheatham, 2006; Snell et al., 2012). In fact, expulsion rates in preschool are higher than in K-12, and preschool expulsion and suspension rates include stark racial and gender disparities, with young boys of color, including those with disabilities, being suspended and expelled much more frequently than other children (Gilliam, 2005; U.S. Department of Education, 2014; U.S. Department of Education, 2016). In addition, young children with disabilities and their families face significant barriers to accessing inclusive high-quality early childhood programs, despite the research base on the benefits of and the legal foundation for inclusion.1

    1 Section 632(4)(G) of the IDEA Part C requires that, to the maximum extent appropriate, factoring in each child's routines, needs, and outcomes, early intervention services be made available to all eligible infants and toddlers with disabilities in “natural environments,” including the home, and community settings in which children without disabilities participate. Section 619 of the IDEA Part B requires that to the maximum extent appropriate, all children with disabilities, including preschool children with disabilities, must be educated in the least restrictive environment, and removal from the regular education environment occurs only if the nature and severity of the disability is such that education in regular classes with the use of supplementary aids and services cannot be achieved satisfactorily.

    Early childhood multi-tiered systems of support (MTSS) 2 focused on social, emotional, and behavioral development implemented in center-based early childhood settings have shown promise in increasing children's social competence and reducing challenging behaviors. Additionally, 30 States identified in their State Systemic Improvement Plans (SSIPs) 3 improving the social and emotional outcomes of infants and toddlers with disabilities under Part C of the IDEA. However, State and local early childhood programs are not typically organized in a manner that systematically supports early childhood personnel in implementing these interventions. State and local programs need guidance and resources on how to implement the framework, especially in home-based and community settings with young children with, and at risk for, developmental delays or disabilities.

    2 An early childhood MTSS framework (also referred to as response to intervention, or RTI) focused on social, emotional, and behavioral development is a framework used to organize effective practices, interventions, and implementation supports supported by evidence. MTSS strategies are typically organized into three progressively intensive tiers, with specific interventions being executed across primary, secondary and tertiary tiers. The first tier typically includes practices to promote nurturing and responsive caregiving relationships with the child and high-quality supportive environments. The second tier includes explicit instruction in social skills and emotional regulation for children who require more systematic and focused instruction. The third tier is for children with persistent challenging behaviors that are not responsive to interventions at other tiers and involves implementing a plan of intensive, individualized interventions. MTSS intervention strategies should not delay or deny the evaluation of students suspected of having a disability or developmental delay (see OSEP's April 2016 memorandum on the use of RTI in preschool available online: https://www2.ed.gov/policy/speced/guid/idea/memosdcltrs/oseprtipreschoolmemo4-29-16.pdf).

    3 The Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) has redesigned its accountability framework which is designated as Results Driven Accountability (RDA). As part of RDA, OSEP required States to develop, and report in the Annual Performance Report (APR), the State Systemic Improvement Plan (SSIP). The SSIP is a comprehensive, multi-year plan that is focused on improving a State-identified measureable result (SIMR). Thirty State IDEA Part C programs have developed SSIPs that have SIMRs specifically focused on improving the social and emotional outcomes of infants and toddlers with disabilities.

    To support young children's social, emotional, and behavioral development and reduce their challenging behaviors, this priority will fund a cooperative agreement to establish and operate a national Technical Assistance Center on Positive Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Outcomes for Young Children with, and at Risk for, Developmental Delays or Disabilities. The center will develop an early childhood MTSS framework, and then support States, early childhood programs, and personnel in implementing this framework focused on improving social, emotional, and behavioral development.

    Priority

    The purpose of this priority is to fund a cooperative agreement to establish and operate a Technical Assistance Center on Positive Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Outcomes for Young Children with, and at Risk 4 for, Developmental Delays or Disabilities to achieve, at a minimum, the following:

    4 Section 663(b)(1) of the IDEA gives the Department the authority to include a focus on “at-risk” children in this priority: “Funds received under this section shall be used to support activities to improve services provided under this title, including the practices of professionals and others involved in providing such services to children with disabilities, that promote academic achievement and improve results for children with disabilities through . . . implementing effective strategies for addressing inappropriate behavior of students with disabilities in schools, including strategies to prevent children with emotional and behavioral problems from developing emotional disturbances that require the provision of special education and related services.” Under IDEA Part C, States have the option to serve “at-risk infants and toddlers,” defined under section 632(1) as individuals under three years of age who would be at risk of experiencing a substantial developmental delay if early intervention services were not provided to the individual. Additionally, under section 638(5) of the IDEA, States that do not serve “at-risk infants and toddlers” under IDEA Part C may strengthen the statewide system by initiating, expanding, or improving collaborative efforts to at-risk infants and toddlers, including establishing linkages with appropriate public or private community-based organizations, services, and personnel for IDEA child find and related purposes.

    (a) An early childhood multi-tiered systems of support (MTSS) framework focused on improving social, emotional, and behavioral development that explicitly integrates practices supported by evidence (as defined in this notice); addresses the needs of infants and toddlers as well as preschoolers; reduces inappropriate and disproportionate discipline practices affecting young children of color; increases inclusion and ongoing participation of young children with disabilities in early childhood settings; promotes family engagement; and is relevant for various early childhood settings (center, home, and community-based);

    (b) Improved State and local capacity, including improved skills of personnel, to organize the infrastructure components (including policies, funding, workforce, coaching, data collection and analysis, and interagency leadership) needed to support, scale-up, and sustain the implementation of the early childhood MTSS framework described in paragraph (a) across early childhood programs; and

    (c) Increased State and local implementation of the early childhood MTSS framework described in paragraph (a) with early childhood programs and providers using reliable and valid tools and processes for evaluating the fidelity of the implementation of the early childhood MTSS framework focused on social, emotional, and behavioral development; and measuring improvements in young children's social, emotional, and behavioral outcomes, and reductions in behavior incidents, suspensions, and expulsions.

    In addition to these programmatic requirements, to be considered for funding under this priority, applicants must meet the application and administrative requirements in this priority, which are:

    (a) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under “Significance of the Project,” how the proposed project will—

    (1) Address the current and emerging needs of States, early childhood programs, and personnel to improve the social, emotional, and behavioral outcomes of young children with, and at risk for, developmental delays or disabilities through the implementation of an early childhood MTSS framework. To meet this requirement the applicant must—

    (i) Present applicable national and State data demonstrating the need to address improved positive social, emotional, and behavioral outcomes in young children with, and at risk for, developmental delays or disability and the needs of States, early childhood programs, and personnel in implementing an early childhood MTSS framework focused on social, emotional, and behavioral development;

    (ii) Demonstrate knowledge of current educational issues and policy initiatives related to: Implementing and sustaining an early childhood MTSS framework that promotes positive social, emotional, and behavioral outcomes for young children with, and at risk for, developmental delays or disability across early childhood settings; reducing disproportionate discipline practices and suspension and expulsion; and increasing inclusive opportunities for young children with disabilities;

    (iii) Present information about the current level of State and local implementation of:

    (A) Early childhood MTSS frameworks focused on social, emotional, and behavioral development;

    (B) Activities to reduce disproportionate discipline and suspension and expulsion practices in early childhood programs;

    (C) Activities to address challenging behavior as a barrier to inclusive opportunities for young children with disabilities; and

    (D) IDEA Part C activities to implement SSIPs targeting their State-identified measurable result (SIMR) on the improvement of social and emotional outcomes;

    (2) Improve State and local implementation of an early childhood MTSS framework focused on social, emotional, and behavioral development and indicate the likely magnitude or importance of the improvements.

    (b) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under “Quality of the Project Services,” how the proposed project will—

    (1) Ensure equal access and treatment for members of groups that have traditionally been underrepresented based on race, color, national origin, gender, age, or disability. To meet this requirement, the applicant must describe how it will—

    (i) Identify the needs of the intended recipients for TA and information; and

    (ii) Ensure that services and products meet the needs of the intended recipients;

    (2) Achieve its goals, objectives, and intended outcomes. To meet this requirement, the applicant must provide—

    (i) Measurable intended project outcomes; and

    (ii) The logic model by which the proposed project will achieve its intended outcomes. A logic model used in connection with this priority communicates how a project will achieve its intended outcomes and provides a framework for both the formative and summative evaluations of the project;

    (3) Use a conceptual framework to develop project plans and activities, describing any underlying concepts, assumptions, expectations, beliefs, or theories, as well as the presumed relationships or linkages among these variables, and any empirical support for this framework;

    Note:

    Rather than use the definition of “logic model” in 34 CFR 77.1(c), OSEP uses the definition in paragraph (b)(2)(ii) of these application requirements. This definition, unlike the definition in 34 CFR 77.1(c), differentiates between logic models and conceptual frameworks. The following Web sites provide more information on logic models: www.osepideasthatwork.org/logicModel and www.osepideasthatwork.org/resources-grantees/program-areas/ta-ta/tad-project-logic-model-and-conceptual-framework.

    (4) Be based on current research and make use of practices supported by evidence. To meet this requirement, the applicant must describe—

    (i) The current research on the effectiveness of an early childhood MTSS framework focused on social, emotional, and behavioral development and related practices supported by evidence;

    (ii) The current research about adult learning principles and implementation science or improvement science that will inform the proposed TA; and

    (iii) How the proposed project will incorporate current research and practices supported by evidence in the development and delivery of its products and services;

    (5) Develop products and provide services that are of high quality and sufficient intensity and duration to achieve the intended outcomes of the proposed project. To address this requirement, the applicant must describe—

    (i) How it proposes to identify or develop the knowledge base on effective practices within, and implementation supports for, an early childhood MTSS framework focused on social, emotional, and behavioral development that—

    (A) Improves the social, emotional, and behavioral development of infants, toddlers, and preschoolers with, or at risk for, developmental delays and disabilities;

    (B) Reduces the use of suspension and expulsion in early childhood programs and addresses the disproportionate discipline practices for young children of color;

    (C) Increases the inclusion of young children with disabilities in early childhood programs;

    (D) Integrates infant mental health specialists and early childhood mental health consultants in the implementation of an early childhood MTSS framework;

    (E) Allows for the collection and use of data to inform decision-making about improving social, emotional, and behavioral outcomes for young children; and

    (F) Engages families of young children, including those from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds, in the social, emotional, and behavioral development of their children;

    (ii) Its proposed approach to universal, general TA,5 which must identify the intended recipients of the products and services under this approach and should include activities focused on strengthening an early childhood MTSS framework that promotes young children's social, emotional, and behavioral development including developing and strengthening existing resources, guidance, and tools on:

    5 “Universal, general TA” means TA and information provided to independent users through their own initiative, resulting in minimal interaction with TA center staff and including one-time, invited or offered conference presentations by TA center staff. This category of TA also includes information or products, such as newsletters, guidebooks, or research syntheses, downloaded from the TA center's Web site by independent users. Brief communications by TA center staff with recipients, either by telephone or email, are also considered universal, general TA.

    (A) Practices supported by evidence, policies and implementation supports to promote infant, toddlers' and preschoolers' social, emotional, and behavioral outcomes;

    (B) Addressing potential disparities in the application or effect of discipline practices for young children of color and reducing suspension and expulsion in programs serving young children with, and at risk for, developmental delays and disabilities;

    (C) Using valid and reliable tools to measure change in social, emotional, and behavioral outcomes at the child level and making data-based decisions to inform interventions; and

    (D) Collecting data on progress towards social, emotional, and behavioral outcomes and discipline practices at the program level, and how to use these data to make decisions related to practices and policies;

    (iii) Its proposed approach to targeted, specialized TA,6 which must identify—

    6 “Targeted, specialized TA” means TA services based on needs common to multiple recipients and not extensively individualized. A relationship is established between the TA recipient and one or more TA center staff. This category of TA includes one-time, labor-intensive events, such as facilitating strategic planning or hosting regional or national conferences. It can also include episodic, less labor-intensive events that extend over a period of time, such as facilitating a series of conference calls on single or multiple topics that are designed around the needs of the recipients. Facilitating communities of practice can also be considered targeted, specialized TA.

    (A) The intended recipients, including the type and number of recipients that will receive the products and services under this approach;

    (B) Its proposed approach to measure the readiness of potential TA recipients to work with the project, assessing, at a minimum, their current infrastructure, available resources, and ability to build capacity at the local level;

    (C) The process by which the proposed project will collaborate with OSEP-funded TA centers (see www.osepideasthatwork.org/find-center-or-grant/find-a-center) and other federally funded TA Centers; and

    (D) Its proposed approach to increasing the engagement and leadership of State IDEA Part C and Part B, section 619 coordinators to collaborate with other early childhood State leaders to significantly reduce or eliminate suspension and expulsion practices in early childhood programs.

    (iv) Its proposed approach to intensive, sustained TA,7 which must identify—

    7 “Intensive, sustained TA” means TA services often provided on-site and requiring a stable, ongoing relationship between the TA center staff and the TA recipient. “TA services” are defined as negotiated series of activities designed to reach a valued outcome. This category of TA should result in changes to policy, program, practice, or operations that support increased recipient capacity or improved outcomes at one or more systems levels.

    (A) The intended recipients, including the type and number of recipients that will receive the products and services under this approach;

    (B) Its proposed approach to measure the readiness of the recipients to work with the project, including their commitment to the initiative, alignment of the initiative to their needs, current infrastructure, available resources, and ability to build capacity at the local level;

    (C) Its proposed plan for assisting State early childhood agencies (including State educational agencies (SEAs) and lead agencies) to build training systems that include professional development based on adult learning principles and coaching;

    (D) Its proposed plan for working across the early childhood and health systems (e.g., child care, Head Start, State-funded prekindergarten, Part C and Part B section 619 of IDEA, home visiting, mental health) and with appropriate levels of the systems (e.g., State early learning agencies, regional TA providers, districts and communities, schools and local programs, families) to ensure that there is communication across programs and between each level and that there are systems in place to support the use of an early childhood MTSS framework focused on social, emotional, and behavioral development; and

    (E) The process by which the proposed project will collaborate with OSEP-funded centers (see www.osepideasthatwork.org/find-center-or-grant/find-a-center) and other federally funded TA Centers.

    (6) Develop products and implement services that maximize efficiency. To address this requirement, the applicant must describe—

    (i) How the proposed project will use technology to achieve the intended project outcomes;

    (ii) With whom the proposed project will collaborate and the intended outcomes of this collaboration; and

    (iii) How the proposed project will use non-project resources to achieve the intended project outcomes.

    (c) In the narrative section of the application under “Quality of the Evaluation Plan,” include an evaluation plan for the project as described in the following paragraphs. The evaluation plan must describe: Measures of progress in implementation, including the criteria for determining the extent to which the project's products and services have met the goals for reaching its target population; measures of intended outcomes or results of the project's activities in order to evaluate those activities; and how well the goals or objectives of the proposed project, as described in its logic model, have been met.

    (d) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under “Adequacy of Project Resources,” how—

    (1) The proposed project will encourage applications for employment from persons who are members of groups that have traditionally been underrepresented based on race, color, national origin, gender, age, or disability, as appropriate;

    (2) The proposed key project personnel, consultants, and subcontractors have the qualifications and experience to carry out the proposed activities and achieve the project's intended outcomes;

    (3) The applicant and any key partners have adequate resources to carry out the proposed activities; and

    (4) The proposed costs are reasonable in relation to the anticipated results and benefits.

    (e) Demonstrate, in the narrative section of the application under “Quality of the Management Plan,” how—

    (1) The proposed management plan will ensure that the project's intended outcomes will be achieved on time and within budget. To address this requirement, the applicant must describe—

    (i) Clearly defined responsibilities for key project personnel, consultants, and subcontractors, as applicable; and

    (ii) Timelines and milestones for accomplishing the project tasks;

    (2) Allocation of key project providers and any consultants and subcontractors, and how these allocations are appropriate and adequate to achieve the project's intended outcomes;

    (3) The proposed management plan will ensure that the products and services provided are of high quality, relevant, and useful to recipients;

    (4) The proposed project will benefit from a diversity of perspectives, including those of families, various early childhood programs, educators, TA providers, future leaders, researchers, and policy makers, among others, in its development and operation; and

    (f) Address the following application requirements. The applicant must—

    (1) Include, in Appendix A, a logic model that depicts, at a minimum, the goals, activities, outputs, and intended outcomes of the proposed project.

    (2) Include, in Appendix A, a conceptual framework for the project;

    (3) Include, in Appendix A, personnel-loading charts and timelines, as applicable, to illustrate the management plan described in the narrative;

    (4) Include, in the budget, attendance at the following:

    (i) A one and one-half day kick-off meeting in Washington, DC, after receipt of the award, and an annual planning meeting in Washington, DC, with the OSEP project officer and other relevant staff during each subsequent year of the project period.

    Note:

    Within 30 days of receipt of the award, a post-award teleconference must be held between the OSEP project officer and the grantee's project director or other authorized representative;

    (ii) A two and one-half day project directors' conference in Washington, DC, during each year of the project period;

    (iii) Three trips annually to attend Department briefings, Department-sponsored conferences, and other meetings, as requested by OSEP; and

    (iv) A one-day intensive 3+2 review meeting in Washington, DC, during the last half of the second year of the project period;

    (5) Include, in the budget, a line item for an annual set-aside of five percent of the grant amount to support emerging needs that are consistent with the proposed project's intended outcomes, as those needs are identified in consultation with and approved by the OSEP project officer.

    Note:

    With approval from the OSEP project officer, the project must reallocate any remaining funds from this annual set-aside no later than the end of the third quarter of each budget period;

    (6) Engage doctoral students or post-doctoral fellows to increase the number of future leaders in the field who are knowledgeable about how to implement, scale-up, and sustain an early childhood MTSS framework focused on social, emotional, and behavioral development through engagement with the project; and

    (7) Maintain a high-quality Web site, with an easy-to-navigate design, that meets government or industry-recognized standards for accessibility.

    Fourth and Fifth Years of the Project

    In deciding whether to continue funding the project for the fourth and fifth years, the Secretary will consider the requirements of 34 CFR 75.253(a), as well as—

    (a) The recommendation of a 3+2 review team consisting of experts selected by the Secretary. This review will be conducted during a one-day intensive meeting that will be held during the last half of the second year of the project period;

    (b) The timeliness and assessment of how well the requirements of the negotiated cooperative agreement have been or are being met by the project; and

    (c) The quality, relevance, and usefulness of the project's products and services and the extent to which the project's products and services are aligned with the project's objectives and likely to result in the project achieving its intended outcomes.

    References Buettner, C.K., Hur, E.H., Jeon, L., & Andrews, D.W. (2016, February). What are we teaching the teachers? Child development curricula in US higher education. Child & Youth Care Forum 45(1), 155-175. Gilliam, W.S. (2005). Prekindergarteners left behind: Expulsion rates in state prekindergarten systems. New York, NY: Foundation for Child Development. Hemmeter, M.L., Corso, R., & Cheatham, G. (2006, February). Issues in addressing challenging behaviors in young children: A national survey of early childhood educators. Paper presented at the Conference on Research Innovations in Early Intervention. San Diego, CA. Jones, D.E., Greenberg, M, & Crowley, M. (2015). Early social-emotional functioning and public health: The relationship between kindergarten social competence and future wellness. American Journal of Public Health, 105(11), 2283-2290. Snell, M.E., Voorhees, M.D., Berlin, R.A., Stanton-Chapman, T.L., Hadden, S., & McCarty, J. (2012). Use of interview and observation to clarify reported practices of Head Start staff concerning problem behavior: for programs and training. Journal of Positive Behavior Interventions, 14, 108-117. U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights. (2014). Data snapshot: Early childhood education. Retrieved from: https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/crdc-early-learning-snapshot.pdf. U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights. (2016). 2013-2014 civil rights data collection: A first look. Retrieved from: http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/2013-14-first-look.pdf. Definitions

    For the purposes of this priority:

    Strong theory means a rationale for the proposed process, product, strategy, or practice that includes a logic model (34 CFR 77.1).

    Supported by evidence means supported by at least strong theory.

    Waiver of Proposed Rulemaking: Under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) (5 U.S.C. 553) the Department generally offers interested parties the opportunity to comment on proposed priorities and requirements. Section 681(d) of IDEA, however, makes the public comment requirements of the APA inapplicable to the priority in this notice.

    Program Authority: 20 U.S.C. 1463 and 1481.

    Applicable Regulations: (a) The Education Department General Administrative Regulations in 34 CFR parts 75, 77, 79, 81, 82, 84, 86, 97, 98, and 99. (b) The Office of Management and Budget Guidelines to Agencies on Governmentwide Debarment and Suspension (Nonprocurement) in 2 CFR part 180, as adopted and amended as regulations of the Department in 2 CFR part 3485. (c) The Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards in 2 CFR part 200, as adopted and amended as regulations of the Department in 2 CFR part 3474.

    Note:

    The regulations in 34 CFR part 79 apply to all applicants except federally recognized Indian Tribes.

    Note:

    The regulations in 34 CFR part 86 apply to institutions of education (IHEs) only.

    II. Award Information

    Type of Award: Cooperative agreement.

    Estimated Available Funds: The Administration has requested $44,345,000 for the Technical Assistance and Dissemination to Improve Services and Results for Children with Disabilities program for FY 2017, of which we intend to use an estimated $1,100,000 for this competition. The actual level of funding, if any, depends on final congressional action. However, we are inviting applications to allow enough time to complete the grant process if Congress appropriates funds for this program.

    Contingent upon the availability of funds and the quality of applications, we may make additional awards in FY 2018 from the list of unfunded applications from this competition.

    Maximum Award: We will fund a successful application only up to $1,100,000 for a single budget period of 12 months.

    Estimated Number of Awards: 1.

    Note:

    The Department is not bound by any estimates in this notice.

    Project Period: Up to 60 months.

    III. Eligibility Information

    1. Eligible Applicants: SEAs; State lead agencies under Part C of the IDEA; local educational agencies (LEAs), including public charter schools that operate as LEAs under State law; IHEs; other public agencies; private nonprofit organizations; freely associated States and outlying areas; Indian Tribes or Tribal organizations; and for-profit organizations.

    2. Cost Sharing or Matching: This program does not require cost sharing or matching.

    3. Eligible Subgrantees: (a) Under 34 CFR 75.708(b) and (c) a grantee may award subgrants—to directly carry out project activities described in its application—to the following types of entities: IHEs and private nonprofit organizations suitable to carry out the activities proposed in the application.

    (b) The grantee may award subgrants to entities it has identified in an approved application.

    4. Other General Requirements: (a) Recipients of funding under this competition must make positive efforts to employ and advance in employment qualified individuals with disabilities (see section 606 of IDEA).

    (b) Each applicant for, and recipient of, funding must, with respect to the aspects of their proposed project relating to the absolute priority, involve individuals with disabilities, or parents of individuals with disabilities ages birth through 26, in planning, implementing, and evaluating the project (see section 682(a)(1)(A) of IDEA).

    IV. Application and Submission Information

    1. Address To Request Application Package: You can obtain an application package via the internet or from the Education Publications Center (ED Pubs). To obtain a copy via the internet, use the following address: www.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/grantapps/index.html. To obtain a copy from ED Pubs, write, fax, or call: ED Pubs, U.S. Department of Education, P.O. Box 22207, Alexandria, VA 22304. Telephone, toll free: 1-877-433-7827. FAX: (703) 605-6794. If you use a TDD or a TTY, call, toll free: 1-877-576-7734.

    You can contact ED Pubs at its Web site, also: www.EDPubs.gov or at its email address: [email protected]

    If you request an application package from ED Pubs, be sure to identify this competition as follows: CFDA number 84.326B.

    Individuals with disabilities can obtain a copy of the application package in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or compact disc) by contacting the person or team listed under Accessible Format in section VII of this notice.

    2. Content and Form of Application Submission: Requirements concerning the content and form of an application, together with the forms you must submit, are in the application package for this competition.

    Page Limit: The application narrative (Part III of the application) is where you, the applicant, address the selection criteria that reviewers use to evaluate your application. We recommend that you—(1) limit Part III to no more than 70 pages, and (2) use the following standards:

    • A “page” is 8.5″ x 11″, on one side only, with 1″ margins at the top, bottom, and both sides.

    • Double-space (no more than three lines per vertical inch) all text in the application narrative, including titles, headings, footnotes, quotations, reference citations, and captions, as well as all text in charts, tables, figures, graphs, and screen shots.

    • Use a font that is 12 point or larger.

    Use one of the following fonts: Times New Roman, Courier, Courier New, or Arial.

    The recommended page limit does not apply to Part I, the cover sheet; Part II, the budget section, including the narrative budget justification; Part IV, the assurances and certifications; or the abstract (follow the guidance provided in the application package for completing the abstract), the table of contents, the list of priority requirements, the resumes, the reference list, the letters of support, or the appendices. However, the recommended page limit does apply to all of Part III, the application narrative, including all text in charts, tables, figures, graphs, and screen shots.

    3. Submission Dates and Times:

    Applications Available: June 7, 2017.

    Deadline for Transmittal of Applications: July 24, 2017.

    Applications for grants under this competition must be submitted electronically using the Grants.gov Apply site (Grants.gov). For information (including dates and times) about how to submit your application electronically, or in paper format by mail or hand delivery if you qualify for an exception to the electronic submission requirement, please refer to Other Submission Requirements in section IV of this notice.

    We do not consider an application that does not comply with the deadline requirements.

    Individuals with disabilities who need an accommodation or auxiliary aid in connection with the application process should contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. If the Department provides an accommodation or auxiliary aid to an individual with a disability in connection with the application process, the individual's application remains subject to all other requirements and limitations in this notice.

    Deadline for Intergovernmental Review: September 20, 2017.

    4. Intergovernmental Review: This competition is subject to Executive Order 12372 and the regulations in 34 CFR part 79. Information about Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs under Executive Order 12372 is in the application package for this competition.

    5. Funding Restrictions: We reference regulations outlining funding restrictions in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.

    6. Data Universal Numbering System Number, Taxpayer Identification Number, and System for Award Management: To do business with the Department of Education, you must—

    a. Have a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number and a Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN);

    b. Register both your DUNS number and TIN with the System for Award Management (SAM), the Government's primary registrant database;

    c. Provide your DUNS number and TIN on your application; and

    d. Maintain an active SAM registration with current information while your application is under review by the Department and, if you are awarded a grant, during the project period.

    You can obtain a DUNS number from Dun and Bradstreet at the following Web site: http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform. A DUNS number can be created within one to two business days.

    If you are a corporate entity, agency, institution, or organization, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal Revenue Service. If you are an individual, you can obtain a TIN from the Internal Revenue Service or the Social Security Administration. If you need a new TIN, please allow two to five weeks for your TIN to become active.

    The SAM registration process can take approximately seven business days, but may take upwards of several weeks, depending on the completeness and accuracy of the data you enter into the SAM database. Thus, if you think you might want to apply for Federal financial assistance under a program administered by the Department, please allow sufficient time to obtain and register your DUNS number and TIN. We strongly recommend that you register early.

    Note

    Once your SAM registration is active, it may be 24 to 48 hours before you can access the information in, and submit an application through, Grants.gov.

    If you are currently registered with SAM, you may not need to make any changes. However, please make certain that the TIN associated with your DUNS number is correct. Also note that you will need to update your registration annually. This may take three or more business days.

    Information about SAM is available at www.SAM.gov. To further assist you with obtaining and registering your DUNS number and TIN in SAM or updating your existing SAM account, we have prepared a SAM.gov Tip Sheet, which you can find at: www2.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/sam-faqs.html.

    In addition, if you are submitting your application via Grants.gov, you must (1) be designated by your organization as an Authorized Organization Representative (AOR); and (2) register yourself with Grants.gov as an AOR. Details on these steps are outlined at the following Grants.gov Web page: www.grants.gov/web/grants/register.html.

    7. Other Submission Requirements: Applications for grants under this competition must be submitted electronically unless you qualify for an exception to this requirement in accordance with the instructions in this section.

    a. Electronic Submission of Applications.

    We are a participating partner in the Governmentwide Grants.gov Apply site. Technical Assistance Center on Positive Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Outcomes for Young Children with, and at Risk for, Developmental Delays or Disabilities competition, CFDA number 84.326B, is included in this project. We request your participation in Grants.gov.

    If you choose to submit your application electronically, use the Governmentwide Grants.gov Apply site at www.Grants.gov. Through this site, you will be able to download a copy of the application package, complete it offline, and then upload and submit your application.

    You may access the electronic grant application for the Technical Assistance Center on Positive Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Outcomes for Young Children with, and at Risk for, Developmental Delays or Disabilities competition at www.Grants.gov. You must search for the downloadable application package for this competition by the CFDA number. Do not include the CFDA number's alpha suffix in your search (e.g., search for 84.326, not 84.326B).

    Please note the following:

    • When you enter the Grants.gov site, you will find information about submitting an application electronically through the site, as well as the hours of operation.

    • Applications received by Grants.gov are date and time stamped. Your application must be fully uploaded and submitted and must be date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system no later than 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. Except as otherwise noted in this section, we will not accept your application if it is received—that is, date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system—after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. We do not consider an application that does not comply with the deadline requirements. When we retrieve your application from Grants.gov, we will notify you if we are rejecting your application because it was date and time stamped by the Grants.gov system after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date.

    • The amount of time it can take to upload an application will vary depending on a variety of factors, including the size of the application and the speed of your internet connection. Therefore, we strongly recommend that you do not wait until the application deadline date to begin the submission process through Grants.gov.

    • You should review and follow the Education Submission Procedures for submitting an application through Grants.gov that are included in the application package for this competition to ensure that you submit your application in a timely manner to the Grants.gov system. You can also find the Education Submission Procedures pertaining to Grants.gov under News and Events on the Department's G5 system home page at www.G5.gov. In addition, for specific guidance and procedures for submitting an application through Grants.gov, please refer to the Grants.gov Web site at: www.grants.gov/web/grants/applicants/apply-for-grants.html.

    • You will not receive additional point value because you submit your application in electronic format, nor will we penalize you if you submit your application in paper format.

    • If you submit your application electronically, submit all documents electronically, including all information you typically provide on the following forms: the Application for Federal Assistance (SF 424), the Department of Education Supplemental Information for SF 424, Budget Information—Non-Construction Programs (ED 524), and all necessary assurances and certifications.

    • If you submit your application electronically, upload any narrative sections and all other attachments to your application as files in a read-only Portable Document Format (PDF). Do not upload an interactive or fillable PDF file. If you upload a file type other than a read-only PDF (e.g., Word, Excel, WordPerfect, etc.) or submit a password-protected file, we will not review that material. Please note that this could result in your application not being considered for funding because the material in question—for example, the application narrative—is critical to a meaningful review of your proposal. For that reason it is important to allow yourself adequate time to upload all material as PDF files. The Department will not convert material from other formats to PDF. Additional, detailed information on how to attach files is in the application instructions.

    • After you electronically submit your application, you will receive from Grants.gov an automatic notification of receipt that contains a Grants.gov tracking number. This notification indicates receipt by Grants.gov only, not receipt by the Department. Grants.gov will also notify you automatically by email if your application met all the Grants.gov validation requirements or if there were any errors (such as submission of your application by someone other than a registered Authorized Organization Representative, or inclusion of an attachment with a file name that contains special characters). You will be given an opportunity to correct any errors and resubmit, but you must still meet the deadline for submission of applications.

    Once your application is successfully validated by Grants.gov, the Department will retrieve your application from Grants.gov and send you an email with a unique PR/Award number for your application.

    These emails do not mean that your application is without any disqualifying errors. While your application may have been successfully validated by Grants.gov, it must also meet the Department's application requirements as specified in this notice and in the application instructions. Disqualifying errors could include, for instance, failure to upload attachments in a read-only PDF; failure to submit a required part of the application; or failure to meet applicant eligibility requirements. It is your responsibility to ensure that your submitted application has met all of the Department's requirements.

    • We may request that you provide us original signatures on forms at a later date.

    Application Deadline Date Extension in Case of Technical Issues with the Grants.gov System: If you are experiencing problems submitting your application through Grants.gov, please contact the Grants.gov Support Desk, toll free, at 1-800-518-4726. You must obtain a Grants.gov Support Desk Case Number and must keep a record of it.

    If you are prevented from electronically submitting your application on the application deadline date because of technical problems with the Grants.gov system, we will grant you an extension until 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, the following business day to enable you to transmit your application electronically or by hand delivery. You also may mail your application by following the mailing instructions described elsewhere in this notice.

    If you submit an application after 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date, please contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT and provide an explanation of the technical problem you experienced with Grants.gov, along with the Grants.gov Support Desk Case Number. We will accept your application if we can confirm that a technical problem occurred with the Grants.gov system and that the problem affected your ability to submit your application by 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, on the application deadline date. We will contact you after we determine whether your application will be accepted.

    Note:

    The extensions to which we refer in this section apply only to the unavailability of, or technical problems with, the Grants.gov system. We will not grant you an extension if you failed to fully register to submit your application to Grants.gov before the application deadline date and time or if the technical problem you experienced is unrelated to the Grants.gov system.

    Submission of Paper Applications by Mail

    If you submit your application by mail (through the U.S. Postal Service or a commercial carrier), mail the original and two copies of your application, on or before the application deadline date, to the Department at the following address:

    U.S. Department of Education, Application Control Center, Attention: (CFDA Number 84.326B), LBJ Basement Level 1, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20202-4260

    You must show proof of mailing consisting of one of the following:

    (1) A legibly dated U.S. Postal Service postmark.

    (2) A legible mail receipt with the date of mailing stamped by the U.S. Postal Service.

    (3) A dated shipping label, invoice, or receipt from a commercial carrier.

    (4) Any other proof of mailing acceptable to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education.

    If you mail your application through the U.S. Postal Service, we do not accept either of the following as proof of mailing:

    (1) A private metered postmark.

    (2) A mail receipt that is not dated by the U.S. Postal Service.

    Note:

    The U.S. Postal Service does not uniformly provide a dated postmark. Before relying on this method, you should check with your local post office.

    We will not consider applications postmarked after the application deadline date.

    c. Submission of Paper Applications by Hand Delivery.

    If you submit your applications in paper format by hand delivery, deliver the original and two copies of your application by hand, on or before the application deadline date, to the Department at the following address:

    U.S. Department of Education, Application Control Center, Attention: (CFDA Number 84.326B), 550 12th Street SW., Room 7039, Potomac Center Plaza, Washington, DC 20202-4260

    The Application Control Center accepts hand deliveries daily between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30:00 p.m., Washington, DC time, except Saturdays, Sundays, and Federal holidays.

    Note for Mail or Hand Delivery of Paper Applications:

    If you mail or hand deliver your application to the Department—

    (1) You must indicate on the envelope and—if not provided by the Department—in Item 11 of the SF 424 the CFDA number, including suffix letter, if any, of the competition under which you are submitting your application; and

    (2) The Application Control Center will mail to you a notification of receipt of your grant application. If you do not receive this notification within 15 business days from the application deadline date, you should call the U.S. Department of Education Application Control Center at (202) 245-6288.

    V. Application Review Information

    1. Selection Criteria: The selection criteria for this competition are listed in the application package.

    2. Review and Selection Process: We remind potential applicants that in reviewing applications in any discretionary grant competition, the Secretary may consider, under 34 CFR 75.217(d)(3), the past performance of the applicant in carrying out a previous award, such as the applicant's use of funds, achievement of project objectives, and compliance with grant conditions. The Secretary may also consider whether the applicant failed to submit a timely performance report or submitted a report of unacceptable quality.

    In addition, in making a competitive grant award, the Secretary requires various assurances, including those applicable to Federal civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or activities receiving Federal financial assistance from the Department of Education (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).

    3. Additional Review and Selection Process Factors: In the past, the Department has had difficulty finding peer reviewers for certain competitions because so many individuals who are eligible to serve as peer reviewers have conflicts of interest. The standing panel requirements under section 682(b) of IDEA also have placed additional constraints on the availability of reviewers. Therefore, the Department has determined that for some discretionary grant competitions, applications may be separated into two or more groups and ranked and selected for funding within specific groups. This procedure will make it easier for the Department to find peer reviewers by ensuring that greater numbers of individuals who are eligible to serve as reviewers for any particular group of applicants will not have conflicts of interest. It also will increase the quality, independence, and fairness of the review process, while permitting panel members to review applications under discretionary grant competitions for which they also have submitted applications.

    4. Risk Assessment and Special Conditions: Consistent with 2 CFR 200.205, before awarding grants under this competition the Department conducts a review of the risks posed by applicants. Under 2 CFR 3474.10, the Secretary may impose special conditions and, in appropriate circumstances, high risk conditions on a grant if the applicant or grantee is not financially stable; has a history of unsatisfactory performance; has a financial or other management system that does not meet the standards in 2 CFR part 200, subpart D; has not fulfilled the conditions of a prior grant; or is otherwise not responsible.

    5. Integrity and Performance System: If you are selected under this competition to receive an award that over the course of the project period may exceed the simplified acquisition threshold (currently $150,000), under 2 CFR 200.205(a)(2), we must make a judgment about your integrity, business ethics, and record of performance under Federal awards—that is, the risk posed by you as an applicant—before we make an award. In doing so, we must consider any information about you that is in the integrity and performance system (currently referred to as the Federal Awardee Performance and Integrity Information System (FAPIIS)), accessible through SAM. You may review and comment on any information about yourself that a Federal agency previously entered and that is currently in FAPIIS.

    Please note that, if the total value of your currently active grants, cooperative agreements, and procurement contracts from the Federal Government exceeds $10,000,000, the reporting requirements in 2 CFR part 200, Appendix XII, require you to report certain integrity information to FAPIIS semiannually. Please review the requirements in 2 CFR part 200, Appendix XII, if this grant plus all the other Federal funds you receive exceed $10,000,000.

    VI. Award Administration Information

    1. Award Notices: If your application is successful, we notify your U.S. Representative and U.S. Senators and send you a Grant Award Notification (GAN); or we may send you an email containing a link to access an electronic version of your GAN. We may notify you informally, also.

    If your application is not evaluated or not selected for funding, we notify you.

    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: We identify administrative and national policy requirements in the application package and reference these and other requirements in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice.

    We reference the regulations outlining the terms and conditions of an award in the Applicable Regulations section of this notice and include these and other specific conditions in the GAN. The GAN also incorporates your approved application as part of your binding commitments under the grant.

    3. Reporting: (a) If you apply for a grant under this competition, you must ensure that you have in place the necessary processes and systems to comply with the reporting requirements in 2 CFR part 170 should you receive funding under the competition. This does not apply if you have an exception under 2 CFR 170.110(b).

    (b) At the end of your project period, you must submit a final performance report, including financial information, as directed by the Secretary. If you receive a multiyear award, you must submit an annual performance report that provides the most current performance and financial expenditure information as directed by the Secretary under 34 CFR 75.118. The Secretary may also require more frequent performance reports under 34 CFR 75.720(c). For specific requirements on reporting, please go to www.ed.gov/fund/grant/apply/appforms/appforms.html.

    4. Performance Measures: Under the Government Performance and Results Act of 1993 (GPRA), the Department has established a set of performance measures, including long-term measures, that are designed to yield information on various aspects of the effectiveness and quality of the Technical Assistance and Dissemination to Improve Services and Results for Children With Disabilities program. For purposes of this priority, the Center will use these measures, which focus on the extent to which projects provide high-quality products and services, the relevance of project products and services to educational and early intervention policy and practice, and the use of products and services to improve educational and early intervention policy and practice.

    Projects funded under this competition are required to submit data on these measures as directed by OSEP.

    Grantees will be required to report information on their project's performance in annual and final performance reports to the Department (34 CFR 75.590).

    5. Continuation Awards: In making a continuation award under 34 CFR 75.253, the Secretary considers, among other things: Whether a grantee has made substantial progress in achieving the goals and objectives of the project; whether the grantee has expended funds in a manner that is consistent with its approved application and budget; and, if the Secretary has established performance measurement requirements, the performance targets in the grantee's approved application.

    In making a continuation award, the Secretary also considers whether the grantee is operating in compliance with the assurances in its approved application, including those applicable to Federal civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or activities receiving Federal financial assistance from the Department (34 CFR 100.4, 104.5, 106.4, 108.8, and 110.23).

    VII. Other Information

    Accessible Format: Individuals with disabilities can obtain this document and a copy of the application package in an accessible format (e.g., braille, large print, audiotape, or compact disc) by contacting the Management Support Services Team, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., Room 5113, Potomac Center Plaza, Washington, DC 20202-2500. Telephone: (202) 245-7363. If you use a TDD or a TTY, call the FRS, toll free, at 1-800-877-8339.

    Electronic Access to This Document: The official version of this document is the document published in the Federal Register. Free internet access to the official edition of the Federal Register and the Code of Federal Regulations is available via the Federal Digital System at: www.thefederalregister.org/fdsys. At this site you can view this document, as well as all other documents of this Department published in the Federal Register, in text or PDF. To use PDF you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available free at the site.

    You may also access documents of the Department published in the Federal Register by using the article search feature at: www.federalregister.gov. Specifically, through the advanced search feature at this site, you can limit your search to documents published by the Department.

    Ruth E. Ryder, Deputy Director, Office of Special Education Programs, delegated the duties of the Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11842 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION [Docket No.: ED-2017-ICCD-0038] Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Protection and Advocacy of Individual Rights (PAIR) AGENCY:

    Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS), Department of Education (ED).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, ED is proposing an extension of an existing information collection.

    DATES:

    Interested persons are invited to submit comments on or before July 7, 2017.

    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-2017-ICCD-0038. 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 216-42, Washington, DC 20202-4537.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For specific questions related to collection activities, please contact Samuel Pierre, 202-245-6488.

    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: Protection and Advocacy of Individual Rights (PAIR).

    OMB Control Number: 1820-0627.

    Type of Review: An extension of an existing information collection.

    Respondents/Affected Public: Private Sector.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Responses: 57.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Burden Hours: 912.

    Abstract: The Annual Protection and Advocacy of Individual Rights (PAIR) Program Performance Report (Form RSA-509) will be used to analyze and evaluate the effectiveness of eligible systems within individual states in meeting annual priorities and objectives. These systems provide services to eligible individuals with disabilities to protect their legal and human rights. Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) uses the form to meet specific data collection requirements of Section 509 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended (the act), and its implementing federal regulations at 34 CFR part 381. PAIR programs must report annually using the form, which is due on or before December 30 each year. Form RSA-509 has enabled RSA to furnish the President and Congress with data on the provision of protection and advocacy services and has helped to establish a sound basis for future funding requests. These data also have been used to indicate trends in the provision of services from year-to-year.

    Dated: June 2, 2017. Tomakie Washington, Acting Director, Information Collection Clearance Division, Office of the Chief Privacy Officer, Office of Management.
    [FR Doc. 2017-11802 Filed 6-6-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION [Docket No.: ED-2017-ICCD-0037] Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission to the Office of Management and Budget for Review and Approval; Comment Request; Annual Client Assistance Program (CAP) Report AGENCY:

    Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS), Department of Education (ED).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, ED is proposing an extension of an existing information collection.

    DATES:

    Interested persons are invited to submit comments on or before July 7, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    To access and review all the documents related to the informat